There is a fascinating report in the journal "Current Biology" that states that patients with "locked in syndrome" can communicate by controlling the size of their pupils. This raises a number of questions:
- What is "locked in syndrome"? What can these patients do and not do?
- What parts of the brain are necessary for consciousness and how are they affected by the locked in syndrome.
- What are the mechanisms for brain control over the muscles that control pupil size and other muscles?
- Is there conscious control over the Autonomic Nervous System?
- Is there a relation to "biofeedback"? What is biofeedback?
- What pathway from the cerebral hemispheres to the ANS could be responsible for conscious control of pupillary dilation?
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