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CABBIES (TAXI DRIVERS) ARE KNOWN FOR THEIR EXCEPTIONAL KNOWLEDGE OF THE CITY
MEGUIRE WONDERED IF THE BRAINS OF THE CABBIES WOULD BE DIFFERENT...
Had license for at least 1.5 years
SHE SELECTED 16 PARTICIPANTS WITH THE FOLLOWING CONTROLLED VARIABLES:
'Knowledge' test passed
ESPECIALLY FROM THE MANY HOURS THEY'VE SPENT DRIVING THROUGH THE STREETS OF LONDON
This is a study on how cognitive processes may lead to Neuroplasticity in the hippocampus
THEY THEN CONDUCTED MRI SCANS SINGLE-BLINDED(LY) - to prevent bias
THE VBM SHOWED THAT THE VOLUME OF THE RIGHT POSTERIOR HIPPOCAMPI CORRELATED TO THE TIME SPENT AS A CABBIE
QUASI-EXPERIMENT independent variable uncontrollable; natural cause & effect
AND SO, SHE DECIDED TO CONDUCT A QUASI-EXPERIMENT
THE CONTROLS, ON THE OTHER HAND, WERE TAKEN FROM AN MRI DATABASE
The results obtained were then compared against a control group consisting of 50 left-handed, non-cabbie males
The anterior hippocampal region is involved in the coding of new environmental layouts
VBM: Voxel Based Morphometry used to measure density of grey matterPIXEL COUNTINGto measure the area of the hippocampus
THESE WERE LATER MEASURED VIA VBM AND PIXEL COUNTING
Other than hippocampal differences, no other changes were noted.
PIXEL COUNTING REVEALED THAT THE POSTERIOR HIPPOCAMPUS WAS SIGNIFICANTLY LARGER AND THE ANTERIOR HIPPOCAMPUS WAS SIGNIFICANTLY SMALLER
THIS LINKS TO LOCALISATION OF FUNCTION
Maguire believes this demonstrated the hippocampus' ability to change according to environmental demands.
Posterior hippocampus is involved in learned spatial information
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