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  • Does the structure of an adult human brain alter in response to environmental demands?
  • Subjects in the juggler group were given 3 months to learn a classic three-ball cascade juggling routine.
  •  A second brain scan was performed when they had become skilled performers (that is, when they could sustain juggling for at least 60 seconds).
  • A third scan was carried out 3 months later; during the intervening period, none of the jugglers practised or attempted to extend their skills
  • We find that these individuals show a transient and selective structural change in brain areas that are associated with the processing and storage of complex visual motion.
  • This discovery of a stimulus-dependent alteration in the brain’s macroscopic structure contradicts the traditionally held view that cortical plasticity is associated with functional rather than anatomical changes
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