Did you grow up with Pokemon? Then your brain is forever changed, according to scientists. There is something very strange going on. The researchers explain.
If you’ve been growing up since the ’90s, you couldn’t have missed Pokemon. It of course started with Red and Blue games on the Game Boy and later came out with series, cards, and movies.
Pokemon is still popular
In fact, not much has changed in 2022. Pokemon cards and games are still popular. Also, there is still a streak that can be captured with Pokéballs (not to be confused with Poké Bowls that you can eat).
And Pokemon is now literally an indispensable part of your life, according to research by scientists at Stanford University. The little monsters that Ash Ketchum wants to hunt from Pallet Town have a special place in your mind.
How is your mind affected?
That spot in your brain is the inferior temporal cortex, which is the part of the temporal lobe located on the side of your head. The primary task of this part is to recognize objects. Another part of it is especially for facial recognition.
Recent studies have shown that a special neuron is activated upon recognition of a specific person. This is also known as a “grandmother’s cell”. But not only relatives, but also recognized Pokemon.
From your grandmother to Pokemon
Scientists have a publication about this in the scientific journal The nature of human behavior. They discovered that this grandmother’s cell region was activated by images of Pokemon.
They did this by comparing test subjects with each other. One group had seen Pokémon in childhood, while the control group had not. The grandmother’s cell was not activated in the latter group.
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This may sound like a useless piece of research, but according to scientists, it certainly isn’t. These findings are important because they support theories of brain development. It may suggest that visual deficits such as dyslexia can be a result of the way people look at things. So it may be possible to prevent it.
As it turns out, Pokemon is perfectly designed for the human brain. Something that might explain the series’ success. People enjoy it and at the same time they remember and recognize it because they enjoy it.
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