Science 2 min read

Excellence in General Knowledge Means Your Brain is Efficiently Wired

German neuroscientists reveal the connection between the brain's capacity to store general knowledge and its structural network.

Image courtesy of Shutterstuck

Image courtesy of Shutterstuck

Are you the kind of person who knows the right answers to all those trivia game questions? Or, do you know someone whose general knowledge is just plain exceptional?

If your answer is yes, you or that person could be among the few individuals on this planet with uniquely wired brains.

That’s according to a recent study conducted by neuroscientists from the University in Bochum and Humboldt University of Berlin in Germany.

In their paper titled “The Neural Architecture of General Knowledge,” the researchers provided evidence suggesting a link between brain structure and general knowledge.

The researchers wrote:

“Our results demonstrate that an individual’s level of general knowledge is associated with structural brain network connectivity beyond any confounding effects exerted by age or sex.”

The researchers also noted that the fluid intelligence or ability of males to reason and solve problems depends on the size of their brains (cortex volume). On the other hand, females’ fluid intelligence is best predicted by the functional network connectivity of their brains.

Looking Into the Brains of People With Excellent General Knowledge

For their study, the German neuroscientists examined the brains of 324 men and women using a special form of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) known as diffusion tensor imaging.

The technique enabled the researchers to reconstruct the pathways of nerve fibers in the brains of the volunteers, giving them insight into their structural network properties.

Using mathematical algorithms, the researchers assigned each participant’s brain a unique value that reflects the efficiency of its structural fiber network.

Then, each participant completed a general knowledge test called Bochum Knowledge Test, which contains over 300 questions on different fields of knowledge like arts, architecture, biology, and chemistry.

From the data they gathered, the research team led by Dr. Erhan Genc analyzed whether the efficiency of structural networking is connected with the amount of general knowledge the brain can store.

The result showed that people with efficiently wired brains could store more general knowledge than those whose brains have less efficient structural networks. Dr. Genc noted:

“Efficient networking of the brain is essential in order to put together the information stored in various areas of the brain and successfully recall knowledge content.”

Read More: New Study: Eating Nuts In Early Pregnancy Boosts Children’s Intelligence

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Rechelle Ann Fuertes

Rechelle is an SEO content producer, technical writer, researcher, social media manager, and visual artist. She enjoys traveling and spending time anywhere near the sea with family and friends.

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