Anesthesia Works by Changing the Brain's Rhythms

Anesthesia Works by Changing the Brain's Rhythms
Courtney Sacco/Corpus Christi Caller-Times via AP

In a uniquely deep and detailed look at how the commonly used anesthetic propofol causes unconsciousness, a collaboration of labs at The Picower Institute for Learning and Memory at MIT shows that as the drug takes hold in the brain, a wide swath of regions become coordinated by very slow rhythms that maintain a commensurately languid pace of neural activity.

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