Specific brain regions can be trained by means of video games

Video gaming causes increases in the brain regions responsible for spatial orientation, memory formation and strategic planning as well as fine motor skills. This has been shown in a new study conducted at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development and Charite University Medicine St. Hedwig-Krankenhaus. The positive effects of video gaming may also prove relevant in therapeutic interventions targeting psychiatric disorders.

In order to investigate how video games affect the brain, scientists in Berlin have asked adults to play the video game "Super Mario 64" over a period of two months for 30 minutes a day. A control group did not play video games. Brain volume was quantified using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). In comparison to the control group the video gaming group showed increases of grey matter, in which the cell bodies of the nerve cells of the brain are situated.

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