Neuroplasticity -- the capacity of the brain to rebuild, remodel, and rewire – is a compellingly simple concept. However, the details are stunningly complex and likely even more complex than we know today. The activity in the brain is very hard to see in detail. However, it gets easier over time with more powerful microscopes, new scanning technologies, more precise measuring devices, and advances made in chemistry, physics, and biology, particularly molecular biology. Understanding the brain also requires creative minds that can foresee how a specific process might work before we have the technology to prove it, such that we are inspired to build the technology to test and monitor those assumptions.

Following injury to the brain:

  • Rebuild: the cells in the impaired region might regrow to bring about recovery
  • Remodel: neighboring cells might take on the role previously managed by the now-damaged cells, essentially circumventing the injured region
  • Rewire: a different part of the brain may take on the tasks previously held by the damaged region