Mind is an on-line publication with the purpose of disseminating knowledge
about the neurosciences to the general public, students and non-specialists.
Brain & Mind is a new on-line magazine in the biomedical area available through the Internet. It is published by the Group of Electronic Publications in Medicine and Biology (e*pub) of the Center for Biomedical Informatics of the State University of Campinas (UNICAMP), simultaneously in two languages (English and Portuguese), since March 1997. The electronic address is http://www.epub.org.br/cm
The journal has the main objective of disseminating knowledge about the neurosciences, in order to give a better understanding about the normal and pathological mental processes that occur in human beings and its relationship with the brain. The journal covers areas such as psychobiology, psychology, mental health, neurology, psychiatry, basic neurobiology, etc., and has as its target audience the general public (lay persons), students and non-specialists in the biological and biomedical areas. It strives to use a clear, objective and accessible language. Articles are written by specialized authors, such as physicians, neuroanatomists, psychiatrists, neurosurgeons, psychologists, etc. The magazine's editors and creators are two neuroscientists, specialized in medical applications in the Internet.
One of the magazine's unique features
is that is has several mechanisms to permit the direct communication between
authors and readers, and for interactive discussion of brain/mind
matters. This is done by means of an e-mail discussion list, named Brainstorm,
where registered readers, professionals, students or other interested persons
can freely express their knowledge, opinions and experiences about the
brain and its manifestations, thus creating a true "virtual" community.
Invited professionals and authors, on the other hand, participate with
questions and comments about what they thought about the issues posed by
readers. In this way, readers from all the world can participate actively,
in a manner not possible in the printed media.
Fundamentals: this section provides basic or general knowledge about the human nervous system organization and functions. Here, articles present information about nervous structures and their biological and chemical functions (brain anatomy, neurons and synapsis functions, neurotransmitters, etc.).
Mind and Behaviour: this section has articles which deal with human behaviour and mental functions, as explained by its underlying neural phenomena (memory, sleep and dreams, sexual behaviour, biological rhythms, etc.).
Technology:this sections provides information about new methodologies, equipments and techniques which represent revolutionary advances in the neurosciences in the past few decades, like PET tomography, brain mapping, radiosurgery, new drugs, etc.
History: this section presents articles on historical developments related to the brain sciences, and what has been their impact on many areas. Typical articles deal with the history of psychosurgery, shock therapies in psychiatry, the discovery of animal electricity, etc.
Brain Diseases: This section provides information about mental and neurological disorders. It covers topics such as epilepsy, stress, schizophrenia, drug abuse, etc.
Neuroforum: this is a general section with the objective of provoking reflections and discussions about brain and mind issues. A section on thoughts contains several quotations by famous personalities such as Charles Darwin, Voltaire, Sigmund Freud, Oscar Wilde, among others. Neuroforum also features authored opinion and discussion papers about controversial subjects, such as early learning, brain and conscience, insanity and culture, etc., as well as interviews with relevant neuroscientists.
Brainstorming, which is also a part of the Neuroforum section, is an e-mail discussion list which allows free questions and comments sent by previously registered readers. Its objective is to stimulate debate, opinions and new ideas about different questions which involve the human brain and mind.
The magazine has other resources which you can check by visiting its site on the WWW. Among them, a news section on basic and clinical neurosciences, lists of information resources on the Internet (including a special section with the main discussion lists in the area) and a repository of public domain software in neurosciences, psychiatry and psychology, etc.
Brain & Mind is indexed in more than 90 general and specialized search indexes in the Internet. In November 1997 it counted already with more than 15,000 visitors, who generated more than 250,000 hits by month, being 72% from USA, 22% from Brazil and the rest from Europe and Asia. Still young, it is becoming an important reference work for students and professionals from many areas and levels alike. According to a reviewer, "the journal has contributed to offer to highly specialized professionals a general vision on the knowledge and on the latest advances in brain sciences and human behaviour".
Center for Biomedical Informatics
State University of Campinas, Brazil
© 1997 Renato M.E. Sabbatini