## Zap the brain with electricity to speed up mental maths

发布时间：2018-01-23 05:01:23来源：未知点击：

BAD at times tables? Just zap your brain with electricity. Roi Cohen Kadosh at the University of Oxford and colleagues have shown that you can boost mental arithmetic by delivering an electrical signal to the brain, exciting the neurons. Using such transcranial random noise stimulation (TRNS), electrodes were placed on the scalp over areas including the prefrontal cortex – used for mental maths. The team gave 25 people TRNS and 26 a sham treatment. Both groups were initially equally fast at their sums. After five 40-minute sessions, the people given TRNS were twice as fast at mental calculations and their rate of improvement was twice that of the other group. Their ability to recall arithmetic facts such as times tables improved five-fold in both measures. Six months later, half the group returned for retesting. The TRNS group still performed the calculations 28 per cent faster than people given the sham treatment (Current Biology, doi.org/mj2). Cohen Kadosh says TRNS could be useful for children with learning difficulties, or help to rehabilitate people after a stroke. This article appeared in print under the headline “For speedier sums,