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VOA常速英语:鸣禽有助于科学家解开人类语言障碍之谜

kira86 于2018-05-16发布 l 已有人浏览
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科学家借助于鸣禽,了解和突破由于自闭症、中风和帕金森氏症引起的语言障碍问题。
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Songbirds.jpg
Songbirds Could Help Unravel Human Speech Disorders
鸣禽有助于科学家解开人类语言障碍之谜
The tiny brain of this zebra finch may help scientists answer questions on how people form words to talk. Like humans songbirds learn to vocalize by imitation. "We're able to not only just study the mechanisms of how vocal learning works in these songbirds, but translate those findings to humans. And the reason why is because we discovered that songbirds and humans have what we called convergent brain pathways and genes. That are specialized in them that you don't find in things like chicken. "
这只斑胸草雀的小脑袋可以帮助科学家回答人们如何形成语言的问题。与人类一样,鸣禽通过模仿来学会发声。我们不仅能够研究声乐学习的机制,还能将这些发现转化到人类身上。原因是我们发现鸣禽和人类有我们所说的趋同的大脑通路和基因。这是专门针对鸣禽这类鸟的,在鸡之类的禽类身上找不到。
Researchers from Rockefeller University in New York are using laser capture microscopy,a method of isolating cells from microscopic regions of tissues and cells, to get an in-depth look at the songbirds brains. Those images are helping them understand how signals from the birds brains are similar to the process humans use when learning to talk. "We find stuttering in songbirds, we can induce a Parkinson like conditioning then that causes stuttering. And then we can use that to figure out how to repair and then try to induce that in a brain like a human to see if we can repair those circuits.
来自纽约洛克菲勒大学的研究人员正在使用激光捕获显微镜,通过一种从组织和细胞的微观区域分离细胞的方法来深入研究鸣禽的大脑。这些图像帮助他们了解鸟类大脑发出的信号与人类在学习说话时所使用的过程是相似的。我们在鸣禽中发现有发音不顺畅的情况,我们可以诱发一种类似帕金森症的条件,然后导致鸣禽出现这种情况。然后可以用它研究出如何补救,然后试着在类似人类的大脑中诱导它,看看我们是否能修复这些脑神经。
We're also trying to figure out ways to engineer brain circuits in a species that doesn't have that ability,to see if we can induce it or even enhance it. And if that works we can actually try to translate that to humans as well. "Jarvis says it will take years before the findings may be used to treat human speech impediments. "I've had this hypothesis for the last ten years of how to engineer these brain circuits and predict what kind of genes, we would find that has specialized in the brain of humans and songbirds. It took us, let's say five to seven years, so I actually identified those genes. And I think it's gonna take us another five to seven years to actually figure out how to manipulate them. "
我们也在试图找出一种方法来设计一种不具备这种能力的大脑回路,看看我们是否能诱导它,甚至增强它,如果我们能做到这一点,我们也可以试着把它转用给人类。贾维斯说,这些发现可能要花数年时间才能用于治疗人类语言障碍。在过去的十年里,我曾有过这样的假设:如何设计这些大脑回路,并预测那会是什么样的基因,最终我们将会发现这种基因在人类和鸣禽的大脑中是特别的。发现这些基因我们用了五到七年。我认为我们还要再花五到七年时间才能弄清楚如何操纵它们。
Songbirds could provide a window to the origins of speech disorders caused by autism strokes and Parkinson's disease.
鸣禽可以为自闭症中风和帕金森氏症引起的语言障碍的起源提供一个窗口。
Deborah Block VOA News.
美国之音记者黛博拉·布洛克采访报道。
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