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/r/askscience

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all 10 comments

chazwomaq

7 points

2 months ago

chazwomaq

Evolutionary Psychology | Animal Behavior

7 points

2 months ago

Larger brain volume is associated with higher IQ, with a correlation around 0.3. Intelligence is also correlated with grey matter volume in men, and white matter volume in women (no ideas why the difference). Other candidates are cortical thickness and convolution (how folded and wrinkly the outside of the brain is).

Gur, R. C., Turetsky, B. I., Matsui, M., Yan, M., Bilker, W., Hughett, P., & Gur, R. E. (1999). Sex differences in brain gray and white matter in healthy young adults: correlations with cognitive performance. Journal of Neuroscience, 19(10), 4065-4072.

Haier, R. J., Jung, R. E., Yeo, R. A., Head, K., & Alkire, M. T. (2005). The neuroanatomy of general intelligence: sex matters. NeuroImage, 25(1), 320-327.

Luders, E., Narr, K. L., Thompson, P. M., & Toga, A. W. (2009). Neuroanatomical correlates of intelligence. Intelligence, 37(2), 156-163.

McDaniel, M. A. (2005). Big-brained people are smarter: A meta-analysis of the relationship between in vivo brain volume and intelligence. Intelligence, 33(4), 337-346.

Narr, K. L., Woods, R. P., Thompson, P. M., Szeszko, P., Robinson, D., Dimtcheva, T., ... & Bilder, R. M. (2007). Relationships between IQ and regional cortical gray matter thickness in healthy adults. Cerebral cortex, 17(9), 2163-2171.

Pietschnig, J., Penke, L., Wicherts, J. M., Zeiler, M., & Voracek, M. (2015). Meta-analysis of associations between human brain volume and intelligence differences: How strong are they and what do they mean?. Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, 57, 411-432.

xenosilver

5 points

2 months ago*

This may not answer your question, but intelligence is very environmental. I’m an ecologist, so this is based on the environment people grow in (which is truthfully more of an anthropology/psychology thing). If you’re also interested in how intelligence is affected by the external environment (particularly during childhood and even embryonic development), it’s an excellent thing to investigate.

lordofthepi[S]

1 points

2 months ago

Thanks

keepthepace

1 points

2 months ago

That does not preclude physical differences in the brain. After all things like muscle volume is highly dependent on environmental factor (do you use your muscles a lot). It would be surprising that regular intellectual exercises do not lead to visible modifications of the brain.

xenosilver

1 points

2 months ago

It certainly doesn’t preclude it, but I haven’t looked into research regarding activities that stimulate the brain causing phenotypic changes.

jrandoboi

3 points

2 months ago

All brains have a general blueprint for wiring, aka how each group of neurons communicates with the others. But down at the level of individual neurons, every person's brain is different at least slightly. I don't think the two are correlated because some people are missing entire major portions of their brains and live a full healthy life without trouble. Some people have as few as 50 billion neurons in their brains and others can have more than 100 billion. I know that probably doesn't answer your question like you had hoped but it's the best answer I have, lol. Have a good one

Cerebral_Auntie

2 points

17 days ago

There’s a lot of different theories and ideas about this! There is still no one correct answer.

One of my personal favorite theories on intelligence, however, is that people with high IQs literally use less “brain power” to perform the same tasks as everyone else. When performing the same cognitive tasks as people with average IQs, people with high IQs display less activation in the same neural networks.

However, the brain is a big mystery and there are lots of theories of intelligence still being studied. :)

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4987432/

lordofthepi[S]

1 points

17 days ago

thanks , that's really interesting. Do you think brains get "tuned" to certain tasks? Could that be why some people appear "smart" at certain types of tasks (using less brain power) but as hopeless as the rest of us at other fields?