One of the most intriguing characteristics of the brain is its capacity to modify its organization and thus its operation, across the life span, a property referred to as brain plasticity or neuroplasticity. The idea that the brain is modified by experience is probably more than 100 years old. Charles Darwin noticed that the brains of wild rabbits are larger than those of domestic rabbits. But it has only been since the late 1970s that neuroplasticity throughout the life span has been the subject of systematic research. This entry describes brain plasticity, how to measure plasticity, and factors that promote plasticity.

Brain plasticity is a fundamental property of all nervous systems. Even the tiny worm Caenorhabditis elegans, a nematode with a nervous system of only 302 ...

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