17:05 02 March 2017
Using a futuristic ‘mind-reading’ headband, scientists from Drexel and Princeton Universities were able to establish how brains synch up when humans interact. The device, which is called functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS), shines long wavelength light through the scalp and measures its absorption in the brain.
The study was participated by a native English speaker and two native Turkish speakers who were asked to tell an unrehearsed story in their native language. Their stories were then recorded and were later played to fifteen English speakers while wearing the FNIRS device.
The study concluded that the listener’s brain activity only correlated with the speaker’s when listening to a story in their own language.
Dr Hasan Ayaz, who led the study, said: 'We live in a social world where everybody is interacting.
'Being able to look at how multiple brains interact is an emerging context in social neuroscience.
'And we now have a tool that can give us richer information about the brain during everyday tasks - such as natural communication - that we could not receive in artificial lab settings or from single brain studies.'