X-Message-Number: 25315
From: "Basie" <>
Subject: 'Sixth sense' proved as blind man recognises 
Date: Mon, 13 Dec 2004 20:19:55 -0500

      'Sixth sense' proved as blind man recognises facial emotions
      December 13, 2004

      London: A completely blind British man has been shown to possess an 
apparent "sixth sense" which lets him recognise emotions on people's faces, 
British scientists said in research released yesterday.

      The 52-year-old was able to react to pictures of human faces showing 
emotions such as anger, happiness or fear, the researchers said.

      The man, identified only as "patient X", has suffered two strokes 
which damaged the brain areas that process visual signals, leaving him 
completely blind.

      However, his eyes and optic nerves are intact, and brain scans showed 
that he appeared to somehow use a part of the brain not usually used for 
sight to process visual signals linked to some emotions.

      When researchers from the University of Wales showed the man images of 
shapes such as circles and squares, he could only guess what they were, and 
had a similar lack of success determining the gender of emotionless male and 
female faces.


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