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Study: Right-Brain, Left-Brain Personalities Do Not Exist

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A doctor examines the results of a patient's MRI. (Photo by MAURICIO LIMA/AFP/Getty Images)

A doctor examines the results of a patient’s MRI. (Photo by MAURICIO LIMA/AFP/Getty Images)

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SALT LAKE CITY (CBS Las Vegas) – A recent study indicates that the concept of right-brain and left-brain thinking may be little more than a myth.

Researchers at the University of Utah claim they have not only disproven the suggestion that personalities are at least partially dictated by the side of the brain more frequently used by a given person, but that people in general do not favor one side of the brain or the other, Medical News Today is reporting.

The study was conducted over the course of two years, and involved the participation of 1,011 people between the ages of 7 and 29, all of whom were part of the International Neuroimaging Data-Sharing Initiative.

In order to determine whether people favored the left side of the brain – often connected with analytical thoughts and logic-driven behaviors – or the right side of the brain – which many associate with creativity – the team first chronicled was they called “resting” brain activity using MRI technology to be able to better map subsequent reactions during the course of the study.

Medical News Today learned that, after dividing the brain into 7,000 regions and examining each of them during the two years the subjects were studied, researchers found no tendencies toward one side of the brain or the other in any given situation.

“It is absolutely true that some brain functions occur in one or the other side of the brain. Language tends to be on the left, attention more on the right,” lead author Dr. Jeff Anderson was quoted as saying. “But people don’t tend to have a stronger left- or right-sided brain network. It seems to be determined more, connection by connection.”

The study, which researchers feel may serve to negate how people in general view the concepts of right-brain and left-brain mentalities, was published in the journal PLOS ONE.

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