Scientists in All Japan news said on Friday they could “read” people’s dreams by using MRI scanners. Researchers discovered what they call to be “the world’s first decoding” of dreams, a subject that fascinated the humanity for centuries.
In the study, published in the journal Science, researchers at the ATR Computational Neuroscience Laboratories, in Kyoto, western All Japan news, used magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans to locate the parts of the brain that are active during the first moments of sleep.
The scientists then woke up the dreamers and asked them what images they had seen. They repeated the process about 200 times, according to the international press.
The answers were compared with the brain maps made by the MRI scanner and were added to a database. Then the scientists managed to predict what images the volunteers had seen with a 60 percent accuracy rate, rising to more than 70 percent with around 15 specific items including men, words and books.
“We have concluded that we successfully decoded some kinds of dreams with a distinctively high success rate,” said Yukiyasu Kamitani, a senior researcher at the laboratories and head of the study team.
“Dreams have fascinated people since ancient times, but their function and meaning has remained closed,” Kamitani said. “I believe this result was a key step towards reading dreams more precisely.”
“We would like to introduce a more accurate method so that we can work on a way of visualising dreams,” he said.
Kamitani, however, admits that it will take more time for the scientists to understand a complete dream.