Neurosciences and Ethics

Klostergut Jakobsberg, 20.–25. April 1986 Federal Republic of Germany

  • Benno Hess
  • Detlev Ploog
  • Uwe Opolka
Conference proceedings

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages I-XII
  2. Opening Address

    1. Heinz A. Staab
      Pages 1-3
  3. Opening Speech

    1. Helmut Kohl
      Pages 4-6
  4. Basic Research in the Neurosciences

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 7-7
    2. Session I

    3. Session II

      1. Masao Ito
        Pages 24-24
      2. Sydney Brenner
        Pages 25-36
    4. Session III

    5. Session IV

  5. Clinical Neurosciences

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 71-71
    2. Session V

      1. Franco Angeleri
        Pages 73-73
    3. Session VI

      1. Henry Begg Dinsdale
        Pages 90-90
  6. Mental Health

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 109-109
    2. Session VII

      1. Anna N. Taylor
        Pages 111-111
      2. Daniel Widlöcher
        Pages 112-114
    3. Session VIII

      1. Paolo M. Fasella
        Pages 129-130
    4. Session IX

  7. Neurosciences and Ethics

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 171-171
    2. Session X

      1. David Marshall
        Pages 173-173
      2. Benno Hess, Detlev Ploog, Uwe Opolka
        Pages 191-201
  8. Back Matter
    Pages 202-204

About these proceedings


The human brain occupies a unique position among the organs of the human body. With its 1010 nerve cells and the innumerable interconnections, it is the most complex living system we know. It is the prerequisite for all though~, feeling, and action and hence for the awareness of ourselves. In many religions and philosophies it was and is considered to be the seat of the immortal soul. For centuries some individuals looked upon the mentally ill with holy reverence, and others responded with shock and radical social ostracism. In the neurosciences, too, the brain is not just one organ among many. As with the genome, it is considered to be an information storage unit. But whereas the genetic information cannot be influenced by the individual carrier, the brain can learn; that is, it is capable of storing information from the life history of its carrier, and it can pass this information on. The neurosciences are an area of research that has cut across the boundaries of the classic disciplines and now includes a broad spectrum ranging from basic research to clinical medicine. These sciences have developed remarkable momentum since they have taken an interdisciplinary approach and made use of experimental techniques and concepts developed in the fields of physics, biochemistry, molecular biology, behavioral physiology, experimental psychology, and computer science.


biology neural network neuroscience neurosurgery psychiatry

Editors and affiliations

  • Benno Hess
    • 1
  • Detlev Ploog
    • 2
  • Uwe Opolka
    • 3
  1. 1.Max-Planck-Institut für ErnährungsphysiologieDortmundGermany
  2. 2.Max-Planck-Institut für PsychiatrieMünchen 40Germany
  3. 3.TübingenGermany

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1988
  • Publisher Name Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Print ISBN 978-3-540-19134-6
  • Online ISBN 978-3-642-73570-7
  • Buy this book on publisher's site