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Awesome Neuroscience T-shirts

Updated on February 10, 2012

Wear what's in your head on your chest

Geeky and nerdy t-shirts have become increasingly popular over the last few years, and because of that, it's become increasingly difficult to find unique shirts that express your individuality. For anyone who's interested in the brain, neuroscience, or neurology, there's been a lack of cool neuroscience t-shirts, but here are compiled some of the best ones out there, and the places you can buy them. If you know a neuroscientist, and want to get them a gift, these t-shirts are an absolutely perfect idea. Wear what's on your head proudly on your chest!

Brain T-Shirts - Got Words on the Brain

Have a neuroanatomy test coming up? Need to learn the gyri and lobes of the brain? This awesome neuroscience shirt will solve your problems. Would any professor seriously ask you to take off your shirt during a test? This brain t-shirt illustrates the main gyri of the lateral cerebral cortex and the various lobes of the human brain (yellow - frontal, green - temporal, red - parietal, blue - occipital). Wear what's in your head proudly on your chest!

Neuron T-Shirts

Work those brain cells!

These are t-shirts that work at the cellular level. Neurons are the fundamental unit of the brain that stores and transmits information. Like the lego-block of your mind. The neuron-level include neuronal networks, synapses (the connections between neurons) and all the parts of a neuron.

Neurons have an input section called the dendrites, and an output section, called the axon. Information is funneled into the neuron through it's dendrites. When a neuron becomes excited enough, it will fire an electrical charge that propagates down the axon and communicates to another nearby neuron. This is how information flows within the brain.

There are two basic types of neurons: excitatory and inhibitory. Excitatory neurons make the neurons they're sending signals to more excited and more likely to fire. Inhibitory neurons do just the opposite, they make the neurons they send signals to less likely to fire. Kind of like the "Debby-Downer" neuron of the brain.

And when you combine multiple types of neurons together in a network, you get all kinds of crazy behaviors. Below are some of my favorite neuron-inspired designs for t-shirts. I personally own several of them and get comments wherever I go.

I'm Hyperpolarized

"I'm really not myself until I've had my cup of glutamate in the morning."

This shirt shows a neuron as "hyperpolarized" and sleepy. When a neuron is hyperpolarized, it isn't able to fire, and is essentially a quiet, sleepy cell. How cute.

The Many Moods of a Neuron

This shirt is one of my faves. It shows different types of neurons from "excited" to "inhibited", to "depressed" and "disinhibited". Each type of neuron corresponds to a particular type of input, and whether those inputs are excitatory or inhibitory.

Many to One

"All the voices in my head fill me with joy. And sometimes the desire to hurt people."

Do you see that neuron with all the inputs coming into it? He's hyperexcitable, and you can see it on his face.

Red Neuron, Blue Neuron...

An excitatory and inhibitory chain. One of these neurons is not like the others, one of these neurons is not quite the same....

Neurotransmitter T-Shirts

Little molecular messengers

Now we move to the molecular level. Neurotransmitters are the little messengers of the brain, communicating from neuron to neuron. There are a huge variety of neurotransmitters that all do very different things. The function of some of these neurotransmitters is:

Serotonin: Involved in sleep, mood and appetite. Ever wonder why turkey makes you sleepy? Tryptophan is a molecule in turkey that is converted to serotonin.

Dopamine: The neurotransmitter that is involved in the reward and pleasure centers of the brain. It also assists in movement.

Glutamate: The most abundant neurotransmitter in the brain. Glutamate is excitatory and functions in cognition, memory and many other things.

Epinephrine: This neurotransmitter is involved in mental focus and attention. It's also a hormone! As a hormone, it functions to activate the flight-or-fight response, and is present when someone is excited.

GABA: gamma Aminobutyric-acid is GABA. GABA is the major inhibitory neurotransmitter of the brain. People with not enough GABA production are often prone to seizures.

Acetylcholine: Acetylcholine is involved in learning, memory, and synaptic plasticity. It's also present when neurons communicate with muscles to make you move.

Sleepy Serotonin - "I'm Sleepy"

Serotonin is involved in sleep, mood regulation, and appetite. Love this one.

Excited Epinephrine - "I'm excited"

Epinephrine maintains mental focus and in the rest of the body keeps you alert and ready to run or fight. I wear this when I exercise. They've got a performance tee!

Gloomy GABA - "I'm Inhibited"

Nothing that a little alcohol can't fix. GABA is the inhibitory neurotransmitter of the brain. It puts other neurons to sleep. Maybe GABA is like your neighbor that tells you incredibly long, but boring stories.

Dopamine is Pleased - "I'm Pleased"

Dopamine, the neurotransmitter responsible for feeling pleasure and reward. 'nuff said.

What sites sell neuroscience t-shirts?

While there aren't that many sites that sell cool neuroscience t-shirts, these are some of the best ones out there. There are neuron t-shirts, brain t-shirts, and neurotransmitter t-shirts. They all offer something unique in terms of the t-shirts that they're selling.

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