Araya Brain Imaging, a venture founded by a group of scientists, is conducting personality assessments based on MRI scanned images of the brains of about 2,000 test subjects. The scientists also interviewed the subjects for old-fashioned personality assessments.
By comparing a new brain scan coupled with a personality test result with the patterns derived from the test subjects, the system can recognize five personality traits, including ability to cooperate, to adapt, and a tendency for negative thinking, and give them numerical scores, according to the company.
The relative sizes of different regions of brain can also be evaluated numerically.
“By providing this service, I want to prove the reliability of the system, and I am aiming for a future application of the system to support diagnosis and prevention of brain illnesses,” said cognitive neuroscientist Ryota Kanai, a Kyoto University graduate and a former associate professor of Britain’s University of Sussex, who serves as CEO of Araya Brain Imaging.
Yoshinobu Kano, an associate professor of the Faculty of Informatics, Shizuoka University, is also on the team.
Different regions of a brain have different functions, and brain morphology is unique to each individual. The scientists also said the shape of the brain differed between males and females.
After analysing the 2,000 sets of brain scans and personality assessment results through a pattern recognition program called “machine learning,” the scientists found correlations between slight variations in the shapes of people’s brains and their personal attributes.
However, they have not fully determined how or which regions of brain affect these personality traits.
The service will be free for evaluations on brain aging and size, but it will cost about 25,000 yen (US$208) for a personality assessment from the brain scan.
The scientists discovered that analyses on higher quality brain scans tend to be more accurate and in sync with the results derived from ordinary personality assessments.
The company expects to improve the accuracy of the system after it accumulates more samples.
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