Just in case you thought we had it all figured out, we don't. New research shows that the spinal cord uses networks similar to the brain to learn and think. While the new research sheds some light on the "thinkingness" of the spinal cord, chiropractors have been treating the spinal cord for 100 years for very good reason--the spine is the most malleable part of the nervous system outside of the brain. The chiropractic adjustment not only decreases pain and increases range of motion; it trains your nervous system. This is evident in many changes following an adjustment; increased coordination and strength in the area adjusted, changes in immune function throughout the body, and changes in speed and coordination throughout the body.
Also remember that your heart and your gastrointestinal and immune systems have complex networks of neurons that can work independantly of your brain. In the words of Deepak Chopra, the brain is no longer confined to the head, it has escaped!
Read an abstract of the study here.