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Keyword: neurology

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  • Is There a Brain Region Associated with a Belief in Social Justice?

    06/17/2014 7:31:51 PM PDT · by DogByte6RER · 28 replies
    IO9 ^ | June 17, 2014 | Anale Newiitz
    Is There a Brain Region Associated with a Belief in Social Justice? Some people believe that we could live in a just world where everybody gets what they deserve. Others believe that's impossible. Now, neuroscientists say they have evidence that the "just world hypothesis" is a cognitive bias that's connected with a specific part of the brain. This does not mean there is a "social justice center" in your brain. What neurologist Michael Schaefer and colleagues discovered is that there is a slightly different pattern of electrical impulses shooting through the brains of people who believe in a just world....
  • 5 California Children Infected by Polio-Like Illness

    02/28/2014 9:58:03 PM PST · by neverdem · 33 replies
    LiveScience.com ^ | February 23, 2014 | Cari Nierenberg
    Over a one-year period, five children in California developed a polio-like illness that caused severe weakness or paralysis in their arms and legs, a new case study reports. In two of the children, their symptoms have now been linked with an extremely rare virus called enterovirus-68. Like the poliovirus, which has been eradicated in the U.S. since 1979 thanks to the polio vaccine, strains of enterovirus in rare cases can invade and injure the spine. These are the first reported cases of polio-like symptoms being caused by enterovirus in the United States. During the last decade, outbreaks of polio-like symptoms...
  • Brain research results in better understanding of behavior

    02/16/2014 2:40:31 PM PST · by usalady · 12 replies
    Examiner ^ | February 16, 2014 | Martha
    As neuroscientists from around the world continue to unravel brain processes they include a multidisciplinary approach that goes beyond the brain cells. New research has used neurobiology and nano-scale engineering to study neural circuits and their link to behavior.
  • Literally Messing with their Brain. What Recent Scientific Studies Can Teach Us About...

    12/10/2013 3:40:51 AM PST · by markomalley · 15 replies
    Archdiocese of Washington ^ | 12/9/2013 | Msgr. Charles Pope
    In modern times there has been a tendency to downplay the differences between men and women, preferring to see whatever differences have historically existed as simply social constructs. This thinking was insisted upon by many as a kind of political correctness that must be held otherwise punishment and excoriation was sure to follow.Nevertheless, most people with common sense have always known that men and women are very different, and that these differences are not simply the result of social constructs or the way people were raised.Now scientists have made discoveries not only affirming that men and women are different, but...
  • Seizure Disorders Enter Medical Marijuana Debate

    08/14/2013 7:08:13 PM PDT · by neverdem · 13 replies
    Medscape Medical News ^ | Aug 14, 2013 | Nancy A. Melville
    The role of cannabinoids in the treatment of seizure disorders in children has come under the spotlight in recent months amid a string of media reports of parents obtaining the substances in states where medical marijuana is now legal and claiming "miraculous" reductions in seizures with the treatment. Among the reports was that of a 6-year-old boy with Dravet's syndrome, a rare form of childhood epilepsy, reported by CNN. In an interview, the parents said the boy was left immobilized by the 22 antiseizure pills a day required to control his seizures, but after treatment with a liquid, nonpsychoactive form...
  • The 'Garbage Truck' of the Human Brain: New Clues to Treating Alzheimer's

    06/28/2013 11:08:37 PM PDT · by neverdem · 14 replies
    Science World Report ^ | Jun 28, 2013 | Catherine Griffin
    The brain works like a complex machine, sending electrical signals that allow us to perceive and understand the world around us. Now, scientists have discovered a new system in this brain that acts as a "garbage truck," removing waste that might affect the brain. The findings could have large implications for treating neurological disorders like Alzheimer's disease. The body defends the brain like a fortress, ringing it with a complex system of gateways that control which molecules can enter and exit. This "blood-brain barrier" was known to exist for quite some time, but it's only now that researchers are beginning...
  • Beer's taste triggers dopamine release in brain

    04/20/2013 5:34:09 PM PDT · by Jyotishi · 55 replies
    DNA ^ | Tuesday, Apri 16, 2013 | ANI
    The taste of beer, without any effect from alcohol itself, can trigger dopamine release in the brain that is associated with drinking and other drugs of abuse, researchers have claimed. Using positron emission tomography (PET), the researchers at Indiana University School of Medicine tested 49 men with two scans, one in which they tasted beer, and the second in which they tasted Gatorade. The researchers were looking for evidence of increased levels of dopamine, a brain neurotransmitter that has long been associated with alcohol and other drugs of abuse. The scans showed significantly more dopamine activity following the taste of...
  • Two ayurvedic drugs hold out hope for Alzheimer’s patients

    04/01/2013 11:21:25 PM PDT · by Jyotishi · 43 replies
    The Indian Express ^ | Tuesday, April 2, 2013 | Pritha Chatterjee
    New Delhi - It's a disease long associated with the elderly but is now diagnosed in younger people as well and with no permanent cure available till date. However, in what could give hope to thousands suffering from Alzheimer's Disease (AD), the pharmacology department in AIIMS has identified Ayurvedic drugs which could have a role in preventing the onset of AD and also restricting its spread in affected patients. AD is a degenerative neurological disorder leading to progressive loss of cognitive abilities, including the patient's memory due to a drop in chemicals — known as neurotransmitters — which transmits messages...
  • Putting Themselves to Sleep

    11/24/2012 11:24:40 PM PST · by neverdem · 39 replies
    ScienceNOW ^ | 21 November 2012 | Greg Miller
    Enlarge Image Self-medicated. A new study suggests that some people suffer from excessive sleepiness due to a naturally occurring compound that acts like a sedative. Credit: Digital Vision/Thinkstock Hitting the wall in the middle of a busy work day is nothing unusual, and a caffeine jolt is all it takes to snap most of us back into action. But people with certain sleep disorders battle a powerful urge to doze throughout the day, even after sleeping 10 hours or more at night. For them, caffeine doesn't touch the problem, and more potent prescription stimulants aren't much better. Now, a...
  • The Hazards of Growing Up Painlessly

    11/24/2012 10:31:19 PM PST · by neverdem · 14 replies
    NY Times Magazine ^ | November 15, 2012 | JUSTIN HECKERT
    The girl who feels no pain was in the kitchen, stirring ramen noodles, when the spoon slipped from her hand and dropped into the pot of boiling water. It was a school night; the TV was on in the living room, and her mother was folding clothes on the couch. Without thinking, Ashlyn Blocker reached her right hand in to retrieve the spoon, then took her hand out of the water and stood looking at it under the oven light. She walked a few steps to the sink and ran cold water over all her faded white scars, then called...
  • Vegetative man tells doctors ‘I’m not in pain’ via MRI communication

    11/14/2012 6:20:31 AM PST · by NYer · 67 replies
    Yahoo ^ | November 14, 2012 | Eric Pfeiffer
    More than 12 years after a car accident left him in a vegetative state, a Canadian man has begun communicating with doctors who are monitoring his brain activity through Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) scans. The BBC reports that 39-year-old Scott Routley has been able to communicate to doctors that he is not in any pain, marking the first time an uncommunicative, severely brain-damaged patient has been able to give direct answers regarding their care and treatment."Scott has been able to show he has a conscious, thinking mind," British neuroscientist Adrian Owen told the BBC. "We have scanned him several...
  • Neuroscience Reveals Brain Differences Between Republicans and Democrats (Barf Alert)

    11/01/2012 10:32:37 AM PDT · by lbryce · 29 replies
    Science Daily ^ | Novembr 1, 2012 | Staff
    Full Title:This Is Your Brain On Politics: Neuroscience Reveals Brain Differences Between Republicans and Democrats ScienceDaily (Nov. 1, 2012) — New research from the University of South Carolina provides fresh evidence that choosing a candidate may depend largely on our biological make-up. That's because the brains of self-identified Democrats and Republicans are hard-wired differently and may be naturally inclined to hold varying, if not opposing, perceptions and values. This study showed a strong link with broad social connectedness with Democrats, and a strong link with tight social connectedness with Republicans. With the U.S. presidential election just days away, new research...
  • Drug 'may prevent stroke damage'

    10/08/2012 9:08:55 AM PDT · by Silentgypsy · 19 replies
    BBC News ^ | 10/07/2012 | Unattributed
    It may be possible to use a drug to prevent some of the lasting and crippling damage caused by a stroke, according to doctors in the US and Canada. A safety trial, published in the Lancet Neurology medical journal, suggested the chemical NA-1 was safe to use. The study on 185 people also hinted that patients given the drug developed fewer regions of damaged brain tissue. The Stroke Association said that it was promising, but needed more research. Tests in primates had suggested NA-1 prevented brain cells dying when a stroke starved them of oxygen.
  • How Blasts Injure the Brain

    08/04/2012 2:01:57 PM PDT · by neverdem · 7 replies
    ScienceNOW ^ | 22 July 2011 | Greg Miller
    Enlarge Image Occupational hazard. A new study provides clues about the cellular mechanisms of traumatic brain injury, a signature injury of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Credit: Adrees Latif/Reuters According to some estimates, more than 300,000 United States troops have suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI) in the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Most of these injuries have resulted from blasts from roadside bombs and other explosives planted by insurgents. The lack of knowledge about how an explosive blast injures the brain has hampered efforts to treat these injuries. Now, two studies offer a potentially important insight,...
  • Cocaine May Age the Brain

    04/28/2012 4:27:41 PM PDT · by neverdem · 32 replies
    ScienceNOW ^ | 24 April 2012 | Elizabeth Norton
    Enlarge Image Old beyond years. A 3D model of merged imaging scans shows the brain areas affected by age (blue) in healthy people (left) and longterm cocaine users (right). Credit: Karen Ersche/University of Cambridge Add this to the list of reasons not to take cocaine: Chronic use of the drug may speed up the aging process. According to a new imaging study, cocaine abusers in their 30s and 40s show brain changes more commonly seen in people over 60. The finding also calls attention to the special medical needs of older drug users—a group that, until now, hasn't garnered...
  • Decoding the Brain’s Cacophony

    11/04/2011 2:52:30 PM PDT · by neverdem · 5 replies
    NY Times ^ | October 31, 2011 | BENEDICT CAREY
    ST. HELENA, Calif. — The scientists exchanged one last look and held their breath. Everything was ready. The electrode was in place, threaded between the two hemispheres of a living cat’s brain; the instruments were tuned to pick up the chatter passing from one half to the other. The only thing left was to listen for that electronic whisper, the brain’s own internal code. The amplifier hissed — the three scientists expectantly leaning closer — and out it came, loud and clear. “We all live in a yellow submarine, yellow submarine, yellow submarine ....” “The Beatles’ song! We somehow picked...
  • A Drink a Day May Keep Alzheimer's Away (Analysis of 143 studies shows risk decreased by 23%)

    08/26/2011 12:49:36 PM PDT · by Stoat · 47 replies
    Medscape Medical News ^ | August 26, 2011 | Fran Lowry
    A Drink a Day May Keep Alzheimer's Away Fran Lowry   August 26, 2011 — Light to moderate drinking seems to reduce the risk for dementia and cognitive decline, according to a new study published in the August issue of Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment. A meta-analysis of 143 studies on the effects of alcohol on the brain showed that moderate drinking, defined as no more than 2 drinks a day for a man and no more than 1 drink a day for a woman, reduced the risk for Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia by 23%. "It doesn't seem...
  • Bachmann Migraine Story Underscores Lingering Stigma

    07/22/2011 1:29:50 PM PDT · by Stoat · 46 replies
    Medscape Today ^ | July 22, 2011 | Nancy A. Melville
    Bachmann Migraine Story Underscores Lingering Stigma Nancy A. Melville July 22, 2011 — In a summer of unusually heated political turmoil and mudslinging from both sides of the aisle, the medical issue that has unexpectedly become caught in the crossfire seems somehow appropriate — migraines, and specifically, Rep. Michele Bachmann's migraines.The GOP presidential candidate's migraines became big news this week following a report on the Daily Caller Web site that an adviser to Representative Bachmann (R-Minnesota) said the congresswoman suffers from "intense" migraines, that when she gets them "she can't function at all," and she "takes all sorts of pills" for...
  • It's Partly in Your Head - Sandra Witelson on how male and female brains differ

    04/13/2011 9:23:54 AM PDT · by neverdem · 21 replies
    Wall Street Journal ^ | Aprill 11, 2011 | Rebecca Blumenstein
    Sandra Witelson has spent much of her career studying the relationship between brain structure and function, and the differences in these between men and women. A neuroscientist from the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Dr. Witelson has assembled a massive collection of brains for research and is known for studying Albert Einstein's brain and what made it unique. She sat down with The Wall Street Journal's Rebecca Blumenstein to discuss how brain differences can affect the skills, behavior, thinking and aspirations of men and women, and how that might relate to their careers....
  • Laboratory studies show promise for new multiple sclerosis treatment

    11/18/2010 11:04:50 AM PST · by decimon · 5 replies
    University of Colorado at Boulder ^ | November 18, 2010 | Unknown
    Successfully treating and reversing the effects of multiple sclerosis, or MS, may one day be possible using a drug originally developed to treat chronic pain, according to Distinguished Professor Linda Watkins of the University of Colorado at Boulder. Watkins and her colleagues in CU-Boulder's department of psychology and neuroscience discovered that a single injection of a compound called ATL313 -- an anti-inflammatory drug being developed to treat chronic pain -- stopped the progression of MS-caused paralysis in rats for weeks at a time. Lisa Loram, a senior research associate who spearheaded the project in Watkins' laboratory, presented the findings at...
  • Taking Early Retirement May Retire Memory, Too

    10/22/2010 11:36:58 PM PDT · by neverdem · 19 replies
    NY Tmes ^ | October 11, 2010 | GINA KOLATA
    The two economists call their paper “Mental Retirement,” and their argument has intrigued behavioral researchers. Data from the United States, England and 11 other European countries suggest that the earlier people retire, the more quickly their memories decline. The implication, the economists and others say, is that there really seems to be something to the “use it or lose it” notion — if people want to preserve their memories and reasoning abilities, they may have to keep active. “It’s incredibly interesting and exciting,” said Laura L. Carstensen, director of the Center on Longevity at Stanford University. “It suggests that work...
  • Synthesis via paths less travelled (Marijuana receptors appear to serve a necessary function.)

    04/20/2010 12:29:38 AM PDT · by neverdem · 35 replies · 717+ views
    Highlights in Chemical Biology ^ | 15 April 2010 | Philippa Ross
    US scientists have demonstrated the existence of undiscovered chemical pathways to an important class of bioactive lipids in the nervous system. Endocannabinoids are lipid messengers that play a key role in both central and peripheral tissues, where they participate in diverse physiological processes including appetite, pain-sensation, mood, and memory. Unlike other neurotransmitters such as amino acids and neuropeptides, they are not water soluble so cannot be stored in the body and are made on-demand from phospholipid precursors involving complex multiple pathways. A complete understanding of these mechanisms is crucial to understanding their effects in mammalian physiology, explains Benjamin Cravatt and Gabriel Simon at...
  • Humans Have Hidden Sensory System

    12/23/2009 9:55:21 PM PST · by neverdem · 56 replies · 1,947+ views
    LiveScience ^ | 08 December 2009 | Staff
    The human body may be equipped with a separate sensory system aside from the nerves that gives us the ability to touch and feel, according to a new study. Most of us have millions of different types of nerve endings just beneath the skin that let us feel our surroundings. However, the once-hidden and recently discovered skin sense, found in two patients, is located throughout the blood vessels and sweat glands, and most of us don’t even notice it’s there. “It’s almost like hearing the subtle sound of a single instrument in the midst of a symphony,” said senior author...
  • At the Bridge Table, Clues to a Lucid Old Age

    05/22/2009 8:06:24 PM PDT · by JoeProBono · 13 replies · 883+ views
    times. ^ | May 21, 2009 | BENEDICT CAREY
    LAGUNA WOODS, Calif. — The ladies in the card room are playing bridge, and at their age the game is no hobby. It is a way of life, a daily comfort and challenge, the last communal campfire before all goes dark. “We play for blood,” says Ruth Cummins, 92, before taking a sip of Red Bull at a recent game. “It’s what keeps us going,” adds Georgia Scott, 99. “It’s where our closest friends are.” In recent years scientists have become intensely interested in what could be called a super memory club — the fewer than one in 200 of...
  • For Mature Audiences Only

    07/21/2009 12:07:21 AM PDT · by neverdem · 75 replies · 2,626+ views
    American Thinker ^ | July 21, 2009 | Randy Fardal
    Almost four decades ago, the 26th Amendment lowered the US voting age to 18.  At the time, most neurologists believed that the human brain was fully developed by about age 12, so allowing Americans to vote at 18 seemed like a safe move. But parents of teenagers knew that was nonsense, and new research is confirming those parental observations.  Since the voting age was lowered in 1971, scientific advancements such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) allowed researchers to get detailed three-dimensional images of developing brains. Although human brains typically reach their adult size by age 12, they are far from...
  • A Chance for Clues to Brain Injury in Combat Blasts

    06/23/2009 2:07:26 AM PDT · by neverdem · 7 replies · 669+ views
    NY Times ^ | June 23, 2009 | ALAN SCHWARZ
    No direct impact caused Paul McQuigg’s brain injury in Iraq three years ago. And no wound from the incident visibly explains why Mr. McQuigg, now an office manager at a California Marine base, can get lost in his own neighborhood or arrive at the grocery store having forgotten why he left home. But his blast injury — concussive brain trauma caused by an explosion’s invisible force waves — is no less real to him than a missing limb is to other veterans. Just how real could become clearer after he dies, when doctors slice up his brain to examine any...
  • New test can detect early Alzheimer's: study

    03/16/2009 10:07:33 PM PDT · by george76 · 12 replies · 772+ views
    Reuters ^ | Mar 16, 2009 | Julie Steenhuysen Julie Steenhuysen
    A new test can accurately detect Alzheimer's disease in its earliest stages, before dementia symptoms surface and widespread damage occurs, U.S. researchers said on Monday. The test, which measures proteins in spinal fluid that can point to Alzheimer's, was 87 percent accurate at predicting which patients with early memory problems and other symptoms of cognitive impairment would eventually be diagnosed with Alzheimer's, they said. "With this test, we can reliably detect and track the progression of Alzheimer's disease," said Leslie Shaw of the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, whose study appears in the Annals of Neurology. Such tests, which...
  • 'Brain decline' begins at age 27

    03/16/2009 7:34:32 PM PDT · by neverdem · 44 replies · 1,019+ views
    BBC NEWS ^ | 2009/03/16 | NA
    Mental powers start to dwindle at 27 after peaking at 22, marking the start of old age, US research suggests. Professor Timothy Salthouse of Virginia University found reasoning, speed of thought and spatial visualisation all decline in our late 20s. Therapies designed to stall or reverse the ageing process may need to start much earlier, he said. His seven-year study of 2,000 healthy people aged 18-60 is published in the journal Neurobiology of Aging. To test mental agility, the study participants had to solve puzzles, recall words and story details and spot patterns in letters and symbols. The same tests...
  • Swedish authorities embroiled in furore over academic freedom - Journal removes paper from...

    02/17/2009 6:39:16 PM PST · by neverdem · 2 replies · 451+ views
    Nature News ^ | 16 February 2009 | Natasha Gilbert
    Journal removes paper from website after company threatens legal action. Lie detection — an emotional issue. The Swedish Research Council is wading into an escalating row over academic freedom after a peer-reviewed journal removed a published paper — penned by two Swedish academics — from its website following a threat of legal action from the company whose technology the research criticized.The controversial paper1, entitled 'Charlatanry in forensic speech science: a problem to be taken seriously', was first published in the International Journal of Speech, Language and the Law in December 2007. In it, speech scientists Francisco Lacerda of Stockholm University...
  • Men really do see half naked women as 'objects', scientists claim (Neurology)

    02/16/2009 12:54:10 PM PST · by GOPGuide · 89 replies · 5,434+ views
    Daily Telegraph ^ | 16 Feb 2009 | Richard Alleyne
    Researchers scanned the brains of certain men as they looked at a photograph of a woman in a bikini and discovered that sections of the brain that usually reacted to objects lit up. With men, who were known to have sexist tendencies, they also discovered that a part of the brain that usually turned on during social interaction actually de-activated when they saw the photograph. Professor Susan Fiske, of Princeton University, told the American Association for the Advancement of Science annual meeting that she believes that the results show that some men did not see sexualised women as a "human"....
  • Heroes are born not made, scientists claim (Neurology)

    02/16/2009 11:22:26 AM PST · by GOPGuide · 20 replies · 806+ views
    Telegraph ^ | 16 Feb 2009 | Richard Alleyne
    snip "There are some individuals who when confronted with extreme stress their hormone profile is rather unique," he said. "It doesn't reach the same peak as the rest of us. So we're all ready to scream in our chairs, but there are certain individuals who just don't get as stressed. "Their stress hormones are lower and the peptides that down-regulate that stress are higher, so you can see in action the hormonal regular system really hitting overdrive. "Certain people are cooler under pressure and they perform very, very well during these periods of time." Professor Aikins, who outlined his findings...
  • Diabetes can slow the brain, study finds

    01/01/2009 8:01:15 AM PST · by neverdem · 3 replies · 745+ views
    Reuters ^ | Dec 31, 2008 | Maggie Fox
    WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Diabetes can slow the brain, causing trouble with two types of mental processing in adults of all ages, Canadian researchers reported on Wednesday. Healthy adults did significantly better than diabetics on two tests of mental functioning -- executive functioning and speed of response, the team at the University of Alberta found. "Speed and executive functioning are thought to be among the major components of cognitive health," Roger Dixon, who worked on the study, said in a statement. Executive functioning includes the ability to focus, work with new information to solve problems and to give thoughtful answers to...
  • Brain signals revive paralyzed muscles in monkeys

    10/15/2008 1:53:53 PM PDT · by neverdem · 11 replies · 610+ views
    San Luis Obispo Tribune ^ | Oct. 15, 2008 | MALCOLM RITTER
    AP Science Writer Monkeys taught to play a computer game were able to overcome wrist paralysis with an experimental device that might lead to new treatments for patients with stroke and spinal cord injury. Remarkably, the monkeys regained use of paralyzed muscles by learning to control the activity of just a single brain cell. The result is "an important step forward," said Dawn Taylor of Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, who studies the concept of using brain signals to overcome paralysis. She wasn't involved in the new work. The device monitored the activity of a brain cell and used...
  • Unconscious Brain Still Registers Pain

    10/09/2008 9:49:45 PM PDT · by neverdem · 11 replies · 1,928+ views
    ScienceNOW Daily News ^ | 9 October 2008 | Greg Miller
    Enlarge ImageAltered perceptions? Minimally conscious patients may have a greater capacity to feel pain than do those in a vegetative state (such as Terri Schiavo, above).Credit: Reuters Most of the time, doctors have a simple way to determine if a patient needs pain medication: They ask. But when a brain injury renders someone unable to respond to questions, the right course of action becomes murkier. Now a study finds that the brains of some patients with brain injuries respond to an unpleasant electrical shock much as do the brains of healthy people, suggesting that these patients may feel pain...
  • Musicians Use Both Sides Of Their Brains More Frequently Than Average People

    10/05/2008 8:26:28 PM PDT · by TigerLikesRooster · 29 replies · 868+ views
    Science Daily ^ | 10/03/08
    Musicians Use Both Sides Of Their Brains More Frequently Than Average People ScienceDaily (Oct. 3, 2008) — Supporting what many of us who are not musically talented have often felt, new research reveals that trained musicians really do think differently than the rest of us. Vanderbilt University psychologists have found that professionally trained musicians more effectively use a creative technique called divergent thinking, and also use both the left and the right sides of their frontal cortex more heavily than the average person. The research by Crystal Gibson, Bradley Folley and Sohee Park is currently in press at the journal...
  • Gender differences seen in brain connections

    09/08/2008 11:40:49 PM PDT · by neverdem · 8 replies · 254+ views
    NewScientist.com news service ^ | 08 September 2008 | Alison Motluk
    Human brains appear to come in at least two flavours: male and female. Now variations in the density of the synapses that connect neurons may help to explain differences in how men and women think. Even when intelligence levels are equal, women and men excel at different cognitive tasks. But although brain size and neuron density differ between the sexes, these don't seem to correlate with cognitive differences. So, Javier DeFelipe at Complutense University in Madrid, Spain, and colleagues counted the number of synapses instead. The brain tissue they analysed came from the left temporal cortex, a region of the...
  • For the Brain, Remembering Is Like Reliving

    09/05/2008 11:34:43 AM PDT · by neverdem · 12 replies · 217+ views
    NY Times ^ | September 5, 2008 | BENEDICT CAREY
    Scientists have for the first time recorded individual brain cells in the act of summoning a spontaneous memory, revealing not only where a remembered experience is registered but also, in part, how the brain is able to recreate it. The recordings, taken from the brains of epilepsy patients being prepared for surgery, demonstrate that these spontaneous memories reside in some of the same neurons that fired most furiously when the recalled event had been experienced. Researchers had long theorized as much but until now had only indirect evidence. Experts said the study had all but closed the case: For the...
  • War Veterans’ Concussions Are Often Overlooked

    08/26/2008 9:19:33 PM PDT · by neverdem · 6 replies · 303+ views
    NY Times ^ | August 26, 2008 | LIZETTE ALVAREZ
    Former Staff Sgt. Kevin Owsley is not quite sure what rattled his brain in 2004: the roadside bomb that exploded about a yard from his Humvee or the rocket-propelled grenade that flung him across a road as he walked to a Porta Potti on base six weeks later. After each attack, he did what so many soldiers do in Iraq. He shrugged off his ailments — headaches, dizzy spells, persistent ringing in his ears and numbness in his right arm — chalking them up to fatigue or dehydration. Given that he never lost consciousness, he figured the discomfort would work...
  • Memory, depression, insomnia -- and worms?

    08/05/2008 6:43:46 PM PDT · by neverdem · 9 replies · 221+ views
    physorg.com ^ | Aug 5, 2008 | NA
    Researchers have spent decades probing the causes of depression, schizophrenia and insomnia in humans. But a new study may have uncovered key insights into the origins of these and other conditions by examining a most unlikely research subject: worms. The project, which was led by Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation scientist Kenneth Miller, Ph.D., examined the way eye-less microscopic worms known as C. elegans shy away from certain kinds of light. The researchers made several key findings, chief among them that exposing paralyzed C. elegans to ultraviolet light restored normal levels of movement in the worms. Miller's group at OMRF traced...
  • Scientists Identify the Brain’s Activity Hub

    07/01/2008 8:05:21 PM PDT · by neverdem · 18 replies · 904+ views
    NY Times ^ | July 1, 2008 | BENEDICT CAREY
    The outer layer of the brain, the reasoning, planning and self-aware region known as the cerebral cortex, has a central clearinghouse of activity below the crown of the head that is widely connected to more-specialized regions in a large network similar to a subway map, scientists reported Monday. The new report, published in the free-access online journal PLoS Biology, provides the most complete rough draft to date of the cortex’s electrical architecture, the cluster of interconnected nodes and hubs that help guide thinking and behavior. The paper also provides a striking demonstration of how new imaging techniques focused on the...
  • Malignant Gliomas Affect About 10,000 Americans Annually

    05/20/2008 4:21:18 PM PDT · by Joiseydude · 23 replies · 213+ views
    Washington Post ^ | Tuesday, May 20, 2008 | Rob Stein
    About 10,000 Americans are diagnosed each year with malignant gliomas, the kind of tumor that Sen. Edward Kennedy is fighting, according to the National Cancer Institute. Only about half are alive a year after being diagnosed, and only about 25 percent survive two years, said Robert Laureno, chief of neurology at the Washington Hospital Center. "In general, it's a very grim kind of prognosis," he said.
  • Case Closed for Free Will?

    04/17/2008 12:12:15 AM PDT · by neverdem · 20 replies · 347+ views
    ScienceNOW Daily News ^ | 14 April 2008 | Elsa Youngsteadt
    Coffee or tea with lunch? Which pants to wear to work? Which movie to watch? Your mind might be made up before you know it. Researchers have found patterns of brain activity that predict people's decisions up to 10 seconds before they're aware they've made a choice. In the 1980s, psychologist Benjamin Libet of the University of California, San Francisco, caught people's brains jumping the gun on consciousness. A few hundred milliseconds before a person thought he or she decided to press a button, brain areas related to movement were already active. The result was hard for some to stomach...
  • Lost in Translation (Chinese and English speaking dyslexics have differences in brain anatomy.)

    04/11/2008 2:06:32 AM PDT · by neverdem · 18 replies · 93+ views
    ScienceNOW Daily News ^ | 8 April 2008 | Constance Holden
    All dyslexics are not alike. According to new research, Chinese- and English-speaking people with the disorder have impairments in different regions of their brains. The findings shed light on the neurological basis of dyslexia and reveal fundamental differences in how brains process the two languages. Dyslexics, about 5% to 10% of the population in both the United States and China, have trouble making the connection between the sight and sound of a word. In English, this results in word distortions or transpositions of letters. "Dyslexia," for example, might be read as "Lysdexia." In Chinese, the problem can affect how a...
  • Tighten Your Belt, Strengthen Your Mind

    04/03/2008 8:45:36 PM PDT · by neverdem · 21 replies · 108+ views
    NY Times ^ | April 2, 2008 | SANDRA AAMODT and SAM WANG
    DECLINING house prices, rising job layoffs, skyrocketing oil costs and a major credit crunch have brought consumer confidence to its lowest point in five years. With a relatively long recession looking increasingly likely, many American families may be planning to tighten their belts. Interestingly, restraining our consumer spending, in the short term, may cause us to actually loosen the belts around our waists. What’s the connection? The brain has a limited capacity for self-regulation, so exerting willpower in one area often leads to backsliding in others. The good news, however, is that practice increases willpower capacity, so that in the...
  • Taking Play Seriously

    02/17/2008 5:52:09 PM PST · by neverdem · 4 replies · 277+ views
    NY Times ^ | February 17, 2008 | ROBIN MARANTZ HENIG
    On a drizzly Tuesday night in late January, 200 people came out to hear a psychiatrist talk rhapsodically about play — not just the intense, joyous play of children, but play for all people, at all ages, at all times. (All species too; the lecture featured touching photos of a polar bear and a husky engaging playfully at a snowy outpost in northern Canada.) Stuart Brown, president of the National Institute for Play, was speaking at the New York Public Library’s main branch on 42nd Street. He created the institute in 1996, after more than 20 years of psychiatric practice...
  • Vets Focus On Neurological Disorders In Dogs, Humans

    01/29/2008 2:26:35 PM PST · by blam · 1 replies · 434+ views
    Science Daily ^ | 1-29-2008 | University of Missouri.
    Vets Focus On Neurological Disorders In Dogs, HumansParkinson's disease and epilepsy strike millions of people each year. They also affect countless dogs. (Credit: iStockphoto/Greg Henry) ScienceDaily (Jan. 29, 2008) — Parkinson's disease and epilepsy strike millions of people each year. They also affect countless dogs, and veterinarians at the University of Missouri are working to find ways to treat these and other neurological diseases in both species. Dennis O'Brien, professor of veterinary medicine and surgery and director of the comparative neurology program in the College of Veterinary Medicine, and a team of researchers are investigating the causes and potential treatments...
  • The Hangover That Lasts

    12/29/2007 10:23:09 PM PST · by neverdem · 143 replies · 261+ views
    NY Times ^ | December 29, 2007 | PAUL STEINBERG
    NEW Year’s Eve tends to be the day of the year with the most binge drinking (based on drunken driving fatalities), followed closely by Super Bowl Sunday. Likewise, colleges have come to expect that the most alcohol-filled day of their students’ lives is their 21st birthday. So, some words of caution for those who continue to binge and even for those who have stopped: just as the news is not so great for former cigarette smokers, there is equally bad news for recovering binge-drinkers who have achieved a sobriety that has lasted years. The more we have binged — and...
  • The Theory of Moral Neuroscience

    11/22/2007 11:04:02 PM PST · by neverdem · 36 replies · 210+ views
    Reason ^ | November 21, 2007 | Ronald Bailey
    Modern brain science is confirming an 18th century philosopher's moral theories"As we have no immediate experience of what other men feel, we can form no idea of the manner in which they are affected, but by conceiving what we ourselves should feel in the like situation," observed British philosopher and economist Adam Smith in the first chapter of his magisterial The Theory of Moral Sentiments (1759). "Whatever is the passion which arises from any object in the person principally concerned, an analogous emotion springs up, at the thought of his situation, in the breast of every attentive spectator." Smith's argument...
  • Study provides first evidence of neural link between sleep loss and psychiatric disorders

    10/22/2007 10:35:47 AM PDT · by crazyshrink · 50 replies · 86+ views
    National Institutes of Health, American Academy of Sleep Medicine ^ | 10/22/07 | University of California - Berkeley
    Berkeley -- It has long been assumed that sleep deprivation can play havoc with our emotions. This is notably apparent in soldiers in combat zones, medical residents and even new parents. Now there's a neurological basis for this theory, according to new research from the University of California, Berkeley, and Harvard Medical School. In the first neural investigation into what happens to the emotional brain without sleep, results from a brain imaging study suggest that while a good night's rest can regulate your mood and help you cope with the next day's emotional challenges, sleep deprivation does the opposite by...
  • New treatment promising for Parkinson's

    06/21/2007 9:28:57 PM PDT · by neverdem · 362+ views
    Seattle Post-Intelligencer ^ | June 21, 2007 | MALCOLM RITTER
    AP SCIENCE WRITER NEW YORK -- An experimental treatment for Parkinson's disease seemed to improve symptoms - dramatically so, for one 59-year-old man - without causing side effects in an early study of a dozen patients. The gene therapy treatment involved slipping billions of copies of a gene into the brain to calm overactive brain circuitry. The small study focused on testing the safety of the procedure rather than its effectiveness, and experts cautioned it's too soon to draw conclusions about how well it works. But they called the results promising and said the approach merits further studies. "We still...