When we suddenly get the answer to a riddle or understand the solution to a problem, we can practically feel the light bulb click on in our head. But what happens after the “Aha!” moment? Why do the things we learn through sudden insight tend to stick in our memory? “Much of memory research involves [...]
Most people can read texts reflected in a mirror slowly and with some effort, but a team of scientists from the Basque Centre on Cognition, Brain and Language (BCBL) has shown for the first time that we can mentally turn these images around and understand them automatically and unconsciously, at least for a few instants. [...]
Biologists at UC San Diego have identified the molecular mechanisms triggered by starvation in fruit flies that enhance the nervous system’s response to smell, allowing these insects and presumably vertebrates—including humans—to become more efficient and voracious foragers when hungry. Their discovery of the neural changes that control odor-driven food searches in flies, which they detail [...]
The first two stereo-EEG explorations in Finland were carried out by neurosurgeons of the Epilepsy surgery team in Helsinki University Central Hospital this spring. The method reinforces other examination methods already in use and opens an excellent opportunity in the exploration of the electric activity of both the surface and the deep brain structures during [...]
Simplifying cyborg circuitry using human blood Could electronic components made from human blood be the key to creating cyborg interfaces? Circuitry that links human tissues and nerve cells directly to an electronic device, such as a robotic limb or artificial eye might one day be possible thanks to the development of biological components. Writing in [...]
Indications of Alzheimer’s disease may be evident decades before first signs of cognitive impairment
Researchers at Mount Sinai School of Medicine have found that patients with Alzheimer’s disease have lower glucose utilization in the brain than those with normal cognitive function, and that those decreased levels may be detectable approximately 20 years prior to the first symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease.
There are billions of neurons in the brain and at any given time tens of thousands of these neurons might be trying to send signals to one another. Much like a person trying to be heard by his friend across a crowded room, neurons must figure out the best way to get their message heard [...]
A new study implicates microRNAs as a possible molecular switch which could contribute to a risk factor for panic disorder.
Children with Tourette syndrome could benefit from behavioural therapy to reduce their symptoms, according to a new brain imaging study. Researchers at The University of Nottingham discovered that the brains of children with Tourette syndrome (TS) develop in a unique way — which could suggest new methods of treating the condition. The study, published in [...]
Oxford University scientists have developed a new method for delivering complex drugs directly to the brain, a necessary step for treating diseases like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Motor Neuron Disease and Muscular Dystrophy. These diseases have largely resisted attempts to over the last 50 years develop new treatments, partly because of the difficulty of getting effective new [...]