Apoptosis plays a critical role in brain development as it influences the thickness of layers in the cerebral cortex, variety, and layer cell density. Alterations in how cells perform division and apoptosis lead to the development of abnormal cortical structures as seen in a variety of neurodevelopmental disorders, including autism.
People with depression often experience problems with visual perception. Researchers report issues with visual perception are likely linked to information processing differences in the cerebral cortex.
A large-scale meta-analysis reveals men and women's brains do have slight differences. However, the differences are due to brain size and not sex or gender. Researchers say brain differences between men and women are small and inconsistent once an individual's head size is accounted for.
People who suffer from obesity have stronger connections between brain areas associated with the motivation to eat and the rewarding effect of food consumption. Additionally, researchers found noted differences in the thickness of the cerebral cortex of obese test subjects.
Gray matter damage associated with multiple sclerosis progression may be caused by inflammatory reactions that lead to synaptic loss.
High resolution imaging reveals the human cerebellum is 80% of the area of the cortex. The findings indicate this area of the brain likely grew larger as human behavior and cognition evolved.
Researchers implicate the inferior frontal junction area in controlling behavior and executive function.
Brain connections strengthened with treatment from fast-acting antidepressants, such as ketamine, are consolidated during deep sleep. Researchers propose rapid antidepressant treatments share the ability to regulate both synaptic potentiation and homeostatic mechanisms, which may contribute to how the brain reorganizes its activity to defeat depression.
A worldwide scientific collaboration has produced the first genetic map of the cerebral cortex. The map identifies more than 300 genetic variants that influence cortical structure and play roles in psychiatric disorders.