Serotonin-producing neurons in the brainstem release serotonin throughout the brain during moments of novel social encounters. The release of serotonin stimulates neurons in the medial septum via a subtype of serotonin-sensitive receptor molecules. Blocking the release of this receptor molecule prevents the formation of new social memories.
Increased accumulation of amyloid beta and a reduction of serotonin in the brains of older adults was associated with higher risks for developing depression later in life.
Prucalopride, a medication commonly prescribed to treat constipation, may help improve memory and cognition. People prescribed the drug for 6 days performed better in memory tests and had increased activity in brain areas associated with cognition.
Researchers identified specific receptors for acetylcholine that reroute information flow through memory circuits in the hippocampus. The findings could have implications for the development of drugs to help enhance or protect memory from diseases associated with cognitive decline.
Lower cholesterol levels may put people with schizophrenia at higher risk for violent behaviors, including self-harm and suicide. Researchers say lower cholesterol levels make brain cells less sensitive to serotonin, increasing symptoms of depression, impulsivity, and aggression.
A new study adds to the growing body of research linking inflammation to depression. Researchers found the molecule histamine directly inhibits the release of serotonin in the brain by attaching to inhibitory receptors on serotonin neurons in mice.
The brain regulates both eating for hunger and pleasure through serotonin-producing neurons in the midbrain, but the different types of feeding are wired by independent circuits that do not influence the other type of feeding.
A study in fruit fly models of autism reveals sleep disruption associated with the neurodevelopmental disorder is associated with elevated levels of serotonin. The origin of the higher levels of serotonin was discovered to be in glial cells in the blood-brain barrier.
PsychLight, a newly developed genetically encoded fluorescent sensor, helped researchers identify a psychedelic compound that acts on beneficial neural pathways to treat psychiatric disorders without the hallucinogenic effect.
A recent study found 42% of participants gained, on average, 29 lb of unwanted weight during the pandemic, with people gaining 1.5lb per month. Researchers say a combination of stress, hormones, and dwindling motivation to exercise during the lockdowns may be to blame.