A study spanning 17 years has found children born and raised in poverty had smaller subcortical brain regions, including the hippocampus, caudate, putamen, and thalamus. These brain areas also showed less growth over time.
Findings reveal how individual neurons in the thalamus can merge signals coming from different regions of the cortex. The findings could lead to new treatment options for schizophrenia, epilepsy, and other brain disorders where thalamus dysfunction is related to clinical symptoms.
Propofol, the commonly used anesthetic, alters and controls the dynamics of the brain's rhythms. The findings can help doctors better monitor patients under anesthesia with the aid of EEG.
A brain network consisting of the thalamus, anterior and posterior cingulate cortex, and angular gyri was implicated in the loss, and return, of consciousness under both anesthetic and natural sleep.
People make automatic and efficient decisions when learning to avoid others. When learning to avoid harming themselves, people make become more deliberative. The study also found people were more willing to repeat decisions that were previously harmful to themselves if they believed better results would occur in the future.
Working memory isn't confined to one area of the brain. It requires synchronous activity of at least two brain areas.
Social isolation experienced during childhood has an impact on adult brain function and behavior. Following two weeks of social isolation immediately following weaning in male mice, researchers noticed a failure in activation of medial prefrontal cortex neurons projecting to the posterior paraventricular thalamus during social exposure in adulthood. Findings suggest medial prefrontal cortex neurons required for sociability are profoundly affected by social isolation at a young age.
Mapping the thalamic reticular nucleus, researchers have identified two distinct subnetworks of neurons with different functions. Findings offer insight into more specific targets for therapeutics to alleviate some sensory, sleep, and attention symptoms associated with ASD and other disorders characterized by sensory hypersensitivity.
Auditory hallucinations, a common feature of psychosis and schizophrenia, may be the result of increased connectivity between sensory and language processing areas in the brain.