A research team describes the entire network of brain cells that are connected to specific motor neurons controlling whisker muscles in newborn mice. A better understanding of such motor control circuits could help inform how human brains develop, potentially leading to new ways of restoring movement in people who suffer paralysis from brain injuries, or to the development of better prosthetics for limb replacement.
Neuroscientists found that astrocytes may be responsible for the rapid improvement in mood in depressed patients after acute sleep deprivation. This study identified how astrocytes can regulate a neurotransmitter involved in sleep.
A new finding turns one of the basics of neurobiology on its head, demonstrating that it is possible to turn one type of already differentiated neuron into another within the brain.
Scientists developed an implant that is able to genetically modify specific nerve cells, control them with light stimuli, and measure their electrical activity all at the same time.
Scientists used a new combination of neural imaging methods to discover how the human brain adapts to injury. The research shows that when one brain area loses functionality, a back-up team of secondary brain areas immediately activates, replacing not only the unavailable area but also its confederates.
The work will be conducted on laboratory rats modelling Parkinson’s disease. The transplanted cells will be derived from skin from an adult human and will have been “reprogrammed” as nerve cells. The light-sensitive protein is obtained from a bacterium, which uses light to gain energy.
Drinking a couple of glasses of wine each day has generally been considered a good way to promote cardiovascular and brain health. A new study indicates there is a fine line between moderate and binge drinking - a risky behavior that can decrease the making of adult brain cells by as much as 40 percent.
New research reveals the key chemical process that corrects for potential visual errors in low-light conditions. Understanding this fundamental step could lead to new treatments for visual deficits, or might one day boost normal night vision to new levels.
The Who asked “who are you?” but Dartmouth neurobiologist Jeffrey Taube “where are you?” and “where are you going?” Taube is not asking philosophical or theological questions. He is investigating nerve cells in the brain that function in establishing one’s location and direction.