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Preview: Scitizen Neuroscience

Scitizen Neuroscience



Neuroscience : a collaborative news publishing initiative by scientists, for everyone.



Copyright: Copyright 2008, Take part Media, Inc.
 



Alzheimer's Breakthrough Treatment?

2008-08-04 08:18:36

People suffering early and moderate Alzheimer's have great reason for hope today as a new medication appears to materially impact of the disease in Stage II human trials.



Hell in a handbasket?

2008-06-24 11:35:35

So what is information technology doing to our brains? Neuroscientist Susan Greenfield has written a book about the upside and the downside of a world full of email and other instant electronic communication, video and online games, and the vast, beckoning,...



Unconscious Decisions in the Brain

2008-04-23 11:32:13

Already several seconds before we consciously make a decision its outcome can be predicted from unconscious activity in the brain.



Food Reward in the Absence of Taste Receptor Signaling

2008-04-10 16:40:46

It is well accepted that palatability, or the property of being pleasurable to the sense of taste, is a major factor leading to the overconsumption of caloric foods. However, is it possible that food preferences might be influenced, on the long run,...



Novel Pathway Required for Normals Reproductive Development

2008-04-08 14:34:09

Gene defects cause infertility, lack of sense of smell in humans and mice



Beauty and the Brain

2007-11-28 11:24:00

What makes a work of art beautiful?



Nervous Conduction of Excitation Without Action Potentials

2007-10-03 12:08:44

The functioning of neuronal networks involves the conduction of excitation along the axon which is the wire-like part of the neuron. This excitation was hitherto held to rely only on an electric phenomenon, the action potential, triggered by transient modifications in the concentration of ions from each...



'Slowed Brain-Activity' in Frequent Mobile Phone Users

2007-09-20 12:47:30

The present study employs standardized data acquired from the Brain Resource International Database to study the relationship between mobile phone (GSM) usage, personality and brain function (N=300). Based on the frequency and duration of mobile phone usage, three groups were formed...



What our Eyes Get up to When We Read

2007-09-17 11:35:03

In this article I briefly discuss some recent research from our laboratory that investigated how we coordinate our eyes binocularly when we read. Our experiments showed that on about half of the fixations a reader makes the eyes fixate on average two letters apart...



New Research Gives Insight into Biological Mechanisms Involved in Cerebral Aneurysms

2007-09-14 13:02:15

Research using single gene knockout mice has led to a finding which confirms the importance of nitric oxide biochemistry in the formation of cerebral aneurysms. This is the first study which has directly demonstrated that genetically controlled defects in nitric oxide metabolism can promote the formation...



The Claim: Politically Liberal Brains are Better at Handling Change

2007-09-13 15:04:56

A recent report in Nature Neuroscience has gotten a lot of press. The headlines proclaim that "left-wing" brains are different from "right wing" brains. Are our brains literally hard-wired to be conservative or liberal?



Higher Social Skills Are Uniquely Human

2007-09-06 20:02:28

A new study published today in Science reports that humans have distinctive social skills. Esther Herrmann, lead author of the study, answers Scitizen's questions.



New Insights into Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

2007-09-06 12:57:58

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a common debilitating psychiatric disorder, yet the cause of OCD is unknown and few effective treatments are available. A recent study of mutant mice reveals a novel mechanism leading to OCD-like behaviors in mice and suggests potential new therapeutic strategies...



Miswired memory networks in developmental disorders

2007-09-04 14:14:08

Developmental disorders including Down syndrome and Fragile X syndrome share the symptom of impaired memory. Theories on the origins of these disorders focus on the points of communication between neurons in the brain, called synapses. The effectiveness of synapses in communicating information between...



Finding the Best Way to Train Older Brains

2007-09-03 13:30:45

Memory training programs are becoming popular, but do they work for everyone? The bad news is that the older we get, the less likely we are to show improvements from training. Researchers at the University of Michigan are working to understand why this happens,...



Scientists Discover ?Volume Control? for Connections between Brain Regions

2007-08-29 12:59:01

Nerve axons, the hair-like processes that connect brain regions, have been likened to telephone wires in that they faithfully relay information without altering it. However, a recent study shows that, contrary to previous thinking, the information being relayed may be increased or decreased by neurotransmitters...



A Robot Controlled by a Simulated Rat Brain

2007-08-20 11:09:45

For a long time scientists have been quite intrigued by the rat?s ability to perform spatial tasks such as maze solving. Rats can combine scent and visual cues from the environment with their own sequence of body motions to recall a trajectory previously navigated...



Learning a Second Language: Is It All In the Head?

2007-08-08 11:20:31

Learning a foreign language can be quite difficult for some. In a world of hundreds of languages much of it can end up sounding like Greek. Being able to predict an ability (or lack thereof) to grasp a language may help learners and instructors make sense of it all.



Word Learning in Children

2007-08-03 10:59:35

Bob McMurray is a speech learning specialist. He explains his study on children's word aquisition ability and how this relates to learning in general.



Controlling the Kids with Chemicals

2007-07-30 10:20:27

Honey bee queens control their offspring with chemicals (pheromones), but how these chemicals work has largely remained a mystery. Alison Mercer and her research team at the University of Otago, New Zealand have discovered that exposing young worker bees to queen pheromone alters the chemistry of the...



Spot the Difference: How Do Brains Tell one Place from Another?

2007-07-25 17:11:44

Our brains are continuously bombarded by shifting patterns of sensory inputs evoked by our environment. Even subtle changes in these patterns need to be noticed, and recent work has highlighted the importance of a specific protein in a specific subset of neurons in rapidly encoding these changes.



New Drugs Offer Stroke Treatment by Changing Activity of DNA

2007-07-19 10:59:43

The discovery of small molecules that act as inhibitors of enzymes, small machines in cells, that are involved in the chemical modification of proteins around which the DNA in cells is wrapped, offers an entirely new way of creating drugs.



Are Men as Talkative as Women?

2007-07-16 14:51:34

Yes, according to a USA Today article on a study that says that both sexes speak about 16,000 words a day.



Make Assurance Double Sure ? Dual Networks for Behavioral Control

2007-07-09 14:01:44

The ability to exercise voluntary control over one?s own actions forms a central aspect of what it means to be human. The number of possible responses we can produce to a given stimulus is essentially infinite. For example, dependent on someone?s internal goals, a stimulus such as ?word?...



The Neuroscience of Decision-making

2007-07-05 11:54:51

We often make decisions based on imperfect information from a variety of potentially conflicting sources. A new experiment reveals how monkeys and their brains solve such problems. By measuring the electrical activity from neurons in the brain,...



Focusing on attention

2007-06-29 15:15:38

There are many things in the world around us, too many for the brain to process in detail at the same time. A lot of these things, however, are not always important to us. Ideally, we would spend more time and resources processing the important things and less time on the rest...



The Political Brain

2007-06-29 15:15:10

A recent brain-imaging study shows that our political predilections are a product of unconscious confirmation bias. Psychologist Drew Westen, lead author of the study, discusses here the "dispassionate" view of mind, and how it has failed Democratic candidates.



Hope For Parkinson Patients

2007-06-29 15:14:43

This is CBS News on a new gene therapy treatment for the incurable brain disorder that affects millions of Americans.



Seduction by Neuroscience: Resisting the Allure

2007-06-25 16:43:22

At Professor Adam Kolber's Neuroethics & Law Blog, I learned of a new article now in press at the Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience. Access "The seductive allure of neuroscience explanations" here at the Web site of lead author Deena Skolnick Weisberg.



Explaining the Relation Between Birth Order and Intelligence

2007-06-22 17:04:50

The purposes of our study were to quantify the size of a birth order effect on IQ, if any, and to provide evidence that could support or oppose prevailing theories.