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Preview: Nature Reviews Neuroscience - Issue - science feeds

Nature Reviews Neuroscience


Learning and memory: Consolidation circuitry


A new study in mice shows that memory engram cells associated with long-term memories form in the prefrontal cortex early during learning in a contextual fear conditioning paradigm and reveals details of the circuitry involved in long-term memory consolidation.

Navigation: Sounds like non-spatial navigation


Neurons in the hippocampus and entorhinal cortex of rats manipulating the frequency of a tone exhibit 'frequency fields', akin to place fields seen during spatial navigation.

Brain ageing: A youthful reminder


A study shows that systemic adminstration of plasma from human umbilical cord counteracts ageing-induced impairment of hippocampal function in mice and identifies a key protein in plasma that confers such effects.

Neural development: Keeping a lid on alternative fates


The transcription factor MYT1L contributes to the induction and maintenance of neuronal identity through the repression of multiple alternative lineages.

Working memory: Keeping short-term memories alive


Different interneuron populations modulate delay activity representing action plans in the dorsomedial prefrontal cortex.

Learning and memory: A state to remember


Memory formation requires representations of new information to be efficiently encoded by the brain memory network. Here, the authors used multivariate classification to determine encoding states that were predictive of later recall and those that were likely to lead to forgetting. In people with epilepsy

Neuronal development: The source of the signal


During embryonic development, spinal commissural axons extend towards the floor plate (FP), guided by the axon guidance molecule netrin 1, but the source of netrin 1 is a matter of debate. In the developing spinal cord, netrin 1 is expressed by FP cells and progenitor

Brain evolution: Genetic layering


The neocortex is the most recently evolved part of the brain, and, in this study, RNA sequencing was performed on individual layers of the prefrontal cortex from humans, macaques and chimpanzees and revealed that, although the expression of most genes was conserved across all three

Sleep: Dream a little dream


Dreaming was thought to be confined to rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, which occurs during periods of high-frequency electroencephalographic (EEG) activity, but, more recently, dreaming has been observed during periods of non-REM sleep, which is characterized by low-frequency EEG activity. Monitoring brain activity using high-density

Progranulin, lysosomal regulation and neurodegenerative disease


The discovery that heterozygous and homozygous mutations in the gene encoding progranulin are causally linked to frontotemporal dementia and lysosomal storage disease, respectively, reveals previously unrecognized roles of the progranulin protein in regulating lysosome biogenesis and function. Given the importance of lysosomes in cellular homeostasis,

Adult hippocampal neurogenesis and cognitive flexibility — linking memory and mood


Adult hippocampal neurogenesis has been implicated in cognitive processes, such as pattern separation, and in the behavioural effects of stress and antidepressants. Young adult-born neurons have been shown to inhibit the overall activity of the dentate gyrus by recruiting local interneurons, which may result in

The emerging field of epigenetics in neurodegeneration and neuroprotection


Epigenetic mechanisms — including DNA methylation, histone post-translational modifications and changes in nucleosome positioning — regulate gene expression, cellular differentiation and development in almost all tissues, including the brain. In adulthood, changes in the epigenome are crucial for higher cognitive functions such as learning and

The brain, sirtuins, and ageing


In mammals, recent studies have demonstrated that the brain, the hypothalamus in particular, is a key bidirectional integrator of humoral and neural information from peripheral tissues, thus influencing ageing both in the brain and at the 'systemic' level. CNS decline drives the progressive impairment of

How and why do T cells and their derived cytokines affect the injured and healthy brain?


The evolution of adaptive immunity provides enhanced defence against specific pathogens, as well as homeostatic immune surveillance of all tissues. Despite being 'immune privileged', the CNS uses the assistance of the immune system in physiological and pathological states. In this Opinion article, we discuss the