A bird listening to birdsong may experience some of the same emotions as a human listening to music, suggests a new study on white-throated sparrows, published in Frontiers of Evolutionary Neuroscience.
Scientists at University College Cork (UCC) have come up with an innovative strategy to deliver a therapy into the brain to treat the neurogenerative disease, Huntington’s disease (HD). The strategy, which involves using modified sugars to carry gene therapies into the brain, is being hailed as an exciting development which could be applied to many brain disorders, especially those with a genetic basis.
Researchers have used brain imaging technology to show that young people with a known genetic risk of bipolar but no clinical signs of the condition have clear and quantifiable differences in brain activity when compared to controls.
Scientists have identified a previously unknown group of nerve cells in the brain. The nerve cells regulate cardiovascular functions such as heart rhythm and blood pressure. It is hoped that the discovery, which is published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation, will be significant in the long term in the treatment of cardiovascular diseases in humans.
Scientists say they have found a way to distinguish between different types of dementia without the need for invasive tests, like a lumbar puncture.
Scientists at the University of Western Ontario have discovered that perhaps IQ is not the best measure of cognitive performance. Instead, they found that verbal language, short-term memory, and logical reasoning were the most important predictors of cognitive performance.
photo credit: tcd123usa via photopin cc
In this brain video Dr. Greg Berns talks about a new study using brain imaging to study teen brain development. It turns out that adolescents who engage in dangerous activities have frontal white matter tracts that are more adult in form than their more conservative peers.
Risky Behavior in Adolescents May Signal Mature Brain
PLoS Journal Article: “Adolescent Engagement in Dangerous Behaviors Is Associated with Increased White Matter Maturing of Frontal Cortex”
Can meditation change brain signature?
This week..how the brain corrects perceptual errors, how meditation and hypnosis change the brain’s signature, a new method for delivering complex drugs directly to the brain, the brain development of children, and how regular exercise helps overweight children do better at school.
New research provides the first evidence that sensory recalibration - the brain’s automatic correcting of errors in our sensory or perceptual systems – can occur instantly.
In Meditation, Hypnosis Change the Brain signature the Vancouver Sun reports that mindfulness training is ‘a valuable, drug-free tool in the struggle to foster attention skills, with positive spinoffs for controlling our emotions.’
Oxford University scientists have developed a new method for delivering complex drugs directly to the brain, a necessary step for treating diseases like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Motor Neuron Disease and Muscular Dystrophy.
A new study has found that a mother’s iron deficiency early in pregnancy may have a profound and long-lasting effect on the brain development of the child, even if the lack of iron is not enough to cause severe anemia.
Children with Tourette syndrome could benefit from behavioural therapy to reduce their symptoms, according to a new brain imaging study.
Regular exercise improves the ability of overweight, previously inactive children to think, plan and even do mathematics, Georgia Health Sciences University researchers report.
Image Credit: Photostock
People’s brains are more responsive to friends than to strangers, even if the stranger has more in common, according to a study in the Oct. 13 issue of The Journal of Neuroscience.
In Time magazine’s What Your Brain Looks Like After 20 Years of Marriage, Belinda Luscomb has been taking a look at the neuroscience of love.
And speaking of love, new research has also found that falling in love only takes about a fifth of a second!
And what exactly is going on in your brain if you are looking back with nostalgia at past loves? I came across a fascinating article on the neuroscience of nostalgia and memories.
Now a question for you? How many of you feel you have lost the art of writing by hand, now that we are all so computer literate these days? Associate professor Anne Mangen at the University of Stavanger’s Reading Centre asks if something is lost in switching from book to computer screen, and from pen to keyboard and discovers that writing by hand does indeed strengthen the learning process.
Among the hot topics of debate at last month’s SFN meeting was that of the developing brain and how early childhood experiences, whether good or bad, influence the brain for a lifetime.
Regina Sullivan of New York University postulates that child abuse-related epigenetic changes, which alter the brain, are passed on to the next generation, perhaps explaining the cycle of abuse observed in many families. (The development and maintenance of an organism is orchestrated by a set of chemical reactions that switch parts of the genome off and on at strategic times and locations. Epigenetics is the study of these reactions and the factors that influence them.)
The primary evidence for stress-related changes comes from human brain imaging, which has uncovered brain differences between children with a typical childhood and those who suffer abuse.
However, work being done by Bruce McEwen, professor of neuroscience at Rockefeller University in New York, shows that the effects of childhood experiences such as neglect or abuse, can be reversed through interventions such as high-quality early care and education programmes.
Source: New Scientist
Here’s a short video describing how recent advances in brain imaging with fMRI which allows you watch activity in discrete parts of the brain – for instance when in pain can allow you control it. If true, the implications of this finding are staggering …and liberating for those with seemingly intractable emotional issues.