Weekly Neuroscience Update

Viewing interactive art online can improve our mood and reduce anxiety. People reported significant improvements in mood and anxiety after just a few minutes of viewing an interactive Monet Water Lily art exhibition.

The way our senses adjust while playing virtual reality (VR) games affects the severity of cybersickness experienced. Researchers measured how participants perceived the orientation of vertical lines before and after playing two VR games, one high-intensity, and one low-intensity. They found that those who experienced less sickness were more likely to have the largest change in the subjective visual vertical following exposure to VR. The findings could be useful for VR designers and developers in creating more comfortable and enjoyable experiences.

In a new study, scientists have discovered anatomical changes that occur in the brains of patients after their sight is restored.

Scientists have explored the links between three measures known to independently predict healthy aging: nutrient intake, brain structure and cognitive function. Their analysis adds to the evidence that these factors jointly contribute to brain health in older adults. 

Young men with cannabis use disorder are more likely to develop schizophrenia, according to a new study.

A new study challenges conventional thinking on the role of short and long-term memories in relearning motor skills. Researchers found that fleeting short-term memories, rather than long-term ones, are responsible for rapid motor learning, indicating the existence of mechanisms for regulating the learning rates for memories that are distinct from the memories themselves.

Researchers have identified spatial and temporal abnormalities in spontaneous fixational saccades as a potential biomarker for cognitive and positive symptoms in schizophrenia.

Poor verbal memory may increase the risk of psychiatric hospitalization for patients diagnosed with bipolar disorder or depression. The severity of the illness was previously thought to have an impact on poor memory, but new research shows that poor memory may also have an impact on the risk of being hospitalized.

Researchers have uncovered crucial findings regarding Long COVID, discovering significant immune system and nervous system changes that could explain the neurological symptoms experienced by patients.

A new study from Aarhus University indicates that certain types of epilepsy medication taken during pregnancy may increase the risk of severe psychiatric disorders in children.The research found a worrying link between the antiseizure medication valproate and the child’s risk of developing psychiatric disorders such as autism, ADHD and intellectual disability.

Finally this week, scientists have recently identified a unique form of cell messaging occurring in the human brain that’s not been seen before. Excitingly, the discovery hints that our brains might be even more powerful units of computation than we realized.

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