Boosting depression-causing mechanisms in brain increases resilience, surprisingly | neuroscientistnews.com A new study points to a conceptually novel therapeutic strategy for treating depression. Instead of dampening neuron firing found with stress-induced depression, researchers demonstrated for the first time that further activating these neurons opens a new avenue to mimic and promote natural resilience. The findings were so surprising that the research team thinks it may lead to novel targets for naturally acting antidepressants. Results from the study are published online April 18 in the journal Science. Researchers from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai point out that in mice resilient to social defeat stress (a source of constant stress brought about by losing a dispute or from a hostile interaction), their cation channel currents, which pass positive ions in dopamine neurons, are paradoxically elevated to a much greater extent than those of depressed mice and control mice.
Sand Pile Model of the Mind Grows in Popularity - Scientific American From Quanta Magazine (find original story here). In 1999, the Danish physicist Per Bak proclaimed to a group of neuroscientists that it had taken him only 10 minutes to determine where the field had gone wrong. Perhaps the brain was less complicated than they thought, he said. Perhaps, he said, the brain worked on the same fundamental principles as a simple sand pile, in which avalanches of various sizes help keep the entire system stable overall — a process he dubbed “self-organized criticality.”
Human brains 'hard-wired' to link what we see with what we do -- ScienceDaily Your brain's ability to instantly link what you see with what you do is down to a dedicated information 'highway', suggests new UCL-led research. For the first time, researchers from UCL (University College London) and Cambridge University have found evidence of a specialized mechanism for spatial self-awareness that combines visual cues with body motion. Standard visual processing is prone to distractions, as it requires us to pay attention to objects of interest and filter out others. The new study has shown that our brains have separate 'hard-wired' systems to visually track our own bodies, even if we are not paying attention to them. In fact, the newly-discovered network triggers reactions even before the conscious brain has time to process them.
A man blind since birth is taking up a surprising new hobby: photography. His newfound passion is thanks to a system that turns images into sequences of sound. The technology not only gives “sight” to the blind, but also challenges the way neurologists think the brain is organized. In 1992, Dutch engineer Peter Meijer created vOICe, an algorithm that converts simple grayscale images into musical soundscapes. (The capitalized middle letters sound out “Oh, I see!”). The system scans images from left to right, converting shapes in the image into sound as it sweeps, with higher positions in the image corresponding to higher sound frequencies. Computer Program Allows the Blind to 'See' With Sound
A paper-based device that mimics the electrochemical signalling in the human brain has been created by a group of researchers from China. The thin-film transistor (TFT) has been designed to replicate the junction between two neurons, known as a biological synapse, and could become a key component in the development of artificial neural networks, which could be utilised in a range of fields from robotics to computer processing. The TFT, which has been presented today in the journal Nanotechnology, is the latest device to be fabricated on paper, making the electronics more flexible, cheaper to produce and environmentally friendly. The artificial synaptic TFT consisted of indium zinc oxide (IZO), as both a channel and a gate electrode, separated by a 550-nanometre-thick film of nanogranular silicon dioxide electrolyte, which was fabricated using a process known as chemical vapour deposition. Brain process takes paper shape
Stanford researchers may have solved a riddle about the inner workings of the brain, which consists of billions of neurons, organized into many different regions, with each region primarily responsible for different tasks. The various regions of the brain often work independently, relying on the neurons inside that region to do their work. At other times, however, two regions must cooperate to accomplish the task at hand. The riddle is this: what mechanism allows two brain regions to communicate when they need to cooperate yet avoid interfering with one another when they must work alone? Researchers discover how brain regions work together, or alone -- ScienceDaily
New Neuroscience Journal to Launch The publisher of The Journal of Neuroscience has laid out plans for an open-access, online-only journal for brain research. WIKIMEDIA, NICOLAS ROUGIERThe Society for Neuroscience (SfN), which publishes The Journal of Neuroscience, has given its flagship journal a competitor. The publisher announced that a new open-access, online-only journal for reporting brain research could launch as early as this fall.
A New Method to Measure Consciousness Proposed Leonardo Da Vinci, in his Treatise on Painting (Trattato della Pittura), advises painters to pay particular attention to the motions of the mind, moti mentali. “The movement which is depicted must be appropriate to the mental state of the figure,” he advises; otherwise the figure will be considered twice dead: “dead because it is a depiction, and dead yet again in not exhibiting motion either of the mind or of the body.” Francesco Melzi, student and friend to Da Vinci, compiled the Treatise posthumously from fragmented notes left to him. The vivid portrayal of emotions in the paintings from Leonardo’s school shows that his students learned to read the moti mentali of their subjects in exquisite detail. Associating an emotional expression of the face with a “motion of the mind” was an astonishing insight by Da Vinci and a surprisingly modern metaphor. Today we correlate specific patterns of electrochemical dynamics (i.e.
Brain Neuron Degeneration via Mercury
Part 1 - Phantoms In The Brain (Episode 1)
The brain can be studied by methods ranging from genetics and molecular biology to behavioral testing of human subjects. In addition to an ever increasing store of knowledge about the anatomical organization of the nervous system, many of the most notable successes of modern neuroscience have come from understanding nerve cells as the structural and functional units of the nervous system. Studies of the cellular architecture and molecular components of neurons and glia have revealed much about their individual functions at a detailed level, providing a basis for understanding how nerve cells are organized into neural circuits, and these circuits into neural systems that process specific types of information pertinent to sensory processing and behavioral responses. Neuroscience 5e: Chapter 1 Summary
Grégoire Courtine: The paralyzed rat that walked
Synchronized virtual reality heartbeat triggers out-of-body experiences New research demonstrates that triggering an out-of-body experience (OBE) could be as simple as getting a person to watch a video of themselves with their heartbeat projected onto it. According to the study, it's easy to trick the mind into thinking it belongs to an external body and manipulate a person's self-consciousness by externalizing the body's internal rhythms. The findings could lead to new treatments for people with perceptual disorders such as anorexia and could also help dieters too. In a typical out-of-body experience a person either experiences a feeling of floating outside of their body or of viewing it from outside of themselves.
In spring a band of brainy rodents made headlines for zipping through mazes and mastering memory tricks. Scientists credited the impressive intellectual feats to human cells transplanted into their brains shortly after birth. But the increased mental muster did not come from neurons, the lanky nerve cells that swap electrical signals and stimulate muscles. The mice benefited from human stem cells called glial progenitors, immature cells poised to become astrocytes and other glia cells, the supposed support cells of the brain. Astrocytes are known for mopping up excess neuro-transmitters and maintaining balance in brain systems. Human Cells Make Mice Smarter
Mar. 7, 2013 — Glial cells -- a family of cells found in the human central nervous system and, until recently, considered mere "housekeepers" -- now appear to be essential to the unique complexity of the human brain. Scientists reached this conclusion after demonstrating that when transplanted into mice, these human cells could influence communication within the brain, allowing the animals to learn more rapidly. The study, out today in the journal Cell Stem Cell, suggests that the evolution of a subset of glia called astrocytes -- which are larger and more complex in humans than other species -- may have been one of the key events that led to the higher cognitive functions that distinguish us from other species. Support cells found in human brain make mice smarter
First mind-reading implant gives rats telepathic power - life - 28 February 2013 Read full article Continue reading page |1|2 Video: Watch a pair of rats communicate by mind-reading The world's first brain-to-brain connection has given rats the power to communicate by thought alone. "Many people thought it could never happen," says Miguel Nicolelis at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina.
Split brain with one half atheist and one half theist
The story is one you've heard before: a man slips into a coma and nearly dies. While his body fails, he somehow experiences lights, colors, and landscapes, all while disconnected from his body. Messages are imparted, deep feelings are felt, and then the man is sucked back into the material world. His whole perspective has changed, and he's ready to talk about it. The difference this time, in Proof of Heaven, is that the author and experiencer, Eben Alexander, is a neurosurgeon. Alexander's near-death experience (NDE) was triggered by a rare form of E. When Proof Is Not Enough: Eben Alexander's Proof of Heaven and the Problem of Objectivity in Science
After conducting the largest online intelligence study on record, a Western University-led research team has concluded that the notion of measuring one's intelligence quotient or IQ by a singular, standardized test is highly misleading. The findings from the landmark study, which included more than 100,000 participants, were published Dec. 19 in the journal Neuron. The article, "Fractionating human intelligence," was written by Adrian M. Owen and Adam Hampshire from Western's Brain and Mind Institute (London, Canada) and Roger Highfield, Director of External Affairs, Science Museum Group (London, U.K). Utilizing an online study open to anyone, anywhere in the world, the researchers asked respondents to complete 12 cognitive tests tapping memory, reasoning, attention and planning abilities, as well as a survey about their background and lifestyle habits. Scientists debunk the IQ myth: Notion of measuring one's intelligence quotient by singular, standardized test is highly misleading
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