How Our Body "Hears" VibrationsNews
Researchers have observed what happens in the brains of mice whose forepaws perceive vibrations. They discovered that neurons in the somatosensory cortex are activated in a manner similar to those in the sound-reactive auditory cortex. These results suggest that feeling a phone vibrate or hearing it ring is ultimately based on the same brain codes.READ MORE
Hunting the Brain Circuits Behind Alcohol CravingsNews
Scientists at Scripps Research have found that they can reverse the desire to drink in alcohol-dependent rats—with the flip of a switch. The researchers were able to use lasers to temporarily inactivate a specific neuronal population, reversing alcohol-seeking behavior and even reducing the physical symptoms of withdrawal.
BRAIN Scientists Make Strides in Mapping the Mouse CortexNews
Researchers have outlined a way to classify neurons based not only on how they look, but on with which other neurons they are capable of communicating.READ MORE
Assessing the patterns of energy use and neuronal activity simultaneously in the human brain improves our understanding of how alcohol affects the brain, according to new research. A novel approach for characterizing brain energetic patterns could also be useful for studying other neuropsychiatric diseases.
How is our speech shaped by what we hear? The answer varies, depending on the make-up of our brain’s pathways, a team of neuroscientists has found. The research, which maps how we synchronize our words with the rhythm of the sounds we hear, offers potential methods for diagnosing speech-related afflictions and evaluating cognitive-linguistic development in children.
When it comes to wooing the ‘ladies’, it turns out male bottlenose dolphins seem to employ similar tactics to some human groups. Researchers studying dolphins in southern Australia found they form strong bonds with other male relatives in their social circle to improve their success rate when breeding with a small number of available females.READ MORE
The ability to comprehensively map the architecture of connections between neurons in primate brains has long proven elusive for scientists. But a new study has resulted in a 3D reconstruction of a marmoset brain, as well as information about neuronal connectivity across the entire brain, that offers an unprecedented level of detail.
A study using computational modeling and single-cell transcriptomics identified quiescence as a key feature of old neural stem cells, and identified approaches that could be used to activate the cells to repair the aging brain.READ MORE
The inner ear cells are arranged to transmit sound to the brain, but just slight defects in these patterns can lead to deafness. Over 100 mutations in proteins involved in this intricate system have been associated with hearing loss. New research reveals how one of these proteins acts as a molecular spring that helps convert sound waves into an electrical signal that the brain can recognize.READ MORE
Why do we become more positive as we grow older? Why are adolescents so sensitive to negative social cues? These questions are addressed in a new paper that presents findings from a groundbreaking study examining how people of all ages detect subtle changes in social cues.
Princeton University researchers are gaining new insights into the causes and characteristics of diseases by harnessing machine learning to analyze molecular patterns across hundreds of diseases simultaneously.READ MORE
Think sleeping in on the weekend can repair the damage from a week of sleepless nights? Not so, according to new research. In fact, on some metabolic health measures, trying to play catch-up for a few days and then returning to poor sleep habits may make things worse.READ MORE
Tracking the firings of individual neurons has, until recently, been an arduous process that forces neuroscientists to tediously track each neuron by hand. A breakthrough software tool called CaImAn automates tracking using a combination of standard computational methods and machine-learning techniques.READ MORE