This Week on NeuroScientistNews: 21-25 September
News Sep 25, 2015
Microbes and mental health; combatting brain cancer spread; delayed remembering, and more.
Everyone has had a “gut feeling”—some liken it to “butterflies” in the stomach before a stressful event, while others deem it a type of intuition—and scientists are bringing this age-old phenomenon into the present-day lab in order to better understand how mental health disorders arise and how they might be treated better.
Scientists at the University of Toledo Health Science Campus and Van Andel Research Institute have discovered an innovative way that may stop the spread of the most lethal and aggressive brain cancer glioblastoma multiforme. In laboratory studies, scientists demonstrated that activating a specific family of proteins halted cancer cell migration into healthy tissue.
For adults, memories tend to fade with time. But a new study has shown that there are circumstances under which the opposite is true for small children: they can remember a piece of information better days later than they can on the day they first learned it.
Using eye-tracking glasses, Queen’s University professor Adam Szulewski has developed a new method to determine how novice medical students learn compared to more experienced medical professionals.
A new study links anxiety, the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC), and optimism, finding that healthy adults who have larger OFCs tend to be more optimistic and less anxious. The new analysis, reported in the journal Social, Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, offers the first evidence that optimism plays a mediating role in the relationship between the size of the OFC and anxiety.
Neurons in the human brain receive electrical signals from thousands of other cells, and long neural extensions called dendrites play a critical role in incorporating all of that information. Using hard-to-obtain samples of human brain tissue, MIT neuroscientists have now discovered that human dendrites have different electrical properties from those of other species.