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Behavioral Neuroscience – News and Features

A collection of white pills laid on a blue background.

New Study Brings Us a Step Closer to Creating Better Pain Medications

Scientists have created detailed structures of the human opioid receptors to guide the development of more targeted pain medications.
Greyscale image of a man sitting on a sofa with his face turned away.

Taking a Placebo Pill Can Make You Feel Less Guilty

In a study, taking a placebo significantly reduced feelings of guilt, even when participants were told they were being given a placebo.
A representation of the synaptic connections in the brain.

Researchers Directly Record Fear-Forming Synapses in the Mouse Brain

For the first time, the creation and elimination of synapses in response to a fearful experience has been recorded in mice.
An image of a DNA helix.

Trouble in the Epigenetics Toolbox?

For over a decade scientists have studied these epigenetic modifications to test associations with disease. Now, a team of researchers reveals that the tool that has been the workhorse for these studies may not actually be appropriate for population epigenetics.
A woman holds the back of her neck.

Key Mechanism Involved in Nerve Pain Identified

After a decade of research, a group of scientists has succeeded in describing a mechanism associated with the production of neuropathic pain, opening an window for the development of targeted therapies.
A brain.

Why a Rare Type of Epilepsy Can Affect Consciousness

Children with absence epilepsy experience brief staring spells, during which they temporarily lose consciousness. Using a genetic model known as Genetic Absence Epilepsy Rats of Strasbourg (GAERS), researchers have identified the neuronal basis for this condition.
A woman smelling some lavender

Smell Loss May Predict Frailty and "Unhealthy Aging"

In a study using data from nearly 1,200 older adults, Johns Hopkins Medicine researchers have added to a growing body of evidence that loss of the sense of smell is a predictive marker for an increased risk of frailty as people age.
A girl wearing a yellow t-shirt and round glasses sits at a table and reads a book.

How We Learn From Being Wrong Can Lead to Anxiety

According to research, students’ positive and negative emotions were not just driven by the exam grades they received, but by what they expected to receive.

A person undergoes a scan.

Why Neuroimaging Can't Diagnose Psychiatric Disorders Yet

Neuroimaging technology has been shown to hold great promise in helping clinicians link specific symptoms of mental health disorders to abnormal patterns of brain activity. But a new Yale-led study shows there are still kinks to be ironed out before doctors can translate images of the brain to psychiatric disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Three apes sitting together.

Apes, Unlike Humans, Find Strangers' Emotions More Interesting

Although humans and apes share many similarities in our social behavior, new research has shown that apes, unlike humans, are more interested in the emotions of strangers than familiar faces.