Neuroscience

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  • Why Can’t We Stop Eating?

    Brain Blogger
    Nisha Cooch, PhD
    22 Apr 2014 | 4:30 am
    We have long known the simplest recipe for weight loss: eat less and exercise more. Yet despite our understanding of the causes of weight fluctuation and the serious health risks associated with obesity, our collective weight continues to rise.Researchers have suggested several potential culprits for the ‘obesity epidemic,’ including genetic predisposition, lack of education, and cultural incentives for unhealthy behaviors (such as time and cost savings). However, none of these factors provides a thorough explanation of the problem. Indeed, most of us, regardless of our specific genes,…
  • First brain images of African infants enable research into cognitive effects of nutrition

    Neuroscience News -- ScienceDaily
    22 Apr 2014 | 5:49 am
    Brain activity of babies in developing countries could be monitored from birth to reveal the first signs of cognitive dysfunction, researchers say. The cognitive function of infants can be visualized and tracked more quickly, more accurately and more cheaply using the method, called functional near infra-red spectroscopy (fNIRS), compared to the behavioral assessments Western regions have relied upon for decades.
  • Brain Size Matters When it Comes to Animal Self Control

    Neuroscience RSS Feeds - Neuroscience News Updates
    Neuroscience News
    22 Apr 2014 | 2:28 pm
    Animals with the largest brain volume showed superior cognitive abilities, a new study reports.
  • Training emotions - a brief video from The Brain Club

    Deric Bownds' MindBlog
    17 Apr 2014 | 9:14 am
    I received an email recently from "The Brain Club" pointing me to the series of brief video presentations they are developing over time. I thought the presentation by Amit Etkin at Stanford Univ. was very effective. I'm including that video in this post. It describes the results of a meta-analysis of many papers that shows that in anxious and depressed individuals the brain's amygdala, insula, and cingulate are over-reactive while the prefrontal cortex is under-reactive. (i.e. the downstairs is over-riding the upstairs of our brains.) Cognitive training exercises available on the web that…
  • Physicists push new Parkinson's treatment toward clinical trials

    Neuroscience News -- ScienceDaily
    21 Apr 2014 | 10:59 am
    The most effective way to tackle debilitating diseases is to punch them at the start and keep them from growing. Research shows that a small 'molecular tweezer' keeps proteins from clumping, or aggregating, the first step of neurological disorders such as Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease and Huntington's disease.
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    Brains On Purpose™

  • Video: Amishi Jha on the neuroscience of mindfulness

    StephanieWestAllen
    8 Apr 2014 | 5:40 am
    In February, a large group of us were fortunate to hear neuroscientist Amishi Jha speak on the brain science of mindfulness. All of you, no matter where you are, can watch part of her program now. Click to see her Friday evening lecture. The YouTube description: Respected brain researcher Amishi Jha brings a fascinating exploration of findings from cutting-edge neuroscience...
  • Good to hear: Two interviews with me have made top-10 or most-listened-to lists

    StephanieWestAllen
    27 Mar 2014 | 3:23 pm
    I am pleased to say that the interview by Zena Zumeta of me for the Texas Conflict Coach Radio Blog Show was one of The Best of 2013. The description: Brains on Purpose: Traits and States to Shape Your Conflict Fate Our brains are changing all the time. We can be in control of those changes or we can have...
  • An authentically calming voice: Another benefit of mindfulness for lawyers, mediators, counselors

    StephanieWestAllen
    23 Mar 2014 | 8:15 am
    Your tone of voice can affect your client's ability to hear you, especially in times of stress. In order to have a tone of voice that allows us to be heard, we need to monitor our own level of tension, our own level of defensiveness, our own level of feeling safe. Ongoing monitoring requires mindfulness. And a truly calming tone...
  • Video: The Lawyer's Brain on Meditation

    StephanieWestAllen
    19 Mar 2014 | 3:37 pm
    The latest video to be posted on the YouTube channel for the Berkeley Initiative for Mindfulness in the Law is The Lawyer's Brain on Meditation: Insights from Neuroscience. The description: Neuroscientist Emiliana Simon-Thomas, Ph D, Science Director of the Greater Good Science Center, presents at Berkeley Law on the ways meditation can improve the well-being, concentration, and emotional intelligence of...
  • How to focus that wandering mind

    StephanieWestAllen
    3 Mar 2014 | 1:07 pm
    Below is an article with a good overview of a skill and habit that is helpful, probably essential, to both parties in dispute and conflict professionals: focusing a mind that's wandering. The article also explains some of the neuroscience underlying focus and wandering. From "How to Focus a Wandering Mind" (DailyGood.org): Reading all this might make you think that we’d...
 
 
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    Neuroscience News -- ScienceDaily

  • Brain size matters when it comes to animal self-control

    22 Apr 2014 | 8:34 am
    Chimpanzees may throw tantrums like toddlers, but their total brain size suggests they have more self-control than, say, a gerbil or fox squirrel, according to a new study of 36 species of mammals and birds ranging from orangutans to zebra finches.
  • Life stressors trigger neurological disorders, researchers find

    22 Apr 2014 | 8:34 am
    When mothers are exposed to trauma, illness, alcohol or other drug abuse, these stressors may activate a single molecular trigger in brain cells that can go awry and activate conditions such as schizophrenia, post-traumatic stress disorder and some forms of autism. Until now, it has been unclear how much these stressors have impacted the cells of a developing brain. Past studies have shown that when an expectant mother exposes herself to alcohol or drug abuse or she experiences some trauma or illness, her baby may later develop a psychiatric disorder later in life. But the new findings…
  • New way to enhance nerve growth following injury discovered

    22 Apr 2014 | 5:49 am
    A mechanism to promote growth in damaged nerve cells as a means to restore connections after injury has been uncovered by scientists who have discovered a key molecule that directly regulates nerve cell growth in the damaged nervous system. "We made the surprising discovery that a protein called Retinoblastoma (Rb) is present in adult neurons," explains the lead researcher. "This protein appears to normally act as a brake -- preventing nerve growth."
  • First brain images of African infants enable research into cognitive effects of nutrition

    22 Apr 2014 | 5:49 am
    Brain activity of babies in developing countries could be monitored from birth to reveal the first signs of cognitive dysfunction, researchers say. The cognitive function of infants can be visualized and tracked more quickly, more accurately and more cheaply using the method, called functional near infra-red spectroscopy (fNIRS), compared to the behavioral assessments Western regions have relied upon for decades.
  • Physicists push new Parkinson's treatment toward clinical trials

    21 Apr 2014 | 10:59 am
    The most effective way to tackle debilitating diseases is to punch them at the start and keep them from growing. Research shows that a small 'molecular tweezer' keeps proteins from clumping, or aggregating, the first step of neurological disorders such as Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease and Huntington's disease.
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    ScienceBlogs

  • The Eeyores of Academia [Dynamics of Cats]

    Steinn Sigurðsson
    22 Apr 2014 | 9:06 pm
    “The wonderful thing about Tiggers Is Tiggers are wonderful things…” Tigger was my favourite on the Hundred Acre Campus. “…bouncy, trouncy, flouncy, pouncy Fun, fun, fun, fun, FUN!” Recently I was at a meeting, and a comment was made about how someone was being negative. Not only was this a bit of a bummer, total downer, harshing everyone’s mellow. It actually violated our Code of Mututal Respect and Cooperation! Namely Article 9: “Have a positive attitude” Huh? Well. Yes, I knew we had a Code. But I had not internalised this particular…
  • Guardian Emmy [Uncertain Principles]

    Chad Orzel
    22 Apr 2014 | 5:55 pm
    “DAAAAADDDDDYYYYY!!!!” “What’s the matter, honey?” “I don’t like being alone.” “Well, I’m sorry, honey, but I have work to do, and it’s time for you to go to sleep.” “But when I’m alone I get scared.” “Well, I can put on some music if you like. You can listen to that, and it might give you something else to think about.” “Yeah, put the music on.” “I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but when I sleep, I always put music on, because it helps me feel less lonely.”…
  • Happy Earth Day from the Universe (Synopsis) [Starts With A Bang]

    Ethan
    22 Apr 2014 | 4:25 pm
    “It took less than an hour to make the atoms, a few hundred million years to make the stars and planets, but five billion years to make man!” -George Gamow Whenever Earth Day comes around, I see a lot of different reactions from people. Some express their passion for the environment, others express disdain for the whole concept as a distraction. Some step up to act as responsible stewards of the world, while others fear nuclear accidents, asteroid strikes or climate change. Image credit: NASA / Voyager 1. This (cropped) 1977 image is the first photo of the complete Earth and Moon in a…
  • Meet Dr. John Sotos from the Festival’s “Getting the Science Right in Hollywood” Panel [USA Science and Engineering Festival: The Blog]

    carlyo
    22 Apr 2014 | 3:14 pm
    Guest blog by Dr. John Sotos Getting the Science Right in Hollywood Panel Member and Book Fair Author at the USA Science & Engineering Festival  I love medicine.  But maybe not for the reasons you think. Most people go into the field desiring to help others.  Not me, at least not at first. Many people go into medicine to make scientific discoveries.  Not me. And, alas, some people go into medicine to gratify their ego, pad their wallet, or satisfy parental expectations.  Not me, thank goodness.  I went into medicine because, well . . . I don’t really know why.  And…
  • Calculating The Carbon Cost Of … well, anything. [Greg Laden's Blog]

    Greg Laden
    22 Apr 2014 | 9:42 am
    There is currently a twitter argument happening, along with a bit of a blogging swarm, over a chimera of a remark made by John Stossle and Bjorn Lomborg. They made the claim that a million electric cars would have no benefit with resect to Carbon emissions. The crux of the argument is that there is a Carbon cost to manufacturing and running electric cars. When we manufacture anything, we emit Carbon, and when we make electricity to run the cars, we emit Carbon, etc. etc. Lomborg is wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong. But here I want to focus on one aspect of why he is wrong that applies…
 
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    Deric Bownds' MindBlog

  • Top Brain, Bottom Brain - a user's manual from Kosslyn and Miller

    22 Apr 2014 | 3:55 am
    I thought I would point to a recent book authored by Kosslyn and Miller:  “Top Brain - Bottom Brain: Surprising Insights into How You Think.” They make a good effort to communicate (co-author Miller is a professional journalist/author), yet it is a tough slog at points.Their basic simplification is to describe the top and the bottom parts of the brain as performing different sorts of tasks. The bottom-brain system classifies and interprets sensory information from the world, and the top-brain system formulates and executes plans. Here is the standard brain graphic from their…
  • Judging a man by the width of his face.

    21 Apr 2014 | 3:31 am
    Valentine et al. make interesting observations in a speed-dating context. The effect of higher facial width-to-height ratio on short-term but not long-term relationships is compatible with the idea that more dominant men who are selected for mating because of their good health and prowess may also more likely to be less faithful and less investing as fathers: Previous research has shown that men with higher facial width-to-height ratios (fWHRs) have higher testosterone and are more aggressive, more powerful, and more financially successful. We tested whether they are also more attractive to…
  • Over the hill at 24

    17 Apr 2014 | 9:23 am
    Great....the continuous stream of papers documenting cognitive aging in adults and seniors, many noted in MindBlog, has how lowered the bar even further. Thompson et al. find a slowing of response times in a video game beginning at 24 years of age. Typically studies of the effects of aging on cognitive-motor performance emphasize changes in elderly populations. Although some research is directly concerned with when age-related decline actually begins, studies are often based on relatively simple reaction time tasks, making it impossible to gauge the impact of experience in compensating for…
  • Training emotions - a brief video from The Brain Club

    17 Apr 2014 | 9:14 am
    I received an email recently from "The Brain Club" pointing me to the series of brief video presentations they are developing over time. I thought the presentation by Amit Etkin at Stanford Univ. was very effective. I'm including that video in this post. It describes the results of a meta-analysis of many papers that shows that in anxious and depressed individuals the brain's amygdala, insula, and cingulate are over-reactive while the prefrontal cortex is under-reactive. (i.e. the downstairs is over-riding the upstairs of our brains.) Cognitive training exercises available on the web that…
  • Attributing awareness to oneself and others.

    17 Apr 2014 | 5:22 am
    Kelley et al. make some fascinating observations. I pass on their statement of the significance of the work and their abstract: Significance What is the relationship between your own private awareness of events and the awareness that you intuitively attribute to the people around you? In this study, a region of the human cerebral cortex was active when people attributed sensory awareness to someone else. Furthermore, when that region of cortex was temporarily disrupted, the person’s own sensory awareness was disrupted. The findings suggest a fundamental connection between private awareness…
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    Brain Blogger

  • Why Can’t We Stop Eating?

    Nisha Cooch, PhD
    22 Apr 2014 | 4:30 am
    We have long known the simplest recipe for weight loss: eat less and exercise more. Yet despite our understanding of the causes of weight fluctuation and the serious health risks associated with obesity, our collective weight continues to rise.Researchers have suggested several potential culprits for the ‘obesity epidemic,’ including genetic predisposition, lack of education, and cultural incentives for unhealthy behaviors (such as time and cost savings). However, none of these factors provides a thorough explanation of the problem. Indeed, most of us, regardless of our specific genes,…
  • Deliberately Forgetting Memories – Easy for Some

    Carla Clark, PhD
    20 Apr 2014 | 7:18 am
    We have all had memories that, at some point in time, we wished we could forget. Many newly published studies highlight the neurological and molecular mechanisms behind choosing to forget and suggest why disrupting this process may lead to unhealthy aging and serious mental disorders. It seems, that to some degree, one does find eternal sunshine in a spotless mind.Our autobiographical memories are integral to both making sense of the past and making predictions for the future, as well as providing an understanding of who we are as individuals. Having a lack of control over autobiographical…
  • Executive Pathologies – The Relationship Between CEO Narcissism and Fraud

    Lindsay Myers, MBA, MPH
    16 Apr 2014 | 8:19 am
    Research suggests an association between CEO personality traits and fraudulent behavior. Narcissism has been linked to manipulation of financial results, which has implications for the executive selection process, board oversight, and the structuring of executive compensation packages.The celebration of financial misconduct in movies like The Wolf of Wall Street tends to focus on the enthralling aspects of the perpetrator’s personality, rather than the economic woe that ensues for other, less glamorous stakeholders such as the average investor or the employee who loses his or her job in the…
  • Empathy and Stress – Women Are the Stronger Sex

    Jennifer Gibson, PharmD
    13 Apr 2014 | 4:30 am
    I learned many of life’s great lessons while watching Audrey Hepburn movies with my grandmother. To this day, I cannot hear the word “empathy” without being reminded of the first time I heard that word in the movie Funny Face. Empathy is difficult to study, owing to its many dimensions and facets, but it is essential to human interaction. And new evidence suggests that women may be better at it than men.In the movie, Audrey Hepburn plays Jo, a shy bookkeeper who wants to spend her days studying the theories of empathicalism. When Fred Astaire (as Dick Avery) asks her about her…
  • Does Spirituality and Religion Guard Against Depression?

    Jesse Bisignano, MA
    11 Apr 2014 | 4:30 am
    There has long been anecdotal evidence that sustained spiritual or religious practice can help improve people’s mood and general sense of well-being. For the first time, we may be on the cusp of understanding the neurological mechanisms underlying these long reported effects.A recent study from Columbia University has found that there is a strong correlation between how highly someone values spirituality and religion, and the structure of their brains in regions associated with depression. According to lead researcher Lisa Miller, participants who reported that spirituality and religion…
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    Mind Hacks

  • Why all babies love peekaboo

    tomstafford
    22 Apr 2014 | 1:53 am
    Peekaboo is a game played over the world, crossing language and cultural barriers. Why is it so universal? Perhaps because it’s such a powerful learning tool. One of us hides our eyes and then slowly reveals them. This causes peals of laughter from a baby, which causes us to laugh in turn. Then we do it again. And again. Peekaboo never gets old. Not only does my own infant daughter seem happy to do it for hours, but when I was young I played it with my mum (“you chuckled a lot!” she confirms by text message) and so on back through the generations. We are all born with unique…
  • A history of the mind in 25 parts

    vaughanbell
    21 Apr 2014 | 1:40 pm
    BBC Radio 4 has just kicked off a 25-part radio series called ‘In Search of Ourselves: A History of Psychology and the Mind’. Because the BBC are not very good at the internet, there are no podcasts – streaming audio only, and each episode disappears after seven days. Good to see the BBC are still on the cutting edge of 20th Century media. The series looks fantastic however and it aims to cover psychology, psychiatry, neuroscience and the diverse history of dealing with mental distress. The first episode is already online so worth tuning in while you can.   Link to In…
  • Detecting inner consciousness

    vaughanbell
    21 Apr 2014 | 9:01 am
    Mosaic has an excellent in-depth article on researchers who are trying to detect signs of consciousness in patients who have fallen into coma-like states. The piece meshes the work of neuroscientists Adrian Owen, Nicholas Schiff and Steven Laureys who are independently looking at how to detect signs of consciousness in unresponsive brain-injured patients. It’s an excellent piece and communicates the key difference between various states of poor response after brain injury that are crucial for making sense of the ‘consciousness in coma’ headlines. One of the key concepts is…
  • Spike activity 18-04-2014

    vaughanbell
    19 Apr 2014 | 2:07 am
    Quick links from the past week in mind and brain news: Wired has a fascinating interview with psychopath researcher Kent Kiehl. He of the mobile brain scanner. Scanning brain energy could help predict who will wake from vegetative state. Interesting piece on preliminary research covered by The Conversation Contrary to news stories, a recent study did not tell us that smoking weed damages your brain, reports The Daily Beast. Gay genes? Yeah, but no, well kind of… but, so what? Excellent piece from Wiring the Brain. You guys all read Wiring the Brain right? The Association for Psychological…
  • Indie reports on surprising structure of artists’ brains

    vaughanbell
    18 Apr 2014 | 4:40 am
    Artists brains are ‘structurally different’ according to The Independent, who report on a small, thought-provoking but as yet quite preliminary study. The image used to illustrate the article (the one on the right) is described as showing “more grey and white matter in artists’ brains connected to visual imagination and fine motor control”. This could be a bit alarming, especially if you are an artist, because that’s actually a map of a mouse brain. Whether artists have ‘different brains’ or not, in any meaningful sense, is perhaps slightly…
 
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    Neuroethics & Law Blog

  • "Of Mitochondria and Men: Why Brain Death is Not the Death of the Human 'Organism as a Whole'"

    NELB Staff
    22 Apr 2014 | 12:36 pm
    Recently posted to SSRN: "Of Mitochondria and Men: Why Brain Death is Not the Death of the Human 'Organism as a Whole'" JACQUELYN SHAW, Dalhousie University Abstract: Death is a phenomenon that resists simple explanation. While the cardiopulmonary criterion of...
  • PEBS Neuroethics Roundup (JHU)

    NELB Staff
    17 Apr 2014 | 12:38 pm
    Last Edition's Most Popular Article(s): Why are scientists trying to map every single neuron in the brain?, Vox In The Popular Press: Antidepressant use in pregnancy linked to autism risk in boys: Study, CBS News A Patient's Bizarre Hallucination Points...
  • "Addiction, Compulsion, and Agency"

    NELB Staff
    16 Apr 2014 | 2:34 am
    "Addiction, Compulsion, and Agency" by Ezio Di Nucci has been published in the most recent issue of Neuroethics: Abstract I show that Pickard’s argument against the irresistibility of addiction fails because her proposed dilemma, according to which either drug-seeking does...
  • "Clinicians’ Attitudes toward Patients with Disorders of Consciousness: A Survey"

    NELB Staff
    14 Apr 2014 | 2:30 am
    "Clinicians’ Attitudes toward Patients with Disorders of Consciousness: A Survey" by Michele Farisco, et al., has been published in the most recent issue of Neuroethics: Abstract Notwithstanding fundamental methodological advancements, scientific information about disorders of consciousness (DOCs)—e.g. Vegetative State/Unresponsive Wakefulness...
  • " Painful Disparities, Painful Realities"

    NELB Staff
    11 Apr 2014 | 6:23 am
    Recently posted to SSRN (and published as a Univeristy of Maryland Legal Studies Research Paper): "Painful Disparities, Painful Realities" AMANDA C. PUSTILNIK, University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law Legal doctrines and decisional norms treat chronic claims pain...
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    Neuromarketing

  • The World’s Top Persuaders, Inside Your Head

    Roger Dooley
    22 Apr 2014 | 6:01 am
    How would you like to do a mind-meld with some of the world’s top experts in psychology, persuasion, marketing, neuroscience and more? For free? I’ve got exciting news for my Neuromarketing readers! We’re still working on the mind-meld technology, but the next-best thing is available today: The Brainfluence Podcast. Every week, we’ll talk with experts [...]
  • Webs of Influence by Nathalie Nahai

    Roger Dooley
    21 Apr 2014 | 7:20 am
    Book Review: Webs of Influence: The Psychology of Online Persuasion by Nathalie Nahai I read a lot of marketing books, but it’s rare to find one that so closely matches my own interests. Nathalie Nahai’s Webs of Influence focuses on the intersection of web design and persuasion psychology. It’s safe to say that if you [...]
  • The Most Persuasive Website in the World and More – Roger’s Picks

    Roger Dooley
    18 Apr 2014 | 8:27 am
    It’s that time again, and we’ve got a diverse set of reading from around the web. Please share your own great find in a comment! Need more exposure? Austen Allred (@AustenAllred) tells you how in The Hacker’s Guide to Getting Press . This is a long, detailed post that could easily be turned into an ebook [...]
  • Why You Are a Complete Idiot If You Don’t Google Yourself

    Roger Dooley
    16 Apr 2014 | 10:37 am
    The other day, I read a story at Fast Company titled Why You Should Google Yourself And Not Feel Guilty About It. I agreed with the reasoning of the author, Lindsay Lavine (@lindsaylavine), but was slightly puzzled by the “guilty” part. The headline was underscored by the opening sentence, “Admit it. You’ve Googled yourself, and [...]
  • Repped: 30 Days to a Better Online Reputation by Andy Beal

    Roger Dooley
    15 Apr 2014 | 8:36 am
    Book Review: Repped: 30 Days to a Better Online Reputation by Andy Beal In these days of heavy business books laden with theory, we still encounter a few that are short, action-oriented, and eminently practical. Andy Beal’s Repped is one such book. Beal offers readers a 30-day program to evaluate a company or individual’s online [...]
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    SharpBrains

  • How leading marketing pros train their brains, stay ahead of the curve

    SharpBrains
    22 Apr 2014 | 7:11 am
    The Brainy Insight for B2B (Renegade Media): “We all know Chief Marketing Officers (CMOs) are extraordinarily busy people. They’re juggling strategic, tactical, managerial, vendor and customer challenges, all while trying to stay ahead of the curve. This is where Renegade saw the opportunity for a brainy introduction to MediaMath. We partnered with leading brain trainer Alvaro Fernandez of SharpBrains, to learn the best ways to keep your thinker ticking. At The CMO Club House during SxSW 2014, we introduced the concept of #TrainYourBrain, a triple threat brain treatment that would help…
  • The neuroscience of positive, vision-based coaching

    Greater Good Magazine
    21 Apr 2014 | 8:35 am
    Good coaches get results, respect, and awards. But what makes a coach or mentor good? One school of thought says they should hold their mentees to specific performance benchmarks and help them reach those benchmarks by targeting their personal weaknesses. But new research suggests a different tack—namely, to nurture a mentee’s strengths, aspirations for the future, and goals for personal growth. Indeed, studies suggest that this positive approach is more effective at helping people learn and change; for instance, it helps train business school students to be better managers, and it is…
  • Beyond concussions: football-related hits impact brain’s white matter

    SharpBrains
    18 Apr 2014 | 10:58 am
    Brains of Football Players Don’t Fully Recover During Offseason, Study Finds (Education Week): “Some football players’ brains may not fully recover from hits endured even after six months of no-contact rest during the offseason… imaging scans showed changes in white matter consistent with mild brain injury in about half the players, despite the fact that none of them had suffered a concussion…“At this point we don’t know the implications, but there is a valid concern that six months of no-contact rest may not be enough for some players. And the reality of high school, college…
  • To improve total health and fitness, let’s enhance brain functioning

    SharpBrains
    17 Apr 2014 | 10:58 am
    Surgeon general says brain health ‘new frontier’ (ARNEWS): “Brain health is the “new frontier” in science said Lt. Gen. Patricia D. Horoho as she kicked off a two-day consortium on the topic. Tapping into the full potential of the brain can have immense benefits for Soldiers, their families and the nation, said the Army’s surgeon general in opening remarks…The brain is the only organ in the human body that has self-awareness, she said. It has evolved the ability to predict threats and act proactively. “Ultimately, the decisions made by the brain impact our overall health and…
  • When was the last time you saw your brain? (That may change soon)

    SharpBrains
    15 Apr 2014 | 5:29 pm
    Flying Through Inner Space (National Geographic): “It’s hard to truly see the brain. I don’t mean to simply see a three-pound hunk of tissue. I mean to see it in a way that offers a deep feel for how it works. That’s not surprising, given that the human brain is made up of over 80 billion neurons, each branching out to form thousands of connections to other neurons…a number of neuroscientists are charting the brain now in ways that were impossible just a few years ago. And out of these surveys, an interesting new way to look at the brain is emerging. Call it the brain fly-through.
 
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    BSP Show Notes - Brain Science Podcast

  • Consciousness as Social Perception (BSP 108)

    Ginger Campbell, MD
    15 Apr 2014 | 1:00 am
    Michal Graziano and Kevin (click image to play interview) In his latest book Consciousness and the Social Brain  Princeton neuroscientist Michael Graziano proposes a unique and compelling theory of consciousness. He proposes that the same circuits that the human brain uses to attribute awareness to others are used to model self-awareness. He emphasizes that his attention schema theory is only tentative, but it is testable and it does fit our current knowledge of brain function.In a recent interview for the Brain Science Podcast (BSP 108), Graziano used the…
  • Sleep Science with Penny Lewis (BSP 107)

    Ginger Campbell, MD
    18 Mar 2014 | 4:55 am
    Penny Lewis (click image to play interview) In The Secret World of Sleep: The Surprising Science of the Mind at Rest Dr. Penelope A. Lewis provides a highly readable account of the fascinating world of sleep research. Fascinating research is being carried out with animals as varied as fruit flies and rats, as well as with humans. I was surprised to learn that most people actually find it fairly easy to fall asleep in an fMRI scanner.I have just posted an interview with Dr. Lewis (BSP 107) that includes a discussion of the role of sleep in memory as well as interesting findings about how…
  • "The Cognitive-Emotional Brain" (BSP 106)

    Ginger Campbell, MD
    17 Feb 2014 | 8:13 pm
    Luiz Pessoa of the University of Maryland In The Cognitive-Emotional Brain: From Interactions to Integration neuroscientist Luiz Pessoa argues that emotion and cognition are deeply intertwined throughout many levels of the brain. In a recent interview (BSP 106) Pessoa and I focused on recent discoveries about the amygdala and Thalamus that challenge traditional assumptions about what these structures do. The amygdala processes more than fear (and other negative stimuli) and the Thalamus is more than  a mere relay station.This a fairly technical discussion but Pessoa did a good job…
  • Brain Plasticity with Michael Merzenich (BSP 105)

    Ginger Campbell, MD
    21 Jan 2014 | 1:00 am
                                  Michael Merzenich If you have read anything about brain plasticity you have seen the name Michael Merzenich. Dr. Merzenich is one of the pioneers in this field, having spent over 30 years documenting that the human brain (and that of other mammals) continues to change throughout life. I interviewed Dr. Merzenich several years ago (BSP 54), but the publication of his first book Soft-Wired: How the New Science of Brain Plasticity Can Change Your Life gave us another opportunity to talk about…
  • BSP launches Premium Subscription

    Ginger Campbell, MD
    30 Dec 2013 | 1:35 pm
    Today I am launching the new Premium Subscription program for the Brain Science Podcast. This subscription will provide unlimited access to the entire library of Brain Podcast episodes and transcripts for only $5 per month. Individual episodes and transcripts are also available for sale here.All new episodes of the Brain Science Podcast will continue to be FREE as will the most recent 25 episodes. This represents about two years of free content. I am hopeful that this combination of free and premium content will allow me to continue to produce the Brain Science Podcast for many years to…
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    Neuroscience News

  • Neuroscientists discover brain circuits involved in emotion

    22 Apr 2014 | 4:45 pm
    … Bridget Lumb, Professor of Systems Neuroscience, added: "Our work introduces … Neuroscience which fosters interactions across one of the largest communities of neuroscientists … how Bristol Neuroscience brings together expertise in different fields of neuroscience leading …
  • Interview with expert about Clinical Trial Logistics

    22 Apr 2014 | 3:03 am
    Interview with expert about Clinical Trial Logistics LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM, April 22, 2014 /EINPresswire.com/ -- Key Opinion Leader Vimal Unewal, Planning Manager, Ferring Pharmaceuticals Ltd elaborated on managing supply chain efficiency by …
  • Experts share their insights on Immunogenicity

    22 Apr 2014 | 3:03 am
    In preparation for SMi's inaugural Immunogenicity event (14th July – 15th July, London, UK) we spoke with our key opinion speakers. LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM, April 22, 2014 /EINPresswire.com/ -- SMi are delighted to present their inaugural …
  • Experts share their insights on Immunogenicity

    22 Apr 2014 | 1:00 am
    In preparation for our inaugural Immunogenicity event (14th July – 15th July, London, UK) we spoke with our key opinion speakers LONDON, --PLEASE SELECT--, UNITED KINGDOM, April 22, 2014 /EINPresswire.com/ -- SMi are delighted to present their inaugural …
  • Nervous System Research: New Findings on Neuroscience from Misericordia Hospital Summarized

    22 Apr 2014 | 12:03 am
    … from R. Ravenni, Dept. of Neuroscience, Neurology and Neurophysiology Units, Ospedale … . Copyright 2014, NewsRx LLC More Neuroscience News and Research
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    NeuroLogica Blog

  • Motivated Memory

    Steven Novella
    22 Apr 2014 | 5:17 am
    I have had the following experience many times, and so I suspect that it is a near-universal experience. You are in a heated conversation with one or more other people who have differing opinions on the topic of discussion. Perhaps it’s just a fight over personal matters. After the heat has died down and calmer emotions prevail, you try to come to some sort of resolution about the prior conversation. Such efforts, however, are complicated by the fact that everyone has a very different memory of the conversation you just shared. A related experience that is also common occurs when…
  • Not Looking Good for Biofuels

    Steven Novella
    21 Apr 2014 | 5:37 am
    I have yet to be convinced that biofuels will be a significant benefit in our attempts to achieve sustainable energy production. Ideally we would run our civilization on energy that does not burn a limited resource or contribute CO2 or other compounds into the atmosphere. Any limited resource will eventually run out, by definition. Further, no matter what you think about the current effects of climate change, it’s hard to deny that if we continue to pump CO2 into the atmosphere this is likely to be a problem. Biofuels sound like a good idea at first. Plants get their energy from the sun…
  • OMG – The Chemicalz

    Steven Novella
    18 Apr 2014 | 1:49 am
    The Foodbabe is at it again – well, she never stopped being at it. She is apparently trying to make a career out of a combination of the naturalistic fallacy and chemical illiteracy. I wrote previously about her campaign to scaremonger about completely safe ingredients in food. She called azodicarbonamide, an ingredient to make bread fluffier, the yoga mat chemical because it also has a variety of industrial uses, including making yoga mats. Soy also has a variety of uses, including making yoga mats. She successfully marshaled her scientific illiteracy to pressure Subway into removing…
  • Predicting Recovery from Coma

    Steven Novella
    17 Apr 2014 | 7:11 am
    I have been following the literature on using newer technologies (PET, fMRI, and quantitative EEG) to evaluate the brain activity of patients who appear unresponsive, loosely referred to as coma, or more generally disorders of consciousness. A new study, which I will get to below, adds an interesting element to the research. For background, disorders of consciousness result from brain injury or disease that affects either the brainstem (needed for arousal) and/or both brain hemispheres. Level of consciousness is a continuum from drowsy to brain dead, but for the purposes of this discussion I…
  • Why We Need a Skeptical Movement

    Steven Novella
    15 Apr 2014 | 5:24 am
    Skeptics tend (as they should) to question everything, even the need for a movement of self-identified skeptics. It is an interesting question – what is the net cultural effect of organized scientific skepticism? Of course, we can’t really ever know the answer to this question. There are too many moving parts. We could point to cultural trends, but this is probably the worst line of evidence. There is no way to control for skepticism as an isolated variable. We have no way of knowing what the world would be like without organized skepticism. We can point to individuals whose lives…
 
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    neuroscience « WordPress.com Tag Feed

  • How Neuroscience is Helping Us Understand Eating Disorders and Recovery

    recoverymama
    17 Apr 2014 | 4:43 pm
    Have you ever eaten “comfort foods” to calm yourself down? What about having a little ice-cream when feeling sad or depressed? Or does the thought of eating chocolate cake after a meal totally stress you out with anxious thoughts about your body? According to the latest research into neuroscience, there is a reason for it… To read the full article, click here: http://www.psychedinsanfrancisco.com/how-neuroscience-is-helping-us-understand-eating-disorders-and-recovery/
  • Blog Recommendations: Framework 21 and Brainwaves For Leaders

    liane {meraki geek}
    17 Apr 2014 | 3:01 pm
    I recently started following Daniel Montano’s blog Framework 21 and have loved what I’ve
  • Post Of The Week - Thursday 17th April

    tombssimon
    17 Apr 2014 | 1:02 pm
    1) Oxytocin – Myth And Truth Oxytocin is a hormone which has had a mention or two on this blog, most recently last week in relation to research suggesting that it could be used to treat autism. This article explains three of the myths surrounding oxytocin and what research actually tells us. http://www.vox.com/2014/4/15/5594280/no-the-love-hormone-oxytocin-wont-stop-your-spouse-from-cheating It’s a nice example of how media coverage simplifies complex and only partially understood processes. We’ve seen elsewhere how dopamine has received similar coverage.   2)…
  • Unnerving News

    Jennifer Hlusko
    17 Apr 2014 | 9:23 am
    This revolutionary research at Harvard needs to result in change in how we, as parents, advise and guide our children’s choices. We cannot be complacent based on outdated information. Similar to the compelling data on concussions, we need to rethink the magnitude of the long-term risks associated with these events. Please read this article. Just 1 Rock Concert or Football Game May Cause Permanent Hearing Damage  Scientific American | Gary Stix | April 14, 2014 A single exposure to loud but not deafening noise may be enough to precipitate irreparable harm to nerves in the…
  • The Neuroscience of Memory

    Anna Pons
    17 Apr 2014 | 9:12 am
    Published on Mar 13, 2014, You Tube. Lecturing for the Royal Institution, Video found through the blog Tracing Knowledge. Eleanor Anne Maguire (born 1970)[1]FMedSci is an Irishneuroscientist at University College London[9][10][11][12][13]  Fascinating  48min long lecture- as well as 10 min. of interesting questions and answers- about the brain, memory and the latest technological advances which help us understand our “universe within”. Ms Maguire says that memory “is not about the past, but about the future.” memory is a survival strategy, to help us decide…
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    Journal of Neuroscience current issue

  • Limb and Trunk Mechanisms for Balance Control during Locomotion in Quadrupeds

    Musienko, P. E., Deliagina, T. G., Gerasimenko, Y. P., Orlovsky, G. N., Zelenin, P. V.
    16 Apr 2014 | 9:01 am
    In quadrupeds, the most critical aspect of postural control during locomotion is lateral stability. However, neural mechanisms underlying lateral stability are poorly understood. Here, we studied lateral stability in decerebrate cats walking on a treadmill with their hindlimbs. Two destabilizing factors were used: a brief lateral push of the cat and a sustained lateral tilt of the treadmill. It was found that the push caused considerable trunk bending and twisting, as well as changes in the stepping pattern, but did not lead to falling. Due to postural reactions, locomotion with normal body…
  • In Sync: Metaphor, Mechanism or Marker of Mutual Understanding?

    Stolk, A.
    16 Apr 2014 | 9:01 am
  • Different Neuronal Computations of Spatial Working Memory for Multiple Locations within versus across Visual Hemifields

    Matsushima, A., Tanaka, M.
    16 Apr 2014 | 9:01 am
    Spatial working memory is one of the most studied cognitive functions, serving as a model system to decipher computational principles of the brain. Although neuronal mechanisms for remembering a single location have been well elucidated, little is known about memory for multiple locations. Here, we examined the activities of prefrontal neurons during monkeys remembered positions of one or two visual cue(s). When the two cues were presented across the left and right visual fields, neurons exhibited a comparable response to the activity for the preferred cue presented alone. When the two cues…
  • Seeing Scenes: Topographic Visual Hallucinations Evoked by Direct Electrical Stimulation of the Parahippocampal Place Area

    Megevand, P., Groppe, D. M., Goldfinger, M. S., Hwang, S. T., Kingsley, P. B., Davidesco, I., Mehta, A. D.
    16 Apr 2014 | 9:01 am
    In recent years, functional neuroimaging has disclosed a network of cortical areas in the basal temporal lobe that selectively respond to visual scenes, including the parahippocampal place area (PPA). Beyond the observation that lesions involving the PPA cause topographic disorientation, there is little causal evidence linking neural activity in that area to the perception of places. Here, we combined functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and intracranial EEG (iEEG) recordings to delineate place-selective cortex in a patient implanted with stereo-EEG electrodes for presurgical…
  • A Neural Code for Looming and Receding Motion Is Distributed over a Population of Electrosensory ON and OFF Contrast Cells

    Clarke, S. E., Longtin, A., Maler, L.
    16 Apr 2014 | 9:01 am
    Object saliency is based on the relative local-to-background contrast in the physical signals that underlie perceptual experience. As such, contrast-detecting neurons (ON/OFF cells) are found in many sensory systems, responding respectively to increased or decreased intensity within their receptive field centers. This differential sensitivity suggests that ON and OFF cells initiate segregated streams of information for positive and negative sensory contrast. However, while recording in vivo from the ON and OFF cells of Apteronotus leptorhynchus, we report that the reversal of stimulus motion…
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    Sports Are 80 Percent Mental

  • Marathons Are Tough On The Heart, But Training Helps

    20 Apr 2014 | 2:20 pm
    Now that it’s mid-April, thousands of amateur runners are realizing the time has come to get serious about their Spring marathon training plans.  The easier 4-6 mile weekday jogs increase quickly into 10-15 mile weekend long runs.  For those new to endurance distances, this jump in mileage can put a strain not only on the legs but also on the heart.  In fact, there’s been some confusing research in the press lately with some claiming a marathon can do some coronary damage while others praising the health benefits of the cardiovascular training.First, the encouraging news.
  • Maybe Your Kids Don't Want To Play Sports

    9 Apr 2014 | 7:54 pm
    Has this happened to you?  Your daughter comes home from soccer practice and defiantly declares, “I can’t stand my coach, my team is awful and I don’t even like soccer.  I quit!”  Your parental thermostat kicks in as you try to gently lower the temperature in the room with those responses that all kids despise, “Oh, come on now, it can’t be that bad” or “But you’re good at soccer” and finally, “You know our rule, once you start something, you have to finish it. You can’t quit.”You’ll talk to her coach, you’ll buy her new cleats, even get her on a…
  • Achieving The Rise Of Flow: An Interview With Steven Kotler

    20 Mar 2014 | 7:57 pm
    Ted LigetyTwo years before he stood on the Sochi Olympics podium with a gold medal around his neck, alpine skier Ted Ligety took a trip to Alaska.  There was no qualifying race or Team USA training session, but rather a heli-skiing trek in the Chugach Mountains with a film crew from Warren Miller Entertainment.  The risk level was high, even for one of the best skiers in the world.  But that's what keeps the best on the knife's edge balance of skill and fear.  To survive requires being in the state of Flow."The Flow State is a place where the impossible becomes possible,…
  • How To Measure An Athlete's Intangibles

    13 Mar 2014 | 12:34 pm
    Dr. Bob Schafer (seated) of Prophecy Sciences at SSAC14One of the unmistakable takeaways from the recent MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference is that teams across all sports are looking for the “next big thing” that will offer a competitive advantage.  For most of the 2,000 attendees at this year’s event, the holy grail was assumed to be buried somewhere in the Big Data world of sports statistics and their endless permutations and combinations.  Unfortunately, data of any kind represents the past rather than a true prediction of your team’s future performance. Stats can…
  • Why NFL Combine Results For Jadeveon Clowney And Johnny Manziel Don't Matter

    2 Mar 2014 | 6:25 am
    Jadeveon Clowney at 2014 NFL Scouting CombineWith the Olympics over and the NBA and NHL not yet into playoff mode, the NFL knows its fans need a shot of football in late winter. To prepare us (and the team general managers and coaches) for the NFL Draft in early May, 300 of the best college football players visited Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis last week for the annual NFL Scouting Combine.While there are specific drills that the players go through for each position, it is the six workout drills, testing strength, agility, jumping and speed, that generate the most TV coverage and…
 
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    Brain Posts

  • Religious Belief Linked to Brain Cortex Thickness

    22 Apr 2014 | 7:21 am
    In a previous post, I reviewed a longitudinal study of religious belief and major depressionThis study by Lisa Miller and colleagues found a reduced risk of depression in subjects who rated religious belief or spirituality as an important factor in their lives.Reduction in depression risk with religiosity/spirituality was largest (90% smaller risk) in those with a family history of depression.This correlation may not be causal and may be explained by some common third factor between religion and depression.A recent study explored further a potential mechanism for a protective effect of…
  • Religious Belief and Depression Resilience

    15 Apr 2014 | 8:43 am
    Identifying risk factors for brain disorders is a key element in clinical research.Understanding protective or resilience factors for brain disorders is also important and receiving increased attention in clinical research.Factors that promote resilience to brain disorders may come from a variety of domains. Religious belief is one domain receiving attention as a potential resilience factor.Miller and colleagues recently published a longitudinal study of religious belief and risk for major depression.The key elements of research design in their study included:Subjects: This study…
  • The Genetics of Religious Belief

    7 Apr 2014 | 8:37 am
    In the next few posts, I will review some of the recent brain-related research related to religious belief.Religious belief and religious affiliation run in families. This effect is not surprising as parents influence their children's type of religious experience during development.However, there is increasing evidence that adult religious belief and behavior is also influenced by genetic factors independent of family environment experience.Twin studies represent a powerful research model to tease out genetic from environmental influences. Twin studies exam differences in concordance rate…
  • Is Insomnia Relief Just a Mouse Click Away?

    27 Mar 2014 | 9:51 am
    Cognitive behavioral treatment of insomnia (CBT-I) is increasingly recognized as an important treatment option.However, in some regions of the U.S. and the world, access to this type of therapy is limited and may be cost prohibitive.A recent review of the diagnosis and treatment of insomnia noted the promise of internet-based CBT-I. The promise of internet-based CBT-I is based on several randomized controlled trials.Ritterband and colleagues published a study 44 subjects randomized to internet-based CBT-I or a wait list.  The primary outcome measure in this study was the…
  • When Sleeping Pills Don't Work

    25 Mar 2014 | 8:08 am
    Hypnotics or sleeping pills typically are effective and indicated as an option for the short-term relief of transient insomnia.However, a minority of individuals report persistent insomnia and lack of sleep despite use of a hypnotic.When drugs that typically treat a disorder fail to work, it is important to reconsider the accuracy of the diagnosis.Yun Li and colleagues from China recently published a case report illustrating this issue in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine.They reported on a 57 year old women who suffered from insomnia for over ten years.  During this period, she had…
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    Psychology Headlines Around the World

  • Child Bullying Victims Still Suffering at 50, Study Finds

    Google News - Health
    21 Apr 2014 | 4:05 am
    Source: Google News - HealthChildren who are bullied can still experience negative effects on their physical and mental health more than 40 years later, say researchers from King's College London. Their study tracked 7,771 children born in 1958 from the age of seven until 50. Forty years on, bullying takes its toll on health and wealth Reuters Bullying scars 'remain after 40 years' Irish Examiner Childhood bullying can cause problems decades later
  • Does It Work to Pay Pregnant Smokers to Quit?

    ScienceDaily
    21 Apr 2014 | 4:04 am
    Source: ScienceDailySmoking prevalence varies by socioeconomic status -- particularly in terms of educational attainment -- putting economically-disadvantaged women at greater risk for smoking during pregnancy and related negative outcomes, including miscarriage, preterm birth, SIDS, and other later adverse effects. An approach using financial incentives has proven effective in increasing quitting and improving fetal growth among this population.
  • Transgender Candidate Runs for Parliament in India for First Time

    Time Magazine
    21 Apr 2014 | 4:04 am
    Source: Time MagazineJust a few days after India’s Supreme Court recognized a “third gender” option, a transgender woman in India is vying for a seat in parliament. Bharathi Kannamma, 53, is considered the first transgender person to be accepted as a candidate in a general election, AFP reports. She’s running as an independent candidate in the city of Madurai in the southern state of Tamil Nadu.
  • U.S. Special Forces Committing Suicide in Record Numbers

    Time Magazine
    21 Apr 2014 | 4:04 am
    Source: Time MagazineAccording to the head of Special Operations Command, more than a decade of fighting is taking a toll on the military's mental health. U.S. special operations forces personnel are committing suicide in record numbers, according to a top military official, due to the traumatic effects of years of war.
  • Ugandan Men Face Life Sentence in Trial on Homosexuality Charges

    The Guardian
    17 Apr 2014 | 4:09 am
    Source: The GuardianKim Mukisa and Jackson Mukasa face life imprisonment if found guilty in first such case since introduction of new anti-gay law Two Ugandan men will go on trial next month accused of homosexuality, the first people to be charged since a controversial new anti-gay law was passed. Prosecutors said on Wednesday that they had sufficient evidence against Kim Mukisa and Jackson Mukasa, who denied the charges when they first appeared in court earlier...
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    The Neurocritic

  • The Life and Brain of H.M.

    21 Apr 2014 | 1:03 am
    Dr. Suzanne Corkin on H.M.One of the highlights of this year's Cognitive Neuroscience Society Meeting was Dr. Corkin's keynote address about Henry Molaison the person and his lasting contribution to the neurobiology of memory. In her more timely recap of the meeting, Daisy Yuhas included this moving quote from H.M., who could not remember meeting Corkin even after decades of testing:Corkin also discussed the man behind the initials, describing his gentle and remarkably upbeat disposition, given that he was repeatedly confronting a confusing, context-free present. Her talk included a poignant…
  • Post-Publication Peer Review, Systemic Changes to Biomedical Research, NIH R01A7s, and Social Media

    17 Apr 2014 | 10:07 pm
    My, that title sure is a mouthful, isn’t it? That's because in the span of a few short days, we’ve seen the following:(1) An invited review in Neuron on the role of blogs, Twitter, Facebook, and online forums such as PubPeer, PubMed Commons, and journal comments in shaping discussions about published research papers.(2) A commentary in PNAS about the sad structural state of biomedical research in the U.S. and  suggestions for change.(3) A MAJOR revision in how NIH (National Institutes of Health) reviews research grants.These communiques intersect because of how rapidly we can discuss…
  • Let's play "Guess the Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience Speaker" (soundbytes from #cns2014)

    11 Apr 2014 | 8:04 pm
    Another CNS meeting, another series of delayed blog posts from The Neurocritic. Long in the vanguard of the slow blogging movement, these conference recaps have attained the cult status of unplanned obsolescence.Without further ado, let's begin our walk down memory lane...The 21st Annual Cognitive Neuroscience Society Meeting was held in Boston from April 48, 2014. We'll kick off our recapping festivities with a contest of "Name that Soundbyte!" from an invited symposium on how developmental cognitive neuroscience can (and cannot) inform policy.Invited Symposium Session 1Sunday, April 6 3:00…
  • Contest to Reduce Implicit Racial Bias Shows Empathy and Perspective-Taking Don't Work

    30 Mar 2014 | 3:46 pm
    NCAA college basketball isn't the only hot competition involving a team from the University of Virginia.  UVa Psychology Professor Brian Nosek is one of three founders of Project Implicit, a collaborative nonprofit dedicated to the study of implicit social cognition — how unconscious thoughts and feelings can influence attitudes and behavior.Prof Nosek is also heavily involved in the Open Science and Replication movements. Along with graduate student Calvin Lai, he led a multinational group of 22 other researchers in a competition to see who could devise the best…
  • Hippocampal Pathology in California Sea Lions with Domoic Acid-Induced Temporal Lobe Epilepsy

    23 Mar 2014 | 9:00 pm
    In 1987, over 100 Canadians became ill after eating cultivated mussels from Prince Edward Island. Symptoms included the typical gastrointestinal issues, but serious neurological findings such as disorientation, confusion, and memory loss were also observed (Perl et al., 1990). In the worst cases, the patients developed seizures or went into coma. Three elderly people died. The cognitive changes were persistent, and had not resolved within a two year follow-up.The toxin was identified as domoic acid, which received the…
 
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    The Beautiful Brain

  • Science on Screen

    Ben Ehrlich
    27 Mar 2014 | 3:12 pm
    On March 31st, seventeen independent theaters in cities across the country will host Science on Screen, an evening pairing mainstream film and scientific presentation. Supported by the Coolidge Corner Theater and The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, Science on Screen will feature different programs nationwide If you live in New York City, for example, Brooklyn’s BAM is showing Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, followed by a discussion of emotion and memory with Joseph LeDoux, director of the Emotional Brain Institute at New York University. See if your local theater is…
  • Fridtjof the Great

    Ben Ehrlich
    24 Feb 2014 | 8:29 pm
    I never knew about Fridtjof Nansen. His 1887 doctoral thesis argued for the independence of the nerve cell, making him one of the earliest defenders of what would be called “the neuron doctrine.” He promptly quit neuroscience and went on an arctic expedition across Greenland. Then he went to the North Pole. He topped it all off with a Nobel Peace Prize, after serving his native Norway in the League of Nations for a decade. His lasting legacy, however, is probably the “Nansen passport” for stateless persons, still recognized by over fifty countries. “It is better…
  • Art and the Default Mode Network

    Noah Hutton
    16 Feb 2014 | 11:37 pm
    A recent symposium presented by Columbia and NYU explored what happens in our brains when we’re at rest, and why those same brain regions are crucial when we view art. “It’s not about merging disciplines,” David Freedberg told a crowd gathered at NYU’s Silver Center for Arts and Science last week, “it’s about listening.” Freedberg, an eminent art historian who serves as the director if the Italian Academy at Columbia University, was speaking about the alternately tense and productive relationship between the humanities and neurosciences. This is an intersection that he…
  • 2014 Congress of the International Association of Empirical Aesthetics

    Noah Hutton
    10 Jan 2014 | 12:31 pm
    This just in from the IAEA– not the International Atomic Energy Association, but rather the International Association of Empirical Aesthetics. They will be holding their 2014 summit in NYC in August, and have issued an open call for abstracts, as well as artistic submissions. Researchers who wish to present their artworks will have an opportunity to speak about their work at the IAEA event as well. The 2014 IAEA Congress is an opportunity for researchers and scholars from different domains and countries to present and share empirical research on aesthetics, creativity, and the…
  • Interesting New Autism Research

    Sam McDougle
    6 Nov 2013 | 9:52 pm
    A new research article, published online for the journal Nature, shows that infants who were later diagnosed with autism spent significantly less time focusing on people’s eyes than infants who were not later diagnosed. Warren R. Jones and Ami Klin, of Emory University, co-authored the paper. The New York Times recently ran a feature on the research, which discusses the implications for early brain development and improvements in autism diagnostics. If you’d like to look at how this line of research potentially relates to some broader theory in the field of autism research, one…
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    The Neurocritic

  • The Life and Brain of H.M.

    The Neurocritic
    21 Apr 2014 | 1:03 am
    Dr. Suzanne Corkin on H.M.One of the highlights of this year's Cognitive Neuroscience Society Meeting was Dr. Corkin's keynote address about Henry Molaison the person and his lasting contribution to the neurobiology of memory. In her more timely recap of the meeting, Daisy Yuhas included this moving quote from H.M., who could not remember meeting Corkin even after decades of testing:Corkin also discussed the man behind the initials, describing his gentle and remarkably upbeat disposition, given that he was repeatedly confronting a confusing, context-free present. Her talk included a poignant…
  • Post-Publication Peer Review, Systemic Changes to Biomedical Research, NIH R01A7s, and Social Media

    The Neurocritic
    17 Apr 2014 | 10:07 pm
    My, that title sure is a mouthful, isn’t it? That's because in the span of a few short days, we’ve seen the following:(1) An invited review in Neuron on the role of blogs, Twitter, Facebook, and online forums such as PubPeer, PubMed Commons, and journal comments in shaping discussions about published research papers.(2) A commentary in PNAS about the sad structural state of biomedical research in the U.S. and  suggestions for change.(3) A MAJOR revision in how NIH (National Institutes of Health) reviews research grants.These communiques intersect because of how rapidly we can discuss…
  • Let's play "Guess the Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience Speaker" (soundbytes from #cns2014)

    The Neurocritic
    11 Apr 2014 | 8:04 pm
    Another CNS meeting, another series of delayed blog posts from The Neurocritic. Long in the vanguard of the slow blogging movement, these conference recaps have attained the cult status of unplanned obsolescence.Without further ado, let's begin our walk down memory lane...The 21st Annual Cognitive Neuroscience Society Meeting was held in Boston from April 48, 2014. We'll kick off our recapping festivities with a contest of "Name that Soundbyte!" from an invited symposium on how developmental cognitive neuroscience can (and cannot) inform policy.Invited Symposium Session 1Sunday, April 6 3:00…
  • Contest to Reduce Implicit Racial Bias Shows Empathy and Perspective-Taking Don't Work

    The Neurocritic
    30 Mar 2014 | 3:46 pm
    NCAA college basketball isn't the only hot competition involving a team from the University of Virginia.  UVa Psychology Professor Brian Nosek is one of three founders of Project Implicit, a collaborative nonprofit dedicated to the study of implicit social cognition — how unconscious thoughts and feelings can influence attitudes and behavior.Prof Nosek is also heavily involved in the Open Science and Replication movements. Along with graduate student Calvin Lai, he led a multinational group of 22 other researchers in a competition to see who could devise the best…
  • Hippocampal Pathology in California Sea Lions with Domoic Acid-Induced Temporal Lobe Epilepsy

    The Neurocritic
    23 Mar 2014 | 9:00 pm
    In 1987, over 100 Canadians became ill after eating cultivated mussels from Prince Edward Island. Symptoms included the typical gastrointestinal issues, but serious neurological findings such as disorientation, confusion, and memory loss were also observed (Perl et al., 1990). In the worst cases, the patients developed seizures or went into coma. Three elderly people died. The cognitive changes were persistent, and had not resolved within a two year follow-up.The toxin was identified as domoic acid, which received the…
 
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    The Brain from Top to Bottom Blog - Intermediate Level

  • The Collective Intelligence of Human Groups

    Bruno Dubuc
    15 Apr 2014 | 9:16 am
    In psychology, the concept of general intelligence in individuals and the use of IQ tests to measure it are controversial topics, to say the least. One frequently cited piece of evidence for the existence of such intelligence is that this single variable predicts from one-third to one-half of individuals’ scores on a variety of distinct cognitive tasks. In a study published in the journal Science in October 2010, psychologists from three U.S. universities reported that they had discovered a factor that they called collective intelligence and that is similar to general intelligence but…
  • Will You Be the Same Person in 10 Years As You are Now?

    Bruno Dubuc
    31 Mar 2014 | 12:24 pm
    Our thought processes are far from being as reliable and logical as we often think they are. In reality, our brains are constantly playing tricks on us, ranging from simple optical illusions to change blindness and other cognitive biases to the illusion that the self is a continuous entity that has the experiences that make up our lives. Scientists are discovering more and more ways in which the brain fails to operate according to the simple common sense that we would expect. One notable example is the way that we perceive ourselves over time. In this regard, a study published in the…
  • Science Starting To Identify the Molecular Bases of the Sense of Touch

    Bruno Dubuc
    17 Mar 2014 | 12:23 pm
    When it comes to senses such as vision, scientists have known for some time which molecules are responsible for transduction—the conversion of physical stimuli into nerve impulses. Until recently, however, the molecular bases of the sene of touch remained ill-defined. But in an article first published online in the journal Nature in December 2012, DrZhiqiang Yan and his research team from the University of California at San Francisco (UCSF) reported having found what they believed was the missing link in transduction for the sense of touch. This link is NOMPC (No mechanoreceptor potential…
  • The Various Speeds at Which We Perceive Time

    Bruno Dubuc
    3 Mar 2014 | 1:44 pm
    Our perception of how fast time passes is amazingly subjective. When we are children, our summer vacations from school seem to stretch on forever. When we are grownups, we are often surprised to realize how long it has been since some major event occurred—Hurricane Katrina was over eight years ago, and the nuclear disaster at Chernobyl almost 28 years ago! Thus we frequently underestimate or overestimate elapsed time. But what are the factors that push our estimates in one direction or the other? Are there some time scales that are affected and others that are not? Are there certain areas…
  • Lasting Effects of Meditation

    Bruno Dubuc
    18 Feb 2014 | 9:31 am
    A brain-imaging study published in the November 2012 issue of the journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience seems to confirm past brain-imaging studies which found that meditation can help people pay better attention and manage stress more effectively. But the November 2012 study goes a bit further: it also shows that such measurable positive effects of meditation seem to continue even when the individual in question is not meditating. The November 2012 study looked at the effects of two different kinds of meditation on the ability to manage one’s emotions. It compared two groups of…
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    Bioassociate Industry Blog

  • Latest Bioassociate for SeekingAlpha: Tonix's Clinical-Stage Drug, TNX-102SL, Is Completely Unneeded

    Julia Skripka-Serry
    29 Mar 2014 | 3:46 am
    Below is Bioassociate's latest article for SeekingAlpha, "Tonix's Clinical-Stage Drug, TNX-102SL, Is Completely Unneeded", tell us what you think!SummaryTonix Pharmaceuticals' clinical-stage product - TNX-102SL is a disintegrating sublingual tablet containing a very low dose of cyclobenzaprine, targeted for bedtime administration for the treatment of Fibromyalgia.TNXP was a sub-$5 stock following its recent NASDAQ up-listing until a series of articles drove a stock price rally, regardless of any real fundamental advancements or news.Tonix's reformulated cyclobenzaprine doesn't provide any…
  • Bioassociate Reiterates BUY Recommendation on RedHill Biopharma

    Julia Skripka-Serry
    11 Feb 2014 | 5:24 am
    In a report published on February 9, 2014, Bioassociate reiterated a Buy rating on RedHill Biopharma (NASDAQ: RDHL) (TASE: RDHL.TA), and set an ADS price target of $18.1. The report contains a detailed discussion of RedHill's pipeline advancements during the preceding months and adjusted cash flows.The Update Report is available at:http://www.bioassociate.com/redhill-biopharma-ltd-feb-5-2014-update-report/In the report, Bioassociate noted, "RedHill Biopharma has initiated late-stage clinical studies in the company's two leading programs - RHB-104 for the treatment of Crohn's Disease and…
  • Biotech & Pharma 2013 Licensing & Partnering Activity Review: Diminishing Upfronts, Increasing Platform Licenses Indicate Stronger Risk Aversion among Big Pharma

    Julia Skripka-Serry
    19 Jan 2014 | 9:14 am
    Let’s face it: everyone finally realized that Pharma’s traditional business model was only as good as the piles of money thrown at it every year. Now that players are feeling the pinch of financial crises and therapeutic droughts, some ingenious dynamics are beginning to play out on the dealmaking landscape. And to begin with, the bulky, disincentivized and unproductive in-house R&D monster is going away forever, leaving behind a legacy of chronic phobia of go-it-alone risky drug development ventures. So what is replacing the cumbersome in-house R&D? Risk-diluting options are.
  • Bioassociate wishes you a very happy 2014!

    Julia Skripka-Serry
    3 Jan 2014 | 5:43 am
  • 2013 Biotech & Pharma IPO Review – Most Popular Therapeutic trends, Trending Clinical Stages and post-IPO Winners & Losers

    Julia Skripka-Serry
    14 Dec 2013 | 5:52 am
    2013 was generally a good year for the markets (and underwriters!). The S&P 500 is up 26% on this time last year, with the NASDAQ composite running slightly higher at 30% - but not even close to the stellar 56% performance of the Biotech Index (fig 1). In fact, few events in other industries could compete with the Great Biotech IPO Fever of 2013, when the IPO conveyor belt went full overdrive, churning out an average of four biotechs a month into the public domain.Figure 1. Performance of the NASDAQ composite Index, the S&P500 and the NASDAQ Biotech Index, Dec 11, 2012 – Dec 11,…
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    Synaesthesia Discovery

  • Development of Synaesthesia through Dramatic Experiences

    Spring
    17 Apr 2014 | 6:41 am
    We were standing in front of a massive heritage home. It was like a medieval castle, but with a touch of French flavour. The structure was over powering us. The noise from the busy traffic was no longer noticeable. The agent came through the old heavy front door, and greeted us warmly. “Before we start, I have to warn you. The current lady owner is unwell. She can hardly manage this house. The house is not in a crispy condition. You will find it dirty and untidy.” That has explained the neglected yard, and the completely inaccessible side door, that was covered by overgrown grass,…
  • Rite of Passage: Synaesthesia and Love

    Spring
    7 Apr 2014 | 6:31 am
    Skye’s heart missed a beat at the sight of a gorgeous looking girl. A synaesthetic colourful ribbon was twirling around her with the colours changing and moving, just like how Skye sees beautiful music through his synaesthetic perception. Skye has a romantic soul. The curiosity in girls started early which was not surprising. One day when he was six, he asked Thomas to guess how many people would be living in his house when he was a grown-up. Before Thomas could answer, Skye said, “Four! My wife and I with our two children, a boy and a girl.” Over the years, there have been…
  • Time Travel Synaesthesia – Past, Present and Future

    Spring
    28 Mar 2014 | 6:04 am
    Skye and Thomas have been dreaming about inventing a time machine since they were very young. They often talk about their time travel ideas. A major triggering point of their time machine concept was the fear of death. Both thought if they could invent a time machine, none of us would die. I also think the idea was manifested by their strong time-space synaesthesia. One of children’s favourite cartoon shows is Regular Show. They were absolutely hooked by it. I didn’t realise that the real reason behind children’s love of Regular Show was the time machines portrayed in the…
  • Moving Pictures – Motion to Coloured Driver Synaesthesia

    Spring
    15 Mar 2014 | 3:42 am
    Today reminds me of the day when I first discovered my son Skye’s in-depth synaesthesia. The indescribable feeling on that day came back so vividly after the discovery of my children’s motion to coloured driver synaesthesia. Thomas went out with his grandfather on their usual weekend bus and train trip this morning. After I picked him up from the railway station in the afternoon, we had our usual chat about his day in the car. Thomas then asked me what Skye and I did today while he was out. “We went for a walk. Oh there was something amazing. Skye told me about his…
  • Perception – People Synaesthesia

    Spring
    5 Mar 2014 | 4:33 am
    Sivananda Saraswati, a Hindu spiritual teacher, who wrote nearly 300 books on yoga and a range of subjects, gave a philosophical view of perception in his “Sure Ways of Success in Life”. The senses are the gatekeepers of the wonderful factory of the mind. They bring into the mental factory matter for manufacture. Light vibrations, sound vibrations, and the like, are brought inside through these avenues. The sensations are first converted into percepts by the mind, which then presents these percepts to the intellect. The intellect converts these percepts into concepts or ideas. The…
 
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    Your Brain Health

  • Are you afraid of happiness? Take the quiz and find out.

    Sarah McKay
    10 Apr 2014 | 3:03 am
    Underlying most of the traditional research on happiness is the assumption that personal happiness is a valuable goal that should be actively pursued.You’re not ‘happy’?  Well, that‘s a cause for concern! UNhappiness, on the other hand, is to be prevented, avoided or eliminated at all costs. Many people look to self-help, coaching or therapy because […]The post Are you afraid of happiness? Take the quiz and find out. appeared first on Your Brain Health.
  • Neuroscience facts to blow your mind [infographic]

    Sarah McKay
    3 Apr 2014 | 12:00 pm
    Thanks to Visually for this fascinating infographic.  The post Neuroscience facts to blow your mind [infographic] appeared first on Your Brain Health.
  • April Walking Book Club: Thrive by Arianna Huffington

    Sarah McKay
    31 Mar 2014 | 1:00 am
    Our eulogies celebrate our lives very differently from the way society defines success. They don’t commemorate our long hours in the office, our promotions, or our sterling PowerPoint presentations as we relentlessly raced to climb up the career ladder. They are not about our resumes – they are about cherished memories, shared adventures, small kindnesses and […]The post April Walking Book Club: Thrive by Arianna Huffington appeared first on Your Brain Health.
  • Brain-immune communication: meet the expert Dr Mark Hutchinson.

    Sarah McKay
    27 Mar 2014 | 12:00 pm
    Meet Dr Mark Hutchinson.  Mark is an Australian Research Council Research Fellow in the School of Medical Sciences at the University of Adelaide where he has recently been appointed to Associate Professor.  Mark started his undergraduate studies at the University of Adelaide in 1996 and graduated with a BSc in 1998. He did honours in ‘99, a […]The post Brain-immune communication: meet the expert Dr Mark Hutchinson. appeared first on Your Brain Health.
  • The neuroscience of how chronic pain rewires your brain [infographic]

    Sarah McKay
    25 Mar 2014 | 2:00 pm
    from Thanks to totalinjury.com for this informative infographicThe post The neuroscience of how chronic pain rewires your brain [infographic] appeared first on Your Brain Health.
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