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Latest Amygdala Stories

2011-05-04 15:03:20

A new study from Karolinska Institutet in Sweden shows that the brain has built-in mechanisms that trigger an automatic reaction to someone who refuses to share. The reaction derives from the amygdala, an older part of the brain. The subjects' sense of justice was challenged in a two-player money-based fairness game, while their brain activity was registered by an MR scanner. When bidders made unfair suggestions as to how to share the money, they were often punished by their partners even if...

2011-05-03 14:36:44

Study of jazz musicians reveals how the brain processes improvisations A pianist is playing an unknown melody freely without reading from a musical score. How does the listener's brain recognize if this melody is improvised or if it is memorized? Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences in Leipzig investigated jazz musicians to discover which brain areas are especially sensitive to features of improvised behavior. Among these are the amygdala and a...

2011-05-02 23:35:21

Nurses who care for patients with dementia now have a tailored approach to dental hygiene for their charges, thanks to a pilot study by a team of nurses. "Poor oral health can lead to pneumonia and cardiovascular disease as well as periodontal disease," said Rita A. Jablonski, even though these illnesses are not usually associated with the mouth. According to Jablonski, assistant professor of nursing, Penn State, persons with dementia resist care when they feel threatened. In general, these...

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2011-04-21 10:45:01

Breakthrough study offers hope for targeted treatment of stress-related disorders A team of neuroscientists at the University of Leicester, UK, in collaboration with researchers from Poland and Japan, has announced a breakthrough in the understanding of the 'brain chemistry' that triggers our response to highly stressful and traumatic events. The discovery of a critical and previously unknown pathway in the brain that is linked to our response to stress was announced April 20 in the journal...

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2011-04-06 11:15:50

Drugs like marijuana act on naturally occurring receptors in the brain called cannabinoid receptors. However, the mechanisms by which these drugs produce their sensory and mood altering effects within the brain are largely unknown. Research led by Steven Laviolette at The University of Western Ontario has now identified a critical brain pathway responsible for the effects of cannabinoid drugs on how the brain processes emotional information. The findings, published in The Journal of...

2011-03-15 07:53:19

(Ivanhoe Newswire) "“ Adolescence is usually characterized as a tumultuous time. Previous research has pointed to the immature brain as a major cause, but now, this unique study reveals that some brain changes associated with adolescence may not be driving teens towards risky behavior but may actually reflect a decrease in susceptibility to peer pressure. Subcortical neural systems associated with emotional responses are believed to mature earlier than the higher cortical areas that...

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2011-03-10 13:59:11

Study uses NSF-supported technology to identify neuronal circuitry A new study sheds light--both literally and figuratively--on the intricate brain cell connections responsible for anxiety. Scientists at Stanford University recently used light to activate mouse neurons and precisely identify neural circuits that increase or decrease anxiety-related behaviors. Pinpointing the origin of anxiety brings psychiatric professionals closer to understanding anxiety disorders, the most common class of...

2011-03-09 16:32:53

Stimulation of a distinct brain circuit that lies within a brain structure typically associated with fearfulness produces the opposite effect: Its activity, instead of triggering or increasing anxiety, counters it. That's the finding in a paper by Stanford University School of Medicine researchers to be published online March 9 in Nature. In the study, Karl Deisseroth, MD, PhD, and his colleagues employed a mouse model to show that stimulating activity exclusively in this circuit enhances...

2011-03-09 16:00:19

Scans with fMRI show areas in brain that change in response to emotions as children enter adolescence Just when children are faced with intensifying peer pressure to misbehave, regions of the brain are actually blossoming in a way that heighten the ability to resist risky behavior, report researchers at three West Coast institutions. The findings -- detailed in the March 10 issue of the journal Neuron -- may give parents a sigh of relief regarding their kids as they enter adolescence and pay...

2011-03-09 15:53:03

Although it is quite common for a brief, unique experience to become part of our long-term memory, the underlying brain mechanisms associated with this type of learning are not well understood. Now, a new brain-imaging study looks at the neural activity associated with a specific type of rapid learning, insight. The research, published by Cell Press in the March 10 issue of the journal Neuron, reveals specific brain activity that occurs during an "A-ha!" moment that may help encode the new...


Word of the Day
cock-a-hoop
  • Exultant; jubilant; triumphant; on the high horse.
  • Tipsy; slightly intoxicated.
This word may come from the phrase 'to set cock on hoop,' or 'to drink festively.' Its origin otherwise is unclear. A theory, according to the Word Detective, is that it's a 'transliteration of the French phrase 'coq a huppe,' meaning a rooster displaying its crest ('huppe') in a pose of proud defiance.' Therefore, 'cock-a-hoop' would 'liken a drunken man to a boastful and aggressive rooster.'
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