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Latest Dendrite Stories

2012-04-18 21:20:48

When a locust jumps and flies away from potential danger, the insect is reacting through a complex mathematical computation of sensory inputs completed within the nervous system. Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine have pinpointed how and when that computation is completed, resulting in a safe get-away. In the current edition of The Journal of Neuroscience, the researchers show that it happens within a single neuron. The locust uses two variables to determine when to jump -- speed...

2012-03-12 20:02:54

Peritectic solidification involves the nucleation and growth of the primary phase, the peritectic reaction of the primary phase with the remnant liquid phase, and the microstructural evolution of the product peritectic phase. It provides an effective approach for the synthesis or processing of various kinds of advanced materials. Professor WEI Bingbo and his group from the Department of Applied Physics, Northwestern Polytechnical University (NPU), in Xi'an, China, have demonstrated novel dual...

2011-12-06 11:25:39

Thanks to a new study of the retina, scientists at UC Santa Barbara have developed a greater understanding of how the nervous system becomes wired during early development. The findings reflect the expansion of developmental neurobiology and vision research at UCSB. The work is described in a recent publication of the Journal of Neuroscience. The research team examined the connectivity of nerve cells, called neurons, in mice. Neurons communicate with one another via synapses where the...

Brain Makes Memories Rhythmically
2011-10-04 04:55:18

The brain learns through changes in the strength of its synapses -- the connections between neurons -- in response to stimuli. Now, in a discovery that challenges conventional wisdom on the brain mechanisms of learning, UCLA neuro-physicists have found there is an optimal brain "rhythm," or frequency, for changing synaptic strength. And further, like stations on a radio dial, each synapse is tuned to a different optimal frequency for learning. The findings, which provide a grand-unified...

2011-09-21 12:11:07

A study in worms that are less than a millimetre long has yielded clues that may be important for understanding how nerves grow. A team of researchers from the Queensland Brain Institute (QBI) has probed the molecular mechanisms which prompt the development of dendrites, in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. The findings are published September 20 in the online, open access journal PLoS Biology. Dendrites are the branch-like structures in nerve cells, which receive electrochemical...

2011-09-13 12:13:23

The mechanism which adjusts how to receive a signal in coordination with dendritic morphology has been revealed Neurons in the brain play a role as an electric wire conveying an electrical signal. Because this electric wire is connected with various joints (synapse), various brain functions can occur. A neuron which has dendritic trees on it, receives the signals with many synapses located on those dendritic trees, and carries out functions by combining the received signals. The research...

2011-02-18 12:31:04

Findings challenge conventional wisdom of how neurons operate Neurons are complicated, but the basic functional concept is that synapses transmit electrical signals to the dendrites and cell body (input), and axons carry signals away (output). In one of many surprise findings, Northwestern University scientists have discovered that axons can operate in reverse: they can send signals to the cell body, too. It also turns out axons can talk to each other. Before sending signals in reverse, axons...

2011-01-26 17:36:20

The research may lead to a better understanding of diseases such as autism and schizophrenia Connected highways of nerve cells carry information to and from different areas of the brain and the rest of the nervous system. Scientists are trying to draw a complete atlas of these connections"”sometimes referred to as the "connectome""”to gain a better understanding of how the brain functions in health and disease. New research conducted at The Scripps Research Institute shows that...

2011-01-13 17:26:55

Neuroscientists at MIT's Picower Institute of Learning and Memory have uncovered why relatively minor details of an episode are sometimes inexplicably linked to long-term memories. The work is slated to appear in the Jan. 13 issue of Neuron. "Our finding explains, at least partially, why seemingly irrelevant information like the color of the shirt of an important person is remembered as vividly as more significant information such as the person's impressive remark when you recall an episode...

2010-12-23 02:09:04

A new study is unraveling the earliest events associated with neurodegenerative diseases characterized by abnormal accumulation of tau protein. The research, published by Cell Press in the December 22 issue of the journal Neuron, reveals how tau disrupts neuronal communication at synapses and may help to guide development of therapeutic strategies that precede irreversible neuronal degeneration. Tau normally contributes to the supportive framework of proteins in the cell. It is well...