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Latest Human brain Stories

2012-06-27 10:28:24

Researchers have long been interested in discovering the ways that human brains represent thoughts through a complex interplay of electrical signals. Recent improvements in brain recording and statistical methods have given researchers unprecedented insight into the physical processes under-lying thoughts. For example, researchers have begun to show that it is possible to use brain recordings to reconstruct aspects of an image or movie clip someone is viewing, a sound someone is hearing or...

2012-06-21 21:07:02

Findings could open avenues for improved therapies for a range of conditions Researchers at McGill University have discovered the cause of an inherited form of epilepsy. The disease, known as double-cortex syndrome, primarily affects females and arises from mutations on a gene located on the X chromosome. Drs. Susanne Bechstedt and Gary Brouhard of the Department of Biology have used a highly advanced microscope to discover how these mutations cause a malformation of the human brain. The...

Psychologists Reveal How Brain Performs 'Motor Chunking' Tasks
2012-06-12 15:29:40

You pick up your cell phone and dial the new number of a friend. Ten numbers. One. Number. At. A. Time. Because you haven't actually typed the number before, your brain handles each button press separately, as a sequence of distinct movements. After dialing the number a few more times, you find yourself typing it out as a series of three successive bursts of movement: the area code, the first three numbers and then the last four numbers. Those three separate chunks allow you to type the...

Area Of Brain Identified That Determines Distance From Which Sound Originates
2012-06-12 06:40:52

MGH team uses functional imaging to find neurons sensitive to distance but not loudness Researchers at the Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging at Massachusetts General Hospital have identified a portion of the brain responsible for determining how far away a sound originates, a process that does not rely solely on how loud the sound is. The investigators' report, which will appear in the early edition of Proceeding of the National Academy of Sciences, is receiving early online release...

2012-06-07 09:21:21

Stress may affect brain development in children – altering growth of a specific piece of the brain and abilities associated with it – according to researchers at the University of Wisconsin—Madison. "There has been a lot of work in animals linking both acute and chronic stress to changes in a part of the brain called the prefrontal cortex, which is involved in complex cognitive abilities like holding on to important information for quick recall and use," says Jamie...

2012-05-29 02:27:19

OULU, Finland, May 29, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- - Brand new research findings from Finland published in a peer-reviewed medical journal A recent placebo-controlled study reveals new evidence of trans-cranial bright light's effect to brain functions when administered through the ear. Bright light stimulation was found to increase activity in brain areas related to processing of visual sensory information and tactile stimuli. The findings constitute the first ever published...

2012-05-23 18:54:40

Brains that maintain healthy nerve connections as we age help keep us sharp in later life, new research funded by the charity Age UK has found. Older people with robust brain 'wiring' — that is, the nerve fibers that connect different, distant brain areas — can process information quickly and that this makes them generally smarter, the study suggests. According to the findings, joining distant parts of the brain together with better wiring improves mental performance,...

2012-05-22 21:41:23

University of Georgia researchers have developed a map of the human brain that shows great promise as a new guide to the inner workings of the body's most complex and critical organ. With this map, researchers hope to create a next-generation brain atlas that will be an alternative option to the atlas created by German anatomist Korbinian Brodmann more than 100 years ago, which is still commonly used in clinical and research settings. Tianming Liu, assistant professor of computer...

2012-05-21 06:25:23

OULU, Finland, May 21, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- More evidence of the effectiveness of bright light directed at the brain A new study by Oulu University found large amounts of a light-sensitive OPN4-protein, melanopsin [http://www.valkee.com/uk/science.html#navigation ], in the human brain. The mood-enhancing influence and circadian pacemaking properties of bright light when administered through eyes has been shown in earlier studies to be based on the OPN4-protein. In those...

Effect Of Acid In The Brain
2012-05-18 13:57:21

UI team develops new way to look at brain function University of Iowa neuroscientist John Wemmie, M.D., Ph.D., is interested in the effect of acid in the brain. His studies suggest that increased acidity or low pH, in the brain is linked to panic disorders, anxiety, and depression. But his work also suggests that changes in acidity are important for normal brain activity too. "We are interested in the idea that pH might be changing in the functional brain because we've been hot on the...