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Last updated on April 18, 2014 at 14:46 EDT

Latest Neuroplasticity Stories

2010-07-21 11:51:18

Specialized brain training targeted at the regions of a rat's brain that process sound reversed many aspects of normal, age-related cognitive decline and improved the health of the brain cells, according to a new study from researchers at University of California, San Francisco. The results indicate that people who experience age-related cognitive decline, including slower mental processing and decreased response to new stimuli, might also benefit from specially designed mental exercises....

2010-07-15 13:28:14

A commercial brain fitness program has been shown to improve memory in older adults, at least in the period soon after training. The findings are the first to show that practicing simple visual tasks can improve the accuracy of short-term, or "working" visual memory. The research, led by scientists at UCSF, is also one of the first to measure both mental performance and changes in neural activity caused by a cognitive training program. In the study, healthy older participants trained on a...

2010-06-28 06:00:00

SAN FRANCISCO, June 28 /PRNewswire/ -- In spite of the recent economic downturn, revenues for digital technologies to assess, enhance and treat cognition, or digital brain health and fitness tools, grew 35% in 2009. "The convergence of demographic and policy trends with cognitive neuroscience discoveries and technological innovation is giving birth to a nascent marketplace that can fundamentally transform what brain health is, how it is measured, and how it is done," says Alvaro Fernandez,...

2010-06-25 15:02:17

Why is it that only some drug users become addicts? This is the question that has been addressed by the teams of Pier Vincenzo Piazza and Olivier Manzoni, at the Neurocentre Magendie in Bordeaux (Inserm unit 862). These researchers have just discovered that the transition to addiction could result from a persistent impairment of synaptic plasticity in a key structure of the brain. This is the first demonstration that a correlation exists between synaptic plasticity and the transition to...

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2010-06-16 13:57:51

The adult brain, long considered to be fixed in its wiring, is in fact remarkably dynamic. Neuroscientists once thought that the brain's wiring was fixed early in life, during a critical period beyond which changes were impossible. Recent discoveries have challenged that view, and now, research by scientists at Rockefeller University suggests that circuits in the adult brain are continually modified by experience. The researchers, led by Charles D. Gilbert, Arthur and Janet Ross Professor and...

2010-06-08 12:58:33

An innovative use of virtual reality is emerging as a major technique in brain recovery for stroke patients, Dr. Mindy Levin told the Canadian Stroke Congress today. "Our brains have an extraordinary plasticity which can limit the damage caused by some types of stroke," says Dr. Mindy Levin, professor in the School of Physical and Occupational Therapy at McGill University. "Together with Dr. Heidi Sviestrup from the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Ottawa, our rehab program...

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2010-06-04 07:00:00

Researchers at the University of Puerto Rico, School of Medicine have found a way to pharmacologically induce a memory of safety in the brain of rats. As reported in the June, 4 2010 issue of Science, administering brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) into the prefrontal cortex prevented rats from expressing fear to a tone that had been previously paired with a shock. Rats given BDNF acted as if they had received repeated presentations of the tone without the shock, a procedure called...

2010-06-03 17:15:40

Finding suggests possibilities for future treatment of anxiety disorders Researchers have found a way to pharmacologically induce a memory of safety in the brain of rats, mimicking the effect of training. The finding suggests possibilities for new treatments for individuals suffering from anxiety disorders. Rats normally freeze when they hear a tone they have been conditioned to associate with an electric shock. The reaction can be extinguished by repeatedly exposing the rats to the tone with...

2010-05-26 07:00:00

OAKLAND, Calif., May 26 /PRNewswire/ -- Most young people experience learning losses when they do not engage in educational activities during the summer break. According to the National Summer Learning Association (www.summerlearning.org), research spanning 100 years shows that students typically score lower on standardized tests at the end of summer vacation than they do on the same tests at the beginning of the summer. For students who are already struggling or reading below grade...

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2010-04-15 07:30:00

A cat can recognize a face faster and more efficiently than a supercomputer. That's one reason a feline brain is the model for a biologically-inspired computer project involving the University of Michigan. U-M computer engineer Wei Lu has taken a step toward developing this revolutionary type of machine that could be capable of learning and recognizing, as well as making more complex decisions and performing more tasks simultaneously than conventional computers can. Lu previously built a...