Little animations trying to master a computer game are teaching neuroscience researchers how the brain evolves when faced with difficult tasks. Neuroscientists have programmed animated critters that they call 'animats.' The critters have a rudimentary neural system made of eight nodes: two sensors, two motors, and four internal computers that coordinate sensation, movement and memory.
Struggling to stand on one leg for less than 20 seconds was linked to an increased risk for stroke, small blood vessel damage in the brain, and reduced cognitive function in otherwise healthy people, a study has shown. One-legged standing time may be a simple test used to measure early signs of abnormalities in the brain associated with cognitive decline, cerebral small vessel disease and stroke.
A molecular process in the brain known to control eating that transforms white fat into brown fat has been uncovered by researchers. This process impacts how much energy we burn and how much weight we can lose, they report.
If you're not celiac, you're probably not gluten intolerant. That's according to an academic study that effectively overturned the results of a previous one in 2011, which had served as evidence that non-celiac gluten sensitivity (NCGS) is a real condition, Real Clear Science reports.
Experiments on monkeys are helping to increase our understanding of the human brain according to scientists in Oxford. Researchers allowed me exclusive access to witness procedures on macaques at the university's Biomedical Sciences building which are part of research into psychological disorders and autism. The building opened in 2008 in the face of opposition from animal rights groups.
Scientists have long known that sleep, memory and learning are deeply connected but how has remained a mystery. The question is, does the mechanism that promotes sleep also consolidate memory, or do two distinct processes work together? In other words, is memory consolidated during sleep because the brain is quiet or are memory neurons actually putting us to sleep? In a recent paper, researchers make a case for the latter.
Psilocybin, or "magic," mushrooms are a controlled substance with hallucinogenic effects. Recently, however, researchers have been studying this fungus as a potential mental health treatment. Here are 11 strange facts about "'shrooms."
People are focused on the external world and don’t enjoy spending much time alone thinking, according to a new study. The investigation found that most would rather be doing something -- possibly even hurting themselves -- than doing nothing or sitting alone with their thoughts.
......"What is striking," the investigators write, "is that simply being alone with their own thoughts for 15 minutes was apparently so aversive that it drove many participants to self-administer an electric shock that they had earlier said they would pay to avoid." Wilson and his team note that men tend to seek "sensations" more than women, which may explain why 67 percent of men self-administered shocks to the 25 percent of women who did......"
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