Social Neuroscience Advances
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Social Neuroscience Advances
Understanding ourselves and how we interact
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Researchers probe links between vision problems and cognition in a pioneering study

Researchers probe links between vision problems and cognition in a pioneering study | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it
The ability to perceive the world in three dimensions and to see clearly at near and far ranges is coordinated by key eye motor functions, including a mechanism called convergence and accommodation that allows us to see objects at different spatial...
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Fight-or-flight chemical prepares cells to shift brain from subdued to alert

Fight-or-flight chemical prepares cells to shift brain from subdued to alert | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it
A new study from The Johns Hopkins University shows that the brain cells surrounding a mouse's neurons do much more than fill space.
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Blocking brain’s ‘internal marijuana’ may trigger early Alzheimer’s deficits, study shows

Blocking brain’s ‘internal marijuana’ may trigger early Alzheimer’s deficits, study shows | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it
A new study led by investigators at the Stanford University School of Medicine has implicated the blocking of endocannabinoids — signaling substances that are the brain’s internal versions of the psychoactive chemicals in marijuana and hashish — in...
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Study examines how brain ‘reboots’ itself to consciousness after anesthesia

Study examines how brain ‘reboots’ itself to consciousness after anesthesia | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it
One of the great mysteries of anesthesia is how patients can be temporarily rendered completely unresponsive during surgery and then wake up again, with their memories and skills intact. A new study by Dr.
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Christof Koch and Gary Marcus Explain the Codes Used by the Brain - Allen Institute

Christof Koch and Gary Marcus Explain the Codes Used by the Brain - Allen Institute | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it
How does the brain speak to itself?

 

In What Is Life? (1944), one of the fundamental questions the physicist Erwin Schrödinger posed was whether there was some sort of “hereditary code-script” embedded in chromosomes. A decade later, Crick and Watson answered Schrödinger’s question in the affirmative. Genetic information was stored in the simple arrangement of nucleotides along long strings of DNA.

 

The question was what all those strings of DNA meant. As most schoolchildren now know, there was a code contained within: adjacent trios of nucleotides, so-called codons, are transcribed from DNA into transient sequences of RNA molecules, which are translated into the long chains of amino acids that we know as proteins. Cracking that code turned out to be a linchpin of virtually everything that followed in molecular biology. As it happens, the code for translating trios of nucleotides into amino acids (for example, the nucleotides AAG code for the amino acid lysine) turned out to be universal; cells in all organisms, large or small—bacteria, giant sequoias, dogs, and people—use the same code with minor variations. Will neuroscience ever discover something of similar beauty and power, a master code that allows us to interpret any pattern of neural activity at will?


Via Ashish Umre
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Modelling How Neurons Work Together

Modelling How Neurons Work Together | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it
Researchers develop a highly accurate representation of how neurons behave when performing complex movements.

Via Mlik Sahib
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Finding the Source of Emotions and Memory - MIT Technology Review

Finding the Source of Emotions and Memory - MIT Technology Review | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it


A better understanding of how memories, emotions, and cognition work in the brain could lead to ways to improve and manipulate such functions.

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Stress Hormone Linked to Short-Term Memory Loss as We Age

A new study at the University of Iowa reports a potential link between stress hormones and short-term memory loss in older adults.
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A New Twist on Neurological Disease: U-M Discovery Could Aid Patients with Dystonia, Parkinson's & More

New research in mice may finally open the door to solving long-standing mysteries about dystonia -- uncontrollable twisting and stiffening of neck and limb muscles -- and developing new options for patients who experience it alone or as a...
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How Our Brains Store Recent Memories, Cell by Single Cell

How Our Brains Store Recent Memories, Cell by Single Cell | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it

Confirming what neurocomputational theorists have long suspected, researchers at the Dignity Health Barrow Neurological Institute in Phoenix, Ariz. and University of California, San Diego School of Medicine report that the human brain locks down episodic memories in the hippocampus, committing each recollection to a distinct, distributed fraction of individual cells.

 

The findings, published in the June 16 Early Edition of PNAS, further illuminate the neural basis of human memory and may, ultimately, shed light on new treatments for diseases and conditions that adversely affect it, such as Alzheimer’s disease and epilepsy.

 

“To really understand how the brain represents memory, we must understand how memory is represented by the fundamental computational units of the brain – single neurons – and their networks,” said Peter N. Steinmetz, MD, PhD, program director of neuroengineering at Barrow and senior author of the study. “Knowing the mechanism of memory storage and retrieval is a critical step in understanding how to better treat the dementing illnesses affecting our growing elderly population.”


Via Ashish Umre
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The Science of Laughter with Sophie Scott - YouTube

Subscribe for the latest science videos: http://www.youtube.com/subscription_center?add_user=TheRoyalInstitution If you ask people what makes them laugh, the... (Why do we laugh?

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Differential pattern of functional brain plasticity after compassion and empathy training

Differential pattern of functional brain plasticity after compassion and empathy training | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it
Differential pattern of functional brain plasticity after compassion and empathy training http://t.co/Q0Eqi1Ec7E
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Researchers uncover new insights into developing rapid-acting antidepressant for treatment-resistant depression

Researchers uncover new insights into developing rapid-acting antidepressant for treatment-resistant depression | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it
UT Southwestern Medical Center researchers have generated fresh insights that could aid in the development of rapid-acting antidepressants for treatment-resistant depression.
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Low cortisol levels may increase risk of depression in bipolar disorder

Low cortisol levels may increase risk of depression in bipolar disorder | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it
Depression is almost twice as common, and poor quality of life almost five times as common, in people with bipolar disorder who have elevated or low levels of the stress hormone cortisol in the blood.
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Modeling how neurons work together

Modeling how neurons work together | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it
A newly-developed, highly accurate representation of the way in which neurons behave when performing movements such as reaching could not only enhance understanding of the complex dynamics at work in the brain, but aid in the development of robotic...
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Self-repairing mechanism can help to preserve brain function in neurodegenerative diseases

Self-repairing mechanism can help to preserve brain function in neurodegenerative diseases | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it
New research, led by scientists at the University of Southampton, has found that neurogenesis, the self-repairing mechanism of the adult brain, can help to preserve brain function in neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Prion or...
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Study finds difference in way bipolar disorder affects brains of children versus adults

Study finds difference in way bipolar disorder affects brains of children versus adults | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it
A new study from Bradley Hospital has found that bipolar children have greater activation in the right amygdala – a brain region very important for emotional reaction – than bipolar adults when viewing emotional faces.
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Emotional Intelligence: Going On An Empathy Adventure - Susan Stillman and Edwin Rutsch

Emotional Intelligence: Going On An Empathy Adventure - Susan Stillman and Edwin Rutsch | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it

Susan Stillman is Director of Education at Six Seconds, The Emotional Intelligence Network, Institute for Social Innovation. Through the Six Seconds website, she is hosting the Empathy Adventure over a six weeks period. 

Susan writes, "Empathy is one of the vital competencies of the 21st century. Empathy is related to collaboration, building trust, problem solving, health, and peaceful resolution of conflict. It is an essential component of leadership and critical to success in business and education. Empathy and compassion may even be key to the survival of the human race.


Via Edwin Rutsch
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Hearing protein required to convert sound into brain signals

Hearing protein required to convert sound into brain signals | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it
A specific protein found in the bridge-like structures that make up part of the auditory machinery of the inner ear is essential for hearing.
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Role reversal: Linking a reproductive pathway to obesity

Role reversal: Linking a reproductive pathway to obesity | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it
People and mice with mutations in a specific signaling pathway, known as kisspeptin, suffer reproductive effects such as delayed puberty and infertility.
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Boost for dopamine packaging protects brain in Parkinson's model

Boost for dopamine packaging protects brain in Parkinson's model | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it
Researchers from Emory's Rollins School of Public Health discovered that an increase in the protein that helps store dopamine, a critical brain chemical, led to enhanced dopamine neurotransmission and protection from a Parkinson's disease-related...
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Lost sense of smell often invisible, untreatable problem

Lost sense of smell often invisible, untreatable problem | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it
Mimi Koberlein woke up one morning unable to smell the bacon her husband was frying for breakfast. Confused, she ran to the shower, grabbed her shampoo and inhaled deeply. Nothing.
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TLX gene stimulates growth of new brain cells in adults, leading to faster learning in the animal model

TLX gene stimulates growth of new brain cells in adults, leading to faster learning in the animal model | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it

Over-expressing a specific gene could prompt growth in adults of new neurons in the hippocampus, where learning and memory are regulated, City of Hope researchers have found.


The study, which used an animal model, found that over-expression of the TLX gene resulted in smart, faster learners that retained information better and longer.


Understanding the link between this gene and the growth of new neurons — or neurogenesis — is an important step in developing therapies to address impaired learning and memory associated with neurodegenerative diseases and aging.


The new research was published June 9 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.


“Memory loss is a major health problem, both in diseases like Alzheimer’s, but also just associated with aging,”said Yanhong Shi, Ph.D., lead author of the study and a neurosciences professor at City of Hope.


“In our study, we manipulated the expression of this receptor by introducing an additional copy of the gene — which obviously we cannot do outside the laboratory setting. The next step is to find the drug that can target this same gene.”


Researchers found that over-expression of the gene was actually associated with a physically larger brain, as well as the ability to learn a task quickly. Furthermore, over-expression of the gene was linked with the ability to remember, over a longer period of time, what had been learned.


The discovery creates a new potential strategy for improving cognitive performance in elderly patients and those who have a neurological disease or brain injury.


The bulk of the brain’s development happens before birth, and there are periods — largely in childhood and young adulthood — when the brain experiences bursts of new growth. In the past couple of decades, however, scientists have found evidence of neurogenesis in later adulthood — occurring mostly in the hippocampus, the region of the brain associated with learning and memory.


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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Federal Brain Initiative Becoming Major Focus For Texas Scientific Community

Federal Brain Initiative Becoming Major Focus For Texas Scientific Community | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it
Read About How the Federal Brain Initiative is Becoming a Major Focus For the Texas Scientific Community.
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Rescue of Alzheimer's memory deficit achieved by reducing 'excessive inhibition'

Rescue of Alzheimer's memory deficit achieved by reducing 'excessive inhibition' | Social Neuroscience Advances | Scoop.it
A new drug target to fight Alzheimer's disease has been discovered by a research team led by Gong Chen, a Professor of Biology and the Verne M. Willaman Chair in Life Sciences at Penn State University.
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