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Looking behind a rare brain disease for clues to treat more common mental disorders: Researchers use genetic manipulation techniques to highlight how the function of a protein can lead to neurodevelopmental delays

Researchers have clarified, for the first time, the mechanism behind a very rare brain disorder called MICPCH (microcephaly, disproportionate pontine and cerebellar hypoplasia) syndrome in animal models. Information gleaned from this study could also inform research into other, more common neurological diseases such as mental retardation, epilepsy, and autism. MICPCH has only affected a total […]

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Uncovering the evolution of the brain: Scientists compare the development of brain cells between humans and nonhuman primates in a novel way

What makes us human, and where does this mysterious property of “humanness” come from? Humans are genetically similar to chimpanzees and bonobos, yet there exist obvious behavioral and cognitive differences. Now, researchers from the Salk Institute, in collaboration with researchers from the anthropology department at UC San Diego, have developed a strategy to more easily […]

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Analysis examines migraine’s link to higher stroke risk

Migraine with aura was associated with an increased risk of ischemic stroke in the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities study, but a recent post-hoc analysis published in Headache reveals unexpected results suggesting that onset of such migraines before age 50 years is not associated with such risk. Later onset of migraine with aura was linked with […]

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How does the brain learn by talking to itself?

Human beings, like other animals, possess an enormous learning capacity that allows for the apprehension of new sensory information to master new skills or to adapt to an ever-changing environment. However, many of the mechanisms that enable us to learn remain poorly understood. One of the greatest challenges of systems neuroscience is to explain how […]

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Rerouting nerves during amputation reduces phantom limb pain before it starts: Researchers find life-altering benefits to surgery developed for advanced prosthetics

Doctors at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center and College of Medicine are pioneering the use of primary targeted muscle reinnervation (TMR) to prevent or reduce debilitating phantom limb and stump pain in amputees. Losing a limb due to trauma, cancer, or poor circulation can result in phantom limb and stump pain in upwards […]

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MRI technique shows unique signatures of concussion in rugby players

Using MRI to study the brains of young female athletes has helped researchers develop an objective way to monitor a concussion injury. By using a technique that combines both structural and functional MRI information, Western University researchers were able to identify three unique signatures — one that shows acute brain changes after an athlete has […]

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Breathing through the nose aids memory storage

The way we breathe may affect how well our memories are consolidated (i.e. reinforced and stabilised). If we breathe through the nose rather than the mouth after trying to learn a set of smells, we remember them better, researchers at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden report in The Journal of Neuroscience. Research into how breathing affects […]

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Modifiable dementia risk factor in older adults identified

For older adults, it may seem as though the die is already cast regarding their odds of developing dementia, but new research from the University of Pittsburgh has identified a dementia risk factor among older adults that should be modifiable even well into old age. The study, which draws on data collected from following hundreds […]

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Abnormal vision in childhood can affect brain functions

A research team has discovered that abnormal vision in childhood can affect the development of higher-level brain areas responsible for things such as attention. The researchers from the University of Waterloo, University of British Columbia, and the University of Auckland uncovered differences in how the brain processes visual information in patients with various types of […]

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Making the right connections

Researchers at VIB and KU Leuven have uncovered a new molecular interaction that governs the formation of specific functional connections between two types of neurons. It gives an important clue as to how unique interactions give shape to precisely organized neuronal networks in the brain. Pyramidal neurons are named after their cell body, which is […]