In one of the first efforts of its kind, UCLA researchers have taken mammalian genome maps, including human maps, one step further by showing not just the order in which genes fall in the genome but which genes actually interact. The findings, published in the August issue of the journal Genome Research, will help researchers better understand which genes work together and shed light on how they collaborate to help cells thrive or die.
Tag Archives | Neuroscience
Scientists from the Institute of Psychiatry (IoP) at King’s College London have developed a pioneering new method of diagnosing autism in adults. For the first time, a quick brain scan that takes just 15 minutes can identify adults with autism with over 90 per cent accuracy. The method could lead to the screening for autism spectrum disorders in children in the future. The paper, ‘Describing the brain in autism in five dimensions – MRI-assisted diagnosis using a multi-parameter classification approach,’ is published in the Journal of Neuroscience today.
How did we evolve the most loving brain on the planet? Humans are the most sociable species on earth – for better and for worse. On the one hand, we have the greatest capacities for empathy, communication, friendship, romance, complex social structures, and altruism. On the other, we have the greatest capacities for shaming, emotional cruelty, sadism, envy, jealousy, discrimination and other forms of dehumanization, and wholesale slaughter of our fellow humans.
Where you grow up can have a big impact on the food you eat, the clothes you wear, and even how your brain works. In a report in a special section on Culture and Psychology in Perspectives on Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, psychological scientists Denise C. Park from the University of Texas at Dallas and Chih-Mao Huang from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign discuss ways in which brain structure and function may be influenced by culture.
A specific area in our brains is responsible for processing information about human and animal faces, both how we recognize them and how we interpret facial expressions. Now, Tel Aviv University researcher Dr. Galit Yovel is exploring what makes this highly specialized part of the brain unique – a first step to finding practical applications for that information. Her most recent research on the brain’s face-processing mechanisms was published in the Journal of Neuroscience and Human Brain Mapping.
The neurological responses caused by observing somebody else playing a game have been uncovered. Researchers writing in the open access journal BMC Neuroscience found differing responses for neutral observers compared to those who wished the player to fail and those who wanted to see the player succeed. Check the end of this report for a link to download this open access article.
MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) Picower Institute for Learning and Memory researchers dug deeply into one of the developing brain’s signaling pathways and uncovered new details on how a key gene is implicated in psychiatric diseases such as schizophrenia and bipolar disease. The knowledge could lead to better drug targets for these disorders. The results will be published in the journal Neuron.
How much change in the brain makes a difference in the mind?
That is the issue raised by a very interesting comment regarding my previous post, The Brain in a Bucket. So I have taken the liberty of posting the comment here (hoping that’s OK in blog etiquette; still learning as I go), and then responding.