Keyword: neurology

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Perception research

Why do we see colors the way we do?

Dr. Wolf M. Harmening from University Eye Hospital Bonn, together with American colleagues, studied color vision by probing individual sensory cells – photoreceptors – in the human eye. The results reveal that proximity effects play a key role in how we perceive colors.

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Neurological diseases

No health without brain health

A largely aged population is already a reality in some countries, and this will become a worldwide problem by 2047, when the number of the Earth’s old people is likely to surpass the number of young people.

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Artificial nerve response

Computer model simulates sense of touch from the entire hand

Neuroscientists from the University of Chicago have developed a computer model that can simulate the response of nerves in the hand to any pattern of touch stimulation on the skin. The tool reconstructs the response of more than 12,500 nerve fibers with millisecond precision, taking into account the mechanics of the skin as it presses up against and moves across objects.

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Neuropathology

Detecting Alzheimer's disease before symptoms emerge

Long before symptoms of Alzheimer's disease become apparent to patients and their families, biological changes are occurring within the brain. Amyloid plaques, which are clusters of protein fragments, along with tangles of protein known as tau, form in the brain and grow in number, eventually getting in the way of the brain's ability to function. These biological changes can be detected early in…

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Neurology

New-found brain pathway has implications for schizophrenia treatment

Neuroscientists at Tufts University School of Medicine have discovered a new signaling pathway that directly connects two major receptors in the brain associated with learning and memory – the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) and the alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (a7nAChR) – which has significance for current efforts to develop drugs to treat schizophrenia.

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Neural activity

Movie research results: Our brains are bad at multitasking

The brain works most efficiently when it can focus on a single task for a longer period of time. Previous research shows that multitasking, which means performing several tasks at the same time, reduces productivity by as much as 40%. Now a group of researchers specialising in brain imaging has found that changing tasks too frequently interferes with brain activity. This may explain why the end…

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Blood flow control

"Switch" in brain’s capillary network monitors activity

All it takes is the flip of a protein “switch” within the tiny wire-like capillaries of the brain to increase the blood flow that ensures optimal brain function. New research has uncovered that capillaries have the capacity to both sense brain activity and generate an electrical vasodilatory signal to evoke blood flow and direct nutrients to nourish hard-working neurons.

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Lab Study

A protein called PERK - Treating progressive supranuclear palsy

The brain disease “progressive supranuclear palsy” (PSP) is currently incurable and its symptoms can only be eased to a very limited degree. PSP impairs eye movements, locomotion, balance control, and speech. Scientists at the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE) and the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have now discovered a molecular mechanism that may help in the search…

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Stress Research

Chronic stress neurons discovered

A novel population of neurons that are only activated following chronic stress is identified. Today, stress is part of everyday life. However, when stress is chronic it can lead to distressing illnesses such as depression and anxiety disorders. In their latest study, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry in Munich have identified a population of neurons in the hypothalamus that…

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