Archive for the ‘Brain News’ Category

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The Top 5 Neuroscience Breakthroughs of 2013

If 2012 was the year neuroscience exploded into pop culture, 2013 was the year it stepped into the halls of power. The Obama administration’s $100-million BRAIN Initiative stirred up furious debate, as proponents cheered to see so much funding and press attention thrown at large-scale efforts to map the human brain, while opponents claimed that the […]

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Sexy Neuroscience IV

Every culture and subculture has its own rituals of greeting and affection – handshakes, backslaps, fist-bumps, hugs and so on – but when it comes to erotic contact, cultural differences seem to melt away into something more primal: Touch that just feels good for its own sake. In fact, a new study has confirmed that […]

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Science Fights Back With Open Access

A major paradigm shift is taking the science world by storm. Open source is taking over. For more than a century, scientists have depended on peer-reviewed journals to keep them up to date on the latest research. But as many of these journals have raised their subscription fees to bank-breaking levels, and locked life-saving research […]

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The Listeners from Below

Deep within your brain, they are listening. In still silence, they await signals from afar – dim echoes of distant calls. And when they hear what they’ve been waiting for… they will awaken. They are known as neural stem cells – and not only are they real; researchers have just made some major discoveries about […]

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Brains and Brilliance

Where in the brain, exactly, is intelligence? Is a high I.Q. just a result of a flawed test – or do high-I.Q. brains have specific, measurable differences from others? Answers await, Intrepid Reader – but first we have to make sure we’re asking the right questions. Let’s start with the big news: a study just published […]

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Lying Eyes

Despite what you may have heard, you can’t tell if a person’s lying by watching their eyes. If you’re surprised, you’re not alone – I thought that theory made a lot of sense until I read this new study. As it turns out, the eye idea just doesn’t line up with the evidence. As far […]

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Aliens in the Lab

Researchers are creating new lifeforms that are chemically unrelated to any other life on earth. In fact, for the first time ever, scientists in Japan have built an artificial synapse, from the molecules up. What?! How can this be? Read on, intrepid voyager of the unknown, and discover for yourself. The basic idea is that […]

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Sleep, Stress and Snacks

A lack of sleep makes our brains go nuts for unhealthy food, says a new study. When sleep-deprived people are shown images of junk food, fMRI scans show that their brains’ reward centers light up with far more intense anticipation than those of people who’ve slept a full night. The Fourthmeal marketing team, I assume, […]

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Skin Into Brain II

For the first time in history, scientists have reprogrammed a whole batch of skin cells into a self-organizing, functioning network of brain cells, says a new study. That’s right, y’all – Dr. Sheng Ding at UCSF is blowin’ up the stem cell research game once again – except this time, instead of just reprogramming individual […]

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Becoming Bad

The brains of psychopaths are anatomically different from healthy brains in a specific set of ways, says a new study. Areas of the brain that enable us to feel guilt and fear, and to understand other people’s emotions – particularly the anterior rostral prefrontal cortex and the temporal poles – are significantly smaller in psychopathic […]

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