Posts Tagged ‘therapy’

Matt Wall

Brain Scans and Bold Plans: Our Interview with Matt Wall

Sometimes, a conversation takes you to places you never would’ve expected. Matt Wall and I struck up a chat about brain-scanning technology early this year, and he mentioned that he’d like to do an interview for The Connectome. Since he’s got 5+ years of published brain research under his belt, I jumped at the chance. […]

Guiding Neuron Growth

Our neurons’ growth can be shaped by tiny cues from spinning microparticles in the fluids that surround them, a new study reports. The branching and growth of neurons is based on several kinds of guides, including their chemical environment, their location within the brain, and the dense network of glial cells that support and protect them. But as […]

Wakefulness Cells

Certain groups of neurons determine whether light keeps us awake or not, says a new study. In the hypothalamus – a brain structure responsible for regulating hormone levels – specific kinds of neurons release a hormone called hypocretin (also known as hcrt or orexin). Hypocretin lets light-sensitive cells in other parts of the brain – such […]

Take Your Time

Stimulating a certain brain region makes people take less time to consider their decisions, a new study reports. One particular area of the frontal lobe – the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) – is involved in helping us take conscious control over our decision-making process. While the mPFC is stuck on a problem, an ancient brain structure called […]

Working Off Worry

Want to get rid of gloomy thoughts? Try working some physical activity into your daily routine, says a new study. For people who struggle with depression and anxiety, the research shows, exercise can be just as effective as antidepressant medication. It often prevents symptoms from getting worse – and in some cases, it even helps cure the problem. […]

Mind Control

A comfy new “brain cap” will soon allow users to remotely control robots with their thoughts. By “comfy” I mean “noninvasive” – instead of sticky electrode patches or needles, the cap uses sensors embedded in its fabric to detect electrical signals along the scalp. Just slip it on, and you can start surfing the internet […]

Memory Lost & Found

New research has unlocked some reasons why memories weaken as we age – and more intriguingly, it suggests that the process can be reversed. According to a study published in the journal Nature, a large part of this decline is due to the chemical environment of neurons in the prefrontal cortex (PFC), an area of the frontal […]

Narrative Medicine

Storytelling is more than just entertainment – new research shows that creating narratives can lift our moods, and even fight the symptoms of diseases like Alzheimer’s. A group of neuropsychiatric researchers at the University of Missouri’s Sinclair School of Nursing tested a storytelling program called TimeSlips on nursing home patients suffering from senile dementia, the […]

Visual Synesthesia

Have you ever wondered what it subjectively feels like to read braille? What about echolocating? Scientists are learning that both these senses have a lot more in common with sight – both physiologically and in terms of subjective perception – than you might expect. Let’s start with braille. PET studies since at least the late ’90s have […]

Rewarding Intuition

New research suggests that fast-paced feedback loops can help us improve our intuitive accuracy about logical reasoning. A major proponent of intuition-training research is psychologist Philip J. Kellman, who works at the University of California, Los Angeles. Much like math savant Daniel Tammet, Kellman says even the most rigorous problem-solving ultimately depends on our personal perceptions […]

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