Neuro

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First whole-brain map shows key to forming memories

First whole-brain map shows key to forming memories
A team of neuroscientists at the University of Pennsylvania has constructed the first whole-brain map of electrical connectivity in the brain based on data from nearly 300 neurosurgical patients with electrodes implanted directly on the brain. The researchers found that low-frequency rhythms of brain activity, when brain waves move up and down slowly, primarily drive communication between the frontal, temporal and medial temporal lobes, key brain regions that engage during memory processing.
23rd November 2017

Brain's ability to decode pitch improves cochlear implants

Brain's ability to decode pitch improves cochlear implants
For decades, scientists have debated how humans perceive pitch, and how the ear and the brain transmit pitch information in a sound. There are two prevalent theories: place and time. The “time code” theory argues that pitch is a matter of auditory nerve fibre firing rate, while the 'place code' theory focuses on where in the inner ear a sound activates. Now a study bolsters support for the place code. These findings, published in the Journal of Neuroscience, could inform further development of the cochlear implant.
22nd November 2017

Brain stimulation can change how much we enjoy music

Brain stimulation can change how much we enjoy music
Enjoyment of music is considered a subjective experience; what one person finds gratifying, another may find irritating. Music theorists have long emphasised that although musical taste is relative, our enjoyment of music, be it classical or heavy metal, arises, among other aspects, from structural features of music, such as chord or rhythm patterns that generate anticipation and expectancy.
21st November 2017


Flexibility is at the heart of human intelligence

Flexibility is at the heart of human intelligence
  Centuries of study have yielded many theories about how the brain gives rise to human intelligence. Some neuroscientists think intelligence springs from a single region or neural network. Others argue that metabolism or the efficiency with which brain cells make use of essential resources are key.
21st November 2017

Hibernating squirrels inspire alternative stroke treatments

Hibernating squirrels inspire alternative stroke treatments
In the fight against brain damage caused by stroke, researchers have turned to an unlikely source of inspiration: hibernating ground squirrels. While the animals' brains experience dramatically reduced blood flow during hibernation, just like human patients after a certain type of stroke, the squirrels emerge from their extended naps suffering no ill effects.
20th November 2017

Ultrafast light pulses can trigger neuron activity

Ultrafast light pulses can trigger neuron activity
Specially tailored, ultrafast pulses of light can trigger neurons to fire and could one day help patients with light-sensitive circadian or mood problems, according to a new study in mice at the University of Illinois. Chemists have used such carefully crafted light beams, called coherent control, to regulate chemical reactions, but this study is the first demonstration of using them to control function in a living cell.
20th November 2017

Take an immersive 3D voyage through the brain

Take an immersive 3D voyage through the brain
An immersive VR experience now offers a unique way to visualise and interact with large volumes of 3D anatomical brain data. The system, developed by researchers from the Wyss Center for Bio and Neuroengineering and the University of Geneva, has applications in neurotechnology development, research and surgeon training. A poster describing the system will be presented on Wednesday 15 November at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience 2017, in Washington DC.
17th November 2017

Silicon probes enable recording of brain activity

Silicon probes enable recording of brain activity
A team involving UCL scientists has developed a new device that could revolutionise our understanding of the brain by allowing researchers to map the activity of complex neural networks that control behaviour and decision making, in a way never before possible. The Neuropixels probes are described in a paper published in Nature. Neuropixels - tiny silicon probes thinner than a human hair – can simultaneously record the activity of hundreds of neurons across multiple different brain regions in mice and rats.
17th November 2017

Tiny neural probe records multiple brain regions at the same time

Tiny neural probe records multiple brain regions at the same time
Imec has designed and fabricated a breakthrough neural probe for the parallel recording of hundreds of neural signals. The Neuropixels probe was developed for an international consortium consisting of Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI), the Allen Institute for Brain Science, the Gatsby Charitable Foundation and Wellcome, with funding of $5.5 million.
16th November 2017

Brain implant found to improve memory recall

Brain implant found to improve memory recall
A team of researchers with the University of Southern California and the Wake Forest School of Medicine has conducted experiments involving implanting electrodes into the brains of human volunteers to see if doing so might improve memory recall. The group gave a presentation at this year's Society for Neuroscience meeting recently outlining the study and what they found.
15th November 2017


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