Flies the key to studying the causes of dementia

A research team has studied two structurally-similar proteins in the adult brain and have found that they play distinct roles in the development of dementia.

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Brain fights West Nile Virus in unexpected way

A biochemical self-destruct trigger found in many types of cells takes on a different role in brain cells infected with West Nile virus. In a turnabout, it guards the lives of these cells and calls up the body’s defenses. Neurons might be protected by this otherwise self-demise mechanism because they are non-renewable and too important to kill off.

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Newly discovered brain network offers clues to social cognition

By studying rhesus monkeys, researchers have identified a brain network dedicated to processing social interactions — a discovery that offers tantalizing clues to the origins of our ability to understand what other people are thinking.

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Region in brain found to be associated with fear of uncertain future

People who struggle to cope with uncertainty or the ambiguity of potential future threats may have an unusually large striatum, an area of the brain already associated with general anxiety disorder, according to research.

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How the injured brain tells the body it’s hurt

Researchers say they have identified a new way that cells in the brain alert the rest of the body to recruit immune cells when the brain is injured. The work was completed in mouse models that mimic infection, stroke or trauma in humans.

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Exposure to BPA potentially induces permanent reprogramming of painted turtles’ brains

BPA is a chemical that is used in a variety of consumer products, such as food storage containers and water bottles. In previous studies, researchers determined that BPA can disrupt sexual function and behavior in painted turtles. Now, the team has identified the genetic pathways that are altered as a result of BPA exposure during early development.

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Blind people have brain map for ‘visual’ observations too

Is what you’re looking at an object, a face, or a tree? When processing visual input, our brain uses different areas to recognize faces, body parts, scenes, and objects. Scientists have now shown that people who were born blind use a ‘brain map’ with a very similar layout to distinguish between these same categories.

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Computer game could help children choose healthy food

A simple brain-training game could help children choose healthy snacks instead of chocolate and sweets, according to a new study.

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