“As we age, it’s harder to have a get-up-and-go attitude toward things,” says study author Ann Graybiel. Credit: Christine Daniloff, MIT Research on mice suggests aging affects a brain circuit critical for learning to make some types of decisions. As people age, they often lose their motivation to learn new […]

Similar to the cortex of mammals, the nerve cells in certain areas of the brain of birds are organized in vertical layers and horizontal columns. Credit: RUB, Biopsychlogy Some birds can perform amazing cognitive feats – even though their forebrains seem to just consist of lumps of grey cells, while […]

“Area 32” balances activity from cognitive and emotional brain areas in primates. Navigating through life requires balancing emotion and reason, a feat accomplished by the brain region “area 32” of the anterior cingulate cortex. The area maintains emotional equilibrium by relaying information between cognitive and emotional brain regions, according to […]

Brain cells called astrocytes appear in green, and purple represents the leakage of the blood-brain barrier. Together they show that leakage occurs around areas where astrocytes have been ablated. Now, in a study with potential impacts on a variety of neurological diseases, Fralin Biomedical Research Institute scientists have provided the […]

Time-sensitive neurons fatigue and skew our perception of time. On some days, time flies by, while on others it seems to drag on. A new study from JNeurosci reveals why: time-sensitive neurons get worn out and skew our perceptions of time. Neurons in the supramarginal gyrus (SMG) fire in response to a […]

Mania Graphic. Credit: Diogo Matias Identifying the brain circuits affected in these “lesional” cases of mania, in addition to contributing to understanding the underlying mechanisms, could help find more effective treatments for bipolar disorder. A team of scientists from Portugal and the USA have now announced significant progress in the […]

“Dormio takes dream research to a new level, interacting directly with an individual’s dreaming brain and manipulating the actual content of their dreams,” says Robert Stickgold, director of the Center for Sleep and Cognition at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Credit: Helen Gao Device not only helps record dream reports, […]

MIT engineers have designed a “brain-on-a-chip,” smaller than a piece of confetti, that is made from tens of thousands of artificial brain synapses known as memristors — silicon-based components that mimic the information-transmitting synapses in the human brain. The researchers borrowed from principles of metallurgy to fabricate each memristor from alloys […]

Animation Rife with obstacles and occlusions, terrestrial environments potentially helped give rise to planning circuits in the brain. New simulations show that living among land’s rich topography forced animals to plan rather than act based on habits Planning abilities increased survival rates, so evolution might have selected for brain circuitry […]

Animation States that resemble sleep-like cycles in simulated neural networks quell the instability that comes with uninterrupted self-learning in artificial analogs of brains. No one can say whether androids will dream of electric sheep, but they will almost certainly need periods of rest that offer benefits similar to those that […]