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- Lost memories might be able to be restored, suggests research into marine snail
New research indicates that lost memories can be restored, according to new research into a type of marine snail called Aplysia. The findings offer some hope for patients in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease.
- Early exposure to antidepressants affects adult anxiety, serotonin transmission
Early developmental exposure to two different antidepressants, Prozac and Lexapro, has been studied by researchers in a mouse model that mimics human third trimester medication exposure. They found that, although these serotonin-selective reuptake inhibiting antidepressants were thought to work the same way, they did not produce the same long-term changes in anxiety behavior in the adult mice. About 15 percent of women in the United States suffer from anxiety disorders and depression during their pregnancies, and many are prescribed antidepressants.
- Family criticizing your weight? You might add more pounds
Women whose loved ones are critical of their weight tend to put on even more pounds, says a new study on the way people's comments affect our health. "When we feel bad about our bodies, we often turn to loved ones -- families, friends and romantic partners -- for support and advice. How they respond can have a bigger effect than we might think," said one author.
- Personalized advertising attracts more attention and makes contents of ads easier to remember
Personalized advertisements on the Internet not only attract more attention, they also remain in our memory longer than impersonal ads. People who surf the internet and shop online leave many traces of their behavior behind. These data are increasingly being used by companies to present ads on their websites that are intended to meet people's individual interests and preferences.
- A Facebook application knows if you are having a bad day and tells your teacher
- Gene critical for proper brain development discovered
A genetic pathway has been found that accounts for the extraordinary size of the human brain. The research team has identified a gene, KATNB1, as an essential component in a genetic pathway responsible for central nervous system development in humans and other animals.
- Neuroscientists identify brain mechanisms that predict generosity in children
Developmental neuroscientists have found specific brain markers that predict generosity in children. Those neural markers appear to be linked to both social and moral evaluation processes. Although young children are natural helpers, their perspective on sharing resources tends to be selfish.
- OCD patients' brains light up to reveal how compulsive habits develop
Misfiring of the brain's control system might underpin compulsions in obsessive-compulsive disorder, according to researchers.
- Being humble: Research shows E.B. White was right in Charlotte's Web
Psychologists conducted a bottom-up exploration of what it really means to be humble. They found that people see a unique dimension of humility akin to a love of learning.
- High socioeconomic status increases discrimination, depression risk in black young adults
An investigation into factors related to disparities of depression in young adults has found that higher parental education -- which has a protective effect for white youth -- can also increase the risk of depression for black youth by increasing the discrimination they experience.
- A clear, molecular view of how human color vision evolved
Many genetic mutations in visual pigments, spread over millions of years, were required for humans to evolve from a primitive mammal with a dim, shadowy view of the world into a greater ape able to see all the colors in a rainbow. Now, after more than two decades of painstaking research, scientists have finished a detailed and complete picture of the evolution of human color vision.
- Tooth loss linked to slowing mind, body
The memory and walking speeds of adults who have lost all of their teeth decline more rapidly than in those who still have some of their own teeth, finds new research. The association between total tooth loss and memory was explained after the results of a study were fully adjusted for a wide range of factors, such as sociodemographic characteristics, existing health problems, physical health, health behaviors, such as smoking and drinking, depression, relevant biomarkers, and particularly socioeconomic status. However, after adjusting for all possible factors, people without teeth still walked slightly slower than those with teeth.
- Less than half of UK prescriptions for antipsychotics issued for main licensed conditions
Less than half of UK prescriptions for antipsychotic drugs are being issued to treat the serious mental illnesses for which they are mainly licensed, reveals research. Instead, they may often be prescribed 'off label' to older people with other conditions, such as anxiety and dementia, despite the greater risk of potentially serious side effects in this age group, the findings indicate.
- Ability to balance on one leg may reflect brain health, stroke risk
Struggling to stand on one leg for less than 20 seconds was linked to an increased risk for stroke, small blood vessel damage in the brain, and reduced cognitive function in otherwise healthy people, a study has shown. One-legged standing time may be a simple test used to measure early signs of abnormalities in the brain associated with cognitive decline, cerebral small vessel disease and stroke.
- In one aspect of vision, computers catch up to primate brain
For decades, neuroscientists have been trying to design computer networks that can mimic visual skills such as recognizing objects, which the human brain does very accurately and quickly. Until now, no computer model has been able to match the primate brain at visual object recognition during a brief glance. Now neuroscientists have found that one of the latest generation of 'deep neural networks' matches the primate brain.
- 'Deep learning' finds autism, cancer mutations in unexplored regions of genome
Scientists have built a computer model that has uncovered disease-causing mutations in large regions of the genome that previously could not be explored. Their method seeks out mutations that cause changes in 'gene splicing,' and has revealed unexpected genetic determinants of autism, colon cancer and spinal muscular atrophy.
- Scheduling sleep: Three nighttime habits to improve rest
With an increase in parties, increased food and alcohol consumption and a general disruption of normal routines, the month of December can be exhausting. Here are three tips to improve sleep habits.
- No 'bird brains'? Crows exhibit advanced relational thinking, study suggests
Crows have the brain power to solve higher-order, relational-matching tasks, and they can do so spontaneously, according to new research. That means crows join humans, apes and monkeys in exhibiting advanced relational thinking, according to the research.
- Scientists map out how childhood brain tumors relapse
The unique genetic paths that the childhood brain tumor medulloblastoma follows when the disease comes back has been mapped out, researchers report. Scientists looked at biopsies from the relapsed tumours of 29 patients. They found a range of changes that only appeared when the disease returned and were responsible for the cancer becoming more aggressive.
- Is there a better way to treat substance use in adolescents with co-occurring mental health disorders?
The majority (55-74%) of adolescents entering substance use treatment also have psychiatric disorders, such as depression, ADHD and trauma-related problems. Unfortunately, these youth face poorer treatment outcomes (e.g., relapse), and their mental health issues are often not directly addressed. Furthermore, few studies exist to guide those clinicians who would like to use integrated care to treat adolescent with co-occurring disorders. A new review proposes that the Adolescent Community Reinforcement Approach (A-CRA), which is a combination of cognitive-behavioral and family therapies, may be an ideal treatment method for this patient population.
- Fine particulate air pollution linked with increased autism risk
Women exposed to high levels of fine particulate matter specifically during pregnancy -- particularly during the third trimester -- may face up to twice the risk of having a child with autism than mothers living in areas with low particulate matter, according to a study. The greater the exposure, the greater the risk, researchers found. It was the first US-wide study exploring the link between airborne particulate matter and autism.
- Early caregiving experiences have long-term effects on social relationships, achievement
A new study has found that sensitive caregiving in the first three years of life predicts an individual's social competence and academic achievement, not only during childhood and adolescence, but into adulthood. The study used information from 243 individuals who were born into poverty, came from a range of racial/ethnic backgrounds, and had been followed from birth to age 32.
- Quality of parent-infant relationships, early childhood shyness predict teen anxiety
Social anxiety is one of the most common psychiatric disorders among children and adolescents. A new study has found that together, the quality of parent-infant relationships and early childhood shyness predict the likelihood of social anxiety in adolescence. In this longitudinal study, researchers studied 165 European-American, middle- to upper-middle-class adolescents who were recruited as infants.
- Subtle but important memory function affected by preterm birth
A study of children born prematurely has found differences in a subtle but important aspect of memory: the ability to form and retrieve memories about context. The study examined 33 8-to 10-year olds using magnetic resonance imaging to measure the volume of the hippocampi. The results suggest that the maturational state of the hippocampus at the time of birth influences the maturation of certain memory functions even at 8- to 10-years old.
- Why are UK teenagers skipping school?
Analysis of the results of a large-scale survey reveals the extent of truancy in English secondary schools and sheds light on the mental health of the country’s teens.
- How does prostate cancer form? Parkinson's Link?
The cause of prostate cancer may be linked to Parkinson’s disease through a common enzyme family called sirtuins. Finding an enzyme that regulates this process could provide excellent new prevention approaches for this common malignancy, researchers say. Sirtuin enzymes have been implicated in neurodegeneration, obesity, heart disease, and cancer.
- Consumer loyalty driven by aesthetics over functionality
Consumers' loyalty and passion for an automobile brand are driven more by appearance than practical concerns. Aesthetics that resonate on an emotional level are more responsible for brand loyalty than such factors as functionality and price, the study found.
- Certainty in our choices often a matter of time, researchers find
When faced with making choices, but lack sufficient evidence to guarantee success, our brain uses elapsed time as a proxy for task difficulty to calculate how confident we should be, a team of neuroscientists has found. Their findings help untangle the different factors that contribute to the decision-making process.
- Unpacking brain damage in ALS
Researchers gain new insight into how motor neurons in the brain die during ALS. About 5 percent of ALS patients carry an altered version of a gene called C9orf72, which in ALS patients contains hundreds of repeat sequences that otherwise are not present in normal individuals. Since the gene's discovery in 2011, however, researchers have been trying to understand its normal function as well as its role in ALS, with multiple hypotheses proposed.
- Contrasting views of kin selection assessed
Researchers have used several different ways of testing Hamilton's rule, the core mathematical formula of kin selection, as an explanation for the evolution of much altruistic behavior in animals. These vary in their realism and their ability to generate predictions. The variety of approaches, as well as different views about what constitutes an explanation, helps explain a divisive debate about the importance of kin selection in evolution. A new criterion of 'causal aptness' could help resolve disputes.
- Orphan receptor proteins deliver two knock-out punches to glioblastoma cells
Two related proteins exert a lethal double whammy effect against glioblastoma cells when activated with a small molecule. Scientists say when activated, one protein, called the short form, stops glioblastoma cells from replicating their DNA, and the other, called the long form, prevents cell division if the DNA has already been replicated.
- Watch out Internet meanies: Game could soon be over for you
Bullies and mean girls have been around forever but, with the arrival of smartphones and social media, meanness has taken on new forms and dramatically extended its reach. Digital abuse is now so widespread, and such are its dramatic effects on victims, that the American Academy of Pediatrics has issued a stern warning about the risks posed by cyberbullying to adolescents’ mental health. But 'how much do we really know about how to tackle online bullies?,' asks a new study.
- Privacy policies good for big business, not so good for consumers
Research suggests effective self regulation has yet to emerge for the majority of businesses whose privacy policies keep them from sharing consumers’ private information, but are not readable by the average consumer.
- Employees who are open about religion are happier, study suggests
Employees who openly discuss their religious beliefs at work are often happier and have higher job satisfaction than those employees who do not, according to a new study.
- Amputee makes history controlling two modular prosthetic limbs
A Colorado man made history this summer when he became the first bilateral shoulder-level amputee to wear and simultaneously control two modular prosthetic limbs. Most importantly, the patient, who lost both arms in an electrical accident 40 years ago, was able to operate the system by simply thinking about moving his limbs, performing a variety of tasks during a short training period.
- Hugs help protect against stress, infection, say researchers
Researchers tested whether hugs act as a form of social support, protecting stressed people from getting sick. They found that greater social support and more frequent hugs protected people from the increased susceptibility to infection associated with being stressed and resulted in less severe illness symptoms.
- Women are more empathetic toward their partner than men
Women may long have suspected it to be the case, but large-scale research has found women are more empathetic toward their partners than men.
- Personality outsmarts intelligence at school: Conscientiousness and openness key to learning
Recent research has found that personality is more important than intelligence when it comes to success in education and this needs to take this into account when guiding students and teachers. Furthermore these personality traits for academic success can be developed.
- Firearm violence trends in the 21st century
While the overall death rate from firearm violence has remained unchanged for more than a decade, the patterns for suicide and homicide have changed dramatically, a study on the epidemiology of gun violence from 2003 to 2012 has found.
- Bugs life: The nerve cells that make locusts ‘gang up’
A team of biologists has identified a set of nerve cells in desert locusts that bring about 'gang-like' gregarious behavior when they are forced into a crowd. The findings demonstrate the importance of individual history for understanding how brain chemicals control behaviour, which may apply more broadly to humans also.
- Severely mentally ill criminals: who goes to prison and who goes to psych institutions?
People with a severe mental disorder who commit a crime and who are incarcerated have different characteristics compared to people who are hospitalized after committing an offense, say researchers who focused on the differences of these people and their places of incarceration.
- Electronic cigarettes facilitate smoking cessation, new evidence shows
Do electronic cigarettes help smokers to quit? Yes, but… Researchers found that while nicotine containing electronic cigarettes were more effective than electronic cigarettes without nicotine (placebo) in helping smokers kick the habit, the results need to be confirmed by more studies.
- Growing shortage of stroke specialists seen in U.S.
Although stroke is the number four cause of death and a leading cause of disability in the United States, there’s an increasing shortage of neurologists who specialize in stroke care, researchers say. More than 800,000 strokes -- one every 40 seconds -- occur in the United States each year. The number of strokes is expected to grow substantially due to the growing elderly population.
- Thumbs-up for mind-controlled robotic arm
A paralyzed woman who controlled a robotic arm using just her thoughts has taken another step towards restoring her natural movements by controlling the arm with a range of complex hand movements.
- Herd mentality: Are we programmed to make bad decisions?
A natural desire to be part of the 'in crowd' could damage our ability to make the right decisions, a new study has shown. Research has shown that individuals have evolved to be overly influenced by their neighbors, rather than rely on their own instinct. As a result, groups become less responsive to changes in their natural environment.
- Kids' cartoon characters twice as likely to die as counterparts in films for adults: Content on a par with 'rampant horrors' of popular films
Principal cartoon characters are more than twice as likely to be killed off as their counterparts in films for adults released in the same year, reveals new research. On-screen death and violence can be particularly traumatic for young children, and the impact can be intense and long lasting.
- Burglars experts at navigating homes
Experienced burglars are expert at taking systematic, predictable routes around homes they are stealing from, according to new research.
- How information moves between cultures
Networks that map strength of connections between languages predict global influence of their speakers. By analyzing data on multilingual Twitter users and Wikipedia editors and on 30 years' worth of book translations in 150 countries, researchers have developed network maps that they say represent the strength of the cultural connections between speakers of different languages.
- More than half of all children in US will likely live with an unmarried mother
More than half of all American children will likely live with an unmarried mother at some point before they reach age 18, according to a new report. The absence of a biological father increases the likelihood that a child will exhibit antisocial behaviors like aggression, rule-breaking and delinquency. As a result, these children are 40 percent less likely to finish high school or attend college.
- Mild memory, thinking issues: What works, what doesn't?
For up to one in five Americans over age 65, getting older brings memory and thinking problems. It may seem like part of getting older - but officially, it’s called mild cognitive impairment or MCI. A new definitive look at the evidence about what works and what doesn’t in MCI should help doctors and the seniors they treat.
- 'Financial toxicity' can lower cancer patients' quality of life
Doctors who treat cancer are vigilant when it comes to the physical side effects of the therapies they prescribe, but financial stress from accumulating medical bills can also weigh on patients’ health — even those who have finished their treatments and are cancer-free.
- Certain parenting tactics could lead to materialistic attitudes in adulthood
A new study found that parents who use material goods as part of their parenting techniques may be setting children up for difficulties later in adulthood.
- Students attending summer learning programs returned to school in the fall with an advantage in math
Students attending voluntary, school district-led summer learning programs entered school in the fall with stronger mathematics skills than their peers who did not attend the programs, according to a new study.
- To save the lives of 5.6 million children from tobacco use, more aggressive actions must be taken, expert explains
Officials must use policy, tax and other regulatory tools to stem youth smoking and health effects of tobacco use, experts say. The 2014 Surgeon General's Report on tobacco use concluded that if more is not done to combat tobacco use, 5.6 million youth under age 18 in 2012 will die prematurely from a smoking-related illness.
- Introverts could shape extroverted co-workers' career success, study shows
Introverted employees are more likely to give low evaluations of job performance to extroverted co-workers, giving introverts a powerful role in workplaces, new research shows. Introverts consistently rated extroverted co-workers as worse performers, and were less likely to give them credit for work performed or endorse them for advancement opportunities, according to two separate studies.
- Teen contraband smokers more likely to use illicit drugs: Study
An economics professor has discovered a link between contraband cigarette use and illicit drug use among Canadian teens. The survey assessed students' past-year use of the following drugs (including some street names for each type of drug): amphetamines, cocaine, hallucinogens, heroin, MDMA and ketamine. The study also showed a significant relationship between truancy and drug use, as well as binge drinking and drug use.
- How, where the brain converts external inputs into behavioral responses
Very little is known about how and where the brain converts external inputs into behavioral responses. Now, scientists have been able to shed light on important neural circuitry involved in the prey capture behavior exhibited by young zebrafish.
- When pursuing goals, people give more weight to progress than setbacks
New Year's resolution-makers should beware of skewed perceptions. People tend to believe good behaviors are more beneficial in reaching goals than bad behaviors are in obstructing goals, according to a study.
- First real-time mri-guided brain surgery for Parkinson's in southern California
Neurosurgeons became the first in Southern California to implant a deep brain stimulator (DBS) in a patient with Parkinson’s disease using real-time 3-D magnetic resonance image (MRI) guidance.
- Meth users face substantially higher risk for getting Parkinson's disease
In addition to incurring serious dental problems, memory loss and other physical and mental issues, methamphetamine users are three times more at risk for getting Parkinson's disease than non-illicit drug users, new research shows.