Yearly Archives: 2018

Biologists discover an unusual hallmark of aging in neurons

Source: [Anne Trafton | MIT News Office, November 27, 2018] Snippets of RNA that accumulate in brain cells could interfere with normal function. As we age, neurons in our brains can become damaged by free radicals. MIT biologists have now discovered that this type of damage, known as oxidative stress, […]

Intelligent robots could prove to be a boon for autism therapies

Source: [by Rosalind Picard, Ognjen Rudovic | Spectrum, Opinion, November 13, 2018] In science-fiction movies such as “Star Wars” and “WALL-E,” futuristic robots engage in smooth social interaction and even fall in love. These Hollywood depictions remain a fantasy, but a growing number of robots with limited skills, from Roomba vacuum […]

Dopamine primes the brain for enhanced vigilance

Source: [Anne Trafton | MIT News Office, November 7, 2018] Neuroscientists discover a circuit that helps redirect attention to focus on potential threats. Imagine a herd of deer grazing in the forest. Suddenly, a twig snaps nearby, and they look up from the grass. The thought of food is forgotten, […]

Monitoring electromagnetic signals in the brain with MRI

Source: [Anne Trafton | MIT News Office, October 22, 2018] Technique could be used to detect light or electrical fields in living tissue. Researchers commonly study brain function by monitoring two types of electromagnetism — electric fields and light. However, most methods for measuring these phenomena in the brain are very […]

Mutant flies reveal key gene interactions within autism deletion

Source: [Spectrum, Alla Katsnelson | 20 August, 2018] The absence of several interacting genes underlies the developmental problems seen in people missing a segment of chromosome 16, a new study in fruit flies suggests1. People lacking this segment, 16p11.2, have varied features, including intellectual disability, an enlarged brain, seizures, obesity and autism. In the […]