How the brain sorts between old and new fears

New research on how mice brains handle fear have implications for PTSD and memory disorders that make discerning past and present threats harder.

James Devitt-NYU • futurity
Oct. 12, 2020 ~6 min

Tags: memory brains fear emotions health-and-medicine post-traumatic-stress-disorder-ptsd

2 brain networks team up for long-term memory

A new study in mice reveals more information about how long-term memory works. Researchers also found how they can manipulate the process.

Katherine Gombay-McGill • futurity
Oct. 8, 2020 ~5 min

Tags: alzheimers-disease memory neurons brains hippocampus science-and-technology

Neuroscientists discover a molecular mechanism that allows memories to form

Modifications to chromosomes in “engram” neurons control the encoding and retrieval of memories.

Anne Trafton | MIT News Office • mit
Oct. 5, 2020 ~7 min

Tags: dna genetics neuroscience memory research school-of-science brain-and-cognitive-sciences picower-institute

As information flows through brain’s heirarchy, higher regions use higher-frequency waves

Study also finds specific frequency bands of brain waves associated with encoding, or inhibiting encoding, of sensory information across the cortex.

David Orenstein | Picower Institute for Learning and Memory • mit
Sept. 10, 2020 ~6 min

Tags: neuroscience memory research school-of-science brain-and-cognitive-sciences picower-institute

How to read coronavirus news and learn what you actually need to know about staying safe in the pandemic

Journalists use real people's stories to 'humanize' the news. But these tales – whether harrowing or heartwarming – can be misleading about the pandemic's greatest threats.

Thomas J. Hrach, Associate Professor, Department of Journalism and Strategic Media, University of Memphis • conversation
Sept. 2, 2020 ~7 min

Tags: coronavirus media cognition memory pandemic journalism news media-literacy human-brain media-ethics media-studies

Does forgetting a name or word mean that I have dementia?

September is Alzheimer's Awareness Month and therefore a good time to talk about dementia. Alzheimer's is the most common dementia, but there are others to be aware of, a gerontologist explains.

Laurie Archbald-Pannone, Associate Professor Medicine, Geriatrics, University of Virginia • conversation
Sept. 1, 2020 ~9 min

Tags:  alzheimers-disease  depression  dementia  anxiety  aging  delirium  memory-loss

Trauma may increase cognitive decline with age

People who experienced trauma faced greater cognitive decline as they aged as compared to people who didn't face trauma, a new study shows.

Lawrence Goodman-Brandeis • futurity
Aug. 21, 2020 ~5 min

Tags: cognition memory aging trauma brains health-and-medicine

Reversible ‘stitches’ give self-healing polymers new powers

New 3D-printable synthetic polymers have morphing powers and can self-heal within seconds. They could be useful for more realistic prosthetics.

Vandana Suresh-Texas A&M • futurity
Aug. 21, 2020 ~7 min

Tags: materials-science 3d-printing polymers science-and-technology prostheses shape-memory-polymers

Study suggests animals think probabilistically to distinguish contexts

New statistical model may help scientists understand how animals infer whether surroundings are novel or haven’t changed enough to be a new context.

David Orenstein | Picower Institute for Learning and Memory • mit
Aug. 12, 2020 ~6 min

Tags: biology memory research behavior school-of-science brain-and-cognitive-sciences center-for-brains-minds-and-machines picower-institute

Worse memory with age? It may just be ‘different’

Rather than having "worse" memories as we age, it may just be that the way memory works changes over time, researchers report.

Brandie Jefferson-WUSTL • futurity
Aug. 12, 2020 ~7 min

Tags: memory aging brains older-adults health-and-medicine

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