Shutting down a brain receptor in mice — a receptor that also exists in humans — can block pathological rage, a new study says. We didn't realize that mice could experience pathological rage. But stopping it, and the impulsive violence that could result, would be a way to treat the types of aggression that are common in some neurological and psychological disorders in people.
Good news in the battle for the brain: Researchers in Sweden and Switzerland have found that toxic prions--diseased variants of naturally occurring neural proteins--can be both detected and treated with a novel kind of self-illuminating polymer. In tests, the researchers have shown that their molecules can render prions harmless, paving the way for treatments for degenerative and potentially fatal nervous system diseases, including Alzheimer’s.
For the first time, Parkinson’s researchers have made human brain cells derived from the skin cells of patients who carry a mutated gene related to Parkinson’s disease. This means researchers can now track exactly how this mutation, in a gene called parkin, causes the disease in about 10 percent of Parkinson’s patients.
An updated version of a neurochip can monitor brain cells' communications at the clearest resolution yet, according to scientists in Canada. It's cellular-scale mind-reading -- or mind-listening, to be more precise.
The complexity of the brain makes it one of the most fascinating and sophisticated pieces of biology that we know of. But when things start to go sideways up there, modern medicine is often calls for treatments like surgery or shock stimulation, practices that can result in even more damage to fragile brain tissues. But a new method of noninvasive brain stimulation could diagnose and treat an array of neurological ailments using nothing but pulses of harmless ultrasound.
Meet PopSci's annual Brilliant 10--a selection of the brightest young researchers in the country. They're helping to keep us healthy, prevent disasters, and make green energy cheaper than coal. Lucky for us, our future is in their capable hands
We have a credo around here: The future will be better. It may sound optimistic in light of our wheezing environment and limping economy, but then you haven't met the Brilliant 10, PopSci's annual selection of the nation's most promising young researchers.