BerkeleyNeuroscience Research | September 22nd, 2016

Decoding hidden mental processes

by Georgeann Sack Decision-making is an internal process that is not time locked to observable sensory inputs or behavioral outputs. This makes the neural processes underlying decision-making difficult to investigate. In their Nature Neuroscience paper, Erin Rich and Joni Wallis used a decoding approach to identify and track the neural representations of two options being […]

HWNI News | September 13th, 2016

Genes, chemicals, brain cells, and behavior: Understanding addiction at UC Berkeley & UCSF

By Sarah Hillenbrand It’s easy to think about addiction as pleasure gone off the rails. Howard Fields, Director of the Wheeler Center for the Neurobiology of Addiction at UCSF, points out that this is an oversimplification. Fields got started in addiction research by studying not pleasure, but pain. “Pain and pleasure are part of the […]

Berkeley News | September 8th, 2016

Can some types of fat protect us from brain disease?

An intriguing finding in nematode worms suggests that having a little bit of extra fat may help reduce the risk of developing some neurodegenerative diseases, such as Huntington’s, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases. What these illnesses have in common is that they’re caused by abnormal proteins that accummulate in or between brain cells to form plaques, […]

Berkeley News | August 29th, 2016

UC Berkeley launches Center for Human-Compatible Artificial Intelligence

UC Berkeley artificial intelligence (AI) expert Stuart Russell will lead a new Center for Human-Compatible Artificial Intelligence, launched this week. Russell, a UC Berkeley professor of electrical engineering and computer sciences and the Smith-Zadeh Professor in Engineering, is co-author of Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach, which is considered the standard text in the field of artificial […]

PBS NewsHour | August 12th, 2016

Inside the extraordinary nose of a search-and-rescue dog

The blizzard arrived in Alpine Meadows without warning. Hours earlier, before a half moon rose over this California resort town near Lake Tahoe, an uncle and his teenage nephew had been separated from their hunting party. Authorities called veteran rescue dog handler Shay Cook, who rushed to the mountain site with her dog Rixi, never […]

Newsweek | August 5th, 2016


Wireless sensors that can be implanted in a person’s body to control robotic devices have been developed by researchers hoping to transform brain-to-computer interfaces. Scientists at the University of Berkeley, California, built the so-called “neural dust” device and tested its functionality in the muscles and peripheral nerves of rats. “I think the long-term prospects for […]

The Washington Post | August 4th, 2016

Engineers implanted tiny sensors in rats’ nerves and muscles. Are humans next?

Sensors the size of a grain of sand could one day explain what’s happening in your body from the inside out. Engineers at the University of California, Berkeley, implanted wireless sensors measuring just one millimeter cubed  in the muscles and nerves of lab rats, then used ultrasound waves to extract information from them about how well […]

CNET | August 3rd, 2016

Beyond Fitbit: ‘Neural dust’ puts invisible cyborg tech deep inside you

New, tiny sensors could create superpowerful fitness trackers, move prosthetics forward and lead to treatments for conditions like epilepsy. Monitoring your heart rate and VO2 max (maximum oxygen volume) with the latest fitness tracker is nifty, but researchers are developing new, tiny tech to keep track of just about any organ, nerve or muscle in […]

Popular Science | August 3rd, 2016

Wireless ‘Neural Dust’ Could Monitor Your Brain

SAND-SIZED SENSOR IMPLANTS GIVE INSTANT FEEDBACK FROM NERVE CELLS Science fiction that features wires connecting brains to computers might now be obsolete. Wireless powered implants, each smaller than a grain of rice, could serve as “neural dust” that can one day scan and stimulate brain cells. Such research could one day help lead to next-generation […]

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