Berkeley News | September 14, 2014

Researchers find neural compensation in people with Alzheimer’s-related protein

The human brain is capable of a neural workaround that compensates for the buildup of beta-amyloid, a destructive protein associated with Alzheimer’s disease, according to a new study led by UC Berkeley researchers. The findings, published Sept. 14 in the journal Nature Neuroscience, could help explain how some older adults with beta-amyloid deposits in their […]

Berkeley News | September 8, 2014

Study links honesty to prefrontal region of the brain

Are humans programmed to tell the truth? Not when lying is advantageous, says a new study led by Assistant Professor Ming Hsu at UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business. The report ties honesty to a region of the brain that exerts control over automatic impulses. Hsu, who heads the Neuroeconomics Laboratory at the Haas School of […]

Berkeley News | September 5, 2014

Shining light on brain circuits to study learning, memory

UC Berkeley neuroscientists plan to use light to tweak the transmission of signals in the brain to learn more about how the mouse brain and presumably the human brain process information. Last month, the research project was awarded one of 36 new $300,000, two-year grants from the National Science Foundation in support of President Obama’s […]

Discover Magazine | August 28, 2014

How to Better Teach Kids Science? Just Ask Them

Neuroscientist Bob Knight started a kid-reviewed, kid-targeted online journal to inspire the next generation of researchers on their own terms. Kids say the darndest things when they’re reviewing a neuroscience study up for publication. That’s what Bob Knight discovered when, almost on a whim, he started a kid-reviewed online journal — and found his passion. […]

Kavli Foundation | August 14, 2014

Prominent U.S. Research Institutions Announce Collaboration Toward Sharing and Standardizing Neuroscience Data

The Allen Institute for Brain Science, California Institute of Technology, New York University School of Medicine, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) and the University of California, Berkeley (UC Berkeley) are collaborating on a project aimed at making databases about the brain more useable and accessible for neuroscientists – a step seen as critical to […]

Fabbs Foundation | July 29, 2014

Giving Computers the Wisdom of People

Bias is usually thought to cause problems, but some kinds of bias can also help us solve problems. In fact, bias is an essential part of how we understand the world around us, says cognitive psychologist Tom Griffiths of the University of California at Berkeley. Every day, we are required to draw inferences, or educated […]

Newsweek | July 24, 2014

How Your Chilli Addiction Could Be Helping You Live Longer

From the flicker of heat in pepperoncini to the incendiary burn of the Carolina Reaper, the chilli has conquered the world. These pungent pods are now the most widely grown spice crop of all. But, in recent years, the medical profession has become increasingly interested in the chemical ingredient of its trademark heat, with one […]

Berkeley Neuroscience News | July 2, 2014

Insatiable Insects: Identification of four neurons that act as feeding switches in the brain

It is possible to eat until your stomach bursts open, but most people will never come close to this horror. Feeling like your stomach might burst, for example after gorging on a large Thanksgiving feast, is the painful signal that tells you to stop eating and saves you from a worse fate. The neuronal circuits that control our eating behavior have evolved to keep us well fed, but not overfed. There are triggers that tell you to start eating, such as hunger and the availability of food, and triggers that tell you to stop, such as sensation of dangerous foods or gut distension.

But what if that system was broken? Kristin Scott’s lab at UC Berkeley has discovered a small set of neurons in the fruit fly that chronically inhibit eating. Without them, the animal will eat until it regurgitates, excretes, or explodes.

Berkeley News | June 16, 2014

Your genes affect your betting behavior

Investors and gamblers take note: your betting decisions and strategy are determined, in part, by your genes. Researchers from the University of California, Berkeley, National University of Singapore and University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) have shown that betting decisions in a simple competitive game are influenced by the specific variants of dopamine-regulating genes in a […]

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