Digital Trends | December 22, 2017

With CRISPR, geneticists have a powerful new weapon in the battle against ALS

For many people today, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, aka ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease, is most commonly linked with both the fundraising Ice Bucket Challenge and one its most famous patients, the physicist Stephen Hawking. However, it could soon have a brand-new distinction — the next disease to be treatable using CRISPR-Cas9 gene-editing technology. In work carried out by researchers at University […]

Berkeley News | December 20th, 2017

First step toward CRISPR cure of Lou Gehrig’s disease

University of California, Berkeley scientists have for the first time used CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing to disable a defective gene that causes amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig’s disease, in mice, extending their lifespan by 25 percent. The therapy delayed the onset of the muscle wasting that characterizes the disease, which results in progressive weakness and […]

The Atlantic | December 15th, 2017

Even Small Amounts of Alcohol Impair Memory

“I can’t even remember what happened that night” is a common joke/cry for help among people who recently drank to the point of blacking out. But there’s also evidence that drinking even a little bit can seriously impair learning and memory. Sleep, especially the REM phase when dreams occur, is when memories get cemented into […]

Science | December 14th, 2017

Out-of-sync brain waves may explain why we get forgetful as we age

Our brains don’t rest when we sleep. Electrical waves ripple through our noggins as our neurons talk to each other. Now, researchers have shown that when these waves don’t interact properly, we can lose our long-term memory. The work may help explain why older adults are so forgetful, and it could lead to new therapies […]

CBS | December 14th, 2017

How sleep impacts your memory

Research reveals that as we age, brain waves become unsynchronized. Because of that, the brain fails to keep new memories while we sleep. The study also points to a new treatment for boosting brain power among the elderly. Matthew Walker, who co-authored the study and released a new book called “Why We Sleep: Unlocking The […]

Berkeley News | December 14th, 2017

Offbeat brain rhythms during sleep make older adults forget

Like swinging a tennis racket during a ball toss to serve an ace, slow and speedy brainwaves during deep sleep must sync up at exactly the right moment to hit the save button on new memories, according to new UC Berkeley research. While these brain rhythms, occurring hundreds of times a night, move in perfect […]

Alzforum | December 14th, 2017

Aβ, Tau Absolved of Causing Mild Cognitive Impairment in Parkinson’s

Why do only some people with Parkinson’s disease decline cognitively? Scientists have proposed various theories, including that coincident Alzheimer’s pathology is to blame. Researchers led by Joseph Winer and William Jagust at the University of California, Berkeley, tested this by measuring amyloid and tau levels in vivo with PET. In the December 11 JAMA Neurology, […]

Phys.Org | December 12th, 2017

Beta of Neurodata Without Borders software now available

Neuroscientists can now explore a beta version of the new Neurodata Without Borders: Neurophysiology (NWB:N 2.0) software and offer input to developers before it is fully released next year. The 2.0 software version was developed by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s (Berkeley Lab’s) Oliver Ruebel and Andrew Tritt, in close collaboration with Kristofer Bouchard (Berkeley Lab), […]

Berkeley Neuroscience News | December 5th, 2017

PhD Program alum Allyson Mackey studies how the brain changes during development and learning

Allyson Mackey wants to understand how the brain changes during development and learning, a question that has interested her since she was babysitting and working in a toy store in her hometown of Denver, Colorado. As an undergraduate at Stanford University, Mackey took on a neuroimaging project and was hooked. In 2007 she joined the […]