Category Archives: Mind

A New Map of How We Think: Top Brain/Bottom Brain

… research reveals that the top-brain system uses information about the surrounding environment (in combination with other sorts of information, such as emotional reactions and the need for food or drink) to figure out which goals to try to achieve. It actively formulates plans, generates expectations about what should happen when a plan is executed… Read More »

NYC psychic on trial on charges of conning clients

When a heartbroken ballroom-dancing instructor who had just lost a job and a lonely Singaporean businesswoman with an unrequited workplace crush wandered into a fortune-teller’s shop, the soothsayer foresaw lucrative opportunities – for herself, prosecutors said. Conjuring past lives, divining “negative energy” and promising to banish problems through techniques such as stuffing thousands of customers’… Read More »

Scientists Turn Hunger On and Off In Brain

Recently, scientists have been coming up with more and more, er, creative ways of combatting the potentially fatal effects of obesity. Soon though, people with overeating disorders might have a single solution that stops the problem at the root. We could just turn off part of their brain. In pioneering research, a team of scientists… Read More »

Link between gluten and Alzheimer’s

Dr. Mercola writes: Alzheimer’s disease is at epidemic proportions, with 5.4 million Americans–including one in eight people aged 65 and over–living with the disease. In the next 20 years, it is projected that Alzheimer’s will affect one in four Americans, rivaling the current prevalence of obesity and diabetes. There is still no known accepted cure… Read More »

Sleep Through Your Alarm

You may think you’re doing nothing at night, but to your brain, sleep means finally having some spare time to take stock of the day’s events. Freed from the distractions of recording new experiences, a deeply sleeping brain can organize and strengthen memories, especially emotional ones. For Katherina Hauner, a neuroscientist at Northwestern University Feinberg… Read More »

Brain Scans Show Why Psychopaths Don’t Feel Your Pain

Among other traits, psychopaths feel a lack of empathy when other people are in pain, and brain scans now reveal why that is. Psychopathy is a personality disorder marked by callousness, manipulation, sensation seeking and antisocial behaviors. About 23 percent of people in prison are psychopaths, compared with about 1 percent of people in the… Read More »

Using The Power Of Brain Waves To Prevent Car And Plane Hijackings

One of the many promising developments with practical applications emerging from neuroscience is something called “brain wave biometrics.” Everyone’s brain produces a distinctive pattern of alpha-beta brain waves – something like a neural fingerprint. If we could record those brain wave patterns for a given person, we’d have a reliable way of identifying that person… Read More »

Research renaissance offers new ways out of depression

As Susan sits chatting to a nurse in a London clinic, a light tapping sound by her head signals that parts of her brain are being zapped by thousands of tiny electro-magnetic pulses from a machine plugged into the wall. The 50 year-old doctor is among growing ranks of people with so-called treatment-resistant depression, and… Read More »

Prion-like proteins drive several diseases of aging, say leading neurology researchers

Prion-like protein aggregates drive the progression of several neurodegenerative diseases. a. Amyloid-beta plaques in Alzheimers. b. Neurofibrillary tangles (tau) in Alzheimer’s. c. Lewy bodies (alpha-synuclein) in Parkinson’s. d. TDP-43 inclusions in motor neurons in ALS. Many of the brain diseases associated with aging, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, are caused by specific proteins that misfold… Read More »

Study finds poverty reduces brain power

Poverty and the all-consuming fretting that comes with it require so much mental energy that the poor have little brain power left to devote to other areas of life, according to the findings of an international study published on Thursday. The mental strain could be costing poor people up to 13 IQ (intelligence quotient) points… Read More »

A Potential Cause of Autism? Key Enzymes Are Found to Have a “Profound Effect” Across Dozens of Genes Linked to Autism

Problems with a key group of enzymes called topoisomerases can have profound effects on the genetic machinery behind brain development and potentially lead to autism spectrum disorder (ASD), according to research announced today in the journal Nature. Scientists at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine have described a finding that represents a significant… Read More »

Brain Protein Is a Key to ‘Senior Moments,’ Study Finds

A protein in the brain could hold the key to reversing the age-related memory loss that causes “senior moments” of forgetfulness, Columbia University researchers report. Deficiency of a protein called RbAp48 in the hippocampus appears to significantly contribute to the memory loss that creeps up on you as you age, said study co-author Dr. Scott… Read More »

MIT researchers reveal how the brain keeps eyes on the prize

As anyone who has traveled with young children knows, maintaining focus on distant goals can be a challenge. A new study from MIT suggests how the brain achieves this task, and indicates that the neurotransmitter dopamine may signal the value of long-term rewards. The findings may also explain why patients with Parkinson’s disease – in… Read More »

Sleep aid from the pumpkin patch? Ontario doctor creates all-natural solution

… one psychiatrist, inundated with patients with insomnia… [has] an entrepreneurial medical story with worldwide appeal. Stratford Ont.-based psychiatrist Dr. Craig Hudson said he started noticing about 10 years ago that many of his patients were complaining about their inability to sleep or stay asleep. Many of them were taking sleep medications or over-the-counter sleep… Read More »

The Anchoring Effect

Your teen is in desperate need of a new wardrobe. You set a day for a shopping trip. Lucky you. It’s not long until your daughter finds the perfect pair of jeans. Great, you tell her — until you check the price tag: $149.95. “Sorry honey, no deal. Too expensive. I’m sure you can find… Read More »