Neuroscience

A Binghamton University researcher has established a new framework to help determine whether individuals might be at risk for schizophrenia.

In a study published in this month's Journal of Abnormal Psychology, Mark F. Lenzenweger, a professor of clinical science, neuroscience and cognitive psychology at Binghamton University, State University of New York (SUNY), is the first to have found that abnormalities in eye movements and attention can be used to divide people into two groups in relation to schizophrenia-related risk.

"Schizophrenia affects one in every 100 people," said Lenzenweger, who considers it the costliest form of mental illness known to humankind.

Patients who have gone blind are a step closer to perhaps one day regaining some of their sight.

Researchers at the USC Doheny Eye Institute announced today the next step in their efforts to advance technology that hopefully will help patients with retinitis pigmentosa and macular degeneration regain some vision using an implanted artificial retina.

The announcement by Mark Humayun, professor of ophthalmology at the Keck School of Medicine of USC and associate director of research at the Doheny Retina Institute, came at a press conference at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in San Francisco.


Dr.

Patients with Parkinson's disease who are younger when they develop the condition, have a personality trait known as novelty-seeking or whose personal or family history includes alcohol abuse may be more likely to develop pathological gambling as a side effect of medications used to treat their condition, according to a report in the February issue of Archives of Neurology, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Behaviors associated with impulse control—including compulsive shopping, hypersexuality, binge eating and pathological gambling—have been associated with dopamine agonists, medications used to treat Parkinson's disease.

Several neurological and psychiatric disorders, including schizophrenia, alcoholism, and Parkinson’s disease, are associated with changes in the brain that affect the nerves that communicate with each other through the naturally-produced chemical dopamine. One protein that is crucial for dopamine-mediated neuronal communication in animals is DARPP-32. However, very little is known about the function of this protein in humans.

In a study appearing online on February 8 in advance of publication in the March print issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, Daniel Weinberger and colleagues from the National Institutes of Health show that the gene that encodes DARPP-32 exhibits genetic variation.

"Time" is the most popular noun in the English language, yet how would we tell time if we didn't have access to the plethora of watches, clocks and cell phones at our disposal?

For decades, scientists have believed that the brain possesses an internal clock that allows it to keep track of time. Now a UCLA study in the Feb. 1 edition of Neuron proposes a new model in which a series of physical changes to the brain's cells helps the organ to monitor the passage of time.


The changing colors reflect how a brain cell network evolves over time in response to stimuli. (Credit: Buonomano Lab)

Science is Stalling.

Part I- Limitations of Journals Today.

An  automated system of measuring decentration of anterior segment structures from  geometric central  axis 

Tariq M Aslam*,  Abha Gupta*, Chris Rose**, .

 

*          Manchester Eye Hospital

New research suggests that choosing a mate may be partially determined by your genes. A study published in Psychological Science has found a link between a set of genes involved with immune function and partner selection in humans.

Vertebrate species and humans are inclined to prefer mates who have dissimilar MHC (major histocompatibility complex) genotypes, rather than similar ones. This preference may help avoid inbreeding between partners, as well as strengthen the immune systems of their offspring through exposure to a wider variety of pathogens.

The study investigated whether MHC similarity among romantically involved couples predicted aspects of their sexual relationship.

Always thought women were the stronger sex? Okay, I admit it, me too.

But I am inclined to be a little skeptical when someone pimping their book cites ancillary evidence rather than studies so even if the logic is good I tend to maintain a healthy disbelief.

Ryuichi Kaneko and Dr. Kunio Kitamura, two of the co-authors of "Sex no Subete ga Wakaru Hon (Everything You Need to Know About Sex)" write in the Mainichi Daily News: