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Showing results 11-21 of 120 for 'Brain'

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    Stress-Coping Mechanism Helps Mice Make New Friends

    What makes us reluctant or willing to leave our social comfort zones? Prof. Alon Chen and his team in the Department of Neurobiology found that a molecule that helps the brain cope with stress appeared to act as a ""social switch"" in mice, causing them to either increase interactions with ""friends"" or seek to meet ""strangers."" Since a similar system exists in the human brain, the findings may help explain why some people are better at making new friends, and shed light on the social difficulties experienced by those with autism, schizophrenia, and more.

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    A 3D Compass in the Brain

    How do you know which way you're going? In a first, Prof. Nachum Ulanovsky's ""bat lab"" has identified the neurons that relate to direction. They found that bats' brains contain a sort of 3D compass, enabling them to orient themselves in space. The team believes that the brains of non-flying mammals – including us – also have the 3D compass.

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    Temporary Disconnects Shed Light on Long-Term Brain Dysfunction

    Dr. Ofer Yizhar is a pioneer in optogenetics, which employs light to manipulate the living brain. He is using it to study long-range communication across the brain, and since mental and neurological diseases may result from changes in such extended connectivity, his work could result in better understanding of mental illness – and better treatments.

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    People With Anxiety Show Fundamental Differences in Perception

    Why are some people so much more anxious than others? Research shows that there are real differences in the way they perceive the world. In a process called overgeneralization, even neutral stimuli can remind the anxious person of emotionally charged stimuli, triggering anxiety. Greater understanding of the anxious brain could lead to better treatments.

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    Disrupted Immunity in the Fetal Brain Linked to Neurodevelopmental Disorders

    New research from the Institute demonstrates that, in mice, disrupted immunity in the fetal brain is linked to neurodevelopmental disorders. The multi-department study revealed that when a pregnant female is attacked by external factors such as viruses, the brain of the fetus does not develop as it should, resulting in autistic and schizophrenic behavior.

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    Receptive to Stress

    Prof. Alon Chen's lab discovered that a receptor, CRFR1, plays a surprising role in the body's stress response. In mice without CRFR1, females had trouble regulating temperature and blood sugar, while males were barely affected. The results could help develop treatments for regulating hunger or stress responses, including anxiety and depression.

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    Bats Remember Directions

    Bats - and humans - can find their favorite fruit stand (or coffee shop) even when it's hidden behind a screen or buildings. How? Prof. Nachum Ulanovsky and team have now identified the neurons that point bats in the right direction, even when their destination is obscured. This could shed light on Alzheimer's and other disorders.

  • Memory Machine

    Weizmann researchers have found that the process of storing long-term memories is dynamic, and that these memories can be erased. Their findings may help lead to future treatments for memory problems.