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Study identifies touch-activated molecule in skin cells

Study identifies touch-activated molecule in skin cells

In a study published in the April 6 online edition of the journal Nature, a team of Columbia University Medical Center researchers led by Ellen Lumpkin, PhD, associate professor of somatosensory biology, solve an age-old mystery of touch: how cells just beneath the skin surface enable us to feel fine details and textures. [More]
Scientists present protein that facilitates control of nerve cells by light

Scientists present protein that facilitates control of nerve cells by light

​Networked nerve cells are the control center of organisms. In a nematode, 300 nerve cells are sufficient to initiate complex behavior. To understand the properties of the networks, re-searchers switch cells on and off with light and observe the resulting behavior of the organism. [More]
Opiate use alters activity of specific protein needed for normal functioning of brain's reward center

Opiate use alters activity of specific protein needed for normal functioning of brain's reward center

Identifying the specific pathways that promote opioid addiction, pain relief, and tolerance are crucial for developing more effective and less dangerous analgesics, as well as developing new treatments for addiction. [More]

Optogenetics technique allows scientists to control neurons' electrical activity

Optogenetics is a technique that allows scientists to control neurons' electrical activity with light by engineering them to express light-sensitive proteins. Within the past decade, it has become a very powerful tool for discovering the functions of different types of cells in the brain. [More]
Researchers pinpoint neural circuitry that promotes stress-induced anxiety

Researchers pinpoint neural circuitry that promotes stress-induced anxiety

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, over 18 percent of American adults suffer from anxiety disorders, characterized as excessive worry or tension that often leads to other physical symptoms. Previous studies of anxiety in the brain have focused on the amygdala, an area known to play a role in fear. [More]
New ways to treat substance abuse, neurological diseases and mental illnesses

New ways to treat substance abuse, neurological diseases and mental illnesses

​Researchers at the University at Buffalo have found a way to change alcohol drinking behavior in rodents, using the emerging technique of optogenetics, which uses light to stimulate neurons. [More]
Researchers gain better understanding of neurochemical basis of addiction with optogenetics

Researchers gain better understanding of neurochemical basis of addiction with optogenetics

Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center researchers are gaining a better understanding of the neurochemical basis of addiction with a new technology called optogenetics. [More]

Optogenetics offers a promising therapy for retinal degeneration

For a few years now optogenetics has been seen as a very promising therapy for progressive blindness, for example when it is a result of retinal degeneration. [More]
Olympus hosts fourth annual neuroimaging symposium on functional brain imaging with cellular resolution

Olympus hosts fourth annual neuroimaging symposium on functional brain imaging with cellular resolution

Olympus is hosting its fourth annual neuroimaging symposium in conjunction with the 2013 meeting of the Society for Neuroscience (SfN) on Monday, November 11 in San Diego. The Olympus Neuroimaging Symposium will be held near the Convention Center at the San Diego Marriott Marquis and Marina, San Diego Ballroom – Salon A, beginning at 6:30pm. The symposium and reception are open to all media and SfN registered attendees. [More]
Brain & Behavior Research Foundation announces recipients of NARSAD Investigator Grants

Brain & Behavior Research Foundation announces recipients of NARSAD Investigator Grants

The Brain & Behavior Research Foundation (formerly known as NARSAD, the National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and Depression), under the direction of Dr. Jeffrey Borenstein, President & CEO, has announced the latest recipients of its NARSAD Distinguished Investigator Grants. [More]
UMMS professor receives EUREKA grant to develop light activated nanoparticles for imaging brain tissue

UMMS professor receives EUREKA grant to develop light activated nanoparticles for imaging brain tissue

University of Massachusetts Medical School Assistant Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Pharmacology Gang Han, PhD, has received a $1.3 million EUREKA (Exceptional Unconventional Research Enabling Knowledge Acceleration) grant from the National Institute of Mental Health to develop light activated nanoparticles that can be used to image live brain tissue. [More]
CSHL researchers explore how the brain integrates multiple signals to identify one unique smell

CSHL researchers explore how the brain integrates multiple signals to identify one unique smell

Think of the smell of an orange, a lemon, and a grapefruit. Each has strong acidic notes mixed with sweetness. And yet each fresh, bright scent is distinguishable from its relatives. These fruits smell similar because they share many chemical compounds. How, then does the brain tell them apart? How does the brain remember a complex and often overlapping chemical signature as a particular scent? [More]
Brain & Behavior Research Foundation to hold research symposium on mental health

Brain & Behavior Research Foundation to hold research symposium on mental health

The Brain & Behavior Research Foundation, an organization dedicated to improving the lives of those with mental illness through the transformative power of neuroscience and psychiatric research, will hold its 25th Annual Mental Health Research Symposium on Friday, October 25th from 9:00 am to 4:30 p.m. at the Kaufman Music Center, located at 129 W. 67th St. in New York City. [More]

Brain & Behavior Research Foundation to honor 7 scientists for exceptional research on mental health

The Brain & Behavior Research Foundation celebrates the transformative power of neuroscience and psychiatric research to improve the lives of those with mental illness. Seven exceptional scientists will be honored at the Annual National Awards Dinner at the Pierre Hotel in New York City on Friday, October 25, 2013. [More]
Researchers identify link between neuronal activity in lateral hypothalamus and state of REM sleep

Researchers identify link between neuronal activity in lateral hypothalamus and state of REM sleep

A team of scientists led by Dr. Antoine Adamantidis, a researcher at the Douglas Mental Health University Institute and an assistant professor at McGill University, has released the findings from their latest study, which will appear in the October issue of the prestigious scientific journal Nature Neuroscience. [More]
Functional brain mapping and high speed physiology multiphoton system from Olympus

Functional brain mapping and high speed physiology multiphoton system from Olympus

The Olympus FluoView® FVMPE-RS, a dedicated multiphoton microscope system, enables high-precision, ultra-fast scanning and stimulation, allowing researchers to see deep within specimens, take measurements at the highest speeds, and capture images even when working under the most demanding conditions. [More]
Prairie Technologies acquired by Bruker

Prairie Technologies acquired by Bruker

Bruker Corporation today announced that it has acquired Prairie Technologies, Inc. (Prairie), a provider of life science fluorescence microscopy products. The acquisition strengthens Bruker’s position in life science markets, adding to the Bruker Nano Surfaces Division’s existing life science atomic force microscopy (Bio-AFM) systems. [More]
Penn’s ITMAT symposium addresses topics of direct relevance to translational science

Penn’s ITMAT symposium addresses topics of direct relevance to translational science

The Institute for Translational Medicine and Therapeutics' 7th Annual International Symposium (ITMAT) symposium, Harnessing the Paradox: Personalization and the Science of Scale, to be held in October 2013, will address topics of direct relevance to translational science. [More]

Potential drug target to treat depression and other mood disorders may lie in GABA neurons

A new drug target to treat depression and other mood disorders may lie in a group of GABA neurons (gamma-aminobutyric acid -the neurotransmitters which inhibit other cells) shown to contribute to symptoms like social withdrawal and increased anxiety, Penn Medicine researchers report in a new study in the Journal of Neuroscience. [More]
Johns Hopkins researchers use low-energy light to solve serious heart problems

Johns Hopkins researchers use low-energy light to solve serious heart problems

When a beating heart slips into an irregular, life-threatening rhythm, the treatment is well known: deliver a burst of electric current from a pacemaker or defibrillator. But because the electricity itself can cause pain, tissue damage and other serious side-effects, a Johns Hopkins-led research team wants to replace these jolts with a kinder, gentler remedy: light. [More]