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The Thalamus is an area of the brain that helps process information from the senses and transmit it to other parts of the brain.

Astrocytes implicated in preclinical AD

Astrocytes are activated in the brains of people with autosomal dominant Alzheimer’s disease long before symptoms appear and even before amyloidosis begins, a study shows. [More]
Study could open door for new treatment targets to help Parkinson's disease patients walk more easily

Study could open door for new treatment targets to help Parkinson's disease patients walk more easily

Two secrets of one of the brain's most enigmatic regions have finally been revealed. In a pair of new studies, scientists from the Gladstone Institutes have discovered a specific neural circuit that controls walking, and they found that input to this circuit is disrupted in Parkinson's disease. [More]
Higher-order thalamus enhances and temporarily stores sensory signals

Higher-order thalamus enhances and temporarily stores sensory signals

Every day, we constantly absorb information through our sensory organs, which the brain then needs to process correctly. The information initially reaches the main relay center, the thalamus, and then travels to the cerebral cortex. [More]
Ultrafast near-infrared lasers deliver gene therapy to treat macular degeneration

Ultrafast near-infrared lasers deliver gene therapy to treat macular degeneration

Millions of adults over age 50 struggle each year with vision loss caused by damage to the retina or common macular degeneration. [More]
Study explores how contextual information shapes our visual perception

Study explores how contextual information shapes our visual perception

The Thalamus not only relays visual signals from the eye to the visual cortex as previously thought, but also conveys additional, contextual information. [More]
Bern study sheds light on the brain mechanism of arousal

Bern study sheds light on the brain mechanism of arousal

Scientists from Bern have discovered a mechanism which is responsible for the rapid arousal from sleep and anesthesia in the brain. The results of their study suggest new strategies for the medical treatment of sleep disorders and recovery of consciousness in vegetative states. [More]
Central thalamus tunes the brain to different states of activity and arousal

Central thalamus tunes the brain to different states of activity and arousal

Scientists showed that they could alter brain activity of rats and either wake them up or put them in an unconscious state by changing the firing rates of neurons in the central thalamus, a region known to regulate arousal. [More]
Brain regions cause PTSD patients to generalize non-threatening events

Brain regions cause PTSD patients to generalize non-threatening events

Regions of the brain function differently among people with post-traumatic stress disorder, causing them to generalize non-threatening events as if they were the original trauma, according to new research from Duke Medicine and the Durham VA Medical Center. [More]
Specific deep-brain circuit's firing frequency can alter forebrain activity, alertness levels

Specific deep-brain circuit's firing frequency can alter forebrain activity, alertness levels

Adjusting a specific deep-brain circuit's firing frequency immediately and dramatically alters rats' forebrain activity and alertness levels, Stanford University School of Medicine investigators have shown. [More]
Researchers identify brain processes in mice that shape different sensory perceptions

Researchers identify brain processes in mice that shape different sensory perceptions

Scientists have long known that when sounds are faint or objects are seen through fog in the distance, repetition of these weak or ambiguous sensory “inputs” can result in different perceptions inside the same brain. [More]
Study shows mindfulness meditation reduces pain more effectively than placebo

Study shows mindfulness meditation reduces pain more effectively than placebo

Scientists at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center have found new evidence that mindfulness meditation reduces pain more effectively than placebo. [More]
Scientists map out the brain circuitry critical for filtering out distractions

Scientists map out the brain circuitry critical for filtering out distractions

In a study of mice, scientists discovered that a brain region called the thalamus may be critical for filtering out distractions. The study, published in Nature and partially funded by the National Institutes of Health, paves the way to understanding how defects in the thalamus might underlie symptoms seen in patients with autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and schizophrenia. [More]
Scientists reveal link between depression and paraventricular thalamus

Scientists reveal link between depression and paraventricular thalamus

Scientists from the RIKEN Brain Science Institute have shown that a mouse strain with a mutation that leads to dysfunction of mitochondria--the "powerhouses" that provide energy to cells--spontaneously undergo periodic episodes of depression-like behavior that resemble those in human. Through this research, published in Molecular Psychiatry, the scientists uncovered a link between depression and the paraventricular thalamus, a region of the brain not previously tied to depression. [More]
MIT neuroscientists discover brain circuit that controls sleep

MIT neuroscientists discover brain circuit that controls sleep

Sleep is usually considered an all-or-nothing state: The brain is either entirely awake or entirely asleep. However, MIT neuroscientists have discovered a brain circuit that can trigger small regions of the brain to fall asleep or become less alert, while the rest of the brain remains awake. [More]
Researchers find potential targets to improve sleep in patients with fibromyalgia

Researchers find potential targets to improve sleep in patients with fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is characterized by chronic pain from no clear source. Patients with fibromyalgia frequently have sleep problems: Their deep sleep brain wave patterns are often disrupted by brain waves that correspond to wakefulness. [More]
MGH papers reveal the way anesthetics affect brains of older patients and children

MGH papers reveal the way anesthetics affect brains of older patients and children

Recent Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) investigations into the neurobiology underlying the effects of general anesthesia have begun to reveal the ways different anesthetic agents alter specific aspects of the brain's electrical signals, reflected by EEG (electroencephalogram) signatures. While those studies have provided information that may lead to improved techniques for monitoring the consciousness of patients receiving general anesthesia, until now they have been conducted in relatively young adult patients. [More]
Georgia State University-led study identifies structural brain abnormalities in schizophrenia patients

Georgia State University-led study identifies structural brain abnormalities in schizophrenia patients

Structural brain abnormalities in patients with schizophrenia, providing insight into how the condition may develop and respond to treatment, have been identified in an internationally collaborative study led by a Georgia State University scientist. [More]
MIT researchers reveal key brainwave changes among patients receiving nitrous oxide

MIT researchers reveal key brainwave changes among patients receiving nitrous oxide

Nitrous oxide, commonly known as "laughing gas," has been used in anesthesiology practice since the 1800s, but the way it works to create altered states is not well understood. In a study published this week in Clinical Neurophysiology, MIT researchers reveal some key brainwave changes among patients receiving the drug. [More]
Duke Medicine scientists produce 3-D map of human brain stem using MRI technology

Duke Medicine scientists produce 3-D map of human brain stem using MRI technology

Scientists at Duke Medicine have produced a 3-D map of the human brain stem at an unprecedented level of detail using MRI technology. [More]
Malfunction of brain architecture can prompt neuron to make 'early-career' switch

Malfunction of brain architecture can prompt neuron to make 'early-career' switch

Scientists at the Salk Institute have discovered that the role of neurons -- which are responsible for specific tasks in the brain -- is much more flexible than previously believed. [More]
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