News

Saturday, 08 July 2017 11:09

Doodle your depression away

A new study at the Drexel University in Philadelphia, USA says that artistic pursuit, doodling in particular, gladdens the brain. “When you doodle the reward pathway in your brain get super active,” says Girija Kaimal who led the investigation. “This leads to a feeling of pleasure.” And you do not have to be a Rembrandt to experience such art-induced delight. “The level of your artistic skill is not particularly important,” says the study, “so long…
It may be possible to ward off Alzheimer's disease, a chronic and thus far incurable and irreversible neurodegenerative disease, simply by adding extra-virgin olive oil to your daily diet according to a study. Published in prestigious journal Annals of Clinical and Translational Neurology the study conducted by the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University (LKSOM) in Philadelphia, says that extra-virgin olive oil -- a key ingredient of Mediterranean food –appears to defend the…
Friday, 09 June 2017 10:58

You can get more creative on demand

Want to get more creative? Just shut down parts of your brain. It’s all down to understanding the mechanics of creativity, say researchers at the London-based Queen Mary University and Goldsmiths University who led the study. For years neuroscientists, philosophers, corporate leaders and artists have grappled with a core question related to creativity: what can we do to become more creative? Finally, it appears, we are close to an answer. In their quest to find…
An enzyme that apparently helps brain tumours grow has been uncovered by researchers at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Centre in Houston. The finding opens the possibility for new approaches to fighting the lethal disease that has thus far proved unstoppable. The study demonstrates the ability of brain tumours to feed and thrive even when deprived of nutrients and oxygen. This happens because of an enzyme known as acetyl-CoA synthetase 2 (ACSS2), which…
Medulloblastoma, the most common type of malignant cancers among children, is in fact a melange of seven separate conditions each calling for a different treatment according to a study by a group of scientists at the Newcastle and Northumbria universities. The disease currently causes around 10 per cent of all childhood cancer deaths The study published in the prestigious journal The Lancet Oncology says that seven distinct sub- groups each distinguished by its own distinct…
Friday, 26 May 2017 12:04

We can ‘smell’ as well as dogs

A neuroscientist has stated that human olfactory abilities are second to none. When it comes to certain smells in particular our smelling prowess can match even that of dogs, which have higher concentration of olfactory receptors in their noses. In the case of some scents, such as amyl acetate, the main odorant in bananas, humans in fact outdo dogs says a study led by John McGann, a neuroscientist at Rutgers University in New Jersey and…
As baby brains form in the womb something, somewhere goes wrong with their wiring leading to conditions like autism, attention deficit disorder and cerebral palsy. Now, as part of a €15m pan-European project (Developing Human Connectome) scientists at the Imperial College London are tracking down these aberrations by using thousands of high-resolution images of pre-natal babies shot in their wombs…from 22 weeks to the time they are born. This landmark project to map the wiring…
Thursday, 18 May 2017 17:46

Brain hates dirty money

Money cannot buy happiness. Sure, but only if it is not made the right way! Moral stories you heard from your granny now have scientific legs thanks to the work of a group of researchers at the University College London. Their report says that ill-gotten gains elicit a much weaker response in the brain’s reward system than money made scrupulously. In simpler words, the brain winces at the thought of exploiting others for making money--the…
Sunday, 14 May 2017 11:19

Now type with your mind not fingers!

In the movie Theory of Everything, a stricken Stephen Hawking, genius scientist and author of the bestselling novel Brief History of Time, struggles with a raft of ungainly gadgets to translate his powerful thoughts into printed words. Now, if Facebook’s audacious scientific project succeeds then Hawking and others like him who suffer from crippling motor neuron diseases may never need any of those contraptions to ‘write’ out their thoughts. The social media major is developing…
In a discovery that promises to enhance our understanding of diseases like dementia and stroke, scientists at the University of Queensland in Australia have tracked down a type of cell that cleans up the brain. The researchers found the cell in zebrafish-- an excellent model for studying human biology partly because they are transparent, which enables scientific investigators to easily study what happens inside their brains using advanced light microscopes. Said Ben Hogan, associate professor,…