Archive | Mind and Brain


Eyes used to measure pleasure response

The brain’s pleasure response to tasting food can be accurately measured through the eyes using a common, low-cost ophthalmological tool, say Drexel University researchers who believe the method could be used by both food scientists and clinicians. Study leader Jennifer Nasser details the use of electroretinography (ERG) to measure dopamine levels in the retina in […]

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This is your brain on iTunes

Researchers have been using an MRI scanner to work out what happens in our brain when we decide to purchase a piece of music after we hear it for the first time. The study, conducted at the Montreal Neurological Institute and McGill University, pinpoints the specific brain activity that makes new music rewarding and predicts […]

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Future criminal behavior predicted with brain scan

Researchers from The Mind Research Network and Duke University say neuroimaging data can predict the likelihood of whether a criminal will reoffend following release from prison. Details of the research have been published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The study involved 96 adult male criminal offenders aged between 20 and 52 […]

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Sports brain injury may actually be an autoimmune phenomenon

U.S. medicos have proposed a radical new way of thinking about concussions and sub-concussive hits to the head that are linked to neurological disorders later in life (including the much-publicized chronic traumatic encephalopathy). They suggest that the brain degeneration observed among professional football players could result from an out-of-control immune response, similar to that which […]

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Appreciation of musical harmony is nurture, not nature, say Aussie scientists

Our love of music and appreciation of musical harmony is learnt and not based on natural ability, say researchers at the University of Melbourne (Australia). Their study, appearing in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, directly challenges long-held theories about how humans appreciate music. Study author Neil McLachlan said that traditional analyses of musical harmony […]

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Republicans’ brains wired for fight-or-flight

Measuring the brain activity of Republicans and Democrats while they played a game has revealed striking differences in each group’s cognitive functioning. The findings, appearing in the journalPLOS ONE, are the result of collaborative research by neuroscientists from the University of Exeter and the University of California, San Diego. They suggest that being a Republican […]

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Synesthesia traced to childhood toy

Experiencing a color when viewing particular letters or numbers – known as color-graphemesynesthesia – may partly be a learned behavior, say Stanford researchers who uncovered startlingly similar color-letter pairings shared by a number of color grapheme synesthetes who played with the same childhood toy. Researchers Nathan Witthoft and Jonathan Winawer based their findings, appearing inPsychological […]

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Multitasking: you’re bad at it

Most people believe they can multitask effectively, but a new University of Utah study indicates that the people who multitask the most are the people least capable of doing so. “What is alarming is that people who talk on cells phones while driving tend to be the people least able to multitask well,” lamented Utah […]

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MRI scans reveal fructose’s effects on brain’s appetite regulators

Scans of the human brain after ingesting fructose have provided insights into how the substance affects brain chemistry and increases food-seeking behavior and food intake. The new work, published in JAMA, appears to confirm the much discussed association between fructose intake and bulging waistlines. Conducted by Kathleen A. Page of Yale University, the study set […]

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