16 Stories

MRIs Reveal How Little Lies Snowball Into Bigger Ones

'The brain adapts to dishonesty'

(Newser) - Everybody lies at some point, but scientists say they've uncovered a biological mechanism supporting the "slippery slope" that leads some from smaller acts of dishonesty to larger transgressions. Reporting in the journal Nature Neuroscience , they write that MRI scans allowed them to watch how a particular part of... More »

Mom's Voice Really Fires Up a Kid's Brain

Researchers use MRI scans to observe the impact a mother's voice has

(Newser) - Newborns can pick out their mother's voice in their first days of life, and while the stimulating sound of mom's voice has long been connected to the early emotional and social development of children, little is understood neurologically. Now researchers report in the Proceedings of the National Academy ... More »

Brain Scan 'Fingerprints' Can Show How Smart We Are

Scientists say 'connectivity profiles' may predict how well we do on cognitive tasks

(Newser) - Each person's brain activity, or "connectivity profile," may be as unique as a set of fingerprints, YaleNews reports—and could prove useful in IDing individuals, assessing intelligence, and predicting future success on certain tasks. In a study published Monday in Nature Neuroscience , scientists reviewed fMRI scans for... More »

New Gulf War Syndrome Discovery Is 'Huge'

Findings will allow doctors to quickly arrive at a diagnosis

(Newser) - Scientists now know that Gulf War Syndrome is more than just a psychological condition—it's actually tied to brain damage . But for the first time, they have zeroed in on physical proof that this is the case. The Georgetown researchers used fMRI machines on 31 Gulf War vets and... More »

Why Hoarders Can't Let Go

Decision-making parts of their brains go into 'overdrive'

(Newser) - If you've ever watched A&E's Hoarders and wondered what makes it so hard for the show's subjects to throw away their clutter, a new study may have an answer for you. Researchers scanned the brains of 43 people with the hoarding disorder and compared them to... More »

Reckless Teens Have More Mature Brains

Study links risky behavior to a better crop of white matter

(Newser) - Conventional wisdom says that teens who experiment with drugs, sex, and other risky behaviors do so because their brains—specifically the frontal-lobe areas responsible for decision making—are immature. But a new study turns that notion upside down, suggesting that risky teens have more mature brains than teens who play... More »

Alzheimer's Test: Do You Recognize This Person?

(Newser) - If you have trouble remembering who Britney Spears is, there’s some good news and bad news. Good news: You have managed to forget Britney Spears. Bad news: You might be at risk for Alzheimer’s, according to a new study. A team of scientists recently found that people with... More »

Alcoholics Are Less Able to Read Your Face

Sensitivity is lower even when drinkers are sober for years: study

(Newser) - Long-term alcoholics have a diminished ability to sense others’ emotions, even if they have been sober for years, the Chicago Tribune reports. A new study used functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) to look at the brain activity of abstinent alcoholics and non-alcoholics while they looked at pictures of faces that... More »

Girls Bond, Boys Compete: Brain Study

Scans confirm gender split on one-on-one interaction

(Newser) - Ever wonder why girls are so fixated on swapping friendship bracelets? They may just be wired that way, according to a new study. Using MRIs to look inside tweens' and teens' brains, researchers found that one-on-one interactions got girls’ synapses firing, Time reports. Boys focused less on other individuals than... More »

Scientists Read Subjects' Location From Brain Scans

(Newser) - Decoding part of the complex system used by the brain to store memories has allowed scientists to determine a person’s location by looking at brain scans, Wired reports. A study took images of the hippocampus—the part responsible for spatial relationship and short-term memories—as individuals navigated a virtual-reality... More »

Japanese Scientists Can Read Your Mind

They find a way to extract images directly from the brain

(Newser) - The Thought Police could eventually exist in reality, if they can just figure out how to harness new technology developed by Japanese researchers, the Daily Yomuri reports. The team managed to re-create images that people were looking at—using only subjects' recorded brain activity. This is the first successful display... More »

Bullies May Enjoy Inflicting Pain

Brain scans show agressors feel reward watching others suffer

(Newser) - Bullies appear to enjoy seeing other people in pain, Reuters reports. Researchers in Chicago took brain scans of two sample groups of teens while showing them videos of one person hurting another. When showed violence, one group of teens, who were diagnosed with aggressive-conduct disorder and had recently attacked schoolmates,... More »

It's a Fine Line Between Love, Hate in the Brain

But hate appears to be a more calculating, rational emotion

(Newser) - Areas of the brain involved in hatred are also activated by love, a study suggests. Researchers took images of brain activity when subjects looked at a photo of someone they despised, ABC News reports. While not identical, the pattern of brain activation those images triggered involved some of the same... More »

Why Girls Are Better at Language

Study finds brain wiring gives girls the edge

(Newser) - Study after study has found that girls have better language skills than boys, and scientists now think they've found a biological reason why, Scientific American reports. Researchers discovered that girls showed more activity in the language part of their brains, which deciphers abstract encoding, than boys. The boys had more... More »

Mind-Reading Edges Closer to Reality

New computer can determine what you're looking at

(Newser) - Mind-reading has taken a step toward possibility with a new computer that can decode brain activity to determine what a person is looking at with up to 90% accuracy, the Independent reports. With improvements, the technology could be able to reconstruct any image a person could conjure up—and someday,... More »

Study Finds No Evidence of ESP

But you knew we were going to say that, right?

(Newser) - You might have had a feeling, but ESP is not real—at least according to two Harvard researchers who used brain-scanning technology to investigate the existence of extrasensory perception. The brain registers familiar images differently than new ones, but researchers found no difference in activity when subjects processed images "... More »

16 Stories