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Rats Have Imaginations, Too

Rats Have
Just Like
We Do
new study

Rats Have Imaginations, Just Like We Do

Study has wide-ranging implications, and not just for rodents

(Newser) - Humans aren't the only creatures in the animal kingdom with imaginations, a new study suggests. It seems that rats are in the club, too, reports Scientific American . In a series of remarkable experiments, researchers at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute in Virginia concluded that rats are capable of visualizing...

Consciousness May Occur After Heart, Brain Flatline

Brain signals support idea of near-death experiences amid cardiac arrest: study

(Newser) - Their hearts and brains had flatlined. Yet as doctors tried to revive their "technically dead" patients, some of those patients were aware of what was going on. One patient recalled people placing electrodes on their chest and feeling the subsequent shock, per the National Post . Others "were able...

In First, Doc Pulls Live Worm From Human Brain
In First, Doc Pulls
Live Worm From
Human Brain

In First, Doc Pulls Live Worm From Human Brain

Australian neurosurgeon was as grossed out as you are

(Newser) - The call went out to Dr. Sanjaya Senanayake, an infectious diseases physician at Canberra Hospital in Australia, from a neurosurgeon who'd just performed brain surgery. "Oh, my god, you wouldn't believe what I just found in this lady's brain," Dr. Hari Priya Bandi said, according...

Daytime Napping May Combat Brain Shrinkage
Daytime Napping May
Combat Brain Shrinkage

Daytime Napping May Combat Brain Shrinkage

Those with genetic predisposition to habitual daytime napping found to have larger brain volume

(Newser) - Adults who partake in short daytime naps could be doing more than catching up on sleep. New research suggests they could also be slowing the rate at which the brain shrinks with age. Researchers at University College London and Uruguay's University of the Republic took data from 35,080...

We Like Hearing Nice Sounds in Our Left Ears
Want to Whisper Something
Nice? Use the Left Ear
New Study

Want to Whisper Something Nice? Use the Left Ear

Researchers find a pronounced preference through brain scans

(Newser) - If you've ever noticed a subtle bias toward your left ear when enjoying some pleasant singing or the mellifluous voice of your favorite podcaster, it's not just you. IFL cites a study published in Frontiers in Neuroscience that details how a team of Swiss researchers discovered that our...

Humans Could Potentially Put on a Helmet and Hibernate

Scientists induce short-term hibernation in mice and rats with ultrasonic pulses to the brain

(Newser) - Rats, like humans, don't naturally hibernate. But scientists have figured out a way to induce a torpor-like state in the rodents which, as the Guardian reports, raises the prospect that the same thing can happen in humans, with a host of hard-to-imagine ramifications in fields ranging from space travel...

Activity in Dying Brains Hints at Moments of Consciousness

Surges of electricity raise intriguing questions about near-death experiences

(Newser) - Activity in dying brains may provide insight into the possibility of brief conscious experiences in the last moments of life, according to research reported by Live Science . The study, published in the journal PNAS , observed electrical activity in the brains of dying patients and found that some individuals exhibited organized-looking...

Her Fetus Needed Care ASAP. She Agreed to In Utero Surgery

Little Denver is doing great after rare vein of Galen malformation was picked up on 30-week ultrasound

(Newser) - When Louisiana's Kenyatta Coleman went for a 30-week ultrasound while pregnant with daughter Denver, she was hoping for a routine checkup, as the previous ones had been. What doctors noticed at that visit, however, led to what looks to be the United States' first brain surgery on a baby...

Experts Struggle to Explain Rise in Children's Brain Infections

Pandemic could be linked to increase, or even COVID-19 itself

(Newser) - From 2015 to 2021, Nevada's Clark County averaged five cases a year of pediatric brain abscesses. Last year, there were 18. Researchers presented the finding this week to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Epidemic Intelligence Service conference to bring attention to the baffling increase in life-threatening...

At Musk's 'Show and Tell,' New Demo of Brain Implant Device

Billionaire says human trials of device from his Neuralink company are imminent

(Newser) - Elon Musk held a "show and tell" event Wednesday night, but it had nothing to do with his most recent Twitter troubles . Instead, the billionaire showed off a brain implant device developed by one of this other companies, Neuralink—a device he says will link the human brain to...

Brain Plays Surprising Role When We Get Sick
Brain Plays Surprising Role
When We Get Sick
new studies

Brain Plays Surprising Role When We Get Sick

Studies suggest it hijacks our normal systems to make us feel lousy, for the greater good

(Newser) - When you're laid up with a cold or flu, it's not a virus or bacteria making you feel awful and lethargic—it's your own brain. And it's all in the service of helping you get better, according to two new studies in Nature summed up in...

Dishes Full of Brain Cells Teach Themselves to Play Pong

'When they are in the game, they believe they are the paddle'

(Newser) - Scientists at Cortical Labs call dishes full of brain cells "cyborg brains"—and they've learned to play the computer game Pong with surprising speed. The mini-brains, some of them grown from human stem cells and others from cells of mouse embryos, got the hang of a simplified...

This Is Why Your Brain Logs a Memory as Happy or Sad
Brain Discovery May Be
a Breakthrough on Memories
new study

Brain Discovery May Be a Breakthrough on Memories

Molecule called neurotensin appears to decide whether a memory is logged as good or bad

(Newser) - Brain researchers appear to have figured out precisely how our brains store a particular memory as either good or bad—and the discovery could have implications for the treatment of everything from depression to PTSD. Researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in California say it all comes down...

CTE Finds Its Way Into Another Pro Sport

Scott Vermillion, who died in 2020, is first Major League Soccer player to be diagnosed

(Newser) - It's long been known that football players are at risk for chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE. Now, another sport—one in which the head is often used during game play—is making headlines in connection with the degenerative brain condition. Researchers from Boston University's CTE Center say Scott...

Dying Man's Brain Suggests Life Could Flash Before Our Eyes

87-year-old patient was hooked up to EEG machine at time of death

(Newser) - The last moments of a dying 87-year-old have raised something that researchers write in the journal Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience is "intriguing to speculate" about: that it's possible our life really could flash before our eyes as we die. They came to that conclusion somewhat accidentally. The patient...

Mental Speed Slows at 20? Think Again
Our Brains Stay Sharp
Much Longer Than Thought

Our Brains Stay Sharp Much Longer Than Thought

Study suggests mental acuity is largely unchanged until about age 60

(Newser) - Don't let the youngins tell you your brain is slower than molasses. Though plenty of research shows response times slow beginning around the age of 20, that doesn't necessarily support the widely held view that brain processes slow from that age. Indeed, a new study finds this slowing...

Your Pandemic Drinking Is Hurting Your Brain
Safe Alcohol Consumption?
There's No Such Thing

Safe Alcohol Consumption? There's No Such Thing

Study finds drinking impacts brain's white and gray matter

(Newser) - "So many people drink 'moderately,' and think this is either harmless or even protective," says Oxford University researcher Anya Topiwala. The opposite is true, according to Topiwala's new study , which finds any amount of alcohol consumption reduces the volume of gray matter in the brain,...

Cluster of Cases May Signal Entirely New Brain Disease

Symptoms are similar to Creutzfeldt-Jakob, doctors in New Brunswick, Canada, are stumped

(Newser) - Doctors in Canada may be dealing with an entirely new brain disease that's specific to one part of their country. A cluster of 43 cases is under investigation in the Canadian province of New Brunswick, reports the Guardian . Symptoms are similar to well-known "prion diseases" such as Creutzfeldt-Jakob,...

They Ran Out of Big Game to Hunt. Then Their Brains Swelled

Researchers say shift to hunting smaller game caused early humans' brains to nearly triple in size

(Newser) - In hunting large mammals to near extinction, early modern humans may have prompted an explosion in brain size—in a good way. Humans emerged as big-game hunters in Africa 2.6 million years ago but would ultimately see large animals dwindle as a result of hunting practices, according to Miki...

COVID May Cause Odd Effects, Including a Stutter

Neurological symptoms such as stroke, psychosis not fully understood

(Newser) - We could be dealing with a "public mental health crisis" long after the coronavirus becomes a threat of the past, per Scientific American . Early studies indicate a third of COVID-19 patients develop a neurological symptom, such as stroke, psychosis, mania, a stutter, brain fog, and forgetfulness. "As horrible...

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