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Mini-brains grown in a lab have human-like brain activity

September 10th, 2019 at 3:29 am » Comments Off

A new study promises new paths to research mental illness, but raises questions about whether so-called organoids could develop consciousness Alysson Muotri was dumbfounded when the pea-sized blobs of human brain cells that he was growing in the lab started emitting electrical pulses. He initially thought the electrodes he was using were malfunctioning. Muotri was […]



Cambridge scientists reverse ageing process in rat brain stem cells

September 9th, 2019 at 11:34 am » Comments Off

Aged rat brain stem cells grown on a soft surface (right) show more healthy, vigorous growth than similar aged brain stem cells grown on a stiff surface (left) New research reveals how increasing brain stiffness as we age causes brain stem cell dysfunction, and demonstrates new ways to reverse older stem cells to a younger, […]



A map of the brain could help to guess what you’re reading

September 1st, 2019 at 3:18 am » Comments Off

A 3D map of how the brain responds to words could unlock new ways to understand and treat dyslexia and speech disorders. Map-making: Researchers at UC Berkeley used functional MRI to measure nine volunteers’ brain activity (using blood flow as a proxy) as they listened to, and then read, stories from “The Moth Radio Hour,” […]



Neuroscientists decode brain speech signals into written text

August 15th, 2019 at 11:43 am » Comments Off

Study funded by Facebook aims to improve communication with paralysed patients The study recording brain signals sent to trigger organ movement is considered a breakthrough. When Stephen Hawking wanted to speak, he chose letters and words from a synthesiser screen controlled by twitches of a muscle in his cheek. But the painstaking process the cosmologist […]



Chinese scientists have put human brain genes in monkeys—and yes, they may be smarter

April 19th, 2019 at 10:08 am » Comments Off

A quest to understand how human intelligence evolved raises some ethical questions. Human intelligence is one of evolution’s most consequential inventions. It is the result of a sprint that started millions of years ago, leading to ever bigger brains and new abilities. Eventually, humans stood upright, took up the plow, and created civilization, while our […]



Should we gamify citizenship?