Where is the periaqueductal gray?
The periaqueductal gray, or PAG, is an area of gray matter found in the midbrain. The PAG surrounds the cerebral aqueduct (hence the name periaqueductal) and occupies a column of brainstem that stretches about 14 mm long. There are no obvious visible anatomical divisions within the PAG, but researchers have divided the PAG into four columns based on differences in connectivity and function: the dorsomedial, dorsolater........ Read more »
Behbehani, M. (1995) Functional characteristics of the midbrain periaqueductal gray. Progress in Neurobiology, 46(6), 575-605. DOI: 10.1016/0301-0082(95)00009-K
In my last post I summarized a review of the pharmacology of the drug dextromethorphan.This drug is receiving significant attention for disorders in neuroscience medicine. A phase 2 clinical trial of dextromethorphan-quinidine (DM-Q) was published last fall in JAMA.Here are the key design and results from this study:Subjects: 220 subjects with a diagnosis of probable Alzheimer's disease with clinically significant agitation.Randomization Design: This was a five week trial of 3:4 random........ Read more »
Cummings JL, Lyketsos CG, Peskind ER, Porsteinsson AP, Mintzer JE, Scharre DW, De La Gandara JE, Agronin M, Davis CS, Nguyen U.... (2015) Effect of Dextromethorphan-Quinidine on Agitation in Patients With Alzheimer Disease Dementia: A Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA, 314(12), 1242-54. PMID: 26393847
As basic and clinical sciences advance, it becomes increasing important to understand the role of multidisciplinary efforts in scientific progress. In this post, I propose rethinking and renaming the medically-related neuroscience disciplines into a new specialty called neuroscience medicine.Basic neuroscience research has evolved and emerged as a powerful discipline due to the increasing use of multidisciplinary research teams. Basic neuroscience involves collaboration of various scientifi........ Read more »
Neuroamanda explains a recent study that showed how top-down signals during NREM sleep affect memory consolidation in mice.... Read more »
Miyamoto, D., Hirai, D., Fung, C., Inutsuka, A., Odagawa, M., Suzuki, T., Boehringer, R., Adaikkan, C., Matsubara, C., Matsuki, N.... (2016) Top-down cortical input during NREM sleep consolidates perceptual memory. Science. DOI: 10.1126/science.aaf0902
An investigational app and online program to reduce alcohol intake is now available free to the public.This tool is an application of cognitive bias modification. A link to a study supporting cognitive bias modification is noted in the citation below. Click on the PMID link to get to the abstract.The program uses a 15 minutes per day tool for four days.The program was developed at the London School of Economics by Professor Paul Dolan.Users who sign up to use the tool will be providing data to f........ Read more »
Gladwin TE, Rinck M, Eberl C, Becker ES, Lindenmeyer J, & Wiers RW. (2015) Mediation of cognitive bias modification for alcohol addiction via stimulus-specific alcohol avoidance association. Alcoholism, clinical and experimental research, 39(1), 101-7. PMID: 25623410
The Harvard-based Nurses' Health Study has been a remarkably productive longitudinal health study.My wife has been a subject in this study and frequently completes interval questionnaires regarding her health status.A recent publication looked at the relationship between religious service attendance and mortality in the Nurses's Health Study cohort.This manuscript tried to provide a more valid look at the relationship between religiosity/spirituality and health. Previous studies have found a lin........ Read more »
Li, S., Stampfer, M., Williams, D., & VanderWeele, T. (2016) Association of Religious Service Attendance With Mortality Among Women. JAMA Internal Medicine. DOI: 10.1001/jamainternmed.2016.1615
T. gondii cyst in a mouse brain.
For a simple protozoan, Toxoplasma gondii has experienced something of a meteoric rise in popularity over the past several years. Actually, to be fair T. gondii has garnered quite a bit of interest since the 1930s, when it was discovered the parasite could be transmitted from a mother to a fetus in the womb, sometimes resulting in severe congenital disorders. Curiosity about T. gondii grew significantly in the early 2000s, ........ Read more »
Homicide rates in the U.S. represent a significant public health challenge. Homicide is a top ten leading cause of death in many groups in the U.S.One method to reduce homicide rates is to quickly identify and arrest individuals who have committed homicide. This is due to the fact that individuals committing homicide have a high rate of future homicide.A recent study from Michigan State University and Indiana University examined characteristics of U.S. police departments that have high rates of ........ Read more »
Carter, D., & Carter, J. (2015) Effective Police Homicide Investigations: Evidence From Seven Cities With High Clearance Rates. Homicide Studies, 20(2), 150-176. DOI: 10.1177/1088767915576996
Smartphones contribute a treasure trove of data that is likely to expand our knowledge of a variety of human behaviors.An example of this is a recent study published in Science Advances by a research team from the University of Michigan.The University of Michigan team developed a smartphone app called ENTRAIN and then used the app to collect sleep data on subjects from around the world.They came up with some very interesting findings including the following:The time of going to sleep appears mor........ Read more »
Walch, O., Cochran, A., & Forger, D. (2016) A global quantification of "normal" sleep schedules using smartphone data. Science Advances, 2(5). DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1501705
(Also appeared on United Academics) Sleep cycles When we leave the day behind us and nestle ourselves in our cosy beds, we sleep. Sleep, however, comes in stages that repeat themselves. It’s a five-stage cycle that last about 90 minutes in humans. Four stages of non-REM sleep are followed by a period of REM (Rapid […]... Read more »
Ólafsdóttir HF, Barry C, Saleem AB, Hassabis D, & Spiers HJ. (2015) Hippocampal place cells construct reward related sequences through unexplored space. eLife. PMID: 26112828
Shein-Idelson M, Ondracek JM, Liaw HP, Reiter S, & Laurent G. (2016) Slow waves, sharp waves, ripples, and REM in sleeping dragons. Science (New York, N.Y.), 352(6285), 590-5. PMID: 27126045
The good things in Melbourne are hidden away. Behind non-descript doors and trick bookcases. On rooftops. Down laneways. Pop-ups, warehouses, basements; Lady Melbs rewards those who seek. Which requires little persuasion, I have noticed. Melburnians go silly at the whiff of intrigue.... Read more »
Berridge, K., Robinson, T., & Aldridge, J. (2009) Dissecting components of reward: ‘Liking’, ‘wanting’, and learning. Current Opinion in Pharmacology, 9(1), 65-73. DOI: 10.1016/j.coph.2008.12.014
Bromberg-Martin, E., Matsumoto, M., & Hikosaka, O. (2010) Dopamine in motivational control: Rewarding, aversive, and alerting. Neuron, 68(5), 815-834. DOI: 10.1016/j.neuron.2010.11.022
Craig, A. (2009) How do you feel — now? The anterior insula and human awareness. Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 10(1), 59-70. DOI: 10.1038/nrn2555
Limb, C., & Braun, A. (2008) Neural substrates of spontaneous musical performance: An fMRI study of jazz improvisation. PLoS ONE, 3(2). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0001679
McPherson, M., Barrett, F., Lopez-Gonzalez, M., Jiradejvong, P., & Limb, C. (2016) Emotional intent modulates the neural substrates of creativity: An fMRI study of emotionally targeted improvisation in jazz musicians. Scientific Reports, 1-14. DOI: 10.1038/srep18460
Yesterday I posted a link to a New York Times article that posted a summary outcome in fourteen participants in TV's "The Biggest Loser" show.The study found a trend towards post-show weight gain for 13/14 of the participants.Four participants actually gained so much weight that after six years they weighed more than before participating in the show.A key finding from the study was this weight gain could be explained by a metabolic response resulting in up to 800 calories less burned daily ........ Read more »
Fothergill, E., Guo, J., Howard, L., Kerns, J., Knuth, N., Brychta, R., Chen, K., Skarulis, M., Walter, M., Walter, P.... (2016) Persistent metabolic adaptation 6 years after “The Biggest Loser” competition. Obesity. DOI: 10.1002/oby.21538
Human behavioral scientists argue that extra-pair copulation is adaptive in human females, as through extra-pair copulation, women can acquire good genes from other potential mates. This is suggested because it is found that women experience greater sexual attraction to particular extra-pair men, but not their own partners, during their highest peak of fertility (Gangestad & […]... Read more »
Greeff, J., & Erasmus, J. (2015) Three hundred years of low non-paternity in a human population. Heredity, 115(5), 396-404. DOI: 10.1038/hdy.2015.36
My alarm goes off at 6am most mornings. I adopted this unfortunate habit some years ago when I discovered I do my best thinking early, with a hot drink and still. My biological sensibilities remain supremely offended by this. (Describing me as a “disgruntled” early riser would not be far from the truth.) Still, among the things that must be thought at 6am, there are a select few which have me in front of my laptop, ready-to-go by 6:20am. As you might have deduced, music neuroscience ........ Read more »
Brown, L., de Bruin, N., Doan, J., Suchowersky, O., & Hu, B. (2010) Obstacle crossing among people with Parkinson's disease is influenced by concurrent music. Journal of Rehabilitation Research and Development, 47(3), 225-231. PMID: 20665348
Downey, L., Blezat, A., Nicholas, J., Omar, R., Golden, H., Mahoney, C., Crutch, S., & Warren, J. (2013) Mentalising music in frontotemporal dementia. Cortex, 49(7), 1844-1855. DOI: 10.1016/j.cortex.2012.09.011
El Haj, M., Fasotti, L., & Allain, P. (2012) The involuntary nature of music-evoked autobiographical memories in Alzheimer's disease. Consciousness and Cognition, 21(1), 238-246. PMID: 22265372
James, C., Dupuis-Lozeron, E., & Hauert, C. (2012) Appraisal of musical syntax violations by primary school children. Swiss Journal of Psychology, 71(3), 161-168. DOI: 10.1024/1421-0185/a000084
Loui, P., Wessel, D., & Kam, C. (2010) Humans rapidly learn grammatical structure in a new musical scale. Music Perception, 27(5), 377-388. DOI: 10.1525/mp.2010.27.5.377
Merrett, D., Peretz, I., & Wilson, S. (2014) Neurobiological, cognitive, and emotional mechanisms in melodic intonation therapy. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 1-11. PMID: 24917811
Mingle, M., Eppley, T., Campbell, M., Hall, K., Horner, V., & de Waal FB. (2014) Chimpanzees prefer African and Indian music over silence. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Animal Learning and Cognition, 40(4), 502-505. PMID: 25546107
Omar, R., Henley, S., Bartlett, J., Hailstone, J., Gordon, E., Sauter, D., Frost, C., Scott, S., & Warren, J. (2011) The structural neuroanatomy of music emotion recognition: Evidence from frontotemporal lobar degeneration. NeuroImage, 56(3), 1814-1821. DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2011.03.002
Osuch, E., Bluhm, R., Williamson, P., Théberge, J., Densmore, M., & Neufeld, R. (2009) Brain activation to favorite music in healthy controls and depressed patients. Neuroreport, 20(13), 1204-1208. PMID: 19617860
Polston, J., & Glick, S. (2011) Music-induced context preference following cocaine conditioning in rats. Behavioral Neuroscience, 125(4), 674-680. PMID: 21688895
Sarkamo, T., Ripolles, P., Vepsalainen, H., Autti, T., Silvennoinen, H., Salli, E., Laitinen, S., Forsblom, A., Soinila, S., & Rodriguez-Fornells, A. (2014) Structural changes induced by daily music listening in the recovering brain after middle cerebral artery stroke: A voxel-based morphometry study. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 1-16. DOI: 10.3389/fnhum.2014.00245
In today's heated political stage, where everyone has a soapbox thanks to outlets like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and all the personal blogs, I've tried my best not to share my political views publicly. And I've miserably failed. I use my own Facebook page and profile to talk about science, books and photography, but then I can't resist browsing other people's posts. Most of my friends are not as shy as me about making their political views heard and that's when I fall into the trap: I comment........ Read more »
Nyhan, B., & Reifler, J. (2010) When Corrections Fail: The Persistence of Political Misperceptions. Political Behavior, 32(2), 303-330. DOI: 10.1007/s11109-010-9112-2
Perlovsky, L. (2013) A challenge to human evolution—cognitive dissonance. Frontiers in Psychology. DOI: 10.3389/fpsyg.2013.00179
"Erm, what is it, that thing that you do?"
This is the question that follows the eyebrow V, that follows my response to the question, “what are you doing your PhD on?”.
Music neuroscientists. I can tell you what we do not do.... Read more »
Rohrmeier, M., & Koelsch, S. (2012) Predictive information processing in music cognition. A critical review. International Journal of Psychophysiology, 83(2), 164-175. DOI: 10.1016/j.ijpsycho.2011.12.010
Kraus, N., & Chandrasekaran, B. (2010) Music training for the development of auditory skills. Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 11(8), 599-605. DOI: 10.1038/nrn2882
Traumatic brain injury (TBI), also known as intracranial injury, is a substantial head injury that results in damage to the brain. This damage can cause a wide spectrum of possible health outcomes. Factors that are likely to influence neuropsychiatric outcome in TBI can be classified as pre-injury, injury and post-injury factors. Injury-related factors include a) the type of physical injury
The post Neuropsychiatric Outcomes Of Traumatic Brain Injury appeared first on UBRF: UberBrain R........ Read more »
Arciniegas DB, Anderson CA, Topkoff J, & McAllister TW. (2005) Mild traumatic brain injury: a neuropsychiatric approach to diagnosis, evaluation, and treatment. Neuropsychiatric disease and treatment, 1(4), 311-27. PMID: 18568112
Bigler ED. (2001) Distinguished Neuropsychologist Award Lecture 1999. The lesion(s) in traumatic brain injury: implications for clinical neuropsychology. Archives of clinical neuropsychology : the official journal of the National Academy of Neuropsychologists, 16(2), 95-131. PMID: 14590180
Bigler ED. (2007) Anterior and middle cranial fossa in traumatic brain injury: relevant neuroanatomy and neuropathology in the study of neuropsychological outcome. Neuropsychology, 21(5), 515-31. PMID: 17784800
THE AMYGDALA SHOWN ALONG WITH OTHER LIMBIC SYSTEM STRUCTURES.
The amygdala---or, more appropriately, amygdalae, as there is one in each cerebral hemisphere---was not recognized as a distinct brain region until the 1800s, and it wasn't until the middle of the twentieth century that it began to be considered an especially significant area in mediating emotional responses. Specifics about the role of the amygdala in emotion remained somewhat unclear, however, ........ Read more »
LeDoux, Joseph. (2007) The Amygdala. Current Biology. info:/
Last week I had an animated discussion on Facebook over an older post in which I describe some literature I dug out on possible (underline “possible”!) correlations with autism. True, my post is highly incomplete, but it was meant as a discussion starter to point at things that scientists have been looking at in an attempt to unravel what feels like a rise in autism. Is autism the new childhood plague of our modern society or has it always been around and we just became more aware of it? And........ Read more »
Kushak RI, Buie TM, Murray KF, Newburg DS, Chen C, Nestoridi E, & Winter HS. (2016) Evaluation of Intestinal Function in Children with Autism and Gastrointestinal Symptoms. Journal of pediatric gastroenterology and nutrition. PMID: 26913756
Li, Q., & Zhou, J. (2016) The microbiota–gut–brain axis and its potential therapeutic role in autism spectrum disorder. Neuroscience. DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2016.03.013
Heijtz, R., Wang, S., Anuar, F., Qian, Y., Bjorkholm, B., Samuelsson, A., Hibberd, M., Forssberg, H., & Pettersson, S. (2011) Normal gut microbiota modulates brain development and behavior. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 108(7), 3047-3052. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1010529108
Mulle, J., Sharp, W., & Cubells, J. (2013) The Gut Microbiome: A New Frontier in Autism Research. Current Psychiatry Reports, 15(2). DOI: 10.1007/s11920-012-0337-0
While it may be difficult to imagine in a day and age when psychiatric medicines are advertised as a way to treat nearly every mental disorder, only 65 years ago targeted and effective psychiatric medicines were still just an unrealized aspiration. In fact, until the middle of the 20th century, the efficacy and safety of many common approaches to treating mental illness were highly questionable. For example, one method of treating schizophrenia that was common in the 1940s........ Read more »
López-Muñoz, F., Alamo, C., cuenca, E., Shen, W., Clervoy, P., & Rubio, G. (2005) History of the Discovery and Clinical Introduction of Chlorpromazine. Annals of Clinical Psychiatry, 17(3), 113-135. DOI: 10.1080/10401230591002002
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