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Study: Young children can discriminate genuine from fake smiles A genuine smile is a universally acknowledged sign of honesty and moral intention.  Therefore, it is of evolutionary importance that humans have the ability to recognise a genuine smile during social interactions. According to the Facial Action Coding System (FACS) there are two muscle groups involved in the formation of a genuine smile. Action Unit [...]
Hard choices? Ask your brain’s dopamine Say you’re reaching for the fruit cup at a buffet, but at the last second you switch gears and grab a cupcake instead. Emotionally, your decision is a complex stew of guilt and mouth-watering anticipation. But physically it’s a simple shift: instead of moving left, your hand went right. Such split-second changes interest neuroscientists because [...]
7 Ways to Take Action Against Your Biggest Challenges These could be very good times. We might look back from the future and tell stories about how people of all ages, and race, and belief systems gathered to create new ways of living in a sustainable way on this planet. That against all of … ...
Researchers discover an unexpected link between cancer and autism The researchers from Turku Centre for Biotechnology discovered an unexpected link between cancer and autism Researchers from Turku Centre for Biotechnology have observed that a protein called SHANK prevents the spread of breast cancer cells to the surrounding tissue. The SHANK protein has been previously studied only in the central nervous system, and it is [...]
Dopamine neurons factor ambiguity into predictions enabling us to ‘win big and win often’ In the struggle of life, evolution rewards animals that master their circumstances, especially when the environment changes fast. If there is a recipe for success, it is not: savor your victories when you are fortunate to have them. Rather it is: win big, and win often. To make winning decisions, animals cannot consult a hard-wired [...]
Brain hardwired to respond to others’ itching Some behaviors — yawning and scratching, for example — are socially contagious, meaning if one person does it, others are likely to follow suit. Now, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have found that socially contagious itching is hardwired in the brain. Studying mice, the scientists have identified what occurs in [...]
Researchers discover how neurons tell each other to die under trauma, disease A major contributor to most neurological diseases is the degeneration of a wire-like part of nerve cells called an axon, which electrically transmits information from one neuron to another. The molecular programs underlying axon degeneration are therefore important targets for therapeutic intervention – the idea being that if axons can be preserved, rather than allowed [...]
Female pessimism about pay could sustain the gender pay gap Efforts to end the gender pay gap could be thwarted by the tendency for women to be pessimistic about their earning potential, shows new research from the University of Bath. The study finds that women underestimate their earnings prospects, leading to lower expectations and little inclination to push for higher wages or promotion, or seek [...]
Study indicates gene linked to serotonin influences social phobia People with social anxiety avoid situations in which they are exposed to judgment by others. Those affected also lead a withdrawn life and maintain contact above all on the Internet. Around one in ten people is affected by this anxiety disorder over the course of their life. Researchers at the University of Bonn have now [...]
Six ways to manage social anxiety It’s the thumping heart, the sweaty palms, and the seeming inability to communicate verbally to the person across from you. It’s the fear that everyone is silently judging you, and if you make eye contact with them something disastrous could happen. And it’s the isolation you feel it an overwhelmingly crowded place, when the smallest […]
Optimized sensors to study learning and memory in neurons Learning and memory are crucial aspects of everyday life. When we learn, our neurons use chemical and molecular signals to change their shapes and strengthen connections between neurons, a process known as synaptic plasticity. In Ryohei Yasuda’s lab at Max Planck Florida Institute for Neuroscience (MPFI), scientists are working to understand how these molecules send [...]
Conformity is not a universal indicator of intelligence in children, study says Because innovation is part of the American culture, adults in the United States may be less likely to associate children’s conformity with intelligence than adults from other populations, according to research from developmental psychologists at The University of Texas at Austin. U.S. children are often encouraged to engage in non-conformist and creative behavior. But researchers [...]
Harnessing ADHD for business success: Impulsivity materializes in entrepreneurial action The symptoms of ADHD foster important traits associated with entrepreneurship. That conclusion was reached in a study conducted by an international team of economists, who found that entrepreneurs with ADHD embrace new experiences and demonstrate passion and persistence. Their intuitive decision making in situations involving uncertainty was seen by the researchers as a reason for [...]
Are You a Morning or an Evening Person? While circadian preferences can change over the course of our lifespan, it is important to recognise how important morningness and eveningness can be in how we think and behave.
3 Conditions That Boost Your Odds of Aha! Insights When you have a problem that requires a creative solution, do you spend hours trying to find it? Do you fixate on the dilemma, trying to pick apart the details like … ...
Balance and Moderation We take it for granted that balance is a good thing. Who doesn’t want a balanced life, a balanced diet, and so on? Yet balance and moderation are things that … ...
Brain is 10 times more active than previously measured, researchers find A new study could change scientists' understanding of how the brain works -- and could lead to new approaches for treating neurological disorders and for developing computers that 'think' more like humans.
Dopamine neurons factor ambiguity into predictions enabling us to 'win big and win often' In the struggle of life, evolution rewards animals that master their circumstances, especially when the environment changes. The recipe for success is: win big, and win often. Success depends on the ability to learn. Researchers describe how dopamine-releasing neurons, which produce teaching signals for the brain, weigh the ambiguity of sensory information when they assess how successfully past experiences have guided a new decision. These neurons are even more sophisticated than previously thought.
Hard choices? Ask your brain's dopamine Researchers have learned how dopamine governs ongoing decisions, yielding insights into Parkinson's, drug addiction.
How big brains evolved could be revealed by new mathematical model A new mathematical model could help clarify what drove the evolution of large brains in humans and other animals, according to a study.