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Mind alteration device makes flies sing and dance In a joint effort with collaboration partners from the Vienna University of Technology and a lab in the USA, the team of Andrew Straw at the IMP developed a special device for the thermogenetic control of flies. This tool, called FlyMAD, enabled the scientists to target light or heat to specific body regions of flies
Religion had a much greater influence on welfare states than has previously been known According to a new study from the Cluster of Excellence “Religion and Politics”, religious communities had a much greater influence on the formation of European welfare states than has previously been known. “Particularly in countries like Germany and the Netherlands, in which the state and the churches as well as the denominations were competing against
Cannabis effects on PTSD: Can smoking medical marijuana reduce symptoms? Clinical research from New Mexico supports a conclusion that smoking cannabis is associated with PTSD symptom reduction in some patients. The study, published in the newest special issue of Journal of Psychoactive Drugs, was mentioned in a presentation on the topic of medical marijuana to the New Mexico Legislative Health & Human Services Committee last November,
Asperger’s is an unlikely cause for California killer’s violence By Elizabeth Laugeson, University of California, Los Angeles The news that Elliot Rodger, the 22-year-old confirmed by police as a suspect in the violent rampage which left seven people dead and 13 injured in Isla Vista, southern California, had Asperger’s Disorder – a form of autism – has raised questions about whether the condition was
Patrick Stewart, Trauma and Creative Work Most of us experience some kind of trauma in life. How does it impact creative people, and how can creative expression help? Acclaimed actor Patrick Stewart is one of many artists who have been deeply impacted by trauma in early life. An interview article notes he “was for decades a...
Who Do You Think You Are? A single text message from my brother nearly sent me into an identity crisis. He was trying to persuade me to sign up for an extreme sports event which includes running up steep hills, wading through mud, scaling walls … getting mildly electrocuted. If you haven’t heard of this and...
Mental break Dear reader, I am going to take a week off blogging here. I need a mental break. Last week was very stressful and I need some time to relax and reflect. I am with my parents for the week. I plan to return to you next Sunday. Thanks for understanding....
Entangled conorwithonen via Compfight The years have gone by, and slowly my sanity has returned. Therapy helped. Anti-depressants helped. Grandchildren have helped—immensely! Danny, the most rebellious in his leave-taking, now lives the closest to us, only an hour and a half away. Aaron, who lived at home the longest, now lives...
Promising approach to slow brain degeneration in a model of Huntington’s disease uncovered Research presented by Dr. Lynn Raymond, from the University of British Columbia, shows that blocking a specific class of glutamate receptors, called extrasynaptic NMDA receptors, can improve motor learning and coordination, and prevent cell death in animal models of Huntington disease. As Huntington disease is an inherited condition that can be detected decades before any
Sound and vision: Visual cortex processes auditory information too Scientists studying brain process involved in sight have found the visual cortex also uses information gleaned from the ears as well as the eyes when viewing the world. They suggest this auditory input enables the visual system to predict incoming information and could confer a survival advantage. Professor Lars Muckli, of the Institute of Neuroscience
Sex-specific changes in cerebral blood flow begin at puberty Puberty is the defining process of adolescent development, beginning a cascade of changes throughout the body, including the brain. Penn Medicine researchers have discovered that cerebral blood flow (CBF) levels decreased similarly in males and females before puberty, but saw them diverge sharply in puberty, with levels increasing in females while decreasing further in males,
The Awkward Place between Conventional & Alternative Medicine I’m hanging out on some rough terrain between conventional and alternative medicine, not sure if dabbling in both simultaneously is allowed. I can feel the tension between them as real as I did between my parents during their hostile divorce when I was 11. Traditional medicine says that we just...
How to turn any enemy into a friend Cut the enemy smack-talk, says one expert; it's unhelpful to harbor negativity.
Anxious parents can learn how to reduce anxiety in their kids Some children are more vulnerable to anxiety because of the way their anxious parents "parent."
Little children and already acting mean Special programs in elementary schools teach empathy as a means of stemming relational aggression, a psychological term to describe using the threat of removing friendship as a tactical weapon.
Debate over gun control, mental health starts anew A growing list of mass killings highlight the complicated intersection of mental illness and access to guns.
How to Help Your Caregiver This piece covers several ways in which you can ease your caregiver’s burden. It focuses on caregivers who are partners but, unless the care-for-one is a child, these suggestions can be used to help other caregivers, such as your children, parents, or siblings.
Going for the Real Gold! “Even if you should own a gold mine, you still have to dig.” Linda: My friend Michael told me that his Bubbie (grandmother) shared this bit of wisdom with him about fifty years ago, and he has never forgotten it. His digging efforts have paid off in ways that he...
Tim Murphy Doesn’t Miss a Beat Turning Tragedy Into One of the disgusting fall-outs from the Santa Barbara tragedy on Friday is Rep. Tim Murphy’s opportunism to promote his regressive, forced-treatment House bill. He says he’s angry by Friday’s tragedy, where a lonely, narcissistic, shy person by the name of Elliot Rodger decided he was going to take out...
Malignant Resentment: A Volatile Fuel for Violence When police spoke with Elliot Rodger on April 30, they saw nothing to suspect that he might commit a mass murder just a few weeks later. But why did anyone think cops could clinically assess a secretive loner intent on a self-satisfying act of retribution?