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For “Super Agers,” Bodies Age As Brains Stay Young

For “Super Agers,” Bodies Age As Brains Stay Young

Early research on the sharpest octogenarians reveals unusually youthful brain regions This is a guest post in our #NPGsfn11 blog series and posted on behalf of Sandra Upson and is cross-posted at Scientific American’s Observations blog. A nasty affliction sets into humans as they advance in years. The hair either disappears or thins into a fuzzy halo, the skin sags and bunches, while inside the brain, changes set in that slow our reaction times and cause our memories to fade. A steady, widespread thinning out of the brain’s cortex, the outermost layer of the brain, is thought to underlie some  … Read more

I Am Judging You While You Wait To Buy Coffee

This is a guest post in our #NPGsfn11 blog series and posted on behalf of Dr. Becca. There may be no better spot for people watching in all of the convention center than the leather sofa that faces the Starbucks line, and that is exactly where I am sitting. It’s perfect—I’ve got a constant stream of people going by, but that stream is slow-moving enough that my not-fully caffeinated brain is actually able to make an observation or two. One thought that occurs to me: with a few highly-notable exceptions, SfN-goers appear to be better-dressed this year than last. But  … Read more

Where Do Your Fears Lie?

This is a guest post in our #NPGsfn11 blog series and posted on behalf of Tara LeGates. It is something we have all experienced and the memories it produces are some of the strongest and longest-lasting we know. Fear is evolutionarily-conserved and significantly influences behavior in response to danger. However, chronic fear, or fear elicited by non-threatening cues, is maladaptive and the hallmark of several disorders such as anxiety, phobias, and posttramatic stress disorder. Knowledge of the circuitry underlying fear will hopefully assist in the understanding and treatment of these types of disorders. Andreas Lüthi presented some of his eloquent  … Read more

SfN Is My Nerd Disneyland

This is a guest post in our #NPGsfn11 blog series and posted on behalf of Bradley Voytek. Meet the electric brain. A pinnacle of modern science! This marvel comes complete with a “centrencephalic system”, eyes, ears, medial and lateral geniculate, corpora quadrigemina, and visual cortex. (click to enlarge) The text reads: A giant electrified model of the human brain’s control system is demonstrated by Dr. A.G. Macleod, at the meeting of the American Medical Association in New York, on June 26, 1961. The maze of twisting tubes and blinking lights traces the way the brain receives information and turns it  … Read more