Pathological signatures: Autism, schizophrenia share gene activity in brain

Pathological signatures: Autism, schizophrenia share gene activity in brain

Researchers have found that certain psychiatric disorders like autism, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder share some physical characteristics at the molecular level, specifically, patterns of gene expression in the brain. The findings, published in the journal Science, raise hope for better diagnosis and therapies for people with major psychiatric disorders. “These findings provide a molecular, pathological signature of these disorders, which is a large step forward,” said senior study author Daniel Geschwind, Professor at the University of California, Los Angeles. “The major challenge now is to understand how these changes arose,”…

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Do you feel sleepy after lunch? Here’s what happens to your brain in a sugar coma

Do you feel sleepy after lunch? Here’s what happens to your brain in a sugar coma

Do you feel a little sluggish after eating sugar or a big meal? You are probably feeling the effects of a sugar crash, which may slow down your brain function, a study suggests. In the study, participants demonstrated reduced attention and response times after consuming glucose or table sugar, compared to those who consumed fructose (fruit sugar) or artificial sweetener sucralose (the placebo). “Our study suggests that the ‘sugar coma’ – with regards to glucose – is indeed a real phenomenon, where levels of attention seem to decline after consumption…

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Brain Activity and Good Diet May Prevent Insomnia-Related Depression

Brain Activity and Good Diet May Prevent Insomnia-Related Depression

al feedback as well as reinforce behaviours that are rewarded, while reducing behaviours that are not. The results showed that those who were less susceptible to the effects of poor sleep showed significantly higher brain activity in response to positive feedback or reward compared to negative feedback. The effects of poor sleep showed significantly higher brain activity “Poor sleep is not good, but you may have other experiences during your life that are positive. And the more responsive you are to those positive experiences, the less vulnerable you may be…

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Brain Activity and Good Diet May Prevent Insomnia-Related Depression

Brain Activity and Good Diet May Prevent Insomnia-Related Depression

While lack of sleep is a major risk factor for depression, not everyone who tosses and turns at night becomes depressed. According to a study, individuals whose brains are more attuned to rewards may be protected from the negative mental health effects of poor sleep. The findings revealed that students with poor quality sleep were less likely to have symptoms of depression if they also had higher activity in a reward-sensitive region of the brain. “This helps us begin to understand why some people are more likely to experience depression when they have problems…

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Hate going to the gym? Just 25 min of yoga can boost energy levels and brain function

Hate going to the gym? Just 25 min of yoga can boost energy levels and brain function

Meditating and practising yoga have numerous health benefits. They can boost your body and mind, and even ‘reverse’ stress-causing DNA. A new study suggests that just 25 minutes of hatha yoga and mindfulness meditation every day can significantly improve brain function and energy levels. It can boost the brain’s executive functions, cognitive abilities linked to goal-directed behaviour and the ability to control knee-jerk emotional responses, habitual thinking patterns and actions. Researcher Peter Hall from the University Of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada said that hatha yoga and mindfulness meditation both focus the brain’s…

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How books, toys and learning activities at home can boost your child’s brain power

How books, toys and learning activities at home can boost your child’s brain power

Learning activities at home in the early years of a kid’s life make an important difference to their achievement in school, a recent study has found. The study by NYU’s Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development suggested that children, whose parents provide them with learning materials like books and toys and engage them in learning activities and meaningful conversations in infancy and toddlerhood, are likely to develop early cognitive skills that can cascade into later academic success. The study followed a group of children from birth through 5th grade to…

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Hiking boosts brain power

Hiking boosts brain power

You knew walking is good—it burns calories; it relaxes you out. But did you know that walking in nature does wonders to your mind too? We have science backing it now. Studies have suggested that hiking in nature improves brain function, makes you more creative and focused. Those who take regular walks in the wilderness are not only less prone to mental health issues but they are also better at problem-solving and creativity. Need any more reasons to take that trek? Promotes creativity The everyday noise, the hustle bustle and stress take…

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Depression may alter brain structure

Depression may alter brain structure

An individual suffering from depression may be at an increased risk of developing changes in the structure of the brain associated with communication and thinking skills, researchers say. The findings showed that alterations were found in parts of the brain known as white matter, which contains fibre tracts that enable brain cells to communicate with one another by electrical signals. White matter is a key component of the brain’s wiring and its disruption has been linked to problems with emotion processing and thinking skills, the researchers said. Further, people with…

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US doctors reverse brain damage in drowned toddler

US doctors reverse brain damage in drowned toddler

Doctors in the US have successfully reversed brain damage in a two-year-old who became unresponsive to all stimuli after a drowning accident. The girl experienced cardiac arrest after a cold water drowning accident in a swimming pool. After resuscitation at Arkansas Children’s Hospital in the US, MRI revealed deep brain injury as well as grey and white matter loss. She had no speech, gait or responsiveness to commands, and was constantly squirming and shaking her head. Since hyperbaric oxygen therapy was not available in the patient’s location, doctors at Louisiana…

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5 Incredible Cauliflower Benefits: From Reducing Cancer Risks to Brain Health

5 Incredible Cauliflower Benefits: From Reducing Cancer Risks to Brain Health

Have you ever wondered what the majestically shaped, intricately folded, off-white looking member of the cruciferous family of vegetables – cauliflower – entails? The stake it holds in the upkeep of parameters of the human body? It would not be incorrect to assume that the countless curves and folds in the body of the cauliflower plant exhibits those countless benefits for health and well-being. It originates from the brassica species. Commonly known as cabbage, that’s where the etymology of the term lies. It’s mainly the upper white part, also known as curd, which is edible….

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