Category archives: Neuroscience

Mapping how the 100 billion cells in the brain all fit together is the brave new world of neuroscience

Mapping how the 100 billion cells in the brain all fit together is the brave new world of neuroscience

Neuroscience

By Invited Researcher

The brain plays an essential role in how people navigate the world by generating both thought and behavior. Despite being one of the most vital organs of life, it takes up only 2% of human body volume. How can something so small perform such complex tasks? Luckily, modern tools like brain mapping have allowed neuroscientists […]

Increased density of synapses in autism spectrum disorders

Increased density of synapses in autism spectrum disorders

NeurobiologyNeuroscience

By José Ramón Alonso

At a synapse, the plasma membrane of the neuron transmitting the information (the presynaptic neuron) is in close proximity to the membrane of the target cell (postsynaptic) and the two are separated by a space known as the synaptic cleft. Both the presynaptic and postsynaptic sites contain extensive assemblies of molecular machinery that link the […]

Can consciousness be explained by quantum physics? My research takes us a step closer to finding out

Can consciousness be explained by quantum physics? My research takes us a step closer to finding out

NeurosciencePhysics

By Invited Researcher

One of the most important open questions in science is how our consciousness is established. In the 1990s, long before winning the 2020 Nobel Prize in Physics for his prediction of black holes, physicist Roger Penrose teamed up with anaesthesiologist Stuart Hameroff to propose an ambitious answer. They claimed that the brain’s neuronal system forms […]

Earworms revisited

Earworms revisited

NeurosciencePsychology

By José Ramón Alonso

An earworm is a melody that arises spontaneously in the mind, perhaps after having heard it only once, and gets “stuck” in the head for hours or days. It is also called brainworm, catchy music, repetition of musical images, involuntary musical imagery and stuck song syndrome. We may come to feel that the tune is […]

Hungry lonely brains

Hungry lonely brains

Neuroscience

By Rosa García-Verdugo

When hungry, not only our bodies long for food, our brains do too. And it appears that when it comes to social interaction, a similar thing happens. Social deprivation leads to a brain angry for social contact. A recent study [Livia Tomova et al (2020) Acute social isolation evokes midbrain craving responses similar to hunger […]

IQ tests can’t measure it, but ‘cognitive flexibility’ is key to learning and creativity

IQ tests can’t measure it, but ‘cognitive flexibility’ is key to learning and creativity

NeurosciencePsychology

By Invited Researcher

IQ is often hailed as a crucial driver of success, particularly in fields such as science, innovation and technology. In fact, many people have an endless fascination with the IQ scores of famous people. But the truth is that some of the greatest achievements by our species have primarily relied on qualities such as creativity […]