Blog Profile / Brain Blogger

Filed Under:Academics / Neuroscience
Posts on Regator:809
Posts / Week:2.3
Archived Since:January 19, 2009

Blog Post Archive

The Placebo Effect – Beyond Analgesia

Placebos are drugs or other sources of treatment that are physically and pharmacologically inert, without any direct therapeutic effects. The neurobiological mechanisms of the placebo effect remain a matter of great research interest. Show More Summary

How Do We Choose Our Political Leaders?

Wherever you might live in the world, you know what it’s like when it’s election time. The airwaves and the billboards are taken over by the electoral candidates. Your mailbox is flooded with brochures and mailers every other day while the newspapers ignore most events other than those related to the elections and the candidates. […]

The Most Popular Psychiatric Drugs Alter Decisions to Cause Harm

Citalopram (Celexa®) and levodopa (Larodopa®), considered to be the most commonly prescribed antidepressant and Parkinson’s drug respectively, have been shown in a new study to alter how healthy individuals make moral decisions to harm both oneself and other people. Show More Summary

Best and Worst in Psychology and Psychiatry — June 2015

While reviewing the thousands of studies published in psychology and psychiatry this June 2015 a clearly dominant theme emerged — it’s all about the kids! From treating mental illness and problems with child development, to understanding both child and parent thinking and behavior, school might be out, but child psychology takes center stage in this […]

Best And Worst of Health and Healthcare – June 2015

June has brought us some interesting findings: new therapeutic targets and drugs, tips on how to prevent cognitive decline, and great technological innovations. But it also brought us some bad news. I share the best and worst news with which I came across in June. These are personal opinions, presented in no particular order and […]

Best and Worst of Neuroscience and Neurology – June 2015

Significant numbers of interesting findings in both theoretical neurobiology and in more practical applications aimed at studying various brain conditions and diseases have been published this month. Choosing the most interesting articles to include in this monthly review is a highly subjective exercise. Show More Summary

Never Say Die – SELF/LESS from Science-Fiction to -Fact

In SELF/LESS, a dying old man (Academy Award winner Ben Kingsley) transfers his consciousness to the body of a healthy young man (Ryan Reynolds). If you’re into immortality, that’s pretty good product placement, no?

Can Madness Save the World?

Over the years of my explorations into psychosis and human evolution, a very interesting irony became increasingly apparent. It is well known that people who fall into those deeply transformative and chaotic states typically referred to as “psychosis” often feel at different points throughout their journeys that they have received a special calling to save […]

All You Need Is Love?

Freud stated that one component of happiness is love. Correspondingly, one aspect of wellbeing is appropriate emotional attachment. Relationships, especially when they reflect the needs of the mentally ill individual, can counteract the problems of alienation and a lack of relational success, which typify mental illness, to a significant extent. Essential to success in the […]

Forgetting Names? Go to Sleep!

Can’t remember where you keep things? Seem to forget names and appointments more often than before? Don’t blame your failing memory on age. It is more likely that you are not getting your quota of beauty sleep. In an age of distractions (read: smartphone, social media, and TV) and trying to get too many things […]

Stigma Towards Mental Health Stigma Impacts Vocation

Freud stated that the components of happiness are love and work. Yet, it’s interesting that people in our society tend to accept, almost unconsciously, the idea that mentally ill people are not suitable for either of these activities. This idea seems to pervade, especially in the minds of people who adhere to conventional modes of […]

School Bullying – Forgive, Ignore or Revenge?

Giving your child the best advice when they are being bullied is a challenge for many parents. While some parents sign their kids up for kickboxing or karate lessons in a bid to boost confidence and give them the tools to fight back; others strive for non-physical resolutions such as ignoring and avoiding bullies; and […]

Crisis of Masculinity

Is he man enough for the challenge? Do you have your man pants on? Man up or go home! These kind of very sexist phrases are an inherent part of many of our day-to-day language. While mainstream society is moving towards redefining our collective definition of what femininity means, what about masculinity? Do men feel […]

The Neurology of Anxiety in Times of Critical Decision-Making

Scientists have identified the specific neural circuitry that triggers anxiety in individuals when confronted with critical decisions. Our brains can actually gauge how critical a decision is and trigger anxiety in us accordingly! Do you freak out when you have to decide if you want to order pizza or a tub of fried chicken for […]

The Causes Of Alzheimer’s Disease – An Overview

Dementia is characterized by a progressive and debilitating decline in cognition, function and behavior. Its numbers are staggering: according to the World Health Organization, the total number of people with dementia worldwide in 2010 was estimated at 35.6 million and predicted to nearly double every 20 years, to 65.7 million in 2030 and 115.4 million […]

Sex Bias In Autism Spectrum Disorders – Is It Real?

An intriguing observation in the epidemiology of autism is the marked sex bias in its prevalence, with a commonly reported ratio of five males to one female. Age of diagnosis also differs between males and females, being on average later in the latter. Despite the consistent documentation of such a difference, there is a surprisingly […]

Neuronal Transplantation May Restore Brain Functionality

Artificial limbs let receivers lead more productive and fulfilling lives. Organ transplantations give new life to people. Science has advanced so far that it can even tinker with the workings of the brain to explore ways in which lost brain functions can be revived. Experiments are already underway to determine if neuronal transplantation can replace […]

Disruptive Intelligent Machines

Intelligent machines are very likely to become as popular as smartphones. Still, the intelligence of a machine remains a debatable term and the first examples are as yet incipient prototypes. In truth it is difficult to conceive a technology more disruptive than truly intelligent machines. In some years “intelligent personal assistants” such as Siri and […]

Do Insects Have Emotions and Empathy?

A recent survey suggests that for most of us that have ever had a pet companion, it’s a no-brainer that mammals and birds are emotional creatures, sharing emotions with multiple species and not just their own. Yet despite the thousands of YouTube videos and hundreds of recent scientific studies presenting easily accessible evidence and examples, […]

Top 5 Persuasion Techniques of 2015

The art of persuasion really is an art form. It’s not always easy to get everyone on board and ready to comply – we are stubborn beings us humans. From kids refusing bath-time and shy friends avoiding going out, to simple requests to your other half going in one ear and out the other and […]

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