Blog Profile / Brain Blogger

Filed Under:Academics / Neuroscience
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Archived Since:January 19, 2009

Blog Post Archive

Ketamine – More Than a Recreational Drug

Ketamine was first introduced in 1962. It was initially presented as a fast acting general anesthetic, being widely used as a battlefield anesthetic in the 1970s. Ketamine is considered a dissociative anesthetic – it creates an altered state of consciousness, distorting the perception of sound and vision, and producing a feeling of detachment from oneself […]

Can We Predict Which People Will Be Better At Learning Foreign Languages?

One common gripe we probably have when we observe that friend who can speak effortlessly in a dozen different tongues may be something along the lines of: “Why is he or she so good at learning languages – it’s not fair!” Well, now it appears that perhaps there is indeed some hidden advantage this friend […]

Making Decisions on a “Hangry” Impulse

“Hangry” is slang for that feeling of anger you may get when you’re hungry. It’s very common, in my experience… My friendly advice: don’t make any important decisions when you’re hungry. Why? Because you’re more likely to act on an impulse. And this is not just a personal conclusion: this was actually the main finding […]

Magic Mushrooms for Mental Health

Psychedelics are powerful substances that alter perception, mood, and cognition. Psychedelic use has been a part of human history for thousands of years – for both spiritual and recreational practices – and they have been the focus of intense debate. Now, psychedelic drugs – once the symbol of a 1960s subculture – are being evaluated […]

Best and Worst in Health and Healthcare – May 2016

May was full of promising news in glioblastoma research, one of the deadliest forms of brain cancer. But as usual, there were also not-so-good news, with the side-effects of drugs being on the spotlight. THE BEST Nanotechnology applied to glioma treatment Glioblastoma multiforme is a rare but highly lethal disease with no effective treatment options. […]

Best and Worst of Neuroscience and Neurology – May 2016

The last month, in my opinion, was particularly fruitful for new, interesting publications. In fact, I was struggling when deciding which of them to select for this review. Quite a few articles addressed fundamental questions about basic mechanisms of brain functioning, neurodegenerative diseases and evolution. Show More Summary

Looking Inside Our Heads – Brain Imaging and Patient Adherence

The ultimate goal of healthcare professionals is to achieve well-being in patients, which, as a matter of course usually requires patients’ adherence (also termed compliance) to prescribed therapies. Despite the best intentions and efforts...Show More Summary

Best and Worst of Psychology and Psychiatry – May 2016

At Brainblogger we publish monthly roundups of the most interesting findings in psychology and psychiatry research. For some reason or other, May was particularly packed full with studies producing important and actionable findings with regard to mental health and wellbeing, covering diverse populations, from metal heads to military personnel. Show More Summary

Glioblastoma – Can Gene Therapy Really Help?

Glioblastoma is one of the deadliest tumours, with very low survival rate and no efficient therapies available. The current gold standards of management, namely surgery, chemo- and radiotherapy, have little effectiveness since these tumours typically exhibit very aggressive recurrences within a short time frame. Show More Summary

Reading Emotions Through Computer Interfaces

Emotions have evolved in humans for the sole purpose of survival. We constantly scan our environment for dangers and chances to satisfy our fundamental needs. Our mind and bodies act in concert through our emotions. What we feel has become so integral to our lives that our perceptions, beliefs and even the initiative to take […]

Friends Are The Best Medicine

Primates have unusually large brains in relation to body size compared to all other vertebrates. The reason for this outstanding anatomical feature is broadly accepted to be the complex social interactions primates have developed. This theory is known as the “social brain hypothesis”, and, simply put, it postulates that the demands of sociality are responsible […]

The Phenomenon of Déjà Vu

Nearly two thirds of us have experienced déjà vu at least once in our lifetime. And the encounter is so uncanny, you won’t forget it. You visit your friend’s house for the first time. As you walk into the dining room, everything seems strangely familiar. The peculiar arrangement of the tables and chairs, the scent […]

Newfound Causes of Child Crime – Sleep Deprivation & Low Self-Control

Despite the great complexity and diversity in establishing the causes of juvenile delinquency, child crime cases are found to have many factors in common. New juvenile delinquency research suggests that kids getting poor sleep may be more likely to commit crimes and engage in violent behavior because of a lack of sleep promoting poor self-control. […]

Making the President Disappear – The Inattentional Barack Obama Blindness Illusion

A new research study published in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience demonstrates the phenomenal power of our expectations in shaping our perception of reality. So powerful in fact they can even make the face of one of the most famous men on Earth, the President of the United States, Barack Obama, seemingly disappear. Have you ever […]

Cyber Psychology Part II – Dealing With The Dark Minds of Internet Trolls

In a bid to develop tools to recognize and filter out trolling or other negative messages, research has been gradually developing strategies to detect and predict trolls, from use of poor punctuation and spelling to negative content. Delving deeper, scientific research is providing a glimpse into the psyche of the elusive cyber beast known as […]

Nurturing The Brain – Part 9, Blueberries

Astronauts on space missions can be exposed to radiation for long periods of time, which can pose significant dangers to their health. The fact that the administration of blueberry extract has been proposed as a preventive therapy to protect them from harmful radiation is a great indication of just how powerful these fruits might be. […]

A Resident’s Reflections from within the American Board of Psychiatry & Neurology (ABPN)

Most residents have a very limited understanding of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology (ABPN), and understandably so. I myself thought of the ABPN as a large, bureaucratic, governmental organization that spent most of its time siphoning money from hapless residents in order to administer board certification examinations. I was therefore surprised, and a […]

Neurofeedback Therapy for The Management of Pain

Pain is a subjective feeling that can be influenced by sensory, affective, and cognitive factors. Chronic pain can have a widespread impact on overall brain function, and both cognitive and psychological factors play key roles in the development and management of pain. Patients with long-term pain often present structural and emotional impairments associated with cortical […]

Brainwaves – A New Type of Fingerprint?

Studying the electrical activity of the brain has revealed one amazing thing: our brainwaves are individualized and unique. Changes in brain activity under different mental states can be studied with a number of methods, and the information obtained can then be used to identify features of users. More specifically, recording of brain activity can be […]

How LSD Changes The Way Our Brains Work

In 1938, Swiss chemist Albert Hofmann synthesized a derivative of alkaloid ergotamine, a natural compound found in a parasitic fungus called ergot. He had no way of knowing that as little as 20 micrograms of this substance would cause a psychedelic effect! Back in the first half of the 20th century, there were not many […]

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