Brain

Two of the world's worst natural disasters in recent years stemmed from different causes on opposite sides of the globe, but actually had much in common, according to researchers who are part of a large National Science Foundation-funded research initiative that has been studying both the Indian Ocean Tsunami of 2004 and the Hurricane Katrina of 2005.As a storm surge recedes, the sudden decrease in downward pressure on the saturated soil causes the sand to liquefy and to flow out like a heavy slurry.

The two most prevalent forms of genetic mental retardation, Fragile X and Down syndromes, may share a common cause, according to researchers at Stanford University School of Medicine. The problem, a crippled communication network in the brain, may also be associated with autism.

Scientists have known for more than a decade that individuals with a certain gene are at higher risk for developing Alzheimer's disease. Now a new study helps explain why this is so.

The research, led by scientists at the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation (OMRF), has uncovered a molecular mechanism that links the susceptibility gene to the process of Alzheimer's disease onset. The findings appear in the April 11 issue of The Journal of Neuroscience and may lead to new pathways for development of Alzheimer's therapeutics.

A study of how the brain of a premature infant responds to injury has found vulnerabilities similar to those in the mature brain but also identified at least one significant difference, according to neuroscientists and neonatologists at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

For the first time, scientists from the University of Washington School of Medicine, Indiana University Bloomington and the University of Cambridge have determined how a plant hormone -- auxin -- interacts with its hormone receptor, called TIR1. Their report, on the cover of this week's issue of Nature, also may have important implications for the treatment of human disease, because TIR1 is similar to human enzymes that are known to be involved in cancer.

Flexible electronic membranes may overcome a longstanding dilemma faced by brain researchers: How to replicate injuries in the lab without destroying the electrodes that monitor how brain cells respond to physical trauma.

University of Cincinnati (UC) neuroradiologists believe a brain imaging approach that combines standard magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans with specialized contrast-enhanced techniques could lead to more effective diagnoses in patients with difficult-to-detect blood clots in veins of the brain.

University of Cincinnati (UC) neuroradiologists believe a brain imaging approach that combines standard magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans with specialized contrast-enhanced techniques could lead to more effective diagnoses in patients with difficult-to-detect blood clots in veins of the brain.

An international team led by researchers from the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), has identified a genetic variant that is a major contributor to small size in dogs. The findings appear in the April 6, 2007 issue of the journal Science.

Will you lose weight and keep it off if you diet? No, probably not, UCLA researchers report in the April issue of American Psychologist, the journal of the American Psychological Association.