brain plasticity

12/09/2013 - 21:13

To learn new motor skills, the brain must be plastic: able to rapidly change the strengths of connections between neurons, forming new patterns that accomplish a particular task. However, if the brain were too plastic, previously learned skills would be lost too easily.

 

07/16/2012 - 18:52

Can you teach an old dog (or human) new tricks? Yes, but it might take time, practice, and hard work before he or she gets it right, according to Hans Schroder and colleagues from Michigan State University in the US. Their work shows that when rules change, our attempts to control our actions are accompanied by a loss of attention to detail.

05/09/2012 - 15:24

Chronic exposure to cocaine reduces the expression of a protein known to regulate brain plasticity, according to new, in vivo research on the molecular basis of cocaine addiction. That reduction drives structural changes in the brain, which produce greater sensitivity to the rewarding effects of cocaine.

04/26/2012 - 09:56

They say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks. Fortunately, this is not always true. Researchers at the Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience (NIN-KNAW) have now discovered how the adult brain can adapt to new situations. The Dutch researchers’ findings are published on Wednesday in the prestigious journal 'Neuron'. Their study may be significant in the treatment of neurodevelopmental disorders such as epilepsy, autism and schizophrenia.

02/28/2012 - 08:02

 During depression, the brain becomes less plastic and adaptable, and thus less able to perform certain tasks, like storing memories. Researchers at Karolinska Institutet have now traced the brain's lower plasticity to reduced functionality in its support cells, and believe that learning more about these cells can pave the way for radical new therapies for depression.

02/10/2012 - 09:54

Synaptic plasticity – the ability of the synaptic connections between the brain’s neurons to change and modify over time -- has been shown to be a key to memory formation and the acquisition of new learning behaviors. Now research led by a scientific team at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) reveals that the neural circuits controlling hunger and eating behaviors are also controlled by plasticity.