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Nature neuroscience

Barbara Schildkrout
A new nosology for mental disorders is needed as a basis for effective scientific inquiry. Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders and International Classification of Diseases diagnoses are not natural, biological categories, and these diagnostic systems do not address mental phenomena that exist on a spectrum. Advances in neuroscience offer the hope of breakthroughs for diagnosing and treating major mental illness in the future. At present, a neuroscience-based understanding of brain/behavior relationships can reshape clinical thinking...
October 2016: Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease
Tyler A Johnson, Laura Milan-Lobo, Tao Che, Madeline Ferwerda, Eptisam Lambo, Nicole L McIntosh, Fei Li, Li He, Nicholas Lorig-Roach, Phillip Crews, Jennifer Lynne Whistler
Opioid therapeutics are excellent analgesics, whose utility is compromised by dependence. Morphine (1) and its clinically relevant derivatives such as OxyContin® (4), Vicodin® (5) and Dilaudid® (6) are "biased" agonists at the µ opioid receptor (OR), wherein they engage G-protein signaling but poorly engage β-arrestin and the endocytic machinery. In contrast, the endorphins, met-enkephalin (14) and β-endorphin (15), endogenous peptide agonists for ORs, are more potent analgesics then 1, show reduced liability for tolerance and dependence, and engage both G-protein and β-arrestin pathways as "balanced" agonists...
October 17, 2016: ACS Chemical Neuroscience
Bethany Lusch, Pedro D Maia, J Nathan Kutz
Determining the interactions and causal relationships between nodes in an unknown networked dynamical system from measurement data alone is a challenging, contemporary task across the physical, biological, and engineering sciences. Statistical methods, such as the increasingly popular Granger causality, are being broadly applied for data-driven discovery of connectivity in fields from economics to neuroscience. A common version of the algorithm is called pairwise-conditional Granger causality, which we systematically test on data generated from a nonlinear model with known causal network structure...
September 2016: Physical Review. E
Jeff Walker, Jason MacLean, Nicholas G Hatsopoulos
The common marmoset has recently gained interest as an animal model for systems and behavioral neuroscience. This is due in part to the advent of transgenic marmosets, which affords the possibility of combining genetic manipulations with physiological recording and behavioral monitoring to study neural systems. In this review, we will argue that the marmoset provides a unique opportunity to study the neural basis of voluntary motor control from an integrative perspective. First, as an intermediate animal model, the marmoset represents an important bridge in motor system function between other primates, including humans, and rodents...
October 14, 2016: Developmental Neurobiology
E Carlino, A Piedimonte, F Benedetti
Placebos have long been considered a nuisance in clinical research, for they have always been used as comparators for the validation of new treatments. By contrast, today they represent an active field of research, and, due to the involvement of many mechanisms, the study of the placebo effect can actually be viewed as a melting pot of concepts and ideas for neuroscience. There is not a single placebo effect, but many, with different mechanisms across different medical conditions and therapeutic interventions...
2017: Handbook of Clinical Neurology
Nicola Schiel, Antonio Souto
Callithrix jacchus are small-bodied Neotropical primates popularly known as common marmosets. They are endemic to Northeast Brazil and occur in contrasting environments such as the humid Atlantic Forest and the dry scrub forest of the Caatinga. Common marmosets live in social groups, usually containing only one breeding pair. These primates have a parental care system in which individuals help by providing assistance to the infants even when they are not related to them. Free-ranging groups use relatively small home ranges (0...
October 5, 2016: Developmental Neurobiology
Jesper Tegnér, Hector Zenil, Narsis A Kiani, Gordon Ball, David Gomez-Cabrero
Systems in nature capable of collective behaviour are nonlinear, operating across several scales. Yet our ability to account for their collective dynamics differs in physics, chemistry and biology. Here, we briefly review the similarities and differences between mathematical modelling of adaptive living systems versus physico-chemical systems. We find that physics-based chemistry modelling and computational neuroscience have a shared interest in developing techniques for model reductions aiming at the identification of a reduced subsystem or slow manifold, capturing the effective dynamics...
November 13, 2016: Philosophical Transactions. Series A, Mathematical, Physical, and Engineering Sciences
Simona Ferrante, Noelia Chia Bejarano, Emilia Ambrosini, Antonio Nardone, Anna M Turcato, Marco Monticone, Giancarlo Ferrigno, Alessandra Pedrocchi
It has been largely suggested in neuroscience literature that to generate a vast variety of movements, the Central Nervous System (CNS) recruits a reduced set of coordinated patterns of muscle activities, defined as muscle synergies. Recent neurophysiological studies have recommended the analysis of muscle synergies to finely assess the patient's impairment, to design personalized interventions based on the specific nature of the impairment, and to evaluate the treatment outcomes. In this scope, the aim of this study was to design a personalized multi-channel functional electrical stimulation (FES) controller for gait training, integrating three novel aspects: (1) the FES strategy was based on healthy muscle synergies in order to mimic the neural solutions adopted by the CNS to generate locomotion; (2) the FES strategy was personalized according to an initial locomotion assessment of the patient and was designed to specifically activate the impaired biomechanical functions; (3) the FES strategy was mapped accurately on the altered gait kinematics providing a maximal synchronization between patient's volitional gait and stimulation patterns...
2016: Frontiers in Neuroscience
Michael Rutter
Translational research focuses on innovation in healthcare settings, but this is a two-way process that may have implications for either treatment or prevention. Smoking and lung cancer and the fetal alcohol syndrome are used as examples. Experimental medicine that budges basic and clinical science often constitutes a key way forward. Areas of scientific progress and challenge are discussed in relation to drug action, social cognition, cognitive neuroscience, molecular genetics, gene-environment interaction, and epigenetics...
October 3, 2016: Development and Psychopathology
Marina A Pavlova
As the most fascinating, complex, and dynamic part of our organism, the human brain is shaped by many interacting factors that not only are of neurobiological (including sex hormones) and environmental origin but are also sociocultural in their very nature (such as social roles). Gender is one of these factors. Most neurological, neurodevelopmental, neuropsychiatric, and psychosomatic disorders are characterized by impairments in visual social cognition (primarily body language reading and face perception) and a skewed sex ratio: females and males are affected differently in terms of clinical picture, prevalence, and severity...
September 26, 2016: Journal of Neuroscience Research
John P O'Doherty, Jeffrey Cockburn, Wolfgang M Pauli
In this review, we summarize findings supporting the existence of multiple behavioral strategies for controlling reward-related behavior, including a dichotomy between the goal-directed or model-based system and the habitual or model-free system in the domain of instrumental conditioning and a similar dichotomy in the realm of Pavlovian conditioning. We evaluate evidence from neuroscience supporting the existence of at least partly distinct neuronal substrates contributing to the key computations necessary for the function of these different control systems...
September 28, 2016: Annual Review of Psychology
Diana Martinez, Michael G Metzen, Maurice J Chacron
Understanding how the brain processes sensory input to generate behavior remains an important problem in neuroscience. Towards this end, it is useful to compare results obtained across multiple species to gain understanding as to the general principles of neural coding. Here we investigated hindbrain pyramidal cell activity in the weakly electric fish Apteronotus albifrons. We found strong heterogeneities when looking at baseline activity. Additionally, ON and OFF-type cells responded to increases and decreases of sinusoidal and noise stimuli, respectively...
September 28, 2016: Journal of Neurophysiology
Léo Pio-Lopez, Ange Nizard, Karl Friston, Giovanni Pezzulo
Active inference is a general framework for perception and action that is gaining prominence in computational and systems neuroscience but is less known outside these fields. Here, we discuss a proof-of-principle implementation of the active inference scheme for the control or the 7-DoF arm of a (simulated) PR2 robot. By manipulating visual and proprioceptive noise levels, we show under which conditions robot control under the active inference scheme is accurate. Besides accurate control, our analysis of the internal system dynamics (e...
September 2016: Journal of the Royal Society, Interface
Saeed R Kheradpisheh, Masoud Ghodrati, Mohammad Ganjtabesh, Timothée Masquelier
View-invariant object recognition is a challenging problem that has attracted much attention among the psychology, neuroscience, and computer vision communities. Humans are notoriously good at it, even if some variations are presumably more difficult to handle than others (e.g., 3D rotations). Humans are thought to solve the problem through hierarchical processing along the ventral stream, which progressively extracts more and more invariant visual features. This feed-forward architecture has inspired a new generation of bio-inspired computer vision systems called deep convolutional neural networks (DCNN), which are currently the best models for object recognition in natural images...
2016: Frontiers in Computational Neuroscience
Peirong Hu, Yedda Li, Nana Nikolaishvili-Feinberg, Giuseppe Scesa, Yanmin Bi, Dao Pan, Dominic Moore, Ernesto R Bongarzone, Mark S Sands, Ryan Miller, Tal Kafri
Currently, presymtomatic hematopoietic stem and progenitor cell transplantation (HSPCT) is the only therapeutic modality that alleviates Krabbe's disease (KD)-induced central nervous system damage. However, all HSPCT-treated patients exhibit severe deterioration in peripheral nervous system function characterized by major motor and expressive language pathologies. We hypothesize that a combination of several mechanisms contribute to this phenomenon, including 1) nonoptimal conditioning protocols with consequent inefficient engraftment and biodistribution of donor-derived cells and 2) insufficient uptake of donor cell-secreted galactocerebrosidease (GALC) secondary to a naturally low expression level of the cation-independent mannose 6-phosphate-receptor (CI-MPR)...
November 2016: Journal of Neuroscience Research
Silvia Zullo
In the contemporary debate on the use of the neurosciences in ethics and law, numerous arguments have been bandied about among scientists and philosophers looking to uphold or reject the reliability and validity of scientific findings obtained by brain imaging technologies. Among the most vexing questions is, Can we trust that technology? One point of disagreement is whether brain scans offer a window through which to observe the functioning of the mind, in such a way as to enable lawyers, judges, physicians, and lawmakers to detect anomalies in brain function that may account for criminal unconscious behavior...
October 2016: Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics: CQ: the International Journal of Healthcare Ethics Committees
Jade Jackson, Anina N Rich, Mark A Williams, Alexandra Woolgar
Human cognition is characterized by astounding flexibility, enabling us to select appropriate information according to the objectives of our current task. A circuit of frontal and parietal brain regions, often referred to as the fronto-parietal attention network or multiple-demand (MD) regions, are believed to play a fundamental role in this flexibility. There is evidence that these regions dynamically adjust their responses to selectively process information that is currently relevant for behavior, as proposed by the "adaptive coding hypothesis" [Duncan, J...
September 14, 2016: Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience
Diego A Angulo, Cyril Schneider, James H Oliver, Nathalie Charpak, Jose T Hernandez
Brain research typically requires large amounts of data from different sources, and often of different nature. The use of different software tools adapted to the nature of each data source can make research work cumbersome and time consuming. It follows that data is not often used to its fullest potential thus limiting exploratory analysis. This paper presents an ancillary software tool called BRAVIZ that integrates interactive visualization with real-time statistical analyses, facilitating access to multi-facetted neuroscience data and automating many cumbersome and error-prone tasks required to explore such data...
2016: Frontiers in Neuroinformatics
Ji-Song Guan, Jun Jiang, Hong Xie, Kai-Yuan Liu
Episodic memory in human brain is not a fixed 2-D picture but a highly dynamic movie serial, integrating information at both the temporal and the spatial domains. Recent studies in neuroscience reveal that memory storage and recall are closely related to the activities in discrete memory engram (trace) neurons within the dentate gyrus region of hippocampus and the layer 2/3 of neocortex. More strikingly, optogenetic reactivation of those memory trace neurons is able to trigger the recall of naturally encoded memory...
2016: Frontiers in Neural Circuits
Joyce Keifer, Cliff H Summers
Current trends in neuroscience research have moved toward a reliance on rodent animal models to study most aspects of brain function. Such laboratory-reared animals are highly inbred, have been disengaged from their natural environments for generations and appear to be of limited predictive value for successful clinical outcomes. In this Perspective article, we argue that research on a rich diversity of animal model systems is fundamental to new discoveries in evolutionarily conserved core physiological and molecular mechanisms that are the foundation of human brain function...
2016: Frontiers in Systems Neuroscience
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