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  • M&Ms leave the brain craving more - Futurity
    University Cornell University Duke University Emory University ETH Zurich Georgia Institute of Technology Indiana University Iowa State University Johns Hopkins University McGill University Michigan State University Monash University National University of Singapore New York University Northwestern University Penn State Princeton University Purdue University Rice University Rutgers University Stanford University Stony Brook University Syracuse University Texas A M University Tulane University University at Buffalo University College London University of Arizona University of California at Irvine University of California Berkeley University of California Davis University of California Santa Barbara University of Chicago University of Colorado at Boulder University of Copenhagen University of Florida University of Illinois University of Iowa University of Kansas University of Leeds University of Maryland University of Melbourne University of Michigan University of Minnesota University of Missouri University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill University of Nottingham University of Oregon University of Pennsylvania University of Pittsburgh University of Queensland University of Rochester University of Sheffield University of Southampton University of Southern California University of Texas at Austin University of Toronto University of Virginia University of Warwick University of Washington University of York Vanderbilt University Washington University in St Louis Yale University Top Stories Related Articles Why fake sweeteners can taste funky Teen brains predict song popularity Why we always see the man in the moon Share This Article facebook twitter Action googleplus Google linkedin LinkedIn pinterest Pinterest reddit Reddit Stumbleupon mail Email Print M Ms leave the brain craving more University of Michigan right Original Study Posted by Jared Wadley Michigan on September 24 2012 You are free to share this article under the Attribution 4 0 International license U MICHIGAN US The same part of the brain usually thought to control movement may also cause people to overeat especially foods that are extra tasty The neostriatum located near the middle and front of the brain the part of the brain that is damaged in patients with Parkinson s disease and Huntington s disease has traditionally been thought to control only motor movements Yet for several years it has been known that the neostriatum is active in brains of obese people when viewing or tasting foods and in brains of drug addicts when viewing photos of drug taking Published in the journal Current Biology a new study shows that an opium like chemical enkaphalin produced naturally in the brain is a mechanism that generates intense motivation to consume pleasant rewards says Alexandra DiFeliceantonio a doctoral student in psychology at the University of Michigan and the study s lead author When researchers gave extra morphine like drug stimulation to the top of the neostriatum in rats it caused the animals to eat twice the normal amount of sweet fatty foods in this case M M milk chocolate candies The same brain area we tested here is active when obese people see foods and when drug addicts see drug scenes DiFeliceantonio says So it seems likely that our enkephalin findings in rats mean that this neurotransmitter may drive some forms of

    Original URL path: http://www.futurity.org/mms-leave-the-brain-craving-more/ (2016-02-12)
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  • Can wearable tech make public speaking less scary? - Futurity
    Chapel Hill University of Nottingham University of Oregon University of Pennsylvania University of Pittsburgh University of Queensland University of Rochester University of Sheffield University of Southampton University of Southern California University of Texas at Austin University of Toronto University of Virginia University of Warwick University of Washington University of York Vanderbilt University Washington University in St Louis Yale University Science and Technology Related Articles Superthin graphene transforms optics Gene allows plants to flip flop reproduction Koalas hug trees because they re cool Play Share This Article facebook twitter Action googleplus Google linkedin LinkedIn pinterest Pinterest reddit Reddit Stumbleupon mail Email Print The new interface can give nervous public speakers real time feedback about volume modulation and speaking rate while being minimally distracting Credit Flickr Can wearable tech make public speaking less scary University of Rochester right Original Study Posted by Leonor Sierra Rochester on March 31 2015 You are free to share this article under the Attribution 4 0 International license Public speaking gives some people the jitters A new intelligent user interface for Google Glass gives real time feedback on volume modulation and speaking rate all while remaining minimally distracting The new interface can record a speaker and transmit the audio to a server to automatically analyze the volume and speaking rate and then present data to the speaker in real time The feedback lets the speaker adjust his or her volume and speaking rate or continue as before Researchers will present a paper on the system which they call Rhema after the Greek word for utterance today at the Association for Computer Machinery s Intelligent User Interfaces IUI conference in Atlanta On the left a speaker wears Google Glass and on the right the view of the audience from the speaker s perspective with the real time feedback provided by the Rhema system Credit M Iftekhar Tanveer et al Feedback without distraction My wife always tells me that I end up speaking too softly says Ehsan Hoque assistant professor of computer science at University of Rochester who has used the system while giving lectures Rhema reminded me to keep my volume up It was a good experience He says the practice has helped him become more aware of his volume even when he is not wearing the smart glasses Providing feedback in real time during a speech presents some challenges the researchers say One challenge is to keep the speakers informed about their speaking performance without distracting them from their speech they write A significant enough distraction can introduce unnatural behaviors such as stuttering or awkward pausing Secondly the head mounted display is positioned near the eye which might cause inadvertent attention shifts Louder slower Overcoming these challenges was the focus of the research says M Iftekhar Tanveer the paper s lead author To do this they tested the system with a group of 30 native English speakers using Google Glass They evaluated different options of delivering the feedback and then experimented with using different colors like a

    Original URL path: http://www.futurity.org/glasses-public-speaking-887152/ (2016-02-12)
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  • Memories, in the cells of your mind - Futurity
    University of Washington University of York Vanderbilt University Washington University in St Louis Yale University Health and Medicine Related Articles Salmonella s lethal sorting machine Could light beams replace pacemakers After exercise muscles have more stem cells Memories in the cells of your mind Johns Hopkins University Posted by Melissa on April 8 2009 You are free to share this article under the Attribution 4 0 International license Rudiger von der Heydt Johns Hopkins professor at the Zanvyl Krieger Mind Brain Institute JOHNS HOPKINS US As we look at the world around us images flicker into our brains like so many disparate pixels on a computer screen that change every time our eyes move which is several times a second Yet we don t perceive the world as a constantly flashing computer display Why not Neuroscientists think that part of the answer lies in a special region of the brain s visual cortex which is in charge of distinguishing between background and foreground images Writing in a recent issue of the journal Neuron the team demonstrates that nerve cells in this region called V2 are able to grab onto figure ground information from visual images for several seconds even after the images themselves are removed from our sight Recent studies have hotly debated whether the visual system uses a buffer to store image information and if so the duration of that storage said Rudiger von der Heydt a professor in Johns Hopkins Zanvyl Krieger Mind Brain Institute and co author on the paper We found that the answer is yes the brain in fact stores the last image seen for up to two seconds The image that the brain grabs and holds onto momentarily is not detailed it s more like a rough sketch of the layout of objects in the scene von der Heydt explains This may elucidate at least in part how the brain creates for us a stable visual world when the information coming in through our eyes changes at a rapid fire pace up to four times in a single second The study was based on recordings of activity in nerve cells in the V2 region of the brains of macaques whose visual systems closely resemble that of humans Located at the very back of the brain V2 is roughly the size of a wristwatch strap The macaques were rewarded for watching a screen onto which various images were presented as the researchers recorded the animals brain nerve cells response Previous experiments have shown that the nerve cells in V2 code for elementary features such as pieces of contour and patches of color What is characteristic of V2 though is that it codes these features with reference to objects A vertical line for instance is coded either as the contour of an object on the left or as a contour of an object on the right In this study the researchers presented sequences of images consisting of a briefly flashed square followed by a vertical line

    Original URL path: http://www.futurity.org/memories-in-the-cells-of-your-mind/ (2016-02-12)
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  • Light therapy changes the way mice feel pain - Futurity
    Print The fact that we can give a mouse an injection and two weeks later shine a light on its paw to change the way it senses pain is very powerful Shrivats Iyer says Credit Novartis AG Flickr Light therapy changes the way mice feel pain Stanford University right Original Study Posted by Amy Adams Stanford on February 20 2014 You are free to share this article under the Attribution 4 0 International license Scientists were able to control the way mice sensed pain after modifying them with gene therapy and shining light on their paws Right now these mice are helping scientists to study pain how and why it occurs and why some people feel it so intensely without any obvious injury But Scott Delp a professor of bioengineering and mechanical engineering at Stanford University hopes one day the work he does with these mice could also help treat people who are in chronic debilitating pain This is an entirely new approach to study a huge public health issue Delp says It s a completely new tool that is now available to neuroscientists everywhere He is the senior author of a research paper published in Nature Biotechnology A switch for pain The mice are modified with gene therapy to have pain sensing nerves that can be controlled by light One color of light makes the mice more sensitive to pain Another reduces pain The scientists shone a light on the paws of mice through the Plexiglas bottom of the cage Graduate students Shrivats Iyer and Kate Montgomery who led the study say it opens the door to future experiments to understand the nature of pain and also touch and other sensations that are part of our daily lives but little understood The fact that we can give a mouse an injection and two weeks later shine a light on its paw to change the way it senses pain is very powerful Iyer says For example increasing or decreasing the sensation of pain in these mice could help scientists understand why pain seems to continue in people after an injury has healed Does persistent pain change those nerves in some way And if so how can they be changed back to a state where in the absence of an injury they stop sending searing messages of pain to the brain Leaders at the National Institutes of Health agree the work could have important implications for treating pain This powerful approach shows great potential for helping the millions who suffer pain from nerve damage says Linda Porter the pain policy adviser at the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke and a leader of the NIH s Pain Consortium Now with a flick of a switch scientists may be able to rapidly test new pain relieving medications and one day doctors may be able to use light to relieve pain she adds Accidental discovery The researchers took advantage of a technique called optogenetics which involves light sensitive proteins called opsins that

    Original URL path: http://www.futurity.org/one-day-light-treatment-may-help-soothe-pain/ (2016-02-12)
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  • Dharshini Subbiah-NUS, Author at Futurity
    Cardiff University Carnegie Mellon University Case Western Reserve University Columbia University Cornell University Duke University Emory University ETH Zurich Georgia Institute of Technology Indiana University Iowa State University Johns Hopkins University McGill University Michigan State University Monash University National University of Singapore New York University Northwestern University Penn State Princeton University Purdue University Rice University Rutgers University Stanford University Stony Brook University Syracuse University Texas A M University Tulane University University at Buffalo University College London University of Arizona University of California at Irvine University of California Berkeley University of California Davis University of California Santa Barbara University of Chicago University of Colorado at Boulder University of Copenhagen University of Florida University of Illinois University of Iowa University of Kansas University of Leeds University of Maryland University of Melbourne University of Michigan University of Minnesota University of Missouri University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill University of Nottingham University of Oregon University of Pennsylvania University of Pittsburgh University of Queensland University of Rochester University of Sheffield University of Southampton University of Southern California University of Texas at Austin University of Toronto University of Virginia University of Warwick University of Washington University of York Vanderbilt University Washington University in St Louis Yale University All Articles By Dharshini Subbiah NUS Duke University National University of Singapore New antibody adds to arsenal against Dengue There are four Dengue serotypes and scientists have discovered an antibody that defeats the second of them There s just one left on the way to a vaccine READ MORE Duke University National University of Singapore RNA catalogue reveals key to brown fat New research on brown fat s regulation in mice could give researchers and weight loss companies a therapeutic target for obesity READ MORE Duke University National University of Singapore Eating out once a week may raise

    Original URL path: http://www.futurity.org/author/nus-subbiah/ (2016-02-12)
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  • Antigen discovery sets up salmonella vaccine - Futurity
    State University Monash University National University of Singapore New York University Northwestern University Penn State Princeton University Purdue University Rice University Rutgers University Stanford University Stony Brook University Syracuse University Texas A M University Tulane University University at Buffalo University College London University of Arizona University of California at Irvine University of California Berkeley University of California Davis University of California Santa Barbara University of Chicago University of Colorado at Boulder University of Copenhagen University of Florida University of Illinois University of Iowa University of Kansas University of Leeds University of Maryland University of Melbourne University of Michigan University of Minnesota University of Missouri University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill University of Nottingham University of Oregon University of Pennsylvania University of Pittsburgh University of Queensland University of Rochester University of Sheffield University of Southampton University of Southern California University of Texas at Austin University of Toronto University of Virginia University of Warwick University of Washington University of York Vanderbilt University Washington University in St Louis Yale University Health and Medicine Related Articles Does marijuana make it harder to quit other drugs Why scratching an itch makes it worse Photoswitch drug lets blind mice see Share This Article facebook twitter Action googleplus Google linkedin LinkedIn pinterest Pinterest reddit Reddit Stumbleupon mail Email Print Antigen discovery sets up salmonella vaccine University of California Davis right Original Study Posted by Pat Bailey UC Davis on February 20 2012 You are free to share this article under the Attribution 4 0 International license UC DAVIS US Researchers have taken an important step toward an effective vaccine for the foodborne bacteria salmonella The research team has identified a set of antigens molecules in the invading bacteria that trigger an immune response that is common to both mice and humans They report their findings in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Salmonella a group of increasingly antibiotic resistant foodborne bacteria kills hundreds of thousands of people worldwide each year These antigens will provide the research community with a foundation for developing a protective salmonella vaccine says Stephen McSorley an immunologist and associate professor in the University of California Davis Center for Comparative Medicine which investigates diseases that afflict both humans and animals Salmonella bacteria cause foodborne illness in industrialized nations More than 1 4 million cases occur annually in the United States alone according to the World Health Organization at an estimated cost of 3 billion and the loss of 580 lives There are currently no vaccines for the strains of salmonella that cause these types of illnesses Furthermore salmonella bacteria increasingly are becoming resistant to existing antibiotic treatments And no new effective antibiotics are on the horizon Although salmonella infections are extremely important to human and animal health around the world up until this time the target antigens that are so key to developing a vaccine had not been clearly defined McSorley says In an effort to identify those antigens the research team created an array or collection of 2 700

    Original URL path: http://www.futurity.org/antigen-discovery-sets-up-salmonella-vaccine/ (2016-02-12)
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  • The dirty little secret for making better vaccines - Futurity
    dirty little secret for making better vaccines University of Texas at Austin right Original Study Posted by Daniel Oppenheimer U Texas on January 21 2013 You are free to share this article under the Attribution 4 0 International license U TEXAS AUSTIN US A menu of 61 new strains of genetically engineered bacteria may mean better vaccines for diseases like flu whooping cough cholera and HPV The strains of E coli are part of a new class of biological adjuvants substances added to vaccines to boost the human immune response that are poised to transform vaccine design researchers say For 70 years the only adjuvants being used were aluminum salts says Stephen Trent associate professor of biology at the University of Texas at Austin They worked but we didn t fully understand why and there were limitations Then four years ago the first biological adjuvant was approved by the Food and Drug Administration I think what we re doing is a step forward from that It s going to allow us to design vaccines in a much more intentional way Adjuvants were discovered in the early years of commercial vaccine production when it was noticed that batches of vaccine that were accidentally contaminated often seemed to be more effective than those that were pure They re called the dirty little secret of immunology Trent says If the vials were dirty they elicited a better immune response What researchers eventually realized was that they could produce a one two punch by intentionally adding their own dirt adjuvant to the mix The main ingredient of the vaccine which was a killed or inactivated version of the bacteria or virus that the vaccine was meant to protect against did what it was supposed to do It taught the body s immune system to recognize it and produce antibodies in response to it The adjuvant amplifies that response by triggering a more general alarm which puts more agents of the immune system in circulation in the bloodstream where they can then learn to recognize the key antigen The result is an immune system more heavily armed to fight the virus or bacteria when it encounters it in the future For about 70 years the adjuvant of choice in nearly every vaccine worldwide was an aluminum salt Then in 2009 the FDA approved a new vaccine for human papillomavirus HPV It included a new kind of adjuvant that s a modified version of an endotoxin molecule These molecules which can be dangerous appear on the cell surface of a wide range of bacteria As a result humans have evolved over millions of years to detect and respond to them quickly They trigger an immediate red alert In some of its forms an endotoxin can kill you Trent says But the adjuvant which is called MPL is a very small carefully modified piece of it so it s able to trigger the immune response without overdoing it What Trent and his colleagues have done is expand

    Original URL path: http://www.futurity.org/the-dirty-little-secret-for-making-better-vaccines/ (2016-02-12)
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  • Ouchless sugar needles deliver 'dried' vaccine - Futurity
    Buffalo University College London University of Arizona University of California at Irvine University of California Berkeley University of California Davis University of California Santa Barbara University of Chicago University of Colorado at Boulder University of Copenhagen University of Florida University of Illinois University of Iowa University of Kansas University of Leeds University of Maryland University of Melbourne University of Michigan University of Minnesota University of Missouri University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill University of Nottingham University of Oregon University of Pennsylvania University of Pittsburgh University of Queensland University of Rochester University of Sheffield University of Southampton University of Southern California University of Texas at Austin University of Toronto University of Virginia University of Warwick University of Washington University of York Vanderbilt University Washington University in St Louis Yale University Health and Medicine Related Articles Uganda rainfall linked to infant brain swelling Newborn diet may set the stage for obesity Abortion secrecy differs for pro life and pro choice Share This Article facebook twitter Action googleplus Google linkedin LinkedIn pinterest Pinterest reddit Reddit Stumbleupon mail Email Print Ouchless sugar needles deliver dried vaccine right Original Study Posted by Emma Reynolds Kings College London on February 7 2013 You are free to share this article under the Attribution 4 0 International license KING S COLLEGE LONDON UK A technique that delivers a dried live vaccine to the skin without a traditional needle could support the global fight against diseases such as HIV and malaria The new method requires no refrigeration and is less expensive and less painful compared to using hypodermic needles It would also remove safety risks from needle contamination httpv www youtube com watch v ailJ4 FhG2s HIV malaria and tuberculosis represent major global health challenges Although promising research is under way to develop vaccines considerable stumbling blocks remain for countries where transporting and storing live vaccines in a continuously cold environment around 2 C to 8 C or below would not be possible If a cold chain cannot be maintained for a live vaccine there is a high risk it could become unsafe and lose effectiveness As reported in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences researchers used a silicone mold to create a microneedle array a tiny disc with several needles made of sugar that dissolve when inserted into the skin The team formulated a dried version of a live modified adenovirus based candidate HIV vaccine in sugar sucrose and used the mold to create the microneedle array The dried live vaccine remained stable and effective at room temperature To test the vaccine s effectiveness they gave it to mice The team observed how the vaccine dissolved in the skin and identified for the first time exactly which specialized immune cells in the skin pick up this type of vaccine and activate the immune system the first evidence that a subset of specialized dendritic cells in the skin are responsible for triggering the immune response When compared with a traditional needle vaccine method the immune response

    Original URL path: http://www.futurity.org/ouchless-sugar-needles-deliver-dried-vaccine/ (2016-02-12)
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