How to Give Thanks Like a Neuroscientist

You’re on your way to the traditional Thanksgiving family get-together. You drive down a familiar street, locate your familiar house, and park in a familiar spot.… Read more

Mental Health is a Part of Health: A Conversation with Shekhar Saxena

In a recent presidential town hall, President Obama looked directly into the camera and made a powerful statement about mental health. “If something inside you feels like it’s wounded, it’s… Read more

Garbage Smells Green and Gunshots Are Rainbows

The minds of individuals are like parallel universes, forever inaccessible to one another.  Never do we truly see through the eyes of another person.  It is common for us to… Read more

Meet our newest team member Kayleen Schreiber

We have someone new joining our team!  She is a neuroscience PhD student at the University of Iowa, and she studies speech perception – but let’s let the animation she created… Read more

Neuron See, Neuron Do: The Mirror Neuron System and Clinical Implications

If you grew up with siblings, it is likely that you have heard the phrase, ”Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.”  However, it wasn’t until a groundbreaking finding in… Read more

Learning from Disorder: The Paradox of Information in the Brain

In Dante’s Inferno, the fifth circle of Hell is a place where the wrathful fight each other for eternity.  Similarly, I often consider YouTube comments to be an extracanonical circle… Read more

LSD: Psychedelic Thrill or Optimism Pill?

If you’re in a room with ten adults, chances are two of them are going to develop a mental illness –- and only one of them will receive proper treatment.… Read more

The Strange Relationship between Nicotine and Parkinson’s Disease

According to the World Health Organization, smoking is responsible for approximately 6 million deaths in the world every year or one fatality every six seconds.  71% of all lung cancers… Read more

The Neuroscience of Star Wars

For the first time in over a decade, a new Star Wars film is upon us, and if you’re like the staff of Knowing Neurons, your nucleus accumbens is firing… Read more

Sarah-Jayne Blakemore Discusses the Mysterious Workings of the Adolescent Brain

What brain regions are employed when we interact with other people?  Cognitive neuroscientist Sarah-Jayne Blakemore explains the “social brain” in her TED talk and sheds light on the complex networks… Read more

Ghost in the Machine: The Neuroscience of Consciousness

Some questions cannot be addressed by science.  Like parallel universes, the consciousness of others is not something that can be directly observed, measured, or experienced.  Rene Descartes famously said, “I… Read more

Hubel and Wiesel & the Neural Basis of Visual Perception

Snap!  Crackle!  Pop! Those are the sounds that Professors David Hubel and Torsten Wiesel heard in the early 1950s when they recorded from neurons in the visual cortex of a… Read more

Understanding the Visual System: A Conversation with Botond Roska

[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/174013562″ params=”auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false&visual=true” width=”100%” height=”450″ iframe=”true” /] When we see the world, there is a huge amount of processing that occurs in the neural circuits of the retina, thalamus, and… Read more

Getting Technical: Methods in Neuroscience

It is an exciting time for neuroscience. The BRAIN Initiative (Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies) is in the spotlight as a part of the new Presidential focus and recently… Read more

Oh, Rats! They’ll Regret This.

We often find ourselves in decision-making dilemmas along the day. For instance, to reach work on time, would you rather take the shorter, faster route or the longer, scenic route?… Read more

What do single cell green algae have to do with the state of the art of neuroscience?

Well, a lot actually!  Green algae, or Chlamydomonas reinhardtii to be formal, are the unicellular organisms with a unique trait that has been helping make huge advances in modern neuroscience… Read more

A Close Look into the Alzheimer’s Brain

Your brain is able to store massive amounts of memories throughout your lifetime.  There are cases, however, in which this ability progressively degrades and eventually disappears, giving way to problems… Read more

Making New Blood Vessels Helps Neuronal Recovery

Our bodies possess unique and amazing capabilities for self-healing and repair.  Time and again, we have witnessed (or experienced first-hand) someone with a broken bone injury.  After some medical intervention,… Read more
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