This specific debate—and the dense politics as a whole—exists because competing frameworks are vying for competing funding, a conflict that pre-dates Freud’s departure from neurology.
“Neuroscience” refers to the scientific study of brain structure and function, and their control over cognition, emotion, and behavior. It has become one of the hottest fields of research, endorsed by the Obama administration and awash in public and private sector dollars. It is widely believed that the current work to deepen our understanding of the brain will one day yield a revolution in the diagnosis and treatment of mental health conditions. However, the human brain is almost unfathomably complex, and we are still many years away from fully understanding what role underlying brain structures play in the manifestation of mental illness. Here you will find stories hailing the latest breakthroughs as well as more skeptical and cautionary voices.
In 2006, Liss Murphy was in thrall to what she calls a “sepsis of the soul” — an intractable and debilitating depression. No conventional treatments had helped. So when she heard that doctors at Massachusetts General Hospital, in Boston, had developed an experimental cure for severe depression that involved permanently implanting electrodes in the brain, she didn’t Read more
A study has found structural differences in the cerebral cortex of patients with depression and that these differences normalize with appropriate medication.
Researchers recently discovered that an inhibitory brain receptor triggers synaptic pruning in adolescence. Now, a new article shows that drugs that selectively target these receptors can alter synapse number, with possible implications for the treatment of autism and schizophrenia.
The team identified four subtypes of depression. If confirmed in additional studies, the findings could enable clearer diagnoses and pave the way for personalized therapies targeting brain networks found to be awry in individual patients.
While scientists have made tremendous advances in decoding the genetics of physical illnesses, such as cancer, and developing precision therapies, treatments for mental health remain blunt tools.
Dr. Varghese said positive perception of self increased one’s longevity. Life satisfaction, social support system, good physical and mental health, financial security and personal control over one’s life were essential for successful aging.
Health care would be remiss if the intersections between brain (i.e., neuroscience and biology) and mind (i.e., psychology and mental health) were not considered.
A new study, published in the journal Human Brain Mapping, questions previous findings that specific brain regions are implicated in particular mental health conditions.
In its debut performance, a powerful new genetic engineering tool has revealed secrets of functionally distinct brain circuits for social fear and aggression in mice.
Among youth with post-traumatic stress disorder, the study found structural differences between the sexes in one part of the insula, a brain region that detects cues from the body and processes emotions and empathy.
A University of British Columbia-led review of mind-wandering research proposes a new framework for understanding how thoughts flow, even at rest.
On July 1st, 2016, I joined a diverse group of scientists and public health professionals from around the world who gathered for a joint meeting between the World Health Organization and the Organization for Human Brain Mapping.
Neural responses decline after repeated acts of dishonesty, research suggests.
New research involving the removal and analysis of single neurons from fruit fly embryos has revealed insights into the causes of mental diseases such as bipolar disease.
Like life itself, technologies evolve. So it is that the telephone became the smartphone, that near-at-hand portal to the information superhighway. We have held these powerful devices in the palms of our hands for the better part of a decade now, but there is a palpable sense that in recent years something has shifted, that Read more
In recent years, brain-mapping initiatives have been popping up around the world. They have different goals and areas of expertise, but now researchers will attempt to apply their collective knowledge in a global push to more fully understand the brain.
Researchers have discovered that the response to anxiety in teenagers may include not only the parts of the brain which deal with emotions (the limbic system), as has been long understood, but also movement control centres in the brain.
We all have our “hot buttons” – events or issues that can trigger an acute stress response.
Recent research points to the importance of a molecule called relaxin-3 in the brain, with effects on various processes and behaviors such as mood, stress, and cognition.
Adapting to Stress: Understanding the Neurobiology of Resilience, an article published in Behavioral Medicine, examines the way our bodies, specifically our brains, become “stress-resilient.”
Last month, I reviewed an advance copy of “Patient H.M.”, the new book by journalist Luke Dittrich that looks at the story of the amnesia patient Henry Molaison, perhaps the most famous case study in neuroscience. Shortly after posting my review I interviewed Dittrich and this post presents this interview.
Distinct areas of the brain show altered activity and connectivity during hypnotic trances in individuals who are highly hypnotizable, researchers have discovered.