Housekeeping cells in the brain driving schizophrenia

By Andrea Flores Esparza The brain can be viewed as a theatrical performance, where the neurons are the protagonists on the play whilst glial cells are the backstage crew that ensure that the show runs smoothly (BrainFacts, n.d.). Although neurons are considered the basic working unit of the brain due to their fascinating ability toContinue reading “Housekeeping cells in the brain driving schizophrenia”

Autophagy, Ageing and Alzheimer’s

By William Carter Thanks to the medical revolutions of the last century, and the assured advance of modern medicine into the next, we now live longer than ever in our species’ history. Yet despite the vast resources pooled into fighting disease, one enduring bastion remains – ageing. Ageing is the gradual physiological decline we allContinue reading “Autophagy, Ageing and Alzheimer’s”

Regulation of appetite

By Shiyi Liang Eating is an essential process in a human’s life, and appetite is a vital part of human eating behaviour. Appetite can be described as the thirst for food and is regulated by both the central nervous system (CNS) and peripheral signals. The arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus receives and integrates signals fromContinue reading “Regulation of appetite”

Why haven’t we cured Alzheimer’s disease?

By Alexandra Grba As our global population ages, the occurence of neurodegenerative disease is predicted to rise dramatically. Advances in medicine mean that our bodies are being taken care of more efficiently than ever before, allowing us to grow very old while our brains deteriorate.  Currently, over 50 million people worldwide suffer from dementia; aContinue reading “Why haven’t we cured Alzheimer’s disease?”

The neuroscience behind extroversion and introversion: are we stuck with the personality traits we are given at birth?

By Caitlin Davies Objective personality type tests were first developed during the first World War in order to identify soldiers who were most likely to suffer from nervous breakdowns during enemy bombardment (Gibby & Zickar, 2008). Since then, personality type tests have become more sophisticated and are now commonplace in workplaces, schools and many otherContinue reading “The neuroscience behind extroversion and introversion: are we stuck with the personality traits we are given at birth?”

The effects of addictive drugs on our reward system and the journey towards addiction

By Themis Halka  Drug consumption is a major problem in today’s societies due to its relatively easy availability and strong tendency to lead to addiction. The effects of drugs on the brain have been a central field of study for many years, with scientists trying to understand the changes occurring in the brain’s structure uponContinue reading “The effects of addictive drugs on our reward system and the journey towards addiction”

Differences between the extroverted brain and the introverted brain

By Jenny Tang  An extroverted person is one who feels “charged” after social interaction (Mesurado et al., 2014), whereas an introvert feels “charged” through its absence, feeling that social interaction is draining. Introversion and extroversion are not simply theoretical concepts, but can be physically observed through the use of imaging to understand their function.      TheContinue reading “Differences between the extroverted brain and the introverted brain”

How we engage in mutual cooperation: the neuroscience of trust

By Luciano Marinelli Throughout life, many decisions are made within the context of social interactions, hence will affect both us and other people. Difficult social decisions often involve an internal conflict between following our own interests and that of others. These decisions require a good amount of trust, especially when engaging in reciprocal exchange, inContinue reading “How we engage in mutual cooperation: the neuroscience of trust”

(Half) Awake and Afraid – Sleep Paralysis

By Sophya Yeoh The thought of suddenly being trapped and unable to move is terrifying, especially when one is in the safest possible place they can be – their own bed. That is the reality for those suffering from sleep paralysis (SP) – the inability to move or speak when one is just falling asleepContinue reading “(Half) Awake and Afraid – Sleep Paralysis”

Love: A Cocktail of Chemicals

By Nick Bitterlich Love is a sensation most people have experienced in one form or another; be it from loving a significant other, one’s parents, or a best friend. An array of feelings is associated with love, commonly including exhilaration, euphoria, a racing heart, anxiety, or “butterflies”. Scientists have been questioning the nature of theContinue reading “Love: A Cocktail of Chemicals”