A dietary supplement dampens the brain hyperexcitability seen in seizures or epilepsy

Seizure disorders — including epilepsy — are associated with pathological hyperexcitability in brain neurons. Unfortunately, there are limited available treatments that can prevent this hyperexcitability. However, University of Alabama at Birmingham researchers have found that inducing a biochemical alteration in brain proteins via the dietary supplement glucosamine was able to rapidly dampen that pathological hyperexcitability in rat and mouse models.

Study shows how ‘love hormone’ oxytocin spurs sociability

Why is it so much fun to hang out with our friends? Why are some people so sociable while others are loners or seemingly outright allergic to interactions with others? A new study by researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine begins to provide an answer, pinpointing places and processes in the brain that promote socialization by providing pleasurable sensations when it occurs.

Nerve cells’ gatekeepers take many forms

Rice, UTHealth researchers use light-sensitive molecules to track proteins critical to cell signaling. The ability to track the movements of single molecules has revealed how proteins on the surface of nerve cells control gates that turn chemical signals into electrical signals. The finding is a step forward in detailing mechanisms involved in neurological disease, according to researchers at Rice University and the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth).

New UTSA study describes how dopamine tells you it isn’t worth the wait

How do we know if it was worth the wait in line to get a meal at the new restaurant in town? To do this our brain must be able to signal how good the meal tastes and associate this feeling with the restaurant. This is done by a small group of cells deep in the brain that release the chemical dopamine.

Learning and staying in shape key to longer lifespan

People who are overweight cut their life expectancy by two months for every extra kilogramme of weight they carry, research suggests. A major study of the genes that underpin longevity has also found that education leads to a longer life, with almost a year added for each year spent studying beyond school. Other key findings are that people who give up smoking, study for longer and are open to new experiences might expect to live longer.

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