Brain Map Photo

New Detailed Brain Map Could Aide Future Understanding

Researchers have created the most detailed general map of the brain to date by scanning the brains of 1200 people. After recording detailed imaging of the subjects’ brain activity as they performed a variety of mental tasks, the information was used to ‘teach’ a computer to identify spatial ‘regions’ of related activity. These regions span the brain, creating a 3D, puzzle-like map. Also called a … Continue reading New Detailed Brain Map Could Aide Future Understanding

nyc-under-water

How one volcano concealed the sea-level acceleration record

Using satellite records and global climate models, scientists have shown that sea level rise is accelerating. Although sea level data from the past 23 years diverged from this long term trend, researchers demonstrate that the abnormal cooling caused by the 1991 eruption of Mt. Pinatubo concealed the long-term trend. A high-resolution record of global sea level has been available since the 1992 launch of the … Continue reading How one volcano concealed the sea-level acceleration record

b7500_Connectome_ISN017_tube

The Brain is a Series of Tubes

The brain is made of up billions of neurons and even more connections between neurons. We can get an idea of how neurons are connected across the human brain using a type of brain scan called diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging (dMRI). How does dMRI work? It actually measures the direction that water moves throughout the brain. Sometimes, water can move in all directions equally easily – like … Continue reading The Brain is a Series of Tubes

Faeture (1)

Climate Change 2016: Make America Hot Again

by Katie Dagon figures by Utsarga Adhikary Heat waves and droughts are staples of summer weather in America. This summer has proven to be no different! Much of the central and eastern U.S. endured a strong heat wave in mid-July. While the “heat dome” has subsided, parts of the Northeast are still under a severe drought (see Figure 3). What makes a particular period of … Continue reading Climate Change 2016: Make America Hot Again

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

“I’m XY and I Know It”: Sex Determination Systems 101

by Katherine J. Wu figures by Daniel Utter Let’s talk about sex. Seriously. Not intercourse, though – more about how genetic sex is programmed during development. Sexual identity has been in the news often lately, and unsurprisingly so: the past few years have yielded sweeping reforms in civil rights, spurring new conflicts surrounding everything from age-old battles in gender equality to legislation enforcing anti-transgender bathrooms. … Continue reading “I’m XY and I Know It”: Sex Determination Systems 101

Times Square = a perfect example of ALAN. By chensiyuan [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC BY-SA 4.0-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Mice, light and exploring ALAN’s potential health hazards

In deciphering the mysteries of human health, mice have been one of our greatest allies. They have demonstrated the antibacterial properties of penicillin and served as a model for exploring obesity. Now they are helping researchers understand the potential negative effects of artificial light at night, or ALAN. Mounting epidemiological data shows an association of ALAN with cancer, obesity, depression and osteoporosis. Previous work has … Continue reading Mice, light and exploring ALAN’s potential health hazards

SITN_Taylor_cover_draft_1

Mirror Neurons After a Quarter Century: New light, new cracks

by JohnMark Taylor figures by Youngeun Kaitlyn Choi What about the human brain allows a person to perform such feats as learning guitar through imitation, empathizing with anothers’s pain, or intuiting where a fencer will strike next? Nearly twenty-five years ago, scientists discovered a special kind of cell called a mirror neuron that many both in science and the popular press came to believe might … Continue reading Mirror Neurons After a Quarter Century: New light, new cracks