Bilinguals’ Ease of Lexical Access Related to the Switching of Languages

Sooraj Shah ’24 Over 43% of the United States population is bilingual and speaks more than one language. A skill fostered at a young age, bilingual speakers can converse and switch freely between multiple languages, but the root cause of why and when this occurs is not clear. A study conducted in Spain in collaboration with Stony Brook University’s Psychology Department explored the relationship between … Continue reading Bilinguals’ Ease of Lexical Access Related to the Switching of Languages

The Correlation Between Urinary Growth Factor and Brain Growth in Relation to Postnatal Development

Sooraj Shah ’24 Premature births occur in nearly 1 in every 10 cases in the United States, which can lead to numerous diverse health effects in the future. Two neurotrophic proteins which are responsible for the survival of neurons, Nerve Growth Factor(NGF) and Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor(BDNF), are crucial for the development of the peripheral and central nervous systems. NGFs and BDNFs are critical for … Continue reading The Correlation Between Urinary Growth Factor and Brain Growth in Relation to Postnatal Development

Response Inhibition Control in Migraineurs

Wendy Wu ’22 Migraine is a neurological disorder characterized by frequent headaches, particularly prevalent in women. Much research has gone into identifying the causes of migraines with the hope of increasing preventative measures and developing treatment. Although evidence suggests that migraines are caused by an imbalance of cortical excitatory and inhibitory processes, there is little empirical data of actual pathophysiological features underlying response inhibition in … Continue reading Response Inhibition Control in Migraineurs

Monkey Behavior Aids In Understanding Human Cognition

Yukta Kulkarni ’22 The human brain’s prefrontal cortex plays an important role in cognitive behavior. It contains several sections including the lateral prefrontal cortex (LPFC), which is associated with working memory, reasoning, and planning; and the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC), which directs reversal and reinforcement learning, reward evaluation, and alternative option evaluation.  These structures are also present in animals and have similar functions. To learn more … Continue reading Monkey Behavior Aids In Understanding Human Cognition

Music to One’s Ears: Familiarity and Music Engagement in People With Parkinson’s Disease

Thumyat Noe ’23 Parkinson’s disease is a brain disorder characterized by loss of dopamine and reduced innervation of neural structures that are responsible for coordination of motor movements. Affected individuals often have difficulty walking and maintaining balance. However, music has been shown to be a helpful external cue that reduces these symptoms. Research shows that exposure to music activates brain regions that are closely related … Continue reading Music to One’s Ears: Familiarity and Music Engagement in People With Parkinson’s Disease

Compartmental function and modulation of the striatum

Sabah Bari ‘24 The striatum is one of the main input areas of the basal ganglia, a neuronal circuit necessary for voluntary movement control. It is a critical component of motor control, action selection and reward systems within the brain. Almost all elements of the brain’s reward circuit are modulated during social behavior. The striatum has two main efferent pathways. There are 2 main efferent … Continue reading Compartmental function and modulation of the striatum

Expectation-induced modulation of metastable activity underlies faster coding of sensory stimuli

Sabah Bari ’24 Expectation is what drives the human brain to perceive our senses. Perception is connected to sensory processing, and the recognition of the stimuli is what determines how accurately and how fast individuals are able to understand it. In the gustatory cortex, the pre-stimulus activity is the anticipation of a specific taste before even consuming a food. The anticipation is a trigger to … Continue reading Expectation-induced modulation of metastable activity underlies faster coding of sensory stimuli

Get Your Head Out of the Game

Gwenyth Mercep ’22 Chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) is a brain disease associated with exposure to repetitive head impacts, such as those from tackle American football [1]. CTE can cause numerous and debilitating early-life symptoms like behavioral and mood disturbances, most notable, impulse control and depression [1]. Episodic memory loss and dementia, forms of cognitive dysfunction, are reported by patients with CTE later in life [1]. … Continue reading Get Your Head Out of the Game

All Eyes and Ears: How Visual Deprivation Enhances Auditory Learning in Adult Mice

Mariam Malik ‘22 Past research and work has proven the interconnectedness of all senses and their corresponding cortices in the brain. For example, it has been scientifically proven that those lacking in one sense possess advanced abilities in others. Cross-modal learning, or the manipulation of one sense to cause alterations in another, is a key feature of further research. Researchers at the University of Maryland … Continue reading All Eyes and Ears: How Visual Deprivation Enhances Auditory Learning in Adult Mice

21st Century Mind: The Effects of Blue-Light on the Brain, Retinas, and Rate of Aging

Mariam Malik ‘22 Blue light from electronic devices, such as smartphones and laptops, is of shorter wavelength on the light spectrum, thereby giving off higher amounts of energy. The harmful effects of absorbing too many light rays, such as UV and micro, have been researched and known. However, a recent study at Oregon State University on Drosophila melanogaster, the common fruit fly, shows the damaging … Continue reading 21st Century Mind: The Effects of Blue-Light on the Brain, Retinas, and Rate of Aging

Neurons that Help Us Forget

Nicole Zhao ’20 Imagine having the ability to never forget. This would come in handy if one needed to memorize a textbook or lecture slides for an exam. However, being able to remember every single moment of your life in snapshots does have its drawbacks. This is exactly what happened to a man known as subject S. who was known for his unforgettable memory in … Continue reading Neurons that Help Us Forget

Increased Levels of Gray Matter in the Brain May Lead to Psychopathic Qualities

Joyce Chen ’23 Psychopathy is a genetic mutation in the brain that causes individuals to have egotistical tendencies. Such tendencies can lead to unwarranted actions such as crime or even murder, as psychopaths do not keep the wellbeing of others in mind. However, some psychopaths are capable of keeping their dark thoughts hidden very well, thereby having seemingly socially acceptable behavior. Recently, researchers from the … Continue reading Increased Levels of Gray Matter in the Brain May Lead to Psychopathic Qualities