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Brain Activity

NEWS
January 22, 2013 | By Melissa Healy
Just in case you were wondering, even while you're lifting weights at the gym, your brain is still in charge. It's the three-pound organ between your ears -- not the depletion of ATP in your muscles or a servomechanism in your heart -- that tells you to take a break before doing one more rep. A new study reveals how the brain decides to issue a "stop work" order, and what factors it takes into account in giving the go-ahead for hard physical labor to...
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SCIENCE
February 4, 2014 | By Geoffrey Mohan, This post has been corrected, as indicated below.
Memory can be altered by new experience, and isn't nearly as accurate as courtroom testimony might have us believe, a new study suggests. The results suggest a cheeky answer to the question posed by comedian Richard Pryor: "Who you gonna believe: me, or your lyin' eyes?" Turns out, Pryor was onto something. The brain behind our eyes can distort reality or verify it, based on subsequent experience. And somewhat paradoxically, the same area of the brain appears to be strongly involved in both activities, according to a study published online Tuesday in the Journal of Neuroscience.
NEWS
October 17, 1996 | JULIE MARQUIS, TIMES STAFF WRITER
What makes people smart? It is a question that scientists and philosophers have pondered for centuries, prompting complex calibrations, from head measurements to brain-bending tests. Yet the drive to probe the powers--and the limits--of the human mind has been thwarted by the hard facts of life: The brain was virtually a black box, its inner secrets locked within. Now, scientists are using the latest technology to peer inside.
NEWS
March 5, 1995 | JULIE MARQUIS, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Dr. Gerald Maguire's interest in stuttering dates back to the time he was a toddler, when he first tried to string sentences together. Through the years, as listeners pleaded with him to "just relax," he struggled to speak with the same fluency as those around him, always believing that it was a matter of psychic strength, of trying harder to force out the words trapped inside. His research is proving him wrong.
NEWS
March 6, 1985 | Associated Press
Photographer Bob East lay in a coma Tuesday, apparently brain dead after doctors accidentally injected a toxic preservative into his spine in what the head surgeon called "a tragic series of human errors." The substance, glutaraldehyde, was mistaken for spinal fluid taken from the patient earlier during an operation to remove a cancerous eye, said the surgeon, Dr. James Ryan Chandler. East underwent the operation last Friday and was found to be brain dead Monday.
SCIENCE
December 3, 2012 | By Rosie Mestel
A very kind woman in her 80s I knew was once persuaded to part with a towering sago palm growing in her yard for $300 -- maybe 10 times less than it was worth -- by some men who knocked on her door. The men were busy digging a trench around the plant when relatives returned and halted the transaction. She had trusted the strangers and was nearly bilked by them -- a perfect example of the kind of thing that happens disproportionately to older people, be it via charity scams, "utility workers" who are actually burglars or bogus travel package deals.
SCIENCE
February 6, 2014 | By Geoffrey Mohan
A generic blood pressure drug could prevent hyperactive brain cell firing associated with early stages of autism spectrum disorder, according to a new study. Injecting pregnant mice with Bumetanide, a diuretic, appears to correct a developmental switch flipped during childbirth that reverses the firing characteristics of neurons in newborns, according to a study published online Thursday in the journal Science. Bumetanide mimics the effects of oxytocin, a hormone released during labor that helps protect newborns from the stresses and complications of birth, the study found.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 14, 1988
A Mexicali man who was struck in the head by a bullet fired from a passing car in Santa Ana Sunday was breathing Monday on a mechanical support system at Fountain Valley Regional Hospital, hospital officials said, but his brain-wave activity has ceased. Ralph Moore, 20, was still listed in critical condition, a hospital spokeswoman said.
NEWS
April 7, 1999 | ROBERT LEE HOTZ, TIMES SCIENCE WRITER
Standard doses of the sex hormone estrogen strengthen brain activity in older, post-menopausal women, Yale University researchers said Tuesday, offering the best evidence yet that the commonly prescribed hormone alters the neural circuits involved in human memory. By testing the kind of working memory involved in everyday verbal and visual tasks, the researchers quickly detected significant differences in neural activity between women who were taking the hormone and those who were not.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 3, 1991 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
California researchers have found a new clue to the cause of narcolepsy, a neurological disorder characterized by intense sleepiness and episodes of cataplexy--an abrupt loss of muscle tone that is often triggered by sudden strong emotions. They have found that cataplexy is caused by the same brain cells that cause loss of muscle tone during so-called "rapid-eye-movement," or REM, sleep. Narcolepsy affects an estimated one in 2,000 people in the United States, a total of more than 125,000.
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