Monday, 30 April 2012
Theories on Drug Addiction
The abusive consumption of a drug can result in dependency on it. The various phenomena associated with drug dependency—also commonly referred to as “drug addiction”—are fairly well known: initial pleasure, then tolerance, withdrawal, and so on. But these phenomena are so complex that it is hard to construct satisfactory models for them. Hence, many theories have been developed to try to explain drug dependency/addiction, and these theories are still being debated today. (more…)
Monday, 23 April 2012
Taking Photos To Remember Your Own Life
When people with episodic (autobiographical) memory problems wear a chest-mounted camera that automatically takes 2000 to 3000 photos every day, these photos can help them to remember their past activities. Studies with subjects who had various forms of amnesia showed that photos taken with such a camera let them remember more activities than a diary that they kept for the same purpose.
Monday, 16 April 2012
Fewer Glial Cells Than You Might Think?
Most neuroscience textbooks still state that the number of glial cells (non-neuronal cells, such as astrocytes) in the human brain is far higher than the number of neurons. The figure often given is 10 times higher, and some authors even speak of up to 50 times higher. But studies done over the past few years offer a far more conservative estimate: a ratio of around one to one. (more…)
Monday, 9 April 2012
Better Optical Illusions
Optical illusions are fascinating in many ways—they can create objects that cannot exist, movement in a static image, different colours with the same colour, and so on. They can also give us a better understanding of how the human visual system works, as witness this web site dedicated to the best optical illusions that scientists who study this subject have managed to devise in a contest that is held every year. (more…)
Monday, 2 April 2012
Meditation Can Reduce Stress
In a study published in 2007, people who practiced a method of meditation known as Integrative Body-Mind Training, or IBMT, for five days showed better attention and better ability to manage stress and its harmful effects than people in a control group who were given only relaxation training. (more…)