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Tintin in Neo Tokyo / Hergé x Otomo
More on RHB_RBS
Billion brain links map reveals clues about how we think
Scientists have created an elaborate map of more than a billion brain cell connections, helping to shed light on how memories are formed and recalled.
Their complex series of images are the first to illustrate how these vital connections are organised and could impact on our fundamental understanding of the brain.
Researchers also showed that this molecular map is altered in mice with features of autism and of schizophrenia, suggesting that it could provide vital insights on brain disorders.
The study focused on gaps between brain cells – known as synapses – that allow chemical and electrical messages to flow and are vital to healthy brain function.
This is the first time that such a map – called a synaptome – has been created across the entire brain.
Researchers led by the University’s Centre for Clinical Brain Sciences used cutting-edge techniques, including molecular imaging and artificial intelligence, to look at synapses across the mouse brain.
They studied sections of brain tissue engineered to emit light, allowing the scientists to see individual synapses in colour.
By tagging distinct types of molecules in each synapse by colour, they were able to detect a vivid pattern of synapses across the brain.
Running and jumping
Different groups of synapses were active depending on distinct behaviours of the mice – such as feeding, running and jumping.
Researchers say that the diversity of synapse types may be key to recalling information, helping the brain to quickly locate memories through patterns of its activity.
This finding could help scientists understand more about how memory problems develop.
The study also showed that mice bred to mirror aspects of autism and schizophrenia had altered synaptome maps and did not recall information properly.
This could open new avenues towards understanding many different brain diseases and behavioural conditions.
The study was funded by the European Research Council and Wellcome and is published in the journal, Neuron.
“There are more synapses in a human brain than there are stars in the galaxy. The brain is the most complex object we know of and understanding its connections at this level is a major step forward in unravelling its mysteries. In creating the first map of this kind, we were struck by the diversity of synapses and the exquisite patterns that they form. This map opens a wealth of new avenues of research that should transform our understanding of behaviour and brain disease.” - Professor Seth Grant, Centre for Clinical Brain Sciences
House on a River (Old House I), 1915, Egon Schiele
Photography by Paul Brouns
Kachō-ga fu 花鳥 画 譜 :
No. 3, Reed Bunting and Camellia (Jurin tsubaki じゅりん 椿)
No. 4, Kingfisher and Kerria Roses (Kawasemi, yamabuki かはせみ 山ぶき )
No. 5, Finches and Peach Blossoms (Bundori momo no hana ぶん鳥 桃花 )
The series Forty-eight Hawks Drawn from Life (Ikiutsushi shijûhachi taka 生うつし四十八鷹)
Nakayama Sūgakudō 中山嵩岳堂 – actif de 1850 à 1860. Source : mfa.org
Osaragi Jirō 大佛次郎 (1897-1973) writer, and his cat - Japan - 1930s
Source Twitter @polipofawysu
Heartbeats and Memory Suppression: The New Tools for Controlling Fear
Most of us feel afraid when faced with a threat or danger, but people with phobias and anxiety feel overwhelming levels of fear in situations that are relatively harmless. Scientists want to moderate this response by using drugs to wipe out scary memories or by harnessing the power of heartbeats to improve therapy.
Strong Dream, 1929, Paul Klee
Honda CX650 Custom
© Jean-Sébastien Dénommé
Sophia Loren, Los Angeles 1960
Evening on Judecca Island, Venice. Yuri Bondarenko. Canvas,Oil
Two bats flying (between 1830 and 1850)
WILLY WONKA & THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY (1971) dir. Mel Stuart
I’ve seen this movie a million times and didn’t remember this scene! Surprising to see an old-timey Japanese sweets shop. A few of these were new to me, so I decided to list them all up for anyone else who’s into wagashi.
いなかまんじゅう / inaka manju (country-style buns) [image]
むしまんじゅう / mushi manju (steamed buns) [image]
もなかまんじゅう / monaka manju (red bean in a… waffle cone) [image]
調布 / choufu (a thin pancake with mochi rice cake inside!) [image]
どらやき / dorayaki (thicker pancakes with red bean between) [image]
ウグイスもち / uguisu mochi (nightingale mochi - rice cake filled with red bean and dusted with green soybean powder) [image]
とらまき / toramaki (tiger rolls - a stripey patterned roll cake filled with white bean, cream, or banana(!))
Brain’s Tiniest Blood Vessels Trigger Spinal Motor Neurons to Develop
A new study has revealed that the human brain’s tiniest blood vessels can activate genes known to trigger spinal motor neurons, prompting the neurons to grow during early development. The findings could provide insights into how amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and other neurodegenerative disorders may develop.
To make the discovery, investigators re-created living tissues of the blood vessels and the spinal motor neurons—which control muscles—outside the body to show how they interact.
“Until now, people thought these blood vessels just delivered nutrients and oxygen, removed waste and adjusted blood flow. We showed that beyond plumbing, they are genetically communicating with the neurons,” said Samuel Sances, PhD, a postdoctoral fellow at the Cedars-Sinai Board of Governors Regenerative Medicine Institute. He is the first author of the study, published in the journal Stem Cell Reports.
When a human embryo is about 4 weeks old, Sances explained, new blood vessels begin to surround a primitive column of cells that eventually will become the spinal cord. Driven by developmental genes, some of these cells turn into spinal motor neurons. The study showed the cells of the brain’s smallest blood vessels, known as capillaries, are capable of activating these genes, which can spur spinal motor neurons to grow and mature.
Besides providing insights into human biology, the study opened a new pathway to unraveling the mysteries of disorders such as ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s disease, Sances said. ALS is a progressive, fatal disorder that kills motor neurons. There is no known cure. More than 6,000 people in the U.S. are diagnosed with the disorder each year, according to the ALS Association.
What may go wrong in the spinal neurons that causes the motor neurons to die?“ Sances asked. “If we can model an individual ALS patient’s tissues, we may be able to answer that question and one day rescue ALS patients’ neurons through new therapies.”
The study’s findings were made possible by a unique pairing of stem cell science with Organs-on-Chips technology, which re-creates human biology in microengineered environments.
Cedars-Sinai investigators first took samples of skin cells from adults and genetically reprogramed them into induced pluripotent stem cells, which can create any type of cell—in this case, spinal motor neurons and the lining of the brain’s capillaries. The team placed these cells in the tiny channels of Organ-Chips, which are made of flexible polymer and are about the size of AA batteries. In the chips, nurtured by special fluids, the cells of the two different tissues thrived and interacted with each other.
“This study told us something important about how our neurons develop,” said Clive Svendsen, PhD, professor of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, director of the Board of Governors Regenerative Medicine Institute and senior author of the study. As a next step, he added, investigators are developing plans to use chip technology to compare the vessel-neuron interactions in ALS patients against those of individuals without ALS.
The research is part of the new Patient-on-a-Chip program, a collaboration between Cedars-Sinai and Emulate Inc. in Boston to help predict which disease treatments would be most effective based on a patient’s genetic makeup and disease variant. Emulate produces the Organ-Chips used in the program. Geraldine A. Hamilton, PhD, Emulate’s president and chief scientific officer, is a co-author of the spinal motor neuron study.
In February, investigators from the two organizations announced they had used an Intestine-Chip to model a human intestinal lining.
The Patient-on-a-Chip program is an important initiative of Cedars-Sinai Precision Health, whose goal is to drive the development of the newest technology and best research, coupled with the finest clinical practice, to rapidly enable a new era of personalized health.
The art of Jae Cheol Park via
The Multiverse, Cinta Vidal (because)
Photography by photo_taku
Tony Ray-Jones © Royal Photographic Society/ National Media Museum
Does anything in this photograph look familiar? Help us find out where it was taken in 1967.