by Barbara Wheeler, NARSAD manager of communications and media relations
Check out the NARSAD newsfeed on our website! Here are a few of the week’s “must reads” from the feed and other notables:
NARSAD Investigator Makes Major Breakthrough in Understanding Brain Function
NARSAD Independent Investigator Louis-Eric Trudeau, Ph.D., and a team of researchers from the University of Montreal and McGill University have discovered a type of “cellular bilingualism” – a phenomenon that allows a single neuron to use two different methods of communication to exchange information. “Our work could facilitate the identification of mechanisms that disrupt the function of dopaminergic, serotonergic and cholinergic neurons in diseases such as schizophrenia, Parkinson’s and depression,” Dr. Trudeau said. The researchers found that many neurons in the brain are able to control cerebral activity by simultaneously using two chemical messengers – dopamine and glutamate.
NARSAD-Funded Research Cracks Molecular Code Regulating Neuronal Excitability
NARSAD Independent Investigator Paul Slesinger, Ph.D., and a team of biologists at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies have recently deciphered a molecular code that regulates availability of a brain channel that modulates neuronal excitability, a discovery that might aid efforts to treat drug addiction and brain and behavior disorders.
Docs warn about teens and ‘Facebook depression’
Add “Facebook depression” to potential harms linked with social media, an influential doctors’ group warns, referring to a condition it says may affect troubled teens who obsess over the online site. Researchers disagree on whether it’s simply an extension of depression some kids feel in other circumstances, or a distinct condition linked with using the online site.
Cold Spring, Minn., Mental Health Event in Honors Son
Kathy Robbins is turning personal tragedy into something positive by organizing a fundraiser for the treatment of mental illness, like the kind that took the life of her son, who committed suicide last year. The “Let the Sun Shine” run/walk for mental health on April 30 at St. Boniface Church in Cold Spring will be held in honor of Jonathon James Robbins, who was diagnosed with schizophrenia and depression. Proceeds from the event will benefit NARSAD.