by Barbara Wheeler, Brain & Behavior Research Foundation manager of communications and media relations
Check out the Brain & Behavior Research Foundation newsfeed on our website! Here are a few of the week’s “must reads” from the feed and other notables:
Announcing Our New Name: Brain & Behavior Research Foundation
The Brain & Behavior Research Foundation (formerly NARSAD, the National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and Depression) continues its 25-year mission to alleviate the suffering of mental illness by awarding grants that will lead to advances and breakthroughs in scientific research. One hundred percent of all donor contributions for research to the Foundation will continue to be invested in NARSAD Grants leading to discoveries in understanding causes and improving treatments of disorders in children and adults, such as depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and anxiety disorders like obsessive-compulsive and post-traumatic stress disorders. For a quarter of a century, the organization has awarded nearly $300 million worldwide to fund more than 3,300 scientists carefully selected by its prestigious Scientific Council.
Brain & Behavior Research Foundation Young Investigator Grantee Part of Team to Develop New Mouse Model for Understanding Autism
Foundation Grantee Jonathan Ting, Ph.D., is part of a team of researchers at MIT and Duke that has produced mice with two of the most common traits of autism – compulsive, repetitive behavior and avoidance of social interaction – by mutating a single gene. They further showed that this gene, which is also implicated in many cases of human autism, appears to produce autistic behavior by interfering with communication between brain cells.
Does Social Anxiety Disorder Respond to Psychotherapy? Brain Study Says Yes
Social anxiety is a common disorder, marked by overwhelming fears of interacting with others and expectations of being harshly judged. Medication and psychotherapy both help people with the disorder. But research on the neurological effects of psychotherapy has lagged far behind that on medication-induced changes in the brain. “We wanted to track the brain changes while people were going through psychotherapy,” says McMaster University Ph.D. candidate Vladimir Miskovic, the study’s lead author.
New Findings Reveal New Worlds In Neuroscience
We are living through an extraordinary period of discovery in neuroscience, analogous to the exuberant periods of theoretical physics a century ago or microbiology a half-century ago. The challenge is keeping up, navigating between the “infinitude of wisdom” and the “infinitude of error.”