Author: DynamicBrain Inc.
Publication: Monthly Newsletter
Published Date: July 19, 2019
Brain plasticity has played a crucial role in the success of cochlear implants, which enable profoundly deaf individuals to hear. In the late 1980s, it was our very own Dr. Merzenich who led the team that developed the cochlear implant.
The next step is to bring sight to the blind. While scientists are making progress using other solutions such as gene therapy to restructure retinas, vision implants seem to be the most promising next step because of the success of the cochlear implant. In a new study, scientists have partially restored vision to six blind people via an implant that transmits video images directly to the visual cortex, bypassing the eye and optic nerve.
That’s the power of brain plasticity! And while we are waiting for more success stories, let’s take advantage of one that requires no invasive surgery, costs only as much as a couple of coffees a month, and is proven to significantly improve cognitive functions—BrainHQ!
Avoiding friendly fire
Kind regards,Frieda Fanni
DynamicBrain Inc. is the Canadian partner of Posit Science Corporation providing brain fitness program BrainHQ in English and French.
Strokes are the leading cause of disability in the USA and Canada. It would make sense to focus on repairing stroke-damaged nerve cells after a stroke, but researchers at Stanford have taken an unconventional approach. They focused on suppressing immune cells that act as first-responders to a stroke. These cells have an inflammatory feature that may cause more harm than good. The findings showed a reduction in brain damage, an increased survival rate, and improved motor performance in mice.
Learn more about the research here
Sleep like the fishes
Did you know that, thanks to a small, transparent fish, we can learn more about what happens when mammals sleep? Zebrafish have transparent skin, and since in this study they have been genetically engineered to light up when nerve cells and muscles are active, scientists can observe what happens in their bodies while they sleep. Researchers hope this study will further their understanding of sleep patterns and help millions of people suffering from insomnia!
Find out more about the sleepy zebrafish here
Polluting the brain
Scientists discovered a potential link between pollution, neurological diseases, and interestingly, our sense of smell! Looking at the role of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), researchers have found that CSF could be essential to clear waste from building up in the brain. Research suggests pollution damages the olfactory sensory neurons, which in turn affects the CSF. This could have a knock-on effect for the development of neurological diseases.
Learn more here