Watching 3D boosts your cognitive skills

The next time your 13-year-old nephew tries to tell you that 3D makes you smart, don't roll your eyes; nod your head.A new study in London did a bunch of cognitive tests on people and then had them watch 3D movies. On the more than 100 people in the experiment, the average results were after the 3D movie were:1. 23% increase in cognitive processing2. 11% boost in reaction timesThis is AFTER the movie, not during. The boost last about 20 minutes after the movie ended....more

80+-year-old woman trained her brain to outsmart people half her age

This is a great piece by 40-something Englishman Adam Shaw who went to Japan to report on personal brain training and was humiliated by an 80-something Japanese woman named Endo Tokiko who has been attending a "brain gym" three times a week for a while.The man who runs the program, Dr. Ryuta Kawashima, is a neuroscientists and the author of "Train Your Brain: 60 Days to a Better Brain." ...more

Brain damage repaired and partial vision restored with injectable hydrogel/stem cell therapy

Researchers from the University of Toronto were recently about to restore partial vision and repair brain damage in blind mice following strokes.Although stem cells are pretty amazing, but they often die after being transplanted or don't fuse with surrounding tissue. So these scientists (who had previously developed a hydrogel) used it to help the stem cells stick together during delivery to the transplant site and to help the stem cells survive.The mice got about 15% of their vision back....more

Younger people with Alzheimer's show non-memory-loss symptoms

When we think of Alzheimer's, the first symptom we conjure is almost always memory loss. But there's new research that indicates that younger people with Alzheimer's may not always experience memory loss as their first symptom.For younger people (under 60), they're more likely to have problems with judgement, language or visual and spatial awareness. ...more

Why girls often get diagnosed with autism later than boys

If you have a daughter (or other female relative) who is on the autism spectrum, you can probably figure out why girls often get diagnosed later than boys.A team of researchers at the Interactive Autism Network at Kennedy Krieger analyzed data from thousands of children with ASD and found that the symptoms differ by gender. Specifically:1. Girls struggled more with the ability to interpret social cues (though boys ages 10-15 were more likely than girls the same age to struggle with them)....more

Kids with ADHD more likely to have certain eating disorder

It's called "loss of control eating syndrome" (LOC-ES) and it's similar to binge eating. The condition appears to be linked to ADHD and they share a biological mechanism.Although kids who take stimulant meds for ADHD tend to lose weight, experts say there's a strong association between ADHD and obesity (and being overweight). Why?One theory is that the impulsivity that is usually found in ADHD is the same cause of the loss of control over eating....more

MRIs show reading to young kids activates their early reading skills

A team from Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center monitors the brains of 19 preschoolers (ages 3 to 5) using MRIs while they listened to stories on headphones.The parents of the 19 children gave information about how often they read to their children at home, among other interactions.Children whose parents read to them regularly had more activation in certain brain areas that are involved in getting meaning from language and mental imagery. The latter helps children visualize a story....more

These people changed their brains with neuroplasticity

Move over medicines and surgery! Professionals and amateurs alike are figuring out how to harness the power of neuroplasticity - the brain's ability to change in response to experience and stimuli - at ANY age.Case #1: (Parkinson's)...more

Autism improved by antiobiotics in some children

A man named John Rodakis saw significant improvements in his son's autism symptoms within 4 days of taking a 10-day course of amoxicillin.According to the father, the boy:1. started making eye contact (which he had previously avoided)2. had markedly improved speech (which was severely delayed)3. became less "rigid" in his demands to keep routines and sameness 4. had an enormous amount of energy, which he had "historically lacked"...more

Obesity in the elderly REDUCES dementia risk

Yep, you read the title correctly.A new study from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine looked at adults (average age 55 at baseline) over 20 years and found that:- adults who were underweight during middle age were 34% more likely to have dementia- middle-aged adults' risk declined as their BMI increased- severely obese adults were 29% less likely to develop dementiaThis was after accounting for other factors, like smoking and drinking alcohol.Here's what I read: