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Feb 9, 2023

Transplanting a Gene Common in Centenarians Could Rewind The Heart’s Age

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, life extension

Age catches up with us all eventually, but in some people the right genes can make that chase into our twilight years a relatively leisurely one.

A few years ago Italian researchers discovered something special about people who live well into their 90s and beyond: they commonly have a version of a gene called BPIFB4 that protects against cardiovascular damage and keeps the heart in good shape for a longer period of time.

By introducing the mutated gene into older mice, the scientists have now seen how the variant rewinds markers of biological heart aging by the equivalent of more than 10 human years.

Feb 9, 2023

Physicists want to use gravitational waves to ‘see’ the beginning of time

Posted by in category: physics

Gravitational waves are ripples in the fabric of space. Waves that originated in the early universe could carry important information about the phenomena that occurred there.

Feb 8, 2023

Where is the mind within the brain? Transient selection of subnetworks by metabotropic receptors and G protein-gated ion channels

Posted by in category: neuroscience

I am proud to announce that today came out probably my most important scientific paper. I propose a whole new paradigm in neuroscience. To understand the mind, synapses are not so important any more. Instead, critical are some other type of proteins on the neural membrane. These proteins have the capability to transiently select subnetworks that will be functional in the next few seconds or minutes. The paradigm proposes that cognition emerges from those transient subnetwork selections (and not from network computations of the classical, so-called connectionist paradigm). The proteins in question are metabotropic receptor and G protein-gated ion channels. Simply put, we think with those proteins. A result of a thought is a new state of network pathways, not the activity of neurons.

One can download the paper here:


Perhaps the most important question posed by brain research is: How the brain gives rise to the mind. To answer this question, we have primarily relied on the connectionist paradigm: The brain’s entire knowledge and thinking skills are thought to be stored in the connections; and the mental operations are executed by network computations. I propose here an alternative paradigm: Our knowledge and skills are stored in metabotropic receptors (MRs) and the G protein-gated ion channels (GPGICs). Here, mental operations are assumed to be executed by the functions of MRs and GPGICs. As GPGICs have the capacity to close or open branches of dendritic trees and axon terminals, their states transiently re-route neural activity throughout the nervous system. First, MRs detect ligands that signal the need to activate GPGICs. Next, GPGICs transiently select a subnetwork within the brain. The process of selecting this new subnetwork is what constitutes a mental operation – be it in a form of directed attention, perception or making a decision. Synaptic connections and network computations play only a secondary role, supporting MRs and GPGICs. According to this new paradigm, the mind emerges within the brain as the function of MRs and GPGICs whose primary function is to continually select the pathways over which neural activity will be allowed to pass. It is argued that MRs and GPGICs solve the scaling problem of intelligence from which the connectionism paradigm suffers.

Feb 8, 2023

AI is deciphering a 2,000-year-old ‘lost book’ describing life after Alexander the Great

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

When Mount Vesuvius erupted in A.D. 79, it carbonized a book on rulers who followed Alexander the Great. Now, machine learning is deciphering the “lost book.”

Feb 7, 2023

MRI scans reveal changes in brains wiring after cold water shock

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, neuroscience

𝐅𝐨𝐫 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐟𝐢𝐫𝐬𝐭 𝐭𝐢𝐦𝐞, 𝐚 𝐭𝐞𝐚𝐦 𝐨𝐟 𝐫𝐞𝐬𝐞𝐚𝐫𝐜𝐡𝐞𝐫𝐬 𝐡𝐚𝐬 𝐨𝐛𝐬𝐞𝐫𝐯𝐞𝐝 𝐜𝐡𝐚𝐧𝐠𝐞𝐬 𝐢𝐧 𝐡𝐨𝐰 𝐝𝐢𝐟𝐟𝐞𝐫𝐞𝐧𝐭 𝐩𝐚𝐫𝐭𝐬 𝐨𝐟 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐛𝐫𝐚𝐢𝐧 𝐢𝐧𝐭𝐞𝐫𝐚𝐜𝐭 𝐰𝐢𝐭𝐡 𝐞𝐚𝐜𝐡 𝐨𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐫 𝐚𝐟𝐭𝐞𝐫 𝐚 𝐩𝐞𝐫𝐬𝐨𝐧’𝐬 𝐛𝐨𝐝𝐲 𝐢𝐬 𝐢𝐦𝐦𝐞𝐫𝐬𝐞𝐝 𝐢𝐧 𝐜𝐨𝐥𝐝 𝐰𝐚𝐭𝐞𝐫. 𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐟𝐢𝐧𝐝𝐢𝐧𝐠𝐬 𝐞𝐱𝐩𝐥𝐚𝐢𝐧 𝐰𝐡𝐲 𝐩𝐞𝐨𝐩𝐥𝐞 𝐨𝐟𝐭𝐞𝐧 𝐟𝐞𝐞𝐥 𝐦𝐨𝐫𝐞 𝐮𝐩𝐛𝐞𝐚𝐭 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐚𝐥𝐞𝐫𝐭 𝐚𝐟𝐭𝐞𝐫 𝐬𝐰𝐢𝐦𝐦𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐨𝐮𝐭𝐬𝐢𝐝𝐞 𝐨𝐫 𝐭𝐚𝐤𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐜𝐨𝐥𝐝 𝐛𝐚𝐭𝐡𝐬.

During a research trial, the results of which are published in the journal Biology, healthy volunteers were given a functional MRI (fMRI) scan immediately after bathing in cold water. These scans revealed changes in the connectivity between the parts of the brain that process emotions.


For the first time, a team of researchers has observed changes in how different parts of the brain interact with each other after a person’s body is immersed in cold water. The findings explain why people often feel more upbeat and alert after swimming outside or taking cold baths.

Continue reading “MRI scans reveal changes in brains wiring after cold water shock” »

Feb 7, 2023

Microsoft launches the new Bing, with ChatGPT built in

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

“It’s a new day for search,” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said today. For 13 years now, Microsoft has tried to get you to use Bing, but you didn’t want to, so its global market share remains in the low single digits. Now, the company is pulling out all the stops in an effort to better compete with Google. Today, at a press event in Redmond, Washington, Microsoft announced its long-rumored integration of OpenAI’s GPT-4 model into Bing, providing a ChatGPT-like experience within the search engine.

The company is also launching a new version of its Edge browser today, with these new AI features built into the sidebar.

Feb 6, 2023

Prolific autism researcher has two dozen papers retracted

Posted by in category: neuroscience

𝐏𝐫𝐨𝐥𝐢𝐟𝐢𝐜 𝐚𝐮𝐭𝐢𝐬𝐦 𝐫𝐞𝐬𝐞𝐚𝐫𝐜𝐡𝐞𝐫 𝐡𝐚𝐬 𝐭𝐰𝐨 𝐝𝐨𝐳𝐞𝐧 𝐩𝐚𝐩𝐞𝐫𝐬 𝐫𝐞𝐭𝐫𝐚𝐜𝐭𝐞𝐝

An autism researcher lost two dozen papers to retraction in January, eight years after the publisher was made aware of potentially troubling editorial practices. Elsevier, the publisher, cited undisclosed conflicts of interest, duplicated methodology and a “compromised” peer-review process as reasons for the retractions.

The papers were published in Research in Developmental Disabilities and Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders between 2013 and 2014 — a period when Johnny Matson, then professor of psychology at Louisiana State University (LSU) in Baton Rouge and an author on all of the papers, was editor-in-chief of both journals.

Continue reading “Prolific autism researcher has two dozen papers retracted” »

Feb 5, 2023

Blobs of human brain planted in rats offer new treatment hope

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, neuroscience

The team behind the work suggest that eventually doctors might be able to grow blobs of brain tissue from a patient’s own cells in the lab and use them to repair brain injuries caused by stroke or trauma.

“This is incredibly exciting to me as a physician,” said Isaac Chen, a physician and assistant professor of neurosurgery at the University of Pennsylvania.

The study is the latest in the rapidly growing and ethically complex field of brain organoids. Scientists have shown that when cultivated in the right conditions, neurons begin to form tiny brain-like structures, allowing scientists to investigate developmental conditions such as autism and a wide range of basic neuroscience questions.

Feb 5, 2023

Goodbye coffee, hello brain stimulation? People are zapping their brains at home to clear brain fog

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, neuroscience

𝐏𝐞𝐨𝐩𝐥𝐞 𝐚𝐫𝐞 𝐳𝐚𝐩𝐩𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐢𝐫 𝐛𝐫𝐚𝐢𝐧𝐬 𝐚𝐭 𝐡𝐨𝐦𝐞 𝐭𝐨 𝐢𝐦𝐩𝐫𝐨𝐯𝐞 𝐟𝐨𝐜𝐮𝐬 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐜𝐥𝐞𝐚𝐫 𝐛𝐫𝐚𝐢𝐧 𝐟𝐨𝐠. 𝐁𝐮𝐭 𝐢𝐬 𝐢𝐭 𝐬𝐚𝐟𝐞?

In 2021, Craig Gibbons was diagnosed with Lyme disease. His doctor prescribed him antibiotics, but the medication failed to eliminate one of his most debilitating symptoms: a lasting brain fog that made it difficult for him to focus or recall information.

So he went with a different approach: at-home brain stimulation.

Continue reading “Goodbye coffee, hello brain stimulation? People are zapping their brains at home to clear brain fog” »

Feb 4, 2023

Ideal blood pressure may remodel brain clearance pathways linked to brain health, dementia

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, health, neuroscience

𝐈𝐝𝐞𝐚𝐥 𝐛𝐥𝐨𝐨𝐝 𝐩𝐫𝐞𝐬𝐬𝐮𝐫𝐞 𝐦𝐚𝐲 𝐫𝐞𝐦𝐨𝐝𝐞𝐥 𝐛𝐫𝐚𝐢𝐧 𝐜𝐥𝐞𝐚𝐫𝐚𝐧𝐜𝐞 𝐩𝐚𝐭𝐡𝐰𝐚𝐲𝐬 𝐥𝐢𝐧𝐤𝐞𝐝 𝐭𝐨 𝐛𝐫𝐚𝐢𝐧 𝐡𝐞𝐚𝐥𝐭𝐡, 𝐝𝐞𝐦𝐞𝐧𝐭𝐢𝐚

𝘾𝙡𝙤𝙨𝙚 𝙧𝙚𝙫𝙞𝙚𝙬 𝙤𝙛 𝙈𝙍𝙄 𝙨𝙘𝙖𝙣𝙨 𝙛𝙤𝙪𝙣𝙙 𝙢𝙤𝙧𝙚 𝙞𝙣𝙩𝙚𝙣𝙨𝙞𝙫𝙚 𝙝𝙞𝙜𝙝 𝙗𝙡𝙤𝙤𝙙 𝙥𝙧𝙚𝙨𝙨𝙪𝙧𝙚 𝙩𝙧𝙚𝙖𝙩𝙢𝙚𝙣𝙩 (𝙩𝙖𝙧𝙜𝙚𝙩𝙚𝙙 𝙩𝙤 𝙖𝙘𝙝𝙞𝙚𝙫𝙚 𝙖 𝙨𝙮𝙨𝙩𝙤𝙡𝙞𝙘 𝙥𝙧𝙚𝙨𝙨𝙪𝙧𝙚 𝙡𝙚𝙨𝙨 𝙩𝙝𝙖𝙣 120 𝙢𝙢 𝙃𝙜) 𝙬𝙖𝙨 𝙢𝙤𝙧𝙚 𝙚𝙛𝙛𝙚𝙘𝙩𝙞𝙫𝙚 𝙩𝙝𝙖𝙣 𝙖 𝙡𝙚𝙨𝙨-𝙞𝙣𝙩𝙚𝙣𝙨𝙚 𝙩𝙧𝙚𝙖𝙩𝙢𝙚𝙣𝙩 𝙜𝙤𝙖𝙡 𝙤𝙛 140 𝙢𝙢 𝙃𝙜 𝙨𝙮𝙨𝙩𝙤𝙡𝙞𝙘 𝙞𝙣 𝙖𝙘𝙝𝙞𝙚𝙫𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙖 𝙥𝙤𝙨𝙞𝙩𝙞𝙫𝙚 𝙨𝙩𝙧𝙪𝙘𝙩𝙪𝙧𝙖𝙡 𝙘𝙝𝙖𝙣𝙜𝙚 𝙞𝙣 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙗𝙧𝙖𝙞𝙣’𝙨 𝙥𝙚𝙧𝙞𝙫𝙖𝙨𝙘𝙪𝙡𝙖𝙧 𝙨𝙥𝙖𝙘𝙚𝙨: 𝙥𝙖𝙩𝙝𝙬𝙖𝙮𝙨 𝙩𝙝𝙖𝙩 𝙖𝙧𝙚 𝙞𝙢𝙥𝙤𝙧𝙩𝙖𝙣𝙩 𝙩𝙤 𝙘𝙡𝙚𝙖𝙧𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙩𝙤𝙭𝙞𝙣𝙨 𝙖𝙣𝙙 𝙤𝙩𝙝𝙚𝙧 𝙗𝙮𝙥𝙧𝙤𝙙𝙪𝙘𝙩𝙨.

𝙄𝙛 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙗𝙧𝙖𝙞𝙣 𝙘𝙖𝙣𝙣𝙤𝙩 𝙥𝙧𝙤𝙥𝙚𝙧𝙡𝙮 𝙘𝙡𝙚𝙖𝙧 𝙢𝙚𝙩𝙖𝙗𝙤𝙡𝙞𝙘 𝙗𝙮𝙥𝙧𝙤𝙙𝙪𝙘𝙩𝙨, 𝙩𝙝𝙚𝙮 𝙖𝙘𝙘𝙪𝙢𝙪𝙡𝙖𝙩𝙚 𝙖𝙣𝙙 𝙢𝙖𝙮 𝙘𝙤𝙣𝙩𝙧𝙞𝙗𝙪𝙩𝙚 𝙩𝙤 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙙𝙚𝙫𝙚𝙡𝙤𝙥𝙢𝙚𝙣𝙩 𝙤𝙛 𝙙𝙚𝙢𝙚𝙣𝙩𝙞𝙖, 𝙧𝙚𝙨𝙚𝙖𝙧𝙘𝙝𝙚𝙧𝙨 𝙨𝙖𝙞𝙙.

Continue reading “Ideal blood pressure may remodel brain clearance pathways linked to brain health, dementia” »

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