Health and wellness by Dr Corey Kirshner

Finding the Cause of Your Peripheral Neuropathy

September 28, 2016 / Conditions / By Corey Kirshner
Trying to explain what peripheral neuropathy is, and how finding the cause of your peripheral neuropathy is essential to your successful treatment, may seem daunting in the space of a blog post. At times it can be a very easy condition to address and fix, but more frequently it is very complex.

Peripheral neuropathy means the nerves outside of your spinal cord are damaged. Although often related to diseases like diabetes, the nerve damage ultimately comes from one of five things.

Five common causes of Peripheral Neuropathy:

1. Nerves are not getting enough nutrients (fuel) to stay healthy.

2. Nerves are not being activated, or used enough to stay healthy.

3. Nerves are being deprived of oxygen.

4. Nerves are being compressed, and from the point of compression on down, they are dying because of a lack of fuel, oxygen or activation.

5. Or, you are suffering from a combination of all of the above.

Depending upon the cause of your peripheral neuropathy, and which nerves are affected, you will eventually have symptoms like pain, tingling and numbness predominately in your feet, but it may spread to your hands as well. As nerves continue to die these symptoms will worsen and start to affect other tissue. The most commonly affected is the cerebellum, the part of your brain that controls eye movement, balance, and coordination of movement, so it is not coincidental that along with your peripheral neuropathy you may also have trouble balancing.

Try this test: stand in a relaxed manner, putting more weight on your left foot, then try to place your right foot on the floor directly in front of the left, touching the right heal to the left toe. Were you able to keep your balance? Now switch sides and try again? You should not wobble.

Pain is a normal, natural and essential sensation for your body to experience. It tells you something is wrong. Medications may truly give you relief from your pain symptoms, but relief only occurs while taking the medication; it masks symptoms for as long as you continue taking it. When you stop, you are still left with the underlying condition – your peripheral neuropathy. It has not been cured. And what’s worse, the entire time your symptoms and pain were being masked there is a good chance your nerves degenerated further. The purpose of medication is to change your brain chemistry NOT find the root cause of your symptoms. How will you ever regain healthy nerves if you don’t find which of the 5 causes of peripheral neuropathy you are suffering from?

Patient A and Patient B both suffered from peripheral neuropathy. Both had symptoms that were continuing to worsen. Patient A was 57 and Patient B was 62. Both were on Lyrica to minimize pain yet, their pain was slowly increasing, especially the burning foot pain at night.

Patient A suffered from diabetes and blood tests also revealed macrocytic anemia. Both conditions can deprive nerves of adequate fuel and oxygen. Knowing 2 of the causes of peripheral neuropathy are a lack of fuel (nutrients) and a lack of oxygen to the nerves, a fairly simple treatment plan was developed for Patient A. One which got his blood sugar under control and supported the efficient transport of oxygen rich blood. Within 4 months Patient A related that his peripheral neuropathy pain was gone, his use of Lyrica eliminated, and his blood sugar which was 160-180 with meds before treatment was reduced to 85-110 after treatment enabling him to decrease is diabetes medication by 75%.

Patient B, also diabetic, presented a more complex case. In addition to his diabetes, his initial examination showed he was suffering from loss of “wide diameter afferent neurons.” These nerves, when healthy, block pain. With this information treatment was directed to stabilize blood sugar and improve activation of these “wide diameter afferent nerves.” It was explained to Patient B that this treatment would take longer to see results. Five months into the care he related an 80% reduction of pain intensity and he was able to sleep at night with no pain.

Even though their peripheral neuropathy symptoms seemed the same, it took a careful individual assessment to find the underlying cause or causes in each case. Finding the cause of your peripheral neuropathy is the first step in a successful, drug free plan to improve nerve health and live a pain free life.

Why Are My Hands and Feet Always Cold?
September 28, 2016 / Conditions / By Corey Kirshner

Why Are My Hands and Feet Always Cold?

It’s a warm and slightly humid 82 degree end of summer kind of day. Bright sun, kids heading back to school, thoughts of reorganizing and cleaning out the house are pervasive as we move from one season to the next. If you look carefully the outer tips of leaves are starting to change, some have even begun to fall bringing with them thoughts of apple picking, football and pumpkins. A wonderful stirring of emotions until you remember this seasonal change brings with it a drop in temperature and the longing for spring when your hands and feet will be warm again. Unfortunately, some of us don’t even enjoy the reprieve of summer; we spend our days wondering “why are my hands and feet always cold?”

Contrary to popular belief cold hands and feet don’t just happen, they are a symptom of something not working optimally in your body that the warmest of mittens won’t fix. Although there can be a number of CAUSES for your cold hands and feet, it’s important not to fall too quickly into the trap of focusing on one single thing as the culprit.

Possible causes of cold hands and feet:

Anemia and other nutritional deficiencies

Autoimmune diseases like Raynaud’s and Hashimoto’s
Over active sympathetic nerves
Hormonal imbalances
Thyroid Dysfunction
Chances are you have been researching your condition and understand my caution when reading the above list. For those new to this information let me explain. All of the conditions listed have the ability to cause cold hands and feet on their own BUT they are most often intertwined with one another. We refer to this as a “web of physiologic dysfunction.” For instance, thyroid dysfunction occurs in approximately 30% of women, some will have anemia and cold hands and feet, or the autoimmune condition known as Raynaud’s and an inability to lose weight, others may be experiencing digestive disorders and depression along with their cold hands and feet. So, again it is essential to consider all the possible culprits.

Let’s look at some of the possibilities more closely starting with thyroid conditions.

As mentioned, 30% of women in the US suffer from thyroid related issues. Your thyroid gland controls your metabolism. Metabolism is your body’s process for turning food into energy. If your thyroid is sluggish your metabolism slows down and so do all of the systems of your body that depend upon it. Cold hands and feet can easily be attributed to poor blood flow to peripheral nerves as a result of faulty metabolism. Other metabolic break downs may appear as hair loss, weight gain, depression, fatigue and digestive disorders.

80% of thyroid related issues actually stem from an autoimmune condition call Hashimoto’s. What does that mean for you? Your thyroid symptoms, fatigue, depression, hair loss, dry skin, digestive disorders and yes, cold hands and feet are secondary to an autoimmune condition. Meaning you generally won’t have one without the other. The web of physiologic dysfunction is in play here. If your thyroid condition is treated without considering the autoimmune component or vice versa there is a high probability you will continue to suffer and allow the underlying cause to wreak havoc on your body.

Anemia, hormonal imbalances and nerve issues, all of which may be related to metabolic breakdown, are also listed above as possible culprits of your cold hands and feet. But as you are learning, these may be the primary problem causing your symptoms OR the secondary problem; remember the role the web of physiologic dysfunction plays in your health. The relationship of anemia in thyroid sufferers is well documented, with some studies claiming as many as 43% of hypothyroid patients having some type of anemia.

In reality you are suffering from two things: the SYMPTOMS – cold hands and feet, and the underlying CAUSES of your condition.

The biggest pitfalls in your care will be treating the symptoms as the problem, and focusing only on one possible cause. Avoid these pitfalls and stop asking “Why are my hands and feet always cold?” Get proper testing, including a complete thyroid panel (not just TSH) with thyroid antibodies, check Vitamin D levels, as low Vitamin D is a precursor for many diseases including autoimmune conditions, and when indicated, test for intestinal permeability, a condition that will cause significant nutritional deficits.

Wouldn’t it be a nice change to enjoy a mug of warm apple cider because of the sweet, spicy dance it performs on your tongue instead of holding onto it for dear life as your hand warmer?

Why Can’t I Eat Anything Without Feeling Sick?
September 28, 2016 / Conditions / By Corey Kirshner
One of the most commonly asked questions among IBS, Crohn’s & Colitis patients is “Why can’t I eat anything without feeling sick?” Typically when people are intolerant to may foods they will direct their attention to the “what” question. “What can I eat? What will calm down the reaction? What do I take to settle my stomach?” Answering the “what” question will lead to many “solutions” but will not uncover the underlying cause. “What” solutions are many: restrict your diet, take pills and acid blockers, get tested for food allergies. Or, you can start asking Why you can’t eat anything without feeling sick.

By asking why you can’t eat anything without feeling sick , you are seeking the root cause of your condition, not just a resolution to the effects or symptoms from your condition. Although there are other possible reasons you may be reacting to everything you eat, one of the most common causes is a condition called Intestinal Permeability, or Leaky Gut. Your digestive tract begins with your mouth and ends with, well, your other end. Each part of the system has a specific job, from ingesting food to excreting it, the system is finely tuned to keep your body functioning properly. The job of the small intestine, where Leaky Gut can occur is to breakdown the proteins, fats and carbohydrates from the foods you eat before they enter your blood stream to nourish all the cells of your body. A healthy small intestine is lined with densely packed cells that act as a filter for the broken down particles. The space between these cells are referred to as junctions. A healthy intestine will have tight junctions or a very fine filter. Like the screens in your house, the junctions create a barrier that are meant to let the good stuff in while keeping the bad stuff out. Large undigested particles of food, parasites, and bacteria are all able to pass through the weakened junctions of a leaky gut which alerts the body to a foreign invader causing an inflammatory reaction.

Systemic inflammatory reactions related to Intestinal Permeability:

Nonspecific joint pain
Brain fog
Fatigue
Skin issues
Bloating
Constipation
Diarrhea
Without fixing this barrier, you will develop more food intolerances and more systemic inflammatory reactions.

Going back to the most important question-Why? Why would you have Intestinal Permeability? This question has many answers. Foods sensitivities, low Vitamin D, intestinal parasites, medications, stress, and hyperthyroid or hypothyroid are all known culprits. From these culprits your barrier system will be affected in stages, starting with localized inflammation of the intestinal lining. As the lining continues to degrade your whole immune system will join the battle and, even though the damage is confined to the gut, the whole body immune/inflammatory reaction may cause symptoms anywhere in the body. Brain fog, skin conditions like acne or eczema, headaches, joint pain, and of course food sensitivities are all inflammatory reactions to Leaky Gut. As leaky gut progresses even further you will develop an accumulation of lipopolysaccharides locally in the gut, which is basically an overgrowth of bad bacteria or sludge on the intestinal wall which further affects the inflammatory process and inhibits digestion, creating a state of malnutrition.

By allowing the condition to persist you are seriously hindering any chance of regaining health. There are tests available to determine if you have Intestinal Permeability and what type you may have. Uncovering this roadblock will help to answer the question “Why can’t I eat anything without feeling sick?”

Dr. Kirshner holds Free Workshops where you can learn more about your condition and how to control it without medication.

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How To Heal Your Metabolism , reset your hormones and make you feel young

How To Heal Your Metabolism

How to Heal Your Metabolism

Lately, as many of you know I have been deep in reading and researching about the systems of the body, healing the body, nutrients, foods that heal and how they are all related in increasing metabolic function.  I think we can agree that we would all like to increase our metabolism…right?  As we get older we are led to believe that our metabolism will just naturally slow down.  We will have to work harder and eat less just to stay thin and feel good about ourselves.  Do these statements ring true to you?  They certainly did for me…of course, until now.

Here are ELEVEN things that will help increase cellular respiration and help heal your metabolism.

  1. Stop dieting
  2. Reduce all other toxins
  3. Get more Sleep
  4. Get more Sunlight
  5. Decrease polyunsaturated fats (PUFA) in meats
  6. Decrease phytoestrogens (soy)
  7. Increase saturated fats in coconut oil
  8. Eat the right types of carbohydrates (sugars) in ripe fruits, root vegetables
  9. Eat the right type of protein in eggs and white fish
  10. Increasing Carbon dioxide (C02) by eating baking soda or carbonated water

You see, for many years, I believed the only way that I could increase my metabolic expenditure (increase calories burned) was to add more muscle to my body and/or to exert more energy through increased exercise load and intensity.  However, there is actually a third way to increase your metabolism.  One that is not discussed very often, either because people do not know about it or they just do not understand it.  Are you wondering what it is?  Oh, I bet you are…

Over the last few years of my studies, I have begun to look at the body and its functions very differently.  I have realized that the health of our metabolism is more than just how much we move and how much muscle we have; a healthy metabolism is about what is happening in every cell of our body and the actual respiration of every cell of our body.  Thus, if we can increase cellular respiration we can increase metabolic function.

First, what is cellular respiration?

Cellular respiration is the set of the metabolic reactions and processes that take place in the cells of organisms to convert biochemical energy from nutrients into adenosine triphosphate (ATP), and then release waste products.

Basically, it is what happens when glucose (sugar) enters the cells and converts to usable energy.  Without getting too scientific, it’s the most efficient way for cells to harvest energy stored in food.

Cellular respiration has three main stages: glycolysis, the Kreb’s cycle, and the electron transport chain.  For all the geeks, here is a basic explanation of each, for everyone else, skip ahead…

  1. Glycolysis is the metabolic process occurring in the cytosol of your cells that converts glucose (sugar) into two pyruvate molecules.  Glycolysis is an anaerobic (does not require oxygen) reaction that has an end production of 2 ATP (ATP is usable energy) molecules.
  2. Kreb’s Cycle (Citric Acid Cycle) is an aerobic (requires oxygen) reaction that occurs in the mitochondria of every cell in your body.  The mitochondria are referred to as the cell’s power plant because they produce most of the cells supply of ATP (energy). Once oxygen is present, Acetyl Co A is produced from the two pyruvate molecules.  Through an 8-step process 6 NADH, 2 FADH2, and 2 ATP are formed (yes, I know you have no idea what this means…but keep reading, it will all make sense soon).
  3. 3. Electron Transport Chain (ETC) is also an aerobic reaction occurring in the mitochondria.  The ETC transports electrons from donors (like NADH and FADH2) to acceptors (like Oxygen).   When working properly the Kreb’s cycle and the ETC produce most of the cells energy.  The end result is an additional 34 ATP.  As you can see we need adequate amount of glucose, oxygen and a healthy mitochondria to produce sufficient amounts of energy…without these our cells become inefficient and eventually die.

Have I lost you with all this scientific jargon?  Stick with me; things will start to come together soon…

What I want you to see is when everything is working optimally and our cells are getting adequate glucose and oxygen we produce lots of energy (increased cellular respiration).  With increased cellular respiration our metabolism increases.  A great running metabolism means we are meeting our body’s energy needs, we are repairing tissue, we are detoxing properly, we have proper hormone function, we have good energy, we feel happy and life is good.

Did you ever have a friend when you were young who was thin, didn’t workout and could eat whatever she wanted and never gain a pound?  You know, that friend you hated… we will call her Britch.   Britch had great cellular respiration.  It is not the amount of muscle she had or the amount of exercise or activity she did that kept her thin.  Her increased metabolic function came from great cellular respiration.  However, if Britch continued to live her crappy-eating, non-exercising lifestyle her cells would become damaged and her lifestyle would catch up to her.

Many of us would attribute this phenomenon to great genes.   This is partially true since our mitochondria has its own set of DNA.   However, we can help or harm the health of our cellular respiration through the foods we eat, the lifestyles we choose and the decisions we make.  So even if you were not born with great mitochondrial genes you can still improve OR worsen your cells energy production.

  1. Decrease polyunsaturated fats (PUFA).  As I have discussed before PUFAs are highly unstable and oxidize easily in the body.  PUFAs cause mitochondrial damage and reduce respiration.  PUFAs also bind to the same protein receptors that transport your thyroid hormone, reducing thyroid usage…which, once again, has an adverse effect on your cells respiration.  Some examples of PUFA’s are vegetable oils, corn oils, seed oils, nut oils, fish oils, most nuts and seeds and most conventional meats.
  2. Decrease phytoestrogens (soy). An increased level of phytoestrogens increases free fatty acids (FFA) in the body.  FFA acids are known to inhibit the thyroid function and disrupt glucose metabolism.  Soy, like PUFAs, lowers cellular respiration.
  3. Increase saturated fats. Yes, you heard me.  Increasing the right types of saturated fats like coconut oil, organic butter or ghee, cocoa butter, raw organic dairy, and grass fed meats can be very beneficial for your cells.  Saturated fats are stable. Unlike PUFAs, saturated fats bind to proteins in the correct way.  They are used properly and do not break down causing damage to mitochondria genes (DNA).
  4. Eat the right types of carbohydrates (sugars). I know everyone is scared of the words carbohydrate and sugar these days.  You would think by telling you to consume them, it is like telling you to go jump off a bridge.  We must understand not all carbohydrates (sugars) are created equal.  When I say the right types of carbs or sugars, I am referring to ripe fruits, root vegetables, organic raw dairy, pulp free OJ and some low starch above ground vegetables.  I am not referring to processed cookies, crackers, grains, breads and candies.   Sugar is the bodies preferred source of energy.  When we use the right sugars to fuel our cells they produce the most energy by using the least amount of our own bodies resources.  When we use a less optimal fuel (like protein or fat) our body uses more resources to produce less energy.
  5. Eat the right type of protein. Consuming easily digestible proteins like organic beef broth, gelatin, white fish, eggs, dairy and shellfish help support the liver and thyroid.  Increase thyroid hormone increases mitochondria respiration and increases CO2 production.
  6. Increasing Carbon dioxide (C02). C02 helps increase cellular respiration.  You can increase your C02 levels by living at high altitudes (Denver, you are all set), bag breathing, ingesting or bathing in baking soda and increasing your intake of carbonated water.
  7. The right exercise.  Stressful exercise increases mitochondrial damage.  Long duration cardio is incredibly stressful to the body.  Endurance athletes, although fit, have decreased cellular function, you can see this in their very low pulse and low body temperature.  According to Dr. Ray Peat “concentric” weight training is actually restorative to the cells mitochondria.  This means lifting with a load and relaxing without a load.  Burst training (short burst of exercise followed by rest) is also supportive of a healthy metabolism.
  8. Get more Sunlight. According to Dr. Ray Peat, “It turns out that day light 
stimulates our ability to use oxygen for energy production, and
 protects our tissues from some of the free-radical toxins that are
 produced by normal metabolism, by stress, or by radiation.”   This does not mean lay in the sun for 10 hours/day.  Refer to my blog on Vitamin D to help decide how much sun you need.
  9. Get more Sleep. Getting restorative sleep helps with proper cellular function.  This can mean anywhere from 6- 10 hours depending on the person.  Deep sleep is better than more sleep.  Best hours for sleeping are between the hours of 10:30PM -6:30AM.  When the body is at rest its primary energy source should be fat.  Burning fat while sleeping is far less harmful to the cells than oxidizing it while working out.  Remember to optimize energy production sugars should be used while awake and fats should be used while asleep.
  10. Stop dieting. Dieting, starvation, and detox programs may all help you lose weight fast and help you feel better in the short run.  However, long term they are all doing the same thing…they damage your mitochondria and decrease cellular respiration.  Have you ever wondered why ever time you “diet” it gets a little harder to lose weight?  It’s because “dieting”deprives our cells of proper energy and nutrients, damaging our cells and decreasing metabolism.
  11. Reduce all other toxins.  Remove as many toxins from your life as possible.  This includes processed foods, trans-fats, high fructose corn syrup, additives, preservatives, carrageenan, hormones, anti-biotics, drugs, alcohol, environmental toxins, fluoride, pesticides, herbicides, mercury, radiation, etc.  All toxins will disrupt and interfere with proper cell function.  All toxins will lower cellular respiration.

Okay, you got all that?  Yes, I know this is a lot to take in.  And yes, I know some of you may think I am crazy.  This is totally okay with me.  However, what you should know is everything I write about is based on the physiology of the human body, scientific research and my own self-experimentation.   I am not here to tell you what you should or should not do.  My intentions for giving you this information is to only share with you what I am learning, and how it is helping not only myself, but also many of my clients.

Please understand the recommendations I am giving are not person specific.  Every person is different, is at a different state of health and has different needs.  You must also understand that healing the body on a cellular level takes time, a real commitment to wanting to get better and a belief that you are doing the right thing.  There is so much misinformation on health and nutrition out there, it is hard to know what to believe anymore.  In fact, you should question everything you learn, including me.  It is important that you investigate on your own, find out what works for you, ask lots questions, and get help from a professional if you feel you need it.  For more information on how to heal your metabolism…Buy The BOOK.

Happy healing!

Your Optimal Health Coach,

Kate

“Disclaimer:  I am an exercise physiologist, personal trainer, nutritional and lifestyle coach, not a medical doctor.  I do not diagnose, prescribe for, treat or claim to prevent, mitigate or cure any human disease or physical problem. I do not provide diagnosis, care treatment or rehabilitation of individuals, nor apply medical, mental health or human development principles.  I do not prescribe prescription drugs nor do I tell you to discontinue them.  I provide physical and dietary suggestions to improve health and wellness and to nourish and support normal function and structure of the body.  If you suspect any disease please consult your physician.”

References:

  1. Mitochondria and Mortality.  Dr. Ray Peat
  2. Energy structure and carbon dioxide: A realistic view of the organism. Dr. Ray Peat
  3. Using Sunlight to Sustain Life.  Dr. Ray Peat
  4. The acute phase response and exercise: the ultra marathon as prototype exercise. Clin J Sport Med. 2001 Jan;11(1):38-43.
  5. Systemic inflammatory response to exhaustive exercise. Cytokine kinetics.
Suzuki K, Nakaji S, Yamada M, Totsuka M, Sato K, Sugawara K.  Exerc Immunol Rev. 2002;8:6-48.
  6. Inhibition of NADH-linked mitochondrial respiration by 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal.
Humphries KM, Yoo Y, Szweda LI.  Biochemistry. 1998 Jan 13;37(2):552-7.
  7. 4-Hydroxy-2(E)-nonenal inhibits CNS mitochondrial respiration at multiple sites.
Picklo MJ, Amarnath V, McIntyre JO, Graham DG, Montine TJ.  J Neurochem. 1999 Apr;72(4):1617-24.
  8. Effect of high plasma free fatty acids on the free radical formation of myocardial mitochondria isolated from ischemic dog hearts.
Kamikawa T, Yamazaki N.  Jpn Heart J. 1981 Nov;22(6):939-49.
  9. Acrolein inhibits respiration in isolated brain mitochondria.
Picklo MJ, Montine TJ.  Biochim Biophys Acta. 2001 Feb 14;1535(2):145-52
  10. Acrolein, a product of lipid peroxidation, inhibits glucose and glutamate uptake in primary neuronal cultures.
Lovell MA, Xie C, Markesbery WR.  Free Radic Biol Med. 2000 Oct 15;29(8):714-20.
  11. Thyroid hormone action in mitochondria.  C Wrutniak-Cabello, F Casas and G Cabello UMR Différenciation Cellulaire et Croissance (INRA, Université Montpellier II, ENSAM), Unité d’Endocrinologie Cellulaire, INRA, 2 Place Viala, 34060 Montpellier Cedex 1, France

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Knowing more about our brain for longevity

Image shows the bbb.

A RECIPE TO MAKE A HUMAN BLOOD-BRAIN BARRIER

Researchers have defined a process that can help to create more realistic human blood-brain barriers in a dish. READ MORE…

Image shows a visualization of brainwaves.

BURSTS OF BETA WAVES, NOT SUSTAINED RHYTHMS, FILTER SENSORY PROCESSING IN BRAIN

In both human and animal subject, bursts of beta wave activity in the brain help to filter distraction in order to process different sensations, a new study reports. READ MORE…

a brain

BRAIN IMAGING REVEALS ADHD AS A COLLECTION OF DIFFERENT DISORDERS

A new study sheds light on ADHD, reporting teens with the disorder fit into one of three specific subgroups with distinct brain impairments and no common abnormalities between them. READ MORE…

Image shows neurons.

HIGHER ESTROGEN LEVELS LINKED TO INCREASED ALCOHOL SENSITIVITY IN BRAIN’S REWARD CENTER

Neurons in the ventral tegmental area, an area of the brain considered to be the reward center, fire more rapidly to alcohol when estrogen levels are elevated, a new study reports. The study may shed light on how alcohol addiction develops in some women. READ MORE…
Image shows the selective response of a subplate neuron.

SOURCE OF EARLY BRAIN ACTIVITY IDENTIFIED

A new study reveals a mechanism that may explain the link between sound input and cognitive function in the developing brain. READ MORE…
Image shows a section of the optic tectum.

ROLE OF THYROID HORMONE IN BRAIN DEVELOPMENT

Researchers report a thyroid hormone is critical for the earliest stages of brain development. READ MORE…
Image shows neurons.

BLAME TIRED BRAIN CELLS FOR MENTAL LAPSES AFTER POOR SLEEP

UCLA researchers report sleep deprivation prevents neurons from correctly connecting with each other, resulting in temporary cognitive lapses in visual perception and memory. READ MORE…
Image shows an Alzheimer's brain.

HIGHER BRAIN GLUCOSE LEVELS MAY MEAN MORE SEVERE ALZHEIMER’S

A new NIH study reveals abnormalities in brain glucose metabolism could be linked to the severity of Alzheimer’s pathology. READ MORE…
Image shows people talking.

BRAIN TREATS DIALECT AS LANGUAGE

A new study reports the brain treats language and different dialects in the same way. READ MORE…
Image shows a lady sitting next to a monitor undergoing rTMS.

EXPERIMENTAL BRAIN TECHNOLOGY CAN REWIND ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE

Researchers report repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation can help to reverse some of the signs of Alzheimer’s disease. So long as patients receive the treatments, cognitive decline appears to halt and, in some cases, cognitive abilities improve. READ MORE…

WHY OUR BRAINS NEED SLEEP, AND WHAT HAPPENS IF WE DON’T GET ENOUGH

From consolidating memories to cleaning out toxins in the brain that accumulate during waking hours, researchers explore why sleep is so important and what happens when we don’t get enough. READ MORE…

a brain

BRAIN ACTIVITY IS INHERITED: FINDINGS MAY INFORM TREATMENT FOR ADHD AND AUTISM

Machine learning study reveals that, much like genetics, brain connectivity patterns are passed down from parents to children.  READ MORE…
Image shows a brain.

HERE’S WHAT WE THINK ALZHEIMER’S DOES TO THE BRAIN

A new paper explores different findings about the development of Alzheimer’s and considers how personalized treatments may help combat this complex disease. READ MORE…
a woman sleeping

SLEEPING THROUGH SNORING: NEURONS THAT ROUSE BRAIN TO BREATH IDENTIFIED

Researchers have identified a mechanism that helps rouse the brains of mice suffering from simulated sleep apnea. The findings could help develop new treatments for people with obstructive sleep apnea and provide new insights into SIDS. READ MORE…
brain and neurons

BRAIN’S ALERTNESS CIRCUITRY CONSERVED THROUGH EVOLUTION

Optogenetics research reveals brain circuits critical for alertness. READ MORE…
Image shows DNA.

BLOOD CLOTTING PROTEIN PREVENTS REPAIR IN THE BRAIN

A new study sheds light on demylination diseases like Multiple Sclerosis. Researchers discovered a blood clotting protein can leak into the central nervous system and prevent myelin production. READ MORE…
neurons

ELECTRON MICROSCOPY UNCOVERS UNEXPECTED CONNECTIONS IN FRUIT FLY BRAIN

Microscopy technology allows researchers to discover new connections in brain areas associated with memory and learning in fruit flies. READ MORE…
neuron

HOW NEWBORN NEURONS FIND THEIR PROPER PLACE IN THE ADULT BRAIN

CSHL researchers document how neuroblasts make their journey through the rostral migratory stream to their target destination in the olfactory bulb. READ MORE…
neurons

TOO MANY BRAIN CONNECTIONS MAY BE AT THE ROOT OF AUTISM

Researchers report too many connections form between neurons in the cerebellum and learning difficulties are expressed in mice who lack the RNF8 gene. READ MORE…

MIDDLE AGE INFLAMMATION LINKED TO BRAIN SHRINKAGE DECADES LATER

According to a new study, people who have inflammation biomarkers in their blood during middle age are more likely to have increased brain shrinkage as they grow older. Researchers report the brain cell loss associated with inflammation was most prevalent in areas affected in Alzheimer’s disease. READ MORE…
Image shows neurons.

HOW DO ADULT BRAIN CIRCUITS REGULATE NEW NEURON PRODUCTION?

UNC researchers have identified a brain circuit that runs from near the front of the brain to the hippocampus that helps to control neurogenesis. READ MORE…
Image shows a diagram of neurons.

AUTISM TREATMENTS MAY RESTORE BRAIN CONNECTIONS

Researchers report they have identified potential treatments that could restore brain function in people on the autism spectrum who lack a gene critical for neural connections. READ MORE…

neurons

MATURITY MOLECULE HELPS ADOLESCENT BRAIN GROW UP

Mice lacking a gene called laminin alpha 5 suffer defects in synaptic maturation during teen brain development, leading to fewer synapses in adulthood. This may contribute to neuropsychological conditions, such as Schizophrenia, which can appear during later adolescence.READ MORE…

The image shows brains as the feet of musical notes.

NEUROSCIENCE OF MUSIC – HOW MUSIC ENHANCES LEARNING THROUGH NEUROPLASTICITY

Neuroscience research into the neuroscience of music shows that musicians’ brains may be primed to distinguish meaningful sensory information from noise.  READ MORE…

THOUGHT CONTROL OF PROSTHETIC LIMBS FUNDED BY DARPA

Thought control of prosthetic limbs via brain-controlled interfaces will be tested and developed with funding from DARPA. Human subjects will test neural interface systems used to control prosthetic limbs.  READ MORE…

GUT BACTERIA CAN AFFECT ONSET OF MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS

Gut bacteria, previously considered benign, has the ability to alter the immune system of mice enough to affect the rate of Multiple Sclerosis occurance.  READ MORE…
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NEUROBIOLOGY RESEARCH FINDS GABA INTERFERES WITH MEMORY OF NEUROFIBROMATOSIS TYPE 1 PATIENTS

Neurobiology research from UCLA indicates the possibility of GABA interfering with working memory in patients with neurofibromatosis type 1, or NF1. READ MORE…

3 BLIND MICE COULD SEE? IPRGCS HELP RODS AND CONES WITH IMAGE FORMATION

Mice without rods and cones were able to use ipRGCs to detect light and possibly form low acuity images. READ MORE…

RESEARCH SHOWS SIRT1 ENHANCES SYNAPTIC PLASTICITY AND MEMORY

Researchers at MIT have discovered that Sirtuin1, a protein encoded by the SIRT1 gene, promotes synaptic plasticity and boosts memory. READ MORE…

CHEMICAL P7C3 GROWS NEW NEURONS AND IMPROVES LEARNING

Scientists find the chemical P7C3 grows new neuronal growth within the dentate gyrus and improves learning and memory. READ MORE…

AUTISM RESEARCH: MISOPROSTOL INTERFERES WITH NEURONAL CELL FUNCTION

Neuroscience research on Autism has shown how misoprostol interferes with neuronal cell function.  READ MORE…

NATURAL MECHANISM THAT CONTROLS COCAINE USE DISCOVERED

A natural mechanism that controls cocaine use was discovered by Scripps Research scientists. READ MORE…

SCIENTISTS PREDICT YOUR BEHAVIORS BETTER THAN YOU

Scientists predict your behavior better than you according to new neuroscience research. READ MORE…
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COFFEE AND NIGHTTIME JOBS DON’T MIX, STUDY FINDS

Night-shift workers should avoid drinking coffee if they wish to improve their sleep, according to research published in the journal Sleep Medicine. READ MORE…

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NEW GUIDELINES IDENTIFY BEST TREATMENTS TO HELP ALS PATIENTS LIVE LONGER, EASIER

ST. PAUL, Minn. – New guidelines from the American Academy of Neurology identify the most effective treatments for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), often caREAD MORE…

NEUROBIOLOGICAL MARKERS FOR DEPRESSION

Neuroscience researchers suggest that utilizing fMRI studies could help to provide biomarkers for the diagnosis of depression. A recent fMRI study of patients with depression showed marked abnormal activations in the medial prefronal cortex. Researchers believe that by identifying the neurobiological markers for depression, psychiatrists can tailor medications and therapies to suit the needs of individual patients. READ MORE…

NERVE CELL REGENERATION IN HIPPOCAMPUS CAN PREVENT MEMORY LOSS

New research released from the University of Florida suggests the production of new nerve cells within the Hippocampus could prevent memory loss and assist in improving memory. READ MORE…

OLDER CORPUS COLLOSUM CROSSTALK SLOWS RESPONSE TIMES

This research shows that the loss of connections in the corpus collosum could be partly responsible for slower response times seen in older animals and humans due to too much crosstalk and confusion between the brain hemispheres. READ MORE…

SINGLE NEURONS AND DENDRITES CAN DETECT DIFFERENT INPUT SEQUENCES

UCL neuroscientists have shown that a single neuron, and even a single dendrite, can respond differently to unique sequences of input. READ MORE…

PERFORANT PATH IDENTIFIED IN HUMANS – EARLY ID OF ALZHEIMER’S POSSIBLE

UC Irvine researchers have identified the perforant path in humans with the diffusion tensor imaging technique. READ MORE…

REGENERATION OF NERVE CONNECTIONS AFTER SPINAL CORD INJURY – PTEN DELETION

Deleting the enzyme PTEN allowed neurology researchers to regenerate corticospinal tract neurons after spinal cord injuries in rodents. READ MORE…

ARTIFICIAL BEE EYES SHOW WORLD FROM BEE’S POINT OF VIEW

Researchers have developed a camera system that mimics the bee eye. The artificial bee eyes allow the researchers to take images that are believed to be similar to the bee’s viewpoint. READ MORE…

MEMORIES WITH EMOTIONAL CONTENT FORM EVEN WHEN AMYGDALA IS DAMAGED

A new study from researchers at UCLA indicates that new memories with emotional content can be formed even if the amygdala is damaged. Researchers believe that other areas compensated for the damaged amygdala, and aided learning and memory. READ MORE…

NEUROGLOBIN COULD BE KEY TO PREVENTING ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE

Research scientists from UC Davis and the University of Auckland have discovered that neuroglobin might be key to preventing Alzheimer’s disease. Neuroglobin can prevent apoptosis in response to nautral stress.  READ MORE…

HARD TO CATCH UP ON SLEEP LOSS STUDY FINDS

Sleeping in on the weekends may not allow you to recover from the sleep lost during the work week according to a recent sleep study. READ MORE…

A library aisle is shown.

EARLY EDUCATION FIGHTS DEMENTIA

Brain research reveals a correlation between amount of education and dementia.READ MORE…

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FIRST DIRECT EVIDENCE THAT ADHD IS A GENETIC DISORDER FOUND

Neuroscience researchers from Cardiff University have found the first direct evidence that ADHD is a genetic disorder. READ MORE…

EARLY LIFE STRESSES COULD HAVE LASTING EFFECTS ON GAD1 GENE

Neuroscience research published in September’s Journal of Neuroscience suggests early life stresses may modify the GAD1 gene, which controls the production of GABA. Through their research on rats, researchers were able to note that those who experienced a lack of affection showed an obstruction within the DNA which controls the GAD1 gene. As it is believed that GABA deficits might be apparent within schizophrenic patients, researchers propose that the modification of GAD1 might determine a child’s predisposition to mental illness. READ MORE…

CHANGING RIGHT HANDERS TO LEFT HANDERS

Neuroscientists at UC Berkeley have discovered that stimulation of a certain area of the brain can cause a change in which hand a person favors to perform a task. Using transcranial magnetic stimulation on right handed test subjects, researchers discovered that stimulating the posterior parietal cortex on the left side caused an increase in the use of the left hand. Researchers suggested this finding might be useful in discovering methods to help patients overcome learned limb disuse. READ MORE…

GAMERS HAVE ADVANTAGE IN PERFORMING VISUOMOTOR TASKS

A study published in October’s Cortex has shown young people who regularly play video games have an advantage in performing tasks which require visuomotor skills. The study also found that gamers show increased activity in the prefrontal cortex when asked to perform visuomotor tasks. By contrast, non-gamers had more reliant use of the parietal cortex, an area which involves hand-eye coordination, when performing visuomotor tasks. READ MORE…

CAN CAREER CHOICES INFLUENCE DEMENTIA?

Correlating data from 588 patients diagnosed with frontotemporal lobe degeneration (FTLD), researchers found that subjects with professions which related highly for verbal skills had greater tissue loss on the right hand side of the brain. By contrast, those whose professions required less aptitude for verbal skills, for example flight engineers, had more tissue damage to the left hand side of the brain. READ MORE…

DISABLING THE RGS14 GENE MAKES MICE SMARTER

Researchers have discovered that disabling the RGS14 gene in mice can make them smarter. When the RGS14 gene was disabled within the CA2 region of the hippocampus, researchers found that mice were better able to remember objects they had explored and learn to navigate mazes better than regular mice.  READ MORE…

INTROSPECTIVE PEOPLE HAVE LARGER PREFRONTAL CORTEX

Neuroscience researchers have discovered the anterior prefrontal cortex appears to be larger in people with strong introspective abilities. Additionally, the structure of white matter within this area of the brain is also linked to the process of introspection. READ MORE…

PHYSICALLY FIT CHILDREN HAVE BIGGER HIPPOCAMPAL VOLUME

Neuroscientists have reported they have found an association between physical fitness and brain development in children. The report suggests children who are physically fitter tend to have larger hippocampi and perform better in memory based tests than their less fit counterparts.  READ MORE…

DECREASED NEURAL INHIBITION MAKES DECISION MAKING HARDER FOR THE ANXIOUS

New psychology research from CU-Boulder suggests that “neural inhibition” is a critical component in our ability to make choices. Psychologists have proposed people who suffer from anxiety could have decreased neuronal inhibition, which makes it more difficult to make important decisions. READ MORE…

NEW MOLECULAR PATHWAY UNDERLYING PARKINSON’S DISEASE IDENTIFIED

Neuroscience researchers have identified a new molecular pathway underlying Parkinson’s disease. The pathway involves polyamines, which were discovered to be responsible for increased build-up of other toxic proteins in neurons. The research also suggests polyamine lowering drugs could have a protective effect from Parkinson’s disease.  READ MORE…

TWO STEPS DURING LTP REMODEL INTERNAL SKELETON OF DENDRITIC SPINES

Neuroscience researchers have discovered how a structural component within neurons performs coordinated movements when connections are strengthened. Researchers also distinguished two separate steps during long term potentiation which are involved in remodeling the internal “skeletons” of dendritic spines. The research could be influential in providing further understanding of many neurological, cognitive and neurodegenerative diseases. READ MORE…