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News and Events/BCS News

August 26, 2009
Rats' mental 'instant replay' drives next moves : MIT researchers have found that rats use a mental instant replay of their actions to help them decide what to do next, shedding new light on how animals and humans learn and remember.[more]

August 26, 2009
We Learn More From Success, Not Failure : There is a biological reason why we learn more from our triumphs than from our failures, according to new research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. [more]

August 15, 2009
Your Baby Is Smarter Than You Think : GENERATIONS of psychologists and philosophers have believed that babies and young children were basically defective adults — irrational, egocentric and unable to think logically.New studies, however, demonstrate that babies and very young children know, observe, explore, imagine and learn more than we would ever have thought possible. [more]

August 12, 2009
MIT researchers: The mind's eye scans like a spotlight : You're meeting a friend in a crowded cafeteria. Do your eyes scan the room like a roving spotlight, moving from face to face, or do you take in the whole scene, hoping that your friend's face will pop out at you? And what, for that matter, determines how fast you can scan the room? [more]

August 11, 2009
Is multi-tasking bad for your brain? Experts reveal the hidden perils of juggling too many jobs : The old adage that we "learn more from our mistakes" could be wrong, with new research showing our brain only learns from experience when we do something right. Speaking in the journal Neuron, Earl Miller, the Picower Professor of Neuroscience at MIT, said: "If the monkey just got a correct answer, a signal lingered in its brain that said, 'You did the right thing.' Right after a correct answer, neurons processed information more sharply and effectively, and the monkey was more likely to get the next answer correct as well. "But after an error there was no improvement. In other words, only after successes, not failures, did brain processing and the monkeys' behaviour improve." [more]

July 30, 2009
Is multi-tasking bad for your brain? Experts reveal the hidden perils of juggling too many jobs : The old adage that we "learn more from our mistakes" could be wrong, with new research showing our brain only learns from experience when we do something right. Speaking in the journal Neuron, Earl Miller, the Picower Professor of Neuroscience at MIT, said: "If the monkey just got a correct answer, a signal lingered in its brain that said, 'You did the right thing.' Right after a correct answer, neurons processed information more sharply and effectively, and the monkey was more likely to get the next answer correct as well. "But after an error there was no improvement. In other words, only after successes, not failures, did brain processing and the monkeys' behaviour improve." [more]

July 29, 2009
Why we learn more from our successes than our failures : If you've ever felt doomed to repeat your mistakes, MIT researchers may have explained why: Brain cells may only learn from experience when we do something right and not when we fail. New work by a team of neuroscientists may explain why brain cells only learn from experience when we do something right and not when we fail. [more]

July 20 , 2009
Trying to learn how learning works : John Gabrieli illustrates how neuroscience & education researchers have teamed up to tackle dyslexia, a difficulty with reading that afflicts 5% to 17% of children. Behavioral & brain measures can now identify dyslexic tendencies in infants, and lead to teaching that can "prevent dyslexia from occurring in the majority of children who would otherwise develop dyslexia," according to the study published in Science. [more]

July 14 , 2009
Adult brain can change within seconds : The human brain can adapt to changing demands even in adulthood, but MIT neuroscientists have now found evidence of it changing with unsuspected speed. Their findings suggest that the brain has a network of silent connections that underlie its plasticity. [more]

July 6 , 2009
Songbirds reveal how practice improves performance: By studying the chirps of tiny songbirds, MIT neuroscientists have gained new insights on trial-and-error learning -- findings that could further understanding of the complex brain structures that play a key role in learning and habit formation in humans. [more]

June 26 , 2009
Thinking of you: Based on studies involving the blind, MIT neuroscientists have some surprising new insights about how people make inferences about others' state of mind.[more]

June 24 , 2009
Sleep helps build long-term memories: Experts have long suspected that part of the process of turning fleeting short-term memories into lasting long-term memories occurs during sleep. Now, researchers have shown that mice prevented from "replaying" their waking experiences while asleep do not remember them as well as mice who are able to perform this function. [more]

June 14 , 2009
The man and his vision: It is nice to spot a familiar face in a crowd of unknowns. But how do we do that? And why do people who recover sight after years of blindness continue to have problems with perception? These are some of the questions Pawan Sinha and his lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are trying to unfold. [more]

June 8 , 2009
Magnetic fields test 'reflexes' of autism: "There's a lot of mystery about autism - it's not as if there's a well-understood story of what's going on at all, and there's a huge variety of autism, too," said John Gabrieli, a neuroscientist at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Transcranial magnetic stimulation "is fantastic for identifying brain regions that are essential for specific mental functions. . . . I think if we can start to use it more systematically with autism, one could hope we'd understand a lot more about what's going on." [more]

June 3 , 2009
Brain & Cognitive Sciences awards: Awards given in MIT Brain & Cognitive Sciences for the academic year 2008-2009. [more]

May 28, 2009
Long-distance brain waves focus attention: Neuroscientists found that neurons in the prefrontal cortex fire in unison and send signals to the visual cortex to do the same, generating gamma oscillations that are associated with cognitive states such as attention, learning and consciousness. [more]

May 19, 2009
Robotic therapy holds promise for cerebral palsy : Over the past few years, MIT engineers have successfully tested robotic devices to help stroke patients learn to control their arms and legs. Now, they’re building on that work to help children with brain injuries and disorders such as cerebral palsy. [more]

May 6, 2009
Trial drugs 'reverse' Alzheimer's: US scientists say they have successfully reversed the effects of Alzheimer's with experimental drugs. The drugs target and boost the function of a newly pinpointed gene involved in the brain's memory formation. In mice, the treatment helped restore long-term memory and improve learning for new tasks, Nature reports.[more]

May 4 , 2009
Attention Must Be Paid — but How?: How can you focus on what’s important? My latest Findings column discusses the science of paying attention. Now you can consult directly with two of the sources quoted in my column: Robert Desimone, the Doris and Don Berkey Professor of Neuroscience and the director of the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at M.I.T., and Winifred Gallagher, the author of “Rapt: Attention and the Focused Life.” [more]

May 4 , 2009
Ear Plugs to Lasers: The Science of Concentration: Imagine that you have ditched your laptop and turned off your smartphone. You are beyond the reach of YouTube, Facebook, e-mail, text messages. You are in a Twitter-free zone, sitting in a taxicab with a copy of “Rapt,” a guide by Winifred Gallagher to the science of paying attention. This work features Robert Desimone, a neuroscientist at M.I.T. [more]

April 26, 2009
Making waves in the brain :Scientists have studied high-frequency brain waves, known as gamma oscillations, for more than 50 years, believing them crucial to consciousness, attention, learning and memory. Now, for the first time, MIT researchers and colleagues have found a way to induce these waves by shining laser light directly onto the brains of mice.[more]

April 20 , 2009
Eight from MIT elected to AAAS :Eight members of the MIT community, including Nancy Kanwisher, are among the 210 new Fellows and 19 new Foreign Honorary Members recently elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.[more]

April 20 , 2009
Double Vision: Parsing Images That Trick Our Brain :Look at the picture above and you see Albert Einstein. Now walk across the room. Suddenly, he morphs into Marilyn Monroe. Trippy, right? Aude Oliva, an associate professor of cognitive science at MIT, uses images like this one to study how our brains make sense of sight. [more]

April 20 , 2009
Music at MIT hitting all the right notes:Whether it's tinkering with music-editing software, performing in one of MIT's eight professionally led music groups or making brain waves audible, music at MIT can mean many things. In the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, associate professor Pawan Sinha and graduate students are working on way to create music and art from brainwaves.[more]

April 9 , 2009
How you feel the world impacts how you see it :In the classic waterfall illusion, if you stare at the downward motion of a waterfall for some period of time, stationary objects -- such as rocks -- appear to drift upward. MIT neuroscientists have found that this phenomenon, called motion aftereffect, occurs not only in our visual perception but also in our tactile perception, and that these senses actually influence one another. Put another way, how you feel the world can actually change how you see it -- and vice versa.[more]

March 21 , 2009
Gene 'has key schizophrenia role' :A US team found that a mutated version of the DISC1 gene disrupts the growth and development of brain cells. The team showed that DISC1 plays a key role in normal brain development and the growth of individual neurons. However, carrying the wrong version of the gene can make this process go awry. Lead researcher Dr Li-Heui Tsai said: "We need to get a handle on the genetics of schizophrenia, but now we know how DISC1 probably contributes to the disorder, which is a big step." [more]

March 20 , 2009
Blocked Enzyme Reverses Schizophrenia-like Symptoms.:Researchers at MIT have found that inhibiting a key brain enzyme in mice reversed schizophrenia-like symptoms.[more]

March 19 , 2009
Mental health means new neurons?:A gene strongly associated with schizophrenia and other neuropsychiatric disorders regulates the birth of new neurons in the adult brain, according to new research. The study, published in Cell this week, supports a controversial theory linking diseases such as schizophrenia and depression to neurogenesis and provides new targets for the treatment of psychiatric conditions. [more]

March 19 , 2009
Blocked enzyme reverses schizophrenia-like symptoms:Researchers have found that inhibiting a key brain enzyme in mice reversed schizophrenia-like symptoms. The finding, reported in the March 20 issue of Cell, identified how a particular gene controls this brain enzyme. Better understanding of the relationship could lead to new drug treatments for schizophrenia, the severe brain disorder that affects about 1 percent of the population. [more]

March 13 , 2009
A human failure, seen at face value:Humans excel at recognizing faces, but how we do this has been an abiding mystery in neuroscience and psychology. In an effort to explain our success in this area, researchers are taking a closer look at how and why we fail. [more]

March 3 , 2009
What drives brain changes in macular degeneration?:In macular degeneration, the most common form of adult blindness, patients progressively lose vision in the center of their visual field, thereby depriving the corresponding part of the visual cortex of input. Previously, researchers discovered that the deprived neurons begin responding to visual input from another spot on the retina -- evidence of plasticity in the adult cortex. [more]

February 11 , 2009
Simons gift to fund autism research at MIT:Jim '58 and Marilyn Simons, along with the Simons Foundation, recently made a gift of $4.5 million to establish the Simons Initiative on Autism and the Brain at MIT. The new initiative will attract postdoctoral fellows, increase interest in autism research, and enhance collaboration among existing investigators. In addition, the funds will be used to purchase equipment to be shared by autism researchers at the Institute, support a colloquium series to raise awareness in the community, and fund pilot projects on innovative approaches for autism research. [more]

February 9 , 2009
Multiple genes implicated in autism:By pinpointing two genes that cause autism-like symptoms in mice, researchers at MIT have shown for the first time that multiple, interacting genetic risk factors may influence the severity of autistic symptoms. [more]

January 31, 2009
Of Voodoo and the Brain:Patterns of neural activity and thoughts or feelings are not as tightly linked as scientists have claimed. [more]

January 29 , 2009
What causes motor complications of Parkinson's treatment?:MIT Institute Professor Ann Graybiel, a prominent Parkinson's researcher, and her colleagues have identified two molecules whose expression in the brain is altered in the brains of animals with L-DOPA-induced dyskinesias. The results may lead to new approaches to the treatment of dyskinesias in Parkinson's patients, of which there are more than 1 million in the United States alone. [more]

January 29 , 2009
Voodoo Correlations: Have the Results of Some Brain Scanning Experiments Been Overstated?:Ed Vul is a graduate student in the Kanwisher Lab and the lead author of a recent paper, "Voodoo Correlations in Social Neuroscience," which explored the high correlations between measures of personality or emotionality in the individual with the activity of certain brain areas as observed in an fMRI machine. The paper has provoked a flurry of commentary. Mind Matters editor Jonah Lehrer chats with Vul about statistics, media coverage, and why we should always make multiple guesses. [more]

January 29 , 2009
Burgeoning field of neurotech spawns brainy businesses:The rapidly growing field of neurotechnology -- which draws upon biology, medical imaging, computer science and other areas of research -- is becoming a boon for existing businesses while generating startup ventures. With the aim of grooming the sector's future leaders, MIT has created a new research program and is offering numerous classes -- including one on how to launch businesses in the industry. [more]

January 26 , 2009
Fine tuning the Theory of Mind:This ability to sense what other people want, believe or intend is called the 'Theory of Mind'. The idea has fascinated philosophers & psychologists for centuries, but it wasn't until 2003 that Saxe, then a graduate student, identified a precise region in the brain — the temporo-parietal junction or TPJ — that's preferentially active when we think about what others are thinking. In the past year, now working in her own lab in BCS, Saxe has been designing FMRi experiments to study infant brain development, moral judgment & Theory of Mind in people with autism, who often have trouble grasping others’ thoughts. [more]

January 20 , 2009
Study may cast light on mental illnesses:You're sitting at a dull meeting and your attention drifts. You're waiting in a check-out line, thinking of nothing in particular. You're lying in bed, having just turned off the television. At such times, your conscious mind is on "idle," but your brain is not. [more]

January 19 , 2009
Altered brain activity in schizophrenia may cause exaggerated focus on self :Schizophrenia may blur the boundary between internal and external realities by over-activating a brain system that is involved in self-reflection, and thus causing an exaggerated focus on self, a new MIT and Harvard brain imaging study has found. [more]

January 18 , 2009
Have we met?:Men are red, women are green, the nose may be key to "reading" a face, and ordinary eyebrows may be what makes a face recognizable, rather than, say, provocatively bee-stung lips or baby blues.. [more]

January 17 , 2009
Test Subjects Who Call the Scientist Mom or Dad : Even before his son was born, Pawan Sinha saw unique potential. At a birthing class, Dr. Sinha, a neuroscience professor at the MIT, stunned everyone, including his wife, by saying he was excited about the baby’s birth “because I really want to study him and do experiments with him.” [more]

January 7 , 2009
Neuroscientists ID source of cognitive decline in aging brains:As people age, memory and the ability to carry out tasks often decline. Scientists looking for ways to lessen that decline often have focused on the "gray matter" -- the cortical regions where high-level functions such as memory are located. [more]

December 30, 2008
Blindsight:A team of international brain researchers recently produced some unbelievable footage: A completely blind man walking down a littered hallway, apparently cognizant of the obstacles before him and avoiding them all. For years, scientists have quarreled over the legitimacy of "blindsight." Now, it seems undeniable - but what will be the consequences? BCS Professor Dick Held discussed this on WNYC. [more]

December 22, 2008
Blind, Yet Seeing: The Brain’s Subconscious Visual Sense:The man, a doctor left blind by two successive strokes, refused to take part in the experiment. He could not see anything, he said, and had no interest in navigating an obstacle course — a cluttered hallway — for the benefit of science. Why bother? When he finally tried it, though, something remarkable happened. [more]

December 20, 2008
The Flipper Challenges the Crawl: TV viewers may think that they can process it all, but they’re fooling themselves, said Earl K. Miller, a professor of neuroscience at M.I.T. “A lot of times, when you think you’re multi-tasking, you’re just switching your attention between one or two or three things,” he said. As a result, viewers process less of each. Perhaps the bite-size style of online news consumption doesn’t translate to TV, after all. [more]

December 18, 2008
Nine from MIT, including three from BCS, named AAAS fellows:The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) has awarded the distinction of fellow to 486 members, including three members of the BCS community (John D.E. Gabrieli, Mriganka Sur, and Li-Huei Tsai). [more]

December 15, 2008
Top 100 Stories of 2008 #39: Amazonian Tribe Doesn't Have Words for Numbers:A small group of hunter/gatherers living in the Amazon rain forest is overturning some fundamental assumptions about the mind. The Pirahã people in Brazil have no words to express numerical concepts such as “one,” “two,” or “many.” “They don’t count and they have no number words,” says MIT cognitive scientist Edward Gibson, who headed a study published in the journal Cognition. This work by Michael C. Frank, Daniel L. Everett, Evelina Fedorenko and Ted Gibson was recently named #39 in Discover magazine's list of the Top 100 Stories of 2008. [more]

December 10, 2008
Team sheds light on Alzheimer's mystery: In work that could lead to new drugs to target Alzheimer's disease, MIT researchers and colleagues have shed light on one of the molecular mysteries surrounding this common form of dementia. [more]

December 7, 2008
Top 100 Stories of 2008 #86: You, Too, Have a Photographic Memory:For decades cognitive scientists knew people could remember lots of images stretching back decades. But researchers at MIT found that human memory is much more powerful than that. This work by Tim Brady, Talia Konkle, George Alvarez and Aude Oliva was recently named #86 in Discover magazine's list of the Top 100 Stories of 2008. [more]

November 24, 2008
Adult brain neurons can remodel connections: Overturning a century of prevailing thought, scientists are finding that neurons in the adult brain can remodel their connections. In work reported in the Nov. 24 online edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), Elly Nedivi, associate professor of neurobiology, and colleagues found that a type of neuron implicated in autism spectrum disorders remodels itself in a strip of brain tissue only as thick as four sheets of tissue paper at the upper border of cortical layer 2. [more]

November 21 , 2008
Not as easy as it may seem: Using adult stem cells to replace neurons lost because of brain damage and disease could be more difficult than previously thought, according to MIT researchers, because newly formed brain cells receive messages before they are capable of sending them. [more]

November 13 , 2008
Scientists named to Discover's 'Top 20 Under 40' : Discover Magazine has named two MIT researchers among its 'Top 20 Under 40' list including Professor Ed Boyden in the magazine's December issue. [more]

November 12 , 2008
Singing in slow motion : MIT scientists report using temperature to control the speed of brain activity. Thanks to some technical advances and some help from songbirds, they are closing in on the regions responsible for timing within the brain. [more]

November 3 , 2008
Ann Graybiel named Institute Professor: Ann Graybiel, the Walter A. Rosenblith Professor of Neuroscience in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, has been named Institute Professor, the highest honor MIT can bestow on a member of the faculty. Graybiel, who is also an investigator in the McGovern Institute for Brain Research, has been a member of the MIT faculty since 1973. She is the 14th current Institute Professor and the second to receive the honor this year. [more]

October 27, 2008
MIT neuroscience bolstered by new faculty, viral core facility: A facility exploiting viruses' ability to inject DNA precisely and efficiently into brain cells and two new experts on the molecular underpinnings of the brain's ability to change in response to experience will bolster neuroscience at MIT, home to one of the largest brain sciences research centers in the world. [more]

October 24, 2008
Multitasking Can Make You Lose ... Um ... Focus: As we are required, or feel required, to do more and more things in a shorter period of time, researchers are trying to figure out how the brain changes attention from one subject to another. Earl Miller, Picower Professor of Neuroscience, explained it this way: human brains have a very large prefrontal cortex, which is the part of the brain that contains the “executive control” process. This helps us switch and prioritize tasks. [more]

October 14, 2008
BCS faculty among Popular Science's 'Brilliant 10: Popular Science magazine has named MIT BCS faculty member Rebecca Saxe to its annual "Brilliant 10" list of the country's top young scientists to watch. The list appears in the November issue of the magazine, which hits newsstands Thursday, Oct. 14.  Saxe, whom the magazine called "The Infant's Philosopher," is the Frederick A. and Carole J. Middleton Career Development Assistant Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience. She received an MIT PhD in 2004. [more]

October, 2008
Brain-Scan Cell Mystery Solved — Scientists unmask cells that make functional MRI possible: Since its discovery in the early 1990s, functional MRI has been the basis for more than 19,000 studies of the living, working brain. The technique allows scientists an unprecedented glimpse of the brain regions that are most active during particular tasks or states of mind, but it does not do so directly: the scans measure blood flow, which seems to increase around neurons that are firing. Neurons are not directly connected to blood vessels, however, so until now the mechanism underlying fMRI’s robust success has been a mystery. Now a team from MIT reveal that the support cells dubbed astrocytes (because of their star-shaped bodies) form the link between neurons and blood vessels. [more]

October, 2008
Go Ahead, Change Your Mind — Averaging your guesses is better than trying only once: Ed Vul of MIT and Harold Pashler of UCSD asked 428 participants various trivia questions and then, without warning, asked them to guess again later. On average, a person's combined responses were more accurate than either his or her guesses alone. [more]

October 2 , 2008
Think You're Multitasking? Think Again: Don't believe the multitasking hype, scientists say. New research shows that we humans aren't as good as we think we are at doing several things at once. But it also highlights a human skill that gave us an evolutionary edge. [more]

September 13 , 2008
Mysteries of Memory—New research explores how the brain records and then recalls events: Think about yesterday's lunch and a variety of details may leap to mind, each of them employing a different section of your brain. The olfactory system calls up what the meal smelled like, while the visual cortex retrieves images of the restaurant you ate in and the temporal lobe recalls the sound of your waitress's voice. Scientists have long suspected that every recollection—from the mundane to the momentous—ignites a distinct pattern of neurons. [more]

September 11 , 2008
Time teaches us how to recognize visual objects : In work that could aid efforts to develop more brain-like computer vision systems, MIT neuroscientists have tricked the visual brain into confusing one object with another, thereby demonstrating that time teaches us how to recognize objects. [more]

September 9 , 2008
Total recall--MIT researchers: human memory capacity much bigger than previously thought: In recent years, demonstrations of memory’s failures have convinced many scientists that human memory does not store the details of our experiences. However, a new study from MIT cognitive neuroscientists may overturn this widespread belief: They have shown that given the right setting, the human brain can record an amazing amount of information. [more]

August 25, 2008
MIT model helps computers sort data more like humans:Humans have a natural tendency to find order in sets of information, a skill that has proven difficult to replicate in computers. Faced with a large set of data, computers don't know where to begin -- unless they're programmed to look for a specific structure, such as a hierarchy, linear order, or a set of clusters. [more]

July 28, 2008
"The Eureka Hunt," ANNALS OF SCIENCE about insight:There is something inherently mysterious about moments of insight. Earl Miller, a neuroscientist at M.I.T., has spent his career studying the prefrontal cortex, a brain area critical to insight and intelligence. In 2001, Miller and Cohen published an influential paper arguing that that the prefrontal cortex was not simply an aggregator of information, but rather it was more like a conductor, waving its baton and directing the players. [more]

July 17, 2008
MIT-led team creates touch-based illusions: A team of scientists from MIT, Harvard and McGill has designed a new illusion involving the sense of touch, which is helping to glean new insights into perception and how different senses--such as touch and sight--work together. [more]

July 15, 2008
Brain scientists spot nature/nurture gene link: Neuroscientists at MIT found that a previously unsuspected set of genes links nature and nurture during a crucial period of brain development. The results could lead to treatments for autism and other disorders. [more]

July 15, 2008
Six from MIT receive Fulbright scholarships: Four recent MIT graduates and two current PhD students have been awarded Fulbright scholarships for the 2008-2009 academic year.   Fulbright scholarships have given students a role in U.S. foreign relations since their inception in 1946. Two recent BCS graduates, Tao Liu and Tess Veuthey, are recipients of this honor.[more]

July 10, 2008
Study points to dietary cocktail for Alzheimer's: A dietary cocktail that includes a type of omega-3 fatty acid can improve memory and learning in gerbils, according to the latest study from MIT researchers that points to a possible beverage-based treatment for Alzheimer's and other brain diseases. [more]

June 19, 2008
MIT unlocks mystery behind brain imaging: In work that solves a long-standing mystery in neuroscience, researchers at MIT's Brain and Cognitive Sciences Department have shown for the first time that star-shaped brain cells called astrocytes make noninvasive brain scans possible. [more]

June 4, 2008
BCS professor award the Ho-Am Prize : Sebastian Seung, a professor in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, has been honored with the Ho-Am Prize for his pioneering work on developing the Nonnegative Matrix Factorization (NMF) for unsupervised learning in artificial intelligence. [more]

June 4, 2008
Brain & Cognitive Sciences awards: Awards given in MIT Brain & Cognitive Sciences for the academic year 2007-2008. [more]

May 14, 2008
MIT's Rebecca Saxe probes mechanics of thought: How do we know what other people are thinking? How do we judge them, and what happens in our brains when we do? MIT neuroscientist Rebecca Saxe is tackling those tough questions and many others. [more]

May 8, 2008
Study suggests caution on new anti-obesity drug: Anti-obesity drugs that work by blocking brain molecules similar to those in marijuana could also interfere with neural development in young children, according to a new study from MIT researchers. [more]

May 1, 2008
Singing in the brain: MIT study yields birdsong insight: In work that offers insights into how birds--and perhaps people--learn new behaviors, MIT scientists have found that immature and adult birdsongs are driven by two separate brain pathways, rather than one pathway that slowly matures. [more]

April, 2008
MIT Neuroscientist's paper designated a Current Classic : "An Integrative Theory of Prefrontal Cortex Function" by Earl Miller and Jonathan Cohen (2001) has been designated a Current Classic by Thomson Scientific as among the most cited papers in Neuroscience and Behavior. [more]

March 3 , 2008
Cultural insights: Brain scans support surprising differences in perception between Westerners and Asians.  East is East and West is West, and the difference between them is starting to turn up even on brain scanners. [more]

February 27 , 2008
Researchers catch rats' twitchy whiskers in action: In a finding that could help further understanding of perception across species, MIT neuroscientists have used high-speed video to reveal rat whiskers in action and show the tiny movements that underlie the rat's perception of its tactile environment. This work was recently featured in both Neuron and Time. [more]

February 17 , 2008
No easy answers in evolution of human language: The evolution of human speech was far more complex than is implied by some recent attempts to link it to a specific gene, says MIT Professor Robert Berwick, who will discuss his work Feb. 17 at the AAAS Annual Meeting in Boston. [more]

February 16 , 2008
Brains informing computers, and vice versa: After many years, Tomaso Poggio's two parallel lines of research--one aimed at using computers to understand how the brain works, the other at improving the abilities of computers to "think"--have begun to converge. [more]

February 13 , 2008
Major science conference to feature MIT speakers: The largest interdisciplinary scientific gathering of the year begins Thursday in Boston, and MIT students, faculty (including two affiliated with BCS) and staff will play prominent roles during the five-day event. [more]

February 12 , 2008
Gene research may help explain autistic savants: Mice lacking a certain brain protein learn some tasks better but also forget faster, according to new research from MIT that may explain the phenomenon of autistic savants in humans. The work could also result in future treatments for autism and other brain development disorders. [more]

February 6 , 2008
Researchers awarded $8.5 million to study brain basis of autism and dyslexia : Two researchers at MIT will head an ambitious new project to study the origins of autism and dyslexia, supported by an $8.5M grant from the Ellison Medical Foundation. [more]

January 24, 2008
Computer vision may not be as good as thought: A new MIT study cautions that apparent successes in teaching computers to recognize visual objects like humans may be misleading because the tests being used are inadvertently stacked in favor of computers. [more]

January 24, 2008
New MIT tool probes brain circuits: Researchers at MIT report that they have created a way to see, for the first time, the effect of blocking and unblocking a single neural circuit on learning and memory in a living animal. [more]

January 11, 2008
Culture influences brain function, MIT imaging shows: People from different cultures use their brains differently to solve the same visual perceptual tasks, researchers report in the first brain imaging study of its kind, focusing on mapping brain activity patterns that reflect different mental operations. [more]

December 12, 2007
MIT corrects inherited retardation, autism in mice: Researchers at MIT have corrected key symptoms of mental retardation and autism in mice. The work indicates that a certain class of drugs could have the same effect in humans. [more]

December 4, 2007
Missing protein may be key to autism: A missing brain protein that helps in the development of synapses may be one of the culprits behind autism and other brain disorders, according to work done by Li-Huei Tsai and colleagues published in the Dec. 6 issue of Neuron.[more]

December 3 , 2007
Project Prakash's: one of Time's 2007 most significant medical findings:Recently published results from Project Prakash challenge the conventional notion of visual critical periods. They suggest that the human brain retains an impressive capacity for visual learning even after several years of congenital blindness. This work, conducted by members of the Sinha lab, was profiled in Time magazine in March, 2007 and also included in the December 3 issue as one of the year's significant medical findings.[more]

November 30 , 2007
Brain stem cells limited for replacement therapies:MIT scientists report that adult stem cells produced in the brain are preprogrammed to make only certain kinds of connections--making it impossible for a neural stem cell originating in the brain to be transplanted to other regions. [more]

November 26 , 2007
Mix of compounds improves rodents' brain function:MIT researchers have shown that a cocktail containing three compounds normally in the blood stream promotes growth of new brain connections and improves cognitive function in rodents. The treatment is now being tested in Alzheimer's patients. [more]

November 15 , 2007
Emery Brown elected to be a Fellow of the IEEE:The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) has awarded the honor of Fellow to Emery N. Brown, MD, PhD, a professor in the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology and in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences. Each year, following a rigorous evaluation procedure, the IEEE Fellow Committee recommends a select group of recipients for one of the Institute’s most prestigious honors, elevation to IEEE Fellow. Professor Brown is cited for contributions to state-space algorithms for point processes and applications to neuroscience data. [more]

November 7 , 2007
MIT IDs enzymes key to brainpower:By zeroing in on the enzymes that manipulate a key scaffolding protein for synapses, MIT researchers have found that bolstering disintegrating neural connections may help boost brainpower in Alzheimer's disease patients. [more]

October 31 , 2007
Big MIT contingent at annual neuroscience meeting:MIT's excellence in brain research will be showcased next week in San Diego as Institute scientists give five of the 24 invited talks at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience. [more]

October 26 , 2007
Seven from MIT named AAAS Fellows:The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) has awarded the distinction of Fellow to 471 members, including Emery N. Brown, M.D./ Phd., a professor in the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology and in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences.  Brown was cited for "fundamental contributions to statistical modeling of dynamic biological phenomena, especially involving circadian rhythms, functional imaging signals and neuronal spike trains." [more]

October 18 , 2007
MIT finds new role for well-known protein: In a finding that may lead to potential new treatments for diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's, researchers at the Picower Institute for Learning and Memory at MIT report an unexpected role in the brain for a well-known protein. [more]

October 16 , 2007
Blood may help us think: MIT scientists propose that blood may help us think, in addition to its well-known role as the conveyor of fuel and oxygen to brain cells. The theory has implications for understanding brain diseases such as Alzheimer's and schizophrenia. [more]

October 13 , 2007
Institute of Medicine elects Brown: Emery N. Brown, M.D., a professor in the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology and in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, has been elected to the Institute of Medicine. [more]

September 19 , 2007
Four MIT faculty win NIH awards: Four MIT faculty, including two BCS affiliated professors- Emery Brown and Alan Jasanoff, have been honored by the National Institutes of Health for their "exceptionally innovative" research. [more]

September 16 , 2007
Brain's messengers could be regulated:Researchers at MIT's Picower Institute have found that tiny, spontaneous releases of the brain's primary chemical messengers can be regulated, potentially giving scientists unprecedented control over how the brain is wired. [more]

September 13 , 2007
MIT IDs binocular vision gene: In work that could lead to new treatments for sensory disorders in which people experience the strange phenomena of seeing better with one eye covered, MIT researchers report that they have identified the gene responsible for binocular vision. [more]

September 5 , 2007
Adult brain can change, study confirms: Neuroscientists from MIT and Johns Hopkins University have used evidence from brain imaging and behavioral studies to show that the adult visual cortex reorganizes--and that the change affects visual perception. [more]

August 21 , 2007
'Clutter detector' could cut visual confusion: A team of MIT scientists has identified a way to measure visual clutter. Their research could lead to more user-friendly displays and maps, as well as tips for designers seeking to add an attention-grabbing element to a display. [more]

August 5 , 2007
MIT study: Maturity brings richer memories: MIT neuroscientists exploring how memory formation differs between children and adults have found that children rival adults in forming basic memories, but adults do better at remembering the rich, contextual details of that information. [more]

July 9, 2007
Team reports genetic link between aging, neurodegenerative disorders: Li-Huei Tsai, Picower Professor of Neuroscience in the Department of Brain, and Cognitive Sciences and colleagues report that one particular gene is a link between aging and neurodegenerative disorders. The work may lead to new drugs against debilitating neurological diseases. [more]

June 19, 2007
Four from MIT receive NARSAD awards: Ann M. Graybiel, the Walter A. Rosenblith Professor of Neuroscience, has been selected by The Mental Health Research Association to receive its Distinguished Investigator Award. Graybiel is one of 23 leading scientists to receive the award. [more]

June 4 , 2007
Brain has 'teacher' and 'tinkerer' in learning: While most people need peace and quiet to cram for a test, the brain itself may need noise to learn, a recent MIT study suggests. The researchers found that neural activities in the brain gradually change, even when nothing new is being learned. [more]

May 8 , 2007
Peter Schiller elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences : Twelve MIT faculty members are among the 203 new Fellows and 24 new Foreign Honorary Members recently elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. [more]

April 30 , 2007
Peter Schiller elected to National Academy of Sciences: Five MIT faculty members are among the 72 newly elected members and 18 foreign associates of the National Academy of Sciences--an honor that recognizes their distinguished and continuing achievements in original research. [more]

April 30 , 2007
Team reverses Alzheimer's-like symptoms in mice : Mice whose brains had atrophied like those of Alzheimer's disease patients regained long-term memories and the ability to learn after living in an enriched environment, reports MIT Professor Li-Huei Tsai and colleagues in the journal Nature. [more]

April 4 , 2007
Computer model mimics blink of a human eye : MIT researchers report that a computer model designed to mimic the way the brain processes visual information performs as well as humans do on rapid categorization tasks. [more]

March 31 , 2007
Hybrid Images "A change on the approach" : Step away from this page... and you'll see something that can be used to probe the workings of your brain, TAKE a good look at the image above - what do you see?  Phantom-like optical illusions are helping us understand how the brain processes vision - try some for yourself here- Hybrid Image. BCS Professor Aude Oliva's work on Hybrid Images is the focus of a recent New Scientist article. [more]

March 29, 2007
Neuroscientists find different brain regions fuel attention - Work could be significant in treatment of ADD: MIT graduate student Timothy J. Buschman and Professor Earl Miller of the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences have found concrete evidence that two radically different brain regions play different roles in the different modes of attention. [more]

March 28, 2007
Child's play is serious study of cause and effect:
It's not child's play to Laura E. Schulz, assistant professor of brain and cognitive sciences at MIT, to figure out what child's play is all about. She addressed her research at a recent event, "Twisting the Lion's Tail: Exploratory Play and Children's Causal Learning." [more]

February 23, 2007
An Unlikely Vision:
Neuroscientists have long been convinced that the first few years of life are a crucial period for brain development--a time when connections between neurons are being forged at a prodigious rate as a baby learns to make sense of the external world. [more]

February 23, 2007
Model mimics neural processes in object recognition:
For the first time, MIT scientists have applied a computer model of how the brain processes visual information to a complex, real world task: recognizing the objects in a busy street scene. [more]

February 14, 2007
MIT study shows those who once were blind can learn to see:
How does the human brain "learn" to see? If the brain is deprived of visual input early in life, can it later learn to see at all? MIT researchers are exploring those questions by studying some unique patients--people who were born blind, or blinded very young, and later had their sight restored. [more]

February 14, 2007
Sinha honored :
Pawan Sinha, associate professor of brain and cognitive sciences, has been named the 2007 recipient of a Troland Research Award. The $50,000 awards, granted by the National Academy of Sciences, are given annually to two researchers to recognize and support research in psychology regarding the relationships of consciousness and the physical world. Sinha was chosen "for elucidating how humans learn to recognize visual objects." The Troland Research Awards were established by a bequest from Leonard T. Troland and have been presented since 1984. [more]

February 12, 2007
Scientists: A good lie detector is hard to find :
In the not-too-distant future, police may request a warrant to search your brain. This was said only partly in jest by one of the panelists at a symposium titled "Is There Science Underlying Truth Detection?" [more]

January 8 , 2007
The Surprise Peptide Researchers have accidentally found a promising way to stop bleeding :
In 2001, Rutledge Ellis-Behnke, PhD '03, a research scientist in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, was doing surgical research on hamster brains. He and his colleagues were using a liquid made of protein fragments known as peptides to encourage the regeneration of neural tissue, a prospective treatment for stroke. In early experiments, the technique appeared to promote the strengthening and rewiring of traumatized neural regions in rodents. But in the lab one day, something seemed awry. [more]

December 18, 2006
Memory experts show sleeping rats may have visual dreams:
Memories of our life stories may be reinforced while we sleep, MIT researchers report Dec. 17 in the advance online edition of Nature Neuroscience. Matthew A. Wilson, professor of brain and cognitive sciences at MIT's Picower Institute for Learning and Memory, and postdoctoral associate Daoyun Ji looked at what happens in rats' brains when they dream about the mazes they ran while they were awake. [more]

October 20 , 2006
Neuroscientists pinpoint brain site for rapid learning :
MIT researchers have provided the first two-pronged evidence--based on both behavior and physiology--that a specific juncture in the memory center of the brain is crucial for rapid learning. [more]

October 12, 2006
Institute Professor Emilio Bizzi is installed as academy president :
Three MIT professors were inducted Oct. 7 into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences as part of the 226th class of fellows. ... The academy also installed Institute Professor Emilio Bizzi, a brain scientist, as its 44th president. [more]

September 27, 2006
Nanoparticles to aid brain imaging, team reports:
If you want to see precisely what the 100 billion neurons in a person's brain are doing, a good way to start is to track calcium as it flows into neurons when they fire. [more]

August 24, 2006
MIT provides first evidence for learning mechanism :
Finally confirming a fact that remained unproven for more than 30 years, researchers at MIT's Picower Institute for Learning and Memory report in the Aug. 25 issue of Science that certain key connections among neurons get stronger when we learn. [more]

August 8, 2006
Professor explores Alzheimer's causes:
Some people live to be 100 without falling victim to Alzheimer's disease. Li-Huei Tsai, who joined MIT this spring as Picower Professor of Neuroscience, wants to know why. [more]

July/ August 2006
Ann Graybiel PS '71 MIT Neuroscience Professor Asks Why Bad Habits Are So Hard to Break:
Ann Graybiel, PS '71, wants to know why good habits are so hard to make and bad habits so hard to break. After completing her bachelor's degree at Harvard University, she began studying neuroanatomy at MIT in the Department of Psychology and Brain Science. MIT was one of the few places in the country where researchers were asking behavioral questions and expecting to find cellular answers. [more]

July 31, 2006
HST professor takes eye-opening look at anesthesia:
Raise your hand if you are more afraid of the prospect of general anesthesia than of surgery itself. If you raised your hand, you are not alone, according to the newest faculty member at the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology (HST). [more]

Jully 11 , 2006
Reverse-Engineering the Brain At MIT, neuroscience and artificial intelligence are beginning to intersect.
Forty years ago, the idea that neuroscience and AI might converge in labs like Miller's would have been all but unthinkable. Back then, the two disciplines operated at arm's length. While neuroscience focused on uncovering and describing the details of neuroanatomy and neural activity, AI was trying to develop an independent, nonbiological path to intelligence. [more]

May 24, 2006
Sur elected fellow of Royal Society:
Mriganka Sur, the Sherman Fairchild Professor of Neuroscience and head of the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, has been elected a fellow of the Royal Society. [more]

April 28, 2006
Brain researchers see visual role for growth factor:
Researchers at MIT's Picower Institute for Learning and Memory have identified an insulin-like growth factor that prevents the usual effects of visual deprivation in the brain. [more]

April 27, 2006
MIT research offers new hope for Alzheimer's patients:
MIT brain researchers have developed a "cocktail" of dietary supplements, now in human clinical trials, that holds promise for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease. [more]

April 26, 2006
Ted Adelson elected to National Academy of Sciences:
Three MIT faculty members are among the 72 newly elected members and 18 foreign associates of the National Academy of Sciences -- an honor that recognizes their distinguished and continuing achievements in original research. [more]

March 24, 2006
Scientists show that children think like scientists:
Even preschoolers approach the world much like scientists: They are convinced that perplexing and unpredictable events can be explained, according to an MIT brain researcher's study in the April issue of Child Development. [more]

March 16, 2006
Picower research finds unexpected activity in visual cortex: For years, neural activity in the brain's visual cortex was thought to have only one job: to create visual perceptions. A new study by researchers at MIT's Picower Institute for Learning and Memory shows that visual cortical activity can serve another purpose -- connecting visual experience with non-visual events. [more]

March 13, 2006
MIT researchers restore vision in rodents blinded by brain damage: Rodents blinded by a severed tract in their brains' visual system had their sight partially restored within weeks, thanks to a tiny biodegradable scaffold invented by MIT bioengineers and neuroscientists. [more]

February 14, 2006
Eyes wide shut: McGovern research sheds light on visual circuits: For the human brain, birth is a great divide. Like marble ready for sculpting, the prenatal brain abounds in extraneous neurons and connections waiting for experiences to carve the neural circuits that enable us to perceive, think and learn. [more]

February 12, 2006
Picower researcher explains how rats think: After running a maze, rats mentally replay their actions -- but backward, like a film played in reverse, a researcher at the Picower Institute for Learning and Memory at MIT reports Feb. 12 in the advance online edition of Nature. [more]

December 27, 2005
Picower researcher finds neuron growth in adult brain: Despite the prevailing belief that adult brain cells don't grow, a researcher at the Picower Institute for Learning and Memory reports in the Dec. 27 issue of Public Library of Science (PLoS) Biology that structural remodeling of neurons does in fact occur in mature brains. [more]

December 5, 2005
Institute dedicates Brain & Cog Complex: The atrium of the Brain and Cognitive Sciences Complex resembled a five-story illuminated manuscript -- complete with golden light, dazzling surfaces and young faces gazing down -- during the dedication ceremony to open the new homes for the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, the McGovern Institute for Brain Research and the Picower Institute for Learning and Memory. [more]

December 2, 2005
MIT opens world's largest neuroscience research center: On Friday afternoon, Dec. 2, MIT officially opened the new Brain and Cognitive Sciences Complex (BCS), the largest neuroscience research center in the world. The complex will advance MIT's efforts to address one of the great scientific challenges of the 21st century: the understanding of the human brain and mind. [more]

December 2, 2005
Brain and Cognitive Sciences Complex Opens: Friday, December 2nd BCS celebrated the opening of its new building. The day began with a symposium honoring 40 years of BCS graduates followed by the formal dedication of the Brain and Cognitive Sciences Complex. [more]

November 29, 2005
Mriganka Sur sees 'great synergy' in new complex: In advance of this week's opening of the new Brain and Cognitive Sciences Complex, News Office writer Elizabeth Thomson conducted the following interview with Mriganka Sur, head of the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences. [more]

November 29, 2005
New architecture brings scientists together - Three tenants share neuroscience complex: Just over two years ago, MIT broke ground on what would become the largest neuroscience complex in the world. [more]

November 17, 2005
Brain structures 'tune in' to rhythms to coordinate activity:
Different brain regions working together may coordinate by locking into an oscillation frequency the way a radio tuner locks into a station, report researchers from the Picower Institute for Learning and Memory at MIT in the Nov. 15 issue of the journal PLoS (Public Library of Science) Biology. [more]

October 3, 2005
MIT Launches Effort to Understand Autism: MIT brain researchers are undertaking an ambitious, multifaceted approach to understanding the genetic, molecular and behavioral aspects of autism, with the help of a $7.5 million grant from the New York-based Simons Foundation founded by James and Marilyn Simons. [more]

July 1, 2005
BCS Moves to a New Building (BCSP):
For years, talks about a new building existed only in our imaginations. Then, a daunting steel skeleton outlined the image of what the building would look like. Now, in the final stages of development, we can picture details of where to put that chair and how to hang this plant. The building is still on schedule to be ready for the move this fall. [more]

June 10 , 2005
BCS Hosts Mini-Symposium : This summer's Vision Mini-Symposium features repeat performances of presentations from the Fifth Annual Meeting of VSS, on Friday 10 June 2005. Talks in E25-117 from 1 to 3pm, posters in E25 atrium from 2 to 5pm.

June 6 , 2005
Largest Class Ever: On June 3, 2005, forty-seven BCS undergraduates donned their caps and gowns marking not only their graduation, but also the largest undergraduate class in BCS history. [more]

May 26 , 2005
Research explains how the brain finds Waldo: At any given moment, the world bombards the senses with more information than the brain can process, and for more than a century scientists and psychologists have debated how the brain filters out distractions and focuses attention on the things that matter. Using the visual system as a model, Professor Robert Desimone, director of the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT, and his former colleagues at the National Institutes of Health show that neurons synchronize their signals to command attention, like a chorus rising above the din of noisy chatter in a crowded room. [more]

April 22 , 2005
Birds' Brains Reveal Source of Songs: Scientists have yearned to understand how the chirps and warbles of a young bird morph into the recognizable and very distinct melodies of its parents. Neuroscientists at the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT now have come one step closer to understanding that process. They've shown for the first time how a particular brain region in birds serves as the source of vocal creativity. [more]

March 30 , 2005
MIT Researchers Identify Gene Involved in Building Brains: A tiny molecule is key to determining the size and shape of the developing brain, researchers from the Picower Institute for Learning and Memory at MIT reported in the March issue of Nature Neuroscience. [more]

February 17 , 2005
Teams Build Robots that Walk Like Humans: Three independent research teams, including one from [BCS at] MIT, have built walking robots that mimic humans in terms of their gait, energy-efficiency and control. [more]

January 24, 2005
Spotlighting the Brain: Neurologist Thomas Byrne offered a two-hour IAP class in neuroscience as an introduction to 9.91, "A Clinical Approach to the Human Brain," which he will teach at MIT this spring. [more]

December 16, 2004

Cell's Tiny Power Source Critical for Synapse Function: Mitochondria, the tiny power plants inside all plant and animal cells, play a critical role in the health and well-being of synapses, neuroscientists at MIT's Picower Center for Learning and Memory report. [more]

November 17, 2004

Team Finds Genetic Key to High-Level Thinking: A gene expressed only in brain areas responsible for high-level thinking and feeling may be key to the brain's ability to respond rapidly to new input, scientists at MIT's Picower Center for Learning and Memory and colleagues report. [more]

October 29, 2004
Brain and Cognitive Sciences Facilities Taking Shape: Students returned to MIT this fall to discover that yet another major addition to the campus is taking shape: the new facilities for the brain and cognitive sciences on Vassar Street, scheduled for completion next year. [more]

September 27, 2004
Animal Learning Discussed at Symposium: Birds that are genetically programmed to sing and the effect of pheromones on the mouse brain were among the topics covered recently by an international contingent of respected brain researchers at MIT's Picower Center. [more]

September 21, 2004
Desimone to Direct McGovern Institute: The McGovern Institute at MIT, a leading research and teaching institute committed to advancing the understanding of the human mind and communications, has announced the selection of Robert Desimone as the next director. [more]

September 8, 2004
Cellular Clue to Memory: Researchers at MIT's Picower Center for Learning and Memory are one step closer to understanding how brain synapses make chameleon-like changes in their structure and composition depending on the input they receive. [more]

August 23, 2004
Research Shows Adult Brain Has More Plasticity Than Previously Believed: In a Nature Neuroscience paper, BCS researchers show that mice "rewired" to receive visual cues in the hearing region of their brains learned to respond to it as if they had heard instead of seen it. [more]

August 10, 2004
The Right Name Can Affect How Others Rate Your Looks: BCS graduate student Amy Perfors' study on the effect of sound symbolism on the perception of facial attractiveness receives flurry of media attention. Titled "What's in a Name?" it was presented at the 26th Annual Conference for Cognitive Science. [more]

July 21, 2004

Study May Hold Key to Boosting Brainpower: The finding by an MIT neuroscientist that a tiny molecular change signficantly alters the number of synapse receptors may one day lead to the ability to boost brainpower in the area of the brain where long-term memories are stored. [more]

June 10, 2004
Synapse Size and Shape Key in Storing Long-Term Memory: The Neuroscientists at MIT have shown for the first time that storage of long-term memories depends on the size and shape of synapses among neurons in the cerebral cortex. [more]

May 19, 2004
BCS Professor Bear's Work Offers Hope for Treating Retardation: By blocking a single brain chemical, many of the psychiatric and neurological disabilities associated with a primary cause of mental retardation could be treated, according to MIT neuroscientist Mark Bear. [more]

May 19, 2004
Tonegawa Makes Pitch: Susumu Tonegawa is a Nobel Prize-winning neuroscientist, but his greatest achievement may be his ability to help the Red Sox win baseball games through the influence of brain waves. [more]

April 1, 2004
Visual Cues Provide Clues: MIT scientists are reporting new insights into how the human brain recognizes objects, especially faces, in work that could lead to improved machine vision systems. [more]

March 10, 2004
Brain Circuitry Findings Could Shape Computer Design: Guosong Liu, neuroscientist at Picower Center at MIT, reports new information on neuron design and function that could lead to new directions in how computers are made. [more]

March 3, 2004
Memories with Emotion Light Up Areas of Brain: Memories light up the corners of our mind. Scientific evidence for this notion comes from studies using magnetic resonance imaging to examine the living human brain. [more]

February 5, 2004
Memory Mechanism Discovered: MIT neuroscientists have discovered a new brain mechanism controlling the formation of lasting memories. [more]

December 19, 2003
BCS Launches New Web Site: The new BCS web site features a new look and feel as well as enhanced functionality to make it even easier to use. [more]

December 19, 2003
Building Framework Nears Completion: Only a few months after breaking ground, the new BCS building is taking shape as its steel framework rises over Main St. [more]

October 23, 2003
MIT work may help prevent loss of brain synapses: By discovering one of the first mechanisms through which brain synapses are dismantled, an MIT neuroscientist sheds new light on how our brains eliminate connections between neurons. The work was reported Thursday, Oct. 23 on Science magazine's Science Express web site. [more]

September 10, 2003
Peptides: the 21st century's building blocks: Thousands of years after humans domesticated farm animals, they're moving on to a different sort of workhorse: molecules. [more]

June 12, 2003
MIT researchers: vision brain cells are smarter than previously thought: Contrary to popular belief, cells in the brain's primary visual cortex are "smart" enough to help determine where the eyes will look next, MIT researchers report in the June 13 issue of Science. [more]

June 4, 2003
Brain and cognitive sciences awards: The Brain and Cognitive Sciences Department honors the graduate students who have made a difference. [more]

April 9, 2003
Brain and cognitive sciences project on deck: Preparation for construction of MIT's new brain and cognitive sciences project will affect the northeast area of campus in several ways over the coming weeks. [more]