Dana Newsletter September

Below is the content that appeared in the latest Dana email newsletter. You can sign up to receive this (and other Dana email alerts and/or print publications) by going here.

Brain-to-Brain Interfaces: When Reality Meets Science Fiction

by Miguel A. L. Nicolelis, M.D., Ph.D.

The scientist behind the robotic exoskeleton demonstration at the opening of last summer’s soccer World Cup writes about the research that led up to the historic event and its potential to help paraplegics and others suffering from spinal-cord injuries to move by controlling machines with their thoughts. From Cerebrum, our online magazine of ideas.

See also: “Truth, Justice, and the NFL Way,” a book review of League of Denial: The NFL, Concussions, and the Battle for Truth

The Brain Inflamed

Scientists are finding evidence that neuroinflammation can alter mood and cognition, perhaps enough to help cause psychiatric disorders.

Taking Out The Garbage: New Hope for Treating Neurodegeneration

Dementias, ALS, and Huntington’s show different outward symptoms, but researchers theorize the disease process may be similar — a buildup of proteins that normally are cleared away.

More Evidence That Vitamin D Protects Against Alzheimer’s

Lower vitamin D levels linked to higher dementia risk in two separate studies.

The Link Between Depression, Sleep, and Stress

Researchers discussed the molecular mechanisms linking sleep to depression and stress at the 9th FENS Forum of Neuroscience in Milan last month.

Closing the Gap Between Cochlear Implants and Natural Hearing

Approaches include stimulating the growth of nerve fibers to improve sound perception and scanning the cortex to improve the device’s programming.

Can Hearing Loss Predict — or Lead to — Cognitive Decline?

Possible links between impaired hearing and loss of cognitive abilities raise the tantalizing possibility that restoring hearing could slow cognitive decline.

A Victory for Clinician Scientists

Recipients of a Lasker Award this year, Alim Louis Benabid and Mahlon DeLong are the epitome of clinical scientists, going from the patient to the laboratory and back to the patient. Clinical scientists just getting started in their careers can learn from them, says Guy McKhann, professor of neurology and neuroscience at Johns Hopkins University.

Alliance Members Win Lasker Award

Dana Alliance member Mahlon DeLong, along with European Dana Alliance member Alim Louis Benabid, won a Lasker Clinical Medical Research Award for their work to develop deep brain stimulation to help those with Parkinson’s disease.

From the Dana blog.

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