From middle-age, the brains of obese individuals display differences in white matter similar to those in lean individuals ten years their senior, according to new research led by the University of Cambridge. White matter is the tissue that connects areas of the brain and allows for information to be communicated between regions.
Scientists have mapped the structural changes that occur in teenagers’ brains as they develop, showing how these changes may help explain why the first signs of mental health problems often arise during late adolescence.
Slow, slow, quick quick, slow: Scientists discover how proteins in the brain build up rapidly in Alzheimer’s disease18 Jul 2016
Cambridge researchers have identified – and shown that it may be possible to control – the mechanism that leads to the rapid build-up of the disease-causing ‘plaques’ that are characteristic of Alzheimer’s disease.
A difference in values can be a major stumbling block for family relationships, writes Dr Lucy Blake from the Centre for Family Research for The Conversation website, and these may have been exacerbated in the recent Brexit debate. So what practical steps can people take to help heal rifts?
People who are addicted to cocaine are particularly prone to developing habits that render their behaviour resistant to change, regardless of the potentially devastating consequences, suggests new research from the University of Cambridge. The findings may have important implications for the treatment of cocaine addiction as they help explain why such individuals take drugs even when they are aware of the negative consequences, and why they find their behaviour so difficult to change.
‘Map’ of teenage brain provides strong evidence of link between serious antisocial behaviour and brain development16 Jun 2016
The brains of teenagers with serious antisocial behaviour problems differ significantly in structure to those of their peers, providing the clearest evidence to date that their behaviour stems from changes in brain development in early life, according to new research led by the University of Cambridge and the University of Southampton, in collaboration with the University of Rome “Tor Vergata” in Italy.
Women are almost twice as likely to experience anxiety as men, according to a review of existing scientific literature, led by the University of Cambridge. The study also found that people from Western Europe and North America are more likely to suffer from anxiety than people from other cultures.
The male and female brains have more in common than media reports often suggest, argues Julia Gottwald, a third year PhD student at the Department of Psychiatry. Writing in the student science magazine BlueSci, she explains what we understand about the similarities and differences in our brains and why this is an important area of research.
Urban birds are less afraid of litter than their country cousins, according to a new study, which suggests they may learn that litter in cities is not dangerous. The research could help birds to adapt to urban settings better, helping them to survive increasing human encroachment on their habitats.
The importance of friendships and family support in helping prevent depression among teenagers has been highlighted in research from the University of Cambridge. The study, published in the open access journal PLOS ONE, also found that teenagers who had grown up in a difficult family environment were more likely than their peers to be bullied at school.