Innate immune responses to high-fat diets lead to obesity

Why is eating a high fat diet a recipe for obesity? According to a new study from the RIKEN Center for Integrative Medical Sciences (IMS) in Japan, the answer involves the activity of a specific type of immune cell that lives in the small intestine. Published in the journal Cell Reports, a series of experiments shows that without group-2 innate […]

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Antidepressants can lead to reductions in behavioral and neural responses to pain empathy

Depression is a disorder that often comes along with strong impairments of social functioning. Until recently, researchers assumed that acute episodes of depression also impair empathy, an essential skill for successful social interactions and understanding others. However, previous research had been mostly carried out in groups of patients who were on antidepressant medication. Novel insights of an interdisciplinary collaboration involving […]

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Scientists identify a novel neural circuit mediating visually evoked innate defensive responses

Fear overgeneralization, a condition that limits the ability to discriminate between safety and threat, is an important pathological characteristic of anxiety-related syndromes such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) and panic disorder. However, unlike traditional conditioned fear, the mechanism of processing innate fear is largely unknown. Prof. Wang Liping and his colleagues Zhou Zheng and Liu Xuemei […]

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Brain responses to language in toddlers with autism linked to altered gene expression

An international team of scientists, led by researchers at the University of Cyprus and University of California San Diego School of Medicine, have identified a previously unknown, large-scale association between molecular gene expression activity in blood leukocyte cells and altered neural responses to speech in toddlers with autism as measured with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). The findings were published […]

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