Revolutionise Neuroscience, Pee in a Cup

ResearchBlogging.org

The title might seem a bit melodramatic, but I’m pretty amazed by some research I found.

In a recent article from Nature Methods a research group have put forward the possibility of generating Neural Stem Cells (NSC’s) from urine.

Ok so for those who don’t understand all of the above, this is pretty big! (hence why it’s in a Nature Journal). Everyone has heard of stem cells and their possibly magical healing abilities, replacing damaged brain/heart/liver (more…)

How Bread Makes You Better and Florida Makes You Slower

ResearchBlogging.org

According to a new(ish) study, nice smells make us nice people.

I caught wind of this story (excuse the pun) on the radio the other day and thought I’d do a bit of background to find out what the research is about. I found this article in the Daily Mail, an infamously crap source of science news, but more importantly I located the paper(1).

OK so first off, this has nothing to do with bread! Every news article, radio spot or anything makes mention of bread. The paper only uses it as an example, preferring the phrase ‘ambient odour’ or ‘pleasant scent’. Many would say bread is included in this category, the primary investigator agrees. However this could also include perfumes and many other forms of cooking.

The second point I would like to make is that this paper focuses on what some people would call ‘priming’. This is where your subconscious mind takes in information which then affects your future choices without you realising. This is more or less the way subliminal advertising and product placement works. To be fair, the papers may as well have (more…)

Want a Nobel Prize? Eat Chocolate

A study published in the NEJM last month(1) seems to show a pretty convincing positive trend that those countries who consume more chocolate per capita also receive more Nobel Prizes.

The author of the study, Dr. Franz Messerli, continues to associate this trend with one of the key active ingredients in chocolate (flavonol’s). Flavonol’s have previously been implicated in increased brain performance and brain related anti-ageing effects. OK so I’m willing to accept (more…)