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  • Biologists use microfluidics chips to watch worm behavior | Newswire
    in order to keep it in focus The behavior chip is just large enough for a single worm to move forward and backward while the olfactory chip keeps a worm contained in a narrow space with just the tip of its nose sticking out into a controlled odor stream We ve been having a lot of fun just figuring out what you can and can t do Bargmann says One of the things they could do was monitor C elegans neural activity in real time the first time that had been achieved in the creature s olfactory system Then once they knew that the two chip techniques worked the researchers applied them to following the neural path from a stimulus to behavior With postdoc and coauthor Sreekanth Chalasani Bargmann and Chronis focused on one of the worm s dominant olfactory neurons called the AWC and their results show that the neurons work nothing like they expected We think of these neurons as olfactory neurons but when we gave them odors they did nothing Bargmann says And we gave them more and more odors and they did a whole lot of nothing And after what seemed like years of frustration we realized that when you took odors away they responded The neurons it turns out are instead dedicated to food seeking They become activated when food odor disappears and remain active until the odor returns The amount of activity of the neuron depends on how strong the odor is and how long it lasts We can see the transformation of previous history into a single cell s response Bargmann says So somewhere in the background while it s apparently silent it s actually noticing how long it s been silent and using that to calibrate how big a response it will

    Original URL path: http://newswire.rockefeller.edu/2007/11/08/biologists-use-microfluidics-chips-to-watch-worm-behavior/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Promising class of new cancer drugs causes memory loss in mice | Newswire
    be the case for other drug variants tested in patients Several companies are testing the inhibitors using unique formulations that they ve optimized in proprietary ways for example by adding chemical groups to make a compound more targeted or effective which might make it more difficult for the drug to cross the blood brain barrier Many patients with hard to treat cancers have already received these experimental drugs The Rockefeller scientists say their findings suggests more research is needed to determine whether the therapies can enter the brain since that could potentially cause some unwanted side effects We found that if a drug blocks a BET protein throughout the body and that drug can get into the brain you could very well produce neurological side effects says Korb Allis Korb and their colleagues decided to test BET inhibitors in the brain BET proteins help regulate the process of transcribing genes into proteins a key step in cell division Since neurons divide less frequently than other cell types scientists hadn t given much consideration to the role of BET proteins in the brain says Korb During the study the researchers used a compound that was designed to thwart the activity of a specific BET protein called Brd4 They used the original version of the drug called Jq1 says Korb which they knew could cross the blood brain barrier The researchers added the drug to mouse neurons grown in the laboratory then stimulated the cells in a way that mimicked the process of memory formation Normally when neurons receive this type of signal they begin transcribing genes into proteins resulting in the formation of new memories a process that is partly regulated by Brd4 To turn a recent experience into a long term memory you need to have gene transcription in response to these extracellular signals says Korb Indeed when the researchers stimulated mouse neurons with signals that mimicked those they would normally receive in the brain they saw massive changes in gene transcription But when they performed this experiment after adding Jq1 they saw much less activity After administering a Brd4 inhibitor we no longer saw those changes in transcription after stimuli says Korb To test how the drug affected mice s memories researchers placed the animals in a box with two objects they ve never seen before such as pieces of lego or tiny figurines Mice typically explore anything unfamiliar climbing and sniffing around it After a few minutes the researchers took the mice out of the box One day later they put them back in this time with one of the objects from the day before and another unfamiliar one Mice that received the placebo drug were much more interested in the new object presumably because the one from the day before was familiar But mice treated with Jq1 were equally interested in both objects suggesting they didn t remember the previous day s experience Next the researchers took their findings one step further If Jq1 reduces molecular activity

    Original URL path: http://newswire.rockefeller.edu/2015/08/24/promising-class-of-new-cancer-drugs-might-cause-memory-loss-in-mice/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Brd4 | Newswire
    neurological changes in mice The findings underscore the need for more research to determine whether these compounds can enter the brain where they potentially might cause side effects such as memory loss More Tags BET inhibitor Brd4 cancer David Allis epigenetics Erica Korb genetics and genomics Memory neurosciences and behavior robert darnell Search for Categories Science News Awards and Honors Campus News Grants Gifts Topics Video Archive 2015 2014 2013

    Original URL path: http://newswire.rockefeller.edu/tag/brd4/ (2016-02-13)
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  • David Allis | Newswire
    Brd4 cancer David Allis epigenetics Erica Korb genetics and genomics Memory neurosciences and behavior robert darnell December 10 2014 Science News Discovery links shift in metabolism to stem cell renewal New research links stem cell metabolism with those cells decision to pick a fate or renew themselves In experiments exposure to a key metabolite called alpha ketoglutarate enhanced the renewal of mouse embryonic stem cells More Tags alpha ketoglutarate Bryce

    Original URL path: http://newswire.rockefeller.edu/tag/david-allis/ (2016-02-13)
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  • robert darnell | Newswire
    liver cells need the microRNA molecules the liver produces to regulate its genes Researchers found that by co opting one microRNA the virus may cause changes in gene expression in liver cells More Tags Charles Rice hepatitis C Joseph Luna Laboratory of Molecular Neuro oncology Laboratory of Virology and Infectious Disease liver cancer microRNA miRNA 122 robert darnell April 29 2014 Awards and Honors Robert Darnell elected to National Academy

    Original URL path: http://newswire.rockefeller.edu/tag/robert-darnell/ (2016-02-13)
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  • In the News – The Telegraph – McEwen | Newswire
    neurological changes that occurred after Riluzole treatment we discovered one way in which the brain s ability to reorganise itself its neuroplasticity can be marshalled to protect it against some of the deterioration that can accompany old age at least in rodents Tags Bruce S McEwen Memory newswire rockefeller edu Jeffrey M Friedman and Leslie B Vosshall named 2014 AAAS Fellows Facial motion activates a dedicated network within the brain

    Original URL path: http://newswire.rockefeller.edu/2014/12/23/in-the-news-the-telegraph-mcewen/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Acute stress improves working memory, research suggests | Newswire
    Milliken Hatch Laboratory of Neuroendocrinology at The Rockefeller University With Rockefeller postdoctoral fellow Ilia Karatsoreos and University at Buffalo collaborators McEwen designed experiments to test the effect of acute stress on working memory First researchers trained rats in a maze until they could complete it correctly 60 to 70 percent of the time When the rodents reached this level of accuracy for two days half were put through a 20 minute forced swim an acute stressor and then were challenged with the maze again The stressed rats made fewer mistakes as they went through the maze both four hours after the swim and one day post stress compared to the nonstressed rats To determine if the corticosterone neuropathway was responsible for the improved memory as proposed researchers injected one group of rats before the forced swim with a medicinal compound that blocks the action of the stress hormone and injected another group with saline Results showed that the saline group performed better in the maze than the blocked group It is known that stress has both positive and negative actions in the brain but the underlying mechanism is elusive said Zhen Yan professor of physiology and biophysics at UB Several key brain regions involved in cognition and emotions including the prefrontal cortex have been identified as the primary target of corticosteroid the major stress hormone Our current study identifies a novel mechanism that underlies the impact of acute stress on working memory a cognitive process depending on glutamate receptor mediated excitatory signals in prefrontal cortex circuits The investigators have expanded this research in several directions In a paper currently under review they have identified the key signaling molecules that link acute stress to the enhancement of glutamate receptors and working memory In addition noted Yan we have discovered that chronic

    Original URL path: http://newswire.rockefeller.edu/2009/07/27/acute-stress-improves-working-memory-research-suggests/ (2016-02-13)
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  • Gaby Maimon honored with a McKnight Scholar Award | Newswire
    that if solved at the basic level would have immediate and significant impact on clinically relevant issues Using the fruit fly Drosophilia melanogaster Maimon aims to link the electrical activity of neurons and the biochemical action of molecules to their computational roles in behavior He has a particular interest in understanding how central brain structures distant from the sensory and motor periphery govern behavioral choice By seeking a comprehensive understanding of how small nervous systems perform specific neural calculations he hopes to gain insight into the complete set of integrative processes in larger brains Recent work for instance revealed that flies become partially blind when they turn in flight much as humans do during rapid eye movements suggesting flies could be used to better understand dynamic perceptual silencing across the animal kingdom including in humans Dr Maimon received his undergraduate degree from Cornell University and his Ph D from Harvard University in 2005 working in the laboratory of John Assad He conducted his postdoctoral training from 2005 to 2010 at the California Institute of Technology with Michael Dickinson He joined The Rockefeller University as assistant professor in 2011 His honors include the 2012 Presidential Early Career Award for Science and Engineering the 2012 NIH Director s New Innovator Award the Searle Scholar Award the Alfred P Sloan Research Fellowship the New York Stem Cell Foundation s Robertson Neuroscience Investigator Award and the Irma T Hirschl Monique Weill Caulier Trusts Research Award He was named one of Popular Science s Brilliant Ten in 2011 The McKnight Endowment Fund is an independent charitable organization established by The McKnight Foundation William L McKnight led the 3M company for three decades and had a personal interest in memory and its diseases He set aside part of his legacy to support research for those suffering

    Original URL path: http://newswire.rockefeller.edu/2015/05/15/gaby-maimon-honored-with-a-mcknight-scholar-award/ (2016-02-13)
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