Intelligence News -- ScienceDaily Intelligence - nature or nurture? Researchers find a gene for intelligence and also that a bigger brain matters, yet other recent articles show how motivation affects learning.

  • 'Selfish brain' wins out when competing with muscle power, study finds
    on October 20, 2017 at 1:22 pm

    New research on our internal trade-off when physical and mental performance are put in direct competition has found that cognition takes less of a hit, suggesting more energy is diverted to the brain than body muscle. Researchers say the findings support the 'selfish brain' theory of human evolution. […]

  • Brain training can improve our understanding of speech in noisy places
    on October 19, 2017 at 6:30 pm

    For many people with hearing challenges, trying to follow a conversation in a crowded restaurant or other noisy venue is a major struggle, even with hearing aids. Now researchers have some good news: time spent playing a specially designed, brain-training audiogame could help. […]

  • Phones keeping students from concentrating during lectures
    on October 19, 2017 at 2:08 pm

    Daily, people spend over three hours on their phones. While ever-smarter digital devices have made many aspects of our lives more efficient, a growing body of evidence suggests that, by continuously distracting us, they are harming our ability to concentrate. Studies across the world show that students constantly use their phones when they are in class. A strong body of evidence suggests that media use during lectures is associated with lower academic performance. […]

  • Life in the city: Living near a forest keeps your amygdala healthier
    on October 18, 2017 at 3:35 pm

    A new study examined the relationship between the availability of nature near city dwellers' homes and their brain health. Its findings are relevant for urban planners among others. […]

  • Cocaine use during adolescence is even more harmful than during adulthood
    on October 18, 2017 at 3:35 pm

    Scientists found that addicts who began using cocaine before and after the age of 18 showed differences in sustained attention and working memory, among other brain functions. The research, made under controlled drug abstinence condition, measured cocaine's impact on more than a hundred drug users' cognition, and recommended multidisciplinary treatment for patients with an accentuated cognitive deficit. […]

  • What training exercise boosts brain power best? New research finds out
    on October 17, 2017 at 3:43 pm

    One of the two brain-training methods most scientists use in research is significantly better in improving memory and attention. It also results in more significant changes in brain activity. […]

  • Mechanism explains how seizures may lead to memory loss
    on October 16, 2017 at 6:47 pm

    A team of researchers reveals a mechanism that can explain how even relatively infrequent seizures can lead to long-lasting cognitive deficits in animal models. […]

  • Brain training shows promise for patients with bipolar disorder
    on October 16, 2017 at 5:27 pm

    Computerized brain training can result in improved cognitive skills in individuals with bipolar disorder, researchers have discovered for the first time. […]

  • Learning during development is regulated by an unexpected brain region
    on October 16, 2017 at 4:21 pm

    Half a century of research on how the brain learns to integrate visual inputs from the two eyes has provided important insights in critical period regulation, leading to the conclusion that it occurs within the cortex. Scientists have now made the surprising discovery that a brain region that passes on input from the eyes to the cortex also plays a crucial role in opening the critical period of binocular vision. […]

  • Brain waves reflect different types of learning
    on October 12, 2017 at 4:28 pm

    Researchers have, for the first time, identified neural signatures of explicit and implicit learning. […]

  • Being unaware of memory loss predicts Alzheimer's disease, new study shows
    on October 10, 2017 at 5:39 pm

    While memory loss is an early symptom of Alzheimer's disease, its presence doesn't mean a person will develop dementia. A new study has found a clinically useful way to predict who won't develop Alzheimer's disease, based on patients' awareness of their memory problems. […]

  • Cannabidiol benefits and mechanisms shown in mouse study of Dravet syndrome
    on October 10, 2017 at 2:56 pm

    Cannabidiol, a non-intoxicating derivative from cannabis, has been shown to reduce seizures and autism-like behaviors in a mouse model of a genetic disorder, Dravet syndrome. Children with this devastating condition have difficult-to-treat epilepsy, cognitive impairments, and problems with social interactions. The researchers also studied how therapeutic effects of cannabidiol relate to changes in signaling between certain brain neurons. […]

  • Human brain recalls visual features in reverse order than it detects them
    on October 9, 2017 at 7:49 pm

    New research has contributed to solving a paradox of perception, literally upending models of how the brain constructs interpretations of the outside world. When observing a scene, the brain first processes details -- spots, lines and simple shapes -- and uses that information to build internal representations of more complex objects, like cars and people. But during recall, the brain remembers those larger concepts first. This could shed light on concepts such as eyewitness testimony to autism. […]

  • Screen children with reading difficulties for hearing problems
    on October 5, 2017 at 11:02 pm

    A new study found 25 percent of its young participants who had reading difficulties showed mild or moderate hearing impairment, of which their parents and teachers were unaware. […]

  • Better genetic decoding of neurodevelopmental disorders
    on October 5, 2017 at 6:17 pm

    New research into improving the genetic decoding of neurodevelopmental disorders promises to help future diagnosis of children with such conditions, including intellectual disability, autism or schizophrenia. […]

  • 'Khamisiyah Plume' linked to brain and memory effects in Gulf War vets
    on October 5, 2017 at 2:40 pm

    Gulf War veterans with low-level exposure to chemical weapons show lasting adverse effects on brain structure and memory function, reports a study. […]

  • Newborns with congenital heart disease show signs of brain impairment even before cardiac surgery
    on October 5, 2017 at 2:27 pm

    Using a novel imaging technique, researchers demonstrate for the first time that the brains of high-risk infants with congenital heart disease already show signs of functional impairment even before they undergo corrective open heart surgery. […]

  • Brain wiring affects how people perform specific tasks
    on October 5, 2017 at 2:26 pm

    The way a person's brain is 'wired' directly impacts how well they perform simple and complex tasks, according to a new study. […]

  • Mental training changes brain structure and reduces social stress
    on October 4, 2017 at 6:26 pm

    Meditation can have positive effects on our health and well-being. However it has been unclear which mental practice has which effect, and what the underlying processes are. Researchers have discovered that different trainings affect either our attention or our social competencies and modify different brain networks. One mental technique was able to reduce the stress hormone cortisol. These results may influence the adaptation of mental trainings in clinics and education. […]

  • Study pokes holes in fetal alcohol hypothesis
    on October 4, 2017 at 4:23 pm

    A new study appears to challenge the theory that cells in the brain's immune system are the culprit behind the neurological damage that occurs in children exposed to alcohol while in the womb. […]

  • Genre may impact cognitive training using video games
    on October 3, 2017 at 1:39 pm

    Video games are quickly becoming a hot topic in cognitive training. Many see them as a potential tool to help patients improve their performance and memory, yet little is known about how different types of video games may affect white matter in the brain and cognition. […]

  • New insights into how sleep helps the brain to reorganize itself
    on October 2, 2017 at 12:56 pm

    A study has given new insights into how sleep contributes to brain plasticity -- the ability for our brain to change and reorganise itself -- and could pave the way for new ways to help people with learning and memory disorders. […]

  • Physical abuse and punishment impact children's academic performance
    on September 29, 2017 at 7:22 pm

    Scientists have found that physical abuse was associated with decreases in children's cognitive performance, while non-abusive forms of physical punishment were independently associated with reduced school engagement and increased peer isolation. […]

  • Video gamers have an advantage in learning
    on September 29, 2017 at 4:51 pm

    Neuropsychologists let video gamers compete against non-gamers in a learning competition. During the test, the video gamers performed significantly better and showed an increased brain activity in the brain areas that are relevant for learning. […]

  • New functions of hippocampus unveiled
    on September 29, 2017 at 1:32 pm

    A research team has made major breakthrough in unveiling the mysteries of the brain to reveal functions of an important region, hippocampus, not known to scientists before. […]

  • Transcranial electrical stimulation shows promise for treating mild traumatic brain injury
    on September 29, 2017 at 1:30 pm

    Using a form of low-impulse electrical stimulation to the brain, documented by neuroimaging, researchers report significantly improved neural function in participants with mild traumatic brain injury (TBI). […]

  • Intriguing link between sleep, cognition and schizophrenia identified
    on September 28, 2017 at 12:47 pm

    Many people with schizophrenia have trouble with learning and memory. A new study has found intriguing links between sleep, cognition and a compound called kynurenine. These links could illuminate the mechanism that causes cognitive problems among those with the disease, and could point the way to new treatments to reduce some of the disease's symptoms. […]

  • Our brain's filing system for storing experiences uncovered
    on September 27, 2017 at 4:36 pm

    A team of neuroscientists has uncovered how our brains organize, over time, our experiences: that is, according to their similarities. […]

  • Iron supplements have long-term benefits for low birth-weight babies
    on September 27, 2017 at 4:36 pm

    Babies classified as low birth weight (under 2,500 grams) are at risk of iron deficiency, which is linked to impaired neurological development. A long-term randomized study now shows that providing such babies with iron supplements can prevent behavioral problems at school age. […]

  • Brain disconnections may contribute to Parkinson's hallucinations
    on September 27, 2017 at 1:33 pm

    Disconnections of brain areas involved in attention and visual processing may contribute to visual hallucinations in individuals with Parkinson's disease, according to a new study. The disconnected brain areas seen on functional MRI may be valuable in predicting the development of visual hallucinations in patients with Parkinson's disease. […]