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profoundly yours the abledbody blog

Researchers are experimenting with a drug, that, when delivered to certain areas of the brain, may help erase certain memories. According to the New York Times, the drug blocks the activity of a substance that the brain apparently needs to retain much of its learned information. And if enhanced, the substance — a molecule called PKMzeta — could help ward off dementias and other memory problems. Such experiments are part of a growing interest in the field of neuroscience, or the study of the brain. The National Institutes of Health last year spent $5.2 billion, nearly 20 percent of its total budget, on brain-related projects, according to the Society for Neuroscience. According to the New York Times, researchers found that brain cells activated by an experience keep one another on biological speed-dial, like a group of people joined in common witness of some striking event. Call on one and word quickly goes ... keep reading »
I’ve often argued that people with physical disabilities are functionally more ‘interesting’ human beings because they’ve incorporated machines into their brains and bodies. For those of you who haven’t already seen Iron Man, the superhero escapes from a cave in Afghanistan in part by building a pair of robotic legs. This sci-fi movie is more grounded in reality than it appears. Earlier this month, researchers at a university in Japan unveiled a robotic suit that reads brain signals and helps disabled people walk. The suit, known as HAL — short for “hybrid assistive limb” — is available to rent in Japan for $2,200 a month. (Cost to buy will be around $15,000-$20,000). This invention will have far-reaching benefits for the disabled as well as the elderly, giving them the “potential to lift up to 10-times the weight they normally could.” Other researchers around the world, including those at MIT, are ... keep reading »

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