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Neurobiology News

Jennifer Achiro, a neuroscience doctoral student in Bottjer’s laboratory, is first author in the study examining the activity of neurons in songbirds’ brains using electrodes to record the activity of individual neurons. Photo by Amy Garrison.

Worth Crowing About

September 6, 2013

USC Dornsife scientists have discovered a population of neurons in the brains of juvenile songbirds that are necessary for allowing the birds to recognize the vocal sounds they are learning to imitate. These neurons encode a…

Valter Longo, associate professor of neurobiology in USC Dornsife, is corresponding author of an <em>Aging Cell</em> study indicating that mice with Alzheimer's disease showed improvements when given a protein-restricted diet. Photo by Dietmar Quistorf.

Low-Protein Slows Alzheimer’s

February 19, 2013

Mice with many of the pathologies of Alzheimer’s disease showed fewer signs of the condition when given a protein-restricted diet supplemented with specific amino acids every other week for four months. At advanced…

Imagine if you never felt cold. USC Dornsife's David McKemy made that happen in lab models, eliminating the nerve cells responsible for chilly sensations while keeping the ability to feel heat and touch. Ultimately, their findings might lead to ways to control pain without numbing all sensations. Photo by Alexandra Bissonnette.

Chilling Discovery

February 14, 2013

USC Dornsife neuroscientists have isolated chills at a cellular level, identifying the sensory network of neurons in the skin that relays the sensation of cold. David McKemy, associate professor of neurobiology in USC…

Dion Dickman studies synapse development, function and plasticity. The New Scholar Award in Aging will fund his research into the mechanisms of synaptic plasticity in the nervous system during the aging process. Photo by Michelle Salzman.

Dion Dickman Wins Award to Fund Research on Neurobiology of Aging

July 3, 2012

Dion Dickman, assistant professor of biological sciences in USC Dornsife, has received a 2012 New Scholar Award in Aging from the Ellison Medical Foundation. Over the next four years, the $400,000 award will fund…

USC Dornsife neuroscientist Alan Watts. Photo by Phil Channing.

USC Scientists Find Missing Link in Regulation of Glucose

December 16, 2011

A team led by USC neuroscientist Alan Watts identified for the first time a biochemical signal that helps regulate the amount of glucose in the blood. A better understanding of the way the body naturally deals with …

Emily Liman: Sparkling Study

Sour Research, Sweet Results

November 24, 2010

This Thanksgiving, when you nibble the cranberry sauce and the tartness smacks your tongue as hard as that snide comment from your sister, consider the power of sour. Of the five taste sensations — sweet, bitter,…

Emily Liman, associate professor of neurobiology at USC College and senior author of the study. Photo credit Laurie Moore.

Sparkling Drinks Spark Pain Circuits

September 29, 2010

You may not think of the fizz in soda as spicy, but your body does. The carbon dioxide in fizzy drinks triggers the same pain sensors in the nasal cavity as mustard and horseradish, though at a lower intensity, according to…

The Neuroscience Era

The Chatter of Neurons

April 23, 2009

Close your eyes. Extend your arms and let your fingertips explore your surroundings. What textures and shapes do you feel? What can you infer about your immediate environment simply through touch? Just as your hands glide…

‘Genius’ of Memory

‘Genius’ of Memory

January 1, 2006

Alumna Wins MacArthur Award It’s official. As one of the 2005 winners of the prestigious MacArthur Foundation Fellowships, USC College alumna Lu Chen (Ph.D., Neuroscience, ’98) is a “genius.” Chen, a…