Most thalamic research has focused on sensory transmission. Now three independent groups reveal the thalamus to be critical in behaviors linked to frontal cortex and the maintenance of persistent cortical activity during delays.
Disruption of retinal direction selectivity reveals both peripheral and central computations contributing to direction selectivity in mouse visual cortex. These mechanisms work together to better encode motion directions and speeds.
The checkpoint pathway consisting of programmed death ligand 1 (PD-L1) and its receptor, PD-1, modulates immune function in cancer and infection, but unexpectedly, it also silences pain signals in nerves.
A computational model explains how memories of past rewards guide value-based choices. Incorporating behavioral and functional MRI evidence, the findings indicate that 'sampling' from individual memories of past rewards influences choices.
Stephen J Eglen, Ben Marwick, Yaroslav O Halchenko, Michael Hanke, Shoaib Sufi, Padraig Gleeson, R Angus Silver, Andrew P Davison, Linda Lanyon, Mathew Abrams, Thomas Wachtler, David J Willshaw, Christophe Pouzat & Jean-Baptiste Poline
Computational techniques are central in many areas of neuroscience and are relatively easy to share. This paper describes why computer programs underlying scientific publications should be shared and lists simple steps for sharing. Together with ongoing efforts in data sharing, this should aid reproducibility of research.
Reproducibility initiatives seek to promote greater transparency and sharing of scientific reagents, procedures and data. Less recognized is the need to share data analysis routines. Nature Neuroscience is launching a pilot project to evaluate the efficacy of sharing code.
Keeping a picture in mind requires many brain cells to actively communicate ... or does it? There might be more to working memory than neuronal chatter, and silent processes could be hiding right beneath the surface.
Microglia are highly heterogeneous and plastic. However, the dynamics of their turnover have been difficult to visualize. A new multicolor reporter system reveals a plastic but stable network of microglia during health and disease.
Capillary endothelial cells sense neuronal activity-evoked increases in extracellular K+ via KIR2.1 inwardly rectifying K+ channels. The ensuing hyperpolarization travels upstream along the vascular network, reaching arterioles and evoking vasodilation.
α-Synuclein is present at high levels in all neurons and their synapses. We now learn that this protein helps dilate the fusion pore, which forms transiently during vesicle exocytosis, promoting release of certain neurotransmitters.
Technical advances in calcium imaging enable the first tests of classic theories of cerebellar learning. Two independent groups reveal dense representation of surprising modalities in cerebellar granule cells.
A study combines monkey behavioral testing with electrical stimulation of face patches, located with functional MRI and studied electrophysiologically, to probe the behavioral relevance of the face patches' selectivity.
Hippocampal place cells are traditionally thought to represent locations where animals currently are or predict where they are headed. However, new results reveal that place cells also represent distant places that are actively avoided.
The rate of development of the brain connectome distinguishes adolescents with and without psychiatric symptoms. Those with symptoms exhibit delayed development of connectome distinctiveness as compared to healthy adolescents.
Addictive substances hijack the reward system partly via synaptic plasticity onto dopamine neurons. Cadherins may contribute to cocaine-evoked adaptations, supporting the notion that drug addiction is a synaptic disease.
Thomas E Nichols, Samir Das, Simon B Eickhoff, Alan C Evans, Tristan Glatard, Michael Hanke, Nikolaus Kriegeskorte, Michael P Milham, Russell A Poldrack, Jean-Baptiste Poline, Erika Proal, Bertrand Thirion, David C Van Essen, Tonya White & B T Thomas Yeo
Responding to widespread concerns about reproducibility, the Organization for Human Brain Mapping created a working group to identify best practices in data analysis, results reporting and data sharing to promote open and reproducible research in neuroimaging. We describe the challenges of open research and the barriers the field faces.
The validity of conclusions drawn from functional MRI research has been questioned for some time now. Nature Neuroscience and Nature Communications are committed to working with neuroimaging researchers to improve the robustness and reproducibility of their work.
We present a special issue highlighting considerations and recent developments in noninvasive techniques that improve our understanding of neural measurements in humans, bridging the gap between human and animal research in neuroscience.
To learn from others' experience, one must link environmental conditions with social cues. A specific amygdala circuit underlies social learning of fear, and targeted activation normalizes behavior in a rodent model of autism.
Many people still associate brain glucose metabolism with neurons. A new report shows that stimulation of astrocytic glutamate uptake increases glucose utilization, suggesting that astrocytes play a major role in the glucose uptake signal. However, this still reflects synaptic activity.
McHenry and colleagues delineate a neural circuit controlling female sexual behavior. These experiments shed light on how the brain optimizes reproductive behavior to coincide with phases of peak fertility.
Nusinersen (Spinraza) is a recently approved drug for treating spinal muscular atrophy. Approval of nusinersen may signal new opportunities for using antisense oligonucleotides as treatments for devastating neurological diseases.