Latest Reviews

  • Review |

    The brain comprises complex structural and functional networks, but much remains to be determined regarding how these networks support the communication processes that underlie neuronal computation. In this Review, Avena-Koenigsberger, Misic and Sporns discuss the network basis of communication dynamics in the brain.

    • Andrea Avena-Koenigsberger
    • , Bratislav Misic
    •  & Olaf Sporns
  • Review |

    The brain uses predictable temporal structure to anticipate and select relevant events in time. Nobre and van Ede introduce different types of this 'temporal expectation' and its neural underpinnings, and describe how temporal expectation interacts with other forms of expectation in guiding adaptive behaviour.

    • Anna C. Nobre
    •  & Freek van Ede
  • Progress |

    Activity-driven changes in gene transcription regulate synaptic development and function. Bading and colleagues describe recent evidence of lineage-specific changes in the gene regulatory regions that govern excitation–transcription coupling and consider how such changes may have contributed to the evolution of human cognitive abilities.

    • Giles E. Hardingham
    • , Priit Pruunsild
    • , Michael E. Greenberg
    •  & Hilmar Bading
  • Review |

    Promoting remyelination may be an effective therapeutic strategy for various disorders that are characterized by a loss of myelin, including multiple sclerosis. In this Review, Franklin and ffrench-Constant discuss recent developments in our understanding of remyelination and the efforts that are underway to enhance this process.

    • Robin J. M. Franklin
    •  & Charles ffrench-Constant
  • Review |

    The dopamine motive system, which integrates reinforcement and motivation, is influenced by obesogenic foods and addictive drugs. In this Review, Volkow and colleagues highlight how these stimuli sensitize the subject's motivation towards them while desensitizing the subject's motivation towards alternative reinforcers.

    • Nora D. Volkow
    • , Roy A. Wise
    •  & Ruben Baler
  • Opinion |

    Chemical communication between axons and their myelin sheath is an emerging concept in neurobiology. In this review, Stys and colleagues discuss how this 'axo-myelinic synapse' may play a role in metabolic control of the myelinating unit, modulate myelin dynamics and be a future therapeutic target.

    • I. Micu
    • , J. R. Plemel
    • , A. V. Caprariello
    • , K.-A. Nave
    •  & P. K. Stys
  • Review |

    An axon's function is dictated by its morphology and, thus, by the properties and organization of the axonal cytoskeleton. Leterrier et al. describe how advances in super-resolution and live-cell imaging are transforming our understanding of the molecular architecture of the axonal shaft.

    • Christophe Leterrier
    • , Pankaj Dubey
    •  & Subhojit Roy
  • Review |

    A causal explanation for the pathogenesis of schizophrenia is lacking. In this Review, Birnbaum and Weinberger explore recent genetic studies of schizophrenia and discuss how genetic and epigenetic risk of the disorder may converge to perturb key neurodevelopmental trajectories.

    • Rebecca Birnbaum
    •  & Daniel R. Weinberger
  • Opinion |

    Volitional motor control involves not only the initiation of desired movements but also the suppression of undesired movements. In this Opinion article, Ebbesen and Brecht argue that motor cortex neurons have a role in both aspects of motor control.

    • Christian Laut Ebbesen
    •  & Michael Brecht
  • Review |

    Only primates possess 'cytoarchitectonic area 10' in anterior prefrontal cortex, and its function is unknown. In this Review, Mansouri and colleagues argue that area 10 monitors the relative importance of current and alternative goals.

    • Farshad Alizadeh Mansouri
    • , Etienne Koechlin
    • , Marcello G. P. Rosa
    •  & Mark J. Buckley
  • Opinion |

    Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is emerging as a potential broad-spectrum therapy for addiction. In this Opinion article, Diana and colleagues discuss the neural foundations of TMS and discuss possible mechanisms underlying the beneficial effects observed in people with addictions.

    • Marco Diana
    • , Tommi Raij
    • , Miriam Melis
    • , Aapo Nummenmaa
    • , Lorenzo Leggio
    •  & Antonello Bonci
  • Review |

    Individuals with autism show differences in both social cognition and basic sensory processing. In this Review, Robertson and Baron-Cohen discuss human and animal studies of sensory processing in autism and present possible explanations of how they relate to changes in neural processing and cognition.

    • Caroline E. Robertson
    •  & Simon Baron-Cohen
  • Review |

    During late-stage development, supernumerary synapses are eliminated in a process known as synaptic pruning. Here, Neniskyte and Gross give an overview of synaptic pruning in various parts of the nervous system and describe how differences in synaptic pruning may be associated with neurodevelopmental disorders.

    • Urte Neniskyte
    •  & Cornelius T. Gross
  • Review |

    Neuroscience is going nanoscopic, but can it still rely on classical electrophysiology? In this Review, Savtchenko, Poo and Rusakov argue that accurate interpretation of physiological observations on the nanoscale must account for electrodiffusion phenomena arising from local perturbations of ionic concentrations.

    • Leonid P. Savtchenko
    • , Mu Ming Poo
    •  & Dmitri A. Rusakov
  • Review |

    By capturing and manipulating the self-organizing capacity of pluripotent stem cells, researchers have established protocols for the production of in vitro brain-like 'organoids'. Di Lullo and Kriegstein evaluate approaches to organoid generation and consider their potential as models of brain development and disease.

    • Elizabeth Di Lullo
    •  & Arnold R. Kriegstein
  • Review |

    Neuronal trafficking has to meet the requirements of various intracellular compartments. In this Review, Nirschl, Ghiretti and Holzbaur examine how the transport machinery, including the cytoskeleton and molecular motors, is locally regulated to allow neuronal compartment-specific transport.

    • Jeffrey J. Nirschl
    • , Amy E. Ghiretti
    •  & Erika L. F. Holzbaur
  • Review |

    Non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) have been implicated in the pathophysiology of various neurodegenerative diseases. In this Review, Salta and De Strooper discuss the mechanisms by which ncRNAs may be linked to neurodegeneration and touch on the use of ncRNA-based biomarkers and therapies for these conditions.

    • Evgenia Salta
    •  & Bart De Strooper
  • Review |

    Several of the spinocerebellar ataxias (SCAs) result from expansion of polyglutamine (polyQ)-encoding regions in different genes. Here, Orr and colleagues examine the clinical features of the the polyQ SCAs, and suggest that understanding the molecular and physiological mechanisms underlying polyQ SCAs can inform therapeutic strategies for these and other polyQ disorders.

    • Henry L. Paulson
    • , Vikram G. Shakkottai
    • , H. Brent Clark
    •  & Harry T. Orr
  • Review |

    The aggregation of α-synuclein in neurons is characteristic of Parkinson disease. Koprich, Kalia and Brotchie provide a critical overview of preclinical, mammalian models of α-synucleinopathy and their merits and limitations in drug development for Parkinson disease, and suggest a combination of different models for optimal proof-of-principle investigation of novel therapeutics.

    • James B. Koprich
    • , Lorraine V. Kalia
    •  & Jonathan M. Brotchie
  • Opinion |

    The idea that specialized cognitive processes or brain regions are devoted to particular cognitive functions — known as domain specificity — remains an area of substantial debate. Adolphs and Spunt outline the challenges in defining and assessing domain specificity and use social neuroscience findings to suggest a new approach.

    • Robert P. Spunt
    •  & Ralph Adolphs