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  • Cortical–subcortical fusion organoids replicate complex features of human brain activity and are used to explore altered network function in Rett syndrome.

    • Katherine Whalley
    Research Highlight
  • The 'new head' hypothesis proposes that the advent of the neural crest and cranial placodes was crucial for the evolution of vertebrates. In this Review, Martik and Bronner discuss this hypothesis and how emerging data about gene regulatory networks in neural crest-like cell types in invertebrate chordates are providing insights into neural crest evolution.

    • Megan L. Martik
    • Marianne E. Bronner
    Review Article
  • A new study reports gene coexpression networks from across 12 major human brain regions and insights obtained from them into the biology and disorders of the brain.

    • Darran Yates
    Research Highlight
  • Entorhinal cortical grid cells have been suggested to encode an internal map of the environment during spatial navigation. In this Perspective, Rueckemann, Sosa and colleagues propose that grid cells and hippocampal place cells cooperate to provide a topological representation of experience through temporal ordering of events, in both spatial and non-spatial contexts.

    • Jon W. Rueckemann
    • Marielena Sosa
    • Elizabeth A. Buffalo
  • Homeobox genes were initially characterized on the basis of the homeotic transformations in segmental identity during development that resulted from mutation of the Hox cluster family of homeobox genes. In this Perspective article, Hobert proposes that homeobox genes specify neuronal identity in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans and possibly in other animals too.

    • Oliver Hobert
  • When designing neurotechnologies to assist people with communication disabilities, neuroscientists and engineers must consider both the speaker’s perspective and the listeners’ ability to judge the voluntariness and accuracy of decoded communication. This is particularly important in personally significant communication contexts for which there are profound legal and societal implications.

    • Jennifer A. Chandler
    • Kiah I. Van der Loos
    • Judy Illes
  • After establishing a novel operant conditioning paradigm that enables mice to report their interoceptive hunger state (fasted or sated), the authors investigated the hypothalamic neural circuitry that underpins these internal states using optogenetics and chemogenetics.

    • Jake Rogers
    Research Highlight
  • Reactivation of CaMKII–CREB signalling in retinal ganglion cells following injury is neuroprotective and restored functional vision following excitotoxic damage.

    • Sian Lewis
    Research Highlight
  • Human pluripotent stem cell-derived in vitro models have potential as tools to study aspects of human brain development. Here, Heilshorn and colleagues review biomaterial-based approaches that may be integrated into these models in an effort to develop them further and better recapitulate neurodevelopmental processes.

    • Julien G. Roth
    • Michelle S. Huang
    • Sarah C. Heilshorn
    Review Article
  • How category-specific regions of cortex, or ‘domains’, in the primate ventral stream arise is unclear. In this Perspective, Arcaro and Livingstone present a ‘bottom-up’ model for the generation of these domains, whereby experience refines a domain-general architecture based on topographic maps of the sensory environment.

    • Michael J. Arcaro
    • Margaret S. Livingstone