aging

Looking For Loneliness In Your Brain

Some time before the COVID-19 pandemic shut down much of the world, a neuroscientist named Dr. Kay Tye was studying the impact of human loneliness on the brain — a phenomenon that would soon become all too relevant in a world of social distancing. Tye knew that the overwhelming majority of people knew [ … ]

aging

Getting Gene Therapy Toward Your Brain

All it takes is a single genetic mutation to permanently alter one’s life, or even the course of one’s life — bringing about any number of recessive linked genetic disorders that can affect the entire body. For decades, people dreaded the possibility that they could develop Huntington’s disease later in life or that they could be [ … ]

aging

Know Your Brain: How Neuroplasticity Works

There’s always been a time in our lives when we thought, if given enough time, we’d learn a new language, a new instrument, acquire a new skill. Some of us have successfully accomplished this in the wake of the pandemic, and probably a few of us are somewhere in between — realizing that the whole thing is a lot [ … ]

aging

To Remember, Your Brain Must Actively Forget

It’s a central principle of owning a human body that if you don’t use it, you lose it. Singers have to practice hitting the high notes to keep vocal range wide and vocal cords limber. Basketballers have to shoot countless hoops to hone their technique. We all have to get out of the easy chair and get a little exercise [ … ]

education

What Prison Does To Your Brain

“A door was accidentally ajar and I heard a child laugh, I hadn’t heard anything as beautiful in more than two decades, my mind was awhirl for weeks,” Ahmed Kathrada, who was jailed with Nelson Mandela for most of his 28 years, told me this after he was released (almost two years before Mandela). [ … ]

education

Racial Stigma Can Change Your Brain

The recent deaths of unarmed individuals like George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and Tony McDade have made headlines over the last few weeks, and spurned national outrage with protests throughout major U.S. cities. They’ve also led to a dialogue on systemic racism in the United States [ … ]