Category Archives: Neurodegenerative disorders

October 22

The 2020 Time Vortex and other Tales of Perception

As we approach the end of 2020, I feel time warp as I think back to the early Spring… When I was quarantined in my home, the days seemed to rush past, but I still felt stuck in a huge temporal abyss.  Looking back at that time, I don’t sense the normal pattern of memories […]

October 08

It’s about time

About a day To you, Earth probably seems like a fairly stagnant entity. Sure, we are currently dealing with rising global temperatures as well as carbon dioxide (CO2) levels, but in your day to day world, those changes probably seem quite small. Over the history of life on Earth, however, so many things that we […]

April 16

Get Your Head Out of the Game

“Dr. Pellman is not a neurosurgeon, he’s not a neuro-anything. He’s a rheumatologist.”  -League of Denial, 2013 When faced with the task of investigating concussions in football, the National Football League (NFL) did not choose a neurologist to head the committee; they did not choose a neurosurgeon: they chose a rheumatologist. The documentary “League of […]

February 06

What’s my (brain) age again?

What does it mean to age? Is it a purely time-based process, with each passing moment bringing our bodies along an invariant trajectory of decline? Or is it a function of our behavior, dependent on our daily activities and the damage inflicted upon ourselves over time? Clearly, there is a bit of truth in each […]

June 20

Exosomes: Helping you stay in touch with your trillions of closest friends.

[En español] There are roughly 37.2 trillion cells in the human body. That’s nearly 5 thousand times the total number of people on the entire planet, and all these cells must somehow work together to make you “You.” Each cell has a set role to play in keeping you healthy and functioning, but how do […]

June 06

Speech Synthesis from Brain Activity

[En español] The existing technology that assists people with speech disabilities is reliant on brain-computer interfaces which translate eye and facial muscle movements into words. However, this translation is limited in speed – approximately 10 words per minute, which is considerably lower than the rate of naturally produced speech (150 words per minute). The process […]

January 24

How is a woodpecker like a football player?

As the National Football League (NFL) approaches its most prestigious game of the year, the Superbowl, fans are often treated to video montages of the big plays and hard hits that either led their teams to victory or contributed to the end of their season. While these clips serve to instill a sense of excitement […]

December 27

The Trouble with Drug Development

Open a new tab, load up a science media site you know. What do you first see across the front page? You will almost certainly find a headline blaring “NEW FINDINGS SHOW AUTISM’S DAYS ARE NUMBERED” or “UNIVERSITY RESEARCHER CURES PARKINSON’S DISEASE”. Open the page up next week, and you will almost certainly see some […]

December 13

Astrocytes, the Underrated Stars

[En español] You usually hear the term “brain cell” referring to neurons, like they’re the only cell type present in the brain. But that’s far from the case. Neurons can be considered the main cellular unit in our nervous system, as they are the cells that transfer the information by means of electrical and chemical signals. […]

November 15

From symptoms to biology: shifting definitions of Alzheimer’s disease

As a neuroscientist studying Alzheimer’s, I’m reminded of its far-reaching impact each time a barista, cashier, or Lyft driver makes small talk by asking what I do for a living. Unfortunately, this devastating disease needs no introduction. Considering its ubiquity, it’s surprising that a debate broke out recently among leaders in the field over the […]