News

Increased blood flow during sleep tied to critical brain function

Our brains experience significant changes in blood flow and neural activity during sleep, according to Penn State researchers. Such changes may help to clean out metabolic brain waste that builds up during the day.

Researchers will evaluate the results of two self-administered, scratch-and-sniff smell tests for COVID-19. The first involves asking users to identify odors such as smoke, strawberry, chocolate and onions, while the second is designed to reveal a participant’s sensitivity to different concentrations of the same odor

Researchers investigate an at-home 'scratch-and-sniff' test for COVID-19

A self-administered "scratch-and-sniff" test for COVID-19 may be around the corner, according to researchers at Penn State, the University of Florida, and Arizona State University.

Some neurons target tiny cerebral blood vessel dilation

Neurons control blood flow in tiny vessels in the brain, but researchers know little about this relationship. Now a team of Penn State engineers has found a connection between nitric oxide expressing neurons and changes in arterial diameters in mice, which may shed light on brain function and aging.

The Collaborative Informatics and Neuroimaging Suite Toolkit for Anonymous Computation (COINSTAC) platform is a peer to peer system that operates to make data available for analysis, while protecting anonymity and privacy. COINSTAC makes possible virtual sharing and analyses with identified collaborators in the absence of moving any data. Collaboration and data sharing are done through forming temporary virtual clusters of studies performing automatically generated local computation on their respective data and aggregating statistics. (IMAGE: Courtesy of Frank Hillary)

Psychology professor receives grant to 'harmonize' brain injury data

A provisional grant from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), part of the National Institutes of Health, will help Penn State professor of psychology, Frank Hillary, and 37 co-investigators from all over the world promote brain injury data sharing worldwide in the hopes of advancing science and improving patient outcomes.

Making Connections: Psychologist explores the neuroscience of creativity

Is there anything more mysterious — or human — than the creative impulse? Whatever the field of endeavor: music, art, science, business… What accounts for the inspired burst of innovation? The spark that flits to flame and lights the way to something entirely new?

Smell and taste changes provide early indication of COVID-19 community spread

Self-reports of smell and taste changes provide earlier markers of the spread of infection of SARS-CoV-2 than current governmental indicators, according to an international team of researchers. The researchers also observed a decline in self-reports of smell and taste changes as early as five days after lockdown enforcement, with faster declines reported in countries that adopted the most stringent lockdown measures.

Researchers deconstruct the 'biological clock' that regulates birdsong

The precise timing of a bird's complex song is driven in part by the often-ignored “wires” connecting neurons in the bird's brain, according to a new study. A team of researchers from Penn State and NYU Langone Health has deconstructed an important “biological clock” that regulates birdsong and other behaviors, leading to new ways of thinking about the function of neuronal networks.

Bacteria virus combo may be cause of neonatal brain infections in Uganda

A newly identified bacteria and a common virus may be the underlying cause of infection-induced hydrocephalus in Uganda, according to an international team of researchers.

Huck Institutes Seeks Director of Graduate Training Initiatives

The Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences is searching for a Penn State faculty member interested in overseeing a number of training programs for master's and doctoral students.

Researchers to examine relation of dysfunctional brain hubs to mental disorders

The National Institutes of Health has awarded Penn State researchers a $1.85 million grant to develop a new way to test if dysfunctions in certain areas of the brain lead to mental health complications and brain disorders. If successful, the research could lead to better mental health treatments.