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Neurons produced during adulthood react to stimuli

t enough just to have new cells produced," said Bittman. "You need to know if the cells are actually working." Although the research was conducted on hamsters, scientists hope that this insight into how neurons are produced, and how they behave, may be a step toward new treatments for disorders such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and stroke, which are related to the premature death or dysfunctioning of neurons.

The next step, Bittman says, is to determine whether neurons produced during adulthood respond only to sexual stimuli, and if so, which are the critical cues provided by the female. Scientists are also examining whether the neurons are triggered by other stimuli, including the scent of a female, the scent of an aggressive male, and a non-social odor such as peppermint.


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Contact: Elizabeth Luciano
luciano@journ.umass.edu
413-545-2989
University of Massachusetts at Amherst
24-Oct-1999


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