HOME >> MEDICINE >> NEWS
Scientists learn how the brain 'boots up' to process information from the senses

Winston-Salem, N.C. -- The same chemical in the body that is targeted by the drug Viagra also helps our brains "boot up" in the morning so we can process sights, sound, touch and other sensory information. The discovery could lead to a better understanding of major brain disorders, according to researchers from Wake Forest University School of Medicine.

"We've learned new information about how our brains process sensory information, which may help increase our understanding of what goes awry in conditions such as schizophrenia, attention deficit disorder and epilepsy," said Dwayne Godwin, Ph.D., associate professor of neurobiology and anatomy and senior author of the study, reported on-line this week in the journal Neuroscience.

Through studying ferrets, the researchers set out to understand the role of nitric oxide, a small gaseous molecule with big roles in health. The drug Viagra acts by slowing down the breakdown of nitric oxide in the penis, leading to increased blood flow. The heart drug nitroglycerin is converted to nitric oxide by the body and widens blood vessels, easing the pain of angina.

In the brain, small puffs of the gas are naturally released during the day by the brainstem, where it affects another region called the thalamus, but scientists knew little about its role.

Nitric oxide is released during awareness, or aroused states of the brain. In the animal studies, Godwin and colleagues found something surprising about how it enhances the flow of sensory information from the eyes to the brain to process vision.

"Just as a computer must boot up its operating system before running involved applications like spreadsheets, nitric oxide released as the brain wakes up may set the stage for more complex brain operations by enhancing information at the earliest processing steps," said Godwin.

Sensory information from the eyes, skin or ears goes first to the thalamus, which acts like a gateway
'"/>

Contact: Karen Richardson
krchrdsn@wfubmc.edu
336-716-4453
Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center
8-Aug-2006


Page: 1 2 3

Related medicine news :

1. Scientists train nano-building blocks to take on new shapes, as reported in Science
2. Scientists find war vets hand dexterity determines susceptibility to PTSD
3. Scientists develop method to track immune system enzyme in live animals
4. Scientists from the CIMA investigate a molecule for diagnosing hypertensive cardiopathy
5. Scientists equip bacteria with custom chemo-navigational system
6. Scientists find missing link to understand how plants make vitamin C
7. Scientists and polar explorers brave the elements in support of CryoSat-2
8. Scientists identify cells responsible for relapse after treatment in common childhood cancer
9. Scientists progress in successful tissue engineering
10. Scientists re-grow dental enamel from cultured cells
11. Scientists create dual-modality microbeads to improve identification of disease biomarkers

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:5/21/2020)... ... May 21, 2020 , ... In response ... be lifted on May 28th and all businesses will be required to have ... back to work. , As an essential business, AmeriCare Medical began this precautionary ...
(Date:5/21/2020)... (PRWEB) , ... May 21, 2020 , ... A ... Medicine Group, details over 90 companies involved in the point of care test ... hospital facilities for preliminary testing, COVID-19 has made point-of-care more important than in the ...
(Date:5/16/2020)... ... , ... On May 21, T1V will host a webinar featuring Dr. David B. Agus, one ... to CBS news, as we address COVID-19 and the impact on unified communication and collaboration. ... since March, many questions are left unanswered as we look at the future of UCC ...
(Date:5/15/2020)... ... May 15, 2020 , ... Collagen has taken the areas ... channel alone in 2019, according to a 2020 Nutritional Outlook ‘Ingredients to Watch’ US ... and further away from the high molecular weight, low-impact products of the past to ...
(Date:5/15/2020)... , ... May 15, 2020 , ... ... placed the final beam atop the hospital’s new six-story, 300,000 square foot patient ... Bruce B. Downs Boulevard. The topping off celebrates the structural completion of the ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/25/2020)... ... May 24, 2020 , ... May is National ... want the public to know what safety resources are available. Every year during ... launches an education campaign to inform the public about safety steps that can ...
(Date:5/21/2020)... ... ... In today’s news cycle we often hear things that only lead to ... to avoid restaurants, movie theaters, concerts, sporting events or schools; or to lock yourself ... Video subscriptions. But as things begin to return to normal Americans will still feel ...
(Date:5/21/2020)... ... May 21, 2020 , ... MedTech Breakthrough , ... in the global health and medical technology market, today announced that Hospital ... as the winner of its “Health Administration Innovation Award” in the fourth annual ...
Breaking Medicine Technology:
Cached News: