Papers for the month of September 2018


Rossi, A., Parada, F., Stewart, R., Flynn, C., Demas, G. E., Allen, C.

"Hormonal correlates of exploratory and play-related behavior in domestic dogs"
Frontiers in Psychology, 9:1559

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.The functional role of the “social hormone” oxytocin in exploration, play, stress, and anxiety is still unknown. The present work addresses this literature gap by studying plasma hormone profiles for cortisol (CORT) and oxytocin (OT) of domestic dogs exposed to a novel arena containing two unfamiliar trainers who did not interact with the dogs. We provide evidence suggesting a functional relationship between hormonal measures of cortisol and oxytocin and adaptive behavior (play-soliciting and exploration) in freely behaving domestic dogs.


Nemrodov D., Niemeier M., Drobotenko N., Nestor A.

"Multimodal evidence on shape and surface information in individual face processing."
Neuroimage, pii: S1053-8119(18)31959-1. :31959

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.http://The significance of shape and surface information for face perception is well established, yet their relative contribution to recognition and their neural underpinnings await clarification. We employed image reconstruction to retrieve, assess and visualize such information using behavioral, electroencephalography and functional magnetic resonance imaging data and show that both shape and surface information can be successfully recovered from each modality.


Prentiss*, E.K., Schneider*, C.L., Williams, Z.R., Sahin, B. and Mahon, B.Z. *Co-First Authors

"(2018). Spontaneous in-flight accommodation of hand orientation to unseen grasp targets: A case of action blindsight"
Cognitive Neuropsychology, 35:343-351

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.A patient with cortical blindness caused by stroke was shown to be able to make accurate ballistic grasping actions to targets in his hemianopic visual field.


Baikadi, A., Demmans Epp, C.

"Participating by Activity or by Week in MOOCs"
Information and Learning Science, 0:0

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.The purpose of this study was to provide a new characterization of the extent to which learners complete learning activities in massive open online courses (MOOCs), a central challenge in these contexts. The authors apply confirmatory and exploratory factor analysis to learner activities within three MOOCs to test different models of participation across courses and populations found within those courses.


Luna B

"Adolescence as a neurobiological critical period for the development of higher-order cognition"
Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, 94:179-195

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.The transition from adolescence to adulthood is characterized by improvements in higher-order cognitive abilities and corresponding refinements of the structure and function of the brain regions that support them. Whereas the neurobiological mechanisms that govern early development of sensory systems are well-understood, the mechanisms that drive developmental plasticity of association cortices, such as prefrontal cortex (PFC), during adolescence remain to be explained. In this review, we synthesize neurodevelopmental findings at the cellular, circuit, and systems levels in PFC and evaluate them through the lens of established critical period (CP) mechanisms that guide early sensory development. We find remarkable correspondence between these neurodevelopmental processes and the mechanisms driving CP plasticity, supporting the hypothesis that adolescent development is driven by CP mechanisms that guide the rapid development of neurobiology and cognitive ability during adolescence and their subsequent stability in adulthood. Critically, understanding adolescence as a CP not only provides a mechanism for normative adolescent development, it provides a framework for understanding the role of experience and neurobiology in the emergence of psychopathology that occurs during this developmental period.


Ghuman H, Mauney C, Donnelly J, Massensini AR, Badylak SF

"Biodegradation of ECM hydrogel promotes endogenous brain tissue restoration in a rat model of stroke."
Acta Biomaterialia, 2018:2018

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.Extracellular matrix hydrogel promotes tissue regeneration in many peripheral soft tissues. However, the brain has generally been considered to lack the potential for tissue regeneration. We here demonstrate that tissue regeneration in the brain can be achieved using implantation of ECM hydrogel into a tissue cavity. A structure-function relationship is key to promote tissue regeneration in the brain. Specifically, weaker hydrogels that were retained in the cavity underwent an efficient biodegradation within 14 days post-implantation to promote a tissue restoration within the lesion cavity. In contrast, stiffer ECM hydrogel only underwent minor biodegradation and did not lead to a tissue restoration. Inductive hydrogels weaker than brain tissue provide the appropriate condition to promote an endogenous regenerative response that restores tissue in a cavity. This approach offers new avenues for the future treatment of chronic tissue damage caused by stroke and other acute brain injuries.


Beekhuizen, B., Dubrovsky, V., Stevenson, S., & Armstrong, B. C.

"A comparison of homonym meaning frequency estimates derived from movie and television subtitles, free association, and explicit ratings"
Behavior Research Methods, 1:1-27

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.This paper describes a new method of estimating homonym meaning frequency and presents two new sets of labeled homonyms norms.


Fukuda M., Kim S.G.

"Inhibitory Neuron Activity Contributions to Hemodynamic Responses and Metabolic Load Examined Using an Inhibitory Optogenetic Mouse Model"
Cerebral Cortex, AOP:AOP

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.This work examined the contribution of inhibitory neuron activity on hemodynamic responses. We observed comparable increases in neuronal activity evoked by forelimb and optogenetic stimulation; however, significantly larger hemodynamic increases were produced by optogenetic stimulation of inhibitory neurons compared with sensory forelimb stimulation. Optogenetically-evoked hemodynamic changes were suppressed by 75-80% with the administration of a nitric oxide synthase inhibitor, suggesting that inhibitory neurons regulate blood flow mostly via nitric oxide.

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