Papers for the month of May 2019

Wellman SM, Li L, Yalikun Y, McNamara IA, Kozai TDY

"Revealing Spatial and Temporal Patterns of Cell Death, Glial Proliferation, and Blood-Brain Barrier Dysfunction Around Implanted Intracortical Neural Interfaces"
Frontiers in Neuroscience, 13:493

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.Improving the long-term performance of neural electrode interfaces requires overcoming severe biological reactions such as neuronal cell death, glial cell activation, and vascular damage in the presence of implanted intracortical devices. Our results reveal unique temporal and spatial patterns of neuronal and oligodendrocyte cell loss, axonal and myelin reorganization, glial cell reactivity, and pericyte deficiency both acutely and chronically around implanted devices.

Hanner, E., Braham, E. J., Elliott, L.

"Promoting math talk in adult–child interactions through grocery store signs"
Mind, Brain, and Education, 159:0

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.Young children have better math abilities when their parents engage in more math‐related conversations with them. Yet, previous studies have found that math talk occurs only very infrequently in everyday interactions. In the present study, we sought to promote adult–child conversations about math in a naturalistic context using minimal instructions. We observed 179 adult–child dyads while they shopped in grocery stores with signs prompting them to engage in math‐related conversations (math condition), signs prompting them to talk about other topics (general language condition), or without any signs (baseline condition). In the math condition, more adults talked about math compared to the general language or the baseline condition, and this finding could not be explained by demographic characteristics of the dyad or the overall amount of conversations. This study demonstrates that cost‐effective signs placed in everyday contexts can promote math‐related conversations and potentially provide math learning opportunities for children.

"The Alpha War"
REview of Philosophy and Psychology, na:na

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.Benjamin et al. Nature Human Behavior 2 (1), 6–10 (2018) proposed decreasing the significance level by an order of magnitude to improve the replicability of psychology. This modest, practical proposal has been widely criticized, and its prospects remain unclear. This article defends this proposal against these criticisms and highlights its virtues.

Badylak, S.

"A roadmap for promoting endogenous in situ tissue restoration using inductive bioscaffolds after acute brain injury."
Brain Research Bulletin, 150:136-149

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.The regeneration of brain tissue remains one of the greatest unsolved challenges in medicine and by many is considered unfeasible. Indeed, the adult mammalian brain does not regenerate tissue, but there is ongoing endogenous neurogenesis, which is upregulated after injury and contributes to tissue repair. This endogenous repair response is a conditio sine que non for tissue regeneration. However, scarring around the lesion core and cavitation provide unfavorable conditions for tissue regeneration in the brain. Based on the success of using extracellular matrix (ECM)-based bioscaffolds in peripheral soft tissue regeneration, it is plausible that the provision of an inductive ECM-based hydrogel inside the volumetric tissue loss can attract neural cells and create a de novo viable tissue. Following perturbation theory of these successes in peripheral tissues, we here propose 9 perturbation parts (i.e. requirements) that can be solved independently to create an integrated series to build a functional and integrated de novo neural tissue. Necessities for tissue formation, anatomical and functional connectivity are further discussed to provide a new substrate to support the improvement of behavioral impairments after acute brain injury. We also consider potential parallel developments of this tissue engineering effort that can support therapeutic benefits in the absence of de novo tissue formation (e.g. structural support to veterate brain tissue). It is envisaged that eventually top-down inductive "natural" bioscaffolds composed of decellularized tissues (i.e. ECM) will be replaced by bottom-up synthetic designer hydrogels that will provide very defined structural and signaling properties, potentially even opening up opportunities we currently do not envisage using natural materials.

Witherspoon, E., Vincent-Ruz, P.

"When making the grade isn’t enough: The gendered nature of premed science course attrition"
Educational Researcher, 0:0

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.Women take qualifying exams and enter medical school at substantially lower levels than predicted by their interest in medical degrees at the end of high school. We examined how science course experiences contribute to gendered attrition in premed using a multicohort data set of 8,253 undergraduates taking the traditional premed sequence of introductory science courses at a public research university between 2008 and 2016. Gendered attrition was not based in academic performance, was specific to high-performing women, and yet was grounded in competency beliefs. The result is that high-performing women often graduate with lower paying, lower status degrees. Motivational interventions in premed science courses will be critical for retaining high-performing women in premed, an important outcome with implications for equity and women’s health.

Nelson Tyler S, Fu Weisi, Donahue Renée R, Corder Gregory F, Hökfelt Tomas, Wiley Ronald G

"Facilitation of neuropathic pain by the NPY Y1 receptor-expressing subpopulation of excitatory interneurons in the dorsal horn"
Scientific Reports, 9:1-14

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.We found that Y1R-expressing spinal neurons contain multiple markers of excitatory but not inhibitory interneurons in the rat superficial dorsal horn, and Y1R-expressing excitatory dorsal horn interneurons facilitate neuropathic pain hypersensitivity.

Rice, C. A., Fraundorf, S. H., Liburd, T. L.,

"The complex interactions of context availability, polysemy, word frequency, and orthographic variables during lexical processing"
Memory & Cognition, 0:1-17

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.In this study we examined the interactions of context availability, polysemy, word frequency, and orthographic neighborhood variables during lexical processing. Context availability and polysemy interacted, in that words that were both lower in context availability and had fewer related senses were especially disadvantaged, as was originally reported by Tokowicz and Kroll (2007). Word frequency interacted with both polysemy and context availability, in that the effects of polysemy and context availability were stronger for lower-frequency words. Finally, orthographic neighborhood size and frequency both interacted with polysemy: the effect of polysemy was greater for words with smaller orthographic neighborhoods and a greater number of higher-frequency neighbors. These findings provide support for the context availability hypothesis (Schwanenflugel & Shoben, 1983). Specifically, the feedback activation account (Hino & Lupker, 1996) offers a mechanistic explanation of our findings that is rooted in feedback from semantic to orthographic representations.

Dunovan K., Vich C., Rubin, J.

"Reward-driven changes in striatal pathway competition shape evidence evaluation in decision-making"
PLoS Computational Biology, 1006998:1

Mouse over here for a brief summary or click to open article in a new tab.Using a multi-level modeling approach, we show how phasic dopamine signals at the corticostriatal synapses shapes multiple parameters of cognitive decision models.


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