science
Can a Pill Make You More Moral?

It’s a reasonable goal to want everyone on Earth to be more moral. Maybe there’d be less suffering, and people would be happier or more prosperous. But what is morality? Are there any drugs that can make us more moral humans? Are they ready for us to debate about their use? Read More >>

medicine
This Brain Scanning Technique Can Measure Your Baby’s Pain

Babies can’t tell us how much pain they’re in, which poses a problem for healthcare practitioners who are trying to manage their care. A new technique that uses non-invasive brain scans overcomes this frustrating limitation by providing what may be the first objective measure of infant pain. Read More >>

science
Barking Mad Head Transplant Doctor Claims He’ll Revive Frozen Brains in Three Years

An Italian neuroscientist who says he’s planning to perform the world’s first head transplant later this year has told a German magazine that he intends to thaw a cryogenically preserved brain and transplant it in a donor body within three years. It’s a preposterous claim given the current limitations of medical science, and a complete misreading of how the fledgling cryonics industry works. It’s also a significant credibility fail for a doctor who’s already struggling to be taken seriously. Read More >>

neuroscience
The Brains of Blind People Really Are Wired to Enhance Other Senses

It’s often said that the loss of one sense improves the others. New research shows the dramatic extent to which this is true in blind people, and how their brains make new connections to boost hearing, smell, touch — and even cognitive functions such as memory and language. Read More >>

animal intelligence
Monkeys Learn to Pass a Classic Test For Self-Awareness

The ability to look into a mirror and recognise oneself is a cognitive skill we all take for granted, but very few animals outside of humans are able to do it. New research shows that monkeys can be trained to pass the so-called “mirror test”, suggesting that more species may be self-aware than previously thought. It’s a fascinating result, but one that shows how far we are from being able to accurate gauge consciousness in another animal. Read More >>

science
Reminder: Blue Monday Isn’t Real

Today is so-called 'Blue Monday,' allegedly the most miserable day of the year. Sure, it's cold, we're all poor from Christmas and a literal cartoon supervillain is being sworn into power later this week, but we don't need made-up reasons to be grumpy alongside the real ones. Read More >>

mind control
Scientists Create Mind-Controlled Hunting Zombie Mice

Flash one light, and the mouse goes on the prowl, zombielike, stalking any prey in its path. Flash another, and it delivers a killing blow with its teeth. The mouse doesn’t hunt out of hunger — scientists are in control. Read More >>

science
Brain Implant Allows Paralysed Woman to Communicate With Her Mind

Researchers in the Netherlands have successfully tested a brain implant that allows a patient with late-stage ALS to spell messages at the rate of two letters per minute. Read More >>

science
Brain Implant Allows Paralysed Monkey to Walk Again

For the first time ever, a neural device has been used to restore locomotion in paralysed primates. It may be years before clinical trials can begin for humans, but this latest breakthrough marks an important step in that direction. Read More >>

science
Controversial ‘Head Transplant’ Doctor Claims Success in Animal Experiments

An Italian neuroscientist who wants to perform the world’s first human head transplant next year is claiming to have conducted radical spinal cord experiments on mice, rats, and a dog. Experts say the results are vague and incomplete, and that talk of human head transplants are grossly premature. Read More >>

science
Monkeys Text at 12 Words a Minute Using Their Thoughts Alone

Using a brain implant, Stanford researchers have developed a mind-machine interface that allows monkeys to text at the very reasonable rate of 12 words per minute. Eventually, the system could be used to help people with movement disorders to communicate more efficiently. Read More >>

science
Neuroscientists Identify Schadenfreude Neurons

Secretly gloating over the misfortunes of others (a.k.a. schadenfreude) might not be the most noble of human traits, but it’s certainly universal—so much so, that it was memorably immortalised in the hit musical Avenue Q. Neuroscientists may have just identified the brain cells associated with that feeling. Read More >>

science
LSD Can Mess With the Language Centers in Your Brain

The stereotype of late 1960s authors and musicians is that certain drugs can help to expand the mind and make the user more creative. As someone who has never taken psychedelics, I can’t know this for sure, but a recent study seems to be the first step in displaying scientific evidence in support of that claim. Read More >>

science
Roxscan: What an MRI of Sting’s Brain Teaches Us About Music

The puns, they almost write themselves. A cognitive psychologist at McGill University has scanned the brain of Grammy-winning musician Sting to glean insight into how creative people find connections between seemingly very different thoughts or sounds. The results were just published in Neurocase. Read More >>