cognitive health

Researchers are prescribing exercise as if it were a drug in a study that aims to see if it can prevent Alzheimer's disease.

"We are testing if exercise is medicine for people with a mild memory problem," says Laura Baker, principal investigator of the nationwide EXERT study and associate director of the Alzheimer's Disease Research Center at Wake Forest School of Medicine.

Scientists are beginning to understand why Alzheimer's disease affects more women than men and why the disease seems to progress more quickly in women's brains.

The explanation appears to involve social, biological and genetic differences, researchers reported Tuesday at the Alzheimer's Association International Conference in Los Angeles.

University of Miami's Concussion Program / Courtesy

The University of Miami’s Sports Medicine Institute concussion program is testing a medical marijuana pill for high school football players. 

A little electrical brain stimulation can go a long way in boosting memory.

The key is to deliver a tiny pulse of electricity to exactly the right place at exactly the right moment, a team reports in Tuesday's Nature Communications.

"We saw a 15 percent improvement in memory," says Michael Kahana, a professor of psychology at the University of Pennsylvania and an author of the study.

Smell, the thinking goes, is not our strongest sense. Our lowly noses are eclipsed by our ability to see the world around us, hear the sound of music and feel the touch of a caress. Even animals, we're taught, have a far more acute sense of smell than we do.

But one scientist argues the idea of an inferior sense of smell stems from a 19th-century myth.

http://www.brainhealth.utdallas.edu/

01/22/13 - Tuesday's Topical Currents addresses our “cognitive potential,” with Dr. Sandra Bond Chapman, founder of the Center for Brain Health at the University of Texas at Dallas.  She says today’s “multi-tasking” culture is bad for the brain . . . and that working crosswords or Sudoku really can’t make us sharper.