A completely artificial immune system quickly pumps out much-needed antibodies

Antibodies (Y-shaped) respond to a SARS-CoV-2 infection. Image: Kateryna Kon/Science Photo Library/Getty Images

In the early stages of the Covid-19 outbreak, Maker communities around the globe fired up their 3D printers to come to the aid of overburdened hospitals and first responders. Individuals and groups of amateurs and experts alike created 3D-printed face shields, masks, and ventilators. …


Neural firing and wiring in our most stubborn behaviours

If you’ve ever had a pet, you’ve probably seen how eager they are around mealtime or even when they hear the sound of a can opener. …


On the malleable nature of memory.

For a long time, I held a very vivid memory in my mind of petting a dolphin at the San Francisco zoo when I was ten years old. Each time I brought this scene to mind, it seemed as though the memory became clearer and more vivid.

I remember wearing…


Who We Are When We’re Uncertain

When I die I don’t want it to fall on anyone to rummage through all of my things and decide what to do with them. …


The circadian cycles of sickness and health

Each year, many of us welcome small pleasures of autumn, like watching the leaves proceed through a spectrum of fiery jewel tones before raking them into big crunchy piles, bundling ourselves up in cosy sweaters as temperatures drop, and stealing an extra hour of sleep as millions of Americans turn…


Understanding the neuroscience of addiction and drug tolerance

Years ago, while I was studying for the GRE, the major admissions exam required by many PhD programs, a friend was also studying for her MCAT. As exams go, the GRE is unpleasant but not unendurable. Typically, you plan to spend 4 uninterrupted hours in a room with a few…


When I stopped struggling against my mental illness

Photo by Noah Buscher on Unsplash

I pulled the bed sheet back down over my nose and hit the light switch on the floor beside me as soon as I was sure my mother had found her way to her bed. I must have made some pained sub-verbal noise as I rolled over. Maybe it was…


Face blindness, communication, and neurodiversity in digital social life

“It’s so nice to see your face” is a phrase I’ve heard more in the past three weeks than I have over the sum of the last several years. When our lab shut down, we were, along with millions of others, plunged into a panicked state of suspended animation. …


Empathy and Pain in the Evolution of our Social Brains

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

My first mouse of the day was called “LG1202”. Had I met this mouse in a different time, maybe found him in a pet store or in my back yard, this wouldn’t have been the name I’d chosen for him…


How dopamine helps you pick your battles

If you want a mouse to learn something quickly, give it a strawberry milkshake.

Behavioural neuroscientists know that mice have a powerful sweet tooth, so it’s common in this kind of research to use saccharin or glucose as a reward. But mice crave strawberry milkshakes so strongly that they’ll work…

Lindsay Gray

Neuroscientist & cellist. Explorer of the weird wonders of the human brain.

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