The COVID-19 pandemic has expanded our need for virtual meeting platforms and pushed conference organisers to innovate to ensure that scientific networking continues to flourish in these troubled times. The Monsoon Brain Meeting 2020, held in June 2020, aimed to embrace the virtual format and use it to facilitate discussions on and around neuroscience, as reported here by Annapoorna, one of the attendees of the meeting.
In a recent study, researchers at the National Centre for Cell Science (NCCS), Pune have used Cryo-Electronic microscopy to figure out the structure of an "orphan" receptor expressed in the central nervous system. The study provides important insights into the mechanisms via which this receptor functions, and sets a precedent for using Cryo-EM as a powerful tool for molecular investigation.
Complex neurodegenerative disorders present a challenge to researchers who attempt to study them using model systems in the lab. Precisely measuring the behavioural defects which are hallmarks of such diseases in model organisms like the fruitfly can be difficult. Now, a team of researchers have come up with a new assay which can help assess movement-related impairments in fly models of Parkinson's disease.
A new study by researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur has identified a small molecule drug which shows therapeutic promise against Huntington's disease, a fatal neurodegenerative disorder. The molecule prevents the formation of protein clumps or aggregates which are detrimental for the health of neurons.
A sustained collaborative effort from three very different laboratories, including a father-daughter scientific duo, has resulted in the observation that the neurotransmitter serotonin regulates energy levels in neurons with the help of Sirt1, a protein known for its role in ageing and lifespan regulation.
Depression leaves its mark not only in our ability to experience positive emotions, but also in our capacity to learn and form stable memories. A new study by researchers at the National Center for Biological Sciences (NCBS), Bangalore, sheds light on the differences between how unipolar and bipolar depression can affect a person's capacity to update old memories with new information.
Zebrafish have the remarkable ability to regenerate their retinas upon damage, which makes them ideal candidates to study possible ways to restore vision following retinal injury. A new study by researchers at the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER), Mohali, has found a new mechanism via which epigenetic factors regulate retinal regeneration in zebrafish.