Nimble Neurons

Volume 30 Issue 11 | November 2016

Featured Articles

image: 2016 Life Sciences Salary Survey

2016 Life Sciences Salary Survey

By | November 1, 2016

Most researchers feel stimulated by their work but are dissatisfied with their compensation, according to this year’s results.

image: Viruses of the Human Body

Viruses of the Human Body

By | November 1, 2016

Some of our resident viruses may be beneficial.

image: Immune System Maintains Brain Health

Immune System Maintains Brain Health

By | November 1, 2016

Once thought only to attack neurons, immune cells turn out to be vital for central nervous system function.




Meet some of the people featured in the November 2016 issue of The Scientist.


Nosing Around

Covering neuroscience research means choosing from an embarrassment of riches.

Speaking of Science

Notable Science Quotes

Nobel's diversity problem, Brexit and science, letters of recommendation skew sexist, and NIH's public perception troubles


Seals Help Oceanographers Explore Underwater

Data collected by elephant seals in Antarctic waters provide a closer look at the processes driving ocean circulation.

Regularly Whiffing Essential Oils Can Retrain Lost Sense of Smell

The simple therapy likely exploits the neural plasticity of the olfactory system.

Neuron Populations Involved in Mouse Olfaction Change Over Time

Male mice exposed to females, their urine, or a chemical in their urine lost sensory neurons in their vomeronasal organs that respond to that chemical.

Neurometabolic Disorders Could Contribute to Depression

Impairments in the production of neurotransmitters may lead to depression in some patients, preliminary results show, opening new avenues for research.

Online First

Opinion: Toot Your Horn

Why (and how) scientists should advocate for their research with journalists and policymakers

Critic at Large

Opinion: Aging, Just Another Disease

No longer considered an inevitability, growing older should be and is being treated like a chronic condition. 

Modus Operandi

Neural Connectome Method Uses mRNA Barcodes

Researchers swap microscopy for RNA sequencing to track neural paths in the mouse brain.  

The Literature

Neural Network Found That Helps Control Breathing

The results suggest that breathing is orchestrated by three—rather than two—excitatory circuits in the medulla.

Antarctic Bacteria Latch Onto Ice with Molecular Fishing Rod

Researchers describe the first known bacterial adhesion molecule that binds to frozen water. 

Neuron Signaling Persists, Faintly, Even When Key Presynaptic Proteins Are Absent

Results from experiments in mice revise a long-held hypothesis that certain protein scaffolds are needed for synaptic activity.


Time, Flies

By studying the sleep-wake cycle of fruit flies, Amita Sehgal is revealing how the body’s circadian and sleep rhythms are regulated.

Scientist to Watch

Jason Castro Tackles Olfactory Mysteries

Assistant Professor, Bates College. Age: 37

Lab Tools

Assessing the Behavior of Lab Animals

Advances in cage design and monitoring software allow the collection of more realistic data.

Live Imaging Using Light-Sheet Microscopy

How to make the most of this rapidly developing technique and a look at what's on the horizon


Social Media Accelerates Science

How researchers are taking advantage of Twitter and other forums to do, share, and discuss research

Reading Frames

Can Science Crack Consciousness?

Researchers seek to disentangle the complexity of the human mind from a cross-disciplinary perspective, but the phenomenon may be out of the reach of human understanding.


Two-Photon Microscopy’s Historic Influence on Neuroscience

In the 1990s, the development of this gentler and more precise microscopy method improved scientists’ ability to probe neurons’ activity and anatomy.

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