Research news

  • Language-selective (red) and domain-general (blue) subregions of Broca's area shown in a few sample subjects. Image: Evelina Fedorenko, Nancy Kanwisher

    Brain’s language center has multiple roles

    A century and a half ago, French physician Pierre Paul Broca found that patients with damage to part of the brain’s frontal lobe were unable to speak more than a few words. Later dubbed Broca’s area, this region is believed to …

  • Mehrdad Jazayeri

    Mehrdad Jazayeri to join McGovern Institute faculty

    We are pleased to announce the appointment of Mehrdad Jazayeri as an Investigator at the McGovern Institute for Brain Research. He will join the institute in January 2013, with a faculty appointment as assistant professor in MIT’s Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences.
  • Brain scans of patients with social anxiety disorder can predict which patients will benefit most from cognitive-behavioral therapy. Left, patterns of activity in patients with better outcomes; right, patients with worse outcomes. Images: Satrajit Ghosh, Susan Whitfield-Gabrieli, John Gabrieli

    Predicting how patients respond to therapy

    Social anxiety is usually treated with either cognitive behavioral therapy or medications. However, it is currently impossible to predict which treatment will work best for a particular patient. The team of researchers from MIT, Boston…

  • Photo: Kent Dayton

    Stroke disrupts how brain controls muscle synergies

    The simple act of picking up a pencil requires the coordination of dozens of muscles: The eyes and head must turn toward the object as the hand reaches forward and the fingers grasp it. To make this job more manageable, the brain’s motor…

  • Photo: Justin Knight

    Thinking about others is not child’s play

    When you try to read other people’s thoughts, or guess why they are behaving a certain way, you employ a skill known as theory of mind. This skill, as measured by false-belief tests, takes time to develop: In children, it doesn’t…

  • A mouse inside a box where it learns to associate an odor with a water reward. Photo: Justin Knight

    Re-creating autism, in mice

    By mutating a single gene, researchers at MIT and Duke have produced mice with two of the most common traits of autism — compulsive, repetitive behavior and avoidance of social interaction.

    They further showed that this gene, which is also…

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