Q & As

Listing of Q&As with scientists on their research and its applications or special topics in the field.

Sound Effects: The Link Between Hearing Loss and Cognitive Decline

June 26, 2019

Sensory difficulties, like hearing loss or vision problems, are not just about those senses but also the extra cognitive effort it takes to understand them. Dana Foundation grantee Jonathan Peelle talks about the cognitive challenges involved with hearing issues, how even slight deficits in “normal” hearing levels can lead to changes in how sound is processed, and why this work may offer us new insights into how hearing may be linked to the development of dementias.

Stimulating Rehabilitation After Stroke

May 28, 2019

It’s hard for doctors to predict who will recover fully after a stroke and who may not. Dana Foundation grantee Roy Hamilton is investigating using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to take measurements of the injured brain’s plasticity to see if this can predict how well it is healing.

Finding the Rhythm of Literacy

April 24, 2019

Dana grantee Nina Kraus and her lab discovered that synchronization ability, like tapping your foot along to a beat, matches the rapid brain activity linked to reading, language and phonological skills. Understanding children’s rhythmic strengths and bottlenecks could help teachers help them improve language skills.

Seeking an Image of the Smallest Strokes

March 20, 2019

Microinfarcts are too small to be detected in living humans. Dana grantee Andy Shih is working on new types of imaging that might someday be sharp enough to detect these tiny blood-vessel clogs.

Seeking the Triggers for Parkinson's

January 16, 2019

Dana Grantee Xin Jin has found a new role for the dopamine pathway D2—not just a brake but a switch.

Going Small to Attack Cancers

December 18, 2018

Dana Grantee Michelle Bradbury uses nanotechnology to test possible treatments for cancer that target the disease and avoid healthy tissues.

Developing a Theory of Mind

November 20, 2018

Dana Grantee Liane Young studies theory of mind, trying to distinguish what in the brain might be off in people with autism who have trouble with social cues.

Frontal Lobe Deficits and Financial Scams

October 23, 2018

Dana Grantee Natalie Denburg studies what makes some older adults more susceptible to fraud, and finds it’s probably not early dementia.

Reversing the Alzheimer’s Catastrophe

September 19, 2018

Dana Grantee Huntington Potter has found a promising potential treatment for Alzheimer’s by looking at the disease mechanisms of rheumatoid arthritis. One of our series of Q&As with neuroscientists.

Connecting the Dots to Find a Protein that Affects Tau

March 21, 2018

A variety of brain troubles can trigger tau to form tangles, leading to diseases like chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) and Alzheimer’s. While working to develop much-needed animal models that mimic the tricky process, Dana Foundation grantee Stanley Prusiner, M.D., found another protein, sortilin, that appears to govern tau’s actions.

Imaging Immune Therapies in Brain Tumor Patients

February 5, 2018

Brain tumors are the most common type of cancer occurring in children aged 14 and younger—as well as the leading cause of cancer death in that age group. Pediatric neurosurgeon Samuel Cheshier is working on new technologies to improve immunotherapy treatments and track their effectiveness over time.

When a Defective Heart Damages the Brain

October 3, 2017

Congenital heart defects, the most common type of birth defect, can lead to significant, long-lasting cognitive deficits. Dana Foundation grantee Daniel Licht discusses his research on preventing such deficits, and how the timing of surgery may be a key factor in improved outcomes.
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