Category Archives: Psychology

Pentagon Researches Ways to Boost Learning in Soldiers

Eight U.S. Department of Defense brain studies, one at Arizona State University, are investigating ways to help soldiers learn more efficiently.

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) hopes not just to make better sharpshooters, but also to shorten training periods for translators, analysts and cryptographers — and, perhaps, to improve outcomes for soldiers with brain injury and memory loss.

Read/listen to my full story at KJZZ’s Arizona Science Desk:
U.S. Department Of Defense Brain Study Seeks To Boost Learning In Soldiers

Take Summer Headaches Seriously, Warns Neurologist

“The Headache” by George Cruikshank.

Between the heat, dehydration, air quality and July 4 fireworks, many Arizonans shrug off headaches as just another symptom of summer.

But Kerry Knievel, director of headache neurology at Barrow Neurological Institute, said we need to start taking headaches more seriously.

Read/listen to my full story at KJZZ’s Arizona Science Desk:
Neurologist: Don’t Shrug Off Summer Headaches

Is Progress Outpacing Precaution? Experts Weigh In

Illustration by An Arres.

No one expects the machinery of progress to roll backwards, but sometimes it seems that no one is watching the speedometer (or manning the brakes, assuming any exist).  Is this a fair assessment? If so, should we be worried — and what can we do about it?

In this feature, experts on technology, risk, science, policy and neuroscience discuss risk, innovation and how our values affect our conceptions of both.

Read/listen to my full story at KJZZ’s Arizona Science Desk:
ASU Experts Weigh the Risks of Innovation

Mitochondria-Linked Genetic Changes Might Give Early Hint of Alzheimer’s Disease

Diagram of a mitochondrion, courtesy of Arizona State University.

Long before they develop neurofibrillary tangles or beta-amyloid plaques, brains with Alzheimer’s disease begin experiencing problems in their cells’ power plants — the mitochondria — that hinder their ability to make energy for cells.

Declines in gene expression related to mitochondria can occur in subjects as young as their early 30s.

Read/listen to my full story at KJZZ’s Arizona Science Desk:
Arizona Researchers Say Genetic Changes Could Help Spot Alzheimer’s Disease Early

Rude Burials Might Have Fueled Blood Feuds Among Ancient Sonorans

Photo of cacti at sunset
Photo by Tomas Castelazo.

Bodies buried  in unusual postures and without funeral rites could suggest a history of revenge and blood feud in certain ancient Sonoran Desert cultures, according to a paper in the August 2016 edition of Current Anthropology.

The authors say a rude burial would have deeply distressed the victim’s family and community — and sent a message of dominance and defiance. Read/listen to my full story at KJZZ’s Arizona Science Desk:

Haphazard Burials May Suggest Revenge, Blood Feud Among Sonoran Desert Cultures