Zebrafish give new insight to sound sensitivity in autism

These tiny fish are helping scientists understand how the human brain processes sound.

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  • Fragile X syndrome is a genetic disorder caused by changes in a gene that scientists call the "fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1)" gene. People who have FXS or autism often struggle with sensitivity to sound.
  • According to the research team, FXS is caused by the disruption of a gene. By disrupting that same gene in zebrafish larvae, they can examine the effects and begin to understand more about this disrupted gene in the human brain.
  • Using the zebrafish, Dr. Constantin and the team were able to gather insights into which parts of the brain are used to process sensory information.
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Colors evoke similar emotions around the world, survey finds

Certain colors are globally linked to certain feelings, the study reveals.

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  • Color psychology is often used in marketing to alter your perception of products and services.
  • Various studies and experiments across multiple years have given us more insight into the link between personality and color.
  • The results of a new study spanning 6 continents (30 nations) shows universal correlations between colors and emotions around the globe.
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Study links 'sun-seeking behavior' to genes involved in addiction

A large-scale study from King's College London explores the link between genetics and sun-seeking behaviors.

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  • There are a number of physical and mental health benefits to sun exposure, such as boosted vitamin D and serotonin levels and stronger bones.
  • Addictions are multi-step conditions that, by definition, require exposure to the addictive agent and have also been proven to have a genetic factor. Countless people are exposed to addictive things, but not all become addicted. This is because of the genetic component of addiction.
  • This large-scale study explores the link between sun-seeking behaviors and the genetic markers for addiction.
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Animal magnetism: Bacteria may help creatures sense Earth's magnetic fields

An intriguing theory explains animals' magnetic sense.

Credit: PedroNevesDesign/designer_an/Shutterstock/Big Think
  • Some animals can navigate via magnetism, though scientists aren't sure how.
  • Research shows that some of these animals contain magnetotactic bacteria.
  • These bacteria align themselves along the magnetic field's grid lines.
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Is it COVID-19 or anxiety? Here's how to tell the difference

Examining the differences between anxiety and COVID-19 symptoms and discussing the possibility of IAD (illness anxiety disorder) during a global pandemic.

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  • Anxiety can cause symptoms that may mimic (or have you worried about) coronavirus symptoms.
  • There are several symptoms of anxiety that are also symptoms of COVID-19, however, there are also key differences in the symptoms of both.
  • IAD (illness anxiety disorder) may also lead to some confusion about symptoms. The World Health Organization offers guidelines for when to seek medical attention.
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