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Brain mechanism may lead to treatment of neurological disorders


Narrator:       This is Science Today. A discovery by UCLA researchers may lead to new therapies for treating neurological disorders and learning disabilities. Study leader Mayank Mehta found there's an optimal brain rhythm at which neurons make connections to each other. These findings provide a theory of the mechanisms that underlie learning in the brain. Mehta explains these brain rhythms are involved in neurological disorders.

Mehta:           Turns out the brain rhythms change during epileptic seizures. During schizophrenia, a specific part of the brain has brain rhythms altered. We hypothesize that these altered brain rhythms in these diseases is not just the result of the disease but is potentially a cause of the brain disease itself. Maybe we can use this to both figure out how the brain works and treat certain disorders.

Narrator:       Mehta said possible therapies could include using pharmaceutical agents or electrical stimulation to "de-tune" synaptic frequencies in the brain that have become dysfunctional. For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.