Feature Channels: Cognition and Learning

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Embargo will expire: 8-Apr-2020 4:00 PM EDT Released to reporters: 6-Apr-2020 5:25 PM EDT

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1-Apr-2020 4:05 PM EDT
Managing Negative Thoughts Helps Combat Depression in Parkinson’s Patients
Rutgers University-New Brunswick

People with Parkinson’s disease who engage in cognitive behavioral therapy — a form of psychotherapy that increases awareness of negative thinking and teaches coping skills — are more likely to overcome depression and anxiety, according to a Rutgers study.

25-Mar-2020 9:00 AM EDT
Better controlled diabetes is associated with preserved cognitive function following stroke
Endocrine Society

Better glucose control can help people with diabetes who have a common type of stroke to preserve their cognitive function, according to a study accepted for presentation at ENDO 2020, the Endocrine Society’s annual meeting. The abstract will be published in a special supplemental issue of the Journal of the Endocrine Society.

23-Mar-2020 3:40 PM EDT
Study: An Aspirin a Day Does Not Keep Dementia at Bay
American Academy of Neurology (AAN)

Taking a low-dose aspirin once a day does not reduce the risk of thinking and memory problems caused by mild cognitive impairment or probable Alzheimer’s disease, nor does it slow the rate of cognitive decline, according to a large study published in the March 25, 2020, online issue of Neurology®, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

Newswise: Five language outcome measures evaluated for intellectual disabilities studies
23-Mar-2020 8:30 AM EDT
Five language outcome measures evaluated for intellectual disabilities studies
UC Davis Health

Expressive language sampling yielded five language-related outcome measures that may be useful for treatment studies in intellectual disabilities, especially fragile X syndrome. The measures were generally valid and reliable across the range of ages, IQs and autism symptom severity of participants. According to the study, led by UC Davis researchers and funded by NIH, the measures are also functional in supporting treatments that can improve language, providing far reaching benefits for individuals with intellectual disabilities.

17-Mar-2020 8:30 AM EDT
Neuroimaging links brain region to poor spatial navigation in children affected by prenatal alcohol exposure
Research Society on Alcoholism

Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD) describe the range of effects associated with prenatal alcohol exposure (PAE). The most severe forms of FASD are fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) and partial fetal alcohol syndrome (PFAS), which have adverse effects on learning and memory and result in observable physical abnormalities, including a distinct pattern of facial dysmorphic features, small head circumference, and growth restriction. Identifying the specific brain regions affected is important to fully understand the impact of PAE. Poor spatial skills are common in children with FASD, and tests of navigation in rodents – and more recently, humans – have linked PAE to impairment in ‘place learning’ (the learning of physical positions or locations of objects). Place learning in rodents and humans depends on the hippocampus, a small seahorse-shaped structure in each side of the brain. The hippocampus is particularly sensitive to PAE and is smaller in people (and rodents) exposed to alcohol in

12-Mar-2020 3:30 PM EDT
People Prone to Disengage from Difficult Tasks and Goals May Experience Greater Cognitive Decline After Retirement
American Psychological Association (APA)

Certain middle-aged and older adults, especially women who tend to disengage from difficult tasks and goals after they retire, may be at greater risk of cognitive decline as they age, according to research published by the American Psychological Association.

Released: 12-Mar-2020 10:15 AM EDT
Surgery with anesthesia not associated with leading indicator of Alzheimer’s disease, Mayo Clinic study finds
Mayo Clinic

Older adults who have surgery with general anesthesia may experience a modest acceleration of cognitive decline, even years later. But there's no evidence of a link to Alzheimer's disease, according to new research from Mayo Clinic.

Released: 11-Mar-2020 10:10 AM EDT
Majority of Physician Anesthesiologists Treat Older Adults, But Less than 10% Screen for Frailty or Dementia Pre- or Postoperatively, Survey Finds
American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA)

A national, non-scientific survey from the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) finds that more than 96% of respondents treated a patient 65 or older in 2018. However, despite guidelines, more than 80% physician anesthesiologists rarely or never perform preoperative screening for cognitive impairment or frailty for older surgical patients.

Released: 6-Mar-2020 4:10 PM EST
Improving detection of prenatal alcohol exposure using complementary tools
Research Society on Alcoholism

Drinking while pregnant can harm the developing fetus, leading to physical, cognitive, and neurobehavioral effects that may persist into adulthood. No safe level of alcohol in pregnancy has been identified, and many guidelines now recommend total abstinence. However, prenatal drinking remains common, particularly early on before women are aware of their pregnancy.

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