Perspectives

Expert opinions on trends and controversies in neuroscience

Image of neural activity in a mouse as seen through the Miniscope.

Designing an open-source microscope

Funding for the development of open-source tools is on the rise, but support for their maintenance and dissemination, both crucial for their meaningful uptake, remains a major challenge.

By Daniel Aharoni
17 June 2024 | 6 min read
Portrait of Matthew Siegel sitting on a staircase.

Pinning down ‘profound autism’ for reliable research: Q&A with Matthew Siegel

A clear and actionable definition for the term could enhance research and improve care, Matthew Siegel says.

By Katie Moisse
13 June 2024 | 7 min read
Abstract illustration of paper shapes representing different kinds of ideas and speech.

Must a theory be falsifiable to contribute to good science?

Four researchers debate the role that non-testable theories play in neuroscience.

By Grace Lindsay, moderator
10 June 2024 | 55 min read

Knowledge graphs can help make sense of the flood of cell-type data

These tools, widely used in the technology industry, could provide a foundation for the study of brain circuits.

By Michael Hawrylycz
28 May 2024 | 7 min read
Publishing Microphone

At the credit crossroads: Modern neuroscience needs a cultural shift to adopt new authorship practices

Old heuristics to acknowledge contributors—calling out first and last authors, with everyone else in between—don’t work well for large collaborative and interdisciplinary projects, yet they remain the default.

By Megan Peters
20 May 2024 | 9 min listen

It’s past time to stop using the Reading the Mind in the Eyes Test

The widely used measure of “theory of mind” needs to be re-examined, along with the long-standing claim that autism is linked to a lack of this ability.

By Wendy C. Higgins, Robert M. Ross
16 May 2024 | 8 min read
Picture of Melbourne, Australia at night.

Autism research is becoming more diverse but not yet more global

Hosting the International Society for Autism Research annual meeting—which starts tomorrow—in Australia takes a step in that direction, making it easier for researchers, clinicians and advocates from the Western Pacific Region to participate.

By Petrus de Vries
14 May 2024 | 5 min read
A hand holds multi-colored cubes.
Future of fMRI Microphone

Should we use the computational or the network approach to analyze functional brain-imaging data—why not both?

Emerging methods make it possible to combine the two tactics from opposite ends of the analytic spectrum, enabling scientists to have their cake and eat it too.

By Mac Shine
13 May 2024 | 7 min listen
An illustration of a figure looking at a flow chart

Neuroscience needs a research-video archive

Video data are enormously useful and growing rapidly, but the field lacks a searchable, shareable way to store them.

By Robert Froemke
6 May 2024 | 6 min read
Photograph of objects delicately balanced to keep a plank of wood level as it sits on a cylindrical block.

How to explore your scientific values and develop a vision for your field

As a new professor, I was caught off guard by one part of the job: my role as an evaluator.

By Grace Lindsay
3 May 2024 | 5 min listen

Explore more from The Transmitter

Research illustration groups genes by their effects on brain cell types.

Giant analysis reveals how autism-linked genes affect brain cell types

Genes that predispose people to autism account for a large portion of the neuronal and glial cell changes seen in those with the condition.

By Charles Q. Choi
20 June 2024 | 5 min read

Widely used calcium imaging protocol can lead to spurious results, new paper cautions

The technique, which measures calcium currents as a proxy for neuronal firing, sometimes reports unusual and potentially misleading waves of activity in the hippocampus.

By Angie Voyles Askham
19 June 2024 | 0 min watch
Research image of white-matter density in brains of people with deletions or duplications in the 16p11.2 chromosomal region.

Double-empathy problem; dup15q syndrome; myelin loss in aging autistic adults

Here is a roundup of autism-related news and research spotted around the web for the week of 17 June.

By Jill Adams
18 June 2024 | 2 min read