Rats

Illustrated portrait of Loren Frank.
Synaptic Microphone

The value of math and spatial learning with Loren Frank

The Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator discusses what drew him to study the brain and his current work at the University of California, San Francisco.

By Brady Huggett
1 April 2024 | 61 min listen
Close up of blood vessels shows probe sticking to vessel wall.

Brain-surgery-free probes can record single-neuron activity

The new devices, which monitor neural activity from within blood vessels, show long-term stability in rats and could one day deliver electrical stimulation.

By Charles Q. Choi
15 August 2023 | 5 min read

‘wildDISCO’ cocktail yields whole-body maps of mouse neurons and more

A new technique used to create see-through rodents can help scientists analyze how the nervous system interacts with other body systems.

By Charles Q. Choi
20 July 2023 | 4 min read
Research image of rodent brain scans.

CRISPR tool rids rodents of oxytocin receptors

The approach provides an “off-the-shelf” way for researchers to compare oxytocin function across species, the team says.

By Angie Voyles Askham
14 June 2023 | 3 min read
An illustration of a scientist on a stage with a giant pill bottle that has been chopped in half.

Company on brink takes psilocybin to trial for fragile X syndrome

The phase 2A trial has its detractors despite positive animal results and is being sponsored by a company that is struggling financially.

By Peter Hess
25 April 2023 | 9 min listen
Mother and child rhesus macaque monkeys.

Serotonin initiates earliest social bonds

Mice and rats, for example, gravitate toward their mother’s bedding over bedding that is clean or smells of a different dam.

By Angie Voyles Askham
2 March 2023 | 5 min read
Illustration of a pregnant woman seated next to a large diagram of the brain featuring chromosomes, bacteria and other microbes.
Spectrum Microphone

The link between maternal infection and autism, explained

Having an infection during pregnancy is tied to a small increase in the chances of having an autistic child, but the connection may not be causal.

By Charles Q. Choi
13 December 2022 | 7 min read
A transplanted human organoid labeled with a fluorescent protein in a section of the rat brain.
Spectrum Microphone

Human cortical organoids forge functional circuits in rat brains

The transplanted cells integrate into living animals’ neural circuitry and influence behavior.

By Peter Hess
12 October 2022 | 4 min read

New software flags autism rat model’s telltale squeaks

By breaking rodent vocalizations into parts, TrackUSF distinguishes rats with mutations in the SHANK3 gene from their wildtype counterparts.

By Peter Hess
29 July 2022 | 3 min read
Micrograph of neuron dendrite segments.

Maternal sleep apnea may contribute to autism-like traits in rats

Pups born to mothers that experience low oxygen during sleep have overactive mTOR signaling, which has been linked to some forms of autism.

By Angie Voyles Askham
18 March 2022 | 5 min read

Explore more from The Transmitter

A marble bust of a face that is covered in real leaves.

Newly found circuit through visual cortex powers first look at faces

The superior colliculus, an evolutionarily ancient brain area responsible for eye movements, responds to faces before the canonical face areas do, a study of macaque monkeys suggests.

By Olivia Gieger
19 July 2024 | 5 min read

Brain organoid size matches intensity of social problems in autistic people

Overgrown organoids could point to mechanisms underlying profound autism.

By Holly Barker
18 July 2024 | 5 min read

Persistent protein pairing enables memories to last

The complex of two memory proteins, rather than the individual molecules acting independently, underlie month-long memories in mice, a new study suggests.

By Elissa Welle
17 July 2024 | 5 min read