29 MAR 2013 by ideonexus

 Learning New Langugages Instills Brain Growth

Even something that has been traditionally seen as the purview of the young—the ability to learn new languages —continues to change the landscape of the brain late into life. When a group of adults took a nine-month intensive course in modern standard Chinese, their brains’ white matter reorganized progressively (as measured monthly) in the left hemisphere language areas and their right hemisphere counterparts—as well as in t h e genu (anterior end) of the corpus collosum, that networ...
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Adults who learned Chinese showed white matter reorganization in their brains.

22 MAR 2013 by ideonexus

 NgR1 Improves Brain Plasticity in Adult Mice

Experience rearranges anatomical connectivity in the brain, but such plasticity is suppressed in adulthood. We examined the turnover of dendritic spines and axonal varicosities in the somatosensory cortex of mice lacking Nogo Receptor 1 (NgR1). Through adolescence, the anatomy and plasticity of ngr1 null mice are indistinguishable from control, but suppression of turnover after age 26 days fails to occur in ngr1−/− mice. Adolescent anatomical plasticity can be restored to 1-year-old mice ...
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The plasticity lost from our youth is revived in mice by deletion of Nogo-A ligand.