Are bilingual stroke patients more susceptible to aphasia?
Aphasia is a condition that commonly affects stroke patients, and leads to problems with the ability to speak, read, and understand language. Patients with aphasia suffer disproportionate levels of anxiety, depression and unemployment, at just the same time as their most basic coping mechanism — talking with family and friends — is being undermined. Stroke patients want to know whether, when, and in what respects they might hope to recover lost language skills - questions that have motivated a great deal of research into the factors that predict better or worse recovery from post-stroke aphasia.
Whether bilingualism (speaking more than one language) affects the severity of aphasia compared to monolingualism (speaking just one) is unclear, but bilingualism is the norm rather than the exception in many parts of the world. Many would assume being able to speak more than one language would lessen the effects of aphasia, as there is a greater understanding of language to draw on. New research suggests however, that bilingual stroke patients are actually more susceptible to aphasia than monolingual stroke patients.
Dozens of scientists conserve Britain’s oldest brain from face-down skull in Iron Age pit
Archaeologists mystified by 2,600-year preservation of brain belonging to victim of beheading in ancient York
The preservation of Britain’s oldest brain, found when archaeologists saw its spongy shape in a skull face-down in a pit at an Iron Age site in York in 2009, remains a mystery.
Water, oxygen and bacteria-supporting warmth would all have encouraged the brain to rot. The outside of the skull, which had its jaw and two vertebrae attached, has withered – but the Heslington Brain has remained intact.
Carnegie Mellon Univ. neuroscientists have identified a new pathway by which several brain areas communicate within the brain’s striatum.
Published in the Journal of Neuroscience,
the findings illustrate structural and functional connections that
allow the brain to use reinforcement learning to make spatial decisions,
such as the dorsolateral prefrontal (DLPFC), orbitofrontal cortex (OFC)
and posterior parietal cortex (PPC). Communication between these
regions is important for abilities like how a baseball player is able to
estimate where to swing his bat or how a person finds a car in a large
parking lot filled with similar cars.