A 3-D light switch for the brain

A new tool for neuroscientists delivers a thousand pinpricks of light to a chunk of gray matter smaller than a sugar cube. The new fiber-optic device, created by biologists and engineers at the Massachusetts Institute of ...

MS research: Myelin influences how brain cells send signals

The development of a new cell-culture system that mimics how specific nerve cell fibers in the brain become coated with protective myelin opens up new avenues of research about multiple sclerosis. Initial findings suggest ...

Are brains shrinking to make us smarter?

Human brains have shrunk over the past 30,000 years, puzzling scientists who argue it is not a sign we are growing dumber but that evolution is making the key motor leaner and more efficient.

Grey matter

Grey matter (or gray matter) is a major component of the central nervous system, consisting of neuronal cell bodies, neuropil (dendrites and both unmyelinated axons and myelinated axons), glial cells (astroglia and oligodendrocytes) and capillaries. Grey matter contains neural cell bodies, in contrast to white matter, which does not and mostly contains myelinated axon tracts. The color difference arises mainly from the whiteness of myelin. In living tissue, grey matter actually has a grey-brown color which comes from capillary blood vessels and neuronal cell bodies.

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