News

CNS faculty collaborate on crime and brain

Adrian Raine and Roy Hamilton, along with grad student Olivia Choy, have just published a study in Journal of Neuroscience entitled "Stimulation of the Prefrontal Cortex Reduces Intentions to Commit Aggression: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Stratified, Parallel-Group Trial.”  You can read veteran science writer Sharon Begley’s report here: https://www.statnews.com/2018/07/02/brain-electric-stimulation-violence/ and read the [...]

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CNS Undergraduate Fellow applies science to policy

Julia Pan, one of the outstanding Penn undergrads who participated in our Undergraduate Fellows program last year, has been actively applying her education in neuroscience and cognitive science to real world problems, including in the Philadelphia Mayor’s Office.  Read about her exciting work here. To read more about the CNS [...]

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Opportunity for grad students interested in neuroscience & society

The Center for Neuroscience & Society has established an Undergraduate Fellows Program, in which a small group of highly motivated juniors and seniors explore the interface of neuroscience and society through reading, discussing, attending talks and writing. This year the program was launched with Hilary Gerstein as its Director. (For [...]

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2018 SCAN Retreat Recap

Each year, the CNS hosts a half-day retreat for all current and past students in the SCAN program. The 4th Annual SCAN Retreat took place earlier this February. Students and alumni came together for lunch, followed by a series of student presentations in which a few students gave brief overviews of the [...]

Eric Kandel on his life in neuroscience and the arts

Join us on April 17 when Eric Kandel speaks about his life, from his Jewish roots in Vienna to his Nobel Prize winning neuroscience research in the US, with reflections on the relation between science and the arts.  Hosted by the Katz Center for Advanced Judaic studies with co-sponsorship from [...]

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Allyson Mackey receives APS award!

The Association for Psychological Science has named our own Professor Mackey a “Rising Star” for her work on early experience and brain development.  You can hear about her fascinating and important work at the final CNS monthly talk this year.  The year’s theme is Brain Development and Society - see [...]

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Critical Analysis of fMRI – suicide prediction

CNS Associate Directors, Geoff Aguirre and Stephen Morse, led a fascinating seminar today on Critical Analysis of fMRI.  A large gathering of scholars discussed the new paper by Just et al (2017) and its findings in the use of fMRI for prediction of suicide, as well as ethical considerations into [...]

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The Neuroscience of Socioeconomic Status

In this new review, published in the journal Neuron, Dr. Farah explains the concept of socioeconomic status and its possible neural and behavioral correlates in the brain.  After summarizing the substantial body of work that has shown evidence for associations between SES and brain structure and function, Dr. Farah discusses [...]

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NIH announces its latest call for neuroethics grant proposals

Part of NIH’s support for the BRAIN initiative has been devoted to working on the ethical, legal and social implications of neuroscience.  For the coming year, they have announced RFA-MH-18-500, aimed at supporting research on the ethics of brain science and neurotechnology, which will be "both complementary and integrative with the [...]

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CNS faculty team up to test brain training!

Joe Kable, Caryn Lerman and colleagues report the first randomized, controlled trial test of Lumosity brain training.  They found neither improved cognition nor enhanced brain activity.  Read their J of Neurosci article here and a good open access write-up at UPI here.

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CNS announces new fellowship opportunities for undergrads!

The Center for Neuroscience & Society at Penn is seeking applications from rising Penn sophomores, juniors and seniors for its first class of CNS Undergraduate Fellows for 2017-18! Selected fellows will participate in a series of seminars, projects, and activities exploring the intersection of neuroscience and society, such as the [...]

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CNS Undergraduate Fellows Program

The Center for Neuroscience & Society at the University of Pennsylvania is seeking applications from rising Penn juniors and seniors for its new group of CNS Undergraduate Fellows for 2018-19. This program is intended for students from any School or department who have identified an interest in exploring the intersection [...]

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Predicting Mens Rea with fMRI

Penn’s own Stephen Morse helped develop a novel method for discriminating criminal acts committed with knowledge versus recklessly, in collaboration with a team from the MacArthur Network on Law and Neuroscience.  Read it here: http://www.pnas.org/content/114/12/3222.full

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PIK Professor Michael Platt joins CNS

PIK Professor Michael Platt, a social neuroscientist who has just joined the faculty of the CNS, spoke recently on the neuroscience of political forecasting with another Penn PIK professor, Barbara Mellers. See and hear more here.

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2017 SCAN Retreat Recap

Each year, the CNS hosts a half-day retreat for all current and past students in the SCAN program. The 3rd Annual SCAN Retreat took place earlier this February. Students and alumni came together for lunch, followed by a series of student presentations in which a few students gave brief overviews of [...]

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Two new SCAN electives will be offered Spring 2017

PSYC 557-301 Neuroscience, Ethics & Law, taught by Martha Farah, will explore how the neuroscience of decision-making and emotion impacts our understanding of ethics and the law. PSYC 449-301 Neuroscience for PolicyMakers, taught by Hilary Gerstein, will discuss the neuroscience behind some of the most relevant issues in public science [...]

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Neuroscience and music this Saturday, Dec 3

Penn’s own Mike Kaplan will provide the neuroscience, brilliant jazz guitarist Pat Martino and others the music…  According to Mike, Martino had "an impressive career in the sixties and seventies, almost died in 1980 when a hemorrhage necessitated the removal of most of his left temporal lobe. He went on to [...]

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New Associate Director for Education at CNS

We are thrilled to announce a new position at the CNS, and a new person to fill it:  Dr. Hilary Gerstein comes to us from the Society for Neuroscience in DC, where she worked to inform the public, including lawmakers and their Capitol Hill staff, about neuroscience.  Her own neuroscience [...]

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NYT Op Ed on “DIY” Brain Stimulation

CNS Visiting Scholar Anna Wexler explained the phenomenon of DIY brain stimulation in Sunday’s New York Times. Her piece, called “Zapping Their Brains at Home,” also corrected the widespread assumption that DIY users are all foolhardy and reckless, describing the ways in which they have sought guidance from the scientific [...]

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Visit the CNS!

The CNS has hosted visitors for periods ranging from a few weeks to a year.  Would you like to visit us too?  Starting in January of 2017 we will have beautiful new light-filled office space for up to 3 visitors in the National Historic Landmark Goddard Labs building, designed by [...]

Animal Research Neuroethics Workshop

In June, the Penn Center for Neuroscience and Society (CNS) and the Penn Center for Interaction of Animals and Society (CIAS) are hosting a two day workshop examining the unique ethical issues that arise in neuroscience research on nonhuman animals.  Topics to be discussed include animal models for pain and psychiatric [...]

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Announcing NeuWrite Philadelphia!

A neurite is part of a neuron. NeuWrite is a group of serious amateur and professional science writers who work together developing their skills. Penn postdoc Anna Leshinskaya was a member of Boston’s NeuWrite community (http://www.neuwriteboston.org/about) and is bringing the group to Philadelphia. For more information: anna.leshinskaya@gmail.com.

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Announcing Wharton’s first neuroscience course!

Professor Wes Hutchinson will teach "Consumer Neuroscience" this spring!  According to the syllabus, neuroscience and its applications to marketing and the development of brain-enhancing games and tools have undergone "explosive growth" and "been met with both excitement and skepticism."  The course will provide an overview of these developments and attempt to "separate 'neuro-reality' from 'neuro-hype'."

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In Science: “The Unknowns of Cognitive Enhancement”

In this week's Science, CNS Director Farah points out how little we know about the safety and efficacy of drugs and devices for cognitive enhancement, and asks whether science and policy can catch up with ongoing practice in this area.  http://www.sciencemag.org/content/350/6259/379.summary

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CNS is Hiring: Full-time Lecturer/Assoc. Director

The Center for Neuroscience and Society at the University of Pennsylvania is Seeking a PhD neuroscientist with teaching experience to join us as a full-time Lecturer and Associate Director of the graduate certificate program in Social, Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience (SCAN). Details: Teaching load of 2 and 2, including one [...]

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CNSers attending Neuroethics meeting!

The International Neuroethics Society meets in Chicago Oct 15-16. We'll be there!  Roy Hamilton, Adam Shriver, Anna Wexler and Rachel Wurzman will be presenting. Martha will be there soaking up all the interesting neuroethics news - check it out! http://www.neuroethicssociety.org/2015-annual-meeting-program

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