Genetically engineered ‚Magneto‘ protein remotely controls brain and behaviour

Rangitikei Environmental Health Watch

From theguardian.com

“Badass” new method uses a magnetised protein to activate brain cells rapidly, reversibly, and non-invasivelyMo Costandi@mocost

Researchers in the United States have developed a new method for controlling the brain circuits associated with complex animal behaviours, using genetic engineering to create a magnetised protein that activates specific groups of nerve cells from a distance.

Understanding how the brain generates behaviour is one of the ultimate goals of neuroscience – and one of its most difficult questions. In recent years, researchers have developed a number of methods that enable them to remotely control specified groups of neurons and to probe the workings of neuronal circuits.The most powerful of these is a method called optogenetics, which enables researchers to switch populations of related neurons on or off on a millisecond-by-millisecond timescale with pulses of laser light. Another recently developed method, called chemogenetics, uses engineered proteins that…

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