Columbia University in the City of New York


The Senses

The Nerve Cells That Enable Fruit Flies to Escape Danger

From the lab of Wesley B. Grueber, PhD, Columbia's Zuckerman Institute

Down-and-back neurons (green) and nociceptive sensory neurons (red) in the ventral nerve cord of a fruit fly. Nerve bundles (blue) serve as an anatomical landmark (Credit: Anita Burgos/Grueber Lab/Columbia’s Zuckerman Institute).

News from about

The Senses March 16, 2018

The Nerve Cells That Enable Fruit Flies to Escape Danger

Findings offer clues into comparable survival strategies in people.

Learning & Memory March 1, 2018

In Pursuit of Pleasure, Brain Learns to Hit the Repeat Button

New study in mice shows how the brain learns to reproduce patterns of brain activity that lead to reward; provides insights for treating addiction and obsessive-compulsive disorder.

Tools & Technology February 16, 2018

The Brain Science of Sound

Nima Mesgarani, PhD, deciphers how the human brain distinguishes and interprets the sounds we hear. Now, he’s being recognized as one of 2018’s top innovators for his achievements.

Growth & Development February 14, 2018

Learning the Language of Love: The Brain Science of Songbirds

By examining birds' courtship rituals, and deciphering how they learn to sing to each other, Sarah Woolley, PhD, is shedding new light on how two brains can connect to become a pair.

Movement February 8, 2018

The Brain Science of Figure Skating: How Practice Makes Perfect

In celebration of the 2018 Winter Olympics, Silver Medalist Paul Wylie joins Drs. Rui Costa and Nathaniel Sawtell, neuroscientists at Columbia's Zuckerman Institute, on a journey inside the mind of some of the world's most elite athletes.

Disease January 31, 2018

Body Movements Just Need a “Puff” of Dopamine to Get Started

A new study in mice suggests that a burst of dopamine levels at the beginning of a movement only, as opposed to all the time, is what gets us going. This may have important implications for treating Parkinson’s disease.

Movement January 30, 2018

How the Brain Keeps the Body from Losing its Balance

Columbia University-led study in mice reveals a key mechanism that guides this fundamental aspect of movement.

Growth & Development January 25, 2018

The Stem Cells that Build a Fly’s Nervous System

Columbia study in fruit flies sheds light on key aspect of development; findings could build understanding of comparable system in people.

Evolution January 11, 2018

How Animals Left the Sea and Evolved to Walk on Land

By classifying different types of cells in the spinal cord, neuroscientists have gained new insight into an evolutionary achievement millions of years in the making.

Growth & Development December 1, 2017

Mapping the Many Steps it Takes to Build a Cell

In developing a new tool to trace the proteins that guide cellular development, Columbia scientists are deciphering one of biology’s most ancient systems.