Scientists Discover 'Off Switch' For Brain
Researchers say they've been able to develop an "off switch" for brains using light pulses. This is big news for treatment of neurological disorders.By Collin Ruane | April 28, 2014
Researchers say they've been able to develop an "off switch" for brains using light pulses.
Scientists at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute used a technique known as "optogenetics" to shut off certain neurons in the brains cultured from rats. It's the reversal of a process first discovered in 2005 — when flashes of light were able to turn on neurons.
Researchers developed two new proteins which can be added to neurons in the brain. The MIT Technology Review explains those neurons then shut off when reacting to small light pulses.