From: The Seattle Times

Medical: Teen brains are a work in progress

The Seattle Times:

How do teens alternate between shoplifting a case of beer, then “borrowing” a car and at other times scoring the winning goal or singing the National Anthem at perfect key?

The answer, of course, is that their brains are a work in progress, still churning out new bundles of cells and knitting them together with connections that may not be fully fashioned until they’re well into their 20s.

Researchers are finding more and more evidence that those cells and connections play multiple roles in developing not only self- control and forethought, but personality, social skills and, on the downside, mental disorders.

A recent study of brain cells in mice done at Yale University showed that when the creation of new cells is interrupted during adolescence, adult mice later show impaired social behavior, basically ignoring other mice. “These mice acted like they did not recognize other mice as mice,”said Arie Kaffman, an assistant professor of psychiatry and senior author of the study.

Read the whole story: The Seattle Times

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