News and analysis on the implications of brain science

FENS: How Far Should Brain Researchers Go?

by Moheb Costandi

The Dana Foundation | July 14, 2014

How much should we enhance our brains, how far should we go to treat risky pre-term pregnancies, and when can we morally do research on people having surgery for something else were among the topics at the William Safire Seminar on Neuroethics.

Neuroscience Approaches the Bench

by Terry Devitt

University of Wisconsin-Madison News | June 10, 2014

Last week, the Neuroscience and Public Policy Program at UW-Madison co-hosted an AAAS and the Dana Foundation sponsored seminar on neuroscience for judges from around the country.

My DNA Made Me Do It? How Behavioral Genetics Is Influencing the Justice System

by Virginia Hughes

National Geographic | June 4, 2014

As genetic evidence becomes more common in criminal and civil cases, education about what genes can and cannot tell us should be improved.

Morality Pills: Reality or Science Fiction?

by Molly Crockett

The Guardian | June 3, 2014

The complexities of ethics and the brain make it difficult for scientists to develop a pill to enhance human morals.

Magnetic Manipulation of the Sense of Morality

by Mo Costandi

Neurophilosophy Blog | May 30, 2014

A newly published report from MIT reports “that magnetic pulses which disrupt activity in a specific region of the brain’s right hemisphere can interfere with the ability to make certain types of moral judgements.”

From the Archives: Neuroethics

by Nicky Penttila

Dana Foundation Blog | May 29, 2014

Inspired by the BRAIN Initiative's first report, which tackles neuroethics, we went to the Dana archives to look at progress made in the field.

Thousands of Toddlers Are Medicated for A.D.H.D., Report Finds, Raising Worries

by Alan Schwarz

The New York Times | May 16, 2014

The practice draws concern, in part, because there has been little study on the use of A.D.H.D. drugs for children under 3.

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Gray Matters: Integrative Approaches for Neuroscience, Ethics, and Society

by Misti Ault Anderson

The blog of the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues | May 14, 2014

“[T]he Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues released its report, Gray Matters: Integrative Approaches for Neuroscience, Ethics, and Society (Gray Matters, Vol. 1), the first of two reports it will produce in response to President Obama’s charge to consider the ethical issues associated with neuroscience research and the application and implications of neuroscience research findings.”

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Inside the Strange New World of DIY Brain Stimulation

by Greg Miller

Wired | May 5, 2014

Regular people are literally buying into the promise of brain stimulation to improve mood, memory, and focus (among other things), by buying and building stimulation devices. While some people report positive outcomes from this type of brain stimulation, many scientists warn that the research is still in its infancy.

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1st Annual International Neuroethics Society Student Essay Prize

International Neuroethics Society | May 5, 2014

The International Neuroethics Society is pleased to announce a call for submissions for a new student prize in neuroethics. All current postsecondary students in any discipline (undergraduate, graduate, or professional) are eligible and invited to submit a single-author essay on any topic in neuroethics (e.g. ethical, legal, policy, and social implications of neuroscience) by May 20. The top two winners will receive a one-year student membership to INS, a travel stipend to attend the annual meeting, and opportunities to be published.

International Neuroethics Society Annual Meeting: Call for Abstracts

International Neuroethics Society | May 5, 2014

The International Neuroethics Society (INS) welcomes abstracts reporting recent results in the field of neuroethics and related topics. Investigators at any career stage are encouraged to submit abstracts by the May 15 deadline. Selections will be made based on content, available space and overall program balance. Participants may submit the same abstract for the INS meeting as for the Society for Neuroscience Meeting. Five submissions will be selected for oral presentations, twenty-five will be published by the American Journal of Bioethics Neuroscience, and cash travel stipends will be awarded.

Scientists Can’t Read Your Mind With Brain Scans (Yet)

by Greg Miller

Wired | April 29, 2014

“We can decode mental states to a degree,” said John-Dylan Haynes, a cognitive neuroscientist at Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin. “But we are far from a universal mind reading machine.”

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