Navigation Links
Songbirds' learning hub in brain offers insight into motor control
Date:5/20/2012

To learn its signature melody, the male songbird uses a trial-and-error process to mimic the song of its father, singing the tune over and over again, hundreds of times a day, making subtle changes in the pitch of the notes. For the male Bengalese finch, this rigorous training process begins around the age of 40 days and is completed about day 90, just as he becomes sexually mature and ready to use his song to woo females.

To accomplish this feat, the finch's brain must receive and process large quantities of information about its performance and use that data to precisely control the complex vocal actions that allow it to modify the pitch and pattern of its song.

Now, scientists at UCSF have shown that a key brain structure acts as a learning hub, receiving information from other regions of the brain and figuring out how to use that information to improve its song, even when it's not directly controlling the action. These insights may help scientists figure out new ways to treat neurological disorders that impair movement such as Huntington's disease and Parkinson's disease.

The research is reported as an advanced online publication on May 20, 2012 by the journal Nature, and will appear at a later date in the journal's print edition.

Years of research conducted in the lab of Michael Brainard, PhD, an associate professor of physiology at UCSF, has shown that adult finches can keep track of slight differences in the individual "syllables," or notes, they play and hear, and make mental computations that allow them to alter the pitch.

For previous experiments, Brainard and his colleagues developed a training process that induced adult finches to calibrate their song. They created a computer program that could recognize the pitch of every syllable the bird sang. The computer also delivered a sound the birds didn't likea kind of white noiseat the very moment they uttered a specific note. Within a few hours, th
'/>"/>

Contact: Jennifer O'Brien
jennifer.obrien@ucsf.edu
415-502-6397
University of California - San Francisco
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Size matters: Length of songbirds’ playlists linked to brain region proportions
2. Songbirds tweak their tunes in different ways to cope with clamor
3. Tweeting teenage songbirds reveal impact of social cues on learning
4. Transgenic songbirds provide new tool to understand the brain
5. Beavers: Dam good for songbirds
6. Dartmouth researchers are learning how exercise affects the brain
7. Awake mental replay of past experiences critical for learning
8. Majority-biased learning
9. NJIT researchers publish news of success with robots as learning tool
10. UC Arlitt Center awarded NSF grant to research learning at PlayScapes
11. Flexible learning in a virtual microscope lab
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:7/11/2014)... from Ume University, Sweden, have explored two different ... reaction sequence leading to the formation of oxygen ... published in the scientific journal Nature Communications ... present day synthetic catalysts for water oxidation, which ... for the direct storage of solar energy in ...
(Date:7/11/2014)... that under the normal circumstances, astrocytes participate ... neuronal environment, and exhibit therapeutic and repairing ... Previous studies have found that nerve cells ... induction have reduced viability, which produces influences ... Yuan, Kailuan General Hospital, Hebei United University, ...
(Date:7/10/2014)... other major cities in New Mexico, nearly every public ... rather than precious potable water supplies. Across the U.S. ... golf courses receive treated effluent. Reusing the effluent increases ... courses and homeowners alike fertilize their lawns during the ... A New Mexico State University turfgrass expert has a ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Molecular snapshots of oxygen formation in photosynthesis 2'Tailored' water -- the latest in lawn care 2
... have designed a nanoscale system to observe and ... By combining microfabricated cantilevers and magnetic ... study showed that cells respond to outside forces ... and their environment. The study also revealed that ...
... by the Health Department shed new light on the health ... responded to the World Trade Center disaster on September 11, ... Registry, show that 3.6% of the 25,000 rescue and recovery ... at the site. That rate is 12 times what would ...
... and their collaborators will make it much easier to ... papers are published in Nature Biotechnology on 8th and ... biological information and the use of public data repositories ... is vital to allow full integration, exchange and comparison ...
Cached Biology News:Bioengineers at University of Pennsylvania devise nanoscale system to measure cellular forces 2Survey finds elevated rates of new asthma among WTC rescue and recovery workers 2Survey finds elevated rates of new asthma among WTC rescue and recovery workers 3Minimum information standards -- all for 1 and 1 for all 2Minimum information standards -- all for 1 and 1 for all 3
(Date:7/10/2014)... Unraveling life’s mysteries can intrigue, amaze, ... Family purchased a DNA test to unravel ... with a lifetime of memories, sharing, and closeness. In ... DNA genuinely brought the family closer together. , ... genetic history and prior to taking the genetic ...
(Date:7/10/2014)... Senior supply chain management executives from over 50 ... of “Reducing Cost, Lead Time, & Defects in the ... the partnership of the Bio Supply Management Alliance ( ... SCMI) of the University of San Diego in ... Institute of Peace and Justice in San Diego, Devendra ...
(Date:7/10/2014)... , July 10, 2014 /PRNewswire-iReach/ -- ... and interpretation, today announced an agreement with ... analytics for Lineagen,s NextStep Dx PLUS.  ... neurodevelopmental and neurological disorders, currently offers FirstStep ... (CMA) testing service used by healthcare providers ...
(Date:7/10/2014)... Adelaide research may help in the fight against terrorism ... tiny quantities of explosives with the use of light ... Sensors and Actuators B: Chemical , the researchers ... explosives in concentrations as low as 6.3 ppm (parts ... a few minutes. , "Traditionally explosives detection has involved ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Ancestry DNA Test Reveals a Controversial and Undiscovered Family History 2Ancestry DNA Test Reveals a Controversial and Undiscovered Family History 3Ancestry DNA Test Reveals a Controversial and Undiscovered Family History 4Ancestry DNA Test Reveals a Controversial and Undiscovered Family History 5Biotech & Biopharm Supply Chain Management Executives Launch BSMA in San Diego 2Biotech & Biopharm Supply Chain Management Executives Launch BSMA in San Diego 3Biotech & Biopharm Supply Chain Management Executives Launch BSMA in San Diego 4Tute Genomics Platform Selected to Provide Clinical Interpretation for Lineagen's NextStepDx PLUS Next-Generation Sequencing-Based Diagnostic Test 2Tute Genomics Platform Selected to Provide Clinical Interpretation for Lineagen's NextStepDx PLUS Next-Generation Sequencing-Based Diagnostic Test 3Tute Genomics Platform Selected to Provide Clinical Interpretation for Lineagen's NextStepDx PLUS Next-Generation Sequencing-Based Diagnostic Test 4Detecting trace amounts of explosives with light 2
... among the oldest known life-forms, but they are not ... these single-celled microorganisms were designated as a domain of ... Robert Gunsalus, a UCLA professor of ... Archaea because of their ability to thrive ...
... By applying a coating to individual silicon nanowires, researchers ... efficiency and sensitivity. The findings, published in the ... suggest that the coated wires hold promise for photodetectors ... to a large surface-to-volume ratio, nanowires typically suffer from ...
... Netherlands, July 6, 2011 , ... biotechnology company,focusing on development and marketing of gene ... that it,has signed a Research Agreement with Johnson ... N.V. (Janssen).  Under the agreement Skyline,using its proprietary ...
Cached Biology Technology:Old life capable of revealing new tricks after all 2Old life capable of revealing new tricks after all 3With a simple coating, nanowires show a dramatic increase in efficiency and sensitivity 2Skyline Diagnostics Establishes Research Collaboration With Janssen 2
MOUSE ANTI SIMIAN VIRUS 5 Immunogen: Simian virus 5...
... Dog Serum-Mixed Breed • Dog serum is collected ... one year of age Available Anticoagulants: ... (Na) N-06: K2EDTA N-08: ... N-03: Alsevers N-05: ACD ...
Ready-to-use; 40mg/ml X-Gal and 32mg/ml IPTG...
Whole blood is collected from canines (any breed, either sex), refrigerated within 6 hours, processed within 24 hours and frozen at -20C....
Biology Products: