News

News

The neuronal representation of the use of tools

Stéphanie Rossit, supported by the BIAL Foundation in the scope of project 184/14 – Decoding neural representations of human tool use from fMRI response patterns, identified the neural representations of how humans typically use tools. Furthermore, the study demonstrated that these representations occur even when the performance of the task does not require semantic processing. The paper “The role of the anterior temporal cortex in action: Evidence from fMRI multivariate searchlight analysis during real object grasping” featuring these results was published in the journal Scientific Reports.

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How does eye-contact affect the brain syncroninization?

Caroline Di Bernardi Luft, supported by the BIAL Foundation in the scope of project 138/18 – The neural signatures of leadership: Two-brain directed synchronization during eye-contact demonstrated that eye-contact affects the frequency and direction of brain synchronization, and that this synchronization differs between dyads. The paper “Social synchronization of brain activity increases during eye-contact” featuring these results was published in the journal Communications Biology.

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Patrícia Teixeira Lopes is the new non-executive member of the Board of the BIAL Foundation

BIAL Foundation includes, for the mandate 2022-2025, Patrícia Teixeira Lopes as non-executive member of its Board of Directors...

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How do astrocytes regulate the activity of neuronal networks?

João Filipe Oliveira, supported by the BIAL Foundation in the scope of project 37/18 – Decoding the neuron-astrocyte dialogue that supports cognitive processing, concluded that the astrocytes, in addition to contributing to homeostatic control and signal exchange between molecules

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Applications for Prémio BIAL de Medicina Clínica are open until August 31

The 20th edition of the Prémio BIAL de Medicina Clínica, promoted by the BIAL Foundation, with the amount of €100,000, seeks to recognize an intellectual, original work on any freely chosen medical topic on clinical practice. Only work with results of high quality and relevance will be considered. The winning work will also be published as a book.

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BIAL Foundation opens a new call of Grants Programme for Scientific Research

With the aim of encouraging research into the healthy human being, both from the physical and spiritual point of view, BIAL Foundation now opens a new call of its Grants Programme for Scientific Research 2022/2023 in the areas of Psychophysiology and Parapsychology.

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ICBAS and BIAL Foundation promote the Nuno Grande PhD Scholarship 2022

The BIAL Foundation, in partnership with the School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences (ICBAS), is promoting the Nuno Grande PhD Scholarship 2022 in honour of the prestigious medical doctor, researcher and professor who founded ICBAS and was connected to the Foundation for over 20 years.

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What factors contribute to facial identification?

Nicholas Furl, supported by the BIAL Foundation in the scope of project 27/16 – How do brains enconde the distinctive movements of facial expressions, demonstrated the effects of spatial caricatures on the perception of dissimilarity of different facial expressions.

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Could cognition be improved in adulthood?

Ana Teixiera-Santos, supported by the BIAL Foundation in the scope of project 286/16 - Getting the aging brain to train: A working memory and neurstimulation approach, concluded that working memory training, coupled with transcranial direct current stimulation, promotes gains in short-term memory and reasoning in older adults.

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BIAL Foundation celebrates 28th anniversary

Today the BIAL Foundation celebrates 28 years of its mission to foster the scientific study of the human being from both the physical and spiritual perspectives.

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How the brain responds to acoustic dissonance in music?

Juan Toro, supported by the BIAL Foundation in the scope of project 13/18 - Biological bases of music cognition, concluded that our brain presents distintinctive neural responses, affected by schematic and veridical expectations, when processing pure acoustic violations.

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Maria de Sousa Award is accepting applications until May 31

The Portuguese Medical Association and the BIAL Foundation are promoting the second edition of the Maria de Sousa Award, launched in 2020 to honour the memory of the physician and great researcher Maria de Sousa, a victim of Covid-19.

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Science Stories

 

It is our mission being accomplished. Since 1994, the BIAL Foundation has supported 775 projects, involving more than 1600 researchers from 29 countries. There are almost three decades of financial support to Scientific Research Projects oriented towards the neurophysiological and mental study of the human being, in the areas of Psychophysiology and Parapsychology.

Discover the stories behind the science.

Science Stories

Does your dog have social skills?

A study suggests that viewing the owner’s face works as a positive social reinforcement for dogs. Learn more about this and other surprising results about “man’s best friend”.

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Dream and daydream: differences and similarities

Did you know that daydreams reflect events from the previous two days and “night” dreams resemble a fictional plot?

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Choosing the usual or taking a chance?

We always choose the same route back home, but one day, alerted about traffic restrictions, we decide to risk an alternative route. What drives us to make this decision?

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Looking for collaboration

The quest of physiological markers for the experience of pain

Researcher: Elia Valentini - Department of Psychology & Centre for Brain Science, University of Essex Summary: The aim of this project is to improve measurement of the human experience of pain by investigating a combination of psychophysical and physiological responses during mild noxious stimulation. More specifically, we want to investigate how sensitive and specific to pain the brain oscillatory responses are. We use EEG as the main technique, but we are keen to collaborate with neuroscientists using fMRI, autonomic measures and brain stimulation as well as with computational neuroscientists. A clinical collaborator would also be very much welcome.

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EEG investigation of hypnosis and decision-making

Researcher: Rinaldo Livio Perri - University Niccolò Cusano Rome, Italy Summary: I work in the field of hypnosis and cognitive neuroscience. In particular, I adopt the event-related potentials (ERPs) to investigate the effect of the hypnotic suggestions on sensory processing and cognitive performance. I am an expert in decision-making and proactive brain processes before the stimulus administration (e.g., the perceptual, prefrontal and premotor readiness during the expectancy stage). I could help colleagues to properly analyze the ERP signal in the pre-stimulus stage of processing. Also, I would be happy to share my EEG data for re-analyzing them in the frequency domain (e.g., wavelet or coherence analysis in the hypnosis research). Feel free to contact me for any question! More information on my papers: https://scholar.google.it/citations?user=-8e_V64AAAAJ&hl=it Possible collaborations: neuroscientist with experience in the EEG frequency analysis Email: perri.rinaldo@gmail.com

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Transparent Psi Project - looking for collaborators

Summary: We are running a fully transparent, expert consensus-base multilab replication of Bem’s (2011) experiment 1. The project features state of the art methods to maximize transparency and study integrity. The study involves a computerized experiment taking about 20 minutes per session. Group testing is possible in a computer lab, no specialized equipment needed. Labs are expected to recruit at least 100 participants. Participants will be exposed to images with explicit erotic/sexual content in the experiment. No financial compensation is required for the participants. Data collection is expected to take place in the 2020 fall semester. Every material is provided for ethics/IRB submissions and data collection in English (translation of materials might be necessary by the collaborators). The study is pre-registered and the manuscript is accepted in principle for publication in the journal Royal Society Open Science. All collaborators who meet the minimum sample size criterion will get authorship on this paper reporting the results of the replication study. More information in the preprint: https://psyarxiv.com/uwk7y/ Indicate interest in the collaboration via the following form: https://tinyurl.com/tpp-labs With any question contact the lead investigator: Dr. Zoltan Kekecs, kekecs.zoltan@gmail.com

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Cognitive control and learning

Researcher: Ignacio Obeso, Ph.D. / CINAC - HM Puerta del Sur Summary: The aim of our projects is to understand the behavioral and neural mechanisms used to learn how humans establish adaptive behaviour in changing contexts. More specifically, we want to decipher how stopping abilities are initially learned and later executed under automatic control. We use task-related fMRI, brain stimulation and clinical models to test our predictions in laboratory settings as well as online home-based paradigms. Possible collaborations: computational scientist Email contact: i.obesomartin@gmail.com https://iobesomartin.wixsite.com/cognitivecontrol

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Cognitive control and learning (1)

Researcher: Ignacio Obeso, Ph.D. / CINAC - HM Puerta del Sur Summary: The aim of our projects is to understand the behavioral and neural mechanisms used to learn how humans establish adaptive behaviour in changing contexts. More specifically, we want to decipher how stopping abilities are initially learned and later executed under automatic control. We use task-related fMRI, brain stimulation and clinical models to test our predictions in laboratory settings as well as online home-based paradigms. Possible collaborations: computational scientist Email contact: i.obesomartin@gmail.com https://iobesomartin.wixsite.com/cognitivecontrol

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