‘ANXIETY CELLS’ DISCOVERED IN THE BRAINS OF MICE (Their findings could help people all over the world who suffer from anxiety)

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Scientists have discovered “anxiety cells” in the brains of mice, with their findings having the potential to drastically benefit people who suffer from anxiety in future.

A team of researchers, including some from Columbia University and the University of California, carried out an experiment with mice to determine how anxiety affects the brain.

Mazen Kheirbeck, co-author of the study and assistant professor at the University of California, explained how they went about assessing the mental state of their subjects.

Scientists have discovered “anxiety cells” in the brains of mice, with their findings having the potential to drastically benefit people who suffer from anxiety in future.

A team of researchers, including some from Columbia University and the University of California, carried out an experiment with mice to determine how anxiety affects the brain.

Mazen Kheirbeck, co-author of the study and assistant professor at the University of California, explained how they went about assessing the mental state of their subjects.

The team decided to try altering the activity of these so-called “anxiety cells” to see if it would help to pacify the mice.

They used a biological technique called optogenetics, which involves using light to control cells in living tissue.

When they reduced the level of activity in the cells, the mice became less anxious and more willing to wander the open spaces of the maze.

When the level of the activity was increased, the mice became visibly more anxious.

Joshua Gordon, the director of the National Institute of Mental Health, believes this discovery is a positive inclination of what the future may hold for the treatment of human beings who struggle with anxiety.

“If we can learn enough, we can develop the tools to turn on and off the key players that regulate anxiety in people,” he said.

According to the Mental Health Foundation, 7.8 per cent of people in Britain suffer from mixed anxiety and depression

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