About Johns Hopkins

Recent news from The Johns Hopkins University

This section contains regularly updated highlights of the news from around The Johns Hopkins University. Links to the complete news reports from the nine schools, the Applied Physics Laboratory and other centers and institutes are to the left, as are links to help news media contact the Johns Hopkins communications offices.


The Surprising Thing Blind People Doing Math Reveals About the Brain

Human babies and even animals have a basic number sense that many believe evolves from seeing the world and trying to quantify all the sights. But vision has nothing to do with it – Johns Hopkins University neuroscientists have found that the brain network behind numerical reasoning is identical in blind and sighted people.

Kill Them With Cuteness: The Adorable Thing Bats Do to Catch Prey

Bats’ use of echolocation to detect, track and catch prey is well documented. But this Johns Hopkins team is the first to show how the relatively mysterious head and ear movements factor into the hunt.

Researchers Find Brain’s ‘Physics Engine’

Whether or not they aced it in high school, human beings are physics masters when it comes to understanding and predicting how objects in the world will behave. A Johns Hopkins University cognitive scientist has found the source of that intuition, the brain’s “physics engine.”

The Brain’s Super-Sensitivity to Curbs

Humans rely on boundaries like walls and curbs for navigation, and Johns Hopkins University researchers have pinpointed the areas of the brain most sensitive to even the tiniest borders.

What Free Will Looks Like in the Brain

Johns Hopkins University researchers are the first to glimpse the human brain making a purely voluntary decision to act.

How a Woman With Amnesia Defies Conventional Wisdom About Memory

Johns Hopkins University cognitive scientists say the sharp contrasts in the memory profile of a patient with severe amnesia — her inability to remember facts about pursuits once vital to her life as an artist, musician and amateur aviator, while clearly remembering facts relevant to performing in these domains — suggest conventional wisdom about how the brain stores knowledge is incorrect.

A Simple Numbers Game Seems to Make Kids Better at Math

Although math skills are considered notoriously hard to improve, Johns Hopkins University researchers boosted kindergarteners’ arithmetic performance simply by exercising their intuitive number sense with a quick computer game.

Researchers Find What Could Be Brain’s Trigger for Binge Behavior

Rats that responded to cues for sugar with the speed and excitement of binge-eaters were less motivated for the treat when certain neurons were suppressed, researchers discovered.

Scientists Find Brain Cells That Know Which End Is Up

People are intuitive physicists — knowing from birth how objects under the influence of gravity are likely to fall, topple or roll. In a new study, scientists have found the brain cells apparently responsible for this innate wisdom.

What You Know Can Affect How You See

Objects — everything from cars, birds and faces to letters of the alphabet — look significantly different to people familiar with them, scientists have found.

Scientists Find Mastering the Art of Ignoring Makes People More Efficient

People searching for something can find it faster if they know what to look for. But new research suggests knowing what not to look for can be just as helpful.

What Bats Reveal About How Humans Focus Attention

You’re at a crowded party, noisy with multiple conversations, music and clinking glasses. But when someone behind you says your name, you hear it and quickly turn in that direction. The same sort of thing happens with bats and Johns Hopkins University researchers have discovered how a bat’s brain determines what’s worth paying attention to. The findings, which have implications across animal systems, were published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

How Your Brain Might be Secretly Thwarting Your New Year’s Resolutions

The human brain is wired to pay attention to previously pleasing things — a finding that could help explain why it’s hard to break bad habits or stick to New Year’s resolutions.

Johns Hopkins Solves a Longtime Puzzle of How We Learn

More than a century ago Pavlov figured out that dogs fed after hearing a bell eventually began to salivate when they heard the ring. A Johns Hopkins University-led research team has now figured out a key aspect of why.

When the Color We See Isn’t the Color We Remember

Though people can distinguish between millions of colors, we have trouble remembering specific shades because our brains tend to store what we’ve seen as one of just a few basic hues, a Johns Hopkins University-led team discovered.

Say What? How the Brain Separates Our Ability to Talk and Write

Although the human ability to write evolved from our ability to speak, in the brain, writing and talking are now such independent systems that someone who can’t write a grammatically correct sentence may be able say it aloud flawlessly, discovered a team led by Johns Hopkins University cognitive scientist Brenda Rapp.

Media Advisory for Science Writers: Neuroscience will be Focus of Johns Hopkins Institute for NanoBioTechnology Symposium

On Friday, May 1, the Johns Hopkins Institute for NanoBioTechnology (INBT) hosts its ninth annual multidisciplinary symposium, featuring six faculty speakers and 100 multidisciplinary research posters. Neuro X is the title and theme for the symposium, which will run from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Owens Auditorium on the Johns Hopkins medical campus.

Element of Surprise Helps Babies Learn

Infants have innate knowledge about the world and when their expectations are defied, they learn best, researchers at Johns Hopkins University found.

Science News Tips from Johns Hopkins

Science news tips for reporters, including a story suggestion from Johns Hopkins Magazine on JHU and ET and another on mistletoe and cancer.

Johns Hopkins University Neuroscientist to Receive Lifetime Achievement Award

 November 17, 2014 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Tracey Reeves Office: 443-997-9903 Cell: 443-986-4053 treeves@jhu.edu Michela Gallagher, a professor of psychology and neuroscience at Johns Hopkins University, doesn’t just study the brain. She mentors young scientists on the importance and rewards of studying it too. Over the course of her career, Gallagher has spent almost as […]

JHU Researchers Make New Discovery About 3-D Shape Processing in the Brain

While previous studies of the brain suggest that processing of objects and places occur in very different locations, a Johns Hopkins University research team has found they are closely related.

JHU Researcher’s Use of Owls Provide Clues on How Humans Might Direct Attention

Imagine a quarterback on the gridiron getting ready to pass the ball to a receiver. Suddenly, in charges a growling linebacker aiming to take him down. At what point does the quarterback abandon the throw and trigger evasive maneuvers?

Johns Hopkins Researcher Finds People Born Blind Perceive Sight Similar to Those With Vision

With the use of verbal stories, a researcher from Johns Hopkins University has found that the brains of people born blind respond to situations similarly to the way people with sight do.

Are You Smarter Than a 5-Year-Old? Preschoolers Can Do Algebra, Psychologists Find

Millions of high school and college algebra students are united in a shared agony over solving for x and y, and for those to whom the answers don’t come easily, it gets worse: Most preschoolers and kindergarteners can do some algebra before even entering a math class.

It’s All Coming Back to Me Now: JHU Researchers Find Caffeine Enhances Memory

For some, it’s the tradition of steeping tealeaves to brew the perfect cup of tea. For others, it’s the morning shuffle to a coffee maker for a hot jolt of java. Then there are those who like their wake up with the kind of snap and a fizz usually found in a carbonated beverage. Regardless of the routine, the consumption of caffeine is the energy boost of choice for millions to wake up or stay up. Now, however, researchers at the Johns Hopkins University have found another use for the stimulant: memory enhancer.