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UVA brain ‘mosaic’ named a top discovery of 2013

Groundbreaking brain research at the University of Virginia School of Medicine is part of a prestigious top 10 list from the National Institute of Mental Health.

The research shows that brain cells are not only different from cells in the rest of the body, but they are also different from one another. It is an important step toward understanding and finding the cure for diseases like depression and autism.

The UVA School of Medicine’s Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics found that 41 percent of the neurons they examined in the brain had at least one significant variation from the other neurons in the brain. For example, some of the genes in your brain may just come from one parent—and some from the other.

That may explain why twins may have different emotional issues. The research also explains how one twin may have different ways of thinking from another, even if they look identical.

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