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OCD: Scientists identify neural signals linked to the disorder

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For the first time, researchers have identified neural electrical signals related to the Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) in patients diagnosed with the disorder. The study authors, published in the journal Nature Medicine in December 2021, say that the identification of these signs can contribute to the improvement of the technique of Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS), currently used in the treatment of the disorder.

The research was carried out with five adult patients diagnosed with OCD, and three of them were monitored in clinical consultations and while performing daily tasks at their homes. Each of the participants underwent ECP surgery, a technique that uses electrodes to send tiny electrical signals to patients’ brains to regulate neurological activity.

By comparing more than 1,000 hours of collected neural electrical activity records with facial expressions, biometrics and patient reports of noticing OCD symptoms, the researchers were able to identify certain neural patterns that may be related to the disorder.

“Our goal is to understand what these records are showing us and train the device to recognize certain patterns associated with specific symptoms,” Sameer Sheth, an associate professor at the Baylor School of Medicine and one of the study’s collaborators, said in a statement. For him, the better the understanding of these neurological signatures, “the better the chances of us using ECP to effectively treat challenging brain disorders like OCD.”

Improvement in current treatment

Study may contribute to improve current treatment.  (Source: Robina Weermeijer/Unsplash)Study may contribute to improve current treatment. (Source: Robina Weermeijer/Unsplash)Source: unsplash

OCD is a psychological disorder that causes a person to have uncontrollable and recurring thoughts and behaviors. According to the Nature Medicine study, this disorder manifests itself in different ways in each individual and its symptoms can vary over time, making treatment difficult.

Currently, according to the authors, the ECP technique may have benefits in the treatment of OCD as it is able to adjust the intensity of electrical stimuli according to symptoms. However, this adjustment can only be done by a specialist, which ends up delaying this adaptation.

By identifying the neural patterns activated during OCD symptoms, the authors hope to contribute to the development of new ECP devices that are able to recognize symptoms and automatically adjust the intensity of electrical stimuli, without the need to visit a specialist.

In a statement, Wayne Goodman, one of the study’s collaborators and also a professor at the Baylor School of Medicine, says that in addition to contributing to a possible improvement in current treatment, it is expected that the study has been able to improve the understanding of neurological functioning. of OCD, which can help to find treatments that are less invasive than ECP.

ARTICLE Nature Medicine: doi.org/10.1038/s41591-021-01550-z

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Apple Declares 2013 and 2014 iMacs Obsolete and Watch Series 2 Smartwatches ‘Vintage’

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Apple Declares 2013 and 2014 iMacs Obsolete and Watch Series

Apple has added three models of iMacs to its list of obsolete products: a 21.5-inch screen from 2013, a 21.5-inch screen from 2014, and a 27-inch Retina 5K screen also from 2014.

Apple Declares 2013 and 2014 iMacs Obsolete and Watch Series 2 Smartwatches 'Vintage'

Apple typically deprecates products seven years after they were released, so it’s no surprise that the 2013 and 2014 iMacs are on the list.

As for smart watches Apple Watch Series 2, they are recognized as “vintage”. This category usually includes devices that have been released for five years. There may be problems with the official repair of the aforementioned iMacs.

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There are almost 1 billion 5G users. Ericsson report shows that operators often ask for more money for such tariffs.

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There are almost 1 billion 5G users Ericsson report shows

According to a report by Ericsson cited by The Verge, by the end of this year, the number of 5G subscribers in the world will reach 1 billion.

Of course, this is far from the performance of 4G networks, which are now used by about 5 billion people, but still this is a fairly significant part of the market.

There are almost 1 billion 5G users. Ericsson report shows that operators often ask for more money for such tariffs.

Of course, 5G adoption is far from uneven. In North America, about 35% of subscribers will use 5G networks by the end of this year.

At the same time, the report indicates that operators often ask for more money for the higher speeds offered by new networks. Dividing into corresponding tariffs is popular among operators in Western Europe, but overall, 25% of operators worldwide charge extra for 5G. And the average markup is 40%.

Ericsson believes that, unfortunately, this trend will continue for several more years, as operators need to compensate for the costs of developing a new network.

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Is Apple Helping the Chinese Government Fight Protests? The company cut the AirDrop function in the Middle Kingdom

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Is Apple Helping the Chinese Government Fight Protests The company

The history of protests in China is overgrown with new interesting details related to IT companies.

Is Apple Helping the Chinese Government Fight Protests?  The company cut the AirDrop function in the Middle Kingdom

Just weeks before the protests began, Apple reportedly made a major change to how AirDrop works, and only in China. After updating to iOS 16.1.1, AirDrop in the mode of receiving messages from everyone became possible only for 10 minutes, after which AirDrop simply turns off. In normal mode, AirDrop has no time limit, as there is none now and all over the world outside of China.

The fact is that AirDrop is one of the ways protesters communicate, and not only in China. AirDrop works locally in smartphone-to-smartphone mode, without relying on external networks, so it cannot simply be blocked or read data. But in this case, for some reason, Apple decided to seriously change the function, although it did not turn it off completely.

The CNBC resource also notes that the corresponding update was released a month after Chinese President Xi Jinping was re-elected for a third term.

Recall that Huawei smartphones have been noticed that they automatically delete videos that depict events related to protests in China.

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