Laura Sanders

Laura Sanders

Senior Writer, Neuroscience

Laura Sanders reports on neuroscience for Science News. She wrote Growth Curve, a blog about the science of raising kids, from 2013 to 2019 and continues to write about child development and parenting from time to time. She earned her Ph.D. in molecular biology from the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, where she studied the nerve cells that compel a fruit fly to perform a dazzling mating dance. Convinced that she was missing some exciting science somewhere, Laura turned her eye toward writing about brains in all shapes and forms. She holds undergraduate degrees in creative writing and biology from Vanderbilt University in Nashville, where she was a National Merit Scholar. Growth Curve, her 2012 series on consciousness and her 2013 article on the dearth of psychiatric drugs have received awards recognizing editorial excellence.

All Stories by Laura Sanders

  1. Animals

    Octopus sleep includes a frenzied, colorful, ‘active’ stage

    Four wild cephalopods snoozing in a lab had long stretches of quiet napping followed by brief bursts of REM-like sleep.

  2. Health & Medicine

    Some COVID-19 survivors face another foe: PTSD

    The rate of post-traumatic stress disorder among survivors of severe COVID-19 is comparable to the rate among survivors of some natural disasters.

  3. Neuroscience

    Three visions of the future, inspired by neuroscience’s past and present

    Three fantastical tales of where neuroscience might take us are based on the progress made by brain researchers in the last 100 years.

  4. Science & Society

    Can privacy coexist with technology that reads and changes brain activity?

    An onslaught of new technology aims to listen to — and maybe even change — your brain activity. Readers, scientists and ethicists grapple with the ethical implications of new ways to get inside the skull.

  5. Neuroscience

    Famous brain sketches come to life again as embroideries

    A needlework project pays tribute to the iconic drawings of Spanish neuroscientist Santiago Ramón y Cajal.

  6. Health & Medicine

    Diabetes during pregnancy is tied to heart trouble later in life

    Gestational diabetes may increase a woman’s risk of having hardened arteries later in life, a long-term study finds.

  7. Health & Medicine

    Against all odds, 2020 featured some good health news

    Good health news in 2020 included a first treatment for peanut allergies, a rare self-cure for HIV, and an Ebola outbreak ends.

  8. Neuroscience

    Psilocybin may help treat depression, a small study finds

    Researchers found that a compound in psychedelic mushrooms eased depression symptoms, but larger studies are needed.

  9. Neuroscience

    FDA advisory panel declines to support a controversial Alzheimer’s treatment

    The fate of an Alzheimer’s drug, developed by pharmaceutical company Biogen, remains up in the air.

  10. Anthropology

    These human nerve cell tendrils turned to glass nearly 2,000 years ago

    Part of a young man’s brain was preserved in A.D. 79 by hot ash from Mount Vesuvius’ eruption.

  11. Neuroscience

    Your dog’s brain doesn’t care about your face

    Comparing brain scans of people and pups shows that faces hold no special meaning to the brains of dogs, a new study suggests.

  12. Neuroscience

    Tiny, magnetically controlled robots coax nerve cells to grow connections

    Research using microrobots and nerve cells from rats could point to new treatments for people with nerve injuries.