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Researchers identify hidden brain signals behind working memory

 2 months ago       17 Views

Making a specific type of brain pattern last longer improves short-term memory in rats, a new study finds.

Published online by the journal Science on June 14, the study addressed “working memory,” the temporary activation of brain cells that happens as we tour a new neighborhood, for instance, and remember our way around later that day.

Led by researchers at NYU School of Medicine, the new study finds that signals created by brain cells (neurons) – called sharp wave ripples – are longer by tens of milliseconds and capture more information when an animal is learning about a new place than when in a familiar setting.

When the research team artificially doubled the length of the signals involved in memory recall of the best route through a maze, rats with extended ripples were found to be 10-15 percent better at finding a sugary reward than rats without the manipulation.

“Our study is the first in our field that made artificial changes to intrinsic neuronal firing patterns in the brain region called the hippocampus that increased the ability to learn, instead of interfering with it like previous attempts,” says György Buzsáki, MD, PhD, the Biggs Professor in the Department of Neuroscience and Physiology at NYU School of Medicine. “After decades of study, we finally understand the mammalian brain well enough to alter some of its mechanisms in ways that may guide the design of future treatments for diseases that affect memory.”


Author: @DailyCupofYoga

Source: neurosciencenews.com

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