About My Health Careers Internship MedBlogs Contact us

Memory Storing Process More Intricate Than Thought

by VR Sreeraman on August 18, 2007 at 5:29 PM
Font : A-A+

Memory Storing Process More Intricate Than Thought

A new study has found that the process of storing long-term memories in our brains is much more dynamic than suggested.

Prof. Yadin Dudai, Head of the Weizmann Institute's Neurobiology Department, and his colleagues discovered that the memory storing process involves a miniature molecular machine that runs constantly to keep memories going. The team, which also found that jamming the machine briefly can erase long-term memories, suggests that their findings may pave the way to future treatments for memory problems.


Prof. Dudai said that their study challenges the idea that long-term memories stabilize after maturing from short-term memories.

In the study, the U.S. and Israeli researchers fed the rats with saccharine, which made them sick and taught them to associate the taste with feeling unwell.

They then injected an enzyme inhibitor called ZIP into the rats' brains that blocked a protein, PKMzeta, which controls the flow of information involving memory between brain cells.

After the injection, the rats did not remember the association with saccharine, no matter how long the researchers had trained them to do so, said Dudai, a researcher at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel.

This suggests a key mechanism in the brain works like a piece of machinery to store long-term memory, Dudai said. Once the machinery stops, memory shuts down.

The technique worked as successfully a month after the memories were formed (in terms of life span, more or less analogous to years in humans) and all signs so far indicate that the affected unpleasant memories of the taste had indeed disappeared. This is the first time that memories in the brain were shown to be capable of erasure so long after their formation.

"This drug is a molecular version of jamming the operation of the machine. When the machine stops, the memories stop as well. This research is important because it casts light on the mechanisms of memory. It also shows that long-term memory is not a permanent change and can be edited," Dudai said.

In other words, long-term memory is not a one-time inscription on the nerve network, but an ongoing process which the brain must continuously fuel and maintain. These findings raise the possibility of developing future, drug-based approaches for boosting and stabilizing memory.

The findings of the study are published in the journal Science.

Source: ANI

News A-Z
News Category
What's New on Medindia
International Day of Persons with Disabilities 2021 - Fighting for Rights in the Post-COVID Era
Effect of Blood Group Type on COVID-19 Risk and Severity
Woman with Rare Spinal Cord Defect from Birth Sues Doctor
View all

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Brain Exercises to Improve Memory Foods to Improve Memory Power Ways to Improve your Intelligence Quotient (IQ) Quick and Easy Ways to Memorize Things 7 Ways How Writing by Hand Improves Brain Power 

Recommended Reading
Understanding ‘Memory’
Yoga is an ancient Hindu discipline. The goal of Yoga is union with the higher consciousness...
Coffee Improves Memory in Older Women
Drinking coffee really does have its benefits if you're a woman, and over the age of 65, for it ......
7 Ways How Writing by Hand Improves Brain Power
Do you want to sharpen the way your brain works? Try writing by hand to sharpen your mind and increa...
Brain Exercises to Improve Memory
An active brain can certainly help in improving memory by strengthening the connections between neur...
Foods to Improve Memory Power
Eating healthy nutritious foods can help improve memory power and prevent brain-related illness. Eat...
Quick and Easy Ways to Memorize Things
You can train your brain to memorize things faster. If you’re thinking about how to train the brain,...
Ways to Improve your Intelligence Quotient (IQ)
Intelligence quotient (IQ) is a psychological measure of human intelligence. Regular physical and me...

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2021

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use