Posts Tagged ‘Memory’

Exactly how memories are stored and accessed in the brain is unclear. Neuroscientists, however, do know that a primitive structure buried in the center of the brain, called the hippocampus, is a pivotal region of memory formation. Here, changes in the strengths of connections between neurons, which are called synapses, are the basis for memory formation. Networks of neurons linking up in the hippocampus are likely to encode specific memories. Since direct tests cannot be performed in the brain, experimental evidence for this process of memory formation is difficult to obtain but mathematical and computational models can provide insight. To this end, Eng Yeow Cheu and co-workers at the A*STAR Institute for Infocomm Research, Singapore, have developed a model that sheds light on the exact synaptic conditions required in memory formation1.

Computational neuroscience: Memory-making is all about the connection – A*STAR Research

Advertisements

What was your high school mascot? Where did you put your keys last night? Who was the first president of the United States? Groups of neurons in your brain are currently sending electromagnetic rhythms through established pathways in order for you to recall the answers to each of these questions. Researchers in Drexel’s School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems are now getting a rare look inside the brain to discover the exact pattern of activity that produces a memory. Dr. Joshua Jacobs, a professor in Drexel’s School of Biomedical Engineering, Science and Health Systems, is analyzing data accumulated from 60 epilepsy patients who have had electrodes implanted on their brains in order to determine the causes of their epileptic episodes. “When performing seizure mapping, surgeons implant electrodes in many brain areas, while searching for seizure activity,” Jacobs said. “Thus, there many electrodes end up being in normal brain tissue, and they measure neuronal activity that reflects normal brain function — this is the function that we’re studying to learn about the nature of working memory.”

Making memories: Drexel researchers explore the anatomy of recollection | e! Science News

Preliminary results are in from a huge online experiment designed to test a flaw in the way the brain stores memories. [VIDEO]

Earlier this year, an online memory experiment was launched on the Guardian blog. They had an extraordinary response. In the three weeks the experiment was live, tens of thousands of people of all ages and from all around the world took part, making it one of the biggest memory experiments ever conducted. Although they only had a couple of weeks to process the responses, here’s a sneak preview of the numbers from a sample of 27,000 participants.

Global Experiment Probes the Deceptions of Human Memory « Neuroscience « WiSci | Life Sciences Blog.

What was the experiment really about?

Among the most surprising discoveries about memory has been the realisation that remembering a past event is not like picking a DVD off the shelf and playing it back. Remembering involves a process of reconstruction. We store assorted features of an event as representations that are distributed around the brain.

In simple terms, visual features are represented near the back of the brain in the areas specialised for visual processing; sounds in auditory processing regions close to the ears; and smells in the olfactory system that lies behind the nose.

To experience the rich, vivid “re-living” of a past event that is remembering, we fit these features together into a representation of what took place.

Posted: October 19, 2012 by Wildcat in Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

read of the day:

Preliminary results are in from a huge online experiment designed to test a flaw in the way the brain stores memories. [VIDEO] Earlier this year, an online memory experiment was launched on the Guardian blog. They had an extraordinary response. In the three weeks the experiment was live, tens of thousands of people of all ages and from all around the world took part, making it one of the biggest memory experiments ever conducted. Although they only had a couple of weeks to process the responses, here’s a sneak preview of the numbers from a sample of 27,000 participants.

What was the experiment really about?

Among the most surprising discoveries about memory has been the realisation that remembering a past event is not like picking a DVD off the shelf and playing it back. Remembering involves a process of reconstruction. We store assorted features of an event as representations that are distributed around the brain.

In simple terms, visual features are represented near the back of the brain in the areas specialised for visual processing; sounds in auditory processing regions close to the ears; and smells in the olfactory system that lies behind the nose.

To experience the rich, vivid “re-living” of a past event that is remembering, we fit these features together into a representation of what took place.

(via Global Experiment Probes the Deceptions of Human Memory « Neuroscience « WiSci | Life Sciences Blog)

Posted: October 16, 2012 by Wildcat in Uncategorized
Tags: , ,

Do you struggle to remember the periodic table of elements, but have no trouble recalling all of the Pokemon? Can’t find that French vocabulary word you crammed on the airplane to Paris, but still remember all the words to “We Didn’t Start the Fire?” The reason we struggle with remembering some things and have trouble forgetting others, some experts say, might not be simply because some things are fun and others are boring. It could be because, paradoxically, we learn better when we’re not concentrating. One 2006 study at the University of California Los Angeles (PDF) showed that “the presence of a demanding secondary task during learning modulates the degree to which subjects solve a problem using either declarative memory or habit learning,” the latter being “associated with automaticity, such that performance does not require effortful attention or working memory.” Distract someone with some other challenge, and you can sneak in learning. (via Know-It-All App Lets You Learn Without Thinking | Game|Life | Wired.com)

Posted: October 9, 2012 by Wildcat in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , ,

Slime moulds use a form of spatial “memory” to navigate, despite not having a brain, a study has found. Scientists in Australia studied the organisms in an experiment normally used to test robots. They found that the slime mould could navigate around a U-shaped maze to a food source, using their slimy deposits. Researchers compare its path-finding method to Hansel and Gretel’s breadcrumb trail. (via BBC Nature – Brainless slime mould has an external memory)

Posted: September 27, 2012 by Wildcat in Uncategorized
Tags: , ,

Chocolate isn’t usually on the diet for snails, but when Lee Fruson and Ken Lukowiak from the University of Calgary, became curious about the effects of diet on memory, they decided to try a flavonoid from chocolate, epicatechin (epi) on the pond snail Lymnaea stagnalis to see if it improved the animals’ memories. After a dose of epi, the pond snails were able to remember a training protocol for longer and the memories were stronger. (via Chocolate makes snails smarter)