Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Molecule Important In Cell Construction Also Critical In Learning And Memory

Date:
March 16, 2005
Source:
Yale University
Summary:
A family of proteins that help build the cytoskeleton, or the bones of the cell, also play an important role in learning and memory, according to a study published this month in The Journal of Neuroscience.

New Haven, Conn. — A family of proteins that help build the cytoskeleton, or the bones of the cell, also play an important role in learning and memory, according to a study published this month in The Journal of Neuroscience.

Related Articles


Marina Picciotto, associate professor of psychiatry, pharmacology and neurobiology at Yale School of Medicine, and the senior author of the study, studied mice missing one of these proteins—–adducin—and found the cytoskeleton developed normally. However, the mice were impaired during fear conditioning and memory exercises.

“We were hoping to find a mechanism that cells use to make short term changes in nerve cell communication permanent, but we were surprised that losing –adducin made such a big change in both the nerve cell communication and in behavioral measures of memory,” Picciotto said.

The focus of the study is long–term potentiation, which is a form of neuronal plasticity and may form the biological basis for some kinds of memory. Long–term potentiation refers to the fact that if two neurons in the hippocampus are active at the same time, the connection between them can be strengthened. This change, or potentiation, can last for hours to days. This may serve to lay a foundation for more permanent changes, such as the construction of new connections, or synapses, between the neurons.

“If you learn to do something new, your neurons have to adapt and change to create a stronger, more direct pathway between neurons,” Picciotto said. “The protein –adducin appears to be important for making those new connections.”

In this study, the mice that did not have the protein were not able to strengthen a synapse in the hippocampus, which is the area of the brain that enables us to remember people, places and things. “If the mice don’t have –adducin, they can’t make a new map,” Picciotto said. “It’s not enough to just have the electrical properties, the skeleton is very important in making long–lasting changes between nerve cells that result in learning.”

Citation: Journal of Neuroscience 25: 2138–2145 (February–2005)


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Yale University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Yale University. "Molecule Important In Cell Construction Also Critical In Learning And Memory." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 March 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/03/050308101838.htm>.
Yale University. (2005, March 16). Molecule Important In Cell Construction Also Critical In Learning And Memory. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 28, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/03/050308101838.htm
Yale University. "Molecule Important In Cell Construction Also Critical In Learning And Memory." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/03/050308101838.htm (accessed March 28, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

AAA: Distracted Driving a Serious Teen Problem

AAA: Distracted Driving a Serious Teen Problem

AP (Mar. 25, 2015) While distracted driving is not a new problem for teens, new research from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety says it&apos;s much more serious than previously thought. (March 25) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smartphone Use Changing Our Brain and Thumb Interaction, Say Researchers

Smartphone Use Changing Our Brain and Thumb Interaction, Say Researchers

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Mar. 25, 2015) European researchers say our smartphone use offers scientists an ideal testing ground for human brain plasticity. Dr Ako Ghosh&apos;s team discovered that the brains and thumbs of smartphone users interact differently from those who use old-fashioned handsets. Jim Drury went to meet him. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Many Don't Know They Have Alzheimer's, But Their Doctors Do

Many Don't Know They Have Alzheimer's, But Their Doctors Do

Newsy (Mar. 24, 2015) According to a new study by the Alzheimer&apos;s Association, more than half of those who have the degenerative brain disease aren&apos;t told by their doctors. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
A Quick 45-Minute Nap Can Improve Your Memory

A Quick 45-Minute Nap Can Improve Your Memory

Newsy (Mar. 23, 2015) Researchers found those who napped for 45 minutes to an hour before being tested on information recalled it five times better than those who didn&apos;t. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins