Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Genes influence memory and sense of orientation

Date:
June 29, 2011
Source:
The Research Council of Norway
Summary:
How do our brains process memory and sense of orientation? Scientists are gaining insight by studying rats with implanted genes that prompt neurons to fire on command.

Professors Edvard and May-Britt Moser head the Centre for the Biology of Memory (CBM) at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) in Trondheim.
Credit: NTNU Info

How do our brains process memory and sense of orientation? Scientists are gaining insight by studying rats with implanted genes that prompt neurons to fire on command.

Related Articles


Researchers at the Centre for the Biology of Memory (CBM) at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) in Trondheim are studying how the human brain carries out its tasks related to memory and spatial orientation.

The knowledge being generated at CBM will also apply to areas of the brain other than those involved in these specific functions.

"The brain uses the same building blocks for a variety of functions, so our findings for memory and sense of orientation will likely apply to the rest of the brain as well," says Professor Edvard Moser. He heads CBM together with Professor May-Britt Moser.

Sensitive to light

The researchers are identifying which types of neurons are found in the brain's centres for memory and sense of orientation, and their respective functions. This is essential information since different types of memories are formed and stored in different neurons and neural pathways.

In order to identify the neurons, the researchers use gene technology and other molecular biological methods. CBM is one of the first research groups in the world to implement a new technique for identifying the functions of specific neurons.

"First we insert a gene for light sensitivity into the neurons we want to study," explains Professor Edvard Moser. "Then when we illuminate the neurons by laser, they send out electrical signals. By recording where these signals originate, we can see precisely where in the centres for memory and sense of orientation those neurons are located."

Complex neural networks

Another technique being adopted at CBM is recording signals from many neurons simultaneously. This will provide valuable information for future studies, since brain functions involve complex networks of neurons.

"Now we can more closely examine how these networks interact," says the professor.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by The Research Council of Norway. The original article was written by Berit Ellingsen/Else Lie. Translation: Darren McKellep/Victoria Coleman. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

The Research Council of Norway. "Genes influence memory and sense of orientation." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 June 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110624111625.htm>.
The Research Council of Norway. (2011, June 29). Genes influence memory and sense of orientation. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110624111625.htm
The Research Council of Norway. "Genes influence memory and sense of orientation." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110624111625.htm (accessed October 31, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Friday, October 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Studying Effects of Music on Dementia Patients

Studying Effects of Music on Dementia Patients

AP (Oct. 30, 2014) The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee is studying the popular Music and Memory program to see if music, which helps improve the mood of Alzheimer's patients, can also reduce the use of prescription drugs for those suffering from dementia. (Oct. 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Techy Tots Are Forefront of London's Baby Show

Techy Tots Are Forefront of London's Baby Show

AP (Oct. 28, 2014) Moms and Dads get a more hands-on approach to parenting with tech-centric products for raising their little ones. (Oct. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cocoa Could Be As Good For Memory As It Is For A Sweet Tooth

Cocoa Could Be As Good For Memory As It Is For A Sweet Tooth

Newsy (Oct. 27, 2014) Researchers have come up with another reason why dark chocolate is good for your health. A substance in the treat can reportedly help with memory. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Five-Year-Olds Learn Coding as Britain Eyes Digital Future

Five-Year-Olds Learn Coding as Britain Eyes Digital Future

AFP (Oct. 27, 2014) Coding has become compulsory for children as young as five in schools across the UK. Making it the first major world economy to overhaul its IT teaching and put programming at its core. Duration: 02:19 Video provided by AFP
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