Navigation Links
'Smart' mice teach scientists about learning process, brain disorders

Mice genetically engineered to lack a single enzyme in their brains are more adept at learning than their normal cousins, and are quicker to figure out that their environment has changed, a team led by researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center has found.

The results, appearing today in the online edition of the journal Nature Neuroscience, reveal a new mechanism of learning in the brain, which might serve in humans as a target for treating disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder, Alzheimer’s disease or drug addiction, the researchers said.

"It’s pretty rare that you make mice ‘smarter,’ so there are a lot of cognitive implications," said Dr. James Bibb, assistant professor of psychiatry and the study’s senior author.

"Everything is more meaningful to these mice," he said. "The increase in sensitivity to their surroundings seems to have made them smarter."

The engineered mice were more adept at learning to navigate a water maze and remembering that being in a certain box involves a mild shock. Equally important, Dr. Bibb said, when a situtation changed, such as the water maze being rearranged, the engineered mice were much faster to realize that things were different and work out the new route.

Dr. Bibb cautioned that while the mice learn faster, studies on the long-term effects of deleting the enzyme, called Cdk5, from the brain are continuing.

The group is also beginning a search for drugs that might create the same effects without genetic manipulation and monitoring the animals’ health and behavior over time.

The findings may have applications in treating post-traumatic stress disorder, where getting a patient to learn that a once-threatening situation no longer poses a danger is a major goal.

In addition, Cdk5 is heavily implicated in Alzheimer’s disease and addiction to drugs of abuse, so understanding how the enzyme affects the brain and behavior might aid
'"/>

Source:UT Southwestern Medical Center


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Smart nanoprobes light up disease
2. Smart genetic therapy helps the body to heal itself
3. First demonstration of teaching in non-human animals
4. APS lecturer shows rare video of teacher-student immune cell interactions in live animal
5. New book uses ABCs to teach children microbiology
6. Wisconsin scientists grow critical nerve cells
7. UCSB scientists probe sea floor venting to gain understanding of early life on Earth
8. UAB scientists discover the origin of a mysterious physical force
9. Fox Chase Cancer Center scientists identify immune-system mutation
10. Weizmann Institute scientists develop a new approach for directing treatment to metastasized prostate cancer in the bones.
11. U-M scientists find genes that control growth of common skin cancer
Post Your Comments:
(Date:8/12/2015)... 12, 2015   MedNet Solutions , an innovative ... of clinical research, is proud to announce that ... SaaS-based eClinical technology platform, has led the way to ... quarters of 2015.   Q2 2015 and Q1 2015 ... by contract value sold in the company,s 15 year ...
(Date:8/12/2015)... , Aug. 12, 2015  New research ... can attack Android phones to steal users, fingerprints. ... increasing availability of fingerprint scanners on mobile devices, ... concern. To secure biometrics on mobile devices, HYPR ... augment these convenient authentication systems with strong cryptographic ...
(Date:8/11/2015)... Sweden , August 11, 2015 Today, ... FPC1155. Already received as well as expected revenues in 2015 that ... in FPC,s communicated revenue guidance of approximately 2,200 MSEK for 2015. ... is a prominent smartphone manufacturer in ... ZUK selected FPC1 155 for ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):MedNet Solutions Experiences Explosive Corporate Growth 2HYPR Corp. Addresses Android Vulnerability That Exposes Ecosystem-wide Biometric Security Challenges 2HYPR Corp. Addresses Android Vulnerability That Exposes Ecosystem-wide Biometric Security Challenges 3FPC's Touch Fingerprint Sensor FPC1155 in ZUK's Smartphone Z1 2
... agree that vitamin D promotes bone health, but a belief ... causes of death has been a major health controversy. Consistent ... a new study finds that vitamin D did not confer ... health factors such as abdominal obesity. "What we have ...
... Southern California (USC) professor Mary Ann Pentz, Ph.D., shows that ... more likely to drink alcohol in high school than their ... 2011 issue of the journal Alcohol and Alcoholism , ... may benefit from special prevention programs. "As you age, ...
... ALAMOS, New Mexico, October 31, 2011 A National Institutes of ... could help unravel the gnarly secrets of how many human ... the approximately 20,000 genes of the human body have been ... best tools for exposing a gene,s function is to take ...
Cached Biology News:Vitamin D study suggests no mortality benefit for older women 2Underage drinking among close friends high indicator of future alcohol use by black teens 2Antibody library project could unlock mysteries of human gene function 2
(Date:8/27/2015)... ... 2015 , ... Proove Biosciences, a commercial and research ... genetics and hypertension at the International Academy of Cardiology Annual Scientific ... The event, which boasts an extensive overview of the latest research developments in ...
(Date:8/26/2015)... 26, 2015  The Diabetes Research Institute (DRI), ... Miami Miller School of Medicine, announced today that ... test for the first time a novel transplant ... FDA approved Phase I/II study builds upon decades ... an important first step toward the development of ...
(Date:8/26/2015)... After litigating and negotiating patent infringement claims brought ... United States patent RE43,651 (the ,651 patent), ... United States without any admission or concession of ... a result of the parties, settlement, the US District Court ... dismissed the case without prejudice. Under the terms ...
(Date:8/25/2015)... ... August 25, 2015 , ... A ... are cancerous is described by University of Illinois researchers in the Journal ... photonics. , In “ Breast cancer diagnosis using spatial light interference microscopy ,” ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Proove Biosciences Presents Ground-Breaking Data on Genetics and Heart Disease at 20th World Congress on Heart Disease 2Proove Biosciences Presents Ground-Breaking Data on Genetics and Heart Disease at 20th World Congress on Heart Disease 3Diabetes Research Institute Successfully Transplants First Patient In Pilot BioHub Trial 2Diabetes Research Institute Successfully Transplants First Patient In Pilot BioHub Trial 3Diabetes Research Institute Successfully Transplants First Patient In Pilot BioHub Trial 4P2i Settles United States Litigation 2New Optical Method Promises Faster, More Accurate Diagnosis of Breast Cancer 2New Optical Method Promises Faster, More Accurate Diagnosis of Breast Cancer 3New Optical Method Promises Faster, More Accurate Diagnosis of Breast Cancer 4
... N.C., May 5 ASG, Inc., saw continued ... of neighboring Ockham Development Group. The February merger ... expand the breadth and value of services that ... outsourcing and staffing services or the opportunity to ...
... May 5 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ - Neptune Technologies & Bioressources Inc. ("Neptune") ... its product portfolio., Worldwide Sales and Distribution ... marketing team through the hiring of two, ... recognized backgrounds in the nutraceutical ...
... Uveitis, or inflammation within the eye, is a ... loss roughly comparable to that caused by diabetes. ... program in uveitis, the LUMINATE trials sponsored by ... voclosporin oral capsule) to significantly improve this chronic ...
Cached Biology Technology:CRO Acquisition Seen Boosting Activity, Positioning ASG, Inc., for New Growth in Q2 2Neptune Product and Distribution Update 2Neptune Product and Distribution Update 3Neptune Product and Distribution Update 4First oral uveitis drug reduces both inflammation and recurrence in potentially blinding eye disease 2First oral uveitis drug reduces both inflammation and recurrence in potentially blinding eye disease 3First oral uveitis drug reduces both inflammation and recurrence in potentially blinding eye disease 4