Navigation Links
Learning keeps brain healthy, UCI researchers find
Date:3/2/2010

Irvine, Calif., March 1, 2010 UC Irvine neurobiologists are providing the first visual evidence that learning promotes brain health and, therefore, that mental stimulation could limit the debilitating effects of aging on memory and the mind.

Using a novel visualization technique they devised to study memory, a research team led by Lulu Chen and Christine Gall found that everyday forms of learning animate neuron receptors that help keep brain cells functioning at optimum levels.

These receptors are activated by a protein called brain-derived neurotrophic factor, which facilitates the growth and differentiation of the connections, or synapses, responsible for communication among neurons. BDNF is key in the formation of memories.

"The findings confirm a critical relationship between learning and brain growth and point to ways we can amplify that relationship through possible future treatments," says Chen, a graduate researcher in anatomy & neurobiology.

Study results appear in the early online edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences for the week of March 1.

In addition to discovering that brain activity sets off BDNF signaling at the sites where neurons develop synapses, researchers determined that this process is linked to learning-related brain rhythms, called theta rhythms, vital to the encoding of new memories.

Theta rhythms occurring in the hippocampus involve numerous neurons firing synchronously at a rate of three to eight times per second. These rhythms have been associated with long-term potentiation, a cellular mechanism underlying learning and memory.

In rodent studies, the team found that both unsupervised learning and artificial application of theta rhythms triggered BDNF signaling at synapse creation sites.

"This relationship has implications for maintaining good brain health," says Gall, a professor of anatomy & neurobiology. "There is evidence that theta rhythms weaken as we age, and our discoveries suggest that this can result in memory impairment. On the other hand, they suggest that staying mentally active as we age can keep neuronal BDNF signaling at a constant rate, which may limit memory and cognitive decline."

Researchers are now exploring whether learning-induced growth signals decrease with age and, if so, whether this can be reversed with a new family of experimental drugs.


'/>"/>

Contact: Tom Vasich
tmvasich@uci.edu
949-824-6455
University of California - Irvine
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. UM School of Medicine finds prenatal cocaine exposure not severely damaging to growth, learning
2. Rapamycin rescues learning, memory in Alzheimers mouse model
3. Word learning in deaf children with cochlear implants
4. A midday nap markedly boosts the brains learning capacity
5. H1N1 learnings: Risk factors for severe outcomes among patients admitted to hospital with H1N1
6. Learning Lab of Brentwood Leads Free ADHD Seminar
7. Silverchair Learning Systems Enhances Product Expertise with New Hires
8. eTeacher Solutes TuBishvat- the “New Year for Trees” by Planting a Tree for Each Student Learning Modern or Biblical Hebrew
9. Six Key Areas of Learning for Pharmaceutical and Healthcare Marketing in 2010
10. Medichest Launches Learning Search
11. Epocrates and RealCME Unite to Deliver Enhanced e-Learning Offerings
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:1/16/2017)... ... January 16, 2017 , ... Permobil has just completed ... of custom seating systems has a well-earned reputation for premium quality, with a ... innovation and growth in the custom seating business, which enjoys strong demand, and ...
(Date:1/16/2017)... CA (PRWEB) , ... January 16, 2017 , ... ... manuscript in the Aesthetic Surgery Journal , the official journal of The ... conducted on lower eyelid retraction surgery. The procedure is designed to correct drooping, ...
(Date:1/16/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... January 16, 2017 , ... NexTec Group ... a group of 100 organizations honored for their accomplishments in the field of midmarket ... growth, industry leadership and recognition, and innovation. Selection is not based on revenue and ...
(Date:1/15/2017)... ... January 15, 2017 , ... "On Tour is a music themed ... and ease," said Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , On ... edit the style and animation of their slideshows. Place each slide on top of ...
(Date:1/14/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Healthy living brand Moody Zook recently came ... With more and more people opting to go organic in their lifestyle, the ... to specific needs. , Moody Zook focused particularly on their newly launched activated ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:1/13/2017)... Stock-Callers is currently reviewing the following Medical Appliances ... WMGI ), Varian Medical Systems Inc. (NYSE: VAR ... NuVasive Inc. (NASDAQ: NUVA ). These companies belong ... finish on Thursday, January 12 th , 2017, with the ... health care companies in the S&P 500 were down less ...
(Date:1/13/2017)... , Jan. 13, 2017  Alfalfa, cattle, leafy greens and ... environmental sampling film , which emphasizes the food industry,s shift ... highlights how COPAN,s Swab Rinse Kit ... the surface sampling process in the wake of the new ... COPAN is expanding the U.S. production ...
(Date:1/13/2017)... 13, 2017 On Thursday, January ... Average, and the S&P 500 edged lower at the ... trading session in bearish territories. Taking into consideration yesterday,s ... this morning: Myriad Genetics Inc. (NASDAQ: MYGN ... Research Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: INCR ), and ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: