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New understanding of basic units of memory
Date:9/19/2007

of learning and memory, Ehlers believes that this knowledge could also be helpful in explaining what happens in certain neurological disorders, such as Alzheimers disease, schizophrenia, or learning disorders like autism.

For example, it appears that in animal models of the early phases of Alzheimers disease, often before any symptoms become apparent, the dendritic spines gradually lose their ability to transport and recycle the receptors.

If the receptors dont get recycled, you see a gradual loss of synaptic function that is associated with reduced cognitive ability, Ehlers said. These dendritic spines are where learning and memories reside. These are the basic units of memory.


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Contact: Richard Merritt
Merri006@mc.duke.edu
919-660-1309
Duke University Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

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