Navigation Links
What emotional memories are made of
Date:10/4/2007

Both extensive psychological research and personal experiences confirm that events that happen during heightened states of emotion such as fear, anger and joy are far more memorable than less dramatic occurrences. In a report this week in Cell, Johns Hopkins researchers and their collaborators at Cold Spring Harbor and New York University have identified the likely biological basis for this: a hormone released during emotional arousal primes nerve cells to remember events by increasing their chemical sensitivity at sites where nerves rewire to form new memory circuits.

Describing the brain as a big circuit board in which each new experience creates a new circuit, Hopkins neuroscience professor Richard Huganir, Ph.D. says that he and his team found that during emotional peaks, the hormone norepinephrine dramatically sensitizes synapses the site where nerve cells make an electro-chemical connection to enhance the sculpting of a memory into the big board.

Norepinephrine, more widely known as a fight or flight hormone, energizes the process by adding phosphate molecules to a nerve cell receptor called GluR1. The phosphates help guide the receptors to insert themselves adjacent to a synapse. Now when the brain needs to form a memory, the nerves have plenty of available receptors to quickly adjust the strength of the connection and lock that memory into place, Huganir says.

Huganir and his team suspected that GluR1might be a target of norepinephrine since disruptions in this receptor cause spatial memory defects in mice. They tested the idea by either injecting healthy mice with adrenaline or exposing them to fox urine, both of which increase norepinephrine levels in brain. Analyzing brain slices of the mice, the researchers saw increased phosphates on the GluR1 receptors and an increased ability of these receptors to be recruited to synapses.

When the researchers put mice in a cage, gave a mild shock, took them out of that cage and put them back in it the next day, mice who had received adrenaline or fox urine tended to freeze in fear an indicator they associated the cage as the site of a shock more frequently, suggestive of enhanced memory.

However, in a similar experiment with mice genetically engineered to have a defective GluR1 receptor that phosphates cannot attach to, adrenaline injections had no effect on mouse memory, further evidence of the priming effect of the receptor in response to norepinephrine.

The researchers plan on continuing their work by going in the opposite direction and engineering another mouse strain that has a permanently phosphorylated or primed receptor. Were curious to see how these mice will behave, Huganir says. We suspect that theyll be pretty smart, but at the same time constantly anxious.


'/>"/>

Contact: Nick Zagorski
nzagors1@jhmi.edu
443-287-2251
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Test-tube babies show no emotional problems
2. Emotional trigger to smoke
3. Emotional callers hamper speedy ambulance dispatch
4. Emotional intelligence in Cancer
5. MRI Shows Emotional Changes During Menstrual Cycle
6. ‘Marriage Squabbles’ bad for both Emotional and Physical Wound
7. You Can Be Emotional And Logical
8. Breast Cancer Survivors Emotional Recovery Is Rapid After Treatment
9. Do not get unduly stressed or emotional as it may affect the heart!
10. Parental Conflicts Lead To Emotional Insecurity In Children
11. Job Or Emotional Stress Can Increase Risk Of Heart Attack
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/24/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... March 24, 2017 , ... The ... Quest Awards . The annual awards, now in their 12th year, are among ... selects the winners. , In 2016, the awards were retooled to recognize achievements in ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... ... March 24, 2017 , ... Mlynarek Insurance Agencies, a Detroit ... business owners across eastern Michigan, is connecting with the Oxford/Orion FISH Food Pantry ... , The Oxford/Orion FISH Food Pantry works to ensure homeless, hungry, and underprivileged ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... ... March 24, 2017 , ... Northridge dentists, Dr. ... for sleep apnea and TMJ at their office. TMJ, or temporomandibular joint disorder, ... obstructive type, is increasingly being treated at dental offices with newly developed procedures ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... ... March 24, 2017 , ... Gastro Health (“GH”) ( ... patients for colonoscopy at the HyGIeaCare® Center that is to be located adjacent ... , The HyGIeaCare® Prep, cleared by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... ... March 24, 2017 , ... “End Time GPS”: a dauntless and ... “End Time GPS” is the creation of published author, Wesley Gerboth, a World ... military munitions and space-vehicle projects. Now, at age ninety-one, he shares the Wisdom God ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:3/24/2017)... YORK and GENEVA , ... announced on World Tuberculosis Day revitalizes efforts to develop ... On World Tuberculosis Day, TB Alliance and ... for the clinical development of sutezolid, an antibiotic drug ... sublicense pertains to the development of sutezolid in combination ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... MOBILE, Ala. , March 23, 2017 Mosaic Life Care, based in ... automate the patient registration process across its network of 58 clinics, located in 22 ... constantly seeking new and innovative ways to improve the delivery of health care to ... Continue Reading ... Mosaic Life Care St. Joseph ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... 2017  Transportation Insight, a multi-modal lead logistics solutions ... management firm with expertise serving clients in the food ... Zaffarano was named a 2017 Food Logistics ... the only publication exclusively dedicated to covering the movement ... "Rick has brought to Transportation Insight a wealth ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: