Navigation Links
Task Learning Made Simple By Taking Short Breaks

While attempting to learn a new task, taking short breaks can go a long way in making it sound simple and easy, according to a new study conducted by Massachusetts Institute researchers. //

Scientists David Foster and Matthew Wilson, working at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, found that rats' brains 'replay' their experiences in reverse when the animals pause briefly to rest.

They suggest that eliminating such breaks could actually interfere with learning, and perhaps even explain why hyperactive children often have learning difficulties, reported the online edition of Nature.

The researchers inserted a pincushion of fine wires into the animals' skulls and monitored the electrical activity of around 100 individual brain cells in the hippocampus, a brain region involved in learning and memory.

They placed each wired-up rat in a straight 1.5-metre run. They recorded brain-cell activity as the rats scurried up and down, pausing at each end to eat, groom and scratch their whiskers.

As the rats ran along the track, the nerve cells fired in a very specific sequence. This is not surprising, because certain cells in this region are known to be triggered when an animal passes through a particular spot in a space.

But researchers were taken aback by what they saw when the rats were resting. Then, the same brain cells replayed the sequence of electrical firing over and over, but in reverse and speeded up.

"It's absolutely original; no one has ever seen this before at all," says Edvard Moser, who studies memory at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim.

This instant replay could help the animals to learn about a recent place and what parts of it are most important, the investigators propose. The re-run could coincide with a burst of the reward chemical dopamine, which is released in the brain when the animal finds food.

By playing the pattern of activity backwards, those brain cells nearest the food fire first and at the same time as the dopamine signal. The idea is that this might etch the position of the food into the rats' brains. "It's saying, 'this is the place I want to be'," says Foster.

If this idea proves true in people, it could have many implications for human learning. It suggests that those idle times, perhaps spent gazing into space, are actually crucial for our brains to replay, and learn from, recent experiences.

--Edited IANS
'"/>




Related medicine news :

1. Habit Memory May Enhance Learning In People
2. Learning Just How Different We Are
3. Learning process to be regulated by altering brain protein
4. Better Research Rats To Help In Learning About Hypertension
5. Math Learning Disorder Higher in Boys
6. Math Learning Disorder Higher In Boys
7. Boys Suffer More Mathematics Learning Disorder Than Girls
8. Learning About Healthy Diet Choices Begins At Schools
9. Novel Treatment to Cure People with Learning Disabilities
10. Learning the Value of Prevention and Treatment in Oral Clefting
11. Study Shows Tomosyn Plays an Important Role in Learning and Memory
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:1/16/2017)... OR (PRWEB) , ... January 16, 2017 , ... ... author, editor, attorney, science teacher, http://www.ageofautism.com/legal , Sharon Kleyne, America’s leading ... Kent Heckenlively to her nationally syndicated radio program, The Sharon Kleyne Hour Power ...
(Date:1/16/2017)... IL (PRWEB) , ... January 16, 2017 , ... ... (iaedp) organized to provide first-quality education and high-level training standards to an international ... spectrum of eating disorder problems. As a way to further its mission at ...
(Date:1/16/2017)... ... January 16, 2017 , ... San Francisco dentist, Dr. ... the latest in 3-D scanning device which is capable of taking digital impressions of ... in dentistry, such as CAD CAM restorations , in terms of speed, efficiency ...
(Date:1/16/2017)... , ... January 16, 2017 , ... NexTec Group has ... group of 100 organizations honored for their accomplishments in the field of midmarket financial ... industry leadership and recognition, and innovation. Selection is not based on revenue and those ...
(Date:1/15/2017)... CINCINNATI, Ohio (PRWEB) , ... January 15, 2017 ... ... their applications, Gensuite’s Community Outreach is a program that strives to better communities ... in each global locations’ community. It also provides the opportunity for team members ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:1/14/2017)... , Jan. 14, 2017  Johnson & Weaver, LLP ... of purchasers of Zimmer Biomet Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: ... through October 31, 2016 (the "Class Period"). Zimmer ... and markets orthopaedic reconstructive products, such as knee and hip ... ...
(Date:1/13/2017)... , January 13, 2017 Constant research ... AIDS will collectively contribute to the demand for western blotting ... a value of US$ 551.0 Mn by 2016 end. Developing ... the most lucrative markets for western blotting, whereas ... globally. ...
(Date:1/13/2017)... YORK , January 13, 2017 ... equities to see how they have fared at yesterday,s ... ), Galena Biopharma Inc. (NASDAQ: GALE ), ... These companies harness cellular and biomolecular processes to develop ... reduce our environmental footprint, feed the hungry, use less ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: