ibusinesslines.com August 19, 2018

Memory Transplant Successfully Done on Snails

15 May 2018, 05:32 | Melissa Porter



Scientists have successfully transferred a memory from one marine snail to another - but there's still a long way to go until you can pay someone to wipe unpleasant memories or implant new ones a la Total Recall, or Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. It's a breakthrough which the biologists believe could one day lead to us being able to delete traumatic memories, or even bring back memories we thought were lost.

Typically when we think of memory, the consensus is that memories are encoded in connections between our brain cells, but neurobiologist David Glanzman is of the opinion that RNA actually holds the key.

The type of RNA relevant to these findings is believed to regulate a variety functions in the cell involved with the development and disease. They used small electric shocks to sea sails called Aplysia californica.

Once the reflex action had been established in the trained snails, they were euthanised and their abdominal ganglia removed.

When the researchers subsequently tapped the snails, they found those that had been given the shocks displayed a defensive contraction lasting about 50 seconds, while those that had not received the shocks contracted for only about one second.

A team of neuroscientists have managed to find a way to transfer memories from one individual to another via injection, but only in snails so far.

The scientists injected the RNA from the sensitized group into seven snails that had not received any shocks. After these shocks were administered. the snail's defensive withdrawal reflex - where the snails contract in order to protect themselves from harm.

Rather than transferring what we think of as a memory, the team transferred something called an RNA or ribonucleic acid.

Next, the researchers added RNA to Petri dishes containing neurons extracted from different snails that did not receive shocks.

The shocked snails had been "sensitised" to the stimulus.

When a marine snail is given electric tail shocks, its sensory neurons become more excitable.

"If memories were stored at synapses, there is no way our experiment would have worked", Glanzman told the BBC. "While the Aplysia is a fantastic model for studying basic neuroscience, we must be very careful in drawing comparisons to human memory processes, which are much more complex".

eNeuro, the Society for Neuroscience's open-access journal launched in 2014, publishes rigorous neuroscience research with double-blind peer review that masks the identity of both the authors and reviewers, minimizing the potential for implicit biases. As a result, researchers used RNA, which is part of the epigenetic modification and part of the process of forming long-term memory.

The research was funded by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, the National Institute of Mental Health and the National Science Foundation.

Other News

Trending Now

Ex-diplomat Thae Yong-ho: North Korea likely to limit denuclearization
Narang said that more likely, Kim and Trump will partake in a photo shoot with handshakes and kind words. Meanwhile, the Chinese regime-North Korea's communist ally-has been eager to exert itself into U.S.

HSBC, ING conduct trade finance transaction using R3's Corda blockchain platform
The transaction marks a tipping point in the way goods are bought and sold, HSBC and ING Bank said in a media release on Monday. Trade experts believe blockchain may be shipping's answer to how it can reduce the time it spends on paper-based processes.

Nokia X6 specs, price leaked: Notch display, Snapdragon 636 and more
Redmi S2 features a 5.99-inch HD+ widescreen display with a screen resolution of 1440 x 720 pixels in an 18:9 screen aspect ratio. The Nokia X6, like the Zenfone Max Pro, will also run close to stock Android OS for an even better performance of the SoC.

HP modifies the design of its premium Envy lineup
A row of Bang and Olufsen-tuned speakers line the front and they're angled up 45 degrees so they hit your ears not your chest. This series is an all-in-one as it includes ample battery life, security, collaboration tools and many more unique features.

How to Watch the 2018 NBA Draft Lottery
Check out Jeremy Woo's Big Board for both rounds of the 2018 National Basketball Association draft here. This actually makes even more sense, as Williams will actually be present for the drawing.

Rain moving in this week and could last through the weekend
Monday , similar to today , will be a cloudy start before we see even more areas seeing the return to sunshine by the afternoon. Temperatures soar today into the low 90s in many spots and we need to watch again for severe weather risks this evening.

Government Forces, Taliban Battling In Farah City In Western Afghanistan
Reinforcements including commando units as well as the Afghan air force were battling Taliban fighters around the city, he said.