Do Neurons Learn By Growing Thorns? Emergence Of Dendritic Spines Is Associated With Long-Term Synaptic Plasticity

Researchers at the Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology, Munich/Germany have discovered that long-term potentiation (a strengthening of synaptic connections that is thought to be the cellular basis for learning and memory) in a hippocampal neuron goes along with morphological changes in specialized microscopic structures, the so-called dendritic spines (Nature, May-6th, 1999). Most neurobiologists believe that memories are encoded in the changing strength of synaptic connections in the brain, that is, in the effectiveness with which one neuron in the brain communicates with another. As the human cerebral cortex contains about 1014 (100 trillion) synapses, a lot of information could be stored.

Understanding how memory works is one of the fundamental problems in neurobiology. Naturally, then, many neurobiologists are concerned with how synaptic strengths are regulated to store information. One problem in particular has been to answer the question whether the functional changes in the strength of synaptic transmission are also correlated with structural changes in neurons as this could "engrave" the information in the brain in a more durable and permanent way than a mere physiological change. An especially attractive candidate for such structural changes is the postsynaptic spine, a tiny protrusion of the dendritic tree that is distinguished by several features: it is the almost exclusive carrier of the postsynaptic sites of excitatory synapses, it covers a neuron in numbers far greater than a thousand and it has so far managed to dodge the efforts of neuroscience to elucidate its function quite effectively.

Florian Engert and Tobias Bonhoeffer at the Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology in Munich have now shown that indeed -- as has long been speculated -- spines do change their morphology when synapses are functionally strengthened.

This advance has been possible through the combination of two new techniques, two-photon laser scanning microscopy

Contact: Tobias Bonhoeffer

Page: 1 2 3

Related medicine news :

1. Neurons so excited that they just cant hide it
2. Neurons that play truth or consequences
3. The mysteries of the emotions: The Good, Bad, and the Learned
4. Learning to cover up reduces risk of skin cancer
5. Learning skills greatly limits stress for family caregivers, says Stanford study
6. Learn and Serve announcement and call for proposals
7. Learning with a digital brain
8. Intensive Program Can Help Premature Babies Learn At the Start
9. UNC-CH Researchers Learning Ways To Help Black Women Cope With HIV
10. Scientists To Prepare Advisory Report On Whats Been Learned About The Possible Adverse Health Effects of Electric Fields
11. Rats Receiving Ginkgo Biloba Learn Quicker, Live 20 Percent Longer Than Controls, UB Study Finds

Post Your Comments:

(Date:7/11/2019)... ... July 11, 2019 , ... Swagelok Southeast Texas, a distributor ... through the acquisition of another Houston-area distributor. The acquisition of the Swagelok Central ... in LaPorte, Nederland and Houston. , With this expansion, Swagelok Southeast Texas ...
(Date:7/10/2019)... ... July 10, 2019 , ... cbdMD, Inc., a nationally recognized ... Jones and Kerri Walsh Jennings have officially joined Team cbdMD. , The partnerships ... awareness to athletes, fans, and consumers around the globe. , American hurdler and ...
(Date:7/9/2019)... ... July 10, 2019 , ... Women’s Excellence is pleased ... This blog covers a variety of topics including women’s health information, current events, ... “We are passionate about women’s healthcare and we’re excited to offer a new women’s ...
(Date:7/9/2019)... ... July 09, 2019 , ... Complete Nutrition , ... its transition from a brick-and-mortar only business toward an e-commerce company. With 15 years ... to meet the growing demands of digital consumers. , As part of the ...
(Date:7/9/2019)... ... , ... Anxiety help can often feel out of reach for many people ... therapy platform called Emote seeks to change this for just the cost ... device, tablet or computer to highly qualified licensed therapists online. Easily download the app ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:7/9/2019)... ... 10, 2019 , ... Women’s Excellence offers BOTOX®, which is approved to ... urgency and frequency in adults when another type of medication (anticholinergic) does not work ... another approach to targeting the source of OAB, the bladder muscle itself. , BOTOX® ...
(Date:7/9/2019)... ... July 10, 2019 , ... ... interactive workshop presented by Cerulean Associates LLC and FDAnews**, Oct. 21-22, 2019, Doubletree ... , Early Bird Savings: Register by Sept. 23 and Save $200 , FDA ...
(Date:7/9/2019)... ... 09, 2019 , ... Laurence Fishburne, the acclaimed actor and ... episode of the program covering integrative medicine, along with innovation within the sector. ... throughout a person’s lifetime. The approach addresses the physical, emotional, mental, social, and ...
Breaking Medicine Technology:
Cached News: