“It’s a very potent risk factor, so it must have a profound change on the underlying biology of the brain,” she says.
To investigate this, the researchers focused on the amygdala, an almond-sized brain structure whose functions include encoding fearful memories.
The central findings discussed in my 1990 Of particular significance was the finding that infusion of the beta-adrenergic antagonist propranolol into the amygdala blocked the effect of peripherally administered epinephrine.
In addition, and importantly, norepinephrine infused into the amygdala after training enhanced memory, and propranolol infused concurrently blocked the enhancement.
, published in January 1990, included a general article, “Significance and Remembrance: The Role of Neuromodulatory Systems,” written by neurobiologist James L. In that article, Mc Gaugh — who at that time was President of APS — addressed how stress hormones interact with the brain to consolidate memories.
Twenty-five years later, Mc Gaugh, now a research professor at the University of California, Irvine, looks back on how our understanding of memory consolidation has evolved since his article was published. However, it seems unlikely that any current readers either read it or remember it.
Findings of recent experiments continue to strongly support this conclusion (Mc Gaugh, 2013, 2015). Memory-enhancing corticosterone treatment increases amygdala norepinephrine and Arc protein expression in hippocampal synaptic fractions. Mc Gaugh is an APS Past President and a professor at the University of California, Irvine.
The paper’s lead author is former MIT postdoc Michael Baratta.
Strong memories Goosens’ lab has sought for several years to find out why chronic stress is so strongly linked with PTSD.
Once these dendrites are formed, the brain's plasticity allows it to reshape and reorganize the networks of dendrite-neuron connections in response to increased or decreased use of these pathways (Giedd et al., 1999).
Examples of brain plasticity have been noted when people repeatedly practice activities controlled by parts of their visual, motor, sensory, or coordination systems for specialized learned activities.