Layman's question on the biology of Long-term memory.

mat mats_trash at hotmail.com
Thu Apr 18 04:43:02 EST 2002


> I dont know much about this ... but aftersome thought I would have 
> thought that the protein structure attached to the DNA in the nucleus of 
> our cells would be affected, in that they would store 
> aspects/properties  of our experience. 

I am intrigued about how you got to this conclusion since there is
absolutely no evidence for it and one fails to see how it would occur.
 But I am intrigued about how you got to it.  In fact you are sort of
right since synaptic plasticity does depend on the activation of
genes, which requires activation of transcription factors (proteins
bound to DNA).  But to suggest that memories are stored in the genetic
code is silly.  You might suggest that the change in trasncription
factor activation is a 'store' for memory, but memory emerges at
network levels not single cells.


Memories in DNA seems to be a recurring theme on this and similar
threads, usually espousing some new functions for all that non-coding
DNA we have.  Though it may seem an attractive and elegant mechanism I
would suggest that the best way to discover anything in neuroscience
is to steadily build on what is known and not jump to wild hypotheses.




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