Hardware, of a sort: Mice Memories Selectively Erased
This story was pointed out by a reader with the caveat, “We do our own erasing. Who needs the scientists?” Its so off-topic as to be off-color, and doesnt relate to Memory but to Memories, but its just too interesting to pass up, and humor is important lately (read: financial meltdown, credit default derivatives, etc etc..). Scientists at the Medical College of Georgia in the United States were able to selectively remove a memory from a mouse’s brain. Yes, they have brains: Dont Panic. From the BBC:
Working with mice, the researchers found that a particular protein has a crucial role in the formation of memories. Making the mice over-produce this protein while recalling a specific and painful event caused the memory to be completely eliminated. Dr Joe Tsien, of the Brain and Behaviour Discovery Institute in Georgia said: “First of all I should emphasise the methodology is not applicable to the human clinical situation yet. However, it does suggest molecular paradigms which we can explore to perhaps achieve the same kind of effects in humans – but those are probably years or decades away.”
Maybe, in a couple decades, then, the whole global financial recession, might not have actually happened. To sleep, perchance to dream… But are we sure these mice arent fooling with us? They did pay for the Earth to be built by the Magratheans. And the whole business with the cheese and the squeaking is just a front.