Scientists discovered the neurons that rewrite traumatic memories

Enlightening the processes that underlie the successful treatment of traumatic memories.

Cross section of brain showing the dentate gyrus (
Cross section of brain showing the dentate gyrus ("Gyrus dentatus" at bottom center). Credit: Henry Gray, Anatomy of the Human Body (1918).

Memories of traumatic experiences can prompt psychological wellness issues, for example, post-horrendous pressure issue (PTSD), which can decimate a person’s life.  It is as of now assessed that just about 33% surprisingly will experience the ill effects of fear or stress-related disorders at one point in their lives.

Now, according to a new study by the EPFL researchers, cellular level therapies can treat even long-term memories of trauma. The study enlightens the processes that underlie the successful treatment of traumatic memories.

In the field of treating traumatic memories, there has been a long-debated question of whether fear constriction includes the suppression of the original memory trace of dread by another memory hint of security or the modifying of the first fear trace towards safety. Some portion of the level-headed discussion needs to do with the way that regardless we don’t see precisely how neurons store memories. Despite the fact that they don’t reject suppression, the discoveries from this examination show the significance of revising in treating traumatic memories.

Most of the studies in this sector often focus on understanding the brain’s capacity to reduce traumatic memories, but surprisingly few studies have investigated treatment options for attenuating long-lasting trauma.

Scientists discovered remote fear attenuation in the brain is connected to the activity of the same group of neurons that are also involved in storing these memories. Experimenting with mice, scientists discovered these neurons in the brain’s dentate gyrus, an area of the hippocampus that is involved in the encoding, recall, and the reduction of fear.

Using fear-training exercise that produces long-lasting traumatic memories, scientists found that the subpopulation of neurons in the dentate gyrus that is involved in storing long-term traumatic memories.

After that, when sending those mice for fear-reducing training, scientists found that some of the neurons active at recalling the traumatic memories were still active when the animals no longer showed fear. Essentially, the less the mice were terrified, the more cells progressed toward becoming reactivated. This was a first clue that a similar populace of neurons might be engaged with storing and attenuating traumatic memories.

The analysts at that point lessened the sensitivity of the review neurons amid the exposure therapy and found that the mice demonstrated poorer fear reduction contrasted with controls. Yet, when they diminished the volatility of different neurons in the dentate gyrus, there was no such impact, demonstrating that the recall neurons in the dentate gyrus are essential for fear constriction.

At long last, when the analysts upgraded the sensitivity of these recall neurons amid the therapeutic intervention, they found that the mice demonstrated enhanced fear decrease. In this manner, they inferred that lessening remote dread recollections relies upon the continuous activity of the neurons they recognized in the dentate gyrus.

The study is published in Science.