Neuroscientists reverse memories’ emotional associations

August 28, 2014 1:07 PM

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Neuroscientists reverse memories’ emotional associations

A new study from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) neuroscientists reveals the brain circuit that controls how memories become linked with positive or negative emotions. Furthermore, the researchers found that they could reverse the emotional association of specific memories by manipulating brain cells with optogenetics—a technique that uses light to control neuron activity.

The findings, described in Nature, demonstrated that a neuronal circuit connecting the hippocampus and the amygdala plays a critical role in associating emotion with memory. This circuit could offer a target for new drugs to help treat conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder, the researche...

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