Features

How Manipulating Rodent Memories Can Elucidate Neurological Function
How Manipulating Rodent Memories Can Elucidate Neurological Function
Amber Dance | May 1, 2020
Strategies to make lab animals forget, remember, or experience false recollections probe how memory works, and may inspire treatments for neurological diseases.
How Time Is Encoded in Memories
How Time Is Encoded in Memories
Catherine Offord | May 1, 2020
Rats and equations help researchers develop a theory of how our brains keep track of when events took place.
What Do New Neurons in the Brains of Adults Actually Do?
What Do New Neurons in the Brains of Adults Actually Do?
Ashley Yeager | May 1, 2020
Adult neurogenesis, already appreciated for its role in learning and memory, also participates in mental health and possibly even attention, new research suggests.

Contributors

Contributors
Contributors
Contributors
Meet some of the people featured in the May 2020 issue of The Scientist.

Editorial

Memory in a Time of Quarantine
Memory in a Time of Quarantine
Memory in a Time of Quarantine
How will humanity record the unprecedented predicament we find ourselves in?

Speaking of Science

Ten Minute Sabbatical
Ten Minute Sabbatical
Ten Minute Sabbatical
Take a break from the bench to puzzle and peruse.

Critic at Large

Is Modern Media Destroying Our Memories?
Is Modern Media Destroying Our Memories?
Is Modern Media Destroying Our Memories?
It seems as though the more we embrace external technologies, the more our memory faculties deteriorate. But the truth might just be scarier.

Notebook

Study Probes Brain Activity in Survivors of Paris Terror Attacks
Study Probes Brain Activity in Survivors of Paris Terror Attacks
Study Probes Brain Activity in Survivors of Paris Terror Attacks
Those who had developed PTSD appear to be less able to suppress unwanted memories—traumatic or not—suggesting a role for the general ability to control memory recall in the disorder.
Cannabis Increases Propensity for False Memories
Cannabis Increases Propensity for False Memories
Cannabis Increases Propensity for False Memories
Virtual reality experiments reveal that the popular drug may make the brain more open to misremembering.
Can Zapping the Brain Boost Memory?
Can Zapping the Brain Boost Memory?
Can Zapping the Brain Boost Memory?
The California-based company Humm has developed a “bioelectric memory patch” to improve working memory, but some experts question the efficacy of the device.
How Immune Cells Make the Brain Forget
How Immune Cells Make the Brain Forget
How Immune Cells Make the Brain Forget
Microglia ingest nerve cell connections, leading to the loss of information stored in neuronal circuits.

Modus Operandi

Wrist-Mounted Air Pollution Detector
Wrist-Mounted Air Pollution Detector
Wrist-Mounted Air Pollution Detector
A novel sampler records data on a broad range of environmental contaminants.

The Literature

Once Is Enough For Long-Term Memory Formation in Bees
Once Is Enough For Long-Term Memory Formation in Bees
Once Is Enough For Long-Term Memory Formation in Bees
Honeybees can remember reward-associated odors three days after a single learning experience.
Light Enables Long-Term Memory Maintenance in Fruit Flies
Light Enables Long-Term Memory Maintenance in Fruit Flies
Light Enables Long-Term Memory Maintenance in Fruit Flies
Under constant darkness, Drosophila’s ability to form lasting memories is impaired.
How Mice Forget to Be Afraid
How Mice Forget to Be Afraid
How Mice Forget to Be Afraid
The animals develop a new memory that overrides the fearful one by inhibiting the cells that encode the original memory.

Profile

Unravelling Memory’s Mysteries: A Profile of Elizabeth Buffalo
Unravelling Memory’s Mysteries: A Profile of Elizabeth Buffalo
Unravelling Memory’s Mysteries: A Profile of Elizabeth Buffalo
Studying nonhuman primates, the University of Washington neuroscientist has identified important features of the neural underpinnings of learning and memory.

Scientist to Watch

Daniel Colón-Ramos Reveals the Mysteries of Worms’ Memories
Daniel Colón-Ramos Reveals the Mysteries of Worms’ Memories
Daniel Colón-Ramos Reveals the Mysteries of Worms’ Memories
The Yale neuroscientist seeks to understand the brain’s architecture and function using C. elegans.

Bio Business

Early Detection of Dementia with Smart Devices
Early Detection of Dementia with Smart Devices
Early Detection of Dementia with Smart Devices
Digital biomarkers of cognitive decline could alert us to the early stages of dementia before irreversible damage occurs.

Reading Frames

Where Do Our Memories Live?
Where Do Our Memories Live?
Where Do Our Memories Live?
A new book explores research through the ages that has tried to map the intricacies of the human brain, including pinpointing the seat of memory.

Foundations

Savant in the Limelight, 1988–2009
Savant in the Limelight, 1988–2009
Savant in the Limelight, 1988–2009
Kim Peek, the inspiration for the title character in Rain Man, brought public attention to savant syndrome.

Infographics

Infographic: Messing with a Mouse’s Memory
Infographic: Messing with a Mouse’s Memory
Infographic: Messing with a Mouse’s Memory
Researchers have developed ways to manipulate neurons involved in a particular memory to make mice recall an experience or to remember something that never happened.
Infographic: How the Brain Keeps Track of Time in Memories
Infographic: How the Brain Keeps Track of Time in Memories
Infographic: How the Brain Keeps Track of Time in Memories
Signals from the lateral entorhinal cortex help create “time cells” in the hippocampus, according to some researchers.
Infographic: How Adult-Born Neurons Integrate into the Brain
Infographic: How Adult-Born Neurons Integrate into the Brain
Infographic: How Adult-Born Neurons Integrate into the Brain
Cutting-edge microscopy is revealing how new neurons made in adult mice’s brains tap into existing neuronal connections.
Infographic: Fashionable Detector
Infographic: Fashionable Detector
Infographic: Fashionable Detector
Researchers set out to make an air pollution detector study subjects would want to wear.
Infographic: Quick Learners
Infographic: Quick Learners
Infographic: Quick Learners
Honeybees can remember reward-associated odors three days after a single learning experience.