Estrogen triggers physical changes in rodent brain cells that lead to increased learning and memory, a study has found, supporting the theory that the hormone also enhances brain functioning in humans.

The study, by scientists from Rockefeller University and Weill Medical College of Cornell University, details how neurons in the hippocampus “grow in complexity” when bathed with estrogen.

The growth increases nerve cell connections in the area responsible for storing new memories, retrieving old memories and detailing specific information such as a location or an event.
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