Scientists discover how to implant false memories

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Implanting false memories could cure Alzheimer’s, PTSD, and depression. It could also make scapegoating easier, allow for witness tampering, or give those under a brutal dictatorship false patriotism.

MIT researchers Steve Ramirez and Xu Liu recently made history when they successfully implanted a false memory into the mind of a mouse. The proof was a simple reaction from the rodent, but the implications are vast. They placed the furry little creature inside a metal box, and it froze, displaying a distinct fear response. The mouse was reacting as if it had received an electrical shock there, when it hadn’t at all.

What makes it more riveting is that their success was considered a long-shot. The hypothesis was that not only could they identify those neurons associated with encoding memory, but could essentially rewrite one. Experts say that this an impressive feat which helps uncover more of the mystery of how memory operates. Though neuroscientists have considered such a possibility for years, they never thought this kind of experiment could actually work.

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You will be a different person by the time you reach the end of this article

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Futurist Thomas Frey: Whatever happened to that young child you were not so many years ago?

As a baby, life was all about eating, sleeping, and dry diapers. Even though you are learning new things quickly, not much else really mattered.

 

 

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How our brains put the present in the past by rewriting our memories

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Our brains edit our memories with new information by updating our past memories.

Try thinking about your fifth birthday when your mom was carrying the cake. Can you remember what her face looked like? You are not alone if you have a hard time imagining the way she looked then rather than how she looks now.

 

 

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Scientists discover a way to erase bad memories

Researchers have already learned how to erase memories of fear, as well as how to plant false memories.

What if you could walk into a clinic, just like in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, and have your bad memories erased? It might sound fantastical, but scientists at the Scripps Research Institute have successfully done something similar in mice.

 

 

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Scientists successfully implant false memories into mice

Mice implanted with false memories.

U.S. and Japan memory researchers have, for the first time, implanted false memories into a lab animal. The researchers made mice believe that they had once received electrical shocks in their feet while sitting in a certain little chamber, even though that had never happened. Thereafter, whenever the researchers put the mice in that chamber, the mice would freeze up in a typical mouse response to fear.

 

 

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Smells can trigger powerful emotional memories: study

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The “Proustian phenomenon” proposes that distinctive smells have more power than any other sense to help us recall distant memories.

A new study shows smells can transport us back to powerful and emotional memories from the past more effectively than sounds, supporting a theory by Marcel Proust.

First memories may happen as young as age 2: study

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“Most of us can’t recall anything about infancy, it’s only at about 3- or 4-years of age we can start to remember.”

A majority of adults suffer from childhood amnesia.  They are unable to remember infancy or toddlerhood. That’s what scientists thought. But a new study indicates that even six years after the fact, a small percentage of tots as young as 2 can recall a unique event .

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