DBS mice (S) spent a greater amount of time (indicated in red) swimming near a submerged landing (dotted circle) compared with non-stimulated mice (NS) indicating improvements in spatial learning (Image: Reprinted with permission: Stone, et al. The Journal of Neuroscience 2011)
With the possible exception of those affected by hyperthylmesia – a rare condition where a person has an extraordinary capability to recall events from their past - most of us wouldn’t mind having our memory enhanced. That’s just what appears to have happened to a group of mice when targeted areas of their brains were electrically stimulated. The treatment triggered an increase in the creation of new cells in the hippocampus, with experiment results suggesting the mice’s spatial learning improved. The researchers responsible say the results could have implications for the treatment of memory disorders in humans.