Intracranial self-stimulation is a harmless and easly administrable technique that has shown to be capable of facilitating cognitive brain processes. Several experiments carried out in rats during the last years by our research team have shown that, when administered in a post-training basis, this technique exerts a powerful facilitatory effect on memory consolidation. We have shown that this treatment is specially benefitial for those subjects with an innate low learning capacity, and that it also facilitates memory formation in old animals. We have demostrated that intracranial self-stimulation can facilitate both implicit and explicit memories, as well as memory reconsolidation. Our most recent works have shown that intracranial self-stimulation can even potentiate memory in animals deemed amnestic due to thalamic brain damage. the present project is intended to continue those investigations by studying:1) the effects of chronic adminsitration of intracranial self-stimulation on implicit, explicit and working memories; 2) the possibility that intracranial self-stimulation be even able to revert memory deficits caused by lesions of the amydala, brain structure that has a key role on emotional learning and memory; and 3) the changes in brain activity (c-fos expression) and in the density of postsinaptic receptors (cholinergic, noradrenergic and dopaminergic) induced by intracranial self-stimulation in those brain areas that are critical for memory formation (cortex, amygdala, hippocampus), hich would allow us to formulate hypothesis about the physiological mechanisms involved in the facilitatory effect. Intracranial self-stimulation, besides increasing the cognitive capacities of the subjects, could slow natural (aging) or pathological neurodegeneration, or lessen the cognitive deficits associated to illnesses like Alzheimer's or Parkinson disease
|Effective start/end date||1/12/02 → 1/12/05|
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