Memories in Early Alzheimer’s May Not Be Irretrievable After All

Alzheimer’s disease leads to tragic memory deficits, but it’s not clear whether those memories are actually lost. It’s also not clear whether this is a problem with memory formation and storage or a problem in memory retrieval. This is clinically relevant, since memory retrieval could potentially be restored by targeted brain stimulation.

Source: Memories in early Alzheimer’s may not be irretrievable after all

I am curious about the difference between whether the memory is actually being stored and not able to be retrieved later, or not being stored to begin with at all.  It never occurred to me to think about such a nuance.

Individual Neurons Tell Us Whether We Remember Something

It’s hard to pin down exactly what makes us remember things. When you see an image, what makes you decide you’ve seen it before? A new study has tackled this question, identifying a group of neurons that participate in the process of identifying images as familiar.

Source: Individual neurons tell us whether we remember something

What about those who have eidetic memory?  This will have to wait for further study.

Caffeine Could Limit Damage of Chronic Stress

I suddenly feel the need to self-medicate…

During periods of chronic stress, we often up our caffeine consumption. This works better than you might expect—the increase can reduce some of the negative effects of long-term stress, including depression and memory deterioration. In a new study published in PNAS, researchers dug further into this finding, examining the signaling networks that caffeine influences within the brain. One of the proteins they identify is a potential treatment target for the symptoms of long-term stress.

Source: Caffeine could limit damage of chronic stress

Nuff Said

The Mysterious Syndrome In Which Healthy People Can’t Recall Their Past

Psychologists in Canada think they’ve identified an entirely new memory syndrome in healthy people characterised by a specific inability to re-live their past. This may sound like a form of amnesia, but the three individuals currently described have no history of brain damage or illness and have experienced no known recent psychological trauma or disturbance.

Source: Some perfectly healthy people can’t remember their own lives

I remember enough to re-experience a situation, and I knew someone who was a professional ballet dancer – they could as well. I wonder if it is more common in those who are athletic in some fashion? I don’t remember everything – common things like locking the door I forget, to the point I wonder how I got to the car (I will return home to check sometimes, to find it locked). I can’t always control it, and sometimes my recall surprises me – page numbers to stories I might have read once, sheet music after decades.

There is a reason the word “eidetic” exists in our vocabulary, and it doesn’t mean exactly photographic. Hypervigilance would also allow someone to take in enough detail to relive an experience.

I’ve dealt with abusive people, whom it has been my belief will play “dumb” about not remembering an incident. It’s convenient – they don’t remember, so they don’t apologize or care. But the behaviour repeats itself…