You wonder if it has to do with the creativity that allows humans to envision possible events and combinations of real and imagined events in great detail. That rich internal experience fuels work in the arts and sciences and other creative activities, Dr. Tonegawa said. “Unless you have that kind of ability, there is no civilization,” he said. But it could also provide a lot of raw material for false memories. Perhaps he said, our faulty memories represent “a tradeoff for this tremendous benefit.” — James Gorman

 

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http://www.realmeaningofdreams.com/dream-art.html

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http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/26/science/false-memory-planted-in-a-mouse-brain-study-shows.html?_r=0&adxnnl=1&partner=rss&emc=rss&adxnnlx=1374779125-ho71htd2DzrwBVDakevOgw

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“What I find fascinating about this,” Dr. Moser said, “is that you actually can point to a physical substrate to memory,” what the researchers call an engram. Neuroscientists have long talked about engrams, but Dr. Moser said the research this year and last is the closest they have gotten to pointing to a spot in the brain and saying, “That is the memory.”

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The tools of optogenetics, which are transforming neuroscience, were used to locateand chemically label neurons as well as make them susceptible to activation by blue light transmitted by a fiber optic cable in the mouse brain. With these techniques the researchers were able to identify and chemically label which neurons were involved in forming the initial memory of the first environment, and to reactivate the labeled cells a day later with light.

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Dr. Tonegawa said that because the mechanisms of memory formation are almost certainly similar in mice and humans, part of the importance of the research is “to make people realize even more than before how unreliable human memory is,” particularly in criminal cases when so much is at stake.

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That unreliability, he said, prompts a question about evolution: “Why is our brain made in such a way that we form false memories?”

 

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One Response to You wonder if it has to do with the creativity that allows humans to envision possible events and combinations of real and imagined events in great detail. That rich internal experience fuels work in the arts and sciences and other creative activities, Dr. Tonegawa said. “Unless you have that kind of ability, there is no civilization,” he said. But it could also provide a lot of raw material for false memories. Perhaps he said, our faulty memories represent “a tradeoff for this tremendous benefit.” — James Gorman

  1. Pingback: The link between madness and creativity | Curtis Narimatsu

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