How does memory work?

Definitions of 5 vocabulary terms

Memory: The process of our brain maintaining the information over time.

Neurons: Cells that transmit nerve impulses in the brain

Neurotransmitters: Chemicals that send signals from one nerve cell to another.

Long-term potentiation (LTP): The ability of brain cells to increase the strength between brain cell connections.

Synapses: A small gap of the neuron that carries the signal to the next neron.

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The functions of a memory isn’t just about experiencing a event in life, make it into a memory and store inside the brain. Neurons communicate with other neurons when they recieve stimulation from same neurotransmitters and the strength of the connections is what tells us about how a memory works. It is said by William Griffith, Ph.D., a cellular neuroscientist and chair of the Department of Neuroscience and Experimental Therapeutics at the Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine, that LTP, long-term potentiation explains memory a lot since it changes the strength of brain cell connections. If your brain has made a ‘strengthened synaptic contact’ and nerve cells transmitted signal to one another, then a momeory is made. To remember memories is by maintaing the LTP. When your losing strength in your LTP synaptic connections, this could cause cognitive loss and impairment. The decrease in neurons communicating to each other makes the connections weak, which makes it harder to recall memories. Memories can be thought back when you look or smell something as it relates to an event in a past. Behaviours such as addiction can be associated with memory as well because the pathways for addiction are strengthened. But there is more to be researched on how the brain generates, consolidates and retrieves memories.



Nature VS Nurture

The nature vs nurture is a debate on if the behaviours of a person is inherited or learned through the environment and life. I think that nature is what comes from your older generations and what is passed on to you.

As an example from BBC’s research, if you are born from both parents that was an olympic gold medalist runner many times, you might as well be fast having the genes passed on. But nurture comes in and also changes how fast you are. Good athletes train and train to extend their possibilities to get better and environments effect this a lot. there are countries like Kenya and Ethiopia, where there is plenty of high land and you become adapted to that enviornment. This passes on to the next generation and they get better too. Using Eugenics in sports is a big idea of making stronger and powerful people in certain sports.

Another example is a study of twins done by the ‘Lousville Twin Study’. Twins are born at the same time and can look simlilar meaning they are identical. These identical twins can though be different because one gets more nutritions during the reproduction process. But the intelligence and behaviours are within you already, although if you don’t study and the other studies for the whole time, then that’s different. People like Mozart had the smart genes since when he was born and he developed it as he grown.

Research by Cambridge study was to see how people act to adults and gender and if they are stereotypic. When an adult sees a baby girl with a boy’s clothes, they intend to give them a boy’s type of toy. And this is pretty stereotypic as people already think as boy’s should have a truck toy to play and girls with dolls. That image passes on to their children and parents tell them to play with boys with boy toys and girls with girl toys.

Overall our world has lots of both Nature and Nurture aspects which impact the way we think and behave.