A Small Electrical Zap to the Brain Can Help Retrieve Forgotten Memories

By: | June 10th, 2019

In a big breakthrough, researchers from the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) have discovered that electrical stimulation could aid memory.

Researchers pinpointed a certain region of the brain that plays an important role in memory recall. The research also shows that one mild electrical “zap” to the left rostrolateral prefrontal cortex (RLPFC) using non-invasive transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) improves people’s ability to retrieve memories.

RLPFC is an area of the brain which is located behind the left side of forehead, between the eyebrow and hairline.

Jesse Rissman, an assistant professor at University of California, Los Angeles in the US, said, “We think this brain area is particularly important in accessing knowledge that you formed in the past and in making decisions about it,”

Researchers conducted experiments on 72 participants and they tested them for three different things: memory, reasoning, and perception. They found that on increasing excitability, there was no significant change in thinking or perception; however their memory was significantly better.

Rissman said, “Our previous neuroimaging studies showed the left rostrolateral prefrontal cortex is highly engaged during memory retrieval,”

“Now the fact that people do better on this memory task when we excite this region with electrical stimulation provides causal evidence that it contributes to the act of memory retrieval.”

Nidhi Goyal

Nidhi is a gold medalist Post Graduate in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences. You can also find Nidhi on Google+.

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