Establishing circuit, neuronal and synaptic mechanisms of associative recognition memory


  • Prof Zafar Bashir

    University of Bristol

  • Prof Elizabeth Warburton

    University of Bristol

Project summary

Successful recall of stimuli and their previous locations is essential for us to lead normal lives. Associative recognition memory allows us to remember the association between items, places and time enabling us to recognise, for example, where we parked the car. We know that different types of memory information rely on many different parts of the brain. However, there is little idea of how communication between these different brain regions allows us to acquire and recall different memories.

We will use the rat’s innate ability to remember objects and their locations to examine which connections are essential for successful memory formation and which cellular processes control the necessary communication between different brain regions. We will achieve this by silencing specific connections between brain regions during memory tasks and using neurone recording methods from brain slices and whole animals to examine the precise chemical and transmitter mechanisms that control communication at those connections.

These advances in our understanding of memory mechanisms will pave the way for future studies into how learning and memory declines with age or dementia.