Genes to Cognition Continuum
Professor Seth Grant outlines one way in which the Genes to Cognition Research Programme uses model organisms to study learning and memory in humans.
The way we bridge genes to cognition is to use gene mutations in mice and in humans and then study the behavior in mice and in humans. And a very simple example comes from recent work where there were families of boys who have mental retardation and particular learning deficits, and the gene that was defective in those boys was sequenced and discovered, and we engineered mice that contained the same mutation as in the humans, and these mice also have specific learning deficits. And this is simply the strategy of using mouse and human genetics and studying the psychology in the mice and in the humans. In addition, we also had to study the gap between behavior and genes which is to look at the electrophysiological properties of nerve cells, the biochemical properties of nerve cells and the proteomic characteristics of nerve cells.
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Genes to Cognition researchers discover a genetic basis for higher mental functions that provides new insights into autism and learning disability.
Students will experiment with an interactive animation to compare mutant and wild-type mice in a water maze. They will analyze data and discuss findings of a research paper.
Cognitive information is encoded in patterns of nervous activity and decoded by molecular listening devices at the synapse. Professor Seth Grant explains how different patterns of neural firing are critical to cognition.
Professor Seth Grant explains that the Genes to Cognition research program is investigating the network of proteins that are important to learning.
In studies of PSD95, Professor Seth Grant's group showed that memories are formed when neurotransmitter receptors associate with proteins.
Mental retardation: struggle, stigma, science.
Professor Seth Grant explains that long-term memories are created when the synapse sends a signal to the nucleus to activate certain genes.
Dr. Nicole King and Dr. Seth Grant join Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory's David Micklos to discuss the evolution of complex, multicellular animals. Remarkably, the molecules that have driven brain evolution, are the same molecules found in simple unicellula
Model organisms share with humans many key biochemical and physiological functions that have been conserved (maintained) by evolution.
This method uses homologous recombination to disable a gene of interest to produce a genetic knockout.