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publicado em 18/10/2011 às 12h00:00
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Carriers of particular gene variant have a better memory

Study suggests that it is possible to reject the theory that the brain of a non-carrier is able to compensate for this lack

 
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The T allele Kibra have better memories than those who do not have this gene variant. Lined on the findings, the study suggests that it is possible to reject the theory that the brain of a non-carrier compensates for this absence.

In the study conducted by researchers at Umeå University, Kibra was first examined in relation to memory performance of a group of 2,230 individuals. As in previous studies, the Kibra T allele performed better than non-carriers. Then, the brain activity of 83 individuals were studied with the help of MRI. In contrast to the previous study, the increased activation of the hippocampus was observed in patients with T Kibra than in non-carriers.

Thanks to the large number of individuals in the study, the effect could also be studied in a group in which patients with T Kibra performed better (83 individuals) and a sub-group in which memory performance was similar between those with and non-carriers (63 individuals) of Kibra T. This is especially important because the differences in memory performance are considered important to interpret the differences in brain activation. However, in both cases, holders of Kibra T had increased activation in the hippocampus, which means that the effect of Kibra on brain activation does not depend on the difference in memory performance, but it is important for the performance of the same.

The conclusion must be that there is no support for the previous theory on the compensatory mechanisms of non-carriers of Kibra T. Instead, the new findings indicate that the gene influences Kibra memory to improve the functioning of the hippocampus in patients with allele T.

In a study published in Science magazine in 2006, the entire genome was examined (in an association study of the genome) for the genetic variations important for episodic memory. Individuals who had the T allele (CT or TT genotype) polymorphism in a C / T gene in common Kibra had a better episodic memory than non-carriers of the T allele (CC genotype). In the same study, brain activity was examined during a memory task in 30 subjects with the help of a camera imaging (MRI). It was found that non-carriers of the T allele had a better activation of the hippocampus, a brain area that is important for episodic memory, than the holders.

Because the groups had the same memory performance, the results were explained as an indication that non-carriers needed to compensate for his worst memory function with increased activation of the hippocampus to achieve the same level of performance than those with Kibra T. The increased activation in the hippocampus is strongly associated with the positive aspects of working memory and other memory-related genes was observed the opposite: greater activation of the hippocampus in patients with a gene variant that is related to a better memory (eg, Hariri et al., 2003). In these cases, a reasonable explanation is that the gene is important for memory through a favorable effect on the functioning of the hippocampus.

The improved memory performance in Kibra T allele was found in several subsequent studies, but since the 2006 article in Science magazine, this is the first study of Kibra in relation to brain activation.

Source: Isaude.net
   Palavras-chave:   Kibra T    Memory performance    Hippocampus    Brain activation    The T allele   
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Kibra T    memory performance    hippocampus    brain activation    the T allele   
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