Researchers report estrogen may play a significant role in synaptic plasticity and memory formation. The study reports mice whose neurons did not produce estrogen have impairments in spatial reference memories, recognition and contextual fear memories. Restoring estrogen levels assisted in reversing the memory impairments, the study revealed.
Researchers discover that an enzyme known for generating toxic brain plaques in Alzheimer's disease also causes additional memory and cognitive deficits via a separate mechanism. They found that BACE1 disrupts the cell's production of other molecules required for PKA function. By that mechanism, BACE1 inactivates PKA and therefore inhibits memory formation in mice, even in the absence of neurotoxic β-amyloid.