Brain boosting techniques are slowly heralding the onset of technologies and methods to enhance one’s memory or thinking power. On this note, scientists at the UT Southwestern Medical Center have demonstrated how genetic manipulation could accelerate the growth of neurons and enhance the effect of anti-depressants in the process.
As observed in a set of mice, the team claimed that discarding the Nf1 gene apparently caused long-term improvements in neurogenesis. This subsequently led to growth of neurons, thereby making the mice more reactive to anti-depressant medications.
“The significant implication of this work is that enhancing neurogenesis sensitizes mice to antidepressants – meaning they needed lower doses of the drugs to affect ‘mood’ – and also appears to have anti-depressive and anti-anxiety effects of its own that continue over time,” cited Dr. Luis Parada, director of the Kent Waldrep Center for Basic Research on Nerve Growth and Regeneration and senior author.
Basically, the scientists conducted this research by using an advanced process to eliminate just the gene encrypting the Nf1 protein, while other kinds of genes remained untouched. This work essentially implicated that psychiatric conditions could be improved by manipulation of adult neurogenesis.
The research is published in the Journal of Neuroscience.