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The influence of neurogenesis in hippocampal function

Jorna, L.M. (2011) The influence of neurogenesis in hippocampal function. Bachelor's Thesis, Biology.

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Abstract

After the research community accepted the fact that neurogenesis takes place in the subventricular zone, after which the cells migrate to the olfactory bulb, and the dentate gyrus of the hippocampal formation, questions raised about the function of such mechanism. For many years, these functions were studied in a behavioral context, by ablating neurogenesis in for instance the dentate gyrus and the subsequent search for impairments in brain function. Other research focused on the cellular aspects of the birth and maturation of neurons. The hippocampal formation has been found to have a function in spatial navigation and the formation of memories. It consists out of several connected regions, forming a signaling loop. The signal from various sensory regions of the brain first arrive in the entorhinal cortex. Subsequently, the signal is sent to the dentate gyrus. This region signals to the CA3. From there, the signal travels to the CA1, which sends to the subiculum. The subiculum closes the loop by sending the input back to the entorhinal cortex. There are many other signaling routes within this structure, which makes it hard to pinpoint the exact function of each of those areas, and how neurogenesis influences this function. Behavioral studies shed light on the more general features. Neurogenesis in the hippocampus has been found to influence the capability of the organism to distinguish between two different events. The rate of neurogenesis does also correlate with the separating ability. However, the precise cellular mechanism of this process is unknown and highly disputed in the neuroscience field. Two opposing views, the one of Aimone et al, which supports the memory resolution theory, and the one of Sahay et al, which embraces the more accepted pattern separation view, both explain the behavioural findings of the recent years but differ highly in the mechanism in which this is controlled. Unraveling this mechanism might be crucial for the proper treatment of conditions in which this separating function is disturbed, like autism, post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and anxiety.

Item Type: Thesis (Bachelor's Thesis)
Degree programme: Biology
Thesis type: Bachelor's Thesis
Language: English
Date Deposited: 15 Feb 2018 07:45
Last Modified: 15 Feb 2018 07:45
URI: http://fse.studenttheses.ub.rug.nl/id/eprint/9644

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