Memory Matters 2012

Memory Matters 2012 was held Thursday, May 3, 2012
at the Etter-Harbin Alumni Center on the UT campus.

The Center for Learning and Memory at The University of Texas at Austin invited the local community to join us for Memory Matters:  Exploring memory through research, an evening of talks and interactive displays.   During the program attendees learned how neuroscience research at The Center for Learning and Memory is unlocking the mystery of memory.

The talks gave a lay-person introduction into research that is ongoing at the Center, and how it applies to our understanding of the brain mechanisms underlying learning and memory.  In addition there were interactive displays and demonstration booths by several labs in the Center that allowed guests to test their memory, learn how neuroscience research applies to the study of learning and memory, and offered a glimpse into some of the types of research techniques employed in various neuroscience fields.

Memory Matters: Exploring memory through research… is now in its fourth year.  Click on the tabs above to view videos of the talks at previous Memory Matters events.

2012 Speakers

Michael Drew, PhD
Young cells for an old brain: new evidence about the brain’s ability to renew itself

Dr. Drew, an Assistant Professor in the Section of Neurobiology at The University of Texas, is interested in understanding the role of adult neurogenesis, which is the birth of new neurons in the adult brain. In the 1980s and 1990s a small group of neuroscientists overturned firmly established conventional wisdom when they demonstrated that the adult mammalian brain can generate new nerve cells. We now know that adult neurogenesis occurs in some regions of the human brain and is regulated by everyday behaviors, like exercise, cognitive activity, and the use of some commonly prescribed drugs. Dr. Drew will discuss how scientists discovered this phenomenon after having overlooked it for so long and how adult neurogenesis may relate to memory, aging, and disease.

Laura Colgin, PhD
EEG Rhythms: The Symphony of the Brain

Dr. Colgin, an Assistant Professor in the Section of Neurobiology at The University of Texas, focuses on understanding how brain rhythms that are generated by synchronized activity across groups of neurons are involved in complex cognitive functions. She will discuss how the electroencephalogram (EEG) was discovered and how EEG rhythms are generated in the brain. In addition, she will talk about different classes of synchronized EEG activity (”rhythms”) and relate what is known about their behavioral correlates and proposed functions, as well as provide examples of practical applications of EEG research in learning and memory.

Ila Fiete, PhD
What do satellite communications and the brain have in common?

Dr. Fiete, an Assistant Professor in the Section of Neurobiology at The University of Texas, focuses on understanding mammalian memory and its underpinnings in neurons, connections, and networks of the brain. She will discuss some fundamental limitations on memory and computation in the brain, how the brain allows us to perform spatial navigation, and what modern wireless and satellite communication technologies have in common with the brain.