Memory affected by single gene

October 2003
New Scientist;10/25/2003, Vol. 180 Issue 2418, p17
A single gene has a profound effect on short-term memory skills, making a significant difference to how many words people can remember from a list. The neurotransmitter serotonin is best known for its role in depression, but drugs that block a particular serotonin receptor in the brain also inhibit short-term memory. People inherit one of two types of the gene for this receptor, with 9 per cent of people having a form that is less readily stimulated by serotonin.


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