What Causes the Brain to Recognize and Remember Danger?
In this article, three scientist, Bo Li, Mario Penzo, and Jason Tucciarone set out to answer this question for a paper to be published January 19th. Using mice to conduct their expiriements on, they got to work. They genetically altered the mice to see how they directly react to the feeling of danger, simulated by foot shocks. Right away they discovered that PVT was highly sensitive to the threats, and that the posterior of the PVT sent signals to the CeL which kept the memories of the fear. But what chemical was the pPVT sending? The scientists thought it could be the chemical BDNF, and so they created mice without the chemical, and in turn those mice displayed an inability to recognize fear. And those mice with increased BDNF displayed a heightened sense of fear; thus proving their hypothesis. And so the scientists had discovered that the chemical BDNF is what allows us to recognize and remember fear.
I found this article to be interesting to read, and enjoyable. A lot of people have their own ideas and opinions of what really fear is and up until now fear was an opinion. I think it's amazing that fear is this chemical that can be taken out of you at any point, and where it comes from. This article taught me a lot and left me walking away with a little more knowledge than I came with. I really enjoyed reading it.