Memories can now be erased in a lab
The human brain is exquisitely adept at linking seemingly random details into a cohesive memory that can trigger myriad associations — some good, some not so good. For recovering addicts and individuals suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), unwanted memories can be devastating. Former meth addicts, for instance, report intense drug cravings triggered by associations with cigarettes, money, even gum (used to relieve dry mouth), pushing them back into the addiction they so desperately want to leave.
The surprising discovery, published this week online ahead of print by the journal Biological Psychiatry, points to a clear and workable method to disrupt unwanted memories while leaving the rest intact.
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