Northwestern Events Calendar


"Artificially Manipulating Positive and Negative Memories in Healthy and Maladaptive States"

When: Friday, September 24, 2021
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM Central

Where: Online

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Student - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Donna Daviston   312.503.1687

Group: Department of Neuroscience Seminars

Category: Lectures & Meetings


The Department of Neuroscience welcomes Dr. Steve Ramirez, Assistant Professor, with Boston University to the 2021/2022 seminar series.


Memories thread and unify our sense of being. In recent years, the advent of activity-dependent and inducible optogenetic strategies have enabled us to image, tag, and manipulate defined sets of cells active during discrete periods of time, including learning and recollection. Here, I'll discuss our recent advances in modulating hippocampus and amygdala cells processing specific memories in the context of healthy and psychiatric disease-like states. Our results our twofold: 1) we show that acute activation of hippocampus and amygdala-mediated positive and negative memories can bi-directionally control both reward, social, and aversion-related behaviors; 2) we provide proof of principle data demonstrating brain-wide tagging and molecular characterization of cells active during positive and negative memory formation. Together, we suggest that these defined sets of cells are sufficient to lastingly modulate a battery of healthy and maladaptive behavioral states and provide novel avenues for molecular, circuit, and systems-wide interrogation of memory engrams.

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