Scientists Control Rat's Dreams

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Scientists Control Rat's Dreams

Postby PossibleSloth » Wed Sep 05, 2012 8:14 pm UTC

Apparently scientists at MIT were able to determine that a rat was dreaming about the maze it had run earlier in the day by measuring brain activity. What's really cool is that the correct path (the one with food at the end) was indicated by a audio cue and that playing the cue while the rats were sleeping caused them to dream about the correct path.

Researchers working at MIT have successfully manipulated the content of a rat's dream by replaying an audio cue that was associated with the previous day's events, namely running through a maze (what else).

The breakthrough furthers our understanding of how memory gets consolidated during sleep -- but it also holds potential for the prospect of "dream engineering." Working at MIT's Picower Institute for Learning and Memory, neuroscientist Matt Wilson was able to accomplish this feat by exploiting the way the brain's hippocampus encodes self-experienced events into memory.

Get the Inception jokes out of your system below.


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