Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

BRIEFLY

Scented slumber aids memory

March 12, 2007|From Times wire reports

Just as the smell of watermelon might trigger a recollection of a childhood picnic, the release of odors during deep sleep can help people form new memories, a new study found.

Students who received bursts of rose-scented air while they played a memory game and then received similar bursts of smell during deep sleep outperformed others by 15% when they replicated the exercise the following day, according to a study published last week in the journal Science.

At night, a person's experiences during the day are replayed and cataloged in the hippocampus area of the brain and then communicated to the neocortex region, where conscious memories are stored, said Jan Born, a neuroscientist at the University of Lubeck, Germany, and one of the study's authors.

Born said that the study's findings may help scientists develop memory treatments that target the sleep cycle.

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|