Manipulating Memories to Help Treat Brain Illness

Tuesday, August 9, 2022, 2:00 pm EDT
Meet the Scientist - August 2022

This talk will cover the emerging field of artificial memory manipulation and will focus on manipulating positive and negative memories to better understand how these processes work. Can memories be manipulated to prevent brain pathologies or to restore cognition and behavior? Dr. Ramirez will discuss how memory manipulation might be leveraged to treat brain disorders in general, and highlight their potential to increase the overall health of an organism.

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Presented by 
Steve Ramirez, Ph.D.
Steve Ramirez, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences

Boston University

2016 Young Investigator Grant

The mission of Dr. Ramirez's lab is twofold: to reveal the neural circuit mechanisms of memory storage and retrieval, and to artificially modulate memories to combat maladaptive states. They will do so in a multi-disciplinary fashion by combining virus engineering strategies, immunohistochemistry and physiology, optogenetics and functional imaging of targeted populations in vivo, and a battery of behavioral assays. Their technical repertoire, of course, will evolve as their studies evolve.

Moderated by 
Jeffrey Borenstein, M.D.
Brain & Behavior Research Foundation

President and CEO

Jeffrey Borenstein, M.D., serves as the President & CEO of the Brain & Behavior Research Foundation, the largest private funder of mental health research grants. Dr. Borenstein developed the Emmy Award-nominated public television program “Healthy Minds,” and serves as host of the series. The program, which is broadcast nationwide, focuses on topics in psychiatry in order to educate the public, reduce stigma and offer a message of hope. Dr. Borenstein also serves as Editor-in-Chief of Psychiatric News, the newspaper of the American Psychiatric Association.

Dr. Borenstein is a Fellow of the New York Academy of Medicine and serves as the Chair of the Section of Psychiatry at the Academy. He has served as the President of the National Association of Psychiatric Health Systems. Among the many honors to his credit are the National Alliance on Mental Illness of NY State Connie Lieber Award, the American Psychiatric Association Special Presidential Commendation, and the Federation of Organizations Community Mental Health Man of the Year Award.