Neuropsychology and the Study of Memory - Dr. Brenda Milner (BS 129)

Neuropsychology and the Study of Memory - Dr. Brenda Milner (BS 129)

BS 129 features pioneering neuroscientist Brenda Milner. Dr. Milner is best known for work work on memory including key discoveries she made while working with the famous patient HM. She also made important discoveries about the differences between the brain's hemispheres by studying the so-called "split brain" patients. This interview was recorded in 2008 when Dr. Milner was 90, but I am glad to report that she is still going strong at age 98.

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Celebrating 4 Years of the Brain Science Podcast (BSP 71)

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The latest episode of the Brain Science Podcast (BSP 71) is our 4th annual review episode.  As usual, I review highlights from this year's interviews, but this year I added a new feature: my personal reflections on how the Brain Science Podcast has impacted my life.  This episode also contains a special announcement for UK listeners.

How to get this episode:

  • Premium Subscribers now have unlimited access to all old episodes and transcripts.
  • Buy mp3 for $1.
  • Buy Transcript for $1.
  • New episodes of the Brain Science Podcast are always FREE.  All episodes posted after January 1, 2013, are free.  See the individual show notes for links the audio files.

Major Topics from Season 4:

  • Emotions with Jaak Panksepp (BSP 65).
  • Memory with Randy Gallistel (BSP 66).
  • Consciousness with Thomas Metzinger (BSP 67).
  • Alzheimer's Disease with Peter Whitehouse (BSP 68 and Books and Ideas 36).
  • Glia Cells with R. Douglas Fields (BSP 69).
  • Pop Psychology Myths with Scott Lilienfeld (BSP 70).

References:

Announcements:

  • The Brain Science Podcast app is now available for both iPhone and ANDROID (NEW!)
  • Be sure to subscribe to my Books and Ideas podcast. The next episode will come out in December.
  • The next episode of the Brain Science Podcast will come out in January 2010. 
  • Sign up for our Newsletter so that you won't miss any episodes.

Send me feedback at brainsciencepodcast@gmail.com.

Memory: Challenging Current Theories with Randy Gallistel, PhD (BSP 66)

Episode 66 of the Brain Science Podcast is an interview with Randy Gallistel, PhD, Co-Director of the Rutgers Center for Cognitive Science and co-author (with Adam Philip King) of Memory and the Computational Brain: Why Cognitive Science Will Transform Neuroscience.

We discuss why read/write memory is an essential element of computation, with an emphasis on the animal experiments that support the claim that brains must possess read/write memory.  This is significant because current models, such as neural nets, DO NOT incorporate read/write memory in their assumptions about how brains work.  It is not necessary to have any background in information theory or computation to appreciate the experiments that are discussed in this episode.

Episode 3 and Episode 12 of the Brain Science Podcast  providebackground information for this episode.

How to get this episode:

  • Premium Subscribers now have unlimited access to all old episodes and transcripts.
  • Buy mp3 for $1.
  • Buy Transcript for $1.
  • New episodes of the Brain Science Podcast are always FREE.  All episodes posted after January 1, 2013, are free.  See the individual show notes for links the audio files.

References and Links:

Announcements:

Send feedback to gincampbell at mac dot com or leave voice mail at 205-202-0663.

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Dr. Brenda Milner Swamped by Admirers

Neuroscience pioneer, Dr. Brenda Milner gave a memorable lecture on the history of memory research yesterday afternoon at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience.  Before her talk, she was greeted by old colleagues, including Nobel Laureate, Dr. Eric Kandel.  (I was able to talk with Dr. Kandel briefly and he has agreed to come on the Brain Science Podcast in 2009!)

After her talk, Dr. Milner was swamped by young admirers who were eager to have their pictures taken with this amazing pioneer.  Dr. Milner’s talk included a discussion of her work with the famous patient HM, but she was very meticulous about crediting the work of others including Dr. Sue Corkin of MIT, who was also in the audience.  Readers who missed the lecture can get a feel for the story Dr. Milner shared by listening to her recent interviews on Futures in Biotech and the Brain Science Podcast.

Since I recently interviewed Dr. Milner for Episode 49 of the Brain Science Podcast,  I was grateful to have the chance to meet her in person and to give her a Brain Science Podcast t-shirt.

Listen to Dr. Milner on the Brain Science Podcast

Send email feedback to Ginger Campbell, MD at docartemis at gmail.com

Share your comments on the Discussion Forum

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Dr. Brenda Milner: Pioneer in Memory Research (BSP 49)

Brain Science Podcast #49 is an interview with pioneering neuroscientist, Brenda Milner, PhD.  Dr. Milner is known for her contributions to understanding memory and her work with split-brain patients.  Her work as an experimental psychologist has been fundamental to the emergence of the field of cognitive neuroscience.

This interview is a follow-up of Dr. Milner's recent interview with Dr. Marc Pelletier on Futures in Biotech.  I highly recommend listening to both interviews.

How to get this episode:

  • Premium Subscribers now have unlimited access to all old episodes and transcripts.
  • Buy mp3 for $1.
  • Buy Transcript for $1.
  • New episodes of the Brain Science Podcast are always FREE.  All episodes posted after January 1, 2013, are free.  See the individual show notes for links the audio files.

Listen to Dr. Milner on Futures in Biotech (Episode33)

Additional Links:

Send email feedback to Ginger Campbell, MD at brainsciencepodcast@gmail.com.

Don't Miss Neuroscience Pioneer, Dr. Brenda Milner, on Futures in Biotech

In Episode 33 Futures in Biotech  host Marc Pelletier, PhD, interviews pioneering researcher, Dr. Brenda Milner from the Montreal Neurological Institute.  Dr. Milner is best known for her work with HM, the patient that she worked with for many decades.  Her work helped neuroscientists appreciate the role of the hippocampus in memory and the fact that there are multiple types of memory, some of which do not require the hippocampus.

One of the things that makes this interview special is that Dr. Milner gives us the inside story on some of the pioneering work that we now take for granted.  She emphasizes how the work fit into the context of its time, giving an unique glimpse into the history of how science really unfolds.

Click here to learn more.

Futures in Biotech is a valuable contributor to SCIENCEPODCASTERS.ORG.

Year-end Review for 2007 (BSP 27)

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Episode 27 is a look back on the first 26 episodes of the Brain Science Podcast.

I look back on some of the main topics that we have explored including memory, consciousness, emotions, decision-making, body maps, and plasticity.  Then I talk a little about what I hope to do in the covering year.  This episode is a little more personal than most, and will mainly be of interest to regular listeners.  It includes some ideas about how you can help the Brain Science Podcast grow and prosper.

However, in preparing this episode, I went back over the past year's episodes, and I have prepared a list of all the episodes so far and the main topics.  This should help both new listeners and regulars to find episodes that pertain to particular topics.

How to get this episode:

  • Premium Subscribers now have unlimited access to all old episodes and transcripts.
  • Buy mp3 for $1.
  • Buy Transcript for $1.
  • New episodes of the Brain Science Podcast are always FREE.  All episodes posted after January 1, 2013, are free.  See the individual show notes for links the audio files.
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"Memory: From Mind to Molecules" (BSP 12)

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This episode of the Brain Science Podcast is a discussion of memory based on the book, Memory: From Mind to Molecules (2000), by Larry R. Squire, and Eric R. Kandel.

How to get this episode:

  • Premium Subscribers now have unlimited access to all old episodes and transcripts.
  • Buy mp3 for $1
  • Transcripts: BSP 1-14
  • New episodes of the Brain Science Podcast are always FREE.  All episodes posted after January 1, 2013, are free.  See the individual show notes for links the audio files.

Show Notes

I highly recommend that you get this book for yourself if you want to read the details of the experiments.  The book contains excellent illustrations.

Some of the experimental animals mentioned in this episode include Aplysia (giant sea snails), drosophila (fruit flies), and mice.

Mechanisms of memory formation and storage seem to be shared from the simplest non-vertebrates up through humans.

Types of Memory:    declarative and non-declarative. Non-declarative memory is generally NOT subject to conscious awareness or control.

There are many different types of non-declarative memory including:

Declarative memory, which seems to be unique to animals that have a hippocampus and cerebral cortex, includes short-term (immediate and working memory) and long-term memory.  Much research has been devoted to discovering how and where long-term memory occurs.  The answer may surprise you.

This episode includes a discussion of some of the unanswered questions in memory research.

Review of Eric Kandel's "In Search of Memory" (BSP 3)

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Show Notes for Episode 3:  In Search of Memory, by Eric R Kandel

Dr. Eric R. Kandel won the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 2000 for his work with the giant marine snail Aplysia.  His work helped uncovered the molecular mechanisms of short- and long-term memory.

In this episode, I talk about Dr. Kandel’s autobiography, In Search of Memory: The Emergence of a New Science of Mind.  The focus of the podcast is what has been learned about how memory works.  A key principle is that the molecular mechanisms of memory are the same in all animals, including people.

There is lots of good information on the web about Aplysia’s role in understanding learning and memory.  If you know of a particularly good website for non-specialists, please leave a comment on this page.  

How to get this episode:

  • Premium Subscribers now have unlimited access to all old episodes and transcripts.
  • Buy BSP 1-10 (zip file of mp3 files)
  • Transcripts: BSP 1-14
  • New episodes of the Brain Science Podcast are always FREE.  All episodes posted after January 1, 2013, are free.  See the individual show notes for links the audio files.

Send me feedback at brainsciencepodcast@gmail.com.