Does Learning Involve Neurogenesis And Neuroplasticity?
It is generally accepted that learning and memory involve synaptic changes
in the brain. But there is debate about whether those changes are due to
neurogenesis (the formation of new neurons) or neuroplasticity (the
change in strength of existing connections between neurons).
Studies have shown that both neurogenesis and neuroplasticity play a role
in learning and memory. For example, one study found that rats that were
trained to navigate a maze had more new neurons in their hippocampus
(an area of the brain involved in learning and memory) than untrained
However, it is not clear how important neurogenesis is for learning and
memory. Some studies have found that blocking neurogenesis does not
affect learning, while others have found that it does. It is possible
that the role of neurogenesis in learning and memory varies depending on
the type of task being learned.
Neuroplasticity, on the other hand, is thought to be more important for
learning and memory. For example, studies have found that drugs that
enhance neuroplasticity improve learning and memory, while drugs that
inhibit it impair learning and memory.
Therefore, it seems likely that both neurogenesis and neuroplasticity play a role in learning and memory, but the precise role of each is still not fully understood.