Images taken using fluorescent proteins have shown that when memories are formed, new proteins are synthesized locally in synapses. This strengthens synaptic connections and essentially strengthens and reinforces the memory.
Synapses in the brain are constantly changing and adapting, forming new connections. This mutability is central to learning, creativity, and the forming of new synapses--making memories.
An important question has always been how long-term memories are made and stabilized in this changing environment. This study helps provide evidence of regulated translation of localized mRNA at stimulated synapses, which could be the molecular basis for long-term memory formation, and for deficiencies in learning and memory. This is really cool.