Calcium-calmodulin kinase II and cytoplasmic polyadenylation element-binding protein 1 pair as a biological swtich in long-term memory.
Lee, Qian Qian.
Date of Issue2011
School of Chemical and Biomedical Engineering
Personal identification numbers, directions to the office and mother’s birthday. These are just three amongst billions of others that we can recall with ease. The human brain, with its finite physical size and limited number of nerve cells, seem to have an exceedingly incredible capability to learn new things and store gargantuan amounts of information. However, beneath the surface of this remarkable organ lies an intricate and highly interconnected network of neurons fuelled by an array of specialised neurotransmitters. This project presents some of the major discoveries and key findings in the field of neuroscience from existing literature. The hypothesis that alpha calcium-calmodulin kinase II and cytoplasmic polyadenylation element-binding protein 1, two proteins postulated to be vital in the consolidation of long-term memory, can work collaboratively as a biological switch is also investigated here. A computational approach, in particular MATLAB® version 7.11.0 (R2010b), was employed to explore the validity of this theory. The results suggests that that alpha calcium-calmodulin kinase II indeed possess duo steady states under certain conditions. The level of protein kinase tends to converge to either one of two levels in the long-term based on parameters and variables provided. Understanding the molecular mechanisms of memory is a crucial step in finding therapeutic treatments for neurological disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease.
Final Year Project (FYP)
Nanyang Technological University