European researchers have identified a gene that is linked to improved memory, but also to increased risk of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Dominique de Quervain of the University of Basel in Switzerland and his colleagues recruited around 700 healthy young volunteers, obtaining DNA samples from them to analyse the sequence of their PRKCA gene. This gene is one of many known to be involved in the formation of emotional memories, and encodes an enzyme called protein kinase C-α. The researchers then showed the participants a series of emotionally affecting photographs and shortly afterwards asked them to write down short descriptions of the images. >