Memory: A divalent boost from magnesium

Enhanced levels of dietary magnesium improve long-term memory in fruit flies.
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Elevated levels of magnesium (Mg++) can enhance long-term memory performance in the fruit fly.

Fruit flies were fed a diet supplemented with either 1 mM (the control group) or 80 mM magnesium chloride (MgCl2) for four days, and then trained to associate food with an odor (known as appetitive olfactory conditioning). Memory was tested by allowing the flies to choose between rewarded (pink) and unrewarded (green) odors. Immediate memory (tested seconds after training) is similar in both groups of flies. However, flies fed a high-magnesium diet do not exhibit the normal decline in memory observed at 24 hours after training. Performance = {[flies choosing rewarded odor]-[flies choosing unrewarded odor]}/[flies choosing either odor].

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  1. Willem J Laursen
  2. Paul A Garrity
(2021)
Memory: A divalent boost from magnesium
eLife 10:e65359.
https://doi.org/10.7554/eLife.65359