Enjoying a cup of coffee now got an another motive. Recent research by John Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland, provided the first substantial confirmation that caffeine augments long-term memory in people subject to the condition that dosage is right.
The study, made on about 100 people suggested that a 200mg caffeine pill is equivalent to a strong mug of coffee. When consumed shortly after a learning session, it enhanced image reminiscence.
The volunteers were showed a series of images – for instance, a plant, or a saxophone, which they had to remember. The following day, both groups were asked to look at another set of pictures. Some images were the same as the previous day, others were new, and a few were similar.
Those who took a dosage of caffeine following a phase of learning were capable to recognize pictures more successfully the subsequent day than others who were given a dummy pill known as a placebo.
Saliva samples were taken one, three and 24 hours later to measure caffeine levels.
The brain’s ability to recognize the difference between two similar items reflects a deeper level of memory retention, researchers said.
The test wanted to differentiate the upshot of caffeine on the hippocampus, the part of the brain that categorizes between patterns – needing both short- and long-term memory.
Dr Michael Yassa, University of California, Irvine, said: ‘Caffeine enhanced consolidation of long-term memories.
The improvement was not witnessed with lesser doses of caffeine or when it was given one hour prior viewing the images.
“Caffeine is associated with healthy longevity and may have some protective effects from cognitive decline like Alzheimer’s disease,” said Yassa.
“These are certainly important questions for the future.”
The study was published in the journal Nature Neuroscience.