Macromolecules and Brain Function

  • John Gaito


Because the macromolecules, DNA and RNA, are ultimately involved in basic cellular functions, it is obvious that they play some role in all brain functioning. The real question, however, is whether the role of these macromolecules is a unique one for behavior. Early investigators suggested a unique function for the nucleic acids in learning and memory with base changes in RNA being the most popular mechanism in representing memory for experiential events (Hydén, 1959; Gaito, 1961; Dingman and Sporn, 1961). Other molecular changes were offered also (Gaito, 1961; Dingman and Sporn, 1961). Other individuals who suggested the uniqueness of RNA for learning events included Cameron (1963), McConnell (1962), Landauer (1964), and Pribram (1966). At present those individuals who think of RNA as providing a unique contribution during learning have discarded the base change ideas and emphasize instead selective activation of DNA sites to produce specific types of RNA (e.g., Hydén and Lange, 1965; Bonner, 1966; Gaito, 1966). (For a critical review of these approaches, see Dingman and Sporn, 1964 and Gaito, 1969.)


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© Meredith Corporation 1972

Authors and Affiliations

  • John Gaito
    • 1
  1. 1.York UniversityTorontoCanada

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