New Jersey – A new study discovered that a drug mostly prescribed for treating cancer named “RGFP966” was actually effective for the improvement of memory. The study was conducted by researchers from the Rutgers University at New Jersey and it was published in the journal of Neuroscience.

The scientists discovered the benefits from the cancer drug when they administered to the rats. They found that the rats were more attuned to what they were hearing, retained more information and even able to remember it. Also, the rats developed new connections that allowed these memories to be transmitted between brain cells.

Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia, a general term for memory loss and other intellectual abilities serious enough to interfere with daily life. Alzheimer’s disease accounts for 60 to 80 percent of dementia cases. Credit: Accelerating Science

“A drug now being used to treat cancer might make it easier to learn a language, sharpen memory and help those with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease by rewiring the brain and keeping neurons alive,” the study summary reported.


Researchers discovered that RGFP966 helps make the neurons more receptive to connections and even improve their ability to form memories. The rats who were supplied with the drug remembered better certain music following the study that they had been taught when receiving a compensation.

Scientists also found that rats were more tuned in to certain acoustic signals that they heard while they were administered with the drug, which is particularly important due to setting up the brain to better process and store significant sounds critical to human speech and language.

“Memory-making in neurological conditions like Alzheimer’s disease is often poor or absent altogether once a person is in the advanced stages of the disease. This drug could rescue the ability to make new memories that are rich in detail and content, even in the worst case scenarios,” said Kasia M. Bieszczad, lead author and assistant professor in Behavioral and Systems Neuroscience in the Department of Psychology, the Science Daily reported.

This means, that people who have suffered speaking deterioration, as well as those undergoing cochlear implantation to reverse previous deafness, will be able to use this treatment to improve their capacity of learning. “The application could even extend to people with delayed language learning abilities or people trying to learn a second language,” said Bieszczad, as Science Daily reported.

Source: Science Daily