Visualizing new ways to see and influence the activity of neurons could transform the way we think and understand the brain and how it controls a vast number of our actions. Scientists at the University of Alberta are expanding current methods for visualizing the brain to include the ability to see neurotransmitters using natural fluorescent proteins, such as those in jellyfish and coral. They are testing the process on organisms like zebrafish, fruit flies, and mice to determine the degree to which certain neurons are active. To manipulate brain activity the researchers have created a new photocleavable protein which they will use to make the connections between neurons either stronger or weaker using light. This will give them the potential ultimately to implant certain associations, connections, and possibly even memories within the brain.