Molecular nodes in memory processing: Insights from Aplysia

K. J. Reissner, J. L. Shobe, Thomas Carew

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Recent research in a variety of systems indicates that memory formation can involve the activation of a wide range of molecular cascades. In assessing this recent work it is clear that no single cascade is uniquely important for all forms of memory, nor is a single form of memory uniquely dependent on a single cascade. Rather, it appears that molecular networks are differentially engaged in the induction of various forms of memory. Despite this highly interactive array of possible cascades, specific 'molecular nodes' have emerged as critical regulatory points in memory formation. Functionally, these nodes can operate in two sequential steps, beginning with a convergence of inputs which coordinately influence the activation state of the node, in which the nature of stimulation determines the dynamics of nodal activity, followed by a divergence of substrate selection, in which the node serves as a gateway that activates specific downstream effectors. Finally, specific nodes can be differentially engaged (i.e. have different 'weights') depending upon the nature and pattern of the activating stimulus. The marine mollusk Aplysia has proven useful for a molecular analysis of memory formation. We will use this system to highlight some of the molecular strategies employed by the nervous system in the formation of memory for sensitization, and we will focus on extracellular signal-related kinase as a candidate node integral to these processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)963-974
Number of pages12
JournalCellular and Molecular Life Sciences
Volume63
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2006

Fingerprint

Aplysia
Data storage equipment
Processing
Chemical activation
Mollusca
Neurology
Nervous System
Phosphotransferases
Weights and Measures
Substrates
Research

Keywords

  • Aplysia
  • ERK
  • Facilitation
  • Memory
  • Node
  • Serotonin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Cell Biology

Cite this

Molecular nodes in memory processing : Insights from Aplysia. / Reissner, K. J.; Shobe, J. L.; Carew, Thomas.

In: Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences, Vol. 63, No. 9, 05.2006, p. 963-974.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Reissner, K. J. ; Shobe, J. L. ; Carew, Thomas. / Molecular nodes in memory processing : Insights from Aplysia. In: Cellular and Molecular Life Sciences. 2006 ; Vol. 63, No. 9. pp. 963-974.
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