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Research Article

PKMζ Maintains Spatial, Instrumental, and Classically Conditioned Long-Term Memories

  • Peter Serrano equal contributor,

    equal contributor Contributed equally to this work with: Peter Serrano, Eugenia L Friedman

    Affiliation: Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, The Robert F. Furchgott Center for Neural and Behavioral Science, State University of New York, Brooklyn, New York, United States of America

    ¤ Current address: Department of Psychology and the Gene Research Center, Hunter College, City University of New York, New York, New York, United States of America

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  • Eugenia L Friedman equal contributor,

    equal contributor Contributed equally to this work with: Peter Serrano, Eugenia L Friedman

    Affiliations: Department of Psychiatry, University of Wisconsin-Madison Medical School, Madison, Wisconsin, United States of America, Neuroscience Training Program, University of Wisconsin-Madison Medical School, Madison, Wisconsin, United States of America

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  • Jana Kenney,

    Affiliation: Institute of Physiology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Prague, Czech Republic

    X
  • Stephen M Taubenfeld,

    Affiliation: Fishberg Department of Neuroscience, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, Icahn Medical Institute, New York, New York, United States of America

    X
  • Joshua M Zimmerman,

    Affiliation: Neuroscience Program, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States of America

    X
  • John Hanna,

    Affiliation: Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, The Robert F. Furchgott Center for Neural and Behavioral Science, State University of New York, Brooklyn, New York, United States of America

    X
  • Cristina Alberini,

    Affiliation: Fishberg Department of Neuroscience, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, Icahn Medical Institute, New York, New York, United States of America

    X
  • Ann E Kelley †,

    † Deceased.

    Affiliation: Department of Psychiatry, University of Wisconsin-Madison Medical School, Madison, Wisconsin, United States of America

    X
  • Stephen Maren,

    Affiliations: Neuroscience Program, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States of America, Department of Psychology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States of America

    X
  • Jerry W Rudy,

    Affiliation: Department of Psychology, Center for Neuroscience, University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado, United States of America

    X
  • Jerry C. P Yin,

    Affiliations: Department of Psychiatry, University of Wisconsin-Madison Medical School, Madison, Wisconsin, United States of America, Department of Genetics, University of Wisconsin-Madison Medical School, Madison, Wisconsin, United States of America

    X
  • Todd C Sacktor mail,

    To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: tsacktor@downstate.edu (TCS); afenton@downstate.edu (AAF)

    Affiliations: Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, The Robert F. Furchgott Center for Neural and Behavioral Science, State University of New York, Brooklyn, New York, United States of America, Department of Neurology, The Robert F. Furchgott Center for Neural and Behavioral Science, State University of New York, Brooklyn, New York, United States of America

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  • André A Fenton mail

    To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: tsacktor@downstate.edu (TCS); afenton@downstate.edu (AAF)

    Affiliation: Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, The Robert F. Furchgott Center for Neural and Behavioral Science, State University of New York, Brooklyn, New York, United States of America

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  • Published: December 23, 2008
  • DOI: 10.1371/journal.pbio.0060318

Reader Comments (1)

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good job

Posted by plosbiology on 07 May 2009 at 22:28 GMT

Author: Piotr Nizynski
E-mail: alan@thenom.sy
Submitted Date: December 26, 2008
Published Date: January 2, 2009
This comment was originally posted as a “Reader Response” on the publication date indicated above. All Reader Responses are now available as comments.

This only confirms my theory of what fear at bottom is. First, it is the original state of chaotic reaction, something close to crying or laughing (they're close to each other...maybe the latter is weaker) in a just-born child. In such chaotic state neurons between sensoric and motoric centres are connected randomly, or anyway not yet much organized. (Similarly, when you are angry, then - thanks to change in neuromodulators - certain less trained and more primitive, i.e. close to that chaos, sides of your personality might appear in the foreground. So you see how these emotional states are all close in the beginning.)

As one gets trained and grown up, the brain learns to handle most common situations: this is why chicks don't escape when they see more common, i.e. harmless, birds. But when a stimula is completely unhandled by other ways, it apparently ends up going through those primary & still existing primitive tracks in the cerebrial cortex (and whatever else is plastic in the brain).

Another thing, of course, is reluctance and all this "intellectual fear," which in man follows from memory. You don't do something instantly, because you think: thinking inhibits action. And you think in this situation, because many associations arised in your brain during, for example, sudden pain (like when burning oneself) and especially in the phase after. You acted and thought much at that moment (because of much stimula from the pheripheral system and probably much autonomous reaction), and that's why many memories arised then.

(Besides, animals and men are less reluctant to taking actions and risk, so in short more couragous, when dopamine levels are higher, but that's already completely another story.)

Of course, there are also these mechanisms with adrenaline/PEA's, and the whole limbic system; but I'd say their role here is more rudimentary, for example they might instinctively react on sounds, sudden movements, stimula etc., and produce chemicals in response to them (I think it is generally known that diencephalon is the residence of instincts, inborn "programs", and hormone production).

No competing interests declared.