Apr 25, 2020

Apparent Reconsolidation Interference Without Generalized Amnesia

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
J. M. AlfeiTom Beckers


Memories remain dynamic after consolidation, and when reactivated, they can be rendered vulnerable to various pharmacological agents that disrupt the later expression of memory (i.e., amnesia). Such drug-induced post-reactivation amnesia has traditionally been studied in AAA experimental designs, where a memory is initially created for a stimulus A (be it a singular cue or a context) and later reactivated and tested through exposure to the exact same stimulus. Using a contextual fear conditioning procedure in rats and midazolam as amnestic agent, we recently demonstrated that drug-induced amnesia can also be obtained when memories are reactivated through exposure to a generalization stimulus (GS, context B) and later tested for that same generalization stimulus (ABB design). However, this amnestic intervention leaves fear expression intact when at test animals are instead presented with the original training stimulus (ABA design) or a novel generalization stimulus (ABC design). The underlying mechanisms of post-reactivation memory malleability and of MDZ-induced amnesia for a generalization context remain largely unknown. Here, we evaluated whether, like typical CS-mediated (or AAA) post-reactivation amnesia, GS-mediated (ABB) ...Continue Reading

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