Mar 20, 2020

Ventral hippocampal input to the prelimbic cortex dissociates the context from the cue association in trace fear memory

The Journal of Neuroscience : the Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience
Robert C TwiningMarieke R Gilmartin


The prefrontal cortex, through its high degree of interconnectivity with cortical and subcortical brain areas, mediates cognitive and emotional processes in support of adaptive behaviors. This includes the formation of fear memories when the anticipation of threat demands learning about temporal or contextual cues, as in trace fear conditioning. In this variant of fear learning, the association of a cue and shock across an empty trace interval of several seconds requires sustained cue-elicited firing in the prelimbic cortex (PL). However, it is unknown how and when distinct PL afferents contribute to different associative components of memory. Among the prominent inputs to PL, the hippocampus shares with PL a role in both working memory and contextual processing. Here we tested the necessity of direct hippocampal input to the PL for the acquisition of trace cued fear memory and the simultaneously acquired contextual fear association. Optogenetic silencing of ventral hippocampal (VH) terminals in the PL of adult male Long-Evans rats selectively during paired trials revealed that direct communication between the VH and PL during training is necessary for contextual fear memory, but not for trace cued fear acquisition. The pattern...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

Fear Response
Memory, Short-Term
Cerebral Cortex
Memory Impairment
Conditioning, Classical
Fear (Mental Process)
Clinical Trials

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