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The Role of microRNAs in Memory Consolidation in Lymnaea

The Role of microRNAs in Memory Consolidation in Lymnaea content piece image
After single-trial classical conditioning there are well-defined time windows of activation of and requirement for key ‘conventional’ molecular players in the different phases of the consolidation of longterm memory (LTM) in Lymnaea. Two important related discoveries we have made recently are:

i) late LTM (24h post-training) requires transcription at 6h post-training

ii) at 6h post-training, there is ongoing phosphorylation of CREB1 and increased acetylation of H3, both of which can be measured in the ‘learning ganglia’ as well as in single identified neurons known to be involved in learning

However, the requirement for new protein synthesis for LTM only lasts for up to 1h after conditioning. Together, these findings gave rise to the hypothesis that newly transcribed non-coding RNAs (e.g., miRNAs) are involved in the early as well as intermediate-term phase of memory consolidation. We tested this hypothesis by investigating the temporal dynamics of the post-training expression of miRNAs in the ‘learning ganglia’ of Lymnaea.