Synaptic correlates of associative fear memory in the lateral amygdala

Il Choi, Dong; Kim, Jooyoung; Lee, Hoonwon; Kim, Ji-il; Sung, Yongmin; Choi, Ja Eun; Venkat, S. Jayakumar; Park, Pojeong; Jung, Hyunsu; Kaang, Bong-Kiun ✉

English Article (Journal Article) Scientific
Published: NEURON 0896-6273 1097-4199 109 (17) pp. 2717-+ 2021
  • SJR Scopus - Neuroscience (miscellaneous): D1
  • Basic medicine
Successful adaptation to the environment requires an accurate response to external threats by recalling specific memories. Memory formation and recall require engram cell activity and synaptic strengthening among activated neuronal ensembles. However, elucidation of the underlying neural substrates of associative fear memory has remained limited without a direct interrogation of extinction-induced changes of specific synapses that encode a specific auditory fear memory. Using dual-eGRASP (enhanced green fluorescent protein reconstitution across synaptic partners), we found that synapses among activated neuronal ensembles or activated synaptic ensembles showed a significantly larger spine morphology at auditory cortex (AC)-to-lateral amygdala (LA) projections after auditory fear conditioning in mice. Fear extinction reversed these enhanced synaptic ensemble spines, whereas re-conditioning with the same tone and shock restored the spine size of the synaptic ensemble. We suggest that synaptic ensembles encode and represent different fear memory states.
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2024-06-25 11:38