HDAC inhibition promotes both initial consolidation and reconsolidation of spatial memory in mice.
ABSTRACT: Accumulating evidence suggests a critical role for epigenetic regulations in long term memory (LTM) formation. Among them, post-translational modifications of proteins, as histone acetylation, are an important regulator of chromatin remodelling and gene transcription. While the implication of histone acetylation in memory consolidation is widely accepted, less is known about its role in memory reconsolidation i.e. during memory restabilization after its reactivation. In the present study, we investigated the role of histone acetylation during the initial consolidation and the reconsolidation of spatial memory, using a weak massed learning procedure in the Morris water maze paradigm in mice. Usually a weak learning is sufficient for short term memory (STM) formation, but insufficient to upgrade STM to LTM. We found that promoting histone acetylation through intra-hippocampal infusion of a class I selective histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitor immediately after a subthreshold spatial learning improved LTM but not STM retention. More importantly, inhibiting HDAC activity after the reactivation of a weak memory promoted specifically LTM reconsolidation without affecting post-reactivation STM. These findings argue in favour of an important role for histone acetylation in memory consolidation, and more particularly during the reconsolidation of spatial memory in mice.
Project description:Curcumin, a yellow-pigment compound found in the popular Indian spice turmeric (Curcuma longa), has been extensively investigated for its anti-inflammatory, chemopreventative, and antidepressant properties. Here, we examined the efficacy of dietary curcumin at impairing the consolidation and reconsolidation of a Pavlovian fear memory, a widely studied animal model of traumatic memory formation in posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). We show that a diet enriched with 1.5% curcumin prevents the training-related elevation in the expression of the immediate early genes (IEGs) Arc/Arg3.1 and Egr-1 in the lateral amygdala (LA) and impairs the 'consolidation' of an auditory Pavlovian fear memory; short-term memory (STM) is intact, whereas long-term memory (LTM) is significantly impaired. Next, we show that dietary curcumin impairs the 'reconsolidation' of a recently formed auditory Pavlovian fear memory; fear memory retrieval (reactivation) and postreactivation (PR)-STM are intact, whereas PR-LTM is significantly impaired. Additional experiments revealed that dietary curcumin is also effective at impairing the reconsolidation of an older, well-consolidated fear memory. Furthermore, we observed that fear memories that fail to reconsolidate under the influence of dietary curcumin are impaired in an enduring manner; unlike extinguished fear memories, they are not subject to reinstatement or renewal. Collectively, our findings indicate that a diet enriched with curcumin is capable of impairing fear memory consolidation and reconsolidation processes, findings that may have important clinical implications for the treatment of disorders such as PTSD that are characterized by unusually strong and persistently reactivated fear memories.
Project description:There is increasing evidence that regulation of local chromatin structure is a critical mechanism underlying the consolidation of long-term memory (LTM), however considerably less is understood about the specific mechanisms by which these epigenetic effects are mediated. Furthermore, the importance of histone acetylation in Drosophila memory has not been reported. The histone deacetylase (HDAC) Rpd3 is abundant in the adult fly brain, suggesting a post-mitotic function. Here, we investigated the role of Rpd3 in long-term courtship memory in Drosophila. We found that while modulation of Rpd3 levels predominantly in the adult mushroom body had no observed impact on immediate recall or one-hour memory, 24-hour LTM was severely impaired. Surprisingly, both overexpression as well as RNAi-mediated knockdown of Rpd3 resulted in impairment of long-term courtship memory, suggesting that the dose of Rpd3 is critical for normal LTM.
Project description:Exposure to drug-related cues often disrupts abstinence from cocaine use by triggering memories of drug effects, leading to craving and possible relapse. One prospective method of treatment is weakening cocaine-associated memories via impairment of memory reconsolidation. Previous experiments have shown that systemic injection of the amnestic agent garcinol impairs the reconsolidation of cocaine-cue memories in a temporally constrained, cue-specific, and persistent manner. Here, we investigated garcinol's effect on cocaine-cue memory reconsolidation when administered to the lateral nucleus of the amygdala (LA), as well as its epigenetic activity following systemic garcinol administration and also when given in conjunction with trichostatin A (TSA), a histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitor. Rats received 12 days of cocaine self-administration training during which time an active lever press resulted in an i.v. cocaine infusion that was concurrently paired with the presentation of a light/tone cue. After 8 days of lever extinction, rats received a memory reactivation session followed by a cue-induced reinstatement test. Intra-LA garcinol following memory reactivation significantly impaired reconsolidation only if the memory was reactivated. Additional studies revealed a significant reduction in histone H3 K27 acetylation and reduced expression of the immediate-early genes Arc and Egr-1 in the LA. When administered alone, TSA enhanced the reinstatement of a cocaine-cue memory, an effect that was prevented when garcinol was concurrently administered. These data indicate the LA is a key structure responsive to garcinol, suggest that one of garcinol's mechanisms of action is through the reduction of memory-related gene expression in the LA, implicate changes in histone acetylation in memory reconsolidation, and support garcinol as a potential therapeutic tool for sustaining abstinence.
Project description:Nonspecific histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibition has been shown to facilitate the extinction of drug-seeking behavior in a manner resistant to reinstatement. A key open question is which specific HDAC is involved in the extinction of drug-seeking behavior. Using the selective HDAC3 inhibitor RGFP966, we investigated the role of HDAC3 in extinction and found that systemic treatment with RGFP966 facilitates extinction in mice in a manner resistant to reinstatement. We also investigated whether the facilitated extinction is related to the enhancement of extinction consolidation during extinction learning or to negative effects on performance or reconsolidation. These are key distinctions with regard to any compound being used to modulate extinction, because a more rapid decrease in a defined behavior is interpreted as facilitated extinction. Using an innovative combination of behavioral paradigms, we found that a single treatment of RGFP966 enhances extinction of a previously established cocaine-conditioned place preference, while simultaneously enhancing long-term object-location memory within subjects. During extinction consolidation, HDAC3 inhibition promotes a distinct pattern of histone acetylation linked to gene expression within the infralimbic cortex, hippocampus, and nucleus accumbens. Thus, the facilitated extinction of drug-seeking cannot be explained by adverse effects on performance. These results demonstrate that HDAC3 inhibition enhances the memory processes involved in extinction of drug-seeking behavior.
Project description:Insufficient sleep in individuals appears increasingly common due to the demands of modern work schedules and technology use. Consequently, there is a growing need to understand the interactions between sleep deprivation and memory. The current study determined the effects of acute sleep deprivation on short and long-term associative memory using the marine mollusk Aplysia californica, a relatively simple model system well known for studies of learning and memory.Aplysia were sleep deprived for 9 hours using context changes and tactile stimulation either prior to or after training for the operant learning paradigm, learning that food is inedible (LFI). The effects of sleep deprivation on short-term (STM) and long-term memory (LTM) were assessed.Acute sleep deprivation prior to LFI training impaired the induction of STM and LTM with persistent effects lasting at least 24 h. Sleep deprivation immediately after training blocked the consolidation of LTM. However, sleep deprivation following the period of molecular consolidation did not affect memory recall. Memory impairments were independent of handling-induced stress, as daytime handled control animals demonstrated no memory deficits. Additional training immediately after sleep deprivation failed to rescue the induction of memory, but additional training alleviated the persistent impairment in memory induction when training occurred 24 h following sleep deprivation.Acute sleep deprivation inhibited the induction and consolidation, but not the recall of memory. These behavioral studies establish Aplysia as an effective model system for studying the interactions between sleep and memory formation.
Project description:Consolidated memory can re-enter states of transient instability following reactivation, which is referred to as reconsolidation, and the exact molecular mechanisms underlying this process remain unexplored. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) plays a critical role in synaptic plasticity and memory processes. We have recently observed that BDNF signaling in the central nuclei of the amygdala (CeA) and insular cortex (IC) was involved in the consolidation of conditioned taste aversion (CTA) memory. However, whether BDNF in the CeA or IC is required for memory reconsolidation is still unclear. In the present study, using a CTA memory paradigm, we observed increased BDNF expression in the IC but not in the CeA during CTA reconsolidation. We further determined that BDNF synthesis and signaling in the IC but not in the CeA was required for memory reconsolidation. The differential, spatial-specific roles of BDNF in memory consolidation and reconsolidation suggest that dissociative molecular mechanisms underlie reconsolidation and consolidation, which might provide novel targets for manipulating newly encoded and reactivated memories without causing universal amnesia.
Project description:The superiority of spaced over massed learning is an established fact in the formation of long-term memories (LTM). Here we addressed the cellular processes and the temporal demands of this phenomenon using a weak spatial object recognition (wSOR) training, which induces short-term memories (STM) but not LTM. We observed SOR-LTM promotion when two identical wSOR training sessions were spaced by an inter-trial interval (ITI) ranging from 15?min to 7?h, consistently with spaced training. The promoting effect was dependent on neural activity, protein synthesis and ERKs1/2 activity in the hippocampus. Based on the "behavioral tagging" hypothesis, which postulates that learning induces a neural tag that requires proteins to induce LTM formation, we propose that retraining will mainly retag the sites initially labeled by the prior training. Thus, when weak, consecutive training sessions are experienced within an appropriate spacing, the intracellular mechanisms triggered by each session would add, thereby reaching the threshold for protein synthesis required for memory consolidation. Our results suggest in addition that ERKs1/2 kinases play a dual role in SOR-LTM formation after spaced learning, both inducing protein synthesis and setting the SOR learning-tag. Overall, our findings bring new light to the mechanisms underlying the promoting effect of spaced trials on LTM formation.
Project description:Memory consolidation is a dynamic process. Reactivation of consolidated memories triggers reconsolidation, a time-limited period during which memories can be modified. Episodic memory refers to our ability to recall specific past events about what happened, including where and when. However, it is unknown whether noninvasive stimulation of the neocortex during reconsolidation might strengthen existing episodic memories in humans. To modify these memories, we applied repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) over right lateral prefrontal cortex (PFC), a region involved in the reactivation of episodic memories. We report that rTMS of PFC after memory reactivation strengthened verbal episodic memories, an effect documented by improved recall 24 hr postreactivation compared to stimulation of PFC without reactivation and vertex (control site) after reactivation. In contrast, there was no effect of stimulation 1 hr postreactivation (control experiment), showing that memory strengthening is time dependent, consistent with the reconsolidation theory. Thus, we demonstrated that right lateral PFC plays a causal role in strengthening of episodic memories through reconsolidation in humans. Reconsolidation may serve as an opportunity to modify existing memories with noninvasive stimulation of a critical brain region, an issue of fundamental importance for memory research and clinical applications.
Project description:Histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors increase histone acetylation and enhance both memory and synaptic plasticity. The current model for the action of HDAC inhibitors assumes that they alter gene expression globally and thus affect memory processes in a nonspecific manner. Here, we show that the enhancement of hippocampus-dependent memory and hippocampal synaptic plasticity by HDAC inhibitors is mediated by the transcription factor cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB) and the recruitment of the transcriptional coactivator and histone acetyltransferase CREB-binding protein (CBP) via the CREB-binding domain of CBP. Furthermore, we show that the HDAC inhibitor trichostatin A does not globally alter gene expression but instead increases the expression of specific genes during memory consolidation. Our results suggest that HDAC inhibitors enhance memory processes by the activation of key genes regulated by the CREB:CBP transcriptional complex.
Project description:Memory consolidation refers to a process by which newly learned information is made resistant to disruption. Traditionally, consolidation has been viewed as an event that occurs once in the life of a memory. However, considerable evidence now indicates that consolidated memories, when reactivated through retrieval, become labile (susceptible to disruption) again and undergo reconsolidation. Because memories are often interrelated in complex associative networks rather than stored in isolation, a key question is whether reactivation of one memory makes associated memories labile in a way that requires reconsolidation. We tested this in rats by creating interlinked associative memories using a second-order fear-conditioning task. We found that directly reactivated memories become labile, but indirectly reactivated (i.e., associated) memories do not. This suggests that memory reactivation produces content-limited rather than wholesale changes in a memory and its associations and explains why each time a memory is retrieved and updated, the entire associative structure of the memory is not grossly altered.