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The cellular basis of CS-US pairing efficacy for classical conditioning of Aplysia's withdrawal reflex: potential distribution of a Hebbian mechanism
Glanzman, D.L.; Lin, C.K. (1994). The cellular basis of CS-US pairing efficacy for classical conditioning of Aplysia's withdrawal reflex: potential distribution of a Hebbian mechanism. Neth. J. Zool. 44(3-4): 234-258
In: Netherlands Journal of Zoology. E.J. Brill: Leiden. ISSN 0028-2960, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Keyword
    Marine

Authors  Top 
  • Glanzman, D.L.
  • Lin, C.K.

Abstract
    The marine snail Aplysia californica exhibits a simple form of associative learning-classical conditioning of its defensive withdrawel reflex. Previous cellular analyses of this form of learning have suggested that it is due to a presynapticneuronal mechanism-activity-dependent presynaptic facilitation of the monosynaptic between the sensory and motor neurons which mediate the reflex. Classical conditioning of Aplysia's withdrawel reflex shares with many vertebrate conditioning preparations the property of temporal contguity: conditioning is best when the conditioned stimulus (CS) precedes the unconditioned stimulus (US) by a small temporal interval. The temporal contiguity of conditioning in Aplysia has been accounted for by a molecular model. Specifically, it has been proposed that Aplysia sensory neurons possess an adenlyl cyclase that is dually regulated by Ca2+ -which is elevated in the sensory neuron by the occurrence of the CS- and the facilitatory transmitter serotin (5-HT)- whose release is stimulated by the occurrence of the US. It has been further suggested that the activation of the adenylyl cyclase exhibits a temporal requirement: tha elevation of Ca2+ within the sensory neuron must precede the 5-HT stimulation for optimal activation of the cyclase. Recent data from our laboratory suggest that a postsynaptic mechanism -Hebbian potentiation of sensorimotor synapses- may mediate classical conditioning of Aplysia's withdrawel reflex. Here we summarize these data and suggest how Hebbian potentiation of sensorimotor synapses may play a role in the temporal contiguity of conditioning in Aplysia.

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