+1 Recommend
0 collections
      • Record: found
      • Abstract: found
      • Article: found
      Is Open Access

      Searching basic units in memory traces: associative memory cells

      a , 1


      F1000 Research Limited

      Associative memory cell, synapse, neuron, learning, memory trace, cognition, brain

      Read this article at

          There is no author summary for this article yet. Authors can add summaries to their articles on ScienceOpen to make them more accessible to a non-specialist audience.


          The acquisition of associated signals is commonly seen in life. The integrative storage of these exogenous and endogenous signals is essential for cognition, emotion and behaviors. In terms of basic units of memory traces or engrams, associative memory cells are recruited in the brain during learning, cognition and emotional reactions. The recruitment and refinement of associative memory cells facilitate the retrieval of memory-relevant events and the learning of reorganized unitary signals that have been acquired. The recruitment of associative memory cells is fulfilled by generating mutual synapse innervations among them in coactivated brain regions. Their axons innervate downstream neurons convergently and divergently to recruit secondary associative memory cells. Mutual synapse innervations among associative memory cells confer the integrative storage and reciprocal retrieval of associated signals. Their convergent synapse innervations to secondary associative memory cells endorse integrative cognition. Their divergent innervations to secondary associative memory cells grant multiple applications of associated signals. Associative memory cells in memory traces are defined to be nerve cells that are able to encode multiple learned signals and receive synapse innervations carrying these signals. An impairment in the recruitment and refinement of associative memory cells will lead to the memory deficit associated with neurological diseases and psychological disorders. This review presents a comprehensive diagram for the recruitment and refinement of associative memory cells for memory-relevant events in a lifetime.

          Related collections

          Most cited references 216

          • Record: found
          • Abstract: found
          • Article: not found

          A synaptic model of memory: long-term potentiation in the hippocampus.

          Long-term potentiation of synaptic transmission in the hippocampus is the primary experimental model for investigating the synaptic basis of learning and memory in vertebrates. The best understood form of long-term potentiation is induced by the activation of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor complex. This subtype of glutamate receptor endows long-term potentiation with Hebbian characteristics, and allows electrical events at the postsynaptic membrane to be transduced into chemical signals which, in turn, are thought to activate both pre- and postsynaptic mechanisms to generate a persistent increase in synaptic strength.
            • Record: found
            • Abstract: found
            • Article: not found

            Why there are complementary learning systems in the hippocampus and neocortex: insights from the successes and failures of connectionist models of learning and memory.

            Damage to the hippocampal system disrupts recent memory but leaves remote memory intact. The account presented here suggests that memories are first stored via synaptic changes in the hippocampal system, that these changes support reinstatement of recent memories in the neocortex, that neocortical synapses change a little on each reinstatement, and that remote memory is based on accumulated neocortical changes. Models that learn via changes to connections help explain this organization. These models discover the structure in ensembles of items if learning of each item is gradual and interleaved with learning about other items. This suggests that the neocortex learns slowly to discover the structure in ensembles of experiences. The hippocampal system permits rapid learning of new items without disrupting this structure, and reinstatement of new memories interleaves them with others to integrate them into structured neocortical memory systems.
              • Record: found
              • Abstract: found
              • Article: not found

              An integrative theory of locus coeruleus-norepinephrine function: adaptive gain and optimal performance.

              Historically, the locus coeruleus-norepinephrine (LC-NE) system has been implicated in arousal, but recent findings suggest that this system plays a more complex and specific role in the control of behavior than investigators previously thought. We review neurophysiological and modeling studies in monkey that support a new theory of LC-NE function. LC neurons exhibit two modes of activity, phasic and tonic. Phasic LC activation is driven by the outcome of task-related decision processes and is proposed to facilitate ensuing behaviors and to help optimize task performance (exploitation). When utility in the task wanes, LC neurons exhibit a tonic activity mode, associated with disengagement from the current task and a search for alternative behaviors (exploration). Monkey LC receives prominent, direct inputs from the anterior cingulate (ACC) and orbitofrontal cortices (OFC), both of which are thought to monitor task-related utility. We propose that these frontal areas produce the above patterns of LC activity to optimize utility on both short and long timescales.

                Author and article information

                Role: ConceptualizationRole: Data CurationRole: Formal AnalysisRole: Funding AcquisitionRole: InvestigationRole: MethodologyRole: Project AdministrationRole: ResourcesRole: SoftwareRole: SupervisionRole: ValidationRole: VisualizationRole: Writing – Original Draft PreparationRole: Writing – Review & Editing
                F1000 Research Limited (London, UK )
                12 April 2019
                : 8
                [1 ]College of Life Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, 100049, China
                [1 ]Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University , Chicago, IL, USA
                [1 ]Laboratory of Neuropsychiatric Diseases, Institute of Brain Research, Collaborative Innovation Center for Brain Science, Huazhong University of Science and Technology (HUST), Wuhan, China
                [2 ]Department of Pharmacology, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology (HUST), Wuhan, China
                [1 ]Department of Anesthesiology, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC, USA
                Author notes

                No competing interests were disclosed.

                Competing interests: No competing interests were disclosed.

                Competing interests: No competing interests were disclosed.

                Competing interests: No competing interests were disclosed.

                Copyright: © 2019 Wang JH

                This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Licence, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

                Funded by: National Natural Science Foundation of China
                Award ID: 81671071
                Funded by: National Basic Research Program of China (973 Program)
                Award ID: 2016YFC1307100
                This study is funded by National Key R&D Program of China (2016YFC1307100) and Natural Science Foundation China (81671071) to JHW
                The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.


                Comment on this article