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Science 317 (5840): 951-953

Copyright © 2007 by the American Association for the Advancement of Science

Rapid Erasure of Long-Term Memory Associations in the Cortex by an Inhibitor of PKM{zeta}

Reut Shema,1 Todd Charlton Sacktor,2 Yadin Dudai1*

Abstract: Little is known about the neuronal mechanisms that subserve long-term memory persistence in the brain. The components of the remodeled synaptic machinery, and how they sustain the new synaptic or cellwide configuration over time, are yet to be elucidated. In the rat cortex, long-term associative memories vanished rapidly after local application of an inhibitor of the protein kinase C isoform, protein kinase M zeta (PKM{zeta}). The effect was observed for at least several weeks after encoding and may be irreversible. In the neocortex, which is assumed to be the repository of multiple types of long-term memory, persistence of memory is thus dependent on ongoing activity of a protein kinase long after that memory is considered to have consolidated into a long-term stable form.

1 Department of Neurobiology, The Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot 76100, Israel.
2 Departments of Physiology, Pharmacology, and Neurology, The Robert F. Furchgott Center for Neural and Behavioral Science, SUNY Downstate Medical Center, 450 Clarkson Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11203, USA.

* To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: yadin.dudai{at}

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