Editors' ChoiceNeurobiology

Synaptic Modifications

Science's STKE  23 May 2000:
Vol. 2000, Issue 33, pp. tw9
DOI: 10.1126/stke.2000.33.tw9

In the hippocampus, pyramidal neurons receive multiple excitatory stimuli through thousands of synapses. Accumulation of translation machinery in postsynaptic cells has been observed after stimulation, but the function has remained elusive. Huber et al. examined the role of localized protein synthesis in generating changes in synaptic strength with stimulation. They found that protein synthesis in the postsynaptic cells modified synaptic transmission within minutes to create long-term depression of the synaptic contact. The finding has implications for the cellular mechanisms of information storage and memory.

Huber, K.M., Kayser, M.S., and Bear, M.F. (2000) Role for rapid dendritic protein synthesis in hippocampal mGluR-dependent long-term depression. Science 288: 1254-1256. [Abstract] [Full Text]