Fleeting Memories

Science's STKE  21 Aug 2007:
Vol. 2007, Issue 400, pp. tw303
DOI: 10.1126/stke.4002007tw303

How persistent is our memory, how is it maintained, and how can it be disrupted? It has recently been shown that PKMζ, a protein kinase C isoform, is critical for maintaining hippocampus-dependent spatial memory and long-term potentiation. Using a conditioning taste aversion paradigm, Shema et al. (see the news story by Miller) found that long-term memory could be erased by infusion of a PKMζ inhibitor, ZIP, into the insular cortex. The activity of PKMζ was specifically involved in the storage of memories but not in their acquisition.

R. Shema, T. C. Sacktor, Y. Dudai, Rapid erasure of long-term memory associations in the cortex by an inhibitor of PKMζ. Science 317, 951-953 (2007). [Abstract] [Full Text]

G. Miller, Enzyme keeps old memories alive. Science 317, 883 (2007). [Summary] [Full Text]