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Remapping of Adult-Born Neuron Activity during Fear Memory Consolidation in Mice

Mammalian Molecular DNA

Authors: Pablo Vergara, Deependra Kumar, Sakthivel Srinivasan, Iyo Koyanagi, Toshie Naoi, Sima Singh , Masanori Sakaguchi
Publication: International Journal of Molecular Sciences
Date: March 12, 2021
Link to article: https://www.mdpi.com/1422-0067/22/6/2874


The mammalian hippocampal dentate gyrus is a unique memory circuit in which a subset of neurons is continuously generated throughout the lifespan. Previous studies have shown that the dentate gyrus neuronal population can hold fear memory traces (i.e., engrams) and that adult-born neurons (ABNs) support this process. However, it is unclear whether ABNs themselves hold fear memory traces. Therefore, we analyzed ABN activity at a population level across a fear conditioning paradigm. We found that fear learning did not recruit a distinct ABN population. In sharp contrast, a completely different ABN population was recruited during fear memory retrieval. We further provide evidence that ABN population activity remaps over time during the consolidation period. These results suggest that ABNs support the establishment of a fear memory trace in a different manner to directly holding the memory. Moreover, this activity remapping process in ABNs may support the segregation of memories formed at different times. These results provide new insight into the role of adult neurogenesis in the mammalian memory system.

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