Conditioned taste aversion (CTA) can be classically conditioned in the pond snail Lymnaea stagnalis and subsequently be consolidated into long-term memory (LTM). The neural trace that subserves CTA-LTM can be summarized as follows: A polysynaptic inhibitory postsynaptic potential recorded in the neuron 1 medial (N1M) cell in the conditioned snails as a result of activation of the cerebral giant cell (CGC) is larger and lasts longer than that in control snails. The N1M cell is ultimately activated by the CGC via the neuron 3 tonic (N3t) cell. That is, the inhibitory monosynaptic inputs from the N3t cell to the N1M cell are facilitated. The N1M and N3t cells are the members of feeding central pattern generator, whereas the CGC is a multimodal interneuron thought to play a key role in feeding behavior. Here we examined the involvement of a second messenger, cAMP, in the establishment of the memory trace. We injected cAMP into the CGC and monitored the potentials of the B3 motor neuron activated by the CGC. B3 activity is used as an index for the synaptic inputs from the N3t cell to the N1M cell. We found that the B3 potentials were transiently enlarged. Thus, when the cAMP concentration is increased in the CGC by taste aversion training, cAMP-induced changes may play a key role in the establishment of a memory trace in the N3t cell.
2013 THE BIOPHYSICAL SOCIETY OF JAPAN