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The Postsubiculum and Spatial Learning: The Role of Postsubicular Synaptic Activity and Synaptic Plasticity in Hippocampal Place Cell, Object, and Object-Location Memory

Citation
Bett D, Stevenson CH, Shires KL, Smith MT, Martin SJ, Dudchenko P & Wood ER (2013) The Postsubiculum and Spatial Learning: The Role of Postsubicular Synaptic Activity and Synaptic Plasticity in Hippocampal Place Cell, Object, and Object-Location Memory, Journal of Neuroscience, 33 (16), pp. 6928-6943.

Abstract
Visual landmarks exert stimulus control over spatial behavior and the spatially tuned firing of place, head-direction, and grid cells in the rodent. However, the neural site of convergence for representations of landmarks and representations of space has yet to be identified. A potential site of plasticity underlying associations with landmarks is the postsubiculum. To test this, we blocked glutamatergic transmission in the rat postsubiculum with CNQX, or NMDA receptor-dependent plasticity with d-AP5. These infusions were sufficient to block evoked potentials from the lateral dorsal thalamus and long-term depression following tetanization of this input to the postsubiculum, respectively. In a second experiment, CNQX disrupted the stability of rat hippocampal place cell fields in a familiar environment. In a novel environment, blockade of plasticity with d-AP5 in the postsubiculum did not block the formation of a stable place field map following a 6 h delay. In a final behavioral experiment, postsubicular infusions of both compounds blocked object-location memory in the rat, but did not affect object recognition memory. These results suggest that the postsubiculum is necessary for the recognition of familiar environments, and that NMDA receptor-dependent plasticity in the postsubiculum is required for the formation of new object-place associations that support recognition memory. However, plasticity in the postsubiculum is not necessary for the formation of new spatial maps.

StatusPublished
AuthorsBett David, Stevenson Cassie H, Shires Kate L, Smith Matthew T, Martin Steven J, Dudchenko Paul, Wood Emma R
Publication date17/04/2013
Date accepted by journal12/03/2013
PublisherSociety for Neuroscience
ISSN 0270-6474
LanguageEnglish

Journal
Journal of Neuroscience: Volume 33, Issue 16 (APR 17 2013)

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