Author(s): White AO, Wood MA, White AO, Wood MA
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Abstract It has been known for numerous decades that gene expression is required for long-lasting forms of memory. In the past decade, the study of epigenetic mechanisms in memory processes has revealed yet another layer of complexity in the regulation of gene expression. Epigenetic mechanisms do not only provide complexity in the protein regulatory complexes that control coordinate transcription for specific cell function, but the epigenome encodes critical information that integrates experience and cellular history for specific cell functions as well. Thus, epigenetic mechanisms provide a unique mechanism of gene expression regulation for memory processes. This may be why critical negative regulators of gene expression, such as histone deacetylases (HDACs), have powerful effects on the formation and persistence of memory. For example, HDAC inhibition has been shown to transform a subthreshold learning event into robust long-term memory and also generate a form of long-term memory that persists beyond the point at which normal long-term memory fails. A key question that is explored in this review, from a learning and memory perspective, is whether stress-dependent signaling drives the formation and persistence of long-term memory via HDAC-dependent mechanisms. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
This article was published in Neurobiol Learn Mem
and referenced in Journal of Alzheimers Disease & Parkinsonism