C-Rel, an NF-κB family transcription factor, is required for hippocampal long-term synaptic plasticity and memory formation

Hyung Jin Ahn, Caterina M. Hernandez, Jonathan M. Levenson, Farah D. Lubin, Hsiou Chi Liou, J. David Sweatt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

105 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Transcription is a critical component for consolidation of long-term memory. However, relatively few transcriptional mechanisms have been identified for the regulation of gene expression in memory formation. In the current study, we investigated the activity of one specific member of the NF-κB transcription factor family, c-Rel, during memory consolidation. We found that contextual fear conditioning elicited a time-dependent increase in nuclear c-Rel levels in area CA1 and DG of hippocampus. These results suggest that c-rel is active in regulating transcription during memory consolidation. To identify the functional role of c-Rel in memory formation, we characterized c-rel -/- mice in several behavioral tasks. c-rel-/- mice displayed significant deficits in freezing behavior 24 h after training for contextual fear conditioning but showed normal freezing behavior in cued fear conditioning and in short-term contextual fear conditioning. In a novel object recognition test, wild-type littermate mice exhibited a significant preference for a novel object, but c-rel-/- mice did not. These results indicate that c-rel-/- mice have impaired hippocampus-dependent memory formation. To investigate the role of c-Rel in long-term synaptic plasticity, baseline synaptic transmission and long-term potentiation (LTP) at Schaffer collateral synapses in c-rel-/- mice was assessed. c-rel -/- slices had normal baseline synaptic transmission but exhibited significantly less LTP than did wild-type littermate slices. Together, our results demonstrate that c-Rel is necessary for long-term synaptic potentiation in vitro and hippocampus-dependent memory formation in vivo.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)539-549
Number of pages11
JournalLearning and Memory
Volume15
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2008

Fingerprint

Neuronal Plasticity
Long-Term Memory
Transcription Factors
Fear
Long-Term Potentiation
Hippocampus
Synaptic Transmission
Freezing
Gene Expression Regulation
Synapses
Conditioning (Psychology)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience

Cite this

Ahn, H. J., Hernandez, C. M., Levenson, J. M., Lubin, F. D., Liou, H. C., & Sweatt, J. D. (2008). C-Rel, an NF-κB family transcription factor, is required for hippocampal long-term synaptic plasticity and memory formation. Learning and Memory, 15(7), 539-549. https://doi.org/10.1101/lm.866408

C-Rel, an NF-κB family transcription factor, is required for hippocampal long-term synaptic plasticity and memory formation. / Ahn, Hyung Jin; Hernandez, Caterina M.; Levenson, Jonathan M.; Lubin, Farah D.; Liou, Hsiou Chi; Sweatt, J. David.

In: Learning and Memory, Vol. 15, No. 7, 01.07.2008, p. 539-549.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Ahn, Hyung Jin ; Hernandez, Caterina M. ; Levenson, Jonathan M. ; Lubin, Farah D. ; Liou, Hsiou Chi ; Sweatt, J. David. / C-Rel, an NF-κB family transcription factor, is required for hippocampal long-term synaptic plasticity and memory formation. In: Learning and Memory. 2008 ; Vol. 15, No. 7. pp. 539-549.
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