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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Lesions of the nucleus basalis magnocellularis induced by 192 IgG-saporin block memory enhancement with posttraining norepinephrine in the basolateral amygdala.

Extensive evidence indicates that drugs and stress hormones act in the basolateral amygdala (BLA) to modulate memory consolidation. The BLA projects to the nucleus basalis magnocellularis (NBM), which sends broad cholinergic projections to the neocortex. NBM-cortex projections have been implicated in learning, memory storage, and plasticity. The current study investigated whether the cholinergic NBM-cortex projections are involved in BLA-mediated modulation of memory consolidation. Bilateral cholinergic cell lesions of the NBM were induced in rats with infusions of 192 IgG-saporin (0.1 microg/0.5 microl per side). Additionally, cannulae were implanted bilaterally in the BLA. One week after surgery, the rats were trained in an inhibitory avoidance task and, immediately after training, norepinephrine (0.3 microg, 1.0 microg, or 3.0 microg in 0.2 microl) or vehicle (PBS) was infused bilaterally into the BLA. Norepinephrine infusions produced a dose-dependent enhancement of 48-h retention (0.3 microg and 1.0 microg doses enhanced) in nonlesioned rats but did not affect retention in NBM-lesioned rats. Choline acetyltransferase assays of frontal and occipital cortices confirmed the NBM lesions. These findings indicate that cholinergic NBM-cortex projections are required for BLA-mediated modulation of memory consolidation.[1]


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