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Destiny of retrieved associative memories in vertebrates and invertebrates

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Jimena Berni.

Even though stored associative memories can last up to the entire animal’s life, they are not immutable. Retrieval can trigger two antagonistic memory processes. If retrieval is brief, the conditioned response is maintained through a process known as reconsolidation. On the contrary, a prolonged reminder will trigger memory extinction and a long-lasting inhibition of the original conditioned response. Both reconsolidation and extinction are universally conserved processes present all along the Animal Kingdom. Based on behavioural, pharmacological and molecular data obtained from crabs and rats, I will discuss the evidence indicating that: 1) specific mechanisms support persistence or inhibition of the original memory, and 2) reconsolidation and extinction are mutually exclusive processes, separated by an insensitive or ‘limbo’ period.

This talk is part of the Neurons, Brains and Behaviour symposium series.

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