Dissociation between complete hippocampal context memory formation and context fear acquisition

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Learning and Memory, 2017, 24 (4), pp. 153 - 157
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© 2017 Leake et al. Rodents require a minimal time period to explore a context prior to footshock to display plateau-level context fear at test. To investigate whether this rapid fear plateau reflects complete memory formation within that short time-frame, we used the immediate-early gene product Arc as an indicator of hippocampal context memory formation-related activity. We found that hippocampal Arc expression continued to increase well past the minimal time required for plateau-level fear. This raises the possibility that context fear conditioning occurs more rapidly than complete memory formation. Thus, animals may be able to condition robustly to both complete and incomplete contextual representations.
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