Why can our brains learn and memorize? - Comprehensive understanding of expression mechanism of long-term potentiation and long-term depression of hippocampal excitatory synaptic strength -


The long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) of the strength of hippocampal excitatory synapse involved in learning and memory formation in brain have been separately explained, but the molecular mechanism that comprehensively explains them has not been elucidated. Associate Professor Dr. Tomonari Sumi, Research Institute for Interdisciplinary Science, and Assistant Professor Dr. Kouji Harada, Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Toyohashi University of Technology focused on the competition of exocytosis and endocytosis of AMPA-type glutamate receptors dependent on the number of calcium ions that flow into the postsynapse of hippocampal excitatory neurons, and demonstrated the comprehensive understanding of the LTP and LTD by a large-scale mathematical model simulation.

Figure 1. AMPAR transport system in postsynapse reproducing LPT/LTD of hippocampal excitatory neurons.