Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) expressed in the medial prefrontal cortex have critical roles in cognitive function. However, whether nAChRs are required for associative recognition memory and the mechanisms by which nAChRs may contribute to mnemonic processing are not known. We demonstrate that nAChRs in the prefrontal cortex exhibit subtype-specific roles in associative memory encoding and retrieval. We present evidence that these separate roles of nAChRs may rely on bidirectional modulation of plasticity at synaptic inputs to the prefrontal cortex that are essential for associative recognition memory. Sabec et al. reveal a divergence in function of prefrontal nicotinic receptor subtypes in different stages of long-term associative recognition memory that relates to bidirectional modulation of synaptic plasticity at hippocampal-prefrontal synapses.
- associative recognition memory
- medial prefrontal cortex
- nicotinic receptor
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)