HOME >> MEDICINE >> NEWS
Picking apart how neurons learn

Johns Hopkins researchers have used mouse mutants to define critical steps involved in learning basic motor skills. The study focuses on the behavior of two proteins and the specific steps they take to control a neuron's ability to learn by adapting to signals from other nerve cells.

The findings, published in the March 16 issue of Neuron, pull together a growing body of evidence from the field. The study shows definitively that interactions between the PICK1 protein and another group of proteins known as AMPA receptors are critical for specific neurons, called Purkinje cells, in the lower back part of the brain to become de-sensitized to certain molecular signals.

Desensitization to molecular signals from neighboring neurons - a process known as long-term depression, or LTD - is thought to be responsible for several forms of motor learning, one of which is known as the vestibulo-ocular reflex. The vestibulo-ocular reflex coordinates eye movements with head movements, allowing us to perform activities such as reading in a moving automobile.

"We've long known that LTD underlies responses like the vestibulo-ocular reflex. This study gets at the heart of how LTD occurs, specifically how PICK1 controls the Purkinje cell's response to the signaling molecule, glutamate," says Richard L. Huganir, Ph.D., a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator and chair of the Solomon H. Snyder Department of Neuroscience at Hopkins.

The first critical step in establishing LTD happens when Purkinje cells swallow up surface proteins called AMPA receptors. Without AMPA receptors on the surface, these cells no longer are able to respond to signals from neighboring neurons. Researchers had known that PICK1 somehow was involved in the swallowing and removal of AMPA receptors, but only in this most recent study did they reveal how.

The investigators used individual nerve cells as well as brain slices from three different populations of genetically
'"/>

Contact: Audrey Huang
audrey@jhmi.edu
410-614-5105
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions
29-Mar-2006


Page: 1 2

Related medicine news :

1. Huge waves from 1 storm slam coasts some 6000 km apart
2. Study suggests loss of 2 types of neurons -- not just 1 -- triggers Parkinsons symptoms
3. Nanowire arrays can detect signals along individual neurons
4. Different forms of amyloid beta in Alzheimers disease harm neurons in different ways
5. UCLA researchers discover how drug binds to neurons to stop drunken symptoms of alcohol
6. Agent protects Parkinsons neurons from rotenone toxicity
7. New neurons take baby steps in the adult brain
8. Specialized neurons allow the brain to focus on novel sounds
9. Louder neurons form more connections, Stanford research shows
10. Smart mice teach scientists about learning process, brain disorders
11. Next generation of Latino drug abuse experts at UH to learn, teach

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
TAG: Picking apart how neurons learn

(Date:4/24/2014)... Foundation has awarded LSU Health Sciences Center New ... grant in the amount of $295,635. The funding ... social and educational backgrounds, underrepresented in the sciences, ... project will provide students with training for 10 ... will be led by Principal Investigator Dr. Fern ...
(Date:4/23/2014)... TORONTO, April 24, 2014 Pregnant immigrants from ... require increased monitoring during pregnancy, according to new ... published today in the British Journal of ... preeclampsia and eclampsia rates among immigrants and native-born ... Canada (Ontario), Denmark, Sweden, Spain (Catalonia and Valencia) ...
(Date:4/23/2014)... American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) has issued ... Therapy for Endometrial Cancer: An ASTRO Evidence-Based Guideline," ... in the treatment of endometrial cancer. The guideline,s ... issue of Practical Radiation Oncology (PRO), ... full-length guideline is available as an open-access article ...
(Date:4/23/2014)... of the gastro-intestinal tract has long been considered to ... the Sahlgrenska Academy have used refined microscopic techniques that ... surface of the gastro-intestinal tract is only as large ... , The digestive tract, which passes from the mouth ... a length of about 5 meters in a normal ...
(Date:4/23/2014)... the potential health benefits of probiotics, antioxidants and other ... And the chemical industry is getting in on the ... deter growth, so the industry is responding with clinical ... cover story in Chemical & Engineering News ... Society. , Melody M. Bomgardner, a senior editor at ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):Health News:Pregnancy complications may be more common in immigrants from certain regions 2Health News:ASTRO issues guideline on the role of postoperative radiation therapy for endometrial cancer 2Health News:ASTRO issues guideline on the role of postoperative radiation therapy for endometrial cancer 3Health News:The surface area of the digestive tract 'only' as large as a studio apartment 2
(Date:1/15/2014)... Most osteoporosis patients want a choice in the medication ... by Mission Pharmacal Company. The survey, conducted by ... community, revealed that 74 percent of osteoporosis patients surveyed ... other than a pill or a tablet. ...
(Date:1/15/2014)... , Jan. 15, 2014  Novation, the leading health ... several new IT value-added reseller (VAR) national contracts that ... goods and services at lower costs. These include manufacturer ... such as initiative assistance and ongoing IT consulting support. ...
(Date:1/15/2014)...  Humberto C. Antunes,  Galderma  worldwide CEO, will receive a ... of Drugs in Dermatology (JDD) at the upcoming ... is January 17-20, 2014, at the Omni Orlando Resort at ChampionsGate ... The ODAC is a distinguished event that delivers a ...
Breaking Medicine Technology:Mission Pharmacal Conducts Online Survey of Osteoporosis Patients 2Mission Pharmacal Conducts Online Survey of Osteoporosis Patients 3New Novation Information Technology VAR Contracts Offer Significant Savings to Hospitals 2Galderma's global leader honored with a "Lifetime in Dermatology Achievement Award" by Journal of Drugs in Dermatology 2Galderma's global leader honored with a "Lifetime in Dermatology Achievement Award" by Journal of Drugs in Dermatology 3Galderma's global leader honored with a "Lifetime in Dermatology Achievement Award" by Journal of Drugs in Dermatology 4
Cached News: