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Layman (Cog Sci Person) seeks explanation

Carmen N. Nichols sarnicol at reading.ac.uk
Mon Jun 19 04:37:35 EST 1995

The best current literature, and I think in such a fast moving field the 
current literature is the best as opinions change very fast in this 
highly contenscious field, is as follows.

Okay, a good general introduction to learning/memory and LTP is Bliss & 
Collingridge (1993) in Nature.

More recently, on the role of LTP in learning dependant plasticity and 
developmental plasticity check out the last five weeks nature.  Approx 4 
weeks ago in Nature were two papers on the role of LTP during the 
critical period for developmental plasticity of mouse visual cortex and 
rat mechanosensory bristles.  About three weeks ago was a post-synaptic 
model for the origin of hippocampal LTP (hypothesised as underlying 
learning/memory).  These three papers themselves should give you plenty 
to work with in the way of references.  Otherwise look up LTP on Medline 
or a similar reference database.

More specifically, for the role of LTP in learning/memory look up papers 
by Kandel, Nicoll (mostly physiology), Malenka, or Tonegawa (knockouts 
and their effect on LTP).  

What it is most important to remember however is that LTP is only 
causally associated with learning/memory.  All knockouts that show 
deficiency in learning/memory do not necessarily show a defect in LTP 
(for example PKC knockout).  Is some other form of plasticity involved?  
The answer is probably yes, look up Long Term Depression, not many papers 
but they are about.

Martin Cann

sarnicol at reading.ac.uk

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