design of enhanced learning protocols

Learning and memory are influenced by the temporal pattern of training stimuli. However, the mechanisms that determine the effectiveness of a particular training protocol are not well understood. We tested the hypothesis that the efficacy of a protocol is determined in part by interactions among biochemical cascades that underlie learning and memory. Previous findings suggest that the protein kinase A (PKA) and extracellular signal–regulated kinase (ERK) cascades are necessary to induce long-term synaptic facilitation (LTF) in Aplysia, a neuronal correlate of memory. We developed a computational model of the PKA and ERK cascades and used it to identify a training protocol that maximized PKA and ERK interactions. In vitro studies confirmed that the protocol enhanced LTF. Moreover, the protocol enhanced the levels of phosphorylation of the transcription factor CREB1. Behavioral training confirmed that long-term memory also was enhanced by the protocol. These results illustrate the feasibility of using computational models to design training protocols that improve memory.


One thought on “design of enhanced learning protocols

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s