Classical and operant conditioning differentially modify the intrinsic properties of an identified neuron

Nat Neurosci. 2006 Jan;9(1):17-9. doi: 10.1038/nn1593. Epub 2005 Nov 27.


A long-standing debate in neuroscience is whether classical and operant conditioning are mechanistically similar or distinct. The feeding behavior of Aplysia provides a model system suitable for addressing this question. Here we report that classical and operant conditioning of feeding behavior differentially modify the intrinsic excitability of neuron B51, a critical element for the expression of the feeding response, thus revealing that these two forms of associative learning differ at the cellular level.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Aplysia / physiology*
  • Appetite / physiology
  • Conditioning, Classical / physiology*
  • Conditioning, Operant / physiology*
  • Evoked Potentials / physiology
  • Ganglia, Invertebrate / cytology
  • Ganglia, Invertebrate / physiology
  • Neurons / physiology*