A clustered plasticity model of long-term memory engrams

Nat Rev Neurosci. 2006 Jul;7(7):575-83. doi: 10.1038/nrn1937.


Long-term memory and its putative synaptic correlates the late phases of both long-term potentiation and long-term depression require enhanced protein synthesis. On the basis of recent data on translation-dependent synaptic plasticity and on the supralinear effect of activation of nearby synapses on action potential generation, we propose a model for the formation of long-term memory engrams at the single neuron level. In this model, which we call clustered plasticity, local translational enhancement, along with synaptic tagging and capture, facilitates the formation of long-term memory engrams through bidirectional synaptic weight changes among synapses within a dendritic branch.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cluster Analysis*
  • Humans
  • Memory / physiology*
  • Neural Networks, Computer*
  • Neuronal Plasticity / physiology*