Differential involvement of amygdala and cortical NMDA receptors activation upon encoding in odor fear memory

Learn Mem. 2014 Nov 17;21(12):651-5. doi: 10.1101/lm.036558.114. Print 2014 Dec.


Although the basolateral amygdala (BLA) plays a crucial role for the acquisition of fear memories, sensory cortices are involved in their long-term storage in rats. However, the time course of their respective involvement has received little investigation. Here we assessed the role of the glutamatergic N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptors in the BLA and olfactory cortex at discrete moments of an odor fear conditioning session. We showed that NMDA receptors in BLA are critically involved in odor fear acquisition during the first association but not during the next ones. In the cortex, NMDA receptor activation at encoding is not necessary for recent odor fear memory while its role in remote memory storage needs further investigation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • 2-Amino-5-phosphonovalerate / pharmacology
  • Animals
  • Association Learning / physiology
  • Basolateral Nuclear Complex / drug effects
  • Basolateral Nuclear Complex / physiology*
  • Catheters, Indwelling
  • Electroshock
  • Excitatory Amino Acid Antagonists / pharmacology
  • Fear / drug effects
  • Fear / physiology*
  • Glutamic Acid / metabolism
  • Male
  • Memory / drug effects
  • Memory / physiology*
  • Odorants
  • Olfactory Cortex / physiology*
  • Olfactory Perception / drug effects
  • Olfactory Perception / physiology*
  • Physical Stimulation
  • Rats, Long-Evans
  • Receptors, N-Methyl-D-Aspartate / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Receptors, N-Methyl-D-Aspartate / metabolism*


  • Excitatory Amino Acid Antagonists
  • Receptors, N-Methyl-D-Aspartate
  • Glutamic Acid
  • 2-Amino-5-phosphonovalerate