A Role for the PI-3 kinase signaling pathway in fear conditioning and synaptic plasticity in the amygdala

Chih Hung Lin, Shiu Hwa Yeh, Chia Ho Lin, Kwok Tung Lu, Tzeng Horng Leu, Wen Chang Chang, Po Wu Gean

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

297 Citations (Scopus)


Western blot analysis of neuronal tissues taken from fear-conditioned rats showed a selective activation of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI-3 kinase) in the amygdala. PI-3 kinase was also activated in response to long-term potentiation (LTP)-inducing tetanic stimulation. PI-3 kinase inhibitors blocked tetanus-induced LTP as well as PI-3 kinase activation. In parallel, these inhibitors interfered with long-term fear memory while leaving short-term memory intact. Tetanus and forskolin-induced activation of mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) was blocked by PI-3 kinase inhibitors, which also inhibited cAMP response element binding protein (CREB) phosphorylation. These results provide novel evidence of a requirement of PI-3 kinase activation in the amygdala for synaptic plasticity and memory consolidation, and this activation may occur at a point upstream of MAPK activation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)841-851
Number of pages11
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Sep 13 2001
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

Cite this