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Curr Opin Neurobiol. 2011 Aug;21(4):609-15. doi: 10.1016/j.conb.2011.06.011. Epub 2011 Jul 20.

Synaptic mechanisms of sensorimotor learning in the cerebellum.

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Neural Circuits and Behavior Laboratory, Champalimaud Neuroscience Programme, Champalimaud Centre for the Unknown, Av. Brasília, Doca de Pedrouços, 1400-038 Lisboa, Portugal.


The cerebellum plays an essential role in motor learning. The ability to identify specific sensory and motor signals carried by neurons with known connectivity makes the cerebellum an attractive system for investigating how synaptic plasticity relates to learning. Early studies focused primarily on a single form of plasticity, long-term depression at parallel fiber-Purkinje cell synapses. Recent work has highlighted both the diversity of synaptic plasticity that exists within the cerebellum and the fact that individual plasticity mechanisms can have unexpected consequences when they act within neural circuits.

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