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Neuropharmacology. 1998 Apr-May;37(4-5):553-9.

A role for BDNF in the late-phase of hippocampal long-term potentiation.

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Max-Planck-Instituti of Neurobiology, Munich-Martinsried, Germany.


The neurotrophin family of growth factors has received enormous attention recently for its role in modulating synaptic strength in the developing and adult nervous system. Several recent studies have indicated a role for brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in long-term potentiation (LTP), a form of long-lasting plasticity observed at synapses in the hippocampus and other brain areas. The late-phase (L-LTP; e.g. > 2 h) of LTP has been shown to require the synthesis of new proteins. We have examined whether BDNF or other TrkB ligands participate in L-LTP in two ways: by examining transgenic mice which lack BDNF or by acutely blocking TrkB function using function-blocking antibodies. Slices from BDNF knock-out animals or slices treated with TrkB antibodies failed to exhibit L-LTP, indicating that TrkB ligands participate in extending synaptic enhancement from a short-lasting to a long-lasting form.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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