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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2015 Mar 17;112(11):3541-6. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1413798112. Epub 2015 Mar 3.

Modeling memory consolidation during posttraining periods in cerebellovestibular learning.

Author information

Graduate School of Informatics and Engineering, and
Brain Science Promotion Division, RIKEN Brain Science Institute, Wako, Saitama 351-0198, Japan; and.
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA 92093.
Brain Science Inspired Life Support Research Center, The University of Electro-Communications, Chofu, Tokyo 182-8585, Japan;


Long-term depression (LTD) at parallel fiber-Purkinje cell (PF-PC) synapses is thought to underlie memory formation in cerebellar motor learning. Recent experimental results, however, suggest that multiple plasticity mechanisms in the cerebellar cortex and cerebellar/vestibular nuclei participate in memory formation. To examine this possibility, we formulated a simple model of the cerebellum with a minimal number of components based on its known anatomy and physiology, implementing both LTD and long-term potentiation (LTP) at PF-PC synapses and mossy fiber-vestibular nuclear neuron (MF-VN) synapses. With this model, we conducted a simulation study of the gain adaptation of optokinetic response (OKR) eye movement. Our model reproduced several important aspects of previously reported experimental results in wild-type and cerebellum-related gene-manipulated mice. First, each 1-h training led to the formation of short-term memory of learned OKR gain at PF-PC synapses, which diminished throughout the day. Second, daily repetition of the training gradually formed long-term memory that was maintained for days at MF-VN synapses. We reproduced such memory formation under various learning conditions. Third, long-term memory formation occurred after training but not during training, indicating that the memory consolidation occurred during posttraining periods. Fourth, spaced training outperformed massed training in long-term memory formation. Finally, we reproduced OKR gain changes consistent with the changes in the vestibuloocular reflex (VOR) previously reported in some gene-manipulated mice.


Marr–Albus–Ito theory; cerebellum; memory consolidation; plasticity; posttraining period

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