Overlapping memory trace indispensable for linking, but not recalling, individual memories

Jun Yokose, Reiko Okubo-Suzuki, Masanori Nomoto, Noriaki Ohkawa, Hirofumi Nishizono, Akinobu Suzuki, Mina Matsuo, Shuhei Tsujimura, Yukari Takahashi, Masashi Nagase, Ayako M. Watabe, Masakiyo Sasahara, Fusao Kato, Kaoru Inokuchi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Scopus citations


Memories are not stored in isolation from other memories but are integrated into associative networks. However, the mechanisms underlying memory association remain elusive. Using two amygdala-dependent behavioral paradigms-conditioned taste aversion (CTA) and auditory-cued fear conditioning (AFC)-in mice, we found that presenting the conditioned stimulus used for the CTA task triggered the conditioned response of the AFC task after natural coreactivation of the memories. This was accompanied through an increase in the overlapping neuronal ensemble in the basolateral amygdala. Silencing of the overlapping ensemble suppressed CTA retrieval-induced freezing. However, retrieval of the original CTA or AFC memory was not affected. A small population of coshared neurons thus mediates the link between memories. They are not necessary for recalling individual memories.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)398-403
Number of pages6
JournalScience (New York, N.Y.)
Issue number6323
StatePublished - Jan 27 2017
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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