Long-term memory, when discussed in the context of synaptic consolidation, is memory that lasts for at least 24 hours.An exception to this 24-hour rule is long-term potentiation, or LTP, a model of synaptic plasticity related to learning, in which an hour is thought to be sufficient.Disruptions caused by specific drugs, antibodies and gross physical trauma can block the effects of synaptic consolidation.and is known to produce increases in the neurotransmitter production and receptor sensitivity, lasting minutes to even days.Distributed learning has been found to enhance memory consolidation, specifically for relational memory.Experimental results suggest that distributing learning over the course of 24 hours decreases the rate of forgetting compared to massed learning, and enhances relational memory consolidation.Studies have shown that protein synthesis inhibitors administered after learning, weaken memory, suggesting that protein synthesis is required for memory consolidation.Additionally, reports have suggested that the effects of protein synthesis inhibitors also inhibit LTP.
Meanwhile, neuropharmacological studies of selected brain areas began to shed light on the molecules possibly responsible for fast consolidation.
and occurs within the first few hours after learning, and systems consolidation, where hippocampus-dependent memories become independent of the hippocampus over a period of weeks to years.
Recently, a third process has become the focus of research, reconsolidation, in which previously consolidated memories can be made labile again through reactivation of the memory trace.
This change can occur as quickly as a couple hours after the memory has been encoded suggesting that there is a temporal dimension to the reorganization of the memory as it is represented in the brain.
is one form of memory consolidation seen across all species and long-term memory tasks.
Search for and consolidating:
When interpreted in the context of synaptic consolidation, mechanisms of synaptic strengthening may depend on the spacing of memory reactivation to allow sufficient time for protein synthesis to occur, and thereby strengthen long-term memory.