Anterograde and retrograde signaling by an Aplysia neurotrophin forms a transsynaptic functional unit

Iksung Jin, Hiroshi Udo, Stefan Kassabov, Stylianos Kosmidis, Huixiang Zhu, Eric R. Kandel, Robert D. Hawkins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Whereas short-term synaptic plasticity is often either pre- or postsynaptic, intermediate- and long-term plasticity generally require coordinated pre- and postsynaptic mechanisms. Thus, the transition from presynaptic short-term facilitation (STF) to intermediate-term facilitation (ITF) induced by 5HT at Aplysia sensory-to-motor neuron synapses requires the recruitment of postsynaptic mechanisms and activation of protein synthesis in both neurons. In the companion paper to this report, we found that presynaptic autocrine signaling by an Aplysia neurotrophin (ApNT) forms a positive feedback loop that drives the synapses from STF to ITF. Here we report that ApNT also acts through both anterograde and retrograde signaling to form a transsynaptic positive feedback loop that orchestrates cellular functions in both the presynaptic and postsynaptic neurons during the induction of ITF. These two feedback loops activate protein synthesis in each synaptic compartment, which in both cases depends on signaling from the other synaptic compartment. These results suggest that the pre- and postsynaptic compartments act as one functional unit during the consolidation of learning-related facilitation induced by 5HT.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)E10951-E10960
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number46
Publication statusPublished - Nov 13 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General


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