Transcription Factors CREB and NF-kB: Involvement in Synaptic Plasticity and Memory Formation

Roles for NF-κB in Regulating Gene Expression in Synaptic Plasticity and Memory

Author(s): Gary Odero, Wanda Snow, Kunjumon Vadakkan and Benedict C. Albensi

Pp: 66-78 (13)

DOI: 10.2174/978160805257811201010066

* (Excluding Mailing and Handling)


Changing the strength of synaptic connections between neurons is a process by which memory traces are encoded and stored in the nervous system. Evidence to date suggests that long term memory encoding and storage are dependent on mRNA translation and protein synthesis. Studies over the years have identified key signaling molecules involved in processes of protein synthesis in contexts of long term memory. Transcription factors, such as cAMP response element binding (CREB) protein, CCAAT/enhancer binding protein (C/EBP), early growth response (Egr) protein, activator protein 1 (AP-1), and nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB) have been hypothesized to play roles in memory suggesting that these molecules function as part of a sophisticated response for processes of protein synthesis in long term memory. Previous studies have shown roles for some of these proteins in CNS disorders, where a rapidly growing literature supports the involvement of NF-κB, not only in neurodegenerative conditions, but also in synaptic plasticity and memory.

Keywords: NF-kB, synaptic plasticity, memory, TNF, transcription factor, gene expression, Egr, translation, transcription, neuron, hippocampus, LTP, LTD.

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