Flavor preference learning increases olfactory and gustatory convergence onto single neurons in the basolateral amygdala but not in the insular cortex in rats.
PLoS ONE. 2010-04-09; 5(4): e10097
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1. PLoS One. 2010 Apr 9;5(4):e10097. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0010097.
Flavor preference learning increases olfactory and gustatory convergence onto
single neurons in the basolateral amygdala but not in the insular cortex in rats.
Desgranges B(1), Ramirez-Amaya V, Ricaño-Cornejo I, Lévy F, Ferreira G.
(1)Laboratoire de Comportement, Neurobiologie et Adaptation, INRA UMR 85, CNRS
UMR 6175, Université Tours, Nouzilly, France.
The basolateral amygdala (BLA) and the insular cortex (IC) represent two major
areas for odor-taste associations, i.e. flavor integration. This learning may
require the development of convergent odor and taste neuronal activation allowing
the memory representation of such association. Yet identification of neurons that
respond to such coincident input and the effect of flavor experience on
odor-taste convergence remain unclear. In the present study we used the
compartmental analysis of temporal activity using fluorescence in situ
hybridization for Arc (catFISH) to visualize odor-taste convergence onto single
neurons in the BLA and in the IC to assess the number of cells that were
co-activated by both stimuli after odor-taste association. We used a sucrose
conditioned odor preference as a flavor experience in rats, in which 9
odor-sucrose pairings induce a reliable odor-taste association. The results show
that flavor experience induced a four-fold increase in the percentage of cells
activated by both taste and odor stimulations in the BLA, but not in the IC.
Because conditioned odor preference did not modify the number of cells responding
selectively to one stimulus, this greater odor-taste convergence into individual
BLA neurons suggests the recruitment of a neuronal population that can be
activated by both odor and taste only after the association. We conclude that the
development of convergent activation in amygdala neurons after odor-taste
associative learning may provide a cellular basis of flavor memory.
PMID: 20404918 [Indexed for MEDLINE]