Learning induces the translin/trax RNase complex to express activin receptors for persistent memory

Alan Jung Park, Robbert Havekes, Xiuping Fu, Rolf Hansen, Jennifer C. Tudor, Lucia Peixoto, Zhi Li, Yen Ching Wu, Shane G. Poplawski, Jay M. Baraban, Ted Abel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Long-lasting forms of synaptic plasticity and memory require de novo protein synthesis. Yet, how learning triggers this process to form memory is unclear. Translin/trax is a candidate to drive this learning-induced memory mechanism by suppressing microRNA-mediated translational silencing at activated synapses. We find that mice lacking translin/trax display defects in synaptic tagging, which requires protein synthesis at activated synapses, and long-term memory. Hippocampal samples harvested from these mice following learning show increases in several disease-related microRNAs targeting the activin A receptor type 1C (ACVR1C), a component of the transforming growth factor-β receptor superfamily. Furthermore, the absence of translin/trax abolishes synaptic upregulation of ACVR1C protein after learning. Finally, synaptic tagging and long-term memory deficits in mice lacking translin/trax are mimicked by ACVR1C inhibition. Thus, we define a new memory mechanism by which learning reverses microRNA-mediated silencing of the novel plasticity protein ACVR1C via translin/trax.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere27872
StatePublished - Sep 20 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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