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A link between the hippocampal and the striatal memory systems of the brain

Author(s): Rossato Janine I. | Zinn Carolina G. | Furini Cristiane | Bevilaqua Lia R.M. | Medina Jorge H. | Cammarota Martín | Izquierdo Iván

Journal: Anais da Academia Brasileira de Ciências
ISSN 0001-3765

Volume: 78;
Issue: 3;
Start page: 515;
Date: 2006;
Original page

Keywords: hippocampus | striatum | declarative memory | procedural memory | habits | learning

Two major memory systems have been recognized over the years (Squire 1987): the declarative memory system, which is under the control of the hippocampus and related temporal lobe structures, and the procedural or habit memory system, which is under the control of the striatum and its connections. Most if not all learning tasks studied in animals, however, involve either the performance or the suppression of movement; this, if learned well, may be viewed as having become a habit. It is agreed that memory rules change from their first association to those that take place when the task is mastered. Does this change of rules involve a switch from one memory system to another? Here we will comment on: 1) reversal learning in the Morris water maze (MWM), in which the declarative or spatial component of a task is changed but the procedural component (to swim to safety) persists and needs to be re-linked with a different set of spatial cues; and 2) a series of observations on an inhibitory avoidance task that indicate that the brain systems involved change with further learning.
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