Parallel Pathways for Cross-Modal Memory Retrieval in Drosophila
Journal of Neuroscience
Memory-retrieval processing of cross-modal sensory preconditioning is vital for understanding the plasticity underlying the interactions between modalities. As part of the sensory preconditioning paradigm, it has been hypothesized that the conditioned response to an unreinforced cue depends on the memory of the reinforced cue via a sensory link between the two cues. To test this hypothesis, we studied cross-modal memory-retrieval processing in a genetically tractable model organism, Drosophila
... ganism, Drosophila melanogaster. By expressing the dominant temperature-sensitive shibire ts1 (shi ts1 ) transgene, which blocks synaptic vesicle recycling of specific neural subsets with the Gal4/ UAS system at the restrictive temperature, we specifically blocked visual and olfactory memory retrieval, either alone or in combination; memory acquisition remained intact for these modalities. Blocking the memory retrieval of the reinforced olfactory cues did not impair the conditioned response to the unreinforced visual cues or vice versa, in contrast to the canonical memory-retrieval processing of sensory preconditioning. In addition, these conditioned responses can be abolished by blocking the memory retrieval of the two modalities simultaneously. In sum, our results indicated that a conditioned response to an unreinforced cue in cross-modal sensory preconditioning can be recalled through parallel pathways.