Short- and long-term memory: differential involvement of neurotransmitter systems and signal transduction cascades
Anais da Academia Brasileira de Ciências
Since William James (1890) first distinguished primary from secondary memory, equivalent to short-and longterm memory, respectively, it has been assumed that short-term memory processes are in charge of cognition while long-term memory is being consolidated. From those days a major question has been whether shortterm memory is merely a initial phase of long-term memory, or a separate phenomena. Recent experiments have shown that many treatments with specific molecular actions given into the
... given into the hippocampus and related brain areas after one-trial avoidance learning can effectively cancel short-term memory without affecting long-term memory formation. This shows that short-term memory and long-term memory involve separate mechanisms and are independently processed. Other treatments, however, influence both memory types similarly, suggesting links between both at the receptor and at the post-receptor level, which should not be surprising as they both deal with nearly the same sensorimotor representations. This review examines recent advances in short-and long-term memory mechanisms based on the effect of intra-hippocampal infusion of drugs acting upon neurotransmitter and signal transduction systems on both memory types.