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Lifelong reductions of PKMζ in ventral hippocampus of nonhuman primates exposed to early-life adversity due to unpredictable maternal care

Sasha L. Fulton, , Tobias Atkin, Ryan Norris, , , , , Jeremy D. Coplan
Published: 16 August 2021

Abstract: Protein kinase Mζ (PKMζ) maintains long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term memory through persistent increases in kinase expression. Early-life adversity is a precursor to adult mood and anxiety disorders, in part, through persistent disruption of emotional memory throughout life. Here we subjected 10- to 16-wk-old male bonnet macaques to adversity by a maternal variable-foraging demand paradigm. We then examined PKMζ expression in their ventral hippocampi as 7- to 12-yr-old adults. Quantitative immunohistochemistry reveals decreased PKMζ in dentate gyrus, CA1, and subiculum of subjects who had experienced early-life adversity due to the unpredictability of maternal care. Adult animals with persistent decrements of PKMζ in ventral hippocampus express timid rather than confrontational responses to a human intruder. Persistent down-regulation of PKMζ in the ventral hippocampus might reduce the capacity for emotional memory maintenance and contribute to the long-lasting emotional effects of early-life adversity.
Keywords: adults / memory / old / kinase / Protein / PKMζ in ventral / ventral hippocampus

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