Axon TRAP reveals learning-associated alterations in cortical axonal mRNAs in the lateral amgydala

Linnaea E. Ostroff, Emanuela Santini, Robert Sears, Zachary Deane, Rahul N. Kanadia, Joseph E. Ledoux, Tenzin Lhakhang, Aristotelis Tsirigos, Adriana Heguy, Eric Klann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Local translation can support memory consolidation by supplying new proteins to synapses undergoing plasticity. Translation in adult forebrain dendrites is an established mechanism of synaptic plasticity and is regulated by learning, yet there is no evidence for learning-regulated protein synthesis in adult forebrain axons, which have traditionally been believed to be incapable of translation. Here, we show that axons in the adult rat amygdala contain translation machinery, and use translating ribosome affinity purification (TRAP) with RNASeq to identify mRNAs in cortical axons projecting to the amygdala, over 1200 of which were regulated during consolidation of associative memory. Mitochondrial and translation-related genes were upregulated, whereas synaptic, cytoskeletal, and myelin-related genes were downregulated; the opposite effects were observed in the cortex. Our results demonstrate that axonal translation occurs in the adult forebrain and is altered after learning, supporting the likelihood that local translation is more a rule than an exception in neuronal processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere51607
StatePublished - Dec 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Immunology and Microbiology


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