Voltage-dependent calcium and potassium ion conductances: a contingency mechanism for an associative learning model

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Science  24 Aug 1979:
Vol. 205, Issue 4408, pp. 810-816
DOI: 10.1126/science.223244


Persistent light-induced depolarization results from Ca2+ influx across a photoreceptor membrane. The marked dependence on potential of this Ca2+ influx and a Ca+-dependent K+ efflux accounts for enhancement of the light-induced depolarization when light is paired with rotation. A positive feedback cycle between light-induced depolarization and synaptic depolarization due to stimulus pairing can explain long-lasting behavioral changes produced by associative training but not control paradigms. The sensitivity of this Ca2+ influx to intracellular levels of adenosine 3'-5'-monophosphate suggests biochemical steps for this model of associative learning.