Modulation of protein tyrosine phosphorylation in rat insular cortex after conditioned taste aversion training

Kobi Rosenblum, Rina Schul, Noam Meiri, Yaron R. Hadari, Yehiel Zick, Yadin Dudai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Protein tyrosine phosphorylation is a major signal transduction pathway involved in cellular metabolism, growth, and differentiation. Recent data indicate that tyrosine phosphorylation also plays a role in neuronal plasticity. We are using conditioned taste aversion, a fast and robust associative learning paradigm subserved among other brain areas by the insular cortex, to investigate molecular correlates of learning and memory in the rat cortex. In conditioned taste aversion, rats learn to associate a novel taste (e.g., saccharin) with delayed poisoning (e.g., by LiCl injection). Here we report that after conditioned taste aversion training, there is a rapid and marked increase in tyrosine phosphorylation of a set of proteins in the insular cortex but not in other brain areas. A major protein so modulated, of 180 kDa, is abundant in a membrane fraction and remains modulated for more than an hour after training. Exposure of the rats to the novel taste alone results in only a small modulation of the aforementioned proteins whereas administration of the malaise-inducing agent per se has no effect. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first demonstration of modulation of protein tyrosine phosphorylation in the brain after a behavioral experience.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1157-1161
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number4
StatePublished - 14 Feb 1995
Externally publishedYes


  • cortical plasticity
  • taste cortex
  • taste learning
  • tyrosine kinase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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