CREB at the crossroads of activity-dependent regulation of nervous system development and function

Yesser H. Belgacem, Laura N Borodinsky

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

19 Scopus citations


The central nervous system is a highly plastic network of cells that constantly adjusts its functions to environmental stimuli throughout life. Transcription-dependent mechanisms modify neuronal properties to respond to external stimuli regulating numerous developmental functions, such as cell survival and differentiation, and physiological functions such as learning, memory, and circadian rhythmicity. The discovery and cloning of the cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) responsive element binding protein (CREB) constituted a big step toward deciphering the molecular mechanisms underlying neuronal plasticity. CREB was first discovered in learning and memory studies as a crucial mediator of activity-dependent changes in target gene expression that in turn impose long-lasting modifications of the structure and function of neurons. In this chapter, we review the molecular and signaling mechanisms of neural activity-dependent recruitment of CREB and its cofactors. We discuss the crosstalk between signaling pathways that imprints diverse spatiotemporal patterns of CREB activation allowing for the integration of a wide variety of stimuli.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAdvances in Experimental Medicine and Biology
PublisherSpringer New York LLC
Number of pages21
StatePublished - 2017

Publication series

NameAdvances in Experimental Medicine and Biology
ISSN (Print)0065-2598
ISSN (Electronic)2214-8019


  • Activity-dependent transcription factors
  • CREB cofactors
  • Crosstalk
  • Plasticity
  • Spatiotemporal integration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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