Synaptic plasticity, specifically long-term potentiation and long-term depression, is thought to be the underlying cellular mechanism for learning and memory processes in the brain. About two decades ago a new concept was introduced, namely metaplasticity, which comprises changes that modify the properties of synaptic plasticity due to a priming or preconditioning event.
Journal of Genetics and Genomics = Yi Chuan Xue Bao
The most remarkable feature of the nervous system is that the development and functions of the brain are largely reshaped by postnatal experiences, in joint with genetic landscapes. The nature vs. nurture argument reminds us that both genetic and epigenetic information is indispensable for the normal function of the brain. The epigenetic regulatory mechanisms in the central nervous system have been revealed over last a decade. Moreover, the mutations of epigenetic modulator genes have been shown to be implicated in neuropsychiatric disorders, such as autism spectrum disorders.