Long-term potentiation (LTP), like memory, becomes progressively more resistant to disruption with time after its formation. Here we show that threshold conditions for inducing LTP cause a rapid, long-lasting increase in polymerized filamentous actin in dendritic spines of adult hippocampus. Two independent manipulations that reverse LTP disrupted this effect when applied shortly after induction but not 30 min later. Function-blocking antibodies to beta1 family integrins selectively eliminated both actin polymerization and stabilization of LTP. We propose that the initial stages of consolidation involve integrin-driven events common to cells engaged in activities that require rapid morphological changes.