Long-term sensitization of the gill and siphon withdrawal in Aplysia is accompanied by facilitation of sensorimotor synaptic connections that depends on new protein synthesis. This phenomenon has been previously shown to involve presynaptic growth. At the postsynaptic level, a reorganization should occur to parallel the formation of new synaptic contacts. We show here that 24 hr following an application of 5-HT, which produces long-term synaptic facilitation (LTF), the response of the motoneuron to an excitatory amino acid agonist of the synaptic receptors is increased. General inhibition of protein synthesis with anisomycin blocks this enhancement. Inhibiton of protein synthesis limited to the postsynaptic neuron by intracellular injection of gelonin, a ribosome-inactivating toxin, also blocks the increase in the response to the agonist but fails to block 24 hr LTF. These results are compatible with a model of LTF that involves coordinate pre- and postsynaptic changes. The latter may include an upregulation of functional postsynaptic receptors. These may not be initially required for LTF measured at a 24 hr time point, but could become necessary for later stages of LTF. An increase in the number of functional postsynaptic receptors in a reserve pool may also prime the postsynaptic neuron for subsequent learning-associated plasticity.