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Sample records for alters neuronal excitability

  1. BAD and KATP channels regulate neuron excitability and epileptiform activity.

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    Martínez-François, Juan Ramón; Fernández-Agüera, María Carmen; Nathwani, Nidhi; Lahmann, Carolina; Burnham, Veronica L; Danial, Nika N; Yellen, Gary

    2018-01-25

    Brain metabolism can profoundly influence neuronal excitability. Mice with genetic deletion or alteration of Bad ( B CL-2 a gonist of cell d eath) exhibit altered brain-cell fuel metabolism, accompanied by resistance to acutely induced epileptic seizures; this seizure protection is mediated by ATP-sensitive potassium (K ATP ) channels. Here we investigated the effect of BAD manipulation on K ATP channel activity and excitability in acute brain slices. We found that BAD's influence on neuronal K ATP channels was cell-autonomous and directly affected dentate granule neuron (DGN) excitability. To investigate the role of neuronal K ATP channels in the anticonvulsant effects of BAD, we imaged calcium during picrotoxin-induced epileptiform activity in entorhinal-hippocampal slices. BAD knockout reduced epileptiform activity, and this effect was lost upon knockout or pharmacological inhibition of K ATP channels. Targeted BAD knockout in DGNs alone was sufficient for the antiseizure effect in slices, consistent with a 'dentate gate' function that is reinforced by increased K ATP channel activity. © 2018, Martínez-François et al.

  2. Changes in Appetitive Associative Strength Modulates Nucleus Accumbens, But Not Orbitofrontal Cortex Neuronal Ensemble Excitability.

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    Ziminski, Joseph J; Hessler, Sabine; Margetts-Smith, Gabriella; Sieburg, Meike C; Crombag, Hans S; Koya, Eisuke

    2017-03-22

    Cues that predict the availability of food rewards influence motivational states and elicit food-seeking behaviors. If a cue no longer predicts food availability, then animals may adapt accordingly by inhibiting food-seeking responses. Sparsely activated sets of neurons, coined "neuronal ensembles," have been shown to encode the strength of reward-cue associations. Although alterations in intrinsic excitability have been shown to underlie many learning and memory processes, little is known about these properties specifically on cue-activated neuronal ensembles. We examined the activation patterns of cue-activated orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) and nucleus accumbens (NAc) shell ensembles using wild-type and Fos-GFP mice, which express green fluorescent protein (GFP) in activated neurons, after appetitive conditioning with sucrose and extinction learning. We also investigated the neuronal excitability of recently activated, GFP+ neurons in these brain areas using whole-cell electrophysiology in brain slices. Exposure to a sucrose cue elicited activation of neurons in both the NAc shell and OFC. In the NAc shell, but not the OFC, these activated GFP+ neurons were more excitable than surrounding GFP- neurons. After extinction, the number of neurons activated in both areas was reduced and activated ensembles in neither area exhibited altered excitability. These data suggest that learning-induced alterations in the intrinsic excitability of neuronal ensembles is regulated dynamically across different brain areas. Furthermore, we show that changes in associative strength modulate the excitability profile of activated ensembles in the NAc shell. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Sparsely distributed sets of neurons called "neuronal ensembles" encode learned associations about food and cues predictive of its availability. Widespread changes in neuronal excitability have been observed in limbic brain areas after associative learning, but little is known about the excitability changes that

  3. Asynchronous Cholinergic Drive Correlates with Excitation-Inhibition Imbalance via a Neuronal Ca2+ Sensor Protein

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    Keming Zhou

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Excitation-inhibition imbalance in neural networks is widely linked to neurological and neuropsychiatric disorders. However, how genetic factors alter neuronal activity, leading to excitation-inhibition imbalance, remains unclear. Here, using the C. elegans locomotor circuit, we examine how altering neuronal activity for varying time periods affects synaptic release pattern and animal behavior. We show that while short-duration activation of excitatory cholinergic neurons elicits a reversible enhancement of presynaptic strength, persistent activation results to asynchronous and reduced cholinergic drive, inducing imbalance between endogenous excitation and inhibition. We find that the neuronal calcium sensor protein NCS-2 is required for asynchronous cholinergic release in an activity-dependent manner and dampens excitability of inhibitory neurons non-cell autonomously. The function of NCS-2 requires its Ca2+ binding and membrane association domains. These results reveal a synaptic mechanism implicating asynchronous release in regulation of excitation-inhibition balance.

  4. Bidirectional Modulation of Intrinsic Excitability in Rat Prelimbic Cortex Neuronal Ensembles and Non-Ensembles after Operant Learning.

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    Whitaker, Leslie R; Warren, Brandon L; Venniro, Marco; Harte, Tyler C; McPherson, Kylie B; Beidel, Jennifer; Bossert, Jennifer M; Shaham, Yavin; Bonci, Antonello; Hope, Bruce T

    2017-09-06

    Learned associations between environmental stimuli and rewards drive goal-directed learning and motivated behavior. These memories are thought to be encoded by alterations within specific patterns of sparsely distributed neurons called neuronal ensembles that are activated selectively by reward-predictive stimuli. Here, we use the Fos promoter to identify strongly activated neuronal ensembles in rat prelimbic cortex (PLC) and assess altered intrinsic excitability after 10 d of operant food self-administration training (1 h/d). First, we used the Daun02 inactivation procedure in male FosLacZ-transgenic rats to ablate selectively Fos-expressing PLC neurons that were active during operant food self-administration. Selective ablation of these neurons decreased food seeking. We then used male FosGFP-transgenic rats to assess selective alterations of intrinsic excitability in Fos-expressing neuronal ensembles (FosGFP + ) that were activated during food self-administration and compared these with alterations in less activated non-ensemble neurons (FosGFP - ). Using whole-cell recordings of layer V pyramidal neurons in an ex vivo brain slice preparation, we found that operant self-administration increased excitability of FosGFP + neurons and decreased excitability of FosGFP - neurons. Increased excitability of FosGFP + neurons was driven by increased steady-state input resistance. Decreased excitability of FosGFP - neurons was driven by increased contribution of small-conductance calcium-activated potassium (SK) channels. Injections of the specific SK channel antagonist apamin into PLC increased Fos expression but had no effect on food seeking. Overall, operant learning increased intrinsic excitability of PLC Fos-expressing neuronal ensembles that play a role in food seeking but decreased intrinsic excitability of Fos - non-ensembles. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Prefrontal cortex activity plays a critical role in operant learning, but the underlying cellular mechanisms are

  5. Excitability of Aβ sensory neurons is altered in an animal model of peripheral neuropathy

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    Zhu Yong

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Causes of neuropathic pain following nerve injury remain unclear, limiting the development of mechanism-based therapeutic approaches. Animal models have provided some directions, but little is known about the specific sensory neurons that undergo changes in such a way as to induce and maintain activation of sensory pain pathways. Our previous studies implicated changes in the Aβ, normally non-nociceptive neurons in activating spinal nociceptive neurons in a cuff-induced animal model of neuropathic pain and the present study was directed specifically at determining any change in excitability of these neurons. Thus, the present study aimed at recording intracellularly from Aβ-fiber dorsal root ganglion (DRG neurons and determining excitability of the peripheral receptive field, of the cell body and of the dorsal roots. Methods A peripheral neuropathy was induced in Sprague Dawley rats by inserting two thin polyethylene cuffs around the right sciatic nerve. All animals were confirmed to exhibit tactile hypersensitivity to von Frey filaments three weeks later, before the acute electrophysiological experiments. Under stable intracellular recording conditions neurons were classified functionally on the basis of their response to natural activation of their peripheral receptive field. In addition, conduction velocity of the dorsal roots, configuration of the action potential and rate of adaptation to stimulation were also criteria for classification. Excitability was measured as the threshold to activation of the peripheral receptive field, the response to intracellular injection of depolarizing current into the soma and the response to electrical stimulation of the dorsal roots. Results In control animals mechanical thresholds of all neurons were within normal ranges. Aβ DRG neurons in neuropathic rats demonstrated a mean mechanical threshold to receptive field stimulation that were significantly lower than in control rats, a

  6. Learning Enhances Intrinsic Excitability in a Subset of Lateral Amygdala Neurons

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    Sehgal, Megha; Ehlers, Vanessa L.; Moyer, James R., Jr.

    2014-01-01

    Learning-induced modulation of neuronal intrinsic excitability is a metaplasticity mechanism that can impact the acquisition of new memories. Although the amygdala is important for emotional learning and other behaviors, including fear and anxiety, whether learning alters intrinsic excitability within the amygdala has received very little…

  7. Dopamine Neurons Change the Type of Excitability in Response to Stimuli

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    Gutkin, Boris S.; Lapish, Christopher C.; Kuznetsov, Alexey

    2016-01-01

    The dynamics of neuronal excitability determine the neuron’s response to stimuli, its synchronization and resonance properties and, ultimately, the computations it performs in the brain. We investigated the dynamical mechanisms underlying the excitability type of dopamine (DA) neurons, using a conductance-based biophysical model, and its regulation by intrinsic and synaptic currents. Calibrating the model to reproduce low frequency tonic firing results in N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) excitation balanced by γ-Aminobutyric acid (GABA)-mediated inhibition and leads to type I excitable behavior characterized by a continuous decrease in firing frequency in response to hyperpolarizing currents. Furthermore, we analyzed how excitability type of the DA neuron model is influenced by changes in the intrinsic current composition. A subthreshold sodium current is necessary for a continuous frequency decrease during application of a negative current, and the low-frequency “balanced” state during simultaneous activation of NMDA and GABA receptors. Blocking this current switches the neuron to type II characterized by the abrupt onset of repetitive firing. Enhancing the anomalous rectifier Ih current also switches the excitability to type II. Key characteristics of synaptic conductances that may be observed in vivo also change the type of excitability: a depolarized γ-Aminobutyric acid receptor (GABAR) reversal potential or co-activation of α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptors (AMPARs) leads to an abrupt frequency drop to zero, which is typical for type II excitability. Coactivation of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) together with AMPARs and GABARs shifts the type I/II boundary toward more hyperpolarized GABAR reversal potentials. To better understand how altering each of the aforementioned currents leads to changes in excitability profile of DA neuron, we provide a thorough dynamical analysis. Collectively, these results imply that type I

  8. Oleate induces KATP channel-dependent hyperpolarization in mouse hypothalamic glucose-excited neurons without altering cellular energy charge.

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    Dadak, Selma; Beall, Craig; Vlachaki Walker, Julia M; Soutar, Marc P M; McCrimmon, Rory J; Ashford, Michael L J

    2017-03-27

    The unsaturated fatty acid, oleate exhibits anorexigenic properties reducing food intake and hepatic glucose output. However, its mechanism of action in the hypothalamus has not been fully determined. This study investigated the effects of oleate and glucose on GT1-7 mouse hypothalamic cells (a model of glucose-excited (GE) neurons) and mouse arcuate nucleus (ARC) neurons. Whole-cell and perforated patch-clamp recordings, immunoblotting and cell energy status measures were used to investigate oleate- and glucose-sensing properties of mouse hypothalamic neurons. Oleate or lowered glucose concentration caused hyperpolarization and inhibition of firing of GT1-7 cells by the activation of ATP-sensitive K + channels (K ATP ). This effect of oleate was not dependent on fatty acid oxidation or raised AMP-activated protein kinase activity or prevented by the presence of the UCP2 inhibitor genipin. Oleate did not alter intracellular calcium, indicating that CD36/fatty acid translocase may not play a role. However, oleate activation of K ATP may require ATP metabolism. The short-chain fatty acid octanoate was unable to replicate the actions of oleate on GT1-7 cells. Although oleate decreased GT1-7 cell mitochondrial membrane potential there was no change in total cellular ATP or ATP/ADP ratios. Perforated patch and whole-cell recordings from mouse hypothalamic slices demonstrated that oleate hyperpolarized a subpopulation of ARC GE neurons by K ATP activation. Additionally, in a separate small population of ARC neurons, oleate application or lowered glucose concentration caused membrane depolarization. In conclusion, oleate induces K ATP- dependent hyperpolarization and inhibition of firing of a subgroup of GE hypothalamic neurons without altering cellular energy charge. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  9. Block of voltage-gated potassium channels by Pacific ciguatoxin-1 contributes to increased neuronal excitability in rat sensory neurons

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Birinyi-Strachan, Liesl C.; Gunning, Simon J.; Lewis, Richard J.; Nicholson, Graham M.

    2005-01-01

    The present study investigated the actions of the polyether marine toxin Pacific ciguatoxin-1 (P-CTX-1) on neuronal excitability in rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons using patch-clamp recording techniques. Under current-clamp conditions, bath application of 2-20 nM P-CTX-1 caused a rapid, concentration-dependent depolarization of the resting membrane potential in neurons expressing tetrodotoxin (TTX)-sensitive voltage-gated sodium (Na v ) channels. This action was completely suppressed by the addition of 200 nM TTX to the external solution, indicating that this effect was mediated through TTX-sensitive Na v channels. In addition, P-CTX-1 also prolonged action potential and afterhyperpolarization (AHP) duration. In a subpopulation of neurons, P-CTX-1 also produced tonic action potential firing, an effect that was not accompanied by significant oscillation of the resting membrane potential. Conversely, in neurons expressing TTX-resistant Na v currents, P-CTX-1 failed to alter any parameter of neuronal excitability examined in this study. Under voltage-clamp conditions in rat DRG neurons, P-CTX-1 inhibited both delayed-rectifier and 'A-type' potassium currents in a dose-dependent manner, actions that occurred in the absence of alterations to the voltage dependence of activation. These actions appear to underlie the prolongation of the action potential and AHP, and contribute to repetitive firing. These data indicate that a block of potassium channels contributes to the increase in neuronal excitability, associated with a modulation of Na v channel gating, observed clinically in response to ciguatera poisoning

  10. Altering neuronal excitability to preserve network connectivity in a computational model of Alzheimer's disease.

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    Willem de Haan

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Neuronal hyperactivity and hyperexcitability of the cerebral cortex and hippocampal region is an increasingly observed phenomenon in preclinical Alzheimer's disease (AD. In later stages, oscillatory slowing and loss of functional connectivity are ubiquitous. Recent evidence suggests that neuronal dynamics have a prominent role in AD pathophysiology, making it a potentially interesting therapeutic target. However, although neuronal activity can be manipulated by various (non-pharmacological means, intervening in a highly integrated system that depends on complex dynamics can produce counterintuitive and adverse effects. Computational dynamic network modeling may serve as a virtual test ground for developing effective interventions. To explore this approach, a previously introduced large-scale neural mass network with human brain topology was used to simulate the temporal evolution of AD-like, activity-dependent network degeneration. In addition, six defense strategies that either enhanced or diminished neuronal excitability were tested against the degeneration process, targeting excitatory and inhibitory neurons combined or separately. Outcome measures described oscillatory, connectivity and topological features of the damaged networks. Over time, the various interventions produced diverse large-scale network effects. Contrary to our hypothesis, the most successful strategy was a selective stimulation of all excitatory neurons in the network; it substantially prolonged the preservation of network integrity. The results of this study imply that functional network damage due to pathological neuronal activity can be opposed by targeted adjustment of neuronal excitability levels. The present approach may help to explore therapeutic effects aimed at preserving or restoring neuronal network integrity and contribute to better-informed intervention choices in future clinical trials in AD.

  11. Protease-Mediated Suppression of DRG Neuron Excitability by Commensal Bacteria.

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    Sessenwein, Jessica L; Baker, Corey C; Pradhananga, Sabindra; Maitland, Megan E; Petrof, Elaine O; Allen-Vercoe, Emma; Noordhof, Curtis; Reed, David E; Vanner, Stephen J; Lomax, Alan E

    2017-11-29

    Peripheral pain signaling reflects a balance of pronociceptive and antinociceptive influences; the contribution by the gastrointestinal microbiota to this balance has received little attention. Disorders, such as inflammatory bowel disease and irritable bowel syndrome, are associated with exaggerated visceral nociceptive actions that may involve altered microbial signaling, particularly given the evidence for bacterial dysbiosis. Thus, we tested whether a community of commensal gastrointestinal bacteria derived from a healthy human donor (microbial ecosystem therapeutics; MET-1) can affect the excitability of male mouse DRG neurons. MET-1 reduced the excitability of DRG neurons by significantly increasing rheobase, decreasing responses to capsaicin (2 μm) and reducing action potential discharge from colonic afferent nerves. The increase in rheobase was accompanied by an increase in the amplitude of voltage-gated K + currents. A mixture of bacterial protease inhibitors abrogated the effect of MET-1 effects on DRG neuron rheobase. A serine protease inhibitor but not inhibitors of cysteine proteases, acid proteases, metalloproteases, or aminopeptidases abolished the effects of MET-1. The serine protease cathepsin G recapitulated the effects of MET-1 on DRG neurons. Inhibition of protease-activated receptor-4 (PAR-4), but not PAR-2, blocked the effects of MET-1. Furthermore, Faecalibacterium prausnitzii recapitulated the effects of MET-1 on excitability of DRG neurons. We conclude that serine proteases derived from commensal bacteria can directly impact the excitability of DRG neurons, through PAR-4 activation. The ability of microbiota-neuronal interactions to modulate afferent signaling suggests that therapies that induce or correct microbial dysbiosis may impact visceral pain. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Commercially available probiotics have the potential to modify visceral pain. Here we show that secretory products from gastrointestinal microbiota derived from a human

  12. Altered Chloride Homeostasis Decreases the Action Potential Threshold and Increases Hyperexcitability in Hippocampal Neurons

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    Sørensen, Andreas T; Ledri, Marco; Melis, Miriam

    2017-01-01

    Chloride ions play an important role in controlling excitability of principal neurons in the central nervous system. When neurotransmitter GABA is released from inhibitory interneurons, activated GABA type A (GABAA) receptors on principal neurons become permeable to chloride. Typically, chloride...... neurons, and promote AP generation. It is generally recognized that altered chloride homeostasis per se has no effect on the AP threshold. Here, we demonstrate that chloride overload of mouse principal CA3 pyramidal neurons not only makes these cells more excitable through GABAA receptor activation...

  13. Altered neuronal excitability underlies impaired hippocampal function in an animal model of psychosis

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    Thomas eGrüter

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Psychosis is accompanied by severe attentional deficits, and impairments in associational-memory processing and sensory information processing that are ascribed to dysfunctions in prefrontal and hippocampal function. Disruptions of glutamatergic signalling may underlie these alterations: Antagonism of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR results in similar molecular, cellular, cognitive and behavioural changes in rodents and/or humans as those that occur in psychosis, raising the question as to whether changes in glutamatergic transmission may be intrinsic to the pathophysiology of the disease. In an animal model of psychosis that comprises treatment with the irreversible NMDAR-antagonist, MK801, we explored the cellular mechanisms that may underlie hippocampal dysfunction in psychosis. MK801-treatment resulted in a profound loss of hippocampal LTP that was evident 4 weeks after treatment. Whereas neuronal expression of the immediate early gene, Arc, was enhanced in the hippocampus by spatial learning in controls, MK801-treated animals failed to show activity-dependent increases in Arc expression. By contrast, a significant increase in basal Arc expression in the absence of learning was evident compared to controls. Paired-pulse facilitation was increased at the 40 ms interval indicating that NMDAR and/or fast GABAergic-mediated neurotransmission was disrupted. In line with this, MK801-treatment resulted in a significant decrease in GABA(A, and increase in GABA(B-receptor-expression in PFC, along with a significant increase of GABA(B- and NMDAR-GluN2B expression in the dentate gyrus. NMDAR-GluN1 or GluN2A subunit expression was unchanged. These data suggest that in psychosis, deficits in hippocampus-dependent memory may be caused by a loss of hippocampal LTP that arises through enhanced hippocampal neuronal excitability, altered GluN2B and GABA receptor expression and an uncoupling of the hippocampus-prefrontal cortex circuitry.

  14. Selective serotonergic excitation of callosal projection neurons

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    Daniel eAvesar

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Serotonin (5-HT acting as a neurotransmitter in the cerebral cortex is critical for cognitive function, yet how 5-HT regulates information processing in cortical circuits is not well understood. We tested the serotonergic responsiveness of layer 5 pyramidal neurons (L5PNs of the mouse medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC, and found 3 distinct response types: long-lasting 5-HT1A (1A receptor-dependent inhibitory responses (84% of L5PNs, 5-HT2A (2A receptor-dependent excitatory responses (9%, and biphasic responses in which 2A-dependent excitation followed brief inhibition (5%. Relative to 5-HT-inhibited neurons, those excited by 5-HT had physiological properties characteristic of callosal/commissural (COM neurons that project to the contralateral cortex. We tested whether serotonergic responses in cortical pyramidal neurons are correlated with their axonal projection pattern using retrograde fluorescent labeling of COM and corticopontine-projecting (CPn neurons. 5-HT generated excitatory or biphasic responses in all 5-HT-responsive layer 5 COM neurons. Conversely, CPn neurons were universally inhibited by 5-HT. Serotonergic excitation of COM neurons was blocked by the 2A antagonist MDL 11939, while serotonergic inhibition of CPn neurons was blocked by the 1A antagonist WAY 100635, confirming a role for these two receptor subtypes in regulating pyramidal neuron activity. Selective serotonergic excitation of COM neurons was not layer-specific, as COM neurons in layer 2/3 were also selectively excited by 5-HT relative to their non-labeled pyramidal neuron neighbors. Because neocortical 2A receptors are implicated in the etiology and pathophysiology of schizophrenia, we propose that COM neurons may represent a novel cellular target for intervention in psychiatric disease.

  15. Differential regulation of the excitability of prefrontal cortical fast-spiking interneurons and pyramidal neurons by serotonin and fluoxetine.

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    Ping Zhong

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Serotonin exerts a powerful influence on neuronal excitability. In this study, we investigated the effects of serotonin on different neuronal populations in prefrontal cortex (PFC, a major area controlling emotion and cognition. Using whole-cell recordings in PFC slices, we found that bath application of 5-HT dose-dependently increased the firing of FS (fast spiking interneurons, and decreased the firing of pyramidal neurons. The enhancing effect of 5-HT in FS interneurons was mediated by 5-HT₂ receptors, while the reducing effect of 5-HT in pyramidal neurons was mediated by 5-HT₁ receptors. Fluoxetine, the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, also induced a concentration-dependent increase in the excitability of FS interneurons, but had little effect on pyramidal neurons. In rats with chronic fluoxetine treatment, the excitability of FS interneurons was significantly increased, while pyramidal neurons remained unchanged. Fluoxetine injection largely occluded the enhancing effect of 5-HT in FS interneurons, but did not alter the reducing effect of 5-HT in pyramidal neurons. These data suggest that the excitability of PFC interneurons and pyramidal neurons is regulated by exogenous 5-HT in an opposing manner, and FS interneurons are the major target of Fluoxetine. It provides a framework for understanding the action of 5-HT and antidepressants in altering PFC network activity.

  16. Food for thought: Impact of metabolism on neuronal excitability.

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    Katsu-Jiménez, Yurika; Alves, Renato M P; Giménez-Cassina, Alfredo

    2017-11-01

    Neuronal excitability is a highly demanding process that requires high amounts of energy and needs to be exquisitely regulated. For this reason, brain cells display active energy metabolism to support their activity. Independently of their roles as energy substrates, compelling evidence shows that the nature of the fuels that neurons use contribute to fine-tune neuronal excitability. Crosstalk of neurons with glial populations also plays a prominent role in shaping metabolic flow in the brain. In this review, we provide an overview on how different carbon substrates and metabolic pathways impact neurotransmission, and the potential implications for neurological disorders in which neuronal excitability is deregulated, such as epilepsy. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. The chemokine CXCL1/growth related oncogene increases sodium currents and neuronal excitability in small diameter sensory neurons

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    Wick Dayna M

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Altered Na+ channel expression, enhanced excitability, and spontaneous activity occur in nerve-injury and inflammatory models of pathological pain, through poorly understood mechanisms. The cytokine GRO/KC (growth related oncogene; CXCL1 shows strong, rapid upregulation in dorsal root ganglion in both nerve injury and inflammatory models. Neurons and glia express its receptor (CXCR2. CXCL1 has well-known effects on immune cells, but little is known about its direct effects on neurons. Results We report that GRO/KC incubation (1.5 nM, overnight caused marked upregulation of Na+ currents in acutely isolated small diameter rat (adult sensory neurons in vitro. In both IB4-positive and IB4-negative sensory neurons, TTX-resistant and TTX-sensitive currents increased 2- to 4 fold, without altered voltage dependence or kinetic changes. These effects required long exposures, and were completely blocked by co-incubation with protein synthesis inhibitor cycloheximide. Amplification of cDNA from the neuronal cultures showed that 3 Na channel isoforms were predominant both before and after GRO/KC treatment (Nav 1.1, 1.7, and 1.8. TTX-sensitive isoforms 1.1 and 1.7 significantly increased 2 – 3 fold after GRO/KC incubation, while 1.8 showed a trend towards increased expression. Current clamp experiments showed that GRO/KC caused a marked increase in excitability, including resting potential depolarization, decreased rheobase, and lower action potential threshold. Neurons acquired a striking ability to fire repetitively; IB4-positive cells also showed marked broadening of action potentials. Immunohistochemical labelling confirmed that the CXCR2 receptor was present in most neurons both in dissociated cells and in DRG sections, as previously shown for neurons in the CNS. Conclusion Many studies on the role of chemokines in pain conditions have focused on their rapid and indirect effects on neurons, via release of inflammatory mediators

  18. Changes in the Excitability of Neocortical Neurons in a Mouse Model of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Are Not Specific to Corticospinal Neurons and Are Modulated by Advancing Disease.

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    Kim, Juhyun; Hughes, Ethan G; Shetty, Ashwin S; Arlotta, Paola; Goff, Loyal A; Bergles, Dwight E; Brown, Solange P

    2017-09-13

    Cell type-specific changes in neuronal excitability have been proposed to contribute to the selective degeneration of corticospinal neurons in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and to neocortical hyperexcitability, a prominent feature of both inherited and sporadic variants of the disease, but the mechanisms underlying selective loss of specific cell types in ALS are not known. We analyzed the physiological properties of distinct classes of cortical neurons in the motor cortex of hSOD1 G93A mice of both sexes and found that they all exhibit increases in intrinsic excitability that depend on disease stage. Targeted recordings and in vivo calcium imaging further revealed that neurons adapt their functional properties to normalize cortical excitability as the disease progresses. Although different neuron classes all exhibited increases in intrinsic excitability, transcriptional profiling indicated that the molecular mechanisms underlying these changes are cell type specific. The increases in excitability in both excitatory and inhibitory cortical neurons show that selective dysfunction of neuronal cell types cannot account for the specific vulnerability of corticospinal motor neurons in ALS. Furthermore, the stage-dependent alterations in neuronal function highlight the ability of cortical circuits to adapt as disease progresses. These findings show that both disease stage and cell type must be considered when developing therapeutic strategies for treating ALS. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT It is not known why certain classes of neurons preferentially die in different neurodegenerative diseases. It has been proposed that the enhanced excitability of affected neurons is a major contributor to their selective loss. We show using a mouse model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a disease in which corticospinal neurons exhibit selective vulnerability, that changes in excitability are not restricted to this neuronal class and that excitability does not increase

  19. Morphine disinhibits glutamatergic input to VTA dopamine neurons and promotes dopamine neuron excitation.

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    Chen, Ming; Zhao, Yanfang; Yang, Hualan; Luan, Wenjie; Song, Jiaojiao; Cui, Dongyang; Dong, Yi; Lai, Bin; Ma, Lan; Zheng, Ping

    2015-07-24

    One reported mechanism for morphine activation of dopamine (DA) neurons of the ventral tegmental area (VTA) is the disinhibition model of VTA-DA neurons. Morphine inhibits GABA inhibitory neurons, which shifts the balance between inhibitory and excitatory input to VTA-DA neurons in favor of excitation and then leads to VTA-DA neuron excitation. However, it is not known whether morphine has an additional strengthening effect on excitatory input. Our results suggest that glutamatergic input to VTA-DA neurons is inhibited by GABAergic interneurons via GABAB receptors and that morphine promotes presynaptic glutamate release by removing this inhibition. We also studied the contribution of the morphine-induced disinhibitory effect on the presynaptic glutamate release to the overall excitatory effect of morphine on VTA-DA neurons and related behavior. Our results suggest that the disinhibitory action of morphine on presynaptic glutamate release might be the main mechanism for morphine-induced increase in VTA-DA neuron firing and related behaviors.

  20. Heart failure-induced changes of voltage-gated Ca2+ channels and cell excitability in rat cardiac postganglionic neurons.

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    Tu, Huiyin; Liu, Jinxu; Zhang, Dongze; Zheng, Hong; Patel, Kaushik P; Cornish, Kurtis G; Wang, Wei-Zhong; Muelleman, Robert L; Li, Yu-Long

    2014-01-15

    Chronic heart failure (CHF) is characterized by decreased cardiac parasympathetic and increased cardiac sympathetic nerve activity. This autonomic imbalance increases the risk of arrhythmias and sudden death in patients with CHF. We hypothesized that the molecular and cellular alterations of cardiac postganglionic parasympathetic (CPP) neurons located in the intracardiac ganglia and sympathetic (CPS) neurons located in the stellate ganglia (SG) possibly link to the cardiac autonomic imbalance in CHF. Rat CHF was induced by left coronary artery ligation. Single-cell real-time PCR and immunofluorescent data showed that L (Ca(v)1.2 and Ca(v)1.3), P/Q (Ca(v)2.1), N (Ca(v)2.2), and R (Ca(v)2.3) types of Ca2+ channels were expressed in CPP and CPS neurons, but CHF decreased the mRNA and protein expression of only the N-type Ca2+ channels in CPP neurons, and it did not affect mRNA and protein expression of all Ca2+ channel subtypes in the CPS neurons. Patch-clamp recording confirmed that CHF reduced N-type Ca2+ currents and cell excitability in the CPP neurons and enhanced N-type Ca2+ currents and cell excitability in the CPS neurons. N-type Ca2+ channel blocker (1 μM ω-conotoxin GVIA) lowered Ca2+ currents and cell excitability in the CPP and CPS neurons from sham-operated and CHF rats. These results suggest that CHF reduces the N-type Ca2+ channel currents and cell excitability in the CPP neurons and enhances the N-type Ca2+ currents and cell excitability in the CPS neurons, which may contribute to the cardiac autonomic imbalance in CHF.

  1. Markers of pathological excitability derived from principal dynamic modes of hippocampal neurons

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    Kang, Eunji E.; Zalay, Osbert C.; Serletis, Demitre; Carlen, Peter L.; Bardakjian, Berj L.

    2012-10-01

    Transformation of principal dynamic modes (PDMs) under epileptogenic conditions was investigated by computing the Volterra kernels in a rodent epilepsy model derived from a mouse whole hippocampal preparation, where epileptogenesis was induced by altering the concentrations of Mg2 + and K+ of the perfusate for different levels of excitability. Both integrating and differentiating PDMs were present in the neuronal dynamics, and both of them increased in absolute magnitude for increased excitability levels. However, the integrating PDMs dominated at all levels of excitability in terms of their relative contributions to the overall response, whereas the dominant frequency responses of the differentiating PDMs were shifted to higher ranges under epileptogenic conditions, from ripple activities (75-200 Hz) to fast ripple activities (200-500 Hz).

  2. Prefrontal Neuronal Excitability Maintains Cocaine-Associated Memory During Retrieval

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    James M. Otis

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Presentation of drug-associated cues provokes craving and drug seeking, and elimination of these associative memories would facilitate recovery from addiction. Emotionally salient memories are maintained during retrieval, as particular pharmacologic or optogenetic perturbations of memory circuits during retrieval, but not after, can induce long-lasting memory impairments. For example, in rats, inhibition of noradrenergic beta-receptors, which control intrinsic neuronal excitability, in the prelimbic medial prefrontal cortex (PL-mPFC can cause long-term memory impairments that prevent subsequent cocaine-induced reinstatement. The physiologic mechanisms that allow noradrenergic signaling to maintain drug-associated memories during retrieval, however, are unclear. Here we combine patch-clamp electrophysiology ex vivo and behavioral neuropharmacology in vivo to evaluate the mechanisms that maintain drug-associated memory during retrieval in rats. Consistent with previous studies, we find that cocaine experience increases the intrinsic excitability of pyramidal neurons in PL-mPFC. In addition, we now find that this intrinsic plasticity positively predicts the retrieval of a cocaine-induced conditioned place preference (CPP memory, suggesting that such plasticity may contribute to drug-associated memory retrieval. In further support of this, we find that pharmacological blockade of a cAMP-dependent signaling cascade, which allows noradrenergic signaling to elevate neuronal excitability, is required for memory maintenance during retrieval. Thus, inhibition of PL-mPFC neuronal excitability during memory retrieval not only leads to long-term deficits in the memory, but this memory deficit provides protection against subsequent cocaine-induced reinstatement. These data reveal that PL-mPFC intrinsic neuronal excitability maintains a cocaine-associated memory during retrieval and suggest a unique mechanism whereby drug-associated memories could be targeted

  3. Exposure to a high fat diet during the perinatal period alters vagal motoneurone excitability, even in the absence of obesity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhagat, Ruchi; Fortna, Samuel R; Browning, Kirsteen N

    2015-01-01

    Obesity is recognized as being multifactorial in origin, involving both genetic and environmental factors. The perinatal period is known to be critically important in the development of neural circuits responsible for energy homeostasis and the integration of autonomic reflexes. Diet-induced obesity alters the biophysical, pharmacological and morphological properties of vagal neurocircuits regulating upper gastrointestinal tract functions, including satiety. Less information is available, however, regarding the effects of a high fat diet (HFD) itself on the properties of vagal neurocircuits. The present study was designed to test the hypothesis that exposure to a HFD during the perinatal period alters the electrophysiological, pharmacological and morphological properties of vagal efferent motoneurones innervating the stomach. Our data indicate that perinatal HFD decreases the excitability of gastric-projecting dorsal motor nucleus neurones and dysregulates neurotransmitter release from synaptic inputs and that these alterations occur prior to the development of obesity. These findings represent the first direct evidence that exposure to a HFD modulates the processing of central vagal neurocircuits even in the absence of obesity. The perinatal period is critically important to the development of autonomic neural circuits responsible for energy homeostasis. Vagal neurocircuits are vital to the regulation of upper gastrointestinal functions, including satiety. Diet-induced obesity modulates the excitability and responsiveness of both peripheral vagal afferents and central vagal efferents but less information is available regarding the effects of diet per se on vagal neurocircuit functions. The aims of this study were to investigate whether perinatal exposure to a high fat diet (HFD) dysregulated dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus (DMV) neurones, prior to the development of obesity. Whole cell patch clamp recordings were made from gastric-projecting DMV neurones in thin

  4. Brain Distribution and Modulation of Neuronal Excitability by Indicaxanthin From Opuntia Ficus Indica Administered at Nutritionally-Relevant Amounts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giuditta Gambino

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Several studies have recently investigated the role of nutraceuticals in complex pathophysiological processes such as oxidative damages, inflammatory conditions and excitotoxicity. In this regard, the effects of nutraceuticals on basic functions of neuronal cells, such as excitability, are still poorly investigated. For this reason, the possible modulation of neuronal excitability by phytochemicals (PhC could represent an interesting field of research given that excitotoxicity phenomena are involved in neurodegenerative alterations leading, for example, to Alzheimer’s disease. The present study was focused on indicaxanthin from Opuntia ficus indica, a bioactive betalain pigment, with a proven antioxidant and anti-inflammatory potential, previously found to cross blood-brain barrier (BBB and to modulate the bioelectric activity of hippocampal neurons. On this basis, we aimed at detecting the specific brain areas where indicaxanthin localizes after oral administration at dietary-achievable amounts and highlighting eventual local effects on the excitability of single neuronal units. HPLC analysis of brain tissue 1 h after ingestion of 2 μmol/kg indicaxanthin indicated that the phytochemical accumulates in cortex, hippocampus, diencephalon, brainstem and cerebellum, but not in the striato-pallidal complex. Then, electrophysiological recordings, applying the microiontophoretic technique, were carried out with different amounts of indicaxanthin (0.34, 0.17, 0.085 ng/neuron to assess whether indicaxanthin influenced the neuronal firing rate. The data showed that the bioelectric activity of neurons belonging to different brain areas was modulated after local injection of indicaxanthin, mainly with dose-related responses. A predominating inhibitory effect was observed, suggesting a possible novel beneficial effect of indicaxanthin in reducing cell excitability. These findings can constitute a new rationale for exploring biological mechanisms through

  5. Brain Distribution and Modulation of Neuronal Excitability by Indicaxanthin From Opuntia Ficus Indica Administered at Nutritionally-Relevant Amounts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gambino, Giuditta; Allegra, Mario; Sardo, Pierangelo; Attanzio, Alessandro; Tesoriere, Luisa; Livrea, Maria A.; Ferraro, Giuseppe; Carletti, Fabio

    2018-01-01

    Several studies have recently investigated the role of nutraceuticals in complex pathophysiological processes such as oxidative damages, inflammatory conditions and excitotoxicity. In this regard, the effects of nutraceuticals on basic functions of neuronal cells, such as excitability, are still poorly investigated. For this reason, the possible modulation of neuronal excitability by phytochemicals (PhC) could represent an interesting field of research given that excitotoxicity phenomena are involved in neurodegenerative alterations leading, for example, to Alzheimer’s disease. The present study was focused on indicaxanthin from Opuntia ficus indica, a bioactive betalain pigment, with a proven antioxidant and anti-inflammatory potential, previously found to cross blood-brain barrier (BBB) and to modulate the bioelectric activity of hippocampal neurons. On this basis, we aimed at detecting the specific brain areas where indicaxanthin localizes after oral administration at dietary-achievable amounts and highlighting eventual local effects on the excitability of single neuronal units. HPLC analysis of brain tissue 1 h after ingestion of 2 μmol/kg indicaxanthin indicated that the phytochemical accumulates in cortex, hippocampus, diencephalon, brainstem and cerebellum, but not in the striato-pallidal complex. Then, electrophysiological recordings, applying the microiontophoretic technique, were carried out with different amounts of indicaxanthin (0.34, 0.17, 0.085 ng/neuron) to assess whether indicaxanthin influenced the neuronal firing rate. The data showed that the bioelectric activity of neurons belonging to different brain areas was modulated after local injection of indicaxanthin, mainly with dose-related responses. A predominating inhibitory effect was observed, suggesting a possible novel beneficial effect of indicaxanthin in reducing cell excitability. These findings can constitute a new rationale for exploring biological mechanisms through which PhC could

  6. The ADAR RNA editing enzyme controls neuronal excitability in Drosophila melanogaster

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xianghua; Overton, Ian M.; Baines, Richard A.; Keegan, Liam P.; O’Connell, Mary A.

    2014-01-01

    RNA editing by deamination of specific adenosine bases to inosines during pre-mRNA processing generates edited isoforms of proteins. Recoding RNA editing is more widespread in Drosophila than in vertebrates. Editing levels rise strongly at metamorphosis, and Adar5G1 null mutant flies lack editing events in hundreds of CNS transcripts; mutant flies have reduced viability, severely defective locomotion and age-dependent neurodegeneration. On the other hand, overexpressing an adult dADAR isoform with high enzymatic activity ubiquitously during larval and pupal stages is lethal. Advantage was taken of this to screen for genetic modifiers; Adar overexpression lethality is rescued by reduced dosage of the Rdl (Resistant to dieldrin), gene encoding a subunit of inhibitory GABA receptors. Reduced dosage of the Gad1 gene encoding the GABA synthetase also rescues Adar overexpression lethality. Drosophila Adar5G1 mutant phenotypes are ameliorated by feeding GABA modulators. We demonstrate that neuronal excitability is linked to dADAR expression levels in individual neurons; Adar-overexpressing larval motor neurons show reduced excitability whereas Adar5G1 null mutant or targeted Adar knockdown motor neurons exhibit increased excitability. GABA inhibitory signalling is impaired in human epileptic and autistic conditions, and vertebrate ADARs may have a relevant evolutionarily conserved control over neuronal excitability. PMID:24137011

  7. Trace Fear Conditioning Differentially Modulates Intrinsic Excitability of Medial Prefrontal Cortex-Basolateral Complex of Amygdala Projection Neurons in Infralimbic and Prelimbic Cortices.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Chenghui; Ehlers, Vanessa L; Moyer, James R

    2015-09-30

    specific neurons change during behavior. This is the first study to demonstrate that trace fear conditioning significantly alters the intrinsic excitability of mPFC-to-amygdala projection neurons in a subregion- and cell-type-specific manner, which is also transient and reversed by extinction. These data are of broad interest to the neuroscientific community, and the results will inspire additional studies investigating the cellular mechanisms underlying circuit-specific changes within the brain as a result of associative learning and memory. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/3513511-14$15.00/0.

  8. Mice lacking the transcriptional regulator Bhlhe40 have enhanced neuronal excitability and impaired synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus.

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    Kelly A Hamilton

    Full Text Available Bhlhe40 is a transcription factor that is highly expressed in the hippocampus; however, its role in neuronal function is not well understood. Here, we used Bhlhe40 null mice on a congenic C57Bl6/J background (Bhlhe40 KO to investigate the impact of Bhlhe40 on neuronal excitability and synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus. Bhlhe40 KO CA1 neurons had increased miniature excitatory post-synaptic current amplitude and decreased inhibitory post-synaptic current amplitude, indicating CA1 neuronal hyperexcitability. Increased CA1 neuronal excitability was not associated with increased seizure severity as Bhlhe40 KO relative to +/+ (WT control mice injected with the convulsant kainic acid. However, significant reductions in long term potentiation and long term depression at CA1 synapses were observed in Bhlhe40 KO mice, indicating impaired hippocampal synaptic plasticity. Behavioral testing for spatial learning and memory on the Morris Water Maze (MWM revealed that while Bhlhe40 KO mice performed similarly to WT controls initially, when the hidden platform was moved to the opposite quadrant Bhlhe40 KO mice showed impairments in relearning, consistent with decreased hippocampal synaptic plasticity. To investigate possible mechanisms for increased neuronal excitability and decreased synaptic plasticity, a whole genome mRNA expression profile of Bhlhe40 KO hippocampus was performed followed by a chromatin immunoprecipitation sequencing (ChIP-Seq screen of the validated candidate genes for Bhlhe40 protein-DNA interactions consistent with transcriptional regulation. Of the validated genes identified from mRNA expression analysis, insulin degrading enzyme (Ide had the most significantly altered expression in hippocampus and was significantly downregulated on the RNA and protein levels; although Bhlhe40 did not occupy the Ide gene by ChIP-Seq. Together, these findings support a role for Bhlhe40 in regulating neuronal excitability and synaptic plasticity in

  9. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor/neurotrophin 3 regulate axon initial segment location and affect neuronal excitability in cultured hippocampal neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Yu; Su, Zi-Jun; Chen, Yi-Kun; Chai, Zhen

    2017-07-01

    Plasticity of the axon initial segment (AIS) has aroused great interest in recent years because it regulates action potential initiation and neuronal excitability. AIS plasticity manifests as modulation of ion channels or variation in AIS structure. However, the mechanisms underlying structural plasticity of the AIS are not well understood. Here, we combined immunofluorescence, patch-clamp recordings, and pharmacological methods in cultured hippocampal neurons to investigate the factors participating in AIS structural plasticity during development. With lowered neuronal density, the distance between the AIS and the soma increased, while neuronal excitability decreased, as shown by the increased action potential threshold and current threshold for firing an action potential. This variation in the location of the AIS was associated with cellular secretory substances, including brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and neurotrophin 3 (NT3). Indeed, blocking BDNF and NT3 with TrkB-Fc eliminated the effect of conditioned medium collected from high-density cultures on AIS relocation. Elevating the extracellular concentration of BDNF or NT3 promoted movement of the AIS proximally to the soma and increased neuronal excitability. Furthermore, knockdown of neurotrophin receptors TrkB and TrkC caused distal movement of the AIS. Our results demonstrate that BDNF and NT3 regulate AIS location and neuronal excitability. These regulatory functions of neurotrophic factors provide insight into the molecular mechanisms underlying AIS biology. © 2017 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  10. Altered Balance of Receptive Field Excitation and Suppression in Visual Cortex of Amblyopic Macaque Monkeys.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hallum, Luke E; Shooner, Christopher; Kumbhani, Romesh D; Kelly, Jenna G; García-Marín, Virginia; Majaj, Najib J; Movshon, J Anthony; Kiorpes, Lynne

    2017-08-23

    In amblyopia, a visual disorder caused by abnormal visual experience during development, the amblyopic eye (AE) loses visual sensitivity whereas the fellow eye (FE) is largely unaffected. Binocular vision in amblyopes is often disrupted by interocular suppression. We used 96-electrode arrays to record neurons and neuronal groups in areas V1 and V2 of six female macaque monkeys ( Macaca nemestrina ) made amblyopic by artificial strabismus or anisometropia in early life, as well as two visually normal female controls. To measure suppressive binocular interactions directly, we recorded neuronal responses to dichoptic stimulation. We stimulated both eyes simultaneously with large sinusoidal gratings, controlling their contrast independently with raised-cosine modulators of different orientations and spatial frequencies. We modeled each eye's receptive field at each cortical site using a difference of Gaussian envelopes and derived estimates of the strength of central excitation and surround suppression. We used these estimates to calculate ocular dominance separately for excitation and suppression. Excitatory drive from the FE dominated amblyopic visual cortex, especially in more severe amblyopes, but suppression from both the FE and AEs was prevalent in all animals. This imbalance created strong interocular suppression in deep amblyopes: increasing contrast in the AE decreased responses at binocular cortical sites. These response patterns reveal mechanisms that likely contribute to the interocular suppression that disrupts vision in amblyopes. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Amblyopia is a developmental visual disorder that alters both monocular vision and binocular interaction. Using microelectrode arrays, we examined binocular interaction in primary visual cortex and V2 of six amblyopic macaque monkeys ( Macaca nemestrina ) and two visually normal controls. By stimulating the eyes dichoptically, we showed that, in amblyopic cortex, the binocular combination of signals is

  11. Regulation of neuronal excitability by interaction of fragile X mental retardation protein with slack potassium channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yalan; Brown, Maile R; Hyland, Callen; Chen, Yi; Kronengold, Jack; Fleming, Matthew R; Kohn, Andrea B; Moroz, Leonid L; Kaczmarek, Leonard K

    2012-10-31

    Loss of the RNA-binding protein fragile X mental retardation protein (FMRP) represents the most common form of inherited intellectual disability. Studies with heterologous expression systems indicate that FMRP interacts directly with Slack Na(+)-activated K(+) channels (K(Na)), producing an enhancement of channel activity. We have now used Aplysia bag cell (BC) neurons, which regulate reproductive behaviors, to examine the effects of Slack and FMRP on excitability. FMRP and Slack immunoreactivity were colocalized at the periphery of isolated BC neurons, and the two proteins could be reciprocally coimmunoprecipitated. Intracellular injection of FMRP lacking its mRNA binding domain rapidly induced a biphasic outward current, with an early transient tetrodotoxin-sensitive component followed by a slowly activating sustained component. The properties of this current matched that of the native Slack potassium current, which was identified using an siRNA approach. Addition of FMRP to inside-out patches containing native Aplysia Slack channels increased channel opening and, in current-clamp recordings, produced narrowing of action potentials. Suppression of Slack expression did not alter the ability of BC neurons to undergo a characteristic prolonged discharge in response to synaptic stimulation, but prevented recovery from a prolonged inhibitory period that normally follows the discharge. Recovery from the inhibited period was also inhibited by the protein synthesis inhibitor anisomycin. Our studies indicate that, in BC neurons, Slack channels are required for prolonged changes in neuronal excitability that require new protein synthesis, and raise the possibility that channel-FMRP interactions may link changes in neuronal firing to changes in protein translation.

  12. Heat pulse excitability of vestibular hair cells and afferent neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brichta, Alan M.; Tabatabaee, Hessam; Boutros, Peter J.; Ahn, JoongHo; Della Santina, Charles C.; Poppi, Lauren A.; Lim, Rebecca

    2016-01-01

    In the present study we combined electrophysiology with optical heat pulse stimuli to examine thermodynamics of membrane electrical excitability in mammalian vestibular hair cells and afferent neurons. We recorded whole cell currents in mammalian type II vestibular hair cells using an excised preparation (mouse) and action potentials (APs) in afferent neurons in vivo (chinchilla) in response to optical heat pulses applied to the crista (ΔT ≈ 0.25°C per pulse). Afferent spike trains evoked by heat pulse stimuli were diverse and included asynchronous inhibition, asynchronous excitation, and/or phase-locked APs synchronized to each infrared heat pulse. Thermal responses of membrane currents responsible for APs in ganglion neurons were strictly excitatory, with Q10 ≈ 2. In contrast, hair cells responded with a mix of excitatory and inhibitory currents. Excitatory hair cell membrane currents included a thermoelectric capacitive current proportional to the rate of temperature rise (dT/dt) and an inward conduction current driven by ΔT. An iberiotoxin-sensitive inhibitory conduction current was also evoked by ΔT, rising in heat pulse excitability in vestibular sensory organs and provide quantitative methods for rational application of optical heat pulses to examine protein biophysics and manipulate cellular excitability. PMID:27226448

  13. Exon silencing by UAGG motifs in response to neuronal excitation.

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    Ping An

    2007-02-01

    Full Text Available Alternative pre-mRNA splicing plays fundamental roles in neurons by generating functional diversity in proteins associated with the communication and connectivity of the synapse. The CI cassette of the NMDA R1 receptor is one of a variety of exons that show an increase in exon skipping in response to cell excitation, but the molecular nature of this splicing responsiveness is not yet understood. Here we investigate the molecular basis for the induced changes in splicing of the CI cassette exon in primary rat cortical cultures in response to KCl-induced depolarization using an expression assay with a tight neuron-specific readout. In this system, exon silencing in response to neuronal excitation was mediated by multiple UAGG-type silencing motifs, and transfer of the motifs to a constitutive exon conferred a similar responsiveness by gain of function. Biochemical analysis of protein binding to UAGG motifs in extracts prepared from treated and mock-treated cortical cultures showed an increase in nuclear hnRNP A1-RNA binding activity in parallel with excitation. Evidence for the role of the NMDA receptor and calcium signaling in the induced splicing response was shown by the use of specific antagonists, as well as cell-permeable inhibitors of signaling pathways. Finally, a wider role for exon-skipping responsiveness is shown to involve additional exons with UAGG-related silencing motifs, and transcripts involved in synaptic functions. These results suggest that, at the post-transcriptional level, excitable exons such as the CI cassette may be involved in strategies by which neurons mount adaptive responses to hyperstimulation.

  14. Astrocytes Control Neuronal Excitability in the Nucleus Accumbens

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    Tommaso Fellin

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Though accumulating evidence shows that the metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGluR5 mediates some of the actions of extracellular glutamate after cocaine use, the cellular events underlying this action are poorly understood. In this review, we will discuss recent results showing that mGluR5 receptors are key regulators of astrocyte activity. Synaptic release of glutamate activates mGluR5 expressed in perisynaptic astrocytes and generates intense Ca2+ signaling in these cells. Ca2+ oscillations, in turn, trigger the release from astrocytes of the gliotransmitter glutamate, which modulates neuronal excitability by activating NMDA receptors. By integrating these results with the most recent evidence demonstrating the importance of astrocytes in the regulation of neuronal excitability, we propose that astrocytes are involved in mediating some of the mGluR5-dependent drug-induced behaviors.

  15. Distal axotomy enhances retrograde presynaptic excitability onto injured pyramidal neurons via trans-synaptic signaling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagendran, Tharkika; Larsen, Rylan S; Bigler, Rebecca L; Frost, Shawn B; Philpot, Benjamin D; Nudo, Randolph J; Taylor, Anne Marion

    2017-09-20

    Injury of CNS nerve tracts remodels circuitry through dendritic spine loss and hyper-excitability, thus influencing recovery. Due to the complexity of the CNS, a mechanistic understanding of injury-induced synaptic remodeling remains unclear. Using microfluidic chambers to separate and injure distal axons, we show that axotomy causes retrograde dendritic spine loss at directly injured pyramidal neurons followed by retrograde presynaptic hyper-excitability. These remodeling events require activity at the site of injury, axon-to-soma signaling, and transcription. Similarly, directly injured corticospinal neurons in vivo also exhibit a specific increase in spiking following axon injury. Axotomy-induced hyper-excitability of cultured neurons coincides with elimination of inhibitory inputs onto injured neurons, including those formed onto dendritic spines. Netrin-1 downregulation occurs following axon injury and exogenous netrin-1 applied after injury normalizes spine density, presynaptic excitability, and inhibitory inputs at injured neurons. Our findings show that intrinsic signaling within damaged neurons regulates synaptic remodeling and involves netrin-1 signaling.Spinal cord injury can induce synaptic reorganization and remodeling in the brain. Here the authors study how severed distal axons signal back to the cell body to induce hyperexcitability, loss of inhibition and enhanced presynaptic release through netrin-1.

  16. Characterization of Different Types of Excitability in Large Somatosensory Neurons and Its Plastic Changes in Pathological Pain States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xie, Rou-Gang; Chu, Wen-Guang; Hu, San-Jue; Luo, Ceng

    2018-01-01

    Sensory neuron types have been distinguished by distinct morphological and transcriptional characteristics. Excitability is the most fundamental functional feature of neurons. Mathematical models described by Hodgkin have revealed three types of neuronal excitability based on the relationship between firing frequency and applied current intensity. However, whether natural sensory neurons display different functional characteristics in terms of excitability and whether this excitability type undergoes plastic changes under pathological pain states have remained elusive. Here, by utilizing whole-cell patch clamp recordings, behavioral and pharmacological assays, we demonstrated that large dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons can be classified into three classes and four subclasses based on their excitability patterns, which is similar to mathematical models raised by Hodgkin. Analysis of hyperpolarization-activated cation current (Ih) revealed different magnitude of Ih in different excitability types of large DRG neurons, with higher Ih in Class 2-1 than that in Class 1, 2-2 and 3. This indicates a crucial role of Ih in the determination of excitability type of large DRG neurons. More importantly, this pattern of excitability displays plastic changes and transition under pathological pain states caused by peripheral nerve injury. This study sheds new light on the functional characteristics of large DRG neurons and extends functional classification of large DRG neurons by integration of transcriptomic and morphological characteristics. PMID:29303989

  17. Characterization of Different Types of Excitability in Large Somatosensory Neurons and Its Plastic Changes in Pathological Pain States

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rou-Gang Xie

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Sensory neuron types have been distinguished by distinct morphological and transcriptional characteristics. Excitability is the most fundamental functional feature of neurons. Mathematical models described by Hodgkin have revealed three types of neuronal excitability based on the relationship between firing frequency and applied current intensity. However, whether natural sensory neurons display different functional characteristics in terms of excitability and whether this excitability type undergoes plastic changes under pathological pain states have remained elusive. Here, by utilizing whole-cell patch clamp recordings, behavioral and pharmacological assays, we demonstrated that large dorsal root ganglion (DRG neurons can be classified into three classes and four subclasses based on their excitability patterns, which is similar to mathematical models raised by Hodgkin. Analysis of hyperpolarization-activated cation current (Ih revealed different magnitude of Ih in different excitability types of large DRG neurons, with higher Ih in Class 2-1 than that in Class 1, 2-2 and 3. This indicates a crucial role of Ih in the determination of excitability type of large DRG neurons. More importantly, this pattern of excitability displays plastic changes and transition under pathological pain states caused by peripheral nerve injury. This study sheds new light on the functional characteristics of large DRG neurons and extends functional classification of large DRG neurons by integration of transcriptomic and morphological characteristics.

  18. Heat pulse excitability of vestibular hair cells and afferent neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rabbitt, Richard D; Brichta, Alan M; Tabatabaee, Hessam; Boutros, Peter J; Ahn, JoongHo; Della Santina, Charles C; Poppi, Lauren A; Lim, Rebecca

    2016-08-01

    In the present study we combined electrophysiology with optical heat pulse stimuli to examine thermodynamics of membrane electrical excitability in mammalian vestibular hair cells and afferent neurons. We recorded whole cell currents in mammalian type II vestibular hair cells using an excised preparation (mouse) and action potentials (APs) in afferent neurons in vivo (chinchilla) in response to optical heat pulses applied to the crista (ΔT ≈ 0.25°C per pulse). Afferent spike trains evoked by heat pulse stimuli were diverse and included asynchronous inhibition, asynchronous excitation, and/or phase-locked APs synchronized to each infrared heat pulse. Thermal responses of membrane currents responsible for APs in ganglion neurons were strictly excitatory, with Q10 ≈ 2. In contrast, hair cells responded with a mix of excitatory and inhibitory currents. Excitatory hair cell membrane currents included a thermoelectric capacitive current proportional to the rate of temperature rise (dT/dt) and an inward conduction current driven by ΔT An iberiotoxin-sensitive inhibitory conduction current was also evoked by ΔT, rising in protein biophysics and manipulate cellular excitability. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  19. CAMKII activation is not required for maintenance of learning-induced enhancement of neuronal excitability.

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    Ori Liraz

    Full Text Available Pyramidal neurons in the piriform cortex from olfactory-discrimination trained rats show enhanced intrinsic neuronal excitability that lasts for several days after learning. Such enhanced intrinsic excitability is mediated by long-term reduction in the post-burst after-hyperpolarization (AHP which is generated by repetitive spike firing. AHP reduction is due to decreased conductance of a calcium-dependent potassium current, the sI(AHP. We have previously shown that learning-induced AHP reduction is maintained by persistent protein kinase C (PKC and extracellular regulated kinase (ERK activation. However, the molecular machinery underlying this long-lasting modulation of intrinsic excitability is yet to be fully described. Here we examine whether the CaMKII, which is known to be crucial in learning, memory and synaptic plasticity processes, is instrumental for the maintenance of learning-induced AHP reduction. KN93, that selectively blocks CaMKII autophosphorylation at Thr286, reduced the AHP in neurons from trained and control rat to the same extent. Consequently, the differences in AHP amplitude and neuronal adaptation between neurons from trained rats and controls remained. Accordingly, the level of activated CaMKII was similar in pirifrom cortex samples taken form trained and control rats. Our data show that although CaMKII modulates the amplitude of AHP of pyramidal neurons in the piriform cortex, its activation is not required for maintaining learning-induced enhancement of neuronal excitability.

  20. Effects of cold temperatures on the excitability of rat trigeminal ganglion neurons that are not for cold-sensing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanda, Hirosato; Gu, Jianguo G.

    2016-01-01

    Except a small population of primary afferent neurons for sensing cold to generate the sensations of innocuous and noxious cold, it is generally believed that cold temperatures suppress the excitability of other primary afferent neurons that are not for cold-sensing. These not-for-cold-sensing neurons include the majority of non-nociceptive and nociceptive afferent neurons. In the present study we have found that not-for-cold-sensing neurons of rat trigeminal ganglia (TG) change their excitability in several ways at cooling temperatures. In nearly 70% of not-for-cold-sensing TG neurons, the cooling temperature of 15°C increases their membrane excitability. We regard these neurons as cold-active neurons. For the remaining 30% of not-for-cold-sensing TG neurons, the cooling temperature of 15°C either has no effect (regarded as cold-ineffective neurons) or suppress (regarded as cold-suppressive neurons) their membrane excitability. For cold-active neurons, the cold temperature of 15°C increases their excitability as is evidenced by the increases in action potential (AP) firing numbers and/or reduction of AP rheobase when these neurons are depolarized electrically. The cold temperature of 15°C significantly inhibits M-currents and increases membrane input resistance of cold-active neurons. Retigabine, an M-current activator, abolishes the effect of cold temperatures on AP firing but not the effect of cold temperature on AP rheobase levels. The inhibition of M-currents and the increases of membrane input resistance are likely two mechanisms by which cooling temperatures increase the excitability of not-for-cold-sensing TG neurons. PMID:26709732

  1. Mechanisms Underlying Serotonergic Excitation of Callosal Projection Neurons in the Mouse Medial Prefrontal Cortex

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    Emily K. Stephens

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Serotonin (5-HT selectively excites subpopulations of pyramidal neurons in the neocortex via activation of 5-HT2A (2A receptors coupled to Gq subtype G-protein alpha subunits. Gq-mediated excitatory responses have been attributed primarily to suppression of potassium conductances, including those mediated by KV7 potassium channels (i.e., the M-current, or activation of non-specific cation conductances that underlie calcium-dependent afterdepolarizations (ADPs. However, 2A-dependent excitation of cortical neurons has not been extensively studied, and no consensus exists regarding the underlying ionic effector(s involved. In layer 5 of the mouse medial prefrontal cortex, we tested potential mechanisms of serotonergic excitation in commissural/callosal (COM projection neurons, a subpopulation of pyramidal neurons that exhibits 2A-dependent excitation in response to 5-HT. In baseline conditions, 5-HT enhanced the rate of action potential generation in COM neurons experiencing suprathreshold somatic current injection. This serotonergic excitation was occluded by activation of muscarinic acetylcholine (ACh receptors, confirming that 5-HT acts via the same Gq-signaling cascades engaged by ACh. Like ACh, 5-HT promoted the generation of calcium-dependent ADPs following spike trains. However, calcium was not necessary for serotonergic excitation, as responses to 5-HT were enhanced (by >100%, rather than reduced, by chelation of intracellular calcium with 10 mM BAPTA. This suggests intracellular calcium negatively regulates additional ionic conductances gated by 2A receptors. Removal of extracellular calcium had no effect when intracellular calcium signaling was intact, but suppressed 5-HT response amplitudes, by about 50%, when BAPTA was included in patch pipettes. This suggests that 2A excitation involves activation of a non-specific cation conductance that is both calcium-sensitive and calcium-permeable. M-current suppression was found to be a third

  2. Pulsed infrared radiation excites cultured neonatal spiral and vestibular ganglion neurons by modulating mitochondrial calcium cycling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lumbreras, Vicente; Bas, Esperanza; Gupta, Chhavi; Rajguru, Suhrud M

    2014-09-15

    Cochlear implants are currently the most effective solution for profound sensorineural hearing loss, and vestibular prostheses are under development to treat bilateral vestibulopathies. Electrical current spread in these neuroprostheses limits channel independence and, in some cases, may impair their performance. In comparison, optical stimuli that are spatially confined may result in a significant functional improvement. Pulsed infrared radiation (IR) has previously been shown to elicit responses in neurons. This study analyzes the response of neonatal rat spiral and vestibular ganglion neurons in vitro to IR (wavelength = 1,863 nm) using Ca(2+) imaging. Both types of neurons responded consistently with robust intracellular Ca(2+) ([Ca(2+)]i) transients that matched the low-frequency IR pulses applied (4 ms, 0.25-1 pps). Radiant exposures of ∼637 mJ/cm(2) resulted in continual neuronal activation. Temperature or [Ca(2+)] variations in the media did not alter the IR-evoked transients, ruling out extracellular Ca(2+) involvement or primary mediation by thermal effects on the plasma membrane. While blockage of Na(+), K(+), and Ca(2+) plasma membrane channels did not alter the IR-evoked response, blocking of mitochondrial Ca(2+) cycling with CGP-37157 or ruthenium red reversibly inhibited the IR-evoked [Ca(2+)]i transients. Additionally, the magnitude of the IR-evoked transients was dependent on ryanodine and cyclopiazonic acid-dependent Ca(2+) release. These results suggest that IR modulation of intracellular calcium cycling contributes to stimulation of spiral and vestibular ganglion neurons. As a whole, the results suggest selective excitation of neurons in the IR beam path and the potential of IR stimulation in future auditory and vestibular prostheses. Copyright © 2014 the American Physiological Society.

  3. Bicarbonate Contributes to GABAA Receptor-Mediated Neuronal Excitation in Surgically-Resected Human Hypothalamic Hamartomas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Do-Young, Kim; Fenoglio, Kristina A.; Kerrigan, John F.; Rho, Jong M.

    2009-01-01

    SUMMARY The role of bicarbonate (HCO3-) in GABAA receptor-mediated depolarization of human hypothalamic hamartoma (HH) neurons was investigated using cellular electrophysiological and calcium imaging techniques. Activation of GABAA receptors with muscimol (30 μM) provoked neuronal excitation in over 70% of large (18-22 μM) HH neurons in HCO3- buffer. Subsequent perfusion of HCO3--free HEPES buffer produced partial suppression of muscimol-induced excitation. Additionally, 53% of large HH neurons under HCO3--free conditions exhibited reduced intracellular calcium accumulation by muscimol. These results suggest that HCO3- efflux through GABAA receptors on a subpopulation of large HH neurons may contribute to membrane depolarization and subsequent activation of L-type calcium channels. PMID:19022626

  4. Layer-specific excitation/inhibition balances during neuronal synchronization in the visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adesnik, Hillel

    2018-05-01

    Understanding the balance between synaptic excitation and inhibition in cortical circuits in the brain, and how this contributes to cortical rhythms, is fundamental to explaining information processing in the cortex. This study used cortical layer-specific optogenetic activation in mouse cortex to show that excitatory neurons in any cortical layer can drive powerful gamma rhythms, while inhibition balances excitation. The net impact of this is to keep activity within each layer in check, but simultaneously to promote the propagation of activity to downstream layers. The data show that rhythm-generating circuits exist in all principle layers of the cortex, and provide layer-specific balances of excitation and inhibition that affect the flow of information across the layers. Rhythmic activity can synchronize neural ensembles within and across cortical layers. While gamma band rhythmicity has been observed in all layers, the laminar sources and functional impacts of neuronal synchronization in the cortex remain incompletely understood. Here, layer-specific optogenetic stimulation demonstrates that populations of excitatory neurons in any cortical layer of the mouse's primary visual cortex are sufficient to powerfully entrain neuronal oscillations in the gamma band. Within each layer, inhibition balances excitation and keeps activity in check. Across layers, translaminar output overcomes inhibition and drives downstream firing. These data establish that rhythm-generating circuits exist in all principle layers of the cortex, but provide layer-specific balances of excitation and inhibition that may dynamically shape the flow of information through cortical circuits. These data might help explain how excitation/inhibition (E/I) balances across cortical layers shape information processing, and shed light on the diverse nature and functional impacts of cortical gamma rhythms. © 2018 The Authors. The Journal of Physiology © 2018 The Physiological Society.

  5. Balance of excitation and inhibition determines 1/f power spectrum in neuronal networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lombardi, F; Herrmann, H J; de Arcangelis, L

    2017-04-01

    The 1/f-like decay observed in the power spectrum of electro-physiological signals, along with scale-free statistics of the so-called neuronal avalanches, constitutes evidence of criticality in neuronal systems. Recent in vitro studies have shown that avalanche dynamics at criticality corresponds to some specific balance of excitation and inhibition, thus suggesting that this is a basic feature of the critical state of neuronal networks. In particular, a lack of inhibition significantly alters the temporal structure of the spontaneous avalanche activity and leads to an anomalous abundance of large avalanches. Here, we study the relationship between network inhibition and the scaling exponent β of the power spectral density (PSD) of avalanche activity in a neuronal network model inspired in Self-Organized Criticality. We find that this scaling exponent depends on the percentage of inhibitory synapses and tends to the value β = 1 for a percentage of about 30%. More specifically, β is close to 2, namely, Brownian noise, for purely excitatory networks and decreases towards values in the interval [1, 1.4] as the percentage of inhibitory synapses ranges between 20% and 30%, in agreement with experimental findings. These results indicate that the level of inhibition affects the frequency spectrum of resting brain activity and suggest the analysis of the PSD scaling behavior as a possible tool to study pathological conditions.

  6. High-frequency stimulation-induced peptide release synchronizes arcuate kisspeptin neurons and excites GnRH neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qiu, Jian; Nestor, Casey C; Zhang, Chunguang; Padilla, Stephanie L; Palmiter, Richard D

    2016-01-01

    Kisspeptin (Kiss1) and neurokinin B (NKB) neurocircuits are essential for pubertal development and fertility. Kisspeptin neurons in the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus (Kiss1ARH) co-express Kiss1, NKB, dynorphin and glutamate and are postulated to provide an episodic, excitatory drive to gonadotropin-releasing hormone 1 (GnRH) neurons, the synaptic mechanisms of which are unknown. We characterized the cellular basis for synchronized Kiss1ARH neuronal activity using optogenetics, whole-cell electrophysiology, molecular pharmacology and single cell RT-PCR in mice. High-frequency photostimulation of Kiss1ARH neurons evoked local release of excitatory (NKB) and inhibitory (dynorphin) neuropeptides, which were found to synchronize the Kiss1ARH neuronal firing. The light-evoked synchronous activity caused robust excitation of GnRH neurons by a synaptic mechanism that also involved glutamatergic input to preoptic Kiss1 neurons from Kiss1ARH neurons. We propose that Kiss1ARH neurons play a dual role of driving episodic secretion of GnRH through the differential release of peptide and amino acid neurotransmitters to coordinate reproductive function. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.16246.001 PMID:27549338

  7. Purines and Neuronal Excitability: Links to the Ketogenic Diet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masino, SA; Kawamura, M; Ruskin, DN; Geiger, JD; Boison, D

    2011-01-01

    ATP and adenosine are purines that play dual roles in cell metabolism and neuronal signaling. Acting at the A1 receptor (A1R) subtype, adenosine acts directly on neurons to inhibit excitability and is a powerful endogenous neuroprotective and anticonvulsant molecule. Previous research showed an increase in ATP and other cell energy parameters when an animal is administered a ketogenic diet, an established metabolic therapy to reduce epileptic seizures, but the relationship among purines, neuronal excitability and the ketogenic diet was unclear. Recent work in vivo and in vitro tested the specific hypothesis that adenosine acting at A1Rs is a key mechanism underlying the success of ketogenic diet therapy and yielded direct evidence linking A1Rs to the antiepileptic effects of a ketogenic diet. Specifically, an in vitro mimic of a ketogenic diet revealed an A1R-dependent metabolic autocrine hyperpolarization of hippocampal neurons. In parallel, applying the ketogenic diet in vivo to transgenic mouse models with spontaneous electrographic seizures revealed that intact A1Rs are necessary for the seizure-suppressing effects of the diet. This is the first direct in vivo evidence linking A1Rs to the antiepileptic effects of a ketogenic diet. Other predictions of the relationship between purines and the ketogenic diet are discussed. Taken together, recent research on the role of purines may offer new opportunities for metabolic therapy and insight into its underlying mechanisms. PMID:21880467

  8. Orthodontic treatment-induced temporal alteration of jaw-opening reflex excitability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sasaki, Au; Hasegawa, Naoya; Adachi, Kazunori; Sakagami, Hiroshi; Suda, Naoto

    2017-10-01

    The impairment of orofacial motor function during orthodontic treatment needs to be addressed, because most orthodontic patients experience pain and motor excitability would be affected by pain. In the present study, the temporal alteration of the jaw-opening reflex excitability was investigated to determine if orthodontic treatment affects orofacial motor function. The excitability of jaw-opening reflex evoked by electrical stimulation on the gingiva and recorded bilaterally in the anterior digastric muscles was evaluated at 1 (D1), 3 (D3), and 7 days (D7) after orthodontic force application to the teeth of right side; morphological features (e.g., osteoclast genesis and tooth movement) were also evaluated. To clarify the underlying mechanism of orthodontic treatment-induced alteration of orofacial motor excitability, analgesics were administrated for 1 day. At D1 and D3, orthodontic treatment significantly decreased the threshold for inducing the jaw-opening reflex but significantly increased the threshold at D7. Other parameters of the jaw-opening reflex were also evaluated (e.g., latency, duration and area under the curve of anterior digastric muscles activity), and only the latency of the D1 group was significantly different from that of the other groups. Temporal alteration of the jaw-opening reflex excitability was significantly correlated with changes in morphological features. Aspirin (300 mg·kg -1 ·day -1 ) significantly increased the threshold for inducing the jaw-opening reflex, whereas a lower dose (75-150 mg·kg -1 ·day -1 ) of aspirin or acetaminophen (300 mg·kg -1 ·day -1 ) failed to alter the jaw-opening reflex excitability. These results suggest that an increase of the jaw-opening reflex excitability can be induced acutely by orthodontic treatment, possibly through the cyclooxygenase activation. NEW & NOTEWORTHY It is well known that motor function is affected by pain, but the effect of orthodontic treatment-related pain on the trigeminal

  9. Hearing loss alters serotonergic modulation of intrinsic excitability in auditory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rao, Deepti; Basura, Gregory J; Roche, Joseph; Daniels, Scott; Mancilla, Jaime G; Manis, Paul B

    2010-11-01

    Sensorineural hearing loss during early childhood alters auditory cortical evoked potentials in humans and profoundly changes auditory processing in hearing-impaired animals. Multiple mechanisms underlie the early postnatal establishment of cortical circuits, but one important set of developmental mechanisms relies on the neuromodulator serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine [5-HT]). On the other hand, early sensory activity may also regulate the establishment of adultlike 5-HT receptor expression and function. We examined the role of 5-HT in auditory cortex by first investigating how 5-HT neurotransmission and 5-HT(2) receptors influence the intrinsic excitability of layer II/III pyramidal neurons in brain slices of primary auditory cortex (A1). A brief application of 5-HT (50 μM) transiently and reversibly decreased firing rates, input resistance, and spike rate adaptation in normal postnatal day 12 (P12) to P21 rats. Compared with sham-operated animals, cochlear ablation increased excitability at P12-P21, but all the effects of 5-HT, except for the decrease in adaptation, were eliminated in both sham-operated and cochlear-ablated rats. At P30-P35, cochlear ablation did not increase intrinsic excitability compared with shams, but it did prevent a pronounced decrease in excitability that appeared 10 min after 5-HT application. We also tested whether the effects on excitability were mediated by 5-HT(2) receptors. In the presence of the 5-HT(2)-receptor antagonist, ketanserin, 5-HT significantly decreased excitability compared with 5-HT or ketanserin alone in both sham-operated and cochlear-ablated P12-P21 rats. However, at P30-P35, ketanserin had no effect in sham-operated and only a modest effect cochlear-ablated animals. The 5-HT(2)-specific agonist 5-methoxy-N,N-dimethyltryptamine also had no effect at P12-P21. These results suggest that 5-HT likely regulates pyramidal cell excitability via multiple receptor subtypes with opposing effects. These data also show that

  10. Regional Differences in Striatal Neuronal Ensemble Excitability Following Cocaine and Extinction Memory Retrieval in Fos-GFP Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ziminski, Joseph J; Sieburg, Meike C; Margetts-Smith, Gabriella; Crombag, Hans S; Koya, Eisuke

    2018-03-01

    Learned associations between drugs of abuse and the drug administration environment have an important role in addiction. In rodents, exposure to a drug-associated environment elicits conditioned psychomotor activation, which may be weakened following extinction (EXT) learning. Although widespread drug-induced changes in neuronal excitability have been observed, little is known about specific changes within neuronal ensembles activated during the recall of drug-environment associations. Using a cocaine-conditioned locomotion (CL) procedure, the present study assessed the excitability of neuronal ensembles in the nucleus accumbens core and shell (NAc core and NAc shell ), and dorsal striatum (DS) following cocaine conditioning and EXT in Fos-GFP mice that express green fluorescent protein (GFP) in activated neurons (GFP+). During conditioning, mice received repeated cocaine injections (20 mg/kg) paired with a locomotor activity chamber (Paired) or home cage (Unpaired). Seven to 13 days later, both groups were re-exposed to the activity chamber under drug-free conditions and Paired, but not Unpaired, mice exhibited CL. In a separate group of mice, CL was extinguished by repeatedly exposing mice to the activity chamber under drug-free conditions. Following the expression and EXT of CL, GFP+ neurons in the NAc core (but not NAc shell and DS) displayed greater firing capacity compared to surrounding GFP- neurons. This difference in excitability was due to a generalized decrease in GFP- excitability following CL and a selective increase in GFP+ excitability following its EXT. These results suggest a role for both widespread and ensemble-specific changes in neuronal excitability following recall of drug-environment associations.

  11. Hypocretin/Orexin Peptides Alter Spike Encoding by Serotonergic Dorsal Raphe Neurons through Two Distinct Mechanisms That Increase the Late Afterhyperpolarization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishibashi, Masaru; Gumenchuk, Iryna; Miyazaki, Kenichi; Inoue, Takafumi; Ross, William N; Leonard, Christopher S

    2016-09-28

    Orexins (hypocretins) are neuropeptides that regulate multiple homeostatic processes, including reward and arousal, in part by exciting serotonergic dorsal raphe neurons, the major source of forebrain serotonin. Here, using mouse brain slices, we found that, instead of simply depolarizing these neurons, orexin-A altered the spike encoding process by increasing the postspike afterhyperpolarization (AHP) via two distinct mechanisms. This orexin-enhanced AHP (oeAHP) was mediated by both OX1 and OX2 receptors, required Ca(2+) influx, reversed near EK, and decayed with two components, the faster of which resulted from enhanced SK channel activation, whereas the slower component decayed like a slow AHP (sAHP), but was not blocked by UCL2077, an antagonist of sAHPs in some neurons. Intracellular phospholipase C inhibition (U73122) blocked the entire oeAHP, but neither component was sensitive to PKC inhibition or altered PKA signaling, unlike classical sAHPs. The enhanced SK current did not depend on IP3-mediated Ca(2+) release but resulted from A-current inhibition and the resultant spike broadening, which increased Ca(2+) influx and Ca(2+)-induced-Ca(2+) release, whereas the slower component was insensitive to these factors. Functionally, the oeAHP slowed and stabilized orexin-induced firing compared with firing produced by a virtual orexin conductance lacking the oeAHP. The oeAHP also reduced steady-state firing rate and firing fidelity in response to stimulation, without affecting the initial rate or fidelity. Collectively, these findings reveal a new orexin action in serotonergic raphe neurons and suggest that, when orexin is released during arousal and reward, it enhances the spike encoding of phasic over tonic inputs, such as those related to sensory, motor, and reward events. Orexin peptides are known to excite neurons via slow postsynaptic depolarizations. Here we elucidate a significant new orexin action that increases and prolongs the postspike

  12. Effects of cold temperatures on the excitability of rat trigeminal ganglion neurons that are not for cold sensing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanda, Hirosato; Gu, Jianguo G

    2017-05-01

    Aside from a small population of primary afferent neurons for sensing cold, which generate sensations of innocuous and noxious cold, it is generally believed that cold temperatures suppress the excitability of primary afferent neurons not responsible for cold sensing. These not-for-cold-sensing neurons include the majority of non-nociceptive and nociceptive afferent neurons. In this study we have found that the not-for-cold-sensing neurons of rat trigeminal ganglia (TG) change their excitability in several ways at cooling temperatures. In nearly 70% of not-for-cold-sensing TG neurons, a cooling temperature of 15°C increases their membrane excitability. We regard these neurons as cold-active neurons. For the remaining 30% of not-for-cold-sensing TG neurons, the cooling temperature of 15°C either has no effect (cold-ineffective neurons) or suppress their membrane excitability (cold-suppressive neurons). For cold-active neurons, the cold temperature of 15°C increases their excitability as is evidenced by increases in action potential (AP) firing numbers and/or the reduction in AP rheobase when these neurons are depolarized electrically. The cold temperature of 15°C significantly inhibits M-currents and increases membrane input resistance of cold-active neurons. Retigabine, an M-current activator, abolishes the effect of cold temperatures on AP firing, but not the effect of cold temperature on AP rheobase levels. The inhibition of M-currents and the increases of membrane input resistance are likely two mechanisms by which cooling temperatures increase the excitability of not-for-cold-sensing TG neurons. This article is part of the special article series "Pain". © 2015 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  13. Divalent cations as modulators of neuronal excitability: Emphasis on copper and zinc

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    RICARDO DELGADO

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Based on indirect evidence, a role for synaptically released copper and zinc as modulators of neuronal activity has been proposed. To test this proposal directly, we studied the effect of copper, zinc, and other divalent cations on voltage-dependent currents in dissociated toad olfactory neurons and on their firing rate induced by small depolarizing currents. Divalent cations in the nanomolar range sped up the activation kinetics and increased the amplitude of the inward sodium current. In the micromolar range, they caused a dose dependent inhibition of the inward Na+ and Ca2+ currents (I Na and I Ca and reduced de amplitude of the Ca2+-dependent K+ outward current (I Ca-K. On the other hand, the firing rate of olfactory neurons increased when exposed to nanomolar concentration of divalent cations and decreased when exposed to micromolar concentrations. This biphasic effect of divalent cations on neuronal excitability may be explained by the interaction of these ions with high and low affinity sites in voltage-gated channels. Our results support the idea that these ions are normal modulators of neuronal excitability

  14. α-MSH Influences the Excitability of Feeding-Related Neurons in the Hypothalamus and Dorsal Vagal Complex of Rats

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    Hong-Zai Guan

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Alpha-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (α-MSH is processed from proopiomelanocortin (POMC and acts on the melanocortin receptors, MC3 and MC4. α-MSH plays a key role in energy homeostasis. In the present study, to shed light on the mechanisms by which α-MSH exerts its anorectic effects, extracellular neuronal activity was recorded in the hypothalamus and the dorsal vagal complex (DVC of anesthetized rats. We examined the impact of α-MSH on glucose-sensing neurons and gastric distension (GD sensitive neurons. In the lateral hypothalamus (LHA, α-MSH inhibited 75.0% of the glucose-inhibited (GI neurons. In the ventromedial nucleus (VMN, most glucose-sensitive neurons were glucose-excited (GE neurons, which were mainly activated by α-MSH. In the paraventricular nucleus (PVN, α-MSH suppressed the majority of GI neurons and excited most GE neurons. In the DVC, among the 20 GI neurons examined for a response to α-MSH, 1 was activated, 16 were depressed, and 3 failed to respond. Nineteen of 24 GE neurons were activated by α-MSH administration. Additionally, among the 42 DVC neurons examined for responses to GD, 23 were excited (GD-EXC and 19 were inhibited (GD-INH. Fifteen of 20 GD-EXC neurons were excited, whereas 11 out of 14 GD-INH neurons were suppressed by α-MSH. All these responses were abolished by pretreatment with the MC3/4R antagonist, SHU9119. In conclusion, the activity of glucose-sensitive neurons and GD-sensitive neurons in the hypothalamus and DVC can be modulated by α-MSH.

  15. Collective excitability in a mesoscopic neuronal model of epileptic activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jedynak, Maciej; Pons, Antonio J.; Garcia-Ojalvo, Jordi

    2018-01-01

    At the mesoscopic scale, the brain can be understood as a collection of interacting neuronal oscillators, but the extent to which its sustained activity is due to coupling among brain areas is still unclear. Here we address this issue in a simplified situation by examining the effect of coupling between two cortical columns described via Jansen-Rit neural mass models. Our results show that coupling between the two neuronal populations gives rise to stochastic initiations of sustained collective activity, which can be interpreted as epileptic events. For large enough coupling strengths, termination of these events results mainly from the emergence of synchronization between the columns, and thus it is controlled by coupling instead of noise. Stochastic triggering and noise-independent durations are characteristic of excitable dynamics, and thus we interpret our results in terms of collective excitability.

  16. Insulin reduces neuronal excitability by turning on GABA(A channels that generate tonic current.

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    Zhe Jin

    Full Text Available Insulin signaling to the brain is important not only for metabolic homeostasis but also for higher brain functions such as cognition. GABA (γ-aminobutyric acid decreases neuronal excitability by activating GABA(A channels that generate phasic and tonic currents. The level of tonic inhibition in neurons varies. In the hippocampus, interneurons and dentate gyrus granule cells normally have significant tonic currents under basal conditions in contrast to the CA1 pyramidal neurons where it is minimal. Here we show in acute rat hippocampal slices that insulin (1 nM "turns on" new extrasynaptic GABA(A channels in CA1 pyramidal neurons resulting in decreased frequency of action potential firing. The channels are activated by more than million times lower GABA concentrations than synaptic channels, generate tonic currents and show outward rectification. The single-channel current amplitude is related to the GABA concentration resulting in a single-channel GABA affinity (EC(50 in intact CA1 neurons of 17 pM with the maximal current amplitude reached with 1 nM GABA. They are inhibited by GABA(A antagonists but have novel pharmacology as the benzodiazepine flumazenil and zolpidem are inverse agonists. The results show that tonic rather than synaptic conductances regulate basal neuronal excitability when significant tonic conductance is expressed and demonstrate an unexpected hormonal control of the inhibitory channel subtypes and excitability of hippocampal neurons. The insulin-induced new channels provide a specific target for rescuing cognition in health and disease.

  17. On Rhythms in Neuronal Networks with Recurrent Excitation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Börgers, Christoph; Takeuchi, R Melody; Rosebrock, Daniel T

    2018-02-01

    We investigate rhythms in networks of neurons with recurrent excitation, that is, with excitatory cells exciting each other. Recurrent excitation can sustain activity even when the cells in the network are driven below threshold, too weak to fire on their own. This sort of "reverberating" activity is often thought to be the basis of working memory. Recurrent excitation can also lead to "runaway" transitions, sudden transitions to high-frequency firing; this may be related to epileptic seizures. Not all fundamental questions about these phenomena have been answered with clarity in the literature. We focus on three questions here: (1) How much recurrent excitation is needed to sustain reverberating activity? How does the answer depend on parameters? (2) Is there a positive minimum frequency of reverberating activity, a positive "onset frequency"? How does it depend on parameters? (3) When do runaway transitions occur? For reduced models, we give mathematical answers to these questions. We also examine computationally to which extent our findings are reflected in the behavior of biophysically more realistic model networks. Our main results can be summarized as follows. (1) Reverberating activity can be fueled by extremely weak slow recurrent excitation, but only by sufficiently strong fast recurrent excitation. (2) The onset of reverberating activity, as recurrent excitation is strengthened or external drive is raised, occurs at a positive frequency. It is faster when the external drive is weaker (and the recurrent excitation stronger). It is slower when the recurrent excitation has a longer decay time constant. (3) Runaway transitions occur only with fast, not with slow, recurrent excitation. We also demonstrate that the relation between reverberating activity fueled by recurrent excitation and runaway transitions can be visualized in an instructive way by a (generalized) cusp catastrophe surface.

  18. [Changes of the neuronal membrane excitability as cellular mechanisms of learning and memory].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaĭnutdinov, Kh L; Andrianov, V V; Gaĭnutdinova, T Kh

    2011-01-01

    In the presented review given literature and results of own studies of dynamics of electrical characteristics of neurons, which change are included in processes both an elaboration of learning, and retention of the long-term memory. Literary datas and our results allow to conclusion, that long-term retention of behavioural reactions during learning is accompanied not only by changing efficiency of synaptic transmission, as well as increasing of excitability of command neurons of the defensive reflex. This means, that in the process of learning are involved long-term changes of the characteristics a membrane of certain elements of neuronal network, dependent from the metabolism of the cells. see text). Thou phenomena possible mark as cellular (electrophysiological) correlates of long-term plastic modifications of the behaviour. The analyses of having results demonstrates an important role of membrane characteristics of neurons (their excitability) and parameters an synaptic transmission not only in initial stage of learning, as well as in long-term modifications of the behaviour (long-term memory).

  19. Menthol Enhances Nicotine Reward-Related Behavior by Potentiating Nicotine-Induced Changes in nAChR Function, nAChR Upregulation, and DA Neuron Excitability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henderson, Brandon J; Wall, Teagan R; Henley, Beverley M; Kim, Charlene H; McKinney, Sheri; Lester, Henry A

    2017-11-01

    Understanding why the quit rate among smokers of menthol cigarettes is lower than non-menthol smokers requires identifying the neurons that are altered by nicotine, menthol, and acetylcholine. Dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) mediate the positive reinforcing effects of nicotine. Using mouse models, we show that menthol enhances nicotine-induced changes in nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) expressed on midbrain DA neurons. Menthol plus nicotine upregulates nAChR number and function on midbrain DA neurons more than nicotine alone. Menthol also enhances nicotine-induced changes in DA neuron excitability. In a conditioned place preference (CPP) assay, we observed that menthol plus nicotine produces greater reward-related behavior than nicotine alone. Our results connect changes in midbrain DA neurons to menthol-induced enhancements of nicotine reward-related behavior and may help explain how smokers of menthol cigarettes exhibit reduced cessation rates.

  20. Endogenous opioids regulate moment-to-moment neuronal communication and excitability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winters, Bryony L.; Gregoriou, Gabrielle C.; Kissiwaa, Sarah A.; Wells, Oliver A.; Medagoda, Danashi I.; Hermes, Sam M.; Burford, Neil T.; Alt, Andrew; Aicher, Sue A.; Bagley, Elena E.

    2017-01-01

    Fear and emotional learning are modulated by endogenous opioids but the cellular basis for this is unknown. The intercalated cells (ITCs) gate amygdala output and thus regulate the fear response. Here we find endogenous opioids are released by synaptic stimulation to act via two distinct mechanisms within the main ITC cluster. Endogenously released opioids inhibit glutamate release through the δ-opioid receptor (DOR), an effect potentiated by a DOR-positive allosteric modulator. Postsynaptically, the opioids activate a potassium conductance through the μ-opioid receptor (MOR), suggesting for the first time that endogenously released opioids directly regulate neuronal excitability. Ultrastructural localization of endogenous ligands support these functional findings. This study demonstrates a new role for endogenously released opioids as neuromodulators engaged by synaptic activity to regulate moment-to-moment neuronal communication and excitability. These distinct actions through MOR and DOR may underlie the opposing effect of these receptor systems on anxiety and fear. PMID:28327612

  1. Ghrelin receptors mediate ghrelin-induced excitation of agouti-related protein/neuropeptide Y but not pro-opiomelanocortin neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Shao-Rui; Chen, Hong; Zhou, Jing-Jing; Pradhan, Geetali; Sun, Yuxiang; Pan, Hui-Lin; Li, De-Pei

    2017-08-01

    Ghrelin increases food intake and body weight by stimulating orexigenic agouti-related protein (AgRP)/neuropeptide Y (NPY) neurons and inhibiting anorexic pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) neurons in the hypothalamus. Growth hormone secretagogue receptor (Ghsr) mediates the effect of ghrelin on feeding behavior and energy homeostasis. However, the role of Ghsr in the ghrelin effect on these two populations of neurons is unclear. We hypothesized that Ghsr mediates the effect of ghrelin on AgRP and POMC neurons. In this study, we determined whether Ghsr similarly mediates the effects of ghrelin on AgRP/NPY and POMC neurons using cell type-specific Ghsr-knockout mice. Perforated whole-cell recordings were performed on green fluorescent protein-tagged AgRP/NPY and POMC neurons in the arcuate nucleus in hypothalamic slices. In Ghsr +/+ mice, ghrelin (100 nM) significantly increased the firing activity of AgRP/NPY neurons but inhibited the firing activity of POMC neurons. In Ghsr -/- mice, the excitatory effect of ghrelin on AgRP/NPY neurons was abolished. Ablation of Ghsr also eliminated ghrelin-induced increases in the frequency of GABAergic inhibitory postsynaptic currents of POMC neurons. Strikingly, ablation of Ghsr converted the ghrelin effect on POMC neurons from inhibition to excitation. Des-acylated ghrelin had no such effect on POMC neurons in Ghsr -/- mice. In both Ghsr +/+ and Ghsr -/- mice, blocking GABA A receptors with gabazine increased the basal firing activity of POMC neurons, and ghrelin further increased the firing activity of POMC neurons in the presence of gabazine. Our findings provide unequivocal evidence that Ghsr is essential for ghrelin-induced excitation of AgRP/NPY neurons. However, ghrelin excites POMC neurons through an unidentified mechanism that is distinct from conventional Ghsr. © 2017 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  2. A neuronal acetylcholine receptor regulates the balance of muscle excitation and inhibition in Caenorhabditis elegans.

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    Maelle Jospin

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available In the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, cholinergic motor neurons stimulate muscle contraction as well as activate GABAergic motor neurons that inhibit contraction of the contralateral muscles. Here, we describe the composition of an ionotropic acetylcholine receptor that is required to maintain excitation of the cholinergic motor neurons. We identified a gain-of-function mutation that leads to spontaneous muscle convulsions. The mutation is in the pore domain of the ACR-2 acetylcholine receptor subunit and is identical to a hyperactivating mutation in the muscle receptor of patients with myasthenia gravis. Screens for suppressors of the convulsion phenotype led to the identification of other receptor subunits. Cell-specific rescue experiments indicate that these subunits function in the cholinergic motor neurons. Expression of these subunits in Xenopus oocytes demonstrates that the functional receptor is comprised of three alpha-subunits, UNC-38, UNC-63 and ACR-12, and two non-alpha-subunits, ACR-2 and ACR-3. Although this receptor exhibits a partially overlapping subunit composition with the C. elegans muscle acetylcholine receptor, it shows distinct pharmacology. Recordings from intact animals demonstrate that loss-of-function mutations in acr-2 reduce the excitability of the cholinergic motor neurons. By contrast, the acr-2(gf mutation leads to a hyperactivation of cholinergic motor neurons and an inactivation of downstream GABAergic motor neurons in a calcium dependent manner. Presumably, this imbalance between excitatory and inhibitory input into muscles leads to convulsions. These data indicate that the ACR-2 receptor is important for the coordinated excitation and inhibition of body muscles underlying sinusoidal movement.

  3. MMPs and soluble ICAM-5 increase neuronal excitability within in vitro networks of hippocampal neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark Niedringhaus

    Full Text Available Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs are zinc-dependent endopeptidases that are released from neurons in an activity dependent manner. Published studies suggest their activity is important to varied forms of learning and memory. At least one MMP can stimulate an increase in the size of dendritic spines, structures which represent the post synaptic component for a large number of glutamatergic synapses. This change may be associated with increased synaptic glutamate receptor incorporation, and an increased amplitude and/or frequency of α-amino-3-hydroxyl-5-methyl-4-isoxazole-propionate (AMPA mini excitatory post-synaptic currents (EPSCs. An associated increase in the probability of action potential occurrence would be expected. While the mechanism(s by which MMPs may influence synaptic structure and function are not completely understood, MMP dependent shedding of specific cell adhesion molecules (CAMs could play an important role. CAMs are ideally positioned to be cleaved by synaptically released MMPs, and shed N terminal domains could potentially interact with previously unengaged integrins to stimulate dendritic actin polymerization with spine expansion. In the present study, we have used multielectrode arrays (MEAs to investigate MMP and soluble CAM dependent changes in neuronal activity recorded from hippocampal cultures. We have focused on intercellular adhesion molecule-5 (ICAM-5 in particular, as this CAM is expressed on glutamatergic dendrites and shed in an MMP dependent manner. We show that chemical long-term potentiation (cLTP evoked changes in recorded activity, and the dynamics of action potential bursts in particular, are altered by MMP inhibition. A blocking antibody to β(1 integrins has a similar effect. We also show that the ectodomain of ICAM-5 can stimulate β(1 integrin dependent increases in spike counts and burst number. These results support a growing body of literature suggesting that MMPs have important effects on neuronal

  4. The proinflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor-α excites subfornical organ neurons.

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    Simpson, Nick J; Ferguson, Alastair V

    2017-09-01

    Tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) is a proinflammatory cytokine implicated in cardiovascular and autonomic regulation via actions in the central nervous system. TNF-α -/- mice do not develop angiotensin II (ANG II)-induced hypertension, and administration of TNF-α into the bloodstream of rats increases blood pressure and sympathetic tone. Recent studies have shown that lesion of the subfornical organ (SFO) attenuates the hypertensive and autonomic effects of TNF-α, while direct administration of TNF-α into the SFO increases blood pressure, suggesting the SFO to be a key site for the actions of TNF-α. Therefore, we used patch-clamp techniques to examine both acute and long-term effects of TNF-α on the excitability of Sprague-Dawley rat SFO neurons. It was observed that acute bath application of TNF-α depolarized SFO neurons and subsequently increased action potential firing rate. Furthermore, the magnitude of depolarization and the proportion of depolarized SFO neurons were concentration dependent. Interestingly, following 24-h incubation with TNF-α, the basal firing rate of the SFO neurons was increased and the rheobase was decreased, suggesting that TNF-α elevates SFO neuron excitability. This effect was likely mediated by the transient sodium current, as TNF-α increased the magnitude of the current and lowered its threshold of activation. In contrast, TNF-α did not appear to modulate either the delayed rectifier potassium current or the transient potassium current. These data suggest that acute and long-term TNF-α exposure elevates SFO neuron activity, providing a basis for TNF-α hypertensive and sympathetic effects. NEW & NOTEWORTHY Considerable recent evidence has suggested important links between inflammation and the pathological mechanisms underlying hypertension. The present study describes cellular mechanisms through which acute and long-term exposure of tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) influences the activity of subfornical organ neurons by

  5. Adiponectin regulates contextual fear extinction and intrinsic excitability of dentate gyrus granule neurons through AdipoR2 receptors.

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    Zhang, D; Wang, X; Wang, B; Garza, J C; Fang, X; Wang, J; Scherer, P E; Brenner, R; Zhang, W; Lu, X-Y

    2017-07-01

    Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is characterized by exaggerated fear expression and impaired fear extinction. The underlying molecular and cellular mechanisms of PTSD are largely unknown. The current pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatments for PTSD are either ineffective or temporary with high relapse rates. Here we report that adiponectin-deficient mice exhibited normal contextual fear conditioning but displayed slower extinction learning. Infusions of adiponectin into the dentate gyrus (DG) of the hippocampus in fear-conditioned mice facilitated extinction of contextual fear. Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings in brain slices revealed that intrinsic excitability of DG granule neurons was enhanced by adiponectin deficiency and suppressed after treatment with the adiponectin mimetic AdipoRon, which were associated with increased input resistance and hyperpolarized resting membrane potential, respectively. Moreover, deletion of AdipoR2, but not AdipoR1 in the DG, resulted in augmented fear expression and reduced extinction, accompanied by intrinsic hyperexcitability of DG granule neurons. Adiponectin and AdipoRon failed to induce facilitation of fear extinction and elicit inhibition of intrinsic excitability of DG neurons in AdipoR2 knockout mice. These results indicated that adiponectin action via AdipoR2 was both necessary and sufficient for extinction of contextual fear and intrinsic excitability of DG granule neurons, implying that enhancing or dampening DG neuronal excitability may cause resistance to or facilitation of extinction. Therefore, our findings provide a functional link between adiponectin/AdipoR2 activation, DG neuronal excitability and contextual fear extinction, and suggest that targeting adiponectin/AdipoR2 may be used to strengthen extinction-based exposure therapies for PTSD.

  6. Cdk5 modulates cocaine reward, motivation, and striatal neuron excitability.

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    Benavides, David R; Quinn, Jennifer J; Zhong, Ping; Hawasli, Ammar H; DiLeone, Ralph J; Kansy, Janice W; Olausson, Peter; Yan, Zhen; Taylor, Jane R; Bibb, James A

    2007-11-21

    Cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5) regulates dopamine neurotransmission and has been suggested to serve as a homeostatic target of chronic psychostimulant exposure. To study the role of Cdk5 in the modulation of the cellular and behavioral effects of psychoactive drugs of abuse, we developed Cre/loxP conditional knock-out systems that allow temporal and spatial control of Cdk5 expression in the adult brain. Here, we report the generation of Cdk5 conditional knock-out (cKO) mice using the alphaCaMKII promoter-driven Cre transgenic line (CaMKII-Cre). In this model system, loss of Cdk5 in the adult forebrain increased the psychomotor-activating effects of cocaine. Additionally, these CaMKII-Cre Cdk5 cKO mice show enhanced incentive motivation for food as assessed by instrumental responding on a progressive ratio schedule of reinforcement. Behavioral changes were accompanied by increased excitability of medium spiny neurons in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) in Cdk5 cKO mice. To study NAc-specific effects of Cdk5, another model system was used in which recombinant adeno-associated viruses expressing Cre recombinase caused restricted loss of Cdk5 in NAc neurons. Targeted knock-out of Cdk5 in the NAc facilitated cocaine-induced locomotor sensitization and conditioned place preference for cocaine. These results suggest that Cdk5 acts as a negative regulator of neuronal excitability in the NAc and that Cdk5 may govern the behavioral effects of cocaine and motivation for reinforcement.

  7. Can inhibitory and facilitatory kinesiotaping techniques affect motor neuron excitability? A randomized cross-over trial.

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    Yoosefinejad, Amin Kordi; Motealleh, Alireza; Abbasalipur, Shekoofeh; Shahroei, Mahan; Sobhani, Sobhan

    2017-04-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the immediate effects of facilitatory and inhibitory kinesiotaping on motor neuron excitability. Randomized cross-over trial. Twenty healthy people received inhibitory and facilitatory kinesiotaping on two testing days. The H- and M-waves of the lateral gasterocnemius were recorded before and immediately after applying the two modes of taping. The Hmax/Mmax ratio (a measure of motor neuron excitability) was determined and analyzed. The mean Hmax/Mmax ratios were -0.013 (95% CI: -0.033 to 0.007) for inhibitory taping and 0.007 (95% CI: -0.013 to 0.027) for facilitatory taping. The mean difference between groups was -0.020 (95% CI: -0.048 to 0.008). The statistical model revealed no significant differences between the two interventions (P = 0.160). Furthermore, there were no within-group differences in Hmax/Mmax ratio for either group. Our findings did not disclose signs of immediate change in motor neuron excitability in the lateral gasterocnemius. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  8. Conditional Lyapunov exponents and transfer entropy in coupled bursting neurons under excitation and coupling mismatch

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    Soriano, Diogo C.; Santos, Odair V. dos; Suyama, Ricardo; Fazanaro, Filipe I.; Attux, Romis

    2018-03-01

    This work has a twofold aim: (a) to analyze an alternative approach for computing the conditional Lyapunov exponent (λcmax) aiming to evaluate the synchronization stability between nonlinear oscillators without solving the classical variational equations for the synchronization error dynamical system. In this first framework, an analytic reference value for λcmax is also provided in the context of Duffing master-slave scenario and precisely evaluated by the proposed numerical approach; (b) to apply this technique to the study of synchronization stability in chaotic Hindmarsh-Rose (HR) neuronal models under uni- and bi-directional resistive coupling and different excitation bias, which also considered the root mean square synchronization error, information theoretic measures and asymmetric transfer entropy in order to offer a better insight of the synchronization phenomenon. In particular, statistical and information theoretical measures were able to capture similarity increase between the neuronal oscillators just after a critical coupling value in accordance to the largest conditional Lyapunov exponent behavior. On the other hand, transfer entropy was able to detect neuronal emitter influence even in a weak coupling condition, i.e. under the increase of conditional Lyapunov exponent and apparently desynchronization tendency. In the performed set of numerical simulations, the synchronization measures were also evaluated for a two-dimensional parameter space defined by the neuronal coupling (emitter to a receiver neuron) and the (receiver) excitation current. Such analysis is repeated for different feedback couplings as well for different (emitter) excitation currents, revealing interesting characteristics of the attained synchronization region and conditions that facilitate the emergence of the synchronous behavior. These results provide a more detailed numerical insight of the underlying behavior of a HR in the excitation and coupling space, being in accordance

  9. Alterations of cortical GABA neurons and network oscillations in schizophrenia.

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    Gonzalez-Burgos, Guillermo; Hashimoto, Takanori; Lewis, David A

    2010-08-01

    The hypothesis that alterations of cortical inhibitory gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) neurons are a central element in the pathology of schizophrenia has emerged from a series of postmortem studies. How such abnormalities may contribute to the clinical features of schizophrenia has been substantially informed by a convergence with basic neuroscience studies revealing complex details of GABA neuron function in the healthy brain. Importantly, activity of the parvalbumin-containing class of GABA neurons has been linked to the production of cortical network oscillations. Furthermore, growing knowledge supports the concept that gamma band oscillations (30-80 Hz) are an essential mechanism for cortical information transmission and processing. Herein we review recent studies further indicating that inhibition from parvalbumin-positive GABA neurons is necessary to produce gamma oscillations in cortical circuits; provide an update on postmortem studies documenting that deficits in the expression of glutamic acid decarboxylase67, which accounts for most GABA synthesis in the cortex, are widely observed in schizophrenia; and describe studies using novel, noninvasive approaches directly assessing potential relations between alterations in GABA, oscillations, and cognitive function in schizophrenia.

  10. Association between tetrodotoxin resistant channels and lipid rafts regulates sensory neuron excitability.

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    Alessandro Pristerà

    Full Text Available Voltage-gated sodium channels (VGSCs play a key role in the initiation and propagation of action potentials in neurons. Na(V1.8 is a tetrodotoxin (TTX resistant VGSC expressed in nociceptors, peripheral small-diameter neurons able to detect noxious stimuli. Na(V1.8 underlies the vast majority of sodium currents during action potentials. Many studies have highlighted a key role for Na(V1.8 in inflammatory and chronic pain models. Lipid rafts are microdomains of the plasma membrane highly enriched in cholesterol and sphingolipids. Lipid rafts tune the spatial and temporal organisation of proteins and lipids on the plasma membrane. They are thought to act as platforms on the membrane where proteins and lipids can be trafficked, compartmentalised and functionally clustered. In the present study we investigated Na(V1.8 sub-cellular localisation and explored the idea that it is associated with lipid rafts in nociceptors. We found that Na(V1.8 is distributed in clusters along the axons of DRG neurons in vitro and ex vivo. We also demonstrated, by biochemical and imaging studies, that Na(V1.8 is associated with lipid rafts along the sciatic nerve ex vivo and in DRG neurons in vitro. Moreover, treatments with methyl-β-cyclodextrin (MβCD and 7-ketocholesterol (7KC led to the dissociation between rafts and Na(V1.8. By calcium imaging we demonstrated that the lack of association between rafts and Na(V1.8 correlated with impaired neuronal excitability, highlighted by a reduction in the number of neurons able to conduct mechanically- and chemically-evoked depolarisations. These findings reveal the sub-cellular localisation of Na(V1.8 in nociceptors and highlight the importance of the association between Na(V1.8 and lipid rafts in the control of nociceptor excitability.

  11. Histamine Excites Rat Superior Vestibular Nuclear Neurons via Postsynaptic H1 and H2 Receptors in vitro

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    Qian-Xing Zhuang

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available The superior vestibular nucleus (SVN, which holds a key position in vestibulo-ocular reflexes and nystagmus, receives direct hypothalamic histaminergic innervations. By using rat brainstem slice preparations and extracellular unitary recordings, we investigated the effect of histamine on SVN neurons and the underlying receptor mechanisms. Bath application of histamine evoked an excitatory response of the SVN neurons, which was not blocked by the low-Ca2+/high-Mg2+ medium, indicating a direct postsynaptic effect of the amine. Selective histamine H1 receptor agonist 2-pyridylethylamine and H2 receptor agonist dimaprit, rather than VUF8430, a selective H4 receptor agonist, mimicked the excitation of histamine on SVN neurons. In addition, selective H1 receptor antagonist mepyramine and H2 receptor antagonist ranitidine, but not JNJ7777120, a selective H4 receptor antagonist, partially blocked the excitatory response of SVN neurons to histamine. Moreover, mepyramine together with ranitidine nearly totally blocked the histamine-induced excitation. Immunostainings further showed that histamine H1 and H2 instead of H4 receptors existed in the SVN. These results demonstrate that histamine excites the SVN neurons via postsynaptic histamine H1 and H2 receptors, and suggest that the central histaminergic innervation from the hypothalamus may actively bias the SVN neuronal activity and subsequently modulate the SVN-mediated vestibular functions and gaze control.

  12. Opposite effects of low and high doses of Abeta42 on electrical network and neuronal excitability in the rat prefrontal cortex.

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    Wang, Yun; Zhang, Guangping; Zhou, Hongwei; Barakat, Amey; Querfurth, Henry

    2009-12-21

    Changes in neuronal synchronization have been found in patients and animal models of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Synchronized behaviors within neuronal networks are important to such complex cognitive processes as working memory. The mechanisms behind these changes are not understood but may involve the action of soluble beta-amyloid (Abeta) on electrical networks. In order to determine if Abeta can induce changes in neuronal synchronization, the activities of pyramidal neurons were recorded in rat prefrontal cortical (PFC) slices under calcium-free conditions using multi-neuron patch clamp technique. Electrical network activities and synchronization among neurons were significantly inhibited by low dose Abeta42 (1 nM) and initially by high dose Abeta42 (500 nM). However, prolonged application of high dose Abeta42 resulted in network activation and tonic firing. Underlying these observations, we discovered that prolonged application of low and high doses of Abeta42 induced opposite changes in action potential (AP)-threshold and after-hyperpolarization (AHP) of neurons. Accordingly, low dose Abeta42 significantly increased the AP-threshold and deepened the AHP, making neurons less excitable. In contrast, high dose Abeta42 significantly reduced the AP-threshold and shallowed the AHP, making neurons more excitable. These results support a model that low dose Abeta42 released into the interstitium has a physiologic feedback role to dampen electrical network activity by reducing neuronal excitability. Higher concentrations of Abeta42 over time promote supra-synchronization between individual neurons by increasing their excitability. The latter may disrupt frontal-based cognitive processing and in some cases lead to epileptiform discharges.

  13. Opposite effects of low and high doses of Abeta42 on electrical network and neuronal excitability in the rat prefrontal cortex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yun Wang

    Full Text Available Changes in neuronal synchronization have been found in patients and animal models of Alzheimer's disease (AD. Synchronized behaviors within neuronal networks are important to such complex cognitive processes as working memory. The mechanisms behind these changes are not understood but may involve the action of soluble beta-amyloid (Abeta on electrical networks. In order to determine if Abeta can induce changes in neuronal synchronization, the activities of pyramidal neurons were recorded in rat prefrontal cortical (PFC slices under calcium-free conditions using multi-neuron patch clamp technique. Electrical network activities and synchronization among neurons were significantly inhibited by low dose Abeta42 (1 nM and initially by high dose Abeta42 (500 nM. However, prolonged application of high dose Abeta42 resulted in network activation and tonic firing. Underlying these observations, we discovered that prolonged application of low and high doses of Abeta42 induced opposite changes in action potential (AP-threshold and after-hyperpolarization (AHP of neurons. Accordingly, low dose Abeta42 significantly increased the AP-threshold and deepened the AHP, making neurons less excitable. In contrast, high dose Abeta42 significantly reduced the AP-threshold and shallowed the AHP, making neurons more excitable. These results support a model that low dose Abeta42 released into the interstitium has a physiologic feedback role to dampen electrical network activity by reducing neuronal excitability. Higher concentrations of Abeta42 over time promote supra-synchronization between individual neurons by increasing their excitability. The latter may disrupt frontal-based cognitive processing and in some cases lead to epileptiform discharges.

  14. Characteristics and mechanisms of hypothalamic neuronal fatty acid sensing.

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    Le Foll, Christelle; Irani, Boman G; Magnan, Christophe; Dunn-Meynell, Ambrose A; Levin, Barry E

    2009-09-01

    We assessed the mechanisms by which specialized hypothalamic ventromedial nucleus (VMN) neurons utilize both glucose and long-chain fatty acids as signaling molecules to alter their activity as a potential means of regulating energy homeostasis. Fura-2 calcium (Ca(2+)) and membrane potential dye imaging, together with pharmacological agents, were used to assess the mechanisms by which oleic acid (OA) alters the activity of dissociated VMN neurons from 3- to 4-wk-old rats. OA excited up to 43% and inhibited up to 29% of all VMN neurons independently of glucose concentrations. In those neurons excited by both 2.5 mM glucose and OA, OA had a concentration-dependent effective excitatory concentration (EC(50)) of 13.1 nM. Neurons inhibited by both 2.5 mM glucose and OA had an effective inhibitory concentration (IC(50)) of 93 nM. At 0.5 mM glucose, OA had markedly different effects on these same neurons. Inhibition of carnitine palmitoyltransferase, reactive oxygen species formation, long-chain acetyl-CoA synthetase and ATP-sensitive K(+) channel activity or activation of uncoupling protein 2 (UCP2) accounted for only approximately 20% of OA's excitatory effects and approximately 40% of its inhibitory effects. Inhibition of CD36, a fatty acid transporter that can alter cell function independently of intracellular fatty acid metabolism, reduced the effects of OA by up to 45%. Thus OA affects VMN neuronal activity through multiple pathways. In glucosensing neurons, its effects are glucose dependent. This glucose-OA interaction provides a potential mechanism whereby such "metabolic sensing" neurons can respond to differences in the metabolic states associated with fasting and feeding.

  15. Effects of Taurine Supplementation on Neuronal Excitability and Glucose Homeostasis.

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    El Idrissi, Abdeslem; El Hilali, Fatiha; Rotondo, Salvatore; Sidime, Francoise

    2017-01-01

    In this study we examined the role of chronic taurine supplementation on plasma glucose homeostasis and brain excitability through activation of the insulin receptor. FVB/NJ male mice were supplemented with taurine in drinking water (0.05% w/v) for 4 weeks and subjected to a glucose tolerance test (7.5 mg/kg BW) after 12 h fasting. We found that taurine-fed mice were slightly hypoglycemic prior to glucose injection and showed significantly reduced plasma glucose at 30 and 60 min post-glucose injection when compared to control mice. Previously, we reported that taurine supplementation induces biochemical changes that target the GABAergic system. Those studies show that taurine-fed mice are hyperexcitable, have reduced GABA A receptors expression and increased GAD and somatostatin expression in the brain. In this study, we found that taurine-fed mice had a significant increase in insulin receptor (IR) immuno-reactivity in the pancreas and all brain regions examined. At the mRNA level, we found that the IR showed differential regional expression. Surprisingly, we found that neurons express the gene for insulin and that taurine had a significant role in regulating insulin gene expression. We propose that increased insulin production and secretion in taurine-fed mice cause an increase activation of the central IR and may be partially responsible for the increased neuronal excitability observed in taurine supplemented mice. Furthermore, the high levels of neuronal insulin expression and its regulation by taurine implicates taurine in the regulation of metabolic homeostasis.

  16. METHYLMERCURY IMPAIRS NEURONAL DIFFERENTIATION BY ALTERING NEUROTROPHIN SIGNALING.

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    In previous in vivo studies, we observed that developmental exposure to CH3Hg can alter neocortical morphology and neurotrophin signaling. Using primed PC12 cells as a model system for neuronal differentiation, we examined the hypothesis that the developmental effects of CH3Hg ma...

  17. Glucose sensing by GABAergic neurons in the mouse nucleus tractus solitarii

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    Boychuk, Carie R.; Gyarmati, Peter; Xu, Hong

    2015-01-01

    Changes in blood glucose concentration alter autonomic function in a manner consistent with altered neural activity in brain regions controlling digestive processes, including neurons in the brain stem nucleus tractus solitarii (NTS), which process viscerosensory information. With whole cell or on-cell patch-clamp recordings, responses to elevating glucose concentration from 2.5 to 15 mM were assessed in identified GABAergic NTS neurons in slices from transgenic mice that express EGFP in a subset of GABA neurons. Single-cell real-time RT-PCR was also performed to detect glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD67) in recorded neurons. In most identified GABA neurons (73%), elevating glucose concentration from 2.5 to 15 mM resulted in either increased (40%) or decreased (33%) neuronal excitability, reflected by altered membrane potential and/or action potential firing. Effects on membrane potential were maintained when action potentials or fast synaptic inputs were blocked, suggesting direct glucose sensing by GABA neurons. Glucose-inhibited GABA neurons were found predominantly in the lateral NTS, whereas glucose-excited cells were mainly in the medial NTS, suggesting regional segregation of responses. Responses were prevented in the presence of glucosamine, a glucokinase (GCK) inhibitor. Depolarizing responses were prevented when KATP channel activity was blocked with tolbutamide. Whereas effects on synaptic input to identified GABAergic neurons were variable in GABA neurons, elevating glucose increased glutamate release subsequent to stimulation of tractus solitarius in unlabeled, unidentified neurons. These results indicate that GABAergic NTS neurons act as GCK-dependent glucose sensors in the vagal complex, providing a means of modulating central autonomic signals when glucose is elevated. PMID:26084907

  18. Reduced Hyperpolarization-Activated Current Contributes to Enhanced Intrinsic Excitability in Cultured Hippocampal Neurons from PrP(-/-) Mice.

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    Fan, Jing; Stemkowski, Patrick L; Gandini, Maria A; Black, Stefanie A; Zhang, Zizhen; Souza, Ivana A; Chen, Lina; Zamponi, Gerald W

    2016-01-01

    Genetic ablation of cellular prion protein (PrP(C)) has been linked to increased neuronal excitability and synaptic activity in the hippocampus. We have previously shown that synaptic activity in hippocampi of PrP-null mice is increased due to enhanced N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) function. Here, we focused on the effect of PRNP gene knock-out (KO) on intrinsic neuronal excitability, and in particular, the underlying ionic mechanism in hippocampal neurons cultured from P0 mouse pups. We found that the absence of PrP(C) profoundly affected the firing properties of cultured hippocampal neurons in the presence of synaptic blockers. The membrane impedance was greater in PrP-null neurons, and this difference was abolished by the hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN) channel blocker ZD7288 (100 μM). HCN channel activity appeared to be functionally regulated by PrP(C). The amplitude of voltage sag, a characteristic of activating HCN channel current (I h), was decreased in null mice. Moreover, I h peak current was reduced, along with a hyperpolarizing shift in activation gating and slower kinetics. However, neither HCN1 nor HCN2 formed a biochemical complex with PrP(C). These results suggest that the absence of PrP downregulates the activity of HCN channels through activation of a cell signaling pathway rather than through direct interactions. This in turn contributes to an increase in membrane impedance to potentiate neuronal excitability.

  19. Dissecting mechanisms of brain aging by studying the intrinsic excitability of neurons

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    Valerio eRizzo

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Several studies using vertebrate and invertebrate animal models have shown aging associated changes in brain function. Importantly, changes in soma size, loss or regression of dendrites and dendritic spines and alterations in the expression of neurotransmitter receptors in specific neurons were described. Despite this understanding, how aging impacts intrinsic properties of individual neurons or circuits that govern a defined behavior is yet to be determined. Here we discuss current understanding of specific electrophysiological changes in individual neurons and circuits during aging.

  20. Neuron matters: electric activation of neuronal tissue is dependent on the interaction between the neuron and the electric field.

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    Ye, Hui; Steiger, Amanda

    2015-08-12

    In laboratory research and clinical practice, externally-applied electric fields have been widely used to control neuronal activity. It is generally accepted that neuronal excitability is controlled by electric current that depolarizes or hyperpolarizes the excitable cell membrane. What determines the amount of polarization? Research on the mechanisms of electric stimulation focus on the optimal control of the field properties (frequency, amplitude, and direction of the electric currents) to improve stimulation outcomes. Emerging evidence from modeling and experimental studies support the existence of interactions between the targeted neurons and the externally-applied electric fields. With cell-field interaction, we suggest a two-way process. When a neuron is positioned inside an electric field, the electric field will induce a change in the resting membrane potential by superimposing an electrically-induced transmembrane potential (ITP). At the same time, the electric field can be perturbed and re-distributed by the cell. This cell-field interaction may play a significant role in the overall effects of stimulation. The redistributed field can cause secondary effects to neighboring cells by altering their geometrical pattern and amount of membrane polarization. Neurons excited by the externally-applied electric field can also affect neighboring cells by ephaptic interaction. Both aspects of the cell-field interaction depend on the biophysical properties of the neuronal tissue, including geometric (i.e., size, shape, orientation to the field) and electric (i.e., conductivity and dielectricity) attributes of the cells. The biophysical basis of the cell-field interaction can be explained by the electromagnetism theory. Further experimental and simulation studies on electric stimulation of neuronal tissue should consider the prospect of a cell-field interaction, and a better understanding of tissue inhomogeneity and anisotropy is needed to fully appreciate the neural

  1. Migraine strikes as neuronal excitability reaches a tipping point.

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    Marten Scheffer

    Full Text Available Self-propagating waves of cerebral neuronal firing, known as spreading depolarisations, are believed to be at the roots of migraine attacks. We propose that the start of spreading depolarisations corresponds to a critical transition that occurs when dynamic brain networks approach a tipping point. We show that this hypothesis is consistent with current pathogenetic insights and observed dynamics. Our view implies that migraine strikes when modulating factors further raise the neuronal excitability in genetically predisposed subjects to a level where even minor perturbations can trigger spreading depolarisations. A corollary is that recently discovered generic early warning indicators for critical transitions may be used to predict the onset of migraine attacks even before patients are clinically aware. This opens up new avenues for dissecting the mechanisms for the onset of migraine attacks and for identifying novel prophylactic treatment targets for the prevention of attacks.

  2. Shift in the intrinsic excitability of medial prefrontal cortex neurons following training in impulse control and cued-responding tasks.

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    Scott J Hayton

    Full Text Available Impulse control is an executive process that allows animals to inhibit their actions until an appropriate time. Previously, we reported that learning a simple response inhibition task increases AMPA currents at excitatory synapses in the prelimbic region of the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC. Here, we examined whether modifications to intrinsic excitability occurred alongside the synaptic changes. To that end, we trained rats to obtain a food reward in a response inhibition task by withhold responding on a lever until they were signaled to respond. We then measured excitability, using whole-cell patch clamp recordings in brain slices, by quantifying action potentials generated by the injection of depolarizing current steps. Training in this task depressed the excitability of layer V pyramidal neurons of the prelimbic, but not infralimbic, region of the mPFC relative to behavioral controls. This decrease in maximum spiking frequency was significantly correlated with performance on the final session of the task. This change in intrinsic excitability may represent a homeostatic mechanism counterbalancing increased excitatory synaptic inputs onto those neurons in trained rats. Interestingly, subjects trained with a cue that predicted imminent reward availability had increased excitability in infralimbic, but not the prelimbic, pyramidal neurons. This dissociation suggests that both prelimbic and infralimbic neurons are involved in directing action, but specialized for different types of information, inhibitory or anticipatory, respectively.

  3. Maternal mobile phone exposure alters intrinsic electrophysiological properties of CA1 pyramidal neurons in rat offspring.

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    Razavinasab, Moazamehosadat; Moazzami, Kasra; Shabani, Mohammad

    2016-06-01

    Some studies have shown that exposure to electromagnetic field (EMF) may result in structural damage to neurons. In this study, we have elucidated the alteration in the hippocampal function of offspring Wistar rats (n = 8 rats in each group) that were chronically exposed to mobile phones during their gestational period by applying behavioral, histological, and electrophysiological tests. Rats in the EMF group were exposed to 900 MHz pulsed-EMF irradiation for 6 h/day. Whole cell recordings in hippocampal pyramidal cells in the mobile phone groups did show a decrease in neuronal excitability. Mobile phone exposure was mostly associated with a decrease in the number of action potentials fired in spontaneous activity and in response to current injection in both male and female groups. There was an increase in the amplitude of the afterhyperpolarization (AHP) in mobile phone rats compared with the control. The results of the passive avoidance and Morris water maze assessment of learning and memory performance showed that phone exposure significantly altered learning acquisition and memory retention in male and female rats compared with the control rats. Light microscopy study of brain sections of the control and mobile phone-exposed rats showed normal morphology.Our results suggest that exposure to mobile phones adversely affects the cognitive performance of both female and male offspring rats using behavioral and electrophysiological techniques. © The Author(s) 2014.

  4. Pseudorabies virus infection alters neuronal activity and connectivity in vitro.

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    Kelly M McCarthy

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Alpha-herpesviruses, including human herpes simplex virus 1 & 2, varicella zoster virus and the swine pseudorabies virus (PRV, infect the peripheral nervous system of their hosts. Symptoms of infection often include itching, numbness, or pain indicative of altered neurological function. To determine if there is an in vitro electrophysiological correlate to these characteristic in vivo symptoms, we infected cultured rat sympathetic neurons with well-characterized strains of PRV known to produce virulent or attenuated symptoms in animals. Whole-cell patch clamp recordings were made at various times after infection. By 8 hours of infection with virulent PRV, action potential (AP firing rates increased substantially and were accompanied by hyperpolarized resting membrane potentials and spikelet-like events. Coincident with the increase in AP firing rate, adjacent neurons exhibited coupled firing events, first with AP-spikelets and later with near identical resting membrane potentials and AP firing. Small fusion pores between adjacent cell bodies formed early after infection as demonstrated by transfer of the low molecular weight dye, Lucifer Yellow. Later, larger pores formed as demonstrated by transfer of high molecular weight Texas red-dextran conjugates between infected cells. Further evidence for viral-induced fusion pores was obtained by infecting neurons with a viral mutant defective for glycoprotein B, a component of the viral membrane fusion complex. These infected neurons were essentially identical to mock infected neurons: no increased AP firing, no spikelet-like events, and no electrical or dye transfer. Infection with PRV Bartha, an attenuated circuit-tracing strain delayed, but did not eliminate the increased neuronal activity and coupling events. We suggest that formation of fusion pores between infected neurons results in electrical coupling and elevated firing rates, and that these processes may contribute to the altered neural

  5. Excitability of jcBNST neurons is reduced in alcohol-dependent animals during protracted alcohol withdrawal.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Attila Szücs

    Full Text Available Alcohol dependence and withdrawal has been shown to cause neuroadaptive changes at multiple levels of the nervous system. At the neuron level, adaptations of synaptic connections have been extensively studied in a number of brain areas and accumulating evidence also shows the importance of alcohol dependence-related changes in the intrinsic cellular properties of neurons. At the same time, it is still largely unknown how such neural adaptations impact the firing and integrative properties of neurons. To address these problems, here, we analyze physiological properties of neurons in the bed nucleus of stria terminalis (jcBNST in animals with a history of alcohol dependence. As a comprehensive approach, first we measure passive and active membrane properties of neurons using conventional current clamp protocols and then analyze their firing responses under the action of simulated synaptic bombardment via dynamic clamp. We find that most physiological properties as measured by DC current injection are barely affected during protracted withdrawal. However, neuronal excitability as measured from firing responses under simulated synaptic inputs with the dynamic clamp is markedly reduced in all 3 types of jcBNST neurons. These results support the importance of studying the effects of alcohol and drugs of abuse on the firing properties of neurons with dynamic clamp protocols designed to bring the neurons into a high conductance state. Since the jcBNST integrates excitatory inputs from the basolateral amygdala (BLA and cortical inputs from the infralimbic and the insular cortices and in turn is believed to contribute to the inhibitory input to the central nucleus of the amygdala (CeA the reduced excitability of the jcBNST during protracted withdrawal in alcohol-dependent animals will likely affect ability of the jcBNST to shape the activity and output of the CeA.

  6. Connectivity, excitability and activity patterns in neuronal networks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Le Feber, Joost; Stoyanova, Irina I; Chiappalone, Michela

    2014-01-01

    Extremely synchronized firing patterns such as those observed in brain diseases like epilepsy may result from excessive network excitability. Although network excitability is closely related to (excitatory) connectivity, a direct measure for network excitability remains unavailable. Several methods currently exist for estimating network connectivity, most of which are related to cross-correlation. An example is the conditional firing probability (CFP) analysis which calculates the pairwise probability (CFP i,j ) that electrode j records an action potential at time t = τ, given that electrode i recorded a spike at t = 0. However, electrode i often records multiple spikes within the analysis interval, and CFP values are biased by the on-going dynamic state of the network. Here we show that in a linear approximation this bias may be removed by deconvoluting CFP i,j with the autocorrelation of i (i.e. CFP i,i ), to obtain the single pulse response (SPR i,j )—the average response at electrode j to a single spike at electrode i. Thus, in a linear system SPRs would be independent of the dynamic network state. Nonlinear components of synaptic transmission, such as facilitation and short term depression, will however still affect SPRs. Therefore SPRs provide a clean measure of network excitability. We used carbachol and ghrelin to moderately activate cultured cortical networks to affect their dynamic state. Both neuromodulators transformed the bursting firing patterns of the isolated networks into more dispersed firing. We show that the influence of the dynamic state on SPRs is much smaller than the effect on CFPs, but not zero. The remaining difference reflects the alteration in network excitability. We conclude that SPRs are less contaminated by the dynamic network state and that mild excitation may decrease network excitability, possibly through short term synaptic depression. (papers)

  7. Local excitation-inhibition ratio for synfire chain propagation in feed-forward neuronal networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Xinmeng; Yu, Haitao; Wang, Jiang; Liu, Jing; Cao, Yibin; Deng, Bin

    2017-09-01

    A leading hypothesis holds that spiking activity propagates along neuronal sub-populations which are connected in a feed-forward manner, and the propagation efficiency would be affected by the dynamics of sub-populations. In this paper, how the interaction between local excitation and inhibition effects on synfire chain propagation in feed-forward network (FFN) is investigated. The simulation results show that there is an appropriate excitation-inhibition (EI) ratio maximizing the performance of synfire chain propagation. The optimal EI ratio can significantly enhance the selectivity of FFN to synchronous signals, which thereby increases the stability to background noise. Moreover, the effect of network topology on synfire chain propagation is also investigated. It is found that synfire chain propagation can be maximized by an optimal interlayer linking probability. We also find that external noise is detrimental to synchrony propagation by inducing spiking jitter. The results presented in this paper may provide insights into the effects of network dynamics on neuronal computations.

  8. Streptozotocin alters glucose transport, connexin expression and endoplasmic reticulum functions in neurons and astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biswas, Joyshree; Gupta, Sonam; Verma, Dinesh Kumar; Singh, Sarika

    2017-07-25

    The study was undertaken to explore the cell-specific streptozotocin (STZ)-induced mechanistic alterations. STZ-induced rodent model is a well-established experimental model of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and in our previous studies we have established it as an in vitro screening model of AD by employing N2A neuronal cells. Therefore, STZ was selected in the present study to understand the STZ-induced cell-specific alterations by utilizing neuronal N2A and astrocytes C6 cells. Both neuronal and astrocyte cells were treated with STZ at 10, 50, 100 and 1000μM concentrations for 48h. STZ exposure caused significant decline in cellular viability and augmented cytotoxicity of cells involving astrocytes activation. STZ treatment also disrupted the energy metabolism by altered glucose uptake and its transport in both cells as reflected with decreased expression of glucose transporters (GLUT) 1/3. The consequent decrease in ATP level and decreased mitochondrial membrane potential was also observed in both the cells. STZ caused increased intracellular calcium which could cause the initiation of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress. Significant upregulation of ER stress-related markers were observed in both cells after STZ treatment. The cellular communication of astrocytes and neurons was altered as reflected by increased expression of connexin 43 along with DNA fragmentation. STZ-induced apoptotic death was evaluated by elevated expression of caspase-3 and PI/Hoechst staining of cells. In conclusion, study showed that STZ exert alike biochemical alterations, ER stress and cellular apoptosis in both neuronal and astrocyte cells. Copyright © 2017 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Activation of CRH receptor type 1 expressed on glutamatergic neurons increases excitability of CA1 pyramidal neurons by the modulation of voltage-gated ion channels

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    Stephan eKratzer

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH plays an important role in a substantial number of patients with stress-related mental disorders, such as anxiety disorders and depression. CRH has been shown to increase neuronal excitability in the hippocampus, but the underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. The effects of CRH on neuronal excitability were investigated in acute hippocampal brain slices. Population spikes (PS and field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSP were evoked by stimulating Schaffer-collaterals and recorded simultaneously from the somatic and dendritic region of CA1 pyramidal neurons. CRH was found to increase PS amplitudes (mean  Standard error of the mean; 231.8  31.2% of control; n=10 while neither affecting fEPSPs (104.3 ± 4.2%; n=10 nor long-term potentiation (LTP. However, when Schaffer-collaterals were excited via action potentials (APs generated by stimulation of CA3 pyramidal neurons, CRH increased fEPSP amplitudes (119.8 ± 3.6%; n=8 and the magnitude of LTP in the CA1 region. Experiments in slices from transgenic mice revealed that the effect on PS amplitude is mediated exclusively by CRH receptor 1 (CRHR1 expressed on glutamatergic neurons. The effects of CRH on PS were dependent on phosphatase-2B, L- and T-type calcium channels and voltage-gated potassium channels but independent on intracellular Ca2+-elevation. In patch-clamp experiments, CRH increased the frequency and decay times of APs and decreased currents through A-type and delayed-rectifier potassium channels. These results suggest that CRH does not affect synaptic transmission per se, but modulates voltage-gated ion currents important for the generation of APs and hence elevates by this route overall neuronal activity.

  10. Adrenergic Modulation Regulates the Dendritic Excitability of Layer 5 Pyramidal Neurons In Vivo

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    Christina Labarrera

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Summary: The excitability of the apical tuft of layer 5 pyramidal neurons is thought to play a crucial role in behavioral performance and synaptic plasticity. We show that the excitability of the apical tuft is sensitive to adrenergic neuromodulation. Using two-photon dendritic Ca2+ imaging and in vivo whole-cell and extracellular recordings in awake mice, we show that application of the α2A-adrenoceptor agonist guanfacine increases the probability of dendritic Ca2+ events in the tuft and lowers the threshold for dendritic Ca2+ spikes. We further show that these effects are likely to be mediated by the dendritic current Ih. Modulation of Ih in a realistic compartmental model controlled both the generation and magnitude of dendritic calcium spikes in the apical tuft. These findings suggest that adrenergic neuromodulation may affect cognitive processes such as sensory integration, attention, and working memory by regulating the sensitivity of layer 5 pyramidal neurons to top-down inputs. : Labarrera et al. show that noradrenergic neuromodulation can be an effective way to regulate the interaction between different input streams of information processed by an individual neuron. These findings may have important implications for our understanding of how adrenergic neuromodulation affects sensory integration, attention, and working memory. Keywords: cortical layer 5 pyramidal neuron, dendrites, norepinephrine, HCN, Ih, Ca2+ spike, apical tuft, guanfacine, ADHD, somatosensory cortex

  11. Effects of uniform extracellular DC electric fields on excitability in rat hippocampal slices in vitro.

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    Bikson, Marom; Inoue, Masashi; Akiyama, Hiroki; Deans, Jackie K; Fox, John E; Miyakawa, Hiroyoshi; Jefferys, John G R

    2004-05-15

    The effects of uniform steady state (DC) extracellular electric fields on neuronal excitability were characterized in rat hippocampal slices using field, intracellular and voltage-sensitive dye recordings. Small electric fields (tips of basal and apical dendrites. The polarization was biphasic in the mid-apical dendrites; there was a time-dependent shift in the polarity reversal site. DC fields altered the thresholds of action potentials evoked by orthodromic stimulation, and shifted their initiation site along the apical dendrites. Large electric fields could trigger neuronal firing and epileptiform activity, and induce long-term (>1 s) changes in neuronal excitability. Electric fields perpendicular to the apical-dendritic axis did not induce somatic polarization, but did modulate orthodromic responses, indicating an effect on afferents. These results demonstrate that DC fields can modulate neuronal excitability in a time-dependent manner, with no clear threshold, as a result of interactions between neuronal compartments, the non-linear properties of the cell membrane, and effects on afferents.

  12. Glucose Induces Slow-Wave Sleep by Exciting the Sleep-Promoting Neurons in the Ventrolateral Preoptic Nucleus: A New Link between Sleep and Metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varin, Christophe; Rancillac, Armelle; Geoffroy, Hélène; Arthaud, Sébastien; Fort, Patrice; Gallopin, Thierry

    2015-07-08

    Sleep-active neurons located in the ventrolateral preoptic nucleus (VLPO) play a crucial role in the induction and maintenance of slow-wave sleep (SWS). However, the cellular and molecular mechanisms responsible for their activation at sleep onset remain poorly understood. Here, we test the hypothesis that a rise in extracellular glucose concentration in the VLPO can promote sleep by increasing the activity of sleep-promoting VLPO neurons. We find that infusion of a glucose concentration into the VLPO of mice promotes SWS and increases the density of c-Fos-labeled neurons selectively in the VLPO. Moreover, we show in patch-clamp recordings from brain slices that VLPO neurons exhibiting properties of sleep-promoting neurons are selectively excited by glucose within physiological range. This glucose-induced excitation implies the catabolism of glucose, leading to a closure of ATP-sensitive potassium (KATP) channels. The extracellular glucose concentration monitors the gating of KATP channels of sleep-promoting neurons, highlighting that these neurons can adapt their excitability according to the extracellular energy status. Together, these results provide evidence that glucose may participate in the mechanisms of SWS promotion and/or consolidation. Although the brain circuitry underlying vigilance states is well described, the molecular mechanisms responsible for sleep onset remain largely unknown. Combining in vitro and in vivo experiments, we demonstrate that glucose likely contributes to sleep onset facilitation by increasing the excitability of sleep-promoting neurons in the ventrolateral preoptic nucleus (VLPO). We find here that these neurons integrate energetic signals such as ambient glucose directly to regulate vigilance states accordingly. Glucose-induced excitation of sleep-promoting VLPO neurons should therefore be involved in the drowsiness that one feels after a high-sugar meal. This novel mechanism regulating the activity of VLPO neurons reinforces the

  13. Propylparaben reduces the excitability of hippocampal neurons by blocking sodium channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lara-Valderrábano, Leonardo; Rocha, Luisa; Galván, Emilio J

    2016-12-01

    Propylparaben (PPB) is an antimicrobial preservative widely used in food, cosmetics, and pharmaceutics. Virtual screening methodologies predicted anticonvulsant activity of PPB that was confirmed in vivo. Thus, we explored the effects of PPB on the excitability of hippocampal neurons by using standard patch clamp techniques. Bath perfusion of PPB reduced the fast-inactivating sodium current (I Na ) amplitude, causing a hyperpolarizing shift in the inactivation curve of the I Na, and markedly delayed the sodium channel recovery from the inactivation state. Also, PPB effectively suppressed the riluzole-sensitive, persistent sodium current (I NaP ). PPB perfusion also modified the action potential kinetics, and higher concentrations of PPB suppressed the spike activity. Nevertheless, the modulatory effects of PPB did not occur when PPB was internally applied by whole-cell dialysis. These results indicate that PPB reduces the excitability of CA1 pyramidal neurons by modulating voltage-dependent sodium channels. The mechanistic basis of this effect is a marked delay in the recovery from inactivation state of the voltage-sensitive sodium channels. Our results indicate that similar to local anesthetics and anticonvulsant drugs that act on sodium channels, PPB acts in a use-dependent manner. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Prenatal exposure to urban air nanoparticles in mice causes altered neuronal differentiation and depression-like responses.

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    David A Davis

    Full Text Available Emerging evidence suggests that excessive exposure to traffic-derived air pollution during pregnancy may increase the vulnerability to neurodevelopmental alterations that underlie a broad array of neuropsychiatric disorders. We present a mouse model for prenatal exposure to urban freeway nanoparticulate matter (nPM. In prior studies, we developed a model for adult rodent exposure to re-aerosolized urban nPM which caused inflammatory brain responses with altered neuronal glutamatergic functions. nPMs are collected continuously for one month from a local freeway and stored as an aqueous suspension, prior to re-aerosolization for exposure of mice under controlled dose and duration. This paradigm was used for a pilot study of prenatal nPM impact on neonatal neurons and adult behaviors. Adult C57BL/6J female mice were exposed to re-aerosolized nPM (350 µg/m(3 or control filtered ambient air for 10 weeks (3×5 hour exposures per week, encompassing gestation and oocyte maturation prior to mating. Prenatal nPM did not alter litter size, pup weight, or postnatal growth. Neonatal cerebral cortex neurons at 24 hours in vitro showed impaired differentiation, with 50% reduction of stage 3 neurons with long neurites and correspondingly more undifferentiated neurons at Stages 0 and 1. Neuron number after 24 hours of culture was not altered by prenatal nPM exposure. Addition of exogenous nPM (2 µg/ml to the cultures impaired pyramidal neuron Stage 3 differentiation by 60%. Adult males showed increased depression-like responses in the tail-suspension test, but not anxiety-related behaviors. These pilot data suggest that prenatal exposure to nPM can alter neuronal differentiation with gender-specific behavioral sequelae that may be relevant to human prenatal exposure to urban vehicular aerosols.

  15. Synthetic ciguatoxin CTX 3C induces a rapid imbalance in neuronal excitability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martín, Victor; Vale, Carmen; Hirama, Masahiro; Yamashita, Shuji; Rubiolo, Juan Andrés; Vieytes, Mercedes R; Botana, Luis M

    2015-06-15

    Ciguatera is a human global disease caused by the consumption of contaminated fish that have accumulated ciguatoxins (CTXs), sodium channel activator toxins. Symptoms of ciguatera include neurological alterations such as paraesthesiae, dysaesthesiae, depression, and heightened nociperception, among others. An important issue to understand these long-term neurological alterations is to establish the role that changes in activity produced by CTX 3C represent to neurons. Here, the effects of synthetic ciguatoxin CTX 3C on membrane potential, spontaneous spiking, and properties of synaptic transmission in cultured cortical neurons of 11-18 days in vitro (DIV) were evaluated using electrophysiological approaches. CTX 3C induced a large depolarization that decreased neuronal firing and caused a rapid inward tonic current that was primarily GABAergic. Moreover, the toxin enhanced the amplitude of miniature postsynaptic inhibitory currents (mIPSCs), whereas it decreased the amplitude of miniature postsynaptic excitatory currents (mEPSCs). The frequency of mIPSCs increased, whereas the frequency of mEPSCs remained unaltered. We describe, for the first time, that a rapid membrane depolarization caused by CTX 3C in cortical neurons activates mechanisms that tend to suppress electrical activity by shifting the balance between excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission toward inhibition. Indeed, these results suggest that the acute effects of CTX on synaptic transmission could underlie some of the neurological symptoms caused by ciguatera in humans.

  16. Enhancing excitability of dopamine neurons promotes motivational behaviour through increased action initiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boekhoudt, Linde; Wijbrans, Ellen C; Man, Jodie H K; Luijendijk, Mieneke C M; de Jong, Johannes W; van der Plasse, Geoffrey; Vanderschuren, Louk J M J; Adan, Roger A H

    2018-01-01

    Motivational deficits are a key symptom in multiple psychiatric disorders, including major depressive disorder, schizophrenia and addiction. A likely neural substrate for these motivational deficits is the brain dopamine (DA) system. In particular, DA signalling in the nucleus accumbens, which originates from DA neurons in the ventral tegmental area (VTA), has been identified as a crucial substrate for effort-related and activational aspects of motivation. Unravelling how VTA DA neuronal activity relates to motivational behaviours is required to understand how motivational deficits in psychiatry can be specifically targeted. In this study, we therefore used designer receptors exclusively activated by designer drugs (DREADD) in TH:Cre rats, in order to determine the effects of chemogenetic DA neuron activation on different aspects of motivational behaviour. We found that chemogenetic activation of DA neurons in the VTA, but not substantia nigra, significantly increased responding for sucrose under a progressive ratio schedule of reinforcement. More specifically, high effort exertion was characterized by increased initiations of reward-seeking actions. This effect was dependent on effort requirements and instrumental contingencies, but was not affected by sucrose pre-feeding. Together, these findings indicate that VTA DA neuronal activation drives motivational behaviour by facilitating action initiation. With this study, we show that enhancing excitability of VTA DA neurons is a viable strategy to improve motivational behaviour. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. and ECNP. All rights reserved.

  17. Transcriptional regulation of gene expression clusters in motor neurons following spinal cord injury

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    Westerdahl Ann-Charlotte

    2010-06-01

    , the manipulation of which potentially could be used to alter the transcriptional response to prevent the motor neurons from entering a state of hyper-excitability.

  18. Transcriptional regulation of gene expression clusters in motor neurons following spinal cord injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryge, Jesper; Winther, Ole; Wienecke, Jacob; Sandelin, Albin; Westerdahl, Ann-Charlotte; Hultborn, Hans; Kiehn, Ole

    2010-06-09

    used to alter the transcriptional response to prevent the motor neurons from entering a state of hyper-excitability.

  19. Cell-Specific Cholinergic Modulation of Excitability of Layer 5B Principal Neurons in Mouse Auditory Cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joshi, Ankur; Kalappa, Bopanna I.; Anderson, Charles T.

    2016-01-01

    The neuromodulator acetylcholine (ACh) is crucial for several cognitive functions, such as perception, attention, and learning and memory. Whereas, in most cases, the cellular circuits or the specific neurons via which ACh exerts its cognitive effects remain unknown, it is known that auditory cortex (AC) neurons projecting from layer 5B (L5B) to the inferior colliculus, corticocollicular neurons, are required for cholinergic-mediated relearning of sound localization after occlusion of one ear. Therefore, elucidation of the effects of ACh on the excitability of corticocollicular neurons will bridge the cell-specific and cognitive properties of ACh. Because AC L5B contains another class of neurons that project to the contralateral cortex, corticocallosal neurons, to identify the cell-specific mechanisms that enable corticocollicular neurons to participate in sound localization relearning, we investigated the effects of ACh release on both L5B corticocallosal and corticocollicular neurons. Using in vitro electrophysiology and optogenetics in mouse brain slices, we found that ACh generated nicotinic ACh receptor (nAChR)-mediated depolarizing potentials and muscarinic ACh receptor (mAChR)-mediated hyperpolarizing potentials in AC L5B corticocallosal neurons. In corticocollicular neurons, ACh release also generated nAChR-mediated depolarizing potentials. However, in contrast to the mAChR-mediated hyperpolarizing potentials in corticocallosal neurons, ACh generated prolonged mAChR-mediated depolarizing potentials in corticocollicular neurons. These prolonged depolarizing potentials generated persistent firing in corticocollicular neurons, whereas corticocallosal neurons lacking mAChR-mediated depolarizing potentials did not show persistent firing. We propose that ACh-mediated persistent firing in corticocollicular neurons may represent a critical mechanism required for learning-induced plasticity in AC. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Acetylcholine (ACh) is crucial for cognitive

  20. Upregulation of T-type Ca2+ channels in long-term diabetes determines increased excitability of a specific type of capsaicin-insensitive DRG neurons.

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    Duzhyy, Dmytro E; Viatchenko-Karpinski, Viacheslav Y; Khomula, Eugen V; Voitenko, Nana V; Belan, Pavel V

    2015-05-20

    Previous studies have shown that increased excitability of capsaicin-sensitive DRG neurons and thermal hyperalgesia in rats with short-term (2-4 weeks) streptozotocin-induced diabetes is mediated by upregulation of T-type Ca(2+) current. In longer-term diabetes (after the 8th week) thermal hyperalgesia is changed to hypoalgesia that is accompanied by downregulation of T-type current in capsaicin-sensitive small-sized nociceptors. At the same time pain symptoms of diabetic neuropathy other than thermal persist in STZ-diabetic animals and patients during progression of diabetes into later stages suggesting that other types of DRG neurons may be sensitized and contribute to pain. In this study, we examined functional expression of T-type Ca(2+) channels in capsaicin-insensitive DRG neurons and excitability of these neurons in longer-term diabetic rats and in thermally hypoalgesic diabetic rats. Here we have demonstrated that in STZ-diabetes T-type current was upregulated in capsaicin-insensitive low-pH-sensitive small-sized nociceptive DRG neurons of longer-term diabetic rats and thermally hypoalgesic diabetic rats. This upregulation was not accompanied by significant changes in biophysical properties of T-type channels suggesting that a density of functionally active channels was increased. Sensitivity of T-type current to amiloride (1 mM) and low concentration of Ni(2+) (50 μM) implicates prevalence of Cav3.2 subtype of T-type channels in the capsaicin-insensitive low-pH-sensitive neurons of both naïve and diabetic rats. The upregulation of T-type channels resulted in the increased neuronal excitability of these nociceptive neurons revealed by a lower threshold for action potential initiation, prominent afterdepolarizing potentials and burst firing. Sodium current was not significantly changed in these neurons during long-term diabetes and could not contribute to the diabetes-induced increase of neuronal excitability. Capsaicin-insensitive low-pH-sensitive type

  1. Alterations in Neuronal Activity in Basal Ganglia-Thalamocortical Circuits in the Parkinsonian State

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    Adriana eGalvan

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available In patients with Parkinson’s disease and in animal models of this disorder, neurons in the basal ganglia and related regions in thalamus and cortex show changes that can be recorded by using electrophysiologic single-cell recording techniques, including altered firing rates and patterns, pathologic oscillatory activity and increased inter-neuronal synchronization. In addition, changes in synaptic potentials or in the joint spiking activities of populations of neurons can be monitored as alterations in local field potentials, electroencephalograms or electrocorticograms. Most of the mentioned electrophysiologic changes are probably related to the degeneration of diencephalic dopaminergic neurons, leading to dopamine loss in the striatum and other basal ganglia nuclei, although degeneration of non-dopaminergic cell groups may also have a role. The altered electrical activity of the basal ganglia and associated nuclei may contribute to some of the motor signs of the disease. We here review the current knowledge of the electrophysiologic changes at the single cell level, the level of local populations of neural elements, and the level of the entire basal ganglia-thalamocortical network in parkinsonism, and discuss the possible use of this information to optimize treatment approaches to Parkinson’s disease, such as deep brain stimulation therapy.

  2. Alterations in neuronal activity in basal ganglia-thalamocortical circuits in the parkinsonian state

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galvan, Adriana; Devergnas, Annaelle; Wichmann, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    In patients with Parkinson’s disease and in animal models of this disorder, neurons in the basal ganglia and related regions in thalamus and cortex show changes that can be recorded by using electrophysiologic single-cell recording techniques, including altered firing rates and patterns, pathologic oscillatory activity and increased inter-neuronal synchronization. In addition, changes in synaptic potentials or in the joint spiking activities of populations of neurons can be monitored as alterations in local field potentials (LFPs), electroencephalograms (EEGs) or electrocorticograms (ECoGs). Most of the mentioned electrophysiologic changes are probably related to the degeneration of diencephalic dopaminergic neurons, leading to dopamine loss in the striatum and other basal ganglia nuclei, although degeneration of non-dopaminergic cell groups may also have a role. The altered electrical activity of the basal ganglia and associated nuclei may contribute to some of the motor signs of the disease. We here review the current knowledge of the electrophysiologic changes at the single cell level, the level of local populations of neural elements, and the level of the entire basal ganglia-thalamocortical network in parkinsonism, and discuss the possible use of this information to optimize treatment approaches to Parkinson’s disease, such as deep brain stimulation (DBS) therapy. PMID:25698937

  3. Ventral medullary neurones excited from the hypothalamic and mid-brain defence areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hilton, S M; Smith, P R

    1984-07-01

    In cats anaesthetised with chloralose, the ventral medulla was explored in and around the strip previously identified as the location of the efferent pathway from the hypothalamic and mid-brain defence areas to the spinal cord, in a search for neurones excited by electrical stimulation of the defence areas. Such units were found mostly in the caudal part of this strip, at a depth of not more than 500 microns from the surface. Nearly all were located in the ventral part of nucleus paragigantocellularis lateralis (PGL) at the level of the rostral pole of the inferior olive. There was evidence of temporal and spatial facilitation, indicating a convergent excitatory input from the defence areas onto neurones in PGL. This is consistent with earlier evidence of a synaptic relay in the efferent pathway at this site. When the pathway is blocked at this site, arterial blood pressure falls profoundly, so activity in these neurones may be essential for the normal level of sympathetic nerve activity.

  4. Computational modeling reveals dendritic origins of GABA(A-mediated excitation in CA1 pyramidal neurons.

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    Naomi Lewin

    Full Text Available GABA is the key inhibitory neurotransmitter in the adult central nervous system, but in some circumstances can lead to a paradoxical excitation that has been causally implicated in diverse pathologies from endocrine stress responses to diseases of excitability including neuropathic pain and temporal lobe epilepsy. We undertook a computational modeling approach to determine plausible ionic mechanisms of GABA(A-dependent excitation in isolated post-synaptic CA1 hippocampal neurons because it may constitute a trigger for pathological synchronous epileptiform discharge. In particular, the interplay intracellular chloride accumulation via the GABA(A receptor and extracellular potassium accumulation via the K/Cl co-transporter KCC2 in promoting GABA(A-mediated excitation is complex. Experimentally it is difficult to determine the ionic mechanisms of depolarizing current since potassium transients are challenging to isolate pharmacologically and much GABA signaling occurs in small, difficult to measure, dendritic compartments. To address this problem and determine plausible ionic mechanisms of GABA(A-mediated excitation, we built a detailed biophysically realistic model of the CA1 pyramidal neuron that includes processes critical for ion homeostasis. Our results suggest that in dendritic compartments, but not in the somatic compartments, chloride buildup is sufficient to cause dramatic depolarization of the GABA(A reversal potential and dominating bicarbonate currents that provide a substantial current source to drive whole-cell depolarization. The model simulations predict that extracellular K(+ transients can augment GABA(A-mediated excitation, but not cause it. Our model also suggests the potential for GABA(A-mediated excitation to promote network synchrony depending on interneuron synapse location - excitatory positive-feedback can occur when interneurons synapse onto distal dendritic compartments, while interneurons projecting to the perisomatic

  5. SELF-EXCITED WAVE PROCESSES IN CHAINS OF UNIDIRECTIONALLY COUPLED IMPULSE NEURONS

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    S. D. Glyzin

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The article is devoted to the mathematical modeling of neural activity. We propose new classes of singularly perturbed differential-difference equations with delay of Volterra type. With these systems, the models as a single neuron or neural networks are described. We study attractors of ring systems of unidirectionally coupled impulse neurons in the case where the number of links in the system increases indefinitely. In order to study periodic solutions of travelling wave type of this system, some special tricks are used which reduce the existence and stability problems for cycles to the investigation of auxiliary system with impulse actions. Using this approach, we establish that the number of stable self-excited waves simultaneously existing in the chain increases unboundedly as the number of links of the chain increases, that is, the well-known buffer phenomenon occurs.

  6. Ablation of NMDA receptors enhances the excitability of hippocampal CA3 neurons.

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    Fumiaki Fukushima

    Full Text Available Synchronized discharges in the hippocampal CA3 recurrent network are supposed to underlie network oscillations, memory formation and seizure generation. In the hippocampal CA3 network, NMDA receptors are abundant at the recurrent synapses but scarce at the mossy fiber synapses. We generated mutant mice in which NMDA receptors were abolished in hippocampal CA3 pyramidal neurons by postnatal day 14. The histological and cytological organizations of the hippocampal CA3 region were indistinguishable between control and mutant mice. We found that mutant mice lacking NMDA receptors selectively in CA3 pyramidal neurons became more susceptible to kainate-induced seizures. Consistently, mutant mice showed characteristic large EEG spikes associated with multiple unit activities (MUA, suggesting enhanced synchronous firing of CA3 neurons. The electrophysiological balance between fast excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission was comparable between control and mutant pyramidal neurons in the hippocampal CA3 region, while the NMDA receptor-slow AHP coupling was diminished in the mutant neurons. In the adult brain, inducible ablation of NMDA receptors in the hippocampal CA3 region by the viral expression vector for Cre recombinase also induced similar large EEG spikes. Furthermore, pharmacological blockade of CA3 NMDA receptors enhanced the susceptibility to kainate-induced seizures. These results raise an intriguing possibility that hippocampal CA3 NMDA receptors may suppress the excitability of the recurrent network as a whole in vivo by restricting synchronous firing of CA3 neurons.

  7. Angiotensin II potentiates adrenergic and muscarinic modulation of guinea pig intracardiac neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Girasole, Allison E; Palmer, Christopher P; Corrado, Samantha L; Marie Southerland, E; Ardell, Jeffrey L; Hardwick, Jean C

    2011-11-01

    The intrinsic cardiac plexus represents a major peripheral integration site for neuronal, hormonal, and locally produced neuromodulators controlling efferent neuronal output to the heart. This study examined the interdependence of norepinephrine, muscarinic agonists, and ANG II, to modulate intrinsic cardiac neuronal activity. Intracellular voltage recordings from whole-mount preparations of the guinea pig cardiac plexus were used to determine changes in active and passive electrical properties of individual intrinsic cardiac neurons. Application of either adrenergic or muscarinic agonists induced changes in neuronal resting membrane potentials, decreased afterhyperpolarization duration of single action potentials, and increased neuronal excitability. Adrenergic responses were inhibited by removal of extracellular calcium ions, while muscarinic responses were inhibited by application of TEA. The adrenergic responses were heterogeneous, responding to a variety of receptor-specific agonists (phenylephrine, clonidine, dobutamine, and terbutaline), although α-receptor agonists produced the most frequent responses. Application of ANG II alone produced a significant increase in excitability, while application of ANG II in combination with either adrenergic or muscarinic agonists produced a much larger potentiation of excitability. The ANG II-induced modulation of firing was blocked by the angiotensin type 2 (AT(2)) receptor inhibitor PD 123319 and was mimicked by the AT(2) receptor agonist CGP-42112A. AT(1) receptor blockade with telmasartin did not alter neuronal responses to ANG II. These data demonstrate that ANG II potentiates both muscarinically and adrenergically mediated activation of intrinsic cardiac neurons, doing so primarily via AT(2) receptor-dependent mechanisms. These neurohumoral interactions may be fundamental to regulation of neuronal excitability within the intrinsic cardiac nervous system.

  8. Characterization of altered intrinsic excitability in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells of the Aβ-overproducing PDAPP mouse☆

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    Kerrigan, T.L.; Brown, J.T.; Randall, A.D.

    2014-01-01

    Transgenic mice that accumulate Aβ peptides in the CNS are commonly used to interrogate functional consequences of Alzheimer's disease-associated amyloidopathy. In addition to changes to synaptic function, there is also growing evidence that changes to intrinsic excitability of neurones can arise in these models of amyloidopathy. Furthermore, some of these alterations to intrinsic properties may occur relatively early within the age-related progression of experimental amyloidopathy. Here we report a detailed comparison between the intrinsic excitability properties of hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurones in wild-type (WT) and PDAPP mice. The latter is a well-established model of Aβ accumulation which expresses human APP harbouring the Indiana (V717F) mutation. At the age employed in this study (9–10 months) CNS Abeta was elevated in PDAPP mice but significant plaque pathology was absent. PDAPP mice exhibited no differences in subthreshold intrinsic properties including resting potential, input resistance, membrane time constant and sag. When CA1 cells of PDAPP mice were given depolarizing stimuli of various amplitudes they initially fired at a higher frequency than WT cells. Commensurate with this, PDAPP cells exhibited a larger fast afterdepolarizing potential. PDAPP mice had narrower spikes but action potential threshold, rate of rise and peak were not different. Thus not all changes seen in our previous studies of amyloidopathy models were present in PDAPP mice; however, narrower spikes, larger ADPs and the propensity to fire at higher frequencies were consistent with our prior work and thus may represent robust, cross-model, indices of amyloidopathy. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled ‘Neurodevelopment Disorder’. PMID:24055500

  9. Impairments in Motor Neurons, Interneurons and Astrocytes Contribute to Hyperexcitability in ALS: Underlying Mechanisms and Paths to Therapy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Do-Ha, Dzung; Buskila, Yossi; Ooi, Lezanne

    2018-02-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal neurodegenerative disease characterised by the loss of motor neurons leading to progressive paralysis and death. Using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) and nerve excitability tests, several clinical studies have identified that cortical and peripheral hyperexcitability are among the earliest pathologies observed in ALS patients. The changes in the electrophysiological properties of motor neurons have been identified in both sporadic and familial ALS patients, despite the diverse etiology of the disease. The mechanisms behind the change in neuronal signalling are not well understood, though current findings implicate intrinsic changes in motor neurons and dysfunction of cells critical in regulating motor neuronal excitability, such as astrocytes and interneurons. Alterations in ion channel expression and/or function in motor neurons has been associated with changes in cortical and peripheral nerve excitability. In addition to these intrinsic changes in motor neurons, inhibitory signalling through GABAergic interneurons is also impaired in ALS, likely contributing to increased neuronal excitability. Astrocytes have also recently been implicated in increasing neuronal excitability in ALS by failing to adequately regulate glutamate levels and extracellular K + concentration at the synaptic cleft. As hyperexcitability is a common and early feature of ALS, it offers a therapeutic and diagnostic target. Thus, understanding the underlying pathways and mechanisms leading to hyperexcitability in ALS offers crucial insight for future development of ALS treatments.

  10. Intracellular Na(+) and metabolic modulation of Na/K pump and excitability in the rat suprachiasmatic nucleus neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yi-Chi; Yang, Jyh-Jeen; Huang, Rong-Chi

    2012-10-01

    Na/K pump activity and metabolic rate are both higher during the day in the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) that houses the circadian clock. Here we investigated the role of intracellular Na(+) and energy metabolism in regulating Na/K pump activity and neuronal excitability. Removal of extracellular K(+) to block the Na/K pump excited SCN neurons to fire at higher rates and return to normal K(+) to reactivate the pump produced rebound hyperpolarization to inhibit firing. In the presence of tetrodotoxin to block the action potentials, both zero K(+)-induced depolarization and rebound hyperpolarization were blocked by the cardiac glycoside strophanthidin. Ratiometric Na(+) imaging with a Na(+)-sensitive fluorescent dye indicated saturating accumulation of intracellular Na(+) in response to pump blockade with zero K(+). The Na(+) ionophore monensin also induced Na(+) loading and hyperpolarized the membrane potential, with the hyperpolarizing effect of monensin abolished in zero Na(+) or by pump blockade. Conversely, Na(+) depletion with Na(+)-free pipette solution depolarized membrane potential but retained residual Na/K pump activity. Cyanide inhibition of oxidative phosphorylation blocked the Na/K pump to depolarize resting potential and increase spontaneous firing in most cells, and to raise intracellular Na(+) levels in all cells. Nonetheless, the Na/K pump was incompletely blocked by cyanide but completely blocked by iodoacetate to inhibit glycolysis, indicating the involvement of both oxidative phosphorylation and glycolysis in fueling the Na/K pump. Together, the results indicate the importance of intracellular Na(+) and energy metabolism in regulating Na/K pump activity as well as neuronal excitability in the SCN neurons.

  11. Scanning Ultrasound (SUS Causes No Changes to Neuronal Excitability and Prevents Age-Related Reductions in Hippocampal CA1 Dendritic Structure in Wild-Type Mice.

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    Robert John Hatch

    Full Text Available Scanning ultrasound (SUS is a noninvasive approach that has recently been shown to ameliorate histopathological changes and restore memory functions in an Alzheimer's disease mouse model. Although no overt neuronal damage was reported, the short- and long-term effects of SUS on neuronal excitability and dendritic tree morphology had not been investigated. To address this, we performed patch-clamp recordings from hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons in wild-type mice 2 and 24 hours after a single SUS treatment, and one week and 3 months after six weekly SUS treatments, including sham treatments as controls. In both treatment regimes, no changes in CA1 neuronal excitability were observed in SUS-treated neurons when compared to sham-treated neurons at any time-point. For the multiple treatment groups, we also determined the dendritic morphology and spine densities of the neurons from which we had recorded. The apical trees of sham-treated neurons were reduced at the 3 month time-point when compared to one week; however, surprisingly, no longitudinal change was detected in the apical dendritic trees of SUS-treated neurons. In contrast, the length and complexity of the basal dendritic trees were not affected by SUS treatment at either time-point. The apical dendritic spine densities were reduced, independent of the treatment group, at 3 months compared to one week. Collectively, these data suggest that ultrasound can be employed to prevent an age-associated loss of dendritic structure without impairing neuronal excitability.

  12. The Effects of Two Different Stretching Programs on Balance Control and Motor Neuron Excitability

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    Kaya, Fatih; Biçer, Bilal; Yüktasir, Bekir; Willems, Mark E. T.; Yildiz, Nebil

    2018-01-01

    We examined the effects of training (4d/wk for 6 wks) with static stretching (SS) or contract-relax proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation (PNF) on static balance time and motor neuron excitability. Static balance time, H[subscript max]/M[subscript max] ratios and H-reflex recovery curves (HRRC) were measured in 28 healthy subjects (SS: n = 10,…

  13. Memory Deficits Are Associated with Impaired Ability to Modulate Neuronal Excitability in Middle-Aged Mice

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    Kaczorowski, Catherine C.; Disterhoft, John F.

    2009-01-01

    Normal aging disrupts hippocampal neuroplasticity and learning and memory. Aging deficits were exposed in a subset (30%) of middle-aged mice that performed below criterion on a hippocampal-dependent contextual fear conditioning task. Basal neuronal excitability was comparable in middle-aged and young mice, but learning-related modulation of the…

  14. Low concentrations of the solvent dimethyl sulphoxide alter intrinsic excitability properties of cortical and hippocampal pyramidal cells.

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    Francesco Tamagnini

    Full Text Available Dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO is a widely used solvent in biology. It has many applications perhaps the most common of which is in aiding the preparation of drug solutions from hydrophobic chemical entities. Recent studies have suggested that this molecule may be able to induce apoptosis in neural tissues urging caution regarding its introduction into humans, for example as part of stem cell transplants. Here we have used in vitro electrophysiological methods applied to murine brain slices to examine whether a few hours treatment with 0.05% DMSO (a concentration regarded by many as innocuous alters intrinsic excitability properties of neurones. We investigated pyramidal neurones in two distinct brain regions, namely area CA1 of the hippocampus and layer 2 of perirhinal cortex. In the former there was no effect on resting potential but input resistance was decreased by DMSO pre-treatment. In line with this action potential count for any level of depolarizing current stimulus was reduced by ∼25% following DMSO treatment. Ih-mediated "sag" was also increased in CA1 pyramids and action potential waveform analysis demonstrated that DMSO treatment moved action potential threshold towards resting potential. In perirhinal cortex a decreased action potential output for various depolarizing current stimuli was also seen. In these cells action potential threshold was unaltered by DMSO but a significant increase in action potential width was apparent. These data indicate that pre-treatment with this widely employed solvent can elicit multifaceted neurophysiological changes in mammalian neurones at concentrations below those frequently encountered in the published literature.

  15. Corazonin neurons function in sexually dimorphic circuitry that shape behavioral responses to stress in Drosophila.

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    Yan Zhao

    Full Text Available All organisms are confronted with dynamic environmental changes that challenge homeostasis, which is the operational definition of stress. Stress produces adaptive behavioral and physiological responses, which, in the Metazoa, are mediated through the actions of various hormones. Based on its associated phenotypes and its expression profiles, a candidate stress hormone in Drosophila is the corazonin neuropeptide. We evaluated the potential roles of corazonin in mediating stress-related changes in target behaviors and physiologies through genetic alteration of corazonin neuronal excitability. Ablation of corazonin neurons confers resistance to metabolic, osmotic, and oxidative stress, as measured by survival. Silencing and activation of corazonin neurons lead to differential lifespan under stress, and these effects showed a strong dependence on sex. Additionally, altered corazonin neuron physiology leads to fundamental differences in locomotor activity, and these effects were also sex-dependent. The dynamics of altered locomotor behavior accompanying stress was likewise altered in flies with altered corazonin neuronal function. We report that corazonin transcript expression is altered under starvation and osmotic stress, and that triglyceride and dopamine levels are equally impacted in corazonin neuronal alterations and these phenotypes similarly show significant sexual dimorphisms. Notably, these sexual dimorphisms map to corazonin neurons. These results underscore the importance of central peptidergic processing within the context of stress and place corazonin signaling as a critical feature of neuroendocrine events that shape stress responses and may underlie the inherent sexual dimorphic differences in stress responses.

  16. System characterization of neuronal excitability in the hippocampus and its relevance to observed dynamics of spontaneous seizure-like transitions

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    Zalay, Osbert C.; Serletis, Demitre; Carlen, Peter L.; Bardakjian, Berj L.

    2010-06-01

    Most forms of epilepsy are marked by seizure episodes that arise spontaneously. The low-magnesium/high-potassium (low-Mg2+/high-K+) experimental model of epilepsy is an acute model that produces spontaneous, recurring seizure-like events (SLEs). To elucidate the nature of spontaneous seizure transitions and their relationship to neuronal excitability, whole-cell recordings from the intact hippocampus were undertaken in vitro, and the response of hippocampal CA3 neurons to Gaussian white noise injection was obtained before and after treatment with various concentrations of low-Mg2+/high-K+ solution. A second-order Volterra kernel model was estimated for each of the input-output response pairs. The spectral energy of the responses was also computed, providing a quantitative measure of neuronal excitability. Changes in duration and amplitude of the first-order kernel correlated positively with the spectral energy increase following treatment with low-Mg2+/high-K+ solution, suggesting that variations in neuronal excitability are coded by the system kernels, in part by differences to the profile of the first-order kernel. In particular, kernel duration was more sensitive than amplitude to changes in spectral energy, and correlated more strongly with kernel area. An oscillator network model of the hippocampal CA3 was constructed to investigate the relationship of kernel duration to network excitability, and the model was able to generate spontaneous, recurrent SLEs by increasing the duration of a mode function analogous to the first-order kernel. Results from the model indicated that disruption to the dynamic balance of feedback was responsible for seizure-like transitions and the observed intermittency of SLEs. A physiological candidate for feedback imbalance consistent with the network model is the destabilizing interaction of extracellular potassium and paroxysmal neuronal activation. Altogether, these results (1) validate a mathematical model for epileptiform

  17. Secondhand tobacco smoke exposure differentially alters nucleus tractus solitarius neurons at two different ages in developing non-human primates

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sekizawa, Shin-ichi; Joad, Jesse P.; Pinkerton, Kent E.; Bonham, Ann C.

    2010-01-01

    Exposing children to secondhand tobacco smoke (SHS) is associated with increased risk for asthma, bronchiolitis and SIDS. The role for changes in the developing CNS contributing to these problems has not been fully explored. We used rhesus macaques to test the hypothesis that SHS exposure during development triggers neuroplastic changes in the nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS), where lung sensory information related to changes in airway and lung function is first integrated. Pregnant monkeys were exposed to filtered air (FA) or SHS for 6 h/day, 5 days/week starting at 50-day gestational age. Mother/infant pairs continued the exposures postnatally to age 3 or 13 months, which may be equivalent to approximately 1 or 4 years of human age, respectively. Whole-cell recordings were made of second-order NTS neurons in transverse brainstem slices. To target the consequences of SHS exposure based on neuronal subgroups, we classified NTS neurons into two phenotypes, rapid-onset spiking (RS) and delayed-onset spiking (DS), and then evaluated intrinsic and synaptic excitabilities in FA-exposed animals. RS neurons showed greater cell excitability especially at age of 3 months while DS neurons received greater amplitudes of excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs). Developmental neuroplasticity such as increases in intrinsic and synaptic excitabilities were detected especially in DS neurons. In 3 month olds, SHS exposure effects were limited to excitatory changes in RS neurons, specifically increases in evoked EPSC amplitudes and increased spiking responses accompanied by shortened action potential width. By 13 months, the continued SHS exposure inhibited DS neuronal activity; decreases in evoked EPSC amplitudes and blunted spiking responses accompanied by prolonged action potential width. The influence of SHS exposure on age-related and phenotype specific changes may be associated with age-specific respiratory problems, for which SHS exposure can increase the risk, such as SIDS

  18. Increased intrinsic excitability of muscle vasoconstrictor preganglionic neurons may contribute to the elevated sympathetic activity in hypertensive rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Briant, Linford J B; Stalbovskiy, Alexey O; Nolan, Matthew F; Champneys, Alan R; Pickering, Anthony E

    2014-12-01

    Hypertension is associated with pathologically increased sympathetic drive to the vasculature. This has been attributed to increased excitatory drive to sympathetic preganglionic neurons (SPN) from brainstem cardiovascular control centers. However, there is also evidence supporting increased intrinsic excitability of SPN. To test this hypothesis, we made whole cell recordings of muscle vasoconstrictor-like (MVClike) SPN in the working-heart brainstem preparation of spontaneously hypertensive (SH) and normotensive Wistar-Kyoto (WKY) rats. The MVClike SPN have a higher spontaneous firing frequency in the SH rat (3.85 ± 0.4 vs. 2.44 ± 0.4 Hz in WKY; P = 0.011) with greater respiratory modulation of their activity. The action potentials of SH SPN had smaller, shorter afterhyperpolarizations (AHPs) and showed diminished transient rectification indicating suppression of an A-type potassium conductance (IA). We developed mathematical models of the SPN to establish if changes in their intrinsic properties in SH rats could account for their altered firing. Reduction of the maximal conductance density of IA by 15-30% changed the excitability and output of the model from the WKY to a SH profile, with increased firing frequency, amplified respiratory modulation, and smaller AHPs. This change in output is predominantly a consequence of altered synaptic integration. Consistent with these in silico predictions, we found that intrathecal 4-aminopyridine (4-AP) increased sympathetic nerve activity, elevated perfusion pressure, and augmented Traube-Hering waves. Our findings indicate that IA acts as a powerful filter on incoming synaptic drive to SPN and that its diminution in the SH rat is potentially sufficient to account for the increased sympathetic output underlying hypertension. Copyright © 2014 the American Physiological Society.

  19. Osmotic Edema Rapidly Increases Neuronal Excitability Through Activation of NMDA Receptor-Dependent Slow Inward Currents in Juvenile and Adult Hippocampus

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    Kelli Lauderdale

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Cellular edema (cell swelling is a principal component of numerous brain disorders including ischemia, cortical spreading depression, hyponatremia, and epilepsy. Cellular edema increases seizure-like activity in vitro and in vivo, largely through nonsynaptic mechanisms attributable to reduction of the extracellular space. However, the types of excitability changes occurring in individual neurons during the acute phase of cell volume increase remain unclear. Using whole-cell patch clamp techniques, we report that one of the first effects of osmotic edema on excitability of CA1 pyramidal cells is the generation of slow inward currents (SICs, which initiate after approximately 1 min. Frequency of SICs increased as osmolarity decreased in a dose-dependent manner. Imaging of real-time volume changes in astrocytes revealed that neuronal SICs occurred while astrocytes were still in the process of swelling. SICs evoked by cell swelling were mainly nonsynaptic in origin and NMDA receptor-dependent. To better understand the relationship between SICs and changes in neuronal excitability, recordings were performed in increasingly physiological conditions. In the absence of any added pharmacological reagents or imposed voltage clamp, osmotic edema induced excitatory postsynaptic potentials and burst firing over the same timecourse as SICs. Like SICs, action potentials were blocked by NMDAR antagonists. Effects were more pronounced in adult (8–20 weeks old compared with juvenile (P15–P21 mice. Together, our results indicate that cell swelling triggered by reduced osmolarity rapidly increases neuronal excitability through activation of NMDA receptors. Our findings have important implications for understanding nonsynaptic mechanisms of epilepsy in relation to cell swelling and reduction of the extracellular space.

  20. C75, a fatty acid synthase inhibitor, modulates AMP-activated protein kinase to alter neuronal energy metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landree, Leslie E; Hanlon, Andrea L; Strong, David W; Rumbaugh, Gavin; Miller, Ian M; Thupari, Jagan N; Connolly, Erin C; Huganir, Richard L; Richardson, Christine; Witters, Lee A; Kuhajda, Francis P; Ronnett, Gabriele V

    2004-01-30

    C75, a synthetic inhibitor of fatty acid synthase (FAS), is hypothesized to alter the metabolism of neurons in the hypothalamus that regulate feeding behavior to contribute to the decreased food intake and profound weight loss seen with C75 treatment. In the present study, we characterize the suitability of primary cultures of cortical neurons for studies designed to investigate the consequences of C75 treatment and the alteration of fatty acid metabolism in neurons. We demonstrate that in primary cortical neurons, C75 inhibits FAS activity and stimulates carnitine palmitoyltransferase-1 (CPT-1), consistent with its effects in peripheral tissues. C75 alters neuronal ATP levels and AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) activity. Neuronal ATP levels are affected in a biphasic manner with C75 treatment, decreasing initially, followed by a prolonged increase above control levels. Cerulenin, a FAS inhibitor, causes a similar biphasic change in ATP levels, although levels do not exceed control. C75 and cerulenin modulate AMPK phosphorylation and activity. TOFA, an inhibitor of acetyl-CoA carboxylase, increases ATP levels, but does not affect AMPK activity. Several downstream pathways are affected by C75 treatment, including glucose metabolism and acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC) phosphorylation. These data demonstrate that C75 modulates the levels of energy intermediates, thus, affecting the energy sensor AMPK. Similar effects in hypothalamic neurons could form the basis for the effects of C75 on feeding behavior.

  1. Novel modulatory effects of neurosteroids and benzodiazepines on excitatory and inhibitory neurons excitability: a multi-electrode array (MEA recording study"

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    Giulia ePuia

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available The balance between glutamate- and GABA-mediated neurotransmission in the brain is fundamental in the nervous system, but it is regulated by the ‘tonic’ release of a variety of endogenous factors. One such important group of molecules are the neurosteroids (NSs which, similarly to benzodiazepines (BDZs, enhance GABAergic neurotransmission. The purpose of our work was to investigate, at in-vivo physiologically relevant concentrations, the effects of NSs and BDZs as GABA modulators on dissociated neocortical neuron networks grown in long-term culture. We used a multi-electrode array (MEA recording technique and a novel analysis that was able to both identify the action potentials of engaged excitatory and inhibitory neurons and to detect drug-induced network up-states (burst. We found that the NSs tetrahydrodeoxycorticosterone (THDOC and allopregnanolone (ALLO applied at low nM concentrations, produced different modulatory effects on the two neuronal clusters. Conversely, at high concentrations (1 µM, both NSs, decreased excitatory and inhibitory neuron cluster excitability; however, even several hours after washout, the excitability of inhibitory neurons continued to be depressed, leading to a network long term depression (LTD. The BDZs clonazepam (CLZ and midazolam (MDZ also decreased the network excitability, but only MDZ caused LTD of inhibitory neuron cluster. To investigate the origin of the LTD after MDZ application, we tested finasteride (FIN, an inhibitor of endogenous NSs synthesis. FIN did not prevent the LTD induced by MDZ, but surprisingly induced it after application of CLZ. The significance and possible mechanisms underlying these LTD effects of NSs and BDZs are discussed. Taken together, our results not only demonstrate that ex-vivo networks show a sensitivity to NSs and BDZs comparable to that expressed in vivo, but also provide a new global in-vitro description that can help in understanding their activity in more complex

  2. Synaptic Circuit Organization of Motor Corticothalamic Neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamawaki, Naoki

    2015-01-01

    Corticothalamic (CT) neurons in layer 6 constitute a large but enigmatic class of cortical projection neurons. How they are integrated into intracortical and thalamo-cortico-thalamic circuits is incompletely understood, especially outside of sensory cortex. Here, we investigated CT circuits in mouse forelimb motor cortex (M1) using multiple circuit-analysis methods. Stimulating and recording from CT, intratelencephalic (IT), and pyramidal tract (PT) projection neurons, we found strong CT↔ CT and CT↔ IT connections; however, CT→IT connections were limited to IT neurons in layer 6, not 5B. There was strikingly little CT↔ PT excitatory connectivity. Disynaptic inhibition systematically accompanied excitation in these pathways, scaling with the amplitude of excitation according to both presynaptic (class-specific) and postsynaptic (cell-by-cell) factors. In particular, CT neurons evoked proportionally more inhibition relative to excitation (I/E ratio) than IT neurons. Furthermore, the amplitude of inhibition was tuned to match the amount of excitation at the level of individual neurons; in the extreme, neurons receiving no excitation received no inhibition either. Extending these studies to dissect the connectivity between cortex and thalamus, we found that M1-CT neurons and thalamocortical neurons in the ventrolateral (VL) nucleus were remarkably unconnected in either direction. Instead, VL axons in the cortex excited both IT and PT neurons, and CT axons in the thalamus excited other thalamic neurons, including those in the posterior nucleus, which additionally received PT excitation. These findings, which contrast in several ways with previous observations in sensory areas, illuminate the basic circuit organization of CT neurons within M1 and between M1 and thalamus. PMID:25653383

  3. Morphology and intrinsic excitability of regenerating sensory and motor neurons grown on a line micropattern.

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    Ouafa Benzina

    Full Text Available Axonal regeneration is one of the greatest challenges in severe injuries of peripheral nerve. To provide the bridge needed for regeneration, biological or synthetic tubular nerve constructs with aligned architecture have been developed. A key point for improving axonal regeneration is assessing the effects of substrate geometry on neuronal behavior. In the present study, we used an extracellular matrix-micropatterned substrate comprising 3 µm wide lines aimed to physically mimic the in vivo longitudinal axonal growth of mice peripheral sensory and motor neurons. Adult sensory neurons or embryonic motoneurons were seeded and processed for morphological and electrical activity analyses after two days in vitro. We show that micropattern-guided sensory neurons grow one or two axons without secondary branching. Motoneurons polarity was kept on micropattern with a long axon and small dendrites. The micro-patterned substrate maintains the growth promoting effects of conditioning injury and demonstrates, for the first time, that neurite initiation and extension could be differentially regulated by conditioning injury among DRG sensory neuron subpopulations. The micro-patterned substrate impacts the excitability of sensory neurons and promotes the apparition of firing action potentials characteristic for a subclass of mechanosensitive neurons. The line pattern is quite relevant for assessing the regenerative and developmental growth of sensory and motoneurons and offers a unique model for the analysis of the impact of geometry on the expression and the activity of mechanosensitive channels in DRG sensory neurons.

  4. Neuronal redox imbalance results in altered energy homeostasis and early postnatal lethality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maity-Kumar, Gandhari; Thal, Dietmar R; Baumann, Bernd; Scharffetter-Kochanek, Karin; Wirth, Thomas

    2015-07-01

    Redox imbalance is believed to contribute to the development and progression of several neurodegenerative disorders. Our aim was to develop an animal model that exhibits neuron-specific oxidative stress in the CNS to study the consequences and eventually find clues regarding the pathomechanisms of oxidative insults in neuronal homeostasis. We therefore generated a novel neuron-specific superoxide dismutase 2 (SOD2)-deficient mouse by deleting exon 3 of the SOD2 gene using CamKIIα promoter-driven Cre expression. These neuron-specific SOD2 knockout (SOD2(nko)) mice, although born at normal frequencies, died at the age of 4 weeks with critical growth retardation, severe energy failure, and several neurologic phenotypes. In addition, SOD2(nko) mice exhibited severe neuronal alterations such as reactive astrogliosis, neuronal cell cycle inhibition, and induction of apoptosis. JNK activation and stabilization of p53, as a result of reactive oxygen species accumulation, are most likely the inducers of neuronal apoptosis in SOD2(nko) mice. It is remarkable that hypothalamic regulation of glucose metabolism was affected, which in turn induced necrotic brain lesions in SOD2(nko) mice. Taken together, our findings suggest that exclusive deficiency of SOD2 in neurons results in an impaired central regulation of energy homeostasis that leads to persistent hypoglycemia, hypoglycemia-related neuropathology, and an early lethality of the mutant mice. © FASEB.

  5. Intrinsic excitability changes induced by acute treatment of hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons with exogenous amyloid β peptide

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scullion, Sarah; Brown, Jon T.; Randall, Andrew D.

    2015-01-01

    ABSTRACT Accumulation of beta‐amyloid (Aβ) peptides in the human brain is a canonical pathological hallmark of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Recent work in Aβ‐overexpressing transgenic mice indicates that increased brain Aβ levels can be associated with aberrant epileptiform activity. In line with this, such mice can also exhibit altered intrinsic excitability (IE) of cortical and hippocampal neurons: these observations may relate to the increased prevalence of seizures in AD patients. In this study, we examined what changes in IE are produced in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells after 2–5 h treatment with an oligomeric preparation of synthetic human Aβ 1–42 peptide. Whole cell current clamp recordings were compared between Aβ‐(500 nM) and vehicle‐(DMSO 0.05%) treated hippocampal slices obtained from mice. The soluble Aβ treatment did not produce alterations in sub‐threshold intrinsic properties, including membrane potential, input resistance, and hyperpolarization activated “sag”. Similarly, no changes were noted in the firing profile evoked by 500 ms square current supra‐threshold stimuli. However, Aβ 500 nM treatment resulted in the hyperpolarization of the action potential (AP) threshold. In addition, treatment with Aβ at 500 nM depressed the after‐hyperpolarization that followed both a single AP or 50 Hz trains of a number of APs between 5 and 25. These data suggest that acute exposure to soluble Aβ oligomers affects IE properties of CA1 pyramidal neurons differently from outcomes seen in transgenic models of amyloidopathy. However, in both chronic and acute models, the IE changes are toward hyperexcitability, reinforcing the idea that amyloidopathy and increased incidence in seizures might be causally related in AD patients. © 2014 The Authors Hippocampus Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:25515596

  6. PCB 136 Atropselectively Alters Morphometric and Functional Parameters of Neuronal Connectivity in Cultured Rat Hippocampal Neurons via Ryanodine Receptor-Dependent Mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Dongren; Kania-Korwel, Izabela; Ghogha, Atefeh; Chen, Hao; Stamou, Marianna; Bose, Diptiman D.; Pessah, Isaac N.; Lehmler, Hans-Joachim; Lein, Pamela J.

    2014-01-01

    We recently demonstrated that polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) congeners with multiple ortho chlorine substitutions sensitize ryanodine receptors (RyRs), and this activity promotes Ca2+-dependent dendritic growth in cultured neurons. Many ortho-substituted congeners display axial chirality, and we previously reported that the chiral congener PCB 136 (2,2′,3,3′,6,6′-hexachlorobiphenyl) atropselectively sensitizes RyRs. Here, we test the hypothesis that PCB 136 atropisomers differentially alter dendritic growth and other parameters of neuronal connectivity influenced by RyR activity. (−)-PCB 136, which potently sensitizes RyRs, enhances dendritic growth in primary cultures of rat hippocampal neurons, whereas (+)-PCB 136, which lacks RyR activity, has no effect on dendritic growth. The dendrite-promoting activity of (−)-PCB 136 is observed at concentrations ranging from 0.1 to 100nM and is blocked by pharmacologic RyR antagonism. Neither atropisomer alters axonal growth or cell viability. Quantification of PCB 136 atropisomers in hippocampal cultures indicates that atropselective effects on dendritic growth are not due to differential partitioning of atropisomers into cultured cells. Imaging of hippocampal neurons loaded with Ca2+-sensitive dye demonstrates that (−)-PCB 136 but not (+)-PCB 136 increases the frequency of spontaneous Ca2+ oscillations. Similarly, (−)-PCB 136 but not (+)-PCB 136 increases the activity of hippocampal neurons plated on microelectrode arrays. These data support the hypothesis that atropselective effects on RyR activity translate into atropselective effects of PCB 136 atropisomers on neuronal connectivity, and suggest that the variable atropisomeric enrichment of chiral PCBs observed in the human population may be a significant determinant of individual susceptibility for adverse neurodevelopmental outcomes following PCB exposure. PMID:24385416

  7. Direct effects of HIV-1 Tat on excitability and survival of primary dorsal root ganglion neurons: possible contribution to HIV-1-associated pain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xianxun Chi

    Full Text Available The vast majority of people living with human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1 have pain syndrome, which has a significant impact on their quality of life. The underlying causes of HIV-1-associated pain are not likely attributable to direct viral infection of the nervous system due to the lack of evidence of neuronal infection by HIV-1. However, HIV-1 proteins are possibly involved as they have been implicated in neuronal damage and death. The current study assesses the direct effects of HIV-1 Tat, one of potent neurotoxic viral proteins released from HIV-1-infected cells, on the excitability and survival of rat primary dorsal root ganglion (DRG neurons. We demonstrated that HIV-1 Tat triggered rapid and sustained enhancement of the excitability of small-diameter rat primary DRG neurons, which was accompanied by marked reductions in the rheobase and resting membrane potential (RMP, and an increase in the resistance at threshold (R(Th. Such Tat-induced DRG hyperexcitability may be a consequence of the inhibition of cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5 activity. Tat rapidly inhibited Cdk5 kinase activity and mRNA production, and roscovitine, a well-known Cdk5 inhibitor, induced a very similar pattern of DRG hyperexcitability. Indeed, pre-application of Tat prevented roscovitine from having additional effects on the RMP and action potentials (APs of DRGs. However, Tat-mediated actions on the rheobase and R(Th were accelerated by roscovitine. These results suggest that Tat-mediated changes in DRG excitability are partly facilitated by Cdk5 inhibition. In addition, Cdk5 is most abundant in DRG neurons and participates in the regulation of pain signaling. We also demonstrated that HIV-1 Tat markedly induced apoptosis of primary DRG neurons after exposure for longer than 48 h. Together, this work indicates that HIV-1 proteins are capable of producing pain signaling through direct actions on excitability and survival of sensory neurons.

  8. Pituitary adenylate cyclase 1 receptor internalization and endosomal signaling mediate the pituitary adenylate cyclase activating polypeptide-induced increase in guinea pig cardiac neuron excitability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merriam, Laura A; Baran, Caitlin N; Girard, Beatrice M; Hardwick, Jean C; May, Victor; Parsons, Rodney L

    2013-03-06

    After G-protein-coupled receptor activation and signaling at the plasma membrane, the receptor complex is often rapidly internalized via endocytic vesicles for trafficking into various intracellular compartments and pathways. The formation of signaling endosomes is recognized as a mechanism that produces sustained intracellular signals that may be distinct from those generated at the cell surface for cellular responses including growth, differentiation, and survival. Pituitary adenylate cyclase activating polypeptide (PACAP; Adcyap1) is a potent neurotransmitter/neurotrophic peptide and mediates its diverse cellular functions in part through internalization of its cognate G-protein-coupled PAC1 receptor (PAC1R; Adcyap1r1). In the present study, we examined whether PAC1R endocytosis participates in the regulation of neuronal excitability. Although PACAP increased excitability in 90% of guinea pig cardiac neurons, pretreatment with Pitstop 2 or dynasore to inhibit clathrin and dynamin I/II, respectively, suppressed the PACAP effect. Subsequent addition of inhibitor after the PACAP-induced increase in excitability developed gradually attenuated excitability with no changes in action potential properties. Likewise, the PACAP-induced increase in excitability was markedly decreased at ambient temperature. Receptor trafficking studies with GFP-PAC1 cell lines demonstrated the efficacy of Pitstop 2, dynasore, and low temperatures at suppressing PAC1R endocytosis. In contrast, brefeldin A pretreatments to disrupt Golgi vesicle trafficking did not blunt the PACAP effect, and PACAP/PAC1R signaling still increased neuronal cAMP production even with endocytic blockade. Our results demonstrate that PACAP/PAC1R complex endocytosis is a key step for the PACAP modulation of cardiac neuron excitability.

  9. Effects of cevimeline on excitability of parasympathetic preganglionic neurons in the superior salivatory nucleus of rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitoh, Yoshihiro; Ueda, Hirotaka; Ichikawa, Hiroyuki; Fujita, Masako; Kobashi, Motoi; Matsuo, Ryuji

    2017-09-01

    The superior salivatory nucleus (SSN) contains parasympathetic preganglionic neurons innervating the submandibular and sublingual salivary glands. Cevimeline, a muscarinic acetylcholine receptor (mAChR) agonist, is a sialogogue that possibly stimulates SSN neurons in addition to the salivary glands themselves because it can cross the blood-brain barrier (BBB). In the present study, we examined immunoreactivities for mAChR subtypes in SSN neurons retrogradely labeled with a fluorescent tracer in neonatal rats. Additionally, we examined the effects of cevimeline in labeled SSN neurons of brainstem slices using a whole-cell patch-clamp technique. Mainly M1 and M3 receptors were detected by immunohistochemical staining, with low-level detection of M4 and M5 receptors and absence of M2 receptors. Most (110 of 129) SSN neurons exhibited excitatory responses to application of cevimeline. In responding neurons, voltage-clamp recordings showed that 84% (101/120) of the neurons exhibited inward currents. In the neurons displaying inward currents, the effects of the mAChR antagonists were examined. A mixture of M1 and M3 receptor antagonists most effectively reduced the peak amplitude of inward currents, suggesting that the excitatory effects of cevimeline on SSN neurons were mainly mediated by M1 and M3 receptors. Current-clamp recordings showed that application of cevimeline induced membrane depolarization (9/9 neurons). These results suggest that most SSN neurons are excited by cevimeline via M1 and M3 muscarinic receptors. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Age-related deficits in synaptic plasticity rescued by activating PKA or PKC in sensory neurons of Aplysia californica

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew T Kempsell

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Brain aging is associated with declines in synaptic function that contribute to memory loss, including reduced postsynaptic response to neurotransmitters and decreased neuronal excitability. To understand how aging affects memory in a simple neural circuit, we studied neuronal proxies of memory for sensitization in mature versus advanced age Aplysia. Glutamate- (L-Glu- evoked excitatory currents were facilitated by the neuromodulator serotonin (5-HT in sensory neurons (SN isolated from mature but not aged animals. Activation of PKA and PKC signaling rescued facilitation of L-Glu currents in aged SN. Similarly, PKA and PKC activators restored increased excitability in aged tail SN. These results suggest that altered synaptic plasticity during aging involves defects in second messenger systems

  11. Stochastic multiresonance in coupled excitable FHN neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Huiyan; Sun, Xiaojuan; Xiao, Jinghua

    2018-04-01

    In this paper, effects of noise on Watts-Strogatz small-world neuronal networks, which are stimulated by a subthreshold signal, have been investigated. With the numerical simulations, it is surprisingly found that there exist several optimal noise intensities at which the subthreshold signal can be detected efficiently. This indicates the occurrence of stochastic multiresonance in the studied neuronal networks. Moreover, it is revealed that the occurrence of stochastic multiresonance has close relationship with the period of subthreshold signal Te and the noise-induced mean period of the neuronal networks T0. In detail, we find that noise could induce the neuronal networks to generate stochastic resonance for M times if Te is not very large and falls into the interval ( M × T 0 , ( M + 1 ) × T 0 ) with M being a positive integer. In real neuronal system, subthreshold signal detection is very meaningful. Thus, the obtained results in this paper could give some important implications on detecting subthreshold signal and propagating neuronal information in neuronal systems.

  12. Opening of pannexin and connexin based-channels increases the excitability of nodose ganglion sensory neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mauricio Antonio Retamal

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Satellite glial cells (SGCs are the main glia in sensory ganglia. They surround neuronal bodies and form a cap that prevents the formation of chemical or electrical synapses between neighboring neurons. SGCs have been suggested to establish bidirectional paracrine communication with sensory neurons. However, the molecular mechanism involved in this cellular communication is unknown. In the central nervous system, astrocytes present connexin43 (Cx43 hemichannels and pannexin1 (Panx1 channels, and their opening allows the release of signal molecules, such as ATP and glutamate. We propose that these channels could play a role in the glia-neuron communication in sensory ganglia. Therefore, we studied the expression and function of Cx43 and Panx1 in rat and mouse nodose-petrosal-jugular complex (NPJc by confocal immunofluorescence, molecular and electrophysiological techniques. Cx43 and Panx1 were detected in SGCs and sensory neurons, respectively. In the rat and mouse, the electrical activity of vagal nerve increased significantly after nodose neurons were exposed to Ca2+/ Mg2+-free solution, a condition that increases the open probability of Cx hemichannels. This response was partially mimicked by a cell-permeable peptide corresponding to the last 10 amino acids of Cx43 (TAT-Cx43CT. Enhanced neuronal activity was reduced by Cx hemichannel, Panx1 channel and P2X7 receptor blockers. Moreover, the role of Panx1 was confirmed in NPJc, because Panx1 knockout mouse showed a reduced increase of neuronal activity induced by Ca2+/Mg2+-free extracellular conditions. Data suggest that Cx hemichannels and Panx channels serve as paracrine communication pathways between SGCs and neurons by modulating the excitability of sensory neurons.

  13. Effects of 4-phenyl butyric acid on high glucose-induced alterations in dorsal root ganglion neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Dilip; Singh, Jitendra Narain; Sharma, Shyam S

    2016-12-02

    Mechanisms and pathways involving in diabetic neuropathy are still not fully understood but can be unified by the process of overproduction of reactive oxygen species (ROS) such as superoxide, endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress, downstream intracellular signaling pathways and their modulation. Susceptibility of dorsal root ganglion (DRG) to internal/external hyperglycemic environment stress contributes to the pathogenesis and progression of diabetic neuropathy. ER stress leads to abnormal ion channel function, gene expression, transcriptional regulation, metabolism and protein folding. 4-phenyl butyric acid (4-PBA) is a potent and selective chemical chaperone; which may inhibit ER stress. It may be hypothesized that 4-PBA could attenuate via channels in DRG in diabetic neuropathy. Effects of 4-PBA were determined by applying different parameters of oxidative stress, cell viability, apoptosis assays and channel expression in cultured DRG neurons. Hyperglycemia-induced apoptosis in the DRG neuron was inhibited by 4-PBA. Cell viability of DRG neurons was not altered by 4-PBA. Oxidative stress was significantly blocked by the 4-PBA. Sodium channel expression was not altered by the 4-PBA. Our data provide evidence that the hyperglycemia-induced alteration may be reduced by the 4-PBA without altering the sodium channel expression. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Maternal Dexamethasone Exposure Alters Synaptic Inputs to Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone Neurons in the Early Postnatal Rat

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    Wei Ling Lim

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Maternal dexamethasone (DEX; a glucocorticoid receptor agonist exposure delays pubertal onset and alters reproductive behaviour in the adult offspring. However, little is known whether maternal DEX exposure affects the offspring’s reproductive function by disrupting the gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH neuronal function in the brain. Therefore, this study determined the exposure of maternal DEX on the GnRH neuronal spine development and synaptic cluster inputs to GnRH neurons using transgenic rats expressing enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP under the control of GnRH promoter. Pregnant females were administered with DEX (0.1mg/kg or vehicle (VEH, water daily during gestation day 13-20. Confocal imaging was used to examine the spine density of EGFP-GnRH neurons by three-dimensional rendering and synaptic cluster inputs to EGFP-GnRH neurons by synapsin I immunohistochemistry on postnatal day 0 (P0 males. The spine morphology and number on GnRH neurons did not change between the P0 males following maternal DEX and VEH treatment. The number of synaptic clusters within the organum vasculosum of the lamina terminalis (OVLT was decreased by maternal DEX exposure in P0 males. Furthermore, the number and levels of synaptic cluster inputs in close apposition with GnRH neurons was decreased following maternal DEX exposure in the OVLT region of P0 males. In addition, the post synaptic marker molecule, post-synaptic density 95 was observed in GnRH neurons following both DEX and VEH treatment. These results suggest that maternal DEX exposure alters neural afferent inputs to GnRH neurons during early postnatal stage, which could lead to reproductive dysfunction during adulthood.

  15. Pharmacological modulation of cortical excitability shifts induced by transcranial direct current stimulation in humans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nitsche, M A; Fricke, K; Henschke, U; Schlitterlau, A; Liebetanz, D; Lang, N; Henning, S; Tergau, F; Paulus, W

    2003-11-15

    Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) of the human motor cortex results in polarity-specific shifts of cortical excitability during and after stimulation. Anodal tDCS enhances and cathodal stimulation reduces excitability. Animal experiments have demonstrated that the effect of anodal tDCS is caused by neuronal depolarisation, while cathodal tDCS hyperpolarises cortical neurones. However, not much is known about the ion channels and receptors involved in these effects. Thus, the impact of the sodium channel blocker carbamazepine, the calcium channel blocker flunarizine and the NMDA receptor antagonist dextromethorphane on tDCS-elicited motor cortical excitability changes of healthy human subjects were tested. tDCS-protocols inducing excitability alterations (1) only during tDCS and (2) eliciting long-lasting after-effects were applied after drug administration. Carbamazepine selectively eliminated the excitability enhancement induced by anodal stimulation during and after tDCS. Flunarizine resulted in similar changes. Antagonising NMDA receptors did not alter current-generated excitability changes during a short stimulation, which elicits no after-effects, but prevented the induction of long-lasting after-effects independent of their direction. These results suggest that, like in other animals, cortical excitability shifts induced during tDCS in humans also depend on membrane polarisation, thus modulating the conductance of sodium and calcium channels. Moreover, they suggest that the after-effects may be NMDA receptor dependent. Since NMDA receptors are involved in neuroplastic changes, the results suggest a possible application of tDCS in the modulation or induction of these processes in a clinical setting. The selective elimination of tDCS-driven excitability enhancements by carbamazepine proposes a role for this drug in focussing the effects of cathodal tDCS, which may have important future clinical applications.

  16. Age-related deficits in synaptic plasticity rescued by activating PKA or PKC in sensory neurons of Aplysia californica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kempsell, Andrew T; Fieber, Lynne A

    2015-01-01

    Brain aging is associated with declines in synaptic function that contribute to memory loss, including reduced postsynaptic response to neurotransmitters and decreased neuronal excitability. To understand how aging affects memory in a simple neural circuit, we studied neuronal proxies of memory for sensitization in mature vs. advanced age Aplysia californica (Aplysia). L-Glutamate- (L-Glu-) evoked excitatory currents were facilitated by the neuromodulator serotonin (5-HT) in sensory neurons (SN) isolated from mature but not aged animals. Activation of protein kinase A (PKA) and protein kinase C (PKC) signaling rescued facilitation of L-Glu currents in aged SN. Similarly, PKA and PKC activators restored increased excitability in aged tail SN. These results suggest that altered synaptic plasticity during aging involves defects in second messenger systems.

  17. Large-conductance calcium-dependent potassium channels prevent dendritic excitability in neocortical pyramidal neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benhassine, Narimane; Berger, Thomas

    2009-03-01

    Large-conductance calcium-dependent potassium channels (BK channels) are homogeneously distributed along the somatodendritic axis of layer 5 pyramidal neurons of the rat somatosensory cortex. The relevance of this conductance for dendritic calcium electrogenesis was studied in acute brain slices using somatodendritic patch clamp recordings and calcium imaging. BK channel activation reduces the occurrence of dendritic calcium spikes. This is reflected in an increased critical frequency of somatic spikes necessary to activate the distal initiation zone. Whilst BK channels repolarise the somatic spike, they dampen it only in the distal dendrite. Their activation reduces dendritic calcium influx via glutamate receptors. Furthermore, they prevent dendritic calcium electrogenesis and subsequent somatic burst discharges. However, the time window for coincident somatic action potential and dendritic input to elicit dendritic calcium events is not influenced by BK channels. Thus, BK channel activation in layer 5 pyramidal neurons affects cellular excitability primarily by establishing a high threshold at the distal action potential initiation zone.

  18. Mitochondrial Alterations by PARKIN in Dopaminergic Neurons Using PARK2 Patient-Specific and PARK2 Knockout Isogenic iPSC Lines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Atossa Shaltouki

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available In this study, we used patient-specific and isogenic PARK2-induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs to show that mutations in PARK2 alter neuronal proliferation. The percentage of TH+ neurons was decreased in Parkinson’s disease (PD patient-derived neurons carrying various mutations in PARK2 compared with an age-matched control subject. This reduction was accompanied by alterations in mitochondrial:cell volume fraction (mitochondrial volume fraction. The same phenotype was confirmed in isogenic PARK2 null lines. The mitochondrial phenotype was also seen in non-midbrain neurons differentiated from the PARK2 null line, as was the functional phenotype of reduced proliferation in culture. Whole genome expression profiling at various stages of differentiation confirmed the mitochondrial phenotype and identified pathways altered by PARK2 dysfunction that include PD-related genes. Our results are consistent with current model of PARK2 function where damaged mitochondria are targeted for degradation via a PARK2/PINK1-mediated mechanism.

  19. Selective alterations of neurons and circuits related to early memory loss in Alzheimer's disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María eLlorens-Martín

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available A progressive loss of episodic memory is a well-known clinical symptom that characterizes Alzheimer’s disease (AD. The beginning of this loss of memory has been associated with the very early, pathological accumulation of tau and neuronal degeneration observed in the entorhinal cortex (EC. Tau-related pathology is thought to then spread progressively to the hippocampal formation and other brain areas as the disease progresses. The major cortical afferent source of the hippocampus and dentate gyrus is the EC through the perforant pathway. At least two main circuits participate in the connection between EC and the hippocampus; one originating in layer II and the other in layer III of the EC giving rise to the classical trisynaptic (ECII→dentate gyrus→CA3→CA1 and monosynaptic (ECIII→CA1 circuits. Thus, the study of the early pathological changes in these circuits is of great interest. In this review, we will discuss mainly the alterations of the granule cell neurons of the dentate gyrus and the atrophy of CA1 pyramidal neurons that occur in AD in relation to the possible differential alterations of these two main circuits.

  20. An FPGA-based silicon neuronal network with selectable excitability silicon neurons

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    Jing eLi

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a digital silicon neuronal network which simulates the nerve system in creatures and has the ability to execute intelligent tasks, such as associative memory. Two essential elements, the mathematical-structure-based digital spiking silicon neuron (DSSN and the transmitter release based silicon synapse, allow the network to show rich dynamic behaviors and are computationally efficient for hardware implementation. We adopt mixed pipeline and parallel structure and shift operations to design a sufficient large and complex network without excessive hardware resource cost. The network with $256$ full-connected neurons is built on a Digilent Atlys board equipped with a Xilinx Spartan-6 LX45 FPGA. Besides, a memory control block and USB control block are designed to accomplish the task of data communication between the network and the host PC. This paper also describes the mechanism of associative memory performed in the silicon neuronal network. The network is capable of retrieving stored patterns if the inputs contain enough information of them. The retrieving probability increases with the similarity between the input and the stored pattern increasing. Synchronization of neurons is observed when the successful stored pattern retrieval occurs.

  1. PIP2 mediates functional coupling and pharmacology of neuronal KCNQ channels

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kim, Robin Y; Pless, Stephan A; Kurata, Harley T

    2017-01-01

    Retigabine (RTG) is a first-in-class antiepileptic drug that suppresses neuronal excitability through the activation of voltage-gated KCNQ2-5 potassium channels. Retigabine binds to the pore-forming domain, causing a hyperpolarizing shift in the voltage dependence of channel activation. To elucid......Retigabine (RTG) is a first-in-class antiepileptic drug that suppresses neuronal excitability through the activation of voltage-gated KCNQ2-5 potassium channels. Retigabine binds to the pore-forming domain, causing a hyperpolarizing shift in the voltage dependence of channel activation....... These findings reveal an important role for PIP2 in coupling retigabine binding to altered VSD function. We identify a polybasic motif in the proximal C terminus of retigabine-sensitive KCNQ channels that contributes to VSD-pore coupling via PIP2, and thereby influences the unique gating effects of retigabine....

  2. Calcium regulation in long-term changes of neuronal excitability in the hippocampal formation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mody, I.

    1985-01-01

    The regulation of calcium (Ca/sup 2 +/) was examined during long-term changes of neuronal excitability in the mammalian CNS. The preparations under investigation included the kindling model of epilepsy, a genetic form of epilepsy and long-term potentiation (LTP) of neuronal activity. The study also includes a discussion of the possible roles of a neuron-specific calcium-binding protein (CaBP). The findings are summarized as follows: (1) CaBP was found to have an unequal distribution in various cortical areas of the rat with higher levels in ventral structures. (2) The decline in CaBP was correlated to the number of evoked afterdischarges (AD's) during kindling-induced epilepsy. (3) Marked changes in CaBP levels were also found in the brains of the epileptic strain of mice (El). The induction of seizures further decreased the levels of CaBP in the El mice, indicating a possible genetic impairment of neuronal Ca/sup 2 +/ homeostasis in the El strain. (4) The levels of total hippocampal Ca/sup 2 +/ and Zn/sup 2 +/ were measured by atomic absorption spectrophotometry in control and commissural-kindled animals. (5) To measure Ca/sup 2 +/-homeostasis, the kinetic analysis of /sup 45/Ca uptake curves was undertaken in the in vitro hippocampus. (6) The kinetic analysis of /sup 45/Ca uptake curves revealed that Ca/sup 2 +/-regulation of the hippocampus is impaired following amygdala- and commissural kindling. (7). A novel form of long-term potentiation (LTP) of neuronal activity in the CA1 region of the hippocampus is described. The findings raise the possibility that the Ca/sup 2 +/ necessary for induction of LTP may be derived from an intraneuronal storage site.

  3. The effects of aromatic amino acid derivatives on the excitability of an identifiable giant neurone of the African giant snail (Achatina fulica Férussac).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takeuchi, H.; Tamura, H.

    1980-01-01

    1 The effects of derivatives of aromatic amino acids on the excitability of an identifiable giant neurone (TAN, tonically autoactive neurone) of the African giant snail (Achatina fulica Férussac) were examined. 2 The following substances had marked inhibitory effects on TAN using bath application: N-beta-phenylpropionyl-L-Tyr and N-beta-phenylpropionyl-L-Trp (critical concentration, 3 x 10(-7) M), N-beta-phenylpropionyl-L-Phe, N-cinnamoyl-DL-Trp and N-phenoxyacetyl-L-Trp (critical concentration, 10(-5) to 3 x 10(-5) M). However, N-beta-phenylpropionyl-D-Tyr and N-beta-phenylpropionyl tyramine had no effect. 3 Microdrop (150 micrometers in diameter) application of N-beta-phenylpropionyl-L-Tyr or N-beta-phenylpropionyl-l-trp containing about 100 pg resulted in marked inhibitory effects on TAN. The effect was observed in Ca2+-free, Mg2+-rich (24 mM) solution. Substitution of Cl- by acetate did not alter the response. This indicates that the two substances act directly on the TAN membrane and not via synaptic influences, and that the inhibition produced by the two substances is not due to the permeability increase of the TAN membrane to Cl-. PMID:7378654

  4. Prepubertal Development of Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone Neuron Activity Is Altered by Sex, Age, and Prenatal Androgen Exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dulka, Eden A; Moenter, Suzanne M

    2017-11-01

    Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) neurons regulate reproduction though pulsatile hormone release. Disruption of GnRH release as measured via luteinizing hormone (LH) pulses occurs in polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), and in young hyperandrogenemic girls. In adult prenatally androgenized (PNA) mice, which exhibit many aspects of PCOS, increased LH is associated with increased GnRH neuron action potential firing. How GnRH neuron activity develops over the prepubertal period and whether this is altered by sex or prenatal androgen treatment are unknown. We hypothesized GnRH neurons are active before puberty and that this activity is sexually differentiated and altered by PNA. Dams were injected with dihydrotestosterone (DHT) on days 16 to 18 post copulation to generate PNA mice. Action potential firing of GFP-identified GnRH neurons in brain slices from 1-, 2-, 3-, and 4-week-old and adult mice was monitored. GnRH neurons were active at all ages tested. In control females, activity increased with age through 3 weeks, then decreased to adult levels. In contrast, activity did not change in PNA females and was reduced at 3 weeks. Activity was higher in control females than males from 2 to 3 weeks. PNA did not affect GnRH neuron firing rate in males at any age. Short-term action potential patterns were also affected by age and PNA treatment. GnRH neurons are thus typically more active during the prepubertal period than adulthood, and PNA reduces prepubertal activity in females. Prepubertal activity may play a role in establishing sexually differentiated neuronal networks upstream of GnRH neurons; androgen-induced changes during this time may contribute to the adult PNA, and possibly PCOS, phenotype. Copyright © 2017 Endocrine Society.

  5. Diabetic polyneuropathy, sensory neurons, nuclear structure and spliceosome alterations: a role for CWC22

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    Masaki Kobayashi

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Unique deficits in the function of adult sensory neurons as part of their early neurodegeneration might account for progressive polyneuropathy during chronic diabetes mellitus. Here, we provide structural and functional evidence for aberrant pre-mRNA splicing in a chronic type 1 model of experimental diabetic polyneuropathy (DPN. Cajal bodies (CBs, unique nuclear substructures involved in RNA splicing, increased in number in diabetic sensory neurons, but their expected colocalization with survival motor neuron (SMN proteins was reduced – a mislocalization described in motor neurons of spinal muscular atrophy. Small nuclear ribonucleoprotein particles (snRNPs, also participants in the spliceosome, had abnormal multiple nuclear foci unassociated with CBs, and their associated snRNAs were reduced. CWC22, a key spliceosome protein, was aberrantly upregulated in diabetic dorsal root ganglia (DRG, and impaired neuronal function. CWC22 attenuated sensory neuron plasticity, with knockdown in vitro enhancing their neurite outgrowth. Further, axonal delivery of CWC22 siRNA unilaterally to locally knock down the aberrant protein in diabetic nerves improved aspects of sensory function in diabetic mice. Collectively, our findings identify subtle but significant alterations in spliceosome structure and function, including dysregulated CBs and CWC22 overexpression, in diabetic sensory neurons that offer new ideas regarding diabetic sensory neurodegeneration in polyneuropathy.

  6. Neuron Morphology Influences Axon Initial Segment Plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gulledge, Allan T; Bravo, Jaime J

    2016-01-01

    In most vertebrate neurons, action potentials are initiated in the axon initial segment (AIS), a specialized region of the axon containing a high density of voltage-gated sodium and potassium channels. It has recently been proposed that neurons use plasticity of AIS length and/or location to regulate their intrinsic excitability. Here we quantify the impact of neuron morphology on AIS plasticity using computational models of simplified and realistic somatodendritic morphologies. In small neurons (e.g., dentate granule neurons), excitability was highest when the AIS was of intermediate length and located adjacent to the soma. Conversely, neurons having larger dendritic trees (e.g., pyramidal neurons) were most excitable when the AIS was longer and/or located away from the soma. For any given somatodendritic morphology, increasing dendritic membrane capacitance and/or conductance favored a longer and more distally located AIS. Overall, changes to AIS length, with corresponding changes in total sodium conductance, were far more effective in regulating neuron excitability than were changes in AIS location, while dendritic capacitance had a larger impact on AIS performance than did dendritic conductance. The somatodendritic influence on AIS performance reflects modest soma-to-AIS voltage attenuation combined with neuron size-dependent changes in AIS input resistance, effective membrane time constant, and isolation from somatodendritic capacitance. We conclude that the impact of AIS plasticity on neuron excitability will depend largely on somatodendritic morphology, and that, in some neurons, a shorter or more distally located AIS may promote, rather than limit, action potential generation.

  7. Synaptic dysfunction and altered excitability in C9ORF72 ALS/FTD.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Starr, Alexander; Sattler, Rita

    2018-02-14

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is characterized by a progressive degeneration of upper and lower motor neurons, resulting in fatal paralysis due to denervation of the muscle. Due to genetic, pathological and symptomatic overlap, ALS is now considered a spectrum disease together with frontotemporal dementia (FTD), the second most common cause of dementia in individuals under the age of 65. Interestingly, in both diseases, there is a large prevalence of RNA binding proteins (RBPs) that are mutated and considered disease-causing, or whose dysfunction contribute to disease pathogenesis. The most common shared genetic mutation in ALS/FTD is a hexanucleuotide repeat expansion within intron 1 of C9ORF72 (C9). Three potentially overlapping, putative toxic mechanisms have been proposed: loss of function due to haploinsufficient expression of the C9ORF72 mRNA, gain of function of the repeat RNA aggregates, or RNA foci, and repeat-associated non-ATG-initiated translation (RAN) of the repeat RNA into toxic dipeptide repeats (DPRs). Regardless of the causative mechanism, disease symptoms are ultimately caused by a failure of neurotransmission in three regions: the brain, the spinal cord, and the neuromuscular junction. Here, we review C9 ALS/FTD-associated synaptic dysfunction and aberrant neuronal excitability in these three key regions, focusing on changes in morphology and synapse formation, excitability, and excitotoxicity in patients, animal models, and in vitro models. We compare these deficits to those seen in other forms of ALS and FTD in search of shared pathways, and discuss the potential targeting of synaptic dysfunctions for therapeutic intervention in ALS and FTD patients. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  8. Low-intensity repetitive magnetic stimulation lowers action potential threshold and increases spike firing in layer 5 pyramidal neurons in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, Alexander D; Hong, Ivan; Boddington, Laura J; Garrett, Andrew R; Etherington, Sarah; Reynolds, John N J; Rodger, Jennifer

    2016-10-29

    Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) has become a popular method of modulating neural plasticity in humans. Clinically, rTMS is delivered at high intensities to modulate neuronal excitability. While the high-intensity magnetic field can be targeted to stimulate specific cortical regions, areas adjacent to the targeted area receive stimulation at a lower intensity and may contribute to the overall plasticity induced by rTMS. We have previously shown that low-intensity rTMS induces molecular and structural plasticity in vivo, but the effects on membrane properties and neural excitability have not been investigated. Here we investigated the acute effect of low-intensity repetitive magnetic stimulation (LI-rMS) on neuronal excitability and potential changes on the passive and active electrophysiological properties of layer 5 pyramidal neurons in vitro. Whole-cell current clamp recordings were made at baseline prior to subthreshold LI-rMS (600 pulses of iTBS, n=9 cells from 7 animals) or sham (n=10 cells from 9 animals), immediately after stimulation, as well as 10 and 20min post-stimulation. Our results show that LI-rMS does not alter passive membrane properties (resting membrane potential and input resistance) but hyperpolarises action potential threshold and increases evoked spike-firing frequency. Increases in spike firing frequency were present throughout the 20min post-stimulation whereas action potential (AP) threshold hyperpolarization was present immediately after stimulation and at 20min post-stimulation. These results provide evidence that LI-rMS alters neuronal excitability of excitatory neurons. We suggest that regions outside the targeted region of high-intensity rTMS are susceptible to neuromodulation and may contribute to rTMS-induced plasticity. Copyright © 2016 IBRO. All rights reserved.

  9. Neuronal vacuolation and spinocerebellar degeneration associated with altered neurotransmission

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aggeliki Giannakopoulou

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Inherited neurodegenerative disorders are debilitating diseases that occur across different species, such as the domestic dog (Canis lupus familiaris, and many are caused by mutations in the same genes as corresponding human conditions. In the present study, we report an inherited neurodegenerative condition, termed ‘neuronal vacuolation and spinocerebellar degeneration’ (NVSD which affects neonatal or young dogs, mainly Rottweilers, which recently has been linked with the homozygosity for the RAB3GAP1:c.743delC allele. Mutations in human RAB3GAP1 cause Warburg micro syndrome (WARBM, a severe developmental disorder characterized predominantly by abnormalities of the nervous system including axonal peripheral neuropathy. RAB3GAP1 encodes the catalytic subunit of a GTPase activator protein and guanine exchange factor for Rab3 and Rab18 proteins, respectively. Rab proteins are involved in membrane trafficking in the endoplasmic reticulum, autophagy, axonal transport and synaptic transmission. The present study attempts to carry out a detailed histopathological examination of NVSD disease, extending from peripheral nerves to lower brain structures focusing on the neurotransmitter alterations noted in the cerebellum, the major structure affected. NVSD dogs presented with progressive cerebellar ataxia and some clinical manifestations that recapitulate the WARBM phenotype. Neuropathological examination revealed dystrophic axons, neurodegeneration and intracellular vacuolization in specific nuclei. In the cerebellum, severe vacuolation of cerebellar nuclei neurons, atrophy of Purkinje cells, and diminishing of GABAergic and glutamatergic fibres constitute the most striking lesions. The balance of evidence suggests that the neuropathological lesions are a reaction to the altered neurotransmission. The canine phenotype could serve as a model to delineate the disease-causing pathological mechanisms in RAB3GAP1 mutation.

  10. GABA Neuron Alterations, Cortical Circuit Dysfunction and Cognitive Deficits in Schizophrenia

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    Guillermo Gonzalez-Burgos

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Schizophrenia is a brain disorder associated with cognitive deficits that severely affect the patients' capacity for daily functioning. Whereas our understanding of its pathophysiology is limited, postmortem studies suggest that schizophrenia is associated with deficits of GABA-mediated synaptic transmission. A major role of GABA-mediated transmission may be producing synchronized network oscillations which are currently hypothesized to be essential for normal cognitive function. Therefore, cognitive deficits in schizophrenia may result from a GABA synapse dysfunction that disturbs neural synchrony. Here, we highlight recent studies further suggesting alterations of GABA transmission and network oscillations in schizophrenia. We also review current models for the mechanisms of GABA-mediated synchronization of neural activity, focusing on parvalbumin-positive GABA neurons, which are altered in schizophrenia and whose function has been strongly linked to the production of neural synchrony. Alterations of GABA signaling that impair gamma oscillations and, as a result, cognitive function suggest paths for novel therapeutic interventions.

  11. GABA neuron alterations, cortical circuit dysfunction and cognitive deficits in schizophrenia.

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    Gonzalez-Burgos, Guillermo; Fish, Kenneth N; Lewis, David A

    2011-01-01

    Schizophrenia is a brain disorder associated with cognitive deficits that severely affect the patients' capacity for daily functioning. Whereas our understanding of its pathophysiology is limited, postmortem studies suggest that schizophrenia is associated with deficits of GABA-mediated synaptic transmission. A major role of GABA-mediated transmission may be producing synchronized network oscillations which are currently hypothesized to be essential for normal cognitive function. Therefore, cognitive deficits in schizophrenia may result from a GABA synapse dysfunction that disturbs neural synchrony. Here, we highlight recent studies further suggesting alterations of GABA transmission and network oscillations in schizophrenia. We also review current models for the mechanisms of GABA-mediated synchronization of neural activity, focusing on parvalbumin-positive GABA neurons, which are altered in schizophrenia and whose function has been strongly linked to the production of neural synchrony. Alterations of GABA signaling that impair gamma oscillations and, as a result, cognitive function suggest paths for novel therapeutic interventions.

  12. Increased histone H3 phosphorylation in neurons in specific brain structures after induction of status epilepticus in mice.

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    Tetsuji Mori

    Full Text Available Status epilepticus (SE induces pathological and morphological changes in the brain. Recently, it has become clear that excessive neuronal excitation, stress and drug abuse induce chromatin remodeling in neurons, thereby altering gene expression. Chromatin remodeling is a key mechanism of epigenetic gene regulation. Histone H3 phosphorylation is frequently used as a marker of chromatin remodeling and is closely related to the upregulation of mRNA transcription. In the present study, we analyzed H3 phosphorylation levels in vivo using immunohistochemistry in the brains of mice with pilocarpine-induced SE. A substantial increase in H3 phosphorylation was detected in neurons in specific brain structures. Increased H3 phosphorylation was dependent on neuronal excitation. In particular, a robust upregulation of H3 phosphorylation was detected in the caudate putamen, and there was a gradient of phosphorylated H3(+ (PH3(+ neurons along the medio-lateral axis. After unilateral ablation of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra by injection of 6-hydroxydopamine, the distribution of PH3(+ neurons changed in the caudate putamen. Moreover, our histological analysis suggested that, in addition to the well-known MSK1 (mitogen and stress-activated kinase/H3 phosphorylation/c-fos pathway, other signaling pathways were also activated. Together, our findings suggest that a number of genes involved in the pathology of epileptogenesis are upregulated in PH3(+ brain regions, and that H3 phosphorylation is a suitable indicator of strong neuronal excitation.

  13. Calcitonin gene-related peptide alters the firing rates of hypothalamic temperature sensitive and insensitive neurons

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    Grimm Eleanor R

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Transient hyperthermic shifts in body temperature have been linked to the endogenous hormone calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP, which can increase sympathetic activation and metabolic heat production. Recent studies have demonstrated that these centrally mediated responses may result from CGRP dependent changes in the activity of thermoregulatory neurons in the preoptic and anterior regions of the hypothalamus (POAH. Results Using a tissue slice preparation, we recorded the single-unit activity of POAH neurons from the adult male rat, in response to temperature and CGRP (10 μM. Based on the slope of firing rate as a function of temperature, neurons were classified as either warm sensitive or temperature insensitive. All warm sensitive neurons responded to CGRP with a significant decrease in firing rate. While CGRP did not alter the firing rates of some temperature insensitive neurons, responsive neurons showed an increase in firing rate. Conclusion With respect to current models of thermoregulatory control, these CGRP dependent changes in firing rate would result in hyperthermia. This suggests that both warm sensitive and temperature insensitive neurons in the POAH may play a role in producing this hyperthermic shift in temperature.

  14. Fear conditioning leads to alteration in specific genes expression in cortical and thalamic neurons that project to the lateral amygdala.

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    Katz, Ira K; Lamprecht, Raphael

    2015-02-01

    RNA transcription is needed for memory formation. However, the ability to identify genes whose expression is altered by learning is greatly impaired because of methodological difficulties in profiling gene expression in specific neurons involved in memory formation. Here, we report a novel approach to monitor the expression of genes after learning in neurons in specific brain pathways needed for memory formation. In this study, we aimed to monitor gene expression after fear learning. We retrogradely labeled discrete thalamic neurons that project to the lateral amygdala (LA) of rats. The labeled neurons were dissected, using laser microdissection microscopy, after fear conditioning learning or unpaired training. The RNAs from the dissected neurons were subjected to microarray analysis. The levels of selected RNAs detected by the microarray analysis to be altered by fear conditioning were also assessed by nanostring analysis. We observed that the expression of genes involved in the regulation of translation, maturation and degradation of proteins was increased 6 h after fear conditioning compared to unpaired or naïve trained rats. These genes were not expressed 24 h after training or in cortical neurons that project to the LA. The expression of genes involved in transcription regulation and neuronal development was altered after fear conditioning learning in the cortical-LA pathway. The present study provides key information on the identity of genes expressed in discrete thalamic and cortical neurons that project to the LA after fear conditioning. Such an approach could also serve to identify gene products as targets for the development of a new generation of therapeutic agents that could be aimed to functionally identified brain circuits to treat memory-related disorders. © 2014 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  15. Long-Term Sensitization Training in "Aplysia" Decreases the Excitability of a Decision-Making Neuron through a Sodium-Dependent Mechanism

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    Hernandez, John S.; Wainwright, Marcy L.; Mozzachiodi, Riccardo

    2017-01-01

    In "Aplysia," long-term sensitization (LTS) occurs concurrently with a suppression of feeding. At the cellular level, the suppression of feeding is accompanied by decreased excitability of decision-making neuron B51. We examined the contribution of voltage-gated Na[superscript +] and K[superscript +] channels to B51 decreased…

  16. Cellular hyper-excitability caused by mutations that alter the activation process of voltage-gated sodium channels

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    Mohamed-Yassine eAMAROUCH

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Voltage-gated sodium channels (Nav are widely expressed as macro-molecular complexes in both excitable and non-excitable tissues. In excitable tissues, the upstroke of the action potential is the result of the passage of a large and rapid influx of sodium ions through these channels. NaV dysfunction has been associated with an increasingly wide range of neurological, muscular and cardiac disorders. The purpose of this review is to summarize the recently identified sodium channel mutations that are linked to hyper-excitability phenotypes and associated with the alteration of the activation process of voltage gated sodium channels. Indeed, several clinical manifestations that demonstrate an alteration of tissue excitability were recently shown to be strongly associated with the presence of mutations that affect the activation process of the voltage-gated sodium channels. These emerging genotype-phenotype correlations have expanded the clinical spectrum of sodium channelopathies to include disorders which feature a hyper-excitability phenotype that may or may not be associated with a cardiomyopathy. The p.I141V mutation in SCN4A and SCN5A, as well as its homologous p.I136V mutation in SCN9A, are interesting examples of mutations that have been linked to inherited hyperexcitability myotonia, exercise-induced polymorphic ventricular arrhythmias and erythromelalgia, respectively. Regardless of which sodium channel isoform is investigated, the substitution of the isoleucine to valine in the locus 141 induces similar modifications in the biophysical properties of the voltage-gated sodium channels by shifting the voltage-dependence of steady state activation towards more negative potentials.

  17. Subthalamic nucleus high-frequency stimulation restores altered electrophysiological properties of cortical neurons in parkinsonian rat.

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    Bertrand Degos

    Full Text Available Electrophysiological recordings performed in parkinsonian patients and animal models have confirmed the occurrence of alterations in firing rate and pattern of basal ganglia neurons, but the outcome of these changes in thalamo-cortical networks remains unclear. Using rats rendered parkinsonian, we investigated, at a cellular level in vivo, the electrophysiological changes induced in the pyramidal cells of the motor cortex by the dopaminergic transmission interruption and further characterized the impact of high-frequency electrical stimulation of the subthalamic nucleus, a procedure alleviating parkinsonian symptoms. We provided evidence that a lesion restricted to the substantia nigra pars compacta resulted in a marked increase in the mean firing rate and bursting pattern of pyramidal neurons of the motor cortex. These alterations were underlain by changes of the electrical membranes properties of pyramidal cells including depolarized resting membrane potential and increased input resistance. The modifications induced by the dopaminergic loss were more pronounced in cortico-striatal than in cortico-subthalamic neurons. Furthermore, subthalamic nucleus high-frequency stimulation applied at parameters alleviating parkinsonian signs regularized the firing pattern of pyramidal cells and restored their electrical membrane properties.

  18. Adult neurogenesis modifies excitability of the dentate gyrus

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    Taruna eIkrar

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Adult-born dentate granule neurons contribute to memory encoding functions of the dentate gyrus (DG such as pattern separation. However, local circuit-mechanisms by which adult-born neurons partake in this process are poorly understood. Computational, neuroanatomical and electrophysiological studies suggest that sparseness of activation in the granule cell layer (GCL is conducive for pattern separation. A sparse coding scheme is thought to facilitate the distribution of similar entorhinal inputs across the GCL to decorrelate overlapping representations and minimize interference. Here we used fast voltage-sensitive dye (VSD imaging combined with laser photostimulation and electrical stimulation to examine how selectively increasing adult DG neurogenesis influences local circuit activity and excitability. We show that DG of mice with more adult-born neurons exhibits decreased strength of neuronal activation and more restricted excitation spread in GCL while maintaining effective output to CA3c. Conversely, blockade of adult hippocampal neurogenesis changed excitability of the DG in the opposite direction. Analysis of GABAergic inhibition onto mature dentate granule neurons in the DG of mice with more adult-born neurons shows a modest readjustment of perisomatic inhibitory synaptic gain without changes in overall inhibitory tone, presynaptic properties or GABAergic innervation pattern. Retroviral labeling of connectivity in mice with more adult-born neurons showed increased number of excitatory synaptic contacts of adult-born neurons onto hilar interneurons. Together, these studies demonstrate that adult hippocampal neurogenesis modifies excitability of mature dentate granule neurons and that this non-cell autonomous effect may be mediated by local circuit mechanisms such as excitatory drive onto hilar interneurons. Modulation of DG excitability by adult-born dentate granule neurons may enhance sparse coding in the GCL to influence pattern

  19. Manipulating the Cellular Circadian Period of Arginine Vasopressin Neurons Alters the Behavioral Circadian Period.

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    Mieda, Michihiro; Okamoto, Hitoshi; Sakurai, Takeshi

    2016-09-26

    As the central pacemaker in mammals, the circadian clock in the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) of the hypothalamus is a heterogeneous structure consisting of multiple types of GABAergic neurons with distinct chemical identities [1, 2]. Although individual cells have a cellular clock driven by autoregulatory transcriptional/translational feedback loops of clock genes, interneuronal communication among SCN clock neurons is likely essential for the SCN to generate a highly robust, coherent circadian rhythm [1]. However, neuronal mechanisms that determine circadian period length remain unclear. The SCN is composed of two subdivisions: a ventral core region containing vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP)-producing neurons and a dorsal shell region characterized by arginine vasopressin (AVP)-producing neurons. Here we examined whether AVP neurons act as pacemaker cells that regulate the circadian period of behavior rhythm in mice. The deletion of casein kinase 1 delta (CK1δ) specific to AVP neurons, which was expected to lengthen the period of cellular clocks [3-6], lengthened the free-running period of circadian behavior as well. Conversely, the overexpression of CK1δ specific to SCN AVP neurons shortened the free-running period. PER2::LUC imaging in slices confirmed that cellular circadian periods of the SCN shell were lengthened in mice without CK1δ in AVP neurons. Thus, AVP neurons may be an essential component of circadian pacemaker cells in the SCN. Remarkably, the alteration of the shell-core phase relationship in the SCN of these mice did not impair the generation per se of circadian behavior rhythm, thereby underscoring the robustness of the SCN network. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Intracellular pH regulation by acid-base transporters in mammalian neurons

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    Ruffin, Vernon A.; Salameh, Ahlam I.; Boron, Walter F.; Parker, Mark D.

    2014-01-01

    Intracellular pH (pHi) regulation in the brain is important in both physiological and physiopathological conditions because changes in pHi generally result in altered neuronal excitability. In this review, we will cover 4 major areas: (1) The effect of pHi on cellular processes in the brain, including channel activity and neuronal excitability. (2) pHi homeostasis and how it is determined by the balance between rates of acid loading (JL) and extrusion (JE). The balance between JE and JL determine steady-state pHi, as well as the ability of the cell to defend pHi in the face of extracellular acid-base disturbances (e.g., metabolic acidosis). (3) The properties and importance of members of the SLC4 and SLC9 families of acid-base transporters expressed in the brain that contribute to JL (namely the Cl-HCO3 exchanger AE3) and JE (the Na-H exchangers NHE1, NHE3, and NHE5 as well as the Na+- coupled HCO3− transporters NBCe1, NBCn1, NDCBE, and NBCn2). (4) The effect of acid-base disturbances on neuronal function and the roles of acid-base transporters in defending neuronal pHi under physiopathologic conditions. PMID:24592239

  1. Neuron Morphology Influences Axon Initial Segment Plasticity123

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-01-01

    In most vertebrate neurons, action potentials are initiated in the axon initial segment (AIS), a specialized region of the axon containing a high density of voltage-gated sodium and potassium channels. It has recently been proposed that neurons use plasticity of AIS length and/or location to regulate their intrinsic excitability. Here we quantify the impact of neuron morphology on AIS plasticity using computational models of simplified and realistic somatodendritic morphologies. In small neurons (e.g., dentate granule neurons), excitability was highest when the AIS was of intermediate length and located adjacent to the soma. Conversely, neurons having larger dendritic trees (e.g., pyramidal neurons) were most excitable when the AIS was longer and/or located away from the soma. For any given somatodendritic morphology, increasing dendritic membrane capacitance and/or conductance favored a longer and more distally located AIS. Overall, changes to AIS length, with corresponding changes in total sodium conductance, were far more effective in regulating neuron excitability than were changes in AIS location, while dendritic capacitance had a larger impact on AIS performance than did dendritic conductance. The somatodendritic influence on AIS performance reflects modest soma-to-AIS voltage attenuation combined with neuron size-dependent changes in AIS input resistance, effective membrane time constant, and isolation from somatodendritic capacitance. We conclude that the impact of AIS plasticity on neuron excitability will depend largely on somatodendritic morphology, and that, in some neurons, a shorter or more distally located AIS may promote, rather than limit, action potential generation. PMID:27022619

  2. Advanced type 1 diabetes is associated with ASIC alterations in mouse lower thoracic dorsal root ganglia neurons.

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    Radu, Beatrice Mihaela; Dumitrescu, Diana Ionela; Marin, Adela; Banciu, Daniel Dumitru; Iancu, Adina Daniela; Selescu, Tudor; Radu, Mihai

    2014-01-01

    Acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) from dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons are proton sensors during ischemia and inflammation. Little is known about their role in type 1 diabetes (T1D). Our study was focused on ASICs alterations determined by advanced T1D status. Primary neuronal cultures were obtained from lower (T9-T12) thoracic DRG neurons from Balb/c and TCR-HA(+/-)/Ins-HA(+/-) diabetic male mice (16 weeks of age). Patch-clamp recordings indicate a change in the number of small DRG neurons presenting different ASIC-type currents. Multiple molecular sites of ASICs are distinctly affected in T1D, probably due to particular steric constraints for glycans accessibility to the active site: (i) ASIC1 current inactivates faster, while ASIC2 is slower; (ii) PcTx1 partly reverts diabetes effects against ASIC1- and ASIC2-inactivations; (iii) APETx2 maintains unaltered potency against ASIC3 current amplitude, but slows ASIC3 inactivation. Immunofluorescence indicates opposite regulation of different ASIC transcripts while qRT-PCR shows that ASIC mRNA ranking (ASIC2 > ASIC1 > ASIC3) remains unaltered. In conclusion, our study has identified biochemical and biophysical ASIC changes in lower thoracic DRG neurons due to advanced T1D. As hypoalgesia is present in advanced T1D, ASICs alterations might be the cause or the consequence of diabetic insensate neuropathy.

  3. Nerve growth factor alters microtubule targeting agent-induced neurotransmitter release but not MTA-induced neurite retraction in sensory neurons.

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    Pittman, Sherry K; Gracias, Neilia G; Fehrenbacher, Jill C

    2016-05-01

    Peripheral neuropathy is a dose-limiting side effect of anticancer treatment with the microtubule-targeted agents (MTAs), paclitaxel and epothilone B (EpoB); however, the mechanisms by which the MTAs alter neuronal function and morphology are unknown. We previously demonstrated that paclitaxel alters neuronal sensitivity, in vitro, in the presence of nerve growth factor (NGF). Evidence in the literature suggests that NGF may modulate the neurotoxic effects of paclitaxel. Here, we examine whether NGF modulates changes in neuronal sensitivity and morphology induced by paclitaxel and EpoB. Neuronal sensitivity was assessed using the stimulated release of calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP), whereas morphology of established neurites was evaluated using a high content screening system. Dorsal root ganglion cultures, maintained in the absence or presence of NGF, were treated from day 7 to day 12 in culture with paclitaxel (300nM) or EpoB (30nM). Following treatment, the release of CGRP was stimulated using capsaicin or high extracellular potassium. In the presence of NGF, EpoB mimicked the effects of paclitaxel: capsaicin-stimulated release was attenuated, potassium-stimulated release was slightly enhanced and the total peptide content was unchanged. In the absence of NGF, both paclitaxel and EpoB decreased capsaicin- and potassium-stimulated release and the total peptide content, suggesting that NGF may reverse MTA-induced hyposensitivity. Paclitaxel and EpoB both decreased neurite length and branching, and this attenuation was unaffected by NGF in the growth media. These differential effects of NGF on neuronal sensitivity and morphology suggest that neurite retraction is not a causative factor to alter neuronal sensitivity. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Duration of inhibition of ventral tegmental area dopamine neurons encodes a level of conditioned fear.

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    Mileykovskiy, Boris; Morales, Marisela

    2011-05-18

    It is widely accepted that midbrain dopamine (DA) neurons encode actual and expected reward values by phasic alterations in firing rate. However, how DA neurons encode negative events in the environment is still unclear because some DA neurons appear to be depressed and others excited by aversive stimuli. Here, we show that exposing fear-conditioned rats to stimuli predicting electrical shock elicited three types of biphasic responses, each of which contained an inhibitory pause, in neurochemically identified ventral tegmental area (VTA) DA neurons. The duration of the inhibitory pause in these responses of VTA DA neurons was in direct proportion to the increase in respiratory rate reflecting the level of conditioned fear. Our results suggest that the duration of inhibition of VTA DA neurons encodes negative emotional values of signals predicting aversive events in the environment.

  5. Excitation of lateral habenula neurons as a neural mechanism underlying ethanol-induced conditioned taste aversion.

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    Tandon, Shashank; Keefe, Kristen A; Taha, Sharif A

    2017-02-15

    The lateral habenula (LHb) has been implicated in regulation of drug-seeking behaviours through aversion-mediated learning. In this study, we recorded neuronal activity in the LHb of rats during an operant task before and after ethanol-induced conditioned taste aversion (CTA) to saccharin. Ethanol-induced CTA caused significantly higher baseline firing rates in LHb neurons, as well as elevated firing rates in response to cue presentation, lever press and saccharin taste. In a separate cohort of rats, we found that bilateral LHb lesions blocked ethanol-induced CTA. Our results strongly suggest that excitation of LHb neurons is required for ethanol-induced CTA, and point towards a mechanism through which LHb firing may regulate voluntary ethanol consumption. Ethanol, like other drugs of abuse, has both rewarding and aversive properties. Previous work suggests that sensitivity to ethanol's aversive effects negatively modulates voluntary alcohol intake and thus may be important in vulnerability to developing alcohol use disorders. We previously found that rats with lesions of the lateral habenula (LHb), which is implicated in aversion-mediated learning, show accelerated escalation of voluntary ethanol consumption. To understand neural encoding in the LHb contributing to ethanol-induced aversion, we recorded neural firing in the LHb of freely behaving, water-deprived rats before and after an ethanol-induced (1.5 g kg -1 20% ethanol, i.p.) conditioned taste aversion (CTA) to saccharin taste. Ethanol-induced CTA strongly decreased motivation for saccharin in an operant task to obtain the tastant. Comparison of LHb neural firing before and after CTA induction revealed four main differences in firing properties. First, baseline firing after CTA induction was significantly higher. Second, firing evoked by cues signalling saccharin availability shifted from a pattern of primarily inhibition before CTA to primarily excitation after CTA induction. Third, CTA induction reduced

  6. Excitation of lateral habenula neurons as a neural mechanism underlying ethanol‐induced conditioned taste aversion

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    Keefe, Kristen A.; Taha, Sharif A.

    2016-01-01

    Key points The lateral habenula (LHb) has been implicated in regulation of drug‐seeking behaviours through aversion‐mediated learning.In this study, we recorded neuronal activity in the LHb of rats during an operant task before and after ethanol‐induced conditioned taste aversion (CTA) to saccharin.Ethanol‐induced CTA caused significantly higher baseline firing rates in LHb neurons, as well as elevated firing rates in response to cue presentation, lever press and saccharin taste.In a separate cohort of rats, we found that bilateral LHb lesions blocked ethanol‐induced CTA.Our results strongly suggest that excitation of LHb neurons is required for ethanol‐induced CTA, and point towards a mechanism through which LHb firing may regulate voluntary ethanol consumption. Abstract Ethanol, like other drugs of abuse, has both rewarding and aversive properties. Previous work suggests that sensitivity to ethanol's aversive effects negatively modulates voluntary alcohol intake and thus may be important in vulnerability to developing alcohol use disorders. We previously found that rats with lesions of the lateral habenula (LHb), which is implicated in aversion‐mediated learning, show accelerated escalation of voluntary ethanol consumption. To understand neural encoding in the LHb contributing to ethanol‐induced aversion, we recorded neural firing in the LHb of freely behaving, water‐deprived rats before and after an ethanol‐induced (1.5 g kg−1 20% ethanol, i.p.) conditioned taste aversion (CTA) to saccharin taste. Ethanol‐induced CTA strongly decreased motivation for saccharin in an operant task to obtain the tastant. Comparison of LHb neural firing before and after CTA induction revealed four main differences in firing properties. First, baseline firing after CTA induction was significantly higher. Second, firing evoked by cues signalling saccharin availability shifted from a pattern of primarily inhibition before CTA to primarily excitation after CTA

  7. Labeling of neuronal differentiation and neuron cells with biocompatible fluorescent nanodiamonds.

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    Hsu, Tzu-Chia; Liu, Kuang-Kai; Chang, Huan-Cheng; Hwang, Eric; Chao, Jui-I

    2014-05-16

    Nanodiamond is a promising carbon nanomaterial developed for biomedical applications. Here, we show fluorescent nanodiamond (FND) with the biocompatible properties that can be used for the labeling and tracking of neuronal differentiation and neuron cells derived from embryonal carcinoma stem (ECS) cells. The fluorescence intensities of FNDs were increased by treatment with FNDs in both the mouse P19 and human NT2/D1 ECS cells. FNDs were taken into ECS cells; however, FNDs did not alter the cellular morphology and growth ability. Moreover, FNDs did not change the protein expression of stem cell marker SSEA-1 of ECS cells. The neuronal differentiation of ECS cells could be induced by retinoic acid (RA). Interestingly, FNDs did not affect on the morphological alteration, cytotoxicity and apoptosis during the neuronal differentiation. Besides, FNDs did not alter the cell viability and the expression of neuron-specific marker β-III-tubulin in these differentiated neuron cells. The existence of FNDs in the neuron cells can be identified by confocal microscopy and flow cytometry. Together, FND is a biocompatible and readily detectable nanomaterial for the labeling and tracking of neuronal differentiation process and neuron cells from stem cells.

  8. Hyperactivity of newborn Pten knock-out neurons results from increased excitatory synaptic drive.

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    Williams, Michael R; DeSpenza, Tyrone; Li, Meijie; Gulledge, Allan T; Luikart, Bryan W

    2015-01-21

    Developing neurons must regulate morphology, intrinsic excitability, and synaptogenesis to form neural circuits. When these processes go awry, disorders, including autism spectrum disorder (ASD) or epilepsy, may result. The phosphatase Pten is mutated in some patients having ASD and seizures, suggesting that its mutation disrupts neurological function in part through increasing neuronal activity. Supporting this idea, neuronal knock-out of Pten in mice can cause macrocephaly, behavioral changes similar to ASD, and seizures. However, the mechanisms through which excitability is enhanced following Pten depletion are unclear. Previous studies have separately shown that Pten-depleted neurons can drive seizures, receive elevated excitatory synaptic input, and have abnormal dendrites. We therefore tested the hypothesis that developing Pten-depleted neurons are hyperactive due to increased excitatory synaptogenesis using electrophysiology, calcium imaging, morphological analyses, and modeling. This was accomplished by coinjecting retroviruses to either "birthdate" or birthdate and knock-out Pten in granule neurons of the murine neonatal dentate gyrus. We found that Pten knock-out neurons, despite a rapid onset of hypertrophy, were more active in vivo. Pten knock-out neurons fired at more hyperpolarized membrane potentials, displayed greater peak spike rates, and were more sensitive to depolarizing synaptic input. The increased sensitivity of Pten knock-out neurons was due, in part, to a higher density of synapses located more proximal to the soma. We determined that increased synaptic drive was sufficient to drive hypertrophic Pten knock-out neurons beyond their altered action potential threshold. Thus, our work contributes a developmental mechanism for the increased activity of Pten-depleted neurons. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/350943-17$15.00/0.

  9. Reliable activation of immature neurons in the adult hippocampus.

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    Lucas A Mongiat

    Full Text Available Neurons born in the adult dentate gyrus develop, mature, and connect over a long interval that can last from six to eight weeks. It has been proposed that, during this period, developing neurons play a relevant role in hippocampal signal processing owing to their distinctive electrical properties. However, it has remained unknown whether immature neurons can be recruited into a network before synaptic and functional maturity have been achieved. To address this question, we used retroviral expression of green fluorescent protein to identify developing granule cells of the adult mouse hippocampus and investigate the balance of afferent excitation, intrinsic excitability, and firing behavior by patch clamp recordings in acute slices. We found that glutamatergic inputs onto young neurons are significantly weaker than those of mature cells, yet stimulation of cortical excitatory axons elicits a similar spiking probability in neurons at either developmental stage. Young neurons are highly efficient in transducing ionic currents into membrane depolarization due to their high input resistance, which decreases substantially in mature neurons as the inward rectifier potassium (Kir conductance increases. Pharmacological blockade of Kir channels in mature neurons mimics the high excitability characteristic of young neurons. Conversely, Kir overexpression induces mature-like firing properties in young neurons. Therefore, the differences in excitatory drive of young and mature neurons are compensated by changes in membrane excitability that render an equalized firing activity. These observations demonstrate that the adult hippocampus continuously generates a population of highly excitable young neurons capable of information processing.

  10. Neurotransmission to parasympathetic cardiac vagal neurons in the brain stem is altered with left ventricular hypertrophy-induced heart failure.

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    Cauley, Edmund; Wang, Xin; Dyavanapalli, Jhansi; Sun, Ke; Garrott, Kara; Kuzmiak-Glancy, Sarah; Kay, Matthew W; Mendelowitz, David

    2015-10-01

    Hypertension, cardiac hypertrophy, and heart failure (HF) are widespread and debilitating cardiovascular diseases that affect nearly 23 million people worldwide. A distinctive hallmark of these cardiovascular diseases is autonomic imbalance, with increased sympathetic activity and decreased parasympathetic vagal tone. Recent device-based approaches, such as implantable vagal stimulators that stimulate a multitude of visceral sensory and motor fibers in the vagus nerve, are being evaluated as new therapeutic approaches for these and other diseases. However, little is known about how parasympathetic activity to the heart is altered with these diseases, and this lack of knowledge is an obstacle in the goal of devising selective interventions that can target and selectively restore parasympathetic activity to the heart. To identify the changes that occur within the brain stem to diminish the parasympathetic cardiac activity, left ventricular hypertrophy was elicited in rats by aortic pressure overload using a transaortic constriction approach. Cardiac vagal neurons (CVNs) in the brain stem that generate parasympathetic activity to the heart were identified with a retrograde tracer and studied using patch-clamp electrophysiological recordings in vitro. Animals with left cardiac hypertrophy had diminished excitation of CVNs, which was mediated both by an augmented frequency of spontaneous inhibitory GABAergic neurotransmission (with no alteration of inhibitory glycinergic activity) as well as a diminished amplitude and frequency of excitatory neurotransmission to CVNs. Opportunities to alter these network pathways and neurotransmitter receptors provide future targets of intervention in the goal to restore parasympathetic activity and autonomic balance to the heart in cardiac hypertrophy and other cardiovascular diseases. Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.

  11. Overactivity of Liver-Related Neurons in the Paraventricular Nucleus of the Hypothalamus: Electrophysiological Findings in db/db Mice.

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    Gao, Hong; Molinas, Adrien J R; Miyata, Kayoko; Qiao, Xin; Zsombok, Andrea

    2017-11-15

    Preautonomic neurons in the paraventricular nucleus (PVN) of the hypothalamus play a large role in the regulation of hepatic functions via the autonomic nervous system. Activation of hepatic sympathetic nerves increases glucose and lipid metabolism and contributes to the elevated hepatic glucose production observed in the type 2 diabetic condition. This augmented sympathetic output could originate from altered activity of liver-related PVN neurons. Remarkably, despite the importance of the brain-liver pathway, the cellular properties of liver-related neurons are not known. In this study, we provide the first evidence of overall activity of liver-related PVN neurons. Liver-related PVN neurons were identified with a retrograde, trans-synaptic, viral tracer in male lean and db/db mice and whole-cell patch-clamp recordings were conducted. In db/db mice, the majority of liver-related PVN neurons fired spontaneously; whereas, in lean mice the majority of liver-related PVN neurons were silent, indicating that liver-related PVN neurons are more active in db/db mice. Persistent, tonic inhibition was identified in liver-related PVN neurons; although, the magnitude of tonic inhibitory control was not different between lean and db/db mice. In addition, our study revealed that the transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1-dependent increase of excitatory neurotransmission was reduced in liver-related PVN neurons of db/db mice. These findings demonstrate plasticity of liver-related PVN neurons and a shift toward excitation in a diabetic mouse model. Our study suggests altered autonomic circuits at the level of the PVN, which can contribute to autonomic dysfunction and dysregulation of neural control of hepatic functions including glucose metabolism. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT A growing body of evidence suggests the importance of the autonomic control in the regulation of hepatic metabolism, which plays a major role in the development and progression of type 2 diabetes mellitus

  12. Levetiracetam differentially alters CD95 expression of neuronal cells and the mitochondrial membrane potential of immune and neuronal cells in vitro

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susannah K Rogers

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Epilepsy is a neurological seizure disorder that affects over 100 million people worldwide. Levetiracetam, either alone, as monotherapy, or as adjunctive treatment, is widely used to control certain types of seizures. Despite its increasing popularity as a relatively safe and effective anti-convulsive treatment option, its mechanism(s of action are poorly understood. Studies have suggested neuronal, glial, and immune mechanisms of action. Understanding the precise mechanisms of action of Levetiracetam would be extremely beneficial in helping to understand the processes involved in seizure generation and epilepsy. Moreover, a full understanding of these mechanisms would help to create more efficacious treatments while minimizing side effects. The current study examined the effects of Levetiracetam on the mitochondrial membrane potential of neuronal and non-neuronal cells, in vitro, in order to determine if Levetiracetam influences metabolic processes in these cell types. In addition, this study sought to address possible immune-mediated mechanisms by determining if Levetiracetam alters the expression of immune receptor-ligand pairs. The results show that Levetiracetam induces expression of CD95 and CD178 on NGF-treated C17.2 neuronal cells. The results also show that Levetiracetam increases mitochondrial membrane potential on C17.2 neuronal cells in the presence of nerve growth factor. In contrast, Levetiracetam decreases the mitochondrial membrane potential of splenocytes and this effect was dependent on intact invariant chain, thus implicating immune cell interactions. These results suggest that both neuronal and non-neuronal anti-epileptic activities of Levetiracetam involve control over energy metabolism, more specifically, mΔΨ. Future studies are needed to further investigate this potential mechanism of action.

  13. Long-term potentiation of synaptic response and intrinsic excitability in neurons of the rat medial vestibular nuclei.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pettorossi, V E; Dieni, C V; Scarduzio, M; Grassi, S

    2011-07-28

    Using intracellular recordings, we investigated the effects of high frequency stimulation (HFS) of the primary vestibular afferents on the evoked excitatory postsynaptic potential (EPSP) and intrinsic excitability (IE) of type-A and type-B neurons of the medial vestibular nucleus (MVN), in male rat brainstem slices. HFS induces long-term potentiation (LTP) of both EPSP and IE, which may occur in combination or separately. Synaptic LTP is characterized by an increase in the amplitude, slope and decay time constant of EPSP and IE-LTP through enhancements of spontaneous and evoked neuron firing and of input resistance (Rin). Moreover, IE-LTP is associated with a decrease in action potential afterhyperpolarization (AHP) amplitude and an increase in interspike slope steepness (ISS). The more frequent effects of HFS are EPSP-LTP in type-B neurons and IE-LTP in type-A neurons. In addition, the development of EPSP-LTP is fast in type-B neurons but slow in type-A, whereas IE-LTP develops slowly in both types. We have demonstrated that activation of N-methyl-d aspartate receptors (NMDARs) is only required for EPSP-LTP induction, whereas metabotropic glutamate receptors type-1 (mGluR1) are necessary for IE-LTP induction as well as the full development and maintenance of EPSP-LTP. Taken together, these findings demonstrate that brief and intense activation of vestibular afferent input to the MVN neurons may provoke synaptic LTP and/or IE-LTP that, induced in combination or separately, may assure the different selectivity of the MVN neuron response enhancement to the afferent signals. Copyright © 2011 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Acute treatment with 17beta-estradiol attenuates astrocyte-astrocyte and astrocyte-neuron communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rao, Shilpa P; Sikdar, Sujit Kumar

    2007-12-01

    Astrocytes are now recognized as dynamic signaling elements in the brain. Bidirectional communication between neurons and astrocytes involves integration of neuronal inputs by astrocytes and release of gliotransmitters that modulate neuronal excitability and synaptic transmission. The ovarian steroid hormone, 17beta-estradiol, in addition to its rapid actions on neuronal electrical activity can rapidly alter astrocyte intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca2+]i) through a membrane-associated estrogen receptor. Using calcium imaging and electrophysiological techniques, we investigated the functional consequences of acute treatment with estradiol on astrocyte-astrocyte and astrocyte-neuron communication in mixed hippocampal cultures. Mechanical stimulation of an astrocyte evoked a [Ca2+]i rise in the stimulated astrocyte, which propagated to the surrounding astrocytes as a [Ca2+]i wave. Following acute treatment with estradiol, the amplitude of the [Ca2+]i elevation in astrocytes around the stimulated astrocyte was attenuated. Further, estradiol inhibited the [Ca2+]i rise in individual astrocytes in response to the metabotropic glutamate receptor agonist, trans-(+/-)-1-amino-1,3-cyclopentanedicarboxylic acid. Mechanical stimulation of astrocytes induced [Ca2+]i elevations and electrophysiological responses in adjacent neurons. Estradiol rapidly attenuated the astrocyte-evoked glutamate-mediated [Ca2+]i rise and slow inward current in neurons. Also, the incidence of astrocyte-induced increase in spontaneous postsynaptic current frequency was reduced in the presence of estradiol. The effects of estradiol were stereo-specific and reversible following washout. These findings may indicate that the regulation of neuronal excitability and synaptic transmission by astrocytes is sensitive to rapid estradiol-mediated hormonal control. (c) 2007 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  15. Age-related changes in nicotine response of cholinergic and non-cholinergic laterodorsal tegmental neurons: implications for the heightened adolescent susceptibility to nicotine addiction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christensen, Mark H.; Ishibashi, Masaru; Nielsen, Michael L.; Leonard, Christopher S.; Kohlmeier, Kristi A.

    2015-01-01

    The younger an individual starts smoking, the greater the likelihood that addiction to nicotine will develop, suggesting that neurobiological responses vary across age to the addictive component of cigarettes. Cholinergic neurons of the laterodorsal tegmental nucleus (LDT) are importantly involved in the development of addiction, however, the effects of nicotine on LDT neuronal excitability across ontogeny are unknown. Nicotinic effects on several parameters affecting LDT cells across different age groups were examined using calcium imaging and whole-cell patch clamping. Within the youngest age group (P7-P15), nicotine was found to induce larger intracellular calcium transients and inward currents. Nicotine induced a greater number of excitatory synaptic currents in the youngest animals, whereas larger amplitude inhibitory synaptic events were induced in cells from the oldest animals (P15-P34). Nicotine increased neuronal firing of cholinergic cells to a greater degree in younger animals, possibly linked to development associated differences found in nicotinic effects on action potential shape and afterhyperpolarization. We conclude that in addition to age-associated alterations of several properties expected to affect resting cell excitability, parameters affecting cell excitability are altered by nicotine differentially across ontogeny. Taken together, our data suggest that nicotine induces a larger excitatory response in cholinergic LDT neurons from the youngest animals, which could result in a greater excitatory output from these cells to target regions involved in development of addiction. Such output would be expected to be promotive of addiction; therefore, ontogenetic differences in nicotine-mediated increases in the excitability of the LDT could contribute to the differential susceptibility to nicotine addiction seen across age. PMID:24863041

  16. Bistable dynamics underlying excitability of ion homeostasis in neuron models.

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    Niklas Hübel

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available When neurons fire action potentials, dissipation of free energy is usually not directly considered, because the change in free energy is often negligible compared to the immense reservoir stored in neural transmembrane ion gradients and the long-term energy requirements are met through chemical energy, i.e., metabolism. However, these gradients can temporarily nearly vanish in neurological diseases, such as migraine and stroke, and in traumatic brain injury from concussions to severe injuries. We study biophysical neuron models based on the Hodgkin-Huxley (HH formalism extended to include time-dependent ion concentrations inside and outside the cell and metabolic energy-driven pumps. We reveal the basic mechanism of a state of free energy-starvation (FES with bifurcation analyses showing that ion dynamics is for a large range of pump rates bistable without contact to an ion bath. This is interpreted as a threshold reduction of a new fundamental mechanism of ionic excitability that causes a long-lasting but transient FES as observed in pathological states. We can in particular conclude that a coupling of extracellular ion concentrations to a large glial-vascular bath can take a role as an inhibitory mechanism crucial in ion homeostasis, while the Na⁺/K⁺ pumps alone are insufficient to recover from FES. Our results provide the missing link between the HH formalism and activator-inhibitor models that have been successfully used for modeling migraine phenotypes, and therefore will allow us to validate the hypothesis that migraine symptoms are explained by disturbed function in ion channel subunits, Na⁺/K⁺ pumps, and other proteins that regulate ion homeostasis.

  17. Ultrastructural Alterations of Von Economo Neurons in the Anterior Cingulate Cortex in Schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krause, Martin; Theiss, Carsten; Brüne, Martin

    2017-11-01

    Von Economo neurons (VENs) are large bipolar projection neurons mainly located in layer Vb of anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and anterior insula. Both regions are involved in cognitive and emotional procedures and are functionally and anatomically altered in schizophrenia. Although the detailed function of VEN remains unclear, it has been suggested that these neurons are involved in the pathomechanism of schizophrenia. Here, we were interested in the question whether or not the VEN of schizophrenia patients would show abnormalities at the ultrastructural level. Accordingly, we examined the amount of lysosomal aggregations of the VEN in post-mortem tissue of patients with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and psychologically unaffected individuals, and compared the findings with aggregations in adjacent pyramidal cells in layer Vb of the ACC. VEN of patients with schizophrenia, and to a lesser degree individuals with bipolar disorder contained significantly more lysosomal aggregations compared with tissue from unaffected controls. Specifically, the larger amount of lysosomal aggregations in schizophrenia seemed to be selective for VEN, with no differences occurring in pyramidal cells. These findings may indicate that the VEN of schizophrenia patients are selectively vulnerable to neuronal damage. Anat Rec, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Anat Rec, 300:2017-2024, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. Recovery of neuronal and network excitability after spinal cord injury and implications for spasticity

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    Jessica Maria D'Amico

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available The state of areflexia and muscle weakness that immediately follows a spinal cord injury is gradually replaced by the recovery of neuronal and network excitability, leading to both improvements in residual motor function and the development of spasticity. In this review we summarize recent animal and human studies that describe how motoneurons and their activation by sensory pathways become hyperexcitable to compensate for the reduction of descending and movement-induced sensory inputs and the eventual impact on the muscle. We discuss how replacing lost patterned activation of the spinal cord by activating synaptic inputs via assisted movements, pharmacology or electrical stimulation may help to recover lost spinal inhibition. This may lead to a reduction of uncontrolled activation of the spinal cord and thus, improve its controlled activation by synaptic inputs to ultimately normalize circuit function. Increasing the excitation of the spinal cord below an injury with spared descending and/or peripheral functional synaptic activation, instead of suppressing it pharmacologically, may provide the best avenue to improve residual motor function and manage spasticity after spinal cord injury.

  19. Altered expression of IGF-I system in neurons of the inflamed spinal cord during acute experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parvaneh Tafreshi, Azita; Talebi, Farideh; Ghorbani, Samira; Bernard, Claude; Noorbakhsh, Farshid

    2017-10-01

    There is growing evidence that the impaired IGF-I system contributes to neurodegeneration. In this study, we examined the spinal cords of the EAE, the animal model of multiple sclerosis, to see if the expression of the IGF-I system is altered. To induce EAE, C57/BL6 mice were immunized with the Hooke lab MOG kit, sacrificed at the peak of the disease and their spinal cords were examined for the immunoreactivities (ir) of the IGF-I, IGF binding protein-1 (IGFBP-1) and glycogen synthase kinase 3β (GSK3β), as one major downstream molecule in the IGF-I signaling. Although neurons in the non EAE spinal cords did not show the IGF-I immunoreactivity, they were numerously positive for the IGFBP-1. In the inflamed EAE spinal cord however, the patterns of expressions were reversed, that is, a significant increased number of IGF-I expressing neurons versus a reduced number of IGFBP-1 positive neurons. Moreover, while nearly all IGF-I-ir neurons expressed GSK3β, some expressed it more intensely. Considering our previous finding where we showed a significant reduced number of the inactive (phosphorylated) but not that of the total GSK3β expressing neurons in the EAE spinal cord, it is conceivable that the intense total GSK3β expression in the IGF-I-ir neurons belongs to the active form of GSK3β known to exert neuroinflammatory effects. We therefore suggest that the altered expression of the IGF-I system including GSK3β in spinal cord neurons might involve in pathophysiological events during the EAE. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  20. Scanless two-photon excitation of channelrhodopsin-2

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Papagiakoumou, E.; Anselmi, F.; Bègue, A.

    2010-01-01

    developed a method that combines generalized phase contrast with temporal focusing (TF-GPC) to shape two-photon excitation for this purpose. The illumination patterns are generated automatically from fluorescence images of neurons and shaped to cover the cell body or dendrites, or distributed groups...... of cells. The TF-GPC two-photon excitation patterns generated large photocurrents in Channelrhodopsin-2–expressing cultured cells and neurons and in mouse acute cortical slices. The amplitudes of the photocurrents can be precisely modulated by controlling the size and shape of the excitation volume and...

  1. Amyloid-beta aggregates cause alterations of astrocytic metabolic phenotype: impact on neuronal viability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allaman, Igor; Gavillet, Mathilde; Bélanger, Mireille; Laroche, Thierry; Viertl, David; Lashuel, Hilal A; Magistretti, Pierre J

    2010-03-03

    Amyloid-beta (Abeta) peptides play a key role in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease and exert various toxic effects on neurons; however, relatively little is known about their influence on glial cells. Astrocytes play a pivotal role in brain homeostasis, contributing to the regulation of local energy metabolism and oxidative stress defense, two aspects of importance for neuronal viability and function. In the present study, we explored the effects of Abeta peptides on glucose metabolism in cultured astrocytes. Following Abeta(25-35) exposure, we observed an increase in glucose uptake and its various metabolic fates, i.e., glycolysis (coupled to lactate release), tricarboxylic acid cycle, pentose phosphate pathway, and incorporation into glycogen. Abeta increased hydrogen peroxide production as well as glutathione release into the extracellular space without affecting intracellular glutathione content. A causal link between the effects of Abeta on glucose metabolism and its aggregation and internalization into astrocytes through binding to members of the class A scavenger receptor family could be demonstrated. Using astrocyte-neuron cocultures, we observed that the overall modifications of astrocyte metabolism induced by Abeta impair neuronal viability. The effects of the Abeta(25-35) fragment were reproduced by Abeta(1-42) but not by Abeta(1-40). Finally, the phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3-kinase) pathway appears to be crucial in these events since both the changes in glucose utilization and the decrease in neuronal viability are prevented by LY294002, a PI3-kinase inhibitor. This set of observations indicates that Abeta aggregation and internalization into astrocytes profoundly alter their metabolic phenotype with deleterious consequences for neuronal viability.

  2. Facial injections of pruritogens and algogens excite partly overlapping populations of primary and second-order trigeminal neurons in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akiyama, T; Carstens, M Iodi; Carstens, E

    2010-11-01

    Intradermal cheek injection of pruitogens or algogens differentially elicits hindlimb scratching or forelimb wiping, suggesting that these behaviors distinguish between itch and pain. We studied whether pruritogens and algogens excite separate or overlapping populations of primary afferent and second-order trigeminal neurons in mice. Calcium imaging of primary sensory trigeminal ganglion (TG) cells showed that 15.4% responded to histamine, 5.8% to the protease-activated receptor (PAR)-2 agonist, 13.4% to allyl isothiocyanate (AITC), and 36.7% to capsaicin. AITC and/or capsaicin activated the vast majority of histamine- and PAR-2 agonist-sensitive TG cells. A chemical search strategy identified second-order neurons in trigeminal subnucleus caudalis (Vc) responsive to histamine, the PAR-2 agonist, or AITC. A minority of histamine or PAR-2 agonist-responsive Vc neurons responded to the other pruritogen, whereas a large majority of puritogen-responsive Vc neurons responded to capsaicin and/or AITC. A minority of AITC-responsive Vc neurons responded to pruritogens, whereas most responded to capsaicin. These data indicate that most primary and higher-order trigeminal sensory neurons are activated by both pruritic and algesic stimuli, although a minority exhibit selectivity. The results are discussed in terms of population codes for itch and pain that result in distinct behavioral responses of hindlimb scratching and forelimb wiping that are mediated at lumbar and cervical segmental levels, respectively.

  3. Sex Differences in Medium Spiny Neuron Excitability and Glutamatergic Synaptic Input: Heterogeneity Across Striatal Regions and Evidence for Estradiol-Dependent Sexual Differentiation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jinyan Cao

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Steroid sex hormones and biological sex influence how the brain regulates motivated behavior, reward, and sensorimotor function in both normal and pathological contexts. Investigations into the underlying neural mechanisms have targeted the striatal brain regions, including the caudate–putamen, nucleus accumbens core (AcbC, and shell. These brain regions are of particular interest to neuroendocrinologists given that they express membrane-associated but not nuclear estrogen receptors, and also the well-established role of the sex steroid hormone 17β-estradiol (estradiol in modulating striatal dopamine systems. Indeed, output neurons of the striatum, the medium spiny neurons (MSNs, exhibit estradiol sensitivity and sex differences in electrophysiological properties. Here, we review sex differences in rat MSN glutamatergic synaptic input and intrinsic excitability across striatal regions, including evidence for estradiol-mediated sexual differentiation in the nucleus AcbC. In prepubertal animals, female MSNs in the caudate–putamen exhibit a greater intrinsic excitability relative to male MSNs, but no sex differences are detected in excitatory synaptic input. Alternatively, female MSNs in the nucleus AcbC exhibit increased excitatory synaptic input relative to male MSNs, but no sex differences in intrinsic excitability were detected. Increased excitatory synaptic input onto female MSNs in the nucleus AcbC is abolished after masculinizing estradiol or testosterone exposure during the neonatal critical period. No sex differences are detected in MSNs in prepubertal nucleus accumbens shell. Thus, despite possessing the same neuron type, striatal regions exhibit heterogeneity in sex differences in MSN electrophysiological properties, which likely contribute to the sex differences observed in striatal function.

  4. Estradiol increases the sensitivity of ventral tegmental area dopamine neurons to dopamine and ethanol.

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    Bertha J Vandegrift

    Full Text Available Gender differences in psychiatric disorders such as addiction may be modulated by the steroid hormone estrogen. For instance, 17β-estradiol (E2, the predominant form of circulating estrogen in pre-menopausal females, increases ethanol consumption, suggesting that E2 may affect the rewarding properties of ethanol and thus the development of alcohol use disorder in females. The ventral tegmental area (VTA is critically involved in the rewarding and reinforcing effects of ethanol. In order to determine the role of E2 in VTA physiology, gonadally intact female mice were sacrificed during diestrus II (high E2 or estrus (low E2 for electrophysiology recordings. We measured the excitation by ethanol and inhibition by dopamine (DA of VTA DA neurons and found that both excitation by ethanol and inhibition by dopamine were greater in diestrus II compared with estrus. Treatment of VTA slices from mice in diestrus II with an estrogen receptor antagonist (ICI 182,780 reduced ethanol-stimulated neuronal firing, but had no effect on ethanol-stimulated firing of neurons in slices from mice in estrus. Surprisingly, ICI 182,780 did not affect the inhibition by DA, indicating different mechanisms of action of estrogen receptors in altering ethanol and DA responses. We also examined the responses of VTA DA neurons to ethanol and DA in ovariectomized mice treated with E2 and found that E2 treatment enhanced the responses to ethanol and DA in a manner similar to what we observed in mice in diestrus II. Our data indicate that E2 modulates VTA neuron physiology, which may contribute to both the enhanced reinforcing and rewarding effects of alcohol and the development of other psychiatric disorders in females that involve alterations in DA neurotransmission.

  5. Anabolic steroids alter the physiological activity of aggression circuits in the lateral anterior hypothalamus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morrison, T R; Sikes, R W; Melloni, R H

    2016-02-19

    Syrian hamsters exposed to anabolic/androgenic steroids (AAS) during adolescence consistently show increased aggressive behavior across studies. Although the behavioral and anatomical profiles of AAS-induced alterations have been well characterized, there is a lack of data describing physiological changes that accompany these alterations. For instance, behavioral pharmacology and neuroanatomical studies show that AAS-induced changes in the vasopressin (AVP) neural system within the latero-anterior hypothalamus (LAH) interact with the serotonin (5HT) and dopamine (DA) systems to modulate aggression. To characterize the electrophysiological profile of the AAS aggression circuit, we recorded LAH neurons in adolescent male hamsters in vivo and microiontophoretically applied agonists and antagonists of aggressive behavior. The interspike interval (ISI) of neurons from AAS-treated animals correlated positively with aggressive behaviors, and adolescent AAS exposure altered parameters of activity in regular firing neurons while also changing the proportion of neuron types (i.e., bursting, regular, irregular). AAS-treated animals had more responsive neurons that were excited by AVP application, while cells from control animals showed the opposite effect and were predominantly inhibited by AVP. Both DA D2 antagonists and 5HT increased the firing frequency of AVP-responsive cells from AAS animals and dual application of AVP and D2 antagonists doubled the excitatory effect of AVP or D2 antagonist administration alone. These data suggest that multiple DA circuits in the LAH modulate AAS-induced aggressive responding. More broadly, these data show that multiple neurochemical interactions at the neurophysiological level are altered by adolescent AAS exposure. Copyright © 2015 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Activation of type-1 cannabinoid receptor shifts the balance between excitation and inhibition towards excitation in layer II/III pyramidal neurons of the rat prelimbic cortex

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    den Boon, F.S.; Werkman, T.R.; Schaafsma-Zhao, Q.; Houthuijs, K.; Vitalis, T.; Kruse, C.G.; Wadman, W.J.; Chameau, P.

    2015-01-01

    Activation of the endocannabinoid (eCB) system by exogenous cannabinoids (drug abuse) can alter the physiology of the brain circuits involved in higher-order cognitive functions such as the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). A proper balance between excitation and inhibition (E/I balance) is critical

  7. Proton- and ammonium- sensing by histaminergic neurons controlling wakefulness.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yvgenij eYanovsky

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Orexinergic and histaminergic neurons in the posterior hypothalamus are involved in the control of arousal. Extracellular levels of acid /CO2 are fundamental physicochemical signals controlling wakefulness and breathing. Acidification excites orexinergic neurons like the chemosensory neurons in the brain stem. Hypercapnia induces c-Fos expression, a marker for increased neuronal activity, in the rat histaminergic tuberomamillary nucleus (TMN, but the mechanisms of this excitation are unknown. Acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs are gated by protons and also by ammonium. Recordings in rat brain slices revealed now that acidification within the physiological range (pH from 7.3 to 7.0 as well as ammonium chloride (5mM excite histaminergic neurons. We detected variable combinations of 4 known types of ASICs in single TMN neurons, along with the pharmacological properties of pH-induced current. At pH 7.0 however, activation of ASICs in TMN neurons was negligible. Block of type I metabotropic glutamate receptors abolished proton- but not ammonium- induced excitation. Mouse TMN neurons were identified within a novel HDC-Cre transgenic reporter mouse line. In contrast to the rat these lacked pH 7.0-induced excitation and showed only a minimal response to the mGluR I agonist DHPG (0.5µM. Ammonium-induced excitation was similar in mouse and rat. Thus glutamate, which is released by glial cells and orexinergic axons amplifies CO2/acid-induced arousal through the recruitment of the histaminergic system in rat but not in mouse. These results are relevant for the understanding of neuronal mechanisms controlling H+/CO2-induced arousal in hepatic encephalopathy and obstructive sleep apnoea. The new HDC-Cre mouse model will be a useful tool for studying the physiological and pathophysiological roles of the histaminergic system.

  8. Octopamine increases the excitability of neurons in the snail feeding system by modulation of inward sodium current but not outward potassium currents

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    Szabó Henriette

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Although octopamine has long been known to have major roles as both transmitter and modulator in arthropods, it has only recently been shown to be functionally important in molluscs, playing a role as a neurotransmitter in the feeding network of the snail Lymnaea stagnalis. The synaptic potentials cannot explain all the effects of octopamine-containing neurons on the feeding network, and here we test the hypothesis that octopamine is also a neuromodulator. Results The excitability of the B1 and B4 motoneurons in the buccal ganglia to depolarising current clamp pulses is significantly (P IA current and a sustained IK delayed-rectifier current, but neither was modulated by octopamine in any of these three buccal neurons. The fast inward current was eliminated in sodium – free saline and so is likely to be carried by sodium ions. 10 μM octopamine enhanced this current by 33 and 45% in the B1 and B4 motoneurons respectively (P Conclusion We conclude that octopamine is also a neuromodulator in snails, changing the excitability of the buccal neurons. This is supported by the close relationship from the voltage clamp data, through the quantitative simulation, to the action potential threshold, changing the properties of neurons in a rhythmic network. The increase in inward sodium current provides an explanation for the polycyclic modulation of the feeding system by the octopamine-containing interneurons, making feeding easier to initiate and making the feeding bursts more intense.

  9. Gad1 mRNA as a reliable indicator of altered GABA release from orexigenic neurons in the hypothalamus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dicken, Matthew S; Hughes, Alexander R; Hentges, Shane T

    2015-11-01

    The strength of γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)-mediated inhibitory synaptic input is a principle determinant of neuronal activity. However, because of differences in the number of GABA afferent inputs and the sites of synapses, it is difficult to directly assay for altered GABA transmission between specific cells. The present study tested the hypothesis that the level of mRNA for the GABA synthetic enzyme glutamate decarboxylase (GAD) can provide a reliable proxy for GABA release. This was tested in a mouse hypothalamic circuit important in the regulation of energy balance. Fluorescent in situ hybridization results show that the expression of Gad1 mRNA (encoding the GAD67 enzyme) was increased in hypothalamic neuropeptide Y/agouti-related peptide (NPY/AgRP) neurons after an overnight fast, consistent with the ability of GABA from these neurons to stimulate food intake. Optogenetic studies confirmed that the observed increase in Gad1 mRNA correlated with an increase in the probability of GABA release from NPY/AgRP neurons onto downstream proopiomelanocortin neurons. Likewise, there was an increase in the readily releasable pool of GABA in NPY/AgRP neurons. Selective inhibition of GAD activity in NPY/AgRP neurons decreased GABA release, indicating that GAD67 activity, which is largely dictated by expression level, is a key determinant of GABA release. Altogether, it appears that Gad expression may be a reliable proxy of altered GABAergic transmission. Examining changes in Gad mRNA as a proxy for GABA release may be particularly helpful when the downstream targets are not known or when limited tools exist for detecting GABA release at a particular synapse. © 2015 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. Increased transient Na+ conductance and action potential output in layer 2/3 prefrontal cortex neurons of the fmr1-/y mouse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Routh, Brandy N; Rathour, Rahul K; Baumgardner, Michael E; Kalmbach, Brian E; Johnston, Daniel; Brager, Darrin H

    2017-07-01

    Layer 2/3 neurons of the prefrontal cortex display higher gain of somatic excitability, responding with a higher number of action potentials for a given stimulus, in fmr1 -/y mice. In fmr1 -/y L2/3 neurons, action potentials are taller, faster and narrower. Outside-out patch clamp recordings revealed that the maximum Na + conductance density is higher in fmr1 -/y L2/3 neurons. Measurements of three biophysically distinct K + currents revealed a depolarizing shift in the activation of a rapidly inactivating (A-type) K + conductance. Realistic neuronal simulations of the biophysical observations recapitulated the elevated action potential and repetitive firing phenotype. Fragile X syndrome is the most common form of inherited mental impairment and autism. The prefrontal cortex is responsible for higher order cognitive processing, and prefrontal dysfunction is believed to underlie many of the cognitive and behavioural phenotypes associated with fragile X syndrome. We recently demonstrated that somatic and dendritic excitability of layer (L) 5 pyramidal neurons in the prefrontal cortex of the fmr1 -/y mouse is significantly altered due to changes in several voltage-gated ion channels. In addition to L5 pyramidal neurons, L2/3 pyramidal neurons play an important role in prefrontal circuitry, integrating inputs from both lower brain regions and the contralateral cortex. Using whole-cell current clamp recording, we found that L2/3 pyramidal neurons in prefrontal cortex of fmr1 -/y mouse fired more action potentials for a given stimulus compared with wild-type neurons. In addition, action potentials in fmr1 -/y neurons were significantly larger, faster and narrower. Voltage clamp of outside-out patches from L2/3 neurons revealed that the transient Na + current was significantly larger in fmr1 -/y neurons. Furthermore, the activation curve of somatic A-type K + current was depolarized. Realistic conductance-based simulations revealed that these biophysical changes in Na

  11. Ethanol modulation of mammalian BK channels in excitable tissues: molecular targets and their possible contribution to alcohol-induced altered behavior

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alex M. Dopico

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available In most tissues, the function of calcium- and voltage-gated potassium (BK channels is modified in response to ethanol concentrations reached in human blood during alcohol intoxication. In general, modification of BK current from ethanol-naïve preparations in response to brief ethanol exposure results from changes in channel open probability without modification of unitary conductance or change in BK protein levels in the membrane. Protracted and/or repeated ethanol exposure, however, may evoke changes in BK expression. The final ethanol effect on BK open probability leading to either BK current potentiation or BK current reduction is determined by an orchestration of molecular factors, including levels of activating ligand (cytosolic calcium, BK subunit composition and posttranslational modifications, and the channel’s lipid microenvironment. These factors seem to allosterically regulate a direct interaction between ethanol and a recognition pocket of discrete dimensions recently mapped to the channel-forming (slo1 subunit. Type of ethanol exposure also plays a role in the final BK response to the drug: in several central nervous system regions (e.g., striatum, primary sensory neurons, and supraoptic nucleus, acute exposure to ethanol reduces neuronal excitability by enhancing BK activity. In contrast, protracted or repetitive ethanol administration may alter BK subunit composition and membrane expression, rendering the BK complex insensitive to further ethanol exposure. In neurohypophysial axon terminals, ethanol potentiation of BK channel activity leads to a reduction in neuropeptide release. In vascular smooth muscle, however, ethanol inhibition of BK current leads to cell contraction and vascular constriction.

  12. Nanomolar bifenthrin alters synchronous Ca2+ oscillations and cortical neuron development independent of sodium channel activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Zhengyu; Cui, Yanjun; Nguyen, Hai M; Jenkins, David Paul; Wulff, Heike; Pessah, Isaac N

    2014-04-01

    Bifenthrin, a relatively stable type I pyrethroid that causes tremors and impairs motor activity in rodents, is broadly used. We investigated whether nanomolar bifenthrin alters synchronous Ca(2+) oscillations (SCOs) necessary for activity-dependent dendritic development. Primary mouse cortical neurons were cultured 8 or 9 days in vitro (DIV), loaded with the Ca(2+) indicator Fluo-4, and imaged using a Fluorescence Imaging Plate Reader Tetra. Acute exposure to bifenthrin rapidly increased the frequency of SCOs by 2.7-fold (EC50 = 58 nM) and decreased SCO amplitude by 36%. Changes in SCO properties were independent of modifications in voltage-gated sodium channels since 100 nM bifenthrin had no effect on the whole-cell Na(+) current, nor did it influence neuronal resting membrane potential. The L-type Ca(2+) channel blocker nifedipine failed to ameliorate bifenthrin-triggered SCO activity. By contrast, the metabotropic glutamate receptor (mGluR)5 antagonist MPEP [2-methyl-6-(phenylethynyl)pyridine] normalized bifenthrin-triggered increase in SCO frequency without altering baseline SCO activity, indicating that bifenthrin amplifies mGluR5 signaling independent of Na(+) channel modification. Competitive [AP-5; (-)-2-amino-5-phosphonopentanoic acid] and noncompetitive (dizocilpine, or MK-801 [(5S,10R)-(+)-5-methyl-10,11-dihydro-5H-dibenzo[a,d]cyclohepten-5,10-imine maleate]) N-methyl-d-aspartate antagonists partially decreased both basal and bifenthrin-triggered SCO frequency increase. Bifenthrin-modified SCO rapidly enhanced the phosphorylation of cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB). Subacute (48 hours) exposure to bifenthrin commencing 2 DIV-enhanced neurite outgrowth and persistently increased SCO frequency and reduced SCO amplitude. Bifenthrin-stimulated neurite outgrowth and CREB phosphorylation were dependent on mGluR5 activity since MPEP normalized both responses. Collectively these data identify a new mechanism by which bifenthrin potently alters Ca(2

  13. GABAB-receptor activation alters the firing pattern of dopamine neurons in the rat substantia nigra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engberg, G; Kling-Petersen, T; Nissbrandt, H

    1993-11-01

    Previous electrophysiological experiments have emphasized the importance of the firing pattern for the functioning of midbrain dopamine (DA) neurons. In this regard, excitatory amino acid receptors appear to constitute an important modulatory control mechanism. In the present study, extracellular recording techniques were used to investigate the significance of GABAB-receptor activation for the firing properties of DA neurons in the substantia nigra (SN) in the rat. Intravenous administration of the GABAB-receptor agonist baclofen (1-16 mg/kg) was associated with a dose-dependent regularization of the firing pattern, concomitant with a reduction in burst firing. At higher doses (16-32 mg/kg), the firing rate of the DA neurons was dose-dependently decreased. Also, microiontophoretic application of baclofen regularized the firing pattern of nigral DA neurons, including a reduction of burst firing. Both the regularization of the firing pattern and inhibition of firing rate produced by systemic baclofen administration was antagonized by the GABAB-receptor antagonist CGP 35348 (200 mg/kg, i.v.). The GABAA-receptor agonist muscimol produced effects on the firing properties of DA neurons that were opposite to those observed following baclofen, i.e., an increase in firing rate accompanied by a decreased regularity. The NMDA receptor antagonist MK 801 (0.4-3.2 mg/kg, i.v.) produced a moderate, dose-dependent increase in the firing rate of the nigral DA neurons as well as a slightly regularized firing pattern. Pretreatment with MK 801 (3.2 mg/kg, i.v., 3-10 min) did neither promote nor prevent the regularization of the firing pattern or inhibition of firing rate on the nigral DA neurons produced by baclofen. The present results clearly show that GABAB-receptors can alter the firing pattern of nigral DA neurons, hereby counterbalancing the previously described ability of glutamate to induce burst firing activity on these neurons.

  14. Neuronal Cell Death Induced by Mechanical Percussion Trauma in Cultured Neurons is not Preceded by Alterations in Glucose, Lactate and Glutamine Metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayakumar, A R; Bak, L K; Rama Rao, K V; Waagepetersen, H S; Schousboe, A; Norenberg, M D

    2016-02-01

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a devastating neurological disorder that usually presents in acute and chronic forms. Brain edema and associated increased intracranial pressure in the early phase following TBI are major consequences of acute trauma. On the other hand, neuronal injury, leading to neurobehavioral and cognitive impairments, that usually develop months to years after single or repetitive episodes of head trauma, are major consequences of chronic TBI. The molecular mechanisms responsible for TBI-induced injury, however, are unclear. Recent studies have suggested that early mitochondrial dysfunction and subsequent energy failure play a role in the pathogenesis of TBI. We therefore examined whether oxidative metabolism of (13)C-labeled glucose, lactate or glutamine is altered early following in vitro mechanical percussion-induced trauma (5 atm) to neurons (4-24 h), and whether such events contribute to the development of neuronal injury. Cell viability was assayed using the release of the cytoplasmic enzyme lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), together with fluorescence-based cell staining (calcein and ethidium homodimer-1 for live and dead cells, respectively). Trauma had no effect on the LDH release in neurons from 1 to 18 h. However, a significant increase in LDH release was detected at 24 h after trauma. Similar findings were identified when traumatized neurons were stained with fluorescent markers. Additionally (13)C-labeling of glutamate showed a small, but statistically significant decrease at 14 h after trauma. However, trauma had no effect on the cycling ratio of the TCA cycle at any time-period examined. These findings indicate that trauma does not cause a disturbance in oxidative metabolism of any of the substrates used for neurons. Accordingly, such metabolic disturbance does not appear to contribute to the neuronal death in the early stages following trauma.

  15. THC alters alters morphology of neurons in medial prefrontal cortex, orbital prefrontal cortex, and nucleus accumbens and alters the ability of later experience to promote structural plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolb, Bryan; Li, Yilin; Robinson, Terry; Parker, Linda A

    2018-03-01

    Psychoactive drugs have the ability to alter the morphology of neuronal dendrites and spines and to influence later experience-dependent structural plasticity. If rats are given repeated injections of psychomotor stimulants (amphetamine, cocaine, nicotine) prior to being placed in complex environments, the drug experience interferes with the ability of the environment to increase dendritic arborization and spine density. Repeated exposure to Delta 9-Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) changes the morphology of dendrites in medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) and nucleus accumbens (NAcc). To determine if drugs other than psychomotor stimulants will also interfere with later experience-dependent structural plasticity we gave Long-Evans rats THC (0.5 mg/kg) or saline for 11 days before placing them in complex environments or standard laboratory caging for 90 days. Brains were subsequently processed for Golgi-Cox staining and analysis of dendritic morphology and spine density mPFC, orbital frontal cortex (OFC), and NAcc. THC altered both dendritic arborization and spine density in all three regions, and, like psychomotor stimulants, THC influenced the effect of later experience in complex environments to shape the structure of neurons in these three regions. We conclude that THC may therefore contribute to persistent behavioral and cognitive deficits associated with prolonged use of the drug. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. Altered synaptic phospholipid signaling in PRG-1 deficient mice induces exploratory behavior and motor hyperactivity resembling psychiatric disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, Patrick; Petzold, Sandra; Sommer, Angela; Nitsch, Robert; Schwegler, Herbert; Vogt, Johannes; Roskoden, Thomas

    2018-01-15

    Plasticity related gene 1 (PRG-1) is a neuron specific membrane protein located at the postsynaptic density of glutamatergic synapses. PRG-1 modulates signaling pathways of phosphorylated lipid substrates such as lysophosphatidic acid (LPA). Deletion of PRG-1 increases presynaptic glutamate release probability leading to neuronal over-excitation. However, due to its cortical expression, PRG-1 deficiency leading to increased glutamatergic transmission is supposed to also affect motor pathways. We therefore analyzed the effects of PRG-1 function on exploratory and motor behavior using homozygous PRG-1 knockout (PRG-1 -/- ) mice and PRG-1/LPA 2 -receptor double knockout (PRG-1 -/- /LPA 2 -/- ) mice in two open field settings of different size and assessing motor behavior in the Rota Rod test. PRG-1 -/- mice displayed significantly longer path lengths and higher running speed in both open field conditions. In addition, PRG-1 -/- mice spent significantly longer time in the larger open field and displayed rearing and self-grooming behavior. Furthermore PRG-1 -/- mice displayed stereotypical behavior resembling phenotypes of psychiatric disorders in the smaller sized open field arena. Altogether, this behavior is similar to the stereotypical behavior observed in animal models for psychiatric disease of autistic spectrum disorders which reflects a disrupted balance between glutamatergic and GABAergic synapses. These differences indicate an altered excitation/inhibition balance in neuronal circuits in PRG-1 -/- mice as recently shown in the somatosensory cortex [38]. In contrast, PRG-1 -/- /LPA 2 -/- did not show significant changes in behavior in the open field suggesting that these specific alterations were abolished when the LPA 2 -receptor was lacking. Our findings indicate that PRG-1 deficiency led to over-excitability caused by an altered LPA/LPA 2 -R signaling inducing a behavioral phenotype typically observed in animal models for psychiatric disorders. Copyright

  17. In vitro research of the alteration of neurons in vagal core in medulla oblongata at asphyxic deaths.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haliti, Naim; Islami, Hilmi; Elezi, Nevzat; Shabani, Ragip; Abdullahu, Bedri; Dragusha, Gani

    2010-08-01

    The aim of this study was to research the morphological changes of neurons in the vagus nerve nuclei in medulla oblongata in asphyxia related death cases. Morphological changes that were investigated were mainly in the dorsal motor respiratory center (DMRC), nucleus tractus solitarius (nTS) and nucleus ambigus (nA) in the medulla oblongata. In our research, the autopsy material from asphyxia related death cases was used from various etiologies: monoxide carbon (CO), liquid drowning, strangulation, electricity, clinical-pathological death, firing weapon, explosive weapon, sharp and blunt objects and death cases due to accident. The material selected for research was taken from medulla oblongata and lungs from all lobes. The material from the medulla oblongata and lungs was fixed in a 10% solution of buffered formalin. Special histochemical methods for central nervous system (CNS) were employed like: Cresyl echt violet, toluidin blue, Sevier-Munger modification and Grimelius. For stereometrical analysis of the quantitative density of the neurons the universal testing system Weibel M42 was used. The acquired results show that in sudden asphyxia related death cases, there are alterations in the nuclei of vagal nerve in form of: central chromatolysis, axonal retraction, axonal fragmentation, intranuclear vacuolization, cytoplasmic vacuolization, edema, condensation and dispersion of substance of Nissl, proliferation of oligodendrocytes, astrocytes and microglia. The altered population of vagus nerve neurons does not show an important statistical significance compared to the overall quantity of the neurons in the nuclei of the vagus nerve (p<0.05).

  18. Conotoxins Targeting Neuronal Voltage-Gated Sodium Channel Subtypes: Potential Analgesics?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeffrey R. McArthur

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Voltage-gated sodium channels (VGSC are the primary mediators of electrical signal amplification and propagation in excitable cells. VGSC subtypes are diverse, with different biophysical and pharmacological properties, and varied tissue distribution. Altered VGSC expression and/or increased VGSC activity in sensory neurons is characteristic of inflammatory and neuropathic pain states. Therefore, VGSC modulators could be used in prospective analgesic compounds. VGSCs have specific binding sites for four conotoxin families: μ-, μO-, δ- and ί-conotoxins. Various studies have identified that the binding site of these peptide toxins is restricted to well-defined areas or domains. To date, only the μ- and μO-family exhibit analgesic properties in animal pain models. This review will focus on conotoxins from the μ- and μO-families that act on neuronal VGSCs. Examples of how these conotoxins target various pharmacologically important neuronal ion channels, as well as potential problems with the development of drugs from conotoxins, will be discussed.

  19. Overexpression of Dyrk1A, a Down Syndrome Candidate, Decreases Excitability and Impairs Gamma Oscillations in the Prefrontal Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruiz-Mejias, Marcel; Martinez de Lagran, Maria; Mattia, Maurizio; Castano-Prat, Patricia; Perez-Mendez, Lorena; Ciria-Suarez, Laura; Gener, Thomas; Sancristobal, Belen; García-Ojalvo, Jordi; Gruart, Agnès; Delgado-García, José M; Sanchez-Vives, Maria V; Dierssen, Mara

    2016-03-30

    The dual-specificity tyrosine phosphorylation-regulated kinase DYRK1A is a serine/threonine kinase involved in neuronal differentiation and synaptic plasticity and a major candidate of Down syndrome brain alterations and cognitive deficits. DYRK1A is strongly expressed in the cerebral cortex, and its overexpression leads to defective cortical pyramidal cell morphology, synaptic plasticity deficits, and altered excitation/inhibition balance. These previous observations, however, do not allow predicting how the behavior of the prefrontal cortex (PFC) network and the resulting properties of its emergent activity are affected. Here, we integrate functional, anatomical, and computational data describing the prefrontal network alterations in transgenic mice overexpressingDyrk1A(TgDyrk1A). Usingin vivoextracellular recordings, we show decreased firing rate and gamma frequency power in the prefrontal network of anesthetized and awakeTgDyrk1Amice. Immunohistochemical analysis identified a selective reduction of vesicular GABA transporter punctae on parvalbumin positive neurons, without changes in the number of cortical GABAergic neurons in the PFC ofTgDyrk1Amice, which suggests that selective disinhibition of parvalbumin interneurons would result in an overinhibited functional network. Using a conductance-based computational model, we quantitatively demonstrate that this alteration could explain the observed functional deficits including decreased gamma power and firing rate. Our results suggest that dysfunction of cortical fast-spiking interneurons might be central to the pathophysiology of Down syndrome. DYRK1Ais a major candidate gene in Down syndrome. Its overexpression results into altered cognitive abilities, explained by defective cortical microarchitecture and excitation/inhibition imbalance. An open question is how these deficits impact the functionality of the prefrontal cortex network. Combining functional, anatomical, and computational approaches, we identified

  20. Val66Met polymorphism of BDNF alters prodomain structure to induce neuronal growth cone retraction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anastasia, Agustin; Deinhardt, Katrin; Chao, Moses V; Will, Nathan E; Irmady, Krithi; Lee, Francis S; Hempstead, Barbara L; Bracken, Clay

    2013-01-01

    A common single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in the human brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) gene results in a Val66Met substitution in the BDNF prodomain region. This SNP is associated with alterations in memory and with enhanced risk to develop depression and anxiety disorders in humans. Here we show that the isolated BDNF prodomain is detected in the hippocampus and that it can be secreted from neurons in an activity-dependent manner. Using nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy and circular dichroism, we find that the prodomain is intrinsically disordered, and the Val66Met substitution induces structural changes. Surprisingly, application of Met66 (but not Val66) BDNF prodomain induces acute growth cone retraction and a decrease in Rac activity in hippocampal neurons. Expression of p75(NTR) and differential engagement of the Met66 prodomain to the SorCS2 receptor are required for this effect. These results identify the Met66 prodomain as a new active ligand, which modulates neuronal morphology.

  1. Odor-evoked inhibition of olfactory sensory neurons drives olfactory perception in Drosophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Li-Hui; Yang, Dong; Wu, Wei; Zeng, Xiankun; Jing, Bi-Yang; Li, Meng-Tong; Qin, Shanshan; Tang, Chao; Tu, Yuhai; Luo, Dong-Gen

    2017-11-07

    Inhibitory response occurs throughout the nervous system, including the peripheral olfactory system. While odor-evoked excitation in peripheral olfactory cells is known to encode odor information, the molecular mechanism and functional roles of odor-evoked inhibition remain largely unknown. Here, we examined Drosophila olfactory sensory neurons and found that inhibitory odors triggered outward receptor currents by reducing the constitutive activities of odorant receptors, inhibiting the basal spike firing in olfactory sensory neurons. Remarkably, this odor-evoked inhibition of olfactory sensory neurons elicited by itself a full range of olfactory behaviors from attraction to avoidance, as did odor-evoked olfactory sensory neuron excitation. These results indicated that peripheral inhibition is comparable to excitation in encoding sensory signals rather than merely regulating excitation. Furthermore, we demonstrated that a bidirectional code with both odor-evoked inhibition and excitation in single olfactory sensory neurons increases the odor-coding capacity, providing a means of efficient sensory encoding.

  2. In Vitro Research of the Alteration of Neurons in Vagal Core in Medulla Oblongata at Asphyxic Deaths

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naim Haliti

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to research the morphological changes of neurons in the vagus nerve nuclei in medulla oblongata in asphyxia related death cases. Morphological changes that were investigated were mainly in the dorsal motor respiratory center (DMRC, nucleus tractus solitarius (nTS and nucleus ambigus (nA in the medulla oblongata. In our research, the autopsy material from asphyxia related death cases was used from various etiologies: monoxide carbon (CO, liquid drowning, strangulation, electricity, clinical-pathological death, firing weapon, explosive weapon, sharp and blunt objects and death cases due to accident. The material selected for research was taken from medulla oblongata and lungs from all lobes. The material from the medulla oblongata and lungs was fixed in a 10% solution of buffered formalin. Special histochemical methods for central nervous system (CNS were employed like: Cresyl echt violet, toluidin blue, Sevier-Munger modification and Grimelius. For stereometrical analysis of the quantitative density of the neurons the universal testing system Weibel M42 was used. The acquired results show that in sudden asphyxia related death cases, there are alterations in the nuclei of vagal nerve in form of: central chromatolysis, axonal retraction, axonal fragmentation, intranuclear vacuolization, cytoplasmic vacuolization, edema, condensation and dispersion of substance of Nissl, proliferation of oligodendrocytes, astrocytes and microglia. The altered population of vagus nerve neurons does not show an important statistica! significarne compared to the overall quantity of the neurons in the nuclei of the vagus nerve (p<0,05.

  3. Change in excitability of a putative decision-making neuron in Aplysia serves as a mechanism in the decision not to feed following food satiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dickinson, Kathy J; Wainwright, Marcy L; Mozzachiodi, Riccardo

    2015-03-15

    Although decision making is a ubiquitous function, the understanding of its underlying mechanisms remains limited, particularly at the single-cell level. In this study, we used the decision not to feed that follows satiation in the marine mollusk Aplysia to examine the role of putative decision-making neuron B51 in this process. B51 is a neuron in the feeding neural circuit that exhibits decision-making characteristics in vitro, which bias the circuit toward producing the motor programs responsible for biting behavior. Once satiated, Aplysia decided not to bite for a prolonged period of time (≥24h) when presented with a food stimulus that normally elicits feeding in non-satiated animals. Twenty-four hours after satiation, suppressed feeding was accompanied by a significant decrease of B51 excitability compared to the control group of unfed animals. No differences were measured in B51 resting membrane properties or synaptic input to B51 between the satiated and control groups. When B51 properties were measured at a time point in which feeding had recovered from the suppressive effects of satiation (i.e., 96 h after satiation), no difference in B51 excitability was observed between satiated and control groups. These findings indicate that B51 excitability changes in a manner that is coherent with the modifications in biting resulting from food satiation, thus implicating this neuron as a site of plasticity underlying the decision not to bite following food satiation in Aplysia. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Nicotine inhibits potassium currents in Aplysia bag cell neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, Sean H.; Sturgeon, Raymond M.

    2016-01-01

    Acetylcholine and the archetypal cholinergic agonist, nicotine, are typically associated with the opening of ionotropic receptors. In the bag cell neurons, which govern the reproductive behavior of the marine snail, Aplysia californica, there are two cholinergic responses: a relatively large acetylcholine-induced current and a relatively small nicotine-induced current. Both currents are readily apparent at resting membrane potential and result from the opening of distinct ionotropic receptors. We now report a separate current response elicited by applying nicotine to cultured bag cell neurons under whole cell voltage-clamp. This current was ostensibly inward, best resolved at depolarized voltages, presented a noncooperative dose-response with a half-maximal concentration near 1.5 mM, and associated with a decrease in membrane conductance. The unique nicotine-evoked response was not altered by intracellular perfusion with the G protein blocker GDPβS or exposure to classical nicotinic antagonists but was occluded by replacing intracellular K+ with Cs+. Consistent with an underlying mechanism of direct inhibition of one or more K+ channels, nicotine was found to rapidly reduce the fast-inactivating A-type K+ current as well as both components of the delayed-rectifier K+ current. Finally, nicotine increased bag cell neuron excitability, which manifested as reduction in spike threshold, greater action potential height and width, and markedly more spiking to continuous depolarizing current injection. In contrast to conventional transient activation of nicotinic ionotropic receptors, block of K+ channels could represent a nonstandard means for nicotine to profoundly alter the electrical properties of neurons over prolonged periods of time. PMID:26864763

  5. The effect of Bobath approach on the excitability of the spinal alpha motor neurones in stroke patients with muscle spasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ansari, N N; Naghdi, S

    2007-01-01

    A clinical study was performed to evaluate the efficacy of the Bobath approach on the excitability of the spinal alpha motor neurones in patients with poststroke spasticity. Ten subjects ranging in age from 37 through 76 years (average 60 years) with ankle plantarflexor spasticity secondary to a stroke were recruited and completed the trial. They had physiotherapy according to Bobath concept for ten treatment sessions, three days per week. Two repeated measures, one before and another after treatment, were taken to quantify clinical efficacy. The effect of this type of therapy on the excitability of alpha motor neurones (aMN) was assessed by measuring the latency of the Hoffmann reflex (H-reflex) and the Hmax/Mmax ratio. The original Ashworth scale and ankle range of motion were also measured. The mean HmaxlMmax ratio on the affected side at baseline was high in the study patients. However, there were no statistically significant differences in the HmaxlMmax ratio or in the H-reflex latency between the baseline values and those recorded after therapy intervention. Before treatment, the HmaxlMmax ratio was significantly higher in the affected side than in the unaffected side. However, it was similar at both sides after treatment. Following treatment, the significant reduction in spasticity was clinically detected as measured with the original Ashworth scale. The ankle joint active and passive range of motion was significantly increased. In conclusion, Bobath therapy had a statistically significant effect on the excitability of the aMN in the affected side compared to the unaffected side in stroke patients with muscle spasticity.

  6. Electrophysiological Features of Neurons in the Mesencephalic Trigeminal Nuclei

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jun-Ling Xing

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Mesencephalic trigeminal nucleus (Mes V neurons represent an uncommon class of primary sensory neurons. Besides receiving somatosensory information, Mes V neurons are also involved in regulating multisensory information. The present review first describes the passive features as well as three important currents, followed by a distinct excitability classification and a description of the excitability transition of Mes V neurons. Furthermore, their resonance property, the existence of membrane oscillation and electrical coupling which may promote strong synchronization, as well as their function in controlling stretch reflex activity, are discussed.

  7. Short-term increases in transient receptor potential vanilloid-1 mediate stress-induced enhancement of neuronal excitation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weitlauf, Carl; Ward, Nicholas J; Lambert, Wendi S; Sidorova, Tatiana N; Ho, Karen W; Sappington, Rebecca M; Calkins, David J

    2014-11-12

    Progression of neurodegeneration in disease and injury is influenced by the response of individual neurons to stressful stimuli and whether this response includes mechanisms to counter declining function. Transient receptor potential (TRP) cation channels transduce a variety of disease-relevant stimuli and can mediate diverse stress-dependent changes in physiology, both presynaptic and postsynaptic. Recently, we demonstrated that knock-out or pharmacological inhibition of the TRP vanilloid-1 (TRPV1) capsaicin-sensitive subunit accelerates degeneration of retinal ganglion cell neurons and their axons with elevated ocular pressure, the critical stressor in the most common optic neuropathy, glaucoma. Here we probed the mechanism of the influence of TRPV1 on ganglion cell survival in mouse models of glaucoma. We found that induced elevations of ocular pressure increased TRPV1 in ganglion cells and its colocalization at excitatory synapses to their dendrites, whereas chronic elevation progressively increased ganglion cell Trpv1 mRNA. Enhanced TRPV1 expression in ganglion cells was transient and supported a reversal of the effect of TRPV1 on ganglion cells from hyperpolarizing to depolarizing, which was also transient. Short-term enhancement of TRPV1-mediated activity led to a delayed increase in axonal spontaneous excitation that was absent in ganglion cells from Trpv1(-/-) retina. In isolated ganglion cells, pharmacologically activated TRPV1 mobilized to discrete nodes along ganglion cell dendrites that corresponded to sites of elevated Ca(2+). These results suggest that TRPV1 may promote retinal ganglion cell survival through transient enhancement of local excitation and axonal activity in response to ocular stress. Copyright © 2014 the authors 0270-6474/14/3415369-13$15.00/0.

  8. Vasoactive intestinal polypeptide excites medial pontine reticular formation neurons in the brainstem rapid eye movement sleep-induction zone

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kohlmeier, Kristi Anne; Reiner, P B

    1999-01-01

    Although it has long been known that microinjection of the cholinergic agonist carbachol into the medial pontine reticular formation (mPRF) induces a state that resembles rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, it is likely that other transmitters contribute to mPRF regulation of behavioral states. A key...... candidate is the peptide vasoactive intestinal polypeptide (VIP), which innervates the mPRF and induces REM sleep when injected into this region of the brainstem. To begin understanding the cellular mechanisms underlying this phenomenon, we examined the effects of VIP on mPRF cells using whole-cell patch...... conclude that VIP excites mPRF neurons by activation of a sodium current. This effect is mediated at least in part by G-protein stimulation of adenylyl cyclase, cAMP, and protein kinase A. These data suggest that VIP may play a physiological role in REM induction by its actions on mPRF neurons....

  9. Effect of different glucose supply conditions on neuronal energy metabolism

    OpenAIRE

    Zheng, Hongwen; Wang, Rubin; Qu, Jingyi

    2016-01-01

    The glucose-excited neurons in brain can sense blood glucose levels and reflect different firing states, which are mainly associated with regulation of blood glucose and energy demand in the brain. In this paper, a new model of glucose-excited neuron in hypothalamus is proposed. The firing properties and energy consumption of this type of neuron under conditions of different glucose levels are simulated and analyzed. The results show that the firing rate and firing duration of the neuron both...

  10. From Neurons to Brain: Adaptive Self-Wiring of Neurons

    OpenAIRE

    Segev, Ronen; Ben-Jacob, Eshel

    1998-01-01

    During embryonic morpho-genesis, a collection of individual neurons turns into a functioning network with unique capabilities. Only recently has this most staggering example of emergent process in the natural world, began to be studied. Here we propose a navigational strategy for neurites growth cones, based on sophisticated chemical signaling. We further propose that the embryonic environment (the neurons and the glia cells) acts as an excitable media in which concentric and spiral chemical ...

  11. Unmasking of spiral ganglion neuron firing dynamics by membrane potential and neurotrophin-3.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crozier, Robert A; Davis, Robin L

    2014-07-16

    Type I spiral ganglion neurons have a unique role relative to other sensory afferents because, as a single population, they must convey the richness, complexity, and precision of auditory information as they shape signals transmitted to the brain. To understand better the sophistication of spiral ganglion response properties, we compared somatic whole-cell current-clamp recordings from basal and apical neurons obtained during the first 2 postnatal weeks from CBA/CaJ mice. We found that during this developmental time period neuron response properties changed from uniformly excitable to differentially plastic. Low-frequency, apical and high-frequency basal neurons at postnatal day 1 (P1)-P3 were predominantly slowly accommodating (SA), firing at low thresholds with little alteration in accommodation response mode induced by changes in resting membrane potential (RMP) or added neurotrophin-3 (NT-3). In contrast, P10-P14 apical and basal neurons were predominately rapidly accommodating (RA), had higher firing thresholds, and responded to elevation of RMP and added NT-3 by transitioning to the SA category without affecting the instantaneous firing rate. Therefore, older neurons appeared to be uniformly less excitable under baseline conditions yet displayed a previously unrecognized capacity to change response modes dynamically within a remarkably stable accommodation framework. Because the soma is interposed in the signal conduction pathway, these specializations can potentially lead to shaping and filtering of the transmitted signal. These results suggest that spiral ganglion neurons possess electrophysiological mechanisms that enable them to adapt their response properties to the characteristics of incoming stimuli and thus have the capacity to encode a wide spectrum of auditory information. Copyright © 2014 the authors 0270-6474/14/349688-15$15.00/0.

  12. Enhanced activation of RVLM-projecting PVN neurons in rats with chronic heart failure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Bo; Zheng, Hong; Patel, Kaushik P

    2012-04-15

    Previous studies have indicated that there is increased activation of the paraventricular nucleus (PVN) in rats with chronic heart failure (CHF); however, it is not clear if the preautonomic neurons within the PVN are specifically overactive. Also, it is not known if these neurons have altered responses to baroreceptor or osmotic challenges. Experiments were conducted in rats with CHF (6-8 wk after coronary artery ligation). Spontaneously active neurons were recorded in the PVN, of which 36% were antidromically activated from the rostral ventrolateral medulla (RVLM). The baseline discharge rate in RVLM-projecting PVN (PVN-RVLM) neurons from CHF rats was significantly greater than in sham-operated (sham) rats (6.0 ± 0.6 vs. 2.6 ± 0.3 spikes/s, P neurons by 80% in CHF rats compared with 37% in sham rats. Fifty-two percent of spontaneously active PVN-RVLM neurons responded to changes in the mean arterial pressure (MAP). The changes in discharge rate in PVN-RVLM neurons after a reduction in MAP (+52 ± 7% vs. +184 ± 61%) or an increase in MAP (-42 ± 8% vs. -71 ± 6%) were significantly attenuated in rats with CHF compared with sham rats. Most PVN-RVLM neurons (63%), including all barosensitive PVN-RVLM neurons, were excited by an internal carotid artery injection of hypertonic NaCl (2.1 osmol/l), whereas a smaller number (7%) were inhibited. The increase in discharge rate in PVN-RVLM neurons to hypertonic stimulation was significantly enhanced in rats with CHF compared with sham rats (134 ± 15% vs. 92 ± 13%). Taken together, these data suggest that PVN-RVLM neurons are more active under basal conditions and this overactivation is mediated by an enhanced glutamatergic tone in rats with CHF. Furthermore, this enhanced activation of PVN-RVLM neurons may contribute to the altered responses to baroreceptor and osmotic challenges observed during CHF.

  13. CALHM1 deficiency impairs cerebral neuron activity and memory flexibility in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vingtdeux, Valérie; Chang, Eric H; Frattini, Stephen A; Zhao, Haitian; Chandakkar, Pallavi; Adrien, Leslie; Strohl, Joshua J; Gibson, Elizabeth L; Ohmoto, Makoto; Matsumoto, Ichiro; Huerta, Patricio T; Marambaud, Philippe

    2016-04-12

    CALHM1 is a cell surface calcium channel expressed in cerebral neurons. CALHM1 function in the brain remains unknown, but recent results showed that neuronal CALHM1 controls intracellular calcium signaling and cell excitability, two mechanisms required for synaptic function. Here, we describe the generation of Calhm1 knockout (Calhm1(-/-)) mice and investigate CALHM1 role in neuronal and cognitive functions. Structural analysis revealed that Calhm1(-/-) brains had normal regional and cellular architecture, and showed no evidence of neuronal or synaptic loss, indicating that CALHM1 deficiency does not affect brain development or brain integrity in adulthood. However, Calhm1(-/-) mice showed a severe impairment in memory flexibility, assessed in the Morris water maze, and a significant disruption of long-term potentiation without alteration of long-term depression, measured in ex vivo hippocampal slices. Importantly, in primary neurons and hippocampal slices, CALHM1 activation facilitated the phosphorylation of NMDA and AMPA receptors by protein kinase A. Furthermore, neuronal CALHM1 activation potentiated the effect of glutamate on the expression of c-Fos and C/EBPβ, two immediate-early gene markers of neuronal activity. Thus, CALHM1 controls synaptic activity in cerebral neurons and is required for the flexible processing of memory in mice. These results shed light on CALHM1 physiology in the mammalian brain.

  14. Optimal compensation for neuron loss

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrett, David GT; Denève, Sophie; Machens, Christian K

    2016-01-01

    The brain has an impressive ability to withstand neural damage. Diseases that kill neurons can go unnoticed for years, and incomplete brain lesions or silencing of neurons often fail to produce any behavioral effect. How does the brain compensate for such damage, and what are the limits of this compensation? We propose that neural circuits instantly compensate for neuron loss, thereby preserving their function as much as possible. We show that this compensation can explain changes in tuning curves induced by neuron silencing across a variety of systems, including the primary visual cortex. We find that compensatory mechanisms can be implemented through the dynamics of networks with a tight balance of excitation and inhibition, without requiring synaptic plasticity. The limits of this compensatory mechanism are reached when excitation and inhibition become unbalanced, thereby demarcating a recovery boundary, where signal representation fails and where diseases may become symptomatic. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.12454.001 PMID:27935480

  15. Sub-acute nickel exposure impairs behavior, alters neuronal microarchitecture, and induces oxidative stress in rats' brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ijomone, Omamuyovwi Meashack; Okori, Stephen Odey; Ijomone, Olayemi Kafilat; Ebokaiwe, Azubike Peter

    2018-02-26

    Nickel (Ni) is a heavy metal with wide industrial uses. Environmental and occupational exposures to Ni are potential risk factors for neurological symptoms in humans. The present study investigated the behavior and histomorphological alterations in brain of rats sub-acutely exposed to nickel chloride (NiCl 2 ) and the possible involvement of oxidative stress. Rats were administered with 5, 10 or 20 mg/kg NiCl 2 via intraperitoneal injections for 21 days. Neurobehavioral assessment was performed using the Y-maze and open field test (OFT). Histomorphological analyses of brain tissues, as well as biochemical determination of oxidative stress levels were performed. Results showed that Ni treatments significantly reduced body weight and food intake. Cognitive and motor behaviors on the Y-maze and OFT, respectively, were compromised following Ni treatments. Administration of Ni affected neuronal morphology in the brain and significantly reduced percentage of intact neurons in both hippocampus and striatum. Additionally, markers of oxidative stress levels and nitric oxide (NO) levels were significantly altered following Ni treatments. These data suggest that compromised behavior and brain histomorphology following Ni exposures is associated with increase in oxidative stress.

  16. Misfolded SOD1 associated with motor neuron mitochondria alters mitochondrial shape and distribution prior to clinical onset.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christine Vande Velde

    Full Text Available Mutations in superoxide dismutase (SOD1 are causative for inherited amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. A proportion of SOD1 mutant protein is misfolded onto the cytoplasmic face of mitochondria in one or more spinal cord cell types. By construction of mice in which mitochondrially targeted enhanced green fluorescent protein is selectively expressed in motor neurons, we demonstrate that axonal mitochondria of motor neurons are primary in vivo targets for misfolded SOD1. Mutant SOD1 alters axonal mitochondrial morphology and distribution, with dismutase active SOD1 causing mitochondrial clustering at the proximal side of Schmidt-Lanterman incisures within motor axons and dismutase inactive SOD1 producing aberrantly elongated axonal mitochondria beginning pre-symptomatically and increasing in severity as disease progresses. Somal mitochondria are altered by mutant SOD1, with loss of the characteristic cylindrical, networked morphology and its replacement by a less elongated, more spherical shape. These data indicate that mutant SOD1 binding to mitochondria disrupts normal mitochondrial distribution and size homeostasis as early pathogenic features of SOD1 mutant-mediated ALS.

  17. Proton- and ammonium-sensing by histaminergic neurons controlling wakefulness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yanovsky, Yevgenij; Zigman, Jeffrey M; Kernder, Anna; Bein, Alisa; Sakata, Ichiro; Osborne-Lawrence, Sherri; Haas, Helmut L; Sergeeva, Olga A

    2012-01-01

    The histaminergic neurons in the tuberomamillary nucleus (TMN) of the posterior hypothalamus are involved in the control of arousal. These neurons are sensitive to hypercapnia as has been shown in experiments examining c-Fos expression, a marker for increased neuronal activity. We investigated the mechanisms through which TMN neurons respond to changes in extracellular levels of acid/CO(2). Recordings in rat brain slices revealed that acidification within the physiological range (pH from 7.4 to 7.0), as well as ammonium chloride (5 mM), excite histaminergic neurons. This excitation is significantly reduced by antagonists of type I metabotropic glutamate receptors and abolished by benzamil, an antagonist of acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) and Na(+)/Ca(2+) exchanger, or by ouabain which blocks Na(+)/K(+) ATPase. We detected variable combinations of 4 known types of ASICs in single TMN neurons, and observed activation of ASICs in single dissociated TMN neurons only at pH lower than 7.0. Thus, glutamate, which is known to be released by glial cells and orexinergic neurons, amplifies the acid/CO(2)-induced activation of TMN neurons. This amplification demands the coordinated function of metabotropic glutamate receptors, Na(+)/Ca(2+) exchanger and Na(+)/K(+) ATPase. We also developed a novel HDC-Cre transgenic reporter mouse line in which histaminergic TMN neurons can be visualized. In contrast to the rat, the mouse histaminergic neurons lacked the pH 7.0-induced excitation and displayed only a minimal response to the mGluR I agonist DHPG (0.5 μM). On the other hand, ammonium-induced excitation was similar in mouse and rat. These results are relevant for the understanding of the neuronal mechanisms controlling acid/CO(2)-induced arousal in hepatic encephalopathy and obstructive sleep apnoea. Moreover, the new HDC-Cre mouse model will be a useful tool for studying the physiological and pathophysiological roles of the histaminergic system.

  18. Does rapid and physiological astrocyte–neuron signalling amplify epileptic activity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The hippocampus is a key brain region in the pathophysiology of mesial temporal lobe epilepsy. Long‐term changes of its architecture and function on the network and cellular level are well documented in epilepsy. Astrocytes can control many aspects of neuronal function and their long‐term alterations over weeks, months and years play an important role in epilepsy. However, a pathophysiological transformation of astrocytes does not seem to be required for astrocytes to contribute to epileptic activity. Some of the properties of physiological astrocyte–neuron communication could allow these cells to exacerbate or synchronize neuronal firing on shorter time scales of milliseconds to minutes. Therefore, these astrocyte–neuron interactions are increasingly recognized as potential contributors to epileptic activity. Fast and reciprocal communication between astrocytes and neurons is enabled by a diverse set of mechanisms that could both amplify and counteract epileptic activity. They may thus promote or cause development of epileptic activity or inhibit it. Mechanisms of astrocyte–neuron interactions that can quickly increase network excitability involve, for example, astrocyte Ca2+ and Na+ signalling, K+ buffering, gap junction coupling and metabolism. However, rapid changes of astrocyte neurotransmitter uptake and morphology may also underlie or support development of network hyperexcitability. The temporal characteristics of these interactions, their ability to synchronize neuronal activity and their net effect on network activity will determine their contribution to the emergence or maintenance of epileptic activity. PMID:27106234

  19. Does rapid and physiological astrocyte-neuron signalling amplify epileptic activity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henneberger, Christian

    2017-03-15

    The hippocampus is a key brain region in the pathophysiology of mesial temporal lobe epilepsy. Long-term changes of its architecture and function on the network and cellular level are well documented in epilepsy. Astrocytes can control many aspects of neuronal function and their long-term alterations over weeks, months and years play an important role in epilepsy. However, a pathophysiological transformation of astrocytes does not seem to be required for astrocytes to contribute to epileptic activity. Some of the properties of physiological astrocyte-neuron communication could allow these cells to exacerbate or synchronize neuronal firing on shorter time scales of milliseconds to minutes. Therefore, these astrocyte-neuron interactions are increasingly recognized as potential contributors to epileptic activity. Fast and reciprocal communication between astrocytes and neurons is enabled by a diverse set of mechanisms that could both amplify and counteract epileptic activity. They may thus promote or cause development of epileptic activity or inhibit it. Mechanisms of astrocyte-neuron interactions that can quickly increase network excitability involve, for example, astrocyte Ca 2+ and Na + signalling, K + buffering, gap junction coupling and metabolism. However, rapid changes of astrocyte neurotransmitter uptake and morphology may also underlie or support development of network hyperexcitability. The temporal characteristics of these interactions, their ability to synchronize neuronal activity and their net effect on network activity will determine their contribution to the emergence or maintenance of epileptic activity. © 2016 The Authors. The Journal of Physiology © 2016 The Physiological Society.

  20. Bax regulates neuronal Ca2+ homeostasis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Orsi, Beatrice; Kilbride, Seán M; Chen, Gang; Perez Alvarez, Sergio; Bonner, Helena P; Pfeiffer, Shona; Plesnila, Nikolaus; Engel, Tobias; Henshall, David C; Düssmann, Heiko; Prehn, Jochen H M

    2015-01-28

    Excessive Ca(2+) entry during glutamate receptor overactivation ("excitotoxicity") induces acute or delayed neuronal death. We report here that deficiency in bax exerted broad neuroprotection against excitotoxic injury and oxygen/glucose deprivation in mouse neocortical neuron cultures and reduced infarct size, necrotic injury, and cerebral edema formation after middle cerebral artery occlusion in mice. Neuronal Ca(2+) and mitochondrial membrane potential (Δψm) analysis during excitotoxic injury revealed that bax-deficient neurons showed significantly reduced Ca(2+) transients during the NMDA excitation period and did not exhibit the deregulation of Δψm that was observed in their wild-type (WT) counterparts. Reintroduction of bax or a bax mutant incapable of proapoptotic oligomerization equally restored neuronal Ca(2+) dynamics during NMDA excitation, suggesting that Bax controlled Ca(2+) signaling independently of its role in apoptosis execution. Quantitative confocal imaging of intracellular ATP or mitochondrial Ca(2+) levels using FRET-based sensors indicated that the effects of bax deficiency on Ca(2+) handling were not due to enhanced cellular bioenergetics or increased Ca(2+) uptake into mitochondria. We also observed that mitochondria isolated from WT or bax-deficient cells similarly underwent Ca(2+)-induced permeability transition. However, when Ca(2+) uptake into the sarco/endoplasmic reticulum was blocked with the Ca(2+)-ATPase inhibitor thapsigargin, bax-deficient neurons showed strongly elevated cytosolic Ca(2+) levels during NMDA excitation, suggesting that the ability of Bax to support dynamic ER Ca(2+) handling is critical for cell death signaling during periods of neuronal overexcitation. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/351706-17$15.00/0.

  1. An ALS-Associated Mutant SOD1 Rapidly Suppresses KCNT1 (Slack) Na+-Activated K+ Channels in Aplysia Neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yalan; Ni, Weiming; Horwich, Arthur L; Kaczmarek, Leonard K

    2017-02-22

    Mutations that alter levels of Slack (KCNT1) Na + -activated K + current produce devastating effects on neuronal development and neuronal function. We now find that Slack currents are rapidly suppressed by oligomers of mutant human Cu/Zn superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1), which are associated with motor neuron toxicity in an inherited form of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). We recorded from bag cell neurons of Aplysia californica , a model system to study neuronal excitability. We found that injection of fluorescent wild-type SOD1 (wt SOD1YFP) or monomeric mutant G85R SOD1YFP had no effect on net ionic currents measured under voltage clamp. In contrast, outward potassium currents were significantly reduced by microinjection of mutant G85R SOD1YFP that had been preincubated at 37°C or of cross-linked dimers of G85R SOD1YFP. Reduction of potassium current was also seen with multimeric G85R SOD1YFP of ∼300 kDa or >300 kDa that had been cross-linked. In current clamp recordings, microinjection of cross-linked 300 kDa increased excitability by depolarizing the resting membrane potential, and decreasing the latency of action potentials triggered by depolarization. The effect of cross-linked 300 kDa on potassium current was reduced by removing Na + from the bath solution, or by knocking down levels of Slack using siRNA. It was also prevented by pharmacological inhibition of ASK1 (apoptosis signal-regulating kinase 1) or of c-Jun N-terminal kinase, but not by an inhibitor of p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase. These results suggest that soluble mutant SOD1 oligomers rapidly trigger a kinase pathway that regulates the activity of Na + -activated K + channels in neurons. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Slack Na + -activated K + channels (KCNT1, K Na 1.1) regulate neuronal excitability but are also linked to cytoplasmic signaling pathways that control neuronal protein translation. Mutations that alter the amplitude of these currents have devastating effects on neuronal

  2. A pupal transcriptomic screen identifies Ral as a target of store-operated calcium entry in Drosophila neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richhariya, Shlesha; Jayakumar, Siddharth; Abruzzi, Katharine; Rosbash, Michael; Hasan, Gaiti

    2017-02-14

    Transcriptional regulation by Store-operated Calcium Entry (SOCE) is well studied in non-excitable cells. However, the role of SOCE has been poorly documented in neuronal cells with more complicated calcium dynamics. Previous reports demonstrated a requirement for SOCE in neurons that regulate Drosophila flight bouts. We refine this requirement temporally to the early pupal stage and use RNA-sequencing to identify SOCE mediated gene expression changes in the developing Drosophila pupal nervous system. Down regulation of dStim, the endoplasmic reticular calcium sensor and a principal component of SOCE in the nervous system, altered the expression of 131 genes including Ral, a small GTPase. Disruption of Ral function in neurons impaired flight, whereas ectopic expression of Ral in SOCE-compromised neurons restored flight. Through live imaging of calcium transients from cultured pupal neurons, we confirmed that Ral does not participate in SOCE, but acts downstream of it. These results identify neuronal SOCE as a mechanism that regulates expression of specific genes during development of the pupal nervous system and emphasizes the relevance of SOCE-regulated gene expression to flight circuit maturation.

  3. [The detector, the command neuron and plastic convergence].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sokolov, E N

    1977-01-01

    The paper deals with the structure of detectors, the function of commanding neurones and the problem of relationship between detectors and commanding neurons. An example of hierarchial organization of detectors is provided by the colour analyser in which a layer of receptors, a layer of opponent neurones and a layer of colour-selective detectors are singled out. The colour detector is selectively sensitive to a certain combination of excitations at the input. If the detector is selectively activated by a certain combination of excitations at the input, the selective activation of the commanding neurone through a pool of motoneurones brings about a reaction at the output, specific in its organization. The reflexogenic zone of the reaction is determined by the detectors which converge on the commanding neurone controlling the given reaction. The plasticity of the reaction results from a plastic convergence of the detectors on the commanding neurone which controls the reaction. This comprises selective switching off the detectors from the commanding neurone (habituation) and connecting the detectors to the commanding neurone (facilitation).

  4. Functional properties of human neuronal Kv11 channels

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Einarsen, Karoline; Calloe, Kirstine; Grunnet, Morten

    2009-01-01

    Kv11 potassium channels are important for regulation of the membrane potential. Kv11.2 and Kv11.3 are primarily found in the nervous system, where they most likely are involved in the regulation of neuronal excitability. Two isoforms of human Kv11.2 have been published so far. Here, we present...... current characteristics of the isoforms presented in this work may contribute to the regulation of neuronal excitability....

  5. Phospholipase A2 - nexus of aging, oxidative stress, neuronal excitability, and functional decline of the aging nervous system? Insights from a snail model system of neuronal aging and age-associated memory impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hermann, Petra M; Watson, Shawn N; Wildering, Willem C

    2014-01-01

    The aging brain undergoes a range of changes varying from subtle structural and physiological changes causing only minor functional decline under healthy normal aging conditions, to severe cognitive or neurological impairment associated with extensive loss of neurons and circuits due to age-associated neurodegenerative disease conditions. Understanding how biological aging processes affect the brain and how they contribute to the onset and progress of age-associated neurodegenerative diseases is a core research goal in contemporary neuroscience. This review focuses on the idea that changes in intrinsic neuronal electrical excitability associated with (per)oxidation of membrane lipids and activation of phospholipase A2 (PLA2) enzymes are an important mechanism of learning and memory failure under normal aging conditions. Specifically, in the context of this special issue on the biology of cognitive aging we portray the opportunities offered by the identifiable neurons and behaviorally characterized neural circuits of the freshwater snail Lymnaea stagnalis in neuronal aging research and recapitulate recent insights indicating a key role of lipid peroxidation-induced PLA2 as instruments of aging, oxidative stress and inflammation in age-associated neuronal and memory impairment in this model system. The findings are discussed in view of accumulating evidence suggesting involvement of analogous mechanisms in the etiology of age-associated dysfunction and disease of the human and mammalian brain.

  6. Phospholipase A2 - nexus of aging, oxidative stress, neuronal excitability and functional decline of the aging nervous system? Insights from a snail model system of neuronal aging and age-associated memory impairment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Petra Maria Hermann

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available TThe aging brain can undergo a range of changes varying from subtle structural and physiological changes causing only minor functional decline under healthy normal aging conditions, to severe cognitive or neurological impairment associated with extensive loss of neurons and circuits due to age-associated neurodegenerative disease conditions. Understanding how biological aging processes affect the brain and how they contribute to the onset and progress of age-associated neurodegenerative diseases is a core research goal in contemporary neuroscience. This review focuses on the idea that changes in intrinsic neuronal electrical excitability associated with (peroxidation of membrane lipids and activation of phospholipase A2 (PLA2 enzymes are an important mechanism of learning and memory failure under normal aging conditions. Specifically, in the context of this special issue on the Biology of cognitive aging we (1 portray the opportunities offered by the identifiable neurons and behaviorally characterized neural circuits of the freshwater snail Lymnaea stagnalis in neuronal aging research and (2 recapitulate recent insights indicating a key role of lipid peroxidation-induced PLA2 as instruments of aging, oxidative stress and inflammation in age-associated neuronal and memory impairment in this model system. The findings are discussed in view of accumulating evidence suggesting involvement of analogous mechanisms in the etiology of age-associated dysfunction and disease of the human and mammalian brain.

  7. Hydrogen sulfide regulates cardiovascular function by influencing the excitability of subfornical organ neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Markus Kuksis

    Full Text Available Hydrogen sulfide (H2S, a gasotransmitter endogenously found in the central nervous system, has recently been suggested to act as a signalling molecule in the brain having beneficial effects on cardiovascular function. This study was thus undertaken to investigate the effect of NaHS (an H2S donor in the subfornical organ (SFO, a central nervous system site important to blood pressure regulation. We used male Sprague-Dawley rats for both in vivo and in vitro experiments. We first used RT-PCR to confirm our previous microarray analyses showing that mRNAs for the enzymes required to produce H2S are expressed in the SFO. We then used microinjection techniques to investigate the physiological effects of NaHS in SFO, and found that NaHS microinjection (5 nmol significantly increased blood pressure (mean AUC = 853.5±105.7 mmHg*s, n = 5. Further, we used patch-clamp electrophysiology and found that 97.8% (88 of 90 of neurons depolarized in response to NaHS. This response was found to be concentration dependent with an EC50 of 35.6 µM. Coupled with the depolarized membrane potential, we observed an overall increase in neuronal excitability using an analysis of rheobase and action potential firing patterns. This study has provided the first evidence of NaHS and thus H2S actions and their cellular correlates in SFO, implicating this brain area as a site where H2S may act to control blood pressure.

  8. Brain-specific Foxp1 deletion impairs neuronal development and causes autistic-like behaviour.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bacon, C; Schneider, M; Le Magueresse, C; Froehlich, H; Sticht, C; Gluch, C; Monyer, H; Rappold, G A

    2015-05-01

    Neurodevelopmental disorders are multi-faceted and can lead to intellectual disability, autism spectrum disorder and language impairment. Mutations in the Forkhead box FOXP1 gene have been linked to all these disorders, suggesting that it may play a central role in various cognitive and social processes. To understand the role of Foxp1 in the context of neurodevelopment leading to alterations in cognition and behaviour, we generated mice with a brain-specific Foxp1 deletion (Nestin-Cre(Foxp1-/-)mice). The mutant mice were viable and allowed for the first time the analysis of pre- and postnatal neurodevelopmental phenotypes, which included a pronounced disruption of the developing striatum and more subtle alterations in the hippocampus. More detailed analysis in the CA1 region revealed abnormal neuronal morphogenesis that was associated with reduced excitability and an imbalance of excitatory to inhibitory input in CA1 hippocampal neurons in Nestin-Cre(Foxp1-/-) mice. Foxp1 ablation was also associated with various cognitive and social deficits, providing new insights into its behavioural importance.

  9. MicroRNA-128 governs neuronal excitability and motor behavior in mice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tan, Chan Lek; Plotkin, Joshua L.; Venø, Morten Trillingsgaard

    2013-01-01

    The control of motor behavior in animals and humans requires constant adaptation of neuronal networks to signals of various types and strengths. We found that microRNA-128 (miR-128), which is expressed in adult neurons, regulates motor behavior by modulating neuronal signaling networks and excita...

  10. Macroglia-derived thrombospondin 2 regulates alterations of presynaptic proteins of retinal neurons following elevated hydrostatic pressure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Shuchao; Hu, Tu; Wang, Zhen; Li, Na; Zhou, Lihong; Liao, Lvshuang; Wang, Mi; Liao, Libin; Wang, Hui; Zeng, Leping; Fan, Chunling; Zhou, Hongkang; Xiong, Kun; Huang, Jufang; Chen, Dan

    2017-01-01

    protein upregulated the level of presynaptic proteins. Finally, gabapentin decreased the expression of presynaptic proteins in mixed cultures by blocking the interaction of thrombospondin 2 and α2δ-1. Taken together, these results indicate that activated macroglia cells may participate in alterations of presynaptic proteins of retinal neurons following elevated hydrostatic pressure, and macroglia-derived thrombospondin 2 may modulate these changes via binding to its neuronal receptor α2δ-1.

  11. Optogenetic stimulation of locus ceruleus neurons augments inhibitory transmission to parasympathetic cardiac vagal neurons via activation of brainstem α1 and β1 receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xin; Piñol, Ramón A; Byrne, Peter; Mendelowitz, David

    2014-04-30

    Locus ceruleus (LC) noradrenergic neurons are critical in generating alertness. In addition to inducing cortical arousal, the LC also orchestrates changes in accompanying autonomic system function that compliments increased attention, such as during stress, excitation, and/or exposure to averse or novel stimuli. Although the association between arousal and increased heart rate is well accepted, the neurobiological link between the LC and parasympathetic neurons that control heart rate has not been identified. In this study, we test directly whether activation of noradrenergic neurons in the LC influences brainstem parasympathetic cardiac vagal neurons (CVNs). CVNs were identified in transgenic mice that express channel-rhodopsin-2 (ChR2) in LC tyrosine hydroxylase neurons. Photoactivation evoked a rapid depolarization, increased firing, and excitatory inward currents in ChR2-expressing neurons in the LC. Photostimulation of LC neurons did not alter excitatory currents, but increased inhibitory neurotransmission to CVNs. Optogenetic activation of LC neurons increased the frequency of isolated glycinergic IPSCs by 27 ± 8% (p = 0.003, n = 26) and augmented GABAergic IPSCs in CVNs by 21 ± 5% (p = 0.001, n = 26). Inhibiting α1, but not α2, receptors blocked the evoked responses. Inhibiting β1 receptors prevented the increase in glycinergic, but not GABAergic, IPSCs in CVNs. This study demonstrates LC noradrenergic neurons inhibit the brainstem CVNs that generate parasympathetic activity to the heart. This inhibition of CVNs would increase heart rate and risks associated with tachycardia. The receptors activated within this pathway, α1 and/or β1 receptors, are targets for clinically prescribed antagonists that promote slower, cardioprotective heart rates during heightened vigilant states.

  12. The inhibition of nitric oxide-activated poly(ADP-ribose) synthetase attenuates transsynaptic alteration of spinal cord dorsal horn neurons and neuropathic pain in the rat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mao, J; Price, D D; Zhu, J; Lu, J; Mayer, D J

    1997-09-01

    Transsynaptic alteration of spinal cord dorsal horn neurons characterized by hyperchromatosis of cytoplasm and nucleoplasm (so-called 'dark' neurons) occurs in a rat model of neuropathic pain induced by chronic constriction injury (CCI) of the common sciatic nerve. The incidence of dark neurons in CCI rats has been proposed to be mediated by glutamate-induced neurotoxicity. In the present study, we examined whether the inhibition of the nitric oxide (NO)-activated poly(ADP-ribose) synthetase (PARS), a nuclear enzyme critical to glutamate-induced neurotoxicity, would both reduce the incidence of dark neurons and attenuate behavioral manifestations of neuropathic pain in CCI rats. Dark neurons were observed bilaterally (with ipsilateral predominance) within the spinal cord dorsal horn, particularly in laminae I-II, of rats 8 days after unilateral sciatic nerve ligation as compared to sham operated rats. The number of dark neurons in the dorsal horn was dose-dependently reduced in CCI rats receiving once daily intrathecal (i.t.) treatment with the PARS inhibitor benzamide (200 or 400 nmol, but not 100 nmol benzamide or saline) for 7 days. Consistent with the histological improvement, thermal hyperalgesia, mechanical hyperalgesia, and low threshold mechano-allodynia also were reliably reduced in CCI rats treated with either 200 or 400 nmol benzamide. Neither dark neurons nor neuropathic pain behaviors were reliably affected by i.t. administration of either 800 nmol novobiocin (a mono(ADP-ribose) synthetase) or 800 nmol benzoic acid (the backbone structure of benzamide), indicating a selective effect of benzamide. Intrathecal treatment with an NO synthase inhibitor NG-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester (40 nmol, but not its inactive D-isomer) utilizing the same benzamide treatment regimen resulted in similar reductions of both dark neurons and neuropathic pain behaviors in CCI rats. These results provide, for the first time, in vivo evidence indicating that benzamide is

  13. Intratelencephalic corticostriatal neurons equally excite striatonigral and striatopallidal neurons and their discharge activity is selectively reduced in experimental parkinsonism

    OpenAIRE

    Ballion, B. (B.); Mallet, N. (Nicolas); Bezard, E. (E.); Lanciego, J.L. (José Luis); Gonon, F. (Francois)

    2008-01-01

    Striatonigral and striatopallidal neurons form distinct populations of striatal projection neurons. Their discharge activity is imbalanced after dopaminergic degeneration in Parkinson's disease. Striatal projection neurons receive massive cortical excitatory inputs from bilateral intratelencephalic (IT) neurons projecting to both the ipsilateral and contralateral striatum and from collateral axons of ipsilateral neurons that send their main axon through the pyramidal tract (PT). Previous anat...

  14. Intrinsic neuromodulation: altering neuronal circuits from within.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katz, P S; Frost, W N

    1996-02-01

    There are two sources of neuromodulation for neuronal circuits: extrinsic inputs and intrinsic components of the circuits themselves. Extrinsic neuromodulation is known to be pervasive in nervous systems, but intrinsic neuromodulation is less recognized, despite the fact that it has now been demonstrated in sensory and neuromuscular circuits and in central pattern generators. By its nature, intrinsic neuromodulation produces local changes in neuronal computation, whereas extrinsic neuromodulation can cause global changes, often affecting many circuits simultaneously. Studies in a number of systems are defining the different properties of these two forms of neuromodulation.

  15. Activation of the Basal Forebrain by the Orexin/Hypocretin Neurons: Orexin International Symposium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arrigoni, Elda; Mochizuki, Takatoshi; Scammell, Thomas E.

    2010-01-01

    The orexin neurons play an essential role in driving arousal and in maintaining normal wakefulness. Lack of orexin neurotransmission produces a chronic state of hypoarousal characterized by excessive sleepiness, frequent transitions between wake and sleep, and episodes of cataplexy. A growing body of research now suggests that the basal forebrain (BF) may be a key site through which the orexin-producing neurons promote arousal. Here we review anatomical, pharmacological and electrophysiological studies on how the orexin neurons may promote arousal by exciting cortically-projecting neurons of the BF. Orexin fibers synapse on BF cholinergic neurons and orexin-A is released in the BF during waking. Local application of orexins excites BF cholinergic neurons, induces cortical release of acetylcholine, and promotes wakefulness. The orexin neurons also contain and probably co-release the inhibitory neuropeptide dynorphin. We found that orexin-A and dynorphin have specific effects on different classes of BF neurons that project to the cortex. Cholinergic neurons were directly excited by orexin-A, but did not respond to dynorphin. Non-cholinergic BF neurons that project to the cortex seem to comprise at least two populations with some directly excited by orexin that may represent wake-active, GABAergic neurons, whereas others did not respond to orexin but were inhibited by dynorphin and may be sleep-active, GABAergic neurons. This evidence suggests that the BF is a key site through which orexins activate the cortex and promotes behavioral arousal. In addition, orexins and dynorphin may act synergistically in the BF to promote arousal and improve cognitive performance. PMID:19723027

  16. Histone Deacetylase (HDAC) Inhibitors - emerging roles in neuronal memory, learning, synaptic plasticity and neural regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ganai, Shabir Ahmad; Ramadoss, Mahalakshmi; Mahadevan, Vijayalakshmi

    2016-01-01

    Epigenetic regulation of neuronal signalling through histone acetylation dictates transcription programs that govern neuronal memory, plasticity and learning paradigms. Histone Acetyl Transferases (HATs) and Histone Deacetylases (HDACs) are antagonistic enzymes that regulate gene expression through acetylation and deacetylation of histone proteins around which DNA is wrapped inside a eukaryotic cell nucleus. The epigenetic control of HDACs and the cellular imbalance between HATs and HDACs dictate disease states and have been implicated in muscular dystrophy, loss of memory, neurodegeneration and autistic disorders. Altering gene expression profiles through inhibition of HDACs is now emerging as a powerful technique in therapy. This review presents evolving applications of HDAC inhibitors as potential drugs in neurological research and therapy. Mechanisms that govern their expression profiles in neuronal signalling, plasticity and learning will be covered. Promising and exciting possibilities of HDAC inhibitors in memory formation, fear conditioning, ischemic stroke and neural regeneration have been detailed.

  17. Serotonergic neurons signal reward and punishment on multiple timescales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, Jeremiah Y; Amoroso, Mackenzie W; Uchida, Naoshige

    2015-01-01

    Serotonin's function in the brain is unclear. One challenge in testing the numerous hypotheses about serotonin's function has been observing the activity of identified serotonergic neurons in animals engaged in behavioral tasks. We recorded the activity of dorsal raphe neurons while mice experienced a task in which rewards and punishments varied across blocks of trials. We ‘tagged’ serotonergic neurons with the light-sensitive protein channelrhodopsin-2 and identified them based on their responses to light. We found three main features of serotonergic neuron activity: (1) a large fraction of serotonergic neurons modulated their tonic firing rates over the course of minutes during reward vs punishment blocks; (2) most were phasically excited by punishments; and (3) a subset was phasically excited by reward-predicting cues. By contrast, dopaminergic neurons did not show firing rate changes across blocks of trials. These results suggest that serotonergic neurons signal information about reward and punishment on multiple timescales. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.06346.001 PMID:25714923

  18. Effects of weak electric fields on the activity of neurons and neuronal networks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jeffreys, J.G.R.; Deans, J.; Bikson, M.; Fox, J.

    2003-01-01

    Electric fields applied to brain tissue will affect cellular properties. They will hyperpolarise the ends of cells closest to the positive part of the field, and depolarise ends closest to the negative. In the case of neurons this affects excitability. How these changes in transmembrane potential are distributed depends on the length constant of the neuron, and on its geometry; if the neuron is electrically compact, the change in transmembrane potential becomes an almost linear function of distance in the direction of the field. Neurons from the mammalian hippocampus, maintained in tissue slices in vitro, are significantly affected by fields of around 1-5 Vm -1 . (author)

  19. Genetically encoded proton sensors reveal activity-dependent pH changes in neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph Valentino Raimondo

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available The regulation of hydrogen ion concentration (pH is fundamental to cell viability, metabolism and enzymatic function. Within the nervous system, the control of pH is also involved in diverse and dynamic processes including development, synaptic transmission and the control of network excitability. As pH affects neuronal activity, and can also itself be altered by neuronal activity, the existence of tools to accurately measure hydrogen ion fluctuations is important for understanding the role pH plays under physiological and pathological conditions. Outside of their use as a marker of synaptic release, genetically encoded pH sensors have not been utilised to study hydrogen ion fluxes associated with network activity. By combining whole-cell patch clamp with simultaneous two-photon or confocal imaging, we quantified the amplitude and time course of neuronal, intracellular, acidic transients evoked by epileptiform activity in two separate in vitro models of temporal lobe epilepsy. In doing so, we demonstrate the suitability of three genetically encoded pH sensors: deGFP4, E2GFP and Cl-sensor for investigating activity-dependent pH changes at the level of single neurons.

  20. Genetically encoded proton sensors reveal activity-dependent pH changes in neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raimondo, Joseph V; Irkle, Agnese; Wefelmeyer, Winnie; Newey, Sarah E; Akerman, Colin J

    2012-01-01

    The regulation of hydrogen ion concentration (pH) is fundamental to cell viability, metabolism, and enzymatic function. Within the nervous system, the control of pH is also involved in diverse and dynamic processes including development, synaptic transmission, and the control of network excitability. As pH affects neuronal activity, and can also itself be altered by neuronal activity, the existence of tools to accurately measure hydrogen ion fluctuations is important for understanding the role pH plays under physiological and pathological conditions. Outside of their use as a marker of synaptic release, genetically encoded pH sensors have not been utilized to study hydrogen ion fluxes associated with network activity. By combining whole-cell patch clamp with simultaneous two-photon or confocal imaging, we quantified the amplitude and time course of neuronal, intracellular, acidic transients evoked by epileptiform activity in two separate in vitro models of temporal lobe epilepsy. In doing so, we demonstrate the suitability of three genetically encoded pH sensors: deGFP4, E(2)GFP, and Cl-sensor for investigating activity-dependent pH changes at the level of single neurons.

  1. Trim9 Deletion Alters the Morphogenesis of Developing and Adult-Born Hippocampal Neurons and Impairs Spatial Learning and Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winkle, Cortney C; Olsen, Reid H J; Kim, Hyojin; Moy, Sheryl S; Song, Juan; Gupton, Stephanie L

    2016-05-04

    During hippocampal development, newly born neurons migrate to appropriate destinations, extend axons, and ramify dendritic arbors to establish functional circuitry. These developmental stages are recapitulated in the dentate gyrus of the adult hippocampus, where neurons are continuously generated and subsequently incorporate into existing, local circuitry. Here we demonstrate that the E3 ubiquitin ligase TRIM9 regulates these developmental stages in embryonic and adult-born mouse hippocampal neurons in vitro and in vivo Embryonic hippocampal and adult-born dentate granule neurons lacking Trim9 exhibit several morphological defects, including excessive dendritic arborization. Although gross anatomy of the hippocampus was not detectably altered by Trim9 deletion, a significant number of Trim9(-/-) adult-born dentate neurons localized inappropriately. These morphological and localization defects of hippocampal neurons in Trim9(-/-) mice were associated with extreme deficits in spatial learning and memory, suggesting that TRIM9-directed neuronal morphogenesis may be involved in hippocampal-dependent behaviors. Appropriate generation and incorporation of adult-born neurons in the dentate gyrus are critical for spatial learning and memory and other hippocampal functions. Here we identify the brain-enriched E3 ubiquitin ligase TRIM9 as a novel regulator of embryonic and adult hippocampal neuron shape acquisition and hippocampal-dependent behaviors. Genetic deletion of Trim9 elevated dendritic arborization of hippocampal neurons in vitro and in vivo Adult-born dentate granule cells lacking Trim9 similarly exhibited excessive dendritic arborization and mislocalization of cell bodies in vivo These cellular defects were associated with severe deficits in spatial learning and memory. Copyright © 2016 the authors 0270-6474/16/364940-19$15.00/0.

  2. Nanomolar Bifenthrin Alters Synchronous Ca2+ Oscillations and Cortical Neuron Development Independent of Sodium Channel Activity

    OpenAIRE

    Cao, Zhengyu; Cui, Yanjun; Nguyen, Hai M.; Jenkins, David Paul; Wulff, Heike; Pessah, Isaac N.

    2014-01-01

    Bifenthrin, a relatively stable type I pyrethroid that causes tremors and impairs motor activity in rodents, is broadly used. We investigated whether nanomolar bifenthrin alters synchronous Ca 2+ oscillations (SCOs) necessary for activity-dependent dendritic development. Primary mouse cortical neurons were cultured 8 or 9 days in vitro (DIV), loaded with the Ca2+ indicator Fluo-4, and imaged using a Fluorescence Imaging Plate Reader Tetra. Acute exposure to bifenthrin rapidly increased the fr...

  3. Optogenetic Stimulation Shifts the Excitability of Cerebral Cortex from Type I to Type II: Oscillation Onset and Wave Propagation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stewart Heitmann

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Constant optogenetic stimulation targeting both pyramidal cells and inhibitory interneurons has recently been shown to elicit propagating waves of gamma-band (40-80 Hz oscillations in the local field potential of non-human primate motor cortex. The oscillations emerge with non-zero frequency and small amplitude-the hallmark of a type II excitable medium-yet they also propagate far beyond the stimulation site in the manner of a type I excitable medium. How can neural tissue exhibit both type I and type II excitability? We investigated the apparent contradiction by modeling the cortex as a Wilson-Cowan neural field in which optogenetic stimulation was represented by an external current source. In the absence of any external current, the model operated as a type I excitable medium that supported propagating waves of gamma oscillations similar to those observed in vivo. Applying an external current to the population of inhibitory neurons transformed the model into a type II excitable medium. The findings suggest that cortical tissue normally operates as a type I excitable medium but it is locally transformed into a type II medium by optogenetic stimulation which predominantly targets inhibitory neurons. The proposed mechanism accounts for the graded emergence of gamma oscillations at the stimulation site while retaining propagating waves of gamma oscillations in the non-stimulated tissue. It also predicts that gamma waves can be emitted on every second cycle of a 100 Hz oscillation. That prediction was subsequently confirmed by re-analysis of the neurophysiological data. The model thus offers a theoretical account of how optogenetic stimulation alters the excitability of cortical neural fields.

  4. Alpha2delta-1 in SF1+ Neurons of the Ventromedial Hypothalamus Is an Essential Regulator of Glucose and Lipid Homeostasis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer A. Felsted

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Summary: The central mechanisms controlling glucose and lipid homeostasis are inadequately understood. We show that α2δ-1 is an essential regulator of glucose and lipid balance, acting in steroidogenic factor-1 (SF1 neurons of the ventromedial hypothalamus (VMH. These effects are body weight independent and involve regulation of SF1+ neuronal activity and sympathetic output to metabolic tissues. Accordingly, mice with α2δ-1 deletion in SF1 neurons exhibit glucose intolerance, altered lipolysis, and decreased cholesterol content in adipose tissue despite normal energy balance regulation. Profound reductions in the firing rate of SF1 neurons, decreased sympathetic output, and elevated circulating levels of serotonin are associated with these alterations. Normal calcium currents but reduced excitatory postsynaptic currents in mutant SF1 neurons implicate α2δ-1 in the promotion of excitatory synaptogenesis separate from its canonical role as a calcium channel subunit. Collectively, these findings identify an essential mechanism that regulates VMH neuronal activity and glycemic and lipid control and may be a target for tackling metabolic disease. : Felsted et al. show a required role of the calcium channel subunit and thrombospondin receptor α2δ-1 in regulating glucose and lipid homeostasis in the ventromedial hypothalamus (VMH. These effects are caused by regulation of SF1+ neuronal activity in the VMH through non-canonical mechanisms and concomitant influences on sympathetic output. Keywords: diabetes, VMH, hypothalamus, glucose, norepinephrine, serotonin, excitability, lipid, SF1

  5. Glycogen synthase kinase 3 beta alters anxiety-, depression-, and addiction-related behaviors and neuronal activity in the nucleus accumbens shell

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crofton, Elizabeth J.; Nenov, Miroslav N.; Zhang, Yafang; Scala, Federico; Page, Sean A.; McCue, David L.; Li, Dingge; Hommel, Jonathan D.; Laezza, Fernanda; Green, Thomas A.

    2017-01-01

    Psychiatric disorders such as anxiety, depression and addiction are often comorbid brain pathologies thought to share common mechanistic biology. As part of the cortico-limbic circuit, the nucleus accumbens shell (NAcSh) plays a fundamental role in integrating information in the circuit, such that modulation of NAcSh circuitry alters anxiety, depression, and addiction-related behaviors. Intracellular kinase cascades in the NAcSh have proven important mediators of behavior. To investigate glycogen-synthase kinase 3 (GSK3) beta signaling in the NAcSh in vivo we knocked down GSK3beta expression with a novel adeno-associated viral vector (AAV2) and assessed changes in anxiety- and depression-like behavior and cocaine self-administration in GSK3beta knockdown rats. GSK3beta knockdown reduced anxiety-like behavior while increasing depression-like behavior and cocaine self-administration. Correlative electrophysiological recordings in acute brain slices were used to assess the effect of AAV-shGSK3beta on spontaneous firing and intrinsic excitability of tonically active interneurons (TANs), cells required for input and output signal integration in the NAcSh and for processing reward-related behaviors. Loose-patch recordings showed that TANs transduced by AAV-shGSK3beta exhibited reduction in tonic firing and increased spike half width. When assessed by whole-cell patch clamp recordings these changes were mirrored by reduction in action potential firing and accompanied by decreased hyperpolarization-induced depolarizing sag potentials, increased action potential current threshold, and decreased maximum rise time. These results suggest that silencing of GSK3beta in the NAcSh increases depression- and addiction-related behavior, possibly by decreasing intrinsic excitability of TANs. However, this study does not rule out contributions from other neuronal sub-types. PMID:28126496

  6. β-Adrenergic enhancement of neuronal excitability in the lateral amygdala is developmentally gated.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fink, Ann E; LeDoux, Joseph E

    2018-05-01

    Noradrenergic signaling in the amygdala is important for processing threats and other emotionally salient stimuli, and β-adrenergic receptor activation is known to enhance neuronal spiking in the lateral amygdala (LA) of juvenile animals. Nevertheless, intracellular recordings have not yet been conducted to determine the effect of β-adrenergic receptor activation on spike properties in the adult LA, despite the potential significance of developmental changes between adolescence and adulthood. Here we demonstrate that the β-adrenergic agonist isoproterenol (15 μM) enhances spike frequency in dorsal LA principal neurons of juvenile male C57BL/6 mice and fails to do so in strain- and sex-matched adults. Furthermore, we find that the age-dependent effect of isoproterenol on spike frequency is occluded by the GABA A receptor blocker picrotoxin (75 μM), suggesting that β-adrenergic receptors downregulate tonic inhibition specifically in juvenile animals. These findings indicate a significant shift during adolescence in the cellular mechanisms of β-adrenergic modulation in the amygdala. NEW & NOTEWORTHY β-Adrenergic receptors (β-ARs) in amygdala are important in processing emotionally salient stimuli. Most cellular recordings have examined juvenile animals, while behavioral data are often obtained from adults. We replicate findings showing that β-ARs enhance spiking of principal cells in the lateral amygdala of juveniles, but we fail to find this in adults. These findings have notable scientific and clinical implications regarding the noradrenergic modulation of threat processing, alterations of which underlie fear and anxiety disorders.

  7. Feedforward and feedback inhibition in neostriatal GABAergic spiny neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tepper, James M; Wilson, Charles J; Koós, Tibor

    2008-08-01

    There are two distinct inhibitory GABAergic circuits in the neostriatum. The feedforward circuit consists of a relatively small population of GABAergic interneurons that receives excitatory input from the neocortex and exerts monosynaptic inhibition onto striatal spiny projection neurons. The feedback circuit comprises the numerous spiny projection neurons and their interconnections via local axon collaterals. This network has long been assumed to provide the majority of striatal GABAergic inhibition and to sharpen and shape striatal output through lateral inhibition, producing increased activity in the most strongly excited spiny cells at the expense of their less strongly excited neighbors. Recent results, mostly from recording experiments of synaptically connected pairs of neurons, have revealed that the two GABAergic circuits differ markedly in terms of the total number of synapses made by each, the strength of the postsynaptic response detected at the soma, the extent of presynaptic convergence and divergence and the net effect of the activation of each circuit on the postsynaptic activity of the spiny neuron. These data have revealed that the feedforward inhibition is powerful and widespread, with spiking in a single interneuron being capable of significantly delaying or even blocking the generation of spikes in a large number of postsynaptic spiny neurons. In contrast, the postsynaptic effects of spiking in a single presynaptic spiny neuron on postsynaptic spiny neurons are weak when measured at the soma, and unable to significantly affect spike timing or generation. Further, reciprocity of synaptic connections between spiny neurons is only rarely observed. These results suggest that the bulk of the fast inhibition that has the strongest effects on spiny neuron spike timing comes from the feedforward interneuronal system whereas the axon collateral feedback system acts principally at the dendrites to control local excitability as well as the overall level of

  8. Estradiol Protects Proopiomelanocortin Neurons Against Insulin Resistance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qiu, Jian; Bosch, Martha A; Meza, Cecilia; Navarro, Uyen-Vy; Nestor, Casey C; Wagner, Edward J; Rønnekleiv, Oline K; Kelly, Martin J

    2018-02-01

    Insulin resistance is at the core of the metabolic syndrome, and men exhibit a higher incidence of metabolic syndrome than women in early adult life, but this sex advantage diminishes sharply when women reach the postmenopausal state. Because 17β-estradiol (E2) augments the excitability of the anorexigenic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) neurons, we investigated the neuroprotective effects of E2 against insulin resistance in POMC neurons from diet-induced obese (DIO) female and male mice. The efficacy of insulin to activate canonical transient receptor potential 5 (TRPC5) channels and depolarize POMC neurons was significantly reduced in DIO male mice but not in DIO female mice. However, the insulin response in POMC neurons was abrogated in ovariectomized DIO females but restored with E2 replacement. E2 increased T-type calcium channel Cav3.1 messenger RNA (mRNA) expression and whole-cell currents but downregulated stromal-interaction molecule 1 mRNA, which rendered POMC neurons more excitable and responsive to insulin-mediated TRPC5 channel activation. Moreover, E2 prevented the increase in suppressor of cytokine signaling-3 mRNA expression with DIO as seen in DIO males. As proof of principle, insulin [intracerebroventricular injection into the third ventricle (ICV)] decreased food intake and increased metabolism in female but not male guinea pigs fed a high-fat diet. The uncoupling of the insulin receptor from its downstream effector system was corroborated by the reduced expression of phosphorylated protein kinase B in the arcuate nucleus of male but not female guinea pigs following insulin. Therefore, E2 protects female POMC neurons from insulin resistance by enhancing POMC neuronal excitability and the coupling of insulin receptor to TRPC5 channel activation. Copyright © 2018 Endocrine Society.

  9. Effect of an inhibitor of neuronal nitric oxide synthase 7-nitroindazole on cerebral hemodynamic response and brain excitability in urethane-anesthetized rats

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Brožíčková, Carole; Otáhal, Jakub

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 62, Suppl.1 (2013), S57-S66 ISSN 0862-8408 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP303/10/0999; GA ČR(CZ) GPP304/11/P386; GA ČR(CZ) GBP304/12/G069 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50110509 Institutional support: RVO:67985823 Keywords : cerebral hemodynamic response * brain excitability * neuronal nitric oxide synthase * 7-nitroindazole * rat Subject RIV: FH - Neurology Impact factor: 1.487, year: 2013

  10. Cholera Toxin Induces Sustained Hyperexcitability in Myenteric, but Not Submucosal, AH Neurons in Guinea Pig Jejunum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joel C. Bornstein

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Background and Aims: Cholera toxin (CT-induced hypersecretion requires activation of secretomotor pathways in the enteric nervous system (ENS. AH neurons, which have been identified as a population of intrinsic sensory neurons (ISNs, are a source of excitatory input to the secretomotor pathways. We therefore examined effects of CT in the intestinal lumen on myenteric and submucosal AH neurons.Methods: Isolated segments of guinea pig jejunum were incubated for 90 min with saline plus CT (12.5 μg/ml or CT + neurotransmitter antagonist, or CT + tetrodotoxin (TTX in their lumen. After washing CT away, submucosal or myenteric plexus preparations were dissected keeping circumferentially adjacent mucosa intact. Submucosal AH neurons were impaled adjacent to intact mucosa and myenteric AH neurons were impaled adjacent to, more than 5 mm from, and in the absence of intact mucosa. Neuronal excitability was monitored by injecting 500 ms current pulses through the recording electrode.Results: After CT pre-treatment, excitability of myenteric AH neurons adjacent to intact mucosa (n = 29 was greater than that of control neurons (n = 24, but submucosal AH neurons (n = 33, control n = 27 were unaffected. CT also induced excitability increases in myenteric AH neurons impaled distant from the mucosa (n = 6 or in its absence (n = 5. Coincubation with tetrodotoxin or SR142801 (NK3 receptor antagonist, but not SR140333 (NK1 antagonist or granisetron (5-HT3 receptor antagonist prevented the increased excitability induced by CT. Increased excitability was associated with a reduction in the characteristic AHP and an increase in the ADP of these neurons, but not a change in the hyperpolarization-activated inward current, Ih.Conclusions: CT increases excitability of myenteric, but not submucosal, AH neurons. This is neurally mediated and depends on NK3, but not 5-HT3 receptors. Therefore, CT may act to amplify the secretomotor response to CT via an increase in the

  11. PYRETHROID MODULATION OF SPONTANEOUS NEURONAL EXCITABILITY AND NEUROTRANSMISSION IN HIPPOCAMPAL NEURONS IN CULTURE

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pyrethroid insecticides have potent actions on voltage-gated sodium channels, inhibiting inactivation and increasing channel open times. These are thought to underlie, at least in part, the clinical symptoms of pyrethroid intoxication. However, disruption of neuronal activity at ...

  12. Genetic deficiency of GABA differentially regulates respiratory and non-respiratory motor neuron development.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew J Fogarty

    Full Text Available Central nervous system GABAergic and glycinergic synaptic activity switches from postsynaptic excitation to inhibition during the stage when motor neuron numbers are being reduced, and when synaptic connections are being established onto and by motor neurons. In mice this occurs between embryonic (E day 13 and birth (postnatal day 0. Our previous work on mice lacking glycinergic transmission suggested that altered motor neuron activity levels correspondingly regulated motor neuron survival and muscle innervation for all respiratory and non respiratory motor neuron pools, during this period of development [1]. To determine if GABAergic transmission plays a similar role, we quantified motor neuron number and the extent of muscle innervation in four distinct regions of the brain stem and spinal cord; hypoglossal, phrenic, brachial and lumbar motor pools, in mice lacking the enzyme GAD67. These mice display a 90% drop in CNS GABA levels ( [2]; this study. For respiratory-based motor neurons (hypoglossal and phrenic motor pools, we have observed significant drops in motor neuron number (17% decline for hypoglossal and 23% decline for phrenic and muscle innervations (55% decrease. By contrast for non-respiratory motor neurons of the brachial lateral motor column, we have observed an increase in motor neuron number (43% increase and muscle innervations (99% increase; however for more caudally located motor neurons within the lumbar lateral motor column, we observed no change in either neuron number or muscle innervation. These results show in mice lacking physiological levels of GABA, there are distinct regional changes in motor neuron number and muscle innervation, which appear to be linked to their physiological function and to their rostral-caudal position within the developing spinal cord. Our results also suggest that for more caudal (lumbar regions of the spinal cord, the effect of GABA is less influential on motor neuron development compared to

  13. Direct projections from hypothalamic orexin neurons to brainstem cardiac vagal neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dergacheva, Olga; Yamanaka, Akihiro; Schwartz, Alan R; Polotsky, Vsevolod Y; Mendelowitz, David

    2016-12-17

    Orexin neurons are known to augment the sympathetic control of cardiovascular function, however the role of orexin neurons in parasympathetic cardiac regulation remains unclear. To test the hypothesis that orexin neurons contribute to parasympathetic control we selectively expressed channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2) in orexin neurons in orexin-Cre transgenic rats and examined postsynaptic currents in cardiac vagal neurons (CVNs) in the dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus (DMV). Simultaneous photostimulation and recording in ChR2-expressing orexin neurons in the lateral hypothalamus resulted in reliable action potential firing as well as large whole-cell currents suggesting a strong expression of ChR2 and reliable optogenetic excitation. Photostimulation of ChR2-expressing fibers in the DMV elicited short-latency (ranging from 3.2ms to 8.5ms) postsynaptic currents in 16 out of 44 CVNs tested. These responses were heterogeneous and included excitatory glutamatergic (63%) and inhibitory GABAergic (37%) postsynaptic currents. The results from this study suggest different sub-population of orexin neurons may exert diverse influences on brainstem CVNs and therefore may play distinct functional roles in parasympathetic control of the heart. Copyright © 2016 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Glycemic state regulates melanocortin, but not nesfatin-1, responsiveness of glucose-sensing neurons in the nucleus of the solitary tract.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mimee, Andrea; Ferguson, Alastair V

    2015-04-15

    The nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS) is a medullary integrative center with critical roles in the coordinated control of energy homeostasis. Here, we used whole cell current-clamp recordings on rat NTS neurons in slice preparation to identify the presence of physiologically relevant glucose-sensing neurons. The majority of NTS neurons (n = 81) were found to be glucose-responsive, with 35% exhibiting a glucose-excited (GE) phenotype (mean absolute change in membrane potential: 9.5 ± 1.1 mV), and 21% exhibiting a glucose-inhibited (GI) response (mean: 6.3 ± 0.7 mV). Furthermore, we found glucose-responsive cells are preferentially influenced by the anorexigenic peptide α-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (α-MSH), but not nesfatin-1. Accordingly, alterations in glycemic state have profound effects on the responsiveness of NTS neurons to α-MSH, but not to nesfatin-1. Indeed, NTS neurons showed increasing responsiveness to α-MSH as extracellular glucose concentrations were decreased, and in hypoglycemic conditions, all NTS neurons were depolarized by α-MSH (mean 10.6 ± 3.2 mV; n = 8). Finally, decreasing levels of extracellular glucose correlated with a significant hyperpolarization of the baseline membrane potential of NTS neurons, highlighting the modulatory effect of glucose on the baseline excitability of cells in this region. Our findings reveal individual NTS cells are capable of integrating multiple sources of metabolically relevant inputs, highlight the rapid capacity for plasticity in medullary melanocortin circuits, and emphasize the critical importance of physiological recording conditions for electrophysiological studies pertaining to the central control of energy homeostasis. Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.

  15. Reversed synaptic effects of hypocretin and NPY mediated by excitatory GABA-dependent synaptic activity in developing MCH neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ying; Xu, Youfen; van den Pol, Anthony N

    2013-03-01

    In mature neurons, GABA is the primary inhibitory neurotransmitter. In contrast, in developing neurons, GABA exerts excitatory actions, and in some neurons GABA-mediated excitatory synaptic activity is more prevalent than glutamate-mediated excitation. Hypothalamic neuropeptides that modulate cognitive arousal and energy homeostasis, hypocretin/orexin and neuropeptide Y (NPY), evoked reversed effects on synaptic actions that were dependent on presynaptic GABA release onto melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH) neurons. MCH neurons were identified by selective green fluorescent protein (GFP) expression in transgenic mice. In adults, hypocretin increased GABA release leading to reduced excitation. In contrast, in the developing brain as studied here with analysis of miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents, paired-pulse ratios, and evoked potentials, hypocretin acted presynaptically to enhance the excitatory actions of GABA. The ability of hypocretin to enhance GABA release increases inhibition in adult neurons but paradoxically enhances excitation in developing MCH neurons. In contrast, NPY attenuation of GABA release reduced inhibition in mature neurons but enhanced inhibition during development by attenuating GABA excitation. Both hypocretin and NPY also evoked direct actions on developing MCH neurons. Hypocretin excited MCH cells by activating a sodium-calcium exchanger and by reducing potassium currents; NPY reduced activity by increasing an inwardly rectifying potassium current. These data for the first time show that both hypocretin and NPY receptors are functional presynaptically during early postnatal hypothalamic development and that both neuropeptides modulate GABA actions during development with a valence of enhanced excitation or inhibition opposite to that of the adult state, potentially allowing neuropeptide modulation of use-dependent synapse stabilization.

  16. Conservation of 5-HT1A receptor-mediated autoinhibition of serotonin (5-HT neurons in mice with altered 5-HT homeostasis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naozumi eAraragi

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Firing activity of serotonin (5-HT neurons in the dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN is controlled by inhibitory somatodendritic 5-HT1A autoreceptors. This autoinhibitory mechanism is implicated in the etiology of disorders of emotion regulation, such as anxiety disorders and depression, as well as in the mechanism of antidepressant action. Here, we investigated how persistent alterations in brain 5-HT availability affect autoinhibition in two genetically modified mouse models lacking critical mediators of serotonergic transmission: 5-HT transporter knockout (Sert -/- and tryptophan hydroxylase-2 knockout (Tph2 -/- mice. The degree of autoinhibition was assessed by loose-seal cell-attached recording in DRN slices. First, application of the 5-HT1A-selective agonist R(+-8-hydroxy-2-(di-n-propylaminotetralin showed mild sensitization and marked desensitization of 5-HT1A receptors in Tph2 -/- mice and Sert -/- mice, respectively. While 5-HT neurons from Tph2 -/- mice did not display autoinhibition in response to L-tryptophan, autoinhibition of these neurons was unaltered in Sert -/- mice despite marked desensitization of their 5-HT1A autoreceptors. When the Tph2-dependent 5-HT synthesis step was bypassed by application of 5-hydroxy-L-tryptophan (5-HTP, neurons from both Tph2 -/- and Sert -/- mice decreased their firing rates at significantly lower concentrations of 5-HTP compared to wildtype controls. Our findings demonstrate that, as opposed to the prevalent view, sensitivity of somatodendritic 5-HT1A receptors does not predict the magnitude of 5-HT neuron autoinhibition. Changes in 5-HT1A receptor sensitivity may rather be seen as an adaptive mechanism to keep autoinhibition functioning in response to extremely altered levels of extracellular 5-HT resulting from targeted inactivation of mediators of serotonergic signaling.

  17. Serotonin neuron development: shaping molecular and structural identities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deneris, Evan; Gaspar, Patricia

    2018-01-01

    The continuing fascination with serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT) as a nervous system chemical messenger began with its discovery in the brains of mammals in 1953. Among the many reasons for this decades-long interest is that the small numbers of neurons that make 5-HT influence the excitability of neural circuits in nearly every region of the brain and spinal cord. A further reason is that 5-HT dysfunction has been linked to a range of psychiatric and neurological disorders many of which have a neurodevelopmental component. This has led to intense interest in understanding 5-HT neuron development with the aim of determining whether early alterations in their generation lead to brain disease susceptibility. Here, we present an overview of the neuroanatomical organization of vertebrate 5-HT neurons, their neurogenesis, and prodigious axonal architectures, which enables the expansive reach of 5-HT neuromodulation in the central nervous system. We review recent findings that have revealed the molecular basis for the tremendous diversity of 5-HT neuron subtypes, the impact of environmental factors on 5-HT neuron development, and how 5-HT axons are topographically organized through disparate signaling pathways. We summarize studies of the gene regulatory networks that control the differentiation, maturation, and maintenance of 5-HT neurons. These studies show that the regulatory factors controlling acquisition of 5-HT-type transmitter identity continue to play critical roles in the functional maturation and the maintenance of 5-HT neurons. New insights are presented into how continuously expressed 5-HT regulatory factors control 5-HT neurons at different stages of life and how the regulatory networks themselves are maintained. WIREs Dev Biol 2018, 7:e301. doi: 10.1002/wdev.301 This article is categorized under: Nervous System Development > Vertebrates: General Principles Gene Expression and Transcriptional Hierarchies > Gene Networks and Genomics Gene Expression and

  18. Hyperpolarization-activated current (In is reduced in hippocampal neurons from Gabra5-/- mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert P Bonin

    Full Text Available Changes in the expression of γ-aminobutyric acid type A (GABAA receptors can either drive or mediate homeostatic alterations in neuronal excitability. A homeostatic relationship between α5 subunit-containing GABAA (α5GABAA receptors that generate a tonic inhibitory conductance, and HCN channels that generate a hyperpolarization-activated cation current (Ih was recently described for cortical neurons, where a reduction in Ih was accompanied by a reciprocal increase in the expression of α5GABAA receptors resulting in the preservation of dendritosomatic synaptic function. Here, we report that in mice that lack the α5 subunit gene (Gabra5-/-, cultured embryonic hippocampal pyramidal neurons and ex vivo CA1 hippocampal neurons unexpectedly exhibited a decrease in Ih current density (by 40% and 28%, respectively, compared with neurons from wild-type (WT mice. The resting membrane potential and membrane hyperpolarization induced by blockade of Ih with ZD-7288 were similar in cultured WT and Gabra5-/- neurons. In contrast, membrane hyperpolarization measured after a train of action potentials was lower in Gabra5-/- neurons than in WT neurons. Also, membrane impedance measured in response to low frequency stimulation was greater in cultured Gabra5-/- neurons. Finally, the expression of HCN1 protein that generates Ih was reduced by 41% in the hippocampus of Gabra5-/- mice. These data indicate that loss of a tonic GABAergic inhibitory conductance was followed by a compensatory reduction in Ih. The results further suggest that the maintenance of resting membrane potential is preferentially maintained in mature and immature hippocampal neurons through the homeostatic co-regulation of structurally and biophysically distinct cation and anion channels.

  19. Are dragon-king neuronal avalanches dungeons for self-organized brain activity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Arcangelis, L.

    2012-05-01

    Recent experiments have detected a novel form of spontaneous neuronal activity both in vitro and in vivo: neuronal avalanches. The statistical properties of this activity are typical of critical phenomena, with power laws characterizing the distributions of avalanche size and duration. A critical behaviour for the spontaneous brain activity has important consequences on stimulated activity and learning. Very interestingly, these statistical properties can be altered in significant ways in epilepsy and by pharmacological manipulations. In particular, there can be an increase in the number of large events anticipated by the power law, referred to herein as dragon-king avalanches. This behaviour, as verified by numerical models, can originate from a number of different mechanisms. For instance, it is observed experimentally that the emergence of a critical behaviour depends on the subtle balance between excitatory and inhibitory mechanisms acting in the system. Perturbing this balance, by increasing either synaptic excitation or the incidence of depolarized neuronal up-states causes frequent dragon-king avalanches. Conversely, an unbalanced GABAergic inhibition or long periods of low activity in the network give rise to sub-critical behaviour. Moreover, the existence of power laws, common to other stochastic processes, like earthquakes or solar flares, suggests that correlations are relevant in these phenomena. The dragon-king avalanches may then also be the expression of pathological correlations leading to frequent avalanches encompassing all neurons. We will review the statistics of neuronal avalanches in experimental systems. We then present numerical simulations of a neuronal network model introducing within the self-organized criticality framework ingredients from the physiology of real neurons, as the refractory period, synaptic plasticity and inhibitory synapses. The avalanche critical behaviour and the role of dragon-king avalanches will be discussed in

  20. Regulation of Neuronal Protein Trafficking and Translocation by SUMOylation

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    Jeremy M. Henley

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Post-translational modifications of proteins are essential for cell function. Covalent modification by SUMO (small ubiquitin-like modifier plays a role in multiple cell processes, including transcriptional regulation, DNA damage repair, protein localization and trafficking. Factors affecting protein localization and trafficking are particularly crucial in neurons because of their polarization, morphological complexity and functional specialization. SUMOylation has emerged as a major mediator of intranuclear and nucleo-cytoplasmic translocations of proteins involved in critical pathways such as circadian rhythm, apoptosis and protein degradation. In addition, SUMO-regulated re-localization of extranuclear proteins is required to sustain neuronal excitability and synaptic transmission. Thus, SUMOylation is a key arbiter of neuronal viability and function. Here, we provide an overview of recent advances in our understanding of regulation of neuronal protein localization and translocation by SUMO and highlight exciting areas of ongoing research.

  1. PRRT2 controls neuronal excitability by negatively modulating Na+ channel 1.2/1.6 activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fruscione, Floriana; Valente, Pierluigi; Sterlini, Bruno; Romei, Alessandra; Baldassari, Simona; Fadda, Manuela; Prestigio, Cosimo; Giansante, Giorgia; Sartorelli, Jacopo; Rossi, Pia; Rubio, Alicia; Gambardella, Antonio; Nieus, Thierry; Broccoli, Vania; Fassio, Anna; Baldelli, Pietro; Corradi, Anna; Zara, Federico; Benfenati, Fabio

    2018-04-01

    -dependent Na+ channels in homozygous PRRT2 knockout human and mouse neurons and that, in addition to the reported synaptic functions, PRRT2 is an important negative modulator of Nav1.2 and Nav1.6 channels. Given the predominant paroxysmal character of PRRT2-linked diseases, the disturbance in cellular excitability by lack of negative modulation of Na+ channels appears as the key pathogenetic mechanism.

  2. PRRT2 controls neuronal excitability by negatively modulating Na+ channel 1.2/1.6 activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fruscione, Floriana; Valente, Pierluigi; Sterlini, Bruno; Romei, Alessandra; Baldassari, Simona; Fadda, Manuela; Prestigio, Cosimo; Giansante, Giorgia; Sartorelli, Jacopo; Rossi, Pia; Rubio, Alicia; Gambardella, Antonio; Nieus, Thierry; Broccoli, Vania; Fassio, Anna; Baldelli, Pietro; Corradi, Anna; Zara, Federico

    2018-01-01

    voltage-dependent Na+ channels in homozygous PRRT2 knockout human and mouse neurons and that, in addition to the reported synaptic functions, PRRT2 is an important negative modulator of Nav1.2 and Nav1.6 channels. Given the predominant paroxysmal character of PRRT2-linked diseases, the disturbance in cellular excitability by lack of negative modulation of Na+ channels appears as the key pathogenetic mechanism. PMID:29554219

  3. Computational model of neuron-astrocyte interactions during focal seizure generation

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    Davide eReato

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Empirical research in the last decade revealed that astrocytes can respond to neurotransmitters with Ca2+ elevations and generate feedback signals to neurons which modulate synaptic transmission and neuronal excitability. This discovery changed our basic understanding of brain function and provided new perspectives for how astrocytes can participate not only to information processing, but also to the genesis of brain disorders, such as epilepsy. Epilepsy is a neurological disorder characterized by recurrent seizures that can arise focally at restricted areas and propagate throughout the brain. Studies in brain slice models suggest that astrocytes contribute to epileptiform activity by increasing neuronal excitability through a Ca2+-dependent release of glutamate. The underlying mechanism remains, however, unclear. In this study, we implemented a parsimonious network model of neurons and astrocytes. The model consists of excitatory and inhibitory neurons described by Izhikevich's neuron dynamics. The experimentally observed Ca2+ change in astrocytes in response to neuronal activity was modeled with linear equations. We considered that glutamate is released from astrocytes above certain intracellular Ca2+ concentrations thus providing a non-linear positive feedback signal to neurons. Propagating seizure-like ictal discharges (IDs were reliably evoked in our computational model by repeatedly exciting a small area of the network, which replicates experimental results in a slice model of focal ID in entorhinal cortex. We found that the threshold of focal ID generation was lowered when an excitatory feedback-loop between astrocytes and neurons was included. Simulations show that astrocytes can contribute to ID generation by directly affecting the excitatory/inhibitory balance of the neuronal network. Our model can be used to obtain mechanistic insights into the distinct contributions of the different signaling pathways to the generation and

  4. Loss of spatacsin function alters lysosomal lipid clearance leading to upper and lower motor neuron degeneration.

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    Branchu, Julien; Boutry, Maxime; Sourd, Laura; Depp, Marine; Leone, Céline; Corriger, Alexandrine; Vallucci, Maeva; Esteves, Typhaine; Matusiak, Raphaël; Dumont, Magali; Muriel, Marie-Paule; Santorelli, Filippo M; Brice, Alexis; El Hachimi, Khalid Hamid; Stevanin, Giovanni; Darios, Frédéric

    2017-06-01

    Mutations in SPG11 account for the most common form of autosomal recessive hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP), characterized by a gait disorder associated with various brain alterations. Mutations in the same gene are also responsible for rare forms of Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT) disease and progressive juvenile-onset amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). To elucidate the physiopathological mechanisms underlying these human pathologies, we disrupted the Spg11 gene in mice by inserting stop codons in exon 32, mimicking the most frequent mutations found in patients. The Spg11 knockout mouse developed early-onset motor impairment and cognitive deficits. These behavioral deficits were associated with progressive brain atrophy with the loss of neurons in the primary motor cortex, cerebellum and hippocampus, as well as with accumulation of dystrophic axons in the corticospinal tract. Spinal motor neurons also degenerated and this was accompanied by fragmentation of neuromuscular junctions and muscle atrophy. This new Spg11 knockout mouse therefore recapitulates the full range of symptoms associated with SPG11 mutations observed in HSP, ALS and CMT patients. Examination of the cellular alterations observed in this model suggests that the loss of spatacsin leads to the accumulation of lipids in lysosomes by perturbing their clearance from these organelles. Altogether, our results link lysosomal dysfunction and lipid metabolism to neurodegeneration and pinpoint a critical role of spatacsin in lipid turnover. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Leader neurons in population bursts of 2D living neural networks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eckmann, J-P; Zbinden, Cyrille; Jacobi, Shimshon; Moses, Elisha; Marom, Shimon

    2008-01-01

    Eytan and Marom (2006 J. Neurosci. 26 8465-76) recently showed that the spontaneous bursting activity of rat neuron cultures includes 'first-to-fire' cells that consistently fire earlier than others. Here, we analyze the behavior of these neurons in long-term recordings of spontaneous activity of rat hippocampal and rat cortical neuron cultures from three different laboratories. We identify precursor events that may either subside ('aborted bursts') or can lead to a full-blown burst ('pre-bursts'). We find that the activation in the pre-burst typically has a first neuron ('leader'), followed by a localized response in its neighborhood. Locality is diminished in the bursts themselves. The long-term dynamics of the leaders is relatively robust, evolving with a half-life of 23-34 h. Stimulation of the culture alters the leader distribution, but the distribution stabilizes within about 1 h. We show that the leaders carry information about the identity of the burst, as measured by the signature of the number of spikes per neuron in a burst. The number of spikes from leaders in the first few spikes of a precursor event is furthermore shown to be predictive with regard to the transition into a burst (pre-burst versus aborted burst). We conclude that the leaders play a role in the development of the bursts and conjecture that they are part of an underlying sub-network that is excited first and then acts as a nucleation center for the burst

  6. Astrocytic actions on extrasynaptic neuronal currents

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    Balazs ePal

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available In the last few decades, knowledge about astrocytic functions has significantly increased. It was demonstrated that astrocytes are not passive elements of the central nervous system, but active partners of neurons. There is a growing body of knowledge about the calcium excitability of astrocytes, the actions of different gliotransmitters and their release mechanisms, as well as the participation of astrocytes in the regulation of synaptic functions and their contribution to synaptic plasticity. However, astrocytic functions are even more complex than being a partner of the 'tripartite synapse', as they can influence extrasynaptic neuronal currents either by releasing substances or regulating ambient neurotransmitter levels. Several types of currents or changes of membrane potential with different kinetics and via different mechanisms can be elicited by astrocytic activity. Astrocyte-dependent phasic or tonic, inward or outward currents were described in several brain areas. Such currents, together with the synaptic actions of astrocytes, can contribute to neuromodulatory mechanisms, neurosensory and –secretory processes, cortical oscillatory activity, memory and learning or overall neuronal excitability. This mini-review is an attempt to give a brief summary of astrocyte-dependent extrasynaptic neuronal currents and their possible functional significance.

  7. Stress and Sucrose Intake Modulate Neuronal Activity in the Anterior Hypothalamic Area in Rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitra, Arojit; Guèvremont, Geneviève; Timofeeva, Elena

    2016-01-01

    The anterior hypothalamic area (AHA) is an important integrative relay structure for a variety of autonomic, endocrine, and behavioral responses including feeding behavior and response to stress. However, changes in the activity of the AHA neurons during stress and feeding in freely moving rats are not clear. The present study investigated the firing rate and burst activity of neurons in the central nucleus of the AHA (cAHA) during sucrose intake in non-stressful conditions and after acute stress in freely behaving rats. Rats were implanted with micro-electrodes into the cAHA, and extracellular multi-unit activity was recorded during 1-h access to 10% sucrose in non-stressful conditions or after acute foot shock stress. Acute stress significantly reduced sucrose intake, total sucrose lick number, and lick frequency in licking clusters, and increased inter-lick intervals. At the cluster start (CS) of sucrose licking, the cAHA neurons increased (CS-excited, 20% of the recorded neurons), decreased (CS-inhibited, 42% of the neurons) or did not change (CS-nonresponsive, 38% of the neurons) their firing rate. Stress resulted in a significant increase in the firing rate of the CS-inhibited neurons by decreasing inter-spike intervals within the burst firing of these neurons. This increase in the stress-induced firing rate of the CS-inhibited neurons was accompanied by a disruption of the correlation between the firing rate of CS-inhibited and CS-nonresponsive neurons that was observed in non-stressful conditions. Stress did not affect the firing rate of the CS-excited and CS-nonresponsive neurons. However, stress changed the pattern of burst firing of the CS-excited and CS-nonresponsive neurons by decreasing and increasing the burst number in the CS-excited and CS-nonresponsive neurons, respectively. These results suggest that the cAHA neurons integrate the signals related to stress and intake of palatable food and play a role in the stress- and eating-related circuitry.

  8. Orexin/Hypocretin and Organizing Principles for a Diversity of Wake-Promoting Neurons in the Brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schöne, Cornelia; Burdakov, Denis

    2017-01-01

    An enigmatic feature of behavioural state control is the rich diversity of wake-promoting neural systems. This diversity has been rationalized as 'robustness via redundancy', wherein wakefulness control is not critically dependent on one type of neuron or molecule. Studies of the brain orexin/hypocretin system challenge this view by demonstrating that wakefulness control fails upon loss of this neurotransmitter system. Since orexin neurons signal arousal need, and excite other wake-promoting neurons, their actions illuminate nonredundant principles of arousal control. Here, we suggest such principles by reviewing the orexin system from a collective viewpoint of biology, physics and engineering. Orexin peptides excite other arousal-promoting neurons (noradrenaline, histamine, serotonin, acetylcholine neurons), either by activating mixed-cation conductances or by inhibiting potassium conductances. Ohm's law predicts that these opposite conductance changes will produce opposite effects on sensitivity of neuronal excitability to current inputs, thus enabling orexin to differentially control input-output gain of its target networks. Orexin neurons also produce other transmitters, including glutamate. When orexin cells fire, glutamate-mediated downstream excitation displays temporal decay, but orexin-mediated excitation escalates, as if orexin transmission enabled arousal controllers to compute a time integral of arousal need. Since the anatomical and functional architecture of the orexin system contains negative feedback loops (e.g. orexin ➔ histamine ➔ noradrenaline/serotonin-orexin), such computations may stabilize wakefulness via integral feedback, a basic engineering strategy for set point control in uncertain environments. Such dynamic behavioural control requires several distinct wake-promoting modules, which perform nonredundant transformations of arousal signals and are connected in feedback loops.

  9. Modulation of visual cortical excitability by working memory: effect of luminance contrast of mental imagery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zaira eCattaneo

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Although much is known about the impact of stimulus properties such as luminance contrast, spatial frequency and orientation on visually evoked neural activity, much less is known about how they modulate neural activity when they are properties of a mental image held in working memory (WM. Here we addressed this question by investigating how a parametric manipulation of an imagined stimulus attribute affects neuronal excitability in the early visual cortex. We manipulated luminance contrast, a stimulus property known to strongly affect the magnitude of neuronal responses in early visual areas. Luminance contrast modulated neuronal excitability, as assessed by the frequency of phosphenes induced by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS with the exact nature of this modulation depending on TMS intensity. These results point to a strong overlap in the neuronal processes underlying visual perception and mental imagery: not only does WM maintenance selectively engage neurons which are tuned to the maintained attribute (as has previously been shown, but the extent to which those neurons are activated depends on the luminance contrast (as is the case with visually-evoked responses. From a methodological viewpoint, these results suggest that assessment of visual cortical excitability using TMS is affected by the TMS intensity used to probe the neuronal population.

  10. Effects of acute and chronic administration of neurosteroid dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate on neuronal excitability in mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Svob Strac D

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Dubravka Svob Strac,1 Josipa Vlainic,1 Janko Samardzic,2 Julija Erhardt,3 Zeljka Krsnik41Laboratory for Molecular Neuropsychiatry, Division of Molecular Medicine, Rudjer Boskovic Institute, Zagreb, Croatia; 2Institute of Pharmacology, Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology, Medical Faculty, University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia; 3Department of Animal Physiology, Faculty of Science, University of Zagreb, 4Croatian Institute for Brain Research, Department of Neuroscience, School of Medicine, University of Zagreb, Zagreb, CroatiaBackground: Neurosteroid dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS has been associated with important brain functions, including neuronal survival, memory, and behavior, showing therapeutic potential in various neuropsychiatric and cognitive disorders. However, the antagonistic effects of DHEAS on γ-amino-butyric acidA receptors and its facilitatory action on glutamatergic neurotransmission might lead to enhanced brain excitability and seizures and thus limit DHEAS therapeutic applications. The aim of this study was to investigate possible age and sex differences in the neuronal excitability of the mice following acute and chronic DHEAS administration.Methods: DHEAS was administered intraperitoneally in male and female adult and old mice either acutely or repeatedly once daily for 4 weeks in a 10 mg/kg dose. To investigate the potential proconvulsant properties of DHEAS, we studied the effects of acute and chronic DHEAS treatment on picrotoxin-, pentylentetrazole-, and N-methyl-d-aspartate-induced seizures in mice. The effects of acute and chronic DHEAS administration on the locomotor activity, motor coordination, and body weight of the mice were also studied. We also investigated the effects of DHEAS treatment on [3H]flunitrazepam binding to the mouse brain membranes.Results: DHEAS did not modify the locomotor activity, motor coordination, body weight, and brain [3H]flunitrazepam binding of male and female mice. The results

  11. Deletion of Rictor in catecholaminergic neurons alters locomotor activity and ingestive behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaska, Sophia; Brunk, Rebecca; Bali, Vedrana; Kechner, Megan; Mazei-Robison, Michelle S

    2017-05-01

    While the etiology of depression is not fully understood, increasing evidence from animal models suggests a role for the ventral tegmental area (VTA) in pathogenesis. In this paper, we investigate the potential role of VTA mechanistic target of rapamycin 2 (TORC2) signaling in mediating susceptibility to chronic social defeat stress (CSDS), a well-established mouse model of depression. Utilizing genetic and viral knockout of Rictor (rapamycin-insensitive companion of target of rapamycin), a requisite component of TORC2, we demonstrate that decreasing Rictor-dependent TORC2 signaling in catecholaminergic neurons, or within the VTA specifically, does not alter susceptibility to CSDS. Opiate abuse and mood disorders are often comorbid, and previous data demonstrate a role for VTA TORC2 in mediating opiate reward. Thus, we also investigated its potential role in mediating changes in opiate reward following CSDS. Catecholaminergic deletion of Rictor increases water, sucrose, and morphine intake but not preference in a two-bottle choice assay in stress-naïve mice, and these effects are maintained after stress. VTA-specific knockout of Rictor increases water and sucrose intake after physical CSDS, but does not alter consummatory behavior in the absence of stress. These findings suggest a novel role for TORC2 in mediating stress-induced changes in consummatory behaviors that may contribute to some aspects of mood disorders. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Acid-sensing ion channels expression, identity and role in the excitability of the cochlear afferent neurons

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    Antonia eGonzález-Garrido

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs are activated by an increase in the extracellular proton concentration. There are four genes (ASIC1-4 that encode six subunits, and they are involved in diverse neuronal functions, such as mechanosensation, learning and memory, nociception, and modulation of retinal function. In this study, we characterize the ASIC currents of spiral ganglion neurons (SGNs. These ASIC currents are primarily carried by Na+, exhibit fast activation and desensitization, display a pH50 of 6.2 and are blocked by amiloride, indicating that these are ASIC currents. The ASIC currents were further characterized using several pharmacological tools. Gadolinium and acetylsalicylic acid reduced these currents, and FMRFamide, zinc (at high concentrations and N,N,N’,N’–tetrakis-(2-piridilmetil-etilendiamina (TPEN increased them, indicating that functional ASICs are composed of the subunits ASIC1, ASIC2 and ASIC3. Neomycin and streptomycin reduced the desensitization rate of the ASIC current in SGNs, indicating that ASICs may contribute to the ototoxic action of aminoglycosides. RT-PCR of the spiral ganglion revealed significant expression of all ASIC subunits. By immunohistochemistry the expression of the ASIC1a, ASIC2a, ASIC2b and ASIC3 subunits was detected in SGNs. Although only a few SGNs exhibited action potential firing in response to an acidic stimulus, protons in the extracellular solution modulated SGN activity during sinusoidal stimulation. Our results show that protons modulate the excitability of SGNs via ASICs.

  13. Acid-Sensing Ion Channels Expression, Identity and Role in the Excitability of the Cochlear Afferent Neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Garrido, Antonia; Vega, Rosario; Mercado, Francisco; López, Iván A.; Soto, Enrique

    2015-01-01

    Acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) are activated by an increase in the extracellular proton concentration. There are four genes (ASIC1-4) that encode six subunits, and they are involved in diverse neuronal functions, such as mechanosensation, learning and memory, nociception, and modulation of retinal function. In this study, we characterize the ASIC currents of spiral ganglion neurons (SGNs). These ASIC currents are primarily carried by Na+, exhibit fast activation and desensitization, display a pH50 of 6.2 and are blocked by amiloride, indicating that these are ASIC currents. The ASIC currents were further characterized using several pharmacological tools. Gadolinium and acetylsalicylic acid reduced these currents, and FMRFamide, zinc (at high concentrations) and N,N,N’,N’–tetrakis-(2-piridilmetil)-ethylenediamine increased them, indicating that functional ASICs are composed of the subunits ASIC1, ASIC2, and ASIC3. Neomycin and streptomycin reduced the desensitization rate of the ASIC current in SGNs, indicating that ASICs may contribute to the ototoxic action of aminoglycosides. RT-PCR of the spiral ganglion revealed significant expression of all ASIC subunits. By immunohistochemistry the expression of the ASIC1a, ASIC2a, ASIC2b, and ASIC3 subunits was detected in SGNs. Although only a few SGNs exhibited action potential firing in response to an acidic stimulus, protons in the extracellular solution modulated SGN activity during sinusoidal stimulation. Our results show that protons modulate the excitability of SGNs via ASICs. PMID:26733809

  14. Layer 5 Callosal Parvalbumin-Expressing Neurons: A Distinct Functional Group of GABAergic Neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zurita, Hector; Feyen, Paul L C; Apicella, Alfonso Junior

    2018-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that parvalbumin-expressing neurons (CC-Parv neurons) connect the two hemispheres of motor and sensory areas via the corpus callosum, and are a functional part of the cortical circuit. Here we test the hypothesis that layer 5 CC-Parv neurons possess anatomical and molecular mechanisms which dampen excitability and modulate the gating of interhemispheric inhibition. In order to investigate this hypothesis we use viral tracing to determine the anatomical and electrophysiological properties of layer 5 CC-Parv and parvalbumin-expressing (Parv) neurons of the mouse auditory cortex (AC). Here we show that layer 5 CC-Parv neurons had larger dendritic fields characterized by longer dendrites that branched farther from the soma, whereas layer 5 Parv neurons had smaller dendritic fields characterized by shorter dendrites that branched nearer to the soma. The layer 5 CC-Parv neurons are characterized by delayed action potential (AP) responses to threshold currents, lower firing rates, and lower instantaneous frequencies compared to the layer 5 Parv neurons. Kv1.1 containing K + channels are the main source of the AP repolarization of the layer 5 CC-Parv and have a major role in determining both the spike delayed response, firing rate and instantaneous frequency of these neurons.

  15. γ-Secretase modulators reduce endogenous amyloid β42 levels in human neural progenitor cells without altering neuronal differentiation

    Science.gov (United States)

    D’Avanzo, Carla; Sliwinski, Christopher; Wagner, Steven L.; Tanzi, Rudolph E.; Kim, Doo Yeon; Kovacs, Dora M.

    2015-01-01

    Soluble γ-secretase modulators (SGSMs) selectively decrease toxic amyloid β (Aβ) peptides (Aβ42). However, their effect on the physiologic functions of γ-secretase has not been tested in human model systems. γ-Secretase regulates fate determination of neural progenitor cells. Thus, we studied the impact of SGSMs on the neuronal differentiation of ReNcell VM (ReN) human neural progenitor cells (hNPCs). Quantitative PCR analysis showed that treatment of neurosphere-like ReN cell aggregate cultures with γ-secretase inhibitors (GSIs), but not SGSMs, induced a 2- to 4-fold increase in the expression of the neuronal markers Tuj1 and doublecortin. GSI treatment also induced neuronal marker protein expression, as shown by Western blot analysis. In the same conditions, SGSM treatment selectively reduced endogenous Aβ42 levels by ∼80%. Mechanistically, we found that Notch target gene expressions were selectively inhibited by a GSI, not by SGSM treatment. We can assert, for the first time, that SGSMs do not affect the neuronal differentiation of hNPCs while selectively decreasing endogenous Aβ42 levels in the same conditions. Our results suggest that our hNPC differentiation system can serve as a useful model to test the impact of GSIs and SGSMs on both endogenous Aβ levels and γ-secretase physiologic functions including endogenous Notch signaling.—D’Avanzo, C., Sliwinski, C., Wagner, S. L., Tanzi, R. E., Kim, D. Y., Kovacs, D. M. γ-Secretase modulators reduce endogenous amyloid β42 levels in human neural progenitor cells without altering neuronal differentiation. PMID:25903103

  16. GnRH Neuron Activity and Pituitary Response in Estradiol-Induced vs Proestrous Luteinizing Hormone Surges in Female Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silveira, Marina A; Burger, Laura L; DeFazio, R Anthony; Wagenmaker, Elizabeth R; Moenter, Suzanne M

    2017-02-01

    During the female reproductive cycle, estradiol exerts negative and positive feedback at both the central level to alter gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) release and at the pituitary to affect response to GnRH. Many studies of the neurobiologic mechanisms underlying estradiol feedback have been done on ovariectomized, estradiol-replaced (OVX+E) mice. In this model, GnRH neuron activity depends on estradiol and time of day, increasing in estradiol-treated mice in the late afternoon, coincident with a daily luteinizing hormone (LH) surge. Amplitude of this surge appears lower than in proestrous mice, perhaps because other ovarian factors are not replaced. We hypothesized GnRH neuron activity is greater during the proestrous-preovulatory surge than the estradiol-induced surge. GnRH neuron activity was monitored by extracellular recordings from fluorescently tagged GnRH neurons in brain slices in the late afternoon from diestrous, proestrous, and OVX+E mice. Mean GnRH neuron firing rate was low on diestrus; firing rate was similarly increased in proestrous and OVX+E mice. Bursts of action potentials have been associated with hormone release in neuroendocrine systems. Examination of the patterning of action potentials revealed a shift toward longer burst duration in proestrous mice, whereas intervals between spikes were shorter in OVX+E mice. LH response to an early afternoon injection of GnRH was greater in proestrous than diestrous or OVX+E mice. These observations suggest the lower LH surge amplitude observed in the OVX+E model is likely not attributable to altered mean GnRH neuron activity, but because of reduced pituitary sensitivity, subtle shifts in action potential pattern, and/or excitation-secretion coupling in GnRH neurons. Copyright © 2017 by the Endocrine Society.

  17. [Frontiers in Live Bone Imaging Researches. In vivo imaging of neuron and glia].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wake, Hiroaki; Kato, Daisuke

    2015-06-01

    Glial cells originate the Greek word'glue'had traditionally been only thought as supporting cells for neurons. Because glial cells are electrically non-excitable, neuroscience researchers have focused on elucidation of excitable cell properties, neuron. Recent advanced optical methods lead us to observe glial structure, motility and their function in normal physiological conditions. These approaches let us to know that they are not just the supporting cells for neuron but could receive signal from neurons through receptors for neurotransmitters and to regulate neuronal functions, thus modulating behavior phenotype. Such studies also suggest that glial cells are highly dynamic and actively maintain brain homeostasis. Here, we review physiological function of glial cells through a new perspective clarified by innovations of imaging technology including two-photon microscope.

  18. Asynchronous Rate Chaos in Spiking Neuronal Circuits.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Omri Harish

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available The brain exhibits temporally complex patterns of activity with features similar to those of chaotic systems. Theoretical studies over the last twenty years have described various computational advantages for such regimes in neuronal systems. Nevertheless, it still remains unclear whether chaos requires specific cellular properties or network architectures, or whether it is a generic property of neuronal circuits. We investigate the dynamics of networks of excitatory-inhibitory (EI spiking neurons with random sparse connectivity operating in the regime of balance of excitation and inhibition. Combining Dynamical Mean-Field Theory with numerical simulations, we show that chaotic, asynchronous firing rate fluctuations emerge generically for sufficiently strong synapses. Two different mechanisms can lead to these chaotic fluctuations. One mechanism relies on slow I-I inhibition which gives rise to slow subthreshold voltage and rate fluctuations. The decorrelation time of these fluctuations is proportional to the time constant of the inhibition. The second mechanism relies on the recurrent E-I-E feedback loop. It requires slow excitation but the inhibition can be fast. In the corresponding dynamical regime all neurons exhibit rate fluctuations on the time scale of the excitation. Another feature of this regime is that the population-averaged firing rate is substantially smaller in the excitatory population than in the inhibitory population. This is not necessarily the case in the I-I mechanism. Finally, we discuss the neurophysiological and computational significance of our results.

  19. Asynchronous Rate Chaos in Spiking Neuronal Circuits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harish, Omri; Hansel, David

    2015-01-01

    The brain exhibits temporally complex patterns of activity with features similar to those of chaotic systems. Theoretical studies over the last twenty years have described various computational advantages for such regimes in neuronal systems. Nevertheless, it still remains unclear whether chaos requires specific cellular properties or network architectures, or whether it is a generic property of neuronal circuits. We investigate the dynamics of networks of excitatory-inhibitory (EI) spiking neurons with random sparse connectivity operating in the regime of balance of excitation and inhibition. Combining Dynamical Mean-Field Theory with numerical simulations, we show that chaotic, asynchronous firing rate fluctuations emerge generically for sufficiently strong synapses. Two different mechanisms can lead to these chaotic fluctuations. One mechanism relies on slow I-I inhibition which gives rise to slow subthreshold voltage and rate fluctuations. The decorrelation time of these fluctuations is proportional to the time constant of the inhibition. The second mechanism relies on the recurrent E-I-E feedback loop. It requires slow excitation but the inhibition can be fast. In the corresponding dynamical regime all neurons exhibit rate fluctuations on the time scale of the excitation. Another feature of this regime is that the population-averaged firing rate is substantially smaller in the excitatory population than in the inhibitory population. This is not necessarily the case in the I-I mechanism. Finally, we discuss the neurophysiological and computational significance of our results. PMID:26230679

  20. AgRP neurons regulate development of dopamine neuronal plasticity and nonfood-associated behaviors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dietrich, Marcelo O; Bober, Jeremy; Ferreira, Jozélia G; Tellez, Luis A; Mineur, Yann S; Souza, Diogo O; Gao, Xiao-Bing; Picciotto, Marina R; Araújo, Ivan; Liu, Zhong-Wu; Horvath, Tamas L

    2012-01-01

    It is not known whether behaviors unrelated to feeding are affected by hypothalamic regulators of hunger. We found that impairment of Agouti-related protein (AgRP) circuitry by either Sirt1 knockdown in AgRP-expressing neurons or early postnatal ablation of these neurons increased exploratory behavior and enhanced responses to cocaine. In AgRP circuit–impaired mice, ventral tegmental dopamine neurons exhibited enhanced spike timing–dependent long-term potentiation, altered amplitude of miniature postsynaptic currents and elevated dopamine in basal forebrain. Thus, AgRP neurons determine the set point of the reward circuitry and associated behaviors. PMID:22729177

  1. Maternal creatine supplementation affects the morpho-functional development of hippocampal neurons in rat offspring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sartini, S; Lattanzi, D; Ambrogini, P; Di Palma, M; Galati, C; Savelli, D; Polidori, E; Calcabrini, C; Rocchi, M B L; Sestili, P; Cuppini, R

    2016-01-15

    Creatine supplementation has been shown to protect neurons from oxidative damage due to its antioxidant and ergogenic functions. These features have led to the hypothesis of creatine supplementation use during pregnancy as prophylactic treatment to prevent CNS damage, such as hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy. Unfortunately, very little is known on the effects of creatine supplementation during neuron differentiation, while in vitro studies revealed an influence on neuron excitability, leaving the possibility of creatine supplementation during the CNS development an open question. Using a multiple approach, we studied the hippocampal neuron morphological and functional development in neonatal rats born by dams supplemented with 1% creatine in drinking water during pregnancy. CA1 pyramidal neurons of supplemented newborn rats showed enhanced dendritic tree development, increased LTP maintenance, larger evoked-synaptic responses, and higher intrinsic excitability in comparison to controls. Moreover, a faster repolarizing phase of action potential with the appearance of a hyperpolarization were recorded in neurons of the creatine-treated group. Consistently, CA1 neurons of creatine exposed pups exhibited a higher maximum firing frequency than controls. In summary, we found that creatine supplementation during pregnancy positively affects morphological and electrophysiological development of CA1 neurons in offspring rats, increasing neuronal excitability. Altogether, these findings emphasize the need to evaluate the benefits and the safety of maternal intake of creatine in humans. Copyright © 2015 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Control of Excitation/Inhibition Balance in a Hippocampal Circuit by Calcium Sensor Protein Regulation of Presynaptic Calcium Channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nanou, Evanthia; Lee, Amy; Catterall, William A

    2018-05-02

    Activity-dependent regulation controls the balance of synaptic excitation to inhibition in neural circuits, and disruption of this regulation impairs learning and memory and causes many neurological disorders. The molecular mechanisms underlying short-term synaptic plasticity are incompletely understood, and their role in inhibitory synapses remains uncertain. Here we show that regulation of voltage-gated calcium (Ca 2+ ) channel type 2.1 (Ca V 2.1) by neuronal Ca 2+ sensor (CaS) proteins controls synaptic plasticity and excitation/inhibition balance in a hippocampal circuit. Prevention of CaS protein regulation by introducing the IM-AA mutation in Ca V 2.1 channels in male and female mice impairs short-term synaptic facilitation at excitatory synapses of CA3 pyramidal neurons onto parvalbumin (PV)-expressing basket cells. In sharp contrast, the IM-AA mutation abolishes rapid synaptic depression in the inhibitory synapses of PV basket cells onto CA1 pyramidal neurons. These results show that CaS protein regulation of facilitation and inactivation of Ca V 2.1 channels controls the direction of short-term plasticity at these two synapses. Deletion of the CaS protein CaBP1/caldendrin also blocks rapid depression at PV-CA1 synapses, implicating its upregulation of inactivation of Ca V 2.1 channels in control of short-term synaptic plasticity at this inhibitory synapse. Studies of local-circuit function revealed reduced inhibition of CA1 pyramidal neurons by the disynaptic pathway from CA3 pyramidal cells via PV basket cells and greatly increased excitation/inhibition ratio of the direct excitatory input versus indirect inhibitory input from CA3 pyramidal neurons to CA1 pyramidal neurons. This striking defect in local-circuit function may contribute to the dramatic impairment of spatial learning and memory in IM-AA mice. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Many forms of short-term synaptic plasticity in neuronal circuits rely on regulation of presynaptic voltage-gated Ca 2+ (Ca V

  3. H2O2 INDUCES DELAYED HYPEREXCITABILITY IN NUCLEUS TRACTUS SOLITARII NEURONS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ostrowski, Tim D.; Hasser, Eileen M.; Heesch, Cheryl M.; Kline, David D.

    2014-01-01

    Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) is a stable reactive oxygen species and potent neuromodulator of cellular and synaptic activity. Centrally, endogenous H2O2 is elevated during bouts of hypoxia-reoxygenation, a variety of disease states, and aging. The nucleus tractus solitarii (nTS) is the central termination site of visceral afferents for homeostatic reflexes and contributes to reflex alterations during these conditions. We determined the extent to which H2O2 modulates synaptic and membrane properties in nTS neurons in rat brainstem slices. Stimulation of the tractus solitarii (which contains the sensory afferent fibers) evoked synaptic currents that were not altered by 10 – 500 μM H2O2. However, 500 μM H2O2 modulated several intrinsic membrane properties of nTS neurons, including a decrease in input resistance, hyperpolarization of resting membrane potential (RMP) and action potential (AP) threshold (THR), and an initial reduction in AP discharge to depolarizing current. H2O2 increased conductance of barium-sensitive potassium currents, and block of these currents ablated H2O2-induced changes in RMP, input resistance and AP discharge. Following washout of H2O2 AP discharge was enhanced due to depolarization of RMP and a partially maintained hyperpolarization of THR. Hyperexcitability persisted with repeated H2O2 exposure. H2O2 effects on RMP and THR were ablated by intracellular administration of the antioxidant catalase, which was immunohistochemically identified in neurons throughout the nTS. Thus, H2O2 initially reduces excitability of nTS neurons that is followed by sustained hyperexcitability, which may play a profound role in cardiorespiratory reflexes. PMID:24397952

  4. Oral intake of zirconia nanoparticle alters neuronal development and behaviour of Drosophila melanogaster

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mishra, Monalisa; Sabat, Debabrat; Ekka, Basanti; Sahu, Swetapadma; P, Unnikannan; Dash, Priyabrat

    2017-08-01

    Zirconia nanoparticles (ZrO2 NPs) have been extensively used in teeth and bone implants and thus get a chance to interact with the physiological system. The current study investigated the oral administration of various concentrations of ZrO2 NPs synthesized by the hydrothermal method (0.25 to 5.0 mg L-1) on Drosophila physiology and behaviour. The size of the currently studied nanoparticle varies from 10 to 12 nm. ZrO2 NPs accumulated within the gut in a concentration-dependent manner and generate reactive oxygen species (ROS) only at 2.5 and 5.0 mg L-1 concentrations. ROS was detected by nitroblue tetrazolium (NBT) assay and 2',7'-dichlorofluorescein http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20370560 (H2DCF) staining. The ROS toxicity alters the larval gut structure as revealed by DAPI staining. The NP stress of larvae affects the Drosophila development by distressing pupa count and varying the phenotypic changes in sensory organs (eye, thorax bristle, wings). Besides phenotypic changes, flawed climbing behaviour against gravity was seen in ZrO2 NP-treated flies. All together, for the first time, we have reported that a ROS-mediated ZrO2 NP toxicity alters neuronal development and functioning using Drosophila as a model organism. [Figure not available: see fulltext.

  5. Acute action of rotenone on excitability of catecholaminergic neurons in rostral ventrolateral medulla.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Zhaoqiang; Shi, Limin; Du, Xixun; Jiao, Qian; Jiang, Hong

    2017-09-01

    The degeneration of the rostral ventrolateral medulla (RVLM) catecholaminergic neurons was responsible for some cardiovascular symptoms in Parkinson's disease (PD). Our previous study had observed the impairment of these neurons in the early stage of PD in the rotenone-induced PD rat model, but the related mechanisms remain unclear. Rotenone is a mitochondrial inhibitor, influencing the neuronal electrophysiological activity through activation of K-ATP channels that potentially participate in cell death processes. In the present study, effects of rotenone on electrophysiological properties of RVLM catecholaminergic neurons and its underlying mechanisms were investigated. In coronal slices of brain containing the RVLM through patch clamp technique, rotenone (0.5μM) induced gradual postsynaptic inhibition on the spontaneous firing and cell membrane hyperpolarization with outward currents of catecholaminergic neurons. The electrophysiological changes were blocked by glibenclamide (30μM), a blocker of K-ATP channels, and were nearly unchanged by diazoxide (100μM), an opener of K-ATP channels. Our results also showed that effects of rotenone on catecholaminergic neurons including reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation were prevented by pretreatment of coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10, 100μM), a scavenger of ROS. These suggest that rotenone-induced electrophysiological changes of RVLM catecholaminergic neurons are caused by the opening of K-ATP channels, which are partly related to ROS generation. The changes of K-ATP channels might account for the vulnerability of RVLM catecholaminergic neurons. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Energy-efficient neural information processing in individual neurons and neuronal networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Lianchun; Yu, Yuguo

    2017-11-01

    Brains are composed of networks of an enormous number of neurons interconnected with synapses. Neural information is carried by the electrical signals within neurons and the chemical signals among neurons. Generating these electrical and chemical signals is metabolically expensive. The fundamental issue raised here is whether brains have evolved efficient ways of developing an energy-efficient neural code from the molecular level to the circuit level. Here, we summarize the factors and biophysical mechanisms that could contribute to the energy-efficient neural code for processing input signals. The factors range from ion channel kinetics, body temperature, axonal propagation of action potentials, low-probability release of synaptic neurotransmitters, optimal input and noise, the size of neurons and neuronal clusters, excitation/inhibition balance, coding strategy, cortical wiring, and the organization of functional connectivity. Both experimental and computational evidence suggests that neural systems may use these factors to maximize the efficiency of energy consumption in processing neural signals. Studies indicate that efficient energy utilization may be universal in neuronal systems as an evolutionary consequence of the pressure of limited energy. As a result, neuronal connections may be wired in a highly economical manner to lower energy costs and space. Individual neurons within a network may encode independent stimulus components to allow a minimal number of neurons to represent whole stimulus characteristics efficiently. This basic principle may fundamentally change our view of how billions of neurons organize themselves into complex circuits to operate and generate the most powerful intelligent cognition in nature. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. Alterations in the Interplay between Neurons, Astrocytes and Microglia in the Rat Dentate Gyrus in Experimental Models of Neurodegeneration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniele Lana

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The hippocampus is negatively affected by aging and neurodegenerative diseases leading to impaired learning and memory abilities. A diverse series of progressive modifications in the intercellular communication among neurons, astrocytes and microglia occur in the hippocampus during aging or inflammation. A detailed understanding of the neurobiological modifications that contribute to hippocampal dysfunction may reveal new targets for therapeutic intervention. The current study focussed on the interplay between neurons and astroglia in the Granule Layer (GL and the Polymorphic Layer (PL of the Dentate Gyrus (DG of adult, aged and LPS-treated rats. In GL and PL of aged and LPS-treated rats, astrocytes were less numerous than in adult rats. In GL of LPS-treated rats, astrocytes acquired morphological features of reactive astrocytes, such as longer branches than was observed in adult rats. Total and activated microglia increased in the aged and LPS-treated rats, as compared to adult rats. In the GL of aged and LPS-treated rats many neurons were apoptotic. Neurons decreased significantly in GL and PL of aged but not in rats treated with LPS. In PL of aged and LPS-treated rats many damaged neurons were embraced by microglia cells and were infiltrated by branches of astrocyte, which appeared to be bisecting the cell body, forming triads. Reactive microglia had a scavenging activity of dying neurons, as shown by the presence of neuronal debris within their cytoplasm. The levels of the chemokine fractalkine (CX3CL1 increased in hippocampal homogenates of aged rats and rats treated with LPS, and CX3CL1 immunoreactivity colocalized with activated microglia cells. Here we demonstrated that in the DG of aged and LPS-treated rats, astrocytes and microglia cooperate and participate in phagocytosis/phagoptosis of apoptotic granular neurons. The differential expression/activation of astroglia and the alteration of their intercommunication may be responsible for

  8. Dynamics of Phosphoinositide-Dependent Signaling in Sympathetic Neurons

    OpenAIRE

    Kruse, Martin; Vivas, Oscar; Traynor-Kaplan, Alexis; Hille, Bertil

    2016-01-01

    In neurons, loss of plasma membrane phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate [PI(4,5)P2] leads to a decrease in exocytosis and changes in electrical excitability. Restoration of PI(4,5)P2 levels after phospholipase C activation is therefore essential for a return to basal neuronal activity. However, the dynamics of phosphoinositide metabolism have not been analyzed in neurons. We measured dynamic changes of PI(4,5)P2, phosphatidylinositol 4-phosphate, diacylglycerol, inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate...

  9. The interdependence of excitation and inhibition for the control of dynamic breathing rhythms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baertsch, Nathan Andrew; Baertsch, Hans Christopher; Ramirez, Jan Marino

    2018-02-26

    The preBötzinger Complex (preBötC), a medullary network critical for breathing, relies on excitatory interneurons to generate the inspiratory rhythm. Yet, half of preBötC neurons are inhibitory, and the role of inhibition in rhythmogenesis remains controversial. Using optogenetics and electrophysiology in vitro and in vivo, we demonstrate that the intrinsic excitability of excitatory neurons is reduced following large depolarizing inspiratory bursts. This refractory period limits the preBötC to very slow breathing frequencies. Inhibition integrated within the network is required to prevent overexcitation of preBötC neurons, thereby regulating the refractory period and allowing rapid breathing. In vivo, sensory feedback inhibition also regulates the refractory period, and in slowly breathing mice with sensory feedback removed, activity of inhibitory, but not excitatory, neurons restores breathing to physiological frequencies. We conclude that excitation and inhibition are interdependent for the breathing rhythm, because inhibition permits physiological preBötC bursting by controlling refractory properties of excitatory neurons.

  10. Acute intermittent hypoxia and rehabilitative training following cervical spinal injury alters neuronal hypoxia- and plasticity-associated protein expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hassan, Atiq; Arnold, Breanna M; Caine, Sally; Toosi, Behzad M; Verge, Valerie M K; Muir, Gillian D

    2018-01-01

    One of the most promising approaches to improve recovery after spinal cord injury (SCI) is the augmentation of spontaneously occurring plasticity in uninjured neural pathways. Acute intermittent hypoxia (AIH, brief exposures to reduced O2 levels alternating with normal O2 levels) initiates plasticity in respiratory systems and has been shown to improve recovery in respiratory and non-respiratory spinal systems after SCI in experimental animals and humans. Although the mechanism by which AIH elicits its effects after SCI are not well understood, AIH is known to alter protein expression in spinal neurons in uninjured animals. Here, we examine hypoxia- and plasticity-related protein expression using immunofluorescence in spinal neurons in SCI rats that were treated with AIH combined with motor training, a protocol which has been demonstrated to improve recovery of forelimb function in this lesion model. Specifically, we assessed protein expression in spinal neurons from animals with incomplete cervical SCI which were exposed to AIH treatment + motor training either for 1 or 7 days. AIH treatment consisted of 10 episodes of AIH: (5 min 11% O2: 5 min 21% O2) for 7 days beginning at 4 weeks post-SCI. Both 1 or 7 days of AIH treatment + motor training resulted in significantly increased expression of the transcription factor hypoxia-inducible factor-1α (HIF-1α) relative to normoxia-treated controls, in neurons both proximal (cervical) and remote (lumbar) to the SCI. All other markers examined were significantly elevated in the 7 day AIH + motor training group only, at both cervical and lumbar levels. These markers included vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), and phosphorylated and nonphosphorylated forms of the BDNF receptor tropomyosin-related kinase B (TrkB). In summary, AIH induces plasticity at the cellular level after SCI by altering the expression of major plasticity- and hypoxia-related proteins at spinal regions

  11. All-Optical Electrophysiology for Disease Modeling and Pharmacological Characterization of Neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Werley, Christopher A; Brookings, Ted; Upadhyay, Hansini; Williams, Luis A; McManus, Owen B; Dempsey, Graham T

    2017-09-11

    A key challenge for establishing a phenotypic screen for neuronal excitability is measurement of membrane potential changes with high throughput and accuracy. Most approaches for probing excitability rely on low-throughput, invasive methods or lack cell-specific information. These limitations stimulated the development of novel strategies for characterizing the electrical properties of cultured neurons. Among these was the development of optogenetic technologies (Optopatch) that allow for stimulation and recording of membrane voltage signals from cultured neurons with single-cell sensitivity and millisecond temporal resolution. Neuronal activity is elicited using blue light activation of the channelrhodopsin variant 'CheRiff'. Action potentials and synaptic signals are measured with 'QuasAr', a rapid and sensitive voltage-indicating protein with near-infrared fluorescence that scales proportionately with transmembrane potential. This integrated technology of optical stimulation and recording of electrical signals enables investigation of neuronal electrical function with unprecedented scale and precision. © 2017 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Copyright © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

  12. Transmitter modulation of spike-evoked calcium transients in arousal related neurons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kohlmeier, Kristi Anne; Leonard, Christopher S

    2006-01-01

    Nitric oxide synthase (NOS)-containing cholinergic neurons in the laterodorsal tegmentum (LDT) influence behavioral and motivational states through their projections to the thalamus, ventral tegmental area and a brainstem 'rapid eye movement (REM)-induction' site. Action potential-evoked intracel......Nitric oxide synthase (NOS)-containing cholinergic neurons in the laterodorsal tegmentum (LDT) influence behavioral and motivational states through their projections to the thalamus, ventral tegmental area and a brainstem 'rapid eye movement (REM)-induction' site. Action potential......-evoked intracellular calcium transients dampen excitability and stimulate NO production in these neurons. In this study, we investigated the action of several arousal-related neurotransmitters and the role of specific calcium channels in these LDT Ca(2+)-transients by simultaneous whole-cell recording and calcium...... of cholinergic LDT neurons and that inhibition of spike-evoked Ca(2+)-transients is a common action of neurotransmitters that also activate GIRK channels in these neurons. Because spike-evoked calcium influx dampens excitability, our findings suggest that these 'inhibitory' transmitters could boost firing rate...

  13. CaV3.1 isoform of T-type calcium channels supports excitability of rat and mouse ventral tegmental area neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tracy, Matthew E; Tesic, Vesna; Stamenic, Tamara Timic; Joksimovic, Srdjan M; Busquet, Nicolas; Jevtovic-Todorovic, Vesna; Todorovic, Slobodan M

    2018-03-23

    Recent data have implicated voltage-gated calcium channels in the regulation of the excitability of neurons within the mesolimbic reward system. While the attention of most research has centered on high voltage L-type calcium channel activity, the presence and role of the low voltage-gated T-type calcium channel (T-channels) has not been well explored. Hence, we investigated T-channel properties in the neurons of the ventral tegmental area (VTA) utilizing wild-type (WT) rats and mice, Ca V 3.1 knock-out (KO) mice, and TH-eGFP knock-in (KI) rats in acute horizontal brain slices of adolescent animals. In voltage-clamp experiments, we first assessed T-channel activity in WT rats with characteristic properties of voltage-dependent activation and inactivation, as well as characteristic crisscrossing patterns of macroscopic current kinetics. T-current kinetics were similar in WT mice and WT rats but T-currents were abolished in Ca V 3.1 KO mice. In ensuing current-clamp experiments, we observed the presence of hyperpolarization-induced rebound burst firing in a subset of neurons in WT rats, as well as dopaminergic and non-dopaminergic neurons in TH-eGFP KI rats. Following the application of a pan-selective T-channel blocker TTA-P2, rebound bursting was significantly inhibited in all tested cells. In a behavioral assessment, the acute locomotor increase induced by a MK-801 (Dizocilpine) injection in WT mice was abolished in Ca V 3.1 KO mice, suggesting a tangible role for 3.1 T-type channels in drug response. We conclude that pharmacological targeting of Ca V 3.1 isoform of T-channels may be a novel approach for the treatment of disorders of mesolimbic reward system. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  14. Epac activation sensitizes rat sensory neurons via activation of Ras

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shariati, Behzad; Thompson, Eric L.; Nicol, Grant D.; Vasko, Michael R.

    2015-01-01

    Guanine nucleotide exchange factors directly activated by cAMP (Epacs) have emerged as important signaling molecules mediating persistent hypersensitivity in animal models of inflammation, by augmenting the excitability of sensory neurons. Although Epacs activate numerous downstream signaling cascades, the intracellular signaling which mediates Epac-induced sensitization of capsaicin-sensitive sensory neurons remains unknown. Here, we demonstrate that selective activation of Epacs with 8-CPT-2′-O-Me-cAMP-AM (8CPT-AM) increases the number of action potentials (APs) generated by a ramp of depolarizing current and augments the evoked release of calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) from isolated rat sensory neurons. Internal perfusion of capsaicin-sensitive sensory neurons with GDP-βS, substituted for GTP, blocks the ability of 8CPT-AM to increase AP firing, demonstrating that Epac-induced sensitization is G-protein dependent. Treatment with 8CPT-AM activates the small G-proteins Rap1 and Ras in cultures of sensory neurons. Inhibition of Rap1, by internal perfusion of a Rap1-neutralizing antibody or through a reduction in the expression of the protein using shRNA does not alter the Epac-induced enhancement of AP generation or CGRP release, despite the fact that in most other cell types, Epacs act as Rap-GEFs. In contrast, inhibition of Ras through expression of a dominant negative Ras (DN-Ras) or through internal perfusion of a Ras-neutralizing antibody blocks the increase in AP firing and attenuates the increase in the evoked release of CGRP induced by Epac activation. Thus, in this subpopulation of nociceptive sensory neurons, it is the novel interplay between Epacs and Ras, rather than the canonical Epacs and Rap1 pathway, that is critical for mediating Epac-induced sensitization. PMID:26596174

  15. Epac activation sensitizes rat sensory neurons through activation of Ras.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shariati, Behzad; Thompson, Eric L; Nicol, Grant D; Vasko, Michael R

    2016-01-01

    Guanine nucleotide exchange factors directly activated by cAMP (Epacs) have emerged as important signaling molecules mediating persistent hypersensitivity in animal models of inflammation, by augmenting the excitability of sensory neurons. Although Epacs activate numerous downstream signaling cascades, the intracellular signaling which mediates Epac-induced sensitization of capsaicin-sensitive sensory neurons remains unknown. Here, we demonstrate that selective activation of Epacs with 8-CPT-2'-O-Me-cAMP-AM (8CPT-AM) increases the number of action potentials (APs) generated by a ramp of depolarizing current and augments the evoked release of calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) from isolated rat sensory neurons. Internal perfusion of capsaicin-sensitive sensory neurons with GDP-βS, substituted for GTP, blocks the ability of 8CPT-AM to increase AP firing, demonstrating that Epac-induced sensitization is G-protein dependent. Treatment with 8CPT-AM activates the small G-proteins Rap1 and Ras in cultures of sensory neurons. Inhibition of Rap1, by internal perfusion of a Rap1-neutralizing antibody or through a reduction in the expression of the protein using shRNA does not alter the Epac-induced enhancement of AP generation or CGRP release, despite the fact that in most other cell types, Epacs act as Rap-GEFs. In contrast, inhibition of Ras through expression of a dominant negative Ras (DN-Ras) or through internal perfusion of a Ras-neutralizing antibody blocks the increase in AP firing and attenuates the increase in the evoked release of CGRP induced by Epac activation. Thus, in this subpopulation of nociceptive sensory neurons, it is the novel interplay between Epacs and Ras, rather than the canonical Epacs and Rap1 pathway, that is critical for mediating Epac-induced sensitization. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Estrogens modulate ventrolateral ventromedial hypothalamic glucose-inhibited neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ammy M. Santiago

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Objective: Brain regulation of glucose homeostasis is sexually dimorphic; however, the impact sex hormones have on specific neuronal populations within the ventromedial hypothalamic nucleus (VMN, a metabolically sensitive brain region, has yet to be fully characterized. Glucose-excited (GE and -inhibited (GI neurons are located throughout the VMN and may play a critical role in glucose and energy homeostasis. Within the ventrolateral portion of the VMN (VL-VMN, glucose sensing neurons and estrogen receptor (ER distributions overlap. We therefore tested the hypothesis that VL-VMN glucose sensing neurons were sexually dimorphic and regulated by 17β-estradiol (17βE. Methods: Electrophysiological recordings of VL-VMN glucose sensing neurons in brain slices isolated from age- and weight-matched female and male mice were performed in the presence and absence of 17βE. Results: We found a new class of VL-VMN GI neurons whose response to low glucose was transient despite continued exposure to low glucose. Heretofore, we refer to these newly identified VL-VMN GI neurons as ‘adapting’ or AdGI neurons. We found a sexual dimorphic response to low glucose, with male nonadapting GI neurons, but not AdGI neurons, responding more robustly to low glucose than those from females. 17βE blunted the response of both nonadapting GI and AdGI neurons to low glucose in both males and females, which was mediated by activation of estrogen receptor β and inhibition of AMP-activated kinase. In contrast, 17βE had no impact on GE or non-glucose sensing neurons in either sex. Conclusion: These data suggest sex differences and estrogenic regulation of VMN hypothalamic glucose sensing may contribute to the sexual dimorphism in glucose homeostasis. Author Video: Author Video Watch what authors say about their articles Keywords: 17β-estradiol, AMP-activated kinase, Glucose excited neurons, Glucose inhibited neurons, Ventromedial hypothalamic nucleus, Sexual dimorphism

  17. Subfornical organ neurons integrate cardiovascular and metabolic signals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cancelliere, Nicole M; Ferguson, Alastair V

    2017-02-01

    The subfornical organ (SFO) is a critical circumventricular organ involved in the control of cardiovascular and metabolic homeostasis. Despite the plethora of circulating signals continuously sensed by the SFO, studies investigating how these signals are integrated are lacking. In this study, we use patch-clamp techniques to investigate how the traditionally classified "cardiovascular" hormone ANG II, "metabolic" hormone CCK and "metabolic" signal glucose interact and are integrated in the SFO. Sequential bath application of CCK (10 nM) and ANG (10 nM) onto dissociated SFO neurons revealed that 63% of responsive SFO neurons depolarized to both CCK and ANG; 25% depolarized to ANG only; and 12% hyperpolarized to CCK only. We next investigated the effects of glucose by incubating and recording neurons in either hypoglycemic, normoglycemic, or hyperglycemic conditions and comparing the proportions of responses to ANG ( n = 55) or CCK ( n = 83) application in each condition. A hyperglycemic environment was associated with a larger proportion of depolarizing responses to ANG ( χ 2 , P neurons excited by CCK are also excited by ANG and that glucose environment affects the responsiveness of neurons to both of these hormones, highlighting the ability of SFO neurons to integrate multiple metabolic and cardiovascular signals. These findings have important implications for this structure's role in the control of various autonomic functions during hyperglycemia. Copyright © 2017 the American Physiological Society.

  18. Kv2 Channel Regulation of Action Potential Repolarization and Firing Patterns in Superior Cervical Ganglion Neurons and Hippocampal CA1 Pyramidal Neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Pin W.

    2014-01-01

    Kv2 family “delayed-rectifier” potassium channels are widely expressed in mammalian neurons. Kv2 channels activate relatively slowly and their contribution to action potential repolarization under physiological conditions has been unclear. We explored the function of Kv2 channels using a Kv2-selective blocker, Guangxitoxin-1E (GxTX-1E). Using acutely isolated neurons, mixed voltage-clamp and current-clamp experiments were done at 37°C to study the physiological kinetics of channel gating and action potentials. In both rat superior cervical ganglion (SCG) neurons and mouse hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons, 100 nm GxTX-1E produced near-saturating block of a component of current typically constituting ∼60–80% of the total delayed-rectifier current. GxTX-1E also reduced A-type potassium current (IA), but much more weakly. In SCG neurons, 100 nm GxTX-1E broadened spikes and voltage clamp experiments using action potential waveforms showed that Kv2 channels carry ∼55% of the total outward current during action potential repolarization despite activating relatively late in the spike. In CA1 neurons, 100 nm GxTX-1E broadened spikes evoked from −70 mV, but not −80 mV, likely reflecting a greater role of Kv2 when other potassium channels were partially inactivated at −70 mV. In both CA1 and SCG neurons, inhibition of Kv2 channels produced dramatic depolarization of interspike voltages during repetitive firing. In CA1 neurons and some SCG neurons, this was associated with increased initial firing frequency. In all neurons, inhibition of Kv2 channels depressed maintained firing because neurons entered depolarization block more readily. Therefore, Kv2 channels can either decrease or increase neuronal excitability depending on the time scale of excitation. PMID:24695716

  19. Timing control by redundant inhibitory neuronal circuits

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tristan, I.; Rulkov, N. F.; Huerta, R.; Rabinovich, M.

    2014-01-01

    Rhythms and timing control of sequential activity in the brain is fundamental to cognition and behavior. Although experimental and theoretical studies support the understanding that neuronal circuits are intrinsically capable of generating different time intervals, the dynamical origin of the phenomenon of functionally dependent timing control is still unclear. Here, we consider a new mechanism that is related to the multi-neuronal cooperative dynamics in inhibitory brain motifs consisting of a few clusters. It is shown that redundancy and diversity of neurons within each cluster enhances the sensitivity of the timing control with the level of neuronal excitation of the whole network. The generality of the mechanism is shown to work on two different neuronal models: a conductance-based model and a map-based model

  20. Timing control by redundant inhibitory neuronal circuits

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tristan, I., E-mail: itristan@ucsd.edu; Rulkov, N. F.; Huerta, R.; Rabinovich, M. [BioCircuits Institute, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, California 92093-0402 (United States)

    2014-03-15

    Rhythms and timing control of sequential activity in the brain is fundamental to cognition and behavior. Although experimental and theoretical studies support the understanding that neuronal circuits are intrinsically capable of generating different time intervals, the dynamical origin of the phenomenon of functionally dependent timing control is still unclear. Here, we consider a new mechanism that is related to the multi-neuronal cooperative dynamics in inhibitory brain motifs consisting of a few clusters. It is shown that redundancy and diversity of neurons within each cluster enhances the sensitivity of the timing control with the level of neuronal excitation of the whole network. The generality of the mechanism is shown to work on two different neuronal models: a conductance-based model and a map-based model.

  1. Characterization of cortical neuronal and glial alterations during culture of organotypic whole brain slices from neonatal and mature mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Staal, Jerome A; Alexander, Samuel R; Liu, Yao; Dickson, Tracey D; Vickers, James C

    2011-01-01

    Organotypic brain slice culturing techniques are extensively used in a wide range of experimental procedures and are particularly useful in providing mechanistic insights into neurological disorders or injury. The cellular and morphological alterations associated with hippocampal brain slice cultures has been well established, however, the neuronal response of mouse cortical neurons to culture is not well documented. In the current study, we compared the cell viability, as well as phenotypic and protein expression changes in cortical neurons, in whole brain slice cultures from mouse neonates (P4-6), adolescent animals (P25-28) and mature adults (P50+). Cultures were prepared using the membrane interface method. Propidium iodide labeling of nuclei (due to compromised cell membrane) and AlamarBlue™ (cell respiration) analysis demonstrated that neonatal tissue was significantly less vulnerable to long-term culture in comparison to the more mature brain tissues. Cultures from P6 animals showed a significant increase in the expression of synaptic markers and a decrease in growth-associated proteins over the entire culture period. However, morphological analysis of organotypic brain slices cultured from neonatal tissue demonstrated that there were substantial changes to neuronal and glial organization within the neocortex, with a distinct loss of cytoarchitectural stratification and increased GFAP expression (pglial limitans and, after 14 DIV, displayed substantial cellular protrusions from slice edges, including cells that expressed both glial and neuronal markers. In summary, we present a substantial evaluation of the viability and morphological changes that occur in the neocortex of whole brain tissue cultures, from different ages, over an extended period of culture.

  2. Migraine strikes as neuronal excitability reaches a tipping point

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Scheffer, Marten; van den Berg, Albert; Ferrari, Michel D.

    2013-01-01

    Self-propagating waves of cerebral neuronal firing, known as spreading depolarisations, are believed to be at the roots of migraine attacks. We propose that the start of spreading depolarisations corresponds to a critical transition that occurs when dynamic brain networks approach a tipping point.

  3. Migraine Strikes as Neuronal Excitability Reaches a Tipping Point

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Scheffer, M.; Berg, van den A.; Ferrari, B.

    2013-01-01

    Self-propagating waves of cerebral neuronal firing, known as spreading depolarisations, are believed to be at the roots of migraine attacks. We propose that the start of spreading depolarisations corresponds to a critical transition that occurs when dynamic brain networks approach a tipping point.

  4. Heart failure induces changes in acid-sensing ion channels in sensory neurons innervating skeletal muscle.

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    Gibbons, David D; Kutschke, William J; Weiss, Robert M; Benson, Christopher J

    2015-10-15

    Heart failure is associated with diminished exercise capacity, which is driven, in part, by alterations in exercise-induced autonomic reflexes triggered by skeletal muscle sensory neurons (afferents). These overactive reflexes may also contribute to the chronic state of sympathetic excitation, which is a major contributor to the morbidity and mortality of heart failure. Acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) are highly expressed in muscle afferents where they sense metabolic changes associated with ischaemia and exercise, and contribute to the metabolic component of these reflexes. Therefore, we tested if ASICs within muscle afferents are altered in heart failure. We used whole-cell patch clamp to study the electrophysiological properties of acid-evoked currents in isolated, labelled muscle afferent neurons from control and heart failure (induced by myocardial infarction) mice. We found that the percentage of muscle afferents that displayed ASIC-like currents, the current amplitudes, and the pH dose-response relationships were not altered in mice with heart failure. On the other hand, the biophysical properties of ASIC-like currents were significantly different in a subpopulation of cells (40%) from heart failure mice. This population displayed diminished pH sensitivity, altered desensitization kinetics, and very fast recovery from desensitization. These unique properties define these channels within this subpopulation of muscle afferents as being heteromeric channels composed of ASIC2a and -3 subunits. Heart failure induced a shift in the subunit composition of ASICs within muscle afferents, which significantly altered their pH sensing characteristics. These results might, in part, contribute to the changes in exercise-mediated reflexes that are associated with heart failure. © 2015 The Authors. The Journal of Physiology © 2015 The Physiological Society.

  5. Descending projections from the nucleus accumbens shell excite activity of taste-responsive neurons in the nucleus of the solitary tract in the hamster.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Cheng-Shu; Lu, Da-Peng; Cho, Young K

    2015-06-01

    The nucleus of the solitary tract (NST) and the parabrachial nuclei (PbN) are the first and second relays in the rodent central taste pathway. A series of electrophysiological experiments revealed that spontaneous and taste-evoked activities of brain stem gustatory neurons are altered by descending input from multiple forebrain nuclei in the central taste pathway. The nucleus accumbens shell (NAcSh) is a key neural substrate of reward circuitry, but it has not been verified as a classical gustatory nucleus. A recent in vivo electrophysiological study demonstrated that the NAcSh modulates the spontaneous and gustatory activities of hamster pontine taste neurons. In the present study, we investigated whether activation of the NAcSh modulates gustatory responses of the NST neurons. Extracellular single-unit activity was recorded from medullary neurons in urethane-anesthetized hamsters. After taste response was confirmed by delivery of sucrose, NaCl, citric acid, and quinine hydrochloride to the anterior tongue, the NAcSh was stimulated bilaterally with concentric bipolar stimulating electrodes. Stimulation of the ipsilateral and contralateral NAcSh induced firings from 54 and 37 of 90 medullary taste neurons, respectively. Thirty cells were affected bilaterally. No inhibitory responses or antidromic invasion was observed after NAcSh activation. In the subset of taste cells tested, high-frequency electrical stimulation of the NAcSh during taste delivery enhanced taste-evoked neuronal firing. These results demonstrate that two-thirds of the medullary gustatory neurons are under excitatory descending influence from the NAcSh, which is a strong indication of communication between the gustatory pathway and the mesolimbic reward pathway. Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.

  6. Neuropathic pain in experimental autoimmune neuritis is associated with altered electrophysiological properties of nociceptive DRG neurons.

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    Taha, Omneya; Opitz, Thoralf; Mueller, Marcus; Pitsch, Julika; Becker, Albert; Evert, Bernd Oliver; Beck, Heinz; Jeub, Monika

    2017-11-01

    Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) is an acute, immune-mediated polyradiculoneuropathy characterized by rapidly progressive paresis and sensory disturbances. Moderate to severe and often intractable neuropathic pain is a common symptom of GBS, but its underlying mechanisms are unknown. Pathology of GBS is classically attributed to demyelination of large, myelinated peripheral fibers. However, there is increasing evidence that neuropathic pain in GBS is associated with impaired function of small, unmyelinated, nociceptive fibers. We therefore examined the functional properties of small DRG neurons, the somata of nociceptive fibers, in a rat model of GBS (experimental autoimmune neuritis=EAN). EAN rats developed behavioral signs of neuropathic pain. This was accompanied by a significant shortening of action potentials due to a more rapid repolarization and an increase in repetitive firing in a subgroup of capsaicin-responsive DRG neurons. Na + current measurements revealed a significant increase of the fast TTX-sensitive current and a reduction of the persistent TTX-sensitive current component. These changes of Na + currents may account for the significant decrease in AP duration leading to an overall increase in excitability and are therefore possibly directly linked to pathological pain behavior. Thus, like in other animal models of neuropathic and inflammatory pain, Na + channels seem to be crucially involved in the pathology of GBS and may constitute promising targets for pain modulating pharmaceuticals. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Glucose-responsive neurons in the subfornical organ of the rat--a novel site for direct CNS monitoring of circulating glucose.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Medeiros, N; Dai, L; Ferguson, A V

    2012-01-10

    Glucose-sensitive neurons have been identified in a number of CNS regions including metabolic control centers of the hypothalamus. The location of these regions behind the blood-brain barrier restricts them to sensing central, but not circulating glucose concentrations. In this study, we have used patch-clamp electrophysiology to examine whether neurons in a specialized region lacking the blood-brain barrier, the subfornical organ (SFO), are also glucose sensitive. In dissociated SFO neurons, altering the bath concentration of glucose (1 mM, 5 mM, 10 mM) influenced the excitability of 49% of neurons tested (n=67). Glucose-inhibited (GI) neurons depolarized in response to decreased glucose (n=10; mean, 4.6±1.0 mV) or hyperpolarized in response to increased glucose (n=8; mean,-4.4±0.8 mV). In contrast, glucose-excited (GE) neurons depolarized in response to increased glucose (n=9; mean, 6.4±0.4 mV) or hyperpolarized in response to decreased glucose (n=6; mean,-4.8±0.6 mV). Using voltage-clamp recordings, we also identified GI (outward current to increased glucose) and GE (inward current to increased glucose) SFO neurons. The mean glucose-induced inward current had a reversal potential of -24±12 mV (n=5), while GE responses were maintained during sodium-dependent glucose transporter inhibition, supporting the conclusion that GE properties result from the activation of a nonselective cation conductance (NSCC). The glucose-induced outward current had a mean reversal potential of -78±1.2 mV (n=5), while GI responses were not observed in the presence of glibenclamide, suggesting that these properties result from the modulation of K(ATP) channels. These data demonstrate that SFO neurons are glucose responsive, further emphasizing the potential roles of this circumventricular organ as an important sensor and integrator of circulating signals of energy status. Copyright © 2011 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. CNS development under altered gravity: cerebellar glial and neuronal protein expression in rat neonates exposed to hypergravity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguon, K.; Li, G.-H.; Sajdel-Sulkowska, E. M.

    2004-01-01

    The future of space exploration depends on a solid understanding of the developmental process under microgravity, specifically in relation to the central nervous system (CNS). We have previously employed a hypergravity paradigm to assess the impact of altered gravity on the developing rat cerebellum [Exp. Biol. Med. 226 (2000) 790]. The present study addresses the molecular mechanisms involved in the cerebellar response to hypergravity. Specifically, the study focuses on the expression of selected glial and neuronal cerebellar proteins in rat neonates exposed to hypergravity (1.5 G) from embryonic day (E)11 to postnatal day (P)6 or P9 (the time of maximal cerebellar changes) comparing them against their expression in rat neonates developing under normal gravity. Proteins were analyzed by quantitative Western blots of cerebellar homogenates; RNA analysis was performed in the same samples using quantitative PCR. Densitometric analysis of Western blots suggested a reduction in glial (glial acidic protein, GFAP) and neuronal (neuronal cell adhesion moiecule, NCAM-L1, synaptophysin) proteins, but the changes in individual cerebellar proteins in hypergravity-exposed neonates appeared both age- and gender-specific. RNA analysis suggested a reduction in GFAP and synaptophysin mRNAs on P6. These data suggest that exposure to hypergravity may interfere with the expression of selected cerebellar proteins. These changes in protein expression may be involved in mediating the effect of hypergravity on the developing rat cerebellum.

  9. Characterization of thoracic spinal neurons with noxious convergent inputs from heart and lower airways in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qin, Chao; Foreman, Robert D; Farber, Jay P

    2007-04-13

    Respiratory symptoms experienced in some patients with cardiac diseases may be due to convergence of noxious cardiac and pulmonary inputs onto neurons of the central nervous system. For example, convergence of cardiac and respiratory inputs onto single solitary tract neurons may be in part responsible for integration of regulatory and defensive reflex control. However, it is unknown whether inputs from the lungs and heart converge onto single neurons of the spinal cord. The present aim was to characterize upper thoracic spinal neurons responding to both noxious stimuli of the heart and lungs in rats. Extracellular potentials of single thoracic (T3) spinal neurons were recorded in pentobarbital anesthetized, paralyzed, and ventilated male rats. A catheter was placed in the pericardial sac to administer bradykinin (BK, 10 microg/ml, 0.2 ml, 1 min) as a noxious cardiac stimulus. The lung irritant, ammonia, obtained as vapor over a 30% solution of NH(4)OH was injected into the inspiratory line of the ventilator (0.5-1.0 ml over 20 s). Intrapericardial bradykinin (IB) altered activity of 58/65 (89%) spinal neurons that responded to inhaled ammonia (IA). Among those cardiopulmonary convergent neurons, 81% (47/58) were excited by both IA and IB, and the remainder had complex response patterns. Bilateral cervical vagotomy revealed that vagal afferents modulated but did not eliminate responses of individual spinal neurons to IB and IA. The convergence of pulmonary and cardiac nociceptive signaling in the spinal cord may be relevant to situations where a disease process in one organ influences the behavior of the other.

  10. Role of Mitochondrial Dynamics in Neuronal Development: Mechanism for Wolfram Syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cagalinec, Michal; Liiv, Mailis; Hodurova, Zuzana; Hickey, Miriam Ann; Vaarmann, Annika; Mandel, Merle; Zeb, Akbar; Choubey, Vinay; Kuum, Malle; Safiulina, Dzhamilja; Vasar, Eero; Veksler, Vladimir; Kaasik, Allen

    2016-07-01

    Deficiency of the protein Wolfram syndrome 1 (WFS1) is associated with multiple neurological and psychiatric abnormalities similar to those observed in pathologies showing alterations in mitochondrial dynamics. The aim of this study was to examine the hypothesis that WFS1 deficiency affects neuronal function via mitochondrial abnormalities. We show that down-regulation of WFS1 in neurons leads to dramatic changes in mitochondrial dynamics (inhibited mitochondrial fusion, altered mitochondrial trafficking, and augmented mitophagy), delaying neuronal development. WFS1 deficiency induces endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress, leading to inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptor (IP3R) dysfunction and disturbed cytosolic Ca2+ homeostasis, which, in turn, alters mitochondrial dynamics. Importantly, ER stress, impaired Ca2+ homeostasis, altered mitochondrial dynamics, and delayed neuronal development are causatively related events because interventions at all these levels improved the downstream processes. Our data shed light on the mechanisms of neuronal abnormalities in Wolfram syndrome and point out potential therapeutic targets. This work may have broader implications for understanding the role of mitochondrial dynamics in neuropsychiatric diseases.

  11. Role of Mitochondrial Dynamics in Neuronal Development: Mechanism for Wolfram Syndrome.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michal Cagalinec

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Deficiency of the protein Wolfram syndrome 1 (WFS1 is associated with multiple neurological and psychiatric abnormalities similar to those observed in pathologies showing alterations in mitochondrial dynamics. The aim of this study was to examine the hypothesis that WFS1 deficiency affects neuronal function via mitochondrial abnormalities. We show that down-regulation of WFS1 in neurons leads to dramatic changes in mitochondrial dynamics (inhibited mitochondrial fusion, altered mitochondrial trafficking, and augmented mitophagy, delaying neuronal development. WFS1 deficiency induces endoplasmic reticulum (ER stress, leading to inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptor (IP3R dysfunction and disturbed cytosolic Ca2+ homeostasis, which, in turn, alters mitochondrial dynamics. Importantly, ER stress, impaired Ca2+ homeostasis, altered mitochondrial dynamics, and delayed neuronal development are causatively related events because interventions at all these levels improved the downstream processes. Our data shed light on the mechanisms of neuronal abnormalities in Wolfram syndrome and point out potential therapeutic targets. This work may have broader implications for understanding the role of mitochondrial dynamics in neuropsychiatric diseases.

  12. Motor-neuron pool excitability of the lower leg muscles after acute lateral ankle sprain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klykken, Lindsey W; Pietrosimone, Brian G; Kim, Kyung-Min; Ingersoll, Christopher D; Hertel, Jay

    2011-01-01

    Neuromuscular deficits in leg muscles that are associated with arthrogenic muscle inhibition have been reported in people with chronic ankle instability, yet whether these neuromuscular alterations are present in individuals with acute sprains is unknown. To compare the effect of acute lateral ankle sprain on the motor-neuron pool excitability (MNPE) of injured leg muscles with that of uninjured contralateral leg muscles and the leg muscles of healthy controls. Case-control study. Laboratory. Ten individuals with acute ankle sprains (6 females, 4 males; age= 19.2 ± 3.8 years, height= 169.4 ± 8.5 cm, mass= 66.3 ± 11.6 kg) and 10 healthy individuals(6 females,4 males; age= 20.6 ± 4.0 years, height = 169.9 ± 10.6 cm, mass= 66.3 ± 10.2 kg) participated. The independent variables were group (acute ankle sprain, healthy) and limb (injured, uninjured). Separate dependent t tests were used to determine differences in MNPE between legs. The MNPE of the soleus, fibularis longus, and tibialis anterior was measured by the maximal Hoffmann reflex (H(max)) and maximal muscle response (M(max)) and was then normalized using the H(max):M(max) ratio. The soleus MNPE in the ankle-sprain group was higher in the injured limb (H(max):M(max) = 0.63; 95% confidence interval [Cl],0.46, 0.80) than the uninjured limb (H(max):M(max) = 0.47; 95%Cl, 0.08, 0.93)(t(6) = 3.62,P =.01).In the acute ankle-sprain group, tibialis anterior MNPE tended to be lower in the injured ankle (H(max):M(max) =0.06; 95% Cl, 0.01, 0.10) than in the uninjured ankle (H(max):M(max) =0.22; 95%Cl, 0.09, 0.35),but this finding was not different (t(9) =-2.01, P =.07). No differences were detected between injured (0.22; 95% Cl, 0.14, 0.29) and uninjured (0.25; 95%Cl, 0.12, 0.38) ankles for the fibularis longus in the ankle-sprain group (t(9) =-0.739, P =.48). We found no side-to-side differences in any muscle among the healthy group. Facilitated MNPE was present in the involved soleus muscle of patients with acute

  13. Bursting oscillations, bifurcation and synchronization in neuronal systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wang Haixia [School of Science, Nanjing University of Science and Technology, Nanjing 210094 (China); Wang Qingyun, E-mail: drwangqy@gmail.com [Department of Dynamics and Control, Beihang University, Beijing 100191 (China); Lu Qishao [Department of Dynamics and Control, Beihang University, Beijing 100191 (China)

    2011-08-15

    Highlights: > We investigate bursting oscillations and related bifurcation in the modified Morris-Lecar neuron. > Two types of fast-slow bursters are analyzed in detail. > We show the properties of some crucial bifurcation points. > Synchronization transition and the neural excitability are explored in the coupled bursters. - Abstract: This paper investigates bursting oscillations and related bifurcation in the modified Morris-Lecar neuron. It is shown that for some appropriate parameters, the modified Morris-Lecar neuron can exhibit two types of fast-slow bursters, that is 'circle/fold cycle' bursting and 'subHopf/homoclinic' bursting with class 1 and class 2 neural excitability, which have different neuro-computational properties. By means of the analysis of fast-slow dynamics and phase plane, we explore bifurcation mechanisms associated with the two types of bursters. Furthermore, the properties of some crucial bifurcation points, which can determine the type of the burster, are studied by the stability and bifurcation theory. In addition, we investigate the influence of the coupling strength on synchronization transition and the neural excitability in two electrically coupled bursters with the same bursting type. More interestingly, the multi-time-scale synchronization transition phenomenon is found as the coupling strength varies.

  14. Tonotopic alterations in inhibitory input to the medial nucleus of the trapezoid body in a mouse model of Fragile X syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCullagh, Elizabeth A; Salcedo, Ernesto; Huntsman, Molly M; Klug, Achim

    2017-11-01

    Hyperexcitability and the imbalance of excitation/inhibition are one of the leading causes of abnormal sensory processing in Fragile X syndrome (FXS). The precise timing and distribution of excitation and inhibition is crucial for auditory processing at the level of the auditory brainstem, which is responsible for sound localization ability. Sound localization is one of the sensory abilities disrupted by loss of the Fragile X Mental Retardation 1 (Fmr1) gene. Using triple immunofluorescence staining we tested whether there were alterations in the number and size of presynaptic structures for the three primary neurotransmitters (glutamate, glycine, and GABA) in the auditory brainstem of Fmr1 knockout mice. We found decreases in either glycinergic or GABAergic inhibition to the medial nucleus of the trapezoid body (MNTB) specific to the tonotopic location within the nucleus. MNTB is one of the primary inhibitory nuclei in the auditory brainstem and participates in the sound localization process with fast and well-timed inhibition. Thus, a decrease in inhibitory afferents to MNTB neurons should lead to greater inhibitory output to the projections from this nucleus. In contrast, we did not see any other significant alterations in balance of excitation/inhibition in any of the other auditory brainstem nuclei measured, suggesting that the alterations observed in the MNTB are both nucleus and frequency specific. We furthermore show that glycinergic inhibition may be an important contributor to imbalances in excitation and inhibition in FXS and that the auditory brainstem is a useful circuit for testing these imbalances. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. Characterisation of rebound depolarisation in mice deep dorsal horn neurons in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivera-Arconada, Ivan; Lopez-Garcia, Jose A

    2015-09-01

    Spinal dorsal horn neurons constitute the first relay for pain processing and participate in the processing of other sensory, motor and autonomic information. At the cellular level, intrinsic excitability is a factor contributing to network function. In turn, excitability is set by the array of ionic conductance expressed by neurons. Here, we set out to characterise rebound depolarisation following hyperpolarisation, a feature frequently described in dorsal horn neurons but never addressed in depth. To this end, an in vitro preparation of the spinal cord from mice pups was used combined with whole-cell recordings in current and voltage clamp modes. Results show the expression of H- and/or T-type currents in a significant proportion of dorsal horn neurons. The expression of these currents determines the presence of rebound behaviour at the end of hyperpolarising pulses. T-type calcium currents were associated to high-amplitude rebounds usually involving high-frequency action potential firing. H-currents were associated to low-amplitude rebounds less prone to elicit firing or firing at lower frequencies. For a large proportion of neurons expressing both currents, the H-current constitutes a mechanism to ensure a faster response after hyperpolarisations, adjusting the latency of the rebound firing. We conclude that rebound depolarisation and firing are intrinsic factors to many dorsal horn neurons that may constitute a mechanism to integrate somatosensory information in the spinal cord, allowing for a rapid switch from inhibited-to-excited states.

  16. Targeted disruption of the Mast syndrome gene SPG21 in mice impairs hind limb function and alters axon branching in cultured cortical neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soderblom, Cynthia; Stadler, Julia; Jupille, Henri; Blackstone, Craig; Shupliakov, Oleg

    2017-01-01

    Mast syndrome (SPG21) is a childhood-onset, autosomal recessive, complicated form of hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP) characterized by dementia, thin corpus callosum, white matter abnormalities, and cerebellar and extrapyramidal signs in addition to spastic paraparesis. A nucleotide insertion resulting in premature truncation of the SPG21 gene product maspardin underlies this disorder, likely leading to loss of protein function. In this study, we generated SPG21−/− knockout mice by homologous recombination as a possible animal model for SPG21. Though SPG21−/− mice appeared normal at birth, within several months they developed gradually progressive hind limb dysfunction. Cerebral cortical neurons cultured from SPG21−/− mice exhibited significantly more axonal branching than neurons from wild-type animals, while comprehensive neuropathological analysis of SPG21−/− mice did not reveal definitive abnormalities. Since alterations in axon branching have been seen in neurons derived from animal models of other forms of HSP as well as motor neuron diseases, this may represent a common cellular pathogenic theme. PMID:20661613

  17. Cholinergic Neurons in the Basal Forebrain Promote Wakefulness by Actions on Neighboring Non-Cholinergic Neurons: An Opto-Dialysis Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zant, Janneke C; Kim, Tae; Prokai, Laszlo; Szarka, Szabolcs; McNally, James; McKenna, James T; Shukla, Charu; Yang, Chun; Kalinchuk, Anna V; McCarley, Robert W; Brown, Ritchie E; Basheer, Radhika

    2016-02-10

    Understanding the control of sleep-wake states by the basal forebrain (BF) poses a challenge due to the intermingled presence of cholinergic, GABAergic, and glutamatergic neurons. All three BF neuronal subtypes project to the cortex and are implicated in cortical arousal and sleep-wake control. Thus, nonspecific stimulation or inhibition studies do not reveal the roles of these different neuronal types. Recent studies using optogenetics have shown that "selective" stimulation of BF cholinergic neurons increases transitions between NREM sleep and wakefulness, implicating cholinergic projections to cortex in wake promotion. However, the interpretation of these optogenetic experiments is complicated by interactions that may occur within the BF. For instance, a recent in vitro study from our group found that cholinergic neurons strongly excite neighboring GABAergic neurons, including the subset of cortically projecting neurons, which contain the calcium-binding protein, parvalbumin (PV) (Yang et al., 2014). Thus, the wake-promoting effect of "selective" optogenetic stimulation of BF cholinergic neurons could be mediated by local excitation of GABA/PV or other non-cholinergic BF neurons. In this study, using a newly designed opto-dialysis probe to couple selective optical stimulation with simultaneous in vivo microdialysis, we demonstrated that optical stimulation of cholinergic neurons locally increased acetylcholine levels and increased wakefulness in mice. Surprisingly, the enhanced wakefulness caused by cholinergic stimulation was abolished by simultaneous reverse microdialysis of cholinergic receptor antagonists into BF. Thus, our data suggest that the wake-promoting effect of cholinergic stimulation requires local release of acetylcholine in the basal forebrain and activation of cortically projecting, non-cholinergic neurons, including the GABAergic/PV neurons. Optogenetics is a revolutionary tool to assess the roles of particular groups of neurons in behavioral

  18. Defects formation and spiral waves in a network of neurons in presence of electromagnetic induction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rostami, Zahra; Jafari, Sajad

    2018-04-01

    Complex anatomical and physiological structure of an excitable tissue (e.g., cardiac tissue) in the body can represent different electrical activities through normal or abnormal behavior. Abnormalities of the excitable tissue coming from different biological reasons can lead to formation of some defects. Such defects can cause some successive waves that may end up to some additional reorganizing beating behaviors like spiral waves or target waves. In this study, formation of defects and the resulting emitted waves in an excitable tissue are investigated. We have considered a square array network of neurons with nearest-neighbor connections to describe the excitable tissue. Fundamentally, electrophysiological properties of ion currents in the body are responsible for exhibition of electrical spatiotemporal patterns. More precisely, fluctuation of accumulated ions inside and outside of cell causes variable electrical and magnetic field. Considering undeniable mutual effects of electrical field and magnetic field, we have proposed the new Hindmarsh-Rose (HR) neuronal model for the local dynamics of each individual neuron in the network. In this new neuronal model, the influence of magnetic flow on membrane potential is defined. This improved model holds more bifurcation parameters. Moreover, the dynamical behavior of the tissue is investigated in different states of quiescent, spiking, bursting and even chaotic state. The resulting spatiotemporal patterns are represented and the time series of some sampled neurons are displayed, as well.

  19. Disruption of astrocyte-neuron cholesterol cross talk affects neuronal function in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valenza, M; Marullo, M; Di Paolo, E; Cesana, E; Zuccato, C; Biella, G; Cattaneo, E

    2015-04-01

    In the adult brain, neurons require local cholesterol production, which is supplied by astrocytes through apoE-containing lipoproteins. In Huntington's disease (HD), such cholesterol biosynthesis in the brain is severely reduced. Here we show that this defect, occurring in astrocytes, is detrimental for HD neurons. Astrocytes bearing the huntingtin protein containing increasing CAG repeats secreted less apoE-lipoprotein-bound cholesterol in the medium. Conditioned media from HD astrocytes and lipoprotein-depleted conditioned media from wild-type (wt) astrocytes were equally detrimental in a neurite outgrowth assay and did not support synaptic activity in HD neurons, compared with conditions of cholesterol supplementation or conditioned media from wt astrocytes. Molecular perturbation of cholesterol biosynthesis and efflux in astrocytes caused similarly altered astrocyte-neuron cross talk, whereas enhancement of glial SREBP2 and ABCA1 function reversed the aspects of neuronal dysfunction in HD. These findings indicate that astrocyte-mediated cholesterol homeostasis could be a potential therapeutic target to ameliorate neuronal dysfunction in HD.

  20. Mitochondria-derived superoxide and voltage-gated sodium channels in baroreceptor neurons from chronic heart-failure rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tu, Huiyin; Liu, Jinxu; Zhu, Zhen; Zhang, Libin; Pipinos, Iraklis I; Li, Yu-Long

    2012-01-01

    Our previous study has shown that chronic heart failure (CHF) reduces expression and activation of voltage-gated sodium (Na(v)) channels in baroreceptor neurons, which are involved in the blunted baroreceptor neuron excitability and contribute to the impairment of baroreflex in the CHF state. The present study examined the role of mitochondria-derived superoxide in the reduced Na(v) channel function in coronary artery ligation-induced CHF rats. CHF decreased the protein expression and activity of mitochondrial complex enzymes and manganese SOD (MnSOD) and elevated the mitochondria-derived superoxide level in the nodose neurons compared with those in sham nodose neurons. Adenoviral MnSOD (Ad.MnSOD) gene transfection (50 multiplicity of infection) into the nodose neurons normalized the MnSOD expression and reduced the elevation of mitochondrial superoxide in the nodose neurons from CHF rats. Ad.MnSOD also partially reversed the reduced protein expression and current density of the Na(v) channels and the suppressed cell excitability (the number of action potential and the current threshold for inducing action potential) in aortic baroreceptor neurons from CHF rats. Data from the present study indicate that mitochondrial dysfunction, including decreased protein expression and activity of mitochondrial complex enzymes and MnSOD and elevated mitochondria-derived superoxide, contributes to the reduced Na(v) channel activation and cell excitability in the aortic baroreceptor neurons in CHF rats.

  1. Inducible Knockout of the Cyclin-Dependent Kinase 5 Activator p35 Alters Hippocampal Spatial Coding and Neuronal Excitability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eriko Kamiki

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available p35 is an activating co-factor of Cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5, a protein whose dysfunction has been implicated in a wide-range of neurological disorders including cognitive impairment and disease. Inducible deletion of the p35 gene in adult mice results in profound deficits in hippocampal-dependent spatial learning and synaptic physiology, however the impact of the loss of p35 function on hippocampal in vivo physiology and spatial coding remains unknown. Here, we recorded CA1 pyramidal cell activity in freely behaving p35 cKO and control mice and found that place cells in the mutant mice have elevated firing rates and impaired spatial coding, accompanied by changes in the temporal organization of spiking both during exploration and rest. These data shed light on the role of p35 in maintaining cellular and network excitability and provide a physiological correlate of the spatial learning deficits in these mice.

  2. Inducible Knockout of the Cyclin-Dependent Kinase 5 Activator p35 Alters Hippocampal Spatial Coding and Neuronal Excitability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kamiki, Eriko; Boehringer, Roman; Polygalov, Denis; Ohshima, Toshio; McHugh, Thomas J.

    2018-01-01

    p35 is an activating co-factor of Cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5), a protein whose dysfunction has been implicated in a wide-range of neurological disorders including cognitive impairment and disease. Inducible deletion of the p35 gene in adult mice results in profound deficits in hippocampal-dependent spatial learning and synaptic physiology, however the impact of the loss of p35 function on hippocampal in vivo physiology and spatial coding remains unknown. Here, we recorded CA1 pyramidal cell activity in freely behaving p35 cKO and control mice and found that place cells in the mutant mice have elevated firing rates and impaired spatial coding, accompanied by changes in the temporal organization of spiking both during exploration and rest. These data shed light on the role of p35 in maintaining cellular and network excitability and provide a physiological correlate of the spatial learning deficits in these mice. PMID:29867369

  3. REMOD: a computational tool for remodeling neuronal dendrites

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Panagiotis Bozelos

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available In recent years, several modeling studies have indicated that dendritic morphology is a key determinant of how individual neurons acquire a unique signal processing profile. The highly branched dendritic structure that originates from the cell body, explores the surrounding 3D space in a fractal-like manner, until it reaches a certain amount of complexity. Its shape undergoes significant alterations not only in various neuropathological conditions, but in physiological, too. Yet, despite the profound effect that these alterations can have on neuronal function, the causal relationship between structure and function remains largely elusive. The lack of a systematic approach for remodeling neuronal cells and their dendritic trees is a key limitation that contributes to this problem. In this context, we developed a computational tool that allows the remodeling of any type of neurons, given a set of exemplar morphologies. The tool is written in Python and provides a simple GUI that guides the user through various options to manipulate selected neuronal morphologies. It provides the ability to load one or more morphology files (.swc or .hoc and choose specific dendrites to operate one of the following actions: shrink, remove, extend or branch (as shown in Figure 1. The user retains complete control over the extent of each alteration and if a chosen action is not possible due to pre-existing structural constraints, appropriate warnings are produced. Importantly, the tool can also be used to extract morphology statistics for one or multiple morphologies, including features such as the total dendritic length, path length to the root, branch order, diameter tapering, etc. Finally, an experimental utility enables the user to remodel entire dendritic trees based on preloaded statistics from a database of cell-type specific neuronal morphologies. To our knowledge, this is the first tool that allows (a the remodeling of existing –as opposed to the de novo

  4. Recurrent antecedent hypoglycemia alters neuronal oxidative metabolism in vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Lihong; Herzog, Raimund I; Mason, Graeme F; de Graaf, Robin A; Rothman, Douglas L; Sherwin, Robert S; Behar, Kevin L

    2009-06-01

    The objective of this study was to characterize the changes in brain metabolism caused by antecedent recurrent hypoglycemia under euglycemic and hypoglycemic conditions in a rat model and to test the hypothesis that recurrent hypoglycemia changes the brain's capacity to utilize different energy substrates. Rats exposed to recurrent insulin-induced hypoglycemia for 3 days (3dRH rats) and untreated controls were subject to the following protocols: [2-(13)C]acetate infusion under euglycemic conditions (n = 8), [1-(13)C]glucose and unlabeled acetate coinfusion under euglycemic conditions (n = 8), and [2-(13)C]acetate infusion during a hyperinsulinemic-hypoglycemic clamp (n = 8). In vivo nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy was used to monitor the rise of(13)C-labeling in brain metabolites for the calculation of brain metabolic fluxes using a neuron-astrocyte model. At euglycemia, antecedent recurrent hypoglycemia increased whole-brain glucose metabolism by 43 +/- 4% (P glucose utilization in neurons. Although acetate metabolism remained the same, control and 3dRH animals showed a distinctly different response to acute hypoglycemia: controls decreased pyruvate dehydrogenase (PDH) flux in astrocytes by 64 +/- 20% (P = 0.01), whereas it increased by 37 +/- 3% in neurons (P = 0.01). The 3dRH animals decreased PDH flux in both compartments (-75 +/- 20% in astrocytes, P neurons, P = 0.005). Thus, acute hypoglycemia reduced total brain tricarboxylic acid cycle activity in 3dRH animals (-37 +/- 4%, P = 0.001), but not in controls. Our findings suggest that after antecedent hypoglycemia, glucose utilization is increased at euglycemia and decreased after acute hypoglycemia, which was not the case in controls. These findings may help to identify better methods of preserving brain function and reducing injury during acute hypoglycemia.

  5. What do we really know about 5-HT1A receptor signaling in neuronal cells?

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    JENNY LUCY FIEDLER

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Serotonin (5-HT is a neurotransmitter that plays an important role in neuronal plasticity. Variations in the levels of 5-HT at the synaptic cleft, expression or dysfunction of serotonin receptors may alter brain development and predispose to various mental diseases. Here, we review the transduction pathways described in various cell types transfected with recombinant 5-HT1A receptor (5-HT1AR, specially contrasting with those findings obtained in neuronal cells. The 5-HT1AR is detected in early stages of neural development and is located in the soma, dendrites and spines of hippocampal neurons. The 5-HT1AR differs from other serotonin receptors because it is coupled to different pathways, depending on the targeted cell. The signaling pathway associated with this receptor is determined by Gα isoforms and some cascades involve βγ signaling. The activity of 5-HT1AR usually promotes a reduction in neuronal excitability and firing, provokes a variation in cAMP and Ca2+, levels which may be linked to specific types of behavior and cognition. Furthermore, evidence indicates that 5-HT1AR induces neuritogesis and synapse formation, probably by modulation of the neuronal cytoskeleton through MAPK and PI3K-Akt signaling pathways. Advances in understanding the actions of 5-HT1AR and its association with different signaling pathways in the central nervous system will reveal their pivotal role in health and disease.

  6. Loss of MeCP2 From Forebrain Excitatory Neurons Leads to Cortical Hyperexcitation and Seizures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Wen; Peterson, Matthew; Beyer, Barbara; Frankel, Wayne N.

    2014-01-01

    Mutations of MECP2 cause Rett syndrome (RTT), a neurodevelopmental disorder leading to loss of motor and cognitive functions, impaired social interactions, and seizure at young ages. Defects of neuronal circuit development and function are thought to be responsible for the symptoms of RTT. The majority of RTT patients show recurrent seizures, indicating that neuronal hyperexcitation is a common feature of RTT. However, mechanisms underlying hyperexcitation in RTT are poorly understood. Here we show that deletion of Mecp2 from cortical excitatory neurons but not forebrain inhibitory neurons in the mouse leads to spontaneous seizures. Selective deletion of Mecp2 from excitatory but not inhibitory neurons in the forebrain reduces GABAergic transmission in layer 5 pyramidal neurons in the prefrontal and somatosensory cortices. Loss of MeCP2 from cortical excitatory neurons reduces the number of GABAergic synapses in the cortex, and enhances the excitability of layer 5 pyramidal neurons. Using single-cell deletion of Mecp2 in layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons, we show that GABAergic transmission is reduced in neurons without MeCP2, but is normal in neighboring neurons with MeCP2. Together, these results suggest that MeCP2 in cortical excitatory neurons plays a critical role in the regulation of GABAergic transmission and cortical excitability. PMID:24523563

  7. Multi-timescale Modeling of Activity-Dependent Metabolic Coupling in the Neuron-Glia-Vasculature Ensemble

    KAUST Repository

    Jolivet, Renaud; Coggan, Jay S.; Allaman, Igor; Magistretti, Pierre J.

    2015-01-01

    time integrates the respective timescales at which energy metabolism and neuronal excitability occur. The model is constrained by relative neuronal and astrocytic oxygen and glucose utilization, by the concentration of metabolites at rest

  8. Role of GABA Release From Leptin Receptor-Expressing Neurons in Body Weight Regulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Yuanzhong; O'Brien, William G.; Lee, Cheng-Chi; Myers, Martin G.

    2012-01-01

    It is well established that leptin regulates energy balance largely through isoform B leptin receptor-expressing neurons (LepR neurons) in the brain and that leptin activates one subset of LepR neurons (leptin-excited neurons) while inhibiting the other (leptin-inhibited neurons). However, the neurotransmitters released from LepR neurons that mediate leptin action in the brain are not well understood. Previous results demonstrate that leptin mainly acts on γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)ergic neurons to reduce body weight, and that leptin activates proopiomelanocortin neuron activity by reducing GABA release onto these neurons, suggesting a body weight-promoting role for GABA released from leptin-inhibited neurons. To directly examine the role of GABA release from LepR neurons in body weight regulation, mice with disruption of GABA release specifically from LepR neurons were generated by deletion of vesicular GABA transporter in LepR neurons. Interestingly, these mice developed mild obesity on chow diet and were sensitive to diet-induced obesity, which were associated with higher food intake and lower energy expenditure. Moreover, these mice showed blunted responses in both food intake and body weight to acute leptin administration. These results demonstrate that GABA plays an important role in mediating leptin action. In combination with the previous studies that leptin reduces GABA release onto proopiomelanocortin neurons through leptin-inhibited neurons and that disruption of GABA release from agouti gene-related protein neurons, one subset of LepR-inhibited neurons, leads to a lean phenotype, our results suggest that, under our experimental conditions, GABA release from leptin-excited neuron dominates over leptin-inhibited ones. PMID:22334723

  9. HCN Channels—Modulators of Cardiac and Neuronal Excitability

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    Stefan Herrmann

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN channels comprise a family of cation channels activated by hyperpolarized membrane potentials and stimulated by intracellular cyclic nucleotides. The four members of this family, HCN1–4, show distinct biophysical properties which are most evident in the kinetics of activation and deactivation, the sensitivity towards cyclic nucleotides and the modulation by tyrosine phosphorylation. The four isoforms are differentially expressed in various excitable tissues. This review will mainly focus on recent insights into the functional role of the channels apart from their classic role as pacemakers. The importance of HCN channels in the cardiac ventricle and ventricular hypertrophy will be discussed. In addition, their functional significance in the peripheral nervous system and nociception will be examined. The data, which are mainly derived from studies using transgenic mice, suggest that HCN channels contribute significantly to cellular excitability in these tissues. Remarkably, the impact of the channels is clearly more pronounced in pathophysiological states including ventricular hypertrophy as well as neural inflammation and neuropathy suggesting that HCN channels may constitute promising drug targets in the treatment of these conditions. This perspective as well as the current therapeutic use of HCN blockers will also be addressed.

  10. Ablation of sphingosine 1-phosphate receptor subtype 3 impairs hippocampal neuron excitability in vitro and spatial working memory in vivo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela Weth-Malsch

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Understanding the role of the bioactive lipid mediator sphingosine 1-phosphate (S1P within the central nervous system has recently gained more and more attention, as it has been connected to major diseases such as multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer's disease. Even though much data about the functions of the five S1P receptors has been collected for other organ systems, we still lack a complete understanding for their specific roles, in particular within the brain. Therefore, it was the aim of this study to further elucidate the role of S1P receptor subtype 3 (S1P3 in vivo and in vitro with a special focus on the hippocampus. Using an S1P3 knock-out mouse model we applied a range of behavioral tests, performed expression studies and whole cell patch clamp recordings in acute hippocampal slices. We were able to show that S1P3 deficient mice display a significant spatial working memory deficit within the T-maze test, but not in anxiety related tests. Furthermore, S1p3 mRNA was expressed throughout the hippocampal formation. Principal neurons in area CA3 lacking S1P3 showed significantly increased interspike intervals and a significantly decreased input resistance. Upon stimulation with S1P CA3 principal neurons from both wildtype and S1P3-/- mice displayed significantly increased evoked EPSC amplitudes and decay times, whereas rise times remained unchanged. These results suggest a specific involvement of S1P3 for the establishment of spatial working memory and neuronal excitability within the hippocampus.

  11. Numerical simulation of coherent resonance in a model network of Rulkov neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andreev, Andrey V.; Runnova, Anastasia E.; Pisarchik, Alexander N.

    2018-04-01

    In this paper we study the spiking behaviour of a neuronal network consisting of Rulkov elements. We find that the regularity of this behaviour maximizes at a certain level of environment noise. This effect referred to as coherence resonance is demonstrated in a random complex network of Rulkov neurons. An external stimulus added to some of neurons excites them, and then activates other neurons in the network. The network coherence is also maximized at the certain stimulus amplitude.

  12. Neonicotinoid Insecticides Alter the Gene Expression Profile of Neuron-Enriched Cultures from Neonatal Rat Cerebellum

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    Junko Kimura-Kuroda

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Neonicotinoids are considered safe because of their low affinities to mammalian nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs relative to insect nAChRs. However, because of importance of nAChRs in mammalian brain development, there remains a need to establish the safety of chronic neonicotinoid exposures with regards to children’s health. Here we examined the effects of longterm (14 days and low dose (1 μM exposure of neuron-enriched cultures from neonatal rat cerebellum to nicotine and two neonicotinoids: acetamiprid and imidacloprid. Immunocytochemistry revealed no differences in the number or morphology of immature neurons or glial cells in any group versus untreated control cultures. However, a slight disturbance in Purkinje cell dendritic arborization was observed in the exposed cultures. Next we performed transcriptome analysis on total RNAs using microarrays, and identified significant differential expression (p < 0.05, q < 0.05, ≥1.5 fold between control cultures versus nicotine-, acetamiprid-, or imidacloprid-exposed cultures in 34, 48, and 67 genes, respectively. Common to all exposed groups were nine genes essential for neurodevelopment, suggesting that chronic neonicotinoid exposure alters the transcriptome of the developing mammalian brain in a similar way to nicotine exposure. Our results highlight the need for further careful investigations into the effects of neonicotinoids in the developing mammalian brain.

  13. Arsenic moiety in gallium arsenide is responsible for neuronal apoptosis and behavioral alterations in rats

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Flora, Swaran J.S.; Bhatt, Kapil; Mehta, Ashish

    2009-01-01

    Gallium arsenide (GaAs), an intermetallic semiconductor finds widespread applications in high frequency microwave and millimeter wave, and ultra fast supercomputers. Extensive use of GaAs has led to increased exposure to humans working in semiconductor industry. GaAs has the ability to dissociate into its constitutive moieties at physiological pH and might be responsible for the oxidative stress. The present study was aimed at evaluating, the principle moiety (Ga or As) in GaAs to cause neurological dysfunction based on its ability to cause apoptosis, in vivo and in vitro and if this neuronal dysfunction translated to neurobehavioral changes in chronically exposed rats. Result indicated that arsenic moiety in GaAs was mainly responsible for causing oxidative stress via increased reactive oxygen species (ROS) and nitric oxide (NO) generation, both in vitro and in vivo. Increased ROS further caused apoptosis via mitochondrial driven pathway. Effects of oxidative stress were also confirmed based on alterations in antioxidant enzymes, GPx, GST and SOD in rat brain. We noted that ROS induced oxidative stress caused changes in the brain neurotransmitter levels, Acetylcholinesterase and nitric oxide synthase, leading to loss of memory and learning in rats. The study demonstrates for the first time that the slow release of arsenic moiety from GaAs is mainly responsible for oxidative stress induced apoptosis in neuronal cells causing behavioral changes.

  14. Toxoplasma gondii Actively Inhibits Neuronal Function in Chronically Infected Mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haroon, Fahad; Händel, Ulrike; Angenstein, Frank; Goldschmidt, Jürgen; Kreutzmann, Peter; Lison, Holger; Fischer, Klaus-Dieter; Scheich, Henning; Wetzel, Wolfram; Schlüter, Dirk; Budinger, Eike

    2012-01-01

    Upon infection with the obligate intracellular parasite Toxoplasma gondii, fast replicating tachyzoites infect a broad spectrum of host cells including neurons. Under the pressure of the immune response, tachyzoites convert into slow-replicating bradyzoites, which persist as cysts in neurons. Currently, it is unclear whether T. gondii alters the functional activity of neurons, which may contribute to altered behaviour of T. gondii–infected mice and men. In the present study we demonstrate that upon oral infection with T. gondii cysts, chronically infected BALB/c mice lost over time their natural fear against cat urine which was paralleled by the persistence of the parasite in brain regions affecting behaviour and odor perception. Detailed immunohistochemistry showed that in infected neurons not only parasitic cysts but also the host cell cytoplasm and some axons stained positive for Toxoplasma antigen suggesting that parasitic proteins might directly interfere with neuronal function. In fact, in vitro live cell calcium (Ca2+) imaging studies revealed that tachyzoites actively manipulated Ca2+ signalling upon glutamate stimulation leading either to hyper- or hypo-responsive neurons. Experiments with the endoplasmatic reticulum Ca2+ uptake inhibitor thapsigargin indicate that tachyzoites deplete Ca2+ stores in the endoplasmatic reticulum. Furthermore in vivo studies revealed that the activity-dependent uptake of the potassium analogue thallium was reduced in cyst harbouring neurons indicating their functional impairment. The percentage of non-functional neurons increased over time In conclusion, both bradyzoites and tachyzoites functionally silence infected neurons, which may significantly contribute to the altered behaviour of the host. PMID:22530040

  15. Toxoplasma gondii actively inhibits neuronal function in chronically infected mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fahad Haroon

    Full Text Available Upon infection with the obligate intracellular parasite Toxoplasma gondii, fast replicating tachyzoites infect a broad spectrum of host cells including neurons. Under the pressure of the immune response, tachyzoites convert into slow-replicating bradyzoites, which persist as cysts in neurons. Currently, it is unclear whether T. gondii alters the functional activity of neurons, which may contribute to altered behaviour of T. gondii-infected mice and men. In the present study we demonstrate that upon oral infection with T. gondii cysts, chronically infected BALB/c mice lost over time their natural fear against cat urine which was paralleled by the persistence of the parasite in brain regions affecting behaviour and odor perception. Detailed immunohistochemistry showed that in infected neurons not only parasitic cysts but also the host cell cytoplasm and some axons stained positive for Toxoplasma antigen suggesting that parasitic proteins might directly interfere with neuronal function. In fact, in vitro live cell calcium (Ca(2+ imaging studies revealed that tachyzoites actively manipulated Ca(2+ signalling upon glutamate stimulation leading either to hyper- or hypo-responsive neurons. Experiments with the endoplasmatic reticulum Ca(2+ uptake inhibitor thapsigargin indicate that tachyzoites deplete Ca(2+ stores in the endoplasmatic reticulum. Furthermore in vivo studies revealed that the activity-dependent uptake of the potassium analogue thallium was reduced in cyst harbouring neurons indicating their functional impairment. The percentage of non-functional neurons increased over time In conclusion, both bradyzoites and tachyzoites functionally silence infected neurons, which may significantly contribute to the altered behaviour of the host.

  16. Neuronal-glial trafficking

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bachelard, H.S.

    2001-01-01

    Full text: The name 'glia' originates from the Greek word for glue, because astro glia (or astrocytes) were thought only to provide an anatomical framework for the electrically-excitable neurones. However, awareness that astrocytes perform vital roles in protecting the neurones, which they surround, emerged from evidence that they act as neuroprotective K + -sinks, and that they remove potentially toxic extracellular glutamate from the vicinity of the neurones. The astrocytes convert the glutamate to non-toxic glutamine which is returned to the neurones and used to replenish transmitter glutamate. This 'glutamate-glutamine cycle' (established in the 1960s by Berl and his colleagues) also contributes to protecting the neurones against a build-up of toxic ammonia. Glial cells also supply the neurones with components for free-radical scavenging glutathione. Recent studies have revealed that glial cells play a more positive interactive role in furnishing the neurones with fuels. Studies using radioactive 14 C, 13 C-MRS and 15 N-GCMS have revealed that glia produce alanine, lactate and proline for consumption by neurones, with increased formation of neurotransmitter glutamate. On neuronal activation the release of NH 4 + and glutamate from the neurones stimulates glucose uptake and glycolysis in the glia to produce more alanine, which can be regarded as an 'alanine-glutamate cycle' Use of 14 C-labelled precursors provided early evidence that neurotransmitter GABA may be partly derived from glial glutamine, and this has been confirmed recently in vivo by MRS isotopomer analysis of the GABA and glutamine labelled from 13 C-acetate. Relative rates of intermediary metabolism in glia and neurones can be calculated using a combination of [1- 13 C] glucose and [1,2- 13 C] acetate. When glutamate is released by neurones there is a net neuronal loss of TCA intermediates which have to be replenished. Part of this is derived from carboxylation of pyruvate, (pyruvate carboxylase

  17. Spontaneous neuronal activity as a self-organized critical phenomenon

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Arcangelis, L.; Herrmann, H. J.

    2013-01-01

    Neuronal avalanches are a novel mode of activity in neuronal networks, experimentally found in vitro and in vivo, and exhibit a robust critical behaviour. Avalanche activity can be modelled within the self-organized criticality framework, including threshold firing, refractory period and activity-dependent synaptic plasticity. The size and duration distributions confirm that the system acts in a critical state, whose scaling behaviour is very robust. Next, we discuss the temporal organization of neuronal avalanches. This is given by the alternation between states of high and low activity, named up and down states, leading to a balance between excitation and inhibition controlled by a single parameter. During these periods both the single neuron state and the network excitability level, keeping memory of past activity, are tuned by homeostatic mechanisms. Finally, we verify if a system with no characteristic response can ever learn in a controlled and reproducible way. Learning in the model occurs via plastic adaptation of synaptic strengths by a non-uniform negative feedback mechanism. Learning is a truly collective process and the learning dynamics exhibits universal features. Even complex rules can be learned provided that the plastic adaptation is sufficiently slow.

  18. Network models predict that reduced excitatory fluctuations can give rise to hippocampal network hyper-excitability in MeCP2-null mice.

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    Ernest C Y Ho

    Full Text Available Rett syndrome is a severe pediatric neurological disorder caused by loss of function mutations within the gene encoding methyl CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2. Although MeCP2 is expressed near ubiquitously, the primary pathophysiology of Rett syndrome stems from impairments of nervous system function. One alteration within different regions of the MeCP2-deficient brain is the presence of hyper-excitable network responses. In the hippocampus, such responses exist despite there being an overall decrease in spontaneous excitatory drive within the network. In this study, we generated and used mathematical, neuronal network models to resolve this apparent paradox. We did this by taking advantage of previous mathematical modelling insights that indicated that decreased excitatory fluctuations, but not mean excitatory drive, more critically explain observed changes in hippocampal network oscillations from MeCP2-null mouse slices. Importantly, reduced excitatory fluctuations could also bring about hyper-excitable responses in our network models. Therefore, these results indicate that diminished excitatory fluctuations may be responsible for the hyper-excitable state of MeCP2-deficient hippocampal circuitry.

  19. Quinolinic acid induces disrupts cytoskeletal homeostasis in striatal neurons. Protective role of astrocyte-neuron interaction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pierozan, Paula; Ferreira, Fernanda; de Lima, Bárbara Ortiz; Pessoa-Pureur, Regina

    2015-02-01

    Quinolinic acid (QUIN) is an endogenous metabolite of the kynurenine pathway involved in several neurological disorders. Among the several mechanisms involved in QUIN-mediated toxicity, disruption of the cytoskeleton has been demonstrated in striatally injected rats and in striatal slices. The present work searched for the actions of QUIN in primary striatal neurons. Neurons exposed to 10 µM QUIN presented hyperphosphorylated neurofilament (NF) subunits (NFL, NFM, and NFH). Hyperphosphorylation was abrogated in the presence of protein kinase A and protein kinase C inhibitors H89 (20 μM) and staurosporine (10 nM), respectively, as well as by specific antagonists to N-methyl-D-aspartate (50 µM DL-AP5) and metabotropic glutamate receptor 1 (100 µM MPEP). Also, intra- and extracellular Ca(2+) chelators (10 µM BAPTA-AM and 1 mM EGTA, respectively) and Ca(2+) influx through L-type voltage-dependent Ca(2+) channel (10 µM verapamil) are implicated in QUIN-mediated effects. Cells immunostained for the neuronal markers βIII-tubulin and microtubule-associated protein 2 showed altered neurite/neuron ratios and neurite outgrowth. NF hyperphosphorylation and morphological alterations were totally prevented by conditioned medium from QUIN-treated astrocytes. Cocultured astrocytes and neurons interacted with one another reciprocally, protecting them against QUIN injury. Cocultured cells preserved their cytoskeletal organization and cell morphology together with unaltered activity of the phosphorylating system associated with the cytoskeleton. This article describes cytoskeletal disruption as one of the most relevant actions of QUIN toxicity in striatal neurons in culture with soluble factors secreted by astrocytes, with neuron-astrocyte interaction playing a role in neuroprotection. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  20. Breaking the excitation-inhibition balance makes the cortical network’s space-time dynamics distinguish simple visual scenes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Roland, Per E.; Bonde, Lars H.; Forsberg, Lars E.

    2017-01-01

    Brain dynamics are often taken to be temporal dynamics of spiking and membrane potentials in a balanced network. Almost all evidence for a balanced network comes from recordings of cell bodies of few single neurons, neglecting more than 99% of the cortical network. We examined the space......-time dynamics of excitation and inhibition simultaneously in dendrites and axons over four visual areas of ferrets exposed to visual scenes with stationary and moving objects. The visual stimuli broke the tight balance between excitation and inhibition such that the network exhibited longer episodes of net...... excitation subsequently balanced by net inhibition, in contrast to a balanced network. Locally in all four areas the amount of net inhibition matched the amount of net excitation with a delay of 125 ms. The space-time dynamics of excitation-inhibition evolved to reduce the complexity of neuron interactions...

  1. Hypersensitivity to DNA-damaging agents in primary degenerations of excitable tissue

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Robbins, J.H.

    1983-01-01

    Defects in DNA-repair mechanisms render xeroderma pigmentosum cells hypersensitive to killing by the uv-type of DNA-damaging agent. Some xeroderma pigmentosum patients develop a primary neuronal degeneration, and cell lines from patients with the earliest onset of neurodegeneration are the most sensitive to killing by uv radiation. These findings led to the neuronal DNA integrity theory which holds that when the integrity of neuronal DNA is destroyed by the accumulation of unrepaired DNA damaged spontaneously or by endogenous metabolites, the neurons will undergo a primary degeneration. Cells from patients with Cockayne syndrome, a demyelinating disorder with a primary retinal degeneration, are also hypersensitive to the uv-type of DNA-damaging agent. Cells from patients with the primary neuronal degeneration of ataxia telangiectasia are hypersensitive to the x-ray-type of DNA-damaging agent. Cells from other patients with primary degeneration of excitable tissue also have hypersensitivity to the x-ray-type of DNA-damaging agent. These disorders include (1) primary neuronal degenerations which are either genetic (e.g., Huntington disease, familial dysautonomia, Friedreich ataxia) or sporadic (e.g., Alzheimer disease, Parkinson disease), (2) primary muscle degenerations (e.g., Duchenne muscular dystrophy), and (3) a primary retinal degeneration (Usher syndrome). Death of excitable tissue in vivo in these radiosensitive diseases may result from unrepaired DNA. This hypersensitivity provides the basis for developing suitable presymptomatic and prenatal tests for these diseases, for elucidating their pathogenesis, and for developing future therapies. 119 references, 3 figures, 3 tables

  2. Neuronal Rac1 Is Required for Learning-Evoked Neurogenesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Matthew P.; Freewoman, Julia; Cord, Branden; Babu, Harish; Brakebusch, Cord

    2013-01-01

    Hippocampus-dependent learning and memory relies on synaptic plasticity as well as network adaptations provided by the addition of adult-born neurons. We have previously shown that activity-induced intracellular signaling through the Rho family small GTPase Rac1 is necessary in forebrain projection neurons for normal synaptic plasticity in vivo, and here we show that selective loss of neuronal Rac1 also impairs the learning-evoked increase in neurogenesis in the adult mouse hippocampus. Earlier work has indicated that experience elevates the abundance of adult-born neurons in the hippocampus primarily by enhancing the survival of neurons produced just before the learning event. Loss of Rac1 in mature projection neurons did reduce learning-evoked neurogenesis but, contrary to our expectations, these effects were not mediated by altering the survival of young neurons in the hippocampus. Instead, loss of neuronal Rac1 activation selectively impaired a learning-evoked increase in the proliferation and accumulation of neural precursors generated during the learning event itself. This indicates that experience-induced alterations in neurogenesis can be mechanistically resolved into two effects: (1) the well documented but Rac1-independent signaling cascade that enhances the survival of young postmitotic neurons; and (2) a previously unrecognized Rac1-dependent signaling cascade that stimulates the proliferative production and retention of new neurons generated during learning itself. PMID:23884931

  3. Asymmetry in electrical coupling between neurons alters multistable firing behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pisarchik, A. N.; Jaimes-Reátegui, R.; García-Vellisca, M. A.

    2018-03-01

    The role of asymmetry in electrical synaptic connection between two neuronal oscillators is studied in the Hindmarsh-Rose model. We demonstrate that the asymmetry induces multistability in spiking dynamics of the coupled neuronal oscillators. The coexistence of at least three attractors, one chaotic and two periodic orbits, for certain coupling strengths is demonstrated with time series, phase portraits, bifurcation diagrams, basins of attraction of the coexisting states, Lyapunov exponents, and standard deviations of peak amplitudes and interspike intervals. The experimental results with analog electronic circuits are in good agreement with the results of numerical simulations.

  4. Reduced sensory synaptic excitation impairs motor neuron function via Kv2.1 in spinal muscular atrophy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fletcher, Emily V; Simon, Christian M; Pagiazitis, John G; Chalif, Joshua I; Vukojicic, Aleksandra; Drobac, Estelle; Wang, Xiaojian; Mentis, George Z

    2017-07-01

    Behavioral deficits in neurodegenerative diseases are often attributed to the selective dysfunction of vulnerable neurons via cell-autonomous mechanisms. Although vulnerable neurons are embedded in neuronal circuits, the contributions of their synaptic partners to disease process are largely unknown. Here we show that, in a mouse model of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), a reduction in proprioceptive synaptic drive leads to motor neuron dysfunction and motor behavior impairments. In SMA mice or after the blockade of proprioceptive synaptic transmission, we observed a decrease in the motor neuron firing that could be explained by the reduction in the expression of the potassium channel Kv2.1 at the surface of motor neurons. Chronically increasing neuronal activity pharmacologically in vivo led to a normalization of Kv2.1 expression and an improvement in motor function. Our results demonstrate a key role of excitatory synaptic drive in shaping the function of motor neurons during development and the contribution of its disruption to a neurodegenerative disease.

  5. How adaptation shapes spike rate oscillations in recurrent neuronal networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moritz eAugustin

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Neural mass signals from in-vivo recordings often show oscillations with frequencies ranging from <1 Hz to 100 Hz. Fast rhythmic activity in the beta and gamma range can be generated by network based mechanisms such as recurrent synaptic excitation-inhibition loops. Slower oscillations might instead depend on neuronal adaptation currents whose timescales range from tens of milliseconds to seconds. Here we investigate how the dynamics of such adaptation currents contribute to spike rate oscillations and resonance properties in recurrent networks of excitatory and inhibitory neurons. Based on a network of sparsely coupled spiking model neurons with two types of adaptation current and conductance based synapses with heterogeneous strengths and delays we use a mean-field approach to analyze oscillatory network activity. For constant external input, we find that spike-triggered adaptation currents provide a mechanism to generate slow oscillations over a wide range of adaptation timescales as long as recurrent synaptic excitation is sufficiently strong. Faster rhythms occur when recurrent inhibition is slower than excitation and oscillation frequency increases with the strength of inhibition. Adaptation facilitates such network based oscillations for fast synaptic inhibition and leads to decreased frequencies. For oscillatory external input, adaptation currents amplify a narrow band of frequencies and cause phase advances for low frequencies in addition to phase delays at higher frequencies. Our results therefore identify the different key roles of neuronal adaptation dynamics for rhythmogenesis and selective signal propagation in recurrent networks.

  6. PHYLOGENETIC ANALYSIS OF LEARNING-RELATED NEUROMODULATION IN MOLLUSCAN MECHANOSENSORY NEURONS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wright, William G; Kirschman, David; Rozen, Danny; Maynard, Barbara

    1996-12-01

    In spite of significant advances in our understanding of mechanisms of learning and memory in a variety of organisms, little is known about how such mechanisms evolve. Even mechanisms of simple forms of learning, such as habituation and sensitization, have not been studied phylogenetically. Here we begin an evolutionary analysis of learning-related neuromodulation in species related to the well-studied opisthobranch gastropod, Aplysia californica. In Aplysia, increased spike duration and excitability in mechanosensory neurons contribute to several forms of learning-related changes to defensive withdrawal reflexes. The modulatory transmitter serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, or 5-HT), is thought to play a critical role in producing these firing property changes. In the present study, we tested mechanosensory homologs of the tail-withdrawal reflex in species related to Aplysia for 5-HT-mediated increases in spike duration and excitability. Criteria used to identify homologous tail-sensory neurons included position, relative size, resting electrical properties, expression of a sensory neuron-specific protein, neuroanatomy, and receptive field. The four ingroup species studied (Aplysia californica, Dolabella auricularia, Bursatella leachii, and Dolabrifera dolabrifera) belong to two clades (two species each) within the family Aplysiidae. In the first clade (Aplysia/Dolabella), we found that the tail-sensory neurons of A. californica and tail-sensory homologs of a closely related species, D. auricularia, responded to bath-applied serotonin in essentially similar fashion: significant increases in spike duration as well as excitability. In the other clade (Dolabrifera/Bursatella), more distantly related to Aplysia, one species (B. leachii) showed spike broadening and increased excitability. However, the other species (D. dolabrifera) showed neither spike broadening nor increased excitability. The firing properties of tail-sensory homologs of D. dolabrifera were insensitive

  7. NeuronMetrics: software for semi-automated processing of cultured neuron images.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narro, Martha L; Yang, Fan; Kraft, Robert; Wenk, Carola; Efrat, Alon; Restifo, Linda L

    2007-03-23

    Using primary cell culture to screen for changes in neuronal morphology requires specialized analysis software. We developed NeuronMetrics for semi-automated, quantitative analysis of two-dimensional (2D) images of fluorescently labeled cultured neurons. It skeletonizes the neuron image using two complementary image-processing techniques, capturing fine terminal neurites with high fidelity. An algorithm was devised to span wide gaps in the skeleton. NeuronMetrics uses a novel strategy based on geometric features called faces to extract a branch number estimate from complex arbors with numerous neurite-to-neurite contacts, without creating a precise, contact-free representation of the neurite arbor. It estimates total neurite length, branch number, primary neurite number, territory (the area of the convex polygon bounding the skeleton and cell body), and Polarity Index (a measure of neuronal polarity). These parameters provide fundamental information about the size and shape of neurite arbors, which are critical factors for neuronal function. NeuronMetrics streamlines optional manual tasks such as removing noise, isolating the largest primary neurite, and correcting length for self-fasciculating neurites. Numeric data are output in a single text file, readily imported into other applications for further analysis. Written as modules for ImageJ, NeuronMetrics provides practical analysis tools that are easy to use and support batch processing. Depending on the need for manual intervention, processing time for a batch of approximately 60 2D images is 1.0-2.5 h, from a folder of images to a table of numeric data. NeuronMetrics' output accelerates the quantitative detection of mutations and chemical compounds that alter neurite morphology in vitro, and will contribute to the use of cultured neurons for drug discovery.

  8. Homeostatic scaling of excitability in recurrent neural networks.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Remme, M.W.H.; Wadman, W.J.

    2012-01-01

    Neurons adjust their intrinsic excitability when experiencing a persistent change in synaptic drive. This process can prevent neural activity from moving into either a quiescent state or a saturated state in the face of ongoing plasticity, and is thought to promote stability of the network in which

  9. Cortical inhibition, pH and cell excitability in epilepsy: what are optimal targets for antiepileptic interventions?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavlov, Ivan; Kaila, Kai; Kullmann, Dimitri M; Miles, Richard

    2013-01-01

    Epilepsy is characterised by the propensity of the brain to generate spontaneous recurrent bursts of excessive neuronal activity, seizures. GABA-mediated inhibition is critical for restraining neuronal excitation in the brain, and therefore potentiation of GABAergic neurotransmission is commonly used to prevent seizures. However, data obtained in animal models of epilepsy and from human epileptic tissue suggest that GABA-mediated signalling contributes to interictal and ictal activity. Prolonged activation of GABAA receptors during epileptiform bursts may even initiate a shift in GABAergic neurotransmission from inhibitory to excitatory and so have a proconvulsant action. Direct targeting of the membrane mechanisms that reduce spiking in glutamatergic neurons may better control neuronal excitability in epileptic tissue. Manipulation of brain pH may be a promising approach and recent advances in gene therapy and optogenetics seem likely to provide further routes to effective therapeutic intervention. PMID:22890709

  10. Population activity structure of excitatory and inhibitory neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bittner, Sean R; Williamson, Ryan C; Snyder, Adam C; Litwin-Kumar, Ashok; Doiron, Brent; Chase, Steven M; Smith, Matthew A; Yu, Byron M

    2017-01-01

    Many studies use population analysis approaches, such as dimensionality reduction, to characterize the activity of large groups of neurons. To date, these methods have treated each neuron equally, without taking into account whether neurons are excitatory or inhibitory. We studied population activity structure as a function of neuron type by applying factor analysis to spontaneous activity from spiking networks with balanced excitation and inhibition. Throughout the study, we characterized population activity structure by measuring its dimensionality and the percentage of overall activity variance that is shared among neurons. First, by sampling only excitatory or only inhibitory neurons, we found that the activity structures of these two populations in balanced networks are measurably different. We also found that the population activity structure is dependent on the ratio of excitatory to inhibitory neurons sampled. Finally we classified neurons from extracellular recordings in the primary visual cortex of anesthetized macaques as putative excitatory or inhibitory using waveform classification, and found similarities with the neuron type-specific population activity structure of a balanced network with excitatory clustering. These results imply that knowledge of neuron type is important, and allows for stronger statistical tests, when interpreting population activity structure.

  11. Population activity structure of excitatory and inhibitory neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sean R Bittner

    Full Text Available Many studies use population analysis approaches, such as dimensionality reduction, to characterize the activity of large groups of neurons. To date, these methods have treated each neuron equally, without taking into account whether neurons are excitatory or inhibitory. We studied population activity structure as a function of neuron type by applying factor analysis to spontaneous activity from spiking networks with balanced excitation and inhibition. Throughout the study, we characterized population activity structure by measuring its dimensionality and the percentage of overall activity variance that is shared among neurons. First, by sampling only excitatory or only inhibitory neurons, we found that the activity structures of these two populations in balanced networks are measurably different. We also found that the population activity structure is dependent on the ratio of excitatory to inhibitory neurons sampled. Finally we classified neurons from extracellular recordings in the primary visual cortex of anesthetized macaques as putative excitatory or inhibitory using waveform classification, and found similarities with the neuron type-specific population activity structure of a balanced network with excitatory clustering. These results imply that knowledge of neuron type is important, and allows for stronger statistical tests, when interpreting population activity structure.

  12. Population activity structure of excitatory and inhibitory neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doiron, Brent

    2017-01-01

    Many studies use population analysis approaches, such as dimensionality reduction, to characterize the activity of large groups of neurons. To date, these methods have treated each neuron equally, without taking into account whether neurons are excitatory or inhibitory. We studied population activity structure as a function of neuron type by applying factor analysis to spontaneous activity from spiking networks with balanced excitation and inhibition. Throughout the study, we characterized population activity structure by measuring its dimensionality and the percentage of overall activity variance that is shared among neurons. First, by sampling only excitatory or only inhibitory neurons, we found that the activity structures of these two populations in balanced networks are measurably different. We also found that the population activity structure is dependent on the ratio of excitatory to inhibitory neurons sampled. Finally we classified neurons from extracellular recordings in the primary visual cortex of anesthetized macaques as putative excitatory or inhibitory using waveform classification, and found similarities with the neuron type-specific population activity structure of a balanced network with excitatory clustering. These results imply that knowledge of neuron type is important, and allows for stronger statistical tests, when interpreting population activity structure. PMID:28817581

  13. Vasculo-Neuronal Coupling: Retrograde Vascular Communication to Brain Neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Ki Jung; Ramiro Diaz, Juan; Iddings, Jennifer A; Filosa, Jessica A

    2016-12-14

    Continuous cerebral blood flow is essential for neuronal survival, but whether vascular tone influences resting neuronal function is not known. Using a multidisciplinary approach in both rat and mice brain slices, we determined whether flow/pressure-evoked increases or decreases in parenchymal arteriole vascular tone, which result in arteriole constriction and dilation, respectively, altered resting cortical pyramidal neuron activity. We present evidence for intercellular communication in the brain involving a flow of information from vessel to astrocyte to neuron, a direction opposite to that of classic neurovascular coupling and referred to here as vasculo-neuronal coupling (VNC). Flow/pressure increases within parenchymal arterioles increased vascular tone and simultaneously decreased resting pyramidal neuron firing activity. On the other hand, flow/pressure decreases evoke parenchymal arteriole dilation and increased resting pyramidal neuron firing activity. In GLAST-CreERT2; R26-lsl-GCaMP3 mice, we demonstrate that increased parenchymal arteriole tone significantly increased intracellular calcium in perivascular astrocyte processes, the onset of astrocyte calcium changes preceded the inhibition of cortical pyramidal neuronal firing activity. During increases in parenchymal arteriole tone, the pyramidal neuron response was unaffected by blockers of nitric oxide, GABA A , glutamate, or ecto-ATPase. However, VNC was abrogated by TRPV4 channel, GABA B , as well as an adenosine A 1 receptor blocker. Differently to pyramidal neuron responses, increases in flow/pressure within parenchymal arterioles increased the firing activity of a subtype of interneuron. Together, these data suggest that VNC is a complex constitutive active process that enables neurons to efficiently adjust their resting activity according to brain perfusion levels, thus safeguarding cellular homeostasis by preventing mismatches between energy supply and demand. We present evidence for vessel-to-neuron

  14. Neuron responses to substance P and enkephalin in rat dorso-lateral septum in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nayar, R; Sirett, N E; Hubbard, J I

    1987-10-01

    Using an in vitro brain slice technique the responses of spontaneously active neurons in the rat dorso-lateral septum to 10 nM substance P (SP) and enkephalin were determined. Fewer neurons responded to SP (41%) than to enkephalin (55%). The SP responses were 13 excitations, 14 inhibitions, the enkephalin responses were 13 excitations, 14 inhibitions and 11 responded to both, 6 of these were inhibited by both. Immunocytochemical techniques have shown there is a discrete localisation of SP and enkephalin axons and terminals in the rat septum. SP responsive neurons were associated with the SP terminal-rich region (p = 0.01) but no association was found for enkephalin responses in the enkephalin terminal-rich region (p = 0.7).

  15. Activation of pyramidal neurons in mouse medial prefrontal cortex enhances food seeking behavior while reducing impulsivity in the absence of an effect on food intake

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel McAllister Warthen

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC is involved in a wide range of executive cognitive functions, including reward evaluation, decision-making, memory extinction, mood, and task switching. Manipulation of the mPFC has been shown to alter food intake and food reward valuation, but whether exclusive stimulation of mPFC pyramidal neurons, which form the principle output of the mPFC, is sufficient to mediate food rewarded instrumental behavior is unknown. We sought to determine the behavioral consequences of manipulating mPFC output by exciting pyramidal neurons in mouse mPFC during performance of a panel of behavioral assays, focusing on food reward. We found that increasing mPFC pyramidal cell output using Designer Receptors Exclusively Activated by Designer Drugs (DREADD enhanced performance in instrumental food reward assays that assess food seeking behavior, while sparing effects in affect and food intake. Specifically, activation of mPFC pyramidal neurons enhanced operant responding for food reward, reinstatement of palatable food seeking, and suppression of impulsive responding for food reward. Conversely, activation of mPFC pyramidal neurons had no effect on unconditioned food intake, social interaction, or behavior in an open field. Furthermore, we found that behavioral outcome is influenced by the degree of mPFC activation, with a low drive sufficient to enhance operant responding and a higher drive required to alter impulsivity. Additionally, we provide data demonstrating that DREADD stimulation involves a nitric oxide synthase dependent pathway, similar to endogenous muscarinic M3 receptor stimulation, a finding that provides novel mechanistic insight into an increasingly widespread method of remote neuronal control.

  16. The dynamic regulation of cortical excitability is altered in episodic ataxia type 2

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Helmich, Rick C; Siebner, Hartwig R; Giffin, Nicola

    2010-01-01

    -pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation at an interstimulus interval of 2 and 10 ms to assess intracortical inhibition and facilitation, respectively. The time course of burst-induced excitability changes differed between groups. Healthy controls showed a short-lived increase in excitability that was only present 50...... different from either controls or patients with episodic ataxia type 2. Together, these findings indicate that patients with episodic ataxia type 2 have an excessive increase in motor cortex excitability following a strong facilitatory input. We argue that this deficient control of cortical excitability may...

  17. Therapeutic effects of anti-gravity treadmill (AlterG) training on reflex hyper-excitability, corticospinal tract activities, and muscle stiffness in children with cerebral palsy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parvin, Sh; Taghiloo, A; Irani, A; Mirbagheri, M Mehdi

    2017-07-01

    We aimed to study therapeutic effects of antigravity treadmill (AlterG) training on reflex hyper-excitability, muscle stiffness, and corticospinal tract (CST) function in children with spastic hemiplegic cerebral palsy (CP). Three children received AlterG training 3 days per week for 8 weeks as experimental group. Each session lasted 45 minutes. One child as control group received typical occupational therapy for the same amount of time. We evaluated hyper-excitability of lower limb muscles by H-reflex response. We quantified muscle stiffness by sonoelastography images of the affected muscles. We quantified CST activity by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). We performed the evaluations before and after training for both groups. H response latency and maximum M-wave amplitude were improved in experimental group after training compared to control group. Two children of experimental group had TMS response. Major parameters of TMS (i.e. peak-to-peak amplitude of motor evoked potential (MEP), latency of MEP, cortical silent period, and intensity of pulse) improved for both of them. Three parameters of texture analysis of sonoelastography images were improved for experimental group (i.e. contrast, entropy, and shear wave velocity). These findings indicate that AlterG training can improve reflexes, muscle stiffness, and CST activity in children with spastic hemiplegic CP and can be considered as a therapeutic tool to improve neuromuscular abnormalities occurring secondary to CP.

  18. Electrophysiological properties of neurons derived from human stem cells and iNeurons in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halliwell, Robert F

    2017-06-01

    Functional studies of neurons have traditionally used nervous system tissues from a variety of non-human vertebrate and invertebrate species, even when the focus of much of this research has been directed at understanding human brain function. Over the last decade, the identification and isolation of human stem cells from embryonic, tissue (or adult) and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) has revolutionized the availability of human neurons for experimental studies in vitro. In addition, the direct conversion of terminally differentiated fibroblasts into Induced neurons (iN) has generated great excitement because of the likely value of such human stem cell derived neurons (hSCNs) and iN cells in drug discovery, neuropharmacology, neurotoxicology and regenerative medicine. This review addresses the current state of our knowledge of functional receptors and ion channels expressed in neurons derived from human stem cells and iNeurons and identifies gaps and questions that might be investigated in future studies; it focusses almost exclusively on what is known about the electrophysiological properties of neurons derived from human stem cells and iN cells in vitro with an emphasis on voltage and ligand gated ion channels, since these mediate synaptic signalling in the nervous system and they are at the heart of neuropharmacology. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. α-lipoic acid suppresses neuronal excitability and attenuates colonic hypersensitivity to colorectal distention in diabetic rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sun Y

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Yan Sun,1,* Pan-Pan Yang,1,* Zhen-Yuan Song,2 Yu Feng,1 Duan-Min Hu,1 Ji Hu,1 Guang-Yin Xu,3 Hong-Hong Zhang1,3 1Department of Endocrinology, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Soochow University, Suzhou, People’s Republic of China; 2Department of Endocrinology, The East District of Suzhou Municipal Hospital, Suzhou, People’s Republic of China; 3Jiangsu Key Laboratory of Translational Research and Therapy for Neuro-Psycho-Diseases, Institute of Neuroscience, Soochow University, Suzhou, People’s Republic of China *These authors contributed equally to this work Aim: Patients with long-standing diabetes often demonstrate intestinal dysfunction, characterized as constipation or colonic hypersensitivity. Our previous studies have demonstrated the roles of voltage-gated sodium channels NaV1.7 and NaV1.8 in dorsal root ganglion (DRG in colonic hypersensitivity of rats with diabetes. This study was designed to determine roles of antioxidant α-lipoic acid (ALA on sodium channel activities and colonic hypersensitivity of rats with diabetes. Methods: Streptozotocin was used to induce diabetes in adult female rats. Colonic sensitivity was measured by behavioral responses to colorectal distention in rats. The excitability and sodium channel currents of colon projection DRG neurons labeled with DiI were measured by whole-cell patch-clamp recordings. The expressions of NaV1.7 and NaV1.8 of colon DRGs were measured by western blot analysis. Results: ALA treatment significantly increased distention threshold in responding to colorectal distension in diabetic rats compared with normal saline treatment. ALA treatment also hyperpolarized the resting membrane potentials, depolarized action potential threshold, increased rheobase, and decreased frequency of action potentials evoked by ramp current stimulation. Furthermore, ALA treatment also reduced neuronal sodium current densities of DRG neurons innervating the colon from rats with diabetes. In addition, ALA

  20. Prefrontal cortex-projecting glutamatergic thalamic paraventricular nucleus-excited by hypocretin: a feedforward circuit that may enhance cognitive arousal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Hao; Ghosh, Prabhat; van den Pol, Anthony N

    2006-03-01

    The paraventricular thalamic nucleus (PVT) receives one of the most dense innervations by hypothalamic hypocretin/orexin (Hcrt) neurons, which play important roles in sleep-wakefulness, attention, and autonomic function. The PVT projects to several loci, including the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC), a cortical region involved in associative function and attention. To study the effect of Hcrt on excitatory PVT neurons that project to the mPFC, we used a new line of transgenic mice expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP) under the control of the vesicular glutamate-transporter-2 promoter. These neurons were retrogradely labeled with cholera toxin subunit B that had been microinjected into the mPFC. Membrane characteristics and responses to hypocretin-1 and -2 (Hcrt-1 and -2) were studied using whole cell recording (n > 300). PVT neurons showed distinct membrane properties including inward rectification, H-type potassium currents, low threshold spikes, and spike frequency adaptation. Cortically projecting neurons were depolarized and excited by Hcrt-2. Hcrt-2 actions were stronger than those of Hcrt-1, and the action persisted in TTX and in low calcium/high magnesium artificial cerebrospinal fluid, consistent with direct actions mediated by Hcrt receptor-2. Two mechanisms of Hcrt excitation were found: an increase in input resistance caused by closure of potassium channels and activation of nonselective cation channels. The robust excitation evoked by Hcrt-2 on cortically projecting glutamate PVT neurons could generate substantial excitation in multiple layers of the mPFC, adding to the more selective direct excitatory actions of Hcrt in the mPFC and potentially increasing cortical arousal and attention to limbic or visceral states.

  1. Arctigenin protects against neuronal hearing loss by promoting neural stem cell survival and differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Xinghua; Chen, Mo; Ding, Yan; Wang, Qin

    2017-03-01

    Neuronal hearing loss has become a prevalent health problem. This study focused on the function of arctigenin (ARC) in promoting survival and neuronal differentiation of mouse cochlear neural stem cells (NSCs), and its protection against gentamicin (GMC) induced neuronal hearing loss. Mouse cochlea was used to isolate NSCs, which were subsequently cultured in vitro. The effects of ARC on NSC survival, neurosphere formation, differentiation of NSCs, neurite outgrowth, and neural excitability in neuronal network in vitro were examined. Mechanotransduction ability demonstrated by intact cochlea, auditory brainstem response (ABR), and distortion product optoacoustic emissions (DPOAE) amplitude in mice were measured to evaluate effects of ARC on GMC-induced neuronal hearing loss. ARC increased survival, neurosphere formation, neuron differentiation of NSCs in mouse cochlear in vitro. ARC also promoted the outgrowth of neurites, as well as neural excitability of the NSC-differentiated neuron culture. Additionally, ARC rescued mechanotransduction capacity, restored the threshold shifts of ABR and DPOAE in our GMC ototoxicity murine model. This study supports the potential therapeutic role of ARC in promoting both NSCs proliferation and differentiation in vitro to functional neurons, thus supporting its protective function in the therapeutic treatment of neuropathic hearing loss in vivo. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  2. Autapse-induced synchronization in a coupled neuronal network

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ma, Jun; Song, Xinlin; Jin, Wuyin; Wang, Chuni

    2015-01-01

    Highlights: • The functional effect of autapse on neuronal activity is detected. • Autapse driving plays active role in regulating electrical activities as pacemaker. • It confirms biological experimental results for rhythm synchronization between heterogeneous cells. - Abstract: The effect of autapse on coupled neuronal network is detected. In our studies, three identical neurons are connected with ring type and autapse connected to one neuron of the network. The autapse connected to neuron can impose time-delayed feedback in close loop on the neuron thus the dynamics of membrane potentials can be changed. Firstly, the effect of autapse driving on single neuron is confirmed that negative feedback can calm down the neuronal activity while positive feedback can excite the neuronal activity. Secondly, the collective electrical behaviors of neurons are regulated by a pacemaker, which associated with the autapse forcing. By using appropriate gain and time delay in the autapse, the neurons can reach synchronization and the membrane potentials of all neurons can oscillate with the same rhythm under mutual coupling. It indicates that autapse forcing plays an important role in changing the collective electric activities of neuronal network, and appropriate electric modes can be selected due to the switch of feedback type(positive or negative) in autapse. And the autapse-induced synchronization in network is also consistent with some biological experiments about synchronization between nonidentical neurons.

  3. Electrophysiologic alterations in the excitability of the sciatic and vagus nerves during early stages of sepsis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diniz, Lúcio Ricardo Leite; Portella, Viviane Gomes; da Silva Alves, Kerly Shamira; Araújo, Pâmella Cristina da Costa; de Albuquerque Júnior, Ricardo Luiz Cavalcanti; Cavalcante de Albuquerque, Aline Alice; Coelho-de-Souza, Andrelina Noronha; Leal-Cardoso, José Henrique

    2018-01-01

    Nonspecific and delayed diagnosis of neurologic damage contributes to the development of neuropathies in patients with severe sepsis. The present study assessed the electrophysiologic parameters related to the excitability and conductibility of sciatic and vagus nerves during early stages of sepsis. Twenty-four hours after sepsis induced by cecal ligation and puncture (CLP) model, sciatic and vagus nerves of septic (CLP group) and control (sham group) rats were removed, and selected electric stimulations were applied to measure the parameters of the first and second components of the compound action potential. The first component originated from fibers with motor and sensory functions (Types A α and A β fibers) with a large conduction velocity (70-120 m/s), and the second component originated from fibers (Type A γ ) with sensorial function. To evaluate the presence of sensorial alterations, the sensitivity to non-noxious mechanical stimuli was measured by using the von Frey test. Hematoxylin and eosin staining of the nerves was performed. We observed an increase of rheobase followed by a decrease in the first component amplitude and a higher paw withdrawal threshold in response to the application of von Frey filaments in sciatic nerves from the CLP group compared to the sham group. Differently, a decrease in rheobase and an increase in the first component amplitude of vagal C fibers from CLP group were registered. No significant morphologic alteration was observed. Our data showed that the electrophysiologic alterations in peripheral nerves vary with the fiber type and might be identified in the first 24 h of sepsis, before clinical signs of neuromuscular disorders.

  4. Increased response to glutamate in small diameter dorsal root ganglion neurons after sciatic nerve injury.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kerui Gong

    Full Text Available Glutamate in the peripheral nervous system is involved in neuropathic pain, yet we know little how nerve injury alters responses to this neurotransmitter in primary sensory neurons. We recorded neuronal responses from the ex-vivo preparations of the dorsal root ganglia (DRG one week following a chronic constriction injury (CCI of the sciatic nerve in adult rats. We found that small diameter DRG neurons (30 µm were unaffected. Puff application of either glutamate, or the selective ionotropic glutamate receptor agonists alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA and kainic acid (KA, or the group I metabotropic receptor (mGluR agonist (S-3,5-dihydroxyphenylglycine (DHPG, induced larger inward currents in CCI DRGs compared to those from uninjured rats. N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA-induced currents were unchanged. In addition to larger inward currents following CCI, a greater number of neurons responded to glutamate, AMPA, NMDA, and DHPG, but not to KA. Western blot analysis of the DRGs revealed that CCI resulted in a 35% increase in GluA1 and a 60% decrease in GluA2, the AMPA receptor subunits, compared to uninjured controls. mGluR1 receptor expression increased by 60% in the membrane fraction, whereas mGluR5 receptor subunit expression remained unchanged after CCI. These results show that following nerve injury, small diameter DRG neurons, many of which are nociceptive, have increased excitability and an increased response to glutamate that is associated with changes in receptor expression at the neuronal membrane. Our findings provide further evidence that glutamatergic transmission in the periphery plays a role in nociception.

  5. Convergent processing of both positive and negative motivational signals by the VTA dopamine neuronal populations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dong V Wang

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Dopamine neurons in the ventral tegmental area (VTA have been traditionally studied for their roles in reward-related motivation or drug addiction. Here we study how the VTA dopamine neuron population may process fearful and negative experiences as well as reward information in freely behaving mice. Using multi-tetrode recording, we find that up to 89% of the putative dopamine neurons in the VTA exhibit significant activation in response to the conditioned tone that predict food reward, while the same dopamine neuron population also respond to the fearful experiences such as free fall and shake events. The majority of these VTA putative dopamine neurons exhibit suppression and offset-rebound excitation, whereas ∼25% of the recorded putative dopamine neurons show excitation by the fearful events. Importantly, VTA putative dopamine neurons exhibit parametric encoding properties: their firing change durations are proportional to the fearful event durations. In addition, we demonstrate that the contextual information is crucial for these neurons to respectively elicit positive or negative motivational responses by the same conditioned tone. Taken together, our findings suggest that VTA dopamine neurons may employ the convergent encoding strategy for processing both positive and negative experiences, intimately integrating with cues and environmental context.

  6. Developmental alterations in motor coordination and medium spiny neuron markers in mice lacking pgc-1α.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth K Lucas

    Full Text Available Accumulating evidence implicates the transcriptional coactivator peroxisome proliferator activated receptor γ coactivator 1α (PGC-1α in the pathophysiology of Huntington Disease (HD. Adult PGC-1α (-/- mice exhibit striatal neurodegeneration, and reductions in the expression of PGC-1α have been observed in striatum and muscle of HD patients as well as in animal models of the disease. However, it is unknown whether decreased expression of PGC-1α alone is sufficient to lead to the motor phenotype and striatal pathology characteristic of HD. For the first time, we show that young PGC-1α (-/- mice exhibit severe rotarod deficits, decreased rearing behavior, and increased occurrence of tremor in addition to the previously described hindlimb clasping. Motor impairment and striatal vacuolation are apparent in PGC-1α (-/- mice by four weeks of age and do not improve or decline by twelve weeks of age. The behavioral and pathological phenotype of PGC-1α (-/- mice can be completely recapitulated by conditional nervous system deletion of PGC-1α, indicating that peripheral effects are not responsible for the observed abnormalities. Evaluation of the transcriptional profile of PGC-1α (-/- striatal neuron populations and comparison to striatal neuron profiles of R6/2 HD mice revealed that PGC-1α deficiency alone is not sufficient to cause the transcriptional changes observed in this HD mouse model. In contrast to R6/2 HD mice, PGC-1α (-/- mice show increases in the expression of medium spiny neuron (MSN markers with age, suggesting that the observed behavioral and structural abnormalities are not primarily due to MSN loss, the defining pathological feature of HD. These results indicate that PGC-1α is required for the proper development of motor circuitry and transcriptional homeostasis in MSNs and that developmental disruption of PGC-1α leads to long-term alterations in motor functioning.

  7. Loss of thymidine kinase 2 alters neuronal bioenergetics and leads to neurodegeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartesaghi, Stefano; Betts-Henderson, Joanne; Cain, Kelvin; Dinsdale, David; Zhou, Xiaoshan; Karlsson, Anna; Salomoni, Paolo; Nicotera, Pierluigi

    2010-05-01

    Mutations of thymidine kinase 2 (TK2), an essential component of the mitochondrial nucleotide salvage pathway, can give rise to mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) depletion syndromes (MDS). These clinically heterogeneous disorders are characterized by severe reduction in mtDNA copy number in affected tissues and are associated with progressive myopathy, hepatopathy and/or encephalopathy, depending in part on the underlying nuclear genetic defect. Mutations of TK2 have previously been associated with an isolated myopathic form of MDS (OMIM 609560). However, more recently, neurological phenotypes have been demonstrated in patients carrying TK2 mutations, thus suggesting that loss of TK2 results in neuronal dysfunction. Here, we directly address the role of TK2 in neuronal homeostasis using a knockout mouse model. We demonstrate that in vivo loss of TK2 activity leads to a severe ataxic phenotype, accompanied by reduced mtDNA copy number and decreased steady-state levels of electron transport chain proteins in the brain. In TK2-deficient cerebellar neurons, these abnormalities are associated with impaired mitochondrial bioenergetic function, aberrant mitochondrial ultrastructure and degeneration of selected neuronal types. Overall, our findings demonstrate that TK2 deficiency leads to neuronal dysfunction in vivo, and have important implications for understanding the mechanisms of neurological impairment in MDS.

  8. Synchronization of two Hodgkin-Huxley neurons due to internal noise

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Casado, Jose Manuel

    2003-01-01

    It is well known that a strong coupling can synchronize a population of nonlinear oscillators. This fact has deep implications for the current understanding of information processing by the brain. The focus of this Letter is on the role of conductance noise on a system of two coupled Hodgkin-Huxley neurons in the so-called excitable region, where both neurons are at rest in the absence of noise. It is shown that, in this region, conductance noise allows the neurons to achieve both frequency and phase synchronization. This suggests that internal noise could play a role in the emergence of synchronous neural activity in populations of weakly coupled neurons

  9. Selective alterations of NMDAR function and plasticity in D1 and D2 medium spiny neurons in the nucleus accumbens shell following chronic intermittent ethanol exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renteria, Rafael; Maier, Esther Y; Buske, Tavanna R; Morrisett, Richard A

    2017-01-01

    A major mouse model widely adopted in recent years to induce pronounced ethanol intake is the ethanol vapor model known as "CIE" or "Chronic Intermittent Ethanol." One critical question concerning this model is whether the rapid induction of high blood ethanol levels for such short time periods is sufficient to induce alterations in N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) function which may contribute to excessive ethanol intake. In this study, we determined whether such short term intermittent ethanol exposure modulates NMDAR function as well as other prominent electrophysiological properties and the expression of plasticity in both D1 (D1+) and D2 (D1-) dopamine receptor expressing medium spiny neurons (MSNs) in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) shell. To distinguish between the two subtypes of MSNs in the NAc we treated Drd1a-TdTomato transgenic mice with CIE vapor and electrophysiological recordings were conducted 24 h after the last vapor exposure. To investigate CIE induced alterations in plasticity, long-term depression (LTD) was induced by pairing low frequency stimulation (LFS) with post synaptic depolarization. In ethanol naïve mice, LFS induced synaptic depression (LTD) was apparent exclusively in D1+ MSNs. Whereas in slices prepared from CIE treated mice, LFS induced synaptic potentiation (LTP) in D1+ MSNs. Furthermore, following CIE exposure, LFS now produced LTD in D1- MSNs. We found that CIE exposure induced an increase in excitability in D1+ MSNs with no change in D1- MSNs. After CIE, we found a significant increase in spontaneous EPSCs (sEPSCs) frequency in D1+ but not D1- MSNs suggesting alterations in baseline α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptor (AMPAR) mediated signaling. CIE induced changes in NMDAR function were measured using the NMDA/AMPA ratio and input-output curves of isolated NMDAR currents. We observed a significant increase in NMDAR function in D1+ MSNs and a decrease in D1- MSNs after ethanol vapor exposure. The

  10. Short-Term Depression, Temporal Summation, and Onset Inhibition Shape Interval Tuning in Midbrain Neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, Christa A.

    2014-01-01

    A variety of synaptic mechanisms can contribute to single-neuron selectivity for temporal intervals in sensory stimuli. However, it remains unknown how these mechanisms interact to establish single-neuron sensitivity to temporal patterns of sensory stimulation in vivo. Here we address this question in a circuit that allows us to control the precise temporal patterns of synaptic input to interval-tuned neurons in behaviorally relevant ways. We obtained in vivo intracellular recordings under multiple levels of current clamp from midbrain neurons in the mormyrid weakly electric fish Brienomyrus brachyistius during stimulation with electrosensory pulse trains. To reveal the excitatory and inhibitory inputs onto interval-tuned neurons, we then estimated the synaptic conductances underlying responses. We found short-term depression in excitatory and inhibitory pathways onto all interval-tuned neurons. Short-interval selectivity was associated with excitation that depressed less than inhibition at short intervals, as well as temporally summating excitation. Long-interval selectivity was associated with long-lasting onset inhibition. We investigated tuning after separately nullifying the contributions of temporal summation and depression, and found the greatest diversity of interval selectivity among neurons when both mechanisms were at play. Furthermore, eliminating the effects of depression decreased sensitivity to directional changes in interval. These findings demonstrate that variation in depression and summation of excitation and inhibition helps to establish tuning to behaviorally relevant intervals in communication signals, and that depression contributes to neural coding of interval sequences. This work reveals for the first time how the interplay between short-term plasticity and temporal summation mediates the decoding of temporal sequences in awake, behaving animals. PMID:25339741

  11. Norepinephrine metabolism in neuronal cultures is increased by angiotensin II

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sumners, C.; Shalit, S.L.; Kalberg, C.J.; Raizada, M.K.

    1987-01-01

    In this study the authors have examined the actions of angiotensin II (ANG II) on catecholamine metabolism in neuronal brain cell cultures prepared from the hypothalamus and brain stem. Neuronal cultures prepared from the brains of 1-day-old Sprague-Dawley rats exhibit specific neuronal uptake mechanisms for both norepinephrine (NE) and dopamine (DA), and also monoamine oxidase (MAO) and catechol O-methyltransferase (COMT) activity. Separate neuronal uptake sites for NE and DA were identified by using specific neuronal uptake inhibitors for each amine. In previous studies, they determined that ANG II (10 nM-1 μM) stimulates increased neuronal [ 3 H]NE uptake by acting as specific receptors. They have confirmed these results here and in addition have shown that ANG II has not significant effects on neuronal [ 3 H]DA uptake. These results suggest that the actions of ANG II are restricted to the NE transporter in neuronal cultures. It is possible that ANG II stimulates the intraneuronal metabolism of at least part of the NE that is taken up, because the peptide stimulates MAO activity, an effect mediated by specific ANG II receptors. ANG II had no effect on COMT activity in neuronal cultures. Therefore, the use of neuronal cultures of hypothalamus and brain stem they have determined that ANG II can specifically alter NE metabolism in these areas, while apparently not altering DA metabolism

  12. Evidence that BDNF regulates heart rate by a mechanism involving increased brainstem parasympathetic neuron excitability

    OpenAIRE

    Wan, Ruiqian; Weigand, Letitia A.; Bateman, Ryan; Griffioen, Kathleen; Mendelowitz, David; Mattson, Mark P.

    2014-01-01

    Autonomic control of heart rate is mediated by cardioinhibitory parasympathetic cholinergic neurons located in the brainstem and stimulatory sympathetic noradrenergic neurons. During embryonic development the survival and cholinergic phenotype of brainstem autonomic neurons is promoted by brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). We now provide evidence that BDNF regulates heart rate by a mechanism involving increased brainstem cardioinhibitory parasympathetic activity. Mice with a BDNF haplo...

  13. Hyperosmolar Tears Induce Functional and Structural Alterations of Corneal Nerves: Electrophysiological and Anatomical Evidence Toward Neurotoxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hirata, Harumitsu; Mizerska, Kamila; Marfurt, Carl F; Rosenblatt, Mark I

    2015-12-01

    In an effort to elucidate possible neural mechanisms underlying diminished tearing in dry eye disease, this study sought to determine if hyperosmolar tears, a ubiquitous sign of dry eye disease, produce functional changes in corneal nerve responses to drying of the cornea and if these changes correlate with alterations in corneal nerve morphology. In vivo extracellular electrophysiological recordings were performed in rat trigeminal ganglion neurons that innervated the cornea before, and up to 3 hours after, the ocular application of continuous hyperosmolar tears or artificial tears. In corollary experiments, immunohistochemical staining was performed to compare corneal nerve morphology in control and in eyes treated with hyperosmolar solutions. Our previous studies identified a population of corneal afferents, dry-sensitive neurons that are strongly excited by corneal dessication ("dry response"), a response thought to trigger the lacrimation reflex. In the present study, we found that the dry responses of corneal dry-sensitive neurons were depressed or even completely abolished by hyperosmolar tears in a time- (30 minutes to 3 hours) and dose (450- to 1000-mOsm solutions)-dependent manner. Furthermore, eyes treated with hyperosmolar tears for 3 hours contained large numbers of morphologically abnormal (granular, fragmented, or prominently beaded) subbasal nerves that appeared to be undergoing degeneration. These results demonstrate that tear hyperosmolarity, considered to be a "core" mechanism of dry eye disease, significantly decreases physiological sensitivity and morphologic integrity of the corneal nerves important in tear production. These alterations might contribute to the diminished tearing seen clinically in dry eye patients.

  14. α-Synuclein fibril-induced paradoxical structural and functional defects in hippocampal neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Froula, Jessica M; Henderson, Benjamin W; Gonzalez, Jose Carlos; Vaden, Jada H; Mclean, John W; Wu, Yumei; Banumurthy, Gokulakrishna; Overstreet-Wadiche, Linda; Herskowitz, Jeremy H; Volpicelli-Daley, Laura A

    2018-05-01

    Neuronal inclusions composed of α-synuclein (α-syn) characterize Parkinson's Disease (PD) and Dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB). Cognitive dysfunction defines DLB, and up to 80% of PD patients develop dementia. α-Syn inclusions are abundant in the hippocampus, yet functional consequences are unclear. To determine if pathologic α-syn causes neuronal defects, we induced endogenous α-syn to form inclusions resembling those found in diseased brains by treating hippocampal neurons with α-syn fibrils. At seven days after adding fibrils, α-syn inclusions are abundant in axons, but there is no cell death at this time point, allowing us to assess for potential alterations in neuronal function that are not caused by neuron death. We found that exposure of neurons to fibrils caused a significant reduction in mushroom spine densities, adding to the growing body of literature showing that altered spine morphology is a major pathologic phenotype in synucleinopathies. The reduction in spine densities occurred only in wild type neurons and not in neurons from α-syn knockout mice, suggesting that the changes in spine morphology result from fibril-induced corruption of endogenously expressed α-syn. Paradoxically, reduced postsynaptic spine density was accompanied by increased frequency of miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) and presynaptic docked vesicles, suggesting enhanced presynaptic function. Action-potential dependent activity was unchanged, suggesting compensatory mechanisms responding to synaptic defects. Although activity at the level of the synapse was unchanged, neurons exposed to α-syn fibrils, showed reduced frequency and amplitudes of spontaneous Ca 2+ transients. These findings open areas of research to determine the mechanisms that alter neuronal function in brain regions critical for cognition at time points before neuron death.

  15. Age Is Associated with Reduced Sharp-Wave Ripple Frequency and Altered Patterns of Neuronal Variability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiegand, Jean-Paul L; Gray, Daniel T; Schimanski, Lesley A; Lipa, Peter; Barnes, C A; Cowen, Stephen L

    2016-05-18

    Spatial and episodic memory performance declines with age, and the neural basis for this decline is not well understood. Sharp-wave ripples are brief (∼70 ms) high-frequency oscillatory events generated in the hippocampus and are associated with the consolidation of spatial memories. Given the connection between ripple oscillations and memory consolidation, we investigated whether the structure of ripple oscillations and ripple-triggered patterns of single-unit activity are altered in aged rats. Local field and single-unit activity surrounding sharp-wave ripple events were examined in the CA1 region of the hippocampus of old (n = 5) and young (n = 6) F344 rats during periods of rest preceding and following performance on a place-dependent eyeblink-conditioning task. Neural responses in aged rats differed from responses in young rats in several ways. First, compared with young rats, the rate of ripple occurrence (ripple density) is reduced in aged rats during postbehavior rest. Second, mean ripple frequency during prebehavior and postbehavior rest is lower in aged animals (aged: 132 Hz; young: 146 Hz). Third, single neurons in aged animals responded more consistently from ripple to ripple. Fourth, variability in interspike intervals was greater in aged rats. Finally, neurons were tuned to a narrower range of phases of the ripple oscillation relative to young animals. Together, these results suggest that the CA1 network in aged animals has a reduced "vocabulary" of available representational states. The hippocampus is a structure that is critical for the formation of episodic memories. Sharp-wave ripple events generated in the hippocampus have been implicated in memory consolidation processes critical to memory stabilization. We examine here whether these ripple oscillations are altered over the course of the life span, which could contribute to hippocampus-dependent memory deficits that occur during aging. This experiment used young and aged memory-impaired rats

  16. Orientation selectivity of synaptic input to neurons in mouse and cat primary visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, Andrew Y Y; Brown, Brandon D; Scholl, Benjamin; Mohanty, Deepankar; Priebe, Nicholas J

    2011-08-24

    Primary visual cortex (V1) is the site at which orientation selectivity emerges in mammals: visual thalamus afferents to V1 respond equally to all stimulus orientations, whereas their target V1 neurons respond selectively to stimulus orientation. The emergence of orientation selectivity in V1 has long served as a model for investigating cortical computation. Recent evidence for orientation selectivity in mouse V1 opens cortical computation to dissection by genetic and imaging tools, but also raises two essential questions: (1) How does orientation selectivity in mouse V1 neurons compare with that in previously described species? (2) What is the synaptic basis for orientation selectivity in mouse V1? A comparison of orientation selectivity in mouse and in cat, where such measures have traditionally been made, reveals that orientation selectivity in mouse V1 is weaker than in cat V1, but that spike threshold plays a similar role in narrowing selectivity between membrane potential and spike rate. To uncover the synaptic basis for orientation selectivity, we made whole-cell recordings in vivo from mouse V1 neurons, comparing neuronal input selectivity-based on membrane potential, synaptic excitation, and synaptic inhibition-to output selectivity based on spiking. We found that a neuron's excitatory and inhibitory inputs are selective for the same stimulus orientations as is its membrane potential response, and that inhibitory selectivity is not broader than excitatory selectivity. Inhibition has different dynamics than excitation, adapting more rapidly. In neurons with temporally modulated responses, the timing of excitation and inhibition was different in mice and cats.

  17. Optogenetic Stimulation of Locus Ceruleus Neurons Augments Inhibitory Transmission to Parasympathetic Cardiac Vagal Neurons via Activation of Brainstem α1 and β1 Receptors

    OpenAIRE

    Wang, Xin; Piñol, Ramón A.; Byrne, Peter; Mendelowitz, David

    2014-01-01

    Locus ceruleus (LC) noradrenergic neurons are critical in generating alertness. In addition to inducing cortical arousal, the LC also orchestrates changes in accompanying autonomic system function that compliments increased attention, such as during stress, excitation, and/or exposure to averse or novel stimuli. Although the association between arousal and increased heart rate is well accepted, the neurobiological link between the LC and parasympathetic neurons that control heart rate has not...

  18. Experimental and theoretical evidence for fluctuation driven activations in an excitable chemical system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hastings, Harold; Sobel, Sabrina; Field, Richard; Minchenberg, Scott; Spinelli, Nicole; Zauderer, Keith

    2011-03-01

    An excitable medium is a system in which small perturbations die out, but sufficiently large perturbations generate large ``excitations.'' Biological examples include neurons and the heart; the latter supports waves of excitation normally generated by the sinus node, but occasionally generated by other mechanisms. The ferroin-catalyzed Belousov-Zhabotinsky reaction is the prototype chemical excitable medium. We present experimental and theoretical evidence for that random fluctuations can generate excitations in the Belousov-Zhabothinsky reaction. Although the heart is significantly different, there are some scaling analogies. This material is based upon work supported by the Department of Energy under Award Number DE-FG02-08ER64623.

  19. Peripheral drive in Aα/β-fiber neurons is altered in a rat model of osteoarthritis: changes in following frequency and recovery from inactivation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wu Q

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Qi Wu, James L HenryDepartment of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences, McMaster University, Hamilton, ON, CanadaPurpose: To determine conduction fidelity of Aα/β-fiber low threshold mechanoreceptors in a model of osteoarthritis (OA.Methods: Four weeks after cutting the anterior cruciate ligament and removing the medial meniscus to induce the model, in vivo intracellular recordings were made in ipsilateral L4 dorsal root ganglion neurons. L4 dorsal roots were stimulated to determine the refractory interval and the maximum following frequency of the evoked action potential (AP. Neurons exhibited two types of response to paired pulse stimulation. Results: One type of response was characterized by fractionation of the evoked AP into an initial nonmyelinated-spike and a later larger-amplitude somatic-spike at shorter interstimulus intervals. The other type of response was characterized by an all-or-none AP, where the second evoked AP failed altogether at shorter interstimulus intervals. In OA versus control animals, the refractory interval measured in paired pulse testing was less in all low threshold mechanoreceptors. With train stimulation, the maximum rising rate of the nonmyelinated-spike was greater in OA nonmuscle spindle low threshold mechanoreceptors, possibly due to changes in fast kinetics of currents. Maximum following frequency in Pacinian and muscle spindle neurons was greater in model animals compared to controls. Train stimulation also induced an inactivation and fractionation of the AP in neurons that showed fractionation of the AP in paired pulse testing. However, with train stimulation this fractionation followed a different time course, suggesting more than one type of inactivation.Conclusion: The data suggest that joint damage can lead to changes in the fidelity of AP conduction of large diameter sensory neurons, muscle spindle neurons in particular, arising from articular and nonarticular tissues in OA animals compared to

  20. Cerebral haemodynamic response or excitability is not affected by sildenafil

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kruuse, Christina; Hansen, Adam E; Larsson, Henrik B W

    2009-01-01

    Sildenafil (Viagra), a cyclic guanosine monophosphate-degrading phosphodiesterase 5 inhibitor, induces headache and migraine. Such headache induction may be caused by an increased neuronal excitability, as no concurrent effect on cerebral arteries is found. In 13 healthy females (23+/-3 years, 70...... amplitude or latency (P100). The fMRI response to visual stimulation or hypercapnia was unchanged by sildenafil. In conclusion, sildenafil induces mild headache without potentiating a neuronal or local cerebrovascular visual response or a global cerebrovascular hypercapnic response. The implication...

  1. Stress activates pronociceptive endogenous opioid signalling in DRG neurons during chronic colitis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerrero-Alba, Raquel; Valdez-Morales, Eduardo E; Jimenez-Vargas, Nestor N; Lopez-Lopez, Cintya; Jaramillo-Polanco, Josue; Okamoto, Takanobu; Nasser, Yasmin; Bunnett, Nigel W; Lomax, Alan E; Vanner, Stephen J

    2017-12-01

    Psychological stress accompanies chronic inflammatory diseases such as IBD, and stress hormones can exacerbate pain signalling. In contrast, the endogenous opioid system has an important analgesic action during chronic inflammation. This study examined the interaction of these pathways. Mouse nociceptive dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons were incubated with supernatants from segments of inflamed colon collected from patients with chronic UC and mice with dextran sodium sulfate (cDSS)-induced chronic colitis. Stress effects were studied by adding stress hormones (epinephrine and corticosterone) to dissociated neurons or by exposing cDSS mice to water avoidance stress. Changes in excitability of colonic DRG nociceptors were measured using patch clamp and Ca 2+ imaging techniques. Supernatants from patients with chronic UC and from colons of mice with chronic colitis caused a naloxone-sensitive inhibition of neuronal excitability and capsaicin-evoked Ca 2+ responses. Stress hormones decreased signalling induced by human and mouse supernatants. This effect resulted from stress hormones signalling directly to DRG neurons and indirectly through signalling to the immune system, leading to decreased opioid levels and increased acute inflammation. The net effect of stress was a change endogenous opioid signalling in DRG neurons from an inhibitory to an excitatory effect. This switch was associated with a change in G protein-coupled receptor excitatory signalling to a pathway sensitive to inhibitors of protein kinase A-protein, phospholipase C-protein and G protein βϒ subunits. Stress hormones block the inhibitory actions of endogenous opioids and can change the effect of opioid signalling in DRG neurons to excitation. Targeting these pathways may prevent heavy opioid use in IBD. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to http://www.bmj.com/company/products-services/rights-and-licensing/.

  2. Orexins excite ventrolateral geniculate nucleus neurons predominantly via OX2 receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chrobok, Lukasz; Palus, Katarzyna; Lewandowski, Marian Henryk

    2016-04-01

    Orexins/hypocretins are two neuropeptides that influence many behaviours, such as feeding, sleep or arousal. Orexin A/hypocretin-1 (OXA) and orexin B/hypocretin-2 (OXB) bind to two metabotropic receptors, named the OX1 and OX2 receptors. The lateral geniculate complex of the thalamus is one of the many targets of orexinergic fibres derived from the lateral hypothalamus, although the impact of orexins on the ventrolateral geniculate nucleus (VLG) is poorly understood. The VLG, an important relay station of the subcortical visual system, is implicated in visuomotor and/or circadian processes. Therefore, in this study we evaluated the effects of orexins on single VLG neurons using a patch-clamp technique in vitro. Surprisingly, orexins depolarised the majority of the recorded neurons regardless of their localisation in the borders of the VLG. In addition, data presented in this article show that neurons synthesising NO were also affected by OXA. Moreover, immunohistochemical staining of OXB revealed the moderate density of orexinergic fibbers in the VLG. Our study using specific orexin receptor antagonists suggests that the OX2 receptor has a dominant role in the observed effects of OXA. To our knowledge, this article is the first to show orexinergic modulation of the VLG. These findings strengthen the postulated link between orexins and the circadian system, and propose a new role of these neuropeptides in the modulation of visuomotor functions. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Cholesterol up-regulates neuronal G protein-gated inwardly rectifying potassium (GIRK) channel activity in the hippocampus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bukiya, Anna N; Durdagi, Serdar; Noskov, Sergei; Rosenhouse-Dantsker, Avia

    2017-04-14

    Hypercholesterolemia is a well known risk factor for the development of neurodegenerative disease. However, the underlying mechanisms are mostly unknown. In recent years, it has become increasingly evident that cholesterol-driven effects on physiology and pathophysiology derive from its ability to alter the function of a variety of membrane proteins including ion channels. Yet, the effect of cholesterol on G protein-gated inwardly rectifying potassium (GIRK) channels expressed in the brain is unknown. GIRK channels mediate the actions of inhibitory brain neurotransmitters. As a result, loss of GIRK function can enhance neuron excitability, whereas gain of GIRK function can reduce neuronal activity. Here we show that in rats on a high-cholesterol diet, cholesterol levels in hippocampal neurons are increased. We also demonstrate that cholesterol plays a critical role in modulating neuronal GIRK currents. Specifically, cholesterol enrichment of rat hippocampal neurons resulted in enhanced channel activity. In accordance, elevated currents upon cholesterol enrichment were also observed in Xenopus oocytes expressing GIRK2 channels, the primary GIRK subunit expressed in the brain. Furthermore, using planar lipid bilayers, we show that although cholesterol did not affect the unitary conductance of GIRK2, it significantly enhanced the frequency of channel openings. Last, combining computational and functional approaches, we identified two putative cholesterol-binding sites in the transmembrane domain of GIRK2. These findings establish that cholesterol plays a critical role in modulating GIRK activity in the brain. Because up-regulation of GIRK function can reduce neuronal activity, our findings may lead to novel approaches for prevention and therapy of cholesterol-driven neurodegenerative disease. © 2017 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  4. Reduction in spontaneous firing of mouse excitatory layer 4 cortical neurons following visual classical conditioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bekisz, Marek; Shendye, Ninad; Raciborska, Ida; Wróbel, Andrzej; Waleszczyk, Wioletta J.

    2017-08-01

    The process of learning induces plastic changes in neuronal network of the brain. Our earlier studies on mice showed that classical conditioning in which monocular visual stimulation was paired with an electric shock to the tail enhanced GABA immunoreactivity within layer 4 of the monocular part of the primary visual cortex (V1), contralaterally to the stimulated eye. In the present experiment we investigated whether the same classical conditioning paradigm induces changes of neuronal excitability in this cortical area. Two experimental groups were used: mice that underwent 7-day visual classical conditioning and controls. Patch-clamp whole-cell recordings were performed from ex vivo slices of mouse V1. The slices were perfused with the modified artificial cerebrospinal fluid, the composition of which better mimics the brain interstitial fluid in situ and induces spontaneous activity. The neuronal excitability was characterized by measuring the frequency of spontaneous action potentials. We found that layer 4 star pyramidal cells located in the monocular representation of the "trained" eye in V1 had lower frequency of spontaneous activity in comparison with neurons from the same cortical region of control animals. Weaker spontaneous firing indicates decreased general excitability of star pyramidal neurons within layer 4 of the monocular representation of the "trained" eye in V1. Such effect could result from enhanced inhibitory processes accompanying learning in this cortical area.

  5. Induction of hypertension blunts baroreflex inhibition of vasopressin neurons in the rat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Su Young; Bouwer, Gregory T; Seymour, Alexander J; Korpal, Aaron K; Schwenke, Daryl O; Brown, Colin H

    2015-11-01

    Vasopressin secretion from the posterior pituitary gland is determined by action potential discharge of hypothalamic magnocellular neurosecretory cells. Vasopressin is a potent vasoconstrictor, but vasopressin levels are paradoxically elevated in some patients with established hypertension. To determine whether vasopressin neurons are excited in hypertension, extracellular single-unit recordings of vasopressin neurons from urethane-anaesthetized Cyp1a1-Ren2 rats with inducible angiotensin-dependent hypertension were made. The basal firing rate of vasopressin neurons was higher in hypertensive Cyp1a1-Ren2 rats than in non-hypertensive Cyp1a1-Ren2 rats. The increase in firing rate was specific to vasopressin neurons because oxytocin neuron firing rate was unaffected by the induction of hypertension. Intravenous injection of the α1-adrenoreceptor agonist, phenylephrine (2.5 μg/kg), transiently increased mean arterial blood pressure to cause a baroreflex-induced inhibition of heart rate and vasopressin neuron firing rate (by 52 ± 9%) in non-hypertensive rats. By contrast, intravenous phenylephrine did not inhibit vasopressin neurons in hypertensive rats, despite a similar increase in mean arterial blood pressure and inhibition of heart rate. Circulating angiotensin II can excite vasopressin neurons via activation of afferent inputs from the subfornical organ. However, the increase in vasopressin neuron firing rate and the loss of inhibition by intravenous phenylephrine were not blocked by intra-subfornical organ infusion of the angiotensin AT1 receptor antagonist, losartan. It can be concluded that increased vasopressin neuron activity at the onset of hypertension is driven, at least in part, by reduced baroreflex inhibition of vasopressin neurons and that this might exacerbate the increase in blood pressure at the onset of hypertension. © 2015 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  6. Neurodegeneration in Autoimmune Optic Neuritis Is Associated with Altered APP Cleavage in Neurons and Up-Regulation of p53.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sabine Herold

    Full Text Available Multiple Sclerosis (MS is a chronic autoimmune inflammatory disease of the central nervous system (CNS. Histopathological and radiological analysis revealed that neurodegeneration occurs early in the disease course. However, the pathological mechanisms involved in neurodegeneration are poorly understood. Myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein (MOG-induced experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE in Brown Norway rats (BN-rats is a well-established animal model, especially of the neurodegenerative aspects of MS. Previous studies in this animal model indicated that loss of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs, the neurons that form the axons of the optic nerve, occurs in the preclinical phase of the disease and is in part independent of overt histopathological changes of the optic nerve. Therefore, the aim of this study was to identify genes which are involved in neuronal cell loss at different disease stages of EAE. Furthermore, genes that are highly specific for autoimmune-driven neurodegeneration were compared to those regulated in RGCs after optic nerve axotomy at corresponding time points. Using laser capture micro dissection we isolated RNA from unfixed RGCs and performed global transcriptome analysis of retinal neurons. In total, we detected 582 genes sequentially expressed in the preclinical phase and 1150 genes in the clinical manifest EAE (P 1.5. Furthermore, using ingenuity pathway analysis (IPA, we identified amyloid precursor protein (APP as a potential upstream regulator of changes in gene expression in the preclinical EAE but neither in clinical EAE, nor at any time point after optic nerve transection. Therefore, the gene pathway analysis lead to the hypothesis that altered cleavage of APP in neurons in the preclinical phase of EAE leads to the enhanced production of APP intracellular domain (AICD, which in turn acts as a transcriptional regulator and thereby initiates an apoptotic signaling cascade via up-regulation of the target gene p

  7. Regulation of hypothalamic neuronal sensing and food intake by ketone bodies and fatty acids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Foll, Christelle; Dunn-Meynell, Ambrose A; Miziorko, Henri M; Levin, Barry E

    2014-04-01

    Metabolic sensing neurons in the ventromedial hypothalamus (VMH) alter their activity when ambient levels of metabolic substrates, such as glucose and fatty acids (FA), change. To assess the relationship between a high-fat diet (HFD; 60%) intake on feeding and serum and VMH FA levels, rats were trained to eat a low-fat diet (LFD; 13.5%) or an HFD in 3 h/day and were monitored with VMH FA microdialysis. Despite having higher serum levels, HFD rats had lower VMH FA levels but ate less from 3 to 6 h of refeeding than did LFD rats. However, VMH β-hydroxybutyrate (β-OHB) and VMH-to-serum β-OHB ratio levels were higher in HFD rats during the first 1 h of refeeding, suggesting that VMH astrocyte ketone production mediated their reduced intake. In fact, using calcium imaging in dissociated VMH neurons showed that ketone bodies overrode normal FA sensing, primarily by exciting neurons that were activated or inhibited by oleic acid. Importantly, bilateral inhibition of VMH ketone production with a 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA synthase inhibitor reversed the 3- to 6-h HFD-induced inhibition of intake but had no effect in LFD-fed rats. These data suggest that a restricted HFD intake regimen inhibits caloric intake as a consequence of FA-induced VMH ketone body production by astrocytes.

  8. Disorder-induced localization of excitability in an array of coupled lasers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lamperti, M.; Perego, A. M.

    2017-10-01

    We report on the localization of excitability induced by disorder in an array of coupled semiconductor lasers with a saturable absorber. Through numerical simulations we show that the exponential localization of excitable waves occurs if a certain critical amount of randomness is present in the coupling coefficients among the lasers. The results presented in this Rapid Communication demonstrate that disorder can induce localization in lattices of excitable nonlinear oscillators, and can be of interest in the study of photonics-based random networks, neuromorphic systems, and, by analogy, in biology, in particular, in the investigation of the collective dynamics of neuronal cell populations.

  9. Inflammation alters AMPA-stimulated calcium responses in dorsal striatal D2 but not D1 spiny projection neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winland, Carissa D; Welsh, Nora; Sepulveda-Rodriguez, Alberto; Vicini, Stefano; Maguire-Zeiss, Kathleen A

    2017-11-01

    Neuroinflammation precedes neuronal loss in striatal neurodegenerative diseases and can be exacerbated by the release of proinflammatory molecules by microglia. These molecules can affect trafficking of AMPARs. The preferential trafficking of calcium-permeable versus impermeable AMPARs can result in disruptions of [Ca 2+ ] i and alter cellular functions. In striatal neurodegenerative diseases, changes in [Ca 2+ ] i and L-type voltage-gated calcium channels (VGCCs) have been reported. Therefore, this study sought to determine whether a proinflammatory environment alters AMPA-stimulated [Ca 2+ ] i through calcium-permeable AMPARs and/or L-type VGCCs in dopamine-2- and dopamine-1-expressing striatal spiny projection neurons (D2 and D1 SPNs) in the dorsal striatum. Mice expressing the calcium indicator protein, GCaMP in D2 or D1 SPNs, were utilized for calcium imaging. Microglial activation was assessed by morphology analyses. To induce inflammation, acute mouse striatal slices were incubated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS). Here we report that LPS treatment potentiated AMPA responses only in D2 SPNs. When a nonspecific VGCC blocker was included, we observed a decrease of AMPA-stimulated calcium fluorescence in D2 but not D1 SPNs. The remaining agonist-induced [Ca 2+ ] i was mediated by calcium-permeable AMPARs because the responses were completely blocked by a selective calcium-permeable AMPAR antagonist. We used isradipine, the highly selective L-type VGCC antagonist to determine the role of L-type VGCCs in SPNs treated with LPS. Isradipine decreased AMPA-stimulated responses selectively in D2 SPNs after LPS treatment. Our findings suggest that dorsal striatal D2 SPNs are specifically targeted in proinflammatory conditions and that L-type VGCCs and calcium-permeable AMPARs are important mediators of this effect. © 2017 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. Constructing Precisely Computing Networks with Biophysical Spiking Neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwemmer, Michael A; Fairhall, Adrienne L; Denéve, Sophie; Shea-Brown, Eric T

    2015-07-15

    While spike timing has been shown to carry detailed stimulus information at the sensory periphery, its possible role in network computation is less clear. Most models of computation by neural networks are based on population firing rates. In equivalent spiking implementations, firing is assumed to be random such that averaging across populations of neurons recovers the rate-based approach. Recently, however, Denéve and colleagues have suggested that the spiking behavior of neurons may be fundamental to how neuronal networks compute, with precise spike timing determined by each neuron's contribution to producing the desired output (Boerlin and Denéve, 2011; Boerlin et al., 2013). By postulating that each neuron fires to reduce the error in the network's output, it was demonstrated that linear computations can be performed by networks of integrate-and-fire neurons that communicate through instantaneous synapses. This left open, however, the possibility that realistic networks, with conductance-based neurons with subthreshold nonlinearity and the slower timescales of biophysical synapses, may not fit into this framework. Here, we show how the spike-based approach can be extended to biophysically plausible networks. We then show that our network reproduces a number of key features of cortical networks including irregular and Poisson-like spike times and a tight balance between excitation and inhibition. Lastly, we discuss how the behavior of our model scales with network size or with the number of neurons "recorded" from a larger computing network. These results significantly increase the biological plausibility of the spike-based approach to network computation. We derive a network of neurons with standard spike-generating currents and synapses with realistic timescales that computes based upon the principle that the precise timing of each spike is important for the computation. We then show that our network reproduces a number of key features of cortical networks

  11. Neuronal excitation and permeabilization by 200-ns pulsed electric field: An optical membrane potential study with FluoVolt dye.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pakhomov, Andrei G; Semenov, Iurii; Casciola, Maura; Xiao, Shu

    2017-07-01

    Electric field pulses of nano- and picosecond duration are a novel modality for neurostimulation, activation of Ca 2+ signaling, and tissue ablation. However it is not known how such brief pulses activate voltage-gated ion channels. We studied excitation and electroporation of hippocampal neurons by 200-ns pulsed electric field (nsPEF), by means of time-lapse imaging of the optical membrane potential (OMP) with FluoVolt dye. Electroporation abruptly shifted OMP to a more depolarized level, which was reached within 10s), so cells remained above the resting OMP level for at least 20-30s. Activation of voltage-gated sodium channels (VGSC) enhanced the depolarizing effect of electroporation, resulting in an additional tetrodotoxin-sensitive OMP peak in 4-5ms after nsPEF. Omitting Ca 2+ in the extracellular solution did not reduce the depolarization, suggesting no contribution of voltage-gated calcium channels (VGCC). In 40% of neurons, nsPEF triggered a single action potential (AP), with the median threshold of 3kV/cm (range: 1.9-4kV/cm); no APs could be evoked by stimuli below the electroporation threshold (1.5-1.9kV/cm). VGSC opening could already be detected in 0.5ms after nsPEF, which is too fast to be mediated by the depolarizing effect of electroporation. The overlap of electroporation and AP thresholds does not necessarily reflect the causal relation, but suggests a low potency of nsPEF, as compared to conventional electrostimulation, for VGSC activation and AP induction. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. A multisensory centrifugal neuron in the olfactory pathway of heliothine moths

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhao, Xin-Cheng; Pfuhl, Gerit; Surlykke, Annemarie

    2013-01-01

    fine processes in the dorsomedial region of the protocerebrum and extensive neuronal branches with blebby terminals in all glomeruli of the antennal lobe. Its soma is located dorsally of the central body close to the brain midline. Mass-fills of antennal-lobe connections with protocerebral regions...... showed that the centrifugal neuron is, in each brain hemisphere, one within a small group of neurons having their somata clustered. In both species the neuron was excited during application of non-odorant airborne signals, including transient sound pulses of broad bandwidth and air velocity changes....... Additional responses to odors were recorded from the neuron in Heliothis virescens. The putative biological significance of the centrifugal antennal-lobe neuron is discussed with regard to its morphological and physiological properties. In particular, a possible role in multisensory processes underlying...

  13. Diffusion MRI and the Detection of Alterations Following Traumatic Brain Injury

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-06-13

    vascular injury, disruption of water home- ostasis), changes in tissue composition (e.g., increased or decreased cellu- larity), and alterations in...related alterations Tissue environment Expected diffusion changes Major citations dMRI evidence Neurons cell loss necrosis and apoptosis atrophy...structure and signaling, vascular coupling, and waste removal, among others. Astrocytes are at least as numerous as neurons in the brain (Herculano-Houzel

  14. Synaptic Plasticity and Spike Synchronisation in Neuronal Networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borges, Rafael R.; Borges, Fernando S.; Lameu, Ewandson L.; Protachevicz, Paulo R.; Iarosz, Kelly C.; Caldas, Iberê L.; Viana, Ricardo L.; Macau, Elbert E. N.; Baptista, Murilo S.; Grebogi, Celso; Batista, Antonio M.

    2017-12-01

    Brain plasticity, also known as neuroplasticity, is a fundamental mechanism of neuronal adaptation in response to changes in the environment or due to brain injury. In this review, we show our results about the effects of synaptic plasticity on neuronal networks composed by Hodgkin-Huxley neurons. We show that the final topology of the evolved network depends crucially on the ratio between the strengths of the inhibitory and excitatory synapses. Excitation of the same order of inhibition revels an evolved network that presents the rich-club phenomenon, well known to exist in the brain. For initial networks with considerably larger inhibitory strengths, we observe the emergence of a complex evolved topology, where neurons sparsely connected to other neurons, also a typical topology of the brain. The presence of noise enhances the strength of both types of synapses, but if the initial network has synapses of both natures with similar strengths. Finally, we show how the synchronous behaviour of the evolved network will reflect its evolved topology.

  15. Interleukin-18 alters protein expressions of neurodegenerative diseases-linked proteins in human SH-SY5Y neuron-like cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elina M Sutinen

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Chronic inflammation and oxidative stress (OS are present in Alzheimer´s disease (AD brains in addition to neuronal loss, Amyloid-β (Aβ plaques and hyperphosphorylated tau-protein neurofibrillary tangles. Previously we showed that levels of the pro-inflammatory cytokine, interleukin-18 (IL-18, are elevated in post-mortem AD brains. IL-18 can modulate the tau kinases, Cdk5 and GSK3β, as well as Aβ-production. IL-18 levels are also increased in AD risk diseases, including type-2 diabetes and obesity. Here, we explored other IL-18 regulated proteins in neuron-like SH-SY5Y cells. Differentiated SH-SY5Y cells, incubated with IL-18 for 24, 48 or 72h, were analyzed by two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2D-DIGE. Specific altered protein spots were chosen and identified with mass spectrometry and verified by western immunoblotting. IL-18 had time-dependent effects on the SH-SY5Y proteome, modulating numerous protein levels/modifications. We concentrated on those related to OS (DDAH2, peroxiredoxins 2, 3 and 6, DJ-1, BLVRA, Aβ-degradation (MMP14, TIMP2, Aβ-aggregation (Septin-2 and modifications of axon growth and guidance associated, collapsing response mediator protein 2 (CRMP2. IL-18 significantly increased antioxidative enzymes, indicative of OS, and altered levels of glycolytic α- and γ-enolase and multifunctional 14-3-3γ and -ε, commonly affected in neurodegenerative diseases. MMP14, TIMP2, α-enolase and 14-3-3ε, indirectly involved in Aβ metabolism, as well as Septin-2 showed changes that increase Aβ levels. Increased 14-3-3γ may contribute to GSK3β driven tau hyperphosphorylation and CRMP2 Thr514 and Ser522 phosphorylation with the Thr555-site, a target for Rho kinase, showing time-dependent changes. IL-18 also increased caspase-1 levels and vacuolization of the cells. Although our SH-SY5Y cells were not aged, as neurons in AD, our work suggests that heightened or prolonged IL-18 levels can drive protein changes of known

  16. Mode-locking behavior of Izhikevich neurons under periodic external forcing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farokhniaee, AmirAli; Large, Edward W.

    2017-06-01

    Many neurons in the auditory system of the brain must encode periodic signals. These neurons under periodic stimulation display rich dynamical states including mode locking and chaotic responses. Periodic stimuli such as sinusoidal waves and amplitude modulated sounds can lead to various forms of n :m mode-locked states, in which a neuron fires n action potentials per m cycles of the stimulus. Here, we study mode-locking in the Izhikevich neurons, a reduced model of the Hodgkin-Huxley neurons. The Izhikevich model is much simpler in terms of the dimension of the coupled nonlinear differential equations compared with other existing models, but excellent for generating the complex spiking patterns observed in real neurons. We obtained the regions of existence of the various mode-locked states on the frequency-amplitude plane, called Arnold tongues, for the Izhikevich neurons. Arnold tongue analysis provides useful insight into the organization of mode-locking behavior of neurons under periodic forcing. We find these tongues for both class-1 and class-2 excitable neurons in both deterministic and noisy regimes.

  17. Dynamical patterns of calcium signaling in a functional model of neuron-astrocyte networks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Postnov, D.E.; Koreshkov, R.N.; Brazhe, N.A.

    2009-01-01

    We propose a functional mathematical model for neuron-astrocyte networks. The model incorporates elements of the tripartite synapse and the spatial branching structure of coupled astrocytes. We consider glutamate-induced calcium signaling as a specific mode of excitability and transmission...... in astrocytic-neuronal networks. We reproduce local and global dynamical patterns observed experimentally....

  18. Ube3a loss increases excitability and blunts orientation tuning in the visual cortex of Angelman syndrome model mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wallace, Michael L; van Woerden, Geeske M; Elgersma, Ype; Smith, Spencer L; Philpot, Benjamin D

    2017-07-01

    Angelman syndrome (AS) is a neurodevelopmental disorder caused by loss of the maternally inherited allele of UBE3A Ube3a STOP/p+ mice recapitulate major features of AS in humans and allow conditional reinstatement of maternal Ube3a with the expression of Cre recombinase. We have recently shown that AS model mice exhibit reduced inhibitory drive onto layer (L)2/3 pyramidal neurons of visual cortex, which contributes to a synaptic excitatory/inhibitory imbalance. However, it remains unclear how this loss of inhibitory drive affects neural circuits in vivo. Here we examined visual cortical response properties in individual neurons to explore the consequences of Ube3a loss on intact cortical circuits and processing. Using in vivo patch-clamp electrophysiology, we measured the visually evoked responses to square-wave drifting gratings in L2/3 regular-spiking (RS) neurons in control mice, Ube3a -deficient mice, and mice in which Ube3a was conditionally reinstated in GABAergic neurons. We found that Ube3a -deficient mice exhibited enhanced pyramidal neuron excitability in vivo as well as weaker orientation tuning. These observations are the first to show alterations in cortical computation in an AS model, and they suggest a basis for cortical dysfunction in AS. NEW & NOTEWORTHY Angelman syndrome (AS) is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder caused by the loss of the gene UBE3A Using electrophysiological recording in vivo, we describe visual cortical dysfunctions in a mouse model of AS. Aberrant cellular properties in AS model mice could be improved by reinstating Ube3a in inhibitory neurons. These findings suggest that inhibitory neurons play a substantial role in the pathogenesis of AS. Copyright © 2017 the American Physiological Society.

  19. Transient extracellular application of gold nanostars increases hippocampal neuronal activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salinas, Kirstie; Kereselidze, Zurab; DeLuna, Frank; Peralta, Xomalin G; Santamaria, Fidel

    2014-08-20

    With the increased use of nanoparticles in biomedical applications there is a growing need to understand the effects that nanoparticles may have on cell function. Identifying these effects and understanding the mechanism through which nanoparticles interfere with the normal functioning of a cell is necessary for any therapeutic or diagnostic application. The aim of this study is to evaluate if gold nanoparticles can affect the normal function of neurons, namely their activity and coding properties. We synthesized star shaped gold nanoparticles of 180 nm average size. We applied the nanoparticles to acute mouse hippocampal slices while recording the action potentials from single neurons in the CA3 region. Our results show that CA3 hippocampal neurons increase their firing rate by 17% after the application of gold nanostars. The increase in excitability lasted for as much as 50 minutes after a transient 5 min application of the nanoparticles. Further analyses of the action potential shape and computational modeling suggest that nanoparticles block potassium channels responsible for the repolarization of the action potentials, thus allowing the cell to increase its firing rate. Our results show that gold nanoparticles can affect the coding properties of neurons by modifying their excitability.

  20. Activity-dependent switch of GABAergic inhibition into glutamatergic excitation in astrocyte-neuron networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perea, Gertrudis; Gómez, Ricardo; Mederos, Sara; Covelo, Ana; Ballesteros, Jesús J; Schlosser, Laura; Hernández-Vivanco, Alicia; Martín-Fernández, Mario; Quintana, Ruth; Rayan, Abdelrahman; Díez, Adolfo; Fuenzalida, Marco; Agarwal, Amit; Bergles, Dwight E; Bettler, Bernhard; Manahan-Vaughan, Denise; Martín, Eduardo D; Kirchhoff, Frank; Araque, Alfonso

    2016-12-24

    Interneurons are critical for proper neural network function and can activate Ca 2+ signaling in astrocytes. However, the impact of the interneuron-astrocyte signaling into neuronal network operation remains unknown. Using the simplest hippocampal Astrocyte-Neuron network, i.e., GABAergic interneuron, pyramidal neuron, single CA3-CA1 glutamatergic synapse, and astrocytes, we found that interneuron-astrocyte signaling dynamically affected excitatory neurotransmission in an activity- and time-dependent manner, and determined the sign (inhibition vs potentiation) of the GABA-mediated effects. While synaptic inhibition was mediated by GABA A receptors, potentiation involved astrocyte GABA B receptors, astrocytic glutamate release, and presynaptic metabotropic glutamate receptors. Using conditional astrocyte-specific GABA B receptor ( Gabbr1 ) knockout mice, we confirmed the glial source of the interneuron-induced potentiation, and demonstrated the involvement of astrocytes in hippocampal theta and gamma oscillations in vivo. Therefore, astrocytes decode interneuron activity and transform inhibitory into excitatory signals, contributing to the emergence of novel network properties resulting from the interneuron-astrocyte interplay.

  1. miR-155 Deletion in Mice Overcomes Neuron-Intrinsic and Neuron-Extrinsic Barriers to Spinal Cord Repair.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaudet, Andrew D; Mandrekar-Colucci, Shweta; Hall, Jodie C E; Sweet, David R; Schmitt, Philipp J; Xu, Xinyang; Guan, Zhen; Mo, Xiaokui; Guerau-de-Arellano, Mireia; Popovich, Phillip G

    2016-08-10

    Axon regeneration after spinal cord injury (SCI) fails due to neuron-intrinsic mechanisms and extracellular barriers including inflammation. microRNA (miR)-155-5p is a small, noncoding RNA that negatively regulates mRNA translation. In macrophages, miR-155-5p is induced by inflammatory stimuli and elicits a response that could be toxic after SCI. miR-155 may also independently alter expression of genes that regulate axon growth in neurons. Here, we hypothesized that miR-155 deletion would simultaneously improve axon growth and reduce neuroinflammation after SCI by acting on both neurons and macrophages. New data show that miR-155 deletion attenuates inflammatory signaling in macrophages, reduces macrophage-mediated neuron toxicity, and increases macrophage-elicited axon growth by ∼40% relative to control conditions. In addition, miR-155 deletion increases spontaneous axon growth from neurons; adult miR-155 KO dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons extend 44% longer neurites than WT neurons. In vivo, miR-155 deletion augments conditioning lesion-induced intraneuronal expression of SPRR1A, a regeneration-associated gene; ∼50% more injured KO DRG neurons expressed SPRR1A versus WT neurons. After dorsal column SCI, miR-155 KO mouse spinal cord has reduced neuroinflammation and increased peripheral conditioning-lesion-enhanced axon regeneration beyond the epicenter. Finally, in a model of spinal contusion injury, miR-155 deletion improves locomotor function at postinjury times corresponding with the arrival and maximal appearance of activated intraspinal macrophages. In miR-155 KO mice, improved locomotor function is associated with smaller contusion lesions and decreased accumulation of inflammatory macrophages. Collectively, these data indicate that miR-155 is a novel therapeutic target capable of simultaneously overcoming neuron-intrinsic and neuron-extrinsic barriers to repair after SCI. Axon regeneration after spinal cord injury (SCI) fails due to neuron

  2. miR-155 Deletion in Mice Overcomes Neuron-Intrinsic and Neuron-Extrinsic Barriers to Spinal Cord Repair

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mandrekar-Colucci, Shweta; Hall, Jodie C.E.; Sweet, David R.; Schmitt, Philipp J.; Xu, Xinyang; Guan, Zhen; Mo, Xiaokui; Guerau-de-Arellano, Mireia

    2016-01-01

    Axon regeneration after spinal cord injury (SCI) fails due to neuron-intrinsic mechanisms and extracellular barriers including inflammation. microRNA (miR)-155–5p is a small, noncoding RNA that negatively regulates mRNA translation. In macrophages, miR-155-5p is induced by inflammatory stimuli and elicits a response that could be toxic after SCI. miR-155 may also independently alter expression of genes that regulate axon growth in neurons. Here, we hypothesized that miR-155 deletion would simultaneously improve axon growth and reduce neuroinflammation after SCI by acting on both neurons and macrophages. New data show that miR-155 deletion attenuates inflammatory signaling in macrophages, reduces macrophage-mediated neuron toxicity, and increases macrophage-elicited axon growth by ∼40% relative to control conditions. In addition, miR-155 deletion increases spontaneous axon growth from neurons; adult miR-155 KO dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons extend 44% longer neurites than WT neurons. In vivo, miR-155 deletion augments conditioning lesion-induced intraneuronal expression of SPRR1A, a regeneration-associated gene; ∼50% more injured KO DRG neurons expressed SPRR1A versus WT neurons. After dorsal column SCI, miR-155 KO mouse spinal cord has reduced neuroinflammation and increased peripheral conditioning-lesion-enhanced axon regeneration beyond the epicenter. Finally, in a model of spinal contusion injury, miR-155 deletion improves locomotor function at postinjury times corresponding with the arrival and maximal appearance of activated intraspinal macrophages. In miR-155 KO mice, improved locomotor function is associated with smaller contusion lesions and decreased accumulation of inflammatory macrophages. Collectively, these data indicate that miR-155 is a novel therapeutic target capable of simultaneously overcoming neuron-intrinsic and neuron-extrinsic barriers to repair after SCI. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Axon regeneration after spinal cord injury (SCI) fails

  3. Effects of DISC1 Polymorphisms on Resting-State Spontaneous Neuronal Activity in the Early-Stage of Schizophrenia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ningzhi Gou

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Background: Localized abnormalities in the synchrony of spontaneous neuronal activity, measured with regional homogeneity (ReHo, has been consistently reported in patients with schizophrenia (SCZ and their unaffected siblings. To date, little is known about the genetic influences affecting the spontaneous neuronal activity in SCZ. DISC1, a strong susceptible gene for SCZ, has been implicated in neuronal excitability and synaptic function possibly associated with regional spontaneous neuronal activity. This study aimed to examine the effects of DISC1 variations on the regional spontaneous neuronal activity in SCZ.Methods: Resting-state fMRI data were obtained from 28 SCZ patients and 21 healthy controls (HC for ReHo analysis. Six single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs of DISC1 gene were genotyped using the PCR and direct sequencing.Results: Significant diagnosis × genotype interactions were noted for three SNPs (rs821616, rs821617, and rs2738880. For rs821617, the interactions were localized to the precuneus, basal ganglia and pre-/post-central regions. Significant interactive effects were identified at the temporal and post-central gyri for rs821616 (Ser704Cys and the inferior temporal gyrus for rs2738880. Furthermore, post-hoc analysis revealed that the DISC1 variations on these SNPs exerted different influences on ReHo between SCZ patients and HC.Conclusion: To our knowledge this is the first study to unpick the influence of DISC1 variations on spontaneous neuronal activity in SCZ; Given the emerging evidence that ReHo is a stable inheritable phenotype for schizophrenia, our findings suggest the DISC1 variations are possibly an inheritable source for the altered ReHo in this disorder.

  4. Neuronal migration, apoptosis and bipolar disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uribe, Ezequiel; Wix, Richard

    2012-01-01

    Bipolar disorder, like the majority of psychiatric disorders, is considered a neurodevelopment disease of neurodevelopment. There is an increased rate of neuronal birth and death during this development period. In the particular case of the processes that determine neuronal death, it is known that those neurons that establish connections have to be removed from the central nervous system. There is a deficit of GABAergic interneurons in the cerebral cortex in bipolar disorder, accompanied by overexpression of proapoptic genes. There is also an alteration in the expression of molecules that mediate in the migration of these neurons and their inclusion in functional synapsis during the foetal stage. The role of these molecules in the neuronal death pathways by apoptosis will be reviewed here in an attempt to establish biological hypotheses of the genesis of bipolar disorder. Copyright © 2011 SEP y SEPB. Published by Elsevier Espana. All rights reserved.

  5. Effect of Electroacupuncture at ST36 on Gastric-Related Neurons in Spinal Dorsal Horn and Nucleus Tractus Solitarius

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaoyu Wang

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to observe the effect of electroacupuncture (EA at the ST36 acupoint on the firing rate of gastric-related neurons in the spinal dorsal horn (SDH and nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS. There were different effects of gastric distention in SDH and NTS in 46 male Sprague-Dawley rats. In 10 excitatory neurons in SDH, most of the neurons were inhibited by homolateral EA. The firing rates decreased significantly (P<0.05 in 10 excitatory gastric-related neurons in NTS; the firing rates of 6 neurons were further excited by homolateral EA, with a significant increase of the firing rates (P<0.05; all inhibitory gastric-related neurons in NTS were excited by EA. The inhibition rate of homolateral EA was significantly increased in comparison with contralateral EA in gastric-related neurons of SDH (P<0.05. There was no significant difference between homolateral and contralateral EA in gastric-related neurons of NTS. EA at ST36 changes the firing rate of gastric-related neurons in SDH and NTS. However, there are some differences in responsive mode in these neurons. The existence of these differences could be one of the physiological foundations of diversity and complexity in EA effects.

  6. Serotonin Neuron Abnormalities in the BTBR Mouse Model of Autism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guo, Yue-Ping; Commons, Kathryn G.

    2017-01-01

    The inbred mouse strain BTBR T+ Itpr3tf/J (BTBR) i studied as a model of idiopathic autism because they are less social and more resistant to change than other strains. Forebrain serotonin receptors and the response to serotonin drugs are altered in BTBR mice, yet it remains unknown if serotonin neurons themselves are abnormal. In this study, we found that serotonin tissue content and the density of serotonin axons is reduced in the hippocampus of BTBR mice in comparison to C57BL/6J (C57) mice. This was accompanied by possible compensatory changes in serotonin neurons that were most pronounced in regions known to provide innervation to the hippocampus: the caudal dorsal raphe (B6) and the median raphe. These changes included increased numbers of serotonin neurons and hyperactivation of Fos expression. Metrics of serotonin neurons in the rostral 2/3 of the dorsal raphe and serotonin content of the prefrontal cortex were less impacted. Thus, serotonin neurons exhibit region-dependent abnormalities in the BTBR mouse that may contribute to their altered behavioral profile. PMID:27478061

  7. TRPA1 expression levels and excitability brake by KV channels influence cold sensitivity of TRPA1-expressing neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Memon, Tosifa; Chase, Kevin; Leavitt, Lee S; Olivera, Baldomero M; Teichert, Russell W

    2017-06-14

    The molecular sensor of innocuous (painless) cold sensation is well-established to be transient receptor potential cation channel, subfamily M, member 8 (TRPM8). However, the role of transient receptor potential cation channel, subfamily A, member 1 (TRPA1) in noxious (painful) cold sensation has been controversial. We find that TRPA1 channels contribute to the noxious cold sensitivity of mouse somatosensory neurons, independent of TRPM8 channels, and that TRPA1-expressing neurons are largely non-overlapping with TRPM8-expressing neurons in mouse dorsal-root ganglia (DRG). However, relatively few TRPA1-expressing neurons (e.g., responsive to allyl isothiocyanate or AITC, a selective TRPA1 agonist) respond overtly to cold temperature in vitro, unlike TRPM8-expressing neurons, which almost all respond to cold. Using somatosensory neurons from TRPM8-/- mice and subtype-selective blockers of TRPM8 and TRPA1 channels, we demonstrate that responses to cold temperatures from TRPA1-expressing neurons are mediated by TRPA1 channels. We also identify two factors that affect the cold-sensitivity of TRPA1-expressing neurons: (1) cold-sensitive AITC-sensitive neurons express relatively more TRPA1 transcripts than cold-insensitive AITC-sensitive neurons and (2) voltage-gated potassium (K V ) channels attenuate the cold-sensitivity of some TRPA1-expressing neurons. The combination of these two factors, combined with the relatively weak agonist-like activity of cold temperature on TRPA1 channels, partially explains why few TRPA1-expressing neurons respond to cold. Blocking K V channels also reveals another subclass of noxious cold-sensitive DRG neurons that do not express TRPM8 or TRPA1 channels. Altogether, the results of this study provide novel insights into the cold-sensitivity of different subclasses of somatosensory neurons. Copyright © 2017 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Learning to see the difference specifically alters the most informative V4 neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raiguel, Steven; Vogels, Rufin; Mysore, Santosh G; Orban, Guy A

    2006-06-14

    Perceptual learning is an instance of adult plasticity whereby training in a sensory (e.g., a visual task) results in neuronal changes leading to an improved ability to perform the task. Yet studies in primary visual cortex have found that changes in neuronal response properties were relatively modest. The present study examines the effects of training in an orientation discrimination task on the response properties of V4 neurons in awake rhesus monkeys. Results indicate that the changes induced in V4 are indeed larger than those in V1. Nonspecific effects of training included a decrease in response variance, and an increase in overall orientation selectivity in V4. The orientation-specific changes involved a local steepening in the orientation tuning curve around the trained orientation that selectively improved orientation discriminability at the trained orientation. Moreover, these changes were largely confined to the population of neurons whose orientation tuning was optimal for signaling small differences in orientation at the trained orientation. Finally, the modifications were restricted to the part of the tuning curve close to the trained orientation. Thus, we conclude that it is the most informative V4 neurons, those most directly involved in the discrimination, that are specifically modified by perceptual learning.

  9. Selective inhibition of miR-92 in hippocampal neurons alters contextual fear memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vetere, Gisella; Barbato, Christian; Pezzola, Silvia; Frisone, Paola; Aceti, Massimiliano; Ciotti, MariaTeresa; Cogoni, Carlo; Ammassari-Teule, Martine; Ruberti, Francesca

    2014-12-01

    Post-transcriptional gene regulation mediated by microRNAs (miRNAs) is implicated in memory formation; however, the function of miR-92 in this regulation is uncharacterized. The present study shows that training mice in contextual fear conditioning produces a transient increase in miR-92 levels in the hippocampus and decreases several miR-92 gene targets, including: (i) the neuronal Cl(-) extruding K(+) Cl(-) co-transporter 2 (KCC2) protein; (ii) the cytoplasmic polyadenylation protein (CPEB3), an RNA-binding protein regulator of protein synthesis in neurons; and (iii) the transcription factor myocyte enhancer factor 2D (MEF2D), one of the MEF2 genes which negatively regulates memory-induced structural plasticity. Selective inhibition of endogenous miR-92 in CA1 hippocampal neurons, by a sponge lentiviral vector expressing multiple sequences imperfectly complementary to mature miR-92 under the control of the neuronal specific synapsin promoter, leads to up-regulation of KCC2, CPEB3 and MEF2D, impairs contextual fear conditioning, and prevents a memory-induced increase in the spine density. Taken together, the results indicate that neuronal-expressed miR-92 is an endogenous fine regulator of contextual fear memory in mice. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  10. A large increase of sour taste receptor cells in Skn-1-deficient mice does not alter the number of their sour taste signal-transmitting gustatory neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maeda, Naohiro; Narukawa, Masataka; Ishimaru, Yoshiro; Yamamoto, Kurumi; Misaka, Takumi; Abe, Keiko

    2017-05-01

    The connections between taste receptor cells (TRCs) and innervating gustatory neurons are formed in a mutually dependent manner during development. To investigate whether a change in the ratio of cell types that compose taste buds influences the number of innervating gustatory neurons, we analyzed the proportion of gustatory neurons that transmit sour taste signals in adult Skn-1a -/- mice in which the number of sour TRCs is greatly increased. We generated polycystic kidney disease 1 like 3-wheat germ agglutinin (pkd1l3-WGA)/Skn-1a +/+ and pkd1l3-WGA/Skn-1a -/- mice by crossing Skn-1a -/- mice and pkd1l3-WGA transgenic mice, in which neural pathways of sour taste signals can be visualized. The number of WGA-positive cells in the circumvallate papillae is 3-fold higher in taste buds of pkd1l3-WGA/Skn-1a -/- mice relative to pkd1l3-WGA/Skn-1a +/+ mice. Intriguingly, the ratio of WGA-positive neurons to P2X 2 -expressing gustatory neurons in nodose/petrosal ganglia was similar between pkd1l3-WGA/Skn-1a +/+ and pkd1l3-WGA/Skn-1a -/- mice. In conclusion, an alteration in the ratio of cell types that compose taste buds does not influence the number of gustatory neurons that transmit sour taste signals. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  11. Ferulic acid promotes survival and differentiation of neural stem cells to prevent gentamicin-induced neuronal hearing loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gu, Lintao; Cui, Xinhua; Wei, Wei; Yang, Jia; Li, Xuezhong

    2017-11-15

    Neural stem cells (NSCs) have exhibited promising potential in therapies against neuronal hearing loss. Ferulic acid (FA) has been widely reported to enhance neurogenic differentiation of different stem cells. We investigated the role of FA in promoting NSC transplant therapy to prevent gentamicin-induced neuronal hearing loss. NSCs were isolated from mouse cochlear tissues to establish in vitro culture, which were then treated with FA. The survival and differentiation of NSCs were evaluated. Subsequently, neurite outgrowth and excitability of the in vitro neuronal network were assessed. Gentamicin was used to induce neuronal hearing loss in mice, in the presence and absence of FA, followed by assessments of auditory brainstem response (ABR) and distortion product optoacoustic emissions (DPOAE) amplitude. FA promoted survival, neurosphere formation and differentiation of NSCs, as well as neurite outgrowth and excitability of in vitro neuronal network. Furthermore, FA restored ABR threshold shifts and DPOAE in gentamicin-induced neuronal hearing loss mouse model in vivo. Our data, for the first time, support potential therapeutic efficacy of FA in promoting survival and differentiation of NSCs to prevent gentamicin-induced neuronal hearing loss. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Mesoscopic segregation of excitation and inhibition in a brain network model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel Malagarriga

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Neurons in the brain are known to operate under a careful balance of excitation and inhibition, which maintains neural microcircuits within the proper operational range. How this balance is played out at the mesoscopic level of neuronal populations is, however, less clear. In order to address this issue, here we use a coupled neural mass model to study computationally the dynamics of a network of cortical macrocolumns operating in a partially synchronized, irregular regime. The topology of the network is heterogeneous, with a few of the nodes acting as connector hubs while the rest are relatively poorly connected. Our results show that in this type of mesoscopic network excitation and inhibition spontaneously segregate, with some columns acting mainly in an excitatory manner while some others have predominantly an inhibitory effect on their neighbors. We characterize the conditions under which this segregation arises, and relate the character of the different columns with their topological role within the network. In particular, we show that the connector hubs are preferentially inhibitory, the more so the larger the node's connectivity. These results suggest a potential mesoscale organization of the excitation-inhibition balance in brain networks.

  13. Structural and Functional Alterations in Neocortical Circuits after Mild Traumatic Brain Injury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vascak, Michal

    National concern over traumatic brain injury (TBI) is growing rapidly. Recent focus is on mild TBI (mTBI), which is the most prevalent injury level in both civilian and military demographics. A preeminent sequelae of mTBI is cognitive network disruption. Advanced neuroimaging of mTBI victims supports this premise, revealing alterations in activation and structure-function of excitatory and inhibitory neuronal systems, which are essential for network processing. However, clinical neuroimaging cannot resolve the cellular and molecular substrates underlying such changes. Therefore, to understand the full scope of mTBI-induced alterations it is necessary to study cortical networks on the microscopic level, where neurons form local networks that are the fundamental computational modules supporting cognition. Recently, in a well-controlled animal model of mTBI, we demonstrated in the excitatory pyramidal neuron system, isolated diffuse axonal injury (DAI), in concert with electrophysiological abnormalities in nearby intact (non-DAI) neurons. These findings were consistent with altered axon initial segment (AIS) intrinsic activity functionally associated with structural plasticity, and/or disturbances in extrinsic systems related to parvalbumin (PV)-expressing interneurons that form GABAergic synapses along the pyramidal neuron perisomatic/AIS domains. The AIS and perisomatic GABAergic synapses are domains critical for regulating neuronal activity and E-I balance. In this dissertation, we focus on the neocortical excitatory pyramidal neuron/inhibitory PV+ interneuron local network following mTBI. Our central hypothesis is that mTBI disrupts neuronal network structure and function causing imbalance of excitatory and inhibitory systems. To address this hypothesis we exploited transgenic and cre/lox mouse models of mTBI, employing approaches that couple state-of-the-art bioimaging with electrophysiology to determine the structuralfunctional alterations of excitatory and

  14. Ectopic Expression of α6 and δ GABAA Receptor Subunits in Hilar Somatostatin Neurons Increases Tonic Inhibition and Alters Network Activity in the Dentate Gyrus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tong, Xiaoping; Peng, Zechun; Zhang, Nianhui; Cetina, Yliana; Huang, Christine S.; Wallner, Martin; Otis, Thomas S.

    2015-01-01

    The role of GABAA receptor (GABAAR)-mediated tonic inhibition in interneurons remains unclear and may vary among subgroups. Somatostatin (SOM) interneurons in the hilus of the dentate gyrus show negligible expression of nonsynaptic GABAAR subunits and very low tonic inhibition. To determine the effects of ectopic expression of tonic GABAAR subtypes in these neurons, Cre-dependent viral vectors were used to express GFP-tagged GABAAR subunits (α6 and δ) selectively in hilar SOM neurons in SOM-Cre mice. In single-transfected animals, immunohistochemistry demonstrated strong expression of either the α6 or δ subunit; in cotransfected animals, both subunits were consistently expressed in the same neurons. Electrophysiology revealed a robust increase of tonic current, with progressively larger increases following transfection of δ, α6, and α6/δ subunits, respectively, indicating formation of functional receptors in all conditions and likely coassembly of the subunits in the same receptor following cotransfection. An in vitro model of repetitive bursting was used to determine the effects of increased tonic inhibition in hilar SOM interneurons on circuit activity in the dentate gyrus. Upon cotransfection, the frequency of GABAAR-mediated bursting in granule cells was reduced, consistent with a reduction in synchronous firing among hilar SOM interneurons. Moreover, in vivo studies of Fos expression demonstrated reduced activation of α6/δ-cotransfected neurons following acute seizure induction by pentylenetetrazole. The findings demonstrate that increasing tonic inhibition in hilar SOM interneurons can alter dentate gyrus circuit activity during strong stimulation and suggest that tonic inhibition of interneurons could play a role in regulating excessive synchrony within the network. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT In contrast to many hippocampal interneurons, somatostatin (SOM) neurons in the hilus of the dentate gyrus have very low levels of nonsynaptic GABAARs and exhibit

  15. Transgenic miR132 alters neuronal spine density and impairs novel object recognition memory.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katelin F Hansen

    2010-11-01

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