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Sample records for glutamatergic excitatory synaptic

  1. Glutamatergic synaptic plasticity in the mesocorticolimbic system in addiction

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    Aile evan Huijstee

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Addictive drugs remodel the brain’s reward circuitry, the mesocorticolimbic dopamine system, by inducing widespread adaptations of glutamatergic synapses. This drug-induced synaptic plasticity is thought to contribute to both the development and the persistence of addiction. This review highlights the synaptic modifications that are induced by in vivo exposure to addictive drugs and describes how these drug-induced synaptic changes may contribute to the different components of addictive behaviour, such as compulsive drug use despite negative consequences and relapse. Initially, exposure to an addictive drug induces synaptic changes in the ventral tegmental area (VTA. This drug-induced synaptic potentiation in the VTA subsequently triggers synaptic changes in downstream areas of the mesocorticolimbic system, such as the nucleus accumbens (NAc and the prefrontal cortex (PFC, with further drug exposure. These glutamatergic synaptic alterations are then thought to mediate many of the behavioural symptoms that characterize addiction. The later stages of glutamatergic synaptic plasticity in the NAc and in particular in the PFC play a role in maintaining addiction and drive relapse to drug-taking induced by drug-associated cues. Remodelling of PFC glutamatergic circuits can persist into adulthood, causing a lasting vulnerability to relapse. We will discuss how these neurobiological changes produced by drugs of abuse may provide novel targets for potential treatment strategies for addiction.

  2. Glutamatergic synaptic plasticity in the mesocorticolimbic system in addiction

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    van Huijstee, Aile N.; Mansvelder, Huibert D.

    2015-01-01

    Addictive drugs remodel the brain’s reward circuitry, the mesocorticolimbic dopamine (DA) system, by inducing widespread adaptations of glutamatergic synapses. This drug-induced synaptic plasticity is thought to contribute to both the development and the persistence of addiction. This review highlights the synaptic modifications that are induced by in vivo exposure to addictive drugs and describes how these drug-induced synaptic changes may contribute to the different components of addictive behavior, such as compulsive drug use despite negative consequences and relapse. Initially, exposure to an addictive drug induces synaptic changes in the ventral tegmental area (VTA). This drug-induced synaptic potentiation in the VTA subsequently triggers synaptic changes in downstream areas of the mesocorticolimbic system, such as the nucleus accumbens (NAc) and the prefrontal cortex (PFC), with further drug exposure. These glutamatergic synaptic alterations are then thought to mediate many of the behavioral symptoms that characterize addiction. The later stages of glutamatergic synaptic plasticity in the NAc and in particular in the PFC play a role in maintaining addiction and drive relapse to drug-taking induced by drug-associated cues. Remodeling of PFC glutamatergic circuits can persist into adulthood, causing a lasting vulnerability to relapse. We will discuss how these neurobiological changes produced by drugs of abuse may provide novel targets for potential treatment strategies for addiction. PMID:25653591

  3. Dynamic inhibition of excitatory synaptic transmission by astrocyte-derived ATP in hippocampal cultures

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    Koizumi, Schuichi; Fujishita, Kayoko; Tsuda, Makoto; Shigemoto-Mogami, Yukari; Inoue, Kazuhide

    2003-09-01

    Originally ascribed passive roles in the CNS, astrocytes are now known to have an active role in the regulation of synaptic transmission. Neuronal activity can evoke Ca2+ transients in astrocytes, and Ca2+ transients in astrocytes can evoke changes in neuronal activity. The excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate has been shown to mediate such bidirectional communication between astrocytes and neurons. We demonstrate here that ATP, a primary mediator of intercellular Ca2+ signaling among astrocytes, also mediates intercellular signaling between astrocytes and neurons in hippocampal cultures. Mechanical stimulation of astrocytes evoked Ca2+ waves mediated by the release of ATP and the activation of P2 receptors. Mechanically evoked Ca2+ waves led to decreased excitatory glutamatergic synaptic transmission in an ATP-dependent manner. Exogenous application of ATP does not affect postsynaptic glutamatergic responses but decreased presynaptic exocytotic events. Finally, we show that astrocytes exhibit spontaneous Ca2+ waves mediated by extracellular ATP and that inhibition of these Ca2+ responses enhanced excitatory glutamatergic transmission. We therefore conclude that ATP released from astrocytes exerts tonic and activity-dependent down-regulation of synaptic transmission via presynaptic mechanisms.

  4. Miniature excitatory synaptic currents in cultured hippocampal neurons.

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    Finch, D M; Fisher, R S; Jackson, M B

    1990-06-04

    We performed patch clamp recordings in the whole cell mode from cultured embryonic mouse hippocampal neurons. In bathing solutions containing tetrodotoxin (TTX), the cells showed spontaneous inward currents (SICs) ranging in size from 1 to 100 pA. Several observations indicated that the SICs were miniature excitatory synaptic currents mediated primarily by non-NMDA (N-methyl-D-aspartate) excitatory amino acid receptors: the rising phase of SICs was fast (1 ms to half amplitude at room temperature) and smooth, suggesting unitary events. The SICs were blocked by the broad-spectrum glutamate receptor antagonist gamma-D-glutamylglycine (DGG), but not by the selective NMDA-receptor antagonist D-2-amino-5-phosphonovaleric acid (5-APV). SICs were also blocked by desensitizing concentrations of quisqualate. Incubating cells in tetanus toxin, which blocks exocytotic transmitter release, eliminated SICs. The presence of SICs was consistent with the morphological arrangement of glutamatergic innervation in the cell cultures demonstrated immunohistochemically. Spontaneous outward currents (SOCs) were blocked by bicuculline and presumed to be mediated by GABAA receptors. This is consistent with immunohistochemical demonstration of GABAergic synapses. SIC frequency was increased in a calcium dependent manner by bathing the cells in a solution high in K+, and application of the dihydropyridine L-type calcium channel agonist BAY K 8644 increased the frequency of SICs. Increases in SIC frequency produced by high K+ solutions were reversed by Cd2+ and omega-conotoxin GVIA, but not by the selective L-type channel antagonist nimodipine. This suggested that presynaptic L-type channels were in a gating mode that was not blocked by nimodipine, and/or that another class of calcium channel makes a dominant contribution to excitatory transmitter release.

  5. Plasticity of Hippocampal Excitatory-Inhibitory Balance: Missing the Synaptic Control in the Epileptic Brain

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    Christian Bonansco

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Synaptic plasticity is the capacity generated by experience to modify the neural function and, thereby, adapt our behaviour. Long-term plasticity of glutamatergic and GABAergic transmission occurs in a concerted manner, finely adjusting the excitatory-inhibitory (E/I balance. Imbalances of E/I function are related to several neurological diseases including epilepsy. Several evidences have demonstrated that astrocytes are able to control the synaptic plasticity, with astrocytes being active partners in synaptic physiology and E/I balance. Here, we revise molecular evidences showing the epileptic stage as an abnormal form of long-term brain plasticity and propose the possible participation of astrocytes to the abnormal increase of glutamatergic and decrease of GABAergic neurotransmission in epileptic networks.

  6. Glutamatergic synaptic plasticity in the mesocorticolimbic system in addiction.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Huijstee, A.N.; Mansvelder, H.D.

    2015-01-01

    Addictive drugs remodel the brain’s reward circuitry, the mesocorticolimbic dopamine (DA) system, by inducing widespread adaptations of glutamatergic synapses. This drug-induced synaptic plasticity is thought to contribute to both the development and the persistence of addiction. This review

  7. Irregular persistent activity induced by synaptic excitatory feedback

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    Francesca Barbieri

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available Neurophysiological experiments on monkeys have reported highly irregular persistent activity during the performance of an oculomotor delayed-response task. These experiments show that during the delay period the coefficient of variation (CV of interspike intervals (ISI of prefrontal neurons is above 1, on average, and larger than during the fixation period. In the present paper, we show that this feature can be reproduced in a network in which persistent activity is induced by excitatory feedback, provided that (i the post-spike reset is close enough to threshold , (ii synaptic efficacies are a non-linear function of the pre-synaptic firing rate. Non-linearity between presynaptic rate and effective synaptic strength is implemented by a standard short-term depression mechanism (STD. First, we consider the simplest possible network with excitatory feedback: a fully connected homogeneous network of excitatory leaky integrate-and-fire neurons, using both numerical simulations and analytical techniques. The results are then confirmed in a network with selective excitatory neurons and inhibition. In both the cases there is a large range of values of the synaptic efficacies for which the statistics of firing of single cells is similar to experimental data.

  8. Anaplastic Lymphoma Kinase Is a Regulator of Alcohol Consumption and Excitatory Synaptic Plasticity in the Nucleus Accumbens Shell

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    Regina A. Mangieri

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK is a receptor tyrosine kinase recently implicated in biochemical, physiological, and behavioral responses to ethanol. Thus, manipulation of ALK signaling may represent a novel approach to treating alcohol use disorder (AUD. Ethanol induces adaptations in glutamatergic synapses onto nucleus accumbens shell (NAcSh medium spiny neurons (MSNs, and putative targets for treating AUD may be validated for further development by assessing how their manipulation modulates accumbal glutamatergic synaptic transmission and plasticity. Here, we report that Alk knockout (AlkKO mice consumed greater doses of ethanol, relative to wild-type (AlkWT mice, in an operant self-administration model. Using ex vivo electrophysiology to examine excitatory synaptic transmission and plasticity at NAcSh MSNs that express dopamine D1 receptors (D1MSNs, we found that the amplitude of spontaneous excitatory post-synaptic currents (EPSCs in NAcSh D1MSNs was elevated in AlkKO mice and in the presence of an ALK inhibitor, TAE684. Furthermore, when ALK was absent or inhibited, glutamatergic synaptic plasticity – long-term depression of evoked EPSCs – in D1MSNs was attenuated. Thus, loss of ALK activity in mice is associated with elevated ethanol consumption and enhanced excitatory transmission in NAcSh D1MSNs. These findings add to the mounting evidence of a relationship between excitatory synaptic transmission onto NAcSh D1MSNs and ethanol consumption, point toward ALK as one important molecular mediator of this interaction, and further validate ALK as a target for therapeutic intervention in the treatment of AUD.

  9. Adenosine A2A Receptors Control Glutamatergic Synaptic Plasticity in Fast Spiking Interneurons of the Prefrontal Cortex

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    Amber Kerkhofs

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Adenosine A2A receptors (A2AR are activated upon increased synaptic activity to assist in the implementation of long-term plastic changes at synapses. While it is reported that A2AR are involved in the control of prefrontal cortex (PFC-dependent behavior such as working memory, reversal learning and effort-based decision making, it is not known whether A2AR control glutamatergic synapse plasticity within the medial PFC (mPFC. To elucidate that, we tested whether A2AR blockade affects long-term plasticity (LTP of excitatory post-synaptic potentials in pyramidal neurons and fast spiking (FS interneurons in layer 5 of the mPFC and of population spikes. Our results show that A2AR are enriched at mPFC synapses, where their blockade reversed the direction of plasticity at excitatory synapses onto layer 5 FS interneurons from LTP to long-term depression, while their blockade had no effect on the induction of LTP at excitatory synapses onto layer 5 pyramidal neurons. At the network level, extracellularly induced LTP of population spikes was reduced by A2AR blockade. The interneuron-specificity of A2AR in controlling glutamatergic synapse LTP may ensure that during periods of high synaptic activity, a proper excitation/inhibition balance is maintained within the mPFC.

  10. Location-dependent excitatory synaptic interactions in pyramidal neuron dendrites.

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    Bardia F Behabadi

    Full Text Available Neocortical pyramidal neurons (PNs receive thousands of excitatory synaptic contacts on their basal dendrites. Some act as classical driver inputs while others are thought to modulate PN responses based on sensory or behavioral context, but the biophysical mechanisms that mediate classical-contextual interactions in these dendrites remain poorly understood. We hypothesized that if two excitatory pathways bias their synaptic projections towards proximal vs. distal ends of the basal branches, the very different local spike thresholds and attenuation factors for inputs near and far from the soma might provide the basis for a classical-contextual functional asymmetry. Supporting this possibility, we found both in compartmental models and electrophysiological recordings in brain slices that the responses of basal dendrites to spatially separated inputs are indeed strongly asymmetric. Distal excitation lowers the local spike threshold for more proximal inputs, while having little effect on peak responses at the soma. In contrast, proximal excitation lowers the threshold, but also substantially increases the gain of distally-driven responses. Our findings support the view that PN basal dendrites possess significant analog computing capabilities, and suggest that the diverse forms of nonlinear response modulation seen in the neocortex, including uni-modal, cross-modal, and attentional effects, could depend in part on pathway-specific biases in the spatial distribution of excitatory synaptic contacts onto PN basal dendritic arbors.

  11. A transgenic mouse line for molecular genetic analysis of excitatory glutamatergic neurons

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    Borgius, Lotta; Restrepo, C. Ernesto; Leao, Richardson N.

    2010-01-01

    Excitatory glutamatergic neurons are part of most of the neuronal circuits in the mammalian nervous system. We have used BAC-technology to generate a BAC-Vglut2::Cre mouse line where Cre expression is driven by the vesicular glutamate transporter 2 (Vglut2) promotor. This BAC-Vglut2::Cre mouse line...... showed specific expression of Cre in Vglut2 positive cells in the spinal cord with no ectopic expression in GABAergic or glycinergic neurons. This mouse line also showed specific Cre expression in Vglut2 positive structures in the brain such as thalamus, hypothalamus, superior colliculi, inferior...... colliculi and deep cerebellar nuclei together with nuclei in the midbrain and hindbrain. Cre-mediated recombination was restricted to Cre expressing cells in the spinal cord and brain and occurred as early as E 12.5. Known Vglut2 positive neurons showed normal electrophysiological properties in the BAC...

  12. Glutamatergic synaptic currents of nigral dopaminergic neurons follow a postnatal developmental sequence

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    Edouard ePearlstein

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available The spontaneous activity pattern of adult dopaminergic (DA neurons of the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc results from interactions between intrinsic membrane conductances and afferent inputs. In adult SNc DA neurons, low-frequency tonic background activity is generated by intrinsic pacemaker mechanisms, whereas burst generation depends on intact synaptic inputs in particular the glutamatergic ones. Tonic DA release in the striatum during pacemaking is required to maintain motor activity, and burst firing evokes phasic DA release, necessary for cue-dependent learning tasks. However, it is still unknown how the firing properties of SNc DA neurons mature during postnatal development before reaching the adult state. We studied the postnatal developmental profile of spontaneous and evoked AMPA and NMDA receptor-mediated excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs in SNc DA neurons in brain slices from immature (postnatal days P4-10 and young adult (P30-50 tyrosine hydroxylase (TH-GFP mice. We found that somato-dendritic fields of SNc DA neurons are already mature at P4-10. In contrast, spontaneous glutamatergic EPSCs show a developmental sequence. Spontaneous NMDA EPSCs in particular are larger and more frequent in immature SNc DA neurons than in young adult ones and have a bursty pattern. They are mediated by GluN2B and GluN2D subunit-containing NMDA receptors. The latter generate long-lasting, DQP1105-sensitive, spontaneous EPSCs, which are transiently recorded during this early period. Due to high NMDA activity, immature SNc DA neurons generate large and long lasting NMDA receptor-dependent (APV-sensitive bursts in response to the stimulation of the subthalamic nucleus. We conclude that the transient high NMDA activity allows calcium influx into the dendrites of developing SNc DA neurons.

  13. Inhibition of excitatory synaptic transmission in the trigeminal motor nucleus by the nitric oxide-cyclic GMP signaling pathway.

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    Pose, Inés; Silveira, Valentina; Morales, Francisco R

    2011-06-01

    Nitric oxide (NO) and cyclic GMP (cGMP) suppressed glutamatergic synaptic transmission to trigeminal motoneurons in brain stem slices of neonatal rats. Histological studies showed guanylate cyclase (GC) containing fibers in the trigeminal motor pool. Glutamatergic excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) were recorded from neonatal trigeminal motoneurons in response to stimulation of the supratrigeminal nucleus (SuV). The NO donors DETA/NONOate (DETA/NO), at a concentration which released 275.1 nM of NO, and Spermine/NONOate (Sper/NO) reduced the amplitude of the EPSC to 52.7±0.6% and 60.1±10.8% of control values, respectively. These actions were not blocked by the GC inhibitors, ODQ or NS-2028. However, in the presence of YC-1 or BAY41-2272, modulators of GC that act as NO sensitizers, lower and otherwise ineffective concentrations of DETA/NO induced a reduction of the EPSC to 60.6±5.2%. Moreover, NO effects were mimicked by 8BrcGMP and by Zaprinast, an inhibitor of Phosphodiesterase 5. Glutamatergic currents evoked by exogenous glutamate were not reduced by DETA/NO nor 8BrcGMP. Paired-pulse facilitation was increased by NO donors. Under "minimal stimulation" conditions NO donors and cGMP increased the failure rate of evoked EPSCs. Protein kinase inhibitors antagonized cGMP effects. The results suggest that NO, through the synthesis of cGMP, presynaptically inhibits glutamatergic synaptic transmission on trigeminal motoneurons. We propose that NO has complex actions on motor pools; specific studies are needed to elucidate their physiological significance in the behaving animal. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Selective synaptic targeting of the excitatory and inhibitory presynaptic organizers FGF22 and FGF7.

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    Terauchi, Akiko; Timmons, Kendall M; Kikuma, Koto; Pechmann, Yvonne; Kneussel, Matthias; Umemori, Hisashi

    2015-01-15

    Specific formation of excitatory and inhibitory synapses is crucial for proper functioning of the brain. Fibroblast growth factor 22 (FGF22) and FGF7 are postsynaptic-cell-derived presynaptic organizers necessary for excitatory and inhibitory presynaptic differentiation, respectively, in the hippocampus. For the establishment of specific synaptic networks, these FGFs must localize to appropriate synaptic locations - FGF22 to excitatory and FGF7 to inhibitory postsynaptic sites. Here, we show that distinct motor and adaptor proteins contribute to intracellular microtubule transport of FGF22 and FGF7. Excitatory synaptic targeting of FGF22 requires the motor proteins KIF3A and KIF17 and the adaptor protein SAP102 (also known as DLG3). By contrast, inhibitory synaptic targeting of FGF7 requires the motor KIF5 and the adaptor gephyrin. Time-lapse imaging shows that FGF22 moves with SAP102, whereas FGF7 moves with gephyrin. These results reveal the basis of selective targeting of the excitatory and inhibitory presynaptic organizers that supports their different synaptogenic functions. Finally, we found that knockdown of SAP102 or PSD95 (also known as DLG4), which impairs the differentiation of excitatory synapses, alters FGF7 localization, suggesting that signals from excitatory synapses might regulate inhibitory synapse formation by controlling the distribution of the inhibitory presynaptic organizer. © 2015. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  15. Excitatory amino acid transporters as potential drug targets

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    Bunch, Lennart; Erichsen, Mette Navy; Jensen, Anders Asbjørn

    2009-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Excitatory amino acid transporters (EAATs) are transmembrane proteins responsible for the uptake of (S)-glutamate (Glu) from the synaptic cleft, thereby terminating the glutamatergic neurotransmitter signal. Today five subtypes have been identified. Except for EAAT2, their individual...

  16. Glucose rapidly induces different forms of excitatory synaptic plasticity in hypothalamic POMC neurons.

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    Jun Hu

    Full Text Available Hypothalamic POMC neurons are required for glucose and energy homeostasis. POMC neurons have a wide synaptic connection with neurons both within and outside the hypothalamus, and their activity is controlled by a balance between excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs. Brain glucose-sensing plays an essential role in the maintenance of normal body weight and metabolism; however, the effect of glucose on synaptic transmission in POMC neurons is largely unknown. Here we identified three types of POMC neurons (EPSC(+, EPSC(-, and EPSC(+/- based on their glucose-regulated spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs, using whole-cell patch-clamp recordings. Lowering extracellular glucose decreased the frequency of sEPSCs in EPSC(+ neurons, but increased it in EPSC(- neurons. Unlike EPSC(+ and EPSC(- neurons, EPSC(+/- neurons displayed a bi-phasic sEPSC response to glucoprivation. In the first phase of glucoprivation, both the frequency and the amplitude of sEPSCs decreased, whereas in the second phase, they increased progressively to the levels above the baseline values. Accordingly, lowering glucose exerted a bi-phasic effect on spontaneous action potentials in EPSC(+/- neurons. Glucoprivation decreased firing rates in the first phase, but increased them in the second phase. These data indicate that glucose induces distinct excitatory synaptic plasticity in different subpopulations of POMC neurons. This synaptic remodeling is likely to regulate the sensitivity of the melanocortin system to neuronal and hormonal signals.

  17. Glucose Rapidly Induces Different Forms of Excitatory Synaptic Plasticity in Hypothalamic POMC Neurons

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    Hu, Jun; Jiang, Lin; Low, Malcolm J.; Rui, Liangyou

    2014-01-01

    Hypothalamic POMC neurons are required for glucose and energy homeostasis. POMC neurons have a wide synaptic connection with neurons both within and outside the hypothalamus, and their activity is controlled by a balance between excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs. Brain glucose-sensing plays an essential role in the maintenance of normal body weight and metabolism; however, the effect of glucose on synaptic transmission in POMC neurons is largely unknown. Here we identified three types of POMC neurons (EPSC(+), EPSC(−), and EPSC(+/−)) based on their glucose-regulated spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs), using whole-cell patch-clamp recordings. Lowering extracellular glucose decreased the frequency of sEPSCs in EPSC(+) neurons, but increased it in EPSC(−) neurons. Unlike EPSC(+) and EPSC(−) neurons, EPSC(+/−) neurons displayed a bi-phasic sEPSC response to glucoprivation. In the first phase of glucoprivation, both the frequency and the amplitude of sEPSCs decreased, whereas in the second phase, they increased progressively to the levels above the baseline values. Accordingly, lowering glucose exerted a bi-phasic effect on spontaneous action potentials in EPSC(+/−) neurons. Glucoprivation decreased firing rates in the first phase, but increased them in the second phase. These data indicate that glucose induces distinct excitatory synaptic plasticity in different subpopulations of POMC neurons. This synaptic remodeling is likely to regulate the sensitivity of the melanocortin system to neuronal and hormonal signals. PMID:25127258

  18. Glucose rapidly induces different forms of excitatory synaptic plasticity in hypothalamic POMC neurons.

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    Hu, Jun; Jiang, Lin; Low, Malcolm J; Rui, Liangyou

    2014-01-01

    Hypothalamic POMC neurons are required for glucose and energy homeostasis. POMC neurons have a wide synaptic connection with neurons both within and outside the hypothalamus, and their activity is controlled by a balance between excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs. Brain glucose-sensing plays an essential role in the maintenance of normal body weight and metabolism; however, the effect of glucose on synaptic transmission in POMC neurons is largely unknown. Here we identified three types of POMC neurons (EPSC(+), EPSC(-), and EPSC(+/-)) based on their glucose-regulated spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs), using whole-cell patch-clamp recordings. Lowering extracellular glucose decreased the frequency of sEPSCs in EPSC(+) neurons, but increased it in EPSC(-) neurons. Unlike EPSC(+) and EPSC(-) neurons, EPSC(+/-) neurons displayed a bi-phasic sEPSC response to glucoprivation. In the first phase of glucoprivation, both the frequency and the amplitude of sEPSCs decreased, whereas in the second phase, they increased progressively to the levels above the baseline values. Accordingly, lowering glucose exerted a bi-phasic effect on spontaneous action potentials in EPSC(+/-) neurons. Glucoprivation decreased firing rates in the first phase, but increased them in the second phase. These data indicate that glucose induces distinct excitatory synaptic plasticity in different subpopulations of POMC neurons. This synaptic remodeling is likely to regulate the sensitivity of the melanocortin system to neuronal and hormonal signals.

  19. Neonatal Nicotine Exposure Increases Excitatory Synaptic Transmission and Attenuates Nicotine-stimulated GABA release in the Adult Rat Hippocampus

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    Damborsky, Joanne C.; Griffith, William H.; Winzer-Serhan, Ursula H.

    2014-01-01

    Developmental exposure to nicotine has been linked to long-lasting changes in synaptic transmission which may contribute to behavioral abnormalities seen in offspring of women who smoke during pregnancy. Here, we examined the long-lasting effects of developmental nicotine exposure on glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission, and on acute nicotine-induced glutamate and GABA release in the adult hippocampus, a structure important in cognitive and emotional behaviors. We utilized a chronic neonatal nicotine treatment model to administer nicotine (6 mg/kg/day) to rat pups from postnatal day (P) 1–7, a period that falls developmentally into the third human trimester. Using whole-cell voltage clamp recordings from CA1 pyramidal neurons in hippocampal slices, we measured excitatory and inhibitory postsynaptic currents in neonatally control- and nicotine-treated young adult males. Neonatal nicotine exposure significantly increased AMPA receptor-mediated spontaneous and evoked excitatory signaling, with no change in glutamate release probability in adults. Conversely, there was no increase in spontaneous GABAergic neurotransmission in nicotine-males. Chronic neonatal nicotine treatment had no effect on acute nicotine-stimulated glutamate release in adults, but acute nicotine-stimulated GABA release was significantly attenuated. Thus, neonatal nicotine exposure results in a persistent net increase in excitation and a concurrent loss of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR)-mediated regulation of presynaptic GABA but not glutamate release, which would exacerbate excitation following endogenous or exogenous nAChR activation. Our data underscore an important role for nAChRs in hippocampal excitatory synapse development, and suggest selective long-term changes at specific presynaptic nAChRs which together could explain some of the behavioral abnormalities associated with maternal smoking. PMID:24950455

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

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    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.

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

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    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.

  2. Unsupervised discrimination of patterns in spiking neural networks with excitatory and inhibitory synaptic plasticity.

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    Srinivasa, Narayan; Cho, Youngkwan

    2014-01-01

    A spiking neural network model is described for learning to discriminate among spatial patterns in an unsupervised manner. The network anatomy consists of source neurons that are activated by external inputs, a reservoir that resembles a generic cortical layer with an excitatory-inhibitory (EI) network and a sink layer of neurons for readout. Synaptic plasticity in the form of STDP is imposed on all the excitatory and inhibitory synapses at all times. While long-term excitatory STDP enables sparse and efficient learning of the salient features in inputs, inhibitory STDP enables this learning to be stable by establishing a balance between excitatory and inhibitory currents at each neuron in the network. The synaptic weights between source and reservoir neurons form a basis set for the input patterns. The neural trajectories generated in the reservoir due to input stimulation and lateral connections between reservoir neurons can be readout by the sink layer neurons. This activity is used for adaptation of synapses between reservoir and sink layer neurons. A new measure called the discriminability index (DI) is introduced to compute if the network can discriminate between old patterns already presented in an initial training session. The DI is also used to compute if the network adapts to new patterns without losing its ability to discriminate among old patterns. The final outcome is that the network is able to correctly discriminate between all patterns-both old and new. This result holds as long as inhibitory synapses employ STDP to continuously enable current balance in the network. The results suggest a possible direction for future investigation into how spiking neural networks could address the stability-plasticity question despite having continuous synaptic plasticity.

  3. Glucose is necessary to maintain neurotransmitter homeostasis during synaptic activity in cultured glutamatergic neurons.

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    Bak, Lasse K; Schousboe, Arne; Sonnewald, Ursula; Waagepetersen, Helle S

    2006-10-01

    Glucose is the primary energy substrate for the adult mammalian brain. However, lactate produced within the brain might be able to serve this purpose in neurons. In the present study, the relative significance of glucose and lactate as substrates to maintain neurotransmitter homeostasis was investigated. Cultured cerebellar (primarily glutamatergic) neurons were superfused in medium containing [U-13C]glucose (2.5 mmol/L) and lactate (1 or 5 mmol/L) or glucose (2.5 mmol/L) and [U-13C]lactate (1 mmol/L), and exposed to pulses of N-methyl-D-aspartate (300 micromol/L), leading to synaptic activity including vesicular release. The incorporation of 13C label into intracellular lactate, alanine, succinate, glutamate, and aspartate was determined by mass spectrometry. The metabolism of [U-13C]lactate under non-depolarizing conditions was high compared with that of [U-13C]glucose; however, it decreased significantly during induced depolarization. In contrast, at both concentrations of extracellular lactate, the metabolism of [U-13C]glucose was increased during neuronal depolarization. The role of glucose and lactate as energy substrates during vesicular release as well as transporter-mediated influx and efflux of glutamate was examined using preloaded D-[3H]aspartate as a glutamate tracer and DL-threo-beta-benzyloxyaspartate to inhibit glutamate transporters. The results suggest that glucose is essential to prevent depolarization-induced reversal of the transporter (efflux), whereas vesicular release was unaffected by the choice of substrate. In conclusion, the present study shows that glucose is a necessary substrate to maintain neurotransmitter homeostasis during synaptic activity and that synaptic activity does not induce an upregulation of lactate metabolism in glutamatergic neurons.

  4. Zinc at glutamatergic synapses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paoletti, P; Vergnano, A M; Barbour, B; Casado, M

    2009-01-12

    It has long been known that the mammalian forebrain contains a subset of glutamatergic neurons that sequester zinc in their synaptic vesicles. This zinc may be released into the synaptic cleft upon neuronal activity. Extracellular zinc has the potential to interact with and modulate many different synaptic targets, including glutamate receptors and transporters. Among these targets, NMDA receptors appear particularly interesting because certain NMDA receptor subtypes (those containing the NR2A subunit) contain allosteric sites exquisitely sensitive to extracellular zinc. The existence of these high-affinity zinc binding sites raises the possibility that zinc may act both in a phasic and tonic mode. Changes in zinc concentration and subcellular zinc distribution have also been described in several pathological conditions linked to glutamatergic transmission dysfunctions. However, despite intense investigation, the functional significance of vesicular zinc remains largely a mystery. In this review, we present the anatomy and the physiology of the glutamatergic zinc-containing synapse. Particular emphasis is put on the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying the putative roles of zinc as a messenger involved in excitatory synaptic transmission and plasticity. We also highlight the many controversial issues and unanswered questions. Finally, we present and compare two widely used zinc chelators, CaEDTA and tricine, and show why tricine should be preferred to CaEDTA when studying fast transient zinc elevations as may occur during synaptic activity.

  5. Purines released from astrocytes inhibit excitatory synaptic transmission in the ventral horn of the spinal cord

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Carlsen, Eva Maria Meier; Perrier, Jean-Francois Marie

    2014-01-01

    by different neuromodulators. These substances are usually thought of being released by dedicated neurons. However, in other networks from the central nervous system synaptic transmission is also modulated by transmitters released from astrocytes. The star-shaped glial cell responds to neurotransmitters....... Neurons responded to electrical stimulation by monosynaptic EPSCs (excitatory monosynaptic postsynaptic currents). We used mice expressing the enhanced green fluorescent protein under the promoter of the glial fibrillary acidic protein to identify astrocytes. Chelating calcium with BAPTA in a single...... neighboring astrocyte increased the amplitude of synaptic currents. In contrast, when we selectively stimulated astrocytes by activating PAR-1 receptors with the peptide TFLLR, the amplitude of EPSCs evoked by a paired stimulation protocol was reduced. The paired-pulse ratio was increased, suggesting...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  7. Role of the origin of glutamatergic synaptic inputs in controlling synaptic plasticity and its modulation by alcohol in mice nucleus accumbens

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gilles Erwann Martin

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available It is widely accepted that long-lasting changes of synaptic strength in the nucleus accumbens, a brain region involved in drug reward, mediate acute and chronic effects of alcohol. However, our understanding of the mechanisms underlying the effects of alcohol on synaptic plasticity is limited by the fact that the nucleus accumbens receives glutamatergic inputs from distinct brain regions (e.g. the prefrontal cortex, the amygdala and the hippocampus, each region providing different information (e.g. spatial, emotional and cognitive. Combining whole-cell patch-clamp recordings and the optogenetic technique, we examined synaptic plasticity, and its regulation by alcohol, at cortical, hippocampal and amygdala inputs in fresh slices of mouse tissue. We showed that the origin of synaptic inputs determines the basic properties of glutamatergic synaptic transmission, the expression of spike-timing dependent long-term depression (tLTD and long-term potentiation (tLTP and their regulation by alcohol. While we observed both tLTP and tLTD at amygadala and hippocampal synapses, we showed that cortical inputs only undergo tLTD. Functionally, we provide evidence that acute EtOH has little effects on higher order information coming from the prefrontal cortex (PFCx, while severely impacting the ability of emotional and contextual information to induce long-lasting changes of synaptic strength.

  8. Daily changes in synaptic innervation of VIP neurons in the rat suprachiasmatic nucleus: contribution of glutamatergic afferents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Girardet, Clémence; Blanchard, Marie-Pierre; Ferracci, Géraldine; Lévêque, Christian; Moreno, Mathias; François-Bellan, Anne-Marie; Becquet, Denis; Bosler, Olivier

    2010-01-01

    The daily temporal organization of rhythmic functions in mammals, which requires synchronization of the circadian clock to the 24-h light-dark cycle, is believed to involve adjustments of the mutual phasing of the cellular oscillators that comprise the time-keeper within the suprachiasmatic nucleus of the hypothalamus (SCN). Following from a previous study showing that the SCN undergoes day/night rearrangements of its neuronal-glial network that may be crucial for intercellular phasing, we investigated the contribution of glutamatergic synapses, known to play major roles in SCN functioning, to such rhythmic plastic events. Neither expression levels of the vesicular glutamate transporters nor numbers of glutamatergic terminals showed nycthemeral variations in the SCN. However, using quantitative imaging after combined immunolabelling, the density of synapses on neurons expressing vasoactive intestinal peptide, known as targets of the retinal input, increased during the day and both glutamatergic and non-glutamatergic synapses contributed to the increase (+36%). This was not the case for synapses made on vasopressin-containing neurons, the other major source of SCN efferents in the non-retinorecipient region. Together with electron microscope observations showing no differences in the morphometric features of glutamatergic terminals during the day and night, these data show that the light synchronization process in the SCN involves a selective remodelling of synapses at sites of photic integration. They provide a further illustration of how the adult brain may rapidly and reversibly adapt its synaptic architecture to functional needs.

  9. Glucose is necessary to maintain neurotransmitter homeostasis during synaptic activity in cultured glutamatergic neurons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bak, Lasse K; Schousboe, Arne; Sonnewald, Ursula

    2006-01-01

    Glucose is the primary energy substrate for the adult mammalian brain. However, lactate produced within the brain might be able to serve this purpose in neurons. In the present study, the relative significance of glucose and lactate as substrates to maintain neurotransmitter homeostasis was inves......Glucose is the primary energy substrate for the adult mammalian brain. However, lactate produced within the brain might be able to serve this purpose in neurons. In the present study, the relative significance of glucose and lactate as substrates to maintain neurotransmitter homeostasis...... was investigated. Cultured cerebellar (primarily glutamatergic) neurons were superfused in medium containing [U-13C]glucose (2.5 mmol/L) and lactate (1 or 5 mmol/L) or glucose (2.5 mmol/L) and [U-13C]lactate (1 mmol/L), and exposed to pulses of N-methyl-D-aspartate (300 micromol/L), leading to synaptic activity...... significantly during induced depolarization. In contrast, at both concentrations of extracellular lactate, the metabolism of [U-13C]glucose was increased during neuronal depolarization. The role of glucose and lactate as energy substrates during vesicular release as well as transporter-mediated influx...

  10. Peptide and lipid modulation of glutamatergic afferent synaptic transmission in the solitary tract nucleus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael C. Andresen

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The brainstem nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS holds the first central neurons in major homeostatic reflex pathways. These homeostatic reflexes regulate and coordinate multiple organ systems from gastrointestinal to cardiopulmonary functions. The core of many of these pathways arise from cranial visceral afferent neurons that enter the brain as the solitary tract (ST with more than two-thirds arising from the gastrointestinal system. About one quarter of ST afferents have myelinated axons but the majority are classed as unmyelinated C-fibers. All ST afferents release the fast neurotransmitter glutamate with remarkably similar, high-probability release characteristics. Second order NTS neurons receive surprisingly limited primary afferent information with one or two individual inputs converging on single second order NTS neurons. A- and C-fiber afferents never mix at NTS second order neurons. Many transmitters modify the basic glutamatergic excitatory postsynaptic current (EPSC often by reducing glutamate release or interrupting terminal depolarization. Thus, a distinguishing feature of ST transmission is presynaptic expression of G-protein coupled receptors for peptides common to peripheral or forebrain (e.g. hypothalamus neuron sources. Presynaptic receptors for angiotensin (AT1, vasopressin (V1a, oxytocin (OT, opioid (MOR, ghrelin (GHSR1 and cholecystokinin (CCK differentially control glutamate release on particular subsets of neurons with most other ST afferents unaffected. Lastly, lipid-like signals are transduced by two key ST presynaptic receptors, the transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 (TRPV1 and the cannabinoid receptor (CB1 that oppositely control glutamate release. Increasing evidence suggests that peripheral nervous signaling mechanisms are repurposed at central terminals to control excitation and are major sites of signal integration of peripheral and central inputs particularly from the hypothalamus.

  11. Galantamine Prevents Long-Lasting Suppression of Excitatory Synaptic Transmission in CA1 Pyramidal Neurons of Soman-Challenged Guinea Pigs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alexandrova, E. A.; Alkondon, M.; Aracava, Y.; Pereira, E. F. R.; Albuquerque, E. X.

    2014-01-01

    Galantamine, a drug currently approved for treatment of Alzheimer's disease, has recently emerged as an effective pretreatment against the acute toxicity and delayed cognitive deficits induced by organophosphorus (OP) nerve agents, including soman. Since cognitive deficits can result from impaired glutamatergic transmission in the hippocampus, the present study was designed to test the hypothesis that hippocampal glutamatergic transmission declines following an acute exposure to soman and that this effect can be prevented by galantamine. To test this hypothesis, spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) were recorded from CA1 pyramidal neurons in hippocampal slices obtained at 1 h, 24 h, or 6-9 days after guinea pigs were injected with: (i) 1xLD50 soman (26.3 μg/kg, s.c.); (ii) galantamine (8 mg/kg, i.m.) followed 30 min later by 1xLD50 soman, (iii) galantamine (8 mg/kg, i.m.), or (iv) saline (0.5 ml/kg, i.m.). In soman-injected guinea pigs that were not pretreated with galantamine, the frequency of EPSCs was significantly lower than that recorded from saline-injected animals. There was no correlation between the severity of soman-induced acute toxicity and the magnitude of soman-induced reduction of EPSC frequency. Pretreatment with galantamine prevented the reduction of EPSC frequency observed at 6-9 days after the soman challenge. Prevention of soman-induced long-lasting reduction of hippocampal glutamatergic synaptic transmission may be an important determinant of the ability of galantamine to counter cognitive deficits that develop long after an acute exposure to the nerve agent. PMID:25064080

  12. Inferring Trial-to-Trial Excitatory and Inhibitory Synaptic Inputs from Membrane Potential using Gaussian Mixture Kalman Filtering

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Milad eLankarany

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Time-varying excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs govern activity of neurons and process information in the brain. The importance of trial-to-trial fluctuations of synaptic inputs has recently been investigated in neuroscience. Such fluctuations are ignored in the most conventional techniques because they are removed when trials are averaged during linear regression techniques. Here, we propose a novel recursive algorithm based on Gaussian mixture Kalman filtering for estimating time-varying excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs from single trials of noisy membrane potential in current clamp recordings. The Kalman filtering is followed by an expectation maximization algorithm to infer the statistical parameters (time-varying mean and variance of the synaptic inputs in a non-parametric manner. As our proposed algorithm is repeated recursively, the inferred parameters of the mixtures are used to initiate the next iteration. Unlike other recent algorithms, our algorithm does not assume an a priori distribution from which the synaptic inputs are generated. Instead, the algorithm recursively estimates such a distribution by fitting a Gaussian mixture model. The performance of the proposed algorithms is compared to a previously proposed PF-based algorithm (Paninski et al., 2012 with several illustrative examples, assuming that the distribution of synaptic input is unknown. If noise is small, the performance of our algorithms is similar to that of the previous one. However, if noise is large, they can significantly outperform the previous proposal. These promising results suggest that our algorithm is a robust and efficient technique for estimating time varying excitatory and inhibitory synaptic conductances from single trials of membrane potential recordings.

  13. Adenosine Inhibits the Excitatory Synaptic Inputs to Basal Forebrain Cholinergic, GABAergic and Parvalbumin Neurons in mice

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    Chun eYang

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Coffee and tea contain the stimulants caffeine and theophylline. These compounds act as antagonists of adenosine receptors. Adenosine promotes sleep and its extracellular concentration rises in association with prolonged wakefulness, particularly in the basal forebrain (BF region involved in activating the cerebral cortex. However, the effect of adenosine on identified BF neurons, especially non-cholinergic neurons, is incompletely understood. Here we used whole-cell patch-clamp recordings in mouse brain slices prepared from two validated transgenic mouse lines with fluorescent proteins expressed in GABAergic or parvalbumin (PV neurons to determine the effect of adenosine. Whole-cell recordings were made BF cholinergic neurons and from BF GABAergic & PV neurons with the size (>20 µm and intrinsic membrane properties (prominent H-currents corresponding to cortically projecting neurons. A brief (2 min bath application of adenosine (100 μM decreased the frequency but not the amplitude of spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents in all groups of BF cholinergic, GABAergic and PV neurons we recorded. In addition, adenosine decreased the frequency of miniature EPSCs in BF cholinergic neurons. Adenosine had no effect on the frequency of spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents in cholinergic neurons or GABAergic neurons with large H-currents but reduced them in a group of GABAergic neurons with smaller H-currents. All effects of adenosine were blocked by a selective, adenosine A1 receptor antagonist, cyclopentyltheophylline (CPT, 1 μM. Adenosine had no postsynaptic effects. Taken together, our work suggests that adenosine promotes sleep by an A1-receptor mediated inhibition of glutamatergic inputs to cortically-projecting cholinergic and GABA/PV neurons. Conversely, caffeine and theophylline promote attentive wakefulness by inhibiting these A1 receptors in BF thereby promoting the high-frequency oscillations in the cortex required for

  14. Effects of Fluoxetine and Visual Experience on Glutamatergic and GABAergic Synaptic Proteins in Adult Rat Visual Cortex123

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beshara, Simon; Beston, Brett R.; Pinto, Joshua G. A.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Fluoxetine has emerged as a novel treatment for persistent amblyopia because in adult animals it reinstates critical period-like ocular dominance plasticity and promotes recovery of visual acuity. Translation of these results from animal models to the clinic, however, has been challenging because of the lack of understanding of how this selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor affects glutamatergic and GABAergic synaptic mechanisms that are essential for experience-dependent plasticity. An appealing hypothesis is that fluoxetine recreates a critical period (CP)-like state by shifting synaptic mechanisms to be more juvenile. To test this we studied the effect of fluoxetine treatment in adult rats, alone or in combination with visual deprivation [monocular deprivation (MD)], on a set of highly conserved presynaptic and postsynaptic proteins (synapsin, synaptophysin, VGLUT1, VGAT, PSD-95, gephyrin, GluN1, GluA2, GluN2B, GluN2A, GABAAα1, GABAAα3). We did not find evidence that fluoxetine shifted the protein amounts or balances to a CP-like state. Instead, it drove the balances in favor of the more mature subunits (GluN2A, GABAAα1). In addition, when fluoxetine was paired with MD it created a neuroprotective-like environment by normalizing the glutamatergic gain found in adult MDs. Together, our results suggest that fluoxetine treatment creates a novel synaptic environment dominated by GluN2A- and GABAAα1-dependent plasticity. PMID:26730408

  15. Spatially structured oscillations in a two-dimensional excitatory neuronal network with synaptic depression

    KAUST Repository

    Kilpatrick, Zachary P.; Bressloff, Paul C.

    2009-01-01

    We study the spatiotemporal dynamics of a two-dimensional excitatory neuronal network with synaptic depression. Coupling between populations of neurons is taken to be nonlocal, while depression is taken to be local and presynaptic. We show that the network supports a wide range of spatially structured oscillations, which are suggestive of phenomena seen in cortical slice experiments and in vivo. The particular form of the oscillations depends on initial conditions and the level of background noise. Given an initial, spatially localized stimulus, activity evolves to a spatially localized oscillating core that periodically emits target waves. Low levels of noise can spontaneously generate several pockets of oscillatory activity that interact via their target patterns. Periodic activity in space can also organize into spiral waves, provided that there is some source of rotational symmetry breaking due to external stimuli or noise. In the high gain limit, no oscillatory behavior exists, but a transient stimulus can lead to a single, outward propagating target wave. © Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2009.

  16. Spatially structured oscillations in a two-dimensional excitatory neuronal network with synaptic depression

    KAUST Repository

    Kilpatrick, Zachary P.

    2009-10-29

    We study the spatiotemporal dynamics of a two-dimensional excitatory neuronal network with synaptic depression. Coupling between populations of neurons is taken to be nonlocal, while depression is taken to be local and presynaptic. We show that the network supports a wide range of spatially structured oscillations, which are suggestive of phenomena seen in cortical slice experiments and in vivo. The particular form of the oscillations depends on initial conditions and the level of background noise. Given an initial, spatially localized stimulus, activity evolves to a spatially localized oscillating core that periodically emits target waves. Low levels of noise can spontaneously generate several pockets of oscillatory activity that interact via their target patterns. Periodic activity in space can also organize into spiral waves, provided that there is some source of rotational symmetry breaking due to external stimuli or noise. In the high gain limit, no oscillatory behavior exists, but a transient stimulus can lead to a single, outward propagating target wave. © Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2009.

  17. Long-lasting alterations in membrane properties, K+ currents and glutamatergic synaptic currents of nucleus accumbens medium spiny neurons in a rat model of alcohol dependence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Igor eSpigelman

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Chronic alcohol exposure causes marked changes in reinforcement mechanisms and motivational state that are thought to contribute to the development of cravings and relapse during protracted withdrawal. The nucleus accumbens (NAcc is a key structure of the mesolimbic dopaminergic reward system. Although the NAcc plays an important role in mediating alcohol-seeking behaviors, little is known about the molecular mechanisms underlying alcohol-induced neuroadaptive changes in NAcc function. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of chronic intermittent ethanol (CIE treatment, a rat model of alcohol withdrawal and dependence, on intrinsic electrical membrane properties and glutamatergic synaptic transmission of medium spiny neurons (MSNs in the NAcc core during protracted withdrawal. We show that CIE treatment followed by prolonged withdrawal increased the inward rectification of MSNs observed at hyperpolarized potentials. In addition, MSNs from CIE-treated animals displayed a lower input resistance, faster action potentials (APs and larger fast afterhyperpolarizations (fAHPs than MSNs from vehicle-treated animals, all suggestive of increases in K+-channel conductances. Significant increases in the Cs+-sensitive inwardly-rectifying K+-current accounted for the increased input resistance, while increases in the A-type K+-current accounted for the faster APs and increased fAHPs in MSNs from CIE rats. We also show that the amplitude and the conductance of α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptor (AMPAR-mediated mEPSCs were enhanced in CIE-treated animals due to an increase in a small fraction of functional postsynaptic GluA2-lacking AMPARs. These long-lasting modifications of excitability and excitatory synaptic receptor function of MSNs in the NAcc core could play a critical role in the neuroadaptive changes underlying alcohol withdrawal and dependence.

  18. TGF-β Signaling in Dopaminergic Neurons Regulates Dendritic Growth, Excitatory-Inhibitory Synaptic Balance, and Reversal Learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah X. Luo

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Neural circuits involving midbrain dopaminergic (DA neurons regulate reward and goal-directed behaviors. Although local GABAergic input is known to modulate DA circuits, the mechanism that controls excitatory/inhibitory synaptic balance in DA neurons remains unclear. Here, we show that DA neurons use autocrine transforming growth factor β (TGF-β signaling to promote the growth of axons and dendrites. Surprisingly, removing TGF-β type II receptor in DA neurons also disrupts the balance in TGF-β1 expression in DA neurons and neighboring GABAergic neurons, which increases inhibitory input, reduces excitatory synaptic input, and alters phasic firing patterns in DA neurons. Mice lacking TGF-β signaling in DA neurons are hyperactive and exhibit inflexibility in relinquishing learned behaviors and re-establishing new stimulus-reward associations. These results support a role for TGF-β in regulating the delicate balance of excitatory/inhibitory synaptic input in local microcircuits involving DA and GABAergic neurons and its potential contributions to neuropsychiatric disorders.

  19. Streptozotocin Inhibits Electrophysiological Determinants of Excitatory and Inhibitory Synaptic Transmission in CA1 Pyramidal Neurons of Rat Hippocampal Slices: Reduction of These Effects by Edaravone

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ting Ju

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Background: Streptozotocin (STZ has served as an agent to generate an Alzheimer's disease (AD model in rats, while edaravone (EDA, a novel free radical scavenger, has recently emerged as an effective treatment for use in vivo and vitro AD models. However, to date, these beneficial effects of EDA have only been clearly demonstrated within STZ-induced animal models of AD and in cell models of AD. A better understanding of the mechanisms of EDA may provide the opportunity for their clinical application in the treatment of AD. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to investigate the underlying mechanisms of STZ and EDA as assessed upon electrophysiological alterations in CA1 pyramidal neurons of rat hippocampal slices. Methods: Through measures of evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (eEPSCs, AMPAR-mediated eEPSCs (eEPSCsAMPA, evoked inhibitory postsynaptic currents (eIPSCs, evoked excitatory postsynaptic current paired pulse ratio (eEPSC PPR and evoked inhibitory postsynaptic current paired pulse ratio (eIPSC PPR, it was possible to investigate mechanisms as related to the neurotoxicity of STZ and reductions in these effects by EDA. Results: Our results showed that STZ (1000 µM significantly inhibited peak amplitudes of eEPSCs, eEPSCsAMPA and eIPSCs, while EDA (1000 µM attenuated these STZ-induced changes at holding potentials ranging from -60mV to +40 mV for EPSCs and -60mV to +20 mV for IPSCs. Our work also indicated that mean eEPSC PPR were substantially altered by STZ, effects which were partially restored by EDA. In contrast, no significant effects upon eIPSC PPR were obtained in response to STZ and EDA. Conclusion: Our data suggest that STZ inhibits glutamatergic transmission involving pre-synaptic mechanisms and AMPAR, and that STZ inhibits GABAergic transmission by post-synaptic mechanisms within CA1 pyramidal neurons. These effects are attenuated by EDA.

  20. Efficient Coding and Energy Efficiency Are Promoted by Balanced Excitatory and Inhibitory Synaptic Currents in Neuronal Network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Lianchun; Shen, Zhou; Wang, Chen; Yu, Yuguo

    2018-01-01

    costs and information maximization is a potential principle for cortical circuit networks. We conducted numerical simulations and mathematical analysis to examine the energy efficiency of neural information transmission in a recurrent network as a function of the ratio of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic connections. We obtained a general solution showing that there exists an optimal E/I synaptic ratio in a recurrent network at which the information transmission as well as the energy efficiency of this network achieves a global maximum. These results reflect general mechanisms for sensory coding processes, which may give insight into the energy efficiency of neural communication and coding.

  1. Selective inhibition of phosphodiesterase 5 enhances glutamatergic synaptic plasticity and memory in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uthayathas, Subramaniam; Parameshwaran, Kodeeswaran; Karuppagounder, Senthilkumar S; Ahuja, Manuj; Dhanasekaran, Muralikrishnan; Suppiramaniam, Vishnu

    2013-11-01

    Phosphodiesterases (PDEs) belong to a family of proteins that control metabolism of cyclic nucleotides. Targeting PDE5, for enhancing cellular function, is one of the therapeutic strategies for male erectile dysfunction. We have investigated whether in vivo inhibition of PDE5, which is expressed in several brain regions, will enhance memory and synaptic transmission in the hippocampus of healthy mice. We have found that acute administration of sildenafil, a specific PDE5 inhibitor, enhanced hippocampus-dependent memory tasks. To elucidate the underlying mechanism in the memory enhancement, effects of sildenafil on long-term potentiation (LTP) were measured. The level of LTP was significantly elevated, with concomitant increases in basal synaptic transmission, in mice treated with sildenafil (1 mg/kg/day) for 15 days compared to control mice. These results suggest that moderate PDE5 inhibition enhances memory by increasing synaptic plasticity and transmission in the hippocampus. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  2. Excitatory Synaptic Drive and Feedforward Inhibition in the Hippocampal CA3 Circuit Are Regulated by SynCAM 1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Kellie A; Ribic, Adema; Laage Gaupp, Fabian M; Coman, Daniel; Huang, Yuegao; Dulla, Chris G; Hyder, Fahmeed; Biederer, Thomas

    2016-07-13

    Select adhesion proteins control the development of synapses and modulate their structural and functional properties. Despite these important roles, the extent to which different synapse-organizing mechanisms act across brain regions to establish connectivity and regulate network properties is incompletely understood. Further, their functional roles in different neuronal populations remain to be defined. Here, we applied diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), a modality of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), to map connectivity changes in knock-out (KO) mice lacking the synaptogenic cell adhesion protein SynCAM 1. This identified reduced fractional anisotropy in the hippocampal CA3 area in absence of SynCAM 1. In agreement, mossy fiber refinement in CA3 was impaired in SynCAM 1 KO mice. Mossy fibers make excitatory inputs onto postsynaptic specializations of CA3 pyramidal neurons termed thorny excrescences and these structures were smaller in the absence of SynCAM 1. However, the most prevalent targets of mossy fibers are GABAergic interneurons and SynCAM 1 loss unexpectedly reduced the number of excitatory terminals onto parvalbumin (PV)-positive interneurons in CA3. SynCAM 1 KO mice additionally exhibited lower postsynaptic GluA1 expression in these PV-positive interneurons. These synaptic imbalances in SynCAM 1 KO mice resulted in CA3 disinhibition, in agreement with reduced feedforward inhibition in this network in the absence of SynCAM 1-dependent excitatory drive onto interneurons. In turn, mice lacking SynCAM 1 were impaired in memory tasks involving CA3. Our results support that SynCAM 1 modulates excitatory mossy fiber inputs onto both interneurons and principal neurons in the hippocampal CA3 area to balance network excitability. This study advances our understanding of synapse-organizing mechanisms on two levels. First, the data support that synaptogenic proteins guide connectivity and can function in distinct brain regions even if they are expressed broadly

  3. Disruption of Fgf13 causes synaptic excitatory-inhibitory imbalance and genetic epilepsy and febrile seizures plus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Puranam, Ram S; He, Xiao Ping; Yao, Lijun; Le, Tri; Jang, Wonjo; Rehder, Catherine W; Lewis, Darrell V; McNamara, James O

    2015-06-10

    We identified a family in which a translocation between chromosomes X and 14 was associated with cognitive impairment and a complex genetic disorder termed "Genetic Epilepsy and Febrile Seizures Plus" (GEFS(+)). We demonstrate that the breakpoint on the X chromosome disrupted a gene that encodes an auxiliary protein of voltage-gated Na(+) channels, fibroblast growth factor 13 (Fgf13). Female mice in which one Fgf13 allele was deleted exhibited hyperthermia-induced seizures and epilepsy. Anatomic studies revealed expression of Fgf13 mRNA in both excitatory and inhibitory neurons of hippocampus. Electrophysiological recordings revealed decreased inhibitory and increased excitatory synaptic inputs in hippocampal neurons of Fgf13 mutants. We speculate that reduced expression of Fgf13 impairs excitability of inhibitory interneurons, resulting in enhanced excitability within local circuits of hippocampus and the clinical phenotype of epilepsy. These findings reveal a novel cause of this syndrome and underscore the powerful role of FGF13 in control of neuronal excitability. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/358866-16$15.00/0.

  4. Emergent spatial patterns of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic strengths drive somatotopic representational discontinuities and their plasticity in a computational model of primary sensory cortical area 3b

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kamil A. Grajski

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Mechanisms underlying the emergence and plasticity of representational discontinuities in the mammalian primary somatosensory cortical representation of the hand are investigated in a computational model. The model consists of an input lattice organized as a three-digit hand forward-connected to a lattice of cortical columns each of which contains a paired excitatory and inhibitory cell. Excitatory and inhibitory synaptic plasticity of feedforward and lateral connection weights is implemented as a simple covariance rule and competitive normalization. Receptive field properties are computed independently for excitatory and inhibitory cells and compared within and across columns. Within digit representational zones intracolumnar excitatory and inhibitory receptive field extents are concentric, single-digit, small, and unimodal. Exclusively in representational boundary-adjacent zones, intracolumnar excitatory and inhibitory receptive field properties diverge: excitatory cell receptive fields are single-digit, small, and unimodal; and the paired inhibitory cell receptive fields are bimodal, double-digit, and large. In simulated syndactyly (webbed fingers, boundary-adjacent intracolumnar receptive field properties reorganize to within-representation type; divergent properties are reacquired following syndactyly release. This study generates testable hypotheses for assessment of cortical laminar-dependent receptive field properties and plasticity within and between cortical representational zones. For computational studies, present results suggest that concurrent excitatory and inhibitory plasticity may underlie novel emergent properties.

  5. Glutamatergic modulation of synaptic-like vesicle recycling in mechanosensory lanceolate nerve terminals of mammalian hair follicles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banks, Robert W; Cahusac, Peter M B; Graca, Anna; Kain, Nakul; Shenton, Fiona; Singh, Paramjeet; Njå, Arild; Simon, Anna; Watson, Sonia; Slater, Clarke R; Bewick, Guy S

    2013-05-15

    Our aim in the present study was to determine whether a glutamatergic modulatory system involving synaptic-like vesicles (SLVs) is present in the lanceolate ending of the mouse and rat hair follicle and, if so, to assess its similarity to that of the rat muscle spindle annulospiral ending we have described previously. Both types of endings are formed by the peripheral sensory terminals of primary mechanosensory dorsal root ganglion cells, so the presence of such a system in the lanceolate ending would provide support for our hypothesis that it is a general property of fundamental importance to the regulation of the responsiveness of the broad class of primary mechanosensory endings. We show not only that an SLV-based system is present in lanceolate endings, but also that there are clear parallels between its operation in the two types of mechanosensory endings. In particular, we demonstrate that, as in the muscle spindle: (i) FM1-43 labels the sensory terminals of the lanceolate ending, rather than the closely associated accessory (glial) cells; (ii) the dye enters and leaves the terminals primarily by SLV recycling; (iii) the dye does not block the electrical response to mechanical stimulation, in contrast to its effect on the hair cell and dorsal root ganglion cells in culture; (iv) SLV recycling is Ca(2+) sensitive; and (v) the sensory terminals are enriched in glutamate. Thus, in the lanceolate sensory ending SLV recycling is itself regulated, at least in part, by glutamate acting through a phospholipase D-coupled metabotropic glutamate receptor.

  6. Spatial distribution of excitatory synapses on the dendrites of ganglion cells in the mouse retina.

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    Yin-Peng Chen

    Full Text Available Excitatory glutamatergic inputs from bipolar cells affect the physiological properties of ganglion cells in the mammalian retina. The spatial distribution of these excitatory synapses on the dendrites of retinal ganglion cells thus may shape their distinct functions. To visualize the spatial pattern of excitatory glutamatergic input into the ganglion cells in the mouse retina, particle-mediated gene transfer of plasmids expressing postsynaptic density 95-green fluorescent fusion protein (PSD95-GFP was used to label the excitatory synapses. Despite wide variation in the size and morphology of the retinal ganglion cells, the expression of PSD95 puncta was found to follow two general rules. Firstly, the PSD95 puncta are regularly spaced, at 1-2 µm intervals, along the dendrites, whereby the presence of an excitatory synapse creates an exclusion zone that rules out the presence of other glutamatergic synaptic inputs. Secondly, the spatial distribution of PSD95 puncta on the dendrites of diverse retinal ganglion cells are similar in that the number of excitatory synapses appears to be less on primary dendrites and to increase to a plateau on higher branch order dendrites. These observations suggest that synaptogenesis is spatially regulated along the dendritic segments and that the number of synaptic contacts is relatively constant beyond the primary dendrites. Interestingly, we also found that the linear puncta density is slightly higher in large cells than in small cells. This may suggest that retinal ganglion cells with a large dendritic field tend to show an increased connectivity of excitatory synapses that makes up for their reduced dendrite density. Mapping the spatial distribution pattern of the excitatory synapses on retinal ganglion cells thus provides explicit structural information that is essential for our understanding of how excitatory glutamatergic inputs shape neuronal responses.

  7. Fast voltage-sensitive dye imaging of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission in the rat granular retrosplenial cortex.

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    Nixima, Ken'ichi; Okanoya, Kazuo; Ichinohe, Noritaka; Kurotani, Tohru

    2017-09-01

    Rodent granular retrosplenial cortex (GRS) has dense connections between the anterior thalamic nuclei (ATN) and hippocampal formation. GRS superficial pyramidal neurons exhibit distinctive late spiking (LS) firing property and form patchy clusters with prominent apical dendritic bundles. The aim of this study was to investigate spatiotemporal dynamics of signal transduction in the GRS induced by ATN afferent stimulation by using fast voltage-sensitive dye imaging in rat brain slices. In coronal slices, layer 1a stimulation, which presumably activated thalamic fibers, evoked propagation of excitatory synaptic signals from layers 2-4 to layers 5-6 in a direction perpendicular to the layer axis, followed by transverse signal propagation within each layer. In the presence of ionotropic glutamate receptor antagonists, inhibitory responses were observed in superficial layers, induced by direct activation of inhibitory interneurons in layer 1. In horizontal slices, excitatory signals in deep layers propagated transversely mainly from posterior to anterior via superficial layers. Cortical inhibitory responses upon layer 1a stimulation in horizontal slices were weaker than those in the coronal slices. Observed differences between coronal and horizontal planes suggest anisotropy of the intracortical circuitry. In conclusion, ATN inputs are processed differently in coronal and horizontal planes of the GRS and then conveyed to other cortical areas. In both planes, GRS superficial layers play an important role in signal propagation, which suggests that superficial neuronal cascade is crucial in the integration of multiple information sources. NEW & NOTEWORTHY Superficial neurons in the rat granular retrosplenial cortex (GRS) show distinctive late-spiking (LS) firing property. However, little is known about spatiotemporal dynamics of signal transduction in the GRS. We demonstrated LS neuron network relaying thalamic inputs to deep layers and anisotropic distribution of

  8. β2-Adrenergic Receptor Activation Suppresses the Rat Phenethylamine Hallucinogen-Induced Head Twitch Response: Hallucinogen-Induced Excitatory Post-synaptic Potentials as a Potential Substrate

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    Marek, Gerard J.; Ramos, Brian P.

    2018-01-01

    5-Hydroxytryptamine2A (5-HT2A) receptors are enriched in layers I and Va of the rat prefrontal cortex and neocortex and their activation increases the frequency of glutamatergic excitatory post-synaptic potentials/currents (EPSP/Cs) onto layer V pyramidal cells. A number of other G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) are also enriched in cortical layers I and Va and either induce (α1-adrenergic and orexin2) or suppress (metabotropic glutamate2 [mGlu2], adenosine A1, μ-opioid) both 5-HT-induced EPSCs and head twitches or head shakes induced by the phenethylamine hallucinogen 2,5-dimethoxy-4-iodoamphetamine (DOI). Another neurotransmitter receptor also localized to apparent thalamocortical afferents to layers I and Va of the rat prefrontal cortex and neocortex is the β2-adrenergic receptor. Therefore, we conducted preliminary electrophysiological experiments with rat brain slices examining the effects of epinephrine on electrically-evoked EPSPs following bath application of DOI (3 μM). Epinephrine (0.3–10 μM) suppressed the late EPSPs produced by electrical stimulation and DOI. The selective β2-adrenergic receptor antagonist ICI-118,551 (300 nM) resulted in a rightward shift of the epinephrine concentration-response relationship. We also tested the selective β2-adrenergic receptor agonist clenbuterol and the antagonist ICI-118,551 on DOI-induced head twitches. Clenbuterol (0.3–3 mg/kg, i.p.) suppressed DOI (1.25 mg/kg, i.p.)-induced head twitches. This clenbuterol effect appeared to be at least partially reversed by the selective β2-adrenergic receptor antagonist ICI-118,553 (0.01–1 mg/kg, i.p.), with significant reversal at doses of 0.1 and 1 mg/kg. Thus, β2-adrenergic receptor activation reverses the effects of phenethylamine hallucinogens in the rat prefrontal cortex. While Gi/Go-coupled GPCRs have previously been shown to suppress both the electrophysiological and behavioral effects of 5-HT2A receptor activation in the mPFC, the present work appears

  9. Carbamazepine and oxcarbazepine, but not eslicarbazepine, enhance excitatory synaptic transmission onto hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells through an antagonist action at adenosine A1 receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Booker, Sam A; Pires, Nuno; Cobb, Stuart; Soares-da-Silva, Patrício; Vida, Imre

    2015-06-01

    This study assessed the anticonvulsant and seizure generation effects of carbamazepine (CBZ), oxcarbazepine (OXC) and eslicarbazepine (S-Lic) in wild-type mice. Electrophysiological recordings were made to discriminate potential cellular and synaptic mechanisms underlying anti- and pro-epileptic actions. The anticonvulsant and pro-convulsant effects were evaluated in the MES, the 6-Hz and the Irwin tests. Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings were used to investigate the effects on fast excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission in hippocampal area CA1. The safety window for CBZ, OXC and eslicarbazepine (ED50 value against the MES test and the dose that produces grade 5 convulsions in all mice), was 6.3, 6.0 and 12.5, respectively. At high concentrations the three drugs reduced synaptic transmission. CBZ and OXC enhanced excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) at low, therapeutically-relevant concentrations. These effects were associated with no change in inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) resulting in altered balance between excitation and inhibition. S-Lic had no effect on EPSC or IPSC amplitudes over the same concentration range. The CBZ mediated enhancement of EPSCs was blocked by DPCPX, a selective antagonist, and occluded by CCPA, a selective agonist of the adenosine A1 receptor. Furthermore, reduction of endogenous adenosine by application of the enzyme adenosine deaminase also abolished the CBZ- and OXC-induced increase of EPSCs, indicating that the two drugs act as antagonists at native adenosine receptors. In conclusion, CBZ and OXC possess pro-epileptic actions at clinically-relevant concentrations through the enhancement of excitatory synaptic transmission. S-Lic by comparison has no such effect on synaptic transmission, explaining its lack of seizure exacerbation. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Male-specific alteration in excitatory post-synaptic development and social interaction in pre-natal valproic acid exposure model of autism spectrum disorder.

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    Kim, Ki Chan; Kim, Pitna; Go, Hyo Sang; Choi, Chang Soon; Park, Jin Hee; Kim, Hee Jin; Jeon, Se Jin; Dela Pena, Ike Campomayor; Han, Seol-Heui; Cheong, Jae Hoon; Ryu, Jong Hoon; Shin, Chan Young

    2013-03-01

    Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a pervasive developmental disorder characterized by three main behavioral symptoms including social deficits, impaired communication, and stereotyped and repetitive behaviors. ASD prevalence shows gender bias to male. Prenatal exposure to valproic acid (VPA), a drug used in epilepsy and bipolar disorder, induces autistic symptoms in both human and rodents. As we reported previously, prenatally VPA-exposed animals at E12 showed impairment in social behavior without any overt reproductive toxicity. Social interactions were not significantly different between male and female rats in control condition. However, VPA-exposed male offspring showed significantly impaired social interaction while female offspring showed only marginal deficits in social interaction. Similar male inclination was observed in hyperactivity behavior induced by VPA. In addition to the ASD-like behavioral phenotype, prenatally VPA-exposed rat offspring shows crooked tail phenotype, which was not different between male and female groups. Both male and female rat showed reduced GABAergic neuronal marker GAD and increased glutamatergic neuronal marker vGluT1 expression. Interestingly, despite of the similar increased expression of vGluT1, post-synaptic marker proteins such as PSD-95 and α-CAMKII expression was significantly elevated only in male offspring. Electron microscopy showed increased number of post-synapse in male but not in female at 4 weeks of age. These results might suggest that the altered glutamatergic neuronal differentiation leads to deranged post-synaptic maturation only in male offspring prenatally exposed to VPA. Consistent with the increased post-synaptic compartment, VPA-exposed male rats showed higher sensitivity to electric shock than VPA-exposed female rats. These results suggest that prenatally VPA-exposed rats show the male preponderance of ASD-like behaviors including defective social interaction similar to human autistic patients, which

  11. Cell-specific gain modulation by synaptically released zinc in cortical circuits of audition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Charles T; Kumar, Manoj; Xiong, Shanshan; Tzounopoulos, Thanos

    2017-09-09

    In many excitatory synapses, mobile zinc is found within glutamatergic vesicles and is coreleased with glutamate. Ex vivo studies established that synaptically released (synaptic) zinc inhibits excitatory neurotransmission at lower frequencies of synaptic activity but enhances steady state synaptic responses during higher frequencies of activity. However, it remains unknown how synaptic zinc affects neuronal processing in vivo. Here, we imaged the sound-evoked neuronal activity of the primary auditory cortex in awake mice. We discovered that synaptic zinc enhanced the gain of sound-evoked responses in CaMKII-expressing principal neurons, but it reduced the gain of parvalbumin- and somatostatin-expressing interneurons. This modulation was sound intensity-dependent and, in part, NMDA receptor-independent. By establishing a previously unknown link between synaptic zinc and gain control of auditory cortical processing, our findings advance understanding about cortical synaptic mechanisms and create a new framework for approaching and interpreting the role of the auditory cortex in sound processing.

  12. Effects of Ketamine on Neuronal Spontaneous Excitatory Postsynaptic Currents and Miniature Excitatory Postsynaptic Currents in the Somatosensory Cortex of Rats

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    Chengdong Yuan

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Background: Ketamine is a commonly used intravenous anesthetic which produces dissociation anesthesia, analgesia, and amnesia. The mechanism of ketamine-induced synaptic inhibition in high-level cortical areas is still unknown. We aimed to elucidate the effects of different concentrations of ketamine on the glutamatergic synaptic transmission of the neurons in the primary somatosensory cortex by using the whole-cell patch-clamp method. Methods: Sprague-Dawley rats (11–19 postnatal days, n=36 were used to obtain brain slices (300 μM. Spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (data from 40 neurons were recorded at a command potential of -70 mV in the presence of bicuculline (a competitive antagonist of GABAA receptors, 30 μM and strychnine (glycine receptor antagonist, 30 μM. Miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (data from 40 neurons were also recorded when 1 μM of tetrodotoxin was added into the artificial cerebrospinal fluid. We used GraphPad Prism5for statistical analysis. Significant differences in the mean amplitude and frequency were tested using the Student paired 2-tailed t test. Values of P<0.05 were considered significant. Results: Different concentrations of ketamine inhibited the frequency and amplitude of the spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents as well as the amplitude of the miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents in a concentration-dependent manner, but they exerted no significant effect on the frequency of the miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents. Conclusion: Ketamine inhibited the excitatory synaptic transmission of the neurons in the primary somatosensory cortex. The inhibition may have been mediated by a reduction in the sensitivity of the postsynaptic glutamatergic receptors.

  13. Glutamatergic postsynaptic block by Pamphobeteus spider venoms in crayfish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Araque, A; Ferreira, W; Lucas, S; Buño, W

    1992-01-31

    The effects of toxins from venom glands of two south american spiders (Pamphobeteus platyomma and P. soracabae) on glutamatergic excitatory synaptic transmission were studied in the neuromuscular junction of the opener muscle of crayfish. The toxins selectively and reversibly blocked both excitatory postsynaptic currents and potentials in a dose-dependent manner. They also reversibly abolished glutamate-induced postsynaptic membrane depolarization. They had no effect on resting postsynaptic membrane conductance nor on postsynaptic voltage-gated currents. The synaptic facilitation and the frequency of miniature postsynaptic potentials were unaffected by the toxins, indicating that presynaptic events were not modified. Picrotoxin, a selective antagonist of the gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)A receptor, did not modify toxin effects. We conclude that both toxins specifically block the postsynaptic glutamate receptor-channel complex.

  14. Excitatory and inhibitory synaptic mechanisms at the first stage of integration in the electroreception system of the shark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rotem, Naama; Sestieri, Emanuel; Hounsgaard, Jørn Dybkjær

    2014-01-01

    High impulse rate in afferent nerves is a common feature in many sensory systems that serve to accommodate a wide dynamic range. However, the first stage of integration should be endowed with specific properties that enable efficient handling of the incoming information. In elasmobranches...... of this afferent pathway. We found that stimulating the afferent nerve activates a mixture of excitatory and inhibitory synapses mediated by AMPA-like and GABAA receptors, respectively. The excitatory synapses that are extremely efficient in activating the postsynaptic neurons display unusual voltage dependence......, enabling them to operate as a current source. The inhibitory input is powerful enough to completely eliminate the excitatory action of the afferent nerve but is ineffective regarding other excitatory inputs. These observations can be explained by the location and efficiency of the synapses. We conclude...

  15. Loss of mTOR repressors Tsc1 or Pten has divergent effects on excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission in single hippocampal neuron cultures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weston, Matthew C; Chen, Hongmei; Swann, John W

    2014-01-01

    The Pten and Tsc1 genes both encode proteins that repress mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR) signaling. Disruption of either gene in the brain results in epilepsy and autism-like symptoms in humans and mouse models, therefore it is important to understand the molecular and physiological events that lead from gene disruption to disease phenotypes. Given the similar roles these two molecules play in the regulation of cellular growth and the overlap in the phenotypes that result from their loss, we predicted that the deletion of either the Pten or Tsc1 gene from autaptic hippocampal neurons would have similar effects on neuronal morphology and synaptic transmission. Accordingly, we found that loss of either Pten or Tsc1 caused comparable increases in soma size, dendrite length and action potential properties. However, the effects of Pten and Tsc1 loss on synaptic transmission were different. Loss of Pten lead to an increase in both excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmission, while loss of Tsc1 did not affect excitatory neurotransmission and reduced inhibitory transmission by decreasing mIPSC amplitude. Although the loss of Pten or Tsc1 both increased downstream mTORC1 signaling, phosphorylation of Akt was increased in Pten-ko and decreased in Tsc1-ko neurons, potentially accounting for the different effects on synaptic transmission. Despite the different effects at the synaptic level, our data suggest that loss of Pten or Tsc1 may both lead to an increase in the ratio of excitation to inhibition at the network level, an effect that has been proposed to underlie both epilepsy and autism.

  16. Developmental cuprizone exposure impairs oligodendrocyte lineages differentially in cortical and white matter tissues and suppresses glutamatergic neurogenesis signals and synaptic plasticity in the hippocampal dentate gyrus of rats

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Abe, Hajime; Saito, Fumiyo; Tanaka, Takeshi; Mizukami, Sayaka; Hasegawa-Baba, Yasuko; Imatanaka, Nobuya; Akahori, Yumi; Yoshida, Toshinori; Shibutani, Makoto

    2016-01-01

    Developmental cuprizone (CPZ) exposure impairs rat hippocampal neurogenesis. Here, we captured the developmental neurotoxicity profile of CPZ using a region-specific expression microarray analysis in the hippocampal dentate gyrus, corpus callosum, cerebral cortex and cerebellar vermis of rat offspring exposed to 0, 0.1, or 0.4% CPZ in the maternal diet from gestation day 6 to postnatal day (PND) 21. Transcripts of those genes identified as altered were subjected to immunohistochemical analysis on PNDs 21 and 77. Our results showed that transcripts for myelinogenesis-related genes, including Cnp, were selectively downregulated in the cerebral cortex by CPZ at ≥ 0.1% or 0.4% on PND 21. CPZ at 0.4% decreased immunostaining intensity for 2′,3′-cyclic-nucleotide 3′-phosphodiesterase (CNPase) and CNPase + and OLIG2 + oligodendrocyte densities in the cerebral cortex, whereas CNPase immunostaining intensity alone was decreased in the corpus callosum. By contrast, a striking transcript upregulation for Klotho gene and an increased density of Klotho + oligodendrocytes were detected in the corpus callosum at ≥ 0.1%. In the dentate gyrus, CPZ at ≥ 0.1% or 0.4% decreased the transcript levels for Gria1, Grin2a and Ptgs2, genes related to the synapse and synaptic transmission, and the number of GRIA1 + and GRIN2A + hilar γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)-ergic interneurons and cyclooxygenase-2 + granule cells. All changes were reversed at PND 77. Thus, developmental CPZ exposure reversibly decreased mature oligodendrocytes in both cortical and white matter tissues, and Klotho protected white matter oligodendrocyte growth. CPZ also reversibly targeted glutamatergic signals of GABAergic interneuron to affect dentate gyrus neurogenesis and synaptic plasticity in granule cells. - Highlights: • We examined developmental cuprizone (CPZ) neurotoxicity in maternally exposed rats. • Multiple brain region-specific global gene expression profiling was performed. • CPZ decreased

  17. Developmental cuprizone exposure impairs oligodendrocyte lineages differentially in cortical and white matter tissues and suppresses glutamatergic neurogenesis signals and synaptic plasticity in the hippocampal dentate gyrus of rats

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Abe, Hajime [Laboratory of Veterinary Pathology, Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, 3-5-8 Saiwai-cho, Fuchu-shi, Tokyo 183-8509 (Japan); Pathogenetic Veterinary Science, United Graduate School of Veterinary Sciences, Gifu University, 1-1 Yanagido, Gifu-shi, Gifu 501-1193 (Japan); Saito, Fumiyo [Chemicals Evaluation and Research Institute, Japan, 1-4-25 Koraku, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 112-0004 (Japan); Tanaka, Takeshi; Mizukami, Sayaka [Laboratory of Veterinary Pathology, Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, 3-5-8 Saiwai-cho, Fuchu-shi, Tokyo 183-8509 (Japan); Pathogenetic Veterinary Science, United Graduate School of Veterinary Sciences, Gifu University, 1-1 Yanagido, Gifu-shi, Gifu 501-1193 (Japan); Hasegawa-Baba, Yasuko [Laboratory of Veterinary Pathology, Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, 3-5-8 Saiwai-cho, Fuchu-shi, Tokyo 183-8509 (Japan); Imatanaka, Nobuya; Akahori, Yumi [Chemicals Evaluation and Research Institute, Japan, 1-4-25 Koraku, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 112-0004 (Japan); Yoshida, Toshinori [Laboratory of Veterinary Pathology, Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, 3-5-8 Saiwai-cho, Fuchu-shi, Tokyo 183-8509 (Japan); Shibutani, Makoto, E-mail: mshibuta@cc.tuat.ac.jp [Laboratory of Veterinary Pathology, Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, 3-5-8 Saiwai-cho, Fuchu-shi, Tokyo 183-8509 (Japan)

    2016-01-01

    Developmental cuprizone (CPZ) exposure impairs rat hippocampal neurogenesis. Here, we captured the developmental neurotoxicity profile of CPZ using a region-specific expression microarray analysis in the hippocampal dentate gyrus, corpus callosum, cerebral cortex and cerebellar vermis of rat offspring exposed to 0, 0.1, or 0.4% CPZ in the maternal diet from gestation day 6 to postnatal day (PND) 21. Transcripts of those genes identified as altered were subjected to immunohistochemical analysis on PNDs 21 and 77. Our results showed that transcripts for myelinogenesis-related genes, including Cnp, were selectively downregulated in the cerebral cortex by CPZ at ≥ 0.1% or 0.4% on PND 21. CPZ at 0.4% decreased immunostaining intensity for 2′,3′-cyclic-nucleotide 3′-phosphodiesterase (CNPase) and CNPase{sup +} and OLIG2{sup +} oligodendrocyte densities in the cerebral cortex, whereas CNPase immunostaining intensity alone was decreased in the corpus callosum. By contrast, a striking transcript upregulation for Klotho gene and an increased density of Klotho{sup +} oligodendrocytes were detected in the corpus callosum at ≥ 0.1%. In the dentate gyrus, CPZ at ≥ 0.1% or 0.4% decreased the transcript levels for Gria1, Grin2a and Ptgs2, genes related to the synapse and synaptic transmission, and the number of GRIA1{sup +} and GRIN2A{sup +} hilar γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)-ergic interneurons and cyclooxygenase-2{sup +} granule cells. All changes were reversed at PND 77. Thus, developmental CPZ exposure reversibly decreased mature oligodendrocytes in both cortical and white matter tissues, and Klotho protected white matter oligodendrocyte growth. CPZ also reversibly targeted glutamatergic signals of GABAergic interneuron to affect dentate gyrus neurogenesis and synaptic plasticity in granule cells. - Highlights: • We examined developmental cuprizone (CPZ) neurotoxicity in maternally exposed rats. • Multiple brain region-specific global gene expression profiling

  18. Neuroglial plasticity at striatal glutamatergic synapses in Parkinson's disease

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    Rosa M Villalba

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Striatal dopamine denervation is the pathological hallmark of Parkinson’s disease (PD. Another major pathological change described in animal models and PD patients is a significant reduction in the density of dendritic spines on medium spiny striatal projection neurons. Simultaneously, the ultrastructural features of the neuronal synaptic elements at the remaining corticostriatal and thalamostriatal glutamatergic axo-spinous synapses undergo complex ultrastructural remodeling consistent with increased synaptic activity (Villalba et al., 2011. The concept of tripartite synapses (TS was introduced a decade ago, according to which astrocytes process and exchange information with neuronal synaptic elements at glutamatergic synapses (Araque et al., 1999a. Although there has been compelling evidence that astrocytes are integral functional elements of tripartite glutamatergic synaptic complexes in the cerebral cortex and hippocampus, their exact functional role, degree of plasticity and preponderance in other CNS regions remain poorly understood. In this review, we discuss our recent findings showing that neuronal elements at cortical and thalamic glutamatergic synapses undergo significant plastic changes in the striatum of MPTP-treated parkinsonian monkeys. We also present new ultrastructural data that demonstrate a significant expansion of the astrocytic coverage of striatal TS synapses in the parkinsonian state, providing further evidence for ultrastructural compensatory changes that affect both neuronal and glial elements at TS. Together with our limited understanding of the mechanisms by which astrocytes respond to changes in neuronal activity and extracellular transmitter homeostasis, the role of both neuronal and glial components of excitatory synapses must be considered, if one hopes to take advantage of glia-neuronal communication knowledge to better understand the pathophysiology of striatal processing in parkinsonism, and develop new PD

  19. Transmission to interneurons is via slow excitatory synaptic potentials mediated by P2Y(1 receptors during descending inhibition in guinea-pig ileum.

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    Peter D J Thornton

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The nature of synaptic transmission at functionally distinct synapses in intestinal reflex pathways has not been fully identified. In this study, we investigated whether transmission between interneurons in the descending inhibitory pathway is mediated by a purine acting at P2Y receptors to produce slow excitatory synaptic potentials (EPSPs. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Myenteric neurons from guinea-pig ileum in vitro were impaled with intracellular microelectrodes. Responses to distension 15 mm oral to the recording site, in a separately perfused stimulation chamber and to electrical stimulation of local nerve trunks were recorded. A subset of neurons, previously identified as nitric oxide synthase immunoreactive descending interneurons, responded to both stimuli with slow EPSPs that were reversibly abolished by a high concentration of PPADS (30 μM, P2 receptor antagonist. When added to the central chamber of a three chambered organ bath, PPADS concentration-dependently depressed transmission through that chamber of descending inhibitory reflexes, measured as inhibitory junction potentials in the circular muscle of the anal chamber. Reflexes evoked by distension in the central chamber were unaffected. A similar depression of transmission was seen when the specific P2Y(1 receptor antagonist MRS 2179 (10 μM was in the central chamber. Blocking either nicotinic receptors (hexamethonium 200 μM or 5-HT(3 receptors (granisetron 1 μM together with P2 receptors had no greater effect than blocking P2 receptors alone. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Slow EPSPs mediated by P2Y(1 receptors, play a primary role in transmission between descending interneurons of the inhibitory reflexes in the guinea-pig ileum. This is the first demonstration for a primary role of excitatory metabotropic receptors in physiological transmission at a functionally identified synapse.

  20. Structure and function of the amygdaloid NPY system: NPY Y2 receptors regulate excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission in the centromedial amygdala.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wood, J; Verma, D; Lach, G; Bonaventure, P; Herzog, H; Sperk, G; Tasan, R O

    2016-09-01

    The amygdala is essential for generating emotional-affective behaviors. It consists of several nuclei with highly selective, elaborate functions. In particular, the central extended amygdala, consisting of the central amygdala (CEA) and the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BNST) is an essential component actively controlling efferent connections to downstream effectors like hypothalamus and brain stem. Both, CEA and BNST contain high amounts of different neuropeptides that significantly contribute to synaptic transmission. Among these, neuropeptide Y (NPY) has emerged as an important anxiolytic and fear-reducing neuromodulator. Here, we characterized the expression, connectivity and electrophysiological function of NPY and Y2 receptors within the CEA. We identified several NPY-expressing neuronal populations, including somatostatin- and calretinin-expressing neurons. Furthermore, in the main intercalated nucleus, NPY is expressed primarily in dopamine D1 receptor-expressing neurons but also in interspersed somatostatin-expressing neurons. Interestingly, NPY neurons did not co-localize with the Y2 receptor. Retrograde tract tracing experiments revealed that NPY neurons reciprocally connect the CEA and BNST. Functionally, the Y2 receptor agonist PYY3-36, reduced both, inhibitory as well as excitatory synaptic transmission in the centromedial amygdala (CEm). However, we also provide evidence that lack of NPY or Y2 receptors results in increased GABA release specifically at inhibitory synapses in the CEm. Taken together, our findings suggest that NPY expressed by distinct populations of neurons can modulate afferent and efferent projections of the CEA via presynaptic Y2 receptors located at inhibitory and excitatory synapses.

  1. Mechanism underlying unaltered cortical inhibitory synaptic transmission in contrast with enhanced excitatory transmission in CaV2.1 knockin migraine mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vecchia, Dania; Tottene, Angelita; van den Maagdenberg, Arn M.J.M.; Pietrobon, Daniela

    2014-01-01

    Familial hemiplegic migraine type 1 (FHM1), a monogenic subtype of migraine with aura, is caused by gain-of-function mutations in CaV2.1 (P/Q-type) calcium channels. In FHM1 knockin mice, excitatory neurotransmission at cortical pyramidal cell synapses is enhanced, but inhibitory neurotransmission at connected pairs of fast-spiking (FS) interneurons and pyramidal cells is unaltered, despite being initiated by CaV2.1 channels. The mechanism underlying the unaltered GABA release at cortical FS interneuron synapses remains unknown. Here, we show that the FHM1 R192Q mutation does not affect inhibitory transmission at autapses of cortical FS and other types of multipolar interneurons in microculture from R192Q knockin mice, and investigate the underlying mechanism. Lowering the extracellular [Ca2+] did not reveal gain-of-function of evoked transmission neither in control nor after prolongation of the action potential (AP) with tetraethylammonium, indicating unaltered AP-evoked presynaptic calcium influx at inhibitory autapses in FHM1 KI mice. Neither saturation of the presynaptic calcium sensor nor short duration of the AP can explain the unaltered inhibitory transmission in the mutant mice. Recordings of the P/Q-type calcium current in multipolar interneurons in microculture revealed that the current density and the gating properties of the CaV2.1 channels expressed in these interneurons are barely affected by the FHM1 mutation, in contrast with the enhanced current density and left-shifted activation gating of mutant CaV2.1 channels in cortical pyramidal cells. Our findings suggest that expression of specific CaV2.1 channels differentially sensitive to modulation by FHM1 mutations in inhibitory and excitatory cortical neurons underlies the gain-of-function of excitatory but unaltered inhibitory synaptic transmission and the likely consequent dysregulation of the cortical excitatory–inhibitory balance in FHM1. PMID:24907493

  2. The Secreted Protein C1QL1 and Its Receptor BAI3 Control the Synaptic Connectivity of Excitatory Inputs Converging on Cerebellar Purkinje Cells

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    Séverine M. Sigoillot

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Precise patterns of connectivity are established by different types of afferents on a given target neuron, leading to well-defined and non-overlapping synaptic territories. What regulates the specific characteristics of each type of synapse, in terms of number, morphology, and subcellular localization, remains to be understood. Here, we show that the signaling pathway formed by the secreted complement C1Q-related protein C1QL1 and its receptor, the adhesion-GPCR brain angiogenesis inhibitor 3 (BAI3, controls the stereotyped pattern of connectivity established by excitatory afferents on cerebellar Purkinje cells. The BAI3 receptor modulates synaptogenesis of both parallel fiber and climbing fiber afferents. The restricted and timely expression of its ligand C1QL1 in inferior olivary neurons ensures the establishment of the proper synaptic territory for climbing fibers. Given the broad expression of C1QL and BAI proteins in the developing mouse brain, our study reveals a general mechanism contributing to the formation of a functional brain.

  3. Optogenetic Stimulation of Prefrontal Glutamatergic Neurons Enhances Recognition Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benn, Abigail; Barker, Gareth R I; Stuart, Sarah A; Roloff, Eva V L; Teschemacher, Anja G; Warburton, E Clea; Robinson, Emma S J

    2016-05-04

    Finding effective cognitive enhancers is a major health challenge; however, modulating glutamatergic neurotransmission has the potential to enhance performance in recognition memory tasks. Previous studies using glutamate receptor antagonists have revealed that the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) plays a central role in associative recognition memory. The present study investigates short-term recognition memory using optogenetics to target glutamatergic neurons within the rodent mPFC specifically. Selective stimulation of glutamatergic neurons during the online maintenance of information enhanced associative recognition memory in normal animals. This cognitive enhancing effect was replicated by local infusions of the AMPAkine CX516, but not CX546, which differ in their effects on EPSPs. This suggests that enhancing the amplitude, but not the duration, of excitatory synaptic currents improves memory performance. Increasing glutamate release through infusions of the mGluR7 presynaptic receptor antagonist MMPIP had no effect on performance. These results provide new mechanistic information that could guide the targeting of future cognitive enhancers. Our work suggests that improved associative-recognition memory can be achieved by enhancing endogenous glutamatergic neuronal activity selectively using an optogenetic approach. We build on these observations to recapitulate this effect using drug treatments that enhance the amplitude of EPSPs; however, drugs that alter the duration of the EPSP or increase glutamate release lack efficacy. This suggests that both neural and temporal specificity are needed to achieve cognitive enhancement. Copyright © 2016 Benn et al.

  4. Electrical coupling and excitatory synaptic transmission between rhythmogenic respiratory neurons in the preBötzinger complex

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rekling, J C; Shao, X M; Feldman, J L

    2000-01-01

    Breathing pattern is postulated to be generated by brainstem neurons. However, determination of the underlying cellular mechanisms, and in particular the synaptic interactions between respiratory neurons, has been difficult. Here we used dual recordings from two distinct populations of brainstem...... respiratory neurons, hypoglossal (XII) motoneurons, and rhythmogenic (type-1) neurons in the preBötzinger complex (preBötC), the hypothesized site for respiratory rhythm generation, to determine whether electrical and chemical transmission is present. Using an in vitro brainstem slice preparation from newborn...... mice, we found that intracellularly recorded pairs of XII motoneurons and pairs of preBötC inspiratory type-1 neurons showed bidirectional electrical coupling. Coupling strength was low (neurons was heavily filtered (corner frequency,

  5. Glutamatergic System and Schizophrenia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Osman Ozdemir

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Glutamate is the major excitatory neurotransmitter in the brain. It has a role several cognitive functions including learning, memory and perception. Glutamatergic neurotransmission is also involved in regulating neuronal migration, synaptogenesis, and the pruning neurons. Glutamatergic exci-totoxicity has been implicated in various neuropsychiatric disorders. Accumulating evidence suggests that glutamatergic dysfunction may contribute to the pathogenesis of schizophrenia. The N-methyl-D-aspartic acid (NMDA receptor antagonists such as phencyclidine and ketamine can cause both the positive and negative symptoms psychotic symptoms in normal humans, and worsen these symptoms in persons with schizophrenia. Hence, it has been hypotesized that schizophrenia may be associated with decreased NMDA-receptor activity. According to the hypothesis, NMDA reseptor hypofunction can lead to decreased inhibition of glutamatergic neurons and excessive glutamate release. Finally, the reduction of gray matter in several brain regions seen in patients with schizophrenia has been suggested to be the result of neurotoxicity mediated by NMDA receptors. [Psikiyatride Guncel Yaklasimlar - Current Approaches in Psychiatry 2016; 8(4.000: 394-405

  6. Naturally occurring compounds affect glutamatergic neurotransmission in rat brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martini, Lucia Helena; Jung, Fernanda; Soares, Felix Antunes; Rotta, Liane Nanci; Vendite, Deusa Aparecida; Frizzo, Marcos Emilio dos Santos; Yunes, Rosendo A; Calixto, João Batista; Wofchuk, Susana; Souza, Diogo O

    2007-11-01

    Natural products, including those derived from plants, have largely contributed to the development of therapeutic drugs. Glutamate is the main excitatory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system and it is also considered a nociceptive neurotransmitter, by acting on peripheral nervous system. For this reason, in this study we investigated the effects of the hydroalcoholic extracts from Drymis winteri (polygodial and drimanial), Phyllanthus (rutin and quercetine), Jathopha elliptica (jatrophone), Hedyosmum brasiliense (13HDS), Ocotea suaveolens (Tormentic acid), Protium kleinii (alphabeta-amyrin), Citrus paradise (naringin), soybean (genistein) and Crataeva nurvala (lupeol), described as having antinociceptive effects, on glutamatergic transmission parameters, such as [(3)H]glutamate binding, [(3)H]glutamate uptake by synaptic vesicles and astrocyte cultures, and synaptosomal [(3)H]glutamate release. All the glutamatergic parameters were affected by one or more of these compounds. Specifically, drimanial and polygodial presented more broad and profound effects, requiring more investigation on their mechanisms. The putative central side effects of these compounds, via the glutamatergic system, are discussed.

  7. Opposing effects of traumatic brain injury on excitatory synaptic function in the lateral amygdala in the absence and presence of preinjury stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, Rebecca C; Acheson, Shawn K; Qadri, Laura H; Dawson, Alina A; Rodriguiz, Ramona M; Wetsel, William C; Moore, Scott D; Laskowitz, Daniel T; Dawson, Hana N

    2016-06-01

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a leading cause of death and disability among young adults and is highly prevalent among recently deployed military personnel. Survivors of TBI often experience cognitive and emotional deficits, suggesting that long-term effects of injury may disrupt neuronal function in critical brain regions, including the amygdala, which is involved in emotion and fear memory. Amygdala hyperexcitability has been reported in both TBI and posttraumatic stress disorder patients, yet little is known regarding the effects of combined stress and TBI on amygdala structure and function at the neuronal level. The present study seeks to determine how the long-term effects of preinjury foot-shock stress and TBI interact to influence synaptic plasticity in the lateral amygdala (LA) of adult male C57BL/6J mice by using whole-cell patch clamp electrophysiology 2-3 months postinjury. In the absence of stress, TBI resulted in a significant increase in membrane excitability and spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs) in LA pyramidal-like neurons. Foot-shock stress in the absence of TBI also resulted in increased sEPSC activity. In contrast, when preinjury stress and TBI occurred in combination, sEPSC activity was significantly decreased compared with either condition alone. There were no significant differences in inhibitory activity or total dendritic length among any of the treatment groups. These results demonstrate that stress and TBI may be contributing to amygdala hyperexcitability via different mechanisms and that these pathways may counterbalance each other with respect to long-term pathophysiology in the LA. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  8. Excitatory amino acid transporters: recent insights into molecular mechanisms, novel modes of modulation and new therapeutic possibilities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Anders A.; Fahlke, Christoph; Bjørn-Yoshimoto, Walden Emil

    2015-01-01

    The five excitatory amino acid transporters (EAAT1–5) mediating the synaptic uptake of the major excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate are differently expressed throughout the CNS and at the synaptic level. Although EAATs are crucial for normal excitatory neurotransmission, explorations into the ......The five excitatory amino acid transporters (EAAT1–5) mediating the synaptic uptake of the major excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate are differently expressed throughout the CNS and at the synaptic level. Although EAATs are crucial for normal excitatory neurotransmission, explorations...

  9. Mechanisms of glycine release, which build up synaptic and extrasynaptic glycine levels: the role of synaptic and non-synaptic glycine transporters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harsing, Laszlo G; Matyus, Peter

    2013-04-01

    Glycine is an amino acid neurotransmitter that is involved in both inhibitory and excitatory neurochemical transmission in the central nervous system. The role of glycine in excitatory neurotransmission is related to its coagonist action at glutamatergic N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors. The glycine levels in the synaptic cleft rise many times higher during synaptic activation assuring that glycine spills over into the extrasynaptic space. Another possible origin of extrasynaptic glycine is the efflux of glycine occurring from astrocytes associated with glutamatergic synapses. The release of glycine from neuronal or glial origins exhibits several differences compared to that of biogenic amines or other amino acid neurotransmitters. These differences appear in an external Ca(2+)- and temperature-dependent manner, conferring unique characteristics on glycine as a neurotransmitter. Glycine transporter type-1 at synapses may exhibit neural and glial forms and plays a role in controlling synaptic glycine levels and the spill over rate of glycine from the synaptic cleft into the extrasynaptic biophase. Non-synaptic glycine transporter type-1 regulates extrasynaptic glycine concentrations, either increasing or decreasing them depending on the reverse or normal mode operation of the carrier molecule. While we can, at best, only estimate synaptic glycine levels at rest and during synaptic activation, glycine concentrations are readily measurable via brain microdialysis technique applied in the extrasynaptic space. The non-synaptic N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor may obtain glycine for activation following its spill over from highly active synapses or from its release mediated by the reverse operation of non-synaptic glycine transporter-1. The sensitivity of non-synaptic N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors to glutamate and glycine is many times higher than that of synaptic N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors making the former type of receptor the primary target for drug action. Synaptic

  10. Homeostatic regulation of excitatory synapses on striatal medium spiny neurons expressing the D2 dopamine receptor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thibault, Dominic; Giguère, Nicolas; Loustalot, Fabien; Bourque, Marie-Josée; Ducrot, Charles; El Mestikawy, Salah; Trudeau, Louis-Éric

    2016-05-01

    Striatal medium spiny neurons (MSNs) are contacted by glutamatergic axon terminals originating from cortex, thalamus and other regions. The striatum is also innervated by dopaminergic (DAergic) terminals, some of which release glutamate as a co-transmitter. Despite evidence for functional DA release at birth in the striatum, the role of DA in the establishment of striatal circuitry is unclear. In light of recent work suggesting activity-dependent homeostatic regulation of glutamatergic terminals on MSNs expressing the D2 DA receptor (D2-MSNs), we used primary co-cultures to test the hypothesis that stimulation of DA and glutamate receptors regulates the homeostasis of glutamatergic synapses on MSNs. Co-culture of D2-MSNs with mesencephalic DA neurons or with cortical neurons produced an increase in spines and functional glutamate synapses expressing VGLUT2 or VGLUT1, respectively. The density of VGLUT2-positive terminals was reduced by the conditional knockout of this gene from DA neurons. In the presence of both mesencephalic and cortical neurons, the density of synapses reached the same total, compatible with the possibility of a homeostatic mechanism capping excitatory synaptic density. Blockade of D2 receptors increased the density of cortical and mesencephalic glutamatergic terminals, without changing MSN spine density or mEPSC frequency. Combined blockade of AMPA and NMDA glutamate receptors increased the density of cortical terminals and decreased that of mesencephalic VGLUT2-positive terminals, with no net change in total excitatory terminal density or in mEPSC frequency. These results suggest that DA and glutamate signaling regulate excitatory inputs to striatal D2-MSNs at both the pre- and postsynaptic level, under the influence of a homeostatic mechanism controlling functional output of the circuit.

  11. Stress-induced impairment of glutamatergic terminals ultrastructure: High vulnerability of medial prefrontal cortex and preventing action of desipramine

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nava, N.; Popoli, M.; Musazzi, L.

    2013-01-01

    mediators, glucocorticoids, on brain volume and dendritic remodeling, in both humans and rodents. Nevertheless, few is still known on the structural changes exerted by behavioral stress on the features of glutamatergic synapses as sites of neuronal communication. Indeed, in excitatory synapses synaptic...... communication is driven by neurotransmitter which is stored, within the presynaptic terminal, in morphologically distinct pools of vesicles, namely the readily-releasable pool of vesicles (RRP), docked to the active zone and ready for release, and the reserve pool of vesicles. When neurotransmitter is released...

  12. Excitatory transmission from the amygdala to nucleus accumbens facilitates reward seeking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stuber, Garret D; Sparta, Dennis R; Stamatakis, Alice M; van Leeuwen, Wieke A; Hardjoprajitno, Juanita E; Cho, Saemi; Tye, Kay M; Kempadoo, Kimberly A; Zhang, Feng; Deisseroth, Karl; Bonci, Antonello

    2011-06-29

    The basolateral amygdala (BLA) has a crucial role in emotional learning irrespective of valence. The BLA projection to the nucleus accumbens (NAc) is thought to modulate cue-triggered motivated behaviours, but our understanding of the interaction between these two brain regions has been limited by the inability to manipulate neural-circuit elements of this pathway selectively during behaviour. To circumvent this limitation, we used in vivo optogenetic stimulation or inhibition of glutamatergic fibres from the BLA to the NAc, coupled with intracranial pharmacology and ex vivo electrophysiology. Here we show that optical stimulation of the pathway from the BLA to the NAc in mice reinforces behavioural responding to earn additional optical stimulation of these synaptic inputs. Optical stimulation of these glutamatergic fibres required intra-NAc dopamine D1-type receptor signalling, but not D2-type receptor signalling. Brief optical inhibition of fibres from the BLA to the NAc reduced cue-evoked intake of sucrose, demonstrating an important role of this specific pathway in controlling naturally occurring reward-related behaviour. Moreover, although optical stimulation of glutamatergic fibres from the medial prefrontal cortex to the NAc also elicited reliable excitatory synaptic responses, optical self-stimulation behaviour was not observed by activation of this pathway. These data indicate that whereas the BLA is important for processing both positive and negative affect, the glutamatergic pathway from the BLA to the NAc, in conjunction with dopamine signalling in the NAc, promotes motivated behavioural responding. Thus, optogenetic manipulation of anatomically distinct synaptic inputs to the NAc reveals functionally distinct properties of these inputs in controlling reward-seeking behaviours.

  13. Impaired glutamatergic projection from the motor cortex to the subthalamic nucleus in 6-hydroxydopamine-lesioned hemi-parkinsonian rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yan-Yan; Wang, Yong; Jiang, Hai-Fei; Liu, Jun-Hua; Jia, Jun; Wang, Ke; Zhao, Fei; Luo, Min-Hua; Luo, Min-Min; Wang, Xiao-Min

    2018-02-01

    The glutamatergic projection from the motor cortex to the subthalamic nucleus (STN) constitutes the cortico-basal ganglia circuit and plays a critical role in the control of movement. Emerging evidence shows that the cortico-STN pathway is susceptible to dopamine depletion. Specifically in Parkinson's disease (PD), abnormal electrophysiological activities were observed in the motor cortex and STN, while the STN serves as a key target of deep brain stimulation for PD therapy. However, direct morphological changes in the cortico-STN connectivity in response to PD progress are poorly understood at present. In the present study, we used a trans-synaptic anterograde tracing method with herpes simplex virus-green fluorescent protein (HSV-GFP) to monitor the cortico-STN connectivity in a rat model of PD. We found that the connectivity from the primary motor cortex (M1) to the STN was impaired in parkinsonian rats as manifested by a marked decrease in trans-synaptic infection of HSV-GFP from M1 neurons to STN neurons in unilateral 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA)-lesioned rats. Ultrastructural analysis with electron microscopy revealed that excitatory synapses in the STN were also impaired in parkinsonian rats. Glutamatergic terminals identified by a specific marker (vesicular glutamate transporter 1) were reduced in the STN, while glutamatergic neurons showed an insignificant change in their total number in both the M1 and STN regions. These results indicate that the M1-STN glutamatergic connectivity is downregulated in parkinsonian rats. This downregulation is mediated probably via a mechanism involving the impairments of excitatory terminals and synapses in the STN. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  14. Dynamic changes in cytosolic ATP levels in cultured glutamatergic neurons during NMDA-induced synaptic activity supported by glucose or lactate

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lange, Sofie Cecilie; Winkler, Ulrike; Andresen, Lars

    2015-01-01

    is supported equally well by both glucose and lactate, and that a pulse of NMDA causes accumulation of Ca(2+) in the mitochondrial matrix. In summary, we have shown that ATP homeostasis during neurotransmission activity in cultured neurons is supported by both glucose and lactate. However, ATP homeostasis...... biosensor Ateam1.03YEMK. While inducing synaptic activity by subjecting cultured neurons to two 30 s pulses of NMDA (30 µM) with a 4 min interval, changes in relative ATP levels were measured in the presence of lactate (1 mM), glucose (2.5 mM) or the combination of the two. ATP levels reversibly declined...... in the presence of glucose following the 2nd pulse of NMDA (approx. 10 vs. 20 %). Further, cytosolic Ca(2+) homeostasis during NMDA-induced synaptic transmission is partially inhibited by verapamil indicating that voltage-gated Ca(2+) channels are activated. Lastly, we showed that cytosolic Ca(2+) homeostasis...

  15. Altered balance of glutamatergic/GABAergic synaptic input and associated changes in dendrite morphology after BDNF expression in BDNF-deficient hippocampal neurons

    OpenAIRE

    Singh, B.; Henneberger, C.; Betances, D.; Arevalo, M.A.; Rodriguez-Tebar, A.; Meier, J.C.; Grantyn, R.

    2006-01-01

    Cultured neurons from bdnf-/- mice display reduced densities of synaptic terminals, although in vivo these deficits are small or absent. Here we aimed at clarifying the local responses to postsynaptic brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). To this end, solitary enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP)-labeled hippocampal neurons from bdnf-/- mice were compared with bdnf-/- neurons after transfection with BDNF, bdnf-/- neurons after transient exposure to exogenous BDNF, and bdnf+/+ neurons...

  16. Dynamic Changes in Cytosolic ATP Levels in Cultured Glutamatergic Neurons During NMDA-Induced Synaptic Activity Supported by Glucose or Lactate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lange, Sofie C; Winkler, Ulrike; Andresen, Lars; Byhrø, Mathilde; Waagepetersen, Helle S; Hirrlinger, Johannes; Bak, Lasse K

    2015-12-01

    We have previously shown that synaptic transmission fails in cultured neurons in the presence of lactate as the sole substrate. Thus, to test the hypothesis that the failure of synaptic transmission is a consequence of insufficient energy supply, ATP levels were monitored employing the ATP biosensor Ateam1.03YEMK. While inducing synaptic activity by subjecting cultured neurons to two 30 s pulses of NMDA (30 µM) with a 4 min interval, changes in relative ATP levels were measured in the presence of lactate (1 mM), glucose (2.5 mM) or the combination of the two. ATP levels reversibly declined following NMDA-induced neurotransmission activity, as indicated by a reversible 10-20 % decrease in the response of the biosensor. The responses were absent when the NMDA receptor antagonist memantine was present. In the presence of lactate alone, the ATP response dropped significantly more than in the presence of glucose following the 2nd pulse of NMDA (approx. 10 vs. 20 %). Further, cytosolic Ca(2+) homeostasis during NMDA-induced synaptic transmission is partially inhibited by verapamil indicating that voltage-gated Ca(2+) channels are activated. Lastly, we showed that cytosolic Ca(2+) homeostasis is supported equally well by both glucose and lactate, and that a pulse of NMDA causes accumulation of Ca(2+) in the mitochondrial matrix. In summary, we have shown that ATP homeostasis during neurotransmission activity in cultured neurons is supported by both glucose and lactate. However, ATP homeostasis seems to be negatively affected by the presence of lactate alone, suggesting that glucose is needed to support neuronal energy metabolism during activation.

  17. Pain-related increase of excitatory transmission and decrease of inhibitory transmission in the central nucleus of the amygdala are mediated by mGluR1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Neugebauer Volker

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Neuroplasticity in the central nucleus of the amygdala (CeA, particularly its latero-capsular division (CeLC, is an important contributor to the emotional-affective aspects of pain. Previous studies showed synaptic plasticity of excitatory transmission to the CeLC in different pain models, but pain-related changes of inhibitory transmission remain to be determined. The CeLC receives convergent excitatory inputs from the parabrachial nucleus in the brainstem and from the basolateral amygdala (BLA. In addition, feedforward inhibition of CeA neurons is driven by glutamatergic projections from the BLA area to a cluster of GABAergic neurons in the intercalated cell masses (ITC. Using patch-clamp in rat brain slices we measured monosynaptic excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs and polysynaptic inhibitory currents (IPSCs that were evoked by electrical stimulation in the BLA. In brain slices from arthritic rats, input-output functions of excitatory synaptic transmission were enhanced whereas inhibitory synaptic transmission was decreased compared to control slices from normal untreated rats. A non-NMDA receptor antagonist (NBQX blocked the EPSCs and reduced the IPSCs, suggesting that non-NMDA receptors mediate excitatory transmission and also contribute to glutamate-driven feed-forward inhibition of CeLC neurons. IPSCs were blocked by a GABAA receptor antagonist (bicuculline. Bicuculline increased EPSCs under normal conditions but not in slices from arthritic rats, which indicates a loss of GABAergic control of excitatory transmission. A metabotropic glutamate receptor subtype 1 (mGluR1 antagonist (LY367385 reversed both the increase of excitatory transmission and the decrease of inhibitory transmission in the arthritis pain model but had no effect on basal synaptic transmission in control slices from normal rats. The inhibitory effect of LY367385 on excitatory transmission was blocked by bicuculline suggesting the involvement of a GABAergic

  18. Electrophysical properties, synaptic transmission and neuromodulation in serotonergic caudal raphe neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Y W; Bayliss, D A

    1998-06-01

    1. We studied electrophysiological properties, synaptic transmission and modulation by 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) of caudal raphe neurons using whole-cell recording in a neonatal rat brain slice preparation; recorded neurons were identified as serotonergic by post-hoc immunohistochemical detection of tryptophan hydroxylase, the 5-HT-synthesizing enzyme. 2. Serotonergic neurons fired spontaneously (approximately 1 Hz), with maximal steady state firing rates of < 4 Hz. 5-Hydroxytryptamine caused hyperpolarization and cessation of spike activity in these neurons by activating inwardly rectifying K+ conductance via somatodendritic 5-HT1A receptors. 3. Unitary glutamatergic excitatory post-synaptic potentials (EPSP) and currents (EPSC) were evoked in serotonergic neurons by local electrical stimulation. Evoked EPSC were potently inhibited by 5-HT, an effect mediated by presynaptic 5-HT1B receptors. 4. In conclusion, serotonergic caudal raphe neurons are spontaneously active in vitro; they receive prominent glutamatergic synaptic inputs. 5-Hydroxytryptamine regulates serotonergic neuronal activity of the caudal raphe by decreasing spontaneous activity via somatodendritic 5-HT1A receptors and by inhibiting excitatory synaptic transmission onto these neurons via presynaptic 5-HT1B receptors. These local modulatory mechanisms provide multiple levels of feedback autoregulation of serotonergic raphe neurons by 5-HT.

  19. Decreased expression of vesicular glutamate transporter 1 and complexin II mRNAs in schizophrenia: further evidence for a synaptic pathology affecting glutamate neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eastwood, S L; Harrison, P J

    2005-03-01

    Synaptic protein gene expression is altered in schizophrenia. In the hippocampal formation there may be particular involvement of glutamatergic neurons and their synapses, but overall the profile remains unclear. In this in situ hybridization histochemistry (ISHH) study, we examined four informative synaptic protein transcripts: vesicular glutamate transporter (VGLUT) 1, VGLUT2, complexin I, and complexin II, in dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DPFC), superior temporal cortex (STC), and hippocampal formation, in 13 subjects with schizophrenia and 18 controls. In these areas, VGLUT1 and complexin II are expressed primarily by excitatory neurons, whereas complexin I is mainly expressed by inhibitory neurons. In schizophrenia, VGLUT1 mRNA was decreased in hippocampal formation and DPFC, complexin II mRNA was reduced in DPFC and STC, and complexin I mRNA decreased in STC. Hippocampal VGLUT1 mRNA declined with age selectively in the schizophrenia group. VGLUT2 mRNA was not quantifiable due to its low level. The data provide additional evidence for a synaptic pathology in schizophrenia, in terms of a reduced expression of three synaptic protein genes. In the hippocampus, the loss of VGLUT1 mRNA supports data indicating that glutamatergic presynaptic deficits are prominent, whereas the pattern of results in temporal and frontal cortex suggests broadly similar changes may affect inhibitory and excitatory neurons. The impairment of synaptic transmission implied by the synaptic protein reductions may contribute to the dysfunction of cortical neural circuits that characterises the disorder.

  20. Plasticity of cortical excitatory-inhibitory balance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Froemke, Robert C

    2015-07-08

    Synapses are highly plastic and are modified by changes in patterns of neural activity or sensory experience. Plasticity of cortical excitatory synapses is thought to be important for learning and memory, leading to alterations in sensory representations and cognitive maps. However, these changes must be coordinated across other synapses within local circuits to preserve neural coding schemes and the organization of excitatory and inhibitory inputs, i.e., excitatory-inhibitory balance. Recent studies indicate that inhibitory synapses are also plastic and are controlled directly by a large number of neuromodulators, particularly during episodes of learning. Many modulators transiently alter excitatory-inhibitory balance by decreasing inhibition, and thus disinhibition has emerged as a major mechanism by which neuromodulation might enable long-term synaptic modifications naturally. This review examines the relationships between neuromodulation and synaptic plasticity, focusing on the induction of long-term changes that collectively enhance cortical excitatory-inhibitory balance for improving perception and behavior.

  1. Methamphetamine reduces LTP and increases baseline synaptic transmission in the CA1 region of mouse hippocampus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jarod Swant

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Methamphetamine (METH is an addictive psychostimulant whose societal impact is on the rise. Emerging evidence suggests that psychostimulants alter synaptic plasticity in the brain--which may partly account for their adverse effects. While it is known that METH increases the extracellular concentration of monoamines dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine, it is not clear how METH alters glutamatergic transmission. Within this context, the aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of acute and systemic METH on basal synaptic transmission and long-term potentiation (LTP; an activity-induced increase in synaptic efficacy in CA1 sub-field in the hippocampus. Both the acute ex vivo application of METH to hippocampal slices and systemic administration of METH decreased LTP. Interestingly, the acute ex vivo application of METH at a concentration of 30 or 60 microM increased baseline synaptic transmission as well as decreased LTP. Pretreatment with eticlopride (D2-like receptor antagonist did not alter the effects of METH on synaptic transmission or LTP. In contrast, pretreatment with D1/D5 dopamine receptor antagonist SCH23390 or 5-HT1A receptor antagonist NAN-190 abrogated the effect of METH on synaptic transmission. Furthermore, METH did not increase baseline synaptic transmission in D1 dopamine receptor haploinsufficient mice. Our findings suggest that METH affects excitatory synaptic transmission via activation of dopamine and serotonin receptor systems in the hippocampus. This modulation may contribute to synaptic maladaption induced by METH addiction and/or METH-mediated cognitive dysfunction.

  2. Noise Trauma-Induced Behavioral Gap Detection Deficits Correlate with Reorganization of Excitatory and Inhibitory Local Circuits in the Inferior Colliculus and Are Prevented by Acoustic Enrichment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sturm, Joshua J; Zhang-Hooks, Ying-Xin; Roos, Hannah; Nguyen, Tuan; Kandler, Karl

    2017-06-28

    Hearing loss leads to a host of cellular and synaptic changes in auditory brain areas that are thought to give rise to auditory perception deficits such as temporal processing impairments, hyperacusis, and tinnitus. However, little is known about possible changes in synaptic circuit connectivity that may underlie these hearing deficits. Here, we show that mild hearing loss as a result of brief noise exposure leads to a pronounced reorganization of local excitatory and inhibitory circuits in the mouse inferior colliculus. The exact nature of these reorganizations correlated with the presence or absence of the animals' impairments in detecting brief sound gaps, a commonly used behavioral sign for tinnitus in animal models. Mice with gap detection deficits (GDDs) showed a shift in the balance of synaptic excitation and inhibition that was present in both glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons, whereas mice without GDDs showed stable excitation-inhibition balances. Acoustic enrichment (AE) with moderate intensity, pulsed white noise immediately after noise trauma prevented both circuit reorganization and GDDs, raising the possibility of using AE immediately after cochlear damage to prevent or alleviate the emergence of central auditory processing deficits. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Noise overexposure is a major cause of central auditory processing disorders, including tinnitus, yet the changes in synaptic connectivity underlying these disorders remain poorly understood. Here, we find that brief noise overexposure leads to distinct reorganizations of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs onto glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons and that the nature of these reorganizations correlates with animals' impairments in detecting brief sound gaps, which is often considered a sign of tinnitus. Acoustic enrichment immediately after noise trauma prevents circuit reorganizations and gap detection deficits, highlighting the potential for using sound therapy soon after cochlear damage

  3. Can a Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor Act as a Glutamatergic Modulator?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcos Emilio Frizzo, PhD

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Sertraline (Zoloft and fluoxetine (Prozac are selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors whose antidepressant mechanism of action is classically attributed to an elevation of the extracellular levels of serotonin in the synaptic cleft. However, the biological effects of these drugs seem to be more complex than their traditionally described mechanism of action. Among their actions is the inhibition of different types of Na+ and K+ channels, as well as of glutamate uptake activity. The clearance of extracellular glutamate is essential to maintain the central nervous system within physiological conditions, and this excitatory neurotransmitter is removed from the synaptic cleft by astrocyte transporters. This transport depends upon a hyperpolarized membrane potential in astrocytes that is mainly maintained by Kir4.1 K+ channels. The impairment of the Kir4.1 channel activity reduces driving force for the glutamate transporter, resulting in an accumulation of extracellular glutamate. It has been shown that sertraline and fluoxetine inhibit Kir4.1 K+ channels. Recently, we demonstrated that sertraline reduces glutamate uptake in human platelets, which contain a high-affinity Na+-dependent glutamate uptake system, with kinetic and pharmacological properties similar to astrocytes in the central nervous system. Considering these similarities between human platelets and astrocytes, one might ask if sertraline could potentially reduce glutamate clearance in the synaptic cleft and consequently modulate glutamatergic transmission. This possibility merits investigation, since it may provide additional information regarding the mechanism of action and perhaps the side effects of these antidepressants.

  4. Correlating Fluorescence and High-Resolution Scanning Electron Microscopy (HRSEM) for the study of GABAA receptor clustering induced by inhibitory synaptic plasticity

    KAUST Repository

    Orlando, Marta; Ravasenga, Tiziana; Petrini, Enrica Maria; Falqui, Andrea; Marotta, Roberto; Barberis, Andrea

    2017-01-01

    Both excitatory and inhibitory synaptic contacts display activity dependent dynamic changes in their efficacy that are globally termed synaptic plasticity. Although the molecular mechanisms underlying glutamatergic synaptic plasticity have been extensively investigated and described, those responsible for inhibitory synaptic plasticity are only beginning to be unveiled. In this framework, the ultrastructural changes of the inhibitory synapses during plasticity have been poorly investigated. Here we combined confocal fluorescence microscopy (CFM) with high resolution scanning electron microscopy (HRSEM) to characterize the fine structural rearrangements of post-synaptic GABAA Receptors (GABAARs) at the nanometric scale during the induction of inhibitory long-term potentiation (iLTP). Additional electron tomography (ET) experiments on immunolabelled hippocampal neurons allowed the visualization of synaptic contacts and confirmed the reorganization of post-synaptic GABAAR clusters in response to chemical iLTP inducing protocol. Altogether, these approaches revealed that, following the induction of inhibitory synaptic potentiation, GABAAR clusters increase in size and number at the post-synaptic membrane with no other major structural changes of the pre- and post-synaptic elements.

  5. Correlating Fluorescence and High-Resolution Scanning Electron Microscopy (HRSEM) for the study of GABAA receptor clustering induced by inhibitory synaptic plasticity

    KAUST Repository

    Orlando, Marta

    2017-10-17

    Both excitatory and inhibitory synaptic contacts display activity dependent dynamic changes in their efficacy that are globally termed synaptic plasticity. Although the molecular mechanisms underlying glutamatergic synaptic plasticity have been extensively investigated and described, those responsible for inhibitory synaptic plasticity are only beginning to be unveiled. In this framework, the ultrastructural changes of the inhibitory synapses during plasticity have been poorly investigated. Here we combined confocal fluorescence microscopy (CFM) with high resolution scanning electron microscopy (HRSEM) to characterize the fine structural rearrangements of post-synaptic GABAA Receptors (GABAARs) at the nanometric scale during the induction of inhibitory long-term potentiation (iLTP). Additional electron tomography (ET) experiments on immunolabelled hippocampal neurons allowed the visualization of synaptic contacts and confirmed the reorganization of post-synaptic GABAAR clusters in response to chemical iLTP inducing protocol. Altogether, these approaches revealed that, following the induction of inhibitory synaptic potentiation, GABAAR clusters increase in size and number at the post-synaptic membrane with no other major structural changes of the pre- and post-synaptic elements.

  6. Correlating Fluorescence and High-Resolution Scanning Electron Microscopy (HRSEM) for the study of GABAA receptor clustering induced by inhibitory synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orlando, Marta; Ravasenga, Tiziana; Petrini, Enrica Maria; Falqui, Andrea; Marotta, Roberto; Barberis, Andrea

    2017-10-23

    Both excitatory and inhibitory synaptic contacts display activity dependent dynamic changes in their efficacy that are globally termed synaptic plasticity. Although the molecular mechanisms underlying glutamatergic synaptic plasticity have been extensively investigated and described, those responsible for inhibitory synaptic plasticity are only beginning to be unveiled. In this framework, the ultrastructural changes of the inhibitory synapses during plasticity have been poorly investigated. Here we combined confocal fluorescence microscopy (CFM) with high resolution scanning electron microscopy (HRSEM) to characterize the fine structural rearrangements of post-synaptic GABA A Receptors (GABA A Rs) at the nanometric scale during the induction of inhibitory long-term potentiation (iLTP). Additional electron tomography (ET) experiments on immunolabelled hippocampal neurons allowed the visualization of synaptic contacts and confirmed the reorganization of post-synaptic GABA A R clusters in response to chemical iLTP inducing protocol. Altogether, these approaches revealed that, following the induction of inhibitory synaptic potentiation, GABA A R clusters increase in size and number at the post-synaptic membrane with no other major structural changes of the pre- and post-synaptic elements.

  7. GABAergic and cortical and subcortical glutamatergic axon terminals contain CB1 cannabinoid receptors in the ventromedial nucleus of the hypothalamus.

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    Leire Reguero

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Type-1 cannabinoid receptors (CB(1R are enriched in the hypothalamus, particularly in the ventromedial hypothalamic nucleus (VMH that participates in homeostatic and behavioral functions including food intake. Although CB(1R activation modulates excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission in the brain, CB(1R contribution to the molecular architecture of the excitatory and inhibitory synaptic terminals in the VMH is not known. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate the precise subcellular distribution of CB(1R in the VMH to better understand the modulation exerted by the endocannabinoid system on the complex brain circuitries converging into this nucleus. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Light and electron microscopy techniques were used to analyze CB(1R distribution in the VMH of CB(1R-WT, CB(1R-KO and conditional mutant mice bearing a selective deletion of CB(1R in cortical glutamatergic (Glu-CB(1R-KO or GABAergic neurons (GABA-CB(1R-KO. At light microscopy, CB(1R immunolabeling was observed in the VMH of CB(1R-WT and Glu-CB(1R-KO animals, being remarkably reduced in GABA-CB(1R-KO mice. In the electron microscope, CB(1R appeared in membranes of both glutamatergic and GABAergic terminals/preterminals. There was no significant difference in the percentage of CB(1R immunopositive profiles and CB(1R density in terminals making asymmetric or symmetric synapses in CB(1R-WT mice. Furthermore, the proportion of CB(1R immunopositive terminals/preterminals in CB(1R-WT and Glu-CB(1R-KO mice was reduced in GABA-CB(1R-KO mutants. CB(1R density was similar in all animal conditions. Finally, the percentage of CB(1R labeled boutons making asymmetric synapses slightly decreased in Glu-CB(1R-KO mutants relative to CB(1R-WT mice, indicating that CB(1R was distributed in cortical and subcortical excitatory synaptic terminals. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our anatomical results support the idea that the VMH is a relevant hub candidate in

  8. MET receptor tyrosine kinase controls dendritic complexity, spine morphogenesis, and glutamatergic synapse maturation in the hippocampus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qiu, Shenfeng; Lu, Zhongming; Levitt, Pat

    2014-12-03

    The MET receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK), implicated in risk for autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and in functional and structural circuit integrity in humans, is a temporally and spatially regulated receptor enriched in dorsal pallial-derived structures during mouse forebrain development. Here we report that loss or gain of function of MET in vitro or in vivo leads to changes, opposite in nature, in dendritic complexity, spine morphogenesis, and the timing of glutamatergic synapse maturation onto hippocampus CA1 neurons. Consistent with the morphological and biochemical changes, deletion of Met in mutant mice results in precocious maturation of excitatory synapse, as indicated by a reduction of the proportion of silent synapses, a faster GluN2A subunit switch, and an enhanced acquisition of AMPA receptors at synaptic sites. Thus, MET-mediated signaling appears to serve as a mechanism for controlling the timing of neuronal growth and functional maturation. These studies suggest that mistimed maturation of glutamatergic synapses leads to the aberrant neural circuits that may be associated with ASD risk. Copyright © 2014 the authors 0270-6474/14/3416166-14$15.00/0.

  9. Development of Glutamatergic Proteins in Human Visual Cortex across the Lifespan.

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    Siu, Caitlin R; Beshara, Simon P; Jones, David G; Murphy, Kathryn M

    2017-06-21

    Traditionally, human primary visual cortex (V1) has been thought to mature within the first few years of life, based on anatomical studies of synapse formation, and establishment of intracortical and intercortical connections. Human vision, however, develops well beyond the first few years. Previously, we found prolonged development of some GABAergic proteins in human V1 (Pinto et al., 2010). Yet as >80% of synapses in V1 are excitatory, it remains unanswered whether the majority of synapses regulating experience-dependent plasticity and receptive field properties develop late, like their inhibitory counterparts. To address this question, we used Western blotting of postmortem tissue from human V1 (12 female, 18 male) covering a range of ages. Then we quantified a set of postsynaptic glutamatergic proteins (PSD-95, GluA2, GluN1, GluN2A, GluN2B), calculated indices for functional pairs that are developmentally regulated (GluA2:GluN1; GluN2A:GluN2B), and determined interindividual variability. We found early loss of GluN1, prolonged development of PSD-95 and GluA2 into late childhood, protracted development of GluN2A until ∼40 years, and dramatic loss of GluN2A in aging. The GluA2:GluN1 index switched at ∼1 year, but the GluN2A:GluN2B index continued to shift until ∼40 year before changing back to GluN2B in aging. We also identified young childhood as a stage of heightened interindividual variability. The changes show that human V1 develops gradually through a series of five orchestrated stages, making it likely that V1 participates in visual development and plasticity across the lifespan. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Anatomical structure of human V1 appears to mature early, but vision changes across the lifespan. This discrepancy has fostered two hypotheses: either other aspects of V1 continue changing, or later changes in visual perception depend on extrastriate areas. Previously, we showed that some GABAergic synaptic proteins change across the lifespan, but most

  10. 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.

  11. Metabotropic glutamatergic receptors and their ligands in drug addiction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pomierny-Chamioło, Lucyna; Rup, Kinga; Pomierny, Bartosz; Niedzielska, Ewa; Kalivas, Peter W; Filip, Małgorzata

    2014-06-01

    Glutamatergic excitatory transmission is implicated in physiological and pathological conditions like learning, memory, neuronal plasticity and emotions, while glutamatergic abnormalities are reported in numerous neurological and psychiatric disorders, including neurodegenerative diseases, epilepsy, stroke, traumatic brain injury, depression, anxiety, schizophrenia and pain. Also, several lines of evidence have accumulated indicating a pivotal role for glutamatergic neurotransmission in mediating addictive behaviors. Among the proteins regulating glutamatergic transmission, the metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluR) are being developed as pharmacological targets for treating many neuropsychiatric disorders, including drug addiction. In this review we describe the molecular structure of mGluRs and their distribution, physiology and pharmacology in the central nervous system, as well as their use as targets in preclinical studies of drug addiction. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Modulation of extrasynaptic NMDA receptors by synaptic and tonic zinc.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Charles T; Radford, Robert J; Zastrow, Melissa L; Zhang, Daniel Y; Apfel, Ulf-Peter; Lippard, Stephen J; Tzounopoulos, Thanos

    2015-05-19

    Many excitatory synapses contain high levels of mobile zinc within glutamatergic vesicles. Although synaptic zinc and glutamate are coreleased, it is controversial whether zinc diffuses away from the release site or whether it remains bound to presynaptic membranes or proteins after its release. To study zinc transmission and quantify zinc levels, we required a high-affinity rapid zinc chelator as well as an extracellular ratiometric fluorescent zinc sensor. We demonstrate that tricine, considered a preferred chelator for studying the role of synaptic zinc, is unable to efficiently prevent zinc from binding low-nanomolar zinc-binding sites, such as the high-affinity zinc-binding site found in NMDA receptors (NMDARs). Here, we used ZX1, which has a 1 nM zinc dissociation constant and second-order rate constant for binding zinc that is 200-fold higher than those for tricine and CaEDTA. We find that synaptic zinc is phasically released during action potentials. In response to short trains of presynaptic stimulation, synaptic zinc diffuses beyond the synaptic cleft where it inhibits extrasynaptic NMDARs. During higher rates of presynaptic stimulation, released glutamate activates additional extrasynaptic NMDARs that are not reached by synaptically released zinc, but which are inhibited by ambient, tonic levels of nonsynaptic zinc. By performing a ratiometric evaluation of extracellular zinc levels in the dorsal cochlear nucleus, we determined the tonic zinc levels to be low nanomolar. These results demonstrate a physiological role for endogenous synaptic as well as tonic zinc in inhibiting extrasynaptic NMDARs and thereby fine tuning neuronal excitability and signaling.

  13. Modulation of extrasynaptic NMDA receptors by synaptic and tonic zinc

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Charles T.; Radford, Robert J.; Zastrow, Melissa L.; Zhang, Daniel Y.; Apfel, Ulf-Peter; Lippard, Stephen J.; Tzounopoulos, Thanos

    2015-01-01

    Many excitatory synapses contain high levels of mobile zinc within glutamatergic vesicles. Although synaptic zinc and glutamate are coreleased, it is controversial whether zinc diffuses away from the release site or whether it remains bound to presynaptic membranes or proteins after its release. To study zinc transmission and quantify zinc levels, we required a high-affinity rapid zinc chelator as well as an extracellular ratiometric fluorescent zinc sensor. We demonstrate that tricine, considered a preferred chelator for studying the role of synaptic zinc, is unable to efficiently prevent zinc from binding low-nanomolar zinc-binding sites, such as the high-affinity zinc-binding site found in NMDA receptors (NMDARs). Here, we used ZX1, which has a 1 nM zinc dissociation constant and second-order rate constant for binding zinc that is 200-fold higher than those for tricine and CaEDTA. We find that synaptic zinc is phasically released during action potentials. In response to short trains of presynaptic stimulation, synaptic zinc diffuses beyond the synaptic cleft where it inhibits extrasynaptic NMDARs. During higher rates of presynaptic stimulation, released glutamate activates additional extrasynaptic NMDARs that are not reached by synaptically released zinc, but which are inhibited by ambient, tonic levels of nonsynaptic zinc. By performing a ratiometric evaluation of extracellular zinc levels in the dorsal cochlear nucleus, we determined the tonic zinc levels to be low nanomolar. These results demonstrate a physiological role for endogenous synaptic as well as tonic zinc in inhibiting extrasynaptic NMDARs and thereby fine tuning neuronal excitability and signaling. PMID:25947151

  14. Neurotensin enhances glutamatergic EPSCs in VTA neurons by acting on different neurotensin receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bose, Poulomee; Rompré, Pierre-Paul; Warren, Richard A

    2015-11-01

    Neurotensin (NT) is an endogenous neuropeptide that modulates dopamine and glutamate neurotransmission in several limbic regions innervated by neurons located in the ventral tegmental area (VTA). While several studies showed that NT exerted a direct modulation on VTA dopamine neurons less is known about its role in the modulation of glutamatergic neurotransmission in this region. The present study was aimed at characterising the effects of NT on glutamate-mediated responses in different populations of VTA neurons. Using whole cell patch clamp recording technique in horizontal rat brain slices, we measured the amplitude of glutamatergic excitatory post-synaptic currents (EPSCs) evoked by electrical stimulation of VTA afferents before and after application of different concentrations of NT1-13 or its C-terminal fragment, NT8-13. Neurons were classified as either Ih(+) or Ih(-) based on the presence or absence of a hyperpolarisation activated cationic current (Ih). We found that NT1-13 and NT8-13 produced comparable concentration dependent increase in the amplitude of EPSCs in both Ih(+) and Ih(-) neurons. In Ih(+) neurons, the enhancement effect of NT8-13 was blocked by both antagonists, while in Ih(-) neurons it was blocked by the NTS1/NTS2 antagonist, SR142948A, but not the preferred NTS1 antagonist, SR48692. In as much as Ih(-) neurons are non-dopaminergic neurons and Ih(+) neurons represent both dopamine and non-dopamine neurons, we can conclude that NT enhances glutamatergic mediated responses in dopamine, and in a subset of non-dopamine, neurons by acting respectively on NTS1 and an NT receptor other than NTS1. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Functional recovery after cervical spinal cord injury: Role of neurotrophin and glutamatergic signaling in phrenic motoneurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gill, Luther C; Gransee, Heather M; Sieck, Gary C; Mantilla, Carlos B

    2016-06-01

    Cervical spinal cord injury (SCI) interrupts descending neural drive to phrenic motoneurons causing diaphragm muscle (DIAm) paralysis. Recent studies using a well-established model of SCI, unilateral spinal hemisection of the C2 segment of the cervical spinal cord (SH), provide novel information regarding the molecular and cellular mechanisms of functional recovery after SCI. Over time post-SH, gradual recovery of rhythmic ipsilateral DIAm activity occurs. Recovery of ipsilateral DIAm electromyogram (EMG) activity following SH is enhanced by increasing brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in the region of the phrenic motoneuron pool. Delivery of exogenous BDNF either via intrathecal infusion or via mesenchymal stem cells engineered to release BDNF similarly enhance recovery. Conversely, recovery after SH is blunted by quenching endogenous BDNF with the fusion-protein TrkB-Fc in the region of the phrenic motoneuron pool or by selective inhibition of TrkB kinase activity using a chemical-genetic approach in TrkB(F616A) mice. Furthermore, the importance of BDNF signaling via TrkB receptors at phrenic motoneurons is highlighted by the blunting of recovery by siRNA-mediated downregulation of TrkB receptor expression in phrenic motoneurons and by the enhancement of recovery evident following virally-induced increases in TrkB expression specifically in phrenic motoneurons. BDNF/TrkB signaling regulates synaptic plasticity in various neuronal systems, including glutamatergic pathways. Glutamatergic neurotransmission constitutes the main inspiratory-related, excitatory drive to motoneurons, and following SH, spontaneous neuroplasticity is associated with increased expression of ionotropic N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptors in phrenic motoneurons. Evidence for the role of BDNF/TrkB and glutamatergic signaling in recovery of DIAm activity following cervical SCI is reviewed. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. The excitatory/inhibitory input to orexin/hypocretin neuron soma undergoes day/night reorganization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laperchia, Claudia; Imperatore, Roberta; Azeez, Idris A; Del Gallo, Federico; Bertini, Giuseppe; Grassi-Zucconi, Gigliola; Cristino, Luigia; Bentivoglio, Marina

    2017-11-01

    Orexin (OX)/hypocretin-containing neurons are main regulators of wakefulness stability, arousal, and energy homeostasis. Their activity varies in relation to the animal's behavioral state. We here tested whether such variation is subserved by synaptic plasticity phenomena in basal conditions. Mice were sacrificed during day or night, at times when sleep or wake, respectively, predominates, as assessed by electroencephalography in matched mice. Triple immunofluorescence was used to visualize OX-A perikarya and varicosities containing the vesicular glutamate transporter (VGluT)2 or the vesicular GABA transporter (VGAT) combined with synaptophysin (Syn) as a presynaptic marker. Appositions on OX-A + somata were quantitatively analyzed in pairs of sections in epifluorescence and confocal microscopy. The combined total number of glutamatergic (Syn + /VGluT2 + ) and GABAergic (Syn + /VGAT + ) varicosities apposed to OX-A somata was similar during day and night. However, glutamatergic varicosities were significantly more numerous at night, whereas GABAergic varicosities prevailed in the day. Triple immunofluorescence in confocal microscopy was employed to visualize synapse scaffold proteins as postsynaptic markers and confirmed the nighttime prevalence of VGluT2 + together with postsynaptic density protein 95 + excitatory contacts, and daytime prevalence of VGAT + together with gephyrin + inhibitory contacts, while also showing that they formed synapses on OX-A + cell bodies. The findings reveal a daily reorganization of axosomatic synapses in orexinergic neurons, with a switch from a prevalence of excitatory innervation at a time corresponding to wakefulness to a prevalence of inhibitory innervations in the antiphase, at a time corresponding to sleep. This reorganization could represent a key mechanism of plasticity of the orexinergic network in basal conditions.

  17. Synaptic and intrinsic activation of GABAergic neurons in the cardiorespiratory brainstem network.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julie G Frank

    Full Text Available GABAergic pathways in the brainstem play an essential role in respiratory rhythmogenesis and interactions between the respiratory and cardiovascular neuronal control networks. However, little is known about the identity and function of these GABAergic inhibitory neurons and what determines their activity. In this study we have identified a population of GABAergic neurons in the ventrolateral medulla that receive increased excitatory post-synaptic potentials during inspiration, but also have spontaneous firing in the absence of synaptic input. Using transgenic mice that express GFP under the control of the Gad1 (GAD67 gene promoter, we determined that this population of GABAergic neurons is in close apposition to cardioinhibitory parasympathetic cardiac neurons in the nucleus ambiguus (NA. These neurons fire in synchronization with inspiratory activity. Although they receive excitatory glutamatergic synaptic inputs during inspiration, this excitatory neurotransmission was not altered by blocking nicotinic receptors, and many of these GABAergic neurons continue to fire after synaptic blockade. The spontaneous firing in these GABAergic neurons was not altered by the voltage-gated calcium channel blocker cadmium chloride that blocks both neurotransmission to these neurons and voltage-gated Ca(2+ currents, but spontaneous firing was diminished by riluzole, demonstrating a role of persistent sodium channels in the spontaneous firing in these cardiorespiratory GABAergic neurons that possess a pacemaker phenotype. The spontaneously firing GABAergic neurons identified in this study that increase their activity during inspiration would support respiratory rhythm generation if they acted primarily to inhibit post-inspiratory neurons and thereby release inspiration neurons to increase their activity. This population of inspiratory-modulated GABAergic neurons could also play a role in inhibiting neurons that are most active during expiration and provide a

  18. Synaptic and intrinsic activation of GABAergic neurons in the cardiorespiratory brainstem network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frank, Julie G; Mendelowitz, David

    2012-01-01

    GABAergic pathways in the brainstem play an essential role in respiratory rhythmogenesis and interactions between the respiratory and cardiovascular neuronal control networks. However, little is known about the identity and function of these GABAergic inhibitory neurons and what determines their activity. In this study we have identified a population of GABAergic neurons in the ventrolateral medulla that receive increased excitatory post-synaptic potentials during inspiration, but also have spontaneous firing in the absence of synaptic input. Using transgenic mice that express GFP under the control of the Gad1 (GAD67) gene promoter, we determined that this population of GABAergic neurons is in close apposition to cardioinhibitory parasympathetic cardiac neurons in the nucleus ambiguus (NA). These neurons fire in synchronization with inspiratory activity. Although they receive excitatory glutamatergic synaptic inputs during inspiration, this excitatory neurotransmission was not altered by blocking nicotinic receptors, and many of these GABAergic neurons continue to fire after synaptic blockade. The spontaneous firing in these GABAergic neurons was not altered by the voltage-gated calcium channel blocker cadmium chloride that blocks both neurotransmission to these neurons and voltage-gated Ca(2+) currents, but spontaneous firing was diminished by riluzole, demonstrating a role of persistent sodium channels in the spontaneous firing in these cardiorespiratory GABAergic neurons that possess a pacemaker phenotype. The spontaneously firing GABAergic neurons identified in this study that increase their activity during inspiration would support respiratory rhythm generation if they acted primarily to inhibit post-inspiratory neurons and thereby release inspiration neurons to increase their activity. This population of inspiratory-modulated GABAergic neurons could also play a role in inhibiting neurons that are most active during expiration and provide a framework for

  19. Contribution of presynaptic HCN channels to excitatory inputs of spinal substantia gelatinosa neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, S-C; Wu, J; Zhang, D-Y; Jiang, C-Y; Xie, C-N; Liu, T

    2017-09-01

    Hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN) channels are pathological pain-associated voltage-gated ion channels. They are widely expressed in central nervous system including spinal lamina II (also named the substantia gelatinosa, SG). Here, we examined the distribution of HCN channels in glutamatergic synaptic terminals as well as their role in the modulation of synaptic transmission in SG neurons from SD rats and glutamic acid decarboxylase-67 (GAD67)-GFP mice. We found that the expression of the HCN channel isoforms was varied in SG. The HCN4 isoform showed the highest level of co-localization with VGLUT2 (23±3%). In 53% (n=21/40 neurons) of the SG neurons examined in SD rats, application of HCN channel blocker, ZD7288 (10μM), decreased the frequency of spontaneous (s) and miniature (m) excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) by 37±4% and 33±4%, respectively. Consistently, forskolin (FSK) (an activator of adenylate cyclase) significantly increased the frequency of mEPSCs by 225±34%, which could be partially inhibited by ZD7288. Interestingly, the effects of ZD7288 and FSK on sEPSC frequency were replicated in non-GFP-expressing neurons, but not in GFP-expressing GABAergic SG neurons, in GAD67-GFP transgenic C57/BL6 mice. In summary, our results represent a previously unknown cellular mechanism by which presynaptic HCN channels, especially HCN4, regulate the glutamate release from presynaptic terminals that target excitatory, but not inhibitory SG interneurons. Copyright © 2017 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Investigation of synapse formation and function in a glutamatergic-GABAergic two-neuron microcircuit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Chia-Ling; Trimbuch, Thorsten; Chao, Hsiao-Tuan; Jordan, Julia-Christine; Herman, Melissa A; Rosenmund, Christian

    2014-01-15

    Neural circuits are composed of mainly glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons, which communicate through synaptic connections. Many factors instruct the formation and function of these synapses; however, it is difficult to dissect the contribution of intrinsic cell programs from that of extrinsic environmental effects in an intact network. Here, we perform paired recordings from two-neuron microculture preparations of mouse hippocampal glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons to investigate how synaptic input and output of these two principal cells develop. In our reduced preparation, we found that glutamatergic neurons showed no change in synaptic output or input regardless of partner neuron cell type or neuronal activity level. In contrast, we found that glutamatergic input caused the GABAergic neuron to modify its output by way of an increase in synapse formation and a decrease in synaptic release efficiency. These findings are consistent with aspects of GABAergic synapse maturation observed in many brain regions. In addition, changes in GABAergic output are cell wide and not target-cell specific. We also found that glutamatergic neuronal activity determined the AMPA receptor properties of synapses on the partner GABAergic neuron. All modifications of GABAergic input and output required activity of the glutamatergic neuron. Because our system has reduced extrinsic factors, the changes we saw in the GABAergic neuron due to glutamatergic input may reflect initiation of maturation programs that underlie the formation and function of in vivo neural circuits.

  1. Lamina-specific contribution of glutamatergic and GABAergic potentials to hippocampal sharp wave-ripple complexes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schönberger, Jan; Draguhn, Andreas; Both, Martin

    2014-01-01

    The mammalian hippocampus expresses highly organized patterns of neuronal activity which form a neuronal correlate of spatial memories. These memory-encoding neuronal ensembles form on top of different network oscillations which entrain neurons in a state- and experience-dependent manner. The mechanisms underlying activation, timing and selection of participating neurons are incompletely understood. Here we studied the synaptic mechanisms underlying one prominent network pattern called sharp wave-ripple complexes (SPW-R) which are involved in memory consolidation during sleep. We recorded SPW-R with extracellular electrodes along the different layers of area CA1 in mouse hippocampal slices. Contribution of glutamatergic excitation and GABAergic inhibition, respectively, was probed by local application of receptor antagonists into s. radiatum, pyramidale and oriens. Laminar profiles of field potentials show that GABAergic potentials contribute substantially to sharp waves and superimposed ripple oscillations in s. pyramidale. Inhibitory inputs to s. pyramidale and s. oriens are crucial for action potential timing by ripple oscillations, as revealed by multiunit-recordings in the pyramidal cell layer. Glutamatergic afferents, on the other hand, contribute to sharp waves in s. radiatum where they also evoke a fast oscillation at ~200 Hz. Surprisingly, field ripples in s. radiatum are slightly slower than ripples in s. pyramidale, resulting in a systematic shift between dendritic and somatic oscillations. This complex interplay between dendritic excitation and perisomatic inhibition may be responsible for the precise timing of discharge probability during the time course of SPW-R. Together, our data illustrate a complementary role of spatially confined excitatory and inhibitory transmission during highly ordered network patterns in the hippocampus.

  2. Propagation of Homeostatic Sleep Signals by Segregated Synaptic Microcircuits of the Drosophila Mushroom Body.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sitaraman, Divya; Aso, Yoshinori; Jin, Xin; Chen, Nan; Felix, Mario; Rubin, Gerald M; Nitabach, Michael N

    2015-11-16

    The Drosophila mushroom body (MB) is a key associative memory center that has also been implicated in the control of sleep. However, the identity of MB neurons underlying homeostatic sleep regulation, as well as the types of sleep signals generated by specific classes of MB neurons, has remained poorly understood. We recently identified two MB output neuron (MBON) classes whose axons convey sleep control signals from the MB to converge in the same downstream target region: a cholinergic sleep-promoting MBON class and a glutamatergic wake-promoting MBON class. Here, we deploy a combination of neurogenetic, behavioral, and physiological approaches to identify and mechanistically dissect sleep-controlling circuits of the MB. Our studies reveal the existence of two segregated excitatory synaptic microcircuits that propagate homeostatic sleep information from different populations of intrinsic MB "Kenyon cells" (KCs) to specific sleep-regulating MBONs: sleep-promoting KCs increase sleep by preferentially activating the cholinergic MBONs, while wake-promoting KCs decrease sleep by preferentially activating the glutamatergic MBONs. Importantly, activity of the sleep-promoting MB microcircuit is increased by sleep deprivation and is necessary for homeostatic rebound sleep (i.e., the increased sleep that occurs after, and in compensation for, sleep lost during deprivation). These studies reveal for the first time specific functional connections between subsets of KCs and particular MBONs and establish the identity of synaptic microcircuits underlying transmission of homeostatic sleep signals in the MB. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. The Impact of Stimulation Induced Short Term Synaptic Plasticity on Firing Patterns in the Globus Pallidus of the Rat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jenia eBugaysen

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Electrical stimulation in the globus pallidus (GP leads to complex modulations of neuronal activity in the stimulated nucleus. Multiple in-vivo studies have demonstrated the modulation of both firing rates and patterns during and immediately following the GP stimulation. Previous in-vitro studies, together with computational studies, have suggested the involvement of short-term synaptic plasticity (STP during the stimulation. The aim of the current study was to explore in-vitro the effects of STP on neuronal activity of GP neurons during local repetitive stimulation. We recorded synaptic potentials and assessed the modulations of spontaneous firing in a postsynaptic neuron in acute brain slices via a whole-cell pipette. Low-frequency repetitive stimulation locked the firing of the neuron to the stimulus. However, high-frequency repetitive stimulation in the GP generated a biphasic modulation of the firing frequency consisting of inhibitory and excitatory phases. Using blockers of synaptic transmission, we show that GABAergic synapses mediated the inhibitory and glutamatergic synapses the excitatory part of the response. Furthermore, we report that at high stimulation frequencies both types of synapses undergo short-term depression leading to a time dependent modulation of the neuronal firing. These findings indicate that STP modulates the dynamic responses of pallidal activity during electrical stimulation, and may contribute to a better understanding of the mechanism underlying deep brain stimulation (DBS like protocols.

  4. Understanding complexities of synaptic transmission in medically intractable seizures: A paradigm of epilepsy research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jyotirmoy Banerjee

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Investigating the changes associated with the development of epileptic state in humans is complex and requires a multidisciplinary approach. Understanding the intricacies of medically intractable epilepsy still remains a challenge for neurosurgeons across the world. A significant number of patients who has undergone resective brain surgery for epilepsy still continue to have seizures. The reason behind this therapy resistance still eludes us. Thus to develop a cure for the difficult to treat epilepsy, we need to comprehensively study epileptogenesis. Although various animal models are developed but none of them replicate the pathological conditions in humans. So the ideal way to understand epileptogenecity is to examine the tissue resected for the treatment of intractable epilepsy. Advanced imaging and electrical localization procedures are utilized to establish the epileptogenic zone in epilepsy patients. Further molecular and cytological studies are required for the microscopic analysis of brain samples collected from the epileptogenic focus. As alterations in inhibitory as well as excitatory synaptic transmission are key features of epilepsy, understanding the regulation of neurotransmission in the resected surgery zone is of immense importance. Here we summarize various modalities of in vitro slice analysis from the resected brain specimen to understand the changes in GABAergic and glutamatergic synaptic transmission in epileptogenic zone. We also review evidence pertaining to the proposed role of nicotinic receptors in abnormal synaptic transmission which is one of the major causes of epileptiform activity. Elucidation of current concepts in regulation of synaptic transmission will help develop therapies for epilepsy cases that cannot me managed pharmacologically.

  5. Glutamatergic substrates of drug addiction and alcoholism1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gass, Justin T.; Foster Olive, M.

    2008-01-01

    The past two decades have witnessed a dramatic accumulation of evidence indicating that the excitatory amino acid glutamate plays an important role in drug addiction and alcoholism. The purpose of this review is to summarize findings on glutamatergic substrates of addiction, surveying data from both human and animal studies. The effects of various drugs of abuse on glutamatergic neurotransmission are discussed, as are the effects of pharmacological or genetic manipulation of various components of glutamate transmission on drug reinforcement, conditioned reward, extinction, and relapse-like behavior. In addition, glutamatergic agents that are currently in use or are undergoing testing in clinical trials for the treatment of addiction are discussed, including acamprosate, N-acetylcysteine, modafinil, topiramate, lamotrigine, gabapentin and mematine. All drugs of abuse appear to modulate glutamatergic transmission, albeit by different mechanisms, and this modulation of glutamate transmission is believed to result in long-lasting neuroplastic changes in the brain that may contribute to the perseveration of drug-seeking behavior and drug-associated memories. In general, attenuation of glutamatergic transmission reduces drug reward, reinforcement, and relapse-like behavior. On the other hand, potentiation of glutamatergic transmission appears to facilitate the extinction of drug-seeking behavior. However, attempts at identifying genetic polymorphisms in components of glutamate transmission in humans have yielded only a limited number of candidate genes that may serve as risk factors for the development of addiction. Nonetheless, manipulation of glutamatergic neurotransmission appears to be a promising avenue of research in developing improved therapeutic agents for the treatment of drug addiction and alcoholism. PMID:17706608

  6. Distribution of glutamatergic, GABAergic, and glycinergic neurons in the auditory pathways of macaque monkeys.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ito, T; Inoue, K; Takada, M

    2015-12-03

    Macaque monkeys use complex communication calls and are regarded as a model for studying the coding and decoding of complex sound in the auditory system. However, little is known about the distribution of excitatory and inhibitory neurons in the auditory system of macaque monkeys. In this study, we examined the overall distribution of cell bodies that expressed mRNAs for VGLUT1, and VGLUT2 (markers for glutamatergic neurons), GAD67 (a marker for GABAergic neurons), and GLYT2 (a marker for glycinergic neurons) in the auditory system of the Japanese macaque. In addition, we performed immunohistochemistry for VGLUT1, VGLUT2, and GAD67 in order to compare the distribution of proteins and mRNAs. We found that most of the excitatory neurons in the auditory brainstem expressed VGLUT2. In contrast, the expression of VGLUT1 mRNA was restricted to the auditory cortex (AC), periolivary nuclei, and cochlear nuclei (CN). The co-expression of GAD67 and GLYT2 mRNAs was common in the ventral nucleus of the lateral lemniscus (VNLL), CN, and superior olivary complex except for the medial nucleus of the trapezoid body, which expressed GLYT2 alone. In contrast, the dorsal nucleus of the lateral lemniscus, inferior colliculus, thalamus, and AC expressed GAD67 alone. The absence of co-expression of VGLUT1 and VGLUT2 in the medial geniculate, medial superior olive, and VNLL suggests that synaptic responses in the target neurons of these nuclei may be different between rodents and macaque monkeys. Copyright © 2015 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Excitatory amino acid transmitters in epilepsy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meldrum, B S

    1991-01-01

    For the majority of human epilepsy syndromes, the molecular and cellular basis for the epileptic activity remains largely conjectural. The principal hypotheses currently concern: defects in membrane ionic conductances or transport mechanisms; defects in gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)-mediated inhibitory processes; and enhanced or abnormal excitatory synaptic action. Substantial evidence exists in humans and animals for acquired abnormalities in excitatory amino acid neurotransmission that may participate in the abnormal patterns of neuronal discharge, and this could provide the morphological basis for a recurrent excitatory pathway sustaining seizure discharges in temporal lobe epilepsy. In practice, two approaches appear significant in the suppression of seizures. One is to act postsynaptically on receptors to decrease the excitation induced by glutamate, and the other is to decrease synaptic release of glutamate and aspartate. Agents acting upon adenosine or GABAB receptors decrease glutamate release in vitro but do not have significant anticonvulsant activity, probably because of their predominant actions at other sites. Lamotrigine blocks stimulated release of glutamate and shows anticonvulsant activity in a wide range of animal models.

  8. Excitatory/inhibitory imbalance in autism spectrum disorders: Implications for interventions and therapeutics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uzunova, Genoveva; Pallanti, Stefano; Hollander, Eric

    2016-04-01

    Imbalance between excitation and inhibition and increased excitatory-inhibitory (E-I) ratio is a common mechanism in autism spectrum disorders (ASD) that is responsible for the learning and memory, cognitive, sensory, motor deficits, and seizures occurring in these disorders. ASD are very heterogeneous and better understanding of E-I imbalance in brain will lead to better diagnosis and treatments. We perform a critical literature review of the causes and presentations of E-I imbalance in ASD. E-I imbalance in ASD is due primarily to abnormal glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission in key brain regions such as neocortex, hippocampus, amygdala, and cerebellum. Other causes are due to dysfunction of neuropeptides (oxytocin), synaptic proteins (neuroligins), and immune system molecules (cytokines). At the neuropathological level E-I imbalance in ASD is presented as a "minicolumnopathy". E-I imbalance alters the manner by which the brain processes information and regulates behaviour. New developments for investigating E-I imbalance such as optogenetics and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) are presented. Non-invasive brain stimulation methods such as TMS for treatment of the core symptoms of ASD are discussed. Understanding E-I imbalance has important implications for developing better pharmacological and behavioural treatments for ASD, including TMS, new drugs, biomarkers and patient stratification.

  9. Synaptic plasticity in drug reward circuitry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winder, Danny G; Egli, Regula E; Schramm, Nicole L; Matthews, Robert T

    2002-11-01

    Drug addiction is a major public health issue worldwide. The persistence of drug craving coupled with the known recruitment of learning and memory centers in the brain has led investigators to hypothesize that the alterations in glutamatergic synaptic efficacy brought on by synaptic plasticity may play key roles in the addiction process. Here we review the present literature, examining the properties of synaptic plasticity within drug reward circuitry, and the effects that drugs of abuse have on these forms of plasticity. Interestingly, multiple forms of synaptic plasticity can be induced at glutamatergic synapses within the dorsal striatum, its ventral extension the nucleus accumbens, and the ventral tegmental area, and at least some of these forms of plasticity are regulated by behaviorally meaningful administration of cocaine and/or amphetamine. Thus, the present data suggest that regulation of synaptic plasticity in reward circuits is a tractable candidate mechanism underlying aspects of addiction.

  10. Presynaptic inhibition of GABAergic synaptic transmission by adenosine in mouse hypothalamic hypocretin neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xia, J X; Xiong, J X; Wang, H K; Duan, S M; Ye, J N; Hu, Z A

    2012-01-10

    Hypocretin neurons in the lateral hypothalamus, a new wakefulness-promoting center, have been recently regarded as an important target involved in endogenous adenosine-regulating sleep homeostasis. The GABAergic synaptic transmissions are the main inhibitory afferents to hypocretin neurons, which play an important role in the regulation of excitability of these neurons. The inhibitory effect of adenosine, a homeostatic sleep-promoting factor, on the excitatory glutamatergic synaptic transmissions in hypocretin neurons has been well documented, whether adenosine also modulates these inhibitory GABAergic synaptic transmissions in these neurons has not been investigated. In this study, the effect of adenosine on inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) in hypocretin neurons was examined by using perforated patch-clamp recordings in the acute hypothalamic slices. The findings demonstrated that adenosine suppressed the amplitude of evoked IPSCs in a dose-dependent manner, which was completely abolished by 8-cyclopentyltheophylline (CPT), a selective antagonist of adenosine A1 receptor but not adenosine A2 receptor antagonist 3,7-dimethyl-1-(2-propynyl) xanthine. A presynaptic origin was suggested as following: adenosine increased paired-pulse ratio as well as reduced GABAergic miniature IPSC frequency without affecting the miniature IPSC amplitude. Further findings demonstrated that when the frequency of electrical stimulation was raised to 10 Hz, but not 1 Hz, a time-dependent depression of evoked IPSC amplitude was detected in hypocretin neurons, which could be partially blocked by CPT. However, under a higher frequency at 100 Hz stimulation, CPT had no action on the depressed GABAergic synaptic transmission induced by such tetanic stimulation in these hypocretin neurons. These results suggest that endogenous adenosine generated under certain stronger activities of synaptic transmissions exerts an inhibitory effect on GABAergic synaptic transmission in hypocretin

  11. Innervation by a GABAergic neuron depresses spontaneous release in glutamatergic neurons and unveils the clamping phenotype of synaptotagmin-1

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wierda, Keimpe D B; Sørensen, Jakob Balslev

    2014-01-01

    The role of spontaneously occurring release events in glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons and their regulation is intensely debated. To study the interdependence of glutamatergic and GABAergic spontaneous release, we compared reciprocally connected "mixed" glutamatergic/GABAergic neuronal pairs...... from mice cultured on astrocyte islands with "homotypic" glutamatergic or GABAergic pairs and autaptic neurons. We measured mEPSC and mIPSC frequencies simultaneously from both neurons. Neuronal pairs formed both interneuronal synaptic and autaptic connections indiscriminately. We find that whereas m......EPSC and mIPSC frequencies did not deviate between autaptic and synaptic connections, the frequency of mEPSCs in mixed pairs was strongly depressed compared with either autaptic neurons or glutamatergic pairs. Simultaneous imaging of synapses, or comparison to evoked release amplitudes, showed...

  12. Witnessing stressful events induces glutamatergic synapse pathway alterations and gene set enrichment of positive EPSP regulation within the VTA of adult mice: An ontology based approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brewer, Jacob S.

    It is well known that exposure to severe stress increases the risk for developing mood disorders. Currently, the neurobiological and genetic mechanisms underlying the functional effects of psychological stress are poorly understood. Presenting a major obstacle to the study of psychological stress is the inability of current animal models of stress to distinguish between physical and psychological stressors. A novel paradigm recently developed by Warren et al., is able to tease apart the effects of physical and psychological stress in adult mice by allowing these mice to "witness," the social defeat of another mouse thus removing confounding variables associated with physical stressors. Using this 'witness' model of stress and RNA-Seq technology, the current study aims to study the genetic effects of psychological stress. After, witnessing the social defeat of another mouse, VTA tissue was extracted, sequenced, and analyzed for differential expression. Since genes often work together in complex networks, a pathway and gene ontology (GO) analysis was performed using data from the differential expression analysis. The pathway and GO analyzes revealed a perturbation of the glutamatergic synapse pathway and an enrichment of positive excitatory post-synaptic potential regulation. This is consistent with the excitatory synapse theory of depression. Together these findings demonstrate a dysregulation of the mesolimbic reward pathway at the gene level as a result of psychological stress potentially contributing to depressive like behaviors.

  13. Ketamine attenuates the glutamatergic neurotransmission in the ventral posteromedial nucleus slices of rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fu, Bao; Liu, Chengxi; Zhang, Yajun; Fu, Xiaoyun; Zhang, Lin; Yu, Tian

    2017-08-23

    Ketamine is a frequently used intravenous anesthetic, which can reversibly induce loss of consciousness (LOC). Previous studies have demonstrated that thalamocortical system is critical for information transmission and integration in the brain. The ventral posteromedial nucleus (VPM) is a critical component of thalamocortical system. Glutamate is an important excitatory neurotransmitter in the brain and may be involved in ketamine-induced LOC. The study used whole-cell patch-clamp to observe the effect of ketamine (30 μM-1000 μM) on glutamatergic neurotransmission in VPM slices. Ketamine significantly decreased the amplitude of glutamatergic spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs), but only higher concentration of ketamine (300 μM and 1000 μM) suppressed the frequency of sEPSCs. Ketamine (100 μM-1000 μM) also decreased the amplitude of glutamatergic miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs), without altering the frequency. In VPM neurons, ketamine attenuates the glutamatergic neurotransmission mainly through postsynaptic mechanism and action potential may be involved in the process.

  14. Multivesicular release underlies short term synaptic potentiation independent of release probability change in the supraoptic nucleus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michelle E Quinlan

    Full Text Available Magnocellular neurons of the supraoptic nucleus receive glutamatergic excitatory inputs that regulate the firing activity and hormone release from these neurons. A strong, brief activation of these excitatory inputs induces a lingering barrage of tetrodotoxin-resistant miniature EPSCs (mEPSCs that lasts for tens of minutes. This is known to accompany an immediate increase in large amplitude mEPSCs. However, it remains unknown how long this amplitude increase can last and whether it is simply a byproduct of greater release probability. Using in vitro patch clamp recording on acute rat brain slices, we found that a brief, high frequency stimulation (HFS of afferents induced a potentiation of mEPSC amplitude lasting up to 20 min. This amplitude potentiation did not correlate with changes in mEPSC frequency, suggesting that it does not reflect changes in presynaptic release probability. Nonetheless, neither postsynaptic calcium chelator nor the NMDA receptor antagonist blocked the potentiation. Together with the known calcium dependency of HFS-induced potentiation of mEPSCs, our results imply that mEPSC amplitude increase requires presynaptic calcium. Further analysis showed multimodal distribution of mEPSC amplitude, suggesting that large mEPSCs were due to multivesicular glutamate release, even at late post-HFS when the frequency is no longer elevated. In conclusion, high frequency activation of excitatory synapses induces lasting multivesicular release in the SON, which is independent of changes in release probability. This represents a novel form of synaptic plasticity that may contribute to prolonged excitatory tone necessary for generation of burst firing of magnocellular neurons.

  15. Glutamatergic neurotransmission modulation and the mechanisms of antipsychotic atypicality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heresco-Levy, Uriel

    2003-10-01

    The neurotransmission mediated by the excitatory amino acids (EAA) glutamate (GLU) and aspartate is of interest to the pharmacotherapy of psychosis due to its role in neurodevelopment and neurotoxicity, its complex interactions with dopaminergic and other neurotransmitter systems and its pivotal importance in recent models of schizophrenia. Accumulating evidence indicates that modulation of glutamatergic neurotransmission may play an important role in the mechanisms of action of atypical antipsychotic drugs. The principles of the phencyclidine (PCP) model of schizophrenia suggest that conventional neuroleptics cannot counteract all aspects of schizophrenia symptomatology, while a more favorable outcome, including anti-negative and cognitive symptoms effects, would be expected with the use of treatment modalities targeting glutamatergic neurotransmission. Clozapine and other presently used atypical antipsychotics differ from conventional neuroleptics in the way they affect various aspects of glutamatergic receptors function. In this context, a specific hypothesis suggesting an agonistic role of clozapine at the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) subtype of GLU receptors has been postulated. Furthermore, the results of the first generation of clinical trials with glycine (GLY) site agonists of the NMDA receptor in schizophrenia suggest that this type of compounds (1) have efficacy and side effects profiles different than those of conventional neuroleptics and (2) differ in their synergic effects when used in addition to conventional neuroleptics versus clozapine and possibly additional atypical antipsychotics. These findings (1) bring further support to the hypothesis that glutamatergic effects may play an important role in the mechanism of action of atypical antipsychotics, (2) help explain the unique clinical profile of clozapine, and (3) suggest that GLY site agonists of the NMDA receptor may represent a new class of atypical antipsychotic medication. Future research in

  16. Excitatory amino acids in epilepsy and potential novel therapies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meldrum, B S

    1992-07-01

    Evidence that an abnormality of excitatory neurotransmission may contribute to the epileptic phenomena in various animal and human syndromes is reviewed. Altered glutamate transport or metabolism may be a contributory factor in some genetic syndromes and enhanced responsiveness to activation of NMDA receptors may be significant in various acquired forms of epilepsy. Decreasing glutamatergic neurotransmission provides a rational therapeutic approach to epilepsy. Potent anticonvulsant effects are seen with the acute administration of NMDA antagonists in a wide range of animal models. Some competitive antagonists acting at the NMDA/glutamate site show prolonged anticonvulsant activity following oral administration at doses free of motor side effects and appear suitable for clinical trial.

  17. A Role for Excitatory Amino Acids in Diabetic Eye Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jose E. Pulido

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available Diabetic retinopathy is a leading cause of vision loss. The primary clinical hallmarks are vascular changes that appear to contribute to the loss of sight. In a number of neurodegenerative disorders there is an appreciation that increased levels of excitatory amino acids are excitotoxic. The primary amino acid responsible appears to be the neurotransmitter glutamate. This review examines the nature of glutamatergic signaling at the retina and the growing evidence from clinical and animal model studies that glutamate may be playing similar excitotoxic roles at the diabetic retina.

  18. Subregion-specific modulation of excitatory input and dopaminergic output in the striatum by tonically activated glycine and GABAA receptors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Louise eAdermark

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available The flow of cortical information through the basal ganglia is a complex spatiotemporal pattern of increased and decreased firing. The striatum is the biggest input nucleus to the basal ganglia and the aim of this study was to assess the role of inhibitory GABAA and glycine receptors in regulating synaptic activity in the dorsolateral (DLS and ventral striatum (nucleus accumbens, nAc. Local field potential recordings from coronal brain slices of juvenile and adult Wistar rats showed that GABAA receptors and strychnine-sensitive glycine receptors are tonically activated and inhibit excitatory input to the DLS and to the nAc. Strychnine-induced disinhibition of glutamatergic transmission was insensitive to the muscarinic receptor inhibitor scopolamine (10 µM, inhibited by the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor antagonist mecamylamine (10 µM and blocked by GABAA receptor inhibitors, suggesting that tonically activated glycine receptors depress excitatory input to the striatum through modulation of cholinergic and GABAergic neurotransmission. As an end-product example of striatal GABAergic output in vivo we measured dopamine release in the DLS and nAc by microdialysis in the awake and freely moving rat. Reversed dialysis of bicuculline (50 μM in perfusate only increased extrasynaptic dopamine levels in the nAc, while strychnine administered locally (200 μM in perfusate decreased dopamine output by 60% in both the DLS and nAc. Our data suggest that GABAA and glycine receptors are tonically activated and modulate striatal transmission in a partially sub-region specific manner.

  19. Cocaine Promotes Coincidence Detection and Lowers Induction Threshold during Hebbian Associative Synaptic Potentiation in Prefrontal Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruan, Hongyu; Yao, Wei-Dong

    2017-01-25

    Addictive drugs usurp neural plasticity mechanisms that normally serve reward-related learning and memory, primarily by evoking changes in glutamatergic synaptic strength in the mesocorticolimbic dopamine circuitry. Here, we show that repeated cocaine exposure in vivo does not alter synaptic strength in the mouse prefrontal cortex during an early period of withdrawal, but instead modifies a Hebbian quantitative synaptic learning rule by broadening the temporal window and lowers the induction threshold for spike-timing-dependent LTP (t-LTP). After repeated, but not single, daily cocaine injections, t-LTP in layer V pyramidal neurons is induced at +30 ms, a normally ineffective timing interval for t-LTP induction in saline-exposed mice. This cocaine-induced, extended-timing t-LTP lasts for ∼1 week after terminating cocaine and is accompanied by an increased susceptibility to potentiation by fewer pre-post spike pairs, indicating a reduced t-LTP induction threshold. Basal synaptic strength and the maximal attainable t-LTP magnitude remain unchanged after cocaine exposure. We further show that the cocaine facilitation of t-LTP induction is caused by sensitized D1-cAMP/protein kinase A dopamine signaling in pyramidal neurons, which then pathologically recruits voltage-gated l-type Ca 2+ channels that synergize with GluN2A-containing NMDA receptors to drive t-LTP at extended timing. Our results illustrate a mechanism by which cocaine, acting on a key neuromodulation pathway, modifies the coincidence detection window during Hebbian plasticity to facilitate associative synaptic potentiation in prefrontal excitatory circuits. By modifying rules that govern activity-dependent synaptic plasticity, addictive drugs can derail the experience-driven neural circuit remodeling process important for executive control of reward and addiction. It is believed that addictive drugs often render an addict's brain reward system hypersensitive, leaving the individual more susceptible to

  20. Morphine treatment enhances glutamatergic input onto neurons of the nucleus accumbens via both disinhibitory and stimulating effect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Kejing; Sheng, Huan; Song, Jiaojiao; Yang, Li; Cui, Dongyang; Ma, Qianqian; Zhang, Wen; Lai, Bin; Chen, Ming; Zheng, Ping

    2017-11-01

    Drug addiction is a chronic brain disorder characterized by the compulsive repeated use of drugs. The reinforcing effect of repeated use of drugs on reward plays an important role in morphine-induced addictive behaviors. The nucleus accumbens (NAc) is an important site where morphine treatment produces its reinforcing effect on reward. However, how morphine treatment produces its reinforcing effect on reward in the NAc remains to be clarified. In the present study, we studied the influence of morphine treatment on the effects of DA and observed whether morphine treatment could directly change glutamatergic synaptic transmission in the NAc. We also explored the functional significance of morphine-induced potentiation of glutamatergic synaptic transmission in the NAc at behavioral level. Our results show that (1) morphine treatment removes the inhibitory effect of DA on glutamatergic input onto NAc neurons; (2) morphine treatment potentiates glutamatergic input onto NAc neurons, especially the one from the basolateral amygdala (BLA) to the NAc; (3) blockade of glutamatergic synaptic transmission in the NAc or ablation of projection neurons from BLA to NAc significantly decreases morphine treatment-induced increase in locomotor activity. These results suggest that morphine treatment enhances glutamatergic input onto neurons of the NAc via both disinhibitory and stimulating effect and therefore increases locomotor activity. © 2016 Society for the Study of Addiction.

  1. Astroglial Metabolic Networks Sustain Hippocampal Synaptic Transmission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rouach, Nathalie; Koulakoff, Annette; Abudara, Veronica; Willecke, Klaus; Giaume, Christian

    2008-12-01

    Astrocytes provide metabolic substrates to neurons in an activity-dependent manner. However, the molecular mechanisms involved in this function, as well as its role in synaptic transmission, remain unclear. Here, we show that the gap-junction subunit proteins connexin 43 and 30 allow intercellular trafficking of glucose and its metabolites through astroglial networks. This trafficking is regulated by glutamatergic synaptic activity mediated by AMPA receptors. In the absence of extracellular glucose, the delivery of glucose or lactate to astrocytes sustains glutamatergic synaptic transmission and epileptiform activity only when they are connected by gap junctions. These results indicate that astroglial gap junctions provide an activity-dependent intercellular pathway for the delivery of energetic metabolites from blood vessels to distal neurons.

  2. Astroglial metabolic networks sustain hippocampal synaptic transmission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rouach, Nathalie; Koulakoff, Annette; Abudara, Veronica; Willecke, Klaus; Giaume, Christian

    2008-12-05

    Astrocytes provide metabolic substrates to neurons in an activity-dependent manner. However, the molecular mechanisms involved in this function, as well as its role in synaptic transmission, remain unclear. Here, we show that the gap-junction subunit proteins connexin 43 and 30 allow intercellular trafficking of glucose and its metabolites through astroglial networks. This trafficking is regulated by glutamatergic synaptic activity mediated by AMPA receptors. In the absence of extracellular glucose, the delivery of glucose or lactate to astrocytes sustains glutamatergic synaptic transmission and epileptiform activity only when they are connected by gap junctions. These results indicate that astroglial gap junctions provide an activity-dependent intercellular pathway for the delivery of energetic metabolites from blood vessels to distal neurons.

  3. Amygdalar glutamatergic neuronal systems play a key role on the hibernating state of hamsters

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Facciolo Rosa

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Excitatory transmitting mechanisms are proving to play a critical role on neuronal homeostasis conditions of facultative hibernators such as the Syrian golden hamster. Indeed works have shown that the glutamatergic system of the main olfactory brain station (amygdala is capable of controlling thermoregulatory responses, which are considered vital for the different hibernating states. In the present study the role of amygdalar glutamatergic circuits on non-hibernating (NHIB and hibernating (HIB hamsters were assessed on drinking stimuli and subsequently compared to expression variations of some glutamatergic subtype mRNA levels in limbic areas. For this study the two major glutamatergic antagonists and namely that of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR, 3-(+-2-carboxypiperazin-4-yl-propyl-1-phosphonate (CPP plus that of the acid α-amine-3-hydroxy-5-metil-4-isoxazol-propionic receptor (AMPAR site, cyano-7-nitro-quinoxaline-2,3-dione (CNQX were infused into the basolateral amygdala nucleus. Attempts were made to establish the type of effects evoked by amygdalar glutamatergic cross-talking processes during drinking stimuli, a response that may corroborate their major role at least during some stages of this physiological activity in hibernators. Results From the behavioral results it appears that the two glutamatergic compounds exerted distinct effects. In the first case local infusion of basolateral complexes (BLA with NMDAR antagonist caused very great (p Conclusion We conclude that predominant drinking events evoked by glutamatergic mechanisms, in the presence of prevalently down regulated levels of NR1/2A of some telencephalic and hypothalamic areas appear to constitute an important neuronal switch at least during arousal stage of hibernation. The establishment of the type of glutamatergic subtypes that are linked to successful hibernating states, via drinking stimuli, may have useful bearings toward sleeping disorders.

  4. Energy substrates to support glutamatergic and GABAergic synaptic function

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schousboe, Arne; Bak, Lasse K; Sickmann, Helle M

    2007-01-01

    under normal conditions is glucose but at the cellular level, i.e., neurons and astrocytes, lactate may play an important role as well. In addition to this the possibility exists that glycogen, which functions as a glucose storage molecule and which is only present in astrocytes, could play a role...

  5. pH modulation of glial glutamate transporters regulates synaptic transmission in the nucleus of the solitary tract

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCrimmon, Donald R.; Martina, Marco

    2013-01-01

    The nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS) is the major site for termination of visceral sensory afferents contributing to homeostatic regulation of, for example, arterial pressure, gastric motility, and breathing. Whereas much is known about how different neuronal populations influence these functions, information about the role of glia remains scant. In this article, we propose that glia may contribute to NTS functions by modulating excitatory neurotransmission. We found that acidification (pH 7.0) depolarizes NTS glia by inhibiting K+-selective membrane currents. NTS glia also showed functional expression of voltage-sensitive glutamate transporters, suggesting that extracellular acidification regulates synaptic transmission by compromising glial glutamate uptake. To test this hypothesis, we evoked glutamatergic slow excitatory potentials (SEPs) in NTS neurons with repetitive stimulation (20 pulses at 10 Hz) of the solitary tract. This SEP depends on accumulation of glutamate following repetitive stimulation, since it was potentiated by blocking glutamate uptake with dl-threo-β-benzyloxyaspartic acid (TBOA) or a glia-specific glutamate transport blocker, dihydrokainate (DHK). Importantly, extracellular acidification (pH 7.0) also potentiated the SEP. This effect appeared to be mediated through a depolarization-induced inhibition of glial transporter activity, because it was occluded by TBOA and DHK. In agreement, pH 7.0 did not directly alter d-aspartate-induced responses in NTS glia or properties of presynaptic glutamate release. Thus acidification-dependent regulation of glial function affects synaptic transmission within the NTS. These results suggest that glia play a modulatory role in the NTS by integrating local tissue signals (such as pH) with synaptic inputs from peripheral afferents. PMID:23615553

  6. Mechanism of Transport Modulation by an Extracellular Loop in an Archaeal Excitatory Amino Acid Transporter (EAAT) Homolog*

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mulligan, Christopher; Mindell, Joseph A.

    2013-01-01

    Secondary transporters in the excitatory amino acid transporter family terminate glutamatergic synaptic transmission by catalyzing Na+-dependent removal of glutamate from the synaptic cleft. Recent structural studies of the aspartate-specific archaeal homolog, GltPh, suggest that transport is achieved by a rigid body, piston-like movement of the transport domain, which houses the substrate-binding site, between the extracellular and cytoplasmic sides of the membrane. This transport domain is connected to an immobile scaffold by three loops, one of which, the 3–4 loop (3L4), undergoes substrate-sensitive conformational change. Proteolytic cleavage of the 3L4 was found to abolish transport activity indicating an essential function for this loop in the transport mechanism. Here, we demonstrate that despite the presence of fully cleaved 3L4, GltPh is still able to sample conformations relevant for transport. Optimized reconstitution conditions reveal that fully cleaved GltPh retains some transport activity. Analysis of the kinetics and temperature dependence of transport accompanied by direct measurements of substrate binding reveal that this decreased transport activity is not due to alteration of the substrate binding characteristics but is caused by the significantly reduced turnover rate. By measuring solute counterflow activity and cross-link formation rates, we demonstrate that cleaving 3L4 severely and specifically compromises one or more steps contributing to the movement of the substrate-loaded transport domain between the outward- and inward-facing conformational states, sparing the equivalent step(s) during the movement of the empty transport domain. These results reveal a hitherto unknown role for the 3L4 in modulating an essential step in the transport process. PMID:24155238

  7. Changes in hippocampal synaptic functions and protein expression in monosodium glutamate-treated obese mice during development of glucose intolerance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sasaki-Hamada, Sachie; Hojo, Yuki; Koyama, Hajime; Otsuka, Hayuma; Oka, Jun-Ichiro

    2015-05-01

    Glucose is the sole neural fuel for the brain and is essential for cognitive function. Abnormalities in glucose tolerance may be associated with impairments in cognitive function. Experimental obese model mice can be generated by an intraperitoneal injection of monosodium glutamate (MSG; 2 mg/g) once a day for 5 days from 1 day after birth. MSG-treated mice have been shown to develop glucose intolerance and exhibit chronic neuroendocrine dysfunction associated with marked cognitive malfunctions at 28-29  weeks old. Although hippocampal synaptic plasticity is impaired in MSG-treated mice, changes in synaptic transmission remain unknown. Here, we investigated whether glucose intolerance influenced cognitive function, synaptic properties and protein expression in the hippocampus. We demonstrated that MSG-treated mice developed glucose intolerance due to an impairment in the effectiveness of insulin actions, and showed cognitive impairments in the Y-maze test. Moreover, long-term potentiation (LTP) at Schaffer collateral-CA1 pyramidal synapses in hippocampal slices was impaired, and the relationship between the slope of extracellular field excitatory postsynaptic potential and stimulus intensity of synaptic transmission was weaker in MSG-treated mice. The protein levels of vesicular glutamate transporter 1 and GluA1 glutamate receptor subunits decreased in the CA1 region of MSG-treated mice. These results suggest that deficits in glutamatergic presynapses as well as postsynapses lead to impaired synaptic plasticity in MSG-treated mice during the development of glucose intolerance, though it remains unknown whether impaired LTP is due to altered inhibitory transmission. It may be important to examine changes in glucose tolerance in order to prevent cognitive malfunctions associated with diabetes. © 2015 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. 17β-Estradiol-Induced Synaptic Rearrangements Are Accompanied by Altered Ectonucleotidase Activities in Male Rat Hippocampal Synaptosomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitrović, Nataša; Zarić, Marina; Drakulić, Dunja; Martinović, Jelena; Sévigny, Jean; Stanojlović, Miloš; Nedeljković, Nadežda; Grković, Ivana

    2017-03-01

    17β-Estradiol (E2) rapidly, by binding to membrane estrogen receptors, activates cell signaling cascades which induce formation of new dendritic spines in the hippocampus of males as in females, but the interaction with other metabolic processes, such as extracellular adenine nucleotides metabolism, are currently unknown. Extracellular adenine nucleotides play significant roles, controlling excitatory glutamatergic synapses and development of neural circuits and synaptic plasticity. Their precise regulation in the synaptic cleft is tightly controlled by ecto-nucleoside triphosphate diphosphohydrolase (NTPDase)/ecto-5'-nucleotidase (eN) enzyme chain. Therefore, we sought to clarify whether a single systemic injection of E2 in male rats is accompanied by changes in the expression of the pre- and postsynaptic proteins and downstream kinases linked to E2-induced synaptic rearrangement as well as alterations in NTPDase/eN pathway in the hippocampal synaptosomes. Obtained data showed activation of mammalian target of rapamycin and upregulation of key synaptic proteins necessary for spine formation, 24 h after systemic E2 administration. In E2-mediated conditions, we found downregulation of NTPDase1 and NTPDase2 and attenuation of adenine nucleotide hydrolysis by NTPDase/eN enzyme chain, without changes in NTPDase3 properties and augmentation of synaptic tissue-nonspecific alkaline phosphatase (TNAP) activity. Despite reduced NTPDase activities, increased TNAP activity probably prevents toxic accumulation of ATP in the extracellular milieu and also hydrolyzes accumulated ADP due to unchanged NTPDase3 activity. Thus, our initial evaluation supports idea of specific roles of different ectonucleotidases and their coordinated actions in E2-mediated spine remodeling and maintenance.

  9. Anatomical and pharmacological characterization of excitatory amino acid receptors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Monaghan, D.T.

    1985-01-01

    The majority of the excitatory neurotransmission in the vertebrate Central Nervous System is thought to be mediated by acidic amino acid neurotransmitters. However, relatively little is known about the excitatory amino acid receptors and their distribution within the CNS. By analyzing radioligand binding to purified synaptic plasma membranes and to thin tissue sections processed for autoradiography, multiple distinct binding sites were found. These binding sites exhibited the pharmacological properties indicative of the excitatory amino acid receptors, which had been identified by electrophysiological techniques. Specifically, L-[ 3 H]-glutamate and D-[ 3 H]-amino-5-phosphonopentanoate appear to label N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors, L-[ 3 H]-glutamate and [ 3 H]-kainic acid appear to label kainic acid receptors, and L-[ 3 H]-glutamate and [ 3 H]-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionate appear to label quisqualate receptors. Together, these results confirm the three receptor scheme proposed for excitatory amino acid neurotransmission. These results also show that these transmitter-receptor systems are differentially distributed in the brain, and that the total distribution is consistent with that found by other markers for excitatory amino acid-using neurons

  10. Robust Synchronization in an E/I Network with Medium Synaptic Delay and High Level of Heterogeneity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Han Fang; Wang Zhi-Jie; Gong Tao; Fan Hong

    2015-01-01

    It is known that both excitatory and inhibitory neuronal networks can achieve robust synchronization only under certain conditions, such as long synaptic delay or low level of heterogeneity. In this work, robust synchronization can be found in an excitatory/inhibitory (E/I) neuronal network with medium synaptic delay and high level of heterogeneity, which often occurs in real neuronal networks. Two effects of post-synaptic potentials (PSP) to network synchronization are presented, and the synaptic contribution of excitatory and inhibitory neurons to robust synchronization in this E/I network is investigated. It is found that both excitatory and inhibitory neurons may contribute to robust synchronization in E/I networks, especially the excitatory PSP has a more positive effect on synchronization in E/I networks than that in excitatory networks. This may explain the strong robustness of synchronization in E/I neuronal networks. (paper)

  11. A pivotal role of GSK-3 in synaptic plasticity

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    Clarrisa A Bradley

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK-3 has many cellular functions. Recent evidence suggests that it plays a key role in certain types of synaptic plasticity, in particular a form of long-term depression (LTD that is induced by the synaptic activation of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA receptors. In the present article we summarise what is currently known concerning the roles of GSK-3 in synaptic plasticity at both glutamatergic and GABAergic synapses. We summarise its role in cognition and speculate on how alterations in the synaptic functioning of GSK-3 may be a major factor in certain neurodegenerative disorders.

  12. Functional Connectome Analysis of Dopamine Neuron Glutamatergic Connections in Forebrain Regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mingote, Susana; Chuhma, Nao; Kusnoor, Sheila V; Field, Bianca; Deutch, Ariel Y; Rayport, Stephen

    2015-12-09

    In the ventral tegmental area (VTA), a subpopulation of dopamine neurons express vesicular glutamate transporter 2 and make glutamatergic connections to nucleus accumbens (NAc) and olfactory tubercle (OT) neurons. However, their glutamatergic connections across the forebrain have not been explored systematically. To visualize dopamine neuron forebrain projections and to enable photostimulation of their axons independent of transmitter status, we virally transfected VTA neurons with channelrhodopsin-2 fused to enhanced yellow fluorescent protein (ChR2-EYFP) and used DAT(IREScre) mice to restrict expression to dopamine neurons. ChR2-EYFP-expressing neurons almost invariably stained for tyrosine hydroxylase, identifying them as dopaminergic. Dopamine neuron axons visualized by ChR2-EYFP fluorescence projected most densely to the striatum, moderately to the amygdala and entorhinal cortex (ERC), sparsely to prefrontal and cingulate cortices, and rarely to the hippocampus. Guided by ChR2-EYFP fluorescence, we recorded systematically from putative principal neurons in target areas and determined the incidence and strength of glutamatergic connections by activating all dopamine neuron terminals impinging on recorded neurons with wide-field photostimulation. This revealed strong glutamatergic connections in the NAc, OT, and ERC; moderate strength connections in the central amygdala; and weak connections in the cingulate cortex. No glutamatergic connections were found in the dorsal striatum, hippocampus, basolateral amygdala, or prefrontal cortex. These results indicate that VTA dopamine neurons elicit widespread, but regionally distinct, glutamatergic signals in the forebrain and begin to define the dopamine neuron excitatory functional connectome. Dopamine neurons are important for the control of motivated behavior and are involved in the pathophysiology of several major neuropsychiatric disorders. Recent studies have shown that some ventral midbrain dopamine neurons are

  13. mGluR5 ablation in cortical glutamatergic neurons increases novelty-induced locomotion.

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    Chris P Jew

    Full Text Available The group I metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 (mGluR5 has been implicated in the pathology of various neurological disorders including schizophrenia, ADHD, and autism. mGluR5-dependent synaptic plasticity has been described at a variety of neural connections and its signaling has been implicated in several behaviors. These behaviors include locomotor reactivity to novel environment, sensorimotor gating, anxiety, and cognition. mGluR5 is expressed in glutamatergic neurons, inhibitory neurons, and glia in various brain regions. In this study, we show that deleting mGluR5 expression only in principal cortical neurons leads to defective cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1R dependent synaptic plasticity in the prefrontal cortex. These cortical glutamatergic mGluR5 knockout mice exhibit increased novelty-induced locomotion, and their locomotion can be further enhanced by treatment with the psychostimulant methylphenidate. Despite a modest reduction in repetitive behaviors, cortical glutamatergic mGluR5 knockout mice are normal in sensorimotor gating, anxiety, motor balance/learning and fear conditioning behaviors. These results show that mGluR5 signaling in cortical glutamatergic neurons is required for precisely modulating locomotor reactivity to a novel environment but not for sensorimotor gating, anxiety, motor coordination, several forms of learning or social interactions.

  14. Voluntary nicotine consumption triggers in vivo potentiation of cortical excitatory drives to midbrain dopaminergic neurons

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Caillé, S.; Guillem, K.; Cador, M.; Manzoni, O.; Georges, F.

    2009-01-01

    Active response to either natural or pharmacological reward causes synaptic modifications to excitatory synapses on dopamine (DA) neurons of the ventral tegmental area (VTA). Here, we examine these modifications using nicotine, the main addictive component of tobacco, which is a potent regulator of

  15. Plasticity-Related Gene 1 Affects Mouse Barrel Cortex Function via Strengthening of Glutamatergic Thalamocortical Transmission

    OpenAIRE

    Unichenko, Petr; Kirischuk, Sergei; Yang, Jenq-Wei; Baumgart, Jan; Roskoden, Thomas; Schneider, Patrick; Sommer, Angela; Horta, Guilherme; Radyushkin, Konstantin; Nitsch, Robert; Vogt, Johannes; Luhmann, Heiko J.

    2016-01-01

    Plasticity-related gene-1 (PRG-1) is a brain-specific protein that modulates glutamatergic synaptic transmission. Here we investigated the functional role of PRG-1 in adolescent and adult mouse barrel cortex both in vitro and in vivo. Compared with wild-type (WT) animals, PRG-1-deficient (KO) mice showed specific behavioral deficits in tests assessing sensorimotor integration and whisker-based sensory discrimination as shown in the beam balance/walking test and sandpaper tactile discriminatio...

  16. Genetic controls balancing excitatory and inhibitory synaptogenesis in neurodevelopmental disorder models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cheryl L Gatto

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Proper brain function requires stringent balance of excitatory and inhibitory synapse formation during neural circuit assembly. Mutation of genes that normally sculpt and maintain this balance results in severe dysfunction, causing neurodevelopmental disorders including autism, epilepsy and Rett syndrome. Such mutations may result in defective architectural structuring of synaptic connections, molecular assembly of synapses and/or functional synaptogenesis. The affected genes often encode synaptic components directly, but also include regulators that secondarily mediate the synthesis or assembly of synaptic proteins. The prime example is Fragile X syndrome (FXS, the leading heritable cause of both intellectual disability and autism spectrum disorders. FXS results from loss of mRNA-binding FMRP, which regulates synaptic transcript trafficking, stability and translation in activity-dependent synaptogenesis and plasticity mechanisms. Genetic models of FXS exhibit striking excitatory and inhibitory synapse imbalance, associated with impaired cognitive and social interaction behaviors. Downstream of translation control, a number of specific synaptic proteins regulate excitatory versus inhibitory synaptogenesis, independently or combinatorially, and loss of these proteins is also linked to disrupted neurodevelopment. The current effort is to define the cascade of events linking transcription, translation and the role of specific synaptic proteins in the maintenance of excitatory versus inhibitory synapses during neural circuit formation. This focus includes mechanisms that fine-tune excitation and inhibition during the refinement of functional synaptic circuits, and later modulate this balance throughout life. The use of powerful new genetic models has begun to shed light on the mechanistic bases of excitation/inhibition imbalance for a range of neurodevelopmental disease states.

  17. Reversal of Cocaine-Associated Synaptic Plasticity in Medial Prefrontal Cortex Parallels Elimination of Memory Retrieval.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Otis, James M; Mueller, Devin

    2017-09-01

    Addiction is characterized by abnormalities in prefrontal cortex that are thought to allow drug-associated cues to drive compulsive drug seeking and taking. Identification and reversal of these pathologic neuroadaptations are therefore critical for treatment of addiction. Previous studies using rodents reveal that drugs of abuse cause dendritic spine plasticity in prelimbic medial prefrontal cortex (PL-mPFC) pyramidal neurons, a phenomenon that correlates with the strength of drug-associated memories in vivo. Thus, we hypothesized that cocaine-evoked plasticity in PL-mPFC may underlie cocaine-associated memory retrieval, and therefore disruption of this plasticity would prevent retrieval. Indeed, using patch clamp electrophysiology we find that cocaine place conditioning increases excitatory presynaptic and postsynaptic transmission in rat PL-mPFC pyramidal neurons. This was accounted for by increases in excitatory presynaptic release, paired-pulse facilitation, and increased AMPA receptor transmission. Noradrenergic signaling is known to maintain glutamatergic plasticity upon reactivation of modified circuits, and we therefore next determined whether inhibition of noradrenergic signaling during memory reactivation would reverse the cocaine-evoked plasticity and/or disrupt the cocaine-associated memory. We find that administration of the β-adrenergic receptor antagonist propranolol before memory retrieval, but not after (during memory reconsolidation), reverses the cocaine-evoked presynaptic and postsynaptic modifications in PL-mPFC and causes long-lasting memory impairments. Taken together, these data reveal that cocaine-evoked synaptic plasticity in PL-mPFC is reversible in vivo, and suggest a novel strategy that would allow normalization of prefrontal circuitry in addiction.

  18. An Exploratory Study of Spectroscopic Glutamatergic Correlates of Cortical Excitability in Depressed Adolescents

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    Charles P. Lewis

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS research has suggested dysfunction in cortical glutamatergic systems in depression, while proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H-MRS studies have demonstrated deficits in concentrations of glutamatergic metabolites in depressed individuals in several cortical regions, including the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC. However, few studies have combined TMS and MRS methods to examine relationships between glutamatergic neurochemistry and excitatory and inhibitory neural functions, and none have utilized TMS-MRS methodology in clinical populations or in youth. This exploratory study aimed to examine relationships between TMS measures of cortical excitability and inhibition and concentrations of glutamatergic metabolites as measured by 1H-MRS in depressed adolescents. Methods: Twenty-four children and adolescents (aged 11-18 years with depressive symptoms underwent TMS testing, which included measures of the resting motor threshold (RMT, cortical silent period (CSP, short-interval intracortical inhibition (SICI, and intracortical facilitation (ICF. Fourteen participants from the same sample also completed 1H-MRS in a 3 T MRI scanner after TMS testing. Glutamate + glutamine (Glx concentrations were measured in medial ACC and left primary motor cortex voxels with a TE-optimized PRESS sequence. Metabolite concentrations were corrected for cerebrospinal fluid after tissue segmentation. Pearson product-moment and Spearman rank-order correlations were calculated to assess relationships between TMS measures and Glx. Results: In the left primary motor cortex voxel, Glx had a significant positive correlation with the RMT. In the medial ACC voxel, Glx had significant positive correlations with ICF at the 10-ms and 20-ms ISIs.Conclusions: These preliminary data implicate glutamate in cortical excitatory processes measured by TMS. Limitations included small sample size, lack of healthy control comparators

  19. Synaptic glutamate release by postnatal rat serotonergic neurons in microculture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, M D

    1994-02-01

    Serotonergic neurons are thought to play a role in depression and obsessive compulsive disorder. However, their functional transmitter repertoire is incompletely known. To investigate this repertoire, intracellular recordings were obtained from 132 cytochemically identified rat mesopontine serotonergic neurons that had re-established synapses in microcultures. Approximately 60% of the neurons evoked excitatory glutamatergic potentials in themselves or in target neurons. Glutamatergic transmission was frequently observed in microcultures containing a solitary serotonergic neuron. Evidence for co-release of serotonin and glutamate from single raphe neurons was also obtained. However, evidence for gamma-aminobutyric acid release by serotonergic neurons was observed in only two cases. These findings indicate that many cultured serotonergic neurons form glutamatergic synapses and may explain several observations in slices and in vivo.

  20. Effect of calcium on excitatory neuromuscular transmission in the crayfish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bracho, H.; Orkand, R. K.

    1970-01-01

    1. The effects of varying the external Ca concentration from 1·8 to 30 mM/l. (⅛-2 times normal) have been studied at the in vitro crayfish excitatory neuromuscular junction. Electrophysiological techniques were used to record transmembrane junctional potentials from muscle fibres and extracellular junctional currents from the vicinity of nerve terminals. 2. The excitatory junctional potential amplitude was proportional to [Ca]0n, where n varied between 0·68 and 0·94 (mean 0·82) when [Ca]0 was varied from 1·8 to 15 mM/l. 3. The increase in junctional potential amplitude on raising [Ca]0 resulted primarily from an increase in the average number of quanta of excitatory transmitter released from the presynaptic nerve terminal by the nerve impulse. 4. The size of the quanta, synaptic delay, presynaptic potential and electrical properties of the muscle membrane were little affected by changes in calcium concentration in the range studied. PMID:5498460

  1. Enhanced pre-synaptic glutamate release in deep-dorsal horn contributes to calcium channel alpha-2-delta-1 protein-mediated spinal sensitization and behavioral hypersensitivity

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    Dickenson Anthony H

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Nerve injury-induced expression of the spinal calcium channel alpha-2-delta-1 subunit (Cavα2δ1 has been shown to mediate behavioral hypersensitivity through a yet identified mechanism. We examined if this neuroplasticity modulates behavioral hypersensitivity by regulating spinal glutamatergic neurotransmission in injury-free transgenic mice overexpressing the Cavα2δ1 proteins in neuronal tissues. The transgenic mice exhibited hypersensitivity to mechanical stimulation (allodynia similar to the spinal nerve ligation injury model. Intrathecally delivered antagonists for N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA and α-amino-3-hydroxyl-5-methylisoxazole-4-propionic acid (AMPA/kainate receptors, but not for the metabotropic glutamate receptors, caused a dose-dependent allodynia reversal in the transgenic mice without changing the behavioral sensitivity in wild-type mice. This suggests that elevated spinal Cavα2δ1 mediates allodynia through a pathway involving activation of selective glutamate receptors. To determine if this is mediated by enhanced spinal neuronal excitability or pre-synaptic glutamate release in deep-dorsal horn, we examined wide-dynamic-range (WDR neuron excitability with extracellular recording and glutamate-mediated excitatory postsynaptic currents with whole-cell patch recording in deep-dorsal horn of the Cavα2δ1 transgenic mice. Our data indicated that overexpression of Cavα2δ1 in neuronal tissues led to increased frequency, but not amplitude, of miniature excitatory post synaptic currents mediated mainly by AMPA/kainate receptors at physiological membrane potentials, and also by NMDA receptors upon depolarization, without changing the excitability of WDR neurons to high intensity stimulation. Together, these findings support a mechanism of Cavα2δ1-mediated spinal sensitization in which elevated Cavα2δ1 causes increased pre-synaptic glutamate release that leads to reduced excitation thresholds of post-synaptic dorsal

  2. Enhanced pre-synaptic glutamate release in deep-dorsal horn contributes to calcium channel alpha-2-delta-1 protein-mediated spinal sensitization and behavioral hypersensitivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, David; Deng, Ping; Matthews, Elizabeth A; Kim, Doo-Sik; Feng, Guoping; Dickenson, Anthony H; Xu, Zao C; Luo, Z David

    2009-01-01

    Nerve injury-induced expression of the spinal calcium channel alpha-2-delta-1 subunit (Cavα2δ1) has been shown to mediate behavioral hypersensitivity through a yet identified mechanism. We examined if this neuroplasticity modulates behavioral hypersensitivity by regulating spinal glutamatergic neurotransmission in injury-free transgenic mice overexpressing the Cavα2δ1 proteins in neuronal tissues. The transgenic mice exhibited hypersensitivity to mechanical stimulation (allodynia) similar to the spinal nerve ligation injury model. Intrathecally delivered antagonists for N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) and α-amino-3-hydroxyl-5-methylisoxazole-4-propionic acid (AMPA)/kainate receptors, but not for the metabotropic glutamate receptors, caused a dose-dependent allodynia reversal in the transgenic mice without changing the behavioral sensitivity in wild-type mice. This suggests that elevated spinal Cavα2δ1 mediates allodynia through a pathway involving activation of selective glutamate receptors. To determine if this is mediated by enhanced spinal neuronal excitability or pre-synaptic glutamate release in deep-dorsal horn, we examined wide-dynamic-range (WDR) neuron excitability with extracellular recording and glutamate-mediated excitatory postsynaptic currents with whole-cell patch recording in deep-dorsal horn of the Cavα2δ1 transgenic mice. Our data indicated that overexpression of Cavα2δ1 in neuronal tissues led to increased frequency, but not amplitude, of miniature excitatory post synaptic currents mediated mainly by AMPA/kainate receptors at physiological membrane potentials, and also by NMDA receptors upon depolarization, without changing the excitability of WDR neurons to high intensity stimulation. Together, these findings support a mechanism of Cavα2δ1-mediated spinal sensitization in which elevated Cavα2δ1 causes increased pre-synaptic glutamate release that leads to reduced excitation thresholds of post-synaptic dorsal horn neurons to innocuous

  3. The importance of the excitatory amino acid transporter 3 (EAAT3)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    E. Bjørn-Yoshimoto, Walden; Underhill, Suzanne M.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The neuronal excitatory amino acid transporter 3 (EAAT3) is fairly ubiquitously expressed in the brain, though it does not necessarily maintain the same function everywhere. It is important in maintaining low local concentrations of glutamate, where its predominant post-synaptic localiza......Abstract The neuronal excitatory amino acid transporter 3 (EAAT3) is fairly ubiquitously expressed in the brain, though it does not necessarily maintain the same function everywhere. It is important in maintaining low local concentrations of glutamate, where its predominant post...

  4. Dexmedetomidine decreases inhibitory but not excitatory neurotransmission to cardiac vagal neurons in the nucleus ambiguus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharp, Douglas B; Wang, Xin; Mendelowitz, David

    2014-07-29

    Dexmedetomidine, an α2 adrenergic agonist, is a useful sedative but can also cause significant bradycardia. This decrease in heart rate may be due to decreased central sympathetic output as well as increased parasympathetic output from brainstem cardiac vagal neurons. In this study, using whole cell voltage clamp methodology, the actions of dexmedetomidine on excitatory glutamatergic and inhibitory GABAergic and glycinergic neurotransmission to parasympathetic cardiac vagal neurons in the rat nucleus ambiguus was determined. The results indicate that dexmedetomidine decreases both GABAergic and glycinergic inhibitory input to cardiac vagal neurons, with no significant effect on excitatory input. These results provide a mechanism for dexmedetomidine induced bradycardia and has implications for the management of this potentially harmful side effect. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. LRRTM3 Regulates Excitatory Synapse Development through Alternative Splicing and Neurexin Binding

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    Ji Won Um

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The four members of the LRRTM family (LRRTM1-4 are postsynaptic adhesion molecules essential for excitatory synapse development. They have also been implicated in neuropsychiatric diseases. Here, we focus on LRRTM3, showing that two distinct LRRTM3 variants generated by alternative splicing regulate LRRTM3 interaction with PSD-95, but not its excitatory synapse-promoting activity. Overexpression of either LRRTM3 variant increased excitatory synapse density in dentate gyrus (DG granule neurons, whereas LRRTM3 knockdown decreased it. LRRTM3 also controlled activity-regulated AMPA receptor surface expression in an alternative splicing-dependent manner. Furthermore, Lrrtm3-knockout mice displayed specific alterations in excitatory synapse density, excitatory synaptic transmission and excitability in DG granule neurons but not in CA1 pyramidal neurons. Lastly, LRRTM3 required only specific splice variants of presynaptic neurexins for their synaptogenic activity. Collectively, our data highlight alternative splicing and differential presynaptic ligand utilization in the regulation of LRRTMs, revealing key regulatory mechanisms for excitatory synapse development.

  6. SynGAP regulates protein synthesis and homeostatic synaptic plasticity in developing cortical networks.

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    Chih-Chieh Wang

    Full Text Available Disrupting the balance between excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmission in the developing brain has been causally linked with intellectual disability (ID and autism spectrum disorders (ASD. Excitatory synapse strength is regulated in the central nervous system by controlling the number of postsynaptic α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptors (AMPARs. De novo genetic mutations of the synaptic GTPase-activating protein (SynGAP are associated with ID and ASD. SynGAP is enriched at excitatory synapses and genetic suppression of SynGAP increases excitatory synaptic strength. However, exactly how SynGAP acts to maintain synaptic AMPAR content is unclear. We show here that SynGAP limits excitatory synaptic strength, in part, by suppressing protein synthesis in cortical neurons. The data presented here from in vitro, rat and mouse cortical networks, demonstrate that regulation of translation by SynGAP involves ERK, mTOR, and the small GTP-binding protein Rheb. Furthermore, these data show that GluN2B-containing NMDARs and the cognitive kinase CaMKII act upstream of SynGAP and that this signaling cascade is required for proper translation-dependent homeostatic synaptic plasticity of excitatory synapses in developing cortical networks.

  7. Alteration of synaptic connectivity of oligodendrocyte precursor cells following demyelination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sahel, Aurélia; Ortiz, Fernando C.; Kerninon, Christophe; Maldonado, Paloma P.; Angulo, María Cecilia; Nait-Oumesmar, Brahim

    2015-01-01

    Oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs) are a major source of remyelinating oligodendrocytes in demyelinating diseases such as Multiple Sclerosis (MS). While OPCs are innervated by unmyelinated axons in the normal brain, the fate of such synaptic contacts after demyelination is still unclear. By combining electrophysiology and immunostainings in different transgenic mice expressing fluorescent reporters, we studied the synaptic innervation of OPCs in the model of lysolecithin (LPC)-induced demyelination of corpus callosum. Synaptic innervation of reactivated OPCs in the lesion was revealed by the presence of AMPA receptor-mediated synaptic currents, VGluT1+ axon-OPC contacts in 3D confocal reconstructions and synaptic junctions observed by electron microscopy. Moreover, 3D confocal reconstructions of VGluT1 and NG2 immunolabeling showed the existence of glutamatergic axon-OPC contacts in post-mortem MS lesions. Interestingly, patch-clamp recordings in LPC-induced lesions demonstrated a drastic decrease in spontaneous synaptic activity of OPCs early after demyelination that was not caused by an impaired conduction of compound action potentials. A reduction in synaptic connectivity was confirmed by the lack of VGluT1+ axon-OPC contacts in virtually all rapidly proliferating OPCs stained with EdU (50-ethynyl-20-deoxyuridine). At the end of the massive proliferation phase in lesions, the proportion of innervated OPCs rapidly recovers, although the frequency of spontaneous synaptic currents did not reach control levels. In conclusion, our results demonstrate that newly-generated OPCs do not receive synaptic inputs during their active proliferation after demyelination, but gain synapses during the remyelination process. Hence, glutamatergic synaptic inputs may contribute to inhibit OPC proliferation and might have a physiopathological relevance in demyelinating disorders. PMID:25852473

  8. Pathological glutamatergic neurotransmission in Gilles de la Tourette syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanaan, Ahmad Seif; Gerasch, Sarah; García-García, Isabel; Lampe, Leonie; Pampel, André; Anwander, Alfred; Near, Jamie; Möller, Harald E; Müller-Vahl, Kirsten

    2017-01-01

    Gilles de la Tourette syndrome is a hereditary, neuropsychiatric movement disorder with reported abnormalities in the neurotransmission of dopamine and γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA). Spatially focalized alterations in excitatory, inhibitory and modulatory neurochemical ratios within specific functional subdivisions of the basal ganglia, may lead to the expression of diverse motor and non-motor features as manifested in Gilles de la Tourette syndrome. Current treatment strategies are often unsatisfactory thus provoking the need for further elucidation of the underlying pathophysiology. In view of (i) the close spatio-temporal synergy exhibited between excitatory, inhibitory and modulatory neurotransmitter systems; (ii) the crucial role played by glutamate (Glu) in tonic/phasic dopaminergic signalling; and (iii) the interdependent metabolic relationship exhibited between Glu and GABA via glutamine (Gln); we postulated that glutamatergic signalling is related to the pathophysiology of Gilles de la Tourette syndrome. As such, we examined the neurochemical profile of three cortico-striato-thalamo-cortical regions in 37 well-characterized, drug-free adult patients and 36 age/gender-matched healthy control subjects via magnetic resonance spectroscopy at 3 T. To interrogate the influence of treatment on metabolite concentrations, spectral data were acquired from 15 patients undergoing a 4-week treatment with aripiprazole. Test-retest reliability measurements in 23 controls indicated high repeatability of voxel localization and metabolite quantitation. We report significant reductions in striatal concentrations of Gln, Glu + Gln (Glx) and the Gln:Glu ratio, and thalamic concentrations of Glx in Gilles de la Tourette syndrome in comparison to controls. ON-treatment patients exhibited no significant metabolite differences when compared to controls but significant increases in striatal Glu and Glx, and trends for increases in striatal Gln and thalamic Glx compared to baseline

  9. Tlx3 promotes glutamatergic neuronal subtype specification through direct interactions with the chromatin modifier CBP.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Atsushi Shimomura

    Full Text Available Nervous system development relies on the generation of precise numbers of excitatory and inhibitory neurons. The homeodomain transcription factor, T-cell leukemia 3 (Tlx3, functions as the master neuronal fate regulator by instructively promoting the specification of glutamatergic excitatory neurons and suppressing the specification of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABAergic neurons. However, how Tlx3 promotes glutamatergic neuronal subtype specification is poorly understood. In this study, we found that Tlx3 directly interacts with the epigenetic co-activator cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP-response element-binding protein (CREB-binding protein (CBP and that the Tlx3 homeodomain is essential for this interaction. The interaction between Tlx3 and CBP was enhanced by the three amino acid loop extension (TALE-class homeodomain transcription factor, pre-B-cell leukemia transcription factor 3 (Pbx3. Using mouse embryonic stem (ES cells stably expressing Tlx3, we found that the interaction between Tlx3 and CBP became detectable only after these Tlx3-expressing ES cells were committed to a neural lineage, which coincided with increased Pbx3 expression during neural differentiation from ES cells. Forced expression of mutated Tlx3 lacking the homeodomain in ES cells undergoing neural differentiation resulted in significantly reduced expression of glutamatergic neuronal subtype markers, but had little effect on the expression on pan neural markers. Collectively, our results strongly suggest that functional interplay between Tlx3 and CBP plays a critical role in neuronal subtype specification, providing novel insights into the epigenetic regulatory mechanism that modulates the transcriptional efficacy of a selective set of neuronal subtype-specific genes during differentiation.

  10. Differential effects of ethanol on regional glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmitter pathways in mouse brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tiwari, Vivek; Veeraiah, Pandichelvam; Subramaniam, Vaidyanathan; Patel, Anant Bahadur

    2014-03-01

    This study investigates the effects of ethanol on neuronal and astroglial metabolism using (1)H-[(13)C]-NMR spectroscopy in conjunction with infusion of [1,6-(13)C2]/[1-(13)C]glucose or [2-(13)C]acetate, respectively. A three-compartment metabolic model was fitted to the (13)C turnover of GluC3 , GluC4, GABAC 2, GABAC 3, AspC3 , and GlnC4 from [1,6-(13)C2 ]glucose to determine the rates of tricarboxylic acid (TCA) and neurotransmitter cycle associated with glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons. The ratio of neurotransmitter cycle to TCA cycle fluxes for glutamatergic and GABAegic neurons was obtained from the steady-state [2-(13)C]acetate experiment and used as constraints during the metabolic model fitting. (1)H MRS measurement suggests that depletion of ethanol from cerebral cortex follows zero order kinetics with rate 0.18 ± 0.04 μmol/g/min. Acute exposure of ethanol reduces the level of glutamate and aspartate in cortical region. GlnC4 labeling was found to be unchanged from a 15 min infusion of [2-(13)C]acetate suggesting that acute ethanol exposure does not affect astroglial metabolism in naive mice. Rates of TCA and neurotransmitter cycle associated with glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons were found to be significantly reduced in cortical and subcortical regions. Acute exposure of ethanol perturbs the level of neurometabolites and decreases the excitatory and inhibitory activity differentially across the regions of brain. Depletion of ethanol and its effect on brain functions were measured using (1)H and (1)H-[(13)C]-NMR spectroscopy in conjunction with infusion of (13)C-labeled substrates. Ethanol depletion from brain follows zero order kinetics. Ethanol perturbs level of glutamate, and the excitatory and inhibitory activity in mice brain. © 2013 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  11. Effects of Neuromodulation on Excitatory-Inhibitory Neural Network Dynamics Depend on Network Connectivity Structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rich, Scott; Zochowski, Michal; Booth, Victoria

    2018-01-01

    Acetylcholine (ACh), one of the brain's most potent neuromodulators, can affect intrinsic neuron properties through blockade of an M-type potassium current. The effect of ACh on excitatory and inhibitory cells with this potassium channel modulates their membrane excitability, which in turn affects their tendency to synchronize in networks. Here, we study the resulting changes in dynamics in networks with inter-connected excitatory and inhibitory populations (E-I networks), which are ubiquitous in the brain. Utilizing biophysical models of E-I networks, we analyze how the network connectivity structure in terms of synaptic connectivity alters the influence of ACh on the generation of synchronous excitatory bursting. We investigate networks containing all combinations of excitatory and inhibitory cells with high (Type I properties) or low (Type II properties) modulatory tone. To vary network connectivity structure, we focus on the effects of the strengths of inter-connections between excitatory and inhibitory cells (E-I synapses and I-E synapses), and the strengths of intra-connections among excitatory cells (E-E synapses) and among inhibitory cells (I-I synapses). We show that the presence of ACh may or may not affect the generation of network synchrony depending on the network connectivity. Specifically, strong network inter-connectivity induces synchronous excitatory bursting regardless of the cellular propensity for synchronization, which aligns with predictions of the PING model. However, when a network's intra-connectivity dominates its inter-connectivity, the propensity for synchrony of either inhibitory or excitatory cells can determine the generation of network-wide bursting.

  12. 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.

  13. Inhibitory Synaptic Plasticity - Spike timing dependence and putative network function.

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    Tim P Vogels

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available While the plasticity of excitatory synaptic connections in the brain has been widely studied, the plasticity of inhibitory connections is much less understood. Here, we present recent experimental and theoretical □ndings concerning the rules of spike timing-dependent inhibitory plasticity and their putative network function. This is a summary of a workshop at the COSYNE conference 2012.

  14. Enhanced excitatory input to MCH neurons during developmental period of high food intake is mediated by GABA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ying; van den Pol, Anthony N.

    2010-01-01

    In contrast to the local axons of GABA neurons of the cortex and hippocampus, lateral hypothalamic neurons containing melanin concentrating hormone (MCH) and GABA send long axons throughout the brain and play key roles in energy homeostasis and mental status. In adults, MCH neurons maintain a hyperpolarized membrane potential and most of the synaptic input is inhibitory. In contrast, we found that developing MCH neurons received substantially more excitatory synaptic input. Based on gramicidicin-perforated patch recordings in hypothalamic slices from MCH-GFP transgenic mice, we found that GABA was the primary excitatory synaptic transmitter in embryonic and neonatal ages up to postnatal day 10. Surprisingly, glutamate assumed only a minor excitatory role, if any. GABA plays a complex role in developing MCH neurons, with its actions conditionally dependent on a number of factors. GABA depolarization could lead to an increase in spikes either independently or in summation with other depolarizing stimuli, or alternately, depending on the relative timing of other depolarizing events, could lead to shunting inhibition. The developmental shift from depolarizing to hyperpolarizing occurred later in the dendrites than in the cell body. Early GABA depolarization was based on a Cl− dependent inward current. An interesting secondary depolarization in mature neurons that followed an initial hyperpolarization was based on a bicarbonate mechanism. Thus during the early developmental period when food consumption is high, MCH neurons are more depolarized than in the adult, and an increased level of excitatory synaptic input to these orexigenic cells is mediated by GABA. PMID:19955372

  15. Enhanced excitatory input to melanin concentrating hormone neurons during developmental period of high food intake is mediated by GABA.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ying; van den Pol, Anthony N

    2009-12-02

    In contrast to the local axons of GABA neurons of the cortex and hippocampus, lateral hypothalamic neurons containing melanin concentrating hormone (MCH) and GABA send long axons throughout the brain and play key roles in energy homeostasis and mental status. In adults, MCH neurons maintain a hyperpolarized membrane potential and most of the synaptic input is inhibitory. In contrast, we found that developing MCH neurons received substantially more excitatory synaptic input. Based on gramicidin-perforated patch recordings in hypothalamic slices from MCH-green fluorescent protein transgenic mice, we found that GABA was the primary excitatory synaptic transmitter in embryonic and neonatal ages up to postnatal day 10. Surprisingly, glutamate assumed only a minor excitatory role, if any. GABA plays a complex role in developing MCH neurons, with its actions conditionally dependent on a number of factors. GABA depolarization could lead to an increase in spikes either independently or in summation with other depolarizing stimuli, or alternately, depending on the relative timing of other depolarizing events, could lead to shunting inhibition. The developmental shift from depolarizing to hyperpolarizing occurred later in the dendrites than in the cell body. Early GABA depolarization was based on a Cl(-)-dependent inward current. An interesting secondary depolarization in mature neurons that followed an initial hyperpolarization was based on a bicarbonate mechanism. Thus during the early developmental period when food consumption is high, MCH neurons are more depolarized than in the adult, and an increased level of excitatory synaptic input to these orexigenic cells is mediated by GABA.

  16. Synaptic Cell Adhesion

    OpenAIRE

    Missler, Markus; Südhof, Thomas C.; Biederer, Thomas

    2012-01-01

    Chemical synapses are asymmetric intercellular junctions that mediate synaptic transmission. Synaptic junctions are organized by trans-synaptic cell adhesion molecules bridging the synaptic cleft. Synaptic cell adhesion molecules not only connect pre- and postsynaptic compartments, but also mediate trans-synaptic recognition and signaling processes that are essential for the establishment, specification, and plasticity of synapses. A growing number of synaptic cell adhesion molecules that inc...

  17. Amyloid precursor protein overexpression depresses excitatory transmission through both presynaptic and postsynaptic mechanisms

    OpenAIRE

    Ting, Jonathan T.; Kelley, Brooke G.; Lambert, Talley J.; Cook, David G.; Sullivan, Jane M.

    2006-01-01

    Overexpression of the amyloid precursor protein (APP) in hippocampal neurons leads to elevated β-amyloid peptide (Aβ) production and consequent depression of excitatory transmission. The precise mechanisms underlying APP-induced synaptic depression are poorly understood. Uncovering these mechanisms could provide insight into how neuronal function is compromised before cell death during the early stages of Alzheimer's disease. Here we verify that APP up-regulation leads to depression of transm...

  18. Electric Dipole Theory of Chemical Synaptic Transmission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Ling Y.

    1968-01-01

    In this paper we propose that chemicals such as acetylcholine are electric dipoles which when oriented and arranged in a large array could produce an electric field strong enough to drive positive ions over the junction barrier of the post-synaptic membrane and thus initiate excitation or produce depolarization. This theory is able to explain a great number of facts such as cleft size, synaptic delay, nonregeneration, subthreshold integration, facilitation with repetition, and the calcium and magnesium effects. It also shows why and how acetylcholine could act as excitatory or inhibitory transmitters under different circumstances. Our conclusion is that the nature of synaptic transmission is essentially electrical, be it mediated by electrical or chemical transmitters. PMID:4296121

  19. Characterization of Glutamatergic Neurons in the Rat Atrial Intrinsic Cardiac Ganglia that Project to the Cardiac Ventricular Wall

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Ting; Miller, Kenneth E.

    2016-01-01

    The intrinsic cardiac nervous system modulates cardiac function by acting as an integration site for regulating autonomic efferent cardiac output. This intrinsic system is proposed to be composed of a short cardio-cardiac feedback control loop within the cardiac innervation hierarchy. For example, electrophysiological studies have postulated the presence of sensory neurons in intrinsic cardiac ganglia for regional cardiac control. There is still a knowledge gap, however, about the anatomical location and neurochemical phenotype of sensory neurons inside intrinsic cardiac ganglia. In the present study, rat intrinsic cardiac ganglia neurons were characterized neurochemically with immunohistochemistry using glutamatergic markers: vesicular glutamate transporters 1 and 2 (VGLUT1; VGLUT2), and glutaminase (GLS), the enzyme essential for glutamate production. Glutamatergic neurons (VGLUT1/VGLUT2/GLS) in the ICG that have axons to the ventricles were identified by retrograde tracing of wheat germ agglutinin-horseradish peroxidase (WGA-HRP) injected in the ventricular wall. Co-labeling of VGLUT1, VGLUT2, and GLS with the vesicular acetylcholine transporter (VAChT) was used to evaluate the relationship between post-ganglionic autonomic neurons and glutamatergic neurons. Sequential labeling of VGLUT1 and VGLUT2 in adjacent tissue sections was used to evaluate the co-localization of VGLUT1 and VGLUT2 in ICG neurons. Our studies yielded the following results: (1) intrinsic cardiac ganglia contain glutamatergic neurons with GLS for glutamate production and VGLUT1 and 2 for transport of glutamate into synaptic vesicles; (2) atrial intrinsic cardiac ganglia contain neurons that project to ventricle walls and these neurons are glutamatergic; (3) many glutamatergic ICG neurons also were cholinergic, expressing VAChT. (4) VGLUT1 and VGLUT2 co-localization occurred in ICG neurons with variation of their protein expression level. Investigation of both glutamatergic and cholinergic ICG

  20. Salsolinol facilitates glutamatergic transmission to dopamine neurons in the posterior ventral tegmental area of rats.

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    Guiqin Xie

    Full Text Available Although in vivo evidence indicates that salsolinol, the condensation product of acetaldehyde and dopamine, has properties that may contribute to alcohol abuse, the underlying mechanisms have not been fully elucidated. We have reported previously that salsolinol stimulates dopamine neurons in the posterior ventral tegmental area (p-VTA partly by reducing inhibitory GABAergic transmission, and that ethanol increases glutamatergic transmission to VTA-dopamine neurons via the activation of dopamine D(1 receptors (D(1Rs. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that salsolinol stimulates dopamine neurons involving activation of D(1Rs. By using whole-cell recordings on p-VTA-dopamine neurons in acute brain slices of rats, we found that salsolinol-induced increase in spike frequency of dopamine neurons was substantially attenuated by DL-2-amino-5-phosphono-valeric acid and 6, 7-dinitroquinoxaline-2, 3-dione, the antagonists of glutamatergic N-Methyl-D-aspartic acid and α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptors. Moreover, salsolinol increased the amplitude of evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs and the frequency but not the amplitude of spontaneous EPSCs. Additionally, SKF83566, a D(1R antagonist attenuated the salsolinol-induced facilitation of EPSCs and of spontaneous firing of dopamine neurons. Our data reveal that salsolinol enhances glutamatergic transmission onto dopamine neurons via activation of D(1Rs at the glutamatergic afferents in dopamine neurons, which contributes to salsolinol's stimulating effect on p-VTA dopamine neurons. This appears to be a novel mechanism which contributes toward rewarding properties of salsolinol.

  1. Dynamical responses to external stimuli for both cases of excitatory and inhibitory synchronization in a complex neuronal network.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Sang-Yoon; Lim, Woochang

    2017-10-01

    For studying how dynamical responses to external stimuli depend on the synaptic-coupling type, we consider two types of excitatory and inhibitory synchronization (i.e., synchronization via synaptic excitation and inhibition) in complex small-world networks of excitatory regular spiking (RS) pyramidal neurons and inhibitory fast spiking (FS) interneurons. For both cases of excitatory and inhibitory synchronization, effects of synaptic couplings on dynamical responses to external time-periodic stimuli S ( t ) (applied to a fraction of neurons) are investigated by varying the driving amplitude A of S ( t ). Stimulated neurons are phase-locked to external stimuli for both cases of excitatory and inhibitory couplings. On the other hand, the stimulation effect on non-stimulated neurons depends on the type of synaptic coupling. The external stimulus S ( t ) makes a constructive effect on excitatory non-stimulated RS neurons (i.e., it causes external phase lockings in the non-stimulated sub-population), while S ( t ) makes a destructive effect on inhibitory non-stimulated FS interneurons (i.e., it breaks up original inhibitory synchronization in the non-stimulated sub-population). As results of these different effects of S ( t ), the type and degree of dynamical response (e.g., synchronization enhancement or suppression), characterized by the dynamical response factor [Formula: see text] (given by the ratio of synchronization degree in the presence and absence of stimulus), are found to vary in a distinctly different way, depending on the synaptic-coupling type. Furthermore, we also measure the matching degree between the dynamics of the two sub-populations of stimulated and non-stimulated neurons in terms of a "cross-correlation" measure [Formula: see text]. With increasing A , based on [Formula: see text], we discuss the cross-correlations between the two sub-populations, affecting the dynamical responses to S ( t ).

  2. Excitatory amino acid receptors and disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meldrum, B S

    1992-08-01

    Recent advances in the molecular biology of excitatory amino acid receptors are reviewed. Evidence that drugs blocking the excitatory action of glutamate at the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) and non-NMDA receptors may be of clinical use in epilepsy, Parkinson's disease, cerebral ischaemia and trauma, acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) encephalopathy and neuropathic pain is summarized.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  4. EDITORIAL: Synaptic electronics Synaptic electronics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demming, Anna; Gimzewski, James K.; Vuillaume, Dominique

    2013-09-01

    Conventional computers excel in logic and accurate scientific calculations but make hard work of open ended problems that human brains handle easily. Even von Neumann—the mathematician and polymath who first developed the programming architecture that forms the basis of today's computers—was already looking to the brain for future developments before his death in 1957 [1]. Neuromorphic computing uses approaches that better mimic the working of the human brain. Recent developments in nanotechnology are now providing structures with very accommodating properties for neuromorphic approaches. This special issue, with guest editors James K Gimzewski and Dominique Vuillaume, is devoted to research at the serendipitous interface between the two disciplines. 'Synaptic electronics', looks at artificial devices with connections that demonstrate behaviour similar to synapses in the nervous system allowing a new and more powerful approach to computing. Synapses and connecting neurons respond differently to incident signals depending on the history of signals previously experienced, ultimately leading to short term and long term memory behaviour. The basic characteristics of a synapse can be replicated with around ten simple transistors. However with the human brain having around 1011 neurons and 1015 synapses, artificial neurons and synapses from basic transistors are unlikely to accommodate the scalability required. The discovery of nanoscale elements that function as 'memristors' has provided a key tool for the implementation of synaptic connections [2]. Leon Chua first developed the concept of the 'The memristor—the missing circuit element' in 1971 [3]. In this special issue he presents a tutorial describing how memristor research has fed into our understanding of synaptic behaviour and how they can be applied in information processing [4]. He also describes, 'The new principle of local activity, which uncovers a minuscule life-enabling "Goldilocks zone", dubbed the

  5. Synaptic communication between neurons and NG2+ cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paukert, Martin; Bergles, Dwight E

    2006-10-01

    Chemical synaptic transmission provides the basis for much of the rapid signaling that occurs within neuronal networks. However, recent studies have provided compelling evidence that synapses are not used exclusively for communication between neurons. Physiological and anatomical studies indicate that a distinct class of glia known as NG2(+) cells also forms direct synaptic junctions with both glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons. Glutamatergic signaling can influence intracellular Ca(2+) levels in NG2(+) cells by activating Ca(2+) permeable AMPA receptors, and these inputs can be potentiated through high frequency stimulation. Although the significance of this highly differentiated form of communication remains to be established, these neuro-glia synapses might enable neurons to influence rapidly the behavior of this ubiquitous class of glial progenitors.

  6. Synaptic damage underlies EEG abnormalities in postanoxic encephalopathy: A computational study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruijter, B J; Hofmeijer, J; Meijer, H G E; van Putten, M J A M

    2017-09-01

    In postanoxic coma, EEG patterns indicate the severity of encephalopathy and typically evolve in time. We aim to improve the understanding of pathophysiological mechanisms underlying these EEG abnormalities. We used a mean field model comprising excitatory and inhibitory neurons, local synaptic connections, and input from thalamic afferents. Anoxic damage is modeled as aggravated short-term synaptic depression, with gradual recovery over many hours. Additionally, excitatory neurotransmission is potentiated, scaling with the severity of anoxic encephalopathy. Simulations were compared with continuous EEG recordings of 155 comatose patients after cardiac arrest. The simulations agree well with six common categories of EEG rhythms in postanoxic encephalopathy, including typical transitions in time. Plausible results were only obtained if excitatory synapses were more severely affected by short-term synaptic depression than inhibitory synapses. In postanoxic encephalopathy, the evolution of EEG patterns presumably results from gradual improvement of complete synaptic failure, where excitatory synapses are more severely affected than inhibitory synapses. The range of EEG patterns depends on the excitation-inhibition imbalance, probably resulting from long-term potentiation of excitatory neurotransmission. Our study is the first to relate microscopic synaptic dynamics in anoxic brain injury to both typical EEG observations and their evolution in time. Copyright © 2017 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Immunostaining for Homer reveals the majority of excitatory synapses in laminae I?III of the mouse spinal dorsal horn

    OpenAIRE

    Gutierrez-Mecinas, Maria; Kuehn, Emily D.; Abraira, Victoria E.; Polg?r, Erika; Watanabe, Masahiko; Todd, Andrew J.

    2016-01-01

    The spinal dorsal horn processes somatosensory information before conveying it to the brain. The neuronal organization of the dorsal horn is still poorly understood, although recent studies have defined several distinct populations among the interneurons, which account for most of its constituent neurons. All primary afferents, and the great majority of neurons in laminae I–III are glutamatergic, and a major factor limiting our understanding of the synaptic circuitry has been the difficulty i...

  8. Expression of gastrin-releasing peptide by excitatory interneurons in the mouse superficial dorsal horn.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gutierrez-Mecinas, Maria; Watanabe, Masahiko; Todd, Andrew J

    2014-12-11

    Gastrin-releasing peptide (GRP) and its receptor have been shown to play an important role in the sensation of itch. However, although GRP immunoreactivity has been detected in the spinal dorsal horn, there is debate about whether this originates from primary afferents or local excitatory interneurons. We therefore examined the relation of GRP immunoreactivity to that seen with antibodies that label primary afferent or excitatory interneuron terminals. We tested the specificity of the GRP antibody by preincubating with peptides with which it could potentially cross-react. We also examined tissue from a mouse line in which enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) is expressed under control of the GRP promoter. GRP immunoreactivity was seen in both primary afferent and non-primary glutamatergic axon terminals in the superficial dorsal horn. However, immunostaining was blocked by pre-incubation of the antibody with substance P, which is present at high levels in many nociceptive primary afferents. EGFP+ cells in the GRP-EGFP mouse did not express Pax2, and their axons contained the vesicular glutamate transporter 2 (VGLUT2), indicating that they are excitatory interneurons. In most cases, their axons were also GRP-immunoreactive. Multiple-labelling immunocytochemical studies indicated that these cells did not express either of the preprotachykinin peptides, and that they generally lacked protein kinase Cγ, which is expressed by a subset of the excitatory interneurons in this region. These results show that GRP is expressed by a distinct population of excitatory interneurons in laminae I-II that are likely to be involved in the itch pathway. They also suggest that the GRP immunoreactivity seen in primary afferents in previous studies may have resulted from cross-reaction of the GRP antibody with substance P or the closely related peptide neurokinin A.

  9. Candidate glutamatergic neurons in the visual system of Drosophila.

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    Shamprasad Varija Raghu

    Full Text Available The visual system of Drosophila contains approximately 60,000 neurons that are organized in parallel, retinotopically arranged columns. A large number of these neurons have been characterized in great anatomical detail. However, studies providing direct evidence for synaptic signaling and the neurotransmitter used by individual neurons are relatively sparse. Here we present a first layout of neurons in the Drosophila visual system that likely release glutamate as their major neurotransmitter. We identified 33 different types of neurons of the lamina, medulla, lobula and lobula plate. Based on the previous Golgi-staining analysis, the identified neurons are further classified into 16 major subgroups representing lamina monopolar (L, transmedullary (Tm, transmedullary Y (TmY, Y, medulla intrinsic (Mi, Mt, Pm, Dm, Mi Am, bushy T (T, translobula plate (Tlp, lobula intrinsic (Lcn, Lt, Li, lobula plate tangential (LPTCs and lobula plate intrinsic (LPi cell types. In addition, we found 11 cell types that were not described by the previous Golgi analysis. This classification of candidate glutamatergic neurons fosters the future neurogenetic dissection of information processing in circuits of the fly visual system.

  10. Spike Train Auto-Structure Impacts Post-Synaptic Firing and Timing-Based Plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheller, Bertram; Castellano, Marta; Vicente, Raul; Pipa, Gordon

    2011-01-01

    Cortical neurons are typically driven by several thousand synapses. The precise spatiotemporal pattern formed by these inputs can modulate the response of a post-synaptic cell. In this work, we explore how the temporal structure of pre-synaptic inhibitory and excitatory inputs impact the post-synaptic firing of a conductance-based integrate and fire neuron. Both the excitatory and inhibitory input was modeled by renewal gamma processes with varying shape factors for modeling regular and temporally random Poisson activity. We demonstrate that the temporal structure of mutually independent inputs affects the post-synaptic firing, while the strength of the effect depends on the firing rates of both the excitatory and inhibitory inputs. In a second step, we explore the effect of temporal structure of mutually independent inputs on a simple version of Hebbian learning, i.e., hard bound spike-timing-dependent plasticity. We explore both the equilibrium weight distribution and the speed of the transient weight dynamics for different mutually independent gamma processes. We find that both the equilibrium distribution of the synaptic weights and the speed of synaptic changes are modulated by the temporal structure of the input. Finally, we highlight that the sensitivity of both the post-synaptic firing as well as the spike-timing-dependent plasticity on the auto-structure of the input of a neuron could be used to modulate the learning rate of synaptic modification. PMID:22203800

  11. Plasticity-Related Gene 1 Affects Mouse Barrel Cortex Function via Strengthening of Glutamatergic Thalamocortical Transmission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Unichenko, Petr; Kirischuk, Sergei; Yang, Jenq-Wei; Baumgart, Jan; Roskoden, Thomas; Schneider, Patrick; Sommer, Angela; Horta, Guilherme; Radyushkin, Konstantin; Nitsch, Robert; Vogt, Johannes; Luhmann, Heiko J

    2016-07-01

    Plasticity-related gene-1 (PRG-1) is a brain-specific protein that modulates glutamatergic synaptic transmission. Here we investigated the functional role of PRG-1 in adolescent and adult mouse barrel cortex both in vitro and in vivo. Compared with wild-type (WT) animals, PRG-1-deficient (KO) mice showed specific behavioral deficits in tests assessing sensorimotor integration and whisker-based sensory discrimination as shown in the beam balance/walking test and sandpaper tactile discrimination test, respectively. At P25-31, spontaneous network activity in the barrel cortex in vivo was higher in KO mice compared with WT littermates, but not at P16-19. At P16-19, sensory evoked cortical responses in vivo elicited by single whisker stimulation were comparable in KO and WT mice. In contrast, at P25-31 evoked responses were smaller in amplitude and longer in duration in WT animals, whereas KO mice revealed no such developmental changes. In thalamocortical slices from KO mice, spontaneous activity was increased already at P16-19, and glutamatergic thalamocortical inputs to Layer 4 spiny stellate neurons were potentiated. We conclude that genetic ablation of PRG-1 modulates already at P16-19 spontaneous and evoked excitability of the barrel cortex, including enhancement of thalamocortical glutamatergic inputs to Layer 4, which distorts sensory processing in adulthood. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press.

  12. Piriform cortical glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons express coordinated plasticity for whisker-induced odor recall.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yahui; Gao, Zilong; Chen, Changfeng; Wen, Bo; Huang, Li; Ge, Rongjing; Zhao, Shidi; Fan, Ruichen; Feng, Jing; Lu, Wei; Wang, Liping; Wang, Jin-Hui

    2017-11-10

    Neural plasticity occurs in learning and memory. Coordinated plasticity at glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons during memory formation remains elusive, which we investigate in a mouse model of associative learning by cellular imaging and electrophysiology. Paired odor and whisker stimulations lead to whisker-induced olfaction response. In mice that express this cross-modal memory, the neurons in the piriform cortex are recruited to encode newly acquired whisker signal alongside innate odor signal, and their response patterns to these associated signals are different. There are emerged synaptic innervations from barrel cortical neurons to piriform cortical neurons from these mice. These results indicate the recruitment of associative memory cells in the piriform cortex after associative memory. In terms of the structural and functional plasticity at these associative memory cells in the piriform cortex, glutamatergic neurons and synapses are upregulated, GABAergic neurons and synapses are downregulated as well as their mutual innervations are refined in the coordinated manner. Therefore, the associated activations of sensory cortices triggered by their input signals induce the formation of their mutual synapse innervations, the recruitment of associative memory cells and the coordinated plasticity between the GABAergic and glutamatergic neurons, which work for associative memory cells to encode cross-modal associated signals in their integration, associative storage and distinguishable retrieval.

  13. Maturation- and sex-sensitive depression of hippocampal excitatory transmission in a rat schizophrenia model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patrich, Eti; Piontkewitz, Yael; Peretz, Asher; Weiner, Ina; Attali, Bernard

    2016-01-01

    Schizophrenia is associated with behavioral and brain structural abnormalities, of which the hippocampus appears to be one of the most consistent region affected. Previous studies performed on the poly I:C model of schizophrenia suggest that alterations in hippocampal synaptic transmission and plasticity take place in the offspring. However, these investigations yielded conflicting results and the neurophysiological alterations responsible for these deficits are still unclear. Here we performed for the first time a longitudinal study examining the impact of prenatal poly I:C treatment and of gender on hippocampal excitatory neurotransmission. In addition, we examined the potential preventive/curative effects of risperidone (RIS) treatment during the peri-adolescence period. Excitatory synaptic transmission was determined by stimulating Schaffer collaterals and monitoring fiber volley amplitude and slope of field-EPSP (fEPSP) in CA1 pyramidal neurons in male and female offspring hippocampal slices from postnatal days (PNDs) 18-20, 34, 70 and 90. Depression of hippocampal excitatory transmission appeared at juvenile age in male offspring of the poly I:C group, while it expressed with a delay in female, manifesting at adulthood. In addition, a reduced hippocampal size was found in both adult male and female offspring of poly I:C treated dams. Treatment with RIS at the peri-adolescence period fully restored in males but partly repaired in females these deficiencies. A maturation- and sex-dependent decrease in hippocampal excitatory transmission occurs in the offspring of poly I:C treated pregnant mothers. Pharmacological intervention with RIS during peri-adolescence can cure in a gender-sensitive fashion early occurring hippocampal synaptic deficits. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. The AMPA receptor-associated protein Shisa7 regulates hippocampal synaptic function and contextual memory

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schmitz, Leanne J M; Klaassen, Remco V; Ruiperez-Alonso, Marta; Zamri, Azra Elia; Stroeder, Jasper; Rao-Ruiz, Priyanka; Lodder, Johannes C; van der Loo, Rolinka J; Mansvelder, Huib D; Smit, August B; Spijker, Sabine; Verhage, Matthijs

    2017-01-01

    Glutamatergic synapses rely on AMPA receptors (AMPARs) for fast synaptic transmission and plasticity. AMPAR auxiliary proteins regulate receptor trafficking, and modulate receptor mobility and its biophysical properties. The AMPAR auxiliary protein Shisa7 (CKAMP59) has been shown to interact with

  15. Glutamatergic system abnormalities in posttraumatic stress disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishi, Daisuke; Hashimoto, Kenji; Noguchi, Hiroko; Hamazaki, Kei; Hamazaki, Tomohito; Matsuoka, Yutaka

    2015-12-01

    Accumulating evidence suggests involvement of the glutamatergic system in the biological mechanisms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), but few studies have demonstrated an association between glutamatergic system abnormalities and PTSD diagnosis or severity. We aimed to examine whether abnormalities in serum glutamate and in the glutamine/glutamate ratio were associated with PTSD diagnosis and severity in severely injured patients at risk for PTSD and major depressive disorder (MDD). This is a nested case-control study in TPOP (Tachikawa project for prevention of posttraumatic stress disorder with polyunsaturated fatty acid) trial. Diagnosis and severity of PTSD were assessed 3 months after the accidents using the Clinician-Administered PTSD Scale. The associations of glutamate levels and the glutamine/glutamate ratio with diagnosis and severity of PTSD and MDD were investigated by univariate and multiple linear regression analyses. Ninety-seven of 110 participants (88 %) completed assessments at 3 months. Serum glutamate levels were significantly higher for participants with full or partial PTSD than for participants without PTSD (p = 0.049) and for participants with MDD than for participants without MDD (p = 0.048). Multiple linear regression analyses showed serum glutamate levels were significantly positively associated with PTSD severity (p = 0.02) and MDD severity (p = 0.03). The glutamine/glutamate ratio was also significantly inversely associated with PTSD severity (p = 0.03), but not with MDD severity (p = 0.07). These findings suggest that the glutamatergic system may play a major role in the pathogenesis of PTSD and the need for new treatments targeting the glutamatergic system to be developed for PTSD.

  16. Confocal Synaptology: Synaptic Rearrangements in Neurodegenerative Disorders and upon Nervous System Injury

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maja Vulovic

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available The nervous system is a notable exception to the rule that the cell is the structural and functional unit of tissue systems and organs. The functional unit of the nervous system is the synapse, the contact between two nerve cells. As such, synapses are the foci of investigations of nervous system organization and function, as well as a potential readout for the progression of various disorders of the nervous system. In the past decade the development of antibodies specific to presynaptic terminals has enabled us to assess, at the optical, laser scanning microscopy level, these subcellular structures, and has provided a simple method for the quantification of various synapses. Indeed, excitatory (glutamatergic and inhibitory synapses can be visualized using antibodies against the respective vesicular transporters, and choline-acetyl transferase (ChAT immunoreactivity identifies cholinergic synapses throughout the central nervous system. Here we review the results of several studies in which these methods were used to estimate synaptic numbers as the structural equivalent of functional outcome measures in spinal cord and femoral nerve injuries, as well as in genetic mouse models of neurodegeneration, including Alzheimer’s disease (AD. The results implicate disease- and brain region-specific changes in specific types of synapses, which correlate well with the degree of functional deficit caused by the disease process. Additionally, results are reproducible between various studies and experimental paradigms, supporting the reliability of the method. To conclude, this quantitative approach enables fast and reliable estimation of the degree of the progression of neurodegenerative changes and can be used as a parameter of recovery in experimental models.

  17. TRPV1 marks synaptic segregation of multiple convergent afferents at the rat medial solitary tract nucleus.

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    James H Peters

    Full Text Available TRPV1 receptors are expressed on most but not all central terminals of cranial visceral afferents in the caudal solitary tract nucleus (NTS. TRPV1 is associated with unmyelinated C-fiber afferents. Both TRPV1+ and TRPV1- afferents enter NTS but their precise organization remains poorly understood. In horizontal brainstem slices, we activated solitary tract (ST afferents and recorded ST-evoked glutamatergic excitatory synaptic currents (ST-EPSCs under whole cell voltage clamp conditions from neurons of the medial subnucleus. Electrical shocks to the ST produced fixed latency EPSCs (jitter<200 µs that identified direct ST afferent innervation. Graded increases in shock intensity often recruited more than one ST afferent and ST-EPSCs had consistent threshold intensity, latency to onset, and unique EPSC waveforms that characterized each unitary ST afferent contact. The TRPV1 agonist capsaicin (100 nM blocked the evoked TRPV1+ ST-EPSCs and defined them as either TRPV1+ or TRPV1- inputs. No partial responses to capsaicin were observed so that in NTS neurons that received one or multiple (2-5 direct ST afferent inputs--all were either blocked by capsaicin or were unaltered. Since TRPV1 mediates asynchronous release following TRPV1+ ST-evoked EPSCs, we likewise found that recruiting more than one ST afferent further augmented the asynchronous response and was eliminated by capsaicin. Thus, TRPV1+ and TRPV1- afferents are completely segregated to separate NTS neurons. As a result, the TRPV1 receptor augments glutamate release only within unmyelinated afferent pathways in caudal medial NTS and our work indicates a complete separation of C-type from A-type afferent information at these first central neurons.

  18. Synaptic E-I Balance Underlies Efficient Neural Coding.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Shanglin; Yu, Yuguo

    2018-01-01

    Both theoretical and experimental evidence indicate that synaptic excitation and inhibition in the cerebral cortex are well-balanced during the resting state and sensory processing. Here, we briefly summarize the evidence for how neural circuits are adjusted to achieve this balance. Then, we discuss how such excitatory and inhibitory balance shapes stimulus representation and information propagation, two basic functions of neural coding. We also point out the benefit of adopting such a balance during neural coding. We conclude that excitatory and inhibitory balance may be a fundamental mechanism underlying efficient coding.

  19. Notch1 regulates hippocampal plasticity through interaction with the Reelin pathway, glutamatergic transmission and CREB signaling

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    Emanuele eBrai

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Notch signaling plays a crucial role in adult brain function such as synaptic plasticity, memory and olfaction. Several reports suggest an involvement of this pathway in neurodegenerative dementia. Yet, to date, the mechanism underlying Notch activity in mature neurons remains unresolved. In this work, we investigate how Notch regulates synaptic potentiation and contributes to the establishment of memory in mice. We observe that Notch1 is a postsynaptic receptor with functional interactions with the Reelin receptor, ApoER2, and the ionotropic receptor, NMDAR. Targeted loss of Notch1 in the hippocampal CA fields affects Reelin signaling by influencing Dab1 expression and impairs the synaptic potentiation achieved through Reelin stimulation. Further analysis indicates that loss of Notch1 affects the expression and composition of the NMDAR but not AMPAR. Glutamatergic signaling is further compromised through downregulation of CamKII and its secondary and tertiary messengers resulting in reduced CREB signaling. Our results identify Notch1 as an important regulator of mechanisms involved in synaptic plasticity and memory formation. These findings emphasize the possible involvement of this signaling receptor in dementia.

  20. Optogenetic Examination of Prefrontal-Amygdala Synaptic Development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arruda-Carvalho, Maithe; Wu, Wan-Chen; Cummings, Kirstie A; Clem, Roger L

    2017-03-15

    A brain network comprising the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) and amygdala plays important roles in developmentally regulated cognitive and emotional processes. However, very little is known about the maturation of mPFC-amygdala circuitry. We conducted anatomical tracing of mPFC projections and optogenetic interrogation of their synaptic connections with neurons in the basolateral amygdala (BLA) at neonatal to adult developmental stages in mice. Results indicate that mPFC-BLA projections exhibit delayed emergence relative to other mPFC pathways and establish synaptic transmission with BLA excitatory and inhibitory neurons in late infancy, events that coincide with a massive increase in overall synaptic drive. During subsequent adolescence, mPFC-BLA circuits are further modified by excitatory synaptic strengthening as well as a transient surge in feedforward inhibition. The latter was correlated with increased spontaneous inhibitory currents in excitatory neurons, suggesting that mPFC-BLA circuit maturation culminates in a period of exuberant GABAergic transmission. These findings establish a time course for the onset and refinement of mPFC-BLA transmission and point to potential sensitive periods in the development of this critical network. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Human mPFC-amygdala functional connectivity is developmentally regulated and figures prominently in numerous psychiatric disorders with a high incidence of adolescent onset. However, it remains unclear when synaptic connections between these structures emerge or how their properties change with age. Our work establishes developmental windows and cellular substrates for synapse maturation in this pathway involving both excitatory and inhibitory circuits. The engagement of these substrates by early life experience may support the ontogeny of fundamental behaviors but could also lead to inappropriate circuit refinement and psychopathology in adverse situations. Copyright © 2017 the authors 0270-6474/17/372976-10$15.00/0.

  1. Glutamatergic and GABAergic gene sets in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Naaijen, Jill; Bralten, Janita; Poelmans, Geert

    2017-01-01

    Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and autism spectrum disorders (ASD) often co-occur. Both are highly heritable; however, it has been difficult to discover genetic risk variants. Glutamate and GABA are main excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmitters in the brain; their balance...... within glutamatergic and GABAergic genes were investigated using the MAGMA software in an ADHD case-only sample (n=931), in which we assessed ASD symptoms and response inhibition on a Stop task. Gene set analysis for ADHD symptom severity, divided into inattention and hyperactivity/impulsivity symptoms...... is essential for proper brain development and functioning. In this study we investigated the role of glutamate and GABA genetics in ADHD severity, autism symptom severity and inhibitory performance, based on gene set analysis, an approach to investigate multiple genetic variants simultaneously. Common variants...

  2. Social Isolation During the Critical Period Reduces Synaptic and Intrinsic Excitability of a Subtype of Pyramidal Cell in Mouse Prefrontal Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamamuro, Kazuhiko; Yoshino, Hiroki; Ogawa, Yoichi; Makinodan, Manabu; Toritsuka, Michihiro; Yamashita, Masayuki; Corfas, Gabriel; Kishimoto, Toshifumi

    2018-03-01

    Juvenile social experience is crucial for the functional development of forebrain regions, especially the prefrontal cortex (PFC). We previously reported that social isolation for 2 weeks after weaning induces prefrontal cortex dysfunction and hypomyelination. However, the effect of social isolation on physiological properties of PFC neuronal circuit remained unknown. Since hypomyelination due to isolation is prominent in deep-layer of medial PFC (mPFC), we focused on 2 types of Layer-5 pyramidal cells in the mPFC: prominent h-current (PH) cells and nonprominent h-current (non-PH) cells. We found that a 2-week social isolation after weaning leads to a specific deterioration in action potential properties and reduction in excitatory synaptic inputs in PH cells. The effects of social isolation on PH cells, which involve reduction in functional glutamatergic synapses and α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid/N-methyl-d-aspartate charge ratio, are specific to the 2 weeks after weaning and to the mPFC. We conclude that juvenile social experience plays crucial roles in the functional development in a subtype of Layer-5 pyramidal cells in the mPFC. Since these neurons project to subcortical structures, a deficit in social experience during the critical period may result in immature neural circuitry between mPFC and subcortical targets. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  3. GABAergic activities control spike timing- and frequency-dependent long-term depression at hippocampal excitatory synapses

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    Makoto Nishiyama

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available GABAergic interneuronal network activities in the hippocampus control a variety of neural functions, including learning and memory, by regulating θ and γ oscillations. How these GABAergic activities at pre- and post-synaptic sites of hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells differentially contribute to synaptic function and plasticity during their repetitive pre- and post-synaptic spiking at θ and γ oscillations is largely unknown. We show here that activities mediated by postsynaptic GABAARs and presynaptic GABABRs determine, respectively, the spike timing- and frequency-dependence of activity-induced synaptic modifications at Schaffer collateral-CA1 excitatory synapses. We demonstrate that both feedforward and feedback GABAAR-mediated inhibition in the postsynaptic cell controls the spike timing-dependent long-term depression of excitatory inputs (“e-LTD” at the θ frequency. We also show that feedback postsynaptic inhibition specifically causes e-LTD of inputs that induce small postsynaptic currents (<70 pA with LTP timing, thus enforcing the requirement of cooperativity for induction of long-term potentiation at excitatory inputs (“e-LTP”. Furthermore, under spike-timing protocols that induce e-LTP and e-LTD at excitatory synapses, we observed parallel induction of LTP and LTD at inhibitory inputs (“i-LTP” and “i-LTD” to the same postsynaptic cells. Finally, we show that presynaptic GABABR-mediated inhibition plays a major role in the induction of frequency-dependent e-LTD at α and β frequencies. These observations demonstrate the critical influence of GABAergic interneuronal network activities in regulating the spike timing and frequency dependences of long-term synaptic modifications in the hippocampus.

  4. Schaffer collateral inputs to CA1 excitatory and inhibitory neurons follow different connectivity rules.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kwon, Osung; Feng, Linqing; Druckmann, Shaul; Kim, Jinhyun

    2018-05-04

    Neural circuits, governed by a complex interplay between excitatory and inhibitory neurons, are the substrate for information processing, and the organization of synaptic connectivity in neural network is an important determinant of circuit function. Here, we analyzed the fine structure of connectivity in hippocampal CA1 excitatory and inhibitory neurons innervated by Schaffer collaterals (SCs) using mGRASP in male mice. Our previous study revealed spatially structured synaptic connectivity between CA3-CA1 pyramidal cells (PCs). Surprisingly, parvalbumin-positive interneurons (PVs) showed a significantly more random pattern spatial structure. Notably, application of Peters' Rule for synapse prediction by random overlap between axons and dendrites enhanced structured connectivity in PCs, but, by contrast, made the connectivity pattern in PVs more random. In addition, PCs in a deep sublayer of striatum pyramidale appeared more highly structured than PCs in superficial layers, and little or no sublayer specificity was found in PVs. Our results show that CA1 excitatory PCs and inhibitory PVs innervated by the same SC inputs follow different connectivity rules. The different organizations of fine scale structured connectivity in hippocampal excitatory and inhibitory neurons provide important insights into the development and functions of neural networks. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Understanding how neural circuits generate behavior is one of the central goals of neuroscience. An important component of this endeavor is the mapping of fine-scale connection patterns that underlie, and help us infer, signal processing in the brain. Here, using our recently developed synapse detection technology (mGRASP and neuTube), we provide detailed profiles of synaptic connectivity in excitatory (CA1 pyramidal) and inhibitory (CA1 parvalbumin-positive) neurons innervated by the same presynaptic inputs (CA3 Schaffer collaterals). Our results reveal that these two types of CA1 neurons follow

  5. Enhanced quantal release of excitatory transmitter in anterior cingulate cortex of adult mice with chronic pain

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    Zhao Ming-Gao

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The anterior cingulate cortex (ACC is a forebrain structure that plays important roles in emotion, learning, memory and persistent pain. Our previous studies have demonstrated that the enhancement of excitatory synaptic transmission was induced by peripheral inflammation and nerve injury in ACC synapses. However, little information is available on their presynaptic mechanisms, since the source of the enhanced synaptic transmission could include the enhanced probability of neurotransmitter release at existing release sites and/or increases in the number of available vesicles. The present study aims to perform quantal analysis of excitatory synapses in the ACC with chronic pain to examine the source of these increases. The quantal analysis revealed that both probability of transmitter release and number of available vesicles were increased in a mouse model of peripheral inflammation, whereas only probability of transmitter release but not number of available vesicles was enhanced in a mouse model of neuropathic pain. In addition, we compared the miniature excitatory postsynaptic potentials (mEPSCs in ACC synapses with those in other pain-related brain areas such as the amygdala and spinal cord. Interestingly, the rate and amplitude of mEPSCs in ACC synapses were significantly lower than those in the amygdala and spinal cord. Our studies provide strong evidences that chronic inflammatory pain increases both probability of transmitter release and number of available vesicles, whereas neuropathic pain increases only probability of transmitter release in the ACC synapses.

  6. Targeting the Glutamatergic System to Treat Pathological Gambling: Current Evidence and Future Perspectives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mauro Pettorruso

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Pathological gambling or gambling disorder has been defined by the DSM-5 as a behavioral addiction. To date, its pathophysiology is not completely understood and there is no FDA-approved treatment for gambling disorders. Glutamate is the principal excitatory neurotransmitter in the nervous system and it has been recently involved in the pathophysiology of addictive behaviors. In this paper, we review the current literature on a class of drugs that act as modulating glutamate system in PG. A total of 19 studies have been included, according to inclusion and exclusion criteria. Clinical trial and case series using glutamatergic drugs (N-acetylcysteine, memantine, amantadine, topiramate, acamprosate, baclofen, gabapentin, pregabalin, and modafinil will be presented to elucidate the effectiveness on gambling behaviors and on the related clinical dimensions (craving, withdrawal, and cognitive symptoms in PG patients. The results have been discussed to gain more insight in the pathophysiology and treatment of PG. In conclusion, manipulation of glutamatergic neurotransmission appears to be promising in developing improved therapeutic agents for the treatment of gambling disorders. Further studies are required. Finally, we propose future directions and challenges in this research area.

  7. A presynaptic role for PKA in synaptic tagging and memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Alan Jung; Havekes, Robbert; Choi, Jennifer Hk; Luczak, Vince; Nie, Ting; Huang, Ted; Abel, Ted

    2014-10-01

    Protein kinase A (PKA) and other signaling molecules are spatially restricted within neurons by A-kinase anchoring proteins (AKAPs). Although studies on compartmentalized PKA signaling have focused on postsynaptic mechanisms, presynaptically anchored PKA may contribute to synaptic plasticity and memory because PKA also regulates presynaptic transmitter release. Here, we examine this issue using genetic and pharmacological application of Ht31, a PKA anchoring disrupting peptide. At the hippocampal Schaffer collateral CA3-CA1 synapse, Ht31 treatment elicits a rapid decay of synaptic responses to repetitive stimuli, indicating a fast depletion of the readily releasable pool of synaptic vesicles. The interaction between PKA and proteins involved in producing this pool of synaptic vesicles is supported by biochemical assays showing that synaptic vesicle protein 2 (SV2), Rim1, and SNAP25 are components of a complex that interacts with cAMP. Moreover, acute treatment with Ht31 reduces the levels of SV2. Finally, experiments with transgenic mouse lines, which express Ht31 in excitatory neurons at the Schaffer collateral CA3-CA1 synapse, highlight a requirement for presynaptically anchored PKA in pathway-specific synaptic tagging and long-term contextual fear memory. These results suggest that a presynaptically compartmentalized PKA is critical for synaptic plasticity and memory by regulating the readily releasable pool of synaptic vesicles. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Glutamatergic and GABAergic TCA cycle and neurotransmitter cycling fluxes in different regions of mouse brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tiwari, Vivek; Ambadipudi, Susmitha; Patel, Anant B

    2013-10-01

    The (13)C nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) studies together with the infusion of (13)C-labeled substrates in rats and humans have provided important insight into brain energy metabolism. In the present study, we have extended a three-compartment metabolic model in mouse to investigate glutamatergic and GABAergic tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle and neurotransmitter cycle fluxes across different regions of the brain. The (13)C turnover of amino acids from [1,6-(13)C2]glucose was monitored ex vivo using (1)H-[(13)C]-NMR spectroscopy. The astroglial glutamate pool size, one of the important parameters of the model, was estimated by a short infusion of [2-(13)C]acetate. The ratio Vcyc/VTCA was calculated from the steady-state acetate experiment. The (13)C turnover curves of [4-(13)C]/[3-(13)C]glutamate, [4-(13)C]glutamine, [2-(13)C]/[3-(13)C]GABA, and [3-(13)C]aspartate from [1,6-(13)C2]glucose were analyzed using a three-compartment metabolic model to estimate the rates of the TCA cycle and neurotransmitter cycle associated with glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons. The glutamatergic TCA cycle rate was found to be highest in the cerebral cortex (0.91 ± 0.05 μmol/g per minute) and least in the hippocampal region (0.64 ± 0.07 μmol/g per minute) of the mouse brain. In contrast, the GABAergic TCA cycle flux was found to be highest in the thalamus-hypothalamus (0.28 ± 0.01 μmol/g per minute) and least in the cerebral cortex (0.24 ± 0.02 μmol/g per minute). These findings indicate that the energetics of excitatory and inhibitory function is distinct across the mouse brain.

  9. The distribution of excitatory amino acid receptors on acutely dissociated dorsal horn neurons from postnatal rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arancio, O; Yoshimura, M; Murase, K; MacDermott, A B

    1993-01-01

    Excitatory amino acid receptor distribution was mapped on acutely dissociated neurons from postnatal rat spinal cord dorsal horn. N-methyl D-aspartate, quisqualate and kainate were applied to multiple locations along the somal and dendritic surfaces of voltage-clamped neurons by means of a pressure application system. To partially compensate for the decrement of response amplitude due to current loss between the site of activation on the dendrite and the recording electrode at the soma, a solution containing 0.15 M KCl was applied on the cell bodies and dendrites of some cells to estimate an empirical length constant. In the majority of the cells tested, the dendritic membrane had regions of higher sensitivity to excitatory amino acid agonists than the somatic membrane, with dendritic response amplitudes reaching more than seven times those at the cell body. A comparison of the relative changes in sensitivity between each combination of two of the three excitatory amino acid agonists along the same dendrite showed different patterns of agonist sensitivity along the dendrite in the majority of the cells. These data were obtained from dorsal horn neurons that had developed and formed synaptic connections in vivo. They demonstrate that in contrast to observations made on ventral horn neurons, receptor density for all the excitatory amino acid receptors on dorsal horn neurons, including the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor, are generally higher on the dendrites than on the soma. Further, these results are similar to those obtained from dorsal horn neurons grown in culture.

  10. Imaging the glutamatergic system in vivo - relevance to schizophrenia

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    Bressan, R.A.; Pilowsky, L.S. [Inst. of Psychiatry, London (United Kingdom); Inst. of Nuclear Medicine, University College of London Medical School (United Kingdom)

    2000-11-01

    Schizophrenia is a devastating psychiatric illness. Its pathophysiology is not fully clarified. Animal data, in vitro and indirect in vivo imaging support glutamatergic N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor hypofunction in the disorder. A lack of suitable ligands has obstructed direct evaluation of the NMDA receptor hypofunction hypothesis of schizophrenia. Many research groups are working towards developing appropriate single-photon emission tomography and positron emission tomography ligands for the NMDA receptor. This paper briefly presents evidence for links between glutamatergic system dysfunction and schizophrenia. It reviews the radioligands to evaluate glutamatergic receptors in vivo and discusses issues in developing novel ligands for the glutamatergic system. (orig.)

  11. Imaging the glutamatergic system in vivo - relevance to schizophrenia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bressan, R.A.; Pilowsky, L.S.

    2000-01-01

    Schizophrenia is a devastating psychiatric illness. Its pathophysiology is not fully clarified. Animal data, in vitro and indirect in vivo imaging support glutamatergic N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor hypofunction in the disorder. A lack of suitable ligands has obstructed direct evaluation of the NMDA receptor hypofunction hypothesis of schizophrenia. Many research groups are working towards developing appropriate single-photon emission tomography and positron emission tomography ligands for the NMDA receptor. This paper briefly presents evidence for links between glutamatergic system dysfunction and schizophrenia. It reviews the radioligands to evaluate glutamatergic receptors in vivo and discusses issues in developing novel ligands for the glutamatergic system. (orig.)

  12. Contextual Learning Requires Functional Diversity at Excitatory and Inhibitory Synapses onto CA1 Pyramidal Neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dai Mitsushima

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Although the hippocampus is processing temporal and spatial information in particular context, the encoding rule creating memory is completely unknown. To examine the mechanism, we trained rats on an inhibitory avoidance (IA task, a hippocampus-dependent rapid one-trial contextual learning paradigm. By combining Herpes virus-mediated in vivo gene delivery with in vitro patch-clamp recordings, I reported contextual learning drives GluR1-containing AMPA receptors into CA3-CA1 synapses. The molecular event is required for contextual memory, since bilateral expression of delivery blocker in CA1 successfully blocked IA learning. Moreover, I found a logarithmic correlation between the number of delivery blocking cells and learning performance. Considering that one all-or-none device can process 1-bit of data per clock (Nobert Wiener 1961, the logarithmic correlation may provides evidence that CA1 neurons transmit essential data of contextual information. Further, I recently reported critical role of acetylcholine as an intrinsic trigger of learning-dependent synaptic plasticity. IA training induced ACh release in CA1 that strengthened not only AMPA receptor-mediated excitatory synapses, but also GABAA receptor-mediated inhibitory synapses on each CA1 neuron. More importantly, IA-trained rats showed individually different excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs with wide variation on each CA1 neuron. Here I propose a new hypothesis that the diversity of synaptic inputs on CA1 neurons may depict cell-specific outputs processing experienced episodes after training.

  13. Neuroligin-1 loss is associated with reduced tenacity of excitatory synapses.

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    Adel Zeidan

    Full Text Available Neuroligins (Nlgns are postsynaptic, integral membrane cell adhesion molecules that play important roles in the formation, validation, and maturation of synapses in the mammalian central nervous system. Given their prominent roles in the life cycle of synapses, it might be expected that the loss of neuroligin family members would affect the stability of synaptic organization, and ultimately, affect the tenacity and persistence of individual synaptic junctions. Here we examined whether and to what extent the loss of Nlgn-1 affects the dynamics of several key synaptic molecules and the constancy of their contents at individual synapses over time. Fluorescently tagged versions of the postsynaptic scaffold molecule PSD-95, the AMPA-type glutamate receptor subunit GluA2 and the presynaptic vesicle molecule SV2A were expressed in primary cortical cultures from Nlgn-1 KO mice and wild-type (WT littermates, and live imaging was used to follow the constancy of their contents at individual synapses over periods of 8-12 hours. We found that the loss of Nlgn-1 was associated with larger fluctuations in the synaptic contents of these molecules and a poorer preservation of their contents at individual synapses. Furthermore, rates of synaptic turnover were somewhat greater in neurons from Nlgn-1 knockout mice. Finally, the increased GluA2 redistribution rates observed in neurons from Nlgn-1 knockout mice were negated by suppressing spontaneous network activity. These findings suggest that the loss of Nlgn-1 is associated with some use-dependent destabilization of excitatory synapse organization, and indicate that in the absence of Nlgn-1, the tenacity of excitatory synapses might be somewhat impaired.

  14. BACE1 Is Necessary for Experience-Dependent Homeostatic Synaptic Plasticity in Visual Cortex

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    Emily Petrus

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Alzheimer’s disease (AD is the most common form of age-related dementia, which is thought to result from overproduction and/or reduced clearance of amyloid-beta (Aβ peptides. Studies over the past few decades suggest that Aβ is produced in an activity-dependent manner and has physiological relevance to normal brain functions. Similarly, physiological functions for β- and γ-secretases, the two key enzymes that produce Aβ by sequentially processing the amyloid precursor protein (APP, have been discovered over recent years. In particular, activity-dependent production of Aβ has been suggested to play a role in homeostatic regulation of excitatory synaptic function. There is accumulating evidence that activity-dependent immediate early gene Arc is an activity “sensor,” which acts upstream of Aβ production and triggers AMPA receptor endocytosis to homeostatically downregulate the strength of excitatory synaptic transmission. We previously reported that Arc is critical for sensory experience-dependent homeostatic reduction of excitatory synaptic transmission in the superficial layers of visual cortex. Here we demonstrate that mice lacking the major neuronal β-secretase, BACE1, exhibit a similar phenotype: stronger basal excitatory synaptic transmission and failure to adapt to changes in visual experience. Our results indicate that BACE1 plays an essential role in sensory experience-dependent homeostatic synaptic plasticity in the neocortex.

  15. Intrinsically-generated fluctuating activity in excitatory-inhibitory networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mastrogiuseppe, Francesca; Ostojic, Srdjan

    2017-01-01

    Recurrent networks of non-linear units display a variety of dynamical regimes depending on the structure of their synaptic connectivity. A particularly remarkable phenomenon is the appearance of strongly fluctuating, chaotic activity in networks of deterministic, but randomly connected rate units. How this type of intrinsically generated fluctuations appears in more realistic networks of spiking neurons has been a long standing question. To ease the comparison between rate and spiking networks, recent works investigated the dynamical regimes of randomly-connected rate networks with segregated excitatory and inhibitory populations, and firing rates constrained to be positive. These works derived general dynamical mean field (DMF) equations describing the fluctuating dynamics, but solved these equations only in the case of purely inhibitory networks. Using a simplified excitatory-inhibitory architecture in which DMF equations are more easily tractable, here we show that the presence of excitation qualitatively modifies the fluctuating activity compared to purely inhibitory networks. In presence of excitation, intrinsically generated fluctuations induce a strong increase in mean firing rates, a phenomenon that is much weaker in purely inhibitory networks. Excitation moreover induces two different fluctuating regimes: for moderate overall coupling, recurrent inhibition is sufficient to stabilize fluctuations; for strong coupling, firing rates are stabilized solely by the upper bound imposed on activity, even if inhibition is stronger than excitation. These results extend to more general network architectures, and to rate networks receiving noisy inputs mimicking spiking activity. Finally, we show that signatures of the second dynamical regime appear in networks of integrate-and-fire neurons. PMID:28437436

  16. Rapid surface accumulation of NMDA receptors increases glutamatergic excitation during status epilepticus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naylor, David E; Liu, Hantao; Niquet, Jerome; Wasterlain, Claude G

    2013-06-01

    After 1h of lithium-pilocarpine status epilepticus (SE), immunocytochemical labeling of NMDA receptor NR1 subunits reveals relocation of subunits from the interior to the cell surface of dentate gyrus granule cells and CA3 pyramidal cells. Simultaneously, an increase in NMDA-miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSC) as well as an increase in NMDA receptor-mediated tonic currents is observed in hippocampal slices after SE. Mean-variance analysis of NMDA-mEPSCs estimates that the number of functional postsynaptic NMDA receptors per synapse increases 38% during SE, and antagonism by ifenprodil suggests that an increase in the surface representation of NR2B-containing NMDA receptors is responsible for the augmentation of both the phasic and tonic excitatory currents with SE. These results provide a potential mechanism for an enhancement of glutamatergic excitation that maintains SE and may contribute to excitotoxic injury during SE. Therapies that directly antagonize NMDA receptors may be a useful therapeutic strategy during refractory SE. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Modification of hippocampal markers of synaptic plasticity by memantine in animal models of acute and repeated restraint stress: implications for memory and behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amin, Shaimaa Nasr; El-Aidi, Ahmed Amro; Ali, Mohamed Mostafa; Attia, Yasser Mahmoud; Rashed, Laila Ahmed

    2015-06-01

    Stress is any condition that impairs the balance of the organism physiologically or psychologically. The response to stress involves several neurohormonal consequences. Glutamate is the primary excitatory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system, and its release is increased by stress that predisposes to excitotoxicity in the brain. Memantine is an uncompetitive N-methyl D-aspartate glutamatergic receptors antagonist and has shown beneficial effect on cognitive function especially in Alzheimer's disease. The aim of the work was to investigate memantine effect on memory and behavior in animal models of acute and repeated restraint stress with the evaluation of serum markers of stress and the expression of hippocampal markers of synaptic plasticity. Forty-two male rats were divided into seven groups (six rats/group): control, acute restraint stress, acute restraint stress with Memantine, repeated restraint stress, repeated restraint stress with Memantine and Memantine groups (two subgroups as positive control). Spatial working memory and behavior were assessed by performance in Y-maze. We evaluated serum cortisol, tumor necrotic factor, interleukin-6 and hippocampal expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor, synaptophysin and calcium-/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II. Our results revealed that Memantine improved spatial working memory in repeated stress, decreased serum level of stress markers and modified the hippocampal synaptic plasticity markers in both patterns of stress exposure; in ARS, Memantine upregulated the expression of synaptophysin and brain-derived neurotrophic factor and downregulated the expression of calcium-/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II, and in repeated restraint stress, it upregulated the expression of synaptophysin and downregulated calcium-/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II expression.

  18. Excitatory amino acid neurotoxicity and neurodegenerative disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meldrum, B; Garthwaite, J

    1990-09-01

    The progress over the last 30 years in defining the role of excitatory amino acids in normal physiological function and in the abnormal neuronal activity of epilepsy has been reviewed in earlier articles in this series. In the last five years it has become clear that excitatory amino acids also play a role in a wide range of neurodegenerative processes. The evidence is clearest where the degenerative process is acute, but is more controversial for slow degenerative processes. In this article Brian Meldrum and John Garthwaite review in vivo and in vitro studies of the cytotoxicity of amino acids and summarize the contribution of such toxicity to acute and chronic neurodegenerative disorders.

  19. Effects of decreased inhibition on synaptic plasticity and dendritic morphology in the juvenile prefrontal cortex

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    Xanthippi Konstantoudaki

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Excitation-inhibition balance is critical for maintaining proper functioning of the cerebral cortex, as evident from electrophysiological and modeling studies, and it is also important for animal behavior (Yizhar et al., 2011. In the cerebral cortex, excitation is provided by glutamate release from pyramidal neurons, while inhibition is provided by GABA release from several types of interneurons. Many neuropsychiatric disorders, such as epilepsy, anxiety, schizophrenia and autism exhibit an imbalance between the excitatory and inhibitory mechanisms of cortical circuits within key brain regions as prefrontal cortex or hippocampus, primarily through dysfunctions in the inhibitory system (Lewis, Volk, & Hashimoto, 2003; Marín, 2012 Given the significant role of GABAergic inhibition in shaping proper function of the cerebral cortex, we used a mouse model of developmentally decreased GABAergic inhibition in order to examine its effects in network properties, namely basal synaptic transmission, synaptic plasticity and dendritic morphology of pyramidal neurons. For our study, we used mice (postnatal day 20-30 in which the Rac1 protein was deleted from Nkx2.1-expressing neurons (Vidaki et al., 2012, (Rac1fl/flNkx2.1 +/cre referred as Rac1 KO mice, and heterozygous (Rac1+/flNkx2.1 +/cre or control (Rac1+/flNkx2.1 +/+ mice. The specific ablation of Rac1 protein from NKx2.1-expressing MGE-derived progenitors leads to a perturbation of their cell cycle exit resulting in decreased number of interneurons in the cortex(Vidaki et al, 2012. We prepared brain slices from the prefrontal cortex and recorded field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs from layer II neurons while stimulating axons in layer II. We find that the evoked fEPSPs are decreased in Rac1 KO mice compared to Rac1 heterozygous or control mice. This could suggest that the decreased GABAergic inhibition causes network alterations that result in reduced glutamatergic function. Furthermore

  20. The effect of STDP temporal kernel structure on the learning dynamics of single excitatory and inhibitory synapses.

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    Yotam Luz

    Full Text Available Spike-Timing Dependent Plasticity (STDP is characterized by a wide range of temporal kernels. However, much of the theoretical work has focused on a specific kernel - the "temporally asymmetric Hebbian" learning rules. Previous studies linked excitatory STDP to positive feedback that can account for the emergence of response selectivity. Inhibitory plasticity was associated with negative feedback that can balance the excitatory and inhibitory inputs. Here we study the possible computational role of the temporal structure of the STDP. We represent the STDP as a superposition of two processes: potentiation and depression. This allows us to model a wide range of experimentally observed STDP kernels, from Hebbian to anti-Hebbian, by varying a single parameter. We investigate STDP dynamics of a single excitatory or inhibitory synapse in purely feed-forward architecture. We derive a mean-field-Fokker-Planck dynamics for the synaptic weight and analyze the effect of STDP structure on the fixed points of the mean field dynamics. We find a phase transition along the Hebbian to anti-Hebbian parameter from a phase that is characterized by a unimodal distribution of the synaptic weight, in which the STDP dynamics is governed by negative feedback, to a phase with positive feedback characterized by a bimodal distribution. The critical point of this transition depends on general properties of the STDP dynamics and not on the fine details. Namely, the dynamics is affected by the pre-post correlations only via a single number that quantifies its overlap with the STDP kernel. We find that by manipulating the STDP temporal kernel, negative feedback can be induced in excitatory synapses and positive feedback in inhibitory. Moreover, there is an exact symmetry between inhibitory and excitatory plasticity, i.e., for every STDP rule of inhibitory synapse there exists an STDP rule for excitatory synapse, such that their dynamics is identical.

  1. Npas4 regulates excitatory-inhibitory balance within neural circuits through cell-type-specific gene programs.

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    Spiegel, Ivo; Mardinly, Alan R; Gabel, Harrison W; Bazinet, Jeremy E; Couch, Cameron H; Tzeng, Christopher P; Harmin, David A; Greenberg, Michael E

    2014-05-22

    The nervous system adapts to experience by inducing a transcriptional program that controls important aspects of synaptic plasticity. Although the molecular mechanisms of experience-dependent plasticity are well characterized in excitatory neurons, the mechanisms that regulate this process in inhibitory neurons are only poorly understood. Here, we describe a transcriptional program that is induced by neuronal activity in inhibitory neurons. We find that, while neuronal activity induces expression of early-response transcription factors such as Npas4 in both excitatory and inhibitory neurons, Npas4 activates distinct programs of late-response genes in inhibitory and excitatory neurons. These late-response genes differentially regulate synaptic input to these two types of neurons, promoting inhibition onto excitatory neurons while inducing excitation onto inhibitory neurons. These findings suggest that the functional outcomes of activity-induced transcriptional responses are adapted in a cell-type-specific manner to achieve a circuit-wide homeostatic response. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Diurnal rhythms in neurexins transcripts and inhibitory/excitatory synapse scaffold proteins in the biological clock.

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    Mika Shapiro-Reznik

    Full Text Available The neurexin genes (NRXN1/2/3 encode two families (α and β of highly polymorphic presynaptic proteins that are involved in excitatory/inhibitory synaptic balance. Recent studies indicate that neuronal activation and memory formation affect NRXN1/2/3α expression and alternative splicing at splice sites 3 and 4 (SS#3/SS#4. Neurons in the biological clock residing in the suprachiasmatic nuclei of the hypothalamus (SCN act as self-sustained oscillators, generating rhythms in gene expression and electrical activity, to entrain circadian bodily rhythms to the 24 hours day/night cycles. Cell autonomous oscillations in NRXN1/2/3α expression and SS#3/SS#4 exons splicing and their links to rhythms in excitatory/inhibitory synaptic balance in the circadian clock were explored. NRXN1/2/3α expression and SS#3/SS#4 splicing, levels of neurexin-2α and the synaptic scaffolding proteins PSD-95 and gephyrin (representing excitatory and inhibitory synapses, respectively were studied in mRNA and protein extracts obtained from SCN of C3H/J mice at different times of the 24 hours day/night cycle. Further studies explored the circadian oscillations in these components and causality relationships in immortalized rat SCN2.2 cells. Diurnal rhythms in mNRXN1α and mNRXN2α transcription, SS#3/SS#4 exon-inclusion and PSD-95 gephyrin and neurexin-2α levels were found in the SCN in vivo. No such rhythms were found with mNRXN3α. SCN2.2 cells also exhibited autonomous circadian rhythms in rNRXN1/2 expression SS#3/SS#4 exon inclusion and PSD-95, gephyrin and neurexin-2α levels. rNRXN3α and rNRXN1/2β were not expressed. Causal relationships were demonstrated, by use of specific siRNAs, between rNRXN2α SS#3 exon included transcripts and gephyrin levels in the SCN2.2 cells. These results show for the first time dynamic, cell autonomous, diurnal rhythms in expression and splicing of NRXN1/2 and subsequent effects on the expression of neurexin-2α and postsynaptic

  3. Loss of CDKL5 in Glutamatergic Neurons Disrupts Hippocampal Microcircuitry and Leads to Memory Impairment in Mice.

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    Tang, Sheng; Wang, I-Ting Judy; Yue, Cuiyong; Takano, Hajime; Terzic, Barbara; Pance, Katarina; Lee, Jun Y; Cui, Yue; Coulter, Douglas A; Zhou, Zhaolan

    2017-08-02

    Cyclin-dependent kinase-like 5 (CDKL5) deficiency is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by epileptic seizures, severe intellectual disability, and autistic features. Mice lacking CDKL5 display multiple behavioral abnormalities reminiscent of the disorder, but the cellular origins of these phenotypes remain unclear. Here, we find that ablating CDKL5 expression specifically from forebrain glutamatergic neurons impairs hippocampal-dependent memory in male conditional knock-out mice. Hippocampal pyramidal neurons lacking CDKL5 show decreased dendritic complexity but a trend toward increased spine density. This morphological change is accompanied by an increase in the frequency of spontaneous miniature EPSCs and interestingly, miniature IPSCs. Using voltage-sensitive dye imaging to interrogate the evoked response of the CA1 microcircuit, we find that CA1 pyramidal neurons lacking CDKL5 show hyperexcitability in their dendritic domain that is constrained by elevated inhibition in a spatially and temporally distinct manner. These results suggest a novel role for CDKL5 in the regulation of synaptic function and uncover an intriguing microcircuit mechanism underlying impaired learning and memory. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Cyclin-dependent kinase-like 5 (CDKL5) deficiency is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder caused by mutations in the CDKL5 gene. Although Cdkl5 constitutive knock-out mice have recapitulated key aspects of human symptomatology, the cellular origins of CDKL5 deficiency-related phenotypes are unknown. Here, using conditional knock-out mice, we show that hippocampal-dependent learning and memory deficits in CDKL5 deficiency have origins in glutamatergic neurons of the forebrain and that loss of CDKL5 results in the enhancement of synaptic transmission and disruptions in neural circuit dynamics in a spatially and temporally specific manner. Our findings demonstrate that CDKL5 is an important regulator of synaptic function in glutamatergic neurons and

  4. Synapse geometry and receptor dynamics modulate synaptic strength.

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    Dominik Freche

    Full Text Available Synaptic transmission relies on several processes, such as the location of a released vesicle, the number and type of receptors, trafficking between the postsynaptic density (PSD and extrasynaptic compartment, as well as the synapse organization. To study the impact of these parameters on excitatory synaptic transmission, we present a computational model for the fast AMPA-receptor mediated synaptic current. We show that in addition to the vesicular release probability, due to variations in their release locations and the AMPAR distribution, the postsynaptic current amplitude has a large variance, making a synapse an intrinsic unreliable device. We use our model to examine our experimental data recorded from CA1 mice hippocampal slices to study the differences between mEPSC and evoked EPSC variance. The synaptic current but not the coefficient of variation is maximal when the active zone where vesicles are released is apposed to the PSD. Moreover, we find that for certain type of synapses, receptor trafficking can affect the magnitude of synaptic depression. Finally, we demonstrate that perisynaptic microdomains located outside the PSD impacts synaptic transmission by regulating the number of desensitized receptors and their trafficking to the PSD. We conclude that geometrical modifications, reorganization of the PSD or perisynaptic microdomains modulate synaptic strength, as the mechanisms underlying long-term plasticity.

  5. Excitatory components of the mammalian locomotor CPG

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kiehn, Ole; Quinlan, Katharina A.; Restrepo, Carlos Ernesto

    2008-01-01

    Locomotion in mammals is to a large degree controlled directly by intrinsic spinal networks, called central pattern generators (CPGs). The overall function of these networks is governed by interaction between inhibitory and excitatory neurons. In the present review, we will discuss recent finding...

  6. Optogenetic acidification of synaptic vesicles and lysosomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rost, Benjamin R; Schneider, Franziska; Grauel, M Katharina; Wozny, Christian; Bentz, Claudia; Blessing, Anja; Rosenmund, Tanja; Jentsch, Thomas J; Schmitz, Dietmar; Hegemann, Peter; Rosenmund, Christian

    2015-12-01

    Acidification is required for the function of many intracellular organelles, but methods to acutely manipulate their intraluminal pH have not been available. Here we present a targeting strategy to selectively express the light-driven proton pump Arch3 on synaptic vesicles. Our new tool, pHoenix, can functionally replace endogenous proton pumps, enabling optogenetic control of vesicular acidification and neurotransmitter accumulation. Under physiological conditions, glutamatergic vesicles are nearly full, as additional vesicle acidification with pHoenix only slightly increased the quantal size. By contrast, we found that incompletely filled vesicles exhibited a lower release probability than full vesicles, suggesting preferential exocytosis of vesicles with high transmitter content. Our subcellular targeting approach can be transferred to other organelles, as demonstrated for a pHoenix variant that allows light-activated acidification of lysosomes.

  7. Leucine-rich repeat-containing synaptic adhesion molecules as organizers of synaptic specificity and diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schroeder, Anna; de Wit, Joris

    2018-04-09

    The brain harbors billions of neurons that form distinct neural circuits with exquisite specificity. Specific patterns of connectivity between distinct neuronal cell types permit the transfer and computation of information. The molecular correlates that give rise to synaptic specificity are incompletely understood. Recent studies indicate that cell-surface molecules are important determinants of cell type identity and suggest that these are essential players in the specification of synaptic connectivity. Leucine-rich repeat (LRR)-containing adhesion molecules in particular have emerged as key organizers of excitatory and inhibitory synapses. Here, we discuss emerging evidence that LRR proteins regulate the assembly of specific connectivity patterns across neural circuits, and contribute to the diverse structural and functional properties of synapses, two key features that are critical for the proper formation and function of neural circuits.

  8. Wavelet analysis of nonstationary fluctuations of Monte Carlo-simulated excitatory postsynaptic currents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aristizabal, F; Glavinovic, M I

    2003-10-01

    currents is not highly accurate owing to the varying number of the activatable AMPA channels caused by desensitization. The spatial nonuniformity of open, bound, and desensitized AMPA channels, and the time dependence and spatial nonuniformity of the glutamate concentration in the synaptic cleft, further reduce the accuracy of estimates of the number of AMPA channels from synaptic currents. In conclusion, wavelet analysis of nonstationary fluctuations of patch and synaptic currents expands our ability to determine accurately the variance and frequency of current fluctuations, demonstrates the limits of applicability of techniques currently used to evaluate the single channel current and number of AMPA channels, and offers new insights into the mechanisms involved in the generation of unitary quantal events at excitatory central synapses.

  9. Mice deficient of glutamatergic signaling from intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells exhibit abnormal circadian photoentrainment.

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    Nicole Purrier

    Full Text Available Several aspects of behavior and physiology, such as sleep and wakefulness, blood pressure, body temperature, and hormone secretion exhibit daily oscillations known as circadian rhythms. These circadian rhythms are orchestrated by an intrinsic biological clock in the suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN of the hypothalamus which is adjusted to the daily environmental cycles of day and night by the process of photoentrainment. In mammals, the neuronal signal for photoentrainment arises from a small subset of intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs that send a direct projection to the SCN. ipRGCs also mediate other non-image-forming (NIF visual responses such as negative masking of locomotor activity by light, and the pupillary light reflex (PLR via co-release of neurotransmitters glutamate and pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating peptide (PACAP from their synaptic terminals. The relative contribution of each neurotransmitter system for the circadian photoentrainment and other NIF visual responses is still unresolved. We investigated the role of glutamatergic neurotransmission for circadian photoentrainment and NIF behaviors by selective ablation of ipRGC glutamatergic synaptic transmission in mice. Mutant mice displayed delayed re-entrainment to a 6 h phase shift (advance or delay in the light cycle and incomplete photoentrainment in a symmetrical skeleton photoperiod regimen (1 h light pulses between 11 h dark periods. Circadian rhythmicity in constant darkness also was reduced in some mutant mice. Other NIF responses such as the PLR and negative masking responses to light were also partially attenuated. Overall, these results suggest that glutamate from ipRGCs drives circadian photoentrainment and negative masking responses to light.

  10. Loss of MeCP2 disrupts cell autonomous and autocrine BDNF signaling in mouse glutamatergic neurons

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    Sampathkumar, Charanya; Wu, Yuan-Ju; Vadhvani, Mayur; Trimbuch, Thorsten; Eickholt, Britta; Rosenmund, Christian

    2016-01-01

    Mutations in the MECP2 gene cause the neurodevelopmental disorder Rett syndrome (RTT). Previous studies have shown that altered MeCP2 levels result in aberrant neurite outgrowth and glutamatergic synapse formation. However, causal molecular mechanisms are not well understood since MeCP2 is known to regulate transcription of a wide range of target genes. Here, we describe a key role for a constitutive BDNF feed forward signaling pathway in regulating synaptic response, general growth and differentiation of glutamatergic neurons. Chronic block of TrkB receptors mimics the MeCP2 deficiency in wildtype glutamatergic neurons, while re-expression of BDNF quantitatively rescues MeCP2 deficiency. We show that BDNF acts cell autonomous and autocrine, as wildtype neurons are not capable of rescuing growth deficits in neighboring MeCP2 deficient neurons in vitro and in vivo. These findings are relevant for understanding RTT pathophysiology, wherein wildtype and mutant neurons are intermixed throughout the nervous system. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.19374.001 PMID:27782879

  11. Layer- and Cell Type-Specific Modulation of Excitatory Neuronal Activity in the Neocortex

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    Gabriele Radnikow

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available From an anatomical point of view the neocortex is subdivided into up to six layers depending on the cortical area. This subdivision has been described already by Meynert and Brodmann in the late 19/early 20. century and is mainly based on cytoarchitectonic features such as the size and location of the pyramidal cell bodies. Hence, cortical lamination is originally an anatomical concept based on the distribution of excitatory neuron. However, it has become apparent in recent years that apart from the layer-specific differences in morphological features, many functional properties of neurons are also dependent on cortical layer or cell type. Such functional differences include changes in neuronal excitability and synaptic activity by neuromodulatory transmitters. Many of these neuromodulators are released from axonal afferents from subcortical brain regions while others are released intrinsically. In this review we aim to describe layer- and cell-type specific differences in the effects of neuromodulator receptors in excitatory neurons in layers 2–6 of different cortical areas. We will focus on the neuromodulator systems using adenosine, acetylcholine, dopamine, and orexin/hypocretin as examples because these neuromodulator systems show important differences in receptor type and distribution, mode of release and functional mechanisms and effects. We try to summarize how layer- and cell type-specific neuromodulation may affect synaptic signaling in cortical microcircuits.

  12. The influence of single bursts vs. single spikes at excitatory dendrodendritic synapses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masurkar, Arjun V.; Chen, Wei R.

    2015-01-01

    The synchronization of neuronal activity is thought to enhance information processing. There is much evidence supporting rhythmically bursting external tufted cells (ETCs) of the rodent olfactory bulb glomeruli coordinating the activation of glomerular interneurons and mitral cells via dendrodendritic excitation. However, as bursting has variable significance at axodendritic cortical synapses, it is not clear if ETC bursting imparts a specific functional advantage over the preliminary spike in dendrodendritic synaptic networks. To answer this question, we investigated the influence of single ETC bursts and spikes with the in-vitro rat olfactory bulb preparation at different levels of processing, via calcium imaging of presynaptic ETC dendrites, dual electrical recording of ETC–interneuron synaptic pairs, and multicellular calcium imaging of ETC-induced population activity. Our findings supported single ETC bursts, vs. single spikes, driving robust presynaptic calcium signaling, which in turn was associated with profound extension of the initial monosynaptic spike-driven dendrodendritic excitatory postsynaptic potential. This extension could be driven by either the spike-dependent or spike-independent components of the burst. At the population level, burst-induced excitation was more widespread and reliable compared with single spikes. This further supports the ETC network, in part due to a functional advantage of bursting at excitatory dendrodendritic synapses, coordinating synchronous activity at behaviorally relevant frequencies related to odor processing in vivo. PMID:22277089

  13. The influence of single bursts versus single spikes at excitatory dendrodendritic synapses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masurkar, Arjun V; Chen, Wei R

    2012-02-01

    The synchronization of neuronal activity is thought to enhance information processing. There is much evidence supporting rhythmically bursting external tufted cells (ETCs) of the rodent olfactory bulb glomeruli coordinating the activation of glomerular interneurons and mitral cells via dendrodendritic excitation. However, as bursting has variable significance at axodendritic cortical synapses, it is not clear if ETC bursting imparts a specific functional advantage over the preliminary spike in dendrodendritic synaptic networks. To answer this question, we investigated the influence of single ETC bursts and spikes with the in vitro rat olfactory bulb preparation at different levels of processing, via calcium imaging of presynaptic ETC dendrites, dual electrical recording of ETC -interneuron synaptic pairs, and multicellular calcium imaging of ETC-induced population activity. Our findings supported single ETC bursts, versus single spikes, driving robust presynaptic calcium signaling, which in turn was associated with profound extension of the initial monosynaptic spike-driven dendrodendritic excitatory postsynaptic potential. This extension could be driven by either the spike-dependent or spike-independent components of the burst. At the population level, burst-induced excitation was more widespread and reliable compared with single spikes. This further supports the ETC network, in part due to a functional advantage of bursting at excitatory dendrodendritic synapses, coordinating synchronous activity at behaviorally relevant frequencies related to odor processing in vivo. © 2012 The Authors. European Journal of Neuroscience © 2012 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  14. New players tip the scales in the balance between excitatory and inhibitory synapses

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    El-Husseini Alaa

    2005-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Synaptogenesis is a highly controlled process, involving a vast array of players which include cell adhesion molecules, scaffolding and signaling proteins, neurotransmitter receptors and proteins associated with the synaptic vesicle machinery. These molecules cooperate in an intricate manner on both the pre- and postsynaptic sides to orchestrate the precise assembly of neuronal contacts. This is an amazing feat considering that a single neuron receives tens of thousands of synaptic inputs but virtually no mismatch between pre- and postsynaptic components occur in vivo. One crucial aspect of synapse formation is whether a nascent synapse will develop into an excitatory or inhibitory contact. The tight control of a balance between the types of synapses formed regulates the overall neuronal excitability, and is thus critical for normal brain function and plasticity. However, little is known about how this balance is achieved. This review discusses recent findings which provide clues to how neurons may control excitatory and inhibitory synapse formation, with focus on the involvement of the neuroligin family and PSD-95 in this process.

  15. An excitatory paraventricular nucleus to AgRP neuron circuit that drives hunger.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krashes, Michael J; Shah, Bhavik P; Madara, Joseph C; Olson, David P; Strochlic, David E; Garfield, Alastair S; Vong, Linh; Pei, Hongjuan; Watabe-Uchida, Mitsuko; Uchida, Naoshige; Liberles, Stephen D; Lowell, Bradford B

    2014-03-13

    Hunger is a hard-wired motivational state essential for survival. Agouti-related peptide (AgRP)-expressing neurons in the arcuate nucleus (ARC) at the base of the hypothalamus are crucial to the control of hunger. They are activated by caloric deficiency and, when naturally or artificially stimulated, they potently induce intense hunger and subsequent food intake. Consistent with their obligatory role in regulating appetite, genetic ablation or chemogenetic inhibition of AgRP neurons decreases feeding. Excitatory input to AgRP neurons is important in caloric-deficiency-induced activation, and is notable for its remarkable degree of caloric-state-dependent synaptic plasticity. Despite the important role of excitatory input, its source(s) has been unknown. Here, through the use of Cre-recombinase-enabled, cell-specific neuron mapping techniques in mice, we have discovered strong excitatory drive that, unexpectedly, emanates from the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus, specifically from subsets of neurons expressing thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH) and pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating polypeptide (PACAP, also known as ADCYAP1). Chemogenetic stimulation of these afferent neurons in sated mice markedly activates AgRP neurons and induces intense feeding. Conversely, acute inhibition in mice with caloric-deficiency-induced hunger decreases feeding. Discovery of these afferent neurons capable of triggering hunger advances understanding of how this intense motivational state is regulated.

  16. Emergence of Functional Specificity in Balanced Networks with Synaptic Plasticity.

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    Sadra Sadeh

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available In rodent visual cortex, synaptic connections between orientation-selective neurons are unspecific at the time of eye opening, and become to some degree functionally specific only later during development. An explanation for this two-stage process was proposed in terms of Hebbian plasticity based on visual experience that would eventually enhance connections between neurons with similar response features. For this to work, however, two conditions must be satisfied: First, orientation selective neuronal responses must exist before specific recurrent synaptic connections can be established. Second, Hebbian learning must be compatible with the recurrent network dynamics contributing to orientation selectivity, and the resulting specific connectivity must remain stable for unspecific background activity. Previous studies have mainly focused on very simple models, where the receptive fields of neurons were essentially determined by feedforward mechanisms, and where the recurrent network was small, lacking the complex recurrent dynamics of large-scale networks of excitatory and inhibitory neurons. Here we studied the emergence of functionally specific connectivity in large-scale recurrent networks with synaptic plasticity. Our results show that balanced random networks, which already exhibit highly selective responses at eye opening, can develop feature-specific connectivity if appropriate rules of synaptic plasticity are invoked within and between excitatory and inhibitory populations. If these conditions are met, the initial orientation selectivity guides the process of Hebbian learning and, as a result, functionally specific and a surplus of bidirectional connections emerge. Our results thus demonstrate the cooperation of synaptic plasticity and recurrent dynamics in large-scale functional networks with realistic receptive fields, highlight the role of inhibition as a critical element in this process, and paves the road for further computational

  17. Synaptic Plasticity, Dementia and Alzheimer Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skaper, Stephen D; Facci, Laura; Zusso, Morena; Giusti, Pietro

    2017-01-01

    Neuroplasticity is not only shaped by learning and memory but is also a mediator of responses to neuron attrition and injury (compensatory plasticity). As an ongoing process it reacts to neuronal cell activity and injury, death, and genesis, which encompasses the modulation of structural and functional processes of axons, dendrites, and synapses. The range of structural elements that comprise plasticity includes long-term potentiation (a cellular correlate of learning and memory), synaptic efficacy and remodelling, synaptogenesis, axonal sprouting and dendritic remodelling, and neurogenesis and recruitment. Degenerative diseases of the human brain continue to pose one of biomedicine's most intractable problems. Research on human neurodegeneration is now moving from descriptive to mechanistic analyses. At the same time, it is increasing apparently that morphological lesions traditionally used by neuropathologists to confirm post-mortem clinical diagnosis might furnish us with an experimentally tractable handle to understand causative pathways. Consider the aging-dependent neurodegenerative disorder Alzheimer's disease (AD) which is characterised at the neuropathological level by deposits of insoluble amyloid β-peptide (Aβ) in extracellular plaques and aggregated tau protein, which is found largely in the intracellular neurofibrillary tangles. We now appreciate that mild cognitive impairment in early AD may be due to synaptic dysfunction caused by accumulation of non-fibrillar, oligomeric Aβ, occurring well in advance of evident widespread synaptic loss and neurodegeneration. Soluble Aβ oligomers can adversely affect synaptic structure and plasticity at extremely low concentrations, although the molecular substrates by which synaptic memory mechanisms are disrupted remain to be fully elucidated. The dendritic spine constitutes a primary locus of excitatory synaptic transmission in the mammalian central nervous system. These structures protruding from dendritic

  18. Mechanism of the modulating action of met-enkephalin on glutamatergic synaptic transmission

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kuznetsov, V.I.; Godukhin, O.V.

    1985-01-01

    The authors show that the inhibiting effect of met-enkephalin on the glutamate-induced responses of the neurons of the neostriatum may be due to the inhibiting influence of the opioid peptide on the binding of glutamate to its postsynaptic receptors. The authors extracted the striatum from the brains of Wistar rats (100-150 g) and homogenized in 20 volumes of 0.32 sucrose. The homogenate was centrifuged at 900g for 10 min. The supernatant was removed and centrifuged at 20,000g for 40 min. The precipitate obtained (P2-fraction) was subjected to hypoosmotic shock in de-ionized water and recentrifuged at 20,000g for 30 min. The precipitate, containing the fraction of plasma membranes, was suspended in 50 ml of Tris-HCl, pH 7.4, to a protein concentration of 1-2 mg/ml, and used in experiments on the binding of [ 3 H]glutamate on the same day. To determine the binding of [ 3 H]glutamate, 20 microliters of [ 3 H]glutamate (specific activity 29 Ci/mmole), 20 microliters of the membrane suspension, 40 microliters of (0.5 x 10 -8 -10 -7 M) met-enkephalin, and 100 microliters of Tris-buffer were introduced into 1.5 ml polyethylene test tubes. The final concentration of [ 3 H]glutamate in solution was 10 -8 -4 x 10 -7 M. Non-specific binding was determined in the presence of 10 -3 M glutamate. The membranes were incubated with a solution of [ 3 H]glutamate at 20 0 C for 30 min

  19. Upregulation of transmitter release probability improves a conversion of synaptic analogue signals into neuronal digital spikes

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-01-01

    Action potentials at the neurons and graded signals at the synapses are primary codes in the brain. In terms of their functional interaction, the studies were focused on the influence of presynaptic spike patterns on synaptic activities. How the synapse dynamics quantitatively regulates the encoding of postsynaptic digital spikes remains unclear. We investigated this question at unitary glutamatergic synapses on cortical GABAergic neurons, especially the quantitative influences of release probability on synapse dynamics and neuronal encoding. Glutamate release probability and synaptic strength are proportionally upregulated by presynaptic sequential spikes. The upregulation of release probability and the efficiency of probability-driven synaptic facilitation are strengthened by elevating presynaptic spike frequency and Ca2+. The upregulation of release probability improves spike capacity and timing precision at postsynaptic neuron. These results suggest that the upregulation of presynaptic glutamate release facilitates a conversion of synaptic analogue signals into digital spikes in postsynaptic neurons, i.e., a functional compatibility between presynaptic and postsynaptic partners. PMID:22852823

  20. Synaptic activity and bioenergy homeostasis: implications in brain trauma and neurodegenerative diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natasha eKhatri

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Powered by glucose metabolism, the brain is the most energy-demanding organ in our body, accounting for a quarter of total oxygen consumption. Adequate ATP production and regulation of the metabolic processes are essential for the maintenance of synaptic transmission and neuronal function. Glutamatergic synaptic activity utilizes the largest portion of bioenergy for synaptic events including neurotransmitter synthesis, vesicle recycling, and most importantly the postsynaptic activities leading to channel activation and rebalancing of ionic gradients. Bioenergy homeostasis is coupled with synaptic function via activities of the sodium pumps, glutamate transporters, glucose transport and mitochondria translocation. Energy insufficiency will be sensed by the AMP-activated dependent protein kinase (AMPK, a master metabolic regulator that stimulates the catalytic process to enhance energy production. A decline in energy supply and a disruption in bioenergy homeostasis play a critical role in multiple neuropathological conditions including ischemia, stroke and neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s disease and traumatic brain injuries.

  1. An N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor mediated large, low-frequency, spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic current in neonatal rat spinal dorsal horn neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomson, L M; Zeng, J; Terman, G W

    2006-09-01

    Examples of spontaneous oscillating neural activity contributing to both pathological and physiological states are abundant throughout the CNS. Here we report a spontaneous oscillating intermittent synaptic current located in lamina I of the neonatal rat spinal cord dorsal horn. The spontaneous oscillating intermittent synaptic current is characterized by its large amplitude, slow decay time, and low-frequency. We demonstrate that post-synaptic N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) mediate the spontaneous oscillating intermittent synaptic current, as it is inhibited by magnesium, bath-applied d-2-amino-5-phosphonovalerate (APV), or intracellular MK-801. The NR2B subunit of the NMDAR appears important to this phenomenon, as the NR2B subunit selective NMDAR antagonist, alpha-(4-hydroxphenyl)-beta-methyl-4-benzyl-1-piperidineethanol tartrate (ifenprodil), also partially inhibited the spontaneous oscillating intermittent synaptic current. Inhibition of spontaneous glutamate release by the AMPA/kainate receptor antagonist 6-cyano-7-nitroquinoxaline-2,3-dione (CNQX) or the mu-opioid receptor agonist [D-Ala2, N-Me-Phe4, Gly5] enkephalin-ol (DAMGO) inhibited the spontaneous oscillating intermittent synaptic current frequency. Marked inhibition of spontaneous oscillating intermittent synaptic current frequency by tetrodotoxin (TTX), but not post-synaptic N-(2,6-dimethylphenylcarbamoylmethyl)triethylammonium bromide (QX-314), suggests that the glutamate release important to the spontaneous oscillating intermittent synaptic current is dependent on active neural processes. Conversely, increasing dorsal horn synaptic glutamate release by GABAA or glycine inhibition increased spontaneous oscillating intermittent synaptic current frequency. Moreover, inhibiting glutamate transporters with threo-beta-benzyloxyaspartic acid (DL-TBOA) increased spontaneous oscillating intermittent synaptic current frequency and decay time. A possible functional role of this spontaneous NMDAR

  2. Effects of monomethylarsonic and monomethylarsonous acid on evoked synaptic potentials in hippocampal slices of adult and young rats

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Krueger, Katharina; Straub, Heidrun; Hirner, Alfred V.; Hippler, Joerg; Binding, Norbert; Musshoff, Ulrich

    2009-01-01

    ., Madeja, M., Hartmann, L.M., Hirner, A.V., Binding, N., Muβhoff, U., 2006a. Blockade and enhancement of glutamate receptor responses in Xenopus oocytes by methylated arsenicals. Arch. Toxicol. 80, 492-501). These effects are probably not mediated by changes in cell excitability or in presynaptic glutamate release rates, since antidromically induced population spikes and paired-pulse facilitation failed to show any MMA III effect. The impairment of the excitatory CA1 synapse is more likely caused by the action of MMA III on postsynaptic glutamatergic receptors and may be jointly responsible for dysfunctions of cognitive effects in arsenic toxicity

  3. Neuroimaging markers of glutamatergic and GABAergic systems in drug addiction: Relationships to resting-state functional connectivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moeller, Scott J; London, Edythe D; Northoff, Georg

    2016-02-01

    Drug addiction is characterized by widespread abnormalities in brain function and neurochemistry, including drug-associated effects on concentrations of the excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmitters glutamate and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), respectively. In healthy individuals, these neurotransmitters drive the resting state, a default condition of brain function also disrupted in addiction. Here, our primary goal was to review in vivo magnetic resonance spectroscopy and positron emission tomography studies that examined markers of glutamate and GABA abnormalities in human drug addiction. Addicted individuals tended to show decreases in these markers compared with healthy controls, but findings also varied by individual characteristics (e.g., abstinence length). Interestingly, select corticolimbic brain regions showing glutamatergic and/or GABAergic abnormalities have been similarly implicated in resting-state functional connectivity deficits in drug addiction. Thus, our secondary goals were to provide a brief review of this resting-state literature, and an initial rationale for the hypothesis that abnormalities in glutamatergic and/or GABAergic neurotransmission may underlie resting-state functional deficits in drug addiction. In doing so, we suggest future research directions and possible treatment implications. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Excitatory inputs to four types of spinocerebellar tract neurons in the cat and the rat thoraco-lumbar spinal cord

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shrestha, Sony Shakya; Bannatyne, B Anne; Jankowska, Elzbieta; Hammar, Ingela; Nilsson, Elin; Maxwell, David J

    2012-01-01

    The cerebellum receives information from the hindlimbs through several populations of spinocerebellar tract neurons. Although the role of these neurons has been established in electrophysiological experiments, the relative contribution of afferent fibres and central neurons to their excitatory input has only been estimated approximately so far. Taking advantage of differences in the immunohistochemistry of glutamatergic terminals of peripheral afferents and of central neurons (with vesicular glutamate transporters VGLUT1 or VGLUT2, respectively), we compared sources of excitatory input to four populations of spinocerebellar neurons in the thoraco-lumbar spinal cord: dorsal spinocerebellar tract neurons located in Clarke's column (ccDSCT) and in the dorsal horn (dhDSCT) and ventral spinocerebellar tract (VSCT) neurons including spinal border (SB) neurons. This was done on 22 electrophysiologically identified intracellularly labelled neurons in cats and on 80 neurons labelled by retrograde transport of cholera toxin b subunit injected into the cerebellum of rats. In both species distribution of antibodies against VGLUT1 and VGLUT2 on SB neurons (which have dominating inhibitory input from limb muscles), revealed very few VGLUT1 contacts and remarkably high numbers of VGLUT2 contacts. In VSCT neurons with excitatory afferent input, the number of VGLUT1 contacts was relatively high although VGLUT2 contacts likewise dominated, while the proportions of VGLUT1 and VGLUT2 immunoreactive terminals were the reverse on the two populations of DSCT neurons. These findings provide morphological evidence that SB neurons principally receive excitatory inputs from central neurons and provide the cerebellum with information regarding central neuronal activity. PMID:22371473

  5. Alterations of excitatory transmission in the lateral amygdala during expression and extinction of fear memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Hui-Ching; Mao, Sheng-Chun; Su, Chun-Lin; Gean, Po-Wu

    2010-04-01

    Understanding the neurophysiology of fear extinction has important implications for the treatment of post-traumatic stress disorders. Here we report that fear conditioning resulted in an increase in AMPA/NMDA ratio as well as depression of paired-pulse facilitation (PPF) in neurons of the lateral nucleus of amygdala. These conditioning-induced changes in synaptic transmission were not affected by extinction training. D-cycloserine (DCS), a partial agonist at the glycine-binding site of the NMDA receptor, facilitated extinction and reversed the increase in AMPA/NMDA ratio without altering the depression of PPF when administered before extinction training. Extinction training, however, significantly increased the frequency and amplitude of miniature inhibitory post-synaptic currents and these effects were unaffected by the DCS treatment. Disruption of AMPA receptor endocytosis with a synthetic peptide containing a short C-terminal sequence of GluR2 (869YKEGYNVYG877, GluR23Y) specifically blocked DCS-induced reversal of AMPA/NMDA ratio and the facilitation of extinction. These results suggest that extinction training mainly increases inhibitory transmission leaving conditioning-induced excitatory association unaltered. DCS does not affect inhibitory transmission but reverses the conditioning-induced post-synaptic memory trace when administered before extinction training.

  6. APP Homodimers Transduce an Amyloid-β-Mediated Increase in Release Probability at Excitatory Synapses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hilla Fogel

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Accumulation of amyloid-β peptides (Aβ, the proteolytic products of the amyloid precursor protein (APP, induces a variety of synaptic dysfunctions ranging from hyperactivity to depression that are thought to cause cognitive decline in Alzheimer’s disease. While depression of synaptic transmission has been extensively studied, the mechanisms underlying synaptic hyperactivity remain unknown. Here, we show that Aβ40 monomers and dimers augment release probability through local fine-tuning of APP-APP interactions at excitatory hippocampal boutons. Aβ40 binds to the APP, increases the APP homodimer fraction at the plasma membrane, and promotes APP-APP interactions. The APP activation induces structural rearrangements in the APP/Gi/o-protein complex, boosting presynaptic calcium flux and vesicle release. The APP growth-factor-like domain (GFLD mediates APP-APP conformational changes and presynaptic enhancement. Thus, the APP homodimer constitutes a presynaptic receptor that transduces signal from Aβ40 to glutamate release. Excessive APP activation may initiate a positive feedback loop, contributing to hippocampal hyperactivity in Alzheimer’s disease.

  7. Synaptic Plasticity and Nociception

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ChenJianguo

    2004-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity is one of the fields that progresses rapidly and has a lot of success in neuroscience. The two major types of synaptie plasticity: long-term potentiation ( LTP and long-term depression (LTD are thought to be the cellular mochanisms of learning and memory. Recently, accumulating evidence suggests that, besides serving as a cellular model for learning and memory, the synaptic plasticity involves in other physiological or pathophysiological processes, such as the perception of pain and the regulation of cardiovascular system. This minireview will focus on the relationship between synaptic plasticity and nociception.

  8. Banach Synaptic Algebras

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foulis, David J.; Pulmannov, Sylvia

    2018-04-01

    Using a representation theorem of Erik Alfsen, Frederic Schultz, and Erling Størmer for special JB-algebras, we prove that a synaptic algebra is norm complete (i.e., Banach) if and only if it is isomorphic to the self-adjoint part of a Rickart C∗-algebra. Also, we give conditions on a Banach synaptic algebra that are equivalent to the condition that it is isomorphic to the self-adjoint part of an AW∗-algebra. Moreover, we study some relationships between synaptic algebras and so-called generalized Hermitian algebras.

  9. Size and receptor density of glutamatergic synapses: a viewpoint from left-right asymmetry of CA3-CA1 connections

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yoshiaki Shinohara

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Synaptic plasticity is considered to be the main mechanism for learning and memory. Excitatory synapses in the cerebral cortex and hippocampus undergo plastic changes during development and in response to electric stimulation. It is widely accepted that this process is mediated by insertion and elimination of various glutamate receptors. In a series of recent investigations on left-right asymmetry of hippocampal CA3-CA1 synapses, glutamate receptor subunits have been found to have distinctive expression patterns that depend on the postsynaptic density (PSD area. Particularly notable are the GluR1 AMPA receptor subunit and NR2B NMDA receptor subunit, where receptor density has either a supra-linear (GluR1 AMPA or inverse (NR2B NMDAR relationship to the PSD area. We review current understanding of structural and physiological synaptic plasticity and propose a scheme to classify receptor subtypes by their expression pattern with respect to PSD area.

  10. Enhanced Excitatory Connectivity and Disturbed Sound Processing in the Auditory Brainstem of Fragile X Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Pino, Elisabet; Gessele, Nikodemus; Koch, Ursula

    2017-08-02

    Hypersensitivity to sounds is one of the prevalent symptoms in individuals with Fragile X syndrome (FXS). It manifests behaviorally early during development and is often used as a landmark for treatment efficacy. However, the physiological mechanisms and circuit-level alterations underlying this aberrant behavior remain poorly understood. Using the mouse model of FXS ( Fmr1 KO ), we demonstrate that functional maturation of auditory brainstem synapses is impaired in FXS. Fmr1 KO mice showed a greatly enhanced excitatory synaptic input strength in neurons of the lateral superior olive (LSO), a prominent auditory brainstem nucleus, which integrates ipsilateral excitation and contralateral inhibition to compute interaural level differences. Conversely, the glycinergic, inhibitory input properties remained unaffected. The enhanced excitation was the result of an increased number of cochlear nucleus fibers converging onto one LSO neuron, without changing individual synapse properties. Concomitantly, immunolabeling of excitatory ending markers revealed an increase in the immunolabeled area, supporting abnormally elevated excitatory input numbers. Intrinsic firing properties were only slightly enhanced. In line with the disturbed development of LSO circuitry, auditory processing was also affected in adult Fmr1 KO mice as shown with single-unit recordings of LSO neurons. These processing deficits manifested as an increase in firing rate, a broadening of the frequency response area, and a shift in the interaural level difference function of LSO neurons. Our results suggest that this aberrant synaptic development of auditory brainstem circuits might be a major underlying cause of the auditory processing deficits in FXS. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Fragile X Syndrome (FXS) is the most common inheritable form of intellectual impairment, including autism. A core symptom of FXS is extreme sensitivity to loud sounds. This is one reason why individuals with FXS tend to avoid social

  11. Inflammation subverts hippocampal synaptic plasticity in experimental multiple sclerosis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Nisticò

    Full Text Available Abnormal use-dependent synaptic plasticity is universally accepted as the main physiological correlate of memory deficits in neurodegenerative disorders. It is unclear whether synaptic plasticity deficits take place during neuroinflammatory diseases, such as multiple sclerosis (MS and its mouse model, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE. In EAE mice, we found significant alterations of synaptic plasticity rules in the hippocampus. When compared to control mice, in fact, hippocampal long-term potentiation (LTP induction was favored over long-term depression (LTD in EAE, as shown by a significant rightward shift in the frequency-synaptic response function. Notably, LTP induction was also enhanced in hippocampal slices from control mice following interleukin-1β (IL-1β perfusion, and both EAE and IL-1β inhibited GABAergic spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents (sIPSC without affecting glutamatergic transmission and AMPA/NMDA ratio. EAE was also associated with selective loss of GABAergic interneurons and with reduced gamma-frequency oscillations in the CA1 region of the hippocampus. Finally, we provided evidence that microglial activation in the EAE hippocampus was associated with IL-1β expression, and hippocampal slices from control mice incubated with activated microglia displayed alterations of GABAergic transmission similar to those seen in EAE brains, through a mechanism dependent on enhanced IL-1β signaling. These data may yield novel insights into the basis of cognitive deficits in EAE and possibly of MS.

  12. Inflammation Subverts Hippocampal Synaptic Plasticity in Experimental Multiple Sclerosis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mandolesi, Georgia; Piccinin, Sonia; Berretta, Nicola; Pignatelli, Marco; Feligioni, Marco; Musella, Alessandra; Gentile, Antonietta; Mori, Francesco; Bernardi, Giorgio; Nicoletti, Ferdinando; Mercuri, Nicola B.; Centonze, Diego

    2013-01-01

    Abnormal use-dependent synaptic plasticity is universally accepted as the main physiological correlate of memory deficits in neurodegenerative disorders. It is unclear whether synaptic plasticity deficits take place during neuroinflammatory diseases, such as multiple sclerosis (MS) and its mouse model, experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). In EAE mice, we found significant alterations of synaptic plasticity rules in the hippocampus. When compared to control mice, in fact, hippocampal long-term potentiation (LTP) induction was favored over long-term depression (LTD) in EAE, as shown by a significant rightward shift in the frequency–synaptic response function. Notably, LTP induction was also enhanced in hippocampal slices from control mice following interleukin-1β (IL-1β) perfusion, and both EAE and IL-1β inhibited GABAergic spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic currents (sIPSC) without affecting glutamatergic transmission and AMPA/NMDA ratio. EAE was also associated with selective loss of GABAergic interneurons and with reduced gamma-frequency oscillations in the CA1 region of the hippocampus. Finally, we provided evidence that microglial activation in the EAE hippocampus was associated with IL-1β expression, and hippocampal slices from control mice incubated with activated microglia displayed alterations of GABAergic transmission similar to those seen in EAE brains, through a mechanism dependent on enhanced IL-1β signaling. These data may yield novel insights into the basis of cognitive deficits in EAE and possibly of MS. PMID:23355887

  13. Synaptic activity regulates AMPA receptor trafficking through different recycling pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Ning; Jeyifous, Okunola; Munro, Charlotte; Montgomery, Johanna M; Green, William N

    2015-01-01

    Changes in glutamatergic synaptic strength in brain are dependent on AMPA-type glutamate receptor (AMPAR) recycling, which is assumed to occur through a single local pathway. In this study, we present evidence that AMPAR recycling occurs through different pathways regulated by synaptic activity. Without synaptic stimulation, most AMPARs recycled in dynamin-independent endosomes containing the GTPase, Arf6. Few AMPARs recycled in dynamin-dependent endosomes labeled by transferrin receptors (TfRs). AMPAR recycling was blocked by alterations in the GTPase, TC10, which co-localized with Arf6 endosomes. TC10 mutants that reduced AMPAR recycling had no effect on increased AMPAR levels with long-term potentiation (LTP) and little effect on decreased AMPAR levels with long-term depression. However, internalized AMPAR levels in TfR-containing recycling endosomes increased after LTP, indicating increased AMPAR recycling through the dynamin-dependent pathway with synaptic plasticity. LTP-induced AMPAR endocytosis is inconsistent with local recycling as a source of increased surface receptors, suggesting AMPARs are trafficked from other sites. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.06878.001 PMID:25970033

  14. Coping with dehydration: sympathetic activation and regulation of glutamatergic transmission in the hypothalamic PVN

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bardgett, Megan E.; Chen, Qing-Hui; Guo, Qing; Calderon, Alfredo S.; Andrade, Mary Ann

    2014-01-01

    Autonomic and endocrine profiles of chronic hypertension and heart failure resemble those of acute dehydration. Importantly, all of these conditions are associated with exaggerated sympathetic nerve activity (SNA) driven by glutamatergic activation of the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus (PVN). Here, studies sought to gain insight into mechanisms of disease by determining the role of PVN ionotropic glutamate receptors in supporting SNA and mean arterial pressure (MAP) during dehydration and by elucidating mechanisms regulating receptor activity. Blockade of PVN N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptors reduced (P dehydrated (DH) (48 h water deprivation) rats, but had no effect in euhydrated (EH) controls. Blockade of PVN α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptors had no effect in either group. NMDA in PVN caused dose-dependent increases of renal SNA and MAP in both groups, but the maximum agonist evoked response (Emax) of the renal SNA response was greater (P dehydration increases excitatory NMDA receptor tone in PVN. Reduced glial-mediated glutamate uptake was identified as a key contributing factor. Defective glutamate uptake in PVN could therefore be an important, but as yet unexplored, mechanism driving sympathetic hyperactivity in chronic cardiovascular diseases. PMID:24671240

  15. Differential Effect of Neuropeptides on Excitatory Synaptic Transmission in Human Epileptic Hippocampus

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ledri, Marco; Sorensen, Andreas T.; Madsen, Marita G.

    2015-01-01

    therapy is an evolving innovative approach that may prove useful for clinical applications. In animal models of temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE), gene therapy treatments based on viral vectors encoding NPY or galanin have been shown to effectively suppress seizures. However, how this translates to human TLE...... remains unknown. A unique possibility to validate these animal studies is provided by a surgical therapeutic approach, whereby resected epileptic tissue from temporal lobes of pharmacoresistant patients are available for neurophysiological studies in vitro. To test whether NPY and galanin have...

  16. Miniature excitatory synaptic ion currents in the earthworm Lumbricus terrestris body wall muscles

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Volkov, E. M.; Nurullin, L. F.; Nikolsky, E.; Vyskočil, František

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 56, č. 5 (2007), s. 655-658 ISSN 0862-8408 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR(CZ) IAA5011411 Grant - others:RFBR(RU) 06-04-48458; Nsh(RU) 4444.2006.4 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50110509 Keywords : ion currents * muscle cells * acetylcholine receptor Subject RIV: ED - Physiology Impact factor: 1.505, year: 2007

  17. Pathway and Cell-Specific Kappa-Opioid Receptor Modulation of Excitatory-Inhibitory Balance Differentially Gates D1 and D2 Accumbens Neuron Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tejeda, Hugo A.; Wu, Jocelyn; Kornspun, Alana R.; Pignatelli, Marco; Kashtelyan, Vadim; Krashes, Michael J.; Lowell, Brad B.; Carlezon, William A.; Bonci, Antonello

    2018-01-01

    Endogenous dynorphin signaling via the kappa-opioid receptor (KOR) in the nucleus accumbens (NAcc) powerfully mediates negative affective states and stress reactivity. Excitatory inputs from the hippocampus and amygdala play a fundamental role in shaping the activity of both NAcc D1 and D2 MSNs, which encode positive and negative motivational valences, respectively. However, a circuit-based mechanism by which KOR modulation of excitation-inhibition balance modifies D1 and D2 MSN activity is lacking. Here, we provide a comprehensive synaptic framework wherein presynaptic KOR inhibition decreases excitatory drive of D1 MSN activity by the amygdala, but not hippocampus. Conversely, presynaptic inhibition by KORs of inhibitory synapses on D2 MSNs enhances integration of excitatory drive by the amygdala and hippocampus. In conclusion, we describe a circuit-based mechanism showing differential gating of afferent control of D1 and D2 MSN activity by KORs in a pathway specific manner. PMID:28056342

  18. Increased signaling by the autism-related Engrailed-2 protein enhances dendritic branching and spine density, alters synaptic structural matching, and exaggerates protein synthesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soltani, Asma; Lebrun, Solène; Carpentier, Gilles; Zunino, Giulia; Chantepie, Sandrine; Maïza, Auriane; Bozzi, Yuri; Desnos, Claire; Darchen, François; Stettler, Olivier

    2017-01-01

    Engrailed 1 (En1) and 2 (En2) code for closely related homeoproteins acting as transcription factors and as signaling molecules that contribute to midbrain and hindbrain patterning, to development and maintenance of monoaminergic pathways, and to retinotectal wiring. En2 has been suggested to be an autism susceptibility gene and individuals with autism display an overexpression of this homeogene but the mechanisms remain unclear. We addressed in the present study the effect of exogenously added En2 on the morphology of hippocampal cells that normally express only low levels of Engrailed proteins. By means of RT-qPCR, we confirmed that En1 and En2 were expressed at low levels in hippocampus and hippocampal neurons, and observed a pronounced decrease in En2 expression at birth and during the first postnatal week, a period characterized by intense synaptogenesis. To address a putative effect of Engrailed in dendritogenesis or synaptogenesis, we added recombinant En1 or En2 proteins to hippocampal cell cultures. Both En1 and En2 treatment increased the complexity of the dendritic tree of glutamatergic neurons, but only En2 increased that of GABAergic cells. En1 increased the density of dendritic spines both in vitro and in vivo. En2 had similar but less pronounced effect on spine density. The number of mature synapses remained unchanged upon En1 treatment but was reduced by En2 treatment, as well as the area of post-synaptic densities. Finally, both En1 and En2 elevated mTORC1 activity and protein synthesis in hippocampal cells, suggesting that some effects of Engrailed proteins may require mRNA translation. Our results indicate that Engrailed proteins can play, even at low concentrations, an active role in the morphogenesis of hippocampal cells. Further, they emphasize the over-regulation of GABA cell morphology and the vulnerability of excitatory synapses in a pathological context of En2 overexpression.

  19. Increased signaling by the autism-related Engrailed-2 protein enhances dendritic branching and spine density, alters synaptic structural matching, and exaggerates protein synthesis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Asma Soltani

    Full Text Available Engrailed 1 (En1 and 2 (En2 code for closely related homeoproteins acting as transcription factors and as signaling molecules that contribute to midbrain and hindbrain patterning, to development and maintenance of monoaminergic pathways, and to retinotectal wiring. En2 has been suggested to be an autism susceptibility gene and individuals with autism display an overexpression of this homeogene but the mechanisms remain unclear. We addressed in the present study the effect of exogenously added En2 on the morphology of hippocampal cells that normally express only low levels of Engrailed proteins. By means of RT-qPCR, we confirmed that En1 and En2 were expressed at low levels in hippocampus and hippocampal neurons, and observed a pronounced decrease in En2 expression at birth and during the first postnatal week, a period characterized by intense synaptogenesis. To address a putative effect of Engrailed in dendritogenesis or synaptogenesis, we added recombinant En1 or En2 proteins to hippocampal cell cultures. Both En1 and En2 treatment increased the complexity of the dendritic tree of glutamatergic neurons, but only En2 increased that of GABAergic cells. En1 increased the density of dendritic spines both in vitro and in vivo. En2 had similar but less pronounced effect on spine density. The number of mature synapses remained unchanged upon En1 treatment but was reduced by En2 treatment, as well as the area of post-synaptic densities. Finally, both En1 and En2 elevated mTORC1 activity and protein synthesis in hippocampal cells, suggesting that some effects of Engrailed proteins may require mRNA translation. Our results indicate that Engrailed proteins can play, even at low concentrations, an active role in the morphogenesis of hippocampal cells. Further, they emphasize the over-regulation of GABA cell morphology and the vulnerability of excitatory synapses in a pathological context of En2 overexpression.

  20. Glutamatergic and GABAergic gene sets in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder: association to overlapping traits in ADHD and autism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naaijen, J; Bralten, J; Poelmans, G; Glennon, J C; Franke, B; Buitelaar, J K

    2017-01-10

    Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and autism spectrum disorders (ASD) often co-occur. Both are highly heritable; however, it has been difficult to discover genetic risk variants. Glutamate and GABA are main excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmitters in the brain; their balance is essential for proper brain development and functioning. In this study we investigated the role of glutamate and GABA genetics in ADHD severity, autism symptom severity and inhibitory performance, based on gene set analysis, an approach to investigate multiple genetic variants simultaneously. Common variants within glutamatergic and GABAergic genes were investigated using the MAGMA software in an ADHD case-only sample (n=931), in which we assessed ASD symptoms and response inhibition on a Stop task. Gene set analysis for ADHD symptom severity, divided into inattention and hyperactivity/impulsivity symptoms, autism symptom severity and inhibition were performed using principal component regression analyses. Subsequently, gene-wide association analyses were performed. The glutamate gene set showed an association with severity of hyperactivity/impulsivity (P=0.009), which was robust to correcting for genome-wide association levels. The GABA gene set showed nominally significant association with inhibition (P=0.04), but this did not survive correction for multiple comparisons. None of single gene or single variant associations was significant on their own. By analyzing multiple genetic variants within candidate gene sets together, we were able to find genetic associations supporting the involvement of excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmitter systems in ADHD and ASD symptom severity in ADHD.

  1. Genetic targeting of NRXN2 in mice unveils role in excitatory cortical synapse function and social behaviors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gesche eBorn

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Human genetics has identified rare copy number variations and deleterious mutations for all neurexin genes (NRXN1-3 in patients with neurodevelopmental diseases, and electrophysiological recordings in animal brains have shown that Nrxns are important for synaptic transmission. While several mouse models for Nrxn1α inactivation have previously been studied for behavioral changes, very little information is available for other variants. Here, we validate that mice lacking Nrxn2α exhibit behavioral abnormalities, characterized by social interaction deficits and increased anxiety-like behavior, which partially overlap, partially differ from Nrxn1α mutant behaviors. Using patch-clamp recordings in Nrxn2α knockout brains, we observe reduced spontaneous transmitter release at excitatory synapses in the neocortex. We also analyse at this cellular level a novel NRXN2 mouse model that carries a combined deletion of Nrxn2α and Nrxn2β. Electrophysiological analysis of this Nrxn2-mutant mouse shows surprisingly similar defects of excitatory release to Nrxn2α, indicating that the β-variant of Nrxn2 has no strong function in basic transmission at these synapses. Inhibitory transmission as well as synapse densities and ultrastructure remain unchanged in the neocortex of both models. Furthermore, at Nrxn2α and Nrxn2-mutant excitatory synapses we find an altered facilitation and N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR function because NMDAR-dependent decay time and NMDAR-mediated responses are reduced. As Nrxn can indirectly be linked to NMDAR via neuroligin and PSD-95, the trans-synaptic nature of this complex may help to explain occurrence of presynaptic and postsynaptic effects. Since excitatory/inhibitory imbalances and impairment of NMDAR function are alledged to have a role in autism and schizophrenia, our results support the idea of a related pathomechanism in these disorders.

  2. N-acetylcysteine modulates glutamatergic dysfunction and depressive behavior in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wright, Dean J; Gray, Laura J; Finkelstein, David I; Crouch, Peter J; Pow, David; Pang, Terence Y; Li, Shanshan; Smith, Zoe M; Francis, Paul S; Renoir, Thibault; Hannan, Anthony J

    2016-07-15

    Glutamatergic dysfunction has been implicated in the pathogenesis of depressive disorders and Huntington's disease (HD), in which depression is the most common psychiatric symptom. Synaptic glutamate homeostasis is regulated by cystine-dependent glutamate transporters, including GLT-1 and system x c - In HD, the enzyme regulating cysteine (and subsequently cystine) production, cystathionine-γ-lygase, has recently been shown to be lowered. The aim of the present study was to establish whether cysteine supplementation, using N-acetylcysteine (NAC) could ameliorate glutamate pathology through the cystine-dependent transporters, system x c - and GLT-1. We demonstrate that the R6/1 transgenic mouse model of HD has lower basal levels of cystine, and showed depressive-like behaviors in the forced-swim test. Administration of NAC reversed these behaviors. This effect was blocked by co-administration of the system x c - and GLT-1 inhibitors CPG and DHK, showing that glutamate transporter activity was required for the antidepressant effects of NAC. NAC was also able to specifically increase glutamate in HD mice, in a glutamate transporter-dependent manner. These in vivo changes reflect changes in glutamate transporter protein in HD mice and human HD post-mortem tissue. Furthermore, NAC was able to rescue changes in key glutamate receptor proteins related to excitotoxicity in HD, including NMDAR2B. Thus, we have shown that baseline reductions in cysteine underlie glutamatergic dysfunction and depressive-like behavior in HD and these changes can be rescued by treatment with NAC. These findings have implications for the development of new therapeutic approaches for depressive disorders. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  3. Impact of weak excitatory synapses on chaotic transients in a diffusively coupled Morris-Lecar neuronal network

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lafranceschina, Jacopo, E-mail: jlafranceschina@alaska.edu; Wackerbauer, Renate, E-mail: rawackerbauer@alaska.edu [Department of Physics, University of Alaska, Fairbanks, Alaska 99775-5920 (United States)

    2015-01-15

    Spatiotemporal chaos collapses to either a rest state or a propagating pulse solution in a ring network of diffusively coupled, excitable Morris-Lecar neurons. Weak excitatory synapses can increase the Lyapunov exponent, expedite the collapse, and promote the collapse to the rest state rather than the pulse state. A single traveling pulse solution may no longer be asymptotic for certain combinations of network topology and (weak) coupling strengths, and initiate spatiotemporal chaos. Multiple pulses can cause chaos initiation due to diffusive and synaptic pulse-pulse interaction. In the presence of chaos initiation, intermittent spatiotemporal chaos exists until typically a collapse to the rest state.

  4. Impact of weak excitatory synapses on chaotic transients in a diffusively coupled Morris-Lecar neuronal network

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lafranceschina, Jacopo; Wackerbauer, Renate

    2015-01-01

    Spatiotemporal chaos collapses to either a rest state or a propagating pulse solution in a ring network of diffusively coupled, excitable Morris-Lecar neurons. Weak excitatory synapses can increase the Lyapunov exponent, expedite the collapse, and promote the collapse to the rest state rather than the pulse state. A single traveling pulse solution may no longer be asymptotic for certain combinations of network topology and (weak) coupling strengths, and initiate spatiotemporal chaos. Multiple pulses can cause chaos initiation due to diffusive and synaptic pulse-pulse interaction. In the presence of chaos initiation, intermittent spatiotemporal chaos exists until typically a collapse to the rest state

  5. Novel model of neuronal bioenergetics: postsynaptic utilization of glucose but not lactate correlates positively with Ca2+ signalling in cultured mouse glutamatergic neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bak, Lasse K; Obel, Linea F; Walls, Anne B; Schousboe, Arne; Faek, Sevan A A; Jajo, Farah S; Waagepetersen, Helle S

    2012-04-05

    We have previously investigated the relative roles of extracellular glucose and lactate as fuels for glutamatergic neurons during synaptic activity. The conclusion from these studies was that cultured glutamatergic neurons utilize glucose rather than lactate during NMDA (N-methyl-d-aspartate)-induced synaptic activity and that lactate alone is not able to support neurotransmitter glutamate homoeostasis. Subsequently, a model was proposed to explain these results at the cellular level. In brief, the intermittent rises in intracellular Ca2+ during activation cause influx of Ca2+ into the mitochondrial matrix thus activating the tricarboxylic acid cycle dehydrogenases. This will lead to a lower activity of the MASH (malate-aspartate shuttle), which in turn will result in anaerobic glycolysis and lactate production rather than lactate utilization. In the present work, we have investigated the effect of an ionomycin-induced increase in intracellular Ca2+ (i.e. independent of synaptic activity) on neuronal energy metabolism employing 13C-labelled glucose and lactate and subsequent mass spectrometric analysis of labelling in glutamate, alanine and lactate. The results demonstrate that glucose utilization is positively correlated with intracellular Ca2+ whereas lactate utilization is not. This result lends further support for a significant role of glucose in neuronal bioenergetics and that Ca2+ signalling may control the switch between glucose and lactate utilization during synaptic activity. Based on the results, we propose a compartmentalized CiMASH (Ca2+-induced limitation of the MASH) model that includes intracellular compartmentation of glucose and lactate metabolism. We define pre- and post-synaptic compartments metabolizing glucose and glucose plus lactate respectively in which the latter displays a positive correlation between oxidative metabolism of glucose and Ca2+ signalling.

  6. Amygdala EphB2 Signaling Regulates Glutamatergic Neuron Maturation and Innate Fear.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Xiao-Na; Liu, Xian-Dong; Zhuang, Hanyi; Henkemeyer, Mark; Yang, Jing-Yu; Xu, Nan-Jie

    2016-09-28

    The amygdala serves as emotional center to mediate innate fear behaviors that are reflected through neuronal responses to environmental aversive cues. However, the molecular mechanism underlying the initial neuron responses is poorly understood. In this study, we monitored the innate defensive responses to aversive stimuli of either elevated plus maze or predator odor in juvenile mice and found that glutamatergic neurons were activated in amygdala. Loss of EphB2, a receptor tyrosine kinase expressed in amygdala neurons, suppressed the reactions and led to defects in spine morphogenesis and fear behaviors. We further found a coupling of spinogenesis with these threat cues induced neuron activation in developing amygdala that was controlled by EphB2. A constitutively active form of EphB2 was sufficient to rescue the behavioral and morphological defects caused by ablation of ephrin-B3, a brain-enriched ligand to EphB2. These data suggest that kinase-dependent EphB2 intracellular signaling plays a major role for innate fear responses during the critical developing period, in which spinogenesis in amygdala glutamatergic neurons was involved. Generation of innate fear responses to threat as an evolutionally conserved brain feature relies on development of functional neural circuit in amygdala, but the molecular mechanism remains largely unknown. We here identify that EphB2 receptor tyrosine kinase, which is specifically expressed in glutamatergic neurons, is required for the innate fear responses in the neonatal brain. We further reveal that EphB2 mediates coordination of spinogenesis and neuron activation in amygdala during the critical period for the innate fear. EphB2 catalytic activity plays a major role for the behavior upon EphB-ephrin-B3 binding and transnucleus neuronal connections. Our work thus indicates an essential synaptic molecular signaling within amygdala that controls synapse development and helps bring about innate fear emotions in the postnatal

  7. Oscillations, complex spatiotemporal behavior, and information transport in networks of excitatory and inhibitory neurons

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Destexhe, A.

    1994-01-01

    Various types of spatiotemporal behavior are described for two-dimensional networks of excitatory and inhibitory neurons with time delayed interactions. It is described how the network behaves as several structural parameters are varied, such as the number of neurons, the connectivity, and the values of synaptic weights. A transition from spatially uniform oscillations to spatiotemporal chaos via intermittentlike behavior is observed. The properties of spatiotemporally chaotic solutions are investigated by evaluating the largest positive Lyapunov exponent and the loss of correlation with distance. Finally, properties of information transport are evaluated during uniform oscillations and spatiotemporal chaos. It is shown that the diffusion coefficient increases significantly in the spatiotemporal phase similar to the increase of transport coefficients at the onset of fluid turbulence. It is proposed that such a property should be seen in other media, such as chemical turbulence or networks of oscillators. The possibility of measuring information transport from appropriate experiments is also discussed

  8. Regulation of the Postsynaptic Compartment of Excitatory Synapses by the Actin Cytoskeleton in Health and Its Disruption in Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Holly Stefen

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Disruption of synaptic function at excitatory synapses is one of the earliest pathological changes seen in wide range of neurological diseases. The proper control of the segregation of neurotransmitter receptors at these synapses is directly correlated with the intact regulation of the postsynaptic cytoskeleton. In this review, we are discussing key factors that regulate the structure and dynamics of the actin cytoskeleton, the major cytoskeletal building block that supports the postsynaptic compartment. Special attention is given to the complex interplay of actin-associated proteins that are found in the synaptic specialization. We then discuss our current understanding of how disruption of these cytoskeletal elements may contribute to the pathological events observed in the nervous system under disease conditions with a particular focus on Alzheimer’s disease pathology.

  9. Somatodendritic and excitatory postsynaptic distribution of neuron-type dystrophin isoform, Dp40, in hippocampal neurons

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fujimoto, Takahiro; Itoh, Kyoko; Yaoi, Takeshi; Fushiki, Shinji

    2014-01-01

    Highlights: • Identification of dystrophin (Dp) shortest isoform, Dp40, is a neuron-type Dp. • Dp40 expression is temporally and differentially regulated in comparison to Dp71. • Somatodendritic and nuclear localization of Dp40. • Dp40 is localized to excitatory postsynapses. • Dp40 might play roles in dendritic and synaptic functions. - Abstract: The Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) gene produces multiple dystrophin (Dp) products due to the presence of several promoters. We previously reported the existence of a novel short isoform of Dp, Dp40, in adult mouse brain. However, the exact biochemical expression profile and cytological distribution of the Dp40 protein remain unknown. In this study, we generated a polyclonal antibody against the NH 2 -terminal region of the Dp40 and identified the expression profile of Dp40 in the mouse brain. Through an analysis using embryonic and postnatal mouse cerebrums, we found that Dp40 emerged from the early neonatal stages until adulthood, whereas Dp71, an another Dp short isoform, was highly detected in both prenatal and postnatal cerebrums. Intriguingly, relative expressions of Dp40 and Dp71 were prominent in cultured dissociated neurons and non-neuronal cells derived from mouse hippocampus, respectively. Furthermore, the immunocytological distribution of Dp40 was analyzed in dissociated cultured neurons, revealing that Dp40 is detected in the soma and its dendrites, but not in the axon. It is worthy to note that Dp40 is localized along the subplasmalemmal region of the dendritic shafts, as well as at excitatory postsynaptic sites. Thus, Dp40 was identified as a neuron-type Dp possibly involving dendritic and synaptic functions

  10. ATM and ATR play complementary roles in the behavior of excitatory and inhibitory vesicle populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Aifang; Zhao, Teng; Tse, Kai-Hei; Chow, Hei-Man; Cui, Yong; Jiang, Liwen; Du, Shengwang; Loy, Michael M T; Herrup, Karl

    2018-01-09

    ATM (ataxia-telangiectasia mutated) and ATR (ATM and Rad3-related) are large PI3 kinases whose human mutations result in complex syndromes that include a compromised DNA damage response (DDR) and prominent nervous system phenotypes. Both proteins are nuclear-localized in keeping with their DDR functions, yet both are also found in cytoplasm, including on neuronal synaptic vesicles. In ATM- or ATR-deficient neurons, spontaneous vesicle release is reduced, but a drop in ATM or ATR level also slows FM4-64 dye uptake. In keeping with this, both proteins bind to AP-2 complex components as well as to clathrin, suggesting roles in endocytosis and vesicle recycling. The two proteins play complementary roles in the DDR; ATM is engaged in the repair of double-strand breaks, while ATR deals mainly with single-strand damage. Unexpectedly, this complementarity extends to these proteins' synaptic function as well. Superresolution microscopy and coimmunoprecipitation reveal that ATM associates exclusively with excitatory (VGLUT1 + ) vesicles, while ATR associates only with inhibitory (VGAT + ) vesicles. The levels of ATM and ATR respond to each other; when ATM is deficient, ATR levels rise, and vice versa. Finally, blocking NMDA, but not GABA, receptors causes ATM levels to rise while ATR levels respond to GABA, but not NMDA, receptor blockade. Taken together, our data suggest that ATM and ATR are part of the cellular "infrastructure" that maintains the excitatory/inhibitory balance of the nervous system. This idea has important implications for the human diseases resulting from their genetic deficiency.

  11. Somatodendritic and excitatory postsynaptic distribution of neuron-type dystrophin isoform, Dp40, in hippocampal neurons

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fujimoto, Takahiro; Itoh, Kyoko, E-mail: kxi14@koto.kpu-m.ac.jp; Yaoi, Takeshi; Fushiki, Shinji

    2014-09-12

    Highlights: • Identification of dystrophin (Dp) shortest isoform, Dp40, is a neuron-type Dp. • Dp40 expression is temporally and differentially regulated in comparison to Dp71. • Somatodendritic and nuclear localization of Dp40. • Dp40 is localized to excitatory postsynapses. • Dp40 might play roles in dendritic and synaptic functions. - Abstract: The Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) gene produces multiple dystrophin (Dp) products due to the presence of several promoters. We previously reported the existence of a novel short isoform of Dp, Dp40, in adult mouse brain. However, the exact biochemical expression profile and cytological distribution of the Dp40 protein remain unknown. In this study, we generated a polyclonal antibody against the NH{sub 2}-terminal region of the Dp40 and identified the expression profile of Dp40 in the mouse brain. Through an analysis using embryonic and postnatal mouse cerebrums, we found that Dp40 emerged from the early neonatal stages until adulthood, whereas Dp71, an another Dp short isoform, was highly detected in both prenatal and postnatal cerebrums. Intriguingly, relative expressions of Dp40 and Dp71 were prominent in cultured dissociated neurons and non-neuronal cells derived from mouse hippocampus, respectively. Furthermore, the immunocytological distribution of Dp40 was analyzed in dissociated cultured neurons, revealing that Dp40 is detected in the soma and its dendrites, but not in the axon. It is worthy to note that Dp40 is localized along the subplasmalemmal region of the dendritic shafts, as well as at excitatory postsynaptic sites. Thus, Dp40 was identified as a neuron-type Dp possibly involving dendritic and synaptic functions.

  12. Integrated plasticity at inhibitory and excitatory synapses in the cerebellar circuit

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lisa eMapelli

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available The way long-term potentiation (LTP and depression (LTD are integrated within the different synapses of brain neuronal circuits is poorly understood. In order to progress beyond the identification of specific molecular mechanisms, a system in which multiple forms of plasticity can be correlated with large-scale neural processing is required. In this paper we take as an example the cerebellar network , in which extensive investigations have revealed LTP and LTD at several excitatory and inhibitory synapses. Cerebellar LTP and LTD occur in all three main cerebellar subcircuits (granular layer, molecular layer, deep cerebellar nuclei and correspondingly regulate the function of their three main neurons: granule cells (GrCs, Purkinje cells (PCs and deep cerebellar nuclear (DCN cells. All these neurons, in addition to be excited, are reached by feed-forward and feed-back inhibitory connections, in which LTP and LTD may either operate synergistically or homeostatically in order to control information flow through the circuit. Although the investigation of individual synaptic plasticities in vitro is essential to prove their existence and mechanisms, it is insufficient to generate a coherent view of their impact on network functioning in vivo. Recent computational models and cell-specific genetic mutations in mice are shedding light on how plasticity at multiple excitatory and inhibitory synapses might regulate neuronal activities in the cerebellar circuit and contribute to learning and memory and behavioral control.

  13. Integrated plasticity at inhibitory and excitatory synapses in the cerebellar circuit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mapelli, Lisa; Pagani, Martina; Garrido, Jesus A; D'Angelo, Egidio

    2015-01-01

    The way long-term potentiation (LTP) and depression (LTD) are integrated within the different synapses of brain neuronal circuits is poorly understood. In order to progress beyond the identification of specific molecular mechanisms, a system in which multiple forms of plasticity can be correlated with large-scale neural processing is required. In this paper we take as an example the cerebellar network, in which extensive investigations have revealed LTP and LTD at several excitatory and inhibitory synapses. Cerebellar LTP and LTD occur in all three main cerebellar subcircuits (granular layer, molecular layer, deep cerebellar nuclei) and correspondingly regulate the function of their three main neurons: granule cells (GrCs), Purkinje cells (PCs) and deep cerebellar nuclear (DCN) cells. All these neurons, in addition to be excited, are reached by feed-forward and feed-back inhibitory connections, in which LTP and LTD may either operate synergistically or homeostatically in order to control information flow through the circuit. Although the investigation of individual synaptic plasticities in vitro is essential to prove their existence and mechanisms, it is insufficient to generate a coherent view of their impact on network functioning in vivo. Recent computational models and cell-specific genetic mutations in mice are shedding light on how plasticity at multiple excitatory and inhibitory synapses might regulate neuronal activities in the cerebellar circuit and contribute to learning and memory and behavioral control.

  14. Long-term relationships between cholinergic tone, synchronous bursting and synaptic remodeling.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maya Kaufman

    Full Text Available Cholinergic neuromodulation plays key roles in the regulation of neuronal excitability, network activity, arousal, and behavior. On longer time scales, cholinergic systems play essential roles in cortical development, maturation, and plasticity. Presumably, these processes are associated with substantial synaptic remodeling, yet to date, long-term relationships between cholinergic tone and synaptic remodeling remain largely unknown. Here we used automated microscopy combined with multielectrode array recordings to study long-term relationships between cholinergic tone, excitatory synapse remodeling, and network activity characteristics in networks of cortical neurons grown on multielectrode array substrates. Experimental elevations of cholinergic tone led to the abrupt suppression of episodic synchronous bursting activity (but not of general activity, followed by a gradual growth of excitatory synapses over hours. Subsequent blockage of cholinergic receptors led to an immediate restoration of synchronous bursting and the gradual reversal of synaptic growth. Neither synaptic growth nor downsizing was governed by multiplicative scaling rules. Instead, these occurred in a subset of synapses, irrespective of initial synaptic size. Synaptic growth seemed to depend on intrinsic network activity, but not on the degree to which bursting was suppressed. Intriguingly, sustained elevations of cholinergic tone were associated with a gradual recovery of synchronous bursting but not with a reversal of synaptic growth. These findings show that cholinergic tone can strongly affect synaptic remodeling and synchronous bursting activity, but do not support a strict coupling between the two. Finally, the reemergence of synchronous bursting in the presence of elevated cholinergic tone indicates that the capacity of cholinergic neuromodulation to indefinitely suppress synchronous bursting might be inherently limited.

  15. Long-term Relationships between Cholinergic Tone, Synchronous Bursting and Synaptic Remodeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaufman, Maya; Corner, Michael A.; Ziv, Noam E.

    2012-01-01

    Cholinergic neuromodulation plays key roles in the regulation of neuronal excitability, network activity, arousal, and behavior. On longer time scales, cholinergic systems play essential roles in cortical development, maturation, and plasticity. Presumably, these processes are associated with substantial synaptic remodeling, yet to date, long-term relationships between cholinergic tone and synaptic remodeling remain largely unknown. Here we used automated microscopy combined with multielectrode array recordings to study long-term relationships between cholinergic tone, excitatory synapse remodeling, and network activity characteristics in networks of cortical neurons grown on multielectrode array substrates. Experimental elevations of cholinergic tone led to the abrupt suppression of episodic synchronous bursting activity (but not of general activity), followed by a gradual growth of excitatory synapses over hours. Subsequent blockage of cholinergic receptors led to an immediate restoration of synchronous bursting and the gradual reversal of synaptic growth. Neither synaptic growth nor downsizing was governed by multiplicative scaling rules. Instead, these occurred in a subset of synapses, irrespective of initial synaptic size. Synaptic growth seemed to depend on intrinsic network activity, but not on the degree to which bursting was suppressed. Intriguingly, sustained elevations of cholinergic tone were associated with a gradual recovery of synchronous bursting but not with a reversal of synaptic growth. These findings show that cholinergic tone can strongly affect synaptic remodeling and synchronous bursting activity, but do not support a strict coupling between the two. Finally, the reemergence of synchronous bursting in the presence of elevated cholinergic tone indicates that the capacity of cholinergic neuromodulation to indefinitely suppress synchronous bursting might be inherently limited. PMID:22911726

  16. Long-term relationships between cholinergic tone, synchronous bursting and synaptic remodeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaufman, Maya; Corner, Michael A; Ziv, Noam E

    2012-01-01

    Cholinergic neuromodulation plays key roles in the regulation of neuronal excitability, network activity, arousal, and behavior. On longer time scales, cholinergic systems play essential roles in cortical development, maturation, and plasticity. Presumably, these processes are associated with substantial synaptic remodeling, yet to date, long-term relationships between cholinergic tone and synaptic remodeling remain largely unknown. Here we used automated microscopy combined with multielectrode array recordings to study long-term relationships between cholinergic tone, excitatory synapse remodeling, and network activity characteristics in networks of cortical neurons grown on multielectrode array substrates. Experimental elevations of cholinergic tone led to the abrupt suppression of episodic synchronous bursting activity (but not of general activity), followed by a gradual growth of excitatory synapses over hours. Subsequent blockage of cholinergic receptors led to an immediate restoration of synchronous bursting and the gradual reversal of synaptic growth. Neither synaptic growth nor downsizing was governed by multiplicative scaling rules. Instead, these occurred in a subset of synapses, irrespective of initial synaptic size. Synaptic growth seemed to depend on intrinsic network activity, but not on the degree to which bursting was suppressed. Intriguingly, sustained elevations of cholinergic tone were associated with a gradual recovery of synchronous bursting but not with a reversal of synaptic growth. These findings show that cholinergic tone can strongly affect synaptic remodeling and synchronous bursting activity, but do not support a strict coupling between the two. Finally, the reemergence of synchronous bursting in the presence of elevated cholinergic tone indicates that the capacity of cholinergic neuromodulation to indefinitely suppress synchronous bursting might be inherently limited.

  17. Synaptic integration of transplanted interneuron progenitor cells into native cortical networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howard, MacKenzie A; Baraban, Scott C

    2016-08-01

    Interneuron-based cell transplantation is a powerful method to modify network function in a variety of neurological disorders, including epilepsy. Whether new interneurons integrate into native neural networks in a subtype-specific manner is not well understood, and the therapeutic mechanisms underlying interneuron-based cell therapy, including the role of synaptic inhibition, are debated. In this study, we tested subtype-specific integration of transplanted interneurons using acute cortical brain slices and visualized patch-clamp recordings to measure excitatory synaptic inputs, intrinsic properties, and inhibitory synaptic outputs. Fluorescently labeled progenitor cells from the embryonic medial ganglionic eminence (MGE) were used for transplantation. At 5 wk after transplantation, MGE-derived parvalbumin-positive (PV+) interneurons received excitatory synaptic inputs, exhibited mature interneuron firing properties, and made functional synaptic inhibitory connections to native pyramidal cells that were comparable to those of native PV+ interneurons. These findings demonstrate that MGE-derived PV+ interneurons functionally integrate into subtype-appropriate physiological niches within host networks following transplantation. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  18. Inverse stochastic resonance induced by synaptic background activity with unreliable synapses

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Uzuntarla, Muhammet, E-mail: muzuntarla@yahoo.com

    2013-11-15

    Inverse stochastic resonance (ISR) is a recently pronounced phenomenon that is the minimum occurrence in mean firing rate of a rhythmically firing neuron as noise level varies. Here, by using a realistic modeling approach for the noise, we investigate the ISR with concrete biophysical mechanisms. It is shown that mean firing rate of a single neuron subjected to synaptic bombardment exhibits a minimum as the spike transmission probability varies. We also demonstrate that the occurrence of ISR strongly depends on the synaptic input regime, where it is most prominent in the balanced state of excitatory and inhibitory inputs.

  19. MPTP-meditated hippocampal dopamine deprivation modulates synaptic transmission and activity-dependent synaptic plasticity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhu Guoqi; Chen Ying; Huang Yuying; Li Qinglin; Behnisch, Thomas

    2011-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD)-like symptoms including learning deficits are inducible by 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP). Therefore, it is possible that MPTP may disturb hippocampal memory processing by modulation of dopamine (DA)- and activity-dependent synaptic plasticity. We demonstrate here that intraperitoneal (i.p.) MPTP injection reduces the number of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)-positive neurons in the substantia nigra (SN) within 7 days. Subsequently, the TH expression level in SN and hippocampus and the amount of DA and its metabolite DOPAC in striatum and hippocampus decrease. DA depletion does not alter basal synaptic transmission and changes pair-pulse facilitation (PPF) of field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs) only at the 30 ms inter-pulse interval. In addition, the induction of long-term potentiation (LTP) is impaired whereas the duration of long-term depression (LTD) becomes prolonged. Since both LTP and LTD depend critically on activation of NMDA and DA receptors, we also tested the effect of DA depletion on NMDA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission. Seven days after MPTP injection, the NMDA receptor-mediated fEPSPs are decreased by about 23%. Blocking the NMDA receptor-mediated fEPSP does not mimic the MPTP-LTP. Only co-application of D1/D5 and NMDA receptor antagonists during tetanization resembled the time course of fEPSP potentiation as observed 7 days after i.p. MPTP injection. Together, our data demonstrate that MPTP-induced degeneration of DA neurons and the subsequent hippocampal DA depletion alter NMDA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission and activity-dependent synaptic plasticity. - Highlights: → I.p. MPTP-injection mediates death of dopaminergic neurons. → I.p. MPTP-injection depletes DA and DOPAC in striatum and hippocampus. → I.p. MPTP-injection does not alter basal synaptic transmission. → Reduction of LTP and enhancement of LTD after i.p. MPTP-injection. → Attenuation of NMDA-receptors mediated

  20. Polymer-electrolyte-gated nanowire synaptic transistors for neuromorphic applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zou, Can; Sun, Jia; Gou, Guangyang; Kong, Ling-An; Qian, Chuan; Dai, Guozhang; Yang, Junliang; Guo, Guang-hua

    2017-09-01

    Polymer-electrolytes are formed by dissolving a salt in polymer instead of water, the conducting mechanism involves the segmental motion-assisted diffusion of ion in the polymer matrix. Here, we report on the fabrication of tin oxide (SnO2) nanowire synaptic transistors using polymer-electrolyte gating. A thin layer of poly(ethylene oxide) and lithium perchlorate (PEO/LiClO4) was deposited on top of the devices, which was used to boost device performances. A voltage spike applied on the in-plane gate attracts ions toward the polymer-electrolyte/SnO2 nanowire interface and the ions are gradually returned after the pulse is removed, which can induce a dynamic excitatory postsynaptic current in the nanowire channel. The SnO2 synaptic transistors exhibit the behavior of short-term plasticity like the paired-pulse facilitation and self-adaptation, which is related to the electric double-effect regulation. In addition, the synaptic logic functions and the logical function transformation are also discussed. Such single SnO2 nanowire-based synaptic transistors are of great importance for future neuromorphic devices.

  1. Intense synaptic activity enhances temporal resolution in spinal motoneurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rune W Berg

    Full Text Available In neurons, spike timing is determined by integration of synaptic potentials in delicate concert with intrinsic properties. Although the integration time is functionally crucial, it remains elusive during network activity. While mechanisms of rapid processing are well documented in sensory systems, agility in motor systems has received little attention. Here we analyze how intense synaptic activity affects integration time in spinal motoneurons during functional motor activity and report a 10-fold decrease. As a result, action potentials can only be predicted from the membrane potential within 10 ms of their occurrence and detected for less than 10 ms after their occurrence. Being shorter than the average inter-spike interval, the AHP has little effect on integration time and spike timing, which instead is entirely determined by fluctuations in membrane potential caused by the barrage of inhibitory and excitatory synaptic activity. By shortening the effective integration time, this intense synaptic input may serve to facilitate the generation of rapid changes in movements.

  2. Segmental, synaptic actions of commissural interneurons in the mouse spinal cord

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Quinlan, Katharina A.; Kiehn, Ole

    2007-01-01

    outlines the basic connectivity pattern of CINs in the mouse spinal cord on a segmental level. Our study suggests that, based on observed synaptic connectivity, both short- and long-range CINs are likely involved in segmental left-right coordination and that the CIN system is organized into a dual......-inhibitory and single-excitatory system. These systems are organized in a way that they could provide appropriate coordination during locomotion....

  3. Reduced sensory stimulation alters the molecular make-up of glutamatergic hair cell synapses in the developing cochlea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barclay, M; Constable, R; James, N R; Thorne, P R; Montgomery, J M

    2016-06-14

    Neural activity during early development is known to alter innervation pathways in the central and peripheral nervous systems. We sought to examine how reduced sound-induced sensory activity in the cochlea affected the consolidation of glutamatergic synapses between inner hair cells (IHC) and the primary auditory neurons as these synapses play a primary role in transmitting sound information to the brain. A unilateral conductive hearing loss was induced prior to the onset of sound-mediated stimulation of the sensory hair cells, by rupturing the tympanic membrane and dislocating the auditory ossicles in the left ear of P11 mice. Auditory brainstem responses at P15 and P21 showed a 40-50-dB increase in thresholds for frequencies 8-32kHz in the dislocated ear relative to the control ear. Immunohistochemistry and confocal microscopy were subsequently used to examine the effect of this attenuation of sound stimulation on the expression of RIBEYE, which comprises the presynaptic ribbons, Shank-1, a postsynaptic scaffolding protein, and the GluA2/3 and 4 subunits of postsynaptic AMPA receptors. Our results show that dislocation did not alter the number of pre- or postsynaptic protein puncta. However, dislocation did increase the size of RIBEYE, GluA4, GluA2/3 and Shank-1 puncta, with postsynaptic changes preceding presynaptic changes. Our data suggest that a reduction in sound stimulation during auditory development induces plasticity in the molecular make-up of IHC glutamatergic synapses, but does not affect the number of these synapses. Up-regulation of synaptic proteins with sound attenuation may facilitate a compensatory increase in synaptic transmission due to the reduced sensory stimulation of the IHC. Copyright © 2016 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. The Prdm13 histone methyltransferase encoding gene is a Ptf1a-Rbpj downstream target that suppresses glutamatergic and promotes GABAergic neuronal fate in the dorsal neural tube

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hanotel, Julie; Bessodes, Nathalie; Thélie, Aurore

    2014-01-01

    The basic helix-loop-helix (bHLH) transcriptional activator Ptf1a determines inhibitory GABAergic over excitatory glutamatergic neuronal cell fate in progenitors of the vertebrate dorsal spinal cord, cerebellum and retina. In an in situ hybridization expression survey of PR domain containing genes...... encoding putative chromatin-remodeling zinc finger transcription factors in Xenopus embryos, we identified Prdm13 as a histone methyltransferase belonging to the Ptf1a synexpression group. Gain and loss of Ptf1a function analyses in both frog and mice indicates that Prdm13 is positively regulated by Ptf1a...

  5. SynDIG4/Prrt1 Is Required for Excitatory Synapse Development and Plasticity Underlying Cognitive Function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucas Matt

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Altering AMPA receptor (AMPAR content at synapses is a key mechanism underlying the regulation of synaptic strength during learning and memory. Previous work demonstrated that SynDIG1 (synapse differentiation-induced gene 1 encodes a transmembrane AMPAR-associated protein that regulates excitatory synapse strength and number. Here we show that the related protein SynDIG4 (also known as Prrt1 modifies AMPAR gating properties in a subunit-dependent manner. Young SynDIG4 knockout (KO mice have weaker excitatory synapses, as evaluated by immunocytochemistry and electrophysiology. Adult SynDIG4 KO mice show complete loss of tetanus-induced long-term potentiation (LTP, while mEPSC amplitude is reduced by only 25%. Furthermore, SynDIG4 KO mice exhibit deficits in two independent cognitive assays. Given that SynDIG4 colocalizes with the AMPAR subunit GluA1 at non-synaptic sites, we propose that SynDIG4 maintains a pool of extrasynaptic AMPARs necessary for synapse development and function underlying higher-order cognitive plasticity.

  6. Single-vesicle imaging reveals different transport mechanisms between glutamatergic and GABAergic vesicles

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Farsi, Z.; Preobraschenski, J.; Bogaart, G. van den; Riedel, D.; Jahn, R.; Woehler, A.

    2016-01-01

    Synaptic transmission is mediated by the release of neurotransmitters, which involves exo-endocytotic cycling of synaptic vesicles. To maintain synaptic function, synaptic vesicles are refilled with thousands of neurotransmitter molecules within seconds after endocytosis, using the energy provided

  7. Experience-Dependent Equilibration of AMPAR-Mediated Synaptic Transmission during the Critical Period

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kyung-Seok Han

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Experience-dependent synapse refinement is essential for functional optimization of neural circuits. However, how sensory experience sculpts excitatory synaptic transmission is poorly understood. Here, we show that despite substantial remodeling of synaptic connectivity, AMPAR-mediated synaptic transmission remains at equilibrium during the critical period in the mouse primary visual cortex. The maintenance of this equilibrium requires neurogranin (Ng, a postsynaptic calmodulin-binding protein important for synaptic plasticity. With normal visual experience, loss of Ng decreased AMPAR-positive synapse numbers, prevented AMPAR-silent synapse maturation, and increased spine elimination. Importantly, visual deprivation halted synapse loss caused by loss of Ng, revealing that Ng coordinates experience-dependent AMPAR-silent synapse conversion to AMPAR-active synapses and synapse elimination. Loss of Ng also led to sensitized long-term synaptic depression (LTD and impaired visually guided behavior. Our synaptic interrogation reveals that experience-dependent coordination of AMPAR-silent synapse conversion and synapse elimination hinges upon Ng-dependent mechanisms for constructive synaptic refinement during the critical period.

  8. Neuronal pentraxin 1: A synaptic-derived plasma biomarker in Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Qiu-Lan; Teng, Edmond; Zuo, Xiaohong; Jones, Mychica; Teter, Bruce; Zhao, Evan Y; Zhu, Cansheng; Bilousova, Tina; Gylys, Karen H; Apostolova, Liana G; LaDu, Mary Jo; Hossain, Mir Ahamed; Frautschy, Sally A; Cole, Gregory M

    2018-06-01

    Synaptic neurodegeneration is thought to be an early event initiated by soluble β-amyloid (Aβ) aggregates that closely correlates with cognitive decline in Alzheimer disease (AD). Apolipoprotein ε4 (APOE4) is the most common genetic risk factor for both familial AD (FAD) and sporadic AD; it accelerates Aβ aggregation and selectively impairs glutamate receptor function and synaptic plasticity. However, its molecular mechanisms remain elusive and these synaptic deficits are difficult to monitor. AD- and APOE4-dependent plasma biomarkers have been proposed, but synapse-related plasma biomarkers are lacking. We evaluated neuronal pentraxin 1 (NP1), a potential CNS-derived plasma biomarker of excitatory synaptic pathology. NP1 is preferentially expressed in brain and involved in glutamate receptor internalization. NP1 is secreted presynaptically induced by Aβ oligomers, and implicated in excitatory synaptic and mitochondrial deficits. Levels of NP1 and its fragments were increased in a correlated fashion in both brain and plasma of 7-8 month-old E4FAD mice relative to E3FAD mice. NP1 was also found in exosome preparations and reduced by dietary DHA supplementation. Plasma NP1 was higher in E4FAD+ (APOE4 +/+ /FAD +/- ) relative to E4FAD- (non-carrier; APOE4 +/+ /FAD -/- ) mice, suggesting NP1 is modulated by Aβ expression. Finally, relative to normal elderly, plasma NP1 was also elevated in patients with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and elevated further in the subset who progressed to early-stage AD. In those patients, there was a trend towards increased NP1 levels in APOE4 carriers relative to non-carriers. These findings indicate that NP1 may represent a potential synapse-derived plasma biomarker relevant to early alterations in excitatory synapses in MCI and early-stage AD. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  9. Making of a Synapse: Recurrent Roles of Drebrin A at Excitatory Synapses Throughout Life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aoki, Chiye; Sherpa, Ang D

    2017-01-01

    Mature excitatory synapses are composed of more than 1500 proteins postsynaptically and hundreds more that operate presynaptically. Among them, drebrin is an F-actin-binding protein that increases noticeably during juvenile synaptogenesis. Electron microscopic analysis reveals that drebrin is highly enriched specifically on the postsynaptic side of excitatory synapses. Since dendritic spines are structures specialized for excitatory synaptic transmission, the function of drebrin was probed by analyzing the ultrastructural characteristics of dendritic spines of animals with genetic deletion of drebrin A (DAKO), the adult isoform of drebrin. Electron microscopic analyses revealed that these brains are surprisingly intact, in that axo-spinous synaptic junctions are well-formed and not significantly altered in number. This normal ultrastructure may be because drebrin E, the alternate embryonic isoform, compensates for the genetic deletion of drebrin A. However, DAKO results in the loss of homeostatic plasticity of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs). The NMDAR activation-dependent trafficking of the NR2A subunit-containing NMDARs from dendritic shafts into spine head cytoplasm is greatly diminished within brains of DAKO. Conversely, within brains of wild-type rodents, spines respond to NMDAR blockade with influx of F-actin, drebrin A, and NR2A subunits of NMDARs. These observations indicate that drebrin A facilitates the trafficking of NMDAR cargos in an F-actin-dependent manner to mediate homeostatic plasticity. Analysis of the brains of transgenic mice used as models of Alzheimer's disease (AD) reveals that the loss of drebrin from dendritic spines predates the emergence of synaptic dysfunction and cognitive impairment, suggesting that this form of homeostatic plasticity contributes toward cognition. Two studies suggest that the nature of drebrin's interaction with NMDARs is dependent on the receptor's subunit composition. Drebrin A can be found co

  10. Replacement of asymmetric synaptic profiles in the molecular layer of dentate gyrus following cycloheximide in the pilocarpine model in rats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simone eBittencourt

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Mossy fiber sprouting is among the best-studied forms of post-lesional synaptic plasticity and is regarded by many as contributory to seizures in both humans and animal models of epilepsy. It is not known whether mossy fiber sprouting increases the number of synapses in the molecular layer or merely replaces lost contacts. Using the pilocarpine model of status epilepticus to induce mossy fiber sprouting, and cycloheximide to block this sprouting, we evaluated at the ultrastructural level the number and type of asymmetric synaptic contacts in the molecular layer of the dentate gyrus. As expected, whereas pilocarpine-treated rats had dense silver grain deposits in the inner molecular layer (reflecting mossy fiber sprouting, pilocarpine+cycloheximide-treated animals did not differ from controls. Both groups of treated rats (Pilo group and CHX+Pilo group had reduced density of asymmetric synaptic profiles (putative excitatory synaptic contacts, which was greater for cycloheximide-treated animals. For both treated groups the loss of excitatory synaptic contacts was even greater in the outer molecular layer than in the best studied inner molecular layer (in which mossy fiber sprouting occurs. These results indicate that mossy fiber sprouting tends to replace lost synaptic contacts rather than increase the absolute number of contacts. We speculate that the overall result is more consistent with restored rather than with increased excitability.

  11. Zinc and glutamate dehydrogenase in putative glutamatergic brain structures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolf, G; Schmidt, W

    1983-01-01

    A certain topographic parallelism between the distribution of histochemically (TIMM staining) identified zinc and putative glutamatergic structures in the rat brain was demonstrated. Glutamate dehydrogenase as a zinc containing protein is in consideration to be an enzyme synthesizing transmitter glutamate. In a low concentration range externally added zinc ions (10(-9) to 10(-7) M) induced an increase in the activity of glutamate dehydrogenase (GDH) originating from rat hippocampal formation, neocortex, and cerebellum up to 142.4%. With rising molarity of Zn(II) in the incubation medium, the enzyme of hippocampal formation and cerebellum showed a biphasic course of activation. Zinc ions of a concentration higher than 10(-6) M caused a strong inhibition of GDH. The effect of Zn(II) on GDH originating from spinal ganglia and liver led only to a decrease of enzyme activity. These results are discussed in connection with a functional correlation between zinc and putatively glutamatergic system.

  12. Role of astrocytic transport processes in glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schousboe, A; Sarup, A; Bak, L K

    2004-01-01

    The fine tuning of both glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission is to a large extent dependent upon optimal function of astrocytic transport processes. Thus, glutamate transport in astrocytes is mandatory to maintain extrasynaptic glutamate levels sufficiently low to prevent excitotoxic...... neuronal damage. In GABA synapses hyperactivity of astroglial GABA uptake may lead to diminished GABAergic inhibitory activity resulting in seizures. As a consequence of this the expression and functional activity of astrocytic glutamate and GABA transport is regulated in a number of ways...

  13. Glutamatergic neurotransmission modulates hypoxia-induced hyperventilation but not anapyrexia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paula P.M. de

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available The interaction between pulmonary ventilation (V E and body temperature (Tb is essential for O2 delivery to match metabolic rate under varying states of metabolic demand. Hypoxia causes hyperventilation and anapyrexia (a regulated drop in Tb, but the neurotransmitters responsible for this interaction are not well known. Since L-glutamate is released centrally in response to peripheral chemoreceptor stimulation and glutamatergic receptors are spread in the central nervous system we tested the hypothesis that central L-glutamate mediates the ventilatory and thermal responses to hypoxia. We measured V E and Tb in 40 adult male Wistar rats (270 to 300 g before and after intracerebroventricular injection of kynurenic acid (KYN, an ionotropic glutamatergic receptor antagonist, alpha-methyl-4-carboxyphenylglycine (MCPG, a metabotropic glutamatergic receptor antagonist or vehicle (saline, followed by a 1-h period of hypoxia (7% inspired O2 or normoxia (humidified room air. Under normoxia, KYN (N = 5 or MCPG (N = 8 treatment did not affect V E or Tb compared to saline (N = 6. KYN and MCPG injection caused a decrease in hypoxia-induced hyperventilation (595 ± 49 for KYN, N = 7 and 525 ± 84 ml kg-1 min-1 for MCPG, N = 6; P < 0.05 but did not affect anapyrexia (35.3 ± 0.2 for KYN and 34.7 ± 0.4ºC for MCPG compared to saline (912 ± 110 ml kg-1 min-1 and 34.8 ± 0.2ºC, N = 8. We conclude that glutamatergic receptors are involved in hypoxic hyperventilation but do not affect anapyrexia, indicating that L-glutamate is not a common mediator of this interaction.

  14. Serotonin increases synaptic activity in olfactory bulb glomeruli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brill, Julia; Shao, Zuoyi; Puche, Adam C; Wachowiak, Matt; Shipley, Michael T

    2016-03-01

    Serotoninergic fibers densely innervate olfactory bulb glomeruli, the first sites of synaptic integration in the olfactory system. Acting through 5HT2A receptors, serotonin (5HT) directly excites external tufted cells (ETCs), key excitatory glomerular neurons, and depolarizes some mitral cells (MCs), the olfactory bulb's main output neurons. We further investigated 5HT action on MCs and determined its effects on the two major classes of glomerular interneurons: GABAergic/dopaminergic short axon cells (SACs) and GABAergic periglomerular cells (PGCs). In SACs, 5HT evoked a depolarizing current mediated by 5HT2C receptors but did not significantly impact spike rate. 5HT had no measurable direct effect in PGCs. Serotonin increased spontaneous excitatory and inhibitory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs and sIPSCs) in PGCs and SACs. Increased sEPSCs were mediated by 5HT2A receptors, suggesting that they are primarily due to enhanced excitatory drive from ETCs. Increased sIPSCs resulted from elevated excitatory drive onto GABAergic interneurons and augmented GABA release from SACs. Serotonin-mediated GABA release from SACs was action potential independent and significantly increased miniature IPSC frequency in glomerular neurons. When focally applied to a glomerulus, 5HT increased MC spontaneous firing greater than twofold but did not increase olfactory nerve-evoked responses. Taken together, 5HT modulates glomerular network activity in several ways: 1) it increases ETC-mediated feed-forward excitation onto MCs, SACs, and PGCs; 2) it increases inhibition of glomerular interneurons; 3) it directly triggers action potential-independent GABA release from SACs; and 4) these network actions increase spontaneous MC firing without enhancing responses to suprathreshold sensory input. This may enhance MC sensitivity while maintaining dynamic range. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  15. A review of evidence for GABergic predominance/glutamatergic deficit as a common etiological factor in both schizophrenia and affective psychoses: more support for a continuum hypothesis of "functional" psychosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Squires, R F; Saederup, E

    1991-10-01

    Virtually all antidepressant and antipsychotic drugs, including clozapine, rimcazole and lithium ion, are proconvulsants, and convulsive therapy, using metrazol, a known GABA-A antagonist, as well as electro-convulsive therapy, can be effective in treating both schizophrenia and affective psychoses. Many antidepressant and antipsychotic drugs, including clozapine, as well as some of their metabolites, reverse the inhibitory effect of GABA on 35S-TBPS binding, a reliable predictor of GABA-A receptor blockade. A review of relevant literature suggests that 1) "functional" psychoses constitute a continuum of disorders ranging from schizophrenia to affective psychoses with overlap of symptoms, heredity and treatments, 2) a weakening of GABergic inhibitory activity, or potentiation of counterbalancing glutamatergic neurotransmission, in the brain, may be involved in the therapeutic activities of both antidepressant and antipsychotic drugs, and 3) schizophrenia and the affective psychoses may be different expressions of the same underlying defect: GABergic preponderance/glutamatergic deficit. Schizophrenia and affective psychoses share the following: 1) several treatments are effective in both, 2) similar modes of inheritance, 3) congruent seasonal birth excesses, 4) enlarged cerebral ventricles and cerebellar vermian atrophy, 5) dexamethasone non-suppression. Both genetic and environmental factors are involved in both schizophrenia and affective psychoses, and several lines of evidence suggest that important environmental factors are neurotropic pathogens that selectively destroy glutamatergic neurons. One group of genes associated with psychoses may increase vulnerability to attack and destruction, by neurotropic pathogens, of excitatory glutamatergic neurons that counterbalance inhibitory GABergic neurons. A second group of genes may encode subunits of overactive GABA-A receptors, while a third group of genes may encode subunits of hypo-active glutamate receptors

  16. Synaptic dysfunction in amygdala in intellectual disorder models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aincy, Marianne; Meziane, Hamid; Herault, Yann; Humeau, Yann

    2018-06-08

    The amygdala is a part of the limbic circuit that has been extensively studied in terms of synaptic connectivity, plasticity and cellular organization since decades (Ehrlich et al., 2009; Ledoux, 2000; Maren, 2001). Amygdala sub-nuclei, including lateral, basolateral and central amygdala appear now as "hubs" providing in parallel and in series neuronal processing enabling the animal to elicit freezing or escaping behavior in response to external threats. In rodents, these behaviors are easily observed and quantified following associative fear conditioning. Thus, studies on amygdala circuit in association with threat/fear behavior became very popular in laboratories and are often used among other behavioral tests to evaluate learning abilities of mouse models for various neuropsychiatric conditions including genetically encoded intellectual disabilities (ID). Yet, more than 100 human X-linked genes - and several hundreds of autosomal genes - have been associated with ID in humans. These mutations introduced in mice can generate social deficits, anxiety dysregulations and fear learning impairments (McNaughton et al., 2008; Houbaert et al., 2013; Jayachandran et al., 2014; Zhang et al., 2015). Noteworthy, a significant proportion of the coded ID gene products are synaptic proteins. It is postulated that the loss of function of these proteins could destabilize neuronal circuits by global changes of the balance between inhibitory and excitatory drives onto neurons. However, whereas amygdala related behavioral deficits are commonly observed in ID models, the role of most of these ID-genes in synaptic function and plasticity in the amygdala are only sparsely studied. We will here discuss some of the concepts that emerged from amygdala-targeted studies examining the role of syndromic and non-syndromic ID genes in fear-related behaviors and/or synaptic function. Along describing these cases, we will discuss how synaptic deficits observed in amygdala circuits could impact

  17. Synaptic reorganization of inhibitory hilar interneuron circuitry after traumatic brain injury in mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunt, Robert F.; Scheff, Stephen W.; Smith, Bret N.

    2011-01-01

    Functional plasticity of synaptic networks in the dentate gyrus has been implicated in the development of posttraumatic epilepsy and in cognitive dysfunction after traumatic brain injury, but little is known about potentially pathogenic changes in inhibitory circuits. We examined synaptic inhibition of dentate granule cells and excitability of surviving GABAergic hilar interneurons 8–13 weeks after cortical contusion brain injury in transgenic mice that express enhanced green fluorescent protein in a subpopulation of inhibitory neurons. Whole-cell voltage-clamp recordings in granule cells revealed a reduction in spontaneous and miniature IPSC frequency after head injury; no concurrent change in paired-pulse ratio was found in granule cells after paired electrical stimulation of the hilus. Despite reduced inhibitory input to granule cells, action potential and EPSC frequencies were increased in hilar GABA neurons from slices ipsilateral to the injury, versus those from control or contralateral slices. Further, increased excitatory synaptic activity was detected in hilar GABA neurons ipsilateral to the injury after glutamate photostimulation of either the granule cell or CA3 pyramidal cell layers. Together, these findings suggest that excitatory drive to surviving hilar GABA neurons is enhanced by convergent input from both pyramidal and granule cells, but synaptic inhibition of granule cells is not fully restored after injury. This rewiring of circuitry regulating hilar inhibitory neurons may reflect an important compensatory mechanism, but it may also contribute to network destabilization by increasing the relative impact of surviving individual interneurons in controlling granule cell excitability in the posttraumatic dentate gyrus. PMID:21543618

  18. Dysregulated Expression of Neuregulin-1 by Cortical Pyramidal Neurons Disrupts Synaptic Plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amit Agarwal

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Neuregulin-1 (NRG1 gene variants are associated with increased genetic risk for schizophrenia. It is unclear whether risk haplotypes cause elevated or decreased expression of NRG1 in the brains of schizophrenia patients, given that both findings have been reported from autopsy studies. To study NRG1 functions in vivo, we generated mouse mutants with reduced and elevated NRG1 levels and analyzed the impact on cortical functions. Loss of NRG1 from cortical projection neurons resulted in increased inhibitory neurotransmission, reduced synaptic plasticity, and hypoactivity. Neuronal overexpression of cysteine-rich domain (CRD-NRG1, the major brain isoform, caused unbalanced excitatory-inhibitory neurotransmission, reduced synaptic plasticity, abnormal spine growth, altered steady-state levels of synaptic plasticity-related proteins, and impaired sensorimotor gating. We conclude that an “optimal” level of NRG1 signaling balances excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmission in the cortex. Our data provide a potential pathomechanism for impaired synaptic plasticity and suggest that human NRG1 risk haplotypes exert a gain-of-function effect.

  19. Dysregulated expression of neuregulin-1 by cortical pyramidal neurons disrupts synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agarwal, Amit; Zhang, Mingyue; Trembak-Duff, Irina; Unterbarnscheidt, Tilmann; Radyushkin, Konstantin; Dibaj, Payam; Martins de Souza, Daniel; Boretius, Susann; Brzózka, Magdalena M; Steffens, Heinz; Berning, Sebastian; Teng, Zenghui; Gummert, Maike N; Tantra, Martesa; Guest, Peter C; Willig, Katrin I; Frahm, Jens; Hell, Stefan W; Bahn, Sabine; Rossner, Moritz J; Nave, Klaus-Armin; Ehrenreich, Hannelore; Zhang, Weiqi; Schwab, Markus H

    2014-08-21

    Neuregulin-1 (NRG1) gene variants are associated with increased genetic risk for schizophrenia. It is unclear whether risk haplotypes cause elevated or decreased expression of NRG1 in the brains of schizophrenia patients, given that both findings have been reported from autopsy studies. To study NRG1 functions in vivo, we generated mouse mutants with reduced and elevated NRG1 levels and analyzed the impact on cortical functions. Loss of NRG1 from cortical projection neurons resulted in increased inhibitory neurotransmission, reduced synaptic plasticity, and hypoactivity. Neuronal overexpression of cysteine-rich domain (CRD)-NRG1, the major brain isoform, caused unbalanced excitatory-inhibitory neurotransmission, reduced synaptic plasticity, abnormal spine growth, altered steady-state levels of synaptic plasticity-related proteins, and impaired sensorimotor gating. We conclude that an "optimal" level of NRG1 signaling balances excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmission in the cortex. Our data provide a potential pathomechanism for impaired synaptic plasticity and suggest that human NRG1 risk haplotypes exert a gain-of-function effect. Copyright © 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. A Computational Model to Investigate Astrocytic Glutamate Uptake Influence on Synaptic Transmission and Neuronal Spiking

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    Sushmita Lakshmi Allam

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Over the past decades, our view of astrocytes has switched from passive support cells to active processing elements in the brain. The current view is that astrocytes shape neuronal communication and also play an important role in many neurodegenerative diseases. Despite the growing awareness of the importance of astrocytes, the exact mechanisms underlying neuron-astrocyte communication and the physiological consequences of astrocytic-neuronal interactions remain largely unclear. In this work, we define a modeling framework that will permit to address unanswered questions regarding the role of astrocytes. Our computational model of a detailed glutamatergic synapse facilitates the analysis of neural system responses to various stimuli and conditions that are otherwise difficult to obtain experimentally, in particular the readouts at the sub-cellular level. In this paper, we extend a detailed glutamatergic synaptic model, to include astrocytic glutamate transporters. We demonstrate how these glial transporters, responsible for the majority of glutamate uptake, modulate synaptic transmission mediated by ionotropic AMPA and NMDA receptors at glutamatergic synapses. Furthermore, we investigate how these local signaling effects at the synaptic level are translated into varying spatio-temporal patterns of neuron firing. Paired pulse stimulation results reveal that the effect of astrocytic glutamate uptake is more apparent when the input inter-spike interval is sufficiently long to allow the receptors to recover from desensitization. These results suggest an important functional role of astrocytes in spike timing dependent processes and demand further investigation of the molecular basis of certain neurological diseases specifically related to alterations in astrocytic glutamate uptake, such as epilepsy.

  1. Bidirectional control of social hierarchy by synaptic efficacy in medial prefrontal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Fei; Zhu, Jun; Zhu, Hong; Zhang, Qi; Lin, Zhanmin; Hu, Hailan

    2011-11-04

    Dominance hierarchy has a profound impact on animals' survival, health, and reproductive success, but its neural circuit mechanism is virtually unknown. We found that dominance ranking in mice is transitive, relatively stable, and highly correlates among multiple behavior measures. Recording from layer V pyramidal neurons of the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) showed higher strength of excitatory synaptic inputs in mice with higher ranking, as compared with their subordinate cage mates. Furthermore, molecular manipulations that resulted in an increase and decrease in the synaptic efficacy in dorsal mPFC neurons caused an upward and downward movement in the social rank, respectively. These results provide direct evidence for mPFC's involvement in social hierarchy and suggest that social rank is plastic and can be tuned by altering synaptic strength in mPFC pyramidal cells.

  2. Recent advances in understanding synaptic abnormalities in Rett syndrome [version 1; referees: 2 approved

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Johnston

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Rett syndrome is an extremely disabling X-linked nervous system disorder that mainly affects girls in early childhood and causes autism-like behavior, severe intellectual disability, seizures, sleep disturbances, autonomic instability, and other disorders due to mutations in the MeCP2 (methyl CpG-binding protein 2 transcription factor. The disorder targets synapses and synaptic plasticity and has been shown to disrupt the balance between glutamate excitatory synapses and GABAergic inhibitory synapses. In fact, it can be argued that Rett syndrome is primarily a disorder of synaptic plasticity and that agents that can correct this imbalance may have beneficial effects on brain development. This review briefly summarizes the link between disrupted synaptic plasticity mechanisms and Rett syndrome and early clinical trials that aim to target these abnormalities to improve the outcome for these severely disabled children.

  3. NPY gene transfer in the hippocampus attenuates synaptic plasticity and learning

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sørensen, Andreas T; Kanter-Schlifke, Irene; Carli, Mirjana

    2008-01-01

    -mediated mechanisms. In addition, transgene NPY seems to be released during high frequency neuronal activity, leading to decreased glutamate release in excitatory synapses. Importantly, memory consolidation appears to be affected by the treatment. We found that long-term potentiation (LTP) in the CA1 area...... processing. Here we show, by electrophysiological recordings in CA1 of the hippocampal formation of rats, that hippocampal NPY gene transfer into the intact brain does not affect basal synaptic transmission, but slightly alters short-term synaptic plasticity, most likely via NPY Y2 receptor....... Future clinical progress, however, requires more detailed evaluation of possible side effects of this treatment. Until now it has been unknown whether rAAV vector-based NPY overexpression in the hippocampus alters normal synaptic transmission and plasticity, which could disturb learning and memory...

  4. Binocular Rivalry in a Competitive Neural Network with Synaptic Depression

    KAUST Repository

    Kilpatrick, Zachary P.

    2010-01-01

    We study binocular rivalry in a competitive neural network with synaptic depression. In particular, we consider two coupled hypercolums within primary visual cortex (V1), representing orientation selective cells responding to either left or right eye inputs. Coupling between hypercolumns is dominated by inhibition, especially for neurons with dissimilar orientation preferences. Within hypercolumns, recurrent connectivity is excitatory for similar orientations and inhibitory for different orientations. All synaptic connections are modifiable by local synaptic depression. When the hypercolumns are driven by orthogonal oriented stimuli, it is possible to induce oscillations that are representative of binocular rivalry. We first analyze the occurrence of oscillations in a space-clamped version of the model using a fast-slow analys is, taking advantage of the fact that depression evolves much slower than population activity. We th en analyze the onset of oscillations in the full spatially extended system by carrying out a piecewise smooth stability analysis of single (winner-take-all) and double (fusion) bumps within the network. Although our stability analysis takes into account only instabilities associated with real eigenvalues, it identifies points of instability that are consistent with what is found numerically. In particular, we show that, in regions of parameter space where double bumps are unstable and no single bumps exist, binocular rivalry can arise as a slow alternation between either population supporting a bump. © 2010 Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. Glutamatergic Receptor Activation in the Commisural Nucleus Tractus Solitarii (cNTS) Mediates Brain Glucose Retention (BGR) Response to Anoxic Carotid Chemoreceptor (CChr) Stimulation in Rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuéllar, R; Montero, S; Luquín, S; García-Estrada, J; Dobrovinskaya, O; Melnikov, V; Lemus, M; de Álvarez-Buylla, E Roces

    2015-01-01

    Glutamate, released from central terminals of glossopharyngeal nerve, is a major excitatory neurotransmitter of commissural nucleus tractus solitarii (cNTS) afferent terminals, and brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) has been shown to attenuate glutamatergic AMPA currents in NTS neurons. To test the hypothesis that AMPA contributes to glucose regulation in vivo modulating the hyperglycemic reflex with brain glucose retention (BGR), we microinjected AMPA and NBQX (AMPA antagonist) into the cNTS before carotid chemoreceptor stimulation in anesthetized normal Wistar rats, while hyperglycemic reflex an brain glucose retention (BGR) were analyzed. To investigate the underlying mechanisms, GluR2/3 receptor and c-Fos protein expressions in cNTS neurons were determined. We showed that AMPA in the cNTS before CChr stimulation inhibited BGR observed in aCSF group. In contrast, NBQX in similar conditions, did not modify the effects on glucose variables observed in aCSF control group. These experiments suggest that glutamatergic pathways, via AMPA receptors, in the cNTS may play a role in glucose homeostasis.

  9. Statistical theory of synaptic connectivity in the neocortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Escobar, Gina

    Learning and long-term memory rely on plasticity of neural circuits. In adult cerebral cortex plasticity can be mediated by modulation of existing synapses and structural reorganization of circuits through growth and retraction of dendritic spines. In the first part of this thesis, we describe a theoretical framework for the analysis of spine remodeling plasticity. New synaptic contacts appear in the neuropil where gaps between axonal and dendritic branches can be bridged by dendritic spines. Such sites are termed potential synapses. We derive expressions for the densities of potential synapses in the neuropil. We calculate the ratio of actual to potential synapses, called the connectivity fraction, and use it to find the number of structurally different circuits attainable with spine remodeling. These parameters are calculated in four systems: mouse occipital cortex, rat hippocampal area CA1, monkey primary visual (V1), and human temporal cortex. The neurogeometric results indicate that a dendritic spine can choose among an average of 4-7 potential targets in rodents, while in primates it can choose from 10-20 potential targets. The potential of the neuropil to undergo circuit remodeling is found to be highest in rat CA1 (4.9-6.0 nats/mum 3) and lowest in monkey V1 (0.9-1.0 nats/mum3). We evaluate the lower bound of neuron selectivity in the choice of synaptic partners and find that post-synaptic excitatory neurons in rodents make synaptic contacts with more than 21-30% of pre-synaptic axons encountered with new spine growth. Primate neurons appear to be more selective, making synaptic connections with more than 7-15% of encountered axons. Another plasticity mechanism is included in the second part of this work: long-term potentiation and depression of excitatory synaptic connections. Because synaptic strength is correlated with the size of the synapse, the former can be inferred from the distribution of spine head volumes. To this end we analyze and compare 166

  10. Medial septal dysfunction by Aβ-induced KCNQ channel-block in glutamatergic neurons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Leão, Richardson N.; Colom, Luis V.; Borgius, Lotta

    2012-01-01

    (MS) neurons in mice. In glutamatergic neurons Aβ increases firing frequency and blocks the A- and the M-current (IA and IM, respectively). While the IA block is similar in other MS neuron classes, the block of IM is specific to glutamatergic neurons. IM block and a simulated Aβ block mimic the Aβ......-induced increase in spontaneous firing in glutamatergic neurons. Calcium imaging shows that under control conditions glutamatergic neurons rarely fire while nonglutamatergic neurons fire coherently at theta frequencies. Aβ increases the firing rate of glutamatergic neurons while nonglutamatergic neurons lose theta...... firing coherence. Our results demonstrate that Aβ-induced dysfunction of glutamatergic neurons via IM decrease diminishes MS rhythmicity, which may negatively affect hippocampal rhythmogenesis and underlie the memory loss observed in Alzheimer's disease....

  11. Differential gene expression patterns in developing sexually dimorphic rat brain regions exposed to antiandrogenic, estrogenic, or complex endocrine disruptor mixtures: glutamatergic synapses as target.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lichtensteiger, Walter; Bassetti-Gaille, Catherine; Faass, Oliver; Axelstad, Marta; Boberg, Julie; Christiansen, Sofie; Rehrauer, Hubert; Georgijevic, Jelena Kühn; Hass, Ulla; Kortenkamp, Andreas; Schlumpf, Margret

    2015-04-01

    The study addressed the question whether gene expression patterns induced by different mixtures of endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) administered in a higher dose range, corresponding to 450×, 200×, and 100× high-end human exposure levels, could be characterized in developing brain with respect to endocrine activity of mixture components, and which developmental processes were preferentially targeted. Three EDC mixtures, A-Mix (anti-androgenic mixture) with 8 antiandrogenic chemicals (di-n-butylphthalate, diethylhexylphthalate, vinclozolin, prochloraz, procymidone, linuron, epoxiconazole, and DDE), E-Mix (estrogenic mixture) with 4 estrogenic chemicals (bisphenol A, 4-methylbenzylidene camphor, 2-ethylhexyl 4-methoxycinnamate, and butylparaben), a complex mixture, AEP-Mix, containing the components of A-Mix and E-Mix plus paracetamol, and paracetamol alone, were administered by oral gavage to rat dams from gestation day 7 until weaning. General developmental endpoints were not affected by EDC mixtures or paracetamol. Gene expression was analyzed on postnatal day 6, during sexual brain differentiation, by exon microarray in medial preoptic area in the high-dose group, and by real-time RT-PCR in medial preoptic area and ventromedial hypothalamus in all dose groups. Expression patterns were mixture, sex, and region specific. Effects of the analgesic drug paracetamol, which exhibits antiandrogenic activity in peripheral systems, differed from those of A-Mix. All mixtures had a strong, mixture-specific impact on genes encoding for components of excitatory glutamatergic synapses and genes controlling migration and pathfinding of glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons, as well as genes linked with increased risk of autism spectrum disorders. Because development of glutamatergic synapses is regulated by sex steroids also in hippocampus, this may represent a general target of ECD mixtures.

  12. Exogenous Alpha-Synuclein Alters Pre- and Post-Synaptic Activity by Fragmenting Lipid Rafts

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    Marco Emanuele

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Alpha-synuclein (αSyn interferes with multiple steps of synaptic activity at pre-and post-synaptic terminals, however the mechanism/s by which αSyn alters neurotransmitter release and synaptic potentiation is unclear. By atomic force microscopy we show that human αSyn, when incubated with reconstituted membrane bilayer, induces lipid rafts' fragmentation. As a consequence, ion channels and receptors are displaced from lipid rafts with consequent changes in their activity. The enhanced calcium entry leads to acute mobilization of synaptic vesicles, and exhaustion of neurotransmission at later stages. At the post-synaptic terminal, an acute increase in glutamatergic transmission, with increased density of PSD-95 puncta, is followed by disruption of the interaction between N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor (NMDAR and PSD-95 with ensuing decrease of long term potentiation. While cholesterol loading prevents the acute effect of αSyn at the presynapse; inhibition of casein kinase 2, which appears activated by reduction of cholesterol, restores the correct localization and clustering of NMDARs.

  13. Stress, trauma and PTSD: translational insights into the core synaptic circuitry and its modulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bennett, Maxwell R; Hatton, Sean N; Lagopoulos, Jim

    2016-06-01

    Evidence is considered as to whether behavioral criteria for diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are applicable to that of traumatized animals and whether the phenomena of acquisition, extinction and reactivation of fear behavior in animals are also successfully applicable to humans. This evidence suggests an affirmative answer in both cases. Furthermore, the deficits in gray matter found in PTSD, determined with magnetic resonance imaging, are also observed in traumatized animals, lending neuropsychological support to the use of animals to probe what has gone awry in PTSD. Such animal experiments indicate that the core synaptic circuitry mediating behavior following trauma consists of the amygdala, ventral-medial prefrontal cortex and hippocampus, all of which are modulated by the basal ganglia. It is not clear if this is the case in PTSD as the observations using fMRI are equivocal and open to technical objections. Nevertheless, the effects of the basal ganglia in controlling glutamatergic synaptic transmission through dopaminergic and serotonergic synaptic mechanisms in the core synaptic circuitry provides a ready explanation for why modifying these mechanisms delays extinction in animal models and predisposes towards PTSD. In addition, changes of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in the core synaptic circuitry have significant effects on acquisition and extinction in animal experiments with single nucleotide polymorphisms in the BDNF gene predisposing to PTSD.

  14. MAGUKs: multifaceted synaptic organizers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Won, Sehoon; Levy, Jon M; Nicoll, Roger A; Roche, Katherine W

    2017-04-01

    The PSD-95 family of proteins, known as MAGUKs, have long been recognized to be central building blocks of the PSD. They are categorized as scaffolding proteins, which link surface-expressed receptors to the intracellular signaling molecules. Although the four members of the PSD-95 family (PSD-95, PSD-93, SAP102, and SAP97) have many shared roles in regulating synaptic function, recent studies have begun to delineate specific binding partners and roles in plasticity. In the current review, we will highlight the conserved and unique roles of these proteins. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  15. The temporoammonic input to the hippocampal CA1 region displays distinctly different synaptic plasticity compared to the Schaffer collateral input in vivo: significance for synaptic information processing

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    Ayla eAksoy Aksel

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available In terms of its sub-regional differentiation, the hippocampal CA1 region receives cortical information directly via the perforant (temporoammonic path (pp-CA1 synapse and indirectly via the tri-synaptic pathway where the last relay station is the Schaffer collateral-CA1 synapse (Sc-CA1 synapse. Research to date on pp-CA1 synapses has been conducted predominantly in vitro and never in awake animals, but these studies hint that information processing at this synapse might be distinct to processing at the Sc-CA1 synapse. Here, we characterized synaptic properties and synaptic plasticity at the pp-CA1 synapse of freely behaving adult rats. We established that field excitatory postsynaptic potentials at the pp-CA1 have longer onset latencies and a shorter time-to-peak compared to the Sc-CA1 synapse. LTP (> 24h was successfully evoked by tetanic afferent stimulation of pp-CA1 synapses. Low frequency stimulation evoked synaptic depression at Sc-CA1 synapses, but did not elicit LTD at pp-CA1 synapses unless the Schaffer collateral afferents to the CA1 region had been severed. Paired-pulse responses also showed significant differences. Our data suggest that synaptic plasticity at the pp-CA1 synapse is distinct from the Sc-CA1 synapse and that this may reflect its specific role in hippocampal information processing.

  16. Calcium current homeostasis and synaptic deficits in hippocampal neurons from Kelch-like 1 knockout mice

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    Paula Patricia Perissinotti

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Kelch-like 1 (KLHL1 is a neuronal actin-binding protein that modulates voltage-gated CaV2.1 (P/Q-type and CaV3.2 (α1H T-type calcium channels; KLHL1 knockdown experiments (KD cause down-regulation of both channel types and altered synaptic properties in cultured rat hippocampal neurons (Perissinotti et al., 2014. Here, we studied the effect of ablation of KLHL1 on calcium channel function and synaptic properties in cultured hippocampal neurons from KLHL1 knockout (KO mice. Western blot data showed the P/Q-type channel α1A subunit was less abundant in KO hippocampus compared to wildtype (WT; and PQ-type calcium currents were smaller in KO neurons than WT during early days in vitro, although this decrease was compensated for at late stages by increases in L-type calcium current. In contrast, T-type currents did not change in culture. However, biophysical properties and western blot analysis revealed a differential contribution of T-type channel isoforms in the KO, with CaV3.2 α1H subunit being down-regulated and CaV3.1 α1G up-regulated. Synapsin I levels were reduced in the KO hippocampus; cultured neurons displayed a concomitant reduction in synapsin I puncta and decreased miniature excitatory postsynaptic current (mEPSC frequency. In summary, genetic ablation of the calcium channel modulator resulted in compensatory mechanisms to maintain calcium current homeostasis in hippocampal KO neurons; however, synaptic alterations resulted in a reduction of excitatory synapse number, causing an imbalance of the excitatory-inhibitory synaptic input ratio favoring inhibition.

  17. Short-term Synaptic Depression in the Feedforward Inhibitory Circuit in the Dorsal Lateral Geniculate Nucleus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Augustinaite, Sigita; Heggelund, Paul

    2018-05-24

    Synaptic short-term plasticity (STP) regulates synaptic transmission in an activity-dependent manner and thereby has important roles in the signal processing in the brain. In some synapses, a presynaptic train of action potentials elicits post-synaptic potentials that gradually increase during the train (facilitation), but in other synapses, these potentials gradually decrease (depression). We studied STP in neurons in the visual thalamic relay, the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN). The dLGN contains two types of neurons: excitatory thalamocortical (TC) neurons, which transfer signals from retinal afferents to visual cortex, and local inhibitory interneurons, which form an inhibitory feedforward loop that regulates the thalamocortical signal transmission. The overall STP in the retino-thalamic relay is short-term depression, but the distinct kind and characteristics of the plasticity at the different types of synapses are unknown. We studied STP in the excitatory responses of interneurons to stimulation of retinal afferents, in the inhibitory responses of TC neurons to stimulation of afferents from interneurons, and in the disynaptic inhibitory responses of TC neurons to stimulation of retinal afferents. Moreover, we studied STP at the direct excitatory input to TC neurons from retinal afferents. The STP at all types of the synapses showed short-term depression. This depression can accentuate rapid changes in the stream of signals and thereby promote detectability of significant features in the sensory input. In vision, detection of edges and contours is essential for object perception, and the synaptic short-term depression in the early visual pathway provides important contributions to this detection process. Copyright © 2018 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Synaptic Impairment in Layer 1 of the Prefrontal Cortex Induced by Repeated Stress During Adolescence is Reversed in Adulthood

    Science.gov (United States)

    Negrón-Oyarzo, Ignacio; Dagnino-Subiabre, Alexies; Muñoz Carvajal, Pablo

    2015-01-01

    Chronic stress is a risk factor for the development of psychiatric disorders, some of which involve dysfunction of the prefrontal cortex (PFC). There is a higher prevalence of these chronic stress-related psychiatric disorders during adolescence, when the PFC has not yet fully matured. In the present work we studied the effect of repeated stress during adolescence on synaptic function in the PFC in adolescence and adulthood. To this end, adolescent Sprague-Dawley rats were subjected to seven consecutive days of restraint stress. Afterward, both synaptic transmission and short- and long-term synaptic plasticity were evaluated in layer 1 of medial-PFC (mPFC) slices from adolescent and adult rats. We found that repeated stress significantly reduced the amplitude of evoked field excitatory post-synaptic potential (fEPSP) in the mPFC. Isolation of excitatory transmission reveled that lower-amplitude fEPSPs were associated with a reduction in α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA) receptor-mediated transmission. We also found that repeated stress significantly decreased long-term depression (LTD). Interestingly, AMPA/kainate receptor-mediated transmission and LTD were recovered in adult animals that experienced a three-week stress-free recovery period. The data indicates that the changes in synaptic transmission and plasticity in the mPFC induced by repeated stress during adolescence are reversed in adulthood after a stress-free period. PMID:26617490

  19. Repeated Neck Restraint Stress Bidirectionally Modulates Excitatory Transmission in the Dentate Gyrus and Performance in a Hippocampus-dependent Memory Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spyrka, Jadwiga; Hess, Grzegorz

    2018-05-21

    The consequences of stress depend on characteristics of the stressor, including the duration of exposure, severity, and predictability. Exposure of mice to repeated neck restraint has been shown to bidirectionally modulate the potential for long-term potentiation (LTP) in the dentate gyrus (DG) in a manner dependent on the number of restraint repetitions, but the influence of repeated brief neck restraint on electrophysiology of single DG neurons has not yet been investigated. Here, we aimed at finding the effects of 1, 3, 7, 14, or 21 daily neck restraint sessions lasting 10 min on electrophysiological characteristics of DG granule cells as well as excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs to these neurons. While the excitability of DG granule cells and inhibitory synaptic transmission were unchanged, neck restraint decreased the frequency of spontaneous excitatory currents after three repetitions but enhanced it after 14 and 21 repetitions. The consequences of repeated neck restraint on hippocampus-dependent memory were investigated using the object location test (OLT). Neck restraint stress impaired cognitive performance in the OLT after three repetitions but improved it after 14 and 21 repetitions. Mice subjected to three neck restraint sessions displayed an increase in the measures of depressive and anxiety-like behaviors, however, prolongation of the exposure to neck restraint resulted in a gradual decline in the intensity of these measures. These data indicate that stress imposed by an increasing number of repeated neck restraint episodes bidirectionally modulates both excitatory synaptic transmission in the DG and cognitive performance in the object location memory task. Copyright © 2018 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Lack of Cdkl5 disrupts the organization of excitatory and inhibitory synapses and parvalbumin interneurons in the primary visual cortex

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    Riccardo Pizzo

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available CDKL5 (cyclin-dependent kinase-like 5 mutations are found in severe neurodevelopmental disorders, including the Hanefeld variant of Rett syndrome (CDKL5 disorder. CDKL5 loss-of-function murine models recapitulate pathological signs of the human disease, such as visual attention deficits and reduced visual acuity. Here we investigated the cellular and synaptic substrates of visual defects by studying the organization of the primary visual cortex (V1 of Cdkl5-/y mice. We found a severe reduction of c-fos expression in V1 of Cdkl5-/y mutants, suggesting circuit hypoactivity. Glutamatergic presynaptic structures were increased, but postsynaptic PSD-95 and Homer were significantly downregulated in CDKL5 mutants. Interneurons expressing parvalbumin, but not other types of interneuron, had a higher density in mutant V1, and were hyperconnected with pyramidal neurons. Finally, the developmental trajectory of pavalbumin-containing cells was also affected in Cdkl5-/y mice, as revealed by fainter appearance perineuronal nets at the closure of the critical period. The present data reveal an overall disruption of V1 cellular and synaptic organization that may cause a shift in the excitation/inhibition balance likely to underlie the visual deficits characteristic of CDKL5 disorder. Moreover, ablation of CDKL5 is likely to tamper with the mechanisms underlying experience-dependent refinement of cortical circuits during the critical period of development.

  1. Lack of Cdkl5 Disrupts the Organization of Excitatory and Inhibitory Synapses and Parvalbumin Interneurons in the Primary Visual Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pizzo, Riccardo; Gurgone, Antonia; Castroflorio, Enrico; Amendola, Elena; Gross, Cornelius; Sassoè-Pognetto, Marco; Giustetto, Maurizio

    2016-01-01

    Cyclin-dependent kinase-like 5 (CDKL5) mutations are found in severe neurodevelopmental disorders, including the Hanefeld variant of Rett syndrome (RTT; CDKL5 disorder). CDKL5 loss-of-function murine models recapitulate pathological signs of the human disease, such as visual attention deficits and reduced visual acuity. Here we investigated the cellular and synaptic substrates of visual defects by studying the organization of the primary visual cortex (V1) of Cdkl5 -/y mice. We found a severe reduction of c-Fos expression in V1 of Cdkl5 -/y mutants, suggesting circuit hypoactivity. Glutamatergic presynaptic structures were increased, but postsynaptic PSD-95 and Homer were significantly downregulated in CDKL5 mutants. Interneurons expressing parvalbumin, but not other types of interneuron, had a higher density in mutant V1, and were hyperconnected with pyramidal neurons. Finally, the developmental trajectory of pavalbumin-containing cells was also affected in Cdkl5 -/y mice, as revealed by fainter appearance perineuronal nets at the closure of the critical period (CP). The present data reveal an overall disruption of V1 cellular and synaptic organization that may cause a shift in the excitation/inhibition balance likely to underlie the visual deficits characteristic of CDKL5 disorder. Moreover, ablation of CDKL5 is likely to tamper with the mechanisms underlying experience-dependent refinement of cortical circuits during the CP of development.

  2. Effects of homeostatic constraints on associative memory storage and synaptic connectivity of cortical circuits

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julio eChapeton

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The impact of learning and long-term memory storage on synaptic connectivity is not completely understood. In this study, we examine the effects of associative learning on synaptic connectivity in adult cortical circuits by hypothesizing that these circuits function in a steady-state, in which the memory capacity of a circuit is maximal and learning must be accompanied by forgetting. Steady-state circuits should be characterized by unique connectivity features. To uncover such features we developed a biologically constrained, exactly solvable model of associative memory storage. The model is applicable to networks of multiple excitatory and inhibitory neuron classes and can account for homeostatic constraints on the number and the overall weight of functional connections received by each neuron. The results show that in spite of a large number of neuron classes, functional connections between potentially connected cells are realized with less than 50% probability if the presynaptic cell is excitatory and generally a much greater probability if it is inhibitory. We also find that constraining the overall weight of presynaptic connections leads to Gaussian connection weight distributions that are truncated at zero. In contrast, constraining the total number of functional presynaptic connections leads to non-Gaussian distributions, in which weak connections are absent. These theoretical predictions are compared with a large dataset of published experimental studies reporting amplitudes of unitary postsynaptic potentials and probabilities of connections between various classes of excitatory and inhibitory neurons in the cerebellum, neocortex, and hippocampus.

  3. Synaptic electronics: materials, devices and applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuzum, Duygu; Yu, Shimeng; Wong, H-S Philip

    2013-09-27

    In this paper, the recent progress of synaptic electronics is reviewed. The basics of biological synaptic plasticity and learning are described. The material properties and electrical switching characteristics of a variety of synaptic devices are discussed, with a focus on the use of synaptic devices for neuromorphic or brain-inspired computing. Performance metrics desirable for large-scale implementations of synaptic devices are illustrated. A review of recent work on targeted computing applications with synaptic devices is presented.

  4. Synaptic electronics: materials, devices and applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kuzum, Duygu; Yu, Shimeng; Philip Wong, H-S

    2013-01-01

    In this paper, the recent progress of synaptic electronics is reviewed. The basics of biological synaptic plasticity and learning are described. The material properties and electrical switching characteristics of a variety of synaptic devices are discussed, with a focus on the use of synaptic devices for neuromorphic or brain-inspired computing. Performance metrics desirable for large-scale implementations of synaptic devices are illustrated. A review of recent work on targeted computing applications with synaptic devices is presented. (topical review)

  5. Glutamatergic model psychoses: prediction error, learning, and inference.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corlett, Philip R; Honey, Garry D; Krystal, John H; Fletcher, Paul C

    2011-01-01

    Modulating glutamatergic neurotransmission induces alterations in conscious experience that mimic the symptoms of early psychotic illness. We review studies that use intravenous administration of ketamine, focusing on interindividual variability in the profundity of the ketamine experience. We will consider this individual variability within a hypothetical model of brain and cognitive function centered upon learning and inference. Within this model, the brains, neural systems, and even single neurons specify expectations about their inputs and responding to violations of those expectations with new learning that renders future inputs more predictable. We argue that ketamine temporarily deranges this ability by perturbing both the ways in which prior expectations are specified and the ways in which expectancy violations are signaled. We suggest that the former effect is predominantly mediated by NMDA blockade and the latter by augmented and inappropriate feedforward glutamatergic signaling. We suggest that the observed interindividual variability emerges from individual differences in neural circuits that normally underpin the learning and inference processes described. The exact source for that variability is uncertain, although it is likely to arise not only from genetic variation but also from subjects' previous experiences and prior learning. Furthermore, we argue that chronic, unlike acute, NMDA blockade alters the specification of expectancies more profoundly and permanently. Scrutinizing individual differences in the effects of acute and chronic ketamine administration in the context of the Bayesian brain model may generate new insights about the symptoms of psychosis; their underlying cognitive processes and neurocircuitry.

  6. Glutamatergic neurometabolites during early abstinence from chronic methamphetamine abuse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Neill, Joseph; Tobias, Marc C; Hudkins, Matthew; London, Edythe D

    2014-10-31

    The acute phase of abstinence from methamphetamine abuse is critical for rehabilitation success. Proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy has detected below-normal levels of glutamate+glutamine in anterior middle cingulate of chronic methamphetamine abusers during early abstinence, attributed to abstinence-induced downregulation of the glutamatergic systems in the brain. This study further explored this phenomenon. We measured glutamate+glutamine in additional cortical regions (midline posterior cingulate, midline precuneus, and bilateral inferior frontal cortex) putatively affected by methamphetamine. We examined the relationship between glutamate+glutamine in each region with duration of methamphetamine abuse as well as the depressive symptoms of early abstinence. Magnetic resonance spectroscopic imaging was acquired at 1.5 T from a methamphetamine group of 44 adults who had chronically abused methamphetamine and a control group of 23 age-, sex-, and tobacco smoking-matched healthy volunteers. Participants in the methamphetamine group were studied as inpatients during the first week of abstinence from the drug and were not receiving treatment. In the methamphetamine group, small but significant (5-15%, Pright inferior frontal cortex; glutamate+glutamine in posterior cingulate was negatively correlated (Pabuse. The Beck Depression Inventory score was negatively correlated (Pright inferior frontal cortex. Our findings support the idea that glutamatergic metabolism is downregulated in early abstinence in multiple cortical regions. The extent of downregulation may vary with length of abuse and may be associated with severity of depressive symptoms emergent in early recovery. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of CINP.

  7. Functional significance of brain glycogen in sustaining glutamatergic neurotransmission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sickmann, Helle M; Walls, Anne B; Schousboe, Arne; Bouman, Stephan D; Waagepetersen, Helle S

    2009-05-01

    The involvement of brain glycogen in sustaining neuronal activity has previously been demonstrated. However, to what extent energy derived from glycogen is consumed by astrocytes themselves or is transferred to the neurons in the form of lactate for oxidative metabolism to proceed is at present unclear. The significance of glycogen in fueling glutamate uptake into astrocytes was specifically addressed in cultured astrocytes. Moreover, the objective was to elucidate whether glycogen derived energy is important for maintaining glutamatergic neurotransmission, induced by repetitive exposure to NMDA in co-cultures of cerebellar neurons and astrocytes. In the astrocytes it was shown that uptake of the glutamate analogue D-[3H]aspartate was impaired when glycogen degradation was inhibited irrespective of the presence of glucose, signifying that energy derived from glycogen degradation is important for the astrocytic compartment. By inhibiting glycogen degradation in co-cultures it was evident that glycogen provides energy to sustain glutamatergic neurotransmission, i.e. release and uptake of glutamate. The relocation of glycogen derived lactate to the neuronal compartment was investigated by employing d-lactate, a competitive substrate for the monocarboxylate transporters. Neurotransmitter release was affected by the presence of d-lactate indicating that glycogen derived energy is important not only in the astrocytic but also in the neuronal compartment.

  8. Electrical field stimulation-induced excitatory responses of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    effect of the endothelium on electrical field stimulation (EFS)-induced excitatory responses of pulmonary artery segments from pulmonary hypertensive rats. Methods: Pulmonary hypertension was induced in rats with a single dose of monocrotaline (60 mg/kg) and 21 days later, arterial rings were set up for isometric tension ...

  9. GABA Metabolism and Transport: Effects on Synaptic Efficacy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabian C. Roth

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available GABAergic inhibition is an important regulator of excitability in neuronal networks. In addition, inhibitory synaptic signals contribute crucially to the organization of spatiotemporal patterns of network activity, especially during coherent oscillations. In order to maintain stable network states, the release of GABA by interneurons must be plastic in timing and amount. This homeostatic regulation is achieved by several pre- and postsynaptic mechanisms and is triggered by various activity-dependent local signals such as excitatory input or ambient levels of neurotransmitters. Here, we review findings on the availability of GABA for release at presynaptic terminals of interneurons. Presynaptic GABA content seems to be an important determinant of inhibitory efficacy and can be differentially regulated by changing synthesis, transport, and degradation of GABA or related molecules. We will discuss the functional impact of such regulations on neuronal network patterns and, finally, point towards pharmacological approaches targeting these processes.

  10. Developmental profiles of the intrinsic properties and synaptic function of auditory neurons in preterm and term baboon neonates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Sei Eun; Lee, Seul Yi; Blanco, Cynthia L; Kim, Jun Hee

    2014-08-20

    The human fetus starts to hear and undergoes major developmental changes in the auditory system during the third trimester of pregnancy. Although there are significant data regarding development of the auditory system in rodents, changes in intrinsic properties and synaptic function of auditory neurons in developing primate brain at hearing onset are poorly understood. We performed whole-cell patch-clamp recordings of principal neurons in the medial nucleus of trapezoid body (MNTB) in preterm and term baboon brainstem slices to study the structural and functional maturation of auditory synapses. Each MNTB principal neuron received an excitatory input from a single calyx of Held terminal, and this one-to-one pattern of innervation was already formed in preterm baboons delivered at 67% of normal gestation. There was no difference in frequency or amplitude of spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic synaptic currents between preterm and term MNTB neurons. In contrast, the frequency of spontaneous GABA(A)/glycine receptor-mediated inhibitory postsynaptic synaptic currents, which were prevalent in preterm MNTB neurons, was significantly reduced in term MNTB neurons. Preterm MNTB neurons had a higher input resistance than term neurons and fired in bursts, whereas term MNTB neurons fired a single action potential in response to suprathreshold current injection. The maturation of intrinsic properties and dominance of excitatory inputs in the primate MNTB allow it to take on its mature role as a fast and reliable relay synapse. Copyright © 2014 the authors 0270-6474/14/3411399-06$15.00/0.

  11. Spike Pattern Structure Influences Synaptic Efficacy Variability Under STDP and Synaptic Homeostasis. II: Spike Shuffling Methods on LIF Networks

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    Zedong Bi

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Synapses may undergo variable changes during plasticity because of the variability of spike patterns such as temporal stochasticity and spatial randomness. Here, we call the variability of synaptic weight changes during plasticity to be efficacy variability. In this paper, we investigate how four aspects of spike pattern statistics (i.e., synchronous firing, burstiness/regularity, heterogeneity of rates and heterogeneity of cross-correlations influence the efficacy variability under pair-wise additive spike-timing dependent plasticity (STDP and synaptic homeostasis (the mean strength of plastic synapses into a neuron is bounded, by implementing spike shuffling methods onto spike patterns self-organized by a network of excitatory and inhibitory leaky integrate-and-fire (LIF neurons. With the increase of the decay time scale of the inhibitory synaptic currents, the LIF network undergoes a transition from asynchronous state to weak synchronous state and then to synchronous bursting state. We first shuffle these spike patterns using a variety of methods, each designed to evidently change a specific pattern statistics; and then investigate the change of efficacy variability of the synapses under STDP and synaptic homeostasis, when the neurons in the network fire according to the spike patterns before and after being treated by a shuffling method. In this way, we can understand how the change of pattern statistics may cause the change of efficacy variability. Our results are consistent with those of our previous study which implements spike-generating models on converging motifs. We also find that burstiness/regularity is important to determine the efficacy variability under asynchronous states, while heterogeneity of cross-correlations is the main factor to cause efficacy variability when the network moves into synchronous bursting states (the states observed in epilepsy.

  12. Synaptic Plasticity and Excitation-Inhibition Balance in the Dentate Gyrus: Insights from In Vivo Recordings in Neuroligin-1, Neuroligin-2, and Collybistin Knockouts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jedlicka, Peter; Muellerleile, Julia; Schwarzacher, Stephan W

    2018-01-01

    The hippocampal dentate gyrus plays a role in spatial learning and memory and is thought to encode differences between similar environments. The integrity of excitatory and inhibitory transmission and a fine balance between them is essential for efficient processing of information. Therefore, identification and functional characterization of crucial molecular players at excitatory and inhibitory inputs is critical for understanding the dentate gyrus function. In this minireview, we discuss recent studies unraveling molecular mechanisms of excitatory/inhibitory synaptic transmission, long-term synaptic plasticity, and dentate granule cell excitability in the hippocampus of live animals. We focus on the role of three major postsynaptic proteins localized at excitatory (neuroligin-1) and inhibitory synapses (neuroligin-2 and collybistin). In vivo recordings of field potentials have the advantage of characterizing the effects of the loss of these proteins on the input-output function of granule cells embedded in a network with intact connectivity. The lack of neuroligin-1 leads to deficient synaptic plasticity and reduced excitation but normal granule cell output, suggesting unaltered excitation-inhibition ratio. In contrast, the lack of neuroligin-2 and collybistin reduces inhibition resulting in a shift towards excitation of the dentate circuitry.

  13. Synaptic Plasticity and Excitation-Inhibition Balance in the Dentate Gyrus: Insights from In Vivo Recordings in Neuroligin-1, Neuroligin-2, and Collybistin Knockouts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Jedlicka

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The hippocampal dentate gyrus plays a role in spatial learning and memory and is thought to encode differences between similar environments. The integrity of excitatory and inhibitory transmission and a fine balance between them is essential for efficient processing of information. Therefore, identification and functional characterization of crucial molecular players at excitatory and inhibitory inputs is critical for understanding the dentate gyrus function. In this minireview, we discuss recent studies unraveling molecular mechanisms of excitatory/inhibitory synaptic transmission, long-term synaptic plasticity, and dentate granule cell excitability in the hippocampus of live animals. We focus on the role of three major postsynaptic proteins localized at excitatory (neuroligin-1 and inhibitory synapses (neuroligin-2 and collybistin. In vivo recordings of field potentials have the advantage of characterizing the effects of the loss of these proteins on the input-output function of granule cells embedded in a network with intact connectivity. The lack of neuroligin-1 leads to deficient synaptic plasticity and reduced excitation but normal granule cell output, suggesting unaltered excitation-inhibition ratio. In contrast, the lack of neuroligin-2 and collybistin reduces inhibition resulting in a shift towards excitation of the dentate circuitry.

  14. Up-Regulation of Excitatory Amino Acid Transporters EAAT1 and EAAT2 by ß-Klotho

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    Jamshed Warsi

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Background/Aims: Klotho, a transmembrane protein expressed in chorioid plexus of the brain, kidney, and several other tissues, is required for inhibition of 1,25(OH2D3 formation by FGF23. The extracellular domain of Klotho protein could be cleaved off, thus being released into blood or cerebrospinal fluid. At least in part by exerting β-glucuronidase activity, soluble klotho regulates several ion channels and carriers. Klotho protein deficiency accelerates the appearance of age related disorders including neurodegeneration and muscle wasting and eventually leads to premature death. The present study explored the effect of Klotho protein on the excitatory glutamate transporters EAAT1 (SLC1A3 and EAAT2 (SLC1A2, Na+ coupled carriers clearing excitatory amino acids from the synaptic cleft and thus participating in the regulation of neuronal excitability. Methods: cRNA encoding EAAT1 or EAAT2 was injected into Xenopus laevis oocytes and glutamate (2 mM-induced inward current (IGlu taken as measure of glutamate transport. Measurements were made without or with prior 24 h treatment with soluble ß-Klotho protein (30 ng/ml in the absence and presence of β-glucuronidase inhibitor D-saccharic acid 1,4-lactone monohydrate (DSAL,10 µM. Results: IGlu was observed in EAAT1 and in EAAT2 expressing oocytes but not in water injected oocytes. In both, EAAT1 and EAAT2 expressing oocytes IGlu was significantly increased by treatment with soluble ß-Klotho protein, an effect reversed by DSAL. Treatment with ß-klotho protein increased significantly the maximal transport rate without significantly modifying the affinity of the carriers. Conclusion: ß-Klotho up-regulates the excitatory glutamate transporters EAAT1 and EAAT2 and thus participates in the regulation of neuronal excitation.

  15. Nutritional State-Dependent Ghrelin Activation of Vasopressin Neurons via Retrograde Trans-Neuronal–Glial Stimulation of Excitatory GABA Circuits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haam, Juhee; Halmos, Katalin C.; Di, Shi

    2014-01-01

    Behavioral and physiological coupling between energy balance and fluid homeostasis is critical for survival. The orexigenic hormone ghrelin has been shown to stimulate the secretion of the osmoregulatory hormone vasopressin (VP), linking nutritional status to the control of blood osmolality, although the mechanism of this systemic crosstalk is unknown. Here, we show using electrophysiological recordings and calcium imaging in rat brain slices that ghrelin stimulates VP neurons in the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus (PVN) in a nutritional state-dependent manner by activating an excitatory GABAergic synaptic input via a retrograde neuronal–glial circuit. In slices from fasted rats, ghrelin activation of a postsynaptic ghrelin receptor, the growth hormone secretagogue receptor type 1a (GHS-R1a), in VP neurons caused the dendritic release of VP, which stimulated astrocytes to release the gliotransmitter adenosine triphosphate (ATP). ATP activation of P2X receptors excited presynaptic GABA neurons to increase GABA release, which was excitatory to the VP neurons. This trans-neuronal–glial retrograde circuit activated by ghrelin provides an alternative means of stimulation of VP release and represents a novel mechanism of neuronal control by local neuronal–glial circuits. It also provides a potential cellular mechanism for the physiological integration of energy and fluid homeostasis. PMID:24790191

  16. Up-Regulation of the Excitatory Amino Acid Transporters EAAT1 and EAAT2 by Mammalian Target of Rapamycin

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    Abeer Abousaab

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Background: The excitatory amino-acid transporters EAAT1 and EAAT2 clear glutamate from the synaptic cleft and thus terminate neuronal excitation. The carriers are subject to regulation by various kinases. The EAAT3 isoform is regulated by mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR. The present study thus explored whether mTOR influences transport by EAAT1 and/or EAAT2. Methods: cRNA encoding wild type EAAT1 (SLC1A3 or EAAT2 (SLC1A2 was injected into Xenopus oocytes without or with additional injection of cRNA encoding mTOR. Dual electrode voltage clamp was performed in order to determine electrogenic glutamate transport (IEAAT. EAAT2 protein abundance was determined utilizing chemiluminescence. Results: Appreciable IEAAT was observed in EAAT1 or EAAT2 expressing but not in water injected oocytes. IEAAT was significantly increased by coexpression of mTOR. Coexpression of mTOR increased significantly the maximal IEAAT in EAAT1 or EAAT2 expressing oocytes, without significantly modifying affinity of the carriers. Moreover, coexpression of mTOR increased significantly EAAT2 protein abundance in the cell membrane. Conclusions: The kinase mTOR up-regulates the excitatory amino acid transporters EAAT1 and EAAT2.

  17. Synaptic Modifications in the Medial Prefrontal Cortex in Susceptibility and Resilience to Stress

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    Wang, Minghui; Perova, Zinaida; Arenkiel, Benjamin R.

    2014-01-01

    When facing stress, most individuals are resilient whereas others are prone to developing mood disorders. The brain mechanisms underlying such divergent behavioral responses remain unclear. Here we used the learned helplessness procedure in mice to examine the role of the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC), a brain region highly implicated in both clinical and animal models of depression, in adaptive and maladaptive behavioral responses to stress. We found that uncontrollable and inescapable stress induced behavioral state-dependent changes in the excitatory synapses onto a subset of mPFC neurons: those that were activated during behavioral responses as indicated by their expression of the activity reporter c-Fos. Whereas synaptic potentiation was linked to learned helplessness, a depression-like behavior, synaptic weakening, was associated with resilience to stress. Notably, enhancing the activity of mPFC neurons using a chemical–genetic method was sufficient to convert the resilient behavior into helplessness. Our results provide direct evidence that mPFC dysfunction is linked to maladaptive behavioral responses to stress, and suggest that enhanced excitatory synaptic drive onto mPFC neurons may underlie the previously reported hyperactivity of this brain region in depression. PMID:24872553

  18. Somatodendritic and excitatory postsynaptic distribution of neuron-type dystrophin isoform, Dp40, in hippocampal neurons.

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    Fujimoto, Takahiro; Itoh, Kyoko; Yaoi, Takeshi; Fushiki, Shinji

    2014-09-12

    The Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) gene produces multiple dystrophin (Dp) products due to the presence of several promoters. We previously reported the existence of a novel short isoform of Dp, Dp40, in adult mouse brain. However, the exact biochemical expression profile and cytological distribution of the Dp40 protein remain unknown. In this study, we generated a polyclonal antibody against the NH2-terminal region of the Dp40 and identified the expression profile of Dp40 in the mouse brain. Through an analysis using embryonic and postnatal mouse cerebrums, we found that Dp40 emerged from the early neonatal stages until adulthood, whereas Dp71, an another Dp short isoform, was highly detected in both prenatal and postnatal cerebrums. Intriguingly, relative expressions of Dp40 and Dp71 were prominent in cultured dissociated neurons and non-neuronal cells derived from mouse hippocampus, respectively. Furthermore, the immunocytological distribution of Dp40 was analyzed in dissociated cultured neurons, revealing that Dp40 is detected in the soma and its dendrites, but not in the axon. It is worthy to note that Dp40 is localized along the subplasmalemmal region of the dendritic shafts, as well as at excitatory postsynaptic sites. Thus, Dp40 was identified as a neuron-type Dp possibly involving dendritic and synaptic functions. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Vasopressin facilitates excitatory transmission in slices of the rat dorso-lateral septum.

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    Van den Hooff, P; Urban, I J

    1990-01-01

    The effect of vasopressin on neurons of the rat dorso-lateral septum (DLS) was studied in brain slices with intracellular microelectrodes. Two out of 13 neurons showed a small depolarization, spontaneous activity, and increased input resistances following a 15 min exposure to 10(-6) to 10(-8) M vasopressin (VP). These membrane effects disappeared completely within 3-5 min after the application. The remaining DLS neurons treated with these vasopressin concentrations showed an increase in glutamate-mediated excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs), evoked by stimulation of the fimbria fibers. As little as 10(-12) MVP increased these EPSPs markedly in nearly 80% of the cells studied. This increase in most of the cells disappeared within 15 min after the application period, whereas the increase in EPSPs induced by 10(-10) M VP outlasted the peptide application period for more than 30 min. Neither the blockade of GABA-ergic synaptic inhibition nor the pre-treatment of the neurons with d(CH2)5-Tyr(Me)-arginine vasopressin or 2-amino-5-phosphonovaleric acid (2-APV), antagonists for the V1 type of vasopressin receptor and NMDA receptors, respectively, interfered with the EPSPs potentiating effect of the peptide. It is concluded that a type of vasopressin receptor other then the V1 type is involved in the long-lasting potentiation of the primarily non-NMDA receptor mediated transmission in DLS neurons.

  20. Isolation of Synaptosomes, Synaptic Plasma Membranes, and Synaptic Junctional Complexes.

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    Michaelis, Mary L; Jiang, Lei; Michaelis, Elias K

    2017-01-01

    Isolation of synaptic nerve terminals or synaptosomes provides an opportunity to study the process of neurotransmission at many levels and with a variety of approaches. For example, structural features of the synaptic terminals and the organelles within them, such as synaptic vesicles and mitochondria, have been elucidated with electron microscopy. The postsynaptic membranes are joined to the presynaptic "active zone" of transmitter release through cell adhesion molecules and remain attached throughout the isolation of synaptosomes. These "post synaptic densities" or "PSDs" contain the receptors for the transmitters released from the nerve terminals and can easily be seen with electron microscopy. Biochemical and cell biological studies with synaptosomes have revealed which proteins and lipids are most actively involved in synaptic release of neurotransmitters. The functional properties of the nerve terminals, such as responses to depolarization and the uptake or release of signaling molecules, have also been characterized through the use of fluorescent dyes, tagged transmitters, and transporter substrates. In addition, isolated synaptosomes can serve as the starting material for the isolation of relatively pure synaptic plasma membranes (SPMs) that are devoid of organelles from the internal environment of the nerve terminal, such as mitochondria and synaptic vesicles. The isolated SPMs can reseal and form vesicular structures in which transport of ions such as sodium and calcium, as well as solutes such as neurotransmitters can be studied. The PSDs also remain associated with the presynaptic membranes during isolation of SPM fractions, making it possible to isolate the synaptic junctional complexes (SJCs) devoid of the rest of the plasma membranes of the nerve terminals and postsynaptic membrane components. Isolated SJCs can be used to identify the proteins that constitute this highly specialized region of neurons. In this chapter, we describe the steps involved

  1. Long-term culture of astrocytes attenuates the readily releasable pool of synaptic vesicles.

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    Hiroyuki Kawano

    Full Text Available The astrocyte is a major glial cell type of the brain, and plays key roles in the formation, maturation, stabilization and elimination of synapses. Thus, changes in astrocyte condition and age can influence information processing at synapses. However, whether and how aging astrocytes affect synaptic function and maturation have not yet been thoroughly investigated. Here, we show the effects of prolonged culture on the ability of astrocytes to induce synapse formation and to modify synaptic transmission, using cultured autaptic neurons. By 9 weeks in culture, astrocytes derived from the mouse cerebral cortex demonstrated increases in β-galactosidase activity and glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP expression, both of which are characteristic of aging and glial activation in vitro. Autaptic hippocampal neurons plated on these aging astrocytes showed a smaller amount of evoked release of the excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate, and a lower frequency of miniature release of glutamate, both of which were attributable to a reduction in the pool of readily releasable synaptic vesicles. Other features of synaptogenesis and synaptic transmission were retained, for example the ability to induce structural synapses, the presynaptic release probability, the fraction of functional presynaptic nerve terminals, and the ability to recruit functional AMPA and NMDA glutamate receptors to synapses. Thus the presence of aging astrocytes affects the efficiency of synaptic transmission. Given that the pool of readily releasable vesicles is also small at immature synapses, our results are consistent with astrocytic aging leading to retarded synapse maturation.

  2. Spatiotemporal discrimination in neural networks with short-term synaptic plasticity

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    Shlaer, Benjamin; Miller, Paul

    2015-03-01

    Cells in recurrently connected neural networks exhibit bistability, which allows for stimulus information to persist in a circuit even after stimulus offset, i.e. short-term memory. However, such a system does not have enough hysteresis to encode temporal information about the stimuli. The biophysically described phenomenon of synaptic depression decreases synaptic transmission strengths due to increased presynaptic activity. This short-term reduction in synaptic strengths can destabilize attractor states in excitatory recurrent neural networks, causing the network to move along stimulus dependent dynamical trajectories. Such a network can successfully separate amplitudes and durations of stimuli from the number of successive stimuli. Stimulus number, duration and intensity encoding in randomly connected attractor networks with synaptic depression. Front. Comput. Neurosci. 7:59., and so provides a strong candidate network for the encoding of spatiotemporal information. Here we explicitly demonstrate the capability of a recurrent neural network with short-term synaptic depression to discriminate between the temporal sequences in which spatial stimuli are presented.

  3. Synaptic energy drives the information processing mechanisms in spiking neural networks.

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    El Laithy, Karim; Bogdan, Martin

    2014-04-01

    Flow of energy and free energy minimization underpins almost every aspect of naturally occurring physical mechanisms. Inspired by this fact this work establishes an energy-based framework that spans the multi-scale range of biological neural systems and integrates synaptic dynamic, synchronous spiking activity and neural states into one consistent working paradigm. Following a bottom-up approach, a hypothetical energy function is proposed for dynamic synaptic models based on the theoretical thermodynamic principles and the Hopfield networks. We show that a synapse exposes stable operating points in terms of its excitatory postsynaptic potential as a function of its synaptic strength. We postulate that synapses in a network operating at these stable points can drive this network to an internal state of synchronous firing. The presented analysis is related to the widely investigated temporal coherent activities (cell assemblies) over a certain range of time scales (binding-by-synchrony). This introduces a novel explanation of the observed (poly)synchronous activities within networks regarding the synaptic (coupling) functionality. On a network level the transitions from one firing scheme to the other express discrete sets of neural states. The neural states exist as long as the network sustains the internal synaptic energy.

  4. Operant conditioning of synaptic and spiking activity patterns in single hippocampal neurons.

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    Ishikawa, Daisuke; Matsumoto, Nobuyoshi; Sakaguchi, Tetsuya; Matsuki, Norio; Ikegaya, Yuji

    2014-04-02

    Learning is a process of plastic adaptation through which a neural circuit generates a more preferable outcome; however, at a microscopic level, little is known about how synaptic activity is patterned into a desired configuration. Here, we report that animals can generate a specific form of synaptic activity in a given neuron in the hippocampus. In awake, head-restricted mice, we applied electrical stimulation to the lateral hypothalamus, a reward-associated brain region, when whole-cell patch-clamped CA1 neurons exhibited spontaneous synaptic activity that met preset criteria. Within 15 min, the mice learned to generate frequently the excitatory synaptic input pattern that satisfied the criteria. This reinforcement learning of synaptic activity was not observed for inhibitory input patterns. When a burst unit activity pattern was conditioned in paired and nonpaired paradigms, the frequency of burst-spiking events increased and decreased, respectively. The burst reinforcement occurred in the conditioned neuron but not in other adjacent neurons; however, ripple field oscillations were concomitantly reinforced. Neural conditioning depended on activation of NMDA receptors and dopamine D1 receptors. Acutely stressed mice and depression model mice that were subjected to forced swimming failed to exhibit the neural conditioning. This learning deficit was rescued by repetitive treatment with fluoxetine, an antidepressant. Therefore, internally motivated animals are capable of routing an ongoing action potential series into a specific neural pathway of the hippocampal network.

  5. Mapping synaptic pathology within cerebral cortical circuits in subjects with schizophrenia

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    Robert Sweet

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Converging lines of evidence indicate that schizophrenia is characterized by impairments of synaptic machinery within cerebral cortical circuits. Efforts to localize these alterations in brain tissue from subjects with schizophrenia have frequently been limited to the quantification of structures that are non-selectively identified (e.g. dendritic spines labeled in Golgi preparations, axon boutons labeled with synaptophysin, or to quantification of proteins using methods unable to resolve relevant cellular compartments. Multiple label fluorescence confocal microscopy represents a means to circumvent many of these limitations, by concurrently extracting information regarding the number, morphology, and relative protein content of synaptic structures. An important adaptation required for studies of human disease is coupling this approach to stereologic methods for systematic random sampling of relevant brain regions. In this review article we consider the application of multiple label fluorescence confocal microscopy to the mapping of synaptic alterations in subjects with schizophrenia and describe the application of a novel, readily automated, iterative intensity/morphological segmentation algorithm for the extraction of information regarding synaptic structure number, size, and relative protein level from tissue sections obtained using unbiased stereological principles of sampling. In this context, we provide examples of the examination of pre- and post-synaptic structures within excitatory and inhibitory circuits of the cerebral cortex.

  6. Synaptic Conductance Estimates of the Connection Between Local Inhibitor Interneurons and Pyramidal Neurons in Layer 2/3 of a Cortical Column

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    Hoffmann, Jochen H.O.; Meyer, H. S.; Schmitt, Arno C.; Straehle, Jakob; Weitbrecht, Trinh; Sakmann, Bert; Helmstaedter, Moritz

    2015-01-01

    Stimulation of a principal whisker yields sparse action potential (AP) spiking in layer 2/3 (L2/3) pyramidal neurons in a cortical column of rat barrel cortex. The low AP rates in pyramidal neurons could be explained by activation of interneurons in L2/3 providing inhibition onto L2/3 pyramidal neurons. L2/3 interneurons classified as local inhibitors based on their axonal projection in the same column were reported to receive strong excitatory input from spiny neurons in L4, which are also the main source of the excitatory input to L2/3 pyramidal neurons. Here, we investigated the remaining synaptic connection in this intracolumnar microcircuit. We found strong and reliable inhibitory synaptic transmission between intracolumnar L2/3 local-inhibitor-to-L2/3 pyramidal neuron pairs [inhibitory postsynaptic potential (IPSP) amplitude −0.88 ± 0.67 mV]. On average, 6.2 ± 2 synaptic contacts were made by L2/3 local inhibitors onto L2/3 pyramidal neurons at 107 ± 64 µm path distance from the pyramidal neuron soma, thus overlapping with the distribution of synaptic contacts from L4 spiny neurons onto L2/3 pyramidal neurons (67 ± 34 µm). Finally, using compartmental simulations, we determined the synaptic conductance per synaptic contact to be 0.77 ± 0.4 nS. We conclude that the synaptic circuit from L4 to L2/3 can provide efficient shunting inhibition that is temporally and spatially aligned with the excitatory input from L4 to L2/3. PMID:25761638

  7. SAD-B kinase regulates pre-synaptic vesicular dynamics at hippocampal Schaffer collateral synapses and affects contextual fear memory.

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    Watabe, Ayako M; Nagase, Masashi; Hagiwara, Akari; Hida, Yamato; Tsuji, Megumi; Ochiai, Toshitaka; Kato, Fusao; Ohtsuka, Toshihisa

    2016-01-01

    Synapses of amphids defective (SAD)-A/B kinases control various steps in neuronal development and differentiation, such as axon specifications and maturation in central and peripheral nervous systems. At mature pre-synaptic terminals, SAD-B is associated with synaptic vesicles and the active zone cytomatrix; however, how SAD-B regulates neurotransmission and synaptic plasticity in vivo remains unclear. Thus, we used SAD-B knockout (KO) mice to study the function of this pre-synaptic kinase in the brain. We found that the paired-pulse ratio was significantly enhanced at Shaffer collateral synapses in the hippocampal CA1 region in SAD-B KO mice compared with wild-type littermates. We also found that the frequency of the miniature excitatory post-synaptic current was decreased in SAD-B KO mice. Moreover, synaptic depression following prolonged low-frequency synaptic stimulation was significantly enhanced in SAD-B KO mice. These results suggest that SAD-B kinase regulates vesicular release probability at pre-synaptic terminals and is involved in vesicular trafficking and/or regulation of the readily releasable pool size. Finally, we found that hippocampus-dependent contextual fear learning was significantly impaired in SAD-B KO mice. These observations suggest that SAD-B kinase plays pivotal roles in controlling vesicular release properties and regulating hippocampal function in the mature brain. Synapses of amphids defective (SAD)-A/B kinases control various steps in neuronal development and differentiation, but their roles in mature brains were only partially known. Here, we demonstrated, at mature pre-synaptic terminals, that SAD-B regulates vesicular release probability and synaptic plasticity. Moreover, hippocampus-dependent contextual fear learning was significantly impaired in SAD-B KO mice, suggesting that SAD-B kinase plays pivotal roles in controlling vesicular release properties and regulating hippocampal function in the mature brain. © 2015 International

  8. Synaptic dimorphism in Onychophoran cephalic ganglia

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    Z Peña-Contreras

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available The taxonomic location of the Onychophora has been controversial because of their phenotypic and genotypic characteristics, related to both annelids and arthropods. We analyzed the ultrastructure of the neurons and their synapses in the cephalic ganglion of a poorly known invertebrate, the velvet worm Peripatus sedgwicki, from the mountainous region of El Valle, Mérida, Venezuela. Cephalic ganglia were dissected, fixed and processed for transmission electron microscopy. The animal has a high degree of neurobiological development, as evidenced by the presence of asymmetric (excitatory and symmetric (inhibitory synapses, as well as the existence of glial cell processes in a wide neuropile zone. The postsynaptic terminals were seen to contain subsynaptic cisterns formed by membranes of smooth endoplasmic reticulum beneath the postsynaptic density, whereas the presynaptic terminal showed numerous electron transparent synaptic vesicles. From the neurophylogenetic perspectives, the ultrastructural characteristics of the central nervous tissue of the Onychophora show important evolutionary acquirements, such as the presence of both excitatory and inhibitory synapses, indicating functional synaptic transmission, and the appearance of mature glial cells. Rev. Biol . Trop. 55 (1: 261-267. Epub 2007 March. 31.Estudiamos la ultraestructura de las neuronas y sus sinapsis del ganglio cefálico de un invertebrado poco conocido del phylum Onychophora: Peripatus sedgwicki de los Andes Venezolanos, utilizando para ello la microscopía electrónica de transmisión. La localización taxonómica de los onicóforos ha sido controversial debido a sus características fenotípicas y genotípicas que los relacionan tanto con los anélidos como con los artrópodos. Para este trabajo se estudió el ganglio cefálico de P. sedgwicki de la zona montañosa de El Valle, Mérida, Venezuela. El ganglio cefálico se localiza en la región anterior del animal y fue diseccionado

  9. Secreted factors as synaptic organizers.

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    Johnson-Venkatesh, Erin M; Umemori, Hisashi

    2010-07-01

    A critical step in synaptic development is the differentiation of presynaptic and postsynaptic compartments. This complex process is regulated by a variety of secreted factors that serve as synaptic organizers. Specifically, fibroblast growth factors, Wnts, neurotrophic factors and various other intercellular signaling molecules are proposed to regulate presynaptic and/or postsynaptic differentiation. Many of these factors appear to function at both the neuromuscular junction and in the central nervous system, although the specific function of the molecules differs between the two. Here we review secreted molecules that organize the synaptic compartments and discuss how these molecules shape synaptic development, focusing on mammalian in vivo systems. Their critical role in shaping a functional neural circuit is underscored by their possible link to a wide range of neurological and psychiatric disorders both in animal models and by mutations identified in human patients. © The Authors (2010). Journal Compilation © Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  10. Synaptic Homeostasis and Allostasis in the Dentate Gyrus Caused by Inflammatory and Neuropathic Pain Conditions

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    Rui-Rui Wang

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available It has been generally accepted that pain can cause imbalance between excitation and inhibition (homeostasis at the synaptic level. However, it remains poorly understood how this imbalance (allostasis develops in the CNS under different pain conditions. Here, we analyzed the changes in both excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission and modulation of the dentate gyrus (DG under two pain conditions with different etiology and duration. First, it was revealed that the functions of the input-output (I/O curves for evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (eEPSCs following the perforant path (PP stimulation were gained under both acute inflammatory and chronic neuropathic pain conditions relative to the controls. However, the functions of I/O curves for the PP-evoked inhibitory postsynaptic currents (eIPSCs differed between the two conditions, namely it was greatly gained under inflammatory condition, but was reduced under neuropathic condition in reverse. Second, both the frequency and amplitude of miniature IPSCs (mIPSCs were increased under inflammatory condition, however a decrease in frequency of mIPSCs was observed under neuropathic condition. Finally, the spike discharge of the DG granule cells in response to current injection was significantly increased by neuropathic pain condition, however, no different change was found between inflammatory pain condition and the control. These results provide another line of evidence showing homeostatic and allostatic modulation of excitatory synaptic transmission by inhibitory controls under different pathological pain conditions, hence implicating use of different therapeutic approaches to maintain the homeostasis between excitation and inhibition while treating different conditions of pathological pain.

  11. Sequential dynamics in the motif of excitatory coupled elements

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    Korotkov, Alexander G.; Kazakov, Alexey O.; Osipov, Grigory V.

    2015-11-01

    In this article a new model of motif (small ensemble) of neuron-like elements is proposed. It is built with the use of the generalized Lotka-Volterra model with excitatory couplings. The main motivation for this work comes from the problems of neuroscience where excitatory couplings are proved to be the predominant type of interaction between neurons of the brain. In this paper it is shown that there are two modes depending on the type of coupling between the elements: the mode with a stable heteroclinic cycle and the mode with a stable limit cycle. Our second goal is to examine the chaotic dynamics of the generalized three-dimensional Lotka-Volterra model.

  12. Traveling wave front solutions in lateral-excitatory neuronal networks

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    Sittipong Ruktamatakul

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we discuss the shape of traveling wave front solutions to a neuronal model with the connection function to be of lateral excitation type. This means that close connecting cells have an inhibitory influence, while cells that aremore distant have an excitatory influence. We give results on the shape of the wave fronts solutions, which exhibit different shapes depend ing on the size of a threshold parameter.

  13. Synaptic impairment in layer 1 of the prefrontal cortex induced by repeated stress during adolescence is reversed in adulthood

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    Ignacio eNegron-Oyarzo

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Chronic stress is a risk factor for the development of psychiatric disorders, some of which involve dysfunction of the prefrontal cortex (PFC. There is a higher prevalence of these chronic stress-related psychiatric disorders during adolescence, when the PFC has not yet fully matured. In the present work we studied the effect of repeated stress during adolescence on synaptic function in the PFC in adolescence and adulthood. To this end, adolescent Sprague-Dawley rats were subjected to seven consecutive days of restraint stress. Afterward, both synaptic transmission and short- and long-term synaptic plasticity were evaluated in layer 1 of medial-PFC (mPFC slices from adolescent and adult rats. We found that repeated stress significantly reduced the amplitude of evoked field excitatory postsynaptic potential (fEPSP in the mPFC. Isolation of excitatory transmission reveled that lower-amplitude fEPSPs were associated with a reduction in AMPA/kainate receptor-mediated transmission. We also found that repeated stress significantly decreased long-term depression (LTD. Interestingly, AMPA/kainate receptor-mediated transmission and LTD were recovered in adult animals that experienced a three-week stress-free recovery period. The data indicates that the changes in synaptic transmission and plasticity in the mPFC induced by repeated stress during adolescence are reversed in adulthood after a stress-free period.

  14. Ensemble stacking mitigates biases in inference of synaptic connectivity.

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    Chambers, Brendan; Levy, Maayan; Dechery, Joseph B; MacLean, Jason N

    2018-01-01

    A promising alternative to directly measuring the anatomical connections in a neuronal population is inferring the connections from the activity. We employ simulated spiking neuronal networks to compare and contrast commonly used inference methods that identify likely excitatory synaptic connections using statistical regularities in spike timing. We find that simple adjustments to standard algorithms improve inference accuracy: A signing procedure improves the power of unsigned mutual-information-based approaches and a correction that accounts for differences in mean and variance of background timing relationships, such as those expected to be induced by heterogeneous firing rates, increases the sensitivity of frequency-based methods. We also find that different inference methods reveal distinct subsets of the synaptic network and each method exhibits different biases in the accurate detection of reciprocity and local clustering. To correct for errors and biases specific to single inference algorithms, we combine methods into an ensemble. Ensemble predictions, generated as a linear combination of multiple inference algorithms, are more sensitive than the best individual measures alone, and are more faithful to ground-truth statistics of connectivity, mitigating biases specific to single inference methods. These weightings generalize across simulated datasets, emphasizing the potential for the broad utility of ensemble-based approaches.

  15. Synaptic Wnt/GSK3β Signaling Hub in Autism

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    Caracci, Mario O.; Ávila, Miguel E.; De Ferrari, Giancarlo V.

    2016-01-01

    Hundreds of genes have been associated with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) and the interaction of weak and de novo variants derive from distinct autistic phenotypes thus making up the “spectrum.” The convergence of these variants in networks of genes associated with synaptic function warrants the study of cell signaling pathways involved in the regulation of the synapse. The Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway plays a central role in the development and regulation of the central nervous system and several genes belonging to the cascade have been genetically associated with ASDs. In the present paper, we review basic information regarding the role of Wnt/β-catenin signaling in excitatory/inhibitory balance (E/I balance) through the regulation of pre- and postsynaptic compartments. Furthermore, we integrate information supporting the role of the glycogen synthase kinase 3β (GSK3β) in the onset/development of ASDs through direct modulation of Wnt/β-catenin signaling. Finally, given GSK3β activity as key modulator of synaptic plasticity, we explore the potential of this kinase as a therapeutic target for ASD. PMID:26881141

  16. Emerging Links between Homeostatic Synaptic Plasticity and Neurological Disease

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    Dion eDickman

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Homeostatic signaling systems are ubiquitous forms of biological regulation, having been studied for hundreds of years in the context of diverse physiological processes including body temperature and osmotic balance. However, only recently has this concept been brought to the study of excitatory and inhibitory electrical activity that the nervous system uses to establish and maintain stable communication. Synapses are a primary target of neuronal regulation with a variety of studies over the past 15 years demonstrating that these cellular junctions are under bidirectional homeostatic control. Recent work from an array of diverse systems and approaches has revealed exciting new links between homeostatic synaptic plasticity and a variety of seemingly disparate neurological and psychiatric diseases. These include autism spectrum disorders, intellectual disabilities, schizophrenia, and Fragile X Syndrome. Although the molecular mechanisms through which defective homeostatic signaling may lead to disease pathogenesis remain unclear, rapid progress is likely to be made in the coming years using a powerful combination of genetic, imaging, electrophysiological, and next generation sequencing approaches. Importantly, understanding homeostatic synaptic plasticity at a cellular and molecular level may lead to developments in new therapeutic innovations to treat these diseases. In this review we will examine recent studies that demonstrate homeostatic control of postsynaptic protein translation, retrograde signaling, and presynaptic function that may contribute to the etiology of complex neurological and psychiatric diseases.

  17. Spectrotemporal dynamics of auditory cortical synaptic receptive field plasticity.

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    Froemke, Robert C; Martins, Ana Raquel O

    2011-09-01

    The nervous system must dynamically represent sensory information in order for animals to perceive and operate within a complex, changing environment. Receptive field plasticity in the auditory cortex allows cortical networks to organize around salient features of the sensory environment during postnatal development, and then subsequently refine these representations depending on behavioral context later in life. Here we review the major features of auditory cortical receptive field plasticity in young and adult animals, focusing on modifications to frequency tuning of synaptic inputs. Alteration in the patterns of acoustic input, including sensory deprivation and tonal exposure, leads to rapid adjustments of excitatory and inhibitory strengths that collectively determine the suprathreshold tuning curves of cortical neurons. Long-term cortical plasticity also requires co-activation of subcortical neuromodulatory control nuclei such as the cholinergic nucleus basalis, particularly in adults. Regardless of developmental stage, regulation of inhibition seems to be a general mechanism by which changes in sensory experience and neuromodulatory state can remodel cortical receptive fields. We discuss recent findings suggesting that the microdynamics of synaptic receptive field plasticity unfold as a multi-phase set of distinct phenomena, initiated by disrupting the balance between excitation and inhibition, and eventually leading to wide-scale changes to many synapses throughout the cortex. These changes are coordinated to enhance the representations of newly-significant stimuli, possibly for improved signal processing and language learning in humans. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Tourette syndrome and excitatory substances: is there a connection?

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    Zou, Li-Ping; Wang, Ying; Zhang, Li-Ping; Zhao, Jian-Bo; Lu, Jin-Fang; Liu, Qun; Wang, Hang-Yan

    2011-05-01

    The objective of this study is to investigate the relationship between excitatory substances by testing the urine in children with Tourette syndrome (TS). We performed a control study involving 44 patients with TS and 44 normal children by investigating the children's daily eating habits. We used the gas chromatograph-mass spectrometer and liquid chromatograph-mass spectrometer from Agilent. Substances for detection included 197 excitatory substances prohibited by the International Olympic Committee and other substances with similar chemical structures or biological functions for urine samples. Forty-four patients who did not take any drugs in the past 2 weeks enrolled in the study. The positive rate in the experiment group was three cases, while it was negative in the control group. The level of 1-testosterone increased in one extremely severe TS patient who ate large amounts of puffed food and drank an average of 350 ml of cola per day. Cathine and other substances with similar chemical constitution or similar biological effects increased in one severe TS patient who ate bags of instant noodles daily, according to the high score of the Yale Global Tic Severity Scale. An increase in ephedrine type, testosterone, and stimulants may be related to the pathogenesis of TS. Unhealthy food possibly causes TS. The relationship between excitatory substances and TS needs to be explored with the goal of providing more information on diagnosing and treating TS.

  19. Developmental changes in electrophysiological properties and a transition from electrical to chemical coupling between excitatory layer 4 neurons in the rat barrel cortex

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    Fliza eValiullina

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available During development, sensory systems switch from an immature to an adult mode of function along with the emergence of the active cortical states. Here, we used patch-clamp recordings from neocortical slices in vitro to characterize the developmental changes in the basic electrophysiological properties of excitatory L4 neurons and their connectivity before and after the developmental switch, which occurs in the rat barrel cortex in vivo at postnatal day P8. Prior to the switch, L4 neurons had lower resting membrane potentials, higher input resistance, lower membrane capacity, as well as action potentials (APs with smaller amplitudes, longer durations and higher AP thresholds compared to the neurons after the switch. A sustained firing pattern also emerged around the switch. Dual patch-clamp recordings from L4 neurons revealed that recurrent connections between L4 excitatory cells do not exist before and develop rapidly across the switch. In contrast, electrical coupling between these neurons waned around the switch. We suggest that maturation of electrophysiological features, particularly acquisition of a sustained firing pattern, and a transition from the immature electrical to mature chemical synaptic coupling between excitatory L4 neurons, contributes to the developmental switch in the cortical mode of function.

  20. Conditional Loss of Hoxa5 Function Early after Birth Impacts on Expression of Genes with Synaptic Function

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    Lizen, Benoit; Moens, Charlotte; Mouheiche, Jinane; Sacré, Thomas; Ahn, Marie-Thérèse; Jeannotte, Lucie; Salti, Ahmad; Gofflot, Françoise

    2017-01-01

    Hoxa5 is a member of the Hox gene family that plays critical roles in successive steps of the central nervous system formation during embryonic and fetal development. In the mouse, Hoxa5 was recently shown to be expressed in the medulla oblongata and the pons from fetal stages to adulthood. In these territories, Hoxa5 transcripts are enriched in many precerebellar neurons and several nuclei involved in autonomic functions, while the HOXA5 protein is detected mainly in glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons. However, whether HOXA5 is functionally required in these neurons after birth remains unknown. As a first approach to tackle this question, we aimed at determining the molecular programs downstream of the HOXA5 transcription factor in the context of the postnatal brainstem. A comparative transcriptomic analysis was performed in combination with gene expression localization, using a conditional postnatal Hoxa5 loss-of-function mouse model. After inactivation of Hoxa5 at postnatal days (P)1–P4, we established the transcriptome of the brainstem from P21 Hoxa5 conditional mutants using RNA-Seq analysis. One major finding was the downregulation of several genes associated with synaptic function in Hoxa5 mutant specimens including different actors involved in glutamatergic synapse, calcium signaling pathway, and GABAergic synapse. Data were confirmed and extended by reverse transcription quantitative polymerase chain reaction analysis, and the expression of several HOXA5 candidate targets was shown to co-localize with Hoxa5 transcripts in precerebellar nuclei. Together, these new results revealed that HOXA5, through the regulation of key actors of the glutamatergic/GABAergic synapses and calcium signaling, might be involved in synaptogenesis, synaptic transmission, and synaptic plasticity of the cortico-ponto-cerebellar circuitry in the postnatal brainstem. PMID:29187810

  1. Conditional Loss of Hoxa5 Function Early after Birth Impacts on Expression of Genes with Synaptic Function

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    Benoit Lizen

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Hoxa5 is a member of the Hox gene family that plays critical roles in successive steps of the central nervous system formation during embryonic and fetal development. In the mouse, Hoxa5 was recently shown to be expressed in the medulla oblongata and the pons from fetal stages to adulthood. In these territories, Hoxa5 transcripts are enriched in many precerebellar neurons and several nuclei involved in autonomic functions, while the HOXA5 protein is detected mainly in glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons. However, whether HOXA5 is functionally required in these neurons after birth remains unknown. As a first approach to tackle this question, we aimed at determining the molecular programs downstream of the HOXA5 transcription factor in the context of the postnatal brainstem. A comparative transcriptomic analysis was performed in combination with gene expression localization, using a conditional postnatal Hoxa5 loss-of-function mouse model. After inactivation of Hoxa5 at postnatal days (P1–P4, we established the transcriptome of the brainstem from P21 Hoxa5 conditional mutants using RNA-Seq analysis. One major finding was the downregulation of several genes associated with synaptic function in Hoxa5 mutant specimens including different actors involved in glutamatergic synapse, calcium signaling pathway, and GABAergic synapse. Data were confirmed and extended by reverse transcription quantitative polymerase chain reaction analysis, and the expression of several HOXA5 candidate targets was shown to co-localize with Hoxa5 transcripts in precerebellar nuclei. Together, these new results revealed that HOXA5, through the regulation of key actors of the glutamatergic/GABAergic synapses and calcium signaling, might be involved in synaptogenesis, synaptic transmission, and synaptic plasticity of the cortico-ponto-cerebellar circuitry in the postnatal brainstem.

  2. Synaptic consolidation across multiple timescales

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    Lorric Ziegler

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The brain is bombarded with a continuous stream of sensory events, but retains only a small subset in memory. The selectivity of memory formation prevents our memory from being overloaded with irrelevant items that would rapidly bring the brain to its storage limit; moreover, selectivity also prevents overwriting previously formed memories with new ones. Memory formation in the hippocampus, as well as in other brain regions, is thought to be linked to changes in the synaptic connections between neurons. In this view, sensory events imprint traces at the level of synapses that reflect potential memory items. The question of memory selectivity can therefore be reformulated as follows: what are the reasons and conditions that some synaptic traces fade away whereas others are consolidated and persist? Experimentally, changes in synaptic strength induced by 'Hebbian' protocols fade away over a few hours (early long-term potentiation or e-LTP, unless these changes are consolidated. The experiments and conceptual theory of synaptic tagging and capture (STC provide a mechanistic explanation for the processes involved in consolidation. This theory suggests that the initial trace of synaptic plasticity sets a tag at the synapse, which then serves as a marker for potential consolidation of the changes in synaptic efficacy. The actual consolidation processes, transforming e-LTP into late LTP (l-LTP, require the capture of plasticity-related proteins (PRP. We translate the above conceptual model into a compact computational model that accounts for a wealth of in vitro data including experiments on cross-tagging, tag-resetting and depotentiation. A central ingredient is that synaptic traces are described with several variables that evolve on different time scales. Consolidation requires the transmission of information from a 'fast' synaptic trace to a 'slow' one through a 'write' process, including the formation of tags and the production of PRP for the

  3. Enhanced synaptic activity and epileptiform events in the embryonic Kcc2 deficient hippocampus

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    Ilgam eKhalilov

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available The neuronal potassium-chloride co-transporter Kcc2 is thought to play an important role in the post natal excitatory to inhibitory switch of GABA actions in the rodent hippocampus. Here, by studying hippocampi of wild-type (Kcc2+/+ and Kcc2 deficient (Kcc2-/- mouse embryos, we unexpectedly found increased spontaneous neuronal network activity at E18.5, a developmental stage when Kcc2 is thought not to be functional in the hippocampus. Embryonic Kcc2-/- hippocampi have also an augmented synapse density and a higher frequency of spontaneous glutamatergic and GABAergic postsynaptic currents (PSCs than naïve age matched neurons. However, intracellular chloride concentration ([Cl-]i and the reversal potential of GABA-mediated currents (EGABA were similar in embryonic Kcc2+/+ and Kcc2-/- CA3 neurons. In addition, Kcc2 immuno-labelling was cytoplasmic in the majority of neurons suggesting that the molecule is not functional as a plasma membrane chloride co-transporter. Collectively, our results show that already at an embryonic stage, Kcc2 controls the formation of synapses and, when deleted, the hippocampus has a higher density of GABAergic and glutamatergic synapses and generates spontaneous and evoked epileptiform activities. These results may be explained either by a small population of orchestrating neurons in which Kcc2 operates early as a chloride exporter or by transporter independent actions of Kcc2 that are instrumental in synapses formation and networks construction.

  4. Targeting of NF-κB to Dendritic Spines Is Required for Synaptic Signaling and Spine Development.

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    Dresselhaus, Erica C; Boersma, Matthew C H; Meffert, Mollie K

    2018-04-25

    Long-term forms of brain plasticity share a requirement for changes in gene expression induced by neuronal activity. Mechanisms that determine how the distinct and overlapping functions of multiple activity-responsive transcription factors, including nuclear factor κB (NF-κB), give rise to stimulus-appropriate neuronal responses remain unclear. We report that the p65/RelA subunit of NF-κB confers subcellular enrichment at neuronal dendritic spines and engineer a p65 mutant that lacks spine enrichment (p65ΔSE) but retains inherent transcriptional activity equivalent to wild-type p65. Wild-type p65 or p65ΔSE both rescue NF-κB-dependent gene expression in p65-deficient murine hippocampal neurons responding to diffuse (PMA/ionomycin) stimulation. In contrast, neurons lacking spine-enriched NF-κB are selectively impaired in NF-κB-dependent gene expression induced by elevated excitatory synaptic stimulation (bicuculline or glycine). We used the setting of excitatory synaptic activity during development that produces NF-κB-dependent growth of dendritic spines to test physiological function of spine-enriched NF-κB in an activity-dependent response. Expression of wild-type p65, but not p65ΔSE, is capable of rescuing spine density to normal levels in p65-deficient pyramidal neurons. Collectively, these data reveal that spatial localization in dendritic spines contributes unique capacities to the NF-κB transcription factor in synaptic activity-dependent responses. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Extensive research has established a model in which the regulation of neuronal gene expression enables enduring forms of plasticity and learning. However, mechanisms imparting stimulus specificity to gene regulation, ensuring biologically appropriate responses, remain incompletely understood. NF-κB is a potent transcription factor with evolutionarily conserved functions in learning and the growth of excitatory synaptic contacts. Neuronal NF-κB is localized in both synapse and

  5. Short-term repeated corticosterone administration enhances glutamatergic but not GABAergic transmission in the rat motor cortex.

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    Kula, Joanna; Blasiak, Anna; Czerw, Anna; Tylko, Grzegorz; Sowa, Joanna; Hess, Grzegorz

    2016-04-01

    It has been demonstrated that stress impairs performance of skilled reaching and walking tasks in rats due to the action of glucocorticoids involved in the stress response. Skilled reaching and walking are controlled by the primary motor cortex (M1); however, it is not known whether stress-related impairments in skilled motor tasks are related to functional and/or structural alterations within the M1. We studied the effects of single and repeated injections of corticosterone (twice daily for 7 days) on spontaneous excitatory and inhibitory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs and sIPSCs) recorded from layer II/III pyramidal neurons in ex vivo slices of the M1, prepared 2 days after the last administration of the hormone. We also measured the density of dendritic spines on pyramidal cells and the protein levels of selected subunits of AMPA, NMDA, and GABAA receptors after repeated corticosterone administration. Repeatedly administered corticosterone induced an increase in the frequency but not in the amplitude of sEPSCs, while a single administration had no effect on the recorded excitatory currents. The frequency and amplitude of sIPSCs as well as the excitability of pyramidal cells were changed neither after single nor after repeated corticosterone administration. Treatment with corticosterone for 7 days did not modify the density of dendritic spines on pyramidal neurons. Corticosterone influenced neither the protein levels of GluA1, GluA2, GluN1, GluN2A, and GluN2B subunits of glutamate receptors nor those of α1, β2, and γ2 subunits of the GABAA receptor. The increase in sEPSCs frequency induced by repeated corticosterone administration faded out within 7 days. These data indicate that prolonged administration of exogenous corticosterone selectively and reversibly enhances glutamatergic, but not GABAergic transmission in the rat motor cortex. Our results suggest that corticosterone treatment results in an enhancement of spontaneous glutamate release from presynaptic

  6. Astrocyte matricellular proteins that control excitatory synaptogenesis are regulated by inflammatory cytokines and correlate with paralysis severity during experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis

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    Pennelope K. Blakely

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The matricellular proteins, secreted protein acidic and rich in cysteine (SPARC and SPARC-like 1 (SPARCL1, are produced by astrocytes and control excitatory synaptogenesis in the central nervous system. While SPARCL1 directly promotes excitatory synapse formation in vitro and in the developing nervous system in vivo, SPARC specifically antagonizes the synaptogenic actions of SPARCL1. We hypothesized these proteins also help maintain existing excitatory synapses in adult hosts, and that local inflammation in the spinal cord alters their production in a way that dynamically modulates motor synapses and impacts the severity of paralysis during experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE in mice. Using a spontaneously remitting EAE model, paralysis severity correlated inversely with both expression of synaptic proteins and the number of synapses in direct contact with the perikarya of motor neurons in spinal grey matter. In both remitting and non-remitting EAE models, paralysis severity also correlated inversely with sparcl1:sparc transcript and SPARCL1:SPARC protein ratios directly in lumbar spinal cord tissue. In vitro, astrocyte production of both SPARCL1 and SPARC was regulated by T cell-derived cytokines, causing dynamic modulation of the SPARCL1:SPARC expression ratio. Taken together, these data support a model whereby proinflammatory cytokines inhibit SPARCL1 and/or augment SPARC expression by astrocytes in spinal grey matter that, in turn, cause either transient or sustained synaptic retraction from lumbar spinal motor neurons thereby regulating hind limb paralysis during EAE. Ongoing studies seek ways to alter this SPARCL1:SPARC expression ratio in favor of synapse reformation/maintenance and thus help to modulate neurologic deficits during times of inflammation. This could identify new astrocyte-targeted therapies for diseases such as multiple sclerosis.

  7. Ensemble stacking mitigates biases in inference of synaptic connectivity

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    Brendan Chambers

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available A promising alternative to directly measuring the anatomical connections in a neuronal population is inferring the connections from the activity. We employ simulated spiking neuronal networks to compare and contrast commonly used inference methods that identify likely excitatory synaptic connections using statistical regularities in spike timing. We find that simple adjustments to standard algorithms improve inference accuracy: A signing procedure improves the power of unsigned mutual-information-based approaches and a correction that accounts for differences in mean and variance of background timing relationships, such as those expected to be induced by heterogeneous firing rates, increases the sensitivity of frequency-based methods. We also find that different inference methods reveal distinct subsets of the synaptic network and each method exhibits different biases in the accurate detection of reciprocity and local clustering. To correct for errors and biases specific to single inference algorithms, we combine methods into an ensemble. Ensemble predictions, generated as a linear combination of multiple inference algorithms, are more sensitive than the best individual measures alone, and are more faithful to ground-truth statistics of connectivity, mitigating biases specific to single inference methods. These weightings generalize across simulated datasets, emphasizing the potential for the broad utility of ensemble-based approaches. Mapping the routing of spikes through local circuitry is crucial for understanding neocortical computation. Under appropriate experimental conditions, these maps can be used to infer likely patterns of synaptic recruitment, linking activity to underlying anatomical connections. Such inferences help to reveal the synaptic implementation of population dynamics and computation. We compare a number of standard functional measures to infer underlying connectivity. We find that regularization impacts measures

  8. Compensating for Thalamocortical Synaptic Loss in Alzheimer’s Disease

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    Kamal eAbuhassan

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The study presents a thalamocortical network model which oscillates within the alpha frequency band (8-13 Hz as recorded in the wakeful relaxed state with closed eyes to study the neural causes of abnormal oscillatory activity in Alzheimer’s disease (AD. Incorporated within the model are various types of cortical excitatory and inhibitory neurons, recurrently connected to thalamic and reticular thalamic regions with the ratios and distances derived from the mammalian thalamocortical system. The model is utilized to study the impacts of four types of connectivity loss on the model’s spectral dynamics. The study focuses on investigating degeneration of corticocortical, thalamocortical, corticothalamic and corticoreticular couplings, with an emphasis on the influence of each modelled case on the spectral output of the model. Synaptic compensation has been included in each model to examine the interplay between synaptic deletion and compensation mechanisms, and the oscillatory activity of the network. The results of power spectra and event related desynchronisation/synchronisation (ERD/S analyses show that the dynamics of the thalamic and cortical oscillations are significantly influenced by corticocortical synaptic loss. Interestingly, the patterns of changes in thalamic spectral activity are correlated with those in the cortical model. Similarly, the thalamic oscillatory activity is diminished after partial corticothalamic denervation. The results suggest that thalamic atrophy is a secondary pathology to cortical shrinkage in Alzheimer’s disease. In addition, this study finds that the inhibition from neurons in the thalamic reticular nucleus (RTN to thalamic relay (TCR neurons plays a key role in regulating thalamic oscillations; disinhibition disrupts thalamic oscillatory activity even though TCR neurons are more depolarized after being released from RTN inhibition. This study provides information that can be explored experimentally to

  9. Imbalanced pattern completion vs. separation in cognitive disease: network simulations of synaptic pathologies predict a personalized therapeutics strategy

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    Hanson Jesse E

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Diverse Mouse genetic models of neurodevelopmental, neuropsychiatric, and neurodegenerative causes of impaired cognition exhibit at least four convergent points of synaptic malfunction: 1 Strength of long-term potentiation (LTP, 2 Strength of long-term depression (LTD, 3 Relative inhibition levels (Inhibition, and 4 Excitatory connectivity levels (Connectivity. Results To test the hypothesis that pathological increases or decreases in these synaptic properties could underlie imbalances at the level of basic neural network function, we explored each type of malfunction in a simulation of autoassociative memory. These network simulations revealed that one impact of impairments or excesses in each of these synaptic properties is to shift the trade-off between pattern separation and pattern completion performance during memory storage and recall. Each type of synaptic pathology either pushed the network balance towards intolerable error in pattern separation or intolerable error in pattern completion. Imbalances caused by pathological impairments or excesses in LTP, LTD, inhibition, or connectivity, could all be exacerbated, or rescued, by the simultaneous modulation of any of the other three synaptic properties. Conclusions Because appropriate modulation of any of the synaptic properties could help re-balance network function, regardless of the origins of the imbalance, we propose a new strategy of personalized cognitive therapeutics guided by assay of pattern completion vs. pattern separation function. Simulated examples and testable predictions of this theorized approach to cognitive therapeutics are presented.

  10. Synaptic Mechanisms Generating Orientation Selectivity in the ON Pathway of the Rabbit Retina.

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    Venkataramani, Sowmya; Taylor, W Rowland

    2016-03-16

    Neurons that signal the orientation of edges within the visual field have been widely studied in primary visual cortex. Much less is known about the mechanisms of orientation selectivity that arise earlier in the visual stream. Here we examine the synaptic and morphological properties of a subtype of orientation-selective ganglion cell in the rabbit retina. The receptive field has an excitatory ON center, flanked by excitatory OFF regions, a structure similar to simple cell receptive fields in primary visual cortex. Examination of the light-evoked postsynaptic currents in these ON-type orientation-selective ganglion cells (ON-OSGCs) reveals that synaptic input is mediated almost exclusively through the ON pathway. Orientation selectivity is generated by larger excitation for preferred relative to orthogonal stimuli, and conversely larger inhibition for orthogonal relative to preferred stimuli. Excitatory orientation selectivity arises in part from the morphology of the dendritic arbors. Blocking GABAA receptors reduces orientation selectivity of the inhibitory synaptic inputs and the spiking responses. Negative contrast stimuli in the flanking regions produce orientation-selective excitation in part by disinhibition of a tonic NMDA receptor-mediated input arising from ON bipolar cells. Comparison with earlier studies of OFF-type OSGCs indicates that diverse synaptic circuits have evolved in the retina to detect the orientation of edges in the visual input. A core goal for visual neuroscientists is to understand how neural circuits at each stage of the visual system extract and encode features from the visual scene. This study documents a novel type of orientation-selective ganglion cell in the retina and shows that the receptive field structure is remarkably similar to that of simple cells in primary visual cortex. However, the data indicate that, unlike in the cortex, orientation selectivity in the retina depends on the activity of inhibitory interneurons. The

  11. Orientation selectivity of synaptic input to neurons in mouse and cat primary visual cortex.

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    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.

  12. Alterations in Brain Inflammation, Synaptic Proteins, and Adult Hippocampal Neurogenesis during Epileptogenesis in Mice Lacking Synapsin2.

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    Deepti Chugh

    Full Text Available Synapsins are pre-synaptic vesicle-associated proteins linked to the pathogenesis of epilepsy through genetic association studies in humans. Deletion of synapsins causes an excitatory/inhibitory imbalance, exemplified by the epileptic phenotype of synapsin knockout mice. These mice develop handling-induced tonic-clonic seizures starting at the age of about 3 months. Hence, they provide an opportunity to study epileptogenic alterations in a temporally controlled manner. Here, we evaluated brain inflammation, synaptic protein expression, and adult hippocampal neurogenesis in the epileptogenic (1 and 2 months of age and tonic-clonic (3.5-4 months phase of synapsin 2 knockout mice using immunohistochemical and biochemical assays. In the epileptogenic phase, region-specific microglial activation was evident, accompanied by an increase in the chemokine receptor CX3CR1, interleukin-6, and tumor necrosis factor-α, and a decrease in chemokine keratinocyte chemoattractant/ growth-related oncogene. Both post-synaptic density-95 and gephyrin, scaffolding proteins at excitatory and inhibitory synapses, respectively, showed a significant up-regulation primarily in the cortex. Furthermore, we observed an increase in the inhibitory adhesion molecules neuroligin-2 and neurofascin and potassium chloride co-transporter KCC2. Decreased expression of γ-aminobutyric acid receptor-δ subunit and cholecystokinin was also evident. Surprisingly, hippocampal neurogenesis was reduced in the epileptogenic phase. Taken together, we report molecular alterations in brain inflammation and excitatory/inhibitory balance that could serve as potential targets for therapeutics and diagnostic biomarkers. In addition, the regional differences in brain inflammation and synaptic protein expression indicate an epileptogenic zone from where the generalized seizures in synapsin 2 knockout mice may be initiated or spread.

  13. Modulation of NMDA Receptor Properties and Synaptic Transmission by the NR3A Subunit in Mouse Hippocampal and Cerebrocortical Neurons

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    Tong, Gary; Takahashi, Hiroto; Tu, Shichun; Shin, Yeonsook; Talantova, Maria; Zago, Wagner; Xia, Peng; Nie, Zhiguo; Goetz, Thomas; Zhang, Dongxian; Lipton, Stuart A.; Nakanishi, Nobuki

    2015-01-01

    Expression of the NR3A subunit with NR1/NR2 in Xenopus oocytes or mammalian cell lines leads to a reduction in N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA)-induced currents and decreased Mg2+ sensitivity and Ca2+ permeability compared with NR1/NR2 receptors. Consistent with these findings, neurons from NR3A knockout (KO) mice exhibit enhanced NMDA-induced currents. Recombinant NR3A can also form excitatory glycine receptors with NR1 in the absence of NR2. However, the effects of NR3A on channel properties in neurons and synaptic transmission have not been fully elucidated. To study physiological roles of NR3A subunits, we generated NR3A transgenic (Tg) mice. Cultured NR3A Tg neurons exhibited two populations of NMDA receptor (NMDAR) channels, reduced Mg2+ sensitivity, and decreased Ca2+ permeability in response to NMDA/glycine, but glycine alone did not elicit excitatory currents. In addition, NMDAR-mediated excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) in NR3A Tg hippocampal slices showed reduced Mg2+ sensitivity, consistent with the notion that NR3A subunits incorporated into synaptic NMDARs. To study the function of endogenous NR3A subunits, we compared NMDAR-mediated EPSCs in NR3A KO and WT control mice. In NR3A KO mice, the ratio of the amplitudes of the NMDAR-mediated component to α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isox-azolepropionic acid receptor-mediated component of the EPSC was significantly larger than that seen in WT littermates. This result suggests that NR3A subunits contributed to the NMDAR-mediated component of the EPSC in WT mice. Taken together, these results show that NR3A subunits contribute to NMDAR responses from both synaptic and extra-synaptic receptors, likely composed of NR1, NR2, and NR3 subunits. PMID:18003876

  14. Synaptic Effects of Electric Fields

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    Rahman, Asif

    Learning and sensory processing in the brain relies on the effective transmission of information across synapses. The strength and efficacy of synaptic transmission is modifiable through training and can be modulated with noninvasive electrical brain stimulation. Transcranial electrical stimulation (TES), specifically, induces weak intensity and spatially diffuse electric fields in the brain. Despite being weak, electric fields modulate spiking probability and the efficacy of synaptic transmission. These effects critically depend on the direction of the electric field relative to the orientation of the neuron and on the level of endogenous synaptic activity. TES has been used to modulate a wide range of neuropsychiatric indications, for various rehabilitation applications, and cognitive performance in diverse tasks. How can a weak and diffuse electric field, which simultaneously polarizes neurons across the brain, have precise changes in brain function? Designing therapies to maximize desired outcomes and minimize undesired effects presents a challenging problem. A series of experiments and computational models are used to define the anatomical and functional factors leading to specificity of TES. Anatomical specificity derives from guiding current to targeted brain structures and taking advantage of the direction-sensitivity of neurons with respect to the electric field. Functional specificity originates from preferential modulation of neuronal networks that are already active. Diffuse electric fields may recruit connected brain networks involved in a training task and promote plasticity along active synaptic pathways. In vitro, electric fields boost endogenous synaptic plasticity and raise the ceiling for synaptic learning with repeated stimulation sessions. Synapses undergoing strong plasticity are preferentially modulated over weak synapses. Therefore, active circuits that are involved in a task could be more susceptible to stimulation than inactive circuits

  15. TrkB and PKMζ regulate synaptic localization of PSD-95 in developing cortex

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    Yoshii, Akira; Murata, Yasunobu; Kim, Jihye; Zhang, Chao; Shokat, Kevan M.; Constantine-Paton, Martha

    2011-01-01

    Post-synaptic density 95 (PSD-95), the major scaffold at excitatory synapses, is critical for synapse maturation and learning. In rodents, eye opening, the onset of pattern vision, triggers a rapid movement of PSD-95 from visual neuron somata to synapses. We previously showed that the PI3 kinase-Akt pathway downstream of BDNF/TrkB signaling stimulates synaptic delivery of PSD-95 via vesicular transport. However, vesicular transport requires PSD-95 palmitoylation to attach it to a lipid membrane. Also PSD-95 insertion at synapses is known to require this lipid modification. Here, we show that BDNF/TrkB signaling is also necessary for PSD-95 palmitoylation and its transport to synapses in mouse visual cortical layer 2/3 neurons. However, palmitoylation of PSD-95 requires the activation of another pathway downstream of BDNF/TrkB, namely signaling through PLCγ and the brain-specific PKC variant PKMζ. We find that PKMζ selectively regulates phosphorylation of the palmitoylation enzyme ZDHHC8. Inhibition of PKMζ results in a reduction of synaptic PSD-95 accumulation in vivo, which can be rescued by over-expression ZDHHC8. Therefore, TrkB and PKMζ, two critical regulators of synaptic plasticity, facilitate PSD-95 targeting to synapses. These results also indicate that palmitoylation can be regulated by a trophic factor. Our findings have implications for neurodevelopmental disorders as well as ageing brains. PMID:21849550

  16. Hippocampal testosterone relates to reference memory performance and synaptic plasticity in male rats

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    Kristina eSchulz

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Steroids are important neuromodulators influencing cognitive performance and synaptic plasticity. While the majority of literature concerns adrenal- and gonadectomized animals, very little is known about the natural endogenous release of hormones during learning. Therefore, we measured blood and brain (hippocampus, prefrontal cortex testosterone, estradiol, and corticosterone concentrations of intact male rats undergoing a spatial learning paradigm which is known to reinforce hippocampal plasticity. We found significant modulations of all investigated hormones over the training course. Corticosterone and testosterone were correlated manifold with behaviour, while estradiol expressed fewer correlations. In the recall session, testosterone was tightly coupled to reference memory performance, which is crucial for reinforcement of synaptic plasticity in the dentate gyrus. Intriguingly, prefrontal cortex and hippocampal levels related differentially to reference memory performance. Correlations of testosterone and corticosterone switched from unspecific activity to specific cognitive functions over training. Correspondingly, exogenous application of testosterone revealed different effects on synaptic and neuronal plasticity in trained versus untrained animals. While hippocampal long-term potentiation (LTP of the field excitatory postsynaptic potential (fEPSP was prolonged in untrained rats, both the fEPSP- and the population spike amplitude-LTP was impaired in trained rats. Behavioural performance was unaffected, but correlations of hippocampal field potentials with behaviour were decoupled in treated rats. The data provide important evidence that besides adrenal, also gonadal steroids play a mechanistic role in linking synaptic plasticity to cognitive performance.

  17. A computational study of astrocytic glutamate influence on post-synaptic neuronal excitability.

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    Bronac Flanagan

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The ability of astrocytes to rapidly clear synaptic glutamate and purposefully release the excitatory transmitter is critical in the functioning of synapses and neuronal circuits. Dysfunctions of these homeostatic functions have been implicated in the pathology of brain disorders such as mesial temporal lobe epilepsy. However, the reasons for these dysfunctions are not clear from experimental data and computational models have been developed to provide further understanding of the implications of glutamate clearance from the extracellular space, as a result of EAAT2 downregulation: although they only partially account for the glutamate clearance process. In this work, we develop an explicit model of the astrocytic glutamate transporters, providing a more complete description of the glutamate chemical potential across the astrocytic membrane and its contribution to glutamate transporter driving force based on thermodynamic principles and experimental data. Analysis of our model demonstrates that increased astrocytic glutamate content due to glutamine synthetase downregulation also results in increased postsynaptic quantal size due to gliotransmission. Moreover, the proposed model demonstrates that increased astrocytic glutamate could prolong the time course of glutamate in the synaptic cleft and enhances astrocyte-induced slow inward currents, causing a disruption to the clarity of synaptic signalling and the occurrence of intervals of higher frequency postsynaptic firing. Overall, our work distilled the necessity of a low astrocytic glutamate concentration for reliable synaptic transmission of information and the possible implications of enhanced glutamate levels as in epilepsy.

  18. Synaptic conductances during interictal discharges in pyramidal neurons of rat entorhinal cortex

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    Dmitry V. Amakhin

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available In epilepsy, the balance of excitation and inhibition underlying the basis of neural network activity shifts, resulting in neuronal network hyperexcitability and recurrent seizure-associated discharges. Mechanisms involved in ictal and interictal events are not fully understood, in particular, because of controversial data regarding the dynamics of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic conductances. In the present study, we estimated AMPAR-, NMDAR-, and GABAAR-mediated conductances during two distinct types of interictal discharge (IID in pyramidal neurons of rat entorhinal cortex in cortico-hippocampal slices. Repetitively emerging seizure-like events and IIDs were recorded in high extracellular potassium, 4-aminopyridine, and reduced magnesium-containing solution. An original procedure for estimating synaptic conductance during IIDs was based on the differences among the current-voltage characteristics of the synaptic components. The synaptic conductance dynamics obtained revealed that the first type of IID is determined by activity of GABAAR channels with depolarized reversal potential. The second type of IID is determined by the interplay between excitation and inhibition, with prominent early AMPAR and prolonged depolarized GABAAR and NMDAR-mediated components. The study then validated the contribution of these components to IIDs by intracellular pharmacological isolation. These data provide new insights into the mechanisms of seizures generation, development, and cessation.

  19. HDAC2 expression in parvalbumin interneurons regulates synaptic plasticity in the mouse visual cortex

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    Alexi Nott

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available An experience-dependent postnatal increase in GABAergic inhibition in the visual cortex is important for the closure of a critical period of enhanced synaptic plasticity. Although maturation of the subclass of parvalbumin (Pv–expressing GABAergic interneurons is known to contribute to critical period closure, the role of epigenetics on cortical inhibition and synaptic plasticity has not been explored. The transcription regulator, histone deacetylase 2 (HDAC2, has been shown to modulate synaptic plasticity and learning processes in hippocampal excitatory neurons. We found that genetic deletion of HDAC2 specifically from Pv interneurons reduces inhibitory input in the visual cortex of adult mice and coincides with enhanced long-term depression that is more typical of young mice. These findings show that HDAC2 loss in Pv interneurons leads to a delayed closure of the critical period in the visual cortex and supports the hypothesis that HDAC2 is a key negative regulator of synaptic plasticity in the adult brain.

  20. HDAC2 expression in parvalbumin interneurons regulates synaptic plasticity in the mouse visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nott, Alexi; Cho, Sukhee; Seo, Jinsoo; Tsai, Li-Huei

    2015-01-01

    An experience-dependent postnatal increase in GABAergic inhibition in the visual cortex is important for the closure of a critical period of enhanced synaptic plasticity. Although maturation of the subclass of Parvalbumin (Pv)-expressing GABAergic interneurons is known to contribute to critical period closure, the role of epigenetics on cortical inhibition and synaptic plasticity has not been explored. The transcription regulator, histone deacetylase 2 (HDAC2), has been shown to modulate synaptic plasticity and learning processes in hippocampal excitatory neurons. We found that genetic deletion of HDAC2 specifically from Pv-interneurons reduces inhibitory input in the visual cortex of adult mice, and coincides with enhanced long-term depression (LTD) that is more typical of young mice. These findings show that HDAC2 loss in Pv-interneurons leads to a delayed closure of the critical period in the visual cortex and supports the hypothesis that HDAC2 is a key negative regulator of synaptic plasticity in the adult brain.

  1. Synaptic Conversion of Chloride-Dependent Synapses in Spinal Nociceptive Circuits: Roles in Neuropathic Pain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark S. Cooper

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Electrophysiological conversion of chloride-dependent synapses from inhibitory to excitatory function, as a result of aberrant neuronal chloride homeostasis, is a known mechanism for the genesis of neuropathic pain. This paper examines theoretically how this type of synaptic conversion can disrupt circuit logic in spinal nociceptive circuits. First, a mathematical scaling factor is developed to represent local aberration in chloride electrochemical driving potential. Using this mathematical scaling factor, electrophysiological symbols are developed to represent the magnitude of synaptic conversion within nociceptive circuits. When inserted into a nociceptive circuit diagram, these symbols assist in understanding the generation of neuropathic pain associated with the collapse of transmembrane chloride gradients. A more generalized scaling factor is also derived to represent the interplay of chloride and bicarbonate driving potentials on the function of GABAergic and glycinergic synapses. These mathematical and symbolic representations of synaptic conversion help illustrate the critical role that anion driving potentials play in the transduction of pain. Using these representations, we discuss ramifications of glial-mediated synaptic conversion in the genesis, and treatment, of neuropathic pain.

  2. Valine but not leucine or isoleucine supports neurotransmitter glutamate synthesis during synaptic activity in cultured cerebellar neurons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bak, Lasse Kristoffer; Johansen, Maja L.; Schousboe, Arne

    2012-01-01

    Synthesis of neuronal glutamate from a-ketoglutarate for neurotransmission necessitates an amino group nitrogen donor; however, it is not clear which amino acid(s) serves this role. Thus, the ability of the three branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs), leucine, isoleucine, and valine, to act as amino...... group nitrogen donors for synthesis of vesicular neurotransmitter glutamate was investigated in cultured mouse cerebellar (primarily glutamatergic) neurons. The cultures were superfused in the presence of (15) N-labeled BCAAs, and synaptic activity was induced by pulses of N-methyl-D-aspartate (300 µ......]valine was able to maintain the amount of vesicular glutamate during synaptic activity. This indicates that, among the BCAAs, only valine supports the increased need for synthesis of vesicular glutamate. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc....

  3. Biphasic synaptic Ca influx arising from compartmentalized electrical signals in dendritic spines.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brenda L Bloodgood

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Excitatory synapses on mammalian principal neurons are typically formed onto dendritic spines, which consist of a bulbous head separated from the parent dendrite by a thin neck. Although activation of voltage-gated channels in the spine and stimulus-evoked constriction of the spine neck can influence synaptic signals, the contribution of electrical filtering by the spine neck to basal synaptic transmission is largely unknown. Here we use spine and dendrite calcium (Ca imaging combined with 2-photon laser photolysis of caged glutamate to assess the impact of electrical filtering imposed by the spine morphology on synaptic Ca transients. We find that in apical spines of CA1 hippocampal neurons, the spine neck creates a barrier to the propagation of current, which causes a voltage drop and results in spatially inhomogeneous activation of voltage-gated Ca channels (VGCCs on a micron length scale. Furthermore, AMPA and NMDA-type glutamate receptors (AMPARs and NMDARs, respectively that are colocalized on individual spine heads interact to produce two kinetically and mechanistically distinct phases of synaptically evoked Ca influx. Rapid depolarization of the spine triggers a brief and large Ca current whose amplitude is regulated in a graded manner by the number of open AMPARs and whose duration is terminated by the opening of small conductance Ca-activated potassium (SK channels. A slower phase of Ca influx is independent of AMPAR opening and is determined by the number of open NMDARs and the post-stimulus potential in the spine. Biphasic synaptic Ca influx only occurs when AMPARs and NMDARs are coactive within an individual spine. These results demonstrate that the morphology of dendritic spines endows associated synapses with specialized modes of signaling and permits the graded and independent control of multiple phases of synaptic Ca influx.

  4. α-Synuclein expression in the mouse cerebellum is restricted to VGluT1 excitatory terminals and is enriched in unipolar brush cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Sun Kyong; Sillitoe, Roy V; Silva, Coralie; Martina, Marco; Sekerkova, Gabriella

    2015-10-01

    α-Synuclein has a crucial role in synaptic vesicle release and synaptic membrane recycling. Although its general expression pattern has been described in the cerebellum, the precise cerebellar structures where α-synuclein is localized are poorly understood. To address this question, we used α-synuclein immunohistochemistry in adult mice cerebellar sections. We found that α-synuclein labels glutamatergic but not glycinergic and GABAergic synaptic terminals in the molecular and granule cell layers. α-Synuclein was preferentially expressed in parallel and mossy fiber synaptic terminals that also express vesicular glutamate transporter 1 (VGluT1), while it was not detected in VGluT2-positive climbing fibers. α-Synuclein was particularly enriched in lobules IX and X, a region known to contain a high density of unipolar brush cells (UBCs). To elucidate whether the α-synuclein-positive mossy fibers belong to UBCs, we double-labeled cerebellar sections with antibodies to α-synuclein and UBC-type-specific markers (calretinin for type I and metabotropic glutamate receptor 1α (mGluR1α) for type II UBCs) and took advantage of organotypic cerebellar cultures (in which all mossy fibers are UBC axons) and moonwalker mice (in which almost all UBCs are ablated) and found that both type I and type II UBCs express α-synuclein. In moonwalker mutant cerebella, the α-synuclein/VGluT1 immunolabeling showed a dramatic decrease in the vestibulocerebellum that correlated with the absence of UBC. α-Synuclein appears to be an excellent marker for intrinsic mossy fibers of the VGluT1 subset in conjunction with UBCs of both subtypes.

  5. Electrical Stimulation of Low-Threshold Proprioceptive Fibers in the Adult Rat Increases Density of Glutamatergic and Cholinergic Terminals on Ankle Extensor α-Motoneurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olga Gajewska-Woźniak

    Full Text Available The effects of stimulation of low-threshold proprioceptive afferents in the tibial nerve on two types of excitatory inputs to α-motoneurons were tested. The first input is formed by glutamatergic Ia sensory afferents contacting monosynaptically α-motoneurons. The second one is the cholinergic input originating from V0c-interneurons, located in lamina X of the spinal cord, modulating activity of α-motoneurons via C-terminals. Our aim was to clarify whether enhancement of signaling to ankle extensor α-motoneurons, via direct electrical stimulation addressed predominantly to low-threshold proprioceptive fibers in the tibial nerve of awake rats, will affect Ia glutamatergic and cholinergic innervation of α-motoneurons of lateral gastrocnemius (LG. LG motoneurons were identified with True Blue tracer injected intramuscularly. Tibial nerve was stimulated for 7 days with continuous bursts of three pulses applied in four 20 min sessions daily. The Hoffmann reflex and motor responses recorded from the soleus muscle, LG synergist, allowed controlling stimulation. Ia terminals and C-terminals abutting on LG-labeled α-motoneurons were detected by immunofluorescence (IF using input-specific anti- VGLUT1 and anti-VAChT antibodies, respectively. Quantitative analysis of confocal images revealed that the number of VGLUT1 IF and VAChT IF terminals contacting the soma of LG α-motoneurons increased after stimulation by 35% and by 26%, respectively, comparing to the sham-stimulated side. The aggregate volume of VGLUT1 IF and VAChT IF terminals increased by 35% and by 30%, respectively. Labeling intensity of boutons was also increased, suggesting an increase of signaling to LG α-motoneurons after stimulation. To conclude, one week of continuous burst stimulation of proprioceptive input to LG α-motoneurons is effective in enrichment of their direct glutamatergic but also indirect cholinergic inputs. The effectiveness of such and longer stimulation in models

  6. Bidirectional Signaling of Neuregulin-2 Mediates Formation of GABAergic Synapses and Maturation of Glutamatergic Synapses in Newborn Granule Cells of Postnatal Hippocampus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Kyu-Hee; Lee, Hyunsu; Yang, Che Ho; Ko, Jeong-Soon; Park, Chang-Hwan; Woo, Ran-Sook; Kim, Joo Yeon; Sun, Woong; Kim, Joung-Hun; Ho, Won-Kyung; Lee, Suk-Ho

    2015-12-16

    Expression of neuregulin-2 (NRG2) is intense in a few regions of the adult brain where neurogenesis persists; however, little is understood about its role in developments of newborn neurons. To study the role of NRG2 in synaptogenesis at different developmental stages, newborn granule cells in rat hippocampal slice cultures were labeled with retrovirus encoding tetracycline-inducible microRNA targeting NRG2 and treated with doxycycline (Dox) at the fourth or seventh postinfection day (dpi). The developmental increase of GABAergic postsynaptic currents (GPSCs) was suppressed by the early Dox treatment (4 dpi), but not by late treatment (7 dpi). The late Dox treatment was used to study the effect of NRG2 depletion specific to excitatory synaptogenesis. The Dox effect on EPSCs emerged 4 d after the impairment in dendritic outgrowth became evident (10 dpi). Notably, Dox treatment abolished the developmental increases of AMPA-receptor mediated EPSCs and the AMPA/NMDA ratio, indicating impaired maturation of glutamatergic synapses. In contrast to GPSCs, Dox effects on EPSCs and dendritic growth were independent of ErbB4 and rescued by concurrent overexpression of NRG2 intracellular domain. These results suggest that forward signaling of NRG2 mediates GABAergic synaptogenesis and its reverse signaling contributes to dendritic outgrowth and maturation of glutamatergic synapses. The hippocampal dentate gyrus is one of special brain regions where neurogenesis persists throughout adulthood. Synaptogenesis is a critical step for newborn neurons to be integrated into preexisting neural network. Because neuregulin-2 (NRG2), a growth factor, is intensely expressed in these regions, we investigated whether it plays a role in synaptogenesis and dendritic growth. We found that NRG2 has dual roles in the development of newborn neurons. For GABAergic synaptogenesis, the extracellular domain of NRG2 acts as a ligand for a receptor on GABAergic neurons. In contrast, its intracellular

  7. Neurotrophin-3 Enhances the Synaptic Organizing Function of TrkC-Protein Tyrosine Phosphatase σ in Rat Hippocampal Neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ammendrup-Johnsen, Ina; Naito, Yusuke; Craig, Ann Marie; Takahashi, Hideto

    2015-09-09

    Neurotrophin-3 (NT-3) and its high-affinity receptor TrkC play crucial trophic roles in neuronal differentiation, axon outgrowth, and synapse development and plasticity in the nervous system. We demonstrated previously that postsynaptic TrkC functions as a glutamatergic synapse-inducing (synaptogenic) cell adhesion molecule trans-interacting with presynaptic protein tyrosine phosphatase σ (PTPσ). Given that NT-3 and PTPσ bind distinct domains of the TrkC extracellular region, here we tested the hypothesis that NT-3 modulates TrkC/PTPσ binding and synaptogenic activity. NT-3 enhanced PTPσ binding to cell surface-expressed TrkC and facilitated the presynapse-inducing activity of TrkC in rat hippocampal neurons. Imaging of recycling presynaptic vesicles combined with TrkC knockdown and rescue approaches demonstrated that NT-3 rapidly potentiates presynaptic function via binding endogenous postsynaptic TrkC in a tyrosine kinase-independent manner. Thus, NT-3 positively modulates the TrkC-PTPσ complex for glutamatergic presynaptic assembly and function independently from TrkC kinase activation. Our findings provide new insight into synaptic roles of neurotrophin signaling and mechanisms controlling synaptic organizing complexes. Significance statement: Although many synaptogenic adhesion complexes have been identified in recent years, little is known about modulatory mechanisms. Here, we demonstrate a novel role of neurotrophin-3 in synaptic assembly and function as a positive modulator of the TrkC-protein tyrosine phosphatase σ complex. This study provides new insight into the involvement of neurotrophin signaling in synapse development and plasticity, presenting a molecular mechanism that may underlie previous observations of short- and long-term enhancement of presynaptic function by neurotrophin. Given the links of synaptogenic adhesion molecules to autism and schizophrenia, this study might also contribute to a better understanding of the pathogenesis of

  8. Inferior Olive HCN1 Channels Coordinate Synaptic Integration and Complex Spike Timing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Derek L.F. Garden

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Cerebellar climbing-fiber-mediated complex spikes originate from neurons in the inferior olive (IO, are critical for motor coordination, and are central to theories of cerebellar learning. Hyperpolarization-activated cyclic-nucleotide-gated (HCN channels expressed by IO neurons have been considered as pacemaker currents important for oscillatory and resonant dynamics. Here, we demonstrate that in vitro, network actions of HCN1 channels enable bidirectional glutamatergic synaptic responses, while local actions of HCN1 channels determine the timing and waveform of synaptically driven action potentials. These roles are distinct from, and may complement, proposed pacemaker functions of HCN channels. We find that in behaving animals HCN1 channels reduce variability in the timing of cerebellar complex spikes, which serve as a readout of IO spiking. Our results suggest that spatially distributed actions of HCN1 channels enable the IO to implement network-wide rules for synaptic integration that modulate the timing of cerebellar climbing fiber signals.

  9. Molecular constraints on synaptic tagging and maintenance of long-term potentiation: a predictive model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul Smolen

    Full Text Available Protein synthesis-dependent, late long-term potentiation (LTP and depression (LTD at glutamatergic hippocampal synapses are well characterized examples of long-term synaptic plasticity. Persistent increased activity of protein kinase M ζ (PKMζ is thought essential for maintaining LTP. Additional spatial and temporal features that govern LTP and LTD induction are embodied in the synaptic tagging and capture (STC and cross capture hypotheses. Only synapses that have been "tagged" by a stimulus sufficient for LTP and learning can "capture" PKMζ. A model was developed to simulate the dynamics of key molecules required for LTP and LTD. The model concisely represents relationships between tagging, capture, LTD, and LTP maintenance. The model successfully simulated LTP maintained by persistent synaptic PKMζ, STC, LTD, and cross capture, and makes testable predictions concerning the dynamics of PKMζ. The maintenance of LTP, and consequently of at least some forms of long-term memory, is predicted to require continual positive feedback in which PKMζ enhances its own synthesis only at potentiated synapses. This feedback underlies bistability in the activity of PKMζ. Second, cross capture requires the induction of LTD to induce dendritic PKMζ synthesis, although this may require tagging of a nearby synapse for LTP. The model also simulates the effects of PKMζ inhibition, and makes additional predictions for the dynamics of CaM kinases. Experiments testing the above predictions would significantly advance the understanding of memory maintenance.

  10. Molecular constraints on synaptic tagging and maintenance of long-term potentiation: a predictive model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smolen, Paul; Baxter, Douglas A; Byrne, John H

    2012-01-01

    Protein synthesis-dependent, late long-term potentiation (LTP) and depression (LTD) at glutamatergic hippocampal synapses are well characterized examples of long-term synaptic plasticity. Persistent increased activity of protein kinase M ζ (PKMζ) is thought essential for maintaining LTP. Additional spatial and temporal features that govern LTP and LTD induction are embodied in the synaptic tagging and capture (STC) and cross capture hypotheses. Only synapses that have been "tagged" by a stimulus sufficient for LTP and learning can "capture" PKMζ. A model was developed to simulate the dynamics of key molecules required for LTP and LTD. The model concisely represents relationships between tagging, capture, LTD, and LTP maintenance. The model successfully simulated LTP maintained by persistent synaptic PKMζ, STC, LTD, and cross capture, and makes testable predictions concerning the dynamics of PKMζ. The maintenance of LTP, and consequently of at least some forms of long-term memory, is predicted to require continual positive feedback in which PKMζ enhances its own synthesis only at potentiated synapses. This feedback underlies bistability in the activity of PKMζ. Second, cross capture requires the induction of LTD to induce dendritic PKMζ synthesis, although this may require tagging of a nearby synapse for LTP. The model also simulates the effects of PKMζ inhibition, and makes additional predictions for the dynamics of CaM kinases. Experiments testing the above predictions would significantly advance the understanding of memory maintenance.

  11. The role of cAMP in synaptic homeostasis in response to environmental temperature challenges and hyperexcitability mutations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Atsushi eUeda

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Homeostasis is the ability of physiological systems to regain functional balance following environment or experimental insults and synaptic homeostasis has been demonstrated in various species following genetic or pharmacological disruptions. Among environmental challenges, homeostatic responses to temperature extremes are critical to animal survival under natural conditions. We previously reported that axon terminal arborization in Drosophila larval neuromuscular junctions is enhanced at elevated temperatures; however, the amplitude of excitatory junctional potentials (EJPs remains unaltered despite the increase in synaptic bouton numbers. Here we determine the cellular basis of this homeostatic adjustment in larvae reared at high temperature (HT, 29 ˚C. We found that synaptic current focally recorded from individual synaptic boutons was unaffected by rearing temperature (30 ˚C. However, HT rearing decreased the quantal size (amplitude of spontaneous miniature EJPs, or mEJPs, which compensates for the increased number of synaptic releasing sites to retain a normal EJP size. The quantal size decrease is accounted for by a decrease in input resistance of the postsynaptic muscle fiber, indicating an increase in membrane area that matches the synaptic growth at HT. Interestingly, a mutation in rutabaga (rut encoding adenylyl cyclase (AC exhibited no obvious changes in quantal size or input resistance of postsynaptic muscle cells after HT rearing, suggesting an important role for rut AC in temperature-induced synaptic homeostasis in Drosophila. This extends our previous finding of rut-dependent synaptic homeostasis in hyperexcitable mutants, e.g. slowpoke (slo. In slo larvae, the lack of BK channel function is partially ameliorated by upregulation of presynaptic Sh IA current to limit excessive transmitter release in addition to postsynaptic glutamate receptor recomposition that reduces the quantal size.

  12. Mechanisms and functional roles of glutamatergic synapse diversity in a cerebellar circuit

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zampini, Valeria; Liu, Jian K; Diana, Marco A; Maldonado, Paloma P; Brunel, Nicolas; Dieudonné, Stéphane

    2016-01-01

    Synaptic currents display a large degree of heterogeneity of their temporal characteristics, but the functional role of such heterogeneities remains unknown. We investigated in rat cerebellar slices synaptic currents in Unipolar Brush Cells (UBCs), which generate intrinsic mossy fibers relaying

  13. A perisynaptic ménage à trois between Dlg, DLin-7, and Metro controls proper organization of Drosophila synaptic junctions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bachmann, André; Kobler, Oliver; Kittel, Robert J; Wichmann, Carolin; Sierralta, Jimena; Sigrist, Stephan J; Gundelfinger, Eckart D; Knust, Elisabeth; Thomas, Ulrich

    2010-04-28

    Structural plasticity of synaptic junctions is a prerequisite to achieve and modulate connectivity within nervous systems, e.g., during learning and memory formation. It demands adequate backup systems that allow remodeling while retaining sufficient stability to prevent unwanted synaptic disintegration. The strength of submembranous scaffold complexes, which are fundamental to the architecture of synaptic junctions, likely constitutes a crucial determinant of synaptic stability. Postsynaptic density protein-95 (PSD-95)/ Discs-large (Dlg)-like membrane-associated guanylate kinases (DLG-MAGUKs) are principal scaffold proteins at both vertebrate and invertebrate synapses. At Drosophila larval glutamatergic neuromuscular junctions (NMJs) DlgA and DlgS97 exert pleiotropic functions, probably reflecting a few known and a number of yet-unknown binding partners. In this study we have identified Metro, a novel p55/MPP-like Drosophila MAGUK as a major binding partner of perisynaptic DlgS97 at larval NMJs. Based on homotypic LIN-2,-7 (L27) domain interactions, Metro stabilizes junctional DlgS97 in a complex with the highly conserved adaptor protein DLin-7. In a remarkably interdependent manner, Metro and DLin-7 act downstream of DlgS97 to control NMJ expansion and proper establishment of synaptic boutons. Using quantitative 3D-imaging we further demonstrate that the complex controls the size of postsynaptic glutamate receptor fields. Our findings accentuate the importance of perisynaptic scaffold complexes for synaptic stabilization and organization.

  14. Glutamatergic transmission in drug reward: implications for drug addiction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Souza, Manoranjan S

    2015-01-01

    Individuals addicted to drugs of abuse such as alcohol, nicotine, cocaine, and heroin are a significant burden on healthcare systems all over the world. The positive reinforcing (rewarding) effects of the above mentioned drugs play a major role in the initiation and maintenance of the drug-taking habit. Thus, understanding the neurochemical mechanisms underlying the reinforcing effects of drugs of abuse is critical to reducing the burden of drug addiction in society. Over the last two decades, there has been an increasing focus on the role of the excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate in drug addiction. In this review, pharmacological and genetic evidence supporting the role of glutamate in mediating the rewarding effects of the above described drugs of abuse will be discussed. Further, the review will discuss the role of glutamate transmission in two complex heterogeneous brain regions, namely the nucleus accumbens (NAcc) and the ventral tegmental area (VTA), which mediate the rewarding effects of drugs of abuse. In addition, several medications approved by the Food and Drug Administration that act by blocking glutamate transmission will be discussed in the context of drug reward. Finally, this review will discuss future studies needed to address currently unanswered gaps in knowledge, which will further elucidate the role of glutamate in the rewarding effects of drugs of abuse.

  15. Glutamatergic transmission in drug reward: Implications for drug addiction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manoranjan S Dsouza

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Individuals addicted to drugs of abuse such as alcohol, nicotine, cocaine, and heroin are a significant burden on healthcare systems all over the world. The positive reinforcing (rewarding effects of the above mentioned drugs play a major role in the initiation and maintenance of the drug-taking habit. Thus, understanding the neurochemical mechanisms underlying the reinforcing effects of drugs of abuse is critical to reducing the burden of drug addiction in society. Over the last two decades, there has been an increasing focus on the role of the excitatory neurotransmitter glutamate in drug addiction. In this review, pharmacological and genetic evidence supporting the role of glutamate in mediating the rewarding effects of the above described drugs of abuse will be discussed. Further, the review will discuss the role of glutamate transmission in two complex heterogeneous brain regions, namely the nucleus accumbens (NAcc and the ventral tegmental area (VTA, which mediate the rewarding effects of drugs of abuse. In addition, several medications approved by the Food and Drug Administration that act by blocking glutamate transmission will be discussed in the context of drug reward. Finally, this review will discuss future studies needed to address currently unanswered gaps in knowledge, which will further elucidate the role of glutamate in the rewarding effects of drugs of abuse.

  16. Pharmacology of morphine and morphine-3-glucuronide at opioid, excitatory amino acid, GABA and glycine binding sites

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bartlett, S.E.; Smith, M.T. (Department of Pharmacy, The University of Queensland (Australia)); Dood, P.R. (Clinical Research Centre, Royal Brisbane Hospital Foundation, Brisbane (Australia))

    1994-07-01

    Morphine in high doses and its major metabolite, morphine-3-glucuronide, cause CNS excitation following intrathecal and intracerebroventricular administration by an unknown mechanism. This study investigated whether morphine and morphine-3-glucuronide interact at major excitatory (glutamate), major inhibitory (GABA or glycine), or opioid binding sites. Homogenate binding assays were performed using specific radioligands. At opioid receptors, morphine-3-glucuronide and morphine caused an equipotent sodium shift, consistent with morphine-3-glucuronide behaving as an agonist. This suggests that morphine-3-glucuronide-mediated excitation is not caused by an interaction at opioid receptors. Morphine-3-glucuronide and morphine caused a weak inhibition of the binding of [sup 3]H-MK801 (non-competitive antagonist) and [sup 125]I-ifenprodil (polyamine site antagonist), but at unphysiologically high concentrations. This suggests that CNS excitation would not result from an interaction of morphine-3-glucuronide and high-dose morphine with these sites on the NMDA receptor. Morphine-3-glucuronide and morphine inhibited the binding of [sup 3]H-muscimol (GABA receptor agonist), [sup 3]H-diazepam and [sup 3]H-flunitraxepam (benzodiazepine agonists) binding very weakly, suggesting the excitatory effects of morphine-3-glucuronide and high-dose morphine are not elicited through GABA[sub A] receptors. Morphine-3-glucuronide and high-dose morphine did not prevent re-uptake of glutamate into presynaptic nerve terminals. In addition, morphine-3-glucuronide and morphine did not inhibit the binding of [sup 3]H-strychnine (glycine receptor antagonist) to synaptic membranes prepared from bovine spinal cord. It is concluded that excitation caused by high-dose morphine and morphine-3-glucuronide is not mediated by an interaction with postsynaptic amino acid receptors. (au) (30 refs.).

  17. Synaptic behaviors of thin-film transistor with a Pt/HfO x /n-type indium–gallium–zinc oxide gate stack

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Paul; Park, Daehoon; Beom, Keonwon; Kim, Hyung Jun; Kang, Chi Jung; Yoon, Tae-Sik

    2018-07-01

    We report a variety of synaptic behaviors in a thin-film transistor (TFT) with a metal-oxide-semiconductor gate stack that has a Pt/HfO x /n-type indium–gallium–zinc oxide (n-IGZO) structure. The three-terminal synaptic TFT exhibits a tunable synaptic weight with a drain current modulation upon repeated application of gate and drain voltages. The synaptic weight modulation is analog, voltage-polarity dependent reversible, and strong with a dynamic range of multiple orders of magnitude (>104). This modulation process emulates biological synaptic potentiation, depression, excitatory-postsynaptic current, paired-pulse facilitation, and short-term to long-term memory transition behaviors as a result of repeated pulsing with respect to the pulse amplitude, width, repetition number, and the interval between pulses. These synaptic behaviors are interpreted based on the changes in the capacitance of the Pt/HfO x /n-IGZO gate stack, the channel mobility, and the threshold voltage that result from the redistribution of oxygen ions by the applied gate voltage. These results demonstrate the potential of this structure for three-terminal synaptic transistor using the gate stack composed of the HfO x gate insulator and the IGZO channel layer.

  18. Stress-Induced Synaptic Dysfunction and Neurotransmitter Release in Alzheimer's Disease: Can Neurotransmitters and Neuromodulators be Potential Therapeutic Targets?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jha, Saurabh Kumar; Jha, Niraj Kumar; Kumar, Dhiraj; Sharma, Renu; Shrivastava, Abhishek; Ambasta, Rashmi K; Kumar, Pravir

    2017-01-01

    The communication between neurons at synaptic junctions is an intriguing process that monitors the transmission of various electro-chemical signals in the central nervous system. Albeit any aberration in the mechanisms associated with transmission of these signals leads to loss of synaptic contacts in both the neocortex and hippocampus thereby causing insidious cognitive decline and memory dysfunction. Compelling evidence suggests that soluble amyloid-β (Aβ) and hyperphosphorylated tau serve as toxins in the dysfunction of synaptic plasticity and aberrant neurotransmitter (NT) release at synapses consequently causing a cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Further, an imbalance between excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmission systems induced by impaired redox signaling and altered mitochondrial integrity is also amenable for such abnormalities. Defective NT release at the synaptic junction causes several detrimental effects associated with altered activity of synaptic proteins, transcription factors, Ca2+ homeostasis, and other molecules critical for neuronal plasticity. These detrimental effects further disrupt the normal homeostasis of neuronal cells and thereby causing synaptic loss. Moreover, the precise mechanistic role played by impaired NTs and neuromodulators (NMs) and altered redox signaling in synaptic dysfunction remains mysterious, and their possible interlink still needs to be investigated. Therefore, this review elucidates the intricate role played by both defective NTs/NMs and altered redox signaling in synaptopathy. Further, the involvement of numerous pharmacological approaches to compensate neurotransmission imbalance has also been discussed, which may be considered as a potential therapeutic approach in synaptopathy associated with AD.

  19. Synaptic behaviors of thin-film transistor with a Pt/HfO x /n-type indium-gallium-zinc oxide gate stack.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Paul; Park, Daehoon; Beom, Keonwon; Kim, Hyung Jun; Kang, Chi Jung; Yoon, Tae-Sik

    2018-07-20

    We report a variety of synaptic behaviors in a thin-film transistor (TFT) with a metal-oxide-semiconductor gate stack that has a Pt/HfO x /n-type indium-gallium-zinc oxide (n-IGZO) structure. The three-terminal synaptic TFT exhibits a tunable synaptic weight with a drain current modulation upon repeated application of gate and drain voltages. The synaptic weight modulation is analog, voltage-polarity dependent reversible, and strong with a dynamic range of multiple orders of magnitude (>10 4 ). This modulation process emulates biological synaptic potentiation, depression, excitatory-postsynaptic current, paired-pulse facilitation, and short-term to long-term memory transition behaviors as a result of repeated pulsing with respect to the pulse amplitude, width, repetition number, and the interval between pulses. These synaptic behaviors are interpreted based on the changes in the capacitance of the Pt/HfO x /n-IGZO gate stack, the channel mobility, and the threshold voltage that result from the redistribution of oxygen ions by the applied gate voltage. These results demonstrate the potential of this structure for three-terminal synaptic transistor using the gate stack composed of the HfO x gate insulator and the IGZO channel layer.

  20. Fine structure of long-term changes in the cochlear nucleus after acoustic overstimulation: chronic degeneration and new growth of synaptic endings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, J J; Gross, J; Potashner, S J; Morest, D K

    2004-09-15

    The companion study showed that acoustic overstimulation of adult chinchillas, with a noise level sufficient to damage the cochlea, led to cytological changes and degeneration of synaptic endings in the cochlear nucleus within 1-16 weeks. In the present study, the same stimulus was used to study the long-term effects on the fine structure of synaptic endings in the cochlear nucleus. For periods of 6 and 8 months after a single exposure to a damaging noise level, there ensued a chronic, continuing process of neurodegeneration involving excitatory and inhibitory synaptic endings. Electron microscopic observations demonstrated freshly occurring degeneration even as late as 8 months. Degeneration was widespread in the neuropil and included the synapses on the globular bushy cell, which forms part of the main ascending auditory pathway. Neurodegeneration was accompanied by newly formed synaptic endings, which repopulated some of the sites vacated previously by axosomatic endings on globular bushy cells. Many of these synaptic endings must arise from central interneurons. The findings suggest that overstimulation can induce a self-sustaining condition of progressive neurodegeneration accompanied by a new growth of synaptic endings. Noise-induced hearing loss thus may progress as a neurodegenerative disease with the capacity for synaptic reorganization within the cochlear nucleus.

  1. Excitatory amino acid receptors mediate asymmetry and lateralization in the descending cardiovascular pathways from the dorsomedial hypothalamus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Henrique Xavier

    Full Text Available The dorsomedial hypothalamus (DMH and lateral/dorsolateral periaqueductal gray (PAG are anatomically and functionally connected. Both the DMH and PAG depend on glutamatergic inputs for activation. We recently reported that removal of GABA-ergic tone in the unilateral DMH produces: asymmetry, that is, a right- (R- sided predominance in cardiac chronotropism, and lateralization, that is, a greater increase in ipsilateral renal sympathetic activity (RSNA. In the current study, we investigated whether excitatory amino acid (EAA receptors in the DMH-PAG pathway contribute to the functional interhemispheric difference. In urethane (1.2 to 1.4 g/kg, i.p. anesthetized rats, we observed that: (i nanoinjections of N-methyl D-aspartate (NMDA 100 pmol/100 nl into the unilateral DMH produced the same right-sided predominance in the control of cardiac chronotropy, (ii nanoinjections of NMDA into the ipsilateral DMH or PAG evoked lateralized RSNA responses, and (iii blockade of EAA receptors in the unilateral DMH attenuated the cardiovascular responses evoked by injection of NMDA into either the R- or left- (L- PAG. In awake rats, nanoinjection of kynurenic acid (1 nmol/100 nL into the L-DMH or R- or L-PAG attenuated the tachycardia evoked by air stress. However, the magnitude of stress-evoked tachycardia was smallest when the EAA receptors of the R-DMH were blocked. We conclude that EAA receptors contribute to the right-sided predominance in cardiac chronotropism. This interhemispheric difference that involves EAA receptors was observed in the DMH but not in the PAG.

  2. F42. CHONDROTIN-6 SULFATE CLUSTERS: ASSOCIATION OF SYNAPTIC DOMAINS AND REGULATION OF SYNAPTIC PLASTICITY DURING FEAR LEARNING

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chelini, Gabriele; Berciu, Cristina; Pilobello, Kanoelani; Peter, Durning; Rachel, Jenkins; Kahn, Moazzzam; Ramikie, Teniel; Subramanian, Siva; Ressler, Kerry; Pantazopoulos, Charalampos; Berretta, Sabina

    2018-01-01

    Abstract Background Emerging evidence from our group and others has brought the brain extracellular matrix (ECM) to the forefront of investigations on brain disorders. Our group has shown that organized perisynaptic ECM aggregates, i.e. perineuronal nets (PNNs) are decreased in several brain regions in people with schizophrenia (SZ) and bipolar disorder (BD). PNNs were detected by their expression of specific chondroitin sulfate proteoglycans (CSPGs), main components of the ECM, thought to play a key role in synaptic regulation during development and adulthood. Our studies have also shown that glial cells expressing CSPGs are altered in these disorders, suggesting a link between glial cell and PNN abnormalities. Finally, we have recently shown that novel CSPG structures, bearing a distinct CS-6 sulfation pattern and named CS-6 glial clusters, are decreased in the amygdala of people with SZ and BD. The morphology and function of CS-6 glial clusters is not currently known, but evidence from rodents and on the role of CSPGs in regulating synaptic functions strongly suggest that they may affect synaptic plasticity. We tested this hypothesis using a combination of human postmortem and rodent brain studies. Methods High Resolution electron microscopy was used to investigate the ultrastructural organization of CS-6 glia clusters. A transgenic mouse model expressing green fluorescent protein in a subset of excitatory pyramidal neurons was used to investigate dendritic spines association with CS-6 glia clusters. Mice were exposed to a single session of auditory fear conditioning for a total of 15 minutes. Animals were euthanized 4 hours after behavioral test. Multiplex immunocytochemistry was used to visualize CS-6 clusters. Results In human tissue, we show that CS-6 glia clusters are widespread in several brain regions, including the amygdala, entorhinal cortex, thalamus and hippocampus. Ultrastructural results show that CS-6 glia clusters are formed by CS-6 accumulations

  3. Synaptic Basis for Differential Orientation Selectivity between Complex and Simple Cells in Mouse Visual Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ya-tang; Liu, Bao-hua; Chou, Xiao-lin; Zhang, Li I; Tao, Huizhong W

    2015-08-05

    In the primary visual cortex (V1), orientation-selective neurons can be categorized into simple and complex cells primarily based on their receptive field (RF) structures. In mouse V1, although previous studies have examined the excitatory/inhibitory interplay underlying orientation selectivity (OS) of simple cells, the synaptic bases for that of complex cells have remained obscure. Here, by combining in vivo loose-patch and whole-cell recordings, we found that complex cells, identified by their overlapping on/off subfields, had significantly weaker OS than simple cells at both spiking and subthreshold membrane potential response levels. Voltage-clamp recordings further revealed that although excitatory inputs to complex and simple cells exhibited a similar degree of OS, inhibition in complex cells was more narrowly tuned than excitation, whereas in simple cells inhibition was more broadly tuned than excitation. The differential inhibitory tuning can primarily account for the difference in OS between complex and simple cells. Interestingly, the differential synaptic tuning correlated well with the spatial organization of synaptic input: the inhibitory visual RF in complex cells was more elongated in shape than its excitatory counterpart and also was more elongated than that in simple cells. Together, our results demonstrate that OS of complex and simple cells is differentially shaped by cortical inhibition based on its orientation tuning profile relative to excitation, which is contributed at least partially by the spatial organization of RFs of presynaptic inhibitory neurons. Simple and complex cells, two classes of principal neurons in the primary visual cortex (V1), are generally thought to be equally selective for orientation. In mouse V1, we report that complex cells, identified by their overlapping on/off subfields, has significantly weaker orientation selectivity (OS) than simple cells. This can be primarily attributed to the differential tuning selectivity

  4. Obesogenic diet intake during pregnancy programs aberrant synaptic plasticity and addiction-like behavior to a palatable food in offspring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Camacho, Alberto; Montalvo-Martinez, Larisa; Cardenas-Perez, Robbi E; Fuentes-Mera, Lizeth; Garza-Ocañas, Lourdes

    2017-07-14

    Contextual food conditioned behaviors require plasticity of glutamatergic neurotransmission in the reward system, involving changes in the expression of including a-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methylisoxazole 4-propionate receptors (AMPA), N-methyl-d-aspartic acid (NMDA) and metabotropic glutamate 2,3 (mGlur 2,3). However, the role of changes in glutamatergic synaptic markers on energy-dense palatable food preference during development has not been described. Here, we determine the effect of nutritional programing during gestation on fat food choices using a conditioned place preference (CPP) test and an operant training response and its effect on glutamatergic markers in the nucleus accumbens (Nac) shell and prefrontal cortex (PFC). Our data showed that rats displayed preference for palatable fat food and an increase in caloric intake when compared to a chow diet. Notably, 74% of rats showing a preference for fat food intake correlate with a positive HFD-paired score whereas 26% failed to get HFD-conditioned. Also, male rats trained under an operant training response schedule (FR1, FR5 and PR) showed high and low responder groups to work for food. Notably, hypercaloric nutritional programing of female rats leads to exacerbation for reinforcers in female offspring compared to offspring from chow diet. Finally, we found that an operant training response to palatable reinforcers correlates with upregulation of mGlur 2,3 in the NAc shell and PFC of male rats and female offspring. Also, we found selective Nr1 upregulation in NAc shell and the PFC of female offspring. Our data suggest that nutritional programing by hypercaloric intake leads to incentive motivation to work for food and synaptic plasticity alteration in the mesolimbic system. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Sequential generation of olfactory bulb glutamatergic neurons by Neurog2-expressing precursor cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brill Monika S

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background While the diversity and spatio-temporal origin of olfactory bulb (OB GABAergic interneurons has been studied in detail, much less is known about the subtypes of glutamatergic OB interneurons. Results We studied the temporal generation and diversity of Neurog2-positive precursor progeny using an inducible genetic fate mapping approach. We show that all subtypes of glutamatergic neurons derive from Neurog2 positive progenitors during development of the OB. Projection neurons, that is, mitral and tufted cells, are produced at early embryonic stages, while a heterogeneous population of glutamatergic juxtaglomerular neurons are generated at later embryonic as well as at perinatal stages. While most juxtaglomerular neurons express the T-Box protein Tbr2, those generated later also express Tbr1. Based on morphological features, these juxtaglomerular cells can be identified as tufted interneurons and short axon cells, respectively. Finally, targeted electroporation experiments provide evidence that while the majority of OB glutamatergic neurons are generated from intrabulbar progenitors, a small portion of them originate from extrabulbar regions at perinatal ages. Conclusions We provide the first comprehensive analysis of the temporal and spatial generation of OB glutamatergic neurons and identify distinct populations of juxtaglomerular interneurons that differ in their antigenic properties and time of origin.

  6. Interplay between glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission alterations in cognitive and motor impairment in minimal hepatic encephalopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Llansola, Marta; Montoliu, Carmina; Agusti, Ana; Hernandez-Rabaza, Vicente; Cabrera-Pastor, Andrea; Gomez-Gimenez, Belen; Malaguarnera, Michele; Dadsetan, Sherry; Belghiti, Majedeline; Garcia-Garcia, Raquel; Balzano, Tiziano; Taoro, Lucas; Felipo, Vicente

    2015-09-01

    The cognitive and motor alterations in hepatic encephalopathy (HE) are the final result of altered neurotransmission and communication between neurons in neuronal networks and circuits. Different neurotransmitter systems cooperate to modulate cognitive and motor function, with a main role for glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission in different brain areas and neuronal circuits. There is an interplay between glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission alterations in cognitive and motor impairment in HE. This interplay may occur: (a) in different brain areas involved in specific neuronal circuits; (b) in the same brain area through cross-modulation of glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission. We will summarize some examples of the (1) interplay between glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission alterations in different areas in the basal ganglia-thalamus-cortex circuit in the motor alterations in minimal hepatic encephalopathy (MHE); (2) interplay between glutamatergic and GABAergic neurotransmission alterations in cerebellum in the impairment of cognitive function in MHE through altered function of the glutamate-nitric oxide-cGMP pathway. We will also comment the therapeutic implications of the above studies and the utility of modulators of glutamate and GABA receptors to restore cognitive and motor function in rats with hyperammonemia and hepatic encephalopathy. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. The influence of the glutamatergic system on cognition in schizophrenia: A systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Elizabeth H X; Bozaoglu, Kiymet; Rossell, Susan L; Gurvich, Caroline

    2017-06-01

    Previous literature showing the role of the glutamatergic system on cognition in schizophrenia has been inconclusive. 44 relevant pharmacological, candidate gene and neuroimaging studies were identified through systematic search following PRISMA guidelines. To be included, studies must have observed at least one objective measure of cognitive performance in patients with schizophrenia and either manipulated or measured the glutamatergic system. Of the cognitive domains observed, memory, working memory and executive functions appear to be most influenced by the glutamatergic pathway. In addition, evidence from the literature suggests that presynaptic components synthesis and uptake of glutamate is involved in memory, while postsynaptic signalling appears to be involved in working memory. In addition, it appears that the glutamatergic pathway is particularly involved in cognitive flexibility and learning potential in regards to executive functioning. The glutamatergic system appears to contribute to the cognitive deficits in schizophrenia, whereby different parts of the pathway are associated with different cognitive domains. This review demonstrates the necessity for cognition to be examined by domain as opposed to globally. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Proteolytic Remodeling of Perineuronal Nets: Effects on Synaptic Plasticity and Neuronal Population Dynamics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Lorenzo Bozzelli

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The perineuronal net (PNN represents a lattice-like structure that is prominently expressed along the soma and proximal dendrites of parvalbumin- (PV- positive interneurons in varied brain regions including the cortex and hippocampus. It is thus apposed to sites at which PV neurons receive synaptic input. Emerging evidence suggests that changes in PNN integrity may affect glutamatergic input to PV interneurons, a population that is critical for the expression of synchronous neuronal population discharges that occur with gamma oscillations and sharp-wave ripples. The present review is focused on the composition of PNNs, posttranslation modulation of PNN components by sulfation and proteolysis, PNN alterations in disease, and potential effects of PNN remodeling on neuronal plasticity at the single-cell and population level.

  9. Optimal properties of analog perceptrons with excitatory weights.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudia Clopath

    Full Text Available The cerebellum is a brain structure which has been traditionally devoted to supervised learning. According to this theory, plasticity at the Parallel Fiber (PF to Purkinje Cell (PC synapses is guided by the Climbing fibers (CF, which encode an 'error signal'. Purkinje cells have thus been modeled as perceptrons, learning input/output binary associations. At maximal capacity, a perceptron with excitatory weights expresses a large fraction of zero-weight synapses, in agreement with experimental findings. However, numerous experiments indicate that the firing rate of Purkinje cells varies in an analog, not binary, manner. In this paper, we study the perceptron with analog inputs and outputs. We show that the optimal input has a sparse binary distribution, in good agreement with the burst firing of the Granule cells. In addition, we show that the weight distribution consists of a large fraction of silent synapses, as in previously studied binary perceptron models, and as seen experimentally.

  10. Synaptic control of motoneuronal excitability

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rekling, J C; Funk, G D; Bayliss, D A

    2000-01-01

    important in understanding the transformation of neural activity to motor behavior. Here, we review recent studies on the control of motoneuronal excitability, focusing on synaptic and cellular properties. We first present a background description of motoneurons: their development, anatomical organization......, and membrane properties, both passive and active. We then describe the general anatomical organization of synaptic input to motoneurons, followed by a description of the major transmitter systems that affect motoneuronal excitability, including ligands, receptor distribution, pre- and postsynaptic actions...... and norepinephrine, and neuropeptides, as well as the glutamate and GABA acting at metabotropic receptors, modulate motoneuronal excitability through pre- and postsynaptic actions. Acting principally via second messenger systems, their actions converge on common effectors, e.g., leak K(+) current, cationic inward...

  11. Adiponectin modulates synaptic plasticity in hippocampal dentate gyrus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pousti, Farideh; Ahmadi, Ramesh; Mirahmadi, Fatemeh; Hosseinmardi, Narges; Rohampour, Kambiz

    2018-01-01

    Recent studies have suggested the involvement of some metabolic hormones in memory formation and synaptic plasticity. Insulin dysfunction is known as an essential process in the pathogenesis of sporadic Alzheimer's disease (AD). In this study we examined whether adiponectin (ADN), as an insulin-sensitizing adipokine, could affect hippocampal synaptic plasticity. Field potential recordings were performed on intracerebroventricular (icv) cannulated urethane anesthetized rats. After baseline recording from dentate gyrus (DG) and 10min prior to high/low frequency stimulation (HFS/LFS), 10μl icv ADN (600nm) were injected. The slope of field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSP) and the amplitude of population spikes (PS) were recorded in response to perforanth path (PP) stimulation. Paired pulse stimuli and ADN injection without any stimulation protocols were also evaluated. Application of ADN before HFS increased PS amplitude recorded in DG significantly (P≤0.05) in comparison to HFS only group. ADN suppressed the potency of LFS to induce long-term depression (LTD), causing a significant difference between fEPSP slope (P≤0.05) and PS amplitude (P≤0.01) between ADN+LFS and ADN group. Paired pulse stimuli applied at 20ms intervals showed more paired pulse facilitation (PPF), when applied after ADN (P≤0.05). ADN induced a chemical long-term potentiation (LTP) in which fEPSP slope and PS amplitude increased significantly (P≤0.01 and P≤0.05, respectively). It is concluded that ADN is able to potentiate the HFS-induced LTP and suppress LFS-induced LTD. ADN caused a chemical LTP, when applied without any tetanic protocol. ADN may enhance the presynaptic release probability. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  12. Synaptic reorganization in the adult rat's ventral cochlear nucleus following its total sensory deafferentation.

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    Heika Hildebrandt

    Full Text Available Ablation of a cochlea causes total sensory deafferentation of the cochlear nucleus in the brainstem, providing a model to investigate nervous degeneration and formation of new synaptic contacts in the adult brain. In a quantitative electron microscopical study on the plasticity of the central auditory system of the Wistar rat, we first determined what fraction of the total number of synaptic contact zones (SCZs in the anteroventral cochlear nucleus (AVCN is attributable to primary sensory innervation and how many synapses remain after total unilateral cochlear ablation. Second, we attempted to identify the potential for a deafferentation-dependent synaptogenesis. SCZs were ultrastructurally identified before and after deafferentation in tissue treated for ethanolic phosphotungstic acid (EPTA staining. This was combined with pre-embedding immunocytochemistry for gephyrin identifying inhibitory SCZs, the growth-associated protein GAP-43, glutamate, and choline acetyltransferase. A stereological analysis of EPTA stained sections revealed 1.11±0.09 (S.E.M.×10(9 SCZs per mm(3 of AVCN tissue. Within 7 days of deafferentation, this number was down by 46%. Excitatory and inhibitory synapses were differentially affected on the side of deafferentation. Excitatory synapses were quickly reduced and then began to increase in number again, necessarily being complemented from sources other than cochlear neurons, while inhibitory synapses were reduced more slowly and continuously. The result was a transient rise of the relative fraction of inhibitory synapses with a decline below original levels thereafter. Synaptogenesis was inferred by the emergence of morphologically immature SCZs that were consistently associated with GAP-43 immunoreactivity. SCZs of this type were estimated to make up a fraction of close to 30% of the total synaptic population present by ten weeks after sensory deafferentation. In conclusion, there appears to be a substantial potential

  13. Effects of chronic stress in adolescence on learned fear, anxiety, and synaptic transmission in the rat prelimbic cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Negrón-Oyarzo, Ignacio; Pérez, Miguel Ángel; Terreros, Gonzalo; Muñoz, Pablo; Dagnino-Subiabre, Alexies

    2014-02-01

    The prelimbic cortex and amygdala regulate the extinction of conditioned fear and anxiety, respectively. In adult rats, chronic stress affects the dendritic morphology of these brain areas, slowing extinction of learned fear and enhancing anxiety. The aim of this study was to determine whether rats subjected to chronic stress in adolescence show changes in learned fear, anxiety, and synaptic transmission in the prelimbic cortex during adulthood. Male Sprague Dawley rats were subjected to seven days of restraint stress on postnatal day forty-two (PND 42, adolescence). Afterward, the fear-conditioning paradigm was used to study conditioned fear extinction. Anxiety-like behavior was measured one day (PND 50) and twenty-one days (PND 70, adulthood) after stress using the elevated-plus maze and dark-light box tests, respectively. With another set of rats, excitatory synaptic transmission was analyzed with slices of the prelimbic cortex. Rats that had been stressed during adolescence and adulthood had higher anxiety-like behavior levels than did controls, while stress-induced slowing of learned fear extinction in adolescence was reversed during adulthood. As well, the field excitatory postsynaptic potentials of stressed adolescent rats had significantly lower amplitudes than those of controls, although the amplitudes were higher in adulthood. Our results demonstrate that short-term stress in adolescence induces strong effects on excitatory synaptic transmission in the prelimbic cortex and extinction of learned fear, where the effect of stress on anxiety is more persistent than on the extinction of learned fear. These data contribute to the understanding of stress neurobiology. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Visual cortex plasticity evokes excitatory alterations in the hippocampus

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    Marian Tsanov

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available The integration of episodic sequences in the hippocampus is believed to occur during theta rhythm episodes, when cortico-hippocampal dialog results in reconfiguration of neuronal assemblies. As the visual cortex (VC is a major source of sensory information to the hippocampus, information processing in the cortex may affect hippocampal network oscillations, facilitating the induction of synaptic modifications. We investigated to what degree the field activity in the primary VC, elicited by sensory or electrical stimulation, correlates with hippocampal oscillatory and synaptic responsiveness, in freely behaving adult rats. We found that the spectral power of theta rhythm (4-10Hz in the dentate gyrus (DG, increases in parallel with high-frequency oscillations in layer 2/3 of the VC and that this correlation depends on the degree of exploratory activity. When we mimic robust thalamocortical activity by theta-burst application to dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus, a hippocampal theta increase occurs, followed by a persistent potentiation of the DG granule field population spike. Furthermore, the potentiation of DG neuronal excitability tightly correlates with the concurrently occurring VC plasticity. The concurrent enhancement of VC and DG activity is also combined with a highly negative synchronization between hippocampal and cortical low frequency oscillations. Exploration of familiar environment decreases the degree of this synchrony. Our data propose that novel visual information can induce high-power fluctuations in intrinsic excitability for both VC and hippocampus, potent enough to induce experience-dependent modulation of cortico-hippocampal connections. This interaction may comprise one of the endogenous triggers for long-term synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

  16. Circuit and synaptic mechanisms of repeated stress: Perspectives from differing contexts, duration, and development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bath, Kevin G; Russo, Scott J; Pleil, Kristen E; Wohleb, Eric S; Duman, Ronald S; Radley, Jason J

    2017-12-01

    The current review is meant to synthesize research presented as part of a symposium at the 2016 Neurobiology of Stress workshop in Irvine California. The focus of the symposium was "Stress and the Synapse: New Concepts and Methods" and featured the work of several junior investigators. The presentations focused on the impact of various forms of stress (altered maternal care, binge alcohol drinking, chronic social defeat, and chronic unpredictable stress) on synaptic function, neurodevelopment, and behavioral outcomes. One of the goals of the symposium was to highlight the mechanisms accounting for how the nervous system responds to stress and their impact on outcome measures with converging effects on the development of pathological behavior. Dr. Kevin Bath's presentation focused on the impact of disruptions in early maternal care and its impact on the timing of hippocampus maturation in mice, finding that this form of stress drove accelerated synaptic and behavioral maturation, and contributed to the later emergence of risk for cognitive and emotional disturbance. Dr. Scott Russo highlighted the impact of chronic social defeat stress in adolescent mice on the development and plasticity of reward circuity, with a focus on glutamatergic development in the nucleus accumbens and mesolimbic dopamine system, and the implications of these changes for disruptions in social and hedonic response, key processes disturbed in depressive pathology. Dr. Kristen Pleil described synaptic changes in the bed nuclei of the stria terminalis that underlie the behavioral consequences of allostatic load produced by repeated cycles of alcohol binge drinking and withdrawal. Dr. Eric Wohleb and Dr. Ron Duman provided new data associating decreased mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) signaling and neurobiological changes in the synapses in response to chronic unpredictable stress, and highlighted the potential for the novel antidepressant ketamine to rescue synaptic and behavioral effects

  17. Forebrain glutamatergic, but not GABAergic, neurons mediate anxiogenic effects of the glucocorticoid receptor

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hartmann, J.; Dedic, N.; Pöhlmann, M.L.; Häusl, A.; Karst, H.; Engelhardt, C.; Westerholz, S.; Wagner, K.V.; Labermaier, C.; Hoeijmakers, L.; Kertokarijo, M.; Chen, A.; Joëls, M.; Deussing, J.M.; Schmidt, M.V.

    2017-01-01

    Anxiety disorders constitute a major disease and social burden worldwide; however, many questions concerning the underlying molecular mechanisms still remain open. Besides the involvement of the major excitatory (glutamate) and inhibitory (gamma aminobutyric acid (GABA)) neurotransmitter circuits in

  18. CDKL5 ensures excitatory synapse stability by reinforcing NGL-1-PSD95 interaction in the postsynaptic compartment and is impaired in patient iPSC-derived neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ricciardi, Sara; Ungaro, Federica; Hambrock, Melanie; Rademacher, Nils; Stefanelli, Gilda; Brambilla, Dario; Sessa, Alessandro; Magagnotti, Cinzia; Bachi, Angela; Giarda, Elisa; Verpelli, Chiara; Kilstrup-Nielsen, Charlotte; Sala, Carlo; Kalscheuer, Vera M; Broccoli, Vania

    2012-09-01

    Mutations of the cyclin-dependent kinase-like 5 (CDKL5) and netrin-G1 (NTNG1) genes cause a severe neurodevelopmental disorder with clinical features that are closely related to Rett syndrome, including intellectual disability, early-onset intractable epilepsy and autism. We report here that CDKL5 is localized at excitatory synapses and contributes to correct dendritic spine structure and synapse activity. To exert this role, CDKL5 binds and phosphorylates the cell adhesion molecule NGL-1. This phosphorylation event ensures a stable association between NGL-1 and PSD95. Accordingly, phospho-mutant NGL-1 is unable to induce synaptic contacts whereas its phospho-mimetic form binds PSD95 more efficiently and partially rescues the CDKL5-specific spine defects. Interestingly, similarly to rodent neurons, iPSC-derived neurons from patients with CDKL5 mutations exhibit aberrant dendritic spines, thus suggesting a common function of CDKL5 in mice and humans.

  19. 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.

  20. Distinct Functions of Endophilin Isoforms in Synaptic Vesicle Endocytosis

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    Jifeng Zhang

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Endophilin isoforms perform distinct characteristics in their interactions with N-type Ca2+ channels and dynamin. However, precise functional differences for the endophilin isoforms on synaptic vesicle (SV endocytosis remain unknown. By coupling RNA interference and electrophysiological recording techniques in cultured rat hippocampal neurons, we investigated the functional differences of three isoforms of endophilin in SV endocytosis. The results showed that the amplitude of normalized evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents in endophilin1 knockdown neurons decreased significantly for both single train and multiple train stimulations. Similar results were found using endophilin2 knockdown neurons, whereas endophilin3 siRNA exhibited no change compared with control neurons. Endophilin1 and endophilin2 affected SV endocytosis, but the effect of endophilin1 and endophilin2 double knockdown was not different from that of either knockdown alone. This result suggested that endophilin1 and endophilin2 functioned together but not independently during SV endocytosis. Taken together, our results indicate that SV endocytosis is sustained by endophilin1 and endophilin2 isoforms, but not by endophilin3, in primary cultured hippocampal neurons.

  1. Pyk2 modulates hippocampal excitatory synapses and contributes to cognitive deficits in a Huntington’s disease model

    KAUST Repository

    Giralt, Albert; Brito, Veronica; Chevy, Quentin; Simonnet, Clé mence; Otsu, Yo; Cifuentes-Dí az, Carmen; Pins, Benoit de; Coura, Renata; Alberch, Jordi; Giné s, Sí lvia; Poncer, Jean-Christophe; Girault, Jean-Antoine

    2017-01-01

    The structure and function of spines and excitatory synapses are under the dynamic control of multiple signalling networks. Although tyrosine phosphorylation is involved, its regulation and importance are not well understood. Here we study the role of Pyk2, a non-receptor calcium-dependent protein-tyrosine kinase highly expressed in the hippocampus. Hippocampal-related learning and CA1 long-term potentiation are severely impaired in Pyk2-deficient mice and are associated with alterations in NMDA receptors, PSD-95 and dendritic spines. In cultured hippocampal neurons, Pyk2 has autophosphorylation-dependent and -independent roles in determining PSD-95 enrichment and spines density. Pyk2 levels are decreased in the hippocampus of individuals with Huntington and in the R6/1 mouse model of the disease. Normalizing Pyk2 levels in the hippocampus of R6/1 mice rescues memory deficits, spines pathology and PSD-95 localization. Our results reveal a role for Pyk2 in spine structure and synaptic function, and suggest that its deficit contributes to Huntington’s disease cognitive impairments.

  2. Neurotrophin and FGF Signaling Adapter Proteins, FRS2 and FRS3, Regulate Dentate Granule Cell Maturation and Excitatory Synaptogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nandi, Sayan; Alviña, Karina; Lituma, Pablo J; Castillo, Pablo E; Hébert, Jean M

    2018-01-15

    Dentate granule cells (DGCs) play important roles in cognitive processes. Knowledge about how growth factors such as FGFs and neurotrophins contribute to the maturation and synaptogenesis of DGCs is limited. Here, using brain-specific and germline mouse mutants we show that a module of neurotrophin and FGF signaling, the FGF Receptor Substrate (FRS) family of intracellular adapters, FRS2 and FRS3, are together required for postnatal brain development. In the hippocampus, FRS promotes dentate gyrus morphogenesis and DGC maturation during developmental neurogenesis, similar to previously published functions for both neurotrophins and FGFs. Consistent with a role in DGC maturation, two-photon imaging revealed that Frs2,3-double mutants have reduced numbers of dendritic branches and spines in DGCs. Functional analysis further showed that double-mutant mice exhibit fewer excitatory synaptic inputs onto DGCs. These observations reveal roles for FRS adapters in DGC maturation and synaptogenesis and suggest that FRS proteins may act as an important node for FGF and neurotrophin signaling in postnatal hippocampal development. Copyright © 2017 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Pyk2 modulates hippocampal excitatory synapses and contributes to cognitive deficits in a Huntington’s disease model

    KAUST Repository

    Giralt, Albert

    2017-05-30

    The structure and function of spines and excitatory synapses are under the dynamic control of multiple signalling networks. Although tyrosine phosphorylation is involved, its regulation and importance are not well understood. Here we study the role of Pyk2, a non-receptor calcium-dependent protein-tyrosine kinase highly expressed in the hippocampus. Hippocampal-related learning and CA1 long-term potentiation are severely impaired in Pyk2-deficient mice and are associated with alterations in NMDA receptors, PSD-95 and dendritic spines. In cultured hippocampal neurons, Pyk2 has autophosphorylation-dependent and -independent roles in determining PSD-95 enrichment and spines density. Pyk2 levels are decreased in the hippocampus of individuals with Huntington and in the R6/1 mouse model of the disease. Normalizing Pyk2 levels in the hippocampus of R6/1 mice rescues memory deficits, spines pathology and PSD-95 localization. Our results reveal a role for Pyk2 in spine structure and synaptic function, and suggest that its deficit contributes to Huntington’s disease cognitive impairments.

  4. Tuning synaptic transmission in the hippocampus by stress: The CRH system

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    Yuncai eChen

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available To enhance survival, an organism needs to remember--and learn from--threatening or stressful events. This fact necessitates the presence of mechanisms by which stress can influence synaptic transmission in brain regions, such as hippocampus, that subserve learning and memory. A major focus of this series of monographs is on the role and actions of adrenal-derived hormones, corticosteroids, and of brain-derived neurotransmitters, on synaptic function in the stressed hippocampus. Here we focus on the contribution of hippocampus-intrinsic, stress-activated CRH-CRH receptor signaling to the function and structure of hippocampal synapses. CRH is expressed in interneurons of adult hippocampus, and is released from axon terminals during stress. The peptide exerts time- and dose-dependent effects on learning and memory via modulation of synaptic function and plasticity. Whereas physiological levels of CRH, acting over seconds to minutes, augment memory processes, exposure to presumed severe-stress levels of the peptide results in spine retraction and loss of synapses over more protracted time-frames. Loss of dendritic spines (and hence of synapses takes place through actin cytoskeleton collapse downstream of CRHR1 receptors that reside within excitatory synapses on spine heads. Chronic exposure to stress levels of CRH may promote dying-back (atrophy of spine-carrying dendrites. Thus, the acute effects of CRH may contribute to stress-induced adaptive mechanisms, whereas chronic or excessive exposure to the peptide may promote learning problems and premature cognitive decline.

  5. Enhancement of synaptic transmission induced by BDNF in cultured cortical neurons

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    He, Jun; Gong, Hui; Zeng, Shaoqun; Li, Yanling; Luo, Qingming

    2005-03-01

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), like other neurotrophins, has long-term effects on neuronal survival and differentiation; furthermore, BDNF has been reported to exert an acute potentiation of synaptic activity and are critically involved in long-term potentiation (LTP). We found that BDNF rapidly induced potentiation of synaptic activity and an increase in the intracellular Ca2+ concentration in cultured cortical neurons. Within minutes of BDNF application to cultured cortical neurons, spontaneous firing rate was dramatically increased as were the frequency and amplitude of excitatory spontaneous postsynaptic currents (EPSCs). Fura-2 recordings showed that BDNF acutely elicited an increase in intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca2+]c). This effect was partially dependent on [Ca2+]o; The BDNF-induced increase in [Ca2+]c can not be completely blocked by Ca2+-free solution. It was completely blocked by K252a and partially blocked by Cd2+ and TTX. The results demonstrate that BDNF can enhances synaptic transmission and that this effect is accompanied by a rise in [Ca2+]c that requires two route: the release of Ca2+ from intracellular calcium stores and influx of extracellular Ca2+ through voltage-dependent Ca2+ channels in cultured cortical neurons.

  6. Norepinephrine versus dopamine and their interaction in modulating synaptic function in the prefrontal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xing, Bo; Li, Yan-Chun; Gao, Wen-Jun

    2016-06-15

    Among the neuromodulators that regulate prefrontal cortical circuit function, the catecholamine transmitters norepinephrine (NE) and dopamine (DA) stand out as powerful players in working memory and attention. Perturbation of either NE or DA signaling is implicated in the pathogenesis of several neuropsychiatric disorders, including attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), schizophrenia, and drug addiction. Although the precise mechanisms employed by NE and DA to cooperatively control prefrontal functions are not fully understood, emerging research indicates that both transmitters regulate electrical and biochemical aspects of neuronal function by modulating convergent ionic and synaptic signaling in the prefrontal cortex (PFC). This review summarizes previous studies that investigated the effects of both NE and DA on excitatory and inhibitory transmissions in the prefrontal cortical circuitry. Specifically, we focus on the functional interaction between NE and DA in prefrontal cortical local circuitry, synaptic integration, signaling pathways, and receptor properties. Although it is clear that both NE and DA innervate the PFC extensively and modulate synaptic function by activating distinctly different receptor subtypes and signaling pathways, it remains unclear how these two systems coordinate their actions to optimize PFC function for appropriate behavior. Throughout this review, we provide perspectives and highlight several critical topics for future studies. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled SI: Noradrenergic System. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Kalirin-7 is necessary for normal NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic plasticity

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    Lemtiri-Chlieh Fouad

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Dendritic spines represent the postsynaptic component of the vast majority of excitatory synapses present in the mammalian forebrain. The ability of spines to rapidly alter their shape, size, number and receptor content in response to stimulation is considered to be of paramount importance during the development of synaptic plasticity. Indeed, long-term potentiation (LTP, widely believed to be a cellular correlate of learning and memory, has been repeatedly shown to induce both spine enlargement and the formation of new dendritic spines. In our studies, we focus on Kalirin-7 (Kal7, a Rho GDP/GTP exchange factor (Rho-GEF localized to the postsynaptic density that plays a crucial role in the development and maintenance of dendritic spines both in vitro and in vivo. Previous studies have shown that mice lacking Kal7 (Kal7KO have decreased dendritic spine density in the hippocampus as well as focal hippocampal-dependent learning impairments. Results We have performed a detailed electrophysiological characterization of the role of Kal7 in hippocampal synaptic plasticity. We show that loss of Kal7 results in impaired NMDA receptor-dependent LTP and long-term depression, whereas a NMDA receptor-independent form of LTP is shown to be normal in the absence of Kal7. Conclusions These results indicate that Kal7 is an essential and selective modulator of NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus.

  8. Lack of paternal care affects synaptic development in the anterior cingulate cortex.

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    Ovtscharoff, Wladimir; Helmeke, Carina; Braun, Katharina

    2006-10-20

    Exposure to enriched or impoverished environmental conditions, experience and learning are factors which influence brain development, and it has been shown that neonatal emotional experience significantly interferes with the synaptic development of higher associative forebrain areas. Here, we analyzed the impact of paternal care, i.e. the father's emotional contribution towards his offspring, on the synaptic development of the anterior cingulate cortex. Our light and electron microscopic comparison of biparentally raised control animals and animals which were raised in single-mother families revealed no significant differences in spine densities on the apical dendrites of layer II/III pyramidal neurons and of asymmetric and symmetric spine synapses. However, significantly reduced densities (-33%) of symmetric shaft synapses were found in layer II of the fatherless animals compared to controls. This finding indicates an imbalance between excitatory and inhibitory synapses in the anterior cingulate cortex of father-deprived animals. Our results query the general assumption that a father has less impact on the synaptic maturation of his offspring's brain than the mother.

  9. Kalirin-7 is necessary for normal NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic plasticity

    KAUST Repository

    Lemtiri-Chlieh, Fouad

    2011-12-19

    Background: Dendritic spines represent the postsynaptic component of the vast majority of excitatory synapses present in the mammalian forebrain. The ability of spines to rapidly alter their shape, size, number and receptor content in response to stimulation is considered to be of paramount importance during the development of synaptic plasticity. Indeed, long-term potentiation (LTP), widely believed to be a cellular correlate of learning and memory, has been repeatedly shown to induce both spine enlargement and the formation of new dendritic spines. In our studies, we focus on Kalirin-7 (Kal7), a Rho GDP/GTP exchange factor (Rho-GEF) localized to the postsynaptic density that plays a crucial role in the development and maintenance of dendritic spines both in vitro and in vivo. Previous studies have shown that mice lacking Kal7 (Kal7 KO) have decreased dendritic spine density in the hippocampus as well as focal hippocampal-dependent learning impairments.Results: We have performed a detailed electrophysiological characterization of the role of Kal7 in hippocampal synaptic plasticity. We show that loss of Kal7 results in impaired NMDA receptor-dependent LTP and long-term depression, whereas a NMDA receptor-independent form of LTP is shown to be normal in the absence of Kal7.Conclusions: These results indicate that Kal7 is an essential and selective modulator of NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus. 2011 Lemtiri-Chlieh et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

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

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    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. Endogenous Glucagon-like Peptide-1 Suppresses High-Fat Food Intake by Reducing Synaptic Drive onto Mesolimbic Dopamine Neurons

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    Xue-Feng Wang

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1 and its analogs act as appetite suppressants and have been proven to be clinically efficacious in reducing body weight in obese individuals. Central GLP-1 is expressed in a small population of brainstem cells located in the nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS, which project to a wide range of brain areas. However, it remains unclear how endogenous GLP-1 released in the brain contributes to appetite regulation. Using chemogenetic tools, we discovered that central GLP-1 acts on the midbrain ventral tegmental area (VTA and suppresses high-fat food intake. We used integrated pathway tracing and synaptic physiology to further demonstrate that activation of GLP-1 receptors specifically reduces the excitatory synaptic strength of dopamine (DA neurons within the VTA that project to the nucleus accumbens (NAc medial shell. These data suggest that GLP-1 released from NTS neurons can reduce highly palatable food intake by suppressing mesolimbic DA signaling.

  12. Mice lacking the synaptic adhesion molecule Neph2/Kirrel3 display moderate hyperactivity and defective novel object preference

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    Su Yeon eChoi

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Synaptic adhesion molecules regulate diverse aspects of neuronal synapse development, including synapse specificity, formation, and maturation. Neph2, also known as Kirrel3, is an immunoglobulin superfamily adhesion molecule implicated in intellectual disability, neurocognitive delay associated with Jacobsen syndrome, and autism spectrum disorders. We here report mice lacking Neph2 (Neph2–/– mice display moderate hyperactivity in a familiar but not novel environment and novel object recognition deficit with normal performances in Morris water maze spatial learning and memory, contextual fear conditioning and extinction, and pattern separation tests. These mice show normal levels of anxiety-like behaviors, social interaction, and repetitive behaviors. At the synapse level, Neph2–/– dentate gyrus granule cells exhibit unaltered dendritic spine density and spontaneous excitatory synaptic transmission. These results suggest that Neph2 is important for normal locomotor activity and object recognition memory.

  13. Trans-synaptic zinc mobilization improves social interaction in two mouse models of autism through NMDAR activation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Eun-Jae; Lee, Hyejin; Huang, Tzyy-Nan; Chung, Changuk; Shin, Wangyong; Kim, Kyungdeok; Koh, Jae-Young; Hsueh, Yi-Ping; Kim, Eunjoon

    2015-01-01

    Genetic aspects of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) have recently been extensively explored, but environmental influences that affect ASDs have received considerably less attention. Zinc (Zn) is a nutritional factor implicated in ASDs, but evidence for a strong association and linking mechanism is largely lacking. Here we report that trans-synaptic Zn mobilization rapidly rescues social interaction in two independent mouse models of ASD. In mice lacking Shank2, an excitatory postsynaptic scaffolding protein, postsynaptic Zn elevation induced by clioquinol (a Zn chelator and ionophore) improves social interaction. Postsynaptic Zn is mainly derived from presynaptic pools and activates NMDA receptors (NMDARs) through postsynaptic activation of the tyrosine kinase Src. Clioquinol also improves social interaction in mice haploinsufficient for the transcription factor Tbr1, which accompanies NMDAR activation in the amygdala. These results suggest that trans-synaptic Zn mobilization induced by clioquinol rescues social deficits in mouse models of ASD through postsynaptic Src and NMDAR activation. PMID:25981743

  14. 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.

  15. NMDA receptor GluN2A/GluN2B subunit ratio as synaptic trait of levodopa-induced dyskinesias: from experimental models to patients

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    Manuela eMellone

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Levodopa-induced dyskinesias (LIDs are major complications in the pharmacological management of Parkinson’s disease (PD. Abnormal glutamatergic transmission in the striatum is considered a key factor in the development of LIDs. This work aims at i. characterizing NMDA receptor GluN2A/GluN2B subunit ratio as a common synaptic trait in rat and primate models of LIDs and in dyskinetic PD patients, and ii. validating the potential therapeutic effect of a cell-permeable peptide interfering with GluN2A synaptic localization on the dyskinetic behavior of these experimental models of LIDs. Here we demonstrate an altered ratio of synaptic GluN2A/GluN2B-containing NMDA receptors in the striatum of levodopa-treated dyskinetic rats and monkeys as well as in post-mortem tissue from dyskinetic PD patients. The modulation of synaptic NMDA receptor composition by a cell-permeable peptide interfering with GluN2A subunit interaction with the scaffolding protein PSD-95 leads to a reduction in the dyskinetic motor behavior in the two animal models of LIDs. Our results indicate that targeting synaptic NMDA receptor subunit composition may represent an intriguing therapeutic approach aimed at ameliorating levodopa motor side effects.

  16. Eliminating Glutamatergic Input onto Horizontal Cells Changes the Dynamic Range and Receptive Field Organization of Mouse Retinal Ganglion Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ströh, Sebastian; Puller, Christian; Swirski, Sebastian; Hölzel, Maj-Britt; van der Linde, Lea I S; Segelken, Jasmin; Schultz, Konrad; Block, Christoph; Monyer, Hannah; Willecke, Klaus; Weiler, Reto; Greschner, Martin; Janssen-Bienhold, Ulrike; Dedek, Karin

    2018-02-21

    In the mammalian retina, horizontal cells receive glutamatergic inputs from many rod and cone photoreceptors and return feedback signals to them, thereby changing photoreceptor glutamate release in a light-dependent manner. Horizontal cells also provide feedforward signals to bipolar cells. It is unclear, however, how horizontal cell signals also affect the temporal, spatial, and contrast tuning in retinal output neurons, the ganglion cells. To study this, we generated a genetically modified mouse line in which we eliminated the light dependency of feedback by deleting glutamate receptors from mouse horizontal cells. This genetic modification allowed us to investigate the impact of horizontal cells on ganglion cell signaling independent of the actual mode of feedback in the outer retina and without pharmacological manipulation of signal transmission. In control and genetically modified mice (both sexes), we recorded the light responses of transient OFF-α retinal ganglion cells in the intact retina. Excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) were reduced and the cells were tuned to lower temporal frequencies and higher contrasts, presumably because photoreceptor output was attenuated. Moreover, receptive fields of recorded cells showed a significantly altered surround structure. Our data thus suggest that horizontal cells are responsible for adjusting the dynamic range of retinal ganglion cells and, together with amacrine cells, contribute to the center/surround organization of ganglion cell receptive fields in the mouse. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Horizontal cells represent a major neuronal class in the mammalian retina and provide lateral feedback and feedforward signals to photoreceptors and bipolar cells, respectively. The mode of signal transmission remains controversial and, moreover, the contribution of horizontal cells to visual processing is still elusive. To address the question of how horizontal cells affect retinal output signals, we recorded the light

  17. Low-Frequency rTMS Ameliorates Autistic-Like Behaviors in Rats Induced by Neonatal Isolation Through Regulating the Synaptic GABA Transmission

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    Tao Tan

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Patients with autism spectrum disorder (ASD display abnormalities in neuronal development, synaptic function and neural circuits. The imbalance of excitatory and inhibitory (E/I synaptic transmission has been proposed to cause the main behavioral characteristics of ASD. Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS can directly or indirectly induce excitability and synaptic plasticity changes in the brain noninvasively. However, whether rTMS can ameliorate autistic-like behaviors in animal model via regulating the balance of E/I synaptic transmission is unknown. By using our recent reported animal model with autistic-like behaviors induced by neonatal isolation (postnatal days 1–9, we found that low-frequency rTMS (LF-rTMS, 1 Hz treatment for 2 weeks effectively alleviated the acquired autistic-like symptoms, as reflected by an increase in social interaction and decrease in self-grooming, anxiety- and depressive-like behaviors in young adult rats compared to those in untreated animals. Furthermore, the amelioration in autistic-like behavior was accompanied by a restoration of the balance between E/I activity, especially at the level of synaptic transmission and receptors in synaptosomes. These findings indicated that LF-rTMS may alleviate the symptoms of ASD-like behaviors caused by neonatal isolation through regulating the synaptic GABA transmission, suggesting that LF-rTMS may be a potential therapeutic technique to treat ASD.

  18. Excitatory Neuronal Hubs Configure Multisensory Integration of Slow Waves in Association Cortex

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    Satoshi Kuroki

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Summary: Multisensory integration (MSI is a fundamental emergent property of the mammalian brain. During MSI, perceptual information encoded in patterned activity is processed in multimodal association cortex. The systems-level neuronal dynamics that coordinate MSI, however, are unknown. Here, we demonstrate intrinsic hub-like network activity in the association cortex that regulates MSI. We engineered calcium reporter mouse lines based on the fluorescence resonance energy transfer sensor yellow cameleon (YC2.60 expressed in excitatory or inhibitory neurons. In medial and parietal association cortex, we observed spontaneous slow waves that self-organized into hubs defined by long-range excitatory and local inhibitory circuits. Unlike directional source/sink-like flows in sensory areas, medial/parietal excitatory and inhibitory hubs had net-zero balanced inputs. Remarkably, multisensory stimulation triggered rapid phase-locking mainly of excitatory hub activity persisting for seconds after the stimulus offset. Therefore, association cortex tends to form balanced excitatory networks that configure slow-wave phase-locking for MSI. Video Abstract: : Kuroki et al. performed cell-type-specific, wide-field FRET-based calcium imaging to visualize cortical network activity induced by multisensory inputs. They observed phase-locking of cortical slow waves in excitatory neuronal hubs in association cortical areas that may underlie multisensory integration. Keywords: wide-field calcium imaging, multisensory integration, cortical slow waves, association cortex, phase locking, fluorescence resonance energy transfer, spontaneous activity, excitatory neuron, inhibitory neuron, mouse

  19. Liraglutide Modulates Appetite and Body Weight Via GLP-1R-Expressing Glutamatergic Neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, Jessica M; Pei, Hongjuan; Sandoval, Darleen A; Seeley, Randy J; Chang, Rui B; Liberles, Stephen D; Olson, David P

    2018-05-18

    Glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor (GLP-1R) agonists are FDA-approved weight loss drugs. Despite their widespread use, the sites of action through which GLP-1R agonists (GLP1RAs) impact appetite and body weight are still not fully understood. Here, we determined whether GLP-1Rs in either GABAergic or glutamatergic neurons are necessary for the acute and chronic effects of the GLP1RA liraglutide on food intake, visceral illness, body weight and neural network activation. We found that mice lacking GLP-1Rs in vGAT -expressing GABAergic neurons responded identically to controls in all parameters measured, whereas deletion of GLP-1Rs in vGlut2 -expressing glutamatergic neurons eliminated liraglutide-induced weight loss and visceral illness and severely attenuated its effects on feeding. Concomitantly, deletion of GLP-1Rs from glutamatergic neurons completely abolished the neural network activation observed after liraglutide administration. We conclude that liraglutide activates a dispersed but discrete neural network to mediate its physiological effects, and that these effects require GLP-1R expression on glutamatergic but not GABAergic neurons. © 2018 by the American Diabetes Association.

  20. Glutamatergic Effects of Divalproex in Adolescents with Mania: A Proton Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strawn, Jeffrey R.; Patel, Nick C.; Chu, Wen-Jang; Lee, Jing-Huei; Adler, Caleb M.; Kim, Mi Jung; Bryan, Holly S.; Alfieri, David C.; Welge, Jeffrey A.; Blom, Thomas J.; Nandagopal, Jayasree J.; Strakowski, Stephen M.; DelBello, Melissa P.

    2012-01-01

    Objectives: This study used proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy ([superscript 1]H MRS) to evaluate the in vivo effects of extended-release divalproex sodium on the glutamatergic system in adolescents with bipolar disorder, and to identify baseline neurochemical predictors of clinical remission. Method: Adolescents with bipolar disorder who were…

  1. Volterra representation enables modeling of complex synaptic nonlinear dynamics in large-scale simulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Eric Y; Bouteiller, Jean-Marie C; Song, Dong; Baudry, Michel; Berger, Theodore W

    2015-01-01

    Chemical synapses are comprised of a wide collection of intricate signaling pathways involving complex dynamics. These mechanisms are often reduced to simple spikes or exponential representations in order to enable computer simulations at higher spatial levels of complexity. However, these representations cannot capture important nonlinear dynamics found in synaptic transmission. Here, we propose an input-output (IO) synapse model capable of generating complex nonlinear dynamics while maintaining low computational complexity. This IO synapse model is an extension of a detailed mechanistic glutamatergic synapse model capable of capturing the input-output relationships of the mechanistic model using the Volterra functional power series. We demonstrate that the IO synapse model is able to successfully track the nonlinear dynamics of the synapse up to the third order with high accuracy. We also evaluate the accuracy of the IO synapse model at different input frequencies and compared its performance with that of kinetic models in compartmental neuron models. Our results demonstrate that the IO synapse model is capable of efficiently replicating complex nonlinear dynamics that were represented in the original mechanistic model and provide a method to replicate complex and diverse synaptic transmission within neuron network simulations.

  2. Effect of Aggregated β-Amyloid (1-42 on Synaptic Plasticity of Hippocampal Dentate Gyrus Granule Cells in Vivo

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    Shirin Babri

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Alzheimer’s disease (AD is a common neurodegenerative disorder in elderly people with an impairment of cognitive decline and memory loss. β-amyloid (Aβ as a potent neurotoxic peptide has a pivotal role in the pathogenesis of AD. This disease begins with impairment in synaptic functions before developing into later neuro­degeneration and neuronal loss. The aim of this study was to evaluate the synaptic plasticity and electrophysiological function of granule cells in hippocampal dentate gyrus (DG after intracerebroventricular (i.c.v. administration of aggregated Aβ (1-42 peptide in vivo. Methods: Animals were divided to control and Aβ (1-42 groups. Long-term potentia­tion (LTP in perforant path-DG synapses was assessed in order to investigate the effect of aggregated Aβ (1-42 on synaptic plasticity. Field excitatory post-synaptic potential (fEPSP slope and population spike (PS amplitude were measured. Results: Administration of Aβ (1-42 significantly decreased fEPSP slope and PS amplitude in Aβ (1-42 group comparing with the control group and had no effect on baseline activity of neurons. Conclusion: The present study indicates that administration of aggregated form of Aβ (1-42 into the lateral ventricle effectively inhibits LTP in granular cells of the DG in hippocampus in vivo.

  3. 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.

  4. Adjunctive Treatment with Asenapine Augments the Escitalopram-Induced Effects on Monoaminergic Outflow and Glutamatergic Neurotransmission in the Medial Prefrontal Cortex of the Rat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Björkholm, Carl; Frånberg, Olivia; Malmerfelt, Anna; Marcus, Monica M.; Konradsson-Geuken, Åsa; Schilström, Björn; Jardemark, Kent

    2015-01-01

    Background: Substantial clinical data support the addition of low doses of atypical antipsychotic drugs to selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) to rapidly enhance the antidepressant effect in treatment-resistant depression. Preclinical studies suggest that this effect is at least partly explained by an increased catecholamine outflow in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). Methods: In the present study we used in vivo microdialysis in freely moving rats and in vitro intracellular recordings of pyramidal cells of the rat mPFC to investigate the effects of adding the novel atypical antipsychotic drug asenapine to the SSRI escitalopram with regards to monoamine outflow in the mPFC and dopamine outflow in nucleus accumbens as well as glutamatergic transmission in the mPFC. Results: The present study shows that addition of low doses (0.05 and 0.1 mg/kg) of asenapine to escitalopram (5 mg/kg) markedly enhances dopamine, noradrenaline, and serotonin release in the rat mPFC as well as dopamine release in the nucleus accumbens. Moreover, this drug combination facilitated both N-methyl-d-Aspartate (NMDA)– and α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid (AMPA)–induced currents as well as electrically evoked excitatory postsynaptic potentials in pyramidal cells of the rat mPFC. Conclusions: Our results support the notion that the augmentation of SSRIs by atypical antipsychotic drugs in treatment-resistant depression may, at least in part, be related to enhanced catecholamine output in the prefrontal cortex and that asenapine may be clinically used to achieve this end. In particular, the subsequent activation of the D1 receptor may be of importance for the augmented antidepressant effect, as this mechanism facilitated both NMDA and AMPA receptor-mediated transmission in the mPFC. Our novel observation that the drug combination, like ketamine, facilitates glutamatergic transmission in the mPFC may contribute to explain the rapid and potent antidepressant

  5. Synaptic vesicle distribution by conveyor belt.

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    Moughamian, Armen J; Holzbaur, Erika L F

    2012-03-02

    The equal distribution of synaptic vesicles among synapses along the axon is critical for robust neurotransmission. Wong et al. show that the continuous circulation of synaptic vesicles throughout the axon driven by molecular motors ultimately yields this even distribution. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Spontaneous Vesicle Recycling in the Synaptic Bouton

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    Sven eTruckenbrodt

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The trigger for synaptic vesicle exocytosis is Ca2+, which enters the synaptic bouton following action potential stimulation. However, spontaneous release of neurotransmitter also occurs in the absence of stimulation in virtually all synaptic boutons. It has long been thought that this represents exocytosis driven by fluctuations in local Ca2+ levels. The vesicles responding to these fluctuations are thought to be the same ones that release upon stimulation, albeit potentially triggered by different Ca2+ sensors. This view has been challenged by several recent works, which have suggested that spontaneous release is driven by a separate pool of synaptic vesicles. Numerous articles appeared during the last few years in support of each of these hypotheses, and it has been challenging to bring them into accord. We speculate here on the origins of this controversy, and propose a solution that is related to developmental effects. Constitutive membrane traffic, needed for the biogenesis of vesicles and synapses, is responsible for high levels of spontaneous membrane fusion in young neurons, probably independent of Ca2+. The vesicles releasing spontaneously in such neurons are not related to other synaptic vesicle pools and may represent constitutively releasing vesicles (CRVs rather than bona fide synaptic vesicles. In mature neurons, constitutive traffic is much dampened, and the few remaining spontaneous release events probably represent bona fide spontaneously releasing synaptic vesicles (SRSVs responding to Ca2+ fluctuations, along with a handful of CRVs that participate in synaptic vesicle turnover.

  7. Active hippocampal networks undergo spontaneous synaptic modification.

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    Masako Tsukamoto-Yasui

    Full Text Available The brain is self-writable; as the brain voluntarily adapts itself to a changing environment, the neural circuitry rearranges its functional connectivity by referring to its own activity. How the internal activity modifies synaptic weights is largely unknown, however. Here we report that spontaneous activity causes complex reorganization of synaptic connectivity without any external (or artificial stimuli. Under physiologically relevant ionic conditions, CA3 pyramidal cells in hippocampal slices displayed spontaneous spikes with bistable slow oscillations of membrane potential, alternating between the so-called UP and DOWN states. The generation of slow oscillations did not require fast synaptic transmission, but their patterns were coordinated by local circuit activity. In the course of generating spontaneous activity, individual neurons acquired bidirectional long-lasting synaptic modification. The spontaneous synaptic plasticity depended on a rise in intracellular calcium concentrations of postsynaptic cells, but not on NMDA receptor activity. The direction and amount of the plasticity varied depending on slow oscillation patterns and synapse locations, and thus, they were diverse in a network. Once this global synaptic refinement occurred, the same neurons now displayed different patterns of spontaneous activity, which in turn exhibited different levels of synaptic plasticity. Thus, active networks continuously update their internal states through ongoing synaptic plasticity. With computational simulations, we suggest that with this slow oscillation-induced plasticity, a recurrent network converges on a more specific state, compared to that with spike timing-dependent plasticity alone.

  8. The backbone of the post-synaptic density originated in a unicellular ancestor of choanoflagellates and metazoans

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    Manuel Michaël

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Comparative genomics of the early diverging metazoan lineages and of their unicellular sister-groups opens new window to reconstructing the genetic changes which preceded or accompanied the evolution of multicellular body plans. A recent analysis found that the genome of the nerve-less sponges encodes the homologues of most vertebrate post-synaptic proteins. In vertebrate excitatory synapses, these proteins assemble to form the post-synaptic density, a complex molecular platform linking membrane receptors, components of their signalling pathways, and the cytoskeleton. Newly available genomes from Monosiga brevicollis (a member of Choanoflagellata, the closest unicellular relatives of animals and Trichoplax adhaerens (a member of Placozoa: besides sponges, the only nerve-less metazoans offer an opportunity to refine our understanding of post-synaptic protein evolution. Results Searches for orthologous proteins and reconstruction of gene gains/losses based on the taxon phylogeny indicate that post-synaptic proteins originated in two main steps. The backbone scaffold proteins (Shank, Homer, DLG and some of their partners were acquired in a unicellular ancestor of choanoflagellates and metazoans. A substantial additional set appeared in an exclusive ancestor of the Metazoa. The placozoan genome contains most post-synaptic genes but lacks some of them. Notably, the master-scaffold protein Shank might have been lost secondarily in the placozoan lineage. Conclusions The time of origination of most post-synaptic proteins was not concomitant with the acquisition of synapses or neural-like cells. The backbone of the scaffold emerged in a unicellular context and was probably not involved in cell-cell communication. Based on the reconstructed protein composition and potential interactions, its ancestral function could have been to link calcium signalling and cytoskeleton regulation. The complex later became integrated into the evolving

  9. Effects of 17beta-estradiol on glutamate synaptic transmission and neuronal excitability in the rat medial vestibular nuclei.

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    Grassi, S; Frondaroli, A; Scarduzio, M; Dutia, M B; Dieni, C; Pettorossi, V E

    2010-02-17

    We investigated the effects of the neurosteroid 17beta-estradiol (E(2)) on the evoked and spontaneous activity of rat medial vestibular nucleus (MVN) neurons in brainstem slices. E(2) enhances the synaptic response to vestibular nerve stimulation in type B neurons and depresses the spontaneous discharge in both type A and B neurons. The amplitude of the field potential, as well as the excitatory post-synaptic potential (EPSP) and current (EPSC), in type B neurons, are enhanced by E(2). Both effects are long-term phenomena since they outlast the drug washout. The enhancement of synaptic response is mainly due to facilitation of glutamate release mediated by pre-synaptic N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs), since the reduction of paired pulse ratio (PPR) and the increase of miniature EPSC frequency after E(2) are abolished under D-(-)-2-amino-5-phosphonopentanoic acid (AP-5). E(2) also facilitates post-synaptic NMDARs, but it does not affect directly alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptors (AMPARs) and group I-metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs-I). In contrast, the depression of the spontaneous discharge of type A and type B neurons appears to depend on E(2) modulation of intrinsic ion conductances, as the effect remains after blockade of glutamate, GABA and glycine receptors (GlyRs). The net effect of E(2) is to enhance the signal-to-noise ratio of the synaptic response in type B neurons, relative to resting activity of all MVN neurons. These findings provide evidence for a novel potential mechanism to modulate the responsiveness of vestibular neurons to afferent inputs, and so regulate vestibular function in vivo.

  10. Criticality predicts maximum irregularity in recurrent networks of excitatory nodes.

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    Yahya Karimipanah

    Full Text Available A rigorous understanding of brain dynamics and function requires a conceptual bridge between multiple levels of organization, including neural spiking and network-level population activity. Mounting evidence suggests that neural networks of cerebral cortex operate at a critical regime, which is defined as a transition point between two phases of short lasting and chaotic activity. However, despite the fact that criticality brings about certain functional advantages for information processing, its supporting evidence is still far from conclusive, as it has been mostly based on power law scaling of size and durations of cascades of activity. Moreover, to what degree such hypothesis could explain some fundamental features of neural activity is still largely unknown. One of the most prevalent features of cortical activity in vivo is known to be spike irregularity of spike trains, which is measured in terms of the coefficient of variation (CV larger than one. Here, using a minimal computational model of excitatory nodes, we show that irregular spiking (CV > 1 naturally emerges in a recurrent network operating at criticality. More importantly, we show that even at the presence of other sources of spike irregularity, being at criticality maximizes the mean coefficient of variation of neurons, thereby maximizing their spike irregularity. Furthermore, we also show that such a maximized irregularity results in maximum correlation between neuronal firing rates and their corresponding spike irregularity (measured in terms of CV. On the one hand, using a model in the universality class of directed percolation, we propose new hallmarks of criticality at single-unit level, which could be applicable to any network of excitable nodes. On the other hand, given the controversy of the neural criticality hypothesis, we discuss the limitation of this approach to neural systems and to what degree they support the criticality hypothesis in real neural networks. Finally

  11. Synaptic function is modulated by LRRK2 and glutamate release is increased in cortical neurons of G2019S LRRK2 knock-in mice.

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    Beccano-Kelly, Dayne A; Kuhlmann, Naila; Tatarnikov, Igor; Volta, Mattia; Munsie, Lise N; Chou, Patrick; Cao, Li-Ping; Han, Heather; Tapia, Lucia; Farrer, Matthew J; Milnerwood, Austen J

    2014-01-01

    Mutations in Leucine-Rich Repeat Kinase-2 (LRRK2) result in familial Parkinson's disease and the G2019S mutation alone accounts for up to 30% in some ethnicities. Despite this, the function of LRRK2 is largely undetermined although evidence suggests roles in phosphorylation, protein interactions, autophagy and endocytosis. Emerging reports link loss of LRRK2 to altered synaptic transmission, but the effects of the G2019S mutation upon synaptic release in mammalian neurons are unknown. To assess wild type and mutant LRRK2 in established neuronal networks, we conducted immunocytochemical, electrophysiological and biochemical characterization of >3 week old cortical cultures of LRRK2 knock-out, wild-type overexpressing and G2019S knock-in mice. Synaptic release and synapse numbers were grossly normal in LRRK2 knock-out cells, but discretely reduced glutamatergic activity and reduced synaptic protein levels were observed. Conversely, synapse density was modestly but significantly increased in wild-type LRRK2 overexpressing cultures although event frequency was not. In knock-in cultures, glutamate release was markedly elevated, in the absence of any change to synapse density, indicating that physiological levels of G2019S LRRK2 elevate probability of release. Several pre-synaptic regulatory proteins shown by others to interact with LRRK2 were expressed at normal levels in knock-in cultures; however, synapsin 1 phosphorylation was significantly reduced. Thus, perturbations to the pre-synaptic release machinery and elevated synaptic transmission are early neuronal effects of LRRK2 G2019S. Furthermore, the comparison of knock-in and overexpressing cultures suggests that one copy of the G2019S mutation has a more pronounced effect than an ~3-fold increase in LRRK2 protein. Mutant-induced increases in transmission may convey additional stressors to neuronal physiology that may eventually contribute to the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease.

  12. Role for astroglial α1-adrenoreceptors in gliotransmission and control of synaptic plasticity in the neocortex

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    Yuriy ePankratov

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Communication between neuronal and glial cells is thought to be very important for many brain functions. Acting via release of gliotransmitters, astrocytes can modulate synaptic strength. The mechanisms underlying gliotransmission remain uncertain with exocytosis being the most intriguing and debated pathway.We demonstrate that astroglial α1-adrenoreceptors are very sensitive to noradrenaline and make a significant contribution to intracellular Ca2+-signalling in layer 2/3 neocortical astrocytes. We also show that astroglial α1-adrenoreceptors are prone to desensitization upon prolonged exposure to noradrenaline.We show that within neocortical slices, α-1adrenoreceptors can activate vesicular release of ATP and D-serine from cortical astrocytes which initiate a burst of ATP receptor-mediated currents in adjacent pyramidal neurons. These purinergic currents can be inhibited by intracellular perfusion of astrocytes with Tetanus Toxin light chain, verifying their origin via astroglial exocytosis.We show that α1 adrenoreceptor-activated release of gliotransmitters is important for the induction of synaptic plasticity in the neocortex:long-term potentiation (LTP of neocortical excitatory synaptic potentials can be abolished by the selective α1-adrenoreceptor antagonist terazosin. We show that weak sub-threshold theta-burst stimulation can induce LTP when astrocytes are additionally activated by 1 μM noradrenaline. This facilitation is dependent on the activation of neuronal ATP receptors and is abolished in neocortical slices from dn-SNARE mice which have impaired glial exocytosis. Importantly, facilitation of LTP by noradrenaline can be significantly reduced by perfusion of individual astrocytes with Tetanus Toxin. Our results strongly support the physiological importance of astroglial adrenergic signalling and exocytosis of gliotransmitters for modulation of synaptic transmission and plasticity .

  13. Age-related decreased inhibitory vs. excitatory gene expression in the adult autistic brain

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van de Lagemaat, Louie N; Nijhof, Bonnie; Bosch, Daniëlle G M; Kohansal-Nodehi, Mahdokht; Keerthikumar, Shivakumar; Heimel, J.A.

    2014-01-01

    Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are neurodevelopmental disorders characterized by impaired social interaction and communication, and restricted behavior and interests. A disruption in the balance of excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmission has been hypothesized to underlie these disorders. Here

  14. Degree of synchronization modulated by inhibitory neurons in clustered excitatory-inhibitory recurrent networks

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    Li, Huiyan; Sun, Xiaojuan; Xiao, Jinghua

    2018-01-01

    An excitatory-inhibitory recurrent neuronal network is established to numerically study the effect of inhibitory neurons on the synchronization degree of neuronal systems. The obtained results show that, with the number of inhibitory neurons and the coupling strength from an inhibitory neuron to an excitatory neuron increasing, inhibitory neurons can not only reduce the synchronization degree when the synchronization degree of the excitatory population is initially higher, but also enhance it when it is initially lower. Meanwhile, inhibitory neurons could also help the neuronal networks to maintain moderate synchronized states. In this paper, we call this effect as modulation effect of inhibitory neurons. With the obtained results, it is further revealed that the ratio of excitatory neurons to inhibitory neurons being nearly 4 : 1 is an economic and affordable choice for inhibitory neurons to realize this modulation effect.

  15. Postnatal Ablation of Synaptic Retinoic Acid Signaling Impairs Cortical Information Processing and Sensory Discrimination in Mice.

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    Park, Esther; Tjia, Michelle; Zuo, Yi; Chen, Lu

    2018-06-06

    Retinoic acid (RA) and its receptors (RARs) are well established essential transcriptional regulators during embryonic development. Recent findings in cultured neurons identified an independent and critical post-transcriptional role of RA and RARα in the homeostatic regulation of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission in mature neurons. However, the functional relevance of synaptic RA signaling in vivo has not been established. Here, using somatosensory cortex as a model system and the RARα conditional knock-out mouse as a tool, we applied multiple genetic manipulations to delete RARα postnatally in specific populations of cortical neurons, and asked whether synaptic RA signaling observed in cultured neurons is involved in cortical information processing in vivo Indeed, conditional ablation of RARα in mice via a CaMKIIα-Cre or a layer 5-Cre driver line or via somatosensory cortex-specific viral expression of Cre-recombinase impaired whisker-dependent texture discrimination, suggesting a critical requirement of RARα expression in L5 pyramidal neurons of somatosensory cortex for normal tactile sensory processing. Transcranial two-photon imaging revealed a significant increase in dendritic spine elimination on apical dendrites of somatosensory cortical layer 5 pyramidal neurons in these mice. Interestingly, the enhancement of spine elimination is whisker experience-dependent as whisker trimming rescued the spine elimination phenotype. Additionally, experiencing an enriched environment improved texture discrimination in RARα-deficient mice and reduced excessive spine pruning. Thus, RA signaling is essential for normal experience-dependent cortical circuit remodeling and sensory processing. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The importance of synaptic RA signaling has been demonstrated in in vitro studies. However, whether RA signaling mediated by RARα contributes to neural circuit functions in vivo remains largely unknown. In this study, using a RARα conditional

  16. Reward memory relieves anxiety-related behavior through synaptic strengthening and protein kinase C in dentate gyrus.

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    Lei, Zhuofan; Liu, Bei; Wang, Jin-Hui

    2016-04-01

    Anxiety disorders are presumably associated with negative memory. Psychological therapies are widely used to treat this mental deficit in human beings based on the view that positive memory competes with negative memory and relieves anxiety status. Cellular and molecular processes underlying psychological therapies remain elusive. Therefore, we have investigated its mechanisms based on a mouse model in which food reward at one open-arm of the elevated plus-maze was used for training mice to form reward memory and challenge the open arms. Mice with the reward training showed increased entries and stay time in reward open-arm versus neutral open-arm as well as in open-arms versus closed-arms. Accompanying with reward memory formation and anxiety relief, glutamatergic synaptic transmission in dentate gyrus in vivo and dendritic spines in granule cells became upregulated. This synaptic up-regulation was accompanied by the expression of more protein kinase C (PKC) in the dendritic spines. The inhibition of PKC by chelerythrine impaired the formation of reward memory, the relief of anxiety-related behavior and the up-regulation of glutamate synapses. Our results suggest that reward-induced positive memory relieves mouse anxiety-related behavior by strengthening synaptic efficacy and PKC in the hippocampus, which imply the underlying cellular and molecular processes involved in the beneficial effects of psychological therapies treating anxiety disorders. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  17. The BDNF val-66-met Polymorphism Affects Neuronal Morphology and Synaptic Transmission in Cultured Hippocampal Neurons from Rett Syndrome Mice

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    Xin Xu

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (Bdnf has been implicated in several neurological disorders including Rett syndrome (RTT, an X-linked neurodevelopmental disorder caused by loss-of-function mutations in the transcriptional modulator methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2. The human BDNF gene has a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP—a methionine (met substitution for valine (val at codon 66—that affects BDNF’s trafficking and activity-dependent release and results in cognitive dysfunction. Humans that are carriers of the met-BDNF allele have subclinical memory deficits and reduced hippocampal volume and activation. It is still unclear whether this BDNF SNP affects the clinical outcome of RTT individuals. To evaluate whether this BDNF SNP contributes to RTT pathophysiology, we examined the consequences of expression of either val-BDNF or met-BDNF on dendrite and dendritic spine morphology, and synaptic function in cultured hippocampal neurons from wildtype (WT and Mecp2 knockout (KO mice. Our findings revealed that met-BDNF does not increase dendritic growth and branching, dendritic spine density and individual spine volume, and the number of excitatory synapses in WT neurons, as val-BDNF does. Furthermore, met-BDNF reduces dendritic complexity, dendritic spine volume and quantal excitatory synaptic transmission in Mecp2 KO neurons. These results suggest that the val-BDNF variant contributes to RTT pathophysiology, and that BDNF-based therapies should take into consideration the BDNF genotype of the RTT individuals.

  18. Neuromodulation, development and synaptic plasticity.

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    Foehring, R C; Lorenzon, N M

    1999-03-01

    We discuss parallels in the mechanisms underlying use-dependent synaptic plasticity during development and long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) in neocortical synapses. Neuromodulators, such as norepinephrine, serotonin, and acetylcholine have also been implicated in regulating both developmental plasticity and LTP/LTD. There are many potential levels of interaction between neuromodulators and plasticity. Ion channels are substrates for modulation in many cell types. We discuss examples of modulation of voltage-gated Ca2+ channels and Ca(2+)-dependent K+ channels and the consequences for neocortical pyramidal cell firing behaviour. At the time when developmental plasticity is most evident in rat cortex, the substrate for modulation is changing as the densities and relative proportions of various ion channels types are altered during ontogeny. We discuss examples of changes in K+ and Ca2+ channels and the consequence for modulation of neuronal activity.

  19. Estimation of Synaptic Conductances in Presence of Nonlinear Effects Caused by Subthreshold Ionic Currents

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    Catalina Vich

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Subthreshold fluctuations in neuronal membrane potential traces contain nonlinear components, and employing nonlinear models might improve the statistical inference. We propose a new strategy to estimate synaptic conductances, which has been tested using in silico data and applied to in vivo recordings. The model is constructed to capture the nonlinearities caused by subthreshold activated currents, and the estimation procedure can discern between excitatory and inhibitory conductances using only one membrane potential trace. More precisely, we perform second order approximations of biophysical models to capture the subthreshold nonlinearities, resulting in quadratic integrate-and-fire models, and apply approximate maximum likelihood estimation where we only suppose that conductances are stationary in a 50–100 ms time window. The results show an improvement compared to existent procedures for the models tested here.

  20. Human-Specific Cortical Synaptic Connections and Their Plasticity: Is That What Makes Us Human?

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    Joana Lourenço

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available One outstanding difference between Homo sapiens and other mammals is the ability to perform highly complex cognitive tasks and behaviors, such as language, abstract thinking, and cultural diversity. How is this accomplished? According to one prominent theory, cognitive complexity is proportional to the repetition of specific computational modules over a large surface expansion of the cerebral cortex (neocortex. However, the human neocortex was shown to also possess unique features at the cellular and synaptic levels, raising the possibility that expanding the computational module is not the only mechanism underlying complex thinking. In a study published in PLOS Biology, Szegedi and colleagues analyzed a specific cortical circuit from live postoperative human tissue, showing that human-specific, very powerful excitatory connections between principal pyramidal neurons and inhibitory neurons are highly plastic. This suggests that exclusive plasticity of specific microcircuits might be considered among the mechanisms endowing the human neocortex with the ability to perform highly complex cognitive tasks.