Sample records for somatosensory axon projections

  1. Neural cell adhesion molecule, NCAM, regulates thalamocortical axon pathfinding and the organization of the cortical somatosensory representation in mouse (United States)

    Enriquez-Barreto, Lilian; Palazzetti, Cecilia; Brennaman, Leann H.; Maness, Patricia F.; Fairén, Alfonso


    To study the potential role of neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM) in the development of thalamocortical (TC) axon topography, wild type, and NCAM null mutant mice were analyzed for NCAM expression, projection, and targeting of TC afferents within the somatosensory area of the neocortex. Here we report that NCAM and its α-2,8-linked polysialic acid (PSA) are expressed in developing TC axons during projection to the neocortex. Pathfinding of TC axons in wild type and null mutant mice was mapped using anterograde DiI labeling. At embryonic day E16.5, null mutant mice displayed misguided TC axons in the dorsal telencephalon, but not in the ventral telencephalon, an intermediate target that initially sorts TC axons toward correct neocortical areas. During the early postnatal period, rostrolateral TC axons within the internal capsule along the ventral telencephalon adopted distorted trajectories in the ventral telencephalon and failed to reach the neocortex in NCAM null mutant animals. NCAM null mutants showed abnormal segregation of layer IV barrels in a restricted portion of the somatosensory cortex. As shown by Nissl and cytochrome oxidase staining, barrels of the anterolateral barrel subfield (ALBSF) and the most distal barrels of the posteromedial barrel subfield (PMBSF) did not segregate properly in null mutant mice. These results indicate a novel role for NCAM in axonal pathfinding and topographic sorting of TC axons, which may be important for the function of specific territories of sensory representation in the somatosensory cortex. PMID:22723769

  2. Modality-Based Organization of Ascending Somatosensory Axons in the Direct Dorsal Column Pathway (United States)

    Niu, Jingwen; Ding, Long; Li, Jian J.; Kim, Hyukmin; Liu, Jiakun; Li, Haipeng; Moberly, Andrew; Badea, Tudor C.; Duncan, Ian D.; Son, Young-Jin; Scherer, Steven S.


    The long-standing doctrine regarding the functional organization of the direct dorsal column (DDC) pathway is the “somatotopic map” model, which suggests that somatosensory afferents are primarily organized by receptive field instead of modality. Using modality-specific genetic tracing, here we show that ascending mechanosensory and proprioceptive axons, two main types of the DDC afferents, are largely segregated into a medial–lateral pattern in the mouse dorsal column and medulla. In addition, we found that this modality-based organization is likely to be conserved in other mammalian species, including human. Furthermore, we identified key morphological differences between these two types of afferents, which explains how modality segregation is formed and why a rough “somatotopic map” was previously detected. Collectively, our results establish a new functional organization model for the mammalian direct dorsal column pathway and provide insight into how somatotopic and modality-based organization coexist in the central somatosensory pathway. PMID:24198362

  3. Projections of Somatosensory Cortex and Frontal Eye Fields onto Incertotectal Neurons in the Cat (United States)

    Perkins, Eddie; Warren, Susan; Lin, Rick C.-S.; May, Paul J.


    The goal of this study was to determine whether the input-output characteristics of the zona incerta (ZI) are appropriate for it to serve as a conduit for cortical control over saccade-related activity in the superior colliculus. The study utilized the neuronal tracers wheat germ agglutinin-horseradish peroxidase (WGA-HRP) and biotinylated dextran amine (BDA) in the cat. Injections of WGA-HRP into primary somatosensory cortex (SI) revealed sparse, widespread nontopographic projections throughout ZI. In addition, region-specific areas of more intense termination were present in ventral ZI, although strict topography was not observed. In comparison, the frontal eye fields (FEF) also projected sparsely throughout ZI, but terminated more heavily, medially, along the border between the two sublaminae. Furthermore, retrogradely labeled incertocortical neurons were observed in both experiments. The relationship of these two cortical projections to incertotectal cells was also directly examined by retrogradely labeling incertotectal cells with WGA-HRP in animals that had also received cortical BDA injections. Labeled axonal arbors from both SI and FEF had thin, sparsely branched axons with numerous en passant boutons. They formed numerous close associations with the somata and dendrites of WGA-HRP-labeled incertotectal cells. In summary, these results indicate that both sensory and motor cortical inputs to ZI display similar morphologies and distributions. In addition, both display close associations with incertotectal cells, suggesting direct synaptic contact. From these data, we conclude that inputs from somatosensory and FEF cortex both play a role in controlling gaze-related activity in the superior colliculus by way of the inhibitory incertotectal projection. PMID:17083121

  4. Cortical compression rapidly trimmed transcallosal projections and altered axonal anterograde transport machinery. (United States)

    Chen, Li-Jin; Wang, Yueh-Jan; Tseng, Guo-Fang


    Trauma and tumor compressing the brain distort underlying cortical neurons. Compressed cortical neurons remodel their dendrites instantly. The effects on axons however remain unclear. Using a rat epidural bead implantation model, we studied the effects of unilateral somatosensory cortical compression on its transcallosal projection and the reversibility of the changes following decompression. Compression reduced the density, branching profuseness and boutons of the projection axons in the contralateral homotopic cortex 1week and 1month post-compression. Projection fiber density was higher 1-month than 1-week post-compression, suggesting adaptive temporal changes. Compression reduced contralateral cortical synaptophysin, vesicular glutamate transporter 1 (VGLUT1) and postsynaptic density protein-95 (PSD95) expressions in a week and the first two marker proteins further by 1month. βIII-tubulin and kinesin light chain (KLC) expressions in the corpus callosum (CC) where transcallosal axons traveled were also decreased. Kinesin heavy chain (KHC) level in CC was temporarily increased 1week after compression. Decompression increased transcallosal axon density and branching profuseness to higher than sham while bouton density returned to sham levels. This was accompanied by restoration of synaptophysin, VGLUT1 and PSD95 expressions in the contralateral cortex of the 1-week, but not the 1-month, compression rats. Decompression restored βIII-tubulin, but not KLC and KHC expressions in CC. However, KLC and KHC expressions in the cell bodies of the layer II/III pyramidal neurons partially recovered. Our results show cerebral compression compromised cortical axonal outputs and reduced transcallosal projection. Some of these changes did not recover in long-term decompression. Copyright © 2017 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Subtypes of GABAergic neurons project axons in the neocortex

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    Shigeyoshi Higo


    Full Text Available γ-aminobutyric acid (GABAergic neurons in the neocortex have been regarded as interneurons and speculated to modulate the activity of neurons locally. Recently, however, several experiments revealed that neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS-positive GABAergic neurons project cortico-cortically with long axons. In this study, we illustrate Golgi-like images of the nNOS-positive GABAergic neurons using a nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate diaphorase (NADPH-d reaction and follow the emanating axon branches in cat brain sections. These axon branches projected cortico-cortically with other non-labeled arcuate fibers, contra-laterally via the corpus callosum and anterior commissure. The labeled fibers were not limited to the neocortex but found also in the fimbria of the hippocampus. In order to have additional information on these GABAergic neuron projections, we investigated green fluorescent protein (GFP-labeled GABAergic neurons in GAD67-Cre knock-in / GFP Cre-reporter mice. GFP-labeled axons emanate densely, especially in the fimbria, a small number in the anterior commissure, and very sparsely in the corpus callosum. These two different approaches confirm that not only nNOS-positive GABAergic neurons but also other subtypes of GABAergic neurons project long axons in the cerebral cortex and are in a position to be involved in information processing.

  6. Cited2 Regulates Neocortical Layer II/III Generation and Somatosensory Callosal Projection Neuron Development and Connectivity. (United States)

    Fame, Ryann M; MacDonald, Jessica L; Dunwoodie, Sally L; Takahashi, Emi; Macklis, Jeffrey D


    The neocortex contains hundreds to thousands of distinct subtypes of precisely connected neurons, allowing it to perform remarkably complex tasks of high-level cognition. Callosal projection neurons (CPN) connect the cerebral hemispheres via the corpus callosum, integrating cortical information and playing key roles in associative cognition. CPN are a strikingly diverse set of neuronal subpopulations, and development of this diversity requires precise control by a complex, interactive set of molecular effectors. We have found that the transcriptional coregulator Cited2 regulates and refines two stages of CPN development. Cited2 is expressed broadly by progenitors in the embryonic day 15.5 subventricular zone, during the peak of superficial layer CPN birth, with a progressive postmitotic refinement in expression, becoming restricted to CPN of the somatosensory cortex postnatally. We generated progenitor-stage and postmitotic forebrain-specific Cited2 conditional knock-out mice, using the Emx1-Cre and NEX-Cre mouse lines, respectively. We demonstrate that Cited2 functions in progenitors, but is not necessary postmitotically, to regulate both (1) broad generation of layer II/III CPN and (2) acquisition of precise area-specific molecular identity and axonal/dendritic connectivity of somatosensory CPN. This novel CPN subtype-specific and area-specific control from progenitor action of Cited2 adds yet another layer of complexity to the multistage developmental regulation of neocortical development. This study identifies Cited2 as a novel subtype-specific and area-specific control over development of distinct subpopulations within the broad population of callosal projection neurons (CPN), whose axons connect the two cerebral hemispheres via the corpus callosum (CC). Currently, how the remarkable diversity of CPN subtypes is specified, and how they differentiate to form highly precise and specific circuits, are largely unknown. We found that Cited2 functions within

  7. Sodium Channel Nav1.8 Underlies TTX-Resistant Axonal Action Potential Conduction in Somatosensory C-Fibers of Distal Cutaneous Nerves. (United States)

    Klein, Amanda H; Vyshnevska, Alina; Hartke, Timothy V; De Col, Roberto; Mankowski, Joseph L; Turnquist, Brian; Bosmans, Frank; Reeh, Peter W; Schmelz, Martin; Carr, Richard W; Ringkamp, Matthias


    Voltage-gated sodium (Na V ) channels are responsible for the initiation and conduction of action potentials within primary afferents. The nine Na V channel isoforms recognized in mammals are often functionally divided into tetrodotoxin (TTX)-sensitive (TTX-s) channels (Na V 1.1-Na V 1.4, Na V 1.6-Na V 1.7) that are blocked by nanomolar concentrations and TTX-resistant (TTX-r) channels (Na V 1.8 and Na V 1.9) inhibited by millimolar concentrations, with Na V 1.5 having an intermediate toxin sensitivity. For small-diameter primary afferent neurons, it is unclear to what extent different Na V channel isoforms are distributed along the peripheral and central branches of their bifurcated axons. To determine the relative contribution of TTX-s and TTX-r channels to action potential conduction in different axonal compartments, we investigated the effects of TTX on C-fiber-mediated compound action potentials (C-CAPs) of proximal and distal peripheral nerve segments and dorsal roots from mice and pigtail monkeys ( Macaca nemestrina ). In the dorsal roots and proximal peripheral nerves of mice and nonhuman primates, TTX reduced the C-CAP amplitude to 16% of the baseline. In contrast, >30% of the C-CAP was resistant to TTX in distal peripheral branches of monkeys and WT and Na V 1.9 -/- mice. In nerves from Na V 1.8 -/- mice, TTX-r C-CAPs could not be detected. These data indicate that Na V 1.8 is the primary isoform underlying TTX-r conduction in distal axons of somatosensory C-fibers. Furthermore, there is a differential spatial distribution of Na V 1.8 within C-fiber axons, being functionally more prominent in the most distal axons and terminal regions. The enrichment of Na V 1.8 in distal axons may provide a useful target in the treatment of pain of peripheral origin. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT It is unclear whether individual sodium channel isoforms exert differential roles in action potential conduction along the axonal membrane of nociceptive, unmyelinated peripheral nerve

  8. Differential Axonal Projection of Mitral and Tufted Cells in the Mouse Main Olfactory System

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    Shin Nagayama


    Full Text Available In the past decade, much has been elucidated regarding the functional organization of the axonal connection of olfactory sensory neurons to olfactory bulb (OB glomeruli. However, the manner in which projection neurons of the OB process odorant input and send this information to higher brain centers remains unclear. Here, we report long-range, large-scale tracing of the axonal projection patterns of OB neurons using two-photon microscopy. Tracer injection into a single glomerulus demonstrated widely distributed mitral/tufted cell axonal projections on the lateroventral surface of the mouse brain, including the anterior/posterior piriform cortex (PC and olfactory tubercle (OT. We noted two distinct groups of labeled axons: PC-orienting axons and OT-orienting axons. Each group occupied distinct parts of the lateral olfactory tract. PC-orienting axons projected axon collaterals to a wide area of the PC but only a few collaterals to the OT. OT-orienting axons densely projected axon collaterals primarily to the anterolateral OT (alOT. Different colored dye injections into the superficial and deep portions of the OB external plexiform layer revealed that the PC-orienting axon populations originated in presumed mitral cells and the OT-orienting axons in presumed tufted cells. These data suggest that although mitral and tufted cells receive similar odor signals from a shared glomerulus, they process the odor information in different ways and send their output to different higher brain centers via the PC and alOT.

  9. Corticofugal projections induce long-lasting effects on somatosensory responses in the trigeminal complex of the rat

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    Angel eNunez


    Full Text Available The sensory information flow at subcortical relay stations is controlled by the action of topographic connections from the neocortex. To determinate the functional properties of the somatosensory corticofugal projections to the principal (Pr5 and caudal spinal (Sp5C trigeminal nuclei, we performed unitary recordings in anesthetized rats. To examine the effect of these cortical projections we used tactile stimulation of the whisker and electrical stimulation of somatosensory cortices. Corticofugal anatomical projections to Pr5 and Sp5C nuclei were detected by using retrograde fluorescent tracers. Neurons projecting exclusively to Pr5 were located in the cingulate cortex while neurons projecting to both Sp5C and Pr5 nuclei were located in the somatosensory and insular cortices (>75% of neurons. Physiological results indicated that primary somatosensory cortex produced a short-lasting facilitating or inhibiting effects (< 5 minutes of tactile responses in Pr5 nucleus through activation of NMDA glutamatergic or GABAA receptors since effects were blocked by iontophoretically application of APV and bicuculline, respectively. In contrast, stimulation of secondary somatosensory cortex did not affect most of the Pr5 neurons; however both cortices inhibited the nociceptive responses in the Sp5C nucleus through activation of glycinergic or GABAA receptors because effects were blocked by iontophoretically application of strychnine and bicuculline, respectively. These and anatomical results demonstrated that the somatosensory cortices projects to Pr5 nucleus to modulate tactile responses by excitatory and inhibitory actions, while projections to the Sp5C nucleus control nociceptive sensory transmission by only inhibitory effects. Thus, somatosensory cortices may modulate innocuous and noxious inputs simultaneously, contributing to the perception of specifically tactile or painful sensations.

  10. Descending projections from the dysgranular zone of rat primary somatosensory cortex processing deep somatic input. (United States)

    Lee, Taehee; Kim, Uhnoh


    In the mammalian somatic system, peripheral inputs from cutaneous and deep receptors ascend via different subcortical channels and terminate in largely separate regions of the primary somatosensory cortex (SI). How these inputs are processed in SI and then projected back to the subcortical relay centers is critical for understanding how SI may regulate somatic information processing in the subcortex. Although it is now relatively well understood how SI cutaneous areas project to the subcortical structures, little is known about the descending projections from SI areas processing deep somatic input. We examined this issue by using the rodent somatic system as a model. In rat SI, deep somatic input is processed mainly in the dysgranular zone (DSZ) enclosed by the cutaneous barrel subfields. By using biotinylated dextran amine (BDA) as anterograde tracer, we characterized the topography of corticostriatal and corticofugal projections arising in the DSZ. The DSZ projections terminate mainly in the lateral subregions of the striatum that are also known as the target of certain SI cutaneous areas. This suggests that SI processing of deep and cutaneous information may be integrated, to a certain degree, in this striatal region. By contrast, at both thalamic and prethalamic levels as far as the spinal cord, descending projections from DSZ terminate in areas largely distinguishable from those that receive input from SI cutaneous areas. These subcortical targets of DSZ include not only the sensory but also motor-related structures, suggesting that SI processing of deep input may engage in regulating somatic and motor information flow between the cortex and periphery. Copyright © 2011 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  11. Retention of retinal axon collateral is responsible for induced ipsilateral retinotectal projections in adult goldfish. (United States)

    Sharma, S C; Tsai, C


    In normal goldfish, optic axons innervate only the contralateral optic tectum. When one eye was enucleated and the optic nerve of the other eye crushed, the regenerating optic axons innervated both optic tecta. We studied the presence of bilaterally projecting retinal ganglion cells by double retrograde cell labeling methods using Nuclear Yellow and True Blue dyes. About 10% of the retinal ganglion cells were double labeled and these cells were found throughout the retina. In addition, HRP application to the ipsilateral tectum revealed retrogradely-labeled retinal ganglion cells of all morphological types. These results suggest that induced ipsilateral projections are formed by regenerating axon collaterals and that all cell types are involved in the generation of normal mirror image typography.

  12. Corticothalamic and corticotectal somatosensory projections from the anterior ectosylvian sulcus (SIV cortex) in neonatal cats: an anatomical demonstration with HRP and 3H-leucine

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    McHaffie, J.G.; Kruger, L.; Clemo, H.R.; Stein, B.E.


    Corticothalamic and corticotectal projections from the anterior ectosylvian sulcus (AES) in neonatal cats were studied with anterograde and retrograde neuroanatomical techniques. When the injection site was relatively restricted to the sulcal walls and fundus of the rostral AES (i.e., the SIV cortex), heavy ipsilateral thalamic label was observed in the medial subdivision of the posterior group, in the suprageniculate nucleus, and in the external medullary lamina. No terminal label was seen in the contralateral thalamus although the contralateral homotopic cortex was heavily labeled. Within the ventrobasal complex (VB), dense axonal label was observed in fascicles that traversed VB, but only light terminal label was observed within VB itself. However, in cases where the tracer spread into adjacent SII, terminal label in VB was pronounced. Similarly, when the injection site extended into auditory cortex, terminal label was observed in the lateral and intermediate subdivisions of the posterior group. Rostral AES injections produced distinct, predominantly ipsilateral, terminal label in the superior colliculus that was distributed in two tiers: a discontinuous band in the stratum griseum intermedium and a more diffuse band in stratum griseum profundum. Caudally, dense terminal label was seen in the intercollicular zone and dorsolateral periaqueductal gray. When the injection site did not include rostral AES, no label was observed in the superior colliculus. Horseradish peroxidase injections into the superior colliculus of neonates produced retrogradely labeled neurons throughout the AES, but none was found on the crown of the gyrus where SII is located. Thus, the neonatal corticotectal somatosensory projection arises exclusively from AES and parallels that found in adults

  13. Hypergravity exposure decreases gamma-aminobutyric acid immunoreactivity in axon terminals contacting pyramidal cells in the rat somatosensory cortex: a quantitative immunocytochemical image analysis (United States)

    D'Amelio, F.; Wu, L. C.; Fox, R. A.; Daunton, N. G.; Corcoran, M. L.; Polyakov, I.


    Quantitative evaluation of gamma-aminobutyric acid immunoreactivity (GABA-IR) in the hindlimb representation of the rat somatosensory cortex after 14 days of exposure to hypergravity (hyper-G) was conducted by using computer-assisted image processing. The area of GABA-IR axosomatic terminals apposed to pyramidal cells of cortical layer V was reduced in rats exposed to hyper-G compared with control rats, which were exposed either to rotation alone or to vivarium conditions. Based on previous immunocytochemical and behavioral studies, we suggest that this reduction is due to changes in sensory feedback information from muscle receptors. Consequently, priorities for muscle recruitment are altered at the cortical level, and a new pattern of muscle activity is thus generated. It is proposed that the reduction observed in GABA-IR of the terminal area around pyramidal neurons is the immunocytochemical expression of changes in the activity of GABAergic cells that participate in reprogramming motor outputs to achieve effective movement control in response to alterations in the afferent information.

  14. Cortical Divergent Projections in Mice Originate from Two Sequentially Generated, Distinct Populations of Excitatory Cortical Neurons with Different Initial Axonal Outgrowth Characteristics. (United States)

    Hatanaka, Yumiko; Namikawa, Tomohiro; Yamauchi, Kenta; Kawaguchi, Yasuo


    Excitatory cortical neurons project to various subcortical and intracortical regions, and exhibit diversity in their axonal connections. Although this diversity may develop from primary axons, how many types of axons initially occur remains unknown. Using a sparse-labeling in utero electroporation method, we investigated the axonal outgrowth of these neurons in mice and correlated the data with axonal projections in adults. Examination of lateral cortex neurons labeled during the main period of cortical neurogenesis (E11.5-E15.5) indicated that axonal outgrowth commonly occurs in the intermediate zone. Conversely, the axonal direction varied; neurons labeled before E12.5 and the earliest cortical plate neurons labeled at E12.5 projected laterally, whereas neurons labeled thereafter projected medially. The expression of Ctip2 and Satb2 and the layer destinations of these neurons support the view that lateral and medial projection neurons are groups of prospective subcortical and callosal projection neurons, respectively. Consistently, birthdating experiments demonstrated that presumptive lateral projection neurons were generated earlier than medial projection neurons, even within the same layer. These results suggest that the divergent axonal connections of excitatory cortical neurons begin from two types of primary axons, which originate from two sequentially generated distinct subpopulations: early-born lateral (subcortical) and later-born medial (callosal) projection neuron groups. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail:

  15. GABAergic Synapses at the Axon Initial Segment of Basolateral Amygdala Projection Neurons Modulate Fear Extinction. (United States)

    Saha, Rinki; Knapp, Stephanie; Chakraborty, Darpan; Horovitz, Omer; Albrecht, Anne; Kriebel, Martin; Kaphzan, Hanoch; Ehrlich, Ingrid; Volkmer, Hansjürgen; Richter-Levin, Gal


    Inhibitory synaptic transmission in the amygdala has a pivotal role in fear learning and its extinction. However, the local circuits formed by GABAergic inhibitory interneurons within the amygdala and their detailed function in shaping these behaviors are not well understood. Here we used lentiviral-mediated knockdown of the cell adhesion molecule neurofascin in the basolateral amygdala (BLA) to specifically remove inhibitory synapses at the axon initial segment (AIS) of BLA projection neurons. Quantitative analysis of GABAergic synapse markers and measurement of miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents in BLA projection neurons after neurofascin knockdown ex vivo confirmed the loss of GABAergic input. We then studied the impact of this manipulation on anxiety-like behavior and auditory cued fear conditioning and its extinction as BLA related behavioral paradigms, as well as on long-term potentiation (LTP) in the ventral subiculum-BLA pathway in vivo. BLA knockdown of neurofascin impaired ventral subiculum-BLA-LTP. While this manipulation did not affect anxiety-like behavior and fear memory acquisition and consolidation, it specifically impaired extinction. Our findings indicate that modification of inhibitory synapses at the AIS of BLA projection neurons is sufficient to selectively impair extinction behavior. A better understanding of the role of distinct GABAergic synapses may provide novel and more specific targets for therapeutic interventions in extinction-based therapies.

  16. Potential Involvement of Draxin in the Axonal Projection of Cranial Nerves, Especially Cranial Nerve X, in the Chick Hindbrain. (United States)

    Zhang, Sanbing; Cui, Huixian; Wang, Lei; Kang, Lin; Huang, Guannan; Du, Juan; Li, Sha; Tanaka, Hideaki; Su, Yuhong


    The appropriate projection of axons within the nervous system is a crucial component of the establishment of neural circuitry. Draxin is a repulsive axon guidance protein. Draxin has important functions in the guidance of three commissures in the central nervous system and in the migration of neural crest cells and dI3 interneurons in the chick spinal cord. Here, we report that the distribution of the draxin protein and the location of 23C10-positive areas have a strong temporal and spatial correlation. The overexpression of draxin, especially transmembrane draxin, caused 23C10-positive axon bundles to misproject in the dorsal hindbrain. In addition, the overexpression of transmembrane draxin caused abnormal formation of the ganglion crest of the IX and X cranial nerves, misprojection of some anti-human natural killer-1 (HNK-1)-stained structures in the dorsal roof of the hindbrain, and a simultaneous reduction in the efferent nerves of some motoneuron axons inside the hindbrain. Our data reveal that draxin might be involved in the fascicular projection of cranial nerves in the hindbrain. © 2016 The Histochemical Society.

  17. DISCO interacting protein 2 determines direction of axon projection under the regulation of c-Jun N-terminal kinase in the Drosophila mushroom body

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    Nitta, Yohei; Sugie, Atsushi


    Precisely controlled axon guidance for complex neuronal wiring is essential for appropriate neuronal function. c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) was found to play a role in axon guidance recently as well as in cell proliferation, protection and apoptosis. In spite of many genetic and molecular studies on these biological processes regulated by JNK, how JNK regulates axon guidance accurately has not been fully explained thus far. To address this question, we use the Drosophila mushroom body (MB) as a model since the α/β axons project in two distinct directions. Here we show that DISCO interacting protein 2 (DIP2) is required for the accurate direction of axonal guidance. DIP2 expression is under the regulation of Basket (Bsk), the Drosophila homologue of JNK. We additionally found that the Bsk/DIP2 pathway is independent from the AP-1 transcriptional factor complex pathway, which is directly activated by Bsk. In conclusion, our findings revealed DIP2 as a novel effector downstream of Bsk modulating the direction of axon projection. - Highlights: • DIP2 is required for accurate direction of axon guidance in Drosophila mushroom body. • DIP2 is a downstream of JNK in the axon guidance of Drosophila mushroom body neuron. • JNK/DIP2 pathway is independent from JNK/AP-1 transcriptional factor complex pathway.

  18. Role of motoneuron-derived neurotrophin 3 in survival and axonal projection of sensory neurons during neural circuit formation. (United States)

    Usui, Noriyoshi; Watanabe, Keisuke; Ono, Katsuhiko; Tomita, Koichi; Tamamaki, Nobuaki; Ikenaka, Kazuhiro; Takebayashi, Hirohide


    Sensory neurons possess the central and peripheral branches and they form unique spinal neural circuits with motoneurons during development. Peripheral branches of sensory axons fasciculate with the motor axons that extend toward the peripheral muscles from the central nervous system (CNS), whereas the central branches of proprioceptive sensory neurons directly innervate motoneurons. Although anatomically well documented, the molecular mechanism underlying sensory-motor interaction during neural circuit formation is not fully understood. To investigate the role of motoneuron on sensory neuron development, we analyzed sensory neuron phenotypes in the dorsal root ganglia (DRG) of Olig2 knockout (KO) mouse embryos, which lack motoneurons. We found an increased number of apoptotic cells in the DRG of Olig2 KO embryos at embryonic day (E) 10.5. Furthermore, abnormal axonal projections of sensory neurons were observed in both the peripheral branches at E10.5 and central branches at E15.5. To understand the motoneuron-derived factor that regulates sensory neuron development, we focused on neurotrophin 3 (Ntf3; NT-3), because Ntf3 and its receptors (Trk) are strongly expressed in motoneurons and sensory neurons, respectively. The significance of motoneuron-derived Ntf3 was analyzed using Ntf3 conditional knockout (cKO) embryos, in which we observed increased apoptosis and abnormal projection of the central branch innervating motoneuron, the phenotypes being apparently comparable with that of Olig2 KO embryos. Taken together, we show that the motoneuron is a functional source of Ntf3 and motoneuron-derived Ntf3 is an essential pre-target neurotrophin for survival and axonal projection of sensory neurons.

  19. Diversity of Cortico-descending Projections

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    Innocenti, Giorgio M; Caminiti, Roberto; Rouiller, Eric M


    The axonal composition of cortical projections originating in premotor, supplementary motor (SMA), primary motor (a4), somatosensory and parietal areas and descending towards the brain stem and spinal cord was characterized in the monkey with histological tract tracing, electron microscopy (EM) a...

  20. Morphometric analysis of feedforward pathways from the primary somatosensory area (S1 of rats

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    A.L. de Sá


    Full Text Available We used biotinylated dextran amine (BDA to anterogradely label individual axons projecting from primary somatosensory cortex (S1 to four different cortical areas in rats. A major goal was to determine whether axon terminals in these target areas shared morphometric similarities based on the shape of individual terminal arbors and the density of two bouton types: en passant (Bp and terminaux (Bt. Evidence from tridimensional reconstructions of isolated axon terminal fragments (n=111 did support a degree of morphological heterogeneity establishing two broad groups of axon terminals. Morphological parameters associated with the complexity of terminal arbors and the proportion of beaded Bp vs stalked Bt were found to differ significantly in these two groups following a discriminant function statistical analysis across axon fragments. Interestingly, both groups occurred in all four target areas, possibly consistent with a commonality of presynaptic processing of tactile information. These findings lay the ground for additional work aiming to investigate synaptic function at the single bouton level and see how this might be associated with emerging properties in postsynaptic targets.

  1. Sim1 is required for the migration and axonal projections of V3 interneurons in the developing mouse spinal cord. (United States)

    Blacklaws, Jake; Deska-Gauthier, Dylan; Jones, Christopher T; Petracca, Yanina L; Liu, Mingwei; Zhang, Han; Fawcett, James P; Glover, Joel C; Lanuza, Guillermo M; Zhang, Ying


    V3 spinal interneurons (INs) are a group of excitatory INs that play a crucial role in producing balanced and stable gaits in vertebrate animals. In the developing mouse spinal cord, V3 INs arise from the most ventral progenitor domain and form anatomically distinctive subpopulations in adult spinal cords. They are marked by the expression of transcription factor Sim1 postmitotically, but the function of Sim1 in V3 development remains unknown. Here, we used Sim1(Cre) ;tdTomato mice to trace the fate of V3 INs in a Sim1 mutant versus control genetic background during development. In Sim1 mutants, V3 INs are produced normally and maintain a similar position and organization as in wild types before E12.5. Further temporal analysis revealed that the V3 INs in the mutants failed to migrate properly to form V3 subgroups along the dorsoventral axis of the spinal cord. At birth, in the Sim1 mutant the number of V3 INs in the ventral subgroup was normal, but they were significantly reduced in the dorsal subgroup with a concomitant increase in the intermediate subgroup. Retrograde labeling at lumbar level revealed that loss of Sim1 led to a reduction in extension of contralateral axon projections both at E14.5 and P0 without affecting ipsilateral axon projections. These results demonstrate that Sim1 is essential for proper migration and the guidance of commissural axons of the spinal V3 INs. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  2. Diversity of Internal Sensory Neuron Axon Projection Patterns Is Controlled by the POU-Domain Protein Pdm3 in Drosophila Larvae. (United States)

    Qian, Cheng Sam; Kaplow, Margarita; Lee, Jennifer K; Grueber, Wesley B


    Internal sensory neurons innervate body organs and provide information about internal state to the CNS to maintain physiological homeostasis. Despite their conservation across species, the anatomy, circuitry, and development of internal sensory systems are still relatively poorly understood. A largely unstudied population of larval Drosophila sensory neurons, termed tracheal dendrite (td) neurons, innervate internal respiratory organs and may serve as a model for understanding the sensing of internal states. Here, we characterize the peripheral anatomy, central axon projection, and diversity of td sensory neurons. We provide evidence for prominent expression of specific gustatory receptor genes in distinct populations of td neurons, suggesting novel chemosensory functions. We identify two anatomically distinct classes of td neurons. The axons of one class project to the subesophageal zone (SEZ) in the brain, whereas the other terminates in the ventral nerve cord (VNC). We identify expression and a developmental role of the POU-homeodomain transcription factor Pdm3 in regulating the axon extension and terminal targeting of SEZ-projecting td neurons. Remarkably, ectopic Pdm3 expression is alone sufficient to switch VNC-targeting axons to SEZ targets, and to induce the formation of putative synapses in these ectopic target zones. Our data thus define distinct classes of td neurons, and identify a molecular factor that contributes to diversification of axon targeting. These results introduce a tractable model to elucidate molecular and circuit mechanisms underlying sensory processing of internal body status and physiological homeostasis. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT How interoceptive sensory circuits develop, including how sensory neurons diversify and target distinct central regions, is still poorly understood, despite the importance of these sensory systems for maintaining physiological homeostasis. Here, we characterize classes of Drosophila internal sensory neurons (td

  3. Morphological Analysis of the Axonal Projections of EGFP-Labeled Esr1-Expressing Neurons in Transgenic Female Medaka. (United States)

    Zempo, Buntaro; Karigo, Tomomi; Kanda, Shinji; Akazome, Yasuhisa; Oka, Yoshitaka


    Some hypothalamic neurons expressing estrogen receptor α (Esr1) are thought to transmit a gonadal estrogen feedback signal to gonadotropin-releasing hormone 1 (GnRH1) neurons, which is the final common pathway for feedback regulation of reproductive functions. Moreover, estrogen-sensitive neurons are suggested to control sexual behaviors in coordination with reproduction. In mammals, hypothalamic estrogen-sensitive neurons release the peptide kisspeptin and regulate GnRH1 neurons. However, a growing body of evidence in nonmammalian species casts doubt on the regulation of GnRH1 neurons by kisspeptin neurons. As a step toward understanding how estrogen regulates neuronal circuits for reproduction and sex behavior in vertebrates in general, we generated a transgenic (Tg) medaka that expresses enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) specifically in esr1-expressing neurons (esr1 neurons) and analyzed their axonal projections. We found that esr1 neurons in the preoptic area (POA) project to the gnrh1 neurons. We also demonstrated by transcriptome and histological analyses that these esr1 neurons are glutamatergic or γ-aminobutyric acidergic (GABAergic) but not kisspeptinergic. We therefore suggest that glutamatergic and GABAergic esr1 neurons in the POA regulate gnrh1 neurons. This hypothesis is consistent with previous studies in mice that found that glutamatergic and GABAergic transmission is critical for estrogen-dependent changes in GnRH1 neuron firing. Thus, we propose that this neuronal circuit may provide an evolutionarily conserved mechanism for regulation of reproduction. In addition, we showed that telencephalic esr1 neurons project to medulla, which may control sexual behavior. Moreover, we found that some POA-esr1 neurons coexpress progesterone receptors. These neurons may form the neuronal circuits that regulate reproduction and sex behavior in response to the serum estrogen/progesterone. Copyright © 2018 Endocrine Society.

  4. The Transcription Factor Orthodenticle Homeobox 2 Influences Axonal Projections and Vulnerability of Midbrain Dopaminergic Neurons (United States)

    Chung, Chee Yeun; Licznerski, Pawel; Alavian, Kambiz N.; Simeone, Antonio; Lin, Zhicheng; Martin, Eden; Vance, Jeffery; Isacson, Ole


    Two adjacent groups of midbrain dopaminergic neurons, A9 (substantia nigra pars compacta) and A10 (ventral tegmental area), have distinct projections and exhibit differential vulnerability in Parkinson's disease. Little is known about transcription factors that influence midbrain dopaminergic subgroup phenotypes or their potential role in disease.…

  5. Light and electron microscopy of contacts between primary afferent fibres and neurones with axons ascending the dorsal columns of the feline spinal cord. (United States)

    Maxwell, D J; Koerber, H R; Bannatyne, B A


    In addition to primary afferent fibres, the dorsal columns of the cat spinal cord contain ascending second-order axons which project to the dorsal column nuclei. The aim of the present study was to obtain morphological evidence that certain primary afferent axons form monosynaptic contacts with cells of origin of this postsynaptic dorsal column pathway. In ten adult cats, neurones with axons ascending the dorsal columns were retrogradely labelled with horseradish peroxidase using a pellet implantation method in the thoracic dorsal columns. In the lumbosacral regions of the same animals, primary afferent fibres were labelled intra-axonally with ionophoretic application of horseradish peroxidase. Tissue containing labelled axons was prepared for light and combined light and electron microscopy. Ultrastructural examination demonstrated that slowly adapting (Type I), hair follicle, Pacinian corpuscle and group Ia muscle spindle afferents formed monosynaptic contacts with labelled cells and light microscopical analysis suggested that they also received monosynaptic input from rapidly adapting (Krause) afferents. This evidence suggests that sensory information from large-diameter cutaneous and muscle spindle afferent fibres is conveyed disynaptically via the postsynaptic dorsal column pathway to the dorsal column nuclei. Some of the input to this pathway is probably modified in the spinal cord as the majority of primary afferent boutons forming monosynaptic contacts were postsynaptic to other axon terminals. The postsynaptic dorsal column system appears to constitute a major somatosensory pathway in the cat.

  6. Ascending Midbrain Dopaminergic Axons Require Descending GAD65 Axon Fascicles for Normal Pathfinding

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    Claudia Marcela Garcia-Peña


    Full Text Available The Nigrostriatal pathway (NSP is formed by dopaminergic axons that project from the ventral midbrain to the dorsolateral striatum as part of the medial forebrain bundle. Previous studies have implicated chemotropic proteins in the formation of the NSP during development but little is known of the role of substrate-anchored signals in this process. We observed in mouse and rat embryos that midbrain dopaminergic axons ascend in close apposition to descending GAD65-positive axon bundles throughout their trajectory to the striatum. To test whether such interaction is important for dopaminergic axon pathfinding, we analyzed transgenic mouse embryos in which the GAD65 axon bundle was reduced by the conditional expression of the diphtheria toxin. In these embryos we observed dopaminergic misprojection into the hypothalamic region and abnormal projection in the striatum. In addition, analysis of Robo1/2 and Slit1/2 knockout embryos revealed that the previously described dopaminergic misprojection in these embryos is accompanied by severe alterations in the GAD65 axon scaffold. Additional studies with cultured dopaminergic neurons and whole embryos suggest that NCAM and Robo proteins are involved in the interaction of GAD65 and dopaminergic axons. These results indicate that the fasciculation between descending GAD65 axon bundles and ascending dopaminergic axons is required for the stereotypical NSP formation during brain development and that known guidance cues may determine this projection indirectly by instructing the pathfinding of the axons that are part of the GAD65 axon scaffold.

  7. Somatosensory abnormalities in knee OA. (United States)

    Wylde, Vikki; Palmer, Shea; Learmonth, Ian D; Dieppe, Paul


    The aim of this study was to use quantitative sensory testing (QST) to explore the range and prevalence of somatosensory abnormalities demonstrated by patients with advanced knee OA. One hundred and seven knee OA patients and 50 age- and sex-matched healthy participants attended a 1-h QST session. Testing was performed on the medial side of the knee and the pain-free forearm. Light-touch thresholds were assessed using von Frey filaments, pressure pain thresholds using a digital pressure algometer, and thermal sensation and pain thresholds using a Thermotest MSA. Significant differences in median threshold values from knee OA patients and healthy participants were identified using Mann-Whitney U-tests. The z-score transformations were used to determine the prevalence of the different somatosensory abnormalities in knee OA patients. Testing identified 70% of knee OA patients as having at least one somatosensory abnormality. Comparison of median threshold values between knee OA patients and healthy participants revealed that patients had localized thermal and tactile hypoaesthesia and pressure hyperalgesia at the osteoarthritic knee. Tactile hypoaesthesia and pressure hyperalgesia were also present at the pain-free forearm. The most prevalent somatosensory abnormalities were tactile hypoaesthesia and pressure hyperalgesia, evident in between 20 and 34% of patients. This study found that OA patients demonstrate an array of somatosensory abnormalities, of which the most prevalent were tactile hypoaesthesia and pressure hyperalgesia. Further research is now needed to establish the clinical implications of these somatosensory abnormalities.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)



    Full Text Available Diabetes mellitus is the most common metabolic disorder affecting majority of population. It is estimated that over 400 million people throughout the world have diabetes. It has progressed to be a pandemic from an epidemic causing morbidity and mortality in the population. Among the many complications of diabetes, diabetic neuropathies contribute majorly to the morbidity associated with the disease. Axonal conduction is affected by elevated levels of protein kinase c causing neuronal ischemia; decreased ce llular myoinositol affecting sodium potassium ATPase pump leads to decreased nerve conduction; Somatosensory E voked P otentials (SSEPs reflect the activity of somatosensory pathways mediated through the dorsal columns of the spinal cord and the specific so matosensory cortex. Recording of Somatosensory Evoked Potentials in diabetics is done to assess the sensory involvement of spinal cord. Presence of SEPs provides clear evidence for axonal continuity and by using different stimulation sites, the rate of reg eneration can be determined. Both onset and peak latencies of all SEP components are prolonged in patients with diabetes. Present study is done to compare somatosensory evoked potentials in diabetics and normal subjects. MATERIALS AND METHOD S: The present study was undertaken at the Upgraded Department of Physiology, Osmania Medical College, Koti, Hyderabad. The study was conducted on subjects, both male and female in the age group of 45 to 55 years, suffering from type II diabetes excluding other neurologi cal disorders. Non - invasive method of estimation of nerve conduction studies using SFEMG/EP — Electromyography or evoked potential system (Nicolet systems — USA using surface electrodes with automated computerized monitor attached with printer is used. RESUL TS : ANOVA showed statistically significant N9 latency (right & left sides. Latencies of all the components of SSEPs were more significant than amplitudes in Diabetic

  9. Meninges-derived cues control axon guidance. (United States)

    Suter, Tracey A C S; DeLoughery, Zachary J; Jaworski, Alexander


    The axons of developing neurons travel long distances along stereotyped pathways under the direction of extracellular cues sensed by the axonal growth cone. Guidance cues are either secreted proteins that diffuse freely or bind the extracellular matrix, or membrane-anchored proteins. Different populations of axons express distinct sets of receptors for guidance cues, which results in differential responses to specific ligands. The full repertoire of axon guidance cues and receptors and the identity of the tissues producing these cues remain to be elucidated. The meninges are connective tissue layers enveloping the vertebrate brain and spinal cord that serve to protect the central nervous system (CNS). The meninges also instruct nervous system development by regulating the generation and migration of neural progenitors, but it has not been determined whether they help guide axons to their targets. Here, we investigate a possible role for the meninges in neuronal wiring. Using mouse neural tissue explants, we show that developing spinal cord meninges produce secreted attractive and repulsive cues that can guide multiple types of axons in vitro. We find that motor and sensory neurons, which project axons across the CNS-peripheral nervous system (PNS) boundary, are attracted by meninges. Conversely, axons of both ipsi- and contralaterally projecting dorsal spinal cord interneurons are repelled by meninges. The responses of these axonal populations to the meninges are consistent with their trajectories relative to meninges in vivo, suggesting that meningeal guidance factors contribute to nervous system wiring and control which axons are able to traverse the CNS-PNS boundary. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Comparison of neurotrophin and repellent sensitivities of early embryonic geniculate and trigeminal axons

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    Rochlin, M William; O'Connor, R.; Giger, Roman J; Verhaagen, J; Farbman, A I


    Geniculate (gustatory) and trigeminal (somatosensory) afferents take different routes to the tongue during rat embryonic development. To learn more about the mechanisms controlling neurite outgrowth and axon guidance, we are studying the roles of diffusible factors. We previously profiled the in

  11. Axonal GABAA receptors. (United States)

    Trigo, Federico F; Marty, Alain; Stell, Brandon M


    Type A GABA receptors (GABA(A)Rs) are well established as the main inhibitory receptors in the mature mammalian forebrain. In recent years, evidence has accumulated showing that GABA(A)Rs are prevalent not only in the somatodendritic compartment of CNS neurons, but also in their axonal compartment. Evidence for axonal GABA(A)Rs includes new immunohistochemical and immunogold data: direct recording from single axonal terminals; and effects of local applications of GABA(A)R modulators on action potential generation, on axonal calcium signalling, and on neurotransmitter release. Strikingly, whereas presynaptic GABA(A)Rs have long been considered inhibitory, the new studies in the mammalian brain mostly indicate an excitatory action. Depending on the neuron that is under study, axonal GABA(A)Rs can be activated by ambient GABA, by GABA spillover, or by an autocrine action, to increase either action potential firing and/or transmitter release. In certain neurons, the excitatory effects of axonal GABA(A)Rs persist into adulthood. Altogether, axonal GABA(A)Rs appear as potent neuronal modulators of the mammalian CNS.

  12. Acute nutritional axonal neuropathy. (United States)

    Hamel, Johanna; Logigian, Eric L


    This study describes clinical, laboratory, and electrodiagnostic features of a severe acute axonal polyneuropathy common to patients with acute nutritional deficiency in the setting of alcoholism, bariatric surgery (BS), or anorexia. Retrospective analysis of clinical, electrodiagnostic, and laboratory data of patients with acute axonal neuropathy. Thirteen patients were identified with a severe, painful, sensory or sensorimotor axonal polyneuropathy that developed over 2-12 weeks with sensory ataxia, areflexia, variable muscle weakness, poor nutritional status, and weight loss, often with prolonged vomiting and normal cerebrospinal fluid protein. Vitamin B6 was low in half and thiamine was low in all patients when obtained before supplementation. Patients improved with weight gain and vitamin supplementation, with motor greater than sensory recovery. We suggest that acute or subacute axonal neuropathy in patients with weight loss or vomiting associated with alcohol abuse, BS, or dietary deficiency is one syndrome, caused by micronutrient deficiencies. Muscle Nerve 57: 33-39, 2018. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  13. Axons take a dive (United States)

    Tong, Cheuk Ka; Cebrián-Silla, Arantxa; Paredes, Mercedes F; Huang, Eric J; García-Verdugo, Jose Manuel; Alvarez-Buylla, Arturo


    In the walls of the lateral ventricles of the adult mammalian brain, neural stem cells (NSCs) and ependymal (E1) cells share the apical surface of the ventricular–subventricular zone (V–SVZ). In a recent article, we show that supraependymal serotonergic (5HT) axons originating from the raphe nuclei in mice form an extensive plexus on the walls of the lateral ventricles where they contact E1 cells and NSCs. Here we further characterize the contacts between 5HT supraependymal axons and E1 cells in mice, and show that suprependymal axons tightly associated to E1 cells are also present in the walls of the human lateral ventricles. These observations raise interesting questions about the function of supraependymal axons in the regulation of E1 cells. PMID:26413556

  14. Zonal organization of the climbing fiber projection to the flocculus and nodulus of the rabbit: A combined axonal tracing and acetylcholinesterase histochemical study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    J. Tan (J.); N.M. Gerrits (N.); R. Nanhoe (R.); J.I. Simpson (John); J. Voogd (Jan)


    textabstractThe localization and termination of olivocerebellar fibers in the flocculus and nodulus of the rabbit were studied with anterograde axonal transport methods [wheatgerm agglutinin-horseradish peroxidase (WGA-HRP) and tritiated leucine] and correlated with the compartments in the white

  15. Fine structure of primary afferent axon terminals projecting from rapidly adapting mechanoreceptors of the toe and foot pads of the cat. (United States)

    Maxwell, D J; Bannatyne, B A; Fyffe, R E; Brown, A G


    Two Pacinian corpuscle afferents and two rapidly adapting afferents from Krause corpuscles were intra-axonally labelled with horseradish peroxidase in the lumbosacral enlargement of the cat's spinal cord. Tissue was prepared for combined light and electron microscopical analysis. Boutons from both classes of afferent had similar ultrastructural appearances. They both formed from one to three synaptic junctions with dendritic shafts and spines and received axo-axonic synapses. In addition, both categories of bouton were seen to be presynaptic to structures interpreted as vesicle-containing dendrites. It is concluded that both types of afferent fibre are subject to presynaptic control and that they synapse with dorsal horn neurones which are possibly interneurones involved in primary afferent depolarization and post-synaptic dorsal column neurones.

  16. Electrophysiology of Axonal Constrictions (United States)

    Johnson, Christopher; Jung, Peter; Brown, Anthony


    Axons of myelinated neurons are constricted at the nodes of Ranvier, where they are directly exposed to the extracellular space and where the vast majority of the ion channels are located. These constrictions are generated by local regulation of the kinetics of neurofilaments the most important cytoskeletal elements of the axon. In this paper we discuss how this shape affects the electrophysiological function of the neuron. Specifically, although the nodes are short (about 1 μm) in comparison to the distance between nodes (hundreds of μm) they have a substantial influence on the conduction velocity of neurons. We show through computational modeling that nodal constrictions (all other features such as numbers of ion channels left constant) reduce the required fiber diameter for a given target conduction velocity by up to 50% in comparison to an unconstricted axon. We further show that the predicted optimal fiber morphologies closely match reported fiber morphologies. Supported by The National Science Foundation (IOS 1146789)

  17. Motoneuron axon pathfinding errors in zebrafish: Differential effects related to concentration and timing of nicotine exposure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Menelaou, Evdokia; Paul, Latoya T.; Perera, Surangi N.; Svoboda, Kurt R.


    Nicotine exposure during embryonic stages of development can affect many neurodevelopmental processes. In the developing zebrafish, exposure to nicotine was reported to cause axonal pathfinding errors in the later born secondary motoneurons (SMNs). These alterations in SMN axon morphology coincided with muscle degeneration at high nicotine concentrations (15–30 μM). Previous work showed that the paralytic mutant zebrafish known as sofa potato exhibited nicotine-induced effects onto SMN axons at these high concentrations but in the absence of any muscle deficits, indicating that pathfinding errors could occur independent of muscle effects. In this study, we used varying concentrations of nicotine at different developmental windows of exposure to specifically isolate its effects onto subpopulations of motoneuron axons. We found that nicotine exposure can affect SMN axon morphology in a dose-dependent manner. At low concentrations of nicotine, SMN axons exhibited pathfinding errors, in the absence of any nicotine-induced muscle abnormalities. Moreover, the nicotine exposure paradigms used affected the 3 subpopulations of SMN axons differently, but the dorsal projecting SMN axons were primarily affected. We then identified morphologically distinct pathfinding errors that best described the nicotine-induced effects on dorsal projecting SMN axons. To test whether SMN pathfinding was potentially influenced by alterations in the early born primary motoneuron (PMN), we performed dual labeling studies, where both PMN and SMN axons were simultaneously labeled with antibodies. We show that only a subset of the SMN axon pathfinding errors coincided with abnormal PMN axonal targeting in nicotine-exposed zebrafish. We conclude that nicotine exposure can exert differential effects depending on the levels of nicotine and developmental exposure window. - Highlights: • Embryonic nicotine exposure can specifically affect secondary motoneuron axons in a dose-dependent manner.

  18. Motoneuron axon pathfinding errors in zebrafish: Differential effects related to concentration and timing of nicotine exposure

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Menelaou, Evdokia; Paul, Latoya T. [Department of Biological Sciences, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803 (United States); Perera, Surangi N. [Joseph J. Zilber School of Public Health, University of Wisconsin — Milwaukee, Milwaukee, WI 53205 (United States); Svoboda, Kurt R., E-mail: [Department of Biological Sciences, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803 (United States); Joseph J. Zilber School of Public Health, University of Wisconsin — Milwaukee, Milwaukee, WI 53205 (United States)


    Nicotine exposure during embryonic stages of development can affect many neurodevelopmental processes. In the developing zebrafish, exposure to nicotine was reported to cause axonal pathfinding errors in the later born secondary motoneurons (SMNs). These alterations in SMN axon morphology coincided with muscle degeneration at high nicotine concentrations (15–30 μM). Previous work showed that the paralytic mutant zebrafish known as sofa potato exhibited nicotine-induced effects onto SMN axons at these high concentrations but in the absence of any muscle deficits, indicating that pathfinding errors could occur independent of muscle effects. In this study, we used varying concentrations of nicotine at different developmental windows of exposure to specifically isolate its effects onto subpopulations of motoneuron axons. We found that nicotine exposure can affect SMN axon morphology in a dose-dependent manner. At low concentrations of nicotine, SMN axons exhibited pathfinding errors, in the absence of any nicotine-induced muscle abnormalities. Moreover, the nicotine exposure paradigms used affected the 3 subpopulations of SMN axons differently, but the dorsal projecting SMN axons were primarily affected. We then identified morphologically distinct pathfinding errors that best described the nicotine-induced effects on dorsal projecting SMN axons. To test whether SMN pathfinding was potentially influenced by alterations in the early born primary motoneuron (PMN), we performed dual labeling studies, where both PMN and SMN axons were simultaneously labeled with antibodies. We show that only a subset of the SMN axon pathfinding errors coincided with abnormal PMN axonal targeting in nicotine-exposed zebrafish. We conclude that nicotine exposure can exert differential effects depending on the levels of nicotine and developmental exposure window. - Highlights: • Embryonic nicotine exposure can specifically affect secondary motoneuron axons in a dose-dependent manner.

  19. Guidance of retinal axons in mammals. (United States)

    Herrera, Eloísa; Erskine, Lynda; Morenilla-Palao, Cruz


    In order to navigate through the surrounding environment many mammals, including humans, primarily rely on vision. The eye, composed of the choroid, sclera, retinal pigmented epithelium, cornea, lens, iris and retina, is the structure that receives the light and converts it into electrical impulses. The retina contains six major types of neurons involving in receiving and modifying visual information and passing it onto higher visual processing centres in the brain. Visual information is relayed to the brain via the axons of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs), a projection known as the optic pathway. The proper formation of this pathway during development is essential for normal vision in the adult individual. Along this pathway there are several points where visual axons face 'choices' in their direction of growth. Understanding how these choices are made has advanced significantly our knowledge of axon guidance mechanisms. Thus, the development of the visual pathway has served as an extremely useful model to reveal general principles of axon pathfinding throughout the nervous system. However, due to its particularities, some cellular and molecular mechanisms are specific for the visual circuit. Here we review both general and specific mechanisms involved in the guidance of mammalian RGC axons when they are traveling from the retina to the brain to establish precise and stereotyped connections that will sustain vision. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Glia to axon RNA transfer. (United States)

    Sotelo, José Roberto; Canclini, Lucía; Kun, Alejandra; Sotelo-Silveira, José Roberto; Calliari, Aldo; Cal, Karina; Bresque, Mariana; Dipaolo, Andrés; Farias, Joaquina; Mercer, John A


    The existence of RNA in axons has been a matter of dispute for decades. Evidence for RNA and ribosomes has now accumulated to a point at which it is difficult to question, much of the disputes turned to the origin of these axonal RNAs. In this review, we focus on studies addressing the origin of axonal RNAs and ribosomes. The neuronal soma as the source of most axonal RNAs has been demonstrated and is indisputable. However, the surrounding glial cells may be a supplemental source of axonal RNAs, a matter scarcely investigated in the literature. Here, we review the few papers that have demonstrated that glial-to-axon RNA transfer is not only feasible, but likely. We describe this process in both invertebrate axons and vertebrate axons. Schwann cell to axon ribosomes transfer was conclusively demonstrated (Court et al. [2008]: J. Neurosci 28:11024-11029; Court et al. [2011]: Glia 59:1529-1539). However, mRNA transfer still remains to be demonstrated in a conclusive way. The intercellular transport of mRNA has interesting implications, particularly with respect to the integration of glial and axonal function. This evolving field is likely to impact our understanding of the cell biology of the axon in both normal and pathological conditions. Most importantly, if the synthesis of proteins in the axon can be controlled by interacting glia, the possibilities for clinical interventions in injury and neurodegeneration are greatly increased. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. Assessing Somatosensory Utilization during Unipedal Postural Control


    Goel, Rahul; De Dios, Yiri E.; Gadd, Nichole E.; Caldwell, Erin E.; Peters, Brian T.; Reschke, Millard F.; Bloomberg, Jacob J.; Oddsson, Lars I. E.; Mulavara, Ajitkumar P.


    Multisensory—visual, vestibular and somatosensory information is integrated for appropriate postural control. The primary goal of this study was to assess somatosensory utilization during a functional motor task of unipedal postural control, in normal healthy adults. Assessing individual bias in the utilization of individual sensory contributions during postural control may help customization of rehabilitation protocols. In this study, a test paradigm of unipedal stance control in supine orie...

  2. Behavioral Consequences of a Bifacial Map in the Mouse Somatosensory Cortex. (United States)

    Tsytsarev, Vassiliy; Arakawa, Hiroyuki; Zhao, Shuxin; Chédotal, Alain; Erzurumlu, Reha S


    The whisker system is an important sensory organ with extensive neural representations in the brain of the mouse. Patterned neural modules (barrelettes) in the ipsilateral principal sensory nucleus of the trigeminal nerve (PrV) correspond to the whiskers. Axons of the PrV barrelette neurons cross the midline and confer the whisker-related patterning to the contralateral ventroposteromedial nucleus of the thalamus, and subsequently to the cortex. In this way, specific neural modules called barreloids and barrels in the contralateral thalamus and cortex represent each whisker. Partial midline crossing of the PrV axons, in a conditional Robo3 mutant ( Robo3 R3-5 cKO ) mouse line, leads to the formation of bilateral whisker maps in the ventroposteromedial, as well as the barrel cortex. We used voltage-sensitive dye optical imaging and somatosensory and motor behavioral tests to characterize the consequences of bifacial maps in the thalamocortical system. Voltage-sensitive dye optical imaging verified functional, bilateral whisker representation in the barrel cortex and activation of distinct cortical loci following ipsilateral and contralateral stimulation of the specific whiskers. The mutant animals were comparable with the control animals in sensorimotor tests. However, they showed noticeable deficits in all of the whisker-dependent or -related tests, including Y-maze exploration, horizontal surface approach, bridge crossing, gap crossing, texture discrimination, floating in water, and whisking laterality. Our results indicate that bifacial maps along the thalamocortical system do not offer a functional advantage. Instead, they lead to impairments, possibly due to the smaller size of the whisker-related modules and interference between the ipsilateral and contralateral whisker representations in the same thalamus and cortex. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The whisker sensory system plays a quintessentially important role in exploratory behavior of mice and other nocturnal

  3. Effect of Somatosensory Impairments on Balance Control

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    Alireza Hassanpour


    Full Text Available Background and Aim: The somatosensory system is one of the most effective systems in balance control. It consists of peripheral and central components. Knowing the role of these components in balance control assists the developing of effective rehabilitation protocols. In some diseases peripheral components and in others central components are impaired. This paper reviews the effect of impairment of peripheral and central components of the somatosensory system on balance control.Methods: In this study publication about somatosensory impairments from 1983 through 2011 in PubMed, Scopus, ProQuest, Google Scholar, Iran Medex, Iran Doc and Magiran were reviewed. Medical subject headings terms and keywords related to balance, somatosensory, somatosensory loss, and sensory integration/processing were used to perform the searches.Conclusion: Somatosensory impairments either with peripheral or central origin, can cause problems in balance control. However, these problems are not considered in some patients. In these impairments, balance training is recommended to be used alongside other routine treatments in the patients' rehabilitation programs.

  4. Npn-1 contributes to axon-axon interactions that differentially control sensory and motor innervation of the limb.

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    Rosa-Eva Huettl


    Full Text Available The initiation, execution, and completion of complex locomotor behaviors are depending on precisely integrated neural circuitries consisting of motor pathways that activate muscles in the extremities and sensory afferents that deliver feedback to motoneurons. These projections form in tight temporal and spatial vicinities during development, yet the molecular mechanisms and cues coordinating these processes are not well understood. Using cell-type specific ablation of the axon guidance receptor Neuropilin-1 (Npn-1 in spinal motoneurons or in sensory neurons in the dorsal root ganglia (DRG, we have explored the contribution of this signaling pathway to correct innervation of the limb. We show that Npn-1 controls the fasciculation of both projections and mediates inter-axonal communication. Removal of Npn-1 from sensory neurons results in defasciculation of sensory axons and, surprisingly, also of motor axons. In addition, the tight coupling between these two heterotypic axonal populations is lifted with sensory fibers now leading the spinal nerve projection. These findings are corroborated by partial genetic elimination of sensory neurons, which causes defasciculation of motor projections to the limb. Deletion of Npn-1 from motoneurons leads to severe defasciculation of motor axons in the distal limb and dorsal-ventral pathfinding errors, while outgrowth and fasciculation of sensory trajectories into the limb remain unaffected. Genetic elimination of motoneurons, however, revealed that sensory axons need only minimal scaffolding by motor axons to establish their projections in the distal limb. Thus, motor and sensory axons are mutually dependent on each other for the generation of their trajectories and interact in part through Npn-1-mediated fasciculation before and within the plexus region of the limbs.

  5. Synaptic and Cellular Organization of Layer 1 of the Developing Rat Somatosensory Cortex

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    Shruti eMuralidhar


    Full Text Available We have performed a systematic and quantitative study of the neuronal and synaptic organisation of neocortical layer 1 in the somatosensory cortex in juvenile rats (P13 – P16 using multi-neuron patch-clamp and 3D morphology reconstructions. We used both subjective expert based and objective classification to establish distinct morphological groups. According to expert based subjective classification, the neurons were classified into six morphological types: (1 the dense axon neurogliaform cell (NGC-DA and (2 a sparse axon neurogliaform cell (NGC-SA, (3 the horizontal axon cell (HAC and (4 those with descending axonal colaterals (DAC, (5 the large axon cell (LAC and (6 the small axon cell (SAC. We also used objective supervised and unsupervised analyses that confirmed 4 out of the 6 expert proposed groups, namely, DAC, HAC, LAC and a combined NGC. The cells were also classified into 5 electrophysiological types based on the Petilla convention; classical non-adapting (cNAC, burst non-adapting (bNAC, classical adapting (cAC, classical stuttering (cSTUT and classical irregular spiking (cIR. The most common electrophysiological type was the cNAC type (40% and the most commonly encountered morpho-electrical type of neuron was the NGC-DA - cNAC. Layer 1 cells are connected by GABAergic inhibitory synaptic connections with a 7.9% connection probability, as well gap junctions with 5.2% connection probability. Most synaptic connections were mediated by both GABAA and GABAB receptors (62.6%, as observed from the response characteristics to single pulse and train stimulations. A smaller fraction of synaptic connections were mediated exclusively by GABAA (15.4% or GABAB (21.8% receptors. Based on the morphological reconstructions, we found multi-synapse connections with an average of 9 putative synapses per connection. These putative touches were widely distributed with 39% on somata and 61% on dendrites.

  6. Anatomical evidence for direct fiber projections from the cerebellar nucleus interpositus to rubrospinal neurons. A quantitative EM study in the rat combining anterograde and retrograde intra-axonal tracing methods

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dekker, J.J.


    A quantitative electron microscopic (EM) study combining the anterograde intra-axonal transport of radioactive amino acids and the retrograde intra-axonal transport of the enzyme horseradish peroxidase (HRP) was performed in the magnocellular red nucleus of the rat to obtain anatomical evidence as to whether there is a direct projection from the cerebellar nucleus interpositus to the cells in the red nucleus that give rise to the rubrospinal tract. Large asymmetrical synaptic terminals were radioactively labeled in the magnocellular red nucleus following injections of [ 3 H]leucine into the cerebellar nucleus interpositus. In these same animals, the postsynaptic target neurons were labeled with HRP granules after injection of this substance in the rubrospinal tract. A quantitative analysis showed that more than 85% of the large and giant neurons in the magnocellular red nucleus were labeled with HRP granules and also received synaptic contacts from radioactively-labeled terminals. Thus, it can be concluded that in the rat, afferents from the cerebellar nucleus interpositus establish asymmetrical synaptic contacts with large and giant rubrospinal neurons, thus confirming and extending the previous physiological evidence of such direct monosynaptic connections. (Auth.)

  7. Signal propagation along the axon. (United States)

    Rama, Sylvain; Zbili, Mickaël; Debanne, Dominique


    Axons link distant brain regions and are usually considered as simple transmission cables in which reliable propagation occurs once an action potential has been generated. Safe propagation of action potentials relies on specific ion channel expression at strategic points of the axon such as nodes of Ranvier or axonal branch points. However, while action potentials are generally considered as the quantum of neuronal information, their signaling is not entirely digital. In fact, both their shape and their conduction speed have been shown to be modulated by activity, leading to regulations of synaptic latency and synaptic strength. We report here newly identified mechanisms of (1) safe spike propagation along the axon, (2) compartmentalization of action potential shape in the axon, (3) analog modulation of spike-evoked synaptic transmission and (4) alteration in conduction time after persistent regulation of axon morphology in central neurons. We discuss the contribution of these regulations in information processing. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Subliminal stimulation and somatosensory signal detection. (United States)

    Ferrè, Elisa Raffaella; Sahani, Maneesh; Haggard, Patrick


    Only a small fraction of sensory signals is consciously perceived. The brain's perceptual systems may include mechanisms of feedforward inhibition that protect the cortex from subliminal noise, thus reserving cortical capacity and conscious awareness for significant stimuli. Here we provide a new view of these mechanisms based on signal detection theory, and gain control. We demonstrated that subliminal somatosensory stimulation decreased sensitivity for the detection of a subsequent somatosensory input, largely due to increased false alarm rates. By delivering the subliminal somatosensory stimulus and the to-be-detected somatosensory stimulus to different digits of the same hand, we show that this effect spreads across the sensory surface. In addition, subliminal somatosensory stimulation tended to produce an increased probability of responding "yes", whether the somatosensory stimulus was present or not. Our results suggest that subliminal stimuli temporarily reduce input gain, avoiding excessive responses to further small inputs. This gain control may be automatic, and may precede discriminative classification of inputs into signals or noise. Crucially, we found that subliminal inputs influenced false alarm rates only on blocks where the to-be-detected stimuli were present, and not on pre-test control blocks where they were absent. Participants appeared to adjust their perceptual criterion according to a statistical distribution of stimuli in the current context, with the presence of supraliminal stimuli having an important role in the criterion-setting process. These findings clarify the cognitive mechanisms that reserve conscious perception for salient and important signals. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Functional MRI activation of somatosensory and motor cortices in a hand-grafted patient with early clinical sensorimotor recovery

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Neugroschl, C.; Denolin, V.; Schuind, F.; Holder, C. van; David, P.; Baleriaux, D.; Metens, T.


    The aim of this study was to investigate somatosensory and motor cortical activity with functional MRI (fMRI) in a hand-grafted patient with early clinical recovery. The patient had motor fMRI examinations before transplantation, and motor and passive tactile stimulations after surgery. His normal hand and a normal group were studied for comparison. A patient with complete brachial plexus palsy was studied to assess the lack of a fMRI signal in somatosensory areas in the case of total axonal disconnection. Stimulating the grafted hand revealed significant activation in the contralateral somatosensory cortical areas in all fMRI examinations. The activation was seen as early as 10 days after surgery; this effect cannot be explained by the known physiological mechanisms of nerve regeneration. Although an imagination effect cannot be excluded, the objective clinical recovery of sensory function led us to formulate the hypothesis that a connection to the somatosensory cortex was rapidly established. Additional cases and fundamental studies are needed to assess this hypothesis, but several observations were compatible with this explanation. Before surgery, imaginary motion of the amputated hand produced less intense responses than executed movements of the intact hand, whereas the normal activation pattern for right-handed subjects was found after surgery, in agreement with the good clinical motor recovery. (orig.)

  10. Laterodorsal nucleus of the thalamus: A processor of somatosensory inputs. (United States)

    Bezdudnaya, Tatiana; Keller, Asaf


    The laterodorsal (LD) nucleus of the thalamus has been considered a "higher order" nucleus that provides inputs to limbic cortical areas. Although its functions are largely unknown, it is often considered to be involved in spatial learning and memory. Here we provide evidence that LD is part of a hitherto unknown pathway for processing somatosensory information. Juxtacellular and extracellular recordings from LD neurons reveal that they respond to vibrissa stimulation with short latency (median = 7 ms) and large magnitude responses (median = 1.2 spikes/stimulus). Most neurons (62%) had large receptive fields, responding to six and more individual vibrissae. Electrical stimulation of the trigeminal nucleus interpolaris (SpVi) evoked short latency responses (median = 3.8 ms) in vibrissa-responsive LD neurons. Labeling produced by anterograde and retrograde neuroanatomical tracers confirmed that LD neurons receive direct inputs from SpVi. Electrophysiological and neuroanatomical analyses revealed also that LD projects upon the cingulate and retrosplenial cortex, but has only sparse projections to the barrel cortex. These findings suggest that LD is part of a novel processing stream involved in spatial orientation and learning related to somatosensory cues. (c) 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  11. The genetics of axonal transport and axonal transport disorders.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jason E Duncan


    Full Text Available Neurons are specialized cells with a complex architecture that includes elaborate dendritic branches and a long, narrow axon that extends from the cell body to the synaptic terminal. The organized transport of essential biological materials throughout the neuron is required to support its growth, function, and viability. In this review, we focus on insights that have emerged from the genetic analysis of long-distance axonal transport between the cell body and the synaptic terminal. We also discuss recent genetic evidence that supports the hypothesis that disruptions in axonal transport may cause or dramatically contribute to neurodegenerative diseases.

  12. High serotonin levels during brain development alter the structural input-output connectivity of neural networks in the rat somatosensory layer IV

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stéphanie eMiceli


    Full Text Available Homeostatic regulation of serotonin (5-HT concentration is critical for normal topographical organization and development of thalamocortical (TC afferent circuits. Down-regulation of the serotonin transporter (SERT and the consequent impaired reuptake of 5-HT at the synapse, results in a reduced terminal branching of developing TC afferents within the primary somatosensory cortex (S1. Despite the presence of multiple genetic models, the effect of high extracellular 5-HT levels on the structure and function of developing intracortical neural networks is far from being understood. Here, using juvenile SERT knockout (SERT-/- rats we investigated, in vitro, the effect of increased 5-HT levels on the structural organization of (i the thalamocortical projections of the ventroposteromedial thalamic nucleus towards S1, (ii the general barrel-field pattern and (iii the electrophysiological and morphological properties of the excitatory cell population in layer IV of S1 (spiny stellate and pyramidal cells. Our results confirmed previous findings that high levels of 5-HT during development lead to a reduction of the topographical precision of TCA projections towards the barrel cortex. Also, the barrel pattern was altered but not abolished in SERT-/- rats. In layer IV, both excitatory spiny stellate and pyramidal cells showed a significantly reduced intracolumnar organization of their axonal projections. In addition, the layer IV spiny stellate cells gave rise to a prominent projection towards the infragranular layer Vb. Our findings point to a structural and functional reorganization, of TCAs, as well as early stage intracortical microcircuitry, following the disruption of 5-HT reuptake during critical developmental periods. The increased projection pattern of the layer IV neurons suggests that the intracortical network changes are not limited to the main entry layer IV but may also affect the subsequent stages of the canonical circuits of the barrel

  13. Temporal factors affecting somatosensory-auditory interactions in speech processing

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    Takayuki eIto


    Full Text Available Speech perception is known to rely on both auditory and visual information. However, sound specific somatosensory input has been shown also to influence speech perceptual processing (Ito et al., 2009. In the present study we addressed further the relationship between somatosensory information and speech perceptual processing by addressing the hypothesis that the temporal relationship between orofacial movement and sound processing contributes to somatosensory-auditory interaction in speech perception. We examined the changes in event-related potentials in response to multisensory synchronous (simultaneous and asynchronous (90 ms lag and lead somatosensory and auditory stimulation compared to individual unisensory auditory and somatosensory stimulation alone. We used a robotic device to apply facial skin somatosensory deformations that were similar in timing and duration to those experienced in speech production. Following synchronous multisensory stimulation the amplitude of the event-related potential was reliably different from the two unisensory potentials. More importantly, the magnitude of the event-related potential difference varied as a function of the relative timing of the somatosensory-auditory stimulation. Event-related activity change due to stimulus timing was seen between 160-220 ms following somatosensory onset, mostly around the parietal area. The results demonstrate a dynamic modulation of somatosensory-auditory convergence and suggest the contribution of somatosensory information for speech processing process is dependent on the specific temporal order of sensory inputs in speech production.

  14. Assessing Somatosensory Utilization during Unipedal Postural Control. (United States)

    Goel, Rahul; De Dios, Yiri E; Gadd, Nichole E; Caldwell, Erin E; Peters, Brian T; Reschke, Millard F; Bloomberg, Jacob J; Oddsson, Lars I E; Mulavara, Ajitkumar P


    Multisensory-visual, vestibular and somatosensory information is integrated for appropriate postural control. The primary goal of this study was to assess somatosensory utilization during a functional motor task of unipedal postural control, in normal healthy adults. Assessing individual bias in the utilization of individual sensory contributions during postural control may help customization of rehabilitation protocols. In this study, a test paradigm of unipedal stance control in supine orientation with and without vision was assessed. Postural control in this test paradigm was hypothesized to utilize predominantly contributions of somatosensory information from the feet and ankle joint, with minimal vestibular input. Fourteen healthy subjects "stood" supine on their dominant leg while strapped to a backpack frame that was freely moving on air-bearings, to remove available otolith tilt cues with respect to gravity that influences postural control when standing upright. The backpack was attached through a cable to a pneumatic cylinder that provided a gravity-like load. Subjects performed three trials each with Eyes-open (EO) and Eyes-closed (EC) while loaded with 60% body weight. There was no difference in unipedal stance time (UST) across the two conditions with EC condition challenging the postural control system greater than the EO condition. Stabilogram-diffusion analysis (SDA) indicated that the critical mean square displacement was significantly different between the two conditions. Vestibular cues, both in terms of magnitude and the duration for which relevant information was available for postural control in this test paradigm, were minimized. These results support our hypothesis that maintaining unipedal stance in supine orientation without vision, minimizes vestibular contribution and thus predominantly utilizes somatosensory information for postural control.

  15. [Maturation of cerebral somatosensory evoked potentials]. (United States)

    Cadilhac, J; Zhu, Y; Georgesco, M; Echenne, B; Rodiere, M


    Cerebral somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) were elicited by stimulation of the median nerve and/or posterior tibial nerve in 117 children of 1 day to 16 years old. A major negative wave (N) was consistently recorded from the parietal region of the scalp when the arm was stimulated. The peak latency, the onset latency, the rising time and the duration of H wave are closely correlated with age and body length. The latencies are shortest in the subjects of 1-3 years old. SEPs to lower extremity stimulation were inconstant in the infants before the age of one. The major positive wave (P) has a variable topographic distribution along the middle line, over the scalp. The latencies are also very variable in the different subjects of the same age as well as in the same subject with different locations of active electrode. Among the parameters studied as for N wave, only the rising time of P wave is significantly correlated with age. The latencies of P wave have the shortest value in the subjects of 1-3 years old. The comparison of SEPs to upper and to lower limb stimulations shows that there is no relationship between them in respect to their morphology and amplitude. The minimum value of the latencies of N and P waves was observed at the same age but the difference between the peak latencies of P and N waves in the same subject increases considerably after 2 years of age and reaches the adult value after 5 years of age. These resultats indicate that the maturation of the peripheral somatosensory pathways proceeds at a higher rate than that of the central somatosensory pathways, that the maturation of the somatosensory pathways of the upper limb precedes that of the lower limb, and that the rising time of N or P waves is a good index of cortical maturation. The clinical utility of these SEPs in pediatrics is discussed.

  16. Axon tension regulates fasciculation/defasciculation through the control of axon shaft zippering

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Šmít, Daniel; Fouquet, C.; Pincet, F.; Zápotocký, Martin; Trembleau, A.


    Roč. 6, Apr 19 (2017), č. článku e19907. ISSN 2050-084X R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA14-16755S; GA MŠk(CZ) 7AMB12FR002 Institutional support: RVO:67985823 Keywords : biophysics * cell adhesion * coarsening * developmental biology * mathematical model * mechanical tension * axon guidance Subject RIV: BO - Biophysics OBOR OECD: Biophysics Impact factor: 7.725, year: 2016

  17. Somatosensory tinnitus: Current evidence and future perspectives (United States)

    Greco, Antonio; Turchetta, Rosaria; Altissimi, Giancarlo; de Vincentiis, Marco; Cianfrone, Giancarlo


    In some individuals, tinnitus can be modulated by specific maneuvers of the temporomandibular joint, head and neck, eyes, and limbs. Neuroplasticity seems to play a central role in this capacity for modulation, suggesting that abnormal interactions between the sensory modalities, sensorimotor systems, and neurocognitive and neuroemotional networks may contribute to the development of somatosensory tinnitus. Current evidence supports a link between somatic disorders and higher modulation of tinnitus, especially in patients with a normal hearing threshold. Patients with tinnitus who have somatic disorders seems to have a higher chance of modulating their tinnitus with somatic maneuvers; consistent improvements in tinnitus symptoms have been observed in patients with temporomandibular joint disease following targeted therapy for temporomandibular disorders. Somatosensory tinnitus is often overlooked by otolaryngologists and not fully investigated during the diagnostic process. Somatic disorders, when identified and treated, can be a valid therapeutic target for tinnitus; however, somatic screening of subjects for somatosensory tinnitus is imperative for correct selection of patients who would benefit from a multidisciplinary somatic approach. PMID:28553764

  18. Somatosensory tinnitus: Current evidence and future perspectives. (United States)

    Ralli, Massimo; Greco, Antonio; Turchetta, Rosaria; Altissimi, Giancarlo; de Vincentiis, Marco; Cianfrone, Giancarlo


    In some individuals, tinnitus can be modulated by specific maneuvers of the temporomandibular joint, head and neck, eyes, and limbs. Neuroplasticity seems to play a central role in this capacity for modulation, suggesting that abnormal interactions between the sensory modalities, sensorimotor systems, and neurocognitive and neuroemotional networks may contribute to the development of somatosensory tinnitus. Current evidence supports a link between somatic disorders and higher modulation of tinnitus, especially in patients with a normal hearing threshold. Patients with tinnitus who have somatic disorders seems to have a higher chance of modulating their tinnitus with somatic maneuvers; consistent improvements in tinnitus symptoms have been observed in patients with temporomandibular joint disease following targeted therapy for temporomandibular disorders. Somatosensory tinnitus is often overlooked by otolaryngologists and not fully investigated during the diagnostic process. Somatic disorders, when identified and treated, can be a valid therapeutic target for tinnitus; however, somatic screening of subjects for somatosensory tinnitus is imperative for correct selection of patients who would benefit from a multidisciplinary somatic approach.

  19. Axonal voltage-gated ion channels as pharmacological targets for pain

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Moldovan, Mihai; Alvarez, Susana; Romer Rosberg, Mette


    Upon peripheral nerve injury (caused by trauma or disease process) axons of the dorsal root ganglion (DRG) somatosensory neurons have the ability to sprout and regrow/remyelinate to reinnervate distant target tissue or form a tangled scar mass called a neuroma. This regenerative response can become...... maladaptive leading to a persistent and debilitating pain state referred to as chronic pain corresponding to the clinical description of neuropathic/chronic inflammatory pain. There is little agreement to what causes peripheral chronic pain other than hyperactivity of the nociceptive DRG neurons which...... ultimately depends on the function of voltage-gated ion channels. This review focuses on the pharmacological modulators of voltage-gated ion channels known to be present on axonal membrane which represents by far the largest surface of DRG neurons. Blockers of voltage-gated Na(+) channels, openers of voltage...

  20. Use of self-complementary adeno-associated virus serotype 2 as a tracer for labeling axons: implications for axon regeneration.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yingpeng Liu

    Full Text Available Various types of tracers are available for use in axon regeneration, but they require an extra operational tracer injection, time-consuming immunohistochemical analysis and cause non-specific labeling. Considerable efforts over the past years have explored other methodologies, especially the use of viral vectors, to investigate axon regeneration after injury. Recent studies have demonstrated that self-complementary Adeno-Associated Virus (scAAV induced a high transduction efficiency and faster expression of transgenes. Here, we describe for the first time the use of scAAV2-GFP to label long-projection axons in the corticospinal tract (CST, rubrospinal tract (RST and the central axons of dorsal root ganglion (DRG in the normal and lesioned animal models. We found that scAAV2-GFP could efficiently transduce neurons in the sensorimotor cortex, red nucleus and DRG. Strong GFP expression could be transported anterogradely along the axon to label the numerous axon fibers from CST, RST and central axons of DRG separately. Comparison of the scAAV2 vector with single-stranded (ss AAV2 vector in co-labeled sections showed that the scAAV2 vector induced a faster and stronger transgene expression than the ssAAV2 vector in DRG neurons and their axons. In both spinal cord lesion and dorsal root crush injury models, scAAV-GFP could efficiently label the lesioned and regenerated axons around the lesion cavity and the dorsal root entry zone (DREZ respectively. Further, scAAV2-GFP vector could be combined with traditional tracer to specifically label sensory and motor axons after spinal cord lesion. Thus, we show that using scAAV2-GFP as a tracer is a more effective and efficient way to study axon regeneration following injury.

  1. Axonal Conduction Delays, Brain State, and Corticogeniculate Communication. (United States)

    Stoelzel, Carl R; Bereshpolova, Yulia; Alonso, Jose-Manuel; Swadlow, Harvey A


    Thalamocortical conduction times are short, but layer 6 corticothalamic axons display an enormous range of conduction times, some exceeding 40-50 ms. Here, we investigate (1) how axonal conduction times of corticogeniculate (CG) neurons are related to the visual information conveyed to the thalamus, and (2) how alert versus nonalert awake brain states affect visual processing across the spectrum of CG conduction times. In awake female Dutch-Belted rabbits, we found 58% of CG neurons to be visually responsive, and 42% to be unresponsive. All responsive CG neurons had simple, orientation-selective receptive fields, and generated sustained responses to stationary stimuli. CG axonal conduction times were strongly related to modulated firing rates (F1 values) generated by drifting grating stimuli, and their associated interspike interval distributions, suggesting a continuum of visual responsiveness spanning the spectrum of axonal conduction times. CG conduction times were also significantly related to visual response latency, contrast sensitivity (C-50 values), directional selectivity, and optimal stimulus velocity. Increasing alertness did not cause visually unresponsive CG neurons to become responsive and did not change the response linearity (F1/F0 ratios) of visually responsive CG neurons. However, for visually responsive CG neurons, increased alertness nearly doubled the modulated response amplitude to optimal visual stimulation (F1 values), significantly shortened response latency, and dramatically increased response reliability. These effects of alertness were uniform across the broad spectrum of CG axonal conduction times. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Corticothalamic neurons of layer 6 send a dense feedback projection to thalamic nuclei that provide input to sensory neocortex. While sensory information reaches the cortex after brief thalamocortical axonal delays, corticothalamic axons can exhibit conduction delays of <2 ms to 40-50 ms. Here, in the corticogeniculate

  2. Wnt5a regulates midbrain dopaminergic axon growth and guidance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brette D Blakely


    Full Text Available During development, precise temporal and spatial gradients are responsible for guiding axons to their appropriate targets. Within the developing ventral midbrain (VM the cues that guide dopaminergic (DA axons to their forebrain targets remain to be fully elucidated. Wnts are morphogens that have been identified as axon guidance molecules. Several Wnts are expressed in the VM where they regulate the birth of DA neurons. Here, we describe that a precise temporo-spatial expression of Wnt5a accompanies the development of nigrostriatal projections by VM DA neurons. In mice at E11.5, Wnt5a is expressed in the VM where it was found to promote DA neurite and axonal growth in VM primary cultures. By E14.5, when DA axons are approaching their striatal target, Wnt5a causes DA neurite retraction in primary cultures. Co-culture of VM explants with Wnt5a-overexpressing cell aggregates revealed that Wnt5a is capable of repelling DA neurites. Antagonism experiments revealed that the effects of Wnt5a are mediated by the Frizzled receptors and by the small GTPase, Rac1 (a component of the non-canonical Wnt planar cell polarity pathway. Moreover, the effects were specific as they could be blocked by Wnt5a antibody, sFRPs and RYK-Fc. The importance of Wnt5a in DA axon morphogenesis was further verified in Wnt5a-/- mice, where fasciculation of the medial forebrain bundle (MFB as well as the density of DA neurites in the MFB and striatal terminals were disrupted. Thus, our results identify a novel role of Wnt5a in DA axon growth and guidance.

  3. Axon density and axon orientation dispersion in children born preterm

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kelly, Claire E.; Thompson, Deanne K.; Chen, Jian; Leemans, Alexander; Adamson, Christopher L.; Inder, Terrie E.; Cheong, Jeanie L Y; Doyle, Lex W.; Anderson, Peter J.


    Background Very preterm birth (VPT, <32 weeks' gestation) is associated with altered white matter fractional anisotropy (FA), the biological basis of which is uncertain but may relate to changes in axon density and/or dispersion, which can be measured using Neurite Orientation Dispersion and Density

  4. The coincident activation of lemniscal and paralemniscal inputs can drive synaptic plasticity in layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons of the mouse somatosensory cortex in vivo

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    Vassilis Kehayas


    Full Text Available Structural plasticity in the somatosensory cortex is maintained throughout life. In adult animals structural changes occur at the level of dendritic spines and axonal boutons in response to alterations in sensory experience. The causal relationship between synaptic activity and structural changes, however, is not clear. Hebbian-plasticity models predict that synapses will be stabilized at the nodes of neuronal networks that display high levels of coincident activity. Here, we aim at studying the effects of a targeted increase in coincident activity between segregated inputs on pyramidal cell synapses of the mouse somatosensory barrel cortex in vivo. Supragranular layers of the barrel cortex receive anatomically distinct inputs from two thalamic pathways: the ‘lemniscal’ pathway that originates in the ventral posteromedial (VPM nucleus and projects in a whisker-specific fashion to the barrel columns, and the ‘paralemniscal’ pathway that originates in the posteromedial (POm nucleus and projects to the cortex in a non-specific manner. Previous work from our lab shows that rhythmic (8Hz whisker stimulation-evoked LTP (RWS-LTP in layer (L 2/3 pyramidal cells relies on the combined activity of lemniscal and paralemniscal pathways. Here, we targeted ChR2 expression to POm neurons using AAV-mediated gene transfer in order to optically control the activity of those inputs. As a first step, we show that photostimulation of the POm nucleus induces NMDA-dependent, sub-threshold responses in L2/3 pyramidal cells similar to those that are required for the induction of RWS-LTP. In addition, simultaneous photostimulation of POm neurons together with whisker stimulation at low frequencies (1Hz can also elicit LTP, suggesting that coincident lemniscal and paralemniscal input can drive LTP induction. Next, we combined the ChR2-tdTomato expression in POm neurons with sparse AAV-mediated eGFP expression in L2/3 pyramidal cells in order to study the effects

  5. En masse in vitro functional profiling of the axonal mechanosensitivity of sensory neurons. (United States)

    Usoskin, Dmitry; Zilberter, Misha; Linnarsson, Sten; Hjerling-Leffler, Jens; Uhlén, Per; Harkany, Tibor; Ernfors, Patrik


    Perception of the environment relies on somatosensory neurons. Mechanosensory, proprioceptor and many nociceptor subtypes of these neurons have specific mechanosensitivity profiles to adequately differentiate stimulus patterns. Nevertheless, the cellular basis of differential mechanosensation remains largely elusive. Successful transduction of sensory information relies on the recruitment of sensory neurons and mechanosensation occurring at their peripheral axonal endings in vivo. Conspicuously, existing in vitro models aimed to decipher molecular mechanisms of mechanosensation test single sensory neuron somata at any one time. Here, we introduce a compartmental in vitro chamber design to deliver precisely controlled mechanical stimulation of sensory axons with synchronous real-time imaging of Ca(2+) transients in neuronal somata that reliably reflect action potential firing patterns. We report of three previously not characterized types of mechanosensitive neuron subpopulations with distinct intrinsic axonal properties tuned specifically to static indentation or vibration stimuli, showing that different classes of sensory neurons are tuned to specific types of mechanical stimuli. Primary receptor currents of vibration neurons display rapidly adapting conductance reliably detected for every single stimulus during vibration and are consistently converted into action potentials. This result allows for the characterization of two critical steps of mechanosensation in vivo: primary signal detection and signal conversion into specific action potential firing patterns in axons.

  6. Neuron-to-neuron transmission of α-synuclein fibrils through axonal transport (United States)

    Freundt, Eric C.; Maynard, Nate; Clancy, Eileen K.; Roy, Shyamali; Bousset, Luc; Sourigues, Yannick; Covert, Markus; Melki, Ronald; Kirkegaard, Karla; Brahic, Michel


    Objective The lesions of Parkinson's disease spread through the brain in a characteristic pattern that corresponds to axonal projections. Previous observations suggest that misfolded α-synuclein could behave as a prion, moving from neuron to neuron and causing endogenous α-synuclein to misfold. Here, we characterized and quantified the axonal transport of α-synuclein fibrils and showed that fibrils could be transferred from axons to second-order neurons following anterograde transport. Methods We grew primary cortical mouse neurons in microfluidic devices to separate soma from axonal projections in fluidically isolated microenvironments. We used live-cell imaging and immunofluorescence to characterize the transport of fluorescent α-synuclein fibrils and their transfer to second-order neurons. Results Fibrillar α-synuclein was internalized by primary neurons and transported in axons with kinetics consistent with slow component-b of axonal transport (fast axonal transport with saltatory movement). Fibrillar α-synuclein was readily observed in the cell bodies of second-order neurons following anterograde axonal transport. Axon-to-soma transfer appeared not to require synaptic contacts. Interpretation These results support the hypothesis that the progression of Parkinson's disease can be caused by neuron-to-neuron spread of α-synuclein aggregates and that the anatomical pattern of progression of lesions between axonally connected areas results from the axonal transport of such aggregates. That the transfer did not appear to be transsynaptic gives hope that α-synuclein fibrils could be intercepted by drugs during the extra-cellular phase of their journey. PMID:23109146

  7. Posterior Thalamic Nucleus Modulation of Tactile Stimuli Processing in Rat Motor and Primary Somatosensory Cortices

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diana Casas-Torremocha


    Full Text Available Rodents move rhythmically their facial whiskers and compute differences between signals predicted and those resulting from the movement to infer information about objects near their head. These computations are carried out by a large network of forebrain structures that includes the thalamus and the primary somatosensory (S1BF and motor (M1wk cortices. Spatially and temporally precise mechanorreceptive whisker information reaches the S1BF cortex via the ventroposterior medial thalamic nucleus (VPM. Other whisker-related information may reach both M1wk and S1BF via the axons from the posterior thalamic nucleus (Po. However, Po axons may convey, in addition to direct sensory signals, the dynamic output of computations between whisker signals and descending motor commands. It has been proposed that this input may be relevant for adjusting cortical responses to predicted vs. unpredicted whisker signals, but the effects of Po input on M1wk and S1BF function have not been directly tested or compared in vivo. Here, using electrophysiology, optogenetics and pharmacological tools, we compared in adult rats M1wk and S1BF in vivo responses in the whisker areas of the motor and primary somatosensory cortices to passive multi-whisker deflection, their dependence on Po activity, and their changes after a brief intense activation of Po axons. We report that the latencies of the first component of tactile-evoked local field potentials in M1wk and S1BF are similar. The evoked potentials decrease markedly in M1wk, but not in S1BF, by injection in Po of the GABAA agonist muscimol. A brief high-frequency electrical stimulation of Po decreases the responsivity of M1wk and S1BF cells to subsequent whisker stimulation. This effect is prevented by the local application of omega-agatoxin, suggesting that it may in part depend on GABA release by fast-spiking parvalbumin (PV-expressing cortical interneurons. Local optogenetic activation of Po synapses in different

  8. Optofluidic control of axonal guidance (United States)

    Gu, Ling; Ordonez, Simon; Black, Bryan; Mohanty, Samarendra K.


    Significant efforts are being made for control on axonal guidance due to its importance in nerve regeneration and in the formation of functional neuronal circuitry in-vitro. These include several physical (topographic modification, optical force, and electric field), chemical (surface functionalization cues) and hybrid (electro-chemical, photochemical etc) methods. Here, we report comparison of the effect of linear flow versus microfluidic flow produced by an opticallydriven micromotor in guiding retinal ganglion axons. A circularly polarized laser tweezers was used to hold, position and spin birefringent calcite particle near growth cone, which in turn resulted in microfluidic flow. The flow rate and resulting shear-force on axons could be controlled by a varying the power of the laser tweezers beam. The calcite particles were placed separately in one chamber and single particle was transported through microfluidic channel to another chamber containing the retina explant. In presence of flow, the turning of axons was found to strongly correlate with the direction of flow. Turning angle as high as 90° was achieved. Optofluidic-manipulation can be applied to other types of mammalian neurons and also can be extended to stimulate mechano-sensing neurons.

  9. Anterograde axonal transport and intercellular transfer of WGA-HRP in trigeminal-innervated sensory receptors of rat incisive papilla. (United States)

    Chan, K Y; Byers, M R


    The ultrastructure and identification of WGA-HRP-labeled sensory receptors in the rat incisive papilla (the most anterior part of hard palate) were studied using semiserial thin sections. Various sensory receptors were organized according to three locations: dome region (ventral), chemosensory corpuscle region (medial to orifice of incisive canal), and lateral labium (apposing the incisive canal). In the dome region, the sensory receptors were localized in three sensory zones that were associated with surface ridges (one medial and two lateral). In each of these zones, intraepithelial receptor axons and Merkel receptors occurred in the epithelium, while simple unencapsulated corpuscles, glomerular-Meissner corpuscles, and incisive (encapsulated) corpuscles occurred in the lamina propria. In the chemosensory corpuscle region, chemosensory corpuscles and intraepithelial receptor axons were located in the epithelium, and incisive corpuscles were present in the lamina propria. In the lateral labium, only intraepithelial receptor axons were prominent. In all these sensory receptors, the preterminal axons and axon terminals were labeled with the tracer protein. In addition, some nonneuronal cells closely associated with the axon terminals were selectively labeled, e.g., terminal Schwann cells, lamellar Schwann cells, Merkel cells, corpuscular basal cells and chemosensory cells. Other adjacent cells were not labeled, e.g., unspecialized epithelial cells, capsular cells, corpuscular sustentacular cells, and fibroblasts. In both labeled axons and cells, WGA-HRP was incorporated into vesicles, tubules, and vacuolar organelles. The specific intercellular transfer of tracer protein may indicate trophic interactions between axon terminals and support cells in sensory receptors. The specific organization of multiple sensory receptors in the rat incisive papilla may provide a useful alternative system for studying somatosensory physiology.

  10. The axonal cytoskeleton : from organization to function

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kevenaar, Josta T; Hoogenraad, Casper C

    The axon is the single long fiber that extends from the neuron and transmits electrical signals away from the cell body. The neuronal cytoskeleton, composed of microtubules (MTs), actin filaments and neurofilaments, is not only required for axon formation and axonal transport but also provides the

  11. Slowing of axonal regeneration is correlated with increased axonal viscosity during aging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heidemann Steven R


    Full Text Available Abstract Background As we age, the speed of axonal regeneration declines. At the biophysical level, why this occurs is not well understood. Results To investigate we first measured the rate of axonal elongation of sensory neurons cultured from neonatal and adult rats. We found that neonatal axons grew 40% faster than adult axons (11.5 µm/hour vs. 8.2 µm/hour. To determine how the mechanical properties of axons change during maturation, we used force calibrated towing needles to measure the viscosity (stiffness and strength of substrate adhesion of neonatal and adult sensory axons. We found no significant difference in the strength of adhesions, but did find that adult axons were 3 times intrinsically stiffer than neonatal axons. Conclusions Taken together, our results suggest decreasing axonal stiffness may be part of an effective strategy to accelerate the regeneration of axons in the adult peripheral nervous system.

  12. Vestibular-somatosensory interactions: effects of passive whole-body rotation on somatosensory detection.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elisa Raffaella Ferrè

    Full Text Available Vestibular signals are strongly integrated with information from several other sensory modalities. For example, vestibular stimulation was reported to improve tactile detection. However, this improvement could reflect either a multimodal interaction or an indirect interaction driven by vestibular effects on spatial attention and orienting. Here we investigate whether natural vestibular activation induced by passive whole-body rotation influences tactile detection. In particular, we assessed the ability to detect faint tactile stimuli to the fingertips of the left and right hand during spatially congruent or incongruent rotations. We found that passive whole-body rotations significantly enhanced sensitivity to faint shocks, without affecting response bias. Critically, this enhancement of somatosensory sensitivity did not depend on the spatial congruency between the direction of rotation and the hand stimulated. Thus, our results support a multimodal interaction, likely in brain areas receiving both vestibular and somatosensory signals.

  13. Mechanosensor Channels in Mammalian Somatosensory Neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patrick Delmas


    Full Text Available Mechanoreceptive sensory neurons innervating the skin, skeletal muscles andviscera signal both innocuous and noxious information necessary for proprioception, touchand pain. These neurons are responsible for the transduction of mechanical stimuli intoaction potentials that propagate to the central nervous system. The ability of these cells todetect mechanical stimuli impinging on them relies on the presence of mechanosensitivechannels that transduce the external mechanical forces into electrical and chemical signals.Although a great deal of information regarding the molecular and biophysical properties ofmechanosensitive channels in prokaryotes has been accumulated over the past two decades,less is known about the mechanosensitive channels necessary for proprioception and thesenses of touch and pain. This review summarizes the most pertinent data onmechanosensitive channels of mammalian somatosensory neurons, focusing on theirproperties, pharmacology and putative identity.

  14. Somatosensory discrimination deficits following pediatric cerebral malaria. (United States)

    Dugbartey, A T; Spellacy, F J; Dugbartey, M T


    Pathologic studies of central nervous system damage in human falciparum malaria indicate primary localization in the cerebral white matter. We report a sensory-perceptual investigation of 20 Ghanaian children with a recent history of cerebral malaria who were age-, gender-, and education-matched with 20 healthy control subjects. Somatosensory examinations failed to show any evidence of hemianesthesia, pseudohemianesthesia, or extinction to double simultaneous tactile stimulation. While unilateral upper limb testing revealed intact unimanual tactile roughness discrimination, bimanual tactile discrimination, however, was significantly impaired in the cerebral malaria group. A strong negative correlation (r = -0.72) between coma duration and the bimanual tactile roughness discrimination test was also found. An inefficiency in the integrity of callosal fibers appear to account for our findings, although alternative subcortical mechanisms known to be involved in information transfer across the cerebral hemispheres may be compromised as well.

  15. Effects of mastication on human somatosensory processing: A study using somatosensory-evoked potentials. (United States)

    Nakata, Hiroki; Aoki, Mai; Sakamoto, Kiwako


    The aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of mastication on somatosensory processing using somatosensory-evoked potentials (SEPs). Fourteen healthy subjects received a median nerve stimulation at the right wrist under two conditions: Mastication and Control. SEPs were recorded in five sessions for approximately seven minutes: Pre, Post 1, 2, 3, and 4. Subjects were asked to chew gum for five minutes after one session in Mastication. Control included the same five sessions. The amplitudes and latencies of P14, N20, P25, N35, P45, and N60 components at C3', frontal N30 component at Fz, and P100 and N140 components at Pz were analyzed. The amplitude of P45-N60 was significantly smaller at Post 1, 2, 3, and 4 than at Pre in Control, but not in Mastication. The latency of P25 was significantly longer at Post 2, 3, and 4 than at Pre in Control, but not in Mastication. The latency of P100 was significantly longer at Post 2 than at Pre in Control, but not in Mastication. These results suggest the significant effects of mastication on the neural activity of human somatosensory processing. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd and Japan Neuroscience Society. All rights reserved.

  16. Axonal sprouting regulates myelin basic protein gene expression in denervated mouse hippocampus

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, M B; Poulsen, F R; Finsen, B


    to 35 days after transection of the entorhino-hippocampal perforant path axonal projection. In situ hybridization analysis showed that anterograde axonal and terminal degeneration lead to upregulated oligodendrocyte MBP mRNA expression starting between day 2 and day 4, in (1) the deep part of stratum...... axonal and terminal degeneration, myelin degenerative changes, microglial activation and axotomi-induced axonal sprouting. Oligodendrocyte MBP mRNA expression reached maximum in both these areas at day 7. MBP gene transcription remained constant in stratum radiatum, stratum pyramidale and stratum oriens...... of CA1, areas that were unaffected by perforant path transection. These results provide strong evidence that oligodendrocyte MBP gene expression can be regulated by axonal sprouting independently of microglial activation in the injured adult CNS....

  17. BIG1 is required for the survival of deep layer neurons, neuronal polarity, and the formation of axonal tracts between the thalamus and neocortex in developing brain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jia-Jie Teoh

    Full Text Available BIG1, an activator protein of the small GTPase, Arf, and encoded by the Arfgef1 gene, is one of candidate genes for epileptic encephalopathy. To know the involvement of BIG1 in epileptic encephalopathy, we analyzed BIG1-deficient mice and found that BIG1 regulates neurite outgrowth and brain development in vitro and in vivo. The loss of BIG1 decreased the size of the neocortex and hippocampus. In BIG1-deficient mice, the neuronal progenitor cells (NPCs and the interneurons were unaffected. However, Tbr1+ and Ctip2+ deep layer (DL neurons showed spatial-temporal dependent apoptosis. This apoptosis gradually progressed from the piriform cortex (PIR, peaked in the neocortex, and then progressed into the hippocampus from embryonic day 13.5 (E13.5 to E17.5. The upper layer (UL and DL order in the neocortex was maintained in BIG1-deficient mice, but the excitatory neurons tended to accumulate before their destination layers. Further pulse-chase migration assay showed that the migration defect was non-cell autonomous and secondary to the progression of apoptosis into the BIG1-deficient neocortex after E15.5. In BIG1-deficient mice, we observed an ectopic projection of corticothalamic axons from the primary somatosensory cortex (S1 into the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN. The thalamocortical axons were unable to cross the diencephalon-telencephalon boundary (DTB. In vitro, BIG1-deficient neurons showed a delay in neuronal polarization. BIG1-deficient neurons were also hypersensitive to low dose glutamate (5 μM, and died via apoptosis. This study showed the role of BIG1 in the survival of DL neurons in developing embryonic brain and in the generation of neuronal polarity.

  18. Clinical application of somatosensory amplification in psychosomatic medicine

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    Nakao Mutsuhiro


    Full Text Available Abstract Many patients with somatoform disorders are frequently encountered in psychosomatic clinics as well as in primary care clinics. To assess such patients objectively, the concept of somatosensory amplification may be useful. Somatosensory amplification refers to the tendency to experience a somatic sensation as intense, noxious, and disturbing. It may have a role in a variety of medical conditions characterized by somatic symptoms that are disproportionate to demonstrable organ pathology. It may also explain some of the variability in somatic symptomatology found among different patients with the same serious medical disorder. It has been assessed with a self-report questionnaire, the Somatosensory Amplification Scale. This instrument was developed in a clinical setting in the U.S., and the reliability and validity of the Japanese and Turkish versions have been confirmed as well. Many studies have attempted to clarify the specific role of somatosensory amplification as a pathogenic mechanism in somatization. It has been reported that somatosensory amplification does not correlate with heightened sensitivity to bodily sensations and that emotional reactivity exerts its influence on somatization via a negatively biased reporting style. According to our recent electroencephalographic study, somatosensory amplification appears to reflect some aspects of long-latency cognitive processing rather than short-latency interoceptive sensitivity. The concept of somatosensory amplification can be useful as an indicator of somatization in the therapy of a broad range of disorders, from impaired self-awareness to various psychiatric disorders. It also provides useful information for choosing appropriate pharmacological or psychological therapy. While somatosensory amplification has a role in the presentation of somatic symptoms, it is closely associated with other factors, namely, anxiety, depression, and alexithymia that may also influence the same

  19. Making sense out of spinal cord somatosensory development (United States)

    Seal, Rebecca P.


    The spinal cord integrates and relays somatosensory input, leading to complex motor responses. Research over the past couple of decades has identified transcription factor networks that function during development to define and instruct the generation of diverse neuronal populations within the spinal cord. A number of studies have now started to connect these developmentally defined populations with their roles in somatosensory circuits. Here, we review our current understanding of how neuronal diversity in the dorsal spinal cord is generated and we discuss the logic underlying how these neurons form the basis of somatosensory circuits. PMID:27702783

  20. Feedforward somatosensory inhibition is normal in cervical dystonia. (United States)

    Ferrè, Elisa R; Ganos, Christos; Bhatia, Kailash P; Haggard, Patrick


    Insufficient cortical inhibition is a key pathophysiological finding in dystonia. Subliminal sensory stimuli were reported to transiently inhibit somatosensory processing. Here we investigated whether such subliminal feedforward inhibition is reduced in patients with cervical dystonia. Sixteen cervical dystonia patients and 16 matched healthy controls performed a somatosensory detection task. We measured the drop in sensitivity to detect a threshold-level digital nerve shock when it was preceded by a subliminal conditioning shock, compared to when it was not. Subliminal conditioning shocks reduced sensitivity to threshold stimuli to a similar extent in both patients and controls, suggesting that somatosensory subliminal feedforward inhibition is normal in cervical dystonia. Somatosensory feedforward inhibition was normal in this group of cervical dystonia patients. Our results qualify previous concepts of a general dystonic deficit in sensorimotor inhibitory processing. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Influence of dopaminergically mediated reward on somatosensory decision-making.

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    Burkhard Pleger


    Full Text Available Reward-related dopaminergic influences on learning and overt behaviour are well established, but any influence on sensory decision-making is largely unknown. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI while participants judged electric somatosensory stimuli on one hand or other, before being rewarded for correct performance at trial end via a visual signal, at one of four anticipated financial levels. Prior to the procedure, participants received either placebo (saline, a dopamine agonist (levodopa, or an antagonist (haloperidol.higher anticipated reward improved tactile decisions. Visually signalled reward reactivated primary somatosensory cortex for the judged hand, more strongly for higher reward. After receiving a higher reward on one trial, somatosensory activations and decisions were enhanced on the next trial. These behavioural and neural effects were all enhanced by levodopa and attenuated by haloperidol, indicating dopaminergic dependency. Dopaminergic reward-related influences extend even to early somatosensory cortex and sensory decision-making.

  2. Reorganization of the Human Somatosensory Cortex in Hand Dystonia

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    Maria Jose Catalan


    Full Text Available Background and Purpose: Abnormalities of finger representations in the somatosensory cortex have been identified in patients with focal hand dystonia. Measuring blood flow with positron emission tomography (PET can be use to demonstrate functional localization of receptive fields. Methods: A vibratory stimulus was applied to the right thumb and little finger of six healthy volunteers and six patients with focal hand dystonia to map their receptive fields using H215O PET. Results: The cortical finger representations in the primary somatosensory cortex were closer to each other in patients than in normal subjects. No abnormalities were found in secondary somatosensory cortex, but the somatotopy there is less well distinguished. Conclusions: These data confirm prior electrophysiological and functional neuroimaging observations showing abnormalities of finger representations in somatosensory cortex of patients with focal hand dystonia.

  3. Genetic influence demonstrated for MEG-recorded somatosensory evoked responses

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van 't Ent, D.; van Soelen, I.L.C.; Stam, K.J.; de Geus, E.J.C.; Boomsma, D.I.


    We tested for a genetic influence on magnetoencephalogram (MEG)-recorded somatosensory evoked fields (SEFs) in 20 monozygotic (MZ) and 14 dizygotic (DZ) twin pairs. Previous electroencephalogram (EEG) studies that demonstrated a genetic contribution to evoked responses generally focused on

  4. Somatosensory evoked potentials in children with autism | Azouz ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    SSEPs) changesamong children with autism, and their relation to somatosensory manifestations and severity of autism. Subjects: Thirty children with autism aged 2–12 years were included in the study, all of them fulfilling criteria of the Diagnostic ...

  5. The Drosophila HEM-2/NAP1 homolog KETTE controls axonal pathfinding and cytoskeletal organization. (United States)

    Hummel, T; Leifker, K; Klämbt, C


    In Drosophila, the correct formation of the segmental commissures depends on neuron-glial interactions at the midline. The VUM midline neurons extend axons along which glial cells migrate in between anterior and posterior commissures. Here, we show that the gene kette is required for the normal projection of the VUM axons and subsequently disrupts glial migration. Axonal projection defects are also found for many other moto- and interneurons. In addition, kette affects the cell morphology of mesodermal and epidermal derivatives, which show an abnormal actin cytoskeleton. The KETTE protein is homologous to the transmembrane protein HEM-2/NAP1 evolutionary conserved from worms to vertebrates. In vitro analysis has shown a specific interaction of the vertebrate HEM-2/NAP1 with the SH2-SH3 adapter protein NCK and the small GTPase RAC1, which both have been implicated in regulating cytoskeleton organization and axonal growth. Hypomorphic kette mutations lead to axonal defects similar to mutations in the Drosophila NCK homolog dreadlocks. Furthermore, we show that kette and dock mutants genetically interact. NCK is thought to interact with the small G proteins RAC1 and CDC42, which play a role in axonal growth. In line with these observations, a kette phenocopy can be obtained following directed expression of mutant DCDC42 or DRAC1 in the CNS midline. In addition, the kette mutant phenotype can be partially rescued by expression of an activated DRAC1 transgene. Our data suggest an important role of the HEM-2 protein in cytoskeletal organization during axonal pathfinding.

  6. Axonal degeneration stimulates the formation of NG2+ cells and oligodendrocytes in the mouse

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Helle Hvilsted; Ladeby, Rune; Drøjdahl, Nina


    the response of the NG2+ cells to the different components of demyelinating pathology, we investigated the response of adult NG2+ cells to axonal degeneration in the absence of primary myelin or oligodendrocyte pathology. Axonal degeneration was induced in the hippocampal dentate gyrus of adult mice...... by transection of the entorhino-dentate perforant path projection. The acutely induced degeneration of axons and terminals resulted in a prompt response of NG2+ cells, consisting of morphological transformation, cellular proliferation, and upregulation of NG2 expression days 2-3 after surgery. This was followed...

  7. Elucidation of axonal transport by radioautography

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Droz, Bernard.


    Radioautography permits to distinguish various pathways within the axons: the axoplasm which includes soluble enzymes and constituents of the cytoskeleton moving with slow axoplasmic flow; the mitochondria which are conveyed as organelles; the smooth endoplasmic reticulum which ensures the fast axonal transport of membrane constituents delivered to axolemma, synaptic vesicles, presynaptic membranes or mitochondria. Furthermore radioautography makes it possible to visualize intercellular exchanges of molecules between axon and glia

  8. Frequency specific modulation of human somatosensory cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matteo eFeurra


    Full Text Available Oscillatory neuronal activities are commonly observed in response to sensory stimulation. However, their functional roles are still the subject of debate. One way to probe the roles of oscillatory neural activities is to deliver alternating current to the cortex at biologically relevant frequencies and examine whether such stimulation influences perception and cognition. In this study, we tested whether transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS over the primary somatosensory cortex (SI could elicit tactile sensations in humans in a frequency dependent manner. We tested the effectiveness of tACS over SI at frequency bands ranging from 2 to 70 Hz. Our results show that stimulation in alpha (10-14 Hz and high gamma (52-70 Hz frequency range produces a tactile sensation in the contralateral hand. A weaker effect was also observed for beta (16-20 Hz stimulation. These findings highlight the frequency-dependency of effective tACS over SI with the effective frequencies corresponding to those observed in previous EEG/MEG studies of tactile perception. Our present study suggests that tACS could be used as a powerful online stimulation technique to reveal the causal roles of oscillatory brain activities.

  9. Pathophysiology of somatosensory abnormalities in Parkinson disease. (United States)

    Conte, Antonella; Khan, Nashaba; Defazio, Giovanni; Rothwell, John C; Berardelli, Alfredo


    Changes in sensory function that have been described in patients with Parkinson disease (PD) can be either 'pure' disorders of conscious perception such as elevations in sensory threshold, or disorders of sensorimotor integration, in which the interaction between sensory input and motor output is altered. In this article, we review the extensive evidence for disrupted tactile, nociceptive, thermal and proprioceptive sensations in PD, as well as the influences exerted on these sensations by dopaminergic therapy and deep brain stimulation. We argue that abnormal spatial and temporal processing of sensory information produces incorrect signals for the preparation and execution of voluntary movement. Sensory deficits are likely to be a consequence of the dopaminergic denervation of the basal ganglia that is the hallmark of PD. A possible mechanism to account for somatosensory deficits is one in which disease-related dopaminergic denervation leads to a loss of response specificity, resulting in transmission of noisier and less-differentiated information to cortical regions. Changes in pain perception might have a different explanation, possibly involving disease-related effects outside the basal ganglia, including involvement of peripheral pain receptors, as well as structures such as the periaqueductal grey matter and non-dopaminergic neurotransmitter systems.

  10. Critical Factors for Inducing Curved Somatosensory Saccades

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    Tamami Nakano


    Full Text Available We are able to make a saccade toward a tactile stimuli to one hand, but trajectories of many saccades curved markedly when the arms were crossed (Groh & Sparks, 2006. However, it remains unknown why some curved and others did not. We therefore examined critical factors for inducing the curved somatosensory saccades. Participants made a saccade as soon as possible from a central fixation point toward a tactile stimulus delivered to one of the two hands, and switched between arms-crossed and arms-uncrossed postures every 6 trials. Trajectories were generally straight when the arms were uncrossed, but all participants made curved saccades when the arms were crossed (12–64%. We found that the probability of curved saccades depended critically on the onset latency: the probability was less than 5% when the latency was larger than 250 ms, but the probability increased up to 70–80% when the onset latency was 160 ms. This relationship was shared across participants. The results suggest that a touch in the arms-crossed posture was always mapped to the wrong hand in the initial phase up to 160 ms, and then remapped to the correct hand during the next 100 ms by some fundamental neural mechanisms shared across participants.

  11. Motor axon excitability during Wallerian degeneration

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Moldovan, Mihai; Alvarez, Susana; Krarup, Christian


    Axonal loss and degeneration are major factors in determining long-term outcome in patients with peripheral nerve disorders or injury. Following loss of axonal continuity, the isolated nerve stump distal to the lesion undergoes Wallerian degeneration in several phases. In the initial 'latent' phase......, action potential propagation and structural integrity of the distal segment are maintained. The aim of this study was to investigate in vivo the changes in membrane function of motor axons during the 'latent' phase of Wallerian degeneration. Multiple indices of axonal excitability of the tibial nerve...

  12. Axonal regeneration in zebrafish spinal cord (United States)

    Hui, Subhra Prakash


    Abstract In the present review we discuss two interrelated events—axonal damage and repair—known to occur after spinal cord injury (SCI) in the zebrafish. Adult zebrafish are capable of regenerating axonal tracts and can restore full functionality after SCI. Unlike fish, axon regeneration in the adult mammalian central nervous system is extremely limited. As a consequence of an injury there is very little repair of disengaged axons and therefore functional deficit persists after SCI in adult mammals. In contrast, peripheral nervous system axons readily regenerate following injury and hence allow functional recovery both in mammals and fish. A better mechanistic understanding of these three scenarios could provide a more comprehensive insight into the success or failure of axonal regeneration after SCI. This review summarizes the present understanding of the cellular and molecular basis of axonal regeneration, in both the peripheral nervous system and the central nervous system, and large scale gene expression analysis is used to focus on different events during regeneration. The discovery and identification of genes involved in zebrafish spinal cord regeneration and subsequent functional experimentation will provide more insight into the endogenous mechanism of myelination and remyelination. Furthermore, precise knowledge of the mechanism underlying the extraordinary axonal regeneration process in zebrafish will also allow us to unravel the potential therapeutic strategies to be implemented for enhancing regrowth and remyelination of axons in mammals. PMID:29721326

  13. Action Potential Dynamics in Fine Axons Probed with an Axonally Targeted Optical Voltage Sensor. (United States)

    Ma, Yihe; Bayguinov, Peter O; Jackson, Meyer B


    The complex and malleable conduction properties of axons determine how action potentials propagate through extensive axonal arbors to reach synaptic terminals. The excitability of axonal membranes plays a major role in neural circuit function, but because most axons are too thin for conventional electrical recording, their properties remain largely unexplored. To overcome this obstacle, we used a genetically encoded hybrid voltage sensor (hVOS) harboring an axonal targeting motif. Expressing this probe in transgenic mice enabled us to monitor voltage changes optically in two populations of axons in hippocampal slices, the large axons of dentate granule cells (mossy fibers) in the stratum lucidum of the CA3 region and the much finer axons of hilar mossy cells in the inner molecular layer of the dentate gyrus. Action potentials propagated with distinct velocities in each type of axon. Repetitive firing broadened action potentials in both populations, but at an intermediate frequency the degree of broadening differed. Repetitive firing also attenuated action potential amplitudes in both mossy cell and granule cell axons. These results indicate that the features of use-dependent action potential broadening, and possible failure, observed previously in large nerve terminals also appear in much finer unmyelinated axons. Subtle differences in the frequency dependences could influence the propagation of activity through different pathways to excite different populations of neurons. The axonally targeted hVOS probe used here opens up the diverse repertoire of neuronal processes to detailed biophysical study.

  14. Pudendal somatosensory evoked potentials in normal women

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Geraldo A. Cavalcanti


    Full Text Available OBJECTIVE: Somatosensory evoked potential (SSEP is an electrophysiological test used to evaluate sensory innervations in peripheral and central neuropathies. Pudendal SSEP has been studied in dysfunctions related to the lower urinary tract and pelvic floor. Although some authors have already described technical details pertaining to the method, the standardization and the influence of physiological variables in normative values have not yet been established, especially for women. The aim of the study was to describe normal values of the pudendal SSEP and to compare technical details with those described by other authors. MATERIALS AND METHODS: The clitoral sensory threshold and pudendal SSEP latency was accomplished in 38 normal volunteers. The results obtained from stimulation performed on each side of the clitoris were compared to ages, body mass index (BMI and number of pregnancies. RESULTS: The values of clitoral sensory threshold and P1 latency with clitoral left stimulation were respectively, 3.64 ± 1.01 mA and 37.68 ± 2.60 ms. Results obtained with clitoral right stimulation were 3.84 ± 1.53 mA and 37.42 ± 3.12 ms, respectively. There were no correlations between clitoral sensory threshold and P1 latency with age, BMI or height of the volunteers. A significant difference was found in P1 latency between nulliparous women and volunteers who had been previously submitted to cesarean section. CONCLUSIONS: The SSEP latency represents an accessible and reproducible method to investigate the afferent pathways from the genitourinary tract. These results could be used as normative values in studies involving genitourinary neuropathies in order to better clarify voiding and sexual dysfunctions in females.

  15. Differential effects of myostatin deficiency on motor and sensory axons. (United States)

    Jones, Maria R; Villalón, Eric; Northcutt, Adam J; Calcutt, Nigel A; Garcia, Michael L


    Deletion of myostatin in mice (MSTN -/- ) alters structural properties of peripheral axons. However, properties like axon diameter and myelin thickness were analyzed in mixed nerves, so it is unclear whether loss of myostatin affects motor, sensory, or both types of axons. Using the MSTN -/- mouse model, we analyzed the effects of increasing the number of muscle fibers on axon diameter, myelin thickness, and internode length in motor and sensory axons. Axon diameter and myelin thickness were increased in motor axons of MSTN -/- mice without affecting internode length or axon number. The number of sensory axons was increased without affecting their structural properties. These results suggest that motor and sensory axons establish structural properties by independent mechanisms. Moreover, in motor axons, instructive cues from the neuromuscular junction may play a role in co-regulating axon diameter and myelin thickness, whereas internode length is established independently. Muscle Nerve 56: E100-E107, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  16. Axon-Axon Interactions Regulate Topographic Optic Tract Sorting via CYFIP2-Dependent WAVE Complex Function. (United States)

    Cioni, Jean-Michel; Wong, Hovy Ho-Wai; Bressan, Dario; Kodama, Lay; Harris, William A; Holt, Christine E


    The axons of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) are topographically sorted before they arrive at the optic tectum. This pre-target sorting, typical of axon tracts throughout the brain, is poorly understood. Here, we show that cytoplasmic FMR1-interacting proteins (CYFIPs) fulfill non-redundant functions in RGCs, with CYFIP1 mediating axon growth and CYFIP2 specifically involved in axon sorting. We find that CYFIP2 mediates homotypic and heterotypic contact-triggered fasciculation and repulsion responses between dorsal and ventral axons. CYFIP2 associates with transporting ribonucleoprotein particles in axons and regulates translation. Axon-axon contact stimulates CYFIP2 to move into growth cones where it joins the actin nucleating WAVE regulatory complex (WRC) in the periphery and regulates actin remodeling and filopodial dynamics. CYFIP2's function in axon sorting is mediated by its binding to the WRC but not its translational regulation. Together, these findings uncover CYFIP2 as a key regulatory link between axon-axon interactions, filopodial dynamics, and optic tract sorting. Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Dynamics of mitochondrial transport in axons

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    Robert Francis Niescier


    Full Text Available The polarized structure and long neurites of neurons pose a unique challenge for proper mitochondrial distribution. It is widely accepted that mitochondria move from the cell body to axon ends and vice versa; however, we have found that mitochondria originating from the axon ends moving in the retrograde direction never reach to the cell body, and only a limited number of mitochondria moving in the anterograde direction from the cell body arrive at the axon ends of mouse hippocampal neurons. Furthermore, we have derived a mathematical formula using the Fokker-Planck equation to characterize features of mitochondrial transport, and the equation could determine altered mitochondrial transport in axons overexpressing parkin. Our analysis will provide new insights into the dynamics of mitochondrial transport in axons of normal and unhealthy neurons.

  18. Postnatal Development of CB1 Receptor Expression in Rodent Somatosensory Cortex (United States)

    Deshmukh, Suvarna; Onozuka, Kaori; Bender, Kevin J.; Bender, Vanessa A.; Lutz, Beat; Mackie, Ken; Feldman, Daniel E.


    Endocannabinoids are powerful modulators of synaptic transmission that act on presynaptic cannabinoid receptors. Cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1) is the dominant receptor in the CNS, and is present in many brain regions, including sensory cortex. To investigate the potential role of CB1 receptors in cortical development, we examined the developmental expression of CB1 in rodent primary somatosensory (barrel) cortex, using immunohistochemistry with a CB1-specific antibody. We found that before postnatal day (P) 6, CB1 receptor staining was present exclusively in the cortical white matter, and that CB1 staining appeared in the grey matter between P6 and P20 in a specific laminar pattern. CB1 staining was confined to axons, and was most prominent in cortical layers 2/3, 5a, and 6. CB1 null (−/−) mice showed altered anatomical barrel maps in layer 4, with enlarged inter-barrel septa, but normal barrel size. These results indicate that CB1 receptors are present in early postnatal development and influence development of sensory maps. PMID:17210229

  19. MEG reveals a fast pathway from somatosensory cortex to occipital areas via posterior parietal cortex in a blind subject

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas A Ioannides


    Full Text Available Cross-modal activity in visual cortex of blind subjects has been reported during performance of variety of non-visual tasks. A key unanswered question is through which pathways non-visual inputs are funneled to the visual cortex. Here we used tomographic analysis of single trial magnetoencephalography (MEG data recorded from one congenitally blind and two sighted subjects after stimulation of the left and right median nerves at three intensities: below sensory threshold, above sensory threshold and above motor threshold; the last sufficient to produce thumb twitching. We identified reproducible brain responses in the primary somatosensory (S1 and motor (M1 cortices at around 20 ms post-stimulus, which were very similar in sighted and blind subjects. Time-frequency analysis revealed strong 45 to 70 Hz activity at latencies of 20 to 50 ms in S1 and M1, and posterior parietal cortex Brodmann areas (BA 7 and 40, which compared to lower frequencies, were substantially more pronounced in the blind than the sighted subjects. Critically, at frequencies from α-band up to 100 Hz we found clear, strong and widespread responses in the visual cortex of the blind subject, which increased with the intensity of the somatosensory stimuli. Time-delayed mutual information (MI revealed that in blind subject the stimulus information is funneled from the early somatosensory to visual cortex through posterior parietal BA 7 and 40, projecting first to visual areas V5 and V3, and eventually V1. The flow of information through this pathway occured in stages characterized by convergence of activations into specific cortical regions. In sighted subjects, no linked activity was found that led from the somatosensory to the visual cortex through any of the studied brain regions. These results provide the first evidence from MEG that in blind subjects, tactile information is routed from primary somatosensory to occipital cortex via the posterior parietal cortex.

  20. MEG reveals a fast pathway from somatosensory cortex to occipital areas via posterior parietal cortex in a blind subject. (United States)

    Ioannides, Andreas A; Liu, Lichan; Poghosyan, Vahe; Saridis, George A; Gjedde, Albert; Ptito, Maurice; Kupers, Ron


    Cross-modal activity in visual cortex of blind subjects has been reported during performance of variety of non-visual tasks. A key unanswered question is through which pathways non-visual inputs are funneled to the visual cortex. Here we used tomographic analysis of single trial magnetoencephalography (MEG) data recorded from one congenitally blind and two sighted subjects after stimulation of the left and right median nerves at three intensities: below sensory threshold, above sensory threshold and above motor threshold; the last sufficient to produce thumb twitching. We identified reproducible brain responses in the primary somatosensory (S1) and motor (M1) cortices at around 20 ms post-stimulus, which were very similar in sighted and blind subjects. Time-frequency analysis revealed strong 45-70 Hz activity at latencies of 20-50 ms in S1 and M1, and posterior parietal cortex Brodmann areas (BA) 7 and 40, which compared to lower frequencies, were substantially more pronounced in the blind than the sighted subjects. Critically, at frequencies from α-band up to 100 Hz we found clear, strong, and widespread responses in the visual cortex of the blind subject, which increased with the intensity of the somatosensory stimuli. Time-delayed mutual information (MI) revealed that in blind subject the stimulus information is funneled from the early somatosensory to visual cortex through posterior parietal BA 7 and 40, projecting first to visual areas V5 and V3, and eventually V1. The flow of information through this pathway occurred in stages characterized by convergence of activations into specific cortical regions. In sighted subjects, no linked activity was found that led from the somatosensory to the visual cortex through any of the studied brain regions. These results provide the first evidence from MEG that in blind subjects, tactile information is routed from primary somatosensory to occipital cortex via the posterior parietal cortex.

  1. Beta oscillations define discrete perceptual cycles in the somatosensory domain. (United States)

    Baumgarten, Thomas J; Schnitzler, Alfons; Lange, Joachim


    Whether seeing a movie, listening to a song, or feeling a breeze on the skin, we coherently experience these stimuli as continuous, seamless percepts. However, there are rare perceptual phenomena that argue against continuous perception but, instead, suggest discrete processing of sensory input. Empirical evidence supporting such a discrete mechanism, however, remains scarce and comes entirely from the visual domain. Here, we demonstrate compelling evidence for discrete perceptual sampling in the somatosensory domain. Using magnetoencephalography (MEG) and a tactile temporal discrimination task in humans, we find that oscillatory alpha- and low beta-band (8-20 Hz) cycles in primary somatosensory cortex represent neurophysiological correlates of discrete perceptual cycles. Our results agree with several theoretical concepts of discrete perceptual sampling and empirical evidence of perceptual cycles in the visual domain. Critically, these results show that discrete perceptual cycles are not domain-specific, and thus restricted to the visual domain, but extend to the somatosensory domain.

  2. Auditory-somatosensory temporal sensitivity improves when the somatosensory event is caused by voluntary body movement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Norimichi Kitagawa


    Full Text Available When we actively interact with the environment, it is crucial that we perceive a precise temporal relationship between our own actions and sensory effects to guide our body movements.Thus, we hypothesized that voluntary movements improve perceptual sensitivity to the temporal disparity between auditory and movement-related somatosensory events compared to when they are delivered passively to sensory receptors. In the voluntary condition, participants voluntarily tapped a button, and a noise burst was presented at various onset asynchronies relative to the button press. The participants made either 'sound-first' or 'touch-first' responses. We found that the performance of temporal order judgment (TOJ in the voluntary condition (as indexed by the just noticeable difference was significantly better (M=42.5 ms ±3.8 s.e.m than that when their finger was passively stimulated (passive condition: M=66.8 ms ±6.3 s.e.m. We further examined whether the performance improvement with voluntary action can be attributed to the prediction of the timing of the stimulation from sensory cues (sensory-based prediction, kinesthetic cues contained in voluntary action, and/or to the prediction of stimulation timing from the efference copy of the motor command (motor-based prediction. When the participant’s finger was moved passively to press the button (involuntary condition and when three noise bursts were presented before the target burst with regular intervals (predictable condition, the TOJ performance was not improved from that in the passive condition. These results suggest that the improvement in sensitivity to temporal disparity between somatosensory and auditory events caused by the voluntary action cannot be attributed to sensory-based prediction and kinesthetic cues. Rather, the prediction from the efference copy of the motor command would be crucial for improving the temporal sensitivity.

  3. The functional and anatomical dissection of somatosensory subpopulations using mouse genetics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claire E Le Pichon


    Full Text Available The word somatosensation comes from joining the Greek word for body (soma with a word for perception (sensation. Somatosensory neurons comprise the largest sensory system in mammals and have nerve endings coursing throughout the skin, viscera, muscle, and bone. Their cell bodies reside in a chain of ganglia adjacent to the dorsal spinal cord (the dorsal root ganglia and at the base of the skull (the trigeminal ganglia. While the neuronal cell bodies are intermingled within the ganglia, the somatosensory system is in reality composed of numerous sub-systems, each specialized to detect distinct stimuli, such as temperature and touch. Historically, somatosensory neurons have been classified using a diverse host of anatomical and physiological parameters, such as the size of the cell body, degree of myelination, histological labeling with markers, specialization of the nerve endings, projection patterns in the spinal cord and brainstem, receptive tuning, and conduction velocity of their action potentials. While useful, the picture that emerged was one of heterogeneity, with many markers at least partially overlapping. More recently, by capitalizing on advances in molecular techniques, researchers have identified specific ion channels and sensory receptors expressed in subsets of sensory neurons. These studies have proved invaluable as they allow genetic access to small subsets of neurons for further molecular dissection. Data being generated from transgenic mice favor the model whereby an array of dedicated neurons is responsible for selectively encoding different modalities. Here we review the current knowledge of the different sensory neuron subtypes in the mouse, the markers used to study them, and the neurogenetic strategies used to define their anatomical projections and functional roles.

  4. Asymmetric Functional Connectivity of the Contra- and Ipsilateral Secondary Somatosensory Cortex during Tactile Object Recognition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yinghua Yu


    Full Text Available In the somatosensory system, it is well known that the bilateral secondary somatosensory cortex (SII receives projections from the unilateral primary somatosensory cortex (SI, and the SII, in turn, sends feedback projections to SI. Most neuroimaging studies have clearly shown bilateral SII activation using only unilateral stimulation for both anatomical and functional connectivity across SII subregions. However, no study has unveiled differences in the functional connectivity of the contra- and ipsilateral SII network that relates to frontoparietal areas during tactile object recognition. Therefore, we used event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI and a delayed match-to-sample (DMS task to investigate the contributions of bilateral SII during tactile object recognition. In the fMRI experiment, 14 healthy subjects were presented with tactile angle stimuli on their right index finger and asked to encode three sample stimuli during the encoding phase and one test stimulus during the recognition phase. Then, the subjects indicated whether the angle of test stimulus was presented during the encoding phase. The results showed that contralateral (left SII activity was greater than ipsilateral (right SII activity during the encoding phase, but there was no difference during the recognition phase. A subsequent psycho-physiological interaction (PPI analysis revealed distinct connectivity from the contra- and ipsilateral SII to other regions. The left SII functionally connected to the left SI and right primary and premotor cortex, while the right SII functionally connected to the left posterior parietal cortex (PPC. Our findings suggest that in situations involving unilateral tactile object recognition, contra- and ipsilateral SII will induce an asymmetrical functional connectivity to other brain areas, which may occur by the hand contralateral effect of SII.

  5. Axonal transport and axon sprouting in the adult rat dentate gyrus: an autoradiographic study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Goldowitz, D.; Cotman, C.W.


    In response to an entorhinal lesion, the commissural and associational afferents to the dentate gyrus have been shown to expand beyond their normal terminal zone into the area denervated by the entorhinal lesion. The present study has investigated the axonal transport of [ 3 H]-labeled proteins in the commissural and associational projections following an entorhinal lesion. Injections of [ 3 H]proline, [ 3 H]leucine or [ 3 H)fucose were given in the vicinity of the commissural and associational cells of origin before, immediately subsequent to, or at 5 to 15 days after the entorhinal lesion. The disposition of previously- or newly-synthesized proteins was examined in the commissural and associational terminal field at different times after an entorhinal lesion by light-microscopic autoradiography. (author)

  6. Axonal transport and axon sprouting in the adult rat dentate gyrus: an autoradiographic study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Goldowitz, D; Cotman, C W [California Univ., Irvine (USA)


    In response to an entorhinal lesion, the commissural and associational afferents to the dentate gyrus have been shown to expand beyond their normal terminal zone into the area denervated by the entorhinal lesion. The present study has investigated the axonal transport of (/sup 3/H)-labeled proteins in the commissural and associational projections following an entorhinal lesion. Injections of (/sup 3/H)proline, (/sup 3/H)leucine or (/sup 3/H)fucose were given in the vicinity of the commissural and associational cells of origin before, immediately subsequent to, or at 5 to 15 days after the entorhinal lesion. The disposition of previously- or newly-synthesized proteins was examined in the commissural and associational terminal field at different times after an entorhinal lesion by light-microscopic autoradiography.

  7. Impaired somatosensory discrimination of shape in Parkinson's disease : Association with caudate nucleus dopaminergic function

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Weder, BJ; Leenders, KL; Vontobel, P; Nienhusmeier, M; Keel, A; Zaunbauer, W; Vonesch, T; Ludin, HP


    Tactile discrimination of macrogeometric objects in a two-alternative forced-choice procedure represents a demanding task involving somatosensory pathways and higher cognitive processing. The objects for somatosensory discrimination, i.e., rectangular parallelepipeds differing only in oblongness,

  8. Dynamics of target recognition by interstitial axon branching along developing cortical axons. (United States)

    Bastmeyer, M; O'Leary, D D


    Corticospinal axons innervate their midbrain, hindbrain, and spinal targets by extending collateral branches interstitially along their length. To establish that the axon shaft rather than the axonal growth cone is responsible for target recognition in this system, and to characterize the dynamics of interstitial branch formation, we have studied this process in an in vivo-like setting using slice cultures from neonatal mice containing the entire pathway of corticospinal axons. Corticospinal axons labeled with the dye 1,1'-dioctodecyl-3,3,3',3'-tetramethylindocarbocyanine perchlorate (or Dil) were imaged using time-lapse video microscopy of their pathway overlying the basilar pons, their major hindbrain target. The axon shaft millimeters behind the growth cone exhibits several dynamic behaviors, including the de novo formation of varicosities and filopodia-like extensions, and a behavior that we term "pulsation," which is characterized by a variable thickening and thining of short segments of the axon. An individual axon can have multiple sites of branching activity, with many of the branches being transient. These dynamic behaviors occur along the portion of the axon shaft overlying the basilar pons, but not just caudal to it. Once the collaterals extend into the pontine neuropil, they branch further in the neuropil, while the parent axon becomes quiescent. Thus, the branching activity is spatially restricted to specific portions of the axon, as well as temporally restricted to a relatively brief time window. These findings provide definitive evidence that collateral branches form de novo along corticospinal axons and establish that the process of target recognition in this system is a property of the axon shaft rather than the leading growth cone.

  9. Cargo distributions differentiate pathological axonal transport impairments. (United States)

    Mitchell, Cassie S; Lee, Robert H


    Axonal transport is an essential process in neurons, analogous to shipping goods, by which energetic and cellular building supplies are carried downstream (anterogradely) and wastes are carried upstream (retrogradely) by molecular motors, which act as cargo porters. Impairments in axonal transport have been linked to devastating and often lethal neurodegenerative diseases, such as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, Huntington's, and Alzheimer's. Axonal transport impairment types include a decrease in available motors for cargo transport (motor depletion), the presence of defective or non-functional motors (motor dilution), and the presence of increased or larger cargos (protein aggregation). An impediment to potential treatment identification has been the inability to determine what type(s) of axonal transport impairment candidates that could be present in a given disease. In this study, we utilize a computational model and common axonal transport experimental metrics to reveal the axonal transport impairment general characteristics or "signatures" that result from three general defect types of motor depletion, motor dilution, and protein aggregation. Our results not only provide a means to discern these general impairments types, they also reveal key dynamic and emergent features of axonal transport, which potentially underlie multiple impairment types. The identified characteristics, as well as the analytical method, can be used to help elucidate the axonal transport impairments observed in experimental and clinical data. For example, using the model-predicted defect signatures, we identify the defect candidates, which are most likely to be responsible for the axonal transport impairments in the G93A SOD1 mouse model of ALS. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Axonal inclusions in the crab Hemigrapsus nudus. (United States)

    Smith, R S


    Light microscopic examination of living giant axons from the walking legs of Hemigrapsus nudus revealed intra-axonal inclusions which were usually several tens of micrometers long and about 5 micron wide. The inclusions were filled with small light-scattering particles. The inclusions were shown, by thin section electron microscopy, to be composed largely 68% by volume) of mitochondria. Each inclusion was surrounded by membrane bounded spaces which are presumed to represent a part of the smooth endoplasmic reticulum. Similar inclusions were not found in the leg axons of a variety of other decapod crustaceans.

  11. Index finger somatosensory evoked potentials in blind Braille readers. (United States)

    Giriyappa, Dayananda; Subrahmanyam, Roopakala Mysore; Rangashetty, Srinivasa; Sharma, Rajeev


    Traditionally, vision has been considered the dominant modality in our multi-sensory perception of the surrounding world. Sensory input via non-visual tracts becomes of greater behavioural relevance in totally blind individuals to enable effective interaction with the world around them. These include audition and tactile perceptions, leading to an augmentation in these perceptions when compared with normal sighted individuals. The objective of the present work was to study the index finger somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) in totally blind and normal sighted individuals. SEPs were recorded in 15 Braille reading totally blind females and compared with 15 age-matched normal sighted females. Latency and amplitudes of somatosensory evoked potential waveforms (N9, N13, and N20) were measured. Amplitude of N20 SEP (a cortical somatosensory evoked potential) was significantly larger in the totally blind than in normal sighted individuals (p Braille reading right index finger. Totally blind Braille readers have larger N20 amplitude, suggestive of greater somatosensory cortical representation of the Braille reading index finger.

  12. Neural mechanisms of selective attention in the somatosensory system. (United States)

    Gomez-Ramirez, Manuel; Hysaj, Kristjana; Niebur, Ernst


    Selective attention allows organisms to extract behaviorally relevant information while ignoring distracting stimuli that compete for the limited resources of their central nervous systems. Attention is highly flexible, and it can be harnessed to select information based on sensory modality, within-modality feature(s), spatial location, object identity, and/or temporal properties. In this review, we discuss the body of work devoted to understanding mechanisms of selective attention in the somatosensory system. In particular, we describe the effects of attention on tactile behavior and corresponding neural activity in somatosensory cortex. Our focus is on neural mechanisms that select tactile stimuli based on their location on the body (somatotopic-based attention) or their sensory feature (feature-based attention). We highlight parallels between selection mechanisms in touch and other sensory systems and discuss several putative neural coding schemes employed by cortical populations to signal the behavioral relevance of sensory inputs. Specifically, we contrast the advantages and disadvantages of using a gain vs. spike-spike correlation code for representing attended sensory stimuli. We favor a neural network model of tactile attention that is composed of frontal, parietal, and subcortical areas that controls somatosensory cells encoding the relevant stimulus features to enable preferential processing throughout the somatosensory hierarchy. Our review is based on data from noninvasive electrophysiological and imaging data in humans as well as single-unit recordings in nonhuman primates. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  13. Discriminability of Single and Multichannel Intracortical Microstimulation within Somatosensory Cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cynthia Kay Overstreet


    Full Text Available The addition of tactile and proprioceptive feedback to neuroprosthetic limbs is expected to significantly improve the control of these devices. Intracortical microstimulation (ICMS of somatosensory cortex is a promising method of delivering this sensory feedback. To date, the main focus of somatosensory ICMS studies has been to deliver discriminable signals, corresponding to varying intensity, to a single location in cortex. However, multiple independent and simultaneous streams of sensory information will need to be encoded by ICMS to provide functionally relevant feedback for a neuroprosthetic limb (e.g. encoding contact events and pressure on multiple digits.In this study, we evaluated the ability of an awake, behaving non-human primate (Macaca mulatta to discriminate ICMS stimuli delivered on multiple electrodes spaced within somatosensory cortex. We delivered serial stimulation on single electrodes to evaluate the discriminability of sensations corresponding to ICMS of distinct cortical locations. Additionally, we delivered trains of multichannel stimulation, derived from a tactile sensor, synchronously across multiple electrodes. Our results indicate that discrimination of multiple ICMS stimuli is a challenging task, but that discriminable sensory percepts can be elicited by both single and multichannel ICMS on electrodes spaced within somatosensory cortex.

  14. Spinal N13 versus cortical N20 and dermatomal somatosensory ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Mohamed Imam


    Apr 6, 2013 ... Spinal N13 versus cortical N20 and dermatomal somatosensory .... recording point for the right upper limb stimulation and the. C40 for the left upper limb stimulation. The reference ..... Brain 1992;115:1209–34. 298. M. Imam ...

  15. Cortical somatosensory reorganization in children with spastic cerebral palsy: a multimodal neuroimaging study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)



    Full Text Available Although cerebral palsy (CP is among the most common causes of physical disability in early childhood, we know little about the functional and structural changes of this disorder in the developing brain. Here, we investigated with three different neuroimaging modalities (magnetoencephalography (MEG, diffusion tension imaging (DTI, and resting state fMRI whether spastic CP is associated with functional and anatomical abnormalities in the sensorimotor network. Ten children participated in the study: four with diplegic CP (DCP, three with hemiplegic CP (HCP, and three typically-developing (TD children. Somatosensory evoked fields (SEFs were recorded in response to pneumatic stimuli applied to digits D1, D3, and D5 of both hands. Several parameters of water diffusion were calculated from DTI between the thalamus and the precentral and postcentral gyri in both hemispheres. The sensorimotor resting state networks (RSNs were examined by using an independent component analysis method. Tactile stimulation of the fingers elicited the first prominent cortical response at ~50 ms, in all except one child, localized over the primary somatosensory cortex (S1. In five CP children, abnormal somatotopic organization was observed in the affected (or more affected hemisphere. Euclidean distances were markedly different between the two hemispheres in the HCP children, and between DCP and TD children for both hemispheres. DTI analysis revealed decreased fractional anisotropy and increased apparent diffusion coefficient for the thalamocortical pathways in the more affected compared to less affected hemisphere in CP children. Rs-fMRI results indicated absent and/or abnormal sensorimotor RSNs for children with HCP and DCP consistent with the severity and location of their lesions. Our findings suggest an abnormal somatosensory processing mechanism in the sensorimotor network of children with CP possibly as a result of diminished thalamocortical projections.

  16. Drug therapy for chronic idiopathic axonal polyneuropathy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vrancken, A. F. J. E.; van Schaik, I. N.; Hughes, R. A. C.; Notermans, N. C.


    BACKGROUND: Chronic idiopathic axonal polyneuropathy is an insidiously progressive sensory or sensorimotor polyneuropathy that affects elderly people. Although severe disability or handicap does not occur, it reduces quality of life. OBJECTIVES: To assess whether drug therapy for chronic idiopathic

  17. p27Kip1 Modulates Axonal Transport by Regulating α-Tubulin Acetyltransferase 1 Stability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giovanni Morelli


    Full Text Available Summary: The protein p27Kip1 plays roles that extend beyond cell-cycle regulation during cerebral cortex development, such as the regulation of neuronal migration and neurite branching via signaling pathways that converge on the actin and microtubule cytoskeletons. Microtubule-dependent transport is essential for the maturation of neurons and the establishment of neuronal connectivity though synapse formation and maintenance. Here, we show that p27Kip1 controls the transport of vesicles and organelles along the axon of mice cortical projection neurons in vitro. Moreover, suppression of the p27Kip1 ortholog, dacapo, in Drosophila melanogaster disrupts axonal transport in vivo, leading to the reduction of locomotor activity in third instar larvae and adult flies. At the molecular level, p27Kip1 stabilizes the α-tubulin acetyltransferase 1, thereby promoting the acetylation of microtubules, a post-translational modification required for proper axonal transport. : Morelli et al. report that p27Kip1/Dacapo modulates the acetylation of microtubules in axons via stabilization of ATAT1, the main α-tubulin acetyltransferase. Its conditional loss leads to the reduction of bidirectional axonal transport of vesicles and mitochondria in vitro in mice and in vivo in Drosophila. Keywords: p27Kip1, dacapo, acetylation, axonal transport, ATAT1, alpha-tubulin, HDAC6, Drosophila, mouse, cerebral cortex

  18. Modeling of axonal endoplasmic reticulum network by spastic paraplegia proteins. (United States)

    Yalçın, Belgin; Zhao, Lu; Stofanko, Martin; O'Sullivan, Niamh C; Kang, Zi Han; Roost, Annika; Thomas, Matthew R; Zaessinger, Sophie; Blard, Olivier; Patto, Alex L; Sohail, Anood; Baena, Valentina; Terasaki, Mark; O'Kane, Cahir J


    Axons contain a smooth tubular endoplasmic reticulum (ER) network that is thought to be continuous with ER throughout the neuron; the mechanisms that form this axonal network are unknown. Mutations affecting reticulon or REEP proteins, with intramembrane hairpin domains that model ER membranes, cause an axon degenerative disease, hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP). We show that Drosophila axons have a dynamic axonal ER network, which these proteins help to model. Loss of HSP hairpin proteins causes ER sheet expansion, partial loss of ER from distal motor axons, and occasional discontinuities in axonal ER. Ultrastructural analysis reveals an extensive ER network in axons, which shows larger and fewer tubules in larvae that lack reticulon and REEP proteins, consistent with loss of membrane curvature. Therefore HSP hairpin-containing proteins are required for shaping and continuity of axonal ER, thus suggesting roles for ER modeling in axon maintenance and function.

  19. Con-nectin axons and dendrites. (United States)

    Beaudoin, Gerard M J


    Unlike adherens junctions, synapses are asymmetric connections, usually between axons and dendrites, that rely on various cell adhesion molecules for structural stability and function. Two cell types of adhesion molecules found at adherens junctions, cadherins and nectins, are thought to mediate homophilic interaction between neighboring cells. In this issue, Togashi et al. (see p. 141) demonstrate that the differential localization of two heterophilic interacting nectins mediates the selective attraction of axons and dendrites in cooperation with cadherins.

  20. The L1-type cell adhesion molecule Neuroglian is necessary for maintenance of sensory axon advance in the Drosophila embryo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Veronica


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Cell adhesion molecules have long been implicated in the regulation of axon growth, but the precise cellular roles played by individual cell adhesion molecules and the molecular basis for their action are still not well understood. We have used the sensory system of the Drosophila embryo to shed light on the mechanism by which the L1-type cell adhesion molecule Neuroglian regulates axon growth. Results We have found a highly penetrant sensory axon stalling phenotype in neuroglian mutant embryos. Axons stalled at a variety of positions along their normal trajectory, but most commonly in the periphery some distance along the peripheral nerve. All lateral and dorsal cluster sensory neurons examined, except for the dorsal cluster neuron dbd, showed stalling. Sensory axons were never seen to project along inappropriate pathways in neuroglian mutants and stalled axons showed normal patterns of fasciculation within nerves. The growth cones of stalled axons possessed a simple morphology, similar to their appearance in wild-type embryos when advancing along nerves. Driving expression of the wild-type form of Neuroglian in sensory neurons alone rescued the neuroglian mutant phenotype of both pioneering and follower neurons. A partial rescue was achieved by expressing the Neuroglian extracellular domain. Over/mis-expression of Neuroglian in all neurons, oenocytes or trachea had no apparent effect on sensory axon growth. Conclusion We conclude that Neuroglian is necessary to maintain axon advance along axonal substrates, but is not required for initiation of axon outgrowth, axon fasciculation or recognition of correct growth substrates. Expression of Neuroglian in sensory neurons alone is sufficient to promote axon advance and the intracellular region of the molecule is largely dispensable for this function. It is unlikely, therefore, that Nrg acts as a molecular 'clutch' to couple adhesion of F-actin within the growth cone to the

  1. Dynamics of oligodendrocyte responses to anterograde axonal (Wallerian) and terminal degeneration in normal and TNF-transgenic mice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drøjdahl, Nina; Fenger, Christina; Nielsen, Helle H


    degeneration and lesion-induced axonal sprouting in the hippocampal dentate gyrus in TNF-transgenic mice with the response in genetically normal mice. Transectioning of the entorhino-dentate perforant path axonal projection increased hippocampal TNF mRNA expression in both types of mice, but to significantly...... larger levels in the TNF-transgenics. At 5 days after axonal transection, numbers of oligodendrocytes and myelin basic protein (MBP) mRNA expression in the denervated dentate gyrus in TNF-transgenic mice had increased to the same extent as in nontransgenic littermates. At this time, transgenics showed...

  2. EFA6 regulates selective polarised transport and axon regeneration from the axon initial segment

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Eva, R.; Koseki, H.; Kanamarlapudi, V.; Fawcett, James


    Roč. 130, č. 21 (2017), s. 3663-3675 ISSN 0021-9533 Institutional support: RVO:68378041 Keywords : axon regeneration * axon transport * neuronal polarisation Subject RIV: FH - Neurology OBOR OECD: Neuroscience s (including psychophysiology Impact factor: 4.431, year: 2016

  3. Axon initial segment Kv1 channels control axonal action potential waveform and synaptic efficacy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kole, Maarten H. P.; Letzkus, Johannes J.; Stuart, Greg J.


    Action potentials are binary signals that transmit information via their rate and temporal pattern. In this context, the axon is thought of as a transmission line, devoid of a role in neuronal computation. Here, we show a highly localized role of axonal Kv1 potassium channels in shaping the action

  4. Weak but Critical Links between Primary Somatosensory Centers and Motor Cortex during Movement

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pengxu Wei


    Full Text Available Motor performance is improved by stimulation of the agonist muscle during movement. However, related brain mechanisms remain unknown. In this work, we perform a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI study in 21 healthy subjects under three different conditions: (1 movement of right ankle alone; (2 movement and simultaneous stimulation of the agonist muscle; or (3 movement and simultaneous stimulation of a control area. We constructed weighted brain networks for each condition by using functional connectivity. Network features were analyzed using graph theoretical approaches. We found that: (1 the second condition evokes the strongest and most widespread brain activations (5147 vs. 4419 and 2320 activated voxels; and (2 this condition also induces a unique network layout and changes hubs and the modular structure of the brain motor network by activating the most “silent” links between primary somatosensory centers and the motor cortex, particularly weak links from the thalamus to the left primary motor cortex (M1. Significant statistical differences were found when the strength values of the right cerebellum (P < 0.001 or the left thalamus (P = 0.006 were compared among the three conditions. Over the years, studies reported a small number of projections from the thalamus to the motor cortex. This is the first work to present functions of these pathways. These findings reveal mechanisms for enhancing motor function with somatosensory stimulation, and suggest that network function cannot be thoroughly understood when weak ties are disregarded.

  5. Increased mitochondrial content in remyelinated axons: implications for multiple sclerosis (United States)

    Zambonin, Jessica L.; Zhao, Chao; Ohno, Nobuhiko; Campbell, Graham R.; Engeham, Sarah; Ziabreva, Iryna; Schwarz, Nadine; Lee, Sok Ee; Frischer, Josa M.; Turnbull, Doug M.; Trapp, Bruce D.; Lassmann, Hans; Franklin, Robin J. M.


    Mitochondrial content within axons increases following demyelination in the central nervous system, presumably as a response to the changes in energy needs of axons imposed by redistribution of sodium channels. Myelin sheaths can be restored in demyelinated axons and remyelination in some multiple sclerosis lesions is extensive, while in others it is incomplete or absent. The effects of remyelination on axonal mitochondrial content in multiple sclerosis, particularly whether remyelination completely reverses the mitochondrial changes that follow demyelination, are currently unknown. In this study, we analysed axonal mitochondria within demyelinated, remyelinated and myelinated axons in post-mortem tissue from patients with multiple sclerosis and controls, as well as in experimental models of demyelination and remyelination, in vivo and in vitro. Immunofluorescent labelling of mitochondria (porin, a voltage-dependent anion channel expressed on all mitochondria) and axons (neurofilament), and ultrastructural imaging showed that in both multiple sclerosis and experimental demyelination, mitochondrial content within remyelinated axons was significantly less than in acutely and chronically demyelinated axons but more numerous than in myelinated axons. The greater mitochondrial content within remyelinated, compared with myelinated, axons was due to an increase in density of porin elements whereas increase in size accounted for the change observed in demyelinated axons. The increase in mitochondrial content in remyelinated axons was associated with an increase in mitochondrial respiratory chain complex IV activity. In vitro studies showed a significant increase in the number of stationary mitochondria in remyelinated compared with myelinated and demyelinated axons. The number of mobile mitochondria in remyelinated axons did not significantly differ from myelinated axons, although significantly greater than in demyelinated axons. Our neuropathological data and findings in

  6. Epigenetic regulation of axon and dendrite growth

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ephraim F Trakhtenberg


    Full Text Available Neuroregenerative therapies for central nervous system (CNS injury, neurodegenerative disease, or stroke require axons of damaged neurons to grow and reinnervate their targets. However, mature mammalian CNS neurons do not regenerate their axons, limiting recovery in these diseases (Yiu and He, 2006. CNS’ regenerative failure may be attributable to the development of an inhibitory CNS environment by glial-associated inhibitory molecules (Yiu and He, 2006, and by various cell-autonomous factors (Sun and He, 2010. Intrinsic axon growth ability also declines developmentally (Li et al., 1995; Goldberg et al., 2002; Bouslama-Oueghlani et al., 2003; Blackmore and Letourneau, 2006 and is dependent on transcription (Moore et al., 2009. Although neurons’ intrinsic capacity for axon growth may depend in part on the panoply of expressed transcription factors (Moore and Goldberg, 2011, epigenetic factors such as the accessibility of DNA and organization of chromatin are required for downstream genes to be transcribed. Thus a potential approach to overcoming regenerative failure focuses on the epigenetic mechanisms regulating regenerative gene expression in the CNS. Here we review molecular mechanisms regulating the epigenetic state of DNA through chromatin modifications, their implications for regulating axon and dendrite growth, and important new directions for this field of study.

  7. Afferent projections to the deep mesencephalic nucleus in the rat

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Veazey, R.B.; Severin, C.M.


    Afferent projections to the deep mesencephalic nucleus (DMN) of the rat were demonstrated with axonal transport techniques. Potential sources for projections to the DMN were first identified by injecting the nucleus with HRP and examining the cervical spinal cord, brain stem, and cortex for retrogradely labeled neurons. Areas consistently labeled were then injected with a tritiated radioisotope, the tissue processed for autoradiography, and the DMN examined for anterograde labeling. Afferent projections to the medial and/or lateral parts of the DMN were found to originate from a number of spinal, bulbar, and cortical centers. Rostral brain centers projecting to both medial and lateral parts of the DMN include the ipsilateral motor and somatosensory cortex, the entopeduncular nucleus, and zona incerta. at the level of the midbrain, the ipsilateral substantia nigra and contralateral DMN likewise project to the DMN. Furthermore, the ipsilateral superior colliculus projects to the DMN, involving mainly the lateral part of the nucleus. Afferents from caudal centers include bilateral projections from the sensory nucleus of the trigeminal complex and the nucleus medulla oblongata centralis, as well as from the contralateral dentate nucleus. The projections from the trigeminal complex and nucleus medullae oblongatae centralis terminate in the intermediate and medial parts of the DMN, whereas projections from the contralateral dentate nucleus terminate mainly in its lateral part. In general, the afferent connections of the DMN arise from diverse areas of the brain. Although most of these projections distribute throughout the entire extent of the DMN, some of them project mainly to either medial or lateral parts of the nucleus, thus suggesting that the organization of the DMN is comparable, at least in part, to that of the reticular formation of the pons and medulla, a region in which hodological differences between medial and lateral subdivisions are known to exist

  8. A new psychometric questionnaire for reporting of somatosensory percepts (United States)

    Kim, L. H.; McLeod, R. S.; Kiss, Z. H. T.


    Objective. There have been remarkable advances over the past decade in neural prostheses to restore lost motor function. However, restoration of somatosensory feedback, which is essential for fine motor control and user acceptance, has lagged behind. With an increasing interest in using electrical stimulation to restore somatosensory sensations within the peripheral (PNS) and central nervous systems (CNS), it is critical to characterize the percepts evoked by electrical stimulation in a standardized manner with a validated psychometric questionnaire. This will allow comparison of results from applications at various nervous system levels in multiple settings. Approach. We compiled a summary of published reports of somatosensory percepts that were elicited by electrical stimulation in humans and used these to develop a new psychometric questionnaire. Results. This new questionnaire was able to characterize subjective evoked sensations with good test-retest reliability (Spearman’s correlation coefficients ranging 0.716  ⩽  ρ  ⩽  1.000, p  ⩽  0.005) in 13 subjects receiving stimulation through neural implants in both the CNS and PNS. Furthermore, the new questionnaire captured more descriptors (M  =  2.65, SD  =  0.91) that would have been missed by being categorized as ‘other sensations’, using a previous questionnaire (M  =  1.40, SD  =  0.77, t(12)  =  -10.24, p  psychometric questionnaire will aid in establishing consistency and standardization of reporting in future studies of somatosensory neural prostheses.

  9. Risk factors affecting somatosensory function after sagittal split osteotomy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thygesen, Torben Henrik; Jensen, Allan Bardow; Helleberg, M


    Purpose The aim of this study was to evaluate potential individual and intraoperative risk factors associated with bilateral sagittal split osteotomy (BSSO) and to correlate the findings with postoperative changes in somatosensory function. Patients and Methods A total of 18 men and 29 women (mean...... and free dissection of the inferior alveolar nerve during BSSO increased self-reported changes in lower lip sensation and lower lip tactile threshold after BSSO (P discrimination (P

  10. Vibration and muscle contraction affect somatosensory evoked potentials


    Cohen, LG; Starr, A


    We recorded potentials evoked by specific somatosensory stimuli over peripheral nerve, spinal cord, and cerebral cortex. Vibration attenuated spinal and cerebral potentials evoked by mixed nerve and muscle spindle stimulation; in one subject that was tested, there was no effect on cutaneous input. Presynaptic inhibition of Ia input in the spinal cord and muscle spindle receptor occupancy are probably the responsible mechanisms. In contrast, muscle contraction attenuated cerebral potentials to...

  11. Four-dimensional maps of the human somatosensory system. (United States)

    Avanzini, Pietro; Abdollahi, Rouhollah O; Sartori, Ivana; Caruana, Fausto; Pelliccia, Veronica; Casaceli, Giuseppe; Mai, Roberto; Lo Russo, Giorgio; Rizzolatti, Giacomo; Orban, Guy A


    A fine-grained description of the spatiotemporal dynamics of human brain activity is a major goal of neuroscientific research. Limitations in spatial and temporal resolution of available noninvasive recording and imaging techniques have hindered so far the acquisition of precise, comprehensive four-dimensional maps of human neural activity. The present study combines anatomical and functional data from intracerebral recordings of nearly 100 patients, to generate highly resolved four-dimensional maps of human cortical processing of nonpainful somatosensory stimuli. These maps indicate that the human somatosensory system devoted to the hand encompasses a widespread network covering more than 10% of the cortical surface of both hemispheres. This network includes phasic components, centered on primary somatosensory cortex and neighboring motor, premotor, and inferior parietal regions, and tonic components, centered on opercular and insular areas, and involving human parietal rostroventral area and ventral medial-superior-temporal area. The technique described opens new avenues for investigating the neural basis of all levels of cortical processing in humans.

  12. Airway somatosensory deficits and dysphagia in Parkinson's disease. (United States)

    Hammer, Michael J; Murphy, Caitlin A; Abrams, Trisha M


    Individuals with Parkinson's disease (PD) often experience substantial impairment of swallow control, and are typically unaware of the presence or severity of their impairments suggesting that these individuals may also experience airway sensory deficits. However, the degree to which impaired swallow function in PD may relate to airway sensory deficits has yet to be formally tested. The purpose of this study was to examine whether airway sensory function is associated with swallow impairment in PD. Eighteen PD participants and 18 healthy controls participated in this study and underwent endoscopic assessment of airway somatosensory function, endoscopic assessment of swallow function, and clinical ratings of swallow and disease severity. PD participants exhibited abnormal airway somatosensory function and greater swallow impairment compared with healthy controls. Swallow and sensory deficits in PD were correlated with disease severity. Moreover, PD participants reported similar self-rated swallow function as healthy controls, and swallow deficits were correlated with sensory function suggesting an association between impaired sensory function and poor self-awareness of swallow deficits in PD. These results suggest that control of swallow is influenced by airway somatosensory function, that swallow-related deficits in PD are related to abnormal somatosensation, and that swallow and airway sensory function may degrade as a function of disease severity. Therefore, the basal ganglia and related neural networks may play an important role to integrate airway sensory input for swallow-related motor control. Furthermore, the airway deficits observed in PD suggest a disintegration of swallow-related sensory and motor control.

  13. Somatosensory mismatch response in young and elderly adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juho M. Strömmer


    Full Text Available Aging is associated with cognitive decline and alterations in early perceptual processes. Studies in the auditory and visual modalities have shown that the mismatch negativity (or the mismatch response, MMR, an event-related potential (ERP elicited by a deviant stimulus in a background of homogenous events, diminishes with aging and cognitive decline. However, the effects of aging on the somatosensory MMR are not known. In the current study, we recorded ERPs to electrical pulses to different fingers of the left hand in a passive oddball experiment in young (22–36 years and elderly (66–95 years adults engaged in a visual task. The MMR was found to deviants as compared to standards at two latency ranges: 180–220 ms and 250–290 ms post-stimulus onset. At 180–220 ms, within the young, the MMR was found at medial electrode sites, whereas aged did not show any amplitude difference between the stimulus types at the same latency range. At 250–290 ms, the MMR was evident with attenuated amplitude and narrowed scalp distribution among aged (Fz compared to young (fronto-centrally and lateral parietal sites. Hence, the results reveal that the somatosensory change detection mechanism is altered in aging. The somatosensory MMR can be used as a reliable measure of age-related changes in sensory-cognitive functions.

  14. Creatine pretreatment protects cortical axons from energy depletion in vitro (United States)

    Shen, Hua; Goldberg, Mark P.


    Creatine is a natural nitrogenous guanidino compound involved in bioenergy metabolism. Although creatine has been shown to protect neurons of the central nervous system (CNS) from experimental hypoxia/ischemia, it remains unclear if creatine may also protect CNS axons, and if the potential axonal protection depends on glial cells. To evaluate the direct impact of creatine on CNS axons, cortical axons were cultured in a separate compartment from their somas and proximal neurites using a modified two-compartment culture device. Axons in the axon compartment were subjected to acute energy depletion, an in vitro model of white matter ischemia, by exposure to 6 mM sodium azide for 30 min in the absence of glucose and pyruvate. Energy depletion reduced axonal ATP by 65%, depolarized axonal resting potential, and damaged 75% of axons. Application of creatine (10 mM) to both compartments of the culture at 24 h prior to energy depletion significantly reduced axonal damage by 50%. In line with the role of creatine in the bioenergy metabolism, this application also alleviated the axonal ATP loss and depolarization. Inhibition of axonal depolarization by blocking sodium influx with tetrodotoxin also effectively reduced the axonal damage caused by energy depletion. Further study revealed that the creatine effect was independent of glial cells, as axonal protection was sustained even when creatine was applied only to the axon compartment (free from somas and glial cells) for as little as 2 h. In contrast, application of creatine after energy depletion did not protect axons. The data provide the first evidence that creatine pretreatment may directly protect CNS axons from energy deficiency. PMID:22521466

  15. Cellular and Axonal Diversity in Molecular Layer Heterotopia of the Rat Cerebellar Vermis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah E. Van Dine


    Full Text Available Molecular layer heterotopia of the cerebellar primary fissure are a characteristic of many rat strains and are hypothesized to result from defect of granule cells exiting the external granule cell layer during cerebellar development. However, the cellular and axonal constituents of these malformations remain poorly understood. In the present report, we use histochemistry and immunocytochemistry to identify neuronal, glial, and axonal classes in molecular layer heterotopia. In particular, we identify parvalbumin-expressing molecular layer interneurons in heterotopia as well as three glial cell types including Bergmann glia, Olig2-expressing oligodendrocytes, and Iba1-expressing microglia. In addition, we document the presence of myelinated, serotonergic, catecholaminergic, and cholinergic axons in heterotopia indicating possible spinal and brainstem afferent projections to heterotopic cells. These findings are relevant toward understanding the mechanisms of normal and abnormal cerebellar development.

  16. D-[3H]aspartate retrograde labelling of callosal and association neurons of somatosensory areas I and II of cats

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Barbaresi, P.; Fabri, M.; Conti, F.; Manzoni, T.


    Experiments were carried out on cats to ascertain whether corticocortical neurons of somatosensory areas I (SI) and II (SII) could be labelled by retrograde axonal transport of D-[ 3 H]aspartate (D-[ 3 H]Asp). This tritiated enantiomer of the amino acid aspartate is (1) taken up selectively by axon terminals of neurons releasing aspartate and/or glutamate as excitatory neurotransmitter, (2) retrogradely transported and accumulated in perikarya, (3) not metabolized, and (4) visualized by autoradiography. A solution of D-[ 3 H]Asp was injected in eight cats in the trunk and forelimb zones of SI (two cats) or in the forelimb zone of SII (six cats). In order to compare the labelling patterns obtained with D-[ 3 H]Asp with those resulting after injection of a nonselective neuronal tracer, horseradish peroxidase (HRP) was delivered mixed with the radioactive tracer in seven of the eight cats. Furthermore, six additional animals received HRP injections in SI (three cats; trunk and forelimb zones) or SII (three cats; forelimb zone). D-[ 3 H]Asp retrograde labelling of perikarya was absent from the ipsilateral thalamus of all cats injected with the radioactive tracer but a dense terminal plexus of anterogradely labelled corticothalamic fibers from SI and SII was observed, overlapping the distribution area of thalamocortical neurons retrogradely labelled with HRP from the same areas. D-[ 3 H]Asp-labelled neurones were present in ipsilateral SII (SII-SI association neurones) in cats injected in SI. In these animals a bundle of radioactive fibres was observed in the rostral portion of the corpus callosum entering the contralateral hemisphere. There, neurones retrogradely labelled with silver grains were present in SI (SI-SI callosal neurons)

  17. [Severe, subacute axonal polyneuropathy due to hypophosphatemia].

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Eijk, J.J.J. van; Abdo, W.F.; Deurwaarder, E. den; Zwarts, M.J.; Warrenburg, B.P.C. van de


    A 46-year-old man receiving tube feeding because of anorexia and weight loss developed progressive neurological symptoms initially resembling Guillain-Barre syndrome. Eventually axonal neuropathy due to severe hypophosphatemia was diagnosed. Hypophosphatemia can be caused by the so-called refeeding

  18. Macrophages Promote Axon Regeneration with Concurrent Neurotoxicity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gensel, J.C.; Nakamura, S.; Guan, Z.; Rooijen, van N.; Ankeny, D.P.; Popovich, P.G.


    Activated macrophages can promote regeneration of CNS axons. However, macrophages also release factors that kill neurons. These opposing functions are likely induced simultaneously but are rarely considered together in the same experimental preparation. A goal of this study was to unequivocally

  19. Drug therapy for chronic idiopathic axonal polyneuropathy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Warendorf, Janna; Vrancken, Alexander F.J.E.; van Schaik, Ivo N.; Hughes, Richard A.C.; Notermans, Nicolette C.


    Background: Chronic idiopathic axonal polyneuropathy (CIAP) is an insidiously progressive sensory or sensorimotor polyneuropathy that affects elderly people. Although severe disability or handicap does not occur, CIAP reduces quality of life. CIAP is diagnosed in 10% to 25% of people referred for

  20. Drug therapy for chronic idiopathic axonal polyneuropathy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Warendorf, Janna; Vrancken, Alexander F. J. E.; van Schaik, Ivo N.; Hughes, Richard A. C.; Notermans, Nicolette C.


    Chronic idiopathic axonal polyneuropathy (CIAP) is an insidiously progressive sensory or sensorimotor polyneuropathy that affects elderly people. Although severe disability or handicap does not occur, CIAP reduces quality of life. CIAP is diagnosed in 10% to 25% of people referred for evaluation of

  1. Voxel-based lesion-symptom mapping of stroke lesions underlying somatosensory deficits. (United States)

    Meyer, Sarah; Kessner, Simon S; Cheng, Bastian; Bönstrup, Marlene; Schulz, Robert; Hummel, Friedhelm C; De Bruyn, Nele; Peeters, Andre; Van Pesch, Vincent; Duprez, Thierry; Sunaert, Stefan; Schrooten, Maarten; Feys, Hilde; Gerloff, Christian; Thomalla, Götz; Thijs, Vincent; Verheyden, Geert


    The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between stroke lesion location and the resulting somatosensory deficit. We studied exteroceptive and proprioceptive somatosensory symptoms and stroke lesions in 38 patients with first-ever acute stroke. The Erasmus modified Nottingham Sensory Assessment was used to clinically evaluate somatosensory functioning in the arm and hand within the first week after stroke onset. Additionally, more objective measures such as the perceptual threshold of touch and somatosensory evoked potentials were recorded. Non-parametric voxel-based lesion-symptom mapping was performed to investigate lesion contribution to different somatosensory deficits in the upper limb. Additionally, structural connectivity of brain areas that demonstrated the strongest association with somatosensory symptoms was determined, using probabilistic fiber tracking based on diffusion tensor imaging data from a healthy age-matched sample. Voxels with a significant association to somatosensory deficits were clustered in two core brain regions: the central parietal white matter, also referred to as the sensory component of the superior thalamic radiation, and the parietal operculum close to the insular cortex, representing the secondary somatosensory cortex. Our objective recordings confirmed findings from clinical assessments. Probabilistic tracking connected the first region to thalamus, internal capsule, brain stem, postcentral gyrus, cerebellum, and frontal pathways, while the second region demonstrated structural connections to thalamus, insular and primary somatosensory cortex. This study reveals that stroke lesions in the sensory fibers of the superior thalamocortical radiation and the parietal operculum are significantly associated with multiple exteroceptive and proprioceptive deficits in the arm and hand.

  2. Caenorhabditis elegans VEM-1, a novel membrane protein, regulates the guidance of ventral nerve cord-associated axons. (United States)

    Runko, Erik; Kaprielian, Zaven


    In the developing CNS, pathfinding growth cones use intermediate target- and pioneer axon-associated guidance cues to navigate along stereotypical trajectories. We previously showed that the novel membrane-associated protein Vema is localized to the floor plate and the optic chiasm, intermediate targets located at the ventral midline of the spinal cord and diencephalon in the developing rodent CNS, respectively. Here, we report that the Caenorhabditis elegans ortholog of vema, vem-1, is expressed by the AVG pioneer midline neuron and by several neurons that extend longitudinally projecting axons into the ventral nerve cord (VNC). In vem-1 mutants and vem-1 (RNAi) animals, a subset of posteriorly projecting interneuron axons either fail to extend ventrally to the VNC and, instead, assume aberrant lateral positions or are inappropriately located in the left tract of the VNC. In addition, ventral motor neuron axons exhibit pathfinding errors within the VNC and along the dorsoventral body axis. The conserved UNC-40/DCC and SAX-3-/Robo receptors mediate signaling events that regulate axon guidance in a wide variety of systems. Double-mutant analyses reveal that vem-1 genetically interacts with unc-40 and is likely to function in parallel with sax-3 to regulate the guidance of a subset of VNC-associated interneuron and motor neuron axons. Consistent with these genetic data, we also show that VEM-1 is capable of physically interacting with UNC-40 but not SAX-3.

  3. Disruption of visuospatial and somatosensory functional connectivity in anorexia nervosa. (United States)

    Favaro, Angela; Santonastaso, Paolo; Manara, Renzo; Bosello, Romina; Bommarito, Giulia; Tenconi, Elena; Di Salle, Francesco


    Although body image disturbance is considered one of the core characteristics of anorexia nervosa (AN), the exact nature of this complex feature is poorly understood. Task-related functional magnetic resonance imaging studies can only partially explore the multimodal complexity of body consciousness, which is a complex cognition underpinned by aspects of visual perception, proprioception, and touch. The aim of the present study was to explore the functional connectivity of networks involved in visuospatial and somatosensory processing in AN. Twenty-nine subjects with AN, 16 women who had recovered from it, and 26 healthy women underwent a resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging scan and neuropsychological assessment of their visuospatial abilities using the Rey-Osterrieth Complex Figure Test. Both AN groups showed areas of decreased connectivity in the ventral visual network, a network involved in the "what?" pathway of visual perception. Even more interestingly, the AN group, but not the recovered AN group, displayed increased coactivation in the left parietal cortex, encompassing the somatosensory cortex, in an area implicated in long-term multimodal spatial memory and representation, even in the absence of visual information. A neuropsychological assessment of visuospatial abilities revealed that aspects of detail processing and global integration (central coherence) showed correlations with connectivity of this brain area in the AN group. Our findings show that AN is associated with double disruption of brain connectivity, which shows a specific association with visuospatial difficulties and may explain the failure of the integration process between visual and somatosensory perceptual information that might sustain body image disturbance. Copyright © 2012 Society of Biological Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. An evaluation of the somatosensory profile of hemiparetic individuals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R.S. Mota


    Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to evaluate the somatosensory profile of 18 hemiparetic spastic victims of stroke with and without blocking vision. Maximal isometric contraction test was used for flexor and extensor muscles of the hip and knee, and flexor plantar muscles. The number of cycles per minute on stationary bike was also measured with eyes opened and closed. Significant differences were found suggesting the existence of miscommunication between sensory-motor neural mechanisms responsible for voluntary motor actions in these individuals.

  5. A Novel Growth-Promoting Pathway Formed by GDNF-Overexpressing Schwann Cells Promotes Propriospinal Axonal Regeneration, Synapse formation, and Partial Recovery of Function after Spinal Cord Injury (United States)

    Deng, Lingxiao; Deng, Ping; Ruan, Yiwen; Xu, Zao Cheng; Liu, Naikui; Wen, Xuejun; Smith, George M.; Xu, Xiao-Ming


    Descending propriospinal neurons (DPSN) are known to establish functional relays for supraspinal signals, and they display a greater growth response after injury than do the long projecting axons. However, their regenerative response is still deficient due to their failure to depart from growth supportive cellular transplants back into the host spinal cord, which contains numerous impediments to axon growth. Here we report the construction of a continuous growth-promoting pathway in adult rats, formed by grafted Schwann cells (SCs) overexpressing glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF). We demonstrate that such a growth-promoting pathway, extending from the axonal cut ends to the site of innervation in the distal spinal cord, promoted regeneration of DPSN axons through and beyond the lesion gap of a spinal cord hemisection. Within the distal host spinal cord, regenerated DPSN axons formed synapses with host neurons leading to the restoration of action potentials and partial recovery of function. PMID:23536080

  6. Two Modes of the Axonal Interferon Response Limit Alphaherpesvirus Neuroinvasion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ren Song


    Full Text Available Infection by alphaherpesviruses, including herpes simplex virus (HSV and pseudorabies virus (PRV, typically begins at epithelial surfaces and continues into the peripheral nervous system (PNS. Inflammatory responses are induced at the infected peripheral site prior to invasion of the PNS. When the peripheral tissue is first infected, only the innervating axons are exposed to this inflammatory milieu, which includes the interferons (IFNs. The fundamental question is how do PNS cell bodies respond to these distant, potentially damaging events experienced by axons. Using compartmented cultures that physically separate neuron axons from cell bodies, we found that pretreating isolated axons with beta interferon (IFN-β or gamma interferon (IFN-γ significantly diminished the number of herpes simplex virus 1 (HSV-1 and PRV particles moving in axons toward the cell bodies in a receptor-dependent manner. Exposing axons to IFN-β induced STAT1 phosphorylation (p-STAT1 only in axons, while exposure of axons to IFN-γ induced p-STAT1 accumulation in distant cell body nuclei. Blocking transcription in cell bodies eliminated antiviral effects induced by IFN-γ, but not those induced by IFN-β. Proteomic analysis of IFN-β- or IFN-γ-treated axons identified several differentially regulated proteins. Therefore, unlike treatment with IFN-γ, IFN-β induces a noncanonical, local antiviral response in axons. The activation of a local IFN response in axons represents a new paradigm for cytokine control of neuroinvasion.

  7. Effects of p-xylene inhalation on axonal transport in the rat retinal ganglion cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Padilla, S.S.; Lyerly, D.P. (Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, NC (USA))


    Although the solvent xylene is suspected of producing nervous system dysfunction in animals and humans, little is known regarding the neurochemical consequences of xylene inhalation. The intent of this study was to determine the effect of intermittent, acute, and subchronic p-xylene exposure on the axonal transport of proteins and glycoproteins within the rat retinofugal tract. A number of different exposure regimens were tested ranging from 50 ppm for a single 6-hr exposure to 1600 ppm 6 hr/day, 5 days/week, for a total of 8 exposure days. Immediately following removal from the inhalation chambers rats were injected intraocularly with (35S)methionine and (3H)fucose (to label retinal proteins and glycoproteins, respectively) and the axonal transport of labeled macromolecules to axons (optic nerve and optic tract) and nerve endings (lateral geniculate body and superior colliculus) was examined 20 hr after precursor injection. Only relatively severe exposure regimens (i.e., 800 or 1600 ppm 6 hr/day, 5 days/week, for 1.5 weeks) produced significant reductions in axonal transport; there was a moderate reduction in the axonal transport of 35S-labeled proteins in the 800-ppm-treated group which was more widespread in the 1600 ppm-treated group. Transport of 3H-labeled glycoproteins was less affected. Assessment of retinal metabolism immediately after isotope injection indicated that the rate of precursor uptake was not reduced in either treatment group. Furthermore, rapid transport was still substantially reduced in animals exposed to 1600 ppm p-xylene and allowed a 13-day withdrawal period. These data indicate that p-xylene inhalation decreases rapid axonal transport supplied to the projections of the rat retinal ganglion cells immediately after cessation of inhalation exposure and that this decreased transport is still apparent 13 days after the last exposure.

  8. Effects of p-xylene inhalation on axonal transport in the rat retinal ganglion cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Padilla, S.S.; Lyerly, D.P.


    Although the solvent xylene is suspected of producing nervous system dysfunction in animals and humans, little is known regarding the neurochemical consequences of xylene inhalation. The intent of this study was to determine the effect of intermittent, acute, and subchronic p-xylene exposure on the axonal transport of proteins and glycoproteins within the rat retinofugal tract. A number of different exposure regimens were tested ranging from 50 ppm for a single 6-hr exposure to 1600 ppm 6 hr/day, 5 days/week, for a total of 8 exposure days. Immediately following removal from the inhalation chambers rats were injected intraocularly with [35S]methionine and [3H]fucose (to label retinal proteins and glycoproteins, respectively) and the axonal transport of labeled macromolecules to axons (optic nerve and optic tract) and nerve endings (lateral geniculate body and superior colliculus) was examined 20 hr after precursor injection. Only relatively severe exposure regimens (i.e., 800 or 1600 ppm 6 hr/day, 5 days/week, for 1.5 weeks) produced significant reductions in axonal transport; there was a moderate reduction in the axonal transport of 35S-labeled proteins in the 800-ppm-treated group which was more widespread in the 1600 ppm-treated group. Transport of 3H-labeled glycoproteins was less affected. Assessment of retinal metabolism immediately after isotope injection indicated that the rate of precursor uptake was not reduced in either treatment group. Furthermore, rapid transport was still substantially reduced in animals exposed to 1600 ppm p-xylene and allowed a 13-day withdrawal period. These data indicate that p-xylene inhalation decreases rapid axonal transport supplied to the projections of the rat retinal ganglion cells immediately after cessation of inhalation exposure and that this decreased transport is still apparent 13 days after the last exposure

  9. Theta-burst stimulation-induced plasticity over primary somatosensory cortex changes somatosensory temporal discrimination in healthy humans.

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    Antonella Conte

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold (STDT measures the ability to perceive two stimuli as being sequential. Precisely how the single cerebral structures contribute in controlling the STDT is partially known and no information is available about whether STDT can be modulated by plasticity-inducing protocols. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: To investigate how the cortical and cerebellar areas contribute to the STDT we used transcranial magnetic stimulation and a neuronavigation system. We enrolled 18 healthy volunteers and 10 of these completed all the experimental sessions, including the control experiments. STDT was measured on the left hand before and after applying continuous theta-burst stimulation (cTBS on the right primary somatosensory area (S1, pre-supplementary motor area (pre-SMA, right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC and left cerebellar hemisphere. We then investigated whether intermittent theta-burst stimulation (iTBS on the right S1 improved the STDT. After right S1 cTBS, STDT values increased whereas after iTBS to the same cortical site they decreased. cTBS over the DLPFC and left lateral cerebellum left the STDT statistically unchanged. cTBS over the pre-SMA also left the STDT statistically unchanged, but it increased the number of errors subjects made in distinguishing trials testing a single stimulus and those testing paired stimuli. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our findings obtained by applying TBS to the cortical areas involved in processing sensory discrimination show that the STDT is encoded in S1, possibly depends on intrinsic S1 neural circuit properties, and can be modulated by plasticity-inducing TBS protocols delivered over S1. Our findings, giving further insight into mechanisms involved in somatosensory temporal discrimination, help interpret STDT abnormalities in movement disorders including dystonia and Parkinson's disease.

  10. Theta-Burst Stimulation-Induced Plasticity over Primary Somatosensory Cortex Changes Somatosensory Temporal Discrimination in Healthy Humans (United States)

    Conte, Antonella; Rocchi, Lorenzo; Nardella, Andrea; Dispenza, Sabrina; Scontrini, Alessandra; Khan, Nashaba; Berardelli, Alfredo


    Background The somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold (STDT) measures the ability to perceive two stimuli as being sequential. Precisely how the single cerebral structures contribute in controlling the STDT is partially known and no information is available about whether STDT can be modulated by plasticity-inducing protocols. Methodology/Principal Findings To investigate how the cortical and cerebellar areas contribute to the STDT we used transcranial magnetic stimulation and a neuronavigation system. We enrolled 18 healthy volunteers and 10 of these completed all the experimental sessions, including the control experiments. STDT was measured on the left hand before and after applying continuous theta-burst stimulation (cTBS) on the right primary somatosensory area (S1), pre-supplementary motor area (pre-SMA), right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and left cerebellar hemisphere. We then investigated whether intermittent theta-burst stimulation (iTBS) on the right S1 improved the STDT. After right S1 cTBS, STDT values increased whereas after iTBS to the same cortical site they decreased. cTBS over the DLPFC and left lateral cerebellum left the STDT statistically unchanged. cTBS over the pre-SMA also left the STDT statistically unchanged, but it increased the number of errors subjects made in distinguishing trials testing a single stimulus and those testing paired stimuli. Conclusions/Significance Our findings obtained by applying TBS to the cortical areas involved in processing sensory discrimination show that the STDT is encoded in S1, possibly depends on intrinsic S1 neural circuit properties, and can be modulated by plasticity-inducing TBS protocols delivered over S1. Our findings, giving further insight into mechanisms involved in somatosensory temporal discrimination, help interpret STDT abnormalities in movement disorders including dystonia and Parkinson's disease. PMID:22412964

  11. Axon degeneration: make the Schwann cell great again

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Keit Men Wong


    Full Text Available Axonal degeneration is a pivotal feature of many neurodegenerative conditions and substantially accounts for neurological morbidity. A widely used experimental model to study the mechanisms of axonal degeneration is Wallerian degeneration (WD, which occurs after acute axonal injury. In the peripheral nervous system (PNS, WD is characterized by swift dismantling and clearance of injured axons with their myelin sheaths. This is a prerequisite for successful axonal regeneration. In the central nervous system (CNS, WD is much slower, which significantly contributes to failed axonal regeneration. Although it is well-documented that Schwann cells (SCs have a critical role in the regenerative potential of the PNS, to date we have only scarce knowledge as to how SCs 'sense' axonal injury and immediately respond to it. In this regard, it remains unknown as to whether SCs play the role of a passive bystander or an active director during the execution of the highly orchestrated disintegration program of axons. Older reports, together with more recent studies, suggest that SCs mount dynamic injury responses minutes after axonal injury, long before axonal breakdown occurs. The swift SC response to axonal injury could play either a pro-degenerative role, or alternatively a supportive role, to the integrity of distressed axons that have not yet committed to degenerate. Indeed, supporting the latter concept, recent findings in a chronic PNS neurodegeneration model indicate that deactivation of a key molecule promoting SC injury responses exacerbates axonal loss. If this holds true in a broader spectrum of conditions, it may provide the grounds for the development of new glia-centric therapeutic approaches to counteract axonal loss.

  12. Structural and functional changes in the somatosensory cortex in euthymic females with bipolar disorder. (United States)

    Minuzzi, Luciano; Syan, Sabrina K; Smith, Mara; Hall, Alexander; Hall, Geoffrey Bc; Frey, Benicio N


    Current evidence from neuroimaging data suggests possible dysfunction of the fronto-striatal-limbic circuits in individuals with bipolar disorder. Somatosensory cortical function has been implicated in emotional recognition, risk-taking and affective responses through sensory modalities. This study investigates anatomy and function of the somatosensory cortex in euthymic bipolar women. In total, 68 right-handed euthymic women (bipolar disorder = 32 and healthy controls = 36) between 16 and 45 years of age underwent high-resolution anatomical and functional magnetic resonance imaging during the mid-follicular menstrual phase. The somatosensory cortex was used as a seed region for resting-state functional connectivity analysis. Voxel-based morphometry was used to evaluate somatosensory cortical gray matter volume between groups. We found increased resting-state functional connectivity between the somatosensory cortex and insular cortex, inferior prefrontal gyrus and frontal orbital cortex in euthymic bipolar disorder subjects compared to healthy controls. Voxel-based morphometry analysis showed decreased gray matter in the left somatosensory cortex in the bipolar disorder group. Whole-brain voxel-based morphometry analysis controlled by age did not reveal any additional significant difference between groups. This study is the first to date to evaluate anatomy and function of the somatosensory cortex in a well-characterized sample of euthymic bipolar disorder females. Anatomical and functional changes in the somatosensory cortex in this population might contribute to the pathophysiology of bipolar disorder.

  13. Somatosensory evoked potentials and dynamic postural assessment in adolescent idiopathic scoliosis

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    Dalia Mohamed Ezz El Mikkawy


    Conclusion The study demonstrates abnormal somatosensory and postural function in patients with AIS, and a significant inter-relationship between the scoliotic angle, the somatosensory system, and posture. Thus, optimum assessment and treatment of neurological pathway and balance are important in these patients.

  14. A cognitive neuroprosthetic that uses cortical stimulation for somatosensory feedback (United States)

    Klaes, Christian; Shi, Ying; Kellis, Spencer; Minxha, Juri; Revechkis, Boris; Andersen, Richard A.


    Objective. Present day cortical brain-machine interfaces (BMIs) have made impressive advances using decoded brain signals to control extracorporeal devices. Although BMIs are used in a closed-loop fashion, sensory feedback typically is visual only. However medical case studies have shown that the loss of somesthesis in a limb greatly reduces the agility of the limb even when visual feedback is available. Approach. To overcome this limitation, this study tested a closed-loop BMI that utilizes intracortical microstimulation to provide ‘tactile’ sensation to a non-human primate. Main result. Using stimulation electrodes in Brodmann area 1 of somatosensory cortex (BA1) and recording electrodes in the anterior intraparietal area, the parietal reach region and dorsal area 5 (area 5d), it was found that this form of feedback can be used in BMI tasks. Significance. Providing somatosensory feedback has the poyential to greatly improve the performance of cognitive neuroprostheses especially for fine control and object manipulation. Adding stimulation to a BMI system could therefore improve the quality of life for severely paralyzed patients.

  15. Evaluation of various somatosensory stimulations for functional MRI

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hara, Kazushi; Nakasato, Nobukazu; Mizoi, Kazuo; Yoshimoto, Takashi; Shimizu, Hiroaki.


    The aim of this functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study was to test detectability of activated area using various somatosensory stimulations. The following stimulations were performed in normal volunteers: regular or irregular electrical median nerve stimulation (n=5, each), tactile stimulation to the palm and fingers (n=8), pain stimulation to the index finger (n=5) or to the palm and fingers (n=5). fMRI was acquired with a spoiled gradient echo sequence at 1.5 T. Detectability of activated area was the highest when the pain stimulation was applied to the palm and fingers (80%). A successful rate for the tactile stimulation was 25%, and the other stimulations failed to demonstrate any activation. When successful, the highest signal activation on fMRI was seen on a sulcus, which presumably arose from a vein. The sulcus was defined as the central sulcus by somatosensory evoked field using a median nerve stimulation. Our study indicates that the pain stimulation to the palm and fingers may be a choice for the sensory fMRI. (author)

  16. Constitutively expressed Protocadherin-α regulates the coalescence and elimination of homotypic olfactory axons through its cytoplasmic region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sonoko eHasegawa


    Full Text Available Olfactory sensory neuron (OSN axons coalesce into specific glomeruli in the olfactory bulb (OB according to their odorant receptor (OR expression. Several guidance molecules enhance the coalescence of homotypic OSN projections, in an OR-specific- and neural-activity-dependent manner. However, the mechanism by which homotypic OSN axons are organized into glomeruli is unsolved. We previously reported that the clustered protocadherin-α (Pcdh-α family of diverse cadherin-related molecules plays roles in the coalescence and elimination of homotypic OSN axons throughout development. Here we showed that the elimination of small ectopic homotypic glomeruli required the constitutive expression of a Pcdh-α isoform and Pcdh-α’s cytoplasmic region, but not OR specificity or neural activity. These results suggest that Pcdh-α proteins provide a cytoplasmic signal to regulate repulsive activity for homotypic OSN axons independently of OR expression and neural activity. The counterbalancing effect of Pcdh-α proteins for the axonal coalescence mechanisms mediated by other olfactory guidance molecules indicate a possible mechanism for the organization of homotypic OSN axons into glomeruli during development.

  17. Axonal excitability properties in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. (United States)

    Vucic, Steve; Kiernan, Matthew C


    To investigate axolemmal ion channel function in patients diagnosed with sporadic amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). A recently described threshold tracking protocol was implemented to measure multiple indices of axonal excitability in 26 ALS patients by stimulating the median motor nerve at the wrist. The excitability indices studied included: stimulus-response curve (SR); strength-duration time constant (tauSD); current/threshold relationship; threshold electrotonus to a 100 ms polarizing current; and recovery curves to a supramaximal stimulus. Compound muscle action potential (CMAP) amplitudes were significantly reduced in ALS patients (ALS, 2.84+/-1.17 mV; controls, 8.27+/-1.09 mV, P<0.0005) and the SR curves for both 0.2 and 1 ms pulse widths were shifted in a hyperpolarized direction. Threshold electrotonus revealed a greater threshold change to both depolarizing and hyperpolarizing conditioning stimuli, similar to the 'fanned out' appearance that occurs with membrane hyperpolarization. The tauSD was significantly increased in ALS patients (ALS, 0.50+/-0.03 ms; controls, 0.42+/-0.02 ms, P<0.05). The recovery cycle of excitability following a conditioning supramaximal stimulus revealed increased superexcitability in ALS patients (ALS, 29.63+/-1.25%; controls, 25.11+/-1.01%, P<0.01). Threshold tracking studies revealed changes indicative of widespread dysfunction in axonal ion channel conduction, including increased persistent Na+ channel conduction, and abnormalities of fast paranodal K+ and internodal slow K+ channel function, in ALS patients. An increase in persistent Na+ conductances coupled with reduction in K+ currents would predispose axons of ALS patients to generation of fasciculations and cramps. Axonal excitability studies may provide insight into mechanisms responsible for motor neuron loss in ALS.

  18. Slit and Netrin-1 guide cranial motor axon pathfinding via Rho-kinase, myosin light chain kinase and myosin II

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    Drescher Uwe


    Full Text Available Abstract Background In the developing hindbrain, cranial motor axon guidance depends on diffusible repellent factors produced by the floor plate. Our previous studies have suggested that candidate molecules for mediating this effect are Slits, Netrin-1 and Semaphorin3A (Sema3A. It is unknown to what extent these factors contribute to floor plate-derived chemorepulsion of motor axons, and the downstream signalling pathways are largely unclear. Results In this study, we have used a combination of in vitro and in vivo approaches to identify the components of floor plate chemorepulsion and their downstream signalling pathways. Using in vitro motor axon deflection assays, we demonstrate that Slits and Netrin-1, but not Sema3A, contribute to floor plate repulsion. We also find that the axon pathways of dorsally projecting branchiomotor neurons are disrupted in Netrin-1 mutant mice and in chick embryos expressing dominant-negative Unc5a receptors, indicating an in vivo role for Netrin-1. We further demonstrate that Slit and Netrin-1 signalling are mediated by Rho-kinase (ROCK and myosin light chain kinase (MLCK, which regulate myosin II activity, controlling actin retrograde flow in the growth cone. We show that MLCK, ROCK and myosin II are required for Slit and Netrin-1-mediated growth cone collapse of cranial motor axons. Inhibition of these molecules in explant cultures, or genetic manipulation of RhoA or myosin II function in vivo causes characteristic cranial motor axon pathfinding errors, including the inability to exit the midline, and loss of turning towards exit points. Conclusions Our findings suggest that both Slits and Netrin-1 contribute to floor plate-derived chemorepulsion of cranial motor axons. They further indicate that RhoA/ROCK, MLCK and myosin II are components of Slit and Netrin-1 signalling pathways, and suggest that these pathways are of key importance in cranial motor axon navigation.

  19. Synaptic Democracy and Vesicular Transport in Axons (United States)

    Bressloff, Paul C.; Levien, Ethan


    Synaptic democracy concerns the general problem of how regions of an axon or dendrite far from the cell body (soma) of a neuron can play an effective role in neuronal function. For example, stimulated synapses far from the soma are unlikely to influence the firing of a neuron unless some sort of active dendritic processing occurs. Analogously, the motor-driven transport of newly synthesized proteins from the soma to presynaptic targets along the axon tends to favor the delivery of resources to proximal synapses. Both of these phenomena reflect fundamental limitations of transport processes based on a localized source. In this Letter, we show that a more democratic distribution of proteins along an axon can be achieved by making the transport process less efficient. This involves two components: bidirectional or "stop-and-go" motor transport (which can be modeled in terms of advection-diffusion), and reversible interactions between motor-cargo complexes and synaptic targets. Both of these features have recently been observed experimentally. Our model suggests that, just as in human societies, there needs to be a balance between "efficiency" and "equality".

  20. Retinoic acid signaling in axonal regeneration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Radhika ePuttagunta


    Full Text Available Following an acute central nervous system injury, axonal regeneration and functional recovery are extremely limited. This is due to an extrinsic inhibitory growth environment and the lack of intrinsic growth competence. Retinoic acid (RA signaling, essential in developmental dorsoventral patterning and specification of spinal motor neurons, has been shown through its receptor, the transcription factor RA receptor β2 (RARß2, to induce axonal regeneration following spinal cord injury (SCI. Recently, it has been shown that in dorsal root ganglia neurons, cAMP levels were greatly increased by lentiviral RARβ2 expression and contributed to neurite outgrowth. Moreover, RARβ agonists, in cerebellar granule neurons and in the brain in vivo, induced phosphoinositide 3-kinase dependent phosphorylation of AKT that was involved in RARβ-dependent neurite outgrowth. More recently, RA-RARß pathways were shown to directly transcriptionally repress a member of the inhibitory Nogo receptor complex, Lingo-1, under an axonal growth inhibitory environment in vitro as well as following spinal injury in vivo. This perspective focuses on these newly discovered molecular mechanisms and future directions in the field.

  1. Origin, course, and laterality of spinocerebellar axons in the North American opossum, Didelphis virginiana. (United States)

    Terman, J R; Wang, X M; Martin, G F


    Spinocerebellar axons have been studied extensively in placental mammals, but there have been no full reports on their origin, laterality, or spinal course in any marsupial. We have used the North American opossum (Didelphis virginiana) to obtain such information and to ask whether any spinocerebellar neurons innervate both the anterior and posterior lobes of the cerebellum through axonal collaterals. To identify spinal neurons that project to the cerebellum, we employed the retrograde transport of Fluoro-Gold (FG) from the anterior lobe, the main target of spinocerebellar axons. In some cases, cerebellar injections of FG were combined with hemisections of the rostral cervical or midthoracic spinal cord, so that laterality of spinocerebellar connections could be established. To determine whether single neurons project to both the anterior lobe and the posterior lobe, injections of Fast Blue (FB) into the anterior lobe were combined with injections of Diamidino yellow (DY) or rhodamine B dextran (RBD) into the posterior lobe, or vice versa. Following injections of FG into the anterior lobe, neurons were labeled throughout the length of the spinal cord, which differed in laminar distribution and laterality of their projections. Among other areas, neurons were labeled in the central cervical nucleus, the nucleus centrobasalis, Clarke's nucleus, the dorsal horn dorsal spinocerebellar tract area, the spinal border region, and Stilling's nucleus. When anterior lobe injections of FB were combined with injections of RBD or DY into the posterior lobe, or vice versa, some double-labeled neurons were present in all major spinocerebellar groups. Cerebellar injections of FG also retrogradely labeled spinocerebellar axons, allowing us to document their locations in the gray matter as well as within the periphery of the lateral and ventral funiculi at all spinal levels. A few spinocerebellar axons also were found in the dorsal funiculus (a dorsal column-spinocerebellar tract

  2. Dependence of regenerated sensory axons on continuous neurotrophin-3 delivery. (United States)

    Hou, Shaoping; Nicholson, LaShae; van Niekerk, Erna; Motsch, Melanie; Blesch, Armin


    Previous studies have shown that injured dorsal column sensory axons extend across a spinal cord lesion site if axons are guided by a gradient of neurotrophin-3 (NT-3) rostral to the lesion. Here we examined whether continuous NT-3 delivery is necessary to sustain regenerated axons in the injured spinal cord. Using tetracycline-regulated (tet-off) lentiviral gene delivery, NT-3 expression was tightly controlled by doxycycline administration. To examine axon growth responses to regulated NT-3 expression, adult rats underwent a C3 dorsal funiculus lesion. The lesion site was filled with bone marrow stromal cells, tet-off-NT-3 virus was injected rostral to the lesion site, and the intrinsic growth capacity of sensory neurons was activated by a conditioning lesion. When NT-3 gene expression was turned on, cholera toxin β-subunit-labeled sensory axons regenerated into and beyond the lesion/graft site. Surprisingly, the number of regenerated axons significantly declined when NT-3 expression was turned off, whereas continued NT-3 expression sustained regenerated axons. Quantification of axon numbers beyond the lesion demonstrated a significant decline of axon growth in animals with transient NT-3 expression, only some axons that had regenerated over longer distance were sustained. Regenerated axons were located in white matter and did not form axodendritic synapses but expressed presynaptic markers when closely associated with NG2-labeled cells. A decline in axon density was also observed within cellular grafts after NT-3 expression was turned off possibly via reduction in L1 and laminin expression in Schwann cells. Thus, multiple mechanisms underlie the inability of transient NT-3 expression to fully sustain regenerated sensory axons.

  3. Formation of longitudinal axon pathways in Caenorhabditis elegans. (United States)

    Hutter, Harald


    The small number of neurons and the simple architecture of the Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) nervous system enables researchers to study axonal pathfinding at the level of individually identified axons. Axons in C. elegans extend predominantly along one of the two major body axes, the anterior-posterior axis and the dorso-ventral axis. This review will focus on axon navigation along the anterior-posterior axis, leading to the establishment of the longitudinal axon tracts, with a focus on the largest longitudinal axon tract, the ventral nerve cord (VNC). In the VNC, axons grow out in a stereotypic order, with early outgrowing axons (pioneers) playing an important role in guiding later outgrowing (follower) axons. Genetic screens have identified a number of genes specifically affecting the formation of longitudinal axon tracts. These genes include secreted proteins, putative receptors and adhesion molecules, as well as intracellular proteins regulating the cell's response to guidance cues. In contrast to dorso-ventral navigation, no major general guidance cues required for the establishment of longitudinal pathways have been identified so far. The limited penetrance of defects found in many mutants affecting longitudinal navigation suggests that guidance cues act redundantly in this process. The majority of the axon guidance genes identified in C. elegans are evolutionary conserved, i.e. have homologs in other animals, including vertebrates. For a number of these genes, a role in axon guidance has not been described outside C. elegans. Taken together, studies in C. elegans contribute to a fundamental understanding of the molecular basis of axonal navigation that can be extended to other animals, including vertebrates and probably humans as well. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  4. Ephrin-B3 is the midline barrier that prevents corticospinal tract axons from recrossing, allowing for unilateral motor control. (United States)

    Kullander, K; Croll, S D; Zimmer, M; Pan, L; McClain, J; Hughes, V; Zabski, S; DeChiara, T M; Klein, R; Yancopoulos, G D; Gale, N W


    Growing axons follow highly stereotypical pathways, guided by a variety of attractive and repulsive cues, before establishing specific connections with distant targets. A particularly well-known example that illustrates the complexity of axonal migration pathways involves the axonal projections of motor neurons located in the motor cortex. These projections take a complex route during which they first cross the midline, then form the corticospinal tract, and ultimately connect with motor neurons in the contralateral side of the spinal cord. These obligatory contralateral connections account for why one side of the brain controls movement on the opposing side of the body. The netrins and slits provide well-known midline signals that regulate axonal crossings at the midline. Herein we report that a member of the ephrin family, ephrin-B3, also plays a key role at the midline to regulate axonal crossing. In particular, we show that ephrin-B3 acts as the midline barrier that prevents corticospinal tract projections from recrossing when they enter the spinal gray matter. We report that in ephrin-B3(-/-) mice, corticospinal tract projections freely recross in the spinal gray matter, such that the motor cortex on one side of the brain now provides bilateral input to the spinal cord. This neuroanatomical abnormality in ephrin-B3(-/-) mice correlates with loss of unilateral motor control, yielding mice that simultaneously move their right and left limbs and thus have a peculiar hopping gait quite unlike the alternate step gait displayed by normal mice. The corticospinal and walking defects in ephrin-B3(-/-) mice resemble those recently reported for mice lacking the EphA4 receptor, which binds ephrin-B3 as well as other ephrins, suggesting that the binding of EphA4-bearing axonal processes to ephrin-B3 at the midline provides the repulsive signal that prevents corticospinal tract projections from recrossing the midline in the developing spinal cord.

  5. Loss of Axon Bifurcation in Mesencephalic Trigeminal Neurons Impairs the Maximal Biting Force in Npr2-Deficient Mice

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    Gohar Ter-Avetisyan


    Full Text Available Bifurcation of axons from dorsal root ganglion (DRG and cranial sensory ganglion (CSG neurons is mediated by a cGMP-dependent signaling pathway composed of the ligand C-type natriuretic peptide (CNP, the receptor guanylyl cyclase Npr2 and the cGMP-dependent protein kinase I (cGKI. Here, we demonstrate that mesencephalic trigeminal neurons (MTN which are the only somatosensory neurons whose cell bodies are located within the CNS co-express Npr2 and cGKI. Afferents of MTNs form Y-shaped branches in rhombomere 2 where the ligand CNP is expressed. Analyzing mouse mutants deficient for CNP or Npr2 we found that in the absence of CNP-induced cGMP signaling MTN afferents no longer bifurcate and instead extend either into the trigeminal root or caudally in the hindbrain. Since MTNs provide sensory information from jaw closing muscles and periodontal ligaments we measured the bite force of conditional mouse mutants of Npr2 (Npr2flox/flox;Engr1Cre that lack bifurcation of MTN whereas the bifurcation of trigeminal afferents is normal. Our study revealed that the maximal biting force of both sexes is reduced in Npr2flox/flox;Engr1Cre mice as compared to their Npr2flox/flox littermate controls. In conclusion sensory feedback mechanisms from jaw closing muscles or periodontal ligaments might be impaired in the absence of MTN axon bifurcation.

  6. Can injured adult CNS axons regenerate by recapitulating development? (United States)

    Hilton, Brett J; Bradke, Frank


    In the adult mammalian central nervous system (CNS), neurons typically fail to regenerate their axons after injury. During development, by contrast, neurons extend axons effectively. A variety of intracellular mechanisms mediate this difference, including changes in gene expression, the ability to form a growth cone, differences in mitochondrial function/axonal transport and the efficacy of synaptic transmission. In turn, these intracellular processes are linked to extracellular differences between the developing and adult CNS. During development, the extracellular environment directs axon growth and circuit formation. In adulthood, by contrast, extracellular factors, such as myelin and the extracellular matrix, restrict axon growth. Here, we discuss whether the reactivation of developmental processes can elicit axon regeneration in the injured CNS. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  7. Listening to another sense: somatosensory integration in the auditory system. (United States)

    Wu, Calvin; Stefanescu, Roxana A; Martel, David T; Shore, Susan E


    Conventionally, sensory systems are viewed as separate entities, each with its own physiological process serving a different purpose. However, many functions require integrative inputs from multiple sensory systems and sensory intersection and convergence occur throughout the central nervous system. The neural processes for hearing perception undergo significant modulation by the two other major sensory systems, vision and somatosensation. This synthesis occurs at every level of the ascending auditory pathway: the cochlear nucleus, inferior colliculus, medial geniculate body and the auditory cortex. In this review, we explore the process of multisensory integration from (1) anatomical (inputs and connections), (2) physiological (cellular responses), (3) functional and (4) pathological aspects. We focus on the convergence between auditory and somatosensory inputs in each ascending auditory station. This review highlights the intricacy of sensory processing and offers a multisensory perspective regarding the understanding of sensory disorders.

  8. Decoding stimulus features in primate somatosensory cortex during perceptual categorization (United States)

    Alvarez, Manuel; Zainos, Antonio; Romo, Ranulfo


    Neurons of the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) respond as functions of frequency or amplitude of a vibrotactile stimulus. However, whether S1 neurons encode both frequency and amplitude of the vibrotactile stimulus or whether each sensory feature is encoded by separate populations of S1 neurons is not known, To further address these questions, we recorded S1 neurons while trained monkeys categorized only one sensory feature of the vibrotactile stimulus: frequency, amplitude, or duration. The results suggest a hierarchical encoding scheme in S1: from neurons that encode all sensory features of the vibrotactile stimulus to neurons that encode only one sensory feature. We hypothesize that the dynamic representation of each sensory feature in S1 might serve for further downstream processing that leads to the monkey’s psychophysical behavior observed in these tasks. PMID:25825711

  9. Motor and somatosensory conversion disorder: a functional unawareness syndrome? (United States)

    Perez, David L; Barsky, Arthur J; Daffner, Kirk; Silbersweig, David A


    Although conversion disorder is closely connected to the origins of neurology and psychiatry, it remains poorly understood. In this article, the authors discuss neural and clinical parallels between lesional unawareness disorders and unilateral motor and somatosensory conversion disorder, emphasizing functional neuroimaging/disease correlates. Authors suggest that a functional-unawareness neurobiological framework, mediated by right hemisphere-lateralized, large-scale brain network dysfunction, may play a significant role in the neurobiology of conversion disorder. The perigenual anterior cingulate and the posterior parietal cortices are detailed as important in disease pathophysiology. Further investigations will refine the functional-unawareness concept, clarify the role of affective circuits, and delineate the process through which functional neurologic symptoms emerge.

  10. Atypical visual and somatosensory adaptation in schizophrenia-spectrum disorders (United States)

    Andrade, G N; Butler, J S; Peters, G A; Molholm, S; Foxe, J J


    Neurophysiological investigations in patients with schizophrenia consistently show early sensory processing deficits in the visual system. Importantly, comparable sensory deficits have also been established in healthy first-degree biological relatives of patients with schizophrenia and in first-episode drug-naive patients. The clear implication is that these measures are endophenotypic, related to the underlying genetic liability for schizophrenia. However, there is significant overlap between patient response distributions and those of healthy individuals without affected first-degree relatives. Here we sought to develop more sensitive measures of sensory dysfunction in this population, with an eye to establishing endophenotypic markers with better predictive capabilities. We used a sensory adaptation paradigm in which electrophysiological responses to basic visual and somatosensory stimuli presented at different rates (ranging from 250 to 2550 ms interstimulus intervals, in blocked presentations) were compared. Our main hypothesis was that adaptation would be substantially diminished in schizophrenia, and that this would be especially prevalent in the visual system. High-density event-related potential recordings showed amplitude reductions in sensory adaptation in patients with schizophrenia (N=15 Experiment 1, N=12 Experiment 2) compared with age-matched healthy controls (N=15 Experiment 1, N=12 Experiment 2), and this was seen for both sensory modalities. At the individual participant level, reduced adaptation was more robust for visual compared with somatosensory stimulation. These results point to significant impairments in short-term sensory plasticity across sensory modalities in schizophrenia. These simple-to-execute measures may prove valuable as candidate endophenotypes and will bear follow-up in future work. PMID:27163205

  11. Schwann Cell Glycogen Selectively Supports Myelinated Axon Function (United States)

    Brown, Angus M; Evans, Richard D; Black, Joel; Ransom, Bruce R


    Objectives Interruption of energy supply to peripheral axons is a cause of axon loss. We determined if glycogen was present in mammalian peripheral nerve, and if it supported axon conduction during aglycemia. Methods We used biochemical assay and electron microscopy to determine the presence of glycogen, and electrophysiology to monitor axon function. Results Glycogen was present in sciatic nerve, its concentration varying directly with ambient [glucose]. Electron microscopy detected glycogen granules primarily in myelinating Schwann cell cytoplasm and these diminished after exposure to aglycemia. During aglycemia, conduction failure in large myelinated axons (A fibers) mirrored the time-course of glycogen loss. Latency to CAP failure was directly related to nerve glycogen content at aglycemia onset. Glycogen did not benefit the function of slow-conducting, small diameter unmyelinated axons (C fibers) during aglycemia. Blocking glycogen breakdown pharmacologically accelerated CAP failure during aglycemia in A fibers, but not in C fibers. Lactate was as effective as glucose in supporting sciatic nerve function, and was continuously released into the extracellular space in the presence of glucose and fell rapidly during aglycemia. Interpretation Our findings indicated that glycogen is present in peripheral nerve, primarily in myelinating Schwann cells, and exclusively supports large diameter, myelinated axon conduction during aglycemia. Available evidence suggests that peripheral nerve glycogen breaks down during aglycemia and is passed, probably as lactate, to myelinated axons to support function. Unmyelinated axons are not protected by glycogen and are more vulnerable to dysfunction during periods of hypoglycemia. PMID:23034913

  12. Voxel-based lesion-symptom mapping of stroke lesions underlying somatosensory deficits

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    Sarah Meyer


    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between stroke lesion location and the resulting somatosensory deficit. We studied exteroceptive and proprioceptive somatosensory symptoms and stroke lesions in 38 patients with first-ever acute stroke. The Erasmus modified Nottingham Sensory Assessment was used to clinically evaluate somatosensory functioning in the arm and hand within the first week after stroke onset. Additionally, more objective measures such as the perceptual threshold of touch and somatosensory evoked potentials were recorded. Non-parametric voxel-based lesion-symptom mapping was performed to investigate lesion contribution to different somatosensory deficits in the upper limb. Additionally, structural connectivity of brain areas that demonstrated the strongest association with somatosensory symptoms was determined, using probabilistic fiber tracking based on diffusion tensor imaging data from a healthy age-matched sample. Voxels with a significant association to somatosensory deficits were clustered in two core brain regions: the central parietal white matter, also referred to as the sensory component of the superior thalamic radiation, and the parietal operculum close to the insular cortex, representing the secondary somatosensory cortex. Our objective recordings confirmed findings from clinical assessments. Probabilistic tracking connected the first region to thalamus, internal capsule, brain stem, postcentral gyrus, cerebellum, and frontal pathways, while the second region demonstrated structural connections to thalamus, insular and primary somatosensory cortex. This study reveals that stroke lesions in the sensory fibers of the superior thalamocortical radiation and the parietal operculum are significantly associated with multiple exteroceptive and proprioceptive deficits in the arm and hand.

  13. Distinct interneuron types express m2 muscarinic receptor immunoreactivity on their dendrites or axon terminals in the hippocampus. (United States)

    Hájos, N; Papp, E C; Acsády, L; Levey, A I; Freund, T F


    In previous studies m2 muscarinic acetylcholine receptor-immunoreactive interneurons and various types of m2-positive axon terminals have been described in the hippocampal formation. The aim of the present study was to identify the types of interneurons expressing m2 receptor and to examine whether the somadendritic and axonal m2 immunostaining labels the same or distinct cell populations. In the CA1 subfield, neurons immunoreactive for m2 have horizontal dendrites, they are located at the stratum oriens/alveus border and have an axon that project to the dendritic region of pyramidal cells. In the CA3 subfield and the hilus, m2-positive neurons are multipolar and are scattered in all layers except stratum lacunosum-moleculare. In stratum pyramidale of the CA1 and CA3 regions, striking axon terminal staining for m2 was observed, surrounding the somata and axon initial segments of pyramidal cells in a basket-like manner. The co-localization of m2 with neurochemical markers and GABA was studied using the "mirror" technique and fluorescent double-immunostaining at the light microscopic level and with double-labelling using colloidal gold-conjugated antisera and immunoperoxidase reaction (diaminobenzidine) at the electron microscopic level. GABA was shown to be present in the somata of most m2-immunoreactive interneurons, as well as in the majority of m2-positive terminals in all layers. The calcium-binding protein parvalbumin was absent from practically all m2-immunoreactive cell bodies and dendrites. In contrast, many of the terminals synapsing on pyramidal cell somata and axon initial segments co-localized parvalbumin and m2, suggesting a differential distribution of m2 receptor immunoreactivity on the axonal and somadendritic membrane of parvalbumin-containing basket and axo-axonic cells. The co-existence of m2 receptors with the calcium-binding protein calbindin and the neuropeptides cholecystokinin and vasoactive intestinal polypeptide was rare throughout the

  14. Axonal regeneration and development of de novo axons from distal dendrites of adult feline commissural interneurons after a proximal axotomy

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fenrich, Keith K; Skelton, Nicole; MacDermid, Victoria E


    Following proximal axotomy, several types of neurons sprout de novo axons from distal dendrites. These processes may represent a means of forming new circuits following spinal cord injury. However, it is not know whether mammalian spinal interneurons, axotomized as a result of a spinal cord injury......, develop de novo axons. Our goal was to determine whether spinal commissural interneurons (CINs), axotomized by 3-4-mm midsagittal transection at C3, form de novo axons from distal dendrites. All experiments were performed on adult cats. CINs in C3 were stained with extracellular injections of Neurobiotin...... at 4-5 weeks post injury. The somata of axotomized CINs were identified by the presence of immunoreactivity for the axonal growth-associated protein-43 (GAP-43). Nearly half of the CINs had de novo axons that emerged from distal dendrites. These axons lacked immunoreactivity for the dendritic protein...

  15. Cannabinoid receptor CB2 modulates axon guidance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Duff, Gabriel; Argaw, Anteneh; Cecyre, Bruno


    on axon guidance. These effects are specific to CB2R since no changes were observed in mice where the gene coding for this receptor was altered (cnr2 (-/-)). The CB2R induced morphological changes observed at the growth cone are PKA dependent and require the presence of the netrin-1 receptor, Deleted...... CB2R's implication in retinothalamic development. Overall, this study demonstrates that the contribution of endocannabinoids to brain development is not solely mediated by CB1R, but also involves CB2R....

  16. Death Receptor 6 Promotes Wallerian Degeneration in Peripheral Axons. (United States)

    Gamage, Kanchana K; Cheng, Irene; Park, Rachel E; Karim, Mardeen S; Edamura, Kazusa; Hughes, Christopher; Spano, Anthony J; Erisir, Alev; Deppmann, Christopher D


    Axon degeneration during development is required to sculpt a functional nervous system and is also a hallmark of pathological insult, such as injury [1, 2]. Despite similar morphological characteristics, very little overlap in molecular mechanisms has been reported between pathological and developmental degeneration [3-5]. In the peripheral nervous system (PNS), developmental axon pruning relies on receptor-mediated extrinsic degeneration mechanisms to determine which axons are maintained or degenerated [5-7]. Receptors have not been implicated in Wallerian axon degeneration; instead, axon autonomous, intrinsic mechanisms are thought to be the primary driver for this type of axon disintegration [8-10]. Here we survey the role of neuronally expressed, paralogous tumor necrosis factor receptor super family (TNFRSF) members in Wallerian degeneration. We find that an orphan receptor, death receptor 6 (DR6), is required to drive axon degeneration after axotomy in sympathetic and sensory neurons cultured in microfluidic devices. We sought to validate these in vitro findings in vivo using a transected sciatic nerve model. Consistent with the in vitro findings, DR6 -/- animals displayed preserved axons up to 4 weeks after injury. In contrast to phenotypes observed in Wld s and Sarm1 -/- mice, preserved axons in DR6 -/- animals display profound myelin remodeling. This indicates that deterioration of axons and myelin after axotomy are mechanistically distinct processes. Finally, we find that JNK signaling after injury requires DR6, suggesting a link between this novel extrinsic pathway and the axon autonomous, intrinsic pathways that have become established for Wallerian degeneration. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Quantification of dendritic and axonal growth after injury to the auditory system of the adult cricket Gryllus bimaculatus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandra ePfister


    Full Text Available Dendrite and axon growth and branching during development are regulated by a complex set of intracellular and external signals. However, the cues that maintain or influence adult neuronal morphology are less well understood. Injury and deafferentation tend to have negative effects on adult nervous systems. An interesting example of injury-induced compensatory growth is seen in the cricket, Gryllus bimaculatus. After unilateral loss of an ear in the adult cricket, auditory neurons within the central nervous system sprout to compensate for the injury. Specifically, after being deafferented, ascending neurons (AN-1 and AN-2 send dendrites across the midline of the prothoracic ganglion where they receive input from auditory afferents that project through the contralateral auditory nerve (N5. Deafferentation also triggers contralateral N5 axonal growth. In this study, we quantified AN dendritic and N5 axonal growth at 30 hours, as well as at 3, 5, 7, 14 and 20 days after deafferentation in adult crickets. Significant differences in the rates of dendritic growth between males and females were noted. In females, dendritic growth rates were non-linear; a rapid burst of dendritic extension in the first few days was followed by a plateau reached at 3 days after deafferentation. In males, however, dendritic growth rates were linear, with dendrites growing steadily over time and reaching lengths, on average, twice as long as in females. On the other hand, rates of N5 axonal growth showed no significant sexual dimorphism and were linear. Within each animal, the growth rates of dendrites and axons were not correlated, indicating that independent factors likely influence dendritic and axonal growth in response to injury in this system. Our findings provide a basis for future study of the cellular features that allow differing dendrite and axon growth patterns as well as sexually dimorphic dendritic growth in response to deafferentation.

  18. Axon guidance molecules in vascular patterning. (United States)

    Adams, Ralf H; Eichmann, Anne


    Endothelial cells (ECs) form extensive, highly branched and hierarchically organized tubular networks in vertebrates to ensure the proper distribution of molecular and cellular cargo in the vertebrate body. The growth of this vascular system during development, tissue repair or in disease conditions involves the sprouting, migration and proliferation of endothelial cells in a process termed angiogenesis. Surprisingly, specialized ECs, so-called tip cells, which lead and guide endothelial sprouts, share many feature with another guidance structure, the axonal growth cone. Tip cells are motile, invasive and extend numerous filopodial protrusions sensing growth factors, extracellular matrix and other attractive or repulsive cues in their tissue environment. Axonal growth cones and endothelial tip cells also respond to signals belonging to the same molecular families, such as Slits and Roundabouts, Netrins and UNC5 receptors, Semaphorins, Plexins and Neuropilins, and Eph receptors and ephrin ligands. Here we summarize fundamental principles of angiogenic growth, the selection and function of tip cells and the underlying regulation by guidance cues, the Notch pathway and vascular endothelial growth factor signaling.

  19. Somatosensory cortices are required for the acquisition of morphine-induced conditioned place preference.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhiqiang Meng

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Sensory system information is thought to play an important role in drug addiction related responses. However, how somatic sensory information participates in the drug related behaviors is still unclear. Many studies demonstrated that drug addiction represents a pathological usurpation of neural mechanisms of learning and memory that normally relate to the pursuit of rewards. Thus, elucidate the role of somatic sensory in drug related learning and memory is of particular importance to understand the neurobiological mechanisms of drug addiction. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In the present study, we investigated the role of somatosensory system in reward-related associative learning using the conditioned place preference model. Lesions were made in somatosensory cortices either before or after conditioning training. We found that lesion of somatosensory cortices before, rather than after morphine conditioning impaired the acquisition of place preference. CONCLUSION: These results demonstrate that somatosensory cortices are necessary for the acquisition but not retention of morphine induced place preference.

  20. Somatosensory Representations Link the Perception of Emotional Expressions and Sensory Experience. (United States)

    Kragel, Philip A; LaBar, Kevin S


    Studies of human emotion perception have linked a distributed set of brain regions to the recognition of emotion in facial, vocal, and body expressions. In particular, lesions to somatosensory cortex in the right hemisphere have been shown to impair recognition of facial and vocal expressions of emotion. Although these findings suggest that somatosensory cortex represents body states associated with distinct emotions, such as a furrowed brow or gaping jaw, functional evidence directly linking somatosensory activity and subjective experience during emotion perception is critically lacking. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging and multivariate decoding techniques, we show that perceiving vocal and facial expressions of emotion yields hemodynamic activity in right somatosensory cortex that discriminates among emotion categories, exhibits somatotopic organization, and tracks self-reported sensory experience. The findings both support embodied accounts of emotion and provide mechanistic insight into how emotional expressions are capable of biasing subjective experience in those who perceive them.

  1. Somatosensory amplification mediates sex differences in psychological distress among cardioverter-defibrillator patients

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Versteeg, Henneke; Baumert, Jens; Kolb, Christof


    The present study examined whether female patients with an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) report more psychological distress than male patients, and whether somatosensory amplification mediates this relationship. Design: Consecutive ICD patients (N = 241; 33% women) participating in...

  2. Quantifying interhemispheric symmetry of somatosensory evoked potentials with the intraclass correlation coefficient

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van de Wassenberg, Wilma J. G.; van der Hoeven, Johannes H.; Leenders, Klaus L.; Maurits, Natasha M.

    Although large intersubject variability is reported for cortical somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs), variability between hemispheres within one subject is thought to be small. Therefore, interhemispheric comparison of SEP waveforms might be clinically useful to detect unilateral abnormalities in

  3. Direct and crossed effects of somatosensory stimulation on neuronal excitability and motor performance in humans

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Veldman, M. P.; Maffiuletti, N. A.; Hallett, M.; Zijdewind, I.; Hortobagyi, T.


    This analytic review reports how prolonged periods of somatosensory electric stimulation (SES) with repetitive transcutaneous nerve stimulation can have 'direct' and 'crossed' effects on brain activation, corticospinal excitability, and motor performance. A review of 26 studies involving 315 healthy

  4. Parallel simulation of axon growth in the nervous system

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    J. Wensch; B.P. Sommeijer (Ben)


    textabstractIn this paper we discuss a model from neurobiology, which describes theoutgrowth of axons from neurons in the nervous system. The model combines ordinary differential equations, defining the movement of the axons, with parabolic partial differential equations. The parabolic equations

  5. A dam for retrograde axonal degeneration in multiple sclerosis?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Balk, L.J.; Twisk, J.W.R.; Steenwijk, M.D.; Daams, M.; Tewarie, P.; Killestein, J.; Uitdehaag, B.M.J.; Polman, C.H.; Petzold, A.F.S.


    Objective: Trans-synaptic axonal degeneration is a mechanism by which neurodegeneration can spread from a sick to a healthy neuron in the central nervous system. This study investigated to what extent trans-synaptic axonal degeneration takes place within the visual pathway in multiple sclerosis

  6. Is action potential threshold lowest in the axon?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kole, Maarten H. P.; Stuart, Greg J.


    Action potential threshold is thought to be lowest in the axon, but when measured using conventional techniques, we found that action potential voltage threshold of rat cortical pyramidal neurons was higher in the axon than at other neuronal locations. In contrast, both current threshold and voltage

  7. [Neurophysiological investigations of information processing in the somato-sensory system]. (United States)

    Kunesch, E


    The ability of the human hand to perform complex sensorimotor tasks such as tactile exploration and grasping is based on 1. exact encoding of somatosensory information by cutaneous mechanoreceptors, 2. elaborated processing of afferent signals in somatosensory relay stations and cortex fields, 3. rapid and effective interaction of sensory feedback with motor programs, and 4. different modes of sensory control, which can be switched over. (c) Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart-New York.

  8. SnoN facilitates axonal regeneration after spinal cord injury.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiun L Do

    Full Text Available Adult CNS neurons exhibit a reduced capacity for growth compared to developing neurons, due in part to downregulation of growth-associated genes as development is completed. We tested the hypothesis that SnoN, an embryonically regulated transcription factor that specifies growth of the axonal compartment, can enhance growth in injured adult neurons. In vitro, SnoN overexpression in dissociated adult DRG neuronal cultures significantly enhanced neurite outgrowth. Moreover, TGF-β1, a negative regulator of SnoN, inhibited neurite outgrowth, and SnoN over-expression overcame this inhibition. We then examined whether SnoN influenced axonal regeneration in vivo: indeed, expression of a mutant form of SnoN resistant to degradation significantly enhanced axonal regeneration following cervical spinal cord injury, despite peri-lesional upregulation of TGF-β1. Thus, a developmental mechanism that specifies extension of the axonal compartment also promotes axonal regeneration after adult CNS injury.

  9. Internodal function in normal and regenerated mammalian axons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Moldovan, M; Krarup, C


    AIM: Following Wallerian degeneration, peripheral myelinated axons have the ability to regenerate and, given a proper pathway, establish functional connections with targets. In spite of this capacity, the clinical outcome of nerve regeneration remains unsatisfactory. Early studies have found...... that regenerated internodes remain persistently short though this abnormality did not seem to influence recovery in conduction. It remains unclear to which extent abnormalities in axonal function itself may contribute to the poor outcome of nerve regeneration. METHODS: We review experimental evidence indicating...... that internodes play an active role in axonal function. RESULTS: By investigating internodal contribution to axonal excitability we have found evidence that axonal function may be permanently compromised in regenerated nerves. Furthermore, we illustrate that internodal function is also abnormal in regenerated...

  10. Motor Axonal Regeneration After Partial and Complete Spinal Cord Transection (United States)

    Lu, Paul; Blesch, Armin; Graham, Lori; Wang, Yaozhi; Samara, Ramsey; Banos, Karla; Haringer, Verena; Havton, Leif; Weishaupt, Nina; Bennett, David; Fouad, Karim; Tuszynski, Mark H.


    We subjected rats to either partial mid-cervical or complete upper thoracic spinal cord transections and examined whether combinatorial treatments support motor axonal regeneration into and beyond the lesion. Subjects received cAMP injections into brainstem reticular motor neurons to stimulate their endogenous growth state, bone marrow stromal cell grafts in lesion sites to provide permissive matrices for axonal growth, and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) gradients beyond the lesion to stimulate distal growth of motor axons. Findings were compared to several control groups. Combinatorial treatment generated motor axon regeneration beyond both C5 hemisection and complete transection sites. Yet despite formation of synapses with neurons below the lesion, motor outcomes worsened after partial cervical lesions and spasticity worsened after complete transection. These findings highlight the complexity of spinal cord repair, and the need for additional control and shaping of axonal regeneration. PMID:22699902

  11. Axon diameter mapping in crossing fibers with diffusion MRI

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Zhang, Hui; Dyrby, Tim B; Alexander, Daniel C


    This paper proposes a technique for a previously unaddressed problem, namely, mapping axon diameter in crossing fiber regions, using diffusion MRI. Direct measurement of tissue microstructure of this kind using diffusion MRI offers a new class of biomarkers that give more specific information about...... tissue than measures derived from diffusion tensor imaging. Most existing techniques for axon diameter mapping assume a single axon orientation in the tissue model, which limits their application to only the most coherently oriented brain white matter, such as the corpus callosum, where the single...... model to enable axon diameter mapping in voxels with crossing fibers. We show in simulation that the technique can provide robust axon diameter estimates in a two-fiber crossing with the crossing angle as small as 45 degrees. Using ex vivo imaging data, we further demonstrate the feasibility...

  12. Human perception of electrical stimulation on the surface of somatosensory cortex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shivayogi V Hiremath

    Full Text Available Recent advancement in electrocorticography (ECoG-based brain-computer interface technology has sparked a new interest in providing somatosensory feedback using ECoG electrodes, i.e., cortical surface electrodes. We conducted a 28-day study of cortical surface stimulation in an individual with arm paralysis due to brachial plexus injury to examine the sensation produced by electrical stimulation of the somatosensory cortex. A high-density ECoG grid was implanted over the somatosensory and motor cortices. Stimulation through cortical surface electrodes over the somatosensory cortex successfully elicited arm and hand sensations in our participant with chronic paralysis. There were three key findings. First, the intensity of perceived sensation increased monotonically with both pulse amplitude and pulse frequency. Second, changing pulse width changed the type of sensation based on qualitative description provided by the human participant. Third, the participant could distinguish between stimulation applied to two neighboring cortical surface electrodes, 4.5 mm center-to-center distance, for three out of seven electrode pairs tested. Taken together, we found that it was possible to modulate sensation intensity, sensation type, and evoke sensations across a range of locations from the fingers to the upper arm using different stimulation electrodes even in an individual with chronic impairment of somatosensory function. These three features are essential to provide effective somatosensory feedback for neuroprosthetic applications.

  13. Effect of somatosensory and neurofeedback training on balance in older healthy adults: a preliminary investigation. (United States)

    Azarpaikan, Atefeh; Taheri Torbati, Hamidreza


    The aim of this study was to assess the effectiveness of balance training with somatosensory and neurofeedback training on dynamic and static balance in healthy, elderly adults. The sample group consisted of 45 healthy adults randomly assigned to one of the three test groups: somatosensory, neurofeedback, and a control. Individualization of the balance program started with pre-tests for static and dynamic balances. Each group had 15- and 30-min training sessions. All groups were tested for static (postural stability) and dynamic balances (Berg Balance Scale) in acquisition and transfer tests (fall risk of stability and timed up and go). Improvements in static and dynamic balances were assessed by somatosensory and neurofeedback groups and then compared with the control group. Results indicated significant improvements in static and dynamic balances in both test groups in the acquisition test. Results revealed a significant improvement in the transfer test in the neurofeedback and somatosensory groups, in static and dynamic conditions, respectively. The findings suggest that these methods of balance training had a significant influence on balance. Both the methods are appropriate to prevent falling in adults. Neurofeedback training helped the participants to learn static balance, while somatosensory training was effective on dynamic balance learning. Further research is needed to assess the effects of longer and discontinuous stimulation with somatosensory and neurofeedback training on balance in elderly adults.

  14. Phantom somatosensory evoked potentials following selective intraneural electrical stimulation in two amputees. (United States)

    Granata, Giuseppe; Di Iorio, Riccardo; Romanello, Roberto; Iodice, Francesco; Raspopovic, Stanisa; Petrini, Francesco; Strauss, Ivo; Valle, Giacomo; Stieglitz, Thomas; Čvančara, Paul; Andreu, David; Divoux, Jean-Louis; Guiraud, David; Wauters, Loic; Hiairrassary, Arthur; Jensen, Winnie; Micera, Silvestro; Rossini, Paolo Maria


    The aim of the paper is to objectively demonstrate that amputees implanted with intraneural interfaces are truly able to feel a sensation in the phantom hand by recording "phantom" somatosensory evoked potentials from the corresponding brain areas. We implanted four transverse intrafascicular multichannel electrodes, available with percutaneous connections to a multichannel electrical stimulator, in the median and ulnar nerves of two left trans-radial amputees. Two channels of the implants that were able to elicit sensations during intraneural nerve stimulation were chosen, in both patients, for recording somatosensory evoked potentials. We recorded reproducible evoked responses by stimulating the median and the ulnar nerves in both cases. Latencies were in accordance with the arrival of somatosensory information to the primary somatosensory cortex. Our results provide evidence that sensations generated by intraneural stimulation are truly perceived by amputees and located in the phantom hand. Moreover, our results strongly suggest that sensations perceived in different parts of the phantom hand result in different evoked responses. Somatosensory evoked potentials obtained by selective intraneural electrical stimulation in amputee patients are a useful tool to provide an objective demonstration of somatosensory feedback in new generation bidirectional prostheses. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  15. Reduction of pain sensitivity after somatosensory therapy in adults with cerebral palsy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Inmaculada eRiquelme


    Full Text Available Objective. Pain and deficits in somatosensory processing seem to play a relevant role in cerebral palsy (CP. Rehabilitation techniques based on neuroplasticity mechanisms may induce powerful changes in the organization of the primary somatosensory cortex and have been proved to reduce levels of pain and discomfort in neurological pathologies. However, little is known about the efficacy of such interventions for pain sensitivity in CP individuals. Methods. Adults with cerebral palsy participated in the study and were randomly assigned to the intervention (n=17 or the control group (n=20. The intervention group received a somatosensory therapy including 4 types of exercises (touch, proprioception, vibration, and stereognosis. All participants were asked to continue their standardized motor therapy during the study period. Several somatosensory (pain and touch thresholds, stereognosis, propioception, texture recognition and motor parameters (fine motor skills were assessed before, immediately after and three months after the therapy (follow-up. Results. Participants of the intervention group showed a significant reduction on pain sensitivity after treatment and at follow-up after three months, whereas participants in the control group displayed increasing pain sensitivity over time. No improvements were found on touch sensitivity, proprioception, texture recognition or fine motor skills. Conclusions. Data suggest the possibility that somatosensory therapy was effective in eliciting changes in central somatosensory processing. This hypothesis may have implications for future neuromodulatory treatment of pain complaints in children and adults with cerebral palsy.

  16. Axonal loss in the multiple sclerosis spinal cord revisited. (United States)

    Petrova, Natalia; Carassiti, Daniele; Altmann, Daniel R; Baker, David; Schmierer, Klaus


    Preventing chronic disease deterioration is an unmet need in people with multiple sclerosis, where axonal loss is considered a key substrate of disability. Clinically, chronic multiple sclerosis often presents as progressive myelopathy. Spinal cord cross-sectional area (CSA) assessed using MRI predicts increasing disability and has, by inference, been proposed as an indirect index of axonal degeneration. However, the association between CSA and axonal loss, and their correlation with demyelination, have never been systematically investigated using human post mortem tissue. We extensively sampled spinal cords of seven women and six men with multiple sclerosis (mean disease duration= 29 years) and five healthy controls to quantify axonal density and its association with demyelination and CSA. 396 tissue blocks were embedded in paraffin and immuno-stained for myelin basic protein and phosphorylated neurofilaments. Measurements included total CSA, areas of (i) lateral cortico-spinal tracts, (ii) gray matter, (iii) white matter, (iv) demyelination, and the number of axons within the lateral cortico-spinal tracts. Linear mixed models were used to analyze relationships. In multiple sclerosis CSA reduction at cervical, thoracic and lumbar levels ranged between 19 and 24% with white (19-24%) and gray (17-21%) matter atrophy contributing equally across levels. Axonal density in multiple sclerosis was lower by 57-62% across all levels and affected all fibers regardless of diameter. Demyelination affected 24-48% of the gray matter, most extensively at the thoracic level, and 11-13% of the white matter, with no significant differences across levels. Disease duration was associated with reduced axonal density, however not with any area index. Significant association was detected between focal demyelination and decreased axonal density. In conclusion, over nearly 30 years multiple sclerosis reduces axonal density by 60% throughout the spinal cord. Spinal cord cross sectional area

  17. Unimodal primary sensory cortices are directly connected by long-range horizontal projections in the rat sensory cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jimmy eStehberg


    Full Text Available Research based on functional imaging and neuronal recordings in the barrel cortex subdivision of primary somatosensory cortex (SI of the adult rat has revealed novel aspects of structure-function relationships in this cortex. Specifically, it has demonstrated that single whisker stimulation evokes subthreshold neuronal activity that spreads symmetrically within gray matter from the appropriate barrel area, crosses cytoarchitectural borders of SI and reaches deeply into other unimodal primary cortices such as primary auditory (AI and primary visual (VI. It was further demonstrated that this spread is supported by a spatially matching underlying diffuse network of border-crossing, long-range projections that could also reach deeply into AI and VI. Here we seek to determine whether such a network of border-crossing, long-range projections is unique to barrel cortex or characterizes also other primary, unimodal sensory cortices and therefore could directly connect them. Using anterograde (BDA and retrograde (CTb tract-tracing techniques, we demonstrate that such diffuse horizontal networks directly and mutually connect VI, AI and SI. These findings suggest that diffuse, border-crossing axonal projections connecting directly primary cortices are an important organizational motif common to all major primary sensory cortices in the rat. Potential implications of these findings for topics including cortical structure-function relationships, multisensory integration, functional imaging and cortical parcellation are discussed.

  18. 4S RNA is transported axonally in normal and regenerating axons of the sciatic nerves of rats

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lindquist, T D; Ingoglia, N A; Gould, R M [Departments of Physiology and Neuroscience, New Jersey Medical School, Newark, NJ, USA


    Experiments were designed to determine if following injection of (/sup 3/H)uridine into the lumbar spinal cord of the rat, (/sup 3/H)RNA could be demonstrated within axons of the sciatic nerve, and if 4S RNA is the predominant predominant RNA species present in these axons.

  19. Nucleus of the solitary tract in the C57BL/6J mouse: Subnuclear parcellation, chorda tympani nerve projections, and brainstem connections. (United States)

    Ganchrow, Donald; Ganchrow, Judith R; Cicchini, Vanessa; Bartel, Dianna L; Kaufman, Daniel; Girard, David; Whitehead, Mark C


    The nucleus of the solitary tract (NST) processes gustatory and related somatosensory information rostrally and general viscerosensory information caudally. To compare its connections with those of other rodents, this study in the C57BL/6J mouse provides a subnuclear cytoarchitectonic parcellation (Nissl stain) of the NST into rostral, intermediate, and caudal divisions. Subnuclei are further characterized by NADPH staining and P2X2 immunoreactivity (IR). Cholera toxin subunit B (CTb) labeling revealed those NST subnuclei receiving chorda tympani nerve (CT) afferents, those connecting with the parabrachial nucleus (PBN) and reticular formation (RF), and those interconnecting NST subnuclei. CT terminals are densest in the rostral central (RC) and medial (M) subnuclei; less dense in the rostral lateral (RL) subnucleus; and sparse in the ventral (V), ventral lateral (VL), and central lateral (CL) subnuclei. CTb injection into the PBN retrogradely labels cells in the aforementioned subnuclei; RC and M providing the largest source of PBN projection neurons. Pontine efferent axons terminate mainly in V and rostral medial (RM) subnuclei. CTb injection into the medullary RF labels cells and axonal endings predominantly in V at rostral and intermediate NST levels. Small CTb injections within the NST label extensive projections from the rostral division to caudal subnuclei. Projections from the caudal division primarily interconnect subnuclei confined to the caudal division of the NST; they also connect with the area postrema. P2X2 -IR identifies probable vagal nerve terminals in the central (Ce) subnucleus in the intermediate/caudal NST. Ce also shows intense NADPH staining and does not project to the PBN. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  20. More than skin deep: body representation beyond primary somatosensory cortex. (United States)

    Longo, Matthew R; Azañón, Elena; Haggard, Patrick


    The neural circuits underlying initial sensory processing of somatic information are relatively well understood. In contrast, the processes that go beyond primary somatosensation to create more abstract representations related to the body are less clear. In this review, we focus on two classes of higher-order processing beyond somatosensation. Somatoperception refers to the process of perceiving the body itself, and particularly of ensuring somatic perceptual constancy. We review three key elements of somatoperception: (a) remapping information from the body surface into an egocentric reference frame, (b) exteroceptive perception of objects in the external world through their contact with the body, and (c) interoceptive percepts about the nature and state of the body itself. Somatorepresentation, in contrast, refers to the essentially cognitive process of constructing semantic knowledge and attitudes about the body, including: (d) lexical-semantic knowledge about bodies generally and one's own body specifically, (e) configural knowledge about the structure of bodies, (f) emotions and attitudes directed towards one's own body, and (g) the link between physical body and psychological self. We review a wide range of neuropsychological, neuroimaging and neurophysiological data to explore the dissociation between these different aspects of higher somatosensory function. 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Posterior insular cortex - a site of vestibular-somatosensory interaction? (United States)

    Baier, Bernhard; Zu Eulenburg, Peter; Best, Christoph; Geber, Christian; Müller-Forell, Wibke; Birklein, Frank; Dieterich, Marianne


    Background In previous imaging studies the insular cortex (IC) has been identified as an essential part of the processing of a wide spectrum of perception and sensorimotor integration. Yet, there are no systematic lesion studies in a sufficient number of patients examining whether processing of vestibular and the interaction of somatosensory and vestibular signals take place in the IC. Methods We investigated acute stroke patients with lesions affecting the IC in order to fill this gap. In detail, we explored signs of a vestibular tone imbalance such as the deviation of the subjective visual vertical (SVV). We applied voxel-lesion behaviour mapping analysis in 27 patients with acute unilateral stroke. Results Our data demonstrate that patients with lesions of the posterior IC have an abnormal tilt of SVV. Furthermore, re-analysing data of 20 patients from a previous study, we found a positive correlation between thermal perception contralateral to the stroke and the severity of the SVV tilt. Conclusions We conclude that the IC is a sensory brain region where different modalities might interact.

  2. Sensory adaptation to electrical stimulation of the somatosensory nerves. (United States)

    Graczyk, Emily Lauren; Delhaye, Benoit; Schiefer, Matthew A; Bensmaia, Sliman J; Tyler, Dustin J


    Sensory systems adapt their sensitivity to ambient stimulation levels to improve their responsiveness to changes in stimulation. The sense of touch is also subject to adaptation, as evidenced by the desensitization produced by prolonged vibratory stimulation of the skin. Electrical stimulation of nerves elicits tactile sensations that can convey feedback for bionic limbs. In this study, we investigate whether artificial touch is also subject to adaptation, despite the fact that the peripheral mechanotransducers are bypassed. Approach: Using well-established psychophysical paradigms, we characterize the time course and magnitude of sensory adaptation caused by extended electrical stimulation of the residual somatosensory nerves in three human amputees implanted with cuff electrodes. Main results: We find that electrical stimulation of the nerve also induces perceptual adaptation that recovers after cessation of the stimulus. The time course and magnitude of electrically-induced adaptation are equivalent to their mechanically-induced counterparts. Significance: We conclude that, in natural touch, the process of mechanotransduction is not required for adaptation, and artificial touch naturally experiences adaptation-induced adjustments of the dynamic range of sensations. Further, as it does for native hands, adaptation confers to bionic hands enhanced sensitivity to changes in stimulation and thus a more natural sensory experience. . Creative Commons Attribution license.

  3. [Normative aspects of somatosensory evoked P300 components]. (United States)

    Louzã Neto, M R; Maurer, K; Neuhauser, B


    Using a somatosensory version of the oddball-paradigma the influence of age and gender on the P300-component and the comparison of the potential after stimulation of the right and left median nerve was studied in 30 healthy right handed volunteers (age: 20-35 years). Latency, amplitude, area and duration of the P300-potential were analysed. No relationship between age, gender and the P300-parameters were observed. The amplitude and the area of the potential obtained from the F3 electrode were greater after stimulation of the right median nerve compared to the potential after stimulation of the left median nerve. All other results were not significantly different. Strong positive correlations between the results after stimulation of the right and left median nerve were observed. These results showed that by a young group of volunteers age and gender did not influence the P300-component. Although the P300-Parameters had a between-subject variability, their mean remained constant over the study, their correlation coefficients were strong positive and the side of stimulation did not influence them (except for the electrode F3).

  4. Neuron Morphology Influences Axon Initial Segment Plasticity. (United States)

    Gulledge, Allan T; Bravo, Jaime J


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

  5. [The role of the cervical spine and the craniomandibular system in the pathogenesis of tinnitus. Somatosensory tinnitus]. (United States)

    Biesinger, E; Reisshauer, A; Mazurek, B


    The causes of tinnitus, vertigo, and hearing disturbances may be pathological processes in the cervical spine and temporomaxillary joint. In these cases, tinnitus is called somatosensory tinnitus (SST). For afferences of the cervical spine, projections of neuronal connections in the cochlear nucleus were found. A reflex-like impact of the cervical spine on the cochlear nucleus can be assumed. The tinnitus treatment concept of the Charité University Hospital in Berlin involves the cooperation of ENT specialists with many other disciplines in an outpatient clinic. A standardized examination protocol has been established, and physical therapy has been integrated into the interdisciplinary tinnitus treatment. For tinnitus-modulating therapy of muscular trigger points, local anesthetics as well as self-massage or treatment by a physiotherapist or osteopath are useful.

  6. Pain from Dental Implant Placement, Inflammatory Pulpitis Pain, and Neuropathic Pain Present Different Somatosensory Profiles. (United States)

    Porporatti, André Luís; Bonjardim, Leonardo Rigoldi; Stuginski-Barbosa, Juliana; Bonfante, Estevam Augusto; Costa, Yuri Martins; Rodrigues Conti, Paulo César


    To address the two following questions: (1) What kind of somatosensory abnormalities may be characterized in patients receiving dental implants (IMP), in ongoing inflammatory dental pulpitis (IP) patients, and in neuropathic pain (atypical odontalgia [AO]) patients? and (2) What sort of sensory and neural changes may result from dental implant placement surgery and pulpectomy? A total of 60 subjects were divided into three groups: the IMP (n = 20), IP (n = 20), and AO groups (n = 20). Quantitative sensory testing (QST) was performed preoperatively (baseline) for all three groups and postoperatively at 1 month and 3 months after dental implant placement or pulpectomy (in the IMP group and IP group, respectively). Statistical analyses were completed with one-way and two-way analysis of variance and z score transformations (α = 5%). The main findings of this study indicated that: (1) Elevations in mechanical detection threshold (MDT) and in current perception threshold (CPT) related to C-fiber activation, indicating a loss of function, were found at baseline in IP patients; (2) Somatosensory abnormalities such as allodynia, reduced MDT and mechanical pain threshold (MPT), and impaired pain modulation were found in AO patients; (3) No somatosensory alterations after implant placement were found in the IMP group; and (4) Somatosensory alterations in the form of reduction in the CPT related to C-fiber activation were reported 3 months after pulpectomy in the IP group. This study showed that somatosensory abnormalities were evident in AO and IP patients, and somatosensory alterations were seen in IP patients even 3 months after pulpectomy. However, no somatosensory alterations were seen after implant placement.

  7. Nociceptive afferents to the premotor neurons that send axons simultaneously to the facial and hypoglossal motoneurons by means of axon collaterals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yulin Dong

    Full Text Available It is well known that the brainstem premotor neurons of the facial nucleus and hypoglossal nucleus coordinate orofacial nociceptive reflex (ONR responses. However, whether the brainstem PNs receive the nociceptive projection directly from the caudal spinal trigeminal nucleus is still kept unclear. Our present study focuses on the distribution of premotor neurons in the ONR pathways of rats and the collateral projection of the premotor neurons which are involved in the brainstem local pathways of the orofacial nociceptive reflexes of rat. Retrograde tracer Fluoro-gold (FG or FG/tetramethylrhodamine-dextran amine (TMR-DA were injected into the VII or/and XII, and anterograde tracer biotinylated dextran amine (BDA was injected into the caudal spinal trigeminal nucleus (Vc. The tracing studies indicated that FG-labeled neurons receiving BDA-labeled fibers from the Vc were mainly distributed bilaterally in the parvicellular reticular formation (PCRt, dorsal and ventral medullary reticular formation (MdD, MdV, supratrigeminal nucleus (Vsup and parabrachial nucleus (PBN with an ipsilateral dominance. Some FG/TMR-DA double-labeled premotor neurons, which were observed bilaterally in the PCRt, MdD, dorsal part of the MdV, peri-motor nucleus regions, contacted with BDA-labeled axonal terminals and expressed c-fos protein-like immunoreactivity which induced by subcutaneous injection of formalin into the lip. After retrograde tracer wheat germ agglutinated horseradish peroxidase (WGA-HRP was injected into VII or XII and BDA into Vc, electron microscopic study revealed that some BDA-labeled axonal terminals made mainly asymmetric synapses on the dendritic and somatic profiles of WGA-HRP-labeled premotor neurons. These data indicate that some premotor neurons could integrate the orofacial nociceptive input from the Vc and transfer these signals simultaneously to different brainstem motonuclei by axonal collaterals.

  8. Rhythm generation through period concatenation in rat somatosensory cortex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark A Kramer


    Full Text Available Rhythmic voltage oscillations resulting from the summed activity of neuronal populations occur in many nervous systems. Contemporary observations suggest that coexistent oscillations interact and, in time, may switch in dominance. We recently reported an example of these interactions recorded from in vitro preparations of rat somatosensory cortex. We found that following an initial interval of coexistent gamma ( approximately 25 ms period and beta2 ( approximately 40 ms period rhythms in the superficial and deep cortical layers, respectively, a transition to a synchronous beta1 ( approximately 65 ms period rhythm in all cortical layers occurred. We proposed that the switch to beta1 activity resulted from the novel mechanism of period concatenation of the faster rhythms: gamma period (25 ms+beta2 period (40 ms = beta1 period (65 ms. In this article, we investigate in greater detail the fundamental mechanisms of the beta1 rhythm. To do so we describe additional in vitro experiments that constrain a biologically realistic, yet simplified, computational model of the activity. We use the model to suggest that the dynamic building blocks (or motifs of the gamma and beta2 rhythms combine to produce a beta1 oscillation that exhibits cross-frequency interactions. Through the combined approach of in vitro experiments and mathematical modeling we isolate the specific components that promote or destroy each rhythm. We propose that mechanisms vital to establishing the beta1 oscillation include strengthened connections between a population of deep layer intrinsically bursting cells and a transition from antidromic to orthodromic spike generation in these cells. We conclude that neural activity in the superficial and deep cortical layers may temporally combine to generate a slower oscillation.

  9. Using constellation pharmacology to define comprehensively a somatosensory neuronal subclass (United States)

    Teichert, Russell W.; Memon, Tosifa; Aman, Joseph W.; Olivera, Baldomero M.


    Change is intrinsic to nervous systems; change is required for learning and conditioning and occurs with disease progression, normal development, and aging. To better understand mammalian nervous systems and effectively treat nervous-system disorders, it is essential to track changes in relevant individual neurons. A critical challenge is to identify and characterize the specific cell types involved and the molecular-level changes that occur in each. Using an experimental strategy called constellation pharmacology, we demonstrate that we can define a specific somatosensory neuronal subclass, cold thermosensors, across different species and track changes in these neurons as a function of development. Cold thermosensors are uniformly responsive to menthol and innocuous cool temperature (17 °C), indicating that they express TRPM8 channels. A subset of cold thermosensors expressed α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) but not other nAChR subtypes. Differences in temperature threshold of cold thermosensors correlated with functional expression of voltage-gated K channels Kv1.1/1.2: Relatively higher expression of KV1.1/1.2 channels resulted in a higher threshold response to cold temperature. Other signaling components varied during development and between species. In cold thermosensors of neonatal mice and rats, ATP receptors were functionally expressed, but the expression disappeared with development. This developmental change occurred earlier in low-threshold than high-threshold cold thermosensors. Most rat cold thermosensors expressed TRPA1 channels, whereas mouse cold thermosensors did not. The broad implications of this study are that it is now feasible to track changes in receptor and ion-channel expression in individual neuronal subclasses as a function of development, learning, disease, or aging. PMID:24469798

  10. Sensory disturbance, CT, and somatosensory evoked potentials in thalamic hemorrhages

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Koga, Hisanobu; Miyazaki, Takayoshi; Miyazaki, Hisaya


    Thalamic hemorrhages often lead to sensory disturbances. However, no effective method for the evaluation of their prognoses has yet been clinically utilized. The somatosensory evoked potential (SEP) has been reported as an effective method, but it remains controversial. A CT scan is eminently suitable for determining the size and position of the hemorrhage. However, the correlation between the localization of the hematoma on the CT scan and the sensory distrubance has not been investigated fully. The authors selected 20 cases with the chronic stage of a thalamic hemorrhage. Each one was clinically evaluated as to sensory disturbance; they were then classified into the following five groups: Group 1: no sensory deficit (3 cases); Group 2: complete recovery from initial deficit (2 cases); Group 3: mild hypesthesia (5 cases); Group 4: severe hypesthesia (5 cases), and Group 5: paresthesia or dysesthesia (5 cases). Also, the CT scan was investigated with regard to the localization of the hematoma and the SEP. We could thus find a characteristic pattern in each group. The results may be summarized as follows. 1. The correlation between the degree of the sensory disturbance and the size and expansion of the hematoma was clearly detected. Especially, the most severe sensory disturbance was found in the hematoma extending to the lateral nuclear and ventral nuclear regions. 2. In Group 1 and 2, each SEP component (N 1 N 2 N 3 ) was shown to be normal. In Group 3, SEP components could be detected, but not completely. In Group 4, no components at all could be found. 3. In Group 5, all cases were small hematoma localized in the lateral nuclear region of the thalamus, while the N 3 components were prolonged on the SEP findings. The authors demonstrate the results and discuss the correlation between the sensory disturbance and the CT or SEP findings. (author)

  11. Axonal Membranes and Their Domains: Assembly and Function of the Axon Initial Segment and Node of Ranvier

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew D. Nelson


    Full Text Available Neurons are highly specialized cells of the nervous system that receive, process and transmit electrical signals critical for normal brain function. Here, we review the intricate organization of axonal membrane domains that facilitate rapid action potential conduction underlying communication between complex neuronal circuits. Two critical excitable domains of vertebrate axons are the axon initial segment (AIS and the nodes of Ranvier, which are characterized by the high concentrations of voltage-gated ion channels, cell adhesion molecules and specialized cytoskeletal networks. The AIS is located at the proximal region of the axon and serves as the site of action potential initiation, while nodes of Ranvier, gaps between adjacent myelin sheaths, allow rapid propagation of the action potential through saltatory conduction. The AIS and nodes of Ranvier are assembled by ankyrins, spectrins and their associated binding partners through the clustering of membrane proteins and connection to the underlying cytoskeleton network. Although the AIS and nodes of Ranvier share similar protein composition, their mechanisms of assembly are strikingly different. Here we will cover the mechanisms of formation and maintenance of these axonal excitable membrane domains, specifically highlighting the similarities and differences between them. We will also discuss recent advances in super resolution fluorescence imaging which have elucidated the arrangement of the submembranous axonal cytoskeleton revealing a surprising structural organization necessary to maintain axonal organization and function. Finally, human mutations in axonal domain components have been associated with a growing number of neurological disorders including severe cognitive dysfunction, epilepsy, autism, neurodegenerative diseases and psychiatric disorders. Overall, this review highlights the assembly, maintenance and function of axonal excitable domains, particularly the AIS and nodes of

  12. Network state-dependent inhibition of identified hippocampal CA3 axo-axonic cells in vivo (United States)

    Tukker, John J; Klausberger, Thomas; Somogyi, Peter


    Hippocampal sharp waves are population discharges initiated by an unknown mechanism in pyramidal cell networks of CA3. Axo-axonic cells (AACs) regulate action potential generation through GABAergic synapses on the axon initial segment. We found that CA3 AACs in anesthetized rats and AACs in freely moving rats stopped firing during sharp waves, when pyramidal cells fire most. AACs fired strongly and rhythmically around the peak of theta oscillations, when pyramidal cells fire at low probability. Distinguishing AACs from other parvalbumin-expressing interneurons by their lack of detectable SATB1 transcription factor immunoreactivity, we discovered a somatic GABAergic input originating from the medial septum that preferentially targets AACs. We recorded septo-hippocampal GABAergic cells that were activated during hippocampal sharp waves and projected to CA3. We hypothesize that inhibition of AACs, and the resulting subcellular redistribution of inhibition from the axon initial segment to other pyramidal cell domains, is a necessary condition for the emergence of sharp waves promoting memory consolidation. PMID:24141313

  13. Reliability of Visual and Somatosensory Feedback in Skilled Movement: The Role of the Cerebellum. (United States)

    Mizelle, J C; Oparah, Alexis; Wheaton, Lewis A


    The integration of vision and somatosensation is required to allow for accurate motor behavior. While both sensory systems contribute to an understanding of the state of the body through continuous updating and estimation, how the brain processes unreliable sensory information remains to be fully understood in the context of complex action. Using functional brain imaging, we sought to understand the role of the cerebellum in weighting visual and somatosensory feedback by selectively reducing the reliability of each sense individually during a tool use task. We broadly hypothesized upregulated activation of the sensorimotor and cerebellar areas during movement with reduced visual reliability, and upregulated activation of occipital brain areas during movement with reduced somatosensory reliability. As specifically compared to reduced somatosensory reliability, we expected greater activations of ipsilateral sensorimotor cerebellum for intact visual and somatosensory reliability. Further, we expected that ipsilateral posterior cognitive cerebellum would be affected with reduced visual reliability. We observed that reduced visual reliability results in a trend towards the relative consolidation of sensorimotor activation and an expansion of cerebellar activation. In contrast, reduced somatosensory reliability was characterized by the absence of cerebellar activations and a trend towards the increase of right frontal, left parietofrontal activation, and temporo-occipital areas. Our findings highlight the role of the cerebellum for specific aspects of skillful motor performance. This has relevance to understanding basic aspects of brain functions underlying sensorimotor integration, and provides a greater understanding of cerebellar function in tool use motor control.

  14. Neurotrophin Signaling via Long-Distance Axonal Transport (United States)

    Chowdary, Praveen D.; Che, Dung L.; Cui, Bianxiao


    Neurotrophins are a family of target-derived growth factors that support survival, development, and maintenance of innervating neurons. Owing to the unique architecture of neurons, neurotrophins that act locally on the axonal terminals must convey their signals across the entire axon for subsequent regulation of gene transcription in the cell nucleus. This long-distance retrograde signaling, a motor-driven process that can take hours or days, has been a subject of intense interest. In the last decade, live-cell imaging with high sensitivity has significantly increased our capability to track the transport of neurotrophins, their receptors, and subsequent signals in real time. This review summarizes recent research progress in understanding neurotrophin-receptor interactions at the axonal terminal and their transport dynamics along the axon. We emphasize high-resolution studies at the single-molecule level and also discuss recent technical advances in the field.

  15. Spontaneous axonal regeneration in rodent spinal cord after ischemic injury

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    von Euler, Mia; Janson, A M; Larsen, Jytte Overgaard


    cells, while other fibers were unmyelinated. Immunohistochemistry demonstrated that some of the regenerated fibers were tyrosine hydroxylase- or serotonin-immunoreactive, indicating a central origin. These findings suggest that there is a considerable amount of spontaneous regeneration after spinal cord......Here we present evidence for spontaneous and long-lasting regeneration of CNS axons after spinal cord lesions in adult rats. The length of 200 kD neurofilament (NF)-immunolabeled axons was estimated after photochemically induced ischemic spinal cord lesions using a stereological tool. The total...... length of all NF-immunolabeled axons within the lesion cavities was increased 6- to 10-fold at 5, 10, and 15 wk post-lesion compared with 1 wk post-surgery. In ultrastructural studies we found the putatively regenerating axons within the lesion to be associated either with oligodendrocytes or Schwann...

  16. Fiber Optic Detection of Action Potentials in Axons

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Smela, Elisabeth


    In prior exploratory research, we had designed a fiber optic sensor utilizing a long period Bragg grating for the purpose of detecting action potentials in axons optically, through a change in index...

  17. Functional characterization and axonal transport of quantum dot labeled BDNF


    Xie, Wenjun; Zhang, Kai; Cui, Bianxiao


    Brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) plays a key role in the growth, development and maintenance of the central and peripheral nervous systems. Exogenous BDNF activates its membrane receptors at the axon terminal, and subsequently sends regulation signals to the cell body. To understand how BDNF signal propagates in neurons, it is important to follow the trafficking of BDNF after it is internalized at the axon terminal. Here we labeled BDNF with bright, photostable quantum dot (QD-BDNF) a...

  18. Modality-Specific Axonal Regeneration: Towards selective regenerative neural interfaces

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Parisa eLotfi


    Full Text Available Regenerative peripheral nerve interfaces have been proposed as viable alternatives for the natural control of robotic prosthetic devices. However, sensory and motor axons at the neural interface are of mixed submodality types, which difficult the specific recording from motor axons and the eliciting of precise sensory modalities through selective stimulation. Here we evaluated the possibility of using type-specific neurotrophins to preferentially entice the regeneration of defined axonal populations from transected peripheral nerves into separate compartments. Segregation of mixed sensory fibers from dorsal root ganglion neurons was evaluated in vitro by compartmentalized diffusion delivery of nerve growth factor (NGF and neurotrophin-3 (NT-3, to preferentially entice the growth of TrkA+ nociceptive and TrkC+ proprioceptive subsets of sensory neurons, respectively. The average axon length in the NGF channel increased 2.5 fold compared to that in saline or NT-3, whereas the number of branches increased 3 fold in the NT-3 channels. These results were confirmed using a 3-D Y-shaped in vitro assay showing that the arm containing NGF was able to entice a 5-fold increase in axonal length of unbranched fibers. To address if such segregation can be enticed in vivo, a Y-shaped tubing was used to allow regeneration of the transected adult rat sciatic nerve into separate compartments filled with either NFG or NT-3. A significant increase in the number of CGRP+ pain fibers were attracted towards the sural nerve, while N-52+ large diameter axons were observed in the tibial and NT-3 compartments. This study demonstrates the guided enrichment of sensory axons in specific regenerative chambers, and supports the notion that neurotrophic factors can be used to segregate sensory and perhaps motor axons in separate peripheral interfaces.

  19. Self-amplifying autocrine actions of BDNF in axon development


    Cheng, Pei-Lin; Song, Ai-Hong; Wong, Yu-Hui; Wang, Sheng; Zhang, Xiang; Poo, Mu-Ming


    A critical step in neuronal development is the formation of axon/dendrite polarity, a process involving symmetry breaking in the newborn neuron. Local self-amplifying processes could enhance and stabilize the initial asymmetry in the distribution of axon/dendrite determinants, but the identity of these processes remains elusive. We here report that BDNF, a secreted neurotrophin essential for the survival and differentiation of many neuronal populations, serves as a self-amplifying autocrine f...

  20. Fcγ receptor-mediated inflammation inhibits axon regeneration.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gang Zhang

    Full Text Available Anti-glycan/ganglioside antibodies are the most common immune effectors found in patients with Guillain-Barré Syndrome, which is a peripheral autoimmune neuropathy. We previously reported that disease-relevant anti-glycan autoantibodies inhibited axon regeneration, which echo the clinical association of these antibodies and poor recovery in Guillain-Barré Syndrome. However, the specific molecular and cellular elements involved in this antibody-mediated inhibition of axon regeneration are not previously defined. This study examined the role of Fcγ receptors and macrophages in the antibody-mediated inhibition of axon regeneration. A well characterized antibody passive transfer sciatic nerve crush and transplant models were used to study the anti-ganglioside antibody-mediated inhibition of axon regeneration in wild type and various mutant and transgenic mice with altered expression of specific Fcγ receptors and macrophage/microglia populations. Outcome measures included behavior, electrophysiology, morphometry, immunocytochemistry, quantitative real-time PCR, and western blotting. We demonstrate that the presence of autoantibodies, directed against neuronal/axonal cell surface gangliosides, in the injured mammalian peripheral nerves switch the proregenerative inflammatory environment to growth inhibitory milieu by engaging specific activating Fcγ receptors on recruited monocyte-derived macrophages to cause severe inhibition of axon regeneration. Our data demonstrate that the antibody orchestrated Fcγ receptor-mediated switch in inflammation is one mechanism underlying inhibition of axon regeneration. These findings have clinical implications for nerve repair and recovery in antibody-mediated immune neuropathies. Our results add to the complexity of axon regeneration in injured peripheral and central nervous systems as adverse effects of B cells and autoantibodies on neural injury and repair are increasingly recognized.

  1. Dendrosomatic Sonic Hedgehog Signaling in Hippocampal Neurons Regulates Axon Elongation (United States)

    Petralia, Ronald S.; Ott, Carolyn; Wang, Ya-Xian; Lippincott-Schwartz, Jennifer; Mattson, Mark P.


    The presence of Sonic Hedgehog (Shh) and its signaling components in the neurons of the hippocampus raises a question about what role the Shh signaling pathway may play in these neurons. We show here that activation of the Shh signaling pathway stimulates axon elongation in rat hippocampal neurons. This Shh-induced effect depends on the pathway transducer Smoothened (Smo) and the transcription factor Gli1. The axon itself does not respond directly to Shh; instead, the Shh signal transduction originates from the somatodendritic region of the neurons and occurs in neurons with and without detectable primary cilia. Upon Shh stimulation, Smo localization to dendrites increases significantly. Shh pathway activation results in increased levels of profilin1 (Pfn1), an actin-binding protein. Mutations in Pfn1's actin-binding sites or reduction of Pfn1 eliminate the Shh-induced axon elongation. These findings indicate that Shh can regulate axon growth, which may be critical for development of hippocampal neurons. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Although numerous signaling mechanisms have been identified that act directly on axons to regulate their outgrowth, it is not known whether signals transduced in dendrites may also affect axon outgrowth. We describe here a transcellular signaling pathway in embryonic hippocampal neurons in which activation of Sonic Hedgehog (Shh) receptors in dendrites stimulates axon growth. The pathway involves the dendritic-membrane-associated Shh signal transducer Smoothened (Smo) and the transcription factor Gli, which induces the expression of the gene encoding the actin-binding protein profilin 1. Our findings suggest scenarios in which stimulation of Shh in dendrites results in accelerated outgrowth of the axon, which therefore reaches its presumptive postsynaptic target cell more quickly. By this mechanism, Shh may play critical roles in the development of hippocampal neuronal circuits. PMID:26658865

  2. Kinematics of turnaround and retrograde axonal transport

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Snyder, R.E.


    Rapid axonal transport of a pulse of 35 S-methionine-labelled material was studied in vitro in the sensory neurons of amphibian sciatic nerve using a position-sensitive detector. For 10 nerves studied at 23.0 +/- 0.2 degrees C it was found that a pulse moved in the anterograde direction characterized by front edge, peak, and trailing edge transport rates of (mm/d) 180.8 +/- 2.2 (+/- SEM), 176.6 +/- 2.3, and 153.7 +/- 3.0, respectively. Following its arrival at a distal ligature, a smaller pulse was observed to move in the retrograde direction characterized by front edge and peak transport rates of 158.0 +/- 7.3 and 110.3 +/- 3.5, respectively, indicating that retrograde transport proceeds at a rate of 0.88 +/- 0.04 that of anterograde. The retrograde pulse was observed to disperse at a rate greater than the anterograde. Reversal of radiolabel at the distal ligature began 1.49 +/- 0.15 h following arrival of the first radiolabel. Considerable variation was seen between preparations in the way radiolabel accumulated in the end (ligature) regions of the nerve. Although a retrograde pulse was seen in all preparations, in 7 of 10 preparations there was no evidence of this pulse accumulating within less than 2-3 mm of a proximal ligature; however, accumulation was observed within less than 5 mm in all preparations

  3. Brain-wide mapping of axonal connections: workflow for automated detection and spatial analysis of labeling in microscopic sections

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eszter Agnes ePapp


    Full Text Available Axonal tracing techniques are powerful tools for exploring the structural organization of neuronal connections. Tracers such as biotinylated dextran amine (BDA and Phaseolus vulgaris leucoagglutinin (Pha-L allow brain-wide mapping of connections through analysis of large series of histological section images. We present a workflow for efficient collection and analysis of tract-tracing datasets with a focus on newly developed modules for image processing and assignment of anatomical location to tracing data. New functionality includes automatic detection of neuronal labeling in large image series, alignment of images to a volumetric brain atlas, and analytical tools for measuring the position and extent of labeling. To evaluate the workflow, we used high-resolution microscopic images from axonal tracing experiments in which different parts of the rat primary somatosensory cortex had been injected with BDA or Pha-L. Parameters from a set of representative images were used to automate detection of labeling in image series covering the entire brain, resulting in binary maps of the distribution of labeling. For high to medium labeling densities, automatic detection was found to provide reliable results when compared to manual analysis, whereas weak labeling required manual curation for optimal detection. To identify brain regions corresponding to labeled areas, section images were aligned to the Waxholm Space (WHS atlas of the Sprague Dawley rat brain (v2 by custom-angle slicing of the MRI template to match individual sections. Based on the alignment, WHS coordinates were obtained for labeled elements and transformed to stereotaxic coordinates. The new workflow modules increase the efficiency and reliability of labeling detection in large series of images from histological sections, and enable anchoring to anatomical atlases for further spatial analysis and comparison with other data.

  4. The distribution of chandelier cell axon terminals that express the GABA plasma membrane transporter GAT-1 in the human neocortex. (United States)

    Inda, M C; Defelipe, J; Muñoz, A


    Chandelier cells represent a unique type of cortical GABAergic interneuron whose axon terminals (Ch-terminals) form synapses exclusively with the axon initial segments of pyramidal cells. In this study, we have used immunocytochemistry for the high-affinity plasma membrane transporter-1 (GAT-1) to analyze the distribution and density of Ch-terminals in various cytoarchitectonic and functional areas of the human neocortex. The lowest density of GAT-1-immuoreactive (-ir) Ch-terminals was detected in the primary and secondary visual (areas 17 and 18) and in the somatosensory areas (areas 3b and 1). In contrast, an intermediate density was observed in the motor area 4 and the associative frontolateral areas 45 and 46, whereas the associative frontolateral areas 9 and 10, frontal orbitary areas 11, 12, 13, 14, and 47, associative temporal areas 20, 21, 22, and 38, and cingulate areas 24 and 32 displayed the highest density of GAT-1-ir Ch-terminals. Despite these differences, the laminar distribution of GAT-1-ir Ch-terminals was similar in most cortical areas. Hence, the highest density of this transporter was observed in layer II, followed by layers III, V, VI, and IV. In most cortical areas, the density of GAT-1-ir Ch-terminals was positively correlated with the neuronal density, although a negative correlation was detected in layer III across all cortical areas. These results indicate that there are substantial differences in the distribution and density of GAT-1-ir Ch-terminals between areas and layers of the human neocortex. These differences might be related to the different functional attributes of the cortical regions examined.

  5. Developmental time windows for axon growth influence neuronal network topology. (United States)

    Lim, Sol; Kaiser, Marcus


    Early brain connectivity development consists of multiple stages: birth of neurons, their migration and the subsequent growth of axons and dendrites. Each stage occurs within a certain period of time depending on types of neurons and cortical layers. Forming synapses between neurons either by growing axons starting at similar times for all neurons (much-overlapped time windows) or at different time points (less-overlapped) may affect the topological and spatial properties of neuronal networks. Here, we explore the extreme cases of axon formation during early development, either starting at the same time for all neurons (parallel, i.e., maximally overlapped time windows) or occurring for each neuron separately one neuron after another (serial, i.e., no overlaps in time windows). For both cases, the number of potential and established synapses remained comparable. Topological and spatial properties, however, differed: Neurons that started axon growth early on in serial growth achieved higher out-degrees, higher local efficiency and longer axon lengths while neurons demonstrated more homogeneous connectivity patterns for parallel growth. Second, connection probability decreased more rapidly with distance between neurons for parallel growth than for serial growth. Third, bidirectional connections were more numerous for parallel growth. Finally, we tested our predictions with C. elegans data. Together, this indicates that time windows for axon growth influence the topological and spatial properties of neuronal networks opening up the possibility to a posteriori estimate developmental mechanisms based on network properties of a developed network.

  6. Parametric Probability Distribution Functions for Axon Diameters of Corpus Callosum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Farshid eSepehrband


    Full Text Available Axon diameter is an important neuroanatomical characteristic of the nervous system that alters in the course of neurological disorders such as multiple sclerosis. Axon diameters vary, even within a fiber bundle, and are not normally distributed. An accurate distribution function is therefore beneficial, either to describe axon diameters that are obtained from a direct measurement technique (e.g., microscopy, or to infer them indirectly (e.g., using diffusion-weighted MRI. The gamma distribution is a common choice for this purpose (particularly for the inferential approach because it resembles the distribution profile of measured axon diameters which has been consistently shown to be non-negative and right-skewed. In this study we compared a wide range of parametric probability distribution functions against empirical data obtained from electron microscopy images. We observed that the gamma distribution fails to accurately describe the main characteristics of the axon diameter distribution, such as location and scale of the mode and the profile of distribution tails. We also found that the generalized extreme value distribution consistently fitted the measured distribution better than other distribution functions. This suggests that there may be distinct subpopulations of axons in the corpus callosum, each with their own distribution profiles. In addition, we observed that several other distributions outperformed the gamma distribution, yet had the same number of unknown parameters; these were the inverse Gaussian, log normal, log logistic and Birnbaum-Saunders distributions.

  7. Axon-glia interaction and membrane traffic in myelin formation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robin eWhite


    Full Text Available In vertebrate nervous systems myelination of neuronal axons has evolved to increase conduction velocity of electrical impulses with minimal space and energy requirements. Myelin is formed by specialised glial cells which ensheath axons with a lipid-rich insulating membrane. Myelination is a multi-step process initiated by axon-glia recognition triggering glial polarisation followed by targeted myelin membrane expansion and compaction. Thereby, a myelin sheath of complex subdomain structure is established. Continuous communication between neurons and glial cells is essential for myelin maintenance and axonal integrity. A diverse group of diseases, from multiple sclerosis to schizophrenia, have been linked to malfunction of myelinating cells reflecting the physiological importance of the axon-glial unit. This review describes the mechanisms of axonal signal integration by oligodendrocytes emphasising the central role of the Src-family kinase Fyn during CNS myelination. Furthermore, we discuss myelin membrane trafficking with particular focus on endocytic recycling and the control of PLP (proteolipid protein transport by SNARE proteins. Finally, PLP mistrafficking is considered in the context of myelin diseases.

  8. Beta 2-adrenergic receptors are colocalized and coregulated with whisker barrels in rat somatosensory cortex

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vos, P.; Kaufmann, D.; Hand, P.J.; Wolfe, B.B.


    Autoradiography has been used to visualize independently the subtypes of beta-adrenergic receptors in rat somatosensory cortex. Beta 2-adrenergic receptors, but not beta 1-adrenergic receptors colocalize with whisker barrels in this tissue. Thus, each whisker sends a specific multisynaptic pathway to the somatosensory cortex that can be histochemically visualized and only one subtype of beta-adrenergic receptor is specifically associated with this cortical representation. Additionally, neonatal lesion of any or all of the whisker follicles results in loss of the corresponding barrel(s) as shown by histochemical markers. This loss is paralleled by a similar loss in the organization of beta 2-adrenergic receptors in the somatosensory cortex. Other results indicate that these beta 2-adrenergic receptors are not involved in moment-to-moment signal transmission in this pathway and, additionally, are not involved in a gross way in the development of whisker-barrel array

  9. Novel assessment of cortical response to somatosensory stimuli in children with hemiparetic cerebral palsy. (United States)

    Maitre, Nathalie L; Barnett, Zachary P; Key, Alexandra P F


    The brain's response to somatosensory stimuli is essential to experience-driven learning in children. It was hypothesized that advances in event-related potential technology could quantify the response to touch in somatosensory cortices and characterize the responses of hemiparetic children. In this prospective study of 8 children (5-8 years old) with hemiparetic cerebral palsy, both event-related potential responses to sham or air puff trials and standard functional assessments were used. Event-related potential technology consistently measured signals reflecting activity in the primary and secondary somatosensory cortices as well as complex cognitive processing of touch. Participants showed typical early responses but less efficient perceptual processes. Significant differences between affected and unaffected extremities correlated with sensorimotor testing, stereognosis, and 2-point discrimination (r > 0.800 and P = .001 for all). For the first time, a novel event-related potential paradigm shows that hemiparetic children have slower and less efficient tactile cortical perception in their affected extremities.

  10. COMMUNICATION Designing a somatosensory neural prosthesis: percepts evoked by different patterns of thalamic stimulation (United States)

    Heming, Ethan; Sanden, Andrew; Kiss, Zelma H. T.


    Although major advances have been made in the development of motor prostheses, fine motor control requires intuitive somatosensory feedback. Here we explored whether a thalamic site for a somatosensory neural prosthetic could provide natural somatic sensation to humans. Different patterns of electrical stimulation (obtained from thalamic spike trains) were applied in patients undergoing deep brain stimulation surgery. Changes in pattern produced different sensations, while preserving somatotopic representation. While most percepts were reported as 'unnatural', some stimulations produced more 'natural' sensations than others. However, the additional patterns did not elicit more 'natural' percepts than high-frequency (333 Hz) electrical stimulation. These features suggest that despite some limitations, the thalamus may be a feasible site for a somatosensory neural prosthesis and different stimulation patterns may be useful in its development.

  11. Bilateral somatosensory evoked potentials following intermittent theta-burst repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation. (United States)

    Premji, Azra; Ziluk, Angela; Nelson, Aimee J


    Intermittent theta-burst stimulation (iTBS) is a form of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation that may alter cortical excitability in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI). The present study investigated the effects of iTBS on subcortical and early cortical somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) recorded over left, iTBS stimulated SI and the right-hemisphere non-stimulated SI. SEPs were recorded before and at 5, 15, and 25 minutes following iTBS. Compared to pre-iTBS, the amplitude of cortical potential N20/P25 was significantly increased for 5 minutes from non-stimulated SI and for 15 to 25 minutes from stimulated SI. Subcortical potentials recorded bilaterally remained unaltered following iTBS. We conclude that iTBS increases the cortical excitability of SI bilaterally and does not alter thalamocortical afferent input to SI. ITBS may provide one avenue to induce cortical plasticity in the somatosensory cortex.

  12. Control of Somatosensory Cortical Processing by Thalamic Posterior Medial Nucleus: A New Role of Thalamus in Cortical Function.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Castejon

    Full Text Available Current knowledge of thalamocortical interaction comes mainly from studying lemniscal thalamic systems. Less is known about paralemniscal thalamic nuclei function. In the vibrissae system, the posterior medial nucleus (POm is the corresponding paralemniscal nucleus. POm neurons project to L1 and L5A of the primary somatosensory cortex (S1 in the rat brain. It is known that L1 modifies sensory-evoked responses through control of intracortical excitability suggesting that L1 exerts an influence on whisker responses. Therefore, thalamocortical pathways targeting L1 could modulate cortical firing. Here, using a combination of electrophysiology and pharmacology in vivo, we have sought to determine how POm influences cortical processing. In our experiments, single unit recordings performed in urethane-anesthetized rats showed that POm imposes precise control on the magnitude and duration of supra- and infragranular barrel cortex whisker responses. Our findings demonstrated that L1 inputs from POm imposed a time and intensity dependent regulation on cortical sensory processing. Moreover, we found that blocking L1 GABAergic inhibition or blocking P/Q-type Ca2+ channels in L1 prevents POm adjustment of whisker responses in the barrel cortex. Additionally, we found that POm was also controlling the sensory processing in S2 and this regulation was modulated by corticofugal activity from L5 in S1. Taken together, our data demonstrate the determinant role exerted by the POm in the adjustment of somatosensory cortical processing and in the regulation of cortical processing between S1 and S2. We propose that this adjustment could be a thalamocortical gain regulation mechanism also present in the processing of information between cortical areas.

  13. Modulation of Somatosensory Alpha Rhythm by Transcranial Alternating Current Stimulation at Mu-Frequency

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    Christopher Gundlach


    Full Text Available Introduction: Transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS is emerging as an interventional tool to modulate different functions of the brain, potentially by interacting with intrinsic ongoing neuronal oscillations. Functionally different intrinsic alpha oscillations are found throughout the cortex. Yet it remains unclear whether tACS is capable of specifically modulating the somatosensory mu-rhythm in amplitude.Objectives: We used tACS to modulate mu-alpha oscillations in amplitude. When compared to sham stimulation we expected a modulation of mu-alpha oscillations but not visual alpha oscillations by tACS.Methods: Individual mu-alpha frequencies were determined in 25 participants. Subsequently, blocks of tACS with individual mu-alpha frequency and sham stimulation were applied over primary somatosensory cortex (SI. Electroencephalogram (EEG was recorded before and after either stimulation or sham. Modulations of mu-alpha and, for control, visual alpha amplitudes were then compared between tACS and sham.Results: Somatosensory mu-alpha oscillations decreased in amplitude after tACS was applied at participants’ individual mu-alpha frequency. No changes in amplitude were observed for sham stimulation. Furthermore, visual alpha oscillations were not affected by tACS or sham, respectively.Conclusion: Our results demonstrate the capability of tACS to specifically modulate the targeted somatosensory mu-rhythm when the tACS frequency is tuned to the individual endogenous rhythm and applied over somatosensory areas. Our results are in contrast to previously reported amplitude increases of visual alpha oscillations induced by tACS applied over visual cortex. Our results may point to a specific interaction between our stimulation protocol and the functional architecture of the somatosensory system.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hikmat Hadoush


    Full Text Available Background: Following peripheral nerve lesion, the adult somatosensory system showedcortical reorganizational abilities.Previous studies identified the digits' somatotopy map changes and somatosensory cortical plasticity in response to the Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS that affected the dominant hand only. Objective: Answering the remained question is that what the extent of the cortical plasticity would be in left and right somatosensory cortices in response to CTS affecting the right and left hands simultaneously. Methods: Cortical representations activated by tactile stimulation of median nerve (index and ulnar nerve (little of both dominant and non-dominant hands were evaluated by Magnetoencephalography (MEG systemfor healthy participants and patient with bilateral moderate CTS. index – little fingers'somatotopy map and inter-digit cortical distance was then mapped and calculated for each participant on the real MRI data and the 3D brain surface image. Results: in healthy participants, index – little inter-digit somatosensory cortical distance of right hand (dominant was significantly larger than the index – little inter-digitsomatosensory cortical distance of left hand (11.2±2.1mm vs.7.0±2.9mm, P = 0.006. However, in patient with bilateral CTS, the index – little inter-digit somatosensory cortical distance of righthand (dominant was significantly smaller than the index – little inter-digit somatosensory cortical distance of left hand (5.8mm vs. 7.4mm. Conclusion: our data could be interpreted as the hand use – dependency served more median nerve – cortical territory from the ulnar nerve invasion in the right somatotopy map (left hand than the left somatotopy map of the right hand.

  15. The Influence of Eye Closure on Somatosensory Discrimination: A Trade-off Between Simple Perception and Discrimination. (United States)

    Götz, Theresa; Hanke, David; Huonker, Ralph; Weiss, Thomas; Klingner, Carsten; Brodoehl, Stefan; Baumbach, Philipp; Witte, Otto W


    We often close our eyes to improve perception. Recent results have shown a decrease of perception thresholds accompanied by an increase in somatosensory activity after eye closure. However, does somatosensory spatial discrimination also benefit from eye closure? We previously showed that spatial discrimination is accompanied by a reduction of somatosensory activity. Using magnetoencephalography, we analyzed the magnitude of primary somatosensory (somatosensory P50m) and primary auditory activity (auditory P50m) during a one-back discrimination task in 21 healthy volunteers. In complete darkness, participants were requested to pay attention to either the somatosensory or auditory stimulation and asked to open or close their eyes every 6.5 min. Somatosensory P50m was reduced during a task requiring the distinguishing of stimulus location changes at the distal phalanges of different fingers. The somatosensory P50m was further reduced and detection performance was higher during eyes open. A similar reduction was found for the auditory P50m during a task requiring the distinguishing of changing tones. The function of eye closure is more than controlling visual input. It might be advantageous for perception because it is an effective way to reduce interference from other modalities, but disadvantageous for spatial discrimination because it requires at least one top-down processing stage. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail:

  16. Multimodal and widespread somatosensory abnormalities in persistent shoulder pain in the first 6 months after stroke: an exploratory study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roosink, M.; van Dongen, R.T.; Buitenweg, J.R.; Renzenbrink, G.J.; Geurts, A.C.H.; IJzerman, M.J.


    Roosink M, Van Dongen RT, Buitenweg JR, Renzenbrink GJ, Geurts AC, IJzerman MJ. Multimodal and widespread somatosensory abnormalities in persistent shoulder pain in the first 6 months after stroke: an exploratory study. OBJECTIVE: To explore the role of multimodal and widespread somatosensory

  17. Intraoperative intrinsic optical imaging of human somatosensory cortex during neurosurgical operations. (United States)

    Sato, Katsushige; Nariai, Tadashi; Momose-Sato, Yoko; Kamino, Kohtaro


    Intrinsic optical imaging as developed by Grinvald et al. is a powerful technique for monitoring neural function in the in vivo central nervous system. The advent of this dye-free imaging has also enabled us to monitor human brain function during neurosurgical operations. We briefly describe our own experience in functional mapping of the human somatosensory cortex, carried out using intraoperative optical imaging. The maps obtained demonstrate new additional evidence of a hierarchy for sensory response patterns in the human primary somatosensory cortex.

  18. Quantitative Study of NPY-Expressing GABAergic Neurons and Axons in Rat Spinal Dorsal Horn*


    Polg?r, Erika; Sardella, Thomas CP; Watanabe, Masahiko; Todd, Andrew J


    Between 25?40% of neurons in laminae I?III are GABAergic, and some of these express neuropeptide Y (NPY). We previously reported that NPY-immunoreactive axons form numerous synapses on lamina III projection neurons that possess the neurokinin 1 receptor (NK1r). The aims of this study were to determine the proportion of neurons and GABAergic boutons in this region that contain NPY, and to look for evidence that they selectively innervate different neuronal populations. We found that 4?6% of ne...

  19. Modelling in vivo action potential propagation along a giant axon. (United States)

    George, Stuart; Foster, Jamie M; Richardson, Giles


    A partial differential equation model for the three-dimensional current flow in an excitable, unmyelinated axon is considered. Where the axon radius is significantly below a critical value R(crit) (that depends upon intra- and extra-cellular conductivity and ion channel conductance) the resistance of the intracellular space is significantly higher than that of the extracellular space, such that the potential outside the axon is uniformly small whilst the intracellular potential is approximated by the transmembrane potential. In turn, since the current flow is predominantly axial, it can be shown that the transmembrane potential is approximated by a solution to the one-dimensional cable equation. It is noted that the radius of the squid giant axon, investigated by (Hodgkin and Huxley 1952e), lies close to R(crit). This motivates us to apply the three-dimensional model to the squid giant axon and compare the results thus found to those obtained using the cable equation. In the context of the in vitro experiments conducted in (Hodgkin and Huxley 1952e) we find only a small difference between the wave profiles determined using these two different approaches and little difference between the speeds of action potential propagation predicted. This suggests that the cable equation approximation is accurate in this scenario. However when applied to the it in vivo setting, in which the conductivity of the surrounding tissue is considerably lower than that of the axoplasm, there are marked differences in both wave profile and speed of action potential propagation calculated using the two approaches. In particular, the cable equation significantly over predicts the increase in the velocity of propagation as axon radius increases. The consequences of these results are discussed in terms of the evolutionary costs associated with increasing the speed of action potential propagation by increasing axon radius.

  20. Cardioacceleratory Neurons of the Isopod Crustacean, Ligia exotica : Visualization of Peripheral Projection onto the Heart Muscle


    Akira, Sakurai; Hiroshi, Yamagishi; Institute of Biological Sciences, University of Tsukuba; Institute of Biological Sciences, University of Tsukuba


    Innervation of the heart muscle by the cardioacceleratory neurons was morphologically and electrophysiologically examined in the isopod crustacean, Ligia exotica. Intracellular injection of neurobiotin into the first and second cardioacceleratory neurons(CA1 and CA2)revealed their peripheral axonal projections. Inside the heart, the CA1 and CA2 axons ran along the trunk of the cardiac ganglion. Finely arborized branches with many varicosities arose from the axon and projected over the heart m...

  1. Activity in the primary somatosensory cortex induced by reflexological stimulation is unaffected by pseudo-information: a functional magnetic resonance imaging study. (United States)

    Miura, Naoki; Akitsuki, Yuko; Sekiguchi, Atsushi; Kawashima, Ryuta


    Reflexology is an alternative medical practice that produces beneficial effects by applying pressure to specific reflex areas. Our previous study suggested that reflexological stimulation induced cortical activation in somatosensory cortex corresponding to the stimulated reflex area; however, we could not rule out the possibility of a placebo effect resulting from instructions given during the experimental task. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to investigate how reflexological stimulation of the reflex area is processed in the primary somatosensory cortex when correct and pseudo-information about the reflex area is provided. Furthermore, the laterality of activation to the reflexological stimulation was investigated. Thirty-two healthy Japanese volunteers participated. The experiment followed a double-blind design. Half of the subjects received correct information, that the base of the second toe was the eye reflex area, and pseudo-information, that the base of the third toe was the shoulder reflex area. The other half of the subjects received the opposite information. fMRI time series data were acquired during reflexological stimulation to both feet. The experimenter stimulated each reflex area in accordance with an auditory cue. The fMRI data were analyzed using a conventional two-stage approach. The hemodynamic responses produced by the stimulation of each reflex area were assessed using a general linear model on an intra-subject basis, and a two-way repeated-measures analysis of variance was performed on an intersubject basis to determine the effect of reflex area laterality and information accuracy. Our results indicated that stimulation of the eye reflex area in either foot induced activity in the left middle postcentral gyrus, the area to which tactile sensation to the face projects, as well as in the postcentral gyrus contralateral foot representation area. This activity was not affected by pseudo information. The results also indicate

  2. Activity in the primary somatosensory cortex induced by reflexological stimulation is unaffected by pseudo-information: a functional magnetic resonance imaging study (United States)


    Background Reflexology is an alternative medical practice that produces beneficial effects by applying pressure to specific reflex areas. Our previous study suggested that reflexological stimulation induced cortical activation in somatosensory cortex corresponding to the stimulated reflex area; however, we could not rule out the possibility of a placebo effect resulting from instructions given during the experimental task. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to investigate how reflexological stimulation of the reflex area is processed in the primary somatosensory cortex when correct and pseudo-information about the reflex area is provided. Furthermore, the laterality of activation to the reflexological stimulation was investigated. Methods Thirty-two healthy Japanese volunteers participated. The experiment followed a double-blind design. Half of the subjects received correct information, that the base of the second toe was the eye reflex area, and pseudo-information, that the base of the third toe was the shoulder reflex area. The other half of the subjects received the opposite information. fMRI time series data were acquired during reflexological stimulation to both feet. The experimenter stimulated each reflex area in accordance with an auditory cue. The fMRI data were analyzed using a conventional two-stage approach. The hemodynamic responses produced by the stimulation of each reflex area were assessed using a general linear model on an intra-subject basis, and a two-way repeated-measures analysis of variance was performed on an intersubject basis to determine the effect of reflex area laterality and information accuracy. Results Our results indicated that stimulation of the eye reflex area in either foot induced activity in the left middle postcentral gyrus, the area to which tactile sensation to the face projects, as well as in the postcentral gyrus contralateral foot representation area. This activity was not affected by pseudo information

  3. Overexpression of Pax6 results in microphthalmia, retinal dysplasia and defective retinal ganglion cell axon guidance

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    Jeffery Glen


    Full Text Available Abstract Background The transcription factor Pax6 is expressed by many cell types in the developing eye. Eyes do not form in homozygous loss-of-function mouse mutants (Pax6Sey/Sey and are abnormally small in Pax6Sey/+ mutants. Eyes are also abnormally small in PAX77 mice expressing multiple copies of human PAX6 in addition to endogenous Pax6; protein sequences are identical in the two species. The developmental events that lead to microphthalmia in PAX77 mice are not well-characterised, so it is not clear whether over- and under-expression of Pax6/PAX6 cause microphthalmia through similar mechanisms. Here, we examined the consequences of over-expression for the eye and its axonal connections. Results Eyes form in PAX77+/+ embryos but subsequently degenerate. At E12.5, we found no abnormalities in ocular morphology, retinal cell cycle parameters and the incidence of retinal cell death. From E14.5 on, we observed malformations of the optic disc. From E16.5 into postnatal life there is progressively more severe retinal dysplasia and microphthalmia. Analyses of patterns of gene expression indicated that PAX77+/+ retinae produce a normal range of cell types, including retinal ganglion cells (RGCs. At E14.5 and E16.5, quantitative RT-PCR with probes for a range of molecules associated with retinal development showed only one significant change: a slight reduction in levels of mRNA encoding the secreted morphogen Shh at E16.5. At E16.5, tract-tracing with carbocyanine dyes in PAX77+/+ embryos revealed errors in intraretinal navigation by RGC axons, a decrease in the number of RGC axons reaching the thalamus and an increase in the proportion of ipsilateral projections among those RGC axons that do reach the thalamus. A survey of embryos with different Pax6/PAX6 gene dosage (Pax6Sey/+, Pax6+/+, PAX77+ and PAX77+/+ showed that (1 the total number of RGC axons projected by the retina and (2 the proportions that are sorted into the ipsilateral and

  4. Cortical Interneuron Subtypes Vary in Their Axonal Action Potential Properties. (United States)

    Casale, Amanda E; Foust, Amanda J; Bal, Thierry; McCormick, David A


    The role of interneurons in cortical microcircuits is strongly influenced by their passive and active electrical properties. Although different types of interneurons exhibit unique electrophysiological properties recorded at the soma, it is not yet clear whether these differences are also manifested in other neuronal compartments. To address this question, we have used voltage-sensitive dye to image the propagation of action potentials into the fine collaterals of axons and dendrites in two of the largest cortical interneuron subtypes in the mouse: fast-spiking interneurons, which are typically basket or chandelier neurons; and somatostatin containing interneurons, which are typically regular spiking Martinotti cells. We found that fast-spiking and somatostatin-expressing interneurons differed in their electrophysiological characteristics along their entire dendrosomatoaxonal extent. The action potentials generated in the somata and axons, including axon collaterals, of somatostatin-expressing interneurons are significantly broader than those generated in the same compartments of fast-spiking inhibitory interneurons. In addition, action potentials back-propagated into the dendrites of somatostatin-expressing interneurons much more readily than fast-spiking interneurons. Pharmacological investigations suggested that axonal action potential repolarization in both cell types depends critically upon Kv1 channels, whereas the axonal and somatic action potentials of somatostatin-expressing interneurons also depend on BK Ca(2+)-activated K(+) channels. These results indicate that the two broad classes of interneurons studied here have expressly different subcellular physiological properties, allowing them to perform unique computational roles in cortical circuit operations. Neurons in the cerebral cortex are of two major types: excitatory and inhibitory. The proper balance of excitation and inhibition in the brain is critical for its operation. Neurons contain three main

  5. Mechanistic logic underlying the axonal transport of cytosolic proteins (United States)

    Scott, David A.; Das, Utpal; Tang, Yong; Roy, Subhojit


    Proteins vital to presynaptic function are synthesized in the neuronal perikarya and delivered into synapses via two modes of axonal transport. While membrane-anchoring proteins are conveyed in fast axonal transport via motor-driven vesicles, cytosolic proteins travel in slow axonal transport; via mechanisms that are poorly understood. We found that in cultured axons, populations of cytosolic proteins tagged to photoactivable-GFP (PA-GFP) move with a slow motor-dependent anterograde bias; distinct from vesicular-trafficking or diffusion of untagged PA-GFP. The overall bias is likely generated by an intricate particle-kinetics involving transient assembly and short-range vectorial spurts. In-vivo biochemical studies reveal that cytosolic proteins are organized into higher-order structures within axon-enriched fractions that are largely segregated from vesicles. Data-driven biophysical modeling best predicts a scenario where soluble molecules dynamically assemble into mobile supra-molecular structures. We propose a model where cytosolic proteins are transported by dynamically assembling into multi-protein complexes that are directly/indirectly conveyed by motors. PMID:21555071

  6. Protein Prenylation Constitutes an Endogenous Brake on Axonal Growth

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    Hai Li


    Full Text Available Suboptimal axonal regeneration contributes to the consequences of nervous system trauma and neurodegenerative disease, but the intrinsic mechanisms that regulate axon growth remain unclear. We screened 50,400 small molecules for their ability to promote axon outgrowth on inhibitory substrata. The most potent hits were the statins, which stimulated growth of all mouse- and human-patient-derived neurons tested, both in vitro and in vivo, as did combined inhibition of the protein prenylation enzymes farnesyltransferase (PFT and geranylgeranyl transferase I (PGGT-1. Compensatory sprouting of motor axons may delay clinical onset of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS. Accordingly, elevated levels of PGGT1B, which would be predicted to reduce sprouting, were found in motor neurons of early- versus late-onset ALS patients postmortem. The mevalonate-prenylation pathway therefore constitutes an endogenous brake on axonal growth, and its inhibition provides a potential therapeutic approach to accelerate neuronal regeneration in humans.

  7. Mechanisms of Distal Axonal Degeneration in Peripheral Neuropathies (United States)

    Cashman, Christopher R.; Höke, Ahmet


    Peripheral neuropathy is a common complication of a variety of diseases and treatments, including diabetes, cancer chemotherapy, and infectious causes (HIV, hepatitis C, and Campylobacter jejuni). Despite the fundamental difference between these insults, peripheral neuropathy develops as a combination of just six primary mechanisms: altered metabolism, covalent modification, altered organelle function and reactive oxygen species formation, altered intracellular and inflammatory signaling, slowed axonal transport, and altered ion channel dynamics and expression. All of these pathways converge to lead to axon dysfunction and symptoms of neuropathy. The detailed mechanisms of axon degeneration itself have begun to be elucidated with studies of animal models with altered degeneration kinetics, including the slowed Wallerian degeneration (Wlds) and Sarmknockout animal models. These studies have shown axonal degeneration to occur througha programmed pathway of injury signaling and cytoskeletal degradation. Insights into the common disease insults that converge on the axonal degeneration pathway promise to facilitate the development of therapeutics that may be effective against other mechanisms of neurodegeneration. PMID:25617478

  8. Calpain Inhibition Reduces Axolemmal Leakage in Traumatic Axonal Injury

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    János Sándor


    Full Text Available Calcium-induced, calpain-mediated proteolysis (CMSP has recently been implicated to the pathogenesis of diffuse (traumatic axonal injury (TAI. Some studies suggested that subaxolemmal CMSP may contribute to axolemmal permeability (AP alterations observed in TAI. Seeking direct evidence for this premise we investigated whether subaxolemmal CMSP may contribute to axolemmal permeability alterations (APA and pre-injury calpain-inhibition could reduce AP in a rat model of TAI. Horseradish peroxidase (HRP, a tracer that accumulates in axons with APA was administered one hour prior to injury into the lateral ventricle; 30 min preinjury a single tail vein bolus injection of 30 mg/kg MDL-28170 (a calpain inhibitor or its vehicle was applied in Wistar rats exposed to impact acceleration brain injury. Histological detection of traumatically injured axonal segments accumulating HRP and statistical analysis revealed that pre-injury administration of the calpain inhibitor MDL-28170 significantly reduced the average length of HRP-labeled axonal segments. The axono-protective effect of pre-injury calpain inhibition recently demonstrated with classical immunohistochemical markers of TAI was further corroborated in this experiment; significant reduction of the length of labeled axons in the drug-treated rats implicate CMSP in the progression of altered AP in TAI.

  9. Characterization of patients with head trauma and traumatic axonal injury

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mosquera Betancourt, Dra.C. Gretel; Van Duc, Dr. Hanh; Casares Delgado, Dr. Jorge Alejandro; Hernández González, Dr. Erick Héctor


    Background: traumatic axonal injury is characterized by multifocal lesions, consequences of primary, secondary and tertiary damage which is able to cause varying degrees of disability. Objective: to characterize patients with traumatic axonal injury. Methods: a cross-sectional analytical study was conducted from January 2014 to December 2015. The target population was composed of 35 patients over age 18 whose diagnosis was traumatic axonal injury type I and IV of the Marshall computed tomographic (CT) classification. With the data collected from medical records revisions and direct observation, a database was created in SPSS for its processing through univariate and multivariate techniques. Results: male patients between 18 and 30 years old without bad habits prevailed. Most of the patients survived and death was associated with the presence of severe traumatic axonal injury, Marshall computed tomographic (CT) classification degree III, complications and presence of trauma in thorax, abdomen and cervical spine. Conclusions: diagnosis of traumatic axonal injury is based on the clinical radiological correlation based on images from tomography and it is confirmed by Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Histological study shows injuries that are not demonstrated in the most advanced radiological studies. Its prevention is the most fundamental base in medical assistance, followed by neurocritical attention oriented by neuromonitoring. (author)

  10. Highly effective photonic cue for repulsive axonal guidance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bryan J Black

    Full Text Available In vivo nerve repair requires not only the ability to regenerate damaged axons, but most importantly, the ability to guide developing or regenerating axons along paths that will result in functional connections. Furthermore, basic studies in neuroscience and neuro-electronic interface design require the ability to construct in vitro neural circuitry. Both these applications require the development of a noninvasive, highly effective tool for axonal growth-cone guidance. To date, a myriad of technologies have been introduced based on chemical, electrical, mechanical, and hybrid approaches (such as electro-chemical, optofluidic flow and photo-chemical methods. These methods are either lacking in desired spatial and temporal selectivity or require the introduction of invasive external factors. Within the last fifteen years however, several attractive guidance cues have been developed using purely light based cues to achieve axonal guidance. Here, we report a novel, purely optical repulsive guidance technique that uses low power, near infrared light, and demonstrates the guidance of primary goldfish retinal ganglion cell axons through turns of up to 120 degrees and over distances of ∼90 µm.

  11. Functional complexity of the axonal growth cone: a proteomic analysis.

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    Adriana Estrada-Bernal

    Full Text Available The growth cone, the tip of the emerging neurite, plays a crucial role in establishing the wiring of the developing nervous system. We performed an extensive proteomic analysis of axonal growth cones isolated from the brains of fetal Sprague-Dawley rats. Approximately 2000 proteins were identified at ≥ 99% confidence level. Using informatics, including functional annotation cluster and KEGG pathway analysis, we found great diversity of proteins involved in axonal pathfinding, cytoskeletal remodeling, vesicular traffic and carbohydrate metabolism, as expected. We also found a large and complex array of proteins involved in translation, protein folding, posttranslational processing, and proteasome/ubiquitination-dependent degradation. Immunofluorescence studies performed on hippocampal neurons in culture confirmed the presence in the axonal growth cone of proteins representative of these processes. These analyses also provide evidence for rough endoplasmic reticulum and reveal a reticular structure equipped with Golgi-like functions in the axonal growth cone. Furthermore, Western blot revealed the growth cone enrichment, relative to fetal brain homogenate, of some of the proteins involved in protein synthesis, folding and catabolism. Our study provides a resource for further research and amplifies the relatively recently developed concept that the axonal growth cone is equipped with proteins capable of performing a highly diverse range of functions.

  12. Electrical somatosensory stimulation followed by motor training of the paretic upper limb in acute stroke

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ghaziani, Emma; Couppé, Christian; Henkel, Cecilie


    functioning is most pronounced during the first 4 weeks post stroke, there are few studies investigating the effect of rehabilitation during this critical time window. The purpose of this trial is to determine the effect of electrical somatosensory stimulation (ESS) initiated in the acute stroke phase...

  13. The Role of Attention in Somatosensory Processing: A Multi-Trait, Multi-Method Analysis (United States)

    Wodka, Ericka L.; Puts, Nicolaas A. J.; Mahone, E. Mark; Edden, Richard A. E.; Tommerdahl, Mark; Mostofsky, Stewart H.


    Sensory processing abnormalities in autism have largely been described by parent report. This study used a multi-method (parent-report and measurement), multi-trait (tactile sensitivity and attention) design to evaluate somatosensory processing in ASD. Results showed multiple significant within-method (e.g., parent report of different…

  14. Predictability of painful stimulation modulates the somatosensory-evoked potential in the rat

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schaap, M.W.H.; van Oostrom, H.; Doornenbal, A.; Baars, A.M.; Arndt, S.S.; Hellebrekers, L.J.


    Abstract Somatosensory-evoked potentials (SEPs) are used in humans and animals to increase knowledge about nociception and pain. Since the SEP in humans increases when noxious stimuli are administered unpredictably, predictability potentially influences the SEP in animals as well. To assess the

  15. Volumetric localization of somatosensory cortex in children using synthetic aperture magnetometry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xiang, Jing; Holowka, Stephanie; Chuang, Sylvester; Sharma, Rohit; Hunjan, Amrita; Otsubo, Hiroshi


    Magnetic signal from the human brain can be measured noninvasively by using magnetoencephalography (MEG). This study was designed to localize and reconstruct the neuromagnetic activity in the somatosensory cortex in children Twenty children were studied using a 151-channel MEG system with electrical stimulation applied to median nerves. Data were analyzed using synthetic aperture magnetometry (SAM). A clear deflection (M1) was clearly identified in 18 children (90%, 18/20). Two frequency bands, 30-60 Hz and 60-120 Hz, were found to be related to somatosensory cortex. Magnetic activity was localized in the posterior bank of the central sulcus in 16 children. The extent of the reconstructed neuromagnetic activity of the left hemisphere was significantly larger than that of the right hemisphere (P<0.01). Somatosensory cortex was accurately localized by using SAM. The extent of the reconstructed neuromagnetic activity suggested that the left hemisphere was the dominant side in the somatosensory system in children. We postulate that the volumetric characteristics of the reconstructed neuromagnetic activity are able to indicate the functionality of the brain. (orig.)

  16. Electrophysiological Evidence for a Sensory Recruitment Model of Somatosensory Working Memory. (United States)

    Katus, Tobias; Grubert, Anna; Eimer, Martin


    Sensory recruitment models of working memory assume that information storage is mediated by the same cortical areas that are responsible for the perceptual processing of sensory signals. To test this assumption, we measured somatosensory event-related brain potentials (ERPs) during a tactile delayed match-to-sample task. Participants memorized a tactile sample set at one task-relevant hand to compare it with a subsequent test set on the same hand. During the retention period, a sustained negativity (tactile contralateral delay activity, tCDA) was elicited over primary somatosensory cortex contralateral to the relevant hand. The amplitude of this component increased with memory load and was sensitive to individual limitations in memory capacity, suggesting that the tCDA reflects the maintenance of tactile information in somatosensory working memory. The tCDA was preceded by a transient negativity (N2cc component) with a similar contralateral scalp distribution, which is likely to reflect selection of task-relevant tactile stimuli at the encoding stage. The temporal sequence of N2cc and tCDA components mirrors previous observations from ERP studies of working memory in vision. The finding that the sustained somatosensory delay period activity varies as a function of memory load supports a sensory recruitment model for spatial working memory in touch. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail:

  17. Effect of extradural morphine on somatosensory evoked potentials to dermatomal stimulation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, C; Selmar, P; Hansen, O B


    The effect of the extradural (L2-3) administration of morphine 6 mg on early (less than 0.5 s) somatosensory evoked cortical potentials (SEP) to electrical stimulation of the L1- and S1-dermatomes was examined in eight patients. Extradural morphine did not influence SEP amplitude. SEP latency did...

  18. Reduced somatosensory impairment by piezosurgery during orthognathic surgery of the mandible. (United States)

    Brockmeyer, Phillipp; Hahn, Wolfram; Fenge, Stefan; Moser, Norman; Schliephake, Henning; Gruber, Rudolf Matthias


    This clinical trial aimed to test the hypothesis that piezosurgery causes reduced nerval irritations and, thus, reduced somatosensory impairment when used in orthognathic surgery of the mandible. To this end, 37 consecutive patients with Angle Class II and III malocclusion were treated using bilateral sagittal split osteotomies (BSSO) of the mandible. In a split mouth design, randomized one side of the mandible was operated using a conventional saw, while a piezosurgery device was used on the contralateral side. In order to test the individual qualities of somatosensory function, quantitative sensory testings (QSTs) were performed 1 month, 6 months and 1 year after surgery. A comparison of the data using a two-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) revealed a significant reduction in postoperative impairment in warm detection threshold (WDT) (P = 0.046), a decreased dynamic mechanical allodynia (ALL) (P = 0.002) and a decreased vibration detection threshold (VDT) (P = 0.030) on the piezosurgery side of the mandible as opposed to the conventionally operated control side. In the remaining QSTs, minor deviations from the preoperative baseline conditions and a more rapid regression could be observed. Piezosurgery caused reduced somatosensory impairment and a faster recovery of somatosensory functions in the present investigation.

  19. Effect of surgery on sensory threshold and somatosensory evoked potentials after skin stimulation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, C; Hansen, O B; Kehlet, H


    We have studied the effect of surgical injury on cutaneous sensitivity and somatosensory evoked potentials (SSEP) to dermatomal electrical stimulation in 10 patients undergoing hysterectomy. Forty-eight hours after surgery, sensory threshold increased from 2.2 (SEM 0.3) mA to 4.4 (1.1) mA (P less...

  20. Somatosensory impairment and its association with balance limitation in people with multiple sclerosis. (United States)

    Jamali, Akram; Sadeghi-Demneh, Ebrahim; Fereshtenajad, Niloufar; Hillier, Susan


    Somatosensory impairments are common in multiple sclerosis. However, little data are available to characterize the nature and frequency of these problems in people with multiple sclerosis. To investigate the frequency of somatosensory impairments and identify any association with balance limitations in people with multiple sclerosis. The design was a prospective cross-sectional study, involving 82 people with multiple sclerosis and 30 healthy controls. Tactile and proprioceptive sensory acuity were measured using the Rivermead Assessment of Somatosensory Performance. Vibration duration was assessed using a tuning fork. Duration for the Timed Up and Go Test and reaching distance of the Functional Reach Test were measured to assess balance limitations. The normative range of sensory modalities was defined using cut-off points in the healthy participants. The multivariate linear regression was used to identify the significant predictors of balance in people with multiple sclerosis. Proprioceptive impairments (66.7%) were more common than tactile (60.8%) and vibration impairments (44.9%). Somatosensory impairments were more frequent in the lower limb (78.2%) than the upper limb (64.1%). All sensory modalities were significantly associated with the Timed Up and Go and Functional Reach tests (plimitation. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Alexithymia and Somatosensory Amplification Link Perceived Psychosocial Stress and Somatic Symptoms in Outpatients with Psychosomatic Illness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mutsuhiro Nakao


    Full Text Available Background: Psychosomatic patients often complain of a variety of somatic symptoms. We sought to clarify the role of clinical predictors of complaints of somatic symptoms. Methods: We enrolled 604 patients visiting a psychosomatic outpatient clinic. The outcome was the total number of somatic symptoms, and the candidate clinical predictors were perceived psychosocial stress, alexithymia, somatosensory amplification, adaptation, anxiety, and depression. All participants completed questionnaires assessing the outcome and the predictors. Results: The average number of reported somatic symptoms was 4.8; the most frequent was fatigue (75.3%, followed by insomnia (56.1%, low-back pain (49.5%, headache (44.7%, and palpitations (43.1%. Multiple regression analysis showed that the total number of somatic symptoms was significantly associated with the degree of perceived psychosocial stress, alexithymia, somatosensory amplification, and depression. Also, structural equation models indicated links between excessive adaptation (via perceived psychosocial stress, alexithymia, and somatosensory amplification and the total number of somatic symptoms. Conclusion: The results suggested that the association between psychosocial stress and reported somatic symptoms is mediated by alexithymia and somatosensory amplification in psychosomatic patients.

  2. Localization of mRNA in vertebrate axonal compartments by in situ hybridization. (United States)

    Sotelo-Silveira, José Roberto; Calliari, Aldo; Kun, Alejandra; Elizondo, Victoria; Canclini, Lucía; Sotelo, José Roberto


    The conclusive demonstration of RNA in vertebrate axons by in situ hybridization (ISH) has been elusive. We review the most important reasons for difficulties, including low concentration of axonal RNAs, localization in specific cortical domains, and the need to isolate axons. We demonstrate the importance of axon micro-dissection to obtain a whole mount perspective of mRNA distribution in the axonal territory. We describe a protocol to perform fluorescent ISH in isolated axons and guidelines for the preservation of structural and molecular integrity of cortical RNA-containing domains (e.g., Periaxoplasmic Ribosomal Plaques, or PARPs) in isolated axoplasm.

  3. Motor cortex and spinal cord neuromodulation promote corticospinal tract axonal outgrowth and motor recovery after cervical contusion spinal cord injury. (United States)

    Zareen, N; Shinozaki, M; Ryan, D; Alexander, H; Amer, A; Truong, D Q; Khadka, N; Sarkar, A; Naeem, S; Bikson, M; Martin, J H


    Cervical injuries are the most common form of SCI. In this study, we used a neuromodulatory approach to promote skilled movement recovery and repair of the corticospinal tract (CST) after a moderately severe C4 midline contusion in adult rats. We used bilateral epidural intermittent theta burst (iTBS) electrical stimulation of motor cortex to promote CST axonal sprouting and cathodal trans-spinal direct current stimulation (tsDCS) to enhance spinal cord activation to motor cortex stimulation after injury. We used Finite Element Method (FEM) modeling to direct tsDCS to the cervical enlargement. Combined iTBS-tsDCS was delivered for 30min daily for 10days. We compared the effect of stimulation on performance in the horizontal ladder and the Irvine Beattie and Bresnahan forepaw manipulation tasks and CST axonal sprouting in injury-only and injury+stimulation animals. The contusion eliminated the dorsal CST in all animals. tsDCS significantly enhanced motor cortex evoked responses after C4 injury. Using this combined spinal-M1 neuromodulatory approach, we found significant recovery of skilled locomotion and forepaw manipulation skills compared with injury-only controls. The spared CST axons caudal to the lesion in both animal groups derived mostly from lateral CST axons that populated the contralateral intermediate zone. Stimulation enhanced injury-dependent CST axonal outgrowth below and above the level of the injury. This dual neuromodulatory approach produced partial recovery of skilled motor behaviors that normally require integration of posture, upper limb sensory information, and intent for performance. We propose that the motor systems use these new CST projections to control movements better after injury. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. The Ste20 kinase misshapen regulates both photoreceptor axon targeting and dorsal closure, acting downstream of distinct signals. (United States)

    Su, Y C; Maurel-Zaffran, C; Treisman, J E; Skolnik, E Y


    We have previously shown that the Ste20 kinase encoded by misshapen (msn) functions upstream of the c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) mitogen-activated protein kinase module in Drosophila. msn is required to activate the Drosophila JNK, Basket (Bsk), to promote dorsal closure of the embryo. A mammalian homolog of Msn, Nck interacting kinase, interacts with the SH3 domains of the SH2-SH3 adapter protein Nck. We now show that Msn likewise interacts with Dreadlocks (Dock), the Drosophila homolog of Nck. dock is required for the correct targeting of photoreceptor axons. We have performed a structure-function analysis of Msn in vivo in Drosophila in order to elucidate the mechanism whereby Msn regulates JNK and to determine whether msn, like dock, is required for the correct targeting of photoreceptor axons. We show that Msn requires both a functional kinase and a C-terminal regulatory domain to activate JNK in vivo in Drosophila. A mutation in a PXXP motif on Msn that prevents it from binding to the SH3 domains of Dock does not affect its ability to rescue the dorsal closure defect in msn embryos, suggesting that Dock is not an upstream regulator of msn in dorsal closure. Larvae with only this mutated form of Msn show a marked disruption in photoreceptor axon targeting, implicating an SH3 domain protein in this process; however, an activated form of Msn is not sufficient to rescue the dock mutant phenotype. Mosaic analysis reveals that msn expression is required in photoreceptors in order for their axons to project correctly. The data presented here genetically link msn to two distinct biological events, dorsal closure and photoreceptor axon pathfinding, and thus provide the first evidence that Ste20 kinases of the germinal center kinase family play a role in axonal pathfinding. The ability of Msn to interact with distinct classes of adapter molecules in dorsal closure and photoreceptor axon pathfinding may provide the flexibility that allows it to link to distinct

  5. Perilesional edema in radiation necrosis reflects axonal degeneration

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Perez-Torres, Carlos J; Yuan, Liya; Schmidt, Robert E; Rich, Keith M; Ackerman, Joseph JH; Garbow, Joel R


    Recently, we characterized a Gamma Knife® radiation necrosis mouse model with various magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) protocols to identify biomarkers useful in differentiation from tumors. Though the irradiation was focal to one hemisphere, a contralateral injury was observed that appeared to be localized in the white matter only. Interestingly, this injury was identifiable in T2-weighted images, apparent diffusion coefficient (ADC), and magnetization transfer ratio (MTR) maps, but not on post-contrast T1-weighted images. This observation of edema independent of vascular changes is akin to the perilesional edema seen in clinical radiation necrosis. The pathology underlying the observed white-matter MRI changes was explored by performing immunohistochemistry for healthy axons and myelin. The presence of both healthy axons and myelin was reduced in the contralateral white-matter lesion. Based on our immunohistochemical findings, the contralateral white-matter injury is most likely due to axonal degeneration

  6. The nano-architecture of the axonal cytoskeleton. (United States)

    Leterrier, Christophe; Dubey, Pankaj; Roy, Subhojit


    The corporeal beauty of the neuronal cytoskeleton has captured the imagination of generations of scientists. One of the easiest cellular structures to visualize by light microscopy, its existence has been known for well over 100 years, yet we have only recently begun to fully appreciate its intricacy and diversity. Recent studies combining new probes with super-resolution microscopy and live imaging have revealed surprising details about the axonal cytoskeleton and, in particular, have discovered previously unknown actin-based structures. Along with traditional electron microscopy, these newer techniques offer a nanoscale view of the axonal cytoskeleton, which is important for our understanding of neuronal form and function, and lay the foundation for future studies. In this Review, we summarize existing concepts in the field and highlight contemporary discoveries that have fundamentally altered our perception of the axonal cytoskeleton.

  7. Chondroitin-4-sulfation negatively regulates axonal guidance and growth (United States)

    Wang, Hang; Katagiri, Yasuhiro; McCann, Thomas E.; Unsworth, Edward; Goldsmith, Paul; Yu, Zu-Xi; Tan, Fei; Santiago, Lizzie; Mills, Edward M.; Wang, Yu; Symes, Aviva J.; Geller, Herbert M.


    Summary Glycosaminoglycan (GAG) side chains endow extracellular matrix proteoglycans with diversity and complexity based upon the length, composition, and charge distribution of the polysaccharide chain. Using cultured primary neurons, we show that specific sulfation in the GAG chains of chondroitin sulfate (CS) mediates neuronal guidance cues and axonal growth inhibition. Chondroitin-4-sulfate (CS-A), but not chondroitin-6-sulfate (CS-C), exhibits a strong negative guidance cue to mouse cerebellar granule neurons. Enzymatic and gene-based manipulations of 4-sulfation in the GAG side chains alter their ability to direct growing axons. Furthermore, 4-sulfated CS GAG chains are rapidly and significantly increased in regions that do not support axonal regeneration proximal to spinal cord lesions in mice. Thus, our findings provide the evidence showing that specific sulfation along the carbohydrate backbone carries instructions to regulate neuronal function. PMID:18768934

  8. Growing axons analysis by using Granulometric Size Distribution

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gonzalez, Mariela A; Ballarin, Virginia L; Rapacioli, Melina; CelIn, A R; Sanchez, V; Flores, V


    Neurite growth (neuritogenesis) in vitro is a common methodology in the field of developmental neurobiology. Morphological analyses of growing neurites are usually difficult because their thinness and low contrast usually prevent to observe clearly their shape, number, length and spatial orientation. This paper presents the use of the granulometric size distribution in order to automatically obtain information about the shape, size and spatial orientation of growing axons in tissue cultures. The results here presented show that the granulometric size distribution results in a very useful morphological tool since it allows the automatic detection of growing axons and the precise characterization of a relevant parameter indicative of the axonal growth spatial orientation such as the quantification of the angle of deviation of the growing direction. The developed algorithms automatically quantify this orientation by facilitating the analysis of these images, which is important given the large number of images that need to be processed for this type of study.

  9. The axon-protective WLD(S) protein partially rescues mitochondrial respiration and glycolysis after axonal injury. (United States)

    Godzik, Katharina; Coleman, Michael P


    The axon-protective Wallerian degeneration slow (WLD(S)) protein can ameliorate the decline in axonal ATP levels after neurite transection. Here, we tested the hypothesis that this effect is associated with maintenance of mitochondrial respiration and/or glycolysis. We used isolated neurites of superior cervical ganglion (SCG) cultures in the Seahorse XF-24 Metabolic Flux Analyser to determine mitochondrial respiration and glycolysis under different conditions. We observed that both mitochondrial respiration and glycolysis declined significantly during the latent phase of Wallerian degeneration. WLD(S) partially reduced the decline both in glycolysis and in mitochondrial respiration. In addition, we found that depleting NAD levels in uncut cultures led to changes in mitochondrial respiration and glycolysis similar to those rescued by WLD(S) after cut, suggesting that the maintenance of NAD levels in Wld(S) neurites after axonal injury at least partially underlies the maintenance of ATP levels. However, by using another axon-protective mutation (Sarm1(-/-)), we could demonstrate that rescue of basal ECAR (and hence probably glycolysis) rather than basal OCR (mitochondrial respiration) may be part of the protective phenotype to delay Wallerian degeneration. These findings open new routes to study glycolysis and the connection between NAD and ATP levels in axon degeneration, which may help to eventually develop therapeutic strategies to treat neurodegenerative diseases.

  10. Magnetoencephalographic Imaging of Auditory and Somatosensory Cortical Responses in Children with Autism and Sensory Processing Dysfunction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carly Demopoulos


    Full Text Available This study compared magnetoencephalographic (MEG imaging-derived indices of auditory and somatosensory cortical processing in children aged 8–12 years with autism spectrum disorder (ASD; N = 18, those with sensory processing dysfunction (SPD; N = 13 who do not meet ASD criteria, and typically developing control (TDC; N = 19 participants. The magnitude of responses to both auditory and tactile stimulation was comparable across all three groups; however, the M200 latency response from the left auditory cortex was significantly delayed in the ASD group relative to both the TDC and SPD groups, whereas the somatosensory response of the ASD group was only delayed relative to TDC participants. The SPD group did not significantly differ from either group in terms of somatosensory latency, suggesting that participants with SPD may have an intermediate phenotype between ASD and TDC with regard to somatosensory processing. For the ASD group, correlation analyses indicated that the left M200 latency delay was significantly associated with performance on the WISC-IV Verbal Comprehension Index as well as the DSTP Acoustic-Linguistic index. Further, these cortical auditory response delays were not associated with somatosensory cortical response delays or cognitive processing speed in the ASD group, suggesting that auditory delays in ASD are domain specific rather than associated with generalized processing delays. The specificity of these auditory delays to the ASD group, in addition to their correlation with verbal abilities, suggests that auditory sensory dysfunction may be implicated in communication symptoms in ASD, motivating further research aimed at understanding the impact of sensory dysfunction on the developing brain.

  11. Inhibitory rTMS applied on somatosensory cortex in Wilson's disease patients with hand dystonia. (United States)

    Lozeron, Pierre; Poujois, Aurélia; Meppiel, Elodie; Masmoudi, Sana; Magnan, Thierry Peron; Vicaut, Eric; Houdart, Emmanuel; Guichard, Jean-Pierre; Trocello, Jean-Marc; Woimant, France; Kubis, Nathalie


    Hand dystonia is a common complication of Wilson's disease (WD), responsible for handwriting difficulties and disability. Alteration of sensorimotor integration and overactivity of the somatosensory cortex have been demonstrated in dystonia. This study investigated the immediate after effect of an inhibitory repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) applied over the somatosensory cortex on the writing function in WD patients with hand dystonia. We performed a pilot prospective randomized double-blind sham-controlled crossover rTMS study. A 20-min 1-Hz rTMS session, stereotaxically guided, was applied over the left somatosensory cortex in 13 WD patients with right dystonic writer's cramp. After 3 days, each patient was crossed-over to the alternative treatment. Patients were clinically evaluated before and immediately after each rTMS session with the Unified Wilson's Disease rating scale (UWDRS), the Writers' Cramp Rating Scale (WCRS), a specifically designed scale for handwriting difficulties in Wilson's disease patients (FAR, flow, accuracy, and rhythmicity evaluation), and a visual analog scale (VAS) for handwriting discomfort. No significant change in UWDRS, WCRS, VAS, or FAR scores was observed in patients treated with somatosensory inhibitory rTMS compared to the sham protocol. The FAR negatively correlated with UWDRS (r = -0.6; P = 0.02), but not with the WCRS score, disease duration, MRI diffusion lesions, or with atrophy scores. In our experimental conditions, a single inhibitory rTMS session applied over somatosensory cortex did not improve dystonic writer cramp in WD patients.

  12. Influence of body position on cortical pain-related somatosensory processing: an ERP study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chiara Spironelli

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Despite the consistent information available on the physiological changes induced by head down bed rest, a condition which simulates space microgravity, our knowledge on the possible perceptual-cortical alterations is still poor. The present study investigated the effects of 2-h head-down bed rest on subjective and cortical responses elicited by electrical, pain-related somatosensory stimulation. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Twenty male subjects were randomly assigned to two groups, head-down bed rest (BR or sitting control condition. Starting from individual electrical thresholds, Somatosensory Evoked Potentials were elicited by electrical stimuli administered randomly to the left wrist and divided into four conditions: control painless condition, electrical pain threshold, 30% above pain threshold, 30% below pain threshold. Subjective pain ratings collected during the EEG session showed significantly reduced pain perception in BR compared to Control group. Statistical analysis on four electrode clusters and sLORETA source analysis revealed, in sitting controls, a P1 component (40-50 ms in the right somatosensory cortex, whereas it was bilateral and differently located in BR group. Controls' N1 (80-90 ms had widespread right hemisphere activation, involving also anterior cingulate, whereas BR group showed primary somatosensory cortex activation. The P2 (190-220 ms was larger in left-central locations of Controls compared with BR group. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Head-down bed rest was associated to an overall decrease of pain sensitivity and an altered pain network also outside the primary somatosensory cortex. Results have implications not only for astronauts' health and spaceflight risks, but also for the clinical aspects of pain detection in bedridden patients at risk of fatal undetected complications.

  13. Projectables

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Troels A.; Merritt, Timothy R.


    CNC cutting machines have become essential tools for designers and architects enabling rapid prototyping, model-building and production of high quality components. Designers often cut from new materials, discarding the irregularly shaped remains. We introduce ProjecTables, a visual augmented...... reality system for interactive packing of model parts onto sheet materials. ProjecTables enables designers to (re)use scrap materials for CNC cutting that would have been previously thrown away, at the same time supporting aesthetic choices related to wood grain, avoiding surface blemishes, and other...... relevant material properties. We conducted evaluations of ProjecTables with design students from Aarhus School of Architecture, demonstrating that participants could quickly and easily place and orient model parts reducing material waste. Contextual interviews and ideation sessions led to a deeper...

  14. Uncovering sensory axonal dysfunction in asymptomatic type 2 diabetic neuropathy.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jia-Ying Sung

    Full Text Available This study investigated sensory and motor nerve excitability properties to elucidate the development of diabetic neuropathy. A total of 109 type 2 diabetes patients were recruited, and 106 were analyzed. According to neuropathy severity, patients were categorized into G0, G1, and G2+3 groups using the total neuropathy score-reduced (TNSr. Patients in the G0 group were asymptomatic and had a TNSr score of 0. Sensory and motor nerve excitability data from diabetic patients were compared with data from 33 healthy controls. Clinical assessment, nerve conduction studies, and sensory and motor nerve excitability testing data were analyzed to determine axonal dysfunction in diabetic neuropathy. In the G0 group, sensory excitability testing revealed increased stimulus for the 50% sensory nerve action potential (P<0.05, shortened strength-duration time constant (P<0.01, increased superexcitability (P<0.01, decreased subexcitability (P<0.05, decreased accommodation to depolarizing current (P<0.01, and a trend of decreased accommodation to hyperpolarizing current in threshold electrotonus. All the changes progressed into G1 (TNSr 1-8 and G2+3 (TNSr 9-24 groups. In contrast, motor excitability only had significantly increased stimulus for the 50% compound motor nerve action potential (P<0.01 in the G0 group. This study revealed that the development of axonal dysfunction in sensory axons occurred prior to and in a different fashion from motor axons. Additionally, sensory nerve excitability tests can detect axonal dysfunction even in asymptomatic patients. These insights further our understanding of diabetic neuropathy and enable the early detection of sensory axonal abnormalities, which may provide a basis for neuroprotective therapeutic approaches.

  15. Pannexin 1 Modulates Axonal Growth in Mouse Peripheral Nerves

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven M. Horton


    Full Text Available The pannexin family of channels consists of three members—pannexin-1 (Panx1, pannexin-2 (Panx2, and pannexin-3 (Panx3 that enable the exchange of metabolites and signaling molecules between intracellular and extracellular compartments. Pannexin-mediated release of intracellular ATP into the extracellular space has been tied to a number of cellular activities, primarily through the activity of type P2 purinergic receptors. Previous work indicates that the opening of Panx1 channels and activation of purinergic receptors by extracellular ATP may cause inflammation and apoptosis. In the CNS (central nervous system and PNS (peripheral nervous system, coupled pannexin, and P2 functions have been linked to peripheral sensitization (pain pathways. Purinergic pathways are also essential for other critical processes in the PNS, including myelination and neurite outgrowth. However, whether such pathways are pannexin-dependent remains to be determined. In this study, we use a Panx1 knockout mouse model and pharmacological inhibitors of the Panx1 and the ATP-mediated signaling pathway to fill gaps in our understanding of Panx1 localization in peripheral nerves, roles for Panx1 in axonal outgrowth and myelination, and neurite extension. Our data show that Panx1 is localized to axonal, myelin, and vascular compartments of the peripheral nerves. Knockout of Panx1 gene significantly increased axonal caliber in vivo and axonal growth rate in cultured dorsal root ganglia (DRG neurons. Furthermore, genetic knockout of Panx1 or inhibition of components of purinergic signaling, by treatment with probenecid and apyrase, resulted in denser axonal outgrowth from cultured DRG explants compared to untreated wild-types. Our findings suggest that Panx1 regulates axonal growth in the peripheral nervous system.

  16. Studies of axon-glial cell interactions and periaxonal K+ homeostasis--II. The effect of axonal stimulation, cholinergic agents and transport inhibitors on the resistance in series with the axon membrane. (United States)

    Hassan, S; Lieberman, E M


    The small electrical resistance in series with the axon membrane is generally modeled as the intercellular pathway for current flow through the periaxonal glial (Schwann cell) sheath. The series resistance of the medial giant axon of the crayfish, Procambarus clarkii, was found to vary with conditions known to affect the electrical properties of the periaxonal glia. Series resistance was estimated from computer analysed voltage waveforms generated by axial wire-constant current and space clamp techniques. The average series resistance for all axons was 6.2 +/- 0.5 omega cm2 (n = 128). Values ranged between 1 and 30 omega cm2. The series resistance of axons with low resting membrane resistance (less than 1500 omega cm2) increased an average of 30% when stimulated for 45 s to 7 min (50 Hz) whereas the series resistance of high membrane resistance (greater than 1500 omega cm2) axons decreased an average of 10%. Carbachol (10(-7) M) caused the series resistance of low membrane resistance axons to decrease during stimulation but had no effect on high membrane resistance axons. d-Tubocurare (10(-8) M) caused the series resistance of high membrane resistance axons to increase during stimulation but had no effect on low membrane resistance axons. Bumetanide, a Na-K-Cl cotransport inhibitor and low [K+]o, prevented the stimulation-induced increase in series resistance of low membrane resistance axons but had no effect on the high membrane resistance axons. The results suggest that the series resistance of axons varies in response to the activity of the glial K+ uptake mechanisms stimulated by the appearance of K+ in the periaxonal space during action potential generation.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  17. Orexin A and Orexin Receptor 1 axonal traffic in dorsal roots at the CNS/PNS interface

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Damien eColas


    Full Text Available Hypothalamic orexin/hypocretin neurons send long axonal projections through the dorsal spinal cord in lamina I-II of the dorsal horn at the interface with the peripheral nervous system (PNS. We show that in the dorsal horn OXA fibers colocalize with substance P (SP positive afferents of dorsal root ganglia (DRG neurons known to mediate sensory processing. Further, OR1 is expressed in p75NTR and SP positive DRG neurons, suggesting a potential signaling pathway between orexin and DRG neurons. Interestingly, DRG sensory neurons have a distinctive bifurcating axon where one branch innervates the periphery and the other one the spinal cord (pseudo-unipolar neurons, allowing for potential functional coupling of distinct targets. We observe that OR1 is transported selectively from DRG toward the spinal cord, while OXA is accumulated retrogradely toward the DRG. We hence report a rare situation of asymmetrical neuropeptide receptor distribution between axons projected by a single neuron. This molecular and cellular data are consistent with the role of OXA/OR1 in sensory processing, including DRG neuronal modulation, and support the potential existence of an OX/HCRT circuit between CNS and PNS.

  18. Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, Hypermobility Type: Impact of Somatosensory Orthoses on Postural Control (A Pilot Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emma G. Dupuy


    Full Text Available Elhers-Danlos syndrome (EDS is the clinical manifestation of connective tissue disorders, and comprises several clinical forms with no specific symptoms and selective medical examinations which result in a delay in diagnosis of about 10 years. The EDS hypermobility type (hEDS is characterized by generalized joint hypermobility, variable skin hyperextensibility and impaired proprioception. Since somatosensory processing and multisensory integration are crucial for both perception and action, we put forth the hypothesis that somatosensory deficits in hEDS patients may lead, among other clinical symptoms, to misperception of verticality and postural instability. Therefore, the purpose of this study was twofold: (i to assess the impact of somatosensory deficit on subjective visual vertical (SVV and postural stability; and (ii to quantify the effect of wearing somatosensory orthoses (i.e., compressive garments and insoles on postural stability. Six hEDS patients and six age- and gender-matched controls underwent a SVV (sitting, standing, lying on the right side evaluation and a postural control evaluation on a force platform (Synapsys, with or without visual information (eyes open (EO/eyes closed (EC. These two latter conditions performed either without orthoses, or with compression garments (CG, or insoles, or both. Results showed that patients did not exhibit a substantial perceived tilt of the visual vertical in the direction of the body tilt (Aubert effect as did the control subjects. Interestingly, such differential effects were only apparent when the rod was initially positioned to the left of the vertical axis (opposite the longitudinal body axis. In addition, patients showed greater postural instability (sway area than the controls. The removal of vision exacerbated this instability, especially in the mediolateral (ML direction. The wearing of orthoses improved postural stability, especially in the eyes-closed condition, with a particularly

  19. Quantifying mechanical force in axonal growth and guidance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ahmad Ibrahim Mahmoud Athamneh


    Full Text Available Mechanical force plays a fundamental role in neuronal development, physiology, and regeneration. In particular, research has shown that force is involved in growth cone-mediated axonal growth and guidance as well as stretch-induced elongation when an organism increases in size after forming initial synaptic connections. However, much of the details about the exact role of force in these fundamental processes remain unknown. In this review, we highlight (1 standing questions concerning the role of mechanical force in axonal growth and guidance and (2 different experimental techniques used to quantify forces in axons and growth cones. We believe that satisfying answers to these questions will require quantitative information about the relationship between elongation, forces, cytoskeletal dynamics, axonal transport, signaling, substrate adhesion, and stiffness contributing to directional growth advance. Furthermore, we address why a wide range of force values have been reported in the literature, and what these values mean in the context of neuronal mechanics. We hope that this review will provide a guide for those interested in studying the role of force in development and regeneration of neuronal networks.

  20. Investigation on the mechanism of peripheral axonal injury in glaucoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jun- Hong Zhao


    Full Text Available AIM: To compare the angles of longitudinal section of sclera around optic nerve heads and the never fiber layer changes in healthy adults and patients with glaucoma, and to investigate the mechanism of peripheral retinal axonal injury, with the combined knowledge of biomechanics. METHODS: The optical nerves and their peripheral tissue specimen in the 12 eyes from health adult donators and 12 eyes from glaucoma patient donators were dyed by Glees' method to compare the angles of longitudinal section of sclera around optic nerve heads(through optic nerve center, and to observe the anatomical features of the peripheral retinal axons. RESULTS: The mean angle of longitudinal section of sclera around optic nerve in healthy adults was 73.3°, while that in patients with absolute glaucoma was 75.6°. The difference showed no significance(t=1.44, P>0.05. There was a sharp bend in the course of peripheral optical fiber in healthy adults. However, the optic nerve fiber disappeared completely in patients with glaucoma end stage. CONCLUSION: The angle between the medial edge and leading edge of sclera(around optic nerve headsis an acute angle. The optical fiber in glaucoma end stage disappeared completely. The phenomenon may be related to high intraocular pressure, the sclera shape, the shear modulus of sclera and axons, and “axonal bending-injury” mechanism.

  1. RGM is a repulsive guidance molecule for retinal axons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Monnier, Philippe P; Sierra, Ana; Macchi, Paolo


    with known guidance cues, and its messenger RNA is distributed in a gradient with increasing concentration from the anterior to posterior pole of the embryonic tectum. Recombinant RGM at low nanomolar concentration induces collapse of temporal but not of nasal growth cones and guides temporal retinal axons...

  2. IFNgamma enhances microglial reactions to hippocampal axonal degeneration

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, M B; Hegelund, I V; Lomholt, N D


    periods. Message for the immune cytokine interferon-gamma (IFNgamma) was undetectable, and glial reactivity to axonal lesions occurred as normal in IFNgamma-deficient mice. Microglial responses to lesion-induced neuronal injury were markedly enhanced in myelin basic protein promoter-driven transgenic mice...

  3. Multiple sclerosis and anterograde axonal degeneration study by magnetic resonance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Martinez Pardo, P.; Capdevila Cirera, A.; Sanz Marin, P.M.; Gili Planas, J.


    Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disease of the central nervous system that affects specifically the myelin. Its diagnosis by imaging techniques is, since the development of magnetic resonance (MR), relatively simple, and its occasional association with anterograde axonal degeneration (WD) has been reported. In both disorders, there is a lengthening of the T1 and T2 relaxation times. In the present report, 76 patients with MS with less than 4 plaques in the typical periventricular position were studied retrospectively, resulting in a rate of association with anterograde axonal degeneration of 8%. We consider that in spite of their same behavior in MR,MS and WD, with moreover represent completely different pathologies, are perfectly differential by MR. The S-E images with longer repetition and echo times in the axial and coronal planes have proved to be those most sensitive for this differentiation. Given that MS is specific pathology of then myelin, the axonal damages in delayed until several plaques adjacent to an axon affect it. We consider that this, added to the restriction of our study group (less than 4 plaques), is the cause of the pow percentage of the MS-WD association in our study. (Author)

  4. Chronic severe axonal polyneuropathy associated with hyperthyroidism and multivitamin deficiency. (United States)

    Sugie, Kazuma; Umehara, Fujio; Kataoka, Hiroshi; Kumazawa, Aya; Ueno, Satoshi


    Hyperthyroidism is often associated with various neuromuscular disorders, most commonly proximal myopathy. Peripheral nerve involvement in hyperthyroidism is very uncommon and has rarely been reported. We describe a 29-year-old woman with untreated hyperthyroidism who presented with chronic severe axonal sensory-motor polyneuropathy. Peripheral nerve involvement developed together with other symptoms of hyperthyroidism 2 years before presentation. She also had anorexia nervosa for the past 6 months, resulting in multivitamin deficiency. Electrophysiological and pathological findings as well as clinical manifestations confirmed the diagnosis of severe axonal polyneuropathy. Anorexia nervosa has been considered a manifestation of untreated hyperthyroidism. We considered hyperthyroidism to be an important causal factor in the polyneuropathy in our patient, although peripheral nerve involvement in hyperthyroidism is rare. To our knowledge, this is the first documented case of chronic severe axonal polyneuropathy ascribed to both hyperthyroidism and multivitamin deficiency. Our findings strongly suggest that not only multivitamin deficiency, but also hyperthyroidism can cause axonal polyneuropathy, thus expanding the clinical spectrum of hyperthyroidism.

  5. Impaired Mitochondrial Dynamics Underlie Axonal Defects in Hereditary Spastic Paraplegias. (United States)

    Denton, Kyle; Mou, Yongchao; Xu, Chong-Chong; Shah, Dhruvi; Chang, Jaerak; Blackstone, Craig; Li, Xue-Jun


    Mechanisms by which long corticospinal axons degenerate in hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP) are largely unknown. Here, we have generated induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) from patients with two autosomal recessive forms of HSP, SPG15 and SPG48, which are caused by mutations in the ZFYVE26 and AP5Z1 genes encoding proteins in the same complex, the spastizin and AP5Z1 proteins, respectively. In patient iPSC-derived telencephalic glutamatergic and midbrain dopaminergic neurons, neurite number, length and branching are significantly reduced, recapitulating disease-specific phenotypes. We analyzed mitochondrial morphology and noted a significant reduction in both mitochondrial length and their densities within axons of these HSP neurons. Mitochondrial membrane potential was also decreased, confirming functional mitochondrial defects. Notably, mdivi-1, an inhibitor of the mitochondrial fission GTPase DRP1, rescues mitochondrial morphology defects and suppresses the impairment in neurite outgrowth and late-onset apoptosis in HSP neurons. Furthermore, knockdown of these HSP genes causes similar axonal defects, also mitigated by treatment with mdivi-1. Finally, neurite outgrowth defects in SPG15 and SPG48 cortical neurons can be rescued by knocking down DRP1 directly. Thus, abnormal mitochondrial morphology caused by an imbalance of mitochondrial fission and fusion underlies specific axonal defects and serves as a potential therapeutic target for SPG15 and SPG48.

  6. Botulinum toxin's axonal transport from periphery to the spinal cord. (United States)

    Matak, Ivica; Riederer, Peter; Lacković, Zdravko


    Axonal transport of enzymatically active botulinum toxin A (BTX-A) from periphery to the CNS has been described in facial and trigeminal nerve, leading to cleavage of synaptosomal-associated protein 25 (SNAP-25) in central nuclei. Aim of present study was to examine the existence of axonal transport of peripherally applied BTX-A to spinal cord via sciatic nerve. We employed BTX-A-cleaved SNAP-25 immunohistochemistry of lumbar spinal cord after intramuscular and subcutaneous hind limb injections, and intraneural BTX-A sciatic nerve injections. Truncated SNAP-25 in ipsilateral spinal cord ventral horns and dorsal horns appeared after single peripheral BTX-A administrations, even at low intramuscular dose applied (5 U/kg). Cleaved SNAP-25 appearance in the spinal cord after BTX-A injection into the sciatic nerve was prevented by proximal intrasciatic injection of colchicine (5 mM, 2 μl). Cleaved SNAP-25 in ventral horn, using choline-acetyltransferase (ChAT) double labeling, was localized within cholinergic neurons. These results extend the recent findings on BTX-A retrograde axonal transport in facial and trigeminal nerve. Appearance of truncated SNAP-25 in spinal cord following low-dose peripheral BTX-A suggest that the axonal transport of BTX-A occurs commonly following peripheral application. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Computed tomography in diagnosis of diffuse axonal injury

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Iwadate, Yasuo; Ono, Juniti; Okimura, Yoshitaka; Suda, Sumio; Isobe, Katsumi; Yamaura, Akira.


    Diffuse axonal injury (DAI) has been described in instances of prolonged traumatic coma on the basis of the neuropathological findings, but the same findings are also found in patients with cerebral concussion. Experimental studies confirm that the quality of survivors following trauma is directly proportional to the amount of primarily injured-axon. When the injured axon lies in a widespread area of the brain, outcome for the patient is always poor. In a series of 260 severely head-injured patients, based on their poor outcome, 69 (27%) were diagnosed as DAI. Because of their relatively good outcome, eighty-two patients (32%) were classified into non-DAI group. The predominant CT finding of DAI patients was intraparenchymal deep-seated hemorrhagic lesion. This was observed in 28 patients (41%). Normal CT was also observed in 11 patients (16%). On the other hand, 8 of the non-DAI group (10%) manifested deep-seated lesions. Diffuse cerebral swelling (DCS) appeared in both groups in the same incidence. Subarachnoid hematoma in the perimesencephalic cistern (SAH (PMC)) and intraventricular hematoma (IVH) were observed in 64% of the DAI group, and in 23% of the non-DAI group. The available evidence indicates that various types of hematoma seen in the deep-seated structures of the brain do not have an absolute diagnostic value, but the frequency of hematoma is thought to increase in proportion to the amount of injured-axon. (author)

  8. Unravelling the incidence and etiology of chronic idiopathic axonal polyneuropathy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Visser, N.A.


    Chronic idiopathic axonal polyneuropathy (CIAP) is a sensory or sensorimotor polyneuropathy that has a slowly progressive course without severe disability. CIAP is diagnosed in a significant proportion of patients with polyneuropathy, but precise figures on the incidence of polyneuropathy and CIAP

  9. Foxg1 regulates retinal axon pathfinding by repressing an ipsilateral program in nasal retina and by causing optic chiasm cells to exert a net axonal growth-promoting activity. (United States)

    Tian, Natasha M; Pratt, Thomas; Price, David J


    Mammalian binocular vision relies on the divergence of retinal ganglion cell axons at the optic chiasm, with strictly controlled numbers projecting contralaterally and ipsilaterally. In mouse, contralateral projections arise from the entire retina, whereas ipsilateral projections arise from ventrotemporal retina. We investigate how development of these patterns of projection is regulated by the contralateral determinant Foxg1, a forkhead box transcription factor expressed in nasal retina and at the chiasm. In nasal retina, loss of Foxg1 causes increased numbers of ipsilateral projections and ectopic expression of the ipsilateral determinants Zic2, Ephb1 and Foxd1, indicating that nasal retina is competent to express an ipsilateral program that is normally suppressed by Foxg1. Using co-cultures that combine Foxg1-expressing with Foxg1-null retinal explants and chiasm cells, we provide functional evidence that Foxg1 promotes contralateral projections through actions in nasal retina, and that in chiasm cells, Foxg1 is required for the generation of a hitherto unrecognized activity supporting RGC axon growth.

  10. Cerebellum tunes the excitability of the motor system: evidence from peripheral motor axons. (United States)

    Nodera, Hiroyuki; Manto, Mario


    Cerebellum is highly connected with the contralateral cerebral cortex. So far, the motor deficits observed in acute focal cerebellar lesions in human have been mainly explained on the basis of a disruption of the cerebello-thalamo-cortical projections. Cerebellar circuits have also numerous anatomical and functional interactions with brainstem nuclei and projects also directly to the spinal cord. Cerebellar lesions alter the excitability of peripheral motor axons as demonstrated by peripheral motor threshold-tracking techniques in cerebellar stroke. The biophysical changes are correlated with the functional scores. Nerve excitability measurements represent an attractive tool to extract the rules underlying the tuning of excitability of the motor pathways by the cerebellum and to discover the contributions of each cerebellar nucleus in this key function, contributing to early plasticity and sensorimotor learning.

  11. Cortical somatosensory-evoked potentials during spine surgery in patients with neuromuscular and idiopathic scoliosis under propofol-remifentanil anaesthesia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hermanns, H.; Lipfert, P.; Meier, S.; Jetzek-Zader, M.; Krauspe, R.; Stevens, M. F.


    BACKGROUND: Intraoperative monitoring of the spinal cord via cortical somatosensory-evoked potentials (SSEP) is a routine during spinal surgery. However, especially in neuromuscular scoliosis, the reliability of cortical SSEP has been questioned. Therefore, we compared the feasibility of cortical

  12. Glutamate-Mediated Primary Somatosensory Cortex Excitability Correlated with Circulating Copper and Ceruloplasmin

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    Franca Tecchio


    Full Text Available Objective. To verify whether markers of metal homeostasis are related to a magnetoencephalographic index representative of glutamate-mediated excitability of the primary somatosensory cortex. The index is identified as the source strength of the earliest component (M20 of the somatosensory magnetic fields (SEFs evoked by right median nerve stimulation at wrist. Method. Thirty healthy right-handed subjects (51±22 years were enrolled in the study. A source reconstruction algorithm was applied to assess the amount of synchronously activated neurons subtending the M20 and the following SEF component (M30, which is generated by two independent contributions of gabaergic and glutamatergic transmission. Serum copper, ceruloplasmin, iron, transferrin, transferrin saturation, and zinc levels were measured. Results. Total copper and ceruloplasmin negatively correlated with the M20 source strength. Conclusion. This pilot study suggests that higher level of body copper reserve, as marked by ceruloplasmin variations, parallels lower cortical glutamatergic responsiveness.

  13. A functional MRI study of somatotopic representation of somatosensory stimulation in the cerebellum

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    Takanashi, M.; Abe, K.; Yanagihara, T.; Sakoda, S. [Dept. of Neurology D4, Osaka Univ. Graduate School of Medicine, Suita City, Osaka (Japan); Tanaka, H.; Hirabuki, N.; Nakamura, H.; Fujita, N. [Dept. of Radiology, Osaka Univ. Graduate School of Medicine, Suita City, Osaka (Japan)


    Somatotopic representation in the cerebral cortex of somatosensory stimulation has been widely reported, but that in the cerebellum has not. We investigated the latter in the human cerebellum by functional MRI (fMRI). Using a 1.5 tesla imager, we obtained multislice blood oxygen level-dependent fMRI with single-shot gradient-echo echoplanar imaging in seven right-handed volunteers during electrical stimulation of the left index finger and big toe. In the anterior and posterior cerebellum, activated pixels for the index finger were separate from those for the toe. This suggests that somatosensory stimulation of different parts of the body may involve distinct areas of in the cerebellum as well as the cerebral cortex. (orig.)

  14. A functional MRI study of somatotopic representation of somatosensory stimulation in the cerebellum

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Takanashi, M.; Abe, K.; Yanagihara, T.; Sakoda, S.; Tanaka, H.; Hirabuki, N.; Nakamura, H.; Fujita, N.


    Somatotopic representation in the cerebral cortex of somatosensory stimulation has been widely reported, but that in the cerebellum has not. We investigated the latter in the human cerebellum by functional MRI (fMRI). Using a 1.5 tesla imager, we obtained multislice blood oxygen level-dependent fMRI with single-shot gradient-echo echoplanar imaging in seven right-handed volunteers during electrical stimulation of the left index finger and big toe. In the anterior and posterior cerebellum, activated pixels for the index finger were separate from those for the toe. This suggests that somatosensory stimulation of different parts of the body may involve distinct areas of in the cerebellum as well as the cerebral cortex. (orig.)

  15. Oligodendrocyte Development in the Absence of Their Target Axons In Vivo.

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    Rafael Almeida

    Full Text Available Oligodendrocytes form myelin around axons of the central nervous system, enabling saltatory conduction. Recent work has established that axons can regulate certain aspects of oligodendrocyte development and myelination, yet remarkably oligodendrocytes in culture retain the ability to differentiate in the absence of axons and elaborate myelin sheaths around synthetic axon-like substrates. It remains unclear the extent to which the life-course of oligodendrocytes requires the presence of, or signals derived from axons in vivo. In particular, it is unclear whether the specific axons fated for myelination regulate the oligodendrocyte population in a living organism, and if so, which precise steps of oligodendrocyte-cell lineage progression are regulated by target axons. Here, we use live-imaging of zebrafish larvae carrying transgenic reporters that label oligodendrocyte-lineage cells to investigate which aspects of oligodendrocyte development, from specification to differentiation, are affected when we manipulate the target axonal environment. To drastically reduce the number of axons targeted for myelination, we use a previously identified kinesin-binding protein (kbp mutant, in which the first myelinated axons in the spinal cord, reticulospinal axons, do not fully grow in length, creating a region in the posterior spinal cord where most initial targets for myelination are absent. We find that a 73% reduction of reticulospinal axon surface in the posterior spinal cord of kbp mutants results in a 27% reduction in the number of oligodendrocytes. By time-lapse analysis of transgenic OPC reporters, we find that the reduction in oligodendrocyte number is explained by a reduction in OPC proliferation and survival. Interestingly, OPC specification and migration are unaltered in the near absence of normal axonal targets. Finally, we find that timely differentiation of OPCs into oligodendrocytes does not depend at all on the presence of target axons

  16. Time course of ongoing activity during neuritis and following axonal transport disruption. (United States)

    Satkeviciute, Ieva; Goodwin, George; Bove, Geoffrey M; Dilley, Andrew


    Local nerve inflammation (neuritis) leads to ongoing activity and axonal mechanical sensitivity (AMS) along intact nociceptor axons and disrupts axonal transport. This phenomenon forms the most feasible cause of radiating pain, such as sciatica. We have previously shown that axonal transport disruption without inflammation or degeneration also leads to AMS but does not cause ongoing activity at the time point when AMS occurs, despite causing cutaneous hypersensitivity. However, there have been no systematic studies of ongoing activity during neuritis or noninflammatory axonal transport disruption. In this study, we present the time course of ongoing activity from primary sensory neurons following neuritis and vinblastine-induced axonal transport disruption. Whereas 24% of C/slow Aδ-fiber neurons had ongoing activity during neuritis, few (disruption of axonal transport without inflammation does not lead to ongoing activity in sensory neurons, including nociceptors, but does cause a rapid and transient development of AMS. Because it is proposed that AMS underlies mechanically induced radiating pain, and a transient disruption of axonal transport (as previously reported) leads to transient AMS, it follows that processes that disrupt axonal transport, such as neuritis, must persist to maintain AMS and the associated symptoms. NEW & NOTEWORTHY Many patients with radiating pain lack signs of nerve injury on clinical examination but may have neuritis, which disrupts axonal transport. We have shown that axonal transport disruption does not induce ongoing activity in primary sensory neurons but does cause transient axonal mechanical sensitivity. The present data complete a profile of key axonal sensitivities following axonal transport disruption. Collectively, this profile supports that an active peripheral process is necessary for maintained axonal sensitivities.

  17. Vestibular-Somatosensory Convergence in Head Movement Control During Locomotion after Long-Duration Space Flight (United States)

    Mulavara, Ajitkumar; Ruttley, Tara; Cohen, Helen; Peters, Brian; Miller, Chris; Brady, Rachel; Merkle, Lauren; Bloomberg, Jacob


    Exposure to the microgravity conditions of space flight induces adaptive modification in the control of vestibular-mediated reflexive head movement during locomotion after space flight. Space flight causes astronauts to be exposed to somatosensory adaptation in both the vestibular and body load-sensing (BLS) systems. The goal of these studies was to examine the contributions of vestibular and BLS-mediated somatosensory influences on head movement control during locomotion after long-duration space flight. Subjects were asked to walk on a treadmill driven at 1.8 m/s while performing a visual acuity task. Data were collected using the same testing protocol from three independent subject groups; 1) normal subjects before and after exposure to 30 minutes of 40% bodyweight unloaded treadmill walking, 2) bilateral labyrinthine deficient (LD) patients and 3) astronauts who performed the protocol before and after long duration space flight. Motion data from head and trunk segmental motion data were obtained to calculate the angular head pitch (HP) movements during walking trials while subjects performed the visual task, to estimate the contributions of vestibular reflexive mechanisms in HP movements. Results showed that exposure to unloaded locomotion caused a significant increase in HP movements, whereas in the LD patients the HP movements were significantly decreased. Astronaut subjects results showed a heterogeneous response of both increases and decreases in the amplitude of HP movement. We infer that BLS-mediated somatosensory input centrally modulates vestibular input and can adaptively modify head-movement control during locomotion. Thus, space flight may cause a central adaptation mediated by the converging vestibular and body load-sensing somatosensory systems.

  18. Decreased Somatosensory Activity to Non-threatening Touch in Combat Veterans with Posttraumatic Stress Disorder


    Badura-Brack, Amy S.; Becker, Katherine M.; McDermott, Timothy J.; Ryan, Tara J.; Becker, Madelyn M.; Hearley, Allison R.; Heinrichs-Graham, Elizabeth; Wilson, Tony W.


    Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a severe psychiatric disorder prevalent in combat veterans. Previous neuroimaging studies have demonstrated that patients with PTSD exhibit abnormal responses to non-threatening visual and auditory stimuli, but have not examined somatosensory processing. Thirty male combat veterans, 16 with PTSD and 14 without, completed a tactile stimulation task during a 306-sensor magnetoencephalography (MEG) recording. Significant oscillatory neural responses were i...

  19. Skill-Specific Changes in Somatosensory Nogo Potentials in Baseball Players.

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    Koya Yamashiro

    Full Text Available Athletic training is known to induce neuroplastic alterations in specific somatosensory circuits, which are reflected by changes in somatosensory evoked potentials and event-related potentials. The aim of this study was to clarify whether specific athletic training also affects somatosensory Nogo potentials related to the inhibition of movements. The Nogo potentials were recorded at nine cortical electrode positions (Fz, Cz, Pz, F3, F4, C3, C4, P3 and P4 in 12 baseball players (baseball group and in 12 athletes in sports, such as track and field events and swimming, that do not require response inhibition, such as batting for training or performance (sports group. The Nogo potentials and Go/Nogo reaction times (Go/Nogo RTs were measured under a somatosensory Go/Nogo paradigm in which subjects were instructed to rapidly push a button in response to stimulus presentation. The Nogo potentials were obtained by subtracting the Go trial from the Nogo trial. The peak Nogo-N2 was significantly shorter in the baseball group than that in the sports group. In addition, the amplitude of Nogo-N2 in the frontal area was significantly larger in the baseball group than that in the sports group. There was a significant positive correlation between the latency of Nogo-N2 and Go/Nogo RT. Moreover, there were significant correlations between the Go/Nogo RT and both the amplitude of Nogo-N2 and Nogo-P3 (i.e., amplitude of the Nogo-potentials increases with shorter RT. Specific athletic training regimens may induce neuroplastic alterations in sensorimotor inhibitory processes.

  20. Inhibition of somatosensory-evoked cortical responses by a weak leading stimulus. (United States)

    Nakagawa, Kei; Inui, Koji; Yuge, Louis; Kakigi, Ryusuke


    We previously demonstrated that auditory-evoked cortical responses were suppressed by a weak leading stimulus in a manner similar to the prepulse inhibition (PPI) of startle reflexes. The purpose of the present study was to investigate whether a similar phenomenon was present in the somatosensory system, and also whether this suppression reflected an inhibitory process. We recorded somatosensory-evoked magnetic fields following stimulation of the median nerve and evaluated the extent by which they were suppressed by inserting leading stimuli at an intensity of 2.5-, 1.5-, 1.1-, or 0.9-fold the sensory threshold (ST) in healthy participants (Experiment 1). The results obtained demonstrated that activity in the secondary somatosensory cortex in the hemisphere contralateral to the stimulated side (cSII) was significantly suppressed by a weak leading stimulus with the intensity larger than 1.1-fold ST. This result implied that the somatosensory system had an inhibitory process similar to that of PPI. We then presented two successive leading stimuli before the test stimulus, and compared the extent of suppression between the test stimulus-evoked responses and those obtained with the second prepulse alone and with two prepulses (first and second) (Experiment 2). When two prepulses were preceded, cSII responses to the second prepulse were suppressed by the first prepulse, whereas the ability of the second prepulse to suppress the test stimulus remained unchanged. These results suggested the presence of at least two individual pathways; response-generating and inhibitory pathways. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. The interaction between felt touch and tactile consequences of observed actions: an action-based somatosensory congruency paradigm. (United States)

    Deschrijver, Eliane; Wiersema, Jan R; Brass, Marcel


    Action observation leads to a representation of both the motor aspect of an observed action (motor simulation) and its somatosensory consequences (action-based somatosensory simulation) in the observer's brain. In the current electroencephalography-study, we investigated the neuronal interplay of action-based somatosensory simulation and felt touch. We presented index or middle finger tapping movements of a human or a wooden hand, while simultaneously presenting 'tap-like' tactile sensations to either the corresponding or non-corresponding fingertip of the participant. We focused on an early stage of somatosensory processing [P50, N100 and N140 sensory evoked potentials (SEPs)] and on a later stage of higher-order processing (P3-complex). The results revealed an interaction effect of animacy and congruency in the early P50 SEP and an animacy effect in the N100/N140 SEPs. In the P3-complex, we found an interaction effect indicating that the influence of congruency was larger in the human than in the wooden hand. We argue that the P3-complex may reflect higher-order self-other distinction by signaling simulated action-based touch that does not match own tactile information. As such, the action-based somatosensory congruency paradigm might help understand higher-order social processes from a somatosensory point of view. © The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press. For Permissions, please email:

  2. An αII Spectrin-Based Cytoskeleton Protects Large-Diameter Myelinated Axons from Degeneration. (United States)

    Huang, Claire Yu-Mei; Zhang, Chuansheng; Zollinger, Daniel R; Leterrier, Christophe; Rasband, Matthew N


    Axons must withstand mechanical forces, including tension, torsion, and compression. Spectrins and actin form a periodic cytoskeleton proposed to protect axons against these forces. However, because spectrins also participate in assembly of axon initial segments (AISs) and nodes of Ranvier, it is difficult to uncouple their roles in maintaining axon integrity from their functions at AIS and nodes. To overcome this problem and to determine the importance of spectrin cytoskeletons for axon integrity, we generated mice with αII spectrin-deficient peripheral sensory neurons. The axons of these neurons are very long and exposed to the mechanical forces associated with limb movement; most lack an AIS, and some are unmyelinated and have no nodes. We analyzed αII spectrin-deficient mice of both sexes and found that, in myelinated axons, αII spectrin forms a periodic cytoskeleton with βIV and βII spectrin at nodes of Ranvier and paranodes, respectively, but that loss of αII spectrin disrupts this organization. Avil-cre;Sptan1 f/f mice have reduced numbers of nodes, disrupted paranodal junctions, and mislocalized Kv1 K + channels. We show that the density of nodal βIV spectrin is constant among axons, but the density of nodal αII spectrin increases with axon diameter. Remarkably, Avil-cre;Sptan1 f/f mice have intact nociception and small-diameter axons, but severe ataxia due to preferential degeneration of large-diameter myelinated axons. Our results suggest that nodal αII spectrin helps resist the mechanical forces experienced by large-diameter axons, and that αII spectrin-dependent cytoskeletons are also required for assembly of nodes of Ranvier. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT A periodic axonal cytoskeleton consisting of actin and spectrin has been proposed to help axons resist the mechanical forces to which they are exposed (e.g., compression, torsion, and stretch). However, until now, no vertebrate animal model has tested the requirement of the spectrin cytoskeleton in

  3. Auditory-somatosensory bimodal stimulation desynchronizes brain circuitry to reduce tinnitus in guinea pigs and humans. (United States)

    Marks, Kendra L; Martel, David T; Wu, Calvin; Basura, Gregory J; Roberts, Larry E; Schvartz-Leyzac, Kara C; Shore, Susan E


    The dorsal cochlear nucleus is the first site of multisensory convergence in mammalian auditory pathways. Principal output neurons, the fusiform cells, integrate auditory nerve inputs from the cochlea with somatosensory inputs from the head and neck. In previous work, we developed a guinea pig model of tinnitus induced by noise exposure and showed that the fusiform cells in these animals exhibited increased spontaneous activity and cross-unit synchrony, which are physiological correlates of tinnitus. We delivered repeated bimodal auditory-somatosensory stimulation to the dorsal cochlear nucleus of guinea pigs with tinnitus, choosing a stimulus interval known to induce long-term depression (LTD). Twenty minutes per day of LTD-inducing bimodal (but not unimodal) stimulation reduced physiological and behavioral evidence of tinnitus in the guinea pigs after 25 days. Next, we applied the same bimodal treatment to 20 human subjects with tinnitus using a double-blinded, sham-controlled, crossover study. Twenty-eight days of LTD-inducing bimodal stimulation reduced tinnitus loudness and intrusiveness. Unimodal auditory stimulation did not deliver either benefit. Bimodal auditory-somatosensory stimulation that induces LTD in the dorsal cochlear nucleus may hold promise for suppressing chronic tinnitus, which reduces quality of life for millions of tinnitus sufferers worldwide. Copyright © 2018 The Authors, some rights reserved; exclusive licensee American Association for the Advancement of Science. No claim to original U.S. Government Works.

  4. Prefrontal cortex and somatosensory cortex in tactile crossmodal association: an independent component analysis of ERP recordings.

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    Yixuan Ku


    Full Text Available Our previous studies on scalp-recorded event-related potentials (ERPs showed that somatosensory N140 evoked by a tactile vibration in working memory tasks was enhanced when human subjects expected a coming visual stimulus that had been paired with the tactile stimulus. The results suggested that such enhancement represented the cortical activities involved in tactile-visual crossmodal association. In the present study, we further hypothesized that the enhancement represented the neural activities in somatosensory and frontal cortices in the crossmodal association. By applying independent component analysis (ICA to the ERP data, we found independent components (ICs located in the medial prefrontal cortex (around the anterior cingulate cortex, ACC and the primary somatosensory cortex (SI. The activity represented by the IC in SI cortex showed enhancement in expectation of the visual stimulus. Such differential activity thus suggested the participation of SI cortex in the task-related crossmodal association. Further, the coherence analysis and the Granger causality spectral analysis of the ICs showed that SI cortex appeared to cooperate with ACC in attention and perception of the tactile stimulus in crossmodal association. The results of our study support with new evidence an important idea in cortical neurophysiology: higher cognitive operations develop from the modality-specific sensory cortices (in the present study, SI cortex that are involved in sensation and perception of various stimuli.

  5. Asymmetric multisensory interactions of visual and somatosensory responses in a region of the rat parietal cortex.

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    Michael T Lippert

    Full Text Available Perception greatly benefits from integrating multiple sensory cues into a unified percept. To study the neural mechanisms of sensory integration, model systems are required that allow the simultaneous assessment of activity and the use of techniques to affect individual neural processes in behaving animals. While rodents qualify for these requirements, little is known about multisensory integration and areas involved for this purpose in the rodent. Using optical imaging combined with laminar electrophysiological recordings, the rat parietal cortex was identified as an area where visual and somatosensory inputs converge and interact. Our results reveal similar response patterns to visual and somatosensory stimuli at the level of current source density (CSD responses and multi-unit responses within a strip in parietal cortex. Surprisingly, a selective asymmetry was observed in multisensory interactions: when the somatosensory response preceded the visual response, supra-linear summation of CSD was observed, but the reverse stimulus order resulted in sub-linear effects in the CSD. This asymmetry was not present in multi-unit activity however, which showed consistently sub-linear interactions. These interactions were restricted to a specific temporal window, and pharmacological tests revealed significant local intra-cortical contributions to this phenomenon. Our results highlight the rodent parietal cortex as a system to model the neural underpinnings of multisensory processing in behaving animals and at the cellular level.

  6. Bilateral somatosensory evoked potentials following intermittent theta-burst repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation

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    Ziluk Angela


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Intermittent theta-burst stimulation (iTBS is a form of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation that may alter cortical excitability in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI. The present study investigated the effects of iTBS on subcortical and early cortical somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs recorded over left, iTBS stimulated SI and the right-hemisphere non-stimulated SI. SEPs were recorded before and at 5, 15, and 25 minutes following iTBS. Results Compared to pre-iTBS, the amplitude of cortical potential N20/P25 was significantly increased for 5 minutes from non-stimulated SI and for 15 to 25 minutes from stimulated SI. Subcortical potentials recorded bilaterally remained unaltered following iTBS. Conclusion We conclude that iTBS increases the cortical excitability of SI bilaterally and does not alter thalamocortical afferent input to SI. ITBS may provide one avenue to induce cortical plasticity in the somatosensory cortex.

  7. The effect of water immersion on short-latency somatosensory evoked potentials in human

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    Sato Daisuke


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Water immersion therapy is used to treat a variety of cardiovascular, respiratory, and orthopedic conditions. It can also benefit some neurological patients, although little is known about the effects of water immersion on neural activity, including somatosensory processing. To this end, we examined the effect of water immersion on short-latency somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs elicited by median nerve stimuli. Short-latency SEP recordings were obtained for ten healthy male volunteers at rest in or out of water at 30°C. Recordings were obtained from nine scalp electrodes according to the 10-20 system. The right median nerve at the wrist was electrically stimulated with the stimulus duration of 0.2 ms at 3 Hz. The intensity of the stimulus was fixed at approximately three times the sensory threshold. Results Water immersion significantly reduced the amplitudes of the short-latency SEP components P25 and P45 measured from electrodes over the parietal region and the P45 measured by central region. Conclusions Water immersion reduced short-latency SEP components known to originate in several cortical areas. Attenuation of short-latency SEPs suggests that water immersion influences the cortical processing of somatosensory inputs. Modulation of cortical processing may contribute to the beneficial effects of aquatic therapy. Trial Registration UMIN-CTR (UMIN000006492

  8. Visuotactile motion congruence enhances gamma-band activity in visual and somatosensory cortices. (United States)

    Krebber, Martin; Harwood, James; Spitzer, Bernhard; Keil, Julian; Senkowski, Daniel


    When touching and viewing a moving surface our visual and somatosensory systems receive congruent spatiotemporal input. Behavioral studies have shown that motion congruence facilitates interplay between visual and tactile stimuli, but the neural mechanisms underlying this interplay are not well understood. Neural oscillations play a role in motion processing and multisensory integration. They may also be crucial for visuotactile motion processing. In this electroencephalography study, we applied linear beamforming to examine the impact of visuotactile motion congruence on beta and gamma band activity (GBA) in visual and somatosensory cortices. Visual and tactile inputs comprised of gratings that moved either in the same or different directions. Participants performed a target detection task that was unrelated to motion congruence. While there were no effects in the beta band (13-21Hz), the power of GBA (50-80Hz) in visual and somatosensory cortices was larger for congruent compared with incongruent motion stimuli. This suggests enhanced bottom-up multisensory processing when visual and tactile gratings moved in the same direction. Supporting its behavioral relevance, GBA was correlated with shorter reaction times in the target detection task. We conclude that motion congruence plays an important role for the integrative processing of visuotactile stimuli in sensory cortices, as reflected by oscillatory responses in the gamma band. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Paradigms for restoration of somatosensory feedback via stimulation of the peripheral nervous system. (United States)

    Pasluosta, Cristian; Kiele, Patrick; Stieglitz, Thomas


    The somatosensory system contributes substantially to the integration of multiple sensor modalities into perception. Tactile sensations, proprioception and even temperature perception are integrated to perceive embodiment of our limbs. Damage of somatosensory networks can severely affect the execution of daily life activities. Peripheral injuries are optimally corrected via direct interfacing of the peripheral nerves. Recent advances in implantable devices, stimulation paradigms, and biomimetic sensors enabled the restoration of natural sensations after amputation of the limb. The refinement of stimulation patterns to deliver natural feedback that can be interpreted intuitively such to prescind from long-learning sessions is crucial to function restoration. For this review, we collected state-of-the-art knowledge on the evolution of stimulation paradigms from single fiber stimulation to the eliciting of multisensory sensations. Data from the literature are structured into six sections: (a) physiology of the somatosensory system; (b) stimulation of single fibers; (c) restoral of multisensory percepts; (d) closure of the control loop in hand prostheses; (e) sensory restoration and the sense of embodiment, and (f) methodologies to assess stimulation outcomes. Full functional recovery demands further research on multisensory integration and brain plasticity, which will bring new paradigms for intuitive sensory feedback in the next generation of limb prostheses. Copyright © 2017 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Differentiated effects of deep brain stimulation and medication on somatosensory processing in Parkinson's disease. (United States)

    Sridharan, Kousik Sarathy; Højlund, Andreas; Johnsen, Erik Lisbjerg; Sunde, Niels Aagaard; Johansen, Lars Gottfried; Beniczky, Sándor; Østergaard, Karen


    Deep brain stimulation (DBS) and dopaminergic medication effectively alleviate the motor symptoms in Parkinson's disease (PD) patients, but their effects on the sensory symptoms of PD are still not well understood. To explore early somatosensory processing in PD, we recorded magnetoencephalography (MEG) from thirteen DBS-treated PD patients and ten healthy controls during median nerve stimulation. PD patients were measured during DBS-treated, untreated and dopaminergic-medicated states. We focused on early cortical somatosensory processing as indexed by N20m, induced gamma augmentation (31-45Hz and 55-100Hz) and induced beta suppression (13-30Hz). PD patients' motor symptoms were assessed by UPDRS-III. Using Bayesian statistics, we found positive evidence for differentiated effects of treatments on the induced gamma augmentation (31-45Hz) with highest gamma in the dopaminergic-medicated state and lowest in the DBS-treated and untreated states. In contrast, UPDRS-III scores showed beneficial effects of both DBS and dopaminergic medication on the patients' motor symptoms. Furthermore, treatments did not affect the amplitude of N20m. Our results suggest differentiated effects of DBS and dopaminergic medication on cortical somatosensory processing in PD patients despite consistent ameliorating effects of both treatments on PD motor symptoms. The differentiated effect suggests differences in the effect mechanisms of the two treatments. Copyright © 2017 International Federation of Clinical Neurophysiology. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Seeing is not feeling: posterior parietal but not somatosensory cortex engagement during touch observation. (United States)

    Chan, Annie W-Y; Baker, Chris I


    Observing touch has been reported to elicit activation in human primary and secondary somatosensory cortices and is suggested to underlie our ability to interpret other's behavior and potentially empathy. However, despite these reports, there are a large number of inconsistencies in terms of the precise topography of activation, the extent of hemispheric lateralization, and what aspects of the stimulus are necessary to drive responses. To address these issues, we investigated the localization and functional properties of regions responsive to observed touch in a large group of participants (n = 40). Surprisingly, even with a lenient contrast of hand brushing versus brushing alone, we did not find any selective activation for observed touch in the hand regions of somatosensory cortex but rather in superior and inferior portions of neighboring posterior parietal cortex, predominantly in the left hemisphere. These regions in the posterior parietal cortex required the presence of both brush and hand to elicit strong responses and showed some selectivity for the form of the object or agent of touch. Furthermore, the inferior parietal region showed nonspecific tactile and motor responses, suggesting some similarity to area PFG in the monkey. Collectively, our findings challenge the automatic engagement of somatosensory cortex when observing touch, suggest mislocalization in previous studies, and instead highlight the role of posterior parietal cortex. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/351468-13$15.00/0.

  12. Environmental Subconcussive Injury, Axonal Injury, and Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy

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    Wendy A. Morley


    Full Text Available Brain injury occurs in two phases: the initial injury itself and a secondary cascade of precise immune-based neurochemical events. The secondary phase is typically functional in nature and characterized by delayed axonal injury with more axonal disconnections occurring than in the initial phase. Axonal injury occurs across the spectrum of disease severity, with subconcussive injury, especially when repetitive, now considered capable of producing significant neurological damage consistent with axonal injury seen in clinically evident concussion, despite no observable symptoms. This review is the first to introduce the concept of environmental subconcussive injury (ESCI and sets out how secondary brain damage from ESCI once past the juncture of microglial activation appears to follow the same neuron-damaging pathway as secondary brain damage from conventional brain injury. The immune response associated with ESCI is strikingly similar to that mounted after conventional concussion. Specifically, microglial activation is followed closely by glutamate and calcium flux, excitotoxicity, reactive oxygen species and reactive nitrogen species (RNS generation, lipid peroxidation, and mitochondrial dysfunction and energy crisis. ESCI damage also occurs in two phases, with the primary damage coming from microbiome injury (due to microbiome-altering events and secondary damage (axonal injury from progressive secondary neurochemical events. The concept of ESCI and the underlying mechanisms have profound implications for the understanding of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE etiology because it has previously been suggested that repetitive axonal injury may be the primary CTE pathogenesis in susceptible individuals and it is best correlated with lifetime brain trauma load. Taken together, it appears that susceptibility to brain injury and downstream neurodegenerative diseases, such as CTE, can be conceptualized as a continuum of brain resilience. At one end

  13. Morphological analysis of Drosophila larval peripheral sensory neuron dendrites and axons using genetic mosaics. (United States)

    Karim, M Rezaul; Moore, Adrian W


    Nervous system development requires the correct specification of neuron position and identity, followed by accurate neuron class-specific dendritic development and axonal wiring. Recently the dendritic arborization (DA) sensory neurons of the Drosophila larval peripheral nervous system (PNS) have become powerful genetic models in which to elucidate both general and class-specific mechanisms of neuron differentiation. There are four main DA neuron classes (I-IV)(1). They are named in order of increasing dendrite arbor complexity, and have class-specific differences in the genetic control of their differentiation(2-10). The DA sensory system is a practical model to investigate the molecular mechanisms behind the control of dendritic morphology(11-13) because: 1) it can take advantage of the powerful genetic tools available in the fruit fly, 2) the DA neuron dendrite arbor spreads out in only 2 dimensions beneath an optically clear larval cuticle making it easy to visualize with high resolution in vivo, 3) the class-specific diversity in dendritic morphology facilitates a comparative analysis to find key elements controlling the formation of simple vs. highly branched dendritic trees, and 4) dendritic arbor stereotypical shapes of different DA neurons facilitate morphometric statistical analyses. DA neuron activity modifies the output of a larval locomotion central pattern generator(14-16). The different DA neuron classes have distinct sensory modalities, and their activation elicits different behavioral responses(14,16-20). Furthermore different classes send axonal projections stereotypically into the Drosophila larval central nervous system in the ventral nerve cord (VNC)(21). These projections terminate with topographic representations of both DA neuron sensory modality and the position in the body wall of the dendritic field(7,22,23). Hence examination of DA axonal projections can be used to elucidate mechanisms underlying topographic mapping(7,22,23), as well as

  14. Cytoarchitecture and cortical connections of the posterior cingulate and adjacent somatosensory fields in the rhesus monkey. (United States)

    Morecraft, R J; Cipolloni, P B; Stilwell-Morecraft, K S; Gedney, M T; Pandya, D N


    The cytoarchitecture and connections of the caudal cingulate and medial somatosensory areas were investigated in the rhesus monkey. There is a stepwise laminar differentiation starting from retrosplenial area 30 towards the isocortical regions of the medial parietal cortex. This includes a gradational emphasis on supragranular laminar organization and general reduction of the infragranular neurons as one proceeds from area 30 toward the medial parietal regions, including areas 3, 1, 2, 5, 31, and the supplementary sensory area (SSA). This trend includes a progressive increase in layer IV neurons. Area 23c in the lower bank and transitional somatosensory area (TSA) in the upper bank of the cingulate sulcus appear as nodal points. From area 23c and TSA the architectonic progression can be traced in three directions: one culminates in areas 3a and 3b (core line), the second in areas 1, 2, and 5 (belt line), and the third in areas 31 and SSA (root line). These architectonic gradients are reflected in the connections of these regions. Thus, cingulate areas (30, 23a, and 23b) are connected with area 23c and TSA on the one hand and have widespread connections with parieto-temporal, frontal, and parahippocampal (limbic) regions on the other. Area 23c has connections with areas 30, 23a and b, and TSA as well as with medial somatosensory areas 3, 1, 2, 5, and SSA. Area 23c also has connections with parietotemporal, frontal, and limbic areas similar to areas 30, 23a, and 23b. Area TSA, like area 23c, has connections with areas 3, 1, 2, 5, and SSA. However, it has only limited connections with the parietotemporal and frontal regions and none with the parahippocampal gyrus. Medial area 3 is mainly connected to medial and dorsal sensory areas 3, 1, 2, 5, and SSA and to areas 4 and 6 as well as to supplementary (M2 or area 6m), rostral cingulate (M3 or areas 24c and d), and caudal cingulate (M4 or areas 23c and d) motor cortices. Thus, in parallel with the architectonic gradient

  15. A growing field: The regulation of axonal regeneration by Wnt signaling. (United States)

    Garcia, Armando L; Udeh, Adanna; Kalahasty, Karthik; Hackam, Abigail S


    The canonical Wnt/β-catenin pathway is a highly conserved signaling cascade that plays critical roles during embryogenesis. Wnt ligands regulate axonal extension, growth cone guidance and synaptogenesis throughout the developing central nervous system (CNS). Recently, studies in mammalian and fish model systems have demonstrated that Wnt/β-catenin signaling also promotes axonal regeneration in the adult optic nerve and spinal cord after injury, raising the possibility that Wnt could be developed as a therapeutic strategy. In this review, we summarize experimental evidence that reveals novel roles for Wnt signaling in the injured CNS, and discuss possible mechanisms by which Wnt ligands could overcome molecular barriers inhibiting axonal growth to promote regeneration. A central challenge in the neuroscience field is developing therapeutic strategies that induce robust axonal regeneration. Although adult axons have the capacity to respond to axonal guidance molecules after injury, there are several major obstacles for axonal growth, including extensive neuronal death, glial scars at the injury site, and lack of axonal guidance signals. Research in rodents demonstrated that activation of Wnt/β-catenin signaling in retinal neurons and radial glia induced neuronal survival and axonal growth, but that activation within reactive glia at the injury site promoted proliferation and glial scar formation. Studies in zebrafish spinal cord injury models confirm an axonal regenerative role for Wnt/β-catenin signaling and identified the cell types responsible. Additionally, in vitro and in vivo studies demonstrated that Wnt induces axonal and neurite growth through transcription-dependent effects of its central mediator β-catenin, potentially by inducing regeneration-promoting genes. Canonical Wnt signaling may also function through transcription-independent interactions of β-catenin with cytoskeletal elements, which could stabilize growing axons and control growth cone

  16. Effects of kainic acid lesions in lateral geniculate nucleus: activity dependence of retrograde axonal transport of fluorescent dyes. (United States)

    Woodward, W R; Coull, B M


    Kainic acid lesions in the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus of rats block the retrograde axonal transport of fluorescent dyes in corticogeniculate neurons without affecting the retrograde transport of D-aspartate or the orthograde transport of radiolabelled proteins in these neurons. This blocking of dye transport does not appear to be a consequence of kainic acid-induced damage to axon terminals in the geniculate since retinal ganglion cells are still able to transport dyes retrograde. A more likely explanation for these results is that fluorescent dye transport requires electrical activity in neurons, and elimination of the geniculate afferents to visual cortex reduces impulse traffic in cortical output fibers to a level below that required to support detectable dye transport. This interpretation is supported by the observation that kainic acid lesions also reduce retrograde transport of dyes in cortical neurons which project to the superior colliculus. Electrical stimulation in the subcortical white matter restores the transport of dye compounds in corticogeniculate neurons: evidence consistent with an activity-dependent mechanism of retrograde transport for these substances. These results provide evidence that axon terminals of retinal ganglion cells and corticogeniculate neurons survive in kainate-lesioned geniculates and are capable of normal neuronal function.

  17. Antiretroviral Therapy-Associated Acute Motor and Sensory Axonal Neuropathy

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    Kimberly N. Capers


    Full Text Available Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS has been reported in HIV-infected patients in association with the immune reconstitution syndrome whose symptoms can be mimicked by highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART-mediated mitochondrial toxicity. We report a case of a 17-year-old, HIV-infected patient on HAART with a normal CD4 count and undetectable viral load, presenting with acute lower extremity weakness associated with lactatemia. Electromyography/nerve conduction studies revealed absent sensory potentials and decreased compound muscle action potentials, consistent with a diagnosis of acute motor and sensory axonal neuropathy. Lactatemia resolved following cessation of HAART; however, neurological deficits minimally improved over several months in spite of immune modulatory therapy. This case highlights the potential association between HAART, mitochondrial toxicity and acute axonal neuropathies in HIV-infected patients, distinct from the immune reconstitution syndrome.

  18. Axonal transmission in the retina introduces a small dispersion of relative timing in the ganglion cell population response.

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    Günther Zeck

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Visual stimuli elicit action potentials in tens of different retinal ganglion cells. Each ganglion cell type responds with a different latency to a given stimulus, thus transforming the high-dimensional input into a temporal neural code. The timing of the first spikes between different retinal projection neurons cells may further change along axonal transmission. The purpose of this study is to investigate if intraretinal conduction velocity leads to a synchronization or dispersion of the population signal leaving the eye. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We 'imaged' the initiation and transmission of light-evoked action potentials along individual axons in the rabbit retina at micron-scale resolution using a high-density multi-transistor array. We measured unimodal conduction velocity distributions (1.3±0.3 m/sec, mean ± SD for axonal populations at all retinal eccentricities with the exception of the central part that contains myelinated axons. The velocity variance within each piece of retina is caused by ganglion cell types that show narrower and slightly different average velocity tuning. Ganglion cells of the same type respond with similar latency to spatially homogenous stimuli and conduct with similar velocity. For ganglion cells of different type intraretinal conduction velocity and response latency to flashed stimuli are negatively correlated, indicating that differences in first spike timing increase (up to 10 msec. Similarly, the analysis of pair-wise correlated activity in response to white-noise stimuli reveals that conduction velocity and response latency are negatively correlated. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: Intraretinal conduction does not change the relative spike timing between ganglion cells of the same type but increases spike timing differences among ganglion cells of different type. The fastest retinal ganglion cells therefore act as indicators of new stimuli for postsynaptic neurons. The intraretinal dispersion

  19. Craniocerebral trauma. Magnetic resonance imaging of diffuse axonal injury

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mallouhi, A.


    Acceleration-deceleration rotational brain trauma is a common cause of disability or death in young adults and often leads to a focal destruction of axons. The resulting pathology, axonal shear injury is referred to as diffuse axonal injury (DAI). The DAI-associated lesions occur bilaterally, are widely dispersed and have been observed in the surface and deep white matter. They are found near to and far from the impact site. When DAI is clinically suspected, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is the method of choice for further clarification, especially in patients where cranial computed tomography (CT) is inconspicuous. To investigate the presence of DAI after traumatic brain injury (TBI), a multimodal MRI approach is applied including the common structural and also functional imaging sequences. For structural MRI, fluid-attenuated inversion recovery (FLAIR) weighted and susceptibility contrast imaging (SWI) are the sequences mainly used. The SWI technique is extremely sensitive to blood breakdown products, which appear as small signal voids at three locations, at the gray-white interface, in the corpus callosum and in the brain stem. Functional MRI comprises a group of constantly developing techniques that have great potential in optimal evaluation of the white matter in patients after craniocerebral trauma. These imaging techniques allow the visualization of changes associated with shear injuries, such as functional impairment of axons and decreased blood flow and abnormal metabolic activity of the brain parts affected. The multimodal MRI approach in patients with DAI results in a more detailed and differentiated representation of the underlying pathophysiological changes of the injured nerve tracts and helps to improve the diagnostic and prognostic accuracy of MRI. When DAI is suspected multimodal MRI should be performed as soon as possible after craniocerebral injury. (orig.) [de

  20. Polyethylene glycol restores axonal conduction after corpus callosum transection

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    Ravinder Bamba


    Full Text Available Polyethylene glycol (PEG has been shown to restore axonal continuity after peripheral nerve transection in animal models. We hypothesized that PEG can also restore axonal continuity in the central nervous system. In this current experiment, coronal sectioning of the brains of Sprague-Dawley rats was performed after animal sacrifice. 3Brain high-resolution microelectrode arrays (MEA were used to measure mean firing rate (MFR and peak amplitude across the corpus callosum of the ex-vivo brain slices. The corpus callosum was subsequently transected and repeated measurements were performed. The cut ends of the corpus callosum were still apposite at this time. A PEG solution was applied to the injury site and repeated measurements were performed. MEA measurements showed that PEG was capable of restoring electrophysiology signaling after transection of central nerves. Before injury, the average MFRs at the ipsilateral, midline, and contralateral corpus callosum were 0.76, 0.66, and 0.65 spikes/second, respectively, and the average peak amplitudes were 69.79, 58.68, and 49.60 μV, respectively. After injury, the average MFRs were 0.71, 0.14, and 0.25 spikes/second, respectively and peak amplitudes were 52.11, 8.98, and 16.09 μV, respectively. After application of PEG, there were spikes in MFR and peak amplitude at the injury site and contralaterally. The average MFRs were 0.75, 0.55, and 0.47 spikes/second at the ipsilateral, midline, and contralateral corpus callosum, respectively and peak amplitudes were 59.44, 45.33, 40.02 μV, respectively. There were statistically differences in the average MFRs and peak amplitudes between the midline and non-midline corpus callosum groups (P < 0.01, P < 0.05. These findings suggest that PEG restores axonal conduction between severed central nerves, potentially representing axonal fusion.

  1. Polyethylene glycol restores axonal conduction after corpus callosum transection. (United States)

    Bamba, Ravinder; Riley, D Colton; Boyer, Richard B; Pollins, Alonda C; Shack, R Bruce; Thayer, Wesley P


    Polyethylene glycol (PEG) has been shown to restore axonal continuity after peripheral nerve transection in animal models. We hypothesized that PEG can also restore axonal continuity in the central nervous system. In this current experiment, coronal sectioning of the brains of Sprague-Dawley rats was performed after animal sacrifice. 3Brain high-resolution microelectrode arrays (MEA) were used to measure mean firing rate (MFR) and peak amplitude across the corpus callosum of the ex-vivo brain slices. The corpus callosum was subsequently transected and repeated measurements were performed. The cut ends of the corpus callosum were still apposite at this time. A PEG solution was applied to the injury site and repeated measurements were performed. MEA measurements showed that PEG was capable of restoring electrophysiology signaling after transection of central nerves. Before injury, the average MFRs at the ipsilateral, midline, and contralateral corpus callosum were 0.76, 0.66, and 0.65 spikes/second, respectively, and the average peak amplitudes were 69.79, 58.68, and 49.60 μV, respectively. After injury, the average MFRs were 0.71, 0.14, and 0.25 spikes/second, respectively and peak amplitudes were 52.11, 8.98, and 16.09 μV, respectively. After application of PEG, there were spikes in MFR and peak amplitude at the injury site and contralaterally. The average MFRs were 0.75, 0.55, and 0.47 spikes/second at the ipsilateral, midline, and contralateral corpus callosum, respectively and peak amplitudes were 59.44, 45.33, 40.02 μV, respectively. There were statistically differences in the average MFRs and peak amplitudes between the midline and non-midline corpus callosum groups ( P < 0.01, P < 0.05). These findings suggest that PEG restores axonal conduction between severed central nerves, potentially representing axonal fusion.

  2. Prediction of Functional Outcome in Axonal Guillain-Barre Syndrome. (United States)

    Sung, Eun Jung; Kim, Dae Yul; Chang, Min Cheol; Ko, Eun Jae


    To identify the factors that could predict the functional outcome in patients with the axonal type of Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS). Two hundred and two GBS patients admitted to our university hospital between 2003 and 2014 were reviewed retrospectively. We defined a good outcome as being "able to walk independently at 1 month after onset" and a poor outcome as being "unable to walk independently at 1 month after onset". We evaluated the factors that differed between the good and poor outcome groups. Twenty-four patients were classified into the acute motor axonal neuropathy type. There was a statistically significant difference between the good and poor outcome groups in terms of the GBS disability score at admission, and GBS disability score and Medical Research Council sum score at 1 month after admission. In an electrophysiologic analysis, the good outcome group showed greater amplitude of median, ulnar, deep peroneal, and posterior tibial nerve compound muscle action potentials (CMAP) and greater amplitude of median, ulnar, and superficial peroneal sensory nerve action potentials (SNAP) than the poor outcome group. A lower GBS disability score at admission, high amplitude of median, ulnar, deep peroneal, and posterior tibial CMAPs, and high amplitude of median, ulnar, and superficial peroneal SNAPs were associated with being able to walk at 1 month in patients with axonal GBS.

  3. Axonal Control of the Adult Neural Stem Cell Niche (United States)

    Tong, Cheuk Ka; Chen, Jiadong; Cebrián-Silla, Arantxa; Mirzadeh, Zaman; Obernier, Kirsten; Guinto, Cristina D.; Tecott, Laurence H.; García-Verdugo, Jose Manuel; Kriegstein, Arnold; Alvarez-Buylla, Arturo


    SUMMARY The ventricular-subventricular zone (V-SVZ) is an extensive germinal niche containing neural stem cells (NSC) in the walls of the lateral ventricles of the adult brain. How the adult brain’s neural activity influences the behavior of adult NSCs remains largely unknown. We show that serotonergic (5HT) axons originating from a small group of neurons in the raphe form an extensive plexus on most of the ventricular walls. Electron microscopy revealed intimate contacts between 5HT axons and NSCs (B1) or ependymal cells (E1) and these cells were labeled by a transsynaptic viral tracer injected into the raphe. B1 cells express the 5HT receptors 2C and 5A. Electrophysiology showed that activation of these receptors in B1 cells induced small inward currents. Intraventricular infusion of 5HT2C agonist or antagonist increased or decreased V-SVZ proliferation, respectively. These results indicate that supraependymal 5HT axons directly interact with NSCs to regulate neurogenesis via 5HT2C. PMID:24561083

  4. Vesicular glutamate release from central axons contributes to myelin damage. (United States)

    Doyle, Sean; Hansen, Daniel Bloch; Vella, Jasmine; Bond, Peter; Harper, Glenn; Zammit, Christian; Valentino, Mario; Fern, Robert


    The axon myelin sheath is prone to injury associated with N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA)-type glutamate receptor activation but the source of glutamate in this context is unknown. Myelin damage results in permanent action potential loss and severe functional deficit in the white matter of the CNS, for example in ischemic stroke. Here, we show that in rats and mice, ischemic conditions trigger activation of myelinic NMDA receptors incorporating GluN2C/D subunits following release of axonal vesicular glutamate into the peri-axonal space under the myelin sheath. Glial sources of glutamate such as reverse transport did not contribute significantly to this phenomenon. We demonstrate selective myelin uptake and retention of a GluN2C/D NMDA receptor negative allosteric modulator that shields myelin from ischemic injury. The findings potentially support a rational approach toward a low-impact prophylactic therapy to protect patients at risk of stroke and other forms of excitotoxic injury.

  5. Retinal glia promote dorsal root ganglion axon regeneration.

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    Barbara Lorber

    Full Text Available Axon regeneration in the adult central nervous system (CNS is limited by several factors including a lack of neurotrophic support. Recent studies have shown that glia from the adult rat CNS, specifically retinal astrocytes and Müller glia, can promote regeneration of retinal ganglion cell axons. In the present study we investigated whether retinal glia also exert a growth promoting effect outside the visual system. We found that retinal glial conditioned medium significantly enhanced neurite growth and branching of adult rat dorsal root ganglion neurons (DRG in culture. Furthermore, transplantation of retinal glia significantly enhanced regeneration of DRG axons past the dorsal root entry zone after root crush in adult rats. To identify the factors that mediate the growth promoting effects of retinal glia, mass spectrometric analysis of retinal glial conditioned medium was performed. Apolipoprotein E and secreted protein acidic and rich in cysteine (SPARC were found to be present in high abundance, a finding further confirmed by western blotting. Inhibition of Apolipoprotein E and SPARC significantly reduced the neuritogenic effects of retinal glial conditioned medium on DRG in culture, suggesting that Apolipoprotein E and SPARC are the major mediators of this regenerative response.

  6. Internalization and Axonal Transport of the HIV Glycoprotein gp120 (United States)

    Berth, Sarah; Caicedo, Hector Hugo; Sarma, Tulika; Morfini, Gerardo


    The HIV glycoprotein gp120, a neurotoxic HIV glycoprotein that is overproduced and shed by HIV-infected macrophages, is associated with neurological complications of HIV such as distal sensory polyneuropathy, but interactions of gp120 in the peripheral nervous system remain to be characterized. Here, we demonstrate internalization of extracellular gp120 in a manner partially independent of binding to its coreceptor CXCR4 by F11 neuroblastoma cells and cultured dorsal root ganglion neurons. Immunocytochemical and pharmacological experiments indicate that gp120 does not undergo trafficking through the endolysosomal pathway. Instead, gp120 is mainly internalized through lipid rafts in a cholesterol-dependent manner, with a minor fraction being internalized by fluid phase pinocytosis. Experiments using compartmentalized microfluidic chambers further indicate that, after internalization, endocytosed gp120 selectively undergoes retrograde but not anterograde axonal transport from axons to neuronal cell bodies. Collectively, these studies illuminate mechanisms of gp120 internalization and axonal transport in peripheral nervous system neurons, providing a novel framework for mechanisms for gp120 neurotoxicity. PMID:25636314

  7. Pathophysiologic insights into motor axonal function in Kennedy disease. (United States)

    Vucic, Steve; Kiernan, Matthew C


    Kennedy disease (KD), or spinobulbomuscular atrophy, is a slowly progressive inherited neurodegenerative disorder, marked by prominent fasciculations that typically precede the development of other symptoms. Although the genetic basis of KD relates to triplet (CAG) repeat expansion in the androgen receptor (AR) gene on the X chromosome, the mechanisms underlying the clinical presentation in KD have yet to be established. Consequently, the present study applied axonal excitability techniques to investigate the pathophysiologic mechanisms associated with KD. Peripheral nerve excitability studies were undertaken in 7 patients with KD with compound muscle action potentials (CMAP) recorded from the right abductor pollicis brevis. Strength-duration time constant (KD 0.54 +/- 0.03 msec; controls, 0.41 +/- 0.02 msec, p TEd [90 to 100 msec], 50.75 +/- 1.98%; controls TEd [90 to 100 msec], 45.67 +/- 0.67%, p < 0.01) and hyperpolarizing (KD TEh [90 to 100 msec], 128.5 +/- 6.9%; controls TEh [90 to 100 msec], 120.5 +/- 2.4%) conditioning pulses. Measurements of refractoriness, superexcitability, and late subexcitability changed appropriately for axonal hyperpolarization, perhaps reflecting the effects of increased ectopic activity. In total, the increase in the strength-duration time constant may be the primary event, occurring early in course of the disease, contributing to the development of axonal hyperexcitability in Kennedy disease, and thereby to the generation of fasciculations, a characteristic hallmark of the disease.

  8. In vivo imaging reveals mitophagy independence in the maintenance of axonal mitochondria during normal aging. (United States)

    Cao, Xu; Wang, Haiqiong; Wang, Zhao; Wang, Qingyao; Zhang, Shuang; Deng, Yuanping; Fang, Yanshan


    Mitophagy is thought to be a critical mitochondrial quality control mechanism in neurons and has been extensively studied in neurological disorders such as Parkinson's disease. However, little is known about how mitochondria are maintained in the lengthy neuronal axons in the context of physiological aging. Here, we utilized the unique Drosophila wing nerve model and in vivo imaging to rigorously profile changes in axonal mitochondria during aging. We revealed that mitochondria became fragmented and accumulated in aged axons. However, lack of Pink1 or Parkin did not lead to the accumulation of axonal mitochondria or axonal degeneration. Further, unlike in in vitro cultured neurons, we found that mitophagy rarely occurred in intact axons in vivo, even in aged animals. Furthermore, blocking overall mitophagy by knockdown of the core autophagy genes Atg12 or Atg17 had little effect on the turnover of axonal mitochondria or axonal integrity, suggesting that mitophagy is not required for axonal maintenance; this is regardless of whether the mitophagy is PINK1-Parkin dependent or independent. In contrast, downregulation of mitochondrial fission-fusion genes caused age-dependent axonal degeneration. Moreover, Opa1 expression in the fly head was significantly decreased with age, which may underlie the accumulation of fragmented mitochondria in aged axons. Finally, we showed that adult-onset, neuronal downregulation of the fission-fusion, but not mitophagy genes, dramatically accelerated features of aging. We propose that axonal mitochondria are maintained independently of mitophagy and that mitophagy-independent mechanisms such as fission-fusion may be central to the maintenance of axonal mitochondria and neural integrity during normal aging. © 2017 The Authors. Aging Cell published by the Anatomical Society and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  9. Sodium Channel β2 Subunits Prevent Action Potential Propagation Failures at Axonal Branch Points. (United States)

    Cho, In Ha; Panzera, Lauren C; Chin, Morven; Hoppa, Michael B


    Neurotransmitter release depends on voltage-gated Na + channels (Na v s) to propagate an action potential (AP) successfully from the axon hillock to a synaptic terminal. Unmyelinated sections of axon are very diverse structures encompassing branch points and numerous presynaptic terminals with undefined molecular partners of Na + channels. Using optical recordings of Ca 2+ and membrane voltage, we demonstrate here that Na + channel β2 subunits (Na v β2s) are required to prevent AP propagation failures across the axonal arborization of cultured rat hippocampal neurons (mixed male and female). When Na v β2 expression was reduced, we identified two specific phenotypes: (1) membrane excitability and AP-evoked Ca 2+ entry were impaired at synapses and (2) AP propagation was severely compromised with >40% of axonal branches no longer responding to AP-stimulation. We went on to show that a great deal of electrical signaling heterogeneity exists in AP waveforms across the axonal arborization independent of axon morphology. Therefore, Na v β2 is a critical regulator of axonal excitability and synaptic function in unmyelinated axons. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Voltage-gated Ca 2+ channels are fulcrums of neurotransmission that convert electrical inputs into chemical outputs in the form of vesicle fusion at synaptic terminals. However, the role of the electrical signal, the presynaptic action potential (AP), in modulating synaptic transmission is less clear. What is the fidelity of a propagating AP waveform in the axon and what molecules shape it throughout the axonal arborization? Our work identifies several new features of AP propagation in unmyelinated axons: (1) branches of a single axonal arborization have variable AP waveforms independent of morphology, (2) Na + channel β2 subunits modulate AP-evoked Ca 2+ -influx, and (3) β2 subunits maintain successful AP propagation across the axonal arbor. These findings are relevant to understanding the flow of excitation in the

  10. Dynamic Changes of Neuroskeletal Proteins in DRGs Underlie Impaired Axonal Maturation and Progressive Axonal Degeneration in Type 1 Diabetes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hideki Kamiya


    Full Text Available We investigated mechanisms underlying progressive axonal dysfunction and structural deficits in type 1 BB/Wor-rats from 1 week to 10 month diabetes duration. Motor and sensory conduction velocities were decreased after 4 and 6 weeks of diabetes and declined further over the remaining 9 months. Myelinated sural nerve fibers showed progressive deficits in fiber numbers and sizes. Structural deficits in unmyelinated axonal size were evident at 2 month and deficits in number were present at 4 mo. These changes were preceded by decreased availability of insulin, C-peptide and IGF-1 and decreased expression of neurofilaments and β-III-tubulin. Upregulation of phosphorylating stress kinases like Cdk5, p-GSK-3β, and p42/44 resulted in increased phosphorylation of neurofilaments. Increasing activity of p-GSK-3β correlated with increasing phosphorylation of NFH, whereas decreasing Cdk5 correlated with diminishing phosphorylation of NFM. The data suggest that impaired neurotrophic support results in sequentially impaired synthesis and postranslational modifications of neuroskeletal proteins, resulting in progressive deficits in axonal function, maturation and size.

  11. Relationship between somatosensory event-related potential N140 aberrations and hemispatial agnosia in patients with stroke: a preliminary study. (United States)

    Ueno, Tomoyuki; Hada, Yasushi; Shimizu, Yukiyo; Yamada, Thoru


    The somatosensory event-related potential N140 is thought to be related to selective attention. This study aimed to compare the somatosensory event-related potential N140 in healthy subjects to that in patients with stroke to determine whether N140 and attentiveness are associated in patients with stroke with or without hemispatial agnosia. Normal somatosensory event-related potential N140 values were determined using data from ten healthy subjects. Fifteen patients with stroke were divided into two groups based on the presence of hemispatial neglect. Somatosensory event-related potential N140 components were compared between the two groups. Stimulation of the affected limb in the hemispatial agnosia group resulted in significantly longer N140 latency at the contralateral vs. the ipsilateral electrode. This was the inverse of the relationship observed in normal subjects, with stimulation of the intact side in patients with hemispatial agnosia, and with stimulation of both the intact and affected sides in patients without agnosia. In the hemispatial agnosia group, the peak latency of N140 following stimulation of the affected side was significantly longer than it was following stimulation of the intact side and when compared to that in patients without agnosia. In addition, abnormal N140 peak latencies were observed at the Cz and ipsilateral electrodes in patients with hemispatial agnosia following stimulation of the intact side. These findings suggest that somatosensory event-related potential N140 is independently generated in each hemisphere and may reflect cognitive attention.

  12. Somatosensory sensitivity in patients with persistent idiopathic orofacial pain is associated with pain relief from hypnosis and relaxation. (United States)

    Baad-Hansen, Lene; Abrahamsen, Randi; Zachariae, Robert; List, Thomas; Svensson, Peter


    In a recent study hypnosis has been found to relieve persistent idiopathic orofacial pain. Quantitative sensory testing (QST) is widely used to evaluate somatosensory sensitivity, which has been suggested as a possible predictor of management outcome. The objectives of this study were to examine: (1) possible associations between clinical pain relief and baseline somatosensory sensitivity and (2) the effect of hypnosis management on QST parameters. Forty-one patients with persistent idiopathic orofacial pain completed this randomized controlled study in 1 of 2 groups: hypnosis (hypnotic analgesia suggestions) or control (relaxation). QST at 2 intraoral (pain region and contralateral mirror image region) and 3 extraoral (hand and both cheeks) sites was performed at baseline and after the hypnosis/control management, together with pressure pain thresholds and pressure pain tolerance thresholds determined bilaterally at the masseter and temporalis muscles, the temporomandibular joints, and the third finger. Degree of pain relief was negatively correlated with a summary statistic of baseline somatosensory sensitivity (summed z-score), that is, high baseline somatosensory sensitivity was associated with low pain relief (r=-0.372, P=0.020). Hypnosis had no major effect on any QST measure compared with relaxation (P>0.063). High pain sensitivity at baseline may predict poor pain management outcome. In addition, despite clear clinical pain relief, hypnosis did not significantly or specifically influence somatosensory sensitivity. Future studies should further explore QST measures as possible predictors of different management response in orofacial pain conditions.

  13. MEG event-related desynchronization and synchronization deficits during basic somatosensory processing in individuals with ADHD

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    Wang Frank


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD is a prevalent, complex disorder which is characterized by symptoms of inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. Convergent evidence from neurobiological studies of ADHD identifies dysfunction in fronto-striatal-cerebellar circuitry as the source of behavioural deficits. Recent studies have shown that regions governing basic sensory processing, such as the somatosensory cortex, show abnormalities in those with ADHD suggesting that these processes may also be compromised. Methods We used event-related magnetoencephalography (MEG to examine patterns of cortical rhythms in the primary (SI and secondary (SII somatosensory cortices in response to median nerve stimulation, in 9 adults with ADHD and 10 healthy controls. Stimuli were brief (0.2 ms non-painful electrical pulses presented to the median nerve in two counterbalanced conditions: unpredictable and predictable stimulus presentation. We measured changes in strength, synchronicity, and frequency of cortical rhythms. Results Healthy comparison group showed strong event-related desynchrony and synchrony in SI and SII. By contrast, those with ADHD showed significantly weaker event-related desynchrony and event-related synchrony in the alpha (8–12 Hz and beta (15–30 Hz bands, respectively. This was most striking during random presentation of median nerve stimulation. Adults with ADHD showed significantly shorter duration of beta rebound in both SI and SII except for when the onset of the stimulus event could be predicted. In this case, the rhythmicity of SI (but not SII in the ADHD group did not differ from that of controls. Conclusion Our findings suggest that somatosensory processing is altered in individuals with ADHD. MEG constitutes a promising approach to profiling patterns of neural activity during the processing of sensory input (e.g., detection of a tactile stimulus, stimulus predictability and facilitating our

  14. Optogenetic conditioning of paradigm and pattern discrimination in the rat somatosensory system.

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    Kenta Abe

    Full Text Available The rodent whisker-barrel cortical system is a model for studying somatosensory discrimination at high spatiotemporal precision. Here, we applied optogenetics to produce somatosensory inputs in the whisker area using one of transgenic rat lines, W-TChR2V4, which expresses channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2 in the mechanoreceptive nerve endings around whisker follicles. An awake W-TChR2V4 rat was head-fixed and irradiated by blue LED light on the whisker area with a paradigm conditioned with a reward. The Go task was designed so the rat is allowed to receive a reward, when it licked the nozzle within 5 s after photostimulation. The No-go task was designed so as the rat has to withhold licking for at least 5 s to obtain a reward after photostimulation. The Go-task conditioning was established within 1 hr of training with a reduction in the reaction time and increase of the success rate. To investigate the relationship between the spatiotemporal pattern of sensory inputs and the behavioral output, we designed a multi-optical fiber system that irradiates the whisker area at 9 spots in a 3×3 matrix. Although the Go-task conditioning was established using synchronous irradiation of 9 spots, the success rate was decreased with an increase of the reaction time for the asynchronous irradiation. After conditioning to the Go task, the rat responded to the blue LED flash irradiated on the barrel cortex, where many neurons also express ChR2, or photostimulation of the contralateral whisker area with a similar reaction time and success rate. Synchronous activation of the peripheral mechanoreceptive nerves is suggested to drive a neural circuit in the somatosensory cortex that efficiently couples with the decision. Our optogenetic system would enable the precise evaluation of the psychophysical values, such as the reaction time and success rate, to gain some insight into the brain mechanisms underlying conditioned behaviors.

  15. Impaired verbal memory in Parkinson disease: relationship to prefrontal dysfunction and somatosensory discrimination

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    Weniger Dorothea


    Full Text Available Abstract Objective To study the neurocognitive profile and its relationship to prefrontal dysfunction in non-demented Parkinson's disease (PD with deficient haptic perception. Methods Twelve right-handed patients with PD and 12 healthy control subjects underwent thorough neuropsychological testing including Rey complex figure, Rey auditory verbal and figural learning test, figural and verbal fluency, and Stroop test. Test scores reflecting significant differences between patients and healthy subjects were correlated with the individual expression coefficients of one principal component, obtained in a principal component analysis of an oxygen-15-labeled water PET study exploring somatosensory discrimination that differentiated between the two groups and involved prefrontal cortices. Results We found significantly decreased total scores for the verbal learning trials and verbal delayed free recall in PD patients compared with normal volunteers. Further analysis of these parameters using Spearman's ranking correlation showed a significantly negative correlation of deficient verbal recall with expression coefficients of the principal component whose image showed a subcortical-cortical network, including right dorsolateral-prefrontal cortex, in PD patients. Conclusion PD patients with disrupted right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex function and associated diminished somatosensory discrimination are impaired also in verbal memory functions. A negative correlation between delayed verbal free recall and PET activation in a network including the prefrontal cortices suggests that verbal cues and accordingly declarative memory processes may be operative in PD during activities that demand sustained attention such as somatosensory discrimination. Verbal cues may be compensatory in nature and help to non-specifically enhance focused attention in the presence of a functionally disrupted prefrontal cortex.

  16. The influence of vibrissal somatosensory processing in rat superior colliculus on prey capture. (United States)

    Favaro, P D N; Gouvêa, T S; de Oliveira, S R; Vautrelle, N; Redgrave, P; Comoli, E


    The lateral part of intermediate layer of superior colliculus (SCl) is a critical substrate for successful predation by rats. Hunting-evoked expression of the activity marker Fos is concentrated in SCl while prey capture in rats with NMDA lesions in SCl is impaired. Particularly affected are rapid orienting and stereotyped sequences of actions associated with predation of fast moving prey. Such deficits are consistent with the view that the deep layers of SC are important for sensory guidance of movement. Although much of the relevant evidence involves visual control of movement, less is known about movement guidance by somatosensory input from vibrissae. Indeed, our impression is that prey contact with whiskers is a likely stimulus to trigger predation. Moreover, SCl receives whisker and orofacial somatosensory information directly from trigeminal complex, and indirectly from zona incerta, parvicelular reticular formation and somatosensory barrel cortex. To better understand sensory guidance of predation by vibrissal information we investigated prey capture by rats after whisker removal and the role of superior colliculus (SC) by comparing Fos expression after hunting with and without whiskers. Rats were allowed to hunt cockroaches, after which their whiskers were removed. Two days later they were allowed to hunt cockroaches again. Without whiskers the rats were less able to retain the cockroaches after capture and less able to pursue them in the event of the cockroach escaping. The predatory behaviour of rats with re-grown whiskers returned to normal. In parallel, Fos expression in SCl induced by predation was significantly reduced in whiskerless animals. We conclude that whiskers contribute to the efficiency of rat prey capture and that the loss of vibrissal input to SCl, as reflected by reduced Fos expression, could play a critical role in predatory deficits of whiskerless rats. Copyright © 2011 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. The influence of visual perspective on the somatosensory steady-state response during pain observation

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    Dora Linsey Canizales


    Full Text Available The observation and evaluation of other's pain activate part of the neuronal network involved in the actual experience of pain, including those regions subserving the sensori-discriminative dimension of pain. This was largely interpreted as evidence showing that part of the painful experience can be shared vicariously. Here, we investigated the effect of the visual perspective from which other people’s pain is seen on the cortical response to continuous 25 Hz non-painful somatosensory stimulation (somatosensory steady-state response: SSSR. Based on the shared representation framework, we expected first-person visual perspective (1PP to yield more changes in cortical activity than third-person visual perspective (3PP during pain observation. Twenty healthy adults were instructed to rate a series of pseudo-dynamic pictures depicting hands in either painful or non-painful scenarios, presented either in 1PP (0°-45° angle or 3PP (180° angle, while changes in brain activity was measured with a 128-electode EEG system. The ratings demonstrated that the same scenarios were rated on average as more painful when observed from the 1PP than from the 3PP. As expected from previous works, the SSSR response was decreased after stimulus onset over the left caudal part of the parieto-central cortex, contralateral to the stimulation side. Moreover, the difference between the SSSR was of greater amplitude when the painful situations were presented from the 1PP compared to the 3PP. Together, these results suggest that a visuospatial congruence between the viewer and the observed scenarios is associated with both a higher subjective evaluation of pain and an increased modulation in the somatosensory representation of observed pain. These findings are discussed with regards to the potential role of visual perspective in pain communication and empathy.

  18. Brownian Optogenetic-Noise-Photostimulation on the Brain Amplifies Somatosensory-Evoked Field Potentials

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    Nayeli Huidobro


    Full Text Available Stochastic resonance (SR is an inherent and counter-intuitive mechanism of signal-to-noise ratio (SNR facilitation in biological systems associated with the application of an intermediate level of noise. As a first step to investigate in detail this phenomenon in the somatosensory system, here we examined whether the direct application of noisy light on pyramidal neurons from the mouse-barrel cortex expressing a light-gated channel channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2 can produce facilitation in somatosensory evoked field potentials. Using anesthetized Thy1-ChR2-YFP transgenic mice, and a new neural technology, that we called Brownian optogenetic-noise-photostimulation (BONP, we provide evidence for how BONP directly applied on the barrel cortex modulates the SNR in the amplitude of whisker-evoked field potentials (whisker-EFP. In all transgenic mice, we found that the SNR in the amplitude of whisker-EFP (at 30% of the maximal whisker-EFP exhibited an inverted U-like shape as a function of the BONP level. As a control, we also applied the same experimental paradigm, but in wild-type mice, as expected, we did not find any facilitation effects. Our results show that the application of an intermediate intensity of BONP on the barrel cortex of ChR2 transgenic mice amplifies the SNR of somatosensory whisker-EFPs. This result may be relevant to explain the improvements found in sensory detection in humans produced by the application of transcranial-random-noise-stimulation (tRNS on the scalp.

  19. Axonal Spheroid Accumulation In the Brainstem and Spinal Cord of A Young Angus Cow with Ataxia. (United States)

    Hanshaw, D M; Finnie, J W; Manavis, J; Kessell, A E


    An 18-month-old Angus cow presented with rapidly developing ataxia and subsequently died. The finding of large numbers of axonal spheroids in brainstem nuclei and spinal cord grey matter, bilaterally symmetrical in distribution, was consistent with a histopathological diagnosis of neuroaxonal dystrophy (NAD). Most of the axonal swellings were immunopositive to amyloid precursor protein, suggesting that interruption to axonal flow was important in their genesis. The topographical distribution of axonal spheroids in the brain and spinal cord in this bovine case closely resembled that found in the ovine neurodegenerative disorder termed NAD, in which axonal swellings are the major pathological feature. This appears to be the first reported case of this type of NAD in cattle. The aetiology of the spheroidal aggregations in this case was not determined. There was no evidence from the case history or neuropathology to indicate whether the axonal spheroids in this case involved an acquired or heritable aetiology. © 2015 Australian Veterinary Association.

  20. Role of calpains in the injury-induced dysfunction and degeneration of the mammalian axon. (United States)

    Ma, Marek


    Axonal injury and degeneration, whether primary or secondary, contribute to the morbidity and mortality seen in many acquired and inherited central nervous system (CNS) and peripheral nervous system (PNS) disorders, such as traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, cerebral ischemia, neurodegenerative diseases, and peripheral neuropathies. The calpain family of proteases has been mechanistically linked to the dysfunction and degeneration of axons. While the direct mechanisms by which transection, mechanical strain, ischemia, or complement activation trigger intra-axonal calpain activity are likely different, the downstream effects of unregulated calpain activity may be similar in seemingly disparate diseases. In this review, a brief examination of axonal structure is followed by a focused overview of the calpain family. Finally, the mechanisms by which calpains may disrupt the axonal cytoskeleton, transport, and specialized domains (axon initial segment, nodes, and terminals) are discussed. © 2013.

  1. A Combinatorial Approach to Induce Sensory Axon Regeneration into the Dorsal Root Avulsed Spinal Cord

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hoeber, Jan; Konig, Niclas; Trolle, Carl


    Spinal root injuries result in newly formed glial scar formation, which prevents regeneration of sensory axons causing permanent sensory loss. Previous studies showed that delivery of trophic factors or implantation of human neural progenitor cells supports sensory axon regeneration and partly......MIM), supported sensory axon regeneration. However, when hscNSPC and MesoMIM were combined, sensory axon regeneration failed. Morphological and tracing analysis showed that sensory axons grow through the newly established glial scar along “bridges” formed by migrating stem cells. Coimplantation of Meso...... their level of differentiation. Our data show that (1) the ability of stem cells to migrate into the spinal cord and organize cellular “bridges” in the newly formed interface is crucial for successful sensory axon regeneration, (2) trophic factor mimetics delivered by mesoporous silica may be a convenient...

  2. Visual cortical somatosensory and brainstem auditory evoked potentials following incidental irradiation of the rhombencephalon

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nightingale, S.; Schofield, I.S.; Dawes, P.J.D.K.


    Visual, cortical somatosensory and brainstem auditory evoked potentials were recorded before incidental irradiation of the rhombencephalon during radiotherapy in and around the middle ear, and at 11 weeks and eight months after completion of treatment. No patient experienced neurological symptoms during this period. No consistent changes in evoked potentials were found. The failure to demonstrate subclinical radiation-induced demyelination suggests either that the syndrome of early-delayed radiation rhombencephalopathy occurs in an idiosyncratic manner, or that any subclinical lesions are not detectable by serial evoked potential recordings. (author)

  3. Visual cortical somatosensory and brainstem auditory evoked potentials following incidental irradiation of the rhombencephalon

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    Nightingale, S. (Royal Victoria Infirmary, Newcastle upon Tyne (UK)); Schofield, I.S.; Dawes, P.J.D.K. (Newcastle upon Tyne Univ. (UK). Newcastle General Hospital)


    Visual, cortical somatosensory and brainstem auditory evoked potentials were recorded before incidental irradiation of the rhombencephalon during radiotherapy in and around the middle ear, and at 11 weeks and eight months after completion of treatment. No patient experienced neurological symptoms during this period. No consistent changes in evoked potentials were found. The failure to demonstrate subclinical radiation-induced demyelination suggests either that the syndrome of early-delayed radiation rhombencephalopathy occurs in an idiosyncratic manner, or that any subclinical lesions are not detectable by serial evoked potential recordings.

  4. Functional response of cerebral blood flow induced by somatosensory stimulation in rats with subarachnoid hemorrhage (United States)

    Li, Zhiguo; Huang, Qin; Liu, Peng; Li, Pengcheng; Ma, Lianting; Lu, Jinling


    Subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH) is often accompanied by cerebral vasospasm (CVS), which is the phenomenon of narrowing of large cerebral arteries, and then can produce delayed ischemic neurological deficit (DIND) such as lateralized sensory dysfunction. CVS was regarded as a major contributor to DIND in patients with SAH. However, therapy for preventing vasospasm after SAH to improve the outcomes may not work all the time. It is important to find answers to the relationship between CVS and DIND after SAH. How local cerebral blood flow (CBF) is regulated during functional activation after SAH still remains poorly understood, whereas, the regulation of CBF may play an important role in weakening the impact of CVS on cortex function. Therefore, it is worthwhile to evaluate the functional response of CBF in the activated cortex in an SAH animal model. Most evaluation of the effect of SAH is presently carried out by neurological behavioral scales. The functional imaging of cortical activation during sensory stimulation may help to reflect the function of the somatosensory cortex more locally than the behavioral scales do. We investigated the functional response of CBF in the somatosensory cortex induced by an electrical stimulation to contralateral forepaw via laser speckle imaging in a rat SAH model. Nineteen Sprague-Dawley rats from two groups (control group, n=10 and SAH group, n=9) were studied. SAH was induced in rats by double injection of autologous blood into the cisterna magna after CSF aspiration. The same surgical procedure was applied in the control group without CSF aspiration or blood injection. Significant CVS was found in the SAH group. Meanwhile, we observed a delayed peak of CBF response in rats with SAH compared with those in the control group, whereas no significant difference was found in magnitude, duration, and areas under curve of relative CBF changes between the two groups. The results suggest that the regulation function of local CBF during



    Steward, Oswald; Zheng, Binhai; Tessier-Lavigne, Marc; Hofstadter, Maura; Sharp, Kelli; Yee, Kelly Matsudaira


    Studies that have assessed regeneration of corticospinal tract (CST) axons in mice following genetic modifications or other treatments have tacitly assumed that there is little if any regeneration of CST axons in normal mice in the absence of some intervention. Here, we document a previously unrecognized capability for regenerative growth of CST axons in normal mice that involves growth past the lesion via the ventral column. Mice received dorsal hemisection injuries at thoracic level 6–7, wh...

  6. Defective Ca2+ channel clustering in axon terminals disturbs excitability in motoneurons in spinal muscular atrophy


    Jablonka, Sibylle; Beck, Marcus; Lechner, Barbara Dorothea; Mayer, Christine; Sendtner, Michael


    Proximal spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a motoneuron disease for which there is currently no effective treatment. In animal models of SMA, spinal motoneurons exhibit reduced axon elongation and growth cone size. These defects correlate with reduced β-actin messenger RNA and protein levels in distal axons. We show that survival motoneuron gene (Smn)–deficient motoneurons exhibit severe defects in clustering Cav2.2 channels in axonal growth cones. These defects also correlate with a reduced f...

  7. Oligodendroglial MCT1 and Metabolic Support of Axons in Multiple Sclerosis (United States)


    AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-14-1-0524 TITLE:Oligodendroglial MCT1 and Metabolic Support of Axons in Multiple Sclerosis PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Jeffrey D...29 Sep 2015 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Oligodendroglial MCT1 and Metabolic Support of Axons in Multiple Sclerosis 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER W81XWH-14-1-0524...MCT1 in injured oligodendroglia of multiple sclerosis patients contributes to axon neurodegeneration and that increasing MCT1 will be protective in the

  8. Acutely damaged axons are remyelinated in multiple sclerosis and experimental models of demyelination. (United States)

    Schultz, Verena; van der Meer, Franziska; Wrzos, Claudia; Scheidt, Uta; Bahn, Erik; Stadelmann, Christine; Brück, Wolfgang; Junker, Andreas


    Remyelination is in the center of new therapies for the treatment of multiple sclerosis to resolve and improve disease symptoms and protect axons from further damage. Although remyelination is considered beneficial in the long term, it is not known, whether this is also the case early in lesion formation. Additionally, the precise timing of acute axonal damage and remyelination has not been assessed so far. To shed light onto the interrelation between axons and the myelin sheath during de- and remyelination, we employed cuprizone- and focal lysolecithin-induced demyelination and performed time course experiments assessing the evolution of early and late stage remyelination and axonal damage. We observed damaged axons with signs of remyelination after cuprizone diet cessation and lysolecithin injection. Similar observations were made in early multiple sclerosis lesions. To assess the correlation of remyelination and axonal damage in multiple sclerosis lesions, we took advantage of a cohort of patients with early and late stage remyelinated lesions and assessed the number of APP- and SMI32- positive damaged axons and the density of SMI31-positive and silver impregnated preserved axons. Early de- and remyelinating lesions did not differ with respect to axonal density and axonal damage, but we observed a lower axonal density in late stage demyelinated multiple sclerosis lesions than in remyelinated multiple sclerosis lesions. Our findings suggest that remyelination may not only be protective over a long period of time, but may play an important role in the immediate axonal recuperation after a demyelinating insult. © 2017 The Authors GLIA Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  9. N-Propionylmannosamine stimulates axonal elongation in a murine model of sciatic nerve injury

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    Christian Witzel


    Full Text Available Increasing evidence indicates that sialic acid plays an important role during nerve regeneration. Sialic acids can be modified in vitro as well as in vivo using metabolic oligosaccharide engineering of the N-acyl side chain. N-Propionylmannosamine (ManNProp increases neurite outgrowth and accelerates the reestablishment of functional synapses in vitro. We investigated the influence of systemic ManNProp application using a specific in vivo mouse model. Using mice expressing axonal fluorescent proteins, we quantified the extension of regenerating axons, the number of regenerating axons, the number of arborising axons and the number of branches per axon 5 days after injury. Sciatic nerves from non-expressing mice were grafted into those expressing yellow fluorescent protein. We began a twice-daily intraperitoneal application of either peracetylated ManNProp (200 mg/kg or saline solution 5 days before injury, and continued it until nerve harvest (5 days after transection. ManNProp significantly increased the mean distance of axonal regeneration (2.49 mm vs. 1.53 mm; P < 0.005 and the number of arborizing axons (21% vs. 16% P = 0.008 5 days after sciatic nerve grafting. ManNProp did not affect the number of regenerating axons or the number of branches per arborizing axon. The biochemical glycoengineering of the N-acyl side chain of sialic acid might be a promising approach for improving peripheral nerve regeneration.

  10. The Molecular and Cellular Mechanisms of Axon Guidance in Mossy Fiber Sprouting

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    Ryuta Koyama


    Full Text Available The question of whether mossy fiber sprouting is epileptogenic has not been resolved; both sprouting-induced recurrent excitatory and inhibitory circuit hypotheses have been experimentally (but not fully supported. Therefore, whether mossy fiber sprouting is a potential therapeutic target for epilepsy remains under debate. Moreover, the axon guidance mechanisms of mossy fiber sprouting have attracted the interest of neuroscientists. Sprouting of mossy fibers exhibits several uncommon axonal growth features in the basically non-plastic adult brain. For example, robust branching of axonal collaterals arises from pre-existing primary mossy fiber axons. Understanding the branching mechanisms in adulthood may contribute to axonal regeneration therapies in neuroregenerative medicine in which robust axonal re-growth is essential. Additionally, because granule cells are produced throughout life in the neurogenic dentate gyrus, it is interesting to examine whether the mossy fibers of newly generated granule cells follow the pre-existing trajectories of sprouted mossy fibers in the epileptic brain. Understanding these axon guidance mechanisms may contribute to neuron transplantation therapies, for which the incorporation of transplanted neurons into pre-existing neural circuits is essential. Thus, clarifying the axon guidance mechanisms of mossy fiber sprouting could lead to an understanding of central nervous system (CNS network reorganization and plasticity. Here, we review the molecular and cellular mechanisms of axon guidance in mossy fiber sprouting by discussing mainly in vitro studies.

  11. NMNAT1 inhibits axon degeneration via blockade of SARM1-mediated NAD+ depletion (United States)

    Sasaki, Yo; Nakagawa, Takashi; Mao, Xianrong; DiAntonio, Aaron; Milbrandt, Jeffrey


    Overexpression of the NAD+ biosynthetic enzyme NMNAT1 leads to preservation of injured axons. While increased NAD+ or decreased NMN levels are thought to be critical to this process, the mechanism(s) of this axon protection remain obscure. Using steady-state and flux analysis of NAD+ metabolites in healthy and injured mouse dorsal root ganglion axons, we find that rather than altering NAD+ synthesis, NMNAT1 instead blocks the injury-induced, SARM1-dependent NAD+ consumption that is central to axon degeneration. DOI: PMID:27735788

  12. GSK3 controls axon growth via CLASP-mediated regulation of growth cone microtubules (United States)

    Hur, Eun-Mi; Saijilafu; Lee, Byoung Dae; Kim, Seong-Jin; Xu, Wen-Lin; Zhou, Feng-Quan


    Suppression of glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK3) activity in neurons yields pleiotropic outcomes, causing both axon growth promotion and inhibition. Previous studies have suggested that specific GSK3 substrates, such as adenomatous polyposis coli (APC) and collapsin response mediator protein 2 (CRMP2), support axon growth by regulating the stability of axonal microtubules (MTs), but the substrate(s) and mechanisms conveying axon growth inhibition remain elusive. Here we show that CLIP (cytoplasmic linker protein)-associated protein (CLASP), originally identified as a MT plus end-binding protein, displays both plus end-binding and lattice-binding activities in nerve growth cones, and reveal that the two MT-binding activities regulate axon growth in an opposing manner: The lattice-binding activity mediates axon growth inhibition induced by suppression of GSK3 activity via preventing MT protrusion into the growth cone periphery, whereas the plus end-binding property supports axon extension via stabilizing the growing ends of axonal MTs. We propose a model in which CLASP transduces GSK3 activity levels to differentially control axon growth by coordinating the stability and configuration of growth cone MTs. PMID:21937714

  13. Regulation of Axonal Midline Guidance by Prolyl 4-Hydroxylation in Caenorhabditis elegans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Torpe, Nanna; Pocock, Roger David John


    , little is known of its importance in the control of axon guidance. In a screen of prolyl 4-hydroxylase (P4H) mutants, we found that genetic removal of a specific P4H subunit, DPY-18, causes dramatic defects in C. elegans neuroanatomy. In dpy-18 mutant animals, the axons of specific ventral nerve cord......Neuronal wiring during development requires that the growth cones of axons and dendrites are correctly guided to their appropriate targets. As in other animals, axon growth cones in Caenorhabditis elegans integrate information in their extracellular environment via interactions among transiently...

  14. Biomarker evidence of axonal injury in neuroasymptomatic HIV-1 patients.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Jessen Krut

    Full Text Available Prevalence of neurocognitive impairment in HIV-1 infected patients is reported to be high. Whether this is a result of active HIV-related neurodegeneration is unclear. We examined axonal injury in HIV-1 patients by measuring the light subunit of neurofilament protein (NFL in CSF with a novel, sensitive method.With a cross-sectional design, CSF concentrations of neurofilament protein light (NFL (marker of neuronal injury, neopterin (intrathecal immunoactivation and CSF/Plasma albumin ratio (blood-brain barrier integrity were analyzed on CSF from 252 HIV-infected patients, subdivided into untreated neuroasymptomatics (n = 200, HIV-associated dementia (HAD (n = 14 and on combinations antiretroviral treatment (cART (n = 85, and healthy controls (n = 204. 46 HIV-infected patients were included in both treated and untreated groups, but sampled at different timepoints. Furthermore, 78 neuroasymptomatic patients were analyzed before and after treatment initiation.While HAD patients had the highest NFL concentrations, elevated CSF NFL was also found in 33% of untreated neuroasymptomatic patients, mainly in those with blood CD4+ cell counts below 250 cells/μL. CSF NFL concentrations in the untreated neuroasymptomatics and treated groups were equivalent to controls 18.5 and 3.9 years older, respectively. Neopterin correlated with NFL levels in untreated groups while the albumin ratio correlated with NFL in both untreated and treated groups.Increased CSF NFL indicates ongoing axonal injury in many neuroasymptomatic patients. Treatment decreases NFL, but treated patients retain higher levels than controls, indicating either continued virus-related injury or an aging-like effect of HIV infection. NFL correlates with neopterin and albumin ratio, suggesting an association between axonal injury, neuroinflammation and blood-brain barrier permeability. NFL appears to be a sensitive biomarker of subclinical and clinical brain injury in HIV and warrants further

  15. Axon-Schwann cell interaction in the squid nerve fibre. (United States)

    Villegas, J


    The electrical properties of Schwann cells and the effects of neuronal impulses on their membrane potential have been studied in the giant nerve fibre of the squid.1. The behaviour of the Schwann cell membrane to current injection into the cell was ohmic. No impulse-like responses were observed with displacements of 35 mV in the membrane potential. The resistance of the Schwann cell membrane was found to be approximately 10(3) Omega cm(2).2. A long-lasting hyperpolarization is observed in the Schwann cells following the conduction of impulse trains by the axon. Whereas the propagation of a single impulse had little effect, prolonged stimulation of the fibre at 250 impulses/sec was followed by a hyperpolarization of the Schwann cell that gradually declined over a period of several minutes.3. The prolonged effects of nerve impulse trains on the Schwann cell were similar to those produced by depolarizing current pulses applied to the axon by the voltage-clamp technique. Thus, a series of depolarizing pulses in the axon was followed by a long-lasting hyperpolarization of the Schwann cells. In contrast, the application of a series of hyperpolarizing 100 mV pulses at a frequency of 1/sec had no apparent effects.4. Changes in the external potassium concentration did not reproduce the long-lasting effects of nerve excitation.5. The hyperpolarizing effects of impulse trains were abolished by the incubation of the nerve fibre in a sea-water solution containing trypsin.6. These findings are discussed in relation to the possible mechanisms that might be responsible for the long-lasting hyperpolarizations of the Schwann cells.

  16. Excitability properties of motor axons in adults with cerebral palsy

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    Cliff S. Klein


    Full Text Available Cerebral Palsy (CP is a permanent disorder caused by a lesion to the developing brain that significantly impairs motor function. The neurophysiological mechanisms underlying motor impairment are not well understood. Specifically, few have addressed whether motoneuron or peripheral axon properties are altered in CP, even though disruption of descending inputs to the spinal cord may cause them to change. In the present study, we have compared nerve excitability properties in seven adults with CP and fourteen healthy controls using threshold tracking techniques by stimulating the median nerve at the wrist and recording the compound muscle action potential (CMAP over the abductor pollicis brevis. The excitability properties in the CP subjects were found to be abnormal. Early and late depolarizing and hyperpolarizing threshold electrotonus was significantly larger (i.e., fanning out, and resting current-threshold (I/V slope was smaller, in CP compared to control. In addition resting threshold and rheobase tended to be larger in CP. According to a modeling analysis of the data, an increase in leakage current under or through the myelin sheath, i.e., the Barrett-Barrett conductance (GBB, combined with a slight hyperpolarization of the resting membrane potential, best explained the group differences in excitability properties. There was a trend for those with greater impairment in gross motor function to have more abnormal axon properties. The findings indicate plasticity of motor axon properties far removed from the site of the lesion. We suspect that this plasticity is caused by disruption of descending inputs to the motoneurons at an early age around the time of their injury.

  17. Keeping in Touch With the Visual System: Spatial Alignment and Multisensory Integration of Visual-Somatosensory Inputs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeannette Rose Mahoney


    Full Text Available Correlated sensory inputs coursing along the individual sensory processing hierarchies arrive at multisensory convergence zones in cortex where inputs are processed in an integrative manner. The exact hierarchical level of multisensory convergence zones and the timing of their inputs are still under debate, although increasingly, evidence points to multisensory integration at very early sensory processing levels. The objective of the current study was to determine, both psychophysically and electrophysiologically, whether differential visual-somatosensory integration patterns exist for stimuli presented to the same versus opposite hemifields. Using high-density electrical mapping and complementary psychophysical data, we examined multisensory integrative processing for combinations of visual and somatosensory inputs presented to both left and right spatial locations. We assessed how early during sensory processing visual-somatosensory (VS interactions were seen in the event-related potential and whether spatial alignment of the visual and somatosensory elements resulted in differential integration effects. Reaction times to all VS pairings were significantly faster than those to the unisensory conditions, regardless of spatial alignment, pointing to engagement of integrative multisensory processing in all conditions. In support, electrophysiological results revealed significant differences between multisensory simultaneous VS and summed V+S responses, regardless of the spatial alignment of the constituent inputs. Nonetheless, multisensory effects were earlier in the aligned conditions, and were found to be particularly robust in the case of right-sided inputs (beginning at just 55ms. In contrast to previous work on audio-visual and audio-somatosensory inputs, the current work suggests a degree of spatial specificity to the earliest detectable multisensory integrative effects in response to visual-somatosensory pairings.

  18. Reduced resting state functional connectivity of the somatosensory cortex predicts psychopathological symptoms in women with bulimia nervosa

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    Luca eLavagnino


    Full Text Available BackgroundAlterations in the resting state functional connectivity (rs-FC of several brain networks have been demonstrated in eating disorders. However, very few studies are currently available on brain network dysfunctions in bulimia nervosa (BN. The somatosensory network is central in processing body-related stimuli and it may be altered in BN. The present study therefore aimed to investigate rs-FC in the somatosensory network in bulimic women. MethodsSixteen medication-free women with BN (age=23±5 years and 18 matched controls (age=23±3 years underwent a functional magnetic resonance resting state scan and assessment of eating disorder symptoms. Within-network and seed-based functional connectivity analyses were conducted to assess rs-FC within the somatosensory network and to other areas of the brain. ResultsBN patients showed a decreased resting state functional connectivity both within the somatosensory network (t=9.0, df=1, P=0.005 and with posterior cingulate cortex (PCC and two visual areas (the right middle occipital gyrus and the right cuneus(P=0.05 corrected for multiple comparison. The region in the right middle occipital gyrus is implicated in body processing and is known as extrastriate body area, or EBA. The rs-FC of the left paracentral lobule with the EBA correlated with psychopathology measures like bulimia (r=-0.4; P=0.02 and interoceptive awareness (r=-0.4; P=0.01. Analyses were conducted using age, BMI (body mass index and depressive symptoms as covariates. ConclusionsOur findings show a specific alteration of the rs-FC of the somatosensory cortex in BN patients, which correlates with eating disorder symptoms. The connectivity between the somatosensory cortex and the EBA might be related to dysfunctions in body image processing. The results should be considered preliminary due to the small sample size.

  19. Chronic stress and peripheral pain: Evidence for distinct, region-specific changes in visceral and somatosensory pain regulatory pathways. (United States)

    Zheng, Gen; Hong, Shuangsong; Hayes, John M; Wiley, John W


    Chronic stress alters the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis and enhances visceral and somatosensory pain perception. It is unresolved whether chronic stress has distinct effects on visceral and somatosensory pain regulatory pathways. Previous studies reported that stress-induced visceral hyperalgesia is associated with reciprocal alterations of endovanilloid and endocannabinoid pain pathways in DRG neurons innervating the pelvic viscera. In this study, we compared somatosensory and visceral hyperalgesia with respect to differential responses of peripheral pain regulatory pathways in a rat model of chronic, intermittent stress. We found that chronic stress induced reciprocal changes in the endocannabinoid 2-AG (increased) and endocannabinoid degradation enzymes COX-2 and FAAH (decreased), associated with down-regulation of CB1 and up-regulation of TRPV1 receptors in L6-S2 DRG but not L4-L5 DRG neurons. In contrast, sodium channels Nav1.7 and Nav1.8 were up-regulated in L4-L5 but not L6-S2 DRGs in stressed rats, which was reproduced in control DRGs treated with corticosterone in vitro. The reciprocal changes of CB1, TRPV1 and sodium channels were cell-specific and observed in the sub-population of nociceptive neurons. Behavioral assessment showed that visceral hyperalgesia persisted, whereas somatosensory hyperalgesia and enhanced expression of Nav1.7 and Nav1.8 sodium channels in L4-L5 DRGs normalized 3 days after completion of the stress phase. These data indicate that chronic stress induces visceral and somatosensory hyperalgesia that involves differential changes in endovanilloid and endocannabinoid pathways, and sodium channels in DRGs innervating the pelvic viscera and lower extremities. These results suggest that chronic stress-induced visceral and lower extremity somatosensory hyperalgesia can be treated selectively at different levels of the spinal cord. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Mechanisms of hyperpolarization in regenerated mature motor axons in cat

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Moldovan, Mihai; Krarup, Christian


    We found persistent abnormalities in the recovery of membrane excitability in long-term regenerated motor nerve fibres in the cat as indicated in the companion paper. These abnormalities could partly be explained by membrane hyperpolarization. To further investigate this possibility, we compared...... the changes in excitability in control nerves and long-term regenerated cat nerves (3-5 years after tibial nerve crush) during manoeuvres known to alter axonal membrane Na(+)-K(+) pump function: polarization, cooling to 20 degrees C, reperfusion after 10 min ischaemia, and up to 60 s of repetitive stimulation...

  1. Effects of white noise on event-related potentials in somatosensory Go/No-go paradigms. (United States)

    Ohbayashi, Wakana; Kakigi, Ryusuke; Nakata, Hiroki


    Exposure to auditory white noise has been shown to facilitate human cognitive function. This phenomenon is termed stochastic resonance, and a moderate amount of auditory noise has been suggested to benefit individuals in hypodopaminergic states. The present study investigated the effects of white noise on the N140 and P300 components of event-related potentials in somatosensory Go/No-go paradigms. A Go or No-go stimulus was presented to the second or fifth digit of the left hand, respectively, at the same probability. Participants performed somatosensory Go/No-go paradigms while hearing three different white noise levels (45, 55, and 65 dB conditions). The peak amplitudes of Go-P300 and No-go-P300 in ERP waveforms were significantly larger under 55 dB than 45 and 65 dB conditions. White noise did not affect the peak latency of N140 or P300, or the peak amplitude of N140. Behavioral data for the reaction time, SD of reaction time, and error rates showed the absence of an effect by white noise. This is the first event-related potential study to show that exposure to auditory white noise at 55 dB enhanced the amplitude of P300 during Go/No-go paradigms, reflecting changes in the neural activation of response execution and inhibition processing.

  2. Pheromones enhance somatosensory processing in newt brains through a vasotocin-dependent mechanism. (United States)

    Thompson, R R; Dickinson, P S; Rose, J D; Dakin, K A; Civiello, G M; Segerdahl, A; Bartlett, R


    We tested whether the sex pheromones that stimulate courtship clasping in male roughskin newts do so, at least in part, by amplifying the somatosensory signals that directly trigger the motor pattern associated with clasping and, if so, whether that amplification is dependent on endogenous vasotocin (VT). Female olfactory stimuli increased the number of action potentials recorded in the medulla of males in response to tactile stimulation of the cloaca, which triggers the clasp motor reflex, as well as to tactile stimulation of the snout and hindlimb. That enhancement was blocked by exposing the medulla to a V1a receptor antagonist before pheromone exposure. However, the antagonist did not affect medullary responses to tactile stimuli in the absence of pheromone exposure, suggesting that pheromones amplify somatosensory signals by inducing endogenous VT release. The ability of VT to couple sensory systems together in response to social stimulation could allow this peptide to induce variable behavioural outcomes, depending on the immediate context of the social interaction and thus on the nature of the associated stimuli that are amplified. If widespread in vertebrates, this mechanism could account for some of the behavioural variability associated with this and related peptides both within and across species.

  3. Water-filled training tubes increase core muscle activation and somatosensory control of balance during squat. (United States)

    Ditroilo, Massimiliano; O'Sullivan, Rory; Harnan, Brian; Crossey, Aislinn; Gillmor, Beth; Dardis, William; Grainger, Adam


    This study examined trunk muscle activation, balance and proprioception while squatting with a water-filled training tube (WT) and a traditional barbell (BB), with either closed (CE) or open eyes (OE). Eighteen male elite Gaelic footballers performed an isometric squat under the following conditions: BB-OE, BB-CE, WT-OE and WT-CE. The activity of rectus abdominis (RA), external oblique (EO) and multifidus (MF) was measured using electromyography, along with sway of the centre of pressure (CoP) using a force platform. Only the EO and the MF muscles exhibited an increased activity with WT (p velocity and range of the CoP increased significantly with WT (p velocity of the CoP was marginally reduced (d = 0.29). WT elicited a greater level core muscle activation and created a greater challenge to postural stability when compared to a BB. It appears that WT does not benefit from vision but emphasises the somatosensory control of balance. The use of WT may be beneficial in those sports requiring development of somatosensory/proprioceptive contribution to balance control.

  4. Corticospinal and Spinal Excitabilities Are Modulated during Motor Imagery Associated with Somatosensory Electrical Nerve Stimulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Traverse


    Full Text Available Motor imagery (MI, the mental simulation of an action, influences the cortical, corticospinal, and spinal levels, despite the lack of somatosensory afferent feedbacks. The aim of this study was to analyze the effect of MI associated with somatosensory stimulation (SS on the corticospinal and spinal excitabilities. We used transcranial magnetic stimulation and peripheral nerve stimulation to induce motor-evoked potentials (MEP and H-reflexes, respectively, in soleus and medialis gastrocnemius (MG muscles of the right leg. Twelve participants performed three tasks: (1 MI of submaximal plantar flexion, (2 SS at 65 Hz on the posterior tibial nerve with an intensity below the motor threshold, and (3 MI + SS. MEP and H-reflex amplitudes were recorded before, during, and after the tasks. Our results confirmed that MI increased corticospinal excitability in a time-specific manner. We found that MI+SS tended to potentiate MEP amplitude of the MG muscle compared to MI alone. We confirmed that SS decreased spinal excitability, and this decrease was partially compensated when combined with MI, especially for the MG muscle. The increase of CSE could be explained by a modulation of the spinal inhibitions induced by SS, depending on the amount of afferent feedbacks.

  5. Transcriptional profiling at whole population and single cell levels reveals somatosensory neuron molecular diversity (United States)

    Chiu, Isaac M; Barrett, Lee B; Williams, Erika K; Strochlic, David E; Lee, Seungkyu; Weyer, Andy D; Lou, Shan; Bryman, Gregory S; Roberson, David P; Ghasemlou, Nader; Piccoli, Cara; Ahat, Ezgi; Wang, Victor; Cobos, Enrique J; Stucky, Cheryl L; Ma, Qiufu; Liberles, Stephen D; Woolf, Clifford J


    The somatosensory nervous system is critical for the organism's ability to respond to mechanical, thermal, and nociceptive stimuli. Somatosensory neurons are functionally and anatomically diverse but their molecular profiles are not well-defined. Here, we used transcriptional profiling to analyze the detailed molecular signatures of dorsal root ganglion (DRG) sensory neurons. We used two mouse reporter lines and surface IB4 labeling to purify three major non-overlapping classes of neurons: 1) IB4+SNS-Cre/TdTomato+, 2) IB4−SNS-Cre/TdTomato+, and 3) Parv-Cre/TdTomato+ cells, encompassing the majority of nociceptive, pruriceptive, and proprioceptive neurons. These neurons displayed distinct expression patterns of ion channels, transcription factors, and GPCRs. Highly parallel qRT-PCR analysis of 334 single neurons selected by membership of the three populations demonstrated further diversity, with unbiased clustering analysis identifying six distinct subgroups. These data significantly increase our knowledge of the molecular identities of known DRG populations and uncover potentially novel subsets, revealing the complexity and diversity of those neurons underlying somatosensation. DOI: PMID:25525749

  6. "Lacking warmth": Alexithymia trait is related to warm-specific thermal somatosensory processing. (United States)

    Borhani, Khatereh; Làdavas, Elisabetta; Fotopoulou, Aikaterini; Haggard, Patrick


    Alexithymia is a personality trait involving deficits in emotional processing. The personality construct has been extensively validated, but the underlying neural and physiological systems remain controversial. One theory suggests that low-level somatosensory mechanisms act as somatic markers of emotion, underpinning cognitive and affective impairments in alexithymia. In two separate samples (total N=100), we used an established Quantitative Sensory Testing (QST) battery to probe multiple neurophysiological submodalities of somatosensation, and investigated their associations with the widely-used Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20). Experiment one found reduced sensitivity to warmth in people with higher alexithymia scores, compared to individuals with lower scores, without deficits in other somatosensory submodalities. Experiment two replicated this result in a new group of participants using a full-sample correlation between threshold for warm detection and TAS-20 scores. We discuss the relations between low-level thermoceptive function and cognitive processing of emotion. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Abnormal activation of the primary somatosensory cortex in spasmodic dysphonia: an fMRI study. (United States)

    Simonyan, Kristina; Ludlow, Christy L


    Spasmodic dysphonia (SD) is a task-specific focal dystonia of unknown pathophysiology, characterized by involuntary spasms in the laryngeal muscles during speaking. Our aim was to identify symptom-specific functional brain activation abnormalities in adductor spasmodic dysphonia (ADSD) and abductor spasmodic dysphonia (ABSD). Both SD groups showed increased activation extent in the primary sensorimotor cortex, insula, and superior temporal gyrus during symptomatic and asymptomatic tasks and decreased activation extent in the basal ganglia, thalamus, and cerebellum during asymptomatic tasks. Increased activation intensity in SD patients was found only in the primary somatosensory cortex during symptomatic voice production, which showed a tendency for correlation with ADSD symptoms. Both SD groups had lower correlation of activation intensities between the primary motor and sensory cortices and additional correlations between the basal ganglia, thalamus, and cerebellum during symptomatic and asymptomatic tasks. Compared with ADSD patients, ABSD patients had larger activation extent in the primary sensorimotor cortex and ventral thalamus during symptomatic task and in the inferior temporal cortex and cerebellum during symptomatic and asymptomatic voice production. The primary somatosensory cortex shows consistent abnormalities in activation extent, intensity, correlation with other brain regions, and symptom severity in SD patients and, therefore, may be involved in the pathophysiology of SD.

  8. Tibial nerve somatosensory evoked potentials in dogs with degenerative lumbosacral stenosis. (United States)

    Meij, Björn P; Suwankong, Niyada; van den Brom, Walter E; Venker-van Haagen, Anjop J; Hazewinkel, Herman A W


    To determine somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) in dogs with degenerative lumbosacral stenosis (DLS) and in healthy dogs. Clinical and experimental study. Dogs with DLS (n = 21) and 11 clinically normal dogs, age, and weight matched. Under anesthesia, the tibial nerve was stimulated at the caudolateral aspect of the stifle, and lumbar SEP (LSEP) were recorded percutaneously from S1 to T13 at each interspinous space. Cortical SEP (CSEP) were recorded from the scalp. LSEP were identified as the N1-P1 (latency 3-6 ms) and N2-P2 (latency 7-13 ms) wave complexes in the recordings of dogs with DLS and control dogs. Latency of N1-P1 increased and that of N2-P2 decreased as the active recording electrode was moved cranially from S1 to T13. Compared with controls, latencies were significantly delayed in DLS dogs: .8 ms for N1-P1 and 1.7 ms for the N2-P2 complex. CSEP were not different between groups. Surface needle recording of tibial nerve SEP can be used to monitor somatosensory nerve function of pelvic limbs in dogs. In dogs with DLS, the latency of LSEP, but not of CSEP, is prolonged compared with normal dogs. In dogs with lumbosacral pain from DLS, the cauda equina compression is sufficient to affect LSEP at the lumbar level.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James Joseph Wright


    Full Text Available Receptive fields of neurons in the forelimb region of areas 3b and 1 of primary somatosensory cortex, in cats and monkeys, were mapped using extracellular recordings obtained sequentially from nearly radial penetrations. Locations of the field centroids indicated the presence of a functional system, in which cortical homotypic representations of the limb surfaces are entwined in three-dimensional Mobius-strip-like patterns of synaptic connections. Boundaries of somatosensory receptive field in nested groups irregularly overlie the centroid order, and are interpreted as arising from the superposition of learned connections upon the embryonic order. Since the theory of embryonic synaptic self-organisation used to model these results was devised and earlier used to explain findings in primary visual cortex, the present findings suggest the theory may be of general application throughout cortex, and may reveal a modular functional synaptic system, which, only in some parts of the cortex, and in some species, is manifest as anatomical ordering into columns.

  10. BOLD responses in somatosensory cortices better reflect heat sensation than pain. (United States)

    Moulton, Eric A; Pendse, Gautam; Becerra, Lino R; Borsook, David


    The discovery of cortical networks that participate in pain processing has led to the common generalization that blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) responses in these areas indicate the processing of pain. Physical stimuli have fundamental properties that elicit sensations distinguishable from pain, such as heat. We hypothesized that pain intensity coding may reflect the intensity coding of heat sensation during the presentation of thermal stimuli during fMRI. Six 3T fMRI heat scans were collected for 16 healthy subjects, corresponding to perceptual levels of "low innocuous heat," "moderate innocuous heat," "high innocuous heat," "low painful heat," "moderate painful heat," and "high painful heat" delivered by a contact thermode to the face. Subjects rated pain and heat intensity separately after each scan. A general linear model analysis detected different patterns of brain activation for the different phases of the biphasic response to heat. During high painful heat, the early phase was associated with significant anterior insula and anterior cingulate cortex activation. Persistent responses were detected in the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and inferior parietal lobule. Only the late phase showed significant correlations with perceptual ratings. Significant heat intensity correlated activation was identified in contralateral primary and secondary somatosensory cortices, motor cortex, and superior temporal lobe. These areas were significantly more related to heat ratings than pain. These results indicate that heat intensity is encoded by the somatosensory cortices, and that pain evaluation may either arise from multimodal evaluative processes, or is a distributed process.

  11. Plexin A3 and turnout regulate motor axonal branch morphogenesis in zebrafish.

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    Rajiv Sainath

    Full Text Available During embryogenesis motor axons navigate to their target muscles, where individual motor axons develop complex branch morphologies. The mechanisms that control axonal branching morphogenesis have been studied intensively, yet it still remains unclear when branches begin to form or how branch locations are determined. Live cell imaging of individual zebrafish motor axons reveals that the first axonal branches are generated at the ventral extent of the myotome via bifurcation of the growth cone. Subsequent branches are generated by collateral branching restricted to their synaptic target field along the distal portion of the axon. This precisely timed and spatially restricted branching process is disrupted in turnout mutants we identified in a forward genetic screen. Molecular genetic mapping positioned the turnout mutation within a 300 kb region encompassing eight annotated genes, however sequence analysis of all eight open reading frames failed to unambiguously identify the turnout mutation. Chimeric analysis and single cell labeling reveal that turnout function is required cell non-autonomously for intraspinal motor axon guidance and peripheral branch formation. turnout mutant motor axons form the first branch on time via growth cone bifurcation, but unlike wild-type they form collateral branches precociously, when the growth cone is still navigating towards the ventral myotome. These precocious collateral branches emerge along the proximal region of the axon shaft typically devoid of branches, and they develop into stable, permanent branches. Furthermore, we find that null mutants of the guidance receptor plexin A3 display identical motor axon branching defects, and time lapse analysis reveals that precocious branch formation in turnout and plexin A3 mutants is due to increased stability of otherwise short-lived axonal protrusions. Thus, plexin A3 dependent intrinsic and turnout dependent extrinsic mechanisms suppress collateral branch

  12. Pancreatic cancer genomes reveal aberrations in axon guidance pathway genes. (United States)

    Biankin, Andrew V; Waddell, Nicola; Kassahn, Karin S; Gingras, Marie-Claude; Muthuswamy, Lakshmi B; Johns, Amber L; Miller, David K; Wilson, Peter J; Patch, Ann-Marie; Wu, Jianmin; Chang, David K; Cowley, Mark J; Gardiner, Brooke B; Song, Sarah; Harliwong, Ivon; Idrisoglu, Senel; Nourse, Craig; Nourbakhsh, Ehsan; Manning, Suzanne; Wani, Shivangi; Gongora, Milena; Pajic, Marina; Scarlett, Christopher J; Gill, Anthony J; Pinho, Andreia V; Rooman, Ilse; Anderson, Matthew; Holmes, Oliver; Leonard, Conrad; Taylor, Darrin; Wood, Scott; Xu, Qinying; Nones, Katia; Fink, J Lynn; Christ, Angelika; Bruxner, Tim; Cloonan, Nicole; Kolle, Gabriel; Newell, Felicity; Pinese, Mark; Mead, R Scott; Humphris, Jeremy L; Kaplan, Warren; Jones, Marc D; Colvin, Emily K; Nagrial, Adnan M; Humphrey, Emily S; Chou, Angela; Chin, Venessa T; Chantrill, Lorraine A; Mawson, Amanda; Samra, Jaswinder S; Kench, James G; Lovell, Jessica A; Daly, Roger J; Merrett, Neil D; Toon, Christopher; Epari, Krishna; Nguyen, Nam Q; Barbour, Andrew; Zeps, Nikolajs; Kakkar, Nipun; Zhao, Fengmei; Wu, Yuan Qing; Wang, Min; Muzny, Donna M; Fisher, William E; Brunicardi, F Charles; Hodges, Sally E; Reid, Jeffrey G; Drummond, Jennifer; Chang, Kyle; Han, Yi; Lewis, Lora R; Dinh, Huyen; Buhay, Christian J; Beck, Timothy; Timms, Lee; Sam, Michelle; Begley, Kimberly; Brown, Andrew; Pai, Deepa; Panchal, Ami; Buchner, Nicholas; De Borja, Richard; Denroche, Robert E; Yung, Christina K; Serra, Stefano; Onetto, Nicole; Mukhopadhyay, Debabrata; Tsao, Ming-Sound; Shaw, Patricia A; Petersen, Gloria M; Gallinger, Steven; Hruban, Ralph H; Maitra, Anirban; Iacobuzio-Donahue, Christine A; Schulick, Richard D; Wolfgang, Christopher L; Morgan, Richard A; Lawlor, Rita T; Capelli, Paola; Corbo, Vincenzo; Scardoni, Maria; Tortora, Giampaolo; Tempero, Margaret A; Mann, Karen M; Jenkins, Nancy A; Perez-Mancera, Pedro A; Adams, David J; Largaespada, David A; Wessels, Lodewyk F A; Rust, Alistair G; Stein, Lincoln D; Tuveson, David A; Copeland, Neal G; Musgrove, Elizabeth A; Scarpa, Aldo; Eshleman, James R; Hudson, Thomas J; Sutherland, Robert L; Wheeler, David A; Pearson, John V; McPherson, John D; Gibbs, Richard A; Grimmond, Sean M


    Pancreatic cancer is a highly lethal malignancy with few effective therapies. We performed exome sequencing and copy number analysis to define genomic aberrations in a prospectively accrued clinical cohort (n = 142) of early (stage I and II) sporadic pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma. Detailed analysis of 99 informative tumours identified substantial heterogeneity with 2,016 non-silent mutations and 1,628 copy-number variations. We define 16 significantly mutated genes, reaffirming known mutations (KRAS, TP53, CDKN2A, SMAD4, MLL3, TGFBR2, ARID1A and SF3B1), and uncover novel mutated genes including additional genes involved in chromatin modification (EPC1 and ARID2), DNA damage repair (ATM) and other mechanisms (ZIM2, MAP2K4, NALCN, SLC16A4 and MAGEA6). Integrative analysis with in vitro functional data and animal models provided supportive evidence for potential roles for these genetic aberrations in carcinogenesis. Pathway-based analysis of recurrently mutated genes recapitulated clustering in core signalling pathways in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma, and identified new mutated genes in each pathway. We also identified frequent and diverse somatic aberrations in genes described traditionally as embryonic regulators of axon guidance, particularly SLIT/ROBO signalling, which was also evident in murine Sleeping Beauty transposon-mediated somatic mutagenesis models of pancreatic cancer, providing further supportive evidence for the potential involvement of axon guidance genes in pancreatic carcinogenesis.

  13. Nociceptive DRG neurons express muscle lim protein upon axonal injury. (United States)

    Levin, Evgeny; Andreadaki, Anastasia; Gobrecht, Philipp; Bosse, Frank; Fischer, Dietmar


    Muscle lim protein (MLP) has long been regarded as a cytosolic and nuclear muscular protein. Here, we show that MLP is also expressed in a subpopulation of adult rat dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons in response to axonal injury, while the protein was not detectable in naïve cells. Detailed immunohistochemical analysis of L4/L5 DRG revealed ~3% of MLP-positive neurons 2 days after complete sciatic nerve crush and maximum ~10% after 4-14 days. Similarly, in mixed cultures from cervical, thoracic, lumbar and sacral DRG ~6% of neurons were MLP-positive after 2 days and maximal 17% after 3 days. In both, histological sections and cell cultures, the protein was detected in the cytosol and axons of small diameter cells, while the nucleus remained devoid. Moreover, the vast majority could not be assigned to any of the well characterized canonical DRG subpopulations at 7 days after nerve injury. However, further analysis in cell culture revealed that the largest population of MLP expressing cells originated from non-peptidergic IB4-positive nociceptive neurons, which lose their ability to bind the lectin upon axotomy. Thus, MLP is mostly expressed in a subset of axotomized nociceptive neurons and can be used as a novel marker for this population of cells.

  14. Profiling biomarkers of traumatic axonal injury: From mouse to man. (United States)

    Manivannan, Susruta; Makwana, Milan; Ahmed, Aminul Islam; Zaben, Malik


    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) poses a major public health problem on a global scale. Its burden results from high mortality and significant morbidity in survivors. This stems, in part, from an ongoing inadequacy in diagnostic and prognostic indicators despite significant technological advances. Traumatic axonal injury (TAI) is a key driver of the ongoing pathological process following TBI, causing chronic neurological deficits and disability. The science underpinning biomarkers of TAI has been a subject of many reviews in recent literature. However, in this review we provide a comprehensive account of biomarkers from animal models to clinical studies, bridging the gap between experimental science and clinical medicine. We have discussed pathogenesis, temporal kinetics, relationships to neuro-imaging, and, most importantly, clinical applicability in order to provide a holistic perspective of how this could improve TBI diagnosis and predict clinical outcome in a real-life setting. We conclude that early and reliable identification of axonal injury post-TBI with the help of body fluid biomarkers could enhance current care of TBI patients by (i) increasing speed and accuracy of diagnosis, (ii) providing invaluable prognostic information, (iii) allow efficient allocation of rehabilitation services, and (iv) provide potential therapeutic targets. The optimal model for assessing TAI is likely to involve multiple components, including several blood biomarkers and neuro-imaging modalities, at different time points. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  15. Bridging the gap: axonal fusion drives rapid functional recovery of the nervous system

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jean-Sébastien Teoh


    Full Text Available Injuries to the central or peripheral nervous system frequently cause long-term disabilities because damaged neurons are unable to efficiently self-repair. This inherent deficiency necessitates the need for new treatment options aimed at restoring lost function to patients. Compared to humans, a number of species possess far greater regenerative capabilities, and can therefore provide important insights into how our own nervous systems can be repaired. In particular, several invertebrate species have been shown to rapidly initiate regeneration post-injury, allowing separated axon segments to re-join. This process, known as axonal fusion, represents a highly efficient repair mechanism as a regrowing axon needs to only bridge the site of damage and fuse with its separated counterpart in order to re-establish its original structure. Our recent findings in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans have expanded the promise of axonal fusion by demonstrating that it can restore complete function to damaged neurons. Moreover, we revealed the importance of injury-induced changes in the composition of the axonal membrane for mediating axonal fusion, and discovered that the level of axonal fusion can be enhanced by promoting a neuron's intrinsic growth potential. A complete understanding of the molecular mechanisms controlling axonal fusion may permit similar approaches to be applied in a clinical setting.

  16. Noninvasive Detection and Differentiation of Axonal Injury/Loss, Demyelination, and Inflammation (United States)


    phosphorylated neurofilament primary antibody (SMI-31; 1:1000, Covance , US) to stain non-injured axons, and in rabbit anti-myelin basic protein (MBP) primary...neurofilament antibody (SMI- 31; 1:1000, Covance , US) to stain non-injured axons or with rabbit anti-myelin basic protein (MBP) antibody (1:1000, Sigma Inc

  17. MuSC is involved in regulating axonal fasciculation of mouse primary vestibular afferents. (United States)

    Kawauchi, Daisuke; Kobayashi, Hiroaki; Sekine-Aizawa, Yoko; Fujita, Shinobu C; Murakami, Fujio


    Regulation of axonal fasciculation plays an important role in the precise patterning of neural circuits. Selective fasciculation contributes to the sorting of different types of axons and prevents the misrouting of axons. However, axons must defasciculate once they reach the target area. To study the regulation of fasciculation, we focused on the primary vestibulo-cerebellar afferents (PVAs), which show a dramatic change from fasciculated axon bundles to defasciculated individual axons at their target region, the cerebellar primordium. To understand how fasciculation and defasciculation are regulated in this system, we investigated the roles of murine SC1-related protein (MuSC), a molecule belonging to the immunoglobulin superfamily. We show: (i) by comparing 1,1'-dioctadecyl-3,3,3',3'-tetramethylindocarbocyanine perchlorate (Dil) labelling and anti-MuSC immunohistochemistry, that downregulation of MuSC in PVAs during development is concomitant with the defasciculation of PVA axons; (ii) in a binding assay with cells expressing MuSC, that MuSC has cell-adhesive activity via a homophilic binding mechanism, and this activity is increased by multimerization; and (iii) that MuSC also displays neurite outgrowth-promoting activity in vestibular ganglion cultures. These findings suggest that MuSC is involved in axonal fasciculation and its downregulation may help to initiate the defasciculation of PVAs.

  18. Interaction between the soma and the axon terminal of horizontal cells in carp retina

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kamermans, M.; van Dijk, B. W.; Spekreijse, H.


    In teleost retina, the receptive fields of horizontal cell axon terminals have a larger space constant than the receptive fields of the horizontal cell somata. Generally this difference in receptive field size is attributed to the cell coupling which is assumed to be stronger in the horizontal axon

  19. Axon-somatic back-propagation in detailed models of spinal alpha motoneurons

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    Pietro eBalbi


    Full Text Available Antidromic action potentials following distal stimulation of motor axons occasionally fail to invade the soma of alpha motoneurons in spinal cord, due to their passing through regions of high non-uniformity.Morphologically detailed conductance-based models of cat spinal alpha motoneurons have been developed, with the aim to reproduce and clarify some aspects of the electrophysiological behavior of the antidromic axon-somatic spike propagation. Fourteen 3D morphologically detailed somata and dendrites of cat spinal alpha motoneurons have been imported from an open-access web-based database of neuronal morphologies,, and instantiated in neurocomputational models. An axon hillock, an axonal initial segment and a myelinated axon are added to each model.By sweeping the diameter of the axonal initial segment (AIS and the axon hillock, as well as the maximal conductances of sodium channels at the AIS and at the soma, the developed models are able to show the relationships between different geometric and electrophysiological configurations and the voltage attenuation of the antidromically travelling wave.In particular, a greater than usually admitted sodium conductance at AIS is necessary and sufficient to overcome the dramatic voltage attenuation occurring during antidromic spike propagation both at the myelinated axon-AIS and at the AIS-soma transitions.

  20. Structure and Function of an Actin-Based Filter in the Proximal Axon

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    Varuzhan Balasanyan


    Full Text Available Summary: The essential organization of microtubules within neurons has been described; however, less is known about how neuronal actin is arranged and the functional implications of its arrangement. Here, we describe, in live cells, an actin-based structure in the proximal axon that selectively prevents some proteins from entering the axon while allowing the passage of others. Concentrated patches of actin in proximal axons are present shortly after axonal specification in rat and zebrafish neurons imaged live, and they mark positions where anterogradely traveling vesicles carrying dendritic proteins halt and reverse. Patches colocalize with the ARP2/3 complex, and when ARP2/3-mediated nucleation is blocked, a dendritic protein mislocalizes to the axon. Patches are highly dynamic, with few persisting longer than 30 min. In neurons in culture and in vivo, actin appears to form a contiguous, semipermeable barrier, despite its apparently sparse distribution, preventing axonal localization of constitutively active myosin Va but not myosin VI. : Balasanyan et al. find dynamic patches of actin in proximal axons of live neurons, mature and newly differentiated, in culture and in vivo. Patches contribute to a filter that sequesters some proteins within the somatodendritic domain while allowing others to pass into the axon, leading to polarized localization of proteins.

  1. N-docosahexaenoylethanolamine regulates Hedgehog signaling and promotes growth of cortical axons

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    Giorgi Kharebava


    Full Text Available Axonogenesis, a process for the establishment of neuron connectivity, is central to brain function. The role of metabolites derived from docosahexaenoic acid (DHA, 22:6n-3 that is specifically enriched in the brain, has not been addressed in axon development. In this study, we tested if synaptamide (N-docosahexaenoylethanolamine, an endogenous metabolite of DHA, affects axon growth in cultured cortical neurons. We found that synaptamide increased the average axon length, inhibited GLI family zinc finger 1 (GLI1 transcription and sonic hedgehog (Shh target gene expression while inducing cAMP elevation. Similar effects were produced by cyclopamine, a regulator of the Shh pathway. Conversely, Shh antagonized elevation of cAMP and blocked synaptamide-mediated increase in axon length. Activation of Shh pathway by a smoothened (SMO agonist (SAG or overexpression of SMO did not inhibit axon growth mediated by synaptamide or cyclopamine. Instead, adenylate cyclase inhibitor SQ22536 abolished synaptamide-mediated axon growth indicating requirement of cAMP elevation for this process. Our findings establish that synaptamide promotes axon growth while Shh antagonizes synaptamide-mediated cAMP elevation and axon growth by a SMO-independent, non-canonical pathway.

  2. A high mitochondrial transport rate characterizes CNS neurons with high axonal regeneration capacity.

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    Romain Cartoni

    Full Text Available Improving axonal transport in the injured and diseased central nervous system has been proposed as a promising strategy to improve neuronal repair. However, the contribution of each cargo to the repair mechanism is unknown. DRG neurons globally increase axonal transport during regeneration. Because the transport of specific cargos after axonal insult has not been examined systematically in a model of enhanced regenerative capacity, it is unknown whether the transport of all cargos would be modulated equally in injured central nervous system neurons. Here, using a microfluidic culture system we compared neurons co-deleted for PTEN and SOCS3, an established model of high axonal regeneration capacity, to control neurons. We measured the axonal transport of three cargos (mitochondria, synaptic vesicles and late endosomes in regenerating axons and found that the transport of mitochondria, but not the other cargos, was increased in PTEN/SOCS3 co-deleted axons relative to controls. The results reported here suggest a pivotal role for this organelle during axonal regeneration.

  3. In silico modeling of axonal reconnection within a discrete fiber tract after spinal cord injury. (United States)

    Woolfe, Franco; Waxman, Stephen G; Hains, Bryan C


    Following spinal cord injury (SCI), descending axons that carry motor commands from the brain to the spinal cord are injured or transected, producing chronic motor dysfunction and paralysis. Reconnection of these axons is a major prerequisite for restoration of function after SCI. Thus far, only modest gains in motor function have been achieved experimentally or in the clinic after SCI, identifying the practical limitations of current treatment approaches. In this paper, we use an ordinary differential equation (ODE) to simulate the relative and synergistic contributions of several experimentally-established biological factors related to inhibition or promotion of axonal repair and restoration of function after SCI. The factors were mathematically modeled by the ODE. The results of our simulation show that in a model system, many factors influenced the achievability of axonal reconnection. Certain factors more strongly affected axonal reconnection in isolation, and some factors interacted in a synergistic fashion to produce further improvements in axonal reconnection. Our data suggest that mathematical modeling may be useful in evaluating the complex interactions of discrete therapeutic factors not possible in experimental preparations, and highlight the benefit of a combinatorial therapeutic approach focused on promoting axonal sprouting, attraction of cut ends, and removal of growth inhibition for achieving axonal reconnection. Predictions of this simulation may be of utility in guiding future experiments aimed at restoring function after SCI.

  4. A developmental timing switch promotes axon outgrowth independent of known guidance receptors.

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    Katherine Olsson-Carter


    Full Text Available To form functional neuronal connections, axon outgrowth and guidance must be tightly regulated across space as well as time. While a number of genes and pathways have been shown to control spatial features of axon development, very little is known about the in vivo mechanisms that direct the timing of axon initiation and elongation. The Caenorhabditis elegans hermaphrodite specific motor neurons (HSNs extend a single axon ventrally and then anteriorly during the L4 larval stage. Here we show the lin-4 microRNA promotes HSN axon initiation after cell cycle withdrawal. Axons fail to form in lin-4 mutants, while they grow prematurely in lin-4-overexpressing animals. lin-4 is required to down-regulate two inhibitors of HSN differentiation--the transcriptional regulator LIN-14 and the "stemness" factor LIN-28--and it likely does so through a cell-autonomous mechanism. This developmental switch depends neither on the UNC-40/DCC and SAX-3/Robo receptors nor on the direction of axon growth, demonstrating that it acts independently of ventral guidance signals to control the timing of HSN axon elongation.

  5. Modeling of the axon membrane skeleton structure and implications for its mechanical properties.

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    Yihao Zhang


    Full Text Available Super-resolution microscopy recently revealed that, unlike the soma and dendrites, the axon membrane skeleton is structured as a series of actin rings connected by spectrin filaments that are held under tension. Currently, the structure-function relationship of the axonal structure is unclear. Here, we used atomic force microscopy (AFM to show that the stiffness of the axon plasma membrane is significantly higher than the stiffnesses of dendrites and somata. To examine whether the structure of the axon plasma membrane determines its overall stiffness, we introduced a coarse-grain molecular dynamics model of the axon membrane skeleton that reproduces the structure identified by super-resolution microscopy. Our proposed computational model accurately simulates the median value of the Young's modulus of the axon plasma membrane determined by atomic force microscopy. It also predicts that because the spectrin filaments are under entropic tension, the thermal random motion of the voltage-gated sodium channels (Nav, which are bound to ankyrin particles, a critical axonal protein, is reduced compared to the thermal motion when spectrin filaments are held at equilibrium. Lastly, our model predicts that because spectrin filaments are under tension, any axonal injuries that lacerate spectrin filaments will likely lead to a permanent disruption of the membrane skeleton due to the inability of spectrin filaments to spontaneously form their initial under-tension configuration.

  6. Modeling of the axon membrane skeleton structure and implications for its mechanical properties. (United States)

    Zhang, Yihao; Abiraman, Krithika; Li, He; Pierce, David M; Tzingounis, Anastasios V; Lykotrafitis, George


    Super-resolution microscopy recently revealed that, unlike the soma and dendrites, the axon membrane skeleton is structured as a series of actin rings connected by spectrin filaments that are held under tension. Currently, the structure-function relationship of the axonal structure is unclear. Here, we used atomic force microscopy (AFM) to show that the stiffness of the axon plasma membrane is significantly higher than the stiffnesses of dendrites and somata. To examine whether the structure of the axon plasma membrane determines its overall stiffness, we introduced a coarse-grain molecular dynamics model of the axon membrane skeleton that reproduces the structure identified by super-resolution microscopy. Our proposed computational model accurately simulates the median value of the Young's modulus of the axon plasma membrane determined by atomic force microscopy. It also predicts that because the spectrin filaments are under entropic tension, the thermal random motion of the voltage-gated sodium channels (Nav), which are bound to ankyrin particles, a critical axonal protein, is reduced compared to the thermal motion when spectrin filaments are held at equilibrium. Lastly, our model predicts that because spectrin filaments are under tension, any axonal injuries that lacerate spectrin filaments will likely lead to a permanent disruption of the membrane skeleton due to the inability of spectrin filaments to spontaneously form their initial under-tension configuration.

  7. Blast overpressure induced axonal injury changes in rat brainstem and spinal cord

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    Srinivasu Kallakuri


    Full Text Available Introduction: Blast induced neurotrauma has been the signature wound in returning soldiers from the ongoing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Of importance is understanding the pathomechansim(s of blast overpressure (OP induced axonal injury. Although several recent animal models of blast injury indicate the neuronal and axonal injury in various brain regions, animal studies related to axonal injury in the white matter (WM tracts of cervical spinal cord are limited. Objective: The purpose of this study was to assess the extent of axonal injury in WM tracts of cervical spinal cord in male Sprague Dawley rats subjected to a single insult of blast OP. Materials and Methods: Sagittal brainstem sections and horizontal cervical spinal cord sections from blast and sham animals were stained by neurofilament light (NF-L chain and beta amyloid precursor protein immunocytochemistry and observed for axonal injury changes. Results: Observations from this preliminary study demonstrate axonal injury changes in the form of prominent swellings, retraction bulbs, and putative signs of membrane disruptions in the brainstem and cervical spinal cord WM tracts of rats subjected to blast OP. Conclusions: Prominent axonal injury changes following the blast OP exposure in brainstem and cervical spinal WM tracts underscores the need for careful evaluation of blast induced injury changes and associated symptoms. NF-L immunocytochemistry can be considered as an additional tool to assess the blast OP induced axonal injury.

  8. The Kinesin Adaptor Calsyntenin-1 Organizes Microtubule Polarity and Regulates Dynamics during Sensory Axon Arbor Development

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    Mary C. Halloran


    Full Text Available Axon growth and branching, and development of neuronal polarity are critically dependent on proper organization and dynamics of the microtubule (MT cytoskeleton. MTs must organize with correct polarity for delivery of diverse cargos to appropriate subcellular locations, yet the molecular mechanisms regulating MT polarity remain poorly understood. Moreover, how an actively branching axon reorganizes MTs to direct their plus ends distally at branch points is unknown. We used high-speed, in vivo imaging of polymerizing MT plus ends to characterize MT dynamics in developing sensory axon arbors in zebrafish embryos. We find that axonal MTs are highly dynamic throughout development, and that the peripheral and central axons of sensory neurons show differences in MT behaviors. Furthermore, we show that Calsyntenin-1 (Clstn-1, a kinesin adaptor required for sensory axon branching, also regulates MT polarity in developing axon arbors. In wild type neurons the vast majority of MTs are directed in the correct plus-end-distal orientation from early stages of development. Loss of Clstn-1 causes an increase in MTs polymerizing in the retrograde direction. These misoriented MTs most often are found near growth cones and branch points, suggesting Clstn-1 is particularly important for organizing MT polarity at these locations. Together, our results suggest that Clstn-1, in addition to regulating kinesin-mediated cargo transport, also organizes the underlying MT highway during axon arbor development.

  9. Integration of shallow gradients of Shh and Netrin-1 guides commissural axons. (United States)

    Sloan, Tyler F W; Qasaimeh, Mohammad A; Juncker, David; Yam, Patricia T; Charron, Frédéric


    During nervous system development, gradients of Sonic Hedgehog (Shh) and Netrin-1 attract growth cones of commissural axons toward the floor plate of the embryonic spinal cord. Mice defective for either Shh or Netrin-1 signaling have commissural axon guidance defects, suggesting that both Shh and Netrin-1 are required for correct axon guidance. However, how Shh and Netrin-1 collaborate to guide axons is not known. We first quantified the steepness of the Shh gradient in the spinal cord and found that it is mostly very shallow. We then developed an in vitro microfluidic guidance assay to simulate these shallow gradients. We found that axons of dissociated commissural neurons respond to steep but not shallow gradients of Shh or Netrin-1. However, when we presented axons with combined Shh and Netrin-1 gradients, they had heightened sensitivity to the guidance cues, turning in response to shallower gradients that were unable to guide axons when only one cue was present. Furthermore, these shallow gradients polarized growth cone Src-family kinase (SFK) activity only when Shh and Netrin-1 were combined, indicating that SFKs can integrate the two guidance cues. Together, our results indicate that Shh and Netrin-1 synergize to enable growth cones to sense shallow gradients in regions of the spinal cord where the steepness of a single guidance cue is insufficient to guide axons, and we identify a novel type of synergy that occurs when the steepness (and not the concentration) of a guidance cue is limiting.

  10. Brief electrical stimulation accelerates axon regeneration in the peripheral nervous system and promotes sensory axon regeneration in the central nervous system. (United States)

    Gordon, Tessa; Udina, Esther; Verge, Valerie M K; de Chaves, Elena I Posse


    Injured peripheral but not central nerves regenerate their axons but functional recovery is often poor. We demonstrate that prolonged periods of axon separation from targets and Schwann cell denervation eliminate regenerative capacity in the peripheral nervous system (PNS). A substantial delay of 4 weeks for all regenerating axons to cross a site of repair of sectioned nerve contributes to the long period of separation. Findings that 1h 20Hz bipolar electrical stimulation accelerates axon outgrowth across the repair site and the downstream reinnervation of denervated muscles in rats and human patients, provides a new and exciting method to improve functional recovery after nerve injuries. Drugs that elevate neuronal cAMP and activate PKA promote axon outgrowth in vivo and in vitro, mimicking the electrical stimulation effect. Rapid expression of neurotrophic factors and their receptors and then of growth associated proteins thereafter via cAMP, is the likely mechanism by which electrical stimulation accelerates axon outgrowth from the site of injury in both peripheral and central nervous systems.

  11. Co-occurrence of Pain Symptoms and Somatosensory Sensitivity in Burning Mouth Syndrome: A Systematic Review (United States)

    Moisset, Xavier; Calbacho, Valentina; Torres, Pilar; Gremeau-Richard, Christelle; Dallel, Radhouane


    Background Burning mouth syndrome (BMS) is a chronic and spontaneous oral pain with burning quality in the tongue or other oral mucosa without any identifiable oral lesion or laboratory finding. Pathogenesis and etiology of BMS are still unknown. However, BMS has been associated with other chronic pain syndromes including other idiopathic orofacial pain, the dynias group and the family of central sensitivity syndromes. This would imply that BMS shares common mechanisms with other cephalic and/or extracephalic chronic pains. The primary aim of this systematic review was to determine whether BMS is actually associated with other pain syndromes, and to analyze cephalic and extracephalic somatosensory sensitivity in these patients. Methods This report followed the PRISMA Statement. An electronic search was performed until January 2015 in PubMed, Cochrane library, Wiley and ScienceDirect. Searched terms included “burning mouth syndrome OR stomatodynia OR glossodynia OR burning tongue OR oral burning”. Studies were selected according to predefined inclusion criteria (report of an association between BMS and other pain(s) symptoms or of cutaneous cephalic and/or extracephalic quantitative sensory testing in BMS patients), and a descriptive analysis conducted. Results The search retrieved 1512 reports. Out of these, twelve articles met criteria for co-occurring pain symptoms and nine studies for quantitative sensory testing (QST) in BMS patients. The analysis reveals that in BMS patients co-occurring pain symptoms are rare, assessed by only 0.8% (12 of 1512) of the retrieved studies. BMS was associated with headaches, TMD, atypical facial pain, trigeminal neuralgia, post-herpetic facial pain, back pain, fibromyalgia, joint pain, abdominal pain, rectal pain or vulvodynia. However, the prevalence of pain symptoms in BMS patients is not different from that in the age-matched general population. QST studies reveal no or inconsistent evidence of abnormal cutaneous cephalic

  12. Co-occurrence of Pain Symptoms and Somatosensory Sensitivity in Burning Mouth Syndrome: A Systematic Review.

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    Xavier Moisset

    Full Text Available Burning mouth syndrome (BMS is a chronic and spontaneous oral pain with burning quality in the tongue or other oral mucosa without any identifiable oral lesion or laboratory finding. Pathogenesis and etiology of BMS are still unknown. However, BMS has been associated with other chronic pain syndromes including other idiopathic orofacial pain, the dynias group and the family of central sensitivity syndromes. This would imply that BMS shares common mechanisms with other cephalic and/or extracephalic chronic pains. The primary aim of this systematic review was to determine whether BMS is actually associated with other pain syndromes, and to analyze cephalic and extracephalic somatosensory sensitivity in these patients.This report followed the PRISMA Statement. An electronic search was performed until January 2015 in PubMed, Cochrane library, Wiley and ScienceDirect. Searched terms included "burning mouth syndrome OR stomatodynia OR glossodynia OR burning tongue OR oral burning". Studies were selected according to predefined inclusion criteria (report of an association between BMS and other pain(s symptoms or of cutaneous cephalic and/or extracephalic quantitative sensory testing in BMS patients, and a descriptive analysis conducted.The search retrieved 1512 reports. Out of these, twelve articles met criteria for co-occurring pain symptoms and nine studies for quantitative sensory testing (QST in BMS patients. The analysis reveals that in BMS patients co-occurring pain symptoms are rare, assessed by only 0.8% (12 of 1512 of the retrieved studies. BMS was associated with headaches, TMD, atypical facial pain, trigeminal neuralgia, post-herpetic facial pain, back pain, fibromyalgia, joint pain, abdominal pain, rectal pain or vulvodynia. However, the prevalence of pain symptoms in BMS patients is not different from that in the age-matched general population. QST studies reveal no or inconsistent evidence of abnormal cutaneous cephalic and extracephalic

  13. Psychotherapy With Somatosensory Stimulation for Endometriosis-Associated Pain: A Randomized Controlled Trial. (United States)

    Meissner, Karin; Schweizer-Arau, Annemarie; Limmer, Anna; Preibisch, Christine; Popovici, Roxana M; Lange, Isabel; de Oriol, Barbara; Beissner, Florian


    To evaluate whether psychotherapy with somatosensory stimulation is effective for the treatment of pain and quality of life in patients with endometriosis-related pain. Patients with a history of endometriosis and chronic pelvic pain were randomized to either psychotherapy with somatosensory stimulation (ie, different techniques of acupuncture point stimulation) or wait-list control for 3 months, after which all patients were treated. The primary outcome was brain connectivity assessed by functional magnetic resonance imaging. Prespecified secondary outcomes included pain on 11-point numeric rating scales (maximal and average global pain, pelvic pain, dyschezia, and dyspareunia) and physical and mental quality of life. A sample size of 30 per group was planned to compare outcomes in the treatment group and the wait-list control group. From March 2010 through March 2012, 67 women (mean age 35.6 years) were randomly allocated to intervention (n=35) or wait-list control (n=32). In comparison with wait-list controls, treated patients showed improvements after 3 months in maximal global pain (mean group difference -2.1, 95% confidence interval [CI] -3.4 to -0.8; P=.002), average global pain (-2.5, 95% CI -3.5 to -1.4; P<.001), pelvic pain (-1.4, 95% CI -2.7 to -0.1; P=.036), dyschezia (-3.5, 95% CI -5.8 to -1.3; P=.003), physical quality of life (3.8, 95% CI 0.5-7.1, P=.026), and mental quality of life (5.9, 95% CI 0.6-11.3; P=.031); dyspareunia improved nonsignificantly (-1.8, 95% CI -4.4 to 0.7; P=.150). Improvements in the intervention group remained stable at 6 and 24 months, and control patients showed comparable symptom relief after delayed intervention. Psychotherapy with somatosensory stimulation reduced global pain, pelvic pain, and dyschezia and improved quality of life in patients with endometriosis. After 6 and 24 months, when all patients were treated, both groups showed stable improvements.,, NCT01321840.

  14. Transfer of vesicles from Schwann cell to axon: a novel mechanism of communication in the peripheral nervous system

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    María Alejandra eLopez-Verrilli


    Full Text Available Schwann cells (SCs are the glial component of the peripheral nervous system, with essential roles during development and maintenance of axons, as well as during regenerative processes after nerve injury. SCs increase conduction velocities by myelinating axons, regulate synaptic activity at presynaptic nerve terminals and are a source of trophic factors to neurons. Thus, development and maintenance of peripheral nerves are crucially dependent on local signalling between SCs and axons. In addition to the classic mechanisms of intercellular signalling, the possibility of communication through secreted vesicles has been poorly explored to date. Interesting recent findings suggest the occurrence of lateral transfer mediated by vesicles from glial cells to axons that could have important roles in axonal growth and axonal regeneration. Here, we review the role of vesicular transfer from SCs to axons and propose the benefits of this means in supporting neuronal and axonal maintenance and regeneration after nerve damage.

  15. Predictive value of neurological examination for early cortical responses to somatosensory evoked potentials in patients with postanoxic coma

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bouwes, Aline; Binnekade, Jan M.; Verbaan, Bart W.; Zandbergen, Eveline G. J.; Koelman, Johannes H. T. M.; Weinstein, Henry C.; Hijdra, Albert; Horn, Janneke


    Bilateral absence of cortical N20 responses of median nerve somatosensory evoked potentials (SEP) predicts poor neurological outcome in postanoxic coma after cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). Although SEP is easy to perform and available in most hospitals, it is worthwhile to know how

  16. Deep-brain electrical microstimulation is an effective tool to explore functional characteristics of somatosensory neurons in the rat brain.

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    Han-Jia Jiang

    Full Text Available In neurophysiology researches, peripheral stimulation is used along with recordings of neural activities to study the processing of somatosensory signals in the brain. However, limited precision of peripheral stimulation makes it difficult to activate the neuron with millisecond resolution and study its functional properties in this scale. Also, tissue/receptor damage that could occur in some experiments often limits the amount of responses that can be recorded and hence reduces data reproducibility. To overcome these limitations, electrical microstimulation (ES of the brain could be used to directly and more precisely evoke neural responses. For this purpose, a deep-brain ES protocol for rat somatosensory relay neurons was developed in this study. Three male Wistar rats were used in the experiment. The ES was applied to the thalamic region responsive to hindpaw tactile stimulation (TS via a theta glass microelectrode. The resulting ES-evoked cortical responses showed action potentials and thalamocortical relay latencies very similar to those evoked by TS. This result shows that the developed deep-brain ES protocol is an effective tool to bypass peripheral tissue for in vivo functional analysis of specific types of somatosensory neurons. This protocol could be readily applied in researches of nociception and other somatosensory systems to allow more extensive exploration of the neural functional networks.

  17. Multimodal and widespread somatosensory abnormalities in persistent shoulder pain in the first 6 months efter stroke: An exploratory study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roosink, M.; van Dongen, Robert T.; Buitenweg, Jan R.; Renzenbrink, Gerbert J.; Geurts, Alexander C.; IJzerman, Maarten Joost


    Objective: To explore the role of multimodal and widespread somatosensory abnormalities in the development of persistent poststroke shoulder pain (pPSSP) in the first 6 months after stroke. Design: Prospective inception cohort study. Setting: Stroke units of 2 teaching hospitals. Participants: The

  18. Effects of Improvement on Selective Attention: Developing Appropriate Somatosensory Video Game Interventions for Institutional-Dwelling Elderly with Disabilities (United States)

    Chen, Shang-Ti; Chiang, I-Tsun; Liu, Eric Zhi-Feng; Chang, Maiga


    The purpose of this study was to develop appropriate somatosensory video game interventions on enhancing selective attention of institutional-dwelling elderly with disabilities. Fifty-eight participants aged 65[approximately]92 were recruited and divided into four groups, 4-week and 8-week experimental and two control groups, for evaluating the…

  19. Detection of optogenetic stimulation in somatosensory cortex by non-human primates--towards artificial tactile sensation. (United States)

    May, Travis; Ozden, Ilker; Brush, Benjamin; Borton, David; Wagner, Fabien; Agha, Naubahar; Sheinberg, David L; Nurmikko, Arto V


    Neuroprosthesis research aims to enable communication between the brain and external assistive devices while restoring lost functionality such as occurs from stroke, spinal cord injury or neurodegenerative diseases. In future closed-loop sensorimotor prostheses, one approach is to use neuromodulation as direct stimulus to the brain to compensate for a lost sensory function and help the brain to integrate relevant information for commanding external devices via, e.g. movement intention. Current neuromodulation techniques rely mainly of electrical stimulation. Here we focus specifically on the question of eliciting a biomimetically relevant sense of touch by direct stimulus of the somatosensory cortex by introducing optogenetic techniques as an alternative to electrical stimulation. We demonstrate that light activated opsins can be introduced to target neurons in the somatosensory cortex of non-human primates and be optically activated to create a reliably detected sensation which the animal learns to interpret as a tactile sensation localized within the hand. The accomplishment highlighted here shows how optical stimulation of a relatively small group of mostly excitatory somatosensory neurons in the nonhuman primate brain is sufficient for eliciting a useful sensation from data acquired by simultaneous electrophysiology and from behavioral metrics. In this first report to date on optically neuromodulated behavior in the somatosensory cortex of nonhuman primates we do not yet dissect the details of the sensation the animals exerience or contrast it to those evoked by electrical stimulation, issues of considerable future interest.

  20. Somatosensory BOLD fMRI reveals close link between salient blood pressure changes and the murine neuromatrix. (United States)

    Reimann, Henning Matthias; Todiras, Mihail; Hodge, Russ; Huelnhagen, Till; Millward, Jason Michael; Turner, Robert; Seeliger, Erdmann; Bader, Michael; Pohlmann, Andreas; Niendorf, Thoralf


    The neuromatrix, or "pain matrix", is a network of cortical brain areas which is activated by noxious as well as salient somatosensory stimulation. This has been studied in mice and humans using blood oxygenation level-dependent (BOLD) fMRI. Here we demonstrate that BOLD effects observed in the murine neuromatrix in response to salient somatosensory stimuli are prone to reflect mean arterial blood pressure (MABP) changes, rather than neural activity. We show that a standard electrostimulus typically used in murine somatosensory fMRI can induce substantial elevations in MABP. Equivalent drug-induced MABP changes - without somatosensory stimulation - evoked BOLD patterns in the neuromatrix strikingly similar to those evoked by electrostimulation. This constitutes a serious caveat for murine fMRI. The regional specificity of these BOLD patterns can be attributed to the co-localization of the neuromatrix with large draining veins. Based on these findings we propose a cardiovascular support mechanism whereby abrupt elevations in MABP provide additional energy supply to the neuromatrix and other essential brain areas in fight-or-flight situations. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Detection of optogenetic stimulation in somatosensory cortex by non-human primates--towards artificial tactile sensation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Travis May

    Full Text Available Neuroprosthesis research aims to enable communication between the brain and external assistive devices while restoring lost functionality such as occurs from stroke, spinal cord injury or neurodegenerative diseases. In future closed-loop sensorimotor prostheses, one approach is to use neuromodulation as direct stimulus to the brain to compensate for a lost sensory function and help the brain to integrate relevant information for commanding external devices via, e.g. movement intention. Current neuromodulation techniques rely mainly of electrical stimulation. Here we focus specifically on the question of eliciting a biomimetically relevant sense of touch by direct stimulus of the somatosensory cortex by introducing optogenetic techniques as an alternative to electrical stimulation. We demonstrate that light activated opsins can be introduced to target neurons in the somatosensory cortex of non-human primates and be optically activated to create a reliably detected sensation which the animal learns to interpret as a tactile sensation localized within the hand. The accomplishment highlighted here shows how optical stimulation of a relatively small group of mostly excitatory somatosensory neurons in the nonhuman primate brain is sufficient for eliciting a useful sensation from data acquired by simultaneous electrophysiology and from behavioral metrics. In this first report to date on optically neuromodulated behavior in the somatosensory cortex of nonhuman primates we do not yet dissect the details of the sensation the animals exerience or contrast it to those evoked by electrical stimulation, issues of considerable future interest.

  2. The disruption of mitochondrial axonal transport is an early event in neuroinflammation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Errea, Oihana; Moreno, Beatriz; Gonzalez-Franquesa, Alba


    in the cerebellar slice cultures was analyzed through high-resolution respirometry assays and quantification of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) production. RESULTS: Both conditions promoted an increase in the size and complexity of axonal mitochondria evident in electron microscopy images, suggesting a compensatory...... acutely impairs axonal mitochondrial transportation, which would promote an inappropriate delivery of energy throughout axons and, by this way, contribute to axonal damage. Thus, preserving axonal mitochondrial transport might represent a promising avenue to exploit as a therapeutic target...... response. Such compensation was reflected at the tissue level as increased respiratory activity of complexes I and IV and as a transient increase in ATP production in response to acute inflammation. Notably, time-lapse microscopy indicated that mitochondrial transport (mean velocity) was severely impaired...

  3. Golgi bypass for local delivery of axonal proteins, fact or fiction? (United States)

    González, Carolina; Cornejo, Víctor Hugo; Couve, Andrés


    Although translation of cytosolic proteins is well described in axons, much less is known about the synthesis, processing and trafficking of transmembrane and secreted proteins. A canonical rough endoplasmic reticulum or a stacked Golgi apparatus has not been detected in axons, generating doubts about the functionality of a local route. However, axons contain mRNAs for membrane and secreted proteins, translation factors, ribosomal components, smooth endoplasmic reticulum and post-endoplasmic reticulum elements that may contribute to local biosynthesis and plasma membrane delivery. Here we consider the evidence supporting a local secretory system in axons. We discuss exocytic elements and examples of autonomous axonal trafficking that impact development and maintenance. We also examine whether unconventional post-endoplasmic reticulum pathways may replace the canonical Golgi apparatus. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  4. Nuclear-Encoded Mitochondrial mRNAs: A Powerful Force in Axonal Growth and Development. (United States)

    Gale, Jenna R; Aschrafi, Armaz; Gioio, Anthony E; Kaplan, Barry B


    Axons, their growth cones, and synaptic nerve terminals are neuronal subcompartments that have high energetic needs. As such, they are enriched in mitochondria, which supply the ATP necessary to meet these demands. To date, a heterogeneous population of nuclear-encoded mitochondrial mRNAs has been identified in distal axons and growth cones. Accumulating evidence suggests that the local translation of these mRNAs is required for mitochondrial maintenance and axonal viability. Here, we review evidence that suggests a critical role for axonal translation of nuclear-encoded mitochondrial mRNAs in axonal growth and development. Additionally, we explore the role that site-specific translation at the mitochondria itself may play in this process. Finally, we briefly review the clinical implications of dysregulation of local translation of mitochondrial-related mRNAs in neurodevelopmental disorders.

  5. Intra-axonal Synthesis of SNAP25 Is Required for the Formation of Presynaptic Terminals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreia F.R. Batista


    Full Text Available Localized protein synthesis is a mechanism for developing axons to react acutely and in a spatially restricted manner to extracellular signals. As such, it is important for many aspects of axonal development, but its role in the formation of presynapses remains poorly understood. We found that the induced assembly of presynaptic terminals required local protein synthesis. Newly synthesized proteins were detectable at nascent presynapses within 15 min of inducing synapse formation in isolated axons. The transcript for the t-SNARE protein SNAP25, which is required for the fusion of synaptic vesicles with the plasma membrane, was recruited to presynaptic sites and locally translated. Inhibition of intra-axonal SNAP25 synthesis affected the clustering of SNAP25 and other presynaptic proteins and interfered with the release of synaptic vesicles from presynaptic sites. This study reveals a critical role for the axonal synthesis of SNAP25 in the assembly of presynaptic terminals.

  6. BmRobo2/3 is required for axon guidance in the silkworm Bombyx mori. (United States)

    Li, Xiao-Tong; Yu, Qi; Zhou, Qi-Sheng; Zhao, Xiao; Liu, Zhao-Yang; Cui, Wei-Zheng; Liu, Qing-Xin


    Axon guidance is critical for proper wiring of the nervous system. During the neural development, the axon guidance molecules play a key role and direct axons to choose the correct way to reach the target. Robo, as the receptor of axon guidance molecule Slit, is evolutionarily conserved from planarians to humans. However, the function of Robo in the silkworm, Bombyx mori, remained unknown. In this study, we cloned robo2/3 from B. mori (Bmrobo2/3), a homologue of robo2/3 in Tribolium castaneum. Moreover, BmRobo2/3 was localized in the neuropil, and RNAi-mediated knockdown of Bmrobo2/3 resulted in the longitudinal connectives forming closer to the midline. These data demonstrate that BmRobo2/3 is required for axon guidance in the silkworm. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Dorsal column sensory axons degenerate due to impaired microvascular perfusion after spinal cord injury in rats (United States)

    Muradov, Johongir M.; Ewan, Eric E.; Hagg, Theo


    The mechanisms contributing to axon loss after spinal cord injury (SCI) are largely unknown but may involve microvascular loss as we have previously suggested. Here, we used a mild contusive injury (120 kdyn IH impactor) at T9 in rats focusing on ascending primary sensory dorsal column axons, anterogradely traced from the sciatic nerves. The injury caused a rapid and progressive loss of dorsal column microvasculature and oligodendrocytes at the injury site and penumbra and a ~70% loss of the sensory axons, by 24 hours. To model the microvascular loss, focal ischemia of the T9 dorsal columns was achieved via phototoxic activation of intravenously injected rose bengal. This caused an ~53% loss of sensory axons and an ~80% loss of dorsal column oligodendrocytes by 24 hours. Axon loss correlated with the extent and axial length of microvessel and oligodendrocyte loss along the dorsal column. To determine if oligodendrocyte loss contributes to axon loss, the glial toxin ethidium bromide (EB; 0.3 µg/µl) was microinjected into the T9 dorsal columns, and resulted in an ~88% loss of dorsal column oligodendrocytes and an ~56% loss of sensory axons after 72 hours. EB also caused an ~72% loss of microvessels. Lower concentrations of EB resulted in less axon, oligodendrocyte and microvessel loss, which were highly correlated (R2 = 0.81). These data suggest that focal spinal cord ischemia causes both oligodendrocyte and axon degeneration, which are perhaps linked. Importantly, they highlight the need of limiting the penumbral spread of ischemia and oligodendrocyte loss after SCI in order to protect axons. PMID:23978615

  8. Delineating neurotrophin-3 dependent signaling pathways underlying sympathetic axon growth along intermediate targets. (United States)

    Keeler, Austin B; Suo, Dong; Park, Juyeon; Deppmann, Christopher D


    Postganglionic sympathetic neurons detect vascular derived neurotrophin 3 (NT3) via the axonally expressed receptor tyrosine kinase, TrkA, to promote chemo-attraction along intermediate targets. Once axons arrive to their final target, a structurally related neurotrophic factor, nerve growth factor (NGF), also acts through TrkA to promote final target innervation. Does TrkA signal differently at these different locales? We previously found that Coronin-1 is upregulated in sympathetic neurons upon exposure to NGF, thereby endowing the NGF-TrkA complex with new signaling capabilities (i.e. calcium signaling), which dampens axon growth and branching. Based on the notion that axons do not express functional levels of Coronin-1 prior to final target innervation, we developed an in vitro model for axon growth and branching along intermediate targets using Coro1a -/- neurons grown in NT3. We found that, similar to NGF-TrkA, NT3-TrkA is capable of inducing MAPK and PI3K in the presence or absence of Coronin-1. However, unlike NGF, NT3 does not induce calcium release from intracellular stores. Using a combination of pharmacology, knockout neurons and in vitro functional assays, we suggest that the NT3-TrkA complex uses Ras/MAPK and/or PI3K-AKT signaling to induce axon growth and inhibit axon branching along intermediate targets. However, in the presence of Coronin-1, these signaling pathways lose their ability to impact NT3 dependent axon growth or branching. This is consistent with a role for Coronin-1 as a molecular switch for axon behavior and suggests that Coronin-1 suppresses NT3 dependent axon behavior. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Attentional Modulation of Somatosensory Processing During the Anticipation of Movements Accompanying Pain: An Event-Related Potential Study. (United States)

    Clauwaert, Amanda; Torta, Diana M; Danneels, Lieven; Van Damme, Stefaan


    Attending to pain-relevant information is crucial to protect us from physical harm. Behavioral studies have already suggested that during anticipation of pain somatosensory input at the body location under threat is prioritized. However, research using daily life cues for pain, especially movements, is lacking. Furthermore, to our knowledge, no studies have investigated cortical processing associated with somatosensory processing during threatened movements. The current study aims to investigate whether movements accompanying pain automatically steer attention toward somatosensory input at the threatened location, affecting somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs). Healthy volunteers were cued to perform movements with the left or the right hand, and one of these movements could be accompanied by pain on the moving hand. During movement anticipation, a task-irrelevant tactile stimulus was presented to the threatened or pain-free hand to evoke SEPs. During anticipation of movements accompanying pain, the N120 component was increased for tactile stimuli at the threatened relative to the hand without pain. Moreover, the P200 SEP was enhanced during anticipation of movements accompanying pain relative to movements without pain, irrespective of which hand was stimulated. These findings show that the anticipation of pain-accompanying movements may affect the processing of somatosensory input, and that this is likely to be driven by attentional processes. This study shows that the anticipation of pain-related movements automatically biases attention toward stimuli at a pain-related location, measured according to SEPs. The present study provides important new insights in the interplay between pain and attention, and its consequences at the cortical level. Copyright © 2017 The American Pain Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Early impairment of somatosensory evoked potentials in very young children with achondroplasia with foramen magnum stenosis. (United States)

    Fornarino, Stefania; Rossi, Daniela Paola; Severino, Mariasavina; Pistorio, Angela; Allegri, Anna Elsa Maria; Martelli, Simona; Doria Lamba, Laura; Lanteri, Paola


    To evaluate the contribution of somatosensory evoked potentials after median nerve (MN-SEPs) and posterior tibial nerve (PTN-SEPs) stimulation in functional assessment of cervical and lumbar spinal stenosis in children with achondroplasia. We reviewed MN-SEPs, PTN-SEPs, and spinal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) examinations performed in 58 patients with achondroplasia (25 males, 33 females; age range 21d-16y 10mo; mean age 4y 3mo [SD 4y 1mo]). Patients were subdivided into four age categories: achondroplasia, the cortical component of PTN-SEPs is more sensitive than the cortical component and central conduction time of MN-SEPs in detection of cervical spinal cord compression at early ages. © 2016 Mac Keith Press.

  11. Effect of epidural 0.25% bupivacaine on somatosensory evoked potentials to dermatomal stimulation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lund, C; Hansen, O B; Kehlet, H


    The effect of lumbar epidural analgesia with similar volumes (about 25 ml) of 0.25% and 0.5% bupivacaine on early (less than 0.5 seconds) somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) to electrical stimulation of the S1, L1, and T10 dermatomes was examined in two groups of ten patients. Level of sensory...... analgesia to pinprick was T5.7 +/- 0.8 and T6.4 +/- 0.7 in the 0.25% and 0.5% bupivacaine group, respectively. Motor blockade was more pronounced in the 0.5% bupivacaine group (p less than 0.05). Despite similar analgesia to pinprick, SEPs were more reduced during 0.5% bupivacaine than during 0...

  12. Direct electrical stimulation of human cortex evokes high gamma activity that predicts conscious somatosensory perception (United States)

    Muller, Leah; Rolston, John D.; Fox, Neal P.; Knowlton, Robert; Rao, Vikram R.; Chang, Edward F.


    Objective. Direct electrical stimulation (DES) is a clinical gold standard for human brain mapping and readily evokes conscious percepts, yet the neurophysiological changes underlying these percepts are not well understood. Approach. To determine the neural correlates of DES, we stimulated the somatosensory cortex of ten human participants at frequency-amplitude combinations that both elicited and failed to elicit conscious percepts, meanwhile recording neural activity directly surrounding the stimulation site. We then compared the neural activity of perceived trials to that of non-perceived trials. Main results. We found that stimulation evokes distributed high gamma activity, which correlates with conscious perception better than stimulation parameters themselves. Significance. Our findings suggest that high gamma activity is a reliable biomarker for perception evoked by both natural and electrical stimuli.

  13. Abnormalities of somatosensory perception in patients with painful osteoarthritis normalize following successful treatment. (United States)

    Kosek, E; Ordeberg, G


    To investigate the effect of chronic nociceptive pain on somatosensory perception, quantitative sensibility testing was performed in the most painful area and the homologous contralateral side in 14 patients with painful osteoarthritis of the hip. Twelve patients were reassessed in a painfree state 6-14 months following surgery. Von Frey filaments were used to test low-threshold mechanoreceptive function. Pressure pain sensitivity was assessed with a pressure algometer and thermal sensitivity with a Thermotest. Sex- and age-matched controls were examined in the corresponding areas at similar time intervals. There was no statistically significant difference between groups in the sensitivity to light touch and innocuous cold in either session. Compared to controls, patients had increased sensitivity to pressure pain in the most painful area (p pain (ppain (p = 0.054) before surgery. In the painful area, patients' sensitivity to pressure pain decreased (p pain. Copyright 2000 European Federation of Chapters of the International Association for the Study of Pain.

  14. Reversible Axonal Dystrophy by Calcium Modulation in Frataxin-Deficient Sensory Neurons of YG8R Mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Belén Mollá


    Full Text Available Friedreich’s ataxia (FRDA is a peripheral neuropathy involving a loss of proprioceptive sensory neurons. Studies of biopsies from patients suggest that axonal dysfunction precedes the death of proprioceptive neurons in a dying-back process. We observed that the deficiency of frataxin in sensory neurons of dorsal root ganglia (DRG of the YG8R mouse model causes the formation of axonal spheroids which retain dysfunctional mitochondria, shows alterations in the cytoskeleton and it produces impairment of axonal transport and autophagic flux. The homogenous distribution of axonal spheroids along the neurites supports the existence of continues focal damages. This lead us to propose for FRDA a model of distal axonopathy based on axonal focal damages. In addition, we observed the involvement of oxidative stress and dyshomeostasis of calcium in axonal spheroid formation generating axonal injury as a primary cause of pathophysiology. Axonal spheroids may be a consequence of calcium imbalance, thus we propose the quenching or removal extracellular Ca2+ to prevent spheroids formation. In our neuronal model, treatments with BAPTA and o-phenanthroline reverted the axonal dystrophy and the mitochondrial dysmorphic parameters. These results support the hypothesis that axonal pathology is reversible in FRDA by pharmacological manipulation of intracellular Ca2+ with Ca2+ chelators or metalloprotease inhibitors, preventing Ca2+-mediated axonal injury. Thus, the modulation of Ca2+ levels may be a relevant therapeutic target to develop early axonal protection and prevent dying-back neurodegeneration.

  15. The reactivation of somatosensory cortex and behavioral recovery after sensory loss in mature primates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hui-Xin eQi


    Full Text Available In our experiments, we removed a major source of activation of somatosensory cortex in mature monkeys by unilaterally sectioning the sensory afferents in the dorsal columns of the spinal cord at a high cervical level. At this level, the ascending branches of tactile afferents from the hand are cut, while other branches of these afferents remain intact to terminate on neurons in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord. Immediately after such a lesion, the monkeys seem relatively unimpaired in locomotion and often use the forelimb, but further inspection reveals that they prefer to use the unaffected hand in reaching for food. In addition, systematic testing indicates that they make more errors in retrieving pieces of food, and start using visual inspection of the rotated hand to confirm the success of the grasping of the food. Such difficulties are not surprising as a complete dorsal column lesion totally deactivates the contralateral hand representation in primary somatosensory cortex (area 3b. However, hand use rapidly improves over the first post-lesion weeks, and much of the hand representational territory in contralateral area 3b is reactivated by inputs from the hand in roughly a normal somatotopic pattern. Quantitative measures of single neuron response properties reveal that reactivated neurons respond to tactile stimulation on the hand with high firing rates and only slightly longer latencies. We conclude that preserved dorsal column afferents after nearly complete lesions contribute to the reactivation of cortex and the recovery of the behavior, but second-order sensory pathways in the spinal cord may also play an important role. Our microelectrode recordings indicate that these preserved first-order, and second-order pathways are initially weak and largely ineffective in activating cortex, but they are potentiated during the recovery process. Therapies that would promote this potentiation could usefully enhance recovery after spinal cord

  16. Encoding of Touch Intensity But Not Pleasantness in Human Primary Somatosensory Cortex (United States)

    Laubacher, Claire M.; Olausson, Håkan; Wang, Binquan; Spagnolo, Primavera A.; Bushnell, M. Catherine


    Growing interest in affective touch has delineated a neural network that bypasses primary somatosensory cortex (S1). Several recent studies, however, have cast doubt on the segregation of touch discrimination and affect, suggesting that S1 also encodes affective qualities. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) to examine the role of S1 in processing touch intensity and pleasantness. Twenty-six healthy human adults rated brushing on the hand during fMRI. Intensity ratings significantly predicted activation in S1, whereas pleasantness ratings predicted activation only in the anterior cingulate cortex. Nineteen subjects also received inhibitory rTMS over right hemisphere S1 and the vertex (control). After S1 rTMS, but not after vertex rTMS, sensory discrimination was reduced and subjects with reduced sensory discrimination rated touch as more intense. In contrast, rTMS did not alter ratings of touch pleasantness. Our findings support divergent neural processing of touch intensity and pleasantness, with affective touch encoded outside of S1. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Growing interest in affective touch has identified a neural network that bypasses primary somatosensory cortex (S1). Several recent studies, however, cast doubt on the separation of touch discrimination and affect. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging and repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation to demonstrate the representation of touch discrimination and intensity in S1, but the representation of pleasantness in the anterior cingulate cortex, not S1. Our findings support divergent neural processing of touch intensity and pleasantness, with affective touch encoded outside of S1. Our study contributes to growing delineation of the affective touch system, a crucial step in understanding its dysregulation in numerous clinical conditions such as autism, eating disorders, depression, and chronic pain. PMID:27225773

  17. Differential effects of aging on fore- and hindpaw maps of rat somatosensory cortex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marianne David-Jürgens

    Full Text Available Getting older is associated with a decline of cognitive and sensorimotor abilities, but it remains elusive whether age-related changes are due to accumulating degenerational processes, rendering them largely irreversible, or whether they reflect plastic, adaptational and presumably compensatory changes. Using aged rats as a model we studied how aging affects neural processing in somatosensory cortex. By multi-unit recordings in the fore- and hindpaw cortical maps we compared the effects of aging on receptive field size and response latencies. While in aged animals response latencies of neurons of both cortical representations were lengthened by approximately the same amount, only RFs of hindpaw neurons showed severe expansion with only little changes of forepaw RFs. To obtain insight into parallel changes of walking behavior, we recorded footprints in young and old animals which revealed a general age-related impairment of walking. In addition we found evidence for a limb-specific deterioration of the hindlimbs that was not observed in the forelimbs. Our results show that age-related changes of somatosensory cortical neurons display a complex pattern of regional specificity and parameter-dependence indicating that aging acts rather selectively on cortical processing of sensory information. The fact that RFs of the fore- and hindpaws do not co-vary in aged animals argues against degenerational processes on a global scale. We therefore conclude that age-related alterations are composed of plastic-adaptive alterations in response to modified use and degenerational changes developing with age. As a consequence, age-related changes need not be irreversible but can be subject to amelioration through training and stimulation.

  18. Functional connectivity between somatosensory and motor brain areas predicts individual differences in motor learning by observing. (United States)

    McGregor, Heather R; Gribble, Paul L


    Action observation can facilitate the acquisition of novel motor skills; however, there is considerable individual variability in the extent to which observation promotes motor learning. Here we tested the hypothesis that individual differences in brain function or structure can predict subsequent observation-related gains in motor learning. Subjects underwent an anatomical MRI scan and resting-state fMRI scans to assess preobservation gray matter volume and preobservation resting-state functional connectivity (FC), respectively. On the following day, subjects observed a video of a tutor adapting her reaches to a novel force field. After observation, subjects performed reaches in a force field as a behavioral assessment of gains in motor learning resulting from observation. We found that individual differences in resting-state FC, but not gray matter volume, predicted postobservation gains in motor learning. Preobservation resting-state FC between left primary somatosensory cortex and bilateral dorsal premotor cortex, primary motor cortex, and primary somatosensory cortex and left superior parietal lobule was positively correlated with behavioral measures of postobservation motor learning. Sensory-motor resting-state FC can thus predict the extent to which observation will promote subsequent motor learning. NEW & NOTEWORTHY We show that individual differences in preobservation brain function can predict subsequent observation-related gains in motor learning. Preobservation resting-state functional connectivity within a sensory-motor network may be used as a biomarker for the extent to which observation promotes motor learning. This kind of information may be useful if observation is to be used as a way to boost neuroplasticity and sensory-motor recovery for patients undergoing rehabilitation for diseases that impair movement such as stroke. Copyright © 2017 the American Physiological Society.

  19. Excessive body fat linked to blunted somatosensory cortex response to general reward in adolescents. (United States)

    Navas, J F; Barrós-Loscertales, A; Costumero-Ramos, V; Verdejo-Román, J; Vilar-López, R; Verdejo-García, A


    The brain reward system is key to understanding adolescent obesity in the current obesogenic environment, rich in highly appetising stimuli, to which adolescents are particularly sensitive. We aimed to examine the association between body fat levels and brain reward system responsivity to general (monetary) rewards in male and female adolescents. Sixty-eight adolescents (34 females; mean age (s.d.)= 16.56 (1.35)) were measured for body fat levels with bioelectric impedance, and underwent a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scan during the Monetary Incentive Delay (MID) task. The MID task reliably elicits brain activations associated with two fundamental aspects of reward processing: anticipation and feedback. We conducted regression analyses to examine the association between body fat and brain reward system responsivity during reward anticipation and feedback, while controlling for sex, age and socioeconomic status. We also analysed the moderating impact of sex on the relationship between fat levels and brain responsivity measures. Brain imaging analyses were corrected for multiple comparisons, with a cluster-defining threshold of Preward feedback after controlling for key sociodemographic variables. Although we did not find significant associations between body fat and brain activations during reward anticipation, S1/supramarginal gyrus activation during feedback was linked to increased negative prediction error, that is, less reward than expected, in illustrative post hoc analyses. Sex did not significantly moderate the association between body fat and brain activation in the MID task. In adolescents, higher adiposity is linked to hypo-responsivity of somatosensory regions during general (monetary) reward feedback. Findings suggest that adolescents with excess weight have blunted activation in somatosensory regions involved in reward feedback learning.

  20. Somatosensory Tinnitus: Correlation between Cranio-Cervico-Mandibular Disorder History and Somatic Modulation. (United States)

    Ralli, Massimo; Altissimi, Giancarlo; Turchetta, Rosaria; Mazzei, Filippo; Salviati, Massimo; Cianfrone, Francesca; Orlando, Maria Patrizia; Testugini, Valeria; Cianfrone, Giancarlo


    In a subpopulation of patients, tinnitus can be modulated by movements of the jaw or head and neck due to complex somatosensory-auditory interactions. In some of these subjects, tinnitus could be related to an underlying temporomandibular (TMJ) or craniocervical (NECK) dysfunction that, if correctly identified, could streamline treatment and increase chances of tinnitus improvement. However, it is still unclear whether somatic modulation of tinnitus could be used as a screening tool for identifying such patients. In this study, we included 310 tinnitus patients with normal hearing, no psychiatric comorbidities, and a positive history of TMJ and/or NECK dysfunction and/or a positive modulation of tinnitus to evaluate the characteristics of somatic modulation, investigate the relationship between positive history and positive modulation, and identify factors most strongly associated with somatic modulation. Tinnitus modulation was present in 79.67% of the patients. We found a significant association within the same subjects between a positive history and a positive tinnitus modulation for the same region, mainly for TMJ in unilateral tinnitus patients and for TMJ + NECK in bilateral tinnitus patients. A strong correlation between history and modulation in the same somatic region within the same subgroups of subjects was also identified. Most TMJ maneuvers resulted in an increased loudness, while NECK maneuvers showed an increase in tinnitus loudness in about 59% of cases. High-pitched tinnitus and male gender were associated with a higher prevalence of modulation; no differences were found for tinnitus onset, Tinnitus Handicap Inventory score, and age. In this paper, we report a strong association between history and modulation for the same regions within the same patients; such an association should always be investigated to improve chances of a correct diagnosis of somatosensory tinnitus. © 2017 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  1. Heightened sensitivity to somatosensory stimuli in anorexia nervosa: an exploratory study with the SASTCA scale. (United States)

    Calvo Sagardoy, Rosa; Gallego Morales, Luis T; Kassem García, Soledad; Codesal Julián, Rosana; Blanco Fernández, Ascensión; Solórzano Ostolaza, Gloria; Morales Martínez, Carmen


    To analyse the presence of heightened sensory sensitivity in patients with anorexia nervosa, which seems similar but not identical to that described in patients with unexplained somatic symptoms or body dysmorphic disorder. We developed a sensory sensitivity scale in eating disorders (SASTCA), which measures the intensity of the response to specific somatosensory stimuli. The scale was completed by 48 patients with anorexia and a control group of 31 participants matched in age, sex and social and educational level. The results were compared with those obtained with the Barsky Somatosensory Amplification Scale (SSAS). The reliability (Cronbach's/alpha, 0.946; Guttman/ split-half, 0.936) and validity (ROC, 0.933) of the SASTCA scale are indicative of its high sensitivity and specificity. The anorexia group had a significantly higher mean score on the SASTCA scale than the control group (pscales correlated positively (r=.634). These preliminary results suggest the presence in Anorexia of heightened sensory sensitivity which differs from the sensitivity of the control group. This sensitivity has a significant relationship with that described in patients with somatic complaints about health (SSD) or appearance (BDD). Could this heightened sensory sensitivity help us to explain the process of forming the distorted body self-concept (I'm fat, sick, ugly) in all these patients? Once its presence has been confirmed in other patients with anorexia, their relatives and other patients with somatic disorders this heightened sensitivity could constitute the somatic endophenotype of anorexia? Copyright AULA MEDICA EDICIONES 2014. Published by AULA MEDICA. All rights reserved.

  2. Metaplasticity in human primary somatosensory cortex: effects on physiology and tactile perception. (United States)

    Jones, Christina B; Lulic, Tea; Bailey, Aaron Z; Mackenzie, Tanner N; Mi, Yi Qun; Tommerdahl, Mark; Nelson, Aimee J


    Theta-burst stimulation (TBS) over human primary motor cortex evokes plasticity and metaplasticity, the latter contributing to the homeostatic balance of excitation and inhibition. Our knowledge of TBS-induced effects on primary somatosensory cortex (SI) is limited, and it is unknown whether TBS induces metaplasticity within human SI. Sixteen right-handed participants (6 females, mean age 23 yr) received two TBS protocols [continuous TBS (cTBS) and intermittent TBS (iTBS)] delivered in six different combinations over SI in separate sessions. TBS protocols were delivered at 30 Hz and were as follows: a single cTBS protocol, a single iTBS protocol, cTBS followed by cTBS, iTBS followed by iTBS, cTBS followed by iTBS, and iTBS followed by cTBS. Measures included the amplitudes of the first and second somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) via median nerve stimulation, their paired-pulse ratio (PPR), and temporal order judgment (TOJ). Dependent measures were obtained before TBS and at 5, 25, 50, and 90 min following stimulation. Results indicate similar effects following cTBS and iTBS; increased amplitudes of the second SEP and PPR without amplitude changes to SEP 1, and impairments in TOJ. Metaplasticity was observed such that TOJ impairments following a single cTBS protocol were abolished following consecutive cTBS protocols. Additionally, consecutive iTBS protocols altered the time course of effects when compared with a single iTBS protocol. In conclusion, 30-Hz cTBS and iTBS protocols delivered in isolation induce effects consistent with a TBS-induced reduction in intracortical inhibition within SI. Furthermore, cTBS- and iTBS-induced metaplasticity appear to follow homeostatic and nonhomeostatic rules, respectively. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  3. Cortical plasticity induced by spike-triggered microstimulation in primate somatosensory cortex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weiguo Song

    Full Text Available Electrical stimulation of the nervous system for therapeutic purposes, such as deep brain stimulation in the treatment of Parkinson's disease, has been used for decades. Recently, increased attention has focused on using microstimulation to restore functions as diverse as somatosensation and memory. However, how microstimulation changes the neural substrate is still not fully understood. Microstimulation may cause cortical changes that could either compete with or complement natural neural processes, and could result in neuroplastic changes rendering the region dysfunctional or even epileptic. As part of our efforts to produce neuroprosthetic devices and to further study the effects of microstimulation on the cortex, we stimulated and recorded from microelectrode arrays in the hand area of the primary somatosensory cortex (area 1 in two awake macaque monkeys. We applied a simple neuroprosthetic microstimulation protocol to a pair of electrodes in the area 1 array, using either random pulses or pulses time-locked to the recorded spiking activity of a reference neuron. This setup was replicated using a computer model of the thalamocortical system, which consisted of 1980 spiking neurons distributed among six cortical layers and two thalamic nuclei. Experimentally, we found that spike-triggered microstimulation induced cortical plasticity, as shown by increased unit-pair mutual information, while random microstimulation did not. In addition, there was an increased response to touch following spike-triggered microstimulation, along with decreased neural variability. The computer model successfully reproduced both qualitative and quantitative aspects of the experimental findings. The physiological findings of this study suggest that even simple microstimulation protocols can be used to increase somatosensory information flow.

  4. Extrinsic and intrinsic regulation of axon regeneration at a crossroads. (United States)

    Kaplan, Andrew; Ong Tone, Stephan; Fournier, Alyson E


    Repair of the injured spinal cord is a major challenge in medicine. The limited intrinsic regenerative response mounted by adult central nervous system (CNS) neurons is further hampered by astrogliosis, myelin debris and scar tissue that characterize the damaged CNS. Improved axon regeneration and recovery can be elicited by targeting extrinsic factors as well as by boosting neuron-intrinsic growth regulators. Our knowledge of the molecular basis of intrinsic and extrinsic regulators of regeneration has expanded rapidly, resulting in promising new targets to promote repair. Intriguingly certain neuron-intrinsic growth regulators are emerging as promising targets to both stimulate growth and relieve extrinsic inhibition of regeneration. This crossroads between the intrinsic and extrinsic aspects of spinal cord injury is a promising target for effective therapies for this unmet need.

  5. The cholinergic ligand binding material of axonal membranes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mautner, H.G.; Coronado, R.; Jumblatt, J.E.


    Choline acetyltransferase and acetylcholinesterase, the enzymes responsible for the synthesis and hydrolysis of ACh, are present in nerve fibers. In crustacean peripheral nerves, release of ACh from cut nerve fibers has been demonstrated. Previously closed membrane vesicles have been prepared from lobster walking leg nerve plasma membrane and saturable binding of cholinergic agonsist and antagonists to such membranes have been demonstrated. This paper studies this axonal cholinergic binding material, and elucidates its functions. The binding of tritium-nicotine to lobster nerve plasma membranes was antagonized by a series of cholinergic ligands as well as by a series of local anesthetics. This preparation was capable of binding I 125-alpha-bungarotoxin, a ligand widely believed to be a specific label for nicotinic ACh receptor. The labelling of 50 K petide band with tritium-MBTA following disulfide reduction is illustrated

  6. The axonal guidance receptor neogenin promotes acute inflammation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Klemens König

    Full Text Available Neuronal guidance proteins (NGP were originally described in the context of axonal growth and migration. Yet recent work has demonstrated that NGPs also serve as guidance cues for immune competent cells. A crucial target receptor for NGPs during embryonic development is the neogenin receptor, however its role during acute inflammation is unknown. We report here that neogenin is abundantly expressed outside the nervous system and that animals with endogenous repression of neogenin (Neo1(-/- demonstrate attenuated changes of acute inflammation. Studies using functional inhibition of neogenin resulted in a significant attenuation of inflammatory peritonitis. In studies employing bone marrow chimeric animals we found the hematopoietic presence of Neo1(-/- to be responsible for the attenuated inflammatory response. Taken together our studies suggest that the guidance receptor neogenin holds crucial importance for the propagation of an acute inflammatory response and further define mechanisms shared between the nervous and the immune system.

  7. Neurogenetics of slow axonal transport: from cells to animals. (United States)

    Sadananda, Aparna; Ray, Krishanu


    Slow axonal transport is a multivariate phenomenon implicated in several neurodegenerative disorders. Recent reports have unraveled the molecular basis of the transport of certain slow component proteins, such as the neurofilament subunits, tubulin, and certain soluble enzymes such as Ca(2+)/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase IIa (CaM kinase IIa), etc., in tissue cultured neurons. In addition, genetic analyses also implicate microtubule-dependent motors and other housekeeping proteins in this process. However, the biological relevance of this phenomenon is not so well understood. Here, the authors have discussed the possibility of adopting neurogenetic analyses in multiple model organisms to correlate molecular level measurements of the slow transport phenomenon to animal behavior, thus facilitating the investigation of its biological efficacy.

  8. Neuron Morphology Influences Axon Initial Segment Plasticity123 (United States)


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

  9. Dynein is the motor for retrograde axonal transport of organelles

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schnapp, B.J.; Reese, T.S.


    Vesicular organelles in axons of nerve cells are transported along microtubules either toward their plus ends (fast anterograde transport) or toward their minus ends (retrograde transport). Two microtubule-based motors were previously identified by examining plastic beads induced to move along microtubules by cytosol fractions from the squid giant axon: (i) an anterograde motor, kinesin, and (ii) a retrograde motor, which is characterized here. The retrograde motor, a cytosolic protein previously termed HMW1, was purified from optic lobes and extruded axoplasm by nucleotide-dependent microtubule affinity and release; microtubule gliding was used as the assay of motor activity. The following properties of the retrograde motor suggest that it is cytoplasmic dynein: (i) sedimentation at 20-22 S with a heavy chain of Mr greater than 200,000 that coelectrophoreses with the alpha and beta subunits of axonemal dynein, (ii) cleavage by UV irradiation in the presence of ATP and vanadate, and (iii) a molecular structure resembling two-headed dynein from axonemes. Furthermore, bead movement toward the minus end of microtubules was blocked when axoplasmic supernatants were treated with UV/vanadate. Treatment of axoplasmic supernatant with UV/vanadate also blocks the retrograde movement of purified organelles in vitro without changing the number of anterograde moving organelles, indicating that dynein interacts specifically with a subgroup of organelles programmed to move toward the cell body. However, purified optic lobe dynein, like purified kinesin, does not by itself promote the movement of purified organelles along microtubules, suggesting that additional axoplasmic factors are necessary for retrograde as well as anterograde transport

  10. Diffuse axonal injury at ultra-high field MRI.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christoph Moenninghoff

    Full Text Available Diffuse axonal injury (DAI is a specific type of traumatic brain injury caused by shearing forces leading to widespread tearing of axons and small vessels. Traumatic microbleeds (TMBs are regarded as a radiological marker for DAI. This study aims to compare DAI-associated TMBs at 3 Tesla (T and 7 T susceptibility weighted imaging (SWI to evaluate possible diagnostic benefits of ultra-high field (UHF MRI.10 study participants (4 male, 6 female, age range 20-74 years with known DAI were included. All MR exams were performed with a 3 T MR system (Magnetom Skyra and a 7 T MR research system (Magnetom 7 T, Siemens AG, Healthcare Sector, Erlangen, Germany each in combination with a 32-channel-receive coil. The average time interval between trauma and imaging was 22 months. Location and count of TMBs were independently evaluated by two neuroradiologists on 3 T and 7 T SWI images with similar and additionally increased spatial resolution at 7 T. Inter- and intraobserver reliability was assessed using the interclass correlation coefficient (ICC. Count and diameter of TMB were evaluated with Wilcoxon signed rank test.Susceptibility weighted imaging revealed a total of 485 TMBs (range 1-190, median 25 at 3 T, 584 TMBs (plus 20%, range 1-262, median 30.5 at 7 T with similar spatial resolution, and 684 TMBs (plus 41%, range 1-288, median 39.5 at 7 T with 10-times higher spatial resolution. Hemorrhagic DAI appeared significantly larger at 7 T compared to 3 T (p = 0.005. Inter- and intraobserver correlation regarding the counted TMB was high and almost equal 3 T and 7 T.7 T SWI improves the depiction of small hemorrhagic DAI compared to 3 T and may be supplementary to lower field strengths for diagnostic in inconclusive or medicolegal cases.

  11. Axonal transport of proteoglycans to the goldfish optic tectum

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ripellino, J.A.; Elam, J.S.


    The study addressed the question of whether 35 SO 4 labeled molecules that have been delivered to the goldfish optic nerve terminals by rapid axonal transport include soluble proteoglycans. For analysis, tectal homogenates were subfractionated into a soluble fraction (soluble after centrifugation at 105,000 g), a lysis fraction (soluble after treatment with hypotonic buffer followed by centrifugation at 105,000 g) and a final 105,000 g pellet fraction. The soluble fraction contained 25.7% of incorporated radioactivity and upon DEAE chromatography was resolved into a fraction of sulfated glycoproteins eluting at 0-0.32 M NaCl and containing 39.5% of total soluble label and a fraction eluting at 0.32-0.60 M NaCl containing 53.9% of soluble label. This latter fraction was included on columns of Sepharose CL-6B with or without 4 M guanidine and after pronase digestion was found to have 51% of its radioactivity contained in the glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) heparan sulfate and chondroitin (4 or 6) sulfate in the ratio of 70% to 30%. Mobility of both intact proteoglycans and constituent GAGs on Sepharose CL-6B indicated a size distribution that is smaller than has been observed for proteoglycans and GAGs from cultured neuronal cell lines. Similar analysis of lysis fraction, containing 11.5% of incorporated 35 SO 4 , showed a mixture of heparan sulfate and chondroitin sulfate containing proteoglycans, apparent free heparan sulfate and few, if any, sulfated glycoproteins. Overall, the results support the hypothesis that soluble proteoglycans are among the molecules axonally transported in the visual system

  12. Live Imaging of Calcium Dynamics during Axon Degeneration Reveals Two Functionally Distinct Phases of Calcium Influx (United States)

    Yamagishi, Yuya; Tessier-Lavigne, Marc


    Calcium is a key regulator of axon degeneration caused by trauma and disease, but its specific spatial and temporal dynamics in injured axons remain unclear. To clarify the function of calcium in axon degeneration, we observed calcium dynamics in single injured neurons in live zebrafish larvae and tested the temporal requirement for calcium in zebrafish neurons and cultured mouse DRG neurons. Using laser axotomy to induce Wallerian degeneration (WD) in zebrafish peripheral sensory axons, we monitored calcium dynamics from injury to fragmentation, revealing two stereotyped phases of axonal calcium influx. First, axotomy triggered a transient local calcium wave originating at the injury site. This initial calcium wave only disrupted mitochondria near the injury site and was not altered by expression of the protective WD slow (WldS) protein. Inducing multiple waves with additional axotomies did not change the kinetics of degeneration. In contrast, a second phase of calcium influx occurring minutes before fragmentation spread as a wave throughout the axon, entered mitochondria, and was abolished by WldS expression. In live zebrafish, chelating calcium after the first wave, but before the second wave, delayed the progress of fragmentation. In cultured DRG neurons, chelating calcium early in the process of WD did not alter degeneration, but chelating calcium late in WD delayed fragmentation. We propose that a terminal calcium wave is a key instructive component of the axon degeneration program. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Axon degeneration resulting from trauma or neurodegenerative disease can cause devastating deficits in neural function. Understanding the molecular and cellular events that execute axon degeneration is essential for developing treatments to address these conditions. Calcium is known to contribute to axon degeneration, but its temporal requirements in this process have been unclear. Live calcium imaging in severed zebrafish neurons and temporally controlled

  13. Compensatory axon sprouting for very slow axonal die-back in a transgenic model of spinal muscular atrophy type III. (United States)

    Udina, Esther; Putman, Charles T; Harris, Luke R; Tyreman, Neil; Cook, Victoria E; Gordon, Tessa


    Smn +/- transgenic mouse is a model of the mildest form of spinal muscular atrophy. Although there is a loss of spinal motoneurons in 11-month-old animals, muscular force is maintained. This maintained muscular force is mediated by reinnervation of the denervated fibres by surviving motoneurons. The spinal motoneurons in these animals do not show an increased susceptibility to death after nerve injury and they retain their regenerative capacity. We conclude that the hypothesized immaturity of the neuromuscular system in this model cannot explain the loss of motoneurons by systematic die-back. Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a common autosomal recessive disorder in humans and is the leading genetic cause of infantile death. Patients lack the SMN1 gene with the severity of the disease depending on the number of copies of the highly homologous SMN2 gene. Although motoneuron death in the Smn +/- transgenic mouse model of the mildest form of SMA, SMA type III, has been reported, we have used retrograde tracing of sciatic and femoral motoneurons in the hindlimb with recording of muscle and motor unit isometric forces to count the number of motoneurons with intact neuromuscular connections. Thereby, we investigated whether incomplete maturation of the neuromuscular system induced by survival motoneuron protein (SMN) defects is responsible for die-back of axons relative to survival of motoneurons. First, a reduction of ∼30% of backlabelled motoneurons began relatively late, at 11 months of age, with a significant loss of 19% at 7 months. Motor axon die-back was affirmed by motor unit number estimation. Loss of functional motor units was fully compensated by axonal sprouting to retain normal contractile force in four hindlimb muscles (three fast-twitch and one slow-twitch) innervated by branches of the sciatic nerve. Second, our evaluation of whether axotomy of motoneurons in the adult Smn +/- transgenic mouse increases their susceptibility to cell death demonstrated

  14. Hindsight regulates photoreceptor axon targeting through transcriptional control of jitterbug/Filamin and multiple genes involved in axon guidance in Drosophila. (United States)

    Oliva, Carlos; Molina-Fernandez, Claudia; Maureira, Miguel; Candia, Noemi; López, Estefanía; Hassan, Bassem; Aerts, Stein; Cánovas, José; Olguín, Patricio; Sierralta, Jimena


    During axon targeting, a stereotyped pattern of connectivity is achieved by the integration of intrinsic genetic programs and the response to extrinsic long and short-range directional cues. How this coordination occurs is the subject of intense study. Transcription factors play a central role due to their ability to regulate the expression of multiple genes required to sense and respond to these cues during development. Here we show that the transcription factor HNT regulates layer-specific photoreceptor axon targeting in Drosophila through transcriptional control of jbug/Filamin and multiple genes involved in axon guidance and cytoskeleton organization.Using a microarray analysis we identified 235 genes whose expression levels were changed by HNT overexpression in the eye primordia. We analyzed nine candidate genes involved in cytoskeleton regulation and axon guidance, six of which displayed significantly altered gene expression levels in hnt mutant retinas. Functional analysis confirmed the role of OTK/PTK7 in photoreceptor axon targeting and uncovered Tiggrin, an integrin ligand, and Jbug/Filamin, a conserved actin- binding protein, as new factors that participate of photoreceptor axon targeting. Moreover, we provided in silico and molecular evidence that supports jbug/Filamin as a direct transcriptional target of HNT and that HNT acts partially through Jbug/Filamin in vivo to regulate axon guidance. Our work broadens the understanding of how HNT regulates the coordinated expression of a group of genes to achieve the correct connectivity pattern in the Drosophila visual system. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Develop Neurobiol 75: 1018-1032, 2015. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. The Crossed Projection to the Striatum in Two Species of Monkey and in Humans: Behavioral and Evolutionary Significance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Innocenti, Giorgio M.; Dyrby, Tim Bjørn; Andersen, Kasper Winther


    The corpus callosum establishes the anatomical continuity between the 2 hemispheres and coordinates their activity. Using histological tracing, single axon reconstructions, and diffusion tractography, we describe a callosal projection to n caudatus and putamen in monkeys and humans. In both species......, the origin of this projection is more restricted than that of the ipsilateral projection. In monkeys, it consists of thin axons (0.4–0.6 µm), appropriate for spatial and temporal dispersion of subliminal inputs. For prefrontal cortex, contralateral minus ipsilateral delays to striatum calculated from axon...... diameters and conduction distance are monkey and, by extrapolation,

  16. Glia-axon interactions and the regulation of the extracellular K+ in the peripheral nerve. (United States)

    Jirounek, P; Robert, A; Kindler, E; Blazek, T


    Changes in membrane potential of both axons and Schwann cells were measured simultaneously during electrical activity and during the period of recovery in the rabbit vagus nerve by the use of the sucrose-gap apparatus. During low-frequency stimulation (0.5-1 Hz) the preparation developed a ouabain-sensitive hyperpolarization. This hyperpolarization increased when the inwardly rectifying K+ channels in Schwann cells were blocked with Ba2+, indicating that the hyperpolarization was generated by the electrogenic glial Na(+)-K+ pump. During trains at higher frequencies (15 Hz), the preparation depolarized, but after cessation of the stimulation it developed a posttetanic hyperpolarization (PTH). The PTH was also ouabain-sensitive and was strongly enhanced by Cs+ which is known to block the hyperpolarization-activated inward current (Ih) in axons but not in glial cells. These results show that the PTH reflects mainly the axonal electrogenic pump. Our results indicate that during activity the K+ released from the firing axons is removed from the extracellular space by Schwann cells and that after cessation of the stimulation the K+ surplus returns from Schwann cells back to axons. Both the glial and axonal K+ uptake is mediated by successive activation of the glial and axonal Na(+)-K+ pump. The nature of the signalling mechanisms that control the pumping rates of the respective pumps remain unknown.

  17. Characterization of axon formation in the embryonic stem cell-derived motoneuron. (United States)

    Pan, Hung-Chuan; Wu, Ya-Ting; Shen, Shih-Cheng; Wang, Chi-Chung; Tsai, Ming-Shiun; Cheng, Fu-Chou; Lin, Shinn-Zong; Chen, Ching-Wen; Liu, Ching-San; Su, Hong-Lin


    The developing neural cell must form a highly organized architecture to properly receive and transmit nerve signals. Neural formation from embryonic stem (ES) cells provides a novel system for studying axonogenesis, which are orchestrated by polarity-regulating molecules. Here the ES-derived motoneurons, identified by HB9 promoter-driven green fluorescent protein (GFP) expression, showed characteristics of motoneuron-specific gene expression. In the majority of motoneurons, one of the bilateral neurites developed into an axon that featured with axonal markers, including Tau1, vesicle acetylcholine transporter, and synaptophysin. Interestingly, one third of the motoneurons developed bi-axonal processes but no multiple axonal GFP cell was found. The neuronal polarity-regulating proteins, including the phosphorylated AKT and ERK, were compartmentalized into both of the bilateral axonal tips. Importantly, this aberrant axon morphology was still present after the engraftment of GFP(+) neurons into the spinal cord, suggesting that even a mature neural environment fails to provide a proper niche to guide normal axon formation. These findings underscore the necessity for evaluating the morphogenesis and functionality of neurons before the clinical trials using ES or somatic stem cells.

  18. Target-Derived Neurotrophins Coordinate Transcription and Transport of Bclw to Prevent Axonal Degeneration (United States)

    Cosker, Katharina E.; Pazyra-Murphy, Maria F.; Fenstermacher, Sara J.


    Establishment of neuronal circuitry depends on both formation and refinement of neural connections. During this process, target-derived neurotrophins regulate both transcription and translation to enable selective axon survival or elimination. However, it is not known whether retrograde signaling pathways that control transcription are coordinated with neurotrophin-regulated actions that transpire in the axon. Here we report that target-derived neurotrophins coordinate transcription of the antiapoptotic gene bclw with transport of bclw mRNA to the axon, and thereby prevent axonal degeneration in rat and mouse sensory neurons. We show that neurotrophin stimulation of nerve terminals elicits new bclw transcripts that are immediately transported to the axons and translated into protein. Bclw interacts with Bax and suppresses the caspase6 apoptotic cascade that fosters axonal degeneration. The scope of bclw regulation at the levels of transcription, transport, and translation provides a mechanism whereby sustained neurotrophin stimulation can be integrated over time, so that axonal survival is restricted to neurons connected within a stable circuit. PMID:23516285

  19. A Communication Theoretical Modeling of Axonal Propagation in Hippocampal Pyramidal Neurons. (United States)

    Ramezani, Hamideh; Akan, Ozgur B


    Understanding the fundamentals of communication among neurons, known as neuro-spike communication, leads to reach bio-inspired nanoscale communication paradigms. In this paper, we focus on a part of neuro-spike communication, known as axonal transmission, and propose a realistic model for it. The shape of the spike during axonal transmission varies according to previously applied stimulations to the neuron, and these variations affect the amount of information communicated between neurons. Hence, to reach an accurate model for neuro-spike communication, the memory of axon and its effect on the axonal transmission should be considered, which are not studied in the existing literature. In this paper, we extract the important factors on the memory of axon and define memory states based on these factors. We also describe the transition among these states and the properties of axonal transmission in each of them. Finally, we demonstrate that the proposed model can follow changes in the axonal functionality properly by simulating the proposed model and reporting the root mean square error between simulation results and experimental data.

  20. Microtubule-targeting drugs rescue axonal swellings in cortical neurons from spastin knockout mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Coralie Fassier


    Mutations in SPG4, encoding the microtubule-severing protein spastin, are responsible for the most frequent form of hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP, a heterogeneous group of genetic diseases characterized by degeneration of the corticospinal tracts. We previously reported that mice harboring a deletion in Spg4, generating a premature stop codon, develop progressive axonal degeneration characterized by focal axonal swellings associated with impaired axonal transport. To further characterize the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying this mutant phenotype, we have assessed microtubule dynamics and axonal transport in primary cultures of cortical neurons from spastin-mutant mice. We show an early and marked impairment of microtubule dynamics all along the axons of spastin-deficient cortical neurons, which is likely to be responsible for the occurrence of axonal swellings and cargo stalling. Our analysis also reveals that a modulation of microtubule dynamics by microtubule-targeting drugs rescues the mutant phenotype of cortical neurons. Together, these results contribute to a better understanding of the pathogenesis of SPG4-linked HSP and ascertain the influence of microtubule-targeted drugs on the early axonal phenotype in a mouse model of the disease.

  1. Optogenetically enhanced axon regeneration: motor versus sensory neuron-specific stimulation. (United States)

    Ward, Patricia J; Clanton, Scott L; English, Arthur W


    Brief neuronal activation in injured peripheral nerves is both necessary and sufficient to enhance motor axon regeneration, and this effect is specific to the activated motoneurons. It is less clear whether sensory neurons respond in a similar manner to neuronal activation following peripheral axotomy. Further, it is unknown to what extent enhancement of axon regeneration with increased neuronal activity relies on a reflexive interaction within the spinal circuitry. We used mouse genetics and optical tools to evaluate the precision and selectivity of system-specific neuronal activation to enhance axon regeneration in a mixed nerve. We evaluated sensory and motor axon regeneration in two different mouse models expressing the light-sensitive cation channel, channelrhodopsin (ChR2). We selectively activated either sensory or motor axons using light stimulation combined with transection and repair of the sciatic nerve. Regardless of genotype, the number of ChR2-positive neurons whose axons had regenerated successfully was greater following system-specific optical treatment, with no effect on the number of ChR2-negative neurons (whether motor or sensory neurons). We conclude that acute system-specific neuronal activation is sufficient to enhance both motor and sensory axon regeneration. This regeneration-enhancing effect is likely cell autonomous. © 2018 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  2. The Influence of Glutamate on Axonal Compound Action Potential In Vitro. (United States)

    Abouelela, Ahmed; Wieraszko, Andrzej


    Background  Our previous experiments demonstrated modulation of the amplitude of the axonal compound action potential (CAP) by electrical stimulation. To verify assumption that glutamate released from axons could be involved in this phenomenon, the modification of the axonal CAP induced by glutamate was investigated. Objectives  The major objective of this research is to verify the hypothesis that axonal activity would trigger the release of glutamate, which in turn would interact with specific axonal receptors modifying the amplitude of the action potential. Methods  Segments of the sciatic nerve were exposed to exogenous glutamate in vitro, and CAP was recorded before and after glutamate application. In some experiments, the release of radioactive glutamate analog from the sciatic nerve exposed to exogenous glutamate was also evaluated. Results  The glutamate-induced increase in CAP was blocked by different glutamate receptor antagonists. The effect of glutamate was not observed in Ca-free medium, and was blocked by antagonists of calcium channels. Exogenous glutamate, applied to the segments of sciatic nerve, induced the release of radioactive glutamate analog, demonstrating glutamate-induced glutamate release. Immunohistochemical examination revealed that axolemma contains components necessary for glutamatergic neurotransmission. Conclusion  The proteins of the axonal membrane can under the influence of electrical stimulation or exogenous glutamate change membrane permeability and ionic conductance, leading to a change in the amplitude of CAP. We suggest that increased axonal activity leads to the release of glutamate that results in changes in the amplitude of CAPs.

  3. The Microtubule Regulatory Protein Stathmin Is Required to Maintain the Integrity of Axonal Microtubules in Drosophila (United States)

    Duncan, Jason E.; Lytle, Nikki K.; Zuniga, Alfredo; Goldstein, Lawrence S. B.


    Axonal transport, a form of long-distance, bi-directional intracellular transport that occurs between the cell body and synaptic terminal, is critical in maintaining the function and viability of neurons. We have identified a requirement for the stathmin (stai) gene in the maintenance of axonal microtubules and regulation of axonal transport in Drosophila . The stai gene encodes a cytosolic phosphoprotein that regulates microtubule dynamics by partitioning tubulin dimers between pools of soluble tubulin and polymerized microtubules, and by directly binding to microtubules and promoting depolymerization. Analysis of stai function in Drosophila , which has a single stai gene, circumvents potential complications with studies performed in vertebrate systems in which mutant phenotypes may be compensated by genetic redundancy of other members of the stai gene family. This has allowed us to identify an essential function for stai in the maintenance of the integrity of axonal microtubules. In addition to the severe disruption in the abundance and architecture of microtubules in the axons of stai mutant Drosophila , we also observe additional neurological phenotypes associated with loss of stai function including a posterior paralysis and tail-flip phenotype in third instar larvae, aberrant accumulation of transported membranous organelles in stai deficient axons, a progressive bang-sensitive response to mechanical stimulation reminiscent of the class of Drosophila mutants used to model human epileptic seizures, and a reduced adult lifespan. Reductions in the levels of Kinesin-1, the primary anterograde motor in axonal transport, enhance these phenotypes. Collectively, our results indicate that stai has an important role in neuronal function, likely through the maintenance of microtubule integrity in the axons of nerves of the peripheral nervous system necessary to support and sustain long-distance axonal transport. PMID:23840848

  4. Schwann cell transplantation improves reticulospinal axon growth and forelimb strength after severe cervical spinal cord contusion. (United States)

    Schaal, S M; Kitay, B M; Cho, K S; Lo, T P; Barakat, D J; Marcillo, A E; Sanchez, A R; Andrade, C M; Pearse, D D


    Schwann cell (SC) implantation alone has been shown to promote the growth of propriospinal and sensory axons, but not long-tract descending axons, after thoracic spinal cord injury (SCI). In the current study, we examined if an axotomy close to the cell body of origin (so as to enhance the intrinsic growth response) could permit supraspinal axons to grow onto SC grafts. Adult female Fischer rats received a severe (C5) cervical contusion (1.1 mm displacement, 3 KDyn). At 1 week postinjury, 2 million SCs ex vivo transduced with lentiviral vector encoding enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) were implanted within media into the injury epicenter; injury-only animals served as controls. Animals were tested weekly using the BBB score for 7 weeks postimplantation and received at end point tests for upper body strength: self-supported forelimb hanging, forearm grip force, and the incline plane. Following behavioral assessment, animals were anterogradely traced bilaterally from the reticular formation using BDA-Texas Red. Stereological quantification revealed a twofold increase in the numbers of preserved NeuN+ neurons rostral and caudal to the injury/graft site in SC implanted animals, corroborating previous reports of their neuroprotective efficacy. Examination of labeled reticulospinal axon growth revealed that while rarely an axon was present within the lesion site of injury-only controls, numerous reticulospinal axons had penetrated the SC implant/lesion milieu. This has not been observed following implantation of SCs alone into the injured thoracic spinal cord. Significant behavioral improvements over injury-only controls in upper limb strength, including an enhanced grip strength (a 296% increase) and an increased self-supported forelimb hanging, accompanied SC-mediated neuroprotection and reticulospinal axon growth. The current study further supports the neuroprotective efficacy of SC implants after SCI and demonstrates that SCs alone are capable of supporting

  5. Molecular Analysis of Sensory Axon Branching Unraveled a cGMP-Dependent Signaling Cascade

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandre Dumoulin


    Full Text Available Axonal branching is a key process in the establishment of circuit connectivity within the nervous system. Molecular-genetic studies have shown that a specific form of axonal branching—the bifurcation of sensory neurons at the transition zone between the peripheral and the central nervous system—is regulated by a cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP-dependent signaling cascade which is composed of C-type natriuretic peptide (CNP, the receptor guanylyl cyclase Npr2, and cGMP-dependent protein kinase Iα (cGKIα. In the absence of any one of these components, neurons in dorsal root ganglia (DRG and cranial sensory ganglia no longer bifurcate, and instead turn in either an ascending or a descending direction. In contrast, collateral axonal branch formation which represents a second type of axonal branch formation is not affected by inactivation of CNP, Npr2, or cGKI. Whereas axon bifurcation was lost in mouse mutants deficient for components of CNP-induced cGMP formation; the absence of the cGMP-degrading enzyme phosphodiesterase 2A had no effect on axon bifurcation. Adult mice that lack sensory axon bifurcation due to the conditional inactivation of Npr2-mediated cGMP signaling in DRG neurons demonstrated an altered shape of sensory axon terminal fields in the spinal cord, indicating that elaborate compensatory mechanisms reorganize neuronal circuits in the absence of bifurcation. On a functional level, these mice showed impaired heat sensation and nociception induced by chemical irritants, whereas responses to cold sensation, mechanical stimulation, and motor coordination are normal. These data point to a critical role of axon bifurcation for the processing of acute pain perception.

  6. Trafficking of cholesterol from cell bodies to distal axons in Niemann Pick C1-deficient neurons. (United States)

    Karten, Barbara; Vance, Dennis E; Campenot, Robert B; Vance, Jean E


    Niemann Pick type C (NPC) disease is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder. In cells lacking functional NPC1 protein, endocytosed cholesterol accumulates in late endosomes/lysosomes. We utilized primary neuronal cultures in which cell bodies and distal axons reside in separate compartments to investigate the requirement of NPC1 protein for transport of cholesterol from cell bodies to distal axons. We have recently observed that in NPC1-deficient neurons compared with wild-type neurons, cholesterol accumulates in cell bodies but is reduced in distal axons (Karten, B., Vance, D. E., Campenot, R. B., and Vance, J. E. (2002) J. Neurochem. 83, 1154-1163). We now show that NPC1 protein is expressed in both cell bodies and distal axons. In NPC1-deficient neurons, cholesterol delivered to cell bodies from low density lipoproteins (LDLs), high density lipoproteins, or cyclodextrin complexes was transported into axons in normal amounts, whereas transport of endogenously synthesized cholesterol was impaired. Inhibition of cholesterol synthesis with pravastatin in wild-type and NPC1-deficient neurons reduced axonal growth. However, LDLs restored a normal rate of growth to wild-type but not NPC1-deficient neurons treated with pravastatin. Thus, although LDL cholesterol is transported into axons of NPC1-deficient neurons, this source of cholesterol does not sustain normal axonal growth. Over the lifespan of NPC1-deficient neurons, these defects in cholesterol transport might be responsible for the observed altered distribution of cholesterol between cell bodies and axons and, consequently, might contribute to the neurological dysfunction in NPC disease.

  7. Molecular Analysis of Sensory Axon Branching Unraveled a cGMP-Dependent Signaling Cascade. (United States)

    Dumoulin, Alexandre; Ter-Avetisyan, Gohar; Schmidt, Hannes; Rathjen, Fritz G


    Axonal branching is a key process in the establishment of circuit connectivity within the nervous system. Molecular-genetic studies have shown that a specific form of axonal branching—the bifurcation of sensory neurons at the transition zone between the peripheral and the central nervous system—is regulated by a cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP)-dependent signaling cascade which is composed of C-type natriuretic peptide (CNP), the receptor guanylyl cyclase Npr2, and cGMP-dependent protein kinase Iα (cGKIα). In the absence of any one of these components, neurons in dorsal root ganglia (DRG) and cranial sensory ganglia no longer bifurcate, and instead turn in either an ascending or a descending direction. In contrast, collateral axonal branch formation which represents a second type of axonal branch formation is not affected by inactivation of CNP, Npr2, or cGKI. Whereas axon bifurcation was lost in mouse mutants deficient for components of CNP-induced cGMP formation; the absence of the cGMP-degrading enzyme phosphodiesterase 2A had no effect on axon bifurcation. Adult mice that lack sensory axon bifurcation due to the conditional inactivation of Npr2-mediated cGMP signaling in DRG neurons demonstrated an altered shape of sensory axon terminal fields in the spinal cord, indicating that elaborate compensatory mechanisms reorganize neuronal circuits in the absence of bifurcation. On a functional level, these mice showed impaired heat sensation and nociception induced by chemical irritants, whereas responses to cold sensation, mechanical stimulation, and motor coordination are normal. These data point to a critical role of axon bifurcation for the processing of acute pain perception.

  8. Current Opportunities for Clinical Monitoring of Axonal Pathology in Traumatic Brain Injury

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Parmenion P. Tsitsopoulos


    Full Text Available Traumatic brain injury (TBI is a multidimensional and highly complex disease commonly resulting in widespread injury to axons, due to rapid inertial acceleration/deceleration forces transmitted to the brain during impact. Axonal injury leads to brain network dysfunction, significantly contributing to cognitive and functional impairments frequently observed in TBI survivors. Diffuse axonal injury (DAI is a clinical entity suggested by impaired level of consciousness and coma on clinical examination and characterized by widespread injury to the hemispheric white matter tracts, the corpus callosum and the brain stem. The clinical course of DAI is commonly unpredictable and it remains a challenging entity with limited therapeutic options, to date. Although axonal integrity may be disrupted at impact, the majority of axonal pathology evolves over time, resulting from delayed activation of complex intracellular biochemical cascades. Activation of these secondary biochemical pathways may lead to axonal transection, named secondary axotomy, and be responsible for the clinical decline of DAI patients. Advances in the neurocritical care of TBI patients have been achieved by refinements in multimodality monitoring for prevention and early detection of secondary injury factors, which can be applied also to DAI. There is an emerging role for biomarkers in blood, cerebrospinal fluid, and interstitial fluid using microdialysis in the evaluation of axonal injury in TBI. These biomarker studies have assessed various axonal and neuroglial markers as well as inflammatory mediators, such as cytokines and chemokines. Moreover, modern neuroimaging can detect subtle or overt DAI/white matter changes in diffuse TBI patients across all injury severities using magnetic resonance spectroscopy, diffusion tensor imaging, and positron emission tomography. Importantly, serial neuroimaging studies provide evidence for evolving axonal injury. Since axonal injury may be a key

  9. Diffuse axonal injury: detection of changes in anisotropy of water diffusion by diffusion-weighted imaging

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chan, J.H.M.; Tsui, E.Y.K.; Yuen, M.K.; Peh, W.C.G.; Fong, D.; Fok, K.F.; Leung, K.M.; Fung, K.K.L.


    Myelinated axons of white matter demonstrate prominent directional differences in water diffusion. We performed diffusion-weighted imaging on ten patients with head injury to explore the feasibility of using water diffusion anisotropy for quantitating diffuse axonal injury. We showed significant decrease in diffusion anisotropy indices in areas with or without signal abnormality on T2 and T2*-weighted images. We conclude that the water diffusion anisotropy index a potentially useful, sensitive and quantitative way of diagnosing and assessing patients with diffuse axonal injury. (orig.)

  10. Reduced resting-state functional connectivity of the somatosensory cortex predicts psychopathological symptoms in women with bulimia nervosa. (United States)

    Lavagnino, Luca; Amianto, Federico; D'Agata, Federico; Huang, Zirui; Mortara, Paolo; Abbate-Daga, Giovanni; Marzola, Enrica; Spalatro, Angela; Fassino, Secondo; Northoff, Georg


    Alterations in the resting-state functional connectivity (rs-FC) of several brain networks have been demonstrated in eating disorders. However, very few studies are currently available on brain network dysfunctions in bulimia nervosa (BN). The somatosensory network is central in processing body-related stimuli and it may be altered in BN. The present study therefore aimed to investigate rs-FC in the somatosensory network in bulimic women. Sixteen medication-free women with BN (age = 23 ± 5 years) and 18 matched controls (age = 23 ± 3 years) underwent a functional magnetic resonance resting-state scan and assessment of eating disorder symptoms. Within-network and seed-based functional connectivity analyses were conducted to assess rs-FC within the somatosensory network and to other areas of the brain. Bulimia nervosa patients showed a decreased rs-FC both within the somatosensory network (t = 9.0, df = 1, P = 0.005) and with posterior cingulate cortex and two visual areas (the right middle occipital gyrus and the right cuneus) (P = 0.05 corrected for multiple comparison). The rs-FC of the left paracentral lobule with the right middle occipital gyrus correlated with psychopathology measures like bulimia (r = -0.4; P = 0.02) and interoceptive awareness (r = -0.4; P = 0.01). Analyses were conducted using age, BMI (body mass index), and depressive symptoms as covariates. Our findings show a specific alteration of the rs-FC of the somatosensory cortex in BN patients, which correlates with eating disorder symptoms. The region in the right middle occipital gyrus is implicated in body processing and is known as extrastriate body area (EBA). The connectivity between the somatosensory cortex and the EBA might be related to dysfunctions in body image processing. The results should be considered preliminary due to the small sample size.

  11. Somatosensory Nerve Function, Measured by Vibration Thresholds in Asymptomatic Tennis Players: A Pilot Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah Harrisson


    Full Text Available Tennis players are vulnerable to injury in their upper limbs due to the repetitive exposure to racket vibrations and torsional forces during play, leading to musculoskeletal adaptations in the dominant arm including some evidence of changes in nerve function (Colak et al., 2004. Vibration is a sensitive technique for diagnosing mild pathology in clinically asymptomatic participant groups. It has been used in participants with various musculoskeletal disorders (Laursen et al., 2006 (Tucker et al., 2007 showing widespread and bilateral increases in vibration threshold. Tests of somatosensory function by vibration will be abnormal prior to changes in nerve conduction velocity. Thus vibration testing in a sub-clinical group of participants may a more sensitive measure of nerve function compared to nerve conduction by electrodiagnostic testing. The aim of this pilot study was to conduct an exploratory investigation to establish whether tennis players have a reduction in their somatosensory nerve function compared to non- tennis playing controls. It also set out to compare the somatosensory nerve function of the dominant compared to the non-dominant upper limb in tennis players. Healthy tennis players (males, n = 8, females, n = 2, mean age 22 years and control non- tennis playing volunteers (males, n = 6, females, n = 4, mean age 22 years were recruited on an opportunistic basis from a tennis centre in London UK. Participants were excluded if they had any history of neurological impairment, serious injury or fracture or any arthritic condition affecting the upper limbs, cervical or thoracic spine. Control participants were excluded if it was deemed that they played a sport where there was exposure to repetitive use of the upper body. Ethical approval was obtained from the University College London Ethics Committee and all participants gave written informed consent. A preliminary clinical examination was carried out on all participants followed by

  12. Neurophysiological assessment of auditory, peripheral nerve, somatosensory, and visual system function after developmental exposure to gasoline, E15, and E85 vapors. (United States)

    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency — Visual, auditory, somatosensory, and peripheral nerve evoked responses. This dataset is associated with the following publication: Herr , D., D. Freeborn , L. Degn ,...

  13. Loss of Autophagy in Proopiomelanocortin Neurons Perturbs Axon Growth and Causes Metabolic Dysregulation (United States)

    Coupé, Bérengère; Ishii, Yuko; Dietrich, Marcelo O; Komatsu, Masaaki; Horvath, Tamas L.; Bouret, Sebastien G.


    Summary The hypothalamic melanocortin system, which includes neurons that produce proopiomelanocortin (POMC)-derived peptides, is a major negative regulator of energy balance. POMC neurons begin to acquire their unique properties during neonatal life. The formation of functional neural systems requires massive cytoplasmic remodeling that may involve autophagy, an important intracellular mechanism for the degradation of damaged proteins and organelles. Here we investigated the functional and structural effects of the deletion of an essential autophagy gene, Atg7, in POMC neurons. Lack of Atg7 in POMC neurons caused higher post-weaning body weight, increased adiposity, and glucose intolerance. These metabolic impairments were associated with an age-dependant accumulation of ubiquitin/p62-positive aggregates in the hypothalamus and a disruption in the maturation of POMC-containing axonal projections. Together, these data provide direct genetic evidence that Atg7 in POMC neurons is required for normal metabolic regulation and neural development, and they implicate hypothalamic autophagy deficiency in the pathogenesis of obesity. PMID:22285542

  14. Loss of autophagy in pro-opiomelanocortin neurons perturbs axon growth and causes metabolic dysregulation. (United States)

    Coupé, Bérengère; Ishii, Yuko; Dietrich, Marcelo O; Komatsu, Masaaki; Horvath, Tamas L; Bouret, Sebastien G


    The hypothalamic melanocortin system, which includes neurons that produce pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC)-derived peptides, is a major negative regulator of energy balance. POMC neurons begin to acquire their unique properties during neonatal life. The formation of functional neural systems requires massive cytoplasmic remodeling that may involve autophagy, an important intracellular mechanism for the degradation of damaged proteins and organelles. Here we investigated the functional and structural effects of the deletion of an essential autophagy gene, Atg7, in POMC neurons. Lack of Atg7 in POMC neurons caused higher postweaning body weight, increased adiposity, and glucose intolerance. These metabolic impairments were associated with an age-dependent accumulation of ubiquitin/p62-positive aggregates in the hypothalamus and a disruption in the maturation of POMC-containing axonal projections. Together, these data provide direct genetic evidence that Atg7 in POMC neurons is required for normal metabolic regulation and neural development, and they implicate hypothalamic autophagy deficiency in the pathogenesis of obesity. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. MEG reveals a fast pathway from somatosensory cortex to occipital areas via posterior parietal cortex in a blind subject

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ioannides, Andreas A; Liu, Lichan; Poghosyan, Vahe


    magnetoencephalography (MEG) data recorded from one congenitally blind and two sighted subjects after stimulation of the left and right median nerves at three intensities: below sensory threshold, above sensory threshold and above motor threshold; the last sufficient to produce thumb twitching. We identified...... reproducible brain responses in the primary somatosensory (S1) and motor (M1) cortices at around 20 ms post-stimulus, which were very similar in sighted and blind subjects. Time-frequency analysis revealed strong 45-70 Hz activity at latencies of 20-50 ms in S1 and M1, and posterior parietal cortex Brodmann...... of information through this pathway occurred in stages characterized by convergence of activations into specific cortical regions. In sighted subjects, no linked activity was found that led from the somatosensory to the visual cortex through any of the studied brain regions. These results provide the first...

  16. Rapid-rate paired associative stimulation over the primary somatosensory cortex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philemon Tsang

    Full Text Available Rapid-rate paired associative stimulation (rPAS involves repeat pairing of peripheral nerve stimulation and Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS pulses at a 5 Hz frequency. RPAS over primary motor cortex (M1 operates with spike-timing dependent plasticity such that increases in corticospinal excitability occur when the nerve and TMS pulse temporally coincide in cortex. The present study investigates the effects of rPAS over primary somatosensory cortex (SI which has not been performed to date. In a series of experiments, rPAS was delivered over SI and M1 at varying timing intervals between the nerve and TMS pulse based on the latency of the N20 somatosensory evoked potential (SEP component within each participant (intervals for SI-rPAS: N20, N20-2.5 ms, N20 + 2.5 ms, intervals for M1-rPAS: N20, N20+5 ms. Changes in SI physiology were measured via SEPs (N20, P25, N20-P25 and SEP paired-pulse inhibition, and changes in M1 physiology were measured with motor evoked potentials and short-latency afferent inhibition. Measures were obtained before rPAS and at 5, 25 and 45 minutes following stimulation. Results indicate that paired-pulse inhibition and short-latency afferent inhibition were reduced only when the SI-rPAS nerve-TMS timing interval was set to N20-2.5 ms. SI-rPAS over SI also led to remote effects on motor physiology over a wider range of nerve-TMS intervals (N20-2.5 ms - N20+2.5 ms during which motor evoked potentials were increased. M1-rPAS increased motor evoked potentials and reduced short-latency afferent inhibition as previously reported. These data provide evidence that, similar to M1, rPAS over SI is spike-timing dependent and is capable of exerting changes in SI and M1 physiology.

  17. Vestibular and Somatosensory Covergence in Postural Equilibrium Control: Insights from Spaceflight and Bed Rest Studies (United States)

    Mulavara, A. P.; Batson, C. D.; Buxton, R. E.; Feiveson, A. H.; Kofman, I. S.; Lee, S. M. C.; Miller, C. A.; Peters, B. T.; Phillips, T.; Platts, S. H.; hide


    The goal of the Functional Task Test study is to determine the effects of space flight on functional tests that are representative of high priority exploration mission tasks and to identify the key underlying physiological factors that contribute to decrements in performance. We are currently conducting studies on both International Space Station (ISS) astronauts experiencing up to 6 months of microgravity and subjects experiencing 70 days of 6??head-down bed-rest as an analog for space flight. Bed-rest provides the opportunity for us to investigate the role of prolonged axial body unloading in isolation from the other physiological effects produced by exposure to the microgravity environment of space flight. This allows us to parse out the contribution of the body unloading somatosensory component on functional performance. Both ISS crewmembers and bed-rest subjects were tested using a protocol that evaluated functional performance along with tests of postural and locomotor control before and after space flight and bed-rest, respectively. Functional tests included ladder climbing, hatch opening, jump down, manual manipulation of objects and tool use, seat egress and obstacle avoidance, recovery from a fall, and object translation tasks. Astronauts were tested three times before flight, and on 1, 6, and 30 days after landing. Bed-rest subjects were tested three times before bed-rest and immediately after getting up from bed-rest as well as 1, 6, and 12 days after re-ambulation. A comparison of bed-rest and space flight data showed a significant concordance in performance changes across all functional tests. Tasks requiring a greater demand for dynamic control of postural equilibrium (i.e. fall recovery, seat egress/obstacle avoidance during walking, object translation, jump down) showed the greatest decrement in performance. Functional tests with reduced requirements for postural stability showed less reduction in performance. Results indicate that body unloading

  18. Transient receptor potential channel polymorphisms are associated with the somatosensory function in neuropathic pain patients.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas Binder

    Full Text Available Transient receptor potential channels are important mediators of thermal and mechanical stimuli and play an important role in neuropathic pain. The contribution of hereditary variants in the genes of transient receptor potential channels to neuropathic pain is unknown. We investigated the frequency of transient receptor potential ankyrin 1, transient receptor potential melastin 8 and transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 single nucleotide polymorphisms and their impact on somatosensory abnormalities in neuropathic pain patients. Within the German Research Network on Neuropathic Pain (Deutscher Forscbungsverbund Neuropathischer Schmerz 371 neuropathic pain patients were phenotypically characterized using standardized quantitative sensory testing. Pyrosequencing was employed to determine a total of eleven single nucleotide polymorphisms in transient receptor potential channel genes of the neuropathic pain patients and a cohort of 253 German healthy volunteers. Associations of quantitative sensory testing parameters and single nucleotide polymorphisms between and within groups and subgroups, based on sensory phenotypes, were analyzed. Single nucleotide polymorphisms frequencies did not differ between both the cohorts. However, in neuropathic pain patients transient receptor potential ankyrin 1 710G>A (rs920829, E179K was associated with the presence of paradoxical heat sensation (p = 0.03, and transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 1911A>G (rs8065080, I585V with cold hypoalgesia (p = 0.0035. Two main subgroups characterized by preserved (1 and impaired (2 sensory function were identified. In subgroup 1 transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 1911A>G led to significantly less heat hyperalgesia, pinprick hyperalgesia and mechanical hypaesthesia (p = 0.006, p = 0.005 and pG (rs222747, M315I to cold hypaesthesia (p = 0.002, but there was absence of associations in subgroup 2. In this study we found no evidence that genetic

  19. Primary somatosensory cortex in chronic low back pain – a 1H-MRS study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sharma KN


    Full Text Available Neena K Sharma1, Kenneth McCarson2, Linda Van Dillen5, Angela Lentz1, Talal Khan3, Carmen M Cirstea1,41Department of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Science, 2Department of Pharmacology, Toxicology and Therapeutics, 3Department of Anesthesiology, 4Hoglund Brain Imaging Center, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, KS, USA; 5Program in Physical Therapy and Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis, MO, USAAbstract: The goal of this study was to investigate whether certain metabolites, specific to neurons, glial cells, and the neuronal-glial neurotransmission system, in the primary somatosensory cortex (SSC, are altered and correlated with clinical characteristics of pain in patients with chronic low back pain (LBP. Eleven LBP patients and eleven age-matched healthy controls were included. N-acetylaspartate (NAA, choline (Cho, myo-inositol (mI, and glutamine/glutamate (Glx were measured with proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H-MRS in left and right SSC. Differences in metabolite concentrations relative to those of controls were evaluated as well as analyses of metabolite correlations within and between SSCs. Relationships between metabolite concentrations and pain characteristics were also evaluated. We found decreased NAA in the left SSC (P = 0.001 and decreased Cho (P = 0.04 along with lower correlations between all metabolites in right SSC (P = 0.007 in LBP compared to controls. In addition, we found higher and significant correlations between left and right mI (P < 0.001 in LBP vs P = 0.1 in controls and between left mI and right Cho (P = 0.048 vs P = 0.6. Left and right NAA levels were negatively correlated with pain duration (P = 0.04 and P = 0.02 respectively while right Glx was positively correlated with pain severity (P = 0.04. Our preliminary results demonstrated significant altered neuronal-glial interactions in SSC, with left neural alterations related to pain duration

  20. Precise Somatotopic Thalamocortical Axon Guidance Depends on LPA-Mediated PRG-2/Radixin Signaling

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cheng, Jin; Sahani, Sadhna; Hausrat, Torben Johann


    Precise connection of thalamic barreloids with their corresponding cortical barrels is critical for processing of vibrissal sensory information. Here, we show that PRG-2, a phospholipid-interacting molecule, is important for thalamocortical axon guidance. Developing thalamocortical fibers both...

  1. In vivo electrophysiological measurement of the rat ulnar nerve with axonal excitability testing

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wild, Brandon M.; Morris, Renée; Moldovan, Mihai


    Electrophysiology enables the objective assessment of peripheral nerve function in vivo. Traditional nerve conduction measures such as amplitude and latency detect chronic axon loss and demyelination, respectively. Axonal excitability techniques "by threshold tracking" expand upon these measures...... by providing information regarding the activity of ion channels, pumps and exchangers that relate to acute function and may precede degenerative events. As such, the use of axonal excitability in animal models of neurological disorders may provide a useful in vivo measure to assess novel therapeutic...... interventions. Here we describe an experimental setup for multiple measures of motor axonal excitability techniques in the rat ulnar nerve. The animals are anesthetized with isoflurane and carefully monitored to ensure constant and adequate depth of anesthesia. Body temperature, respiration rate, heart rate...

  2. Axonal plasticity elicits long-term changes in oligodendroglia and myelinated fibers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drøjdahl, Nina; Nielsen, Helle Hvilsted; Gardi, Jonathan E


    Axons are linked to induction of myelination during development and to the maintenance of myelin and myelinated tracts in the adult CNS. Currently, it is unknown whether and how axonal plasticity in adult CNS impacts the myelinating cells and their precursors. In this article, we report that newly...... formed axonal sprouts are able to induce a protracted myelination response in adult CNS. We show that newly formed axonal sprouts, induced by lesion of the entorhino-hippocampal perforant pathway, have the ability to induce a myelination response in stratum radiatum and lucidum CA3. The lesion resulted...... in significant recruitment of newly formed myelinating cells, documented by incorporation of the proliferation marker bromodeoxyuridine into chondroitin sulphate NG2 expressing cells in stratum radiatum and lucidum CA3 early after lesion, and the occurrence of a 28% increase in the number of oligodendrocytes...

  3. Organophosphate-Related Alterations in Myelin and Axonal Transport in the Living Mammalian Brain (United States)


    stress, impairments of mitochondrial function, neuroinflammation, altered neurotrophin responses, etc. (reviewed, Soltaninejad and Abdollahi, 2009...Exposure to Chlorpyrifos in Rats: Protracted Effects on Axonal Transport, Neurotrophin Receptors, Cholinergic Markers, and Information Processing

  4. Organophosphate Related Alterations in Myelin and Axonal Transport in the Living Mammalian Brain (United States)


    function, neuroinflammation, al- tered neurotrophin responses, etc. (reviewed, Soltaninejad and Abdollahi, 2009; Banks and Lein, 2012; Terry, 2012). Conflict...JN, Middlemore ML, Williamson LN, et al. Chronic, intermittent exposure to chlorpyrifos in rats: protracted effects on axonal transport, neurotrophin

  5. Effects of X-irradiation on axonal sprouting induced by botulinum toxin

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gomez, S; Duchen, L W [National Hospital, London (UK); Hornsey, S [Hammersmith Hospital, London (UK). M.R.C. Cyclotron Unit


    The effect of X-irradiation on axonal sprouting of motor nerves induced by botulinum toxin was examined. Muscles of one leg in the mouse were X-irradiated (15Gy) prior to the injection of a locally paralysing dose of botulinum toxin. It was found that axonal sprouting occurred as expected, but the sprouts remained unmyelinated and many degenerated. Fewer new end-plates were formed, muscles remained more severely atrophied and supersensitive to acetylcholine and recovery of neuromuscular transmission was greatly delayed when compared with the effects of botulinum toxin alone. X-irradiation did not prevent sprouting but, probably by impairing Schwann cell proliferation, altered axon-Schwann cell relationships and prevented the maturation of newly-formed axons and the differentiation of new end-plates.

  6. BORC/kinesin-1 ensemble drives polarized transport of lysosomes into the axon. (United States)

    Farías, Ginny G; Guardia, Carlos M; De Pace, Raffaella; Britt, Dylan J; Bonifacino, Juan S


    The ability of lysosomes to move within the cytoplasm is important for many cellular functions. This ability is particularly critical in neurons, which comprise vast, highly differentiated domains such as the axon and dendrites. The mechanisms that control lysosome movement in these domains, however, remain poorly understood. Here we show that an ensemble of BORC, Arl8, SKIP, and kinesin-1, previously shown to mediate centrifugal transport of lysosomes in nonneuronal cells, specifically drives lysosome transport into the axon, and not the dendrites, in cultured rat hippocampal neurons. This transport is essential for maintenance of axonal growth-cone dynamics and autophagosome turnover. Our findings illustrate how a general mechanism for lysosome dispersal in nonneuronal cells is adapted to drive polarized transport in neurons, and emphasize the importance of this mechanism for critical axonal processes.

  7. BORC/kinesin-1 ensemble drives polarized transport of lysosomes into the axon (United States)

    Farías, Ginny G.; Guardia, Carlos M.; De Pace, Raffaella; Britt, Dylan J.; Bonifacino, Juan S.


    The ability of lysosomes to move within the cytoplasm is important for many cellular functions. This ability is particularly critical in neurons, which comprise vast, highly differentiated domains such as the axon and dendrites. The mechanisms that control lysosome movement in these domains, however, remain poorly understood. Here we show that an ensemble of BORC, Arl8, SKIP, and kinesin-1, previously shown to mediate centrifugal transport of lysosomes in nonneuronal cells, specifically drives lysosome transport into the axon, and not the dendrites, in cultured rat hippocampal neurons. This transport is essential for maintenance of axonal growth-cone dynamics and autophagosome turnover. Our findings illustrate how a general mechanism for lysosome dispersal in nonneuronal cells is adapted to drive polarized transport in neurons, and emphasize the importance of this mechanism for critical axonal processes. PMID:28320970

  8. Confirmatory factor analysis and sample invariance of the Chinese version of Somatosensory Amplification Scale (ChSAS) among Chinese adolescents


    Tam, B. K.; Wong, W. S.


    Objective: This paper aimed to evaluate the factor structure of the Chinese version of Somatosensory Amplification Scale (ChSAS) in a sample of Chinese adolescents across different grade levels using confirmatory factor analysis (CFA). Methods: A total of 1991 Chinese adolescents completed the ChSAS. CFA assessed the fit of the one-factor model to the entire sample. Factorial invariance of the ChSAS was also examined across grade levels using multigroup CFA. Results: Results of CFA confirmed ...

  9. Acute Appendicitis, Somatosensory Disturbances ("Head Zones"), and the Differential Diagnosis of Anterior Cutaneous Nerve Entrapment Syndrome (ACNES).