Reyes, Laura D; Harland, Tessa; Reep, Roger L; Sherwood, Chet C; Jacobs, Bob
The current study investigates neuron morphology in presumptive primary somatosensory (S1) and primary visual (V1) cortices of the Florida manatee (Trichechus manatus latirostris) as revealed by Golgi impregnation. Sirenians, including manatees, have an aquatic lifestyle, a large body size, and a relatively large lissencephalic brain. The present study examines neuron morphology in 3 cortical areas: in S1, dorsolateral cortex area 1 (DL1) and cluster cortex area 2 (CL2) and in V1, dorsolateral cortex area 4 (DL4). Neurons exhibited a variety of morphological types, with pyramidal neurons being the most common. The large variety of neuron types present in the manatee cortex was comparable to that seen in other eutherian mammals, except for rodents and primates, where pyramid-shaped neurons predominate. A comparison between pyramidal neurons in S1 and V1 indicated relatively greater dendritic branching in S1. Across all 3 areas, the dendritic arborization pattern of pyramidal neurons was also similar to that observed previously in the afrotherian rock hyrax, cetartiodactyls, opossums, and echidnas but did not resemble the widely bifurcated dendrites seen in the large-brained African elephant. Despite adaptations for an aquatic environment, manatees did not share specific neuron types such as tritufted and star-like neurons that have been found in cetaceans. Manatees exhibit an evolutionarily primitive pattern of cortical neuron morphology shared with most other mammals and do not appear to have neuronal specializations for an aquatic niche. © 2016 S. Karger AG, Basel.
Reyes, Laura D; Stimpson, Cheryl D; Gupta, Kanika; Raghanti, Mary Ann; Hof, Patrick R; Reep, Roger L; Sherwood, Chet C
Within afrotherians, sirenians are unusual due to their aquatic lifestyle, large body size and relatively large lissencephalic brain. However, little is known about the neuron type distributions of the cerebral cortex in sirenians within the context of other afrotherians and aquatic mammals. The present study investigated two cortical regions, dorsolateral cortex area 1 (DL1) and cluster cortex area 2 (CL2), in the presumptive primary somatosensory cortex (S1) in Florida manatees (Trichechus manatus latirostris) to characterize cyto- and chemoarchitecture. The mean neuron density for both cortical regions was 35,617 neurons/mm(3) and fell within the 95% prediction intervals relative to brain mass based on a reference group of afrotherians and xenarthrans. Densities of inhibitory interneuron subtypes labeled against calcium-binding proteins and neuropeptide Y were relatively low compared to afrotherians and xenarthrans and also formed a small percentage of the overall population of inhibitory interneurons as revealed by GAD67 immunoreactivity. Nonphosphorylated neurofilament protein-immunoreactive (NPNFP-ir) neurons comprised a mean of 60% of neurons in layer V across DL1 and CL2. DL1 contained a higher percentage of NPNFP-ir neurons than CL2, although CL2 had a higher variety of morphological types. The mean percentage of NPNFP-ir neurons in the two regions of the presumptive S1 were low compared to other afrotherians and xenarthrans but were within the 95% prediction intervals relative to brain mass, and their morphologies were comparable to those found in other afrotherians and xenarthrans. Although this specific pattern of neuron types and densities sets the manatee apart from other afrotherians and xenarthrans, the manatee isocortex does not appear to be explicitly adapted for an aquatic habitat. Many of the features that are shared between manatees and cetaceans are also shared with a diverse array of terrestrial mammals and likely represent highly conserved
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
Anaelli A Nogueira-Campos
Full Text Available The rat primary somatosensory cortex (S1 is remarkable for its conspicuous vertical compartmentalization in barrels and septal columns, which are additionally stratified in horizontal layers. Whereas excitatory neurons from each of these compartments perform different types of processing, the role of interneurons is much less clear. Among the numerous types of GABAergic interneurons, those producing nitric oxide (NO are especially puzzling, since this gaseous messenger can modulate neural activity, synaptic plasticity and neurovascular coupling. We used a quantitative morphological approach to investigate whether nitrergic interneurons, which might therefore be considered both as NO volume diffusers and as elements of local circuitry, display features that could relate to barrel cortex architecture. In fixed brain sections, nitrergic interneurons can be revealed by histochemical processing for NADPH-diaphorase (NADPHd. Here, the dendritic arbors of nitrergic neurons from different compartments of area S1 were 3D reconstructed from serial 200-μm thick sections, using 100x objective and the Neurolucida system. Standard morphological parameters were extracted for all individual arbors and compared across columns and layers. Wedge analysis was used to compute dendritic orientation indices. Supragranular layers displayed the highest density of nitrergic neurons, whereas layer IV contained nitrergic neurons with largest soma area. The highest nitrergic neuronal density was found in septa, where dendrites were previously characterized as more extense and ramified than in barrels. Dendritic arbors were not confined to the boundaries of the column nor layer of their respective soma, being mostly double-tufted and vertically oriented, except in supragranular layers. These data strongly suggest that nitrergic interneurons adapt their morphology to the dynamics of processing performed by cortical compartments.
Storchi, Riccardo; Zippo, Antonio G.; Caramenti, Gian Carlo; Valente, Maurizio; Biella, Gabriele E. M.
Local Field Potentials (LFPs) integrate multiple neuronal events like synaptic inputs and intracellular potentials. LFP spatiotemporal features are particularly relevant in view of their applications both in research (e.g. for understanding brain rhythms, inter-areal neural communication and neronal coding) and in the clinics (e.g. for improving invasive Brain-Machine Interface devices). However the relation between LFPs and spikes is complex and not fully understood. As spikes represent the fundamental currency of neuronal communication this gap in knowledge strongly limits our comprehension of neuronal phenomena underlying LFPs. We investigated the LFP-spike relation during tactile stimulation in primary somatosensory (S-I) cortex in the rat. First we quantified how reliably LFPs and spikes code for a stimulus occurrence. Then we used the information obtained from our analyses to design a predictive model for spike occurrence based on LFP inputs. The model was endowed with a flexible meta-structure whose exact form, both in parameters and structure, was estimated by using a multi-objective optimization strategy. Our method provided a set of nonlinear simple equations that maximized the match between models and true neurons in terms of spike timings and Peri Stimulus Time Histograms. We found that both LFPs and spikes can code for stimulus occurrence with millisecond precision, showing, however, high variability. Spike patterns were predicted significantly above chance for 75% of the neurons analysed. Crucially, the level of prediction accuracy depended on the reliability in coding for the stimulus occurrence. The best predictions were obtained when both spikes and LFPs were highly responsive to the stimuli. Spike reliability is known to depend on neuron intrinsic properties (i.e. on channel noise) and on spontaneous local network fluctuations. Our results suggest that the latter, measured through the LFP response variability, play a dominant role. PMID:22586452
Full Text Available Background: Ketamine is a commonly used intravenous anesthetic which produces dissociation anesthesia, analgesia, and amnesia. The mechanism of ketamine-induced synaptic inhibition in high-level cortical areas is still unknown. We aimed to elucidate the effects of different concentrations of ketamine on the glutamatergic synaptic transmission of the neurons in the primary somatosensory cortex by using the whole-cell patch-clamp method. Methods: Sprague-Dawley rats (11–19 postnatal days, n=36 were used to obtain brain slices (300 μM. Spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (data from 40 neurons were recorded at a command potential of -70 mV in the presence of bicuculline (a competitive antagonist of GABAA receptors, 30 μM and strychnine (glycine receptor antagonist, 30 μM. Miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (data from 40 neurons were also recorded when 1 μM of tetrodotoxin was added into the artificial cerebrospinal fluid. We used GraphPad Prism5for statistical analysis. Significant differences in the mean amplitude and frequency were tested using the Student paired 2-tailed t test. Values of P<0.05 were considered significant. Results: Different concentrations of ketamine inhibited the frequency and amplitude of the spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents as well as the amplitude of the miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents in a concentration-dependent manner, but they exerted no significant effect on the frequency of the miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents. Conclusion: Ketamine inhibited the excitatory synaptic transmission of the neurons in the primary somatosensory cortex. The inhibition may have been mediated by a reduction in the sensitivity of the postsynaptic glutamatergic receptors.
Aksenov, Daniil P; Li, Limin; Miller, Michael J; Wyrwicz, Alice M
The adaptation of neuronal responses to stimulation, in which a peak transient response is followed by a sustained plateau, has been well-studied. The blood oxygenation level dependent (BOLD) functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) signal has also been shown to exhibit adaptation on a longer time scale. However, some regions such as the visual and auditory cortices exhibit significant BOLD adaptation, whereas other such as the whisker barrel cortex may not adapt. In the sensory cortex a combination of thalamic inputs and intracortical activity drives hemodynamic changes, although the relative contributions of these components are not entirely understood. The aim of this study is to assess the role of thalamic inputs vs. intracortical processing in shaping BOLD adaptation during stimulation in the somatosensory cortex. Using simultaneous fMRI and electrophysiology in awake rabbits, we measured BOLD, local field potentials (LFPs), single- and multi-unit activity in the cortex during whisker and optogenetic stimulation. This design allowed us to compare BOLD and haemodynamic responses during activation of the normal thalamocortical sensory pathway (i.e., both inputs and intracortical activity) vs. the direct optical activation of intracortical circuitry alone. Our findings show that whereas LFP and multi-unit (MUA) responses adapted, neither optogenetic nor sensory stimulation produced significant BOLD adaptation. We observed for both paradigms a variety of excitatory and inhibitory single unit responses. We conclude that sensory feed-forward thalamic inputs are not primarily responsible for shaping BOLD adaptation to stimuli; but the single-unit results point to a role in this behaviour for specific excitatory and inhibitory neuronal sub-populations, which may not correlate with aggregate neuronal activity. © 2016 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Khateb, Mohamed; Schiller, Jackie; Schiller, Yitzhak
The primary vibrissae motor cortex (vM1) is responsible for generating whisking movements. In parallel, vM1 also sends information directly to the sensory barrel cortex (vS1). In this study, we investigated the effects of vM1 activation on processing of vibrissae sensory information in vS1 of the rat. To dissociate the vibrissae sensory-motor loop, we optogenetically activated vM1 and independently passively stimulated principal vibrissae. Optogenetic activation of vM1 supra-linearly amplified the response of vS1 neurons to passive vibrissa stimulation in all cortical layers measured. Maximal amplification occurred when onset of vM1 optogenetic activation preceded vibrissa stimulation by 20 ms. In addition to amplification, vM1 activation also sharpened angular tuning of vS1 neurons in all cortical layers measured. Our findings indicated that in addition to output motor signals, vM1 also sends preparatory signals to vS1 that serve to amplify and sharpen the response of neurons in the barrel cortex to incoming sensory input signals.
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
Full Text Available The steady state dynamics and experience-dependent plasticity of dendritic spines of layer (L 2/3 and L5B cortical pyramidal neurons have recently been assessed using in vivo two-photon microscopy (Trachtenberg et al., 2002; Zuo et al., 2005; Holtmaat et al., 2006. In contrast, not much is known about spine dynamics in L4/5a neurons, regarded as direct recipients of thalamocortical input (Constantinople and Bruno, 2013. In the adult mouse somatosensory cortex (SCx, the transcription factor Ebf2 is enriched in excitatory neurons of L4/5a, including pyramidal neurons. We assessed the molecular and electrophysiological properties of these neurons as well as the morphology of their apical tufts (Scholl analysis and cortical outputs (optogenetics within the SCx. To test the hypothesis that L4/5a pyramidal neurons play an important role in sensory processing (given their key laminar position; soma depth ~450-480 µm, we successfully labeled them in Ebf2-Cre mice with EGFP by expressing recombinant rAAV vectors in utero. Using longitudinal in vivo two-photon microscopy through a craniotomy (Mostany and Portera-Cailliau, 2008, we repeatedly imaged spines in apical dendritic tufts of L4/5a neurons under basal conditions and after sensory deprivation. Under steady-state conditions in adults, the morphology of the apical tufts and the mean spine density were stable at 0.39 ± 0.05 spines/μm (comparable to L5B, Mostany et al., 2011. Interestingly, spine elimination increases 4-8 days after sensory deprivation, probably due to input loss. This suggests that Ebf2+ L4/5a neurons could be involved in early steps of processing of thalamocortical information.
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.
Wang, Liping; Li, Xianchun; Hsiao, Steven S.; Bodner, Mark; Lenz, Fred; Zhou, Yong-Di
Previous studies suggested that primary somatosensory (SI) neurons in well-trained monkeys participated in the haptic-haptic unimodal delayed matching-to-sample (DMS) task. In this study, 585 SI neurons were recorded in monkeys performing a task that was identical to that in the previous studies but without requiring discrimination and active…
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
Pashut, Tamar; Magidov, Dafna; Ben-Porat, Hana; Wolfus, Shuki; Friedman, Alex; Perel, Eli; Lavidor, Michal; Bar-Gad, Izhar; Yeshurun, Yosef; Korngreen, Alon
Although transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is a popular tool for both basic research and clinical applications, its actions on nerve cells are only partially understood. We have previously predicted, using compartmental modeling, that magnetic stimulation of central nervous system neurons depolarized the soma followed by initiation of an action potential in the initial segment of the axon. The simulations also predict that neurons with low current threshold are more susceptible to magnetic stimulation. Here we tested these theoretical predictions by combining in vitro patch-clamp recordings from rat brain slices with magnetic stimulation and compartmental modeling. In agreement with the modeling, our recordings demonstrate the dependence of magnetic stimulation-triggered action potentials on the type and state of the neuron and its orientation within the magnetic field. Our results suggest that the observed effects of TMS are deeply rooted in the biophysical properties of single neurons in the central nervous system and provide a framework both for interpreting existing TMS data and developing new simulation-based tools and therapies.
Full Text Available Although transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS is a popular tool for both basic research and clinical applications, its actions on nerve cells are only partially understood. We have previously predicted, using compartmental modeling, that magnetic stimulation of central nervous system neurons depolarized the soma followed by initiation of an action potential in the initial segment of the axon. The simulations also predict that neurons with low current threshold are more susceptible to magnetic stimulation. Here we tested these theoretical predictions by combining in vitro patch-clamp recordings from rat brain slices with magnetic stimulation and compartmental modeling. In agreement with the modeling, our recordings demonstrate the dependence of magnetic stimulation-triggered action potentials on the type and state of the neuron and its orientation within the magnetic field. Our results suggest that the observed effects of TMS are deeply rooted in the biophysical properties of single neurons in the central nervous system and provide a framework both for interpreting existing TMS data and developing new simulation-based tools and therapies.
Borbély, S; Jocsak, Gergely; Moldovan, Kinga; Sedlak, Lucie; Preininger, Eva; Boldizsar, Imre; Toth, Attila; Atlason, Palmi T; Molnar, Elek; Vilagi, Ildiko
Lignans are biologically active phenolic compounds related to lignin, produced in different plants. Arctigenin, a dibenzylbutyrolactone-type lignan, has been used as a neuroprotective agent for the treatment of encephalitis. Previous studies of cultured rat cerebral cortical neurones raised the possibility that arctigenin inhibits kainate-induced excitotoxicity. The aims of the present study were: 1) to analyse the effect of arctigenin on normal synaptic activity in ex vivo brain slices, 2) t...
Borbély, Sándor; Jócsák, Gergely; Moldován, Kinga; Sedlák, Éva; Preininger, Éva; Boldizsár, Imre; Tóth, Attila; Atlason, Palmi T; Molnár, Elek; Világi, Ildikó
Lignans are biologically active phenolic compounds related to lignin, produced in different plants. Arctigenin, a dibenzylbutyrolactone-type lignan, has been used as a neuroprotective agent for the treatment of encephalitis. Previous studies of cultured rat cerebral cortical neurones raised the possibility that arctigenin inhibits kainate-induced excitotoxicity. The aims of the present study were: 1) to analyse the effect of arctigenin on normal synaptic activity in ex vivo brain slices, 2) to determine its receptor binding properties and test the effect of arctigenin on AMPA/kainate receptor activation and 3) to establish its effects on neuronal activity in vivo. Arctigenin inhibited glutamatergic transmission and reduced the evoked field responses. The inhibitory effect of arctigenin on the evoked field responses proved to be substantially dose dependent. Our results indicate that arctigenin exerts its effects under physiological conditions and not only on hyper-excited neurons. Furthermore, arctigenin can cross the blood-brain barrier and in the brain it interacts with kainate sensitive ionotropic glutamate receptors. These results indicate that arctigenin is a potentially useful new pharmacological tool for the inhibition of glutamate-evoked responses in the central nervous system in vivo. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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.
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.
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.
Beniczky, Sándor; Jovanovic, Marina; Atkins, Mary Doreen
Transient suppression of the motor cortex and of the speech areas cause well-described postictal phenomena following seizures involving the respective cortical areas. Pain is a rare symptom in epileptic seizures. We present a patient with painful tonic seizures in the left leg. The amplitude...
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.
C.P.J. de Kock (Christiaan); B. Sakmann (Bert)
textabstractHigh frequency (≥ 100 Hz) bursts of action potentials (APs) generated by neocortical neurons are thought to increase information content and, through back-propagation, to influence synaptic integration and efficacy in distal dendritic compartments. It was recently shown in acute slice
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.
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.
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.
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
Full Text Available The details of contextual or episodic memories are lost and generalized with the passage of time. Proper generalization may underlie the formation and assimilation of semantic memories and enable animals to adapt to ever-changing environments, whereas overgeneralization of fear memory evokes maladaptive fear responses to harmless stimuli, which is a symptom of anxiety disorders such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD. To understand the neural basis of fear memory generalization, we investigated the patterns of neuronal ensemble reactivation during memory retrieval when contextual fear memory expression is generalized using transgenic mice that allowed us to visualize specific neuronal ensembles activated during memory encoding and retrieval. We found preferential reactivations of neuronal ensembles in the primary somatosensory cortex, when mice were returned to the conditioned context to retrieve their memory 1 day after conditioning. In the hippocampal dentate gyrus (DG, exclusively separated ensemble reactivation was observed when mice were exposed to a novel context. These results suggest that the DG as well as the somatosensory cortex were likely to distinguish the two different contexts at the ensemble activity level when memory is not generalized at the behavioral level. However, 9 days after conditioning when animals exhibited generalized fear, the unique reactivation pattern in the DG, but not in the somatosensory cortex, was lost. Our results suggest that the alternations in the ensemble representation within the DG, or in upstream structures that link the sensory cortex to the hippocampus, may underlie generalized contextual fear memory expression.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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
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.
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.
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
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.
Full Text Available Intraperitoneal transplantation of human umbilical cord blood (hUCB cells has been shown to reduce sensorimotor deficits after hypoxic ischemic brain injury in neonatal rats. However, the neuronal correlate of the functional recovery and how such a treatment enforces plastic remodelling at the level of neural processing remains elusive. Here we show by in-vivo recordings that hUCB cells have the capability of ameliorating the injury-related impairment of neural processing in primary somatosensory cortex. Intact cortical processing depends on a delicate balance of inhibitory and excitatory transmission, which is disturbed after injury. We found that the dimensions of cortical maps and receptive fields, which are significantly altered after injury, were largely restored. Additionally, the lesion induced hyperexcitability was no longer observed in hUCB treated animals as indicated by a paired-pulse behaviour resembling that observed in control animals. The beneficial effects on cortical processing were reflected in an almost complete recovery of sensorimotor behaviour. Our results demonstrate that hUCB cells reinstall the way central neurons process information by normalizing inhibitory and excitatory processes. We propose that the intermediate level of cortical processing will become relevant as a new stage to investigate efficacy and mechanisms of cell therapy in the treatment of brain injury.
Song, Weiguo; Francis, Joseph Thachil
Motor output mostly depends on sensory input, which also can be affected by action. To further our understanding of how tactile information is processed in the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) in dynamic environments, we recorded neural responses to tactile stimulation of the hand in three awake monkeys under arm/hand passive movement and rest. We found that neurons generally responded to tactile stimulation under both conditions and were modulated by movement: with a higher baseline firing rate, a suppressed peak rate, and a smaller dynamic range during passive movement than during rest, while the area under the response curve was stable across these two states. By using an information theory-based method, the mutual information between tactile stimulation and neural responses was quantified with rate and spatial coding models under the two conditions. The two potential encoding models showed different contributions depending on behavioral contexts. Tactile information encoded with rate coding from individual units was lower than spatial coding of unit pairs, especially during movement; however, spatial coding had redundant information between unit pairs. Passive movement regulated the mutual information, and such regulation might play different roles depending on the encoding strategies used. The underlying mechanisms of our observation most likely come from a bottom-up strategy, where neurons in S1 were regulated through the activation of the peripheral tactile/proprioceptive receptors and the interactions between these different types of information.
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.
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.
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
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
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.)
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.
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
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.
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.
Langdon, A.J.; Boonstra, T.W.; Breakspear, M.
Cortical population responses to sensory input arise from the interaction between external stimuli and the intrinsic dynamics of the densely interconnected neuronal population. Although there is a large body of knowledge regarding single neuron responses to periodic stimuli, responses at the scale
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...
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.
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.
Kielar, Catherine; Maddox, Lucy; Bible, Ellen; Pontikis, Charlie C; Macauley, Shannon L; Griffey, Megan A; Wong, Michael; Sands, Mark S; Cooper, Jonathan D
Infantile neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis (INCL) is caused by deficiency of the lysosomal enzyme, palmitoyl protein thioesterase 1 (PPT1). We have investigated the onset and progression of pathological changes in Ppt1 deficient mice (Ppt1-/-) and the development of their seizure phenotype. Surprisingly, cortical atrophy and neuron loss occurred only late in disease progression but were preceded by localized astrocytosis within individual thalamic nuclei and the progressive loss of thalamic neurons that relay different sensory modalities to the cortex. This thalamic neuron loss occurred first within the visual system and only subsequently in auditory and somatosensory relay nuclei or the inhibitory reticular thalamic nucleus. The loss of granule neurons and GABAergic interneurons followed in each corresponding cortical region, before the onset of seizure activity. These findings provide novel evidence for successive neuron loss within the thalamus and cortex in Ppt1-/- mice, revealing the thalamus as an important early focus of INCL pathogenesis.
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.
Kunori, Nobuo; Takashima, Ichiro
The motor cortex of rats contains two forelimb motor areas; the caudal forelimb area (CFA) and the rostral forelimb area (RFA). Although the RFA is thought to correspond to the premotor and/or supplementary motor cortices of primates, which are higher-order motor areas that receive somatosensory inputs, it is unknown whether the RFA of rats receives somatosensory inputs in the same manner. To investigate this issue, voltage-sensitive dye (VSD) imaging was used to assess the motor cortex in rats following a brief electrical stimulation of the forelimb. This procedure was followed by intracortical microstimulation (ICMS) mapping to identify the motor representations in the imaged cortex. The combined use of VSD imaging and ICMS revealed that both the CFA and RFA received excitatory synaptic inputs after forelimb stimulation. Further evaluation of the sensory input pathway to the RFA revealed that the forelimb-evoked RFA response was abolished either by the pharmacological inactivation of the CFA or a cortical transection between the CFA and RFA. These results suggest that forelimb-related sensory inputs would be transmitted to the RFA from the CFA via the cortico-cortical pathway. Thus, the present findings imply that sensory information processed in the RFA may be used for the generation of coordinated forelimb movements, which would be similar to the function of the higher-order motor cortex in primates. © 2016 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Linsenmeier, Robert A; Aksenov, Daniil P; Faber, Holden M; Makar, Peter; Wyrwicz, Alice M
In many tissues, PO2 fluctuates spontaneously with amplitudes of a few mmHg. Here we further characterized these oscillations. PO2 recordings were made from the whisker barrel cortex of six rabbits with acutely or chronically placed polarographic electrodes. Measurements were made while rabbits were awake and while anesthetized with isoflurane, during air breathing, and during 100% oxygen inspiration. In awake rabbits, 90% of the power was between 0 and 20 cycles per minute (cpm), not uniformly distributed over this range, but with a peak frequently near 10 cpm. This was much slower than heart or respiratory rhythms and is similar to the frequency content observed in other tissues. During hyperoxia, total power was higher than during air-breathing, and the dominant frequencies tended to shift toward lower values (0-10 cpm). These observations suggest that at least the lower frequency fluctuations represent efforts by the circulation to regulate local PO2. There were no consistent changes in total power during 0.5 or 1.5% isoflurane anesthesia, but the power shifted to lower frequencies. Thus, both hyperoxia and anesthesia cause characteristic, but distinct, changes in spontaneous fluctuations. These PO2 fluctuations may be caused by vasomotion, but other factors cannot be ruled out.
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.
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.
Ince, Robin A A; Montani, Fernando; Panzeri, Stefano; Arabzadeh, Ehsan; Diamond, Mathew E
In order to understand how populations of neurons encode information about external correlates, it is important to develop minimal models of the probability of neural population responses which capture all the salient changes of neural responses with stimuli. In this context, it is particularly useful to determine whether interactions among neurons responding to stimuli can be described by a pairwise interaction model, or whether a higher order interaction model is needed. To address this question, we compared real neural population activity obtained from the rat somatosensory cortex to maximum-entropy models which take into account only interaction of up any given order. By performing these comparisons, we found that interactions of order two were sufficient to explain a large amount of observed stimulus-response distributions, but not all of them. Triple-wise interactions were necessary to fully explain the data. We then used Shannon information to compute the impact of high order correlations on the amount of somatosensory information transmitted by the neural population. We found that correlations of order two gave a good approximation of information carried by the neural population, within 4% of the true value. Third order correlations gave an even better approximation, within 2% of the true value. Taken together, these results suggest that higher order interactions exist and shape the dynamics of cortical networks, but play a quantitatively minor role in determining the information capacity of neural populations.
Ince, Robin A A [Faculty of Life Science, University of Manchester, 3.431 Stopford Building, Oxford Road, Manchester M13 9PL (United Kingdom); Montani, Fernando; Panzeri, Stefano [Robotics, Brain, and Cognitive Sciences Department, Italian Institute of Technology, Via Morego 30, 16163 Genova (Italy); Arabzadeh, Ehsan [School of Psychology, University of New South Wales, Sydney, New South Wales (Australia); Diamond, Mathew E, E-mail: email@example.com [Cognitive Neuroscience Sector, International School for Advanced Studies, Trieste (Italy) and the SISSA Unit, Italian Institute of Technology, Trieste (Italy)
In order to understand how populations of neurons encode information about external correlates, it is important to develop minimal models of the probability of neural population responses which capture all the salient changes of neural responses with stimuli. In this context, it is particularly useful to determine whether interactions among neurons responding to stimuli can be described by a pairwise interaction model, or whether a higher order interaction model is needed. To address this question, we compared real neural population activity obtained from the rat somatosensory cortex to maximum-entropy models which take into account only interaction of up any given order. By performing these comparisons, we found that interactions of order two were sufficient to explain a large amount of observed stimulus-response distributions, but not all of them. Triple-wise interactions were necessary to fully explain the data. We then used Shannon information to compute the impact of high order correlations on the amount of somatosensory information transmitted by the neural population. We found that correlations of order two gave a good approximation of information carried by the neural population, within 4% of the true value. Third order correlations gave an even better approximation, within 2% of the true value. Taken together, these results suggest that higher order interactions exist and shape the dynamics of cortical networks, but play a quantitatively minor role in determining the information capacity of neural populations.
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
Watanabe, Kaori; Furumizo, Yuki; Usui, Tadao; Hattori, Yukako; Uemura, Tadashi
Suboptimal nutrition imposes developmental constraints on infant animals, which marshal adaptive responses to eventually become mature adults. Such responses are mounted at multiple levels from systemic to cellular. At the cellular level, the underlying mechanisms of cell proliferation control have been intensively studied. However, less is known about how growth of postmitotic and morphologically complex cells, such as neurons, is controlled by nutritional status. We address this question using Class I and Class IV dendritic arborization neurons in Drosophila larvae. Class IV neurons have been shown to sense nociceptive thermal, mechanical and light stimuli, whereas Class I neurons are proprioceptors. We reared larvae on diets with different protein and carbohydrate content throughout larval stages and examined how morphologies of Class I or Class IV neurons were affected. Dendritic arbors of Class IV neurons became more complex when larvae were reared on a low-yeast diet, which contains lower amounts of amino acids and other ingredients, compared to a high-yeast diet. In contrast, such low-yeast-dependent hyperarborization was not seen in Class I neurons. The physiological and metabolic implications of the hyperarborization phenotype are discussed in relation to a recent hypothesis that Class IV neurons sense protein-deficient stress and to our characterization of how the dietary yeast contents impacted larval metabolism. © 2016 Molecular Biology Society of Japan and John Wiley & Sons Australia, Ltd.
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: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.04660.001 PMID:25525749
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.
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
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.
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.
Abstract Synaptic activity in vivo can potentially alter the integration properties of neurons. Using recordings in awake mice, we targeted somatosensory layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons and compared neuronal properties with those from slices. Pyramidal cells in vivo had lower resistance and gain values, as well as broader spikes and increased spike frequency adaptation compared to the same cells in slices. Increasing conductance in neurons using dynamic clamp to levels observed in vivo, however, did not lessen the differences between in vivo and slice conditions. Further, local application of tetrodotoxin (TTX) in vivo blocked synaptic-mediated membrane voltage fluctuations but had little impact on pyramidal cell membrane input resistance and time constant values. Differences in electrophysiological properties of layer 2/3 neurons in mouse somatosensory cortex, therefore, stem from intrinsic sources separate from synaptic-mediated membrane voltage fluctuations. PMID:29662946
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.
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
Nakata, Hiroki; Sakamoto, Kiwako; Kakigi, Ryusuke
Recent studies have shown that meditation inhibits or relieves pain perception. To clarify the underlying mechanisms for this phenomenon, neuroimaging methods, such as functional magnetic resonance imaging, and neurophysiological methods, such as magnetoencephalography and electroencephalography, have been used. However, it has been difficult to interpret the results, because there is some paradoxical evidence. For example, some studies reported increased neural responses to pain stimulation during meditation in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and insula, whereas others showed a decrease in these regions. There have been inconsistent findings to date. Moreover, in general, since the activities of the ACC and insula are correlated with pain perception, the increase in neural activities during meditation would be related to the enhancement of pain perception rather than its reduction. These contradictions might directly contribute to the ‘mystery of meditation.’ In this review, we presented previous findings for brain regions during meditation and the anatomical changes that occurred in the brain with long-term meditation training. We then discussed the findings of previous studies that examined pain-related neural activity during meditation. We also described the brain mechanisms responsible for pain relief during meditation, and possible reasons for paradoxical evidence among previous studies. By thoroughly overviewing previous findings, we hypothesized that meditation reduces pain-related neural activity in the ACC, insula, secondary somatosensory cortex, and thalamus. We suggest that the characteristics of the modulation of this activity may depend on the kind of meditation and/or number of years of experience of meditation, which were associated with paradoxical findings among previous studies that investigated pain-related neural activities during meditation. PMID:25566158
Full Text Available Age-related deficiency in the top-down modulation of cognitive inhibition has been extensively documented, whereas the effects of age on a bottom-up or automatic operation of inhibitory function were less investigated. It is unknown that whether the older adults (OA’ reduced behavioral performance and neural responses are due to the insufficient bottom-up processes. Compared to behavioral assessments which have been widely used to examine the top-down control of response inhibition, electrophysiological recordings are more suitable to probe the early-stage processes of automatic inhibitory function. Sensory gating (SG, a phenomenon of attenuated neural response to the second identical stimulus in a paired-pulse paradigm, is an indicator to assess automatic inhibitory function of the sensory cortex. On the other hand, electricity-induced beta rebound oscillation in a single-pulse paradigm reflects cortical inhibition of the motor cortex. From the neurophysiological perspective, SG and beta rebound oscillation are replicable indicators to examine the automatic inhibitory function of human sensorimotor cortices. Thus, the present study aimed to use a whole-head magnetoencephalography (MEG to investigate the age-related alterations of SG function in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI and of beta rebound oscillation in the primary motor cortex (MI in 17 healthy younger and 15 older adults. The Stimulus 2/Stimulus 1 (S2/S1 amplitude ratio in response to the paired-pulse electrical stimulation to the left median nerve was used to evaluate the automatic inhibitory function of SI, and the beta rebound response in the single-pulse paradigm was used to evaluate the automatic inhibitory function of MI. Although there were no significant age-related differences found in the SI SG ratios, the MI beta rebound power was reduced and peak latency was prolonged in the OA. Furthermore, significant association between the SI SG ratio and the MI beta rebound
Cheng, Chia-Hsiung; Lin, Mei-Yin; Yang, Shiou-Han
Age-related deficiency in the top-down modulation of cognitive inhibition has been extensively documented, whereas the effects of age on a bottom-up or automatic operation of inhibitory function were less investigated. It is unknown that whether the older adults (OA)’ reduced behavioral performance and neural responses are due to the insufficient bottom-up processes. Compared to behavioral assessments which have been widely used to examine the top-down control of response inhibition, electrophysiological recordings are more suitable to probe the early-stage processes of automatic inhibitory function. Sensory gating (SG), a phenomenon of attenuated neural response to the second identical stimulus in a paired-pulse paradigm, is an indicator to assess automatic inhibitory function of the sensory cortex. On the other hand, electricity-induced beta rebound oscillation in a single-pulse paradigm reflects cortical inhibition of the motor cortex. From the neurophysiological perspective, SG and beta rebound oscillation are replicable indicators to examine the automatic inhibitory function of human sensorimotor cortices. Thus, the present study aimed to use a whole-head magnetoencephalography (MEG) to investigate the age-related alterations of SG function in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI) and of beta rebound oscillation in the primary motor cortex (MI) in 17 healthy younger and 15 older adults. The Stimulus 2/Stimulus 1 (S2/S1) amplitude ratio in response to the paired-pulse electrical stimulation to the left median nerve was used to evaluate the automatic inhibitory function of SI, and the beta rebound response in the single-pulse paradigm was used to evaluate the automatic inhibitory function of MI. Although there were no significant age-related differences found in the SI SG ratios, the MI beta rebound power was reduced and peak latency was prolonged in the OA. Furthermore, significant association between the SI SG ratio and the MI beta rebound power, which was
van Ede, Freek; de Lange, Floris P; Maris, Eric
Stimulus anticipation improves perception. To account for this improvement, we investigated how stimulus processing is altered by anticipation. In contrast to a large body of previous work, we employed a demanding perceptual task and investigated sensory responses that occur beyond early evoked activity in contralateral primary sensory areas: Stimulus-induced modulations of neural oscillations. For this, we recorded magnetoencephalography in 19 humans while they performed a cued tactile identification task involving the identification of either a proximal or a distal stimulation on the fingertips. We varied the cue-target interval between 0 and 1000 ms such that tactile targets occurred at various degrees of anticipation. This allowed us to investigate the influence of anticipation on stimulus processing in a parametric fashion. We observed that anticipation increases the stimulus-induced response (suppression of beta-band oscillations) originating from the ipsilateral primary somatosensory cortex. This occurs in the period in which the tactile memory trace is analyzed and is correlated with the anticipation-induced improvement in tactile perception. We propose that this ipsilateral response indicates distributed processing across bilateral primary sensory cortices, of which the extent increases with anticipation. This constitutes a new and potentially important mechanism contributing to perception and its improvement following anticipation. © The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bolognini, Nadia; Rossetti, Angela; Maravita, Angelo; Miniussi, Carlo
Recent studies suggest the existence of a visuo-tactile mirror system, comprising the primary (SI) and secondary (SII) somatosensory cortices, which matches observed touch with felt touch. Here, repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) was used to determine whether SI or SII play a functional role in the visual processing of tactile events. Healthy participants performed a visual discrimination task with tactile stimuli (a finger touching a hand) and a control task (a finger moving without touching). During both tasks, rTMS was applied over either SI or SII, and to the occipital cortex. rTMS over SI selectively reduced subject performance for interpreting whether a contralateral visual tactile stimulus contains a tactile event, whereas SII stimulation impaired visual processing regardless of the tactile component. These findings provide evidence for a multimodal sensory-motor system with mirror properties, where somatic and visual properties of action converge. SI, a cortical area traditionally viewed as modality-specific, is selectively implicated in the visual processing of touch. These results are in line with the existence of a sensory mirror system mediating the embodied simulation concept. Copyright © 2010 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
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. PMID:24392273
Melanie A Gainey
Full Text Available Inhibitory synapse development in sensory neocortex is experience-dependent, with sustained sensory deprivation yielding fewer and weaker inhibitory synapses. Whether this represents arrest of synapse maturation, or a more complex set of processes, is unclear. To test this, we measured the dynamics of inhibitory synapse development in layer 4 of rat somatosensory cortex (S1 during continuous whisker deprivation from postnatal day 7, and in age-matched controls. In deprived columns, spontaneous miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents (mIPSCs and evoked IPSCs developed normally until P15, when IPSC amplitude transiently decreased, recovering by P16 despite ongoing deprivation. IPSCs remained normal until P22, when a second, sustained phase of weakening began. Delaying deprivation onset by 5 days prevented the P15 weakening. Both early and late phase weakening involved measurable reduction in IPSC amplitude relative to prior time points. Thus, deprivation appears to drive two distinct phases of active IPSC weakening, rather than simple arrest of synapse maturation.
Sánchez-Panchuelo, Rosa-María; Besle, Julien; Mougin, Olivier; Gowland, Penny; Bowtell, Richard; Schluppeck, Denis; Francis, Susan
Ultra-high-field (UHF) MRI is ideally suited for structural and functional imaging of the brain. High-resolution structural MRI can be used to map the anatomical boundaries between functional domains of the brain by identifying changes related to the pattern of myelination within cortical gray matter, opening up the possibility to study the relationship between functional domains and underlying structure in vivo. In a recent study, we demonstrated the correspondence between functional (based on retinotopic mapping) and structural (based on changes in T2(⁎)-weighted images linked to myelination) parcellations of the primary visual cortex (V1) in vivo at 7T (Sanchez-Panchuelo et al., 2012b). Here, we take advantage of the improved BOLD CNR and high spatial resolution achievable at 7T to study regional structural variations across the functionally defined areas within the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) in individual subjects. Using a traveling wave fMRI paradigm to map the internal somatotopic representation of the index, middle, and ring fingers in S1, we were able to identify multiple map reversals at the tip and base, corresponding to the boundaries between Brodmann areas 3a, 3b, 1 and 2. Based on high resolution structural MRI data acquired in the same subjects, we inspected these functionally-parcellated Brodmann areas for differences in cortical thickness and MR contrast measures (magnetization transfer ratio (MTR) and signal intensity in phase sensitive inversion recovery (PSIR) images) that are sensitive to myelination. Consistent area-related differences in cortical thickness and MTR/PSIR measurements were found across subjects. However these measures did not have sufficient sensitivity to allow definition of areal boundaries. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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.
Full Text Available Purpose Prenatal environmental conditions affect the development of the fetus. In the present study, we investigated the effects of exposure to music and noise during pregnancy on neurogenesis and thickness in the motor and somatosensory cortex of rat pups. Methods The pregnant rats in the music-applied group were exposed to 65 dB of comfortable music for 1 hour, once per day, from the 15th day of pregnancy until delivery. The pregnant rats in the noise-applied group were exposed to 95 dB of sound from a supersonic sound machine for 1 hour, once per day, from the 15th day of pregnancy until delivery. After birth, the offspring were left undisturbed together with their mother. The rat pups were sacrificed at 21 days after birth. Results Exposure to music during pregnancy increased neurogenesis in the motor and somatosensory cortex of rat pups. In contrast, rat pups exposed to noise during pregnancy showed decreased neurogenesis and thickness in the motor and somatosensory cortex. Conclusions Our study suggests that music and noise during the developmental period are important factors influencing brain development and urogenital disorders.
Callier, Thierri; Schluter, Erik W.; Tabot, Gregg A.; Miller, Lee E.; Tenore, Francesco V.; Bensmaia, Sliman J.
Objective. The dexterous manipulation of objects depends heavily on somatosensory signals from the limb. The development of anthropomorphic robotic arms and of algorithms to decode intended movements from neuronal signals has stimulated the need to restore somatosensation for use in upper-limb neuroprostheses. Without touch and proprioception, patients have difficulty controlling prosthetic limbs to a level that justifies the required invasive surgery. Intracortical microstimulation (ICMS) through chronically implanted electrode arrays has the potential to provide rich and intuitive sensory feedback. This approach to sensory restoration requires, however, that the evoked sensations remain stable over time. Approach. To investigate the stability of ICMS-evoked sensations, we measured the ability of non-human primates to detect ICMS over experimental sessions that spanned years. Main results. We found that the performance of the animals remained highly stable over time, even when they were tested with electrodes that had experienced extensive stimulation. Significance. Given the stability of the sensations that it evokes, ICMS may thus be a viable approach for sensory restoration.
Hires, Samuel Andrew; Gutnisky, Diego A; Yu, Jianing; O'Connor, Daniel H; Svoboda, Karel
Cortical spike trains often appear noisy, with the timing and number of spikes varying across repetitions of stimuli. Spiking variability can arise from internal (behavioral state, unreliable neurons, or chaotic dynamics in neural circuits) and external (uncontrolled behavior or sensory stimuli) sources. The amount of irreducible internal noise in spike trains, an important constraint on models of cortical networks, has been difficult to estimate, since behavior and brain state must be precisely controlled or tracked. We recorded from excitatory barrel cortex neurons in layer 4 during active behavior, where mice control tactile input through learned whisker movements. Touch was the dominant sensorimotor feature, with >70% spikes occurring in millisecond timescale epochs after touch onset. The variance of touch responses was smaller than expected from Poisson processes, often reaching the theoretical minimum. Layer 4 spike trains thus reflect the millisecond-timescale structure of tactile input with little noise.
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.
Full Text Available Abstract Background Although it has been widely accepted that the primary somatosensory (SI cortex plays an important role in pain perception, it still remains unclear how the nociceptive mechanisms of synaptic transmission occur at the single neuron level. The aim of the present study was to examine whether noxious stimulation applied to the orofacial area evokes the synaptic response of SI neurons in urethane-anesthetized rats using an in vivo patch-clamp technique. Results In vivo whole-cell current-clamp recordings were performed in rat SI neurons (layers III-IV. Twenty-seven out of 63 neurons were identified in the mechanical receptive field of the orofacial area (36 neurons showed no receptive field and they were classified as non-nociceptive (low-threshold mechanoreceptive; 6/27, 22% and nociceptive neurons. Nociceptive neurons were further divided into wide-dynamic range neurons (3/27, 11% and nociceptive-specific neurons (18/27, 67%. In the majority of these neurons, a proportion of the excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs reached the threshold, and then generated random discharges of action potentials. Noxious mechanical stimuli applied to the receptive field elicited a discharge of action potentials on the barrage of EPSPs. In the case of noxious chemical stimulation applied as mustard oil to the orofacial area, the membrane potential shifted depolarization and the rate of spontaneous discharges gradually increased as did the noxious pinch-evoked discharge rates, which were usually associated with potentiated EPSP amplitudes. Conclusions The present study provides evidence that SI neurons in deep layers III-V respond to the temporal summation of EPSPs due to noxious mechanical and chemical stimulation applied to the orofacial area and that these neurons may contribute to the processing of nociceptive information, including hyperalgesia.
Li, Chang-Lin; Li, Kai-Cheng; Wu, Dan; Chen, Yan; Luo, Hao; Zhao, Jing-Rong; Wang, Sa-Shuang; Sun, Ming-Ming; Lu, Ying-Jin; Zhong, Yan-Qing; Hu, Xu-Ye; Hou, Rui; Zhou, Bei-Bei; Bao, Lan; Xiao, Hua-Sheng; Zhang, Xu
Sensory neurons are distinguished by distinct signaling networks and receptive characteristics. Thus, sensory neuron types can be defined by linking transcriptome-based neuron typing with the sensory phenotypes. Here we classify somatosensory neurons of the mouse dorsal root ganglion (DRG) by high-coverage single-cell RNA-sequencing (10 950 ± 1 218 genes per neuron) and neuron size-based hierarchical clustering. Moreover, single DRG neurons responding to cutaneous stimuli are recorded using an in vivo whole-cell patch clamp technique and classified by neuron-type genetic markers. Small diameter DRG neurons are classified into one type of low-threshold mechanoreceptor and five types of mechanoheat nociceptors (MHNs). Each of the MHN types is further categorized into two subtypes. Large DRG neurons are categorized into four types, including neurexophilin 1-expressing MHNs and mechanical nociceptors (MNs) expressing BAI1-associated protein 2-like 1 (Baiap2l1). Mechanoreceptors expressing trafficking protein particle complex 3-like and Baiap2l1-marked MNs are subdivided into two subtypes each. These results provide a new system for cataloging somatosensory neurons and their transcriptome databases. PMID:26691752
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.
Prsa, Mario; Galiñanes, Gregorio L; Huber, Daniel
Neuronal motor commands, whether generating real or neuroprosthetic movements, are shaped by ongoing sensory feedback from the displacement being produced. Here we asked if cortical stimulation could provide artificial feedback during operant conditioning of cortical neurons. Simultaneous two-photon imaging and real-time optogenetic stimulation were used to train mice to activate a single neuron in motor cortex (M1), while continuous feedback of its activity level was provided by proportionally stimulating somatosensory cortex. This artificial signal was necessary to rapidly learn to increase the conditioned activity, detect correct performance, and maintain the learned behavior. Population imaging in M1 revealed that learning-related activity changes are observed in the conditioned cell only, which highlights the functional potential of individual neurons in the neocortex. Our findings demonstrate the capacity of animals to use an artificially induced cortical channel in a behaviorally relevant way and reveal the remarkable speed and specificity at which this can occur. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Viral vectors injected into the mouse brain offer the possibility for localized genetic modifications in a highly controlled manner. Lentivector injection into mouse neocortex transduces cells within a diameter of approximately 200µm, which closely matches the lateral scale of a column in barrel cortex. The depth and volume of the injection determines which cortical layer is transduced. Furthermore, transduced gene expression from the lentivector can be limited to predominantly pyramidal neurons by using a 1.3kb fragment of the αCaMKII promoter. This technique therefore allows genetic manipulation of a specific cell type in defined columns and layers of the neocortex. By expressing Cre recombinase from such a lentivector in gene-targeted mice carrying a floxed gene, highly specific genetic lesions can be induced. Here, we demonstrate the utility of this approach by specifically knocking out NMDA receptors (NMDARs in pyramidal neurons in the somatosensory barrel cortex of gene-targeted mice carrying floxed NMDAR 1 genes. Neurons transduced with lentivector encoding GFP and Cre recombinase exhibit not only reductions in NMDAR 1 mRNA levels, but reduced NMDAR-dependent currents and pairing-induced synaptic potentiation. This technique for knockout of NMDARs in a cell type, column- and layer-specific manner in the mouse somatosensory cortex may help further our understanding of the functional roles of NMDARs in vivo during sensory perception and learning.
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
Sun, Xue-Zhi; Takahashi, Sentaro; Cui, Chun; Zhang, Rui; Sakata-Haga, Hiromi; Sawada, Kazuhiko; Fukui, Yoshihiro
Neuronal migration is the critical cellular process which initiates histogenesis of cerebral cortex. Migration involves a series of complex cell interactions and transformation. After completing their final mitosis, neurons migrate from the ventricular zone into the cortical plate, and then establish neuronal lamina and settle onto the outermost layer, forming an “inside-out” gradient of maturation. This process is guided by radial glial fibers, requires proper receptors, ligands, other unkno...
M L Morales-Botello
Full Text Available We employed voltage-sensitive dye (VSD imaging to investigate the spatio-temporal dynamics of the responses of the supragranular somatosensory cortex to stimulation of the four paws in urethane-anesthetized rats. We obtained the following main results. (1 Stimulation of the contralateral forepaw evoked VSD responses with greater amplitude and smaller latency than stimulation of the contralateral hindpaw, and ipsilateral VSD responses had a lower amplitude and greater latency than contralateral responses. (2 While the contralateral stimulation initially activated only one focus, the ipsilateral stimulation initially activated two foci: one focus was typically medial to the focus activated by contralateral stimulation and was stereotaxically localized in the motor cortex; the other focus was typically posterior to the focus activated by contralateral stimulation and was stereotaxically localized in the somatosensory cortex. (3 Forepaw and hindpaw somatosensory stimuli activated large areas of the sensorimotor cortex, well beyond the forepaw and hindpaw somatosensory areas of classical somatotopic maps, and forepaw stimuli activated larger cortical areas with greater activation velocity than hindpaw stimuli. (4 Stimulation of the forepaw and hindpaw evoked different cortical activation dynamics: forepaw responses displayed a clear medial directionality, whereas hindpaw responses were much more uniform in all directions. In conclusion, this work offers a complete spatio-temporal map of the supragranular VSD cortical activation in response to stimulation of the paws, showing important somatotopic differences between contralateral and ipsilateral maps as well as differences in the spatio-temporal activation dynamics in response to forepaw and hindpaw stimuli.
Canto, C.B.; Witter, M.P.
The lateral entorhinal cortex (LEC) provides a major cortical input to the hippocampal formation, equaling that of the medial entorhinal cortex (MEC). To understand the functional contributions made by LEC, basic knowledge of individual neurons, in the context of the intrinsic network, is needed.
Schäfer, Katharina; Blankenburg, Felix; Kupers, Ron
that the negative BOLD signal is associated with functional inhibition. Electrical stimulation of the median nerve at 7Hz evoked robust negative BOLD signals in the primary somatosensory cortex (SI) ipsilateral to stimulation, and positive BOLD signals in contralateral SI. The negative BOLD signal in ipsilateral SI......) at the ipsilateral finger during concomitant stimulation of the contralateral median nerve increased significantly, suggesting augmented functional inhibition. Since the CPT in the ipsilateral hallux did not significantly change in response to median nerve stimulation, it is more likely that the CPT......-increase for the finger is due to functional inhibition (Kastrup et al., 2008) than to changes in selective attention. In conclusion, our data provide evidence that stimulus-induced reductions in relative rCBF may underlie the negative BOLD signal, which in turn may reflect increments in functional inhibition....
Sczesny-Kaiser, Matthias; Höffken, Oliver; Aach, Mirko; Cruciger, Oliver; Grasmücke, Dennis; Meindl, Renate; Schildhauer, Thomas A; Schwenkreis, Peter; Tegenthoff, Martin
Reorganization in the sensorimotor cortex accompanied by increased excitability and enlarged body representations is a consequence of spinal cord injury (SCI). Robotic-assisted bodyweight supported treadmill training (BWSTT) was hypothesized to induce reorganization and improve walking function. To assess whether BWSTT with hybrid assistive limb® (HAL®) exoskeleton affects cortical excitability in the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) in SCI patients, as measured by paired-pulse somatosensory evoked potentials (ppSEP) stimulated above the level of injury. Eleven SCI patients took part in HAL® assisted BWSTT for 3 months. PpSEP were conducted before and after this training period, where the amplitude ratios (SEP amplitude following double pulses - SEP amplitude following single pulses) were assessed and compared to eleven healthy control subjects. To assess improvement in walking function, we used the 10-m walk test, timed-up-and-go test, the 6-min walk test, and the lower extremity motor score. PpSEPs were significantly increased in SCI patients as compared to controls at baseline. Following training, ppSEPs were increased from baseline and no longer significantly differed from controls. Walking parameters also showed significant improvements, yet there was no significant correlation between ppSEP measures and walking parameters. The findings suggest that robotic-assisted BWSTT with HAL® in SCI patients is capable of inducing cortical plasticity following highly repetitive, active locomotive use of paretic legs. While there was no significant correlation of excitability with walking parameters, brain areas other than S1 might reflect improvement of walking functions. EEG and neuroimaging studies may provide further information about supraspinal plastic processes and foci in SCI rehabilitation.
SUN, Xue-Zhi; TAKAHASHI, Sentaro; GUI, Chun; ZHANG, Rui; KOGA, Kazuo; NOUYE, Minoru; MURATA, Yoshiharu
Neuronal cell migration is one of the most significant features during cortical development. After final mitosis, neurons migrate from the ventricular zone into the cortical plate, and then establish neuronal lamina and settle onto the outermost layer, forming an "inside-out" gradient of maturation. Neuronal migration is guided by radial glial fibers and also needs proper receptors, ligands, and other unknown extracellular factors, requests local signaling (e.g. some emitted by the Cajal-Retz...
Xerri, C; Coq, J O; Merzenich, M M; Jenkins, W M
In a first study, the representations of skin surfaces of the hand in the primary somatosensory cortex, area 3b, were reconstructed in owl monkeys and squirrel monkeys trained to pick up food pellets from small, shallow wells, a task which required skilled use of the digits. Training sessions included limited manual exercise over a total period of a few hours of practice. From an early clumsy performance in which many retrieval attempts were required for each successful pellet retrieval, the monkeys exhibited a gradual improvement. Typically, the animals used various combinations of digits before developing a successful retrieval strategy. As the behavior came to be stereotyped, monkeys consistently engaged surfaces of the distal phalanges of one or two digits in the palpation and capture of food pellets from the smallest wells. Microelectrode mapping of the hand surfaces revealed that the glabrous skin of the fingertips predominantly involved in the dexterity task was represented over topographically expanded cortical sectors. Furthermore, cutaneous receptive fields which covered the most frequently stimulated digital tip surfaces were less than half as large as were those representing the corresponding surfaces of control digits. In a second series of experiments, Long-Evans rats were assigned to environments promoting differential tactile experience (standard, enriched, and impoverished) for 80 to 115 days from the time of weaning. A fourth group of young adult rat experienced a severe restriction of forepaw exploratory movement for either 7 or 15 days. Cortical maps derived in the primary somatosensory cortex showed that environmental enrichment induced a substantial enlargement of the cutaneous forepaw representation, and improved its spatial resolution (smaller glabrous receptive fields). In contrast, tactile impoverishment resulted in a degradation of the forepaw representation that was characterized by larger cutaneous receptive fields and the emergence of
Canto, C.B.; Witter, M.P.
Principal neurons in different medial entorhinal cortex (MEC) layers show variations in spatial modulation that stabilize between 15 and 30 days postnatally. These in vivo variations are likely due to differences in intrinsic membrane properties and integrative capacities of neurons. The latter
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.
Nimchinsky, E. A.; Vogt, B. A.; Morrison, J. H.; Hof, P. R.; Bloom, F. E. (Principal Investigator)
The human anterior cingulate cortex is distinguished by the presence of an unusual cell type, a large spindle neuron in layer Vb. This cell has been noted numerous times in the historical literature but has not been studied with modern neuroanatomic techniques. For instance, details regarding the neuronal class to which these cells belong and regarding their precise distribution along both ventrodorsal and anteroposterior axes of the cingulate gyrus are still lacking. In the present study, morphological features and the anatomic distribution of this cell type were studied using computer-assisted mapping and immunocytochemical techniques. Spindle neurons are restricted to the subfields of the anterior cingulate cortex (Brodmann's area 24), exhibiting a greater density in anterior portions of this area than in posterior portions, and tapering off in the transition zone between anterior and posterior cingulate cortex. Furthermore, a majority of the spindle cells at any level is located in subarea 24b on the gyral surface. Immunocytochemical analysis revealed that the neurofilament protein triple was present in a large percentage of these neurons and that they did not contain calcium-binding proteins. Injections of the carbocyanine dye DiI into the cingulum bundle revealed that these cells are projection neurons. Finally, spindle cells were consistently affected in Alzheimer's disease cases, with an overall loss of about 60%. Taken together, these observations indicate that the spindle cells of the human cingulate cortex represent a morphological subpopulation of pyramidal neurons whose restricted distribution may be associated with functionally distinct areas.
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
Garion, Liora; Dubin, Uri; Rubin, Yoav; Khateb, Mohamed; Schiller, Yitzhak; Azouz, Rony; Schiller, Jackie
Texture discrimination is a fundamental function of somatosensory systems, yet the manner by which texture is coded and spatially represented in the barrel cortex are largely unknown. Using in vivo two-photon calcium imaging in the rat barrel cortex during artificial whisking against different surface coarseness or controlled passive whisker vibrations simulating different coarseness, we show that layer 2–3 neurons within barrel boundaries differentially respond to specific texture coarsenesses, while only a minority of neurons responded monotonically with increased or decreased surface coarseness. Neurons with similar preferred texture coarseness were spatially clustered. Multi-contact single unit recordings showed a vertical columnar organization of texture coarseness preference in layer 2–3. These findings indicate that layer 2–3 neurons perform high hierarchical processing of tactile information, with surface coarseness embodied by distinct neuronal subpopulations that are spatially mapped onto the barrel cortex. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.03405.001 PMID:25233151
Nagy, Bernadett; Szabó, István; Papp, Szilárd; Takács, Gábor; Szalay, Csaba; Karádi, Zoltán
The mediodorsal prefrontal cortex (mdPFC), a key structure of the limbic neural circuitry, plays important roles in the central regulation of feeding. As an integrant part of the forebrain dopamine (DA) system, it performs complex roles via interconnections with various brain areas where glucose-monitoring (GM) neurons have been identified. The main goal of the present experiments was to examine whether similar GM neurons exist in the mediodorsal prefrontal cortex. To search for such chemosensory cells here, and to estimate their involvement in the DA circuitry, extracellular single neuron activity of the mediodorsal prefrontal cortex of anesthetized Wistar and Sprague-Dawley rats was recorded by means of tungsten wire multibarreled glass microelectrodes during microelectrophoretic administration of d-glucose and DA. One fourth of the neurons tested changed in firing rate in response to glucose, thus, proved to be elements of the forebrain GM neural network. DA responsive neurons in the mdPFC were found to represent similar proportion of all cells; the glucose-excited units were shown to display excitatory whereas the glucose-inhibited neurons were demonstrated to exert mainly inhibitory responses to dopamine. The glucose-monitoring neurons of the mdPFC and their distinct DA sensitivity are suggested to be of particular significance in adaptive processes of the central feeding control. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Okun, Michael; Steinmetz, Nicholas; Cossell, Lee; Iacaruso, M Florencia; Ko, Ho; Barthó, Péter; Moore, Tirin; Hofer, Sonja B; Mrsic-Flogel, Thomas D; Carandini, Matteo; Harris, Kenneth D
A large population of neurons can, in principle, produce an astronomical number of distinct firing patterns. In cortex, however, these patterns lie in a space of lower dimension, as if individual neurons were "obedient members of a huge orchestra". Here we use recordings from the visual cortex of mouse (Mus musculus) and monkey (Macaca mulatta) to investigate the relationship between individual neurons and the population, and to establish the underlying circuit mechanisms. We show that neighbouring neurons can differ in their coupling to the overall firing of the population, ranging from strongly coupled 'choristers' to weakly coupled 'soloists'. Population coupling is largely independent of sensory preferences, and it is a fixed cellular attribute, invariant to stimulus conditions. Neurons with high population coupling are more strongly affected by non-sensory behavioural variables such as motor intention. Population coupling reflects a causal relationship, predicting the response of a neuron to optogenetically driven increases in local activity. Moreover, population coupling indicates synaptic connectivity; the population coupling of a neuron, measured in vivo, predicted subsequent in vitro estimates of the number of synapses received from its neighbours. Finally, population coupling provides a compact summary of population activity; knowledge of the population couplings of n neurons predicts a substantial portion of their n(2) pairwise correlations. Population coupling therefore represents a novel, simple measure that characterizes the relationship of each neuron to a larger population, explaining seemingly complex network firing patterns in terms of basic circuit variables.
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.
Full Text Available Pain is difficult to assess due to the subjective nature of self-reporting. The lack of objective measures of pain has hampered the development of new treatments as well as the evaluation of current ones. Functional MRI studies of pain have begun to delineate potential brain response signatures that could be used as objective read-outs of pain. Using Diffuse Optical Tomography (DOT, we have shown in the past a distinct DOT signal over the somatosensory cortex to a noxious heat stimulus that could be distinguished from the signal elicited by innocuous mechanical stimuli. Here we further our findings by studying the response to thermal innocuous and noxious stimuli.Innocuous and noxious thermal stimuli were applied to the skin of the face of the first division (ophthalmic of the trigeminal nerve in healthy volunteers (N = 6. Stimuli temperatures were adjusted for each subject to evoke warm (equivalent to a 3/10 and painful hot (7/10 sensations in a verbal rating scale (0/10 = no/max pain. A set of 26 stimuli (5 sec each was applied for each temperature with inter-stimulus intervals varied between 8 and 15 sec using a Peltier thermode. A DOT system was used to capture cortical responses on both sides of the head over the primary somatosensory cortical region (S1. For the innocuous stimuli, group results indicated mainly activation on the contralateral side with a weak ipsilateral response. For the noxious stimuli, bilateral activation was observed with comparable amplitudes on both sides. Furthermore, noxious stimuli produced a temporal biphasic response while innocuous stimuli produced a monophasic response.These results are in accordance with fMRI and our other DOT studies of innocuous mechanical and noxious heat stimuli. The data indicate the differentiation of DOT cortical responses for pain vs. innocuous stimuli that may be useful in assessing objectively acute pain.
Saito, Kei; Otsuru, Naofumi; Inukai, Yasuto; Kojima, Sho; Miyaguchi, Shota; Tsuiki, Shota; Sasaki, Ryoki; Onishi, Hideaki
Selective afferent activation can be used to improve somatosensory function, possibly by altering cortical inhibitory circuit activity. Peripheral electrical stimulation (PES) is widely used to induce selective afferent activation, and its effect may depend on PES intensity. Therefore, we investigated the effects of high- and low-intensity PES applied to the right index finger on tactile discrimination performance and cortical sensory-evoked potential paired-pulse depression (SEP-PPD) in 25 neurologically healthy subjects. In Experiment 1, a grating orientation task (GOT) was performed before and immediately after local high- and low-intensity PES (both delivered as 1-s, 20-Hz trains of 0.2-ms electrical pulses at 5-s intervals). In Experiment 2, PPD of SEP components N20/P25_SEP-PPD and N20_SEP-PPD, respectively, were assessed before and immediately after high- and low-intensity PES. Improved GOT discrimination performance after high-intensity PES (reduced discrimination threshold) was associated with lower baseline performance (higher baseline discrimination threshold). Subjects were classified into low and high (baseline) GOT performance groups. Improved GOT discrimination performance in the low GOT performance group was significantly associated with a greater N20_SEP-PPD decrease (weaker PPD). Subjects were also classified into GOT improvement and GOT decrement groups. High-intensity PES decreased N20_SEP-PPD in the GOT improvement group but increased N20_SEP-PPD in the GOT decrement group. Furthermore, a greater decrease in GOT discrimination threshold was significantly associated with a greater N20_SEP-PPD decrease in the GOT improvement group. These results suggest that high-intensity PES can improve sensory perception in subjects with low baseline function by modulating cortical inhibitory circuits in primary somatosensory cortex. Copyright © 2018 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.
Sun, Xue-Zhi; Takahashi, Sentaro; Cui, Chun; Zhang, Rui; Sakata-Haga, Hiromi; Sawada, Kazuhiko; Fukui, Yoshihiro
Neuronal migration is the critical cellular process which initiates histogenesis of cerebral cortex. Migration involves a series of complex cell interactions and transformation. After completing their final mitosis, neurons migrate from the ventricular zone into the cortical plate, and then establish neuronal lamina and settle onto the outermost layer, forming an "inside-out" gradient of maturation. This process is guided by radial glial fibers, requires proper receptors, ligands, other unknown extracellular factors, and local signaling to stop neuronal migration. This process is also highly sensitive to various physical, chemical and biological agents as well as to genetic mutations. Any disturbance of the normal process may result in neuronal migration disorder. Such neuronal migration disorder is believed as major cause of both gross brain malformation and more special cerebral structural and functional abnormalities in experimental animals and in humans. An increasing number of instructive studies on experimental models and several genetic model systems of neuronal migration disorder have established the foundation of cortex formation and provided deeper insights into the genetic and molecular mechanisms underlying normal and abnormal neuronal migration.
Fardo, Francesca; Auksztulewicz, Ryszard; Allen, Micah
be mapped onto changes in effective connectivity between or within specific neuronal populations, using a canonical microcircuit (CMC) model of hierarchical processing. We thus implemented a CMC within dynamic causal modelling (DCM) for magnetoencephalography in human subjects, to investigate how...
Darian-Smith, Ian; Sugitani, Michio; Heywood, John; Karita, Keishiro; Goodwin, Antony
Single neurons in Brodmann's areas 3b and 1 of the macaque postcentral gyrus discharge when the monkey rubs the contralateral finger pads across a textured surface. Both the finger movement and the spatial pattern of the surface determine this discharge in each cell. The spatial features of the surface are represented unambiguously only in the responses of populations of these neurons, and not in the responses of the constituent cells.
Avivi-Arber, Limor; Lee, Jye-Chang; Sood, Mandeep; Lakschevitz, Flavia; Fung, Michelle; Barashi-Gozal, Maayan; Glogauer, Michael; Sessle, Barry J
Tooth loss is common, and exploring the neuroplastic capacity of the face primary motor cortex (face-M1) and adjacent primary somatosensory cortex (face-S1) is crucial for understanding how subjects adapt to tooth loss and their prosthetic replacement. The aim was to test if functional reorganization of jaw and tongue motor representations in the rat face-M1 and face-S1 occurs following tooth extraction, and if subsequent dental implant placement can reverse this neuroplasticity. Rats (n = 22) had the right maxillary molar teeth extracted under local and general anesthesia. One month later, seven rats had dental implant placement into healed extraction sites. Naive rats (n = 8) received no surgical treatment. Intracortical microstimulation (ICMS) and recording of evoked jaw and tongue electromyographic responses were used to define jaw and tongue motor representations at 1 month (n = 8) or 2 months (n = 7) postextraction, 1 month postimplant placement, and at 1-2 months in naive rats. There were no significant differences across study groups in the onset latencies of the ICMS-evoked responses (P > 0.05), but in comparison with naive rats, tooth extraction caused a significant (P rats. These novel findings suggest that face-M1 and adjacent face-S1 may play a role in adaptive mechanisms related to tooth loss and their replacement with dental implants. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Lew, Caroline Horton; Brown, Chelsea; Bellugi, Ursula; Semendeferi, Katerina
Williams Syndrome (WS) is a rare neurodevelopmental disorder associated with a hemideletion in chromosome 7, which manifests a distinct behavioral phenotype characterized by a hyperaffiliative social drive, in striking contrast to the social avoidance behaviors that are common in Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). MRI studies have observed structural and functional abnormalities in WS cortex, including the prefrontal cortex (PFC), a region implicated in social cognition. This study utilizes the Bellugi Williams Syndrome Brain Collection, a unique resource that comprises the largest WS postmortem brain collection in existence, and is the first to quantitatively examine WS PFC cytoarchitecture. We measured neuron density in layers II/III and V/VI of five cortical areas: PFC areas BA 10 and BA 11, primary motor BA 4, primary somatosensory BA 3, and visual area BA 18 in six matched pairs of WS and typically developing (TD) controls. Neuron density in PFC was lower in WS relative to TD, with layers V/VI demonstrating the largest decrease in density, reaching statistical significance in BA 10. In contrast, BA 3 and BA 18 demonstrated a higher density in WS compared to TD, although this difference was not statistically significant. Neuron density in BA 4 was similar in WS and TD. While other cortical areas were altered in WS, prefrontal areas appeared to be most affected. Neuron density is also altered in the PFC of individuals with ASD. Together these findings suggest that the PFC is targeted in neurodevelopmental disorders associated with sociobehavioral alterations. Autism Res 2017, 10: 99-112. © 2016 International Society for Autism Research, Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 International Society for Autism Research, Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Miller, Cory T; Thomas, A Wren; Nummela, Samuel U; de la Mothe, Lisa A
The role of primate frontal cortex in vocal communication and its significance in language evolution have a controversial history. While evidence indicates that vocalization processing occurs in ventrolateral prefrontal cortex neurons, vocal-motor activity has been conjectured to be primarily subcortical and suggestive of a distinctly different neural architecture from humans. Direct evidence of neural activity during natural vocal communication is limited, as previous studies were performed in chair-restrained animals. Here we recorded the activity of single neurons across multiple regions of prefrontal and premotor cortex while freely moving marmosets engaged in a natural vocal behavior known as antiphonal calling. Our aim was to test whether neurons in marmoset frontal cortex exhibited responses during vocal-signal processing and/or vocal-motor production in the context of active, natural communication. We observed motor-related changes in single neuron activity during vocal production, but relatively weak sensory responses for vocalization processing during this natural behavior. Vocal-motor responses occurred both prior to and during call production and were typically coupled to the timing of each vocalization pulse. Despite the relatively weak sensory responses a population classifier was able to distinguish between neural activity that occurred during presentations of vocalization stimuli that elicited an antiphonal response and those that did not. These findings are suggestive of the role that nonhuman primate frontal cortex neurons play in natural communication and provide an important foundation for more explicit tests of the functional contributions of these neocortical areas during vocal behaviors. Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.
Swadlow, Harvey A
Intracortical inhibition plays a role in shaping sensory cortical receptive fields and is mediated by both feed-forward and feedback mechanisms. Feed-forward inhibition is the faster of the two processes, being generated by inhibitory interneurons driven by monosynaptic thalamocortical (TC) input. In principle, feed-forward inhibition can prevent targeted cortical neurons from ever reaching threshold when TC input is weak. To do so, however, inhibitory interneurons must respond to TC input at...
Abstract Single neurons in the primate lateral prefrontal cortex (LPFC) encode information about the allocation of visual attention and the features of visual stimuli. However, how this compares to the performance of neuronal ensembles at encoding the same information is poorly understood. Here, we recorded the responses of neuronal ensembles in the LPFC of two macaque monkeys while they performed a task that required attending to one of two moving random dot patterns positioned in different hemifields and ignoring the other pattern. We found single units selective for the location of the attended stimulus as well as for its motion direction. To determine the coding of both variables in the population of recorded units, we used a linear classifier and progressively built neuronal ensembles by iteratively adding units according to their individual performance (best single units), or by iteratively adding units based on their contribution to the ensemble performance (best ensemble). For both methods, ensembles of relatively small sizes (n decoding performance relative to individual single units. However, the decoder reached similar performance using fewer neurons with the best ensemble building method compared with the best single units method. Our results indicate that neuronal ensembles within the LPFC encode more information about the attended spatial and nonspatial features of visual stimuli than individual neurons. They further suggest that efficient coding of attention can be achieved by relatively small neuronal ensembles characterized by a certain relationship between signal and noise correlation structures. PMID:29568798
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)
Gentet, L.J.; Kremer, Y.; Taniguchi, H.; Huang, Z.J.; Staiger, J.F.; Petersen, C.C.H.
Neocortical GABAergic neurons have diverse molecular, structural and electrophysiological features, but the functional correlates of this diversity are largely unknown. We found unique membrane potential dynamics of somatostatin-expressing (SOM) neurons in layer 2/3 of the primary somatosensory
Hougaard, Anders; Amin, Faisal Mohammad; Larsson, Henrik B W
The neurological disturbances of migraine aura are caused by transient cortical dysfunction due to waves of spreading depolarization that disrupt neuronal signaling. The effects of these cortical events on intrinsic brain connectivity during attacks of migraine aura have not previously been......-based approach focusing on cortical visual areas and areas involved in migraine pain, and a data-driven independent component analysis approach to detect changes in intrinsic brain signaling during attacks. In addition, we performed the analyses after mirroring the MRI data according to the side of perceived......-sided pain. For aura-side normalized data, we found increased connectivity during attacks between visual area V5 and the lower middle frontal gyrus in the symptomatic hemisphere (peak voxel: P = 0.0194, (x, y, z) = (40, 40, 12). The present study provides evidence of altered intrinsic brain connectivity...
Ulanovsky, Nachum; Las, Liora; Farkas, Dina; Nelken, Israel
Neurons in primary auditory cortex (A1) of cats show strong stimulus-specific adaptation (SSA). In probabilistic settings, in which one stimulus is common and another is rare, responses to common sounds adapt more strongly than responses to rare sounds. This SSA could be a correlate of auditory sensory memory at the level of single A1 neurons. Here we studied adaptation in A1 neurons, using three different probabilistic designs. We showed that SSA has several time scales concurrently, spanning many orders of magnitude, from hundreds of milliseconds to tens of seconds. Similar time scales are known for the auditory memory span of humans, as measured both psychophysically and using evoked potentials. A simple model, with linear dependence on both short-term and long-term stimulus history, provided a good fit to A1 responses. Auditory thalamus neurons did not show SSA, and their responses were poorly fitted by the same model. In addition, SSA increased the proportion of failures in the responses of A1 neurons to the adapting stimulus. Finally, SSA caused a bias in the neuronal responses to unbiased stimuli, enhancing the responses to eccentric stimuli. Therefore, we propose that a major function of SSA in A1 neurons is to encode auditory sensory memory on multiple time scales. This SSA might play a role in stream segregation and in binding of auditory objects over many time scales, a property that is crucial for processing of natural auditory scenes in cats and of speech and music in humans.
Gaucher, Quentin; Huetz, Chloé; Gourévitch, Boris; Laudanski, Jonathan; Occelli, Florian; Edeline, Jean-Marc
A major goal in auditory neuroscience is to characterize how communication sounds are represented at the cortical level. The present review aims at investigating the role of auditory cortex in the processing of speech, bird songs and other vocalizations, which all are spectrally and temporally highly structured sounds. Whereas earlier studies have simply looked for neurons exhibiting higher firing rates to particular conspecific vocalizations over their modified, artificially synthesized versions, more recent studies determined the coding capacity of temporal spike patterns, which are prominent in primary and non-primary areas (and also in non-auditory cortical areas). In several cases, this information seems to be correlated with the behavioral performance of human or animal subjects, suggesting that spike-timing based coding strategies might set the foundations of our perceptive abilities. Also, it is now clear that the responses of auditory cortex neurons are highly nonlinear and that their responses to natural stimuli cannot be predicted from their responses to artificial stimuli such as moving ripples and broadband noises. Since auditory cortex neurons cannot follow rapid fluctuations of the vocalizations envelope, they only respond at specific time points during communication sounds, which can serve as temporal markers for integrating the temporal and spectral processing taking place at subcortical relays. Thus, the temporal sparse code of auditory cortex neurons can be considered as a first step for generating high level representations of communication sounds independent of the acoustic characteristic of these sounds. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled "Communication Sounds and the Brain: New Directions and Perspectives". Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Chen, Li-Jin; Wang, Yueh-Jan; Chen, Jeng-Rung; Tseng, Guo-Fang
Hydrocephalus is a common neurological disorder in children characterized by abnormal dilation of cerebral ventricles as a result of the impairment of cerebrospinal fluid flow or absorption. Clinical presentation of hydrocephalus varies with chronicity and often shows cognitive dysfunction. Here we used a kaolin-induction method in rats and studied the effects of hydrocephalus on cerebral cortex and hippocampus, the two regions highly related to cognition. Hydrocephalus impaired rats' performance in Morris water maze task. Serial three-dimensional reconstruction from sections of the whole brain freshly froze in situ with skull shows that the volumes of both structures were reduced. Morphologically, pyramidal neurons of the somatosensory cortex and hippocampus appear to be distorted. Intracellular dye injection and subsequent three-dimensional reconstruction and analyses revealed that the dendritic arbors of layer III and V cortical pyramid neurons were reduced. The total dendritic length of CA1, but not CA3, pyramidal neurons was also reduced. Dendritic spine densities on both cortical and hippocampal pyramidal neurons were decreased, consistent with our concomitant findings that the expressions of both synaptophysin and postsynaptic density protein 95 were reduced. These cortical and hippocampal changes suggest reductions of excitatory connectivity, which could underlie the learning and memory deficits in hydrocephalus. © 2016 International Society of Neuropathology.
Chow, Stephanie S.; Romo, Ranulfo; Brody, Carlos D.
In a complex world, a sensory cue may prompt different actions in different contexts. A laboratory example of context-dependent sensory processing is the two-stimulus-interval discrimination task. In each trial, a first stimulus (f1) must be stored in short-term memory and later compared with a second stimulus (f2), for the animal to come to a binary decision. Prefrontal cortex (PFC) neurons need to interpret the f1 information in one way (perhaps with a positive weight) and the f2 informatio...
Hotz-Boendermaker, Sabina; Marcar, Valentine L; Meier, Michael L; Boendermaker, Bart; Humphreys, Barry K
A cross-sectional comparative study between chronic low back pain (CLBP) patients and healthy control subjects. The aim of this study was to investigate reorganization in the sensory cortex by comparing cortical activity due to mechanosensory stimulation of the lumbar spine in CLBP patients versus a control group by using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). LBP is now the number 1 condition across the world in terms of years living with a disability. There is growing evidence that maladaptive changes in the processing of sensory input by the central nervous system are central to understanding chronic (back) pain. Nonpainful, posterior-anterior (PA) movement pressure was applied manually to lumbar vertebrae at L1, L3, and L5 in 13 healthy subjects and 13 CLBP patients. The manual pressure (30 N) was monitored and controlled using sensors. A randomized stimulation protocol was used consisting of 51 pressure stimuli of 5 seconds duration. fMRI data analysis was performed for the group activation within the primary and secondary sensory cortices (S1 and S2, respectively) and the representation of the individual vertebrae was extracted and statistically analyzed. Nonpainful PA pressure revealed no cortical reorganization in S1. In contrast, the extent of S2 activation in the CLBP group was significantly reduced in both hemispheres. In the control group, a somatotopy was identified for the lumbar vertebrae between L1 and L3, respectively, and L5 in S2 of the right hemisphere. Most importantly, a blurring of the somatotopic representation of the lumbar spine in S2 was observed in the patient group. Together, these maladaptive changes suggest a reorganization of higher-order processing for sensory information in CLBP patients that might have implications for a decreased sensory acuity, also related to body perception and subsequent altered functioning of the lumbar spine. 2.
Luc J Gentet
Full Text Available Although the neocortex forms a distributed system comprised of several functional areas, its vertical columnar organization is largely conserved across areas and species, suggesting the existence of a canonical neocortical microcircuit. In order to elucidate the principles governing the organization of such a cortical diagram, a detailed understanding of the dynamics binding different types of cortical neurons into a coherent algorithm is essential. Within this complex circuitry, GABAergic interneurons, while forming approximately only 15-20% of all cortical neurons, appear critical in maintaining a dynamic balance between excitation and inhibition. Despite their importance, cortical GABAergic neurons have not been extensively studied in vivo and their precise role in shaping the local microcircuit sensory response still remains to be determined. Their paucity, combined with their molecular, anatomical and physiological diversity, has made it difficult to even establish a consensual nomenclature.However, recent technological advances in microscopy and mouse genetics have fostered a renewed interest in neocortical interneurons by putting them within visible reach of experimenters. The anatomically well-defined whisker-to-barrel pathway of the rodent is particularly amenable to studies attempting to link cortical circuit dynamics to behavior. To each whisker corresponds a discrete cortical unit equivalent to a single column, specialized in the encoding and processing of the sensory information it receives. In this review, we will focus on the functional role that each subtype of supragranular GABAergic neuron embedded within such a single neocortical unit may play in shaping the dynamics of the local circuit during somatosensory integration.
Merkle, Conrad W; Srinivasan, Vivek J
The transit time distribution of blood through the cerebral microvasculature both constrains oxygen delivery and governs the kinetics of neuroimaging signals such as blood-oxygen-level-dependent functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (BOLD fMRI). However, in spite of its importance, capillary transit time distribution has been challenging to quantify comprehensively and efficiently at the microscopic level. Here, we introduce a method, called Dynamic Contrast Optical Coherence Tomography (DyC-OCT), based on dynamic cross-sectional OCT imaging of an intravascular tracer as it passes through the field-of-view. Quantitative transit time metrics are derived from temporal analysis of the dynamic scattering signal, closely related to tracer concentration. Since DyC-OCT does not require calibration of the optical focus, quantitative accuracy is achieved even deep in highly scattering brain tissue where the focal spot degrades. After direct validation of DyC-OCT against dilution curves measured using a fluorescent plasma label in surface pial vessels, we used DyC-OCT to investigate the transit time distribution in microvasculature across the entire depth of the mouse somatosensory cortex. Laminar trends were identified, with earlier transit times and less heterogeneity in the middle cortical layers. The early transit times in the middle cortical layers may explain, at least in part, the early BOLD fMRI onset times observed in these layers. The layer-dependencies in heterogeneity may help explain how a single vascular supply manages to deliver oxygen to individual cortical layers with diverse metabolic needs. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Synuclein-gamma is highly expressed in both adipocytes and peripheral nervous system (PNS) somatosensory neurons. Its mRNA is induced during adipogenesis, increased in obese human white adipose tissue (WAT), may be coordinately regulated with leptin, and is decreased following treatment of murine 3T...
Dushanova, Juliana; Donoghue, John
Neurons in higher cortical areas appear to become active during action observation, either by mirroring observed actions (termed mirror neurons) or by eliciting mental rehearsal of observed motor acts. We report the existence of neurons in the primary motor cortex (M1), an area that is generally considered to initiate and guide movement performance, responding to viewed actions. Multielectrode recordings in monkeys performing or observing a well-learned step-tracking task showed that approximately half of the M1 neurons that were active when monkeys performed the task were also active when they observed the action being performed by a human. These 'view' neurons were spatially intermingled with 'do' neurons, which are active only during movement performance. Simultaneously recorded 'view' neurons comprised two groups: approximately 38% retained the same preferred direction (PD) and timing during performance and viewing, and the remainder (62%) changed their PDs and time lag during viewing as compared with performance. Nevertheless, population activity during viewing was sufficient to predict the direction and trajectory of viewed movements as action unfolded, although less accurately than during performance. 'View' neurons became less active and contained poorer representations of action when only subcomponents of the task were being viewed. M1 'view' neurons thus appear to reflect aspects of a learned movement when observed in others, and form part of a broadly engaged set of cortical areas routinely responding to learned behaviors. These findings suggest that viewing a learned action elicits replay of aspects of M1 activity needed to perform the observed action, and could additionally reflect processing related to understanding, learning or mentally rehearsing action.
Gau, Philia; Curtright, Andrew; Condon, Logan; Raible, David W; Dhaka, Ajay
In terrestrial vertebrates such as birds and mammals, neurotrophin receptor expression is considered fundamental for the specification of distinct somatosensory neuron types where TrkA, TrkB and TrkC specify nociceptors, mechanoceptors and proprioceptors/mechanoceptors, respectively. In turn, Runx transcription factors promote neuronal fate specification by regulating neurotrophin receptor and sensory receptor expression where Runx1 mediates TrkA+ nociceptor diversification while Runx3 promotes a TrkC+ proprioceptive/mechanoceptive fate. Here, we report in zebrafish larvae that orthologs of the neurotrophin receptors in contrast to terrestrial vertebrates mark overlapping and distinct subsets of nociceptors suggesting that TrkA, TrkB and TrkC do not intrinsically promote nociceptor, mechanoceptor and proprioceptor/mechanoceptor neuronal fates, respectively. While we find that zebrafish Runx3 regulates nociceptors in contrast to terrestrial vertebrates, it shares a conserved regulatory mechanism found in terrestrial vertebrate proprioceptors/mechanoceptors in which it promotes TrkC expression and suppresses TrkB expression. We find that Cbfβ, which enhances Runx protein stability and affinity for DNA, serves as an obligate cofactor for Runx in neuronal fate determination. High levels of Runx can compensate for the loss of Cbfβ, indicating that in this context Cbfβ serves solely as a signal amplifier of Runx activity. Our data suggests an alteration/expansion of the neurotrophin receptor code of sensory neurons between larval teleost fish and terrestrial vertebrates, while the essential roles of Runx/Cbfβ in sensory neuron cell fate determination while also expanded are conserved.
Rodríguez-Molina, Víctor; Patiño, Javier; Vargas, Yamili; Sánchez-Jaramillo, Edith; Joseph-Bravo, Patricia; Charli, Jean-Louis
Thyrotropin releasing hormone (TRH) is a neuropeptide with a wide neural distribution and a variety of functions. It modulates neuronal electrophysiological properties, including resting membrane potential, as well as excitatory postsynaptic potential and spike frequencies. We explored, with whole-cell patch clamp, TRH effect on action potential shape in pyramidal neurons of the sensorimotor cortex. TRH reduced spike and after hyperpolarization amplitudes, and increased spike half-width. The effect varied with dose, time and cortical layer. In layer V, 0.5µM of TRH induced a small increase in spike half-width, while 1 and 5µM induced a strong but transient change in spike half-width, and amplitude; after hyperpolarization amplitude was modified at 5µM of TRH. Cortical layers III and VI neurons responded intensely to 0.5µM TRH; layer II neurons response was small. The effect of 1µM TRH on action potential shape in layer V neurons was blocked by G-protein inhibition. Inhibition of the activity of the TRH-degrading enzyme pyroglutamyl peptidase II (PPII) reproduced the effect of TRH, with enhanced spike half-width. Many cortical PPII mRNA+ cells were VGLUT1 mRNA+, and some GAD mRNA+. These data show that TRH regulates action potential shape in pyramidal cortical neurons, and are consistent with the hypothesis that PPII controls its action in this region. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Guillem, Karine; Brenot, Viridiana; Durand, Audrey; Ahmed, Serge H
Drug addiction is a harmful preference for drug use over and at the expense of other non-drug-related activities. We previously identified in the rat orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) a mechanism that influences individual preferences between cocaine use and an alternative action rewarded by a non-drug reward (i.e. sweet water). Here, we sought to test the generality of this mechanism to a different addictive drug, heroin. OFC neuronal activity was recorded while rats responded for heroin or the alternative non-drug reward separately or while they chose between the two. First, we found that heroin-rewarded and sweet water-rewarded actions were encoded by two non-overlapping OFC neuronal populations and that the relative size of the heroin population represented individual drug choices. Second, OFC neurons encoding the preferred action-which was the non-drug action in the large majority of individuals-progressively fired more than non-preferred action-coding neurons 1 second after the onset of choice trials and around 1 second before the preferred action was actually chosen, suggesting a pre-choice neuronal competition for action selection. Together with a previous study on cocaine choice, the present study on heroin choice reveals important commonalities in how OFC neurons encode individual drug choices and preferences across different classes of drugs. It also reveals some drug-specific differences in OFC encoding activity. Notably, the proportion of neurons that non-selectively encode both the drug and the non-drug reward was higher when the drug was heroin (present study) than when it was cocaine (previous study). We will discuss the potential functional significance of these commonalities and differences in OFC neuronal activity across different drugs for understanding drug choice. © 2017 Society for the Study of Addiction.
Wallis, J D; Anderson, K C; Miller, E K
The ability to abstract principles or rules from direct experience allows behaviour to extend beyond specific circumstances to general situations. For example, we learn the 'rules' for restaurant dining from specific experiences and can then apply them in new restaurants. The use of such rules is thought to depend on the prefrontal cortex (PFC) because its damage often results in difficulty in following rules. Here we explore its neural basis by recording from single neurons in the PFC of monkeys trained to use two abstract rules. They were required to indicate whether two successively presented pictures were the same or different depending on which rule was currently in effect. The monkeys performed this task with new pictures, thus showing that they had learned two general principles that could be applied to stimuli that they had not yet experienced. The most prevalent neuronal activity observed in the PFC reflected the coding of these abstract rules.
Plakke, Bethany; Diltz, Mark D; Romanski, Lizabeth M
Neuronal activity in single prefrontal neurons has been correlated with behavioral responses, rules, task variables and stimulus features. In the non-human primate, neurons recorded in ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC) have been found to respond to species-specific vocalizations. Previous studies have found multisensory neurons which respond to simultaneously presented faces and vocalizations in this region. Behavioral data suggests that face and vocal information are inextricably linked in animals and humans and therefore may also be tightly linked in the coding of communication calls in prefrontal neurons. In this study we therefore examined the role of VLPFC in encoding vocalization call type information. Specifically, we examined previously recorded single unit responses from the VLPFC in awake, behaving rhesus macaques in response to 3 types of species-specific vocalizations made by 3 individual callers. Analysis of responses by vocalization call type and caller identity showed that ∼19% of cells had a main effect of call type with fewer cells encoding caller. Classification performance of VLPFC neurons was ∼42% averaged across the population. When assessed at discrete time bins, classification performance reached 70 percent for coos in the first 300 ms and remained above chance for the duration of the response period, though performance was lower for other call types. In light of the sub-optimal classification performance of the majority of VLPFC neurons when only vocal information is present, and the recent evidence that most VLPFC neurons are multisensory, the potential enhancement of classification with the addition of accompanying face information is discussed and additional studies recommended. Behavioral and neuronal evidence has shown a considerable benefit in recognition and memory performance when faces and voices are presented simultaneously. In the natural environment both facial and vocalization information is present simultaneously and
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
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
McCarthy, Deirdre M; Bhide, Pradeep G
Cocaine abuse during pregnancy produces harmful effects not only on the mother but also on the unborn child. The neurotransmitters dopamine and serotonin are known as the principal targets of the action of cocaine in the fetal and postnatal brain. However, recent evidence suggests that cocaine can impair cerebral cortical GABA neuron development and function. We sought to analyze the effects of prenatal cocaine exposure on the number and distribution of GABA and projection neurons (inhibitory interneurons and excitatory output neurons, respectively) in the mouse cerebral cortex. We found that the prenatal cocaine exposure decreased GABA neuron numbers and GABA-to-projection neuron ratio in the medial prefrontal cortex of 60-day-old mice. The neighboring prefrontal cortex did not show significant changes in either of these measures. However, there was a significant increase in projection neuron numbers in the prefrontal cortex but not in the medial prefrontal cortex. Thus, the effects of cocaine on GABA and projection neurons appear to be cortical region specific. The population of parvalbumin-immunoreactive GABA neurons was decreased in the medial prefrontal cortex following the prenatal cocaine exposure. The cocaine exposure also delayed the developmental decline in the volume of the medial prefrontal cortex. Thus, prenatal cocaine exposure produced persisting and region-specific effects on cortical cytoarchitecture and impaired the physiological balance between excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmission. These structural changes may underlie the electrophysiological and behavioral effects of prenatal cocaine exposure observed in animal models and human subjects. Copyright © 2012 S. Karger AG, Basel.
Magnain, Caroline; Augustinack, Jean C.; Konukoglu, Ender; Frosch, Matthew P.; Sakadžić, Sava; Varjabedian, Ani; Garcia, Nathalie; Wedeen, Van J.; Boas, David A.; Fischl, Bruce
Abstract. The cytoarchitecture of the human brain is of great interest in diverse fields: neuroanatomy, neurology, neuroscience, and neuropathology. Traditional histology is a method that has been historically used to assess cell and fiber content in the ex vivo human brain. However, this technique suffers from significant distortions. We used a previously demonstrated optical coherence microscopy technique to image individual neurons in several square millimeters of en-face tissue blocks from layer II of the human entorhinal cortex, over 50 μm in depth. The same slices were then sectioned and stained for Nissl substance. We registered the optical coherence tomography (OCT) images with the corresponding Nissl stained slices using a nonlinear transformation. The neurons were then segmented in both images and we quantified the overlap. We show that OCT images contain information about neurons that is comparable to what can be obtained from Nissl staining, and thus can be used to assess the cytoarchitecture of the ex vivo human brain with minimal distortion. With the future integration of a vibratome into the OCT imaging rig, this technique can be scaled up to obtain undistorted volumetric data of centimeter cube tissue blocks in the near term, and entire human hemispheres in the future. PMID:25741528
McTeague, Lisa M; Gruss, L Forest; Keil, Andreas
The responses of sensory cortical neurons are shaped by experience. As a result perceptual biases evolve, selectively facilitating the detection and identification of sensory events that are relevant for adaptive behaviour. Here we examine the involvement of human visual cortex in the formation of learned perceptual biases. We use classical aversive conditioning to associate one out of a series of oriented gratings with a noxious sound stimulus. After as few as two grating-sound pairings, visual cortical responses to the sound-paired grating show selective amplification. Furthermore, as learning progresses, responses to the orientations with greatest similarity to the sound-paired grating are increasingly suppressed, suggesting inhibitory interactions between orientation-selective neuronal populations. Changes in cortical connectivity between occipital and fronto-temporal regions mirror the changes in visuo-cortical response amplitudes. These findings suggest that short-term behaviourally driven retuning of human visual cortical neurons involves distal top-down projections as well as local inhibitory interactions.
Full Text Available The responses of cortical neurons are highly variable across repeated presentations of a stimulus. Understanding this variability is critical for theories of both sensory and motor processing, since response variance affects the accuracy of neural codes. Despite this influence, the cellular and circuit mechanisms that shape the trial-to-trial variability of population responses remain poorly understood. We used a combination of experimental and computational techniques to uncover the mechanisms underlying response variability of populations of pyramidal (E cells in layer 2/3 of rat whisker barrel cortex. Spike trains recorded from pairs of E-cells during either spontaneous activity or whisker deflected responses show similarly low levels of spiking co-variability, despite large differences in network activation between the two states. We developed network models that show how spike threshold nonlinearities dilutes E-cell spiking co-variability during spontaneous activity and low velocity whisker deflections. In contrast, during high velocity whisker deflections, cancelation mechanisms mediated by feedforward inhibition maintain low E-cell pairwise co-variability. Thus, the combination of these two mechanisms ensure low E-cell population variability over a wide range of whisker deflection velocities. Finally, we show how this active decorrelation of population variability leads to a drastic increase in the population information about whisker velocity. The canonical cellular and circuit components of our study suggest that low network variability over a broad range of neural states may generalize across the nervous system.
Jamali, Shahab; Fujioka, Takako; Ross, Bernhard
Extensive rehabilitation training can lead to functional improvement even years after a stroke. Although neuronal plasticity is considered as a main origin of such ameliorations, specific subtending mechanisms need further investigation. Our aim was to obtain objective neuromagnetic measures sensitive to brain reorganizations induced by a music-supported training. We applied 20-Hz vibrotactile stimuli to the index finger and the ring finger, recorded somatosensory steady-state responses with magnetoencephalography, and analyzed the cortical sources displaying oscillations synchronized with the external stimuli in two groups of healthy older adults before and after musical training or without training. In addition, we applied the same analysis for an anecdotic report of a single chronic stroke patient with hemiparetic arm and hand problems, who received music-supported therapy (MST). Healthy older adults showed significant finger separation within the primary somatotopic map. Beta dipole sources were more anterior located compared to gamma sources. An anterior shift of sources and increases in synchrony between the stimuli and beta and gamma oscillations were observed selectively after music training. In the stroke patient a normalization of somatotopic organization was observed after MST, with digit separation recovered after training and stimulus induced gamma synchrony increased. The proposed stimulation paradigm captures the integrity of primary somatosensory hand representation. Source position and synchronization between the stimuli and gamma activity are indices, sensitive to music-supported training. Responsiveness was also observed in a chronic stroke patient, encouraging for the music-supported therapy. Notably, changes in somatosensory responses were observed, even though the therapy did not involve specific sensory discrimination training. The proposed protocol can be used for monitoring changes in neuronal organization during training and will improve
Magistretti, P.J.; Morrison, J.H.; Shoemaker, W.J.; Bloom, F.E.
Vasoactive Intestinal Polypeptide (VIP) promotes the hydrolysis of 3H-glycogen newly synthesized from 3H-glucose by mouse cortical slices. This effect occurs rapidly, approximately 50% of the maximal effect being reached within one minute. The maximal effect is achieved after 5 minutes and maintained for at least 25 minutes. Furthermore the glycogenolytic effect of VIP is reversible, and pharmacologically specific. Thus several neuropeptides present in cerebral cortex such as cholecystokinin-8, somatostatin-28, somatostatin-14, met-enkephalin, leu-enkephalin, do not affect 3H-glycogen levels. VIP fragments 6-28, 16-28 and 21-28 are similarly inactive. Furthermore, among the peptides which share structural homologies with VIP, such as glucagon, secretin, PHI-27 and Gastric Inhibitory Peptide, only secretin and PHI-27 promote 3H-glycogen hydrolysis, with EC50 of 500 and 300 nM respectively, compared to an EC50 of 25 nM for VIP. Immunohistochemical observations indicate that each VIP-containing bipolar cell is identified with a unique radical cortical volume, which is generally between 15-60 micrograms in diameter and overlaps with the contiguous domains of neighbouring VIP-containing bipolar cells. Thus this set of biochemical and morphological observations support the notion that VIP neurons have the capacity to regulate the availability of energy substrates in cerebral cortex locally, within circumscribed, contiguous, radial domains
Leodori, Giorgio; Formica, Alessandra; Zhu, Xiaoying; Conte, Antonella; Belvisi, Daniele; Cruccu, Giorgio; Hallett, Mark; Berardelli, Alfredo
The somatosensory temporal discrimination threshold (STDT) has been used in recent years to investigate time processing of sensory information, but little is known about the physiological correlates of somatosensory temporal discrimination. The objective of this study was to investigate whether the time interval required to discriminate between two stimuli varies according to the number of stimuli in the task. We used the third-stimulus temporal discrimination threshold (ThirdDT), defined as the shortest time interval at which an individual distinguishes a third stimulus following a pair of stimuli delivered at the STDT. The STDT and ThirdDT were assessed in 31 healthy subjects. In a subgroup of 10 subjects, we evaluated the effects of the stimuli intensity on the ThirdDT. In a subgroup of 16 subjects, we evaluated the effects of S1 continuous theta-burst stimulation (S1-cTBS) on the STDT and ThirdDT. Results show that ThirdDT is shorter than STDT. We found a positive correlation between STDT and ThirdDT values. As long as the stimulus intensity was within the perceivable and painless range, it did not affect ThirdDT values. S1-cTBS significantly affected both STDT and ThirdDT, although the latter was affected to a greater extent and for a longer period of time. We conclude that the interval needed to discriminate between time-separated tactile stimuli is related to the number of stimuli used in the task. STDT and ThirdDT are encoded in S1, probably by a shared tactile temporal encoding mechanism whose performance rapidly changes during the perception process. ThirdDT is a new method to measure somatosensory temporal discrimination. NEW & NOTEWORTHY To investigate whether the time interval required to discriminate between stimuli varies according to changes in the stimulation pattern, we used the third-stimulus temporal discrimination threshold (ThirdDT). We found that the somatosensory temporal discrimination acuity varies according to the number of stimuli in the
Conen, Katherine E; Padoa-Schioppa, Camillo
Neuroeconomic models assume that economic decisions are based on the activity of offer value cells in the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC), but testing this assertion has proven difficult. In principle, the decision made on a given trial should correlate with the stochastic fluctuations of these cells. However, this correlation, measured as a choice probability (CP), is small. Importantly, a neuron's CP reflects not only its individual contribution to the decision (termed readout weight), but also the intensity and the structure of correlated variability across the neuronal population (termed noise correlation). A precise mathematical relation between CPs, noise correlations, and readout weights was recently derived by Haefner and colleagues (Haefner RM, Gerwinn S, Macke JH, Bethge M. Nat Neurosci 16: 235-242, 2013) for a linear decision model. In this framework, concurrent measurements of noise correlations and CPs can provide quantitative information on how a population of cells contributes to a decision. Here we examined neuronal variability in the OFC of rhesus monkeys during economic decisions. Noise correlations had similar structure but considerably lower strength compared with those typically measured in sensory areas during perceptual decisions. In contrast, variability in the activity of individual cells was high and comparable to that recorded in other cortical regions. Simulation analyses based on Haefner's equation showed that noise correlations measured in the OFC combined with a plausible readout of offer value cells reproduced the experimental measures of CPs. In other words, the results obtained for noise correlations and those obtained for CPs taken together support the hypothesis that economic decisions are primarily based on the activity of offer value cells. Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.
Full Text Available Genome-wide expression profiling of the human brain has revealed genes that are differentially expressed across the lifespan. Characterizing these genes adds to our understanding of both normal functions and pathological conditions. Additionally, the specific cell-types that contribute to the motor, sensory and cognitive declines during aging are unclear. Here we test if age-related genes show higher expression in specific neural cell types. Our study leverages data from two sources of murine single-cell expression data and two sources of age-associations from large gene expression studies of postmortem human brain. We used nonparametric gene set analysis to test for age-related enrichment of genes associated with specific cell-types; we also restricted our analyses to specific gene ontology groups. Our analyses focused on a primary pair of single-cell expression data from the mouse visual cortex and age-related human post-mortem gene expression information from the orbitofrontal cortex. Additional pairings that used data from the hippocampus, prefrontal cortex, somatosensory cortex and blood were used to validate and test specificity of our findings. We found robust age-related up-regulation of genes that are highly expressed in oligodendrocytes and astrocytes, while genes highly expressed in layer 2/3 glutamatergic neurons were down-regulated across age. Genes not specific to any neural cell type were also down-regulated, possibly due to the bulk tissue source of the age-related genes. A gene ontology-driven dissection of the cell-type enriched genes highlighted the strong down-regulation of genes involved in synaptic transmission and cell-cell signaling in the Somatostatin (Sst neuron subtype that expresses the cyclin dependent kinase 6 (Cdk6 and in the vasoactive intestinal peptide (Vip neuron subtype expressing myosin binding protein C, slow type (Mybpc1. These findings provide new insights into cell specific susceptibility to normal aging
Bradley, Claire; Joyce, Niamh; Garcia-Larrea, Luis
Adaptation in sensory cortices has been seen as a mechanism allowing the creation of transient memory representations. Here we tested the adapting properties of early responses in human somatosensory areas SI and SII by analysing somatosensory-evoked potentials over the very first repetitions of a stimulus. SI and SII generators were identified by well-defined scalp potentials and source localisation from high-density 128-channel EEG. Earliest responses (~20 ms) from area 3b in the depth of the post-central gyrus did not show significant adaptation to stimuli repeated at 300 ms intervals. In contrast, responses around 45 ms from the crown of the gyrus (areas 1 and 2) rapidly lessened to a plateau and abated at the 20th stimulation, and activities from SII in the parietal operculum at ~100 ms displayed strong adaptation with a steady amplitude decrease from the first repetition. Although responses in both SI (1-2) and SII areas showed adapting properties and hence sensory memory capacities, evidence of sensory mismatch detection has been demonstrated only for responses reflecting SII activation. This may index the passage from an early form of sensory storage in SI to more operational memory codes in SII, allowing the prediction of forthcoming input and the triggering of a specific signal when such input differs from the previous sequence. This is consistent with a model whereby the length of temporal receptive windows increases with progression in the cortical hierarchy, in parallel with the complexity and abstraction of neural representations.
Rodrigo eSiqueira Kazu
Full Text Available Quantitative analysis of the cellular composition of rodent, primate, insectivore and afrotherian brains has shown that nonneuronal scaling rules are similar across these mammalian orders that diverged about 95 million years ago, and therefore appear to be conserved in evolution, while neuronal scaling rules appear to be free to vary in a clade-specific manner. Here we analyze the cellular scaling rules that apply to the brain of artiodactyls, a group within the order Cetartiodactyla, believed to be a relatively recent radiation from the common Eutherian ancestor. We find that artiodactyls share nonneuronal scaling rules with all groups analyzed previously. Artiodactyls share with afrotherians and rodents, but not with primates, the neuronal scaling rules that apply to the cerebral cortex and cerebellum. The neuronal scaling rules that apply to the remaining brain areas are however distinct in artiodactyls. Importantly, we show that the folding index of the cerebral cortex scales with the number of neurons in the cerebral cortex in distinct fashions across artiodactyls, afrotherians, rodents, and primates, such that the artiodactyl cerebral cortex is more convoluted than primate cortices of similar numbers of neurons. Our findings suggest that the scaling rules found to be shared across modern afrotherians, glires and artiodactyls applied to the common Eutherian ancestor, such as the relationship between the mass of the cerebral cortex as a whole and its number of neurons. In turn, the distribution of neurons along the surface of the cerebral cortex, which is related to its degree of gyrification, appears to be a clade-specific characteristic. If the neuronal scaling rules for artiodactyls extend to all cetartiodactyls, we predict that the large cerebral cortex of cetaceans will still have fewer neurons than the human cerebral cortex.
Full Text Available Spinal cord injury (SCI leads to severe chronic disability, but also to secondary adaptive changes upstream to the injury in the brain which are most likely induced due to the lack of afferent information. These neuroplastic changes are a potential target for innovative therapies such as neuroprostheses, e.g., by stimulation in order to evoke sensation or in order to suppress phantom limb pain. Diverging results on gray matter atrophy have been reported in patients with SCI. Detectability of atrophy seems to depend on the selection of the regions of interest, while whole-brain approaches are not sensitive enough. In this study, we discussed previous research approaches and analyzed differential atrophic changes in incomplete SCI using manual segmentation of the somatosensory cortex. Patients with incomplete SCI (ASIA C-D, with cervical (N = 5 and thoracic (N = 6 injury were included. Time since injury was ≤12 months in 7 patients, and 144, 152, 216, and 312 months in the other patients. Age at the injury was ≤26 years in 4 patients and ≥50 years in 7 patients. A sample of 12 healthy controls was included in the study. In contrast to all previous studies that used voxel-based morphometry, we performed manual segmentation of the somatosensory cortex in the postcentral gyrus from structural magnetic resonance images and normalized the calculated volumes against the sum of volumes of an automated whole-head segmentation. Volumes were smaller in patients than in controls (p = 0.011, and as a tendency, female patients had smaller volumes than male patients (p = 0.017, uncorrected. No effects of duration (subacute vs. chronic, level of lesion (cervical vs. thoracic, region (left vs. right S1, and age at onset (≤26 vs. ≥50 years was found. Our results demonstrate volume loss of S1 in incomplete SCI and encourage further research with larger sample sizes on volumetric changes in the acute and chronic stage of SCI, in
Sanchez-Panchuelo, Rosa M; Besle, Julien; Beckett, Alex; Bowtell, Richard; Schluppeck, Denis; Francis, Susan
The primary somatosensory cortex (S1) can be subdivided cytoarchitectonically into four distinct Brodmann areas (3a, 3b, 1, and 2), but these areas have never been successfully delineated in vivo in single human subjects. Here, we demonstrate the functional parcellation of four areas of S1 in individual human subjects based on high-resolution functional MRI measurements made at 7 T using vibrotactile stimulation. By stimulating four sites along the length of the index finger, we were able to identify and locate map reversals of the base to tip representation of the index finger in S1. We suggest that these reversals correspond to the areal borders between the mirrored representations in the four Brodmann areas, as predicted from electrophysiology measurements in nonhuman primates. In all subjects, maps were highly reproducible across scanning sessions and stable over weeks. In four of the six subjects scanned, four, mirrored, within-finger somatotopic maps defining the extent of the Brodmann areas could be directly observed on the cortical surface. In addition, by using multivariate classification analysis, the location of stimulation on the index finger (four distinct sites) could be decoded with a mean accuracy of 65% across subjects. Our measurements thus show that within-finger topography is present at the millimeter scale in the cortex and is highly reproducible. The ability to identify functional areas of S1 in vivo in individual subjects will provide a framework for investigating more complex aspects of tactile representation in S1.
Prenatal exposure to ethanol causes profound disruptions in the development of the cerebral cortex. Therefore, the effect of in utero ethanol exposure on the generation of neurons was determined. Pregnant rats were fed a liquid diet in which ethanol constituted 37.5% of the total caloric content (Et) or pair-fed an isocaloric control diet (Ct) from gestational day (GD) 6 to the day of birth. The time of origin of cortical neurons was determined in the mature pups of females injected with [3H]thymidine on one day during the period from GD 10 to the day of birth. The brains were processed by standard autoradiographic techniques. Ethanol exposure produced multiple defects in neuronal ontogeny. The period of generation was 1-2 days later for Et-treated rats than for rats exposed prenatally to either control diet. Moreover, the generation period was 1-2 days longer in Et-treated rats. The numbers of neurons generated on a specific day was altered; from GD 12-19 significantly fewer neurons were generated in Et-treated rats than in Ct-treated rats, whereas after GD 19 more neurons were born. The distribution of neurons generated on a specific day was disrupted; most notable was the distribution of late-generated neurons in deep cortex of Et-treated rats rather than in superficial cortex as they are in controls. Cortical neurons in Et-treated rats tended to be smaller than in Ct-treated rats, particularly early generated neurons in deep cortex. The late-generated neurons in Et-treated rats were of similar size to those in Ct-treated rats despite their abnormal position in deep cortex. Neurons in Ct-treated rats tended to be rounder than those in Et-treated rats which were more polarized in the radial orientation
Griffin, K M
Sacral and posterior tibial nerve stimulation may be used to treat faecal incontinence; however, the mechanism of action is unknown. The aim of this study was to establish whether sensory activation of the cerebral cortex by anal canal stimulation was increased by peripheral neuromodulation.
de Kock, C.P.J.; Sakmann, B.
Sensation involves active movement of sensory organs, but it remains unknown how position or movement of sensory organs is encoded in cortex. In the rat whisker system, each whisker is represented by an individual cortical (barrel) column. Here, we quantified in awake, head-fixed rats the impact of
Full Text Available Acoustic trauma is being reported to damage the auditory periphery and central system, and the compromised cortical inhibition is involved in auditory disorders, such as hyperacusis and tinnitus. Parvalbumin-containing neurons (PV neurons, a subset of GABAergic neurons, greatly shape and synchronize neural network activities. However, the change of PV neurons following acoustic trauma remains to be elucidated. The present study investigated how auditory cortical PV neurons change following unilateral 1 hour noise exposure (left ear, one octave band noise centered at 16 kHz, 116 dB SPL. Noise exposure elevated the auditory brainstem response threshold of the exposed ear when examined 7 days later. More detectable PV neurons were observed in both sides of the auditory cortex of noise-exposed rats when compared to control. The detectable PV neurons of the left auditory cortex (ipsilateral to the exposed ear to noise exposure outnumbered those of the right auditory cortex (contralateral to the exposed ear. Quantification of Western blotted bands revealed higher expression level of PV protein in the left cortex. These findings of more active PV neurons in noise-exposed rats suggested that a compensatory mechanism might be initiated to maintain a stable state of the brain.
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.
Ohtsuka, Masanari; Fukumitsu, Hidefumi; Furukawa, Shoei
Laminar formation in the developing cerebral cortex requires the precisely regulated generation of phenotype-specified neurons. To test the possible involvement of pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating polypeptide (PACAP) in this formation, we investigated the effects of PACAP administered into the telencephalic ventricular space of 13.5-day-old mouse embryos. PACAP partially inhibited the proliferation of cortical progenitors and altered the position and gene-expression profiles of newly generated neurons otherwise expected for layer IV to those of neurons for the deeper layers, V and VI, of the cerebral cortex. The former and latter effects were seen only when the parent progenitor cells were exposed to PACAP in the later and in earlier G1 phase, respectively; and these effects were suppressed by co-treatment with a protein kinase A (PKA) inhibitor. These observations suggest that PACAP participates in the processes forming the neuronal laminas in the developing cortex via the intracellular PKA pathway
Disterhoft, J F; Segal, M
Chronic unit activity and gross movement were recorded from rats during two discrimination reversals in a classical appetitive conditioning situation. The anticipatory movement decreased in response to the former CS+ tone and increased to the previous CS- tone after each reversal. Hippocampus and motor cortex were differently related to these two kinds of behavioral change. Response rates of hippocampal neurons were more closely related to the increased movement response to the former CS- which now signaled food. Motor cortex neuron responses were more closely correlated with the decrease in movement responses to the former CS+ which became neutral after the reversal. It appeared that hippocampal neurons could have been involved in one cognitive aspect of the situation, motor cortex neurons in another. The data were related to current functional concepts of these brain regions.
Lindholm, Pauliina; Lamusuo, Salla; Taiminen, Tero; Pesonen, Ullamari; Lahti, Ari; Virtanen, Arja; Forssell, Heli; Hietala, Jarmo; Hagelberg, Nora; Pertovaara, Antti; Parkkola, Riitta; Jääskeläinen, Satu
High-frequency repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) of the motor cortex has analgesic effect; however, the efficacy of other cortical targets and the mode of action remain unclear. We examined the effects of rTMS in neuropathic orofacial pain, and compared 2 cortical targets against placebo. Furthermore, as dopaminergic mechanisms modulate pain responses, we assessed the influence of the functional DRD2 gene polymorphism (957C>T) and the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism on the analgesic effect of rTMS. Sixteen patients with chronic drug-resistant neuropathic orofacial pain participated in this randomized, placebo-controlled, crossover study. Navigated high-frequency rTMS was given to the sensorimotor (S1/M1) and the right secondary somatosensory (S2) cortices. All subjects were genotyped for the DRD2 957C>T and COMT Val158Met polymorphisms. Pain, mood, and quality of life were monitored throughout the study. The numerical rating scale pain scores were significantly lower after the S2 stimulation than after the S1/M1 (P = 0.0071) or the sham (P = 0.0187) stimulations. The Brief Pain Inventory scores were also lower 3 to 5 days after the S2 stimulation than those at pretreatment baseline (P = 0.0127 for the intensity of pain and P = 0.0074 for the interference of pain) or after the S1/M1 (P = 0.001 and P = 0.0001) and sham (P = 0.0491 and P = 0.0359) stimulations. No correlations were found between the genetic polymorphisms and the analgesic effect in the present small clinical sample. The right S2 cortex is a promising new target for the treatment of neuropathic orofacial pain with high-frequency rTMS.
Li, Ling-Yun; Xiong, Xiaorui R; Ibrahim, Leena A; Yuan, Wei; Tao, Huizhong W; Zhang, Li I
Cortical inhibitory circuits play important roles in shaping sensory processing. In auditory cortex, however, functional properties of genetically identified inhibitory neurons are poorly characterized. By two-photon imaging-guided recordings, we specifically targeted 2 major types of cortical inhibitory neuron, parvalbumin (PV) and somatostatin (SOM) expressing neurons, in superficial layers of mouse auditory cortex. We found that PV cells exhibited broader tonal receptive fields with lower intensity thresholds and stronger tone-evoked spike responses compared with SOM neurons. The latter exhibited similar frequency selectivity as excitatory neurons. The broader/weaker frequency tuning of PV neurons was attributed to a broader range of synaptic inputs and stronger subthreshold responses elicited, which resulted in a higher efficiency in the conversion of input to output. In addition, onsets of both the input and spike responses of SOM neurons were significantly delayed compared with PV and excitatory cells. Our results suggest that PV and SOM neurons engage in auditory cortical circuits in different manners: while PV neurons may provide broadly tuned feedforward inhibition for a rapid control of ascending inputs to excitatory neurons, the delayed and more selective inhibition from SOM neurons may provide a specific modulation of feedback inputs on their distal dendrites. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: email@example.com.
Full Text Available Summary: Multisensory integration (MSI is a fundamental emergent property of the mammalian brain. During MSI, perceptual information encoded in patterned activity is processed in multimodal association cortex. The systems-level neuronal dynamics that coordinate MSI, however, are unknown. Here, we demonstrate intrinsic hub-like network activity in the association cortex that regulates MSI. We engineered calcium reporter mouse lines based on the fluorescence resonance energy transfer sensor yellow cameleon (YC2.60 expressed in excitatory or inhibitory neurons. In medial and parietal association cortex, we observed spontaneous slow waves that self-organized into hubs defined by long-range excitatory and local inhibitory circuits. Unlike directional source/sink-like flows in sensory areas, medial/parietal excitatory and inhibitory hubs had net-zero balanced inputs. Remarkably, multisensory stimulation triggered rapid phase-locking mainly of excitatory hub activity persisting for seconds after the stimulus offset. Therefore, association cortex tends to form balanced excitatory networks that configure slow-wave phase-locking for MSI. Video Abstract: : Kuroki et al. performed cell-type-specific, wide-field FRET-based calcium imaging to visualize cortical network activity induced by multisensory inputs. They observed phase-locking of cortical slow waves in excitatory neuronal hubs in association cortical areas that may underlie multisensory integration. Keywords: wide-field calcium imaging, multisensory integration, cortical slow waves, association cortex, phase locking, fluorescence resonance energy transfer, spontaneous activity, excitatory neuron, inhibitory neuron, mouse
Zhang, Xui-Si; Huang, Jing; Zhan, Cong-Qing; Chen, Jing; Li, Tao; Kaye, Alan D; Wu, Sheng-Xi; Xiao, Lan
Many pain states are linked to central nervous system (CNS) diseases involving the dysfunction of dendritic arborization, making restoration a promising therapeutic strategy. Transfection of primary cortex neurons offers the possibility to study mechanisms which are important for the restoration of proper arborization. Its progress is, however, limited at present due to the lack of suitable gene transfer techniques. To obtain better insight into the transfection potential of currently used techniques, 2 non-viral transfection methods, lipofection and gene electrotransfer (GET), were compared. This is a comparison study performed on cultured cells. The transfection efficiency and neuronal viability, as well as the neuronal dendritic arborization after lipofection or GET, were compared. Primary cultured cortex neurons were transfected with the pEGFP-N1 plasmid, either using Lipofectamine 2000 (2, 3, or 4µL) or with electroporation, with our previously optimized protocol (200V/25 ms). Transfection efficiency and cell viability were inversely proportional for lipofection. The appropriate ratio of Lipofectamine and plasmid DNA provides optimal conditions for lipofection. Although GET offered higher transfection efficiency, it could not induce complex dendritic arborization, which made it unsuitable for in vitro gene transfer into cortex neurons. Limitations include species variability and translational applicability for CNS diseases and pain states related to potential toxicity. Based on these findings, lipofection might be advantageous for in vitro application to primary cultured cortex neurons. Pain states, stress mediated pathogenesis, and certain CNS diseases might potentially utilize this important technique in the future as a therapeutic modality.
Benedetti, B; Matyash, V; Kettenmann, H
Astrocytes in the barrel cortex respond with a transient Ca2+ increase to neuronal stimulation and this response is restricted to the stimulated barrel field. In the present study we suppressed the astrocyte response by dialysing these cells with the Ca2+ chelator BAPTA. Electrical stimulation triggered a depolarization in stellate or pyramidal ‘regular spiking’ neurons from cortex layer 4 and 2/3 and this response was augmented in amplitude and duration after astrocytes were dialysed with BAPTA. Combined blockade of GABAA and GABAB receptors mimicked the effect of BAPTA dialysis, while glutamate receptor blockers had no effect. Moreover, the frequency of spontaneous postsynaptic currents was increased after BAPTA dialysis. Outside the range of BAPTA dialysis astrocytes responded with a Ca2+ increase, but in contrast to control, the response was no longer restricted to one barrel field. Our findings indicate that astrocytes control neuronal inhibition in the barrel cortex. PMID:21224221
Benedetti, B; Matyash, V; Kettenmann, H
Astrocytes in the barrel cortex respond with a transient Ca2+ increase to neuronal stimulation and this response is restricted to the stimulated barrel field. In the present study we suppressed the astrocyte response by dialysing these cells with the Ca2+ chelator BAPTA. Electrical stimulation triggered a depolarization in stellate or pyramidal ‘regular spiking' neurons from cortex layer 4 and 2/3 and this response was augmented in amplitude and duration after astrocytes were dialysed with BAPTA. Combined blockade of GABAA and GABAB receptors mimicked the effect of BAPTA dialysis, while glutamate receptor blockers had no effect. Moreover, the frequency of spontaneous postsynaptic currents was increased after BAPTA dialysis. Outside the range of BAPTA dialysis astrocytes responded with a Ca2+ increase, but in contrast to control, the response was no longer restricted to one barrel field. Our findings indicate that astrocytes control neuronal inhibition in the barrel cortex.
Potts, J T; Fong, A Y; Anguelov, P I; Lee, S; McGovern, D; Grias, I
NTS. These findings indicate that immunolesioning of NK1-R expressing NTS neurons selectively abolishes the depressive effect of somatosensory input on arterial baroreceptor-heart rate reflex function.
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.
Amemori, Ken-ichi; Amemori, Satoko
The judgment of whether to accept or to reject an offer is determined by positive and negative affect related to the offer, but affect also induces motivational responses. Rewarding and aversive cues influence the firing rates of many neurons in primate prefrontal and cingulate neocortical regions, but it still is unclear whether neurons in these regions are related to affective judgment or to motivation. To address this issue, we recorded simultaneously the neuronal spike activities of single units in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC) and the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) of macaque monkeys as they performed approach–avoidance (Ap–Av) and approach–approach (Ap–Ap) decision-making tasks that can behaviorally dissociate affective judgment and motivation. Notably, neurons having activity correlated with motivational condition could be distinguished from neurons having activity related to affective judgment, especially in the Ap–Av task. Although many neurons in both regions exhibited similar, selective patterns of task-related activity, we found a larger proportion of neurons activated in low motivational conditions in the dlPFC than in the ACC, and the onset of this activity was significantly earlier in the dlPFC than in the ACC. Furthermore, the temporal onsets of affective judgment represented by neuronal activities were significantly slower in the low motivational conditions than in the other conditions. These findings suggest that motivation and affective judgment both recruit dlPFC and ACC neurons but with differential degrees of involvement and timing. PMID:25653353
Oswald, Manfred J.; Tantirigama, Malinda L. S.; Sonntag, Ivo; Hughes, Stephanie M.; Empson, Ruth M.
In the primary motor cortex (M1), layer 5 projection neurons signal directly to distant motor structures to drive movement. Despite their pivotal position and acknowledged diversity these neurons are traditionally separated into broad commissural and corticofugal types, and until now no attempt has been made at resolving the basis for their diversity. We therefore probed the electrophysiological and morphological properties of retrogradely labeled M1 corticospinal (CSp), corticothalamic (CTh), and commissural projecting corticostriatal (CStr) and corticocortical (CC) neurons. An unsupervised cluster analysis established at least four phenotypes with additional differences between lumbar and cervical projecting CSp neurons. Distinguishing parameters included the action potential (AP) waveform, firing behavior, the hyperpolarisation-activated sag potential, sublayer position, and soma and dendrite size. CTh neurons differed from CSp neurons in showing spike frequency acceleration and a greater sag potential. CStr neurons had the lowest AP amplitude and maximum rise rate of all neurons. Temperature influenced spike train behavior in corticofugal neurons. At 26°C CTh neurons fired bursts of APs more often than CSp neurons, but at 36°C both groups fired regular APs. Our findings provide reliable phenotypic fingerprints to identify distinct M1 projection neuron classes as a tool to understand their unique contributions to motor function. PMID:24137110
Manfred J Oswald
Full Text Available In the primary motor cortex (M1, layer 5 projection neurons signal directly to distant motor structures to drive movement. Despite their pivotal position and acknowledged diversity these neurons are traditionally separated into broad commissural and corticofugal types, and until now no attempt has been made at resolving the basis for their diversity. We therefore probed the electrophysiological and morphological properties of retrogradely labelled M1 corticospinal (CSp, corticothalamic (CTh, and commissural projecting corticostriatal (CStr and corticocortical (CC neurons. An unsupervised cluster analysis established at least four phenotypes with additional differences between lumbar and cervical projecting CSp neurons. Distinguishing parameters included the action potential (AP waveform, firing behaviour, the hyperpolarisation-activated sag potential, sublayer position, and soma and dendrite size. CTh neurons differed from CSp neurons in showing spike frequency acceleration and a greater sag potential. CStr neurons had the lowest AP amplitude and maximum rise rate of all neurons. Temperature influenced spike train behaviour in corticofugal neurons. At 26 ºC CTh neurons fired bursts of APs more often than CSp neurons, but at 36 ºC both groups fired regular APs. Our findings provide reliable phenotypic fingerprints to identify distinct M1 projection neuron classes as a tool to understand their unique contributions to motor function.
Ziebell Jenna M
Full Text Available Abstract Background Since their discovery, the morphology of microglia has been interpreted to mirror their function, with ramified microglia constantly surveying the micro-environment and rapidly activating when changes occur. In 1899, Franz Nissl discovered what we now recognize as a distinct microglial activation state, microglial rod cells (Stäbchenzellen, which he observed adjacent to neurons. These rod-shaped microglia are typically found in human autopsy cases of paralysis of the insane, a disease of the pre-penicillin era, and best known today from HIV-1-infected brains. Microglial rod cells have been implicated in cortical ‘synaptic stripping’ but their exact role has remained unclear. This is due at least in part to a scarcity of experimental models. Now we have noted these rod microglia after experimental diffuse brain injury in brain regions that have an associated sensory sensitivity. Here, we describe the time course, location, and surrounding architecture associated with rod microglia following experimental diffuse traumatic brain injury (TBI. Methods Rats were subjected to a moderate midline fluid percussion injury (mFPI, which resulted in transient suppression of their righting reflex (6 to 10 min. Multiple immunohistochemistry protocols targeting microglia with Iba1 and other known microglia markers were undertaken to identify the morphological activation of microglia. Additionally, labeling with Iba1 and cell markers for neurons and astrocytes identified the architecture that surrounds these rod cells. Results We identified an abundance of Iba1-positive microglia with rod morphology in the primary sensory barrel fields (S1BF. Although present for at least 4 weeks post mFPI, they developed over the first week, peaking at 7 days post-injury. In the absence of contusion, Iba1-positive microglia appear to elongate with their processes extending from the apical and basal ends. These cells then abut one another and lay adjacent
Full Text Available Stroke causes life long disabilities where few therapeutic options are available. Using electrical and magnetic stimulation of the brain and physical rehabilitation, recovery of brain function can be enhanced even late after stroke. Animal models support this notion, and housing rodents in an enriched environment (EE several days after experimental stroke stimulates lost brain function by multisensory mechanisms. We studied the dynamics of functional recovery of rats with a lesion to the fore and hind limb motor areas induced by photothrombosis (PT, and with subsequent housing in either standard (STD or EE. In this model, skilled motor function is not significantly enhanced by enriched housing, while the speed of recovery of sensori-motor function substantially improves over the 9-week study period. In particular, this stroke lesion completely obliterates the fore and hind limb placing ability when visual and whisker guidance is prevented, a deficit that persists for up to 9 weeks of recovery, but that is markedly restored within 2 weeks by enriched housing. Enriched housing after stroke also leads to a significant loss of perineuronal net (PNN immunoreactivity; detection of aggrecan protein backbone with AB1031 antibody was decreased by 13-22%, and labelling of a glycan moiety of aggrecan with Cat-315 antibody was reduced by 25-30% in the peri-infarct area and in the somatosensory cortex, respectively. The majority of these cells are parvalbumin/GABA inhibitory interneurons that are important in sensori-information processing. We conclude that damage to the fore and hind limb motor areas provides a model of loss of limb placing response without visual guidance, a deficit also seen in more than 50% of stroke patients. This loss is amenable to recovery induced by multiple sensory stimulation and correlates with a decrease in aggrecan-containing PNNs around inhibitory interneurons. Modulating the PNN structure after ischemic damage may provide new
Werf, J. van der; Buchholz, V.N.; Jensen, O.; Medendorp, W.P.
Neuropsychological and neuroimaging studies have implicated the human posterior parietal cortex (PPC) in sensorimotor integration and saccade planning However, the temporal dynamics of the underlying physiology and its relationship to observations in non-human primates have been difficult to pin
Raghanti, Mary Ann; Conley, Tiffini; Sudduth, Jessica; Erwin, Joseph M.; Stimpson, Cheryl D.; Hof, Patrick R.; Sherwood, Chet C.
We examined the distribution of neurons immunoreactive for neuropeptide Y (NPY) in the posterior part of the superior temporal cortex (Brodmann's area 22 or area Tpt) of humans and nonhuman haplorrhine primates. NPY has been implicated in learning and memory and the density of NPY-expressing cortical neurons and axons is reduced in depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and Alzheimer's disease. Due to the role that NPY plays in both cognition and neurodegenerative diseases, we tested the hypothesis that the density of cortical and interstitial neurons expressing NPY was increased in humans relative to other primate species. The study sample included great apes (chimpanzee and gorilla), Old World monkeys (pigtailed macaque, moor macaque, and baboon) and New World monkeys (squirrel monkey and capuchin). Stereologic methods were used to estimate the density of NPY-immunoreactive (-ir) neurons in layers I-VI of area Tpt and the subjacent white matter. Adjacent Nissl-stained sections were used to calculate local densities of all neurons. The ratio of NPY-ir neurons to total neurons within area Tpt and the total density of NPY-ir neurons within the white matter were compared among species. Overall, NPY-ir neurons represented only an average of 0.006% of the total neuron population. While there were significant differences among species, phylogenetic trends in NPY-ir neuron distributions were not observed and humans did not differ from other primates. However, variation among species warrants further investigation into the distribution of this neuromodulator system. PMID:23042407
Xie, Rou-Gang; Chu, Wen-Guang; Hu, San-Jue; Luo, Ceng
Sensory neuron types have been distinguished by distinct morphological and transcriptional characteristics. Excitability is the most fundamental functional feature of neurons. Mathematical models described by Hodgkin have revealed three types of neuronal excitability based on the relationship between firing frequency and applied current intensity. However, whether natural sensory neurons display different functional characteristics in terms of excitability and whether this excitability type undergoes plastic changes under pathological pain states have remained elusive. Here, by utilizing whole-cell patch clamp recordings, behavioral and pharmacological assays, we demonstrated that large dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons can be classified into three classes and four subclasses based on their excitability patterns, which is similar to mathematical models raised by Hodgkin. Analysis of hyperpolarization-activated cation current (Ih) revealed different magnitude of Ih in different excitability types of large DRG neurons, with higher Ih in Class 2-1 than that in Class 1, 2-2 and 3. This indicates a crucial role of Ih in the determination of excitability type of large DRG neurons. More importantly, this pattern of excitability displays plastic changes and transition under pathological pain states caused by peripheral nerve injury. This study sheds new light on the functional characteristics of large DRG neurons and extends functional classification of large DRG neurons by integration of transcriptomic and morphological characteristics. PMID:29303989
Full Text Available Sensory neuron types have been distinguished by distinct morphological and transcriptional characteristics. Excitability is the most fundamental functional feature of neurons. Mathematical models described by Hodgkin have revealed three types of neuronal excitability based on the relationship between firing frequency and applied current intensity. However, whether natural sensory neurons display different functional characteristics in terms of excitability and whether this excitability type undergoes plastic changes under pathological pain states have remained elusive. Here, by utilizing whole-cell patch clamp recordings, behavioral and pharmacological assays, we demonstrated that large dorsal root ganglion (DRG neurons can be classified into three classes and four subclasses based on their excitability patterns, which is similar to mathematical models raised by Hodgkin. Analysis of hyperpolarization-activated cation current (Ih revealed different magnitude of Ih in different excitability types of large DRG neurons, with higher Ih in Class 2-1 than that in Class 1, 2-2 and 3. This indicates a crucial role of Ih in the determination of excitability type of large DRG neurons. More importantly, this pattern of excitability displays plastic changes and transition under pathological pain states caused by peripheral nerve injury. This study sheds new light on the functional characteristics of large DRG neurons and extends functional classification of large DRG neurons by integration of transcriptomic and morphological characteristics.
Full Text Available It has been empirically established that the cerebral cortical areas defined by Brodmann one hundred years ago solely on the basis of cellular organization are closely correlated to their function, such as sensation, association, and motion. Cytoarchitectonically distinct cortical areas have different densities and types of neurons. Thus, signaling patterns may also vary among cytoarchitectonically unique cortical areas. To examine how neuronal signaling patterns are related to innate cortical functions, we detected intrinsic features of cortical firing by devising a metric that efficiently isolates non-Poisson irregular characteristics, independent of spike rate fluctuations that are caused extrinsically by ever-changing behavioral conditions. Using the new metric, we analyzed spike trains from over 1,000 neurons in 15 cortical areas sampled by eight independent neurophysiological laboratories. Analysis of firing-pattern dissimilarities across cortical areas revealed a gradient of firing regularity that corresponded closely to the functional category of the cortical area; neuronal spiking patterns are regular in motor areas, random in the visual areas, and bursty in the prefrontal area. Thus, signaling patterns may play an important role in function-specific cerebral cortical computation.
Full Text Available Although the basic morphological characteristics of neurons in the cerebellar cortex have been documented in several species, virtually nothing is known about the quantitative morphological characteristics of these neurons across different taxa. To that end, the present study investigated cerebellar neuronal morphology among eight different, large-brained mammalian species comprising a broad phylogenetic range: afrotherians (African elephant, Florida manatee, carnivores (Siberian tiger, clouded leopard, cetartiodactyls (humpback whale, giraffe and primates (human, common chimpanzee. Specifically, several neuron types (e.g., stellate, basket, Lugaro, Golgi, and granule neurons; N = 317 of the cerebellar cortex were stained with a modified rapid Golgi technique and quantified on a computer-assisted microscopy system. There was a 64-fold variation in brain mass across species in our sample (from clouded leopard to the elephant and a 103-fold variation in cerebellar volume. Most dendritic measures tended to increase with cerebellar volume. The cerebellar cortex in these species exhibited the trilaminate pattern common to all mammals. Morphologically, neuron types in the cerebellar cortex were generally consistent with those described in primates (Fox et al., 1967 and rodents (Palay and Chan-Palay, 1974, although there was substantial quantitative variation across species. In particular, Lugaro neurons in the elephant appeared to be disproportionately larger than those in other species. To explore potential quantitative differences in dendritic measures across species, MARSplines analyses were used to evaluate whether species could be differentiated from each other based on dendritic characteristics alone. Results of these analyses indicated that there were significant differences among all species in dendritic measures.
Dahlke, Carolin; Saberi, Darius; Ott, Bastian
microscopy, and transmission electron microscopy techniques, we analyze the proliferation behavior of microglial cells and astrocytes. We also investigate possible motor neuron death in the mouse motor cortex at different stages of the wobbler disease, which so far has not received much attention. Results...
Takahashi, Yuji K; Roesch, Matthew R; Wilson, Robert C; Toreson, Kathy; O'Donnell, Patricio; Niv, Yael; Schoenbaum, Geoffrey
The orbitofrontal cortex has been hypothesized to carry information regarding the value of expected rewards. Such information is essential for associative learning, which relies on comparisons between expected and obtained reward for generating instructive error signals. These error signals are thought to be conveyed by dopamine neurons. To test whether orbitofrontal cortex contributes to these error signals, we recorded from dopamine neurons in orbitofrontal-lesioned rats performing a reward learning task. Lesions caused marked changes in dopaminergic error signaling. However, the effect of lesions was not consistent with a simple loss of information regarding expected value. Instead, without orbitofrontal input, dopaminergic error signals failed to reflect internal information about the impending response that distinguished externally similar states leading to differently valued future rewards. These results are consistent with current conceptualizations of orbitofrontal cortex as supporting model-based behavior and suggest an unexpected role for this information in dopaminergic error signaling.
Full Text Available Brain cells have a highly active oxidative metabolism, yet they contain only low to moderate superoxide dismutase and catalase activities. Thus, their antioxidant defenses rely mainly on cellular reduced glutathione levels. In this work, in cortical neurons we characterized viability and changes in reduced and oxidized glutathione levels in response to a protocol of iron accumulation. We found that massive death occurred after 2 days in culture with 10 mM Fe. Surviving cells developed an adaptative response that included increased synthesis of GSH and the maintenance of a glutathione-based reduction potential. These results highlight the fundamental role of glutathione homeostasis in the antioxidant response and provide novel insights into the adaptative mechanisms of neurons subjected to progressive iron loads.
Full Text Available Accumulation of Aβ peptide fragments of the APP protein and neurofibrillary tangles of the microtubule-associated protein tau are the cellular hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease (AD. To investigate the relationship between APP metabolism and tau protein levels and phosphorylation, we studied human-stem-cell-derived forebrain neurons with genetic forms of AD, all of which increase the release of pathogenic Aβ peptides. We identified marked increases in intracellular tau in genetic forms of AD that either mutated APP or increased its dosage, suggesting that APP metabolism is coupled to changes in tau proteostasis. Manipulating APP metabolism by β-secretase and γ-secretase inhibition, as well as γ-secretase modulation, results in specific increases and decreases in tau protein levels. These data demonstrate that APP metabolism regulates tau proteostasis and suggest that the relationship between APP processing and tau is not mediated solely through extracellular Aβ signaling to neurons.
Understanding the balance between synaptic excitation and inhibition in cortical circuits in the brain, and how this contributes to cortical rhythms, is fundamental to explaining information processing in the cortex. This study used cortical layer-specific optogenetic activation in mouse cortex to show that excitatory neurons in any cortical layer can drive powerful gamma rhythms, while inhibition balances excitation. The net impact of this is to keep activity within each layer in check, but simultaneously to promote the propagation of activity to downstream layers. The data show that rhythm-generating circuits exist in all principle layers of the cortex, and provide layer-specific balances of excitation and inhibition that affect the flow of information across the layers. Rhythmic activity can synchronize neural ensembles within and across cortical layers. While gamma band rhythmicity has been observed in all layers, the laminar sources and functional impacts of neuronal synchronization in the cortex remain incompletely understood. Here, layer-specific optogenetic stimulation demonstrates that populations of excitatory neurons in any cortical layer of the mouse's primary visual cortex are sufficient to powerfully entrain neuronal oscillations in the gamma band. Within each layer, inhibition balances excitation and keeps activity in check. Across layers, translaminar output overcomes inhibition and drives downstream firing. These data establish that rhythm-generating circuits exist in all principle layers of the cortex, but provide layer-specific balances of excitation and inhibition that may dynamically shape the flow of information through cortical circuits. These data might help explain how excitation/inhibition (E/I) balances across cortical layers shape information processing, and shed light on the diverse nature and functional impacts of cortical gamma rhythms. © 2018 The Authors. The Journal of Physiology © 2018 The Physiological Society.
Ma, Chaolin; Ma, Xuan; Fan, Jing; He, Jiping
It is disputed whether those neurons in the primary motor cortex (M1) that encode hand orientation constitute an independent channel for orientation control in reach-to-grasp behaviors. Here, we trained two monkeys to reach forward and grasp objects positioned in the frontal plane at different orientation angles, and simultaneously recorded the activity of M1 neurons. Among the 2235 neurons recorded in M1, we found that 18.7% had a high correlation exclusively with hand orientation, 15.9% with movement direction, and 29.5% with both movement direction and hand orientation. The distributions of neurons encoding hand orientation and those encoding movement direction were not uniform but coexisted in the same region. The trajectory of hand rotation was reproduced by the firing patterns of the orientation-related neurons independent of the hand reaching direction. These results suggest that hand orientation is an independent component for the control of reaching and grasping activity.
Full Text Available Layer 5 pyramidal neurons comprise an important but heterogeneous group of cortical projection neurons. In motor-frontal cortex, these neurons are centrally involved in the cortical control of movement. Recent studies indicate that local excitatory networks in mouse motor-frontal cortex are dominated by descending pathways from layer 2/3 to 5. However, those pathways were identified in experiments involving unlabeled neurons in wild type mice. Here, to explore the possibility of class-specific connectivity in this descending pathway, we mapped the local sources of excitatory synaptic input to a genetically labeled population of cortical neurons: YFP-positive layer 5 neurons of YFP-H mice. We found, first, that in motor cortex, YFP-positive neurons were distributed in a double blade, consistent with the idea of layer 5B having greater thickness in frontal neocortex. Second, whereas unlabeled neurons in upper layer 5 received their strongest inputs from layer 2, YFP-positive neurons in the upper blade received prominent layer 3 inputs. Third, YFP-positive neurons exhibited distinct electrophysiological properties, including low spike frequency adaptation, as reported previously. Our results with this genetically labeled neuronal population indicate the presence of distinct local-circuit phenotypes among layer 5 pyramidal neurons in mouse motor-frontal cortex, and present a paradigm for investigating local circuit organization in other genetically labeled populations of cortical neurons.
Ziminski, Joseph J; Hessler, Sabine; Margetts-Smith, Gabriella; Sieburg, Meike C; Crombag, Hans S; Koya, Eisuke
Cues that predict the availability of food rewards influence motivational states and elicit food-seeking behaviors. If a cue no longer predicts food availability, then animals may adapt accordingly by inhibiting food-seeking responses. Sparsely activated sets of neurons, coined "neuronal ensembles," have been shown to encode the strength of reward-cue associations. Although alterations in intrinsic excitability have been shown to underlie many learning and memory processes, little is known about these properties specifically on cue-activated neuronal ensembles. We examined the activation patterns of cue-activated orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) and nucleus accumbens (NAc) shell ensembles using wild-type and Fos-GFP mice, which express green fluorescent protein (GFP) in activated neurons, after appetitive conditioning with sucrose and extinction learning. We also investigated the neuronal excitability of recently activated, GFP+ neurons in these brain areas using whole-cell electrophysiology in brain slices. Exposure to a sucrose cue elicited activation of neurons in both the NAc shell and OFC. In the NAc shell, but not the OFC, these activated GFP+ neurons were more excitable than surrounding GFP- neurons. After extinction, the number of neurons activated in both areas was reduced and activated ensembles in neither area exhibited altered excitability. These data suggest that learning-induced alterations in the intrinsic excitability of neuronal ensembles is regulated dynamically across different brain areas. Furthermore, we show that changes in associative strength modulate the excitability profile of activated ensembles in the NAc shell. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Sparsely distributed sets of neurons called "neuronal ensembles" encode learned associations about food and cues predictive of its availability. Widespread changes in neuronal excitability have been observed in limbic brain areas after associative learning, but little is known about the excitability changes that
Perrodin, Catherine; Kayser, Christoph; Logothetis, Nikos K; Petkov, Christopher I
When social animals communicate, the onset of informative content in one modality varies considerably relative to the other, such as when visual orofacial movements precede a vocalization. These naturally occurring asynchronies do not disrupt intelligibility or perceptual coherence. However, they occur on time scales where they likely affect integrative neuronal activity in ways that have remained unclear, especially for hierarchically downstream regions in which neurons exhibit temporally imprecise but highly selective responses to communication signals. To address this, we exploited naturally occurring face- and voice-onset asynchronies in primate vocalizations. Using these as stimuli we recorded cortical oscillations and neuronal spiking responses from functional MRI (fMRI)-localized voice-sensitive cortex in the anterior temporal lobe of macaques. We show that the onset of the visual face stimulus resets the phase of low-frequency oscillations, and that the face-voice asynchrony affects the prominence of two key types of neuronal multisensory responses: enhancement or suppression. Our findings show a three-way association between temporal delays in audiovisual communication signals, phase-resetting of ongoing oscillations, and the sign of multisensory responses. The results reveal how natural onset asynchronies in cross-sensory inputs regulate network oscillations and neuronal excitability in the voice-sensitive cortex of macaques, a suggested animal model for human voice areas. These findings also advance predictions on the impact of multisensory input on neuronal processes in face areas and other brain regions.
Szabó, István; Hormay, Edina; Csetényi, Bettina; Nagy, Bernadett; Lénárd, László; Karádi, Zoltán
Multiple functional attributes of glucose-monitoring neurons in the medial orbitofrontal (ventrolateral prefrontal) cortex. NEUROSCI BIOBEHAV REV 73(1) XXX-XXX, 2017.- Special chemosensory cells, the glucose-monitoring (GM) neurons, reportedly involved in the central feeding control, exist in the medial orbitofrontal (ventrolateral prefrontal) cortex (mVLPFC). Electrophysiological, metabolic and behavioral studies reveal complex functional attributes of these cells and raise their homeostatic significance. Single neuron recordings, by means of the multibarreled microelectrophoretic technique, elucidate differential sensitivities of limbic forebrain neurons in the rat and the rhesus monkey to glucose and other chemicals, whereas gustatory stimulations demonstrate their distinct taste responsiveness. Metabolic examinations provide evidence for alteration of blood glucose level in glucose tolerance test and elevation of plasma triglyceride concentration after destruction of the local GM cells by streptozotocin (STZ). In behavioral studies, STZ microinjection into the mVLPFC fails to interfere with the acquisition of saccharin conditioned taste avoidance, does cause, however, taste perception deficit in taste reactivity tests. Multiple functional attributes of GM neurons in the mVLPFC, within the frame of the hierarchically organized central GM neuronal network, appear to play important role in the maintenance of the homeostatic balance. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Moore, Steven; Evans, Lewis D B; Andersson, Therese; Portelius, Erik; Smith, James; Dias, Tatyana B; Saurat, Nathalie; McGlade, Amelia; Kirwan, Peter; Blennow, Kaj; Hardy, John; Zetterberg, Henrik; Livesey, Frederick J
Accumulation of Aβ peptide fragments of the APP protein and neurofibrillary tangles of the microtubule-associated protein tau are the cellular hallmarks of Alzheimer's disease (AD). To investigate the relationship between APP metabolism and tau protein levels and phosphorylation, we studied human-stem-cell-derived forebrain neurons with genetic forms of AD, all of which increase the release of pathogenic Aβ peptides. We identified marked increases in intracellular tau in genetic forms of AD that either mutated APP or increased its dosage, suggesting that APP metabolism is coupled to changes in tau proteostasis. Manipulating APP metabolism by β-secretase and γ-secretase inhibition, as well as γ-secretase modulation, results in specific increases and decreases in tau protein levels. These data demonstrate that APP metabolism regulates tau proteostasis and suggest that the relationship between APP processing and tau is not mediated solely through extracellular Aβ signaling to neurons. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Allison, J D; Bonds, A B
Intracortical inhibition is believed to enhance the orientation tuning of striate cortical neurons, but the origin of this inhibition is unclear. To examine the possible influence of ascending inhibitory projections from the infragranular layers of striate cortex on the orientation selectivity of neurons in the supragranular layers, we measured the spatiotemporal response properties of 32 supragranular neurons in the cat before, during, and after neural activity in the infragranular layers beneath the recorded cells was inactivated by iontophoretic administration of GABA. During GABA iontophoresis, the orientation tuning bandwidth of 15 (46.9%) supragranular neurons broadened as a result of increases in response amplitude to stimuli oriented about +/- 20 degrees away from the preferred stimulus angle. The mean (+/- SD) baseline orientation tuning bandwidth (half width at half height) of these neurons was 13.08 +/- 2.3 degrees. Their mean tuning bandwidth during inactivation of the infragranular layers increased to 19.59 +/- 2.54 degrees, an increase of 49.7%. The mean percentage increase in orientation tuning bandwidth of the individual neurons was 47.4%. Four neurons exhibited symmetrical changes in their orientation tuning functions, while 11 neurons displayed asymmetrical changes. The change in form of the orientation tuning functions appeared to depend on the relative vertical alignment of the recorded neuron and the infragranular region of inactivation. Neurons located in close vertical register with the inactivated infragranular tissue exhibited symmetric changes in their orientation tuning functions. The neurons exhibiting asymmetric changes in their orientation tuning functions were located just outside the vertical register. Eight of these 11 neurons also demonstrated a mean shift of 6.67 +/- 5.77 degrees in their preferred stimulus orientation. The magnitude of change in the orientation tuning functions increased as the delivery of GABA was prolonged
Hussin, Ahmed T; Boychuk, Jeffery A; Brown, Andrew R; Pittman, Quentin J; Teskey, G Campbell
Intracortical microstimulation (ICMS) is a technique used for a number of purposes including the derivation of cortical movement representations (motor maps). Its application can activate the output layer 5 of motor cortex and can result in the elicitation of body movements depending upon the stimulus parameters used. The extent to which pyramidal tract projection neurons of the motor cortex are activated transsynaptically or directly by ICMS remains an open question. Given this uncertainty in the mode of activation, we used a preparation that combined patch clamp whole-cell recordings from single layer 5 pyramidal neurons and extracellular ICMS in slices of motor cortex as well as a standard in vivo mapping technique to ask how ICMS activated motor cortex pyramidal neurons. We measured changes in synaptic spike threshold and spiking rate to ICMS in vitro and movement threshold in vivo in the presence or absence of specific pharmacological blockers of glutamatergic (AMPA, NMDA and Kainate) receptors and GABAA receptors. With major excitatory and inhibitory synaptic transmission blocked (with DNQX, APV and bicuculline methiodide), we observed a significant increase in the ICMS current intensity required to elicit a movement in vivo as well as to the first spike and an 85% reduction in spiking responses in vitro. Subsets of neurons were still responsive after the synaptic block, especially at higher current intensities, suggesting a modest direct activation. Taken together our data indicate a mainly synaptic mode of activation to ICMS in layer 5 of rat motor cortex. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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.
Miyashita, Yasushi; Chang, Han Soo
It has been proposed that visual-memory traces are located in the temporal lobes of the cerebral cortex, as electric stimulation of this area in humans results in recall of imagery1. Lesions in this area also affect recognition of an object after a delay in both humans2,3 and monkeys4-7 indicating a role in short-term memory of images8. Single-unit recordings from the temporal cortex have shown that some neurons continue to fire when one of two or four colours are to be remembered temporarily9. But neuronal responses selective to specific complex objects10-18 , including hands10,13 and faces13,16,17, cease soon after the offset of stimulus presentation10-18. These results led to the question of whether any of these neurons could serve the memory of complex objects. We report here a group of shape-selective neurons in an anterior ventral part of the temporal cortex of monkeys that exhibited sustained activity during the delay period of a visual short-term memory task. The activity was highly selective for the pictorial information to be memorized and was independent of the physical attributes such as size, orientation, colour or position of the object. These observations show that the delay activity represents the short-term memory of the categorized percept of a picture.
Kim, Taekjun; Allen, Elena A.; Pasley, Brian N.; Freeman, Ralph D.
Background Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is used to selectively alter neuronal activity of specific regions in the cerebral cortex. TMS is reported to induce either transient disruption or enhancement of different neural functions. However, its effects on tuning properties of sensory neurons have not been studied quantitatively. Objective/Hypothesis Here, we use specific TMS application parameters to determine how they may alter tuning characteristics (orientation, spatial frequency, and contrast sensitivity) of single neurons in the cat’s visual cortex. Methods Single unit spikes were recorded with tungsten microelectrodes from the visual cortex of anesthetized and paralyzed cats (12 males). Repetitive TMS (4Hz, 4sec) was delivered with a 70mm figure-8 coil. We quantified basic tuning parameters of individual neurons for each pre- and post-TMS condition. The statistical significance of changes for each tuning parameter between the two conditions was evaluated with a Wilcoxon signed-rank test. Results We generally find long-lasting suppression which persists well beyond the stimulation period. Pre- and post-TMS orientation tuning curves show constant peak values. However, strong suppression at non-preferred orientations tends to narrow the widths of tuning curves. Spatial frequency tuning exhibits an asymmetric change in overall shape, which results in an emphasis on higher frequencies. Contrast tuning curves show nonlinear changes consistent with a gain control mechanism. Conclusions These findings suggest that TMS causes extended interruption of the balance between sub-cortical and intra-cortical inputs. PMID:25862599
Full Text Available The majority of cortical interneurons use GABA (gamma amino butyric acid as inhibitory neurotransmitter. GABAergic neurons are morphologically, connectionally, electrically and chemically heterogeneous. In rat cerebral cortex three distinct groups of GABAergic interneurons have been identifi ed by the expression of parvalbumin (PV, calretinin (CR and somatostatin (SOM. Recent studies in mouse cerebral cortex have revealed a different organization in which the CR and SOM populations are partially overlapping. Because CR and SOM neurons derive from different progenitors located in different embryonic structures, the coexpression of CR + SOM suggests that the chemical differentiation of interneurons is regulated postmitotically. Here, we have taken an important fi rst step towards understanding this process by triple immunostaining mouse visual cortex with a panel of antibodies, which has been used extensively for classifying developing interneurons. We have found at least 13 distinct groups of GABAergic neurons which include PV, CR, SOM, CCK (cholecystokinin, CR + SOM, CR + NPY (neuropeptide Y, CR + VIP (vasointestinal polypeptide, SOM + NPY, SOM + VIP, VIP + ChAT (choline acetyltransferase, CCK + NPY, CR + SOM + NPY and CR + SOM + VIP expressing cells. Triple immunostaining with PV, CR and SOM antibodies during postnatal development further showed that PV is never colocalized with CR and SOM. Importantly, expression of SOM and CR + SOM developed after the percentage of CR cells that do not express SOM has reached the mature level, suggesting that the chemical differentiation of SOM and CR + SOM neurons is a postnatal event, which may be controlled by transcriptional regulation.
Pilkiw, Maryna; Insel, Nathan; Cui, Younghua; Finney, Caitlin; Morrissey, Mark D; Takehara-Nishiuchi, Kaori
The lateral entorhinal cortex (LEC) is thought to bind sensory events with the environment where they took place. To compare the relative influence of transient events and temporally stable environmental stimuli on the firing of LEC cells, we recorded neuron spiking patterns in the region during blocks of a trace eyeblink conditioning paradigm performed in two environments and with different conditioning stimuli. Firing rates of some neurons were phasically selective for conditioned stimuli in a way that depended on which room the rat was in; nearly all neurons were tonically selective for environments in a way that depended on which stimuli had been presented in those environments. As rats moved from one environment to another, tonic neuron ensemble activity exhibited prospective information about the conditioned stimulus associated with the environment. Thus, the LEC formed phasic and tonic codes for event-environment associations, thereby accurately differentiating multiple experiences with overlapping features.
Yang, Yang; Mailman, Richard B
Strategic neuronal encoding in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) of the rat was correlated with spatial working memory (sWM) assessed by behavior in the T-maze. Neurons increased their firing rate around choice, with the increase largely occurring before choice as a prospective encode of behavior. This could be classified as sensitive-to-spatial information or sensitive-to-choice outcome. The sensitivity-to-spatial choice was defined by distinct firing rate changes before left- or right-choice. The percentage of left-choice sensitive neurons was not different from the percentage of right-choice sensitive neurons. There was also location-related neuronal activity in which neurons fired at distinct rates when rats were in a left- or right-location. More neurons were sensitive to left-location, as most of them were recorded from rats preferring to enter the right-location. The sensitivity to outcome was defined by a distinct firing rate around correct or error choice. Significantly more neurons were sensitive to error outcome, and, among these, more preferred to encode prospectively, increasing firing in advance of an error outcome. Similar to single neuron activity, the mPFC enhanced its neuronal network as measured by the oscillation of local field potential. The maximum power of oscillation was around choice, and occurred slightly earlier before error versus before correct outcome. Thus, sWM modulation in the mPFC includes not only spatial, but also outcome-related inputs, and neuronal ensembles monitor behavioral outcome to make strategic adjustments ensuring successful task performance. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Toriumi, Kazuya; Mouri, Akihiro; Narusawa, Shiho; Aoyama, Yuki; Ikawa, Natsumi; Lu, Lingling; Nagai, Taku; Mamiya, Takayoshi; Kim, Hyoung-Chun; Nabeshima, Toshitaka
N-methyl--aspartate (NMDA) receptor is a glutamate receptor which has an important role on mammalian brain development. We have reported that prenatal treatment with phencyclidine (PCP), a NMDA receptor antagonist, induces long-lasting behavioral deficits and neurochemical changes. However, the mechanism by which the prenatal antagonism of NMDA receptor affects neurodevelopment, resulting in behavioral deficits, has remained unclear. Here, we report that prenatal NMDA receptor antagonism impaired the proliferation of neuronal progenitors, leading to a decrease in the progenitor pool in the ventricular and the subventricular zone. Furthermore, using a PCR array focused on neurogenesis and neuronal stem cells, we evaluated changes in gene expression causing the impairment of neuronal progenitor proliferation and found aberrant gene expression, such as Notch2 and Ntn1, in prenatal PCP-treated mice. Consequently, the density of glutamatergic neurons in the prefrontal cortex was decreased, probably resulting in glutamatergic hypofunction. Prenatal PCP-treated mice displayed behavioral deficits in cognitive memory and sensorimotor gating until adulthood. These findings suggest that NMDA receptors regulate the proliferation and maturation of progenitor cells for glutamatergic neuron during neurodevelopment, probably via the regulation of gene expression. PMID:22257896
Bifari, Francesco; Decimo, Ilaria; Pino, Annachiara; Llorens-Bobadilla, Enric; Zhao, Sheng; Lange, Christian; Panuccio, Gabriella; Boeckx, Bram; Thienpont, Bernard; Vinckier, Stefan; Wyns, Sabine; Bouché, Ann; Lambrechts, Diether; Giugliano, Michele; Dewerchin, Mieke; Martin-Villalba, Ana; Carmeliet, Peter
Whether new neurons are added in the postnatal cerebral cortex is still debated. Here, we report that the meninges of perinatal mice contain a population of neurogenic progenitors formed during embryonic development that migrate to the caudal cortex and differentiate into Satb2 + neurons in cortical layers II-IV. The resulting neurons are electrically functional and integrated into local microcircuits. Single-cell RNA sequencing identified meningeal cells with distinct transcriptome signatures characteristic of (1) neurogenic radial glia-like cells (resembling neural stem cells in the SVZ), (2) neuronal cells, and (3) a cell type with an intermediate phenotype, possibly representing radial glia-like meningeal cells differentiating to neuronal cells. Thus, we have identified a pool of embryonically derived radial glia-like cells present in the meninges that migrate and differentiate into functional neurons in the neonatal cerebral cortex. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Hrvoj-Mihic, Branka; Hanson, Kari L; Lew, Caroline H; Stefanacci, Lisa; Jacobs, Bob; Bellugi, Ursula; Semendeferi, Katerina
Williams syndrome (WS) is a unique neurodevelopmental disorder with a specific behavioral and cognitive profile, which includes hyperaffiliative behavior, poor social judgment, and lack of social inhibition. Here we examined the morphology of basal dendrites on pyramidal neurons in the cortex of two rare adult subjects with WS. Specifically, we examined two areas in the prefrontal cortex (PFC)-the frontal pole (Brodmann area 10) and the orbitofrontal cortex (Brodmann area 11)-and three areas in the motor, sensory, and visual cortex (BA 4, BA 3-1-2, BA 18). The findings suggest that the morphology of basal dendrites on the pyramidal neurons is altered in the cortex of WS, with differences that were layer-specific, more prominent in PFC areas, and displayed an overall pattern of dendritic organization that differentiates WS from other disorders. In particular, and unlike what was expected based on typically developing brains, basal dendrites in the two PFC areas did not display longer and more branched dendrites compared to motor, sensory and visual areas. Moreover, dendritic branching, dendritic length, and the number of dendritic spines differed little within PFC and between the central executive region (BA 10) and BA 11 that is part of the orbitofrontal region involved into emotional processing. In contrast, the relationship between the degree of neuronal branching in supra- versus infra-granular layers was spared in WS. Although this study utilized tissue held in formalin for a prolonged period of time and the number of neurons available for analysis was limited, our findings indicate that WS cortex, similar to that in other neurodevelopmental disorders such as Down syndrome, Rett syndrome, Fragile X, and idiopathic autism, has altered morphology of basal dendrites on pyramidal neurons, which appears more prominent in selected areas of the PFC. Results were examined from developmental perspectives and discussed in the context of other neurodevelopmental disorders
Full Text Available Williams syndrome (WS is a unique neurodevelopmental disorder with a specific behavioral and cognitive profile, which includes hyperaffiliative behavior, poor social judgment, and lack of social inhibition. Here we examined the morphology of basal dendrites on pyramidal neurons in the cortex of two rare adult subjects with WS. Specifically, we examined two areas in the prefrontal cortex (PFC—the frontal pole (Brodmann area 10 and the orbitofrontal cortex (Brodmann area 11—and three areas in the motor, sensory, and visual cortex (BA 4, BA 3-1-2, BA 18. The findings suggest that the morphology of basal dendrites on the pyramidal neurons is altered in the cortex of WS, with differences that were layer-specific, more prominent in PFC areas, and displayed an overall pattern of dendritic organization that differentiates WS from other disorders. In particular, and unlike what was expected based on typically developing brains, basal dendrites in the two PFC areas did not display longer and more branched dendrites compared to motor, sensory and visual areas. Moreover, dendritic branching, dendritic length, and the number of dendritic spines differed little within PFC and between the central executive region (BA 10 and BA 11 that is part of the orbitofrontal region involved into emotional processing. In contrast, the relationship between the degree of neuronal branching in supra- versus infra-granular layers was spared in WS. Although this study utilized tissue held in formalin for a prolonged period of time and the number of neurons available for analysis was limited, our findings indicate that WS cortex, similar to that in other neurodevelopmental disorders such as Down syndrome, Rett syndrome, Fragile X, and idiopathic autism, has altered morphology of basal dendrites on pyramidal neurons, which appears more prominent in selected areas of the PFC. Results were examined from developmental perspectives and discussed in the context of other
Piavchenko, G A; Shmarkova, L I; Nozdrin, V I
Using Laboras hardware-software complex, which is a system of automatic registration of behavioral reactions, the locomotor activity 1-, 8- and 16-month-old male rats (12 animals in each group) was recorded followed by counting the number of neuron cell bodies of in the layer V of the motor cortex in Nissl stained slides. It was found that the number of neurons in the motor cortex varied in different age groups. Maximal number of neurons was observed in 8-month-old animals. Motor activity was found to correlate with the number of neurons.
Scott, Gregory; Fagerholm, Erik D.; Mutoh, Hiroki; Leech, Robert; Sharp, David J.; Shew, Woodrow L.
Complex cognitive processes require neuronal activity to be coordinated across multiple scales, ranging from local microcircuits to cortex-wide networks. However, multiscale cortical dynamics are not well understood because few experimental approaches have provided sufficient support for hypotheses involving multiscale interactions. To address these limitations, we used, in experiments involving mice, genetically encoded voltage indicator imaging, which measures cortex-wide electrical activity at high spatiotemporal resolution. Here we show that, as mice recovered from anesthesia, scale-invariant spatiotemporal patterns of neuronal activity gradually emerge. We show for the first time that this scale-invariant activity spans four orders of magnitude in awake mice. In contrast, we found that the cortical dynamics of anesthetized mice were not scale invariant. Our results bridge empirical evidence from disparate scales and support theoretical predictions that the awake cortex operates in a dynamical regime known as criticality. The criticality hypothesis predicts that small-scale cortical dynamics are governed by the same principles as those governing larger-scale dynamics. Importantly, these scale-invariant principles also optimize certain aspects of information processing. Our results suggest that during the emergence from anesthesia, criticality arises as information processing demands increase. We expect that, as measurement tools advance toward larger scales and greater resolution, the multiscale framework offered by criticality will continue to provide quantitative predictions and insight on how neurons, microcircuits, and large-scale networks are dynamically coordinated in the brain. PMID:25505314
GABAergic interneurons comprise the bulk of local inhibitory neuronal circuitry in cortex and hippocampus and a subpopulation of these interneurons contain the calcium binding protein, parvalbumin (PV). A previous report indicated that severe hypothyroidism reduced PV immunoreact...
Vanessa F Descalzo
Full Text Available The input/output relationship in primary visual cortex neurons is influenced by the history of the preceding activity. To understand the impact that membrane potential trajectory and firing pattern has on the activation of slow conductances in cortical neurons we compared the afterpotentials that followed responses to different stimuli evoking similar numbers of action potentials. In particular, we compared afterpotentials following the intracellular injection of either square or sinusoidal currents lasting 20 seconds. Both stimuli were intracellular surrogates of different neuronal responses to prolonged visual stimulation. Recordings from 99 neurons in slices of visual cortex revealed that for stimuli evoking an equivalent number of spikes, sinusoidal current injection activated a slow afterhyperpolarization of significantly larger amplitude (8.5 ± 3.3 mV and duration (33 ± 17 s than that evoked by a square pulse (6.4 ± 3.7 mV, 28 ± 17 s; p<0.05. Spike frequency adaptation had a faster time course and was larger during plateau (square pulse than during intermittent (sinusoidal depolarizations. Similar results were obtained in 17 neurons intracellularly recorded from the visual cortex in vivo. The differences in the afterpotentials evoked with both protocols were abolished by removing calcium from the extracellular medium or by application of the L-type calcium channel blocker nifedipine, suggesting that the activation of a calcium-dependent current is at the base of this afterpotential difference. These findings suggest that not only the spikes, but the membrane potential values and firing patterns evoked by a particular stimulation protocol determine the responses to any subsequent incoming input in a time window that spans for tens of seconds to even minutes.
Aoyama, Yuki; Toriumi, Kazuya; Mouri, Akihiro; Hattori, Tomoya; Ueda, Eriko; Shimato, Akane; Sakakibara, Nami; Soh, Yuka; Mamiya, Takayoshi; Nagai, Taku; Kim, Hyoung-Chun; Hiramatsu, Masayuki; Nabeshima, Toshitaka; Yamada, Kiyofumi
Cigarette smoking during pregnancy is associated with various disabilities in the offspring such as attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, learning disabilities, and persistent anxiety. We have reported that nicotine exposure in female mice during pregnancy, in particular from embryonic day 14 (E14) to postnatal day 0 (P0), induces long-lasting behavioral deficits in offspring. However, the mechanism by which prenatal nicotine exposure (PNE) affects neurodevelopment, resulting in behavioral deficits, has remained unclear. Here, we report that PNE disrupted the proliferation of neuronal progenitors, leading to a decrease in the progenitor pool in the ventricular and subventricular zones. In addition, using a cumulative 5-bromo-2′-deoxyuridine labeling assay, we evaluated the rate of cell cycle progression causing the impairment of neuronal progenitor proliferation, and uncovered anomalous cell cycle kinetics in mice with PNE. Accordingly, the density of glutamatergic neurons in the medial prefrontal cortex (medial PFC) was reduced, implying glutamatergic dysregulation. Mice with PNE exhibited behavioral impairments in attentional function and behavioral flexibility in adulthood, and the deficits were ameliorated by microinjection of D-cycloserine into the PFC. Collectively, our findings suggest that PNE affects the proliferation and maturation of progenitor cells to glutamatergic neuron during neurodevelopment in the medial PFC, which may be associated with cognitive deficits in the offspring. PMID:26105135
Wallis, Jonathan D; Miller, Earl K
The ability to use abstract rules or principles allows behavior to generalize from specific circumstances (e.g., rules learned in a specific restaurant can subsequently be applied to any dining experience). Neurons in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) encode such rules. However, to guide behavior, rules must be linked to motor responses. We investigated the neuronal mechanisms underlying this process by recording from the PFC and the premotor cortex (PMC) of monkeys trained to use two abstract rules: "same" or "different." The monkeys had to either hold or release a lever, depending on whether two successively presented pictures were the same or different, and depending on which rule was in effect. The abstract rules were represented in both regions, although they were more prevalent and were encoded earlier and more strongly in the PMC. There was a perceptual bias in the PFC, relative to the PMC, with more PFC neurons encoding the presented pictures. In contrast, neurons encoding the behavioral response were more prevalent in the PMC, and the selectivity was stronger and appeared earlier in the PMC than in the PFC.
In human long-term memory, ideas and concepts become associated in the learning process1. No neuronal correlate for this cognitive function has so far been described, except that memory traces are thought to be localized in the cerebral cortex; the temporal lobe has been assigned as the site for visual experience because electric stimulation of this area results in imagery recall,2 and lesions produce deficits in visual recognition of objects3-9. We previously reported that in the anterior ventral temporal cortex of monkeys, individual neurons have a sustained activity that is highly selective for a few of the 100 coloured fractal patterns used in a visual working-memory task10. Here I report the development of this selectivity through repeated trials involving the working memory. The few patterns for which a neuron was conjointly selective were frequently related to each other through stimulus-stimulus association imposed during training. The results indicate that the selectivity acquired by these cells represents a neuronal correlate of the associative long-term memory of pictures.
Abstract Background Neuronal migration, the process by which neurons migrate from their place of origin to their final position in the brain, is a central process for normal brain development and function. Advances in experimental techniques have revealed much about many of the molecular components involved in this process. Notwithstanding these advances, how the molecular machinery works together to govern the migration process has yet to be fully understood. Here we present a computational model of neuronal migration, in which four key molecular entities, Lis1, DCX, Reelin and GABA, form a molecular program that mediates the migration process. Results The model simulated the dynamic migration process, consistent with in-vivo observations of morphological, cellular and population-level phenomena. Specifically, the model reproduced migration phases, cellular dynamics and population distributions that concur with experimental observations in normal neuronal development. We tested the model under reduced activity of Lis1 and DCX and found an aberrant development similar to observations in Lis1 and DCX silencing expression experiments. Analysis of the model gave rise to unforeseen insights that could guide future experimental study. Specifically: (1) the model revealed the possibility that under conditions of Lis1 reduced expression, neurons experience an oscillatory neuron-glial association prior to the multipolar stage; and (2) we hypothesized that observed morphology variations in rats and mice may be explained by a single difference in the way that Lis1 and DCX stimulate bipolar motility. From this we make the following predictions: (1) under reduced Lis1 and enhanced DCX expression, we predict a reduced bipolar migration in rats, and (2) under enhanced DCX expression in mice we predict a normal or a higher bipolar migration. Conclusions We present here a system-wide computational model of neuronal migration that integrates theory and data within a precise
Full Text Available Abstract Background Neuronal migration, the process by which neurons migrate from their place of origin to their final position in the brain, is a central process for normal brain development and function. Advances in experimental techniques have revealed much about many of the molecular components involved in this process. Notwithstanding these advances, how the molecular machinery works together to govern the migration process has yet to be fully understood. Here we present a computational model of neuronal migration, in which four key molecular entities, Lis1, DCX, Reelin and GABA, form a molecular program that mediates the migration process. Results The model simulated the dynamic migration process, consistent with in-vivo observations of morphological, cellular and population-level phenomena. Specifically, the model reproduced migration phases, cellular dynamics and population distributions that concur with experimental observations in normal neuronal development. We tested the model under reduced activity of Lis1 and DCX and found an aberrant development similar to observations in Lis1 and DCX silencing expression experiments. Analysis of the model gave rise to unforeseen insights that could guide future experimental study. Specifically: (1 the model revealed the possibility that under conditions of Lis1 reduced expression, neurons experience an oscillatory neuron-glial association prior to the multipolar stage; and (2 we hypothesized that observed morphology variations in rats and mice may be explained by a single difference in the way that Lis1 and DCX stimulate bipolar motility. From this we make the following predictions: (1 under reduced Lis1 and enhanced DCX expression, we predict a reduced bipolar migration in rats, and (2 under enhanced DCX expression in mice we predict a normal or a higher bipolar migration. Conclusions We present here a system-wide computational model of neuronal migration that integrates theory and data within a
McCreery, Douglas; Cogan, Stuart; Kane, Sheryl; Pikov, Victor
Objective. To quantify relations between the neuronal activity recorded with chronically-implanted intracortical microelectrodes and the histology of the surrounding tissue, using radial distance from the tip sites and time after array implantation as parameters. Approach. ‘Utah’-type intracortical microelectrode arrays were implanted into cats’ sensorimotor cortex for 275-364 days. The brain tissue around the implants was immuno-stained for the neuronal marker NeuN and for the astrocyte marker GFAP. Pearson’s product-moment correlations were used to quantify the relations between these markers and the amplitudes of the recorded neuronal action potentials (APs) and their signal-to-noise ratios (S/N). Main results. S/N was more stable over post-implant time than was AP amplitude, but its increased correlation with neuronal density after many months indicates ongoing loss of neurons around the microelectrodes. S/N was correlated with neuron density out to at least 140 μm from the microelectrodes, while AP amplitude was correlated with neuron density and GFAP density within ˜80 μm. Correlations between AP amplitude and histology markers (GFAP and NeuN density) were strongest immediately after implantation, while correlation between the neuron density and S/N was strongest near the time the animals were sacrificed. Unlike AP amplitude, there was no significant correlation between S/N and density of GFAP around the tip sites. Significance. Our findings indicate an evolving interaction between changes in the tissue surrounding the microelectrodes and the microelectrode’s electrical properties. Ongoing loss of neurons around recording microelectrodes, and the interactions between their delayed electrical deterioration and early tissue scarring around the tips appear to pose the greatest threats to the microelectrodes’ long-term functionality.
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
Full Text Available The anterior cingulate cortex (ACC is thought to be important for acute pain perception as well as the development of chronic pain after peripheral nerve injury. Nevertheless, how ACC neurons respond to sensory stimulation under chronic pain states is not well understood. Here, we used an in vivo two-photon imaging technique to monitor the activity of individual neurons in the ACC of awake, head restrained mice. Calcium imaging in the dorsal ACC revealed robust somatic activity in layer 5 (L5 pyramidal neurons in response to peripheral noxious stimuli, and the degree of evoked activity was correlated with the intensity of noxious stimulation. Furthermore, the activation of ACC neurons occurred bilaterally upon noxious stimulation to either contralateral or ipsilateral hind paws. Notably, with nerve injury-induced neuropathic pain in one limb, L5 pyramidal neurons in both sides of the ACC showed enhanced activity in the absence or presence of pain stimuli. These results reveal hyperactivity of L5 pyramidal neurons in the bilateral ACC during the development of neuropathic pain.
Gabbott, Paul L; Rolls, Edmund T
The medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) of humans and macaques is an integral part of the default mode network and is a brain region that shows increased activation in the resting state. A previous paper from our laboratory reported significantly increased firing rates of neurons in the macaque subgenual cingulate cortex, Brodmann area (BA) 25, during disengagement from a task and also during slow wave sleep [E.T. Rolls et al. (2003) J. Neurophysiology, 90, 134-142]. Here we report the finding that there are neurons in other areas of mPFC that also increase their firing rates during disengagement from a task, drowsiness and eye-closure. During the neurophysiological recording of single mPFC cells (n = 249) in BAs 9, 10, 13 m, 14c, 24b and especially pregenual area 32, populations of neurons were identified whose firing rates altered significantly with eye-closure compared with eye-opening. Three types of neuron were identified: Type 1 cells (28.1% of the total population) significantly increased (mean + 329%; P ≪ 0.01) their average firing rate with eye-closure, from 3.1 spikes/s when awake to 10.2 spikes/s when asleep; Type 2 cells (6.0%) significantly decreased (mean -68%; P areas of mPFC, implicated in the anterior default mode network, there is a substantial population of neurons that significantly increase their firing rates during periods of eye-closure. Such neurons may be part of an interconnected network of distributed brain regions that are more active during periods of relaxed wakefulness than during attention-demanding tasks. © 2013 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
Guo, Bao-Qiang; Yan, Chong-Huai; Cai, Shi-Zhong; Yuan, Xiao-Bing; Shen, Xiao-Ming
Highlights: ► Low level MeHg exposure causes migratory defect of rat cerebrocortical neurons. ► The migration defect is due to the impact of MeHg on the neuronal migration itself. ► Rho GTPases seem to be involved in MeHg-induced disruption of neuronal migration. -- Abstract: We determined the effects of low-level prenatal MeHg exposure on neuronal migration in the developing rat cerebral cortex using in utero electroporation. We used offspring rats born to dams that had been exposed to saline or various doses of MeHg (0.01 mg/kg/day, 0.1 mg/kg/day, and 1 mg/kg/day) from gestational day (GD) 11–21. Immunohistochemical examination of the brains of the offspring was conducted on postnatal day (PND) 0, PND3, and PND7. Our results showed that prenatal exposure to low levels of MeHg (0.1 mg/kg/day or 1 mg/kg/day) during the critical stage in neuronal migration resulted in migration defects of the cerebrocortical neurons in offspring rats. Importantly, our data revealed that the abnormal neuronal distribution induced by MeHg was not caused by altered proliferation of neural progenitor cells (NPCs), induction of apoptosis of NPCs and/or newborn neurons, abnormal differentiation of NPCs, and the morphological changes of radial glial scaffold, indicating that the defective neuronal positioning triggered by exposure to low-dose of MeHg is due to the impacts of MeHg on the process of neuronal migration itself. Moreover, we demonstrated that in utero exposure to low-level MeHg suppresses the expression of Rac1, Cdc42, and RhoA, which play key roles in the migration of cerebrocortical neurons during the early stage of brain development, suggesting that the MeHg-induced migratory disturbance of cerebrocortical neurons is likely associated with the Rho GTPases signal pathway. In conclusion, our results provide a novel perspective on clarifying the mechanisms underlying the impairment of neuronal migration induced by MeHg
Fung, Samantha J.; Joshi, Dipesh; Allen, Katherine M.; Sivagnanasundaram, Sinthuja; Rothmond, Debora A.; Saunders, Richard; Noble, Pamela L.; Webster, Maree J.; Shannon Weickert, Cynthia
Postnatal neurogenesis occurs in the subventricular zone and dentate gyrus, and evidence suggests that new neurons may be present in additional regions of the mature primate brain, including the prefrontal cortex (PFC). Addition of new neurons to the PFC implies local generation of neurons or migration from areas such as the subventricular zone. We examined the putative contribution of new, migrating neurons to postnatal cortical development by determining the density of neurons in white matter subjacent to the cortex and measuring expression of doublecortin (DCX), a microtubule-associated protein involved in neuronal migration, in humans and rhesus macaques. We found a striking decline in DCX expression (human and macaque) and density of white matter neurons (humans) during infancy, consistent with the arrival of new neurons in the early postnatal cortex. Considering the expansion of the brain during this time, the decline in white matter neuron density does not necessarily indicate reduced total numbers of white matter neurons in early postnatal life. Furthermore, numerous cells in the white matter and deep grey matter were positive for the migration-associated glycoprotein polysialiated-neuronal cell adhesion molecule and GAD65/67, suggesting that immature migrating neurons in the adult may be GABAergic. We also examined DCX mRNA in the PFC of adult schizophrenia patients (n = 37) and matched controls (n = 37) and did not find any difference in DCX mRNA expression. However, we report a negative correlation between DCX mRNA expression and white matter neuron density in adult schizophrenia patients, in contrast to a positive correlation in human development where DCX mRNA and white matter neuron density are higher earlier in life. Accumulation of neurons in the white matter in schizophrenia would be congruent with a negative correlation between DCX mRNA and white matter neuron density and support the hypothesis of a migration deficit in schizophrenia. PMID
Samantha J Fung
Full Text Available Postnatal neurogenesis occurs in the subventricular zone and dentate gyrus, and evidence suggests that new neurons may be present in additional regions of the mature primate brain, including the prefrontal cortex (PFC. Addition of new neurons to the PFC implies local generation of neurons or migration from areas such as the subventricular zone. We examined the putative contribution of new, migrating neurons to postnatal cortical development by determining the density of neurons in white matter subjacent to the cortex and measuring expression of doublecortin (DCX, a microtubule-associated protein involved in neuronal migration, in humans and rhesus macaques. We found a striking decline in DCX expression (human and macaque and density of white matter neurons (humans during infancy, consistent with the arrival of new neurons in the early postnatal cortex. Considering the expansion of the brain during this time, the decline in white matter neuron density does not necessarily indicate reduced total numbers of white matter neurons in early postnatal life. Furthermore, numerous cells in the white matter and deep grey matter were positive for the migration-associated glycoprotein polysialiated-neuronal cell adhesion molecule and GAD65/67, suggesting that immature migrating neurons in the adult may be GABAergic. We also examined DCX mRNA in the PFC of adult schizophrenia patients (n = 37 and matched controls (n = 37 and did not find any difference in DCX mRNA expression. However, we report a negative correlation between DCX mRNA expression and white matter neuron density in adult schizophrenia patients, in contrast to a positive correlation in human development where DCX mRNA and white matter neuron density are higher earlier in life. Accumulation of neurons in the white matter in schizophrenia would be congruent with a negative correlation between DCX mRNA and white matter neuron density and support the hypothesis of a migration deficit in
Hyodo-Taguchi, Yasuko; Ishikawa, Yuji; Hirobe, Tomohisa; Fushiki, Shinji; Kinoshita, Chikako.
We investigated the effects of continuous exposure to γ-rays during corticogenesis on the migration of neuronal cells in developing cerebral cortex. Pregnant mice were injected with 0.5 mg of bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) on day 14 of gestation to label cells in the S phase. The mice were then exposed to 137 Cs γ-rays (dose rates of 0.1, 0.3, and 0.94 Gy/day) continuously for 3 days. Brains from 17-day-old embryos and from offspring at 3 and 8 weeks after birth were processed immunohistochemically to track the movements of BrdU-labeled cells. Comparative analyses of the distribution pattern of BrdU-labeled cells in the cerebral cortex revealed that the migration of neurons was delayed during the embryonic period in mice irradiated at 0.94 Gy/day, in 3-week-old mice, there was a significant difference in the distribution pattern of BrdU-labeled cells in the cerebral cortex between the mice irradiated prenatally and control, and in 8-week-old mice, there were no differences in the distribution pattern of BrdU-labeled cells between control and animals irradiated with 0.1 and 0.3 Gy/day. In contrast, in the animals irradiated with 0.94 Gy/day, the significant difference in the distribution pattern of the labeled cells relative to control was maintained. These results suggest that the migration of neuronal cells in mouse cerebral cortex is disturbed by continuous prenatal irradiation at low-dose and some modificational process occurred during the postnatal period. (author)
Sigwald, Eric L; Genoud, Manuel E; Giachero, Marcelo; de Olmos, Soledad; Molina, Víctor A; Lorenzo, Alfredo
The retrosplenial cortex (RSC) is one of the largest cortical areas in rodents, and is subdivided in two main regions, A29 and A30, according to their cytoarchitectural organization and connectivities. However, very little is known about the functional activity of each RSC subdivision during the execution of complex cognitive tasks. Here, we used a well-established fear learning protocol that induced long-lasting contextual fear memory and showed that during evocation of the fear memory, the expression of early growth response gene 1 was up-regulated in A30, and in other brain areas implicated in fear and spatial memory, however, was down-regulated in A29, including layers IV and V. To search for the participation of A29 on fear memory, we triggered selective degeneration of neurons within cortical layers IV and V of A29 by using a non-invasive protocol that takes advantage of the vulnerability that these neurons have MK801-toxicity and the modulation of this neurodegeneration by testosterone. Application of 5 mg/kg MK801 in intact males induced negligible neuronal degeneration of A29 neurons and had no impact on fear memory retrieval. However, in orchiectomized rats, 5 mg/kg MK801 induced overt degeneration of layers IV-V neurons of A29, significantly impairing fear memory recall. Degeneration of A29 neurons did not affect exploratory or anxiety-related behavior nor altered unconditioned freezing. Importantly, protecting A29 neurons from MK801-toxicity by testosterone preserved fear memory recall in orchiectomized rats. Thus, neurons within cortical layers IV-V of A29 are critically required for efficient retrieval of contextual fear memory.
Katerina D Oikonomou
Full Text Available Spiny neurons of amygdala, striatum, and cerebral cortex share four interesting features:  they are the most abundant cell type within their respective brain area,  covered by thousands of thorny protrusions (dendritic spines,  possess high levels of dendritic NMDA conductances, and  experience sustained somatic depolarizations in vivo and in vitro (UP states. In all spiny neurons of the forebrain, adequate glutamatergic inputs generate dendritic plateau potentials (dendritic UP states characterized by (i fast rise, (ii plateau phase lasting several hundred milliseconds and (iii abrupt decline at the end of the plateau phase. The dendritic plateau potential propagates towards the cell body decrementally to induce a long-lasting (longer than 100 ms, most often 200 – 800 ms steady depolarization (~20 mV amplitude, which resembles a neuronal UP state. Based on voltage-sensitive dye imaging, the plateau depolarization in the soma is precisely time-locked to the regenerative plateau potential taking place in the dendrite. The somatic plateau rises after the onset of the dendritic voltage transient and collapses with the breakdown of the dendritic plateau depolarization. We hypothesize that neuronal UP states in vivo reflect the occurrence of dendritic plateau potentials (dendritic UP states. We propose that the somatic voltage waveform during a neuronal UP state is determined by dendritic plateau potentials. A mammalian spiny neuron uses dendritic plateau potentials to detect and transform coherent network activity into a ubiquitous neuronal UP state. The biophysical properties of dendritic plateau potentials allow neurons to quickly attune to the ongoing network activity, as well as secure the stable amplitudes of successive UP states.
Full Text Available Accumulating evidence suggests that many brain diseases are associated with defects in neuronal migration, suggesting that this step of neurogenesis is critical for brain organization. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying neuronal migration remain largely unknown. Here, we identified the zinc-finger transcriptional repressor RP58 as a key regulator of neuronal migration via multipolar-to-bipolar transition. RP58−/− neurons exhibited severe defects in the formation of leading processes and never shifted to the locomotion mode. Cre-mediated deletion of RP58 using in utero electroporation in RP58flox/flox mice revealed that RP58 functions in cell-autonomous multipolar-to-bipolar transition, independent of cell-cycle exit. Finally, we found that RP58 represses Ngn2 transcription to regulate the Ngn2-Rnd2 pathway; Ngn2 knockdown rescued migration defects of the RP58−/− neurons. Our findings highlight the critical role of RP58 in multipolar-to-bipolar transition via suppression of the Ngn2-Rnd2 pathway in the developing cerebral cortex.
Wang, Feng; Chen, Minggui; Yan, Yin; Zhaoping, Li; Li, Wu
Visual perception is influenced by attention deployed voluntarily or triggered involuntarily by salient stimuli. Modulation of visual cortical processing by voluntary or endogenous attention has been extensively studied, but much less is known about how involuntary or exogenous attention affects responses of visual cortical neurons. Using implanted microelectrode arrays, we examined the effects of exogenous attention on neuronal responses in the primary visual cortex (V1) of awake monkeys. A bright annular cue was flashed either around the receptive fields of recorded neurons or in the opposite visual field to capture attention. A subsequent grating stimulus probed the cue-induced effects. In a fixation task, when the cue-to-probe stimulus onset asynchrony (SOA) was visual fields weakened or diminished both the physiological and behavioral cueing effects. Our findings indicate that exogenous attention significantly modulates V1 responses and that the modulation strength depends on both novelty and task relevance of the stimulus. Significance statement: Visual attention can be involuntarily captured by a sudden appearance of a conspicuous object, allowing rapid reactions to unexpected events of significance. The current study discovered a correlate of this effect in monkey primary visual cortex. An abrupt, salient, flash enhanced neuronal responses, and shortened the animal's reaction time, to a subsequent visual probe stimulus at the same location. However, the enhancement of the neural responses diminished after repeated exposures to this flash if the animal was not required to react to the probe. Moreover, a second, simultaneous, flash at another location weakened the neuronal and behavioral effects of the first one. These findings revealed, beyond the observations reported so far, the effects of exogenous attention in the brain. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/3513419-11$15.00/0.
DeFelipe, J.; Jones, E.G.
Light and electron microscopic methods were used to examine the neurons in the monkey cerebral cortex labeled autoradiographically following the uptake and transport of [ 3 H]-gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA). Nonpyramidal cell somata in the sensory-motor areas and primary visual area (area 17) were labeled close to the injection site and at distances of 1 to 1.5 mm beyond the injection site, indicating labeling by retrograde axoplasmic transport. This labeling occurred preferentially in the vertical dimension of the cortex. Prior injections of colchicine, an inhibitor of axoplasmic transport, abolished all labeling of somata except those within the injection site. In each area, injections of superficial layers (I to III) produced labeling of clusters of cell somata in layer V, and injections of the deep layers (V and VI) produced labeling of clusters of cell somata in layers II and III. In area 17, injections of the superficial layers produced dense retrograde cell labeling in three bands: in layers IVC, VA, and VI. Vertically oriented chains of silver grains linked the injection sites with the resulting labeled cell clusters. In all areas, the labeling of cells in the horizontal dimension was insignificant. Electron microscopic examination of labeled neurons confirms that the neurons labeled at a distance from an injection site are nonpyramidal neurons, many with somata so small that they would be mistaken for neuroglial cells light microscopically. They receive few axosomatic synapses, most of which have symmetric membrane thickenings. The vertical chains of silver grains overlie neuronal processes identifiable as both dendrites and myelinated axons, but unmyelinated axons may also be included. The clusters of [ 3 H]GABA-labeled cells are joined to one another and to adjacent unlabeled cells by junctional complexes, including puncta adherentia and multi-lamellar cisternal complexes
Daniel James Miller
Full Text Available Determining the cellular composition of specific brain regions is crucial to our understanding of the function of neurobiological systems. It is therefore useful to identify the extent to which different methods agree when estimating the same properties of brain circuitry. In this study, we estimated the number of neuronal and non-neuronal cells in the primary visual cortex (area 17 or V1 of both hemispheres from a single chimpanzee. Specifically, we processed samples distributed across V1 of the right hemisphere after cortex was flattened into a sheet using two variations of the isotropic fractionator cell and neuron counting method. We processed the left hemisphere as serial brain slices for stereological investigation. The goal of this study was to evaluate the agreement between these methods in the most direct manner possible by comparing estimates of cell density across one brain region of interest in a single individual. In our hands, these methods produced similar estimates of the total cellular population (approximately 1 billion as well as the number of neurons (approximately 675 million in chimpanzee V1, providing evidence that both techniques estimate the same parameters of interest. In addition, our results indicate the strengths of each distinct tissue preparation procedure, highlighting the importance of attention to anatomical detail. In summary, we found that the isotropic fractionator and the stereological optical fractionator produced concordant estimates of the cellular composition of V1, and that this result supports the conclusion that chimpanzees conform to the primate pattern of exceptionally high packing density in V1. Ultimately, our data suggest that investigators can optimize their experimental approach by using any of these counting methods to obtain reliable cell and neuron counts.
Full Text Available This study finds a neuronal correlate of auditory perceptual streaming in the primary auditory cortex for sequences of tone complexes that have the same amplitude spectrum but a different phase spectrum. Our finding is based on microelectrode recordings of multiunit activity from 270 cortical sites in three awake macaque monkeys. The monkeys were presented with repeated sequences of a tone triplet that consisted of an A tone, a B tone, another A tone and then a pause. The A and B tones were composed of unresolved harmonics formed by adding the harmonics in cosine phase, in alternating phase, or in random phase. A previous psychophysical study on humans revealed that when the A and B tones are similar, humans integrate them into a single auditory stream; when the A and B tones are dissimilar, humans segregate them into separate auditory streams. We found that the similarity of neuronal rate responses to the triplets was highest when all A and B tones had cosine phase. Similarity was intermediate when the A tones had cosine phase and the B tones had alternating phase. Similarity was lowest when the A tones had cosine phase and the B tones had random phase. The present study corroborates and extends previous reports, showing similar correspondences between neuronal activity in the primary auditory cortex and auditory streaming of sound sequences. It also is consistent with Fishman’s population separation model of auditory streaming.
Knyazeva, Stanislava; Selezneva, Elena; Gorkin, Alexander; Aggelopoulos, Nikolaos C; Brosch, Michael
This study finds a neuronal correlate of auditory perceptual streaming in the primary auditory cortex for sequences of tone complexes that have the same amplitude spectrum but a different phase spectrum. Our finding is based on microelectrode recordings of multiunit activity from 270 cortical sites in three awake macaque monkeys. The monkeys were presented with repeated sequences of a tone triplet that consisted of an A tone, a B tone, another A tone and then a pause. The A and B tones were composed of unresolved harmonics formed by adding the harmonics in cosine phase, in alternating phase, or in random phase. A previous psychophysical study on humans revealed that when the A and B tones are similar, humans integrate them into a single auditory stream; when the A and B tones are dissimilar, humans segregate them into separate auditory streams. We found that the similarity of neuronal rate responses to the triplets was highest when all A and B tones had cosine phase. Similarity was intermediate when the A tones had cosine phase and the B tones had alternating phase. Similarity was lowest when the A tones had cosine phase and the B tones had random phase. The present study corroborates and extends previous reports, showing similar correspondences between neuronal activity in the primary auditory cortex and auditory streaming of sound sequences. It also is consistent with Fishman's population separation model of auditory streaming.
Romanski, L M; Diehl, M M
Studies have indicated that temporal and prefrontal brain regions process face and vocal information. Face-selective and vocalization-responsive neurons have been demonstrated in the ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC) and some prefrontal cells preferentially respond to combinations of face and corresponding vocalizations. These studies suggest VLPFC in nonhuman primates may play a role in communication that is similar to the role of inferior frontal regions in human language processing. If VLPFC is involved in communication, information about a speaker's face including identity, face-view, gaze, and emotional expression might be encoded by prefrontal neurons. In the following study, we examined the effect of face-view in ventrolateral prefrontal neurons by testing cells with auditory, visual, and a set of human and monkey faces rotated through 0°, 30°, 60°, 90°, and -30°. Prefrontal neurons responded selectively to either the identity of the face presented (human or monkey) or to the specific view of the face/head, or to both identity and face-view. Neurons which were affected by the identity of the face most often showed an increase in firing in the second part of the stimulus period. Neurons that were selective for face-view typically preferred forward face-view stimuli (0° and 30° rotation). The neurons which were selective for forward face-view were also auditory responsive compared to other neurons which responded to other views or were unselective which were not auditory responsive. Our analysis showed that the human forward face (0°) was decoded better and also contained the most information relative to other face-views. Our findings confirm a role for VLPFC in the processing and integration of face and vocalization information and add to the growing body of evidence that the primate ventrolateral prefrontal cortex plays a prominent role in social communication and is an important model in understanding the cellular mechanisms of communication
Full Text Available In the auditory pathway, the inferior colliculus (IC receives and integrates excitatory and inhibitory inputs from the lower auditory nuclei, contralateral IC, and auditory cortex (AC, and then uploads these inputs to the thalamus and cortex. Meanwhile, the AC modulates the sound signal processing of IC neurons, including their latency (i.e., first-spike latency. Excitatory and inhibitory corticofugal projections to the IC may shorten and prolong the latency of IC neurons, respectively. However, the synaptic mechanisms underlying the corticofugal latency modulation of IC neurons remain unclear. Thus, this study probed these mechanisms via in vivo intracellular recording and acoustic and focal electric stimulation. The AC latency modulation of IC neurons is possibly mediated by pre-spike depolarization duration, pre-spike hyperpolarization duration, and spike onset time. This study suggests an effective strategy for the timing sequence determination of auditory information uploaded to the thalamus and cortex.
Collins, Christine E; Turner, Emily C; Sawyer, Eva Kille; Reed, Jamie L; Young, Nicole A; Flaherty, David K; Kaas, Jon H
The density of cells and neurons in the neocortex of many mammals varies across cortical areas and regions. This variability is, perhaps, most pronounced in primates. Nonuniformity in the composition of cortex suggests regions of the cortex have different specializations. Specifically, regions with densely packed neurons contain smaller neurons that are activated by relatively few inputs, thereby preserving information, whereas regions that are less densely packed have larger neurons that have more integrative functions. Here we present the numbers of cells and neurons for 742 discrete locations across the neocortex in a chimpanzee. Using isotropic fractionation and flow fractionation methods for cell and neuron counts, we estimate that neocortex of one hemisphere contains 9.5 billion cells and 3.7 billion neurons. Primary visual cortex occupies 35 cm(2) of surface, 10% of the total, and contains 737 million densely packed neurons, 20% of the total neurons contained within the hemisphere. Other areas of high neuron packing include secondary visual areas, somatosensory cortex, and prefrontal granular cortex. Areas of low levels of neuron packing density include motor and premotor cortex. These values reflect those obtained from more limited samples of cortex in humans and other primates.
Rossi-Pool, Román; Zainos, Antonio; Alvarez, Manuel; Zizumbo, Jerónimo; Vergara, José; Romo, Ranulfo
When trained monkeys discriminate the temporal structure of two sequential vibrotactile stimuli, dorsal premotor cortex (DPC) showed high heterogeneity among its neuronal responses. Notably, DPC neurons coded stimulus patterns as broader categories and signaled them during working memory, comparison, and postponed decision periods. Here, we show that such population activity can be condensed into two major coding components: one that persistently represented in working memory both the first stimulus identity and the postponed informed choice and another that transiently coded the initial sensory information and the result of the comparison between the two stimuli. Additionally, we identified relevant signals that coded the timing of task events. These temporal and task-parameter readouts were shown to be strongly linked to the monkeys' behavior when contrasted to those obtained in a non-demanding cognitive control task and during error trials. These signals, hidden in the heterogeneity, were prominently represented by the DPC population response. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Rule, Michael E.; Vargas-Irwin, Carlos; Donoghue, John P.; Truccolo, Wilson
Understanding the sources of variability in single-neuron spiking responses is an important open problem for the theory of neural coding. This variability is thought to result primarily from spontaneous collective dynamics in neuronal networks. Here, we investigate how well collective dynamics reflected in motor cortex local field potentials (LFPs) can account for spiking variability during motor behavior. Neural activity was recorded via microelectrode arrays implanted in ventral and dorsal premotor and primary motor cortices of non-human primates performing naturalistic 3-D reaching and grasping actions. Point process models were used to quantify how well LFP features accounted for spiking variability not explained by the measured 3-D reach and grasp kinematics. LFP features included the instantaneous magnitude, phase and analytic-signal components of narrow band-pass filtered (δ,θ,α,β) LFPs, and analytic signal and amplitude envelope features in higher-frequency bands. Multiband LFP features predicted single-neuron spiking (1ms resolution) with substantial accuracy as assessed via ROC analysis. Notably, however, models including both LFP and kinematics features displayed marginal improvement over kinematics-only models. Furthermore, the small predictive information added by LFP features to kinematic models was redundant to information available in fast-timescale (spiking history. Overall, information in multiband LFP features, although predictive of single-neuron spiking during movement execution, was redundant to information available in movement parameters and spiking history. Our findings suggest that, during movement execution, collective dynamics reflected in motor cortex LFPs primarily relate to sensorimotor processes directly controlling movement output, adding little explanatory power to variability not accounted by movement parameters. PMID:26157365
Full Text Available Previous studies have reported inconsistent effects of dietary restriction (DR on cortical inhibition. To clarify this issue, we examined the response properties of neurons in the primary visual cortex (V1 of DR and control groups of cats using in vivo extracellular single-unit recording techniques, and assessed the synthesis of inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA in the V1 of cats from both groups using immunohistochemical and Western blot techniques. Our results showed that the response of V1 neurons to visual stimuli was significantly modified by DR, as indicated by an enhanced selectivity for stimulus orientations and motion directions, decreased visually-evoked response, lowered spontaneous activity and increased signal-to-noise ratio in DR cats relative to control cats. Further, it was shown that, accompanied with these changes of neuronal responsiveness, GABA immunoreactivity and the expression of a key GABA-synthesizing enzyme GAD67 in the V1 were significantly increased by DR. These results demonstrate that DR may retard brain aging by increasing the intracortical inhibition effect and improve the function of visual cortical neurons in visual information processing. This DR-induced elevation of cortical inhibition may favor the brain in modulating energy expenditure based on food availability.
Yang, Jinfang; Wang, Qian; He, Fenfen; Ding, Yanxia; Sun, Qingyan; Hua, Tianmiao; Xi, Minmin
Previous studies have reported inconsistent effects of dietary restriction (DR) on cortical inhibition. To clarify this issue, we examined the response properties of neurons in the primary visual cortex (V1) of DR and control groups of cats using in vivo extracellular single-unit recording techniques, and assessed the synthesis of inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA in the V1 of cats from both groups using immunohistochemical and Western blot techniques. Our results showed that the response of V1 neurons to visual stimuli was significantly modified by DR, as indicated by an enhanced selectivity for stimulus orientations and motion directions, decreased visually-evoked response, lowered spontaneous activity and increased signal-to-noise ratio in DR cats relative to control cats. Further, it was shown that, accompanied with these changes of neuronal responsiveness, GABA immunoreactivity and the expression of a key GABA-synthesizing enzyme GAD67 in the V1 were significantly increased by DR. These results demonstrate that DR may retard brain aging by increasing the intracortical inhibition effect and improve the function of visual cortical neurons in visual information processing. This DR-induced elevation of cortical inhibition may favor the brain in modulating energy expenditure based on food availability.
Krause, Martin; Theiss, Carsten; Brüne, Martin
Von Economo neurons (VENs) are large bipolar projection neurons mainly located in layer Vb of anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and anterior insula. Both regions are involved in cognitive and emotional procedures and are functionally and anatomically altered in schizophrenia. Although the detailed function of VEN remains unclear, it has been suggested that these neurons are involved in the pathomechanism of schizophrenia. Here, we were interested in the question whether or not the VEN of schizophrenia patients would show abnormalities at the ultrastructural level. Accordingly, we examined the amount of lysosomal aggregations of the VEN in post-mortem tissue of patients with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and psychologically unaffected individuals, and compared the findings with aggregations in adjacent pyramidal cells in layer Vb of the ACC. VEN of patients with schizophrenia, and to a lesser degree individuals with bipolar disorder contained significantly more lysosomal aggregations compared with tissue from unaffected controls. Specifically, the larger amount of lysosomal aggregations in schizophrenia seemed to be selective for VEN, with no differences occurring in pyramidal cells. These findings may indicate that the VEN of schizophrenia patients are selectively vulnerable to neuronal damage. Anat Rec, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Anat Rec, 300:2017-2024, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Fekete, Christopher D; Goz, Roman U; Dinallo, Sean; Miralles, Celia P; Chiou, Tzu-Ting; Bear, John; Fiondella, Christopher G; LoTurco, Joseph J; De Blas, Angel L
Collybistin (CB) is a guanine nucleotide exchange factor selectively localized to γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA)ergic and glycinergic postsynapses. Active CB interacts with gephyrin, inducing the submembranous clustering and the postsynaptic accumulation of gephyrin, which is a scaffold protein that recruits GABA A receptors (GABA A Rs) at the postsynapse. CB is expressed with or without a src homology 3 (SH3) domain. We have previously reported the effects on GABAergic synapses of the acute overexpression of CB SH3- or CB SH3+ in cultured hippocampal (HP) neurons. In the present communication, we are studying the effects on GABAergic synapses after chronic in vivo transgenic expression of CB2 SH3- or CB2 SH3+ in neurons of the adult rat cerebral cortex. The embryonic precursors of these cortical neurons were in utero electroporated with CB SH3- or CB SH3+ DNAs, migrated to the appropriate cortical layer, and became integrated in cortical circuits. The results show that: 1) the strength of inhibitory synapses in vivo can be enhanced by increasing the expression of CB in neurons; and 2) there are significant differences in the results between in vivo and in culture studies. J. Comp. Neurol. 525:1291-1311, 2017. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Tan, Andrew Y Y; Brown, Brandon D; Scholl, Benjamin; Mohanty, Deepankar; Priebe, Nicholas J
Primary visual cortex (V1) is the site at which orientation selectivity emerges in mammals: visual thalamus afferents to V1 respond equally to all stimulus orientations, whereas their target V1 neurons respond selectively to stimulus orientation. The emergence of orientation selectivity in V1 has long served as a model for investigating cortical computation. Recent evidence for orientation selectivity in mouse V1 opens cortical computation to dissection by genetic and imaging tools, but also raises two essential questions: (1) How does orientation selectivity in mouse V1 neurons compare with that in previously described species? (2) What is the synaptic basis for orientation selectivity in mouse V1? A comparison of orientation selectivity in mouse and in cat, where such measures have traditionally been made, reveals that orientation selectivity in mouse V1 is weaker than in cat V1, but that spike threshold plays a similar role in narrowing selectivity between membrane potential and spike rate. To uncover the synaptic basis for orientation selectivity, we made whole-cell recordings in vivo from mouse V1 neurons, comparing neuronal input selectivity-based on membrane potential, synaptic excitation, and synaptic inhibition-to output selectivity based on spiking. We found that a neuron's excitatory and inhibitory inputs are selective for the same stimulus orientations as is its membrane potential response, and that inhibitory selectivity is not broader than excitatory selectivity. Inhibition has different dynamics than excitation, adapting more rapidly. In neurons with temporally modulated responses, the timing of excitation and inhibition was different in mice and cats.
Joshi, Ankur; Kalappa, Bopanna I.; Anderson, Charles T.
The neuromodulator acetylcholine (ACh) is crucial for several cognitive functions, such as perception, attention, and learning and memory. Whereas, in most cases, the cellular circuits or the specific neurons via which ACh exerts its cognitive effects remain unknown, it is known that auditory cortex (AC) neurons projecting from layer 5B (L5B) to the inferior colliculus, corticocollicular neurons, are required for cholinergic-mediated relearning of sound localization after occlusion of one ear. Therefore, elucidation of the effects of ACh on the excitability of corticocollicular neurons will bridge the cell-specific and cognitive properties of ACh. Because AC L5B contains another class of neurons that project to the contralateral cortex, corticocallosal neurons, to identify the cell-specific mechanisms that enable corticocollicular neurons to participate in sound localization relearning, we investigated the effects of ACh release on both L5B corticocallosal and corticocollicular neurons. Using in vitro electrophysiology and optogenetics in mouse brain slices, we found that ACh generated nicotinic ACh receptor (nAChR)-mediated depolarizing potentials and muscarinic ACh receptor (mAChR)-mediated hyperpolarizing potentials in AC L5B corticocallosal neurons. In corticocollicular neurons, ACh release also generated nAChR-mediated depolarizing potentials. However, in contrast to the mAChR-mediated hyperpolarizing potentials in corticocallosal neurons, ACh generated prolonged mAChR-mediated depolarizing potentials in corticocollicular neurons. These prolonged depolarizing potentials generated persistent firing in corticocollicular neurons, whereas corticocallosal neurons lacking mAChR-mediated depolarizing potentials did not show persistent firing. We propose that ACh-mediated persistent firing in corticocollicular neurons may represent a critical mechanism required for learning-induced plasticity in AC. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Acetylcholine (ACh) is crucial for cognitive
Bitanihirwe, Byron K Y; Woo, Tsung-Ung W
Parvalbumin (PV)-containing neurons are functionally compromised in schizophrenia. Using double in situ hybridization in postmortem human prefrontal cortex, we found that the messenger RNA (mRNA) for the γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) transporter GAT-1 was undetectable in 22-41% of PV neurons in layers 3-4 in schizophrenia. In the remaining PV neurons with detectable GAT-1 mRNA, transcript expression was decreased by 26% in layer 3. Hence, the dysfunction of PV neurons involves the molecular dysregulation of presynaptic GABA reuptake. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
Somogyi, P.; Freund, T.F.; Kisvarday, Z.F.; Halasz, N.
[ 3 H]GABA was injected into the visual cortex of rats in vivo. The labeled amino acid was demonstrated by autoradiography using semithin sections of Golgi material. Selective accumulation was seen in the perikarya of Golgi-stained, gold-toned, aspinous stellate neurons. Spine-laden pyramidal-like cells did not show labeling. This method gives direct information about the dendritic arborization of a neuron, and its putative transmitter, and allows the identification of its synaptic connections. (Auth.)
Vallès, Astrid; Granic, Ivica; De Weerd, Peter; Martens, Gerard J. M.
Modulation of cortical network connectivity is crucial for an adaptive response to experience. In the rat barrel cortex, long-term sensory stimulation induces cortical network modifications and neuronal response changes of which the molecular basis is unknown. Here, we show that long-term somatosensory stimulation by enriched environment…
Full Text Available Previous studies support the notion that sensorimotor learning involves multiple processes. We investigated the neuronal basis of these processes by recording single-unit activity in motor cortex of non-human primates (Macaca fascicularis, during adaptation to force-field perturbations. Perturbed trials (reaching to one direction were practiced along with unperturbed trials (to other directions. The number of perturbed trials relative to the unperturbed ones was either low or high, in two separate practice schedules. Unsurprisingly, practice under high-rate resulted in faster learning with more pronounced generalization, as compared to the low-rate practice. However, generalization and retention of behavioral and neuronal effects following practice in high-rate were less stable; namely, the faster learning was forgotten faster. We examined two subgroups of cells and showed that, during learning, the changes in firing-rate in one subgroup depended on the number of practiced trials, but not on time. In contrast, changes in the second subgroup depended on time and practice; the changes in firing-rate, following the same number of perturbed trials, were larger under high-rate than low-rate learning. After learning, the neuronal changes gradually decayed. In the first subgroup, the decay pace did not depend on the practice rate, whereas in the second subgroup, the decay pace was greater following high-rate practice. This group shows neuronal representation that mirrors the behavioral performance, evolving faster but also decaying faster at learning under high-rate, as compared to low-rate. The results suggest that the stability of a new learned skill and its neuronal representation are affected by the acquisition schedule.
Moore, R. Channing; Lee, Tyler; Theunissen, Frédéric E.
Given the extraordinary ability of humans and animals to recognize communication signals over a background of noise, describing noise invariant neural responses is critical not only to pinpoint the brain regions that are mediating our robust perceptions but also to understand the neural computations that are performing these tasks and the underlying circuitry. Although invariant neural responses, such as rotation-invariant face cells, are well described in the visual system, high-level auditory neurons that can represent the same behaviorally relevant signal in a range of listening conditions have yet to be discovered. Here we found neurons in a secondary area of the avian auditory cortex that exhibit noise-invariant responses in the sense that they responded with similar spike patterns to song stimuli presented in silence and over a background of naturalistic noise. By characterizing the neurons' tuning in terms of their responses to modulations in the temporal and spectral envelope of the sound, we then show that noise invariance is partly achieved by selectively responding to long sounds with sharp spectral structure. Finally, to demonstrate that such computations could explain noise invariance, we designed a biologically inspired noise-filtering algorithm that can be used to separate song or speech from noise. This novel noise-filtering method performs as well as other state-of-the-art de-noising algorithms and could be used in clinical or consumer oriented applications. Our biologically inspired model also shows how high-level noise-invariant responses could be created from neural responses typically found in primary auditory cortex. PMID:23505354
Moore, R Channing; Lee, Tyler; Theunissen, Frédéric E
Given the extraordinary ability of humans and animals to recognize communication signals over a background of noise, describing noise invariant neural responses is critical not only to pinpoint the brain regions that are mediating our robust perceptions but also to understand the neural computations that are performing these tasks and the underlying circuitry. Although invariant neural responses, such as rotation-invariant face cells, are well described in the visual system, high-level auditory neurons that can represent the same behaviorally relevant signal in a range of listening conditions have yet to be discovered. Here we found neurons in a secondary area of the avian auditory cortex that exhibit noise-invariant responses in the sense that they responded with similar spike patterns to song stimuli presented in silence and over a background of naturalistic noise. By characterizing the neurons' tuning in terms of their responses to modulations in the temporal and spectral envelope of the sound, we then show that noise invariance is partly achieved by selectively responding to long sounds with sharp spectral structure. Finally, to demonstrate that such computations could explain noise invariance, we designed a biologically inspired noise-filtering algorithm that can be used to separate song or speech from noise. This novel noise-filtering method performs as well as other state-of-the-art de-noising algorithms and could be used in clinical or consumer oriented applications. Our biologically inspired model also shows how high-level noise-invariant responses could be created from neural responses typically found in primary auditory cortex.
R Channing Moore
Full Text Available Given the extraordinary ability of humans and animals to recognize communication signals over a background of noise, describing noise invariant neural responses is critical not only to pinpoint the brain regions that are mediating our robust perceptions but also to understand the neural computations that are performing these tasks and the underlying circuitry. Although invariant neural responses, such as rotation-invariant face cells, are well described in the visual system, high-level auditory neurons that can represent the same behaviorally relevant signal in a range of listening conditions have yet to be discovered. Here we found neurons in a secondary area of the avian auditory cortex that exhibit noise-invariant responses in the sense that they responded with similar spike patterns to song stimuli presented in silence and over a background of naturalistic noise. By characterizing the neurons' tuning in terms of their responses to modulations in the temporal and spectral envelope of the sound, we then show that noise invariance is partly achieved by selectively responding to long sounds with sharp spectral structure. Finally, to demonstrate that such computations could explain noise invariance, we designed a biologically inspired noise-filtering algorithm that can be used to separate song or speech from noise. This novel noise-filtering method performs as well as other state-of-the-art de-noising algorithms and could be used in clinical or consumer oriented applications. Our biologically inspired model also shows how high-level noise-invariant responses could be created from neural responses typically found in primary auditory cortex.
Full Text Available Abstract The neurons in neocortex layer I (LI provide inhibition to the cortical networks. Despite increasing use of mice for the study of brain functions, few studies were reported about mouse LI neurons. In the present study, we characterized intrinsic properties of LI neurons of the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC, a key cortical area for sensory and cognitive functions, by using whole-cell patch clamp recording approach. Seventy one neurons in LI and 12 pyramidal neurons in LII/III were recorded. Although all of the LI neurons expressed continuous adapting firing characteristics, the unsupervised clustering results revealed five groups in the ACC, including: Spontaneous firing neurons; Delay-sAHP neurons, Delay-fAHP neurons, and two groups of neurons with ADP, named ADP1 and ADP2, respectively. Using pharmacological approaches, we found that LI neurons received both excitatory (mediated by AMPA, kainate and NMDA receptors, and inhibitory inputs (which were mediated by GABAA receptors. Our studies provide the first report characterizing the electrophysiological properties of neurons in LI of the ACC from adult mice.
Egger, Robert; Narayanan, Rajeevan T.; Helmstaedter, Moritz; de Kock, Christiaan P. J.; Oberlaender, Marcel
The three-dimensional (3D) structure of neural circuits is commonly studied by reconstructing individual or small groups of neurons in separate preparations. Investigation of structural organization principles or quantification of dendritic and axonal innervation thus requires integration of many reconstructed morphologies into a common reference frame. Here we present a standardized 3D model of the rat vibrissal cortex and introduce an automated registration tool that allows for precise placement of single neuron reconstructions. We (1) developed an automated image processing pipeline to reconstruct 3D anatomical landmarks, i.e., the barrels in Layer 4, the pia and white matter surfaces and the blood vessel pattern from high-resolution images, (2) quantified these landmarks in 12 different rats, (3) generated an average 3D model of the vibrissal cortex and (4) used rigid transformations and stepwise linear scaling to register 94 neuron morphologies, reconstructed from in vivo stainings, to the standardized cortex model. We find that anatomical landmarks vary substantially across the vibrissal cortex within an individual rat. In contrast, the 3D layout of the entire vibrissal cortex remains remarkably preserved across animals. This allows for precise registration of individual neuron reconstructions with approximately 30 µm accuracy. Our approach could be used to reconstruct and standardize other anatomically defined brain areas and may ultimately lead to a precise digital reference atlas of the rat brain. PMID:23284282
Whitaker, Leslie R; Warren, Brandon L; Venniro, Marco; Harte, Tyler C; McPherson, Kylie B; Beidel, Jennifer; Bossert, Jennifer M; Shaham, Yavin; Bonci, Antonello; Hope, Bruce T
Learned associations between environmental stimuli and rewards drive goal-directed learning and motivated behavior. These memories are thought to be encoded by alterations within specific patterns of sparsely distributed neurons called neuronal ensembles that are activated selectively by reward-predictive stimuli. Here, we use the Fos promoter to identify strongly activated neuronal ensembles in rat prelimbic cortex (PLC) and assess altered intrinsic excitability after 10 d of operant food self-administration training (1 h/d). First, we used the Daun02 inactivation procedure in male FosLacZ-transgenic rats to ablate selectively Fos-expressing PLC neurons that were active during operant food self-administration. Selective ablation of these neurons decreased food seeking. We then used male FosGFP-transgenic rats to assess selective alterations of intrinsic excitability in Fos-expressing neuronal ensembles (FosGFP + ) that were activated during food self-administration and compared these with alterations in less activated non-ensemble neurons (FosGFP - ). Using whole-cell recordings of layer V pyramidal neurons in an ex vivo brain slice preparation, we found that operant self-administration increased excitability of FosGFP + neurons and decreased excitability of FosGFP - neurons. Increased excitability of FosGFP + neurons was driven by increased steady-state input resistance. Decreased excitability of FosGFP - neurons was driven by increased contribution of small-conductance calcium-activated potassium (SK) channels. Injections of the specific SK channel antagonist apamin into PLC increased Fos expression but had no effect on food seeking. Overall, operant learning increased intrinsic excitability of PLC Fos-expressing neuronal ensembles that play a role in food seeking but decreased intrinsic excitability of Fos - non-ensembles. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Prefrontal cortex activity plays a critical role in operant learning, but the underlying cellular mechanisms are
Full Text Available Calretinin is a calcium-binding protein often used as a marker for a subset of inhibitory interneurons in the mammalian neocortex. We studied the labeled cells in offspring from a cross of a Cre-dependent reporter line with the CR-ires-Cre mice, which express Cre-recombinase in the same pattern as calretinin. We found that in the mature visual cortex, only a minority of the cells that have expressed calretinin and Cre-recombinase during their lifetime is GABAergic and only about 20% are immunoreactive for calretinin. The reason behind this is that calretinin is transiently expressed in many cortical pyramidal neurons during development. To determine whether neurons that express or have expressed calretinin share any distinct functional characteristics, we recorded their visual response properties using GCaMP6s calcium imaging. The average orientation selectivity, size tuning, and temporal and spatial frequency tuning of this group of cells, however, match the response profile of the general neuronal population, revealing the lack of functional specialization for the features studied.
Full Text Available Carnivorans are a diverse group of mammals that includes carnivorous, omnivorous and herbivorous, domesticated and wild species, with a large range of brain sizes. Carnivory is one of several factors expected to be cognitively demanding for carnivorans due to a requirement to outsmart larger prey. On the other hand, large carnivoran species have high hunting costs and unreliable feeding patterns, which, given the high metabolic cost of brain neurons, might put them at risk of metabolic constraints regarding how many brain neurons they can afford, especially in the cerebral cortex. For a given cortical size, do carnivoran species have more cortical neurons than the herbivorous species they prey upon? We find they do not; carnivorans (cat, mongoose, dog, hyena, lion share with non-primates, including artiodactyls (the typical prey of large carnivorans, roughly the same relationship between cortical mass and number of neurons, which suggests that carnivorans are subject to the same evolutionary scaling rules as other non-primate clades. However, there are a few important exceptions. Carnivorans stand out in that the usual relationship between larger body, larger cortical mass and larger number of cortical neurons only applies to small and medium-sized species, and not beyond dogs: we find that the golden retriever dog has more cortical neurons than the striped hyena, African lion and even brown bear, even though the latter species have up to three times larger cortices than dogs. Remarkably, the brown bear cerebral cortex, the largest examined, only has as many neurons as the ten times smaller cat cerebral cortex, although it does have the expected ten times as many non-neuronal cells in the cerebral cortex compared to the cat. We also find that raccoons have dog-like numbers of neurons in their cat-sized brain, which makes them comparable to primates in neuronal density. Comparison of domestic and wild species suggests that the neuronal
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
Varea, Emilio; Belles, Maria; Vidueira, Sandra; Blasco-Ibáñez, José M; Crespo, Carlos; Pastor, Angel M; Nacher, Juan
Neuronal production persists during adulthood in the dentate gyrus and the olfactory bulb, where substantial numbers of immature neurons can be found. These cells can also be found in the paleocortex layer II of adult rodents, but in this case most of them have been generated during embryogenesis. Recent reports have described the presence of similar cells, with a wider distribution, in the cerebral cortex of adult cats and primates and have suggested that they may develop into interneurons. The objective of this study is to verify this hypothesis and to explore the origin of these immature neurons in adult cats. We have analyzed their distribution using immunohistochemical analysis of the polysialylated form of the neural cell adhesion molecule (PSA-NCAM) and their phenotype using markers of mature neurons and different interneuronal populations. Additionally, we have explored the origin of these cells administering 5'bromodeoxyuridine (5'BrdU) during adulthood. Immature neurons were widely dispersed in the cerebral cortex layers II and upper III, being specially abundant in the piriform and entorhinal cortices, in the ventral portions of the frontal and temporoparietal lobes, but relatively scarce in dorsal regions, such as the primary visual areas. Only a small fraction of PSA-NCAM expressing cells in layer II expressed the mature neuronal marker NeuN and virtually none of them expressed calcium binding proteins or neuropeptides. By contrast, most, if not all of these cells expressed the transcription factor Tbr-1, specifically expressed by pallium-derived principal neurons, but not CAMKII, a marker of mature excitatory neurons. Absence of PSA-NCAM/5'BrdU colocalization suggests that, as in rats, these cells were not generated during adulthood. Together, these results indicate that immature neurons in the adult cat cerebral cortex layer II are not recently generated and that they may differentiate into principal neurons.
Full Text Available Neuronal production persists during adulthood in the dentate gyrus and the olfactory bulb, where substantial numbers of immature neurons can be found. These cells can also be found in the paleocortex layer II of adult rodents, but in this case most of them have been generated during embryogenesis. Recent reports have described the presence of similar cells, with a wider distribution, in the cerebral cortex of adult cats and primates and have suggested that they may develop into interneurons. The objective of this study is to verify this hypothesis and to explore the origin of these immature neurons in adult cats. We have analysed their distribution using immunohistochemical analysis of the polysialylated form of the neural cell adhesion molecule (PSA-NCAM and their phenotype using markers of mature neurons and different interneuronal populations. Additionally, we have explored the origin of these cells administering 5'bromodeoxyuridine (5’BrdU during adulthood. Immature neurons were widely dispersed in the cerebral cortex layers II and upper III, being specially abundant in the piriform and entorhinal cortices, in the ventral portions of the frontal and temporoparietal lobes, but relatively scarce in dorsal regions, such as the primary visual areas. Only a small fraction of PSA-NCAM expressing cells in layer II expressed the mature neuronal marker NeuN and virtually none of them expressed calcium binding proteins or neuropeptides. By contrast, most, if not all of these cells expressed the transcription factor Tbr-1, specifically expressed by pallium-derived principal neurons, but not CAMKII, a marker of mature excitatory neurons. Absence of PSA-NCAM/5’BrdU co-localization suggests that, as in rats, these cells were not generated during adulthood. Together, these results indicate that immature neurons in the adult cat cerebral cortex layer II are not recently generated and that they may differentiate into principal neurons.
Wang, Min; Li, Min; Geng, Xiwen; Song, Zhimin; Albers, H Elliott; Yang, Maoquan; Zhang, Xiao; Xie, Jinlu; Qu, Qingyang; He, Tingting
The involvement of dopamine (DA) neuron loss in the etiology of Parkinson's disease has been well documented. The neural mechanisms underlying the effects of DA loss and the resultant motor dysfunction remain unknown. To gain insights into how loss of DA disrupts the electrical processes in the cortico-subcortical network, the present study explores the effects of DA neuron depletion on electrical activity in the primary motor cortex (M1), on the external and the internal segment of the globus pallidus (GPe and GPi respectively), and on their temporal relationships. Comparison of local field potentials (LFPs) in these brain regions from unilateral hemispheric DA neuron depleted rats and neurologically intact rats revealed that the spectrum power of LFPs in 12-70Hz (for M1, and GPe) and in 25-40Hz (for GPi) was significantly greater in the DA depleted rats than that in the control group. These changes were associated with a shortening of latency in LFP activities between M1 and GPe, from several hundred milliseconds in the intact animals to close to zero in the DA depleted animals. LFP oscillations in M1 were significantly more synchronized with those in GPe in the DA depleted rats compared with those in the control rats. By contrast, the synchronization of oscillation in LFP activities between M1 and GPi did not differ between the DA depleted and intact rats. Not surprisingly, rats that had DA neuron depletion spent more time along the ladder compared with the control rats. These data suggest that enhanced oscillatory activity and increased synchronization of LFPs may contribute to movement impairment in the rat model of Parkinson's disease. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Ectonucleotidases are membrane-bound or secreted proteins that hydrolyze extracellular nucleotides. Recently, we identified three ectonucleotidases that hydrolyze extracellular adenosine 5’-monophosphate (AMP to adenosine in primary somatosensory neurons. Currently, it is unclear which ectonucleotidases hydrolyze ATP and ADP in these neurons. Ectonucleoside triphosphate diphosphohydrolases (ENTPDs comprise a class of enzymes that dephosphorylate extracellular ATP and ADP. Here, we found that ENTPD3 (also known as NTPDase3 or CD39L3 was located in nociceptive and non-nociceptive neurons of the dorsal root ganglion (DRG, in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord, and in free nerve endings in the skin. To determine if ENTPD3 contributes directly to ATP and ADP hydrolysis in these tissues, we generated and characterized an Entpd3 knockout mouse. This mouse lacks ENTPD3 protein in all tissues examined, including the DRG, spinal cord, skin, and bladder. However, DRG and spinal cord tissues from Entpd3-/- mice showed no reduction in histochemical staining when ATP, ADP, AMP, or UTP were used as substrates. Additionally, using fast-scan cyclic voltammetry (FSCV, adenosine production was not impaired in the dorsal spinal cord of Entpd3-/- mice when the substrate ADP was applied. Further, Entpd3-/- mice did not differ in nociceptive behaviors when compared to wild-type mice, although Entpd3-/- mice showed a modest reduction in β-alanine-mediated itch. Taken together, our data indicate that deletion of Entpd3 does not impair ATP or ADP hydrolysis in primary somatosensory neurons or in dorsal spinal cord. Moreover, our data suggest there could be multiple ectonucleotidases that act redundantly to hydrolyze nucleotides in these regions of the nervous system.
Full Text Available Ectonucleotidases are membrane-bound or secreted proteins that hydrolyze extracellular nucleotides. Recently, we identified three ectonucleotidases that hydrolyze extracellular adenosine 5’-monophosphate (AMP to adenosine in primary somatosensory neurons. Currently, it is unclear which ectonucleotidases hydrolyze ATP and ADP in these neurons. Ectonucleoside triphosphate diphosphohydrolases (ENTPDs comprise a class of enzymes that dephosphorylate extracellular ATP and ADP. Here, we found that ENTPD3 (also known as NTPDase3 or CD39L3 was located in nociceptive and non-nociceptive neurons of the dorsal root ganglion (DRG, in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord, and in free nerve endings in the skin. To determine if ENTPD3 contributes directly to ATP and ADP hydrolysis in these tissues, we generated and characterized an Entpd3 knockout mouse. This mouse lacks ENTPD3 protein in all tissues examined, including the DRG, spinal cord, skin, and bladder. However, DRG and spinal cord tissues from Entpd3-/- mice showed no reduction in histochemical staining when ATP, ADP, AMP, or UTP were used as substrates. Additionally, using fast-scan cyclic voltammetry (FSCV, adenosine production was not impaired in the dorsal spinal cord of Entpd3-/- mice when the substrate ADP was applied. Further, Entpd3-/- mice did not differ in nociceptive behaviors when compared to wild-type mice, although Entpd3-/- mice showed a modest reduction in β-alanine-mediated itch. Taken together, our data indicate that deletion of Entpd3 does not impair ATP or ADP hydrolysis in primary somatosensory neurons or in dorsal spinal cord. Moreover, our data suggest there could be multiple ectonucleotidases that act redundantly to hydrolyze nucleotides in these regions of the nervous system.
Emily K. Stephens
Full Text Available Serotonin (5-HT selectively excites subpopulations of pyramidal neurons in the neocortex via activation of 5-HT2A (2A receptors coupled to Gq subtype G-protein alpha subunits. Gq-mediated excitatory responses have been attributed primarily to suppression of potassium conductances, including those mediated by KV7 potassium channels (i.e., the M-current, or activation of non-specific cation conductances that underlie calcium-dependent afterdepolarizations (ADPs. However, 2A-dependent excitation of cortical neurons has not been extensively studied, and no consensus exists regarding the underlying ionic effector(s involved. In layer 5 of the mouse medial prefrontal cortex, we tested potential mechanisms of serotonergic excitation in commissural/callosal (COM projection neurons, a subpopulation of pyramidal neurons that exhibits 2A-dependent excitation in response to 5-HT. In baseline conditions, 5-HT enhanced the rate of action potential generation in COM neurons experiencing suprathreshold somatic current injection. This serotonergic excitation was occluded by activation of muscarinic acetylcholine (ACh receptors, confirming that 5-HT acts via the same Gq-signaling cascades engaged by ACh. Like ACh, 5-HT promoted the generation of calcium-dependent ADPs following spike trains. However, calcium was not necessary for serotonergic excitation, as responses to 5-HT were enhanced (by >100%, rather than reduced, by chelation of intracellular calcium with 10 mM BAPTA. This suggests intracellular calcium negatively regulates additional ionic conductances gated by 2A receptors. Removal of extracellular calcium had no effect when intracellular calcium signaling was intact, but suppressed 5-HT response amplitudes, by about 50%, when BAPTA was included in patch pipettes. This suggests that 2A excitation involves activation of a non-specific cation conductance that is both calcium-sensitive and calcium-permeable. M-current suppression was found to be a third
Gittins, Rebecca; Harrison, Paul J
There are an increasing number of quantitative morphometric studies of the human cerebral cortex, especially as part of comparative investigations of major psychiatric disorders. In this context, the present study had two aims. First, to provide quantitative data regarding key neuronal morphometric parameters in the anterior cingulate cortex. Second, to compare the results of conventional Nissl staining with those observed after immunostaining with NeuN, an antibody becoming widely used as a selective neuronal marker. We stained adjacent sections of area 24b from 16 adult brains with cresyl violet or NeuN. We measured the density of pyramidal and non-pyramidal neurons, and the size and shape of pyramidal neurons, in laminae II, III, Va, Vb and VI, using two-dimensional counting methods. Strong correlations between the two modes of staining were seen for all variables. However, NeuN gave slightly higher estimates of neuronal density and size, and a more circular perikaryal shape. Brain pH was correlated with neuronal size, measured with both methods, and with neuronal shape. Age and post-mortem interval showed no correlations with any parameter. These data confirm the value of NeuN as a tool for quantitative neuronal morphometric studies in routinely processed human brain tissue. Absolute values are highly correlated between NeuN and cresyl violet stains, but cannot be interchanged. NeuN may be particularly useful when it is important to distinguish small neurons from glia, such as in cytoarchitectural studies of the cerebral cortex in depression and schizophrenia.
Cauda, Franco; Geminiani, Giuliano Carlo; Vercelli, Alessandro
von Economo's neurons (VENs) are large, spindle-shaped projection neurons in layer V of the frontoinsular (FI) cortex, and the anterior cingulate cortex. During human ontogenesis, the VENs can first be differentiated at late stages of gestation, and increase in number during the first eight postnatal months. VENs have been identified in humans, chimpanzee, bonobos, gorillas, orangutan and, more recently, in the macaque. Their distribution in great apes seems to correlate with human-like social cognitive abilities and self-awareness. VENs are also found in whales, in a number of different cetaceans, and in the elephant. This phylogenetic distribution may suggest a correlation among the VENs, brain size and the "social brain." VENs may be involved in the pathogenesis of specific neurological and psychiatric diseases, such as autism, callosal agenesis and schizophrenia. VENs are selectively affected in a behavioral variant of frontotemporal dementia in which empathy, social awareness and self-control are seriously compromised, thus associating VENs with the social brain. However, the presence of VENs has also been related to special functions such as mirror self-recognition. Areas containing VENs have been related to motor awareness or sense-of-knowing, discrimination between self and other, and between self and the external environment. Along this line, VENs have been related to the "global Workspace" architecture: in accordance the VENs have been correlated to emotional and interoceptive signals by providing fast connections (large axons = fast communication) between salience-related insular and cingulate and other widely separated brain areas. Nevertheless, the lack of a characterization of their physiology and anatomical connectivity allowed only to infer their functional role based on their location and on the functional magnetic resonance imaging data. The recent finding of VENs in the anterior insula of the macaque opens the way to new insights and experimental
Tsutsui-Kimura, Iku; Ohmura, Yu; Izumi, Takeshi; Matsushima, Toshiya; Amita, Hidetoshi; Yamaguchi, Taku; Yoshida, Takayuki; Yoshioka, Mitsuhiro
Poor impulse control is a debilitating condition observed in various psychiatric disorders and could be a risk factor for drug addiction, criminal involvement, and suicide. The rat infralimbic cortex (IL), located in the ventral portion of the medial prefrontal cortex, has been implicated in impulse control. To elucidate the neurophysiological basis of impulse control, we recorded single unit activity in the IL of a rat performing a 3-choiceserial reaction time task (3-CSRTT) and 2-choice task (2-CT), which are animal models for impulsivity. The inactivation of IL neuronal activity with an injection of muscimol (0.1 μg /side) disrupted impulse control in the 3-CSRTT. More than 60% (38/56) of isolated IL units were linked to impulse control, while approximately 30% of all units were linked to attentional function in the 3-CSRTT. To avoid confounding motor-related units with the impulse control-related units, we further conducted the 2-CT in which the animals' motor activities were restricted during recording window. More than 30% (14/44) of recorded IL units were linked to impulse control in the 2-CT. Several types of impulse control-related units were identified. Only 16% of all units were compatible with the results of the muscimol experiment, which showed a transient decline in the firing rate immediately before the release of behavioral inhibition. This is the first study to elucidate the neurophysiological basis of impulse control in the IL and to propose that IL neurons control impulsive actions in a more complex manner than previously considered. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Full Text Available Von Economo’s neurons (VENs are large, spindle-shaped projection neurons in layer V of the frontoinsular (FI cortex, and the anterior cingulate cortex. During human ontogenesis, the VENs can first be differentiated at late stages of gestation, and increase in number during the first eight postnatal months.VENs have been identified in humans, chimpanzee, bonobos, gorillas, orangutan and, more recently, in the macaque. Their distribution in great apes seems to correlate with human-like social cognitive abilities and self-awareness. VENs are also found in whales, in a number of different cetaceans, and in the elephant. This phylogenetic distribution may suggest a correlation among the VENs, brain size and the social brain. VENs may be involved in the pathogenesis of specific neurological and psychiatric diseases, such as autism, callosal agenesis and schizophrenia. VENs are selectively affected in a behavioral variant of frontotemporal dementia in which empathy, social awareness and self-control are seriously compromised, thus associating VENs with the social brain.However, the presence of VENs has also been related to special functions such as mirror self-recognition. Areas containing VENs have been related to motor awareness or sense-of-knowing, discrimination between self and other, and between self and the external environment. Along this line, VENs have been related to the global Workspace architecture: in accordance the VENs have been correlated to emotional and interoceptive signals by providing fast connections (large axons = fast communication between salience-related insular and cingulate and other widely separated brain areas.Nevertheless, the lack of a characterization of their physiology and anatomical connectivity allowed only to infer their functional role based on their location and on the fMRI data. The recent finding of VENs in the anterior insula of the macaque opens the way to new insights and experimental investigatio
Saud, K; Cánovas, J; Lopez, C I; Berndt, F A; López, E; Maass, J C; Barriga, A; Kukuljan, M
The development of the cerebral cortex requires the coordination of multiple processes ranging from the proliferation of progenitors to the migration and establishment of connectivity of the newborn neurons. Epigenetic regulation carried out by the COREST/LSD1 complex has been identified as a mechanism that regulates the development of pyramidal neurons of the cerebral cortex. We now identify the association of the multifunctional RNA-binding protein SFPQ to LSD1 during the development of the cerebral cortex. In vivo reduction of SFPQ dosage by in utero electroporation of a shRNA results in impaired radial migration of newborn pyramidal neurons, in a similar way to that observed when COREST or LSD1 expressions are decreased. Diminished SFPQ expression also associates to decreased proliferation of progenitor cells, while it does not affect the acquisition of neuronal fate. These results are compatible with the idea that SFPQ, plays an important role regulating proliferation and migration during the development of the cerebral cortex. Copyright © 2016 ISDN. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Merzhanova, G Kh; Dolbakian, E E; Khokhlova, V N
Six cats were subjected to the procedure of appetitive instrumental conditioning (with light as a conditioned stimuls) by the method of the "active choice" of reinforcement quality. Short-delay conditioned bar-press responses were rewarded with bread-meat mixture, and the delayed responses were reinforced by meat. The animals differed in behavior strategy: four animals preferred the bar-pressing with a long delay (the so-called "self-control" group), and two cats preferred the bar-pressing with a short delay (the so-called "impulsive" group). Multiunit activity in the frontal cortex and hippocampus (CA3) was recorded via chronically implanted nichrome wire semimicroelectrodes. An interaction between the neighboring neurons in the frontal cortex and hippocampus (within local neural networks) and between the neurons of the frontal cortex and hippocampus (distributed neural networks in frontal-hippocampal and hippocampal-frontal directions) was evaluated by means of statistical crosscorrelation analysis of spike trains. Crosscorrelations between neuronal spike trains in the delay range of 0-100 ms were explored. It was shown that the number of crosscorrelations between the neuronal discharges both in the local and distributed networks was significantly higher in the "self-control" cats. It was suggested that the local and distributed neural networks of the frontal cortex and hippocampus are involved in the system of brain structures which determine the behavioral strategy of animals in the "self-control" group.
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.
Dmitry V. Amakhin
Full Text Available In epilepsy, the balance of excitation and inhibition underlying the basis of neural network activity shifts, resulting in neuronal network hyperexcitability and recurrent seizure-associated discharges. Mechanisms involved in ictal and interictal events are not fully understood, in particular, because of controversial data regarding the dynamics of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic conductances. In the present study, we estimated AMPAR-, NMDAR-, and GABAAR-mediated conductances during two distinct types of interictal discharge (IID in pyramidal neurons of rat entorhinal cortex in cortico-hippocampal slices. Repetitively emerging seizure-like events and IIDs were recorded in high extracellular potassium, 4-aminopyridine, and reduced magnesium-containing solution. An original procedure for estimating synaptic conductance during IIDs was based on the differences among the current-voltage characteristics of the synaptic components. The synaptic conductance dynamics obtained revealed that the first type of IID is determined by activity of GABAAR channels with depolarized reversal potential. The second type of IID is determined by the interplay between excitation and inhibition, with prominent early AMPAR and prolonged depolarized GABAAR and NMDAR-mediated components. The study then validated the contribution of these components to IIDs by intracellular pharmacological isolation. These data provide new insights into the mechanisms of seizures generation, development, and cessation.
Rueckemann, Jon W; DiMauro, Audrey J; Rangel, Lara M; Han, Xue; Boyden, Edward S; Eichenbaum, Howard
The mechanisms that enable the hippocampal network to express the appropriate spatial representation for a particular circumstance are not well understood. Previous studies suggest that the medial entorhinal cortex (MEC) may have a role in reproducibly selecting the hippocampal representation of an environment. To examine how ongoing MEC activity is continually integrated by the hippocampus, we performed transient unilateral optogenetic inactivations of the MEC while simultaneously recording place cell activity in CA1. Inactivation of the MEC caused a partial remapping in the CA1 population without diminishing the degree of spatial tuning across the active cell assembly. These changes remained stable irrespective of intermittent disruption of MEC input, indicating that while MEC input is integrated over long time scales to bias the active population, there are mechanisms for stabilizing the population of active neurons independent of the MEC. We find that MEC inputs to the hippocampus shape its ongoing activity by biasing the participation of the neurons in the active network, thereby influencing how the hippocampus selectively represents information. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Cai, X; Shimansky, Y; He, Jiping
A brain-computer interface (BCI) system such as a cortically controlled robotic arm must have a capacity of adjusting its function to a specific environmental condition. We studied this capacity in non-human primates based on chronic multi-electrode recording from the primary motor cortex of a monkey during the animal's performance of a center-out 3D reaching task and adaptation to external force perturbations. The main condition-related feature of motor cortical activity observed before the onset of force perturbation was a phasic raise of activity immediately before the perturbation onset. This feature was observed during a series of perturbation trials, but were absent under no perturbations. After adaptation has been completed, it usually was taking the subject only one trial to recognize a change in the condition to switch the neuronal activity accordingly. These condition-dependent features of neuronal activity can be used by a BCI for recognizing a change in the environmental condition and making corresponding adjustments, which requires that the BCI-based control system possess such advanced properties of the neural motor control system as capacity to learn and adapt.
Full Text Available The adult cerebral cortex lacks the capacity to replace degenerated neurons following traumatic injury. Conversion of nonneuronal cells into induced neurons has been proposed as an innovative strategy toward brain repair. Here, we show that retrovirus-mediated expression of the transcription factors Sox2 and Ascl1, but strikingly also Sox2 alone, can induce the conversion of genetically fate-mapped NG2 glia into induced doublecortin (DCX+ neurons in the adult mouse cerebral cortex following stab wound injury in vivo. In contrast, lentiviral expression of Sox2 in the unlesioned cortex failed to convert oligodendroglial and astroglial cells into DCX+ cells. Neurons induced following injury mature morphologically and some acquire NeuN while losing DCX. Patch-clamp recording of slices containing Sox2- and/or Ascl1-transduced cells revealed that a substantial fraction of these cells receive synaptic inputs from neurons neighboring the injury site. Thus, NG2 glia represent a potential target for reprogramming strategies toward cortical repair.
Hama, Noriyuki; Kawai, Minako; Ito, Shin-Ichi; Hirota, Akihiko
Multisite optical recording has revealed that the neural excitation wave induced by a sensory stimulation begins at a focus and propagates on the cortex. This wave is considered to be important for computation in the sensory cortex, particularly the integration of sensory information; however, the nature of this wave remains largely unknown. In the present study, we examined the interaction between two waves in the rat sensory cortex induced by hindlimb and forelimb stimuli with different inter-stimulus intervals. We classified the resultant patterns as follows: 1) the collision of two waves; 2) the hindlimb response being evoked while the forelimb-induced wave is passing the hindlimb focus; and 3) the hindlimb response being evoked after the forelimb-induced wave has passed the hindlimb focus. In pattern 1, the two waves fused into a single wave, but the propagation pattern differed from that predicted by the superimposition of two solely induced propagation courses. In pattern 2, the state of the interaction between the two waves varied depending on the phase of optical signals constituting the forelimb-induced wave around the hindlimb focus. Although no hindlimb-induced wave was observed in the rising phase, the propagating velocity of the forelimb-induced wave increased. At the peak, neither the hindlimb-induced response nor a modulatory effect on the forelimb-induced wave was detected. In pattern 3, the hindlimb-induced wave showed a reduced amplitude and spatial extent. These results indicate that the state of the interaction between waves was strongly influenced by the relative timing of sensory inputs.
Jessen, Sanne Barsballe; Brazhe, Alexey; Lind, Barbara Lykke
Neural activity regulates local increases in cerebral blood flow (ΔCBF) and the cortical metabolic rate of oxygen (ΔCMRO2) that constitutes the basis of BOLD functional neuroimaging signals. Glutamate signaling plays a key role in brain vascular and metabolic control; however, the modulatory effect...... of GABA is incompletely understood. Here we performed in vivo studies in mice to investigate how THIP (which tonically activates extrasynaptic GABAARs) and Zolpidem (a positive allosteric modulator of synaptic GABAARs) impact stimulation-induced ΔCBF, ΔCMRO2, local field potentials (LFPs), and fluorescent...... cytosolic Ca2+ transients in neurons and astrocytes. Low concentrations of THIP increased ΔCBF and ΔCMRO2 at low stimulation frequencies. These responses were coupled to increased synaptic activity as indicated by LFP responses, and to Ca2+ activities in neurons and astrocytes. Intermediate and high...
Roelf J. Cruz-Rizzolo
Full Text Available Retrospective studies in human populations indicate that protein deprivation during pregnancy and early life (early protein malnutrition, EPM is associated with cognitive impairments, learning disabilities and may represent a risk factor for the late onset of some psychiatric disorders, fundamentally schizophrenia, a condition where the prefrontal cortex plays an important role. The purpose of this study was to analyze whether EPM affects structural aspects of the rat medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC, such as cortical volume, neuronal density and neuronal soma size, which seem altered in patients with schizophrenia. For this, a rat model of EPM (5% casein from conception to postnatal day 60 was adopted and the rat mPFC volume, total number of neurons and average neuronal volume were evaluated on postnatal day 60 (post-pubertal animals by histo- and immunohistochemical techniques using unbiased stereological analysis. EPM did not alter the number of NeuN+ neurons in the rat mPFC. However, a very significant decrease in mPFC volume and average neuronal size was observed in malnourished rats. Although the present study does not establish causal relationships between malnutrition and schizophrenia, our results may indicate a similar structural phenomenon in these two situations.
Nagy, Bernadett; Szabó, István; Csetényi, Bettina; Hormay, Edina; Papp, Szilárd; Keresztes, Dóra; Karádi, Zoltán
The mediodorsal prefrontal cortex (mdPFC), as part of the forebrain glucose-monitoring (GM) system, plays important role in several regulatory processes to control the internal state of the organism and to initiate behavioral outputs accordingly. Little is known, however, about the neurochemical sensitivity of neurons located in this area. Substantial evidence indicates that the locus ceruleus - noradrenaline (NA) projection system and the nucleus basalis magnocellularis - cholinergic projection system regulate behavioral state and state dependent processing of sensory information, various cognitive functions already associated with the mdPFC. The main goal of the present study was to examine noradrenergic and cholinergic responsiveness of glucose-monitoring and glucose-insensitive (GIS) neurons in the mediodorsal prefrontal cortex. One fifth of the neurons tested changed in firing rate to microelectrophoretically applied NA. Responsiveness of the GM cells to this catecholamine proved to be significantly higher than that of the GIS units. Microiontophoretic application of acetylcholine (Ach) resulted in activity changes (predominantly facilitation) of more than 40% of the mdPFC neurons. Proportion of Ach sensitive units among the GM and the GIS neurons was found to be similar. The glucose-monitoring neurons of the mdPFC and their distinct NA and remarkable Ach sensitivity are suggested to be of particular significance in prefrontal control of adaptive behaviors. © 2013 Published by Elsevier B.V.
Akselrod, Michel; Martuzzi, Roberto; Serino, Andrea; van der Zwaag, Wietske; Gassert, Roger; Blanke, Olaf
Primary somatosensory cortex (S1) processes somatosensory information and is composed of multiple subregions. In particular, tactile information from the skin is encoded in three subregions, namely Brodmann areas (BAs) 3b, 1 and 2, with each area representing a complete map of the contralateral body. Although, much is known about the somatotopic organization of the hand in human S1, less research has been carried out regarding the somatotopic maps of the foot and leg in S1. Moreover, a latero-medial S1 organization along the superior part of the postcentral gyrus has been reported when moving from hip to toes, yet to date there is no study investigating leg/foot maps within the different subregions of S1. Using ultra-high field MRI (7T), we mapped six cortical representations of the lower limb (hip to toes) at the single subject level and performed this analysis separately for BAs 3b, 1 and 2. Analyzing the BOLD responses associated with tactile stimulations of the mapped foot and leg regions on each side, we quantified the extent and the strength of activation to determine somatotopic organization. In addition, we investigated whether each mapped representation also responded to the stimulation of other body parts (i.e. response selectivity) and conducted dissimilarity analysis relating these anatomical and functional properties of S1 to the physical structure of the lower limbs. Our data reveal somatotopy for the leg, but not for the foot in all investigated BAs, with large inter-subject variability. We found only minor differences between the properties of the three investigated BAs, suggesting that S1 maps for the lower limbs differ from those described for the hand. We also describe greater extent/strength of S1 activation for the big toe representation (compared to the other mapped representations) within all BAs, suggesting a possible homology between the first digit of upper and lower extremity in humans, and report different patterns of selectivity in the
Brosch, Michael; Selezneva, Elena; Scheich, Henning
This study aimed at a deeper understanding of which cognitive and motivational aspects of tasks affect auditory cortical activity. To this end we trained two macaque monkeys to perform two different tasks on the same audiovisual stimulus and to do this with two different sizes of water rewards. The monkeys had to touch a bar after a tone had been turned on together with an LED, and to hold the bar until either the tone (auditory task) or the LED (visual task) was turned off. In 399 multiunits recorded from core fields of auditory cortex we confirmed that during task engagement neurons responded to auditory and non-auditory stimuli that were task-relevant, such as light and water. We also confirmed that firing rates slowly increased or decreased for several seconds during various phases of the tasks. Responses to non-auditory stimuli and slow firing changes were observed during both the auditory and the visual task, with some differences between them. There was also a weak task-dependent modulation of the responses to auditory stimuli. In contrast to these cognitive aspects, motivational aspects of the tasks were not reflected in the firing, except during delivery of the water reward. In conclusion, the present study supports our previous proposal that there are two response types in the auditory cortex that represent the timing and the type of auditory and non-auditory elements of a auditory tasks as well the association between elements. © 2015 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
George L Chadderdon
Full Text Available Sensorimotor control has traditionally been considered from a control theory perspective, without relation to neurobiology. In contrast, here we utilized a spiking-neuron model of motor cortex and trained it to perform a simple movement task, which consisted of rotating a single-joint "forearm" to a target. Learning was based on a reinforcement mechanism analogous to that of the dopamine system. This provided a global reward or punishment signal in response to decreasing or increasing distance from hand to target, respectively. Output was partially driven by Poisson motor babbling, creating stochastic movements that could then be shaped by learning. The virtual forearm consisted of a single segment rotated around an elbow joint, controlled by flexor and extensor muscles. The model consisted of 144 excitatory and 64 inhibitory event-based neurons, each with AMPA, NMDA, and GABA synapses. Proprioceptive cell input to this model encoded the 2 muscle lengths. Plasticity was only enabled in feedforward connections between input and output excitatory units, using spike-timing-dependent eligibility traces for synaptic credit or blame assignment. Learning resulted from a global 3-valued signal: reward (+1, no learning (0, or punishment (-1, corresponding to phasic increases, lack of change, or phasic decreases of dopaminergic cell firing, respectively. Successful learning only occurred when both reward and punishment were enabled. In this case, 5 target angles were learned successfully within 180 s of simulation time, with a median error of 8 degrees. Motor babbling allowed exploratory learning, but decreased the stability of the learned behavior, since the hand continued moving after reaching the target. Our model demonstrated that a global reinforcement signal, coupled with eligibility traces for synaptic plasticity, can train a spiking sensorimotor network to perform goal-directed motor behavior.
Chadderdon, George L; Neymotin, Samuel A; Kerr, Cliff C; Lytton, William W
Sensorimotor control has traditionally been considered from a control theory perspective, without relation to neurobiology. In contrast, here we utilized a spiking-neuron model of motor cortex and trained it to perform a simple movement task, which consisted of rotating a single-joint "forearm" to a target. Learning was based on a reinforcement mechanism analogous to that of the dopamine system. This provided a global reward or punishment signal in response to decreasing or increasing distance from hand to target, respectively. Output was partially driven by Poisson motor babbling, creating stochastic movements that could then be shaped by learning. The virtual forearm consisted of a single segment rotated around an elbow joint, controlled by flexor and extensor muscles. The model consisted of 144 excitatory and 64 inhibitory event-based neurons, each with AMPA, NMDA, and GABA synapses. Proprioceptive cell input to this model encoded the 2 muscle lengths. Plasticity was only enabled in feedforward connections between input and output excitatory units, using spike-timing-dependent eligibility traces for synaptic credit or blame assignment. Learning resulted from a global 3-valued signal: reward (+1), no learning (0), or punishment (-1), corresponding to phasic increases, lack of change, or phasic decreases of dopaminergic cell firing, respectively. Successful learning only occurred when both reward and punishment were enabled. In this case, 5 target angles were learned successfully within 180 s of simulation time, with a median error of 8 degrees. Motor babbling allowed exploratory learning, but decreased the stability of the learned behavior, since the hand continued moving after reaching the target. Our model demonstrated that a global reinforcement signal, coupled with eligibility traces for synaptic plasticity, can train a spiking sensorimotor network to perform goal-directed motor behavior.
de Vivo, Luisa; Nelson, Aaron B; Bellesi, Michele; Noguti, Juliana; Tononi, Giulio; Cirelli, Chiara
The adolescent brain may be uniquely affected by acute sleep deprivation (ASD) and chronic sleep restriction (CSR), but direct evidence is lacking. We used electron microscopy to examine how ASD and CSR affect pyramidal neurons in the frontal cortex of adolescent mice, focusing on mitochondria, endosomes, and lysosomes that together perform most basic cellular functions, from nutrient intake to prevention of cellular stress. Adolescent (1-mo-old) mice slept (S) or were sleep deprived (ASD, with novel objects and running wheels) during the first 6-8 h of the light period, chronically sleep restricted (CSR) for > 4 days (using novel objects, running wheels, social interaction, forced locomotion, caffeinated water), or allowed to recover sleep (RS) for ∼32 h after CSR. Ultrastructural analysis of 350 pyramidal neurons was performed (S = 82; ASD = 86; CSR = 103; RS = 79; 4 to 5 mice/group). Several ultrastructural parameters differed in S versus ASD, S versus CSR, CSR versus RS, and S versus RS, although the different methods used to enforce wake may have contributed to some of the differences between short and long sleep loss. Differences included larger cytoplasmic area occupied by mitochondria in CSR versus S, and higher number of secondary lysosomes in CSR versus S and RS. We also found that sleep loss may unmask interindividual differences not obvious during baseline sleep. Moreover, using a combination of 11 ultrastructural parameters, we could predict in up to 80% of cases whether sleep or wake occurred at the single cell level. Ultrastructural analysis may be a powerful tool to identify which cellular organelles, and thus which cellular functions, are most affected by sleep and sleep loss. © 2016 Associated Professional Sleep Societies, LLC.
Cavanagh, M.E.; Parnavelas, J.G.
The postnatal development of neuropeptide Y (NPY)-immunoreactive neurons, previously labeled with [3H]thymidine on embryonic days E14-E21, has been studied in the rat occipital cortex. Immunohistochemistry combined with autoradiography showed evidence of a modified inside-out pattern of maturation. NPY-neurons are generated between E14 and E20 and are found in layers II-VI of the cortex and the subcortical white matter. NPY neurons from all these birthdates are overproduced at first, although cells generated at E16 produce the greatest excess, followed by E15 and E17. Some of these transient neurons are found in the wrong layer for their birthdates, and their elimination produces a more correct alignment at maturity. However, most of the NPY neurons that survive are generated at E17, and these cells are found throughout layers II-VI with a preponderance in layer VI. This evidence is strongly suggestive of cell death rather than merely cessation of production of NPY
Szabó, István; Hormay, Edina; Csetényi, Bettina; Nagy, Bernadett; Karádi, Zoltán
The medial orbitofrontal cortex is involved in the regulation of feeding and metabolism. Little is known, however, about the role of local glucose-monitoring neurons in these processes, and our knowledge is also poor about characteristics of these cells. The functional significance of these chemosensory neurons was to be elucidated. Electrophysiology, by the multibarreled microelectrophoretic technique, and metabolic investigations, after streptozotocin induced selective destruction of the chemosensory neurons, were employed. Fifteen percent of the neurons responded to glucose, and these chemosensory cells displayed differential neurotransmitter and taste sensitivities. In acute glucose tolerance test, at the 30th and 60th minutes, blood glucose level in the streptozotocin-treated rats was significantly higher than that in the controls. The plasma triglyceride concentrations were also higher in the streptozotocin-treated group. Glucose-monitoring neurons of the medial orbitofrontal cortex integrate internal and external environmental signals, and monitor metabolic processes, thus, are indispensable to maintain the healthy homeostasis. Orv Hetil. 2017; 158(18): 692-700.
Wittenberg, Marc André; Baumgarten, Thomas J; Schnitzler, Alfons; Lange, Joachim
Neuronal oscillations are a ubiquitous phenomenon in the human nervous system. Alpha-band oscillations (8-12 Hz) have been shown to correlate negatively with attention and performance, whereas gamma-band oscillations (40-150 Hz) correlate positively. Here, we studied the relation between prestimulus alpha-band power and poststimulus gamma-band power in a suprathreshold tactile discrimination task. Participants received two electrical stimuli to their left index finger with different SOAs (0 msec, 100 msec, intermediate SOA, intermediate SOA ± 10 msec). The intermediate SOA was individually determined so that stimulation was bistable, and participants perceived one stimulus in half of the trials and two stimuli in the other half. We measured neuronal activity with magnetoencephalography (MEG). In trials with intermediate SOAs, behavioral performance correlated inversely with prestimulus alpha-band power but did not correlate with poststimulus gamma-band power. Poststimulus gamma-band power was high in trials with low and high prestimulus alpha-band power and low for intermediate prestimulus alpha-band power (i.e., U-shaped). We suggest that prestimulus alpha activity modulates poststimulus gamma activity and subsequent perception: (1) low prestimulus alpha-band power leads to high poststimulus gamma-band power, biasing perception such that two stimuli were perceived; (2) intermediate prestimulus alpha-band power leads to low gamma-band power (interpreted as inefficient stimulus processing), consequently, perception was not biased in either direction; and (3) high prestimulus alpha-band power leads to high poststimulus gamma-band power, biasing perception such that only one stimulus was perceived.
Kuramoto, Eriko; Pan, Shixiu; Furuta, Takahiro; Tanaka, Yasuhiro R; Iwai, Haruki; Yamanaka, Atsushi; Ohno, Sachi; Kaneko, Takeshi; Goto, Tetsuya; Hioki, Hiroyuki
The prefrontal cortex has an important role in a variety of cognitive and executive processes, and is generally defined by its reciprocal connections with the mediodorsal thalamic nucleus (MD). The rat MD is mainly subdivided into three segments, the medial (MDm), central (MDc), and lateral (MDl) divisions, on the basis of the cytoarchitecture and chemoarchitecture. The MD segments are known to topographically project to multiple prefrontal areas at the population level: the MDm mainly to the prelimbic, infralimbic, and agranular insular areas; the MDc to the orbital and agranular insular areas; and the MDl to the prelimbic and anterior cingulate areas. However, it is unknown whether individual MD neurons project to single or multiple prefrontal cortical areas. In the present study, we visualized individual MD neurons with Sindbis virus vectors, and reconstructed whole structures of MD neurons. While the main cortical projection targets of MDm, MDc, and MDl neurons were generally consistent with those of previous results, it was found that individual MD neurons sent their axon fibers to multiple prefrontal areas, and displayed various projection patterns in the target areas. Furthermore, the axons of single MD neurons were not homogeneously spread, but were rather distributed to form patchy axon arbors approximately 1 mm in diameter. The multiple-area projections and patchy axon arbors of single MD neurons might be able to coactivate cortical neuron groups in distant prefrontal areas simultaneously. Furthermore, considerable heterogeneity of the projection patterns is likely, to recruit the different sets of cortical neurons, and thus contributes to a variety of prefrontal functions. J. Comp. Neurol. 525:166-185, 2017. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Full Text Available Taste is a primary reinforcer. Olfactory-taste and visual-taste association learning takes place in the primate including human orbitofrontal cortex to build representations of flavour. Rapid reversal of this learning can occur using a rule-based learning system that can be reset when an expected taste or flavour reward is not obtained, that is by negative reward prediction error, to which a population of neurons in the orbitofrontal cortex responds. The representation in the orbitofrontal cortex but not the primary taste or olfactory cortex is of the reward value of the visual / olfactory / taste / input as shown by devaluation experiments in which food is fed to satiety, and by correlations with the activations with subjective pleasantness ratings in humans. Sensory-specific satiety for taste, olfactory, visual, and oral somatosensory inputs produced by feeding a particular food to satiety are implemented it is proposed by medium-term synaptic adaptation in the orbitofrontal cortex. Cognitive factors, including word-level descriptions, modulate the representation of the reward value of food in the orbitofrontal cortex, and this effect is learned it is proposed by associative modification of top-down synapses onto neurons activated by bottom-up taste and olfactory inputs when both are active in the orbitofrontal cortex. A similar associative synaptic learning process is proposed to be part of the mechanism for the top-down attentional control to the reward value vs the sensory properties such as intensity of taste and olfactory inputs in the orbitofrontal cortex, as part of a biased activation theory of selective attention.
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.
Hervig, Mona El-Sayed; Jensen, Nadja Cecilie Hvid; Rasmussen, Nadja Bredo; Rydbirk, Rasmus; Olesen, Mikkel Vestergaard; Hay-Schmidt, Anders; Pakkenberg, Bente; Aznar, Susana
The medial prefrontal cortex (PFC) plays a major role in executive function by exerting a top-down control onto subcortical areas. Novelty-induced frontal cortex activation is 5-HT 2A receptor (5-HT 2A R) dependent. Here, we further investigated how blockade of 5-HT 2A Rs in mice exposed to a novel open-field arena affects medial PFC activation and basolateral amygdala (BLA) reactivity. We used c-Fos immunoreactivity (IR) as a marker of neuronal activation and stereological quantification for obtaining the total number of c-Fos-IR neurons as a measure of regional activation. We further examined the impact of 5-HT 2A R blockade on the striatal-projecting BLA neurons. Systemic administration of ketanserin (0.5mg/kg) prior to novel open-field exposure resulted in reduced total numbers of c-Fos-IR cells in dorsomedial PFC areas and the BLA. Moreover, there was a positive correlation between the relative time spent in the centre of the open-field and BLA c-Fos-IR in the ketanserin-treated animals. Unilateral medial PFC lesions blocked this effect, ascertaining an involvement of this frontal cortex area. On the other hand, medial PFC lesioning exacerbated the more anxiogenic-like behaviour of the ketanserin-treated animals, upholding its involvement in modulating averseness. Ketanserin did not affect the number of activated striatal-projecting BLA neurons (measured by number of Cholera Toxin b (CTb) retrograde labelled neurons also being c-Fos-IR) following CTb injection in the ventral striatum. These results support a role of 5-HT 2A R activation in modulating mPFC and BLA activation during exposure to a novel environment, which may be interrelated. Conversely, 5-HT 2A R blockade does not seem to affect the amygdala-striatal projection. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Kolb, Bryan; Li, Yilin; Robinson, Terry; Parker, Linda A
Psychoactive drugs have the ability to alter the morphology of neuronal dendrites and spines and to influence later experience-dependent structural plasticity. If rats are given repeated injections of psychomotor stimulants (amphetamine, cocaine, nicotine) prior to being placed in complex environments, the drug experience interferes with the ability of the environment to increase dendritic arborization and spine density. Repeated exposure to Delta 9-Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) changes the morphology of dendrites in medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) and nucleus accumbens (NAcc). To determine if drugs other than psychomotor stimulants will also interfere with later experience-dependent structural plasticity we gave Long-Evans rats THC (0.5 mg/kg) or saline for 11 days before placing them in complex environments or standard laboratory caging for 90 days. Brains were subsequently processed for Golgi-Cox staining and analysis of dendritic morphology and spine density mPFC, orbital frontal cortex (OFC), and NAcc. THC altered both dendritic arborization and spine density in all three regions, and, like psychomotor stimulants, THC influenced the effect of later experience in complex environments to shape the structure of neurons in these three regions. We conclude that THC may therefore contribute to persistent behavioral and cognitive deficits associated with prolonged use of the drug. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Corticotrigeminal Projections from the Insular Cortex to the Trigeminal Caudal Subnucleus Regulate Orofacial Pain after Nerve Injury via Extracellular Signal-Regulated Kinase Activation in Insular Cortex Neurons.
Wang, Jian; Li, Zhi-Hua; Feng, Ban; Zhang, Ting; Zhang, Han; Li, Hui; Chen, Tao; Cui, Jing; Zang, Wei-Dong; Li, Yun-Qing
Cortical neuroplasticity alterations are implicated in the pathophysiology of chronic orofacial pain. However, the relationship between critical cortex excitability and orofacial pain maintenance has not been fully elucidated. We recently demonstrated a top-down corticospinal descending pain modulation pathway from the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) to the spinal dorsal horn that could directly regulate nociceptive transmission. Thus, we aimed to investigate possible corticotrigeminal connections that directly influence orofacial nociception in rats. Infraorbital nerve chronic constriction injury (IoN-CCI) induced significant orofacial nociceptive behaviors as well as pain-related negative emotions such as anxiety/depression in rats. By combining retrograde and anterograde tract tracing, we found powerful evidence that the trigeminal caudal subnucleus (Vc), especially the superficial laminae (I/II), received direct descending projections from granular and dysgranular parts of the insular cortex (IC). Extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK), an important signaling molecule involved in neuroplasticity, was significantly activated in the IC following IoN-CCI. Moreover, in IC slices from IoN-CCI rats, U0126, an inhibitor of ERK activation, decreased both the amplitude and the frequency of spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs) and reduced the paired-pulse ratio (PPR) of Vc-projecting neurons. Additionally, U0126 also reduced the number of action potentials in the Vc-projecting neurons. Finally, intra-IC infusion of U0126 obviously decreased Fos expression in the Vc, accompanied by the alleviation of both nociceptive behavior and negative emotions. Thus, the corticotrigeminal descending pathway from the IC to the Vc could directly regulate orofacial pain, and ERK deactivation in the IC could effectively alleviate neuropathic pain as well as pain-related negative emotions in IoN-CCI rats, probably through this top-down pathway. These findings may help
Zemmar, Ajmal; Chen, Chia-Chien; Weinmann, Oliver; Kast, Brigitt; Vajda, Flora; Bozeman, James; Isaad, Noel; Zuo, Yi; Schwab, Martin E
Nogo-A has been well described as a myelin-associated inhibitor of neurite outgrowth and functional neuroregeneration after central nervous system (CNS) injury. Recently, a new role of Nogo-A has been identified as a negative regulator of synaptic plasticity in the uninjured adult CNS. Nogo-A is present in neurons and oligodendrocytes. However, it is yet unclear which of these two pools regulate synaptic plasticity. To address this question we used newly generated mouse lines in which Nogo-A is specifically knocked out in (1) oligodendrocytes (oligoNogo-A KO) or (2) neurons (neuroNogo-A KO). We show that both oligodendrocyte- and neuron-specific Nogo-A KO mice have enhanced dendritic branching and spine densities in layer 2/3 cortical pyramidal neurons. These effects are compartmentalized: neuronal Nogo-A affects proximal dendrites whereas oligodendrocytic Nogo-A affects distal regions. Finally, we used two-photon laser scanning microscopy to measure the spine turnover rate of adult mouse motor cortex layer 5 cells and find that both Nogo-A KO mouse lines show enhanced spine remodeling after 4 days. Our results suggest relevant control functions of glial as well as neuronal Nogo-A for synaptic plasticity and open new possibilities for more selective and targeted plasticity enhancing strategies.
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.
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.
Mowery, Todd M.; Harrold, Jon B.; Alloway, Kevin D.
The dorsolateral striatum (DLS) receives extensive projections from primary somatosensory cortex (SI), but very few studies have used somesthetic stimulation to characterize the sensory coding properties of DLS neurons. In this study, we used computer-controlled whisker deflections to characterize the extracellular responses of DLS neurons in rats lightly anesthetized with isoflurane. When multiple whiskers were synchronously deflected by rapid back-and-forth movements, whisker-sensitive neur...
Full Text Available Background: During early prenatal stages of brain development, serotonin (5-HT-specific neurons migrate through somal translocation to form the raphe nuclei and subsequently begin to project to their target regions. The rostral cluster of cells, comprising the median and dorsal raphe (DR, innervates anterior regions of the brain, including the prefrontal cortex. Differential analysis of the mouse 5-HT system transcriptome identified enrichment of cell adhesion molecules in 5-HT neurons of the DR. One of these molecules, cadherin-13 (Cdh13 has been shown to play a role in cell migration, axon pathfinding, and synaptogenesis. This study aimed to investigate the contribution of Cdh13 to the development of the murine brain 5-HT system.Methods: For detection of Cdh13 and components of the 5-HT system at different embryonic developmental stages of the mouse brain, we employed immunofluorescence protocols and imaging techniques, including epifluorescence, confocal and structured illumination microscopy. The consequence of CDH13 loss-of-function mutations on brain 5-HT system development was explored in a mouse model of Cdh13 deficiency.Results: Our data show that in murine embryonic brain Cdh13 is strongly expressed on 5-HT specific neurons of the DR and in radial glial cells (RGCs, which are critically involved in regulation of neuronal migration. We observed that 5-HT neurons are intertwined with these RGCs, suggesting that these neurons undergo RGC-guided migration. Cdh13 is present at points of intersection between these two cell types. Compared to wildtype controls, Cdh13-deficient mice display increased cell densities in the DR at embryonic stages E13.5, E17.5, and adulthood, and higher serotonergic innervation of the prefrontal cortex at E17.5.Conclusion: Our findings provide evidence for a role of CDH13 in the development of the serotonergic system in early embryonic stages. Specifically, we indicate that Cdh13 deficiency affects the cell
Fried, Itzhak; Mukamel, Roy; Kreiman, Gabriel
Understanding how self-initiated behavior is encoded by neuronal circuits in the human brain remains elusive. We recorded the activity of 1019 neurons while twelve subjects performed self-initiated finger movement. We report progressive neuronal recruitment over ∼1500 ms before subjects report making the decision to move. We observed progressive increase or decrease in neuronal firing rate, particularly in the supplementary motor area (SMA), as the reported time of decision was approached. A ...
Full Text Available Protein malnutrition during early development has been correlated with cognitive and learning disabilities in children, but the neuronal deficits caused by long-term protein deficiency are not well understood. We exposed rats from gestation up to adulthood to a protein-deficient (PD diet, to emulate chronic protein malnutrition in humans. The offspring exhibited significantly impaired performance on the 'Gap-crossing' (GC task after reaching maturity, a behavior that has been shown to depend on normal functioning of the somatosensory cortex. The physiological state of the somatosensory cortex was examined to determine neuronal correlates of the deficits in behavior. Extracellular multi-unit recording from layer 4 (L4 neurons that receive direct thalamocortical inputs and layers 2/3 (L2/3 neurons that are dominated by intracortical connections in the whisker-barrel cortex of PD rats exhibited significantly low spontaneous activity and depressed responses to whisker stimulation. L4 neurons were more severely affected than L2/3 neurons. The response onset was significantly delayed in L4 cells. The peak response latency of L4 and L2/3 neurons was delayed significantly. In L2/3 and L4 of the barrel cortex there was a substantial increase in GAD65 (112% over controls and much smaller increase in NMDAR1 (12-20%, suggesting enhanced inhibition in the PD cortex. These results show that chronic protein deficiency negatively affects both thalamo-cortical and cortico-cortical transmission during somatosensory information processing. The findings support the interpretation that sustained protein deficiency interferes with features of cortical sensory processing that are likely to underlie the cognitive impairments reported in humans who have suffered from prolonged protein deficiency.
Routh, Brandy N; Rathour, Rahul K; Baumgardner, Michael E; Kalmbach, Brian E; Johnston, Daniel; Brager, Darrin H
Layer 2/3 neurons of the prefrontal cortex display higher gain of somatic excitability, responding with a higher number of action potentials for a given stimulus, in fmr1 -/y mice. In fmr1 -/y L2/3 neurons, action potentials are taller, faster and narrower. Outside-out patch clamp recordings revealed that the maximum Na + conductance density is higher in fmr1 -/y L2/3 neurons. Measurements of three biophysically distinct K + currents revealed a depolarizing shift in the activation of a rapidly inactivating (A-type) K + conductance. Realistic neuronal simulations of the biophysical observations recapitulated the elevated action potential and repetitive firing phenotype. Fragile X syndrome is the most common form of inherited mental impairment and autism. The prefrontal cortex is responsible for higher order cognitive processing, and prefrontal dysfunction is believed to underlie many of the cognitive and behavioural phenotypes associated with fragile X syndrome. We recently demonstrated that somatic and dendritic excitability of layer (L) 5 pyramidal neurons in the prefrontal cortex of the fmr1 -/y mouse is significantly altered due to changes in several voltage-gated ion channels. In addition to L5 pyramidal neurons, L2/3 pyramidal neurons play an important role in prefrontal circuitry, integrating inputs from both lower brain regions and the contralateral cortex. Using whole-cell current clamp recording, we found that L2/3 pyramidal neurons in prefrontal cortex of fmr1 -/y mouse fired more action potentials for a given stimulus compared with wild-type neurons. In addition, action potentials in fmr1 -/y neurons were significantly larger, faster and narrower. Voltage clamp of outside-out patches from L2/3 neurons revealed that the transient Na + current was significantly larger in fmr1 -/y neurons. Furthermore, the activation curve of somatic A-type K + current was depolarized. Realistic conductance-based simulations revealed that these biophysical changes in Na
Sun, Ninglei; Chi, Ning; Lauzon, Nicole; Bishop, Stephanie; Tan, Huibing; Laviolette, Steven R
The medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) comprises an important component in the neural circuitry underlying drug-related associative learning and memory processing. Neuronal activation within mPFC circuits is correlated with the recall of opiate-related drug-taking experiences in both humans and other animals. Using an unbiased associative place conditioning procedure, we recorded mPFC neuronal populations during the acquisition, recall, and extinction phases of morphine-related associative learning and memory. Our analyses revealed that mPFC neurons show increased activity both in terms of tonic and phasic activity patterns during the acquisition phase of opiate reward-related memory and demonstrate stimulus-locked associative activity changes in real time, during the recall of opiate reward memories. Interestingly, mPFC neuronal populations demonstrated divergent patterns of bursting activity during the acquisition versus recall phases of newly acquired opiate reward memory, versus the extinction of these memories, with strongly increased bursting during the recall of an extinction memory and no associative bursting during the recall of a newly acquired opiate reward memory. Our results demonstrate that neurons within the mPFC are involved in both the acquisition, recall, and extinction of opiate-related reward memories, showing unique patterns of tonic and phasic activity patterns during these separate components of the opiate-related reward learning and memory recall.
Virtanen, Mari A.; Lacoh, Claudia Marvine; Fiumelli, Hubert; Kosel, Markus; Tyagarajan, Shiva; de Roo, Mathias; Vutskits, Laszlo
Inhibitory control of pyramidal neurons plays a major role in governing the excitability in the brain. While spatial mapping of inhibitory inputs onto pyramidal neurons would provide important structural data on neuronal signaling, studying their distribution at the single cell level is difficult due to the lack of easily identifiable anatomical proxies. Here, we describe an approach where in utero electroporation of a plasmid encoding for fluorescently tagged gephyrin into the precursors of pyramidal cells along with ionotophoretic injection of Lucifer Yellow can reliably and specifically detect GABAergic synapses on the dendritic arbour of single pyramidal neurons. Using this technique and focusing on the basal dendritic arbour of layer 2/3 pyramidal cells of the medial prefrontal cortex, we demonstrate an intense development of GABAergic inputs onto these cells between postnatal days 10 and 20. While the spatial distribution of gephyrin clusters was not affected by the distance from the cell body at postnatal day 10, we found that distal dendritic segments appeared to have a higher gephyrin density at later developmental stages. We also show a transient increase around postnatal day 20 in the percentage of spines that are carrying a gephyrin cluster, indicative of innervation by a GABAergic terminal. Since the precise spatial arrangement of synaptic inputs is an important determinant of neuronal responses, we believe that the method described in this work may allow a better understanding of how inhibition settles together with excitation, and serve as basics for further modelling studies focusing on the geometry of dendritic inhibition during development.
Zeba, Martina; Jovanov-Milosević, Natasa; Petanjek, Zdravko
Large long projecting (cortico-cortical) layer IIIc pyramidal neurons were recently disclosed to be in the basis of cognitive processing in primates. Therefore, we quantitatively examined the basal dendritic morphology of these neurons by using rapid Golgi and Golgi Cox impregnation methods among three distinct Brodmann areas (BA) of an adult human frontal cortex: the primary motor BA4 and the associative magnopyramidal BA9 from left hemisphere and the Broca's speech BA45 from both hemispheres. There was no statistically significant difference in basal dendritic length or complexity, as dendritic spine number or their density between analyzed BA's. In addition, we analyzed each of these BA's immunocytochemically for distribution of SMI-32, a marker of largest long distance projecting neurons. Within layer IIIc, the highest density of SMI-32 immunopositive pyramidal neurons was observed in associative BA9, while in primary BA4 they were sparse. Taken together, these data suggest that an increase in the complexity of cortico-cortical network within human frontal areas of different functional order may be principally based on the increase in density of large, SMI-32 immunopositive layer IIIc neurons, rather than by further increase in complexity of their dendritic tree and synaptic network.
Virtanen, Mari A.
Inhibitory control of pyramidal neurons plays a major role in governing the excitability in the brain. While spatial mapping of inhibitory inputs onto pyramidal neurons would provide important structural data on neuronal signaling, studying their distribution at the single cell level is difficult due to the lack of easily identifiable anatomical proxies. Here, we describe an approach where in utero electroporation of a plasmid encoding for fluorescently tagged gephyrin into the precursors of pyramidal cells along with ionotophoretic injection of Lucifer Yellow can reliably and specifically detect GABAergic synapses on the dendritic arbour of single pyramidal neurons. Using this technique and focusing on the basal dendritic arbour of layer 2/3 pyramidal cells of the medial prefrontal cortex, we demonstrate an intense development of GABAergic inputs onto these cells between postnatal days 10 and 20. While the spatial distribution of gephyrin clusters was not affected by the distance from the cell body at postnatal day 10, we found that distal dendritic segments appeared to have a higher gephyrin density at later developmental stages. We also show a transient increase around postnatal day 20 in the percentage of spines that are carrying a gephyrin cluster, indicative of innervation by a GABAergic terminal. Since the precise spatial arrangement of synaptic inputs is an important determinant of neuronal responses, we believe that the method described in this work may allow a better understanding of how inhibition settles together with excitation, and serve as basics for further modelling studies focusing on the geometry of dendritic inhibition during development.
Full Text Available Perceptual learning has been used to probe the mechanisms of cortical plasticity in the adult brain. Feedback projections are ubiquitous in the cortex, but little is known about their role in cortical plasticity. Here we explore the hypothesis that learning visual orientation discrimination involves learning-dependent plasticity of top-down feedback inputs from higher cortical areas, serving a different function from plasticity due to changes in recurrent connections within a cortical area. In a Hodgkin-Huxley-based spiking neural network model of visual cortex, we show that modulation of feedback inputs to V1 from higher cortical areas results in shunting inhibition in V1 neurons, which changes the response properties of V1 neurons. The orientation selectivity of V1 neurons is enhanced without changing orientation preference, preserving the topographic organizations in V1. These results provide new insights to the mechanisms of plasticity in the adult brain, reconciling apparently inconsistent experiments and providing a new hypothesis for a functional role of the feedback connections.
Clément, Olivier; Hemming, Isabel Anne; Gladwyn-Ng, Ivan Enghian; Qu, Zhengdong; Li, Shan Shan; Piper, Michael; Heng, Julian Ik-Tsen
During the development of the mammalian cerebral cortex, newborn postmitotic projection neurons are born from local neural stem cells and must undergo radial migration so as to position themselves appropriately to form functional neural circuits. The zinc finger transcriptional repressor Rp58 (also known as Znf238 or Zbtb18) is critical for coordinating corticogenesis, but its underlying molecular mechanism remains to be better characterised. Here, we demonstrate that the co-expression of Rp58 and the cyclin dependent kinase inhibitor (CDKI) p27 kip1 is important for E14.5-born cortical neurons to coordinate cell cycle exit and initiate their radial migration. Notably, we find that the impaired radial positioning of Rp58-deficient cortical neurons within the embryonic (E17.5) mouse cortex, as well as their multipolar to bipolar transition from the intermediate zone to the cortical plate can be restored by forced expression of p27 kip1 in concert with suppression of Rnd2, a downstream target gene of Rp58. Furthermore, the restorative effects of p27 kip1 and Rnd2 abrogation are reminiscent of suppressing RhoA signalling in Rp58-deficient cells. Our findings demonstrate functional interplay between a transcriptional regulator and a CDKI to mediate neuroprogenitor cell cycle exit, as well as to promote radial migration through a molecular mechanism consistent with suppression of RhoA signalling.
Lobier, Muriel; Palva, J Matias; Palva, Satu
Visuospatial attention prioritizes processing of attended visual stimuli. It is characterized by lateralized alpha-band (8-14 Hz) amplitude suppression in visual cortex and increased neuronal activity in a network of frontal and parietal areas. It has remained unknown what mechanisms coordinate neuronal processing among frontoparietal network and visual cortices and implement the attention-related modulations of alpha-band amplitudes and behavior. We investigated whether large-scale network synchronization could be such a mechanism. We recorded human cortical activity with magnetoencephalography (MEG) during a visuospatial attention task. We then identified the frequencies and anatomical networks of inter-areal phase synchronization from source localized MEG data. We found that visuospatial attention is associated with robust and sustained long-range synchronization of cortical oscillations exclusively in the high-alpha (10-14 Hz) frequency band. This synchronization connected frontal, parietal and visual regions and was observed concurrently with amplitude suppression of low-alpha (6-9 Hz) band oscillations in visual cortex. Furthermore, stronger high-alpha phase synchronization was associated with decreased reaction times to attended stimuli and larger suppression of alpha-band amplitudes. These results thus show that high-alpha band phase synchronization is functionally significant and could coordinate the neuronal communication underlying the implementation of visuospatial attention. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Chen, Jeng-Rung; Lim, Seh Hong; Chung, Sin-Cun; Lee, Yee-Fun; Wang, Yueh-Jan; Tseng, Guo-Fang; Wang, Tsyr-Jiuan
Behavioral adaptations during motherhood are aimed at increasing reproductive success. Alterations of hormones during motherhood could trigger brain morphological changes to underlie behavioral alterations. Here we investigated whether motherhood changes a rat's sensory perception and spatial memory in conjunction with cortical neuronal structural changes. Female rats of different statuses, including virgin, pregnant, lactating, and primiparous rats were studied. Behavioral test showed that the lactating rats were most sensitive to heat, while rats with motherhood and reproduction experience outperformed virgin rats in a water maze task. By intracellular dye injection and computer-assisted 3-dimensional reconstruction, the dendritic arbors and spines of the layer III and V pyramidal neurons of the somatosensory cortex and CA1 hippocampal pyramidal neurons were revealed for closer analysis. The results showed that motherhood and reproductive experience increased dendritic spines but not arbors or the lengths of the layer III and V pyramidal neurons of the somatosensory cortex and CA1 hippocampal pyramidal neurons. In addition, lactating rats had a higher incidence of spines than pregnant or primiparous rats. The increase of dendritic spines was coupled with increased expression of the glutamatergic postsynaptic marker protein (PSD-95), especially in lactating rats. On the basis of the present results, it is concluded that motherhood enhanced rat sensory perception and spatial memory and was accompanied by increases in dendritic spines on output neurons of the somatosensory cortex and CA1 hippocampus. The effect was sustained for at least 6 weeks after the weaning of the pups.
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.
Miguel Ángel García-Cabezas
Full Text Available The estimation of the number or density of neurons and types of glial cells and their relative proportions in different brain areas are at the core of rigorous quantitative neuroanatomical studies. Unfortunately, the lack of detailed, updated, systematic, and well-illustrated descriptions of the cytology of neurons and glial cell types, especially in the primate brain, makes such studies especially demanding, often limiting their scope and broad use. Here, following extensive analysis of histological materials and the review of current and classical literature, we compile a list of precise morphological criteria that can facilitate and standardize identification of cells in stained sections examined under the microscope. We describe systematically and in detail the cytological features of neurons and glial cell types in the cerebral cortex of the macaque monkey and the human using semithin and thick sections stained for Nissl. We used this classical staining technique because it labels all cells in the brain in distinct ways. In addition, we corroborate key distinguishing characteristics of different cell types in sections immunolabeled for specific markers counterstained for Nissl and in ultrathin sections processed for electron microscopy. Finally, we summarize the core features that distinguish each cell type in easy-to-use tables and sketches, and structure these key features in an algorithm that can be used to systematically distinguish cellular types in the cerebral cortex. Moreover, we report high inter-observer algorithm reliability, which is a crucial test for obtaining consistent and reproducible cell counts in unbiased stereological studies. This protocol establishes a consistent framework that can be used to reliably identify and quantify cells in the cerebral cortex of primates as well as other mammalian species in health and disease.
García-Cabezas, Miguel Á.; John, Yohan J.; Barbas, Helen; Zikopoulos, Basilis
The estimation of the number or density of neurons and types of glial cells and their relative proportions in different brain areas are at the core of rigorous quantitative neuroanatomical studies. Unfortunately, the lack of detailed, updated, systematic and well-illustrated descriptions of the cytology of neurons and glial cell types, especially in the primate brain, makes such studies especially demanding, often limiting their scope and broad use. Here, following an extensive analysis of histological materials and the review of current and classical literature, we compile a list of precise morphological criteria that can facilitate and standardize identification of cells in stained sections examined under the microscope. We describe systematically and in detail the cytological features of neurons and glial cell types in the cerebral cortex of the macaque monkey and the human using semithin and thick sections stained for Nissl. We used this classical staining technique because it labels all cells in the brain in distinct ways. In addition, we corroborate key distinguishing characteristics of different cell types in sections immunolabeled for specific markers counterstained for Nissl and in ultrathin sections processed for electron microscopy. Finally, we summarize the core features that distinguish each cell type in easy-to-use tables and sketches, and structure these key features in an algorithm that can be used to systematically distinguish cellular types in the cerebral cortex. Moreover, we report high inter-observer algorithm reliability, which is a crucial test for obtaining consistent and reproducible cell counts in unbiased stereological studies. This protocol establishes a consistent framework that can be used to reliably identify and quantify cells in the cerebral cortex of primates as well as other mammalian species in health and disease. PMID:27847469
Castrop, H; Kammerl, M; Mann, Birgitte
Neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) expression in the kidney are localized to the cortical thick ascending limb of the loop of Henle (cTALH), including the macula region, and increase after salt restriction. Because of the similar localization and regulation of n...... excretion. These findings suggest that under these conditions the control of nNOS and COX-2 gene expression in the macula densa regions of the kidney cortex are not dependent on each other....
Full Text Available The cognitive deficits of schizophrenia appear to be associated with altered cortical GABA neurotransmission in the subsets of inhibitory neurons that express either parvalbumin (PV or somatostatin (SST. Identification of molecular mechanisms that operate selectively in these neurons is essential for developing targeted therapeutic strategies that do not influence other cell types. Consequently, we sought to identify, in the human cortex, gene products that are expressed selectively by PV and/or SST neurons, and that might contribute to their distinctive functional properties. Based on previously reported expression patterns in the cortex of mice and humans, we selected four genes: KCNS3, LHX6, KCNAB1, and PPP1R2, encoding K(+ channel Kv9.3 modulatory α-subunit, LIM homeobox protein 6, K(+ channel Kvβ1 subunit, and protein phosphatase 1 regulatory subunit 2, respectively, and examined their colocalization with PV or SST mRNAs in the human prefrontal cortex using dual-label in situ hybridization with (35S- and digoxigenin-labeled antisense riboprobes. KCNS3 mRNA was detected in almost all PV neurons, but not in SST neurons, and PV mRNA was detected in >90% of KCNS3 mRNA-expressing neurons. LHX6 mRNA was detected in almost all PV and >90% of SST neurons, while among all LHX6 mRNA-expressing neurons 50% expressed PV mRNA and >44% expressed SST mRNA. KCNAB1 and PPP1R2 mRNAs were detected in much larger populations of cortical neurons than PV or SST neurons. These findings indicate that KCNS3 is a selective marker of PV neurons, whereas LHX6 is expressed by both PV and SST neurons. KCNS3 and LHX6 might be useful for characterizing cell-type specific molecular alterations of cortical GABA neurotransmission and for the development of novel treatments targeting PV and/or SST neurons in schizophrenia.
Fried, Itzhak; Mukamel, Roy; Kreiman, Gabriel
Understanding how self-initiated behavior is encoded by neuronal circuits in the human brain remains elusive. We recorded the activity of 1019 neurons while twelve subjects performed self-initiated finger movement. We report progressive neuronal recruitment over ~1500 ms before subjects report making the decision to move. We observed progressive increase or decrease in neuronal firing rate, particularly in the supplementary motor area (SMA), as the reported time of decision was approached. A population of 256 SMA neurons is sufficient to predict in single trials the impending decision to move with accuracy greater than 80% already 700 ms prior to subjects’ awareness. Furthermore, we predict, with a precision of a few hundred ms, the actual time point of this voluntary decision to move. We implement a computational model whereby volition emerges once a change in internally generated firing rate of neuronal assemblies crosses a threshold. PMID:21315264
Phillip A Romo
Full Text Available Spike-responses of single binocular neurons were recorded from a distinct part of primary visual cortex, the parastriate cortex (cytoarchitectonic area 18 of anaesthetized and immobilized domestic cats. Functional identification of neurons was based on the ratios of phase-variant (F1 component to the mean firing rate (F0 of their spike-responses to optimized (orientation, direction, spatial and temporal frequencies and size sine-wave-luminance-modulated drifting grating patches presented separately via each eye. In over 95% of neurons, the interocular differences in the phase-sensitivities (differences in F1/F0 spike-response ratios were small (≤ 0.3 and in over 80% of neurons, the interocular differences in preferred orientations were ≤ 10°. The interocular correlations of the direction selectivity indices and optimal spatial frequencies, like those of the phase sensitivies and optimal orientations, were also strong (coefficients of correlation r ≥ 0.7005. By contrast, the interocular correlations of the optimal temporal frequencies, the diameters of summation areas of the excitatory responses and suppression indices were weak (coefficients of correlation r ≤ 0.4585. In cells with high eye dominance indices (HEDI cells, the mean magnitudes of suppressions evoked by stimulation of silent, extra-classical receptive fields via the non-dominant eyes, were significantly greater than those when the stimuli were presented via the dominant eyes. We argue that the well documented 'eye-origin specific' segregation of the lateral geniculate inputs underpinning distinct eye dominance columns in primary visual cortices of mammals with frontally positioned eyes (distinct eye dominance columns, combined with significant interocular differences in the strength of silent suppressive fields, putatively contribute to binocular stereoscopic vision.
Scott J Hayton
Full Text Available Impulse control is an executive process that allows animals to inhibit their actions until an appropriate time. Previously, we reported that learning a simple response inhibition task increases AMPA currents at excitatory synapses in the prelimbic region of the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC. Here, we examined whether modifications to intrinsic excitability occurred alongside the synaptic changes. To that end, we trained rats to obtain a food reward in a response inhibition task by withhold responding on a lever until they were signaled to respond. We then measured excitability, using whole-cell patch clamp recordings in brain slices, by quantifying action potentials generated by the injection of depolarizing current steps. Training in this task depressed the excitability of layer V pyramidal neurons of the prelimbic, but not infralimbic, region of the mPFC relative to behavioral controls. This decrease in maximum spiking frequency was significantly correlated with performance on the final session of the task. This change in intrinsic excitability may represent a homeostatic mechanism counterbalancing increased excitatory synaptic inputs onto those neurons in trained rats. Interestingly, subjects trained with a cue that predicted imminent reward availability had increased excitability in infralimbic, but not the prelimbic, pyramidal neurons. This dissociation suggests that both prelimbic and infralimbic neurons are involved in directing action, but specialized for different types of information, inhibitory or anticipatory, respectively.
Gu, Ya-Nan; Kim, Hang-Gu; Jeon, Chang-Jin
Microchiroptera (microbats) is a suborder of bats thought to have degenerated vision. However, many recent studies have shown that they have visual ability. In this study, we labeled neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS)—the synthesizing enzyme of the gaseous non-synaptic neurotransmitter nitric oxide—and co-localized it with calbindin D28K (CB), calretinin (CR), and parvalbumin (PV) in the visual cortex of the greater horseshoe bat (Rhinolophus ferrumequinum, a species of microbats). nNOS-immunoreactive (IR) neurons were found in all layers of the visual cortex. Intensely labeled neurons were most common in layer IV, and weakly labeled neurons were most common in layer VI. Majority of the nNOS-IR neurons were round- or oval-type neurons; no pyramidal-type neurons were found. None of these neurons co-localized with CB, CR, or PV. However, the synthesis of nitric oxide in the bat visual cortex by nNOS does not depend on CB, CR, or PV
Dorph-Petersen, Karl-Anton; Pierri, Joseph H.; Wu, Qiang
A number of studies that assessed the visual system in subjects with schizophrenia found impairments in early visual processing. Furthermore, functional imaging studies suggested changes in primary visual cortex activity in subjects with schizophrenia. Interestingly, postmortem studies of subject...
Kelly M. Moench
Full Text Available Dysfunction in corticolimbic circuits that mediate the extinction of learned fear responses is thought to underlie the perseveration of fear in stress-related psychopathologies, including post-traumatic stress disorder. Chronic stress produces dendritic hypertrophy in basolateral amygdala (BLA and dendritic hypotrophy in medial prefrontal cortex, whereas acute stress leads to hypotrophy in both BLA and prelimbic cortex. Additionally, both chronic and acute stress impair extinction retrieval. Here, we examined the effects of a single elevated platform stress on extinction learning and dendritic morphology in infralimbic cortex, a region considered to be critical for extinction. Acute stress produced resistance to extinction, as well as dendritic retraction in infralimbic cortex. Spine density on apical and basilar terminal branches was unaffected by stress. However, animals that underwent conditioning and extinction had decreased spine density on apical terminal branches. Thus, whereas dendritic morphology in infralimbic cortex appears to be particularly sensitive to stress, changes in spines may more sensitively reflect learning. Further, in stressed rats that underwent conditioning and extinction, the level of extinction learning was correlated with spine densities, in that rats with poorer extinction retrieval had more immature spines and fewer thin spines than rats with better extinction retrieval, suggesting that stress may have impaired learning-related spine plasticity. These results may have implications for understanding the role of medial prefrontal cortex in learning deficits associated with stress-related pathologies.
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.
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
Mouterde, Solveig C; Elie, Julie E; Mathevon, Nicolas; Theunissen, Frédéric E
One of the most complex tasks performed by sensory systems is "scene analysis": the interpretation of complex signals as behaviorally relevant objects. The study of this problem, universal to species and sensory modalities, is particularly challenging in audition, where sounds from various sources and localizations, degraded by propagation through the environment, sum to form a single acoustical signal. Here we investigated in a songbird model, the zebra finch, the neural substrate for ranging and identifying a single source. We relied on ecologically and behaviorally relevant stimuli, contact calls, to investigate the neural discrimination of individual vocal signature as well as sound source distance when calls have been degraded through propagation in a natural environment. Performing electrophysiological recordings in anesthetized birds, we found neurons in the auditory forebrain that discriminate individual vocal signatures despite long-range degradation, as well as neurons discriminating propagation distance, with varying degrees of multiplexing between both information types. Moreover, the neural discrimination performance of individual identity was not affected by propagation-induced degradation beyond what was induced by the decreased intensity. For the first time, neurons with distance-invariant identity discrimination properties as well as distance-discriminant neurons are revealed in the avian auditory cortex. Because these neurons were recorded in animals that had prior experience neither with the vocalizers of the stimuli nor with long-range propagation of calls, we suggest that this neural population is part of a general-purpose system for vocalizer discrimination and ranging. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Understanding how the brain makes sense of the multitude of stimuli that it continually receives in natural conditions is a challenge for scientists. Here we provide a new understanding of how the auditory system extracts behaviorally relevant information
Einstein, Michael C; Polack, Pierre-Olivier; Tran, Duy T; Golshani, Peyman
Low-frequency membrane potential ( V m ) oscillations were once thought to only occur in sleeping and anesthetized states. Recently, low-frequency V m oscillations have been described in inactive awake animals, but it is unclear whether they shape sensory processing in neurons and whether they occur during active awake behavioral states. To answer these questions, we performed two-photon guided whole-cell V m recordings from primary visual cortex layer 2/3 excitatory and inhibitory neurons in awake mice during passive visual stimulation and performance of visual and auditory discrimination tasks. We recorded stereotyped 3-5 Hz V m oscillations where the V m baseline hyperpolarized as the V m underwent high amplitude rhythmic fluctuations lasting 1-2 s in duration. When 3-5 Hz V m oscillations coincided with visual cues, excitatory neuron responses to preferred cues were significantly reduced. Despite this disruption to sensory processing, visual cues were critical for evoking 3-5 Hz V m oscillations when animals performed discrimination tasks and passively viewed drifting grating stimuli. Using pupillometry and animal locomotive speed as indicators of arousal, we found that 3-5 Hz oscillations were not restricted to unaroused states and that they occurred equally in aroused and unaroused states. Therefore, low-frequency V m oscillations play a role in shaping sensory processing in visual cortical neurons, even during active wakefulness and decision making. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT A neuron's membrane potential ( V m ) strongly shapes how information is processed in sensory cortices of awake animals. Yet, very little is known about how low-frequency V m oscillations influence sensory processing and whether they occur in aroused awake animals. By performing two-photon guided whole-cell recordings from layer 2/3 excitatory and inhibitory neurons in the visual cortex of awake behaving animals, we found visually evoked stereotyped 3-5 Hz V m oscillations that disrupt
Aguilar, David D; Giuffrida, Andrea; Lodge, Daniel J
Cannabis use has been associated with an increased risk to develop schizophrenia as well as symptom exacerbation in patients. In contrast, clinical studies have revealed an inverse relationship between the cerebrospinal fluid levels of the endocannabinoid anandamide and symptom severity, suggesting a therapeutic potential for endocannabinoid-enhancing drugs. Indeed, preclinical studies have shown that these drugs can reverse distinct behavioral deficits in a rodent model of schizophrenia. The mechanisms underlying the differences between exogenous and endogenous cannabinoid administration are currently unknown. Using the phencyclidine (PCP) rat model of schizophrenia, we compared the effects on neuronal activity of systematic administration of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) with the fatty acid amide hydrolase inhibitor URB597. Specifically, we found that the inhibitory response in the prefrontal cortex to THC administration was absent in PCP-treated rats. In contrast, an augmented response to endocannabinoid upregulation was observed in the prefrontal cortex of PCP-treated rats. Interestingly, differential effects were also observed at the neuronal population level, as endocannabinoid upregulation induced opposite effects on coordinated activity when compared with THC. Such information is important for understanding why marijuana and synthetic cannabinoid use may be contraindicated in schizophrenia patients while endocannabinoid enhancement may provide a novel therapeutic approach. © The Author(s) 2015.
Chen Bo; Xia Jing; Li Guangxing; Zhou Yifeng
Physiological and behavioral studies have demonstrated that a number of visual functions such as visual acuity, contrast sensitivity, and motion perception can be impaired by acute alcohol exposure. The orientation- and direction-selective responses of cells in primary visual cortex are thought to participate in the perception of form and motion. To investigate how orientation selectivity and direction selectivity of neurons are influenced by acute alcohol exposure in vivo, we used the extracellular single-unit recording technique to examine the response properties of neurons in primary visual cortex (A17) of adult cats. We found that alcohol reduces spontaneous activity, visual evoked unit responses, the signal-to-noise ratio, and orientation selectivity of A17 cells. In addition, small but detectable changes in both the preferred orientation/direction and the bandwidth of the orientation tuning curve of strongly orientation-biased A17 cells were observed after acute alcohol administration. Our findings may provide physiological evidence for some alcohol-related deficits in visual function observed in behavioral studies.
Prakash, Dharmalingam; Sudhandiran, Ganapasam
Dietary flavonoids have been suggested to promote brain health by protecting brain parenchymal cells. Recently, understanding the possible mechanism underlying neuroprotective efficacy of flavonoids is of great interest. Given that fisetin exerts neuroprotection, we have examined the mechanisms underlying fisetin in regulating Aβ aggregation and neuronal apoptosis induced by aluminium chloride (AlCl3) administration in vivo. Male Swiss albino mice were induced orally with AlCl3 (200 mg/kg. b.wt./day/8 weeks). Fisetin (15 mg/Kg. b.wt. orally) was administered for 4 weeks before AlCl3-induction and administered simultaneously for 8 weeks during AlCl3-induction. We found aggregation of Amyloid beta (Aβ 40-42), elevated expressions of Apoptosis stimulating kinase (ASK-1), p-JNK (c-Jun N-terminal Kinase), p53, cytochrome c, caspases-9 and 3, with altered Bax/Bcl-2 ratio in favour of apoptosis in cortex and hippocampus of AlCl3-administered mice. Furthermore, TUNEL and fluoro-jade C staining demonstrate neurodegeneration in cortex and hippocampus. Notably, treatment with fisetin significantly (Pfisetin treatment. We have identified the involvement of fisetin in regulating ASK-1 and p-JNK as possible mediator of Aβ aggregation and subsequent neuronal apoptosis during AlCl3-induced neurodegeneration. These findings define the possibility that fisetin may slow or prevent neurodegneration and can be utilised as neuroprotective agent against Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Hervig, Mona El-Sayed; Jensen, Nadja Cecilie Hvid; Rasmussen, Nadja Bredo
The medial prefrontal cortex (PFC) plays a major role in executive function by exerting a top-down control onto subcortical areas. Novelty-induced frontal cortex activation is 5-HT2A receptor (5-HT2AR) dependent. Here, we further investigated how blockade of 5-HT2ARs in mice exposed to a novel open-field...... of 5-HT2AR blockade on the striatal-projecting BLA neurons. Systemic administration of ketanserin (0.5 mg/kg) prior to novel open-field exposure resulted in reduced total numbers of c-Fos-IR cells in dorsomedial PFC areas and the BLA. Moreover, there was a positive correlation between the relative time...... spent in the centre of the open-field and BLA c-Fos-IR in the ketanserin-treated animals. Unilateral medial PFC lesions blocked this effect, ascertaining an involvement of this frontal cortex area. On the other hand, medial PFC lesioning exacerbated the more anxiogenic-like behaviour of the ketanserin...
Charvet, Christine J; Cahalane, Diarmuid J; Finlay, Barbara L
Uniformity, local variability, and systematic variation in neuron numbers per unit of cortical surface area across species and cortical areas have been claimed to characterize the isocortex. Resolving these claims has been difficult, because species, techniques, and cortical areas vary across studies. We present a stereological assessment of neuron numbers in layers II-IV and V-VI per unit of cortical surface area across the isocortex in rodents (hamster, Mesocricetus auratus; agouti, Dasyprocta azarae; paca, Cuniculus paca) and primates (owl monkey, Aotus trivigratus; tamarin, Saguinus midas; capuchin, Cebus apella); these chosen to vary systematically in cortical size. The contributions of species, cortical areas, and techniques (stereology, "isotropic fractionator") to neuron estimates were assessed. Neurons per unit of cortical surface area increase across the rostro-caudal (RC) axis in primates (varying by a factor of 1.64-2.13 across the rostral and caudal poles) but less in rodents (varying by a factor of 1.15-1.54). Layer II-IV neurons account for most of this variation. When integrated into the context of species variation, and this RC gradient in neuron numbers, conflicts between studies can be accounted for. The RC variation in isocortical neurons in adulthood mirrors the gradients in neurogenesis duration in development. © The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Full Text Available Many redundancies play functional roles in motor control and motor learning. For example, kinematic and muscle redundancies contribute to stabilizing posture and impedance control, respectively. Another redundancy is the number of neurons themselves; there are overwhelmingly more neurons than muscles, and many combinations of neural activation can generate identical muscle activity. The functional roles of this neuronal redundancy remains unknown. Analysis of a redundant neural network model makes it possible to investigate these functional roles while varying the number of model neurons and holding constant the number of output units. Our analysis reveals that learning speed reaches its maximum value if and only if the model includes sufficient neuronal redundancy. This analytical result does not depend on whether the distribution of the preferred direction is uniform or a skewed bimodal, both of which have been reported in neurophysiological studies. Neuronal redundancy maximizes learning speed, even if the neural network model includes recurrent connections, a nonlinear activation function, or nonlinear muscle units. Furthermore, our results do not rely on the shape of the generalization function. The results of this study suggest that one of the functional roles of neuronal redundancy is to maximize learning speed.
Joshi, Dipesh; Fung, Samantha J; Rothwell, Alice; Weickert, Cynthia Shannon
In the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC), reduced gray matter volume and reduced glutamic acid decarboxylase 67kDa isoform (GAD67) messenger (m)RNA are found in schizophrenia; however, how these alterations relate to developmental pathology of interneurons is unclear. The present study therefore aimed to determine if increased interstitial white matter neuron (IWMN) density exists in the OFC; whether gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)ergic neuron density in OFC white matter was altered; and how IWMN density may be related to an early-expressed inhibitory neuron marker, Dlx1, in OFC gray matter in schizophrenia. IWMN densities were determined (38 schizophrenia and 38 control subjects) for neuronal nuclear antigen (NeuN+) and 65/67 kDa isoform of glutamic acid decarboxylase immunopositive (GAD65/67+) neurons. In situ hybridization was performed to determine Dlx1 and GAD67 mRNA expression in the OFC gray matter. NeuN and GAD65/67 immunopositive cell density was significantly increased in the superficial white matter in schizophrenia. Gray matter Dlx1 and GAD67 mRNA expression were reduced in schizophrenia. Dlx1 mRNA levels were negatively correlated with GAD65/67 IWMN density. Our study provides evidence that pathology of IWMNs in schizophrenia includes GABAergic interneurons and that increased IWMN density may be related to GABAergic deficits in the overlying gray matter. These findings provide evidence at the cellular level that the OFC is a site of pathology in schizophrenia and support the hypothesis that inappropriate migration of cortical inhibitory interneurons occurs in schizophrenia. Copyright © 2012 Society of Biological Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Kimberly D Siegmund
Full Text Available The role of DNA cytosine methylation, an epigenetic regulator of chromatin structure and function, during normal and pathological brain development and aging remains unclear. Here, we examined by MethyLight PCR the DNA methylation status at 50 loci, encompassing primarily 5' CpG islands of genes related to CNS growth and development, in temporal neocortex of 125 subjects ranging in age from 17 weeks of gestation to 104 years old. Two psychiatric disease cohorts--defined by chronic neurodegeneration (Alzheimer's or lack thereof (schizophrenia--were included. A robust and progressive rise in DNA methylation levels across the lifespan was observed for 8/50 loci (GABRA2, GAD1, HOXA1, NEUROD1, NEUROD2, PGR, STK11, SYK typically in conjunction with declining levels of the corresponding mRNAs. Another 16 loci were defined by a sharp rise in DNA methylation levels within the first few months or years after birth. Disease-associated changes were limited to 2/50 loci in the Alzheimer's cohort, which appeared to reflect an acceleration of the age-related change in normal brain. Additionally, methylation studies on sorted nuclei provided evidence for bidirectional methylation events in cortical neurons during the transition from childhood to advanced age, as reflected by significant increases at 3, and a decrease at 1 of 10 loci. Furthermore, the DNMT3a de novo DNA methyl-transferase was expressed across all ages, including a subset of neurons residing in layers III and V of the mature cortex. Therefore, DNA methylation is dynamically regulated in the human cerebral cortex throughout the lifespan, involves differentiated neurons, and affects a substantial portion of genes predominantly by an age-related increase.
Vaysse, Laurence; Conchou, Fabrice; Demain, Boris; Davoust, Carole; Plas, Benjamin; Ruggieri, Cyrielle; Benkaddour, Mehdi; Simonetta-Moreau, Marion; Loubinoux, Isabelle
The aim of this study was to set up (a) a large primary motor cortex (M1) lesion in rodent and (b) the conditions for evaluating a long-lasting motor deficit in order to propose a valid model to test neuronal replacement therapies aimed at improving motor deficit recovery. A mitochondrial toxin, malonate, was injected to induce extensive destruction of the forelimb M1 cortex. Three key motor functions that are usually evaluated following cerebral lesion in the clinic-strength, target reaching, and fine dexterity-were assessed in rats by 2 tests, a forelimb grip strength test and a skilled reaching task (staircase) for reaching and dexterity. The potential enhancement of postlesion recovery induced by a neuronal cell transplantation was then explored and confirmed by histological analyses. Both tests showed a severe functional impairment 2 days post lesion, however, reaching remained intact. Deficits in forelimb strength were long lasting (up to 3 months) but spontaneously recovered despite the extensive lesion size. This natural grip strength recovery could be enhanced by cell therapy. Histological analyses confirmed the presence of grafted cells 3 months postgraft and showed partial tissue reconstruction with some living neuronal cells in the graft. In contrast, fine dexterity never recovered in the staircase test even after grafting. These results suggest that cell replacement was only partially effective and that the forelimb M1 area may be a node of the sensorimotor network, where compensation from secondary pathways could account for strength recovery but recovery of forelimb fine dexterity requires extensive tissue reconstruction. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).
Van Ackeren, Markus Johannes; Barbero, Francesca M; Mattioni, Stefania; Bottini, Roberto
The occipital cortex of early blind individuals (EB) activates during speech processing, challenging the notion of a hard-wired neurobiology of language. But, at what stage of speech processing do occipital regions participate in EB? Here we demonstrate that parieto-occipital regions in EB enhance their synchronization to acoustic fluctuations in human speech in the theta-range (corresponding to syllabic rate), irrespective of speech intelligibility. Crucially, enhanced synchronization to the intelligibility of speech was selectively observed in primary visual cortex in EB, suggesting that this region is at the interface between speech perception and comprehension. Moreover, EB showed overall enhanced functional connectivity between temporal and occipital cortices that are sensitive to speech intelligibility and altered directionality when compared to the sighted group. These findings suggest that the occipital cortex of the blind adopts an architecture that allows the tracking of speech material, and therefore does not fully abstract from the reorganized sensory inputs it receives. PMID:29338838
Sellinger, O.Z.; Johnson, D.E.; Santiago, J.C.; Idoyaga-Vargas, V.; Michigan Univ., Ann Arbor
Recently, a cell separation procedure was developed which makes possible the preparation of mutually uncontaminated fractions of neuronal cell bodies and intact glial cells from gram amounts of brain tissue. In the present study, this procedure was used to examine the changing labelling rates in vivo of neuronal and glial proteins during early postnatal development and the decay of radioactivity in these proteins after a single intracerebral administration of [U- 14 C]phenylalanine
Pulimood, Nisha S; Rodrigues, Wandilson Dos Santos; Atkinson, Devon A; Mooney, Sandra M; Medina, Alexandre E
The transcription factors CREB (cAMP response element binding factor), SRF (serum response factor), and MEF2 (myocyte enhancer factor 2) play critical roles in the mechanisms underlying neuronal plasticity. However, the role of the activation of these transcription factors in the different components of plasticity in vivo is not well known. In this study, we tested the role of CREB, SRF, and MEF2 in ocular dominance plasticity (ODP), a paradigm of activity-dependent neuronal plasticity in the visual cortex. These three proteins bind to the synaptic activity response element (SARE), an enhancer sequence found upstream of many plasticity-related genes (Kawashima et al., 2009; Rodríguez-Tornos et al., 2013), and can act cooperatively to express Arc , a gene required for ODP (McCurry et al., 2010). We used viral-mediated gene transfer to block the transcription function of CREB, SRF, and MEF2 in the visual cortex, and measured visually evoked potentials in awake male and female mice before and after a 7 d monocular deprivation, which allowed us to examine both the depression component (Dc-ODP) and potentiation component (Pc-ODP) of plasticity independently. We found that CREB, SRF, and MEF2 are all required for ODP, but have differential effects on Dc-ODP and Pc-ODP. CREB is necessary for both Dc-ODP and Pc-ODP, whereas SRF and MEF2 are only needed for Dc-ODP. This finding supports previous reports implicating SRF and MEF2 in long-term depression (required for Dc-ODP), and CREB in long-term potentiation (required for Pc-ODP). SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Activity-dependent neuronal plasticity is the cellular basis for learning and memory, and it is crucial for the refinement of neuronal circuits during development. Identifying the mechanisms of activity-dependent neuronal plasticity is crucial to finding therapeutic interventions in the myriad of disorders where it is disrupted, such as Fragile X syndrome, Rett syndrome, epilepsy, major depressive disorder, and autism
Ładno, W; Gawlak, M; Szulczyk, P; Nurowska, E
TREK-2-like channels were identified on the basis of electrophysiological and pharmacological tests performed on freshly isolated and enzymatically/mechanically dispersed pyramidal neurons of the rat medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). Single-channel currents were recorded in cell-attached configuration and the impact of adrenergic receptors (α 1 , α 2 , β) stimulation on spontaneously appearing TREK-2-like channel activity was tested. The obtained results indicate that noradrenaline decreases the mean open probability of TREK-2-like channel currents by activation of β 1 but not of α 1 - and α 2 -adrenergic receptors. Mean open time and channel conductance were not affected. The system of intracellular signaling pathways depends on the activation of protein kinase A. We also show that adrenergic control of TREK-2-like channel currents by adrenergic receptors was similar in pyramidal neurons isolated from young, adolescent, and adult rats. Immunofluorescent confocal scans of mPFC slices confirmed the presence of the TREK-2 protein, which was abundant in layer V pyramidal neurons. The role of TREK-2-like channel control by adrenergic receptors is discussed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Cubelos, Beatriz; Sebastián-Serrano, Alvaro; Beccari, Leonardo; Calcagnotto, Maria Elisa; Cisneros, Elsa; Kim, Seonhee; Dopazo, Ana; Alvarez-Dolado, Manuel; Redondo, Juan Miguel; Bovolenta, Paola; Walsh, Christopher A.; Nieto, Marta
Summary Dendrite branching and spine formation determines the function of morphologically distinct and specialized neuronal subclasses. However, little is known about the programs instructing specific branching patterns in vertebrate neurons and whether such programs influence dendritic spines and synapses. Using knockout and knockdown studies combined with morphological, molecular and electrophysiological analysis we show that the homeobox Cux1 and Cux2 are intrinsic and complementary regulators of dendrite branching, spine development and synapse formation in layer II–III neurons of the cerebral cortex. Cux genes control the number and maturation of dendritic spines partly through direct regulation of the expression of Xlr3b and Xlr4b, chromatin remodeling genes previously implicated in cognitive defects. Accordingly, abnormal dendrites and synapses in Cux2−/− mice correlate with reduced synaptic function and defects in working memory. These demonstrate critical roles of Cux in dendritogenesis and highlight novel subclass-specific mechanisms of synapse regulation that contribute to the establishment of cognitive circuits. PMID:20510857
Yoshida, Motoharu; Jochems, Arthur; Hasselmo, Michael E
Mechanisms underlying grid cell firing in the medial entorhinal cortex (MEC) still remain unknown. Computational modeling studies have suggested that cellular properties such as spike frequency adaptation and persistent firing might underlie the grid cell firing. Recent in vivo studies also suggest that cholinergic activation influences grid cell firing. Here we investigated the anatomical distribution of firing frequency adaptation, the medium spike after hyperpolarization potential (mAHP), subthreshold membrane potential oscillations, sag potential, input resistance and persistent firing, in MEC layer II principal cells using in vitro whole-cell patch clamp recordings in rats. Anatomical distributions of these properties were compared along both the dorso-ventral and medio-lateral axes, both with and without the cholinergic receptor agonist carbachol. We found that spike frequency adaptation is significantly stronger in ventral than in dorsal neurons both with and without carbachol. Spike frequency adaptation was significantly correlated with the duration of the mAHP, which also showed a gradient along the dorso-ventral axis. In carbachol, we found that about 50% of MEC layer II neurons show persistent firing which lasted more than 30 seconds. Persistent firing of MEC layer II neurons might contribute to grid cell firing by providing the excitatory drive. Dorso-ventral differences in spike frequency adaptation we report here are opposite from previous predictions by a computational model. We discuss an alternative mechanism as to how dorso-ventral differences in spike frequency adaptation could contribute to different scales of grid spacing.
Popelář, Jiří; Šuta, Daniel; Lindovský, Jiří; Bureš, Zbyněk; Pysaněnko, Kateryna; Chumak, Tetyana; Syka, Josef
Roč. 332, feb (2016), s. 7-16 ISSN 0378-5955 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GBP304/12/G069; GA ČR(CZ) GAP303/12/1347 Institutional support: RVO:68378041 Keywords : auditory cortex * cooling * cortical inactivation * efferent system Subject RIV: ED - Physiology Impact factor: 2.906, year: 2016
Good, P. F.; Morrison, J. H.; Bloom, F. E. (Principal Investigator)
Projections of the entorhinal cortex to the hippocampus are well known from the classical studies of Cajal (Ramon y Cajal, 1904) and Lorente de No (1933). Projections from the entorhinal cortex to neocortical areas are less well understood. Such connectivity is likely to underlie the consolidation of long-term declarative memory in neocortical sites. In the present study, a projection arising in layer V of the entorhinal cortex and terminating in a polymodal association area of the superior temporal gyrus has been identified with the use of retrograde tracing. The dendritic arbors of neurons giving rise to this projection were further investigated by cell filling and confocal microscopy with computer reconstruction. This analysis demonstrated that the dendritic arbor of identified projection neurons was largely confined to layer V, with the exception of a solitary, simple apical dendrite occasionally ascending to superficial laminae but often confined to the lamina dissecans (layer IV). Finally, immunoreactivity for glutamate-receptor subunit proteins GluR 5/6/7 of the dendritic arbor of identified entorhinal projection neurons was examined. The solitary apical dendrite of identified entorhinal projection neurons was prominently immunolabeled for GluR 5/6/7, as was the dendritic arbor of basilar dendrites of these neurons. The restriction of the large bulk of the dendritic arbor of identified entorhinal projection neurons to layer V implies that these neurons are likely to be heavily influenced by hippocampal output arriving in the deep layers of the entorhinal cortex. Immunoreactivity for GluR 5/6/7 throughout the dendritic arbor of such neurons indicates that this class of glutamate receptor is in a position to play a prominent role in mediating excitatory neurotransmission within hippocampal-entorhinal circuits.
Roth, Fabian C; Beyer, Katinka M; Both, Martin; Draguhn, Andreas; Egorov, Alexei V
The entorhinal cortex (EC) is a critical component of the medial temporal lobe (MTL) memory system. Local networks within the MTL express a variety of state-dependent network oscillations that are believed to organize neuronal activity during memory formation. The peculiar pattern of sharp wave-ripple complexes (SPW-R) entrains neurons by a very fast oscillation at ∼200 Hz in the hippocampal areas CA3 and CA1 and then propagates through the "output loop" into the EC. The precise mechanisms of SPW-R propagation and the resulting cellular input patterns in the mEC are, however, largely unknown. We therefore investigated the activity of layer V (LV) principal neurons of the medial EC (mEC) during SPW-R oscillations in horizontal mouse brain slices. Intracellular recordings in the mEC were combined with extracellular monitoring of propagating network activity. SPW-R in CA1 were regularly followed by negative field potential deflections in the mEC. Propagation of SPW-R activity from CA1 to the mEC was mostly monosynaptic and excitatory, such that synaptic input to mEC LV neurons directly reflected unit activity in CA1. Comparison with propagating network activity from CA3 to CA1 revealed a similar role of excitatory long-range connections for both regions. However, SPW-R-induced activity in CA1 involved strong recruitment of rhythmic synaptic inhibition and corresponding fast field oscillations, in contrast to the mEC. These differences between features of propagating SPW-R emphasize the differential processing of network activity by each local network of the hippocampal output loop. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Hanamori, T; Kunitake, T; Kato, K; Kannan, H
Extracellular unit responses to gustatory stimulation of the pharyngolaryngeal region, baroreceptor and chemoreceptor stimulation, and tail pinch were recorded from the insular cortex of anesthetized and paralyzed rats. Of the 32 neurons identified, 28 responded to at least one of the nine stimuli used in the present study. Of the 32 neurons, 11 showed an excitatory response to tail pinch, 13 showed an inhibitory response, and the remaining eight had no response. Of the 32 neurons, eight responded to baroreceptor stimulation by an intravenous (i.v.) injection of methoxamine hydrochloride (Mex), four were excitatory and four were inhibitory. Thirteen neurons were excited and six neurons were inhibited by an arterial chemoreceptor stimulation by an i.v. injection of sodium cyanide (NaCN). Twenty-two neurons were responsive to at least one of the gustatory stimuli (deionized water, 1.0 M NaCl, 30 mM HCl, 30 mM quinine HCl, and 1.0 M sucrose); five to 11 excitatory neurons and three to seven inhibitory neurons for each stimulus. A large number of the neurons (25/32) received converging inputs from more than one stimulus among the nine stimuli used in the present study. Most neurons (23/32) received converging inputs from different modalities (gustatory, visceral, and tail pinch). The neurons responded were located in the insular cortex between 2.0 mm anterior and 0.2 mm posterior to the anterior edge of the joining of the anterior commissure (AC); the mean location was 1.2 mm (n=28) anterior to the AC. This indicates that most of the neurons identified in the present study seem to be located in the region posterior to the taste area and anterior to the visceral area in the insular cortex. These results indicate that the insular cortex neurons distributing between the taste area and the visceral area receive convergent inputs from gustatory, baroreceptor, chemoreceptor, and nociceptive organs. Copyright 1998 Elsevier Science B.V.
Sachidhanandam, Shankar; Sreenivasan, Varun; Kyriakatos, Alexandros; Kremer, Yves; Petersen, Carl C H
Neocortical activity can evoke sensory percepts, but the cellular mechanisms remain poorly understood. We trained mice to detect single brief whisker stimuli and report perceived stimuli by licking to obtain a reward. Pharmacological inactivation and optogenetic stimulation demonstrated a causal role for the primary somatosensory barrel cortex. Whole-cell recordings from barrel cortex neurons revealed membrane potential correlates of sensory perception. Sensory responses depended strongly on prestimulus cortical state, but both slow-wave and desynchronized cortical states were compatible with task performance. Whisker deflection evoked an early (sensory response that was encoded through cell-specific reversal potentials. A secondary late (50-400 ms) depolarization was enhanced on hit trials compared to misses. Optogenetic inactivation revealed a causal role for late excitation. Our data reveal dynamic processing in the sensory cortex during task performance, with an early sensory response reliably encoding the stimulus and later secondary activity contributing to driving the subjective percept.
Lu, H. P.; Syka, Josef; Chiu, T. W.; Poon, P. W. F.
Roč. 314, AUG 2014 (2014), s. 42-50 ISSN 0378-5955 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GCP303/11/J005; GA ČR(CZ) GAP304/12/1342 Institutional support: RVO:68378041 Keywords : inferior colliculus * cochlear nucleus * neocortical neurons Subject RIV: FH - Neurology Impact factor: 2.968, year: 2014
Hage, Steffen R; Nieder, Andreas
Complex audio-vocal integration systems depend on a strong interconnection between the auditory and the vocal motor system. To gain cognitive control over audio-vocal interaction during vocal motor control, the PFC needs to be involved. Neurons in the ventrolateral PFC (VLPFC) have been shown to separately encode the sensory perceptions and motor production of vocalizations. It is unknown, however, whether single neurons in the PFC reflect audio-vocal interactions. We therefore recorded single-unit activity in the VLPFC of rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta) while they produced vocalizations on command or passively listened to monkey calls. We found that 12% of randomly selected neurons in VLPFC modulated their discharge rate in response to acoustic stimulation with species-specific calls. Almost three-fourths of these auditory neurons showed an additional modulation of their discharge rates either before and/or during the monkeys' motor production of vocalization. Based on these audio-vocal interactions, the VLPFC might be well positioned to combine higher order auditory processing with cognitive control of the vocal motor output. Such audio-vocal integration processes in the VLPFC might constitute a precursor for the evolution of complex learned audio-vocal integration systems, ultimately giving rise to human speech. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/357030-11$15.00/0.
Golonzhka, Olga; Nord, Alex; Tang, Paul L F
We demonstrate using conditional mutagenesis that Pbx1, with and without Pbx2(+/-) sensitization, regulates regional identity and laminar patterning of the developing mouse neocortex in cortical progenitors (Emx1-Cre) and in newly generated neurons (Nex1-Cre). Pbx1/2 mutants have three salient...
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.
Lang, Nicolas; Siebner, Hartwig R; Ward, Nick S; Lee, Lucy; Nitsche, Michael A; Paulus, Walter; Rothwell, John C; Lemon, Roger N; Frackowiak, Richard S
Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) of the primary motor hand area (M1) can produce lasting polarity-specific effects on corticospinal excitability and motor learning in humans. In 16 healthy volunteers, O positron emission tomography (PET) of regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) at rest and during finger movements was used to map lasting changes in regional synaptic activity following 10 min of tDCS (+/-1 mA). Bipolar tDCS was given through electrodes placed over the left M1 and right frontopolar cortex. Eight subjects received anodal or cathodal tDCS of the left M1, respectively. When compared to sham tDCS, anodal and cathodal tDCS induced widespread increases and decreases in rCBF in cortical and subcortical areas. These changes in rCBF were of the same magnitude as task-related rCBF changes during finger movements and remained stable throughout the 50-min period of PET scanning. Relative increases in rCBF after real tDCS compared to sham tDCS were found in the left M1, right frontal pole, right primary sensorimotor cortex and posterior brain regions irrespective of polarity. With the exception of some posterior and ventral areas, anodal tDCS increased rCBF in many cortical and subcortical regions compared to cathodal tDCS. Only the left dorsal premotor cortex demonstrated an increase in movement related activity after cathodal tDCS, however, modest compared with the relatively strong movement-independent effects of tDCS. Otherwise, movement related activity was unaffected by tDCS. Our results indicate that tDCS is an effective means of provoking sustained and widespread changes in regional neuronal activity. The extensive spatial and temporal effects of tDCS need to be taken into account when tDCS is used to modify brain function.
Tanaka, Takuma; Aoyagi, Toshio; Kaneko, Takeshi
We propose a new principle for replicating receptive field properties of neurons in the primary visual cortex. We derive a learning rule for a feedforward network, which maintains a low firing rate for the output neurons (resulting in temporal sparseness) and allows only a small subset of the neurons in the network to fire at any given time (resulting in population sparseness). Our learning rule also sets the firing rates of the output neurons at each time step to near-maximum or near-minimum levels, resulting in neuronal reliability. The learning rule is simple enough to be written in spatially and temporally local forms. After the learning stage is performed using input image patches of natural scenes, output neurons in the model network are found to exhibit simple-cell-like receptive field properties. When the output of these simple-cell-like neurons are input to another model layer using the same learning rule, the second-layer output neurons after learning become less sensitive to the phase of gratings than the simple-cell-like input neurons. In particular, some of the second-layer output neurons become completely phase invariant, owing to the convergence of the connections from first-layer neurons with similar orientation selectivity to second-layer neurons in the model network. We examine the parameter dependencies of the receptive field properties of the model neurons after learning and discuss their biological implications. We also show that the localized learning rule is consistent with experimental results concerning neuronal plasticity and can replicate the receptive fields of simple and complex cells.
Fame, Ryann M; Dehay, Colette; Kennedy, Henry; Macklis, Jeffrey D
Callosal projection neurons (CPN) interconnect the neocortical hemispheres via the corpus callosum and are implicated in associative integration of multimodal information. CPN have undergone differential evolutionary elaboration, leading to increased diversity of cortical neurons-and more extensive and varied connections in neocortical gray and white matter-in primates compared with rodents. In mouse, distinct sets of genes are enriched in discrete subpopulations of CPN, indicating the molecular diversity of rodent CPN. Elements of rodent CPN functional and organizational diversity might thus be present in the further elaborated primate cortex. We address the hypothesis that genes controlling mouse CPN subtype diversity might reflect molecular patterns shared among mammals that arose prior to the divergence of rodents and primates. We find that, while early expression of the examined CPN-enriched genes, and postmigratory expression of these CPN-enriched genes in deep layers are highly conserved (e.g., Ptn, Nnmt, Cited2, Dkk3), in contrast, the examined genes expressed by superficial layer CPN show more variable levels of conservation (e.g., EphA3, Chn2). These results suggest that there has been evolutionarily differential retraction and elaboration of superficial layer CPN subpopulations between mouse and macaque, with independent derivation of novel populations in primates. Together, these data inform future studies regarding CPN subpopulations that are unique to primates and rodents, and indicate putative evolutionary relationships. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: email@example.com.
Doron, Guy; von Heimendahl, Moritz; Schlattmann, Peter; Houweling, Arthur R; Brecht, Michael
The action potential activity of single cortical neurons can evoke measurable sensory effects, but it is not known how spiking parameters and neuronal subtypes affect the evoked sensations. Here, we examined the effects of spike train irregularity, spike frequency, and spike number on the detectability of single-neuron stimulation in rat somatosensory cortex. For regular-spiking, putative excitatory neurons, detectability increased with spike train irregularity and decreasing spike frequencies but was not affected by spike number. Stimulation of single, fast-spiking, putative inhibitory neurons led to a larger sensory effect compared to regular-spiking neurons, and the effect size depended only on spike irregularity. An ideal-observer analysis suggests that, under our experimental conditions, rats were using integration windows of a few hundred milliseconds or more. Our data imply that the behaving animal is sensitive to single neurons' spikes and even to their temporal patterning. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Aerts, Jeroen; Nys, Julie; Moons, Lieve; Hu, Tjing-Tjing; Arckens, Lut
Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are Zn2+ dependent endopeptidases considered to be essential for normal brain development and neuroplasticity by modulating extracellular matrix proteins, receptors, adhesion molecules, growth factors and cytoskeletal proteins. Specifically MMP-3 has recently been implicated in synaptic plasticity, hippocampus-dependent learning and neuronal development and migration in the cerebellum. However, the function(s) of this enzyme in the neocortex is understudied. T...
Sankaranarayani, R; Nalini, A; Rao Laxmi, T; Raju, T R
Although definite evidences are available to state that, neuronal activity is a prime determinant of animal behavior, the specific relationship between local field potentials of the motor cortex after intervention with CSF from human patients and animal behavior have remained opaque. The present study has investigated whether cerebrospinal fluid from sporadic amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (sALS) patients could disrupt neuronal activity of the motor cortex, which could be associated with disturbances in the motor performance of adult rats. CSF from ALS patients (ALS-CSF) was infused into the lateral ventricle of Wistar rats. After 24h, the impact of ALS-CSF on the local field potentials (LFPs) of the motor cortex and on the motor behavior of animals were examined. The results indicate that ALS-CSF produced a bivariate distribution on the relative power values of the LFPs of the motor cortex 24h following infusion. However, the behavioral results did not show bimodality, instead showed consistent decrease in motor performance: on rotarod and grip strength meter. The neuronal activity of the motor cortex negatively correlated with the duration of ALS symptoms at the time of lumbar puncture. Although the effect of ALS-CSF was more pronounced at 24h following infusion, the changes observed in LFPs and motor performance appeared to revert to baseline values at later time points of testing. In the current study, we have shown that, ALS-CSF has the potential to perturb neuronal activity of the rat motor cortex which was associated with poor performance on motor function tests.
Vincis, Roberto; Fontanini, Alfredo
A growing body of literature has demonstrated that primary sensory cortices are not exclusively unimodal, but can respond to stimuli of different sensory modalities. However, several questions concerning the neural representation of cross-modal stimuli remain open. Indeed, it is poorly understood if cross-modal stimuli evoke unique or overlapping representations in a primary sensory cortex and whether learning can modulate these representations. Here we recorded single unit responses to auditory, visual, somatosensory, and olfactory stimuli in the gustatory cortex (GC) of alert rats before and after associative learning. We found that, in untrained rats, the majority of GC neurons were modulated by a single modality. Upon learning, both prevalence of cross-modal responsive neurons and their breadth of tuning increased, leading to a greater overlap of representations. Altogether, our results show that the gustatory cortex represents cross-modal stimuli according to their sensory identity, and that learning changes the overlap of cross-modal representations.
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.
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.
Saak V. Ovsepian
Full Text Available The physiological relevance of the uptake of ligands with no apparent trophic functions via the p75 neurotrophin receptor (p75NTR remains unclear. Herein, we propose a homeostatic role for this in clearance of amyloid β (Aβ in the brain. We hypothesize that uptake of Aβ in conjunction with p75NTR followed by its degradation in lysosomes endows cholinergic basalo-cortical projections enriched in this receptor a facility for maintaining physiological levels of Aβ in target areas. Thus, in addition to the diffuse modulator influence and channeling of extra-thalamic signals, cholinergic innervations could supply the cerebral cortex with an elaborate system for Aβ drainage. Interpreting the emerging relationship of new molecular data with established role of cholinergic modulator system in regulating cortical network dynamics should provide new insights into the brain physiology and mechanisms of neuro-degenerative diseases.
Matsushita, Koji [Kyoto Prefectural Univ. of Medicine (Japan)
In order to study the molecular mechanisms of neuronal migration on developing rat cerebral cortex, we need a tissue culture system in which neuronal migration can be observed. We prepared a tissue culture system of embryonic rat cerebral cortex starting on embryonic day 16 and cultivating it for 48 hours. The autoradiographic study in this system revealed not only the migration of [sup 3]H-thymidine labeled neurons but also neuronal migration delays from low doses of ionizing radiation of more than 10 cGy. In addition, on immunohistochemical study, cell-cell adhesion molecule N-CAM staining was remarkably decreased in the matrix cell layer. In the tissue culture system where monoclonal anti-N-CAM antibodies were added, neuronal migration delay comparable to that of 20 cGy radiation was found. In conclusion, it was speculated that neuronal migration delay might be caused by disturbed N-CAM synthesis in matrix cells after low dose ionizing radiation. (author).
Urrego, Diana; Troncoso, Julieta; Múnera, Alejandro
This work was aimed at characterizing structural changes in primary motor cortex layer 5 pyramidal neurons and their relationship with microglial density induced by facial nerve lesion using a murine facial paralysis model. Adult transgenic mice, expressing green fluorescent protein in microglia and yellow fluorescent protein in projecting neurons, were submitted to either unilateral section of the facial nerve or sham surgery. Injured animals were sacrificed either 1 or 3weeks after surgery. Two-photon excitation microscopy was then used for evaluating both layer 5 pyramidal neurons and microglia in vibrissal primary motor cortex (vM1). It was found that facial nerve lesion induced long-lasting changes in the dendritic morphology of vM1 layer 5 pyramidal neurons and in their surrounding microglia. Dendritic arborization of the pyramidal cells underwent overall shrinkage. Apical dendrites suffered transient shortening while basal dendrites displayed sustained shortening. Moreover, dendrites suffered transient spine pruning. Significantly higher microglial cell density was found surrounding vM1 layer 5 pyramidal neurons after facial nerve lesion with morphological bias towards the activated phenotype. These results suggest that facial nerve lesions elicit active dendrite remodeling due to pyramidal neuron and microglia interaction, which could be the pathophysiological underpinning of some neuropathic motor sequelae in humans. PMID:26064916
Ueno, Tatsuya; Yamada, Junko; Nishijima, Haruo; Arai, Akira; Migita, Keisuke; Baba, Masayuki; Ueno, Shinya; Tomiyama, Masahiko
Levodopa-induced dyskinesia (LID) is a major complication of long-term dopamine replacement therapy for Parkinson's disease, and becomes increasingly problematic in the advanced stage of the disease. Although the cause of LID still remains unclear, there is accumulating evidence from animal experiments that it results from maladaptive plasticity, resulting in supersensitive excitatory transmission at corticostriatal synapses. Recent work using transcranial magnetic stimulation suggests that the motor cortex displays the same supersensitivity in Parkinson's disease patients with LID. To date, the cellular mechanisms underlying the abnormal cortical plasticity have not been examined. The morphology of the dendritic spines has a strong relationship to synaptic plasticity. Therefore, we explored the spine morphology of pyramidal neurons in the motor cortex in a rat model of LID. We used control rats, 6-hydroxydopamine-lesioned rats (a model of Parkinson's disease), 6-hydroxydopamine-lesioned rats chronically treated with levodopa (a model of LID), and control rats chronically treated with levodopa. Because the direct pathway of the basal ganglia plays a central role in the development of LID, we quantified the density and size of dendritic spines in intratelencephalic (IT)-type pyramidal neurons in M1 cortex that project to the striatal medium spiny neurons in the direct pathway. The spine density was not different among the four groups. In contrast, spine size became enlarged in the Parkinson's disease and LID rat models. The enlargement was significantly greater in the LID model than in the Parkinson's disease model. This enlargement of the spines suggests that IT-type pyramidal neurons acquire supersensitivity to excitatory stimuli. To confirm this possibility, we monitored miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs) in the IT-type pyramidal neurons in M1 cortex using whole-cell patch clamp. The amplitude of the mEPSCs was significantly increased in the LID
This intriguing book was born out of the many discussions the authors had in the past 10 years about the role of scale-free structure and dynamics in producing intelligent behavior in brains. The microscopic dynamics of neural networks is well described by the prevailing paradigm based in a narrow interpretation of the neuron doctrine. This book broadens the doctrine by incorporating the dynamics of neural fields, as first revealed by modeling with differential equations (K-sets). The book broadens that approach by application of random graph theory (neuropercolation). The book concludes with diverse commentaries that exemplify the wide range of mathematical/conceptual approaches to neural fields. This book is intended for researchers, postdocs, and graduate students, who see the limitations of network theory and seek a beachhead from which to embark on mesoscopic and macroscopic neurodynamics.
Cattaneo, Zaira; Devlin, Joseph T; Salvini, Francesca; Vecchi, Tomaso; Silvanto, Juha
The left ventral premotor cortex (PMv) is preferentially activated by exemplars of tools, suggestive of category specificity in this region. Here we used state-dependent transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to investigate the causal role of such category-specific neuronal representations in the encoding of tool words. Priming to a category name (either "Tool" or "Animal") was used with the objective of modulating the initial activation state of this region prior to application of TMS and the presentation of the target stimulus. When the target word was an exemplar of the "Tool" category, the effects of TMS applied over PMv (but not PMd) interacted with priming history by facilitating reaction times on incongruent trials while not affecting congruent trials. This congruency/TMS interaction implies that the "Tool" and "Animal" primes had a differential effect on the initial activation state of the left PMv and implies that this region is one neural locus of category-specific behavioral priming for the "Tool" category. TMS applied over PMv had no behavioral effect when the target stimulus was an exemplar of the "Animal" category, regardless of whether the target word was congruent or incongruent with the prime. That TMS applied over the left PMv interacted with a priming effect that extended from the category name ("Tool") to exemplars of that category suggests that this region contains neuronal representation associated with a specific semantic category. Our results also demonstrate that the state-dependent effects obtained in the combination of visual priming and TMS are useful in the study of higher-level cognitive functions. Copyright (c) 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Liu, Chun-Hong; Liu, Cun-Zhi; Zhang, Jihui; Yuan, Zhen; Tang, Li-Rong; Tie, Chang-Le; Fan, Jin; Liu, Qing-Quan
Poor sleep and insomnia have been recognized to be strongly correlated with the development of depression. The exploration of the basic mechanism of sleep disturbance could provide the basis for improved understanding and treatment of insomnia and prevention of depression. In this study, 31 subjects with insomnia symptoms as measured by the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HAMD-17) and 71 age- and gender-matched subjects without insomnia symptoms were recruited to participate in a clinical trial. Using resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI), we examined the alterations in spontaneous brain activity between the two groups. Correlations between the fractional amplitude of low frequency fluctuations (fALFF) and clinical measurements (e.g., insomnia severity and Hamilton Depression Rating Scale [HAMD] scores) were also tested in all subjects. Compared to healthy participants without insomnia symptoms, participants with insomnia symptoms showed a decreased fALFF in the left ventral anterior insula, bilateral posterior insula, left thalamus, and pons but an increased fALFF in the bilateral middle occipital gyrus and right precentral gyrus. More specifically, a significant, negative correlation of fALFF in the left thalamus with early morning awakening scores and HAMD scores in the overall sample was identified. These results suggest that insomnia symptoms are associated with altered spontaneous activity in the brain regions of several important functional networks, including the insular cortex of the salience and the thalamus of the hyperarousal network. The altered fALFF in the left thalamus supports the "hyperarousal theory" of insomnia symptoms, which could serve as a biomarker for insomnia. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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.
Pesaran, B; Sahami, M; Mitra, P; Andersen, R A
A number of cortical structures are reported to have elevated single unit firing rates sustained throughout the memory period of a working memory task. How the nervous system forms and maintains these memories is unknown but reverberating neuronal network activity is thought to be important. We studied the temporal structure of single unit (SU) activity and simultaneously recorded local field potential (LFP) activity from area LIP in the inferior parietal lobe of two awake macaques during a memory-saccade task. Using multitaper techniques for spectral analysis, which play an important role in obtaining the present results, we find elevations in spectral power in a 50--90 Hz (gamma) frequency band during the memory period in both SU and LFP activity. The activity is tuned to the direction of the saccade providing evidence for temporal structure that codes for movement plans during working memory. We also find SU and LFP activity are coherent during the memory period in the 50--90 Hz gamma band and no consisten...
Full Text Available Early exercise is an effective strategy for stroke treatment, but the underlying mechanism remains poorly understood. Apoptosis plays a critical role after stroke. However, it is unclear whether early exercise inhibits apoptosis after stroke. The present study investigated the effect of early exercise on apoptosis induced by ischemia. Adult SD rats were subjected to transient focal cerebral ischemia by middle cerebral artery occlusion model (MCAO and were randomly divided into early exercise group, non-exercise group and sham group. Early exercise group received forced treadmill training initiated at 24 h after operation. Fourteen days later, the cell apoptosis were detected by TdT-mediated dUTP-biotin nick-end labeling (TUNEL and Fluoro-Jade-B staining (F-J-B. Caspase-3, cleaved caspase-3 and Bcl-2 were determined by western blotting. Cerebral infarct volume and motor function were evaluated by cresyl violet staining and foot fault test respectively. The results showed that early exercise decreased the number of apoptotic cells (118.74 ± 6.15 vs. 169.65 ± 8.47, p < 0.05, n = 5, inhibited the expression of caspase-3 and cleaved caspase-3 (p < 0.05, n = 5, and increased the expression of Bcl-2 (p < 0.05, n = 5. These data were consistent with reduced infarct volume and improved motor function. These results suggested that early exercise could provide neuroprotection through inhibiting neuron apoptosis.
Díez-García, Andrea; Barros-Zulaica, Natali; Núñez, Ángel; Buño, Washington; Fernández de Sevilla, David
According to Hebb's original hypothesis (Hebb, 1949), synapses are reinforced when presynaptic activity triggers postsynaptic firing, resulting in long-term potentiation (LTP) of synaptic efficacy. Long-term depression (LTD) is a use-dependent decrease in synaptic strength that is thought to be due to synaptic input causing a weak postsynaptic effect. Although the mechanisms that mediate long-term synaptic plasticity have been investigated for at least three decades not all question have as yet been answered. Therefore, we aimed at determining the mechanisms that generate LTP or LTD with the simplest possible protocol. Low-frequency stimulation of basal dendrite inputs in Layer 5 pyramidal neurons of the rat barrel cortex induces LTP. This stimulation triggered an EPSP, an action potential (AP) burst, and a Ca 2+ spike. The same stimulation induced LTD following manipulations that reduced the Ca 2+ spike and Ca 2+ signal or the AP burst. Low-frequency whisker deflections induced similar bidirectional plasticity of action potential evoked responses in anesthetized rats. These results suggest that both in vitro and in vivo similar mechanisms regulate the balance between LTP and LTD. This simple induction form of bidirectional hebbian plasticity could be present in the natural conditions to regulate the detection, flow, and storage of sensorimotor information.
Díez-García, Andrea; Barros-Zulaica, Natali; Núñez, Ángel; Buño, Washington; Fernández de Sevilla, David
According to Hebb's original hypothesis (Hebb, 1949), synapses are reinforced when presynaptic activity triggers postsynaptic firing, resulting in long-term potentiation (LTP) of synaptic efficacy. Long-term depression (LTD) is a use-dependent decrease in synaptic strength that is thought to be due to synaptic input causing a weak postsynaptic effect. Although the mechanisms that mediate long-term synaptic plasticity have been investigated for at least three decades not all question have as yet been answered. Therefore, we aimed at determining the mechanisms that generate LTP or LTD with the simplest possible protocol. Low-frequency stimulation of basal dendrite inputs in Layer 5 pyramidal neurons of the rat barrel cortex induces LTP. This stimulation triggered an EPSP, an action potential (AP) burst, and a Ca2+ spike. The same stimulation induced LTD following manipulations that reduced the Ca2+ spike and Ca2+ signal or the AP burst. Low-frequency whisker deflections induced similar bidirectional plasticity of action potential evoked responses in anesthetized rats. These results suggest that both in vitro and in vivo similar mechanisms regulate the balance between LTP and LTD. This simple induction form of bidirectional hebbian plasticity could be present in the natural conditions to regulate the detection, flow, and storage of sensorimotor information. PMID:28203145
Kida, Hiroyuki; Tsuda, Yasumasa; Ito, Nana; Yamamoto, Yui; Owada, Yuji; Kamiya, Yoshinori; Mitsushima, Dai
Motor skill training induces structural plasticity at dendritic spines in the primary motor cortex (M1). To further analyze both synaptic and intrinsic plasticity in the layer II/III area of M1, we subjected rats to a rotor rod test and then prepared acute brain slices. Motor skill consistently improved within 2 days of training. Voltage clamp analysis showed significantly higher α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid/N-methyl-d-aspartate (AMPA/NMDA) ratios and miniature EPSC amplitudes in 1-day trained rats compared with untrained rats, suggesting increased postsynaptic AMPA receptors in the early phase of motor learning. Compared with untrained controls, 2-days trained rats showed significantly higher miniature EPSC amplitude and frequency. Paired-pulse analysis further demonstrated lower rates in 2-days trained rats, suggesting increased presynaptic glutamate release during the late phase of learning. One-day trained rats showed decreased miniature IPSC frequency and increased paired-pulse analysis of evoked IPSC, suggesting a transient decrease in presynaptic γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) release. Moreover, current clamp analysis revealed lower resting membrane potential, higher spike threshold, and deeper afterhyperpolarization in 1-day trained rats-while 2-days trained rats showed higher membrane potential, suggesting dynamic changes in intrinsic properties. Our present results indicate dynamic changes in glutamatergic, GABAergic, and intrinsic plasticity in M1 layer II/III neurons after the motor training. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press.
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.
The human cerebral cortex is neither one nor many: Neuronal distribution reveals two quantitatively different zones in the grey matter, three in the white matter, and explains local variations in cortical folding
Pedro F. M. Ribeiro
Full Text Available The human prefrontal cortex has been considered different in several aspects and relatively enlarged compared to the rest of the cortical areas. Here we determine whether the white and gray matter of the prefrontal portion of the human cerebral cortex have similar or different cellular compositions relative to the rest of the cortical regions by applying the Isotropic Fractionator to analyze the distribution of neurons along the entire anteroposterior axis of the cortex, and its relationship with the degree of gyrification, number of neurons under the cortical surface, and other parameters. The prefrontal region shares with the remainder of the cerebral cortex (except for occipital cortex the same relationship between cortical volume and number of neurons. In contrast, both occipital and prefrontal areas vary from other cortical areas in their connectivity through the white matter, with a systematic reduction of cortical connectivity through the white matter and an increase of the mean axon caliber along the anteroposterior axis. These two parameters explain local differences in the distribution of neurons underneath the cortical surface. We also show that local variations in cortical folding are neither a function of local numbers of neurons nor of cortical thickness, but correlate with properties of the white matter, and are best explained by the folding of the white matter surface. Our results suggest that the human cerebral cortex is divided in two zones (occipital and non-occipital that differ in how neurons distributed across their grey matter volume and in three zones (prefrontal, occipital, and non-occipital that differ in how neurons are connected through the white matter. Thus, the human prefrontal cortex has the largest fraction of neuronal connectivity through the white matter and the smallest average axonal caliber in the white matter within the cortex, although its neuronal composition fits the pattern found for other, non
Yonezawa, Satoshi; Shigematsu, Momoko; Hirata, Kazuto; Hayashi, Kensuke
It has been recently reported that the centrosome of neurons does not have microtubule nucleating activity. Microtubule nucleation requires γ-tubulin as well as its recruiting proteins, GCP-WD/NEDD1 and CDK5RAP2 that anchor γ-tubulin to the centrosome. Change in the localization of these proteins during in vivo development of brain, however, has not been well examined. In this study we investigate the localization of γ-tubulin, GCP-WD and CDK5RAP2 in developing cerebral and cerebellar cortex with immunofluorescence. We found that γ-tubulin and its recruiting proteins were localized at centrosomes of immature neurons, while they were lost at centrosomes in mature neurons. This indicated that the loss of microtubule nucleating activity at the centrosome of neurons is due to the loss of γ-tubulin-recruiting proteins from the centrosome. RT-PCR analysis revealed that these proteins are still expressed after birth, suggesting that they have a role in microtubule generation in cell body and dendrites of mature neurons. Microtubule regrowth experiments on cultured mature neurons showed that microtubules are nucleated not at the centrosome but within dendrites. These data indicated the translocation of microtubule-organizing activity from the centrosome to dendrites during maturation of neurons, which would explain the mixed polarity of microtubules in dendrites
Burton, H; Sinclair, R J
Clinical and neuroimaging observations of the cortical network implicated in tactile attention have identified foci in parietal somatosensory, posterior parietal, and superior frontal locations. Tasks involving intentional hand-arm movements activate similar or nearby parietal and frontal foci. Visual spatial attention tasks and deliberate visuomotor behavior also activate overlapping posterior parietal and frontal foci. Studies in the visual and somatosensory systems thus support a proposal that attention to the spatial location of an object engages cortical regions responsible for the same coordinate referents used for guiding purposeful motor behavior. Tactile attention also biases processing in the somatosensory cortex through amplification of responses to relevant features of selected stimuli. Psychophysical studies demonstrate retention gradients for tactile stimuli like those reported for visual and auditory stimuli, and suggest analogous neural mechanisms for working memory across modalities. Neuroimaging studies in humans using memory tasks, and anatomic studies in monkeys support the idea that tactile information relayed from the somatosensory cortex is directed ventrally through the insula to the frontal cortex for short-term retention and to structures of the medial temporal lobe for long-term encoding. At the level of single neurons, tactile (such as visual and auditory) short-term memory appears as a persistent response during delay intervals between sampled stimuli.
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...
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.
Wong-Riley, M T; Trusk, T C; Kaboord, W; Huang, Z
One of the hallmarks of the primate striate cortex is the presence of cytochrome oxidase-rich puffs in its supragranular layers. Neurons in puffs have been classified as type A, B, and C in ascending order of cytochrome oxidase content, with type C cells being the most vulnerable to retinal impulse blockade. The present study aimed at analysing cytochrome oxidase-poor interpuffs with reference to their metabolic cell types and the effect of intraretinal tetrodotoxin treatment. The same three metabolic types were found in interpuffs, except that type B and C neurons were smaller and less cytochrome oxidase-reactive in interpuffs than in puffs. Type A neurons had small perikarya, low levels of cytochrome oxidase, and received exclusively symmetric axosomatic synapses. The largest neurons were pyramidal, type B cells with moderate cytochrome oxidase activity and were also contacted exclusively by symmetric axosomatic synapses. Type C cells medium-sized with a rich supply of large, darkly reactive mitochondria and possessed all the characteristics of GABAergic neurons. They were the only cell type that received both symmetric and asymmetric axosomatic synapses. Two weeks of monocular tetrodotoxin blockade in adult monkeys caused all three major cell types in deprived interpuffs to suffer a significant downward shift in the size and cytochrome oxidase reactivity of their mitochondria, but the effects were more severe in type B and C neurons. In nondeprived interpuffs, all three cell types gained both in size and absolute number of mitochondria, and type A cells also had an elevated level of cytochrome oxidase, indicating that they might be functioning at a competitive advantage over cells in deprived columns. However, type B and C neurons showed a net loss of darkly reactive mitochondria, indicating that these cells became less active. Thus, mature interpuff neurons remained vulnerable to retinal impulse blockade and the metabolic capacity of these cells remains tightly
Full Text Available Preliminary evidence suggests that peripheral facial nerve injuries are associated with sensorimotor cortex reorganization. We have characterized facial nerve lesion-induced structural changes in primary motor cortex layer 5 pyramidal neurons and their relationship with glial cell density using a rodent facial paralysis model. First, we used adult transgenic mice expressing green fluorescent protein in microglia and yellow fluorescent protein in pyramidal neurons which were subjected to either unilateral lesion of the facial nerve or sham surgery. Two-photon excitation microscopy was then used for evaluating both layer 5 pyramidal neurons and microglia in vibrissal primary motor cortex (vM1. It was found that facial nerve lesion induced long-lasting changes in dendritic morphology of vM1 layer 5 pyramidal neurons and in their surrounding microglia. Pyramidal cells’ dendritic arborization underwent overall shrinkage and transient spine pruning. Moreover, microglial cell density surrounding vM1 layer 5 pyramidal neurons was significantly increased with morphological bias towards the activated phenotype. Additionally, we induced facial nerve lesion in Wistar rats to evaluate the degree and extension of facial nerve lesion-induced reorganization processes in central nervous system using neuronal and glial markers. Immunoreactivity to NeuN (neuronal nuclei antigen, GAP-43 (growth-associated protein 43, GFAP (glial fibrillary acidic protein, and Iba 1 (Ionized calcium binding adaptor molecule 1 were evaluated 1, 3, 7, 14, 28 and 35 days after either unilateral facial nerve lesion or sham surgery. Patches of decreased NeuN immunoreactivity were found bilaterally in vM1 as well as in primary somatosensory cortex (CxS1. Significantly increased GAP-43 immunoreactivity was found bilaterally after the lesion in hippocampus, striatum, and sensorimotor cortex. One day after lesion GFAP immunoreactivity increased bilaterally in hippocampus, subcortical white
Kaneko, Hidekazu; Tamura, Hiroshi; Tate, Shunta; Kawashima, Takahiro; Suzuki, Shinya S; Fujita, Ichiro
In order for patients with disabilities to control assistive devices with their own neural activity, multineuronal spike trains must be efficiently decoded because only limited computational resources can be used to generate prosthetic control signals in portable real-time applications. In this study, we compare the abilities of two vectorizing procedures (multineuronal and time-segmental) to extract information from spike trains during the same total neuron-seconds. In the multineuronal vectorizing procedure, we defined a response vector whose components represented the spike counts of one to five neurons. In the time-segmental vectorizing procedure, a response vector consisted of components representing a neuron's spike counts for one to five time-segment(s) of a response period of 1 s. Spike trains were recorded from neurons in the inferior temporal cortex of monkeys presented with visual stimuli. We examined whether the amount of information of the visual stimuli carried by these neurons differed between the two vectorizing procedures. The amount of information calculated with the multineuronal vectorizing procedure, but not the time-segmental vectorizing procedure, significantly increased with the dimensions of the response vector. We conclude that the multineuronal vectorizing procedure is superior to the time-segmental vectorizing procedure in efficiently extracting information from neuronal signals. Copyright (c) 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Insel, Nathan; Barnes, Carol A.
The medial prefrontal cortex is thought to be important for guiding behavior according to an animal's expectations. Efforts to decode the region have focused not only on the question of what information it computes, but also how distinct circuit components become engaged during behavior. We find that the activity of regular-firing, putative projection neurons contains rich information about behavioral context and firing fields cluster around reward sites, while activity among putative inhibitory and fast-spiking neurons is most associated with movement and accompanying sensory stimulation. These dissociations were observed even between adjacent neurons with apparently reciprocal, inhibitory–excitatory connections. A smaller population of projection neurons with burst-firing patterns did not show clustered firing fields around rewards; these neurons, although heterogeneous, were generally less selective for behavioral context than regular-firing cells. The data suggest a network that tracks an animal's behavioral situation while, at the same time, regulating excitation levels to emphasize high valued positions. In this scenario, the function of fast-spiking inhibitory neurons is to constrain network output relative to incoming sensory flow. This scheme could serve as a bridge between abstract sensorimotor information and single-dimensional codes for value, providing a neural framework to generate expectations from behavioral state. PMID:24700585
Full Text Available During development, sensory systems switch from an immature to an adult mode of function along with the emergence of the active cortical states. Here, we used patch-clamp recordings from neocortical slices in vitro to characterize the developmental changes in the basic electrophysiological properties of excitatory L4 neurons and their connectivity before and after the developmental switch, which occurs in the rat barrel cortex in vivo at postnatal day P8. Prior to the switch, L4 neurons had lower resting membrane potentials, higher input resistance, lower membrane capacity, as well as action potentials (APs with smaller amplitudes, longer durations and higher AP thresholds compared to the neurons after the switch. A sustained firing pattern also emerged around the switch. Dual patch-clamp recordings from L4 neurons revealed that recurrent connections between L4 excitatory cells do not exist before and develop rapidly across the switch. In contrast, electrical coupling between these neurons waned around the switch. We suggest that maturation of electrophysiological features, particularly acquisition of a sustained firing pattern, and a transition from the immature electrical to mature chemical synaptic coupling between excitatory L4 neurons, contributes to the developmental switch in the cortical mode of function.
Hutchins, B Ian; Wray, Susan
Microtubules are a critical part of neuronal polarity and leading process extension, thus microtubule movement plays an important role in neuronal migration. However, the dynamics of microtubules during the forward movement of the nucleus into the leading process (nucleokinesis) is unclear and may be dependent on the cell type and mode of migration used. In particular, little is known about cytoskeletal changes during axophilic migration, commonly used in anteroposterior neuronal migration. We recently showed that leading process actin flow in migrating GnRH neurons is controlled by a signaling cascade involving IP3 receptors, CaMKK, AMPK, and RhoA. In the present study, microtubule dynamics were examined in GnRH neurons. Failure of the migration of these cells leads to the neuroendocrine disorder Kallmann Syndrome. Microtubules translocated forward along the leading process shaft during migration, but reversed direction and moved toward the nucleus when migration stalled. Blocking calcium release through IP3 receptors halted migration and induced the same reversal of microtubule translocation, while blocking cortical actin flow prevented microtubules from translocating toward the distal leading process. Super-resolution imaging revealed that microtubule plus-end tips are captured at the actin cortex through calcium-dependent mechanisms. This work shows that cortical actin flow draws the microtubule network forward through calcium-dependent capture in order to promote nucleokinesis, revealing a novel mechanism engaged by migrating neurons to facilitate movement.
Huang, Rong-Rong; Hu, Wen; Yin, Yan-Yan; Wang, Yu-Chan; Li, Wei-Ping; Li, Wei-Zu
Chronic stress has been implicated in many types of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease (AD). In our previous study, we demonstrated that chronic restraint stress (CRS) induced reactive oxygen species (ROS) overproduction and oxidative damage in the frontal cortex and hippocampus in mice. In the present study, we investigated the effects of CRS (over a period of 8 weeks) on learning and memory impairment and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress in the frontal cortex and hippocampus in male mice. The Morris water maze was used to investigate the effects of CRS on learning and memory impairment. Immunohistochemistry and immunoblot analysis were also used to determine the expression levels of protein kinase C α (PKCα), 78 kDa glucose-regulated protein (GRP78), C/EBP-homologous protein (CHOP) and mesencephalic astrocyte-derived neurotrophic factor (MANF). The results revealed that CRS significantly accelerated learning and memory impairment, and induced neuronal damage in the frontal cortex and hippocampus CA1 region. Moreover, CRS significantly increased the expression of PKCα, CHOP and MANF, and decreased that of GRP78 in the frontal cortex and hippocampus. Our data suggest that exposure to CRS (for 8 weeks) significantly accelerates learning and memory impairment, and the mechanisms involved may be related to ER stress in the frontal cortex and hippocampus.
Wang, Yan; Wu, Wei; Zhang, Xian; Hu, Xu; Li, Yue; Lou, Shihao; Ma, Xiao; An, Xu; Liu, Hui; Peng, Jing; Ma, Danyi; Zhou, Yifeng; Yang, Yupeng
Visual perceptual learning (VPL) can improve spatial vision in normally sighted and visually impaired individuals. Although previous studies of humans and large animals have explored the neural basis of VPL, elucidation of the underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms remains a challenge. Owing to the advantages of molecular genetic and optogenetic manipulations, the mouse is a promising model for providing a mechanistic understanding of VPL. Here, we thoroughly evaluated the effects and properties of VPL on spatial vision in C57BL/6J mice using a two-alternative, forced-choice visual water task. Briefly, the mice underwent prolonged training at near the individual threshold of contrast or spatial frequency (SF) for pattern discrimination or visual detection for 35 consecutive days. Following training, the contrast-threshold trained mice showed an 87% improvement in contrast sensitivity (CS) and a 55% gain in visual acuity (VA). Similarly, the SF-threshold trained mice exhibited comparable and long-lasting improvements in VA and significant gains in CS over a wide range of SFs. Furthermore, learning largely transferred across eyes and stimulus orientations. Interestingly, learning could transfer from a pattern discrimination task to a visual detection task, but not vice versa. We validated that this VPL fully restored VA in adult amblyopic mice and old mice. Taken together, these data indicate that mice, as a species, exhibit reliable VPL. Intrinsic signal optical imaging revealed that mice with perceptual training had higher cut-off SFs in primary visual cortex (V1) than those without perceptual training. Moreover, perceptual training induced an increase in the dendritic spine density in layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons of V1. These results indicated functional and structural alterations in V1 during VPL. Overall, our VPL mouse model will provide a platform for investigating the neurobiological basis of VPL.
Full Text Available Visual perceptual learning (VPL can improve spatial vision in normally sighted and visually impaired individuals. Although previous studies of humans and large animals have explored the neural basis of VPL, elucidation of the underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms remains a challenge. Owing to the advantages of molecular genetic and optogenetic manipulations, the mouse is a promising model for providing a mechanistic understanding of VPL. Here, we thoroughly evaluated the effects and properties of VPL on spatial vision in C57BL/6J mice using a two-alternative, forced-choice visual water task. Briefly, the mice underwent prolonged training at near the individual threshold of contrast or spatial frequency (SF for pattern discrimination or visual detection for 35 consecutive days. Following training, the contrast-threshold trained mice showed an 87% improvement in contrast sensitivity (CS and a 55% gain in visual acuity (VA. Similarly, the SF-threshold trained mice exhibited comparable and long-lasting improvements in VA and significant gains in CS over a wide range of SFs. Furthermore, learning largely transferred across eyes and stimulus orientations. Interestingly, learning could transfer from a pattern discrimination task to a visual detection task, but not vice versa. We validated that this VPL fully restored VA in adult amblyopic mice and old mice. Taken together, these data indicate that mice, as a species, exhibit reliable VPL. Intrinsic signal optical imaging revealed that mice with perceptual training had higher cut-off SFs in primary visual cortex (V1 than those without perceptual training. Moreover, perceptual training induced an increase in the dendritic spine density in layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons of V1. These results indicated functional and structural alterations in V1 during VPL. Overall, our VPL mouse model will provide a platform for investigating the neurobiological basis of VPL.
Huang, Ying; Brosch, Michael
Prefrontal cortex (PFC) has been documented to play critical roles in goal-directed behaviors, like representing goal-relevant events and working memory (WM). However, neurophysiological evidence for such roles of PFC has been obtained mainly with visual tasks but rarely with auditory tasks. In the present study, we tested roles of PFC in auditory goal-directed behaviors by recording local field potentials in the auditory region of left ventrolateral PFC while a monkey performed auditory WM tasks. The tasks consisted of multiple events and required the monkey to change its mental states to achieve the reward. The events were auditory and visual stimuli, as well as specific actions. Mental states were engaging in the tasks and holding task-relevant information in auditory WM. We found that, although based on recordings from one hemisphere in one monkey only, PFC represented multiple events that were important for achieving reward, including auditory and visual stimuli like turning on and off an LED, as well as bar touch. The responses to auditory events depended on the tasks and on the context of the tasks. This provides support for the idea that neuronal representations in PFC are flexible and can be related to the behavioral meaning of stimuli. We also found that engaging in the tasks and holding information in auditory WM were associated with persistent changes of slow potentials, both of which are essential for auditory goal-directed behaviors. Our study, on a single hemisphere in a single monkey, reveals roles of PFC in auditory goal-directed behaviors similar to those in visual goal-directed behaviors, suggesting that functions of PFC in goal-directed behaviors are probably common across the auditory and visual modality. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled SI: Auditory working memory. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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.
Fanselow, Erika E.; Simons, Daniel J.
The functional role of input from the primary motor cortex (M1) to primary somatosensory cortex (S1) is unclear; one key to understanding this pathway may lie in elucidating the cell-type specific microcircuits that connect S1 and M1. Recently, we discovered that a subset of pyramidal neurons in the infragranular layers of S1 receive especially strong input from M1 (Kinnischtzke AK, Simons DJ, Fanselow EE. Cereb Cortex 24: 2237–2248, 2014), suggesting that M1 may affect specific classes of pyramidal neurons differently. Here, using combined optogenetic and retrograde labeling approaches in the mouse, we examined the strengths of M1 inputs to five classes of infragranular S1 neurons categorized by their projections to particular cortical and subcortical targets. We found that the magnitude of M1 synaptic input to S1 pyramidal neurons varies greatly depending on the projection target of the postsynaptic neuron. Of the populations examined, M1-projecting corticocortical neurons in L6 received the strongest M1 inputs, whereas ventral posterior medial nucleus-projecting corticothalamic neurons, also located in L6, received the weakest. Each population also possessed distinct intrinsic properties. The results suggest that M1 differentially engages specific classes of S1 projection neurons, thereby regulating the motor-related influence S1 exerts over subcortical structures. PMID:27334960
Chen, Y C; Huang, F D; Chen, N H; Shou, J Y; Wu, L
In the last 2-3 decades the role of the premotor cortex (PM) of monkey in memorized spatial sequential (MSS) movements has been amply investigated. However, it is as yet not known whether PM participates in the movement sequence behaviour guided by recognition of visual figures (i.e. the figure-recognition sequence, FRS). In the present work three monkeys were trained to perform both FRS and MSS tasks. Postmortem examination showed that 202 cells were in the dorso-lateral premotor cortex. Among 111 cells recorded during the two tasks, more than 50% changed their activity during the cue periods in either task. During the response period, the ratios of cells with changes of firing rate in both FRS and MSS were high and roughly equal to each other, while during the image period, the proportion in the FRS (83.7%) was significantly higher than that in the MSS (66.7%). Comparison of neuronal activities during same motor sequence of two different tasks showed that during the image periods PM neuronal activities were more closely related to the FRS task, while during the cue periods no difference could be found. Analysis of cell responses showed that the neurons with longer latency were much more in MSS than in FRS in either cue or image period. The present results indicate that the premotor cortex participates in FRS motor sequence as well as in MSS and suggest that the dorso-lateral PM represents another subarea in function shared by both FRS and MSS tasks. However, in view of the differences of PM neuronal responses in cue or image periods of FRS and MSS tasks, it seems likely that neural networks involved in FRS and MSS tasks are different.
Troy Michael Herter
Full Text Available Primary motor cortex (M1 and red nucleus (RN are brain regions involved in limb motor control. Both structures are highly interconnected with the cerebellum and project directly to the spinal cord, although the contribution of RN is smaller than M1. It remains uncertain whether RN and M1 serve similar or distinct roles during posture and movement. Many neurons in M1 respond rapidly to mechanical disturbances of the limb, but it remains unclear whether RN neurons also respond to such limb perturbations. We have compared discharges of single neurons in RN (n = 49 and M1 (n = 109 of one monkey during a postural perturbation task. Neural responses to whole-limb perturbations were examined by transiently applying (300 ms flexor or extensor torques to the shoulder and/or elbow while the monkeys attempted to maintain a static hand posture. Relative to baseline discharges before perturbation onset, perturbations evoked rapid (<100 ms changes of neural discharges in many RN (28 of 49, 57% and M1 (43 of 109, 39% neurons. In addition to exhibiting a greater proportion of perturbation-related neurons, RN neurons also tended to exhibit higher peak discharge frequencies in response to perturbations than M1 neurons. Importantly, neurons in both structures exhibited similar response latencies and tuning properties (preferred torque directions and tuning widths in joint-torque space. Proximal arm muscles also displayed similar tuning properties in joint-torque space. These results suggest that RN is more sensitive than M1 to mechanical perturbations applied during postural control but both structures may play a similar role in feedback control of posture.
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.
Kodama, Nathan X; Feng, Tianyi; Ullett, James J; Chiel, Hillel J; Sivakumar, Siddharth S; Galán, Roberto F
In the highly interconnected architectures of the cerebral cortex, recurrent intracortical loops disproportionately outnumber thalamo-cortical inputs. These networks are also capable of generating neuronal activity without feedforward sensory drive. It is unknown, however, what spatiotemporal patterns may be solely attributed to intrinsic connections of the local cortical network. Using high-density microelectrode arrays, here we show that in the isolated, primary somatosensory cortex of mice, neuronal firing fluctuates on timescales from milliseconds to tens of seconds. Slower firing fluctuations reveal two spatially distinct neuronal ensembles, which correspond to superficial and deeper layers. These ensembles are anti-correlated: when one fires more, the other fires less and vice versa. This interplay is clearest at timescales of several seconds and is therefore consistent with shifts between active sensing and anticipatory behavioral states in mice.
Full Text Available Although the relationship between color signal and luminance signal is an important problem in visual perception, relatively little is known about how the luminance contrast affects the responses of color selective neurons in the visual cortex. In this study, we examined this problem in the inferior temporal (IT of the awake monkey performing a visual fixation task. Single neuron activities were recorded from the anterior and posterior color selective regions in IT cortex (AITC and PITC identified in previous studies where color selective neurons are accumulated. Color stimuli consisted of 28 stimuli that evenly distribute across the gamut of the CRT display defined on the CIE- xychromaticity diagram at two different luminance levels (5 cd/m 2or 20 cd/m 2 and 2 stimuli at white points. The background was maintained at 10 cd/m 2gray. We found that the effect of luminance contrast on the color selectivity was markedly different between AITC and PITC. When we examined the correlation between the responses to the bright stimuli and those to the dark stimuli with the same chromaticity coordinates, most AITC neurons exhibited high correlation whereas many PITC neurons showed no correlation or only weak correlation. In PITC, the effect was specifically large for neutral colors (white, gray, black and for colors with low saturation. These results indicate that the effect of luminance contrast on the color selective responses differs across different areas and suggest that the separation between color signal and luminance signal involves a higher stage of the cortical color processing.
Full Text Available The prefrontal cortex has been extensively implicated in autism to explain deficits in executive and other higher-order functions related to cognition, language, sociability and emotion. The possible changes at the level of the neuronal microcircuit are however not known. We studied microcircuit alterations in the prefrontal cortex in the valproic acid rat model of autism and found that the layer 5 pyramidal neurons are connected to significantly more neighbouring neurons than in controls. These excitatory connections are more plastic displaying enhanced long-term potentiation of the strength of synapses. The microcircuit alterations found in the prefrontal cortex are therefore similar to the alterations previously found in the somatosensory cortex. Hyper-connectivity and hyper-plasticity in the prefrontal cortex implies hyper-functionality of one of the highest order processing regions in the brain, and stands in contrast to the hypo-functionality that is normally proposed in this region to explain some of the autistic symptoms. We propose that a number of deficits in autism such as sociability, attention, multi-tasking and repetitive behaviours, should be re-interpreted in the light of a hyper-functional prefrontal cortex.
Song, Chenghui; Ehlers, Vanessa L; Moyer, James R
Neuronal activity in medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) is critical for the formation of trace fear memory, yet the cellular mechanisms underlying these memories remain unclear. One possibility involves the modulation of intrinsic excitability within mPFC neurons that project to the basolateral complex of amygdala (BLA). The current study used a combination of retrograde labeling and in vitro whole-cell patch-clamp recordings to examine the effect of trace fear conditioning on the intrinsic excitability of layer 5 mPFC-BLA projection neurons in adult rats. Trace fear conditioning significantly enhanced the intrinsic excitability of regular spiking infralimbic (IL) projection neurons, as evidenced by an increase in the number of action potentials after current injection. These changes were also associated with a reduction in spike threshold and an increase in h current. In contrast, trace fear conditioning reduced the excitability of regular spiking prelimbic (PL) projection neurons, through a learning-related decrease of input resistance. Interestingly, the amount of conditioned freezing was (1) positively correlated with excitability of IL-BLA projection neurons after conditioning and (2) negatively correlated with excitability of PL-BLA projection neurons after extinction. Trace fear conditioning also significantly enhanced the excitability of burst spiking PL-BLA projection neurons. In both regions, conditioning-induced plasticity was learning specific (observed in conditioned but not in pseudoconditioned rats), flexible (reversed by extinction), and transient (lasted extinction of trace fear conditioning. Significance statement: Frontal lobe-related function is vital for a variety of important behaviors, some of which decline during aging. This study involves a novel combination of electrophysiological recordings from fluorescently labeled mPFC-to-amygdala projection neurons in rats with acquisition and extinction of trace fear conditioning to determine how
de Araujo, Ivan E; Geha, Paul; Small, Dana M
The gustatory aspect of the insular cortex is part of the brain circuit that controls ingestive behaviors based on chemosensory inputs. However, the sensory properties of foods are not restricted to taste and should also include salient features such as odor, texture, temperature, and appearance. Therefore, it is reasonable to hypothesize that specialized circuits within the central taste pathways must be involved in representing several other oral sensory modalities in addition to taste. In this review, we evaluate current evidence indicating that the insular gustatory cortex functions as an integrative circuit, with taste-responsive regions also showing heightened sensitivity to olfactory, somatosensory, and even visual stimulation. We also review evidence for modulation of taste-responsive insular areas by changes in physiological state, with taste-elicited neuronal responses varying according to the nutritional state of the organism. We then examine experimental support for a functional map within the insular cortex that might reflect the various sensory and homeostatic roles associated with this region. Finally, we evaluate the potential role of the taste insular cortex in weight-gain susceptibility. Taken together, the current experimental evidence favors the view that the insular gustatory cortex functions as an orosensory integrative system that not only enables the formation of complex flavor representations but also mediates their modulation by the internal state of the body, playing therefore a central role in food intake regulation.
Haberly, L.B.; Hansen, D.J.; Feig, S.L.; Presto, S.
GABAergic neurons have been identified in the piriform cortex of the opossum at light and electron microscopic levels by immunocytochemical localization of GABA and the GABA-synthesizing enzyme glutamic acid decarboxylase and by autoradiographic visualization of high-affinity 3 H-GABA uptake. Four major neuron populations have been distinguished on the basis of soma size, shape, and segregation at specific depths and locations: large horizontal cells in layer Ia of the anterior piriform cortex, small globular cells with thin dendrites concentrated in layers Ib and II of the posterior piriform cortex, and multipolar and fusiform cells concentrated in the deep part of layer III in anterior and posterior parts of the piriform cortex and the subjacent endopiriform nucleus. All four populations were well visualized with both antisera, but the large layer Ia horizontal cells displayed only very light 3 H-GABA uptake, thus suggesting a lack of local axon collaterals or lack of high-affinity GABA uptake sites. The large, ultrastructurally distinctive somata of layer Ia horizontal cells receive a very small number of symmetrical synapses; the thin, axonlike dendrites of small globular cells are exclusively postsynaptic and receive large numbers of both symmetrical and asymmetrical synapses, in contrast to somata which receive a small number of both types; and the deep multipolar and fusiform cells receive a highly variable number of symmetrical and asymmetrical synapses on somata and proximal dendrites. Labeled puncta of axon terminal dimensions were found in large numbers in the neuropil surrounding pyramidal cell somata in layer II and in the endopiriform nucleus. Moderately large numbers of labeled puncta were found in layer I at the depth of pyramidal cell apical dendrites with greater numbers in layer Ia at the depth of distal apical segments than in layer Ib
Zhang, Wen; Peterson, Matthew; Beyer, Barbara; Frankel, Wayne N.
Mutations of MECP2 cause Rett syndrome (RTT), a neurodevelopmental disorder leading to loss of motor and cognitive functions, impaired social interactions, and seizure at young ages. Defects of neuronal circuit development and function are thought to be responsible for the symptoms of RTT. The majority of RTT patients show recurrent seizures, indicating that neuronal hyperexcitation is a common feature of RTT. However, mechanisms underlying hyperexcitation in RTT are poorly understood. Here we show that deletion of Mecp2 from cortical excitatory neurons but not forebrain inhibitory neurons in the mouse leads to spontaneous seizures. Selective deletion of Mecp2 from excitatory but not inhibitory neurons in the forebrain reduces GABAergic transmission in layer 5 pyramidal neurons in the prefrontal and somatosensory cortices. Loss of MeCP2 from cortical excitatory neurons reduces the number of GABAergic synapses in the cortex, and enhances the excitability of layer 5 pyramidal neurons. Using single-cell deletion of Mecp2 in layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons, we show that GABAergic transmission is reduced in neurons without MeCP2, but is normal in neighboring neurons with MeCP2. Together, these results suggest that MeCP2 in cortical excitatory neurons plays a critical role in the regulation of GABAergic transmission and cortical excitability. PMID:24523563
Lenschow, Constanze; Copley, Sean; Gardiner, Jayne M; Talbot, Zoe N; Vitenzon, Ariel; Brecht, Michael
Mammalian external genitals show sexual dimorphism [1, 2] and can change size and shape upon sexual arousal. Genitals feature prominently in the oldest pieces of figural art  and phallic depictions of penises informed psychoanalytic thought about sexuality [4, 5]. Despite this longstanding interest, the neural representations of genitals are still poorly understood . In somatosensory cortex specifically, many studies did not detect any cortical representation of genitals [7-9]. Studies in humans debate whether genitals are represented displaced below the foot of the cortical body map [10-12] or whether they are represented somatotopically [13-15]. We wondered what a high-resolution mapping of genital representations might tell us about the sexual differentiation of the mammalian brain. We identified genital responses in rat somatosensory cortex in a region previously assigned as arm/leg cortex. Genital responses were more common in males than in females. Despite such response dimorphism, we observed a stunning anatomical monomorphism of cortical penis and clitoris input maps revealed by cytochrome-oxidase-staining of cortical layer 4. Genital representations were somatotopic and bilaterally symmetric, and their relative size increased markedly during puberty. Size, shape, and erect posture give the cortical penis representation a phallic appearance pointing to a role in sexually aroused states. Cortical genital neurons showed unusual multi-body-part responses and sexually dimorphic receptive fields. Specifically, genital neurons were co-activated by distant body regions, which are touched during mounting in the respective sex. Genital maps indicate a deep homology of penis and clitoris representations in line with a fundamentally bi-sexual layout  of the vertebrate brain. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Leke, Renata; Bak, Lasse K; Schousboe, Arne; Waagepetersen, Helle S
Co-cultures of neurons and astrocytes were prepared from dissociated embryonic mouse cerebral cortex and cultured for 7 days. To investigate if these cultures may serve as a functional model system to study neuron-glia interaction with regard to GABA biosynthesis, the cells were incubated either in media containing [U-(13)C]glutamine (0.1, 0.3 and 0.5 mM) or 1 mM acetate plus 2.5 mM glucose plus 1 mM lactate. In the latter case one of the 3 substrates was uniformly (13)C labeled. Cellular contents and (13)C labeling of glutamate, GABA, aspartate and glutamine were determined in the cells after an incubation period of 2.5 h. The GABA biosynthetic machinery exhibited the expected complexity with regard to metabolic compartmentation and involvement of TCA cycle activity as seen in other culture systems containing GABAergic neurons. Metabolism of acetate clearly demonstrated glial synthesis of glutamine and its transfer to the neuronal compartment. It is concluded that this co-culture system serves as a reliable model in which functional and pharmacological aspects of GABA biosynthesis can be investigated.
Sonnay, Sarah; Poirot, Jordan; Just, Nathalie; Clerc, Anne-Catherine; Gruetter, Rolf; Rainer, Gregor; Duarte, João M N
Astrocytes play an important role in glutamatergic neurotransmission, namely by clearing synaptic glutamate and converting it into glutamine that is transferred back to neurons. The rate of this glutamate-glutamine cycle (V NT ) has been proposed to couple to that of glucose utilization and of neuronal tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that glutamatergic neurotransmission is also coupled to the TCA cycle rate in astrocytes. For that we investigated energy metabolism by means of magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) in the primary visual cortex of tree shrews (Tupaia belangeri) under light isoflurane anesthesia at rest and during continuous visual stimulation. After identifying the activated cortical volume by blood oxygenation level-dependent functional magnetic resonance imaging, 1 H MRS was performed to measure stimulation-induced variations in metabolite concentrations. Relative to baseline, stimulation of cortical activity for 20 min caused a reduction of glucose concentration by -0.34 ± 0.09 µmol/g (p glucose infusion was employed to measure fluxes of energy metabolism. Stimulation of glutamatergic activity, as indicated by a 20% increase of V NT , resulted in increased TCA cycle rates in neurons by 12% ( VTCAn, p glucose oxidation and to mitochondrial metabolism in both neurons and astrocytes. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
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.
Full Text Available The maturation of inhibitory circuits during adolescence may be tied to the onset of mental health disorders such as schizophrenia. Neurotrophin signaling likely plays a critical role in supporting inhibitory circuit development and is also implicated in psychiatric disease. Within the neocortex, subcircuits may mature at different times and show differential sensitivity to neurotrophin signaling. We measured miniature inhibitory and excitatory postsynaptic currents (mIPSC and mEPSCs in Layer 5 cell-types in the mouse anterior cingulate across the periadolescent period. We differentiated cell-types mainly by Thy1 YFP transgene expression and also retrobead injection labeling in the contralateral cingulate and ipsilateral pons. We found that YFP- neurons and commissural projecting neurons had lower frequency of mIPSCs than neighboring YFP+ neurons or pons projecting neurons in juvenile mice (P21-25. YFP- neurons and to a lesser extent commissural projecting neurons also showed a significant increase in mIPSC amplitude during the periadolescent period (P21-25 vs. P40-50, which was not seen in YFP+ neurons or pons projecting neurons. Systemic disruption of tyrosine kinase receptor B (TrkB signaling during P23-50 in TrkBF616A mice blocked developmental changes in mIPSC amplitude, without affecting miniature excitatory post synaptic currents (mEPSCs. Our data suggest that the maturation of inhibitory inputs onto layer 5 pyramidal neurons is cell-type specific. These data may inform our understanding of adolescent brain development across species and aid in identifying candidate subcircuits that may show greater vulnerability in mental illness.
Daniel McAllister Warthen
Full Text Available The medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC is involved in a wide range of executive cognitive functions, including reward evaluation, decision-making, memory extinction, mood, and task switching. Manipulation of the mPFC has been shown to alter food intake and food reward valuation, but whether exclusive stimulation of mPFC pyramidal neurons, which form the principle output of the mPFC, is sufficient to mediate food rewarded instrumental behavior is unknown. We sought to determine the behavioral consequences of manipulating mPFC output by exciting pyramidal neurons in mouse mPFC during performance of a panel of behavioral assays, focusing on food reward. We found that increasing mPFC pyramidal cell output using Designer Receptors Exclusively Activated by Designer Drugs (DREADD enhanced performance in instrumental food reward assays that assess food seeking behavior, while sparing effects in affect and food intake. Specifically, activation of mPFC pyramidal neurons enhanced operant responding for food reward, reinstatement of palatable food seeking, and suppression of impulsive responding for food reward. Conversely, activation of mPFC pyramidal neurons had no effect on unconditioned food intake, social interaction, or behavior in an open field. Furthermore, we found that behavioral outcome is influenced by the degree of mPFC activation, with a low drive sufficient to enhance operant responding and a higher drive required to alter impulsivity. Additionally, we provide data demonstrating that DREADD stimulation involves a nitric oxide synthase dependent pathway, similar to endogenous muscarinic M3 receptor stimulation, a finding that provides novel mechanistic insight into an increasingly widespread method of remote neuronal control.
Lisa Y. Maeng
Full Text Available Women are nearly twice as likely as men to suffer from anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD, indicating that many females are especially vulnerable to stressful life experience. A profound sex difference in the response to stress is also observed in laboratory animals. Acute exposure to an uncontrollable stressful event disrupts associative learning during classical eyeblink conditioning in female rats but enhances this same type of learning process in males. These sex differences in response to stress are dependent on neuronal activity in similar but also different brain regions. Neuronal activity in the basolateral nucleus of the amygdala (BLA is necessary in both males and females. However, neuronal activity in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC during the stressor is necessary to modify learning in females but not in males. The mPFC is often divided into its prelimbic (PL and infralimbic (IL subregions, which differ both in structure and function. Through its connections to the BLA, we hypothesized that neuronal activity within the PL, but not IL, during the stressor is necessary to suppress learning in females. To test this hypothesis, either the PL or IL of adult female rats was bilaterally inactivated with GABAA agonist muscimol during acute inescapable swim stress. 24h later, all subjects were trained with classical eyeblink conditioning. Though stressed, females without neuronal activity in the PL learned well. In contrast, females with IL inactivation during the stressor did not learn well, behaving similar to stressed vehicle-treated females. These data suggest that exposure to a stressful event critically engages the PL, but not IL, to disrupt associative learning in females. Together with previous studies, these data indicate that the PL communicates with the BLA to suppress learning after a stressful experience in females. This circuit may be similarly engaged in women who become cognitively impaired after stressful
Ronald P Gaykema
Full Text Available The medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC is implicated in aspects of executive function, that include the modulation of attentional and memory processes involved in goal selection. Food-seeking behavior has been shown to involve activation of the mPFC, both during the execution of strategies designed to obtain food and during the consumption of food itself. As these behaviors likely require differential engagement of the prefrontal cortex, we hypothesized that the pattern of neuronal activation would also be behavior dependent. In this study we describe, for the first time, the expression of Fos in different layers and cell types of the infralimbic/dorsal peduncular (IL/DP and prelimbic/anterior cingulate (PL/AC subdivisions of mouse mPFC following both the consumption of palatable food and following exploratory activity of the animal directed at obtaining food reward. While both manipulations led to increases of Fos expression in principal excitatory neurons relative to control, food-directed exploratory activity produced a significantly greater increase in Fos expression than observed in the food intake condition. Consequently, we hypothesized that mPFC interneuron activation would also be differentially engaged by these manipulations. Interestingly, Fos expression patterns differed substantially between treatments and interneuron subtype, illustrating how the differential engagement of subsets of mPFC interneurons depends on the behavioral state. In our experiments, both vasoactive intestinal peptide- and parvalbumin-expressing neurons showed enhanced Fos expression only during the food-dependent exploratory task and not during food intake. Conversely, elevations in arcuate and paraventricular hypothalamic fos expression were only observed following food intake and not following food driven exploration. Our data suggest that activation of select mPFC interneurons may be required to support high cognitive demand states while being dispensable during
Jun Xia; Minjie Yang; Yi Lei; Yicheng Zhou
Previous studies using magnetic resonance imaging(MRI)and functional MRI to study depression have primarily focused on proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy(1H-MRS)appearance in various areas of the brain and volume measurements in the limbic system.However,results have not been consistent.To the best of our knowledge,very little is known about the relationship between 1H-MRS appearance and depression inventory.In the present study,the relationship between 1H-MRS appearance in depressive patients and Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory-2 scale was analyzed.MRI and 1H-MRS exhibited widened sulci and cisterns,as well as an absence of abnormal signals in depressive patients.In addition,N-acetyl aspartate/total creatine ratios in bilateral hippocampi and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex were significantly less in depressive patients than in control subjects(P < 0.01).In contrast,choline-containing compounds/total creatine ratios in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex were significantly greater in depressive patients than in control subjects(P < 0.01).These ratios significantly and positively correlated with patient total depression scores as assessed using the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory-2 scale(r=0.934 7,0.878 7,P < 0.01).These results suggested that 1H-MRS could be used to reveal a reduced number of neurons in the hippocampus and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex,as well as altered membrane phospholipid metabolism in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex,in patients with depressive disorder.Abnormal mechanisms partially reflected severity of depressive disorder.
Full Text Available The mechanisms responsible for the propensity to gain weight or remain normal weight are poorly understood. The objective of this study was to study the neuronal response to visual food cues during short-term energy imbalance in healthy adults recruited as obesity-resistant (OR or obesity-prone (OP based on self-identification, BMI, and personal/family weight history. 25 OR and 28 OP subjects were studied in underfed (UF and overfed (OF as compared to eucaloric (EU conditions in a randomized crossover design. Each study phase included a 3 day run-in diet, 1 day of controlled feeding (basal energy needs for EU, 40% above/below basal energy needs for OF/UF, and a test day. On the test day fMRI was performed in the acute fed stated (30 minutes after a test meal while subjects viewed images of foods of high hedonic value and neutral non-food objects. Measures of appetite and hormones were also performed before and every 30 minutes after the test meal. UF was associated with significantly increased activation of insula, somatosensory cortex, inferior and medial prefrontal cortex, parahippocampus, precuneus, cingulate and visual cortex in OR. However, UF had no impact in OP. As a result, UF was associated with significantly greater activation, specifically in the insula, inferior prefrontal cortex, and somatosensory cortex in OR as compared to OP. While OF was overall associated with reduced activation of inferior visual cortex, no group interaction was observed with OF. In summary, these findings suggest that individuals resistant to weight gain and obesity are more sensitive to short-term energy imbalance, particularly with UF, than those prone to weight gain. The inability to sense or adapt to changes in energy balance may represent an important mechanism contributing to excess energy intake and risk for obesity.
Full Text Available We employed Illumina 450 K Infinium microarrays to profile DNA methylation (DNAm in neuronal nuclei separated by fluorescence-activated sorting from the postmortem orbitofrontal cortex (OFC of heroin users who died from heroin overdose (N = 37, suicide completers (N = 22 with no evidence of heroin use and from control subjects who did not abuse illicit drugs and died of non-suicide causes (N = 28. We identified 1298 differentially methylated CpG sites (DMSs between heroin users and controls, and 454 DMSs between suicide completers and controls (p < 0.001. DMSs and corresponding genes (DMGs in heroin users showed significant differences in the preferential context of hyper and hypo DM. HyperDMSs were enriched in gene bodies and exons but depleted in promoters, whereas hypoDMSs were enriched in promoters and enhancers. In addition, hyperDMGs showed preference for genes expressed specifically by glutamatergic as opposed to GABAergic neurons and enrichment for axonogenesis- and synaptic-related gene ontology categories, whereas hypoDMGs were enriched for transcription factor activity- and gene expression regulation-related terms. Finally, we found that the DNAm-based “epigenetic age” of neurons from heroin users was younger than that in controls. Suicide-related results were more difficult to interpret. Collectively, these findings suggest that the observed DNAm differences could represent functionally significant marks of heroin-associated plasticity in the OFC.
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.
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.
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.
Full Text Available A major hallmark of cortical organization is the existence of a variable number of layers, i.e., sheets of neurons stacked on top of each other, in which neurons have certain commonalities. However, even for the neocortex, variable numbers of layers have been described and it is just a convention to distinguish six layers from each other. Whether cortical layers are a structural epiphenomenon caused by developmental dynamics or represent a functionally important modularization of cortical computation is still unknown. Here we present our insights from the reeler mutant mouse, a model for a developmental, “molecular lesion”-induced loss of cortical layering that could serve as ground truth of what an intact layering adds to the cortex in terms of functionality. We could demonstrate that the reeler neocortex shows no inversion of cortical layers but rather a severe disorganization that in the primary somatosensory cortex leads to the complete loss of layers. Nevertheless, the somatosensory system is well organized. When exploring an enriched environment with specific sets of whiskers, activity-dependent gene expression takes place in the corresponding modules. Precise whisker stimuli lead to the functional activation of somatotopically organized barrel columns as visualized by intrinsic signal optical imaging. Similar results were obtained in the reeler visual system. When analyzing pathways that could be responsible for preservation of tactile perception, lemniscal thalamic projections were found to be largely intact, despite the smearing of target neurons across the cortical mantle. However, with optogenetic experiments we found evidence for a mild dispersion of thalamic synapse targeting on layer IV-spiny stellate cells, together with a general weakening in thalamocortical input strength. This weakening of thalamic inputs was compensated by intracortical mechanisms involving increased recurrent excitation and/or reduced feedforward
Del Valle Suarez, E.; Schmitz, C; Rezaie, P.; Gabbott, P.
Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) are pervasive eurodevelopmental disorders clinically characterised by deficits in three core behavioural parameters: social interaction, communication and repetitive behaviours. There are currently no biological markers for ASD. Diagnosis is based solely on behavioural characteristics that vary considerably in severity. Neuropathology is varied and inconsistent amongst cases. The spatial arrangement of neurons is reportedly altered within cortical areas whose f...
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.
Full Text Available The timing and mechanisms of protection by hyperbaric oxygenation (HBO in hypoxic-ischemic brain damage (HIBD have only been partially elucidated. We monitored the effect of HBO on the mitochondrial function of neuronal cells in the cerebral cortex of neonatal rats after HIBD. Neonatal Sprague-Dawley rats (total of 360 of both genders were randomly divided into normal control, HIBD, and HIBD+HBO groups. The HBO treatment began immediately after hypoxia-ischemia (HI and continued once a day for 7 consecutive days. Animals were euthanized 0, 2, 4, 6, and 12 h post-HI to monitor the changes in mitochondrial membrane potential (ΔΨm occurring soon after a single dose of HBO treatment, as well as 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7 days post-HI to study ΔΨm changes after a series of HBO treatments. Fluctuations in ΔΨm were observed in the ipsilateral cortex in both HIBD and HIBD+HBO groups. Within 2 to 12 h after HI insult, the ΔΨm of the HIBD and HIBD+HBO groups recovered to some extent. A secondary drop in ΔΨm was observed in both groups during the 1-4 days post-HI period, but was more severe in the HIBD+HBO group. There was a secondary recovery of ΔΨm observed in the HIBD+HBO group, but not in the HIBD group, during the 5-7 days period after HI insult. HBO therapy may not lead to improvement of neural cell mitochondrial function in the cerebral cortex in the early stage post-HI, but may improve it in the sub-acute stage post-HI.
Lameu, Ewandson L.; Borges, Fernando S.; Borges, Rafael R.; Batista, Antonio M.; Baptista, Murilo S.; Viana, Ricardo L.
The brain of mammals are divided into different cortical areas that are anatomically connected forming larger networks which perform cognitive tasks. The cat cerebral cortex is composed of 65 areas organised into the visual, auditory, somatosensory-motor and frontolimbic cognitive regions. We have built a network of networks, in which networks are connected among themselves according to the connections observed in the cat cortical areas aiming to study how inputs drive the synchronous behaviour in this cat brain-like network. We show that without external perturbations it is possible to observe high level of bursting synchronisation between neurons within almost all areas, except for the auditory area. Bursting synchronisation appears between neurons in the auditory region when an external perturbation is applied in another cognitive area. This is a clear evidence that burst synchronisation and collective behaviour in the brain might be a process mediated by other brain areas under stimulation.
Heidler, Juliana; Hardt, Stefanie; Wittig, Ilka; Tegeder, Irmgard
Progranulin deficiency is associated with neurodegeneration in humans and in mice. The mechanisms likely involve progranulin-promoted removal of protein waste via autophagy. We performed a deep proteomic screen of the pre-frontal cortex in aged (13-15 months) female progranulin-deficient mice (GRN -/- ) and mice with inducible neuron-specific overexpression of progranulin (SLICK-GRN-OE) versus the respective control mice. Proteins were extracted and analyzed per liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry (LC/MS) on a Thermo Scientific™ Q Exactive Plus equipped with an ultra-high performance liquid chromatography unit and a Nanospray Flex Ion-Source. Full Scan MS-data were acquired using Xcalibur and raw files were analyzed using the proteomics software Max Quant. The mouse reference proteome set from uniprot (June 2015) was used to identify peptides and proteins. The DiB data file is a reduced MaxQuant output and includes peptide and protein identification, accession numbers, protein and gene names, sequence coverage and label free quantification (LFQ) values of each sample. Differences in protein expression in genotypes are presented in "Progranulin overexpression in sensory neurons attenuates neuropathic pain in mice: Role of autophagy" (C. Altmann, S. Hardt, C. Fischer, J. Heidler, H.Y. Lim, A. Haussler, B. Albuquerque, B. Zimmer, C. Moser, C. Behrends, F. Koentgen, I. Wittig, M.H. Schmidt, A.M. Clement, T. Deller, I. Tegeder, 2016) .
Full Text Available Progranulin deficiency is associated with neurodegeneration in humans and in mice. The mechanisms likely involve progranulin-promoted removal of protein waste via autophagy. We performed a deep proteomic screen of the pre-frontal cortex in aged (13–15 months female progranulin-deficient mice (GRN−/− and mice with inducible neuron-specific overexpression of progranulin (SLICK-GRN-OE versus the respective control mice. Proteins were extracted and analyzed per liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry (LC/MS on a Thermo Scientific™ Q Exactive Plus equipped with an ultra-high performance liquid chromatography unit and a Nanospray Flex Ion-Source. Full Scan MS-data were acquired using Xcalibur and raw files were analyzed using the proteomics software Max Quant. The mouse reference proteome set from uniprot (June 2015 was used to identify peptides and proteins. The DiB data file is a reduced MaxQuant output and includes peptide and protein identification, accession numbers, protein and gene names, sequence coverage and label free quantification (LFQ values of each sample. Differences in protein expression in genotypes are presented in "Progranulin overexpression in sensory neurons attenuates neuropathic pain in mice: Role of autophagy" (C. Altmann, S. Hardt, C. Fischer, J. Heidler, H.Y. Lim, A. Haussler, B. Albuquerque, B. Zimmer, C. Moser, C. Behrends, F. Koentgen, I. Wittig, M.H. Schmidt, A.M. Clement, T. Deller, I. Tegeder, 2016 .
Radhika C Reddy
Full Text Available Testosterone plays an essential role in sexual differentiation of the male sheep brain. The ovine sexually dimorphic nucleus (oSDN, is 2 to 3 times larger in males than in females, and this sex difference is under the control of testosterone. The effect of testosterone on oSDN volume may result from enhanced expansion of soma areas and/or dendritic fields. To test this hypothesis, cells derived from the hypothalamus-preoptic area (HPOA and cerebral cortex (CTX of lamb fetuses were grown in primary culture to examine the direct morphological effects of testosterone on these cellular components. We found that within two days of plating, neurons derived from both the HPOA and CTX extend neuritic processes and express androgen receptors and aromatase immunoreactivity. Both treated and control neurites continue to grow and branch with increasing time in culture. Treatment with testosterone (10 nM for 3 days significantly (P < 0.05 increased both total neurite outgrowth (35% and soma size (8% in the HPOA and outgrowth (21% and number of branch points (33% in the CTX. These findings indicate that testosterone-induced somal enlargement and neurite outgrowth in fetal lamb neurons may contribute to the development of a fully masculine sheep brain.
Cornier, Marc-Andre; McFadden, Kristina L; Thomas, Elizabeth A; Bechtell, Jamie L; Bessesen, Daniel H; Tregellas, Jason R
The mechanisms responsible for the propensity to gain weight or remain normal weight are poorly understood. The objective of this study was to study the neuronal response to visual food cues during short-term energy imbalance in healthy adults recruited as obesity-resistant (OR) or obesity-prone (OP) based on self-identification, body mass index, and personal/family weight history. Twenty-five OR and 28 OP subjects were studied in underfed (UF) and overfed (OF) as compared to eucaloric (EU) conditions in a randomized crossover design. Each study phase included a 3-day run-in diet, 1 day of controlled feeding (basal energy needs for EU, 40% above/below basal energy needs for OF/UF), and a test day. On the test day, fMRI was performed in the acute fed stated (30 min after a test meal) while subjects viewed images of foods of high hedonic value and neutral non-food objects. Measures of appetite and hormones were also performed before and every 30 min after the test meal. UF was associated with significantly increased activation of insula, somatosensory cortex, inferior and medial prefrontal cortex (PFC), parahippocampus, precuneus, cingulate, and visual cortex in OR. However, UF had no impact in OP. As a result, UF was associated with significantly greater activation, specifically in the insula, inferior PFC, and somatosensory cortex in OR as compared to OP. While OF was overall associated with reduced activation of inferior visual cortex, no group interaction was observed with OF. In summary, these findings suggest that individuals resistant to weight gain and obesity are more sensitive to short-term energy imbalance, particularly with UF, than those prone to weight gain. The inability to sense or adapt to changes in energy balance may represent an important mechanism contributing to excess energy intake and risk for obesity.
Actions motivated by rewards are often associated with risk of punishment. Little is known about the neural representation of punishment risk during reward-seeking behavior. We modeled this circumstance in rats by designing a task where actions were consistently rewarded but probabilistically punished. Spike activity and local field potentials were recorded during task performance simultaneously from VTA and mPFC, two reciprocally connected regions implicated in reward-seeking and aversive behaviors. At the single unit level, we found that ensembles of putative dopamine and non-dopamine VTA neurons and mPFC neurons encode the relationship between action and punishment. At the network level, we found that coherent theta oscillations synchronize VTA and mPFC in a bottom-up direction, effectively phase-modulating the neuronal spike activity in the two regions during punishment-free actions. This synchrony declined as a function of punishment probability, suggesting that during reward-seeking actions, risk of punishment diminishes VTA-driven neural synchrony between the two regions. PMID:29058673
Hawking, Thomas G; Gerdjikov, Todor V
Dorsolateral striatum (DLS) is implicated in tactile perception and receives strong projections from somatosensory cortex. However, the sensory representations encoded by striatal projection neurons are not well understood. Here we characterized the contribution of DLS to the encoding of vibrotactile information in rats by assessing striatal responses to precise frequency stimuli delivered to a single vibrissa. We applied stimuli in a frequency range (45-90 Hz) that evokes discriminable percepts and carries most of the power of vibrissa vibration elicited by a range of complex fine textures. Both medium spiny neurons and evoked potentials showed tactile responses that were modulated by slow wave oscillations. Furthermore, medium spiny neuron population responses represented stimulus frequency on par with previously reported behavioral benchmarks. Our results suggest that striatum encodes frequency information of vibrotactile stimuli which is dynamically modulated by ongoing brain state.
Longo, Matthew R.; Azanon, 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.…
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.
Nigam, Sunny; Shimono, Masanori; Ito, Shinya; Yeh, Fang-Chin; Timme, Nicholas; Myroshnychenko, Maxym; Lapish, Christopher C; Tosi, Zachary; Hottowy, Pawel; Smith, Wesley C; Masmanidis, Sotiris C; Litke, Alan M; Sporns, Olaf; Beggs, John M
The performance of complex networks, like the brain, depends on how effectively their elements communicate. Despite the importance of communication, it is virtually unknown how information is transferred in local cortical networks, consisting of hundreds of closely spaced neurons. To address this, it is important to record simultaneously from hundreds of neurons at a spacing that matches typical axonal connection distances, and at a temporal resolution that matches synaptic delays. We used a 512-electrode array (60 μm spacing) to record spontaneous activity at 20 kHz from up to 500 neurons simultaneously in slice cultures of mouse somatosensory cortex for 1 h at a time. We applied a previously validated version of transfer entropy to quantify information transfer. Similar to in vivo reports, we found an approximately lognormal distribution of firing rates. Pairwise information transfer strengths also were nearly lognormally distributed, similar to reports of synaptic strengths. Some neurons transferred and received much more information than others, which is consistent with previous predictions. Neurons with the highest outgoing and incoming information transfer were more strongly connected to each other than chance, thus forming a "rich club." We found similar results in networks recorded in vivo from rodent cortex, suggesting the generality of these findings. A rich-club structure has been found previously in large-scale human brain networks and is thought to facilitate communication between cortical regions. The discovery of a small, but information-rich, subset of neurons within cortical regions suggests that this population will play a vital role in communication, learning, and memory. Significance statement: Many studies have focused on communication networks between cortical brain regions. In contrast, very few studies have examined communication networks within a cortical region. This is the first study to combine such a large number of neurons (several
Shimono, Masanori; Ito, Shinya; Yeh, Fang-Chin; Timme, Nicholas; Myroshnychenko, Maxym; Lapish, Christopher C.; Tosi, Zachary; Hottowy, Pawel; Smith, Wesley C.; Masmanidis, Sotiris C.; Litke, Alan M.; Sporns, Olaf; Beggs, John M.
The performance of complex networks, like the brain, depends on how effectively their elements communicate. Despite the importance of communication, it is virtually unknown how information is transferred in local cortical networks, consisting of hundreds of closely spaced neurons. To address this, it is important to record simultaneously from hundreds of neurons at a spacing that matches typical axonal connection distances, and at a temporal resolution that matches synaptic delays. We used a 512-electrode array (60 μm spacing) to record spontaneous activity at 20 kHz from up to 500 neurons simultaneously in slice cultures of mouse somatosensory cortex for 1 h at a time. We applied a previously validated version of transfer entropy to quantify information transfer. Similar to in vivo reports, we found an approximately lognormal distribution of firing rates. Pairwise information transfer strengths also were nearly lognormally distributed, similar to reports of synaptic strengths. Some neurons transferred and received much more information than others, which is consistent with previous predictions. Neurons with the highest outgoing and incoming information transfer were more strongly connected to each other than chance, thus forming a “rich club.” We found similar results in networks recorded in vivo from rodent cortex, suggesting the generality of these findings. A rich-club structure has been found previously in large-scale human brain networks and is thought to facilitate communication between cortical regions. The discovery of a small, but information-rich, subset of neurons within cortical regions suggests that this population will play a vital role in communication, learning, and memory. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Many studies have focused on communication networks between cortical brain regions. In contrast, very few studies have examined communication networks within a cortical region. This is the first study to combine such a large number of neurons (several
Sallés, Laia; Gironès, Xavier; Lafuente, José Vicente
The basic characteristics of Penfield homunculus (somatotopy and unique representation) have been questioned. The existence of a defined anatomo-functional organization within different segments of the same region is controversial. The presence of multiple motor representations in the primary motor area and in the parietal lobe interconnected by parieto-frontal circuits, which are widely overlapped, form a complex organization. Both features support the recovery of functions after brain injury. Regarding the movement organization, it is possible to yield a relevant impact through the understanding of actions and intentions of others, which is mediated by the activation of mirror-neuron systems. The implementation of cognitive functions (observation, image of the action and imitation) from the acute treatment phase allows the activation of motor representations without having to perform the action and it plays an important role in learning motor patterns. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.
Tsirulnikov, Kirill; Abuladze, Natalia; Bragin, Anatol; Faull, Kym; Cascio, Duilio; Damoiseaux, Robert; Schibler, Matthew J.; Pushkin, Alexander
4-Hydroxy-2-nonenal (4HNE) and acrolein (ACR) are highly reactive neurotoxic products of lipid peroxidation that are implicated in the pathogenesis and progression of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. Conjugation with glutathione (GSH) initiates the 4HNE and ACR detoxification pathway, which generates the mercapturates of 4HNE and ACR that can be excreted. Prior work has shown that the efficiency of the GSH-dependent renal detoxification of haloalkene derived mercapturates is significantly decreased upon their deacetylation because of rapid transformation of the deacetylated products into toxic compounds mediated by β-lyase. The enzymes of the GSH-conjugation pathway and β-lyases are expressed in the brain, and we hypothesized that a similar toxicity mechanism may be initiated in the brain by the deacetylation of 4HNE- and ACR-mercapturate. The present study was performed to identify an enzyme(s) involved in 4HNE- and ACR-mercapturate deacetylation, characterize the brain expression of this enzyme and determine whether its inhibition decreases 4HNE and 4HNE-mercapturate neurotoxicity. We demonstrated that of two candidate deacetylases, aminoacylases 1 (AA1) and 3 (AA3), only AA3 efficiently deacetylates both 4HNE- and ACR-mercapturate. AA3 was further localized to neurons and blood vessels. Using a small molecule screen we generated high-affinity AA3 inhibitors. Two of them completely protected rat brain cortex neurons expressing AA3 from the toxicity of 4HNE-mercapturate. 4HNE-cysteine (4HNE-Cys) was also neurotoxic and its toxicity was mostly prevented by a β-lyase inhibitor, aminooxyacetate. The results suggest that the AA3 mediated deacetylation of 4HNE-mercapturate may be involved in the neurotoxicity of 4HNE.
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.)
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.)
Chuang, Chi-Fen; Wu, Chen-Wei; Weng, Ying; Hu, Pei-San; Yeh, Shin-Rung; Chang, Yen-Chung
Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is widely used to treat advanced Parkinson’s disease (PD). Here, we investigated how DBS applied on the subthalamic nucleus (STN) influenced the neural activity in the motor cortex. Rats, which had the midbrain dopaminergic neurons partially depleted unilaterally, called the hemi-Parkinsonian rats, were used as a study model. c-Fos expression in the neurons was used as an indicator of neural activity. Application of high-frequency stimulation (HFS) upon the STN was used to mimic the DBS treatment. The motor cortices in the two hemispheres of hemi-Parkinsonian rats were found to contain unequal densities of c-Fos-positive (Fos+) cells, and STN-HFS rectified this bilateral imbalance. In addition, STN-HFS led to the intense c-Fos expression in a group of motor cortical neurons which exhibited biochemical and anatomical characteristics resembling those of the pyramidal tract (PT) neurons sending efferent projections to the STN. The number of PT neurons expressing high levels of c-Fos was significantly reduced by local application of the antagonists of non-N-methyl-D-aspartate (non-NMDA) glutamate receptors, gammaaminobutyric acid A (GABAA) receptors and dopamine receptors in the upper layers of the motor cortex. The results indicate that the coincident activations of synapses and dopamine receptors in the motor cortex during STN-HFS trigger the intense expression of c-Fos of the PT neurons. The implications of the results on the cellular mechanism underlying the therapeutic effects of STN-DBS on the movement disorders of PD are also discussed.
Pineda Jaime A
?" In this review, we argue from an anatomical, physiological, modeling, and functional perspectives that a critical component of the human mirror neuron system is sensorimotor cortex. Not only are sensorimotor transformations necessary for computing the patterns of muscle activation and kinematics during action observation but they provide potential answers to the development, correspondence and control problems.
Pineda, Jaime A
from an anatomical, physiological, modeling, and functional perspectives that a critical component of the human mirror neuron system is sensorimotor cortex. Not only are sensorimotor transformations necessary for computing the patterns of muscle activation and kinematics during action observation but they provide potential answers to the development, correspondence and control problems. PMID:18928566
Full Text Available Rationale Decision-making is an essential component of our everyday life commonly disabled in a myriad of psychiatric conditions such as bipolar and impulsive control disorders, addiction and pathological gambling, or schizophrenia. A large cerebral network encompassing the prefrontal cortex -PFC- the amygdala and the nucleus accumbens is activated for efficient decision-making.Methods We developed a Mouse Gambling Task -MGT- well suited to investigate the influence of uncertainty and risk in decision-making and the role of neurobiological circuits and their monoaminergic inputs. Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs of the PFC are important for decision-making processes but their presumed roles in risk-taking and uncertainty management, as well as in cellular balance of excitation and inhibition (E/I need to be investigated. Results Using mice lacking nAChRs - β2-/- mice, we evidence for the first time the crucial role of nAChRs in the fine tuning of prefrontal E/I balance together with the PFC, insular, and hippocampal alterations in gambling behavior likely due to sensitivity to penalties and flexibility alterations. Risky behaviors and perseveration in extinction task were largely increased in β2-/- mice as compared to control mice, suggesting the important role of nAChRs in the ability to make appropriate choices adapted to the outcome.
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...
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.
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.
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.
Harb, Kawssar; Magrinelli, Elia; Nicolas, Céline S; Lukianets, Nikita; Frangeul, Laura; Pietri, Mariel; Sun, Tao; Sandoz, Guillaume; Grammont, Franck; Jabaudon, Denis; Studer, Michèle; Alfano, Christian
During cortical development, the identity of major classes of long-distance projection neurons is established by the expression of molecular determinants, which become gradually restricted and mutually exclusive. However, the mechanisms by which projection neurons acquire their final properties during postnatal stages are still poorly understood. In this study, we show that the number of neurons co-expressing Ctip2 and Satb2, respectively involved in the early specification of subcerebral and callosal projection neurons, progressively increases after birth in the somatosensory cortex. Ctip2/Satb2 postnatal co-localization defines two distinct neuronal subclasses projecting either to the contralateral cortex or to the brainstem suggesting that Ctip2/Satb2 co-expression may refine their properties rather than determine their identity. Gain- and loss-of-function approaches reveal that the transcriptional adaptor Lmo4 drives this maturation program through modulation of epigenetic mechanisms in a time- and area-specific manner, thereby indicating that a previously unknown genetic program postnatally promotes the acquisition of final subtype-specific features. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.09531.001 PMID:26814051
Ito, M.; Kawabata, M.; Shoji, R.
Rats were irradiated by 200 R of x ray on day 17 of gestation through the body wall of the mother. When they underwent the following electrophysiological tests at the age of 3 to 4 month, the somatosensory cortex showed a lack of layers II, III, IV, and Va. Spike responses to quick whisker deflections were recorded from single cells in the somatosenory cortex of normal and prenatally x-irradiated rats. For the irradiated rats the response latency was prolonged when compared to the normal controls. Cortical laminar analysis of field potentials revealed that there was no difference in the latency of these potentials between the two groups, suggesting that vibrissal sensory signals reach the cortical level normally even in the irradiated rats. The prolonged latency of the irradiated cortical neuronal response could thus be ascribed to an abnormal intracortical delay, which was most likely associated with the failure of development of layer IV stellate cells in these preparations
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.