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Sample records for term synaptic plasticity

  1. Models of Short-Term Synaptic Plasticity.

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    Barroso-Flores, Janet; Herrera-Valdez, Marco A; Galarraga, Elvira; Bargas, José

    2017-01-01

    We focus on dynamical descriptions of short-term synaptic plasticity. Instead of focusing on the molecular machinery that has been reviewed recently by several authors, we concentrate on the dynamics and functional significance of synaptic plasticity, and review some mathematical models that reproduce different properties of the dynamics of short term synaptic plasticity that have been observed experimentally. The complexity and shortcomings of these models point to the need of simple, yet physiologically meaningful models. We propose a simplified model to be tested in synapses displaying different types of short-term plasticity.

  2. Short-term synaptic plasticity and heterogeneity in neural systems

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    Mejias, J. F.; Kappen, H. J.; Longtin, A.; Torres, J. J.

    2013-01-01

    We review some recent results on neural dynamics and information processing which arise when considering several biophysical factors of interest, in particular, short-term synaptic plasticity and neural heterogeneity. The inclusion of short-term synaptic plasticity leads to enhanced long-term memory capacities, a higher robustness of memory to noise, and irregularity in the duration of the so-called up cortical states. On the other hand, considering some level of neural heterogeneity in neuron models allows neural systems to optimize information transmission in rate coding and temporal coding, two strategies commonly used by neurons to codify information in many brain areas. In all these studies, analytical approximations can be made to explain the underlying dynamics of these neural systems.

  3. Unconjugated bilirubin exposure impairs hippocampal long-term synaptic plasticity.

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    Fang-Yu Chang

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Jaundice is one of the most common problems encountered in newborn infants, due to immaturity of hepatic conjugation and transport processes for bilirubin. Although the majority of neonatal jaundice is benign, some neonates with severe hyperbilirubinemia develop bilirubin encephalopathy or kernicterus. Accumulation of unconjugated bilirubin (UCB in selected brain regions may result in temporary or permanent impairments of auditory, motor, or cognitive function; however, the molecular mechanisms by which UCB elicits such neurotoxicity are still poorly understood. The present study is undertaken to investigate whether prolonged exposure of rat organotypic hippocampal slice cultures to UCB alters the induction of long-term synaptic plasticity. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Using electrophysiological recording techniques, we find that exposure of hippocampal slice cultures to clinically relevant concentrations of UCB for 24 or 48 h results in an impairment of CA1 long-term potentiation (LTP and long-term depression (LTD induction in a time- and concentration-dependent manner. Hippocampal slice cultures stimulated with UCB show no changes in the secretion profiles of the pro-inflammatory cytokines, interleukin-1beta and tumor necrosis factor-alpha, or the propidium ioide uptake. UCB treatment produced a significant decrease in the levels of NR1, NR2A and NR2B subunits of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA receptors through a calpain-mediated proteolytic cleavage mechanism. Pretreatment of the hippocampal slice cultures with NMDA receptor antagonist or calpain inhibitors effectively prevented the UCB-induced impairment of LTP and LTD. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: Our results indicate that the proteolytic cleavage of NMDA receptor subunits by calpain may play a critical role in mediating the UCB-induced impairment of long-term synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus. These observations provide new insights into the molecular mechanisms underlying UCB

  4. Imaging synaptic plasticity

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    Padamsey Zahid

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Over the past decade, the use and development of optical imaging techniques has advanced our understanding of synaptic plasticity by offering the spatial and temporal resolution necessary to examine long-term changes at individual synapses. Here, we review the use of these techniques in recent studies of synaptic plasticity and, in particular, long-term potentiation in the hippocampus.

  5. The Role of Short Term Synaptic Plasticity in Temporal Coding of Neuronal Networks

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    Chandrasekaran, Lakshmi

    2008-01-01

    Short term synaptic plasticity is a phenomenon which is commonly found in the central nervous system. It could contribute to functions of signal processing namely, temporal integration and coincidence detection by modulating the input synaptic strength. This dissertation has two parts. First, we study the effects of short term synaptic plasticity…

  6. Short-term synaptic plasticity at interneuronal synapses could sculpt rhythmic motor patterns

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    Yan eJia

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The output of a neuronal network depends on the organization and functional properties of its component cells and synapses. While the characterization of synaptic properties has lagged cellular analyses, a potentially important aspect in rhythmically active networks is how network synapses affect, and are in turn affected by, network activity. This could lead to a potential circular interaction where short-term activity-dependent synaptic plasticity is both influenced by and influences the network output. The analysis of synaptic plasticity in the lamprey locomotor network was extended here to characterize the short-term plasticity of connections between network interneurons and to try and address its potential network role. Paired recordings from identified interneurons in quiescent networks showed synapse-specific synaptic properties and plasticity that supported the presence of two hemisegmental groups that could influence bursting: depression in an excitatory interneuron group, and facilitation in an inhibitory feedback circuit. The influence of activity-dependent synaptic plasticity on network activity was investigated experimentally by changing Ringer Ca2+ levels, and in a simple computer model. A potential caveat of the experimental analyses was that changes in Ringer Ca2+ (and compensatory adjustments in Mg2+ in some cases could alter several other cellular and synaptic properties. Several of these properties were tested, and while there was some variability, these were not usually significantly affected by the Ringer changes. The experimental analyses suggested that depression of excitatory inputs had the strongest influence on the patterning of network activity. The simulation supported a role for this effect, and also suggested that the inhibitory facilitating group could modulate the influence of the excitatory synaptic depression. Short-term activity-dependent synaptic plasticity has not generally been considered in spinal cord

  7. Short-Term Synaptic Plasticity at Interneuronal Synapses Could Sculpt Rhythmic Motor Patterns.

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    Jia, Yan; Parker, David

    2016-01-01

    The output of a neuronal network depends on the organization and functional properties of its component cells and synapses. While the characterization of synaptic properties has lagged cellular analyses, a potentially important aspect in rhythmically active networks is how network synapses affect, and are in turn affected by, network activity. This could lead to a potential circular interaction where short-term activity-dependent synaptic plasticity is both influenced by and influences the network output. The analysis of synaptic plasticity in the lamprey locomotor network was extended here to characterize the short-term plasticity of connections between network interneurons and to try and address its potential network role. Paired recordings from identified interneurons in quiescent networks showed synapse-specific synaptic properties and plasticity that supported the presence of two hemisegmental groups that could influence bursting: depression in an excitatory interneuron group, and facilitation in an inhibitory feedback circuit. The influence of activity-dependent synaptic plasticity on network activity was investigated experimentally by changing Ringer Ca(2+) levels, and in a simple computer model. A potential caveat of the experimental analyses was that changes in Ringer Ca(2+) (and compensatory adjustments in Mg(2+) in some cases) could alter several other cellular and synaptic properties. Several of these properties were tested, and while there was some variability, these were not usually significantly affected by the Ringer changes. The experimental analyses suggested that depression of excitatory inputs had the strongest influence on the patterning of network activity. The simulation supported a role for this effect, and also suggested that the inhibitory facilitating group could modulate the influence of the excitatory synaptic depression. Short-term activity-dependent synaptic plasticity has not generally been considered in spinal cord models. These

  8. A unifying theory of synaptic long-term plasticity based on a sparse distribution of synaptic strength

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    Daniel eKrieg

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Long-term synaptic plasticity is fundamental to learning and network function. It has been studied under various induction protocols and depends on firing rates, membrane voltage, and precise timing of action potentials.These protocols show different facets of a common underlying mechanism but they are mostly modeled as distinct phenomena.Here, we show that all of these different dependencies can be explained from a single computational principle.The objective is a sparse distribution of excitatory synaptic strength, which may help to reduce metabolic costs associated with synaptic transmission.Based on this objective we derive a stochastic gradient ascent learning rule which is of differential-Hebbian type.It is formulated in biophysical quantities and can be related to current mechanistic theories of synaptic plasticity.The learning rule accounts for experimental findings from all major induction protocols and explains a classic phenomenon of metaplasticity.Furthermore, our model predicts the existence of metaplasticity for STDP.Thus, we provide a theory of long-term synaptic plasticity that unifies different induction protocols and provides a connection between functional and mechanistic levels of description.

  9. Degeneracy in the regulation of short-term plasticity and synaptic filtering by presynaptic mechanisms.

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    Mukunda, Chinmayee L; Narayanan, Rishikesh

    2017-04-15

    We develop a new biophysically rooted, physiologically constrained conductance-based synaptic model to mechanistically account for short-term facilitation and depression, respectively through residual calcium and transmitter depletion kinetics. We address the specific question of how presynaptic components (including voltage-gated ion channels, pumps, buffers and release-handling mechanisms) and interactions among them define synaptic filtering and short-term plasticity profiles. Employing global sensitivity analyses (GSAs), we show that near-identical synaptic filters and short-term plasticity profiles could emerge from disparate presynaptic parametric combinations with weak pairwise correlations. Using virtual knockout models, a technique to address the question of channel-specific contributions within the GSA framework, we unveil the differential and variable impact of each ion channel on synaptic physiology. Our conclusions strengthen the argument that parametric and interactional complexity in biological systems should not be viewed from the limited curse-of-dimensionality standpoint, but from the evolutionarily advantageous perspective of providing functional robustness through degeneracy. Information processing in neurons is known to emerge as a gestalt of pre- and post-synaptic filtering. However, the impact of presynaptic mechanisms on synaptic filters has not been quantitatively assessed. Here, we developed a biophysically rooted, conductance-based model synapse that was endowed with six different voltage-gated ion channels, calcium pumps, calcium buffer and neurotransmitter-replenishment mechanisms in the presynaptic terminal. We tuned our model to match the short-term plasticity profile and band-pass structure of Schaffer collateral synapses, and performed sensitivity analyses to demonstrate that presynaptic voltage-gated ion channels regulated synaptic filters through changes in excitability and associated calcium influx. These sensitivity analyses

  10. Dendritic spine dynamics regulate the long-term stability of synaptic plasticity.

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    O'Donnell, Cian; Nolan, Matthew F; van Rossum, Mark C W

    2011-11-09

    Long-term synaptic plasticity requires postsynaptic influx of Ca²⁺ and is accompanied by changes in dendritic spine size. Unless Ca²⁺ influx mechanisms and spine volume scale proportionally, changes in spine size will modify spine Ca²⁺ concentrations during subsequent synaptic activation. We show that the relationship between Ca²⁺ influx and spine volume is a fundamental determinant of synaptic stability. If Ca²⁺ influx is undercompensated for increases in spine size, then strong synapses are stabilized and synaptic strength distributions have a single peak. In contrast, overcompensation of Ca²⁺ influx leads to binary, persistent synaptic strengths with double-peaked distributions. Biophysical simulations predict that CA1 pyramidal neuron spines are undercompensating. This unifies experimental findings that weak synapses are more plastic than strong synapses, that synaptic strengths are unimodally distributed, and that potentiation saturates for a given stimulus strength. We conclude that structural plasticity provides a simple, local, and general mechanism that allows dendritic spines to foster both rapid memory formation and persistent memory storage.

  11. Synaptic plasticity, neural circuits, and the emerging role of altered short-term information processing in schizophrenia.

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    Crabtree, Gregg W; Gogos, Joseph A

    2014-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity alters the strength of information flow between presynaptic and postsynaptic neurons and thus modifies the likelihood that action potentials in a presynaptic neuron will lead to an action potential in a postsynaptic neuron. As such, synaptic plasticity and pathological changes in synaptic plasticity impact the synaptic computation which controls the information flow through the neural microcircuits responsible for the complex information processing necessary to drive adaptive behaviors. As current theories of neuropsychiatric disease suggest that distinct dysfunctions in neural circuit performance may critically underlie the unique symptoms of these diseases, pathological alterations in synaptic plasticity mechanisms may be fundamental to the disease process. Here we consider mechanisms of both short-term and long-term plasticity of synaptic transmission and their possible roles in information processing by neural microcircuits in both health and disease. As paradigms of neuropsychiatric diseases with strongly implicated risk genes, we discuss the findings in schizophrenia and autism and consider the alterations in synaptic plasticity and network function observed in both human studies and genetic mouse models of these diseases. Together these studies have begun to point toward a likely dominant role of short-term synaptic plasticity alterations in schizophrenia while dysfunction in autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) may be due to a combination of both short-term and long-term synaptic plasticity alterations.

  12. Short-Term Synaptic Plasticity Regulation in Solution-Gated Indium-Gallium-Zinc-Oxide Electric-Double-Layer Transistors.

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    Wan, Chang Jin; Liu, Yang Hui; Zhu, Li Qiang; Feng, Ping; Shi, Yi; Wan, Qing

    2016-04-20

    In the biological nervous system, synaptic plasticity regulation is based on the modulation of ionic fluxes, and such regulation was regarded as the fundamental mechanism underlying memory and learning. Inspired by such biological strategies, indium-gallium-zinc-oxide (IGZO) electric-double-layer (EDL) transistors gated by aqueous solutions were proposed for synaptic behavior emulations. Short-term synaptic plasticity, such as paired-pulse facilitation, high-pass filtering, and orientation tuning, was experimentally emulated in these EDL transistors. Most importantly, we found that such short-term synaptic plasticity can be effectively regulated by alcohol (ethyl alcohol) and salt (potassium chloride) additives. Our results suggest that solution gated oxide-based EDL transistors could act as the platforms for short-term synaptic plasticity emulation.

  13. Short-term synaptic plasticity in the nociceptive thalamic-anterior cingulate pathway.

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    Shyu, Bai-Chuang; Vogt, Brent A

    2009-09-04

    Although the mechanisms of short- and long-term potentiation of nociceptive-evoked responses are well known in the spinal cord, including central sensitization, there has been a growing body of information on such events in the cerebral cortex. In view of the importance of anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) in chronic pain conditions, this review considers neuronal plasticities in the thalamocingulate pathway that may be the earliest changes associated with such syndromes. A single nociceptive electrical stimulus to the sciatic nerve induced a prominent sink current in the layer II/III of the ACC in vivo, while high frequency stimulation potentiated the response of this current. Paired-pulse facilitation by electrical stimulation of midline, mediodorsal and intralaminar thalamic nuclei (MITN) suggesting that the MITN projection to ACC mediates the nociceptive short-term plasticity. The short-term synaptic plasticities were evaluated for different inputs in vitro where the medial thalamic and contralateral corpus callosum afferents were compared. Stimulation of the mediodorsal afferent evoked a stronger short-term synaptic plasticity and effectively transferred the bursting thalamic activity to cingulate cortex that was not true for contralateral stimulation. This short-term enhancement of synaptic transmission was mediated by polysynaptic pathways and NMDA receptors. Layer II/III neurons of the ACC express a short-term plasticity that involves glutamate and presynaptic calcium influx and is an important mechanism of the short-term plasticity. The potentiation of ACC neuronal activity induced by thalamic bursting suggest that short-term synaptic plasticities enable the processing of nociceptive information from the medial thalamus and this temporal response variability is particularly important in pain because temporal maintenance of the response supports cortical integration and memory formation related to noxious events. Moreover, these modifications of cingulate

  14. Role of Atypical Protein Kinases in Maintenance of Long-Term Memory and Synaptic Plasticity.

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    Borodinova, A A; Zuzina, A B; Balaban, P M

    2017-03-01

    Investigation of biochemical mechanisms underlying the long-term storage of information in nervous system is one of main problems of modern neurobiology. As a molecular basis of long-term memory, long-term changes in kinase activities, increase in the level and changes in the subunit composition of receptors in synaptic membranes, local activity of prion-like proteins, and epigenetic modifications of chromatin have been proposed. Perhaps a combination of all or of some of these factors underlies the storage of long-term memory in the brain. Many recent studies have shown an exclusively important role of atypical protein kinases (PKCζ, PKMζ, and PKCι/λ) in processes of learning, consolidation and maintenance of memory. The present review is devoted to consideration of mechanisms of transcriptional and translational control of atypical protein kinases and their roles in induction and maintenance of long-term synaptic plasticity and memory in vertebrates and invertebrates.

  15. Estimating short-term synaptic plasticity from pre- and postsynaptic spiking.

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    Abed Ghanbari

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Short-term synaptic plasticity (STP critically affects the processing of information in neuronal circuits by reversibly changing the effective strength of connections between neurons on time scales from milliseconds to a few seconds. STP is traditionally studied using intracellular recordings of postsynaptic potentials or currents evoked by presynaptic spikes. However, STP also affects the statistics of postsynaptic spikes. Here we present two model-based approaches for estimating synaptic weights and short-term plasticity from pre- and postsynaptic spike observations alone. We extend a generalized linear model (GLM that predicts postsynaptic spiking as a function of the observed pre- and postsynaptic spikes and allow the connection strength (coupling term in the GLM to vary as a function of time based on the history of presynaptic spikes. Our first model assumes that STP follows a Tsodyks-Markram description of vesicle depletion and recovery. In a second model, we introduce a functional description of STP where we estimate the coupling term as a biophysically unrestrained function of the presynaptic inter-spike intervals. To validate the models, we test the accuracy of STP estimation using the spiking of pre- and postsynaptic neurons with known synaptic dynamics. We first test our models using the responses of layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons to simulated presynaptic input with different types of STP, and then use simulated spike trains to examine the effects of spike-frequency adaptation, stochastic vesicle release, spike sorting errors, and common input. We find that, using only spike observations, both model-based methods can accurately reconstruct the time-varying synaptic weights of presynaptic inputs for different types of STP. Our models also capture the differences in postsynaptic spike responses to presynaptic spikes following short vs long inter-spike intervals, similar to results reported for thalamocortical connections. These models may

  16. Estimating short-term synaptic plasticity from pre- and postsynaptic spiking

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    Malyshev, Aleksey; Stevenson, Ian H.

    2017-01-01

    Short-term synaptic plasticity (STP) critically affects the processing of information in neuronal circuits by reversibly changing the effective strength of connections between neurons on time scales from milliseconds to a few seconds. STP is traditionally studied using intracellular recordings of postsynaptic potentials or currents evoked by presynaptic spikes. However, STP also affects the statistics of postsynaptic spikes. Here we present two model-based approaches for estimating synaptic weights and short-term plasticity from pre- and postsynaptic spike observations alone. We extend a generalized linear model (GLM) that predicts postsynaptic spiking as a function of the observed pre- and postsynaptic spikes and allow the connection strength (coupling term in the GLM) to vary as a function of time based on the history of presynaptic spikes. Our first model assumes that STP follows a Tsodyks-Markram description of vesicle depletion and recovery. In a second model, we introduce a functional description of STP where we estimate the coupling term as a biophysically unrestrained function of the presynaptic inter-spike intervals. To validate the models, we test the accuracy of STP estimation using the spiking of pre- and postsynaptic neurons with known synaptic dynamics. We first test our models using the responses of layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons to simulated presynaptic input with different types of STP, and then use simulated spike trains to examine the effects of spike-frequency adaptation, stochastic vesicle release, spike sorting errors, and common input. We find that, using only spike observations, both model-based methods can accurately reconstruct the time-varying synaptic weights of presynaptic inputs for different types of STP. Our models also capture the differences in postsynaptic spike responses to presynaptic spikes following short vs long inter-spike intervals, similar to results reported for thalamocortical connections. These models may thus be useful

  17. Astrocytes: Orchestrating synaptic plasticity?

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    De Pittà, M; Brunel, N; Volterra, A

    2016-05-26

    Synaptic plasticity is the capacity of a preexisting connection between two neurons to change in strength as a function of neural activity. Because synaptic plasticity is the major candidate mechanism for learning and memory, the elucidation of its constituting mechanisms is of crucial importance in many aspects of normal and pathological brain function. In particular, a prominent aspect that remains debated is how the plasticity mechanisms, that encompass a broad spectrum of temporal and spatial scales, come to play together in a concerted fashion. Here we review and discuss evidence that pinpoints to a possible non-neuronal, glial candidate for such orchestration: the regulation of synaptic plasticity by astrocytes. Copyright © 2015 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Synaptic Transmission Optimization Predicts Expression Loci of Long-Term Plasticity.

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    Costa, Rui Ponte; Padamsey, Zahid; D'Amour, James A; Emptage, Nigel J; Froemke, Robert C; Vogels, Tim P

    2017-09-27

    Long-term modifications of neuronal connections are critical for reliable memory storage in the brain. However, their locus of expression-pre- or postsynaptic-is highly variable. Here we introduce a theoretical framework in which long-term plasticity performs an optimization of the postsynaptic response statistics toward a given mean with minimal variance. Consequently, the state of the synapse at the time of plasticity induction determines the ratio of pre- and postsynaptic modifications. Our theory explains the experimentally observed expression loci of the hippocampal and neocortical synaptic potentiation studies we examined. Moreover, the theory predicts presynaptic expression of long-term depression, consistent with experimental observations. At inhibitory synapses, the theory suggests a statistically efficient excitatory-inhibitory balance in which changes in inhibitory postsynaptic response statistics specifically target the mean excitation. Our results provide a unifying theory for understanding the expression mechanisms and functions of long-term synaptic transmission plasticity. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. The origin of the term plasticity in the neurosciences: Ernesto Lugaro and chemical synaptic transmission.

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    Berlucchi, Giovanni

    2002-09-01

    The Italian psychiatrist Ernesto Lugaro can be regarded as responsible for introducing the term plasticity into the neurosciences as early as 1906. By this term he meant that throughout life the anatomo-functional relations between neurons can change in an adaptive fashion to enable psychic maturation, learning, and even functional recovery after brain damage. Lugaro's concept of plasticity was strongly inspired by a neural hypothesis of learning and memory put forward in 1893 by his teacher Eugenio Tanzi. Tanzi postulated that practice and experience promote neuronal growth and shorten the minute spatial gaps between functionally associated neurons, thus facilitating their interactions. In addition to discovering the cerebellar cells known by his name and advancing profound speculations about the functions of the glia, Lugaro lucidly foresaw the chemical nature of synaptic transmission in the central nervous system, and was the first to propose the usage of the terms "nervous conduction" and "nervous transmission" in their currently accepted meaning.

  20. Brain extracellular matrix affects AMPA receptor lateral mobility and short-term synaptic plasticity.

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    Frischknecht, Renato; Heine, Martin; Perrais, David; Seidenbecher, Constanze I; Choquet, Daniel; Gundelfinger, Eckart D

    2009-07-01

    Many synapses in the mature CNS are wrapped by a dense extracellular matrix (ECM). Using single-particle tracking and fluorescence recovery after photobleaching, we found that this net-like ECM formed surface compartments on rat primary neurons that acted as lateral diffusion barriers for AMPA-type glutamate receptors. Enzymatic removal of the ECM increased extrasynaptic receptor diffusion and the exchange of synaptic AMPA receptors. Whole-cell patch-clamp recording revealed an increased paired-pulse ratio as a functional consequence of ECM removal. These results suggest that the surface compartments formed by the ECM hinder lateral diffusion of AMPA receptors and may therefore modulate short-term synaptic plasticity.

  1. Synaptic Plasticity, Metaplasticity and Depression.

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    Vose, Linnea R; Stanton, Patric K

    2017-01-01

    The development of a persistent depressive affective state has for some time been thought to result from persistent alterations in neurotransmitter-mediated synaptic transmission. While the identity of those transmitters has changed over the years, the literature has lacked mechanistic connections between the neurophysiological mechanisms they regulate, and how these mechanisms alter neuronal function, and, hence, affective homeostasis. This review will examine recent work that suggests that both long-term activity-dependent changes in synaptic strength ("plasticity"), and shifting set points for the ease of induction of future long-term changes ("metaplasticity"), may be critical to establishing and reversing a depressive behavioral state. Activitydependent long-term synaptic plasticity involves both strengthening and weakening of synaptic connections associated with a dizzying array of neurochemical alterations that include synaptic insertion and removal of a number of subtypes of AMPA, NMDA and metabotropic glutamate receptors, changes in presynaptic glutamate release, and structural changes in dendritic spines. Cellular mechanisms of metaplasticity are far less well understood. Here, we will review the growing evidence that long-term synaptic changes in glutamatergic transmission, in brain regions that regulate mood, are key determinants of affective homeostasis and therapeutic targets with immense potential for drug development.

  2. Synaptic AMPA receptor plasticity and behavior

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kessels, Helmut W.; Malinow, Roberto

    2009-01-01

    The ability to change behavior likely depends on the selective strengthening and weakening of brain synapses. The cellular models of synaptic plasticity, long-term potentiation (LTP) and depression (LTD) of synaptic strength, can be expressed by the synaptic insertion or removal of AMPA receptors

  3. Vitamin A deprivation results in reversible loss of hippocampal long-term synaptic plasticity.

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    Misner, D L; Jacobs, S; Shimizu, Y; de Urquiza, A M; Solomin, L; Perlmann, T; De Luca, L M; Stevens, C F; Evans, R M

    2001-09-25

    Despite its long history, the central effects of progressive depletion of vitamin A in adult mice has not been previously described. An examination of vitamin-deprived animals revealed a progressive and ultimately profound impairment of hippocampal CA1 long-term potentiation and a virtual abolishment of long-term depression. Importantly, these losses are fully reversible by dietary vitamin A replenishment in vivo or direct application of all trans-retinoic acid to acute hippocampal slices. We find retinoid responsive transgenes to be highly active in the hippocampus, and by using dissected explants, we show the hippocampus to be a site of robust synthesis of bioactive retinoids. In aggregate, these results demonstrate that vitamin A and its active derivatives function as essential competence factors for long-term synaptic plasticity within the adult brain, and suggest that key genes required for long-term potentiation and long-term depression are retinoid dependent. These data suggest a major mental consequence for the hundreds of millions of adults and children who are vitamin A deficient.

  4. Long-Term Exercise Is Needed to Enhance Synaptic Plasticity in the Hippocampus

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    Patten, Anna R.; Sickmann, Helle; Hryciw, Brett N.; Kucharsky, Tessa; Parton, Roberta; Kernick, Aimee; Christie, Brian R.

    2013-01-01

    Exercise can have many benefits for the body, but it also benefits the brain by increasing neurogenesis, synaptic plasticity, and performance on learning and memory tasks. The period of exercise needed to realize the structural and functional benefits for the brain have not been well delineated, and previous studies have used periods of exercise…

  5. Simulating the Effects of Short-Term Synaptic Plasticity on Postsynaptic Dynamics in the Globus Pallidus

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    Moran eBrody

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available The rat globus pallidus (GP is one of the nuclei of the basal ganglia and plays an important role in a variety of motor and cognitive processes. In vivo studies have shown that repetitive stimulation evokes complex modulations of GP activity. In vitro and computational studies have suggested that short-term synaptic plasticity (STP could be one of the underlying mechanisms. The current study used simplified single compartment modeling to explore the possible effect of STP on the activity of GP neurons during low and high frequency stimulation. To do this we constructed a model of a GP neuron connected to a small network of neurons from the three major input sources to GP neurons: striatum (Str, subthalamic nucleus (STN and GP collaterals. All synapses were implemented with a kinetic model of STP. The in vitro recordings of responses to low frequency repetitive stimulation were highly reconstructed, including rate changes and locking to the stimulus. Mainly involved were fast forms of plasticity which have been found at these synapses. . The simulations were qualitatively compared to a data set previously recorded in vitro in our lab. Reconstructions of experimental responses to high frequency stimulation required adding slower forms of plasticity to the STN and GP collateral synapses, as well as adding metabotropic receptors to the STN-GP synapses. These finding suggest the existence of as yet unreported slower short-term dynamics in the GP. The computational model made additional predictions about GP activity during low and high frequency stimulation that may further our understanding of the mechanisms underlying repetative stimulation of the GP.

  6. Mechanisms of translation control underlying long-lasting synaptic plasticity and the consolidation of long-term memory.

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    Santini, Emanuela; Huynh, Thu N; Klann, Eric

    2014-01-01

    The complexity of memory formation and its persistence is a phenomenon that has been studied intensely for centuries. Memory exists in many forms and is stored in various brain regions. Generally speaking, memories are reorganized into broadly distributed cortical networks over time through systems level consolidation. At the cellular level, storage of information is believed to initially occur via altered synaptic strength by processes such as long-term potentiation. New protein synthesis is required for long-lasting synaptic plasticity as well as for the formation of long-term memory. The mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) is a critical regulator of cap-dependent protein synthesis and is required for numerous forms of long-lasting synaptic plasticity and long-term memory. As such, the study of mTORC1 and protein factors that control translation initiation and elongation has enhanced our understanding of how the process of protein synthesis is regulated during memory formation. Herein we discuss the molecular mechanisms that regulate protein synthesis as well as pharmacological and genetic manipulations that demonstrate the requirement for proper translational control in long-lasting synaptic plasticity and long-term memory formation. © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Presynaptic and postsynaptic mechanisms of synaptic plasticity and metaplasticity during intermediate-term memory formation in Aplysia.

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    Antonov, Igor; Kandel, Eric R; Hawkins, Robert D

    2010-04-21

    Synaptic plasticity and learning involve different mechanisms depending on the following: (1) the stage of plasticity and (2) the history of plasticity, or metaplasticity. However, little is known about how these two factors are related. We have addressed that question by examining mechanisms of synaptic plasticity during short-term and intermediate-term behavioral sensitization and dishabituation in a semi-intact preparation of the Aplysia siphon-withdrawal reflex. Dishabituation differs from sensitization in that it is preceded by habituation, and is thus a paradigm for metaplasticity. We find that whereas facilitation during short-term sensitization by one tail shock involves presynaptic covalent modifications by protein kinase A (PKA) and CamKII, facilitation during intermediate-term sensitization by four shocks involves both presynaptic (PKA, CaMKII) and postsynaptic (Ca(2+), CaMKII) covalent modifications, as well as both presynaptic and postsynaptic protein synthesis. The facilitation also involves presynaptic spike broadening 2.5 min after either one or four shocks, but not at later times. Dishabituation by four shocks differs from sensitization in several ways. First, it does not involve PKA or CaMKII, but rather involves presynaptic PKC. In addition, unlike sensitization with the same shock, dishabituation by four shocks does not involve protein synthesis or presynaptic spike broadening, and it also does not involve postsynaptic Ca(2+). These results demonstrate that not only the mechanisms but also the site of plasticity depend on both the stage of plasticity and metaplasticity during memory formation.

  8. Cell-Specific PKM Isoforms Contribute to the Maintenance of Different Forms of Persistent Long-Term Synaptic Plasticity.

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    Hu, Jiangyuan; Adler, Kerry; Farah, Carole Abi; Hastings, Margaret H; Sossin, Wayne S; Schacher, Samuel

    2017-03-08

    Multiple kinase activations contribute to long-term synaptic plasticity, a cellular mechanism mediating long-term memory. The sensorimotor synapse of Aplysia expresses different forms of long-term facilitation (LTF)-nonassociative and associative LTF-that require the timely activation of kinases, including protein kinase C (PKC). It is not known which PKC isoforms in the sensory neuron or motor neuron L7 are required to sustain each form of LTF. We show that different PKMs, the constitutively active isoforms of PKCs generated by calpain cleavage, in the sensory neuron and L7 are required to maintain each form of LTF. Different PKMs or calpain isoforms were blocked by overexpressing specific dominant-negative constructs in either presynaptic or postsynaptic neurons. Blocking either PKM Apl I in L7, or PKM Apl II or PKM Apl III in the sensory neuron 2 d after 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) treatment reversed persistent nonassociative LTF. In contrast, blocking either PKM Apl II or PKM Apl III in L7, or PKM Apl II in the sensory neuron 2 d after paired stimuli reversed persistent associative LTF. Blocking either classical calpain or atypical small optic lobe (SOL) calpain 2 d after 5-HT treatment or paired stimuli did not disrupt the maintenance of persistent LTF. Soon after 5-HT treatment or paired stimuli, however, blocking classical calpain inhibited the expression of persistent associative LTF, while blocking SOL calpain inhibited the expression of persistent nonassociative LTF. Our data suggest that different stimuli activate different calpains that generate specific sets of PKMs in each neuron whose constitutive activities sustain long-term synaptic plasticity. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Persistent synaptic plasticity contributes to the maintenance of long-term memory. Although various kinases such as protein kinase C (PKC) contribute to the expression of long-term plasticity, little is known about how constitutive activation of specific kinase isoforms sustains long-term

  9. Modelling bidirectional modulations in synaptic plasticity: A biochemical pathway model to understand the emergence of long term potentiation (LTP) and long term depression (LTD).

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Yao; Kulasiri, Don; Samarasinghe, Sandhya

    2016-08-21

    Synaptic plasticity induces bidirectional modulations of the postsynaptic response following a synaptic transmission. The long term forms of synaptic plasticity, named long term potentiation (LTP) and long term depression (LTD), are critical for the antithetic functions of the memory system, memory formation and removal, respectively. A common Ca(2+) signalling upstream triggers both LTP and LTD, and the critical proteins and factors coordinating the LTP/LTD inductions are not well understood. We develop an integrated model based on the sub-models of the indispensable synaptic proteins in the emergence of synaptic plasticity to validate and understand their potential roles in the expression of synaptic plasticity. The model explains Ca(2+)/calmodulin (CaM) complex dependent coordination of LTP/LTD expressions by the interactions among the indispensable proteins using the experimentally estimated kinetic parameters. Analysis of the integrated model provides us with insights into the effective timescales of the key proteins and we conclude that the CaM pool size is critical for the coordination between LTP/LTD expressions. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Diacylglycerol Kinases in the Coordination of Synaptic Plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Dongwon; Kim, Eunjoon; Tanaka-Yamamoto, Keiko

    2016-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity is activity-dependent modification of the efficacy of synaptic transmission. Although, detailed mechanisms underlying synaptic plasticity are diverse and vary at different types of synapses, diacylglycerol (DAG)-associated signaling has been considered as an important regulator of many forms of synaptic plasticity, including long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD). Recent evidences indicate that DAG kinases (DGKs), which phosphorylate DAG to phosphatidic acid to terminate DAG signaling, are important regulators of LTP and LTD, as supported by the results from mice lacking specific DGK isoforms. This review will summarize these studies and discuss how specific DGK isoforms distinctly regulate different forms of synaptic plasticity at pre- and postsynaptic sites. In addition, we propose a general role of DGKs as coordinators of synaptic plasticity that make local synaptic environments more permissive for synaptic plasticity by regulating DAG concentration and interacting with other synaptic proteins.

  11. Synaptic Plasticity and Translation Initiation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klann, Eric; Antion, Marcia D.; Banko, Jessica L.; Hou, Lingfei

    2004-01-01

    It is widely accepted that protein synthesis, including local protein synthesis at synapses, is required for several forms of synaptic plasticity. Local protein synthesis enables synapses to control synaptic strength independent of the cell body via rapid protein production from pre-existing mRNA. Therefore, regulation of translation initiation is…

  12. Klotho regulates CA1 hippocampal synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Qin; Vo, Hai T; Wang, Jing; Fox-Quick, Stephanie; Dobrunz, Lynn E; King, Gwendalyn D

    2017-04-07

    Global klotho overexpression extends lifespan while global klotho-deficiency shortens it. As well, klotho protein manipulations inversely regulate cognitive function. Mice without klotho develop rapid onset cognitive impairment before they are 2months old. Meanwhile, adult mice overexpressing klotho show enhanced cognitive function, particularly in hippocampal-dependent tasks. The cognitive enhancing effects of klotho extend to humans with a klotho polymorphism that increases circulating klotho and executive function. To affect cognitive function, klotho could act in or on the synapse to modulate synaptic transmission or plasticity. However, it is not yet known if klotho is located at synapses, and little is known about its effects on synaptic function. To test this, we fractionated hippocampi and detected klotho expression in both pre and post-synaptic compartments. We find that loss of klotho enhances both pre and post-synaptic measures of CA1 hippocampal synaptic plasticity at 5weeks of age. However, a rapid loss of synaptic enhancement occurs such that by 7weeks, when mice are cognitively impaired, there is no difference from wild-type controls. Klotho overexpressing mice show no early life effects on synaptic plasticity, but decreased CA1 hippocampal long-term potentiation was measured at 6months of age. Together these data suggest that klotho affects cognition, at least in part, by regulating hippocampal synaptic plasticity. Copyright © 2017 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Genetic deletion of melanin-concentrating hormone neurons impairs hippocampal short-term synaptic plasticity and hippocampal-dependent forms of short-term memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Barillier, Léa; Léger, Lucienne; Luppi, Pierre-Hervé; Fort, Patrice; Malleret, Gaël; Salin, Paul-Antoine

    2015-11-01

    The cognitive role of melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH) neurons, a neuronal population located in the mammalian postero-lateral hypothalamus sending projections to all cortical areas, remains poorly understood. Mainly activated during paradoxical sleep (PS), MCH neurons have been implicated in sleep regulation. The genetic deletion of the only known MCH receptor in rodent leads to an impairment of hippocampal dependent forms of memory and to an alteration of hippocampal long-term synaptic plasticity. By using MCH/ataxin3 mice, a genetic model characterized by a selective deletion of MCH neurons in the adult, we investigated the role of MCH neurons in hippocampal synaptic plasticity and hippocampal-dependent forms of memory. MCH/ataxin3 mice exhibited a deficit in the early part of both long-term potentiation and depression in the CA1 area of the hippocampus. Post-tetanic potentiation (PTP) was diminished while synaptic depression induced by repetitive stimulation was enhanced suggesting an alteration of pre-synaptic forms of short-term plasticity in these mice. Behaviorally, MCH/ataxin3 mice spent more time and showed a higher level of hesitation as compared to their controls in performing a short-term memory T-maze task, displayed retardation in acquiring a reference memory task in a Morris water maze, and showed a habituation deficit in an open field task. Deletion of MCH neurons could thus alter spatial short-term memory by impairing short-term plasticity in the hippocampus. Altogether, these findings could provide a cellular mechanism by which PS may facilitate memory encoding. Via MCH neuron activation, PS could prepare the day's learning by increasing and modulating short-term synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  14. Short-term exposure to enriched environment rescues chronic stress-induced impaired hippocampal synaptic plasticity, anxiety, and memory deficits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhagya, Venkanna Rao; Srikumar, Bettadapura N; Veena, Jayagopalan; Shankaranarayana Rao, Byrathnahalli S

    2017-08-01

    Exposure to prolonged stress results in structural and functional alterations in the hippocampus including reduced long-term potentiation (LTP), neurogenesis, spatial learning and working memory impairments, and enhanced anxiety-like behavior. On the other hand, enriched environment (EE) has beneficial effects on hippocampal structure and function, such as improved memory, increased hippocampal neurogenesis, and progressive synaptic plasticity. It is unclear whether exposure to short-term EE for 10 days can overcome restraint stress-induced cognitive deficits and impaired hippocampal plasticity. Consequently, the present study explored the beneficial effects of short-term EE on chronic stress-induced impaired LTP, working memory, and anxiety-like behavior. Male Wistar rats were subjected to chronic restraint stress (6 hr/day) over a period of 21 days, and then they were exposed to EE (6 hr/day) for 10 days. Restraint stress reduced hippocampal CA1-LTP, increased anxiety-like symptoms in elevated plus maze, and impaired working memory in T-maze task. Remarkably, EE facilitated hippocampal LTP, improved working memory performance, and completely overcame the effect of chronic stress on anxiety behavior. In conclusion, exposure to EE can bring out positive effects on synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus and thereby elicit its beneficial effects on cognitive functions. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. Activation of the CREB/c-Fos Pathway during Long-Term Synaptic Plasticity in the Cerebellum Granular Layer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gandolfi, Daniela; Cerri, Silvia; Mapelli, Jonathan; Polimeni, Mariarosa; Tritto, Simona; Fuzzati-Armentero, Marie-Therese; Bigiani, Albertino; Blandini, Fabio; Mapelli, Lisa; D’Angelo, Egidio

    2017-01-01

    The induction of long-term potentiation and depression (LTP and LTD) is thought to trigger gene expression and protein synthesis, leading to consolidation of synaptic and neuronal changes. However, while LTP and LTD have been proposed to play important roles for sensori-motor learning in the cerebellum granular layer, their association with these mechanisms remained unclear. Here, we have investigated phosphorylation of the cAMP-responsive element binding protein (CREB) and activation of the immediate early gene c-Fos pathway following the induction of synaptic plasticity by theta-burst stimulation (TBS) in acute cerebellar slices. LTP and LTD were localized using voltage-sensitive dye imaging (VSDi). At two time points following TBS (15 min and 120 min), corresponding to the early and late phases of plasticity, slices were fixed and processed to evaluate CREB phosphorylation (P-CREB) and c-FOS protein levels, as well as Creb and c-Fos mRNA expression. High levels of P-CREB and Creb/c-Fos were detected before those of c-FOS, as expected if CREB phosphorylation triggered gene expression followed by protein synthesis. No differences between control slices and slices stimulated with TBS were observed in the presence of an N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) antagonist. Interestingly, activation of the CREB/c-Fos system showed a relevant degree of colocalization with long-term synaptic plasticity. These results show that NMDAR-dependent plasticity at the cerebellum input stage bears about transcriptional and post-transcriptional processes potentially contributing to cerebellar learning and memory consolidation. PMID:28701927

  16. Decreased synaptic plasticity in the medial prefrontal cortex underlies short-term memory deficits in 6-OHDA-lesioned rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matheus, Filipe C; Rial, Daniel; Real, Joana I; Lemos, Cristina; Ben, Juliana; Guaita, Gisele O; Pita, Inês R; Sequeira, Ana C; Pereira, Frederico C; Walz, Roger; Takahashi, Reinaldo N; Bertoglio, Leandro J; Da Cunha, Cláudio; Cunha, Rodrigo A; Prediger, Rui D

    2016-03-15

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is characterized by motor dysfunction associated with dopaminergic degeneration in the dorsolateral striatum (DLS). However, motor symptoms in PD are often preceded by short-term memory deficits, which have been argued to involve deregulation of medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). We now used a 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) rat PD model to explore if alterations of synaptic plasticity in DLS and mPFC underlie short-term memory impairments in PD prodrome. The bilateral injection of 6-OHDA (20μg/hemisphere) in the DLS caused a marked loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra (>80%) and decreased monoamine levels in the striatum and PFC, accompanied by motor deficits evaluated after 21 days in the open field and accelerated rotarod. A lower dose of 6-OHDA (10μg/hemisphere) only induced a partial degeneration (about 60%) of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra with no gross motor impairments, thus mimicking an early premotor stage of PD. Notably, 6-OHDA (10μg)-lesioned rats displayed decreased monoamine levels in the PFC as well as short-term memory deficits evaluated in the novel object discrimination and in the modified Y-maze tasks; this was accompanied by a selective decrease in the amplitude of long-term potentiation in the mPFC, but not in DLS, without changes of synaptic transmission in either brain regions. These results indicate that the short-term memory dysfunction predating the motor alterations in the 6-OHDA model of PD is associated with selective changes of information processing in PFC circuits, typified by persistent changes of synaptic plasticity. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Diversity in Long-Term Synaptic Plasticity at Inhibitory Synapses of Striatal Spiny Neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rueda-Orozco, Pavel E.; Mendoza, Ernesto; Hernandez, Ricardo; Aceves, Jose J.; Ibanez-Sandoval, Osvaldo; Galarraga, Elvira; Bargas, Jose

    2009-01-01

    Procedural memories and habits are posited to be stored in the basal ganglia, whose intrinsic circuitries possess important inhibitory connections arising from striatal spiny neurons. However, no information about long-term plasticity at these synapses is available. Therefore, this work describes a novel postsynaptically dependent long-term…

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jenia eBugaysen

    2011-03-01

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

  19. [Astrocytes and microglia: active players in synaptic plasticity].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ronzano, Rémi

    2017-12-01

    Synaptic plasticity consists in a change in structure and composition of presynaptic and postsynaptic compartments. For a long time, synaptic plasticity had been thought as a neuronal mechanism only under the control of neural network activity. However, recently, with the growing knowledge about glial physiology, plasticity has been reviewed as a mechanism influenced by the synaptic environment. Thus, it appears that astrocytes and microglia modulate these mechanisms modifying neural environment by clearance of neurotransmitters, releasing essential factors and modulating inflammation. Moreover, glia can change its own activity and the expression pattern of many factors that modulate synaptic plasticity according to the environment. Hence, these populations of "non-neuronal" cells in the central nervous system seem to be active players in synaptic plasticity. This review discusses how glia modulates synaptic plasticity focusing on long-term potentiation and depression, and questions the role of the signaling processes between astrocytes and microglia in these mechanisms. © 2017 médecine/sciences – Inserm.

  20. Astrocytes and synaptic plasticity in health and disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, A; Abraham, Wickliffe C

    2017-06-01

    Activity-dependent synaptic plasticity phenomena such as long-term potentiation and long-term depression are candidate mechanisms for storing information in the brain. Regulation of synaptic plasticity is critical for healthy cognition and learning and this is provided in part by metaplasticity, which can act to maintain synaptic transmission within a dynamic range and potentially prevent excitotoxicity. Metaplasticity mechanisms also allow neurons to integrate plasticity-associated signals over time. Interestingly, astrocytes appear to be critical for certain forms of synaptic plasticity and metaplasticity mechanisms. Synaptic dysfunction is increasingly viewed as an early feature of AD that is correlated with the severity of cognitive decline, and the development of these pathologies is correlated with a rise in reactive astrocytes. This review focuses on the contributions of astrocytes to synaptic plasticity and metaplasticity in normal tissue, and addresses whether astroglial pathology may lead to aberrant engagement of these mechanisms in neurological diseases such as Alzheimer's disease.

  1. Layer-Dependent Short-Term Synaptic Plasticity Between Excitatory Neurons in the C2 Barrel Column of Mouse Primary Somatosensory Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lefort, Sandrine; Petersen, Carl C H

    2017-07-01

    Neurons process information through spatiotemporal integration of synaptic input. Synaptic transmission between any given pair of neurons is typically a dynamic process with presynaptic action potentials (APs) evoking depressing or facilitating postsynaptic potentials when presynaptic APs occur within hundreds of milliseconds of each other. In order to understand neocortical function, it is therefore important to investigate such short-term synaptic plasticity at synapses between different types of neocortical neurons. Here, we examine short-term synaptic dynamics between excitatory neurons in different layers of the mouse C2 barrel column through in vitro whole-cell recordings. We find layer-dependent short-term plasticity, with depression being dominant at many synaptic connections. Interestingly, however, presynaptic layer 2 neurons predominantly give rise to facilitating excitatory synaptic output at short interspike intervals of 10 and 30 ms. Previous studies have found prominent burst firing of excitatory neurons in supragranular layers of awake mice. The facilitation we observed in the synaptic output of layer 2 may, therefore, be functionally relevant, possibly serving to enhance the postsynaptic impact of burst firing. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press.

  2. Hippocampal synaptic plasticity, spatial memory and anxiety

    OpenAIRE

    Bannerman, David M.; Sprengel, Rolf; Sanderson, David J.; McHugh, Stephen B.; Rawlins, J. Nicholas P.; Monyer, Hannah; Seeburg, Peter H.

    2014-01-01

    Recent studies using transgenic mice lacking NMDA receptors in the hippocampus challenge the long-standing hypothesis that hippocampal long-term potentiation-like mechanisms underlie the encoding and storage of associative long-term spatial memories. However, it may not be the synaptic plasticity-dependent memory hypothesis that is wrong; instead, it may be the role of the hippocampus that needs to be re-examined. We present an account of hippocampal function that explains its role in both me...

  3. Disruption of Slc4a10 augments neuronal excitability and modulates synaptic short-term plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne eSinning

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Slc4a10 is a Na+-coupled Cl--HCO3- exchanger, which is expressed in principal and inhibitory neurons as well as in choroid plexus epithelial cells of the brain. Slc4a10 knockout mice have collapsed brain ventricles and display an increased seizure threshold, while heterozygous deletions in man have been associated with idiopathic epilepsy and other neurological symptoms. To further characterize the role of Slc4a10 for network excitability, we compared input-output relations as well as short and long term changes of evoked field potentials in Slc4a10 knockout and wildtype mice. While responses of CA1 pyramidal neurons to stimulation of Schaffer collaterals were increased in Slc4a10 knockout mice, evoked field potentials did not differ between genotypes in the stratum radiatum or the neocortical areas analyzed. Paired pulse facilitation was diminished in the hippocampus upon disruption of Slc4a10 and paired pulse depression was increased in the neocortex. Though short term plasticity is modulated via Slc4a10, long term potentiation appears independent of Slc4a10. Our data support that Slc4a10 dampens neuronal excitability and thus sheds light on the pathophysiology of SLC4A10 associated pathologies.

  4. Impaired synaptic plasticity in RASopathies: a mini-review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mainberger, Florian; Langer, Susanne; Mall, Volker; Jung, Nikolai H

    2016-10-01

    Synaptic plasticity in the form of long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) is considered to be the neurophysiological correlate of learning and memory. Impairments are discussed to be one of the underlying pathophysiological mechanisms of developmental disorders. In so-called RASopathies [e.g., neurofibromatosis 1 (NF1)], neurocognitive impairments are frequent and are affected by components of the RAS pathway which lead to impairments in synaptic plasticity. Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) provides a non-invasive method to investigate synaptic plasticity in humans. Here, we review studies using TMS to evaluate synaptic plasticity in patients with RASopathies. Patients with NF1 and Noonan syndrome (NS) showed reduced cortical LTP-like synaptic plasticity. In contrast, increased LTP-like synaptic plasticity has been shown in Costello syndrome. Notably, lovastatin normalized impaired LTP-like plasticity and increased intracortical inhibition in patients with NF1. TMS has been shown to be a safe and efficient method to investigate synaptic plasticity and intracortical inhibition in patients with RASopathies. Deeper insights in impairments of synaptic plasticity in RASopathies could help to develop new options for the therapy of learning deficits in these patients.

  5. [Involvement of aquaporin-4 in synaptic plasticity, learning and memory].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Xin; Gao, Jian-Feng

    2017-06-25

    Aquaporin-4 (AQP-4) is the predominant water channel in the central nervous system (CNS) and primarily expressed in astrocytes. Astrocytes have been generally believed to play important roles in regulating synaptic plasticity and information processing. However, the role of AQP-4 in regulating synaptic plasticity, learning and memory, cognitive function is only beginning to be investigated. It is well known that synaptic plasticity is the prime candidate for mediating of learning and memory. Long term potentiation (LTP) and long term depression (LTD) are two forms of synaptic plasticity, and they share some but not all the properties and mechanisms. Hippocampus is a part of limbic system that is particularly important in regulation of learning and memory. This article is to review some research progresses of the function of AQP-4 in synaptic plasticity, learning and memory, and propose the possible role of AQP-4 as a new target in the treatment of cognitive dysfunction.

  6. Synaptic Plasticity onto Dopamine Neurons Shapes Fear Learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pignatelli, Marco; Umanah, George Kwabena Essien; Ribeiro, Sissi Palma; Chen, Rong; Karuppagounder, Senthilkumar Senthil; Yau, Hau-Jie; Eacker, Stephen; Dawson, Valina Lynn; Dawson, Ted Murray; Bonci, Antonello

    2017-01-18

    Fear learning is a fundamental behavioral process that requires dopamine (DA) release. Experience-dependent synaptic plasticity occurs on DA neurons while an organism is engaged in aversive experiences. However, whether synaptic plasticity onto DA neurons is causally involved in aversion learning is unknown. Here, we show that a stress priming procedure enhances fear learning by engaging VTA synaptic plasticity. Moreover, we took advantage of the ability of the ATPase Thorase to regulate the internalization of AMPA receptors (AMPARs) in order to selectively manipulate glutamatergic synaptic plasticity on DA neurons. Genetic ablation of Thorase in DAT + neurons produced increased AMPAR surface expression and function that lead to impaired induction of both long-term depression (LTD) and long-term potentiation (LTP). Strikingly, animals lacking Thorase in DAT + neurons expressed greater associative learning in a fear conditioning paradigm. In conclusion, our data provide a novel, causal link between synaptic plasticity onto DA neurons and fear learning. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  7. Role of Drebrin in Synaptic Plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sekino, Yuko; Koganezawa, Noriko; Mizui, Toshiyuki; Shirao, Tomoaki

    2017-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity underlies higher brain function such as learning and memory, and the actin cytoskeleton in dendritic spines composing excitatory postsynaptic sites plays a pivotal role in synaptic plasticity. In this chapter, we review the role of drebrin in the regulation of the actin cytoskeleton during synaptic plasticity, under long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD). Dendritic spines have two F-actin pools, drebrin-decorated stable F-actin (DF-actin) and drebrin-free dynamic F-actin (FF-actin). Resting dendritic spines change their shape, but are fairly constant over time at steady state because of the presence of DF-actin. Accumulation of DF-actin is inversely regulated by the intracellular Ca 2+ concentration. However, LTP and LTD stimulation induce Ca 2+ influx through N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors into the potentiated spines, resulting in drebrin exodus via myosin II ATPase activation. The potentiated spines change to excited state because of the decrease in DF-actin and thus change their shape robustly. In LTP, the Ca 2+ increase via NMDA receptors soon returns to the basal level, and α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptor (AMPAR) expression at the postsynaptic membrane is increased. The Ca 2+ recovery and AMPAR increase coordinately induce the re-accumulation of DF-actin and change the dendritic spines from the excited state to steady state during LTP maintenance. During LTD, the prolonged intracellular Ca 2+ increase inhibits the re-accumulation of DF-actin, resulting in facilitation of AMPAR endocytosis. Because of the positive feedback loop of the AMPAR decrease and drebrin re-accumulation inhibition, the dendritic spines are instable during LTD maintenance. Taken together, we propose the presence of resilient spines at steady state and plastic spines at excited state and discuss the physiological and pathological relevance of the two-state model to synaptic plasticity.

  8. Experience-dependent homeostatic synaptic plasticity in neocortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitt, Jessica L; Petrus, Emily; Lee, Hey-Kyoung

    2014-03-01

    The organism's ability to adapt to the changing sensory environment is due in part to the ability of the nervous system to change with experience. Input and synapse specific Hebbian plasticity, such as long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD), are critical for sculpting the nervous system to wire its circuit in tune with the environment and for storing memories. However, these synaptic plasticity mechanisms are innately unstable and require another mode of plasticity that maintains homeostasis to allow neurons to function within a desired dynamic range. Several modes of homeostatic adaptation are known, some of which work at the synaptic level. This review will focus on the known mechanisms of experience-induced homeostatic synaptic plasticity in the neocortex and their potential function in sensory cortex plasticity. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'Homeostatic Synaptic Plasticity'. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. T-type calcium channels in synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leresche, Nathalie; Lambert, Régis C

    2017-03-04

    The role of T-type calcium currents is rarely considered in the extensive literature covering the mechanisms of long-term synaptic plasticity. This situation reflects the lack of suitable T-type channel antagonists that till recently has hampered investigations of the functional roles of these channels. However, with the development of new pharmacological and genetic tools, a clear involvement of T-type channels in synaptic plasticity is starting to emerge. Here, we review a number of studies showing that T-type channels participate to numerous homo- and hetero-synaptic plasticity mechanisms that involve different molecular partners and both pre- and post-synaptic modifications. The existence of T-channel dependent and independent plasticity at the same synapse strongly suggests a subcellular localization of these channels and their partners that allows specific interactions. Moreover, we illustrate the functional importance of T-channel dependent synaptic plasticity in neocortex and thalamus.

  10. Zif268/Egr1 gain of function facilitates hippocampal synaptic plasticity and long-term spatial recognition memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Penke, Zsuzsa; Morice, Elise; Veyrac, Alexandra; Gros, Alexandra; Chagneau, Carine; LeBlanc, Pascale; Samson, Nathalie; Baumgärtel, Karsten; Mansuy, Isabelle M; Davis, Sabrina; Laroche, Serge

    2014-01-05

    It is well established that Zif268/Egr1, a member of the Egr family of transcription factors, is critical for the consolidation of several forms of memory; however, it is as yet uncertain whether increasing expression of Zif268 in neurons can facilitate memory formation. Here, we used an inducible transgenic mouse model to specifically induce Zif268 overexpression in forebrain neurons and examined the effect on recognition memory and hippocampal synaptic transmission and plasticity. We found that Zif268 overexpression during the establishment of memory for objects did not change the ability to form a long-term memory of objects, but enhanced the capacity to form a long-term memory of the spatial location of objects. This enhancement was paralleled by increased long-term potentiation in the dentate gyrus of the hippocampus and by increased activity-dependent expression of Zif268 and selected Zif268 target genes. These results provide novel evidence that transcriptional mechanisms engaging Zif268 contribute to determining the strength of newly encoded memories.

  11. CDK5 downregulation enhances synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Posada-Duque, Rafael Andrés; Ramirez, Omar; Härtel, Steffen; Inestrosa, Nibaldo C; Bodaleo, Felipe; González-Billault, Christian; Kirkwood, Alfredo; Cardona-Gómez, Gloria Patricia

    2017-01-01

    CDK5 is a serine/threonine kinase that is involved in the normal function of the adult brain and plays a role in neurotransmission and synaptic plasticity. However, its over-regulation has been associated with Tau hyperphosphorylation and cognitive deficits. Our previous studies have demonstrated that CDK5 targeting using shRNA-miR provides neuroprotection and prevents cognitive deficits. Dendritic spine morphogenesis and forms of long-term synaptic plasticity-such as long-term potentiation (LTP)-have been proposed as essential processes of neuroplasticity. However, whether CDK5 participates in these processes remains controversial and depends on the experimental model. Using wild-type mice that received injections of CDK5 shRNA-miR in CA1 showed an increased LTP and recovered the PPF in deficient LTP of APPswe/PS1Δ9 transgenic mice. On mature hippocampal neurons CDK5, shRNA-miR for 12 days induced increased dendritic protrusion morphogenesis, which was dependent on Rac activity. In addition, silencing of CDK5 increased BDNF expression, temporarily increased phosphorylation of CaMKII, ERK, and CREB; and facilitated calcium signaling in neurites. Together, our data suggest that CDK5 downregulation induces synaptic plasticity in mature neurons involving Ca 2+ signaling and BDNF/CREB activation.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bradley, Clarrisa A.; Peineau, Stéphane; Taghibiglou, Changiz; Nicolas, Celine S.; Whitcomb, Daniel J.; Bortolotto, Zuner A.; Kaang, Bong-Kiun; Cho, Kwangwook; Wang, Yu Tian; Collingridge, Graham L.

    2012-01-01

    Glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK-3) has many cellular functions. Recent evidence suggests that it plays a key role in certain types of synaptic plasticity, in particular a form of long-term depression (LTD) that is induced by the synaptic activation of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs). In the present article we summarize what is currently known concerning the roles of GSK-3 in synaptic plasticity at both glutamatergic and GABAergic synapses. We summarize its role in cognition and speculate on how alterations in the synaptic functioning of GSK-3 may be a major factor in certain neurodegenerative disorders. PMID:22363262

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clarrisa A Bradley

    2012-02-01

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

  14. Caffeine-mediated BDNF release regulates long-term synaptic plasticity through activation of IRS2 signaling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lao-Peregrín, Cristina; Ballesteros, Jesús Javier; Fernández, Miriam; Zamora-Moratalla, Alfonsa; Saavedra, Ana; Gómez Lázaro, María; Pérez-Navarro, Esther; Burks, Deborah; Martín, Eduardo D

    2017-11-01

    Caffeine has cognitive-enhancing properties with effects on learning and memory, concentration, arousal and mood. These effects imply changes at circuital and synaptic level, but the mechanism by which caffeine modifies synaptic plasticity remains elusive. Here we report that caffeine, at concentrations representing moderate to high levels of consumption in humans, induces an NMDA receptor-independent form of LTP ( CAF LTP) in the CA1 region of the hippocampus by promoting calcium-dependent secretion of BDNF, which subsequently activates TrkB-mediated signaling required for the expression of CAF LTP. Our data include the novel observation that insulin receptor substrate 2 (IRS2) is phosphorylated during induction of CAF LTP, a process that requires cytosolic free Ca 2+ . Consistent with the involvement of IRS2 signals in caffeine-mediated synaptic plasticity, phosphorylation of Akt (Ser473) in response to LTP induction is defective in Irs2 -/- mice, demonstrating that these plasticity changes are associated with downstream targets of the phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) pathway. These findings indicate that TrkB-IRS2 signals are essential for activation of PI3K during the induction of LTP by caffeine. © 2016 The Authors.Addiction Biology published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Society for the Study of Addiction.

  15. Synaptic Plasticity, Dementia and Alzheimer Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-01-01

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

  16. Taurine regulation of short term synaptic plasticity in fragile X mice

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    El Idrissi Abdeslem

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Fragile X Syndrome is the most common known genetic cause of autism. The Fmr1-KO mouse, lacks the fragile X mental retardation protein (FMRP, and is used as a model of the syndrome. The core behavioral deficits of autism may be conceptualized either as excessive adherence to patterns as seen in repetitive actions and aberrant language, or as insensitivity to subtle but socially important changes in patterns. The hippocampus receives information from the entorhinal cortex and plays a crucial role in the processing of patterned information. To gain more insight into the physiological function of FMRP and the neuronal mechanisms underlying fragile X syndrome, we examined the electrophysiological response of the hippocampus to pair pulse stimulation as a measure of patterned information processing and how it is affected in the Fmr1-KO mouse. Methods In this study, we used paired-pulse stimulation of the afferent perforant path and recorded from the CA1 region of the hippocampus. Two-month-old FVB/NJ male mice and age-matched Fmr1-KO mice were used in this study. Hippocampal slices were prepared, equilibrated in artificial cerebrospinal fluid (aCSF, and excitatory post synaptic potentials (EPSPs measured by stimulating the perforant path of the dentate gyrus (DG while recording from the molecular layer of CA1. Stimulation occurred by setting current and pulse width to evoke a fixed percentage of maximal EPSP amplitude. This stimulation paradigm allowed us to examine the processing capabilities of the hippocampus as a function of increasing interstimulus intervals (ISI and how taurine, a GABAA receptor agonist, affects such information processing. Results We found that hippocampal slices from wild type (WT showed pair-pulse facilitation at ISI of 100-300 ms whereas slices from Fmr1-KO brains showed a consistent pair-pulse depression at a comparable ISI. Addition of 10 μM taurine to WT slices resulted in a drastic decrease of the

  17. Pannexin 1 Regulates Bidirectional Hippocampal Synaptic Plasticity in Adult Mice

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    Alvaro O. Ardiles

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available The threshold for bidirectional modification of synaptic plasticity is known to be controlled by several factors, including the balance between protein phosphorylation and dephosphorylation, postsynaptic free Ca2+ concentration and NMDA receptor (NMDAR composition of GluN2 subunits. Pannexin 1 (Panx1, a member of the integral membrane protein family, has been shown to form non-selective channels and to regulate the induction of synaptic plasticity as well as hippocampal-dependent learning. Although Panx1 channels have been suggested to play a role in excitatory long-term potentiation (LTP, it remains unknown whether these channels also modulate long-term depression (LTD or the balance between both types of synaptic plasticity. To study how Panx1 contributes to excitatory synaptic efficacy, we examined the age-dependent effects of eliminating or blocking Panx1 channels on excitatory synaptic plasticity within the CA1 region of the mouse hippocampus. By using different protocols to induce bidirectional synaptic plasticity, Panx1 channel blockade or lack of Panx1 were found to enhance LTP, whereas both conditions precluded the induction of LTD in adults, but not in young animals. These findings suggest that Panx1 channels restrain the sliding threshold for the induction of synaptic plasticity and underlying brain mechanisms of learning and memory.

  18. Pannexin 1 regulates bidirectional hippocampal synaptic plasticity in adult mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ardiles, Alvaro O; Flores-Muñoz, Carolina; Toro-Ayala, Gabriela; Cárdenas, Ana M; Palacios, Adrian G; Muñoz, Pablo; Fuenzalida, Marco; Sáez, Juan C; Martínez, Agustín D

    2014-01-01

    The threshold for bidirectional modification of synaptic plasticity is known to be controlled by several factors, including the balance between protein phosphorylation and dephosphorylation, postsynaptic free Ca(2+) concentration and NMDA receptor (NMDAR) composition of GluN2 subunits. Pannexin 1 (Panx1), a member of the integral membrane protein family, has been shown to form non-selective channels and to regulate the induction of synaptic plasticity as well as hippocampal-dependent learning. Although Panx1 channels have been suggested to play a role in excitatory long-term potentiation (LTP), it remains unknown whether these channels also modulate long-term depression (LTD) or the balance between both types of synaptic plasticity. To study how Panx1 contributes to excitatory synaptic efficacy, we examined the age-dependent effects of eliminating or blocking Panx1 channels on excitatory synaptic plasticity within the CA1 region of the mouse hippocampus. By using different protocols to induce bidirectional synaptic plasticity, Panx1 channel blockade or lack of Panx1 were found to enhance LTP, whereas both conditions precluded the induction of LTD in adults, but not in young animals. These findings suggest that Panx1 channels restrain the sliding threshold for the induction of synaptic plasticity and underlying brain mechanisms of learning and memory.

  19. Filamentary Switching: Synaptic Plasticity through Device Volatility

    CERN Document Server

    La Barbera, Selina; Alibart, Fabien

    2015-01-01

    Replicating the computational functionalities and performances of the brain remains one of the biggest challenges for the future of information and communication technologies. Such an ambitious goal requires research efforts from the architecture level to the basic device level (i.e., investigating the opportunities offered by emerging nanotechnologies to build such systems). Nanodevices, or, more precisely, memory or memristive devices, have been proposed for the implementation of synaptic functions, offering the required features and integration in a single component. In this paper, we demonstrate that the basic physics involved in the filamentary switching of electrochemical metallization cells can reproduce important biological synaptic functions that are key mechanisms for information processing and storage. The transition from short- to long-term plasticity has been reported as a direct consequence of filament growth (i.e., increased conductance) in filamentary memory devices. In this paper, we show tha...

  20. The importance of stochastic signaling processes in the induction of long-term synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Schutter, Erik

    2013-11-01

    A stochastic model of the signaling network responsible for the induction of long-term depression (LTD) at the parallel fiber to Purkinje cell synapse is described. The model includes a PKC-ERK-cPLA2 positive feedback loop and mechanisms of AMPA receptor trafficking. It was tuned to replicate calcium uncaging experiments that cause LTD. The ultrasensitive activation of ERK makes the signaling network activity bistable, causing either LTD or not. Therefore, in single synapses only two discrete stable states (LTD and non-LTD) can be expressed. The stochastic properties of the signaling network causes threshold dithering and probabilistic expression of LTD, which allows at the macroscopic level for many different and stable mean magnitudes of depression. When the volume of a single spine is simulated no thresholds for the calcium input signal are present. Such thresholds appear only when the volume of simulation is increased by a factor 100 or more and the model output is then bistable. Similarly, deterministic solutions of the same model show only bistable behavior. LTD induction requires activation of the PKC-ERK-cPLA2 positive feedback loop but this activity is not constant: the activities of ERK and of cPLA2 fluctuate strongly. This is much less the case for PKC which is more constantly activated and thereby promotes a stable output of the pathway. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. The developmental stages of synaptic plasticity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lohmann, Christian; Kessels, Helmut W.

    2014-01-01

    The brain is programmed to drive behaviour by precisely wiring the appropriate neuronal circuits. Wiring and rewiring of neuronal circuits largely depends on the orchestrated changes in the strengths of synaptic contacts. Here, we review how the rules of synaptic plasticity change during development

  2. Arc protein: a flexible hub for synaptic plasticity and cognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nikolaienko, Oleksii; Patil, Sudarshan; Eriksen, Maria Steene; Bramham, Clive R

    2017-09-07

    Mammalian excitatory synapses express diverse types of synaptic plasticity. A major challenge in neuroscience is to understand how a neuron utilizes different types of plasticity to sculpt brain development, function, and behavior. Neuronal activity-induced expression of the immediate early protein, Arc, is critical for long-term potentiation and depression of synaptic transmission, homeostatic synaptic scaling, and adaptive functions such as long-term memory formation. However, the molecular basis of Arc protein function as a regulator of synaptic plasticity and cognition remains a puzzle. Recent work on the biophysical and structural properties of Arc, its protein-protein interactions and post-translational modifications have shed light on the issue. Here, we present Arc protein as a flexible, multifunctional and interactive hub. Arc interacts with specific effector proteins in neuronal compartments (dendritic spines, nuclear domains) to bidirectionally regulate synaptic strength by distinct molecular mechanisms. Arc stability, subcellular localization, and interactions are dictated by synaptic activity and post-translational modification of Arc. This functional versatility and context-dependent signaling supports a view of Arc as a highly specialized master organizer of long-term synaptic plasticity, critical for information storage and cognition. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  3. Emergent spatial synaptic structure from diffusive plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sweeney, Yann; Clopath, Claudia

    2017-04-01

    Some neurotransmitters can diffuse freely across cell membranes, influencing neighbouring neurons regardless of their synaptic coupling. This provides a means of neural communication, alternative to synaptic transmission, which can influence the way in which neural networks process information. Here, we ask whether diffusive neurotransmission can also influence the structure of synaptic connectivity in a network undergoing plasticity. We propose a form of Hebbian synaptic plasticity which is mediated by a diffusive neurotransmitter. Whenever a synapse is modified at an individual neuron through our proposed mechanism, similar but smaller modifications occur in synapses connecting to neighbouring neurons. The effects of this diffusive plasticity are explored in networks of rate-based neurons. This leads to the emergence of spatial structure in the synaptic connectivity of the network. We show that this spatial structure can coexist with other forms of structure in the synaptic connectivity, such as with groups of strongly interconnected neurons that form in response to correlated external drive. Finally, we explore diffusive plasticity in a simple feedforward network model of receptive field development. We show that, as widely observed across sensory cortex, the preferred stimulus identity of neurons in our network become spatially correlated due to diffusion. Our proposed mechanism of diffusive plasticity provides an efficient mechanism for generating these spatial correlations in stimulus preference which can flexibly interact with other forms of synaptic organisation. © 2016 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  4. A Model of Bidirectional Synaptic Plasticity: From Signaling Network to Channel Conductance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castellani, Gastone C.; Quinlan, Elizabeth M.; Bersani, Ferdinando; Cooper, Leon N.; Shouval, Harel Z.

    2005-01-01

    In many regions of the brain, including the mammalian cortex, the strength of synaptic transmission can be bidirectionally regulated by cortical activity (synaptic plasticity). One line of evidence indicates that long-term synaptic potentiation (LTP) and long-term synaptic depression (LTD), correlate with the phosphorylation/dephosphorylation of…

  5. Cerebellar Synaptic Plasticity and the Credit Assignment Problem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jörntell, Henrik

    2016-04-01

    The mechanism by which a learnt synaptic weight change can contribute to learning or adaptation of brain function is a type of credit assignment problem, which is a key issue for many parts of the brain. In the cerebellum, detailed knowledge not only of the local circuitry connectivity but also of the topography of different sources of afferent/external information makes this problem particularly tractable. In addition, multiple forms of synaptic plasticity and their general rules of induction have been identified. In this review, we will discuss the possible roles of synaptic and cellular plasticity at specific locations in contributing to behavioral changes. Focus will be on the parts of the cerebellum that are devoted to limb control, which constitute a large proportion of the cortex and where the knowledge of the external connectivity is particularly well known. From this perspective, a number of sites of synaptic plasticity appear to primarily have the function of balancing the overall level of activity in the cerebellar circuitry, whereas the locations at which synaptic plasticity leads to functional changes in terms of limb control are more limited. Specifically, the postsynaptic forms of long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) at the parallel fiber synapses made on interneurons and Purkinje cells, respectively, are the types of plasticity that mediate the widest associative capacity and the tightest link between the synaptic change and the external functions that are to be controlled.

  6. Altered short-term synaptic plasticity and reduced muscle strength in mice with impaired regulation of presynaptic CaV2.1 Ca2+ channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nanou, Evanthia; Yan, Jin; Whitehead, Nicholas P; Kim, Min Jeong; Froehner, Stanley C; Scheuer, Todd; Catterall, William A

    2016-01-26

    Facilitation and inactivation of P/Q-type calcium (Ca(2+)) currents through the regulation of voltage-gated Ca(2+) (CaV) 2.1 channels by Ca(2+) sensor (CaS) proteins contributes to the facilitation and rapid depression of synaptic transmission in cultured neurons that transiently express CaV2.1 channels. To examine the modulation of endogenous CaV2.1 channels by CaS proteins in native synapses, we introduced a mutation (IM-AA) into the CaS protein-binding site in the C-terminal domain of CaV2.1 channels in mice, and tested synaptic facilitation and depression in neuromuscular junction synapses that use exclusively CaV2.1 channels for Ca(2+) entry that triggers synaptic transmission. Even though basal synaptic transmission was unaltered in the neuromuscular synapses in IM-AA mice, we found reduced short-term facilitation in response to paired stimuli at short interstimulus intervals in IM-AA synapses. In response to trains of action potentials, we found increased facilitation at lower frequencies (10-30 Hz) in IM-AA synapses accompanied by slowed synaptic depression, whereas synaptic facilitation was reduced at high stimulus frequencies (50-100 Hz) that would induce strong muscle contraction. As a consequence of altered regulation of CaV2.1 channels, the hindlimb tibialis anterior muscle in IM-AA mice exhibited reduced peak force in response to 50 Hz stimulation and increased muscle fatigue. The IM-AA mice also had impaired motor control, exercise capacity, and grip strength. Taken together, our results indicate that regulation of CaV2.1 channels by CaS proteins is essential for normal synaptic plasticity at the neuromuscular junction and for muscle strength, endurance, and motor coordination in mice in vivo.

  7. Network response synchronization enhanced by synaptic plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lobov, S.; Simonov, A.; Kastalskiy, I.; Kazantsev, V.

    2016-02-01

    Synchronization of neural network response on spatially localized periodic stimulation was studied. The network consisted of synaptically coupled spiking neurons with spike-timing-dependent synaptic plasticity (STDP). Network connectivity was defined by time evolving matrix of synaptic weights. We found that the steady-state spatial pattern of the weights could be rearranged due to locally applied external periodic stimulation. A method for visualization of synaptic weights as vector field was introduced to monitor the evolving connectivity matrix. We demonstrated that changes in the vector field and associated weight rearrangements underlay an enhancement of synchronization range.

  8. Neuronal cytoskeleton in synaptic plasticity and regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gordon-Weeks, Phillip R; Fournier, Alyson E

    2014-04-01

    During development, dynamic changes in the axonal growth cone and dendrite are necessary for exploratory movements underlying initial axo-dendritic contact and ultimately the formation of a functional synapse. In the adult central nervous system, an impressive degree of plasticity is retained through morphological and molecular rearrangements in the pre- and post-synaptic compartments that underlie the strengthening or weakening of synaptic pathways. Plasticity is regulated by the interplay of permissive and inhibitory extracellular cues, which signal through receptors at the synapse to regulate the closure of critical periods of developmental plasticity as well as by acute changes in plasticity in response to experience and activity in the adult. The molecular underpinnings of synaptic plasticity are actively studied and it is clear that the cytoskeleton is a key substrate for many cues that affect plasticity. Many of the cues that restrict synaptic plasticity exhibit residual activity in the injured adult CNS and restrict regenerative growth by targeting the cytoskeleton. Here, we review some of the latest insights into how cytoskeletal remodeling affects neuronal plasticity and discuss how the cytoskeleton is being targeted in an effort to promote plasticity and repair following traumatic injury in the central nervous system. © 2013 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  9. Cadherins mediate cocaine-induced synaptic plasticity and behavioral conditioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mills, Fergil; Globa, Andrea K; Liu, Shuai; Cowan, Catherine M; Mobasser, Mahsan; Phillips, Anthony G; Borgland, Stephanie L; Bamji, Shernaz X

    2017-04-01

    Drugs of abuse alter synaptic connections in the reward circuitry of the brain, which leads to long-lasting behavioral changes that underlie addiction. Here we show that cadherin adhesion molecules play a critical role in mediating synaptic plasticity and behavioral changes driven by cocaine. We demonstrate that cadherin is essential for long-term potentiation in the ventral tegmental area and is recruited to the synaptic membranes of excitatory synapses onto dopaminergic neurons following cocaine-mediated behavioral conditioning. Furthermore, we show that stabilization of cadherin at the membrane of these synapses blocks cocaine-induced synaptic plasticity, leading to a reduction in conditioned place preference induced by cocaine. Our findings identify cadherins and associated molecules as targets of interest for understanding pathological plasticity associated with addiction.

  10. Exercise-Induced Fatigue Impairs Bidirectional Corticostriatal Synaptic Plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Jing; Chen, Huimin; Liu, Xiaoli; Zhang, Lingtao; Qiao, Decai

    2018-01-01

    Exercise-induced fatigue (EF) is a ubiquitous phenomenon in sports competition and training. It can impair athletes' motor skill execution and cognition. Corticostriatal synaptic plasticity is considered to be the cellular mechanism of movement control and motor learning. However, the effect of EF on corticostriatal synaptic plasticity remains elusive. In the present study, using field excitatory postsynaptic potential recording, we found that the corticostriatal long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) were both impaired in EF mice. To further investigate the cellular mechanisms underlying the impaired synaptic plasticity in corticostriatal pathway, whole-cell patch clamp recordings were carried out on striatal medium spiny neurons (MSNs). MSNs in EF mice exhibited increased spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic current (sEPSC) frequency and decreased paired-pulse ratio (PPR), while with normal basic electrophysiological properties and normal sEPSC amplitude. Furthermore, the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA)/α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionate (AMPA) ratio of MSNs was reduced in EF mice. These results suggest that the enhanced presynaptic glutamate (Glu) release and downregulated postsynaptic NMDA receptor function lead to the impaired corticostriatal plasticity in EF mice. Taken together, our findings for the first time show that the bidirectional corticostriatal synaptic plasticity is impaired after EF, and suggest that the aberrant corticostriatal synaptic plasticity may be involved in the production and/or maintenance of EF.

  11. Synaptic plasticity in the auditory system: a review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Friauf, Eckhard; Fischer, Alexander U; Fuhr, Martin F

    2015-07-01

    Synaptic transmission via chemical synapses is dynamic, i.e., the strength of postsynaptic responses may change considerably in response to repeated synaptic activation. Synaptic strength is increased during facilitation, augmentation and potentiation, whereas a decrease in synaptic strength is characteristic for depression and attenuation. This review attempts to discuss the literature on short-term and long-term synaptic plasticity in the auditory brainstem of mammals and birds. One hallmark of the auditory system, particularly the inner ear and lower brainstem stations, is information transfer through neurons that fire action potentials at very high frequency, thereby activating synapses >500 times per second. Some auditory synapses display morphological specializations of the presynaptic terminals, e.g., calyceal extensions, whereas other auditory synapses do not. The review focuses on short-term depression and short-term facilitation, i.e., plastic changes with durations in the millisecond range. Other types of short-term synaptic plasticity, e.g., posttetanic potentiation and depolarization-induced suppression of excitation, will be discussed much more briefly. The same holds true for subtypes of long-term plasticity, like prolonged depolarizations and spike-time-dependent plasticity. We also address forms of plasticity in the auditory brainstem that do not comprise synaptic plasticity in a strict sense, namely short-term suppression, paired tone facilitation, short-term adaptation, synaptic adaptation and neural adaptation. Finally, we perform a meta-analysis of 61 studies in which short-term depression (STD) in the auditory system is opposed to short-term depression at non-auditory synapses in order to compare high-frequency neurons with those that fire action potentials at a lower rate. This meta-analysis reveals considerably less STD in most auditory synapses than in non-auditory ones, enabling reliable, failure-free synaptic transmission even at

  12. Emergence of resonances in neural systems: the interplay between adaptive threshold and short-term synaptic plasticity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jorge F Mejias

    Full Text Available In this work we study the detection of weak stimuli by spiking (integrate-and-fire neurons in the presence of certain level of noisy background neural activity. Our study has focused in the realistic assumption that the synapses in the network present activity-dependent processes, such as short-term synaptic depression and facilitation. Employing mean-field techniques as well as numerical simulations, we found that there are two possible noise levels which optimize signal transmission. This new finding is in contrast with the classical theory of stochastic resonance which is able to predict only one optimal level of noise. We found that the complex interplay between adaptive neuron threshold and activity-dependent synaptic mechanisms is responsible for this new phenomenology. Our main results are confirmed by employing a more realistic FitzHugh-Nagumo neuron model, which displays threshold variability, as well as by considering more realistic stochastic synaptic models and realistic signals such as poissonian spike trains.

  13. Modulation of Synaptic Plasticity by Glutamatergic Gliotransmission: A Modeling Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maurizio De Pittà

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Glutamatergic gliotransmission, that is, the release of glutamate from perisynaptic astrocyte processes in an activity-dependent manner, has emerged as a potentially crucial signaling pathway for regulation of synaptic plasticity, yet its modes of expression and function in vivo remain unclear. Here, we focus on two experimentally well-identified gliotransmitter pathways, (i modulations of synaptic release and (ii postsynaptic slow inward currents mediated by glutamate released from astrocytes, and investigate their possible functional relevance on synaptic plasticity in a biophysical model of an astrocyte-regulated synapse. Our model predicts that both pathways could profoundly affect both short- and long-term plasticity. In particular, activity-dependent glutamate release from astrocytes could dramatically change spike-timing-dependent plasticity, turning potentiation into depression (and vice versa for the same induction protocol.

  14. Modulation of Synaptic Plasticity by Glutamatergic Gliotransmission: A Modeling Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Pittà, Maurizio; Brunel, Nicolas

    2016-01-01

    Glutamatergic gliotransmission, that is, the release of glutamate from perisynaptic astrocyte processes in an activity-dependent manner, has emerged as a potentially crucial signaling pathway for regulation of synaptic plasticity, yet its modes of expression and function in vivo remain unclear. Here, we focus on two experimentally well-identified gliotransmitter pathways, (i) modulations of synaptic release and (ii) postsynaptic slow inward currents mediated by glutamate released from astrocytes, and investigate their possible functional relevance on synaptic plasticity in a biophysical model of an astrocyte-regulated synapse. Our model predicts that both pathways could profoundly affect both short- and long-term plasticity. In particular, activity-dependent glutamate release from astrocytes could dramatically change spike-timing-dependent plasticity, turning potentiation into depression (and vice versa) for the same induction protocol. PMID:27195153

  15. Synaptic plasticity model of therapeutic sleep deprivation in major depression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolf, Elias; Kuhn, Marion; Normann, Claus; Mainberger, Florian; Maier, Jonathan G; Maywald, Sarah; Bredl, Aliza; Klöppel, Stefan; Biber, Knut; van Calker, Dietrich; Riemann, Dieter; Sterr, Annette; Nissen, Christoph

    2016-12-01

    Therapeutic sleep deprivation (SD) is a rapid acting treatment for major depressive disorder (MDD). Within hours, SD leads to a dramatic decrease in depressive symptoms in 50-60% of patients with MDD. Scientifically, therapeutic SD presents a unique paradigm to study the neurobiology of MDD. Yet, up to now, the neurobiological basis of the antidepressant effect, which is most likely different from today's first-line treatments, is not sufficiently understood. This article puts the idea forward that sleep/wake-dependent shifts in synaptic plasticity, i.e., the neural basis of adaptive network function and behavior, represent a critical mechanism of therapeutic SD in MDD. Particularly, this article centers on two major hypotheses of MDD and sleep, the synaptic plasticity hypothesis of MDD and the synaptic homeostasis hypothesis of sleep-wake regulation, and on how they can be integrated into a novel synaptic plasticity model of therapeutic SD in MDD. As a major component, the model proposes that therapeutic SD, by homeostatically enhancing cortical synaptic strength, shifts the initially deficient inducibility of associative synaptic long-term potentiation (LTP) in patients with MDD in a more favorable window of associative plasticity. Research on the molecular effects of SD in animals and humans, including observations in the neurotrophic, adenosinergic, monoaminergic, and glutamatergic system, provides some support for the hypothesis of associative synaptic plasticity facilitation after therapeutic SD in MDD. The model proposes a novel framework for a mechanism of action of therapeutic SD that can be further tested in humans based on non-invasive indices and in animals based on direct studies of synaptic plasticity. Further determining the mechanisms of action of SD might contribute to the development of novel fast acting treatments for MDD, one of the major health problems worldwide. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Haploinsufficiency of the 22q11.2 microdeletion gene Mrpl40 disrupts short-term synaptic plasticity and working memory through dysregulation of mitochondrial calcium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Devaraju, P; Yu, J; Eddins, D; Mellado-Lagarde, M M; Earls, L R; Westmoreland, J J; Quarato, G; Green, D R; Zakharenko, S S

    2017-09-01

    Hemizygous deletion of a 1.5- to 3-megabase region on chromosome 22 causes 22q11.2 deletion syndrome (22q11DS), which constitutes one of the strongest genetic risks for schizophrenia. Mouse models of 22q11DS have abnormal short-term synaptic plasticity that contributes to working-memory deficiencies similar to those in schizophrenia. We screened mutant mice carrying hemizygous deletions of 22q11DS genes and identified haploinsufficiency of Mrpl40 (mitochondrial large ribosomal subunit protein 40) as a contributor to abnormal short-term potentiation (STP), a major form of short-term synaptic plasticity. Two-photon imaging of the genetically encoded fluorescent calcium indicator GCaMP6, expressed in presynaptic cytosol or mitochondria, showed that Mrpl40 haploinsufficiency deregulates STP via impaired calcium extrusion from the mitochondrial matrix through the mitochondrial permeability transition pore. This led to abnormally high cytosolic calcium transients in presynaptic terminals and deficient working memory but did not affect long-term spatial memory. Thus, we propose that mitochondrial calcium deregulation is a novel pathogenic mechanism of cognitive deficiencies in schizophrenia.

  17. Synaptic vesicle proteins and active zone plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert J Kittel

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Neurotransmitter is released from synaptic vesicles at the highly specialized presynaptic active zone. The complex molecular architecture of active zones mediates the speed, precision and plasticity of synaptic transmission. Importantly, structural and functional properties of active zones vary significantly, even for a given connection. Thus, there appear to be distinct active zone states, which fundamentally influence neuronal communication by controlling the positioning and release of synaptic vesicles. Vice versa, recent evidence has revealed that synaptic vesicle components also modulate organizational states of the active zone.The protein-rich cytomatrix at the active zone (CAZ provides a structural platform for molecular interactions guiding vesicle exocytosis. Studies in Drosophila have now demonstrated that the vesicle proteins Synaptotagmin-1 (Syt1 and Rab3 also regulate glutamate release by shaping differentiation of the CAZ ultrastructure. We review these unexpected findings and discuss mechanistic interpretations of the reciprocal relationship between synaptic vesicles and active zone states, which has heretofore received little attention.

  18. Progesterone Regulation of Synaptic Transmission and Plasticity in Rodent Hippocampus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foy, Michael R.; Akopian, Garnik; Thompson, Richard F.

    2008-01-01

    Ovarian hormones influence memory formation by eliciting changes in neural activity. The effects of various concentrations of progesterone (P4) on synaptic transmission and plasticity associated with long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) were studied using in vitro hippocampal slices. Extracellular studies show that the…

  19. Heterosynaptic Plasticity Prevents Runaway Synaptic Dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Jen-Yung; Lonjers, Peter; Lee, Christopher; Chistiakova, Marina; Volgushev, Maxim

    2013-01-01

    Spike timing-dependent plasticity (STDP) and other conventional Hebbian-type plasticity rules are prone to produce runaway dynamics of synaptic weights. Once potentiated, a synapse would have higher probability to lead to spikes and thus to be further potentiated, but once depressed, a synapse would tend to be further depressed. The runaway synaptic dynamics can be prevented by precisely balancing STDP rules for potentiation and depression; however, experimental evidence shows a great variety of potentiation and depression windows and magnitudes. Here we show that modifications of synapses to layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons from rat visual and auditory cortices in slices can be induced by intracellular tetanization: bursts of postsynaptic spikes without presynaptic stimulation. Induction of these heterosynaptic changes depended on the rise of intracellular calcium, and their direction and magnitude correlated with initial state of release mechanisms. We suggest that this type of plasticity serves as a mechanism that stabilizes the distribution of synaptic weights and prevents their runaway dynamics. To test this hypothesis, we develop a cortical neuron model implementing both homosynaptic (STDP) and heterosynaptic plasticity with properties matching the experimental data. We find that heterosynaptic plasticity effectively prevented runaway dynamics for the tested range of STDP and input parameters. Synaptic weights, although shifted from the original, remained normally distributed and nonsaturated. Our study presents a biophysically constrained model of how the interaction of different forms of plasticity—Hebbian and heterosynaptic—may prevent runaway synaptic dynamics and keep synaptic weights unsaturated and thus capable of further plastic changes and formation of new memories. PMID:24089497

  20. Simulation of synaptic short-term plasticity using Ba(CF3SO3)2-doped polyethylene oxide electrolyte film

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, C. T.; Zeng, F.; Li, X. J.; Dong, W. S.; Lu, S. H.; Gao, S.; Pan, F.

    2016-01-01

    The simulation of synaptic plasticity using new materials is critical in the study of brain-inspired computing. Devices composed of Ba(CF3SO3)2-doped polyethylene oxide (PEO) electrolyte film were fabricated and with pulse responses found to resemble the synaptic short-term plasticity (STP) of both short-term depression (STD) and short-term facilitation (STF) synapses. The values of the charge and discharge peaks of the pulse responses did not vary with input number when the pulse frequency was sufficiently low(~1 Hz). However, when the frequency was increased, the charge and discharge peaks decreased and increased, respectively, in gradual trends and approached stable values with respect to the input number. These stable values varied with the input frequency, which resulted in the depressed and potentiated weight modifications of the charge and discharge peaks, respectively. These electrical properties simulated the high and low band-pass filtering effects of STD and STF, respectively. The simulations were consistent with biological results and the corresponding biological parameters were successfully extracted. The study verified the feasibility of using organic electrolytes to mimic STP.

  1. Homeostatic synaptic plasticity at the neuromuscular junction in myasthenia gravis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xueyong; Rich, Mark M

    2018-01-01

    A number of studies in the past 20 years have shown that perturbation of activity of the nervous system leads to compensatory changes in synaptic strength that serve to return network activity to its original level. This response has been termed homeostatic synaptic plasticity. Despite the intense interest in homeostatic synaptic plasticity, little attention has been paid to its role in the prototypic synaptic disease, myasthenia gravis. In this review, we discuss mechanisms that have been shown to mediate homeostatic synaptic plasticity at the mammalian neuromuscular junction. A subset of these mechanisms have been shown to occur in myasthenia gravis. The homeostatic changes occurring in myasthenia gravis appear to involve the presynaptic nerve terminal and may even involve changes in the excitability of motor neurons within the spinal cord. The finding of presynaptic homeostatic synaptic plasticity in myasthenia gravis leads us to propose that changes in the motor unit in myasthenia gravis may be more widespread than previously appreciated. © 2017 New York Academy of Sciences.

  2. Synaptic adhesion molecule IgSF11 regulates synaptic transmission and plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shin, Hyewon; van Riesen, Christoph; Whitcomb, Daniel; Warburton, Julia M.; Jo, Jihoon; Kim, Doyoun; Kim, Sun Gyun; Um, Seung Min; Kwon, Seok-kyu; Kim, Myoung-Hwan; Roh, Junyeop Daniel; Woo, Jooyeon; Jun, Heejung; Lee, Dongmin; Mah, Won; Kim, Hyun; Kaang, Bong-Kiun; Cho, Kwangwook; Rhee, Jeong-Seop; Choquet, Daniel; Kim, Eunjoon

    2016-01-01

    Summary Synaptic adhesion molecules regulate synapse development and plasticity through mechanisms including trans-synaptic adhesion and recruitment of diverse synaptic proteins. We report here that the immunoglobulin superfamily member 11 (IgSF11), a homophilic adhesion molecule preferentially expressed in the brain, is a novel and dual-binding partner of the postsynaptic scaffolding protein PSD-95 and AMPAR glutamate receptors (AMPARs). IgSF11 requires PSD-95 binding for its excitatory synaptic localization. In addition, IgSF11 stabilizes synaptic AMPARs, as shown by IgSF11 knockdown-induced suppression of AMPAR-mediated synaptic transmission and increased surface mobility of AMPARs, measured by high-throughput, single-molecule tracking. IgSF11 deletion in mice leads to suppression of AMPAR-mediated synaptic transmission in the dentate gyrus and long-term potentiation in the CA1 region of the hippocampus. IgSF11 does not regulate the functional characteristics of AMPARs, including desensitization, deactivation, or recovery. These results suggest that IgSF11 regulates excitatory synaptic transmission and plasticity through its tripartite interactions with PSD-95 and AMPARs. PMID:26595655

  3. Alteration of Neuronal Excitability and Short-Term Synaptic Plasticity in the Prefrontal Cortex of a Mouse Model of Mental Illness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crabtree, Gregg W; Sun, Ziyi; Kvajo, Mirna; Broek, Jantine A C; Fénelon, Karine; McKellar, Heather; Xiao, Lan; Xu, Bin; Bahn, Sabine; O'Donnell, James M; Gogos, Joseph A

    2017-04-12

    Using a genetic mouse model that faithfully recapitulates a DISC1 genetic alteration strongly associated with schizophrenia and other psychiatric disorders, we examined the impact of this mutation within the prefrontal cortex. Although cortical layering, cytoarchitecture, and proteome were found to be largely unaffected, electrophysiological examination of the mPFC revealed both neuronal hyperexcitability and alterations in short-term synaptic plasticity consistent with enhanced neurotransmitter release. Increased excitability of layer II/III pyramidal neurons was accompanied by consistent reductions in voltage-activated potassium currents near the action potential threshold as well as by enhanced recruitment of inputs arising from superficial layers to layer V. We further observed reductions in both the paired-pulse ratios and the enhanced short-term depression of layer V synapses arising from superficial layers consistent with enhanced neurotransmitter release at these synapses. Recordings from layer II/III pyramidal neurons revealed action potential widening that could account for enhanced neurotransmitter release. Significantly, we found that reduced functional expression of the voltage-dependent potassium channel subunit K v 1.1 substantially contributes to both the excitability and short-term plasticity alterations that we observed. The underlying dysregulation of K v 1.1 expression was attributable to cAMP elevations in the PFC secondary to reduced phosphodiesterase 4 activity present in Disc1 deficiency and was rescued by pharmacological blockade of adenylate cyclase. Our results demonstrate a potentially devastating impact of Disc1 deficiency on neural circuit function, partly due to K v 1.1 dysregulation that leads to a dual dysfunction consisting of enhanced neuronal excitability and altered short-term synaptic plasticity. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Schizophrenia is a profoundly disabling psychiatric illness with a devastating impact not only upon the

  4. [EFFECT OF PEPTIDE SEMAX ON SYNAPTIC ACTIVITY AND SHORT-TERM PLASTICITY OF GLUTAMATERGIC SYNAPSES OF CO-CULTURED DORSAL ROOT GANGLION AND DORSAL HORN NEURONS].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shypshyna, M S; Veselovsky, N S; Myasoedov, N F; Shram, S I; Fedulova, S A

    2015-01-01

    The influence of long-term culturing (12 days in vitro) of dorsal root ganglion (DRG) and dorsal horn (DH) neurons with peptide Semax on the level of synaptic activity at co-cultures, as well as short-term plasticity in sensory synapses were studied. It has been shown that neuronal culturing with peptide at concentrations of 10 and 100 µM led to increasing the frequency of spontaneous glutamatergic postsynaptic currents in DH neurons to 71.7 ± 1.8% and 93.9 ± 3.1% (n = 6; P effect on the amplitude and frequency of miniature glutamatergic currents, but causes an increase of the amplitudes of spontaneous postsynaptic currents, as well as elevates the quantum content. The data show the increase of multivesicular glutamate release efficiency in neural networks of co-cultures following incubation with the peptide. Also Semax (10 and 100 µM) induces changes of the basic parameters of short-term plasticity in sensory synapses: (1) increasing the paired-pulse ratio from 0.53 ± 0.028 (n = 8) to 0.91 ± 0.072 (n = 6, P effect of Semax on the activity of glutamatergic synapses in neural networks of co-cultures, as well as the ability of the peptide to effectively modulate the short-term plasticity in sensory synapses.

  5. Synaptic plasticity and the warburg effect

    KAUST Repository

    Magistretti, Pierre J.

    2014-01-01

    Functional brain imaging studies show that in certain brain regions glucose utilization exceeds oxygen consumption, indicating the predominance of aerobic glycolysis. In this issue, Goyal et al. (2014) report that this metabolic profile is associated with an enrichment in the expression of genes involved in synaptic plasticity and remodeling processes. © 2014 Elsevier Inc.

  6. The Role of Proteases in Hippocampal Synaptic Plasticity: Putting Together Small Pieces of a Complex Puzzle.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salazar, Ivan L; Caldeira, Margarida V; Curcio, Michele; Duarte, Carlos B

    2016-02-01

    Long-term synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus is thought to underlie the formation of certain forms of memory, including spatial memory. The early phase of long-term synaptic potentiation and synaptic depression depends on post-translational modifications of synaptic proteins, while protein synthesis is also required for the late-phase of both forms of synaptic plasticity (L-LTP and L-LTD). Numerous pieces of evidence show a role for different types of proteases in synaptic plasticity, further increasing the diversity of mechanisms involved in the regulation of the intracellular and extracellular protein content. The cleavage of extracellular proteins is coupled to changes in postsynaptic intracellular mechanisms, and additional alterations in this compartment result from the protease-mediated targeting of intracellular proteins. Both mechanisms contribute to initiate signaling cascades that drive downstream pathways coupled to synaptic plasticity. In this review we summarize the evidence pointing to a role for extracellular and intracellular proteases, with distinct specificities, in synaptic plasticity. Where in the cells the proteases are located, and how they are regulated is also discussed. The combined actions of proteases and translation mechanisms contribute to a tight control of the synaptic proteome relevant for long-term synaptic potentiation and synaptic depression in the hippocampus. Additional studies are required to elucidate the mechanisms whereby these changes in the synaptic proteome are related with plasticity phenomena.

  7. Synaptic plasticity: one STEP at a time.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braithwaite, Steven P; Paul, Surojit; Nairn, Angus C; Lombroso, Paul J

    2006-08-01

    Striatal enriched tyrosine phosphatase (STEP) has recently been identified as a crucial player in the regulation of synaptic function. It is restricted to neurons within the CNS and acts by downregulating the activity of MAP kinases, the tyrosine kinase Fyn and NMDA receptors. By modulating these substrates, STEP acts on several parallel pathways that impact upon the progression of synaptic plasticity. Here, we review recent advances that demonstrate the importance of STEP in normal cognitive function, and its possible involvement in cognitive disorders such as Alzheimer's disease.

  8. Critical Role of Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress in Chronic Intermittent Hypoxia-Induced Deficits in Synaptic Plasticity and Long-Term Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Lin-Hao; Xie, Hui; Shi, Zhi-Hui; Du, Li-Da; Wing, Yun-Kwok; Li, Albert M; Ke, Ya; Yung, Wing-Ho

    2015-09-20

    This study examined the role of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress in mediating chronic intermittent hypoxia (IH)-induced neurocognitive deficits. We designed experiments to demonstrate that ER stress is initiated in the hippocampus under chronic IH and determined its role in apoptotic cell death, impaired synaptic structure and plasticity, and memory deficits. Two weeks of IH disrupted ER fine structure and upregulated ER stress markers, glucose-regulated protein 78, caspase-12, and C/EBP homologous protein, in the hippocampus, which could be suppressed by ER stress inhibitors, tauroursodeoxycholic acid (TUDCA) and 4-phenylbutyric acid. Meanwhile, ER stress induced apoptosis via decreased Bcl-2, promoted reactive oxygen species production, and increased malondialdehyde formation and protein carbonyl, as well as suppressed mitochondrial function. These effects were largely prevented by ER stress inhibitors. On the other hand, suppression of oxidative stress could reduce ER stress. In addition, the length of the synaptic active zone and number of mature spines were reduced by IH. Long-term recognition memory and spatial memory were also impaired, which was accompanied by reduced long-term potentiation in the Schaffer collateral pathway. These effects were prevented by coadministration of the TUDCA. These results show that ER stress plays a critical role in underlying memory deficits in obstructive sleep apnea (OSA)-associated IH. Attenuators of ER stress may serve as novel adjunct therapeutic agents for ameliorating OSA-induced neurocognitive impairment.

  9. Synaptic Scaling in Combination with Many Generic Plasticity Mechanisms Stabilizes Circuit Connectivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tetzlaff, Christian; Kolodziejski, Christoph; Timme, Marc; Wörgötter, Florentin

    2011-01-01

    Synaptic scaling is a slow process that modifies synapses, keeping the firing rate of neural circuits in specific regimes. Together with other processes, such as conventional synaptic plasticity in the form of long term depression and potentiation, synaptic scaling changes the synaptic patterns in a network, ensuring diverse, functionally relevant, stable, and input-dependent connectivity. How synaptic patterns are generated and stabilized, however, is largely unknown. Here we formally describe and analyze synaptic scaling based on results from experimental studies and demonstrate that the combination of different conventional plasticity mechanisms and synaptic scaling provides a powerful general framework for regulating network connectivity. In addition, we design several simple models that reproduce experimentally observed synaptic distributions as well as the observed synaptic modifications during sustained activity changes. These models predict that the combination of plasticity with scaling generates globally stable, input-controlled synaptic patterns, also in recurrent networks. Thus, in combination with other forms of plasticity, synaptic scaling can robustly yield neuronal circuits with high synaptic diversity, which potentially enables robust dynamic storage of complex activation patterns. This mechanism is even more pronounced when considering networks with a realistic degree of inhibition. Synaptic scaling combined with plasticity could thus be the basis for learning structured behavior even in initially random networks. PMID:22203799

  10. Homeostatic synaptic plasticity: from single synapses to neural circuits.

    OpenAIRE

    Vitureira, Nathalia; Letellier, Mathieu; Goda, Yukiko

    2012-01-01

    Homeostatic synaptic plasticity remains an enigmatic form of synaptic plasticity. Increasing interest on the topic has fuelled a surge of recent studies that have identified key molecular players and the signaling pathways involved. However, the new findings also highlight our lack of knowledge concerning some of the basic properties of homeostatic synaptic plasticity. In this review we address how homeostatic mechanisms balance synaptic strengths between the presynaptic and the postsynaptic ...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sadra Sadeh

    2015-06-01

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

  12. The Spacing Effect for Structural Synaptic Plasticity Provides Specificity and Precision in Plastic Changes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    San Martin, Alvaro; Rela, Lorena; Gelb, Bruce; Pagani, Mario Rafael

    2017-05-10

    In contrast to trials of training without intervals (massed training), training trials spaced over time (spaced training) induce a more persistent memory identified as long-term memory (LTM). This phenomenon, known as the spacing effect for memory, is poorly understood. LTM is supported by structural synaptic plasticity; however, how synapses integrate spaced stimuli remains elusive. Here, we analyzed events of structural synaptic plasticity at the single-synapse level after distinct patterns of stimulation in motoneurons of Drosophila We found that the spacing effect is a phenomenon detected at synaptic level, which determines the specificity and the precision in structural synaptic plasticity. Whereas a single pulse of stimulation (massed) induced structural synaptic plasticity, the same amount of stimulation divided in three spaced stimuli completely prevented it. This inhibitory effect was determined by the length of the interstimulus intervals. The inhibitory effect of the spacing was lost by suppressing the activity of Ras or mitogen-activated protein kinase, whereas the overexpression of Ras-WT enhanced it. Moreover, dividing the same total time of stimulation into five or more stimuli produced a higher precision in the number of events of plasticity. Ras mutations associated with intellectual disability abolished the spacing effect and led neurons to decode distinct stimulation patterns as massed stimulation. This evidence suggests that the spacing effect for memory may result from the effect of the spacing in synaptic plasticity, which appears to be a property not limited to neurons involved in learning and memory. We propose a model of spacing-dependent structural synaptic plasticity. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Long-term memory (LTM) induced by repeated trials spaced over time is known as the spacing effect, a common property in the animal kingdom. Altered mechanisms in the spacing effect have been found in animal models of disorders with intellectual

  13. Histone Deacetylase Inhibition Facilitates Massed Pattern-Induced Synaptic Plasticity and Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pandey, Kiran; Sharma, Kaushik P.; Sharma, Shiv K.

    2015-01-01

    Massed training is less effective for long-term memory formation than the spaced training. The role of acetylation in synaptic plasticity and memory is now well established. However, the role of this important protein modification in synaptic plasticity induced by massed pattern of stimulation or memory induced by massed training is not well…

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert Nisticò

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

  15. Emerging Link between Alzheimer's Disease and Homeostatic Synaptic Plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jang, Sung-Soo; Chung, Hee Jung

    2016-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is an irreversible brain disorder characterized by progressive cognitive decline and neurodegeneration of brain regions that are crucial for learning and memory. Although intracellular neurofibrillary tangles and extracellular senile plaques, composed of insoluble amyloid-β (Aβ) peptides, have been the hallmarks of postmortem AD brains, memory impairment in early AD correlates better with pathological accumulation of soluble Aβ oligomers and persistent weakening of excitatory synaptic strength, which is demonstrated by inhibition of long-term potentiation, enhancement of long-term depression, and loss of synapses. However, current, approved interventions aiming to reduce Aβ levels have failed to retard disease progression; this has led to a pressing need to identify and target alternative pathogenic mechanisms of AD. Recently, it has been suggested that the disruption of Hebbian synaptic plasticity in AD is due to aberrant metaplasticity, which is a form of homeostatic plasticity that tunes the magnitude and direction of future synaptic plasticity based on previous neuronal or synaptic activity. This review examines emerging evidence for aberrant metaplasticity in AD. Putative mechanisms underlying aberrant metaplasticity in AD will also be discussed. We hope this review inspires future studies to test the extent to which these mechanisms contribute to the etiology of AD and offer therapeutic targets. PMID:27019755

  16. The Less Things Change, the More They Are Different: Contributions of Long-Term Synaptic Plasticity and Homeostasis to Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schacher, Samuel; Hu, Jiang-Yuan

    2014-01-01

    An important cellular mechanism contributing to the strength and duration of memories is activity-dependent alterations in the strength of synaptic connections within the neural circuit encoding the memory. Reversal of the memory is typically correlated with a reversal of the cellular changes to levels expressed prior to the stimulation. Thus, for…

  17. Mimicking Synaptic Plasticity and Neural Network Using Memtranstors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Jian-Xin; Shang, Da-Shan; Chai, Yi-Sheng; Wang, Shou-Guo; Shen, Bao-Gen; Sun, Young

    2018-02-05

    Artificial synaptic devices that mimic the functions of biological synapses have drawn enormous interest because of their potential in developing brain-inspired computing. Current studies are focusing on memristive devices in which the change of the conductance state is used to emulate synaptic behaviors. Here, a new type of artificial synaptic devices based on the memtranstor is demonstrated, which is a fundamental circuit memelement in addition to the memristor, memcapacitor, and meminductor. The state of transtance (presented by the magnetoelectric voltage) in memtranstors acting as the synaptic weight can be tuned continuously with a large number of nonvolatile levels by engineering the applied voltage pulses. Synaptic behaviors including the long-term potentiation, long-term depression, and spiking-time-dependent plasticity are implemented in memtranstors made of Ni/0.7Pb(Mg 1/3 Nb 2/3 )O 3 -0.3PbTiO 3 /Ni multiferroic heterostructures. Simulations reveal the capability of pattern learning in a memtranstor network. The work elucidates the promise of memtranstors as artificial synaptic devices with low energy consumption. © 2018 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  18. Extracellular ATP modulates synaptic plasticity induced by activation of metabotropic glutamate receptors in the hippocampus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamazaki, Yoshihiko; Fujii, Satoshi

    2015-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity is believed to be a cellular mechanism for memory formation in the brain. It has been known that the metabotropic glutamate receptor (mGluR) is required for persistent forms of memory and induction of synaptic plasticity. Application of mGluR agonists induces synaptic plasticity in the absence of electrical conditioning stimulation, such as high or low frequency stimulation. The direction of the mGluR-induced synaptic plasticity, i.e., either long-term potentiation (LTP) or long-term-depression (LTD), is dependent on whether N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) are co-activated with mGluRs. ATP has modulatory effects on neuronal functions and, in particular, there is increasing evidence that it plays a crucial role in synaptic plasticity. LTP can be induced by application of ATP, and this effect is inhibited by NMDAR antagonist. Although cooperative effects of NMDARs and mGluRs and of NMDARs and extracellular ATP in synaptic plasticity have been revealed, the effect of extracellular ATP on mGluR-induced synaptic plasticity is unknown. In this article, we summarize published data on mGluR- and ATP-induced synaptic plasticity, and present new data showing that extracellular ATP facilitates both the LTP and LTD induced by mGluR activation.

  19. The role of phosphodiesterases in hippocampal synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanderson, Thomas M; Sher, Emanuele

    2013-11-01

    Phosphodiesterases (PDEs) degrade cyclic nucleotides, signalling molecules that play important roles in synaptic plasticity and memory. Inhibition of PDEs may therefore enhance synaptic plasticity and memory as a result of elevated levels of these signalling molecules, and this has led to interest in PDE inhibitors as cognitive enhancers. The development of new mouse models in which PDE subtypes have been selectively knocked out and increasing selectivity of PDE antagonists means that this field is currently expanding. Roles for PDE2, 4, 5 and 9 in synaptic plasticity have so far been demonstrated and we review these studies here in the context of cyclic nucleotide signalling more generally. The role of other PDE families in synaptic plasticity has not yet been investigated, and this area promises to advance our understanding of cyclic nucleotide signalling in synaptic plasticity in the future. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'Glutamate Receptor-Dependent Synaptic Plasticity'. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Frequency dependent changes in NMDAR-dependent synaptic plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arvind eKumar

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available The NMDAR-dependent synaptic plasticity is thought to mediate several forms of learning, and can be induced by spike trains containing a small number of spikes occurring with varying rates and timing, as well as with oscillations. We computed the influence of these variables on the plasticity induced at a single NMDAR containing synapse using a reduced model that was analytically tractable, and these findings were confirmed using detailed, multi-compartment model. In addition to explaining diverse experimental results about the rate and timing dependence of synaptic plasticity, the model made several novel and testable predictions. We found that there was a preferred frequency for inducing long-term potentiation (LTP such that higher frequency stimuli induced lesser LTP, decreasing as 1/f when the number of spikes in the stimulus was kept fixed. Among other things, the preferred frequency for inducing LTP varied as a function of the distance of the synapse from the soma. In fact, same stimulation frequencies could induce LTP or LTD depending on the dendritic location of the synapse. Next, we found that rhythmic stimuli induced greater plasticity then irregular stimuli. Furthermore, brief bursts of spikes significantly expanded the timing dependence of plasticity. Finally, we found that in the ~5-15Hz frequency range both rate- and timing-dependent plasticity mechanisms work synergistically to render the synaptic plasticity most sensitive to spike-timing. These findings provide computational evidence that oscillations can have a profound influence on the plasticity of an NMDAR-dependent synapse, and show a novel role for the dendritic morphology in this process.

  1. A New Component in Long-Term Synaptic Plasticity: Upregulation of Kinesin in the Pre- and Postsynaptic Neurons of the Gill-Withdrawal Reflex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Puthanveettil, Sathyanarayanan V; Monje, Francisco J; Miniaci, Maria Concetta; Choi, Yun-Beom; Karl, Kevin A; Khandros, Eugene; Gawinowicz, Mary Ann; Sheetz, Michael P.; Kandel, Eric R.

    2009-01-01

    Summary To explore how gene products, required for the initiation of synaptic growth, move from the cell body of the sensory neurons to its presynaptic terminals, and from the cell body of the motor neuron to its postsynaptic dendritic spines, we have searched for anterograde transport machinery in both the sensory and motor neurons of the gill-withdrawal reflex of Aplysia. We found that the induction of long-term facilitation (LTF) by repeated applications of serotonin, a modulatory transmitter released during learning in Aplysia, requires upregulation of kinesin heavy chain (KHC) in both pre- and postsynaptic neurons. Indeed, upregulation of KHC in the presynaptic neurons alone is sufficient for the induction of LTF. However, KHC is not required for the persistence of LTF. Thus, in addition to transcriptional activation in the nucleus and local protein synthesis at the synapse, our studies have identified a third component critical for long-term learning-related plasticity: the coordinated upregulation of kinesin-mediated transport. PMID:19041756

  2. Synaptic Scaling in Combination with many Generic Plasticity Mechanisms Stabilizes Circuit Connectivity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian eTetzlaff

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Synaptic scaling is a slow process that modifies synapses, keeping the firing rate of neural circuits in specific regimes. Together with other processes, such as conventional synaptic plasticity in the form of long term depression and potentiation, this changes the synaptic patterns in a network, ensuring diverse, functionally relevant, stable and input-dependent connectivity. How synaptic patterns are generated and stabilized, however, is largely unknown. Here we formally describe and analyze synaptic scaling based on results from experimental studies and demonstrate that the combination of different conventional plasticity mechanisms and synaptic scaling provides a powerful general framework for regulating network connectivity. In addition, we design several simple models, which reproduce experimentally observed synaptic distributions as well as the observed synaptic modifications during sustained activity changes. These models predict that the combination of plasticity with scaling generates globally stable, input-controlled synaptic patterns, also in recurrent networks. Thus, in combination with other forms of plasticity, synaptic scaling can robustly yield neuronal circuits with high synaptic diversity, which potentially allows in a more robust way for the dynamic storage of complex activation patterns. This mechanism is even more pronounced when considering networks with a realistic degree of inhibition. This, could be the basis for the learning of structured behavior even in initially random networks.

  3. Synaptic and Nonsynaptic Plasticity Approximating Probabilistic Inference

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philip Joseph Tully

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The brain stores and retrieves information by initiating cascades of molecular changes that lead to a diverse repertoire of dynamical phenomena at higher levels of processing. Hebbian plasticity, neuromodulation, and homeostatic synaptic and intrinsic excitability all conspire to form and maintain memories. But it is still unclear how these seemingly redundant mechanisms could jointly orchestrate learning in a more unified system. To address this, we propose a Hebbian learning rule for spiking neurons inspired by Bayesian statistics. Synaptic weights and intrinsic currents are adapted on-line upon arrival of single spikes, which initiate a cascade of temporally interacting memory traces that locally estimate probabilities associated with relative neuronal activation levels. We show that the dynamics of these traces readily demonstrate a spike-timing dependence that stably returns to a set-point over long time scales, and that synaptic learning remains competitive despite this stability. Beyond unsupervised learning, we show how linking the traces with an externally driven signal could enable spike-based reinforcement learning. Neuronally, the traces are represented by an activity-dependent ion channel that is shown to regulate the input received by a postsynaptic cell and generate intrinsic graded persistent firing levels. We perform spike-based Bayesian learning in a simulated inference task using integrate and fire neurons that are Poisson-firing and fluctuation-driven, similar to the preferred regime of cortical neurons. Our results support the view that neurons can represent information in the form of probability distributions and that probabilistic inference can be a functional by-product of coupled synaptic and nonsynaptic mechanisms operating over several timescales. The model provides a biophysical realization of Bayesian computation by reconciling several observed neural phenomena whose functional effects are only partially understood

  4. Soft-bound synaptic plasticity increases storage capacity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark C W van Rossum

    Full Text Available Accurate models of synaptic plasticity are essential to understand the adaptive properties of the nervous system and for realistic models of learning and memory. Experiments have shown that synaptic plasticity depends not only on pre- and post-synaptic activity patterns, but also on the strength of the connection itself. Namely, weaker synapses are more easily strengthened than already strong ones. This so called soft-bound plasticity automatically constrains the synaptic strengths. It is known that this has important consequences for the dynamics of plasticity and the synaptic weight distribution, but its impact on information storage is unknown. In this modeling study we introduce an information theoretic framework to analyse memory storage in an online learning setting. We show that soft-bound plasticity increases a variety of performance criteria by about 18% over hard-bound plasticity, and likely maximizes the storage capacity of synapses.

  5. Calcineurin mediates homeostatic synaptic plasticity by regulating retinoic acid synthesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arendt, Kristin L; Zhang, Zhenjie; Ganesan, Subhashree; Hintze, Maik; Shin, Maggie M; Tang, Yitai; Cho, Ahryon; Graef, Isabella A; Chen, Lu

    2015-10-20

    Homeostatic synaptic plasticity is a form of non-Hebbian plasticity that maintains stability of the network and fidelity for information processing in response to prolonged perturbation of network and synaptic activity. Prolonged blockade of synaptic activity decreases resting Ca(2+) levels in neurons, thereby inducing retinoic acid (RA) synthesis and RA-dependent homeostatic synaptic plasticity; however, the signal transduction pathway that links reduced Ca(2+)-levels to RA synthesis remains unknown. Here we identify the Ca(2+)-dependent protein phosphatase calcineurin (CaN) as a key regulator for RA synthesis and homeostatic synaptic plasticity. Prolonged inhibition of CaN activity promotes RA synthesis in neurons, and leads to increased excitatory and decreased inhibitory synaptic transmission. These effects of CaN inhibitors on synaptic transmission are blocked by pharmacological inhibitors of RA synthesis or acute genetic deletion of the RA receptor RARα. Thus, CaN, acting upstream of RA, plays a critical role in gating RA signaling pathway in response to synaptic activity. Moreover, activity blockade-induced homeostatic synaptic plasticity is absent in CaN knockout neurons, demonstrating the essential role of CaN in RA-dependent homeostatic synaptic plasticity. Interestingly, in GluA1 S831A and S845A knockin mice, CaN inhibitor- and RA-induced regulation of synaptic transmission is intact, suggesting that phosphorylation of GluA1 C-terminal serine residues S831 and S845 is not required for CaN inhibitor- or RA-induced homeostatic synaptic plasticity. Thus, our study uncovers an unforeseen role of CaN in postsynaptic signaling, and defines CaN as the Ca(2+)-sensing signaling molecule that mediates RA-dependent homeostatic synaptic plasticity.

  6. Role of MicroRNA in Governing Synaptic Plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ye, Yuqin; Xu, Hongyu; Su, Xinhong; He, Xiaosheng

    2016-01-01

    Although synaptic plasticity in neural circuits is orchestrated by an ocean of genes, molecules, and proteins, the underlying mechanisms remain poorly understood. Recently, it is well acknowledged that miRNA exerts widespread regulation over the translation and degradation of target gene in nervous system. Increasing evidence suggests that quite a few specific miRNAs play important roles in various respects of synaptic plasticity including synaptogenesis, synaptic morphology alteration, and synaptic function modification. More importantly, the miRNA-mediated regulation of synaptic plasticity is not only responsible for synapse development and function but also involved in the pathophysiology of plasticity-related diseases. A review is made here on the function of miRNAs in governing synaptic plasticity, emphasizing the emerging regulatory role of individual miRNAs in synaptic morphological and functional plasticity, as well as their implications in neurological disorders. Understanding of the way in which miRNAs contribute to synaptic plasticity provides rational clues in establishing the novel therapeutic strategy for plasticity-related diseases.

  7. Role of MicroRNA in Governing Synaptic Plasticity

    OpenAIRE

    Yuqin Ye; Hongyu Xu; Xinhong Su; Xiaosheng He

    2016-01-01

    Although synaptic plasticity in neural circuits is orchestrated by an ocean of genes, molecules, and proteins, the underlying mechanisms remain poorly understood. Recently, it is well acknowledged that miRNA exerts widespread regulation over the translation and degradation of target gene in nervous system. Increasing evidence suggests that quite a few specific miRNAs play important roles in various respects of synaptic plasticity including synaptogenesis, synaptic morphology alteration, and s...

  8. Coexistence of Multiple Types of Synaptic Plasticity in Individual Hippocampal CA1 Pyramidal Neurons

    OpenAIRE

    Edelmann, Elke; Cepeda-Prado, Efrain; Leßmann, Volkmar

    2017-01-01

    Understanding learning and memory mechanisms is an important goal in neuroscience. To gain insights into the underlying cellular mechanisms for memory formation, synaptic plasticity processes are studied with various techniques in different brain regions. A valid model to scrutinize different ways to enhance or decrease synaptic transmission is recording of long-term potentiation (LTP) or long-term depression (LTD). At the single cell level, spike timing-dependent plasticity (STDP) protocols ...

  9. Ca2+-permeable AMPA receptors in homeostatic synaptic plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hey-Kyoung eLee

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Neurons possess diverse mechanisms of homeostatic adaptation to overall changes in neural and synaptic activity, which are critical for proper brain functions. Homeostatic regulation of excitatory synapses has been studied in the context of synaptic scaling, which allows neurons to adjust their excitatory synaptic gain to maintain their activity within a dynamic range. Recent evidence suggests that one of the main mechanisms underlying synaptic scaling is by altering the function of postsynaptic AMPA receptors (AMPARs, including synaptic expression of Ca2+-permeable (CP- AMPARs. CP-AMPARs endow synapses with unique properties, which may benefit adaptation of neurons to periods of inactivity as would occur when a major input is lost. This review will summarize how synaptic expression of CP-AMPARs is regulated during homeostatic synaptic plasticity in the context of synaptic scaling, and will address the potential functional consequences of altering synaptic CP-AMPAR content.

  10. Dynamic expression of long noncoding RNAs and repeat elements in synaptic plasticity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Maag, Jesper L. V.; Panja, Deb; Sporild, Ida; Patil, Sudarshan; Kaczorowski, Dominik C.; Bramham, Clive R.; Dinger, Marcel E.; Wibrand, Karin

    2015-01-01

    Long-term potentiation (LIP) of synaptic transmission is recognized as a cellular mechanism for learning and memory storage. Although de novo gene transcription is known to be required in the formation of stable LIP, the molecular mechanisms underlying synaptic plasticity remain elusive. Noncoding

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Froemke, Robert C; Martins, Ana Raquel O

    2011-09-01

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

  12. Common mechanisms of synaptic plasticity in vertebrates and invertebrates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glanzman, David L.

    2016-01-01

    Until recently, the literature on learning-related synaptic plasticity in invertebrates has been dominated by models assuming plasticity is mediated by presynaptic changes, whereas the vertebrate literature has been dominated by models assuming it is mediated by postsynaptic changes. Here I will argue that this situation does not reflect a biological reality and that, in fact, invertebrate and vertebrate nervous systems share a common set of mechanisms of synaptic plasticity. PMID:20152143

  13. Sleep and synaptic plasticity in the developing and adult brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frank, Marcos G

    2015-01-01

    Sleep is hypothesized to play an integral role in brain plasticity. This has traditionally been investigated using behavioral assays. In the last 10-15 years, studies combining sleep measurements with in vitro and in vivo models of synaptic plasticity have provided exciting new insights into how sleep alters synaptic strength. In addition, new theories have been proposed that integrate older ideas about sleep function and recent discoveries in the field of synaptic plasticity. There remain, however, important challenges and unanswered questions. For example, sleep does not appear to have a single effect on synaptic strength. An unbiased review of the literature indicates that the effects of sleep vary widely depending on ontogenetic stage, the type of waking experience (or stimulation protocols) that precede sleep and the type of neuronal synapse under examination. In this review, I discuss these key findings in the context of current theories that posit different roles for sleep in synaptic plasticity.

  14. The computational power of astrocyte mediated synaptic plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rogier eMin

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Research in the last two decades has made clear that astrocytes play a crucial role in the brain beyond their functions in energy metabolism and homeostasis. Many studies have shown that astrocytes can dynamically modulate neuronal excitability and synaptic plasticity, and might participate in higher brain functions like learning and memory. With the plethora of astrocyte-mediated signaling processes described in the literature today, the current challenge is to identify which of these processes happen under what physiological condition, and how this shapes information processing and, ultimately, behavior. To answer these questions will require a combination of advanced physiological, genetical and behavioral experiments. Additionally, mathematical modeling will prove crucial for testing predictions on the possible functions of astrocytes in neuronal networks, and to generate novel ideas as to how astrocytes can contribute to the complexity of the brain. Here, we aim to provide an outline of how astrocytes can interact with neurons. We do this by reviewing recent experimental literature on astrocyte-neuron interactions, discussing the dynamic effects of astrocytes on neuronal excitability and short- and long-term synaptic plasticity. Finally, we will outline the potential computational functions that astrocyte-neuron interactions can serve in the brain. We will discuss how astrocytes could govern metaplasticity in the brain, how they might organize the clustering of synaptic inputs, and how they could function as memory elements for neuronal activity. We conclude that astrocytes can enhance the computational power of neuronal networks in previously unexpected ways.

  15. Structural Components of Synaptic Plasticity and Memory Consolidation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bailey, Craig H.; Kandel, Eric R.; Harris, Kristen M.

    2015-01-01

    Consolidation of implicit memory in the invertebrate Aplysia and explicit memory in the mammalian hippocampus are associated with remodeling and growth of preexisting synapses and the formation of new synapses. Here, we compare and contrast structural components of the synaptic plasticity that underlies these two distinct forms of memory. In both cases, the structural changes involve time-dependent processes. Thus, some modifications are transient and may contribute to early formative stages of long-term memory, whereas others are more stable, longer lasting, and likely to confer persistence to memory storage. In addition, we explore the possibility that trans-synaptic signaling mechanisms governing de novo synapse formation during development can be reused in the adult for the purposes of structural synaptic plasticity and memory storage. Finally, we discuss how these mechanisms set in motion structural rearrangements that prepare a synapse to strengthen the same memory and, perhaps, to allow it to take part in other memories as a basis for understanding how their anatomical representation results in the enhanced expression and storage of memories in the brain. PMID:26134321

  16. Regular Exercise Prevents Sleep Deprivation Associated Impairment of Long-Term Memory and Synaptic Plasticity in The CA1 Area of the Hippocampus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zagaar, Munder; Dao, An; Levine, Amber; Alhaider, Ibrahim; Alkadhi, Karim

    2013-01-01

    Study Objectives: The present study aimed to investigate the effects of treadmill exercise on sleep deprivation (S-D)-induced impairment of hippocampal dependent long-term memory, late phase long-term potentiation (L-LTP) and its signaling cascade in the cornu ammonis 1 (CA1) area. Experimental Design: Animals were conditioned to run on treadmills for 4 weeks then deprived of sleep for 24 h using the columns-in-water method. We tested the effect of exercise and/or S-D on behavioral performance using a post-learning paradigm in the radial arm water maze (RAWM) and in vivo extracellular recording in the CA1 area. The levels of L-LTP-related molecules in the CA1 area were then assessed both before and after L-LTP induction. Measurements and Results: After 24 h of S-D, spatial long-term memory impairment in the RAWM and L-LTP suppression was prevented by 4 weeks of regular exercise. Regular exercise also restored the S-D-associated decreases in the basal levels of key signaling molecules such as: calcium/calmodulin kinase IV (CaMKIV), mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK/ERK), phosphorylated cAMP response element-binding protein (P-CREB) and brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), in the CA1 area. After L-LTP induction, regular exercise also prevented the S-D-induced down regulation of BDNF and P-CREB protein levels. Conclusions: The results suggest that our exercise protocol may prevent 24-h S-D-induced impairments in long-term memory and LTP by preventing deleterious changes in the basal and post-stimulation levels of P-CREB and BDNF associated with S-D. Citation: Zagaar M; Dao A; Levine A; Alhaider I; Alkadhi K. Regular exercise prevents sleep deprivation associated impairment of long-term memory and synaptic plasticity in the CA1 area of the hippocampus. SLEEP 2013;36(5):751-761. PMID:23633758

  17. Calcium dynamics predict direction of synaptic plasticity in striatal spiny projection neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jędrzejewska-Szmek, Joanna; Damodaran, Sriraman; Dorman, Daniel B; Blackwell, Kim T

    2017-04-01

    The striatum is a major site of learning and memory formation for sensorimotor and cognitive association. One of the mechanisms used by the brain for memory storage is synaptic plasticity - the long-lasting, activity-dependent change in synaptic strength. All forms of synaptic plasticity require an elevation in intracellular calcium, and a common hypothesis is that the amplitude and duration of calcium transients can determine the direction of synaptic plasticity. The utility of this hypothesis in the striatum is unclear in part because dopamine is required for striatal plasticity and in part because of the diversity in stimulation protocols. To test whether calcium can predict plasticity direction, we developed a calcium-based plasticity rule using a spiny projection neuron model with sophisticated calcium dynamics including calcium diffusion, buffering and pump extrusion. We utilized three spike timing-dependent plasticity (STDP) induction protocols, in which postsynaptic potentials are paired with precisely timed action potentials and the timing of such pairing determines whether potentiation or depression will occur. Results show that despite the variation in calcium dynamics, a single, calcium-based plasticity rule, which explicitly considers duration of calcium elevations, can explain the direction of synaptic weight change for all three STDP protocols. Additional simulations show that the plasticity rule correctly predicts the NMDA receptor dependence of long-term potentiation and the L-type channel dependence of long-term depression. By utilizing realistic calcium dynamics, the model reveals mechanisms controlling synaptic plasticity direction, and shows that the dynamics of calcium, not just calcium amplitude, are crucial for synaptic plasticity. © 2016 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. The requirement of BDNF for hippocampal synaptic plasticity is experience-dependent.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aarse, Janna; Herlitze, Stefan; Manahan-Vaughan, Denise

    2016-06-01

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) supports neuronal survival, growth, and differentiation and has been implicated in forms of hippocampus-dependent learning. In vitro, a specific role in hippocampal synaptic plasticity has been described, although not all experience-dependent forms of synaptic plasticity critically depend on BDNF. Synaptic plasticity is likely to enable long-term synaptic information storage and memory, and the induction of persistent (>24 h) forms, such as long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) is tightly associated with learning specific aspects of a spatial representation. Whether BDNF is required for persistent (>24 h) forms of LTP and LTD, and how it contributes to synaptic plasticity in the freely behaving rodent has never been explored. We examined LTP, LTD, and related forms of learning in the CA1 region of freely dependent mice that have a partial knockdown of BDNF (BDNF(+/-) ). We show that whereas early-LTD (synaptic plasticity may circumvent the need for BDNF, rather it may play a specific role in the optimization of weaker forms of plasticity. The finding that both learning-facilitated LTD and spatial reference memory are both impaired in BDNF(+/-) mice, suggests moreover, that it is critically required for the physiological encoding of hippocampus-dependent memory. © 2015 The Authors Hippocampus Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Synaptic plasticity modulation by circulating peptides and metaplasticity: Involvement in Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peineau, Stéphane; Rabiant, Kevin; Pierrefiche, Olivier; Potier, Brigitte

    2018-02-06

    Synaptic plasticity is a cellular process involved in learning and memory whose alteration in its two main forms (Long Term Depression (LTD) and Long Term Potentiation (LTP)), is observed in most brain pathologies, including neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease (AD). In humans, AD is associated at the cellular level with neuropathological lesions composed of extracellular deposits of β-amyloid (Aβ) protein aggregates and intracellular neurofibrillary tangles, cellular loss, neuroinflammation and a general brain homeostasis dysregulation. Thus, a dramatic synaptic environment perturbation is observed in AD patients, involving changes in brain neuropeptides, cytokines, growth factors or chemokines concentration and diffusion. Studies performed in animal models demonstrate that these circulating peptides strongly affect synaptic functions and in particular synaptic plasticity. Besides this neuromodulatory action of circulating peptides, other synaptic plasticity regulation mechanisms such as metaplasticity are altered in AD animal models. Here, we will review new insights into the study of synaptic plasticity regulatory/modulatory mechanisms which could influence the process of synaptic plasticity in the context of AD with a particular attention to the role of metaplasticity and peptide dependent neuromodulation. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. The discovery of GluA3-dependent synaptic plasticity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Renner, M.C.

    2016-01-01

    AMPA receptors (AMPARs) are responsible for fast excitatory synaptic transmission. GluA1-containing AMPARs have been extensively studied and play a key role in several forms of synaptic plasticity and memory. In contrast, GluA3-containing AMPARs have historically been ignored because they have

  1. The Ubiquitin-Proteasome Pathway and Synaptic Plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hegde, Ashok N.

    2010-01-01

    Proteolysis by the ubiquitin-proteasome pathway (UPP) has emerged as a new molecular mechanism that controls wide-ranging functions in the nervous system, including fine-tuning of synaptic connections during development and synaptic plasticity in the adult organism. In the UPP, attachment of a small protein, ubiquitin, tags the substrates for…

  2. Hippocampal synaptic plasticity in mice devoid of cellular prion protein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maglio, Laura E; Perez, Mariela F; Martins, Vilma R; Brentani, Ricardo R; Ramirez, Oscar A

    2004-11-24

    The cellular prion protein plays a role in the etiology of transmissible and inherited spongiform encephalopathies. However, the physiological role of the cellular prion protein is still under debate. Results regarding the synaptic transmission using the same strain of animals where the cellular prion protein gene was ablated are controversial, and need further investigation. In this work, we have studied the hippocampal synaptic transmission in mice devoid of normal cellular prion protein, and have shown that these animals present an increased excitability in this area by the lower threshold (20 Hz) to generate long-term potentiation (LTP) in hippocampal dentate gyrus when compared to wild-type animals. The mice devoid of normal cellular prion protein are also more sensitive to the blocking effects of dizocilpine and 2-amino-5-phosphonopentanoic acid on the hippocampal long-term potentiation generation. In situ hydridization experiments demonstrated overexpression of the mRNAs for the N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor NR2A and NR2B subunits in mice devoid of normal cellular prion protein. Therefore, our results indicate that these animals have an increased hippocampal synaptic plasticity which can be explained by a facilitated glutamatergic transmission. The higher expression of specific N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor subunits may account for these effects.

  3. Optical imaging of structural and functional synaptic plasticity in vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holtmaat, Anthony; Randall, Jerome; Cane, Michele

    2013-11-05

    The adult brain has long been viewed as a collection of neuronal networks that maintain a fixed configuration of synaptic connections. Brain plasticity and learning was thought to depend exclusively on changes in the gain and offset of these connections. Over the last 50 years, molecular and cellular studies of neuroplasticity have altered this view. Brain plasticity is now viewed as a continuum of structural changes that could vary from long-range axon growth to the twitching of dendritic spines and synaptic receptor composition dynamics. Plasticity proteins similar to those that drive neuronal development may underpin brain plasticity, and consequently could regulate adaptations to new experiences and learning. In vivo imaging has confirmed that neuronal plasticity in the adult brain involves subtle structural changes at synaptic connections, including synapse formation and pruning. Synaptic structural changes are associated with experience-dependent plasticity, learning, brain traumas and neurodegeneration. Owing to the expanding toolbox of in vivo imaging we have come to the brink of understanding the causal relationship between structural synaptic network dynamics and functional brain plasticity. This review summarizes the technical developments in the imaging of laboratory animals' brains in vivo and the insights they have provided into the mechanisms of brain plasticity and learning. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Interplay of multiple synaptic plasticity features in filamentary memristive devices for neuromorphic computing

    Science.gov (United States)

    La Barbera, Selina; Vincent, Adrien F.; Vuillaume, Dominique; Querlioz, Damien; Alibart, Fabien

    2016-12-01

    Bio-inspired computing represents today a major challenge at different levels ranging from material science for the design of innovative devices and circuits to computer science for the understanding of the key features required for processing of natural data. In this paper, we propose a detail analysis of resistive switching dynamics in electrochemical metallization cells for synaptic plasticity implementation. We show how filament stability associated to joule effect during switching can be used to emulate key synaptic features such as short term to long term plasticity transition and spike timing dependent plasticity. Furthermore, an interplay between these different synaptic features is demonstrated for object motion detection in a spike-based neuromorphic circuit. System level simulation presents robust learning and promising synaptic operation paving the way to complex bio-inspired computing systems composed of innovative memory devices.

  5. Coexistence of Multiple Types of Synaptic Plasticity in Individual Hippocampal CA1 Pyramidal Neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edelmann, Elke; Cepeda-Prado, Efrain; Leßmann, Volkmar

    2017-01-01

    Understanding learning and memory mechanisms is an important goal in neuroscience. To gain insights into the underlying cellular mechanisms for memory formation, synaptic plasticity processes are studied with various techniques in different brain regions. A valid model to scrutinize different ways to enhance or decrease synaptic transmission is recording of long-term potentiation (LTP) or long-term depression (LTD). At the single cell level, spike timing-dependent plasticity (STDP) protocols have emerged as a powerful tool to investigate synaptic plasticity with stimulation paradigms that also likely occur during memory formation in vivo . Such kind of plasticity can be induced by different STDP paradigms with multiple repeat numbers and stimulation patterns. They subsequently recruit or activate different molecular pathways and neuromodulators for induction and expression of STDP. Dopamine (DA) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) have been recently shown to be important modulators for hippocampal STDP at Schaffer collateral (SC)-CA1 synapses and are activated exclusively by distinguishable STDP paradigms. Distinct types of parallel synaptic plasticity in a given neuron depend on specific subcellular molecular prerequisites. Since the basal and apical dendrites of CA1 pyramidal neurons are known to be heterogeneous, and distance-dependent dendritic gradients for specific receptors and ion channels are described, the dendrites might provide domain specific locations for multiple types of synaptic plasticity in the same neuron. In addition to the distinct signaling and expression mechanisms of various types of LTP and LTD, activation of these different types of plasticity might depend on background brain activity states. In this article, we will discuss some ideas why multiple forms of synaptic plasticity can simultaneously and independently coexist and can contribute so effectively to increasing the efficacy of memory storage and processing capacity of the

  6. Dynamic expression of long noncoding RNAs and repeat elements in synaptic plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jesper Lars Viktor Maag

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Long-term potentiation (LTP of synaptic transmission is recognized as a cellular mechanism for learning and memory storage. Although de novo gene transcription is known to be required in the formation of stable LTP, the molecular mechanisms underlying synaptic plasticity remain elusive. Non-coding RNAs have emerged as major regulatory molecules that are abundantly and specifically expressed in the mammalian brain. By combining RNA-seq analysis with LTP induction in the dentate gyrus of live rats, we provide the first global transcriptomic analysis of synaptic plasticity in the adult brain. Expression profiles of mRNAs and long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs were obtained at 30 minutes, 2 hours and 5 hours after high-frequency stimulation of the perforant pathway. The temporal analysis revealed dynamic expression profiles of lncRNAs with many positively, and highly, correlated to protein-coding genes with known roles in synaptic plasticity, suggesting their possible involvement in LTP. In light of observations suggesting a role for retrotransposons in brain function, we examined the expression of various classes of repeat elements. Our analysis identifies dynamic regulation of LINE1 and SINE retrotransposons, and extensive regulation of tRNA. These experiments reveal a hitherto unknown complexity of gene expression in long-term synaptic plasticity involving the dynamic regulation of lncRNAs and repeat elements. These findings provide a broader foundation for elucidating the transcriptional and epigenetic regulation of synaptic plasticity in both the healthy brain and in neurodegenerative and neuropsychiatric disorders.

  7. Dendritic mechanisms controlling the threshold and timing requirement of synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Cuiping; Wang, Lang; Netoff, Theoden; Yuan, Li-Lian

    2011-03-01

    Active conductances located and operating on neuronal dendrites are expected to regulate synaptic integration and plasticity. We investigate how Kv4.2-mediated A-type K(+) channels and Ca(2+) -activated K(+) channels are involved in the induction process of Hebbian-type plasticity that requires correlated pre- and postsynaptic activities. In CA1 pyramidal neurons, robust long-term potentiation (LTP) induced by a theta burst pairing protocol usually occurred within a narrow window during which incoming synaptic potentials coincided with postsynaptic depolarization. Elimination of dendritic A-type K(+) currents in Kv4.2(-/-) mice, however, resulted in an expanded time window, making the induction of synaptic potentiation less dependent on the temporal relation of pre- and postsynaptic activity. For the other type of synaptic plasticity, long-term depression, the threshold was significantly increased in Kv4.2(-/-) mice. This shift in depression threshold was restored to normal when the appropriate amount of internal free calcium was chelated during induction. In concert with A-type channels, Ca(2+) -activated K(+) channels also exerted a sliding effect on synaptic plasticity. Blocking these channels in Kv4.2(-/-) mice resulted in an even larger potentiation while by contrast, the depression threshold was shifted further. In conclusion, dendritic A-type and Ca(2+) -activated K(+) channels dually regulate the timing-dependence and thresholds of synaptic plasticity in an additive way. Copyright © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  8. Dynamic expression of long noncoding RNAs and repeat elements in synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maag, Jesper L V; Panja, Debabrata; Sporild, Ida; Patil, Sudarshan; Kaczorowski, Dominik C; Bramham, Clive R; Dinger, Marcel E; Wibrand, Karin

    2015-01-01

    Long-term potentiation (LTP) of synaptic transmission is recognized as a cellular mechanism for learning and memory storage. Although de novo gene transcription is known to be required in the formation of stable LTP, the molecular mechanisms underlying synaptic plasticity remain elusive. Noncoding RNAs have emerged as major regulatory molecules that are abundantly and specifically expressed in the mammalian brain. By combining RNA-seq analysis with LTP induction in the dentate gyrus of live rats, we provide the first global transcriptomic analysis of synaptic plasticity in the adult brain. Expression profiles of mRNAs and long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) were obtained at 30 min, 2 and 5 h after high-frequency stimulation of the perforant pathway. The temporal analysis revealed dynamic expression profiles of lncRNAs with many positively, and highly, correlated to protein-coding genes with known roles in synaptic plasticity, suggesting their possible involvement in LTP. In light of observations suggesting a role for retrotransposons in brain function, we examined the expression of various classes of repeat elements. Our analysis identifies dynamic regulation of LINE1 and SINE retrotransposons, and extensive regulation of tRNA. These experiments reveal a hitherto unknown complexity of gene expression in long-term synaptic plasticity involving the dynamic regulation of lncRNAs and repeat elements. These findings provide a broader foundation for elucidating the transcriptional and epigenetic regulation of synaptic plasticity in both the healthy brain and in neurodegenerative and neuropsychiatric disorders.

  9. Role of amyloid β protein receptors in mediating synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yu; Sun, Zhongqing; Cao, Qiaoyu; Chen, Meiwan; Luo, Huanmin; Lin, Xi; Xiao, Fei

    2017-04-01

    There are few diseases in modern biomedicine that have garnered as much scientific interest and public concern as Alzheimer's disease (AD). The amyloid hypothesis has become the dominant model of AD pathogenesis; however, the details of the hypothesis are changing over time. Recently, given the increasing recognition, subtle effects of amyloid β protein (Aβ) on synaptic efficacy may be critical to AD progression. Synaptic plasticity is the important neurochemical foundation of learning and memory. Recent studies have identified that soluble Aβ oligomers combine with certain receptors to impair synaptic plasticity in AD, which advanced the amyloid hypothesis. The aim of the present review was to summarize the role of Aβ-relevant receptors in regulating synaptic plasticity and their downstream signaling cascades, which may provide novel insights into the understanding of the pathogenesis of AD and the development of therapeutic strategies to slow down the progression of AD-associated memory decline in the early stages.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonansco, Christian; Fuenzalida, Marco

    2016-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian Bonansco

    2016-01-01

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

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2008-01-01

    . Future clinical progress, however, requires more detailed evaluation of possible side effects of this treatment. Until now it has been unknown whether rAAV vector-based NPY overexpression in the hippocampus alters normal synaptic transmission and plasticity, which could disturb learning and memory...... processing. Here we show, by electrophysiological recordings in CA1 of the hippocampal formation of rats, that hippocampal NPY gene transfer into the intact brain does not affect basal synaptic transmission, but slightly alters short-term synaptic plasticity, most likely via NPY Y2 receptor...... is partially impaired and animals have a slower rate of hippocampal-based spatial discrimination learning. These data provide the first evidence that rAAV-based gene therapy using NPY exerts relative limited effect on synaptic plasticity and learning in the hippocampus, and therefore this approach could...

  13. Astrocytes mediate in vivo cholinergic-induced synaptic plasticity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marta Navarrete

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Long-term potentiation (LTP of synaptic transmission represents the cellular basis of learning and memory. Astrocytes have been shown to regulate synaptic transmission and plasticity. However, their involvement in specific physiological processes that induce LTP in vivo remains unknown. Here we show that in vivo cholinergic activity evoked by sensory stimulation or electrical stimulation of the septal nucleus increases Ca²⁺ in hippocampal astrocytes and induces LTP of CA3-CA1 synapses, which requires cholinergic muscarinic (mAChR and metabotropic glutamate receptor (mGluR activation. Stimulation of cholinergic pathways in hippocampal slices evokes astrocyte Ca²⁺ elevations, postsynaptic depolarizations of CA1 pyramidal neurons, and LTP of transmitter release at single CA3-CA1 synapses. Like in vivo, these effects are mediated by mAChRs, and this cholinergic-induced LTP (c-LTP also involves mGluR activation. Astrocyte Ca²⁺ elevations and LTP are absent in IP₃R2 knock-out mice. Downregulating astrocyte Ca²⁺ signal by loading astrocytes with BAPTA or GDPβS also prevents LTP, which is restored by simultaneous astrocyte Ca²⁺ uncaging and postsynaptic depolarization. Therefore, cholinergic-induced LTP requires astrocyte Ca²⁺ elevations, which stimulate astrocyte glutamate release that activates mGluRs. The cholinergic-induced LTP results from the temporal coincidence of the postsynaptic activity and the astrocyte Ca²⁺ signal simultaneously evoked by cholinergic activity. Therefore, the astrocyte Ca²⁺ signal is necessary for cholinergic-induced synaptic plasticity, indicating that astrocytes are directly involved in brain storage information.

  14. Synaptic Plasticity in the Nucleus Accumbens: Lessons Learned from Experience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, Brandon D; Kashima, Daniel T; Manz, Kevin M; Grueter, Carrie A; Grueter, Brad A

    2018-01-24

    Synaptic plasticity contributes to behavioral adaptations. As a key node in the reward pathway, the nucleus accumbens (NAc) is important for determining motivation-to-action outcomes. Across animal models of motivation including addiction, depression, anxiety, and hedonic feeding, selective recruitment of neuromodulatory signals and plasticity mechanisms have been a focus of physiologists and behaviorists alike. Experience-dependent plasticity mechanisms within the NAc vary depending on the distinct afferents and cell-types over time. A greater understanding of molecular mechanisms determining how these changes in synaptic strength track with behavioral adaptations will provide insight into the process of learning and memory along with identifying maladaptations underlying pathological behavior. Here, we summarize recent findings detailing how changes in NAc synaptic strength and mechanisms of plasticity manifest in various models of motivational disorders.

  15. Glutamatergic synaptic plasticity in the mesocorticolimbic system in addiction

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

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

  16. Altered synaptic plasticity in Tourette's syndrome and its relationship to motor skill learning.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valerie Cathérine Brandt

    Full Text Available Gilles de la Tourette syndrome is a neuropsychiatric disorder characterized by motor and phonic tics that can be considered motor responses to preceding inner urges. It has been shown that Tourette patients have inferior performance in some motor learning tasks and reduced synaptic plasticity induced by transcranial magnetic stimulation. However, it has not been investigated whether altered synaptic plasticity is directly linked to impaired motor skill acquisition in Tourette patients. In this study, cortical plasticity was assessed by measuring motor-evoked potentials before and after paired associative stimulation in 14 Tourette patients (13 male; age 18-39 and 15 healthy controls (12 male; age 18-33. Tic and urge severity were assessed using the Yale Global Tic Severity Scale and the Premonitory Urges for Tics Scale. Motor learning was assessed 45 minutes after inducing synaptic plasticity and 9 months later, using the rotary pursuit task. On average, long-term potentiation-like effects in response to the paired associative stimulation were present in healthy controls but not in patients. In Tourette patients, long-term potentiation-like effects were associated with more and long-term depression-like effects with less severe urges and tics. While motor learning did not differ between patients and healthy controls 45 minutes after inducing synaptic plasticity, the learning curve of the healthy controls started at a significantly higher level than the Tourette patients' 9 months later. Induced synaptic plasticity correlated positively with motor skills in healthy controls 9 months later. The present study confirms previously found long-term improvement in motor performance after paired associative stimulation in healthy controls but not in Tourette patients. Tourette patients did not show long-term potentiation in response to PAS and also showed reduced levels of motor skill consolidation after 9 months compared to healthy controls. Moreover

  17. Neural ECM molecules in axonal and synaptic homeostatic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frischknecht, Renato; Chang, Kae-Jiun; Rasband, Matthew N; Seidenbecher, Constanze I

    2014-01-01

    Neural circuits can express different forms of plasticity. So far, Hebbian synaptic plasticity was considered the most important plastic phenomenon, but over the last decade, homeostatic mechanisms gained more interest because they can explain how a neuronal network maintains stable baseline function despite multiple plastic challenges, like developmental plasticity, learning, or lesion. Such destabilizing influences can be counterbalanced by the mechanisms of homeostatic plasticity, which restore the stability of neuronal circuits. Synaptic scaling is a mechanism in which neurons can detect changes in their own firing rates through a set of molecular sensors that then regulate receptor trafficking to scale the accumulation of glutamate receptors at synaptic sites. Additional homeostatic mechanisms allow local changes in synaptic activation to generate local synaptic adaptations and network-wide changes in activity, which lead to adjustments in the balance between excitation and inhibition. The molecular pathways underlying these forms of homeostatic plasticity are currently under intense investigation, and it becomes clear that the extracellular matrix (ECM) of the brain, which surrounds individual neurons and integrates them into the tissue, is an important element in these processes. As a highly dynamic structure, which can be remodeled and degraded in an activity-dependent manner and in concerted action of neurons and glial cells, it can on one hand promote structural and functional plasticity and on the other hand stabilize neural microcircuits. This chapter highlights the composition of brain ECM with particular emphasis on perisynaptic and axonal matrix formations and its involvement in plastic and adaptive processes of the central nervous system.

  18. Plasticity resembling spike-timing dependent synaptic plasticity: the evidence in human cortex

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    Florian Müller-Dahlhaus

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Spike-timing dependent plasticity (STDP has been studied extensively in a variety of animal models during the past decade but whether it can be studied at the systems level of the human cortex has been a matter of debate. Only recently newly developed non-invasive brain stimulation techniques such as transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS have made it possible to induce and assess timing dependent plasticity in conscious human subjects. This review will present a critical synopsis of these experiments, which suggest that several of the principal characteristics and molecular mechanisms of TMS-induced plasticity correspond to those of STDP as studied at a cellular level. TMS combined with a second phasic stimulation modality can induce bidirectional long-lasting changes in the excitability of the stimulated cortex, whose polarity depends on the order of the associated stimulus-evoked events within a critical time window of tens of milliseconds. Pharmacological evidence suggests an NMDA receptor mediated form of synaptic plasticity. Studies in human motor cortex demonstrated that motor learning significantly modulates TMS-induced timing dependent plasticity, and, conversely, may be modulated bidirectionally by prior TMS-induced plasticity, providing circumstantial evidence that long-term potentiation-like mechanisms may be involved in motor learning. In summary, convergent evidence is being accumulated for the contention that it is now possible to induce STDP-like changes in the intact human central nervous system by means of TMS to study and interfere with synaptic plasticity in neural circuits in the context of behaviour such as learning and memory.

  19. Hebbian Wiring Plasticity Generates Efficient Network Structures for Robust Inference with Synaptic Weight Plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hiratani, Naoki; Fukai, Tomoki

    2016-01-01

    In the adult mammalian cortex, a small fraction of spines are created and eliminated every day, and the resultant synaptic connection structure is highly nonrandom, even in local circuits. However, it remains unknown whether a particular synaptic connection structure is functionally advantageous in local circuits, and why creation and elimination of synaptic connections is necessary in addition to rich synaptic weight plasticity. To answer these questions, we studied an inference task model through theoretical and numerical analyses. We demonstrate that a robustly beneficial network structure naturally emerges by combining Hebbian-type synaptic weight plasticity and wiring plasticity. Especially in a sparsely connected network, wiring plasticity achieves reliable computation by enabling efficient information transmission. Furthermore, the proposed rule reproduces experimental observed correlation between spine dynamics and task performance.

  20. Endocannabinoid System and Synaptic Plasticity: Implications for Emotional Responses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María-Paz Viveros

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available The endocannabinoid system has been involved in the regulation of anxiety, and proposed as an inhibitory modulator of neuronal, behavioral and adrenocortical responses to stressful stimuli. Brain regions such as the amygdala, hippocampus and cortex, which are directly involved in the regulation of emotional behavior, contain high densities of cannabinoid CB1 receptors. Mutant mice lacking CB1 receptors show anxiogenic and depressive-like behaviors as well as an altered hypothalamus pituitary adrenal axis activity, whereas enhancement of endocannabinoid signaling produces anxiolytic and antidepressant-like effects. Genetic and pharmacological approaches also support an involvement of endocannabinoids in extinction of aversive memories. Thus, the endocannabinoid system appears to play a pivotal role in the regulation of emotional states. Endocannabinoids have emerged as mediators of short- and long- term synaptic plasticity in diverse brain structures. Despite the fact that most of the studies on this field have been performed using in vitro models, endocannabinoid-mediated plasticity might be considered as a plausible candidate underlying some of the diverse physiological functions of the endogenous cannabinoid system, including developmental, affective and cognitive processes. In this paper, we will focus on the functional relevance of endocannabinoid-mediated plasticity within the framework of emotional responses. Alterations of the endocannabinoid system may constitute an important factor in the aetiology of certain neuropsychiatric disorders, and, in turn, enhancers of endocannabinoid signaling could represent a potential therapeutical tool in the treatment of both anxiety and depressive symptoms.

  1. Adiponectin modulates synaptic plasticity in hippocampal dentate gyrus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pousti, Farideh; Ahmadi, Ramesh; Mirahmadi, Fatemeh; Hosseinmardi, Narges; Rohampour, Kambiz

    2018-01-01

    Recent studies have suggested the involvement of some metabolic hormones in memory formation and synaptic plasticity. Insulin dysfunction is known as an essential process in the pathogenesis of sporadic Alzheimer's disease (AD). In this study we examined whether adiponectin (ADN), as an insulin-sensitizing adipokine, could affect hippocampal synaptic plasticity. Field potential recordings were performed on intracerebroventricular (icv) cannulated urethane anesthetized rats. After baseline recording from dentate gyrus (DG) and 10min prior to high/low frequency stimulation (HFS/LFS), 10μl icv ADN (600nm) were injected. The slope of field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSP) and the amplitude of population spikes (PS) were recorded in response to perforanth path (PP) stimulation. Paired pulse stimuli and ADN injection without any stimulation protocols were also evaluated. Application of ADN before HFS increased PS amplitude recorded in DG significantly (P≤0.05) in comparison to HFS only group. ADN suppressed the potency of LFS to induce long-term depression (LTD), causing a significant difference between fEPSP slope (P≤0.05) and PS amplitude (P≤0.01) between ADN+LFS and ADN group. Paired pulse stimuli applied at 20ms intervals showed more paired pulse facilitation (PPF), when applied after ADN (P≤0.05). ADN induced a chemical long-term potentiation (LTP) in which fEPSP slope and PS amplitude increased significantly (P≤0.01 and P≤0.05, respectively). It is concluded that ADN is able to potentiate the HFS-induced LTP and suppress LFS-induced LTD. ADN caused a chemical LTP, when applied without any tetanic protocol. ADN may enhance the presynaptic release probability. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  2. Intracellular GPCRs Play Key Roles in Synaptic Plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jong, Yuh-Jiin I; Harmon, Steven K; O'Malley, Karen L

    2018-02-16

    The trillions of synaptic connections within the human brain are shaped by experience and neuronal activity, both of which underlie synaptic plasticity and ultimately learning and memory. G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) play key roles in synaptic plasticity by strengthening or weakening synapses and/or shaping dendritic spines. While most studies of synaptic plasticity have focused on cell surface receptors and their downstream signaling partners, emerging data point to a critical new role for the very same receptors to signal from inside the cell. Intracellular receptors have been localized to the nucleus, endoplasmic reticulum, lysosome, and mitochondria. From these intracellular positions, such receptors may couple to different signaling systems, display unique desensitization patterns, and/or show distinct patterns of subcellular distribution. Intracellular GPCRs can be activated at the cell surface, endocytosed, and transported to an intracellular site or simply activated in situ by de novo ligand synthesis, diffusion of permeable ligands, or active transport of non-permeable ligands. Current findings reinforce the notion that intracellular GPCRs play a dynamic role in synaptic plasticity and learning and memory. As new intracellular GPCR roles are defined, the need to selectively tailor agonists and/or antagonists to both intracellular and cell surface receptors may lead to the development of more effective therapeutic tools.

  3. Long-term green tea catechin administration prevents spatial learning and memory impairment in senescence-accelerated mouse prone-8 mice by decreasing Abeta1-42 oligomers and upregulating synaptic plasticity-related proteins in the hippocampus.

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    Li, Q; Zhao, H F; Zhang, Z F; Liu, Z G; Pei, X R; Wang, J B; Li, Y

    2009-10-20

    The senescence-accelerated mouse prone-8 (SAMP8) is characterized by early onset of learning and memory deficits along with spontaneous overproduction of soluble beta-amyloid peptide (Abeta) in the brain. In our study, 4 month old male SAMP8 mice were orally administered 0.05% and 0.1% green tea catechins (GTC, w/v) in drinking water for 6 months. We found that a supplementation with 0.05% or 0.1% GTC prevented spatial learning and memory impairments of mice in the Morris water maze. Better performance of GTC-treated mice was associated with decreased levels of Abeta(1-42) oligomers in the hippocampus. The activity of the protein kinase A/cAMP-response element binding protein (PKA/CREB) pathway, one of the molecular targets of Abeta oligomers which is crucial for late long-term potentiation and long-term memory formation, was significantly increased after GTC administration. We also found that chronic 0.05% or 0.1% GTC consumption prevented the reductions of three representative proteins of synaptic function and synaptic structure, including brain-derived neurotrophic factor(BDNF), post-synaptic density protein-95 (PSD95) and Ca(2+)/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII). These results demonstrated that long-term 0.05% or 0.1% green tea catechin administration may prevent spatial learning and memory decline of SAMP8 mice by decreasing Abeta(1-42) oligomers and upregulating synaptic plasticity-related proteins in the hippocampus.

  4. A Calcium-Dependent Plasticity Rule for HCN Channels Maintains Activity Homeostasis and Stable Synaptic Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Honnuraiah, Suraj; Narayanan, Rishikesh

    2013-01-01

    Theoretical and computational frameworks for synaptic plasticity and learning have a long and cherished history, with few parallels within the well-established literature for plasticity of voltage-gated ion channels. In this study, we derive rules for plasticity in the hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN) channels, and assess the synergy between synaptic and HCN channel plasticity in establishing stability during synaptic learning. To do this, we employ a conductance-based model for the hippocampal pyramidal neuron, and incorporate synaptic plasticity through the well-established Bienenstock-Cooper-Munro (BCM)-like rule for synaptic plasticity, wherein the direction and strength of the plasticity is dependent on the concentration of calcium influx. Under this framework, we derive a rule for HCN channel plasticity to establish homeostasis in synaptically-driven firing rate, and incorporate such plasticity into our model. In demonstrating that this rule for HCN channel plasticity helps maintain firing rate homeostasis after bidirectional synaptic plasticity, we observe a linear relationship between synaptic plasticity and HCN channel plasticity for maintaining firing rate homeostasis. Motivated by this linear relationship, we derive a calcium-dependent rule for HCN-channel plasticity, and demonstrate that firing rate homeostasis is maintained in the face of synaptic plasticity when moderate and high levels of cytosolic calcium influx induced depression and potentiation of the HCN-channel conductance, respectively. Additionally, we show that such synergy between synaptic and HCN-channel plasticity enhances the stability of synaptic learning through metaplasticity in the BCM-like synaptic plasticity profile. Finally, we demonstrate that the synergistic interaction between synaptic and HCN-channel plasticity preserves robustness of information transfer across the neuron under a rate-coding schema. Our results establish specific physiological roles

  5. Possible Contributions of a Novel Form of Synaptic Plasticity in "Aplysia" to Reward, Memory, and Their Dysfunctions in Mammalian Brain

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    Hawkins, Robert D.

    2013-01-01

    Recent studies in "Aplysia" have identified a new variation of synaptic plasticity in which modulatory transmitters enhance spontaneous release of glutamate, which then acts on postsynaptic receptors to recruit mechanisms of intermediate- and long-term plasticity. In this review I suggest the hypothesis that similar plasticity occurs in…

  6. Cell-specific synaptic plasticity induced by network oscillations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zarnadze, Shota; Bäuerle, Peter; Santos-Torres, Julio; Böhm, Claudia; Schmitz, Dietmar; Geiger, Jörg Rp; Dugladze, Tamar; Gloveli, Tengis

    2016-05-24

    Gamma rhythms are known to contribute to the process of memory encoding. However, little is known about the underlying mechanisms at the molecular, cellular and network levels. Using local field potential recording in awake behaving mice and concomitant field potential and whole-cell recordings in slice preparations we found that gamma rhythms lead to activity-dependent modification of hippocampal networks, including alterations in sharp wave-ripple complexes. Network plasticity, expressed as long-lasting increases in sharp wave-associated synaptic currents, exhibits enhanced excitatory synaptic strength in pyramidal cells that is induced postsynaptically and depends on metabotropic glutamate receptor-5 activation. In sharp contrast, alteration of inhibitory synaptic strength is independent of postsynaptic activation and less pronounced. Further, we found a cell type-specific, directionally biased synaptic plasticity of two major types of GABAergic cells, parvalbumin- and cholecystokinin-expressing interneurons. Thus, we propose that gamma frequency oscillations represent a network state that introduces long-lasting synaptic plasticity in a cell-specific manner.

  7. Synaptic Plasticity, Engrams, and Network Oscillations in Amygdala Circuits for Storage and Retrieval of Emotional Memories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bocchio, Marco; Nabavi, Sadegh; Capogna, Marco

    2017-05-17

    The neuronal circuits of the basolateral amygdala (BLA) are crucial for acquisition, consolidation, retrieval, and extinction of associative emotional memories. Synaptic plasticity in BLA neurons is essential for associative emotional learning and is a candidate mechanism through which subsets of BLA neurons (commonly termed "engram") are recruited during learning and reactivated during memory retrieval. In parallel, synchronous oscillations in the theta and gamma bands between the BLA and interconnected structures have been shown to occur during consolidation and retrieval of emotional memories. Understanding how these cellular and network phenomena interact is vital to decipher the roles of emotional memory formation and storage in the healthy and pathological brain. Here, we review data on synaptic plasticity, engrams, and network oscillations in the rodent BLA. We explore mechanisms through which synaptic plasticity, engrams, and long-range synchrony might be interconnected. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. EEA1 restores homeostatic synaptic plasticity in hippocampal neurons from Rett syndrome mice.

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    Xu, Xin; Pozzo-Miller, Lucas

    2017-08-15

    Rett syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder caused by loss-of-function mutations in MECP2, the gene encoding the transcriptional regulator methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2). Mecp2 deletion in mice results in an imbalance of excitation and inhibition in hippocampal neurons, which affects 'Hebbian' synaptic plasticity. We show that Mecp2-deficient neurons also lack homeostatic synaptic plasticity, likely due to reduced levels of EEA1, a protein involved in AMPA receptor endocytosis. Expression of EEA1 restored homeostatic synaptic plasticity in Mecp2-deficient neurons, providing novel targets of intervention in Rett syndrome. Rett syndrome is a neurodevelopmental disorder caused by loss-of-function mutations in MECP2, the gene encoding the transcriptional regulator methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MeCP2). Deletion of Mecp2 in mice results in an imbalance of synaptic excitation and inhibition in hippocampal pyramidal neurons, which affects 'Hebbian' long-term synaptic plasticity. Since the excitatory-inhibitory balance is maintained by homeostatic mechanisms, we examined the role of MeCP2 in homeostatic synaptic plasticity (HSP) at excitatory synapses. Negative feedback HSP, also known as synaptic scaling, maintains the global synaptic strength of individual neurons in response to sustained alterations in neuronal activity. Hippocampal neurons from Mecp2 knockout (KO) mice do not show the characteristic homeostatic scaling up of the amplitude of miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs) and of synaptic levels of the GluA1 subunit of AMPA-type glutamate receptors after 48 h silencing with the Na + channel blocker tetrodotoxin. This deficit in HSP is bidirectional because Mecp2 KO neurons also failed to scale down mEPSC amplitudes and GluA1 synaptic levels after 48 h blockade of type A GABA receptor (GABA A R)-mediated inhibition with bicuculline. Consistent with the role of synaptic trafficking of AMPA-type of glutamate receptors in HSP, Mecp2 KO neurons

  9. Reactive Oxygen Species: Physiological and Physiopathological Effects on Synaptic Plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beckhauser, Thiago Fernando; Francis-Oliveira, José; De Pasquale, Roberto

    2016-01-01

    In the mammalian central nervous system, reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation is counterbalanced by antioxidant defenses. When large amounts of ROS accumulate, antioxidant mechanisms become overwhelmed and oxidative cellular stress may occur. Therefore, ROS are typically characterized as toxic molecules, oxidizing membrane lipids, changing the conformation of proteins, damaging nucleic acids, and causing deficits in synaptic plasticity. High ROS concentrations are associated with a decline in cognitive functions, as observed in some neurodegenerative disorders and age-dependent decay of neuroplasticity. Nevertheless, controlled ROS production provides the optimal redox state for the activation of transductional pathways involved in synaptic changes. Since ROS may regulate neuronal activity and elicit negative effects at the same time, the distinction between beneficial and deleterious consequences is unclear. In this regard, this review assesses current research and describes the main sources of ROS in neurons, specifying their involvement in synaptic plasticity and distinguishing between physiological and pathological processes implicated. PMID:27625575

  10. Spontaneous Activity Drives Local Synaptic Plasticity In Vivo

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Winnubst, Johan; Cheyne, Juliette E; Niculescu, Dragos; Lohmann, C.

    2015-01-01

    Spontaneous activity fine-tunes neuronal connections in the developing brain. To explore the underlying synaptic plasticity mechanisms, we monitored naturally occurring changes in spontaneous activity at individual synapses with whole-cell patch-clamp recordings and simultaneous calcium imaging in

  11. Isoform Specificity of Protein Kinase Cs in Synaptic Plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sossin, Wayne S.

    2007-01-01

    Protein kinase Cs (PKCs) are implicated in many forms of synaptic plasticity. However, the specific isoform(s) of PKC that underlie(s) these events are often not known. We have used "Aplysia" as a model system in order to investigate the isoform specificity of PKC actions due to the presence of fewer isoforms and a large number of documented…

  12. Corticosterone alters AMPAR mobility and facilitates bidirectional synaptic plasticity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Martin, S.; Henley, J.M.; Holman, D.; Zhou, M.; Wiegert, O.; van Spronsen, M.; Joëls, M.; Hoogenraad, C.C.; Krugers, H.J.

    2009-01-01

    Background: The stress hormone corticosterone has the ability both to enhance and suppress synaptic plasticity and learning and memory processes. However, until today there is very little known about the molecular mechanism that underlies the bidirectional effects of stress and corticosteroid

  13. Neurotrophin-3 restores synaptic plasticity in the striatum of a mouse model of Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gómez-Pineda, Victor G; Torres-Cruz, Francisco M; Vivar-Cortés, César I; Hernández-Echeagaray, Elizabeth

    2018-02-17

    Neurotrophin-3 (NT-3) is expressed in the mouse striatum; however, it is not clear the NT-3 role in striatal physiology. The expression levels of mRNAs and immune localization of the NT-3 protein and its receptor TrkC are altered in the striatum following damage induced by an in vivo treatment with 3-nitropropionic acid (3-NP), a mitochondrial toxin used to mimic the histopathological hallmarks of Huntington's disease (HD). The aim of this study was to evaluate the role of NT-3 on corticostriatal synaptic transmission and its plasticity in both the control and damaged striatum. Corticostriatal population spikes were electrophysiologically recorded and striatal synaptic plasticity was induced by high-frequency stimulation. Further, the phosphorylation status of Trk receptors was tested under conditions that imitated electrophysiological experiments. NT-3 modulates both synaptic transmission and plasticity in the striatum; nonetheless, synaptic plasticity was modified by the 3-NP treatment, where instead of producing striatal long-term depression (LTD), long-term potentiation (LTP) was obtained. Moreover, the administration of NT-3 in the recording bath restored the plasticity observed under control conditions (LTD) in this model of striatal degeneration. NT-3 modulates corticostriatal transmission through TrkB stimulation and restores striatal LTD by signaling through its TrkC receptor. © 2018 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  14. Chondroitin Sulfate Induces Depression of Synaptic Transmission and Modulation of Neuronal Plasticity in Rat Hippocampal Slices

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    Elisa Albiñana

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available It is currently known that in CNS the extracellular matrix is involved in synaptic stabilization and limitation of synaptic plasticity. However, it has been reported that the treatment with chondroitinase following injury allows the formation of new synapses and increased plasticity and functional recovery. So, we hypothesize that some components of extracellular matrix may modulate synaptic transmission. To test this hypothesis we evaluated the effects of chondroitin sulphate (CS on excitatory synaptic transmission, cellular excitability, and neuronal plasticity using extracellular recordings in the CA1 area of rat hippocampal slices. CS caused a reversible depression of evoked field excitatory postsynaptic potentials in a concentration-dependent manner. CS also reduced the population spike amplitude evoked after orthodromic stimulation but not when the population spikes were antidromically evoked; in this last case a potentiation was observed. CS also enhanced paired-pulse facilitation and long-term potentiation. Our study provides evidence that CS, a major component of the brain perineuronal net and extracellular matrix, has a function beyond the structural one, namely, the modulation of synaptic transmission and neuronal plasticity in the hippocampus.

  15. Functional consequences of pre- and postsynaptic expression of synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costa, Rui Ponte; Mizusaki, Beatriz E P; Sjöström, P Jesper; van Rossum, Mark C W

    2017-03-05

    Growing experimental evidence shows that both homeostatic and Hebbian synaptic plasticity can be expressed presynaptically as well as postsynaptically. In this review, we start by discussing this evidence and methods used to determine expression loci. Next, we discuss the functional consequences of this diversity in pre- and postsynaptic expression of both homeostatic and Hebbian synaptic plasticity. In particular, we explore the functional consequences of a biologically tuned model of pre- and postsynaptically expressed spike-timing-dependent plasticity complemented with postsynaptic homeostatic control. The pre- and postsynaptic expression in this model predicts (i) more reliable receptive fields and sensory perception, (ii) rapid recovery of forgotten information (memory savings), and (iii) reduced response latencies, compared with a model with postsynaptic expression only. Finally, we discuss open questions that will require a considerable research effort to better elucidate how the specific locus of expression of homeostatic and Hebbian plasticity alters synaptic and network computations.This article is part of the themed issue 'Integrating Hebbian and homeostatic plasticity'. © 2017 The Authors.

  16. Modulation of Autophagy by BDNF Underlies Synaptic Plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nikoletopoulou, Vassiliki; Sidiropoulou, Kyriaki; Kallergi, Emmanouela; Dalezios, Yannis; Tavernarakis, Nektarios

    2017-07-05

    Autophagy is crucial for neuronal integrity. Loss of key autophagic components leads to progressive neurodegeneration and structural defects in pre- and postsynaptic morphologies. However, the molecular mechanisms regulating autophagy in the brain remain elusive. Similarly, while it is widely accepted that protein turnover is required for synaptic plasticity, the contribution of autophagy to the degradation of synaptic proteins is unknown. Here, we report that BDNF signaling via the tropomyosin receptor kinase B (TrkB) and the phosphatidylinositol-3' kinase (PI3K)/Akt pathway suppresses autophagy in vivo. In addition, we demonstrate that suppression of autophagy is required for BDNF-induced synaptic plasticity and for memory enhancement under conditions of nutritional stress. Finally, we identify three key remodelers of postsynaptic densities as cargo of autophagy. Our results establish autophagy as a pivotal component of BDNF signaling, which is essential for BDNF-induced synaptic plasticity. This molecular mechanism underlies behavioral adaptations that increase fitness in times of scarcity. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Coexistence of Multiple Types of Synaptic Plasticity in Individual Hippocampal CA1 Pyramidal Neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edelmann, Elke; Cepeda-Prado, Efrain; Leßmann, Volkmar

    2017-01-01

    Understanding learning and memory mechanisms is an important goal in neuroscience. To gain insights into the underlying cellular mechanisms for memory formation, synaptic plasticity processes are studied with various techniques in different brain regions. A valid model to scrutinize different ways to enhance or decrease synaptic transmission is recording of long-term potentiation (LTP) or long-term depression (LTD). At the single cell level, spike timing-dependent plasticity (STDP) protocols have emerged as a powerful tool to investigate synaptic plasticity with stimulation paradigms that also likely occur during memory formation in vivo. Such kind of plasticity can be induced by different STDP paradigms with multiple repeat numbers and stimulation patterns. They subsequently recruit or activate different molecular pathways and neuromodulators for induction and expression of STDP. Dopamine (DA) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) have been recently shown to be important modulators for hippocampal STDP at Schaffer collateral (SC)-CA1 synapses and are activated exclusively by distinguishable STDP paradigms. Distinct types of parallel synaptic plasticity in a given neuron depend on specific subcellular molecular prerequisites. Since the basal and apical dendrites of CA1 pyramidal neurons are known to be heterogeneous, and distance-dependent dendritic gradients for specific receptors and ion channels are described, the dendrites might provide domain specific locations for multiple types of synaptic plasticity in the same neuron. In addition to the distinct signaling and expression mechanisms of various types of LTP and LTD, activation of these different types of plasticity might depend on background brain activity states. In this article, we will discuss some ideas why multiple forms of synaptic plasticity can simultaneously and independently coexist and can contribute so effectively to increasing the efficacy of memory storage and processing capacity of the

  18. Hippocampal testosterone relates to reference memory performance and synaptic plasticity in male rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kristina eSchulz

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Steroids are important neuromodulators influencing cognitive performance and synaptic plasticity. While the majority of literature concerns adrenal- and gonadectomized animals, very little is known about the natural endogenous release of hormones during learning. Therefore, we measured blood and brain (hippocampus, prefrontal cortex testosterone, estradiol, and corticosterone concentrations of intact male rats undergoing a spatial learning paradigm which is known to reinforce hippocampal plasticity. We found significant modulations of all investigated hormones over the training course. Corticosterone and testosterone were correlated manifold with behaviour, while estradiol expressed fewer correlations. In the recall session, testosterone was tightly coupled to reference memory performance, which is crucial for reinforcement of synaptic plasticity in the dentate gyrus. Intriguingly, prefrontal cortex and hippocampal levels related differentially to reference memory performance. Correlations of testosterone and corticosterone switched from unspecific activity to specific cognitive functions over training. Correspondingly, exogenous application of testosterone revealed different effects on synaptic and neuronal plasticity in trained versus untrained animals. While hippocampal long-term potentiation (LTP of the field excitatory postsynaptic potential (fEPSP was prolonged in untrained rats, both the fEPSP- and the population spike amplitude-LTP was impaired in trained rats. Behavioural performance was unaffected, but correlations of hippocampal field potentials with behaviour were decoupled in treated rats. The data provide important evidence that besides adrenal, also gonadal steroids play a mechanistic role in linking synaptic plasticity to cognitive performance.

  19. Stochastic synaptic plasticity with memristor crossbar arrays

    KAUST Repository

    Naous, Rawan

    2016-11-01

    Memristive devices have been shown to exhibit slow and stochastic resistive switching behavior under low-voltage, low-current operating conditions. Here we explore such mechanisms to emulate stochastic plasticity in memristor crossbar synapse arrays. Interfaced with integrate-and-fire spiking neurons, the memristive synapse arrays are capable of implementing stochastic forms of spike-timing dependent plasticity which parallel mean-rate models of stochastic learning with binary synapses. We present theory and experiments with spike-based stochastic learning in memristor crossbar arrays, including simplified modeling as well as detailed physical simulation of memristor stochastic resistive switching characteristics due to voltage and current induced filament formation and collapse. © 2016 IEEE.

  20. Functional consequences of pre- and postsynaptic expression of synaptic plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mizusaki, Beatriz E. P.

    2017-01-01

    Growing experimental evidence shows that both homeostatic and Hebbian synaptic plasticity can be expressed presynaptically as well as postsynaptically. In this review, we start by discussing this evidence and methods used to determine expression loci. Next, we discuss the functional consequences of this diversity in pre- and postsynaptic expression of both homeostatic and Hebbian synaptic plasticity. In particular, we explore the functional consequences of a biologically tuned model of pre- and postsynaptically expressed spike-timing-dependent plasticity complemented with postsynaptic homeostatic control. The pre- and postsynaptic expression in this model predicts (i) more reliable receptive fields and sensory perception, (ii) rapid recovery of forgotten information (memory savings), and (iii) reduced response latencies, compared with a model with postsynaptic expression only. Finally, we discuss open questions that will require a considerable research effort to better elucidate how the specific locus of expression of homeostatic and Hebbian plasticity alters synaptic and network computations. This article is part of the themed issue ‘Integrating Hebbian and homeostatic plasticity’. PMID:28093547

  1. Transcriptional and post-translational regulation of Arc in synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carmichael, Ruth E; Henley, Jeremy M

    2017-09-07

    One of the most interesting features of Arc-dependent synaptic plasticity is how multiple types of synaptic activity can converge to alter Arc transcription and then diverge to induce different plasticity outcomes, ranging from AMPA receptor internalisation that promotes long-term depression (LTD), to actin stabilisation that promotes long-term potentiation (LTP). This diversity suggests that there must be numerous levels of control to ensure the temporal profile, abundance, localisation and function of Arc are appropriately regulated to effect learning and memory in the correct contexts. The activity-dependent transcription and post-translational modification of Arc are crucial regulators of synaptic plasticity, fine-tuning the function of this key protein depending on the specific situation. The extensive cross-talk between signalling pathways and the numerous routes of Arc regulation provide a complex interplay of processes in which Arc-mediated plasticity can be broadly induced, but specifically tailored to synaptic activity. Here we provide an overview what is currently known about these processes and potential future directions. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Suppression of synaptic plasticity by fullerenol in rat hippocampus in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xin-Xing; Zha, Ying-Ying; Yang, Bo; Chen, Lin; Wang, Ming

    Fullerenol, a water-soluble fullerene derivative, has attracted much attention due to its bioactive properties, including the antioxidative properties and free radical scavenging ability. Due to its superior nature, fullerenol represents a promising diagnostic, therapeutic, and protective agent. Therefore, elucidation of the possible side effects of fullerenol is important in determining its potential role. In the present study, we investigated the acute effects of 5 μM fullerenol on synaptic plasticity in hippocampal brain slices of rats. Incubation with fullerenol for 20 minutes significantly decreased the peak of paired-pulse facilitation and long-term potentiation, indicating that fullerenol suppresses the short- and long-term synaptic plasticity of region I of hippocampus. We found that fullerenol depressed the activity and the expression of nitric oxide (NO) synthase in hippocampus. In view of the important role of NO in synaptic plasticity, the inhibition of fullerenol on NO synthase may contribute to the suppression of synaptic plasticity. These findings may facilitate the evaluation of the side effects of fullerenol.

  3. Role of the adhesion molecule F3/Contactin in synaptic plasticity and memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gulisano, Walter; Bizzoca, Antonella; Gennarini, Gianfranco; Palmeri, Agostino; Puzzo, Daniela

    2017-06-01

    Cell adhesion molecules (CAMs) have a pivotal role in building and maintaining synaptic structures during brain development participating in axonal elongation and pathfinding, glial guidance of neuronal migration, as well as myelination. CAMs expression persists in the adult brain particularly in structures undergoing postnatal neurogenesis and involved in synaptic plasticity and memory as the hippocampus. Among the neural CAMs, we have recently focused on F3/Contactin, a glycosylphosphatidyl inositol-anchored glycoprotein belonging to the immunoglobulin superfamily, involved in neuronal development, synaptic maintenance and organization of neuronal networks. Here, we discuss our recent data suggesting that F3/Contactin exerts a role in hippocampal synaptic plasticity and memory in adult and aged mice. In particular, we have studied long-term potentiation (LTP), spatial and object recognition memory, and phosphorylation of the transcription factor cAMP-Responsive-Element Binding protein (CREB) in a transgenic mouse model of F3/Contactin overexpression. We also investigated whether F3/Contactin might influence neuronal apoptosis and the production of amyloid-beta peptide (Aβ), known to be one of the main pathogenetic hallmarks of Alzheimer's disease (AD). In conclusion, a further understanding of F3/Contactin role in synaptic plasticity and memory might have interesting clinical outcomes in cognitive disorders, such as aging and AD, offering innovative therapeutic opportunities. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Dysregulation of Elongation Factor 1A Expression is Correlated with Synaptic Plasticity Impairments in Alzheimer's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beckelman, Brenna C; Day, Stephen; Zhou, Xueyan; Donohue, Maggie; Gouras, Gunnar K; Klann, Eric; Keene, C Dirk; Ma, Tao

    2016-09-06

    Synaptic dysfunction may represent an early and crucial pathophysiology in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Recent studies implicate a connection between synaptic plasticity deficits and compromised capacity of de novo protein synthesis in AD. The mRNA translational factor eukaryotic elongation factor 1A (eEF1A) is critically involved in several forms of long-lasting synaptic plasticity. By examining postmortem human brain samples, a transgenic mouse model, and application of synthetic human Aβ42 on mouse hippocampal slices, we demonstrated that eEF1A protein levels were significantly decreased in AD, particularly in the hippocampus. In contrast, brain levels of eukaryotic elongation factor 2 were unaltered in AD. Further, upregulation of eEF1A expression by the adenylyl cyclase activator forskolin, which induces long-lasting synaptic plasticity, was blunted in hippocampal slices derived from Tg2576 AD model mice. Finally, Aβ-induced hippocampal long-term potentiation defects were alleviated by upregulation of eEF1A signaling via brain-specific knockdown of the gene encoding tuberous sclerosis 2. In summary, our findings suggest a strong correlation between the dysregulation of eEF1A synthesis and AD-associated synaptic failure. These findings provide insights into the understanding of molecular mechanisms underlying AD etiology and may aid in identification of novel biomarkers and therapeutic targets.

  5. Circuit and Synaptic Plasticity Mechanisms of Drug Relapse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dong, Yan; Taylor, Jane R; Wolf, Marina E; Shaham, Yavin

    2017-11-08

    High rates of relapse to drug use during abstinence is a defining feature of human drug addiction. This clinical scenario has been studied at the preclinical level using different animal models in which relapse to drug seeking is assessed after cessation of operant drug self-administration in rodents and monkeys. In our Society for Neuroscience (SFN) session entitled "Circuit and Synaptic Plasticity Mechanisms of Drug Relapse," we will discuss new developments of our understanding of circuits and synaptic plasticity mechanisms of drug relapse from studies combining established and novel animal models with state-of-the-art cellular, electrophysiology, anatomical, chemogenetic, and optogenetic methods. We will also discuss the translational implications of these new developments. In the mini-review that introduces our SFN session, we summarize results from our laboratories on behavioral, cellular, and circuit mechanisms of drug relapse within the context of our session. Copyright © 2017 the authors 0270-6474/17/3710867-10$15.00/0.

  6. Does autophagy work in synaptic plasticity and memory?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shehata, Mohammad; Inokuchi, Kaoru

    2014-01-01

    Many studies have reported the roles played by regulated proteolysis in neural plasticity and memory. Within this context, most of the research focused on the ubiquitin-proteasome system and the endosome-lysosome system while giving lesser consideration to another major protein degradation system, namely, autophagy. Although autophagy intersects with many of the pathways known to underlie synaptic plasticity and memory, only few reports related autophagy to synaptic remodeling. These pathways include PI3K-mTOR pathway and endosome-dependent proteolysis. In this review, we will discuss several lines of evidence supporting a physiological role of autophagy in memory processes, and the possible mechanistic scenarios for how autophagy could fulfill this function.

  7. Radix Puerariae modulates glutamatergic synaptic architecture and potentiates functional synaptic plasticity in primary hippocampal neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhuiyan, Mohammad Maqueshudul Haque; Haque, Md Nazmul; Mohibbullah, Md; Kim, Yung Kyu; Moon, Il Soo

    2017-09-14

    Neurologic disorders are frequently characterized by synaptic pathology, including abnormal density and morphology of dendritic spines, synapse loss, and aberrant synaptic signaling and plasticity. Therefore, to promote and/or protect synapses by the use of natural molecules capable of modulating neurodevelopmental events, such as, spinogenesis and synaptic plasticity, could offer a preventive and curative strategy for nervous disorders associated with synaptic pathology. Radix Puerariae, the root of Pueraria monatana var. lobata (Willd.) Sanjappa&Pradeep, is a Chinese ethnomedicine, traditionally used for the treatment of memory-related nervous disorders including Alzheimer's disease. In the previous study, we showed that the ethanolic extracts of Radix Puerariae (RPE) and its prime constituent, puerarin induced neuritogenesis and synapse formation in cultured hippocampal neurons, and thus could improve memory functions. In the present study, we specifically investigated the abilities of RPE and puerarin to improve memory-related brain disorders through modulating synaptic maturation and functional potentiation. Rat embryonic (E19) brain neurons were cultured in the absence or presence of RPE or puerarin. At predetermined times, cells were live-stained with DiO or fixed and immunostained to visualize neuronal morphologies, or lysed for protein harvesting. Morphometric analyses of dendritic spines and synaptogenesis were performed using Image J software. Functional pre- and postsynaptic plasticity was measured by FM1-43 staining and whole-cell patch clamping, respectively. RPE or puerarin-mediated changes in actin-related protein 2 were assessed by Western blotting. Neuronal survivals were measured using propidium iodide exclusion assay. RPE and puerarin both: (1) promoted a significant increase in the numbers, and maturation, of dendritic spines; (2) modulated the formation of glutamatergic synapses; (3) potentiated synaptic transmission by increasing the sizes of

  8. Sensory Deprivation Triggers Synaptic and Intrinsic Plasticity in the Hippocampus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milshtein-Parush, Hila; Frere, Samuel; Regev, Limor; Lahav, Coren; Benbenishty, Amit; Ben-Eliyahu, Shamgar; Goshen, Inbal; Slutsky, Inna

    2017-06-01

    Hippocampus, a temporal lobe structure involved in learning and memory, receives information from all sensory modalities. Despite extensive research on the role of sensory experience in cortical map plasticity, little is known about whether and how sensory experience regulates functioning of the hippocampal circuits. Here, we show that 9 ± 2 days of whisker deprivation during early mouse development depresses activity of CA3 pyramidal neurons by several principal mechanisms: decrease in release probability, increase in the fraction of silent synapses, and reduction in intrinsic excitability. As a result of deprivation-induced presynaptic inhibition, CA3-CA1 synaptic facilitation was augmented at high frequencies, shifting filtering properties of synapses. The changes in the AMPA-mediated synaptic transmission were accompanied by an increase in NR2B-containing NMDA receptors and a reduction in the AMPA/NMDA ratio. The observed reconfiguration of the CA3-CA1 connections may represent a homeostatic adaptation to augmentation in synaptic activity during the initial deprivation phase. In adult mice, tactile disuse diminished intrinsic excitability without altering synaptic facilitation. We suggest that sensory experience regulates computations performed by the hippocampus by tuning its synaptic and intrinsic characteristics. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press.

  9. Autophagy mediates the degradation of synaptic vesicles: A potential mechanism of synaptic plasticity injury induced by microwave exposure in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hao, Yanhui; Li, Wenchao; Wang, Hui; Zhang, Jing; Yu, Chao; Tan, Shengzhi; Wang, Haoyu; Xu, Xinping; Dong, Ji; Yao, Binwei; Zhou, Hongmei; Zhao, Li; Peng, Ruiyun

    2018-02-03

    To explore how autophagy changes and whether autophagy is involved in the pathophysiological process of synaptic plasticity injury caused by microwave radiation, we established a 30 mW/cm 2 microwave-exposure in vivo model, which caused reversible injuries in rat neurons. Microwave radiation induced cognitive impairment in rats and synaptic plasticity injury in rat hippocampal neurons. Autophagy in rat hippocampal neurons was activated following microwave exposure. Additionally, we observed that synaptic vesicles were encapsulated by autophagosomes, a phenomenon more evident in the microwave-exposed group. Colocation of autophagosomes and synaptic vesicles in rat hippocampal neurons increased following microwave exposure. microwave exposure led to the activation of autophagy in rat hippocampal neurons, and excessive activation of autophagy might damage synaptic plasticity by mediating synaptic vesicle degradation. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Dopamine and norepinephrine receptors participate in methylphenidate enhancement of in vivo hippocampal synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jenson, Daniel; Yang, Kechun; Acevedo-Rodriguez, Alexandra; Levine, Amber; Broussard, John I; Tang, Jianrong; Dani, John A

    2015-03-01

    Attention-deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD) is the most commonly studied and diagnosed psychiatric disorder in children. Methylphenidate (MPH, e.g., Ritalin) has been used to treat ADHD for over 50 years. It is the most commonly prescribed treatment for ADHD, and in the past decade it was the drug most commonly prescribed to teenagers. In addition, MPH has become one of the most widely abused drugs on college campuses. In this study, we examined the effects of MPH on hippocampal synaptic plasticity, which serves as a measurable quantification of memory mechanisms. Field potentials were recorded with permanently implanted electrodes in freely-moving mice to quantify MPH modulation of perforant path synaptic transmission onto granule cells of the dentate gyrus. Our hypothesis was that MPH affects hippocampal synaptic plasticity underlying learning because MPH boosts catecholamine signaling by blocking the dopamine and norepinephrine transporters (DAT and NET respectively). In vitro hippocampal slice experiments indicated MPH enhances perforant path plasticity, and this MPH enhancement arose from action via D1-type dopamine receptors and β-type adrenergic receptors. Similarly, MPH boosted in vivo initiation of long-term potentiation (LTP). While there was an effect via both dopamine and adrenergic receptors in vivo, LTP induction was more dependent on the MPH-induced action via D1-type dopamine receptors. Under biologically reasonable experimental conditions, MPH enhances hippocampal synaptic plasticity via catecholamine receptors. Copyright © 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  11. Enriched environment ameliorates depression-induced cognitive deficits and restores abnormal hippocampal synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahati, K; Bhagya, V; Christofer, T; Sneha, A; Shankaranarayana Rao, B S

    2016-10-01

    Severe depression compromises structural and functional integrity of the brain and results in impaired learning and memory, maladaptive synaptic plasticity as well as degenerative changes in the hippocampus and amygdala. The precise mechanisms underlying cognitive dysfunctions in depression remain largely unknown. On the other hand, enriched environment (EE) offers beneficial effects on cognitive functions, synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus. However, the effect of EE on endogenous depression associated cognitive dysfunction has not been explored. Accordingly, we have attempted to address this issue by investigating behavioural, structural and synaptic plasticity mechanisms in an animal model of endogenous depression after exposure to enriched environment. Our results demonstrate that depression is associated with impaired spatial learning and enhanced anxiety-like behaviour which is correlated with hypotrophy of the dentate gyrus and amygdalar hypertrophy. We also observed a gross reduction in the hippocampal long-term potentiation (LTP). We report a complete behavioural recovery with reduced indices of anhedonia and behavioural despair, reduced anxiety-like behaviour and improved spatial learning along with a complete restoration of dentate gyrus and amygdalar volumes in depressive rats subjected to EE. Enrichment also facilitated CA3-Schaffer collateral LTP. Our study convincingly proves that depression-induces learning deficits and impairs hippocampal synaptic plasticity. It also highlights the role of environmental stimuli in restoring depression-induced cognitive deficits which might prove vital in outlining more effective strategies to treat major depressive disorders. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. HDAC2 expression in parvalbumin interneurons regulates synaptic plasticity in the mouse visual cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexi Nott

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available An experience-dependent postnatal increase in GABAergic inhibition in the visual cortex is important for the closure of a critical period of enhanced synaptic plasticity. Although maturation of the subclass of parvalbumin (Pv–expressing GABAergic interneurons is known to contribute to critical period closure, the role of epigenetics on cortical inhibition and synaptic plasticity has not been explored. The transcription regulator, histone deacetylase 2 (HDAC2, has been shown to modulate synaptic plasticity and learning processes in hippocampal excitatory neurons. We found that genetic deletion of HDAC2 specifically from Pv interneurons reduces inhibitory input in the visual cortex of adult mice and coincides with enhanced long-term depression that is more typical of young mice. These findings show that HDAC2 loss in Pv interneurons leads to a delayed closure of the critical period in the visual cortex and supports the hypothesis that HDAC2 is a key negative regulator of synaptic plasticity in the adult brain.

  13. HDAC2 expression in parvalbumin interneurons regulates synaptic plasticity in the mouse visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nott, Alexi; Cho, Sukhee; Seo, Jinsoo; Tsai, Li-Huei

    2015-01-01

    An experience-dependent postnatal increase in GABAergic inhibition in the visual cortex is important for the closure of a critical period of enhanced synaptic plasticity. Although maturation of the subclass of Parvalbumin (Pv)-expressing GABAergic interneurons is known to contribute to critical period closure, the role of epigenetics on cortical inhibition and synaptic plasticity has not been explored. The transcription regulator, histone deacetylase 2 (HDAC2), has been shown to modulate synaptic plasticity and learning processes in hippocampal excitatory neurons. We found that genetic deletion of HDAC2 specifically from Pv-interneurons reduces inhibitory input in the visual cortex of adult mice, and coincides with enhanced long-term depression (LTD) that is more typical of young mice. These findings show that HDAC2 loss in Pv-interneurons leads to a delayed closure of the critical period in the visual cortex and supports the hypothesis that HDAC2 is a key negative regulator of synaptic plasticity in the adult brain.

  14. Reelin supplementation recovers synaptic plasticity and cognitive deficits in a mouse model for Angelman syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hethorn, Whitney R; Ciarlone, Stephanie L; Filonova, Irina; Rogers, Justin T; Aguirre, Daniela; Ramirez, Raquel A; Grieco, Joseph C; Peters, Melinda M; Gulick, Danielle; Anderson, Anne E; L Banko, Jessica; Lussier, April L; Weeber, Edwin J

    2015-05-01

    The Reelin signaling pathway is implicated in processes controlling synaptic plasticity and hippocampus-dependent learning and memory. A single direct in vivo application of Reelin enhances long-term potentiation, increases dendritic spine density and improves associative and spatial learning and memory. Angelman syndrome (AS) is a neurological disorder that presents with an overall defect in synaptic function, including decreased long-term potentiation, reduced dendritic spine density, and deficits in learning and memory, making it an attractive model in which to examine the ability of Reelin to recover synaptic function and cognitive deficits. In this study, we investigated the effects of Reelin administration on synaptic plasticity and cognitive function in a mouse model of AS and demonstrated that bilateral, intraventricular injections of Reelin recover synaptic function and corresponding hippocampus-dependent associative and spatial learning and memory. Additionally, we describe alteration of the Reelin profile in tissue from both the AS mouse and post-mortem human brain. © 2015 The Authors. European Journal of Neuroscience published by Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. Control of Homeostatic Synaptic Plasticity by AKAP-Anchored Kinase and Phosphatase Regulation of Ca2+-Permeable AMPA Receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanderson, Jennifer L; Scott, John D; Dell'Acqua, Mark L

    2018-02-13

    Neuronal information processing requires multiple forms of synaptic plasticity mediated by NMDA and AMPA-type glutamate receptors (NMDAR, AMPAR). These plasticity mechanisms include long-term potentiation (LTP) and depression (LTD), which are Hebbian, homosynaptic mechanisms locally regulating synaptic strength of specific inputs, and homeostatic synaptic scaling, which is a heterosynaptic mechanism globally regulating synaptic strength across all inputs. In many cases, LTP and homeostatic scaling regulate AMPAR subunit composition to increase synaptic strength via incorporation of Ca 2+ -permeable receptors (CP-AMPAR) containing GluA1, but lacking GluA2, subunits. Previous work by our group and others demonstrated that anchoring of the kinase PKA and the phosphatase calcineurin (CaN) to A-kinase anchoring protein (AKAP) 150 play opposing roles in regulation of GluA1 Ser845 phosphorylation and CP-AMPAR synaptic incorporation during hippocampal LTP and LTD. Here, using both male and female knock-in mice that are deficient in PKA or CaN anchoring, we show that AKAP150-anchored PKA and CaN also play novel roles in controlling CP-AMPAR synaptic incorporation during homeostatic plasticity in hippocampal neurons. We found that genetic disruption of AKAP-PKA anchoring prevented increases in Ser845 phosphorylation and CP-AMPAR synaptic recruitment during rapid homeostatic synaptic scaling-up induced by combined blockade of action potential firing and NMDAR activity. In contrast, genetic disruption of AKAP-CaN anchoring resulted in basal increases in Ser845 phosphorylation and CP-AMPAR synaptic activity that blocked subsequent scaling-up by preventing additional CP-AMPAR recruitment. Thus, the balanced, opposing phospho-regulation provided by AKAP-anchored PKA and CaN is essential for control of both Hebbian and homeostatic plasticity mechanisms that require CP-AMPARs. Significance statement: Neuronal circuit function is shaped by multiple forms of activity

  16. Emerging Link between Alzheimer’s Disease and Homeostatic Synaptic Plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sung-Soo Jang

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Alzheimer’s disease (AD is an irreversible brain disorder characterized by progressive cognitive decline and neurodegeneration of brain regions that are crucial for learning and memory. Although intracellular neurofibrillary tangles and extracellular senile plaques, composed of insoluble amyloid-β (Aβ peptides, have been the hallmarks of postmortem AD brains, memory impairment in early AD correlates better with pathological accumulation of soluble Aβ oligomers and persistent weakening of excitatory synaptic strength, which is demonstrated by inhibition of long-term potentiation, enhancement of long-term depression, and loss of synapses. However, current, approved interventions aiming to reduce Aβ levels have failed to retard disease progression; this has led to a pressing need to identify and target alternative pathogenic mechanisms of AD. Recently, it has been suggested that the disruption of Hebbian synaptic plasticity in AD is due to aberrant metaplasticity, which is a form of homeostatic plasticity that tunes the magnitude and direction of future synaptic plasticity based on previous neuronal or synaptic activity. This review examines emerging evidence for aberrant metaplasticity in AD. Putative mechanisms underlying aberrant metaplasticity in AD will also be discussed. We hope this review inspires future studies to test the extent to which these mechanisms contribute to the etiology of AD and offer therapeutic targets.

  17. The Roles of Protein Expression in Synaptic Plasticity and Memory Consolidation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tali eRosenberg

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available The amount and availability of proteins are regulated by their synthesis, degradation, and transport. These processes can specifically, locally, and temporally regulate a protein or a population of proteins, thus affecting numerous biological processes in health and disease states. Accordingly, malfunction in the processes of protein turnover and localization underlies different neuronal diseases. However, as early as a century ago, it was recognized that there is a specific need for normal macromolecular synthesis in a specific fragment of the learning process, memory consolidation, which takes place minutes to hours following acquisition. Memory consolidation is the process by which fragile short-term memory is converted into stable long-term memory. It is accepted today that synaptic plasticity is a cellular mechanism of learning and memory processes. Interestingly, similar molecular mechanisms subserve both memory and synaptic plasticity consolidation. In this review, we survey the current view on the connection between memory consolidation processes and proteostasis, i.e., maintaining the protein contents at the neuron and the synapse. In addition, we describe the technical obstacles and possible new methods to determine neuronal proteostasis of synaptic function and better explain the process of memory and synaptic plasticity consolidation.

  18. Hippocampal ischemia causes deficits in local field potential and synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Shaoli; Zhang, Jingyun; Sheng, Tao; Lu, Wei; Miao, Dengshun

    2015-09-01

    The long-term enhancement in glutamate receptor mediated excitatory responses has been observed in stroke model. This pathological form of plasticity, termed post-ischemic long-term potentiation (i-LTP), points to functional reorganization after stroke. Little is known, however, about whether and how this i-LTP would affect subsequent induction of synaptic plasticity. Here, we first directly confirmed that i-LTP was induced in the endothelin-1-induced ischemia model as in other in vitro models. We also demonstrated increased expression of NR2B, CaMKII and p-CaMKII, which are reminiscent of i-LTP. We further induced LTP of field excitatory postsynaptic potentials (fEPSPs) on CA1 hippocampal neurons in peri-infarct regions of the endothelin-1-induced mini-stroke model. We found that LTP of fEPSPs, induced by high-frequency stimulation, displayed a progressive impairment at 12 and 24 hours after ischemia. Moreover, using in vivo multi-channel recording, we found that the local field potential, which represents electrical property of cell ensembles in more restricted regions, was also dampened at these two time points. These results suggest that i-LTP elevates the induction threshold of subsequent synaptic plasticity. Our data helps to deepen the knowledge of meta-synaptic regulation of plasticity after focal ischemia.

  19. Acute and Chronic Effects of Ethanol on Learning-Related Synaptic Plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zorumski, Charles F.; Mennerick, Steven; Izumi, Yukitoshi

    2014-01-01

    Alcoholism is associated with acute and long-term cognitive dysfunction including memory impairment, resulting in substantial disability and cost to society. Thus, understanding how ethanol impairs cognition is essential for developing treatment strategies to dampen its adverse impact. Memory processing is thought to involve persistent, use-dependent changes in synaptic transmission, and ethanol alters the activity of multiple signaling molecules involved in synaptic processing, including modulation of the glutamate and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) transmitter systems that mediate most fast excitatory and inhibitory transmission in the brain. Effects on glutamate and GABA receptors contribute to ethanol-induced changes in long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD), forms of synaptic plasticity thought to underlie memory acquisition. In this paper, we review the effects of ethanol on learning-related forms of synaptic plasticity with emphasis on changes observed in the hippocampus, a brain region that is critical for encoding contextual and episodic memories. We also include studies in other brain regions as they pertain to altered cognitive and mental function. Comparison of effects in the hippocampus to other brain regions is instructive for understanding the complexities of ethanol’s acute and long-term pharmacological consequences. PMID:24447472

  20. Acute and chronic effects of ethanol on learning-related synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zorumski, Charles F; Mennerick, Steven; Izumi, Yukitoshi

    2014-02-01

    Alcoholism is associated with acute and long-term cognitive dysfunction including memory impairment, resulting in substantial disability and cost to society. Thus, understanding how ethanol impairs cognition is essential for developing treatment strategies to dampen its adverse impact. Memory processing is thought to involve persistent, use-dependent changes in synaptic transmission, and ethanol alters the activity of multiple signaling molecules involved in synaptic processing, including modulation of the glutamate and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) transmitter systems that mediate most fast excitatory and inhibitory transmission in the brain. Effects on glutamate and GABA receptors contribute to ethanol-induced changes in long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD), forms of synaptic plasticity thought to underlie memory acquisition. In this paper, we review the effects of ethanol on learning-related forms of synaptic plasticity with emphasis on changes observed in the hippocampus, a brain region that is critical for encoding contextual and episodic memories. We also include studies in other brain regions as they pertain to altered cognitive and mental function. Comparison of effects in the hippocampus to other brain regions is instructive for understanding the complexities of ethanol's acute and long-term pharmacological consequences. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Fragile X Syndrome: Keys to the Molecular Genetics of Synaptic Plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lombroso, Paul J.; Ogren, Marilee P.

    2008-01-01

    Fragile X syndrome, the most common form of inherited mental retardation is discussed. The relationship between specific impairments in synaptic plasticity and Fragile X syndrome is investigated as it strengthens synaptic contacts between neurons.

  2. The transformation of synaptic to system plasticity in motor output from the sacral cord of the adult mouse.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiang, Mingchen C; Elbasiouny, Sherif M; Collins, William F; Heckman, C J

    2015-09-01

    Synaptic plasticity is fundamental in shaping the output of neural networks. The transformation of synaptic plasticity at the cellular level into plasticity at the system level involves multiple factors, including behavior of local networks of interneurons. Here we investigate the synaptic to system transformation for plasticity in motor output in an in vitro preparation of the adult mouse spinal cord. System plasticity was assessed from compound action potentials (APs) in spinal ventral roots, which were generated simultaneously by the axons of many motoneurons (MNs). Synaptic plasticity was assessed from intracellular recordings of MNs. A computer model of the MN pool was used to identify the middle steps in the transformation from synaptic to system behavior. Two input systems that converge on the same MN pool were studied: one sensory and one descending. The two synaptic input systems generated very different motor outputs, with sensory stimulation consistently evoking short-term depression (STD) whereas descending stimulation had bimodal plasticity: STD at low frequencies but short-term facilitation (STF) at high frequencies. Intracellular and pharmacological studies revealed contributions from monosynaptic excitation and stimulus time-locked inhibition but also considerable asynchronous excitation sustained from local network activity. The computer simulations showed that STD in the monosynaptic excitatory input was the primary driver of the system STD in the sensory input whereas network excitation underlies the bimodal plasticity in the descending system. These results provide insight on the roles of plasticity in the monosynaptic and polysynaptic inputs converging on the same MN pool to overall motor plasticity. Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.

  3. Synaptic scaling enables dynamically distinct short- and long-term memory formation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian Tetzlaff

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Memory storage in the brain relies on mechanisms acting on time scales from minutes, for long-term synaptic potentiation, to days, for memory consolidation. During such processes, neural circuits distinguish synapses relevant for forming a long-term storage, which are consolidated, from synapses of short-term storage, which fade. How time scale integration and synaptic differentiation is simultaneously achieved remains unclear. Here we show that synaptic scaling - a slow process usually associated with the maintenance of activity homeostasis - combined with synaptic plasticity may simultaneously achieve both, thereby providing a natural separation of short- from long-term storage. The interaction between plasticity and scaling provides also an explanation for an established paradox where memory consolidation critically depends on the exact order of learning and recall. These results indicate that scaling may be fundamental for stabilizing memories, providing a dynamic link between early and late memory formation processes.

  4. Learning to discriminate through long-term changes of dynamical synaptic transmission.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leibold, Christian; Bendels, Michael H K

    2009-12-01

    Short-term synaptic plasticity is modulated by long-term synaptic changes. There is, however, no general agreement on the computational role of this interaction. Here, we derive a learning rule for the release probability and the maximal synaptic conductance in a circuit model with combined recurrent and feedforward connections that allows learning to discriminate among natural inputs. Short-term synaptic plasticity thereby provides a nonlinear expansion of the input space of a linear classifier, whereas the random recurrent network serves to decorrelate the expanded input space. Computer simulations reveal that the twofold increase in the number of input dimensions through short-term synaptic plasticity improves the performance of a standard perceptron up to 100%. The distributions of release probabilities and maximal synaptic conductances at the capacity limit strongly depend on the balance between excitation and inhibition. The model also suggests a new computational interpretation of spikes evoked by stimuli outside the classical receptive field. These neuronal activities may reflect decorrelation of the expanded stimulus space by intracortical synaptic connections.

  5. Prior regular exercise prevents synaptic plasticity impairment in sleep deprived female rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saadati, Hakimeh; Sheibani, Vahid; Esmaeili-Mahani, Saeed; Hajali, Vahid; Mazhari, Shahrzad

    2014-09-01

    Previous studies have indicated that physical exercise plays a preventive role in synaptic plasticity deficits in the hippocampus of sleep-deprived male rats. The objective of the present study was to evaluate the effects of treadmill running on early long term potentiation (E-LTP) at the Cornu Ammonis (CA1) area of the hippocampus in sleep-deprived female rats. Intact and ovariectomiezed (OVX) female Wistar rats were used in the present study. The exercise protocol was four weeks treadmill running and the multiple platform method was applied to induce 72 h sleep deprivation (SD). We examine the effect of exercise and/or SD on synaptic plasticity using in vivo extracellular recording in the CA1 area of the hippocampus. The field excitatory post-synaptic potential (fEPSP) slope was measured before and 2h after high frequency stimulation (HFS) in the experimental groups. Field potential recording indicated that the induction and maintenance phase of E-LTP impaired in the sleep deprived animals compared to the other groups. After 72 h SD, E-LTP impairments were prevented by 4 weeks of regular treadmill exercise. In conclusion, the synaptic plasticity deficit in sleep-deprived female rats was improved by regular physical exercise. Further studies are suggested to evaluate the possible underlying mechanisms. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Dietary cholesterol concentration affects synaptic plasticity and dendrite spine morphology of rabbit hippocampal neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Desheng; Zheng, Wen

    2015-10-05

    Previous studies have shown dietary cholesterol can enhance learning but retard memory which may be partly due to increased cholesterol levels in hippocampus and reduced afterhyperpolarization (AHP) amplitude of hippocampal CA1 neurons. This study explored the dose-dependent effect of dietary cholesterol on synaptic plasticity of rabbit hippocampal CA1 neurons and spine morphology, the postsynaptic structures responsible for synaptic plasticity. Field potential recordings revealed a low concentration of dietary cholesterol increased long-term potentiation (LTP) expression while high concentrations produced a pronounced reduction in LTP expression. Dietary cholesterol facilitated basal synaptic transmission but did not influence presynaptic function. DiI staining showed dietary cholesterol induced alterations in dendrite spine morphology characterized by increased mushroom spine density and decreased thin spine density, two kinds of dendritic spines that may be linked to memory consolidation and learning acquisition. Dietary cholesterol also modulated the geometric measures of mushroom spines. Therefore, dietary cholesterol dose-dependently modulated both synaptic plasticity and dendrite spine morphologies of hippocampal CA1 neurons that could mediate learning and memory changes previously seen to result from feeding a cholesterol diet. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Spike timing-dependent plasticity as the origin of the formation of clustered synaptic efficacy engrams

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolangelo L Iannella

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Synapse location, dendritic active properties and synaptic plasticity are all known to play some role in shaping the different input streams impinging onto a neuron. It remains unclear however, how the magnitude and spatial distribution of synaptic efficacies emerge from this interplay. Here, we investigate this interplay using a biophysically detailed neuron model of a reconstructed layer 2/3 pyramidal cell and spike timing-dependent plasticity (STDP. Specifically, we focus on the issue of how the efficacy of synapses contributed by different input streams are spatially represented in dendrites after STDP learning. We construct a simple feed forward network where a detailed model neuron receives synaptic inputs independently from multiple yet equally sized groups of afferent fibres with correlated activity, mimicking the spike activity from different neuronal populations encoding, for example, different sensory modalities. Interestingly, ensuing STDP learning, we observe that for all afferent groups, STDP leads to synaptic efficacies arranged into spatially segregated clusters effectively partitioning the dendritic tree. These segregated clusters possess a characteristic global organisation in space, where they form a tessellation in which each group dominates mutually exclusive regions of the dendrite.Put simply, the dendritic imprint from different input streams left after STDP learning effectively forms what we term a dendritic efficacy mosaic. Furthermore, we show how variations of the inputs and STDP rule affect such an organization. Our model suggests that STDP may be an important mechanism for creating a clustered plasticity engram, which shapes how different input streams are spatially represented in dendrite.

  8. An objective function for Hebbian self-limiting synaptic plasticity rules

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gros, Claudius; Eckmann, Samuel; Echeveste, Rodrigo

    Objective functions, formulated in terms of information theoretical measures with respect to the input and output probability distributions, provide a useful framework for the formulation of guiding principles for information processing systems, such as neural networks. In the present work, a guiding principle for neural plasticity is formulated in terms of an objective function expressed as the Fisher information with respect to an operator that we denote as the synaptic flux. By minimization of this objective function, we obtain Hebbian self-limiting synaptic plasticity rules, avoiding unbounded weight growth. Furthermore, we show how the rules are selective to directions of maximal negative excess kurtosis, making them suitable for independent component analysis. As an application, the non-linear bars problem is studied, in which each neuron is presented with a non-linear superposition of horizontal and vertical bars. We show that, under the here presented rules, the neurons are able to find the independent components of the input.

  9. Neuronal inhibition and synaptic plasticity of basal ganglia neurons in Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milosevic, Luka; Kalia, Suneil K; Hodaie, Mojgan; Lozano, Andres M; Fasano, Alfonso; Popovic, Milos R; Hutchison, William D

    2018-01-01

    Deep brain stimulation of the subthalamic nucleus is an effective treatment for Parkinson's disease symptoms. The therapeutic benefits of deep brain stimulation are frequency-dependent, but the underlying physiological mechanisms remain unclear. To advance deep brain stimulation therapy an understanding of fundamental mechanisms is critical. The objectives of this study were to (i) compare the frequency-dependent effects on cell firing in subthalamic nucleus and substantia nigra pars reticulata; (ii) quantify frequency-dependent effects on short-term plasticity in substantia nigra pars reticulata; and (iii) investigate effects of continuous long-train high frequency stimulation (comparable to conventional deep brain stimulation) on synaptic plasticity. Two closely spaced (600 µm) microelectrodes were advanced into the subthalamic nucleus (n = 27) and substantia nigra pars reticulata (n = 14) of 22 patients undergoing deep brain stimulation surgery for Parkinson's disease. Cell firing and evoked field potentials were recorded with one microelectrode during stimulation trains from the adjacent microelectrode across a range of frequencies (1-100 Hz, 100 µA, 0.3 ms, 50-60 pulses). Subthalamic firing attenuated with ≥20 Hz (P synaptic facilitation followed by rapid depression. Paired pulse ratios calculated at the beginning of the train revealed that 20 Hz (P synaptic depression. Lastly, the average amplitude of evoked field potentials during 1 Hz pulses showed significant inhibitory synaptic potentiation after long-train high frequency stimulation (P synaptic plasticity, and frequency-dependent potentiation and depression are putative mechanisms of deep brain stimulation. Furthermore, we foresee that future closed-loop deep brain stimulation systems (with more frequent off stimulation periods) may benefit from inhibitory synaptic potentiation that occurs after high frequency stimulation. © The Author (2017). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the

  10. Synaptic plasticity-related neural oscillations on hippocampus-prefrontal cortex pathway in depression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, C; Zhang, T

    2015-04-30

    It is believed that phase synchronization facilitates neural communication and neural plasticity throughout the hippocampal-cortical network, and further supports cognition and memory. The pathway from the ventral hippocampus to the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) is thought to play a significant role in emotional memory processing. Therefore, the information transmission on the pathway was hypothesized to be disrupted in the depressive state, which could be related to its impaired synaptic plasticity. In this study, local field potentials (LFPs) from both ventral CA1 (vCA1) and mPFC were recorded in both normal and chronic unpredictable stress (CUS) model rats under urethane anesthesia. LFPs of all rats were recorded before and after the long-term potentiation (LTP) induced on the vCA1-mPFC pathway in order to figure out the correlation of oscillatory synchronization of LFPs and synaptic plasticity. Our results showed the vCA1-to-mPFC unidirectional phase coupling of the theta rhythm, rather than the power of either region, was significantly enhanced by LTP induction, with less enhancement in the CUS model rats compared to that in the normal rats. In addition, theta phase coupling was positively correlated with synaptic plasticity on vCA1-mPFC pathway. Moreover, the theta-slow gamma phase-amplitude coupling in vCA1 was long-term enhanced after high frequency stimulation. These results suggest that the impaired synaptic plasticity in vCA1-mPFC pathway could be reflected by the attenuated theta phase coupling and theta-gamma cross frequency coupling of LFPs in the depression state. Copyright © 2015 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Mitochondria and Synaptic Plasticity in the Mature and Aging Nervous System

    OpenAIRE

    Todorova, Vyara; Blokland, Arjan

    2017-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity in the adult brain is believed to represent the cellular mechanisms of learning and memory. Mitochondria are involved in the regulation of the complex processes of synaptic plasticity. This paper reviews the current knowledge on the regulatory roles of mitochondria in the function and plasticity of synapses and the implications of mitochondrial dysfunctions in synaptic transmission. First, the importance of mitochondrial distribution and motility for maintenance and streng...

  12. Intrinsic cellular and molecular properties of in vivo hippocampal synaptic plasticity are altered in the absence of key synaptic matrix molecules.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jansen, Stephan; Gottschling, Christine; Faissner, Andreas; Manahan-Vaughan, Denise

    2017-08-01

    Hippocampal synaptic plasticity comprises a key cellular mechanism for information storage. In the hippocampus, both long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) are triggered by synaptic Ca 2+ -elevations that are typically mediated by the opening of voltage-gated cation channels, such as N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors (NMDAR), in the postsynaptic density. The integrity of the post-synaptic density is ensured by the extracellular matrix (ECM). Here, we explored whether synaptic plasticity is affected in adult behaving mice that lack the ECM proteins brevican, neurocan, tenascin-C, and tenascin-R (KO). We observed that the profiles of synaptic potentiation and depression in the dentate gyrus (DG) were profoundly altered compared to plasticity profiles in wild-type littermates (WT). Specifically, synaptic depression was amplified in a frequency-dependent manner and although late-LTP (>24 hr) was expressed following strong afferent tetanization, the early component of LTP (4 hr) elicited by weaker tetanization was equivalent in WT and KO animals. Furthermore, this latter form of LTP was NMDAR-dependent in WT but not KO mice. Scrutiny of DG receptor expression revealed significantly lower levels of both the GluN2A and GluN2B subunits of the N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor, of the metabotropic glutamate receptor, mGlu5 and of the L-type calcium channel, Ca v 1.3 in KO compared to WT animals. Homer 1a and of the P/Q-type calcium channel, Ca v 1.2 were unchanged in KO mice. Taken together, findings suggest that in mice that lack multiple ECM proteins, synaptic plasticity is intact, but is fundamentally different. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  13. A light-stimulated synaptic transistor with synaptic plasticity and memory functions based on InGaZnOx-Al2O3 thin film structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, H. K.; Chen, T. P.; Liu, P.; Hu, S. G.; Liu, Y.; Zhang, Q.; Lee, P. S.

    2016-06-01

    In this work, a synaptic transistor based on the indium gallium zinc oxide (IGZO)-aluminum oxide (Al2O3) thin film structure, which uses ultraviolet (UV) light pulses as the pre-synaptic stimulus, has been demonstrated. The synaptic transistor exhibits the behavior of synaptic plasticity like the paired-pulse facilitation. In addition, it also shows the brain's memory behaviors including the transition from short-term memory to long-term memory and the Ebbinghaus forgetting curve. The synapse-like behavior and memory behaviors of the transistor are due to the trapping and detrapping processes of the holes, which are generated by the UV pulses, at the IGZO/Al2O3 interface and/or in the Al2O3 layer.

  14. Sleep deprivation during a specific 3-hour time window post-training impairs hippocampal synaptic plasticity and memory

    OpenAIRE

    Prince, Toni-Moi; Wimmer, Mathieu; Choi, Jennifer; Havekes, Robbert; Aton, Sara; Abel, Ted

    2013-01-01

    Sleep deprivation disrupts hippocampal function and plasticity. In particular, long-term memory consolidation is impaired by sleep deprivation, suggesting that a specific critical period exists following learning during which sleep is necessary. To elucidate the impact of sleep deprivation on long-term memory consolidation and synaptic plasticity, long-term memory was assessed when mice were sleep deprived following training in the hippocampus-dependent object place recognition task. We found...

  15. Neural oscillations and information flow associated with synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Tao

    2011-10-25

    As a rhythmic neural activity, neural oscillation exists all over the nervous system, in structures as diverse as the cerebral cortex, hippocampus, subcortical nuclei and sense organs. This review firstly presents some evidence that synchronous neural oscillations in theta and gamma bands reveal much about the origin and nature of cognitive processes such as learning and memory. And then it introduces the novel analyzing algorithms of neural oscillations, which is a directionality index of neural information flow (NIF) as a measure of synaptic plasticity. An example of application used such an analyzing algorithms of neural oscillations has been provided.

  16. Synaptic plasticity in health and disease: introduction and overview

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bliss, T. V. P.; Collingridge, G. L.; Morris, R. G. M.

    2014-01-01

    We summarize the reviews and research papers submitted by speakers at a discussion meeting on Synaptic Plasticity in Health and Disease held at the Royal Society, London on 2–3 December 2013, and a subsequent satellite meeting convened at the Royal Society/Kavli Centre at Chicheley Hall on 4–5 December 2013. Together, these contributions give an overview of current research and controversies in a vibrant branch of neuroscience with important implications for the understanding of many forms of learning and memory, and a wide spectrum of neurological and cognitive disorders. PMID:24298133

  17. Spred1 is required for synaptic plasticity and hippocampus-dependent learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Denayer, Ellen; Ahmed, Tariq; Brems, Hilde; Van Woerden, Geeske; Borgesius, Nils Zuiderveen; Callaerts-Vegh, Zsuzsanna; Yoshimura, Akihiko; Hartmann, Dieter; Elgersma, Ype; D'Hooge, Rudi; Legius, Eric; Balschun, Detlef

    2008-12-31

    Germline mutations in SPRED1, a negative regulator of Ras, have been described in a neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1)-like syndrome (NFLS) that included learning difficulties in some affected individuals. NFLS belongs to the group of phenotypically overlapping neuro-cardio-facial-cutaneous syndromes that are all caused by germ line mutations in genes of the Ras/mitogen-activated protein kinase extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) pathway and that present with some degree of learning difficulties or mental retardation. We investigated hippocampus-dependent learning and memory as well as synaptic plasticity in Spred1(-/-) mice, an animal model of this newly discovered human syndrome. Spred1(-/-) mice show decreased learning and memory performance in the Morris water maze and visual-discrimination T-maze, but normal basic neuromotor and sensory abilities. Electrophysiological recordings on brain slices from these animals identified defects in short- and long-term synaptic hippocampal plasticity, including a disequilibrium between long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression in CA1 region. Biochemical analysis, 4 h after LTP induction, demonstrated increased ERK-phosphorylation in Spred1(-/-) slices compared with those of wild-type littermates. This indicates that deficits in hippocampus-dependent learning and synaptic plasticity induced by SPRED1 deficiency are related to hyperactivation of the Ras/ERK pathway.

  18. Structural synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus induced by spatial experience and its implications in information processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carasatorre, M; Ramírez-Amaya, V; Díaz Cintra, S

    2016-10-01

    Long-lasting memory formation requires that groups of neurons processing new information develop the ability to reproduce the patterns of neural activity acquired by experience. Changes in synaptic efficiency let neurons organise to form ensembles that repeat certain activity patterns again and again. Among other changes in synaptic plasticity, structural modifications tend to be long-lasting which suggests that they underlie long-term memory. There is a large body of evidence supporting that experience promotes changes in the synaptic structure, particularly in the hippocampus. Structural changes to the hippocampus may be functionally implicated in stabilising acquired memories and encoding new information. Copyright © 2012 Sociedad Española de Neurología. Publicado por Elsevier España, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

  19. Enhancement of signal sensitivity in a heterogeneous neural network refined from synaptic plasticity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Li Xiumin; Small, Michael, E-mail: ensmall@polyu.edu.h, E-mail: 07901216r@eie.polyu.edu.h [Department of Electronic and Information Engineering, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Kowloon (Hong Kong)

    2010-08-15

    Long-term synaptic plasticity induced by neural activity is of great importance in informing the formation of neural connectivity and the development of the nervous system. It is reasonable to consider self-organized neural networks instead of prior imposition of a specific topology. In this paper, we propose a novel network evolved from two stages of the learning process, which are respectively guided by two experimentally observed synaptic plasticity rules, i.e. the spike-timing-dependent plasticity (STDP) mechanism and the burst-timing-dependent plasticity (BTDP) mechanism. Due to the existence of heterogeneity in neurons that exhibit different degrees of excitability, a two-level hierarchical structure is obtained after the synaptic refinement. This self-organized network shows higher sensitivity to afferent current injection compared with alternative archetypal networks with different neural connectivity. Statistical analysis also demonstrates that it has the small-world properties of small shortest path length and high clustering coefficients. Thus the selectively refined connectivity enhances the ability of neuronal communications and improves the efficiency of signal transmission in the network.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gilles Erwann Martin

    2015-07-01

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

  1. Curcumin improves synaptic plasticity impairment induced by HIV-1gp120 V3 loop

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ling-ling Shen

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Curcumin has been shown to significantly improve spatial memory impairment induced by HIV-1 gp120 V3 in rats, but the electrophysiological mechanism remains unknown. Using extracellular microelectrode recording techniques, this study confirmed that the gp120 V3 loop could suppress long-term potentiation in the rat hippocampal CA1 region and synaptic plasticity, and that curcumin could antagonize these inhibitory effects. Using a Fura-2/AM calcium ion probe, we found that curcumin resisted the effects of the gp120 V3 loop on hippocampal synaptosomes and decreased Ca 2+ concentration in synaptosomes. This effect of curcumin was identical to nimodipine, suggesting that curcumin improved the inhibitory effects of gp120 on synaptic plasticity, ameliorated damage caused to the central nervous system, and might be a potential neuroprotective drug.

  2. Kalirin-7 is necessary for normal NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic plasticity

    KAUST Repository

    Lemtiri-Chlieh, Fouad

    2011-12-19

    Background: Dendritic spines represent the postsynaptic component of the vast majority of excitatory synapses present in the mammalian forebrain. The ability of spines to rapidly alter their shape, size, number and receptor content in response to stimulation is considered to be of paramount importance during the development of synaptic plasticity. Indeed, long-term potentiation (LTP), widely believed to be a cellular correlate of learning and memory, has been repeatedly shown to induce both spine enlargement and the formation of new dendritic spines. In our studies, we focus on Kalirin-7 (Kal7), a Rho GDP/GTP exchange factor (Rho-GEF) localized to the postsynaptic density that plays a crucial role in the development and maintenance of dendritic spines both in vitro and in vivo. Previous studies have shown that mice lacking Kal7 (Kal7 KO) have decreased dendritic spine density in the hippocampus as well as focal hippocampal-dependent learning impairments.Results: We have performed a detailed electrophysiological characterization of the role of Kal7 in hippocampal synaptic plasticity. We show that loss of Kal7 results in impaired NMDA receptor-dependent LTP and long-term depression, whereas a NMDA receptor-independent form of LTP is shown to be normal in the absence of Kal7.Conclusions: These results indicate that Kal7 is an essential and selective modulator of NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus. 2011 Lemtiri-Chlieh et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

  3. From altered synaptic plasticity to atypical learning: A computational model of Down syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tovar, Ángel Eugenio; Westermann, Gert; Torres, Alvaro

    2017-11-02

    Learning and memory rely on the adaptation of synaptic connections. Research on the neurophysiology of Down syndrome has characterized an atypical pattern of synaptic plasticity with limited long-term potentiation (LTP) and increased long-term depression (LTD). Here we present a neurocomputational model that instantiates this LTP/LTD imbalance to explore its impact on tasks of associative learning. In Study 1, we ran a series of computational simulations to analyze the learning of simple and overlapping stimulus associations in a model of Down syndrome compared with a model of typical development. Learning in the Down syndrome model was slower and more susceptible to interference effects. We found that interference effects could be overcome with dedicated stimulation schedules. In Study 2, we ran a second set of simulations and an empirical study with participants with Down syndrome and typically developing children to test the predictions of our model. The model adequately predicted the performance of the human participants in a serial reaction time task, an implicit learning task that relies on associative learning mechanisms. Critically, typical and atypical behavior was explained by the interactions between neural plasticity constraints and the stimulation schedule. Our model provides a mechanistic account of learning impairments based on these interactions, and a causal link between atypical synaptic plasticity and associative learning. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Kalirin-7 is necessary for normal NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lemtiri-Chlieh Fouad

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Dendritic spines represent the postsynaptic component of the vast majority of excitatory synapses present in the mammalian forebrain. The ability of spines to rapidly alter their shape, size, number and receptor content in response to stimulation is considered to be of paramount importance during the development of synaptic plasticity. Indeed, long-term potentiation (LTP, widely believed to be a cellular correlate of learning and memory, has been repeatedly shown to induce both spine enlargement and the formation of new dendritic spines. In our studies, we focus on Kalirin-7 (Kal7, a Rho GDP/GTP exchange factor (Rho-GEF localized to the postsynaptic density that plays a crucial role in the development and maintenance of dendritic spines both in vitro and in vivo. Previous studies have shown that mice lacking Kal7 (Kal7KO have decreased dendritic spine density in the hippocampus as well as focal hippocampal-dependent learning impairments. Results We have performed a detailed electrophysiological characterization of the role of Kal7 in hippocampal synaptic plasticity. We show that loss of Kal7 results in impaired NMDA receptor-dependent LTP and long-term depression, whereas a NMDA receptor-independent form of LTP is shown to be normal in the absence of Kal7. Conclusions These results indicate that Kal7 is an essential and selective modulator of NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus.

  5. Emerging Links between Homeostatic Synaptic Plasticity and Neurological Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dion eDickman

    2013-11-01

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

  6. Ras and Rap signaling in synaptic plasticity and mental disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stornetta, Ruth L; Zhu, J Julius

    2011-02-01

    The Ras family GTPases (Ras, Rap1, and Rap2) and their downstream mitogen-activated protein kinases (ERK, JNK, and p38MAPK) and PI3K signaling cascades control various physiological processes. In neuronal cells, recent studies have shown that these parallel cascades signal distinct forms of AMPA-sensitive glutamate receptor trafficking during experience-dependent synaptic plasticity and adaptive behavior. Interestingly, both hypo- and hyperactivation of Ras/ Rap signaling impair the capacity of synaptic plasticity, underscoring the importance of a "happy-medium" dynamic regulation of the signaling. Moreover, accumulating reports have linked various genetic defects that either up- or down-regulate Ras/Rap signaling with several mental disorders associated with learning disability (e.g., Alzheimer's disease, Angelman syndrome, autism, cardio-facio-cutaneous syndrome, Coffin-Lowry syndrome, Costello syndrome, Cowden and Bannayan-Riley-Ruvalcaba syndromes, fragile X syndrome, neurofibromatosis type 1, Noonan syndrome, schizophrenia, tuberous sclerosis, and X-linked mental retardation), highlighting the necessity of happy-medium dynamic regulation of Ras/Rap signaling in learning behavior. Thus, the recent advances in understanding of neuronal Ras/Rap signaling provide a useful guide for developing novel treatments for mental diseases.

  7. Spike-driven synaptic plasticity: theory, simulation, VLSI implementation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fusi, S; Annunziato, M; Badoni, D; Salamon, A; Amit, D J

    2000-10-01

    We present a model for spike-driven dynamics of a plastic synapse, suited for aVLSI implementation. The synaptic device behaves as a capacitor on short timescales and preserves the memory of two stable states (efficacies) on long timescales. The transitions (LTP/LTD) are stochastic because both the number and the distribution of neural spikes in any finite (stimulation) interval fluctuate, even at fixed pre- and postsynaptic spike rates. The dynamics of the single synapse is studied analytically by extending the solution to a classic problem in queuing theory (Takacs process). The model of the synapse is implemented in aVLSI and consists of only 18 transistors. It is also directly simulated. The simulations indicate that LTP/LTD probabilities versus rates are robust to fluctuations of the electronic parameters in a wide range of rates. The solutions for these probabilities are in very good agreement with both the simulations and measurements. Moreover, the probabilities are readily manipulable by variations of the chip's parameters, even in ranges where they are very small. The tests of the electronic device cover the range from spontaneous activity (3-4 Hz) to stimulus-driven rates (50 Hz). Low transition probabilities can be maintained in all ranges, even though the intrinsic time constants of the device are short (approximately 100 ms). Synaptic transitions are triggered by elevated presynaptic rates: for low presynaptic rates, there are essentially no transitions. The synaptic device can preserve its memory for years in the absence of stimulation. Stochasticity of learning is a result of the variability of interspike intervals; noise is a feature of the distributed dynamics of the network. The fact that the synapse is binary on long timescales solves the stability problem of synaptic efficacies in the absence of stimulation. Yet stochastic learning theory ensures that it does not affect the collective behavior of the network, if the transition probabilities are

  8. Presynaptic active zone density during development and synaptic plasticity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gwenaëlle L Clarke

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Neural circuits transmit information through synapses, and the efficiency of synaptic transmission is closely related to the density of presynaptic active zones, where synaptic vesicles are released. The goal of this review is to highlight recent insights into the molecular mechanisms that control the number of active zones per presynaptic terminal (active zone density during developmental and stimulus-dependent changes in synaptic efficacy. At the neuromuscular junctions (NMJs, the active zone density is preserved across species, remains constant during development, and is the same between synapses with different activities. However, the NMJ active zones are not always stable, as exemplified by the change in active zone density during acute experimental manipulation or as a result of aging. Therefore, a mechanism must exist to maintain its density. In the central nervous system (CNS, active zones have restricted maximal size, exist in multiple numbers in larger presynaptic terminals, and maintain a constant density during development. These findings suggest that active zone density in the CNS is also controlled. However, in contrast to the NMJ, active zone density in the CNS can also be increased, as observed in hippocampal synapses in response to synaptic plasticity. Although the numbers of known active zone proteins and protein interactions have increased, less is known about the mechanism that controls the number or spacing of active zones. The following molecules are known to control active zone density and will be discussed herein: extracellular matrix laminins and voltage-dependent calcium channels, amyloid precursor proteins, the small GTPase Rab3, an endocytosis mechanism including synaptojanin, cytoskeleton protein spectrins and β-adducin, and a presynaptic web including spectrins. The molecular mechanisms that organize the active zone density are just beginning to be elucidated.

  9. Lithium rescues synaptic plasticity and memory in Down syndrome mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Contestabile, Andrea; Greco, Barbara; Ghezzi, Diego; Tucci, Valter; Benfenati, Fabio; Gasparini, Laura

    2012-01-01

    Down syndrome (DS) patients exhibit abnormalities of hippocampal-dependent explicit memory, a feature that is replicated in relevant mouse models of the disease. Adult hippocampal neurogenesis, which is impaired in DS and other neuropsychiatric diseases, plays a key role in hippocampal circuit plasticity and has been implicated in learning and memory. However, it remains unknown whether increasing adult neurogenesis improves hippocampal plasticity and behavioral performance in the multifactorial context of DS. We report that, in the Ts65Dn mouse model of DS, chronic administration of lithium, a clinically used mood stabilizer, promoted the proliferation of neuronal precursor cells through the pharmacological activation of the Wnt/β-catenin pathway and restored adult neurogenesis in the hippocampal dentate gyrus (DG) to physiological levels. The restoration of adult neurogenesis completely rescued the synaptic plasticity of newborn neurons in the DG and led to the full recovery of behavioral performance in fear conditioning, object location, and novel object recognition tests. These findings indicate that reestablishing a functional population of hippocampal newborn neurons in adult DS mice rescues hippocampal plasticity and memory and implicate adult neurogenesis as a promising therapeutic target to alleviate cognitive deficits in DS patients. PMID:23202733

  10. Interactions between behaviorally relevant rhythms and synaptic plasticity alter coding in the piriform cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oswald, Anne-Marie M; Urban, Nathaniel N

    2012-05-02

    Understanding how neural and behavioral timescales interact to influence cortical activity and stimulus coding is an important issue in sensory neuroscience. In air-breathing animals, voluntary changes in respiratory frequency alter the temporal patterning olfactory input. In the olfactory bulb, these behavioral timescales are reflected in the temporal properties of mitral/tufted (M/T) cell spike trains. As the odor information contained in these spike trains is relayed from the bulb to the cortex, interactions between presynaptic spike timing and short-term synaptic plasticity dictate how stimulus features are represented in cortical spike trains. Here, we demonstrate how the timescales associated with respiratory frequency, spike timing, and short-term synaptic plasticity interact to shape cortical responses. Specifically, we quantified the timescales of short-term synaptic facilitation and depression at excitatory synapses between bulbar M/T cells and cortical neurons in slices of mouse olfactory cortex. We then used these results to generate simulated M/T population synaptic currents that were injected into real cortical neurons. M/T population inputs were modulated at frequencies consistent with passive respiration or active sniffing. We show how the differential recruitment of short-term plasticity at breathing versus sniffing frequencies alters cortical spike responses. For inputs at sniffing frequencies, cortical neurons linearly encoded increases in presynaptic firing rates with increased phase-locked, firing rates. In contrast, at passive breathing frequencies, cortical responses saturated with changes in presynaptic rate. Our results suggest that changes in respiratory behavior can gate the transfer of stimulus information between the olfactory bulb and cortex.

  11. Coordinated Regulation of Synaptic Plasticity at Striatopallidal and Striatonigral Neurons Orchestrates Motor Control

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Massimo Trusel

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available The basal ganglia play a critical role in shaping motor behavior. For this function, the activity of medium spiny neurons (MSNs of the striatonigral and striatopallidal pathways must be integrated. It remains unclear whether the activity of the two pathways is primarily coordinated by synaptic plasticity mechanisms. Using a model of Parkinson’s disease, we determined the circuit and behavioral effects of concurrently regulating cell-type-specific forms of corticostriatal long-term synaptic depression (LTD by inhibiting small-conductance Ca2+-activated K+ channels (SKs of the dorsolateral striatum. At striatopallidal synapses, SK channel inhibition rescued the disease-linked deficits in endocannabinoid (eCB-dependent LTD. At striatonigral cells, inhibition of these channels counteracted a form of adenosine-mediated LTD by activating the ERK cascade. Interfering with eCB-, adenosine-, and ERK signaling in vivo alleviated motor abnormalities, which supports that synaptic modulation of striatal pathways affects behavior. Thus, our results establish a central role of coordinated synaptic plasticity at MSN subpopulations in motor control.

  12. ADF/cofilin-mediated actin dynamics regulate AMPA receptor trafficking during synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gu, Jiaping; Lee, Chi Wai; Fan, Yanjie; Komlos, Daniel; Tang, Xin; Sun, Chicheng; Yu, Kuai; Hartzell, H Criss; Chen, Gong; Bamburg, James R; Zheng, James Q

    2010-10-01

    Dendritic spines undergo actin-based growth and shrinkage during synaptic plasticity, in which the actin depolymerizing factor (ADF)/cofilin family of actin-associated proteins are important. Elevated ADF/cofilin activities often lead to reduced spine size and immature spine morphology but can also enhance synaptic potentiation in some cases. Thus, ADF/cofilin may have distinct effects on postsynaptic structure and function. We found that ADF/cofilin-mediated actin dynamics regulated AMPA receptor (AMPAR) trafficking during synaptic potentiation, which was distinct from actin's structural role in spine morphology. Specifically, elevated ADF/cofilin activity markedly enhanced surface addition of AMPARs after chemically induced long-term potentiation (LTP), whereas inhibition of ADF/cofilin abolished AMPAR addition. We found that chemically induced LTP elicited a temporal sequence of ADF/cofilin dephosphorylation and phosphorylation that underlies AMPAR trafficking and spine enlargement. These findings suggest that temporally regulated ADF/cofilin activities function in postsynaptic modifications of receptor number and spine size during synaptic plasticity.

  13. The role of sleep in regulating structural plasticity and synaptic strength: Implications for memory and cognitive function.

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    Raven, Frank; Van der Zee, Eddy A; Meerlo, Peter; Havekes, Robbert

    2017-05-18

    Dendritic spines are the major sites of synaptic transmission in the central nervous system. Alterations in the strength of synaptic connections directly affect the neuronal communication, which is crucial for brain function as well as the processing and storage of information. Sleep and sleep loss bidirectionally alter structural plasticity, by affecting spine numbers and morphology, which ultimately can affect the functional output of the brain in terms of alertness, cognition, and mood. Experimental data from studies in rodents suggest that sleep deprivation may impact structural plasticity in different ways. One of the current views, referred to as the synaptic homeostasis hypothesis, suggests that wake promotes synaptic potentiation whereas sleep facilitates synaptic downscaling. On the other hand, several studies have now shown that sleep deprivation can reduce spine density and attenuate synaptic efficacy in the hippocampus. These data are the basis for the view that sleep promotes hippocampal structural plasticity critical for memory formation. Altogether, the impact of sleep and sleep loss may vary between regions of the brain. A better understanding of the role that sleep plays in regulating structural plasticity may ultimately lead to novel therapeutic approaches for brain disorders that are accompanied by sleep disturbances and sleep loss. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Regulation of extrasynaptic signaling by polysialylated NCAM: Impact for synaptic plasticity and cognitive functions.

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    Varbanov, Hristo; Dityatev, Alexander

    2017-06-01

    The activation of synaptic N-methyl-d-aspartate-receptors (NMDARs) is crucial for induction of synaptic plasticity and supports cell survival, whereas activation of extrasynaptic NMDARs inhibits long-term potentiation and triggers neurodegeneration. A soluble polysialylated form of the neural cell adhesion molecule (polySia-NCAM) suppresses signaling through peri-/extrasynaptic GluN2B-containing NMDARs. Genetic or enzymatic manipulations blocking this mechanism result in impaired synaptic plasticity and learning, which could be repaired by reintroduction of polySia, or inhibition of either GluN1/GluN2B receptors or downstream signaling through RasGRF1 and p38 MAP kinase. Ectodomain shedding of NCAM, and hence generation of soluble NCAM, is controlled by metalloproteases of a disintegrin and metalloprotease (ADAM) family. As polySia-NCAM is predominantly associated with GABAergic interneurons in the prefrontal cortex, it is noteworthy that EphrinA5/EphA3-induced ADAM10 activity promotes polySia-NCAM shedding in these neurons. Thus, in addition to the well-known regulation of synaptic NMDARs by the secreted molecule Reelin, shed polySia-NCAM may restrain activation of extrasynaptic NMDARs. These data support a concept that GABAergic interneuron-derived extracellular proteins control the balance in synaptic/extrasynaptic NMDAR-mediated signaling in principal cells. Strikingly, dysregulation of Reelin or polySia expression is linked to schizophrenia. Thus, targeting of the GABAergic interneuron-principle cell communication and restoring the balance in synaptic/extrasynaptic NMDARs represent promising strategies for treatment of psychiatric diseases. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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

    KAUST Repository

    Orlando, Marta

    2017-10-17

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-10-23

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

  17. EPO induces changes in synaptic transmission and plasticity in the dentate gyrus of rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almaguer-Melian, William; Mercerón-Martínez, Daymara; Delgado-Ocaña, Susana; Pavón-Fuentes, Nancy; Ledón, Nuris; Bergado, Jorge A

    2016-06-01

    Erythropoietin has shown wide physiological effects on the central nervous system in animal models of disease, and in healthy animals. We have recently shown that systemic EPO administration 15 min, but not 5 h, after daily training in a water maze is able to induce the recovery of spatial memory in fimbria-fornix chronic-lesioned animals, suggesting that acute EPO triggers mechanisms which can modulate the active neural plasticity mechanism involved in spatial memory acquisition in lesioned animals. Additionally, this EPO effect is accompanied by the up-regulation of plasticity-related early genes. More remarkably, this time-dependent effects on learning recovery could signify that EPO in nerve system modulate specific living-cellular processes. In the present article, we focus on the question if EPO could modulate the induction of long-term synaptic plasticity like LTP and LTD, which presumably could support our previous published data. Our results show that acute EPO peripheral administration 15 min before the induction of synaptic plasticity is able to increase the magnitude of the LTP (more prominent in PSA than fEPSP-Slope) to facilitate the induction of LTD, and to protect LTP from depotentiation. These findings showing that EPO modulates in vivo synaptic plasticity sustain the assumption that EPO can act not only as a neuroprotective substance, but is also able to modulate transient neural plasticity mechanisms and therefore to promote the recovery of nerve function after an established chronic brain lesion. According to these results, EPO could be use as a molecular tool for neurorestaurative treatments. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. The role of 19S proteasome associated deubiquitinases in activity-dependent hippocampal synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yun, Di; Zhuang, Yinghan; Kreutz, Michael R; Behnisch, Thomas

    2018-01-31

    Posttranslational modification and degradation of proteins by the ubiquitin-proteasome system (UPS) is crucial to synaptic transmission. It is well established that 19S proteasome associated deubiquitinases (DUBs) reverse the process of ubiquitination by removing ubiquitin from their substrates. However, their potential contribution to hippocampal synaptic plasticity has not been addressed in detail. Here, we report that inhibition of the 19S proteasome associated DUBs, ubiquitin C-terminal hydrolase 5 (UCHL5) and ubiquitin-specific peptidase 14 (USP14) by b-AP15 results in an accumulation of polyubiquitinated proteins and a reduction of monomeric ubiquitin without overt effects on 26S proteasome activity. b-AP15 led to a suppression of mTOR-p70S6K signaling and an increase in levels of p-p38 MAPK, two pathways essentially involved in establishing various forms of activity-dependent plasticity. Additionally, b-AP15 impaired the induction of late-phase long-term potentiation (L-LTP), induced the transformation of mGluR-mediated protein synthesis-independent long-term depression (early-LTD) to L-LTD and promoted heterosynaptic stabilization through synaptic tagging/capture (STC) in the hippocampal CA1 region of mice. The activity of 19S proteasome associated DUBs was also required for the enhancement of short-term potentiation (STP) induced by brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). Altogether, these results indicate an essential role of 19S proteasome associated DUBs in regulating activity-dependent hippocampal synaptic plasticity. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Mammalian Vestibular Macular Synaptic Plasticity: Results from SLS-2 Spaceflight

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ross, Muriel D.D.

    1994-01-01

    The effects of exposure to microgravity were studied in rat utricular maculas collected inflight (IF, day 13), post-flight on day of orbiter landing (day 14, R+O) and after 14 days (R+ML). Controls were collected at corresponding times. The objectives were 1) to learn whether hair cell ribbon synapses counts would be higher in tissues collected in space than in tissues collected postflight during or after readaptation to Earth's gravity; and 2) to compare results with those of SLS-1. Maculas were fixed by immersion, micro-dissected, dehydrated and prepared for ultrastructural study by usual methods. Synapses were counted in 100 serial sections 150 nm thick and were located to specific hair cells in montages of every 7th section. Counts were analyzed for statistical significance using analysis of variance. Results in maculas of IF dissected rats, one 13 day control (IFC), and one R + 0 rat have been analyzed. Study of an R+ML macula is nearly completed. For type I cells, IF mean is 2.3 +/-1.6; IFC mean is 1.6 +/-1.0; R+O mean is 2.3 +/- 1.6. For type II cells, IF mean is 11.4 +/- 17.1; IFC mean is 5.5 +/-3.5; R+O mean is 10.1 +/- 7.4. The difference between IF and IFC means for type I cells is statistically significant (p less than 0.0464). For type It cells, IF compared to IFC means, p less than 0.0003; and for IFC to R+O means, p less than 0.0139. Shifts toward spheres (p less than 0.0001) and pairs (p less than 0.0139) were significant in type II cells of IF rats. The results are largely replicating findings from SLS-1 and indicate that spaceflight affects synaptic number, form and distribution, particularly in type II hair cells. The increases in synaptic number and in sphere-like ribbons are interpreted to improve synaptic efficacy, to help return afferent discharges to a more normal state. Findings indicate that a great capacity for synaptic plasticity exists in mammalian gravity sensors, and that this plasticity is more dominant in the local circuitry. The

  20. Effects of Synaptic Plasticity on Phase and Period Locking in a Network of Two Oscillatory Neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    We study the effects of synaptic plasticity on the determination of firing period and relative phases in a network of two oscillatory neurons coupled with reciprocal inhibition. We combine the phase response curves of the neurons with the short-term synaptic plasticity properties of the synapses to define Poincaré maps for the activity of an oscillatory network. Fixed points of these maps correspond to the phase-locked modes of the network. These maps allow us to analyze the dependence of the resulting network activity on the properties of network components. Using a combination of analysis and simulations, we show how various parameters of the model affect the existence and stability of phase-locked solutions. We find conditions on the synaptic plasticity profiles and the phase response curves of the neurons for the network to be able to maintain a constant firing period, while varying the phase of locking between the neurons or vice versa. A generalization to cobwebbing for two-dimensional maps is also discussed. PMID:24791223

  1. Reelin Supplementation Enhances Cognitive Ability, Synaptic Plasticity, and Dendritic Spine Density

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rogers, Justin T.; Rusiana, Ian; Trotter, Justin; Zhao, Lisa; Donaldson, Erika; Pak, Daniel T.S.; Babus, Lenard W.; Peters, Melinda; Banko, Jessica L.; Chavis, Pascale; Rebeck, G. William; Hoe, Hyang-Sook; Weeber, Edwin J.

    2011-01-01

    Apolipoprotein receptors belong to an evolutionarily conserved surface receptor family that has intimate roles in the modulation of synaptic plasticity and is necessary for proper hippocampal-dependent memory formation. The known lipoprotein receptor ligand Reelin is important for normal synaptic plasticity, dendritic morphology, and cognitive…

  2. c-Rel, an NF-[kappa]B Family Transcription Factor, Is Required for Hippocampal Long-Term Synaptic Plasticity and Memory Formation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahn, Hyung Jin; Hernandez, Caterina M.; Levenson, Jonathan M.; Lubin, Farah D.; Liou, Hsiou-Chi; Sweatt, J. David

    2008-01-01

    Transcription is a critical component for consolidation of long-term memory. However, relatively few transcriptional mechanisms have been identified for the regulation of gene expression in memory formation. In the current study, we investigated the activity of one specific member of the NF-[kappa]B transcription factor family, c-Rel, during…

  3. Natural Firing Patterns Imply Low Sensitivity of Synaptic Plasticity to Spike Timing Compared with Firing Rate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graupner, Michael; Wallisch, Pascal; Ostojic, Srdjan

    2016-11-02

    Synaptic plasticity is sensitive to the rate and the timing of presynaptic and postsynaptic action potentials. In experimental protocols inducing plasticity, the imposed spike trains are typically regular and the relative timing between every presynaptic and postsynaptic spike is fixed. This is at odds with firing patterns observed in the cortex of intact animals, where cells fire irregularly and the timing between presynaptic and postsynaptic spikes varies. To investigate synaptic changes elicited by in vivo-like firing, we used numerical simulations and mathematical analysis of synaptic plasticity models. We found that the influence of spike timing on plasticity is weaker than expected from regular stimulation protocols. Moreover, when neurons fire irregularly, synaptic changes induced by precise spike timing can be equivalently induced by a modest firing rate variation. Our findings bridge the gap between existing results on synaptic plasticity and plasticity occurring in vivo, and challenge the dominant role of spike timing in plasticity. Synaptic plasticity, the change in efficacy of connections between neurons, is thought to underlie learning and memory. The dominant paradigm posits that the precise timing of neural action potentials (APs) is central for plasticity induction. This concept is based on experiments using highly regular and stereotyped patterns of APs, in stark contrast with natural neuronal activity. Using synaptic plasticity models, we investigated how irregular, in vivo-like activity shapes synaptic plasticity. We found that synaptic changes induced by precise timing of APs are much weaker than suggested by regular stimulation protocols, and can be equivalently induced by modest variations of the AP rate alone. Our results call into question the dominant role of precise AP timing for plasticity in natural conditions. Copyright © 2016 Graupner et al.

  4. Regular exercise prevents sleep deprivation associated impairment of long-term memory and synaptic plasticity in the CA1 area of the hippocampus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zagaar, Munder; Dao, An; Levine, Amber; Alhaider, Ibrahim; Alkadhi, Karim

    2013-05-01

    The present study aimed to investigate the effects of treadmill exercise on sleep deprivation (S-D)-induced impairment of hippocampal dependent long-term memory, late phase long-term potentiation (L-LTP) and its signaling cascade in the cornu ammonis 1 (CA1) area. Animals were conditioned to run on treadmills for 4 weeks then deprived of sleep for 24 h using the columns-in-water method. We tested the effect of exercise and/or S-D on behavioral performance using a post-learning paradigm in the radial arm water maze (RAWM) and in vivo extracellular recording in the CA1 area. The levels of L-LTP-related molecules in the CA1 area were then assessed both before and after L-LTP induction. After 24 h of S-D, spatial long-term memory impairment in the RAWM and L-LTP suppression was prevented by 4 weeks of regular exercise. Regular exercise also restored the S-D-associated decreases in the basal levels of key signaling molecules such as: calcium/calmodulin kinase IV (CaMKIV), mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK/ERK), phosphorylated cAMP response element-binding protein (P-CREB) and brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), in the CA1 area. After L-LTP induction, regular exercise also prevented the S-D-induced down regulation of BDNF and P-CREB protein levels. The results suggest that our exercise protocol may prevent 24-h S-D-induced impairments in long-term memory and LTP by preventing deleterious changes in the basal and post-stimulation levels of P-CREB and BDNF associated with S-D.

  5. Theta-specific susceptibility in a model of adaptive synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albers, Christian; Schmiedt, Joscha T; Pawelzik, Klaus R

    2013-01-01

    Learning and memory formation are processes which are still not fully understood. It is widely believed that synaptic plasticity is the most important neural substrate for both. However, it has been observed that large-scale theta band oscillations in the mammalian brain are beneficial for learning, and it is not clear if and how this is linked to synaptic plasticity. Also, the underlying dynamics of synaptic plasticity itself have not been completely uncovered yet, especially for non-linear interactions between multiple spikes. Here, we present a new and simple dynamical model of synaptic plasticity. It incorporates novel contributions to synaptic plasticity including adaptation processes. We test its ability to reproduce non-linear effects on four different data sets of complex spike patterns, and show that the model can be tuned to reproduce the observed synaptic changes in great detail. When subjected to periodically varying firing rates, already linear pair based spike timing dependent plasticity (STDP) predicts a specific susceptibility of synaptic plasticity to pre- and postsynaptic firing rate oscillations in the theta-band. Our model retains this band-pass property, while for high firing rates in the non-linear regime it modifies the specific phase relation required for depression and potentiation. For realistic parameters, maximal synaptic potentiation occurs when the postsynaptic is trailing the presynaptic activity slightly. Anti-phase oscillations tend to depress it. Our results are well in line with experimental findings, providing a straightforward and mechanistic explanation for the importance of theta oscillations for learning.

  6. The RNA-centred view of the synapse: non-coding RNAs and synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smalheiser, Neil R

    2014-09-26

    If mRNAs were the only RNAs made by a neuron, there would be a simple mapping of mRNAs to proteins. However, microRNAs and other non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs; endo-siRNAs, piRNAs, BC1, BC200, antisense and long ncRNAs, repeat-related transcripts, etc.) regulate mRNAs via effects on protein translation as well as transcriptional and epigenetic mechanisms. Not only are genes ON or OFF, but their ability to be translated can be turned ON or OFF at the level of synapses, supporting an enormous increase in information capacity. Here, I review evidence that ncRNAs are expressed pervasively within dendrites in mammalian brain; that some are activity-dependent and highly enriched near synapses; and that synaptic ncRNAs participate in plasticity responses including learning and memory. Ultimately, ncRNAs can be viewed as the post-it notes of the neuron. They have no literal meaning of their own, but derive their functions from where (and to what) they are stuck. This may explain, in part, why ncRNAs differ so dramatically from protein-coding genes, both in terms of the usual indicators of functionality and in terms of evolutionary constraints. ncRNAs do not appear to be direct mediators of synaptic transmission in the manner of neurotransmitters or receptors, yet they orchestrate synaptic plasticity-and may drive species-specific changes in cognition.

  7. Synaptic plasticity in medial vestibular nucleus neurons: comparison with computational requirements of VOR adaptation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John R W Menzies

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Vestibulo-ocular reflex (VOR gain adaptation, a longstanding experimental model of cerebellar learning, utilizes sites of plasticity in both cerebellar cortex and brainstem. However, the mechanisms by which the activity of cortical Purkinje cells may guide synaptic plasticity in brainstem vestibular neurons are unclear. Theoretical analyses indicate that vestibular plasticity should depend upon the correlation between Purkinje cell and vestibular afferent inputs, so that, in gain-down learning for example, increased cortical activity should induce long-term depression (LTD at vestibular synapses. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here we expressed this correlational learning rule in its simplest form, as an anti-Hebbian, heterosynaptic spike-timing dependent plasticity interaction between excitatory (vestibular and inhibitory (floccular inputs converging on medial vestibular nucleus (MVN neurons (input-spike-timing dependent plasticity, iSTDP. To test this rule, we stimulated vestibular afferents to evoke EPSCs in rat MVN neurons in vitro. Control EPSC recordings were followed by an induction protocol where membrane hyperpolarizing pulses, mimicking IPSPs evoked by flocculus inputs, were paired with single vestibular nerve stimuli. A robust LTD developed at vestibular synapses when the afferent EPSPs coincided with membrane hyperpolarization, while EPSPs occurring before or after the simulated IPSPs induced no lasting change. Furthermore, the iSTDP rule also successfully predicted the effects of a complex protocol using EPSP trains designed to mimic classical conditioning. CONCLUSIONS: These results, in strong support of theoretical predictions, suggest that the cerebellum alters the strength of vestibular synapses on MVN neurons through hetero-synaptic, anti-Hebbian iSTDP. Since the iSTDP rule does not depend on post-synaptic firing, it suggests a possible mechanism for VOR adaptation without compromising gaze-holding and VOR

  8. Different Compartments of Apical CA1 Dendrites Have Different Plasticity Thresholds for Expressing Synaptic Tagging and Capture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sajikumar, Sreedharan; Korte, Martin

    2011-01-01

    The consolidation process from short- to long-term memory depends on the type of stimulation received from a specific neuronal network and on the cooperativity and associativity between different synaptic inputs converging onto a specific neuron. We show here that the plasticity thresholds for inducing LTP are different in proximal and distal…

  9. Nicotine Uses Neuron-Glia Communication to Enhance Hippocampal Synaptic Transmission and Long-term Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    López-Hidalgo, Mónica; Salgado-Puga, Karla; Alvarado-Martínez, Reynaldo; Medina, Andrea Cristina; Prado-Alcalá, Roberto A.; García-Colunga, Jesús

    2012-01-01

    Nicotine enhances synaptic transmission and facilitates long-term memory. Now it is known that bi-directional glia-neuron interactions play important roles in the physiology of the brain. However, the involvement of glial cells in the effects of nicotine has not been considered until now. In particular, the gliotransmitter D-serine, an endogenous co-agonist of NMDA receptors, enables different types of synaptic plasticity and memory in the hippocampus. Here, we report that hippocampal long-term synaptic plasticity induced by nicotine was annulled by an enzyme that degrades endogenous D-serine, or by an NMDA receptor antagonist that acts at the D-serine binding site. Accordingly, both effects of nicotine: the enhancement of synaptic transmission and facilitation of long-term memory were eliminated by impairing glial cells with fluoroacetate, and were restored with exogenous D-serine. Together, these results show that glial D-serine is essential for the long-term effects of nicotine on synaptic plasticity and memory, and they highlight the roles of glial cells as key participants in brain functions. PMID:23185511

  10. Strain-dependent variations in spatial learning and in hippocampal synaptic plasticity in the dentate gyrus of freely behaving rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Denise eManahan-Vaughan

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Hippocampal synaptic plasticity is believed to comprise the cellular basis for spatial learning. Strain-dependent differences in synaptic plasticity in the CA1 region have been reported. However, it is not known whether these differences extend to other synapses within the trisynaptic circuit, although there is evidence for morphological variations within that path. We investigated whether Wistar and Hooded Lister (HL rat strains express differences in synaptic plasticity in the dentate gyrus in vivo. We also explored whether they exhibit differences in the ability to engage in spatial learning in an 8-arm radial maze. Basal synaptic transmission was stable over a 24h period in both rat strains, and the input-output relationship of both strains was not significantly different. Paired-pulse analysis revealed significantly less paired-pulse facilitation in the Hooded Lister strain when pulses were given 40-100 msec apart. Low frequency stimulation at 1Hz evoked long-term depression (>24h in Wistar and short-term depression (<2h in HL rats; 200Hz stimulation induced long-term potentiation (>24h in Wistar, and a transient, significantly smaller potentiation (<1h in HL rats, suggesting that HL rats have higher thresholds for expression of persistent synaptic plasticity. Training for 10d in an 8-arm radial maze revealed that HL rats master the working memory task faster than Wistar rats, although both strains show an equivalent performance by the end of the trial period. HL rats also perform more efficiently in a double working and reference memory task. On the other hand, Wistar rats show better reference memory performance on the final (8-10 days of training. Wistar rats were less active and more anxious than HL rats.These data suggest that strain-dependent variations in hippocampal synaptic plasticity occur in different hippocampal synapses. A clear correlation with differences in spatial learning is not evident however.

  11. A role for calcium-permeable AMPA receptors in synaptic plasticity and learning.

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    Brian J Wiltgen

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available A central concept in the field of learning and memory is that NMDARs are essential for synaptic plasticity and memory formation. Surprisingly then, multiple studies have found that behavioral experience can reduce or eliminate the contribution of these receptors to learning. The cellular mechanisms that mediate learning in the absence of NMDAR activation are currently unknown. To address this issue, we examined the contribution of Ca(2+-permeable AMPARs to learning and plasticity in the hippocampus. Mutant mice were engineered with a conditional genetic deletion of GluR2 in the CA1 region of the hippocampus (GluR2-cKO mice. Electrophysiology experiments in these animals revealed a novel form of long-term potentiation (LTP that was independent of NMDARs and mediated by GluR2-lacking Ca(2+-permeable AMPARs. Behavioral analyses found that GluR2-cKO mice were impaired on multiple hippocampus-dependent learning tasks that required NMDAR activation. This suggests that AMPAR-mediated LTP interferes with NMDAR-dependent plasticity. In contrast, NMDAR-independent learning was normal in knockout mice and required the activation of Ca(2+-permeable AMPARs. These results suggest that GluR2-lacking AMPARs play a functional and previously unidentified role in learning; they appear to mediate changes in synaptic strength that occur after plasticity has been established by NMDARs.

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

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    Ayla eAksoy Aksel

    2013-08-01

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

  13. Synaptic Plasticity and Spike Synchronisation in Neuronal Networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borges, Rafael R.; Borges, Fernando S.; Lameu, Ewandson L.; Protachevicz, Paulo R.; Iarosz, Kelly C.; Caldas, Iberê L.; Viana, Ricardo L.; Macau, Elbert E. N.; Baptista, Murilo S.; Grebogi, Celso; Batista, Antonio M.

    2017-09-01

    Brain plasticity, also known as neuroplasticity, is a fundamental mechanism of neuronal adaptation in response to changes in the environment or due to brain injury. In this review, we show our results about the effects of synaptic plasticity on neuronal networks composed by Hodgkin-Huxley neurons. We show that the final topology of the evolved network depends crucially on the ratio between the strengths of the inhibitory and excitatory synapses. Excitation of the same order of inhibition revels an evolved network that presents the rich-club phenomenon, well known to exist in the brain. For initial networks with considerably larger inhibitory strengths, we observe the emergence of a complex evolved topology, where neurons sparsely connected to other neurons, also a typical topology of the brain. The presence of noise enhances the strength of both types of synapses, but if the initial network has synapses of both natures with similar strengths. Finally, we show how the synchronous behaviour of the evolved network will reflect its evolved topology.

  14. Synaptic Plasticity and Spike Synchronisation in Neuronal Networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borges, Rafael R.; Borges, Fernando S.; Lameu, Ewandson L.; Protachevicz, Paulo R.; Iarosz, Kelly C.; Caldas, Iberê L.; Viana, Ricardo L.; Macau, Elbert E. N.; Baptista, Murilo S.; Grebogi, Celso; Batista, Antonio M.

    2017-12-01

    Brain plasticity, also known as neuroplasticity, is a fundamental mechanism of neuronal adaptation in response to changes in the environment or due to brain injury. In this review, we show our results about the effects of synaptic plasticity on neuronal networks composed by Hodgkin-Huxley neurons. We show that the final topology of the evolved network depends crucially on the ratio between the strengths of the inhibitory and excitatory synapses. Excitation of the same order of inhibition revels an evolved network that presents the rich-club phenomenon, well known to exist in the brain. For initial networks with considerably larger inhibitory strengths, we observe the emergence of a complex evolved topology, where neurons sparsely connected to other neurons, also a typical topology of the brain. The presence of noise enhances the strength of both types of synapses, but if the initial network has synapses of both natures with similar strengths. Finally, we show how the synchronous behaviour of the evolved network will reflect its evolved topology.

  15. Exposure to low-dose rotenone precipitates synaptic plasticity alterations in PINK1 heterozygous knockout mice.

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    Martella, G; Madeo, G; Maltese, M; Vanni, V; Puglisi, F; Ferraro, E; Schirinzi, T; Valente, E M; Bonanni, L; Shen, J; Mandolesi, G; Mercuri, N B; Bonsi, P; Pisani, A

    2016-07-01

    Heterozygous mutations in the PINK1 gene are considered a susceptibility factor to develop early-onset Parkinson's disease (PD), as supported by dopamine hypometabolism in asymptomatic mutation carriers and subtle alterations of dopamine-dependent striatal synaptic plasticity in heterozygous PINK1 knockout (PINK1(+/-)) mice. The aim of the present study was to investigate whether exposure to low-dose rotenone of heterozygous PINK1(+/-) mice, compared to their wild-type PINK1(+/+) littermates, could impact on dopamine-dependent striatal synaptic plasticity, in the absence of apparent structural alterations. Mice were exposed to a range of concentrations of rotenone (0.01-1mg/kg). Chronic treatment with concentrations of rotenone up to 0.8mg/kg did not cause manifest neuronal loss or changes in ATP levels both in the striatum or substantia nigra of PINK1(+/-) and PINK1(+/+) mice. Moreover, rotenone (up to 0.8mg/kg) treatment did not induce mislocalization of the mitochondrial membrane protein Tom20 and release of cytochrome c in PINK1(+/-) striata. Accordingly, basic electrophysiological properties of nigral dopaminergic and striatal medium spiny neurons (MSNs) were normal. Despite the lack of gross alterations in neuronal viability in chronically-treated PINK1(+/-), a complete loss of both long-term depression (LTD) and long-term potentiation (LTP) was recorded in MSNs from PINK1(+/-) mice treated with a low rotenone (0.1mg/kg) concentration. Even lower concentrations (0.01mg/kg) blocked LTP induction in heterozygous PINK1(+/-) MSNs compared to PINK1(+/+) mice. Of interest, chronic pretreatment with the antioxidants alpha-tocopherol and Trolox, a water-soluble analog of vitamin E and powerful antioxidant, rescued synaptic plasticity impairment, confirming that, at the doses we utilized, rotenone did not induce irreversible alterations. In this model, chronic exposure to low-doses of rotenone was not sufficient to alter mitochondrial integrity and ATP production, but

  16. UBE3A Regulates Synaptic Plasticity and Learning and Memory by Controlling SK2 Channel Endocytosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiandong Sun

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Gated solely by activity-induced changes in intracellular calcium, small-conductance potassium channels (SKs are critical for a variety of functions in the CNS, from learning and memory to rhythmic activity and sleep. While there is a wealth of information on SK2 gating, kinetics, and Ca2+ sensitivity, little is known regarding the regulation of SK2 subcellular localization. We report here that synaptic SK2 levels are regulated by the E3 ubiquitin ligase UBE3A, whose deficiency results in Angelman syndrome and overexpression in increased risk of autistic spectrum disorder. UBE3A directly ubiquitinates SK2 in the C-terminal domain, which facilitates endocytosis. In UBE3A-deficient mice, increased postsynaptic SK2 levels result in decreased NMDA receptor activation, thereby impairing hippocampal long-term synaptic plasticity. Impairments in both synaptic plasticity and fear conditioning memory in UBE3A-deficient mice are significantly ameliorated by blocking SK2. These results elucidate a mechanism by which UBE3A directly influences cognitive function.

  17. Miglustat Reverts the Impairment of Synaptic Plasticity in a Mouse Model of NPC Disease

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    G. D’Arcangelo

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Niemann-Pick type C disease is an autosomal recessive storage disorder, characterized by abnormal sequestration of unesterified cholesterol within the late endolysosomal compartment of cells and accumulation of gangliosides and other sphingolipids. Progressive neurological deterioration and insurgence of symptoms like ataxia, seizure, and cognitive decline until severe dementia are pathognomonic features of the disease. Here, we studied synaptic plasticity phenomena and evaluated ERKs activation in the hippocampus of BALB/c NPC1−/− mice, a well described animal model of the disease. Our results demonstrated an impairment of both induction and maintenance of long term synaptic potentiation in NPC1−/− mouse slices, associated with the lack of ERKs phosphorylation. We then investigated the effects of Miglustat, a recent approved drug for the treatment of NPCD. We found that in vivo Miglustat administration in NPC1−/− mice was able to rescue synaptic plasticity deficits, to restore ERKs activation and to counteract hyperexcitability. Overall, these data indicate that Miglustat may be effective for treating the neurological deficits associated with NPCD, such as seizures and dementia.

  18. Magnesium protects cognitive functions and synaptic plasticity in streptozotocin-induced sporadic Alzheimer's model.

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    Xu, Zhi-Peng; Li, Li; Bao, Jian; Wang, Zhi-Hao; Zeng, Juan; Liu, En-Jie; Li, Xiao-Guang; Huang, Rong-Xi; Gao, Di; Li, Meng-Zhu; Zhang, Yao; Liu, Gong-Ping; Wang, Jian-Zhi

    2014-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by profound synapse loss and impairments of learning and memory. Magnesium affects many biochemical mechanisms that are vital for neuronal properties and synaptic plasticity. Recent studies have demonstrated that the serum and brain magnesium levels are decreased in AD patients; however, the exact role of magnesium in AD pathogenesis remains unclear. Here, we found that the intraperitoneal administration of magnesium sulfate increased the brain magnesium levels and protected learning and memory capacities in streptozotocin-induced sporadic AD model rats. We also found that magnesium sulfate reversed impairments in long-term potentiation (LTP), dendritic abnormalities, and the impaired recruitment of synaptic proteins. Magnesium sulfate treatment also decreased tau hyperphosphorylation by increasing the inhibitory phosphorylation of GSK-3β at serine 9, thereby increasing the activity of Akt at Ser473 and PI3K at Tyr458/199, and improving insulin sensitivity. We conclude that magnesium treatment protects cognitive function and synaptic plasticity by inhibiting GSK-3β in sporadic AD model rats, which suggests a potential role for magnesium in AD therapy.

  19. Magnesium protects cognitive functions and synaptic plasticity in streptozotocin-induced sporadic Alzheimer's model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhi-Peng Xu

    Full Text Available Alzheimer's disease (AD is characterized by profound synapse loss and impairments of learning and memory. Magnesium affects many biochemical mechanisms that are vital for neuronal properties and synaptic plasticity. Recent studies have demonstrated that the serum and brain magnesium levels are decreased in AD patients; however, the exact role of magnesium in AD pathogenesis remains unclear. Here, we found that the intraperitoneal administration of magnesium sulfate increased the brain magnesium levels and protected learning and memory capacities in streptozotocin-induced sporadic AD model rats. We also found that magnesium sulfate reversed impairments in long-term potentiation (LTP, dendritic abnormalities, and the impaired recruitment of synaptic proteins. Magnesium sulfate treatment also decreased tau hyperphosphorylation by increasing the inhibitory phosphorylation of GSK-3β at serine 9, thereby increasing the activity of Akt at Ser473 and PI3K at Tyr458/199, and improving insulin sensitivity. We conclude that magnesium treatment protects cognitive function and synaptic plasticity by inhibiting GSK-3β in sporadic AD model rats, which suggests a potential role for magnesium in AD therapy.

  20. Mitochondria and Synaptic Plasticity in the Mature and Aging Nervous System.

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    Todorova, Vyara; Blokland, Arjan

    2017-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity in the adult brain is believed to represent the cellular mechanisms of learning and memory. Mitochondria are involved in the regulation of the complex processes of synaptic plasticity. This paper reviews the current knowledge on the regulatory roles of mitochondria in the function and plasticity of synapses and the implications of mitochondrial dysfunctions in synaptic transmission. First, the importance of mitochondrial distribution and motility for maintenance and strengthening of dendritic spines, but also for new spines/synapses formation is presented. Secondly, the major mitochondrial functions as energy supplier and calcium buffer organelles are considered as possible explanation for their essential and regulatory roles in neuronal plasticity processes. Thirdly, the effects of synaptic potentiation on mitochondrial gene expression are discussed. And finally, the relation between age-related alterations in synaptic plasticity and mitochondrial dysfunctions is considered. It appears that memory loss and neurodegeneration during aging are related to mitochondrial (dys)function. Although, it is clear that mitochondria are essential for synaptic plasticity, further studies are indicated to scrutinize the intracellular and molecular processes that regulate the functions of mitochondria in synaptic plasticity.

  1. Self-assembly and plasticity of synaptic domains through a reaction-diffusion mechanism

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    Haselwandter, Christoph A.; Kardar, Mehran; Triller, Antoine; da Silveira, Rava Azeredo

    2015-09-01

    Signal transmission across chemical synapses relies crucially on neurotransmitter receptor molecules, concentrated in postsynaptic membrane domains along with scaffold and other postsynaptic molecules. The strength of the transmitted signal depends on the number of receptor molecules in postsynaptic domains, and activity-induced variation in the receptor number is one of the mechanisms of postsynaptic plasticity. Recent experiments have demonstrated that the reaction and diffusion properties of receptors and scaffolds at the membrane, alone, yield spontaneous formation of receptor-scaffold domains of the stable characteristic size observed in neurons. On the basis of these experiments we develop a model describing synaptic receptor domains in terms of the underlying reaction-diffusion processes. Our model predicts that the spontaneous formation of receptor-scaffold domains of the stable characteristic size observed in experiments depends on a few key reactions between receptors and scaffolds. Furthermore, our model suggests novel mechanisms for the alignment of pre- and postsynaptic domains and for short-term postsynaptic plasticity in receptor number. We predict that synaptic receptor domains localize in membrane regions with an increased receptor diffusion coefficient or a decreased scaffold diffusion coefficient. Similarly, we find that activity-dependent increases or decreases in receptor or scaffold diffusion yield a transient increase in the number of receptor molecules concentrated in postsynaptic domains. Thus, the proposed reaction-diffusion model puts forth a coherent set of biophysical mechanisms for the formation, stability, and plasticity of molecular domains on the postsynaptic membrane.

  2. Plasticity in respiratory motor neurons in response to reduced synaptic inputs: A form of homeostatic plasticity in respiratory control?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braegelmann, K M; Streeter, K A; Fields, D P; Baker, T L

    2017-01-01

    For most individuals, the respiratory control system produces a remarkably stable and coordinated motor output-recognizable as a breath-from birth until death. Very little is understood regarding the processes by which the respiratory control system maintains network stability in the presence of changing physiological demands and network properties that occur throughout life. An emerging principle of neuroscience is that neural activity is sensed and adjusted locally to assure that neurons continue to operate in an optimal range, yet to date, it is unknown whether such homeostatic plasticity is a feature of the neurons controlling breathing. Here, we review the evidence that local mechanisms sense and respond to perturbations in respiratory neural activity, with a focus on plasticity in respiratory motor neurons. We discuss whether these forms of plasticity represent homeostatic plasticity in respiratory control. We present new analyses demonstrating that reductions in synaptic inputs to phrenic motor neurons elicit a compensatory enhancement of phrenic inspiratory motor output, a form of plasticity termed inactivity-induced phrenic motor facilitation (iPMF), that is proportional to the magnitude of activity deprivation. Although the physiological role of iPMF is not understood, we hypothesize that it has an important role in protecting the drive to breathe during conditions of prolonged or intermittent reductions in respiratory neural activity, such as following spinal cord injury or during central sleep apnea. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  3. In the Piriform Cortex, the Primary Impetus for Information Encoding through Synaptic Plasticity Is Provided by Descending Rather than Ascending Olfactory Inputs.

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    Strauch, Christina; Manahan-Vaughan, Denise

    2018-02-01

    Information encoding by means of persistent changes in synaptic strength supports long-term information storage and memory in structures such as the hippocampus. In the piriform cortex (PC), that engages in the processing of associative memory, only short-term synaptic plasticity has been described to date, both in vitro and in anesthetized rodents in vivo. Whether the PC maintains changes in synaptic strength for longer periods of time is unknown: Such a property would indicate that it can serve as a repository for long-term memories. Here, we report that in freely behaving animals, frequency-dependent synaptic plasticity does not occur in the anterior PC (aPC) following patterned stimulation of the olfactory bulb (OB). Naris closure changed action potential properties of aPC neurons and enabled expression of long-term potentiation (LTP) by OB stimulation, indicating that an intrinsic ability to express synaptic plasticity is present. Odor discrimination and categorization in the aPC is supported by descending inputs from the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC). Here, OFC stimulation resulted in LTP (>4 h), suggesting that this structure plays an important role in promoting information encoding through synaptic plasticity in the aPC. These persistent changes in synaptic strength are likely to comprise a means through which long-term memories are encoded and/or retained in the PC. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press.

  4. Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation effectively facilitates spatial cognition and synaptic plasticity associated with increasing the levels of BDNF and synaptic proteins in Wistar rats.

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    Shang, Yingchun; Wang, Xin; Shang, Xueliang; Zhang, Hui; Liu, Zhipeng; Yin, Tao; Zhang, Tao

    2016-10-01

    Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) is a non-invasive technique, by which cognitive deficits can be alleviated. Furthermore, rTMS may facilitate learning and memory. However, its underlying mechanism is still little known. The aim of this study was to investigate if the facilitation of spatial cognition and synaptic plasticity, induced by rTMS, is regulated by enhancing pre- and postsynaptic proteins in normal rats. Morris water maze (MWM) test was performed to examine the spatial cognition. The synaptic plasticity, including long-term potentiation (LTP) and depotentiation (DEP), presynaptic plasticity paired-pulse facilitation (PPF), from the hippocampal Schaffer collaterals to CA1 region was subsequently measured using in vivo electrophysiological techniques. The expressions of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), presynaptic protein synaptophysin (SYP) and postsynaptic protein NR2B were measured by Western blot. Our data show that the spatial learning/memory and reversal learning/memory in rTMS rats were remarkably enhanced compared to that in the Sham group. Furthermore, LTP and DEP as well as PPF were effectively facilitated by 5Hz-rTMS. Additionally, the expressions of BDNF, SYP and NR2B were significantly increased via magnetic stimulation. The results suggest that rTMS considerably increases the expressions of BDNF, postsynaptic protein NR2B and presynaptic protein SYP, and thereby significantly enhances the synaptic plasticity and spatial cognition in normal animals. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Gastrin-releasing peptide facilitates glutamatergic transmission in the hippocampus and effectively prevents vascular dementia induced cognitive and synaptic plasticity deficits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Jiajia; Yao, Yang; Wang, Ling; Yang, Chunxiao; Wang, Faqi; Guo, Jie; Wang, Zhiyun; Yang, Zhuo; Ming, Dong

    2017-01-01

    Neuronal gastrin-releasing peptide (GRP) has been proved to be an important neuromodulator in the brain and involved in a variety of neurological diseases. Whether GRP could attenuate cognition impairment induced by vascular dementia (VD) in rats, and the mechanism of synaptic plasticity and GRP's action on synaptic efficiency are still poorly understood. In this study, we first investigated the effects of GRP on glutamatergic transmission with patch-clamp recording. We found that acute application of GRP enhanced the excitatory synaptic transmission in hippocampal CA1 neurons via GRPR in a presynaptic mechanism. Secondly, we examined whether exogenous GRP or its analogue neuromedin B (NMB) could prevent VD-induced cognitive deficits and the mechanism of synaptic plasticity. By using Morris water maze, long-term potentiation (LTP) recording, western blot assay and immunofluorescent staining, we verified for the first time that GRP or NMB substantially improved the spatial learning and memory abilities in VD rats, restored the impaired synaptic plasticity and was able to elevate the expression of synaptic proteins, synaptophysin (SYP) and CaMKII, which play pivotal roles in synaptic plasticity. These results suggest that the facilitatory effects of GRP on glutamate release may contribute to its long-term action on synaptic efficacy which is essential in cognitive function. Our findings present a new entry point for a better understanding of physiological function of GRP and raise the possibility that GRPR agonists might ameliorate cognitive deficits associated with neurological diseases. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Phasic Dopamine Modifies Sensory-Driven Output of Striatal Neurons through Synaptic Plasticity.

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    Wieland, Sebastian; Schindler, Sebastian; Huber, Cathrin; Köhr, Georg; Oswald, Manfred J; Kelsch, Wolfgang

    2015-07-08

    Animals are facing a complex sensory world in which only few stimuli are relevant to guide behavior. Value has to be assigned to relevant stimuli such as odors to select them over concurring information. Phasic dopamine is involved in the value assignment to stimuli in the ventral striatum. The underlying cellular mechanisms are incompletely understood. In striatal projection neurons of the ventral striatum in adult mice, we therefore examined the features and dynamics of phasic dopamine-induced synaptic plasticity and how this plasticity may modify the striatal output. Phasic dopamine is predicted to tag inputs that occur in temporal proximity. Indeed, we observed D1 receptor-dependent synaptic potentiation only when odor-like bursts and optogenetically evoked phasic dopamine release were paired within a time window of synaptic potentiation persisted after the phasic dopamine signal had ceased, but gradually reversed when odor-like bursts continued to be presented. The synaptic plasticity depended on the sensory input rate and was input specific. Importantly, synaptic plasticity amplified the firing response to a given olfactory input as the dendritic integration and the firing threshold remained unchanged during synaptic potentiation. Thus, phasic dopamine-induced synaptic plasticity can change information transfer through dynamic increases of the output of striatal projection neurons to specific sensory inputs. This plasticity may provide a neural substrate for dynamic value assignment in the striatum. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/359946-11$15.00/0.

  7. Role of F3/contactin expression profile in synaptic plasticity and memory in aged mice.

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    Puzzo, Daniela; Bizzoca, Antonella; Loreto, Carla; Guida, Chiara A; Gulisano, Walter; Frasca, Giuseppina; Bellomo, Maria; Castorina, Sergio; Gennarini, Gianfranco; Palmeri, Agostino

    2015-04-01

    We have recently shown that overexpression of the F3/contactin adhesive glycoprotein (also known as Contactin-1) promotes neurogenesis in adult hippocampus, which correlates with improved synaptic plasticity and memory. Because F3/contactin levels physiologically decrease with age, here, we aim at investigating whether its overexpression might counteract the cognitive decline in aged animals. For this we use 20- to 24-month-old TAG/F3 transgenic mice in which F3/contactin overexpression is driven by regulatory sequences from the gene encoding the transient axonal glycoprotein TAG-1 throughout development. We show that aged TAG/F3 mice display improved hippocampal long-term potentiation and memory compared with wild-type littermates. The same mice undergo a decrease of neuronal apoptosis at the hippocampal level, which correlated to a decrease of active caspase-3; by contrast, procaspase-3 and Bax as well as the anti-apoptotic and plasticity-related pathway BDNF/CREB/Bcl-2 were rather increased. Interestingly, amyloid-precursor protein processing was shifted toward sAPPα generation, with a decrease of sAPPβ and amyloid-beta levels. Our data confirm that F3/contactin plays a role in hippocampal synaptic plasticity and memory also in aged mice, suggesting that it acts on molecular pathways related to apoptosis and amyloid-beta production. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Learning, memory and synaptic plasticity in hippocampus in rats exposed to sevoflurane.

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    Xiao, Hongyan; Liu, Bing; Chen, Yali; Zhang, Jun

    2016-02-01

    Developmental exposure to volatile anesthetics has been associated with cognitive deficits at adulthood. Rodent studies have revealed impairments in performance in learning tasks involving the hippocampus. However, how the duration of anesthesia exposure impact on hippocampal synaptic plasticity, learning, and memory is as yet not fully elucidated. On postnatal day 7(P7), rat pups were divided into 3 groups: control group (n=30), 3% sevoflurane treatment for 1h (Sev 1h group, n=30) and 3% sevoflurane treatment for 6h (Sev 6h group, n=28). Following anesthesia, synaptic vesicle-associated proteins and dendrite spine density and synapse ultrastructure were measured using western blotting, Golgi staining, and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) on P21. In addition, the effects of sevoflurane treatment on long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD), two molecular correlates of memory, were studied in CA1 subfields of the hippocampus, using electrophysiological recordings of field potentials in hippocampal slices on P35-42. Rats' neurocognitive performance was assessed at 2 months of age, using the Morris water maze and novel-object recognition tasks. Our results showed that neonatal exposure to 3% sevoflurane for 6h results in reduced spine density of apical dendrites along with elevated expression of synaptic vesicle-associated proteins (SNAP-25 and syntaxin), and synaptic ultrastructure damage in the hippocampus. The electrophysiological evidence indicated that hippocampal LTP, but not LTD, was inhibited and that learning and memory performance were impaired in two behavioral tasks in the Sev 6h group. In contrast, lesser structural and functional damage in the hippocampus was observed in the Sev 1h group. Our data showed that 6-h exposure of the developing brain to 3% sevoflurane could result in synaptic plasticity impairment in the hippocampus and spatial and nonspatial hippocampal-dependent learning and memory deficits. In contrast, shorter

  9. Deletion of the amyloid precursor-like protein 1 (APLP1) enhances excitatory synaptic transmission, reduces network inhibition but does not impair synaptic plasticity in the mouse dentate gyrus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vnencak, Matej; Paul, Mandy H; Hick, Meike; Schwarzacher, Stephan W; Del Turco, Domenico; Müller, Ulrike C; Deller, Thomas; Jedlicka, Peter

    2015-08-01

    Amyloid precursor-like protein 1 (APLP1) is a transmembrane synaptic protein belonging to the amyloid precursor protein (APP) gene family. Although the role of this gene family-in particular of APP-has been intensely studied in the context of Alzheimer's disease, the physiological roles of its family members remain poorly understood. In particular, the function of APLP1, which is predominantly expressed in the nervous system, has remained enigmatic. Since APP has been implicated in synaptic plasticity, we wondered whether APLP1 could play a similar role. First, using in situ hybridization and laser microdissection combined with reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction (PCR) we observed that Aplp1 mRNA is highly expressed in dentate granule cells. Having this examined, we studied synaptic plasticity at the perforant path-granule cell synapses in the dentate gyrus of APLP1-deficient mice in vivo. Analysis of field excitatory postsynaptic potentials evoked by stimulation of perforant path fibers revealed increased excitatory transmission in APLP1-deficient mice. Moreover, we observed decreased paired-pulse inhibition of population spikes indicating a decrease in network inhibition upon deletion of APLP1. In contrast, short-term presynaptic plasticity (STP) as well as long-term synaptic plasticity (LTP) was unchanged in the absence of APLP1. Based on these results we conclude that APLP1 deficiency on its own does not lead to defects in synaptic plasticity, but affects synaptic transmission and network inhibition in the dentate gyrus. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  10. A 2D Material based Gate Tunable Memristive Device for Emulating Modulatory Input-dependent Hetero-synaptic Plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Xiaodong; Tian, He; Xie, Yujun; Kostelec, Andrew; Zhao, Huan; Cha, Judy J.; Tice, Jesse; Wang, Han

    Modulatory input-dependent plasticity is a well-known type of hetero-synaptic response where the release of neuromodulators can alter the efficacy of neurotransmission in a nearby chemical synapse. Solid-state devices that can mimic such phenomenon are desirable for enhancing the functionality and reconfigurability of neuromorphic electronics. In this work, we demonstrated a tunable artificial synaptic device concept based on the properties of graphene and tin oxide that can mimic the modulatory input-dependent plasticity. By using graphene as the contact electrode, a third electrode terminal can be used to modulate the conductive filament formation in the vertical tin oxide based resistive memory device. The resulting synaptic characteristics of this device, in terms of the profile of synaptic weight change and the spike-timing-dependent-plasticity, is tunable with the bias at the modulating terminal. Furthermore, the synaptic response can be reconfigured between excitatory and inhibitory modes by this modulating bias. The operation mechanism of the device is studied with combined experimental and theoretical analysis. The device is attractive for application in neuromorphic electronics. This work is supported by ARO and NG-ION2 at USC.

  11. Nicotine Significantly Improves Chronic Stress-Induced Impairments of Cognition and Synaptic Plasticity in Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shang, Xueliang; Shang, Yingchun; Fu, Jingxuan; Zhang, Tao

    2017-08-01

    The aim of this study was to examine if nicotine was able to improve cognition deficits in a mouse model of chronic mild stress. Twenty-four male C57BL/6 mice were divided into three groups: control, stress, and stress with nicotine treatment. The animal model was established by combining chronic unpredictable mild stress (CUMS) and isolated feeding. Mice were exposed to CUMS continued for 28 days, while nicotine (0.2 mg/kg) was also administrated for 28 days. Weight and sucrose consumption were measured during model establishing period. The anxiety and behavioral despair were analyzed using the forced swim test (FST) and open-field test (OFT). Spatial cognition was evaluated using Morris water maze (MWM) test. Following behavioral assessment, both long-term potentiation (LTP) and depotentiation (DEP) were recorded in the hippocampal dentate gyrus (DG) region. Both synaptic and Notch1 proteins were measured by Western. Nicotine increased stressed mouse's sucrose consumption. The MWM test showed that spatial learning and reversal learning in stressed animals were remarkably affected relative to controls, whereas nicotine partially rescued cognitive functions. Additionally, nicotine considerably alleviated the level of anxiety and the degree of behavioral despair in stressed mice. It effectively mitigated the depression-induced impairment of hippocampal synaptic plasticity, in which both the LTP and DEP were significantly inhibited in stressed mice. Moreover, nicotine enhanced the expression of synaptic and Notch1 proteins in stressed animals. The results suggest that nicotine ameliorates the depression-like symptoms and improves the hippocampal synaptic plasticity closely associated with activating transmembrane ion channel receptors and Notch signaling components. Graphical Abstract ᅟ.

  12. TRIP8b independent trafficking and plasticity of adult cortical pre-synaptic HCN1 channels

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    Huang, Zhuo; Lujan, Rafael; Martinez-Hernandez, Jose; Lewis, Alan S.; Chetkovich, Dane M.; Shah, Mala M.

    2014-01-01

    Hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN) channels are subthreshold activated voltage-gated ion channels. In the cortex, these channels are predominantly expressed in dendrites where they significantly modify dendritic intrinsic excitability as well synaptic potential shapes and integration. HCN channel trafficking to dendrites is regulated by the protein, TRIP8b. Additionally, altered TRIP8b expression may be one mechanism underlying seizure-induced dendritic HCN channel plasticity. HCN channels, though, are also located in certain mature cortical synaptic terminals, where they play a vital role in modulating synaptic transmission. In this study, using electrophysiological recordings as well as electron microscopy we show that pre-synaptic, but not dendritic, cortical HCN channel expression and function is comparable in adult TRIP8b null mice and wildtype littermates. We further investigated if pre-synaptic HCN channels undergo seizure-dependent plasticity. We found that, like dendritic channels, wildtype pre-synaptic HCN channel function was persistently decreased following induction of kainic acid-induced seizures. Since TRIP8b does not affect pre-synaptic HCN subunit trafficking, seizure dependent plasticity of these cortical HCN channels is not conditional upon TRIP8b. Our results, thus, suggest that the molecular mechanisms underlying HCN subunit targeting, expression and plasticity in adult neurons is compartment selective, providing a means by which pre- and post-synaptic processes that are critically dependent upon HCN channel function may be distinctly influenced. PMID:23077068

  13. Regulation of synaptic plasticity and cognition by SUMO in normal physiology and Alzheimer's disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Linda; Dale, Elena; Staniszewski, Agnes; Zhang, Hong; Saeed, Faisal; Sakurai, Mikako; Fa', Mauro; Orozco, Ian; Michelassi, Francesco; Akpan, Nsikan; Lehrer, Helena; Arancio, Ottavio

    2014-01-01

    Learning and memory and the underlying cellular correlate, long-term synaptic plasticity, involve regulation by posttranslational modifications (PTMs). Here we demonstrate that conjugation with the small ubiquitin-like modifier (SUMO) is a novel PTM required for normal synaptic and cognitive functioning. Acute inhibition of SUMOylation impairs long-term potentiation (LTP) and hippocampal-dependent learning. Since Alzheimer's disease (AD) prominently features both synaptic and PTM dysregulation, we investigated SUMOylation under pathology induced by amyloid-β (Aβ), a primary neurotoxic molecule implicated in AD. We observed that SUMOylation is dysregulated in both human AD brain tissue and the Tg2576 transgenic AD mouse model. While neuronal activation normally induced upregulation of SUMOylation, this effect was impaired by Aβ42 oligomers. However, supplementing SUMOylation via transduction of its conjugating enzyme, Ubc9, rescued Aβ-induced deficits in LTP and hippocampal-dependent learning and memory. Our data establish SUMO as a novel regulator of LTP and hippocampal-dependent cognition and additionally implicate SUMOylation impairments in AD pathogenesis. PMID:25448527

  14. Less means more: The magnitude of synaptic plasticity along the hippocampal dorso-ventral axis is inversely related to the expression levels of plasticity-related neurotransmitter receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dubovyk, Valentyna; Manahan-Vaughan, Denise

    2018-02-01

    The dorsoventral axis of the hippocampus exhibits functional differentiations with regard to (spatial Vs emotional) learning and information retention (rapid encoding Vs long-term storage), as well as its sensitivity to neuromodulation and information received from extrahippocampal structures. The mechanisms that underlie these differentiations remain unclear. Here, we explored neurotransmitter receptor expression along the dorsoventral hippocampal axis and compared hippocampal synaptic plasticity in the CA1 region of the dorsal (DH), intermediate (IH) and ventral hippocampi (VH). We observed a very distinct gradient of expression of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor GluN2B subunit in the Stratum radiatum (DH IH > VH). Neurotransmitter release probability was lowest in DH. Surprisingly, identical afferent stimulation conditions resulted in hippocampal synaptic plasticity that was the most robust in the DH, compared with IH and VH. These data suggest that differences in hippocampal information processing and synaptic plasticity along the dorsoventral axis may relate to specific differences in the expression of plasticity-related neurotransmitter receptors. This gradient may support the fine-tuning and specificity of hippocampal synaptic encoding. © 2017 The Authors. Hippocampus Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. AMPA Receptor Phosphorylation and Synaptic Colocalization on Motor Neurons Drive Maladaptive Plasticity below Complete Spinal Cord Injury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stuck, Ellen D.; Irvine, Karen-Amanda; Bresnahan, Jacqueline C.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Clinical spinal cord injury (SCI) is accompanied by comorbid peripheral injury in 47% of patients. Human and animal modeling data have shown that painful peripheral injuries undermine long-term recovery of locomotion through unknown mechanisms. Peripheral nociceptive stimuli induce maladaptive synaptic plasticity in dorsal horn sensory systems through AMPA receptor (AMPAR) phosphorylation and trafficking to synapses. Here we test whether ventral horn motor neurons in rats demonstrate similar experience-dependent maladaptive plasticity below a complete SCI in vivo. Quantitative biochemistry demonstrated that intermittent nociceptive stimulation (INS) rapidly and selectively increases AMPAR subunit GluA1 serine 831 phosphorylation and localization to synapses in the injured spinal cord, while reducing synaptic GluA2. These changes predict motor dysfunction in the absence of cell death signaling, suggesting an opportunity for therapeutic reversal. Automated confocal time-course analysis of lumbar ventral horn motor neurons confirmed a time-dependent increase in synaptic GluA1 with concurrent decrease in synaptic GluA2. Optical fractionation of neuronal plasma membranes revealed GluA2 removal from extrasynaptic sites on motor neurons early after INS followed by removal from synapses 2 h later. As GluA2-lacking AMPARs are canonical calcium-permeable AMPARs (CP-AMPARs), their stimulus- and time-dependent insertion provides a therapeutic target for limiting calcium-dependent dynamic maladaptive plasticity after SCI. Confirming this, a selective CP-AMPAR antagonist protected against INS-induced maladaptive spinal plasticity, restoring adaptive motor responses on a sensorimotor spinal training task. These findings highlight the critical involvement of AMPARs in experience-dependent spinal cord plasticity after injury and provide a pharmacologically targetable synaptic mechanism by which early postinjury experience shapes motor plasticity. PMID:26668821

  16. AMPA Receptor Phosphorylation and Synaptic Colocalization on Motor Neurons Drive Maladaptive Plasticity below Complete Spinal Cord Injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huie, J Russell; Stuck, Ellen D; Lee, Kuan H; Irvine, Karen-Amanda; Beattie, Michael S; Bresnahan, Jacqueline C; Grau, James W; Ferguson, Adam R

    2015-01-01

    Clinical spinal cord injury (SCI) is accompanied by comorbid peripheral injury in 47% of patients. Human and animal modeling data have shown that painful peripheral injuries undermine long-term recovery of locomotion through unknown mechanisms. Peripheral nociceptive stimuli induce maladaptive synaptic plasticity in dorsal horn sensory systems through AMPA receptor (AMPAR) phosphorylation and trafficking to synapses. Here we test whether ventral horn motor neurons in rats demonstrate similar experience-dependent maladaptive plasticity below a complete SCI in vivo. Quantitative biochemistry demonstrated that intermittent nociceptive stimulation (INS) rapidly and selectively increases AMPAR subunit GluA1 serine 831 phosphorylation and localization to synapses in the injured spinal cord, while reducing synaptic GluA2. These changes predict motor dysfunction in the absence of cell death signaling, suggesting an opportunity for therapeutic reversal. Automated confocal time-course analysis of lumbar ventral horn motor neurons confirmed a time-dependent increase in synaptic GluA1 with concurrent decrease in synaptic GluA2. Optical fractionation of neuronal plasma membranes revealed GluA2 removal from extrasynaptic sites on motor neurons early after INS followed by removal from synapses 2 h later. As GluA2-lacking AMPARs are canonical calcium-permeable AMPARs (CP-AMPARs), their stimulus- and time-dependent insertion provides a therapeutic target for limiting calcium-dependent dynamic maladaptive plasticity after SCI. Confirming this, a selective CP-AMPAR antagonist protected against INS-induced maladaptive spinal plasticity, restoring adaptive motor responses on a sensorimotor spinal training task. These findings highlight the critical involvement of AMPARs in experience-dependent spinal cord plasticity after injury and provide a pharmacologically targetable synaptic mechanism by which early postinjury experience shapes motor plasticity.

  17. The Formation of Multi-synaptic Connections by the Interaction of Synaptic and Structural Plasticity and Their Functional Consequences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fauth, Michael; Wörgötter, Florentin; Tetzlaff, Christian

    2015-01-01

    Cortical connectivity emerges from the permanent interaction between neuronal activity and synaptic as well as structural plasticity. An important experimentally observed feature of this connectivity is the distribution of the number of synapses from one neuron to another, which has been measured in several cortical layers. All of these distributions are bimodal with one peak at zero and a second one at a small number (3–8) of synapses. In this study, using a probabilistic model of structural plasticity, which depends on the synaptic weights, we explore how these distributions can emerge and which functional consequences they have. We find that bimodal distributions arise generically from the interaction of structural plasticity with synaptic plasticity rules that fulfill the following biological realistic constraints: First, the synaptic weights have to grow with the postsynaptic activity. Second, this growth curve and/or the input-output relation of the postsynaptic neuron have to change sub-linearly (negative curvature). As most neurons show such input-output-relations, these constraints can be fulfilled by many biological reasonable systems. Given such a system, we show that the different activities, which can explain the layer-specific distributions, correspond to experimentally observed activities. Considering these activities as working point of the system and varying the pre- or postsynaptic stimulation reveals a hysteresis in the number of synapses. As a consequence of this, the connectivity between two neurons can be controlled by activity but is also safeguarded against overly fast changes. These results indicate that the complex dynamics between activity and plasticity will, already between a pair of neurons, induce a variety of possible stable synaptic distributions, which could support memory mechanisms. PMID:25590330

  18. Day differences in the cortisol awakening response predict day differences in synaptic plasticity in the brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clow, Angela; Law, Robin; Evans, Phil; Vallence, Ann-Maree; Hodyl, Nicolette A; Goldsworthy, Mitchell R; Rothwell, John R; Ridding, Michael C

    2014-05-01

    The cortisol awakening response (CAR) is the most prominent, dynamic and variable part of the circadian pattern of cortisol secretion. Despite this, its precise purpose is unknown. Aberrant patterns of the CAR are associated with impaired physical and mental health and reduced cognitive function, suggesting that it may have a pervasive role or roles. It has been suggested that the CAR primes the brain for the expected demands of the day but the mechanisms underlying this process are unknown. We examined temporal covariation of the CAR and rapid transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS)-induced long term depression (LTD)-like responses in the motor cortex. Plasticity was evaluated across 180 measures from five time points on four sessions across nine healthy researcher participants, mean age 25 ± 2.5 years. Plasticity estimates were obtained in the afternoon after measurement of the CAR on 4 days, at least 3 days apart. As both CAR magnitude and rTMS-induced responses are variable across days, we hypothesized that days with larger than individual average CARs would be associated with a greater than individual average plasticity response. This was confirmed by mixed regression modelling where variation in the CAR predicted variation in rTMS-induced responses (df: 1, 148.24; F: 10.41; p = 0.002). As the magnitude of the CAR is regulated by the "master" circadian CLOCK, and synaptic plasticity is known to be modulated by peripheral "slave" CLOCK genes, we suggest that the CAR may be a mediator between the master and peripheral circadian systems to entrain daily levels of synaptic plasticity.

  19. Chronic fluoxetine administration enhances synaptic plasticity and increases functional dynamics in hippocampal CA3-CA1 synapses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popova, Dina; Castrén, Eero; Taira, Tomi

    2017-11-01

    Recent studies demonstrate that chronic administration of the widely used antidepressant fluoxetine (FLX) promotes neurogenesis, synaptogenesis and synaptic plasticity in the adult hippocampus, cortex and amygdala. However, the mechanisms underlying these effects and how are they related to the clinical antidepressant efficacy are still poorly understood. We show here that chronic FLX administration decreases hippocampus-associated neophobia in naïve mice. In parallel, electrophysiological recordings in hippocampal CA3-CA1 circuitry revealed that the FLX treatment resulted in increased short- and long-term plasticity likely attributed to changes in presynaptic function. These changes were accompanied by enhancement in the expression of proteins related to vesicular trafficking and release, namely synaptophysin, synaptotagmin 1, MUNC 18 and syntaxin 1. Thus, chronic FLX administration is associated with enhanced synaptic dynamics atypical of mature CA1 synapses, elevated hippocampal plasticity, improved hippocampus-dependent behavior as well as altered expression of synaptic proteins regulating neurotransmitter trafficking and release. The results support the idea that antidepressants can promote neuronal plasticity and show that they can increase the functional dynamic range and information processing in synaptic circuitries. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Resistance to ethanol sensitization is associated with a loss of synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coune, F; Silvestre de Ferron, B; González-Marín, M C; Antol, J; Naassila, M; Pierrefiche, O

    2017-02-01

    Behavioral sensitization to repeated ethanol (EtOH) exposure induces an increase in locomotor activity in mice. However, not all animals express such sensitization. Although the literature indicated that the hippocampus may play a role in EtOH sensitization, it is not known whether behavioral sensitization to EtOH is associated with preferential changes in bidirectional synaptic plasticity, i.e., LTP and LTD, two markers of learning capabilities that have also been shown to be involved in addictive behavior. In the present study, we examined whether the vulnerability to develop and express behavioral sensitization to EtOH is associated with altered bidirectional synaptic plasticity in the CA1 area of the dorsal hippocampus. For this purpose, we analyzed both LTP and LTD in resistant and sensitized mice during the expression phase, i.e., 7 days after 10 days of repeated EtOH i.p. administration. We found that resistant mice showed a lack of LTD without changes in LTP. The lack of LTD was associated with an increase in GluN2A protein level and was not due to an altered level of neuronal activity, since no difference was observed between the number of c-FOS positive neurons in sensitized and resistant mice. Given that both types of synaptic plasticity signals may have distinct roles in specific learning and behaviors, our results suggest that resistant mice could exhibit different phenotypes in terms of learning/memory and addictive behaviors compared to sensitized ones. Synapse 71:e21899, 2017. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srinivasa, Narayan; Cho, Youngkwan

    2014-01-01

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

  2. Unsupervised Discrimination of Patterns in Spiking Neural Networks with Excitatory and Inhibitory Synaptic Plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Narayan eSrinivasa

    2014-12-01

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

  3. Synaptic plasticity in a recurrent neural network for versatile and adaptive behaviors of a walking robot

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Grinke, Eduard; Tetzlaff, Christian; Wörgötter, Florentin

    2015-01-01

    dynamics, plasticity, sensory feedback, and biomechanics. Generating such versatile and adaptive behaviors for a many degrees-of-freedom (DOFs) walking robot is a challenging task. Thus, in this study, we present a bio-inspired approach to solve this task. Specifically, the approach combines neural...... mechanisms with plasticity, exteroceptive sensory feedback, and biomechanics. The neural mechanisms consist of adaptive neural sensory processing and modular neural locomotion control. The sensory processing is based on a small recurrent neural network consisting of two fully connected neurons. Online...... correlation-based learning with synaptic scaling is applied to adequately change the connections of the network. By doing so, we can effectively exploit neural dynamics (i.e., hysteresis effects and single attractors) in the network to generate different turning angles with short-term memory for a walking...

  4. Tunicamycin impairs olfactory learning and synaptic plasticity in the olfactory bulb.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tong, Jia; Okutani, Fumino; Murata, Yoshihiro; Taniguchi, Mutsuo; Namba, Toshiharu; Wang, Yu-Jie; Kaba, Hideto

    2017-03-06

    Tunicamycin (TM) induces endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress and inhibits N-glycosylation in cells. ER stress is associated with neuronal death in neurodegenerative disorders, such as Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease, and most patients complain of the impairment of olfactory recognition. Here we examined the effects of TM on aversive olfactory learning and the underlying synaptic plasticity in the main olfactory bulb (MOB). Behavioral experiments demonstrated that the intrabulbar infusion of TM disabled aversive olfactory learning without affecting short-term memory. Histological analyses revealed that TM infusion upregulated C/EBP homologous protein (CHOP), a marker of ER stress, in the mitral and granule cell layers of MOB. Electrophysiological data indicated that TM inhibited tetanus-induced long-term potentiation (LTP) at the dendrodendritic excitatory synapse from mitral to granule cells. A low dose of TM (250nM) abolished the late phase of LTP, and a high dose (1μM) inhibited the early and late phases of LTP. Further, high-dose, but not low-dose, TM reduced the paired-pulse facilitation ratio, suggesting that the inhibitory effects of TM on LTP are partially mediated through the presynaptic machinery. Thus, our results support the hypothesis that TM-induced ER stress impairs olfactory learning by inhibiting synaptic plasticity via presynaptic and postsynaptic mechanisms in MOB. Copyright © 2017 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Robustness of learning that is based on covariance-driven synaptic plasticity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yonatan Loewenstein

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available It is widely believed that learning is due, at least in part, to long-lasting modifications of the strengths of synapses in the brain. Theoretical studies have shown that a family of synaptic plasticity rules, in which synaptic changes are driven by covariance, is particularly useful for many forms of learning, including associative memory, gradient estimation, and operant conditioning. Covariance-based plasticity is inherently sensitive. Even a slight mistuning of the parameters of a covariance-based plasticity rule is likely to result in substantial changes in synaptic efficacies. Therefore, the biological relevance of covariance-based plasticity models is questionable. Here, we study the effects of mistuning parameters of the plasticity rule in a decision making model in which synaptic plasticity is driven by the covariance of reward and neural activity. An exact covariance plasticity rule yields Herrnstein's matching law. We show that although the effect of slight mistuning of the plasticity rule on the synaptic efficacies is large, the behavioral effect is small. Thus, matching behavior is robust to mistuning of the parameters of the covariance-based plasticity rule. Furthermore, the mistuned covariance rule results in undermatching, which is consistent with experimentally observed behavior. These results substantiate the hypothesis that approximate covariance-based synaptic plasticity underlies operant conditioning. However, we show that the mistuning of the mean subtraction makes behavior sensitive to the mistuning of the properties of the decision making network. Thus, there is a tradeoff between the robustness of matching behavior to changes in the plasticity rule and its robustness to changes in the properties of the decision making network.

  6. ERK pathway activation bidirectionally affects visual recognition memory and synaptic plasticity in the perirhinal cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Davide eSilingardi

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available ERK 1,2 pathway mediates experience-dependent gene transcription in neurons and several studies have identified its pivotal role in experience-dependent synaptic plasticity and in forms of long term memory involving hippocampus, amygdala or striatum. The perirhinal cortex (PRHC plays an essential role in familiarity-based object recognition memory. It is still unknown whether ERK activation in PRHC is necessary for recognition memory consolidation. Most important, it is unknown whether by modulating the gain of the ERK pathway it is possible to bidirectionally affect visual recognition memory and PRHC synaptic plasticity.We have first pharmacologically blocked ERK activation in the PRHC of adult mice and found that this was sufficient to impair long term recognition memory in a familiarity-based task, the Object Recognition Task (ORT. We have then tested performance in the ORT in Ras-GRF1 knock-out (KO mice, which exhibit a reduced activation of ERK by neuronal activity, and in ERK1 KO mice, which have an increased activation of ERK2 and exhibit enhanced striatal plasticity and striatal mediated memory. We found that Ras-GRF1 KO mice have normal short-term memory but display a long term memory deficit; memory reconsolidation is also impaired. On the contrary, ERK1 KO mice exhibit a better performance than WT mice at 72 hour retention interval, suggesting a longer lasting recognition memory. In parallel with behavioural data, LTD was strongly reduced and LTP was significantly smaller in PRHC slices from Ras-GRF1 KO than in WT mice while enhanced LTP and LTD were found in PRHC slices from ERK1 KO mice.

  7. Linking Network Activity to Synaptic Plasticity during Sleep: Hypotheses and Recent Data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Puentes-Mestril, Carlos; Aton, Sara J

    2017-01-01

    Research findings over the past two decades have supported a link between sleep states and synaptic plasticity. Numerous mechanistic hypotheses have been put forth to explain this relationship. For example, multiple studies have shown structural alterations to synapses (including changes in synaptic volume, spine density, and receptor composition) indicative of synaptic weakening after a period of sleep. Direct measures of neuronal activity and synaptic strength support the idea that a period of sleep can reduce synaptic strength. This has led to the synaptic homeostasis hypothesis (SHY), which asserts that during slow wave sleep, synapses are downscaled throughout the brain to counteract net strengthening of network synapses during waking experience (e.g., during learning). However, neither the cellular mechanisms mediating these synaptic changes, nor the sleep-dependent activity changes driving those cellular events are well-defined. Here we discuss potential cellular and network dynamic mechanisms which could underlie reductions in synaptic strength during sleep. We also discuss recent findings demonstrating circuit-specific synaptic strengthening (rather than weakening) during sleep. Based on these data, we explore the hypothetical role of sleep-associated network activity patterns in driving synaptic strengthening. We propose an alternative to SHY-namely that depending on experience during prior wake, a variety of plasticity mechanisms may operate in the brain during sleep. We conclude that either synaptic strengthening or synaptic weakening can occur across sleep, depending on changes to specific neural circuits (such as gene expression and protein translation) induced by experiences in wake. Clarifying the mechanisms underlying these different forms of sleep-dependent plasticity will significantly advance our understanding of how sleep benefits various cognitive functions.

  8. Sex-Dependent Regulation of Aromatase-Mediated Synaptic Plasticity in the Basolateral Amygdala.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bender, Roland A; Zhou, Lepu; Vierk, Ricardo; Brandt, Nicola; Keller, Alexander; Gee, Christine E; Schäfer, Michael K E; Rune, Gabriele M

    2017-02-08

    The basolateral amygdala (BLA) integrates sensory input from cortical and subcortical regions, a function that requires marked synaptic plasticity. Here we provide evidence that cytochrome P450 aromatase (AROM), the enzyme converting testosterone to 17β-estradiol (E2), contributes to the regulation of this plasticity in a sex-specific manner. We show that AROM is expressed in the BLA, particularly in the basolateral nucleus (BL), in male and female rodents. Systemic administration of the AROM inhibitor letrozole reduced spine synapse density in the BL of adult female mice but not in the BL of male mice. Similarly, in organotypic corticoamygdalar slice cultures from immature rats, treatment with letrozole significantly reduced spine synapses in the BL only in cultures derived from females. In addition, letrozole sex-specifically altered synaptic properties in the BL: in acute slices from juvenile (prepubertal) female rats, wash-in of letrozole virtually abolished long-term potentiation (LTP), whereas it did not prevent the generation of LTP in the slices from males. Together, these data indicate that neuron-derived E2 modulates synaptic plasticity in rodent BLA sex-dependently. As protein expression levels of AROM, estrogen and androgen receptors did not differ between males and females and were not sex-specifically altered by letrozole, the findings suggest sex-specific mechanisms of E2 signaling. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The basolateral amygdala (BLA) is a key structure of the fear circuit. This research reveals a sexually dimorphic regulation of synaptic plasticity in the BLA involving neuronal aromatase, which produces the neurosteroid 17β-estradiol (E2). As male and female neurons in rodent BLA responded differently to aromatase inhibition both in vivo and in vitro , our findings suggest that E2 signaling in BLA neurons is regulated sex-dependently, presumably via mechanisms that have been established during sexual determination. These findings could be

  9. Vortioxetine disinhibits pyramidal cell function and enhances synaptic plasticity in the rat hippocampus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dale, Elena; Zhang, Hong; Leiser, Steven C; Xiao, Yixin; Lu, Dunguo; Yang, Charles R; Plath, Niels; Sanchez, Connie

    2014-10-01

    Vortioxetine, a novel antidepressant with multimodal action, is a serotonin (5-HT)3, 5-HT7 and 5-HT1D receptor antagonist, a 5-HT1B receptor partial agonist, a 5-HT1A receptor agonist and a 5-HT transporter (SERT) inhibitor. Vortioxetine has been shown to improve cognitive performance in several preclinical rat models and in patients with major depressive disorder. Here we investigated the mechanistic basis for these effects by studying the effect of vortioxetine on synaptic transmission, long-term potentiation (LTP), a cellular correlate of learning and memory, and theta oscillations in the rat hippocampus and frontal cortex. Vortioxetine was found to prevent the 5-HT-induced increase in inhibitory post-synaptic potentials recorded from CA1 pyramidal cells, most likely by 5-HT3 receptor antagonism. Vortioxetine also enhanced LTP in the CA1 region of the hippocampus. Finally, vortioxetine increased fronto-cortical theta power during active wake in whole animal electroencephalographic recordings. In comparison, the selective SERT inhibitor escitalopram showed no effect on any of these measures. Taken together, our results indicate that vortioxetine can increase pyramidal cell output, which leads to enhanced synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus. Given the central role of the hippocampus in cognition, these findings may provide a cellular correlate to the observed preclinical and clinical cognition-enhancing effects of vortioxetine. © The Author(s) 2014.

  10. Modulation of Synaptic Plasticity by Exercise Training as a Basis for Ischemic Stroke Rehabilitation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nie, Jingjing; Yang, Xiaosu

    2017-01-01

    In recent years, rehabilitation of ischemic stroke draws more and more attention in the world, and has been linked to changes of synaptic plasticity. Exercise training improves motor function of ischemia as well as cognition which is associated with formation of learning and memory. The molecular basis of learning and memory might be synaptic plasticity. Research has therefore been conducted in an attempt to relate effects of exercise training to neuroprotection and neurogenesis adjacent to the ischemic injury brain. The present paper reviews the current literature addressing this question and discusses the possible mechanisms involved in modulation of synaptic plasticity by exercise training. This review shows the pathological process of synaptic dysfunction in ischemic roughly and then discusses the effects of exercise training on scaffold proteins and regulatory protein expression. The expression of scaffold proteins generally increased after training, but the effects on regulatory proteins were mixed. Moreover, the compositions of postsynaptic receptors were changed and the strength of synaptic transmission was enhanced after training. Finally, the recovery of cognition is critically associated with synaptic remodeling in an injured brain, and the remodeling occurs through a number of local regulations including mRNA translation, remodeling of cytoskeleton, and receptor trafficking into and out of the synapse. We do provide a comprehensive knowledge of synaptic plasticity enhancement obtained by exercise training in this review.

  11. Changes in the expression of collapsin response mediator protein-2 during synaptic plasticity in the mouse hippocampus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kadoyama, Keiichi; Matsuura, Kenji; Nakamura-Hirota, Tooru; Takano, Masaoki; Otani, Mieko; Matsuyama, Shogo

    2015-11-01

    We have previously reported that nicotine application to the adult mouse causing long-term potentiation-like facilitation in vivo in the hippocampus can serve as a model of synaptic plasticity. The present study clarifies the involvement of collapsin response mediator protein-2 (CRMP2) in synaptic plasticity. CRMP2 was detected in hippocampal neurons of adult mice. The levels of CRMP2 mRNA and protein were increased 2-24 hr and 4-24 hr, respectively, after application of nicotine (3 mg/kg, i.p.), finally returning to the basal level by 48 hr. Furthermore, the ratio of phosphorylated CRMP2 (pCRMP2) at Thr514 residue, an inactive form, to total CRMP2 levels was not changed during synaptic plasticity expressed by nicotine, indicating an enhanced level of non-pCRMP2. This increase of CRMP2 was inhibited by blockade of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) and required activation of both α4β2 and α7 nAChRs. Although the level of ubiquitinated CRMP2 was increased 8 hr after nicotine treatment, the ratio of ubiquitinated CRMP2 to total CRMP2 protein was similar for nicotine-treated and nontreated mice. This study demonstrates that the expression of CRMP2 increases in hippocampal neurons during synaptic plasticity and that the increment is due mainly to mRNA expression. We propose that CRMP2, particularly non-pCRMP2, could contribute to long-lasting synaptic plasticity. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  12. Short-term ionic plasticity at GABAergic synapses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph Valentino Raimondo

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Fast synaptic inhibition in the brain is mediated by the pre-synaptic release of the neurotransmitter γ-Aminobutyric acid (GABA and the post-synaptic activation of GABA-sensitive ionotropic receptors. As with excitatory synapses, it is being increasinly appreciated that a variety of plastic processes occur at inhibitory synapses, which operate over a range of timescales. Here we examine a form of activity-dependent plasticity that is somewhat unique to GABAergic transmission. This involves short-lasting changes to the ionic driving force for the postsynaptic receptors, a process referred to as short-term ionic plasticity. These changes are directly related to the history of activity at inhibitory synapses and are influenced by a variety of factors including the location of the synapse and the post-synaptic cell’s ion regulation mechanisms. We explore the processes underlying this form of plasticity, when and where it can occur, and how it is likely to impact network activity.

  13. Alterations of synaptic plasticity in aged rats: Evidence of functional and morphological studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiang, Qiong; Li, Xian-Hui; Fang, Xin-Xing; Jia, Jing; Ren, Jie; Dong, Yu-Chun; Ou-Yang, Cheng

    2017-12-22

    The aging-related disease and associated neurodegenerative complications, such as cognitive impairment, has received increasing attention. The aim of this study was to show changes in cognitive behavior and molecular related the synaptic plasticity in aged-induced cognitive deficits rats. We used novel object recognition testing and morphological staining as well as western blot to detect changes in cognitive behavior and molecular related the synaptic plasticity. The morphological changes of synaptic structure and number on hippocampal neurons and learning and memory deficits were shown during natural aging. Moreover, learning and memory improvement was associated with alterations of hippocampal synaptic plasticity-related proteins, such as SNAP-25, synaptophysin, snapsoin-1 and so on, which distributes to cognitive decline in natural aging. Our study provides more behavior and molecular evidence on relationship of cognitive deficits and aging.

  14. Dopamine Receptors Differentially Control Binge Alcohol Drinking-Mediated Synaptic Plasticity of the Core Nucleus Accumbens Direct and Indirect Pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ji, Xincai; Saha, Sucharita; Kolpakova, Jenya; Guildford, Melissa; Tapper, Andrew R; Martin, Gilles E

    2017-05-31

    Binge alcohol drinking, a behavior characterized by rapid repeated alcohol intake, is most prevalent in young adults and is a risk factor for excessive alcohol consumption and alcohol dependence. Although the alteration of synaptic plasticity is thought to contribute to this behavior, there is currently little evidence that this is the case. We used drinking in the dark (DID) as a model of binge alcohol drinking to assess its effects on spike timing-dependent plasticity (STDP) in medium spiny neurons (MSNs) of the core nucleus accumbens (NAc) by combining patch-clamp recordings with calcium imaging and optogenetics. After 2 weeks of daily alcohol binges, synaptic plasticity was profoundly altered. STDP in MSNs expressing dopamine D1 receptors shifted from spike-timing-dependent long-term depression (tLTD), the predominant form of plasticity in naive male mice, to spike-timing-dependent long-term potentiation (tLTP) in DID mice, an effect that was totally reversed in the presence of 4 μm SCH23390, a dopamine D1 receptor antagonist. In MSNs presumably expressing dopamine D2 receptors, tLTP, the main form of plasticity in naive mice, was inhibited in DID mice. Interestingly, 1 μm sulpiride, a D2 receptor antagonist, restored tLTP. Although we observed no alterations of AMPA and NMDA receptor properties, we found that the AMPA/NMDA ratio increased at cortical and amygdaloid inputs but not at hippocampal inputs. Also, DID effects on STDP were accompanied by lower dendritic calcium transients. These data suggest that the role of dopamine in mediating the effects of binge alcohol drinking on synaptic plasticity of NAc MSNs differs markedly whether these neurons belong to the direct or indirect pathways. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT We examined the relationship between binge alcohol drinking and spike timing-dependent plasticity in nucleus accumbens (NAc) neurons. We found that repeated drinking bouts modulate differently synaptic plasticity in medium spiny neurons of the

  15. Buyang Huanwu decoction facilitates neurorehabilitation through an improvement of synaptic plasticity in cerebral ischemic rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Ruihuan; Cai, Jun; Zhan, Lechang; Guo, Youhua; Huang, Run-Yue; Li, Xiong; Zhou, Mingchao; Xu, Dandan; Zhan, Jie; Chen, Hongxia

    2017-03-28

    Loss of neural function is a critical but unsolved issue after cerebral ischemia insult. Neuronal plasticity and remodeling are crucial for recovery of neural functions after brain injury. Buyang Huanwu decoction, which is a classic formula in traditional Chinese medicine, can positively alter synaptic plasticity. This study assessed the effects of Buyang Huanwu decoction in combination with physical exercise on neuronal plasticity in cerebral ischemic rats. Cerebral ischemic rats were administered Buyang Huanwu decoction and participated in physical exercise after the induction of a permanent middle cerebral artery occlusion. The neurobehavioral functions and infarct volumes were evaluated. The presynaptic (SYN), postsynaptic (GAP-43) and cytoskeletal (MAP-2) proteins in the coronal brain samples were evaluated by immunohistochemistry and western blot analyses. The ultrastructure of the neuronal synaptic junctions in the same region were analyzed using transmission electron microscopy. Combination treatment of Buyang Huanwu decoction and physical exercise ameliorated the neurobehavioral deficits (p synaptic ultrastructure. Buyang Huanwu decoction facilitated neurorehabilitation following a cerebral ischemia insult through an improvement in synaptic plasticity. Graphical abstract The Buyang Huanwu decoction (BYHWD) combined with physical exercise (PE) attenuates synaptic disruption and promotes synaptic plasticity following cerebral ischemia (stroke).

  16. Effects of Ethanol Exposure during Distinct Periods of Brain Development on Hippocampal Synaptic Plasticity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian R. Christie

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders occur when a mother drinks during pregnancy and can greatly influence synaptic plasticity and cognition in the offspring. In this study we determined whether there are periods during brain development that are more susceptible to the effects of ethanol exposure on hippocampal synaptic plasticity. In particular, we evaluated how the ability to elicit long-term potentiation (LTP in the hippocampal dentate gyrus (DG was affected in young adult rats that were exposed to ethanol during either the 1st, 2nd, or 3rd trimester equivalent. As expected, the effects of ethanol on young adult DG LTP were less severe when exposure was limited to a particular trimester equivalent when compared to exposure throughout gestation. In males, ethanol exposure during the 1st, 2nd or 3rd trimester equivalent did not significantly reduce LTP in the DG. In females, ethanol exposure during either the 1st or 2nd trimester equivalents did not impact LTP in early adulthood, but following exposure during the 3rd trimester equivalent alone, LTP was significantly increased in the female DG. These results further exemplify the disparate effects between the ability to elicit LTP in the male and female brain following perinatal ethanol exposure (PNEE.

  17. Stimulation of the Hippocampal POMC/MC4R Circuit Alleviates Synaptic Plasticity Impairment in an Alzheimer's Disease Model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shen, Yang; Tian, Min; Zheng, Yuqiong; Gong, Fei; Fu, Amy K Y; Ip, Nancy Y

    2016-11-08

    Hippocampal synaptic plasticity is modulated by neuropeptides, the disruption of which might contribute to cognitive deficits observed in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Although pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC)-derived neuropeptides and melanocortin 4 receptor (MC4R) are implicated in hippocampus-dependent synaptic plasticity, how the POMC/MC4R system functions in the hippocampus and its role in synaptic dysfunction in AD are largely unknown. Here, we mapped a functional POMC circuit in the mouse hippocampus, wherein POMC neurons in the cornu ammonis 3 (CA3) activate MC4R in the CA1. Suppression of hippocampal MC4R activity in the APP/PS1 transgenic mouse model of AD exacerbates long-term potentiation impairment, which is alleviated by the replenishment of hippocampal POMC/MC4R activity or activation of hippocampal MC4R-coupled Gs signaling. Importantly, MC4R activation rescues amyloid-β-induced synaptic dysfunction via a Gs/cyclic AMP (cAMP)/PKA/cAMP-response element binding protein (CREB)-dependent mechanism. Hence, disruption of this hippocampal POMC/MC4R circuit might contribute to synaptic dysfunction observed in AD, revealing a potential therapeutic target for the disease. Copyright © 2016 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Streptavidin-conjugated CdSe/ZnS quantum dots impaired synaptic plasticity and spatial memory process

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Xiaoyan; Tang, Mingliang; Li, Zhifeng; Zha, Yingying; Cheng, Guosheng; Yin, Shuting; Chen, Jutao; Ruan, Di-yun; Chen, Lin; Wang, Ming

    2013-04-01

    Studies reported that quantum dots (QDs), as a novel probe, demonstrated a promising future for in vivo imaging, but also showed potential toxicity. This study is mainly to investigate in vivo response in the central nervous system (CNS) after exposure to QDs in a rat model of synaptic plasticity and spatial memory. Adult rats were exposed to streptavidin-conjugated CdSe/ZnS QDs (Qdots 525, purchased from Molecular Probes Inc.) by intraperitoneal injection for 7 days, followed by behavioral, electrophysiological, and biochemical examinations. The electrophysiological results show that input/output ( I/ O) functions were increased, while the peak of paired-pulse reaction and long-term potentiation were decreased after QDs insult, indicating synaptic transmission was enhanced and synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus was impaired. Meanwhile, behavioral experiments provide the evidence that QDs could impair rats' spatial memory process. All the results present evidences of interference of synaptic transmission and plasticity in rat hippocampal dentate gyrus area by QDs insult and suggest potential adverse issues which should be considered in QDs applications.

  19. The BDNF Val66Met polymorphism enhances glutamatergic transmission but diminishes activity-dependent synaptic plasticity in the dorsolateral striatum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jing, Deqiang; Lee, Francis S; Ninan, Ipe

    2017-01-01

    The Val66Met polymorphism in the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) gene disrupts the activity-dependent release of BDNF, which might underlie its involvement in several neuropsychiatric disorders. Consistent with the potential role of regulated release of BDNF in synaptic functions, earlier studies have demonstrated that the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism impairs NMDA receptor-mediated synaptic transmission and plasticity in the hippocampus, the medial prefrontal cortex and the central amygdala. However, it is unknown whether the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism affects synapses in the dorsal striatum, which depends on cortical afferents for BDNF. Electrophysiological experiments revealed an enhanced glutamatergic transmission in the dorsolateral striatum (DLS) of knock-in mice containing the variant polymorphism (BDNF Met/Met ) compared to the wild-type (BDNF Val/Val ) mice. This increase in glutamatergic transmission is mediated by a potentiation in glutamate release and NMDA receptor transmission in the medium spiny neurons without any alterations in non-NMDA receptor-mediated transmission. We also observed an impairment of synaptic plasticity, both long-term potentiation and depression in the DLS neurons, in BDNF Met/Met mice. Thus, the BDNF Val66Met polymorphism exerts an increase in glutamatergic transmission but impairs synaptic plasticity in the dorsal striatum, which might play a role in its effect on neuropsychiatric symptoms. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'Ionotropic glutamate receptors'. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Streptavidin-conjugated CdSe/ZnS quantum dots impaired synaptic plasticity and spatial memory process

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gao Xiaoyan [Center for Molecular Neurobiology, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (Germany); Tang Mingliang [Suzhou Institute of Nano-Tech and Nano-Bionics, Chinese Academy of Sciences (China); Li Zhifeng; Zha Yingying [University of Science and Technology of China, CAS Key Laboratory of Brain Function and Disease, and School of Life Sciences (China); Cheng Guosheng [Suzhou Institute of Nano-Tech and Nano-Bionics, Chinese Academy of Sciences (China); Yin Shuting [Center for Molecular Neurobiology, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (Germany); Chen Jutao; Ruan Diyun; Chen Lin; Wang Ming, E-mail: wming@ustc.edu.cn [University of Science and Technology of China, CAS Key Laboratory of Brain Function and Disease, and School of Life Sciences (China)

    2013-04-15

    Studies reported that quantum dots (QDs), as a novel probe, demonstrated a promising future for in vivo imaging, but also showed potential toxicity. This study is mainly to investigate in vivo response in the central nervous system (CNS) after exposure to QDs in a rat model of synaptic plasticity and spatial memory. Adult rats were exposed to streptavidin-conjugated CdSe/ZnS QDs (Qdots 525, purchased from Molecular Probes Inc.) by intraperitoneal injection for 7 days, followed by behavioral, electrophysiological, and biochemical examinations. The electrophysiological results show that input/output (I/O) functions were increased, while the peak of paired-pulse reaction and long-term potentiation were decreased after QDs insult, indicating synaptic transmission was enhanced and synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus was impaired. Meanwhile, behavioral experiments provide the evidence that QDs could impair rats' spatial memory process. All the results present evidences of interference of synaptic transmission and plasticity in rat hippocampal dentate gyrus area by QDs insult and suggest potential adverse issues which should be considered in QDs applications.

  1. Activity-dependent synaptic plasticity modulates the critical phase of brain development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaudhury, Sraboni; Sharma, Vikram; Kumar, Vivek; Nag, Tapas C; Wadhwa, Shashi

    2016-04-01

    Plasticity or neuronal plasticity is a unique and adaptive feature of nervous system which allows neurons to reorganize their interactions in response to an intrinsic or extrinsic stimulation and shapes the formation and maintenance of a functional neuronal circuit. Synaptic plasticity is the most important form of neural plasticity and plays critical role during the development allowing the formation of precise neural connectivity via the process of pruning. In the sensory systems-auditory and visual, this process is heavily dependent on the external cues perceived during the development. Environmental enrichment paradigms in an activity-dependent manner result in early maturation of the synapses and more efficient trans-synaptic signaling or communication flow. This has been extensively observed in the avian auditory system. On the other hand, stimuli results in negative effect can cause alterations in the synaptic connectivity and strength resulting in various developmental brain disorders including autism, fragile X syndrome and rett syndrome. In this review we discuss the role of different forms of activity (spontaneous or environmental) during the development of the nervous system in modifying synaptic plasticity necessary for shaping the adult brain. Also, we try to explore various factors (molecular, genetic and epigenetic) involved in altering the synaptic plasticity in positive and negative way. Copyright © 2015 The Japanese Society of Child Neurology. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Loss of catecholaminergic neuromodulation of persistent forms of hippocampal synaptic plasticity with increasing age

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hannah Twarkowski

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Neuromodulation by means of the catecholaminergic system is a key component of motivation-driven learning and behaviorally modulated hippocampal synaptic plasticity. In particular, dopamine acting on D1/D5 receptors and noradrenaline acting on beta-adrenergic receptors exert a very potent regulation of forms of hippocampal synaptic plasticity that last for very long-periods of time (>24h, and occur in conjunction with novel spatial learning. Antagonism of these receptors not only prevents long-term potentiation (LTP and long-term depression (LTD, but prevents the memory of the spatial event that, under normal circumstances, leads to the perpetuation of these plasticity forms. Spatial learning behavior that normally comes easily to rats, such as object-place learning and spatial reference learning, becomes increasingly impaired with aging. Middle-aged animals display aging-related deficits of specific, but not all, components of spatial learning, and one possibility is that this initial manifestation of decrements in learning ability that become manifest in middle-age relate to changes in motivation, attention and/or the regulation by neuromodulatory systems of these behavioral states.Here, we compared the regulation by dopaminergic D1/D5 and beta-adrenergic receptors of persistent LTP in young (2-4 month old and middle-aged (8-14 month old rats. We observed in young rats, that weak potentiation that typically lasts for ca. 2h could be strengthened into persistent (>24h LTP by pharmacological activation of either D1/D5 or beta-adrenergic receptors. By contrast, no such facilitation occurred in middle-aged rats. This difference was not related to an ostensible learning deficit: a facilitation of weak potentiation into LTP by spatial learning was possible both in young and middle-aged rats. It was also not directly linked to deficits in LTP: strong afferent stimulation resulted in equivalent LTP in both age groups. We postulate that this change in

  3. Kek-6: A truncated-Trk-like receptor for Drosophila neurotrophin 2 regulates structural synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ulian-Benitez, Suzana; Bishop, Simon; Foldi, Istvan; Wentzell, Jill; Okenwa, Chinenye; Forero, Manuel G; Zhu, Bangfu; Moreira, Marta; Phizacklea, Mark; McIlroy, Graham; Li, Guiyi; Gay, Nicholas J; Hidalgo, Alicia

    2017-08-01

    Neurotrophism, structural plasticity, learning and long-term memory in mammals critically depend on neurotrophins binding Trk receptors to activate tyrosine kinase (TyrK) signaling, but Drosophila lacks full-length Trks, raising the question of how these processes occur in the fly. Paradoxically, truncated Trk isoforms lacking the TyrK predominate in the adult human brain, but whether they have neuronal functions independently of full-length Trks is unknown. Drosophila has TyrK-less Trk-family receptors, encoded by the kekkon (kek) genes, suggesting that evolutionarily conserved functions for this receptor class may exist. Here, we asked whether Keks function together with Drosophila neurotrophins (DNTs) at the larval glutamatergic neuromuscular junction (NMJ). We tested the eleven LRR and Ig-containing (LIG) proteins encoded in the Drosophila genome for expression in the central nervous system (CNS) and potential interaction with DNTs. Kek-6 is expressed in the CNS, interacts genetically with DNTs and can bind DNT2 in signaling assays and co-immunoprecipitations. Ligand binding is promiscuous, as Kek-6 can also bind DNT1, and Kek-2 and Kek-5 can also bind DNT2. In vivo, Kek-6 is found presynaptically in motoneurons, and DNT2 is produced by the muscle to function as a retrograde factor at the NMJ. Kek-6 and DNT2 regulate NMJ growth and synaptic structure. Evidence indicates that Kek-6 does not antagonise the alternative DNT2 receptor Toll-6. Instead, Kek-6 and Toll-6 interact physically, and together regulate structural synaptic plasticity and homeostasis. Using pull-down assays, we identified and validated CaMKII and VAP33A as intracellular partners of Kek-6, and show that they regulate NMJ growth and active zone formation downstream of DNT2 and Kek-6. The synaptic functions of Kek-6 could be evolutionarily conserved. This raises the intriguing possibility that a novel mechanism of structural synaptic plasticity involving truncated Trk-family receptors

  4. Kek-6: A truncated-Trk-like receptor for Drosophila neurotrophin 2 regulates structural synaptic plasticity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suzana Ulian-Benitez

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Neurotrophism, structural plasticity, learning and long-term memory in mammals critically depend on neurotrophins binding Trk receptors to activate tyrosine kinase (TyrK signaling, but Drosophila lacks full-length Trks, raising the question of how these processes occur in the fly. Paradoxically, truncated Trk isoforms lacking the TyrK predominate in the adult human brain, but whether they have neuronal functions independently of full-length Trks is unknown. Drosophila has TyrK-less Trk-family receptors, encoded by the kekkon (kek genes, suggesting that evolutionarily conserved functions for this receptor class may exist. Here, we asked whether Keks function together with Drosophila neurotrophins (DNTs at the larval glutamatergic neuromuscular junction (NMJ. We tested the eleven LRR and Ig-containing (LIG proteins encoded in the Drosophila genome for expression in the central nervous system (CNS and potential interaction with DNTs. Kek-6 is expressed in the CNS, interacts genetically with DNTs and can bind DNT2 in signaling assays and co-immunoprecipitations. Ligand binding is promiscuous, as Kek-6 can also bind DNT1, and Kek-2 and Kek-5 can also bind DNT2. In vivo, Kek-6 is found presynaptically in motoneurons, and DNT2 is produced by the muscle to function as a retrograde factor at the NMJ. Kek-6 and DNT2 regulate NMJ growth and synaptic structure. Evidence indicates that Kek-6 does not antagonise the alternative DNT2 receptor Toll-6. Instead, Kek-6 and Toll-6 interact physically, and together regulate structural synaptic plasticity and homeostasis. Using pull-down assays, we identified and validated CaMKII and VAP33A as intracellular partners of Kek-6, and show that they regulate NMJ growth and active zone formation downstream of DNT2 and Kek-6. The synaptic functions of Kek-6 could be evolutionarily conserved. This raises the intriguing possibility that a novel mechanism of structural synaptic plasticity involving truncated Trk

  5. High-fat diet induces hepatic insulin resistance and impairment of synaptic plasticity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhigang Liu

    Full Text Available High-fat diet (HFD-induced obesity is associated with insulin resistance, which may affect brain synaptic plasticity through impairment of insulin-sensitive processes underlying neuronal survival, learning, and memory. The experimental model consisted of 3 month-old C57BL/6J mice fed either a normal chow diet (control group or a HFD (60% of calorie from fat; HFD group for 12 weeks. This model was characterized as a function of time in terms of body weight, fasting blood glucose and insulin levels, HOMA-IR values, and plasma triglycerides. IRS-1/Akt pathway was assessed in primary hepatocytes and brain homogenates. The effect of HFD in brain was assessed by electrophysiology, input/output responses and long-term potentiation. HFD-fed mice exhibited a significant increase in body weight, higher fasting glucose- and insulin levels in plasma, lower glucose tolerance, and higher HOMA-IR values. In liver, HFD elicited (a a significant decrease of insulin receptor substrate (IRS-1 phosphorylation on Tyr608 and increase of Ser307 phosphorylation, indicative of IRS-1 inactivation; (b these changes were accompanied by inflammatory responses in terms of increases in the expression of NFκB and iNOS and activation of the MAP kinases p38 and JNK; (c primary hepatocytes from mice fed a HFD showed decreased cellular oxygen consumption rates (indicative of mitochondrial functional impairment; this can be ascribed partly to a decreased expression of PGC1α and mitochondrial biogenesis. In brain, HFD feeding elicited (a an inactivation of the IRS-1 and, consequentially, (b a decreased expression and plasma membrane localization of the insulin-sensitive neuronal glucose transporters GLUT3/GLUT4; (c a suppression of the ERK/CREB pathway, and (d a substantial decrease in long-term potentiation in the CA1 region of hippocampus (indicative of impaired synaptic plasticity. It may be surmised that 12 weeks fed with HFD induce a systemic insulin resistance that impacts

  6. Cortactin Is a Regulator of Activity-Dependent Synaptic Plasticity Controlled by Wingless.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alicea, Daniel; Perez, Marizabeth; Maldonado, Carolina; Dominicci-Cotto, Carihann; Marie, Bruno

    2017-02-22

    Major signaling molecules initially characterized as key early developmental regulators are also essential for the plasticity of the nervous system. Previously, the Wingless (Wg)/Wnt pathway was shown to underlie the structural and electrophysiological changes during activity-dependent synaptic plasticity at the Drosophila neuromuscular junction. A challenge remains to understand how this signal mediates the cellular changes underlying this plasticity. Here, we focus on the actin regulator Cortactin, a major organizer of protrusion, membrane mobility, and invasiveness, and define its new role in synaptic plasticity. We show that Cortactin is present presynaptically and postsynaptically at the Drosophila NMJ and that it is a presynaptic regulator of rapid activity-dependent modifications in synaptic structure. Furthermore, animals lacking presynaptic Cortactin show a decrease in spontaneous release frequency, and presynaptic Cortactin is necessary for the rapid potentiation of spontaneous release frequency that takes place during activity-dependent plasticity. Most interestingly, Cortactin levels increase at stimulated synaptic terminals and this increase requires neuronal activity, de novo transcription and depends on Wg/Wnt expression. Because it is not simply the presence of Cortactin in the presynaptic terminal but its increase that is necessary for the full range of activity-dependent plasticity, we conclude that it probably plays a direct and important role in the regulation of this process. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT In the nervous system, changes in activity that lead to modifications in synaptic structure and function are referred to as synaptic plasticity and are thought to be the basis of learning and memory. The secreted Wingless/Wnt molecule is a potent regulator of synaptic plasticity in both vertebrates and invertebrates. Understanding the molecular mechanisms that underlie these plastic changes is a major gap in our knowledge. Here, we identify a

  7. Loss of Cdc42 leads to defects in synaptic plasticity and remote memory recall.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Il Hwan; Wang, Hong; Soderling, Scott H; Yasuda, Ryohei

    2014-07-08

    Cdc42 is a signaling protein important for reorganization of actin cytoskeleton and morphogenesis of cells. However, the functional role of Cdc42 in synaptic plasticity and in behaviors such as learning and memory are not well understood. Here we report that postnatal forebrain deletion of Cdc42 leads to deficits in synaptic plasticity and in remote memory recall using conditional knockout of Cdc42. We found that deletion of Cdc42 impaired LTP in the Schaffer collateral synapses and postsynaptic structural plasticity of dendritic spines in CA1 pyramidal neurons in the hippocampus. Additionally, loss of Cdc42 did not affect memory acquisition, but instead significantly impaired remote memory recall. Together these results indicate that the postnatal functions of Cdc42 may be crucial for the synaptic plasticity in hippocampal neurons, which contribute to the capacity for remote memory recall.

  8. Phosphorylation of AMPA receptors is required for sensory deprivation-induced homeostatic synaptic plasticity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anubhuti Goel

    Full Text Available Sensory experience, and the lack thereof, can alter the function of excitatory synapses in the primary sensory cortices. Recent evidence suggests that changes in sensory experience can regulate the synaptic level of Ca(2+-permeable AMPA receptors (CP-AMPARs. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying such a process have not been determined. We found that binocular visual deprivation, which is a well-established in vivo model to produce multiplicative synaptic scaling in visual cortex of juvenile rodents, is accompanied by an increase in the phosphorylation of AMPAR GluR1 (or GluA1 subunit at the serine 845 (S845 site and the appearance of CP-AMPARs at synapses. To address the role of GluR1-S845 in visual deprivation-induced homeostatic synaptic plasticity, we used mice lacking key phosphorylation sites on the GluR1 subunit. We found that mice specifically lacking the GluR1-S845 site (GluR1-S845A mutants, which is a substrate of cAMP-dependent kinase (PKA, show abnormal basal excitatory synaptic transmission and lack visual deprivation-induced homeostatic synaptic plasticity. We also found evidence that increasing GluR1-S845 phosphorylation alone is not sufficient to produce normal multiplicative synaptic scaling. Our study provides concrete evidence that a GluR1 dependent mechanism, especially S845 phosphorylation, is a necessary pre-requisite step for in vivo homeostatic synaptic plasticity.

  9. Diverse synaptic plasticity mechanisms orchestrated to form and retrieve memories in spiking neural networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zenke, Friedemann; Agnes, Everton J; Gerstner, Wulfram

    2015-04-21

    Synaptic plasticity, the putative basis of learning and memory formation, manifests in various forms and across different timescales. Here we show that the interaction of Hebbian homosynaptic plasticity with rapid non-Hebbian heterosynaptic plasticity is, when complemented with slower homeostatic changes and consolidation, sufficient for assembly formation and memory recall in a spiking recurrent network model of excitatory and inhibitory neurons. In the model, assemblies were formed during repeated sensory stimulation and characterized by strong recurrent excitatory connections. Even days after formation, and despite ongoing network activity and synaptic plasticity, memories could be recalled through selective delay activity following the brief stimulation of a subset of assembly neurons. Blocking any component of plasticity prevented stable functioning as a memory network. Our modelling results suggest that the diversity of plasticity phenomena in the brain is orchestrated towards achieving common functional goals.

  10. Diverse synaptic plasticity mechanisms orchestrated to form and retrieve memories in spiking neural networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zenke, Friedemann; Agnes, Everton J.; Gerstner, Wulfram

    2015-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity, the putative basis of learning and memory formation, manifests in various forms and across different timescales. Here we show that the interaction of Hebbian homosynaptic plasticity with rapid non-Hebbian heterosynaptic plasticity is, when complemented with slower homeostatic changes and consolidation, sufficient for assembly formation and memory recall in a spiking recurrent network model of excitatory and inhibitory neurons. In the model, assemblies were formed during repeated sensory stimulation and characterized by strong recurrent excitatory connections. Even days after formation, and despite ongoing network activity and synaptic plasticity, memories could be recalled through selective delay activity following the brief stimulation of a subset of assembly neurons. Blocking any component of plasticity prevented stable functioning as a memory network. Our modelling results suggest that the diversity of plasticity phenomena in the brain is orchestrated towards achieving common functional goals. PMID:25897632

  11. A neuromorphic implementation of multiple spike-timing synaptic plasticity rules for large-scale neural networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Runchun M; Hamilton, Tara J; Tapson, Jonathan C; van Schaik, André

    2015-01-01

    We present a neuromorphic implementation of multiple synaptic plasticity learning rules, which include both Spike Timing Dependent Plasticity (STDP) and Spike Timing Dependent Delay Plasticity (STDDP). We present a fully digital implementation as well as a mixed-signal implementation, both of which use a novel dynamic-assignment time-multiplexing approach and support up to 2(26) (64M) synaptic plasticity elements. Rather than implementing dedicated synapses for particular types of synaptic plasticity, we implemented a more generic synaptic plasticity adaptor array that is separate from the neurons in the neural network. Each adaptor performs synaptic plasticity according to the arrival times of the pre- and post-synaptic spikes assigned to it, and sends out a weighted or delayed pre-synaptic spike to the post-synaptic neuron in the neural network. This strategy provides great flexibility for building complex large-scale neural networks, as a neural network can be configured for multiple synaptic plasticity rules without changing its structure. We validate the proposed neuromorphic implementations with measurement results and illustrate that the circuits are capable of performing both STDP and STDDP. We argue that it is practical to scale the work presented here up to 2(36) (64G) synaptic adaptors on a current high-end FPGA platform.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-01-01

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

  13. Learning and Memory, Part II: Molecular Mechanisms of Synaptic Plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lombroso, Paul; Ogren, Marilee

    2009-01-01

    The molecular events that are responsible for strengthening synaptic connections and how these are linked to memory and learning are discussed. The laboratory preparations that allow the investigation of these events are also described.

  14. Buyang Huanwu decoction facilitates neurorehabilitation through an improvement of synaptic plasticity in cerebral ischemic rats

    OpenAIRE

    Pan, Ruihuan; Cai, Jun; Zhan, Lechang; Guo, Youhua; Huang, Run-Yue; Li, Xiong; Zhou, Mingchao; Xu, Dandan; Zhan, Jie; Chen, Hongxia

    2017-01-01

    Background Loss of neural function is a critical but unsolved issue after cerebral ischemia insult. Neuronal plasticity and remodeling are crucial for recovery of neural functions after brain injury. Buyang Huanwu decoction, which is a classic formula in traditional Chinese medicine, can positively alter synaptic plasticity. This study assessed the effects of Buyang Huanwu decoction in combination with physical exercise on neuronal plasticity in cerebral ischemic rats. Methods Cerebral ischem...

  15. Brief Novel Visual Experience Fundamentally Changes Synaptic Plasticity in the Mouse Visual Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Shuo; Wang, Laijian; Tie, Xiaoxiu; Sohya, Kazuhiro; Lin, Xian; Kirkwood, Alfredo; Jiang, Bin

    2017-09-27

    LTP has been known to be a mechanism by which experience modifies synaptic responses in the neocortex. Visual deprivation in the form of dark exposure or dark rearing from birth enhances NMDAR-dependent LTP in layer 2/3 of visual cortex, a process often termed metaplasticity, which may involve changes in NMDAR subunit composition and function. However, the effects of reexposure to light after dark rearing from birth on LTP induction have not been explored. Here, we showed that the light exposure after dark rearing revealed a novel NMDAR independent form of LTP in the layer 2/3 pyramidal cells in visual cortex of mice of both sexes, which is dependent on mGluR5 activation and is associated with intracellular Ca 2+ rise, CaMKII activity, PKC activity, and intact protein synthesis. Moreover, the capacity to induce mGluR-dependent LTP is transient: it only occurs when mice of both sexes reared in the dark from birth are exposed to light for 10-12 h, and it does not occur in vision-experienced, male mice, even after prolonged exposure to dark. Thus, the mGluR5-LTP unmasked by short visual experience can only be observed after dark rearing but not after dark exposure. These results suggested that, as in hippocampus, in layer 2/3 of visual cortex, there is coexistence of two distinct activity-dependent systems of synaptic plasticity, NMDAR-LTP, and mGluR5-LTP. The mGluR5-LTP unmasked by short visual experience may play a critical role in the faster establishment of normal receptive field properties. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT LTP has been known to be a mechanism by which experience modifies synaptic responses in the neocortex. Visual deprivation in the form of dark exposure or dark rearing from birth enhances NMDAR-dependent LTP in layer 2/3 of visual cortex, a process often termed metaplasticity. NMDAR-dependent form of LTP in visual cortex has been well characterized. Here, we report that an NMDAR-independent form of LTP can be promoted by novel visual experience on dark

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maya Kaufman

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

  17. Tunable low energy, compact and high performance neuromorphic circuit for spike-based synaptic plasticity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mostafa Rahimi Azghadi

    Full Text Available Cortical circuits in the brain have long been recognised for their information processing capabilities and have been studied both experimentally and theoretically via spiking neural networks. Neuromorphic engineers are primarily concerned with translating the computational capabilities of biological cortical circuits, using the Spiking Neural Network (SNN paradigm, into in silico applications that can mimic the behaviour and capabilities of real biological circuits/systems. These capabilities include low power consumption, compactness, and relevant dynamics. In this paper, we propose a new accelerated-time circuit that has several advantages over its previous neuromorphic counterparts in terms of compactness, power consumption, and capability to mimic the outcomes of biological experiments. The presented circuit simulation results demonstrate that, in comparing the new circuit to previous published synaptic plasticity circuits, reduced silicon area and lower energy consumption for processing each spike is achieved. In addition, it can be tuned in order to closely mimic the outcomes of various spike timing- and rate-based synaptic plasticity experiments. The proposed circuit is also investigated and compared to other designs in terms of tolerance to mismatch and process variation. Monte Carlo simulation results show that the proposed design is much more stable than its previous counterparts in terms of vulnerability to transistor mismatch, which is a significant challenge in analog neuromorphic design. All these features make the proposed design an ideal circuit for use in large scale SNNs, which aim at implementing neuromorphic systems with an inherent capability that can adapt to a continuously changing environment, thus leading to systems with significant learning and computational abilities.

  18. Systems biology of synaptic plasticity: a review on N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor mediated biochemical pathways and related mathematical models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Y; Kulasiri, D; Samarasinghe, S

    2014-08-01

    Synaptic plasticity, an emergent property of synaptic networks, has shown strong correlation to one of the essential functions of the brain, memory formation. Through understanding synaptic plasticity, we hope to discover the modulators and mechanisms that trigger memory formation. In this paper, we first review the well understood modulators and mechanisms underlying N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor dependent synaptic plasticity, a major form of synaptic plasticity in hippocampus, and then comment on the key mathematical modelling approaches available in the literature to understand synaptic plasticity as the integration of the established functionalities of synaptic components. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Precise-spike-driven synaptic plasticity: learning hetero-association of spatiotemporal spike patterns.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qiang Yu

    Full Text Available A new learning rule (Precise-Spike-Driven (PSD Synaptic Plasticity is proposed for processing and memorizing spatiotemporal patterns. PSD is a supervised learning rule that is analytically derived from the traditional Widrow-Hoff rule and can be used to train neurons to associate an input spatiotemporal spike pattern with a desired spike train. Synaptic adaptation is driven by the error between the desired and the actual output spikes, with positive errors causing long-term potentiation and negative errors causing long-term depression. The amount of modification is proportional to an eligibility trace that is triggered by afferent spikes. The PSD rule is both computationally efficient and biologically plausible. The properties of this learning rule are investigated extensively through experimental simulations, including its learning performance, its generality to different neuron models, its robustness against noisy conditions, its memory capacity, and the effects of its learning parameters. Experimental results show that the PSD rule is capable of spatiotemporal pattern classification, and can even outperform a well studied benchmark algorithm with the proposed relative confidence criterion. The PSD rule is further validated on a practical example of an optical character recognition problem. The results again show that it can achieve a good recognition performance with a proper encoding. Finally, a detailed discussion is provided about the PSD rule and several related algorithms including tempotron, SPAN, Chronotron and ReSuMe.

  20. AMPA Receptor Trafficking in Homeostatic Synaptic Plasticity: Functional Molecules and Signaling Cascades

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    Guan Wang

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Homeostatic synaptic plasticity is a negative-feedback response employed to compensate for functional disturbances in the nervous system. Typically, synaptic activity is strengthened when neuronal firing is chronically suppressed or weakened when neuronal activity is chronically elevated. At both the whole cell and entire network levels, activity manipulation leads to a global up- or downscaling of the transmission efficacy of all synapses. However, the homeostatic response can also be induced locally at subcellular regions or individual synapses. Homeostatic synaptic scaling is expressed mainly via the regulation of α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptor (AMPAR trafficking and synaptic expression. Here we review the recently identified functional molecules and signaling pathways that are involved in homeostatic plasticity, especially the homeostatic regulation of AMPAR localization at excitatory synapses.

  1. Synaptic plasticity in the medial vestibular nuclei: role of glutamate receptors and retrograde messengers in rat brainstem slices.

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    Grassi, S; Pettorossi, V E

    2001-08-01

    The analysis of cellular-molecular events mediating synaptic plasticity within vestibular nuclei is an attempt to explain the mechanisms underlying vestibular plasticity phenomena. The present review is meant to illustrate the main results, obtained in vitro, on the mechanisms underlying long-term changes in synaptic strength within the medial vestibular nuclei. The synaptic plasticity phenomena taking place at the level of vestibular nuclei could be useful for adapting and consolidating the efficacy of vestibular neuron responsiveness to environmental requirements, as during visuo-vestibular recalibration and vestibular compensation. Following a general introduction on the most salient features of vestibular compensation and visuo-vestibular adaptation, which are two plastic events involving neuronal circuitry within the medial vestibular nuclei, the second and third sections describe the results from rat brainstem slice studies, demonstrating the possibility to induce long-term potentiation and depression in the medial vestibular nuclei, following high frequency stimulation of the primary vestibular afferents. In particular the mechanisms sustaining the induction and expression of vestibular long-term potentiation and depression, such as the role of various glutamate receptors and retrograde messengers have been described. The relevant role of the interaction between the platelet-activating factor, acting as a retrograde messenger, and the presynaptic metabotropic glutamate receptors, in determining the full expression of vestibular long-term potentiation is also underlined. In addition, the mechanisms involved in vestibular long-term potentiation have been compared with those leading to long-term potentiation in the hippocampus to emphasize the most significant differences emerging from vestibular studies. The fourth part, describes recent results demonstrating the essential role of nitric oxide, another retrograde messenger, in the induction of vestibular

  2. Microglia-derived purines modulate mossy fibre synaptic transmission and plasticity through P2X4 and A1 receptors.

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    George, Jimmy; Cunha, Rodrigo A; Mulle, Christophe; Amédée, Thierry

    2016-05-01

    Recent data have provided evidence that microglia, the brain-resident macrophage-like cells, modulate neuronal activity in both physiological and pathophysiological conditions, and microglia are therefore now recognized as synaptic partners. Among different neuromodulators, purines, which are produced and released by microglia, have emerged as promising candidates to mediate interactions between microglia and synapses. The cellular effects of purines are mediated through a large family of receptors for adenosine and for ATP (P2 receptors). These receptors are present at brain synapses, but it is unknown whether they can respond to microglia-derived purines to modulate synaptic transmission and plasticity. Here, we used a simple model of adding immune-challenged microglia to mouse hippocampal slices to investigate their impact on synaptic transmission and plasticity at hippocampal mossy fibre (MF) synapses onto CA3 pyramidal neurons. MF-CA3 synapses show prominent forms of presynaptic plasticity that are involved in the encoding and retrieval of memory. We demonstrate that microglia-derived ATP differentially modulates synaptic transmission and short-term plasticity at MF-CA3 synapses by acting, respectively, on presynaptic P2X4 receptors and on adenosine A1 receptors after conversion of extracellular ATP to adenosine. We also report that P2X4 receptors are densely located in the mossy fibre tract in the dentate gyrus-CA3 circuitry. In conclusion, this study reveals an interplay between microglia-derived purines and MF-CA3 synapses, and highlights microglia as potent modulators of presynaptic plasticity. © 2016 The Authors. European Journal of Neuroscience published by Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  3. Pain-related synaptic plasticity in spinal dorsal horn neurons: role of CGRP

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    Willis William D

    2006-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The synaptic and cellular mechanisms of pain-related central sensitization in the spinal cord are not fully understood yet. Calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP has been identified as an important molecule in spinal nociceptive processing and ensuing behavioral responses, but its contribution to synaptic plasticity, cellular mechanisms and site of action in the spinal cord remain to be determined. Here we address the role of CGRP in synaptic plasticity in the spinal dorsal horn in a model of arthritic pain. Results Whole-cell current- and voltage-clamp recordings were made from substantia gelatinosa (SG neurons in spinal cord slices from control rats and arthritic rats (> 6 h postinjection of kaolin/carrageenan into the knee. Monosynaptic excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs were evoked by electrical stimulation of afferents in the dorsal root near the dorsal root entry zone. Neurons in slices from arthritic rats showed increased synaptic transmission and excitability compared to controls. A selective CGRP1 receptor antagonist (CGRP8-37 reversed synaptic plasticity in neurons from arthritic rats but had no significant effect on normal transmission. CGRP facilitated synaptic transmission in the arthritis pain model more strongly than under normal conditions where both facilitatory and inhibitory effects were observed. CGRP also increased neuronal excitability. Miniature EPSC analysis suggested a post- rather than pre-synaptic mechanism of CGRP action. Conclusion This study is the first to show synaptic plasticity in the spinal dorsal horn in a model of arthritic pain that involves a postsynaptic action of CGRP on SG neurons.

  4. A neuromorphic implementation of multiple spike-timing synaptic plasticity rules for large-scale neural networks

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    Runchun Mark Wang

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available We present a neuromorphic implementation of multiple synaptic plasticity learning rules, which include both Spike Timing Dependent Plasticity (STDP and Spike Timing Dependent Delay Plasticity (STDDP. We present a fully digital implementation as well as a mixed-signal implementation, both of which use a novel dynamic-assignment time-multiplexing approach and support up to 2^26 (64M synaptic plasticity elements. Rather than implementing dedicated synapses for particular types of synaptic plasticity, we implemented a more generic synaptic plasticity adaptor array that is separate from the neurons in the neural network. Each adaptor performs synaptic plasticity according to the arrival times of the pre- and post-synaptic spikes assigned to it, and sends out a weighted and/or delayed pre-synaptic spike to the target synapse in the neural network. This strategy provides great flexibility for building complex large-scale neural networks, as a neural network can be configured for multiple synaptic plasticity rules without changing its structure. We validate the proposed neuromorphic implementations with measurement results and illustrate that the circuits are capable of performing both STDP and STDDP. We argue that it is practical to scale the work presented here up to 2^36 (64G synaptic adaptors on a current high-end FPGA platform.

  5. Decreased Neuron Number and Synaptic Plasticity in SIRT3-Knockout Mice with Poor Remote Memory.

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    Kim, Hyopil; Kim, Somi; Choi, Ja Eun; Han, DaeHee; Koh, Soo Min; Kim, Hyun-Seok; Kaang, Bong-Kiun

    2017-10-26

    The sirtuin family of proteins consists of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide-dependent deacetylases that are involved in the response to calorie restriction and various physiological phenomena, such as aging and cognition. One of these proteins, sirtuin 3 (SIRT3), is localized in the mitochondria and protects the cell against oxidative or metabolic stress. Sirtuin protein deficiencies have been shown to accelerate neurodegeneration in neurotoxic conditions. The mechanisms underlying the involvement of SIRT3 in cognition remain unclear. Interestingly, SIRT1, another member of the sirtuin family, has been reported to modulate synaptic plasticity and memory formation. To learn more about these proteins, we examined the behavior and cognitive functions of Sirt3-knockout mice. The mice exhibited poor remote memory. Consistent with this, long-term potentiation was impaired in the Sirt3-knockout mice, and they exhibited decreased neuronal number in the anterior cingulate cortex, which seemed to contribute to their memory deficiencies.

  6. Chaos and Correlated Avalanches in Excitatory Neural Networks with Synaptic Plasticity

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    Pittorino, Fabrizio; Ibáñez-Berganza, Miguel; di Volo, Matteo; Vezzani, Alessandro; Burioni, Raffaella

    2017-03-01

    A collective chaotic phase with power law scaling of activity events is observed in a disordered mean field network of purely excitatory leaky integrate-and-fire neurons with short-term synaptic plasticity. The dynamical phase diagram exhibits two transitions from quasisynchronous and asynchronous regimes to the nontrivial, collective, bursty regime with avalanches. In the homogeneous case without disorder, the system synchronizes and the bursty behavior is reflected into a period doubling transition to chaos for a two dimensional discrete map. Numerical simulations show that the bursty chaotic phase with avalanches exhibits a spontaneous emergence of persistent time correlations and enhanced Kolmogorov complexity. Our analysis reveals a mechanism for the generation of irregular avalanches that emerges from the combination of disorder and deterministic underlying chaotic dynamics.

  7. Synchronization and long-time memory in neural networks with inhibitory hubs and synaptic plasticity

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    Bertolotti, Elena; Burioni, Raffaella; di Volo, Matteo; Vezzani, Alessandro

    2017-01-01

    We investigate the dynamical role of inhibitory and highly connected nodes (hub) in synchronization and input processing of leaky-integrate-and-fire neural networks with short term synaptic plasticity. We take advantage of a heterogeneous mean-field approximation to encode the role of network structure and we tune the fraction of inhibitory neurons fI and their connectivity level to investigate the cooperation between hub features and inhibition. We show that, depending on fI, highly connected inhibitory nodes strongly drive the synchronization properties of the overall network through dynamical transitions from synchronous to asynchronous regimes. Furthermore, a metastable regime with long memory of external inputs emerges for a specific fraction of hub inhibitory neurons, underlining the role of inhibition and connectivity also for input processing in neural networks.

  8. Differential subcellular targeting of glutamate receptor subtypes during homeostatic synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soares, Cary; Lee, Kevin F H; Nassrallah, Wissam; Béïque, Jean-Claude

    2013-08-14

    Homeostatic processes are believed to contribute to the stability of neuronal networks that are perpetually influenced by Hebbian forms of synaptic plasticity. Whereas the rules governing the targeting and trafficking of AMPA and NMDA subtypes of glutamate receptors during rapid Hebbian LTP have been extensively studied, those that are operant during homeostatic forms of synaptic strengthening are less well understood. Here, we used biochemical, biophysical, and pharmacological approaches to investigate glutamate receptor regulation during homeostatic synaptic plasticity. We show in rat organotypic hippocampal slices that prolonged network silencing induced a robust surface upregulation of GluA2-lacking AMPARs, not only at synapses, but also at extrasynaptic dendritic and somatic regions of CA1 pyramidal neurons. We also detected a shift in NMDAR subunit composition that, in contrast to the cell-wide surface delivery of GluA2-lacking AMPARs, occurred exclusively at synapses. The subunit composition and subcellular distribution of AMPARs and NMDARs are therefore distinctly regulated during homeostatic synaptic plasticity. Thus, because subunit composition dictates key channel properties, such as agonist affinity, gating kinetics, and calcium permeability, the homeostatic synaptic process transcends the simple modulation of synaptic strength by also regulating the signaling and integrative properties of central synapses.

  9. Interplay between global and pathway-specific synaptic plasticity in CA1 pyramidal cells.

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    Berberich, Sven; Pohle, Jörg; Pollard, Marie; Barroso-Flores, Janet; Köhr, Georg

    2017-12-06

    Mechanisms underlying information storage have been depicted for global cell-wide and pathway-specific synaptic plasticity. Yet, little is known how these forms of plasticity interact to enhance synaptic competition and network stability. We examined synaptic interactions between apical and basal dendrites of CA1 pyramidal neurons in mouse hippocampal slices. Bursts (50 Hz) of three action potentials (AP-bursts) paired with preceding presynaptic stimulation in stratum radiatum specifically led to LTP of the paired pathway in adult mice (P75). At adolescence (P28), an increase in burst frequency (>50 Hz) was required to gain timing-dependent LTP. Surprisingly, paired radiatum and unpaired oriens pathway potentiated, unless the pre-post delay was shortened from 10 to 5 ms, which selectively potentiated paired radiatum pathway, since unpaired oriens pathway decreased back to baseline. Conversely, the exact same 5 ms pairing in stratum oriens potentiated both pathways, as did AP-bursts alone, which potentiated synaptic efficacy as well as current-evoked postsynaptic spiking. L-type voltage-gated Ca 2+ channels were involved in mediating synaptic potentiation in oriens, whereas NMDA and adenosine receptors counteracted unpaired stratum oriens potentiation following pairing in stratum radiatum. This asymmetric plasticity uncovers important insights into alterations of synaptic efficacy and intrinsic neuronal excitability for pathways that convey hippocampal and extra-hippocampal information.

  10. Impairments of synaptic plasticity in aged animals and in animal models of Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balietti, Marta; Tamagnini, Francesco; Fattoretti, Patrizia; Burattini, Costanza; Casoli, Tiziana; Platano, Daniela; Lattanzio, Fabrizia; Aicardi, Giorgio

    2012-04-01

    Aging is associated with a gradual decline in cognitive functions, and more dramatic cognitive impairments occur in patients affected by Alzheimer's disease (AD). Electrophysiological and molecular studies performed in aged animals and in animal models of AD have shown that cognitive decline is associated with significant modifications in synaptic plasticity (i.e., activity-dependent changes in synaptic strength) and have elucidated some of the cellular mechanisms underlying this process. Morphological studies have revealed a correlation between the quality of memory performance and the extent of structural changes of synaptic contacts occurring during memory consolidation. We briefly review recent experimental evidence here.

  11. Repeated shock stress facilitates basolateral amygdala synaptic plasticity through decreased cAMP-specific phosphodiesterase type IV (PDE4) expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ryan, Steve; Li, Chenchen; Menigoz, Aurélie; Hazra, Rimi; Dabrowska, Joanna; Ehrlich, David; Gordon, Katelyn; Rainnie, Donald G

    2017-12-04

    Previous studies have shown that exposure to stressful events can enhance fear memory and anxiety-like behavior as well as increase synaptic plasticity in the rat basolateral amygdala (BLA). We have evidence that repeated unpredictable shock stress (USS) elicits a long-lasting increase in anxiety-like behavior in rats, but the cellular mechanisms mediating this response remain unclear. Evidence from recent morphological studies suggests that alterations in the dendritic arbor or spine density of BLA principal neurons may underlie stress-induced anxiety behavior. Recently, we have shown that the induction of long-term potentiation (LTP) in BLA principal neurons is dependent on activation of postsynaptic D1 dopamine receptors and the subsequent activation of the cyclic adenosine 5'-monophosphate (cAMP)-protein kinase A (PKA) signaling cascade. Here, we have used in vitro whole-cell patch-clamp recording from BLA principal neurons to investigate the long-term consequences of USS on their morphological properties and synaptic plasticity. We provided evidence that the enhanced anxiety-like behavior in response to USS was not associated with any significant change in the morphological properties of BLA principal neurons, but was associated with a changed frequency dependence of synaptic plasticity, lowered LTP induction threshold, and reduced expression of phosphodiesterase type 4 enzymes (PDE4s). Furthermore, pharmacological inhibition of PDE4 activity with rolipram mimics the effects of chronic stress on LTP induction threshold and baseline startle. Our results provide the first evidence that stress both enhances anxiety-like behavior and facilitates synaptic plasticity in the amygdala through a common mechanism of PDE4-mediated disinhibition of cAMP-PKA signaling.

  12. Presenilins regulate synaptic plasticity and mitochondrial calcium homeostasis in the hippocampal mossy fiber pathway.

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    Lee, Sang Hun; Lutz, David; Mossalam, Mohanad; Bolshakov, Vadim Y; Frotscher, Michael; Shen, Jie

    2017-06-15

    Presenilins play a major role in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease, in which the hippocampus is particularly vulnerable. Previous studies of Presenilin function in the synapse, however, focused exclusively on the hippocampal Schaffer collateral (SC) pathway. Whether Presenilins play similar or distinct roles in other hippocampal synapses is unknown. To investigate the role of Presenilins at mossy fiber (MF) synapses we performed field and whole-cell electrophysiological recordings and Ca 2+ imaging using acute hippocampal slices of postnatal forebrain-restricted Presenilin conditional double knockout (PS cDKO) and control mice at 2 months of age. We also performed quantitative electron microscopy (EM) analysis to determine whether mitochondrial content is affected at presynaptic MF boutons of PS cDKO mice. We further conducted behavioral analysis to assess spatial learning and memory of PS cDKO and control mice at 2 months in the Morris water maze. We found that long-term potentiation and short-term plasticity, such as paired-pulse and frequency facilitation, are impaired at MF synapses of PS cDKO mice. Moreover, post-tetanic potentiation (PTP), another form of short-term plasticity, is also impaired at MF synapses of PS cDKO mice. Furthermore, blockade of mitochondrial Ca 2+ efflux mimics and occludes the PTP deficits at MF synapses of PS cDKO mice, suggesting that mitochondrial Ca 2+ homeostasis is impaired in the absence of PS. Quantitative EM analysis showed normal number and area of mitochondria at presynaptic MF boutons of PS cDKO mice, indicating unchanged mitochondrial content. Ca 2+ imaging of dentate gyrus granule neurons further revealed that cytosolic Ca 2+ increases induced by tetanic stimulation are reduced in PS cDKO granule neurons in acute hippocampal slices, and that inhibition of mitochondrial Ca 2+ release during high frequency stimulation mimics and occludes the Ca 2+ defects observed in PS cDKO neurons. Consistent with synaptic

  13. Dynamic Control of Synaptic Adhesion and Organizing Molecules in Synaptic Plasticity

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    Rudenko, Gabby (Texas-MED)

    2017-01-01

    Synapses play a critical role in establishing and maintaining neural circuits, permitting targeted information transfer throughout the brain. A large portfolio of synaptic adhesion/organizing molecules (SAMs) exists in the mammalian brain involved in synapse development and maintenance. SAMs bind protein partners, formingtrans-complexes spanning the synaptic cleft orcis-complexes attached to the same synaptic membrane. SAMs play key roles in cell adhesion and in organizing protein interaction networks; they can also provide mechanisms of recognition, generate scaffolds onto which partners can dock, and likely take part in signaling processes as well. SAMs are regulated through a portfolio of different mechanisms that affect their protein levels, precise localization, stability, and the availability of their partners at synapses. Interaction of SAMs with their partners can further be strengthened or weakened through alternative splicing, competing protein partners, ectodomain shedding, or astrocytically secreted factors. Given that numerous SAMs appear altered by synaptic activity, in vivo, these molecules may be used to dynamically scale up or scale down synaptic communication. Many SAMs, including neurexins, neuroligins, cadherins, and contactins, are now implicated in neuropsychiatric and neurodevelopmental diseases, such as autism spectrum disorder, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder and studying their molecular mechanisms holds promise for developing novel therapeutics.

  14. Dynamic Control of Synaptic Adhesion and Organizing Molecules in Synaptic Plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-01-01

    Synapses play a critical role in establishing and maintaining neural circuits, permitting targeted information transfer throughout the brain. A large portfolio of synaptic adhesion/organizing molecules (SAMs) exists in the mammalian brain involved in synapse development and maintenance. SAMs bind protein partners, forming trans-complexes spanning the synaptic cleft or cis-complexes attached to the same synaptic membrane. SAMs play key roles in cell adhesion and in organizing protein interaction networks; they can also provide mechanisms of recognition, generate scaffolds onto which partners can dock, and likely take part in signaling processes as well. SAMs are regulated through a portfolio of different mechanisms that affect their protein levels, precise localization, stability, and the availability of their partners at synapses. Interaction of SAMs with their partners can further be strengthened or weakened through alternative splicing, competing protein partners, ectodomain shedding, or astrocytically secreted factors. Given that numerous SAMs appear altered by synaptic activity, in vivo, these molecules may be used to dynamically scale up or scale down synaptic communication. Many SAMs, including neurexins, neuroligins, cadherins, and contactins, are now implicated in neuropsychiatric and neurodevelopmental diseases, such as autism spectrum disorder, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder and studying their molecular mechanisms holds promise for developing novel therapeutics. PMID:28255461

  15. Rules of engagement: factors that regulate activity-dependent synaptic plasticity during neural network development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoneham, Emily T; Sanders, Erin M; Sanyal, Mohima; Dumas, Theodore C

    2010-10-01

    Overproduction and pruning during development is a phenomenon that can be observed in the number of organisms in a population, the number of cells in many tissue types, and even the number of synapses on individual neurons. The sculpting of synaptic connections in the brain of a developing organism is guided by its personal experience, which on a neural level translates to specific patterns of activity. Activity-dependent plasticity at glutamatergic synapses is an integral part of neuronal network formation and maturation in developing vertebrate and invertebrate brains. As development of the rodent forebrain transitions away from an over-proliferative state, synaptic plasticity undergoes modification. Late developmental changes in synaptic plasticity signal the establishment of a more stable network and relate to pronounced perceptual and cognitive abilities. In large part, activation of glutamate-sensitive N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptors regulates synaptic stabilization during development and is a necessary step in memory formation processes that occur in the forebrain. A developmental change in the subunits that compose NMDA receptors coincides with developmental modifications in synaptic plasticity and cognition, and thus much research in this area focuses on NMDA receptor composition. We propose that there are additional, equally important developmental processes that influence synaptic plasticity, including mechanisms that are upstream (factors that influence NMDA receptors) and downstream (intracellular processes regulated by NMDA receptors) from NMDA receptor activation. The goal of this review is to summarize what is known and what is not well understood about developmental changes in functional plasticity at glutamatergic synapses, and in the end, attempt to relate these changes to maturation of neural networks.

  16. Learning structure of sensory inputs with synaptic plasticity leads to interference.

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    Chrol-Cannon, Joseph; Jin, Yaochu

    2015-01-01

    Synaptic plasticity is often explored as a form of unsupervised adaptation in cortical microcircuits to learn the structure of complex sensory inputs and thereby improve performance of classification and prediction. The question of whether the specific structure of the input patterns is encoded in the structure of neural networks has been largely neglected. Existing studies that have analyzed input-specific structural adaptation have used simplified, synthetic inputs in contrast to complex and noisy patterns found in real-world sensory data. In this work, input-specific structural changes are analyzed for three empirically derived models of plasticity applied to three temporal sensory classification tasks that include complex, real-world visual and auditory data. Two forms of spike-timing dependent plasticity (STDP) and the Bienenstock-Cooper-Munro (BCM) plasticity rule are used to adapt the recurrent network structure during the training process before performance is tested on the pattern recognition tasks. It is shown that synaptic adaptation is highly sensitive to specific classes of input pattern. However, plasticity does not improve the performance on sensory pattern recognition tasks, partly due to synaptic interference between consecutively presented input samples. The changes in synaptic strength produced by one stimulus are reversed by the presentation of another, thus largely preventing input-specific synaptic changes from being retained in the structure of the network. To solve the problem of interference, we suggest that models of plasticity be extended to restrict neural activity and synaptic modification to a subset of the neural circuit, which is increasingly found to be the case in experimental neuroscience.

  17. Persistent deficits in hippocampal synaptic plasticity accompany losses of hippocampus-dependent memory in a rodent model of psychosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valentina eWiescholleck

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Irreversible N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR antagonism is known to provoke symptoms of psychosis and schizophrenia in healthy humans. NMDAR hypofunction is believed to play a central role in the pathophysiology of both disorders and in an animal model of psychosis, that is based on irreversible antagonism of NMDARs, pronounced deficits in hippocampal synaptic plasticity have been reported shortly after antagonist treatment. Here, we examined the long-term consequences for long-term potentiation (LTP of a single acute treatment with an irreversible antagonist and investigated whether deficits are associated with memory impairments.The ability to express long-term potentiation (LTP at the perforant pathway – dentate gyrus synapse, as well as object recognition memory was assessed 1, 2, 3 and 4 weeks after a single -treatment of the antagonist, MK801. Here, LTP in freely behaving rats was significantly impaired at all time-points compared to control LTP before treatment. Object recognition memory was also significantly poorer in MK801-treated compared to vehicle-treated animals for several weeks after treatment. Histological analysis revealed no changes in brain tissue.Taken together, these data support that acute treatment with an irreversible NMDAR antagonist persistently impairs hippocampal functioning on behavioral, as well as synaptic levels. The long-term deficits in synaptic plasticity may underlie the cognitive impairments that are associated with schizophrenia-spectrum disorders.

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

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    Regina A. Mangieri

    2017-08-01

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

  19. Control of synaptic plasticity in deep cortical networks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Roelfsema, Pieter R; Holtmaat, Anthony J D G

    2018-01-01

    Humans and many other animals have an enormous capacity to learn about sensory stimuli and to master new skills. However, many of the mechanisms that enable us to learn remain to be understood. One of the greatest challenges of systems neuroscience is to explain how synaptic connections change to

  20. F3/Contactin promotes hippocampal neurogenesis, synaptic plasticity, and memory in adult mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Puzzo, Daniela; Bizzoca, Antonella; Privitera, Lucia; Furnari, Dario; Giunta, Salvatore; Girolamo, Francesco; Pinto, Marco; Gennarini, Gianfranco; Palmeri, Agostino

    2013-12-01

    F3/contactin, a cell-adhesion molecule belonging to the immunoglobulin supergene family, is involved in several aspects of neural development including synapse building, maintenance and functioning. Here, we examine F3/contactin function in adult hippocampal neurogenesis, synaptic plasticity, and memory, using as a model TAG/F3 transgenic mice, where F3/contactin overexpression was induced under control of regulatory sequences from the human TAG-1 (TAX-1) gene. Transgenic mice aged 5 (M5) and 12 (M12) months exhibited an increase in hippocampal size, which correlated with positive effects on precursor proliferation and NeuN expression, these data suggesting a possible role for F3/contactin in promoting adult hippocampal neurogenesis. On the functional level, TAG/F3 mice exhibited increased CA1 long-term potentiation and improved spatial and object recognition memory, notably at 12 months of age. Interestingly, these mice showed an increased expression of the phosphorylated transcription factor CREB, which may represent the main molecular correlate of the observed morphological and functional effects. Altogether, these findings indicate for the first time that F3/contactin plays a role in promoting adult hippocampal neurogenesis and that this effect correlates with improved synaptic function and memory. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  1. A kinetic model of dopamine- and calcium-dependent striatal synaptic plasticity.

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    Takashi Nakano

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Corticostriatal synapse plasticity of medium spiny neurons is regulated by glutamate input from the cortex and dopamine input from the substantia nigra. While cortical stimulation alone results in long-term depression (LTD, the combination with dopamine switches LTD to long-term potentiation (LTP, which is known as dopamine-dependent plasticity. LTP is also induced by cortical stimulation in magnesium-free solution, which leads to massive calcium influx through NMDA-type receptors and is regarded as calcium-dependent plasticity. Signaling cascades in the corticostriatal spines are currently under investigation. However, because of the existence of multiple excitatory and inhibitory pathways with loops, the mechanisms regulating the two types of plasticity remain poorly understood. A signaling pathway model of spines that express D1-type dopamine receptors was constructed to analyze the dynamic mechanisms of dopamine- and calcium-dependent plasticity. The model incorporated all major signaling molecules, including dopamine- and cyclic AMP-regulated phosphoprotein with a molecular weight of 32 kDa (DARPP32, as well as AMPA receptor trafficking in the post-synaptic membrane. Simulations with dopamine and calcium inputs reproduced dopamine- and calcium-dependent plasticity. Further in silico experiments revealed that the positive feedback loop consisted of protein kinase A (PKA, protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A, and the phosphorylation site at threonine 75 of DARPP-32 (Thr75 served as the major switch for inducing LTD and LTP. Calcium input modulated this loop through the PP2B (phosphatase 2B-CK1 (casein kinase 1-Cdk5 (cyclin-dependent kinase 5-Thr75 pathway and PP2A, whereas calcium and dopamine input activated the loop via PKA activation by cyclic AMP (cAMP. The positive feedback loop displayed robust bi-stable responses following changes in the reaction parameters. Increased basal dopamine levels disrupted this dopamine-dependent plasticity. The

  2. Prenatal Ethanol Exposure Persistently Alters Endocannabinoid Signaling and Endocannabinoid-Mediated Excitatory Synaptic Plasticity in Ventral Tegmental Area Dopamine Neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hausknecht, Kathryn; Shen, Ying-Ling; Wang, Rui-Xiang; Haj-Dahmane, Samir; Shen, Roh-Yu

    2017-06-14

    Prenatal ethanol exposure (PE) leads to increased addiction risk which could be mediated by enhanced excitatory synaptic strength in ventral tegmental area (VTA) dopamine (DA) neurons. Previous studies have shown that PE enhances excitatory synaptic strength by facilitating an anti-Hebbian form of long-term potentiation (LTP). In this study, we investigated the effect of PE on endocannabinoid-mediated long-term depression (eCB-LTD) in VTA DA neurons. Rats were exposed to moderate (3 g/kg/d) or high (6 g/kg/d) levels of ethanol during gestation. Whole-cell recordings were conducted in male offspring between 4 and 10 weeks old.We found that PE led to increased amphetamine self-administration. Both moderate and high levels of PE persistently reduced low-frequency stimulation-induced eCB-LTD. Furthermore, action potential-independent glutamate release was regulated by tonic eCB signaling in PE animals. Mechanistic studies for impaired eCB-LTD revealed that PE downregulated CB1 receptor function. Interestingly, eCB-LTD in PE animals was rescued by metabotropic glutamate receptor I activation, suggesting that PE did not impair the synthesis/release of eCBs. In contrast, eCB-LTD in PE animals was not rescued by increasing presynaptic activity, which actually led to LTP in PE animals, whereas LTD was still observed in controls. This result shows that the regulation of excitatory synaptic plasticity is fundamentally altered in PE animals. Together, PE leads to impaired eCB-LTD at the excitatory synapses of VTA DA neurons primarily due to CB1 receptor downregulation. This effect could contribute to enhanced LTP and the maintenance of augmented excitatory synaptic strength in VTA DA neurons and increased addiction risk after PE. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Prenatal ethanol exposure (PE) is among many adverse developmental factors known to increase drug addiction risk. Increased excitatory synaptic strength in VTA DA neurons is a critical cellular mechanism for addiction risk. Our

  3. Taurine content in different brain structures during ageing: effect on hippocampal synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suárez, Luz M; Muñoz, María-Dolores; Martín Del Río, Rafael; Solís, José M

    2016-05-01

    A reduction in taurine content accompanies the ageing process in many tissues. In fact, the decline of brain taurine levels has been associated with cognitive deficits whereas chronic administration of taurine seems to ameliorate age-related deficits such as memory acquisition and retention. In the present study, using rats of three age groups (young, adult and aged) we determined whether the content of taurine and other amino acids (glutamate, serine, glutamine, glycine, alanine and GABA) was altered during ageing in different brain areas (cerebellum, cortex and hippocampus) as well non-brain tissues (heart, kidney, liver and plasma). Moreover, using hippocampal slices we tested whether ageing affects synaptic function and plasticity. These parameters were also determined in aged rats fed with either taurine-devoid or taurine-supplemented diets. With age, we found heterogeneous changes in amino acid content depending on the amino acid type and the tissue. In the case of taurine, its content was reduced in the cerebellum of adult and aged rats, but it remained unchanged in the hippocampus, cortex, heart and liver. The synaptic response amplitude decreased in aged rats, although the late phase of long-term synaptic potentiation (late-LTP), a taurine-dependent process, was not altered. Our study highlights the stability of taurine content in the hippocampus during ageing regardless of whether taurine was present in the diet, which is consistent with the lack of changes detected in late-LTP. These results indicate that the beneficial effects of taurine supplementation might be independent of the replenishment of taurine stores.

  4. R-Modafinil exerts weak effects on spatial memory acquisition and dentate gyrus synaptic plasticity.

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    Bharanidharan Shanmugasundaram

    Full Text Available Modafinil is a wake promoting drug approved for clinical use and also has cognitive enhancing properties. Its enantiomer R-Modafinil (R-MO is not well studied in regard to cognitive enhancing properties. Hence we studied its effect in a spatial memory paradigm and its possible effects on dentate gyrus long-term potentiation (DG-LTP. Clinically relevant doses of R-MO, vehicle dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO or saline were administered for three days during the hole-board test and in in vivo DG-LTP. Synaptic levels of dopamine receptors D1R, D2R, dopamine transporter (DAT, and its phosphorylated form (ph-DAT in DG tissue 4 h after LTP induction were quantified by western blot analysis. Monoamine reuptake and release assays were performed by using transfected HEK-293 cells. Possible neurotoxic side effects on general behaviour were also studied. R-MO at both doses significantly enhanced spatial reference memory during the last training session and during memory retrieval compared to DMSO vehicle but not when compared to saline treated rats. Similarly, R-MO rescues DG-LTP from impairing effects of DMSO. DMSO reduced memory performance and LTP magnitude when compared to saline treated groups. The synaptic DR1 levels in R-MO groups were significantly decreased compared to DMSO group but were comparable with saline treated animals. We found no effect of R-MO in neurotoxicity tests. Thus, our results support the notion that LTP-like synaptic plasticity processes could be one of the factors contributing to the cognitive enhancing effects of spatial memory traces. D1R may play an important regulatory role in these processes.

  5. The Hypoxia Mimetic Protocatechuic Acid Ethyl Ester Inhibits Synaptic Signaling and Plasticity in the Rat Hippocampus.

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    Lanigan, Sinead M; O'Connor, John J

    2018-01-15

    During hypoxia a number of physiological changes occur within neurons including the stabilization of hypoxia-inducible factors (HIFs). The activity of these proteins is regulated by O 2 , Fe 2+ , 2-OG and ascorbate-dependant hydroxylases which contain prolyl-4-hydroxylase domains (PHDs). PHD inhibitors have been widely used and have been shown to have a preconditioning and protective effect against a later and more severe hypoxic insult. In this study we have investigated the neuroprotective effects of the PHD inhibitor, protocatechuic acid ethyl ester (ethyl 3,4, dihydroxybenzoate: EDHB), as well as its effects on synaptic transmission and plasticity in the rat hippocampus using electrophysiological techniques. We report for the first time, an acute concentration-dependent and reversible inhibitory effect of EDHB (10-100 μM) on synaptic transmission in the dentate gyrus but not Cornu Ammonis 1 (CA1) region which does not affect cell viability. This effect was attenuated through the application of the NMDA or GABA A receptor antagonists, AP-5 and picrotoxin in the dentate gyrus. There were no changes in the ratio of paired responses after EDHB application suggesting a post-synaptic mechanism of action. EDHB (100 μM), was found to inhibit synaptic plasticity in both the dentate gyrus and CA1 regions. Application of exogenous Fe 2+ (100 μM) or digoxin (100 nM) did not reverse EDHB's inhibitory effect on synaptic transmission or plasticity in both regions, suggesting that its effects may be HIF-independent. These results highlight a novel modulatory role for the PHD inhibitor EDHB in hippocampal synaptic transmission and plasticity. A novel post-synaptic mechanism of action may be involved, possibly involving NMDA and GABA A receptor activation. Copyright © 2017 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. A light-stimulated synaptic transistor with synaptic plasticity and memory functions based on InGaZnO{sub x}–Al{sub 2}O{sub 3} thin film structure

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    Li, H. K.; Chen, T. P., E-mail: echentp@ntu.edu.sg; Liu, P.; Zhang, Q. [School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 639798 (Singapore); Hu, S. G. [School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 639798 (Singapore); State Key Laboratory of Electronic Thin Films and Integrated Devices, University of Electronic Science and Technology of China, Chengdu, Sichuan 610054 (China); Liu, Y. [State Key Laboratory of Electronic Thin Films and Integrated Devices, University of Electronic Science and Technology of China, Chengdu, Sichuan 610054 (China); Lee, P. S. [School of Materials Science and Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 639798 (Singapore)

    2016-06-28

    In this work, a synaptic transistor based on the indium gallium zinc oxide (IGZO)–aluminum oxide (Al{sub 2}O{sub 3}) thin film structure, which uses ultraviolet (UV) light pulses as the pre-synaptic stimulus, has been demonstrated. The synaptic transistor exhibits the behavior of synaptic plasticity like the paired-pulse facilitation. In addition, it also shows the brain's memory behaviors including the transition from short-term memory to long-term memory and the Ebbinghaus forgetting curve. The synapse-like behavior and memory behaviors of the transistor are due to the trapping and detrapping processes of the holes, which are generated by the UV pulses, at the IGZO/Al{sub 2}O{sub 3} interface and/or in the Al{sub 2}O{sub 3} layer.

  7. Learning Structure of Sensory Inputs with Synaptic Plasticity Leads to Interference

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph eChrol-Cannon

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Synaptic plasticity is often explored as a form of unsupervised adaptationin cortical microcircuits to learn the structure of complex sensoryinputs and thereby improve performance of classification and prediction. The question of whether the specific structure of the input patterns is encoded in the structure of neural networks has been largely neglected. Existing studies that have analyzed input-specific structural adaptation have used simplified, synthetic inputs in contrast to complex and noisy patterns found in real-world sensory data.In this work, input-specific structural changes are analyzed forthree empirically derived models of plasticity applied to three temporal sensory classification tasks that include complex, real-world visual and auditory data. Two forms of spike-timing dependent plasticity (STDP and the Bienenstock-Cooper-Munro (BCM plasticity rule are used to adapt the recurrent network structure during the training process before performance is tested on the pattern recognition tasks.It is shown that synaptic adaptation is highly sensitive to specific classes of input pattern. However, plasticity does not improve the performance on sensory pattern recognition tasks, partly due to synaptic interference between consecutively presented input samples. The changes in synaptic strength produced by one stimulus are reversed by thepresentation of another, thus largely preventing input-specific synaptic changes from being retained in the structure of the network.To solve the problem of interference, we suggest that models of plasticitybe extended to restrict neural activity and synaptic modification to a subset of the neural circuit, which is increasingly found to be the casein experimental neuroscience.

  8. A spaceflight study of synaptic plasticity in adult rat vestibular maculas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ross, M. D.

    1994-01-01

    Behavioral signs of vestibular perturbation in altered gravity have not been well correlated with structural modifications in neurovestibular centers. This ultrastructural research investigated synaptic plasticity in hair cells of adult rat utricular maculas exposed to microgravity for nine days on a space shuttle. The hypothesis was that synaptic plasticity would be more evident in type II hair cells because they are part of a distributed modifying macular circuitry. All rats were shared with other investigators and were subjected to treatments unrelated to this experiment. Maculas were obtained from flight and control rats after shuttle return (R + 0) and nine days post-flight (R + 9). R + 9 rats had chromodacryorrhea, a sign of acute stress. Tissues were prepared for ultrastructural study by conventional methods. Ribbon synapses were counted in fifty serial sections from medial utricular macular regions of three rats of each flight and control group. Counts in fifty additional consecutive sections from one sample in each group established method reliability. All synapses were photographed and located to specific cells on mosaics of entire sections. Pooled data were analyzed statistically. Flown rats showed abnormal posture and movement at R + 0. They had statistically significant increases in total ribbon synapses and in sphere-like ribbons in both kinds of hair cells; in type II cells, pairs of synapses nearly doubled and clusters of 3 to 6 synapses increased twelve-fold. At R + 9, behavioral signs were normal. However, synapse counts remained high in both kinds of hair cells of flight maculas and were elevated in control type II cells. Only counts in type I cells showed statistically significant differences at R + 9. High synaptic counts at R + 9 may have resulted from stress due to experimental treatments. The results nevertheless demonstrate that adult maculas retain the potential for synaptic plasticity. Type II cells exhibited more synaptic plasticity, but

  9. The N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor and dysbindin interact to modulate synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gokhale, Avanti; Mullin, Ariana P; Zlatic, Stephanie A; Easley, Charles A; Merritt, Megan E; Raj, Nisha; Larimore, Jennifer; Gordon, David E; Peden, Andrew A; Sanyal, Subhabrata; Faundez, Victor

    2015-05-13

    Dysbindin is a schizophrenia susceptibility factor and subunit of the biogenesis of lysosome-related organelles complex 1 (BLOC-1) required for lysosome-related organelle biogenesis, and in neurons, synaptic vesicle assembly, neurotransmission, and plasticity. Protein networks, or interactomes, downstream of dysbindin/BLOC-1 remain partially explored despite their potential to illuminate neurodevelopmental disorder mechanisms. Here, we conducted a proteome-wide search for polypeptides whose cellular content is sensitive to dysbindin/BLOC-1 loss of function. We identified components of the vesicle fusion machinery as factors downregulated in dysbindin/BLOC-1 deficiency in neuroectodermal cells and iPSC-derived human neurons, among them the N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive factor (NSF). Human dysbindin/BLOC-1 coprecipitates with NSF and vice versa, and both proteins colocalized in a Drosophila model synapse. To test the hypothesis that NSF and dysbindin/BLOC-1 participate in a pathway-regulating synaptic function, we examined the role for NSF in dysbindin/BLOC-1-dependent synaptic homeostatic plasticity in Drosophila. As previously described, we found that mutations in dysbindin precluded homeostatic synaptic plasticity elicited by acute blockage of postsynaptic receptors. This dysbindin mutant phenotype is fully rescued by presynaptic expression of either dysbindin or Drosophila NSF. However, neither reduction of NSF alone or in combination with dysbindin haploinsufficiency impaired homeostatic synaptic plasticity. Our results demonstrate that dysbindin/BLOC-1 expression defects result in altered cellular content of proteins of the vesicle fusion apparatus and therefore influence synaptic plasticity. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/357643-11$15.00/0.

  10. Persistent deficits in hippocampal synaptic plasticity accompany losses of hippocampus-dependent memory in a rodent model of psychosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiescholleck, Valentina; Manahan-Vaughan, Denise

    2013-01-01

    Irreversible N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) antagonism is known to provoke symptoms of psychosis and schizophrenia in healthy humans. NMDAR hypofunction is believed to play a central role in the pathophysiology of both disorders and in an animal model of psychosis, that is based on irreversible antagonism of NMDARs, pronounced deficits in hippocampal synaptic plasticity have been reported shortly after antagonist treatment. Here, we examined the long-term consequences for long-term potentiation (LTP) of a single acute treatment with an irreversible antagonist and investigated whether deficits are associated with memory impairments. The ability to express LTP at the perforant pathway - dentate gyrus synapse, as well as object recognition memory was assessed 1, 2, 3, and 4 weeks after a single treatment of the antagonist, MK801. Here, LTP in freely behaving rats was significantly impaired at all time-points compared to control LTP before treatment. Object recognition memory was also significantly poorer in MK801-treated compared to vehicle-treated animals for several weeks after treatment. Histological analysis revealed no changes in brain tissue. Taken together, these data support that acute treatment with an irreversible NMDAR-antagonist persistently impairs hippocampal functioning on behavioral, as well as synaptic levels. The long-term deficits in synaptic plasticity may underlie the cognitive impairments that are associated with schizophrenia-spectrum disorders.

  11. Maladaptive synaptic plasticity in L-DOPA-induced dyskinesia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qiang Wang

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The emergence of L-DOPA-induced dyskinesia (LID in patients with Parkinson disease (PD could be due to maladaptive plasticity of corticostriatal synapses in response to L-DOPA treatment. A series of recent studies has revealed that LID is associated with marked morphological plasticity of striatal dendritic spines, particularly cell type-specific structural plasticity of medium spiny neurons (MSNs in the striatum. In addition, evidence demonstrating the occurrence of plastic adaptations, including aberrant morphological and functional features, in multiple components of cortico-basal ganglionic circuitry, such as primary motor cortex (M1 and basal ganglia (BG output nuclei. These adaptations have been implicated in the pathophysiology of LID. Here, we briefly review recent studies that have addressed maladaptive plastic changes within the cortico-BG loop in dyskinetic animal models of PD and patients with PD.

  12. Synaptic plasticity of the CA3 commissural projection in epileptic rats: an in vivo electrophysiological study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Queiroz, Claudio M T; Mello, Luiz Eugênio

    2007-05-01

    The hippocampal commissural system has recently been found to participate in the generation of mirror foci after kainate-induced epileptiform discharges. In the present study we have evaluated the electrophysiological alterations in the ventral commissural hippocampal system that originates in the pyramidal CA3 cells and connects to the contralateral CA3 pyramidal cells. The recordings were performed in epileptic rats 24 h after an early behavioural spontaneous seizure between 5 and 21 days after pilocarpine-induced status epilepticus. Epileptic animals presented a marked increase in neuronal excitability after contralateral CA3 stimulation, characterized by a shift to the left in the input-output curve and the clear appearance of a population spike. Input-output curves showed that maximum population excitatory postsynaptic potential (pEPSP) amplitude was decreased by 30%, which could be related to cell death in these regions. Using paired-pulse protocols to evaluate a fast form of synaptic plasticity (i.e. paired-pulse facilitation) we observed that, despite the similar pEPSP amplitude between control and experimental groups, only epileptic animals showed strong paired-pulse population spike facilitation up to 500 ms interstimulus intervals. Despite increased excitability and pyramidal cell death, epileptic animals presented a more robust potentiation after high-frequency stimulation than controls, a protocol used to evaluate a slow form of synaptic plasticity (i.e. long-term potentiation). The increased excitability in CA3 pyramidal neurons enhanced the probability of burst activity in these neurons; this could lead to greater CA1 synchronization. The present results might have relevance for the understanding of epileptogenesis and of learning and memory deficits seen in temporal lobe epilepsy.

  13. Wnts in adult brain: from synaptic plasticity to cognitive deficiencies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliva, Carolina A.; Vargas, Jessica Y.; Inestrosa, Nibaldo C.

    2013-01-01

    During development of the central nervous system the Wnt signaling pathway has been implicated in a wide spectrum of physiological processes, including neuronal connectivity and synapse formation. Wnt proteins and components of the Wnt pathway are expressed in the brain since early development to the adult life, however, little is known about its role in mature synapses. Here, we review evidences indicating that Wnt proteins participate in the remodeling of pre- and post-synaptic regions, thus modulating synaptic function. We include the most recent data in the literature showing that Wnts are constantly released in the brain to maintain the basal neural activity. Also, we review the evidences that involve components of the Wnt pathway in the development of neurological and mental disorders, including a special emphasis on in vivo studies that relate behavioral abnormalities to deficiencies in Wnt signaling. Finally, we include the evidences that support a neuroprotective role of Wnt proteins in Alzheimer’s disease. We postulate that deregulation in Wnt signaling might have a fundamental role in the origin of neurological diseases, by altering the synaptic function at stages where the phenotype is not yet established but when the cognitive decline starts. PMID:24348327

  14. Learning of Precise Spike Times with Homeostatic Membrane Potential Dependent Synaptic Plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Albers, Christian; Westkott, Maren; Pawelzik, Klaus

    2016-01-01

    Precise spatio-temporal patterns of neuronal action potentials underly e.g. sensory representations and control of muscle activities. However, it is not known how the synaptic efficacies in the neuronal networks of the brain adapt such that they can reliably generate spikes at specific points in time. Existing activity-dependent plasticity rules like Spike-Timing-Dependent Plasticity are agnostic to the goal of learning spike times. On the other hand, the existing formal and supervised learning algorithms perform a temporally precise comparison of projected activity with the target, but there is no known biologically plausible implementation of this comparison. Here, we propose a simple and local unsupervised synaptic plasticity mechanism that is derived from the requirement of a balanced membrane potential. Since the relevant signal for synaptic change is the postsynaptic voltage rather than spike times, we call the plasticity rule Membrane Potential Dependent Plasticity (MPDP). Combining our plasticity mechanism with spike after-hyperpolarization causes a sensitivity of synaptic change to pre- and postsynaptic spike times which can reproduce Hebbian spike timing dependent plasticity for inhibitory synapses as was found in experiments. In addition, the sensitivity of MPDP to the time course of the voltage when generating a spike allows MPDP to distinguish between weak (spurious) and strong (teacher) spikes, which therefore provides a neuronal basis for the comparison of actual and target activity. For spatio-temporal input spike patterns our conceptually simple plasticity rule achieves a surprisingly high storage capacity for spike associations. The sensitivity of the MPDP to the subthreshold membrane potential during training allows robust memory retrieval after learning even in the presence of activity corrupted by noise. We propose that MPDP represents a biophysically plausible mechanism to learn temporal target activity patterns.

  15. Hunger States Control the Directions of Synaptic Plasticity via Switching Cell Type-Specific Subunits of NMDA Receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qi, Yong; Yang, Yunlei

    2015-09-23

    It remains largely unknown whether and how hunger states control activity-dependent synaptic plasticity, such as long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD). We here report that both LTP and LTD of excitatory synaptic strength within the appetite control circuits residing in hypothalamic arcuate nucleus (ARC) behave in a manner of hunger states dependence and cell type specificity. For instance, we find that tetanic stimulation induces LTP at orexigenic agouti-related protein (AgRP) neurons in ad libitum fed mice, whereas it induces LTD in food-deprived mice. In an opposite direction, the same induction protocol induces LTD at anorexigenic pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) neurons in fed mice but weak LTP in deprived mice. Mechanistically, we also find that food deprivation increases the expressions of NR2C/NR2D/NR3-containing NMDA receptors (NMDARs) at AgRP neurons that contribute to the inductions of LTD, whereas it decreases their expressions at POMC neurons. Collectively, our data reveal that hunger states control the directions of activity-dependent synaptic plasticity by switching NMDA receptor subpopulations in a cell type-specific manner, providing insights into NMDAR-mediated interactions between energy states and associative memory. Significance statement: Based on the experiments performed in this study, we demonstrate that activity-dependent synaptic plasticity is also under the control of energy states by regulating NMDAR subpopulations in a cell type-specific manner. We thus propose a reversible memory configuration constructed from energy states-dependent cell type-specific bidirectional conversions of LTP and LTD. Together with the distinct functional roles played by NMDAR signaling in the control of food intake and energy states, these findings reveal a new reciprocal interaction between energy states and associative memory, one that might serve as a target for therapeutic treatments of the energy-related memory disorders or vice versa

  16. Transcriptional Control of Synaptic Plasticity by Transcription Factor NF-κB

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engelmann, Christian; Haenold, Ronny

    2016-01-01

    Activation of nuclear factor kappa B (NF-κB) transcription factors is required for the induction of synaptic plasticity and memory formation. All components of this signaling pathway are localized at synapses, and transcriptionally active NF-κB dimers move to the nucleus to translate synaptic signals into altered gene expression. Neuron-specific inhibition results in altered connectivity of excitatory and inhibitory synapses and functionally in selective learning deficits. Recent research on transgenic mice with impaired or hyperactivated NF-κB gave important insights into plasticity-related target gene expression that is regulated by NF-κB. In this minireview, we update the available data on the role of this transcription factor for learning and memory formation and comment on cross-sectional activation of NF-κB in the aged and diseased brain that may directly or indirectly affect κB-dependent transcription of synaptic genes. PMID:26881128

  17. Antidepressants Rescue Stress-Induced Disruption of Synaptic Plasticity via Serotonin Transporter-Independent Inhibition of L-Type Calcium Channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Normann, Claus; Frase, Sibylle; Haug, Verena; von Wolff, Gregor; Clark, Kristin; Münzer, Patrick; Dorner, Alexandra; Scholliers, Jonas; Horn, Max; Vo Van, Tanja; Seifert, Gabriel; Serchov, Tsvetan; Biber, Knut; Nissen, Christoph; Klugbauer, Norbert; Bischofberger, Josef

    2017-10-19

    Long-term synaptic plasticity is a basic ability of the brain to dynamically adapt to external stimuli and regulate synaptic strength and ultimately network function. It is dysregulated by behavioral stress in animal models of depression and in humans with major depressive disorder. Antidepressants have been shown to restore disrupted synaptic plasticity in both animal models and humans; however, the underlying mechanism is unclear. We examined modulation of synaptic plasticity by selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) in hippocampal brain slices from wild-type rats and serotonin transporter (SERT) knockout mice. Recombinant voltage-gated calcium (Ca 2+ ) channels in heterologous expression systems were used to determine the modulation of Ca 2+ channels by SSRIs. We tested the behavioral effects of SSRIs in the chronic behavioral despair model of depression both in the presence and in the absence of SERT. SSRIs selectively inhibited hippocampal long-term depression. The inhibition of long-term depression by SSRIs was mediated by a direct block of voltage-activated L-type Ca 2+ channels and was independent of SERT. Furthermore, SSRIs protected both wild-type and SERT knockout mice from behavioral despair induced by chronic stress. Finally, long-term depression was facilitated in animals subjected to the behavioral despair model, which was prevented by SSRI treatment. These results showed that antidepressants protected synaptic plasticity and neuronal circuitry from the effects of stress via a modulation of Ca 2+ channels and synaptic plasticity independent of SERT. Thus, L-type Ca 2+ channels might constitute an important signaling hub for stress response and for pathophysiology and treatment of depression. Copyright © 2017 Society of Biological Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Activity Dependent Synaptic Plasticity Mimicked on Indium-Tin-Oxide Electric-Double-Layer Transistor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wen, Juan; Zhu, Li Qiang; Fu, Yang Ming; Xiao, Hui; Guo, Li Qiang; Wan, Qing

    2017-10-25

    Ion coupling has provided an additional method to modulate electric properties for solid-state materials. Here, phosphorosilicate glass (PSG)-based electrolyte gated protonic/electronic coupled indium-tin-oxide electric-double-layer (EDL) transistors are fabricated. The oxide transistor exhibits good electrical performances due to an extremely strong proton gating behavior for the electrolyte. With interfacial electrochemical doping, channel conductances of the oxide EDL transistor can be regulated to different levels, corresponding to different initial synaptic weights. Thus, activity dependent synaptic responses such as excitatory postsynaptic current, paired-pulse facilitation, and high-pass filtering are discussed in detail. The proposed proton conductor gated oxide EDL synaptic transistors with activity dependent synaptic plasticities may act as fundamental building blocks for neuromorphic system applications.

  19. The potential role of exercise in chronic stress-related changes in AMPA receptor phenotype underlying synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leem, Yea-Hyun

    2017-12-31

    Chronic stress can cause disturbances in synaptic plasticity, such as longterm potentiation, along with behavioral defects including memory deficits. One major mechanism sustaining synaptic plasticity involves the dynamics and contents of α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid receptors (AMPARs) in the central nervous system. In particular, chronic stress-induced disruption of AMPARs includes it abnormal expression, trafficking, and calcium conductance at glutamatergic synapses, which contributes to synaptic plasticity at excitatory synapses. Exercise has the effect of promoting synaptic plasticity in neurons. However, the contribution of exercise to AMPAR behavior under chronic stressful maladaptation remains unclear. The present article reviews the information about the chronic stress-related synaptic plasticity and the role of exercise from the previous-published articles. AMPAR-mediated synaptic transmission is an important for chronic stress-related changes of synaptic plasticity, and exercise may at least partly contribute to these episodes. The present article discusses the relationship between AMPARs and synaptic plasticity in chronic stress, as well as the potential role of exercise.

  20. SYNAPTIC PLASTICITY IN THE DENTATE GYRUS OF AGED RATS IS ALTERED AFTER CHRONIC NIMODIPINE APPLICATION

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    DEJONG, GI; BUWALDA, B; SCHUURMAN, T; LUITEN, PGM

    1992-01-01

    We examined ultrastructural correlates of synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus of young (3 months) vs aged (30 months) Wistar rats and established the effects of the calcium antagonist nimodipine in animals chronically treated from 24 to 30 months. The effects of nimodipine was studied since this

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amit Agarwal

    2014-08-01

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

  2. SRC Inhibition Reduces NR2B Surface Expression and Synaptic Plasticity in the Amygdala

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinai, Laleh; Duffy, Steven; Roder, John C.

    2010-01-01

    The Src protein tyrosine kinase plays a central role in the regulation of N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) activity by regulating NMDAR subunit 2B (NR2B) surface expression. In the amygdala, NMDA-dependent synaptic plasticity resulting from convergent somatosensory and auditory inputs contributes to emotional memory; however, the role of Src…

  3. Predicting seizure by modeling synaptic plasticity based on EEG signals - a case study of inherited epilepsy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Honghui; Su, Jianzhong; Wang, Qingyun; Liu, Yueming; Good, Levi; Pascual, Juan

    2018-03-01

    This paper explores the internal dynamical mechanisms of epileptic seizures through quantitative modeling based on full brain electroencephalogram (EEG) signals. Our goal is to provide seizure prediction and facilitate treatment for epileptic patients. Motivated by an earlier mathematical model with incorporated synaptic plasticity, we studied the nonlinear dynamics of inherited seizures through a differential equation model. First, driven by a set of clinical inherited electroencephalogram data recorded from a patient with diagnosed Glucose Transporter Deficiency, we developed a dynamic seizure model on a system of ordinary differential equations. The model was reduced in complexity after considering and removing redundancy of each EEG channel. Then we verified that the proposed model produces qualitatively relevant behavior which matches the basic experimental observations of inherited seizure, including synchronization index and frequency. Meanwhile, the rationality of the connectivity structure hypothesis in the modeling process was verified. Further, through varying the threshold condition and excitation strength of synaptic plasticity, we elucidated the effect of synaptic plasticity to our seizure model. Results suggest that synaptic plasticity has great effect on the duration of seizure activities, which support the plausibility of therapeutic interventions for seizure control.

  4. Differential roles of nonsynaptic and synaptic plasticity in operant reward learning-induced compulsive behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sieling, Fred; Bédécarrats, Alexis; Simmers, John; Prinz, Astrid A; Nargeot, Romuald

    2014-05-05

    Rewarding stimuli in associative learning can transform the irregularly and infrequently generated motor patterns underlying motivated behaviors into output for accelerated and stereotyped repetitive action. This transition to compulsive behavioral expression is associated with modified synaptic and membrane properties of central neurons, but establishing the causal relationships between cellular plasticity and motor adaptation has remained a challenge. We found previously that changes in the intrinsic excitability and electrical synapses of identified neurons in Aplysia's central pattern-generating network for feeding are correlated with a switch to compulsive-like motor output expression induced by in vivo operant conditioning. Here, we used specific computer-simulated ionic currents in vitro to selectively replicate or suppress the membrane and synaptic plasticity resulting from this learning. In naive in vitro preparations, such experimental manipulation of neuronal membrane properties alone increased the frequency but not the regularity of feeding motor output found in preparations from operantly trained animals. On the other hand, changes in synaptic strength alone switched the regularity but not the frequency of feeding output from naive to trained states. However, simultaneously imposed changes in both membrane and synaptic properties reproduced both major aspects of the motor plasticity. Conversely, in preparations from trained animals, experimental suppression of the membrane and synaptic plasticity abolished the increase in frequency and regularity of the learned motor output expression. These data establish direct causality for the contributions of distinct synaptic and nonsynaptic adaptive processes to complementary facets of a compulsive behavior resulting from operant reward learning. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. The Role of GluK4 in Synaptic Plasticity and Affective Behavior in Mice

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    Catches, Justin Samuel

    Kainate receptors (KARs) are glutamate-gated ion channels that signal through both ionotropic and metabotropic pathways (Contractor et al., 2011). Combinations of five KAR subunits (GluK1-5) form tetrameric receptors with GluK1, GluK2, and GluK3 able to form functional homomeric channels. The high-affinity subunits, GluK4 and GluK5, do not form homomeric channels but modify the properties of heteromeric receptors. Expression of the GluK4 receptor subunit in the forebrain is restricted to the CA3 region of the hippocampus and dentate gyrus regions where KARs modulate synaptic plasticity. In this study, ablation of Grik4, which encodes GluK4, in mice reduced KAR synaptic currents and altered activation properties of postsynaptic receptors but left two forms of presynaptic short-term plasticity intact. Disruption of both Grik4 and Grik5 caused complete loss of the postsynaptic ionotropic KAR current and impaired presynaptic frequency facilitation. Additionally, KAR surface expression was altered at pre- and postsynaptic sites at the MF synapse. Despite the loss of ionotropic signaling, KAR-mediated inhibition of the slow afterhyperpolarization current, which is dependent on metabotropic signaling, was intact in CA3 neurons. Long-term potentiation at the MF-CA3 synapse was reduced, likely through a loss of KAR modulation of excitability of the presynaptic MF axons. Genetic variants in the human GRIK4 gene alter the susceptibility for affective disorders (Bloss and Hunter, 2010). We found that ablation of Grik4 in mice resulted in reduced anxiety and an antidepressant-like phenotype. In the elevated zero-maze, a test for anxiety and risk taking behavior, and in two anxiogenic tests, marble-burying and novelty-induced suppression of feeding, anxiety-like behavior was consistently reduced in knockout animals. In the forced swim, a test of learned helplessness used to determine depression-like behavior, knockout mice demonstrated significantly less immobility suggesting

  6. Premotor synaptic plasticity limited to the critical period for song learning.

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    Sizemore, Max; Perkel, David J

    2011-10-18

    Synaptic plasticity has been hypothesized to underlie learning and memory. Understanding of how such plasticity might produce motor learning is limited, in part because of the paucity of model systems with a tractable learned behavior under control of a discrete neural circuit. Songbirds possess both of these traits, thereby providing an excellent model for studying vertebrate motor learning. We report unique evidence of long-term depression (LTD) in the juvenile songbird premotor robust nucleus of the arcopallium (RA). LTD induction at RA recurrent collateral synapses requires NMDA receptors, postsynaptic depolarization, and postsynaptic calcium, and can be reversed by high-frequency stimulation. In adult birds, which have exited the critical period for sensorimotor learning and cannot modify their song, we were no longer able to induce LTD at RA collateral synapses. Furthermore, testosterone-induced premature maturation of song in juveniles abolishes LTD. LTD in nucleus RA therefore makes an excellent candidate mechanism to mediate song learning during development and is well-suited to provide insight into other forms of vertebrate motor learning.

  7. Mapping the Consequences of Impaired Synaptic Plasticity in Schizophrenia through Development: An Integrative Model for Diverse Clinical Features.

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    Forsyth, Jennifer K; Lewis, David A

    2017-10-01

    Schizophrenia is associated with alterations in sensory, motor, and cognitive functions that emerge before psychosis onset; identifying pathogenic processes that can account for this multi-faceted phenotype remains a challenge. Accumulating evidence suggests that synaptic plasticity is impaired in schizophrenia. Given the role of synaptic plasticity in learning, memory, and neural circuit maturation, impaired plasticity may underlie many features of the schizophrenia syndrome. Here, we summarize the neurobiology of synaptic plasticity, review evidence that plasticity is impaired in schizophrenia, and explore a framework in which impaired synaptic plasticity interacts with brain maturation to yield the emergence of sensory, motor, cognitive, and psychotic features at different times during development in schizophrenia. Key gaps in the literature and future directions for testing this framework are discussed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Impaired ILK Function Is Associated with Deficits in Hippocampal Based Memory and Synaptic Plasticity in a FASD Rat Model.

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    D Bhattacharya

    Full Text Available Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD is an umbrella term that encompasses a wide range of anatomical and behavioral problems in children who are exposed to alcohol during the prenatal period. There is no effective treatment for FASD, because of lack of complete characterization of the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying this condition. Alcohol has been previously characterized to affect integrins and growth factor signaling receptors. Integrin Linked Kinase (ILK is an effector of integrin and growth-factor signaling which regulates various signaling processes. In FASD, a downstream effector of ILK, Glycogen Synthase Kinase 3β (GSK3β remains highly active (reduced Ser9 phosphorylation. GSK3β has been known to modulate glutamate receptor trafficking and channel properties. Therefore, we hypothesize that the cognitive deficits accompanying FASD are associated with impairments in the ILK signaling pathway. Pregnant Sprague Dawley rats consumed a "moderate" amount of alcohol throughout gestation, or a calorie-equivalent sucrose solution. Contextual fear conditioning was used to evaluate memory performance in 32-33-day-old pups. Synaptic plasticity was assessed in the Schaffer Collateral pathway, and hippocampal protein lysates were used to evaluate ILK signaling. Alcohol exposed pups showed impaired contextual fear conditioning, as compared to control pups. This reduced memory performance was consistent with decrease in LTP as compared to controls. Hippocampal ILK activity and GSK3β Ser21/9 phosphorylation were significantly lower in alcohol-exposed pups than controls. Increased synaptic expression of GluR2 AMPA receptors was observed with immunoprecipitation of post-synaptic density protein 95 (PSD95. Furthermore, immunoprecipitation of ILK revealed a decreased interaction with GluR2. The ILK pathway appears to play a significant role in memory and synaptic plasticity impairments in FASD rats. These impairments appear to be mediated by

  9. Impaired ILK Function Is Associated with Deficits in Hippocampal Based Memory and Synaptic Plasticity in a FASD Rat Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhattacharya, D.; Dunaway, E. P.; Bhattacharya, S.; Bloemer, J.; Buabeid, M.; Escobar, M.

    2015-01-01

    Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) is an umbrella term that encompasses a wide range of anatomical and behavioral problems in children who are exposed to alcohol during the prenatal period. There is no effective treatment for FASD, because of lack of complete characterization of the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying this condition. Alcohol has been previously characterized to affect integrins and growth factor signaling receptors. Integrin Linked Kinase (ILK) is an effector of integrin and growth-factor signaling which regulates various signaling processes. In FASD, a downstream effector of ILK, Glycogen Synthase Kinase 3β (GSK3β) remains highly active (reduced Ser9 phosphorylation). GSK3β has been known to modulate glutamate receptor trafficking and channel properties. Therefore, we hypothesize that the cognitive deficits accompanying FASD are associated with impairments in the ILK signaling pathway. Pregnant Sprague Dawley rats consumed a “moderate” amount of alcohol throughout gestation, or a calorie-equivalent sucrose solution. Contextual fear conditioning was used to evaluate memory performance in 32–33-day-old pups. Synaptic plasticity was assessed in the Schaffer Collateral pathway, and hippocampal protein lysates were used to evaluate ILK signaling. Alcohol exposed pups showed impaired contextual fear conditioning, as compared to control pups. This reduced memory performance was consistent with decrease in LTP as compared to controls. Hippocampal ILK activity and GSK3β Ser21/9 phosphorylation were significantly lower in alcohol-exposed pups than controls. Increased synaptic expression of GluR2 AMPA receptors was observed with immunoprecipitation of post-synaptic density protein 95 (PSD95). Furthermore, immunoprecipitation of ILK revealed a decreased interaction with GluR2. The ILK pathway appears to play a significant role in memory and synaptic plasticity impairments in FASD rats. These impairments appear to be mediated by reduced

  10. Neuraminidase Inhibition Primes Short-Term Depression and Suppresses Long-Term Potentiation of Synaptic Transmission in the Rat Hippocampus

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    Alina Savotchenko

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Neuraminidase (NEU is a key enzyme that cleaves negatively charged sialic acid residues from membrane proteins and lipids. Clinical and basic science studies have shown that an imbalance in NEU metabolism or changes in NEU activity due to various pathological conditions parallel with behavior and cognitive impairment. It has been suggested that the decreases of NEU activity could cause serious neurological consequences. However, there is a lack of direct evidences that modulation of endogenous NEU activity can impair neuronal function. Using combined rat entorhinal cortex/hippocampal slices and a specific inhibitor of NEU, 2-deoxy-2,3-dehydro-N-acetylneuraminic acid (NADNA, we examined the effect of downregulation of NEU activity on different forms of synaptic plasticity in the hippocampal CA3-to-CA1 network. We show that NEU inhibition results in a significant decrease in long-term potentiation (LTP and an increase in short-term depression. Synaptic depotentiation restores LTP in NADNA-pretreated slices to the control level. These data suggest that short-term NEU inhibition produces the LTP-like effect on neuronal network, which results in damping of further LTP induction. Our findings demonstrate that downregulation of NEU activity could have a major impact on synaptic plasticity and provide a new insight into the cellular mechanism underlying behavioral and cognitive impairment associated with abnormal metabolism of NEU.

  11. Sharp-Wave Ripples Orchestrate the Induction of Synaptic Plasticity during Reactivation of Place Cell Firing Patterns in the Hippocampus

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    Josef H.L.P. Sadowski

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Place cell firing patterns reactivated during hippocampal sharp-wave ripples (SWRs in rest or sleep are thought to induce synaptic plasticity and thereby promote the consolidation of recently encoded information. However, the capacity of reactivated spike trains to induce plasticity has not been directly tested. Here, we show that reactivated place cell firing patterns simultaneously recorded from CA3 and CA1 of rat dorsal hippocampus are able to induce long-term potentiation (LTP at synapses between CA3 and CA1 cells but only if accompanied by SWR-associated synaptic activity and resulting dendritic depolarization. In addition, we show that the precise timing of coincident CA3 and CA1 place cell spikes in relation to SWR onset is critical for the induction of LTP and predictive of plasticity generated by reactivation. Our findings confirm an important role for SWRs in triggering and tuning plasticity processes that underlie memory consolidation in the hippocampus during rest or sleep.

  12. Sharp-Wave Ripples Orchestrate the Induction of Synaptic Plasticity during Reactivation of Place Cell Firing Patterns in the Hippocampus

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    Sadowski, Josef H.L.P.; Jones, Matthew W.; Mellor, Jack R.

    2016-01-01

    Summary Place cell firing patterns reactivated during hippocampal sharp-wave ripples (SWRs) in rest or sleep are thought to induce synaptic plasticity and thereby promote the consolidation of recently encoded information. However, the capacity of reactivated spike trains to induce plasticity has not been directly tested. Here, we show that reactivated place cell firing patterns simultaneously recorded from CA3 and CA1 of rat dorsal hippocampus are able to induce long-term potentiation (LTP) at synapses between CA3 and CA1 cells but only if accompanied by SWR-associated synaptic activity and resulting dendritic depolarization. In addition, we show that the precise timing of coincident CA3 and CA1 place cell spikes in relation to SWR onset is critical for the induction of LTP and predictive of plasticity generated by reactivation. Our findings confirm an important role for SWRs in triggering and tuning plasticity processes that underlie memory consolidation in the hippocampus during rest or sleep. PMID:26904941

  13. Age-dependent modulation of synaptic plasticity and insulin mimetic effect of lipoic acid on a mouse model of Alzheimer's disease.

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    Harsh Sancheti

    Full Text Available Alzheimer's disease is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that entails impairments of memory, thinking and behavior and culminates into brain atrophy. Impaired glucose uptake (accumulating into energy deficits and synaptic plasticity have been shown to be affected in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease. This study examines the ability of lipoic acid to increase brain glucose uptake and lead to improvements in synaptic plasticity on a triple transgenic mouse model of Alzheimer's disease (3xTg-AD that shows progression of pathology as a function of age; two age groups: 6 months (young and 12 months (old were used in this study. 3xTg-AD mice fed 0.23% w/v lipoic acid in drinking water for 4 weeks showed an insulin mimetic effect that consisted of increased brain glucose uptake, activation of the insulin receptor substrate and of the PI3K/Akt signaling pathway. Lipoic acid supplementation led to important changes in synaptic function as shown by increased input/output (I/O and long term potentiation (LTP (measured by electrophysiology. Lipoic acid was more effective in stimulating an insulin-like effect and reversing the impaired synaptic plasticity in the old mice, wherein the impairment of insulin signaling and synaptic plasticity was more pronounced than those in young mice.

  14. Stable learning of functional maps in self-organizing spiking neural networks with continuous synaptic plasticity.

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    Srinivasa, Narayan; Jiang, Qin

    2013-01-01

    This study describes a spiking model that self-organizes for stable formation and maintenance of orientation and ocular dominance maps in the visual cortex (V1). This self-organization process simulates three development phases: an early experience-independent phase, a late experience-independent phase and a subsequent refinement phase during which experience acts to shape the map properties. The ocular dominance maps that emerge accommodate the two sets of monocular inputs that arise from the lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN) to layer 4 of V1. The orientation selectivity maps that emerge feature well-developed iso-orientation domains and fractures. During the last two phases of development the orientation preferences at some locations appear to rotate continuously through ±180° along circular paths and referred to as pinwheel-like patterns but without any corresponding point discontinuities in the orientation gradient maps. The formation of these functional maps is driven by balanced excitatory and inhibitory currents that are established via synaptic plasticity based on spike timing for both excitatory and inhibitory synapses. The stability and maintenance of the formed maps with continuous synaptic plasticity is enabled by homeostasis caused by inhibitory plasticity. However, a prolonged exposure to repeated stimuli does alter the formed maps over time due to plasticity. The results from this study suggest that continuous synaptic plasticity in both excitatory neurons and interneurons could play a critical role in the formation, stability, and maintenance of functional maps in the cortex.

  15. The Roles of Cortical Slow Waves in Synaptic Plasticity and Memory Consolidation.

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    Miyamoto, Daisuke; Hirai, Daichi; Murayama, Masanori

    2017-01-01

    Sleep plays important roles in sensory and motor memory consolidation. Sleep oscillations, reflecting neural population activity, involve the reactivation of learning-related neurons and regulate synaptic strength and, thereby affect memory consolidation. Among sleep oscillations, slow waves (0.5-4 Hz) are closely associated with memory consolidation. For example, slow-wave power is regulated in an experience-dependent manner and correlates with acquired memory. Furthermore, manipulating slow waves can enhance or impair memory consolidation. During slow wave sleep, inter-areal interactions between the cortex and hippocampus (HC) have been proposed to consolidate declarative memory; however, interactions for non-declarative (HC-independent) memory remain largely uninvestigated. We recently showed that the directional influence in a slow-wave range through a top-down cortical long-range circuit is involved in the consolidation of non-declarative memory. At the synaptic level, the average cortical synaptic strength is known to be potentiated during wakefulness and depressed during sleep. Moreover, learning causes plasticity in a subset of synapses, allocating memory to them. Sleep may help to differentiate synaptic strength between allocated and non-allocated synapses (i.e., improving the signal-to-noise ratio, which may facilitate memory consolidation). Herein, we offer perspectives on inter-areal interactions and synaptic plasticity for memory consolidation during sleep.

  16. The Roles of Cortical Slow Waves in Synaptic Plasticity and Memory Consolidation

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    Daisuke Miyamoto

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Sleep plays important roles in sensory and motor memory consolidation. Sleep oscillations, reflecting neural population activity, involve the reactivation of learning-related neurons and regulate synaptic strength and, thereby affect memory consolidation. Among sleep oscillations, slow waves (0.5–4 Hz are closely associated with memory consolidation. For example, slow-wave power is regulated in an experience-dependent manner and correlates with acquired memory. Furthermore, manipulating slow waves can enhance or impair memory consolidation. During slow wave sleep, inter-areal interactions between the cortex and hippocampus (HC have been proposed to consolidate declarative memory; however, interactions for non-declarative (HC-independent memory remain largely uninvestigated. We recently showed that the directional influence in a slow-wave range through a top-down cortical long-range circuit is involved in the consolidation of non-declarative memory. At the synaptic level, the average cortical synaptic strength is known to be potentiated during wakefulness and depressed during sleep. Moreover, learning causes plasticity in a subset of synapses, allocating memory to them. Sleep may help to differentiate synaptic strength between allocated and non-allocated synapses (i.e., improving the signal-to-noise ratio, which may facilitate memory consolidation. Herein, we offer perspectives on inter-areal interactions and synaptic plasticity for memory consolidation during sleep.

  17. Molecular underpinnings of neurodegenerative disorders: striatal-enriched protein tyrosine phosphatase signaling and synaptic plasticity.

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    Lombroso, Paul J; Ogren, Marilee; Kurup, Pradeep; Nairn, Angus C

    2016-01-01

    This commentary focuses on potential molecular mechanisms related to the dysfunctional synaptic plasticity that is associated with neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. Specifically, we focus on the role of striatal-enriched protein tyrosine phosphatase (STEP) in modulating synaptic function in these illnesses. STEP affects neuronal communication by opposing synaptic strengthening and does so by dephosphorylating several key substrates known to control synaptic signaling and plasticity. STEP levels are elevated in brains from patients with Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. Studies in model systems have found that high levels of STEP result in internalization of glutamate receptors as well as inactivation of ERK1/2, Fyn, Pyk2, and other STEP substrates necessary for the development of synaptic strengthening. We discuss the search for inhibitors of STEP activity that may offer potential treatments for neurocognitive disorders that are characterized by increased STEP activity. Future studies are needed to examine the mechanisms of differential and region-specific changes in STEP expression pattern, as such knowledge could lead to targeted therapies for disorders involving disrupted STEP activity.

  18. Chronic caffeine treatment prevents sleep deprivation-induced impairment of cognitive function and synaptic plasticity.

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    Alhaider, Ibrahim A; Aleisa, Abdulaziz M; Tran, Trinh T; Alzoubi, Karem H; Alkadhi, Karim A

    2010-04-01

    This study was undertaken to provide a detailed account of the effect of chronic treatment with a small dose of caffeine on the deleterious effects of sleep loss on brain function in rats. We investigated the effects of chronic (4 weeks) caffeine treatment (0.3 g/L in drinking water) on memory impairment in acutely (24 h) sleep-deprived adult male Wistar rats. Sleep deprivation was induced using the modified multiple platform model. The effects of caffeine on sleep deprivation-induced hippocampus-dependent learning and memory deficits were studied by 3 approaches: learning and memory performance in the radial arm water maze task, electrophysiological recording of early long-term potentiation (E-LTP) in area CA1 of the hippocampus, and levels of memory- and synaptic plasticity-related signaling molecules after E-LTP induction. The results showed that chronic caffeine treatment prevented impairment of hippocampus-dependent learning, shortterm memory and E-LTP of area CA1 in the sleep-deprived rats. In correlation, chronic caffeine treatment prevented sleep deprivation-associated decrease in the levels of phosphorylated calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (P-CaMKII) during expression of E-LTP. The results suggest that long-term use of a low dose of caffeine prevents impairment of short-term memory and E-LTP in acutely sleep-deprived rats.

  19. The Brain-Enriched MicroRNA miR-9-3p Regulates Synaptic Plasticity and Memory.

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    Sim, Su-Eon; Lim, Chae-Seok; Kim, Jae-Ick; Seo, Daekwan; Chun, Heejung; Yu, Nam-Kyung; Lee, Jaehyun; Kang, SukJae Joshua; Ko, Hyoung-Gon; Choi, Jun-Hyeok; Kim, TaeHyun; Jang, Eun-Hae; Han, Joohyun; Bak, Myeong Seong; Park, Jong-Eun; Jang, Deok-Jin; Baek, Daehyun; Lee, Yong-Seok; Kaang, Bong-Kiun

    2016-08-17

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small, noncoding RNAs that posttranscriptionally regulate gene expression in many tissues. Although a number of brain-enriched miRNAs have been identified, only a few specific miRNAs have been revealed as critical regulators of synaptic plasticity, learning, and memory. miR-9-5p/3p are brain-enriched miRNAs known to regulate development and their changes have been implicated in several neurological disorders, yet their role in mature neurons in mice is largely unknown. Here, we report that inhibition of miR-9-3p, but not miR-9-5p, impaired hippocampal long-term potentiation (LTP) without affecting basal synaptic transmission. Moreover, inhibition of miR-9-3p in the hippocampus resulted in learning and memory deficits. Furthermore, miR-9-3p inhibition increased the expression of the LTP-related genes Dmd and SAP97, the expression levels of which are negatively correlated with LTP. These results suggest that miR-9-3p-mediated gene regulation plays important roles in synaptic plasticity and hippocampus-dependent memory. Despite the abundant expression of the brain-specific microRNA miR-9-5p/3p in both proliferating and postmitotic neurons, most functional studies have focused on their role in neuronal development. Here, we examined the role of miR-9-5p/3p in adult brain and found that miR-9-3p, but not miR-9-5p, has a critical role in hippocampal synaptic plasticity and memory. Moreover, we identified in vivo binding targets of miR-9-3p that are involved in the regulation of long-term potentiation. Our study provides the very first evidence for the critical role of miR-9-3p in synaptic plasticity and memory in the adult mouse. Copyright © 2016 the authors 0270-6474/16/368641-12$15.00/0.

  20. Crucial Roles for SIRT2 and AMPA Receptor Acetylation in Synaptic Plasticity and Memory.

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    Wang, Guan; Li, Shaomin; Gilbert, James; Gritton, Howard J; Wang, Zemin; Li, Zhangyuan; Han, Xue; Selkoe, Dennis J; Man, Heng-Ye

    2017-08-08

    AMPA receptors (AMPARs) mediate fast excitatory synaptic transmission and are crucial for synaptic plasticity, learning, and memory. However, the molecular control of AMPAR stability and its neurophysiological significance remain unclear. Here, we report that AMPARs are subject to lysine acetylation at their C termini. Acetylation reduces AMPAR internalization and degradation, leading to increased cell-surface localization and prolonged receptor half-life. Through competition for the same lysine residues, acetylation intensity is inversely related to the levels of AMPAR ubiquitination. We find that sirtuin 2 (SIRT2) acts as an AMPAR deacetylase regulating AMPAR trafficking and proteostasis. SIRT2 knockout mice (Sirt2 -/- ) show marked upregulation in AMPAR acetylation and protein accumulation. Both Sirt2 -/- mice and mice expressing acetylation mimetic GluA1 show aberrant synaptic plasticity, accompanied by impaired learning and memory. These findings establish SIRT2-regulated lysine acetylation as a form of AMPAR post-translational modification that regulates its turnover, as well as synaptic plasticity and cognitive function. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. AMPA receptor trafficking and the mechanisms underlying synaptic plasticity and cognitive aging

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    Henley, Jeremy M.; Wilkinson, Kevin A.

    2013-01-01

    Even in healthy individuals there is an inexorable agerelated decline in cognitive function. This is due, in large part, to reduced synaptic plasticity caused by changes in the molecular composition of the postsynaptic membrane. AMPA receptors (AMPARs) are glutamate-gated cation channels that mediate the overwhelming majority of fast excitatory transmission in the brain. Changes in AMPAR number and/or function are a core feature of synaptic plasticity and age-related cognitive decline, AMPARs are highly dynamic proteins that are subject to highly controlled trafficking, recycling, and/or degradation and replacement. This active regulation of AMPAR synthesis, targeting, synaptic dwell time, and degradation is fundamentally important for memory formation and storage. Further, aberrant AMPAR trafficking and consequent detrimental changes in synapses are strongly implicated in many brain diseases, which represent a vast social and economic burden. The purpose of this article is to provide an overview of the molecular and cellular AMPA receptor trafficking events that control synaptic responsiveness and plasticity, and highlight what is known currently known about how these processes change with age and disease. PMID:23576886

  2. Effects of amitriptyline and fluoxetine on synaptic plasticity in the dentate gyrus of hippocampal formation in rats

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    Ghasem Zarei

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Several studies have been shown that antidepressant drugs have contradictory effects on cognitive processes. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate the effects of amitriptyline and fluoxetine on synaptic plasticity in the dentate gyrus (DG of the hippocampal formation in rat. Materials and Methods: Experimental groups were the control, the fluoxetine, and amitriptyline. The rats were treated for 21 days and then, paired pulse facilitation/inhibition (PPF/I and long-term potentiation (LTP in perforant path-DG synapses were assessed (by 400 Hz tetanization. Field excitatory post-synaptic potential (fEPSP slope and population spike (PS amplitude were measured. Results: The results of PPF/I showed that PS amplitude ratios were increased in 10-70 ms inter-stimulus intervals in the amitriptyline group compared to the control group. In the fluoxetine group, EPSP slope ratios were decreased in intervals 30, 40, and 50 ms inter-stimulus intervals compared to the control group. The PS-LTP was significantly lower in the fluoxetine and the amitriptyline groups with respect to the control group. Conclusion: The results showed that fluoxetine and amitriptyline affect synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus and these effects is probably due to the impact on the number of active neurons.

  3. Changed Synaptic Plasticity in Neural Circuits of Depressive-Like and Escitalopram-Treated Rats.

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    Li, Xiao-Li; Yuan, Yong-Gui; Xu, Hua; Wu, Di; Gong, Wei-Gang; Geng, Lei-Yu; Wu, Fang-Fang; Tang, Hao; Xu, Lin; Zhang, Zhi-Jun

    2015-04-21

    Although progress has been made in the detection and characterization of neural plasticity in depression, it has not been fully understood in individual synaptic changes in the neural circuits under chronic stress and antidepressant treatment. Using electron microscopy and Western-blot analyses, the present study quantitatively examined the changes in the Gray's Type I synaptic ultrastructures and the expression of synapse-associated proteins in the key brain regions of rats' depressive-related neural circuit after chronic unpredicted mild stress and/or escitalopram administration. Meanwhile, their depressive behaviors were also determined by several tests. The Type I synapses underwent considerable remodeling after chronic unpredicted mild stress, which resulted in the changed width of the synaptic cleft, length of the active zone, postsynaptic density thickness, and/or synaptic curvature in the subregions of medial prefrontal cortex and hippocampus, as well as the basolateral amygdaloid nucleus of the amygdala, accompanied by changed expression of several synapse-associated proteins. Chronic escitalopram administration significantly changed the above alternations in the chronic unpredicted mild stress rats but had little effect on normal controls. Also, there was a positive correlation between the locomotor activity and the maximal synaptic postsynaptic density thickness in the stratum radiatum of the Cornu Ammonis 1 region and a negative correlation between the sucrose preference and the length of the active zone in the basolateral amygdaloid nucleus region in chronic unpredicted mild stress rats. These findings strongly indicate that chronic stress and escitalopram can alter synaptic plasticity in the neural circuits, and the remodeled synaptic ultrastructure was correlated with the rats' depressive behaviors, suggesting a therapeutic target for further exploration. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of CINP.

  4. Changed Synaptic Plasticity in Neural Circuits of Depressive-Like and Escitalopram-Treated Rats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xiao-Li; Yuan, Yong-Gui; Xu, Hua; Wu, Di; Gong, Wei-Gang; Geng, Lei-Yu; Wu, Fang-Fang; Tang, Hao; Xu, Lin

    2015-01-01

    Background: Although progress has been made in the detection and characterization of neural plasticity in depression, it has not been fully understood in individual synaptic changes in the neural circuits under chronic stress and antidepressant treatment. Methods: Using electron microscopy and Western-blot analyses, the present study quantitatively examined the changes in the Gray’s Type I synaptic ultrastructures and the expression of synapse-associated proteins in the key brain regions of rats’ depressive-related neural circuit after chronic unpredicted mild stress and/or escitalopram administration. Meanwhile, their depressive behaviors were also determined by several tests. Results: The Type I synapses underwent considerable remodeling after chronic unpredicted mild stress, which resulted in the changed width of the synaptic cleft, length of the active zone, postsynaptic density thickness, and/or synaptic curvature in the subregions of medial prefrontal cortex and hippocampus, as well as the basolateral amygdaloid nucleus of the amygdala, accompanied by changed expression of several synapse-associated proteins. Chronic escitalopram administration significantly changed the above alternations in the chronic unpredicted mild stress rats but had little effect on normal controls. Also, there was a positive correlation between the locomotor activity and the maximal synaptic postsynaptic density thickness in the stratum radiatum of the Cornu Ammonis 1 region and a negative correlation between the sucrose preference and the length of the active zone in the basolateral amygdaloid nucleus region in chronic unpredicted mild stress rats. Conclusion: These findings strongly indicate that chronic stress and escitalopram can alter synaptic plasticity in the neural circuits, and the remodeled synaptic ultrastructure was correlated with the rats’ depressive behaviors, suggesting a therapeutic target for further exploration. PMID:25899067

  5. Myrf ER-Bound Transcription Factors Drive C. elegans Synaptic Plasticity via Cleavage-Dependent Nuclear Translocation.

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    Meng, Jun; Ma, Xiaoxia; Tao, Huaping; Jin, Xia; Witvliet, Daniel; Mitchell, James; Zhu, Ming; Dong, Meng-Qiu; Zhen, Mei; Jin, Yishi; Qi, Yingchuan B

    2017-04-24

    Synaptic refinement is a critical step in nervous system maturation, requiring a carefully timed reorganization and refinement of neuronal connections. We have identified myrf-1 and myrf-2, two C. elegans homologs of Myrf family transcription factors, as key regulators of synaptic rewiring. MYRF-1 and its paralog MYRF-2 are functionally redundant specifically in synaptic rewiring. They co-exist in the same protein complex and act cooperatively to regulate synaptic rewiring. We find that the MYRF proteins localize to the ER membrane and that they are cleaved into active N-terminal fragments, which then translocate into the nucleus to drive synaptic rewiring. Overexpression of active forms of MYRF is sufficient to accelerate synaptic rewiring. MYRF-1 and MYRF-2 are the first genes identified to be indispensable for promoting synaptic rewiring in C. elegans. These findings reveal a molecular mechanism underlying synaptic rewiring and developmental circuit plasticity. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. An Ultralow Leakage Synaptic Scaling Homeostatic Plasticity Circuit With Configurable Time Scales up to 100 ks.

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    Qiao, Ning; Bartolozzi, Chiara; Indiveri, Giacomo

    2017-12-01

    Homeostatic plasticity is a stabilizing mechanism commonly observed in real neural systems that allows neurons to maintain their activity around a functional operating point. This phenomenon can be used in neuromorphic systems to compensate for slowly changing conditions or chronic shifts in the system configuration. However, to avoid interference with other adaptation or learning processes active in the neuromorphic system, it is important that the homeostatic plasticity mechanism operates on time scales that are much longer than conventional synaptic plasticity ones. In this paper we present an ultralow leakage circuit, integrated into an automatic gain control scheme, that can implement the synaptic scaling homeostatic process over extremely long time scales. Synaptic scaling consists in globally scaling the synaptic weights of all synapses impinging onto a neuron maintaining their relative differences, to preserve the effects of learning. The scheme we propose controls the global gain of analog log-domain synapse circuits to keep the neuron's average firing rate constant around a set operating point, over extremely long time scales. To validate the proposed scheme, we implemented the ultralow leakage synaptic scaling homeostatic plasticity circuit in a standard 0.18 m complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor process, and integrated it in an array of dynamic synapses connected to an adaptive integrate and fire neuron. The circuit occupies a silicon area of 84  m 22 m and consumes approximately 10.8 nW with a 1.8 V supply voltage. We present experimental results from the homeostatic circuit and demonstrate how it can be configured to exhibit time scales of up to 100 ks, thanks to a controllable leakage current that can be scaled down to 0.45 aA (2.8 electrons per second).

  7. Modulation of Synaptic Plasticity in the Cortex Needs to Understand All the Players.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meunier, Claire N J; Chameau, Pascal; Fossier, Philippe M

    2017-01-01

    The prefrontal cortex (PFC) is involved in cognitive tasks such as working memory, decision making, risk assessment and regulation of attention. These functions performed by the PFC are supposed to rely on rhythmic electrical activity generated by neuronal network oscillations determined by a precise balance between excitation and inhibition balance (E/I balance) resulting from the coordinated activities of recurrent excitation and feedback and feedforward inhibition. Functional alterations in PFC functions have been associated with cognitive deficits in several pathologies such as major depression, anxiety and schizophrenia. These pathological situations are correlated with alterations of different neurotransmitter systems (i.e., serotonin (5-HT), dopamine (DA), acetylcholine…) that result in alterations of the E/I balance. The aim of this review article is to cover the basic aspects of the regulation of the E/I balance as well as to highlight the importance of the complementarity role of several neurotransmitters in the modulation of the plasticity of excitatory and inhibitory synapses. We illustrate our purpose by recent findings that demonstrate that 5-HT and DA cooperate to regulate the plasticity of excitatory and inhibitory synapses targeting layer 5 pyramidal neurons (L5PyNs) of the PFC and to fine tune the E/I balance. Using a method based on the decomposition of the synaptic conductance into its excitatory and inhibitory components, we show that concomitant activation of D1-like receptors (D1Rs) and 5-HT1ARs, through a modulation of NMDA receptors, favors long term potentiation (LTP) of both excitation and inhibition and consequently does not modify the E/I balance. We also demonstrate that activation of D2-receptors requires functional 5-HT1ARs to shift the E-I balance towards more inhibition and to favor long term depression (LTD) of excitatory synapses through the activation of glycogen synthase kinase 3β (GSK3β). This cooperation between different

  8. Modulation of Synaptic Plasticity in the Cortex Needs to Understand All the Players

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meunier, Claire N. J.; Chameau, Pascal; Fossier, Philippe M.

    2017-01-01

    The prefrontal cortex (PFC) is involved in cognitive tasks such as working memory, decision making, risk assessment and regulation of attention. These functions performed by the PFC are supposed to rely on rhythmic electrical activity generated by neuronal network oscillations determined by a precise balance between excitation and inhibition balance (E/I balance) resulting from the coordinated activities of recurrent excitation and feedback and feedforward inhibition. Functional alterations in PFC functions have been associated with cognitive deficits in several pathologies such as major depression, anxiety and schizophrenia. These pathological situations are correlated with alterations of different neurotransmitter systems (i.e., serotonin (5-HT), dopamine (DA), acetylcholine…) that result in alterations of the E/I balance. The aim of this review article is to cover the basic aspects of the regulation of the E/I balance as well as to highlight the importance of the complementarity role of several neurotransmitters in the modulation of the plasticity of excitatory and inhibitory synapses. We illustrate our purpose by recent findings that demonstrate that 5-HT and DA cooperate to regulate the plasticity of excitatory and inhibitory synapses targeting layer 5 pyramidal neurons (L5PyNs) of the PFC and to fine tune the E/I balance. Using a method based on the decomposition of the synaptic conductance into its excitatory and inhibitory components, we show that concomitant activation of D1-like receptors (D1Rs) and 5-HT1ARs, through a modulation of NMDA receptors, favors long term potentiation (LTP) of both excitation and inhibition and consequently does not modify the E/I balance. We also demonstrate that activation of D2-receptors requires functional 5-HT1ARs to shift the E-I balance towards more inhibition and to favor long term depression (LTD) of excitatory synapses through the activation of glycogen synthase kinase 3β (GSK3β). This cooperation between different

  9. Exercise improves recognition memory and synaptic plasticity in the prefrontal cortex for rats modelling vascular dementia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dong, Juntao; Zhao, Jingpu; Lin, Yangyang; Liang, Huiying; He, Xiaokuo; Zheng, Xiuyuan; Sui, Minghong; Zhuang, Zhiqiang; Yan, Tiebin

    2018-01-01

    Functional electrical stimulation (FES) may induce involuntary exercise and make beneficial effects on vascular dementia (VD) by strengthening the BDNF-pCREB-mediated pathway and hippocampal plasticity. Whether FES improves recognition memory and synaptic plasticity in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) was investigated by establishing a VD model. The VD rats were administered with two weeks of voluntary exercise, forced exercise, or involuntary exercise induced with FES. Sham-operated and control groups were also included. The behavioral changes were assessed with the novel object recognition test and novel object location test. The expression levels of key proteins related to synaptic plasticity in the PFC were also detected. All types of exercise improved the rats' novel object recognition index, but only voluntary exercise and involuntary exercise induced with FES improved the novel object location index. Any sort of exercise enhanced the expression of key proteins in the PFC. Involuntary exercise induced with FES can improve recognition memory in VD better than forced exercise. The mechanism is associated with increased synaptic plasticity in the PFC. FES may be a useful alternative tool for cognitive rehabilitation.

  10. Rapid neural circuit switching mediated by synaptic plasticity during neural morphallactic regeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lybrand, Zane R; Zoran, Mark J

    2012-09-01

    The aquatic oligochaete, Lumbriculus variegatus (Lumbriculidae), undergoes a rapid regenerative transformation of its neural circuits following body fragmentation. This type of nervous system plasticity, called neural morphallaxis, involves the remodeling of the giant fiber pathways that mediate rapid head and tail withdrawal behaviors. Extra- and intracellular electrophysiological recordings demonstrated that changes in cellular properties and synaptic connections underlie neurobehavioral plasticity during morphallaxis. Sensory-to-giant interneuron connections, undetectable prior to body injury, emerged within hours of segment amputation. The appearance of functional synaptic transmission was followed by interneuron activation, coupling of giant fiber spiking to motor outputs and overt segmental shortening. The onset of morphallactic plasticity varied along the body axis and emerged more rapidly in segments closer to regions of sensory field overlap between the two giant fiber pathways. The medial and lateral giant fibers were simultaneously activated during a transient phase of network remodeling. Thus, synaptic plasticity at sensory-to-giant interneuron connections mediates escape circuit morphallaxis in this regenerating annelid worm. Copyright © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  11. DCC Expression by Neurons Regulates Synaptic Plasticity in the Adult Brain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katherine E. Horn

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The transmembrane protein deleted in colorectal cancer (DCC and its ligand, netrin-1, regulate synaptogenesis during development, but their function in the mature central nervous system is unknown. Given that DCC promotes cell-cell adhesion, is expressed by neurons, and activates proteins that signal at synapses, we hypothesized that DCC expression by neurons regulates synaptic function and plasticity in the adult brain. We report that DCC is enriched in dendritic spines of pyramidal neurons in wild-type mice, and we demonstrate that selective deletion of DCC from neurons in the adult forebrain results in the loss of long-term potentiation (LTP, intact long-term depression, shorter dendritic spines, and impaired spatial and recognition memory. LTP induction requires Src activation of NMDA receptor (NMDAR function. DCC deletion severely reduced Src activation. We demonstrate that enhancing NMDAR function or activating Src rescues LTP in the absence of DCC. We conclude that DCC activation of Src is required for NMDAR-dependent LTP and certain forms of learning and memory.

  12. GABAergic synaptic transmission regulates calcium influx during spike-timing dependent plasticity

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    Trevor Balena

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Coincident pre- and postsynaptic activity of hippocampal neurons alters the strength of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABAA-mediated inhibition through a Ca2+-dependent regulation of cation-chloride cotransporters. This long-term synaptic modulation is termed GABAergic spike-timing dependent plasticity (STDP. In the present study, we examined whether the properties of the GABAergic synapses themselves modulate the required postsynaptic Ca2+ influx during GABAergic STDP induction. To do this we first identified GABAergic synapses between cultured hippocampal neurons based on their relatively long decay time constants and their reversal potentials which lay close to the resting membrane potential. GABAergic STDP was then induced by coincidentally (± 1 ms firing the pre- and postsynaptic neurons at 5 Hz for 30 seconds, while postsynaptic Ca2+ was imaged with the Ca2+-sensitive fluorescent dye Fluo4-AM. In all cases, the induction of GABAergic STDP increased postsynaptic Ca2+ above resting levels. We further found that the magnitude of this increase correlated with the amplitude and polarity of the GABAergic postsynaptic current (GPSC; hyperpolarizing GPSCs reduced the Ca2+ influx in comparison to both depolarizing GPSCs, and postsynaptic neurons spiked alone. This relationship was influenced by both the driving force for Cl- and GABAA conductance (which had positive correlations with the Ca2+ influx. The spike-timing order during STDP induction did not influence the correlation between GPSC amplitude and Ca2+ influx, which is likely accounted for by the symmetrical GABAergic STDP window.

  13. UPF1 Governs Synaptic Plasticity through Association with a STAU2 RNA Granule.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graber, Tyson E; Freemantle, Erika; Anadolu, Mina N; Hébert-Seropian, Sarah; MacAdam, Robyn L; Shin, Unkyung; Hoang, Huy-Dung; Alain, Tommy; Lacaille, Jean-Claude; Sossin, Wayne S

    2017-09-20

    Neuronal mRNAs can be packaged in reversibly stalled polysome granules before their transport to distant synaptic locales. Stimulation of synaptic metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) reactivates translation of these particular mRNAs to produce plasticity-related protein; a phenomenon exhibited during mGluR-mediated LTD. This form of plasticity is deregulated in Fragile X Syndrome, a monogenic form of autism in humans, and understanding the stalling and reactivation mechanism could reveal new approaches to therapies. Here, we demonstrate that UPF1, known to stall peptide release during nonsense-mediated RNA decay, is critical for assembly of stalled polysomes in rat hippocampal neurons derived from embryos of either sex. Moreover, UPF1 and its interaction with the RNA binding protein STAU2 are necessary for proper transport and local translation from a prototypical RNA granule substrate and for mGluR-LTD in hippocampal neurons. These data highlight a new, neuronal role for UPF1, distinct from its RNA decay functions, in regulating transport and/or translation of mRNAs that are critical for synaptic plasticity. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The elongation and/or termination steps of mRNA translation are emerging as important control points in mGluR-LTD, a form of synaptic plasticity that is compromised in a severe monogenic form of autism, Fragile X Syndrome. Deciphering the molecular mechanisms controlling this type of plasticity may thus open new therapeutic opportunities. Here, we describe a new role for the ATP-dependent helicase UPF1 and its interaction with the RNA localization protein STAU2 in mediating mGluR-LTD through the regulation of mRNA translation complexes stalled at the level of elongation and/or termination. Copyright © 2017 the authors 0270-6474/17/379116-16$15.00/0.

  14. Postsynaptic Signals Mediating Induction of Long-Term Synaptic Depression in the Entorhinal Cortex

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    Saïd Kourrich

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available The entorhinal cortex receives a large projection from the piriform cortex, and synaptic plasticity in this pathway may affect olfactory processing. In vitro whole cell recordings have been used here to investigate postsynaptic signalling mechanisms that mediate the induction of long-term synaptic depression (LTD in layer II entorhinal cortex cells. To induce LTD, pairs of pulses, using a 30-millisecond interval, were delivered at 1 Hz for 15 minutes. Induction of LTD was blocked by the NMDA receptor antagonist APV and by the calcium chelator BAPTA, consistent with a requirement for calcium influx via NMDA receptors. Induction of LTD was blocked when the FK506 was included in the intracellular solution to block the phosphatase calcineurin. Okadaic acid, which blocks activation of protein phosphatases 1 and 2a, also prevented LTD. Activation of protein phosphatases following calcium influx therefore contributes to induction of LTD in layer II of the entorhinal cortex.

  15. Robust short-term memory without synaptic learning.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samuel Johnson

    Full Text Available Short-term memory in the brain cannot in general be explained the way long-term memory can--as a gradual modification of synaptic weights--since it takes place too quickly. Theories based on some form of cellular bistability, however, do not seem able to account for the fact that noisy neurons can collectively store information in a robust manner. We show how a sufficiently clustered network of simple model neurons can be instantly induced into metastable states capable of retaining information for a short time (a few seconds. The mechanism is robust to different network topologies and kinds of neural model. This could constitute a viable means available to the brain for sensory and/or short-term memory with no need of synaptic learning. Relevant phenomena described by neurobiology and psychology, such as local synchronization of synaptic inputs and power-law statistics of forgetting avalanches, emerge naturally from this mechanism, and we suggest possible experiments to test its viability in more biological settings.

  16. Deep brain stimulation of the amygdala alleviates fear conditioning-induced alterations in synaptic plasticity in the cortical-amygdala pathway and fear memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sui, Li; Huang, SiJia; Peng, BinBin; Ren, Jie; Tian, FuYing; Wang, Yan

    2014-07-01

    Deep brain stimulation (DBS) of the amygdala has been demonstrated to modulate hyperactivity of the amygdala, which is responsible for the symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and thus might be used for the treatment of PTSD. However, the underlying mechanism of DBS of the amygdala in the modulation of the amygdala is unclear. The present study investigated the effects of DBS of the amygdala on synaptic transmission and synaptic plasticity at cortical inputs to the amygdala, which is critical for the formation and storage of auditory fear memories, and fear memories. The results demonstrated that auditory fear conditioning increased single-pulse-evoked field excitatory postsynaptic potentials in the cortical-amygdala pathway. Furthermore, auditory fear conditioning decreased the induction of paired-pulse facilitation and long-term potentiation, two neurophysiological models for studying short-term and long-term synaptic plasticity, respectively, in the cortical-amygdala pathway. In addition, all these auditory fear conditioning-induced changes could be reversed by DBS of the amygdala. DBS of the amygdala also rescued auditory fear conditioning-induced enhancement of long-term retention of fear memory. These findings suggested that DBS of the amygdala alleviating fear conditioning-induced alterations in synaptic plasticity in the cortical-amygdala pathway and fear memory may underlie the neuromodulatory role of DBS of the amygdala in activities of the amygdala.

  17. β-Amyloid triggers aberrant over-scaling of homeostatic synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilbert, James; Shu, Shu; Yang, Xin; Lu, Youming; Zhu, Ling-Qiang; Man, Heng-Ye

    2016-12-13

    The over-production of β-amyloid (Aβ) has been strongly correlated to neuronal dysfunction and altered synaptic plasticity in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Accordingly, it has been proposed that disrupted synaptic transmission and neuronal network instability underlie memory failure that is evident in the early phases of AD. Homeostatic synaptic plasticity (HSP) serves to restrain neuronal activity within a physiological range. Therefore a disruption of this mechanism may lead to destabilization in synaptic and neural circuit function. Here, we report that during HSP by neuronal activity deprivation, application of Aβ results in an aberrant over-response of the up-regulation of AMPA receptor (AMPAR)-mediated synaptic currents and cell-surface AMPAR expression. In the visual cortex, in vivo HSP induced by visual deprivation shows a similar over-response following an Aβ local injection. Aβ increases the expression of GluA2-lacking, calcium permeable AMPARs (CP-AMPARs), which are required for the initiation, but not maintenance of HSP. Both GluA2-lacking and GluA2-containing AMPARs contribute to the Aβ-mediated over-scaling of HSP. We also find that Aβ induces the dissociation of HDAC1 from the miR124 transcription factor EVI1, leading to an up-regulation of miR124 expression and increased amount of CP-AMPARs. Thus, via aberrant stimulation of miR124 expression and biogenesis of CP-AMPARs, Aβ is able to induce an over response in HSP. This Aβ-mediated dysregulation in homeostatic plasticity may play an important role in the pathogenesis of altered neural function and memory deficits in the early stages of AD.

  18. Synaptic plasticity at the interface of health and disease: New insights on the role of endoplasmic reticulum intracellular calcium stores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maggio, N; Vlachos, A

    2014-12-05

    Work from the past 40years has unraveled a wealth of information on the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying synaptic plasticity and their relevance in physiological brain function. At the same time, it has been recognized that a broad range of neurological diseases may be accompanied by severe alterations in synaptic plasticity, i.e., 'maladaptive synaptic plasticity', which could initiate and sustain the remodeling of neuronal networks under pathological conditions. Nonetheless, our current knowledge on the specific contribution and interaction of distinct forms of synaptic plasticity (including metaplasticity and homeostatic plasticity) in the context of pathological brain states remains limited. This review focuses on recent experimental evidence, which highlights the fundamental role of endoplasmic reticulum-mediated Ca(2+) signals in modulating the duration, direction, extent and type of synaptic plasticity. We discuss the possibility that intracellular Ca(2+) stores may regulate synaptic plasticity and hence behavioral and cognitive functions at the interface between physiology and pathology. Copyright © 2014 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. GRASP1 Regulates Synaptic Plasticity and Learning through Endosomal Recycling of AMPA Receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiu, Shu-Ling; Diering, Graham Hugh; Ye, Bing; Takamiya, Kogo; Chen, Chih-Ming; Jiang, Yuwu; Niranjan, Tejasvi; Schwartz, Charles E; Wang, Tao; Huganir, Richard L

    2017-03-22

    Learning depends on experience-dependent modification of synaptic efficacy and neuronal connectivity in the brain. We provide direct evidence for physiological roles of the recycling endosome protein GRASP1 in glutamatergic synapse function and animal behavior. Mice lacking GRASP1 showed abnormal excitatory synapse number, synaptic plasticity, and hippocampal-dependent learning and memory due to a failure in learning-induced synaptic AMPAR incorporation. We identified two GRASP1 point mutations from intellectual disability (ID) patients that showed convergent disruptive effects on AMPAR recycling and glutamate uncaging-induced structural and functional plasticity. Wild-type GRASP1, but not ID mutants, rescued spine loss in hippocampal CA1 neurons in Grasp1 knockout mice. Together, these results demonstrate a requirement for normal recycling endosome function in AMPAR-dependent synaptic function and neuronal connectivity in vivo, and suggest a potential role for GRASP1 in the pathophysiology of human cognitive disorders. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Familiarity Detection is an Intrinsic Property of Cortical Microcircuits with Bidirectional Synaptic Plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Humans instantly recognize a previously seen face as “familiar.” To deepen our understanding of familiarity-novelty detection, we simulated biologically plausible neural network models of generic cortical microcircuits consisting of spiking neurons with random recurrent synaptic connections. NMDA receptor (NMDAR)-dependent synaptic plasticity was implemented to allow for unsupervised learning and bidirectional modifications. Network spiking activity evoked by sensory inputs consisting of face images altered synaptic efficacy, which resulted in the network responding more strongly to a previously seen face than a novel face. Network size determined how many faces could be accurately recognized as familiar. When the simulated model became sufficiently complex in structure, multiple familiarity traces could be retained in the same network by forming partially-overlapping subnetworks that differ slightly from each other, thereby resulting in a high storage capacity. Fisher’s discriminant analysis was applied to identify critical neurons whose spiking activity predicted familiar input patterns. Intriguingly, as sensory exposure was prolonged, the selected critical neurons tended to appear at deeper layers of the network model, suggesting recruitment of additional circuits in the network for incremental information storage. We conclude that generic cortical microcircuits with bidirectional synaptic plasticity have an intrinsic ability to detect familiar inputs. This ability does not require a specialized wiring diagram or supervision and can therefore be expected to emerge naturally in developing cortical circuits. PMID:28534043

  1. Complement emerges as a masterful regulator of CNS homeostasis, neural synaptic plasticity and cognitive function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mastellos, Dimitrios C

    2014-11-01

    Growing evidence points to a previously elusive role of complement-modulated pathways in CNS development, neurogenesis and synaptic plasticity. Distinct complement effectors appear to play a multifaceted role in brain homeostasis by regulating synaptic pruning in the retinogeniculate system and sculpting functional neural circuits both in the developing and adult mammalian brain. A recent study by Perez-Alcazar et al. (2014) provides novel insights into this intricate interplay between complement and the dynamically regulated brain synaptic circuitry, by reporting that mice deficient in C3 exhibit enhanced hippocampus-dependent spatial learning and cognitive performance. This behavioral pattern is associated with an impact of C3 on the functional capacity of glutamatergic synapses, supporting a crucial role for complement in excitatory synapse elimination in the hippocampus. These findings add a fresh twist to this rapidly evolving research field, suggesting that discrete complement components may differentially modulate synaptic connectivity by wiring up with diverse neural effectors in different regions of the brain. The emerging role of complement in synaptogenesis and neural network plasticity opens new conceptual avenues for considering complement interception as a potential therapeutic modality for ameliorating progressive cognitive impairment in age-related, debilitating brain diseases with a prominent inflammatory signature. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Thrombin regulation of synaptic transmission and plasticity: implications for health and disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marina eBen Shimon

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Thrombin, a serine protease involved in the blood coagulation cascade has been shown to affect neural function following blood-brain barrier breakdown. However, several lines of evidence exist that thrombin is also expressed in the brain under physiological conditions, suggesting an involvement of thrombin in the regulation of normal brain functions. Here, we review ours’ as well as others' recent work on the role of thrombin in synaptic transmission and plasticity through direct or indirect activation of Protease-Activated Receptor-1 (PAR1. These studies propose a novel role of thrombin in synaptic plasticity, both in physiology as well as in neurological diseases associated with increased brain thrombin/PAR1 levels.

  3. Domestication of the dog from the wolf was promoted by enhanced excitatory synaptic plasticity: a hypothesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yan; Wang, Guo-Dong; Wang, Ming-Shan; Irwin, David M; Wu, Dong-Dong; Zhang, Ya-Ping

    2014-11-05

    Dogs shared a much closer relationship with humans than any other domesticated animals, probably due to their unique social cognitive capabilities, which were hypothesized to be a by-product of selection for tameness toward humans. Here, we demonstrate that genes involved in glutamate metabolism, which account partially for fear response, indeed show the greatest population differentiation by whole-genome comparison of dogs and wolves. However, the changing direction of their expression supports a role in increasing excitatory synaptic plasticity in dogs rather than reducing fear response. Because synaptic plasticity are widely believed to be cellular correlates of learning and memory, this change may alter the learning and memory abilities of ancient scavenging wolves, weaken the fear reaction toward humans, and prompt the initial interspecific contact. © The Author(s) 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution.

  4. Hierarchical Chunking of Sequential Memory on Neuromorphic Architecture with Reduced Synaptic Plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Guoqi; Deng, Lei; Wang, Dong; Wang, Wei; Zeng, Fei; Zhang, Ziyang; Li, Huanglong; Song, Sen; Pei, Jing; Shi, Luping

    2016-01-01

    Chunking refers to a phenomenon whereby individuals group items together when performing a memory task to improve the performance of sequential memory. In this work, we build a bio-plausible hierarchical chunking of sequential memory (HCSM) model to explain why such improvement happens. We address this issue by linking hierarchical chunking with synaptic plasticity and neuromorphic engineering. We uncover that a chunking mechanism reduces the requirements of synaptic plasticity since it allows applying synapses with narrow dynamic range and low precision to perform a memory task. We validate a hardware version of the model through simulation, based on measured memristor behavior with narrow dynamic range in neuromorphic circuits, which reveals how chunking works and what role it plays in encoding sequential memory. Our work deepens the understanding of sequential memory and enables incorporating it for the investigation of the brain-inspired computing on neuromorphic architecture.

  5. Coordinated activation of distinct Ca2+ sources and metabotropic glutamate receptors encodes Hebbian synaptic plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tigaret, Cezar M.; Olivo, Valeria; Sadowski, Josef H.L.P.; Ashby, Michael C.; Mellor, Jack R.

    2016-01-01

    At glutamatergic synapses, induction of associative synaptic plasticity requires time-correlated presynaptic and postsynaptic spikes to activate postsynaptic NMDA receptors (NMDARs). The magnitudes of the ensuing Ca2+ transients within dendritic spines are thought to determine the amplitude and direction of synaptic change. In contrast, we show that at mature hippocampal Schaffer collateral synapses the magnitudes of Ca2+ transients during plasticity induction do not match this rule. Indeed, LTP induced by time-correlated pre- and postsynaptic spikes instead requires the sequential activation of NMDARs followed by voltage-sensitive Ca2+ channels within dendritic spines. Furthermore, LTP requires inhibition of SK channels by mGluR1, which removes a negative feedback loop that constitutively regulates NMDARs. Therefore, rather than being controlled simply by the magnitude of the postsynaptic calcium rise, LTP induction requires the coordinated activation of distinct sources of Ca2+ and mGluR1-dependent facilitation of NMDAR function. PMID:26758963

  6. Molecular constraints on synaptic tagging and maintenance of long-term potentiation: a predictive model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smolen, Paul; Baxter, Douglas A; Byrne, John H

    2012-01-01

    Protein synthesis-dependent, late long-term potentiation (LTP) and depression (LTD) at glutamatergic hippocampal synapses are well characterized examples of long-term synaptic plasticity. Persistent increased activity of protein kinase M ζ (PKMζ) is thought essential for maintaining LTP. Additional spatial and temporal features that govern LTP and LTD induction are embodied in the synaptic tagging and capture (STC) and cross capture hypotheses. Only synapses that have been "tagged" by a stimulus sufficient for LTP and learning can "capture" PKMζ. A model was developed to simulate the dynamics of key molecules required for LTP and LTD. The model concisely represents relationships between tagging, capture, LTD, and LTP maintenance. The model successfully simulated LTP maintained by persistent synaptic PKMζ, STC, LTD, and cross capture, and makes testable predictions concerning the dynamics of PKMζ. The maintenance of LTP, and consequently of at least some forms of long-term memory, is predicted to require continual positive feedback in which PKMζ enhances its own synthesis only at potentiated synapses. This feedback underlies bistability in the activity of PKMζ. Second, cross capture requires the induction of LTD to induce dendritic PKMζ synthesis, although this may require tagging of a nearby synapse for LTP. The model also simulates the effects of PKMζ inhibition, and makes additional predictions for the dynamics of CaM kinases. Experiments testing the above predictions would significantly advance the understanding of memory maintenance.

  7. Molecular constraints on synaptic tagging and maintenance of long-term potentiation: a predictive model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul Smolen

    Full Text Available Protein synthesis-dependent, late long-term potentiation (LTP and depression (LTD at glutamatergic hippocampal synapses are well characterized examples of long-term synaptic plasticity. Persistent increased activity of protein kinase M ζ (PKMζ is thought essential for maintaining LTP. Additional spatial and temporal features that govern LTP and LTD induction are embodied in the synaptic tagging and capture (STC and cross capture hypotheses. Only synapses that have been "tagged" by a stimulus sufficient for LTP and learning can "capture" PKMζ. A model was developed to simulate the dynamics of key molecules required for LTP and LTD. The model concisely represents relationships between tagging, capture, LTD, and LTP maintenance. The model successfully simulated LTP maintained by persistent synaptic PKMζ, STC, LTD, and cross capture, and makes testable predictions concerning the dynamics of PKMζ. The maintenance of LTP, and consequently of at least some forms of long-term memory, is predicted to require continual positive feedback in which PKMζ enhances its own synthesis only at potentiated synapses. This feedback underlies bistability in the activity of PKMζ. Second, cross capture requires the induction of LTD to induce dendritic PKMζ synthesis, although this may require tagging of a nearby synapse for LTP. The model also simulates the effects of PKMζ inhibition, and makes additional predictions for the dynamics of CaM kinases. Experiments testing the above predictions would significantly advance the understanding of memory maintenance.

  8. Role of the Cannabinoid Receptor Type 1 (CB1) in Synaptic Plasticity, Memory and Emotionality

    OpenAIRE

    Jacob, Wolfgang

    2007-01-01

    The present work focused on the role of the cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1) in synaptic plasticity, memory and emotionality in mice. CB1 is abundantly expressed in the central nervous system and is mainly (if not exclusively) located on GABAergic and glutamatergic nerve cells. CB1 is a G-protein coupled receptor which is essentially inhibiting transmitter release from presynaptic GABAergic or glutamatergic nerve terminals. To differentiate between the physiological signifi...

  9. Amyloid-β Homeostasis Bridges Inflammation, Synaptic Plasticity Deficits and Cognitive Dysfunction in Multiple Sclerosis

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    Mario Stampanoni Bassi

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Cognitive deficits are frequently observed in multiple sclerosis (MS, mainly involving processing speed and episodic memory. Both demyelination and gray matter atrophy can contribute to cognitive deficits in MS. In recent years, neuroinflammation is emerging as a new factor influencing clinical course in MS. Inflammatory cytokines induce synaptic dysfunction in MS. Synaptic plasticity occurring within hippocampal structures is considered as one of the basic physiological mechanisms of learning and memory. In experimental models of MS, hippocampal plasticity is profoundly altered by proinflammatory cytokines. Although mechanisms of inflammation-induced hippocampal pathology in MS are not completely understood, alteration of Amyloid-β (Aβ metabolism is emerging as a key factor linking together inflammation, synaptic plasticity and neurodegeneration in different neurological diseases. We explored the correlation between concentrations of Aβ1–42 and the levels of some proinflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines (interleukin-1β (IL-1β, IL1-ra, IL-8, IL-10, IL-12, tumor necrosis factor α (TNFα, interferon γ (IFNγ in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF of 103 remitting MS patients. CSF levels of Aβ1–42 were negatively correlated with the proinflammatory cytokine IL-8 and positively correlated with the anti-inflammatory molecules IL-10 and interleukin-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1ra. Other correlations, although noticeable, were either borderline or not significant. Our data show that an imbalance between proinflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines may lead to altered Aβ homeostasis, representing a key factor linking together inflammation, synaptic plasticity and cognitive dysfunction in MS. This could be relevant to identify novel therapeutic approaches to hinder the progression of cognitive dysfunction in MS.

  10. Low-frequency transcranial magnetic stimulation is beneficial for enhancing synaptic plasticity in the aging brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Zhan-Chi; Luan, Feng; Xie, Chun-Yan; Geng, Dan-Dan; Wang, Yan-Yong; Ma, Jun

    2015-06-01

    In the aging brain, cognitive function gradually declines and causes a progressive reduction in the structural and functional plasticity of the hippocampus. Transcranial magnetic stimulation is an emerging and novel neurological and psychiatric tool used to investigate the neurobiology of cognitive function. Recent studies have demonstrated that low-frequency transcranial magnetic stimulation (≤1 Hz) ameliorates synaptic plasticity and spatial cognitive deficits in learning-impaired mice. However, the mechanisms by which this treatment improves these deficits during normal aging are still unknown. Therefore, the current study investigated the effects of transcranial magnetic stimulation on the brain-derived neurotrophic factor signal pathway, synaptic protein markers, and spatial memory behavior in the hippocampus of normal aged mice. The study also investigated the downstream regulator, Fyn kinase, and the downstream effectors, synaptophysin and growth-associated protein 43 (both synaptic markers), to determine the possible mechanisms by which transcranial magnetic stimulation regulates cognitive capacity. Transcranial magnetic stimulation with low intensity (110% average resting motor threshold intensity, 1 Hz) increased mRNA and protein levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor, tropomyosin receptor kinase B, and Fyn in the hippocampus of aged mice. The treatment also upregulated the mRNA and protein expression of synaptophysin and growth-associated protein 43 in the hippocampus of these mice. In conclusion, brain-derived neurotrophic factor signaling may play an important role in sustaining and regulating structural synaptic plasticity induced by transcranial magnetic stimulation in the hippocampus of aging mice, and Fyn may be critical during this regulation. These responses may change the structural plasticity of the aging hippocampus, thereby improving cognitive function.

  11. Low-frequency transcranial magnetic stimulation is beneficial for enhancing synaptic plasticity in the aging brain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhan-chi Zhang

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available In the aging brain, cognitive function gradually declines and causes a progressive reduction in the structural and functional plasticity of the hippocampus. Transcranial magnetic stimulation is an emerging and novel neurological and psychiatric tool used to investigate the neurobiology of cognitive function. Recent studies have demonstrated that low-frequency transcranial magnetic stimulation (≤1 Hz ameliorates synaptic plasticity and spatial cognitive deficits in learning-impaired mice. However, the mechanisms by which this treatment improves these deficits during normal aging are still unknown. Therefore, the current study investigated the effects of transcranial magnetic stimulation on the brain-derived neurotrophic factor signal pathway, synaptic protein markers, and spatial memory behavior in the hippocampus of normal aged mice. The study also investigated the downstream regulator, Fyn kinase, and the downstream effectors, synaptophysin and growth-associated protein 43 (both synaptic markers, to determine the possible mechanisms by which transcranial magnetic stimulation regulates cognitive capacity. Transcranial magnetic stimulation with low intensity (110% average resting motor threshold intensity, 1 Hz increased mRNA and protein levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor, tropomyosin receptor kinase B, and Fyn in the hippocampus of aged mice. The treatment also upregulated the mRNA and protein expression of synaptophysin and growth-associated protein 43 in the hippocampus of these mice. In conclusion, brain-derived neurotrophic factor signaling may play an important role in sustaining and regulating structural synaptic plasticity induced by transcranial magnetic stimulation in the hippocampus of aging mice, and Fyn may be critical during this regulation. These responses may change the structural plasticity of the aging hippocampus, thereby improving cognitive function.

  12. Magnesium Protects Cognitive Functions and Synaptic Plasticity in Streptozotocin-Induced Sporadic Alzheimer’s Model

    OpenAIRE

    Zhi-Peng Xu; Li Li; Jian Bao; Zhi-Hao Wang; Juan Zeng; En-Jie Liu; Xiao-Guang Li; Rong-Xi Huang; Di Gao; Meng-Zhu Li; Yao Zhang; Gong-Ping Liu; Jian-Zhi Wang

    2014-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by profound synapse loss and impairments of learning and memory. Magnesium affects many biochemical mechanisms that are vital for neuronal properties and synaptic plasticity. Recent studies have demonstrated that the serum and brain magnesium levels are decreased in AD patients; however, the exact role of magnesium in AD pathogenesis remains unclear. Here, we found that the intraperitoneal administration of magnesium sulfate increased the brain magnes...

  13. Amyloid-β Homeostasis Bridges Inflammation, Synaptic Plasticity Deficits and Cognitive Dysfunction in Multiple Sclerosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stampanoni Bassi, Mario; Garofalo, Sara; Marfia, Girolama A; Gilio, Luana; Simonelli, Ilaria; Finardi, Annamaria; Furlan, Roberto; Sancesario, Giulia M; Di Giandomenico, Jonny; Storto, Marianna; Mori, Francesco; Centonze, Diego; Iezzi, Ennio

    2017-01-01

    Cognitive deficits are frequently observed in multiple sclerosis (MS), mainly involving processing speed and episodic memory. Both demyelination and gray matter atrophy can contribute to cognitive deficits in MS. In recent years, neuroinflammation is emerging as a new factor influencing clinical course in MS. Inflammatory cytokines induce synaptic dysfunction in MS. Synaptic plasticity occurring within hippocampal structures is considered as one of the basic physiological mechanisms of learning and memory. In experimental models of MS, hippocampal plasticity is profoundly altered by proinflammatory cytokines. Although mechanisms of inflammation-induced hippocampal pathology in MS are not completely understood, alteration of Amyloid-β (Aβ) metabolism is emerging as a key factor linking together inflammation, synaptic plasticity and neurodegeneration in different neurological diseases. We explored the correlation between concentrations of Aβ 1-42 and the levels of some proinflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines (interleukin-1β (IL-1β), IL1-ra, IL-8, IL-10, IL-12, tumor necrosis factor α (TNFα), interferon γ (IFNγ)) in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of 103 remitting MS patients. CSF levels of Aβ 1-42 were negatively correlated with the proinflammatory cytokine IL-8 and positively correlated with the anti-inflammatory molecules IL-10 and interleukin-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1ra). Other correlations, although noticeable, were either borderline or not significant. Our data show that an imbalance between proinflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines may lead to altered Aβ homeostasis, representing a key factor linking together inflammation, synaptic plasticity and cognitive dysfunction in MS. This could be relevant to identify novel therapeutic approaches to hinder the progression of cognitive dysfunction in MS.

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

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    Emily Petrus

    2014-01-01

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

  15. [Studying the mechanisms of genomic and synaptic plasticity in neuronal cultures with microelectrode arrays].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mineeva, O A; Burtsev, M S; Anokhin, K V

    2012-01-01

    The plasticity of neural networks is a complex process determined by changes in physiological status, gene expression and phenotype of a cell. A detailed study of this process dynamics requires the simultaneous recording of electrical and genomic activities in networks of neurons. This sets up one of the tasks for modern neuroscience as development of integration of electrophysiology and molecular biology methods. In the paper we review the current approaches to such integration, as well as the choice of molecular markers for detection of genomic and synaptic plasticity of neurons by use of physiological micro-sensorial system based on neuronal cells cultured on the micro-electrode arrays.

  16. Effects of exercise intensity on spatial memory performance and hippocampal synaptic plasticity in transient brain ischemic rats

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Shih, Pei-Cheng; Yang, Yea-Ru; Wang, Ray-Yau

    2013-01-01

    .... Exercise has been proved to improve memory in adult healthy subjects. Such beneficial effects are often suggested to relate to hippocampal synaptic plasticity, which is important for memory processing...

  17. Glucocorticoid receptor activation selectively hampers N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor dependent hippocampal synaptic plasticity in vitro.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wiegert, O.; Pu, Z.; Shor, S.; Joëls, M.; Krugers, H.

    2005-01-01

    Corticosterone and exposure to stressful experiences have been reported to decrease hippocampal synaptic plasticity, in particular when relatively mild stimulation paradigms-presumably activating predominantly N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors-are being used. Using various stimulation paradigms and

  18. Impairments in hippocampal synaptic plasticity following prenatal ethanol exposure are dependent on glutathione levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Patten, Anna R; Brocardo, Patricia S; Sakiyama, Claire; Wortman, Ryan C; Noonan, Athena; Gil-Mohapel, Joana; Christie, Brian R

    2013-12-01

    Previous studies from our laboratory have shown that prenatal ethanol exposure (PNEE) causes a significant deficit in synaptic plasticity, namely long-term potentiation (LTP), in the dentate gyrus (DG) region of the hippocampus of male rats. PNEE has also been shown to induce an increase in oxidative stress and a reduction in antioxidant capacity in the brains of both male and female animals. In this study the interaction between LTP and the major antioxidant in the brain, glutathione (GSH), is examined. We show that depletion of the intracellular reserves of GSH with diethyl maleate (DEM) reduces LTP in control male, but not female animals, mirroring the effects of PNEE. Furthermore, treatment of PNEE animals with N-acetyl cysteine (NAC), a cysteine donor for the synthesis of GSH, increases GSH levels in the hippocampus and completely restores the deficits in LTP in PNEE males. These results indicate that in males GSH plays a major role in regulating LTP, and that PNEE may cause reductions in LTP by reducing the intracellular pool of this endogenous antioxidant. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. Lipopolysaccharide-Induced Spatial Memory and Synaptic Plasticity Impairment Is Preventable by Captopril

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Azam Abareshi

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Introduction. Renin-angiotensin system has a role in inflammation and also is involved in many brain functions such as learning, memory, and emotion. Neuroimmune factors have been proposed as the contributors to the pathogenesis of memory impairments. In the present study, the effect of captopril on spatial memory and synaptic plasticity impairments induced by lipopolysaccharide (LPS was investigated. Methods. The rats were divided and treated into control (saline, LPS (1 mg/kg, LPS-captopril (LPS-Capto; 50 mg/kg captopril before LPS, and captopril groups (50 mg/kg before saline. Morris water maze was done. Long-term potentiation (LTP from CA1 area of hippocampus was assessed by 100 Hz stimulation in the ipsilateral Schaffer collateral pathway. Results. In the LPS group, the spent time and traveled path to reach the platform were longer than those in the control, while, in the LPS-Capto group, they were shorter than those in the LPS group. Moreover, the slope and amplitude of field excitatory postsynaptic potential (fEPSP decreased in the LPS group, as compared to the control group, whereas, in the LPS-Capto group, they increased compared to the LPS group. Conclusion. The results of the present study showed that captopril improved the LPS-induced memory and LTP impairments induced by LPS in rats. Further investigations are required in order to better understand the exact responsible mechanism(s.

  20. Role of the somatostatin system in contextual fear memory and hippocampal synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kluge, Christian; Stoppel, Christian; Szinyei, Csaba; Stork, Oliver; Pape, Hans-Christian

    2008-04-01

    Somatostatin has been implicated in various cognitive and emotional functions, but its precise role is still poorly understood. Here, we have made use of mice with somatostatin deficiency, based upon genetic invalidation or pharmacologically induced depletion, and Pavlovian fear conditioning in order to address the contribution of the somatostatin system to associative fear memory. The results demonstrate an impairment of foreground and background contextual but not tone fear conditioning in mice with targeted ablation of the somatostatin gene. These deficits were associated with a decrease in long-term potentiation in the CA1 area of the hippocampus. Both the behavioral and the electrophysiological phenotypes were mimicked in wild-type mice through application of the somatostatin-depleting substance cysteamine prior to fear training, whereas no further deficits were observed upon application in the somatostatin null mutants. These results suggest that the somatostatin system plays a critical role in the acquisition of contextual fear memory, but not tone fear learning, and further highlights the role of hippocampal synaptic plasticity for information processing concerning contextual information.

  1. Constitutive and Acquired Serotonin Deficiency Alters Memory and Hippocampal Synaptic Plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernandez, Sebastian P; Muzerelle, Aude; Scotto-Lomassese, Sophie; Barik, Jacques; Gruart, Agnès; Delgado-García, José M; Gaspar, Patricia

    2017-01-01

    Serotonin (5-HT) deficiency occurs in a number of brain disorders that affect cognitive function. However, a direct causal relationship between 5-HT hypo-transmission and memory and underlying mechanisms has not been established. We used mice with a constitutive depletion of 5-HT brain levels (Pet1KO mice) to analyze the contribution of 5-HT to different forms of learning and memory. Pet1KO mice exhibited a striking deficit in novel object recognition memory, a hippocampal-dependent task. No alterations were found in tasks for social recognition, procedural learning, or fear memory. Viral delivery of designer receptors exclusively activated by designer drugs was used to selectively silence the activity of 5-HT neurons in the raphe. Inhibition of 5-HT neurons in the median raphe, but not the dorsal raphe, was sufficient to impair object recognition in adult mice. In vivo electrophysiology in behaving mice showed that long-term potentiation in the hippocampus of 5-HT-deficient mice was altered, and administration of the 5-HT1A agonist 8-OHDPAT rescued the memory deficits. Our data suggest that hyposerotonergia selectively affects declarative hippocampal-dependent memory. Serotonergic projections from the median raphe are necessary to regulate object memory and hippocampal synaptic plasticity processes, through an inhibitory control mediated by 5-HT1A receptors.

  2. Synaptic plasticity in a recurrent neural network for versatile and adaptive behaviors of a walking robot

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eduard eGrinke

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Walking animals, like insects, with little neural computing can effectively perform complex behaviors. They can walk around their environment, escape from corners/deadlocks, and avoid or climb over obstacles. While performing all these behaviors, they can also adapt their movements to deal with an unknown situation. As a consequence, they successfully navigate through their complex environment. The versatile and adaptive abilities are the result of an integration of several ingredients embedded in their sensorimotor loop. Biological studies reveal that the ingredients include neural dynamics, plasticity, sensory feedback, and biomechanics. Generating such versatile and adaptive behaviors for a walking robot is a challenging task. In this study, we present a bio-inspired approach to solve this task. Specifically, the approach combines neural mechanisms with plasticity, sensory feedback, and biomechanics. The neural mechanisms consist of adaptive neural sensory processing and modular neural locomotion control. The sensory processing is based on a small recurrent network consisting of two fully connected neurons. Online correlation-based learning with synaptic scaling is applied to adequately change the connections of the network. By doing so, we can effectively exploit neural dynamics (i.e., hysteresis effects and single attractors in the network to generate different turning angles with short-term memory for a biomechanical walking robot. The turning information is transmitted as descending steering signals to the locomotion control which translates the signals into motor actions. As a result, the robot can walk around and adapt its turning angle for avoiding obstacles in different situations as well as escaping from sharp corners or deadlocks. Using backbone joint control embedded in the locomotion control allows the robot to climb over small obstacles. Consequently, it can successfully explore and navigate in complex environments.

  3. Circadian clocks, rhythmic synaptic plasticity and the sleep-wake cycle in zebrafish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Idan eElbaz

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available The circadian clock and homeostatic processes are fundamental mechanisms that regulate sleep. Surprisingly, despite decades of research, we still do not know why we sleep. Intriguing hypotheses suggest that sleep regulates synaptic plasticity and consequently has a beneficial role in learning and memory. However, direct evidence is still limited and the molecular regulatory mechanisms remain unclear. The zebrafish provides a powerful vertebrate model system that enables simple genetic manipulation, imaging of neuronal circuits and synapses in living animals, and the monitoring of behavioral performance during day and night. Thus, the zebrafish has become an attractive model to study circadian and homeostatic processes that regulate sleep. Zebrafish clock- and sleep-related genes have been cloned, neuronal circuits that exhibit circadian rhythms of activity and synaptic plasticity have been studied, and rhythmic behavioral outputs have been characterized. Integration of this data could lead to a better understanding of sleep regulation. Here, we review the progress of circadian clock and sleep studies in zebrafish with special emphasis on the genetic and neuroendocrine mechanisms that regulate rhythms of melatonin secretion, structural synaptic plasticity, locomotor activity and sleep.

  4. DHA dietary supplementation enhances the effects of exercise on synaptic plasticity and cognition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Aiguo; Ying, Zhe; Gomez-Pinilla, Fernando

    2010-01-01

    Omega-3 fatty acids (i.e., docosahexaenoic acid; DHA), similar to exercise, improve cognitive function, promote neuroplasticity, and protect against neurological lesion. In this study, we investigated a possible synergistic action between DHA dietary supplementation and voluntary exercise on modulating synaptic plasticity and cognition. Rats received DHA dietary supplementation (1.25% DHA) with or without voluntary exercise for 12 days. We found that the DHA-enriched diet significantly increased spatial learning ability, and these effects were enhanced by exercise. The DHA-enriched diet increased levels of pro-BDNF and mature BDNF, whereas the additional application of exercise boosted the levels of both. Furthermore, the levels of the activated forms of CREB and synapsin I were incremented by the DHA-enriched diet with greater elevation by the concurrent application of exercise. While the DHA diet reduced hippocampal oxidized protein levels, a combination of a DHA diet and exercise resulted in a greater reduction rate. The levels of activated forms of hippocampal Akt and CaMKII were increased by the DHA-enriched diet, and with even greater elevation by a combination of diet and exercise. Akt and CaMKII signaling are crucial step by which BDNF exerts its action on synaptic plasticity and learning and memory. These results indicate that the DHA diet enhance the effects of exercise on cognition and BDNF-related synaptic plasticity, a capacity that may be used to promote mental health and reduce risk of neurological disorders. PMID:18620024

  5. AKT isoforms have distinct hippocampal expression and roles in synaptic plasticity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levenga, Josien; Wong, Helen; Milstead, Ryan A; Keller, Bailey N; LaPlante, Lauren E; Hoeffer, Charles A

    2017-11-27

    AKT is a kinase regulating numerous cellular processes in the brain, and mutations in AKT are known to affect brain function. AKT is indirectly implicated in synaptic plasticity, but its direct role has not been studied. Moreover, three highly related AKT isoforms are expressed in the brain, but their individual roles are poorly understood. We find in Mus musculus , each AKT isoform has a unique expression pattern in the hippocampus, with AKT1 and AKT3 primarily in neurons but displaying local differences, while AKT2 is in astrocytes. We also find isoform-specific roles for AKT in multiple paradigms of hippocampal synaptic plasticity in area CA1. AKT1, but not AKT2 or AKT3, is required for L-LTP through regulating activity-induced protein synthesis. Interestingly, AKT activity inhibits mGluR-LTD, with overlapping functions for AKT1 and AKT3. In summary, our studies identify distinct expression patterns and roles in synaptic plasticity for AKT isoforms in the hippocampus.

  6. Modulating Effect of Cytokines on Mechanisms of Synaptic Plasticity in the Brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levin, S G; Godukhin, O V

    2017-03-01

    After accumulation of data showing that resident brain cells (neurons, astrocytes, and microglia) produce mediators of the immune system, such as cytokines and their receptors under normal physiological conditions, a critical need emerged for investigating the role of these mediators in cognitive processes. The major problem for understanding the functional role of cytokines in the mechanisms of synaptic plasticity, de novo neurogenesis, and learning and memory is the small number of investigated cytokines. Existing concepts are based on data from just three proinflammatory cytokines: interleukin-1 beta, interleukin-6, and tumor necrosis factor-alpha. The amount of information in the literature on the functional role of antiinflammatory cytokines in the mechanisms of synaptic plasticity and cognitive functions of mature mammalian brain is dismally low. However, they are of principle importance for understanding the mechanisms of local information processing in the brain, since they modulate the activity of individual cells and local neural networks, being able to reconstruct the processes of synaptic plasticity and intercellular communication, in general, depending on the local ratio of the levels of different cytokines in certain areas of the brain. Understanding the functional role of cytokines in cellular mechanisms of information processing and storage in the brain would allow developing preventive and therapeutic means for the treatment of neuropathologies related to impairment of these mechanisms.

  7. Circadian clocks, rhythmic synaptic plasticity and the sleep-wake cycle in zebrafish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elbaz, Idan; Foulkes, Nicholas S; Gothilf, Yoav; Appelbaum, Lior

    2013-01-01

    The circadian clock and homeostatic processes are fundamental mechanisms that regulate sleep. Surprisingly, despite decades of research, we still do not know why we sleep. Intriguing hypotheses suggest that sleep regulates synaptic plasticity and consequently has a beneficial role in learning and memory. However, direct evidence is still limited and the molecular regulatory mechanisms remain unclear. The zebrafish provides a powerful vertebrate model system that enables simple genetic manipulation, imaging of neuronal circuits and synapses in living animals, and the monitoring of behavioral performance during day and night. Thus, the zebrafish has become an attractive model to study circadian and homeostatic processes that regulate sleep. Zebrafish clock- and sleep-related genes have been cloned, neuronal circuits that exhibit circadian rhythms of activity and synaptic plasticity have been studied, and rhythmic behavioral outputs have been characterized. Integration of this data could lead to a better understanding of sleep regulation. Here, we review the progress of circadian clock and sleep studies in zebrafish with special emphasis on the genetic and neuroendocrine mechanisms that regulate rhythms of melatonin secretion, structural synaptic plasticity, locomotor activity and sleep.

  8. Effects of Exercise Intensity on Spatial Memory Performance and Hippocampal Synaptic Plasticity in Transient Brain Ischemic Rats

    OpenAIRE

    Pei-Cheng Shih; Yea-Ru Yang; Ray-Yau Wang

    2013-01-01

    Memory impairment is commonly noted in stroke survivors, and can lead to delay of functional recovery. Exercise has been proved to improve memory in adult healthy subjects. Such beneficial effects are often suggested to relate to hippocampal synaptic plasticity, which is important for memory processing. Previous evidence showed that in normal rats, low intensity exercise can improve synaptic plasticity better than high intensity exercise. However, the effects of exercise intensities on hippoc...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xanthippi Konstantoudaki

    2014-03-01

    , we tested whether synaptic plasticity properties of intra-cortical layer II synapses are affected. In adult control mice, tetanic stimulation results in long-term potentiation that lasts at least 50 min (Konstantoudaki et al, 2013. In control mice of the age tested in this study (PD 20-30, LTP could not be induced with the same stimulation. However, we find that Rac1 KO mice do express long-term potentiation. We next studied the dendritic morphology of layer II neurons in the prefrontal cortex, in an effort to identify the mechanism by which Rac1 KO mice exhibit LTP, while the control mice of the same age do not. For this, we stained mouse brains of Rac1 KO and Rac1 heterozygous mice with the Golgi-Cox method. We analyzed the number of secondary apical dendrites, their thickness, as well as the number of spines. We find that the dendrites of pyramidal neurons of Rac1 KO mice have decreased thickness and increased number of spines compared to pyramidal neurons from Rac1 heterozygous mice. These findings could also provide a mechanistic explanation for the presence of LTP in Rac1 KO mice. In conclusion, we find that decreased inhibition during development alters the morphological and functional characteristics of pyramidal neurons in layer II prefrontal cortex of mice. These alterations could provide a cellular substrate for emotional and cognitive dysfunctions present in these mice (Konstantoudaki et al, 2012.

  10. Late onset deficits in synaptic plasticity in the valproic acid rat model of autism

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henry Giles Stratten Martin

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Valproic acid (VPA is a frequently used drug in the treatment of epilepsy, bipolar disorders and migraines; however it is also a potent teratogen. Prenatal exposure increases the risk of childhood malformations and can result in cognitive deficits. In rodents in utero exposure to VPA also causes neurodevelopmental abnormalities and is an important model of autism. In early postnatal life VPA exposed rat pups show changes in medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC physiology and synaptic connectivity. Specifically, principal neurons show decreased excitability but increased local connectivity, coupled with an increase in long-term potentiation (LTP due to an up-regulation of NMDA receptor (NMDAR expression. However recent evidence suggests compensatory homeostatic mechanisms lead to normalization of synaptic NMDA receptors during later postnatal development. Here we have extended study of mPFC synaptic physiology into adulthood to better understand the longitudinal consequences of early developmental abnormalities in VPA exposed rats. Surprisingly in contrast to early postnatal life and adolescence, we find that adult VPA exposed rats show reduced synaptic function. Both NMDAR mediated currents and LTP are lower in adult VPA rats, although spontaneous activity and endocannabinoid dependent long-term depression are normal. We conclude that rather than correcting, synaptic abnormalities persist into adulthood in VPA exposed rats, although a quite different synaptic phenotype is present. This switch from hyper to hypo function in mPFC may be linked to some of the neurodevelopmental defects found in prenatal VPA exposure and autism spectrum disorders in general.

  11. Differential effects of duration of sleep fragmentation on spatial learning and synaptic plasticity in pubertal mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wallace, Eli; Kim, Do Young; Kim, Kye-Min; Chen, Stephanie; Blair Braden, B; Williams, Jeremy; Jasso, Kalene; Garcia, Alex; Rho, Jong M; Bimonte-Nelson, Heather; Maganti, Rama

    2015-07-30

    To examine the differential effects of acute and chronic sleep fragmentation (SF) on spatial learning and memory, and hippocampal long-term potentiation (LTP) in pubertal mice. Two studies were performed during which adolescent C57/Bl6 mice were subjected to acute-SF 24h a day × 3 days or chronic-SF for 12h a day × 2 weeks using a programmable rotating lever that provides tactile stimulus with controls housed in similar cages. Spatial learning and memory was examined using the Morris water maze, and long-term potentiation (LTP) was evaluated after stimulation of Schaffer collaterals in CA1 hippocampus post SF. Actigraphy was used during the period of SF to monitor rest-activity patterns. Electroencephalographic (EEG) recordings were acquired for analysis of vigilance state patterns and delta-power. Serum corticosterone was measured to assess stress levels. Acute-SF via tactile stimulation negatively impacted spatial learning, as well as LTP maintenance, compared to controls with no tactile stimulation. While actigraphy showed significantly increased motor activity during SF in both groups, EEG data indicated that overall sleep efficiency did not differ between baseline and SF days, but significant increases in number of wakeful bouts and decreases in average NREM and REM bout lengths were seen during lights-on. Acute sleep fragmentation did not impact corticosterone levels. The current results indicate that, during development in pubertal mice, acute-SF for 24h a day × 3 days negatively impacted spatial learning and synaptic plasticity. Further studies are needed to determine if any inherent long-term homeostatic mechanisms in the adolescent brain afford greater resistance to the deleterious effects of chronic-SF. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. The Many Forms and Functions of Long Term Plasticity at GABAergic Synapses

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arianna Maffei

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available On February 12th 1973, Bliss and Lomo submitted their findings on activity-dependent plasticity of glutamatergic synapses. After this groundbreaking discovery, long-term potentiation (LTP and depression (LTD gained center stage in the study of learning, memory, and experience-dependent refinement of neural circuits. While LTP and LTD are extensively studied and their relevance to brain function is widely accepted, new experimental and theoretical work recently demonstrates that brain development and function relies on additional forms of plasticity, some of which occur at nonglutamatergic synapses. The strength of GABAergic synapses is modulated by activity, and new functions for inhibitory synaptic plasticity are emerging. Together with excitatory neurons, inhibitory neurons shape the excitability and dynamic range of neural circuits. Thus, the understanding of inhibitory synaptic plasticity is crucial to fully comprehend the physiology of brain circuits. Here, I will review recent findings about plasticity at GABAergic synapses and discuss how it may contribute to circuit function.

  13. Novel Insights into the Physiological Function of the APP (Gene) Family and Its Proteolytic Fragments in Synaptic Plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ludewig, Susann; Korte, Martin

    2017-01-01

    The amyloid precursor protein (APP) is well known to be involved in the pathophysiology of Alzheimer's disease (AD) via its cleavage product amyloid ß (Aß). However, the physiological role of APP, its various proteolytic products and the amyloid precursor-like proteins 1 and 2 (APLP1/2) are still not fully clarified. Interestingly, it has been shown that learning and memory processes represented by functional and structural changes at synapses are altered in different APP and APLP1/2 mouse mutants. In addition, APP and its fragments are implicated in regulating synaptic strength further reinforcing their modulatory role at the synapse. While APLP2 and APP are functionally redundant, the exclusively CNS expressed APLP1, might have individual roles within the synaptic network. The proteolytic product of non-amyloidogenic APP processing, APPsα, emerged as a neurotrophic peptide that facilitates long-term potentiation (LTP) and restores impairments occurring with age. Interestingly, the newly discovered η-secretase cleavage product, An-α acts in the opposite direction, namely decreasing LTP. In this review we summarize recent findings with emphasis on the physiological role of the APP gene family and its proteolytic products on synaptic function and plasticity, especially during processes of hippocampal LTP. Therefore, we focus on literature that provide electrophysiological data by using different mutant mouse strains either lacking full-length or parts of the APP proteins or that utilized secretase inhibitors as well as secreted APP fragments. PMID:28163673

  14. Nogo Receptor Signaling Restricts Adult Neural Plasticity by Limiting Synaptic AMPA Receptor Delivery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jitsuki, Susumu; Nakajima, Waki; Takemoto, Kiwamu; Sano, Akane; Tada, Hirobumi; Takahashi-Jitsuki, Aoi; Takahashi, Takuya

    2016-01-01

    Experience-dependent plasticity is limited in the adult brain, and its molecular and cellular mechanisms are poorly understood. Removal of the myelin-inhibiting signaling protein, Nogo receptor (NgR1), restores adult neural plasticity. Here we found that, in NgR1-deficient mice, whisker experience-driven synaptic α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionic acid receptor (AMPAR) insertion in the barrel cortex, which is normally complete by 2 weeks after birth, lasts into adulthood. In vivo live imaging by two-photon microscopy revealed more AMPAR on the surface of spines in the adult barrel cortex of NgR1-deficient than on those of wild-type (WT) mice. Furthermore, we observed that whisker stimulation produced new spines in the adult barrel cortex of mutant but not WT mice, and that the newly synthesized spines contained surface AMPAR. These results suggest that Nogo signaling limits plasticity by restricting synaptic AMPAR delivery in coordination with anatomical plasticity. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press.

  15. Experience-Dependent Synaptic Plasticity in V1 Occurs without Microglial CX3CR1.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schecter, Rachel W; Maher, Erin E; Welsh, Christina A; Stevens, Beth; Erisir, Alev; Bear, Mark F

    2017-11-01

    Brief monocular deprivation (MD) shifts ocular dominance and reduces the density of thalamic synapses in layer 4 of the mouse primary visual cortex (V1). We found that microglial lysosome content is also increased as a result of MD. Previous studies have shown that the microglial fractalkine receptor CX3CR1 is involved in synaptic development and hippocampal plasticity. We therefore tested the hypothesis that neuron-to-microglial communication via CX3CR1 is an essential component of visual cortical development and plasticity in male mice. Our data show that CX3CR1 is not required for normal development of V1 responses to visual stimulation, multiple forms of experience-dependent plasticity, or the synapse loss that accompanies MD in layer 4. By ruling out an essential role for fractalkine signaling, our study narrows the search for understanding how microglia respond to active synapse modification in the visual cortex. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Microglia in the visual cortex respond to monocular deprivation with increased lysosome content, but signaling through the fractalkine receptor CX3CR1 is not an essential component in the mechanisms of visual cortical development or experience-dependent synaptic plasticity. Copyright © 2017 the authors 0270-6474/17/3710541-13$15.00/0.

  16. Striatal synaptic dysfunction and hippocampal plasticity deficits in the Hu97/18 mouse model of Huntington disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karolina Kolodziejczyk

    Full Text Available Huntington disease (HD is a fatal neurodegenerative disorder caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the gene (HTT encoding the huntingtin protein (HTT. This mutation leads to multiple cellular and synaptic alterations that are mimicked in many current HD animal models. However, the most commonly used, well-characterized HD models do not accurately reproduce the genetics of human disease. Recently, a new 'humanized' mouse model, termed Hu97/18, has been developed that genetically recapitulates human HD, including two human HTT alleles, no mouse Hdh alleles and heterozygosity of the HD mutation. Previously, behavioral and neuropathological testing in Hu97/18 mice revealed many features of HD, yet no electrophysiological measures were employed to investigate possible synaptic alterations. Here, we describe electrophysiological changes in the striatum and hippocampus of the Hu97/18 mice. At 9 months of age, a stage when cognitive deficits are fully developed and motor dysfunction is also evident, Hu97/18 striatal spiny projection neurons (SPNs exhibited small changes in membrane properties and lower amplitude and frequency of spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents (sEPSCs; however, release probability from presynaptic terminals was unaltered. Strikingly, these mice also exhibited a profound deficiency in long-term potentiation (LTP at CA3-to-CA1 synapses. In contrast, at 6 months of age we found only subtle alterations in SPN synaptic transmission, while 3-month old animals did not display any electrophysiologically detectable changes in the striatum and CA1 LTP was intact. Together, these data reveal robust, progressive deficits in synaptic function and plasticity in Hu97/18 mice, consistent with previously reported behavioral abnormalities, and suggest an optimal age (9 months for future electrophysiological assessment in preclinical studies of HD.

  17. Subclinical Doses of ATP-Sensitive Potassium Channel Modulators Prevent Alterations in Memory and Synaptic Plasticity Induced by Amyloid-β.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salgado-Puga, Karla; Rodríguez-Colorado, Javier; Prado-Alcalá, Roberto A; Peña-Ortega, Fernando

    2017-01-01

    In addition to coupling cell metabolism and excitability, ATP-sensitive potassium channels (KATP) are involved in neural function and plasticity. Moreover, alterations in KATP activity and expression have been observed in Alzheimer's disease (AD) and during amyloid-β (Aβ)-induced pathology. Thus, we tested whether KATP modulators can influence Aβ-induced deleterious effects on memory, hippocampal network function, and plasticity. We found that treating animals with subclinical doses (those that did not change glycemia) of a KATP blocker (Tolbutamide) or a KATP opener (Diazoxide) differentially restrained Aβ-induced memory deficit, hippocampal network activity inhibition, and long-term synaptic plasticity unbalance (i.e., inhibition of LTP and promotion of LTD). We found that the protective effect of Tolbutamide against Aβ-induced memory deficit was strong and correlated with the reestablishment of synaptic plasticity balance, whereas Diazoxide treatment produced a mild protection against Aβ-induced memory deficit, which was not related to a complete reestablishment of synaptic plasticity balance. Interestingly, treatment with both KATP modulators renders the hippocampus resistant to Aβ-induced inhibition of hippocampal network activity. These findings indicate that KATP are involved in Aβ-induced pathology and they heighten the potential role of KATP modulation as a plausible therapeutic strategy against AD.

  18. The role of additive neurogenesis and synaptic plasticity in a hippocampal memory model with grid-cell like input.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter A Appleby

    Full Text Available Recently, we presented a study of adult neurogenesis in a simplified hippocampal memory model. The network was required to encode and decode memory patterns despite changing input statistics. We showed that additive neurogenesis was a more effective adaptation strategy compared to neuronal turnover and conventional synaptic plasticity as it allowed the network to respond to changes in the input statistics while preserving representations of earlier environments. Here we extend our model to include realistic, spatially driven input firing patterns in the form of grid cells in the entorhinal cortex. We compare network performance across a sequence of spatial environments using three distinct adaptation strategies: conventional synaptic plasticity, where the network is of fixed size but the connectivity is plastic; neuronal turnover, where the network is of fixed size but units in the network may die and be replaced; and additive neurogenesis, where the network starts out with fewer initial units but grows over time. We confirm that additive neurogenesis is a superior adaptation strategy when using realistic, spatially structured input patterns. We then show that a more biologically plausible neurogenesis rule that incorporates cell death and enhanced plasticity of new granule cells has an overall performance significantly better than any one of the three individual strategies operating alone. This adaptation rule can be tailored to maximise performance of the network when operating as either a short- or long-term memory store. We also examine the time course of adult neurogenesis over the lifetime of an animal raised under different hypothetical rearing conditions. These growth profiles have several distinct features that form a theoretical prediction that could be tested experimentally. Finally, we show that place cells can emerge and refine in a realistic manner in our model as a direct result of the sparsification performed by the dentate gyrus

  19. Electroacupuncture Regulates Hippocampal Synaptic Plasticity via miR-134-Mediated LIMK1 Function in Rats with Ischemic Stroke.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Weilin; Wu, Jie; Huang, Jia; Zhuo, Peiyuan; Lin, Yunjiao; Wang, Lulu; Lin, Ruhui; Chen, Lidian; Tao, Jing

    2017-01-01

    MircoRNAs (miRs) have been implicated in learning and memory, by regulating LIM domain kinase (LIMK1) to induce synaptic-dendritic plasticity. The study aimed to investigate whether miRNAs/LIMK1 signaling was involved in electroacupuncture- (EA-) mediated synaptic-dendritic plasticity in a rat model of middle cerebral artery occlusion induced cognitive deficit (MICD). Compared to untreatment or non-acupoint-EA treatment, EA at DU20 and DU24 acupoints could shorten escape latency and increase the frequency of crossing platform in Morris water maze test. T2-weighted imaging showed that the MICD rat brain lesions were located in cortex, hippocampus, corpus striatum, and thalamus regions and injured volumes were reduced after EA. Furthermore, we found that the density of dendritic spine and the number of synapses in the hippocampal CA1 pyramidal cells were obviously reduced at Day 14 after MICD. However, synaptic-dendritic loss could be rescued after EA. Moreover, the synaptic-dendritic plasticity was associated with increases of the total LIMK1 and phospho-LIMK1 levels in hippocampal CA1 region, wherein EA decreased the expression of miR-134, negatively regulating LIMK1 to enhance synaptic-dendritic plasticity. Therefore, miR-134-mediated LIMK1 was involved in EA-induced hippocampal synaptic plasticity, which served as a contributor to improving learning and memory during the recovery stage of ischemic stroke.

  20. Alzheimer’s disease Aβ assemblies mediating rapid disruption of synaptic plasticity and memory

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    Klyubin Igor

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Alzheimer’s disease (AD is characterized by episodic memory impairment that often precedes clinical diagnosis by many years. Probing the mechanisms of such impairment may provide much needed means of diagnosis and therapeutic intervention at an early, pre-dementia, stage. Prior to the onset of significant neurodegeneration, the structural and functional integrity of synapses in mnemonic circuitry is severely compromised in the presence of amyloidosis. This review examines recent evidence evaluating the role of amyloid-ß protein (Aβ in causing rapid disruption of synaptic plasticity and memory impairment. We evaluate the relative importance of different sizes and conformations of Aβ, including monomer, oligomer, protofibril and fibril. We pay particular attention to recent controversies over the relevance to the pathophysiology of AD of different water soluble Aβ aggregates and the importance of cellular prion protein in mediating their effects. Current data are consistent with the view that both low-n oligomers and larger soluble assemblies present in AD brain, some of them via a direct interaction with cellular prion protein, cause synaptic memory failure. At the two extremes of aggregation, monomers and fibrils appear to act in vivo both as sources and sinks of certain metastable conformations of soluble aggregates that powerfully disrupt synaptic plasticity. The same principle appears to apply to other synaptotoxic amyloidogenic proteins including tau, α-synuclein and prion protein.

  1. Synaptic plasticity through activation of GluA3-containing AMPA-receptors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gutierrez-Castellanos, Nicolas; Reinders, Niels R; van Huijstee, Aile N; Xiong, Hui; Lodder, Tessa R

    2017-01-01

    Excitatory synaptic transmission is mediated by AMPA-type glutamate receptors (AMPARs). In CA1 pyramidal neurons of the hippocampus two types of AMPARs predominate: those that contain subunits GluA1 and GluA2 (GluA1/2), and those that contain GluA2 and GluA3 (GluA2/3). Whereas subunits GluA1 and GluA2 have been extensively studied, the contribution of GluA3 to synapse physiology has remained unclear. Here we show in mice that GluA2/3s are in a low-conductance state under basal conditions, and although present at synapses they contribute little to synaptic currents. When intracellular cyclic AMP (cAMP) levels rise, GluA2/3 channels shift to a high-conductance state, leading to synaptic potentiation. This cAMP-driven synaptic potentiation requires the activation of both protein kinase A (PKA) and the GTPase Ras, and is induced upon the activation of β-adrenergic receptors. Together, these experiments reveal a novel type of plasticity at CA1 hippocampal synapses that is expressed by the activation of GluA3-containing AMPARs. PMID:28762944

  2. Neto1 Is a Novel CUB-Domain NMDA Receptor–Interacting Protein Required for Synaptic Plasticity and Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szilard, Rachel K; Sertié, Andréa; Kanisek, Marijana; Clapcote, Steven J; Lipina, Tatiana; Kalia, Lorraine V; Joo, Daisy; McKerlie, Colin; Cortez, Miguel; Roder, John C; Salter, Michael W; McInnes, Roderick R

    2009-01-01

    The N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR), a major excitatory ligand-gated ion channel in the central nervous system (CNS), is a principal mediator of synaptic plasticity. Here we report that neuropilin tolloid-like 1 (Neto1), a complement C1r/C1s, Uegf, Bmp1 (CUB) domain-containing transmembrane protein, is a novel component of the NMDAR complex critical for maintaining the abundance of NR2A-containing NMDARs in the postsynaptic density. Neto1-null mice have depressed long-term potentiation (LTP) at Schaffer collateral-CA1 synapses, with the subunit dependency of LTP induction switching from the normal predominance of NR2A- to NR2B-NMDARs. NMDAR-dependent spatial learning and memory is depressed in Neto1-null mice, indicating that Neto1 regulates NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic plasticity and cognition. Remarkably, we also found that the deficits in LTP, learning, and memory in Neto1-null mice were rescued by the ampakine CX546 at doses without effect in wild-type. Together, our results establish the principle that auxiliary proteins are required for the normal abundance of NMDAR subunits at synapses, and demonstrate that an inherited learning defect can be rescued pharmacologically, a finding with therapeutic implications for humans. PMID:19243221

  3. Neto1 is a novel CUB-domain NMDA receptor-interacting protein required for synaptic plasticity and learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ng, David; Pitcher, Graham M; Szilard, Rachel K; Sertié, Andréa; Kanisek, Marijana; Clapcote, Steven J; Lipina, Tatiana; Kalia, Lorraine V; Joo, Daisy; McKerlie, Colin; Cortez, Miguel; Roder, John C; Salter, Michael W; McInnes, Roderick R

    2009-02-24

    The N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR), a major excitatory ligand-gated ion channel in the central nervous system (CNS), is a principal mediator of synaptic plasticity. Here we report that neuropilin tolloid-like 1 (Neto1), a complement C1r/C1s, Uegf, Bmp1 (CUB) domain-containing transmembrane protein, is a novel component of the NMDAR complex critical for maintaining the abundance of NR2A-containing NMDARs in the postsynaptic density. Neto1-null mice have depressed long-term potentiation (LTP) at Schaffer collateral-CA1 synapses, with the subunit dependency of LTP induction switching from the normal predominance of NR2A- to NR2B-NMDARs. NMDAR-dependent spatial learning and memory is depressed in Neto1-null mice, indicating that Neto1 regulates NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic plasticity and cognition. Remarkably, we also found that the deficits in LTP, learning, and memory in Neto1-null mice were rescued by the ampakine CX546 at doses without effect in wild-type. Together, our results establish the principle that auxiliary proteins are required for the normal abundance of NMDAR subunits at synapses, and demonstrate that an inherited learning defect can be rescued pharmacologically, a finding with therapeutic implications for humans.

  4. Neto1 is a novel CUB-domain NMDA receptor-interacting protein required for synaptic plasticity and learning.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Ng

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available The N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR, a major excitatory ligand-gated ion channel in the central nervous system (CNS, is a principal mediator of synaptic plasticity. Here we report that neuropilin tolloid-like 1 (Neto1, a complement C1r/C1s, Uegf, Bmp1 (CUB domain-containing transmembrane protein, is a novel component of the NMDAR complex critical for maintaining the abundance of NR2A-containing NMDARs in the postsynaptic density. Neto1-null mice have depressed long-term potentiation (LTP at Schaffer collateral-CA1 synapses, with the subunit dependency of LTP induction switching from the normal predominance of NR2A- to NR2B-NMDARs. NMDAR-dependent spatial learning and memory is depressed in Neto1-null mice, indicating that Neto1 regulates NMDA receptor-dependent synaptic plasticity and cognition. Remarkably, we also found that the deficits in LTP, learning, and memory in Neto1-null mice were rescued by the ampakine CX546 at doses without effect in wild-type. Together, our results establish the principle that auxiliary proteins are required for the normal abundance of NMDAR subunits at synapses, and demonstrate that an inherited learning defect can be rescued pharmacologically, a finding with therapeutic implications for humans.

  5. Regulation of hippocampal synaptic plasticity thresholds and changes in exploratory and learning behavior in dominant negative NPR-B mutant rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gleb eBarmashenko

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The second messenger cyclic GMP affects synaptic transmission and modulates synaptic plasticity and certain types of learning and memory processes. The impact of the natriuretic peptide receptor B (NPR-B and its ligand C-type natriuretic peptide (CNP, one of several cGMP producing signalling systems, on hippocampal synaptic plasticity and learning is, however, less well understood. We have previously shown that the NPR-B ligand CNP increases the magnitude of long-term depression (LTD in hippocampal area CA1, while reducing the induction of long-term potentiation (LTP. We have extended this line of research to show that bidirectional plasticity is affected in the opposite way in rats expressing a dominant-negative mutant of NPR-B (NSE-NPR-BdeltaKC lacking the intracellular guanylyl cyclase domain under control of a promoter for neuron-specific enolase. The brain cells of these transgenic rats express functional dimers of the NPR-B receptor containing the dominant-negative NPR-BdeltaKC mutant, and therefore show decreased CNP-stimulated cGMP-production in brain membranes. The NPR-B transgenic rats display enhanced LTP but reduced LTD in hippocampal slices. When the frequency-dependence of synaptic modification to afferent stimulation in the range of 1-100 Hz was assessed in transgenic rats the threshold for LTP induction was raised, but LTD induction was facilitated. In parallel, NPR-BdeltaKC rats exhibited an enhancement in exploratory and learning behavior. These results indicate that bidirectional plasticity and learning and memory mechanism are affected in transgenic rats expressing a dominant-negative mutant of NPR-B. Our data substantiate the hypothesis that NPR-B-dependent cGMP signalling has a modulatory role for synaptic information storage and learning.

  6. Stimulation of the Hippocampal POMC/MC4R Circuit Alleviates Synaptic Plasticity Impairment in an Alzheimer’s Disease Model

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    Yang Shen

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Hippocampal synaptic plasticity is modulated by neuropeptides, the disruption of which might contribute to cognitive deficits observed in Alzheimer’s disease (AD. Although pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC-derived neuropeptides and melanocortin 4 receptor (MC4R are implicated in hippocampus-dependent synaptic plasticity, how the POMC/MC4R system functions in the hippocampus and its role in synaptic dysfunction in AD are largely unknown. Here, we mapped a functional POMC circuit in the mouse hippocampus, wherein POMC neurons in the cornu ammonis 3 (CA3 activate MC4R in the CA1. Suppression of hippocampal MC4R activity in the APP/PS1 transgenic mouse model of AD exacerbates long-term potentiation impairment, which is alleviated by the replenishment of hippocampal POMC/MC4R activity or activation of hippocampal MC4R-coupled Gs signaling. Importantly, MC4R activation rescues amyloid-β-induced synaptic dysfunction via a Gs/cyclic AMP (cAMP/PKA/cAMP-response element binding protein (CREB-dependent mechanism. Hence, disruption of this hippocampal POMC/MC4R circuit might contribute to synaptic dysfunction observed in AD, revealing a potential therapeutic target for the disease.

  7. Tcf4 Regulates Synaptic Plasticity, DNA Methylation, and Memory Function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew J. Kennedy

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Human haploinsufficiency of the transcription factor Tcf4 leads to a rare autism spectrum disorder called Pitt-Hopkins syndrome (PTHS, which is associated with severe language impairment and development delay. Here, we demonstrate that Tcf4 haploinsufficient mice have deficits in social interaction, ultrasonic vocalization, prepulse inhibition, and spatial and associative learning and memory. Despite learning deficits, Tcf4(+/− mice have enhanced long-term potentiation in the CA1 area of the hippocampus. In translationally oriented studies, we found that small-molecule HDAC inhibitors normalized hippocampal LTP and memory recall. A comprehensive set of next-generation sequencing experiments of hippocampal mRNA and methylated DNA isolated from Tcf4-deficient and WT mice before or shortly after experiential learning, with or without administration of vorinostat, identified “memory-associated” genes modulated by HDAC inhibition and dysregulated by Tcf4 haploinsufficiency. Finally, we observed that Hdac2 isoform-selective knockdown was sufficient to rescue memory deficits in Tcf4(+/− mice.

  8. Protein Phosphatase 1-Dependent Transcriptional Programs for Long-Term Memory and Plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graff, Johannes; Koshibu, Kyoko; Jouvenceau, Anne; Dutar, Patrick; Mansuy, Isabelle M.

    2010-01-01

    Gene transcription is essential for the establishment and the maintenance of long-term memory (LTM) and for long-lasting forms of synaptic plasticity. The molecular mechanisms that control gene transcription in neuronal cells are complex and recruit multiple signaling pathways in the cytoplasm and the nucleus. Protein kinases (PKs) and…

  9. Learning and retrieval behavior in recurrent neural networks with pre-synaptic dependent homeostatic plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mizusaki, Beatriz E. P.; Agnes, Everton J.; Erichsen, Rubem; Brunnet, Leonardo G.

    2017-08-01

    The plastic character of brain synapses is considered to be one of the foundations for the formation of memories. There are numerous kinds of such phenomenon currently described in the literature, but their role in the development of information pathways in neural networks with recurrent architectures is still not completely clear. In this paper we study the role of an activity-based process, called pre-synaptic dependent homeostatic scaling, in the organization of networks that yield precise-timed spiking patterns. It encodes spatio-temporal information in the synaptic weights as it associates a learned input with a specific response. We introduce a correlation measure to evaluate the precision of the spiking patterns and explore the effects of different inhibitory interactions and learning parameters. We find that large learning periods are important in order to improve the network learning capacity and discuss this ability in the presence of distinct inhibitory currents.

  10. Chelation of hippocampal zinc enhances long-term potentiation and synaptic tagging/capture in CA1 pyramidal neurons of aged rats: implications to aging and memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shetty, Mahesh Shivarama; Sharma, Mahima; Sajikumar, Sreedharan

    2017-02-01

    Aging is associated with decline in cognitive functions, prominently in the memory consolidation and association capabilities. Hippocampus plays a crucial role in the formation and maintenance of long-term associative memories, and a significant body of evidence shows that impairments in hippocampal function correlate with aging-related memory loss. A number of studies have implicated alterations in hippocampal synaptic plasticity, such as long-term potentiation (LTP), in age-related cognitive decline although exact mechanisms underlying are not completely clear. Zinc deficiency and the resultant adverse effects on cognition have been well studied. However, the role of excess of zinc in synaptic plasticity, especially in aging, is not addressed well. Here, we have investigated the hippocampal zinc levels and the impairments in synaptic plasticity, such as LTP and synaptic tagging and capture (STC), in the CA1 region of acute hippocampal slices from 82- to 84-week-old male Wistar rats. We report increased zinc levels in the hippocampus of aged rats and also deficits in the tetani-induced and dopaminergic agonist-induced late-LTP and STC. The observed deficits in synaptic plasticity were restored upon chelation of zinc using a cell-permeable chelator. These data suggest that functional plasticity and associativity can be successfully established in aged neural networks by chelating zinc with cell-permeable chelating agents. © 2016 The Authors. Aging Cell published by the Anatomical Society and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  11. Neonatal Exposure to Low-Dose (1.2%) Sevoflurane Increases Rats' Hippocampal Neurogenesis and Synaptic Plasticity in Later Life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Xi; Zhou, Xue; Yang, Lu; Miao, Xu; Lu, Di-Han; Yang, Xiao-Yu; Zhou, Zhi-Bin; Kang, Wen-Bin; Chen, Ke-Yu; Zhou, Li-Hua; Feng, Xia

    2018-02-09

    The increasing usage of general anesthetics on young children and infants has drawn extensive attention to the effects of these drugs on cognitive function later in life. Recent animal studies have revealed improvement in hippocampus-dependent performance after lower concentrations of sevoflurane exposure. However, the long-term effects of low-dose sevoflurane on the developing brain remain elusive. On postnatal day (P) 7, rats were treated with 1.2% sevoflurane (1.2% sevo group), 2.4% sevoflurane (2.4% sevo group), and air control (C group) for 6 h. On P35-40, rats' hippocampus-dependent learning and memory was tested using the Morris water maze. Cognition-related and synapse-related proteins in the hippocampus were measured using Western blotting on P35. On the same day, neurogenesis and synapse ultrastructure were evaluated using immunofluorescence and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). On P35, the rats neonatally exposed to 1.2% sevoflurane showed better behavioral results than control rats, but not in the 2.4% sevo group. Exposure to 1.2% sevoflurane increased the number of 5'-bromo-2-deoxyuridine (BrdU)-positive cells in the dentate gyrus and improved both synaptic number and ultrastructure in the hippocampus. The expression levels of BDNF, TrkB, postsynaptic density (PSD)-95, and synaptophysin in the hippocampus were also increased in the 1.2% sevo group. In contrast, no significant changes in neurogenesis or synaptic plasticity were observed between the C group and the 2.4% sevo group on P35. These results showed that exposure of the developing brain to a low concentration of sevoflurane for 6 h could promote spatial learning and memory function, along with increased hippocampal neurogenesis and synaptic plasticity, in later life.

  12. Plasticity and mTOR: Towards Restoration of Impaired Synaptic Plasticity in mTOR-Related Neurogenetic Disorders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tanjala T. Gipson

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective. To review the recent literature on the clinical features, genetic mutations, neurobiology associated with dysregulation of mTOR (mammalian target of rapamycin, and clinical trials for tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC, neurofibromatosis-1 (NF1 and fragile X syndrome (FXS, and phosphatase and tensin homolog hamartoma syndromes (PTHS, which are neurogenetic disorders associated with abnormalities in synaptic plasticity and mTOR signaling. Methods. Pubmed and Clinicaltrials.gov were searched using specific search strategies. Results/Conclusions. Although traditionally thought of as irreversible disorders, significant scientific progress has been made in both humans and preclinical models to understand how pathologic features of these neurogenetic disorders can be reduced or reversed. This paper revealed significant similarities among the conditions. Not only do they share features of impaired synaptic plasticity and dysregulation of mTOR, but they also share clinical features—autism, intellectual disability, cutaneous lesions, and tumors. Although scientific advances towards discovery of effective treatment in some disorders have outpaced others, progress in understanding the signaling pathways that connect the entire group indicates that the lesser known disorders will become treatable as well.

  13. Plasticity and mTOR: towards restoration of impaired synaptic plasticity in mTOR-related neurogenetic disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gipson, Tanjala T; Johnston, Michael V

    2012-01-01

    To review the recent literature on the clinical features, genetic mutations, neurobiology associated with dysregulation of mTOR (mammalian target of rapamycin), and clinical trials for tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC), neurofibromatosis-1 (NF1) and fragile X syndrome (FXS), and phosphatase and tensin homolog hamartoma syndromes (PTHS), which are neurogenetic disorders associated with abnormalities in synaptic plasticity and mTOR signaling. Pubmed and Clinicaltrials.gov were searched using specific search strategies. Although traditionally thought of as irreversible disorders, significant scientific progress has been made in both humans and preclinical models to understand how pathologic features of these neurogenetic disorders can be reduced or reversed. This paper revealed significant similarities among the conditions. Not only do they share features of impaired synaptic plasticity and dysregulation of mTOR, but they also share clinical features--autism, intellectual disability, cutaneous lesions, and tumors. Although scientific advances towards discovery of effective treatment in some disorders have outpaced others, progress in understanding the signaling pathways that connect the entire group indicates that the lesser known disorders will become treatable as well.

  14. Regional-specific effects of ovarian hormone loss on synaptic plasticity in adult human APOE targeted replacement mice.

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    Rebecca C Klein

    Full Text Available The human apolipoprotein ε4 allele (APOE4 has been implicated as one of the strongest genetic risk factors associated with Alzheimer's disease (AD and in influencing normal cognitive functioning. Previous studies have demonstrated that mice expressing human apoE4 display deficits in behavioral and neurophysiological outcomes compared to those with apoE3. Ovarian hormones have also been shown to be important in modulating synaptic processes underlying cognitive function, yet little is known about how their effects are influenced by apoE. In the current study, female adult human APOE targeted replacement (TR mice were utilized to examine the effects of human APOE genotype and long-term ovarian hormone loss on synaptic plasticity in limbic regions by measuring dendritic spine density and electrophysiological function. No significant genotype differences were observed on any outcomes within intact mice. However, there was a significant main effect of genotype on total spine density in apical dendrites in the hippocampus, with post-hoc t-tests revealing a significant reduction in spine density in apoE3 ovariectomized (OVX mice compared to sham operated mice. There was also a significant main effect of OVX on the magnitude of LTP, with post-hoc t-tests revealing a decrease in apoE3 OVX mice relative to sham. In contrast, apoE4 OVX mice showed increased synaptic activity relative to sham. In the lateral amygdala, there was a significant increase in total spine density in apoE4 OVX mice relative to sham. This increase in spine density was consistent with a significant increase in spontaneous excitatory activity in apoE4 OVX mice. These findings suggest that ovarian hormones differentially modulate synaptic integrity in an apoE-dependent manner within brain regions that are susceptible to neurophysiological dysfunction associated with AD.

  15. Synaptic Plasticity and Memory: New Insights from Hippocampal Left-Right Asymmetries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El-Gaby, Mohamady; Shipton, Olivia A; Paulsen, Ole

    2015-10-01

    All synapses are not the same. They differ in their morphology, molecular constituents, and malleability. A striking left-right asymmetry in the distribution of different types of synapse was recently uncovered at the CA3-CA1 projection in the mouse hippocampus, whereby afferents from the CA3 in the left hemisphere innervate small, highly plastic synapses on the apical dendrites of CA1 pyramidal neurons, whereas those originating from the right CA3 target larger, more stable synapses. Activity-dependent modification of these synapses is thought to participate in circuit formation and remodeling during development, and further plastic changes may support memory encoding in adulthood. Therefore, exploiting the CA3-CA1 asymmetry provides a promising opportunity to investigate the roles that different types of synapse play in these fundamental properties of the CNS. Here we describe the discovery of these segregated synaptic populations in the mouse hippocampus, and discuss what we have already learnt about synaptic plasticity from this asymmetric arrangement. We then propose models for how the asymmetry could be generated during development, and how the adult hippocampus might use these distinct populations of synapses differentially during learning and memory. Finally, we outline the potential implications of this left-right asymmetry for human hippocampal function, as well as dysfunction in memory disorders such as Alzheimer's disease. © The Author(s) 2014.

  16. The role of extracellular proteolysis in synaptic plasticity of the central nervous system 

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    Anna Konopka

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available The extracellular matrix (ECM of the central nervous system has a specific structure and protein composition that are different from those in other organs. Today we know that the ECM not only provides physical scaffolding for the neurons and glia, but also actively modifies their functions. Over the last two decades, a growing body of research evidence has been collected, suggesting an important role of ECM proteolysis in synaptic plasticity of the brain. So far the majority of data concern two large families of proteases: the serine proteases and the matrix metalloproteinases. The members of these families are localized at the synapses, and are secreted into the extracellular space in an activity-dependent manner. The proteases remodel the local environment as well as influencing synapse structure and function. The structural modifications induced by proteases include shape and size changes, as well as synapse elimination, and synaptogenesis. The functional changes include modifications of receptor function in the postsynaptic part of the synapse, as well as the potentiation or depression of neurotransmitter secretion by the presynaptic site. The present review summarizes the current view on the role of extracellular proteolysis in the physiological synaptic plasticity underlying the phenomena of learning and memory, as well as in the pathological plasticity occurring during epileptogenesis or development of drug addiction. 

  17. Short-term plasticity and long-term potentiation mimicked in single inorganic synapses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ohno, Takeo; Hasegawa, Tsuyoshi; Tsuruoka, Tohru; Terabe, Kazuya; Gimzewski, James K.; Aono, Masakazu

    2011-08-01

    Memory is believed to occur in the human brain as a result of two types of synaptic plasticity: short-term plasticity (STP) and long-term potentiation (LTP; refs , , , ). In neuromorphic engineering, emulation of known neural behaviour has proven to be difficult to implement in software because of the highly complex interconnected nature of thought processes. Here we report the discovery of a Ag2S inorganic synapse, which emulates the synaptic functions of both STP and LTP characteristics through the use of input pulse repetition time. The structure known as an atomic switch, operating at critical voltages, stores information as STP with a spontaneous decay of conductance level in response to intermittent input stimuli, whereas frequent stimulation results in a transition to LTP. The Ag2S inorganic synapse has interesting characteristics with analogies to an individual biological synapse, and achieves dynamic memorization in a single device without the need of external preprogramming. A psychological model related to the process of memorizing and forgetting is also demonstrated using the inorganic synapses. Our Ag2S element indicates a breakthrough in mimicking synaptic behaviour essential for the further creation of artificial neural systems that emulate characteristics of human memory.

  18. Impaired bidirectional synaptic plasticity and procedural memory formation in striatum-specific cAMP response element-binding protein-deficient mice

    OpenAIRE

    Pittenger, Christopher; Fasano, Stefania; Mazzocchi-Jones, David Martin; Dunnett, Stephen Bruce; Kandel, Eric R.; Brambilla, Riccardo

    2006-01-01

    The striatum has a well documented role in procedural learning and memory. However, the synaptic and molecular mechanisms of acquisition and storage of this form of memory remain poorly understood. We examined procedural memory and plasticity in transgenic mice reversibly expressing a dominant-negative cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB) mutant in the dorsal striatum. In these transgenic mice, corticostriatal long-term potentiation and depression are abolished, indicating that CREB f...

  19. A Unifying Framework of Synaptic and Intrinsic Plasticity in Neural Populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leugering, Johannes; Pipa, Gordon

    2018-01-17

    A neuronal population is a computational unit that receives a multivariate, time-varying input signal and creates a related multivariate output. These neural signals are modeled as stochastic processes that transmit information in real time, subject to stochastic noise. In a stationary environment, where the input signals can be characterized by constant statistical properties, the systematic relationship between its input and output processes determines the computation carried out by a population. When these statistical characteristics unexpectedly change, the population needs to adapt to its new environment if it is to maintain stable operation. Based on the general concept of homeostatic plasticity, we propose a simple compositional model of adaptive networks that achieve invariance with regard to undesired changes in the statistical properties of their input signals and maintain outputs with well-defined joint statistics. To achieve such invariance, the network model combines two functionally distinct types of plasticity. An abstract stochastic process neuron model implements a generalized form of intrinsic plasticity that adapts marginal statistics, relying only on mechanisms locally confined within each neuron and operating continuously in time, while a simple form of Hebbian synaptic plasticity operates on synaptic connections, thus shaping the interrelation between neurons as captured by a copula function. The combined effect of both mechanisms allows a neuron population to discover invariant representations of its inputs that remain stable under a wide range of transformations (e.g., shifting, scaling and (affine linear) mixing). The probabilistic model of homeostatic adaptation on a population level as presented here allows us to isolate and study the individual and the interaction dynamics of both mechanisms of plasticity and could guide the future search for computationally beneficial types of adaptation.

  20. Nitric oxide signaling is recruited as a compensatory mechanism for sustaining synaptic plasticity in Alzheimer's disease mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chakroborty, Shreaya; Kim, Joyce; Schneider, Corinne; West, Anthony R; Stutzmann, Grace E

    2015-04-29

    Synaptic plasticity deficits are increasingly recognized as causing the memory impairments which define Alzheimer's disease (AD). In AD mouse models, evidence of abnormal synaptic function is present before the onset of cognitive deficits, and presents as increased synaptic depression revealed only when synaptic homeostasis is challenged, such as with suppression of ryanodine receptor (RyR)-evoked calcium signaling. Otherwise, at early disease stages, the synaptic physiology phenotype appears normal. This suggests compensatory mechanisms are recruited to maintain a functionally normal net output of the hippocampal circuit. A candidate calcium-regulated synaptic modulator is nitric oxide (NO), which acts presynaptically to boost vesicle release and glutamatergic transmission. Here we tested whether there is a feedforward cycle between the increased RyR calcium release seen in presymptomatic AD mice and aberrant NO signaling which augments synaptic plasticity. Using a combination of electrophysiological approaches, two-photon calcium imaging, and protein biochemistry in hippocampal tissue from presymptomatic 3xTg-AD and NonTg mice, we show that blocking NO synthesis results in markedly augmented synaptic depression mediated through presynaptic mechanisms in 3xTg-AD mice. Additionally, blocking NO reduces the augmented synaptically evoked dendritic calcium release mediated by enhanced RyR calcium release. This is accompanied by increased nNOS levels in the AD mice and is reversed upon normalization of RyR-evoked calcium release with chronic dantrolene treatment. Thus, recruitment of NO is serving a compensatory role to boost synaptic transmission and plasticity during early AD stages. However, NO's dual role in neuroprotection and neurodegeneration may convert to maladaptive functions as the disease progresses. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/356893-10$15.00/0.