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Trends in Neurosciences

Naomi P Visanji, Jonathan M Brotchie, Lorraine V Kalia, James B Koprich, Anurag Tandon, Joel C Watts, Anthony E Lang
In recent years, a new generation of animal models of Parkinson's disease (PD) based on ectopic expression, overexpression, or intracerebral injection of the protein α-synuclein have emerged. Critically, these models develop inclusions of aggregated α-synuclein and/or α-synuclein-mediated neuronal loss replicating the defining pathological hallmarks of PD and driving significant advances in the understanding of the pathogenic mechanisms underpinning PD. Here, we provide a comprehensive review of this new generation of animal models of PD, ranging from invertebrate to rodent to nonhuman primate...
October 21, 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
Igor Delvendahl, Stefan Hallermann
The speed of neuronal information processing depends on neuronal firing frequency. Here, we describe the evolutionary advantages and ubiquitous occurrence of high-frequency firing within the mammalian nervous system in general. The highest firing frequencies so far have been observed at the cerebellar mossy fiber to granule cell synapse. The mechanisms enabling high-frequency transmission at this synapse are reviewed and compared with other synapses. Finally, information coding of high-frequency signals at the mossy fiber synapse is discussed...
October 19, 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
Clive R Rosenthal, David Soto
Cortical regions as early as primary visual cortex have been implicated in recognition memory. Here, we outline the challenges that this presents for neurobiological accounts of recognition memory. We conclude that understanding the role of early visual cortex (EVC) in this process will require the use of protocols that mask stimuli from visual awareness.
October 14, 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
Herman Wolosker, Darrick T Balu, Joseph T Coyle
d-Serine modulates N-methyl d-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) and regulates synaptic plasticity, neurodevelopment, and learning and memory. However, the primary site of d-serine synthesis and release remains controversial, with some arguing that it is a gliotransmitter and others defining it as a neuronal cotransmitter. Results from several laboratories using different strategies now show that the biosynthetic enzyme of d-serine, serine racemase (SR), is expressed almost entirely by neurons, with few astrocytes appearing to contain d-serine...
October 11, 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
Raymond van Ee, Sander Van de Cruys, Luc J M Schlangen, Björn N S Vlaskamp
A daily rhythm that is not in synchrony with the environmental light-dark cycle (as in jetlag and shift work) is known to affect mood and health through an as yet unresolved neural mechanism. Here, we combine Bayesian probabilistic 'cue-conflict' theory with known physiology of the biological clock of the brain, entailing the insight that, for a functional pacemaker, it is sufficient to have two interacting units (reflecting environmental and internal time-of-day cues), without the need for an extra homuncular directing unit...
October 5, 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
Vincenzo Romei, Gregor Thut, Juha Silvanto
Progress in cognitive neuroscience relies on methodological developments to increase the specificity of knowledge obtained regarding brain function. For example, in functional neuroimaging the current trend is to study the type of information carried by brain regions rather than simply compare activation levels induced by task manipulations. In this context noninvasive transcranial brain stimulation (NTBS) in the study of cognitive functions may appear coarse and old fashioned in its conventional uses. However, in their multitude of parameters, and by coupling them with behavioral manipulations, NTBS protocols can reach the specificity of imaging techniques...
September 30, 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
J Hogeveen, C Salvi, J Grafman
'Emotional intelligence' (EI) is one of the most highly used psychological terms in popular nomenclature, yet its construct, divergent, and predictive validities are contentiously debated. Despite this debate, the EI construct is composed of a set of emotional abilities - recognizing emotional states in the self and others, using emotions to guide thought and behavior, understanding how emotions shape behavior, and emotion regulation - that undoubtedly influence important social and personal outcomes. In this review, evidence from human lesion studies is reviewed in order to provide insight into the necessary brain regions for each of these core emotional abilities...
October 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
Li Hu, Gian Domenico Iannetti
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
October 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
Winnie Wefelmeyer, Christopher J Puhl, Juan Burrone
Neurons in the brain are highly plastic, allowing an organism to learn and adapt to its environment. However, this ongoing plasticity is also inherently unstable, potentially leading to aberrant levels of circuit activity. Homeostatic forms of plasticity are thought to provide a means of controlling neuronal activity by avoiding extremes and allowing network stability. Recent work has shown that many of these homeostatic modifications change the structure of subcellular neuronal compartments, ranging from changes to synaptic inputs at both excitatory and inhibitory compartments to modulation of neuronal output through changes at the axon initial segment (AIS) and presynaptic terminals...
October 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
Flavia Valtorta, Fabio Benfenati, Federico Zara, Jacopo Meldolesi
In the past few years, proline-rich transmembrane protein (PRRT)2 has been identified as the causative gene for several paroxysmal neurological disorders. Recently, an important role of PRRT2 in synapse development and function has emerged. Knock down of the protein strongly impairs the formation of synaptic contacts and neurotransmitter release. At the nerve terminal, PRRT2 endows synaptic vesicle exocytosis with Ca(2+) sensitivity by interacting with proteins of the fusion complex and with the Ca(2+) sensors synaptotagmins (Syts)...
October 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
Bijan Pesaran, David J Freedman
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
October 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
Tiffany C Ho, Stephan J Sanders, Ian H Gotlib, Fumiko Hoeft
Neuroscientists are increasingly using advanced neuroimaging methods to elucidate the intergenerational transmission of human brain circuitry. This new line of work promises to shed light on the ontogeny of complex behavioral traits, including psychiatric disorders, and possible mechanisms of transmission. Here we highlight recent intergenerational neuroimaging studies and provide recommendations for future work.
October 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
Barry W Ache, Andrew M Hein, Yuriy V Bobkov, Jose C Principe
Behavioral evidence from phylogenetically diverse animals and from humans suggests that, by extracting temporal information inherent in the olfactory signal, olfaction is more involved in interpreting space and time than heretofore imagined. If this is the case, the olfactory system must have neural mechanisms capable of encoding time at intervals relevant to the turbulent odor world in which many animals live. Here, we review evidence that animals can use populations of rhythmically active or 'bursting' olfactory receptor neurons (bORNs) to extract and encode temporal information inherent in natural olfactory signals...
October 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
Michael M Halassa, László Acsády
The thalamus is the major source of cortical inputs shaping sensation, action, and cognition. Thalamic circuits are targeted by two major inhibitory systems: the thalamic reticular nucleus (TRN) and extrathalamic inhibitory (ETI) inputs. A unifying framework of how these systems operate is currently lacking. Here, we propose that TRN circuits are specialized to exert thalamic control at different spatiotemporal scales. Local inhibition of thalamic spike rates prevails during attentional selection, whereas global inhibition more likely prevails during sleep...
October 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
Matthias Zunhammer, Ulrike Bingel, Tor D Wager
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
October 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
Caleb E Finch, Sara Shams
Alzheimer disease (AD) research has mainly focused on neurodegenerative processes associated with the classic neuropathologic markers of senile plaques and neurofibrillary tangles. Additionally, cerebrovascular contributions to dementia are increasingly recognized, particularly from cerebral small vessel disease (SVD). Remarkably, in AD brains, the apolipoprotein E (ApoE) ɛ4 allele shows male excess for cerebral microbleeds (CMBs), a marker of SVD, which is opposite to the female excess of plaques and tangles...
September 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
Junghee Lee, Michael F Green
Impaired social functioning is pervasive in schizophrenia. Unfortunately, existing treatments have limited efficacy, and possible psychological or neurobiological mechanisms underlying social dysfunction in this disorder remain obscure. Here, we evaluate whether social preference, one key aspect of social processing that has been largely overlooked in schizophrenia research, and N-methyl-d-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) dysfunction can provide insights into the mechanism underlying social dysfunction in schizophrenia...
September 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
Frédéric A Meunier, Luis M Gutiérrez
The cortical actin network is a tight array of filaments located beneath the plasma membrane. In neurosecretory cells, secretory vesicles are recruited on this network via a small insert isoform of myosin VI in a Ca(2+)-dependent manner. Upon secretagogue stimulation, myosin II mediates a relaxation of the actin network leading to synchronous translocation of bound or caged vesicles to the plasma membrane where they undergo exocytosis. F-actin is also recruited to secretory sites, where structural changes are detected immediately preceding and following exocytic events...
September 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
Daniel Raper, Antoine Louveau, Jonathan Kipnis
The many interactions between the nervous and the immune systems, which are active in both physiological and pathological states, have recently become more clearly delineated with the discovery of a meningeal lymphatic system capable of carrying fluid, immune cells, and macromolecules from the central nervous system (CNS) to the draining deep cervical lymph nodes. However, the exact localization of the meningeal lymphatic vasculature and the path of drainage from the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) to the lymphatics remain poorly understood...
September 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
Kara Gross Margolis, Michael D Gershon
Recent research has highlighted the importance of the two-way interaction between the nervous and immune systems. This interaction is particularly important in the bowel because of the unique properties of this organ. The lumen of the gut is lined by a very large but remarkably thin surface that separates the body from the enteric microbiome. Immune defenses against microbial invasion are thus well developed and neuroimmune interactions are important in regulating and integrating these defenses. Important concepts in the phylogeny of neuroimmunity, enteric neuronal and glial regulation of immunity, changes that occur in the enteric nervous system during inflammation, the fundamental role of serotonin (5-HT) in enteric neuroimmune mechanisms, and future perspectives are reviewed...
September 2016: Trends in Neurosciences
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