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European Journal of Neuroscience

Mary K L Baldwin, Nicole A Young, Denis Matrov, Jon H Kaas
The superior colliculus is an important midbrain structure involved with integrating information from varying sensory modalities and sending motor signals to produce orienting movements toward environmental stimuli. Because of this role, the superior colliculus receives a multitude of sensory inputs from a wide variety of subcortical and cortical structures. Proportionately, the superior colliculus of gray squirrels is among the largest in size of all studied mammals, suggesting the importance of this structure in the behavioral characteristics of gray squirrels...
February 16, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Yu Tang, Yan-Ni Sun, Run Xu, Xiao Huang, Shuang Gu, Cheng-Cheng Hong, Mi-Jia Liu, Heng Jiang, Yong-Lu Yang, Jing Shi
The preoptic area (POA) of the hypothalamus, containing temperature-sensitive and -insensitive neurons, plays a key role in specific thermoregulatory responses. Although arginine vasopressin (AVP) has been shown to induce hypothermia by increasing the firing activities of warm-sensitive neurons and decreasing those of cold-sensitive and temperature-insensitive neurons, the effects of AVP on POA GABAergic transmission remain unknown. Herein, inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) of temperature-sensitive and temperature-insensitive neurons in POA slices were recorded using whole-cell patch clamp...
February 15, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Lisa M Smith, Louise C Parr-Brownlie
Parkinson's disease is caused by complex interactions between environmental factors and a genetic predisposition. Environmental factors include exposure to pesticides and toxins, heavy metals and accumulation of iron and/or manganese in the brain. However, accumulating evidence indicates that gut-brain health and function is impaired in Parkinson's disease, often a decade before motor symptoms are diagnosed. We present the gut-brain theory of Parkinson's disease and summarise the peripheral and central nervous system pathology, gastrointestinal symptoms experienced by many Parkinson's patients, the route by which gut-brain dysfunction may occur, and changes in gut microbiota that are associated with disease expression...
February 15, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Águida Foerster, Anirban Dutta, Min-Fang Kuo, Walter Paulus, Michael A Nitsche
Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a neuromodulatory technique which alters motor functions in healthy humans and in neurological patients. Most studies so far investigated the effects of tDCS on mechanisms underlying improvements of upper limb performance. To investigate the effect of anodal tDCS over the lower limb motor cortex (M1) on lower limb motor learning in healthy volunteers, we conducted a randomized, single blind and sham-controlled study. Thirty three (25.81 ± 3.85, 14 female) volunteers were included, and received anodal or sham tDCS over the left M1 (M1-tDCS)...
February 14, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Habiba Azab, Benjamin Y Hayden
The anterior cingulate cortex can be divided into distinct ventral (subgenual, sgACC) and dorsal (dACC), portions. The role of dACC in value-based decision-making is hotly debated, while the role of sgACC is poorly understood. We recorded neuronal activity in both regions in rhesus macaques performing a token-gambling task. We find that both encode many of the same variables; including integrated offered values of gambles, primary as well as secondary reward outcomes, number of current tokens, and anticipated rewards...
February 12, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Samuel Stuart, Sue Lord, Brook Galna, Lynn Rochester
Gait impairment is a core feature of Parkinson's disease (PD) with implications for falls risk. Visual cues improve gait in PD but the underlying mechanisms are unclear. Evidence suggests that attention and vision play an important role however the relative contribution from each is unclear. Measurement of visual exploration (specifically saccade frequency) during gait allows for real-time measurement of attention and vision. Understanding how visual cues influence visual exploration may allow inferences of the underlying mechanisms to response which could help to develop effective therapeutics...
February 12, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Mathis Kaiser, Daniel Senkowski, Yadira Roa Romero, Lars Riecke, Julian Keil
Interruptions in auditory input can be perceptually restored if they coincide with a masking sound, resulting in a continuity illusion. Previous studies have shown that this continuity illusion is associated with reduced low-frequency neural oscillations in the auditory cortex. However, the precise contribution of oscillatory amplitude changes and phase alignment to auditory restoration remains unclear. Using electroencephalography, we investigated induced power changes and phase locking in response to 3 Hz amplitude-modulated tones during the interval of an interrupting noise...
February 11, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Sarah M Clark, Chloe N Vaughn, Jennifer A Soroka, Xin Li, Leonardo H Tonelli
Accumulating evidence has shown that lymphocytes modulate behavior and cognition by direct interactions with the central nervous system. Studies have shown that reconstitution by adoptive transfer of lymphocytes from wild type into immune deficient mice restores a number of neurobehavioral deficits observed in these models. Moreover, it has been shown that these effects are mostly mediated by T lymphocytes. Studies of adoptive transfer thus far have employed adult mice, but whether lymphocytes may also modulate behavior during development remains unknown...
February 11, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Sarah Tune, Malte Wöstmann, Jonas Obleser
In recent years, hemispheric lateralization of alpha power has emerged as a neural mechanism thought to underpin spatial attention across sensory modalities. Yet, how healthy aging, beginning in middle adulthood, impacts the modulation of lateralized alpha power supporting auditory attention remains poorly understood. In the current electroencephalography (EEG) study, middle-aged and older adults (N = 29; ~40-70 years) performed a dichotic listening task that simulates a challenging, multi-talker scenario. We examined the extent to which the modulation of 8-12 Hz alpha power would serve as neural marker of listening success across age...
February 11, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Maria Giese, Julia Gestrich, Azar Massah, Jonas Peterle, HongYing Wei, Monika Stengl
In the Madeira cockroach pigment-dispersing factor-immunoreactive (PDF-ir) neurons innervating the circadian clock, the accessory medulla (AME) in the brain's optic lobes, control circadian behavior. Circadian activity rhythms are entrained to daily light-dark cycles only by compound eye photoreceptors terminating in the lamina and medulla. Still, it is unknown which neurons connect the photoreceptors to the clock to allow for light-entrainment. Here, we characterized by multiple-label immunocytochemistry the serotonin (5-HT)-ir anterior fiber fan and GABA-ir pathways connecting the AME- and optic lobe neuropils...
February 11, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Christopher W Tschumi, Michael J Beckstead
Neurotensin (NT) is a 13 amino acid neuropeptide that is expressed throughout the central nervous system and is implicated in the etiology of multiple diseases and disorders. Many primary investigations of NT-induced modulation of neuronal excitability at the level of the synapse have been conducted, but they have not been summarized in review form in nearly 30 years. Therefore, the goal of this review is to discuss the many actions of NT on neuronal excitability across brain regions as well as NT circuit architecture...
February 6, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Takefumi Ohki, Yuichi Takei
Schemas are higher-level knowledge structures that integrate and organise lower-level representations. As internal templates, schemas are formed according to how events are perceived, interpreted, and remembered. Although these higher-level units are assumed to play a fundamental role in our daily life from an early age, the neuronal basis and mechanisms of schema formation and use remain largely unknown. It is important to elucidate how the brain constructs and maintains these higher-level units. In order to examine the possible neural underpinnings of schema, we recapitulate previous work and discuss their findings related to schemas as the brain template...
February 6, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Ida Siveke, Julian J Ammer, Sarah A Gleiss, Benedikt Grothe, Christian Leibold, Felix Felmy
In sensory systems the neuronal representation of external stimuli is enhanced along the sensory pathway. In the auditory system, strong enhancement of binaural information takes place between the brainstem and the midbrain, however the underlying cellular mechanisms are unknown. Here we investigated the transformation of binaural information in the dorsal nucleus of the lateral lemniscus (DNLL), a nucleus that connects the binaural nuclei in the brainstem and the inferior colliculus in the midbrain. We used in vitro and in vivo electrophysiology in adult Mongolian gerbils to show that NMDARs play a critical role in neuronal encoding of stimulus properties in the DNLL...
February 6, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Hiroki Toyoda
Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in the insular cortex play an important role in nicotine addiction, but its cellular and synaptic mechanisms underlying nicotine addiction still remain unresolved. In layer 5 pyramidal neurons of the mouse insular cortex, activation of nAChRs suppresses synaptic potentiation through enhancing GABAergic synaptic transmission via activation of β2-containing nAChRs in non-fast-spiking (non-FS) interneurons. However, it has not been addressed whether and how activation of nAChRs modulates synaptic plasticity in layer 3 and 6 pyramidal neurons of the insular cortex...
February 6, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Mino D C Belle, Casey O Diekman
Neuronal oscillations of the brain, such as those observed in the cortices and hippocampi of behaving animals and humans, span across wide frequency bands, from slow delta waves (0.1 Hz) to ultra-fast ripples (600 Hz). Here, we focus on ultra-slow neuronal oscillators in the hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nuclei (SCN), the master daily clock that operates on interlocking transcription-translation feedback loops to produce circadian rhythms in clock gene expression with a period of near 24 hours (<0.001 Hz)...
February 3, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Jens Hjortkjaer, Jonatan Märcher-Rørsted, Søren A Fuglsang, Torsten Dau
Neuronal oscillations are thought to play an important role in working memory (WM) and speech processing. Listening to speech in real-life situations is often cognitively demanding but it is unknown whether WM load influences how auditory cortical activity synchronizes to speech features. Here we developed an auditory n-back paradigm to investigate cortical entrainment to speech envelope fluctuations under different degrees of WM load. We measured the electroencephalogram (EEG), pupil dilations, and behavioural performance from 22 subjects listening to continuous speech with an embedded n-back task...
February 2, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Fren T Y Smulders, Sanne Ten Oever, Franc C L Donkers, Conny W E M Quaedflieg, Vincent van de Ven
The appropriate definition and scaling of the magnitude of EEG oscillations is an underdeveloped area. The aim of this study was to optimize the analysis of resting EEG alpha magnitude, focusing on alpha peak frequency and non-linear transformation of alpha power. A family of non-linear transforms, Box-Cox transforms, were applied to find the transform that (a) maximized a non-disputed effect: the increase in alpha magnitude when the eyes are closed (Berger effect), and (b) made the distribution of alpha magnitude closest to normal across epochs-within each participant, or across participants...
February 1, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Kelin Wheaton, Sydney Aten, Lucas Sales Queiroz, Kyle Sullivan, John Oberdick, Kari R Hoyt, Karl Obrietan
The circadian timing system influences the functional properties of most, if not all, physiological processes. Central to the mammalian timing system is the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) of the hypothalamus. The SCN functions as a 'master clock' that sets the phasing of ancillary circadian oscillator populations found throughout the body. Further, via an entraining input from the retina, the SCN ensures that the clock oscillators are synchronized to the daily light/dark cycle. A critical component of the SCN timing and entrainment systems is the p44/42 mitogen-activated protein kinase (ERK/MAPK) pathway...
January 31, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Svea C Y Schroeder, Felix Ball, Niko A Busch
Only small amounts of visual information, as determined by the capacity of working memory, can be held in an active and accessible state. Thus, it is important to select and maintain information that is relevant while ignoring irrelevant information. However, the underlying neural mechanism of these processes has yet to be identified. One potential candidate are alpha oscillations (8-14 Hz), which have been shown to inhibit stimulus processing in perceptual tasks. During memory maintenance, alpha power increases with set size suggesting that alpha oscillations are involved either in memory maintenance or in the inhibition of task-irrelevant information in order to protect relevant information from interference...
January 30, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
Arsham Afsardeir, Mehdi Keramati
Goal-directed planning in behavioral and neural sciences is theorized to involve a prospective mental simulation that, starting from the animal's current state in the environment, expands a decision tree in a forward fashion. Backward planning in the artificial intelligence literature, however, suggests that agents expand a mental tree in a backward fashion starting from a certain goal state they have in mind. Here we show that several behavioral patterns observed in animals and humans, namely outcome-specific Pavlovian-to-instrumental transfer and differential-outcome effect, can be parsimoniously explained by backward planning...
January 30, 2018: European Journal of Neuroscience
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