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neural circuits

Marijn Bart Martens, Monica Frega, Jessica Classen, Lisa Epping, Elske Bijvank, Marco Benevento, Hans van Bokhoven, Paul Tiesinga, Dirk Schubert, Nael Nadif Kasri
Heterozygous mutations or deletions in the human Euchromatin histone methyltransferase 1 (EHMT1) gene cause Kleefstra syndrome, a neurodevelopmental disorder that is characterized by autistic-like features and severe intellectual disability (ID). Neurodevelopmental disorders including ID and autism may be related to deficits in activity-dependent wiring of brain circuits during development. Although Kleefstra syndrome has been associated with dendritic and synaptic defects in mice and Drosophila, little is known about the role of EHMT1 in the development of cortical neuronal networks...
October 21, 2016: Scientific Reports
Li-Wa Shao, Rong Niu, Ying Liu
Neurons have a central role in the systemic coordination of mitochondrial unfolded protein response (UPR(mt)) and the cell non-autonomous modulation of longevity. However, the mechanism by which the nervous system senses mitochondrial stress and communicates to the distal tissues to induce UPR(mt) remains unclear. Here we employ the tissue-specific CRISPR-Cas9 approach to disrupt mitochondrial function only in the nervous system of Caenorhabditis elegans, and reveal a cell non-autonomous induction of UPR(mt) in peripheral cells...
October 21, 2016: Cell Research
Gustavo Rios, Evgueniy V Lubenov, Derrick Chi, Michael L Roukes, Athanassios G Siapas
Computations in brain circuits involve the coordinated activation of large populations of neurons distributed across brain areas. However, monitoring neuronal activity in the brain of intact animals with high temporal and spatial resolution has remained a technological challenge. Here we address this challenge by developing dense, three-dimensional (3-D) electrode arrays for electrophysiology. The 3-D arrays constitute the front-end of a modular and configurable system architecture that enables monitoring neuronal activity with unprecedented scale and resolution...
October 21, 2016: Nano Letters
Yaling Yang, Shantanu H Joshi, Neda Jahanshad, Paul M Thompson, Laura A Baker
Verbal and physical aggression begin early in life and steadily decline thereafter in normal development. As a result, elevated aggressive behavior in adolescence may signal atypical development and greater vulnerability for negative mental and health outcomes. Converging evidence suggests that brain disturbances in regions involved in impulse control, emotional regulation, and sensation seeking may contribute to heightened aggression. However, little is known regarding the neural mechanisms underlying subtypes of aggression (i...
October 21, 2016: Aggressive Behavior
Clarissa J Whitmire, Garrett B Stanley
Adaptation is fundamental to life. All organisms adapt over timescales that span from evolution to generations and lifetimes to moment-by-moment interactions. The nervous system is particularly adept at rapidly adapting to change, and this in fact may be one of its fundamental principles of organization and function. Rapid forms of sensory adaptation have been well documented across all sensory modalities in a wide range of organisms, yet we do not have a comprehensive understanding of the adaptive cellular mechanisms that ultimately give rise to the corresponding percepts, due in part to the complexity of the circuitry...
October 19, 2016: Neuron
Yongseok Yoo, Woori Kim
Neural systems are inherently noisy. One well-studied example of a noise reduction mechanism in the brain is the population code, where representing a variable with multiple neurons allows the encoded variable to be recovered with fewer errors. Studies have assumed ideal observer models for decoding population codes, and the manner in which information in the neural population can be retrieved remains elusive. This letter addresses a mechanism by which realistic neural circuits can recover encoded variables...
October 20, 2016: Neural Computation
William Severa, Ojas Parekh, Conrad D James, James B Aimone
The dentate gyrus forms a critical link between the entorhinal cortex and CA3 by providing a sparse version of the signal. Concurrent with this increase in sparsity, a widely accepted theory suggests the dentate gyrus performs pattern separation-similar inputs yield decorrelated outputs. Although an active region of study and theory, few logically rigorous arguments detail the dentate gyrus's (DG) coding. We suggest a theoretically tractable, combinatorial model for this action. The model provides formal methods for a highly redundant, arbitrarily sparse, and decorrelated output signal...
October 20, 2016: Neural Computation
Ruyi Huang, Serapio M Baca, Jason W Worrell, Xingquan Liu, Yeji Seo, James C Leiter, Daniel C Lu
Respiration is produced and controlled by well-characterized brainstem nuclei, but the contributions of spinal circuits to respiratory control and modulation remain under investigation. Many respiratory studies are conducted in in vitro preparations (e.g., brainstem slice) obtained from neonatal rodents. While informative, these studies do not fully recapitulate the complex afferent and efferent neural circuits that are likely to be involved in eupnea (i.e., quiet breathing). To begin to investigate spinal contributions to respiration, we electrically stimulated the cervical spinal cord during unassisted respiration in anesthetized, intact mice...
October 7, 2016: Journal of Applied Physiology
Agnieszka Mika, Heidi E Day, Alexander Martinez, Nicole L Rumian, Benjamin N Greenwood, Maciej Chichlowski, Brian M Berg, Monika Fleshner
Manipulating gut microbes may improve mental health. Prebiotics are indigestible compounds that increase the growth and activity of health- promoting microorganisms, yet few studies have examined how prebiotics affect CNS function. Using an acute inescapable stressor known to produce learned helplessness behaviors such as failure to escape and exaggerated fear, we tested whether early life supplementation of a blend of two prebiotics, galactooligosaccharide (GOS) and polydextrose (PDX), and the glycoprotein lactoferrin (LAC) would attenuate behavioral and biological responses to stress later in life...
October 20, 2016: European Journal of Neuroscience
David S Freedman, Joseph B Schroeder, Gregory I Telian, Zhengyang Zhang, Smrithi Sunil, Jason T Ritt
OBJECTIVE: Behavioral neuroscience studies in freely moving rodents require small, light-weight implants to facilitate neural recording and stimulation. Our goal was to develop an integrated package of 3D printed parts and assembly aids for labs to rapidly fabricate, with minimal training, an implant that combines individually positionable microelectrodes, an optical fiber, zero insertion force (ZIF-clip) headstage connection, and secondary recording electrodes, e.g. for electromyography (EMG)...
October 20, 2016: Journal of Neural Engineering
Haitao Yu, Rishi R Dhingra, Thomas E Dick, Roberto Fernandez Galan
Neural activity generally displays irregular firing patterns even in circuits with apparently regular outputs, such as motor pattern generators, in which the output frequency fluctuates randomly around a mean value. This "circuit noise" is inherited from the random firing of single neurons, which emerges from stochastic ion-channel gating (channel noise), spontaneous neurotransmitter release, and its diffusion and binding to synaptic receptors. Here, we demonstrate how to expand conductance-based network models that are originally deterministic to include realistic, physiological noise, focusing on stochastic ion-channel gating...
October 19, 2016: Journal of Neurophysiology
Clarissa J Whitmire, Daniel C Millard, Garrett B Stanley
Sensory stimulation drives complex interactions across neural circuits as information is encoded and then transmitted from one brain region to the next. In the highly interconnected thalamocortical circuit, these complex interactions elicit repeatable neural dynamics in response to temporal patterns of stimuli that provide insight into the circuit properties that generated them. Here, using a combination of in-vivo voltage sensitive dye (VSD) imaging of cortex, single unit recording in thalamus, and optogenetics to manipulate thalamic state in the rodent vibrissa pathway, we probed the thalamocortical circuit with simple temporal patterns of stimuli delivered either to the whiskers on the face (sensory stimulation) or to the thalamus directly via electrical or optogenetic inputs (artificial stimulation)...
October 19, 2016: Journal of Neurophysiology
Kento Nakagawa, Saeko Kawashima, Nobuaki Mizuguchi, Kazuyuki Kanosue
Periodic interlimb coordination shows lower performance when the ipsilateral hand and foot (e.g., right hand and right foot) are simultaneously moved than when the contralateral hand and foot (e.g., right hand and left foot) are simultaneously moved. The present study aimed to investigate how brain activity that is related to the dependence of hand-foot coordination on limb combination, using functional magnetic imaging. Twenty-one right-handed subjects performed periodic coordinated movements of the ipsilateral or contralateral hand and foot in the same or opposite direction in the sagittal plane...
2016: Frontiers in Human Neuroscience
Limei Bu, Dahua Yu, Shaoping Su, Yao Ma, Karen M von Deneen, Lin Luo, Jinquan Zhai, Bo Liu, Jiadong Cheng, Yanyan Guan, Yangding Li, Yanzhi Bi, Ting Xue, Xiaoqi Lu, Kai Yuan
Smoking is one of the most prevalent dependence disorders. Previous studies have detected structural and functional deficits in smokers. However, few studies focused on the changes of resting state functional connectivity (RSFC) of the brain regions with structural deficits in young adult smokers. Twenty-six young adult smokers and 26 well-matched healthy non-smokers participated in our study. Voxel-based morphometry (VBM) and RSFC were employed to investigate the structural and functional changes in young adult smokers...
2016: Frontiers in Human Neuroscience
Francesco Corrivetti, Guillaume Herbet, Sylvie Moritz-Gasser, Hugues Duffau
BACKGROUND: Face recognition is a complex function sustained by a distributed large-scale neural network, with a core system involving the ventral occipito-temporal cortex, the inferior longitudinal fasciculus (ILF) and the splenial commissural fibers. This circuit seems to be bilaterally organized, with however a right hemispheric dominance. According to this anatomo-functional model, prosopagnosia is usually, but not exclusively, generated by a damage of the right part of this brain network...
October 15, 2016: World Neurosurgery
Xuemei Lei, Chuansheng Chen, Chunhui Chen, Qinghua He, Robert K Moyzis, Gui Xue, Qi Dong
Cooperativeness is an essential behavioral trait evolved to facilitate group living. Social and cognitive mechanisms involved in cooperation (e.g., motivation, reward encoding, action evaluation, and executive functions) are sub-served by the striatal-projected circuits, whose physical existence has been confirmed by animal studies, human postmortem studies, and in vivo human brain studies. The current study investigated the associations between Cooperativeness and fiber connectivities from the striatum to nine subcortical and cortical regions, including the amygdala, hippocampus, medial orbitofrontal cortex, lateral orbitofrontal cortex, ventrolateral prefrontal cortex, dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, posterior cingulate cortex/retrosplenial cortex, dorsal cingulate cortex, and rostral cingulate cortex...
2016: PloS One
Simon A Moss, Melanie Irons, Martin Boland
BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Lecturers often present entertaining videos, or organize a variety of amusing demonstrations, to foster student engagement or to encourage critical analysis. Magic tricks, in particular, have been shown to activate neural circuits that underpin motivation or problem-solving and, therefore, could be beneficial during lectures. Nevertheless, we hypothesize that, unless the method that underpins these tricks is revealed, students may ruminate over possible explanations, distracting attention from the lecture material...
October 18, 2016: British Journal of Educational Psychology
Michael P Saddoris
Repeated self-administration of cocaine is associated with impairments in motivated behaviors as well as alterations in both dopamine (DA) release and neural signaling within the nucleus accumbens (NAc). These impairments are present even after several weeks of abstinence from drug taking, suggesting that the self-administration experience induces long-lasting neuroplastic alterations in the mesolimbic DA circuit. To understand these changes at the terminal level, rats were allowed to self-administer either cocaine intravenously (∼1 mg/kg per infusion) or water to a receptacle (control) in 2-h sessions over 14 days, followed by 30 days of enforced abstinence...
September 2016: ENeuro
J E LeDoux, J Moscarello, R Sears, V Campese
Research on avoidance conditioning began in the late 1930s as a way to use laboratory experiments to better understand uncontrollable fear and anxiety. Avoidance was initially conceived of as a two-factor learning process in which fear is first acquired through Pavlovian aversive conditioning (so-called fear conditioning), and then behaviors that reduce the fear aroused by the Pavlovian conditioned stimulus are reinforced through instrumental conditioning. Over the years, criticisms of both the avoidance paradigm and the two-factor fear theory arose...
October 18, 2016: Molecular Psychiatry
David J Anderson
Goal-directed social behaviours such as mating and fighting are associated with scalable and persistent internal states of emotion, motivation, arousal or drive. How those internal states are encoded and coupled to behavioural decision making and action selection is not clear. Recent studies in Drosophila melanogaster and mice have identified circuit nodes that have causal roles in the control of innate social behaviours. Remarkably, in both species, these relatively small groups of neurons can influence both aggression and mating, and also play a part in the encoding of internal states that promote these social behaviours...
October 18, 2016: Nature Reviews. Neuroscience
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