Download the Free Unbound MEDLINE PubMed App to your smartphone or tablet.
Available for iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Android.
lateral geniculate nucleus [keywords]
- The Retinal Projection to the Pretectal Nucleus Lentiformis Mesencephali in Pigeons (Columba Livia). [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- J Comp Neurol 2014 Jul 10.
In birds, the nucleus of the basal optic root (nBOR) and the nucleus lentiformis mesencephali (LM) are retinal-recipient nuclei involved in the analysis of optic flow and the generation of the optokinetic response. The nBOR receives retinal input from displaced ganglion cells (DGCs), which are found at the margin of the inner nuclear and inner plexiform layers, rather than the ganglion cell layer. The LM receives afferents from retinal ganglion cells, but whether DGCs also project to LM remains unclear. To resolve this issue, we made small injections of retrograde tracer into LM and examined horizontal sections through the retina. For comparison, we also had cases with injections in nBOR, the optic tectum and the anterior dorsolateral thalamus (the equivalent to the mammalian lateral geniculate nucleus). From all LM injections both retinal ganglion cells and DGCs were labelled. The percentage of DGCs, as a proportion of all labelled cells, varied from 2-28%, and these were not different in morphology or size compared to those labelled from nBOR, in which the proportion of DGCs was much higher (84-93%). DGCs were also labeled after injections into the anterior dorsolateral thalamus. The proportion was small (2-3%), and these DGCs were smaller in size than those projecting to the nBOR and LM. No DGCs were labelled from an injection in the optic tectum. Based on an analysis of size, we suggest that different populations of retinal ganglion cells are involved in the projections to LM, nBOR, the optic tectum and the anterior dorsolateral thalamus. J. Comp. Neurol., 2014. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
- Functional mapping of the magnocellular and parvocellular subdivisions of human LGN. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Neuroimage 2014 Jul 16.
The magnocellular (M) and parvocellular (P) subdivisions of primate LGN are known to process complementary types of visual stimulus information, but a method for noninvasively defining these subdivisions in humans has proven elusive. As a result, the functional roles of these subdivisions in humans have not been investigated physiologically. To functionally map the M and P subdivisions of human LGN, we used high-resolution fMRI at high field (7T and 3T) together with a combination of spatial, temporal, luminance, and chromatic stimulus manipulations. We found that stimulus factors that differentially drive magnocellular and parvocellular neurons in primate LGN also elicit differential BOLD fMRI responses in human LGN and that these responses exhibit a spatial organization consistent with the known anatomical organization of the M and P subdivisions. In test-retest studies, the relative responses of individual voxels to M-type and P-type stimuli were reliable across scanning sessions on separate days and across sessions at different field strengths. The ability to functionally identify magnocellular and parvocellular regions of human LGN with fMRI opens possibilities for investigating the functions of these subdivisions in human visual perception, in patient populations with suspected abnormalities in one of these subdivisions, and in visual cortical processing streams arising from parallel thalamocortical pathways.
- Mediodorsal and Visual Thalamic Connectivity Differ in Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorder With and Without Psychosis History. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Schizophr Bull 2014 Jul 16.
Empirical and theoretical studies implicate thalamocortical circuits in schizophrenia, supported by emerging resting-state functional connectivity studies (rs-fcMRI). Similar but attenuated alterations were found in bipolar disorder (BD). However, it remains unknown if segregated loops within thalamocortical systems show distinct rs-fcMRI alterations in schizophrenia. For instance, the mediodorsal (MD) nucleus, known to project to prefrontal networks, may be differently altered than the lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN), known to project to the occipital cortex. Also, it remains unknown if these circuits show different patterns of alterations in BD as a function of psychosis history, which may be associated with a more severe clinical course. We addressed these questions in 90 patients with chronic schizophrenia and 73 remitted BD patients (33 with psychosis history) matched to 146 healthy comparison subjects. We hypothesized that the MD vs LGN would show dissociations across diagnostic groups. We found that MD and LGN show more qualitative similarities than differences in their patterns of dysconnectivity in schizophrenia. In BD, patterns qualitatively diverged between thalamic nuclei although these effects were modest statistically. BD with psychosis history was associated with more severe dysconnectivity, particularly for the MD nucleus. Also, the MD nucleus showed connectivity reductions with the cerebellum in schizophrenia but not in BD. Results suggest dissociations for thalamic nuclei across diagnoses, albeit carefully controlling for medication is warranted in future studies. Collectively, these findings have implications for designing more precise neuroimaging-driven biomarkers that can identify common and divergent large-scale network perturbations across psychiatric diagnoses with shared symptoms.
- Nuclei-specific differences in nerve terminal distribution, morphology, and development in mouse visual thalamus. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Neural Dev 2014 Jul 10; 9(1):16.
Mouse visual thalamus has emerged as a powerful model for understanding the mechanisms underlying neural circuit formation and function. Three distinct nuclei within mouse thalamus receive retinal input, the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN), the ventral lateral geniculate nucleus (vLGN), and the intergeniculate nucleus (IGL). However, in each of these nuclei, retinal inputs are vastly outnumbered by nonretinal inputs that arise from cortical and subcortical sources. Although retinal and nonretinal terminals associated within dLGN circuitry have been well characterized, we know little about nerve terminal organization, distribution and development in other nuclei of mouse visual thalamus.Immunolabeling specific subsets of synapses with antibodies against vesicle-associated neurotransmitter transporters or neurotransmitter synthesizing enzymes revealed significant differences in the composition, distribution and morphology of nonretinal terminals in dLGN, vLGN and IGL. For example, inhibitory terminals are more densely packed in vLGN, and cortical terminals are more densely distributed in dLGN. Overall, synaptic terminal density appears least dense in IGL. Similar nuclei-specific differences were observed for retinal terminals using immunolabeling, genetic labeling, axonal tracing and serial block face scanning electron microscopy: retinal terminals are smaller, less morphologically complex, and more densely distributed in vLGN than in dLGN. Since glutamatergic terminal size often correlates with synaptic function, we used in vitro whole cell recordings and optic tract stimulation in acutely prepared thalamic slices to reveal that excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) are considerably smaller in vLGN and show distinct responses following paired stimuli. Finally, anterograde labeling of retinal terminals throughout early postnatal development revealed that anatomical differences in retinal nerve terminal structure are not observable as synapses initially formed, but rather developed as retinogeniculate circuits mature.Taken together, these results reveal nuclei-specific differences in nerve terminal composition, distribution, and morphology in mouse visual thalamus. These results raise intriguing questions about the different functions of these nuclei in processing light-derived information, as well as differences in the mechanisms that underlie their unique, nuclei-specific development.
- Distribution of PCP4 protein in the forebrain of adult mice. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Acta Histochem 2014 Jun 19.
Purkinje-cell protein 4 (PCP4) is a small calmodulin (CaM)-binding protein that has been discovered to be selectively expressed by cerebellar Purkinje cells in the adult rodent brain. In addition, expression of PCP4 mRNA has been detected in the hippocampus and in the cortex. In order to determine the expression of PCP4 protein in the brain, we performed an immunohistochemical analysis using adult mice. We could demonstrate that PCP4 is expressed in neocortical structures, especially in the deep layers, as well as in other cortical structures and parts of the hippocampal formation. Moreover, PCP4 protein is highly expressed in the olfactory bulb and caudate putamen. PCP4 positive cells were also detected in specific areas of the amygdala, thalamus (especially dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus) and hypothalamus. By performing double-labeling experiments together with NeuN (a neuronal marker), we could demonstrate that PCP4 expressing cells in the brain are of neuronal origin.
- The Discovery of Spectral Opponency in Visual Systems and its Impact on Understanding the Neurobiology of Color Vision. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- J Hist Neurosci 2014 Jun 18.:1-28.
The two principal theories of color vision that emerged in the nineteenth century offered alternative ideas about the nature of the biological mechanisms that underlie the percepts of color. One, the Young-Helmholtz theory, proposed that the visual system contained three component mechanisms whose individual activations were linked to the perception of three principal hues; the other, the Hering theory, assumed there were three underlying mechanisms, each comprising a linked opponency that supported contrasting and mutually exclusive color percepts. These competing conceptions remained effectively untested until the middle of the twentieth century when single-unit electrophysiology emerged as a tool allowing a direct examination of links between spectral stimulation of the eye and responses of individual cells in visual systems. This approach revealed that the visual systems of animals known to have color vision contain cells that respond in a spectrally-opponent manner, firing to some wavelengths of stimulation and inhibiting to others. The discovery of spectral opponency, and the research it stimulated, changed irrevocably our understanding of the biology of color vision.
- Temporal response properties of koniocellular (blue-on and blue-off) cells in marmoset lateral geniculate nucleus. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- J Neurophysiol 2014 Jun 11.
Visual perception requires integrating signals arriving at different times from parallel visual streams. For example, signals carried on the phasic-magnocellular (MC) pathway reach the cerebral cortex pathways some tens of milliseconds before signals travelling on the tonic-parvocellular (PC) pathway. Visual latencies of cells in the koniocellular (KC) pathway have not been specifically studied in simian primates. Here we compared MC and PC cells to "blue-on" (BON) and "blue-off" (BOF) KC cells; these cells carry visual signals originating in short wavelength sensitive (S) cones. We made extracellular recordings in the lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN) of anaesthetized marmosets. We found that BON visual latencies are 10 - 20 ms longer than those of PC or MC cells. A small number of recorded BOF cells (n = 7) had latencies 10-20 ms longer than those of BON cells. Within all cell groups, latencies of foveal receptive fields (< 10 degrees eccentricity) were longer (by 3 - 8 ms) than latencies of peripheral receptive fields (> 10 degrees). Latencies of yellow-off inputs to BON cells lagged the blue-on inputs by up to 30 ms, but no differences in visual latency were seen on comparing marmosets expressing dichromatic ("red-green color blind") or trichromatic color vision phenotype. We conclude that S cone signals leaving the LGN on KC pathways are delayed with respect to signals travelling on PC and MC pathways. Cortical circuits serving color vision must therefore integrate across delays in (red-green) chromatic signals carried by PC cells and (blue-yellow) signals carried by KC cells.
- Regionally specific expression of high-voltage-activated calcium channels in thalamic nuclei of epileptic and non-epileptic rats. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Mol Cell Neurosci 2014 Jun 7.
The polygenic origin of generalized absence epilepsy results in dysfunction of ion channels that allows the switch from physiological asynchronous to pathophysiological highly synchronous network activity. Evidence from rat and mouse models of absence epilepsy indicates that altered Ca(2+) channel activity contributes to cellular and network alterations that lead to seizure activity. Under physiological circumstances, high voltage-activated (HVA) Ca(2+) channels are important in determining the thalamic firing profile. Here, we investigated a possible contribution of HVA channels to the epileptic phenotype using a rodent genetic model of absence epilepsy. In this study, HVA Ca(2+) currents were recorded from neurons of three different thalamic nuclei that are involved in both sensory signal transmission and rhythmic-synchronized activity during epileptic spike-and-wave discharges (SWD), namely the dorsal part of the lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN), the ventrobasal thalamic complex (VB) and the reticular thalamic nucleus (NRT) of epileptic Wistar Albino Glaxo rats from Rijswijk (WAG/Rij) and non-epileptic August Copenhagen Irish (ACI) rats. HVA Ca(2+) current densities in dLGN neurons were significantly increased in epileptic rats compared with non-epileptic controls while other thalamic regions revealed no differences between the strains. Application of specific channel blockers revealed that the increased current was carried by L-type Ca(2+) channels. Electrophysiological evidence of increased L-type current correlated with up-regulated mRNA and protein expression of a particular L-type channel, namely Cav1.3, in dLGN of epileptic rats. No significant changes were found for other HVA Ca(2+) channels. Moreover, pharmacological inactivation of L-type Ca(2+) channels results in altered firing profiles of thalamocortical relay (TC) neurons from non-epileptic rather than from epileptic rats. While HVA Ca(2+) channels influence tonic and burst firing in ACI and WAG/Rij differently, it is discussed that increased Cav1.3 expression may indirectly contribute to increased robustness of burst firing and thereby the epileptic phenotype of absence epilepsy.
- The impact of the lateral geniculate nucleus and corticogeniculate interactions on efficient coding and higher-order visual object processing. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Vision Res 2014 Jun 6.
Principles of efficient coding suggest that the peripheral units of any sensory processing system are designed for efficient coding. The function of the lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN) as an early stage in the visual system is not well understood. Some findings indicate that similar to the retina that decorrelates input signals spatially, the LGN tends to perform a temporal decorrelation. There is evidence suggesting that corticogeniculate connections may account for this decorrelation in the LGN. In this study, we propose a computational model based on biological evidence reported by Wang, Jones, Andolina, Salt, and Sillito (2006), who demonstrated that the influence pattern of V1 feedback is phase-reversed. The output of our model shows how corticogeniculate connections decorrelate LGN responses and make an efficient representation. We evaluated our model using criteria that have previously been tested on LGN neurons through cell recording experiments, including sparseness, entropy, power spectra, and information transfer. We also considered the role of the LGN in higher-order visual object processing, comparing the categorization performance of human subjects with a cortical object recognition model in the presence and absence of our LGN input-stage model. Our results show that the new model that considers the role of the LGN, more closely follows the categorization performance of human subjects.
- Bursting thalamic responses in awake monkey contribute to visual detection and are modulated by corticofugal feedback. [Journal Article]
- Front Behav Neurosci 2014.:198.
The lateral geniculate nucleus is the gateway for visual information en route to the visual cortex. Neural activity is characterized by the existence of two firing modes: burst and tonic. Originally associated with sleep, bursts have now been postulated to be a part of the normal visual response, structured to increase the probability of cortical activation, able to act as a "wake-up" call to the cortex. We investigated a potential role for burst in the detection of novel stimuli by recording neuronal activity in the lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN) of behaving monkeys during a visual detection task. Our results show that bursts are often the neuron's first response, and are more numerous in the response to attended target stimuli than to unattended distractor stimuli. Bursts are indicators of the task novelty, as repetition decreased bursting. Because the primary visual cortex is the major modulatory input to the LGN, we compared the results obtained in control conditions with those observed when cortical activity was reduced by TMS. This cortical deactivation reduced visual response related bursting by 90%. These results highlight a novel role for the thalamus, able to code higher order image attributes as important as novelty early in the thalamo-cortical conversation.