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lateral geniculate nucleus [keywords]
- The NPY intergeniculate leaflet projections to the suprachiasmatic nucleus transmit metabolic conditions. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Neuroscience 2013 May 13.
The Intergeniculate leaflet (IGL) is classically known as the area of the Thalamic Lateral Geniculate Complex providing the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) non-photic information. In the present study we investigated whether this information might be related to the metabolic state of the animal. The following groups of male Wistar rats were used for analysis of NPY and c-Fos in the IGL and SCN. 1. Fed ad libitum. 2. Fasted for 48 hours. 3. fasted for 48 hours followed by refeeding for 3 hours. 4. monosodium glutamate-lesioned and 48h-fasted. 5. Electrolytic lesion in the IGL and 48h-fasted. The results were quantified by optical densitometry. Neuronal tracers were injected in two brain areas that receive metabolic information from the periphery, the Arcuate Nucleus and Nucleus of the Tractus Solitarius to investigate whether there is an anatomical relationship with the IGL. Lesion studies showed the IGL, and not the ARC, as origin of most NPY projections to the SCN. Fasting induced important changes in the NPY expression in the IGL, coinciding with similar changes of NPY/GAD projections of the IGL to the SCN. These changes revealed that the IGL is involved in the transmission of metabolic information to the SCN. In fasted animals IGL lesion resulted in a significant increase of c-Fos in the SCN as compared to intact fasted animals demonstrating the inhibitory influence of the IGL to the SCN in fasting conditions. When the animal after fasting was refed, an increase of c-Fos in the SCN indicated a removal of this inhibitory input. Together these observations show that in addition to increased inhibitory IGL input during fasting, the negative metabolic condition also results in increased excitatory input to the SCN via other pathways. Consequently the present observations show that at least part of the non-photic input to the SCN, arising from the IGL contains information about metabolic conditions.
- Shh/Boc signaling is required for sustained generation of ipsilateral projecting ganglion cells in the mouse retina. [Journal Article]
- J Neurosci 2013 May 15; 33(20):8596-607.
Sonic Hedgehog (Shh) signaling is an important determinant of vertebrate retinal ganglion cell (RGC) development. In mice, there are two major RGC populations: (1) the Islet2-expressing contralateral projecting (c)RGCs, which both produce and respond to Shh; and (2) the Zic2-expressing ipsilateral projecting RGCs (iRGCs), which lack Shh expression. In contrast to cRGCs, iRGCs, which are generated in the ventrotemporal crescent (VTC) of the retina, specifically express Boc, a cell adhesion molecule that acts as a high-affinity receptor for Shh. In Boc(-/-) mutant mice, the ipsilateral projection is significantly decreased. Here, we demonstrate that this phenotype results, at least in part, from the misspecification of a proportion of iRGCs. In Boc(-/-) VTC, the number of Zic2-positive RGCs is reduced, whereas more Islet2/Shh-positive RGCs are observed, a phenotype also detected in Zic2 and Foxd1 null embryos. Consistent with this observation, organization of retinal projections at the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus is altered in Boc(-/-) mice. Analyses of the molecular and cellular consequences of introducing Shh into the developing VTC and Zic2 and Boc into the central retina indicate that Boc expression alone is insufficient to fully activate the ipsilateral program and that Zic2 regulates Shh expression. Taking these data together, we propose that expression of Boc in cells from the VTC is required to sustain Zic2 expression, likely by regulating the levels of Shh signaling from the nearby cRGCs. Zic2, in turn, directly or indirectly, counteracts Shh and Islet2 expression in the VTC and activates the ipsilateral program.
- Thalamic control of neocortical area formation in mice. [Journal Article]
- J Neurosci 2013 May 8; 33(19):8442-53.
The mammalian neocortex undergoes dramatic transformation during development, from a seemingly homogenous sheet of neuroepithelial cells into a complex structure that is tangentially divided into discrete areas. This process is thought to be controlled by a combination of intrinsic patterning mechanisms within the cortex and afferent axonal projections from the thalamus. However, roles of thalamic afferents in the formation of areas are still poorly understood. In this study, we show that genetically increasing or decreasing the size of the lateral geniculate nucleus of the mouse thalamus resulted in a corresponding change in the size of the primary visual area. Furthermore, elimination of most thalamocortical projections from the outset of their development resulted in altered areal gene expression patterns, particularly in the primary visual and somatosensory areas, where they lost sharp boundaries with adjacent areas. Together, these results demonstrate the critical roles of thalamic afferents in the establishment of neocortical areas.
- Responses of primate LGN cells to moving stimuli involve a constant background modulation by feedback from area MT. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Neuroscience 2013 May 3.
The feedback connections from the cortical motion area middle temporal (MT), to layer 6 of the primary visual cortex (V1), have the capacity to drive a cascaded feedback influence from the layer 6 cortico-geniculate cells back to the lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN) relay cells. This introduces the possibility of a re-entrant motion signal affecting the relay of the retinal input through the LGN to the visual cortex. The question is whether the response of LGN cells to moving stimuli involves a component derived from this feedback. By producing a reversible focal pharmacological block of the activity of an MT direction column we show the presence of such an influence from MT on the responses of magno, parvo and koniocellular cells in the macaque LGN. The pattern of effect in the LGN reflects the direction bias of the MT location inactivated. This suggests a moving stimulus is captured by iterative interactions in the circuit formed by visual cortical areas and visual thalamus.
- Visual thalamocortical circuits in parvalbumin-deficient mice. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Brain Res 2013 May 2.
The dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN) is considered as the visual gateway to the visual cortex (VC) and sends collaterals to the thalamic reticular nucleus (RTN) that in turn receives collaterals of the corticofugal feedback projections. At all levels of this thalamocortical circuit there are GABAergic neurons expressing the calcium-buffer parvalbumin (PV). The present study reports for the first time the analysis of in vivo extracellular electrophysiological recordings performed simultaneously in dLGN, RTN and VC of anesthetized wild-type (WT) and parvalbumin-deficient (PVKO) mice. The firing rates of VC and RTN cells were increased in PVKO during spontaneous activity as well as in the presence of a photic stimulation (strobe flash at 2.5Hz). Interestingly, dLGN cells in PVKO did not show significant changes in the rate of firing in comparison to WT. dLGN responses to the light flashes were characterized by ripples of inhibition and phasic excitation/rebound. We have analyzed the pattern of functional interactions between pairs of neighboring cells in VC, dLGN and RTN and across these areas in simultaneously recorded thalamocortical triplets, with one neuron from each area. We found that in PVKO the strength of the interactions tended to decrease locally, between neighboring cells, but tended to increase across the areas. The combination of these analyses provides new evidence on the important role played by PV-expression in regulating information processing in the central visual pathway suggesting that the ability to process information along parallel channels is decreased in the thalamocortical pathway of PV-deficient mice. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Neural Coding 2012. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Neural Coding 2012.
- The impact of hemodynamic stress on sensory signal processing in the rodent lateral geniculate nucleus. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Brain Res 2013 Apr 30.
Hemodynamic stress via hypotensive challenge has been shown previously to cause a corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF)-mediated increase in tonic locus coeruleus (LC) activity and consequent release of norepinephrine (NE) in noradrenergic terminal fields. Although alterations in LC-NE can modulate the responsiveness of signal processing neurons along sensory pathways, little is understood regarding how continuous CRF-mediated activation of LC-NE output due to physiologically relevant stressor affects downstream target cell physiology. The goal of the present study was to investigate the effects of a physiological stressor [hemodynamic stress via sodium nitroprusside (SNP) i.v.] on stimulus evoked responses of sensory processing neurons that receive LC inputs. In rat, the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN) of the thalamus is the primary relay for visual information and is a major target of the LC-NE system. We used extracellular recording techniques in the anesthetized rat monitor single dLGN neuron activity during repeated presentation of light stimuli before and during hemodynamic stress. A significant decrease in magnitude occurred, as well as an increase in latency of dLGN stimulus-evoked responses were observed during hemodynamic stress. In another group of animals the CRF antagonist DpheCRF12-41 was infused onto the ipsilateral LC prior to SNP administration. This infusion blocked the hypotension-induced changes in dLGN stimulus-evoked discharge. These results show that CRF-mediated increases in LC-NE due to hemodynamic stress disrupts the transmission of information along thalamic-sensory pathways by: (1) initially reducing signal transmission during onset of the stressor and (2) decreasing the speed of stimulus evoked sensory transmission.
- Reciprocal Homosynaptic and Heterosynaptic Long-Term Plasticity of Corticogeniculate Projection Neurons in Layer VI of the Mouse Visual Cortex. [Journal Article]
- J Neurosci 2013 May 1; 33(18):7787-98.
Most neurons in layer VI of the visual cortex project to the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (dLGN). These corticogeniculate projection neurons (CG cells) receive top-down synaptic inputs from upper layers (ULs) and bottom-up inputs from the underlying white matter (WM). Use-dependent plasticity of these synapses in layer VI of the cortex has received less attention than in other layers. In the present study, we used a retrograde tracer injected into dLGN to identify CG cells, and, by analyzing EPSPs evoked by electrical stimulation of the UL or WM site, examined whether these synapses show long-term synaptic plasticity. Theta-burst stimulation induced long-term potentiation (LTP) of activated synapses (hom-LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) of nonactivated synapses (het-LTD) in either pathway. The paired-pulse stimulation protocol and the analysis of coefficient variation of EPSPs suggested postsynaptic induction of these changes except UL-induced het-LTD, which may be presynaptic in origin. Intracellular injection of a Ca(2+)-chelator suggested an involvement of postsynaptic Ca(2+) rise in all types of long-term plasticity. Pharmacological analysis indicated that NMDA receptors and type-5 metabotropic glutamate receptors are involved in WM-induced and UL-induced plasticity, respectively. Analysis with inhibitors and/or in transgenic mice suggested an involvement of cannabinoid type 1 receptors and calcineurin in UL-induced and WM-induced het-LTD, respectively. These results suggest that hom-LTP and het-LTD may play a role in switching the top-down or bottom-up regulation of CG cell function and/or in maintaining stability of synaptic transmission efficacy through different molecular mechanisms.
- Efficacy and Toxicity of Clioquinol Treatment and A-beta42 Inoculation in the APP/PSI Mouse Model of Alzheimer's Disease. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Curr Alzheimer Res 2013 Apr 30.
Alzheimer's disease (AD), the most common human neurodegenerative disease, is characterized pathologically by numerous deposits of amyloid plaques in the brain. Systemic administration of clioquinol (CQ) and inoculation with amyloid-beta42 (Aβ42) vaccines have been demonstrated to significantly inhibit deposits of amyloid in AD brains. However, each of these treatments has also been reported to be neurotoxic. The generation of transgenic mice models of AD has made it possible to study aspects of this disease employing experimental animals. In the present study, we investigated the efficacy and toxicity of CQ and Aβ42 vaccine in a transgenic AD (APP/PS1) mouse model. Our results confirmed that both CQ and Aβ42 vaccine were effective in significantly reducing the deposits of amyloid in the brains of transgenic AD mice. We also report here that systemic CQ induces myelinopathies in the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (DLG), which was almost devoid of amyloid plaques and is the primary site of retinal efferent projections via the optic nerve. This is the first report that systemic administration of CQ causes myelinopathies in the central nervous system (CNS) of a transgenic AD mouse model as well as wild-type mice. Inoculation with an Aβ42 vaccine was also found, for the first time, to result in a significant increase in plaque-independent astrocytic hyperplasia in the dorsal part of the lateral septal nucleus (LSD) which was also devoid of plaques, reflecting potential brain inflammatory processes.
- Cortical-Like Receptive Fields in the Lateral Geniculate Nucleus of Marmoset Monkeys. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- J Neurosci 2013 Apr 17; 33(16):6864-6876.
Most neurons in primary visual cortex (V1) exhibit high selectivity for the orientation of visual stimuli. In contrast, neurons in the main thalamic input to V1, the lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN), are considered to be only weakly orientation selective. Here we characterize a sparse population of cells in marmoset LGN that show orientation and spatial frequency selectivity as great as that of cells in V1. The recording position in LGN and histological reconstruction of these cells shows that they are part of the koniocellular (K) pathways. Accordingly we have named them K-o ("koniocellular-orientation") cells. Most K-o cells prefer vertically oriented gratings; their contrast sensitivity and TF tuning are similar to those of parvocellular cells, and they receive negligible functional input from short wavelength-sensitive ("blue") cone photoreceptors. Four K-o cells tested displayed binocular responses. Our results provide further evidence that in primates as in nonprimate mammals the cortical input streams include a diversity of visual representations. The presence of K-o cells increases functional homologies between K pathways in primates and "sluggish/W" pathways in nonprimate visual systems.
- Activation of both Group I and Group II metabotropic glutamatergic receptors suppress retinogeniculate transmission. [Journal Article]
- Neuroscience 2013 Jul 9.:78-84.
Relay cells of dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN) receive a Class 1 glutamatergic input from the retina and a Class 2 input from cortical layer 6. Among the properties of Class 2 synapses is the ability to activate metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs), and mGluR activation is known to affect thalamocortical transmission via regulating retinogeniculate and thalamocortical synapses. Using brain slices, we studied the effects of Group I (dihydroxyphenylglycine) and Group II ((2S,2'R,3'R)-2-(2',3'-dicarboxycyclopropyl)glycine) mGluR agonists on retinogeniculate synapses. We showed that both agonists inhibit retinogeniculate excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) through presynaptic mechanisms, and their effects are additive and independent. We also found high-frequency stimulation of the layer 6 corticothalamic input produced a similar suppression of retinogeniculate EPSCs, suggesting layer 6 projection to LGN as a plausible source of activating these presynaptic mGluRs.