Frontiers in Neural Circuits

Publisher: Frontiers

Current impact factor: 3.60

Impact Factor Rankings

2015 Impact Factor Available summer 2016
2014 Impact Factor 3.568
2013 Impact Factor 2.95
2012 Impact Factor 3.333
2011 Impact Factor 5.098

Impact factor over time

Impact factor

Additional details

5-year impact 3.68
Cited half-life 2.00
Immediacy index 0.39
Eigenfactor 0.01
Article influence 1.54
Other titles Frontiers in neural circuits (online)
ISSN 1662-5110
OCLC 250619181
Material type Document, Internet resource
Document type Internet Resource, Computer File, Journal / Magazine / Newspaper

Publisher details


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  • Conditions
    • On open access repositories
    • Authors retain copyright
    • Creative Commons Attribution License
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    • Publisher's version/PDF may be used
    • Set statement to accompany [This Document is Protected by copyright and was first published by Frontiers. All rights reserved. it is reproduced with permission.]
    • Articles are placed in PubMed Central immediately on behalf of authors.
    • All titles are open access journals
    • Publisher last contacted on 16/07/2015
  • Classification

Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Transgenic methods enable the selective manipulation of neurons for functional mapping of neuronal circuits. Using confocal microscopy, we have imaged the cellular-level expression of 109 transgenic lines in live 6 day post fertilization larvae, including 80 Gal4 enhancer trap lines, 9 Cre enhancer trap lines and 20 transgenic lines that express fluorescent proteins in defined gene-specific patterns. Image stacks were acquired at single micron resolution, together with a broadly expressed neural marker, which we used to align enhancer trap reporter patterns into a common 3-dimensional reference space. To facilitate use of this resource, we have written software that enables searching for transgenic lines that label cells within a selectable 3-dimensional region of interest (ROI) or neuroanatomical area. This software also enables the intersectional expression of transgenes to be predicted, a feature which we validated by detecting cells with co-expression of Cre and Gal4. Many of the imaged enhancer trap lines show intrinsic brain-specific expression. However, to increase the utility of lines that also drive expression in non-neuronal tissue we have designed a novel UAS reporter, that suppresses expression in heart, muscle, and skin through the incorporation of microRNA binding sites in a synthetic 3′ untranslated region. Finally, we mapped the site of transgene integration, thus providing molecular identification of the expression pattern for most lines. Cumulatively, this library of enhancer trap lines provides genetic access to 70% of the larval brain and is therefore a powerful and broadly accessible tool for the dissection of neural circuits in larval zebrafish.
    Frontiers in Neural Circuits 11/2015; 9(110). DOI:10.3389/fncir.2015.00078
  • Roxana A. Stefanescu · Susan E. Shore ·
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    ABSTRACT: Auditory information relayed by auditory nerve fibers and somatosensory information relayed by granule cell parallel fibers converge on the fusiform cells (FCs) of the dorsal cochlear nucleus, the first brain station of the auditory pathway. In vitro, parallel fiber synapses on FCs exhibit spike-timing-dependent plasticity with Hebbian learning rules, partially mediated by the NMDA receptor (NMDAr). Well-timed bimodal auditory-somatosensory stimulation, in vivo equivalent of spike-timing-dependent plasticity, can induce stimulus-timing-dependent plasticity (StTDP) of the FCs spontaneous and tone-evoked firing rates. In healthy guinea pigs, the resulting distribution of StTDP learning rules across a FC neural population is dominated by a Hebbian profile while anti-Hebbian, suppressive and enhancing LRs are less frequent. In this study, we investigate in vivo, the NMDAr contribution to FC baseline activity and long term plasticity. We find that blocking the NMDAr decreases the synchronization of FC- spontaneous activity and mediates differential modulation of FC rate-level functions such that low, and high threshold units are more likely to increase, and decrease, respectively, their maximum amplitudes. Three significant alterations in mean learning-rule profiles were identified: transitions from an initial Hebbian profile towards (1) an anti-Hebbian; (2) a suppressive profile; and (3) transitions from an anti-Hebbian to a Hebbian profile. FC units preserving their learning rules showed instead, NMDAr-dependent plasticity to unimodal acoustic stimulation, with persistent depression of tone-evoked responses changing to persistent enhancement following the NMDAr antagonist. These results reveal a crucial role of the NMDAr in mediating FC baseline activity and long-term plasticity which have important implications for signal processing and auditory pathologies related to maladaptive plasticity of dorsal cochlear nucleus circuitry.
    Frontiers in Neural Circuits 11/2015; 9. DOI:10.3389/fncir.2015.00075
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    ABSTRACT: The ventral nucleus of the lateral lemniscus (VNLL) provides a major inhibitory projection to the inferior colliculus (IC). Neurons in the VNLL respond with various firing patterns and different temporal precision to acoustic stimulation. The present study investigates the underlying intrinsic and synaptic properties of various cell types in different regions of the VNLL, using in vitro electrophysiological recordings from acute brain slices of mice and immunohistochemistry. We show that the biophysical membrane properties and excitatory input characteristics differed between dorsal and ventral VNLL neurons. Neurons in the ventral VNLL displayed an onset-type firing pattern and little hyperpolarization-activated current (Ih). Stimulation of lemniscal inputs evoked a large all-or-none excitatory response similar to Calyx of Held synapses in neurons in the lateral part of the ventral VNLL. Neurons that were located within the fiber tract of the lateral lemniscus, received several and weak excitatory input fibers. In the dorsal VNLL onset-type and sustained firing neurons were intermingled. These neurons showed large Ih and were strongly immunopositive for the hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated channel 1 (HCN1) subunit. Both neuron types received several excitatory inputs that were weaker and slower compared to ventrolateral VNLL neurons. Using a mouse model that expresses channelrhodopsin under the promotor of the vesicular GABA transporter (VGAT) suggests that dorsal and ventral neurons were inhibitory since they were all depolarized by light stimulation. The diverse membrane and input properties in dorsal and ventral VNLL neurons suggest differential roles of these neurons for sound processing.
    Frontiers in Neural Circuits 11/2015; 9. DOI:10.3389/fncir.2015.00074
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    ABSTRACT: The Drosophila mushroom body (MB) is an associative learning network that is important for the control of sleep. We have recently identified particular intrinsic MB Kenyon cell (KC) classes that regulate sleep through synaptic activation of particular MB output neurons (MBONs) whose axons convey sleep control signals out of the MB to downstream target regions. Specifically, we found that sleep-promoting KCs increase sleep by preferentially activating cholinergic sleep-promoting MBONs, while wake-promoting KCs decrease sleep by preferentially activating glutamatergic wake-promoting MBONs. Here we use a combination of genetic and physiological approaches to identify wake-promoting dopaminergic neurons (DANs) that innervate the MB, and show that they activate wake-promoting MBONs. These studies reveal a dopaminergic sleep control mechanism that likely operates by modulation of KC-MBON microcircuits.
    Frontiers in Neural Circuits 11/2015; 9(303). DOI:10.3389/fncir.2015.00073
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    ABSTRACT: Antidepressants (ADs) are used as first-line treatment for most stress-related psychiatric disorders. The alterations in brain circuit dynamics that can arise from stress exposure and underlie therapeutic actions of ADs remain, however, poorly understood. Here, enabled by a recently developed voltage-sensitive dye imaging (VSDI) assay in mouse brain slices, we examined the impact of chronic stress and concentration-dependent effects of eight clinically used ADs (belonging to different chemical/functional classes) on evoked neuronal activity propagations through the hippocampal trisynaptic circuitry (HTC: perforant path → dentate gyrus (DG) → area CA3 → area CA1). Exposure of mice to chronic social defeat stress led to markedly weakened activity propagations (“HTC-Waves”). In contrast, at concentrations in the low micromolar range, all ADs, which were bath applied to slices, caused an amplification of HTC-Waves in CA regions (invariably in area CA1). The fast-acting “antidepressant” ketamine, the mood stabilizer lithium, and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) exerted comparable enhancing effects, whereas the antipsychotic haloperidol and the anxiolytic diazepam attenuated HTC-Waves. Collectively, we provide direct experimental evidence that chronic stress can depress neuronal signal flow through the HTC and demonstrate shared opposing effects of ADs. Thus, our study points to a circuit-level mechanism of ADs to counteract stress-induced impairment of hippocampal network function. However, the observed effects of ADs are impossible to depend on enhanced neurogenesis.
    Frontiers in Neural Circuits 11/2015; 9. DOI:10.3389/fncir.2015.00070
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    ABSTRACT: When Hubel (1982) referred to layer 1 of primary visual cortex as “… a ‘crowning mystery’ to keep area-17 physiologists busy for years to come …” he could have been talking about any cortical area. In the 80’s and 90’s there were no methods to examine this neuropile on the surface of the cortex: a tangled web of axons and dendrites from a variety of different places with unknown specificities and doubtful connections to the cortical output neurons some hundreds of microns below. Recently, three changes have made the crowning enigma less of an impossible mission: the clear presence of neurons in layer 1 (L1), the active conduction of voltage along apical dendrites and optogenetic methods that might allow us to look at one source of input at a time. For all of those reasons alone, it seems it is time to take seriously the function of L1. The functional properties of this layer will need to wait for more experiments but already L1 cells are GAD67 positive, i.e., inhibitory! They could reverse the sign of the thalamic glutamate (GLU) input for the entire cortex. It is at least possible that in the near future normal activity of individual sources of L1 could be detected using genetic tools. We are at the outset of important times in the exploration of thalamic functions and perhaps the solution to the crowning enigma is within sight. Our review looks forward to that solution from the solid basis of the anatomy of the basal ganglia output to motor thalamus. We will focus on L1, its afferents, intrinsic neurons and its influence on responses of pyramidal neurons in layers 2/3 and 5. Since L1 is present in the whole cortex we will provide a general overview considering evidence mainly from the somatosensory (S1) cortex before focusing on motor cortex.
    Frontiers in Neural Circuits 11/2015; 9. DOI:10.3389/fncir.2015.00071
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    ABSTRACT: To make precise and prompt action in a dynamic environment, the sensorimotor system needs to integrate all related information. The inflow of somatosensory information to the cerebral cortex is regulated and mostly suppressed by movement, which is commonly referred to as sensory gating or gating. Sensory gating plays an important role in preventing redundant information from reaching the cortex, which should be considered when designing somatosensory neuroprosthetics. Gating can occur at several levels within the sensorimotor pathway, while the underlying mechanism is not yet fully understood. The average sensory evoked potential is commonly used to assess sensory information processing, however the assumption of a stereotyped response to each stimulus is still an open question. Event related spectral perturbation (ERSP), which is the power spectrum after time-frequency decomposition on single trial evoked potentials (total power), could overcome this limitation of averaging and provide additional information for understanding the underlying mechanism. To this aim, neural activities in primary somatosensory cortex (S1), primary motor cortex (M1), and ventral posterolateral (VPL) nucleus of thalamus were recorded simultaneously in two areas (S1 and M1 or S1 and VPL) during passive arm movement and rest in awake monkeys. Our results showed that neural activity at different recording areas demonstrated specific and unique response frequency characteristics. Tactile input induced early high frequency responses followed by low frequency oscillations within sensorimotor circuits, and passive movement suppressed these oscillations either in a phase-locked or non-phase-locked manner. Sensory gating by movement was non-phase-locked in M1, and complex in sensory areas. VPL showed gating of non-phase-locked at gamma band and mix of phase-locked and non-phase-locked at low frequency, while S1 showed gating of phase-locked and non-phase-locked at gamma band and an early phase-locked elevation followed by non-phase-locked gating at low frequency. Granger causality (GC) analysis showed bidirectional coupling between VPL and S1, while GC between M1 and S1 was not responsive to tactile input. Thus, these results suggest that tactile input is dominantly transmitted along the ascending direction from VPL to S1, and the sensory input is suppressed during movement through a bottom-up strategy within the gamma-band during passive movement.
    Frontiers in Neural Circuits 10/2015; 9. DOI:10.3389/fncir.2015.00064
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    ABSTRACT: Experimental and computational studies demonstrate that different sets of intrinsic and synaptic conductances can give rise to equivalent activity patterns. This is because the balance of conductances, not their absolute values, defines a given activity feature. Activity-dependent feedback mechanisms maintain neuronal conductance correlations and their corresponding activity features. This study demonstrates that tonic nM concentrations of monoamines enable slow, activity-dependent processes that can maintain a correlation between the transient potassium current (IA) and the hyperpolarization activated current (Ih) over the long-term (i.e., regulatory change persists for hours after removal of modulator). Tonic 5 nM DA acted through an RNA interference silencing complex (RISC)- and RNA polymerase II-dependent mechanism to maintain a long-term positive correlation between IA and Ih in the lateral pyloric neuron (LP) but not in the pyloric dilator neuron (PD). In contrast, tonic 5 nM 5HT maintained a RISC-dependent positive correlation between IA and Ih in PD but not LP over the long-term. Tonic 5 nM OCT maintained a long-term negative correlation between IA and Ih in PD but not LP; however, it was only revealed when RISC was inhibited. This study also demonstrated that monoaminergic tone can also preserve activity features over the long-term: the timing of LP activity, LP duty cycle and LP spike number per burst were maintained by tonic 5 nM DA. The data suggest that low-level monoaminergic tone acts through multiple slow processes to permit cell-specific, activity-dependent regulation of ionic conductances to maintain conductance correlations and their corresponding activity features over the long-term.
    Frontiers in Neural Circuits 10/2015; 9. DOI:10.3389/fncir.2015.00063

  • Frontiers in Neural Circuits 10/2015; 9. DOI:10.3389/fncir.2015.00061
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    ABSTRACT: Although the importance of long-range connections for cortical information processing has been acknowledged for a long time, most studies focused on the long-range interactions between excitatory cortical neurons. Inhibitory interneurons play an important role in cortical computation and have thus far been studied mainly with respect to their local synaptic interactions within the cortical microcircuitry. A recent study showed that long-range excitatory connections onto Martinotti cells (MC) mediate surround suppression. Here we have extended our previously reported attractor network of pyramidal cells (PC) and MC by introducing long-range connections targeting MC. We have demonstrated how the network with Martinotti cell-mediated long-range inhibition gives rise to surround suppression and also promotes saliency of locations at which simple non-uniformities in the stimulus field are introduced. Furthermore, our analysis suggests that the presynaptic dynamics of MC is only ancillary to its orientation tuning property in enabling the network with saliency detection. Lastly, we have also implemented a disinhibitory pathway mediated by another interneuron type (VIP interneurons), which inhibits MC and abolishes surround suppression.
    Frontiers in Neural Circuits 10/2015; 9. DOI:10.3389/fncir.2015.00060