Trans-synaptic modulation of striatal ACh release in vivo by the parafascicular thalamic nucleus
Electrical stimulation of the parafascicular but not the ventrolateral or dorsomedial thalamic nucleus (ten 0.5 ms, 10 V pulses, 140 microA) of freely moving rats induced a frequency-dependent (2.5, 5, 10 and 20 Hz) increase in the extracellular acetylcholine (ACh) content of the dorsal striatum, assessed by trans-striatal microdialysis. The time-dependent effect of 10 Hz stimulation was studied. The peak increase, 39% above baseline, was attained during 4 min of stimulation. This was blocked by coperfusion with 5 microM tetrodotoxin, indicating that the release we measured represents a physiological process. The facilitatory effect of parafascicular nucleus stimulation does not appear to be associated with indirect action through the cerebral frontal cortex because acute lesion of the excitatory corticostriatal afferents, which by itself reduced basal ACh release by 40%, did not modify the effect of 10 Hz stimulation. The possible involvement of the fasciculus retroflexus in the facilitation of ACh release was also ruled out. The non-competitive NMDA-type receptor antagonist MK-801, applied by reversed dialysis (30 microM) or systemically injected (0.2 mg/kg), significantly reduced the basal ACh output and prevented the tetanus-evoked increase in ACh release. The results provide in vivo evidence that the activity of the cholinergic neurons in the dorsal striatum is trans-synaptically modulated by parafascicular nucleus excitatory afferents through activation of the NMDA subtype of glutamate receptors that is probably located in the striatum.
[Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Because of our limited knowledge of the functional role of the thalamostriatal system, this massive network is often ignored in models of the pathophysiology of brain disorders of basal ganglia origin, such as Parkinson's disease (PD). However, over the past decade, significant advances have led to a deeper understanding of the anatomical, electrophysiological, behavioral and pathological aspects of the thalamostriatal system. The cloning of the vesicular glutamate transporters 1 and 2 (vGluT1 and vGluT2) has provided powerful tools to differentiate thalamostriatal from corticostriatal glutamatergic terminals, allowing us to carry out comparative studies of the synaptology and plasticity of these two systems in normal and pathological conditions. Findings from these studies have led to the recognition of two thalamostriatal systems, based on their differential origin from the caudal intralaminar nuclear group, the center median/parafascicular (CM/Pf) complex, or other thalamic nuclei. The recent use of optogenetic methods supports this model of the organization of the thalamostriatal systems, showing differences in functionality and glutamate receptor localization at thalamostriatal synapses from Pf and other thalamic nuclei. At the functional level, evidence largely gathered from thalamic recordings in awake monkeys strongly suggests that the thalamostriatal system from the CM/Pf is involved in regulating alertness and switching behaviors. Importantly, there is evidence that the caudal intralaminar nuclei and their axonal projections to the striatum partly degenerate in PD and that CM/Pf deep brain stimulation (DBS) may be therapeutically useful in several movement disorders.0Comments 18Citations
- "A new rat brain slice preparation that partly preserved thalamostriatal axons (Smeal et al., 2007) has enabled studies of the chemical and functional properties of thalamostriatal synapses and the potential relationships between thalamostriatal and corticostriatal systems in normal state (Ding et al., 2008; Smeal et al., 2008). Using this preparation, the ratio of NMDA/non-NMDA glutamatergic receptors was found to be higher at thalamic than cortical synapses (Ding et al., 2008; Smeal et al., 2008), an observation that extends earlier neurochemical studies in adult rats (Baldi et al., 1995; Consolo et al., 1996a,b). This slice preparation has also lead to additional data suggesting that the thalamostriatal system gates corticostriatal signaling via activation of striatal cholinergic interneurons, and that this functional interaction might be altered in mouse model of dystonia (Ding et al., 2008; Sciamanna et al., 2012). "
[Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recent evidence suggests that a circuit involving the centromedian-parafascicular (Pf) thalamus and basal ganglia is critical for a shift away from biased actions. In particular, excitatory input from the Pf onto striatal cholinergic neurons may facilitate behavioral flexibility. Accumulating evidence indicates that an endogenous increase in dorsomedial striatal acetylcholine (ACh) output enhances behavioral flexibility. The present experiments investigated whether the rat (Rattus norvegicus) Pf supports flexibility during reversal learning, in part, by modifying dorsomedial striatal ACh output. This was determined first by examining the effects of Pf inactivation, through infusion of the GABA agonists baclofen and muscimol, on place acquisition and reversal learning. Additional experiments examined Pf inactivation on dorsomedial striatal ACh output during reversal learning and a resting condition. Behavioral testing was performed in a cross-maze. In vivo microdialysis combined with HPLC/electrochemical detection was used to sample ACh from the dorsomedial striatum. Pf inactivation selectively impaired reversal learning in a dose-dependent manner. A subsequent study showed that an increase in dorsomedial striatal ACh efflux (∼30% above basal levels) during reversal learning was blocked by Pf inactivation, which concomitantly impaired reversal learning. In the resting condition, a dose of baclofen and muscimol that blocked a behaviorally induced increase in dorsomedial striatal ACh output did not reduce basal ACh efflux. Together, the present findings indicate that the Pf is an intralaminar thalamic nucleus critical for behavioral flexibility, in part, by directly affecting striatal ACh output under conditions that require a shift in choice patterns.0Comments 32Citations
- "However, Bac- Mus infusions into several thalamic areas bordering the Pf did not impair reversal learning. Furthermore, stimulation of thalamic subregions and fiber tracts bordering the Pf do not affect striatal ACh output, in contrast to direct stimulation of the Pf (Baldi et al., 1995). Another possibility is that Pf inactivation altered striatal ACh output during reversal learning indirectly, by affecting activity in frontal cortex areas which project to the dorsomedial striatum. "
[Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The case of HM, a man with intractable epilepsy who became amnesic following bilateral medial temporal lobe surgery nearly half a century ago has instigated ongoing research and theoretical speculation on the nature of memory and the role of the hippocampus. Neuropsychological testing showed that although HM had extensive anterograde memory loss he could still acquire motor and cognitive skills implicitly, but could not remember the context of this learning. This has lead to declarative and procedural descriptions of the memory process. Cholinergic and monoaminergic neurotransmitter systems have also been implicated in the memory process and anticholinergic drugs traditionally have been associated with impairment of declarative memory. The cholinergic hypothesis of Alzheimer's disease is a classic example of an application of these neuropharmacological findings. In schizophrenia, preattentive deficits have been amply demonstrated by unconscious priming studies. Memory processes are also impaired in these patients. Dopamine, glutamate and even cholinergic dysfunction has been implicated in the clinical picture of schizophrenia. The present paper will attempt to bring together both the anatomical and pharmacological data from these disparate fields of research under a cohesive theory of cognition and memory. A hypothesis is presented for an inverse relationship between monoaminergic and cholinergic systems in the modulation of implicit (unconscious) and explicit (conscious) cognitive processes. It is postulated that muscarinic cholinergic receptors and monoaminergic systems facilitate unconscious and conscious processes, respectively, and they disfacilitate conscious and unconscious processes, respectively (the purported inverse relationship). In fact, the muscarinic and monoaminergic modulations of a neural network are proposed to be finely balanced such that, if, the activity of one receptor system is modified then this by necessity has effects on the other system. It takes into account receptor subtypes and their effects mediated through excitatory and inhibitory G-protein complexes. For example, m1/D2 and D1/m4 paired receptor subtypes, colocalized on separate neurons would have opposing functional effects. A theory is then presented that the critical underlying pathophysiology of schizophrenia involves a hypofunctional muscarinic cholinergic system, which induces abnormal facilitation of monoaminergic subsystems such as dopamine (e.g., a decrease in m1R function would potentiate D2R function). This extends the idea of an inverted U function for optimal monoaminergic concentrations. Not only would this impair unconscious preattentive processes, but according to the hypothesis, explicit cognition as well including memory deficits and would underlie the mechanism of psychosis. Contrary to current thinking a different view is also presented for the role of the hippocampus in the memory process. It is postulated that long-term explicit memory traces in the neocortex are laid down by phasic coactivation of forebrain projecting monoaminergic systems above some basal firing rate, such as the rostral serotonergic raphe, which projects diffusely to the cortex and according to a modified Hebbian principle. This is the proposed principal function of the hippocampal theta rhythm. The phasic activation of the cholinergic basal forebrain is mediated by projections from a separate cortical structure, possibly the lateral prefrontal cortex. Phasic muscarinic receptor activation is proposed to strengthen implicit memory traces (at a synaptic level) in the neocortex. Thus, the latter are spared by medial temporal surgery explaining the dissociation of explicit from implicit memory.0Comments 18Citations
- "The intralaminar projections stimulate cholinergic interneurons via NMDA receptors. Stimulation of the ventral motor nuclei, which have a comparable projection to the striatum , does not result in a significant increase in striatal ACh levels . This very specific and intriguing finding is nonetheless readily explained by the original hypothesis of the ILN group serving simple premotor networks and the current proposal of a differential association of unconscious networks with cholinergic modulation. "