30 entries

Chronic oxotremorine treatment ameliorates depressive phenotype in a rodent model of Alzheimer’s disease

Nair DV, Al-Badri MM, Peng H, Schenkman N, Pacheco-Quinto J, Eckman CB, Iacono D, Eckman EA (2014) Chronic oxotremorine treatment ameliorates depressive phenotype in a rodent model of Alzheimer’s disease. Neuroscience 2014 Abstracts 670.03. Society for Neuroscience, Washington, DC.

Summary: Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a progressive neurodegenerative condition that is characterized by changes to brain structure and function. It is estimated that depression and other neuropsychiatric symptoms occur in up to 90% of AD patients, yet the neurobiological basis of these symptoms and their influence on the clinical course of AD remain unclear. Using a rat model of AD-like basal forebrain cholinergic cell loss, our lab has previously shown that central administration of a muscarinic receptor agonist, oxotremorine, for 4 weeks could induce hippocampal neurogenesis and reverse the spatial working memory deficit triggered by cholinergic denervation. Preliminary experiments conducted with this model in our lab also revealed a depressive phenotype emerging between 11 and 15 weeks after cholinergic denervation. The depressive phenotype was detected using a sucrose consumption test and further confirmed by forced swim test. The goal of the present study was to determine whether effects of chronic oxotremorine treatment could ameliorate the depressive phenotype observed after selective cholinergic cell loss in the basal forebrain. Adult female Sprague Dawley rats were injected intracerebroventricularly (icv) with the immunotoxin 192-IgG-saporin (SAP), to induce AD-like basal forebrain cholinergic cell loss. After a 5 week recovery period, the rats then received 8 weeks of icv infusion of either oxotremorine or vehicle (saline) via osmotic minipump. Behavioral testing to assess the depressive phenotype was carried out using the sucrose consumption test every 2 weeks during oxotremorine treatment. The phenotype was further confirmed by forced swim test. Biochemical analysis of a range of markers including tryptophan hydroxylase, the rate limiting enzyme for synthesis of serotonin, was performed after extraction of the brains following the behavioral tests. Results of these experiments demonstrate that oxotremorine treatment prevents the development of the depressive phenotype in SAP-lesioned rats. A number of oxotremorine-treated rats showed increases in tryptophan hydroxylase, suggesting a possible mechanism for the improved behavioral phenotype Based on these data, we propose that 192-IgG saporin lesioned rats may be an effective model for studying the pathophysiology and therapeutic modulation of age- and neurodegeneration-related neuropsychiatric symptoms such as depression.

Related Products: 192-IgG-SAP (Cat. #IT-01)

Impairments in gait, posture and complex movement control in rats modeling the multi-system, cholinergic-dopaminergic losses in PD.

Phillips K, Kucinski A, Albin R, Sarter M (2014) Impairments in gait, posture and complex movement control in rats modeling the multi-system, cholinergic-dopaminergic losses in PD. Neuroscience 2014 Abstracts 692.21. Society for Neuroscience, Washington, DC.

Summary: In addition to striatal dopamine loss, degeneration of cholinergic neurons in the basal forebrain (BF) and the brainstem pedunculopontine nucleus (PPN) were documented in patients with Parkinson’s disease (PD). Loss of cholinergic projections to cortical, thalamic and midbrain regions have been associated with impairments in gait and postural control and a propensity for falls. We previously demonstrated that loss of cortical cholinergic inputs and the resulting impairments in attentional control ‘unmask’ gait and postural risk factors and thus yielded falls in rats with striatal dopamine loss (Kucinski et al., 2013). For this research we developed a new behavior task for the assessment of gait, postural control, and fall propensity (Michigan Complex Motor Control Task; MCMCT). Here, to determine the contributions of the PPN cholinergic projection system to complex movement control, we also lesioned the cholinergic pars compacta (posterior) division of the PPN by infusing anti-ChAT saporin-coupled immunotoxin. Rats received these lesions either in combination with BF cholinergic (192-IgG-saporin) or dorsomedial striatal dopamine loss (6-OHDA), or all three lesions together (“triples”). MCMCT performance by triples was characterized by more falls than in rats with just PPN lesions, PPN plus striatal dopamine loss, or rats with loss of both BF and PPN cholinergic neurons. High fall rates in triples persisted throughout the 20-day MCMCT testing sequence, indicating that daily practice did not improve the interactions between loss of attentional control and gait and postural deficits that underlie falls. Interestingly, combined loss of BF and PPN cholinergic neurons increased falls relative to controls and single lesions, suggesting that ascending cholinergic PPN loss sufficiently dysregulates striatal dopamine input for BF cholinergic cell loss to ‘unmask’ the impact of the former on striatal dysfunction. Finally, PPN cholinergic cell loss resulted in ballistic postural (recovery) movements and slip-triggered switches to asymmetrical gait. Such behavior was previously observed in rats after electrolytic lesions of the PPN region, considered a model of “Parkinsonian festination” (Cheng et al., 1981) and it may assist in maintaining balance by stabilizing the center of gravity. Collectively, our findings support the hypothesis that PPN cholinergic projections contribute to the mediation of gait symmetry and postural control, and when lesioned in combination with forebrain cholinergic and dopaminergic system, results in profound impairments in the control of complex movements. This research was supported by the Michael J. Fox Foundation.

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The role of the basal forebrain cholinergic neurons in cued extinction memory

Schreiber WB, Keller S, Knox D (2014) The role of the basal forebrain cholinergic neurons in cued extinction memory. Neuroscience 2014 Abstracts 748.01. Society for Neuroscience, Washington, DC.

Summary: Fear extinction learning and memory requires inhibition of neural activity in amygdala (AMY) nuclei driven by neural substrates in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC), resulting in the behavioral phenotype of a decreased fear response (e.g. low levels of conditioned freezing). Fear extinction memory retrieval is sensitive to contextual feature manipulations, rendering extinction memory retrieval sensitive to hippocampal (HIPP) input to the AMY. Function of the vmPFC and HIPP requires cholinergic innervation from basal forebrain cholinergic neurons (BFCNs), including neurons in the nucleus basalis (NB), horizontal diagonal band of Broca (hDBB), vertical diagonal band of Broca (vDBB), and medial septum (MS). Given the importance of the vmPFC and HIPP for extinction memory, we hypothesized that intact BFCNs would be critical for extinction memory. We found that complete BFCN lesions using 192 IgG-saporin disrupted acquisition of cued fear extinction memory (Experiment 1). Follow-up studies examining more restrictive cholinergic lesions of the MS/vDBB (Experiment 2) or the NB/hDBB (Experiment 3) suggest these two clusters of BFCNs may differentially modulate acquisition and retention of cued extinction memory. The overall results of this study suggest that BFCNs are a component of the fear extinction circuit and a potential target for the pharmacological treatment of psychological disorders thought to stem from extinction memory deficits (e.g. PTSD).

Related Products: 192-IgG-SAP (Cat. #IT-01)

Is selective hippocampal cholinergic deafferentation sufficient to produce temporally graded retrograde amnesia?

Köppen JR, Stuebing SS, Sieg M, Blackwell AA, Blankenship P, Grisley ED, Cheatwood JL, Wallace DG (2014) Is selective hippocampal cholinergic deafferentation sufficient to produce temporally graded retrograde amnesia?. Neuroscience 2014 Abstracts 749.20. Society for Neuroscience, Washington, DC.

Summary: Dementia of the Alzheimer’s type (DAT) is a neurodegenerative disorder marked by degeneration of basal forebrain structures and is associated with significant mnemonic deficits. The current study used a rat string-pulling task to evaluate whether selective cholinergic deafferentation of the hippocampus is sufficient to produce temporally graded retrograde amnesia. Female rats were pre-trained to pull strings to obtain reinforcement (cashew). Subsequently, rats were trained to discriminate between two scented strings. One scented string was consistently reinforced (+A), while the other scented string was never reinforced (B). After rats met criterion, they either waited two weeks (recent) or six weeks (remote) prior to receiving a sham surgery or infusion of 192-IgG-Saporin into the medial septum. Two weeks later rats were given four days of reversal training during which they experienced the same scented strings; however, the cashew was at the end of the string that was not previously reinforced. Following reversal training, rats were trained on a novel discrimination (+C/D). The results of the current study are consistent with selective cholinergic deafferentation of the hippocampus being sufficient to produce retrograde amnesia that was not temporally graded. First, all rats met criterion in a similar number of days. Rats receiving infusion of 192-IgG-Saporin into the medial septum had a higher number of correct responses during reversal training, relative to sham rats; however, no group differences were observed between recent and remote groups. Next, there were no group differences in the ability to learn a new discrimination. Finally, no group differences we observed in the latency to approach and pull up the string. The results were not caused by deficits in motivation or motor function, but they do reflect impairments in mnemonic function. The current study provides a novel behavioral assessment technique that models the retrograde amnesia characteristics observed in DAT.

Related Products: 192-IgG-SAP (Cat. #IT-01)

The galantamine prodrug, Memogain®, reverses deficits in hippocampal neurogenesis associated with the loss of basal forebrain cholinergic neurons

Van Kampen JM, Kay DG, Maelicke A (2014) The galantamine prodrug, Memogain®, reverses deficits in hippocampal neurogenesis associated with the loss of basal forebrain cholinergic neurons. Neuroscience 2014 Abstracts 789.21. Society for Neuroscience, Washington, DC.

Summary: Loss of basal forebrain cholinergic innervation of the hippocampus and severe neuronal loss within the hippocampal CA1 region are early hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), and are strongly correlated with cognitive status. This loss of cholinergic innervation is a key factor underlying alterations in hippocampal neurogenesis, which are also characteristic of AD. We have previously reported the effects of various cholinergic compounds on hippocampal neurogenesis indicating that acetylcholine serves as a potent neurogenic regulator. Memogain® (GLN 1062) is an inactive galantamine pro-drug with 15 fold higher brain availability than galantamine. It is designed to provide improved blood brain barrier penetration, greater potency, and fewer side effects than the cholinesterase inhibitors currently used for the treatment of Alzheimer’s dementia. This would serve both to promote patient adherence and permit the use of higher doses. Galantamine is unique among the cholinesterase inhibitors in that it also has allosteric actions at α-7 nicotinic receptors, activation of which has been linked to both disease-modifying and cognitive enhancing effects, as well as effects on hippocampal cell proliferation. Here, we describe the neurogenic actions of Memogain® in a rodent model of cholinergic depletion. Infusion of the immunotoxin, 192IgG saporin (SAP), used to induce selective basal forebrain cholinergic cell loss reminiscent of that found in AD, resulted in a pronounced loss of basal forebrain cholinergic neurons and hippocampal ChAT fiber density. Consistent with earlier reports, SAP-lesioned animals had significantly fewer BrdU+ and PCNA+ cells in both the dentate gyrus and CA1 region of the hippocampus, when compared to sham-operated control animals. These animals also displayed significant impairments in spatial working memory, as assessed by a T-maze and the radial arm maze. By contrast, animals treated with Memogain® displayed a restoration of hippocampal cell proliferation, increased neuronal cell counts, normalized neuronal migration, and improvements in cognitive function. Thus, the beneficial effects of Memogain® may extend beyond acute cognitive enhancement, to include disease modification through support of hippocampal neurogenesis.

Related Products: 192-IgG-SAP (Cat. #IT-01)

The effects of targeted intracerebral saporin injection on recovery from stroke

Becker A, Goldberg M (2014) The effects of targeted intracerebral saporin injection on recovery from stroke. Neuroscience 2014 Abstracts 800.09. Society for Neuroscience, Washington, DC.

Summary: It is well known that the diffuse neuromodulatory systems of the brain play a role in cortical plasticity that may extend to cortical reorganization after brain injury. The basal forebrain cholinergic system in particular is necessary for both cortical plasticity and behavioral recovery from cortical electrolytic lesions. The role of the cholinergic system in recovery from stroke has never been directly investigated. In this experiment, we asked the question: is the basal forebrain cholinergic system in the mouse necessary for behavioral recovery from stroke? To answer this question, we administered intracerebral injections of the selective immunotoxin mu p75-saporin bilaterally to the cholinergic nucleus basalis in young adult mice. Using choline acetyltransferase immunohisochemistry, cresyl violet staining, and fluoro-jade B staining we discovered a dose at which these injections eliminate local cholinergic neurons while leaving other cell types and cholinergic cells outside the nucleus basalis unharmed. We report the effects of these injections on behavioral recovery from a subsequently induced photothrombotic cortical ischemic stroke.

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Contribution of hindbrain catecholamine neurons to orexin-induced feeding

Li A-J, Wang Q, Davis H, Ritter S (2014) Contribution of hindbrain catecholamine neurons to orexin-induced feeding. Neuroscience 2014 Abstracts 834.08. Society for Neuroscience, Washington, DC.

Summary: Both lateral hypothalamic orexinergic neurons and hindbrain catecholaminergic neurons contribute to feeding behavior. In addition, both phenotypes are widely distributed in the brain and their terminal sites are in many cases overlapping. In the hindbrain, both orexin receptor subtypes (OX1R and OX2R) have been found in close proximity to dopamine-β-hydroxylase (DBH)-expressing cell bodies, raising the question of whether orexin stimulates feeding by activating catecholamine neurons. We tested this hypothesis in the present study. First, we implanted rats with fourth ventricular (4V) cannulas and tested feeding in response to 4V injection of orexin (0.5 nmol). Orexin stimulated feeding in rats, and this stimulation was abolished in rats given paraventricular hypothalamic injections of the retrogradely-transported immunotoxin, anti-DBH-saporin, which targets and destroys DBH-expressing neurons. We then examined hindbrain c-Fos expression in normal rats in response to 4V injection of the same orexin dose that stimulated food intake. Using multiple immunofluorescent labels and confocal microscopy we found that most of the orexin-induced c-Fos-immunoreactive (-ir) neurons in the dorsomedial and ventrolateral medulla were DBH-ir and, moreover, that orexin-ir varicosities were situated in close proximity to the Fos-expressing DBH-ir soma. Together these results suggest that orexin stimulates feeding, at least in part, by activating hindbrain catecholamine neurons.

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Vagus nerve stimulation dependent enhancement of cortical plasticity requires cholinergic innervation of the cortex

Hulsey D, Hays S, Khodaparast, N, Casavant R, Ruiz A, Das P, Nutting E, Carrier X, Iyengar M, Quareshi I, Sultana S, Rennaker R, Kilgard M (2014) Vagus nerve stimulation dependent enhancement of cortical plasticity requires cholinergic innervation of the cortex. Neuroscience 2014 Abstracts 542.20. Society for Neuroscience, Washington, DC.

Summary: Primary motor cortex (M1) transiently reorganizes in response to motor skill learning. Pairing forelimb movements with Vagus Nerve Stimulation (VNS) drives enhanced and robust analogous plasticity within M1. These changes occur outside of the typical period for motor plasticity and are independent of new skill learning. The mechanism by which VNS enhances M1 plasticity is not well understood. Skill learning and the associated cortical plasticity is dependent on cholinergic innervation of the cortex. VNS may enhance plasticity by engaging neuromodulatory systems necessary for plasticity. We hypothesize that cholinergic innervation of M1 is necessary for motor plasticity associated with VNS pairing. To test this hypothesis, we trained female Sprague Dawley rats on a skilled lever pressing task emphasizing use of the proximal forelimb. After task acquisition, one group of rats received a lesion to the cholinergic neurons of the basal forebrain using 192-IgG-Saporin, while another group received a control injection. All subjects also received a VNS cuff implant during the surgery. After one week of recovery, all subjects receive VNS paired to successful task performances for five days. Intracortical microstimulation was performed to derive M1 maps of each group 24 hours after their final VNS paired session. Subjects with an intact cholinergic system show significant expansion of proximal forelimb representation over naïve animals within the cortex. Subjects without cholinergic innervation of the cortex show no difference in M1 organization when compared to naïve animals. We conclude that cholinergic innervation is necessary for the effects of VNS on motor plasticity.

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Immunolesions of melanopsin receptive neurons in the adult Pekin drake attenuates the hormonal reproductive axis

Fraley GS (2014) Immunolesions of melanopsin receptive neurons in the adult Pekin drake attenuates the hormonal reproductive axis. Neuroscience 2014 Abstracts 543.01. Society for Neuroscience, Washington, DC.

Summary: Several light sensitive receptors have been described in the avian brain that are thought to regulate the reproductive axis independently from the eyes and pineal gland. Recently, my lab has described the presence of three of these photoneuroendocrine systems in the Pekin duck: opsin, opsin 5, and melanopsin. I set out to test the hypothesis that melanopsin receptive neurons are necessary to maintain seasonal reproductive status in the Pekin drake. To accomplish this, 50-week-old Pekin drakes were housed in the aviary at Hope College under long day length (18 hrs lights on) conditions in floor pens (5 drakes per pen). To specifically lesion melanopsin-receptive neurons, drakes were anethestized (8 mg/kg Propofol, IV), given analgesics (2 mg/kg ketfen, SC) skin incised and a trephine hole drilled 10 mm caudal to bony orbits and 1 mm to the left of midline. A 33 gauge stainless steel needle attached to a Hamilton syringe was lowered stereotactically 3.5 mm ventral to dura into the lateral ventricle. Three microliters of an anti-melanopsin-saporin conjugate (MSAP, 100 ng/ul) was injected into the lateral ventricle (n = 10). Control drakes were injected with 3 ul of equimolar unconjugated anti-melanopsin and saporin (SAP, n = 10). The incision was closed with VetBond, and the drakes returned to the aviary after complete recovery from anesthesia. After 4 weeks, birds were euthanized (400 mg/kg FatalPlus, IP) and body weight measured, and brains, pituitaries, and testes collected and stored for analyses. MSAP-treated drakes had significantly (p < 0.001) reduced relative teste weights compared to SAP controls. qRT-PCR analyses (n = 5 per treatment) of anterior pituitary showed a significant reduction (p < 0.001) in both LH-beta and FSH mRNA’s. Immunoctyochemical analyses (n = 5 per treatment) showed a significant reduction in melanopsin and GnRH-immunoreactivities. These data underscore the importance of the photoneuroendocrine system in maintaining the reproductive axis in seasonally breeding birds.

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Involvement of kndy neurons in luteinizing hormone surges induced by steroids

Helena CV, Toporikova N, Kalil B, Stathopoulos AM, Anselmo-Franci JA, Bertram R (2014) Involvement of kndy neurons in luteinizing hormone surges induced by steroids. Neuroscience 2014 Abstracts 543.11. Society for Neuroscience, Washington, DC.

Summary: A subset of hypothalamic arcuate neurons that coexpress kisspeptin, neurokinin B and dynorphin (KNDy neurons) has been postulated to be critical for puberty onset and regulation of luteinizing hormone (LH) secretion. A method for targeted ablation of KNDy neurons was recently developed using the molecular neurotoxin saporin conjugated to the selective NK3R agonist [MePhe7]Neurokinin B (Nk3-SAP). Ovariectomized rats were microinjected bilaterally into the arcuate nucleus with Blank-SAP or Nk3-SAP. One set of rats was transcardiacally perfused 1, 2 or 3 weeks after the injections and immunocytochemistry for kisspeptin was performed in the arcuate nucleus region. The number of KNDy neurons was significantly decreased after 1 week of the toxin injection, however maximal fiber ablation was only achieved 3 weeks after the microinjections. Another group of rats was treated with oil (OVO), estradiol (OVE) or estradiol plus progesterone (OVEP). One week later, rats had their jugular vein cannulated and blood samples were taken at 10am and hourly from 3 until 6pm. Selective ablation of KNDy neurons of OVO rats significantly reduced basal LH levels at all time points studied. Basal LH levels in OVE and OVEP animals did not differ between groups, yet KNDy ablation increased peak LH levels in the afternoon of OVE and OVEP rats. A third group of OVE animals was microinjected with norbinaltorphimine (nor-BNI), a kappa opioid receptor antagonist, directly into the anteroventral periventricular nucleus (AVPV) one hour before the expected LH surge. The blockage of dynorphin receptors intra-AVPV significantly increased the LH surge, similar to the effect of KNDy ablation in OVE rats. Our results suggest that KNDy neurons provide inhibition to AVPV kisspeptin neurons through dynorphin and thus regulate the size of the LH surge induced by estradiol or estradiol plus progesterone.

Related Products: NKB-SAP (Cat. #IT-63)

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