Abstracts from Society for Neuroscience (SFN) Symposium October 19-23, 2019 – Chicago, IL

19 entries found for : sfn2019

Effects of an orexin-2 receptor agonist on attention in rats following loss of cortical cholinergic projections

Blumenthal SA, Maness EBL, Fadel JR, Burk JA (2019) Effects of an orexin-2 receptor agonist on attention in rats following loss of cortical cholinergic projections. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 418.06. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: Deterioration to the basal forebrain cholinergic system (BFCS) is linked to age-related cognitive impairment, specifically to the pathology of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Animals with BFCS damage perform poorly on learning, memory, and attention tasks, indicating cognitive deficits. The orexin neuropeptide system, comprised of two neuropeptides (orexin A and orexin B), has also been implicated in the cognitive decline associated with aging, likely due to the role of orexins in promoting attention. Two orexin receptor subtypes exist, orexin 1 (Ox1R) and orexin 2 (Ox2R). Studies have examined the effects of stimulation and blockage of both receptors together and Ox1R alone on attention; but no studies have examined the role of Ox2Rs in attention through the use of Ox2R agonists. Ox2Rs may be implicated in attentional processes and the loss of orexin neurons seen in age-related cognitive decline. In order to examine the role of Ox2Rs in attention following BFCS deterioration, the present study administered the Ox2R agonist, YNT-185, to rats given intrabasalis infusions of either saline (n = 12) or 192 IgG saporin (n=11), an immunotoxin which selectively destroys the BFCS. Animals received infusions of YNT-185 to the lateral ventricle (LV) in doses of 0, 1, 10, and 100nM across four separate sessions and performance was then assessed on a sustained attention task requiring discrimination between signal and non-signal trials through lever presses. The 100nM dose of YNT-185 improved attentional performance, as compared to the 0nM dose, for rats given the immunotoxin, but worsened performance for rats given saline lesions. YNT-185 may be efficacious in aiding attentional function in animals with vulnerable cholinergic systems but may lead to overexcitation for those with intact cholinergic function.

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Dissociable attentional effects of dopaminergic and cholinergic lesions to the anterior cingulate cortex

Clement MK, Pimentel CS, Swaine JA, Pimentel AJ, Hutchins D, McGaughy JA (2019) Dissociable attentional effects of dopaminergic and cholinergic lesions to the anterior cingulate cortex. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 418.11. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: Prior work from our lab has shown that excitotoxic lesions to the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) impairs the ability of rats to filter certain types of distracting stimuli (Newman and McGaughy 2011). Specifically, rats with lesions of the ACC cannot filter distractors that have been made salient through pairing with reinforcement. In contrast, these same subjects can filter distracting stimuli that have not been predictive of reward. The present study investigates the effects of neuromodulator specific lesions of the same region to determine how specific neuromodulators contribute to the attentional function of ACC. Cholinergic or dopaminergic deafferentation of the ACC was achieved using either 192 IgG saporin (n=10) or dopamine transporter saporin (n=10). Lesions were restricted to the rostral portion of the area and did not spread to nearby prefrontal sub-regions e.g prelimbic cortex. After lesioning, subjects were tested in an attentional set-shifting task (Birrell and Brown 2000). While both cholinergic and dopaminergic lesions increased distractibility, these deficits were not as severe as those produced after excitotoxic lesions (n= 8). In contrast to excitotoxic lesions, both cholinergic and dopaminergic lesions also impeded formation of an attentional set. Because dopaminergic lesions produced impairments in many stages of the tasks, we hypothesized that these subjects had a more general impairment in stimulus processing. In order to address these broader processing impairments, we analyzed the data to determine whether lesioned rats showed more sensitivity to novel stimuli, or made more perseverative errors. The implications of these data for understanding the unique contributions of acetylcholine and dopamine to attentional processing in the ACC will be discussed.

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Increased transplantation efficacy of mesenchymal stem cell by focused ultrasound and improvement of the spatial memory in the 192 IgG-saporin rat model

Lee J, Seo Y, Shin J, Kong C, Na Y, Chang W, Chang J (2019) Increased transplantation efficacy of mesenchymal stem cell by focused ultrasound and improvement of the spatial memory in the 192 IgG-saporin rat model. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 048.01. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: Introduction: Stem cell therapy has been found to have therapeutic effects in neurodegenerative disease, but traditional transplant methods, such as parenchymal or intravenous injection, possess limitations like secondary injuries, infection, and low survival rate of stem cells in the brain. Meanwhile, recently the focused ultrasound(FUS) was found to have promising results regarding transplantation of stem cells into the rat brain. However, the mechanism of stem cell transplantation with FUS and possibility of cognitive recovery remain elusive. Therefore, this study investigates a possibility for non-invasive focused ultrasound use in stem cell transplantation into the brain of dementia rat model. Materials & methods: We divided rats into five groups: Normal, Lesion, Cell only, FUS + Cell, and FUS only. We used 192 IgG-saporin for degeneration of basal forebrain cholinergic neuron and it was injected into all rats except for the normal group. After a week, 5p mesenchymal stem cells (MSC: 3*106/200ul) were injected in the tail vein of all rats of the cell only and FUS + Cell group, and the FUS + Cell group received the FUS three hours before cell transplantation. FUS was applied with parameters of 0.25Mpa, 300s (Targeted hippocampal region: AP -3.5, ML ±2). And last, FUS only group was received only FUS without any treatment. Five weeks after transplantation, rats performed the Morris water maze test. Results: MSC were detected in both cell only and FUS + Cell group of the hippocampus region. After comparing FUS+MSC & cell only rats, it was confirmed that FUS increases MSC homing in the sonicated rat’s brain. In addition, the most effective memory restoration occurred in the FUS + Cell group. Moreover, the FUS + Cell group exhibited better recall of the platform position than the other groups. And FUS only group did not recover. Conclusion: Noninvasive FUS can increase the efficacy of stem cell delivery. And memory impairment due to cholinergic denervation can be effectively improved by cell transplantation with FUS. The results of this study suggest possibility of stem cell homing and therapeutic effects of the FUS in dementia rat model. However, further study regarding the function of stem cells transplanted in the brain and a more detailed mechanism of stem cell homing by FUS is needed.

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SUVN-G3031, histamine H3 receptor inverse agonist preclinical evaluation for the treatment of excessive daytime sleepiness in narcolepsy

Bhyrapuneni G, Benade V, Daripelli S, Kamuju V, Shinde A, Abraham R, Nirogi R, Jasti V (2019) SUVN-G3031, histamine H3 receptor inverse agonist preclinical evaluation for the treatment of excessive daytime sleepiness in narcolepsy. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 502.07. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: Numerous studies have demonstrated that brain histamine plays a crucial role in maintenance of wakefulness, attention, learning and other cognitive processes. SUVN-G3031, a potent histamine H3 receptor inverse agonist is being developed for the treatment of narcolepsy and other sleep related disorders. SUVN-G3031 is one of the lead molecules with hKi of 8.7 nM and has more than 100 fold selectivity against the related GPCRs. SUVN-G3031 exhibited desired pharmacokinetic properties and brain penetration. SUVN-G3031 blocked R-α-methylhistamine induced water intake and increased tele-methylhistamine levels in brain and cerebrospinal fluid. In the present study, SUVN-G3031 was evaluated in brain microdialysis and rodent models of electroencephalography (EEG). SUVN-G3031 was evaluated in brain microdialysis for evaluation of neurotransmitters like acetylcholine, histamine, dopamine and norepinephrine in male Wistar rats. EEG was used to evaluate the effects on sleep/ wake profile in rats and mice.A single oral administration of SUVN-G3031 produced significant increase in acetylcholine, histamine, dopamine and norepinephrine levels in the cortex. SUVN-G3031 produced no change in the dopamine levels of striatum and nucleus accumbens indicating that SUVN-G3031 may not have addiction liabilities. Narcoleptic-like sleep behavior was observed in rats injected with hypocretin-2-saporin in lateral hypothalamus. SUVN-G3031 produced significant increase in wakefulness with concomitant decrease in rapid eye movement (REM) sleep in these animals. These results are in agreement with EEG studies carried out in healthy male Wistar rats. Results from current studies provide strong evidence for the potential of SUVN-G3031 in the treatment of excessive daytime sleepiness associated with narcolepsy. First in human, Phase 1 studies for SUVN-G3031 are completed under US IND and SUVN-G3031 has shown desirable pharmacokinetic profile with safety and tolerability in healthy human volunteers. Phase 2 study for the treatment of excessive daytime sleepiness associated with narcolepsy is currently ongoing in USA.

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Nociceptors expressing TRPV1 and trigeminal nucleus neurons expressing NK1 mediate orthodontic pain

Wang S, Kim M, Ong K, Pae E-K, Chung M-K (2019) Nociceptors expressing TRPV1 and trigeminal nucleus neurons expressing NK1 mediate orthodontic pain. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 052.10. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: Orthodontic force produces mechanical irritation and inflammation in periodontium, which inevitably accompanies pain. Despite its high prevalence, treatment of orthodontic pain is not effective. Determining detailed neural mechanisms involving peripheral and central nervous system should be critical to improve the management of orthodontic pain. Periodontal ligament is projected by peptidergic nociceptors, which is enriched with transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1), a receptor for capsaicin. Trigeminal subnucleus caudalis (Vc), is critical for relaying orofacial nociceptive signal into brain. A group of second- order neurons in the superficial dorsal horn of Vc express neurokinin 1 receptor (NK1), a receptor for substance P, and receive inputs from peptidergic nociceptors. However, the contribution of these nociceptive neurons to orthodontic pain has not been determined. Orthodontic force of 10g produced reliable tooth movement in mice. Orthodontic pain was evaluated by measuring mouse grimace scale (MGS) and bite force (BF), which could represent spontaneous pain and chewing-evoked pain, respectively. Orthodontic force increased MGS and decreased BF, which peaked at 1d and returned near to sham level at 7d. Using targeted chemical ablation of specific subsets of neurons, we determined the contribution of TRPV1+ nociceptors and NK1+ Vc neurons to orthodontic pain behaviors in mice. Ablation of TRPV1+ nociceptors by injecting resiniferatoxin into trigeminal ganglia significantly attenuated orthodontic force assessed by MGS and BF. Chemical ablation of NK1+ Vc neurons by injecting saporin conjugated with substance P into Vc also significantly reduced the extent of changes in MGS and BF by orthodontic force. These results suggest that TRPV1+ trigeminal nociceptors and NK1+ Vc neurons constitute a major neural pathway for transmission of orthodontic pain, which is a fundamental neural mechanism of orthodontic pain transmission. The new mouse model of orthodontic pain will be useful for mechanistic study to develop novel approaches for painless orthodontics.

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Role of nociceptive afferent input on forelimb reaching and grasping behaviors in the spinal cord injured rat

Walker JR, Ong A, Detloff MR (2019) Role of nociceptive afferent input on forelimb reaching and grasping behaviors in the spinal cord injured rat. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 572.09. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: Individuals with spinal cord injury (SCI) suffer a loss of motor and sensory function. The current standard of care to recover fine motor control is rehabilitation focused on a combination of range of motion, aerobic, and strength training (ST). However, limited research has been conducted to determine the role of nociceptive afferent inputs from muscle on spinal plasticity and/or recovery of function. Using a rodent model of SCI strength training rehabilitation, we determined that motor training not only improves forelimb strength and fine motor function but also can modulate the development of neuropathic pain, suggesting that improvements in reaching and grasping may be due, in part, to plasticity of nociceptive afferents. To further explore this, Sprague-Dawley rats received injections of rIB4-conjugated saporin, mu p75-conjugated saporin or unconjugated (vehicle) into the cervical dorsal root ganglia unilaterally to eliminate non-peptidergic and peptidergic nociceptors. There is an uninjured cohort and a group with unilateral C5 SCI. Von Frey and Hargreaves’ tests were performed at baseline and several time points post-injection to assess the effcacy of the nociceptive elimination. Several measures of forelimb strength were recorded over time including the isometric pull task, a single pellet retrieval task and the Montoya staircase test. To confirm the depletion of peptidergic and non-peptidergic nociceptors following saporin injection and/or SCI, cervical DRGs and spinal cords were stained with antibodies against CGRP and isolectin-B4. An understanding of the role of nociceptors in spinal plasticity and functional motor and sensory recovery of SCI patients will guide future research and refine rehabilitation strategies to further improve their quality of life.

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An acetylcholine-dopamine interaction in the rat nucleus accumbens and its tentative involvement in ethanol’s dopamine-liberating effect

Andrén A, Adermark L, Söderpalm B, Ericson M (2019) An acetylcholine-dopamine interaction in the rat nucleus accumbens and its tentative involvement in ethanol's dopamine-liberating effect. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 079.08. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: Alcohol use disorder is a chronic, relapsing brain disorder associated with serious medical consequences leading to preterm death. Although few in number, cholinergic interneurons (CIN) have arisen as an important cell population within the nucleus accumbens (nAc) that may exert a regulatory impact on dopamine (DA) neurotransmission locally. A defect in CIN have been suggested to be involved in psychiatric diseases such as alcohol addiction. The mechanisms through which endogenous cholinergic activity modulates DA release in response to ethanol administration and its role in development of addiction is not known. In this project, the aim was to study if acetylcholine (ACh) can influence DA release locally in the nAc and if so, through which receptor population(s) this effect is mediated. Further, we wanted to determine the role of ACh in ethanol-induced DA elevation.Using reversed in vivo microdialysis, the acetylcholinesterase inhibitor physostigmine was administered locally in the nAc of male Wistar rats followed by addition of either the muscarinic ACh receptor inhibitor scopolamine or the nicotinergic ACh receptor inhibitor mecamylamine. Subsequently, ethanol was perfused following local pretreatment with scopolamine or mecamylamine, using the same methodology. An immunotoxin, anti-ChAT-saporine, was infused locally into the nAc of a subset of male Wistar rats to selectively lesion CIN, followed by local ethanol administration via reversed in vivo microdialysis. Local administration of physostigmine induced a DA elevation within the nAc, an effect blocked by scopolamine but not by mecamylamine. Local administration of ethanol increased DA levels. Scopolamine pretreatment non-significantly attenuated the ethanol-induced DA elevation, whereas pretreatment with mecamylamine had no effect. Preliminary results indicate a minor attenuation of the DA elevation observed after local administration of ethanol in toxin-treated animals, as compared to sham-treated controls. Taken together, these results suggest that ACh increases extracellular DA levels in nAc in vivo, an effect mediated by muscarinic ACh-receptors and not by nicotinic ACh-receptors. Considering that scopolamine moderately attenuated ethanol-induced DA output and that lesioning of CIN appeared to hamper DA release in response to ethanol, ACh release from CIN within the nAc may be partially involved in ethanol-induced DA release in nAc.

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Leptin receptor activity in the nucleus of the solitary tract increases forebrain leptin sensitivity

Harris RB (2019) Leptin receptor activity in the nucleus of the solitary tract increases forebrain leptin sensitivity. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 591.04. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: We previously reported that fourth ventricle infusions of leptin that cause weight loss are associated with an increase in hypothalamic phosphorylation of signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (pSTAT3), a marker of leptin receptor (ObRb) activation, implying an integrated response to central leptin. This study tested the impact of ObRb activity in the nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS) on sensitivity to leptin in the forebrain. Leptin-Saporin (Lep-Sap) injections were used to delete ObR- expressing neurons in the NTS of 300g male Sprague Dawley rats. Controls were injected with Blank-Saporin (Blk-Sap). Loss of NTS ObR was confirmed with RNAScope in situ hybridization and pSTAT3 response to peripheral leptin in representative Lep- Sap rats. Experimental rats were fitted with 3rd ventricle (3V) guide cannula 12 days after Lep-Sap or Blk-Sap injections. Nine days later cannula placement was tested with Angiotensin II and rats were adapted to calorimeter cages for 4 days. Lep-Sap had no effect on body weight. To test leptin responsiveness rats were food deprived for 5 hours and at 5 p.m. they received 3V injections of 0, 0.05, 0.1, 0.25 or 0.5 μg leptin. Food was returned at 6 p.m., the start of the dark period. Each rat received the injections in random order at 4 day intervals. At the end of the experiment NTS pSTAT3 was used to confirm effcacy of Lep-Sap injections. Seven Lep-Sap and 6 control Blk-Sap rats completed the experiment. There was a dose-dependent inhibition of food intake in Blk-Sap rats, but only 0.5 μg leptin inhibited intake of Lep-Sap rats. Intake was inhibited during the 24 hours following injection and was not compensated for so that cumulative intake was inhibited for 60 hours post-injection. Energy expenditure was not different between groups and respiratory exchange ratio tended to follow food intake. These data suggest that leptin- induced inhibition of food intake is mediated by an integrated network involving both the forebrain and hindbrain and that activation of NTS ObRb lowers the threshold for leptin responsiveness in the forebrain.

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Exercise is neuroprotective following partial motoneuron depletion via androgen action at the target muscle

Chew C, Sengelaub DR (2019) Exercise is neuroprotective following partial motoneuron depletion via androgen action at the target muscle. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 134.13. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: We have previously demonstrated that partial depletion of motoneurons innervating the quadriceps muscles induces dendritic atrophy in remaining motoneurons. Furthermore, systemic treatment with supplemental androgens is neuroprotective, and dendritic atrophy following partial motoneuron depletion is attenuated. Blockade of the androgen receptor at the target muscle prevents the neuroprotective effects on motoneuron dendrites in rats treated with supplemental androgens. We have recently shown that exercise is also neuroprotective on motoneuron dendrites following partial motoneuron depletion, and circulating levels of androgens have previously been shown to increase following exercise. Together, these results suggest that exercise may be neuroprotective via androgen action at the muscle. In the present study, we examine whether blockade of androgen receptors at the target musculature would prevent the neuroprotective effects of exercise on dendrites following partial motoneuron depletion. Motoneurons innervating the vastus medialis muscle in adult male rats were selectively killed by intramuscular injection of cholera toxin-conjugated saporin. Simultaneously, some saporin-injected rats were given implants of the androgen receptor antagonist hydroxyflutamide, either directly at the quadriceps musculature or interscapularly as a systemic control. Following saporin injections, some animals were allowed free access to running wheels attached to their home cages. Four weeks later, motoneurons innervating the ipsilateral vastus lateralis muscle were labeled with cholera toxin-conjugated horseradish peroxidase, and dendritic arbors were reconstructed in three dimensions. Compared with untreated males, partial motoneuron depletion resulted in decreased dendritic length in remaining quadriceps motoneurons. Early data suggests that following partial motoneuron depletion, exercised males with androgen receptor blockade at the quadriceps show dendritic lengths that are significantly shorter than those of exercised males with no treatment, while dendritic lengths in exercised males with interscapular implants do not differ from those of exercised animals without implants. These findings suggest that exercise may be protective against dendritic atrophy via androgens binding at the target musculature.

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Medial septum cholinergic signaling regulates gastrointestinal-derived vagus sensory nerve communication to the hippocampus

Suarez AN, Liu CM, Cortella AM, Noble EN, Kanoski SE (2019) Medial septum cholinergic signaling regulates gastrointestinal-derived vagus sensory nerve communication to the hippocampus. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 601.19. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: The vagus nerve delivers bi-directional communication between feeding-relevant gastrointestinal (GI) signals and the brain. Vagal sensory-mediated GI satiation signals, including gastric distension and intra-gastric nutrient infusion, activate neurons in the hippocampus (HPC). Recent work from our lab revealed that selective GI-derived vagal sensory signaling is required for HPC-dependent episodic and visuospatial memory, effects accompanied by reduced dorsal HPC (dHPC) expression of neurotrophic and neurogenic markers. To investigate the neural pathways mediating gut regulation of hippocampal-dependent memory, here we investigate the hypothesis that GI-derived signals communicate to dHPC neurons via cholinergic input from the medial septum, a memory-promoting pathway that is vulnerable to disruption in various degenerative dementia diseases. To explore this putative gut-to-brain pathway, we administered 192IgG-saporin, a neurotoxin that selectively kills cholinergic neurons via apoptosis, in the medial septum to determine whether septal cholinergic neurons regulate vagally-mediated neuronal activation in dHPC. Results revealed that elimination of cholinergic neurons in the MS reduced peripherally-administered cholecystokinin (CCK)-induced c-Fos expression in the dHPC, suggesting that cholinergic inputs from the MS transmit GI-derived signaling to the dHPC. Consistent with this interpretation, dHPC protein expression of vesicular acetylcholine transporter (VAChT), which promotes memory function and acetylcholine release without disrupting other co- released molecules, was significantly reduced in rats with GI-specific vagal sensory ablation via nodose ganglion injections of CCK conjugated to saporin. Collectively these results suggest that GI-derived vagal sensory signaling infuences memory function via enhancement of MS cholinergic signaling to the dPHC.

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Targeted hippocampal GABA neuron ablation produces hippocampal sclerosis, epilepsy, and dissociable effects on the Morris water maze and object-place paired association tasks

Truckenbrod LM, Bumanglag AV, Chun E, Hernandez A, Federico QP, Maurer AP, Sloviter RS, Burke SN (2019) Targeted hippocampal GABA neuron ablation produces hippocampal sclerosis, epilepsy, and dissociable effects on the Morris water maze and object-place paired association tasks. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 158.03. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: An epileptogenic role for hippocampal GABAergic dysfunction has recently been reported (Chun et al. 2019). Specifically, selective ablation of hippocampal GABA neurons by Stable Substance P-saporin (SSP-saporin) conjugate caused dorsal hippocampal sclerosis and chronic epilepsy, without involving convulsive status epilepticus or widespread brain injury. The current study assessed cognitive function in chronically epileptic SSP-saporin-treated rats and their vehicle-injected controls ~8 months following injection. First, rats completed the Morris Water Maze test of spatial learning and memory (Morris et al., 1982). Animals then underwent testing with the object-place paired association (OPPA) task, which requires the hippocampus as well as functional connectivity between the hippocampus and cortical areas (Jo and Lee, 2010; Hernandez et al., 2017), and then a simple object discrimination task. Interestingly, both controls and rats with dorsal hippocampal sclerosis and chronic epilepsy were able to learn the location of the hidden platform in the Morris Water Maze task and could also acquire a simple pair-wise object discrimination. However, epileptic rats with dorsal hippocampal sclerosis were significantly impaired on the OPPA task, which requires animals to integrate spatial location memory with a correct object choice and is a more sensitive measure of cognitive dysfunction (Hernandez et al., 2015). These data indicate that, similar to humans with medial temporal lobe epilepsy, selective hippocampal sclerosis and epilepsy in this model do not result in global cognitive decline. Rather, cognitive functions that require functional connectivity between the hippocampus and cortical areas are selectively affected.

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In vivo monitoring of cholinergic neurotransmission with a microelectrochemical choline biosensor

Cunningham C, Lowry JP (2019) In vivo monitoring of cholinergic neurotransmission with a microelectrochemical choline biosensor. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 614.03. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: Acetylcholine acts as a key neuromodulator within the central nervous system, capable of altering neuronal excitability and coordinating neuronal firing patterns. Conversely, cholinergic neurotransmission plays a crucial role in a variety of cognitive functions, including the encoding of new memories. Cholinergic neuronal loss, and the resulting drop in cholinergic neurotransmission (collectively referred to as hypocholinergia), is closely associated with cognitive dysfunction in a number of chronic neurodegenerative disorders including Alzheimer's disease. However, conventional analytical techniques for monitoring in vivo cholinergic neurotransmission lack the spatiotemporal resolution required to accurately detect endogenous cholinergic dynamics. Here we validate in mice a Pt-based electrochemical biosensor for selective monitoring of choline, a verified marker of cholinergic transmission. Enzymatic choline biosensors (modified with choline oxidase) were sterotaxically implanted in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) and contralateral dorsal hippocampus (dHPC) of female C57Bl6J mice. Real-time choline current recordings over a period of several days revealed circadian fluctuations in both regions, with extracellular choline levels highest during light phases. Administration of pharmacological compounds known to induce central acetylcholine release, scopolamine (1mg/kg) and amphetamine (4mg/kg), evoked a robust increase in choline current. In contrast, peripheral injection of the reversible acetylcholinesterase inhibitor, donepezil (3mg/kg), produced a marked decrease in recorded choline current. The induction of systemic infammation with bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS; 500µg/kg) produced characteristic ‘sickness behaviour’ in mice and evoked a tonic rise in central choline levels in both the mPFC and dHPC. Furthermore, the induction of hypocholinergia in selected mice was preformed via intracerebroventricular injections of murine-p75-saporin immunotoxin (1.2µg). Evoked cholinergic neurotransmission was dramatically attenuated in lesioned (hypocholinergic) mice. Collectively, the data suggests that microelectrochemical choline biosensors may serve as a powerful tool for monitoring cholinergic neurotransmission across a number of behavioural and disease states.

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Maintenance mechanism of nociplastic pain in males

McDonough KE, Hankerd KM, La J-H, Chung JM (2019) Maintenance mechanism of nociplastic pain in males. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 218.22. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: Recently, the International Association for the Study of Pain defined a third form of pain: nociplastic pain. A key mechanism of nociplastic pain is central sensitization (CS) persistently maintained in the absence of an underlying persistent injury. We developed a novel mouse model of nociplastic pain, which uses hindpaw capsaicin injection as a transient injury, followed by innocuous vibration stimulation, making CS persist beyond the normal resolution time. Our lab has previously shown that the normally resolving transient CS by capsaicin is maintained by ongoing nerve activity at the injury site in female mice. We preliminarily found that the persistent CS in our male nociplastic pain model is maintained by different mechanisms. Based on the literature that spinal microglia and their inflammatory mediators play a key role in other models of chronic pain, specifically in males, we hypothesize that nociplastic pain in males is due to CS maintained by activated microglia and subsequent release of inflammatory mediators such as prostaglandins generated through the cyclooxygenase (COX) pathway. To test this hypothesis, spinal microglia and COX were inhibited by intrathecally injecting the microglia-targeting toxin Mac-1-saporin or the COX inhibitor indomethacin, respectively, following establishment of a nociplastic pain state. Secondary mechanical hypersensitivity, a behavioral biomarker of CS, was mitigated by intrathecal Mac-1-saporin, whereas intrathecal indomethacin had no effect. Our results suggest that spinal microglia maintain persistent CS driving nociplastic pain in males. However, prostaglandins generated through the COX pathway do not seem to be the main inflammatory mediator involved in the maintenance of this CS.

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The role of subcortical hippocampal inputs in contextual memory formation

Grayson VS, Han Y, Guedea AL, Jovasevic V, Gao C, Apkarian A, Radulovic JM (2019) The role of subcortical hippocampal inputs in contextual memory formation. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 786.03. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: The role of cortical efferents to the hippocampus in the formation of episodic-like memory is well established, however, less is known about the contribution of subcortical memory circuits to memory. In the present study, we studied the roles of several subcortical inputs into the dorsal hippocampus in mouse models of contextual fear conditioning, extinction, and reinstatement. Fear conditioning was induced by a single exposure of mice to a context followed by foot shock. Subsequently, mice were exposed to daily extinction trials. After significant reduction of freezing, indicating successful extinction, mice were exposed to a brief reminder shock and re-tested in the conditioning context. Circuit manipulations were performed by chemogenetic silencing with the inhibitory designer receptor exclusively activated by designer drugs (DREADD) hM4(Gi) or targeted cholinergic depletion induced by 192 IgG-saporin, at different stages of fear conditioning, extinction, and reinstatement. We identified projection- and neurotransmitter-specific roles of discrete circuits, indicating complex regulation of fear-inducing memories by subcortical afferents.

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Sign-trackers deploy perceptual, but not cholinergic-attentional, mechanisms to respond to salient cues

Phillips KB, Avila C, Sarter M (2019) Sign-trackers deploy perceptual, but not cholinergic-attentional, mechanisms to respond to salient cues. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 331.10. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: Sign-trackers (STs) attribute incentive value to stimuli that predict food and drug rewards and therefore have emerged as a model for studying vulnerability for addiction-like behaviors. Relative to goal-trackers (GTs), who do not imbue discrete predictive stimuli with motivational value, STs also show a reduced capacity for engaging forebrain cholinergic signaling for the processing of behaviorally significant and attention-demanding cues. The greater power of Pavlovian drug cues in STs has been attributed in part to their relatively poor attentional control of such cues. However, when tested in an operant Sustained Attention Task (SAT), STs exhibit only a minor impairment in hit rates but, more robustly, unstable performance over time. These observations raised the question as to the neuro-behavioral or -cognitive mechanisms via which STs perform the SAT. Male and female STs were trained on SAT. The SAT requires the reporting of cues as well as non-cue events via separate levers, yielding four response categories (hits and misses, and correct rejections and false alarms). After reaching criterion, half of STs received bilateral infusions of the cholino-selective neurotoxin 192-IgG saporin while the remaining STs received sham-lesions. Following recovery, performance was assessed on the SAT and a version of SAT incorporating a flashing house light distractor (dSAT). Goal-directed (or top-down) attention is thought to maintain and recover performance during dSAT and mediated via increases in cortical cholinergic activity. In STs, neither SAT nor dSAT performance depended on the integrity of the cholinergic system. We therefore hypothesized that STs perform the SAT using model-free, non-attentional mechanisms, perhaps relying largely on trial-biased perceptual processes to detect salient cues. To test this hypothesis, separate STs and GTs were trained on SAT. The salience of the cue light relative to the house light was varied across operant chambers. In STs, greater perceptual sensitivity reductions were observed as a function of relatively weaker cue salience. In contrast, GTs’ perceptual sensitivity did not relate to cue salience. Associated with their relatively unresponsive cholinergic system, STs rely on perceptual mechanisms, rather than attentional mechanisms, to perform the SAT. The relative absence of (top-down) attentional control of behaviorally significant cues, combined with a propensity to attribute incentive value to such cues, renders STs less likely to reject such cues from guiding their behavior and engaging in alternative action.

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Selective loss of septohippocampal cholinergic projections is associated with more circuitous homeward progressions

Osterlund JR, BLackwell AA, Lipton M, Castillo V, Kartje GL, Tsai S-Y, Wallace DG (2019) Selective loss of septohippocampal cholinergic projections is associated with more circuitous homeward progressions. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 789.11. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: Rodents rely on self-movement cues as a source of information to maintain spatial orientation during exploration. The vestibular system provides a source of self-movement cues that are processed by the septohippocampal cholinergic system, and when damaged, disruptions in movement organization are observed. The current study examined the effects of medial septum infusion of 192 IgG-saporin on movement organization during a single exploratory session that limited rats to using only self-movement cues. Rats organize their exploratory behavior into stops and progression. Although stops occur throughout the environment, they tend to cluster within a restricted area indicative of home base establishment. In the current study, movement organization characteristics and home base stability were similar between the lesion and sham groups. However, the lesion group exhibited greater path circuity during progressions returning to the home base. Increases in path circuitry have been implicated in spatial disorientation, indicating a role for medial septum cholinergic projections in processing self-movement cues to maintain spatial orientation. These results provide a foundation for future work to investigate the efficacy of interventions that enhance neuroplasticity within the septohippocampal cholinergic system.

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

Effect of medial septal selective and non selective lesions on exploratory behavior and recognition memory

Kruashvili L, Beselia G, Chkhikvishvili N (2019) Effect of medial septal selective and non selective lesions on exploratory behavior and recognition memory. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 336.01. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: Investigation of cholinergic system and memory interaction has especially become the object of scientific attention due to the clinical and experimental data, in which the severity of dementia in Alzheimer's disease (AD) was found to have a positive correlation with the extent of the cholinergic loss. The septum is connected to the hippocampus via the fimbria-fomix, which carries projections from the medial septum (MS), and the vertical limb of the diagonal band of Broca. These projections are predominantly cholinergic and GABAergic. Lesions of the fimbria-fomix, or electrolytic lesions of the MS, impair hippocampal- dependent learning and memory. The purpose of this study was to investigate ability to acquire and use spatial (or non-spatial) information as well as to habituate exploratory activity over time in sham-operated, electrolytic, neuro or immunotoxic MS lesioned rats. Methods: A total of 39 male rats were used. For electrolytic lesions a stainless steel was inserted in the MS. All injections were performed stereotaxically. Rats were individually given five 3-min sessions in the open field. All experiments were approved by the Animal Care and Use Committee of the Center and were in accordance with the principles of laboratory animal care. Results: Examination of the AChE stained sections showed that after injections of 192 IgG saporin into the MS, animals exhibited significantly less AChE staining in MS and hippocampus as compared to sections obtained from control animals. The MS electrolytic and ibotenic acid lesioned rats showed an increase in their exploratory activity to the objects and were impaired in habituating to the objects in the repeated spatial environment, rats with immunolesions of the MS did not differ from control rats. Electrolytic lesions of the MS disrupt spatial recognition memory, rats with immuno- or neurotoxic lesions of the MS were normal in detecting spatial novelty. The MS lesioned and control rats clearly reacted to the object novelty by exploring the new object more than familiar ones. Conclusions: MS is sufficient for spatial recognition, but is not sufficient for object recognition memory, the selective loss of septohippocampal cholinergic or noncholinergic projections does not disrupt the function of the hippocampus to a suffi cient extent to impair spatial recognition memory. Therefore, the present study demonstrates dissociation between the two major components (cholinergic and noncholinergic) of the septohippocampal pathway in exploratory behavior assessed in the open field.

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

A high efficacy selection method for transfected cells utilizing recombinant isolectin B4-saporin

Galvan MA, Shramm PA, Bouajram R, Lappi DA, Ancheta LR (2019) A high efficacy selection method for transfected cells utilizing recombinant isolectin B4-saporin. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 794.10. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: Transfection protocols often rely on the use of antibiotics for the selection of transfected cells and has become the accepted approach for in vitro research and therapeutic applications. Antibiotics have several shortcomings such as cost, continuous use, and harmful effects -- even on the transfected cell population. In addition, selection pressures are often inefficient and fail to provide a population of cells that express the gene of interest (GOI) at high levels. We have used three separate GOI’s to select for solely high-expressing transfectants using targeted toxin selection pressure. Normal Rat Kidney Cells (KNRK) were individually transfected to express green fluorescent protein (GFP), melanopsin or the low-affinity nerve growth factor receptor (p75) using an innovative new transfection delivery vector called pGEI. The results from various assays were utilized to visually determine the expression rate and pattern of the targeted toxin selection method. Melanopsin and p75 -- a photopigment and nerve growth factor, respectively -- were of great interest to express in our transfected cells as a means to study their role in the development and function of neurons. The delivery vector, pGEI, removes resident Galalpha(1-3)Gal epitopes from non- human mammalian cell surfaces. This residue is the target of recombinant Isolectin B4 - Saporin (IB4-SAP), a selective targeted toxin. IB4-SAP is extremely potent, with an EC50 in the low picomolar range for alpha-D-galactopyranoside expressing cells in vitro. The cells with the highest expression of the inserted vector, and therefore the GOI, will have these residues removed. Those that fail to express the vector or do not express the vector in high enough amounts, will not have all the residues removed, and will be targeted and eliminated via IB4-SAP. This method of selection provides a means of purifying the highest- expressing transfected populations using a more cost-effective and time-saving approach.

Related Products: IB4-SAP (Cat. #IT-10)

How to stimulate: Basal forebrain DBS parameters to restore the attentional performance of rats with cholinergic losses

Nazmuddin M, Rao HA, Van Laar T, Sarter MF (2019) How to stimulate: Basal forebrain DBS parameters to restore the attentional performance of rats with cholinergic losses. Neuroscience 2019 Abstracts 377.10. Society for Neuroscience, Chicago, IL.

Summary: The degeneration of basal forebrain (BF) cholinergic neurons is an index of the severity of cognitive impairment in Alzheimer disease (AD) and Parkinson’s disease (PD). Moreover, in PD patients, gait and balancing deficits, and an increased propensity for falls have been attributed to cholinergic losses. Thus, Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) of the BF has been considered a potential therapeutic intervention to improve cognition and movement control in these patients. However, efficacy of BF DBS in clinical populations has yet to be conclusively demonstrated. Likewise, the demonstration of beneficial effects of BF DBS in rodent models has been hampered by uncertainties about useful animal models and behavioral tasks and, importantly, a lack of consensus concerning DBS parameters (duration, frequency, current, intermittent versus continuous, prior and/or during task, etc.). Here we assessed various DBS parameters in rats with a partial loss of the cortical cholinergic input system. In rats, such cholinergic losses have been frequently demonstrated to impair the detection of cues during the performance of a Sustained Attention Task (SAT) and to attenuate performance recovery following a distractor challenge (dSAT). In PD patients with cholinergic losses, attentional impairments were also attributed to cortical and thalamic cholinergic losses (Kim et al., 2017). The attribution of SAT impairments to cholinergic losses is consistent with evidence showing that the detection of cues and associated attentional control parameters depend on cortical cholinergic signaling (e.g., Howe et al., 2017). Here, rats acquired the SAT, received infusions of the cholino-specific neurotoxin 192-IgG-saporin into the BF, and were implanted bilaterally with BF unipolar stimulation electrodes. Initial DBS parameters consisted of continuous high (130 Hz) versus low (20 Hz) frequency stimulation, intermittent (20-s ON at 80 Hz and 40-s OFF) stimulation, with pulse width and amplitude kept constant at 100 µs and 100 µA, respectively. We first assessed the effects of these DBS parameters on the behavior of rats in an open field space and then when administered during, or only prior to (for 1 hr), SAT and dSAT performance. Ongoing experiments indicate that these stimulation parameters are well tolerated as indicated by the absence of effects on locomotor and exploratory activity. We predict that BF DBS will be particularly effective in restoring attentional performance in the dSAT condition. If confirmed, this finding will suggest that demonstration of efficacy in patients will require measures indicating their attentional capacities in response to taxing performance challenges.

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