European Journal of Neuroscience

Cover image for Vol. 36 Issue 8

October 2012

Volume 36, Issue 8

Pages 3005–3150


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    1. Synapsin-dependent reserveo pool of synaptic vesicles supports replenishment of the readily releasable pool under intense synaptic transmission (pages 3005–3020)

      Mariya Vasileva, Heinz Horstmann, Constanze Geumann, Daniel Gitler and Thomas Kuner

      Version of Record online: 16 JUL 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2012.08225.x

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      We examined the morphological and functional consequences of deleting all synapsin isoforms at the calyx of Held synapse. Our results suggest that in wild-type synapses, only a small fraction of the synapsin-dependent reserve pool of vesicles enters the readily releasable pool. Synapsins are required for normal synaptic vesicle biogenesis, trafficking and immobilization of synaptic vesicles, yet they are not essential for sustained high-frequency synaptic transmission at the calyx terminal.

    2. Ca2+-dependent ion channels underlying spontaneous activity in insect circadian pacemaker neurons (pages 3021–3029)

      Hongying Wei and Monika Stengl

      Version of Record online: 22 JUL 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2012.08227.x

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      Insect circadian pacemaker neurons express rhythmic action potential activity in the gamma frequency range of 20–70 Hz together with circadian rhythmicity. Employing FURA 2-dependent calcium imaging we characterised ion channels underlying spontaneous activity. We found that mostly mibefradil-sensitive, low-voltage-activated calcium channels, but not slow inactivating sodium pacemaker channels are responsible for the regular spontaneous activity. Now, it can be examined whether gamma-band rhythmic activity is affecting the nuclear circadian clockwork or whether it solely affects clock outputs.


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    1. Octopaminergic modulation of contrast gain adaptation in fly visual motion-sensitive neurons (pages 3030–3039)

      Diana Rien, Roland Kern and Rafael Kurtz

      Version of Record online: 9 JUL 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2012.08216.x

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      Across different animal classes and sensory modalities neuronal processing was shown to depend on the current state of locomotor activity. In insects, state-dependent release of the neuromodulator octopamine was argued to cause up-regulation of stimulus sensitivity and adjustments of neuronal tuning curves. We show that the octopamine agonist chlordimeform (CDM) enhances the responsiveness of visual motion-sensitive neurons in the blowfly by counteracting contrast-gain adaptation.

    2. Distinctive patterns of alterations in proton efflux from goldfish retinal horizontal cells monitored with self-referencing H+-selective electrodes (pages 3040–3050)

      Matthew A. Kreitzer, Jason Jacoby, Ethan Naylor, Adam Baker, Trent Grable, Emma Tran, Sophie Erwin Booth, Haohua Qian and Robert Paul Malchow

      Version of Record online: 19 JUL 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2012.08226.x

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      The H+ hypothesis of lateral feedback inhibition in the outer retina predicts that depolarizing agents should increase H+ release from horizontal cells. To test this hypothesis, self-referencing H+-selective microelectrodes were used to measure extracellular H+ fluxes from isolated goldfish horizontal cells.

    3. Estradiol acts during a post-pubertal sensitive period to shorten free-running circadian period in male Octodon degus (pages 3051–3058)

      Daniel L. Hummer, Elizabeth M. Peckham and Theresa M. Lee

      Version of Record online: 15 JUL 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2012.08228.x

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      The administration of estradiol during a sensitive period of post-pubertal development decreases the free-running circadian period of males but not females, resulting in a permanent sexual dimorphism in the circadian timekeeping mechanism of Octodon degus. These data demonstrate that gonadal hormones can act during adolescent development to permanently alter the circadian system.

    4. The medial amygdaloid nucleus is involved in the cardiovascular pathway activated by noradrenaline into the lateral septal area of rats (pages 3059–3065)

      América A. Scopinho, Eduardo A. T. Fortaleza and Fernando M. A. Corrêa

      Version of Record online: 15 JUL 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2012.08230.x

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      We have previously reported that noradrenaline (NA) microinjected into the lateral septal area (LSA) caused pressor and bradicardic responses that were mediated by vasopressin release into the circulation through the paraventricular nucleus of hypothalamus (PVN). Although PVN is the final structure involved in the cardiovascular responses caused by NA in the LSA, there is no evidence of direct connections between these areas, suggesting that some structures could be links in this pathway.

    5. Transient enhancement of inhibition following visual cortical lesions in the mouse superior colliculus (pages 3066–3076)

      Katsuyuki Kaneda, Yuchio Yanagawa and Tadashi Isa

      Version of Record online: 8 JUL 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2012.08224.x

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      We investigated the changes in local circuit dynamics of the sSC after receiving visual cortical lesions in mice. In vivo unit recordings revealed that about 1 week after the lesions, surround suppression was transiently enhanced. Whole-cell recordings in slice preparations showed that the lesion induced cell type-dependent changes in the excitation-inhibition balance. The results suggest that enhanced synaptic inhibition may be responsible for the enhanced surround suppression in the sSC.

    6. Changes in acetylcholinesterase in experimental autoimmune myasthenia gravis and in response to treatment with a specific antisense (pages 3077–3085)

      Edna Blotnick, Yasmine Hamra-Amitai, Chen Wald, Talma Brenner and Lili Anglister

      Version of Record online: 17 JUL 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2012.08218.x

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      Controlled regulation of synaptic nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (AChRs) and acetylcholinesterase (AChE), together with maintenance of a dynamic balance between them, is a requirement for proper function of cholinergic synapses. In the present study we assessed whether pathological changes in AChR perturb this balance, and whether such changes can be corrected.


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    1. High serum androstenedione levels correlate with impaired memory in the surgically menopausal rat: a replication and new findings (pages 3086–3095)

      Bryan W. Camp, Julia E. Gerson, Candy Wing S. Tsang, Stephanie R. Villa, Jazmin I. Acosta, B. Blair Braden, Ann N. Hoffman, Cheryl D. Conrad and Heather A. Bimonte-Nelson

      Version of Record online: 3 JUL 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2012.08194.x

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      Androstenedione is the primary ovary-derived hormone during menopause. Prior work in rats showed that higher endogenous serum androstenedione levels correlated with poorer memory scores after follicular depletion. The current study tested cognitive effects of androstenedione administration in the middle-aged ovariectomised rat. Androstenedione impaired spatial reference memory, working memory, and memory retention. Results indicate that androstenedione can impact memory in females during middle-age.

    2. Sex differences in fear memory and extinction of mice with forebrain-specific disruption of the mineralocorticoid receptor (pages 3096–3102)

      J. P. ter Horst, A. P. Carobrez, M. H. van der Mark, E. R. de Kloet and M. S. Oitzl

      Version of Record online: 25 JUL 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2012.08237.x

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      Previous studies showed that the mineralocorticoid receptor (MR) is needed for behavioral flexibility in a fear conditioning paradigm. In the present study male and female MR forebrain deficient mice and control littermates were used to study sex-specific fear conditioning, memory performance and extinction.

    3. Stress-induced sensitization to cocaine: actin cytoskeleton remodeling within mesocorticolimbic nuclei (pages 3103–3117)

      Maria A. Esparza, Flavia Bollati, Constanza Garcia-Keller, Miriam B. Virgolini, Lidia M. Lopez, Alicia Brusco, Hao-Wei Shen, Peter W. Kalivas and Liliana M. Cancela

      Version of Record online: 12 AUG 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2012.08239.x

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      This study shows that a history of repeated stress alters the capacity of a subsequent cocaine injection to modulate dendritic spine morphology (size of PSD), actin dynamics and AMPAR expression in the NAc. Furthermore, the alterations in actin dynamics regulate AMPAR surface expression in the NAc after cocaine in the prior repeated stress group, which is a shared molecular mechanism between stress- and drug-induced sensitization to cocaine.

    4. Impact of contextual cues in the expression of the memory associated with diazepam withdrawal: involvement of hippocampal PKMζin vivo, and Arc expression and LTP in vitro (pages 3118–3125)

      Maria C. Monti, Laura A. Gabach, Mariela F. Perez and Oscar A. Ramírez

      Version of Record online: 3 JUL 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2012.08206.x

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      The memory associated with diazepam withdrawal can be affected by changes in the contextual cues presented during withdrawal and by direct interference of hippocampal synaptic plasticity using a PKMζ inhibitor. The context associated to drug experience is relevant for the expression of withdrawal signs and the associated enhanced hippocampal synaptic plasticity. These mechanisms can be used to prevent or treat drug dependence or addiction.

    5. The role of melanin-concentrating hormone in conditioned reward learning (pages 3126–3133)

      Andrew Sherwood, Marlena Wosiski-Kuhn, Truc Nguyen, Peter C. Holland, Bernard Lakaye, Antoine Adamantidis and Alexander W. Johnson

      Version of Record online: 8 JUL 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2012.08207.x

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      The Melanin Concentrating Hormone (MCH) is well-positioned to play a key role in connecting brain reward and homoeostatic systems. Here we investigated in mice whether deletion or pharmacological antagonism of the MCH receptor would disrupt two putative forms of reward-learning: conditioned reinforcement and Pavlovian-instrumental transfer. Our results suggest a role for MCH in guiding behavior based on the conditioned reinforcing value of a cue.

    6. Interaction of NMDA receptors and L-type calcium channels during early odor preference learning in rats (pages 3134–3141)

      David Jerome, Qinlong Hou and Qi Yuan

      Version of Record online: 5 JUL 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2012.08210.x

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      This work characterized the role of olfactory bulb mitral cell L-type calcium channels in early odor preference learning in rats. Previous studies demonstrated that mitral cell NMDA receptors are critical for odor learning induction. Our results show that L-type calcium channels act downstream of NMDA receptors to mediate early odor preference learning. We also investigated the interaction of L-type calcium channels and β-adrenoceptors in the early odor preference learning model.

    7. Ultradian corticosterone secretion is maintained in the absence of circadian cues (pages 3142–3150)

      Eleanor J. Waite, Mervyn McKenna, Yvonne Kershaw, Jamie J. Walker, Kwangwook Cho, Hugh D. Piggins and Stafford L. Lightman

      Version of Record online: 23 JUL 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2012.08213.x

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      Our studies investigate the importance of the SCN in regulating ultradian rhythmicity. Both SCN-lesioning and constant light exposure resulted in a loss of the circadian pattern of corticosterone secretion, whereas the ultradian pulsatile secretion of corticosterone was maintained across the 24 h in all animals. Furthermore, the loss of SCN input revealed an underlying relationship between locomotor and HPA activity.