European Journal of Neuroscience

Cover image for Vol. 37 Issue 1

January 2013

Volume 37, Issue 1

Pages 1–172


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    1. Constitutive knockout of the membrane cytoskeleton protein beta adducin decreases mushroom spine density in the nucleus accumbens but does not prevent spine remodeling in response to cocaine (pages 1–9)

      Yonwoo Jung, Patrick J. Mulholland, Shari L. Wiseman, L. Judson Chandler and Marina R. Picciotto

      Article first published online: 29 OCT 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/ejn.12037

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      The adducins associate with the actin cytoskeleton and are involved in synaptic plasticity. We show here that β adducin is required for stabilising mature spines under basal conditions in the nucleus accumbens, but that lack of this protein does not prevent synaptic remodeling following repeated cocaine administration. These data are consistent with previous studies suggesting that β adducin may normally be involved in stabilising spines once drug- or experience-dependent remodeling has occurred.

    2. Cells expressing markers of immature neurons in the amygdala of adult humans (pages 10–22)

      Ulisses Martí-Mengual, Emilio Varea, Carlos Crespo, José Miguel Blasco-Ibáñez and Juan Nacher

      Article first published online: 15 OCT 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/ejn.12016

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      Cells expressing doublecortin and PSA-NCAM, but lacking NeuN expression, were present in the amygdala of adult humans, indicating that they were immature neurons. These cells were organised in elongated clusters located between the white matter of the dorsal hippocampus and the basolateral amygdaloid nucleus. These clusters were not associated with astroglial specialised structures. No proliferative cells were observed in the human amygdaloid parenchyma.

    3. Lmx1a is an activator of Rgs4 and Grb10 and is responsible for the correct specification of rostral and medial mdDA neurons (pages 23–32)

      Elisa J. Hoekstra, Lars von Oerthel, Annemarie J. A. van der Linden, Raymond D. Schellevis, Gerard Scheppink, Frank C. P. Holstege, Marian J. Groot-Koerkamp, Lars P. van der Heide and Marten P. Smidt

      Article first published online: 29 OCT 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/ejn.12022

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      Microarray analysis of an LMX1A overexpression cell-system resulted in the identification of novel direct or indirect downstream targets of Lmx1a; Grb10, Rgs4 and Vmat2. Therefore, Lmx1a directs neuronal programming inside and outside mdDA neurons.


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    2. Featured Article
      Neuronal responses to face-like stimuli in the monkey pulvinar (pages 35–51)

      Minh Nui Nguyen, Etsuro Hori, Jumpei Matsumoto, Anh Hai Tran, Taketoshi Ono and Hisao Nishijo

      Article first published online: 4 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/ejn.12020

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      Monkey pulvinar neuronal responses to five categories of visual stimuli (facial photos, line drawings of faces, face-like patterns [three dark blobs on a bright oval], eye-like patterns, and simple geometric patterns) were investigated. Face-like patterns elicited stronger responses with the shortest latencies (50 ms). The findings suggest that the pulvinar nuclei function as the subcortical visual pathway that bypasses the striate cortex, rapidly processing coarse facial information.

    3. The effect of auditory cortex deactivation on stimulus-specific adaptation in the inferior colliculus of the rat (pages 52–62)

      L. A. Anderson and M. S. Malmierca

      Article first published online: 4 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/ejn.12018

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      Stimulus-specific adaption (SSA), where a neuron responds less strongly to standard stimuli than deviant occurs in the inferior colliculus. We cooled the auditory cortex to investigate the contribution of descending cortical pathways on SSA. Changes to SSA sensitivity occurred in 52% of the population and could be in either direction; 48% remained unchanged. Thus, the auditory cortex is not essential for the generation of SSA in the inferior colliculus, but may play a role in its modulation.

    4. Nonassociative plasticity alters competitive interactions among mixture components in early olfactory processing (pages 63–79)

      Fernando F. Locatelli, Patricia C. Fernandez, Francis Villareal, Kerem Muezzinoglu, Ramon Huerta, C. Giovanni Galizia and Brian H. Smith

      Article first published online: 21 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/ejn.12021

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      Unreinforced exposure (top) to an odor causes honey bees to learn about that odor slowly when it is subsequently paired with reinforcement, which is called Latent Inhibition (Chandra et al., 2010). (A) A neural correlate of latent inhibition is found early in olfactory processing in the Antennal Lobes (middle left), where it biases the spatiotemporal response pattern generated by a mixture of the pre-exposed odor and a novel odor to be more like the novel odor. (B) Preexposure also biases perception of the preexposed odor in a mixture (middle right). (C) This early filtering mechanism can be best set up by hebbian synaptic plasticity at specific inhibitory synapses onto projection neurons that respond to the pre-exposed odor (bottom).

    5. Effects of the α2-adrenergic receptor agonist dexmedetomidine on neural, vascular and BOLD fMRI responses in the somatosensory cortex (pages 80–95)

      Mitsuhiro Fukuda, Alberto L. Vazquez, Xiaopeng Zong and Seong-Gi Kim

      Article first published online: 29 OCT 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/ejn.12024

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      This paper describes the effects of dexmedetomidine (DEX) the active ingredient of medetomidine which is the latest popular sedative for functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in rodents on multiple unit activity, local field potential (LFP), cerebral blood flow (CBF), pial vessel diameter (indicative of cerebral blood volume; CBV), and blood-oxygenation-level-dependent (BOLD) fMRI. These measurements were obtained from the rat somatosensory cortex during 10-s forepaw stimulation.

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      Modulation of interhemispheric interactions across symmetric and asymmetric bimanual force regulations (pages 96–104)

      Toshiki Tazoe, Syusaku Sasada, Masanori Sakamoto and Tomoyoshi Komiyama

      Article first published online: 15 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/ejn.12026

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      Single-pulse transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) was given to the primary motor cortex during bimanual force regulation to assess interhemispheric interactions between motor cortices in relation to bimanual coordination. Transcallosal inhibition (TCI) elicited by TMS was modulated according to the coordination manner of left and right hands. Symmetric regulation of bimanual forces showed larger TCI than asymmetric regulation of bimanual forces.

    7. Diet-dependent modulation of hippocampal expression of endocannabinoid signaling-related proteins in cannabinoid antagonist-treated obese rats (pages 105–117)

      Patricia Rivera, María Jesús Luque-Rojas, Antoni Pastor, Eduardo Blanco, Francisco J. Pavón, Antonia Serrano, Ana Crespillo, Margarita Vida, Jesús M. Grondona, Manuel Cifuentes, Francisco J. Bermúdez-Silva, Rafael de la Torre, Fernando Rodríguez de Fonseca and Juan Suárez

      Article first published online: 3 OCT 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/ejn.12012

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      Diet-induced obesity produces changes in endocannabinoid signaling (ECS), influencing the regulation of energy homeostasis. Recently, we demonstrated that in high-fat diet-fed rats, blockade of CB1 receptor by AM251 not only reduced body weight but also increased adult neurogenesis in the hippocampus, suggesting an influence of diet on hippocampal cannabinoid function.

    8. Immunohistological and electrophysiological evidence that N-acetylaspartylglutamate is a co-transmitter at the vertebrate neuromuscular junction (pages 118–129)

      Kathryn K. Walder, Steve B. Ryan, Tomasz Bzdega, Rafal T. Olszewski, Joseph H. Neale and Clark A. Lindgren

      Article first published online: 8 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/ejn.12027

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      We present electrophysiological and immunohistological evidence that NAAG, one of the most abundant peptides in the mammalian CNS, is a co-transmitter at the vertebrate neuromuscular junction (NMJ). We show that all of the components associated with NAAGergic transmission in the CNS are present at the NMJ, including NAAG, its inactivating enzyme, and its receptor (mGluR3). Moreover, nerve stimulation depletes presynaptic NAAG and application of exogenous NAAG depresses evoked ACh release.

    9. Mitogen- and stress-activated protein kinase 1 modulates photic entrainment of the suprachiasmatic circadian clock (pages 130–140)

      Ruifeng Cao, Greg Q. Butcher, Kate Karelina, J. Simon Arthur and Karl Obrietan

      Article first published online: 6 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/ejn.12028

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      Signaling via the ERK/MAPK pathway appears to play a central role in light-evoked circadian clock entrainment; however, the precise downstream mechanisms by which this pathway influences clock timing are not known. Here we show that the downstream ERK effector kinase MSK1 functions as a key signaling intermediate that couples ERK/MAPK signaling to photic resetting of the clock. These effects appear to be mediated in part by the stimulation of CREB, histone phosphorylation and, ultimately, the induction of core clock gene period1.

    10. A dynamic model for eye-position-dependence of spontaneous nystagmus in acute unilateral vestibular deficit (Alexander's Law) (pages 141–149)

      Elham Khojasteh, Christopher J. Bockisch, Dominik Straumann and Stefan C. A. Hegemann

      Article first published online: 29 OCT 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/ejn.12030

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      Spontaneous nystagmus (SN) is a symptom of acute vestibular tone asymmetry. Alexander's Law (AL) states that slow-phase velocity of SN is higher when looking in the direction of fast-phases of nystagmus and lower in the slow-phase direction. Earlier explanations for AL predict that during SN, slow-phase eye velocity is a linear function of eye position, increasing linearly as eye deviates towards the fast-phase direction. Recent observations, however, show that this is often not the case; eye velocity does not vary linearly with eye position. Such new findings necessitate a re-evaluation of our understanding of AL. As AL may be an adaptive response of the vestibular system to peripheral lesions, understanding its mechanism could shed light on early adaptation strategies of the brain. Here, we propose a physiologically plausible mechanism for AL that explains recent experimental data. We use a dynamic control system model to simulate this mechanism and make testable predictions. This mechanism is based on the known effects of unilateral vestibular deficit on the response of the ipsi- and contralesional vestibular nuclei (VN) of the brainstem. This hypothesis is based on the silencing of the majority of ipsilesional VN units, which creates an asymmetry between the responses of the ipsi- and contralesional VN. Unlike former explanations, the new hypothesis does not rely on lesion detection strategies or signals originating in higher brain structures. The proposed model demonstrates possible consequences of acute peripheral deficits for the function of the velocity-to-position neural integrator of the ocular motor system and the vestibulo-ocular reflex.

    11. Cytoarchitectural, behavioural and neurophysiological dysfunctions in the BCNU-treated rat model of cortical dysplasia (pages 150–162)

      Francesca Inverardi, Maia Chikhladze, Andrea Donzelli, Ramona Frida Moroni, Maria Cristina Regondi, Paolo Pennacchio, Ileana Zucca, Irene Corradini, Daniela Braida, Mariaelvina Sala, Silvana Franceschetti and Carolina Frassoni

      Article first published online: 25 OCT 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/ejn.12032

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      Prenatal developmental insults at the peak of cortical neurogenesis induce in adult BCNU-treated rats cortical and hippocampal lesions associated with a severe impairment of spatial working memory. It also induced distortions in the basic mechanisms of plasticity in the hippocampal formation, and signs of hyperexcitability. These results may help to clarify the pathophysiological mechanisms of cognitive dysfunction that is often associated with epilepsy in patients with CD.

    12. A perceptual discrimination task results in greater facilitation of voluntary saccades in Parkinson's disease patients (pages 163–172)

      Saskia van Stockum, Michael R. MacAskill, Daniel Myall and Tim J. Anderson

      Article first published online: 4 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/ejn.12033

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      A saccade task combining voluntary saccades with a perceptual discrimination task was used to investigate oculomotor changes in Parkinson's disease. Exogenous and endogenous effects facilitated saccade initiation more in the PD group than in the control group. The results suggest that both saccade initiation and the maintenance of fixation are impaired in PD.