Up-regulation of the persistent sodium current (INaP) and down-regulation of the potassium/chloride extruder KCC2 lead to spasticity after spinal cord injury (SCI). We here identified calpain as the driver of the up- and down-regulation of INaP and KCC2, respectively, in neonatal rat lumbar motoneurons. Few days after SCI, neonatal rats developed behavioral signs of spasticity with the emergence of both hyperreflexia and abnormal involuntary muscle contractions on hindlimbs. At the same time, in vitro isolated lumbar spinal cords became hyperreflexive and displayed numerous spontaneous motor outputs. Calpain-I expression paralleled with a proteolysis of voltage-gated sodium (Nav) channels and KCC2. Acute inhibition of calpains reduced this proteolysis, restored the motoneuronal expression of Nav and KCC2, normalized INaP and KCC2 function, and curtailed spasticity. In sum, by up- and down-regulating INaP and KCC2, the calpain-mediated proteolysis of Nav and KCC2 drives the hyperexcitability of motoneurons which leads to spasticity after SCI.
All data generated or analysed during this study are included in the manuscript and supporting files. Source data files have been provided for all Figures and Supplementary Figures of the manuscript.
- Frédéric Brocard
- Frédéric Brocard
- Frédéric Brocard
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
Animal experimentation: We made all efforts to minimize animal suffering and the number of animals used. All animal care and use conformed to the French regulations (Décret 2010-118) and were approved by the local ethics committee (Comité d'Ethique en Neurosciences INT-Marseille, CE Nb A1301404, authorization Nb 2018110819197361).
- Jan-Marino Ramirez, Seattle Children's Research Institute, United States
© 2019, Plantier et al.
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
Mathys et al. conducted the first single-nucleus RNA-seq (snRNA-seq) study of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) (Mathys et al., 2019). With bulk RNA-seq, changes in gene expression across cell types can be lost, potentially masking the differentially expressed genes (DEGs) across different cell types. Through the use of single-cell techniques, the authors benefitted from increased resolution with the potential to uncover cell type-specific DEGs in AD for the first time. However, there were limitations in both their data processing and quality control and their differential expression analysis. Here, we correct these issues and use best-practice approaches to snRNA-seq differential expression, resulting in 549 times fewer DEGs at a false discovery rate of 0.05. Thus, this study highlights the impact of quality control and differential analysis methods on the discovery of disease-associated genes and aims to refocus the AD research field away from spuriously identified genes.
The strength of a fear memory significantly influences whether it drives adaptive or maladaptive behavior in the future. Yet, how mild and strong fear memories differ in underlying biology is not well understood. We hypothesized that this distinction may not be exclusively the result of changes within specific brain regions, but rather the outcome of collective changes in connectivity across multiple regions within the neural network. To test this, rats were fear conditioned in protocols of varying intensities to generate mild or strong memories. Neuronal activation driven by recall was measured using c-fos immunohistochemistry in 12 brain regions implicated in fear learning and memory. The interregional coordinated brain activity was computed and graph-based functional networks were generated to compare how mild and strong fear memories differ at the systems level. Our results show that mild fear recall is supported by a well-connected brain network with small-world properties in which the amygdala is well-positioned to be modulated by other regions. In contrast, this connectivity is disrupted in strong fear memories and the amygdala is isolated from other regions. These findings indicate that the neural systems underlying mild and strong fear memories differ, with implications for understanding and treating disorders of fear dysregulation.