A synergistic combination of in vitro electrophysiology and multicompartmental modeling of rat CA1 pyramidal neurons identified TRPM4 channels as major drivers of cholinergic modulation of the firing rate during a triangular current ramp, which emulates the bump in synaptic input received while traversing the place field. In control, fewer spikes at lower frequencies are elicited on the down-ramp compared to the up-ramp due to long-term inactivation of the NaV channel. The cholinergic agonist carbachol (CCh) removes or even reverses this spike rate adaptation, causing more spikes to be elicited on the down-ramp than the up-ramp. CCh application during Schaffer collateral stimulation designed to simulate a ramp produces similar shifts in the center of mass of firing to later in the ramp. The non-specific TRP antagonist flufenamic acid and the TRPM4-specific blockers CBA and 9-phenanthrol, but not the TRPC-specific antagonist SKF96365, reverse the effect of CCh; this implicates the Ca2+-activated nonspecific cation current, ICAN, carried by TRPM4 channels. The cholinergic shift of the center of mass of firing is prevented by strong intracellular Ca2+ buffering but not by antagonists for IP3 and ryanodine receptors, ruling out a role for known mechanisms of release from intracellular Ca2+ stores. Pharmacology combined with modeling suggest that [Ca2+] in a nanodomain near the TRPM4 channel is elevated through an unknown source that requires both muscarinic receptor activation and depolarization-induced Ca2+ influx during the ramp. Activation of the regenerative inward TRPM4 current in the model qualitatively replicates and provides putative underlying mechanisms for the experimental observations.
All data generated during this study are included in the manuscript; Source Data files have been provided for all experimental figures (1,2,3,4,5,6,10)Model code is freely available and can be downloaded from ModelDB at: http://modeldb.yale.edu/267599,access code: cholinergicshift.
- Carmen C Canavier
- Sonia Gasparini
- Carmen C Canavier
- Sonia Gasparini
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
Animal experimentation: All the procedures described below were conducted according to protocols developed by following guidelines on the responsible use of laboratory animals in research from the National Institutes of Health and approved by the Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center-New Orleans Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC, protocol numbers 3583 and 3851).Rats were deeply anesthetized via intraperitoneal injection of ketamine and xylazine (90 and 10 mg/kg, respectively), until the disappearance of the toe-pinch and palpebral reflexes.
- Jun Ding, Stanford University, United States
© 2023, Combe 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.
Perceptual decisions about sensory input are influenced by fluctuations in ongoing neural activity, most prominently driven by attention and neuromodulator systems. It is currently unknown if neuromodulator activity and attention differentially modulate perceptual decision-making and/or whether neuromodulatory systems in fact control attentional processes. To investigate the effects of two distinct neuromodulatory systems and spatial attention on perceptual decisions, we pharmacologically elevated cholinergic (through donepezil) and catecholaminergic (through atomoxetine) levels in humans performing a visuo-spatial attention task, while we measured electroencephalography (EEG). Both attention and catecholaminergic enhancement improved decision-making at the behavioral and algorithmic level, as reflected in increased perceptual sensitivity and the modulation of the drift rate parameter derived from drift diffusion modeling. Univariate analyses of EEG data time-locked to the attentional cue, the target stimulus, and the motor response further revealed that attention and catecholaminergic enhancement both modulated pre-stimulus cortical excitability, cue- and stimulus-evoked sensory activity, as well as parietal evidence accumulation signals. Interestingly, we observed both similar, unique, and interactive effects of attention and catecholaminergic neuromodulation on these behavioral, algorithmic, and neural markers of the decision-making process. Thereby, this study reveals an intricate relationship between attentional and catecholaminergic systems and advances our understanding about how these systems jointly shape various stages of perceptual decision-making.
The relationship between obesity and human brain structure is incompletely understood. Using diffusion-weighted MRI from ∼30,000 UK Biobank participants, we test the hypothesis that obesity (waist-to-hip ratio, WHR) is associated with regional differences in two micro-structural MRI metrics: isotropic volume fraction (ISOVF), an index of free water, and intra-cellular volume fraction (ICVF), an index of neurite density. We observed significant associations with obesity in two coupled but distinct brain systems: a prefrontal/temporal/striatal system associated with ISOVF and a medial temporal/occipital/striatal system associated with ICVF. The ISOVF~WHR system colocated with expression of genes enriched for innate immune functions, decreased glial density, and high mu opioid (MOR) and other neurotransmitter receptor density. Conversely, the ICVF~WHR system co-located with expression of genes enriched for G-protein coupled receptors and decreased density of MOR and other receptors. To test whether these distinct brain phenotypes might differ in terms of their underlying shared genetics or relationship to maps of the inflammatory marker C-reactive Protein (CRP), we estimated the genetic correlations between WHR and ISOVF (rg = 0.026, P = 0.36) and ICVF (rg = 0.112, P < 9×10−4) as well as comparing correlations between WHR maps and equivalent CRP maps for ISOVF and ICVF (P<0.05). These correlational results are consistent with a two-way mechanistic model whereby genetically determined differences in neurite density in the medial temporal system may contribute to obesity, whereas water content in the prefrontal system could reflect a consequence of obesity mediated by innate immune system activation.