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Sample records for afferent sensory neurons

  1. Local opioid-sensitive afferent sensory neurones in the modulation of gastric damage induced by Paf.

    PubMed Central

    Esplugues, J. V.; Whittle, B. J.; Moncada, S.

    1989-01-01

    1. The role of local sensory neurones in modulating the extent of gastric mucosal damage induced by close-arterial infusion of platelet-activating factor (Paf 50 ng kg-1 min-1 for 10 min) has been investigated in the anaesthetized rat. 2. Local intra-arterial infusion of the neurotoxin, tetrodotoxin (TTX), substantially augmented the mucosal damage induced by Paf, as assessed by both macroscopic and histological techniques. 3. In rats pretreated with capsaicin 2 weeks prior to study, to induce a functional ablation of primary afferent neurones, gastric damage induced by Paf was significantly augmented. 4. Administration of morphine (0.75-3 mg kg-1 i.v.) or its peripherally acting quaternary analogue, N-methyl morphine (15 mg kg-1 i.v.), also significantly enhanced the gastric damage induced by Paf. 5. The potentiation by morphine of Paf-induced gastric damage was inhibited by administration of the opioid antagonists, naloxone (1 mg kg-1 i.v.) or the peripherally acting N-methyl nalorphine (3 mg kg-1 i.v.). 6. Administration of TTX or morphine alone, or pretreatment with capsaicin did not induce any detectable mucosal damage, suggesting that interference with local sensory neuronal activity itself does not directly induce mucosal disruption. 7. These results indicate that peripheral opiate-sensitive afferent sensory neurones play a physiological defensive role in the mucosa, attenuating the extent of gastric damage induced by Paf. PMID:2758231

  2. Prostaglandin potentiates 5-HT responses in stomach and ileum innervating visceral afferent sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sojin; Jin, Zhenhua; Lee, Goeun; Park, Yong Seek; Park, Cheung-Seog; Jin, Young-Ho

    2015-01-02

    Gastrointestinal disorder is a common symptom induced by diverse pathophysiological conditions that include food tolerance, chemotherapy, and irradiation for therapy. Prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) level increase was often reported during gastrointestinal disorder and prostaglandin synthetase inhibitors has been used for ameliorate the symptoms. Exogenous administration of PGE2 induces gastrointestinal disorder, however, the mechanism of action is not known. Therefore, we tested PGE2 effect on visceral afferent sensory neurons of the rat. Interestingly, PGE2 itself did not evoked any response but enhanced serotonin (5-HT)-evoked currents up to 167% of the control level. The augmented 5-HT responses were completely inhibited by a 5-HT type 3 receptor antagonist, ondansetron. The PGE2-induced potentiation were blocked by a selective E-prostanoid type 4 (EP4) receptors antagonist, L-161,982, but type 1 and 2 receptor antagonist AH6809 has no effect. A membrane permeable protein kinase A (PKA) inhibitor, KT5720 also inhibited PGE2 effects. PGE2 induced 5-HT current augmentation was observed on 15% and 21% of the stomach and ileum projecting neurons, respectively. Current results suggest a synergistic signaling in visceral afferent neurons underlying gastrointestinal disorder involving PGE2 potentiation of 5-HT currents. Our findings may open a possibility for screen a new type drugs with lower side effects than currently using steroidal prostaglandin synthetase inhibitors by selectively targeting EP4 receptor/PKA pathway without interrupt prostaglandin synthesis.

  3. Prostaglandin potentiates 5-HT responses in stomach and ileum innervating visceral afferent sensory neurons

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, Sojin; Jin, Zhenhua; Lee, Goeun; Park, Yong Seek; Park, Cheung-Seog; Jin, Young-Ho

    2015-01-02

    Highlights: • Prostaglandin E2 (PGE{sub 2}) effect was tested on visceral afferent neurons. • PGE{sub 2} did not evoke response but potentiated serotonin (5-HT) currents up to 167%. • PGE{sub 2}-induced potentiation was blocked by E-prostanoid type 4 receptors antagonist. • PGE{sub 2} effect on 5-HT response was also blocked by protein kinase A inhibitor KT5720. • Thus, PGE{sub 2} modulate visceral afferent neurons via synergistic signaling with 5-HT. - Abstract: Gastrointestinal disorder is a common symptom induced by diverse pathophysiological conditions that include food tolerance, chemotherapy, and irradiation for therapy. Prostaglandin E{sub 2} (PGE{sub 2}) level increase was often reported during gastrointestinal disorder and prostaglandin synthetase inhibitors has been used for ameliorate the symptoms. Exogenous administration of PGE{sub 2} induces gastrointestinal disorder, however, the mechanism of action is not known. Therefore, we tested PGE{sub 2} effect on visceral afferent sensory neurons of the rat. Interestingly, PGE{sub 2} itself did not evoked any response but enhanced serotonin (5-HT)-evoked currents up to 167% of the control level. The augmented 5-HT responses were completely inhibited by a 5-HT type 3 receptor antagonist, ondansetron. The PGE{sub 2}-induced potentiation were blocked by a selective E-prostanoid type4 (EP{sub 4}) receptors antagonist, L-161,982, but type1 and 2 receptor antagonist AH6809 has no effect. A membrane permeable protein kinase A (PKA) inhibitor, KT5720 also inhibited PGE{sub 2} effects. PGE{sub 2} induced 5-HT current augmentation was observed on 15% and 21% of the stomach and ileum projecting neurons, respectively. Current results suggest a synergistic signaling in visceral afferent neurons underlying gastrointestinal disorder involving PGE{sub 2} potentiation of 5-HT currents. Our findings may open a possibility for screen a new type drugs with lower side effects than currently using steroidal prostaglandin

  4. Allergen challenge sensitizes TRPA1 in vagal sensory neurons and afferent C-fiber subtypes in guinea pig esophagus.

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhenyu; Hu, Youtian; Yu, Xiaoyun; Xi, Jiefeng; Fan, Xiaoming; Tse, Chung-Ming; Myers, Allen C; Pasricha, Pankaj J; Li, Xingde; Yu, Shaoyong

    2015-03-15

    Transient receptor potential A1 (TRPA1) is a newly defined cationic ion channel, which selectively expresses in primary sensory afferent nerve, and is essential in mediating inflammatory nociception. Our previous study demonstrated that TRPA1 plays an important role in tissue mast cell activation-induced increase in the excitability of esophageal vagal nodose C fibers. The present study aims to determine whether prolonged antigen exposure in vivo sensitizes TRPA1 in a guinea pig model of eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE). Antigen challenge-induced responses in esophageal mucosa were first assessed by histological stains and Ussing chamber studies. TRPA1 function in vagal sensory neurons was then studied by calcium imaging and by whole cell patch-clamp recordings in 1,1'-dioctadecyl-3,3,3',3'-tetramethylindocarbocyanine perchlorate (DiI)-labeled esophageal vagal nodose and jugular neurons. Extracellular single-unit recordings were performed in vagal nodose and jugular C-fiber neuron subtypes using ex vivo esophageal-vagal preparations with intact nerve endings in the esophagus. Antigen challenge significantly increased infiltrations of eosinophils and mast cells in the esophagus. TRPA1 agonist allyl isothiocyanate (AITC)-induced calcium influx in nodose and jugular neurons was significantly increased, and current densities in esophageal DiI-labeled nodose and jugular neurons were also significantly increased in antigen-challenged animals. Prolonged antigen challenge decreased esophageal epithelial barrier resistance, which allowed intraesophageal-infused AITC-activating nodose and jugular C fibers at their nerve endings. Collectively, these results demonstrated that prolonged antigen challenge sensitized TRPA1 in esophageal sensory neurons and afferent C fibers. This novel finding will help us to better understand the molecular mechanism underlying esophageal sensory and motor dysfunctions in EoE.

  5. Allergen challenge sensitizes TRPA1 in vagal sensory neurons and afferent C-fiber subtypes in guinea pig esophagus

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Zhenyu; Hu, Youtian; Yu, Xiaoyun; Xi, Jiefeng; Fan, Xiaoming; Tse, Chung-Ming; Myers, Allen C.; Pasricha, Pankaj J.; Li, Xingde

    2015-01-01

    Transient receptor potential A1 (TRPA1) is a newly defined cationic ion channel, which selectively expresses in primary sensory afferent nerve, and is essential in mediating inflammatory nociception. Our previous study demonstrated that TRPA1 plays an important role in tissue mast cell activation-induced increase in the excitability of esophageal vagal nodose C fibers. The present study aims to determine whether prolonged antigen exposure in vivo sensitizes TRPA1 in a guinea pig model of eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE). Antigen challenge-induced responses in esophageal mucosa were first assessed by histological stains and Ussing chamber studies. TRPA1 function in vagal sensory neurons was then studied by calcium imaging and by whole cell patch-clamp recordings in 1,1′-dioctadecyl-3,3,3′,3′-tetramethylindocarbocyanine perchlorate (DiI)-labeled esophageal vagal nodose and jugular neurons. Extracellular single-unit recordings were performed in vagal nodose and jugular C-fiber neuron subtypes using ex vivo esophageal-vagal preparations with intact nerve endings in the esophagus. Antigen challenge significantly increased infiltrations of eosinophils and mast cells in the esophagus. TRPA1 agonist allyl isothiocyanate (AITC)-induced calcium influx in nodose and jugular neurons was significantly increased, and current densities in esophageal DiI-labeled nodose and jugular neurons were also significantly increased in antigen-challenged animals. Prolonged antigen challenge decreased esophageal epithelial barrier resistance, which allowed intraesophageal-infused AITC-activating nodose and jugular C fibers at their nerve endings. Collectively, these results demonstrated that prolonged antigen challenge sensitized TRPA1 in esophageal sensory neurons and afferent C fibers. This novel finding will help us to better understand the molecular mechanism underlying esophageal sensory and motor dysfunctions in EoE. PMID:25591867

  6. Development of inner ear afferent connections: forming primary neurons and connecting them to the developing sensory epithelia

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fritzsch, Bernd

    2003-01-01

    The molecular and cellular origin of the primary neurons of the inner ear, the vestibular and spiral neurons, is reviewed including how they connect to the specific sensory epithelia and what the molecular nature of their survival is. Primary neurons of the ear depend on a single basic Helix-Loop-Helix (bHLH) protein for their formation, neurogenin 1 (ngn1). An immediate downstream gene is the bHLH gene neuronal differentiation (NeuroD). Targeted null mutations of ngn1 results in absence of primary neuron formation; targeted null mutation of NeuroD results in loss of almost all spiral and many vestibular neurons. NeuroD and a later expressed gene, Brn3a, play a role in pathfinding to and within sensory epithelia. The molecular nature of this pathfinding property is unknown. Reduction of hair cells in ngn1 null mutations suggests a clonal relationship with primary neurons. This relationship may play some role in specifying the identity of hair cells and the primary neurons that connect with them. Primary neuron neurites growth to sensory epithelia is initially independent of trophic factors released from developing sensory epithelia, but becomes rapidly dependent on those factors. Null mutations of specific neurotrophic factors lose distinct primary neuron populations which undergo rapid embryonic cell death.

  7. An ionic current model for neurons in the rat medial nucleus tractus solitarii receiving sensory afferent input.

    PubMed Central

    Schild, J H; Khushalani, S; Clark, J W; Andresen, M C; Kunze, D L; Yang, M

    1993-01-01

    1. Neurons from a horizontal slice of adult rat brainstem were examined using intracellular recording techniques. Investigations were restricted to a region within the nucleus tractus solitarii, medial to the solitary tract and centred on the obex (mNTS). Previous work has shown this restricted area of the NTS to contain the greatest concentration of aortic afferent baroreceptor terminal fields. Electrical stimulation of the tract elicited short-latency excitatory postsynaptic potentials in all neurons. 2. mNTS neurons were spontaneously active with firing frequencies ranging between 1 and 10 Hz, at resting potentials of -65 to -45 mV. These neurons did not exhibit spontaneous bursting activity. 3. Depolarizing current injection immediately evoked a finite, high-frequency spike discharge which rapidly declined to a lower steady-state level (i.e. spike frequency adaptation, SFA). Increasing depolarizations produced a marked increase in the peak instantaneous frequency but a much smaller increase in the steady-state firing level. 4. Conditioning with a hyperpolarizing prepulse resulted in a prolonged delay of up to 600 ms before the first action potential (i.e. delayed excitation, DE) with an attendant decrease in peak discharge rates. DE was modulated by both the magnitude and duration of the prestimulus hyperpolarization, as well as the magnitude of the depolarizing stimulus. Tetrodotoxin (TTX) eliminated spike discharge but had little effect on the ramp-like membrane depolarization characteristic of DE. 5. We have developed a mathematical model for mNTS neurons to facilitate our understanding of the interplay between the underlying ionic currents. It consists of a comprehensive membrane model of the Hodgkin-Huxley type coupled with a fluid compartment model describing cytoplasmic [Ca2+]i homeostasis. 6. The model suggests that (a) SFA is caused by an increase in [Ca2+]i which activates the outward K+ current, IK,Ca, and (b) DE results from the competitive

  8. Electrophysiological property and chemical sensitivity of primary afferent neurons that innervate rat whisker hair follicles

    PubMed Central

    Ikeda, Ryo

    2016-01-01

    Whisker hair follicles are sensory organs that sense touch and perform tactile discrimination in animals, and they are sites where sensory impulses are initiated when whisker hairs touch an object. The sensory signals are then conveyed by whisker afferent fibers to the brain for sensory perception. Electrophysiological property and chemical sensitivity of whisker afferent fibers, important factors affecting whisker sensory processing, are largely not known. In the present study, we performed patch-clamp recordings from pre-identified whisker afferent neurons in whole-mount trigeminal ganglion preparations and characterized their electrophysiological property and sensitivity to ATP, serotonin and glutamate. Of 97 whisker afferent neurons examined, 67% of them are found to be large-sized (diameter ≥45 µm) cells and 33% of them are medium- to small-sized (diameter <45 µm) cells. Almost every large-sized whisker afferent neuron fires a single action potential but many (40%) small/medium-sized whisker afferent neurons fire multiple action potentials in response to prolonged stepwise depolarization. Other electrophysiological properties including resting membrane potential, action potential threshold, and membrane input resistance are also significantly different between large-sized and small/medium-sized whisker afferent neurons. Most large-sized and many small/medium-sized whisker afferent neurons are sensitive to ATP and/or serotonin, and ATP and/or serotonin could evoke strong inward currents in these cells. In contrast, few whisker afferent neurons are sensitive to glutamate. Our results raise a possibility that ATP and/or serotonin may be chemical messengers involving sensory signaling for different types of rat whisker afferent fibers. PMID:27927797

  9. Knockdown of sodium channel NaV1.6 blocks mechanical pain and abnormal bursting activity of afferent neurons in inflamed sensory ganglia.

    PubMed

    Xie, Wenrui; Strong, Judith A; Ye, Ling; Mao, Ju-Xian; Zhang, Jun-Ming

    2013-08-01

    Inflammatory processes in the sensory ganglia contribute to many forms of chronic pain. We previously showed that local inflammation of the lumbar sensory ganglia rapidly leads to prolonged mechanical pain behaviors and high levels of spontaneous bursting activity in myelinated cells. Abnormal spontaneous activity of sensory neurons occurs early in many preclinical pain models and initiates many other pathological changes, but its molecular basis is not well understood. The sodium channel isoform NaV1.6 can underlie repetitive firing and excitatory persistent and resurgent currents. We used in vivo knockdown of this channel via local injection of siRNA to examine its role in chronic pain after local inflammation of the rat lumbar sensory ganglia. In normal dorsal root ganglion (DRG), quantitative polymerase chain reaction showed that cells capable of firing repetitively had significantly higher relative expression of NaV1.6. In inflamed DRG, spontaneously active bursting cells expressed high levels of NaV1.6 immunoreactivity. In vivo knockdown of NaV1.6 locally in the lumbar DRG at the time of DRG inflammation completely blocked development of pain behaviors and abnormal spontaneous activity, while having only minor effects on unmyelinated C cells. Current research on isoform-specific sodium channel blockers for chronic pain is largely focused on NaV1.8 because it is present primarily in unmyelinated C fiber nociceptors, or on NaV1.7 because lack of this channel causes congenital indifference to pain. However, the results suggest that NaV1.6 may be a useful therapeutic target for chronic pain and that some pain conditions may be mediated primarily by myelinated A fiber sensory neurons.

  10. N-acetylcysteine alters apoptotic gene expression in axotomised primary sensory afferent subpopulations.

    PubMed

    Reid, Adam J; Shawcross, Susan G; Hamilton, Alex E; Wiberg, Mikael; Terenghi, Giorgio

    2009-10-01

    Novel approaches are required in peripheral nerve injury management because current surgical techniques, which do not address axotomy-induced neuronal death, lead to deficient sensory recovery. Sensory neuronal death has functional preference with cutaneous neurons dying in great numbers whilst muscle afferents survive axotomy. This offers the potential of comparing similar cell types that suffer distinct fates upon nerve injury. Here, a novel approach, combining in vivo rat nerve injury model with laser microdissection and quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction, identifies crucial disparities in apoptotic gene expression attributable to subpopulations of differing sensory modalities and examines the response to N-acetylcysteine (NAC) therapy. We show that axotomised muscle afferent neurons survive injury due to a neuroprotective response which markedly downregulates Bax and caspase-3 mRNA. In contrast, axotomised cutaneous sensory neurons significantly upregulate caspase-3 and alter both Bcl-2 and Bax expression such that pro-apoptotic Bax predominates. N-Acetylcysteine (NAC) intervention promotes neuroprotection of cutaneous sensory neurons through considerable upregulation of Bcl-2 and downregulation of both Bax and caspase-3 mRNA. The data presented identifies differential activation of apoptotic genes in axotomised neuronal subpopulations. Furthermore, NAC therapy instigates apoptotic gene expression changes in axotomised neurons, thereby offering pharmacotherapeutic potential in the clinical treatment of nerve injury.

  11. Dynamic GABAergic afferent modulation of AgRP neurons

    PubMed Central

    Garfield, Alastair S; Shah, Bhavik P; Burgess, Christian R; Li, Monica M; Li, Chia; Steger, Jennifer S; Madara, Joseph C; Campbell, John N; Kroeger, Daniel; Scammell, Thomas E; Tannous, Bakhos A; Myers, Martin G; Andermann, Mark L; Krashes, Michael J; Lowell, Bradford B

    2017-01-01

    Agouti-related peptide (AgRP) neurons of the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus (ARC) promote homeostatic feeding at times of caloric insufficiency, yet they are rapidly suppressed by food-related sensory cues prior to ingestion. Here we identify a highly selective inhibitory afferent to AgRP neurons that serves as a neural determinant of this rapid modulation. Specifically, GABAergic projections arising from the ventral compartment of the dorsomedial nucleus of the hypothalamus (vDMH) contribute to the pre-consummatory modulation of ARCAgRP neurons. In a manner reciprocal to ARCAgRP neurons, ARC-projecting leptin receptor (LepR)-expressing GABAergic DMH neurons exhibit rapid activation upon availability of food that additionally reflects the relative value of the food. Thus, DMHLepR neurons form part of the sensory network that relays real-time information about the nature and availability of food to dynamically modulate ARCAgRP neuron activity and feeding behavior. PMID:27643429

  12. Visceral perception: sensory transduction in visceral afferents and nutrients.

    PubMed

    Raybould, H E

    2002-07-01

    The possible mechanisms that may be involved in nutrient detection in the wall of the gastrointestinal tract are reviewed. There is strong functional and electrophysiological evidence that both intrinsic and extrinsic primary afferent neurones mediate mechano- and chemosensitive responses in the gastrointestinal tract. This review focuses on the extrinsic afferent pathways as these are the ones that convey information to the central nervous system which is clearly necessary for perception to occur.

  13. FMRFamide-related peptide expression in the vestibular-afferent neurons.

    PubMed

    Mercado, Francisco; López, Iván; Ortega, Aida; Almanza, Angélica; Soto, Enrique; Vega, Rosario

    2012-03-28

    Vestibular-afferent neurons innervate hair cells from the sensory epithelia of vestibular end-organs and their action-potential discharge dynamics are driven by linear and angular accelerations of the head. The electrical activity of the vestibular-afferent neurons depends on their intrinsic properties and on the synaptic input from hair cells and from the terminals of the efferent system. Here we report that vestibular-afferent neurons of the rat are immunoreactive to RFamide-related peptides, and that the stronger signal comes from calyx-shaped neuron dendrites, with no signal detected in hair cells or supporting cells. The whole-cell voltage clamp recording of isolated afferent neurons showed that they express robust acid-sensing ionic currents (ASICs). Extracellular multiunit recordings of the vestibular nerve in a preparation in vitro of the rat inner ear showed that the perfusion of FMRFamide (a snail ortholog of this family of neuropeptides) exerts an excitatory effect on the afferent-neurons spike-discharge rate. Because the FMRFamide cannot activate the ASIC but reduces its desensitization generating a more robust current, its effect indicates that the ASIC are tonically active in the vestibular-afferent neurons and modulated by RFamide-like peptides.

  14. Breadth of tuning in taste afferent neurons varies with stimulus strength.

    PubMed

    Wu, An; Dvoryanchikov, Gennady; Pereira, Elizabeth; Chaudhari, Nirupa; Roper, Stephen D

    2015-09-16

    Gustatory stimuli are detected by taste buds and transmitted to the hindbrain via sensory afferent neurons. Whether each taste quality (sweet, bitter and so on) is encoded by separate neurons ('labelled lines') remains controversial. We used mice expressing GCaMP3 in geniculate ganglion sensory neurons to investigate taste-evoked activity. Using confocal calcium imaging, we recorded responses to oral stimulation with prototypic taste stimuli. Up to 69% of neurons respond to multiple tastants. Moreover, neurons tuned to a single taste quality at low concentration become more broadly tuned when stimuli are presented at higher concentration. Responses to sucrose and monosodium glutamate are most related. Although mice prefer dilute NaCl solutions and avoid concentrated NaCl, we found no evidence for two separate populations of sensory neurons that encode this distinction. Altogether, our data suggest that taste is encoded by activity in patterns of peripheral sensory neurons and challenge the notion of strict labelled line coding.

  15. Identifying local and descending inputs for primary sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Yi; Zhao, Shengli; Rodriguez, Erica; Takatoh, Jun; Han, Bao-Xia; Zhou, Xiang; Wang, Fan

    2015-01-01

    Primary pain and touch sensory neurons not only detect internal and external sensory stimuli, but also receive inputs from other neurons. However, the neuronal derived inputs for primary neurons have not been systematically identified. Using a monosynaptic rabies viruses–based transneuronal tracing method combined with sensory-specific Cre-drivers, we found that sensory neurons receive intraganglion, intraspinal, and supraspinal inputs, the latter of which are mainly derived from the rostroventral medulla (RVM). The viral-traced central neurons were largely inhibitory but also consisted of some glutamatergic neurons in the spinal cord and serotonergic neurons in the RVM. The majority of RVM-derived descending inputs were dual GABAergic and enkephalinergic (opioidergic). These inputs projected through the dorsolateral funiculus and primarily innervated layers I, II, and V of the dorsal horn, where pain-sensory afferents terminate. Silencing or activation of the dual GABA/enkephalinergic RVM neurons in adult animals substantially increased or decreased behavioral sensitivity, respectively, to heat and mechanical stimuli. These results are consistent with the fact that both GABA and enkephalin can exert presynaptic inhibition of the sensory afferents. Taken together, this work provides a systematic view of and a set of tools for examining peri- and extrasynaptic regulations of pain-afferent transmission. PMID:26426077

  16. Sensory neuron regulation of gastrointestinal inflammation and bacterial host defence.

    PubMed

    Lai, N Y; Mills, K; Chiu, I M

    2017-02-02

    Sensory neurons in the gastrointestinal tract have multifaceted roles in maintaining homeostasis, detecting danger and initiating protective responses. The gastrointestinal tract is innervated by three types of sensory neurons: dorsal root ganglia, nodose/jugular ganglia and intrinsic primary afferent neurons. Here, we examine how these distinct sensory neurons and their signal transducers participate in regulating gastrointestinal inflammation and host defence. Sensory neurons are equipped with molecular sensors that enable neuronal detection of diverse environmental signals including thermal and mechanical stimuli, inflammatory mediators and tissue damage. Emerging evidence shows that sensory neurons participate in host-microbe interactions. Sensory neurons are able to detect pathogenic and commensal bacteria through specific metabolites, cell-wall components, and toxins. Here, we review recent work on the mechanisms of bacterial detection by distinct subtypes of gut-innervating sensory neurons. Upon activation, sensory neurons communicate to the immune system to modulate tissue inflammation through antidromic signalling and efferent neural circuits. We discuss how this neuro-immune regulation is orchestrated through transient receptor potential ion channels and sensory neuropeptides including substance P, calcitonin gene-related peptide, vasoactive intestinal peptide and pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating polypeptide. Recent studies also highlight a role for sensory neurons in regulating host defence against enteric bacterial pathogens including Salmonella typhimurium, Citrobacter rodentium and enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli. Understanding how sensory neurons respond to gastrointestinal flora and communicate with immune cells to regulate host defence enhances our knowledge of host physiology and may form the basis for new approaches to treat gastrointestinal diseases.

  17. Functional expression of α7-nicotinic acetylcholine receptors by muscle afferent neurons

    PubMed Central

    Baxter, James C.; Ramachandra, Renuka; Mayne, Dustin R.

    2014-01-01

    The exercise pressor reflex (EPR) is generated by group III and IV muscle afferents during exercise to increase cardiovascular function. Muscle contraction is triggered by ACh, which is metabolized into choline that could serve as a signal of exercise-induced activity. We demonstrate that ACh can induce current in muscle afferents neurons isolated from male Sprague-Dawley rats. The nicotinic ACh receptors (nAChRs) appear to be expressed by some group III-IV neurons since capsaicin (TRPV1) and/or ATP (P2X) induced current in 56% of ACh-responsive neurons. α7- And α4β2-nAChRs have been shown to be expressed in sensory neurons. An α7-nAChR antibody stained 83% of muscle afferent neurons. Functional expression was demonstrated by using the specific α7-nAChR blockers α-conotoxin ImI (IMI) and methyllycaconitine (MLA). MLA inhibited ACh responses in 100% of muscle afferent neurons, whereas IMI inhibited ACh responses in 54% of neurons. Dihydro-β-erythroidine, an α4β2-nAChR blocker, inhibited ACh responses in 50% of muscle afferent neurons, but recovery from block was not observed. Choline, an α7-nAChR agonist, elicited a response in 60% of ACh-responsive neurons. Finally, we demonstrated the expression of α7-nAChR by peripherin labeled (group IV) afferent fibers within gastrocnemius muscles. Some of these α7-nAChR-positive fibers were also positive for P2X3 receptors. Thus choline could serve as an activator of the EPR by opening α7-nAChR expressed by group IV (and possible group III) afferents. nAChRs could become pharmacological targets for suppressing the excessive EPR activation in patients with peripheral vascular disease. PMID:24966300

  18. Integration of sensory quanta in cuneate nucleus neurons in vivo.

    PubMed

    Bengtsson, Fredrik; Brasselet, Romain; Johansson, Roland S; Arleo, Angelo; Jörntell, Henrik

    2013-01-01

    Discriminative touch relies on afferent information carried to the central nervous system by action potentials (spikes) in ensembles of primary afferents bundled in peripheral nerves. These sensory quanta are first processed by the cuneate nucleus before the afferent information is transmitted to brain networks serving specific perceptual and sensorimotor functions. Here we report data on the integration of primary afferent synaptic inputs obtained with in vivo whole cell patch clamp recordings from the neurons of this nucleus. We find that the synaptic integration in individual cuneate neurons is dominated by 4-8 primary afferent inputs with large synaptic weights. In a simulation we show that the arrangement with a low number of primary afferent inputs can maximize transfer over the cuneate nucleus of information encoded in the spatiotemporal patterns of spikes generated when a human fingertip contact objects. Hence, the observed distributions of synaptic weights support high fidelity transfer of signals from ensembles of tactile afferents. Various anatomical estimates suggest that a cuneate neuron may receive hundreds of primary afferents rather than 4-8. Therefore, we discuss the possibility that adaptation of synaptic weight distribution, possibly involving silent synapses, may function to maximize information transfer in somatosensory pathways.

  19. Transcriptional changes in sensory ganglia associated with primary afferent axon collateral sprouting in spared dermatome model

    PubMed Central

    Harrison, Benjamin J.; Venkat, Gayathri; Hutson, Thomas; Rau, Kristofer K.; Bunge, Mary Bartlett; Mendell, Lorne M.; Gage, Fred H.; Johnson, Richard D.; Hill, Caitlin; Rouchka, Eric C.; Moon, Lawrence; Petruska, Jeffrey C.

    2015-01-01

    Primary afferent collateral sprouting is a process whereby non-injured primary afferent neurons respond to some stimulus and extend new branches from existing axons. Neurons of both the central and peripheral nervous systems undergo this process, which contributes to both adaptive and maladaptive plasticity (e.g., [1], [2], [3], [4], [5], [6], [7], [8], [9]). In the model used here (the “spared dermatome” model), the intact sensory neurons respond to the denervation of adjacent areas of skin by sprouting new axon branches into that adjacent denervated territory. Investigations of gene expression changes associated with collateral sprouting can provide a better understanding of the molecular mechanisms controlling this process. Consequently, it can be used to develop treatments to promote functional recovery for spinal cord injury and other similar conditions. This report includes raw gene expression data files from microarray experiments in order to study the gene regulation in spared sensory ganglia in the initiation (7 days) and maintenance (14 days) phases of the spared dermatome model relative to intact (“naïve”) sensory ganglia. Data has been deposited into GEO (GSE72551). PMID:26697387

  20. Electrophysiological and pharmacological validation of vagal afferent fiber type of neurons enzymatically isolated from rat nodose ganglia

    PubMed Central

    Li, Bai-Yan; Schild, John H

    2007-01-01

    An unavoidable consequence of enzymatic dispersion of sensory neurons from intact ganglia is loss of the axon and thus the ability to classify afferent fiber type based upon conduction velocity (CV). An intact rat nodose ganglion preparation was used to randomly sample neurons (n = 76) using the patch clamp technique. Reliable electrophysiological and chemophysiological correlates of afferent fiber type were established for use with isolated neuron preparations. Myelinated afferents (~25%) formed two groups exhibiting strikingly different functional profiles. One group (n = 10) exhibited CVs in excess of 10 m/s and narrow (< 1 ms) action potentials (APs) while the other (n = 9) had CVs as low as 4 m/s and broad (> 2 ms) APs that closely approximated those identified as unmyelinated afferents (n = 57) with CVs less than 1 m/s. A cluster analysis of select measures from the AP waveforms strongly correlated with CV, producing three statistically unique populations (p < 0.05). These groupings aligned with our earlier hypothesis (Jin et al., 2004) that a differential sensitivity to the selective purinergic and vanilloid receptor agonists can be used as reliable pharmacological indicators of vagal afferent fiber type. These metrics were further validated using an even larger population of isolated (n = 240) nodose neurons. Collectively, these indicators of afferent fiber type can be used to provide valuable insight concerning the relavence of isolated cellular observations to integrated afferent function of visceral organ systems. PMID:17512602

  1. Spatiotemporal processing of linear acceleration: primary afferent and central vestibular neuron responses

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Angelaki, D. E.; Dickman, J. D.

    2000-01-01

    Spatiotemporal convergence and two-dimensional (2-D) neural tuning have been proposed as a major neural mechanism in the signal processing of linear acceleration. To examine this hypothesis, we studied the firing properties of primary otolith afferents and central otolith neurons that respond exclusively to horizontal linear accelerations of the head (0.16-10 Hz) in alert rhesus monkeys. Unlike primary afferents, the majority of central otolith neurons exhibited 2-D spatial tuning to linear acceleration. As a result, central otolith dynamics vary as a function of movement direction. During movement along the maximum sensitivity direction, the dynamics of all central otolith neurons differed significantly from those observed for the primary afferent population. Specifically at low frequencies (neurons peaked in phase with linear velocity, in contrast to primary afferents that peaked in phase with linear acceleration. At least three different groups of central response dynamics were described according to the properties observed for motion along the maximum sensitivity direction. "High-pass" neurons exhibited increasing gains and phase values as a function of frequency. "Flat" neurons were characterized by relatively flat gains and constant phase lags (approximately 20-55 degrees ). A few neurons ("low-pass") were characterized by decreasing gain and phase as a function of frequency. The response dynamics of central otolith neurons suggest that the approximately 90 degrees phase lags observed at low frequencies are not the result of a neural integration but rather the effect of nonminimum phase behavior, which could arise at least partly through spatiotemporal convergence. Neither afferent nor central otolith neurons discriminated between gravitational and inertial components of linear acceleration. Thus response sensitivity was indistinguishable during 0.5-Hz pitch oscillations and fore-aft movements

  2. Modulation of synaptic transmission from segmental afferents by spontaneous activity of dorsal horn spinal neurones in the cat.

    PubMed

    Manjarrez, E; Rojas-Piloni, J G; Jimenez, I; Rudomin, P

    2000-12-01

    We examined, in the anaesthetised cat, the influence of the neuronal ensembles producing spontaneous negative cord dorsum potentials (nCDPs) on segmental pathways mediating primary afferent depolarisation (PAD) of cutaneous and group I muscle afferents and on Ia monosynaptic activation of spinal motoneurones. The intraspinal distribution of the field potentials associated with the spontaneous nCDPs indicated that the neuronal ensembles involved in the generation of these potentials were located in the dorsal horn of lumbar segments, in the same region of termination of low-threshold cutaneous afferents. During the occurrence of spontaneous nCDPs, transmission from low-threshold cutaneous afferents to second order neurones in laminae III-VI, as well as transmission along pathways mediating PAD of cutaneous and Ib afferents, was facilitated. PAD of Ia afferents was instead inhibited. Monosynaptic reflexes of flexors and extensors were facilitated during the spontaneous nCDPs. The magnitude of the facilitation was proportional to the amplitude of the 'conditioning' spontaneous nCDPs. This led to a high positive correlation between amplitude fluctuations of spontaneous nCDPs and fluctuations of monosynaptic reflexes. Stimulation of low-threshold cutaneous afferents transiently reduced the probability of occurrence of spontaneous nCDPs as well as the fluctuations of monosynaptic reflexes. It is concluded that the spontaneous nCDPs were produced by the activation of a population of dorsal horn neurones that shared the same functional pathways and involved the same set of neurones as those responding monosynaptically to stimulation of large cutaneous afferents. The spontaneous activity of these neurones was probably the main cause of the fluctuations of the monosynaptic reflexes observed under anaesthesia and could provide a dynamic linkage between segmental sensory and motor pathways.

  3. Modulation of synaptic transmission from segmental afferents by spontaneous activity of dorsal horn spinal neurones in the cat

    PubMed Central

    Manjarrez, E; Rojas-Piloni, J G; Jiménez, I; Rudomin, P

    2000-01-01

    We examined, in the anaesthetised cat, the influence of the neuronal ensembles producing spontaneous negative cord dorsum potentials (nCDPs) on segmental pathways mediating primary afferent depolarisation (PAD) of cutaneous and group I muscle afferents and on Ia monosynaptic activation of spinal motoneurones. The intraspinal distribution of the field potentials associated with the spontaneous nCDPs indicated that the neuronal ensembles involved in the generation of these potentials were located in the dorsal horn of lumbar segments, in the same region of termination of low-threshold cutaneous afferents. During the occurrence of spontaneous nCDPs, transmission from low-threshold cutaneous afferents to second order neurones in laminae III-VI, as well as transmission along pathways mediating PAD of cutaneous and Ib afferents, was facilitated. PAD of Ia afferents was instead inhibited. Monosynaptic reflexes of flexors and extensors were facilitated during the spontaneous nCDPs. The magnitude of the facilitation was proportional to the amplitude of the ‘conditioning’ spontaneous nCDPs. This led to a high positive correlation between amplitude fluctuations of spontaneous nCDPs and fluctuations of monosynaptic reflexes. Stimulation of low-threshold cutaneous afferents transiently reduced the probability of occurrence of spontaneous nCDPs as well as the fluctuations of monosynaptic reflexes. It is concluded that the spontaneous nCDPs were produced by the activation of a population of dorsal horn neurones that shared the same functional pathways and involved the same set of neurones as those responding monosynaptically to stimulation of large cutaneous afferents. The spontaneous activity of these neurones was probably the main cause of the fluctuations of the monosynaptic reflexes observed under anaesthesia and could provide a dynamic linkage between segmental sensory and motor pathways. PMID:11101653

  4. Activation of afferent renal nerves modulates RVLM-projecting PVN neurons.

    PubMed

    Xu, Bo; Zheng, Hong; Liu, Xuefei; Patel, Kaushik P

    2015-05-01

    Renal denervation for the treatment of hypertension has proven to be successful; however, the underlying mechanism/s are not entirely clear. To determine if preautonomic neurons in the paraventricular nucleus (PVN) respond to afferent renal nerve (ARN) stimulation, extracellular single-unit recording was used to investigate the contribution of the rostral ventrolateral medulla (RVLM)-projecting PVN (PVN-RVLM) neurons to the response elicited during stimulation of ARN. In 109 spontaneously active neurons recorded in the PVN of anesthetized rats, 25 units were antidromically activated from the RVLM. Among these PVN-RVLM neurons, 84% (21/25) were activated by ARN stimulation. The baseline discharge rate was significantly higher in these neurons than those PVN-RVLM neurons not activated by ARN stimulation (16%, 4/25). The responsiveness of these neurons to baroreflex activation induced by phenylephrine and activation of cardiac sympathetic afferent reflex (CSAR) was also examined. Almost all of the PVN neurons that responded to ARN stimulation were sensitive to baroreflex (95%) and CSAR (100%). The discharge characteristics for nonevoked neurons (not activated by RVLM antidromic stimulation) showed that 23% of these PVN neurons responded to ARN stimulation. All the PVN neurons that responded to ARN stimulation were activated by N-methyl-D-aspartate, and these responses were attenuated by the glutamate receptor blocker AP5. These experiments demonstrated that sensory information originating in the kidney is integrated at the level of preautonomic neurons within the PVN, providing a novel mechanistic insight for use of renal denervation in the modulation of sympathetic outflow in disease states such as hypertension and heart failure.

  5. Impact of the Sensory Neurons on Melanoma Growth In Vivo

    PubMed Central

    Tapias, Victor; Watkins, Simon C.; Ma, Yang; Shurin, Michael R.; Shurin, Galina V.

    2016-01-01

    Nerve endings are often identified within solid tumors, but their impact on the tumor growth and progression remains poorly understood. Emerging data suggests that the central nervous system may affect cancer development and spreading via the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and autonomous nervous system. However, the role of the afferent sensory neurons in tumor growth is unclear, except some reports on perineural invasion in prostate and pancreatic cancer and cancer-related pain syndrome. Here, we provide the results of primary testing of the concept that the interaction between melanoma cells and sensory neurons may induce the formation of tumor-supporting microenvironment via attraction of immune regulatory cells by the tumor-activated dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons. We report that despite DRG cells not directly up-regulating proliferation of melanoma cells in vitro, presence of DRG neurons allows tumors to grow significantly faster in vivo. This effect has been associated with increased production of chemokines by tumor-activated DRG neurons and attraction of myeloid-derived suppressor cells both in vitro and in vivo. These initial proof-of-concept results justify further investigations of the sensory (afferent) nervous system in the context of tumorigenesis and the local protumorigenic immunoenvironment. PMID:27227315

  6. Type II spiral ganglion afferent neurons drive medial olivocochlear reflex suppression of the cochlear amplifier

    PubMed Central

    Froud, Kristina E.; Wong, Ann Chi Yan; Cederholm, Jennie M. E.; Klugmann, Matthias; Sandow, Shaun L.; Julien, Jean-Pierre; Ryan, Allen F.; Housley, Gary D.

    2015-01-01

    The dynamic adjustment of hearing sensitivity and frequency selectivity is mediated by the medial olivocochlear efferent reflex, which suppresses the gain of the ‘cochlear amplifier' in each ear. Such efferent feedback is important for promoting discrimination of sounds in background noise, sound localization and protecting the cochleae from acoustic overstimulation. However, the sensory driver for the olivocochlear reflex is unknown. Here, we resolve this longstanding question using a mouse model null for the gene encoding the type III intermediate filament peripherin (Prph). Prph(−/−) mice lacked type II spiral ganglion neuron innervation of the outer hair cells, whereas innervation of the inner hair cells by type I spiral ganglion neurons was normal. Compared with Prph(+/+) controls, both contralateral and ipsilateral olivocochlear efferent-mediated suppression of the cochlear amplifier were absent in Prph(−/−) mice, demonstrating that outer hair cells and their type II afferents constitute the sensory drive for the olivocochlear efferent reflex. PMID:25965946

  7. B1 bradykinin receptors and sensory neurones.

    PubMed Central

    Davis, C. L.; Naeem, S.; Phagoo, S. B.; Campbell, E. A.; Urban, L.; Burgess, G. M.

    1996-01-01

    1. The location of the B1 bradykinin receptors involved in inflammatory hyperalgesia was investigated. 2. No specific binding of the B1 bradykinin receptor ligand [3H]-des-Arg10-kallidin was detected in primary cultures of rat dorsal root ganglion neurones, even after treatment with interleukin-1 beta (100 iu ml-1). 3. In dorsal root ganglion neurones, activation of B2 bradykinin receptors stimulated polyphosphoinositidase C. In contrast, B1 bradykinin receptor agonists (des-Arg9-bradykinin up to 10 microM and des-Arg10-kallidin up to 1 microM) failed to activate polyphosphoinositidase C, even in neurones that had been treated with interleukin-1 beta (100 iu ml-1), prostaglandin E2 (1 microM) or prostaglandin I2 (1 microM). 4. Dorsal root ganglion neurones removed from rats (both neonatal and 14 days old) that had been pretreated with inflammatory mediators (Freund's complete adjuvant, or carrageenan) failed to respond to B1 bradykinin receptor selective agonists (des-Arg9-bradykinin up to 10 microM and des-Arg10-kallidin up to 1 microM). 5. Bradykinin (25 nM to 300 nM) evoked ventral root responses when applied to peripheral receptive fields or central terminals of primary afferents in the neonatal rat spinal cord and tail preparation. In contrast, des-Arg9-bradykinin (50 nM to 500 nM) failed to evoke ventral root depolarizations in either control rats or in animals that developed inflammation following ultraviolet irradiation of the tail skin. 6. The results of the present study imply that the B1 bradykinin receptors that contribute to hypersensitivity in models of persistent inflammatory hyperalgesia are located on cells other than sensory neurones where they may be responsible for releasing mediators that sensitize or activate the nociceptors. PMID:8832074

  8. State-space receptive fields of semicircular canal afferent neurons in the bullfrog

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Paulin, M. G.; Hoffman, L. F.

    2001-01-01

    Receptive fields are commonly used to describe spatial characteristics of sensory neuron responses. They can be extended to characterize temporal or dynamical aspects by mapping neural responses in dynamical state spaces. The state-space receptive field of a neuron is the probability distribution of the dynamical state of the stimulus-generating system conditioned upon the occurrence of a spike. We have computed state-space receptive fields for semicircular canal afferent neurons in the bullfrog (Rana catesbeiana). We recorded spike times during broad-band Gaussian noise rotational velocity stimuli, computed the frequency distribution of head states at spike times, and normalized these to obtain conditional pdfs for the state. These state-space receptive fields quantify what the brain can deduce about the dynamical state of the head when a single spike arrives from the periphery. c2001 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Nonlinear high-order mode locking in stochastic sensory neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rowe, Michael; Afghan, Muhammad; Neiman, Alexander

    2004-03-01

    Excitable systems demonstrate various mode locking regimes when driven by periodic external signals. With noise taken into account, such regimes represent complex nonlinear responses which depend crucially on the frequency and amplitude of the periodic drive as well as on the noise intensity. We study this using a computational model of a stochastic Hodgkin-Huxley neuron in combination with the turtle vestibular sensory system as an experimental model. A bifurcation analysis of the model is performed. Extracellular recordings from primary vestibular afferent neurons with two types of stimuli are used in the experimental study. First, mechanical stimuli applied to the labyrinth allow us to study the responses of the entire system, including transduction by the hair cells and spike generation in the primary afferents. Second, a galvanic stimuli applied directly to an afferent are used to study the responses of afferent spike generator directly. The responses to galvanic stimuli reveal multiple high-order mode locking regimes which are well reproduced in numerical simulation. Responses to mechanical stimulation are characterized by larger variability so that fewer mode-locking regimes can be observed.

  10. Relationship between electrophysiological signature and defined sensory modality of trigeminal ganglion neurons in vivo.

    PubMed

    Boada, M Danilo

    2013-02-01

    The trigeminal ganglia (TG) innervate a heterogeneous set of highly sensitive and exposed tissues. Weak, innocuous stimuli can evoke pain as a normal response in some areas such as the cornea. This observation implies, however, the capability of low-threshold mechanoreceptors, inducing pain in the normal condition. To clarify this matter, the present study correlates the electrical signature (both fiber conduction velocity and somatic electrical properties) with receptor field, mechanical threshold, and temperature responsiveness of sensory afferents innervating tissues with dissimilar sensitivity (skin vs. cornea) in the trigeminal domain. Intracellular recordings were obtained in vivo from 148 neurons of the left TG of 62 mice. In 111 of these neurons, the peripheral receptor field was successfully localized: 96 of them innervated the hairy skin, while the remaining 15 innervated the cornea. The electrical signature was defined and peripheral responses correlated with tissue target. No high threshold neurons were found in the cornea. Moreover, the electrical signature of corneal afferents resembles nociceptive neurons in the skin. TG skin afferents showed similar membrane electrical signature and sensory modality as skin afferents from dorsal root ganglion, although TG afferents exhibited a shorter duration of afterhyperpolarization then those previously described in dorsal root ganglion. These data suggest than new or different ways to classify and study TG sensory neurons may be required.

  11. Characteristics of rostral solitary tract nucleus neurons with identified afferent connections that project to the parabrachial nucleus in rats.

    PubMed

    Suwabe, Takeshi; Bradley, Robert M

    2009-07-01

    Afferent information derived from oral chemoreceptors is transmitted to second-order neurons in the rostral solitary tract nucleus (rNST) and then relayed to other CNS locations responsible for complex sensory and motor behaviors. Here we investigate the characteristics of rNST neurons sending information rostrally to the parabrachial nucleus (PBN). Afferent connections to these rNST-PBN projection neurons were identified by anterograde labeling of the chorda tympani (CT), glossopharyngeal (IX), and lingual (LV) nerves. We used voltage- and current-clamp recordings in brain slices to characterize the expression of both the transient A-type potassium current, IKA and the hyperpolarization-activated inward current, Ih, important determinants of neuronal repetitive discharge characteristics. The majority of rNST-PBN neurons express IKA, and these IKA-expressing neurons predominate in CT and IX terminal fields but were expressed in approximately half of the neurons in the LV field. rNST-PBN neurons expressing Ih were evenly distributed among CT, IX and LV terminal fields. However, expression patterns of IKA and Ih differed among CT, IX, and LV fields. IKA-expressing neurons frequently coexpress Ih in CT and IX terminal fields, whereas neurons in LV terminal field often express only Ih. After GABAA receptor block all rNST-PBN neurons responded to afferent stimulation with all-or-none excitatory synaptic responses. rNST-PBN neurons had either multipolar or elongate morphologies and were distributed throughout the rNST, but multipolar neurons were more often encountered in CT and IX terminal fields. No correlation was found between the biophysical and morphological characteristics of the rNST-PBN projection neurons in each terminal field.

  12. Maternal care effects on SNB motoneuron development: the mediating role of sensory afferent distribution and activity.

    PubMed

    Lenz, Kathryn M; Sengelaub, Dale R

    2009-08-01

    Maternal licking in rats affects the development of the spinal nucleus of the bulbocavernosus (SNB), a sexually dimorphic motor nucleus that controls penile reflexes involved with copulation. Reduced maternal licking produces decreased motoneuron number, size, and dendritic length in the rostral portion of the adult SNB as well as deficits in adult male copulatory behavior. Previous research suggests that decreases in perineal tactile stimulation may be responsible for these effects. To determine whether the regional effects of maternal licking on SNB morphology are driven by sensory afferent innervation of the lumbosacral spinal cord, we used WGA-HRP to reconstruct the location of sensory afferent fibers from the perineal skin. We found that these fibers are caudally concentrated relative to the area of the SNB dendritic field, with the rostral dendritic arbor receiving little perineal afferent innervation. We also assessed Fos expression following perineal tactile stimulation to determine whether it increased local spinal cord activity in the SNB dendritic field. Sixty seconds of licking-like perineal stimulation produced a transient 115% increase in Fos expression in the area of the SNB dendritic field. This effect was driven by a significant increase in Fos in the caudal portion of the SNB dendritic field, matching the pattern of perineal afferent fiber labeling. Perineal tactile stimulation also produced significantly greater Fos expression in male pups than in female pups. Together, these results suggest that perineal sensory afferent activity mediates the effects of early maternal care on the masculinization of the SNB and resultant male copulatory behavior.

  13. Transgene expression and effective gene silencing in vagal afferent neurons in vivo using recombinant adeno-associated virus vectors

    PubMed Central

    Kollarik, M; Carr, M J; Ru, F; Ring, C J A; Hart, V J; Murdock, P; Myers, A C; Muroi, Y; Undem, B J

    2010-01-01

    Vagal afferent fibres innervating thoracic structures such as the respiratory tract and oesophagus are diverse, comprising several subtypes of functionally distinct C-fibres and A-fibres. Both morphological and functional studies of these nerve subtypes would be advanced by selective, effective and long-term transduction of vagal afferent neurons with viral vectors. Here we addressed the hypothesis that vagal sensory neurons can be transduced with adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors in vivo, in a manner that would be useful for morphological assessment of nerve terminals, using enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP), as well as for the selective knock-down of specific genes of interest in a tissue-selective manner. We found that a direct microinjection of AAV vectors into the vagal nodose ganglia in vivo leads to selective, effective and long-lasting transduction of the vast majority of primary sensory vagal neurons without transduction of parasympathetic efferent neurons. The transduction of vagal neurons by pseudoserotype AAV2/8 vectors in vivo is sufficiently efficient such that it can be used to functionally silence TRPV1 gene expression using short hairpin RNA (shRNA). The eGFP encoded by AAV vectors is robustly transported to both the central and peripheral terminals of transduced vagal afferent neurons allowing for bright imaging of the nerve endings in living tissues and suitable for structure–function studies of vagal afferent nerve endings. Finally, the AAV2/8 vectors are efficiently taken up by the vagal nerve terminals in the visceral tissue and retrogradely transported to the cell body, allowing for tissue-specific transduction. PMID:20736420

  14. Control of hair cell excitability by vestibular primary sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Brugeaud, Aurore; Travo, Cécile; Demêmes, Danielle; Lenoir, Marc; Llorens, Jordi; Puel, Jean-Luc; Chabbert, Christian

    2007-01-01

    In the rat utricle, synaptic contacts between hair cells and the nerve fibers arising from the vestibular primary neurons form during the first week after birth. During that period, the sodium-based excitability that characterizes neonate utricle sensory cells is switched off. To investigate whether the establishment of synaptic contacts was responsible for the modulation of the hair cell excitability, we used an organotypic culture of rat utricle in which the setting of synapses was prevented. Under this condition, the voltage-gated sodium current and the underlying action potentials persisted in a large proportion of non-afferented hair cells. We then studied whether impairment of nerve terminals in utricle of adult rats may also affect hair cell excitability. We induced selective and transient damages of afferent terminals using glutamate excitotoxicity in vivo. The efficiency of the excitotoxic injury was attested by selective swellings of the terminals and underlying altered vestibular behavior. Under this condition, the sodium-based excitability transiently recovered in hair cells. These results indicate that the modulation of hair cells excitability depends on the state of the afferent terminals. In adult utricle hair cells this property may be essential to set the conditions required for restoration of the sensory network after damage. This is achieved via re-expression of a biological process that occurs during synaptogenesis. PMID:17392466

  15. Deletion of leptin signaling in vagal afferent neurons results in hyperphagia and obesity.

    PubMed

    de Lartigue, Guillaume; Ronveaux, Charlotte C; Raybould, Helen E

    2014-09-01

    The vagal afferent pathway senses hormones released from the gut in response to nutritional cues and relays these signals to the brain. We tested the hypothesis that leptin resistance in vagal afferent neurons (VAN) is responsible for the onset of hyperphagia by developing a novel conditional knockout mouse to delete leptin receptor selectively in sensory neurons (Nav1.8/LepR (fl/fl) mice). Chow fed Nav1.8/LepR (fl/fl) mice weighed significantly more and had increased adiposity compared with wildtype mice. Cumulative food intake, meal size, and meal duration in the dark phase were increased in Nav1.8/LepR (fl/fl) mice; energy expenditure was unaltered. Reduced satiation in Nav1.8/LepR (fl/fl) mice is in part due to reduced sensitivity of VAN to CCK and the subsequent loss of VAN plasticity. Crucially Nav1.8/LepR (l/fl) mice did not gain further weight in response to a high fat diet. We conclude that disruption of leptin signaling in VAN is sufficient and necessary to promote hyperphagia and obesity.

  16. Trk receptor signaling and sensory neuron fate are perturbed in human neuropathy caused by Gars mutations.

    PubMed

    Sleigh, James N; Dawes, John M; West, Steven J; Wei, Na; Spaulding, Emily L; Gómez-Martín, Adriana; Zhang, Qian; Burgess, Robert W; Cader, M Zameel; Talbot, Kevin; Yang, Xiang-Lei; Bennett, David L; Schiavo, Giampietro

    2017-03-28

    Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease type 2D (CMT2D) is a peripheral nerve disorder caused by dominant, toxic, gain-of-function mutations in the widely expressed, housekeeping gene, GARS The mechanisms underlying selective nerve pathology in CMT2D remain unresolved, as does the cause of the mild-to-moderate sensory involvement that distinguishes CMT2D from the allelic disorder distal spinal muscular atrophy type V. To elucidate the mechanism responsible for the underlying afferent nerve pathology, we examined the sensory nervous system of CMT2D mice. We show that the equilibrium between functional subtypes of sensory neuron in dorsal root ganglia is distorted by Gars mutations, leading to sensory defects in peripheral tissues and correlating with overall disease severity. CMT2D mice display changes in sensory behavior concordant with the afferent imbalance, which is present at birth and nonprogressive, indicating that sensory neuron identity is prenatally perturbed and that a critical developmental insult is key to the afferent pathology. Through in vitro experiments, mutant, but not wild-type, GlyRS was shown to aberrantly interact with the Trk receptors and cause misactivation of Trk signaling, which is essential for sensory neuron differentiation and development. Together, this work suggests that both neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative mechanisms contribute to CMT2D pathogenesis, and thus has profound implications for the timing of future therapeutic treatments.

  17. Communication between neuronal somata and satellite glial cells in sensory ganglia.

    PubMed

    Huang, Li-Yen M; Gu, Yanping; Chen, Yong

    2013-10-01

    Studies of the structural organization and functions of the cell body of a neuron (soma) and its surrounding satellite glial cells (SGCs) in sensory ganglia have led to the realization that SGCs actively participate in the information processing of sensory signals from afferent terminals to the spinal cord. SGCs use a variety ways to communicate with each other and with their enwrapped soma. Changes in this communication under injurious conditions often lead to abnormal pain conditions. "What are the mechanisms underlying the neuronal soma and SGC communication in sensory ganglia?" and "how do tissue or nerve injuries affect the communication?" are the main questions addressed in this review.

  18. Identification of specific sensory neuron populations for study of expressed ion channels.

    PubMed

    Ramachandra, Renuka; McGrew, Stephanie; Elmslie, Keith

    2013-12-24

    Sensory neurons transmit signals from various parts of the body to the central nervous system. The soma for these neurons are located in the dorsal root ganglia that line the spinal column. Understanding the receptors and channels expressed by these sensory afferent neurons could lead to novel therapies for disease. The initial step is to identify the specific subset of sensory neurons of interest. Here we describe a method to identify afferent neurons innervating the muscles by retrograde labeling using a fluorescent dye DiI (1,1'-dioctadecyl-3,3,3',3'-tetramethylindocarbocyanine perchlorate). Understanding the contribution of ion channels to excitation of muscle afferents could help to better control excessive excitability induced by certain disease states such as peripheral vascular disease or heart failure. We used two approaches to identify the voltage dependent ion channels expressed by these neurons, patch clamp electrophysiology and immunocytochemistry. While electrophysiology plus pharmacological blockers can identify functional ion channel types, we used immunocytochemistry to identify channels for which specific blockers were unavailable and to better understand the ion channel distribution pattern in the cell population. These techniques can be applied to other areas of the nervous system to study specific neuronal groups.

  19. Amino acid odorants stimulate microvillar sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Lipschitz, David L; Michel, William C

    2002-03-01

    The olfactory epithelium (OE) of zebrafish is populated with ciliated and microvillar olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs). Whether distinct classes of odorants specifically activate either of these unique populations of OSNs is unknown. Previously we demonstrated that zebrafish OSNs could be labeled in an activity-dependent fashion by amino acid but not bile acid odorants. To determine which sensory neuron type was stimulated by amino acid odorants, we labeled OSNs using the ion channel permeant probe agmatine (AGB) and analyzed its distribution with conventional light- and electron-microscope immunocytochemical techniques. Approximately 7% of the sensory epithelium was labeled by AGB exposure alone. Following stimulation with one of the eight amino acids tested, the proportion of labeled epithelium increased from 9% for histidine to 19% for alanine; amino acid stimulated increases in labeling of 2-12% over control labeling. Only histidine failed to stimulate a significant increase in the proportion of labeled OSNs compared to control preparations. Most amino acid sensitive OSNs were located superficially in the epithelium and immuno-electron microscopy demonstrated that the labeled OSNs were predominantly microvillar. Large numbers of nanogold particles (20-60 per 1.5 microm(2)) were associated with microvillar olfactory sensory neurons (MSNs), while few such particles (<15 per 1.5 microm(2)) were observed over ciliated olfactory sensory neurons (CSNs), supporting cells (SCs) and areas without tissue, such as the lumen above the OE. Collectively, these findings indicate that microvillar sensory neurons are capable of detecting amino acid odorants.

  20. Extended secondhand tobacco smoke exposure induces plasticity in nucleus tractus solitarius second-order lung afferent neurons in young guinea pigs.

    PubMed

    Sekizawa, Shin-Ichi; Chen, Chao-Yin; Bechtold, Andrea G; Tabor, Jocelyn M; Bric, John M; Pinkerton, Kent E; Joad, Jesse P; Bonham, Ann C

    2008-08-01

    Infants and young children experiencing extended exposure to secondhand smoke (SHS) have an increased occurrence of asthma, as well as increased cough, wheeze, mucus production and airway hyper-reactivity. Plasticity in lung reflex pathways has been implicated in causing these symptoms, as have changes in substance P-related mechanisms. Using whole-cell voltage-clamp recordings and immunohistochemistry in brainstem slices containing anatomically identified second-order lung afferent nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS) neurons, we determined whether extended SHS exposure during the equivalent period of human childhood modified evoked or spontaneous excitatory synaptic transmission, and whether those modifications were altered by endogenous substance P. SHS exposure enhanced evoked synaptic transmission between sensory afferents and the NTS second-order neurons by eliminating synaptic depression of evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (eEPSCs), an effect reversed by the neurokinin-1-receptor antagonist (SR140333). The recruitment of substance P in enhancing evoked synaptic transmission was further supported by an increased number of substance P-expressing lung afferent central terminals synapsing onto the second-order lung afferent neurons. SHS exposure did not change background spontaneous EPSCs. The data suggest that substance P in the NTS augments evoked synaptic transmission of lung sensory input following extended exposure to a pollutant. The mechanism may help to explain some of the exaggerated respiratory responses of children exposed to SHS.

  1. Three-dimensional distribution of sensory stimulation-evoked neuronal activity of spinal dorsal horn neurons analyzed by in vivo calcium imaging.

    PubMed

    Nishida, Kazuhiko; Matsumura, Shinji; Taniguchi, Wataru; Uta, Daisuke; Furue, Hidemasa; Ito, Seiji

    2014-01-01

    The spinal dorsal horn comprises heterogeneous populations of interneurons and projection neurons, which form neuronal circuits crucial for processing of primary sensory information. Although electrophysiological analyses have uncovered sensory stimulation-evoked neuronal activity of various spinal dorsal horn neurons, monitoring these activities from large ensembles of neurons is needed to obtain a comprehensive view of the spinal dorsal horn circuitry. In the present study, we established in vivo calcium imaging of multiple spinal dorsal horn neurons by using a two-photon microscope and extracted three-dimensional neuronal activity maps of these neurons in response to cutaneous sensory stimulation. For calcium imaging, a fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET)-based calcium indicator protein, Yellow Cameleon, which is insensitive to motion artifacts of living animals was introduced into spinal dorsal horn neurons by in utero electroporation. In vivo calcium imaging following pinch, brush, and heat stimulation suggests that laminar distribution of sensory stimulation-evoked neuronal activity in the spinal dorsal horn largely corresponds to that of primary afferent inputs. In addition, cutaneous pinch stimulation elicited activities of neurons in the spinal cord at least until 2 spinal segments away from the central projection field of primary sensory neurons responsible for the stimulated skin point. These results provide a clue to understand neuronal processing of sensory information in the spinal dorsal horn.

  2. Effects of the neurotrophic factor artemin on sensory afferent development and sensitivity

    PubMed Central

    Shu-Ying, Wang; Elitt, Christopher M.; Malin, Sacha A.; Albers, Kathryn M.

    2009-01-01

    Artemin is a neuronal survival and differentiation factor in the glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor family. Its receptor GFRα3 is expressed by a subpopulation of nociceptor type sensory neurons in the dorsal root and trigeminal ganglia (DRG and TG). These neurons co-express the heat, capsaicin and proton-sensitive channel TRPV1 and the cold and chemical-sensitive channel TRPA1. To further investigate the effects of artemin on sensory neurons, we isolated transgenic mice (ART-OE mice) that overexpress artemin in keratinocytes of the skin and tongue. Enhanced levels of artemin led to a 20% increase in the total number of DRG neurons and increases in the level of mRNA encoding TRPV1 and TRPA1. Calcium imaging showed that isolated sensory neurons from ART-OE mice were hypersensitive to the TRPV1 agonist capsaicin and the TRPA1 agonist mustard oil. Behavioral testing of ART-OE mice also showed an increased sensitivity to heat, cold, capsaicin and mustard oil stimuli applied either to the skin or in the drinking water. Sensory neurons from wildtype mice also exhibited potentiated capsaicin responses following artemin addition to the media. In addition, injection of artemin into hindpaw skin produced transient thermal hyperalgesia. These findings indicate that artemin can modulate sensory function and that this regulation may occur through changes in channel gene expression. Because artemin mRNA expression is up-regulated in inflamed tissue and following nerve injury, it may have a significant role in cellular changes that underlie pain associated with pathological conditions. Manipulation of artemin expression may therefore offer a new pain treatment strategy. PMID:18958361

  3. Effects of the neurotrophic factor artemin on sensory afferent development and sensitivity.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shuying; Elitt, Christopher M; Malin, Sacha A; Albers, Kathryn M

    2008-10-25

    Artemin is a neuronal survival and differentiation factor in the glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor family. Its receptor GFRalpha3 is expressed by a subpopulation of nociceptor type sensory neurons in the dorsal root and trigeminal ganglia (DRG and TG). These neurons co-express the heat, capsaicin and proton-sensitive channel TRPV1 and the cold and chemical-sensitive channel TRPA1. To further investigate the effects of artemin on sensory neurons, we isolated transgenic mice (ARTN-OE mice) that overexpress artemin in keratinocytes of the skin and tongue. Enhanced levels of artemin led to a 20% increase in the total number of DRG neurons and increases in the level of mRNA encoding TRPV1 and TRPA1. Calcium imaging showed that isolated sensory neurons from ARTN-OE mice were hypersensitive to the TRPV1 agonist capsaicin and the TRPA1 agonist mustard oil. Behavioral testing of ARTN-OE mice also showed an increased sensitivity to heat, cold, capsaicin and mustard oil stimuli applied either to the skin or in the drinking water. Sensory neurons from wildtype mice also exhibited potentiated capsaicin responses following artemin addition to the media. In addition, injection of artemin into hindpaw skin produced transient thermal hyperalgesia. These findings indicate that artemin can modulate sensory function and that this regulation may occur through changes in channel gene expression. Because artemin mRNA expression is up-regulated in inflamed tissue and following nerve injury, it may have a significant role in cellular changes that underlie pain associated with pathological conditions. Manipulation of artemin expression may therefore offer a new pain treatment strategy.

  4. Neurones in the brain stem of the cat excited by vagal afferent fibres from the heart and lungs.

    PubMed Central

    Bennett, J A; Goodchild, C S; Kidd, C; McWilliam, P N

    1985-01-01

    Extracellular recordings were made from 164 neurones in the nucleus tractus solitarius and dorsal motor vagal nucleus of the chloralose-anaesthetized cat. 139 neurones were excited synaptically and 25 non-synaptically by electrical stimulation of cardiac and pulmonary vagal branches. Synaptically excited neurones fall into two populations, one activated solely by myelinated afferent fibres and a second activated solely by non-myelinated afferent fibres. 94 neurones were synaptically excited by afferent fibres in a single vagal branch while 45 were excited by stimulation of two or three branches. Neurones responding to volleys in myelinated afferent fibres were located in both medial and lateral regions of the nucleus tractus solitarius whilst those excited by non-myelinated afferent fibres were restricted to the medial region. Consistent differences in the locations of neurones excited by stimulation of either cardiac or pulmonary or by single or several branches could not be distinguished. PMID:4093876

  5. Characterization of spinal afferent neurons projecting to different chambers of the rat heart.

    PubMed

    Guić, Maja Marinović; Kosta, Vana; Aljinović, Jure; Sapunar, Damir; Grković, Ivica

    2010-01-29

    The pattern of distribution of spinal afferent neurons (among dorsal root ganglia-DRGs) that project to anatomically and functionally different chambers of the rat heart, as well as their morphological and neurochemical characteristics were investigated. Retrograde tracing using a patch loaded with Fast blue (FB) was applied to all four chambers of the rat heart and labeled cardiac spinal afferents were characterized by using three neurochemical markers. The majority of cardiac projecting neurons were found from T1 to T4 DRGs, whereas the peak was at T2 DRG. There was no difference in the total number of FB-labeled neurons located in ipsilateral and contralateral DRGs regardless of the chambers marked with the patch. However, significantly more FB-labeled neurons projected to the ventricles compared to the atria (859 vs. 715). The proportion of isolectin B(4) binding in FB-labeled neurons was equal among all neurons projecting to different heart chambers (2.4%). Neurofilament 200 positivity was found in greater proportions in DRG neurons projecting to the left side of the heart, whereas calretinin-immunoreactivity was mostly represented in neurons projecting to the left atrium. Spinal afferent neurons projecting to different chambers of the rat heart exhibit a variety of neurochemical phenotypes depending on binding capacity for isolectin B(4) and immunoreactivity for neurofilament 200 and calretinin, and thus represent important baseline data for future studies.

  6. Opioids inhibit visceral afferent activation of catecholamine neurons in the solitary tract nucleus.

    PubMed

    Cui, R J; Roberts, B L; Zhao, H; Andresen, M C; Appleyard, S M

    2012-10-11

    Brainstem A2/C2 catecholamine (CA) neurons within the solitary tract nucleus (NTS) influence many homeostatic functions, including food intake, stress, respiratory and cardiovascular reflexes. They also play a role in both opioid reward and withdrawal. Injections of opioids into the NTS modulate many autonomic functions influenced by catecholamine neurons including food intake and cardiac function. We recently showed that NTS-CA neurons are directly activated by incoming visceral afferent inputs. Here we determined whether opioid agonists modulate afferent activation of NTS-CA neurons using transgenic mice with EGFP expressed under the control of the tyrosine hydroxylase promoter (TH-EGFP) to identify catecholamine neurons. The opioid agonist Met-enkephalin (Met-Enk) significantly attenuated solitary tract-evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (ST-EPSCs) in NTS TH-EGFP neurons by 80%, an effect reversed by wash or the mu opioid receptor-specific antagonist D-Phe-Cys-Tyr-D-Trp-Orn-Thr-Pen-Thr-NH(2) (CTOP). Met-Enk had a significantly greater effect to inhibit afferent inputs onto TH-EGFP-positive neurons than EGFP-negative neurons, which were only inhibited by 50%. The mu agonist, DAMGO, also inhibited the ST-EPSC in TH-EGFP neurons in a dose-dependent manner. In contrast, neither the delta agonist DPDPE, nor the kappa agonist, U69,593, consistently inhibited the ST-EPSC amplitude. Met-Enk and DAMGO increased the paired pulse ratio, decreased the frequency, but not amplitude, of mini-EPSCs and had no effect on holding current, input resistance or current-voltage relationships in TH-EGFP neurons, suggesting a presynaptic mechanism of action on afferent terminals. Met-Enk significantly reduced both the basal firing rate of NTS TH-EGFP neurons and the ability of afferent stimulation to evoke an action potential. These results suggest that opioids inhibit NTS-CA neurons by reducing an excitatory afferent drive onto these neurons through presynaptic inhibition of

  7. Vagal afferent neurons in high fat diet-induced obesity; intestinal microflora, gut inflammation and cholecystokinin.

    PubMed

    de Lartigue, Guillaume; de La Serre, Claire Barbier; Raybould, Helen E

    2011-11-30

    The vagal afferent pathway is the major neural pathway by which information about ingested nutrients reaches the CNS and influences both GI function and feeding behavior. Vagal afferent neurons (VAN) express receptors for many of the regulatory peptides and molecules released from the intestinal wall, pancreas, and adipocytes that influence GI function, glucose homeostasis, and regulate food intake and body weight. As such, they play a critical role in both physiology and pathophysiology, such as obesity, where there is evidence that vagal afferent function is altered. This review will summarize recent findings on changes in vagal afferent function in response to ingestion of high fat diets and explore the hypothesis that changes in gut microbiota and integrity of the epithelium may not only be important in inducing these changes but may be the initial events that lead to dysregulation of food intake and body weight in response to high fat, high energy diets.

  8. The Order and Place of Neuronal Differentiation Establish the Topography of Sensory Projections and the Entry Points within the Hindbrain.

    PubMed

    Zecca, Andrea; Dyballa, Sylvia; Voltes, Adria; Bradley, Roger; Pujades, Cristina

    2015-05-13

    Establishing topographical maps of the external world is an important but still poorly understood feature of the vertebrate sensory system. To study the selective innervation of hindbrain regions by sensory afferents in the zebrafish embryo, we mapped the fine-grained topographical representation of sensory projections at the central level by specific photoconversion of sensory neurons. Sensory ganglia located anteriorly project more medially than do ganglia located posteriorly, and this relates to the order of sensory ganglion differentiation. By single-plane illumination microscopy (SPIM) in vivo imaging, we show that (1) the sequence of arrival of cranial ganglion inputs predicts the topography of central projections, and (2) delaminated neuroblasts differentiate in close contact with the neural tube, and they never loose contact with the neural ectoderm. Afferent entrance points are established by plasma membrane interactions between primary differentiated peripheral sensory neurons and neural tube border cells with the cooperation of neural crest cells. These first contacts remain during ensuing morphological growth to establish pioneer axons. Neural crest cells and repulsive slit1/robo2 signals then guide axons from later-differentiating neurons toward the neural tube. Thus, this study proposes a new model by which the topographical representation of cranial sensory ganglia is established by entrance order, with the entry points determined by cell contact between the sensory ganglion cell bodies and the hindbrain.

  9. Deep-tissue confocal imaging of the central projections of ovipositor sensory afferents in the Egyptian cotton leafworm, Spodoptera littoralis.

    PubMed

    Seada, Mervat A; Ghaninia, Majid

    2016-03-01

    The pre-ovipositon behavior of moths is largely dependent upon the cues that a gravid female perceives while assessing potential oviposition sites. Assessment of such sites is accomplished, at least in part, by mechanosensory and gustatory sensilla located on the ovipositor whose sensory neurons project into the terminal abdominal ganglion (TAG). Using anterograde backfill staining, confocal laser scanning microscopy, and three dimensional reconstruction, we traced and analyzed the central projections of the sensory neurons housed in the sensilla located on the ovipositor papillae and explored the neuropilar composition of the TAG in the Egyptian cotton leafworm, Spodoptera littoralis. The TAG consists of three fused neuromeres (6-8th Ner) associated with the 6-8th abdominal segments. Within the TAG, and specifically in the 8th neuromere, four unstructured neuropilar compartments are present; the dorso-ipsilateral motor neuropil (MN), the medio-ipsilateral mechanosensory neuropil (MchN), the medio-ipsilateral small gustatory neuropil (GN), and the medio-contralateral posterior ovipositor glomerulus (Og). The Og appears quite compact, with a hollow core free of terminal arborizations. The MchN is further subdivided into 4 unstructured glomeruli in the 8th neuromere, whose afferents are subsequently extended into 3 glomeruli in the 7th and 6th neuromeres. Few neurites of the Og are populated with large dense varicosities reminiscent of neurosecretory vesicles. Given that all ovipositor nerves converge into a common ganglionic center, the TAG, we assume that this ganglion may be a center for coordination of oviposition behaviors, including movements of the ovipositor during assessment of oviposition substrates and egg laying in S. littoralis.

  10. Endocannabinoids and prostaglandins both contribute to GnRH neuron-GABAergic afferent local feedback circuits

    PubMed Central

    Glanowska, Katarzyna M.

    2011-01-01

    Gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) neurons form the final common pathway for central control of fertility. Regulation of GnRH neurons by long-loop gonadal steroid feedback through steroid receptor-expressing afferents such as GABAergic neurons is well studied. Recently, local central feedback circuits regulating GnRH neurons were identified. GnRH neuronal depolarization induces short-term inhibition of their GABAergic afferents via a mechanism dependent on metabotropic glutamate receptor (mGluR) activation. GnRH neurons are enveloped in astrocytes, which express mGluRs. GnRH neurons also produce endocannabinoids, which can be induced by mGluR activation. We hypothesized the local GnRH-GABA circuit utilizes glia-derived and/or cannabinoid mechanisms and is altered by steroid milieu. Whole cell voltage-clamp was used to record GABAergic postsynaptic currents (PSCs) from GnRH neurons before and after action potential-like depolarizations were mimicked. In GnRH neurons from ovariectomized (OVX) mice, this depolarization reduced PSC frequency. This suppression was blocked by inhibition of prostaglandin synthesis with indomethacin, by a prostaglandin receptor antagonist, or by a specific glial metabolic poison, together suggesting the postulate that prostaglandins, potentially glia-derived, play a role in this circuit. This circuit was also inhibited by a CB1 receptor antagonist or by blockade of endocannabinoid synthesis in GnRH neurons, suggesting an endocannabinoid element, as well. In females, local circuit inhibition persisted in androgen-treated mice but not in estradiol-treated mice or young ovary-intact mice. In contrast, local circuit inhibition was present in gonad-intact males. These data suggest GnRH neurons interact with their afferent neurons using multiple mechanisms and that these local circuits can be modified by both sex and steroid feedback. PMID:21917995

  11. Plasticity in vagal afferent neurones during feeding and fasting: mechanisms and significance.

    PubMed

    Dockray, G J; Burdyga, G

    2011-03-01

    The ingestion of food activates mechanisms leading to inhibition of food intake and gastric emptying mediated by the release of regulatory peptides, for example cholecystokinin (CCK), and lipid amides, e.g. oleylethanolamide from the gut. In addition, there are both peptides (e.g. ghrelin) and lipid amides (e.g. anandamide) that appear to signal the absence of food in the gut and that are associated with the stimulation of food intake. Vagal afferent neurones are a common target for both types of signal. Remarkably, the neurochemical phenotype of these neurones itself depends on nutritional status. CCK acting at CCK1 receptors on vagal afferent neurones stimulates expression in these neurones of Y2-receptors and the neuropeptide CART, both of which are associated with the inhibition of food intake. Conversely, in fasted rats when plasma CCK is low, these neurones express cannabinoid (CB)-1 and melanin concentrating hormone (MCH)-1 receptors, and MCH, and this is inhibited by exogenous CCK or endogenous CCK released by refeeding. The stimulation of CART expression by CCK is mediated by the activation of CREB and EGR1; ghrelin inhibits the action of CCK by promoting nuclear exclusion of CREB and leptin potentiates the action of CCK by the stimulation of EGR1 expression. Vagal afferent neurones therefore constitute a level of integration outside the CNS for nutrient-derived signals that control energy intake and that are capable of encoding recent nutrient ingestion.

  12. The influence of sensory afferent input on local motor cortical excitatory circuitry in humans

    PubMed Central

    Cash, Robin F H; Isayama, Reina; Gunraj, Carolyn A; Ni, Zhen; Chen, Robert

    2015-01-01

    Key points In the human, sensorimotor integration can be investigated using combined sensory and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). Short latency afferent inhibition (SAI) refers to motor cortical inhibition 20–25ms after median nerve stimulation. We investigated the influence of SAI on a local excitatory interneuronal motor cortical circuit known as short-interval intracortical facilitation (SICF) and found that, contrary to expectations, SICF was facilitated in the presence of SAI (SICFSAI); this effect is specific to SICF since there was no effect in control conditions in which SICF was not elicited, and the facilitatory SICFSAI interaction increased with increasing strength of SICF or SAI. The influence of sensory input on excitatory motor cortical circuitry was similar across different bodily regions, different circuits within motor cortex and across functional states, suggesting that this interaction may have general applicability in sensorimotor integration and motor control. SAI and SICF were found to correlate between individuals in that those with high SAI were found to have high SICF, and this relationship was maintained when SICF was delivered in the presence of SAI, suggesting an intrinsic relationship between SAI and SICF; these findings are compatible with brain-slice studies of sensorimotor circuitry and add to our understanding of sensorimotor integration. Abstract In human, sensorimotor integration can be investigated by combining sensory input and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). Short latency afferent inhibition (SAI) refers to motor cortical inhibition 20–25 ms after median nerve stimulation. We investigated the interaction between SAI and short-interval intracortical facilitation (SICF), an excitatory motor cortical circuit. Seven experiments were performed. Contrary to expectations, SICF was facilitated in the presence of SAI (SICFSAI). This effect is specific to SICF since there was no effect at SICF trough 1 when SICF was

  13. Competition with Primary Sensory Afferents Drives Remodeling of Corticospinal Axons in Mature Spinal Motor Circuits

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Yu-Qiu; Zaaimi, Boubker

    2016-01-01

    Injury to the mature motor system drives significant spontaneous axonal sprouting instead of axon regeneration. Knowing the circuit-level determinants of axonal sprouting is important for repairing motor circuits after injury to achieve functional rehabilitation. Competitive interactions are known to shape corticospinal tract axon outgrowth and withdrawal during development. Whether and how competition contributes to reorganization of mature spinal motor circuits is unclear. To study this question, we examined plastic changes in corticospinal axons in response to two complementary proprioceptive afferent manipulations: (1) enhancing proprioceptive afferents activity by electrical stimulation; or (2) diminishing their input by dorsal rootlet rhizotomy. Experiments were conducted in adult rats. Electrical stimulation produced proprioceptive afferent sprouting that was accompanied by significant corticospinal axon withdrawal and a decrease in corticospinal connections on cholinergic interneurons in the medial intermediate zone and C boutons on motoneurons. In contrast, dorsal rootlet rhizotomy led to a significant increase in corticospinal connections, including those on cholinergic interneurons; C bouton density increased correspondingly. Motor cortex-evoked muscle potentials showed parallel changes to those of corticospinal axons, suggesting that reciprocal corticospinal axon changes are functional. Using the two complementary models, we showed that competitive interactions between proprioceptive and corticospinal axons are an important determinant in the organization of mature corticospinal axons and spinal motor circuits. The activity- and synaptic space-dependent properties of the competition enables prediction of the remodeling of spared corticospinal connection and spinal motor circuits after injury and informs the target-specific control of corticospinal connections to promote functional recovery. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Neuroplasticity is limited in maturity

  14. Voltage-dependent sodium (NaV) channels in group IV sensory afferents

    PubMed Central

    Elmslie, Keith S

    2016-01-01

    Patients with intermittent claudication suffer from both muscle pain and an exacerbated exercise pressor reflex. Excitability of the group III and group IV afferent fibers mediating these functions is controlled in part by voltage-dependent sodium (NaV) channels. We previously found tetrodotoxin-resistant NaV1.8 channels to be the primary type in muscle afferent somata. However, action potentials in group III and IV afferent axons are blocked by TTX, supporting a minimal role of NaV1.8 channels. To address these apparent differences in NaV channel expression between axon and soma, we used immunohistochemistry to identify the NaV channels expressed in group IV axons within the gastrocnemius muscle and the dorsal root ganglia sections. Positive labeling by an antibody against the neurofilament protein peripherin was used to identify group IV neurons and axons. We show that >67% of group IV fibers express NaV1.8, NaV1.6, or NaV1.7. Interestingly, expression of NaV1.8 channels in group IV somata was significantly higher than in the fibers, whereas there were no significant differences for either NaV1.6 or NaV1.7. When combined with previous work, our results suggest that NaV1.8 channels are expressed in most group IV axons, but that, under normal conditions, NaV1.6 and/or NaV1.7 play a more important role in action potential generation to signal muscle pain and the exercise pressor reflex. PMID:27385723

  15. Botulinum toxin B in the sensory afferent: transmitter release, spinal activation, and pain behavior.

    PubMed

    Marino, Marc J; Terashima, Tetsuji; Steinauer, Joanne J; Eddinger, Kelly A; Yaksh, Tony L; Xu, Qinghao

    2014-04-01

    We addressed the hypothesis that intraplantar botulinum toxin B (rimabotulinumtoxin B: BoNT-B) has an early local effect upon peripheral afferent terminal releasing function and, over time, will be transported to the central terminals of the primary afferent. Once in the terminals it will cleave synaptic protein, block spinal afferent transmitter release, and thereby prevent spinal nociceptive excitation and behavior. In mice, C57Bl/6 males, intraplantar BoNT-B (1 U) given unilaterally into the hind paw had no effect upon survival or motor function, but ipsilaterally decreased: (1) intraplantar formalin-evoked flinching; (2) intraplantar capsaicin-evoked plasma extravasation in the hind paw measured by Evans blue in the paw; (3) intraplantar formalin-evoked dorsal horn substance P (SP) release (neurokinin 1 [NK1] receptor internalization); (4) intraplantar formalin-evoked dorsal horn neuronal activation (c-fos); (5) ipsilateral dorsal root ganglion (DRG) vesicle-associated membrane protein (VAMP); (6) ipsilateral SP release otherwise evoked bilaterally by intrathecal capsaicin; (7) ipsilateral activation of c-fos otherwise evoked bilaterally by intrathecal SP. These results indicate that BoNT-B, after unilateral intraplantar delivery, is taken up by the peripheral terminal, is locally active (blocking plasma extravasation), is transported to the ipsilateral DRG to cleave VAMP, and is acting presynaptically to block release from the spinal peptidergic terminal. The observations following intrathecal SP offer evidence for a possible transsynaptic effect of intraplantar BoNT. These results provide robust evidence that peripheral BoNT-B can alter peripheral and central terminal release from a nociceptor and attenuate downstream nociceptive processing via a presynaptic effect, with further evidence suggesting a possible postsynaptic effect.

  16. Some Rat Sensory Neurons in Culture Express Characteristics of Differentiated Pain Sensory Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baccaglini, Paola I.; Hogan, Patrick G.

    1983-01-01

    Sensory neurons were dissociated from trigeminal ganglia or from dorsal root ganglia of rats, grown in culture, and examined for expression of properties of pain sensory cells. Many sensory neurons in culture are excited by low concentrations of capsaicin, reportedly a selective stimulus for pain sensory neurons. Many are excited by bradykinin, sensitized by prostaglandin E2, or specifically stained by an antiserum against substance P. These experiments provide a basis for the study of pain mechanisms in cell culture.

  17. Distribution of voltage-gated potassium (Kv) and hyperpolarization-activated (HCN) channels in sensory afferent fibers in the rat carotid body

    PubMed Central

    Buniel, Maria; Glazebrook, Patricia A.; Ramirez-Navarro, Angelina; Kunze, Diana L.

    2008-01-01

    The chemosensory glomus cells of the carotid body (CB) detect changes in O2-tension. Carotid sinus nerve fibers, which originate from peripheral sensory neurons located within the petrosal ganglion, innervate the CB. Release of transmitter from glomus cells activates the sensory afferent fibers to transmit information to the nucleus of the solitary tract in the brainstem. The ion channels expressed within the sensory nerve terminals play an essential role in the ability of the terminal to initiate action potentials in response to transmitter-evoked depolarization. However, with a few exceptions, the identity of ion channels expressed in these peripheral nerve fibers is unknown. This study addresses the expression of voltage-gated channels in the sensory fibers with a focus on channels that set the resting membrane potential and regulate discharge patterns. Using immunohistochemistry and fluorescence confocal microscopy, potassium channel subunits and HCN (hyperpolarization-activated) family members were localized both in petrosal neurons that expressed tyrosine hydroxylase, and the CSN axons within the carotid body. Channels contributing to resting membrane potential including HCN2, responsible in part for Ih current, and the KCNQ2 and KCNQ5 subunits thought to underlie the neuronal “M current” were identified in the sensory neurons and their axons innervating the carotid body. In addition, the results presented here demonstrate expression of several potassium channels that shape the action potential and the frequency of discharge including Kv1.4, Kv1.5, Kv4.3, KCa (BK). The role of these channels should be considered in interpretation of the fiber discharge in response to perturbation of the carotid body environment. PMID:18668683

  18. Combined Changes in Chloride Regulation and Neuronal Excitability Enable Primary Afferent Depolarization to Elicit Spiking without Compromising its Inhibitory Effects

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    The central terminals of primary afferent fibers experience depolarization upon activation of GABAA receptors (GABAAR) because their intracellular chloride concentration is maintained above electrochemical equilibrium. Primary afferent depolarization (PAD) normally mediates inhibition via sodium channel inactivation and shunting but can evoke spikes under certain conditions. Antidromic (centrifugal) conduction of these spikes may contribute to neurogenic inflammation while orthodromic (centripetal) conduction could contribute to pain in the case of nociceptive fibers. PAD-induced spiking is assumed to override presynaptic inhibition. Using computer simulations and dynamic clamp experiments, we sought to identify which biophysical changes are required to enable PAD-induced spiking and whether those changes necessarily compromise PAD-mediated inhibition. According to computational modeling, a depolarizing shift in GABA reversal potential (EGABA) and increased intrinsic excitability (manifest as altered spike initiation properties) were necessary for PAD-induced spiking, whereas increased GABAAR conductance density (ḡGABA) had mixed effects. We tested our predictions experimentally by using dynamic clamp to insert virtual GABAAR conductances with different EGABA and kinetics into acutely dissociated dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neuron somata. Comparable experiments in central axon terminals are prohibitively difficult but the biophysical requirements for PAD-induced spiking are arguably similar in soma and axon. Neurons from naïve (i.e. uninjured) rats were compared before and after pharmacological manipulation of intrinsic excitability, and against neurons from nerve-injured rats. Experimental data confirmed that, in most neurons, both predicted changes were necessary to yield PAD-induced spiking. Importantly, such changes did not prevent PAD from inhibiting other spiking or from blocking spike propagation. In fact, since the high value of ḡGABA required for PAD

  19. The influence of sensory afferent input on local motor cortical excitatory circuitry in humans.

    PubMed

    Cash, Robin F H; Isayama, Reina; Gunraj, Carolyn A; Ni, Zhen; Chen, Robert

    2015-04-01

    In human, sensorimotor integration can be investigated by combining sensory input and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). Short latency afferent inhibition (SAI) refers to motor cortical inhibition 20-25 ms after median nerve stimulation. We investigated the interaction between SAI and short-interval intracortical facilitation (SICF), an excitatory motor cortical circuit. Seven experiments were performed. Contrary to expectations, SICF was facilitated in the presence of SAI (SICF(SAI)). This effect is specific to SICF since there was no effect at SICF trough 1 when SICF was absent. Furthermore, the facilitatory SICF(SAI) interaction increased with stronger SICF or SAI. SAI and SICF correlated between individuals, and this relationship was maintained when SICF was delivered in the presence of SAI, suggesting an intrinsic relationship between SAI and SICF in sensorimotor integration. The interaction was present at rest and during muscle contraction, had a broad degree of somatotopic influence and was present in different interneuronal SICF circuits induced by posterior-anterior and anterior-posterior current directions. Our results are compatible with the finding that projections from sensory to motor cortex terminate in both superficial layers where late indirect (I-) waves are thought to originate, as well as deeper layers with more direct effect on pyramidal output. This interaction is likely to be relevant to sensorimotor integration and motor control.

  20. Chronic exposure to low dose bacterial lipopolysaccharide inhibits leptin signaling in vagal afferent neurons.

    PubMed

    de La Serre, Claire B; de Lartigue, Guillaume; Raybould, Helen E

    2015-02-01

    Bacterially derived factors are implicated in the causation and persistence of obesity. Ingestion of a high fat diet in rodents and obesity in human subjects is associated with chronic elevation of low plasma levels of lipopolysaccharide (LPS), a breakdown product of Gram-negative bacteria. The terminals of vagal afferent neurons are positioned within the gut mucosa to convey information from the gut to the brain to regulate food intake and are responsive to LPS. We hypothesized that chronic elevation of LPS could alter vagal afferent signaling. We surgically implanted osmotic mini-pumps that delivered a constant, low-dose of LPS into the intraperitoneal cavity of rats (12.5 μg/kg/hr for 6 weeks). LPS-treated rats developed hyperphagia and showed marked changes in vagal afferent neuron function. Chronic LPS treatment reduced vagal afferent leptin signaling, characterized by a decrease in leptin-induced STAT3 phosphorylation. In addition, LPS treatment decreased cholecystokinin-induced satiety. There was no alteration in leptin signaling in the hypothalamus. These findings offer a mechanism by which a change in gut microflora can promote hyperphagia, possibly leading to obesity.

  1. TRPA1 modulates mechanotransduction in cutaneous sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Kwan, Kelvin Y; Glazer, Joshua M; Corey, David P; Rice, Frank L; Stucky, Cheryl L

    2009-04-15

    Transient receptor potential ankyrin 1 (TRPA1) is expressed by nociceptive neurons of the dorsal root ganglia (DRGs) and trigeminal ganglia, but its roles in cold and mechanotransduction are controversial. To determine the contribution of TRPA1 to cold and mechanotransduction in cutaneous primary afferent terminals, we used the ex vivo skin-nerve preparation from Trpa1(+/+), Trpa1(+/-), and Trpa1(-/-) adult mouse littermates. Cutaneous fibers from TRPA1-deficient mice showed no deficits in acute cold sensitivity, but they displayed striking deficits in mechanical response properties. C-fiber nociceptors from Trpa1(-/-) mice exhibited action potential firing rates 50% lower than those in wild-type C-fibers across a wide range of force intensities. Adelta-fiber mechanonociceptors also had reduced firing, but only at high intensity forces (>100 mN). Surprisingly, the firing rates of low-threshold Abeta and D-hair mechanoreceptive fibers were also altered. TRPA1 protein and mRNA expression was assessed in DRG neurons and cutaneous innervation by using Trpa1 in situ hybridization, an antibody for TRPA1, and an antibody for placental alkaline phosphatase (PLAP) in mice in which PLAP was substituted for Trpa1. DRG neurons of all sizes expressed Trpa1 mRNA or PLAP immunoreactivity. TRPA1 or PLAP immunolabeling was detected not only on many thin-caliber axons and intraepidermal endings but also on many large-caliber axons as well as lanceolate and Meissner endings. Epidermal and hair follicle keratinocytes also express TRPA1 message and protein. We propose that TRPA1 modulates mechanotransduction via a cell-autonomous mechanism in nociceptor terminals and possibly through a modulatory role in keratinocytes, which may interact with sensory terminals to modify their mechanical firing properties.

  2. Dynamic synchronization of ongoing neuronal activity across spinal segments regulates sensory information flow

    PubMed Central

    Contreras-Hernández, E; Chávez, D; Rudomin, P

    2015-01-01

    Previous studies on the correlation between spontaneous cord dorsum potentials recorded in the lumbar spinal segments of anaesthetized cats suggested the operation of a population of dorsal horn neurones that modulates, in a differential manner, transmission along pathways mediating Ib non-reciprocal postsynaptic inhibition and pathways mediating primary afferent depolarization and presynaptic inhibition. In order to gain further insight into the possible neuronal mechanisms that underlie this process, we have measured changes in the correlation between the spontaneous activity of individual dorsal horn neurones and the cord dorsum potentials associated with intermittent activation of these inhibitory pathways. We found that high levels of neuronal synchronization within the dorsal horn are associated with states of incremented activity along the pathways mediating presynaptic inhibition relative to pathways mediating Ib postsynaptic inhibition. It is suggested that ongoing changes in the patterns of functional connectivity within a distributed ensemble of dorsal horn neurones play a relevant role in the state-dependent modulation of impulse transmission along inhibitory pathways, among them those involved in the central control of sensory information. This feature would allow the same neuronal network to be involved in different functional tasks. Key points We have examined, in the spinal cord of the anaesthetized cat, the relationship between ongoing correlated fluctuations of dorsal horn neuronal activity and state-dependent activation of inhibitory reflex pathways. We found that high levels of synchronization between the spontaneous activity of dorsal horn neurones occur in association with the preferential activation of spinal pathways leading to primary afferent depolarization and presynaptic inhibition relative to activation of pathways mediating Ib postsynaptic inhibition. It is suggested that changes in synchronization of ongoing activity within a

  3. Afferent Fiber Remodeling in the Somatosensory Thalamus of Mice as a Neural Basis of Somatotopic Reorganization in the Brain and Ectopic Mechanical Hypersensitivity after Peripheral Sensory Nerve Injury

    PubMed Central

    Yagasaki, Yuki; Katayama, Yoko

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Plastic changes in the CNS in response to peripheral sensory nerve injury are a series of complex processes, ranging from local circuit remodeling to somatotopic reorganization. However, the link between circuit remodeling and somatotopic reorganization remains unclear. We have previously reported that transection of the primary whisker sensory nerve causes the abnormal rewiring of lemniscal fibers (sensory afferents) on a neuron in the mouse whisker sensory thalamus (V2 VPM). In the present study, using transgenic mice whose lemniscal fibers originate from the whisker sensory principle trigeminal nucleus (PrV2) are specifically labeled, we identified that the transection induced retraction of PrV2-originating lemniscal fibers and invasion of those not originating from PrV2 in the V2 VPM. This anatomical remodeling with somatotopic reorganization was highly correlated with the rewiring of lemniscal fibers. Origins of the non-PrV2-origin lemniscal fibers in the V2 VPM included the mandibular subregion of trigeminal nuclei and the dorsal column nuclei (DCNs), which normally represent body parts other than whiskers. The transection also resulted in ectopic receptive fields of V2 VPM neurons and extraterritorial pain behavior on the uninjured mandibular region of the face. The anatomical remodeling, emergence of ectopic receptive fields, and extraterritorial pain behavior all concomitantly developed within a week and lasted more than three months after the transection. Our findings, thus, indicate a strong linkage between these plastic changes after peripheral sensory nerve injury, which may provide a neural circuit basis underlying large-scale reorganization of somatotopic representation and abnormal ectopic sensations.

  4. Sensory Feedback in Interlimb Coordination: Contralateral Afferent Contribution to the Short-Latency Crossed Response during Human Walking

    PubMed Central

    Gervasio, Sabata; Voigt, Michael; Kersting, Uwe G.; Farina, Dario; Sinkjær, Thomas

    2017-01-01

    A constant coordination between the left and right leg is required to maintain stability during human locomotion, especially in a variable environment. The neural mechanisms underlying this interlimb coordination are not yet known. In animals, interneurons located within the spinal cord allow direct communication between the two sides without the need for the involvement of higher centers. These may also exist in humans since sensory feedback elicited by tibial nerve stimulation on one side (ipsilateral) can affect the muscles activation in the opposite side (contralateral), provoking short-latency crossed responses (SLCRs). The current study investigated whether contralateral afferent feedback contributes to the mechanism controlling the SLCR in human gastrocnemius muscle. Surface electromyogram, kinematic and kinetic data were recorded from subjects during normal walking and hybrid walking (with the legs moving in opposite directions). An inverse dynamics model was applied to estimate the gastrocnemius muscle proprioceptors’ firing rate. During normal walking, a significant correlation was observed between the magnitude of SLCRs and the estimated muscle spindle secondary afferent activity (P = 0.04). Moreover, estimated spindle secondary afferent and Golgi tendon organ activity were significantly different (P ≤ 0.01) when opposite responses have been observed, that is during normal (facilitation) and hybrid walking (inhibition) conditions. Contralateral sensory feedback, specifically spindle secondary afferents, likely plays a significant role in generating the SLCR. This observation has important implications for our understanding of what future research should be focusing on to optimize locomotor recovery in patient populations. PMID:28060839

  5. Trafficking regulates the subcellular distribution of voltage-gated sodium channels in primary sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Bao, Lan

    2015-09-30

    Voltage-gated sodium channels (Navs) comprise at least nine pore-forming α subunits. Of these, Nav1.6, Nav1.7, Nav1.8 and Nav1.9 are the most frequently studied in primary sensory neurons located in the dorsal root ganglion and are mainly localized to the cytoplasm. A large pool of intracellular Navs raises the possibility that changes in Nav trafficking could alter channel function. The molecular mediators of Nav trafficking mainly consist of signals within the Navs themselves, interacting proteins and extracellular factors. The surface expression of Navs is achieved by escape from the endoplasmic reticulum and proteasome degradation, forward trafficking and plasma membrane anchoring, and it is also regulated by channel phosphorylation and ubiquitination in primary sensory neurons. Axonal transport and localization of Navs in afferent fibers involves the motor protein KIF5B and scaffold proteins, including contactin and PDZ domain containing 2. Localization of Nav1.6 to the nodes of Ranvier in myelinated fibers of primary sensory neurons requires node formation and the submembrane cytoskeletal protein complex. These findings inform our understanding of the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying Nav trafficking in primary sensory neurons.

  6. Cholinergic modulation of primary afferent glutamatergic transmission in rat medullary dorsal horn neurons.

    PubMed

    Jeong, Seok-Gwon; Choi, In-Sun; Cho, Jin-Hwa; Jang, Il-Sung

    2013-12-01

    Although muscarinic acetylcholine (mACh) receptors are expressed in trigeminal ganglia, it is still unknown whether mACh receptors modulate glutamatergic transmission from primary afferents onto medullary dorsal horn neurons. In this study, we have addressed the cholinergic modulation of primary afferent glutamatergic transmission using a conventional whole cell patch clamp technique. Glutamatergic excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) were evoked from primary afferents by electrical stimulation of trigeminal tract and monosynaptic EPSCs were recorded from medullary dorsal horn neurons of rat horizontal brain stem slices. Muscarine and ACh reversibly and concentration-dependently decreased the amplitude of glutamatergic EPSCs and increased the paired-pulse ratio. In addition, muscarine reduced the frequency of miniature EPSCs without affecting the current amplitude, suggesting that muscarine acts presynaptically to decrease the probability of glutamate release onto medullary dorsal horn neurons. The muscarine-induced decrease of glutamatergic EPSCs was significantly occluded by methoctramine or AF-DX116, M2 receptor antagonists, but not pirenzepine, J104129 and MT-3, selective M1, M3 and M4 receptor antagonists. The muscarine-induced decrease of glutamatergic EPSCs was highly dependent on the extracellular Ca2+ concentration. Physostigmine and clinically available acetylcholinesterase inhibitors, such as rivastigmine and donepezil, significantly shifted the concentration-inhibition relationship of ACh for glutamatergic EPSCs. These results suggest that muscarine acts on presynaptic M2 receptors to inhibit glutamatergic transmission by reducing the Ca2+ influx into primary afferent terminals, and that M2 receptor agonists and acetylcholinesterase inhibitors could be, at least, potential targets to reduce nociceptive transmission from orofacial tissues.

  7. System identification of Drosophila olfactory sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Kim, Anmo J; Lazar, Aurel A; Slutskiy, Yevgeniy B

    2011-02-01

    The lack of a deeper understanding of how olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs) encode odors has hindered the progress in understanding the olfactory signal processing in higher brain centers. Here we employ methods of system identification to investigate the encoding of time-varying odor stimuli and their representation for further processing in the spike domain by Drosophila OSNs. In order to apply system identification techniques, we built a novel low-turbulence odor delivery system that allowed us to deliver airborne stimuli in a precise and reproducible fashion. The system provides a 1% tolerance in stimulus reproducibility and an exact control of odor concentration and concentration gradient on a millisecond time scale. Using this novel setup, we recorded and analyzed the in-vivo response of OSNs to a wide range of time-varying odor waveforms. We report for the first time that across trials the response of OR59b OSNs is very precise and reproducible. Further, we empirically show that the response of an OSN depends not only on the concentration, but also on the rate of change of the odor concentration. Moreover, we demonstrate that a two-dimensional (2D) Encoding Manifold in a concentration-concentration gradient space provides a quantitative description of the neuron's response. We then use the white noise system identification methodology to construct one-dimensional (1D) and two-dimensional (2D) Linear-Nonlinear-Poisson (LNP) cascade models of the sensory neuron for a fixed mean odor concentration and fixed contrast. We show that in terms of predicting the intensity rate of the spike train, the 2D LNP model performs on par with the 1D LNP model, with a root mean-square error (RMSE) increase of about 5 to 10%. Surprisingly, we find that for a fixed contrast of the white noise odor waveforms, the nonlinear block of each of the two models changes with the mean input concentration. The shape of the nonlinearities of both the 1D and the 2D LNP model appears to be

  8. Nicotinic receptor activation on primary sensory afferents modulates autorhythmicity in the mouse renal pelvis

    PubMed Central

    Nguyen, M J; Angkawaijawa, S; Hashitani, H; Lang, R J

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE The modulation of the spontaneous electrical and Ca2+ signals underlying pyeloureteric peristalsis upon nicotinic receptor activation located on primary sensory afferents (PSAs) was investigated in the mouse renal pelvis. EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH Contractile activity was followed using video microscopy, electrical and Ca2+ signals in typical and atypical smooth muscle cells (TSMCs and ASMCs) within the renal pelvis were recorded separately using intracellular microelectrodes and Fluo-4 Ca2+ imaging. KEY RESULTS Nicotine and carbachol (CCh; 1–100 μM) transiently reduced the frequency and increased the amplitude of spontaneous phasic contractions in a manner unaffected by muscarininc antagonists, 4-DAMP (1,1-dimethyl-4-diphenylacetoxypiperidinium iodide) and pirenzipine (10 nM) or L-NAME (L-Nω-nitroarginine methyl ester; 200 μM), inhibitor of NO synthesis, but blocked by the nicotinic antagonist, hexamethonium or capsaicin, depletor of PSA neuropeptides. These negative chronotropic and delayed positive inotropic effects of CCh on TSMC contractions, action potentials and Ca2+ transients were inhibited by glibenclamide (Glib; 1 μM), blocker of ATP-dependent K (KATP) channels. Nicotinic receptor-evoked inhibition of the spontaneous Ca2+ transients in ASMCs was prevented by capsaicin but not Glib. In contrast, the negative inotropic and chronotropic effects of the non-selective COX inhibitor indomethacin were not prevented by Glib. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS The negative chronotropic effect of nicotinic receptor activation results from the release of calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) from PSAs, which suppresses Ca2+ signalling in ASMCs. PSA-released CGRP also evokes a transient hyperpolarization in TSMCs upon the opening of KATP channels, which reduces contraction propagation but promotes the recruitment of TSMC Ca2+ channels that underlie the delayed positive inotropic effects of CCh. PMID:24004375

  9. Sensory afferent segregation in three-eared frogs resemble the dominance columns observed in three-eyed frogs

    PubMed Central

    Elliott, Karen L.; Houston, Douglas W.; Fritzsch, Bernd

    2015-01-01

    The formation of proper sensory afferent connections during development is essential for brain function. Activity-based competition is believed to drive ocular dominance columns (ODC) in mammals and in experimentally-generated three-eyed frogs. ODC formation is thus a compromise of activity differences between two eyes and similar molecular cues. To gauge the generality of graphical map formation in the brain, we investigated the inner ear projection, known for its well-defined and early segregation of afferents from vestibular and auditory endorgans. In analogy to three eyed-frogs, we generated three-eared frogs to assess to what extent vestibular afferents from two adjacent ears could segregate. Donor ears were transplanted either in the native orientation or rotated by 90 degrees. These manipulations should result in either similar or different induced activity between both ears, respectively. Three-eared frogs with normal orientation showed normal swimming whereas those with a rotated third ear showed aberrant behaviors. Projection studies revealed that only afferents from the rotated ears segregated from those from the native ear within the vestibular nucleus, resembling the ocular dominance columns formed in three-eyed frogs. Vestibular segregation suggests that mechanisms comparable to those operating in the ODC formation of the visual system may act on vestibular projection refinements. PMID:25661240

  10. Rescue of neuronal function by cross-regeneration of cutaneous afferents into muscle in cats.

    PubMed

    Nishimura, H; Johnson, R D; Munson, J B

    1993-07-01

    and periphery after cross-regeneration. 7. Chronic axotomy of CCS increased the latencies of PSPs from CCS; regeneration of CCS into the CCS, LCS, or MG restored normal latencies. 8. In summary, CDPs and PSPs in motoneurons from the cutaneous sensory nerve CCS are altered by chronic axotomy of CCS, thus indicating their target dependency. These alterations are restored by regeneration of CCS into not only a native or foreign cutaneous target, but also into skeletal muscle. We conclude that muscle as well as skin is capable of providing trophic support for cutaneous afferents.

  11. Primary sensory afferent innervation of the developing superficial dorsal horn in the South American opossum Monodelphis domestica.

    PubMed

    Kitchener, Peter D; Hutton, Elspeth J; Knott, Graham W

    2006-03-01

    The development of the primary sensory innervation of the superficial dorsal horn (SDH) was studied in postnatal opossums Monodelphis domestica by using DiI labelling of primary afferents and with GSA-IB(4) lectin binding and calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) immunoreactivity to label primary afferent subpopulations. We also compared the timing of SDH innervation in the cervical and lumbar regions of the spinal cord. The first primary afferent projections to SDH emerge from the most lateral part of the dorsal root entry zone at postnatal day 5 and project around the lateral edge of the SDH toward lamina V. Innervation of the SDH occurs slowly over the second and third postnatal weeks, with the most dorsal aspect becoming populated by mediolaterally oriented varicose fibers before the rest of the dorsoventral thickness of the SDH becomes innervated by fine branching varicose fibers. Labelling with GSA-IB(4) lectin also labelled fibers at the lateral edge of the dorsal horn and SDH at P5, indicating that the GSA-IB(4) is expressed on SDH/lamina V primary afferents at the time when they are making their projections into the spinal cord. In contrast, CGRP-immunoreactive afferents were not evident until postnatal day 7, when a few short projections into the lateral dorsal horn were observed. These afferents then followed a pattern similar to the development of GSA-IB(4) projects but with a latency of several days. The adult pattern of labelling by GSA-IB(4) is achieved by about postnatal day 20, whereas the adult pattern of CGRP labelling was not seen until postnatal day 30. Electron microscopy revealed a few immature synapses in the region of the developing SDH at postnatal day 10, and processes considered to be precursors of glomerular synapses (and thus of primary afferent origin) were first seen at postnatal day 16 and adopted their definitive appearance between postnatal days 28 and 55. Although structural and functional development of forelimbs of neonatal

  12. [Convergence and interaction of reticulofugal and afferent impulses on caudate nucleus neurons in the cat].

    PubMed

    Litvinova, A N; Verba, V G

    1987-01-01

    In chronic experiments on cats the activity of 269 striatal neurons was investigated extracellularly under direct electrical stimulation of the midbrain reticular formation and using different sensory stimuli: auditory, mechanical, visual. The same striatal neuron responded to reticular and peripheral stimulations. The responses to reticular stimulation recorded in 53% of striatal neurons were orthodromic with high probability of appearance. 23% of striatal neurons responded to reticular stimulation and to stimuli of a single modality. 14% of neurons exhibited polymodal responses. Under all kinds of stimulation excitatory reactions prevailed. Interaction between reticular and acoustic inputs was revealed with paired stimulation in 100 striatal neurons. The reticular formation stimulation caused both facilitatory (predominantly) and inhibitory influences on striatal neurons.

  13. Intraganglionic interactions between satellite cells and adult sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Christie, Kimberly; Koshy, Dilip; Cheng, Chu; Guo, GuiFang; Martinez, Jose A; Duraikannu, Arul; Zochodne, Douglas W

    2015-07-01

    Perineuronal satellite cells have an intimate anatomical relationship with sensory neurons that suggests close functional collaboration and mutual support. We examined several facets of this relationship in adult sensory dorsal root ganglia (DRG). Collaboration included the support of process outgrowth by clustering of satellite cells, induction of distal branching behavior by soma signaling, the capacity of satellite cells to respond to distal axon injury of its neighboring neurons, and evidence of direct neuron-satellite cell exchange. In vitro, closely adherent coharvested satellite cells routinely clustered around new outgrowing processes and groups of satellite cells attracted neurite processes. Similar clustering was encountered in the pseudounipolar processes of intact sensory neurons within intact DRG in vivo. While short term exposure of distal growth cones of unselected adult sensory neurons to transient gradients of a PTEN inhibitor had negligible impacts on their behavior, exposure of the soma induced early and substantial growth of their distant neurites and branches, an example of local soma signaling. In turn, satellite cells sensed when distal neuronal axons were injured by enlarging and proliferating. We also observed that satellite cells were capable of internalizing and expressing a neuron fluorochrome label, diamidino yellow, applied remotely to distal injured axons of the neuron and retrogradely transported to dorsal root ganglia sensory neurons. The findings illustrate a robust interaction between intranganglionic neurons and glial cells that involve two way signals, features that may be critical for both regenerative responses and ongoing maintenance.

  14. Neuronal pathways from foot pad afferents to hindlimb motoneurons in the low spinalized cats.

    PubMed

    Wada, N; Kanda, Y; Takayama, R

    1998-07-01

    Experiments were performed on 16 adult spinalized (L2) cats. Postsynaptic potentials (PSPs) produced by electrical stimulation of afferent nerves innervating foot pads were recorded from hindlimb motoneurons innervating the following hindlimb muscles: the posterior biceps and semitendinosus (PBSt), anterior biceps and semimembranosus (ABSm), lateral gastrocnemius and soleus (LGS), medial gastrocnemius (MG), plantaris (P1), tibialis anterior (TA), popliteus (Pop), flexor digitorum longus and flexor hallucis longus (FDHL) and peroneus longus (Per.l). The rate of occurrence of different types of PSPs (EPSPs, IPSPs and mixed PSPs), the size of the PSPs and their central latencies were analyzed for each group of motoneurons to identify the neural pathways from the afferents innervating foot pads to hindlimb motoneurons. The rates of occurrence of different types of PSPs did not depend on the foot pad stimulated in PBSt, ABSm and LGS motoneurons, but for other groups of motoneurons their rates of occurrence depended on the foot pad stimulated. It was often noted that the size of PSPs in the same motoneurons differed according to the foot pad stimulated. Measurements of the central latencies of the PSPs indicated that the shortest neural pathways for EPSPs and IPSPs were disynaptic (central latencies < 1.8 ms). The functional role of neuronal pathways from afferent nerves innervating foot pads to hindlimb motoneurons could be to maintain stability of the foot during different postural and motor activities.

  15. Activation of TRPV4 Regulates Respiration through Indirect Activation of Bronchopulmonary Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Gu, Qihai (David); Moss, Charles R.; Kettelhut, Kristen L.; Gilbert, Carolyn A.; Hu, Hongzhen

    2016-01-01

    Transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor 4 (TRPV4) is a calcium-permeable non-selective cation channel implicated in numerous physiological and pathological functions. This study aimed to investigate the effect of TRPV4 activation on respiration and to explore the potential involvement of bronchopulmonary sensory neurons. Potent TRPV4 agonist GSK1016790A was injected into right atrium in anesthetized spontaneously breathing rats and the changes in breathing were measured. Patch-clamp recording was performed to investigate the effect of GSK1016790A or another TRPV4 activator 4α-PDD on cultured rat vagal bronchopulmonary sensory neurons. Immunohistochemistry was carried out to determine the TRPV4-expressing cells in lung slices obtained from TRPV4-EGFP mice. Our results showed, that right-atrial injection of GSK1016790A evoked a slow-developing, long-lasting rapid shallow breathing in anesthetized rats. Activation of TRPV4 also significantly potentiated capsaicin-evoked chemoreflex responses. The alteration in ventilation induced by GSK1016790A was abolished by cutting or perineural capsaicin treatment of both vagi, indicating the involvement of bronchopulmonary afferent neurons. The stimulating and sensitizing effects of GSK1016790A were abolished by a selective TRPV4 antagonist GSK2193874 and also by inhibiting cyclooxygenase with indomethacin. Surprising, GSK1016790A or 4α-PDD did not activate isolated bronchopulmonary sensory neurons, nor did they modulate capsaicin-induced inward currents in these neurons. Furthermore, TRPV4 expression was found in alveolar macrophages, alveolar epithelial, and vascular endothelial cells. Collectively, our results suggest that GSK1016790A regulates the respiration through an indirect activation of bronchopulmonary sensory neurons, likely via its stimulation of other TRPV4-expressing cells in the lungs and airways. PMID:26973533

  16. Electrophysiological recording from neurons controlling sensory and motor functions of the esophagus.

    PubMed

    Sengupta, J N

    2001-12-03

    Much work has been done in recent years to understand the functional roles of sensory neurons that regulate reflexes and sensations. Information about the response patterns of spinal dorsal horn and brain stem neurons associated with esophageal functions has become available by using electrophysiological techniques. These techniques allow understanding of response characteristics of neurons to various types of stimuli, neurotransmitters involved in excitation or inhibition of neurons, changes in response characteristics of neurons under pathological conditions, and the shape and size of a particular neuron in the central nervous system, as well as its projection to other areas of the brain. Response properties of primary afferent fibers in the vagus and thoracic sympathetic nerves have been studied in intact animal models by using single-fiber or extracellular microelectrode recording techniques. Recently, the single-fiber recording technique has been used in vitro in isolated esophagus-vagus nerve preparations. Recordings from the brain stem nuclei and thoracic spinal dorsal horn neurons also have examined the response characteristics of second-order neurons receiving afferent input from the esophagus. In the spinal cord, dorsal horn neurons responsive to esophageal distension also receive ipsilateral somatic input (ie, viscero-somatic convergence) from the upper thoracic area. These neurons exhibit sensitization of response after repeated noxious distension of the esophagus or instillation of irritant substances in the esophagus. In the nucleus ambiguus, neurons receiving input from the distal esophagus exhibit excitation to distension of the distal esophagus but undergo inhibition to midthoracic esophageal distension or to swallow. Neurons in the nucleus tractus solitarius receiving input from the distal esophagus exhibit 2 types of responses to proximal and distal esophageal distension. One type of response is a rhythmic firing synchronized with peristaltic

  17. Dorsal horn convergent neurones: negative feedback triggered by spatial summation of nociceptive afferents.

    PubMed

    Bouhassira, D; Gall, O; Chitour, D; Le Bars, D

    1995-08-01

    In order to investigate the effects of spatial summation on the spinal transmission of nociceptive information, we compared in intact and spinal anaesthetized rats, responses of lumbar convergent neurones elicited by noxious heat stimuli applied to areas of the body much greater in size than their individual excitatory receptive fields, located distally on the hindpaw. Twenty-four neurones were recorded in each group of animals. For each neurone, 4 successive immersions of increasing areas (1.9-18 cm2) of the ipsilateral hindpaw in a 48 degrees C water bath (15-sec duration) were performed with 10-min intervals in a randomized and balanced order. In intact animals, the responses of convergent neurones progressively decreased when the area of noxious thermal stimulation reached and then exceeded approximately twice the area of their individual excitatory receptive fields. This decrease was highly significant for 18 cm2 which represents approximately 10-fold the mean of the receptive field areas. Such a phenomenon was not observed for neurones recorded in spinal animals although their excitatory receptive field areas were not significantly different. These results suggest that the activation of a large population of nociceptive afferents triggers supraspinally mediated negative feed-back loop modulating the responses of convergent neurones.

  18. Transient receptor potential (TRP) A1 activated currents in TRPV1 and cholecystokinin-sensitive cranial visceral afferent neurons.

    PubMed

    Choi, Myung-Jin; Jin, Zhenhua; Park, Yong Seek; Rhee, Young Kyoung; Jin, Young-Ho

    2011-04-06

    Culinary use of the pungent spices has potential health benefits including a reduction in food intake. Pungent spices often contain ingredients that activate members of the transient receptor potential (TRP) family A1 and evoke pain from capsaicin-sensitive somatosensory neurons. TRPA1 channel have also been identified on cranial visceral afferent neurons but their distribution and functional contributions are poorly understood. Visceral vagal neurons transduce mechanical and chemical signals from peripheral organs to the nucleus tractus solitarii. Many capsaicin-sensitive vagal afferents participate in peripheral satiety signaling that includes cholecystokinin (CCK) sensitive neurons. To assess signaling, the TRPA1 selective agonist allyl isothiocyanate (AITC) was tested together with CCK and capsaicin (200nM), a TRPV1 specific agonist. In isolated nodose neurons, AITC (0.05-0.2mM) evoked concentration-dependent inward currents in 38% of the tested neurons. The TRPA1 specific antagonist HC-030031 (10μM) blocked AITC responses. TRPA1 responses were mixed across neurons that were capsaicin-sensitive and -insensitive. However CCK evoked inward currents only on capsaicin-sensitive neurons and 28% of the CCK-sensitive neurons expressed TRPA1. Our results indicate that TRPA1 is co-expressed with TRPV1 in CCK-sensitive nodose neurons. The findings indicate a potential mechanism by which spices can act within cranial visceral afferent pathways mediating satiety and contribute to the reduction of the food intake associated with spiced diets.

  19. Primary afferent neurons of the electrosensory system of paddlefish respond to the electrical signal of paddlefish moving prey.*

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wojtenek, Winfried; Neiman, Alexander; Moss, Frank; Wilkens, Lon

    2000-03-01

    The elongated rostrum and ampullae of Lorenzini of paddlefish (Polyodon spathula) function as an antenna for detecting electrical signals from planktonic prey (1,2). We characterize the weak electric field of the water flea (Daphnia), the natural prey of paddlefish, and the response of the electroreceptor primary afferents to the live plankton. Daphnia generate a steady DC electric field with a low-frequency AC component. The DC field is dipolar, with low-frequency AC modulations (5-10 Hz) of 10-20peak-to-peak amplitude of the steady DC electric field. Primary afferents discharge rate are briefly increased or decreased when Daphnia swept over their receptive fields. Cathodal stimulation increases the primary afferent spike rate, whereas anodal stimuli decrease neuronal activity. The pattern of neuronal discharge depend on dipole orientation and, in general, neuronal discharges follow the characteristic of moving Daphnia’s electric potentials.

  20. Receptive field properties of trigeminothalamic neurons in the rostral trigeminal sensory nuclei of cats.

    PubMed

    Ro, J Y; Capra, N F

    1994-01-01

    This study described topographic and receptive field representation in the region of the rostral trigeminal nuclei, and evaluated whether thalamic neurons from the principal sensory nucleus relay muscle afferent information to the thalamus. Extracellular single-unit activity was recorded from anesthetized cats. Units were tested for responses to natural stimuli (i.e., air bursts, brushing, light pressure, and pinch) applied to the face and oral cavity, electrical stimulation of the masseter nerve, and ramp-and-hold movements of the jaw. The receptive fields and physiological properties for 110 units were studied; we were able to verify the recording site for 96 of these units. Most of the units had discrete receptive fields in the oral cavity, skin, hair, and masseter muscle. Only 2 units received convergent inputs. Stimulation of the ipsilateral and contralateral ventroposteromedial nucleus of the thalamus was performed to identify antidromically activated units. The results showed that the dorsal principal sensory nucleus received its input primarily from the oral cavity. Most of the units (85%) that were activated by antidromic stimulation from the ipsilateral thalamus were located in this nucleus. In contrast, 82% of the units that projected to the contralateral thalamus were located in the ventral principal sensory nucleus. A complete somatotopic representation of the ipsilateral face and oral cavity was observed in the ventral principal sensory nucleus. Although 24 units had muscle receptive fields, none were activated by stimulation of the ipsilateral thalamus, and only 1 responded to stimulation of the contralateral thalamus. Most of the units that were not antidromically driven were recorded outside of the cytoarchitectural boundaries of the principal sensory nucleus. Retrograde labeling of the rostral trigeminal nuclei indicated that most of the neurons in the dorsal principal sensory nucleus projected to the ipsilateral thalamus, whereas those in the

  1. Diverse firing properties and Aβ-, Aδ-, and C-afferent inputs of small local circuit neurons in spinal lamina I.

    PubMed

    Fernandes, Elisabete C; Luz, Liliana L; Mytakhir, Oleh; Lukoyanov, Nikolai V; Szucs, Peter; Safronov, Boris V

    2016-02-01

    Spinal lamina I is a key element of the pain processing system, which integrates primary afferent input and relays it to supraspinal areas. More than 90% of neurons in this layer are local circuit neurons, whose role in the signal processing is poorly understood. We performed whole-cell recordings in a spinal cord preparation with attached dorsal roots to examine morphological features and physiological properties of small local circuit neurons (n = 47) in lamina I. Cells successfully filled with biocytin (n = 17) had fusiform (n = 10), flattened (n = 4), and multipolar (n = 3) somatodendritic morphology; their axons branched extensively and terminated in laminae I-III. Intrinsic firing properties were diverse; in addition to standard tonic (n = 16), adapting (n = 7), and delayed (n = 6) patterns, small local circuit neurons also generated rhythmic discharges (n = 6) and plateau potentials (n = 10), the latter were suppressed by the L-type Ca(2+)-channel blocker nifedipine. The neurons received monosynaptic inputs from Aδ and C afferents and could generate bursts of spikes on the root stimulation. In addition, we identified lamina I neurons (n = 7) with direct inputs from the low-threshold Aβ afferents, which could be picked up by ventral dendrites protruding to lamina III. Stimulation of afferents also evoked a disynaptic inhibition of neurons. Thus, small local circuit neurons exhibit diverse firing properties, can generate rhythmic discharges and plateau potentials, and their dendrites extending into several laminae allow broad integration of Aβ-, Aδ-, and C-afferent inputs. These properties are required for processing diverse modalities of nociceptive inputs in lamina I and may underlie spinal sensitization to pain.

  2. Wnt/Ryk signaling contributes to neuropathic pain by regulating sensory neuron excitability and spinal synaptic plasticity in rats.

    PubMed

    Liu, Su; Liu, Yue-Peng; Huang, Zhi-Jiang; Zhang, Yan-Kai; Song, Angela A; Ma, Ping-Chuan; Song, Xue-Jun

    2015-12-01

    Treating neuropathic pain continues to be a major clinical challenge and underlying mechanisms of neuropathic pain remain elusive. We have recently demonstrated that Wnt signaling, which is important in developmental processes of the nervous systems, plays critical roles in the development of neuropathic pain through the β-catenin-dependent pathway in the spinal cord and the β-catenin-independent pathway in primary sensory neurons after nerve injury. Here, we report that Wnt signaling may contribute to neuropathic pain through the atypical Wnt/Ryk signaling pathway in rats. Sciatic nerve injury causes a rapid-onset and long-lasting expression of Wnt3a, Wnt5b, and Ryk receptors in primary sensory neurons, and dorsal horn neurons and astrocytes. Spinal blocking of the Wnt/Ryk receptor signaling inhibits the induction and persistence of neuropathic pain without affecting normal pain sensitivity and locomotor activity. Blocking activation of the Ryk receptor with anti-Ryk antibody, in vivo or in vitro, greatly suppresses nerve injury-induced increased intracellular Ca and hyperexcitability of the sensory neurons, and also the enhanced plasticity of synapses between afferent C-fibers and the dorsal horn neurons, and activation of the NR2B receptor and the subsequent Ca-dependent signals CaMKII, Src, ERK, PKCγ, and CREB in sensory neurons and the spinal cord. These findings indicate a critical mechanism underlying the pathogenesis of neuropathic pain and suggest that targeting the Wnt/Ryk signaling may be an effective approach for treating neuropathic pain.

  3. Channeling satiation: a primer on the role of TRP channels in the control of glutamate release from vagal afferent neurons.

    PubMed

    Wu, Shaw-wen; Fenwick, Axel J; Peters, James H

    2014-09-01

    Obesity results from the chronic imbalance between food intake and energy expenditure. To maintain homeostasis, the brainstem nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS) integrates peripheral information from visceral organs and initiates reflex pathways that control food intake and other autonomic functions. This peripheral-to-central neural communication occurs through activation of vagal afferent neurons which converge to form the solitary tract (ST) and synapse with strong glutamatergic contacts onto NTS neurons. Vagal afferents release glutamate containing vesicles via three distinct pathways (synchronous, asynchronous, and spontaneous) providing multiple levels of control through fast synaptic neurotransmission at ST-NTS synapses. While temperature at the NTS is relatively constant, vagal afferent neurons express an array of thermosensitive ion channels named transient receptor potential (TRP) channels. Here we review the evidence that TRP channels pre-synaptically control quantal glutamate release and examine the potential roles of TRP channels in vagally mediated satiety signaling. We summarize the current literature that TRP channels contribute to asynchronous and spontaneous release of glutamate which can distinctly influence the transfer of information across the ST-NTS synapse. In other words, multiple glutamate vesicle release pathways, guided by afferent TRP channels, provide for robust while adaptive neurotransmission and expand our understanding of vagal afferent signaling.

  4. Visualizing sensory transmission between dorsal root ganglion and dorsal horn neurons in co-culture with calcium imaging.

    PubMed

    Ohshiro, Hiroyuki; Ogawa, Shinji; Shinjo, Katsuhiro

    2007-09-15

    Sensory information is conveyed to the central nervous system by primary afferent neurons within dorsal root ganglia (DRG), which synapse onto neurons of the dorsal horn of the spinal cord. This synaptic connection is central to the processing of both sensory and pain stimuli. Here, we describe a model system to monitor synaptic transmission between DRG neurons and dorsal horn neurons that is compatible with high-throughput screening. This co-culture preparation comprises DRG and dorsal horn neurons and utilizes Ca(2+) imaging with the indicator dye Fura-2 to visualize synaptic transmission. Addition of capsaicin to co-cultures stimulated DRG neurons and led to activation of dorsal horn neurons as well as increased intracellular Ca(2+) concentrations. This effect was dose-dependent and absent when DRG neurons were omitted from the culture. NMDA receptors are a critical component of synapses between DRG and dorsal horn neurons as MK-801, a use-dependent non-competitive antagonist, prevented activation of dorsal horn neurons following capsaicin treatment. This model system allows for rapid and efficient analysis of noxious stimulus-evoked Ca(2+) signal transmission and provides a new approach both for investigating synaptic transmission in the spinal cord and for screening potential analgesic compounds.

  5. Chronic recruitment of primary afferent neurons by microstimulation in the feline dorsal root ganglia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fisher, Lee E.; Ayers, Christopher A.; Ciollaro, Mattia; Ventura, Valérie; Weber, Douglas J.; Gaunt, Robert A.

    2014-06-01

    Objective. This study describes results of primary afferent neural microstimulation experiments using microelectrode arrays implanted chronically in the lumbar dorsal root ganglia (DRG) of four cats. The goal was to test the stability and selectivity of these microelectrode arrays as a potential interface for restoration of somatosensory feedback after damage to the nervous system such as amputation. Approach. A five-contact nerve-cuff electrode implanted on the sciatic nerve was used to record the antidromic compound action potential response to DRG microstimulation (2-15 µA biphasic pulses, 200 µs cathodal pulse width), and the threshold for eliciting a response was tracked over time. Recorded responses were segregated based on conduction velocity to determine thresholds for recruiting Group I and Group II/Aβ primary afferent fibers. Main results. Thresholds were initially low (5.1 ± 2.3 µA for Group I and 6.3 ± 2.0 µA for Group II/Aβ) and increased over time. Additionally the number of electrodes with thresholds less than or equal to 15 µA decreased over time. Approximately 12% of tested electrodes continued to elicit responses at 15 µA up to 26 weeks after implantation. Higher stimulation intensities (up to 30 µA) were tested in one cat at 23 weeks post-implantation yielding responses on over 20 additional electrodes. Within the first six weeks after implantation, approximately equal numbers of electrodes elicited only Group I or Group II/Aβ responses at threshold, but the relative proportion of Group II/Aβ responses decreased over time. Significance. These results suggest that it is possible to activate Group I or Group II/Aβ primary afferent fibers in isolation with penetrating microelectrode arrays implanted in the DRG, and that those responses can be elicited up to 26 weeks after implantation, although it may be difficult to achieve a consistent response day-to-day with currently available electrode technology. The DRG are compelling targets

  6. Influence of human skin injury on regeneration of sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Taherzadeh, O; Otto, W R; Anand, U; Nanchahal, J; Anand, P

    2003-06-01

    The regeneration of sensory nerve fibres is regulated by trophic factors released from their target tissue, particularly the basal epidermis, and matrix molecules. Means to modulate this response may be useful for the treatment of neuromas and painful hypertrophic scars and of sensory deficits in skin grafts and flaps. We have developed an in vitro model of sensory neuron regeneration on human skin in order to study the mechanisms of sensory dysfunction in pathological conditions. Adult rat sensory neurons were co-cultured with unfixed cryosections of normal or injured (crushed) human skin for 72 h. Neurons were immunostained for growth-associated protein-43 and the neurite lengths of neuronal cell bodies situated in various skin regions were measured. Two-way analysis of variance was performed. Neurites of sensory cell bodies on epidermis of normal skin were the shortest, with a mean +/- SEM of 75+/-10 micrometer, whereas those of cells on the dermo-epidermal junction were the longest, with a mean +/- SEM of 231+/-18 micrometer. Neurons on the dermo-epidermal junction of injured skin had significantly longer neurites than those on the same region of normal skin (mean +/- SEM = 289+/-21 micrometer). Regeneration of sensory neurons may be influenced by extracellular matrix molecules, matrix-binding growth factors and trophic factors. Altered substrate or trophic factors in injured skin may explain the increase of neurite lengths. This in vitro model may be useful for studying the molecular mechanisms of sensory recovery and the development of neuropathic pain following peripheral nerve injury.

  7. Dynamic synchronization of ongoing neuronal activity across spinal segments regulates sensory information flow.

    PubMed

    Contreras-Hernández, E; Chávez, D; Rudomin, P

    2015-05-15

    Previous studies on the correlation between spontaneous cord dorsum potentials recorded in the lumbar spinal segments of anaesthetized cats suggested the operation of a population of dorsal horn neurones that modulates, in a differential manner, transmission along pathways mediating Ib non-reciprocal postsynaptic inhibition and pathways mediating primary afferent depolarization and presynaptic inhibition. In order to gain further insight into the possible neuronal mechanisms that underlie this process, we have measured changes in the correlation between the spontaneous activity of individual dorsal horn neurones and the cord dorsum potentials associated with intermittent activation of these inhibitory pathways. We found that high levels of neuronal synchronization within the dorsal horn are associated with states of incremented activity along the pathways mediating presynaptic inhibition relative to pathways mediating Ib postsynaptic inhibition. It is suggested that ongoing changes in the patterns of functional connectivity within a distributed ensemble of dorsal horn neurones play a relevant role in the state-dependent modulation of impulse transmission along inhibitory pathways, among them those involved in the central control of sensory information. This feature would allow the same neuronal network to be involved in different functional tasks.

  8. Sensory Neuron-Specific Deletion of TRPA1 Results in Mechanical Cutaneous Sensory Deficits.

    PubMed

    Zappia, Katherine J; O'Hara, Crystal L; Moehring, Francie; Kwan, Kelvin Y; Stucky, Cheryl L

    2017-01-01

    The nonselective cation channel transient receptor potential ankyrin 1 (TRPA1) is known to be a key contributor to both somatosensation and pain. Recent studies have implicated TRPA1 in additional physiologic functions and have also suggested that TRPA1 is expressed in nonneuronal tissues. Thus, it has become necessary to resolve the importance of TRPA1 expressed in primary sensory neurons, particularly since previous research has largely used global knock-out animals and chemical TRPA1 antagonists. We therefore sought to isolate the physiological relevance of TRPA1 specifically within sensory neurons. To accomplish this, we used Advillin-Cre mice, in which the promoter for Advillin is used to drive expression of Cre recombinase specifically within sensory neurons. These Advillin-Cre mice were crossed with Trpa1(fl/fl) mice to generate sensory neuron-specific Trpa1 knock-out mice. Here, we show that tissue-specific deletion of TRPA1 from sensory neurons produced strong deficits in behavioral sensitivity to mechanical stimulation, while sensitivity to cold and heat stimuli remained intact. The mechanical sensory deficit was incomplete compared to the mechanosensory impairment of TRPA1 global knock-out mice, in line with the incomplete (∼80%) elimination of TRPA1 from sensory neurons in the tissue-specific Advillin-Cre knock-out mice. Equivalent findings were observed in tissue-specific knock-out animals originating from two independently-generated Advillin-Cre lines. As such, our results show that sensory neuron TRPA1 is required for mechanical, but not cold, responsiveness in noninjured skin.

  9. Sensory Neuron-Specific Deletion of TRPA1 Results in Mechanical Cutaneous Sensory Deficits

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    Abstract The nonselective cation channel transient receptor potential ankyrin 1 (TRPA1) is known to be a key contributor to both somatosensation and pain. Recent studies have implicated TRPA1 in additional physiologic functions and have also suggested that TRPA1 is expressed in nonneuronal tissues. Thus, it has become necessary to resolve the importance of TRPA1 expressed in primary sensory neurons, particularly since previous research has largely used global knock-out animals and chemical TRPA1 antagonists. We therefore sought to isolate the physiological relevance of TRPA1 specifically within sensory neurons. To accomplish this, we used Advillin-Cre mice, in which the promoter for Advillin is used to drive expression of Cre recombinase specifically within sensory neurons. These Advillin-Cre mice were crossed with Trpa1fl/fl mice to generate sensory neuron-specific Trpa1 knock-out mice. Here, we show that tissue-specific deletion of TRPA1 from sensory neurons produced strong deficits in behavioral sensitivity to mechanical stimulation, while sensitivity to cold and heat stimuli remained intact. The mechanical sensory deficit was incomplete compared to the mechanosensory impairment of TRPA1 global knock-out mice, in line with the incomplete (∼80%) elimination of TRPA1 from sensory neurons in the tissue-specific Advillin-Cre knock-out mice. Equivalent findings were observed in tissue-specific knock-out animals originating from two independently-generated Advillin-Cre lines. As such, our results show that sensory neuron TRPA1 is required for mechanical, but not cold, responsiveness in noninjured skin. PMID:28303259

  10. Phenotyping the Function of TRPV1-Expressing Sensory Neurons by Targeted Axonal Silencing

    PubMed Central

    Brenneis, Christian; Kistner, Katrin; Puopolo, Michelino; Segal, David; Roberson, David; Sisignano, Marco; Labocha, Sandra; Ferreirós, Nerea; Strominger, Amanda; Cobos, Enrique J.; Ghasemlou, Nader; Geisslinger, Gerd; Reeh, Peter W.; Bean, Bruce P.; Woolf, Clifford J.

    2013-01-01

    Specific somatosensations may be processed by different subsets of primary afferents. C-fibers expressing heat-sensitive TRPV1 channels are proposed, for example, to be heat but not mechanical pain detectors. To phenotype in rats the sensory function of TRPV1+ afferents, we rapidly and selectively silenced only their activity, by introducing the membrane-impermeant sodium channel blocker QX-314 into these axons via the TRPV1 channel pore. Using tandem mass spectrometry we show that upon activation with capsaicin, QX-314 selectively accumulates in the cytosol only of TRPV1-expressing cells, and not in control cells. Exposure to QX-314 and capsaicin induces in small DRG neurons a robust sodium current block within 30 s. In sciatic nerves, application of extracellular QX-314 with capsaicin persistently reduces C-fiber but not A-fiber compound action potentials and this effect does not occur in TRPV1−/− mice. Behavioral phenotyping after selectively silencing TRPV1+ sciatic nerve axons by perineural injections of QX-314 and capsaicin reveals deficits in heat and mechanical pressure but not pinprick or light touch perception. The response to intraplantar capsaicin is substantially reduced, as expected. During inflammation, silencing TRPV1+ axons abolishes heat, mechanical, and cold hyperalgesia but tactile and cold allodynia remain following peripheral nerve injury. These results indicate that TRPV1-expressing sensory neurons process particular thermal and mechanical somatosensations, and that the sensory channels activated by mechanical and cold stimuli to produce pain in naive/inflamed rats differ from those in animals after peripheral nerve injury. PMID:23283344

  11. Cytoarchitecture, neuronal composition, and entorhinal afferents of the flying fox hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Buhl, E H; Dann, J F

    1991-04-01

    In a comparative approach, the anatomical organization of the hippocampus was investigated in two species of megachiropteran bats, the grey-headed flying fox, Pteropus poliocephalus, and the little red flying fox, Pteropus scapulatus. In general, the cytoarchitectonic appearance of the flying fox hippocampus corresponded well with that of other mammals, revealing all major subdivisions. While the dentate fascia was trilaminated with a molecular layer, a granule cell layer, and a distinct polymorphic layer, the ammonic subfields were subdivided into stratum lacunosum molecular, stratum radiatum, stratum lucidum or mossy fiber layer (restricted to the CA3 region), pyramidal cell layer, and stratum oriens. In Ammon's horn, only subfields CA1, CA3, and CA3c were clearly discernible, whereas the CA2 region remained indistinct. In some cytoarchitectonic features, such as the dispersion of the pyramidal layer in CA1, the megachiropteran hippocampus resembled the corresponding region in primates. Five characteristic neuronal cell types of the megachiropteran hippocampus were studied in fixed slice preparations after intracellular injection with Lucifer Yellow. While the morphological appearance of CA3 pyramidal cells, horizontal stratum oriens cells, aspiny stellate cells, and mossy cells strongly resembled their counterparts in rodents, primates, and carnivores, granule cells showed an interesting variation from the nonprimate pattern. Like a subset of granule cells in the primate dentate gyrus, 75% of flying fox granule cells revealed 1-2 basal dendrites that ramified in the polymorphic layer. These processes are presumed to form the morphological substrate for recurrent excitation. Entorhinal afferents to Ammon's horn and the dentate fascia were revealed by employing the method of tract tracing in fixed tissue with the carbocyanine dye DiI. Similar to the rat and cat, but unlike the monkey, the entorhino-dentate projection in the flying fox is bilaminate, with medial

  12. Evidence that antidromically stimulated vagal afferents activate inhibitory neurones innervating guinea-pig trachealis.

    PubMed Central

    Canning, B J; Undem, B J

    1994-01-01

    -selective agonist, acetyl-[Arg6, Sar9, Met (O2)11]-SP(6-11), elicited oesophagus-dependent relaxations of the trachealis that were abolished by oesophagus removal. Furthermore, pretreatment with the NK1-selective antagonists, CP 96345 and CP 99994, or pretreatment with a concentration of SR 48968 that also blocks NK3 receptors, markedly attenuated relaxations elicited by stimulation of the capsaicin-sensitive vagal pathways. 6. The data are consistent with the hypothesis that relaxations elicited by stimulation of capsaicin-sensitive vagal afferents involve tachykinin-mediated activation of peripheral NANC inhibitory neurones that are in some way associated with the oesophagus. The data also indicate that airway smooth muscle tone might be regulated by peripheral reflexes initiated by activation of capsaicin-sensitive afferent fibres. PMID:7869272

  13. Modulation of the hyperpolarization-activated current (Ih) by cyclic nucleotides in guinea-pig primary afferent neurons.

    PubMed Central

    Ingram, S L; Williams, J T

    1996-01-01

    1. Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings were made from dissociated guinea-pig nodose and trigeminal ganglion neurons in culture to study second messenger mechanisms of the hyperpolarization-activated current (Ih) modulation. 2. Prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) and forskolin modulate Ih in primary afferents by shifting the activation curve in the depolarizing direction and increasing the maximum amplitude. 3. The cAMP analogues, RP-cAMP-S (an inhibitor of protein kinase A (PKA)) and SP-cAMP-S (an activator of PKA), both shifted the activation curve of Ih to more depolarized potentials and occluded the effects of forskolin. These results suggest that Ih is modulated by a direct action of the cAMP analogues. 4. Superfusion of other cyclic nucleotide analogues (8-Br-cAMP, 8-(4-chlorophenylthio)-cAMP and 8-Br-cGMP) mimicked the actions of forskolin and PGE2, but dibutyryl cGMP, 5'-AMP and adenosine had no effect on Ih. 8-Br-cAMP and 8-Br-cGMP had similar concentration response profiles, suggesting that Ih has little nucleotide selectivity. 5. The inhibitor peptide (PKI), the catalytic subunit of PKA (C subunit) and phosphatase inhibitors (microcystin and okadaic acid) had no effect on forskolin modulation of Ih. 6. These results indicate that Ih is regulated by cyclic nucleotides in sensory neurons. Positive regulation of Ih by prostaglandins produced during inflammation may lead to depolarization and facilitation of repetitive activity, and thus contribute to sensitization to painful stimuli. PMID:8730586

  14. Dicer maintains the identity and function of proprioceptive sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    O'Toole, Sean M; Ferrer, Monica M; Mekonnen, Jennifer; Zhang, Haihan; Shima, Yasuyuki; Ladle, David R; Nelson, Sacha B

    2017-03-01

    Neuronal cell identity is established during development and must be maintained throughout an animal's life (Fishell G, Heintz N. Neuron 80: 602-612, 2013). Transcription factors critical for establishing neuronal identity can be required for maintaining it (Deneris ES, Hobert O. Nat Neurosci 17: 899-907, 2014). Posttranscriptional regulation also plays an important role in neuronal differentiation (Bian S, Sun T. Mol Neurobiol 44: 359-373, 2011), but its role in maintaining cell identity is less established. To better understand how posttranscriptional regulation might contribute to cell identity, we examined the proprioceptive neurons in the dorsal root ganglion (DRG), a highly specialized sensory neuron class, with well-established properties that distinguish them from other neurons in the ganglion. By conditionally ablating Dicer in mice, using parvalbumin (Pvalb)-driven Cre recombinase, we impaired posttranscriptional regulation in the proprioceptive sensory neuron population. Knockout (KO) animals display a progressive form of ataxia at the beginning of the fourth postnatal week that is accompanied by a cell death within the DRG. Before cell loss, expression profiling shows a reduction of proprioceptor specific genes and an increased expression of nonproprioceptive genes normally enriched in other ganglion neurons. Furthermore, although central connections of these neurons are intact, the peripheral connections to the muscle are functionally impaired. Posttranscriptional regulation is therefore necessary to retain the transcriptional identity and support functional specialization of the proprioceptive sensory neurons.NEW & NOTEWORTHY We have demonstrated that selectively impairing Dicer in parvalbumin-positive neurons, which include the proprioceptors, triggers behavioral changes, a lack of muscle connectivity, and a loss of transcriptional identity as observed through RNA sequencing. These results suggest that Dicer and, most likely by extension, micro

  15. Bradykinin decreases K+ and increases Cl− conductances in vagal afferent neurones of the guinea pig

    PubMed Central

    Oh, Eun Joo; Weinreich, Daniel

    2004-01-01

    Bradykinin (BK) is an inflammatory mediator that can excite and sensitize primary afferent neurones. The nature of the ionic channels underlying the excitatory actions of BK is still incompletely understood. Using whole-cell patch-clamp recording from acutely dissociated nodose ganglion neurones (NGNs) we have examined the ionic mechanism responsible for BK's excitatory effect. Bath-applied BK (0.1 μm) depolarized the membrane potential (29 ± 3.1 mV, n = 7), evoked action potentials, and induced an inward ionic current (IBK) with two distinctive membrane conductances (gm). Initially, gm decreased; the ionic current associated with this gm had a reversal potential (Erev) value of −87 ± 1.1 mV (n = 26), a value close to EK (−89 mV). Subsequently, gm increased; the ionic current associated with this gm had an estimated Erev of 49 ± 4.3 mV (n = 23). When the second component was isolated from the first component, by replacing [K+]o with Cs+, Erev was 20 ± 4.7 mV (n = 10). Replacing external NaCl with NMDG-Cl or choline-Cl, or reducing [Ca2+]o did not significantly diminish IBK. After replacing external NaCl with sodium isethionate, Erev for the second component shifted to 56 ± 8.8 mV (n = 4), a value close to the ECl (66 mV). The second component was inhibited by intracellular BAPTA or by bath application of niflumic acid (100 μm), a Ca2+-activated Cl− channel blocker. These results suggest that the first and second components of IBK are produced by a decrease in K+ conductance and an increase in Ca2+-activated Cl− conductance, respectively. The BK-evoked Cl− conductance in NGNs may be the first demonstration of an inflammatory mediator exciting primary afferents via an anion channel. PMID:15169850

  16. [Postsynaptic reactions of cerebral cortex neurons, activated by nociceptive afferents during stimulation of the Raphe nuclei].

    PubMed

    Labakhua, T Sh; Dzhanashiia, T K; Gedevanishvili, G I; Dzhokhadze, L D; Tkemaladze, T T; Abzianidze, I V

    2012-01-01

    On cats, we studied the influence of stimulation of the Raphe nuclei (RN) on postsynaptic processes evoked in neurons of the somatosensory cortex by stimulation of nociceptive (intensive stimulation of the tooth pulp) and non-nociceptive (moderate stimulation of the ventroposteromedial--VPN--nucleus of the thalamus) afferent inputs. 6 cells, selectively excited by stimulation of nocciceptors and 9 cells, activated by both the above nociceptive and non-nociceptive influences (nociceptive and convergent neurons, respectively) were recorded intracellular. In neurons of both groups, responses to nociceptive stimulation (of sufficient intensity) looked like an EPSP-spike-IPSP (the letter of significant duration, up to 200-300 ms) compleх. Conditioning stimulation of the RN which preceded test stimulus applied to the tooth pulp or VPM nucleus by 100 to 800 ms, induced 40-60 % decrease of the IPSP amplitude only, while maхimal effect of influence, in both cases, was noted within intervals of 300-800 ms between conditioning and test stimulus. During stimulation of the RN, serotonin released via receptor and second messengers, provides postsynaptic modulation of GABAergic system, decreasing the IPSP amplitude which occurs after stimulation of both the tooth pulp and VPM thalamic nucleus. This process may be realized trough either pre- or postsynaptic mechanisms.

  17. Cytokine and Chemokine Regulation of Sensory Neuron Function

    PubMed Central

    Miller, Richard J.; Jung, Hosung; Bhangoo, Sonia K.; White, Fletcher A.

    2009-01-01

    Pain normally subserves a vital role in the survival of the organism, prompting the avoidance of situations associated with tissue damage. However, the sensation of pain can become dissociated from its normal physiological role. In conditions of neuropathic pain, spontaneous or hypersensitive pain behavior occurs in the absence of the appropriate stimuli. Our incomplete understanding of the mechanisms underlying chronic pain hypersensitivity accounts for the general ineffectiveness of currently available options for the treatment of chronic pain syndromes. Despite its complex pathophysiological nature, it is clear that neuropathic pain is associated with short- and long-term changes in the excitability of sensory neurons in the dorsal root ganglia (DRG) as well as their central connections. Recent evidence suggests that the upregulated expression of inflammatory cytokines in association with tissue damage or infection triggers the observed hyperexcitability of pain sensory neurons. The actions of inflammatory cytokines synthesized by DRG neurons and associated glial cells, as well as by astrocytes and microglia in the spinal cord, can produce changes in the excitability of nociceptive sensory neurons. These changes include rapid alterations in the properties of ion channels expressed by these neurons, as well as longer-term changes resulting from new gene transcription. In this chapter we review the diverse changes produced by inflammatory cytokines in the behavior of sensory neurons in the context of chronic pain syndromes. PMID:19655114

  18. Amplified Mechanically Gated Currents in Distinct Subsets of Myelinated Sensory Neurons following In Vivo Inflammation of Skin and Muscle.

    PubMed

    Weyer, Andy D; O'Hara, Crystal L; Stucky, Cheryl L

    2015-06-24

    Primary afferents are sensitized to mechanical stimuli following in vivo inflammation, but whether sensitization of mechanically gated ion channels contributes to this phenomenon is unknown. Here we identified two populations of murine A fiber-type sensory neurons that display markedly different responses to focal mechanical stimuli of the membrane based on their expression of calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP). Following inflammation of the hindpaw, myelinated, CGRP-positive neurons projecting to the paw skin displayed elevated mechanical currents in response to mechanical stimuli. Conversely, muscle inflammation markedly amplified mechanical currents in myelinated, CGRP-negative neurons projecting to muscle. These data show, for the first time, that mechanically gated currents are amplified following in vivo tissue inflammation, and also suggest that mechanical sensitization can occur in myelinated neurons after inflammation.

  19. Spectral mixing of rhythmic neuronal signals in sensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Ahrens, Kurt F.; Levine, Herbert; Suhl, Harry; Kleinfeld, David

    2002-01-01

    The ability to compute the difference between two frequencies depends on a nonlinear operation that mixes two periodic signals. Behavioral and psychophysical evidence suggest that such mixing is likely to occur in the mammalian nervous system as a means to compare two rhythmic sensory signals, such as occurs in human audition, and as a means to lock an intrinsic rhythm to a sensory input. However, a neurological substrate for mixing has not been identified. Here we address the issue of nonlinear mixing of neuronal activity in the vibrissa primary sensory cortex of rat, a region that receives intrinsic as well as sensory-driven rhythmic input during natural whisking. In our preparation, the intrinsic signal originates from cortical oscillations that were induced by anesthetics, and the extrinsic input is introduced by periodic stimulation of vibrissae. We observed that the local extracellular current in vibrissa primary sensory cortex contained oscillatory components at the sum and difference of the intrinsic and extrinsic frequencies. In complementary experiments, we observed that the simultaneous stimulation of contralateral and ipsilateral vibrissae at different frequencies also led to current flow at the sum and difference frequencies. We show theoretically that the relative amplitudes of the observed mixture terms can be accounted for by a threshold nonlinearity in the input–output relation of the underlying neurons. In general, our results provide a neurological substrate for the modulation and demodulation of rhythmic neuronal signals for sensory coding and feedback stabilization of motor output. PMID:12403828

  20. Rapid development of Purkinje cell excitability, functional cerebellar circuit, and afferent sensory input to cerebellum in zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Hsieh, Jui-Yi; Ulrich, Brittany; Issa, Fadi A; Wan, Jijun; Papazian, Diane M

    2014-01-01

    The zebrafish has significant advantages for studying the morphological development of the brain. However, little is known about the functional development of the zebrafish brain. We used patch clamp electrophysiology in live animals to investigate the emergence of excitability in cerebellar Purkinje cells, functional maturation of the cerebellar circuit, and establishment of sensory input to the cerebellum. Purkinje cells are born at 3 days post-fertilization (dpf). By 4 dpf, Purkinje cells spontaneously fired action potentials in an irregular pattern. By 5 dpf, the frequency and regularity of tonic firing had increased significantly and most cells fired complex spikes in response to climbing fiber activation. Our data suggest that, as in mammals, Purkinje cells are initially innervated by multiple climbing fibers that are winnowed to a single input. To probe the development of functional sensory input to the cerebellum, we investigated the response of Purkinje cells to a visual stimulus consisting of a rapid change in light intensity. At 4 dpf, sudden darkness increased the rate of tonic firing, suggesting that afferent pathways carrying visual information are already active by this stage. By 5 dpf, visual stimuli also activated climbing fibers, increasing the frequency of complex spiking. Our results indicate that the electrical properties of zebrafish and mammalian Purkinje cells are highly conserved and suggest that the same ion channels, Nav1.6 and Kv3.3, underlie spontaneous pacemaking activity. Interestingly, functional development of the cerebellum is temporally correlated with the emergence of complex, visually-guided behaviors such as prey capture. Because of the rapid formation of an electrically-active cerebellum, optical transparency, and ease of genetic manipulation, the zebrafish has great potential for functionally mapping cerebellar afferent and efferent pathways and for investigating cerebellar control of motor behavior.

  1. Neural responses from the filiform receptor neuron afferents of the wind-sensitive cercal system in three cockroach species

    PubMed Central

    Olsen, Anne C.K.; Triblehorn, Jeffrey D.

    2014-01-01

    The wind-sensitive insect cercal system is involved in many important behaviors, such as initiating terrestrial escape responses and providing sensory feedback during flight. The occurrence of these behaviors vary in cockroach species Periplaneta americana (strong terrestrial response and flight), Blaberus craniifer (weak terrestrial response and flight), and Gromphodorhina portentosa (no terrestrial response and no flight). A previous study focusing on wind-sensitive interneuron (WSI) responses demonstrated that variations in sensory processing of wind information accompany these behavioral differences. In this study, we recorded extracellurlarly from the cercal nerve to characterize filiform afferent population responses to different wind velocities to investigate how sensory processing differs across these species at the initial encoding of wind. We compared these results and responses from the WSI population to examine information transfer at the first synapse. Our main results were: 1) G portentosa had the weakest responses of the three species over the stimulus duration and possessed the smallest cerci with the least filiform hair receptors of the three species; 2) B. craniifer filiform responses were similar to or greater than P. americana responses even though B. craniifer possessed smaller cerci with less filiform hair receptors than P. americana; 3) the greater filiform afferent responses in B. craniifer, including a larger amplitude second positive peak compared to the other two species, suggest more synchronous activity between filiform afferents in this species; 4) the transfer of information at the first synapse appears to be similar in both P. americana and G. portentosa, but different in B. craniifer. PMID:25046275

  2. The role of trigeminal nasal TRPM8-expressing afferent neurons in the antitussive effects of menthol.

    PubMed

    Plevkova, J; Kollarik, M; Poliacek, I; Brozmanova, M; Surdenikova, L; Tatar, M; Mori, N; Canning, B J

    2013-07-15

    The cold-sensitive cation channel TRPM8 is a target for menthol, which is used routinely as a cough suppressant and as an additive to tobacco and food products. Given that cold temperatures and menthol activate neurons through gating of TRPM8, it is unclear how menthol actively suppresses cough. In this study we describe the antitussive effects of (-)-menthol in conscious and anesthetized guinea pigs. In anesthetized guinea pigs, cough evoked by citric acid applied topically to the tracheal mucosa was suppressed by menthol only when it was selectively administered as vapors to the upper airways. Menthol applied topically to the tracheal mucosa prior to and during citric acid application or administered continuously as vapors or as an aerosol to the lower airways was without effect on cough. These actions of upper airway menthol treatment were mimicked by cold air delivered to the upper airways but not by (+)-menthol, the inactive isomer of menthol, or by the TRPM8/TRPA1 agonist icilin administered directly to the trachea. Subsequent molecular analyses confirmed the expression of TRPM8 in a subset of nasal trigeminal afferent neurons that do not coincidently express TRPA1 or TRPV1. We conclude that menthol suppresses cough evoked in the lower airways primarily through a reflex initiated from the nose.

  3. Cracking Taste Codes by Tapping into Sensory Neuron Impulse Traffic

    PubMed Central

    Frank, Marion E.; Lundy, Robert F.; Contreras, Robert J.

    2008-01-01

    Insights into the biological basis for mammalian taste quality coding began with electrophysiological recordings from “taste” nerves and this technique continues to produce essential information today. Chorda tympani (geniculate ganglion) neurons, which are particularly involved in taste quality discrimination, are specialists or generalists. Specialists respond to stimuli characterized by a single taste quality as defined by behavioral cross-generalization in conditioned taste tests. Generalists respond to electrolytes that elicit multiple aversive qualities. Na+-salt (N) specialists in rodents and sweet-stimulus (S) specialists in multiple orders of mammals are well-characterized. Specialists are associated with species’ nutritional needs and their activation is known to be malleable by internal physiological conditions and contaminated external caloric sources. S specialists, associated with the heterodimeric G-protein coupled receptor: T1R, and N specialists, associated with the epithelial sodium channel: ENaC, are consistent with labeled line coding from taste bud to afferent neuron. Yet, S-specialist neurons and behavior are less specific thanT1R2-3 in encompassing glutamate and E generalist neurons are much less specific than a candidate, PDK TRP channel, sour receptor in encompassing salts and bitter stimuli. Specialist labeled lines for nutrients and generalist patterns for aversive electrolytes may be transmitting taste information to the brain side by side. However, specific roles of generalists in taste quality coding may be resolved by selecting stimuli and stimulus levels found in natural situations. T2Rs, participating in reflexes via the glossopharynygeal nerve, became highly diversified in mammalian phylogenesis as they evolved to deal with dangerous substances within specific environmental niches. Establishing the information afferent neurons traffic to the brain about natural taste stimuli imbedded in dynamic complex mixtures will

  4. Afferent inhibition and the functional properties of neurons in the projection zone of the whiskers in the somatosensory cortex of the cat.

    PubMed

    Aleksandrov, A A

    2000-01-01

    The effects of afferent evoked inhibition on the functional properties of neurons in the whisker projection zone were studied in the cat brain. These investigations showed that afferent inhibition produced significant changes in the receptive fields of neurons, resulting in the induction of directional sensitivity. These data provide evidence for a defined topical ordering of intracortical inhibitory interactions. It is suggested that in natural conditions, movement of an object across the whisker field, resulting in sequential stimulation of the whiskers, results in sequential tuning of the detector properties of neurons receiving afferent flows from the whiskers. This process may form part of the mechanism for recognizing the direction of stimulus movement.

  5. A sensory labeled-line for cold: TRPM8-expressing sensory neurons define the cellular basis for cold, cold pain, and cooling-mediated analgesia

    PubMed Central

    Knowlton, Wendy M.; Palkar, Radhika; Lippoldt, Erika K.; McCoy, Daniel D.; Baluch, Farhan; Chen, Jessica; McKemy, David D.

    2013-01-01

    Many primary sensory neurons are polymodal, responding to multiple stimulus modalities (chemical, thermal, or mechanical), yet each modality is recognized differently. While polymodality implies that stimulus encoding occurs in higher centers such as the spinal cord or brain, recent sensory neuron ablation studies find that behavioral responses to different modalities require distinct subpopulations, suggesting the existence of modality-specific labeled-lines at the level of the sensory afferent. Here we provide evidence that neurons expressing TRPM8, a cold- and menthol-gated channel required for normal cold responses in mammals, represents a labeled-line solely for cold sensation. We examined the behavioral significance of conditionally ablating TRPM8+ neurons in adult mice, finding that, like animals lacking TRPM8 channels (Trpm8−/−), animals depleted of TRPM8 neurons (ablated) are insensitive to cool to painfully cold temperatures. Ablated animals showed little aversion to noxious cold and did not distinguish between cold and a preferred warm temperature, a phenotype more profound than that of Trpm8−/− mice which exhibit only partial cold avoidance and preference behaviors. In addition to acute responses, cold pain associated with inflammation and nerve injury was significantly attenuated in ablated and Trpm8−/− mice. Moreover, cooling-induced analgesia after nerve injury was abolished in both genotypes. Lastly, heat, mechanical, and proprioceptive behaviors were normal in ablated mice, demonstrating that TRPM8 neurons are dispensable for other somatosensory modalities. Together these data show that while some limited cold sensitivity remains in Trpm8−/− mice, TRPM8 neurons are required for the breadth of behavioral responses evoked by cold temperatures. PMID:23407943

  6. Phenotypic switching of nonpeptidergic cutaneous sensory neurons following peripheral nerve injury.

    PubMed

    Wang, Ting; Molliver, Derek C; Jing, Xiaotang; Schwartz, Erica S; Yang, Fu-Chia; Samad, Omar Abdel; Ma, Qiufu; Davis, Brian M

    2011-01-01

    In adult mammals, the phenotype of half of all pain-sensing (nociceptive) sensory neurons is tonically modulated by growth factors in the glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) family that includes GDNF, artemin (ARTN) and neurturin (NRTN). Each family member binds a distinct GFRα family co-receptor, such that GDNF, NRTN and ARTN bind GFRα1, -α2, and -α3, respectively. Previous studies revealed transcriptional regulation of all three receptors in following axotomy, possibly in response to changes in growth factor availability. Here, we examined changes in the expression of GFRα1-3 in response to injury in vivo and in vitro. We found that after dissociation of adult sensory ganglia, up to 27% of neurons die within 4 days (d) in culture and this can be prevented by nerve growth factor (NGF), GDNF and ARTN, but not NRTN. Moreover, up-regulation of ATF3 (a marker of neuronal injury) in vitro could be prevented by NGF and ARTN, but not by GDNF or NRTN. The lack of NRTN efficacy was correlated with rapid and near-complete loss of GFRα2 immunoreactivity. By retrogradely-labeling cutaneous afferents in vivo prior to nerve cut, we demonstrated that GFRα2-positive neurons switch phenotype following injury and begin to express GFRα3 as well as the capsaicin receptor, transient receptor potential vanilloid 1(TRPV1), an important transducer of noxious stimuli. This switch was correlated with down-regulation of Runt-related transcription factor 1 (Runx1), a transcription factor that controls expression of GFRα2 and TRPV1 during development. These studies show that NRTN-responsive neurons are unique with respect to their plasticity and response to injury, and suggest that Runx1 plays an ongoing modulatory role in the adult.

  7. Primary afferent neurons express functional delta opioid receptors in inflamed skin.

    PubMed

    Brederson, Jill-Desiree; Honda, Christopher N

    2015-07-21

    Peripherally-restricted opiate compounds attenuate hyperalgesia in experimental models of inflammatory pain, but have little discernable effect on nociceptive behavior in normal animals. This suggests that activation of opioid receptors on peripheral sensory axons contributes to decreased afferent activity after injury. Previously, we reported that direct application of morphine to cutaneous receptive fields decreased mechanical and heat-evoked responses in a population of C-fiber nociceptors in inflamed skin. Consistent with reported behavioral studies, direct application of morphine had no effect on fiber activity in control skin. The aim of the present study was to determine whether mechanical responsiveness of nociceptors innervating inflamed skin was attenuated by direct activation of delta opioid receptors (DORs) on peripheral terminals. An ex vivo preparation of rat plantar skin and tibial nerve was used to examine effects of a selective DOR agonist, deltorphin II, on responsiveness of single fibers innervating inflamed skin. Electrical recordings were made eighteen hours after injection of complete Freund's adjuvant into the hindpaw. Deltorphin II produced an inhibition of the mechanical responsiveness of single fibers innervating inflamed skin; an effect blocked by the DOR-selective antagonist, naltrindole. The population of units responsive to deltorphin II was identified as consisting of C fiber mechanical nociceptors.

  8. Primary Afferent Neurons Express Functional Delta Opioid Receptors in Inflamed Skin

    PubMed Central

    Brederson, Jill-Desiree; Honda, Christopher N.

    2015-01-01

    Peripherally-restricted opiate compounds attenuate hyperalgesia in experimental models of inflammatory pain, but have little discernable effect on nociceptive behavior in normal animals. This suggests that activation of opioid receptors on peripheral sensory axons contributes to decreased afferent activity after injury. Previously, we reported that direct application of morphine to cutaneous receptive fields decreased mechanical and heat-evoked responses in a population of C-fiber nociceptors in inflamed skin. Consistent with reported behavioral studies, direct application of morphine had no effect on fiber activity in control skin. The aim of the present study was to determine whether mechanical responsiveness of nociceptors innervating inflamed skin was attenuated by direct activation of delta opioid receptors (DOR) on peripheral terminals. An ex vivo preparation of rat plantar skin and tibial nerve was used to examine effects of a selective DOR agonist, deltorphin II, on responsiveness of single fibers innervating inflamed skin. Electrical recordings were made eighteen hours after injection of complete Freund’s adjuvant into the hindpaw. Deltorphin II produced an inhibition of the mechanical responsiveness of single fibers innervating inflamed skin; an effect blocked by the DOR-selective antagonist, naltrindole. The population of units responsive to deltorphin II was identified as consisting of C fiber mechanical nociceptors. PMID:25911583

  9. Effect of genetic deletion of the vanilloid receptor TRPV1 on the expression of Substance P in sensory neurons of mice with adjuvant-induced arthritis

    PubMed Central

    Willcockson, Helen H.; Chen, Yong; Han, Ji Eun; Valtschanoff, Juli G.

    2010-01-01

    The neuropeptide Substance P (SP), expressed by nociceptive sensory afferents in joints, plays an important role in the pathogenesis of arthritis. Capsaicin causes neurons in the dorsal root ganglia (DRG) to release SP from their central and peripheral axons, suggesting a functional link between SP and the capsaicin receptor, the transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1). The expression of both TRPV1 and SP have been reported to increase in several models of arthritis but the specific involvement of TRPV1-expressing articular afferents that can release SP is not completely understood. We here wanted to ascertain whether the increase in the number of SP-positive primary afferents in arthritis may be affected by genetic deletion of TRPV1. For this, we used immunohistochemistry to quantify the expression of SP in primary afferent neurons in wild type mice (WT) vs. TRPV1-knockout (KO) mice with adjuvant-induced arthritis (AIA). We found that the expression of SP in DRG 1) increased significantly over naïve level in both WT and KO mice 3 weeks after AIA, 2) was significantly higher in KO mice than in WT mice in naïve mice and 2-3 weeks after AIA, 3) was significantly higheron the side of AIA than on the contralateral, vehicle-injected side at all time points in WT mice, but not in KO mice, and 4) increased predominantly in small-size neurons in KO mice and in small- and medium-size neurons in WT mice. Since the size distribution of SP-positive DRG neurons in arthritic TRPV1-KO mice was not significantly different from that in naïve mice, we speculate that the increased expression of SP is unlikely to reflect recruitment of A-fiber primary afferents and that the higher expression of SP in KO mice may represent a plastic change to compensate for the missing receptor in a major sensory circuit. PMID:20303589

  10. 5,6-EET Is Released upon Neuronal Activity and Induces Mechanical Pain Hypersensitivity via TRPA1 on Central Afferent Terminals

    PubMed Central

    Sisignano, Marco; Park, Chul-Kyu; Angioni, Carlo; Zhang, Dong Dong; von Hehn, Christian; Cobos, Enrique J.; Ghasemlou, Nader; Xu, Zhen-Zhong; Kumaran, Vigneswara; Lu, Ruirui; Grant, Andrew; Fischer, Michael J. M.; Schmidtko, Achim; Reeh, Peter; Ji, Ru-Rong; Woolf, Clifford J.; Geisslinger, Gerd; Scholich, Klaus; Brenneis, Christian

    2012-01-01

    Epoxyeicosatrienoic acids (EETs) are cytochrome P450-epoxygenase-derived metabolites of arachidonic acid that act as endogenous signaling molecules in multiple biological systems. Here we have investigated the specific contribution of 5,6-EET to transient receptor potential (TRP) channel activation in nociceptor neurons and its consequence for nociceptive processing. We found that, during capsaicin-induced nociception, 5,6-EET levels increased in dorsal root ganglia (DRGs) and the dorsal spinal cord, and 5,6-EET is released from activated sensory neurons in vitro. 5,6-EET potently induced a calcium flux (100 nm) in cultured DRG neurons that was completely abolished when TRPA1 was deleted or inhibited. In spinal cord slices, 5,6-EET dose dependently enhanced the frequency, but not the amplitude, of spontaneous EPSCs (sEPSCs) in lamina II neurons that also responded to mustard oil (allyl isothiocyanate), indicating a presynaptic action. Furthermore, 5,6-EET-induced enhancement of sEPSC frequency was abolished in TRPA1-null mice, suggesting that 5,6-EET presynaptically facilitated spinal cord synaptic transmission by TRPA1. Finally, in vivo intrathecal injection of 5,6-EET caused mechanical allodynia in wild-type but not TRPA1-null mice. We conclude that 5,6-EET is synthesized on the acute activation of nociceptors and can produce mechanical hypersensitivity via TRPA1 at central afferent terminals in the spinal cord. PMID:22553041

  11. Dopaminergic Modulation of the Voltage-Gated Sodium Current in the Cochlear Afferent Neurons of the Rat

    PubMed Central

    Valdés-Baizabal, Catalina; Soto, Enrique; Vega, Rosario

    2015-01-01

    The cochlear inner hair cells synapse onto type I afferent terminal dendrites, constituting the main afferent pathway for auditory information flow. This pathway receives central control input from the lateral olivocochlear efferent neurons that release various neurotransmitters, among which dopamine (DA) plays a salient role. DA receptors activation exert a protective role in the over activation of the afferent glutamatergic synapses, which occurs when an animal is exposed to intense sound stimuli or during hypoxic events. However, the mechanism of action of DA at the cellular level is still not completely understood. In this work, we studied the actions of DA and its receptor agonists and antagonists on the voltage-gated sodium current (INa) in isolated cochlear afferent neurons of the rat to define the mechanisms of dopaminergic control of the afferent input in the cochlear pathway. Experiments were performed using the voltage and current clamp techniques in the whole-cell configuration in primary cultures of cochlear spiral ganglion neurons (SGNs). Recordings of the INa showed that DA receptor activation induced a significant inhibition of the peak current amplitude, leading to a significant decrease in cell excitability. Inhibition of the INa was produced by a phosphorylation of the sodium channels as shown by the use of phosphatase inhibitor that produced an inhibition analogous to that caused by DA receptor activation. Use of specific agonists and antagonists showed that inhibitory action of DA was mediated both by activation of D1- and D2-like DA receptors. The action of the D1- and D2-like receptors was shown to be mediated by a Gαs/AC/cAMP/PKA and Gαq/PLC/PKC pathways respectively. These results showed that DA receptor activation constitutes a significant modulatory input to SGNs, effectively modulating their excitability and information flow in the auditory pathway. PMID:25768433

  12. Abeta-afferents activate neurokinin-1 receptor in dorsal horn neurons after nerve injury.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Ji-Hong; Song, Xue-Jun

    2005-05-12

    We provide new evidence demonstrating that peripheral nerve injury produces profound alterations in synaptic input to dorsal horn neurons mediated by non-nociceptive sensory neurons, and activation of neurokinin-1 receptor may be involved in the enhanced synaptic response and thus contribute to the tactile allodynia. Our results show that Abeta-fiber-evoked field potential significantly increased in the first postoperative week and decreased thereafter while maximal mechanical allodynia was exhibited. The neurokinin-1 receptor antagonist L703,606 significantly reduced Abeta-fiber-evoked field potential in nerve-injured but not in sham-operated animals. The non-N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor antagonist CNQX inhibited Abeta-fiber-evoked field potential in both nerve-injured and sham-operated rats, while the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor antagonist MK-801 did not affect Abeta-fiber-evoked field potential in either CCI or sham-operated animals.

  13. Activation of Six1 Expression in Vertebrate Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Sato, Shigeru; Yajima, Hiroshi; Furuta, Yasuhide; Ikeda, Keiko; Kawakami, Kiyoshi

    2015-01-01

    SIX1 homeodomain protein is one of the essential key regulators of sensory organ development. Six1-deficient mice lack the olfactory epithelium, vomeronasal organs, cochlea, vestibule and vestibuloacoustic ganglion, and also show poor neural differentiation in the distal part of the cranial ganglia. Simultaneous loss of both Six1 and Six4 leads to additional abnormalities such as small trigeminal ganglion and abnormal dorsal root ganglia (DRG). The aim of this study was to understand the molecular mechanism that controls Six1 expression in sensory organs, particularly in the trigeminal ganglion and DRG. To this end, we focused on the sensory ganglia-specific Six1 enhancer (Six1-8) conserved between chick and mouse. In vivo reporter assays using both animals identified an important core region comprising binding consensus sequences for several transcription factors including nuclear hormone receptors, TCF/LEF, SMAD, POU homeodomain and basic-helix-loop-helix proteins. The results provided information on upstream factors and signals potentially relevant to Six1 regulation in sensory neurons. We also report the establishment of a new transgenic mouse line (mSix1-8-NLSCre) that expresses Cre recombinase under the control of mouse Six1-8. Cre-mediated recombination was detected specifically in ISL1/2-positive sensory neurons of Six1-positive cranial sensory ganglia and DRG. The unique features of the mSix1-8-NLSCre line are the absence of Cre-mediated recombination in SOX10-positive glial cells and central nervous system and ability to induce recombination in a subset of neurons derived from the olfactory placode/epithelium. This mouse model can be potentially used to advance research on sensory development. PMID:26313368

  14. Anti-Hu antibodies activate enteric and sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Li, Qin; Michel, Klaus; Annahazi, Anita; Demir, Ihsan E.; Ceyhan, Güralp O.; Zeller, Florian; Komorowski, Lars; Stöcker, Winfried; Beyak, Michael J.; Grundy, David; Farrugia, Gianrico; De Giorgio, Roberto; Schemann, Michael

    2016-01-01

    IgG of type 1 anti-neuronal nuclear antibody (ANNA-1, anti-Hu) specificity is a serological marker of paraneoplastic neurological autoimmunity (including enteric/autonomic) usually related to small-cell lung carcinoma. We show here that IgG isolated from such sera and also affinity-purified anti-HuD label enteric neurons and cause an immediate spike discharge in enteric and visceral sensory neurons. Both labelling and activation of enteric neurons was prevented by preincubation with the HuD antigen. Activation of enteric neurons was inhibited by the nicotinic receptor antagonists hexamethonium and dihydro-β-erythroidine and reduced by the P2X antagonist pyridoxal phosphate-6-azo (benzene-2,4-disulfonic acid (PPADS) but not by the 5-HT3 antagonist tropisetron or the N-type Ca-channel blocker ω-Conotoxin GVIA. Ca++ imaging experiments confirmed activation of enteric neurons but not enteric glia. These findings demonstrate a direct excitatory action of ANNA-1, in particular anti-HuD, on visceral sensory and enteric neurons, which involves nicotinic and P2X receptors. The results provide evidence for a novel link between nerve activation and symptom generation in patients with antibody-mediated gut dysfunction. PMID:27905561

  15. Nocistatin sensitizes TRPA1 channels in peripheral sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Avenali, Luca; Abate Fulas, Oli; Sondermann, Julia; Narayanan, Pratibha; Gomez-Varela, David; Schmidt, Manuela

    2017-01-02

    The ability of sensory neurons to detect potentially harmful stimuli relies on specialized molecular signal detectors such as transient receptor potential (TRP) A1 ion channels. TRPA1 is critically implicated in vertebrate nociception and different pain states. Furthermore, TRPA1 channels are subject to extensive modulation and regulation - processes which consequently affect nociceptive signaling. Here we show that the neuropeptide Nocistatin sensitizes TRPA1-dependent calcium influx upon application of the TRPA1 agonist mustard oil (MO) in cultured sensory neurons of dorsal root ganglia (DRG). Interestingly, TRPV1-mediated cellular calcium responses are unaffected by Nocistatin. Furthermore, Nocistatin-induced TRPA1-sensitization is likely independent of the Nocistatin binding partner 4-Nitrophenylphosphatase domain and non-neuronal SNAP25-like protein homolog 1 (NIPSNAP1) as assessed by siRNA-mediated knockdown in DRG cultures. In conclusion, we uncovered the sensitization of TRPA1 by Nocistatin, which may represent a novel mechanism how Nocistatin can modulate pain.

  16. A long noncoding RNA contributes to neuropathic pain by silencing Kcna2 in primary afferent neurons

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Xiuli; Tang, Zongxiang; Zhang, Hongkang; Atianjoh, Fidelis E.; Zhao, Jian-Yuan; Liang, Lingli; Wang, Wei; Guan, Xiaowei; Kao, Sheng-Chin; Tiwari, Vinod; Gao, Yong-Jing; Hoffman, Paul N.; Cui, Hengmi; Li, Min; Dong, Xinzhong; Tao, Yuan-Xiang

    2013-01-01

    Neuropathic pain is a refractory disease characterized by maladaptive changes in gene transcription and translation within the sensory pathway. Long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) are emerging as new players in gene regulation, but how lncRNAs operate in the development of neuropathic pain is unclear. Here we identify a conserved lncRNA for Kcna2 (named Kcna2 antisense RNA) in first-order sensory neurons of rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG). Peripheral nerve injury increases Kcna2 antisense RNA expression in injured DRG through activation of myeloid zinc finger protein 1, a transcription factor that binds to Kcna2 antisense RNA gene promoter. Mimicking this increase downregulates Kcna2, reduces total Kv current, increases excitability in DRG neurons, and produces neuropathic pain symptoms. Blocking this increase reverses nerve injury-induced downregulation of DRG Kcna2 and attenuates development and maintenance of neuropathic pain. These findings suggest native Kcna2 antisense RNA as a new therapeutic target for the treatment of neuropathic pain. PMID:23792947

  17. Femoral Artery Occlusion Increases Muscle Pressor Reflex and Expression of Hypoxia-Inducible Factor-1α in Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Wei; Li, Jianhua

    2013-01-01

    Hypoxia inducible factor-1 (HIF-1) has an important contribution to pathophysiological changes of homeostasis under conditions of oxygen deprivation as well as ischemia. We examined the effects of femoral artery occlusion on HIF-1α expression in sensory dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons of rats. Also, we examined cardiovascular responses to static muscle contraction following femoral occlusion. We hypothesized that hindlimb vascular insufficiency increases the levels of sensory nerves’ HIF-1α and augments autonomic responses induced by activation of muscle afferent nerves. In addition, we examined if the reflex cardiovascular responses were altered as HIF-1α was increased in the DRG neurons. Our data show that HIF-1α was significantly increased in the lumbar DRG neurons 6, 24 and 72 hours after femoral artery ligation as compared with sham control. Administration of dimethyloxalylglycine (DMOG), a stabilizer of HIF-α, significantly increased HIF-1α in the lumbar DRG neurons. Furthermore, femoral occlusion enhanced the reflex pressor response to muscle contraction; however, the response was not altered by injection of DMOG. Overall, our results indicate that 1) femoral artery occlusion increases HIF-1α levels of in DRG neurons and contraction-induced pressor response; and 2) an increase in HIF-1α of DRG neurons per se may not alter the muscle pressor reflex. PMID:25346936

  18. Diet-induced obesity leads to the development of leptin resistance in vagal afferent neurons.

    PubMed

    de Lartigue, Guillaume; Barbier de la Serre, Claire; Espero, Elvis; Lee, Jennifer; Raybould, Helen E

    2011-07-01

    Ingestion of high-fat, high-calorie diets is associated with hyperphagia, increased body fat, and obesity. The mechanisms responsible are currently unclear; however, altered leptin signaling may be an important factor. Vagal afferent neurons (VAN) integrate signals from the gut in response to ingestion of nutrients and express leptin receptors. Therefore, we tested the hypothesis that leptin resistance occurs in VAN in response to a high-fat diet. Sprague-Dawley rats, which exhibit a bimodal distribution of body weight gain, were used after ingestion of a high-fat diet for 8 wk. Body weight, food intake, and plasma leptin levels were measured. Leptin signaling was determined by immunohistochemical localization of phosphorylated STAT3 (pSTAT3) in cultured VAN and by quantifaction of pSTAT3 protein levels by Western blot analysis in nodose ganglia and arcuate nucleus in vivo. To determine the mechanism of leptin resistance in nodose ganglia, cultured VAN were stimulated with leptin alone or with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and SOCS-3 expression measured. SOCS-3 protein levels in VAN were measured by Western blot following leptin administration in vivo. Leptin resulted in appearance of pSTAT3 in VAN of low-fat-fed rats and rats resistant to diet-induced obesity but not diet-induced obese (DIO) rats. However, leptin signaling was normal in arcuate neurons. SOCS-3 expression was increased in VAN of DIO rats. In cultured VAN, LPS increased SOCS-3 expression and inhibited leptin-induced pSTAT3 in vivo. We conclude that VAN of diet-induced obese rats become leptin resistant; LPS and SOCS-3 may play a role in the development of leptin resistance.

  19. Betahistine produces post-synaptic inhibition of the excitability of the primary afferent neurons in the vestibular endorgans.

    PubMed

    Soto, E; Chávez, H; Valli, P; Benvenuti, C; Vega, R

    2001-01-01

    Betahistine has been used to treat several vestibular disorders of both central and peripheral origin. The objective of this work was to study the action of betahistine in the vestibular endorgans. Experiments were done in wild larval axolotl (Ambystoma tigrinum). Multiunit extracellular recordings were obtained from the semicircular canal nerve using a suction electrode. Betahistine (10 microM to 10 mM; n = 32) inhibited the basal spike discharge of the vestibular afferent neurons with an IC50 of 600 microM. To define the site of action of betahistine, its interactions with the nitric oxide synthase inhibitor NG-nitro-L-arginine (3 microM) and with the cholinergic antagonists atropine (10 microM; n = 3) and d-tubocurarine (10 microM; n = 3) were studied. The action of betahistine when co-administered with these drugs was the same as that in control experiments, indicating that its effects did not include nitric oxide production or the activation of cholinergic receptors. In contrast, 0.01-1 mM betahistine reduced the excitatory action of kainic acid (10 microM; n = 6) and quiscualic acid (1 microM; n = 13). These results indicate that the action of betahistine on the spike discharge of afferent neurons seems to be due to a post-synaptic inhibitory action on the primary afferent neuron response to the hair cell neurotransmitter.

  20. Acid-sensing ion channel subtype 3 function and immunolabelling increases in skeletal muscle sensory neurons following femoral artery occlusion.

    PubMed

    Xing, Jihong; Lu, Jian; Li, Jianhua

    2012-03-01

    Sympathetic nerve activity and arterial blood pressure responses to static hindlimb muscle contractions are greater in rats with femoral arteries that were previously ligated (24-72 h earlier) than in control rats. Studies further demonstrate that acid-sensing ion channel subtype 3 (ASIC(3)) in thin-fibre muscle afferents contributes to the amplified reflex muscle responses observed in occluded rats, probably due to enhanced ASIC(3) expression in muscle sensory neurons. The purpose of this study was to characterize acid-induced current with activation of ASIC(3) in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons of control rats and rats with 24 h of femoral occlusion using whole-cell patch clamp methods. Also, immunohistochemistry was employed to examine existence of ASIC(3) expression in DRG neurons of thin-fibre afferents. DRG neurons from 4- to 6-week-old rats were labelled by injecting the fluorescence tracer DiI into the hindlimb muscles 4-5 days prior to the recording experiments. The results of this study show that ∼90% of current responses evoked by pH 6.7 in DRG neurons innervating the hindlimb muscles are ASIC(3)-like. The peak current amplitude to pH 6.7 is significantly attenuated with application of rAPETx2, a specific ASIC(3) antagonist. In addition, ASIC(3)-like current responses to pH 6.7 are observed in small, medium and large DRG neurons, and size distribution of DRG neurons is similar in control and occluded animals. However, the peak current amplitude of DRG neuron response induced by ASIC(3) stimulation is larger in occluded rats than that in control rats. Moreover, the percentage of DRG neurons with ASIC(3)-like currents is greater after arterial occlusion compared with control. Furthermore, results from double immunofluorescence experiments show that femoral artery occlusion mainly augments ASIC(3) expression within DRG neurons projecting C-fibre afferents. Taken together, these data suggest that (1) the majority of current responses to pH 6.7 are ASIC

  1. Serotonin-immunoreactive sensory neurons in the antenna of the cockroach Periplaneta americana.

    PubMed

    Watanabe, Hidehiro; Shimohigashi, Miki; Yokohari, Fumio

    2014-02-01

    The antennae of insects contain a vast array of sensory neurons that process olfactory, gustatory, mechanosensory, hygrosensory, and thermosensory information. Except those with multimodal functions, most sensory neurons use acetylcholine as a neurotransmitter. Using immunohistochemistry combined with retrograde staining of antennal sensory neurons in the cockroach Periplaneta americana, we found serotonin-immunoreactive sensory neurons in the antenna. These were selectively distributed in chaetic and scolopidial sensilla and in the scape, the pedicel, and first 15 segments of the flagellum. In a chaetic sensillum, A single serotonin-immunoreactive sensory neuron cohabited with up to four serotonin-negative sensory neurons. Based on their morphological features, serotonin-immunopositive and -negative sensory neurons might process mechanosensory and contact chemosensory modalities, respectively. Scolopidial sensilla constitute the chordotonal and Johnston's organs within the pedicel and process antennal vibrations. Immunoelectron microscopy clearly revealed that serotonin-immunoreactivities selectively localize to a specific type of mechanosensory neuron, called type 1 sensory neuron. In a chordotonal scolopidial sensillum, a serotonin-immunoreactive type 1 neuron always paired with a serotonin-negative type 1 neuron. Conversely, serotonin-immunopositive and -negative type 1 neurons were randomly distributed in Johnston's organ. In the deutocerebrum, serotonin-immunoreactive sensory neuron axons formed three different sensory tracts and those from distinct types of sensilla terminated in distinct brain regions. Our findings indicate that a biogenic amine, serotonin, may act as a neurotransmitter in peripheral mechanosensory neurons.

  2. Origin and central projections of rat dorsal penile nerve: possible direct projection to autonomic and somatic neurons by primary afferents of nonmuscle origin.

    PubMed

    Núñez, R; Gross, G H; Sachs, B D

    1986-05-22

    Cell number, size, and somatotopic arrangement within the spinal ganglia of the cells of origin of the rat dorsal penile nerve (DPN), and their spinal cord projections, were studied by loading the proximal stump of the severed DPN with horseradish peroxidase (HRP). The DPN sensory cells were located entirely in the sixth lumbar (L6) dorsal root ganglia (DRG), in which a mean of 468 +/- 78 cells per side were observed, measuring 26.7 +/- 0.8 microns in their longest axis (range 10-65 microns) and distributed apparently randomly within the ganglia. Within the spinal cord, no retrograde label was found, i.e., no motoneurons were labeled, indicating that in the rat the DPN is formed exclusively of sensory nerve fibers. Although labeled fibers entered the cord only through L6, transganglionically transported HRP was evident in all spinal segments examined, i.e., T13-S2. Labeled fibers projected along the inner edge of the dorsal horn (medial pathway) throughout their extensive craniosacral distribution. However, laminar distribution varied with spinal segment. In the dorsal horn, terminals or preterminal axons were found in the dorsal horn marginal zone (lamina I), the substantia gelatinosa (lamina II), the nucleus proprius (laminae III and IV--the most consistent projection), Clarke's column (lamina VI), and the dorsal gray commissure. In the ventral horn, terminals were found in lamina VII and lamina IX. Label apposed to cell somas and dendrites in lamina VII may represent direct primary afferent projections onto sympathetic autonomic neurons. In lamina IX, labeled terminals delineated the somas and dendrites of cells that appeared to be motoneurons. This is the first description of an apparently monosynaptic contact onto motoneurons by a primary afferent of nonmuscle origin.

  3. Differential fear conditioning induces reciprocal changes in the sensory responses of lateral amygdala neurons to the CS(+) and CS(-).

    PubMed

    Collins, D R; Paré, D

    2000-01-01

    In classical fear conditioning, a neutral sensory stimulus (CS) acquires the ability to elicit fear responses after pairing to a noxious unconditioned stimulus (US). As amygdala lesions prevent the acquisition of fear responses and the lateral amygdaloid (LA) nucleus is the main input station of the amygdala for auditory afferents, the effect of auditory fear conditioning on the sensory responsiveness of LA neurons has been examined. Although conditioning was shown to increase CS-evoked LA responses, the specificity of the changes in responsiveness was not tested. Because conditioning might induce nonspecific increases in LA responses to auditory afferents, we re-examined this issue in conscious, head-restrained cats using a differential conditioning paradigm where only one of two tones (CS(+) but not CS(-)) was paired to the US. Differential conditioning increased unit and field responses to the CS(+), whereas responses to the CS(-) decreased. Such changes have never been observed in the amygdala except in cases where the CS(-) had been paired to the US before and fear responses not extinguished. This suggests that fear conditioning is not only accompanied by potentiation of amygdalopetal pathways conveying the CS(+) but also by the depression of sensory inputs unpaired to noxious stimuli.

  4. Miniature EPSPs and sensory encoding in the primary afferents of the vestibular lagena of the toadfish, Opsanus tau

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Locke, R.; Vautrin, J.; Highstein, S.

    1999-01-01

    The synaptic activity transmitted from vestibular hair cells of the lagena to primary afferent neurons was recorded in vitro using sharp, intracellular microelectrodes. At rest, the activity was composed of miniature excitatory postsynaptic potentials (mEPSPs) at frequencies from 5 to 20/s and action potentials (APs) at frequencies betwen 0 and 10/s. mEPSPs recorded from a single fiber displayed a large variability. For mEPSPs not triggering APs, amplitudes exhibited an average coefficient of variance (CV) of 0.323 and rise times an average CV of 0.516. APs were only triggered by mEPSPs with larger amplitudes (estimated 4-6 mV) and/or steeper maximum rate of rise (10.9 mV/ms, +/- 3.7 SD, n=4 experiments) compared to (3.50 mV/ms, +/-0.07 SD, n=6 experiments) for nontriggering mEPSPs. The smallest mEPSPs showed a fast rise time (0.99 ms between 10% and 90% of peak amplitude) and limited variability across fibers (CV:0.18) confirming that they were not attenuated signals, but rather represented single-transmitter discharges (TDs). The mEPSP amplitude and rise-time relationship suggests that many mEPSPs represented several, rather than a single pulse of secretion of TDs. According to the estimated overall TD frequency, the coincidence of TDs contributing to the same mEPSP were not statistically independent, indicating a positive interaction between TDs that is reminiscent of the way subminiature signals group to form miniature signals at the neuromuscular junction. Depending on the duration and intensity of efferent stimulation, a complete block of AP initiation occurred either immediately or after a delay of a few seconds. Efferent stimulation did not significantly change AP threshold level, but abruptly decreased mEPSP frequency to a near-complete block that followed the block of APs. Maximum mEPSP rate of rise decreased during, and recovered progressively after, efferent stimulation. After termination of efferent stimulation, mEPSP amplitude did not recover

  5. Role of calcium ions in the positive interaction between TRPA1 and TRPV1 channels in bronchopulmonary sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Hsu, Chun-Chun; Lee, Lu-Yuan

    2015-06-15

    Both transient receptor potential ankyrin 1 (TRPA1) and vanilloid 1 (TRPV1) receptors are abundantly expressed in bronchopulmonary C-fiber sensory nerves and can be activated by a number of endogenous inflammatory mediators. A recent study has reported a synergistic effect of simultaneous TRPA1 and TRPV1 activations in vagal pulmonary C-fiber afferents in anesthetized rats, but its underlying mechanism was not known. This study aimed to characterize a possible interaction between these two TRP channels and to investigate the potential role of Ca(2+) as a mediator of this interaction in isolated rat vagal pulmonary sensory neurons. Using the perforated patch-clamp recording technique, our study demonstrated a distinct positive interaction occurring abruptly between TRPA1 and TRPV1 when they were activated simultaneously by their respective agonists, capsaicin (Cap) and allyl isothiocyanate (AITC), at near-threshold concentrations in these neurons. AITC at this low concentration evoked only minimal or undetectable responses, but it markedly amplified the Cap-evoked current in the same neurons. This potentiating effect was eliminated when either AITC or Cap was replaced by non-TRPA1 and non-TRPV1 chemical activators of these neurons, demonstrating the selectivity of the interaction between these two TRP channels. Furthermore, when Ca(2+) was removed from the extracellular solution, the synergistic effect of Cap and AITC on pulmonary sensory neurons was completely abrogated, clearly indicating a critical role of Ca(2+) in mediating the action. These results suggest that this TRPA1-TRPV1 interaction may play a part in regulating the sensitivity of pulmonary sensory neurons during airway inflammatory reaction.

  6. Basing perceptual decisions on the most informative sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Scolari, Miranda; Serences, John T

    2010-10-01

    Single unit recording studies show that perceptual decisions are often based on the output of sensory neurons that are maximally responsive (or "tuned") to relevant stimulus features. However, when performing a difficult discrimination between two highly similar stimuli, perceptual decisions should instead be based on the activity of neurons tuned away from the relevant feature (off-channel neurons) as these neurons undergo a larger firing rate change and are thus more informative. To test this hypothesis, we measured feature-selective responses in human primary visual cortex (V1) using functional magnetic resonance imaging and show that the degree of off-channel activation predicts performance on a difficult visual discrimination task. Moreover, this predictive relationship between off-channel activation and perceptual acuity is not simply the result of extensive practice with a specific stimulus feature (as in studies of perceptual learning). Instead, relying on the output of the most informative sensory neurons may represent a general, and optimal, strategy for efficiently computing perceptual decisions.

  7. Stimulation of renal afferent fibers leads to activation of catecholaminergic and non-catecholaminergic neurons in the medulla oblongata.

    PubMed

    Nishi, Erika E; Martins, Beatriz S; Milanez, Maycon I O; Lopes, Nathalia R; de Melo, Jose F; Pontes, Roberto B; Girardi, Adriana C; Campos, Ruy R; Bergamaschi, Cássia T

    2017-01-19

    Presympathetic neurons in the rostral ventrolateral medulla (RVLM) including the adrenergic cell groups play a major role in the modulation of several reflexes required for the control of sympathetic vasomotor tone and blood pressure (BP). Moreover, sympathetic vasomotor drive to the kidneys influence natriuresis and diuresis by inhibiting the cAMP/PKA pathway and redistributing the Na(+)/H(+) exchanger isoform 3 (NHE3) to the body of the microvilli in the proximal tubules. In this study we aimed to evaluate the effects of renal afferents stimulation on (1) the neurochemical phenotype of Fos expressing neurons in the medulla oblongata and (2) the level of abundance and phosphorylation of NHE3 in the renal cortex. We found that electrical stimulation of renal afferents increased heart rate and BP transiently and caused activation of tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)-containing neurons in the RVLM and non-TH neurons in the NTS. Additionally, activation of the inhibitory renorenal reflex over a 30-min period resulted in increased natriuresis and diuresis associated with increased phosphorylation of NHE3 at serine 552, a surrogate for reduced activity of this exchanger, in the contralateral kidney. This effect was not dependent of BP changes considering that no effects on natriuresis or diuresis were found in the ipsilateral-stimulated kidney. Therefore, our data show that renal afferents leads to activation of catecholaminergic and non-catecholaminergic neurons in the medulla oblongata. When renorenal reflex is induced, NHE3 exchanger activity appears to be decreased, resulting in decreased sodium and water reabsorption in the contralateral kidney.

  8. Sensory deprivation disrupts homeostatic regeneration of newly generated olfactory sensory neurons after injury in adult mice.

    PubMed

    Kikuta, Shu; Sakamoto, Takashi; Nagayama, Shin; Kanaya, Kaori; Kinoshita, Makoto; Kondo, Kenji; Tsunoda, Koichi; Mori, Kensaku; Yamasoba, Tatsuya

    2015-02-11

    Although it is well known that injury induces the generation of a substantial number of new olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs) in the adult olfactory epithelium (OE), it is not well understood whether olfactory sensory input influences the survival and maturation of these injury-induced OSNs in adults. Here, we investigated whether olfactory sensory deprivation affected the dynamic incorporation of newly generated OSNs 3, 7, 14, and 28 d after injury in adult mice. Mice were unilaterally deprived of olfactory sensory input by inserting a silicone tube into their nostrils. Methimazole, an olfactotoxic drug, was also injected intraperitoneally to bilaterally ablate OSNs. The OE was restored to its preinjury condition with new OSNs by day 28. No significant differences in the numbers of olfactory marker protein-positive mature OSNs or apoptotic OSNs were observed between the deprived and nondeprived sides 0-7 d after injury. However, between days 7 and 28, the sensory-deprived side showed markedly fewer OSNs and mature OSNs, but more apoptotic OSNs, than the nondeprived side. Intrinsic functional imaging of the dorsal surface of the olfactory bulb at day 28 revealed that responses to odor stimulation were weaker in the deprived side compared with those in the nondeprived side. Furthermore, prevention of cell death in new neurons 7-14 d after injury promoted the recovery of the OE. These results indicate that, in the adult OE, sensory deprivation disrupts compensatory OSN regeneration after injury and that newly generated OSNs have a critical time window for sensory-input-dependent survival 7-14 d after injury.

  9. Tiling of the Drosophila epidermis by multidendritic sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Grueber, Wesley B; Jan, Lily Y; Jan, Yuh Nung

    2002-06-01

    Insect dendritic arborization (da) neurons provide an opportunity to examine how diverse dendrite morphologies and dendritic territories are established during development. We have examined the morphologies of Drosophila da neurons by using the MARCM (mosaic analysis with a repressible cell marker) system. We show that each of the 15 neurons per abdominal hemisegment spread dendrites to characteristic regions of the epidermis. We place these neurons into four distinct morphological classes distinguished primarily by their dendrite branching complexities. Some class assignments correlate with known proneural gene requirements as well as with central axonal projections. Our data indicate that cells within two morphological classes partition the body wall into distinct, non-overlapping territorial domains and thus are organized as separate tiled sensory systems. The dendritic domains of cells in different classes, by contrast, can overlap extensively. We have examined the cell-autonomous roles of starry night (stan) (also known as flamingo (fmi)) and sequoia (seq) in tiling. Neurons with these genes mutated generally terminate their dendritic fields at normal locations at the lateral margin and segment border, where they meet or approach the like dendrites of adjacent neurons. However, stan mutant neurons occasionally send sparsely branched processes beyond these territories that could potentially mix with adjacent like dendrites. Together, our data suggest that widespread tiling of the larval body wall involves interactions between growing dendritic processes and as yet unidentified signals that allow avoidance by like dendrites.

  10. Up-regulation of brain-derived neurotrophic factor is regulated by extracellular signal-regulated protein kinase 5 and by nerve growth factor retrograde signaling in colonic afferent neurons in colitis

    PubMed Central

    Yu, Sharon J; Grider, John R; Gulick, Melisa A; Xia, Chun-mei; Shen, Shanwei; Qiao, Li-Ya

    2012-01-01

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) plays an essential role in sensory neuronal activation in response to visceral inflammation. Here we report that BDNF up-regulation in the primary afferent neurons in the dorsal root ganglia (DRG) in a rat model of colitis is mediated by the activation of endogenous extracellular signal-regulated protein kinases (ERK) 5 and by nerve growth factor (NGF) retrograde signaling. At 7 days of colitis, the expression level of BDNF is increased in conventional neuronal tracing dye Fast Blue labeled primary afferent neurons project to the distal colon. In these neurons, the phosphorylation (activation) level of ERK5 is also increased. In contrast, the level of phospho-ERK1/2 is not changed in the DRG during colitis. Prevention of the ERK5 activation in vivo with an intrathecal application of the MEK inhibitor PD98059 significantly attenuates the colitis-induced increases in BDNF expression in the DRG. Further studies show that BDNF up-regulation in the DRG is triggered by NGF retrograde signaling which also involves activation of the MEK/ERK pathways. Application of exogenous NGF exclusively to the compartment containing DRG nerve terminals in an ex vivo ganglia-nerve preparation has markedly increased the BDNF expression level in the DRG neuronal cell body that is placed in a different compartment; this BDNF elevation is attenuated by U0126, PD98059 and a specific ERK5 inhibitor BIX02188. These results demonstrate the mechanisms and pathways by which BDNF expression is elevated in primary sensory neurons following visceral inflammation that is mediated by increased activity of ERK5 and is likely to be triggered by the elevated NGF level in the inflamed viscera. PMID:22921460

  11. Ultrastructural evidence for synaptic contacts between cortical noradrenergic afferents and endocannabinoid-synthesizing post-synaptic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Reyes, Beverly A. S.; Heldt, Nathan A.; Mackie, Ken; Van Bockstaele, Elisabeth J.

    2015-01-01

    Endocannabinoids (eCBs) are involved in a myriad of physiological processes that are mediated through the activation of cannabinoid receptors, which are ubiquitously distributed within the nervous system. One neurochemical target at which cannabinoids interact to have global effects on behavior is brain noradrenergic circuitry. We, and others, have previously shown that CB type 1 receptors (CB1r) are positioned to pre-synaptically modulate norepinephrine (NE) release in the rat frontal cortex (FC). Diacylglycerol lipase (DGL) is a key enzyme in the biosynthesis of the endocannabinoid 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG). While DGL-α is expressed in the FC in the rat brain, it is not known whether noradrenergic afferents target neurons expressing synthesizing enzymes for the endocannabinoid, 2-AG. In the present study, we employed high-resolution neuroanatomical approaches to better define cellular sites for interactions between noradrenergic afferents and FC neurons expressing DGL-α. Immunofluorescence microscopy showed close appositions between processes containing the norepinephrine transporter (NET) or dopamine-β-hydroxylase (DβH) and cortical neurons expressing DGL-α-immunoreactivity. Ultrastructural analysis using immunogold-silver labeling for DGL-α and immunoperoxidase labeling for NET or DβH confirmed that NET-labeled axon terminals were directly apposed to FC somata and dendritic processes that exhibited DGL-α-immunoreactivity. Finally, tissue sections were processed for immunohistochemical detection of DGL-α , CB1r and DβH. Triple label immunofluorescence revealed that CB1r and DβH were co-localized in common cellular profiles and these were in close association with DGL-α. Taken together, these data provide anatomical evidence for direct synaptic associations between noradrenergic afferents and cortical neurons exhibiting endocannabinoid synthesizing machinery. PMID:26162236

  12. Perineural capsaicin induces the uptake and transganglionic transport of choleratoxin B subunit by nociceptive C-fiber primary afferent neurons.

    PubMed

    Oszlács, O; Jancsó, G; Kis, G; Dux, M; Sántha, P

    2015-12-17

    The distribution of spinal primary afferent terminals labeled transganglionically with the choleratoxin B subunit (CTB) or its conjugates changes profoundly after perineural treatment with capsaicin. Injection of CTB conjugated with horseradish peroxidase (HRP) into an intact nerve labels somatotopically related areas in the ipsilateral dorsal horn with the exceptions of the marginal zone and the substantia gelatinosa, whereas injection of this tracer into a capsaicin-pretreated nerve also results in massive labeling of these most superficial layers of the dorsal horn. The present study was initiated to clarify the role of C-fiber primary afferent neurons in this phenomenon. In L5 dorsal root ganglia, analysis of the size frequency distribution of neurons labeled after injection of CTB-HRP into the ipsilateral sciatic nerve treated previously with capsaicin or resiniferatoxin revealed a significant increase in the proportion of small neurons. In the spinal dorsal horn, capsaicin or resiniferatoxin pretreatment resulted in intense CTB-HRP labeling of the marginal zone and the substantia gelatinosa. Electron microscopic histochemistry disclosed a dramatic, ∼10-fold increase in the proportion of CTB-HRP-labeled unmyelinated dorsal root axons following perineural capsaicin or resiniferatoxin. The present results indicate that CTB-HRP labeling of C-fiber dorsal root ganglion neurons and their central terminals after perineural treatment with vanilloid compounds may be explained by their phenotypic switch rather than a sprouting response of thick myelinated spinal afferents which, in an intact nerve, can be labeled selectively with CTB-HRP. The findings also suggest a role for GM1 ganglioside in the modulation of nociceptor function and pain.

  13. Photostimulation of sensory neurons of the rat vagus nerve

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rhee, Albert Y.; Li, Gong; Wells, Jonathon; Kao, Joseph P. Y.

    2008-02-01

    We studied the effect of infrared (IR) stimulation on rat sensory neurons. Primary sensory neurons were prepared by enzymatic dissociation of the inferior (or "nodose") ganglia from the vagus nerves of rats. The 1.85-μm output of a diode laser, delivered through a 200-μm silica fiber, was used for photostimulation. Nodose neurons express the vanilloid receptor, TRPV1, which is a non-selective cation channel that opens in response to significant temperature jumps above 37 C. Opening TRPV1 channels allows entry of cations, including calcium (Ca 2+), into the cell to cause membrane depolarization. Therefore, to monitor TRPV1 activation consequent to photostimulation, we used fura-2, a fluorescent Ca 2+ indicator, to monitor the rise in intracellular Ca 2+ concentration ([Ca 2+]i). Brief trains of 2-msec IR pulses activated TRPV1 rapidly and reversibly, as evidenced by transient rises in [Ca 2+]i (referred to as Ca 2+ transients). Consistent with the Ca 2+ transients arising from influx of Ca 2+, identical photostimulation failed to evoke Ca 2+ responses in the absence of extracellular Ca 2+. Furthermore, the photo-induced Ca 2+ signals were abolished by capsazepine, a specific blocker of TRPV1, indicating that the responses were indeed mediated by TRPV1. We discuss the feasibility of using focal IR stimulation to probe neuronal circuit properties in intact neural tissue, and compare IR stimulation with another photostimulation technique-focal photolytic release of "caged" molecules.

  14. Bacteria activate sensory neurons that modulate pain and inflammation

    PubMed Central

    Chiu, Isaac M.; Heesters, Balthasar A.; Ghasemlou, Nader; Von Hehn, Christian A.; Zhao, Fan; Tran, Johnathan; Wainger, Brian; Strominger, Amanda; Muralidharan, Sriya; Horswill, Alexander R.; Wardenburg, Juliane Bubeck; Hwang, Sun Wook; Carroll, Michael C.; Woolf, Clifford J.

    2013-01-01

    Summary Nociceptor sensory neurons are specialized to detect potentially damaging stimuli, protecting the organism by initiating the sensation of pain and eliciting defensive behaviors. Bacterial infections produce pain by unknown molecular mechanisms, although they are presumed secondary to immune activation. Here we demonstrate that bacteria directly activate nociceptors, and that the immune response mediated through TLR2, MyD88, T cells, B cells, and neutrophils/monocytes is not necessary for Staphylococcus aureus induced pain in mice. Mechanical and thermal hyperalgesia parallels live bacterial load rather than tissue swelling or immune activation. Bacteria induce calcium flux and action potentials in nociceptor neurons, in part via bacterial N-formylated peptides and the pore-forming toxin alpha-hemolysin through distinct mechanisms. Specific ablation of Nav1.8-lineage neurons, which include nociceptors, abrogated pain during bacterial infection, but concurrently increased local immune infiltration and lymphadenopathy of the draining lymph node. Thus, bacterial pathogens produce pain by directly activating sensory neurons that modulate inflammation, an unsuspected role for the nervous system in host-pathogen interactions. PMID:23965627

  15. [Pathophysiology of sensory ataxic neuropathy].

    PubMed

    Sobue, G

    1996-12-01

    The main lesions of sensory ataxic neuropathy such as chronic idiopathic sensory ataxic neuropathy, (ISAN), carcinomatous neuropathy, Sjögren syndrome-associated neuropathy and acute autonomic and sensory neuropathy (AASN) are the large-diameter sensory neurons and dosal column of the spinal cord and the large myelinated fibers in the peripheral nerve trunks. In addition, afferent fibers to the Clarke's nuclei are also severely involved, suggesting Ia fibers being involved in these neuropathies. In NT-3 knockout mouse, an animal model of sensory ataxia, large-sized la neurons as well as muscle spindle and Golgi tendon organs are depleted, and are causative for sensory ataxia. Thus, the proprioceptive Ia neurons would play a role in pathogenesis of sensory ataxia in human sensory ataxic neuropathies, but the significance of dorsal column involvement in human sensory ataxia is still needed to evaluate.

  16. Making sense of the sensory regulation of hunger neurons.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yiming; Knight, Zachary A

    2016-04-01

    AgRP and POMC neurons are two key cell types that regulate feeding in response to hormones and nutrients. Recently, it was discovered that these neurons are also rapidly modulated by the mere sight and smell of food. This rapid sensory regulation "resets" the activity of AgRP and POMC neurons before a single bite of food has been consumed. This surprising and counterintuitive discovery challenges longstanding assumptions about the function and regulation of these cells. Here we review these recent findings and discuss their implications for our understanding of feeding behavior. We propose several alternative hypotheses for how these new observations might be integrated into a revised model of the feeding circuit, and also highlight some of the key questions that remain to be answered.

  17. Identification of motor neurons and a mechanosensitive sensory neuron in the defecation circuitry of Drosophila larvae.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Wei; Yan, Zhiqiang; Li, Bingxue; Jan, Lily Yeh; Jan, Yuh Nung

    2014-10-30

    Defecation allows the body to eliminate waste, an essential step in food processing for animal survival. In contrast to the extensive studies of feeding, its obligate counterpart, defecation, has received much less attention until recently. In this study, we report our characterizations of the defecation behavior of Drosophila larvae and its neural basis. Drosophila larvae display defecation cycles of stereotypic frequency, involving sequential contraction of hindgut and anal sphincter. The defecation behavior requires two groups of motor neurons that innervate hindgut and anal sphincter, respectively, and can excite gut muscles directly. These two groups of motor neurons fire sequentially with the same periodicity as the defecation behavior, as revealed by in vivo Ca(2+) imaging. Moreover, we identified a single mechanosensitive sensory neuron that innervates the anal slit and senses the opening of the intestine terminus. This anus sensory neuron relies on the TRP channel NOMPC but not on INACTIVE, NANCHUNG, or PIEZO for mechanotransduction.

  18. Colitis elicits differential changes in the expression levels of receptor tyrosine kinase TrkA and TrkB in colonic afferent neurons: A possible involvement of axonal transport

    PubMed Central

    Qiao, Li-Ya; Grider, John R

    2010-01-01

    The role of nerve growth factor (NGF) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in colitis-induced hypersensitivity has been suggested. NGF and BDNF facilitate cellular physiology through binding to receptor tyrosine kinase TrkA and TrkB respectively. The present study by examining the mRNA and/or protein levels of TrkA and TrkB in the distal colon and in colonic primary afferent neurons in the dorsal root ganglia (DRG) during colitis demonstrated that colitis elicited location-specific changes in the mRNA and protein levels of TrkA and TrkB in colonic primary sensory pathways. In colitis both the TrkA and TrkB protein levels were increased in the L1 and S1 DRGs in a time-dependent manner; however, the level of TrkB mRNA but not TrkA mRNA was increased in these DRGs. Further experiments showed that colitis facilitated a retrograde transport of TrkA protein toward and an anterograde transport of TrkA mRNA away from the DRG, which may contribute to the increased TrkA mRNA level in the distal colon during colitis. Colitis also increased the level of NGF mRNA but not BDNF mRNA in the distal colon. Double staining showed that the expression of TrkA but not TrkB was increased in the specifically labeled colonic afferent neurons in the L1 and S1 DRGs during colitis; this increase in TrkA level was attenuated by pretreatment with resiniferatoxin. These results suggested that colitis-induced primary afferent activation involved retrograde transport of TrkA but not TrkB from the distal colon to primary afferent neurons in DRG. PMID:20638179

  19. Epibranchial placode-derived neurons produce BDNF required for early sensory neuron development.

    PubMed

    Harlow, Danielle E; Yang, Hui; Williams, Trevor; Barlow, Linda A

    2011-02-01

    In mice, BDNF provided by the developing taste epithelium is required for gustatory neuron survival following target innervation. However, we find that expression of BDNF, as detected by BDNF-driven β-galactosidase, begins in the cranial ganglia before its expression in the central (hindbrain) or peripheral (taste papillae) targets of these sensory neurons, and before gustatory ganglion cells innervate either target. To test early BDNF function, we examined the ganglia of bdnf null mice before target innervation, and found that while initial neuron survival is unaltered, early neuron development is disrupted. In addition, fate mapping analysis in mice demonstrates that murine cranial ganglia arise from two embryonic populations, i.e., epibranchial placodes and neural crest, as has been described for these ganglia in non-mammalian vertebrates. Only placodal neurons produce BDNF, however, which indicates that prior to innervation, early ganglionic BDNF produced by placode-derived cells promotes gustatory neuron development.

  20. Oncostatin M induces heat hypersensitivity by gp130-dependent sensitization of TRPV1 in sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Langeslag, Michiel; Constantin, Cristina E; Andratsch, Manfred; Quarta, Serena; Mair, Norbert; Kress, Michaela

    2011-12-23

    Oncostatin M (OSM) is a member of the interleukin-6 cytokine family and regulates eg. gene activation, cell survival, proliferation and differentiation. OSM binds to a receptor complex consisting of the ubiquitously expressed signal transducer gp130 and the ligand binding OSM receptor subunit, which is expressed on a specific subset of primary afferent neurons. In the present study, the effect of OSM on heat nociception was investigated in nociceptor-specific gp130 knock-out (SNS-gp130-/-) and gp130 floxed (gp130fl/fl) mice.Subcutaneous injection of pathophysiologically relevant concentrations of OSM into the hind-paw of C57BL6J wild type mice significantly reduced paw withdrawal latencies to heat stimulation. In contrast to gp130fl/fl mice, OSM did not induce heat hypersensitivity in vivo in SNS-gp130-/- mice. OSM applied at the receptive fields of sensory neurons in in vitro skin-nerve preparations showed that OSM significantly increased the discharge rate during a standard ramp-shaped heat stimulus. The capsaicin- and heat-sensitive ion channel TRPV1, expressed on a subpopulation of nociceptive neurons, has been shown to play an important role in inflammation-induced heat hypersensitivity. Stimulation of cultured dorsal root ganglion neurons with OSM resulted in potentiation of capsaicin induced ionic currents. In line with these recordings, mice with a null mutation of the TRPV1 gene did not show any signs of OSM-induced heat hypersensitivity in vivo.The present data suggest that OSM induces thermal hypersensitivity by directly sensitizing nociceptors via OSMR-gp130 receptor mediated potentiation of TRPV1.

  1. NERVE GROWTH FACTOR MAINTAINS POTASSIUM CONDUCTANCE AFTER NERVE INJURY IN ADULT CUTANEOUS AFFERENT DORSAL ROOT GANGLION NEURONS

    PubMed Central

    EVERILL, B.; KOCSIS, J. D.

    2008-01-01

    Whole-cell patch-clamp techniques were used to study the effects of nerve growth factor on voltage-dependent potassium conductance in normal and axotomized identified large cutaneous afferent dorsal root ganglion neurons (48–50 μm diameter) many of which probably give rise to myelinated Aβ fibers. K-currents were isolated by blocking Na- and Ca-currents with appropriate ion replacement and channel blockers. Separation of current components was achieved on the basis of response to variation in conditioning voltage. Cutaneous afferents were labeled by the retrograde marker hydroxy-stilbamide (FluoroGold) which was injected into the skin of the foot. The sciatic nerve was either ligated or crushed with fine forceps five to seven days later. Neurons were dissociated 14–17 days after injury. The cut ends of the sciatic nerves were positioned into polyethylene tubes, which were connected to mini-osmotic pumps filled with either nerve growth factor or sterile saline. Control neurons displayed a prominent sustained K-current and the transient potassium currents “A” and “D”. Nerve ligation, which blocks target reconnection resulted in near 50% reduction of total outward current; isolated sustained K-current and transient A-current were reduced by a comparable amount. Nerve crush, which allows regeneration to peripheral targets and exposure of the regenerating nerve to the distal nerve segment, resulted in a small reduction in sustained K-current but no reduction in transient A-current compared to controls. Levels of transient A-current and sustained K-current were maintained at control levels after nerve growth factor treatment. These results indicate that the large reduction in transient A-current, and in sustained K-current, observed in cutaneous afferent cell bodies after nerve ligation is prevented by application of nerve growth factor. PMID:11008179

  2. TRPC1 contributes to light-touch sensation and mechanical responses in low-threshold cutaneous sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Garrison, Sheldon R; Dietrich, Alexander; Stucky, Cheryl L

    2012-02-01

    The cellular proteins that underlie mechanosensation remain largely enigmatic in mammalian systems. Mechanically sensitive ion channels are thought to distinguish pressure, stretch, and other types of tactile signals in skin. Transient receptor potential canonical 1 (TRPC1) is a candidate mechanically sensitive channel that is expressed in primary afferent sensory neurons. However, its role in the mechanical sensitivity of these neurons is unclear. Here, we investigated TRPC1-dependent responses to both innocuous and noxious mechanical force. Mechanically evoked action potentials in cutaneous myelinated A-fiber and unmyelinated C-fiber neurons were quantified using the ex vivo skin-nerve preparation to record from the saphenous nerve, which terminates in the dorsal hairy skin of the hindpaw. Our data reveal that in TRPC1-deficient mice, mechanically evoked action potentials were decreased by nearly 50% in slowly adapting Aβ-fibers, which largely innervate Merkel cells, and in rapidly adapting Aδ-Down-hair afferent fibers compared with wild-type controls. In contrast, differences were not found in slowly adapting Aδ-mechanoreceptors or unmyelinated C-fibers, which primarily respond to nociceptive stimuli. These results suggest that TRPC1 may be important in the detection of innocuous mechanical force. We concurrently investigated the role of TRPC1 in behavioral responses to mechanical force to the plantar hindpaw skin. For innocuous stimuli, we developed a novel light stroke assay using a "puffed out" cotton swab. Additionally, we used repeated light, presumably innocuous punctate stimuli with a low threshold von Frey filament (0.68 mN). In agreement with our electrophysiological data in light-touch afferents, TRPC1-deficient mice exhibited nearly a 50% decrease in behavioral responses to both the light-stroke and light punctate mechanical assays when compared with wild-type controls. In contrast, TRPC1-deficient mice exhibited normal paw withdrawal response to

  3. Mu opioid receptors on primary afferent nav1.8 neurons contribute to opiate-induced analgesia: insight from conditional knockout mice.

    PubMed

    Weibel, Raphaël; Reiss, David; Karchewski, Laurie; Gardon, Olivier; Matifas, Audrey; Filliol, Dominique; Becker, Jérôme A J; Wood, John N; Kieffer, Brigitte L; Gaveriaux-Ruff, Claire

    2013-01-01

    Opiates are powerful drugs to treat severe pain, and act via mu opioid receptors distributed throughout the nervous system. Their clinical use is hampered by centrally-mediated adverse effects, including nausea or respiratory depression. Here we used a genetic approach to investigate the potential of peripheral mu opioid receptors as targets for pain treatment. We generated conditional knockout (cKO) mice in which mu opioid receptors are deleted specifically in primary afferent Nav1.8-positive neurons. Mutant animals were compared to controls for acute nociception, inflammatory pain, opiate-induced analgesia and constipation. There was a 76% decrease of mu receptor-positive neurons and a 60% reduction of mu-receptor mRNA in dorsal root ganglia of cKO mice. Mutant mice showed normal responses to heat, mechanical, visceral and chemical stimuli, as well as unchanged morphine antinociception and tolerance to antinociception in models of acute pain. Inflammatory pain developed similarly in cKO and controls mice after Complete Freund's Adjuvant. In the inflammation model, however, opiate-induced (morphine, fentanyl and loperamide) analgesia was reduced in mutant mice as compared to controls, and abolished at low doses. Morphine-induced constipation remained intact in cKO mice. We therefore genetically demonstrate for the first time that mu opioid receptors partly mediate opiate analgesia at the level of Nav1.8-positive sensory neurons. In our study, this mechanism operates under conditions of inflammatory pain, but not nociception. Previous pharmacology suggests that peripheral opiates may be clinically useful, and our data further demonstrate that Nav1.8 neuron-associated mu opioid receptors are feasible targets to alleviate some forms of persistent pain.

  4. Bilateral sensory deprivation of trigeminal afferent fibres on corticomotor control of human tongue musculature: a preliminary study.

    PubMed

    Kothari, M; Baad-Hansen, L; Svensson, P

    2016-09-01

    Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) has demonstrated changes in motor evoked potentials (MEPs) in human limb muscles following modulation of sensory afferent inputs. The aim of this study was to determine whether bilateral local anaesthesia (LA) of the lingual nerve affects the excitability of the tongue motor cortex (MI) as measured by TMS. The effect on MEPs after bilateral LA of the lingual nerve was studied, while the first dorsal interosseous (FDI) muscle served as a control in ten healthy participants. MEPs were measured on the right side of the tongue dorsum in four different conditions: (i) immediately prior to anaesthesia (baseline), (ii) during bilateral LA block of the lingual nerve, (iii) after anaesthesia had subjectively subsided (recovery) and (iv) 3 h after bilateral lingual block injection. MEPs were assessed using stimulus-response curves in steps of 10% of motor threshold (T). Eight stimuli were given at each stimulus level. The amplitudes of the tongue MEPs were significantly influenced by the stimulus intensity (P < 0·001) but not by condition (P = 0·186). However, post hoc tests showed that MEPS were statistically significantly higher during bilateral LA block condition compared with baseline at T + 40%, T + 50% and T + 60% (P < 0·028) and also compared with recovery at T + 60% (P = 0·010) as well as at 3 h after injection at T + 50% and T + 60% (P < 0·029). Bilateral LA block of the lingual nerve seems to be associated with a facilitation of the corticomotor pathways related to the tongue musculature.

  5. Modulation, individual variation and the role of lingual sensory afferents in the control of prey transport in the lizard Pogona vitticeps.

    PubMed

    Schaerlaeken, Vicky; Herrel, Anthony; Meyers, J J

    2008-07-01

    Most organisms feed on a variety of food items that may differ dramatically in their physical and behavioural characteristics (e.g. mobility, mass, texture, etc.). Thus the ability to modulate prey transport behaviour in accordance with the characteristics of the food appears crucial. Consequently, prey reduction and transport movements must be adjusted to the natural variation in material properties of the food, between and within feeding sequences and transport cycles. Here we describe an investigation of (1) the ability of the agamid lizard Pogona vitticeps to modulate prey transport kinematics when feeding on a range of food items differing in their physical characteristics and (2) the role of sensory feedback in controlling jaw and tongue movements by bilateral transection of the lingual trigeminal sensory afferents. Our findings demonstrate that P. vitticeps modulates the kinematics of its feeding behaviour in response to the mechanical demands imposed by different food types. In addition, transection of the trigeminal sensory afferents has an effect on the movements of jaws and tongue during transport, and increases the duration of transport cycles needed to process a given food type. However, after transection, transport cycles were still different for different food types suggesting that other sources of sensory information are also used to modulate prey transport in the lizard P. vitticeps.

  6. Traumatic Brain Injury and Neuronal Functionality Changes in Sensory Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Carron, Simone F.; Alwis, Dasuni S.; Rajan, Ramesh

    2016-01-01

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI), caused by direct blows to the head or inertial forces during relative head-brain movement, can result in long-lasting cognitive and motor deficits which can be particularly consequential when they occur in young people with a long life ahead. Much is known of the molecular and anatomical changes produced in TBI but much less is known of the consequences of these changes to neuronal functionality, especially in the cortex. Given that much of our interior and exterior lives are dependent on responsiveness to information from and about the world around us, we have hypothesized that a significant contributor to the cognitive and motor deficits seen after TBI could be changes in sensory processing. To explore this hypothesis, and to develop a model test system of the changes in neuronal functionality caused by TBI, we have examined neuronal encoding of simple and complex sensory input in the rat’s exploratory and discriminative tactile system, the large face macrovibrissae, which feeds to the so-called “barrel cortex” of somatosensory cortex. In this review we describe the short-term and long-term changes in the barrel cortex encoding of whisker motion modeling naturalistic whisker movement undertaken by rats engaged in a variety of tasks. We demonstrate that the most common form of TBI results in persistent neuronal hyperexcitation specifically in the upper cortical layers, likely due to changes in inhibition. We describe the types of cortical inhibitory neurons and their roles and how selective effects on some of these could produce the particular forms of neuronal encoding changes described in TBI, and then generalize to compare the effects on inhibition seen in other forms of brain injury. From these findings we make specific predictions as to how non-invasive extra-cranial electrophysiology can be used to provide the high-precision information needed to monitor and understand the temporal evolution of changes in neuronal

  7. Traumatic Brain Injury and Neuronal Functionality Changes in Sensory Cortex.

    PubMed

    Carron, Simone F; Alwis, Dasuni S; Rajan, Ramesh

    2016-01-01

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI), caused by direct blows to the head or inertial forces during relative head-brain movement, can result in long-lasting cognitive and motor deficits which can be particularly consequential when they occur in young people with a long life ahead. Much is known of the molecular and anatomical changes produced in TBI but much less is known of the consequences of these changes to neuronal functionality, especially in the cortex. Given that much of our interior and exterior lives are dependent on responsiveness to information from and about the world around us, we have hypothesized that a significant contributor to the cognitive and motor deficits seen after TBI could be changes in sensory processing. To explore this hypothesis, and to develop a model test system of the changes in neuronal functionality caused by TBI, we have examined neuronal encoding of simple and complex sensory input in the rat's exploratory and discriminative tactile system, the large face macrovibrissae, which feeds to the so-called "barrel cortex" of somatosensory cortex. In this review we describe the short-term and long-term changes in the barrel cortex encoding of whisker motion modeling naturalistic whisker movement undertaken by rats engaged in a variety of tasks. We demonstrate that the most common form of TBI results in persistent neuronal hyperexcitation specifically in the upper cortical layers, likely due to changes in inhibition. We describe the types of cortical inhibitory neurons and their roles and how selective effects on some of these could produce the particular forms of neuronal encoding changes described in TBI, and then generalize to compare the effects on inhibition seen in other forms of brain injury. From these findings we make specific predictions as to how non-invasive extra-cranial electrophysiology can be used to provide the high-precision information needed to monitor and understand the temporal evolution of changes in neuronal functionality

  8. Early Afferent Activity from the Facet Joint after Painful Trauma to its Capsule Potentiates Neuronal Excitability and Glutamate Signaling in the Spinal Cord

    PubMed Central

    Crosby, Nathan D.; Gilliland, Taylor M.; Winkelstein, Beth A.

    2014-01-01

    Cervical facet joint injury induces persistent pain and central sensitization. Preventing the peripheral neuronal signals that initiate sensitization attenuates neuropathic pain. Yet, there is no clear relationship between facet joint afferent activity, development of central sensitization, and pain, which may be hindering effective treatments for this pain syndrome. This study investigates how afferent activity from the injured cervical facet joint affects induction of behavioral sensitivity and central sensitization. Intra-articular bupivacaine was administered to transiently suppress afferent activity immediately or 4 days after facet injury. Mechanical hyperalgesia was monitored after injury, and spinal neuronal hyperexcitability and spinal expression of proteins that promote neuronal excitability were measured on day 7. Facet injury with saline vehicle treatment induced significant mechanical hyperalgesia (p<0.027), dorsal horn neuronal hyperexcitability (p<0.026), upregulation of pERK1/2, pNR1, mGluR5, GLAST, and GFAP, and downregulation of GLT1 (p<0.032). However, intra-articular bupivacaine immediately after injury significantly attenuated hyperalgesia (p<0.0001), neuronal hyperexcitability (p<0.004), and dysregulation of excitatory signaling proteins (p<0.049). In contrast, intra-articular bupivacaine at day 4 had no effect on these outcomes. Silencing afferent activity during the development of neuronal hyperexcitability (4hr, 8hr, 1 day) attenuated hyperalgesia and neuronal hyperexcitability (p<0.045) only for the treatment given 4 hours after injury. This study suggests that early afferent activity from the injured facet induces development of spinal sensitization via spinal excitatory glutamatergic signaling. Peripheral intervention blocking afferent activity is only effective over a short period of time early after injury and before spinal modifications develop, and is independent of modulating spinal glial activation. PMID:24978827

  9. Visualization of Sensory Neurons and Their Projections in an Upper Motor Neuron Reporter Line.

    PubMed

    Genç, Barış; Lagrimas, Amiko Krisa Bunag; Kuru, Pınar; Hess, Robert; Tu, Michael William; Menichella, Daniela Maria; Miller, Richard J; Paller, Amy S; Özdinler, P Hande

    2015-01-01

    Visualization of peripheral nervous system axons and cell bodies is important to understand their development, target recognition, and integration into complex circuitries. Numerous studies have used protein gene product (PGP) 9.5 [a.k.a. ubiquitin carboxy-terminal hydrolase L1 (UCHL1)] expression as a marker to label sensory neurons and their axons. Enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP) expression, under the control of UCHL1 promoter, is stable and long lasting in the UCHL1-eGFP reporter line. In addition to the genetic labeling of corticospinal motor neurons in the motor cortex and degeneration-resistant spinal motor neurons in the spinal cord, here we report that neurons of the peripheral nervous system are also fluorescently labeled in the UCHL1-eGFP reporter line. eGFP expression is turned on at embryonic ages and lasts through adulthood, allowing detailed studies of cell bodies, axons and target innervation patterns of all sensory neurons in vivo. In addition, visualization of both the sensory and the motor neurons in the same animal offers many advantages. In this report, we used UCHL1-eGFP reporter line in two different disease paradigms: diabetes and motor neuron disease. eGFP expression in sensory axons helped determine changes in epidermal nerve fiber density in a high-fat diet induced diabetes model. Our findings corroborate previous studies, and suggest that more than five months is required for significant skin denervation. Crossing UCHL1-eGFP with hSOD1G93A mice generated hSOD1G93A-UeGFP reporter line of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and revealed sensory nervous system defects, especially towards disease end-stage. Our studies not only emphasize the complexity of the disease in ALS, but also reveal that UCHL1-eGFP reporter line would be a valuable tool to visualize and study various aspects of sensory nervous system development and degeneration in the context of numerous diseases.

  10. Peripheral Sensory Neurons Expressing Melanopsin Respond to Light

    PubMed Central

    Matynia, Anna; Nguyen, Eileen; Sun, Xiaoping; Blixt, Frank W.; Parikh, Sachin; Kessler, Jason; Pérez de Sevilla Müller, Luis; Habib, Samer; Kim, Paul; Wang, Zhe Z.; Rodriguez, Allen; Charles, Andrew; Nusinowitz, Steven; Edvinsson, Lars; Barnes, Steven; Brecha, Nicholas C.; Gorin, Michael B.

    2016-01-01

    The ability of light to cause pain is paradoxical. The retina detects light but is devoid of nociceptors while the trigeminal sensory ganglia (TG) contain nociceptors but not photoreceptors. Melanopsin-expressing intrinsically photosensitive retinal ganglion cells (ipRGCs) are thought to mediate light-induced pain but recent evidence raises the possibility of an alternative light responsive pathway independent of the retina and optic nerve. Here, we show that melanopsin is expressed in both human and mouse TG neurons. In mice, they represent 3% of small TG neurons that are preferentially localized in the ophthalmic branch of the trigeminal nerve and are likely nociceptive C fibers and high-threshold mechanoreceptor Aδ fibers based on a strong size-function association. These isolated neurons respond to blue light stimuli with a delayed onset and sustained firing, similar to the melanopsin-dependent intrinsic photosensitivity observed in ipRGCs. Mice with severe bilateral optic nerve crush exhibit no light-induced responses including behavioral light aversion until treated with nitroglycerin, an inducer of migraine in people and migraine-like symptoms in mice. With nitroglycerin, these same mice with optic nerve crush exhibit significant light aversion. Furthermore, this retained light aversion remains dependent on melanopsin-expressing neurons. Our results demonstrate a novel light-responsive neural function independent of the optic nerve that may originate in the peripheral nervous system to provide the first direct mechanism for an alternative light detection pathway that influences motivated behavior. PMID:27559310

  11. Coarse topographic organization of pheromone-sensitive afferents from different antennal surfaces in the American cockroach.

    PubMed

    Nishino, Hiroshi; Watanabe, Hidehiro; Kamimura, Itsuro; Yokohari, Fumio; Mizunami, Makoto

    2015-05-19

    In contrast to visual, auditory, taste, and mechanosensory neuropils, in which sensory afferents are topographically organized on the basis of their peripheral soma locations, axons of cognate sensory neurons from different locations of the olfactory sense organ converge onto a small spherical neuropil (glomerulus) in the first-order olfactory center. In the cockroach Periplaneta americana, sex pheromone-sensitive afferents with somata in the antero-dorsal and postero-ventral surfaces of a long whip-like antenna are biased toward the anterior and posterior regions of a macroglomerulus, respectively. In each region, afferents with somata in the more proximal antenna project to more proximal region, relative to the axonal entry points. However, precise topography of afferents in the macroglomerulus has remained unknown. Using single and multiple neuronal stainings, we showed that afferents arising from anterior, dorsal, ventral and posterior surfaces of the proximal regions of an antenna were biased progressively from the anterior to posterior region of the macroglomerulus, reflecting chiasmatic axonal re-arrangements that occur immediately before entering the antennal lobe. Morphologies of individual afferents originating from the proximal antenna matched results of mass neuronal stainings, but their three-dimensional origins in the antenna were hardly predictable on the basis of the projection patterns. Such projection biases made by neuronal populations differ from strict somatotopic projections of antennal mechanosensory neurons in the same species, suggesting a unique sensory mechanism to process information about odor location and direction on a single antenna.

  12. ESTRADIOL RAPIDLY MODULATES ODOR RESPONSES IN MOUSE VOMERONASAL SENSORY NEURONS

    PubMed Central

    CHERIAN, S.; LAM, Y. WAI; MCDANIELS, I.; STRUZIAK, M.; DELAY, R. J.

    2014-01-01

    In rodents, many social behaviors are driven by the sense of smell. The vomeronasal organ (VNO), part of the accessory olfactory system mediates many of these chemically driven behaviors. The VNO is heavily vascularized, and is readily accessible to circulating peptide or steroid hormones. Potentially, this allows circulating hormones to alter behavior through modulating the output of the primary sensory neurons in the VNO, the vomeronasal sensory neurons (VSNs). Based on this, we hypothesized that steroid hormones, in particular 17β-estradiol, would modulate activity of VSNs. In this paper, we show that the estrogen receptors, GPR30 and ERα, were present in VSNs and that estradiol may be synthesized locally in the VNO. Our results also showed that 17β-estradiol decreased responses of isolated VSNs to dilute urine, a potent natural stimulus, with respect to current amplitudes and depolarization. Further, 17β-estradiol increased the latency of the first action potential (AP) and the AP amplitude. Additionally, calcium responses to sulfated steroids (present in the low molecular weight fraction of urine) that act as ligands for apical vomeronasal receptors were decreased by 17β-estradiol. In conclusion, we show that estradiol modulates odorant responses mediated by VSNs and hence paves the way for future studies to better understand the mechanisms by which odorant mediated behavior is altered by endocrine status of the animal. PMID:24680884

  13. The soma and neurites of primary afferent neurons in the guinea-pig intestine respond differentially to deformation

    PubMed Central

    Kunze, W A A; Clerc, N; Furness, J B; Gola, M

    2000-01-01

    Intrinsic primary afferent neurons in the small intestine are exposed to distortion of their processes and of their cell bodies. Recordings of mechanosensitivity have previously been made from these neurons using intracellular microelectrodes, but this form of recording has not permitted detection of generator potentials from the processes, or of responses to cell body distortion.We have developed a technique to record from enteric neurons in situ using patch electrodes. The mechanical stability of the patch recordings has allowed recording in cell-attached and whole cell configuration during imposed movement of the neurons.Pressing with a fine probe initiated generator potentials (14 ± 9 mV) from circumscribed regions of the neuron processes within the same myenteric ganglion, at distances from 100 to 500 μm from the cell body that was patched. Generator potentials persisted when synaptic transmission was blocked with high Mg2+, low Ca2+ solution.Soma distortion, by pressing down with the whole cell recording electrode, inhibited action potential firing. Consistent with this, moderate intra-electrode pressure (10 mbar; 1 kPa) increased the opening probability of large-conductance (BK) potassium channels, recorded in cell-attached mode, but suction was not effective. In outside-out patches, suction, but not pressure, increased channel opening probability. Mechanosensitive BK channels have not been identified on other neurons.The BK channels had conductances of 195 ± 25 pS. Open probability was increased by depolarization, with a half-maximum activation at a patch potential of 20 mV and a slope factor of 10 mV. Channel activity was blocked by charybdotoxin (20 nM).Stretch that increased membrane area under the electrode by 15 % was sufficient to double open probability. Similar changes in membrane area occur when the intestine changes diameter and wall tension under physiological conditions. Thus, the intestinal intrinsic primary afferent neurons are detectors of

  14. Sensory neurons do not induce motor neuron loss in a human stem cell model of spinal muscular atrophy.

    PubMed

    Schwab, Andrew J; Ebert, Allison D

    2014-01-01

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is an autosomal recessive disorder leading to paralysis and early death due to reduced SMN protein. It is unclear why there is such a profound motor neuron loss, but recent evidence from fly and mouse studies indicate that cells comprising the whole sensory-motor circuit may contribute to motor neuron dysfunction and loss. Here, we used induced pluripotent stem cells derived from SMA patients to test whether sensory neurons directly contribute to motor neuron loss. We generated sensory neurons from SMA induced pluripotent stem cells and found no difference in neuron generation or survival, although there was a reduced calcium response to depolarizing stimuli. Using co-culture of SMA induced pluripotent stem cell derived sensory neurons with control induced pluripotent stem cell derived motor neurons, we found no significant reduction in motor neuron number or glutamate transporter boutons on motor neuron cell bodies or neurites. We conclude that SMA sensory neurons do not overtly contribute to motor neuron loss in this human stem cell system.

  15. Jaw muscle spindle afferents coordinate multiple orofacial motoneurons via common premotor neurons in rats: an electrophysiological and anatomical study.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jingdong; Luo, Pifu; Ro, Jin Y; Xiong, Huangui

    2012-12-13

    Jaw muscle spindle afferents (JMSA) in the mesencephalic trigeminal nucleus (Vme) project to the parvocellular reticular nucleus (PCRt) and dorsomedial spinal trigeminal nucleus (dm-Vsp). A number of premotor neurons that project to the trigeminal motor nucleus (Vmo), facial nucleus (VII) and hypoglossal nucleus (XII) are also located in the PCRt and dm-Vsp. In this study, we examined whether these premotor neurons serve as common relay pool for relaying JMSA to multiple orofacial motoneurons. JMSA inputs to the PCRt and dm-Vsp neurons were verified by recording extracellular responses to electrical stimulation of the caudal Vme or masseter nerve, mechanical stimulation of jaw muscles and jaw opening. After recording, biocytin in recording electrode was inotophorized into recording sites. Biocytin-Iabeled fibers traveled to the Vmo, VII, XII, and the nucleus ambiguus (Amb). Labeled boutons were seen in close apposition with Nissl-stained motoneurons in the Vmo, VII, XII and Amb. In addition, an anterograde tracer (biotinylated dextran amine) was iontophorized into the caudal Vme, and a retrograde tracer (Cholera toxin B subunit) was delivered into either the VII or Xll to identify VII and XII premotor neurons that receive JMSA input. Contacts between labeled Vme neuronal boutons and premotor neurons were observed in the PCRt and adjacent dm-Vsp. Confocal microscopic observations confirmed close contacts between Vme boutons and VII and XII premotor neurons. This study provides evidence that JMSA may coordinate activities of multiple orofacial motor nuclei, including Vmo, VII, XII and Amb in the brainstem via a common premotor neuron pool.

  16. Dynorphin-Dependent Reduction of Excitability and Attenuation of Inhibitory Afferents of NPS Neurons in the Pericoerulear Region of Mice

    PubMed Central

    Jüngling, Kay; Blaesse, Peter; Goedecke, Lena; Pape, Hans-Christian

    2016-01-01

    The Neuropeptide S system, consisting of the 20-amino acid peptide neuropeptide S (NPS) and its G-protein coupled receptor (NPSR), modulates arousal, wakefulness, anxiety, and fear-extinction in mice. In addition, recent evidence indicates that the NPS system attenuates stress-dependent impairment of fear extinction, and that NPS-expressing neurons in close proximity to the locus coeruleus region (LC; pericoerulear, periLC) are activated by stress. Furthermore, periLC NPS neurons receive afferents from neurons of the centrolateral nucleus of the amygdala (CeL), of which a substantial population expresses the kappa opioid receptor (KOR) ligand precursor prodynorphin. This study aims to identify the effect of the dynorphinergic system on NPS neurons in the periLC via pre- and postsynaptic mechanisms. Using electrophysiological recordings in mouse brain slices, we provide evidence that NPS neurons in the periLC region are directly inhibited by dynorphin A (DynA) via activation of κ-opioid receptor 1 (KOR1) and a subsequent increase of potassium conductances. Thus, the dynorphinergic system is suited to inactivate NPS neurons in the periLC. In addition to this direct, somatic effect, DynA reduces the efficacy of GABAergic synapses on NPS neurons via KOR1 and KOR2. In conclusion, the present study provides evidence for the interaction of the NPS and the kappa opioid system in the periLC. Therefore, the endogenous opioid dynorphin is suited to inhibit NPS neurons with a subsequent decrease in NPS release in putative target regions leading to a variety of physiological consequences such as increased anxiety or vulnerability to stress exposure. PMID:27013974

  17. Differences in electrophysiological properties of functionally identified nociceptive sensory neurons in an animal model of cancer-induced bone pain

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Yong Fang; Ungard, Robert; Seidlitz, Eric; Zacal, Natalie; Huizinga, Jan; Henry, James L

    2016-01-01

    Background Bone cancer pain is often severe, yet little is known about mechanisms generating this type of chronic pain. While previous studies have identified functional alterations in peripheral sensory neurons that correlate with bone tumours, none has provided direct evidence correlating behavioural nociceptive responses with properties of sensory neurons in an intact bone cancer model. Results In a rat model of prostate cancer-induced bone pain, we confirmed tactile hypersensitivity using the von Frey test. Subsequently, we recorded intracellularly from dorsal root ganglion neurons in vivo in anesthetized animals. Neurons remained connected to their peripheral receptive terminals and were classified on the basis of action potential properties, responses to dorsal root stimulation, and to mechanical stimulation of the respective peripheral receptive fields. Neurons included C-, Aδ-, and Aβ-fibre nociceptors, identified by their expression of substance P. We suggest that bone tumour may induce phenotypic changes in peripheral nociceptors and that these could contribute to bone cancer pain. Conclusions This work represents a significant technical and conceptual advance in the study of peripheral nociceptor functions in the development of cancer-induced bone pain. This is the first study to report that changes in sensitivity and excitability of dorsal root ganglion primary afferents directly correspond to mechanical allodynia and hyperalgesia behaviours following prostate cancer cell injection into the femur of rats. Furthermore, our unique combination of techniques has allowed us to follow, in a single neuron, mechanical pain-related behaviours, electrophysiological changes in action potential properties, and dorsal root substance P expression. These data provide a more complete understanding of this unique pain state at the cellular level that may allow for future development of mechanism-based treatments for cancer-induced bone pain. PMID:27030711

  18. Large Intercalated Neurons of Amygdala Relay Noxious Sensory Information

    PubMed Central

    Bienvenu, Thomas C.M.; Busti, Daniela; Micklem, Benjamin R.; Mansouri, Mahnaz; Magill, Peter J.

    2015-01-01

    Various GABAergic neuron types of the amygdala cooperate to control principal cell firing during fear-related and other behaviors, and understanding their specialized roles is important. Among GABAergic neurons, the so-called intercalated cells (ITCcs) are critically involved in the expression and extinction of fear memory. Tightly clustered small-sized spiny neurons constitute the majority of ITCcs, but they are surrounded by sparse, larger neurons (L-ITCcs) for which very little information is known. We report here a detailed neurochemical, structural and physiological characterization of rat L-ITCcs, as identified with juxtacellular recording/labeling in vivo. We supplement these data with anatomical and neurochemical analyses of nonrecorded L-ITCcs. We demonstrate that L-ITCcs are GABAergic, and strongly express metabotropic glutamate receptor 1α and GABAA receptor α1 subunit, together with moderate levels of parvalbumin. Furthermore, L-ITCcs are innervated by fibers enriched with metabotropic glutamate receptors 7a and/or 8a. In contrast to small-sized spiny ITCcs, L-ITCcs possess thick, aspiny dendrites, have highly branched, long-range axonal projections, and innervate interneurons in the basolateral amygdaloid complex. The axons of L-ITCcs also project to distant brain areas, such as the perirhinal, entorhinal, and endopiriform cortices. In vivo recorded L-ITCcs are strongly activated by noxious stimuli, such as hindpaw pinches or electrical footshocks. Consistent with this, we observed synaptic contacts on L-ITCc dendrites from nociceptive intralaminar thalamic nuclei. We propose that, during salient sensory stimulation, L-ITCcs disinhibit local and distant principal neurons, acting as “hub cells,” to orchestrate the activity of a distributed network. PMID:25653362

  19. Selective decrease of small sensory neurons in lumbar dorsal root ganglia labeled with horseradish peroxidase after ND:YAG laser irradiation of the tibial nerve in the rat

    SciTech Connect

    Wesselmann, U.; Lin, S.F.; Rymer, W.Z. )

    1991-02-01

    Recent electrophysiological evidence indicates that Q-switched Nd:YAG laser irradiation might have selective effects on neural impulse transmission in small slow conducting sensory nerve fibers as compared to large diameter afferents. In an attempt to clarify the ultimate fate of sensory neurons after laser application to their peripheral axons, we have used horseradish peroxidase (HRP) as a cell marker to retrogradely label sensory neurons innervating the distal hindlimb in the rat. Pulsed Nd:YAG laser light was applied to the tibial nerve at pulse energies of 70 or 80 mJ/pulse for 5 min in experimental rats. Seven days later HRP was applied to the left (laser-treated) and to the contralateral (untreated) tibial nerve proximal to the site of laser irradiation. In control animals the numbers of HRP-labeled dorsal root ganglion cells were not significantly different between the right and the left side. In contrast, after previous laser irradiation labeling was always less on the laser-treated side (2183 +/- 513 cells, mean +/- SEM) as compared to the untreated side (3937 +/- 225). Analysis of the dimensions of labeled cells suggested that the reduction of labeled cells on the laser-treated side was mainly due to a deficit in small sensory neurons. Since the conduction velocity of nerve fibers is related to the size of their somata, our histological data imply that laser light selectively affects retrograde transport mechanisms for HRP in slow conducting sensory nerve fibers.

  20. Role of capsaicin-sensitive afferents and sensory neuropeptides in endotoxin-induced airway inflammation and consequent bronchial hyperreactivity in the mouse.

    PubMed

    Elekes, Krisztián; Helyes, Zsuzsanna; Németh, József; Sándor, Katalin; Pozsgai, Gábor; Kereskai, László; Börzsei, Rita; Pintér, Erika; Szabó, Arpád; Szolcsányi, János

    2007-06-07

    Substance P (SP) and calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) released from capsaicin-sensitive afferents induce neurogenic inflammation via NK(1), NK(2) and CGRP1 receptor activation. This study examines the role of capsaicin-sensitive fibres and sensory neuropeptides in endotoxin-induced airway inflammation and consequent bronchial hyperreactivity with functional, morphological and biochemical techniques in mice. Carbachol-induced bronchoconstriction was measured with whole body plethysmography 24 h after intranasal lipopolysaccharide administration. SP and CGRP were determined with radioimmunoassay, myeloperoxidase activity with spectrophotometry, interleukin-1beta with ELISA and histopathological changes with semiquantitative scoring from lung samples. Treatments with resiniferatoxin for selective destruction of capsaicin-sensitive afferents, NK(1) antagonist SR 140333, NK(2) antagonist SR 48968, their combination, or CGRP1 receptor antagonist CGRP(8-37) were performed. Lipopolysaccharide significantly increased lung SP and CGRP concentrations, which was prevented by resiniferatoxin pretreatment. Resiniferatoxin-desensitization markedly enhanced inflammation, but decreased bronchoconstriction. CGRP(8-37) or combination of SR 140333 and SR 48968 diminished neutrophil accumulation, MPO levels and IL-1beta production, airway hyperresponsiveness was inhibited only by SR 48968. This is the first evidence that capsaicin-sensitive afferents exert a protective role in endotoxin-induced airway inflammation, but contribute to increased bronchoconstriction. Activation of CGRP1 receptors or NK(1)+NK(2) receptors participate in granulocyte accumulation, but NK(2) receptors play predominant role in enhanced airway resistance.

  1. Frequency-dependent action potential prolongation in Aplysia pleural sensory neurones.

    PubMed

    Edstrom, J P; Lukowiak, K D

    1985-10-01

    but it is clear from these data that repetitive activity in these cells will augment calcium entry and that this increased calcium entry has a complex but predictable dependence on the duration of, and firing rate within, an afferent volley. Because these cells are involved in important adaptive behaviour it is inferred that these behaviours will be complexly affected by the intensity and duration of the stimulation of the receptive fields of the pleural sensory neurons.

  2. Artemin growth factor increases nicotinic cholinergic receptor subunit expression and activity in nociceptive sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Artemin (Artn), a member of the glial cell line-derived growth factor (GDNF) family, supports the development and function of a subpopulation of peptidergic, TRPV1-positive sensory neurons. Artn (enovin, neublastin) is elevated in inflamed tissue and its injection in skin causes transient thermal hyperalgesia. A genome wide expression analysis of trigeminal ganglia of mice that overexpress Artn in the skin (ART-OE mice) showed elevation in nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunits, suggesting these ion channels contribute to Artn-induced sensitivity. Here we have used gene expression, immunolabeling, patch clamp electrophysiology and behavioral testing assays to investigate the link between Artn, nicotinic subunit expression and thermal hypersensitivity. Results Reverse transcriptase-PCR validation showed increased levels of mRNAs encoding the nAChR subunits α3 (13.3-fold), β3 (4-fold) and β4 (7.7-fold) in trigeminal ganglia and α3 (4-fold) and β4 (2.8-fold) in dorsal root ganglia (DRG) of ART-OE mice. Sensory ganglia of ART-OE mice had increased immunoreactivity for nAChRα3 and exhibited increased overlap in labeling with GFRα3-positive neurons. Patch clamp analysis of back-labeled cutaneous afferents showed that while the majority of nicotine-evoked currents in DRG neurons had biophysical and pharmacological properties of α7-subunit containing nAChRs, the Artn-induced increase in α3 and β4 subunits resulted in functional channels. Behavioral analysis of ART-OE and wildtype mice showed that Artn-induced thermal hyperalgesia can be blocked by mecamylamine or hexamethonium. Complete Freund’s adjuvant (CFA) inflammation of paw skin, which causes an increase in Artn in the skin, also increased the level of nAChR mRNAs in DRG. Finally, the increase in nAChRs transcription was not dependent on the Artn-induced increase in TRPV1 or TRPA1 in ART-OE mice since nAChRs were elevated in ganglia of TRPV1/TRPA1 double knockout mice. Conclusions

  3. Coordinated Rhythmic Motion by Uncoupled Neuronal Oscillators with Sensory Feedback

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iwasaki, Tetsuya

    This paper explores the potential of biological oscillators as a basic unit for feedback control to achieve rhythmic motion of locomotory systems. Among those properties of biological control systems that are useful for engineering applications, we focus on decentralized coordination, that is, the ability of uncoupled neuronal oscillators to coordinate rhythmic body movements to achieve locomotion with the aid of local sensory feedback. We will consider the reciprocal inhibition oscillator (RIO) as a candidate for the basic control unit, and show that uncoupled RIOs can achieve decentralized coordination of a prototype mechanical rectifier (PMR) that captures essential dynamics underlying animal locomotion by a simple arm-disk configuration. Optimality of the induced locomotion is studied in comparison with analytical results we derive for statically optimal PMR locomotion.

  4. Membrane stiffening by STOML3 facilitates mechanosensation in sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Qi, Yanmei; Andolfi, Laura; Frattini, Flavia; Mayer, Florian; Lazzarino, Marco; Hu, Jing

    2015-10-07

    Sensing force is crucial to maintain the viability of all living cells. Despite its fundamental importance, how force is sensed at the molecular level remains largely unknown. Here we show that stomatin-like protein-3 (STOML3) controls membrane mechanics by binding cholesterol and thus facilitates force transfer and tunes the sensitivity of mechano-gated channels, including Piezo channels. STOML3 is detected in cholesterol-rich lipid rafts. In mouse sensory neurons, depletion of cholesterol and deficiency of STOML3 similarly and interdependently attenuate mechanosensitivity while modulating membrane mechanics. In heterologous systems, intact STOML3 is required to maintain membrane mechanics to sensitize Piezo1 and Piezo2 channels. In C57BL/6N, but not STOML3(-/-) mice, tactile allodynia is attenuated by cholesterol depletion, suggesting that membrane stiffening by STOML3 is essential for mechanical sensitivity. Targeting the STOML3-cholesterol association might offer an alternative strategy for control of chronic pain.

  5. Nociceptive Sensory Neurons Drive Interleukin-23 Mediated Psoriasiform Skin Inflammation

    PubMed Central

    Riol-Blanco, Lorena; Ordovas-Montanes, Jose; Perro, Mario; Naval, Elena; Thiriot, Aude; Alvarez, David; Wood, John N.; von Andrian, Ulrich H.

    2014-01-01

    The skin has a dual function as a barrier and a sensory interface between the body and the environment. To protect against invading pathogens, the skin harbors specialized immune cells, including dermal dendritic cells (DDCs) and interleukin (IL)-17 producing γδ T cells (γδT17), whose aberrant activation by IL-23 can provoke psoriasis-like inflammation1–4. The skin is also innervated by a meshwork of peripheral nerves consisting of relatively sparse autonomic and abundant sensory fibers. Interactions between the autonomic nervous system and immune cells in lymphoid organs are known to contribute to systemic immunity, but how peripheral nerves regulate cutaneous immune responses remains unclear5,6. Here, we have exposed the skin of mice to imiquimod (IMQ), which induces IL-23 dependent psoriasis-like inflammation7,8. We show that a subset of sensory neurons expressing the ion channels TRPV1 and NaV1.8 is essential to drive this inflammatory response. Imaging of intact skin revealed that a large fraction of DDCs, the principal source of IL-23, is in close contact with these nociceptors. Upon selective pharmacological or genetic ablation of nociceptors9–11, DDCs failed to produce IL-23 in IMQ exposed skin. Consequently, the local production of IL-23 dependent inflammatory cytokines by dermal γδT17 cells and the subsequent recruitment of inflammatory cells to the skin were dramatically reduced. Intradermal injection of IL-23 bypassed the requirement for nociceptor communication with DDCs and restored the inflammatory response12. These findings indicate that TRPV1+NaV1.8+ nociceptors, by interacting with DDCs, regulate the IL-23/IL-17 pathway and control cutaneous immune responses. PMID:24759321

  6. Nociceptive sensory neurons drive interleukin-23-mediated psoriasiform skin inflammation.

    PubMed

    Riol-Blanco, Lorena; Ordovas-Montanes, Jose; Perro, Mario; Naval, Elena; Thiriot, Aude; Alvarez, David; Paust, Silke; Wood, John N; von Andrian, Ulrich H

    2014-06-05

    The skin has a dual function as a barrier and a sensory interface between the body and the environment. To protect against invading pathogens, the skin harbours specialized immune cells, including dermal dendritic cells (DDCs) and interleukin (IL)-17-producing γδ T (γδT17) cells, the aberrant activation of which by IL-23 can provoke psoriasis-like inflammation. The skin is also innervated by a meshwork of peripheral nerves consisting of relatively sparse autonomic and abundant sensory fibres. Interactions between the autonomic nervous system and immune cells in lymphoid organs are known to contribute to systemic immunity, but how peripheral nerves regulate cutaneous immune responses remains unclear. We exposed the skin of mice to imiquimod, which induces IL-23-dependent psoriasis-like inflammation. Here we show that a subset of sensory neurons expressing the ion channels TRPV1 and Nav1.8 is essential to drive this inflammatory response. Imaging of intact skin revealed that a large fraction of DDCs, the principal source of IL-23, is in close contact with these nociceptors. Upon selective pharmacological or genetic ablation of nociceptors, DDCs failed to produce IL-23 in imiquimod-exposed skin. Consequently, the local production of IL-23-dependent inflammatory cytokines by dermal γδT17 cells and the subsequent recruitment of inflammatory cells to the skin were markedly reduced. Intradermal injection of IL-23 bypassed the requirement for nociceptor communication with DDCs and restored the inflammatory response. These findings indicate that TRPV1(+)Nav1.8(+) nociceptors, by interacting with DDCs, regulate the IL-23/IL-17 pathway and control cutaneous immune responses.

  7. Distinct signaling of Drosophila chemoreceptors in olfactory sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Li-Hui; Jing, Bi-Yang; Yang, Dong; Zeng, Xiankun; Shen, Ying; Tu, Yuhai; Luo, Dong-Gen

    2016-01-01

    In Drosophila, olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs) rely primarily on two types of chemoreceptors, odorant receptors (Ors) and ionotropic receptors (Irs), to convert odor stimuli into neural activity. The cellular signaling of these receptors in their native OSNs remains unclear because of the difficulty of obtaining intracellular recordings from Drosophila OSNs. Here, we developed an antennal preparation that enabled the first recordings (to our knowledge) from targeted Drosophila OSNs through a patch-clamp technique. We found that brief odor pulses triggered graded inward receptor currents with distinct response kinetics and current–voltage relationships between Or- and Ir-driven responses. When stimulated with long-step odors, the receptor current of Ir-expressing OSNs did not adapt. In contrast, Or-expressing OSNs showed a strong Ca2+-dependent adaptation. The adaptation-induced changes in odor sensitivity obeyed the Weber–Fechner relation; however, surprisingly, the incremental sensitivity was reduced at low odor backgrounds but increased at high odor backgrounds. Our model for odor adaptation revealed two opposing effects of adaptation, desensitization and prevention of saturation, in dynamically adjusting odor sensitivity and extending the sensory operating range. PMID:26831094

  8. A New Regulatory Mechanism for Kv7.2 Protein During Neuropathy: Enhanced Transport from the Soma to Axonal Terminals of Injured Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Cisneros, Elsa; Roza, Carolina; Jackson, Nieka; López-García, José Antonio

    2015-01-01

    Kv7.2 channel expression has been reported to decrease in dorsal root ganglia (DRG) following the induction of a peripheral neuropathy while other experiments show that Kv7.2 accumulates in peripheral neuromas. The mechanisms underlying these novel expression patterns are poorly understood. Here we use immunofluorescence methods to analyze Kv7.2 protein expression changes in sensory neurons following peripheral axotomy and the potential role of axonal transport. Results indicate that DRG neurons express Kv7.2 in ~16% of neurons and that this number decreases by about 65% after axotomy. Damaged neurons were identified in DRG by application of the tracer Fluoro-ruby at the site of injury during surgery. Reduction of Kv7.2 expression was particularly strong in damaged neurons although some loss was also found in putative uninjured neurons. In parallel to the decrease in the soma of axotomized sensory neurons, Kv7.2 accumulated at neuromatose fiber endings. Blockade of axonal transport with either vinblastine (VLB) or colchicine (COL) abolished Kv7.2 redistribution in neuropathic animals. Channel distribution rearrangements did not occur following induction of inflammation in the hind paw. Behavioral tests indicate that protein rearrangements within sensory afferents are essential to the development of allodynia under neuropathic conditions. These results suggest that axotomy enhances axonal transport in injured sensory neurons, leading to a decrease of somatic expression of Kv7.2 protein and a concomitant accumulation in damaged fiber endings. Localized changes in channel expression patterns under pathological conditions may create novel opportunities for Kv7.2 channel openers to act as analgesics. PMID:26696829

  9. Identification of motor neurons and a mechanosensitive sensory neuron in the defecation circuitry of Drosophila larvae

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Wei; Yan, Zhiqiang; Li, Bingxue; Jan, Lily Yeh; Jan, Yuh Nung

    2014-01-01

    Defecation allows the body to eliminate waste, an essential step in food processing for animal survival. In contrast to the extensive studies of feeding, its obligate counterpart, defecation, has received much less attention until recently. In this study, we report our characterizations of the defecation behavior of Drosophila larvae and its neural basis. Drosophila larvae display defecation cycles of stereotypic frequency, involving sequential contraction of hindgut and anal sphincter. The defecation behavior requires two groups of motor neurons that innervate hindgut and anal sphincter, respectively, and can excite gut muscles directly. These two groups of motor neurons fire sequentially with the same periodicity as the defecation behavior, as revealed by in vivo Ca2+ imaging. Moreover, we identified a single mechanosensitive sensory neuron that innervates the anal slit and senses the opening of the intestine terminus. This anus sensory neuron relies on the TRP channel NOMPC but not on INACTIVE, NANCHUNG, or PIEZO for mechanotransduction. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.03293.001 PMID:25358089

  10. Reduced thermal sensitivity and Nav1.8 and TRPV1 channel expression in sensory neurons of aged mice

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Shuying; Davis, Brian M.; Zwick, Melissa; Waxman, Stephen G.; Albers, Kathryn M.

    2010-01-01

    Sensory neurons in aging mammals undergo changes in anatomy, physiology and gene expression that correlate with reduced sensory perception. In this study we compared young and aged mice to identify proteins that might contribute to this loss of sensation. We first show using behavioral testing that thermal sensitivity in aged male and female mice is reduced. Expression of sodium channel (Nav1.8 and Nav1.9) and transient receptor potential vanilloid (TRPV) channels in DRG and peripheral nerves of young and old male mice was then examined. Immunoblotting and RT-PCR assays showed reduced Nav1.8 levels in aged mice. No change was measured in TRPV1 mRNA levels in DRG though TRPV1 protein appeared reduced in the DRG and peripheral nerves. The GFRα3 receptor, which binds the growth factor artemin and is expressed by TRPV1-positive neurons, was also decreased in the DRG of aged animals. These findings indicate that loss of thermal sensitivity in aging animals may result from a decreased level of TRPV1 and Nav1.8 and decreased trophic support that inhibits efficient transport of channel proteins to peripheral afferents. PMID:15979214

  11. Musings on the wanderer: what's new in our understanding of vago-vagal reflexes?: II. Integration of afferent signaling from the viscera by the nodose ganglia.

    PubMed

    Browning, Kirsteen N; Mendelowitz, David

    2003-01-01

    To understand vago-vagal reflexes, one must have an appreciation of the events surrounding the encoding, integration, and central transfer of peripheral sensations by vagal afferent neurons. A large body of work has shown that vagal afferent neurons have nonuniform properties and that distinct subpopulations of neurons exist within the nodose ganglia. These sensory neurons display a considerable degree of plasticity; electrophysiological, pharmacological, and neurochemical properties have all been shown to alter after peripheral tissue injury. The validity of claims of selective recordings from populations of neurons activated by peripheral stimuli may be diminished, however, by the recent demonstration that stimulation of a subpopulation of nodose neurons can enhance the activity of unstimulated neuronal neighbors. To better understand the neurophysiological processes occurring after vagal afferent stimulation, it is essential that the electrophysiological, pharmacological, and neurochemical properties of nodose neurons are correlated with their sensory function or, at the very least, with their specific innervation target.

  12. The role of the ETS gene PEA3 in the development of motor and sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Ladle, David R; Frank, Eric

    2002-12-01

    The ETS family of transcription factors includes two members, ER81 and PEA3, which are expressed in groups of sensory and motor neurons supplying individual muscles. To investigate a possible role of these genes in determining sensory and/or motor neuron phenotype, we studied mice in which each of these genes was deleted. In contrast to the deletion of ER81, which blocks the formation of projections from muscle sensory neurons to motor neurons in the spinal cord, deletion of PEA3 causes no obvious effects on sensory neurons or on their synaptic connections with motor neurons. PEA3 does play a major role in the formation of some brachial motoneurons however. Motoneurons innervating the cutaneous maximus muscle, which are normally PEA3(+), fail to develop normally so that postnatally the muscle is innervated by few motoneurons and is severely atrophic. Other studies suggest that these motoneurons initially appear during development but fail to contact their normal muscle targets.

  13. Sensory-evoked perturbations of locomotor activity by sparse sensory input: a computational study

    PubMed Central

    Brownstone, Robert M.

    2015-01-01

    Sensory inputs from muscle, cutaneous, and joint afferents project to the spinal cord, where they are able to affect ongoing locomotor activity. Activation of sensory input can initiate or prolong bouts of locomotor activity depending on the identity of the sensory afferent activated and the timing of the activation within the locomotor cycle. However, the mechanisms by which afferent activity modifies locomotor rhythm and the distribution of sensory afferents to the spinal locomotor networks have not been determined. Considering the many sources of sensory inputs to the spinal cord, determining this distribution would provide insights into how sensory inputs are integrated to adjust ongoing locomotor activity. We asked whether a sparsely distributed set of sensory inputs could modify ongoing locomotor activity. To address this question, several computational models of locomotor central pattern generators (CPGs) that were mechanistically diverse and generated locomotor-like rhythmic activity were developed. We show that sensory inputs restricted to a small subset of the network neurons can perturb locomotor activity in the same manner as seen experimentally. Furthermore, we show that an architecture with sparse sensory input improves the capacity to gate sensory information by selectively modulating sensory channels. These data demonstrate that sensory input to rhythm-generating networks need not be extensively distributed. PMID:25673740

  14. Direct synaptic connections between superior colliculus afferents and thalamo-insular projection neurons in the feline suprageniculate nucleus: a double-labeling study with WGA-HRP and kainic acid.

    PubMed

    Hoshino, Kaeko; Horie, Masao; Nagy, Attila; Berényi, Antal; Benedek, György; Norita, Masao

    2010-01-01

    The suprageniculate nucleus (Sg) of the feline thalamus, which subserves largely unimodal sensory and orientation behavior, receives input from the deep layers of the superior colliculus (SC), and projects to the suprasylvian cortical areas, such as the anterior ectosylvian visual area and the insular visual area (IVA), which contain visually responsive neurons. Through a double tract-tracing procedure involving the injection of wheat germ agglutinin conjugated with horseradish peroxidase (WGA-HRP) into the IVA and the injection of kainic acid into the SC, this study sought to determine the nature of the synaptic relationship between the SC afferents and the thalamo-cortical projection neurons. WGA-HRP injections labeled numerous neurons in the Sg, while kainic acid injections destroyed many tectothalamic terminals in the Sg. The distributions of the WGA-HRP-labeled neurons and the degenerated axon terminals overlapped in the dorsal part of the Sg. Electron microscopic observations demonstrated that the degenerated axon terminals made synaptic contacts with the dendrites of the WGA-HRP-labeled neurons in this overlapping region of the Sg. These results provide the first anatomical evidence that the Sg may play a role in the key relay of visual information from the SC to the IVA, within an identified extrageniculo-cortical pathway.

  15. Localization of TRPV1 and P2X3 in unmyelinated and myelinated vagal afferents in the rat

    PubMed Central

    Hermes, Sam M.; Andresen, Michael C.; Aicher, Sue A.

    2016-01-01

    The vagus nerve is dominated by afferent fibers that convey sensory information from the viscera to the brain. Most vagal afferents are unmyelinated, slow-conducting C-fibers, while a smaller portion are myelinated, fast-conducting A-fibers. Vagal afferents terminate in the nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS) in the dorsal brainstem and regulate autonomic and respiratory reflexes, as well as ascending pathways throughout the brain. Vagal afferents form glutamatergic excitatory synapses with postsynaptic NTS neurons that are modulated by a variety of channels. The organization of vagal afferents with regard to fiber type and channels is not well understood. In the present study, we used tract tracing methods to identify distinct populations of vagal afferents to determine if key channels are selectively localized to specific groups of afferent fibers. Vagal afferents were labeled with isolectin B4 (IB4) or cholera toxin B (CTb) to detect unmyelinated and myelinated afferents, respectively. We find that TRPV1 channels are preferentially found in unmyelinated vagal afferents identified with IB4, with almost half of all IB4 fibers showing co-localization with TRPV1. These results agree with prior electrophysiological findings. In contrast, we found that the ATP-sensitive channel P2X3 is found in a subset of both myelinated and unmyelinated vagal afferent fibers. Specifically, 18% of IB4 and 23% of CTb afferents contained P2X3. The majority of CTb-ir vagal afferents contained neither channel. Since neither channel was found in all vagal afferents, there are likely further degrees of heterogeneity in the modulation of vagal afferent sensory input to the NTS beyond fiber type. PMID:26706222

  16. Presynaptic selection of afferent inflow in the spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Rudomin, P

    1999-01-01

    The synaptic effectiveness of sensory fibers ending in the spinal cord of vertebrates can be centrally controlled by means of specific sets of GABAergic interneurons that make axo-axonic synapses with the terminal arborizations of the afferent fibers. In the steady state, the intracellular concentration of chloride ions in these terminals is higher than that predicted from a passive distribution, because of an active transport mechanism. Following the release of GABA by spinal interneurons and activation of GABA(A) receptors in the afferent terminals, there is an outwardly directed efflux of chloride ions that produces primary afferent depolarization (PAD) and reduces transmitter release (presynaptic inhibition). Studies made by intrafiber recording of PAD, or by measuring changes in the intraspinal threshold of single afferent terminals (which is reduced during PAD), have further indicated that muscle and cutaneous afferents have distinctive, but modifiable PAD patterns in response to segmental and descending stimuli. This has suggested that PAD and presynaptic inhibition in the various types of afferents is mediated by separate sets of last-order GABAergic interneurons. Direct activation, by means of intraspinal microstimulation, of single or small groups of last-order PAD-mediating interneurons shows that the monosynaptic PAD elicited in Ia and Ib afferents can remain confined to some sets of the intraspinal collaterals and not spread to nearby collaterals. The local character of PAD allows cutaneous and descending inputs to selectively inhibit the PAD of segmental and ascending intraspinal collaterals of individual muscle spindle afferents. It thus seems that the intraspinal branches of the sensory fibers are not hard wired routes that diverge excitation to spinal neurons, but are instead dynamic pathways that can be centrally controlled to address information to selected neuronal targets. This feature appears to play an important role in the selection of

  17. Multilaminar networks of cortical neurons integrate common inputs from sensory thalamus.

    PubMed

    Morgenstern, Nicolás A; Bourg, Jacques; Petreanu, Leopoldo

    2016-08-01

    Neurons in the thalamorecipient layers of sensory cortices integrate thalamic and recurrent cortical input. Cortical neurons form fine-scale, functionally cotuned networks, but whether interconnected cortical neurons within a column process common thalamocortical inputs is unknown. We tested how local and thalamocortical connectivity relate to each other by analyzing cofluctuations of evoked responses in cortical neurons after photostimulation of thalamocortical axons. We found that connected pairs of pyramidal neurons in layer (L) 4 of mouse visual cortex share more inputs from the dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus than nonconnected pairs. Vertically aligned connected pairs of L4 and L2/3 neurons were also preferentially contacted by the same thalamocortical axons. Our results provide a circuit mechanism for the observed amplification of sensory responses by L4 circuits. They also show that sensory information is concurrently processed in L4 and L2/3 by columnar networks of interconnected neurons contacted by the same thalamocortical axons.

  18. Phasic activation of the locus coeruleus enhances responses of primary sensory cortical neurons to peripheral receptive field stimulation.

    PubMed

    Waterhouse, B D; Moises, H C; Woodward, D J

    1998-04-20

    In the present study we examined the effects of phasic activation of the nucleus locus coeruleus (LC) on transmission of somatosensory information to the rat cerebral cortex. The rationale for this investigation was based on earlier findings that local microiontophoretic application of the putative LC transmitter, norepinephrine (NE), had facilitating actions on cortical neuronal responses to excitatory and inhibitory synaptic stimuli and more recent microdialysis experiments that have demonstrated increases in cortical levels of NE following phasic or tonic activation of LC. Glass micropipets were used to record the extracellular activity of single neurons in the somatosensory cortex of halothane-anesthetized rats. Somatosensory afferent pathways were activated by threshold level mechanical stimulation of the glabrous skin on the contralateral forepaw. Poststimulus time histograms were used to quantitate cortical neuronal responses before and at various time intervals after preconditioning burst activation of the ipsilateral LC. Excitatory and postexcitatory inhibitory responses to forepaw stimulation were enhanced when preceded by phasic activation of LC at conditioning intervals of 200-500 ms. These effects were anatomically specific in that they were only observed upon stimulation of brainstem sites close to (>150 micron) or within LC and were pharmacologically specific in that they were not consistently observed in animals where the LC-NE system had been disrupted by 6-OHDA pretreatment. Overall, these data suggest that following phasic activation of the LC efferent system, the efficacy of signal transmission through sensory networks in mammalian brain is enhanced.

  19. Sensory Neurons Arouse C. elegans Locomotion via Both Glutamate and Neuropeptide Release

    PubMed Central

    Chatzigeorgiou, Marios; Hu, Zhitao; Schafer, William R.; Kaplan, Joshua M.

    2015-01-01

    C. elegans undergoes periods of behavioral quiescence during larval molts (termed lethargus) and as adults. Little is known about the circuit mechanisms that establish these quiescent states. Lethargus and adult locomotion quiescence is dramatically reduced in mutants lacking the neuropeptide receptor NPR-1. Here, we show that the aroused locomotion of npr-1 mutants results from the exaggerated activity in multiple classes of sensory neurons, including nociceptive (ASH), touch sensitive (ALM and PLM), and stretch sensing (DVA) neurons. These sensory neurons accelerate locomotion via both neuropeptide and glutamate release. The relative contribution of these sensory neurons to arousal differs between larval molts and adults. Our results suggest that a broad network of sensory neurons dictates transitions between aroused and quiescent behavioral states. PMID:26154367

  20. Early postnatal development of GABAergic presynaptic inhibition of Ia proprioceptive afferent connections in mouse spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Sonner, Patrick M; Ladle, David R

    2013-04-01

    Sensory feedback is critical for normal locomotion and adaptation to external perturbations during movement. Feedback provided by group Ia afferents influences motor output both directly through monosynaptic connections and indirectly through spinal interneuronal circuits. For example, the circuit responsible for reciprocal inhibition, which acts to prevent co-contraction of antagonist flexor and extensor muscles, is driven by Ia afferent feedback. Additionally, circuits mediating presynaptic inhibition can limit Ia afferent synaptic transmission onto central neuronal targets in a task-specific manner. These circuits can also be activated by stimulation of proprioceptive afferents. Rodent locomotion rapidly matures during postnatal development; therefore, we assayed the functional status of reciprocal and presynaptic inhibitory circuits of mice at birth and compared responses with observations made after 1 wk of postnatal development. Using extracellular physiological techniques from isolated and hemisected spinal cord preparations, we demonstrate that Ia afferent-evoked reciprocal inhibition is as effective at blocking antagonist motor neuron activation at birth as at 1 wk postnatally. In contrast, at birth conditioning stimulation of muscle nerve afferents failed to evoke presynaptic inhibition sufficient to block functional transmission at synapses between Ia afferents and motor neurons, even though dorsal root potentials could be evoked by stimulating the neighboring dorsal root. Presynaptic inhibition at this synapse was readily observed, however, at the end of the first postnatal week. These results indicate Ia afferent feedback from the periphery to central spinal circuits is only weakly gated at birth, which may provide enhanced sensitivity to peripheral feedback during early postnatal experiences.

  1. Dopaminergic Presynaptic Modulation of Nigral Afferents: Its Role in the Generation of Recurrent Bursting in Substantia Nigra Pars Reticulata Neurons

    PubMed Central

    de Jesús Aceves, José; Rueda-Orozco, Pavel E.; Hernández, Ricardo; Plata, Víctor; Ibañez-Sandoval, Osvaldo; Galarraga, Elvira; Bargas, José

    2011-01-01

    Previous work has shown the functions associated with activation of dopamine presynaptic receptors in some substantia nigra pars reticulata (SNr) afferents: (i) striatonigral terminals (direct pathway) posses presynaptic dopamine D1-class receptors whose action is to enhance inhibitory postsynaptic currents (IPSCs) and GABA transmission. (ii) Subthalamonigral terminals posses D1- and D2-class receptors where D1-class receptor activation enhances and D2-class receptor activation decreases excitatory postsynaptic currents. Here we report that pallidonigral afferents posses D2-class receptors (D3 and D4 types) that decrease inhibitory synaptic transmission via presynaptic modulation. No action of D1-class agonists was found on pallidonigral synapses. In contrast, administration of D1-receptor antagonists greatly decreased striatonigral IPSCs in the same preparation, suggesting that tonic dopamine levels help in maintaining the function of the striatonigral (direct) pathway. When both D3 and D4 type receptors were blocked, pallidonigral IPSCs increased in amplitude while striatonigral connections had no significant change, suggesting that tonic dopamine levels are repressing a powerful inhibition conveyed by pallidonigral synapses (a branch of the indirect pathway). We then blocked both D1- and D2-class receptors to acutely decrease direct pathway (striatonigral) and enhance indirect pathways (subthalamonigral and pallidonigral) synaptic force. The result was that most SNr projection neurons entered a recurrent bursting firing mode similar to that observed during Parkinsonism in both patients and animal models. These results raise the question as to whether the lack of dopamine in basal ganglia output nuclei is enough to generate some pathological signs of Parkinsonism. PMID:21347219

  2. Membrane stiffening by STOML3 facilitates mechanosensation in sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Qi, Yanmei; Andolfi, Laura; Frattini, Flavia; Mayer, Florian; Lazzarino, Marco; Hu, Jing

    2015-01-01

    Sensing force is crucial to maintain the viability of all living cells. Despite its fundamental importance, how force is sensed at the molecular level remains largely unknown. Here we show that stomatin-like protein-3 (STOML3) controls membrane mechanics by binding cholesterol and thus facilitates force transfer and tunes the sensitivity of mechano-gated channels, including Piezo channels. STOML3 is detected in cholesterol-rich lipid rafts. In mouse sensory neurons, depletion of cholesterol and deficiency of STOML3 similarly and interdependently attenuate mechanosensitivity while modulating membrane mechanics. In heterologous systems, intact STOML3 is required to maintain membrane mechanics to sensitize Piezo1 and Piezo2 channels. In C57BL/6N, but not STOML3−/− mice, tactile allodynia is attenuated by cholesterol depletion, suggesting that membrane stiffening by STOML3 is essential for mechanical sensitivity. Targeting the STOML3–cholesterol association might offer an alternative strategy for control of chronic pain. PMID:26443885

  3. Sympathetic preganglionic efferent and afferent neurons mediated by the greater splanchnic nerve in rabbit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Torigoe, Yasuhiro; Cernucan, Roxana D.; Nishimoto, Jo Ann S.; Blanks, Robert H. I.

    1985-01-01

    As a part of the study of the vestibular-autonomic pathways involved in motion sickness, the location and the morphology of preganglionic sympathetic neurons (PSNs) projecting via the greater splanchnic nerve were examined. Retrograde labeling of neurons was obtained by application of horseradish peroxidase to the cut end of the greater splanchnic nerve. Labeled PSNs were found, ipsilaterally, within the T1 to T11 spinal cord segments, with the highest density of neurons in T6. Most PSNs were located within the intermediolateral column, but a significant portion also occurred within the lateral funiculus, the intercalated region, and the central autonomic area; the proportion of labeling between the four regions depended on the spinal cord segment.

  4. Optogenetic activation of septal GABAergic afferents entrains neuronal firing in the medial habenula

    PubMed Central

    Choi, Kyuhyun; Lee, Youngin; Lee, Changwoo; Hong, Seokheon; Lee, Soonje; Kang, Shin Jung; Shin, Ki Soon

    2016-01-01

    The medial habenula (MHb) plays an important role in nicotine-related behaviors such as nicotine aversion and withdrawal. The MHb receives GABAergic input from the medial septum/diagonal band of Broca (MS/DB), yet the synaptic mechanism that regulates MHb activity is unclear. GABA (γ -aminobutyric acid) is a major inhibitory neurotransmitter activating both GABAA receptors and GABAB receptors. Depending on intracellular chloride concentration, however, GABAA receptors also function in an excitatory manner. In the absence of various synaptic inputs, we found that MHb neurons displayed spontaneous tonic firing at a rate of about ~4.4 Hz. Optogenetic stimulation of MS/DB inputs to the MHb evoked GABAA receptor-mediated synaptic currents, which produced stimulus-locked neuronal firing. Subsequent delayed yet lasting activation of GABAB receptors attenuated the intrinsic tonic firing. Consequently, septal GABAergic input alone orchestrates both excitatory GABAA and inhibitory GABAB receptors, thereby entraining the firing of MHb neurons. PMID:27703268

  5. Diabetic polyneuropathy, sensory neurons, nuclear structure and spliceosome alterations: a role for CWC22

    PubMed Central

    Kobayashi, Masaki; Chandrasekhar, Ambika; Cheng, Chu; Martinez, Jose A.; Ng, Hilarie; de la Hoz, Cristiane

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT Unique deficits in the function of adult sensory neurons as part of their early neurodegeneration might account for progressive polyneuropathy during chronic diabetes mellitus. Here, we provide structural and functional evidence for aberrant pre-mRNA splicing in a chronic type 1 model of experimental diabetic polyneuropathy (DPN). Cajal bodies (CBs), unique nuclear substructures involved in RNA splicing, increased in number in diabetic sensory neurons, but their expected colocalization with survival motor neuron (SMN) proteins was reduced – a mislocalization described in motor neurons of spinal muscular atrophy. Small nuclear ribonucleoprotein particles (snRNPs), also participants in the spliceosome, had abnormal multiple nuclear foci unassociated with CBs, and their associated snRNAs were reduced. CWC22, a key spliceosome protein, was aberrantly upregulated in diabetic dorsal root ganglia (DRG), and impaired neuronal function. CWC22 attenuated sensory neuron plasticity, with knockdown in vitro enhancing their neurite outgrowth. Further, axonal delivery of CWC22 siRNA unilaterally to locally knock down the aberrant protein in diabetic nerves improved aspects of sensory function in diabetic mice. Collectively, our findings identify subtle but significant alterations in spliceosome structure and function, including dysregulated CBs and CWC22 overexpression, in diabetic sensory neurons that offer new ideas regarding diabetic sensory neurodegeneration in polyneuropathy. PMID:28250049

  6. Diabetic polyneuropathy, sensory neurons, nuclear structure and spliceosome alterations: a role for CWC22.

    PubMed

    Kobayashi, Masaki; Chandrasekhar, Ambika; Cheng, Chu; Martinez, Jose A; Ng, Hilarie; de la Hoz, Cristiane; Zochodne, Douglas W

    2017-03-01

    Unique deficits in the function of adult sensory neurons as part of their early neurodegeneration might account for progressive polyneuropathy during chronic diabetes mellitus. Here, we provide structural and functional evidence for aberrant pre-mRNA splicing in a chronic type 1 model of experimental diabetic polyneuropathy (DPN). Cajal bodies (CBs), unique nuclear substructures involved in RNA splicing, increased in number in diabetic sensory neurons, but their expected colocalization with survival motor neuron (SMN) proteins was reduced - a mislocalization described in motor neurons of spinal muscular atrophy. Small nuclear ribonucleoprotein particles (snRNPs), also participants in the spliceosome, had abnormal multiple nuclear foci unassociated with CBs, and their associated snRNAs were reduced. CWC22, a key spliceosome protein, was aberrantly upregulated in diabetic dorsal root ganglia (DRG), and impaired neuronal function. CWC22 attenuated sensory neuron plasticity, with knockdown in vitro enhancing their neurite outgrowth. Further, axonal delivery of CWC22 siRNA unilaterally to locally knock down the aberrant protein in diabetic nerves improved aspects of sensory function in diabetic mice. Collectively, our findings identify subtle but significant alterations in spliceosome structure and function, including dysregulated CBs and CWC22 overexpression, in diabetic sensory neurons that offer new ideas regarding diabetic sensory neurodegeneration in polyneuropathy.

  7. Mechanism of Ghrelin-Induced Gastric Contractions in Suncus murinus (House Musk Shrew): Involvement of Intrinsic Primary Afferent Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Mondal, Anupom; Aizawa, Sayaka; Sakata, Ichiro; Goswami, Chayon; Oda, Sen-ichi; Sakai, Takafumi

    2013-01-01

    Here, we have reported that motilin can induce contractions in a dose-dependent manner in isolated Suncus murinus (house musk shrew) stomach. We have also shown that after pretreatment with a low dose of motilin (10−10 M), ghrelin also induces gastric contractions at levels of 10−10 M to 10−7 M. However, the neural mechanism of ghrelin action in the stomach has not been fully revealed. In the present study, we studied the mechanism of ghrelin-induced contraction in vitro using a pharmacological method. The responses to ghrelin in the stomach were almost completely abolished by hexamethonium and were significantly suppressed by the administration of phentolamine, prazosin, ondansetron, and naloxone. Additionally, N-nitro-l-arginine methylester significantly potentiated the contractions. Importantly, the mucosa is essential for ghrelin-induced, but not motilin-induced, gastric contractions. To evaluate the involvement of intrinsic primary afferent neurons (IPANs), which are multiaxonal neurons that pass signals from the mucosa to the myenteric plexus, we examined the effect of the IPAN-related pathway on ghrelin-induced contractions and found that pretreatment with adenosine and tachykinergic receptor 3 antagonists (SR142801) significantly eliminated the contractions and GR113808 (5-hydroxytryptamine receptor 4 antagonist) almost completely eliminated it. The results indicate that ghrelin stimulates and modulates suncus gastric contractions through cholinergic, adrenergic, serotonergic, opioidergic neurons and nitric oxide synthases in the myenteric plexus. The mucosa is also important for ghrelin-induced gastric contractions, and IPANs may be the important interneurons that pass the signal from the mucosa to the myenteric plexus. PMID:23565235

  8. Sensory experience regulates cortical inhibition by inducing IGF1 in VIP neurons.

    PubMed

    Mardinly, A R; Spiegel, I; Patrizi, A; Centofante, E; Bazinet, J E; Tzeng, C P; Mandel-Brehm, C; Harmin, D A; Adesnik, H; Fagiolini, M; Greenberg, M E

    2016-03-17

    Inhibitory neurons regulate the adaptation of neural circuits to sensory experience, but the molecular mechanisms by which experience controls the connectivity between different types of inhibitory neuron to regulate cortical plasticity are largely unknown. Here we show that exposure of dark-housed mice to light induces a gene program in cortical vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP)-expressing neurons that is markedly distinct from that induced in excitatory neurons and other subtypes of inhibitory neuron. We identify Igf1 as one of several activity-regulated genes that are specific to VIP neurons, and demonstrate that IGF1 functions cell-autonomously in VIP neurons to increase inhibitory synaptic input onto these neurons. Our findings further suggest that in cortical VIP neurons, experience-dependent gene transcription regulates visual acuity by activating the expression of IGF1, thus promoting the inhibition of disinhibitory neurons and affecting inhibition onto cortical pyramidal neurons.

  9. The effects of desensitization of capsaicin-sensitive afferent neurons on the microcirculation in the stomach in rats depend on the blood glucocorticoid hormone level.

    PubMed

    Podvigina, T T; Bobryshev, P Yu; Bagaeva, T R; Mal'tsev, N A; Levkovich, Yu I; Filaretova, L P

    2009-07-01

    The effects of densensitization of capsaicin-sensitive afferent neurons on the microcirculation in the stomach were studied before and after administration of indomethacin at an ulcerogenic dose in adrenalectomized rats receiving and not receiving replacement therapy with corticosterone and in sham-operated animals. Measures of the microcirculation consisted of blood flow rates in microvessels in the submucous layer of the stomach and the diameter and permeability of microvessels in the mucosa. Desensitization of capsaicin-sensitive afferent neurons was performed by administration of capsaicin at a dose of 100 mg/kg for two weeks and adrenalectomy one week before the experiment. Blood flow rates in microvessels and microvessel diameters were assessed in non-anesthetized rats by direct video recording methods using a special optical system with a contact dark-field epiobjective. Administration of indomethacin at an ulcerogenic dose led to decreases in blood flow rate in microvessels in the submucous layer, dilation of superficial microvessels in the mucosa of the stomach, and an increase in their permeability. Desensitization of capsaicin-sensitive neurons potentiated indomethacin-induced impairments to the microcirculation in the submucous layer and the mucosa of the stomach. These effects of densensitization were significantly enhanced in conditions of glucocorticoid hormone deficiency. Thus, glucocorticoid hormones have favorable effects on the gastric microcirculation in rats with desensitization of capsaicin-sensitive afferent neurons.

  10. Anesthesia and brain sensory processing: impact on neuronal responses in a female songbird

    PubMed Central

    Karino, G.; George, I.; Loison, L.; Heyraud, C.; De Groof, G.; Hausberger, M.; Cousillas, H.

    2016-01-01

    Whether anesthesia impacts brain sensory processing is a highly debated and important issue. There is a general agreement that anesthesia tends to diminish neuronal activity, but its potential impact on neuronal “tuning” is still an open question. Here we show, based on electrophysiological recordings in the primary auditory area of a female songbird, that anesthesia induces neuronal responses towards biologically irrelevant sounds and prevents the seasonal neuronal tuning towards functionally relevant species-specific song elements. PMID:27966648

  11. Development, plasticity and modulation of visceral afferents

    PubMed Central

    Christianson, Julie A.; Bielefeldt, Klaus; Altier, Christophe; Cenac, Nicolas; Davis, Brian M.; Gebhart, Gerald F.; High, Karin W.; Kollarik, Marian; Randich, Alan; Undem, Brad; Vergnolle, Nathalie

    2010-01-01

    Visceral pain is the most common reason for doctor visits in the US. Like somatic pain, virtually all visceral pain sensations begin with the activation of primary sensory neurons innervating the viscera and/or the blood vessels associated with these structures. Visceral afferents also play a central role in tissue homeostasis. Recent studies show that in addition to monitoring the state of the viscera, they perform efferent functions through the release of small molecules (e.g. peptides like CGRP) that can drive inflammation, thereby contributing to the development of visceral pathologies (e.g. diabetes Razavi, R., Chan, Y., Afifiyan, F.N., Liu, X.J., Wan, X., Yantha, J., Tsui, H., Tang, L., Tsai, S., Santamaria, P., Driver, J.P., Serreze, D., Salter, M.W., Dosch, H.M., 2006. TRPV1+ sensory neurons control beta cell stress and islet inflammation in autoimmune diabetes, Cell 127 1123–1135). Visceral afferents are heterogeneous with respect to their anatomy, neurochemistry and function. They are also highly plastic in that their cellular environment continuously influences their response properties. This plasticity makes them susceptible to long-term changes that may contribute significantly to the development of persistent pain states such as those associated with irritable bowel syndrome, pancreatitis, and visceral cancers. This review examines recent insights into visceral afferent anatomy and neurochemistry and how neonatal insults can affect the function of these neurons in the adult. New approaches to the treatment of visceral pain, which focus on primary afferents, will also be discussed. PMID:19150371

  12. Functional transplant of photoactivated adenylyl cyclase (PAC) into Aplysia sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Nagahama, Tatsumi; Suzuki, Takeshi; Yoshikawa, Shinya; Iseki, Mineo

    2007-09-01

    In neural mechanisms of animal learning, intracellular cAMP has been known to play an important role. In the present experiments we attempted functional transplant of a photoactivated adenylyl cyclase (PAC) isolated from Euglena into Aplysia neurons, and explored whether PAC can produce cAMP in the neurons by light stimulation. Serotonergic modulation of mechanoafferent sensory neurons in Aplysia pleural ganglia has been reported to increase intracellular cAMP level and promotes synaptic transmission to motor neurons by increasing spike width of sensory neurons. When cAMP was directly injected into the sensory neurons, spike amplitude temporarily decreased while spike width temporarily increased. This effect was not substituted by injection of 5'AMP, and maintained longer in a bath solution containing IBMX, the phosphodiesterase inhibitor. We, therefore, explored these changes as indicators of appearance of the PAC function. PAC or the PAC expression vector (pNEX-PAC) was injected into cell bodies of sensory neurons. Spike amplitude decreased in both cases and spike width increased in the PAC injection when the neurons were stimulated with light, suggesting that the transplanted PAC works well in Aplysia neurons. These results indicate that we can control cAMP production in specific neurons with light by the functional transplant of PAC.

  13. Kv7.2 regulates the function of peripheral sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    King, Chih H.; Lancaster, Eric; Salomon, Daniela; Peles, Elior; Scherer, Steven S.

    2014-01-01

    The Kv7 (KCNQ) family of voltage-gated K+ channels regulates cellular excitability. The functional role of Kv7.2 has been hampered by the lack of a viable Kcnq2-null animal model. In this study, we generated homozygous Kcnq2-null sensory neurons using the Cre-Lox system; in these mice, Kv7.2 expression is absent in the peripheral sensory neurons, whereas the expression of other molecular components of nodes (including Kv7.3), paranodes, and juxtaparanodes is not altered. The conditional Kcnq2-null animals exhibit normal motor performance, but have increased thermal hyperalgesia and mechanical allodynia. Whole cell patch recording technique demonstrates that Kcnq2-null sensory neurons have increased excitability and reduced spike frequency adaptation. Taken together, our results suggest that the loss of Kv7.2 activity increases the excitability of primary sensory neurons. PMID:24687876

  14. Artemin overexpression in skin enhances expression of TRPV1 and TRPA1 in cutaneous sensory neurons and leads to behavioral sensitivity to heat and cold.

    PubMed

    Elitt, Christopher M; McIlwrath, Sabrina L; Lawson, Jeffery J; Malin, Sacha A; Molliver, Derek C; Cornuet, Pamela K; Koerber, H Richard; Davis, Brian M; Albers, Kathryn M

    2006-08-16

    Artemin, a neuronal survival factor in the glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor family, binds the glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored protein GFRalpha3 and the receptor tyrosine kinase Ret. Expression of the GFRalpha3 receptor is primarily restricted to the peripheral nervous system and is found in a subpopulation of nociceptive sensory neurons of the dorsal root ganglia (DRGs) that coexpress the Ret and TrkA receptor tyrosine kinases and the thermosensitive channel TRPV1. To determine how artemin affects sensory neuron properties, transgenic mice that overexpress artemin in skin keratinocytes (ART-OE mice) were analyzed. Expression of artemin caused a 20.5% increase in DRG neuron number and increased the level of mRNA encoding GFRalpha3, TrkA, TRPV1, and the putative noxious cold-detecting channel TRPA1. Nearly all GFRalpha3-positive neurons expressed TRPV1 immunoreactivity, and most of these neurons were also positive for TRPA1. Interestingly, acid-sensing ion channel (ASIC) 1, 2a, 2b, and 3 mRNAs were decreased in the DRG, and this reduction was strongest in females. Analysis of sensory neuron physiological properties using an ex vivo preparation showed that cutaneous C-fiber nociceptors of ART-OE mice had reduced heat thresholds and increased firing rates in response to a heat ramp. No change in mechanical threshold was detected. Behavioral testing of ART-OE mice showed that they had increased sensitivity to both heat and noxious cold. These results indicate that the level of artemin in the skin modulates gene expression and response properties of afferents that project to the skin and that these changes lead to behavioral sensitivity to both hot and cold stimuli.

  15. Local control of information flow in segmental and ascending collaterals of single afferents.

    PubMed

    Lomelí, J; Quevedo, J; Linares, P; Rudomin, P

    1998-10-08

    In the vertebrate spinal cord, the activation of GABA(gamma-amino-butyric acid)-releasing interneurons that synapse with intraspinal terminals of sensory fibres leading into the central nervous system (afferent fibres) produces primary afferent depolarization and presynaptic inhibition. It is not known to what extent these presynaptic mechanisms allow a selective control of information transmitted through specific sets of intraspinal branches of individual afferents. Here we study the local nature of the presynaptic control by measuring primary afferent depolarization simultaneously in two intraspinal collaterals of the same muscle spindle afferent. One of these collaterals ends at the L6-L7 segmental level in the intermediate nucleus, and the other ascends to segment L3 within Clarke's column, the site of origin of spinocerebellar neurons. Our results indicate that there are central mechanisms that are able to affect independently the synaptic effectiveness of segmental and ascending collaterals of individual muscle spindle afferents. Focal control of presynaptic inhibition thus allows the intraspinal branches of afferent fibres to function as a dynamic assembly that can be fractionated to convey information to selected neuronal targets. This may be a mechanism by which different spinal postsynaptic targets that are coupled by sensory input from a common source could be uncoupled.

  16. Effects of antidromic discharges in crayfish primary afferents.

    PubMed

    Cattaert, Daniel; Bévengut, Michelle

    2002-10-01

    Contrary to orthodromic spikes that are generated in sensory organs and conveyed to CNS, antidromic spikes are generated in the axon terminals of the sensory neurons within the CNS and are conveyed to the peripheral sensory organ. Antidromic discharges are observed in primary afferent neurons of both vertebrates and invertebrates and seem to be related to the rhythmic activity of central neural networks. In this study, we analyzed the effect of antidromic discharges on the sensory activity of a leg proprioceptor in in vitro preparations of the crayfish CNS. Intracellular microelectrodes were used both to record the orthodromic spikes and to elicit antidromic spikes by injecting squares pulses of depolarizing current at various frequencies. Experiments were performed on the three types of identified sensory afferents (tonic, phasotonic, and phasic). The main results showed a reduction of the firing frequency of the orthodromic activity in 82% of the tested afferents. In tonic afferents, during their occurrences and according to their frequency, antidromic spikes or bursts reduced or suppressed the orthodromic activity. Following their terminations, they also induced a silent period and a gradual recovery of the orthodromic activity, both of which increased as the duration and the frequency of the antidromic bursts increased. In phasotonic and phasic afferents, antidromic bursts reduced or suppressed the phasic responses as their frequency and durations increased. In phasotonic afferents, if elicited prior to the movements, long-duration bursts with increasing frequency reduced more rapidly the tonic background activity than the phasic one whereas short-duration bursts at high frequency produced strong decreases of both. The effect of antidromic bursts accumulated when they are repetitively elicited. Antidromic bursts induced a much larger decrease of the sensory activity than adaptation alone. The occurrences of antidromic spikes or bursts may have a functional role

  17. Identification of cerebellin2 in chick and its preferential expression by subsets of developing sensory neurons and their targets in the dorsal horn.

    PubMed

    Yang, Mao; Cagle, Michael C; Honig, Marcia G

    2010-07-15

    The cerebellins are a family of four secreted proteins, two of which, Cbln1 and Cbln3, play an important role in the formation and maintenance of parallel fiber-Purkinje cell synapses. We have identified the chicken homologue of Cbln2 and, through the use of in situ hybridization, shown that it is expressed by specific subsets of neurons in the dorsal root ganglia (DRGs) and spinal cord starting shortly after those neurons are generated. In the developing spinal cord, Cbln2 is highly expressed by dI1, dI3, dI5, and dILB dorsal interneurons and to a lesser extent by dI2, dI4, dI6, and dILA dorsal interneurons, but not by ventral (v0-v3) interneurons. After the spinal cord has matured and neurons have migrated to their final destinations, Cbln2 is abundant in the dorsal horn. In the DRGs, Cbln2 is expressed by TrkB+ and TrkC+ sensory neurons, but not by TrkA+ sensory neurons. Interestingly, regions of the spinal cord where TrkB+ and TrkC+ afferents terminate (i.e., laminae II, III, IV, and VI) exhibit the highest levels of Cbln2 expression. Cbln2 is also expressed by preganglionic sympathetic neurons and their targets in the sympathetic chain ganglia. Thus, the results show that Cbln2 is frequently expressed by synaptically connected neuronal populations. This, in turn, raises the possibility that if Cbln2, like Cbln1, plays a role in the formation and maintenance of synapses, it may somehow mediate bi-directional communication between discrete populations of neurons and their appropriate neuronal targets.

  18. Identification of Cerebellin2 in chick and its preferential expression by subsets of developing sensory neurons and their targets in the dorsal horn

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Mao; Cagle, Michael C.; Honig, Marcia G.

    2010-01-01

    The cerebellins are a family of four secreted proteins, two of which, Cbln1 and Cbln3, play an important role in the formation and maintenance of parallel fiber–Purkinje cell synapses. We have identified the chicken homologue of Cbln2 and, through the use of in situ hybridization, shown that it is expressed by specific subsets of neurons in the dorsal root ganglia (DRGs) and spinal cord starting shortly after those neurons are generated. In the developing spinal cord, Cbln2 is highly expressed by dI1, dI3, dI5, and dILB dorsal interneurons, to a lesser extent by dI2, dI4, dI6, and dILA dorsal interneurons, but not by ventral (v0 – v3) interneurons. After the spinal cord has matured and neurons have migrated to their final destinations, Cbln2 is abundant in the dorsal horn. In the DRGs, Cbln2 is expressed by TrkB+ and TrkC+ sensory neurons, but not by TrkA+ sensory neurons. Interestingly, regions of the spinal cord where TrkB+ and TrkC+ afferents terminate (i. e. laminae II, III, IV, and VI), exhibit the highest levels of Cbln2 expression. Cbln2 is also expressed by preganglionic sympathetic neurons and their targets in the sympathetic chain ganglia. Thus, the results show that Cbln2 is frequently expressed by synaptically connected neuronal populations. This, in turn, raises the possibility that if Cbln2, like Cbln1, plays a role in the formation and maintenance of synapses, it may somehow mediate bi-directional communication between discrete populations of neurons and their appropriate neuronal targets. PMID:20506477

  19. The critical period for peripheral specification of dorsal root ganglion neurons is related to the period of sensory neurogenesis

    SciTech Connect

    Smith, C.L. )

    1990-12-01

    Thoracic sensory neurons in bullfrog tadpoles can be induced to form connections typical of brachial sensory neurons by transplanting thoracic ganglia to the branchial level at stages when some thoracic sensory neurons already have formed connections. In order to find out how many postmitotic sensory neurons survive transplantation, ({sup 3}H)thymidine was administered to tadpoles in which thoracic ganglia were transplanted to the brachial level unilaterally at stages VII to IX. Between 16 and 37% of the neurons in transplanted ganglia were unlabeled, as compared to 46 to 60% in unoperated ganglia. Transplanted ganglia contained fewer unlabeled neurons than corresponding unoperated ganglia, indicating that transplantation caused degeneration of postmitotic neurons. Therefore, a large fraction of the neurons that formed connections typical of brachial sensory neurons probably differentiated while they were at the brachial level.

  20. Body temperature dependency in baclofen-induced gastric acid secretion in rats relation to capsaicin-sensitive afferent neurons.

    PubMed

    Kato, S; Araki, H; Kawauchi, S; Takeuchi, K

    2001-03-16

    Body temperature dependency in gastric functional responses to baclofen, a GABA(B) agonist, such as acid secretion, mucosal blood flow (GMBF) and motor activity, was examined in urethane-anesthetized rats under normal (37+/-1 degrees C) and hypothermic (31+/-1 degrees C) conditions. A rat stomach was mounted in an ex-vivo chamber, perfused with saline, and the acid secretion was measured using a pH-stat method, simultaneously with GMBF by a laser Doppler flowmeter. Gastric motility was measured using a miniature balloon as intraluminal pressure recordings. Intravenous administration of baclofen significantly increased acid secretion at the doses > 0.3 mg/kg under hypothermic conditions, yet it caused a significant stimulation only at doses > 10 mg/kg under normothermic conditions. The increases in gastric motility and GMBF were similarly induced by baclofen, irrespective of whether the animals were subjected to normothermic or hypothermic conditions. These functional responses to baclofen under hypothermic conditions were totally attenuated by either bilateral vagotomy or atropine (3 mg/kg, s.c.). Baclofen at a lower dose (1 mg/kg i.v.) significantly increased the acid secretion even under normothermic conditions when the animals were subjected to chemical deafferenation of capsaicin-sensitive neurons or pretreatment with intracisternal injection of CGRP8-37 (30 ng/rat). These results suggest that 1) gastric effects of baclofen are dependent on body temperature in stimulating acid secretion but not GMBF or motor activity, 2) the acid stimulatory action of baclofen is enhanced under hypothermic conditions, and 3) the suppression of baclofen-induced acid response under normothermic conditions may be related to capsaicin-sensitive afferent neuronal activity, probably mediated by central release

  1. Limb-state information encoded by peripheral and central somatosensory neurons: implications for an afferent interface.

    PubMed

    Weber, Douglas J; London, Brian M; Hokanson, James A; Ayers, Christopher A; Gaunt, Robert A; Torres, Ricardo R; Zaaimi, Boubker; Miller, Lee E

    2011-10-01

    A major issue to be addressed in the development of neural interfaces for prosthetic control is the need for somatosensory feedback. Here, we investigate two possible strategies: electrical stimulation of either dorsal root ganglia (DRG) or primary somatosensory cortex (S1). In each approach, we must determine a model that reflects the representation of limb state in terms of neural discharge. This model can then be used to design stimuli that artificially activate the nervous system to convey information about limb state to the subject. Electrically activating DRG neurons using naturalistic stimulus patterns, modeled on recordings made during passive limb movement, evoked activity in S1 that was similar to that of the original movement. We also found that S1 neural populations could accurately discriminate different patterns of DRG stimulation across a wide range of stimulus pulse-rates. In studying the neural coding in S1, we also decoded the kinematics of active limb movement using multi-electrode recordings in the monkey. Neurons having both proprioceptive and cutaneous receptive fields contributed equally to this decoding. Some neurons were most informative of limb state in the recent past, but many others appeared to signal upcoming movements suggesting that they also were modulated by an efference copy signal. Finally, we show that a monkey was able to detect stimulation through a large percentage of electrodes implanted in area 2. We discuss the design of appropriate stimulus paradigms for conveying time-varying limb state information, and the relative merits and limitations of central and peripheral approaches.

  2. Antihyperalgesic effect of CB1 receptor activation involves the modulation of P2X3 receptor in the primary afferent neuron.

    PubMed

    Oliveira-Fusaro, Maria Cláudia Gonçalves; Zanoni, Cristiane Isabel Silva; Dos Santos, Gilson Gonçalves; Manzo, Luis Paulo; Araldi, Dionéia; Bonet, Ivan José Magayewski; Tambeli, Cláudia Herrera; Dias, Elayne Vieira; Parada, Carlos Amilcar

    2017-03-05

    Cannabinoid system is a potential target for pain control. Cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1) activation play a role in the analgesic effect of cannabinoids once it is expressed in primary afferent neurons. This study investigates whether the anti-hyperalgesic effect of CB1 receptor activation involves P2X3 receptor in primary afferent neurons. Mechanical hyperalgesia was evaluated by electronic von Frey test. Cannabinoid effect was evaluated using anandamide or ACEA, a non-selective or a selective CB1 receptor agonists, respectively; AM251, a CB1 receptor antagonist, and antisense ODN for CB1 receptor. Calcium imaging assay was performed to evaluated α,β-meATP-responsive cultured DRG neurons pretreated with ACEA. Anandamide or ACEA administered in peripheral tissue reduced the carrageenan-induced mechanical hyperalgesia. The reduction in the carrageenan-induced hyperalgesia induced by ACEA was completely reversed by administration of AM251 as well as by the intrathecal treatment with antisense ODN for CB1 receptor. Also, ACEA reduced the mechanical hyperalgesia induced by bradykinin and by α,β-meATP, a P2X3 receptor non-selective agonist, but not by tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α), interleukin-1 beta (IL-1β) and chemokine-induced chemoattractant-1 (CINC-1). Finally, CB1 receptors are co-localized with P2X3 receptors in DRG small-diameter neurons and the treatment with ACEA reduced the number of α,β-meATP-responsive cultured DRG neurons. Our data suggest that the analgesic effect of CB1 receptor activation is mediated by a negative modulation of the P2X3 receptor in the primary afferent neurons.

  3. Peptidergic CGRPα primary sensory neurons encode heat and itch and tonically suppress sensitivity to cold.

    PubMed

    McCoy, Eric S; Taylor-Blake, Bonnie; Street, Sarah E; Pribisko, Alaine L; Zheng, Jihong; Zylka, Mark J

    2013-04-10

    Calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) is a classic molecular marker of peptidergic primary somatosensory neurons. Despite years of research, it is unknown whether these neurons are required to sense pain or other sensory stimuli. Here, we found that genetic ablation of CGRPα-expressing sensory neurons reduced sensitivity to noxious heat, capsaicin, and itch (histamine and chloroquine) and impaired thermoregulation but did not impair mechanosensation or β-alanine itch-stimuli associated with nonpeptidergic sensory neurons. Unexpectedly, ablation enhanced behavioral responses to cold stimuli and cold mimetics without altering peripheral nerve responses to cooling. Mechanistically, ablation reduced tonic and evoked activity in postsynaptic spinal neurons associated with TRPV1/heat, while profoundly increasing tonic and evoked activity in spinal neurons associated with TRPM8/cold. Our data reveal that CGRPα sensory neurons encode heat and itch and tonically cross-inhibit cold-responsive spinal neurons. Disruption of this crosstalk unmasks cold hypersensitivity, with mechanistic implications for neuropathic pain and temperature perception.

  4. State-dependent sculpting of olfactory sensory neurons is attributed to sensory enrichment, odor deprivation, and aging.

    PubMed

    Cavallin, Melissa Ann; Powell, Katelyn; Biju, K C; Fadool, Debra Ann

    2010-10-11

    Gene-targeted deletion of the predominant Shaker potassium channel, Kv1.3, in the mitral cells of the olfactory bulb, decreases the number of presynaptic, odorant receptor (OR)-identified olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs) in the main olfactory epithelium (MOE) and alters the nature of their postsynaptic connections to mitral cell targets. The current study examined whether OSN density was state-dependent by examining the impact of (1) odor enrichment, (2) sensory deprivation, and (3) aging upon the number of P2- or M72-expressing neurons. Histological approaches were used to quantify the number of OSNs across entire epithelia for wildtype (WT) vs. Kv1.3-null (KO) mice bred onto an ORtauLacZ reporter background. Following either odor enrichment or early unilateral naris-occlusion, the number of M72-expressing OSNs was significantly decreased in WT mice, but was unchanged in KO animals. Following naris-occlusion, the number of P2-expressing OSNs was decreased regardless of genotype. Animals that were reared to 2 years of age demonstrated loss of both P2- and M72-expressing OSNs in WT mice and a concomitant loss of only M72-expressing neurons in KO mice. These findings suggest that voltage-gated activity of the mitral cells is important for OSN plasticity, and can prevent neuronal loss via sensory- and OR-dependent mechanisms.

  5. Peripheral multidendritic sensory neurons are necessary for rhythmic locomotion behavior in Drosophila larvae

    PubMed Central

    Song, Wei; Onishi, Maika; Jan, Lily Yeh; Jan, Yuh Nung

    2007-01-01

    From breathing to walking, rhythmic movements encompass physiological processes important across the entire animal kingdom. It is thought by many that the generation of rhythmic behavior is operated by a central pattern generator (CPG) and does not require peripheral sensory input. Sensory feedback is, however, required to modify or coordinate the motor activity in response to the circumstances of actual movement. In contrast to this notion, we report here that sensory input is necessary for the generation of Drosophila larval locomotion, a form of rhythmic behavior. Blockage of all peripheral sensory inputs resulted in cessation of larval crawling. By conditionally silencing various subsets of larval peripheral sensory neurons, we identified the multiple dendritic (MD) neurons as the neurons essential for the generation of rhythmic peristaltic locomotion. By recording the locomotive motor activities, we further demonstrate that removal of MD neuron input disrupted rhythmic motor firing pattern in a way that prolonged the stereotyped segmental motor firing duration and prevented the propagation of posterior to anterior segmental motor firing. These findings reveal that MD sensory neuron input is a necessary component in the neural circuitry that generates larval locomotion. PMID:17360325

  6. The evolutionarily conserved transcription factor PRDM12 controls sensory neuron development and pain perception.

    PubMed

    Nagy, Vanja; Cole, Tiffany; Van Campenhout, Claude; Khoung, Thang M; Leung, Calvin; Vermeiren, Simon; Novatchkova, Maria; Wenzel, Daniel; Cikes, Domagoj; Polyansky, Anton A; Kozieradzki, Ivona; Meixner, Arabella; Bellefroid, Eric J; Neely, G Gregory; Penninger, Josef M

    2015-01-01

    PR homology domain-containing member 12 (PRDM12) belongs to a family of conserved transcription factors implicated in cell fate decisions. Here we show that PRDM12 is a key regulator of sensory neuronal specification in Xenopus. Modeling of human PRDM12 mutations that cause hereditary sensory and autonomic neuropathy (HSAN) revealed remarkable conservation of the mutated residues in evolution. Expression of wild-type human PRDM12 in Xenopus induced the expression of sensory neuronal markers, which was reduced using various human PRDM12 mutants. In Drosophila, we identified Hamlet as the functional PRDM12 homolog that controls nociceptive behavior in sensory neurons. Furthermore, expression analysis of human patient fibroblasts with PRDM12 mutations uncovered possible downstream target genes. Knockdown of several of these target genes including thyrotropin-releasing hormone degrading enzyme (TRHDE) in Drosophila sensory neurons resulted in altered cellular morphology and impaired nociception. These data show that PRDM12 and its functional fly homolog Hamlet are evolutionary conserved master regulators of sensory neuronal specification and play a critical role in pain perception. Our data also uncover novel pathways in multiple species that regulate evolutionary conserved nociception.

  7. Response properties of whisker-associated primary afferent neurons following infraorbital nerve transection with microsurgical repair in adult rats

    PubMed Central

    Xiao, Bo; Zanoun, Rami R.; Carvell, George E.; Washington, Kia M.

    2016-01-01

    The rodent whisker/trigeminal system, characterized by high spatial and temporal resolution, provides an experimental model for developing new therapies for improving sensory functions of damaged peripheral nerves. Here, we use controlled whisker stimulation and single-unit recordings of trigeminal ganglion cells to examine in detail the nature and time course of functional recovery of mechanoreceptive afferents following nerve transection with microsurgical repair of the infraorbital nerve (ION) branch of the trigeminal nerve in adult rats. Response measures include rapid vs. slow adaptation, firing rate, interspike intervals, latency, and angular (directional) tuning. Whisker-evoked responses, readily observable by 3 wk post-transection, recover progressively for at least the next 5 wk. All cells in transected animals, as in control cases, responded to deflections of single whiskers only, but topography within the ganglion was clearly disrupted. The time course and extent of recovery of quantitative response measures were receptor dependent. Cells displaying slowly adapting (SA) properties recovered more quickly than rapidly adapting (RA) populations, and for some response measures—notably evoked firing rates—closely approached or attained control levels by 8 wk post-transection. Angular tuning of RA cells was slightly better than control units, whereas SA tuning did not differ from control values. Nerve conduction times and refractory periods, examined separately using electrical stimulation of the ION, were slower than normal in all transected animals and poorly reflected recovery of whisker-evoked response latencies and interspike intervals. Results underscore the need for multiple therapeutic strategies that target different aspects of functional restitution following peripheral nerve injury. PMID:26792886

  8. Sensory feedback synchronizes motor and sensory neuronal networks in the neonatal rat spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Inácio, Ana R; Nasretdinov, Azat; Lebedeva, Julia; Khazipov, Roustem

    2016-10-07

    Early stages of sensorimotor system development in mammals are characterized by the occurrence of spontaneous movements. Whether and how these movements support correlated activity in developing sensorimotor spinal cord circuits remains unknown. Here we show highly correlated activity in sensory and motor zones in the spinal cord of neonatal rats in vivo. Both during twitches and complex movements, movement-generating bursts in motor zones are followed by bursts in sensory zones. Deafferentation does not affect activity in motor zones and movements, but profoundly suppresses activity bursts in sensory laminae and results in sensorimotor uncoupling, implying a primary role of sensory feedback in sensorimotor synchronization. This is further supported by largely dissociated activity in sensory and motor zones observed in the isolated spinal cord in vitro. Thus, sensory feedback resulting from spontaneous movements is instrumental for coordination of activity in developing sensorimotor spinal cord circuits.

  9. Regulation of motor patterns by the central spike-initiation zone of a sensory neuron.

    PubMed

    Daur, Nelly; Nadim, Farzan; Stein, Wolfgang

    2009-09-01

    Sensory feedback from muscles and peripheral sensors acts to initiate, tune or reshape motor activity according to the state of the body. Yet, sensory neurons often show low levels of activity even in the absence of sensory input. Here we examine the functional role of spontaneous low-frequency activity of such a sensory neuron. The anterior gastric receptor (AGR) is a muscle-tendon organ in the crab stomatogastric nervous system whose phasic activity shapes the well-characterized gastric mill (chewing) and pyloric (filtering) motor rhythms. Phasic activity is driven by a spike-initiation zone near the innervated muscle. We demonstrate that AGR possesses a second spike-initiation zone, which is located spatially distant from the innervated muscle in a central section of the axon. This initiation zone generates tonic activity and is responsible for the spontaneous activity of AGR in vivo, but does not code sensory information. Rather, it is sensitive to the neuromodulator octopamine. A computational model indicates that the activity at this initiation zone is not caused by excitatory input from another neuron, but generated intrinsically. This tonic activity is functionally relevant, because it modifies the activity state of the gastric mill motor circuit and changes the pyloric rhythm. The sensory function of AGR is not impaired as phasic activity suppresses spiking at the central initiation zone. Our results thus demonstrate that sensory neurons are not mere reporters of sensory signals. Neuromodulators can elicit non-sensory coding activity in these neurons that shapes the state of the motor system.

  10. Inputs from regularly and irregularly discharging vestibular nerve afferents to secondary neurons in squirrel monkey vestibular nuclei. III. Correlation with vestibulospinal and vestibuloocular output pathways

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Boyle, R.; Goldberg, J. M.; Highstein, S. M.

    1992-01-01

    1. A previous study measured the relative contributions made by regularly and irregularly discharging afferents to the monosynaptic vestibular nerve (Vi) input of individual secondary neurons located in and around the superior vestibular nucleus of barbiturate-anesthetized squirrel monkeys. Here, the analysis is extended to more caudal regions of the vestibular nuclei, which are a major source of both vestibuloocular and vestibulospinal pathways. As in the previous study, antidromic stimulation techniques are used to classify secondary neurons as oculomotor or spinal projecting. In addition, spinal-projecting neurons are distinguished by their descending pathways, their termination levels in the spinal cord, and their collateral projections to the IIIrd nucleus. 2. Monosynaptic excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs) were recorded intracellularly from secondary neurons as shocks of increasing strength were applied to Vi. Shocks were normalized in terms of the threshold (T) required to evoke field potentials in the vestibular nuclei. As shown previously, the relative contribution of irregular afferents to the total monosynaptic Vi input of each secondary neuron can be expressed as a %I index, the ratio (x100) of the relative sizes of the EPSPs evoked by shocks of 4 x T and 16 x T. 3. Antidromic stimulation was used to type secondary neurons as 1) medial vestibulospinal tract (MVST) cells projecting to spinal segments C1 or C6; 2) lateral vestibulospinal tract (LVST) cells projecting to C1, C6; or L1; 3) vestibulooculo-collic (VOC) cells projecting both to the IIIrd nucleus and by way of the MVST to C1 or C6; and 4) vestibuloocular (VOR) neurons projecting to the IIIrd nucleus but not to the spinal cord. Most of the neurons were located in the lateral vestibular nucleus (LV), including its dorsal (dLV) and ventral (vLV) divisions, and adjacent parts of the medial (MV) and descending nuclei (DV). Cells receiving quite different proportions of their direct inputs

  11. Opening of pannexin- and connexin-based channels increases the excitability of nodose ganglion sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Retamal, Mauricio A.; Alcayaga, Julio; Verdugo, Christian A.; Bultynck, Geert; Leybaert, Luc; Sáez, Pablo J.; Fernández, Ricardo; León, Luis E.; Sáez, Juan C.

    2014-01-01

    Satellite glial cells (SGCs) are the main glia in sensory ganglia. They surround neuronal bodies and form a cap that prevents the formation of chemical or electrical synapses between neighboring neurons. SGCs have been suggested to establish bidirectional paracrine communication with sensory neurons. However, the molecular mechanism involved in this cellular communication is unknown. In the central nervous system (CNS), astrocytes present connexin43 (Cx43) hemichannels and pannexin1 (Panx1) channels, and the opening of these channels allows the release of signal molecules, such as ATP and glutamate. We propose that these channels could play a role in glia-neuron communication in sensory ganglia. Therefore, we studied the expression and function of Cx43 and Panx1 in rat and mouse nodose-petrosal-jugular complexes (NPJcs) using confocal immunofluorescence, molecular and electrophysiological techniques. Cx43 and Panx1 were detected in SGCs and in sensory neurons, respectively. In the rat and mouse, the electrical activity of vagal nerve increased significantly after nodose neurons were exposed to a Ca2+/Mg2+-free solution, a condition that increases the open probability of Cx hemichannels. This response was partially mimicked by a cell-permeable peptide corresponding to the last 10 amino acids of Cx43 (TAT-Cx43CT). Enhanced neuronal activity was reduced by Cx hemichannel, Panx1 channel and P2X7 receptor blockers. Moreover, the role of Panx1 was confirmed in NPJc, because in those from Panx1 knockout mice showed a reduced increase of neuronal activity induced by Ca2+/Mg2+-free extracellular conditions. The data suggest that Cx hemichannels and Panx channels serve as paracrine communication pathways between SGCs and neurons by modulating the excitability of sensory neurons. PMID:24999316

  12. Opening of pannexin- and connexin-based channels increases the excitability of nodose ganglion sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Retamal, Mauricio A; Alcayaga, Julio; Verdugo, Christian A; Bultynck, Geert; Leybaert, Luc; Sáez, Pablo J; Fernández, Ricardo; León, Luis E; Sáez, Juan C

    2014-01-01

    Satellite glial cells (SGCs) are the main glia in sensory ganglia. They surround neuronal bodies and form a cap that prevents the formation of chemical or electrical synapses between neighboring neurons. SGCs have been suggested to establish bidirectional paracrine communication with sensory neurons. However, the molecular mechanism involved in this cellular communication is unknown. In the central nervous system (CNS), astrocytes present connexin43 (Cx43) hemichannels and pannexin1 (Panx1) channels, and the opening of these channels allows the release of signal molecules, such as ATP and glutamate. We propose that these channels could play a role in glia-neuron communication in sensory ganglia. Therefore, we studied the expression and function of Cx43 and Panx1 in rat and mouse nodose-petrosal-jugular complexes (NPJcs) using confocal immunofluorescence, molecular and electrophysiological techniques. Cx43 and Panx1 were detected in SGCs and in sensory neurons, respectively. In the rat and mouse, the electrical activity of vagal nerve increased significantly after nodose neurons were exposed to a Ca(2+)/Mg(2+)-free solution, a condition that increases the open probability of Cx hemichannels. This response was partially mimicked by a cell-permeable peptide corresponding to the last 10 amino acids of Cx43 (TAT-Cx43CT). Enhanced neuronal activity was reduced by Cx hemichannel, Panx1 channel and P2X7 receptor blockers. Moreover, the role of Panx1 was confirmed in NPJc, because in those from Panx1 knockout mice showed a reduced increase of neuronal activity induced by Ca(2+)/Mg(2+)-free extracellular conditions. The data suggest that Cx hemichannels and Panx channels serve as paracrine communication pathways between SGCs and neurons by modulating the excitability of sensory neurons.

  13. Isolation of sensory neurons of Aplysia californica for patch clamp recordings of glutamatergic currents.

    PubMed

    Fieber, Lynne A; Carlson, Stephen L; Kempsell, Andrew T; Greer, Justin B; Schmale, Michael C

    2013-07-10

    The marine gastropod mollusk Aplysia californica has a venerable history as a model of nervous system function, with particular significance in studies of learning and memory. The typical preparations for such studies are ones in which the sensory and motoneurons are left intact in a minimally dissected animal, or a technically elaborate neuronal co-culture of individual sensory and motoneurons. Less common is the isolated neuronal preparation in which small clusters of nominally homogeneous neurons are dissociated into single cells in short term culture. Such isolated cells are useful for the biophysical characterization of ion currents using patch clamp techniques, and targeted modulation of these conductances. A protocol for preparing such cultures is described. The protocol takes advantage of the easily identifiable glutamatergic sensory neurons of the pleural and buccal ganglia, and describes their dissociation and minimal maintenance in culture for several days without serum.

  14. Peripherally-Derived BDNF Promotes Regeneration of Ascending Sensory Neurons after Spinal Cord Injury

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Feng-He; Zhong, Jin-Hua; Zhou, Xin-Fu

    2008-01-01

    Background The blood brain barrier (BBB) and truncated trkB receptor on astrocytes prevent the penetration of brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) applied into the peripheral (PNS) and central nervous system (CNS) thus restrict its application in the treatment of nervous diseases. As BDNF is anterogradely transported by axons, we propose that peripherally derived and/or applied BDNF may act on the regeneration of central axons of ascending sensory neurons. Methodology/Principal Findings The present study aimed to test the hypothesis by using conditioning lesion of the sciatic nerve as a model to increase the expression of endogenous BDNF in sensory neurons and by injecting exogenous BDNF into the peripheral nerve or tissues. Here we showed that most of regenerating sensory neurons expressed BDNF and p-CREB but not p75NTR. Conditioning-lesion induced regeneration of ascending sensory neuron and the increase in the number of p-Erk positive and GAP-43 positive neurons was blocked by the injection of the BDNF antiserum in the periphery. Enhanced neurite outgrowth of dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons in vitro by conditioning lesion was also inhibited by the neutralization with the BDNF antiserum. The delivery of exogenous BDNF into the sciatic nerve or the footpad significantly increased the number of regenerating DRG neurons and regenerating sensory axons in the injured spinal cord. In a contusion injury model, an injection of BDNF into the footpad promoted recovery of motor functions. Conclusions/Significance Our data suggest that endogenous BDNF in DRG and spinal cord is required for the enhanced regeneration of ascending sensory neurons after conditioning lesion of sciatic nerve and peripherally applied BDNF may have therapeutic effects on the spinal cord injury. PMID:18320028

  15. Spinal sensory projection neuron responses to spinal cord stimulation are mediated by circuits beyond gate control

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Tianhe C.; Janik, John J.; Peters, Ryan V.; Chen, Gang; Ji, Ru-Rong

    2015-01-01

    Spinal cord stimulation (SCS) is a therapy used to treat intractable pain with a putative mechanism of action based on the Gate Control Theory. We hypothesized that sensory projection neuron responses to SCS would follow a single stereotyped response curve as a function of SCS frequency, as predicted by the Gate Control circuit. We recorded the responses of antidromically identified sensory projection neurons in the lumbar spinal cord during 1- to 150-Hz SCS in both healthy rats and neuropathic rats following chronic constriction injury (CCI). The relationship between SCS frequency and projection neuron activity predicted by the Gate Control circuit accounted for a subset of neuronal responses to SCS but could not account for the full range of observed responses. Heterogeneous responses were classifiable into three additional groups and were reproduced using computational models of spinal microcircuits representing other interactions between nociceptive and nonnociceptive sensory inputs. Intrathecal administration of bicuculline, a GABAA receptor antagonist, increased spontaneous and evoked activity in projection neurons, enhanced excitatory responses to SCS, and reduced inhibitory responses to SCS, suggesting that GABAA neurotransmission plays a broad role in regulating projection neuron activity. These in vivo and computational results challenge the Gate Control Theory as the only mechanism underlying SCS and refine our understanding of the effects of SCS on spinal sensory neurons within the framework of contemporary understanding of dorsal horn circuitry. PMID:25972582

  16. Neuronal FLT1 receptor and its selective ligand VEGF-B protect against retrograde degeneration of sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Dhondt, Joke; Peeraer, Eve; Verheyen, An; Nuydens, Rony; Buysschaert, Ian; Poesen, Koen; Van Geyte, Katie; Beerens, Manu; Shibuya, Masabumi; Haigh, Jody J.; Meert, Theo; Carmeliet, Peter; Lambrechts, Diether

    2011-01-01

    Even though VEGF-B is a homologue of the potent angiogenic factor VEGF, its angiogenic activities have been controversial. Intrigued by findings that VEGF-B may also affect neuronal cells, we assessed the neuroprotective and vasculoprotective effects of VEGF-B in the skin, in which vessels and nerves are functionally intertwined. Although VEGF-B and its FLT1 receptor were prominently expressed in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons innervating the hindlimb skin, they were not essential for nerve function or vascularization of the skin. However, primary DRG cultures lacking VEGF-B or FLT1 exhibited increased neuronal stress and were more susceptible to paclitaxel-induced cell death. Concomitantly, mice lacking VEGF-B or a functional FLT1 developed more retrograde degeneration of sensory neurons in a model of distal neuropathy. On the other hand, the addition of the VEGF-B isoform, VEGF-B186, to DRG cultures antagonized neuronal stress, maintained the mitochondrial membrane potential and stimulated neuronal survival. Mice overexpressing VEGF-B186 or FLT1 selectively in neurons were protected against the distal neuropathy, whereas exogenous VEGF-B186, either delivered by gene transfer or as a recombinant factor, was protective by directly affecting sensory neurons and not the surrounding vasculature. Overall, this indicates that VEGF-B, instead of acting as an angiogenic factor, exerts direct neuroprotective effects through FLT1. These findings also suggest a clinically relevant role for VEGF-B in preventing distal neuropathies.—Dhondt, J., Peeraer, E., Verheyen, A., Nuydens, R., Buysschaert, I., Poesen, K., Van Geyte, K., Beerens, M., Shibuya, M., Haigh, J. J., Meert, T., Carmeliet, P., Lambrechts, D. Neuronal FLT1 receptor and its selective ligand VEGF-B protect against retrograde degeneration of sensory neurons. PMID:21248239

  17. The somatostatin receptor 4 agonist J-2156 reduces mechanosensitivity of peripheral nerve afferents and spinal neurons in an inflammatory pain model.

    PubMed

    Schuelert, Niklas; Just, Stefan; Kuelzer, Raimund; Corradini, Laura; Gorham, Louise C J; Doods, Henri

    2015-01-05

    Somatostatin (SST) is a peptide hormone that regulates the endocrine system and affects neurotransmission via interaction with G protein-coupled SST receptors and inhibition of the release of different hormones. The aim of this study was to investigate whether the analgesic properties of the selective SSTR4 agonist J-2156 are mediated via peripheral and/or spinal receptors. Effect on mechanical hyperalgesia in the Complete Freund׳s Adjuvant (CFA) model was measured after intraperitoneal application of J-2156. Electrophysiological neuronal recordings were conducted 24 h after injection of CFA or vehicle into the paw of Wistar rats. Mechanosensitivity of peripheral afferents of the saphenous nerve as well as of spinal wide dynamic range (WDR) and nociceptive-specific (NS) neurons were measured after systemic or spinal application of J-2156. In CFA animals J-2156 dose dependently reduced hyperalgesia in behavioral studies. The minimal effective dose was 0.1 mg/kg. Mechanosensitivity of peripheral afferents and spinal neurons was significantly reduced by J-2156. NS neurons were dose dependently inhibited by J-2156 while in WDR neurons only the highest concentration of 100 µM had an effect. In sham controls, J-2156 had no effect on neuronal activity. We demonstrated that J-2156 dose-dependently reduces peripheral and spinal neuronal excitability in the CFA rat model without affecting physiological pain transmission. Given the high concentration of the compound required to inhibit spinal neurons, it is unlikely that the behavioral effect seen in CFA model is mediated centrally. Overall these data demonstrated that the analgesic effect of J-2156 is mediated mainly via peripheral SST4 receptors.

  18. Behavioral aging is associated with reduced sensory neuron excitability in Aplysia californica

    PubMed Central

    Kempsell, Andrew T.; Fieber, Lynne A.

    2014-01-01

    Invertebrate models have advantages for understanding the basis of behavioral aging due to their simple nervous systems and short lifespans. The potential usefulness of Aplysia californica in aging research is apparent from its long history of neurobiological research, but it has been underexploited in this model use. Aging of simple reflexes at both single sensory neuron and neural circuit levels was studied to connect behavioral aging to neurophysiological aging. The tail withdrawal reflex (TWR), righting reflex, and biting response were measured throughout sexual maturity in 3 cohorts of hatchery-reared animals of known age. Reflex times increased and reflex amplitudes decreased significantly during aging. Aging in sensory neurons of animals with deficits in measures of the TWR and biting response resulted in significantly reduced excitability in old animals compared to their younger siblings. The threshold for firing increased while the number of action potentials in response to depolarizing current injection decreased during aging in sensory neurons, but not in tail motoneurons. Glutamate receptor-activated responses in sensory neurons also decreased with aging. In old tail motoneurons, the amplitude of evoked EPSPs following tail shock decreased, presumably due to reduced sensory neuron excitability during aging. The results were used to develop stages of aging relevant to both hatchery-reared and wild-caught Aplysia. Aplysia is a viable aging model in which the contributions of differential aging of components of neural circuits may be assessed. PMID:24847260

  19. CGRPα-expressing sensory neurons respond to stimuli that evoke sensations of pain and itch.

    PubMed

    McCoy, Eric S; Taylor-Blake, Bonnie; Zylka, Mark J

    2012-01-01

    Calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRPα, encoded by Calca) is a classic marker of nociceptive dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons. Despite years of research, it is unclear what stimuli these neurons detect in vitro or in vivo. To facilitate functional studies of these neurons, we genetically targeted an axonal tracer (farnesylated enhanced green fluorescent protein; GFP) and a LoxP-stopped cell ablation construct (human diphtheria toxin receptor; DTR) to the Calca locus. In culture, 10-50% (depending on ligand) of all CGRPα-GFP-positive (+) neurons responded to capsaicin, mustard oil, menthol, acidic pH, ATP, and pruritogens (histamine and chloroquine), suggesting a role for peptidergic neurons in detecting noxious stimuli and itch. In contrast, few (2.2±1.3%) CGRPα-GFP(+) neurons responded to the TRPM8-selective cooling agent icilin. In adult mice, CGRPα-GFP(+) cell bodies were located in the DRG, spinal cord (motor neurons and dorsal horn neurons), brain and thyroid-reproducibly marking all cell types known to express Calca. Half of all CGRPα-GFP(+) DRG neurons expressed TRPV1, ∼25% expressed neurofilament-200, <10% contained nonpeptidergic markers (IB4 and Prostatic acid phosphatase) and almost none (<1%) expressed TRPM8. CGRPα-GFP(+) neurons innervated the dorsal spinal cord and innervated cutaneous and visceral tissues. This included nerve endings in the epidermis and on guard hairs. Our study provides direct evidence that CGRPα(+) DRG neurons respond to agonists that evoke pain and itch and constitute a sensory circuit that is largely distinct from nonpeptidergic circuits and TRPM8(+)/cool temperature circuits. In future studies, it should be possible to conditionally ablate CGRPα-expressing neurons to evaluate sensory and non-sensory functions for these neurons.

  20. Chronic intermittent hypoxia affects integration of sensory input by neurons in the nucleus tractus solitarii.

    PubMed

    Kline, David D

    2010-11-30

    The autonomic nervous and respiratory systems, as well as their coupling, adapt over a wide range of conditions. Chronic intermittent hypoxia (CIH) is a model for recurrent apneas and induces alterations in breathing and increases in sympathetic nerve activity which may ultimately result in hypertension if left untreated. These alterations are believed to be due to increases in the carotid body chemoreflex pathway. Here we present evidence that the nucleus tractus solitarii (nTS), the central brainstem termination site of chemoreceptor afferents, expresses a form of synaptic plasticity that increases overall nTS activity following intermittent hypoxia. Following CIH, an increase in presynaptic spontaneous neurotransmitter release occurs under baseline conditions. Furthermore, during and following afferent stimulation there is an augmentation of spontaneous transmitter release that occurs out of synchrony with sensory stimulation. On the other hand, afferent evoked synchronous transmitter release is attenuated. Overall, this shift from synchronous to asynchronous transmitter release enhances nTS cellular discharge. The role of the neurotransmitter dopamine in CIH-induced plasticity is also discussed. Dopamine attenuates synaptic transmission in nTS cells by blockade of N-type calcium channels, and this mechanism occurs tonically following normoxia and CIH. This dopaminergic pathway, however, is not altered in CIH. Taken together, alterations in nTS synaptic activity may play a role in the changes of chemoreflex function and cardiorespiratory activity in the CIH apnea model.

  1. [The neuronal responses of the caudate nucleus in the cat to sensory stimulation].

    PubMed

    Rodionova, E I; Pigarev, I N

    1990-01-01

    Responses of caudate neurons to a large variety of visual and other sensory stimuli were studied in alert cats. Sharp drops in the spontaneous activity of the unknown origin and differences in the activity level were revealed in adjacent parts of the caudate nucleus. The following types of neurons were recorded: neurons responding to visual stimulation; neurons responding to somatic stimulation; neurons responding to combined visual-somatic stimulation. The best response was observed to moving visual stimuli that attracted the animal's attention, alimentary objects specifically. The caudate nucleus of each hemisphere contained representation of both contra- and ipsilateral half of the animal body. Cell responses to sensory stimuli from the caudate nucleus have been compared with those from some cortical areas.

  2. Electrical stimulation promotes sensory neuron regeneration and growth-associated gene expression.

    PubMed

    Geremia, Nicole M; Gordon, Tessa; Brushart, Thomas M; Al-Majed, Abdulhakeem A; Verge, Valerie M K

    2007-06-01

    Brief electrical stimulation enhances the regenerative ability of axotomized motor [Nix, W.A., Hopf, H.C., 1983. Electrical stimulation of regenerating nerve and its effect on motor recovery. Brain Res. 272, 21-25; Al-Majed, A.A., Neumann, C.M., Brushart, T.M., Gordon, T., 2000. Brief electrical stimulation promotes the speed and accuracy of motor axonal regeneration. J. Neurosci. 20, 2602-2608] and sensory [Brushart, T.M., Jari, R., Verge, V., Rohde, C., Gordon, T., 2005. Electrical stimulation restores the specificity of sensory axon regeneration. Exp. Neurol. 194, 221-229] neurons. Here we examined the parameter of duration of stimulation on regenerative capacity, including the intrinsic growth programs, of sensory neurons. The effect of 20 Hz continuous electrical stimulation on the number of DRG sensory neurons that regenerate their axons was evaluated following transection and surgical repair of the femoral nerve trunk. Stimulation was applied proximal to the repair site for 1 h, 3 h, 1 day, 7 days or 14 days at the time of nerve repair. Following a 21-day regeneration period, DRG neurons that regenerated axons into the muscle and cutaneous sensory nerve branches were retrogradely identified. Stimulation of 1 h led to a significant increase in DRG neurons regenerating into cutaneous and muscle branches when compared to 0 h (sham) stimulation or longer periods of stimulation. Stimulation for 1 h also significantly increased the numbers of neurons that regenerated axons beyond the repair site 4 days after lesion and was correlated with a significant increase in expression of growth-associated protein 43 (GAP-43) mRNA in the regenerating neurons at 2 days post-repair. An additional indicator of heightened plasticity following 1 h stimulation was elevated expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). The effect of brief stimulation on enhancing sensory and motoneuron regeneration holds promise for inducing improved peripheral nerve repair in the

  3. Localization of the autonomic, somatic and sensory neurons innervating the cranial tibial muscle of the pig.

    PubMed

    Botti, Maddalena; Gazza, Ferdinando; Ragionieri, Luisa; Minelli, Luisa Bo; Panu, Rino

    2011-01-01

    The location of sympathetic, somatic and sensory neurons projecting to the cranial tibial muscle of the pig hindlimb was studied with the neuronal non-transynaptic tracer Fast Blue. Additionally, the number and the size of these neurons were determinated. The Fast blue, randomly applied to the cranial tibial muscle belly of 3 pigs, labelled sympathetic neurons in the ipsilateral L5-S3 and contralateral S1 sympathetic trunk ganglia and in the prevertebral caudal mesenteric ganglia of both sides. The somatic motoneurons were identified in the ipsilateral ventral horn of the S1 segment of spinal cord, while the sensory neurons were located in the ipsilateral L7-S1 spinal ganglia. The diameter of the multipolar sympathetic neurons oscillated between 26 and 46 microm in the sympathetic trunk ganglia and between 18 and 42 microm in the caudal mesenteric ganglia. The size of the multipolar spinal motoneurons oscillated between 33 and 102 microm. The size of the pseudounipolar sensory neurons oscillated between 23 and 67 microm. In all ganglia, the labelled neurons were localized at random and did not show a somatotopic distribution. Our results document a conspicuous autonomic innervation projecting to the "classic" skeletal cranial tibial muscle. Probably this innervation is destined to the muscle vessels.

  4. Neuro-fuzzy decoding of sensory information from ensembles of simultaneously recorded dorsal root ganglion neurons for functional electrical stimulation applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rigosa, J.; Weber, D. J.; Prochazka, A.; Stein, R. B.; Micera, S.

    2011-08-01

    Functional electrical stimulation (FES) is used to improve motor function after injury to the central nervous system. Some FES systems use artificial sensors to switch between finite control states. To optimize FES control of the complex behavior of the musculo-skeletal system in activities of daily life, it is highly desirable to implement feedback control. In theory, sensory neural signals could provide the required control signals. Recent studies have demonstrated the feasibility of deriving limb-state estimates from the firing rates of primary afferent neurons recorded in dorsal root ganglia (DRG). These studies used multiple linear regression (MLR) methods to generate estimates of limb position and velocity based on a weighted sum of firing rates in an ensemble of simultaneously recorded DRG neurons. The aim of this study was to test whether the use of a neuro-fuzzy (NF) algorithm (the generalized dynamic fuzzy neural networks (GD-FNN)) could improve the performance, robustness and ability to generalize from training to test sets compared to the MLR technique. NF and MLR decoding methods were applied to ensemble DRG recordings obtained during passive and active limb movements in anesthetized and freely moving cats. The GD-FNN model provided more accurate estimates of limb state and generalized better to novel movement patterns. Future efforts will focus on implementing these neural recording and decoding methods in real time to provide closed-loop control of FES using the information extracted from sensory neurons.

  5. Dopamine neurons code subjective sensory experience and uncertainty of perceptual decisions

    PubMed Central

    de Lafuente, Victor; Romo, Ranulfo

    2011-01-01

    Midbrain dopamine (DA) neurons respond to sensory stimuli associated with future rewards. When reward is delivered probabilistically, DA neurons reflect this uncertainty by increasing their firing rates in a period between the sensory cue and reward delivery time. Probability of reward, however, has been externally conveyed by visual cues, and it is not known whether DA neurons would signal uncertainty arising internally. Here we show that DA neurons code the uncertainty associated with a perceptual judgment about the presence or absence of a vibrotactile stimulus. We observed that uncertainty modulates the activity elicited by a go cue instructing monkey subjects to communicate their decisions. That is, the same go cue generates different DA responses depending on the uncertainty level of a judgment made a few seconds before the go instruction. Easily detected suprathreshold stimuli elicit small DA responses, indicating that future reward will not be a surprising event. In contrast, the absence of a sensory stimulus generates large DA responses associated with uncertainty: was the stimulus truly absent, or did a low-amplitude vibration go undetected? In addition, the responses of DA neurons to the stimulus itself increase with vibration amplitude, but only when monkeys correctly detect its presence. This finding suggests that DA activity is not related to actual intensity but rather to perceived intensity. Therefore, in addition to their well-known role in reward prediction, DA neurons code subjective sensory experience and uncertainty arising internally from perceptual decisions. PMID:22106310

  6. Muscle IL1β Drives Ischemic Myalgia via ASIC3-Mediated Sensory Neuron Sensitization

    PubMed Central

    Ross, Jessica L.; Queme, Luis F.; Cohen, Elysia R.; Green, Kathryn J.; Lu, Peilin; Shank, Aaron T.; An, Suzie; Hudgins, Renita C.

    2016-01-01

    Musculoskeletal pain is a significantly common clinical complaint. Although it is known that muscles are quite sensitive to alterations in blood flow/oxygenation and a number of muscle pain disorders are based in problems of peripheral perfusion, the mechanisms by which ischemic-like conditions generate myalgia remain unclear. We found, using a multidisciplinary experimental approach, that ischemia and reperfusion injury (I/R) in male Swiss Webster mice altered ongoing and evoked pain-related behaviors in addition to activity levels through enhanced muscle interleukin-1 beta (IL1β)/IL1 receptor signaling to group III/IV muscle afferents. Peripheral sensitization depended on acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) because treatment of sensory afferents in vitro with IL1β-upregulated ASIC3 in single cells, and nerve-specific knock-down of ASIC3 recapitulated the results of inhibiting the enhanced IL1β/IL1r1 signaling after I/R, which was also found to regulate afferent sensitization and pain-related behaviors. This suggests that targeting muscle IL1β signaling may be a potential analgesic therapy for ischemic myalgia. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Here, we have described a novel pathway whereby increased inflammation within the muscle tissue during ischemia/reperfusion injury sensitizes group III and IV muscle afferents via upregulation of acid-sensing ion channel 3 (ASIC3), leading not only to alterations in mechanical and chemical responsiveness in individual afferents, but also to pain-related behavioral changes. Furthermore, these I/R-induced changes can be prevented using an afferent-specific siRNA knock-down strategy targeting either ASIC3 or the upstream mediator of its expression, interleukin 1 receptor 1. Therefore, this knowledge may contribute to the development of alternative therapeutics for muscle pain and may be especially relevant to pain caused by issues of peripheral circulation, which is commonly observed in disorders such as complex regional pain syndrome

  7. Monosynaptic convergence of somatic and visceral C-fiber afferents on projection and local circuit neurons in lamina I: a substrate for referred pain.

    PubMed

    Luz, Liliana L; Fernandes, Elisabete C; Sivado, Miklos; Kokai, Eva; Szucs, Peter; Safronov, Boris V

    2015-10-01

    Referred pain is a phenomenon of feeling pain at a site other than the site of the painful stimulus origin. It arises from a pathological mixing of nociceptive processing pathways for visceral and somatic inputs. Despite numerous studies based on unit recordings from spinal and supraspinal neurons, the exact mechanism and site of this mixing within the central nervous system are not known. Here, we selectively recorded from lamina I neurons, using a visually guided patch-clamp technique, in thoracic spinal cord preparation with preserved intercostal (somatic) and splanchnic (visceral) nerves. We show that somatic and visceral C fibers converge monosynaptically onto a group of lamina I neurons, which includes both projection and local circuit neurons. Other groups of lamina I neurons received inputs from either somatic or visceral afferents. We have also identified a population of lamina I local circuit neurons showing overall inhibitory responses upon stimulation of both nerves. Thus, the present data allow us to draw two major conclusions. First, lamina I of the spinal cord is the first site in the central nervous system where somatic and visceral pathways directly converge onto individual projection and local circuit neurons. Second, the mechanism of somatovisceral convergence is complex and based on functional integration of monosynaptic and polysynaptic excitatory as well as inhibitory inputs in specific groups of neurons. This complex pattern of convergence provides a substrate for alterations in the balance between visceral and somatic inputs causing referred pain.

  8. A 3’UTR Pumilio binding element directs translational activation in olfactory sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Kaye, Julia A.; Rose, Natalie C.; Goldsworthy, Brett; Goga, Andrei; L'Etoile, Noelle D.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Prolonged stimulation leads to specific and stable changes in an animal’s behavior. In interneurons, this plasticity requires spatial and temporal control of neuronal protein synthesis. Whether such translational control occurs in sensory neurons is not known. Adaptation of the AWC olfactory sensory neurons of C. elegans requires the cGMP-dependent protein kinase EGL-4. Here we show that the PUF FBF-1 is required in the adult AWC for adaptation and in the odor-adapted animal, increases translation from the egl-4 3’ UTR. Further, the PUF protein may localize translation near the sensory cilia and cell body. Although the RNA-binding PUF proteins have been shown to promote plasticity in development by temporally and spatially repressing translation; this work reveals that in the adult nervous system, they can work in a different way to promote experience-dependent plasticity by activating translation in response to environmental stimulation. PMID:19146813

  9. Neck muscle afferents influence oromotor and cardiorespiratory brainstem neural circuits.

    PubMed

    Edwards, I J; Lall, V K; Paton, J F; Yanagawa, Y; Szabo, G; Deuchars, S A; Deuchars, J

    2015-01-01

    Sensory information arising from the upper neck is important in the reflex control of posture and eye position. It has also been linked to the autonomic control of the cardiovascular and respiratory systems. Whiplash associated disorders (WAD) and cervical dystonia, which involve disturbance to the neck region, can often present with abnormalities to the oromotor, respiratory and cardiovascular systems. We investigated the potential neural pathways underlying such symptoms. Simulating neck afferent activity by electrical stimulation of the second cervical nerve in a working heart brainstem preparation (WHBP) altered the pattern of central respiratory drive and increased perfusion pressure. Tracing central targets of these sensory afferents revealed projections to the intermedius nucleus of the medulla (InM). These anterogradely labelled afferents co-localised with parvalbumin and vesicular glutamate transporter 1 indicating that they are proprioceptive. Anterograde tracing from the InM identified projections to brain regions involved in respiratory, cardiovascular, postural and oro-facial behaviours--the neighbouring hypoglossal nucleus, facial and motor trigeminal nuclei, parabrachial nuclei, rostral and caudal ventrolateral medulla and nucleus ambiguus. In brain slices, electrical stimulation of afferent fibre tracts lateral to the cuneate nucleus monosynaptically excited InM neurones. Direct stimulation of the InM in the WHBP mimicked the response of second cervical nerve stimulation. These results provide evidence of pathways linking upper cervical sensory afferents with CNS areas involved in autonomic and oromotor control, via the InM. Disruption of these neuronal pathways could, therefore, explain the dysphagic and cardiorespiratory abnormalities which may accompany cervical dystonia and WAD.

  10. Mathematical Relationships between Neuron Morphology and Neurite Growth Dynamics in Drosophila melanogaster Larva Class IV Sensory Neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ganguly, Sujoy; Liang, Xin; Grace, Michael; Lee, Daniel; Howard, Jonathon

    The morphology of neurons is diverse and reflects the diversity of neuronal functions, yet the principles that govern neuronal morphogenesis are unclear. In an effort to better understand neuronal morphogenesis we will be focusing on the development of the dendrites of class IV sensory neuron in Drosophila melanogaster. In particular we attempt to determine how the the total length, and the number of branches of dendrites are mathematically related to the dynamics of neurite growth and branching. By imaging class IV neurons during early embryogenesis we are able to measure the change in neurite length l (t) as a function of time v (t) = dl / dt . We found that the distribution of v (t) is well characterized by a hyperbolic secant distribution, and that the addition of new branches per unit time is well described by a Poisson process. Combining these measurements with the assumption that branching occurs with equal probability anywhere along the dendrite we were able to construct a mathematical model that provides reasonable agreement with the observed number of branches, and total length of the dendrites of the class IV sensory neuron.

  11. Response properties of temporomandibular joint mechanosensitive neurons in the trigeminal sensory complex of the rabbit.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Osuke; Tsuboi, Akito; Tabata, Takayoshi; Takafuji, Yasuo; Sakurai, Takeshi; Watanabe, Makoto

    2012-10-01

    The neurophysiological properties of neurons sensitive to TMJ movement (TMJ neurons) in the trigeminal sensory complex (Vcomp) during passive movement of the isolated condyle were examined in 46 rabbits. Discharges of TMJ neurons from the rostral part of the Vcomp were recorded with a microelectrode when the isolated condyle was moved manually and with a computer-regulated mechanostimulator. A total of 443 neurons responding to mechanical stimulation of the face and oral cavity were recorded from the brainstem. Twenty-one TMJ neurons were detected rostrocaudally from the dorsal part of the trigeminal principal sensory nucleus (NVsnpr), subnucleus oralis of the trigeminal spinal nucleus, and reticular formation surrounding the trigeminal motor nucleus. Most of the TMJ neurons were located in the dorso-rostral part of the NVsnpr. Of the TMJ units recorded, 90 % were slowly adapting and 26 % had an accompanying resting discharge. The majority (86 %) of the TMJ units responded to the movement of the isolated condyle in the anterior and/or ventral directions, and half were sensitive to the condyle movement in a single direction. The discharge frequencies of TMJ units increased as the condyle displacement and constant velocity (5 mm/s) increased within a 5-mm anterior displacement of the isolated condyle. Based on these results, we conclude that sensory information is processed by TMJ neurons encoding at least joint position and displacement in the physiological range of mandibular displacement.

  12. TRPA1 is a major oxidant sensor in murine airway sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Bessac, Bret F.; Sivula, Michael; von Hehn, Christian A.; Escalera, Jasmine; Cohn, Lauren; Jordt, Sven-Eric

    2008-01-01

    Sensory neurons in the airways are finely tuned to respond to reactive chemicals threatening airway function and integrity. Nasal trigeminal nerve endings are particularly sensitive to oxidants formed in polluted air and during oxidative stress as well as to chlorine, which is frequently released in industrial and domestic accidents. Oxidant activation of airway neurons induces respiratory depression, nasal obstruction, sneezing, cough, and pain. While normally protective, chemosensory airway reflexes can provoke severe complications in patients affected by inflammatory airway conditions like rhinitis and asthma. Here, we showed that both hypochlorite, the oxidizing mediator of chlorine, and hydrogen peroxide, a reactive oxygen species, activated Ca2+ influx and membrane currents in an oxidant-sensitive subpopulation of chemosensory neurons. These responses were absent in neurons from mice lacking TRPA1, an ion channel of the transient receptor potential (TRP) gene family. TRPA1 channels were strongly activated by hypochlorite and hydrogen peroxide in primary sensory neurons and heterologous cells. In tests of respiratory function, Trpa1–/– mice displayed profound deficiencies in hypochlorite- and hydrogen peroxide–induced respiratory depression as well as decreased oxidant-induced pain behavior. Our results indicate that TRPA1 is an oxidant sensor in sensory neurons, initiating neuronal excitation and subsequent physiological responses in vitro and in vivo. PMID:18398506

  13. Persistence of PAD and presynaptic inhibition of muscle spindle afferents after peripheral nerve crush.

    PubMed

    Enríquez-Denton, M; Manjarrez, E; Rudomin, P

    2004-11-19

    Two to twelve weeks after crushing a muscle nerve, still before the damaged afferents reinnervate the muscle receptors, conditioning stimulation of group I fibers from flexor muscles depolarizes the damaged afferents [M. Enriquez, I. Jimenez, P. Rudomin, Changes in PAD patterns of group I muscle afferents after a peripheral nerve crush. Exp. Brain Res., 107 (1996), 405-420]. It is not known, however, if this primary afferent depolarization (PAD) is indeed related to presynaptic inhibition. We now show in the cat that 2-12 weeks after crushing the medial gastrocnemius nerve (MG), conditioning stimulation of group I fibers from flexors increases the excitability of the intraspinal terminals of both the intact lateral gastrocnemius plus soleus (LGS) and of the previously damaged MG fibers ending in the motor pool, because of PAD. The PAD is associated with the depression of the pre- and postsynaptic components of the extracellular field potentials (EFPs) evoked in the motor pool by stimulation of either the intact LGS or of the previously damaged MG nerves. These observations indicate, in contrast to what has been reported for crushed cutaneous afferents [K.W. Horch, J.W. Lisney, Changes in primary afferent depolarization of sensory neurones during peripheral nerve regeneration in the cat, J. Physiol., 313 (1981), 287-299], that shortly after damaging their peripheral axons, the synaptic efficacy of group I spindle afferents remains under central control. Presynaptic inhibitory mechanisms could be utilized to adjust the central actions of muscle afferents not fully recovered from peripheral lesions.

  14. Substratum preferences of motor and sensory neurons in postnatal and adult rats.

    PubMed

    Gonzalez-Perez, Francisco; Alé, Albert; Santos, Daniel; Barwig, Christina; Freier, Thomas; Navarro, Xavier; Udina, Esther

    2016-02-01

    After peripheral nerve injuries, damaged axons can regenerate but functional recovery is limited by the specific reinnervation of targets. In this study we evaluated if motor and sensory neurites have a substrate preference for laminin and fibronectin in postnatal and adult stages. In postnatal dorsal root ganglia (DRG) explants, sensory neurons extended longer neurites on collagen matrices enriched with laminin (~50%) or fibronectin (~35%), whereas motoneurons extended longer neurites (~100%) in organotypic spinal cord slices embedded in fibronectin-enriched matrix. An increased percentage of parvalbumin-positive neurites (presumptive proprioceptive) vs. neurofilament-positive neurites was also found in DRG in fibronectin-enriched matrix. To test if the different preference of neurons for extracellular matrix components was maintained in vivo, these matrices were used to fill a chitosan guide to repair a 6-mm gap in the sciatic nerve of adult rats. However, the number of regenerating motor and sensory neurons after 1 month was similar between groups. Moreover, none of the retrotraced sensory neurons in DRG was positive for parvalbumin, suggesting that presumptive proprioceptive neurons had poor regenerative capabilities compared with other peripheral neurons. Using real-time PCR we evaluated the expression of α5β1 (receptor for fibronectin) and α7β1 integrin (receptor for laminin) in spinal cord and DRG 2 days after injury. Postnatal animals showed a higher increase of α5β1 integrin, whereas both integrins were similarly expressed in adult neurons. Therefore, we conclude that motor and sensory axons have a different substrate preference at early postnatal stages but this difference is lost in the adult.

  15. Distinct Nav1.7-dependent pain sensations require different sets of sensory and sympathetic neurons.

    PubMed

    Minett, Michael S; Nassar, Mohammed A; Clark, Anna K; Passmore, Gayle; Dickenson, Anthony H; Wang, Fan; Malcangio, Marzia; Wood, John N

    2012-04-24

    Human acute and inflammatory pain requires the expression of voltage-gated sodium channel Nav1.7 but its significance for neuropathic pain is unknown. Here we show that Nav1.7 expression in different sets of mouse sensory and sympathetic neurons underlies distinct types of pain sensation. Ablating Nav1.7 gene (SCN9A) expression in all sensory neurons using Advillin-Cre abolishes mechanical pain, inflammatory pain and reflex withdrawal responses to heat. In contrast, heat-evoked pain is retained when SCN9A is deleted only in Nav1.8-positive nociceptors. Surprisingly, responses to the hotplate test, as well as neuropathic pain, are unaffected when SCN9A is deleted in all sensory neurons. However, deleting SCN9A in both sensory and sympathetic neurons abolishes these pain sensations and recapitulates the pain-free phenotype seen in humans with SCN9A loss-of-function mutations. These observations demonstrate an important role for Nav1.7 in sympathetic neurons in neuropathic pain, and provide possible insights into the mechanisms that underlie gain-of-function Nav1.7-dependent pain conditions.

  16. The sensory neurone membrane protein SNMP1 contributes to the sensitivity of a pheromone detection system.

    PubMed

    Pregitzer, P; Greschista, M; Breer, H; Krieger, J

    2014-12-01

    Male moths detect female-released sex pheromones with extraordinary sensitivity. The remarkable sensory ability is based on a cooperative interplay of pheromone binding proteins in the lymph of hair-like sensilla trichodea and pheromone receptors in the dendrites of sensory neurones. Here we examined whether in Heliothis virescens the so-called 'sensory neurone membrane protein 1' (SNMP1) may contribute to responsiveness to the pheromone component, (Z)-11-hexadecenal (Z11-16:Ald). By means of immunohistochemistry and in situ hybridization we demonstrated that SNMP1 is in fact present in cells expressing the Z11-16:Ald receptor HR13 and the dendrites of sensory neurones. To assess a possible function of SNMP1 we monitored the responsiveness of cell lines that expressed HR13 alone or the combination SNMP1/HR13 to stimulation with Z11-16:Ald by calcium imaging. It was found that SNMP1/HR13 cells were 1000-fold more sensitive to pheromone stimulation compared with HR13 cells. In contrast, cells that expressed HR13 and the non-neuronal SNMP2-type showed no change in pheromone sensitivity. Overall, our reconstitution experiments demonstrate that the presence of SNMP1 significantly increases the HR13-based responsiveness of cells to Z11-16:Ald, suggesting that SNMP1 also contributes to the response of the antennal neurones and thus to the remarkable sensitivity of the pheromone detection system.

  17. Calcium-activated chloride current expression in axotomized sensory neurons: what for?

    PubMed Central

    Boudes, Mathieu; Scamps, Frédérique

    2012-01-01

    Calcium-activated chloride currents (CaCCs) are activated by an increase in intracellular calcium concentration. Peripheral nerve injury induces the expression of CaCCs in a subset of adult sensory neurons in primary culture including mechano- and proprioceptors, though not nociceptors. Functional screenings of potential candidate genes established that Best1 is a molecular determinant for CaCC expression among axotomized sensory neurons, while Tmem16a is acutely activated by inflammatory mediators in nociceptors. In nociceptors, such CaCCs are preferentially activated under receptor-induced calcium mobilization contributing to cell excitability and pain. In axotomized mechano- and proprioceptors, CaCC activation does not promote electrical activity and prevents firing, a finding consistent with electrical silencing for growth competence of adult sensory neurons. In favor of a role in the process of neurite growth, CaCC expression is temporally correlated to neurons displaying a regenerative mode of growth. This perspective focuses on the molecular identity and role of CaCC in axotomized sensory neurons and the future directions to decipher the cellular mechanisms regulating CaCC during neurite (re)growth. PMID:22461766

  18. Substance P presynaptically depresses the transmission of sensory input to bronchopulmonary neurons in the guinea pig nucleus tractus solitarii

    PubMed Central

    Sekizawa, Shin-ichi; Joad, Jesse P; Bonham, Ann C

    2003-01-01

    Substance P modulates the reflex regulation of respiratory function by its actions both peripherally and in the CNS, particularly in the nucleus tractus solitarii (NTS), the first central site for synaptic contact of the lung and airway afferent fibres. There is considerable evidence that the actions of substance P in the NTS augment respiratory reflex output, but the precise effects on synaptic transmission have not yet been determined. Therefore, we determined the effects of substance P on synaptic transmission at the first central synapses by using whole-cell voltage clamping in an NTS slice preparation. Studies were performed on second-order neurons in the slice anatomically identified as receiving monosynaptic input from sensory nerves in the lungs and airways. This was done by the fluorescent labelling of terminal boutons after 1,1′-dioctadecyl-3,3,3′,3′-tetra-methylindocarbo-cyanine perchlorate (DiI) was applied via tracheal instillation. Substance P (1.0, 0.3 and 0.1 μM) significantly decreased the amplitude of excitatory postsynaptic currents (eEPSCs) evoked by stimulation of the tractus solitarius, in a concentration-dependent manner. The decrease was accompanied by an increase in the paired-pulse ratio of two consecutive eEPSCs, and a decrease in the frequency, but not the amplitude, of spontaneous EPSCs and miniature EPSCs, findings consistent with a presynaptic site of action. The effects were consistently and significantly attenuated by a neurokinin-1 (NK1) receptor antagonist (SR140333, 3 μM). The data suggest a new site of action for substance P in the NTS (NK1 receptors on the central terminals of sensory fibres) and a new mechanism (depression of synaptic transmission) for regulating respiratory reflex function. PMID:14561836

  19. The Drosophila female aphrodisiac pheromone activates ppk23(+) sensory neurons to elicit male courtship behavior.

    PubMed

    Toda, Hirofumi; Zhao, Xiaoliang; Dickson, Barry J

    2012-06-28

    Females of many animal species emit chemical signals that attract and arouse males for mating. For example, the major aphrodisiac pheromone of Drosophila melanogaster females, 7,11-heptacosadiene (7,11-HD), is a potent inducer of male-specific courtship and copulatory behaviors. Here, we demonstrate that a set of gustatory sensory neurons on the male foreleg, defined by expression of the ppk23 marker, respond to 7,11-HD. Activity of these neurons is required for males to robustly court females or to court males perfumed with 7,11-HD. Artificial activation of these ppk23(+) neurons stimulates male-male courtship even without 7,11-HD perfuming. These data identify the ppk23(+) sensory neurons as the primary targets for female sex pheromones in Drosophila.

  20. MeCP2 regulates activity-dependent transcriptional responses in olfactory sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Wooje; Yun, Jung-Mi; Woods, Rima; Dunaway, Keith; Yasui, Dag H.; Lasalle, Janine M.; Gong, Qizhi

    2014-01-01

    During postnatal development, neuronal activity controls the remodeling of initially imprecise neuronal connections through the regulation of gene expression. MeCP2 binds to methylated DNA and modulates gene expression during neuronal development and MECP2 mutation causes the autistic disorder Rett syndrome. To investigate a role for MeCP2 in neuronal circuit refinement and to identify activity-dependent MeCP2 transcription regulations, we leveraged the precise organization and accessibility of olfactory sensory axons to manipulation of neuronal activity through odorant exposure in vivo. We demonstrate that olfactory sensory axons failed to develop complete convergence when Mecp2 is deficient in olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs) in an otherwise wild-type animal. Furthermore, we demonstrate that expression of selected adhesion genes was elevated in Mecp2-deficient glomeruli, while acute odor stimulation in control mice resulted in significantly reduced MeCP2 binding to these gene loci, correlating with increased expression. Thus, MeCP2 is required for both circuitry refinement and activity-dependent transcriptional responses in OSNs. PMID:25008110

  1. Effects of sensory deprivation on columnar organization of neuronal circuits in the rat barrel cortex.

    PubMed

    Schierloh, Anja; Eder, Matthias; Zieglgänsberger, Walter; Dodt, Hans-Ulrich

    2004-08-01

    We examined whether sensory deprivation during formation of the cortical circuitry influences the pattern of intracortical single-cell connections in rat barrel cortex. Excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs) from layer 2/3 (L2/3) pyramidal neurons were recorded in vitro using patch-clamp techniques. In order to evoke EPSPs, presynaptic neurons were stimulated by photolytically applied glutamate, thus generating action potentials. Synaptic connections between the stimulated and the recorded neuron were identified by the occurrence of PSPs following photostimulation. Sensory deprivation changed the pattern of projections from L4 and L2/3 neurons to L2/3 pyramidal cells. In slices of non-deprived rats 86% of the total presynaptic neurons were located in the first and only 10% in the second barrel column. Deprivation changed these values to 67% and 26%, respectively. Therefore, the probability of presynaptic cells projecting to L2/3 neurons was shifted from adjacent to more remote barrel columns. These results indicate that deprivation of sensory input influences the pattern of intracortical connections.

  2. Sensory deprivation increases phagocytosis of adult-born neurons by activated microglia in the olfactory bulb.

    PubMed

    Denizet, Marie; Cotter, Laurent; Lledo, Pierre-Marie; Lazarini, Françoise

    2017-02-01

    The olfactory bulb (OB) is a highly plastic structure that can change organizational networks depending on environmental inputs in adult mammals. Particularly, in rodents, adult neurogenesis underlies plastic changes in the OB circuitry by continuously adding new interneurons to the network. We addressed the question of whether microglia, the immune cells of the brain, were involved in pruning OB neurons. Using lentiviral labeling of neurons in neonatal or adult mice and confocal analysis, we showed that microglia engulfed parts of neonatal-born and adult-born neurons in the healthy OB. We demonstrated that OB deafferentation by Dichlobenil administration induced sensory deprivation. It also increased phagocytosis of adult-born, but not neonatal-born neurons, by activated microglia. Conversely, intranasal lipopolysaccharide administration induced activation of microglia but changed neither adult neurogenesis nor olfaction. Our data reveal that steady-state microglia eliminate adult-born neurons and their synapses in both healthy and sensory deprived OBs, thereby adapting neuronal connections to the sensory experience.

  3. Anti-Hu associated paraneoplastic sensory neuronopathy with upper motor neurone involvement.

    PubMed

    Ogawa, M; Nishie, M; Kurahashi, K; Kaimori, M; Wakabayashi, K

    2004-07-01

    Paraneoplastic neurological syndrome is characterised by neuronal degeneration with lymphocytic infiltration in various regions of the central and peripheral nervous systems. Motor neurone symptoms may occur as a remote effect of malignancy, and have been considered because of the involvement of lower motor neurones. A case is reported of an 80 year old woman suffering from paraneoplastic sensory neuronopathy with anti-Hu antibody. Postmortem examination showed adenocarcinoma of the gall bladder and small cell carcinoma of the duodenum. Neuronal loss with lymphocytic infiltration was found in the dorsal root ganglia, brain stem, and cerebellum. Despite the absence of upper motor neurone signs, there was severe loss of Betz cells and degeneration of the bilateral pyramidal tracts. To our knowledge, this is the first demonstration of upper motor neurone involvement in anti-Hu associated paraneoplatic syndrome.

  4. Redox and Nitric Oxide-Mediated Regulation of Sensory Neuron Ion Channel Function

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Significance: Reactive oxygen and nitrogen species (ROS and RNS, respectively) can intimately control neuronal excitability and synaptic strength by regulating the function of many ion channels. In peripheral sensory neurons, such regulation contributes towards the control of somatosensory processing; therefore, understanding the mechanisms of such regulation is necessary for the development of new therapeutic strategies and for the treatment of sensory dysfunctions, such as chronic pain. Recent Advances: Tremendous progress in deciphering nitric oxide (NO) and ROS signaling in the nervous system has been made in recent decades. This includes the recognition of these molecules as important second messengers and the elucidation of their metabolic pathways and cellular targets. Mounting evidence suggests that these targets include many ion channels which can be directly or indirectly modulated by ROS and NO. However, the mechanisms specific to sensory neurons are still poorly understood. This review will therefore summarize recent findings that highlight the complex nature of the signaling pathways involved in redox/NO regulation of sensory neuron ion channels and excitability; references to redox mechanisms described in other neuron types will be made where necessary. Critical Issues: The complexity and interplay within the redox, NO, and other gasotransmitter modulation of protein function are still largely unresolved. Issues of specificity and intracellular localization of these signaling cascades will also be addressed. Future Directions: Since our understanding of ROS and RNS signaling in sensory neurons is limited, there is a multitude of future directions; one of the most important issues for further study is the establishment of the exact roles that these signaling pathways play in pain processing and the translation of this understanding into new therapeutics. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 22, 486–504. PMID:24735331

  5. Cannabinoid receptor-independent actions of the aminoalkylindole WIN 55,212-2 on trigeminal sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Price, Theodore J; Patwardhan, Amol; Akopian, Armen N; Hargreaves, Kenneth M; Flores, Christopher M

    2004-01-01

    The prototypical aminoalkylindole cannabinoid WIN 55,212-2 (WIN-2) has been shown to produce antihyperalgesia through a peripheral mechanism of action. However, it is not known whether WIN-2 exerts this action directly via cannabinoid receptors located on primary afferents or if other, perhaps indirect or noncannabinoid, mechanisms are involved. To address this question, we have examined the specific actions of WIN-2 on trigeminal ganglion (TG) neurons in vitro by quantifying its ability to modulate the evoked secretion of the proinflammatory neuropeptide CGRP as well as the inflammatory mediator-induced generation of cAMP. WIN-2 evoked CGRP release from TG neurons in vitro (EC50=26 μM) in a concentration- and calcium-dependent manner, which was mimicked by the cannabinoid receptor-inactive enantiomer WIN 55,212-3 (WIN-3). Moreover, WIN-2-evoked CGRP release was attenuated by the nonselective cation channel blocker ruthenium red but not by the vanilloid receptor type 1 (TRPV1) antagonist capsazepine, suggesting that, unlike certain endogenous and synthetic cannabinoids, WIN-2 is not a TRPV1 agonist but rather acts at an as yet unidentified cation channel. The inhibitory effects of WIN-2 on TG neurons were also examined. WIN-2 neither inhibited capsaicin-evoked CGRP release nor did it inhibit forskolin-, isoproteranol- or prostaglandin E2-stimulated cAMP accumulation. On the other hand, WIN-2 significantly inhibited (EC50=1.7 μM) 50 mM K+-evoked CGRP release by approximately 70%. WIN-2 inhibition of 50 mM K+-evoked CGRP release was not reversed by antagonists of cannabinoid type 1 (CB1) receptor, but was mimicked in magnitude and potency (EC50=2.7 μM) by its cannabinoid-inactive enantiomer WIN-3. These findings indicate that WIN-2 exerts both excitatory and inhibitory effects on TG neurons, neither of which appear to be mediated by CB1, CB2 or TRPV1 receptors, but by a novel calcium-dependent mechanism. The ramifications of these results are discussed in relation

  6. TRPA1-expressing primary afferents synapse with a morphologically identified subclass of substantia gelatinosa neurons in the adult rat spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Uta, Daisuke; Furue, Hidemasa; Pickering, Anthony E; Rashid, Md Harunor; Mizuguchi-Takase, Hiroko; Katafuchi, Toshihiko; Imoto, Keiji; Yoshimura, Megumu

    2010-06-01

    The TRPA1 channel has been proposed to be a molecular transducer of cold and inflammatory nociceptive signals. It is expressed on a subset of small primary afferent neurons both in the peripheral terminals, where it serves as a sensor, and on the central nerve endings in the dorsal horn. The substantia gelatinosa (SG) of the spinal cord is a key site for integration of noxious inputs. The SG neurons are morphologically and functionally heterogeneous and the precise synaptic circuits of the SG are poorly understood. We examined how activation of TRPA1 channels affects synaptic transmission onto SG neurons using whole-cell patch-clamp recordings and morphological analyses in adult rat spinal cord slices. Cinnamaldehyde (TRPA1 agonist) elicited a barrage of excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) in a subset of the SG neurons that responded to allyl isothiocyanate (less specific TRPA1 agonist) and capsaicin (TRPV1 agonist). Cinnamaldehyde evoked EPSCs in vertical and radial but not islet or central SG cells. Notably, cinnamaldehyde produced no change in inhibitory postsynaptic currents and nor did it produce direct postsynaptic effects. In the presence of tetrodotoxin, cinnamaldehyde increased the frequency but not amplitude of miniature EPSCs. Intriguingly, cinnamaldehyde had a selective inhibitory action on monosynaptic C- (but not Adelta-) fiber-evoked EPSCs. These results indicate that activation of spinal TRPA1 presynaptically facilitates miniature excitatory synaptic transmission from primary afferents onto vertical and radial cells to initiate action potentials. The presence of TRPA1 channels on the central terminals raises the possibility of bidirectional modulatory action in morphologically identified subclasses of SG neurons.

  7. Multiple clusters of release sites formed by individual thalamic afferents onto cortical interneurons ensure reliable transmission.

    PubMed

    Bagnall, Martha W; Hull, Court; Bushong, Eric A; Ellisman, Mark H; Scanziani, Massimo

    2011-07-14

    Thalamic afferents supply the cortex with sensory information by contacting both excitatory neurons and inhibitory interneurons. Interestingly, thalamic contacts with interneurons constitute such a powerful synapse that even one afferent can fire interneurons, thereby driving feedforward inhibition. However, the spatial representation of this potent synapse on interneuron dendrites is poorly understood. Using Ca imaging and electron microscopy we show that an individual thalamic afferent forms multiple contacts with the interneuronal proximal dendritic arbor, preferentially near branch points. More contacts are correlated with larger amplitude synaptic responses. Each contact, consisting of a single bouton, can release up to seven vesicles simultaneously, resulting in graded and reliable Ca transients. Computational modeling indicates that the release of multiple vesicles at each contact minimally reduces the efficiency of the thalamic afferent in exciting the interneuron. This strategy preserves the spatial representation of thalamocortical inputs across the dendritic arbor over a wide range of release conditions.

  8. The formation of the superior and jugular ganglia: insights into the generation of sensory neurons by the neural crest.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Hannah; Blentic, Aida; Watson, Sheona; Begbie, Jo; Graham, Anthony

    2010-02-01

    The superior and jugular ganglia (S/JG) are the proximal ganglia of the IXth and Xth cranial nerves and the sensory neurons of these ganglia are neural crest derived. However, it has been unclear the extent to which their differentiation resembles that of the Dorsal Root Ganglia (DRGs). In the DRGs, neural crest cells undergo neuronal differentiation just after the onset of migration and there is evidence suggesting that these cells are pre-specified towards a sensory fate. We have analysed sensory neuronal differentiation in the S/JG. We show, in keeping with previous studies, that neuronal differentiation initiates long after the cessation of neural crest migration. We also find no evidence for the existence of migratory neural crest cells pre-specified towards a sensory phenotype prior to ganglion formation. Rather our results suggest that sensory neuronal differentiation in the S/JG is the result of localised spatiotemporal cues.

  9. Calcium-activated chloride currents in olfactory sensory neurons from mice lacking bestrophin-2.

    PubMed

    Pifferi, Simone; Dibattista, Michele; Sagheddu, Claudia; Boccaccio, Anna; Al Qteishat, Ahmed; Ghirardi, Filippo; Tirindelli, Roberto; Menini, Anna

    2009-09-01

    Olfactory sensory neurons use a chloride-based signal amplification mechanism to detect odorants. The binding of odorants to receptors in the cilia of olfactory sensory neurons activates a transduction cascade that involves the opening of cyclic nucleotide-gated channels and the entry of Ca(2+) into the cilia. Ca(2+) activates a Cl(-) current that produces an efflux of Cl(-) ions and amplifies the depolarization. The molecular identity of Ca(2+)-activated Cl(-) channels is still elusive, although some bestrophins have been shown to function as Ca(2+)-activated Cl(-) channels when expressed in heterologous systems. In the olfactory epithelium, bestrophin-2 (Best2) has been indicated as a candidate for being a molecular component of the olfactory Ca(2+)-activated Cl(-) channel. In this study, we have analysed mice lacking Best2. We compared the electrophysiological responses of the olfactory epithelium to odorant stimulation, as well as the properties of Ca(2+)-activated Cl(-) currents in wild-type (WT) and knockout (KO) mice for Best2. Our results confirm that Best2 is expressed in the cilia of olfactory sensory neurons, while odorant responses and Ca(2+)-activated Cl(-) currents were not significantly different between WT and KO mice. Thus, Best2 does not appear to be the main molecular component of the olfactory channel. Further studies are required to determine the function of Best2 in the cilia of olfactory sensory neurons.

  10. Calcium-activated chloride currents in olfactory sensory neurons from mice lacking bestrophin-2

    PubMed Central

    Pifferi, Simone; Dibattista, Michele; Sagheddu, Claudia; Boccaccio, Anna; Al Qteishat, Ahmed; Ghirardi, Filippo; Tirindelli, Roberto; Menini, Anna

    2009-01-01

    Olfactory sensory neurons use a chloride-based signal amplification mechanism to detect odorants. The binding of odorants to receptors in the cilia of olfactory sensory neurons activates a transduction cascade that involves the opening of cyclic nucleotide-gated channels and the entry of Ca2+ into the cilia. Ca2+ activates a Cl− current that produces an efflux of Cl− ions and amplifies the depolarization. The molecular identity of Ca2+-activated Cl− channels is still elusive, although some bestrophins have been shown to function as Ca2+-activated Cl− channels when expressed in heterologous systems. In the olfactory epithelium, bestrophin-2 (Best2) has been indicated as a candidate for being a molecular component of the olfactory Ca2+-activated Cl− channel. In this study, we have analysed mice lacking Best2. We compared the electrophysiological responses of the olfactory epithelium to odorant stimulation, as well as the properties of Ca2+-activated Cl− currents in wild-type (WT) and knockout (KO) mice for Best2. Our results confirm that Best2 is expressed in the cilia of olfactory sensory neurons, while odorant responses and Ca2+-activated Cl− currents were not significantly different between WT and KO mice. Thus, Best2 does not appear to be the main molecular component of the olfactory channel. Further studies are required to determine the function of Best2 in the cilia of olfactory sensory neurons. PMID:19622610

  11. Effects of odor stimulation on antidromic spikes in olfactory sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Scott, John W; Sherrill, Lisa

    2008-12-01

    Spikes were evoked in rat olfactory sensory neuron (OSN) populations by electrical stimulation of the olfactory bulb nerve layer in pentobarbital anesthetized rats. The latencies and recording positions for these compound spikes showed that they originated in olfactory epithelium. Dual simultaneous recordings indicated conduction velocities in the C-fiber range, around 0.5 m/s. These spikes are concluded to arise from antidromically activated olfactory sensory neurons. Electrical stimulation at 5 Hz was used to track changes in the size and latency of the antidromic compound population spike during the odor response. Strong odorant stimuli suppressed the spike size and prolonged its latency. The latency was prolonged throughout long odor stimuli, indicating continued activation of olfactory receptor neuron axons. The amounts of spike suppression and latency change were strongly correlated with the electroolfactogram (EOG) peak size evoked at the same site across odorants and across stimulus intensities. We conclude that the curve of antidromic spike suppression gives a reasonable representation of spiking activity in olfactory sensory neurons driven by odorants and that the correlation of peak spike suppression with the peak EOG shows the accuracy of the EOG as an estimate of intracellular potential in the population of olfactory sensory neurons. In addition, these results have important implications about traffic in olfactory nerve bundles. We did not observe multiple peaks corresponding to stimulated and unstimulated receptor neurons. This suggests synchronization of spikes in olfactory nerve, perhaps by ephaptic interactions. The long-lasting effect on spike latency shows that action potentials continue in the nerve throughout the duration of an odor stimulus in spite of many reports of depolarization block in olfactory receptor neuron cell bodies. Finally, strong odor stimulation caused almost complete block of antidromic spikes. This indicates that a very

  12. Sensory defects in Necdin deficient mice result from a loss of sensory neurons correlated within an increase of developmental programmed cell death

    PubMed Central

    Andrieu, David; Meziane, Hamid; Marly, Fabienne; Angelats, Corinne; Fernandez, Pierre-Alain; Muscatelli, Françoise

    2006-01-01

    Background The human NECDIN gene is involved in a neurodevelopmental disorder, Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS). Previously we reported a mouse Necdin knock-out model with similar defects to PWS patients. Despite the putative roles attributed to Necdin, mainly from in vitro studies, its in vivo function remains unclear. In this study, we investigate sensory-motor behaviour in Necdin deficient mice. We reveal cellular defects and analyse their cause. Results We report sensory differences in Necdin deficient mice compared to wild type animals. These differences led us to investigate sensory neuron development in Necdin deficient mouse embryos. First, we describe the expression pattern of Necdin in developing DRGs and report a reduction of one-third in specified sensory neurons in dorsal roots ganglia and show that this neuronal loss is achieved by E13.5, when DRGs sensory neurons are specified. In parallel, we observed an increase of 41% in neuronal apoptosis during the wave of naturally occurring cell death at E12.5. Since it is assumed that Necdin is a P75NTR interactor, we looked at the P75NTR-expressing cell population in Necdin knock-out embryos. Unexpectedly, Necdin loss of function has no effect on p75NTR expressing neurons suggesting no direct genetic interaction between Necdin and P75NTR in this context. Although we exclude a role of Necdin in axonal outgrowth from spinal sensory neurons in early developmental stages; such a role could occur later in neuronal differentiation. Finally we also exclude an anti-proliferative role of Necdin in developing sensory neurons. Conclusion Overall, our data show clearly that, in early development of the nervous system, Necdin is an anti-apoptotic or survival factor. PMID:17116257

  13. Neuronal intrinsic properties shape naturally evoked sensory inputs in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord

    PubMed Central

    Reali, Cecilia; Russo, Raúl E.

    2013-01-01

    Intrinsic electrophysiological properties arising from specific combinations of voltage-gated channels are fundamental for the performance of small neural networks in invertebrates, but their role in large-scale vertebrate circuits remains controversial. Although spinal neurons have complex intrinsic properties, some tasks produce high-conductance states that override intrinsic conductances, minimizing their contribution to network function. Because the detection and coding of somato-sensory information at early stages probably involves a relatively small number of neurons, we speculated that intrinsic electrophysiological properties are likely involved in the processing of sensory inputs by dorsal horn neurons (DHN). To test this idea, we took advantage of an integrated spinal cord–hindlimbs preparation from turtles allowing the combination of patch-clamp recordings of DHN embedded in an intact network, with accurate control of the extracellular milieu. We found that plateau potentials and low threshold spikes (LTS) -mediated by L- and T-type Ca2+channels, respectively- generated complex dynamics by interacting with naturally evoked synaptic potentials. Inhibitory receptive fields could be changed in sign by activation of the LTS. On the other hand, the plateau potential transformed sensory signals in the time domain by generating persistent activity triggered on and off by brief sensory inputs and windup of the response to repetitive sensory stimulation. Our findings suggest that intrinsic properties dynamically shape sensory inputs and thus represent a major building block for sensory processing by DHN. Intrinsic conductances in DHN appear to provide a mechanism for plastic phenomena such as dynamic receptive fields and sensitization to pain. PMID:24399934

  14. Role of primary afferents in the developmental regulation of motor axon synapse numbers on Renshaw cells.

    PubMed

    Siembab, Valerie C; Gomez-Perez, Laura; Rotterman, Travis M; Shneider, Neil A; Alvarez, Francisco J

    2016-06-15

    Motor function in mammalian species depends on the maturation of spinal circuits formed by a large variety of interneurons that regulate motoneuron firing and motor output. Interneuron activity is in turn modulated by the organization of their synaptic inputs, but the principles governing the development of specific synaptic architectures unique to each premotor interneuron are unknown. For example, Renshaw cells receive, at least in the neonate, convergent inputs from sensory afferents (likely Ia) and motor axons, raising the question of whether they interact during Renshaw cell development. In other well-studied neurons, such as Purkinje cells, heterosynaptic competition between inputs from different sources shapes synaptic organization. To examine the possibility that sensory afferents modulate synaptic maturation on developing Renshaw cells, we used three animal models in which afferent inputs in the ventral horn are dramatically reduced (ER81(-/-) knockout), weakened (Egr3(-/-) knockout), or strengthened (mlcNT3(+/-) transgenic). We demonstrate that increasing the strength of sensory inputs on Renshaw cells prevents their deselection and reduces motor axon synaptic density, and, in contrast, absent or diminished sensory afferent inputs correlate with increased densities of motor axons synapses. No effects were observed on other glutamatergic inputs. We conclude that the early strength of Ia synapses influences their maintenance or weakening during later development and that heterosynaptic influences from sensory synapses during early development regulates the density and organization of motor inputs on mature Renshaw cells.

  15. Distinct mechanosensitive properties of capsaicin-sensitive and -insensitive sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Drew, Liam J; Wood, John N; Cesare, Paolo

    2002-06-15

    Mechanical stimulation of the somata of cultured neonatal rat dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons evoked inward cationic currents that displayed distinct properties between different subsets of cells. The presumptive nociceptor population, defined by capsaicin sensitivity, showed higher thresholds for the induction of an inward current and lower peak currents than other mechanosensitive neurons. A subset of capsaicin-sensitive IB4-positive sensory neurons was refractory to mechanical stimulation. All mechanically activated currents were blocked by gadolinium (IC50 approximately 8 microm) and ruthenium red (IC50 approximately 3 microm). Disruption of the actin cytoskeleton by acute application of 10 microm cytochalasin B inhibited currents much more effectively in capsaicin-insensitive (61%) than capsaicin-sensitive neurons (20%). Extracellular calcium also attenuated mechanosensitive currents and to a greater degree in capsaicin-insensitive neurons than capsaicin-sensitive neurons. These data demonstrate that the somata of different types of cultured sensory neurons have distinct mechanosensitive phenotypes that retain properties associated with nerve terminal mechanosensors in vivo.

  16. TRPA1-mediated responses in trigeminal sensory neurons: interaction between TRPA1 and TRPV1.

    PubMed

    Salas, Margaux M; Hargreaves, Kenneth M; Akopian, Armen N

    2009-04-01

    The transient receptor potential (TRP)A1 channel is involved in the transduction of inflammation-induced noxious stimuli from the periphery. Previous studies have characterized the properties of TRPA1 in heterologous expression systems. However, there is little information on the properties of TRPA1-mediated currents in sensory neurons. A capsaicin-sensitive subset of rat and mouse trigeminal ganglion sensory neurons was activated with TRPA1-specific agonists, mustard oil and the cannabinoid WIN55,212. Mustard oil- and WIN55,212-gated currents exhibited marked variability in their kinetics of activation and acute desensitization. TRPA1-mediated responses in neurons also possess a characteristic voltage dependency with profound outward rectification that is influenced by extracellular Ca(2+) and the type and concentration of TRPA1-specific agonists. Examination of TRPA1-mediated responses in TRPA1-containing cells indicated that the features of neuronal TRPA1 are not duplicated in cells expressing only TRPA1 and, instead, can be restored only when TRPA1 and TRPV1 channels are coexpressed. In summary, our results suggest that TRPA1-mediated responses in sensory neurons have distinct characteristics that can be accounted for by the coexpression of the TRPV1 and TRPA1 channels.

  17. IPP5 inhibits neurite growth in primary sensory neurons by maintaining TGF-β/Smad signaling.

    PubMed

    Han, Qing-Jian; Gao, Nan-Nan; Guo-QiangMa; Zhang, Zhen-Ning; Yu, Wen-Hui; Pan, Jing; Wang, Qiong; Zhang, Xu; Bao, Lan

    2013-01-15

    During nerve regeneration, neurite growth is regulated by both intrinsic molecules and extracellular factors. Here, we found that inhibitor 5 of protein phosphatase 1 (IPP5), a newly identified inhibitory subunit of protein phosphatase 1 (PP1), inhibited neurite growth in primary sensory neurons as an intrinsic regulator. IPP5 was highly expressed in the primary sensory neurons of rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) and was downregulated after sciatic nerve axotomy. Knocking down IPP5 with specific shRNA increased the length of the longest neurite, the total neurite length and the number of neurite ends in cultured rat DRG neurons. Mutation of the PP1-docking motif K(8)IQF(11) or the PP1-inhibiting motif at Thr(34) eliminated the IPP5-induced inhibition of neurite growth. Furthermore, biochemical experiments showed that IPP5 interacted with type I transforming growth factor-β receptor (TβRI) and PP1 and enhanced transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β)/Smad signaling in a PP1-dependent manner. Overexpressing IPP5 in DRG neurons aggravated TGF-β-induced inhibition of neurite growth, which was abolished by blocking PP1 or IPP5 binding to PP1. Blockage of TGF-β signaling with the TβRI inhibitor SB431542 or Smad2 shRNA attenuated the IPP5-induced inhibition of neurite growth. Thus, these data indicate that selectively expressed IPP5 inhibits neurite growth by maintaining TGF-β signaling in primary sensory neurons.

  18. Transient receptor potential channels in sensory neurons are targets of the antimycotic agent clotrimazole.

    PubMed

    Meseguer, Victor; Karashima, Yuji; Talavera, Karel; D'Hoedt, Dieter; Donovan-Rodríguez, Tansy; Viana, Felix; Nilius, Bernd; Voets, Thomas

    2008-01-16

    Clotrimazole (CLT) is a widely used drug for the topical treatment of yeast infections of skin, vagina, and mouth. Common side effects of topical CLT application include irritation and burning pain of the skin and mucous membranes. Here, we provide evidence that transient receptor potential (TRP) channels in primary sensory neurons underlie these unwanted effects of CLT. We found that clinically relevant CLT concentrations activate heterologously expressed TRPV1 and TRPA1, two TRP channels that act as receptors of irritant chemical and/or thermal stimuli in nociceptive neurons. In line herewith, CLT stimulated a subset of capsaicin-sensitive and mustard oil-sensitive trigeminal neurons, and evoked nocifensive behavior and thermal hypersensitivity with intraplantar injection in mice. Notably, CLT-induced pain behavior was suppressed by the TRPV1-antagonist BCTC [(N-(-4-tertiarybutylphenyl)-4-(3-cholorpyridin-2-yl)tetrahydropyrazine-1(2H)-carboxamide)] and absent in TRPV1-deficient mice. In addition, CLT inhibited the cold and menthol receptor TRPM8, and blocked menthol-induced responses in capsaicin- and mustard oil-insensitive trigeminal neurons. The concentration for 50% inhibition (IC50) of inward TRPM8 current was approximately 200 nM, making CLT the most potent known TRPM8 antagonist and a useful tool to discriminate between TRPM8- and TRPA1-mediated responses. Together, our results identify TRP channels in sensory neurons as molecular targets of CLT, and offer means to develop novel CLT preparations with fewer unwanted sensory side effects.

  19. A painful cutaneous laser stimulus evokes responses from single neurons in the human thalamic principal somatic sensory nucleus ventral caudal (Vc).

    PubMed

    Kobayashi, K; Winberry, J; Liu, C C; Treede, R D; Lenz, F A

    2009-05-01

    Cutaneous application of painful radiant heat laser pulses evokes potentials (laser-evoked potentials) that can be recorded from scalp or intracranial electrodes. We have now tested the hypothesis that the response of thalamic neurons to a cutaneous laser stimulus occurs at latencies predicted by the conduction delay between the periphery and the thalamus. We have carried out recordings from human thalamic neurons in the principal sensory nucleus (ventral caudal) in patients undergoing awake surgery for the treatment of tremor. The results demonstrate that many neurons respond to the laser with early and/or late latency peaks of activity, consistent with conduction of the response to the laser stimulus through pathways from Adelta and C fibers to the thalamus. These peaks were of short duration, perhaps due to the somatotopic- and modality-specific arrangements of afferent pathways to the thalamus. The responses of these thalamic neurons to the laser stimulus sometimes included low-threshold spike (LTS) bursts of action potentials, consistent with previous studies of different painful stimuli. A prior study has demonstrated that spike trains characterized by common LTS bursts such as the intermediate (I) category spontaneously change their category more commonly than do those without LTS bursts (NG: nongrouped category) during changes in the cognitive task. Spike trains of laser-responsive neurons were more common in the I category, whereas those of laser nonresponsive neurons were more common in the NG category. Therefore neuronal spike trains in the I category may mediate shifts in endogenous or cognitive pain-related behavior.

  20. Dietary sodium modulates the interaction between efferent and afferent renal nerve activity by altering activation of α2-adrenoceptors on renal sensory nerves.

    PubMed

    Kopp, Ulla C; Cicha, Michael Z; Smith, Lori A; Ruohonen, Saku; Scheinin, Mika; Fritz, Nicolas; Hökfelt, Tomas

    2011-02-01

    Activation of efferent renal sympathetic nerve activity (ERSNA) increases afferent renal nerve activity (ARNA), which then reflexively decreases ERSNA via activation of the renorenal reflexes to maintain low ERSNA. The ERSNA-ARNA interaction is mediated by norepinephrine (NE) that increases and decreases ARNA by activation of renal α(1)-and α(2)-adrenoceptors (AR), respectively. The ERSNA-induced increases in ARNA are suppressed during a low-sodium (2,470 ± 770% s) and enhanced during a high-sodium diet (5,670 ± 1,260% s). We examined the role of α(2)-AR in modulating the responsiveness of renal sensory nerves during low- and high-sodium diets. Immunohistochemical analysis suggested the presence of α(2A)-AR and α(2C)-AR subtypes on renal sensory nerves. During the low-sodium diet, renal pelvic administration of the α(2)-AR antagonist rauwolscine or the AT1 receptor antagonist losartan alone failed to alter the ARNA responses to reflex increases in ERSNA. Likewise, renal pelvic release of substance P produced by 250 pM NE (from 8.0 ± 1.3 to 8.5 ± 1.6 pg/min) was not affected by rauwolscine or losartan alone. However, rauwolscine+losartan enhanced the ARNA responses to reflex increases in ERSNA (4,680 ± 1,240%·s), and renal pelvic release of substance P by 250 pM NE, from 8.3 ± 0.6 to 14.2 ± 0.8 pg/min. During a high-sodium diet, rauwolscine had no effect on the ARNA response to reflex increases in ERSNA or renal pelvic release of substance P produced by NE. Losartan was not examined because of low endogenous ANG II levels in renal pelvic tissue during a high-sodium diet. Increased activation of α(2)-AR contributes to the reduced interaction between ERSNA and ARNA during low-sodium intake, whereas no/minimal activation of α(2)-AR contributes to the enhanced ERSNA-ARNA interaction under conditions of high sodium intake.

  1. Dietary sodium modulates the interaction between efferent and afferent renal nerve activity by altering activation of α2-adrenoceptors on renal sensory nerves

    PubMed Central

    Cicha, Michael Z.; Smith, Lori A.; Ruohonen, Saku; Scheinin, Mika; Fritz, Nicolas; Hökfelt, Tomas

    2011-01-01

    Activation of efferent renal sympathetic nerve activity (ERSNA) increases afferent renal nerve activity (ARNA), which then reflexively decreases ERSNA via activation of the renorenal reflexes to maintain low ERSNA. The ERSNA-ARNA interaction is mediated by norepinephrine (NE) that increases and decreases ARNA by activation of renal α1-and α2-adrenoceptors (AR), respectively. The ERSNA-induced increases in ARNA are suppressed during a low-sodium (2,470 ± 770% s) and enhanced during a high-sodium diet (5,670 ± 1,260% s). We examined the role of α2-AR in modulating the responsiveness of renal sensory nerves during low- and high-sodium diets. Immunohistochemical analysis suggested the presence of α2A-AR and α2C-AR subtypes on renal sensory nerves. During the low-sodium diet, renal pelvic administration of the α2-AR antagonist rauwolscine or the AT1 receptor antagonist losartan alone failed to alter the ARNA responses to reflex increases in ERSNA. Likewise, renal pelvic release of substance P produced by 250 pM NE (from 8.0 ± 1.3 to 8.5 ± 1.6 pg/min) was not affected by rauwolscine or losartan alone. However, rauwolscine+losartan enhanced the ARNA responses to reflex increases in ERSNA (4,680 ± 1,240%·s), and renal pelvic release of substance P by 250 pM NE, from 8.3 ± 0.6 to 14.2 ± 0.8 pg/min. During a high-sodium diet, rauwolscine had no effect on the ARNA response to reflex increases in ERSNA or renal pelvic release of substance P produced by NE. Losartan was not examined because of low endogenous ANG II levels in renal pelvic tissue during a high-sodium diet. Increased activation of α2-AR contributes to the reduced interaction between ERSNA and ARNA during low-sodium intake, whereas no/minimal activation of α2-AR contributes to the enhanced ERSNA-ARNA interaction under conditions of high sodium intake. PMID:21106912

  2. Neuronal correlates of sensory discrimination in the somatosensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Hernández, Adrián; Zainos, Antonio; Romo, Ranulfo

    2000-01-01

    Monkeys are able to discriminate the difference in frequency between two periodic mechanical vibrations applied sequentially to the fingertips. It has been proposed that this ability is mediated by the periodicity of the responses in the quickly adapting (QA) neurons of the primary somatosensory cortex (S1), instead of the average firing rates. We recorded from QA neurons of S1 while monkeys performed the vibrotactile discrimination task. We found that the periodic mechanical vibrations can be represented both in the periodicity and in the firing rate responses to varying degrees across the QA neuronal population. We then computed neurometric functions by using both the periodicity and the firing rate and sought to determine which of these two measures is associated with the psychophysical performance. We found that neurometric thresholds based on the firing rate are very similar to the animal's psychometric thresholds whereas neurometric thresholds based on periodicity are far lower than those thresholds. These results indicate that an observer could solve this task with a precision similar to that of the monkey, based only on the firing rate produced during the stimulus periods. PMID:10811922

  3. Analysing neuronal correlates of the comparison of two sequentially presented sensory stimuli.

    PubMed Central

    Brody, Carlos D; Hernández, Adrián; Zainos, Antonio; Lemus, Luis; Romo, Ranulfo

    2002-01-01

    In a typical sequential sensory discrimination task, subjects are required to make a decision based on comparing a sensory stimulus against the memory trace left by a previous stimulus. What is the neuronal substrate for such comparisons and the resulting decisions? This question was studied by recording neuronal responses in a variety of cortical areas of awake monkeys (Macaca mulatta), trained to carry out a vibrotactile sequential discrimination task. We describe methods to analyse responses obtained during the comparison and decision phases of the task, and describe the resulting findings from recordings in secondary somatosensory cortical area (S2). A subset of neurons in S2 become highly correlated with the monkey's decision in the task. PMID:12626017

  4. Sensory, motor somatic, and autonomic neurons projecting to the porcine cremaster muscle.

    PubMed

    Botti, Maddalena; Minelli, Luisa Bo; Gazza, Ferdinando; Ragionieri, Luisa; Acone, Franca; Panu, Rino; Palmieri, Giovanni

    2006-10-01

    The location of sensory, somatic, and autonomic neurons projecting to the pig cremaster muscle (CM) was studied by means of the retrograde neuronal tracer Fast Blue (FB) technique. FB was randomly injected in the left CM of four impuberal pigs and serial sections of sensory and autonomic ganglia and spinal cord were examined under a fluorescence microscope. Additionally, some indications about the number and size of labeled neurons were given. Sensory pseudounipolar somata were located ipsilaterally in the L2-L6 and S1-S2 dorsal root ganglia, their total number ranging between 125 and 194, their mean diameter between 24 and 89 microm. Somatic multipolar motoneurons were located ipsilaterally in the L2-L4 neuromeres of the spinal cord, their total number ranging between 53 and 169, their mean diameter between 29 and 53 microm. Autonomic multipolar paravertebral ganglia neurons were located ipsilaterally from L1 to S4 and contralaterally from L2 to S2. Their total number ranged from 2,015 to 3,067 and their mean diameter between 25 and 55 microm. The multipolar caudal mesenteric ganglia neurons were located bilaterally, their total number ranging between 14 and 1,408 and their diameter from 22 to 39 microm. In two subjects only, multipolar neurons were also found ipsilaterally in the microganglia of pelvic plexus (2 and 13 neurons). Their mean diameter ranged between 28 and 54 microm. Our study documented that the CM-projecting neurons were located at different neural levels, with a predominance in the autonomic ganglia.

  5. Morphological analysis of Drosophila larval peripheral sensory neuron dendrites and axons using genetic mosaics.

    PubMed

    Karim, M Rezaul; Moore, Adrian W

    2011-11-07

    Nervous system development requires the correct specification of neuron position and identity, followed by accurate neuron class-specific dendritic development and axonal wiring. Recently the dendritic arborization (DA) sensory neurons of the Drosophila larval peripheral nervous system (PNS) have become powerful genetic models in which to elucidate both general and class-specific mechanisms of neuron differentiation. There are four main DA neuron classes (I-IV)(1). They are named in order of increasing dendrite arbor complexity, and have class-specific differences in the genetic control of their differentiation(2-10). The DA sensory system is a practical model to investigate the molecular mechanisms behind the control of dendritic morphology(11-13) because: 1) it can take advantage of the powerful genetic tools available in the fruit fly, 2) the DA neuron dendrite arbor spreads out in only 2 dimensions beneath an optically clear larval cuticle making it easy to visualize with high resolution in vivo, 3) the class-specific diversity in dendritic morphology facilitates a comparative analysis to find key elements controlling the formation of simple vs. highly branched dendritic trees, and 4) dendritic arbor stereotypical shapes of different DA neurons facilitate morphometric statistical analyses. DA neuron activity modifies the output of a larval locomotion central pattern generator(14-16). The different DA neuron classes have distinct sensory modalities, and their activation elicits different behavioral responses(14,16-20). Furthermore different classes send axonal projections stereotypically into the Drosophila larval central nervous system in the ventral nerve cord (VNC)(21). These projections terminate with topographic representations of both DA neuron sensory modality and the position in the body wall of the dendritic field(7,22,23). Hence examination of DA axonal projections can be used to elucidate mechanisms underlying topographic mapping(7,22,23), as well as

  6. Morphological Analysis of Drosophila Larval Peripheral Sensory Neuron Dendrites and Axons Using Genetic Mosaics

    PubMed Central

    Karim, M. Rezaul; Moore, Adrian W.

    2011-01-01

    Nervous system development requires the correct specification of neuron position and identity, followed by accurate neuron class-specific dendritic development and axonal wiring. Recently the dendritic arborization (DA) sensory neurons of the Drosophila larval peripheral nervous system (PNS) have become powerful genetic models in which to elucidate both general and class-specific mechanisms of neuron differentiation. There are four main DA neuron classes (I-IV)1. They are named in order of increasing dendrite arbor complexity, and have class-specific differences in the genetic control of their differentiation2-10. The DA sensory system is a practical model to investigate the molecular mechanisms behind the control of dendritic morphology11-13 because: 1) it can take advantage of the powerful genetic tools available in the fruit fly, 2) the DA neuron dendrite arbor spreads out in only 2 dimensions beneath an optically clear larval cuticle making it easy to visualize with high resolution in vivo, 3) the class-specific diversity in dendritic morphology facilitates a comparative analysis to find key elements controlling the formation of simple vs. highly branched dendritic trees, and 4) dendritic arbor stereotypical shapes of different DA neurons facilitate morphometric statistical analyses. DA neuron activity modifies the output of a larval locomotion central pattern generator14-16. The different DA neuron classes have distinct sensory modalities, and their activation elicits different behavioral responses14,16-20. Furthermore different classes send axonal projections stereotypically into the Drosophila larval central nervous system in the ventral nerve cord (VNC)21. These projections terminate with topographic representations of both DA neuron sensory modality and the position in the body wall of the dendritic field7,22,23. Hence examination of DA axonal projections can be used to elucidate mechanisms underlying topographic mapping7,22,23, as well as the wiring of a

  7. Mechanisms regulating the specificity and strength of muscle afferent inputs in the spinal cord

    PubMed Central

    Mentis, George Z.; Alvarez, Francisco J.; Shneider, Neil A.; Siembab, Valerie C.; O'Donovan, Michael J.

    2010-01-01

    We investigated factors controlling the development of connections between muscle spindle afferents, spinal motor neurons and inhibitory Renshaw cells. Several mutants were examined to establish the role of muscle spindles, muscle spindle-derived NT3 and excess NT3 in determining the specificity and strength of these connections. The findings suggest that although spindle-derived factors are not necessary for the initial formation and specificity of the synapses, spindle-derived NT3 seems necessary for strengthening homonymous connections between Ia afferents and motor neurons during the second postnatal week. We also found evidence for functional monosynaptic connections between sensory afferents and neonatal Renshaw cells although the density of these synapses decreases at P15. We conclude that muscle spindle synapses are weakened on Renshaw cells while they are strengthened on motor neurons. Interestingly, the loss of sensory synapses on Renshaw cells was reversed in mice over-expresssing NT3 in the periphery, suggesting that different levels of NT3 are required for functional maintenance and strengthening of spindle afferent inputs on motor neurons and Renshaw cells. PMID:20536937

  8. Mechanisms regulating the specificity and strength of muscle afferent inputs in the spinal cord.

    PubMed

    Mentis, George Z; Alvarez, Francisco J; Shneider, Neil A; Siembab, Valerie C; O'Donovan, Michael J

    2010-06-01

    We investigated factors controlling the development of connections between muscle spindle afferents, spinal motor neurons, and inhibitory Renshaw cells. Several mutants were examined to establish the role of muscle spindles, muscle spindle-derived NT3, and excess NT3 in determining the specificity and strength of these connections. The findings suggest that although spindle-derived factors are not necessary for the initial formation and specificity of the synapses, spindle-derived NT3 seems necessary for strengthening homonymous connections between Ia afferents and motor neurons during the second postnatal week. We also found evidence for functional monosynaptic connections between sensory afferents and neonatal Renshaw cells although the density of these synapses decreases at P15. We conclude that muscle spindle synapses are weakened on Renshaw cells while they are strengthened on motor neurons. Interestingly, the loss of sensory synapses on Renshaw cells was reversed in mice overexpressing NT3 in the periphery, suggesting that different levels of NT3 are required for functional maintenance and strengthening of spindle afferent inputs on motor neurons and Renshaw cells.

  9. TRPA1 contributes to specific mechanically activated currents and sensory neuron mechanical hypersensitivity.

    PubMed

    Brierley, Stuart M; Castro, Joel; Harrington, Andrea M; Hughes, Patrick A; Page, Amanda J; Rychkov, Grigori Y; Blackshaw, L Ashley

    2011-07-15

    The mechanosensory role of TRPA1 and its contribution to mechanical hypersensitivity in sensory neurons remains enigmatic. We elucidated this role by recording mechanically activated currents in conjunction with TRPA1 over- and under-expression and selective pharmacology. First, we established that TRPA1 transcript, protein and functional expression are more abundant in smaller-diameter neurons than larger-diameter neurons, allowing comparison of two different neuronal populations. Utilising whole cell patch clamping, we applied calibrated displacements to neurites of dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons in short-term culture and recorded mechanically activated currents termed intermediately (IAMCs), rapidly (RAMCs) or slowly adapting (SAMCs). Trpa1 deletion (–/–) significantly reduced maximum IAMC amplitude by 43% in small-diameter neurons compared with wild-type (+/+) neurons. All other mechanically activated currents in small- and large-diameter Trpa1−/− neurons were unaltered. Seventy-three per cent of Trpa1+/+ small-diameter neurons responding to the TRPA1 agonist allyl-isothiocyanate (AITC) displayed IAMCs to neurite displacement, which were significantly enhanced after AITC addition. The TRPA1 antagonist HC-030031 significantly decreased Trpa1+/+ IAMC amplitudes, but only in AITC responsive neurons. Using a transfection system we also showed TRPA1 over-expression in Trpa1+/+ small-diameter neurons increases IAMC amplitude, an effect reversed by HC-030031. Furthermore, TRPA1 introduction into Trpa1−/− small-diameter neurons restored IAMC amplitudes to Trpa1+/+ levels, which was subsequently reversed by HC-030031. In summary our data demonstrate TRPA1 makes a contribution to normal mechanosensation in a specific subset of DRG neurons. Furthermore, they also provide new evidence illustrating mechanisms by which sensitisation or over-expression of TRPA1 enhances nociceptor mechanosensitivity. Overall, these findings suggest TRPA1 has the capacity to

  10. TRPA1 contributes to specific mechanically activated currents and sensory neuron mechanical hypersensitivity

    PubMed Central

    Brierley, Stuart M; Castro, Joel; Harrington, Andrea M; Hughes, Patrick A; Page, Amanda J; Rychkov, Grigori Y; Blackshaw, L Ashley

    2011-01-01

    Abstract The mechanosensory role of TRPA1 and its contribution to mechanical hypersensitivity in sensory neurons remains enigmatic. We elucidated this role by recording mechanically activated currents in conjunction with TRPA1 over- and under-expression and selective pharmacology. First, we established that TRPA1 transcript, protein and functional expression are more abundant in smaller-diameter neurons than larger-diameter neurons, allowing comparison of two different neuronal populations. Utilising whole cell patch clamping, we applied calibrated displacements to neurites of dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons in short-term culture and recorded mechanically activated currents termed intermediately (IAMCs), rapidly (RAMCs) or slowly adapting (SAMCs). Trpa1 deletion (–/–) significantly reduced maximum IAMC amplitude by 43% in small-diameter neurons compared with wild-type (+/+) neurons. All other mechanically activated currents in small- and large-diameter Trpa1−/− neurons were unaltered. Seventy-three per cent of Trpa1+/+ small-diameter neurons responding to the TRPA1 agonist allyl-isothiocyanate (AITC) displayed IAMCs to neurite displacement, which were significantly enhanced after AITC addition. The TRPA1 antagonist HC-030031 significantly decreased Trpa1+/+ IAMC amplitudes, but only in AITC responsive neurons. Using a transfection system we also showed TRPA1 over-expression in Trpa1+/+ small-diameter neurons increases IAMC amplitude, an effect reversed by HC-030031. Furthermore, TRPA1 introduction into Trpa1−/− small-diameter neurons restored IAMC amplitudes to Trpa1+/+ levels, which was subsequently reversed by HC-030031. In summary our data demonstrate TRPA1 makes a contribution to normal mechanosensation in a specific subset of DRG neurons. Furthermore, they also provide new evidence illustrating mechanisms by which sensitisation or over-expression of TRPA1 enhances nociceptor mechanosensitivity. Overall, these findings suggest TRPA1 has the

  11. A Case-controlled Investigation of Pain Experience and Sensory Function in Neuronal Ceroid Lipofuscinosis

    PubMed Central

    Barney, Chantel C.; Hoch, John; Byiers, Breanne; Dimian, Adele; Symons, Frank J.

    2014-01-01

    Objectives This case-control study explored pain experience and expression among individuals with Neuronal Ceroid Lipofuscinosis (NCL) through parental report, tactile-sensory testing, and infrared thermography (IRT). Methods Individuals with NCL (n=8; M age= 14.8 years) and their unaffected siblings (n=8;M age 23.5 years) were characterized in terms of pain response to a brief tactile sensory test (light touch, Von Frey monofilament). During sensory testing, behavioral expression was measured using the Battens Observational Pain Scale (BOPS) and infrared thermography (IRT) was used to quantify changes in skin/eye temperature. Results Individuals with NCL experienced pain frequently and from multiple sources that negatively impacted their lives. Individuals with NCL were reactive to the sensory testing as indexed by significant increased IRT temperature change (p<.001). Across combined sensory conditions, individuals with NCL were significantly more reactive (BOPS total score) to sensory testing compared to siblings (p< .05). Similarly, IRT difference scores between sensory conditions revealed a significant increase in temperature for individuals with NCL compared to siblings (p<.001). Discussion Ongoing reported pain was a problem for the individuals with NCL in this sample. Increased pain expression during the repeated Von Frey filament suggests that the pathophysiology of the ongoing pain may be centrally mediated. PMID:25569218

  12. Cannabinoid receptor antagonists AM251 and AM630 activate TRPA1 in sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Patil, Mayur; Patwardhan, Amol; Salas, Margaux M; Hargreaves, Kenneth M; Akopian, Armen N

    2011-09-01

    Cannabinoid receptor antagonists have been utilized extensively in vivo as well as in vitro, but their selectivity has not been fully examined. We investigated activation of sensory neurons by two cannabinoid antagonists - AM251 and AM630. AM251 and AM630 activated trigeminal (TG) sensory neurons in a concentration-dependent fashion (threshold 1 μM). AM251 and AM630 responses are mediated by the TRPA1 channel in a majority (90-95%) of small-to-medium TG sensory neurons. AM630 (1-100 μM), but not AM251, was a significantly more potent agonist in cells co-expressing both TRPA1 and TRPV1 channels. We next evaluated AM630 and AM251 effects on TRPV1- and TRPA1-mediated responses in TG neurons. Capsaicin (CAP) effects were inhibited by pre-treatment with AM630, but not AM251. Mustard oil (MO) and WIN55,212-2 (WIN) TRPA1 mediated responses were also inhibited by pre-treatment with AM630, but not AM251 (25 uM each). Co-treatment of neurons with WIN and either AM630 or AM251 had opposite effects: AM630 sensitized WIN responses, whereas AM251 inhibited WIN responses. WIN-induced inhibition of CAP responses in sensory neurons was reversed by AM630 pre-treatment and AM251 co-treatment (25 μM each), as these conditions inhibit WIN responses. Hindpaw injections of AM630 and AM251 did not produce nocifensive behaviors. However, both compounds modulated CAP-induced thermal hyperalgesia in wild-type mice and rats, but not TRPA1 null-mutant mice. AMs also partially regulate WIN inhibition of CAP-induced thermal hyperalgesia in a TRPA1-dependent fashion. In summary, these findings demonstrate alternative targets for the cannabinoid antagonists, AM251 and AM630, in peripheral antihyperalgesia which involve certain TRP channels.

  13. Calcium-activated chloride channels in the apical region of mouse vomeronasal sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Dibattista, Michele; Amjad, Asma; Maurya, Devendra Kumar; Sagheddu, Claudia; Montani, Giorgia; Tirindelli, Roberto

    2012-01-01

    The rodent vomeronasal organ plays a crucial role in several social behaviors. Detection of pheromones or other emitted signaling molecules occurs in the dendritic microvilli of vomeronasal sensory neurons, where the binding of molecules to vomeronasal receptors leads to the influx of sodium and calcium ions mainly through the transient receptor potential canonical 2 (TRPC2) channel. To investigate the physiological role played by the increase in intracellular calcium concentration in the apical region of these neurons, we produced localized, rapid, and reproducible increases in calcium concentration with flash photolysis of caged calcium and measured calcium-activated currents with the whole cell voltage-clamp technique. On average, a large inward calcium-activated current of −261 pA was measured at −50 mV, rising with a time constant of 13 ms. Ion substitution experiments showed that this current is anion selective. Moreover, the chloride channel blockers niflumic acid and 4,4′-diisothiocyanatostilbene-2,2′-disulfonic acid partially inhibited the calcium-activated current. These results directly demonstrate that a large chloride current can be activated by calcium in the apical region of mouse vomeronasal sensory neurons. Furthermore, we showed by immunohistochemistry that the calcium-activated chloride channels TMEM16A/anoctamin1 and TMEM16B/anoctamin2 are present in the apical layer of the vomeronasal epithelium, where they largely colocalize with the TRPC2 transduction channel. Immunocytochemistry on isolated vomeronasal sensory neurons showed that TMEM16A and TMEM16B coexpress in the neuronal microvilli. Therefore, we conclude that microvilli of mouse vomeronasal sensory neurons have a high density of calcium-activated chloride channels that may play an important role in vomeronasal transduction. PMID:22732308

  14. Calcium-activated chloride channels in the apical region of mouse vomeronasal sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Dibattista, Michele; Amjad, Asma; Maurya, Devendra Kumar; Sagheddu, Claudia; Montani, Giorgia; Tirindelli, Roberto; Menini, Anna

    2012-07-01

    The rodent vomeronasal organ plays a crucial role in several social behaviors. Detection of pheromones or other emitted signaling molecules occurs in the dendritic microvilli of vomeronasal sensory neurons, where the binding of molecules to vomeronasal receptors leads to the influx of sodium and calcium ions mainly through the transient receptor potential canonical 2 (TRPC2) channel. To investigate the physiological role played by the increase in intracellular calcium concentration in the apical region of these neurons, we produced localized, rapid, and reproducible increases in calcium concentration with flash photolysis of caged calcium and measured calcium-activated currents with the whole cell voltage-clamp technique. On average, a large inward calcium-activated current of -261 pA was measured at -50 mV, rising with a time constant of 13 ms. Ion substitution experiments showed that this current is anion selective. Moreover, the chloride channel blockers niflumic acid and 4,4'-diisothiocyanatostilbene-2,2'-disulfonic acid partially inhibited the calcium-activated current. These results directly demonstrate that a large chloride current can be activated by calcium in the apical region of mouse vomeronasal sensory neurons. Furthermore, we showed by immunohistochemistry that the calcium-activated chloride channels TMEM16A/anoctamin1 and TMEM16B/anoctamin2 are present in the apical layer of the vomeronasal epithelium, where they largely colocalize with the TRPC2 transduction channel. Immunocytochemistry on isolated vomeronasal sensory neurons showed that TMEM16A and TMEM16B coexpress in the neuronal microvilli. Therefore, we conclude that microvilli of mouse vomeronasal sensory neurons have a high density of calcium-activated chloride channels that may play an important role in vomeronasal transduction.

  15. Transcriptome Analysis of Chemically-Induced Sensory Neuron Ablation in Zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    Cox, Jane A.; Zhang, Bo; Pope, Holly M.; Voigt, Mark M.

    2016-01-01

    Peripheral glia are known to have a critical role in the initial response to axon damage and degeneration. However, little is known about the cellular responses of non-myelinating glia to nerve injury. In this study, we analyzed the transcriptomes of wild-type and mutant (lacking peripheral glia) zebrafish larvae that were treated with metronidazole. This treatment allowed us to conditionally and selectively ablate cranial sensory neurons whose axons are ensheathed only by non-myelinating glia. While transcripts representing over 27,000 genes were detected by RNAseq, only a small fraction (~1% of genes) were found to be differentially expressed in response to neuronal degeneration in either line at either 2 hrs or 5 hrs of metronidazole treatment. Analysis revealed that most expression changes (332 out of the total of 458 differentially expressed genes) occurred over a continuous period (from 2 to 5 hrs of metronidazole exposure), with a small number of genes showing changes limited to only the 2 hr (55 genes) or 5 hr (71 genes) time points. For genes with continuous alterations in expression, some of the most meaningful sets of enriched categories in the wild-type line were those involving the inflammatory TNF-alpha and IL6 signaling pathways, oxidoreductase activities and response to stress. Intriguingly, these changes were not observed in the mutant line. Indeed, cluster analysis indicated that the effects of metronidazole treatment on gene expression was heavily influenced by the presence or absence of glia, indicating that the peripheral non-myelinating glia play a significant role in the transcriptional response to sensory neuron degeneration. This is the first transcriptome study of metronidazole-induced neuronal death in zebrafish and the response of non-myelinating glia to sensory neuron degeneration. We believe this study provides important insight into the mechanisms by which non-myelinating glia react to neuronal death and degeneration in sensory

  16. The Role of the Paratrigeminal Nucleus in Vagal Afferent Evoked Respiratory Reflexes: A Neuroanatomical and Functional Study in Guinea Pigs

    PubMed Central

    Driessen, Alexandria K.; Farrell, Michael J.; Mazzone, Stuart B.; McGovern, Alice E.

    2015-01-01

    The respiratory tree receives sensory innervation from the jugular and nodose vagal sensory ganglia. Neurons of these ganglia are derived from embryologically distinct origins and as such demonstrate differing molecular, neurochemical and physiological phenotypes. Furthermore, whereas nodose afferent neurons project to the nucleus of the solitary tract (nTS), recent neuroanatomical studies in rats suggest that jugular neurons have their central terminations in the paratrigeminal nucleus (Pa5). In the present study we confirm that guinea pigs demonstrate a comparable distinction between the brainstem terminations of nodose and jugular ganglia afferents. Thus, microinjection of fluorescently conjugated cholera toxin B (CT-B) neural tracers into the caudal nTS and Pa5 resulted in highly specific retrograde labeling of neurons in the nodose and jugular ganglia, respectively. Whereas, nodose neurons more often expressed 160 KD neurofilament proteins and the alpha3 subunit of Na+/K+ ATPase, significantly more jugular neurons expressed the neuropeptides substance P (SP) and, especially, Calcitonin Gene-Related Peptide (CGRP). Indeed, terminal fibers in the Pa5 compared to the nTS were characterized by their significantly greater expression of CGRP, further supporting the notion that jugular afferents project to trigeminal-related brainstem regions. Electrical stimulation of the guinea pig larynx following selective surgical denervation of the nodose afferent innervation to the larynx (leaving intact the jugular innervation) resulted in stimulus dependent respiratory slowing and eventual apnea. This jugular ganglia neuron mediated response was unaffected by bilateral microinjections of the GABAA agonist muscimol into the nTS, but was abolished by muscimol injected into the Pa5. Taken together these data confirm that jugular and nodose vagal ganglia afferent neurons innervate distinct central circuits and support the notion that multiple peripheral and central pathways

  17. TRESK channel contribution to nociceptive sensory neurons excitability: modulation by nerve injury

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Neuronal hyperexcitability is a crucial phenomenon underlying spontaneous and evoked pain. In invertebrate nociceptors, the S-type leak K+ channel (analogous to TREK-1 in mammals) plays a critical role of in determining neuronal excitability following nerve injury. Few data are available on the role of leak K2P channels after peripheral axotomy in mammals. Results Here we describe that rat sciatic nerve axotomy induces hyperexcitability of L4-L5 DRG sensory neurons and decreases TRESK (K2P18.1) expression, a channel with a major contribution to total leak current in DRGs. While the expression of other channels from the same family did not significantly change, injury markers ATF3 and Cacna2d1 were highly upregulated. Similarly, acute sensory neuron dissociation (in vitro axotomy) produced marked hyperexcitability and similar total background currents compared with neurons injured in vivo. In addition, the sanshool derivative IBA, which blocked TRESK currents in transfected HEK293 cells and DRGs, increased intracellular calcium in 49% of DRG neurons in culture. Most IBA-responding neurons (71%) also responded to the TRPV1 agonist capsaicin, indicating that they were nociceptors. Additional evidence of a biological role of TRESK channels was provided by behavioral evidence of pain (flinching and licking), in vivo electrophysiological evidence of C-nociceptor activation following IBA injection in the rat hindpaw, and increased sensitivity to painful pressure after TRESK knockdown in vivo. Conclusions In summary, our results clearly support an important role of TRESK channels in determining neuronal excitability in specific DRG neurons subpopulations, and show that axonal injury down-regulates TRESK channels, therefore contributing to neuronal hyperexcitability. PMID:21527011

  18. Exposure to Zinc Sulfate Results in Differential Effects on Olfactory Sensory Neuron Subtypes in Adult Zebrafish

    PubMed Central

    Hentig, James T.; Byrd-Jacobs, Christine A.

    2016-01-01

    Zinc sulfate is a known olfactory toxicant, although its specific effects on the olfactory epithelium of zebrafish are unknown. Olfactory organs of adult zebrafish were exposed to zinc sulfate and, after 2, 3, 5, 7, 10 or 14 days, fish were processed for histological, immunohistochemical, ultrastructural, and behavioral analyses. Severe morphological disruption of the olfactory organ was observed two days following zinc sulfate exposure, including fusion of lamellae, epithelial inflammation, and significant loss of anti-calretinin labeling. Scanning electron microscopy revealed the apical surface of the sensory region was absent of ciliated structures, but microvilli were still present. Behavioral analysis showed significant loss of the ability to perceive bile salts and some fish also had no response to amino acids. Over the next several days, olfactory organ morphology, epithelial structure, and anti-calretinin labeling returned to control-like conditions, although the ability to perceive bile salts remained lost until day 14. Thus, exposure to zinc sulfate results in rapid degeneration of the olfactory organ, followed by restoration of morphology and function within two weeks. Zinc sulfate appears to have a greater effect on ciliated olfactory sensory neurons than on microvillous olfactory sensory neurons, suggesting differential effects on sensory neuron subtypes. PMID:27589738

  19. Sexually dimorphic control of gene expression in sensory neurons regulates decision-making behavior in C. elegans.

    PubMed

    Hilbert, Zoë A; Kim, Dennis H

    2017-01-24

    Animal behavior is directed by the integration of sensory information from internal states and the environment. Neuroendocrine regulation of diverse behaviors of Caenorhabditis elegans is under the control of the DAF-7/TGF-β ligand that is secreted from sensory neurons. Here, we show that C. elegans males exhibit an altered, male-specific expression pattern of daf-7 in the ASJ sensory neuron pair with the onset of reproductive maturity, which functions to promote male-specific mate-searching behavior. Molecular genetic analysis of the switch-like regulation of daf-7 expression in the ASJ neuron pair reveals a hierarchy of regulation among multiple inputs-sex, age, nutritional status, and microbial environment-which function in the modulation of behavior. Our results suggest that regulation of gene expression in sensory neurons can function in the integration of a wide array of sensory information and facilitate decision-making behaviors in C. elegans.

  20. Single tactile afferents outperform human subjects in a vibrotactile intensity discrimination task.

    PubMed

    Arabzadeh, Ehsan; Clifford, Colin W G; Harris, Justin A; Mahns, David A; Macefield, Vaughan G; Birznieks, Ingvars

    2014-11-15

    We simultaneously compared the sensitivity of single primary afferent neurons supplying the glabrous skin of the hand and the psychophysical amplitude discrimination thresholds in human subjects for a set of vibrotactile stimuli delivered to the receptive field. All recorded afferents had a dynamic range narrower than the range of amplitudes across which the subjects could discriminate. However, when the vibration amplitude was chosen to be within the steepest part of the afferent's stimulus-response function the response of single afferents, defined as the spike count over the vibration duration (500 ms), was often more sensitive in discriminating vibration amplitude than the perceptual judgment of the participants. We quantified how the neuronal performance depended on the integration window: for short windows the neuronal performance was inferior to the performance of the subject. The neuronal performance progressively improved with increasing spike count duration and reached a level significantly above that of the subjects when the integration window was 250 ms or longer. The superiority in performance of individual neurons over observers could reflect a nonoptimal integration window or be due to the presence of noise between the sensory periphery and the cortical decision stage. Additionally, it could indicate that the range of perceptual sensitivity comes at the cost of discrimination through pooling across neurons with different response functions.

  1. FGF and Notch signaling in sensory neuron formation: a multifactorial approach to understanding signaling pathway hierarchy.

    PubMed

    Voelkel, Jacob E; Harvey, Jamison A; Adams, Jason S; Lassiter, Rhonda N; Stark, Michael R

    2014-11-01

    The ophthalmic trigeminal (opV) placode exclusively gives rise to sensory neurons, making it a good model to study the molecular regulation of sensory neurogenesis. A number of signaling pathways including Wnt, PDGF, FGF, and Notch have been shown to be involved in the process of opV placode cell development. However, the regulatory relationships between these signaling pathways in placode cells are still unknown and have been difficult to study experimentally. Using a novel multifactorial approach in chick embryos that allows for inhibition of FGF throughout the tissue or in individual cells, with simultaneous inactivation of Notch signaling, we investigated the potential interaction between the FGF and Notch signaling pathways in trigeminal sensory neurogenesis. This study builds on prior research describing the individual role of FGF signaling or Notch signaling in opV placode development, where blocking FGF signaling resulted in neurogenesis failure, while blocking Notch signaling resulted in enhanced neurogenesis. Reported here, blocking both pathways simultaneously resulted in a reduction in the number of cells delaminating from the opV placode and undergoing sensory neuron differentiation. Further, Notch inhibition alone did not lead to an increase in the number of cells expressing FGFR4 or in the FGFR4 expression domain, but did result in a highly fragmented basal lamina, which was reversed when blocking FGF signaling. Cumulatively, the results presented here do not support a model of Notch/FGF interdependence, rather that FGF and Notch act in parallel to promote sensory neurogenesis.

  2. The RhoGEF Trio Functions in Sculpting Class Specific Dendrite Morphogenesis in Drosophila Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Iyer, Srividya Chandramouli; Wang, Dennis; Iyer, Eswar Prasad R.; Trunnell, Sarah A.; Meduri, Ramakrishna; Shinwari, Riaz; Sulkowski, Mikolaj J.; Cox, Daniel N.

    2012-01-01

    Background As the primary sites of synaptic or sensory input in the nervous system, dendrites play an essential role in processing neuronal and sensory information. Moreover, the specification of class specific dendrite arborization is critically important in establishing neural connectivity and the formation of functional networks. Cytoskeletal modulation provides a key mechanism for establishing, as well as reorganizing, dendritic morphology among distinct neuronal subtypes. While previous studies have established differential roles for the small GTPases Rac and Rho in mediating dendrite morphogenesis, little is known regarding the direct regulators of these genes in mediating distinct dendritic architectures. Methodology/Principal Findings Here we demonstrate that the RhoGEF Trio is required for the specification of class specific dendritic morphology in dendritic arborization (da) sensory neurons of the Drosophila peripheral nervous system (PNS). Trio is expressed in all da neuron subclasses and loss-of-function analyses indicate that Trio functions cell-autonomously in promoting dendritic branching, field coverage, and refining dendritic outgrowth in various da neuron subtypes. Moreover, overexpression studies demonstrate that Trio acts to promote higher order dendritic branching, including the formation of dendritic filopodia, through Trio GEF1-dependent interactions with Rac1, whereas Trio GEF-2-dependent interactions with Rho1 serve to restrict dendritic extension and higher order branching in da neurons. Finally, we show that de novo dendritic branching, induced by the homeodomain transcription factor Cut, requires Trio activity suggesting these molecules may act in a pathway to mediate dendrite morphogenesis. Conclusions/Significance Collectively, our analyses implicate Trio as an important regulator of class specific da neuron dendrite morphogenesis via interactions with Rac1 and Rho1 and indicate that Trio is required as downstream effector in Cut

  3. Transient receptor potential ion channels in primary sensory neurons as targets for novel analgesics.

    PubMed

    Sousa-Valente, J; Andreou, A P; Urban, L; Nagy, I

    2014-05-01

    The last decade has witnessed an explosion in novel findings relating to the molecules involved in mediating the sensation of pain in humans. Transient receptor potential (TRP) ion channels emerged as the greatest group of molecules involved in the transduction of various physical stimuli into neuronal signals in primary sensory neurons, as well as, in the development of pain. Here, we review the role of TRP ion channels in primary sensory neurons in the development of pain associated with peripheral pathologies and possible strategies to translate preclinical data into the development of effective new analgesics. Based on available evidence, we argue that nociception-related TRP channels on primary sensory neurons provide highly valuable targets for the development of novel analgesics and that, in order to reduce possible undesirable side effects, novel analgesics should prevent the translocation from the cytoplasm to the cell membrane and the sensitization of the channels rather than blocking the channel pore or binding sites for exogenous or endogenous activators.

  4. Direct action and modulating effect of (+)- and (-)-nicotine on ion channels expressed in trigeminal sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Schreiner, Benjamin S P; Lehmann, Ramona; Thiel, Ulrike; Ziemba, Paul M; Beltrán, Leopoldo R; Sherkheli, Muhammad A; Jeanbourquin, Philippe; Hugi, Alain; Werner, Markus; Gisselmann, Günter; Hatt, Hanns

    2014-04-05

    Nicotine sensory perception is generally thought to be mediated by nicotinic acetylcholine (nACh) receptors. However, recent data strongly support the idea that other receptors (e.g., transient receptor potential A1 channel, TRPA1) and other pathways contribute to the detection mechanisms underlying the olfactory and trigeminal cell response to nicotine flavor. This is in accordance with the reported ability of humans to discriminate between (+)- and (-)- nicotine enantiomers. To get a more detailed understanding of the molecular and cellular basis underlying the sensory perception of nicotine, we studied the activity of (+)- and (-)-nicotine on cultured murine trigeminal sensory neurons and on a range of heterologously expressed receptors. The human TRPA1 channel is activated by (-)-nicotine. In this work, we show that (+)-nicotine is also an activator of this channel. Pharmacological experiments using nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and transient receptor potential blockers revealed that trigeminal neurons express one or more unidentified receptors that are sensitive to (+)- and/or (-)-nicotine. Results also indicate that the presence of extracellular calcium ions is required to elicit trigeminal neuron responses to (+)- and (-)-nicotine. Results also show that both (+)-nicotine and (-)-nicotine can block 5-hydroxytryptamine type 3 (5-HT3) receptor-mediated responses in recombinant expression systems and in cultured trigeminal neurons expressing 5-HT3 receptors. Our investigations broaden the spectra of receptors that are targets for nicotine enantiomers and give new insights into the physiological role of nicotine.

  5. The vanilloid receptor TRPV1 is activated and sensitized by local anesthetics in rodent sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Leffler, Andreas; Fischer, Michael J; Rehner, Dietlinde; Kienel, Stephanie; Kistner, Katrin; Sauer, Susanne K; Gavva, Narender R; Reeh, Peter W; Nau, Carla

    2008-02-01

    Local anesthetics (LAs) block the generation and propagation of action potentials by interacting with specific sites of voltage-gated Na(+) channels. LAs can also excite sensory neurons and be neurotoxic through mechanisms that are as yet undefined. Nonspecific cation channels of the transient receptor potential (TRP) channel family that are predominantly expressed by nociceptive sensory neurons render these neurons sensitive to a variety of insults. Here we demonstrated that the LA lidocaine activated TRP channel family receptors TRPV1 and, to a lesser extent, TRPA1 in rodent dorsal root ganglion sensory neurons as well as in HEK293t cells expressing TRPV1 or TRPA1. Lidocaine also induced a TRPV1-dependent release of calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) from isolated skin and peripheral nerve. Lidocaine sensitivity of TRPV1 required segments of the putative vanilloid-binding domain within and adjacent to transmembrane domain 3, was diminished under phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate depletion, and was abrogated by a point mutation at residue R701 in the proximal C-terminal TRP domain. These data identify TRPV1 and TRPA1 as putative key elements of LA-induced nociceptor excitation. This effect is sufficient to release CGRP, a key component of neurogenic inflammation, and warrants investigation into the role of TRPV1 and TRPA1 in LA-induced neurotoxicity.

  6. Activation of μ-opioid receptors inhibits calcium-currents in the vestibular afferent neurons of the rat through a cAMP dependent mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Seseña, Emmanuel; Vega, Rosario; Soto, Enrique

    2014-01-01

    Opioid receptors are expressed in the vestibular endorgans (afferent neurons and hair cells) and are activated by the efferent system, which modulates the discharge of action potentials in vestibular afferent neurons (VANs). In mammals, VANs mainly express the μ opioid-receptor, but the function of this receptors activation and the cellular mechanisms by which they exert their actions in these neurons are poorly studied. To determine the actions of μ opioid receptor (MOR) and cell signaling mechanisms in VANs, we made perforated patch-clamp recordings of VANs that were obtained from postnatal days 7 to 10 (P7–10) rats and then maintained in primary culture. The MOR agonist [D-Ala2, N-Me-Phe4, Gly5-ol]-enkephalin (DAMGO) inhibited the total voltage-gated outward current; this effect was prevented by the perfusion of a Ca2+-free extracellular solution. We then studied the voltage-gated calcium current (Ica) and found that DAMGO Met-enkephalin or endomorphin-1 inhibited the ICa in a dose-response fashion. The effects of DAMGO were prevented by the MOR antagonist (CTAP) or by pertussis toxin (PTX). The use of specific calcium channel blockers showed that MOR activation inhibited T-, L- and N-type ICa. The use of various enzyme activators and inhibitors and of cAMP analogs allowed us to demonstrate that the MOR acts through a cAMP dependent signaling mechanism. In current clamp experiments, MOR activation increased the duration and decreased the amplitude of the action potentials and modulated the discharge produced by current injection. Pre-incubation with PTX occluded MOR activation effect. We conclude that MOR activation inhibits the T-, L- and N-type ICa through activation of a Gαi/o protein that involves a decrease in AC-cAMP-PKA activity. The modulation of ICa may have an impact on the synaptic integration, excitability, and neurotransmitter release from VANs. PMID:24734002

  7. Direct and Indirect Regulation of Spinal Cord Ia Afferent Terminal Formation by the γ-Protocadherins.

    PubMed

    Prasad, Tuhina; Weiner, Joshua A

    2011-01-01

    The Pcdh-γ gene cluster encodes 22 protocadherin adhesion molecules that interact as homophilic multimers and critically regulate synaptogenesis and apoptosis of interneurons in the developing spinal cord. Unlike interneurons, the two primary components of the monosynaptic stretch reflex circuit, dorsal root ganglion sensory neurons and ventral motor neurons (MNs), do not undergo excessive apoptosis in Pcdh-γ(del/del) null mutants, which die shortly after birth. However, as we show here, mutants exhibit severely disorganized Ia proprioceptive afferent terminals in the ventral horn. In contrast to the fine net-like pattern observed in wild-type mice, central Ia terminals in Pcdh-γ mutants appear clumped, and fill the space between individual MNs; quantitative analysis shows a ~2.5-fold increase in the area of terminals. Concomitant with this, there is a 70% loss of the collaterals that Ia afferents extend to ventral interneurons (vINs), many of which undergo apoptosis in the mutants. The Ia afferent phenotype is ameliorated, though not entirely rescued, when apoptosis is blocked in Pcdh-γ null mice by introduction of a Bax null allele. This indicates that loss of vINs, which act as collateral Ia afferent targets, contributes to the disorganization of terminals on motor pools. Restricted mutation of the Pcdh-γ cluster using conditional mutants and multiple Cre transgenic lines (Wnt1-Cre for sensory neurons; Pax2-Cre for vINs; Hb9-Cre for MNs) also revealed a direct requirement for the γ-Pcdhs in Ia neurons and vINs, but not in MNs themselves. Together, these genetic manipulations indicate that the γ-Pcdhs are required for the formation of the Ia afferent circuit in two ways: First, they control the survival of vINs that act as collateral Ia targets; and second, they provide a homophilic molecular cue between Ia afferents and target vINs.

  8. Genetic ablation of GINIP-expressing primary sensory neurons strongly impairs Formalin-evoked pain

    PubMed Central

    Urien, Louise; Gaillard, Stéphane; Lo Re, Laure; Malapert, Pascale; Bohic, Manon; Reynders, Ana; Moqrich, Aziz

    2017-01-01

    Primary sensory neurons are heterogeneous by myriad of molecular criteria. However, the functional significance of this remarkable heterogeneity is just emerging. We precedently described the GINIP+ neurons as a new subpopulation of non peptidergic C-fibers encompassing the free nerve ending cutaneous MRGPRD+ neurons and C-LTMRs. Using our recently generated ginip mouse model, we have been able to selectively ablate the GINIP+ neurons and assess their functional role in the somatosensation. We found that ablation of GINIP+ neurons affected neither the molecular contents nor the central projections of the spared neurons. GINIP-DTR mice exhibited impaired sensation to gentle mechanical stimuli applied to their hairy skin and had normal responses to noxious mechanical stimuli applied to their glabrous skin, under acute and injury-induced conditions. Importantly, loss of GINIP+ neurons significantly altered formalin-evoked first pain and drastically suppressed the second pain response. Given that MRGPRD+ neurons have been shown to be dispensable for formalin-evoked pain, our study suggest that C-LTMRs play a critical role in the modulation of formalin-evoked pain. PMID:28240741

  9. Rapid Integration of Artificial Sensory Feedback during Operant Conditioning of Motor Cortex Neurons.

    PubMed

    Prsa, Mario; Galiñanes, Gregorio L; Huber, Daniel

    2017-02-22

    Neuronal motor commands, whether generating real or neuroprosthetic movements, are shaped by ongoing sensory feedback from the displacement being produced. Here we asked if cortical stimulation could provide artificial feedback during operant conditioning of cortical neurons. Simultaneous two-photon imaging and real-time optogenetic stimulation were used to train mice to activate a single neuron in motor cortex (M1), while continuous feedback of its activity level was provided by proportionally stimulating somatosensory cortex. This artificial signal was necessary to rapidly learn to increase the conditioned activity, detect correct performance, and maintain the learned behavior. Population imaging in M1 revealed that learning-related activity changes are observed in the conditioned cell only, which highlights the functional potential of individual neurons in the neocortex. Our findings demonstrate the capacity of animals to use an artificially induced cortical channel in a behaviorally relevant way and reveal the remarkable speed and specificity at which this can occur.

  10. The Sensory Impact of Nicotine on Noradrenergic and Dopaminergic Neurons of the Nicotine Reward - Addiction Neurocircuitry.

    PubMed

    Rose, Jed E; Dehkordi, Ozra; Manaye, Kebreten F; Millis, Richard M; Cianaki, Salman Ameri; Jayam-Trouth, Annapurni

    2016-04-01

    The sensory experience of smoking is a key component of nicotine addiction known to result, in part, from stimulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) at peripheral sensory nerve endings. Such stimulation of nAChRs is followed by activation of neurons at multiple sites in the mesocorticolimbic reward pathways. However, the neurochemical profiles of CNS cells that mediate the peripheral sensory impact of nicotine remain unknown. In the present study in mice, we first used c-Fos immunohistochemistry to identify CNS cells stimulated by nicotine (NIC, 40 μg/kg, IP) and by a peripherally-acting analog of nicotine, nicotine pyrrolidine methiodide (NIC-PM, 30 μg/kg, IP). Sequential double-labelling was then performed to determine whether noradrenergic and dopaminergic neurons of the nicotine reward-addiction circuitry were primary targets of NIC and NIC-PM. Double-labelling of NIC and/or NIC-PM activated c-Fos immunoreactive cells with tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) showed no apparent c-Fos expression by the dopaminergic cells of the ventral tegmental area (VTA). With the exception of sparse numbers of TH immunoreactive D11 cells, dopamine-containing neurons in other areas of the reward-addiction circuitry, namely periaqueductal gray, and dorsal raphe, were also devoid of c-Fos immunoreactivity. Noradrenergic neurons of locus coeruleus (LC), known to innervate VTA, were activated by both NIC and NIC-PM. These results demonstrate that noradrenergic neurons of LC are among the first structures that are stimulated by single acute IP injection of NIC and NIC-PM. Dopaminergic neurons of VTA and other CNS sites, did not respond to acute IP administration of NIC or NIC-PM by induction of c-Fos.

  11. Extracellular pancuronium affects sodium current in chick embryo sensory neurones.

    PubMed Central

    Maestrone, E.; Magnelli, V.; Nobile, M.; Usai, C.

    1994-01-01

    1. The action of pancuronium on transmembrane sodium conductance was investigated in dorsal root ganglion neurones of chick embryos. The Na+ current was measured by use of the patch-clamp technique in whole-cell configuration. 2. Externally perfused pancuronium (50 microM to 1 mM) reversibly inhibited the current by a fast mechanism of action. Inhibition was concentration-dependent (with a half-effective dose of 170 microM) but not voltage-dependent. 3. The activation and inactivation kinetics of the Na+ current were estimated in pancuronium and in control solution by fitting experimental data with a Hodgkin-Huxley theoretical model. 4. The activation time constant tau m, at negative membrane voltages, was larger in the presence of pancuronium than in the control. In contrast, the inactivation time constant tau h was smaller during drug perfusion at membrane voltages < -10 mV. The steady-state inactivation h infinity was not affected by pancuronium. 5. These results suggest that pancuronium may reduce the sodium current by interacting with the sodium channels in both the resting and open states. PMID:8012707

  12. G9a inhibits CREB-triggered expression of mu opioid receptor in primary sensory neurons following peripheral nerve injury

    PubMed Central

    Liang, Lingli; Zhao, Jian-Yuan; Gu, Xiyao; Wu, Shaogen; Mo, Kai; Xiong, Ming; Marie Lutz, Brianna; Bekker, Alex

    2016-01-01

    Neuropathic pain, a distressing and debilitating disorder, is still poorly managed in clinic. Opioids, like morphine, remain the mainstay of prescribed medications in the treatment of this disorder, but their analgesic effects are highly unsatisfactory in part due to nerve injury-induced reduction of opioid receptors in the first-order sensory neurons of dorsal root ganglia. G9a is a repressor of gene expression. We found that nerve injury-induced increases in G9a and its catalyzed repressive marker H3K9m2 are responsible for epigenetic silencing of Oprm1, Oprk1, and Oprd1 genes in the injured dorsal root ganglia. Blocking these increases rescued dorsal root ganglia Oprm1, Oprk1, and Oprd1 gene expression and morphine or loperamide analgesia and prevented the development of morphine or loperamide-induced analgesic tolerance under neuropathic pain conditions. Conversely, mimicking these increases reduced the expression of three opioid receptors and promoted the mu opioid receptor-gated release of primary afferent neurotransmitters. Mechanistically, nerve injury-induced increases in the binding activity of G9a and H3K9me2 to the Oprm1 gene were associated with the reduced binding of cyclic AMP response element binding protein to the Oprm1 gene. These findings suggest that G9a participates in the nerve injury-induced reduction of the Oprm1 gene likely through G9a-triggered blockage in the access of cyclic AMP response element binding protein to this gene. PMID:27927796

  13. Trigeminothalamic barrelette neurons: natural structural side asymmetries and sensory input-dependent plasticity in adult rats.

    PubMed

    Negredo, P; Martin, Y B; Lagares, A; Castro, J; Villacorta, J A; Avendaño, C

    2009-11-10

    In the rodent trigeminal principal nucleus (Pr5) the barrelette thalamic-projecting neurons relay information from individual whiskers to corresponding contralateral thalamic barreloids. Here we investigated the presence of lateral asymmetries in the dendritic trees of these neurons, and the morphometric changes resulting from input-dependent plasticity in young adult rats. After retrograde labeling with dextran amines from the thalamus, neurons were digitally reconstructed with Neurolucida, and metrically and topologically analyzed with NeuroExplorer. The most unexpected and remarkable result was the observation of side-to-side asymmetries in the barrelette neurons of control rats. These asymmetries more significantly involved the number of low-grade trees and the total dendritic length, which were greater on the left side. Chronic global input loss resulting from infraorbital nerve (IoN) transection, or loss of active touch resulting from whisker clipping in the right neutralized, or even reversed, the observed lateral differences. While results after IoN transection have to be interpreted in the context of partial neuron death in this model, profound bilateral changes were found after haptic loss, which is achieved without inflicting any nerve damage. After whisker trimming, neurons on the left side closely resembled neurons on the right in controls, the natural dendritic length asymmetry being reversed mainly by a shortening of the left trees and a more moderate elongation of the right trees. These results demonstrate that dendritic morphometry is both side- and input-dependent, and that unilateral manipulation of the sensory periphery leads to bilateral morphometric changes in second order neurons of the whisker-barrel system. The presence of anatomical asymmetries in neural structures involved in early stages of somatosensory processing could help explain the expression of sensory input-dependent behavioral asymmetries.

  14. Glucagon-like peptide 1 interacts with ghrelin and leptin to regulate glucose metabolism and food intake through vagal afferent neuron signaling.

    PubMed

    Ronveaux, Charlotte C; Tomé, Daniel; Raybould, Helen E

    2015-04-01

    Emerging evidence has suggested a possible physiologic role for peripheral glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1) in regulating glucose metabolism and food intake. The likely site of action of GLP-1 is on vagal afferent neurons (VANs). The vagal afferent pathway is the major neural pathway by which information about ingested nutrients reaches the central nervous system and influences feeding behavior. Peripheral GLP-1 acts on VANs to inhibit food intake. The mechanism of the GLP-1 receptor (GLP-1R) is unlike other gut-derived receptors; GLP-1Rs change their cellular localization according to feeding status rather than their protein concentrations. It is possible that several gut peptides are involved in mediating GLP-1R translocation. The mechanism of peripheral GLP-1R translocation still needs to be elucidated. We review data supporting the role of peripheral GLP-1 acting on VANs in influencing glucose homeostasis and feeding behavior. We highlight evidence demonstrating that GLP-1 interacts with ghrelin and leptin to induce satiation. Our aim was to understand the mechanism of peripheral GLP-1 in the development of noninvasive antiobesity treatments.

  15. SHANK3 Deficiency Impairs Heat Hyperalgesia and TRPV1 Signaling in Primary Sensory Neurons.

    PubMed

    Han, Qingjian; Kim, Yong Ho; Wang, Xiaoming; Liu, Di; Zhang, Zhi-Jun; Bey, Alexandra L; Lay, Mark; Chang, Wonseok; Berta, Temugin; Zhang, Yan; Jiang, Yong-Hui; Ji, Ru-Rong

    2016-12-21

    Abnormal pain sensitivity is commonly associated with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) and affects the life quality of ASD individuals. SHANK3 deficiency was implicated in ASD and pain dysregulation. Here, we report functional expression of SHANK3 in mouse dorsal root ganglion (DRG) sensory neurons and spinal cord presynaptic terminals. Homozygous and heterozygous Shank3 complete knockout (Δe4-22) results in impaired heat hyperalgesia in inflammatory and neuropathic pain. Specific deletion of Shank3 in Nav1.8-expressing sensory neurons also impairs heat hyperalgesia in homozygous and heterozygous mice. SHANK3 interacts with transient receptor potential subtype V1 (TRPV1) via Proline-rich region and regulates TRPV1 surface expression. Furthermore, capsaicin-induced spontaneous pain, inward currents in DRG neurons, and synaptic currents in spinal cord neurons are all reduced after Shank3 haploinsufficiency. Finally, partial knockdown of SHANK3 expression in human DRG neurons abrogates TRPV1 function. Our findings reveal a peripheral mechanism of SHANK3, which may underlie pain deficits in SHANK3-related ASDs.

  16. A new nonconvex variational approach for sensory neurons receptive field estimation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Drogoul, A.; Aubert, G.; Cessac, B.; Kornprobst, P.

    2016-10-01

    Determining the receptive field of a visual sensory neuron is crucial to characterize the region of the visual field and the stimuli this neuron is sensitive to. We propose a new method to estimate receptive fields by a nonconvex variational approach, thus relaxing the simplifying and unrealistic assumption of convexity made by standard approaches. The method consists of solving a relaxed discrete energy minimization problem using a proximal alternating algorithm. We compare our approach with the classical spike-triggered-average technique on simulated data, considering a typical retinal ganglion cell as ground truth. Results show a high improvement in terms of accuracy and convergence with respect to the duration of the experiment.

  17. A Functional Role for VEGFR1 Expressed in Peripheral Sensory Neurons in Cancer Pain

    PubMed Central

    Selvaraj, Deepitha; Gangadharan, Vijayan; Michalski, Christoph W.; Kurejova, Martina; Stösser, Sebastian; Srivastava, Kshitij; Schweizerhof, Matthias; Waltenberger, Johannes; Ferrara, Napoleone; Heppenstall, Paul; Shibuya, Masabumi; Augustin, Hellmut G.; Kuner, Rohini

    2015-01-01

    Summary Cancer pain is a debilitating disorder and a primary determinant of the poor quality of life. Here, we report a non-vascular role for ligands of the Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF) family in cancer pain. Tumor-derived VEGF-A, PLGF-2, and VEGF-B augment pain sensitivity through selective activation of VEGF receptor 1 (VEGFR1) expressed in sensory neurons in human cancer and mouse models. Sensory-neuron-specific genetic deletion/silencing or local or systemic blockade of VEGFR1 prevented tumor-induced nerve remodeling and attenuated cancer pain in diverse mouse models in vivo. These findings identify a therapeutic potential for VEGFR1-modifying drugs in cancer pain and suggest a palliative effect for VEGF/VEGFR1-targeting anti-angiogenic tumor therapies. PMID:26058077

  18. Interhemispheric modulation of sensory transmission in the primary somatosensory cortex of rats.

    PubMed

    Shin, H C; Won, C K; Jung, S C; Oh, S; Park, S; Sohn, J H

    1997-07-18

    Single unit responses of the primary somatosensory (SI) cortical neurons to the stimulation of the forepaw single digit were monitored in anesthetized rats before and after subcutaneous injection of lidocaine to an ipsilateral homologous receptive field (IHRF). Quantitative determination of the temporal changes of afferent sensory transmission was done by analyzing poststimulus time histograms of unit responses. Temporary deafferentation to the IHRF induced immediate, but reversible suppression of afferent sensory transmission in the SI cortex and this suppression lasts up to 35 min post-deafferentation period (during 10-15 min, -21.81 +/- 5.9%, P < 0.01). This result suggests that temporary absence of afferent inflow from the digit to the SI cortex may exert interhemispheric modulation of afferent sensory transmission in the opposite somatosensory cortex of anesthetized rats.

  19. GRK2 in sensory neurons regulates epinephrine-induced signalling and duration of mechanical hyperalgesia.

    PubMed

    Wang, Huijing; Heijnen, Cobi J; Eijkelkamp, Niels; Garza Carbajal, Anibal; Schedlowski, Manfred; Kelley, Keith W; Dantzer, Robert; Kavelaars, Annemieke

    2011-07-01

    Epinephrine (EPI) contributes to hyperalgesia in inflammatory and stress conditions. EPI signals via adrenoceptors, which are regulated by G protein-coupled receptor kinase 2 (GRK2). We previously reported that GRK2 is decreased in nociceptors during chronic inflammation. Herein, we investigated whether GRK2 modulates EPI-induced mechanical and thermal hyperalgesia by using GRK2(+/-) mice, which express 50% of the GRK2 protein. We demonstrate for the first time that EPI-induced mechanical as well as thermal hyperalgesia is prolonged to approximately 21 days in GRK2(+/-) mice, whereas it lasts only 3 to 4 days in wild-type mice. Using cell- specific GRK2-deficient mice, we further show that a low level of GRK2 in primary sensory neurons is critical for this prolongation of EPI-induced hyperalgesia. Low GRK2 in microglia had only a small effect on EPI-induced hyperalgesia. Low GRK2 in astrocytes did not alter EPI-induced hyperalgesia. EPI-induced hyperalgesia was prolonged similarly in mice with tamoxifen-induced homozygous or heterozygous deletion of GRK2. In terms of EPI signalling pathways, the protein kinase A (PKA) inhibitor H-89 inhibited EPI-induced mechanical hyperalgesia in wild-type mice, whereas H-89 had no effect in mice with low GRK2 in sensory neurons (SNS-GRK2(+/-) mice). Conversely, intraplantar injection of the protein kinase Cε PKCε inhibitor TAT-PKC(εv1-2) inhibited hyperalgesia in sensory neuron specific (SNS)-GRK2(+/-) mice and not in wild-type mice. These results indicate that low GRK2 in primary sensory neurons switches EPI-induced signalling from a protein kinase A-dependent toward a PKCε-dependent pathway that ultimately mediates prolonged EPI-induced hyperalgesia.

  20. ZBTB20 regulates nociception and pain sensation by modulating TRP channel expression in nociceptive sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Ren, An-Jing; Wang, Kai; Zhang, Huan; Liu, Anjun; Ma, Xianhua; Liang, Qing; Cao, Dongmei; Wood, John N; He, David Z; Ding, Yu-Qiang; Yuan, Wen-Jun; Xie, Zhifang; Zhang, Weiping J

    2014-11-05

    In mammals, pain sensation is initiated by the detection of noxious stimuli through specialized transduction ion channels and receptors in nociceptive sensory neurons. Transient receptor potential (TRP) channels are the key sensory transducers that confer nociceptors distinct sensory modalities. However, the regulatory mechanisms about their expression are poorly defined. Here we show that the zinc-finger protein ZBTB20 regulates TRP channels expression in nociceptors. ZBTB20 is highly expressed in nociceptive sensory neurons of dorsal root ganglia. Disruption of ZBTB20 in nociceptors led to a marked decrease in the expression levels of TRPV1, TRPA1 and TRPM8 and the response of calcium flux and whole-cell currents evoked by their respective specific agonists. Phenotypically, the mice lacking ZBTB20 specifically in nociceptors showed a defect in nociception and pain sensation in response to thermal, mechanical and inflammatory stimulation. Our findings point to ZBTB20 as a critical regulator of nociception and pain sensation by modulating TRP channels expression in nociceptors.

  1. Rootletin organizes the ciliary rootlet to achieve neuron sensory function in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Kao, Ling-Rong; Jana, Swadhin C.; Sivan-Loukianova, Elena; Mendonça, Susana; Cabrera, Oscar A.; Singh, Priyanka; Cabernard, Clemens; Eberl, Daniel F.; Bettencourt-Dias, Monica

    2015-01-01

    Cilia are essential for cell signaling and sensory perception. In many cell types, a cytoskeletal structure called the ciliary rootlet links the cilium to the cell body. Previous studies indicated that rootlets support the long-term stability of some cilia. Here we report that Drosophila melanogaster Rootletin (Root), the sole orthologue of the mammalian paralogs Rootletin and C-Nap1, assembles into rootlets of diverse lengths among sensory neuron subtypes. Root mutant neurons lack rootlets and have dramatically impaired sensory function, resulting in behavior defects associated with mechanosensation and chemosensation. Root is required for cohesion of basal bodies, but the cilium structure appears normal in Root mutant neurons. We show, however, that normal rootlet assembly requires centrioles. The N terminus of Root contains a conserved domain and is essential for Root function in vivo. Ectopically expressed Root resides at the base of mother centrioles in spermatocytes and localizes asymmetrically to mother centrosomes in neuroblasts, both requiring Bld10, a basal body protein with varied functions. PMID:26483560

  2. Injured sensory neuron-derived CSF1 induces microglia proliferation and DAP12-dependent pain

    PubMed Central

    Guan, Zhonghui; Kuhn, Julia A.; Wang, Xidao; Colquitt, Bradley; Solorzano, Carlos; Vaman, Smitha; Guan, Andrew K.; Evans-Reinsch, Zoe; Braz, Joao; Devor, Marshall; Abboud-Werner, Sherry L.; Lanier, Lewis L.; Lomvardas, Stavros; Basbaum, Allan I.

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Although microglia are implicated in nerve injury-induced neuropathic pain, how injured sensory neurons engage microglia is unclear. Here we demonstrate that peripheral nerve injury induces de novo expression of colony-stimulating factor 1 (CSF1) in injured sensory neurons. The CSF1 is transported to the spinal cord where it targets the microglial CSF1 receptor (CSF1R). Cre-mediated sensory neuron deletion of Csf1 completely prevented nerve injury-induced mechanical hypersensitivity and reduced microglia activation and proliferation. In contrast, intrathecal injection of CSF1 induces mechanical hypersensitivity and microglial proliferation. Nerve injury also upregulated CSF1 in motoneurons, where it is required for ventral horn microglial activation and proliferation. Downstream of CSF1R, we found that the microglial membrane adapter protein DAP12 is required for both nerve injury- and intrathecal CSF1-induced upregulation of pain-related microglial genes and the ensuing pain, but not for microglia proliferation. Thus, both CSF1 and DAP12 are potential targets for the pharmacotherapy of neuropathic pain. PMID:26642091

  3. Sensory specificity and speciation: a potential neuronal pathway for host fruit odour discrimination in Rhagoletis pomonella

    PubMed Central

    Batra, Srishti; Ramaswamy, Sree Subha; Feder, Jeffrey L.

    2016-01-01

    Behavioural changes in habitat or mate choice can trigger population divergence, leading to speciation. However, little is known about the neurological bases for such changes. Rhagoletis pomonella (Diptera: Tephritidae) is a model for ecological speciation via host plant shifts. Within the past 180 years, Rhagoletis flies infesting hawthorn (Crataegus spp.) shifted to attack domesticated apple (Malus pumila). The two populations differ in their olfactory preferences for apple versus hawthorn fruit. Here, we looked for patterns of sensory organization that may have contributed to this shift by characterizing the morphology, specificity and distribution of olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs) on the antennae of Rhagoletis responding to host fruit and non-host volatiles. Of 28 OSN classes identified, two colocalized OSN pairs were found that specifically responded to the major behavioural attractant and antagonist volatiles for each fly population. A reversal in the response of these OSNs to fruit volatiles, either through a switch in receptor expression between these paired neurons or changes in neuronal projections in the brain, could therefore account for the behavioural difference between apple and hawthorn flies. The finding supports the hypothesis that relatively minor changes in olfactory sensory pathways may contribute to rapid host shifting and divergence in Rhagoletis. PMID:28003447

  4. Ablation of sensory neurons in a genetic model of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma slows initiation and progression of cancer.

    PubMed

    Saloman, Jami L; Albers, Kathryn M; Li, Dongjun; Hartman, Douglas J; Crawford, Howard C; Muha, Emily A; Rhim, Andrew D; Davis, Brian M

    2016-03-15

    Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is characterized by an exuberant inflammatory desmoplastic response. The PDAC microenvironment is complex, containing both pro- and antitumorigenic elements, and remains to be fully characterized. Here, we show that sensory neurons, an under-studied cohort of the pancreas tumor stroma, play a significant role in the initiation and progression of the early stages of PDAC. Using a well-established autochthonous model of PDAC (PKC), we show that inflammation and neuronal damage in the peripheral and central nervous system (CNS) occurs as early as the pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasia (PanIN) 2 stage. Also at the PanIN2 stage, pancreas acinar-derived cells frequently invade along sensory neurons into the spinal cord and migrate caudally to the lower thoracic and upper lumbar regions. Sensory neuron ablation by neonatal capsaicin injection prevented perineural invasion (PNI), astrocyte activation, and neuronal damage, suggesting that sensory neurons convey inflammatory signals from Kras-induced pancreatic neoplasia to the CNS. Neuron ablation in PKC mice also significantly delayed PanIN formation and ultimately prolonged survival compared with vehicle-treated controls (median survival, 7.8 vs. 4.5 mo; P = 0.001). These data establish a reciprocal signaling loop between the pancreas and nervous system, including the CNS, that supports inflammation associated with oncogenic Kras-induced neoplasia. Thus, pancreatic sensory neurons comprise an important stromal cell population that supports the initiation and progression of PDAC and may represent a potential target for prevention in high-risk populations.

  5. Connexin36 identified at morphologically mixed chemical/electrical synapses on trigeminal motoneurons and at primary afferent terminals on spinal cord neurons in adult mouse and rat.

    PubMed

    Bautista, W; McCrea, D A; Nagy, J I

    2014-03-28

    Morphologically mixed chemical/electrical synapses at axon terminals, with the electrical component formed by gap junctions, is common in the CNS of lower vertebrates. In mammalian CNS, evidence for morphologically mixed synapses has been obtained in only a few locations. Here, we used immunofluorescence approaches to examine the localization of the neuronally expressed gap junction forming protein connexin36 (Cx36) in relation to the axon terminal marker vesicular glutamate transporter-1 (vglut1) in the spinal cord and the trigeminal motor nucleus (Mo5) of rat and mouse. In adult rodents, immunolabeling for Cx36 appeared exclusively as Cx36-puncta, and was widely distributed at all rostro-caudal levels in most spinal cord laminae and in the Mo5. A high proportion of Cx36-puncta was co-localized with vglut1, forming morphologically mixed synapses on motoneurons, in intermediate spinal cord lamina, and in regions of medial lamina VII, where vglut1-containing terminals associated with Cx36 converged on neurons adjacent to the central canal. Unilateral transection of lumbar dorsal roots reduced immunolabeling of both vglut1 and Cx36 in intermediate laminae and lamina IX. Further, vglut1-terminals displaying Cx36-puncta were contacted by terminals labeled for glutamic acid decarboxylase65, which is known to be contained in presynaptic terminals on large-diameter primary afferents. Developmentally, mixed synapses begin to emerge in the spinal cord only after the second to third postnatal week and thereafter increase to adult levels. Our findings demonstrate that axon terminals of primary afferent origin form morphologically mixed synapses containing Cx36 in broadly distributed areas of adult rodent spinal cord and Mo5.

  6. Acetyl L-carnitine protects motor neurons and Rohon-Beard sensory neurons against ketamine-induced neurotoxicity in zebrafish embryos.

    PubMed

    Cuevas, Elvis; Trickler, William J; Guo, Xiaoqing; Ali, Syed F; Paule, Merle G; Kanungo, Jyotshna

    2013-01-01

    Ketamine, a non-competitive antagonist of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) type glutamate receptors is commonly used as a pediatric anesthetic. Multiple studies have shown ketamine to be neurotoxic, particularly when administered during the brain growth spurt. Previously, we have shown that ketamine is detrimental to motor neuron development in the zebrafish embryos. Here, using both wild type (WT) and transgenic (hb9:GFP) zebrafish embryos, we demonstrate that ketamine is neurotoxic to both motor and sensory neurons. Drug absorption studies showed that in the WT embryos, ketamine accumulation was approximately 0.4% of the original dose added to the exposure medium. The transgenic embryos express green fluorescent protein (GFP) localized in the motor neurons making them ideal for evaluating motor neuron development and toxicities in vivo. The hb9:GFP zebrafish embryos (28 h post fertilization) treated with 2 mM ketamine for 20 h demonstrated significant reductions in spinal motor neuron numbers, while co-treatment with acetyl L-carnitine proved to be neuroprotective. In whole mount immunohistochemical studies using WT embryos, a similar effect was observed for the primary sensory neurons. In the ketamine-treated WT embryos, the number of primary sensory Rohon-Beard (RB) neurons was significantly reduced compared to that in controls. However, acetyl L-carnitine co-treatment prevented ketamine-induced adverse effects on the RB neurons. These results suggest that acetyl L-carnitine protects both motor and sensory neurons from ketamine-induced neurotoxicity.

  7. Moderate hypoxia influences excitability and blocks dendrotoxin sensitive K+ currents in rat primary sensory neurones

    PubMed Central

    Gruss, Marco; Ettorre, Giovanni; Stehr, Annette Jana; Henrich, Michael; Hempelmann, Gunter; Scholz, Andreas

    2006-01-01

    Hypoxia alters neuronal function and can lead to neuronal injury or death especially in the central nervous system. But little is known about the effects of hypoxia in neurones of the peripheral nervous system (PNS), which survive longer hypoxic periods. Additionally, people have experienced unpleasant sensations during ischemia which are dedicated to changes in conduction properties or changes in excitability in the PNS. However, the underlying ionic conductances in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurones have not been investigated in detail. Therefore we investigated the influence of moderate hypoxia (27.0 ± 1.5 mmHg) on action potentials, excitability and ionic conductances of small neurones in a slice preparation of DRGs of young rats. The neurones responded within a few minutes non-uniformly to moderate hypoxia: changes of excitability could be assigned to decreased outward currents in most of the neurones (77%) whereas a smaller group (23%) displayed increased outward currents in Ringer solution. We were able to attribute most of the reduction in outward-current to a voltage-gated K+ current which activated at potentials positive to -50 mV and was sensitive to 50 nM α-dendrotoxin (DTX). Other toxins that inhibit subtypes of voltage gated K+ channels, such as margatoxin (MgTX), dendrotoxin-K (DTX-K), r-tityustoxin Kα (TsTX-K) and r-agitoxin (AgTX-2) failed to prevent the hypoxia induced reduction. Therefore we could not assign the hypoxia sensitive K+ current to one homomeric KV channel type in sensory neurones. Functionally this K+ current blockade might underlie the increased action potential (AP) duration in these neurones. Altogether these results, might explain the functional impairment of peripheral neurones under moderate hypoxia. PMID:16579848

  8. Functional modulation of IFT kinesins extends the sensory repertoire of ciliated neurons in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    PubMed

    Evans, James E; Snow, Joshua J; Gunnarson, Amy L; Ou, Guangshuo; Stahlberg, Henning; McDonald, Kent L; Scholey, Jonathan M

    2006-02-27

    The diversity of sensory cilia on Caenorhabditis elegans neurons allows the animal to detect a variety of sensory stimuli. Sensory cilia are assembled by intraflagellar transport (IFT) kinesins, which transport ciliary precursors, bound to IFT particles, along the ciliary axoneme for incorporation into ciliary structures. Using fluorescence microscopy of living animals and serial section electron microscopy of high pressure-frozen, freeze-substituted IFT motor mutants, we found that two IFT kinesins, homodimeric OSM-3 kinesin and heterotrimeric kinesin II, function in a partially redundant manner to build full-length amphid channel cilia but are completely redundant for building full-length amphid wing (AWC) cilia. This difference reflects cilia-specific differences in OSM-3 activity, which serves to extend distal singlets in channel cilia but not in AWC cilia, which lack such singlets. Moreover, AWC-specific chemotaxis assays reveal novel sensory functions for kinesin II in these wing cilia. We propose that kinesin II is a "canonical" IFT motor, whereas OSM-3 is an "accessory" IFT motor, and that subtle changes in the deployment or actions of these IFT kinesins can contribute to differences in cilia morphology, cilia function, and sensory perception.

  9. Cutaneous neurturin overexpression alters mechanical, thermal, and cold responsiveness in physiologically identified primary afferents.

    PubMed

    Jankowski, Michael P; Baumbauer, Kyle M; Wang, Ting; Albers, Kathryn M; Davis, Brian M; Koerber, H Richard

    2017-03-01

    Neurotrophic factors play an important role in the regulation of functional properties of sensory neurons under normal and pathological conditions. The GDNF family member neurturin is one such factor that has been linked to modulating responsiveness to peripheral stimuli. Neurturin binds to the GFRα2 receptor, a receptor found primarily in isolectin B4-expressing polymodal cutaneous nociceptors. Previous work has shown that knockout of GFRα2 alters heat, but not mechanical, responses in dissociated sensory neurons and reduces pain-related behaviors during the second phase of the formalin test. Research has also shown that overexpression of neurturin in basal keratinocytes increases behavioral responsiveness to mechanical stimulation and innocuous cooling of the skin without affecting noxious heat responses. Here we directly examined the impact of neurturin overexpression on cutaneous afferent function. We compared physiological responses of individual sensory neurons to mechanical and thermal stimulation of the skin, using an ex vivo skin-nerve-dorsal root ganglion-spinal cord preparation produced from neurturin-overexpressing (NRTN/OE) mice and wild-type littermate controls. We found that neurturin overexpression increases responsiveness to innocuous mechanical stimuli in A-fiber nociceptors, alters thermal responses in the polymodal subpopulation of C-fiber sensory neurons, and changes the relative numbers of mechanically sensitive but thermally insensitive C-fiber afferents. These results demonstrate the potential roles of different functional groups of sensory neurons in the behavioral changes observed in mice overexpressing cutaneous neurturin and highlight the importance of neurturin in regulating cutaneous afferent response properties.NEW & NOTEWORTHY GDNF family neurotrophic factors regulate the development and function of primary sensory neurons. Of these, neurturin has been shown to modulate mechanical and cooling sensitivity behaviorally. Here we show

  10. Central anatomy of individual rapidly adapting low-threshold mechanoreceptors innervating the "hairy" skin of newborn mice: early maturation of hair follicle afferents.

    PubMed

    Woodbury, C J; Ritter, A M; Koerber, H R

    2001-07-30

    Adult skin sensory neurons exhibit characteristic projection patterns in the dorsal horn of the spinal gray matter that are tightly correlated with modality. However, little is known about how these patterns come about during the ontogeny of the distinct subclasses of skin sensory neurons. To this end, we have developed an intact ex vivo somatosensory system preparation in neonatal mice, allowing single, physiologically identified cutaneous afferents to be iontophoretically injected with Neurobiotin for subsequent histological analyses. The present report, centered on rapidly adapting mechanoreceptors, represents the first study of the central projections of identified skin sensory neurons in neonatal animals. Cutaneous afferents exhibiting rapidly adapting responses to sustained natural stimuli were encountered as early as recordings were made. Well-stained representatives of coarse (tylotrich and guard) and fine-diameter (down) hair follicle afferents, along with a putative Pacinian corpuscle afferent, were recovered from 2-7-day-old neonates. All were characterized by narrow, uninflected somal action potentials and generally low mechanical thresholds, and many could be activated via deflection of recently erupted hairs. The central collaterals of hair follicle afferents formed recurrent, flame-shaped arbors that were essentially miniaturized replicas of their adult counterparts, with identical laminar terminations. The terminal arbors of down hair afferents, previously undescribed in rodents, were distinct and consistently occupied a more superficial position than tylotrich and guard hair afferents. Nevertheless, the former extended no higher than the middle of the incipient substantia gelatinosa, leaving a clear gap more dorsally. In all major respects, therefore, hair follicle afferents display the same laminar specificity in neonates as they do in adults. The widely held misperception that their collaterals extend exuberant projections into pain

  11. Actions of neuropoietic cytokines and cyclic AMP in regenerative conditioning of rat primary sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Wu, Dongsheng; Zhang, Yi; Bo, Xuenong; Huang, Wenlong; Xiao, Fang; Zhang, Xinyu; Miao, Tizong; Magoulas, Charalambos; Subang, Maria C; Richardson, Peter M

    2007-03-01

    A conditioning lesion to peripheral axons of primary sensory neurons accelerates regeneration of their central axons in vivo or neurite outgrowth if the neurons are grown in vitro. Previous evidence has implicated neuropoietic cytokines and also cyclic AMP in regenerative conditioning. In experiments reported here, delivery through a lentivirus vector of ciliary neurotrophic factor to the appropriate dorsal root ganglion in rats was sufficient to mimic the conditioning effect of peripheral nerve injury on the regeneration of dorsal spinal nerve root axons. Regeneration in this experimental preparation was also stimulated by intraganglionic injection of dibutyryl cyclic AMP but the effects of ciliary neurotrophic factor and dibutyryl cyclic AMP were not additive. Dibutyryl cyclic AMP injection into the dorsal root ganglion induced mRNAs for two other neuropoietic cytokines, interleukin-6 and leukemia inhibitory factor and increased the accumulation of phosphorylated STAT3 in neuronal nuclei. The in vitro conditioning action of dibutyryl cyclic AMP was partially blocked by a pharmacological inhibitor of Janus kinase 2, a neuropoietic cytokine signaling molecule. We suggest that the beneficial actions of increased cyclic AMP activity on axonal regeneration of primary sensory neurons are mediated, at least in part, through the induction of neuropoietic cytokine synthesis within the dorsal root ganglion.

  12. Microstimulation of primary afferent neurons in the L7 dorsal root ganglia using multielectrode arrays in anesthetized cats: thresholds and recruitment properties

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaunt, R. A.; Hokanson, J. A.; Weber, D. J.

    2009-10-01

    Current research in motor neural prosthetics has focused primarily on issues related to the extraction of motor command signals from the brain (e.g. brain-machine interfaces) to direct the motion of prosthetic limbs. Patients using these types of systems could benefit from a somatosensory neural interface that conveys natural tactile and kinesthetic sensations for the prosthesis. Electrical microstimulation within the dorsal root ganglia (DRG) has been proposed as one method to accomplish this, yet little is known about the recruitment properties of electrical microstimulation in activating nerve fibers in this structure. Current-controlled microstimulation pulses in the range of 1-15 µA (200 µs, leading cathodic pulse) were delivered to the L7 DRG in four anesthetized cats using penetrating microelectrode arrays. Evoked responses and their corresponding conduction velocities (CVs) were measured in the sciatic nerve with a 5-pole nerve cuff electrode arranged as two adjacent tripoles. It was found that in 76% of the 69 electrodes tested, the stimulus threshold was less than or equal to 3 µA, with the lowest recorded threshold being 1.1 µA. The CVs of afferents recruited at threshold had a bimodal distribution with peaks at 70 m s-1 and 85 m s-1. In 53% of cases, the CV of the response at threshold was slower (i.e. smaller diameter fiber) than the CVs of responses observed at increasing stimulation amplitudes. In summary, we found that microstimulation applied through penetrating microelectrodes in the DRG provides selective recruitment of afferent fibers from a range of sensory modalities (as identified by CVs) at very low stimulation intensities. We conclude that the DRG may serve as an attractive location from which to introduce surrogate somatosensory feedback into the nervous system.

  13. Multimodal stimulus coding by a gustatory sensory neuron in Drosophila larvae

    PubMed Central

    van Giesen, Lena; Hernandez-Nunez, Luis; Delasoie-Baranek, Sophie; Colombo, Martino; Renaud, Philippe; Bruggmann, Rémy; Benton, Richard; Samuel, Aravinthan D. T.; Sprecher, Simon G.

    2016-01-01

    Accurate perception of taste information is crucial for animal survival. In adult Drosophila, gustatory receptor neurons (GRNs) perceive chemical stimuli of one specific gustatory modality associated with a stereotyped behavioural response, such as aversion or attraction. We show that GRNs of Drosophila larvae employ a surprisingly different mode of gustatory information coding. Using a novel method for calcium imaging in the larval gustatory system, we identify a multimodal GRN that responds to chemicals of different taste modalities with opposing valence, such as sweet sucrose and bitter denatonium, reliant on different sensory receptors. This multimodal neuron is essential for bitter compound avoidance, and its artificial activation is sufficient to mediate aversion. However, the neuron is also essential for the integration of taste blends. Our findings support a model for taste coding in larvae, in which distinct receptor proteins mediate different responses within the same, multimodal GRN. PMID:26864722

  14. An olfactory sensory map develops in the absence of normal projection neurons or GABAergic interneurons.

    PubMed

    Bulfone, A; Wang, F; Hevner, R; Anderson, S; Cutforth, T; Chen, S; Meneses, J; Pedersen, R; Axel, R; Rubenstein, J L

    1998-12-01

    Olfactory sensory neurons expressing a given odorant receptor project to two topographically fixed glomeruli in the olfactory bulb. We have examined the contribution of different cell types in the olfactory bulb to the establishment of this topographic map. Mice with a homozygous deficiency in Tbr-1 lack most projection neurons, whereas mice with a homozygous deficiency in Dlx-1 and Dlx-2 lack most GABAergic interneurons. Mice bearing a P2-IRES-tau-lacZ allele and deficient in either Tbr-1 or Dlx-1/Dlx-2 reveal the convergence of axons to one medial and one lateral site at positions analogous to those observed in wild-type mice. These observations suggest that the establishment of a topographic map is not dependent upon cues provided by, or synapse formation with, the major neuronal cell types in the olfactory bulb.

  15. The pharmacology of voltage-gated sodium channels in sensory neurones.

    PubMed

    Docherty, Reginald J; Farmer, Clare E

    2009-01-01

    Voltage-gated sodium channels (VGSCs) are vital for the normal functioning of most excitable cells. At least nine distinct functional subtypes of VGSCs are recognized, corresponding to nine genes for their pore-forming alpha-subunits. These have different developmental expression patterns, different tissue distributions in the adult and are differentially regulated at the cellular level by receptor-coupled cell signalling systems. Unsurprisingly, VGSC blockers are found to be useful as drugs in diverse clinical applications where excessive excitability of tissue leads to pathological dysfunction, e.g. epilepsy or cardiac tachyarrhythmias. The effects of most clinically useful VGSC blockers are use-dependent, i.e. their efficacy depends on channel activity. In addition, many natural toxins have been discovered that interact with VGSCs in complex ways and they have been used as experimental probes to study the structure and function of the channels and to better understand how drugs interact with the channels. Here we have attempted to summarize the properties of VGSCs in sensory neurones, discuss how they are regulated by cell signalling systems and we have considered briefly current concepts of their physiological function. We discuss in detail how drugs and toxins interact with archetypal VGSCs and where possible consider how they act on VGSCs in peripheral sensory neurones. Increasingly, drugs that block VGSCs are being used as systemic analgesic agents in chronic pain syndromes, but the full potential for VGSC blockers in this indication is yet to be realized and other applications in sensory dysfunction are also possible. Drugs targeting VGSC subtypes in sensory neurones are likely to provide novel systemic analgesics that are tissue-specific and perhaps even disease-specific, providing much-needed novel therapeutic approaches for the relief of chronic pain.

  16. Inflammatory mediator bradykinin increases population of sensory neurons expressing functional T-type Ca2+ channels

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Dongyang; Liang, Ce; Zhang, Fan; Men, Hongchao; Du, Xiaona; Gamper, Nikita; Zhang, Hailin

    2016-01-01

    T-type Ca2+ channels are important regulators of peripheral sensory neuron excitability. Accordingly, T-type Ca2+ currents are often increased in various pathological pain conditions, such as inflammation or nerve injury. Here we investigated effects of inflammation on functional expression of T-type Ca2+ channels in small-diameter cultured dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons. We found that overnight treatment of DRG cultures with a cocktail of inflammatory mediators bradykinin (BK), adenosine triphosphate (ATP), norepinephrine (NE) and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) strongly increased the population size of the small-diameter neurons displaying low-voltage activated (LVA, T-type) Ca2+ currents while having no effect on the peak LVA current amplitude. When applied individually, BK and ATP also increased the population size of LVA-positive neurons while NE and PGE2 had no effect. The PLC inhibitor U-73122 and B2 receptor antagonist, Hoe-140, both abolished the increase of the population of LVA-positive DRG neurons. Inflammatory treatment did not affect CaV3.2 mRNA or protein levels in DRG cultures. Furthermore, an ubiquitination inhibitor, MG132, did not increase the population of LVA-positive neurons. Our data suggest that inflammatory mediators BK and ATP increase the abundance of LVA-positive DRG neurons in total neuronal population by stimulating the recruitment of a ‘reserve pool’ of CaV3.2 channels, particularly in neurons that do not display measurable LVA currents under control conditions. PMID:26944020

  17. A-Kinase Anchoring Protein 79/150 Coordinates Metabotropic Glutamate Receptor Sensitization of Peripheral Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Szteyn, Kalina; Rowan, Matthew P.; Gomez, Ruben; Du, Junhui; Carlton, Susan M.; Jeske, Nathaniel A.

    2016-01-01

    Glutamate serves as the primary excitatory neurotransmitter in the nervous system. Previous studies have identified a role for glutamate and group I metabotropic receptors as targets for study in peripheral inflammatory pain. However, the coordination of signaling events that transpire from receptor activation to afferent neuronal sensitization has not been explored. Herein, we identify that scaffolding protein A-Kinase Anchoring Protein 79/150 (AKAP150) coordinates increased peripheral thermal sensitivity following group I metabotropic receptor (mGluR5) activation. In both acute and persistent models of thermal somatosensory behavior, we report that mGluR5 sensitization requires AKAP150 expression. Furthermore, electrophysiological approaches designed to record afferent neuronal activity reveal that mGluR5 sensitization also requires functional AKAP150 expression. In dissociated primary afferent neurons, mGluR5 activation increases TRPV1 responses in an AKAP dependent manner through a mechanism that induces AKAP association with TRPV1. Experimental results presented herein identify a mechanism of receptor-driven scaffolding association with ion channel targets. Importantly, this mechanism could prove significant in the search for therapeutic targets that repress episodes of acute pain from becoming chronic in nature. PMID:26172554

  18. Effect of knockout of α2δ-1 on action potentials in mouse sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Margas, Wojciech; Ferron, Laurent; Nieto-Rostro, Manuela; Schwartz, Arnold; Dolphin, Annette C.

    2016-01-01

    Gene deletion of the voltage-gated calcium channel auxiliary subunit α2δ-1 has been shown previously to have a cardiovascular phenotype, and a reduction in mechano- and cold sensitivity, coupled with delayed development of neuropathic allodynia. We have also previously shown that dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neuron calcium channel currents were significantly reduced in α2δ-1 knockout mice. To extend our findings in these sensory neurons, we have examined here the properties of action potentials (APs) in DRG neurons from α2δ-1 knockout mice in comparison to their wild-type (WT) littermates, in order to dissect how the calcium channels that are affected by α2δ-1 knockout are involved in setting the duration of individual APs and their firing frequency. Our main findings are that there is reduced Ca2+ entry on single AP stimulation, particularly in the axon proximal segment, reduced AP duration and reduced firing frequency to a 400 ms stimulation in α2δ-1 knockout neurons, consistent with the expected role of voltage-gated calcium channels in these events. Furthermore, lower intracellular Ca2+ buffering also resulted in reduced AP duration, and a lower frequency of AP firing in WT neurons, mimicking the effect of α2δ-1 knockout. By contrast, we did not obtain any consistent evidence for the involvement of Ca2+-activation of large conductance calcium-activated potassium (BK) and small conductance calcium-activated potassium (SK) channels in these events. In conclusion, the reduced Ca2+ elevation as a result of single AP stimulation is likely to result from the reduced duration of the AP in α2δ-1 knockout sensory neurons. This article is part of the themed issue ‘Evolution brings Ca2+ and ATP together to control life and death’. PMID:27377724

  19. Sensory nerves in lung and airways.

    PubMed

    Lee, Lu-Yuan; Yu, Jerry

    2014-01-01

    Sensory nerves innervating the lung and airways play an important role in regulating various cardiopulmonary functions and maintaining homeostasis under both healthy and disease conditions. Their activities conducted by both vagal and sympathetic afferents are also responsible for eliciting important defense reflexes that protect the lung and body from potential health-hazardous effects of airborne particulates and chemical irritants. This article reviews the morphology, transduction properties, reflex functions, and respiratory sensations of these receptors, focusing primarily on recent findings derived from using new technologies such as neural immunochemistry, isolated airway-nerve preparation, cultured airway neurons, patch-clamp electrophysiology, transgenic mice, and other cellular and molecular approaches. Studies of the signal transduction of mechanosensitive afferents have revealed a new concept of sensory unit and cellular mechanism of activation, and identified additional types of sensory receptors in the lung. Chemosensitive properties of these lung afferents are further characterized by the expression of specific ligand-gated ion channels on nerve terminals, ganglion origin, and responses to the action of various inflammatory cells, mediators, and cytokines during acute and chronic airway inflammation and injuries. Increasing interest and extensive investigations have been focused on uncovering the mechanisms underlying hypersensitivity of these airway afferents, and their role in the manifestation of various symptoms under pathophysiological conditions. Several important and challenging questions regarding these sensory nerves are discussed. Searching for these answers will be a critical step in developing the translational research and effective treatments of airway diseases.

  20. Neurotherapeutics to inhibit exocytosis from sensory neurons for the control of chronic pain.

    PubMed

    Dolly, J Oliver; O'Connell, Marie Ann

    2012-02-01

    There is a pressing unmet need for long-acting and effective therapeutics to alleviate symptoms of the varied forms of chronic pain. As many sufferers do not respond satisfactorily to non-addictive anti-nociceptives, a new treatment has emerged using inhibitors for the release of pain mediators from peripheral sensory nerves to give prolonged benefit. This strategy relies on proteolytically inactivating intra-neuronal SNARE (soluble N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive-factor attachment protein receptors) proteins which are essential for regulated exocytosis of transmitters, peptides and other pain signalling molecules. Success has been achieved with botulinum neurotoxin A (BoNT/A) which targets neuronal acceptors via its heavy chain, becomes endocytosed and translocated into the cytosol where the long-lived protease of its light chain potently and specifically cleaves SNAP-25 (synaptosomal-associated protease of Mr=25k). Encouragingly, clinical trials have shown that local injections of BOTOX(®) (BoNT/A complex) reduce chronic migraine symptoms including frequency and intensity for many months. Several serotypes of the neurotoxin moiety alone have been prepared recombinantly using Escherichia coli, which exhibit optimal neuroparalysis. Moreover, an engineered chimera of BoNT/E in which its binding domain was replaced with that from /A efficaciously inhibits the TRPV1 (transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1)-triggered release of CGRP (calcitonin gene-related peptide) from cultured sensory neurons, and suppresses the resultant excitatory effects in brain slices. A longer acting composite toxin, containing the protease of type E attached to BoNT/A, displays prolonged amelioration of pain symptoms in an animal model of inflammatory pain. This provides proof of principle that therapeutically advantageous features of /E (most robust inhibitor of CGRP release) and /A (targeting to sensory neurons and dramatic extension of the longevity of E protease) can be incorporated

  1. Identification of a signaling cascade that maintains constitutive delta opioid receptor incompetence in peripheral sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Brackley, Allison Doyle; Sarrami, Shayda; Gomez, Ruben; Guerrero, Kristi A; Jeske, Nathaniel A

    2017-04-05

    Mu opioid receptor (MOR) agonists are often used to treat severe pain, but can result in adverse side effects. To circumvent systemic side effects, targeting peripheral opioid receptors is an attractive alternative treatment for severe pain. Activation of the delta opioid receptor (DOR) produces similar analgesia with reduced side effects. However, until primed by inflammation, peripheral DOR is analgesically incompetent, raising interest in the mechanism. We recently identified a novel role for G protein-coupled receptor kinase 2 (GRK2) that renders DOR analgesically incompetent at the plasma membrane. However, the mechanism that maintains constitutive GRK2 association with DOR is unknown. Protein kinase A (PKA) phosphorylation of GRK2 at Ser685 targets it to the plasma membrane. A-kinase anchoring protein 79/150 (AKAP), residing at the plasma membrane in neurons, scaffolds PKA to target proteins to mediate downstream signal. Therefore, we sought to determine whether GRK2-mediated DOR desensitization is directed by PKA via AKAP scaffolding. Membrane fractions from cultured rat sensory neurons following AKAP siRNA-transfection and from AKAP-knockout mice, had less PKA activity, GRK2 Ser685 phosphorylation, and GRK2 plasma membrane targeting than controls. Site-directed mutagenesis revealed that GRK2 Ser685 phosphorylation drives GRK2s association with plasma membrane-associated DOR. Moreover, overexpression studies with AKAP mutants indicated that impaired AKAP-mediated PKA scaffolding significantly reduces DOR-GRK2 association at the plasma membrane and consequently increases DOR activity in sensory neurons without a priming event. These findings suggest that AKAP scaffolds PKA to increase plasma membrane targeting and phosphorylation of GRK2 to maintain DOR analgesic incompetence in peripheral sensory neurons.

  2. Differential response of olfactory sensory neuron populations to copper ion exposure in zebrafish.

    PubMed

    Lazzari, Maurizio; Bettini, Simone; Milani, Liliana; Maurizii, Maria Gabriella; Franceschini, Valeria

    2017-02-01

    The peripheral olfactory system of fish is in direct contact with the external aqueous environment, so dissolved contaminants can easily impair sensory functions and cause neurobehavioral injuries. The olfactory epithelium of fish is arranged in lamellae forming a rosette in the olfactory cavity and contains three main types of olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs): ciliated (cOSNs) and microvillous olfactory sensory neurons (mOSNs), common to all vertebrates, and a third minor group of olfactory neurons, crypt cells, absent in tetrapods. Since copper is a ubiquitously diffusing olfactory toxicant and a spreading contaminant in urban runoff, we investigated the effect of low copper concentration on the three different OSNs in the olfactory epithelium of zebrafish, a model system widely used in biological research. Image analysis was applied for morphometry and quantification of immunohistochemically detected OSNs. Copper exposure resulted in an evident decrease in olfactory epithelium thickness. Moreover, after exposure, the lamellae of the dorsal and ventral halves of the olfactory rosettes showed a different increase in their sensory areas, suggesting a lateral migration of new cells into non-sensory regions. The results of the present study provide clear evidence of a differential response of the three neural cell populations of zebrafish olfactory mucosa after 96h of exposure to copper ions at the sublethal concentration of 30μgL(-1). Densitometric values of cONS, immunostained with anti-G αolf, decreased of about 60% compared to the control. When the fish were transferred to water without copper addition and examined after 3, 10 and 30days, we observed a partial restoration of anti-G αolf staining intensity to normal condition. The recovery of cOSNs appeared sustained by neuronal proliferation, quantified with anti-PCNA immunostaining, in particular in the early days after exposure. The densitometric analysis applied to mOSNs, immunostained with anti-TRPC2

  3. Conserved RNA-binding proteins required for dendrite morphogenesis in Caenorhabditis elegans sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Antonacci, Simona; Forand, Daniel; Wolf, Margaret; Tyus, Courtney; Barney, Julia; Kellogg, Leah; Simon, Margo A; Kerr, Genevieve; Wells, Kristen L; Younes, Serena; Mortimer, Nathan T; Olesnicky, Eugenia C; Killian, Darrell J

    2015-02-10

    The regulation of dendritic branching is critical for sensory reception, cell-cell communication within the nervous system, learning, memory, and behavior. Defects in dendrite morphology are associated with several neurologic disorders; thus, an understanding of the molecular mechanisms that govern dendrite morphogenesis is important. Recent investigations of dendrite morphogenesis have highlighted the importance of gene regulation at the posttranscriptional level. Because RNA-binding proteins mediate many posttranscriptional mechanisms, we decided to investigate the extent to which conserved RNA-binding proteins contribute to dendrite morphogenesis across phyla. Here we identify a core set of RNA-binding proteins that are important for dendrite morphogenesis in the PVD multidendritic sensory neuron in Caenorhabditis elegans. Homologs of each of these genes were previously identified as important in the Drosophila melanogaster dendritic arborization sensory neurons. Our results suggest that RNA processing, mRNA localization, mRNA stability, and translational control are all important mechanisms that contribute to dendrite morphogenesis, and we present a conserved set of RNA-binding proteins that regulate these processes in diverse animal species. Furthermore, homologs of these genes are expressed in the human brain, suggesting that these RNA-binding proteins are candidate regulators of dendrite development in humans.

  4. Modulating Molecular Chaperones Improves Mitochondrial Bioenergetics and Decreases the Inflammatory Transcriptome in Diabetic Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Jiacheng; Pan, Pan; Anyika, Mercy; Blagg, Brian S. J.; Dobrowsky, Rick T.

    2015-01-01

    We have previously demonstrated that modulating molecular chaperones with KU-32, a novobiocin derivative, ameliorates physiologic and bioenergetic deficits of diabetic peripheral neuropathy (DPN). Replacing the coumarin core of KU-32 with a meta-fluorinated biphenyl ring system created KU-596, a novobiocin analogue (novologue) that showed neuroprotective activity in a cell-based assay. The current study sought to determine whether KU-596 offers similar therapeutic potential for treating DPN. Administration of 2–20 mg/kg of KU-596 improved diabetes induced hypoalgesia and sensory neuron bioenergetic deficits in a dose-dependent manner. However, the drug could not improve these neuropathic deficits in diabetic heat shock protein 70 knockout (Hsp70 KO) mice. To gain further insight into the mechanisms by which KU-596 improved DPN, we performed transcriptomic analysis of sensory neuron RNA obtained from diabetic wild-type and Hsp70 KO mice using RNA sequencing. Bioinformatic analysis of the differentially expressed genes indicated that diabetes strongly increased inflammatory pathways and that KU-596 therapy effectively reversed these increases independent of Hsp70. In contrast, the effects of KU-596 on decreasing the expression of genes regulating the production of reactive oxygen species were more Hsp70-dependent. These data indicate that modulation of molecular chaperones by novologue therapy offers an effective approach toward correcting nerve dysfunction in DPN but that normalization of inflammatory pathways alone by novologue therapy seems to be insufficient to reverse sensory deficits associated with insensate DPN. PMID:26161583

  5. Characterization of the primary spinal afferent innervation of the mouse colon using retrograde labelling.

    PubMed

    Robinson, D R; McNaughton, P A; Evans, M L; Hicks, G A

    2004-02-01

    Visceral pain is the most common form of pain produced by disease and is thus of interest in the study of gastrointestinal (GI) complaints such as irritable bowel syndrome, in which sensory signals perceived as GI pain travel in extrinsic afferent neurones with cell bodies in the dorsal root ganglia (DRG). The DRG from which the primary spinal afferent innervation of the mouse descending colon arises are not well defined. This study has combined retrograde labelling and immunohistochemistry to identify and characterize these neurones. Small to medium-sized retrogradely labelled cell bodies were found in the DRG at levels T8-L1 and L6-S1. Calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP)- and P2X3-like immunoreactivity (LI) was seen in 81 and 32%, respectively, of retrogradely labelled cells, and 20% bound the Griffonia simplicifolia-derived isolectin IB4. CGRP-LI and IB4 were co-localized in 22% of retrogradely labelled cells, whilst P2X3-LI and IB4 were co-localized in 7% (vs 34% seen in the whole DRG population). Eighty-two per cent of retrogradely labelled cells exhibited vanilloid receptor 1-like immunoreactivity (VR1-LI). These data suggest that mouse colonic spinal primary afferent neurones are mostly peptidergic CGRP-containing, VR1-LI, C fibre afferents. In contrast to the general DRG population, a subset of neurones exist that are P2X3 receptor-LI but do not bind IB4.

  6. Immunohistological labeling of microtubules in sensory neuron dendrites, tracheae, and muscles in the Drosophila larva body wall.

    PubMed

    Yalgin, Cagri; Karim, M Rezaul; Moore, Adrian W

    2011-11-10

    To understand how differences in complex cell shapes are achieved, it is important to accurately follow microtubule organization. The Drosophila larval body wall contains several cell types that are models to study cell and tissue morphogenesis. For example tracheae are used to examine tube morphogenesis(1), and the dendritic arborization (DA) sensory neurons of the Drosophila larva have become a primary system for the elucidation of general and neuron-class-specific mechanisms of dendritic differentiation(2-5) and degeneration(6). The shape of dendrite branches can vary significantly between neuron classes, and even among different branches of a single neuron(7,8). Genetic studies in DA neurons suggest that differential cytoskeletal organization can underlie morphological differences in dendritic branch shape(4,9-11). We provide a robust immunological labeling method to assay in vivo microtubule organization in DA sensory neuron dendrite arbor (Figures 1, 2, Movie 1). This protocol illustrates the dissection and immunostaining of first instar larva, a stage when active sensory neuron dendrite outgrowth and branching organization is occurring (12,13). In addition to staining sensory neurons, this method achieves robust labeling of microtubule organization in muscles (Movies 2, 3), trachea (Figure 3, Movie 3), and other body wall tissues. It is valuable for investigators wishing to analyze microtubule organization in situ in the body wall when investigating mechanisms that control tissue and cell shape.

  7. Atomoxetine modulates spontaneous and sensory-evoked discharge of locus coeruleus noradrenergic neurons

    PubMed Central

    Bari, A.; Aston-Jones, G.

    2012-01-01

    Atomoxetine (ATM) is a potent norepinephrine (NE) uptake inhibitor and increases both NE and dopamine synaptic levels in prefrontal cortex, where it is thought to exert its beneficial effects on attention and impulsivity. At the behavioral level, ATM has been shown to cause improvements on measures of executive functions, such as response inhibition, working memory and attentional set shifting across different species. However, the exact mechanism of action for ATM’s effects on cognition is still not clear. One possible target for the cognitive enhancing effects of ATM is the noradrenergic locus coeruleus (LC), the only source of NE to key forebrain areas such as cerebral cortex and hippocampus. Although it is known that ATM increases NE availability overall by blocking reuptake of NE, the effects of this agent on impulse activity of LC neurons have not been reported. Here, the effect of ATM (0.1 – 1 mg/kg, ip) on NE-LC neurons was investigated by recording extracellular activity of LC neurons in isoflurane-anesthetized rats. ATM caused a significant decrease of the tonic activity of LC single-units, although leaving intact the sensory-evoked excitatory component of LC phasic response. Moreover, the magnitude of the inhibitory component of LC response to paw stimulation was increased after 1 mg/kg of ATM and its duration was prolonged at 0.3 mg/kg. Together, these effects of ATM produced an increase in the phasic-to-tonic ratio of LC phasic response to sensory stimulation. ATM also modulated the average sensory-evoked local field potential (LFP) and spike-field coherence in LC depending on the dose tested. The lower dose (0.1 mg/kg) significantly decreased early positive and negative components of the sensory-evoked LFP response. Higher doses (0.3–1 mg/kg) initially increased and then decreased the amplitude of components of the evoked fields, whereas the spike-field coherence was enhanced by 1 mg/kg ATM across frequency bands. Finally, coherence between LC

  8. Flash Photolysis of Caged Compounds in the Cilia of Olfactory Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Boccaccio, Anna; Sagheddu, Claudia; Menini, Anna

    2011-01-01

    Photolysis of caged compounds allows the production of rapid and localized increases in the concentration of various physiologically active compounds1. Caged compounds are molecules made physiologically inactive by a chemical cage that can be broken by a flash of ultraviolet light. Here, we show how to obtain patch-clamp recordings combined with photolysis of caged compounds for the study of olfactory transduction in dissociated mouse olfactory sensory neurons. The process of olfactory transduction (Figure 1) takes place in the cilia of olfactory sensory neurons, where odorant binding to receptors leads to the increase of cAMP that opens cyclic nucleotide-gated (CNG) channels2. Ca entry through CNG channels activates Ca-activated Cl channels. We show how to dissociate neurons from the mouse olfactory epithelium3 and how to activate CNG channels or Ca-activated Cl channels by photolysis of caged cAMP4 or caged Ca5. We use a flash lamp6,7 to apply ultraviolet flashes to the ciliary region to uncage cAMP or Ca while patch-clamp recordings are taken to measure the current in the whole-cell voltage-clamp configuration8-11. PMID:22064384

  9. Flash photolysis of caged compounds in the cilia of olfactory sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Boccaccio, Anna; Sagheddu, Claudia; Menini, Anna

    2011-10-29

    Photolysis of caged compounds allows the production of rapid and localized increases in the concentration of various physiologically active compounds. Caged compounds are molecules made physiologically inactive by a chemical cage that can be broken by a flash of ultraviolet light. Here, we show how to obtain patch-clamp recordings combined with photolysis of caged compounds for the study of olfactory transduction in dissociated mouse olfactory sensory neurons. The process of olfactory transduction (Figure 1) takes place in the cilia of olfactory sensory neurons, where odorant binding to receptors leads to the increase of cAMP that opens cyclic nucleotide-gated (CNG) channels. Ca entry through CNG channels activates Ca-activated Cl channels. We show how to dissociate neurons from the mouse olfactory epithelium and how to activate CNG channels or Ca-activated Cl channels by photolysis of caged cAMP or caged Ca. We use a flash lamp to apply ultraviolet flashes to the ciliary region to uncage cAMP or Ca while patch-clamp recordings are taken to measure the current in the whole-cell voltage-clamp configuration.

  10. Impaired basal thermal homeostasis in rats lacking capsaicin-sensitive peripheral small sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Yamashita, Hitoshi; Wang, Zuocheng; Wang, Youxue; Furuyama, Tatsuo; Kontani, Yasuhide; Sato, Yuzo; Mori, Nozomu

    2008-03-01

    We studied the effects of selective loss of capsaicin-sensitive primary sensory neurons on thermosensation and thermoregulation in rats. Neonatal capsaicin treatment in rats caused a remarkable decrease in the number of small-diameter neurons in the dorsal root ganglion (DRG) compared with their number in the control rats. Gene expression analysis for various thermo-sensitive transient receptor potential (TRP) channels indicated marked reductions in the mRNA levels of TRPV1 (70%), TRPM8 (46%) and TRPA1 (64%), but not of TRPV2, in the DRG of capsaicin-treated rats compared with those in the control rats. In addition to the heat and cold insensitivity, capsaicin-treated rats showed lower rectal core temperature, higher skin temperature and decreased sensitivity to ambient temperature alteration under normal housing at room temperature, suggesting impaired thermosensation and change in thermoregulation in the rats. Uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1) expression and the thermogenic ability in brown adipose tissues were attenuated in the capsaicin-treated rats. These results indicate a critical role of capsaicin-sensitive sensory neurons in both heat and cool sensation and hence in basal thermal homeostasis, which is balanced by heat release and production including UCP1 thermogenesis, following sensation of the ambient temperature.

  11. Involvement of substance P present in primary afferent neurones in modulation of cutaneous blood flow in the instep of rat hind paw.

    PubMed Central

    Yonehara, N.; Chen, J. Q.; Imai, Y.; Inoki, R.

    1992-01-01

    1. The participation of small-diameter afferent fibres in the microcirculatory haemodynamics of cutaneous tissue was examined by studies on the effects of antidromic stimulation of primary afferent neurones on cutaneous blood flow (CBF) and tachykinin release into the subcutaneous space in the instep of the hind paw of rats. 2. Antidromic stimulation of the sectioned sciatic nerve induced a biphasic flow response, an initial transient decrease followed by an increase, with no alteration in the blood pressure. 3. Neither phase was affected by pretreatment with phentolamine (0.1 mg kg-1, i.a.), propranolol (0.5 mg kg-1, i.a.), atropine (0.5 mg kg-1, i.a.), methysergide (0.5 mg kg-1, i.a.) or mepyramine (10 mg kg-1, i.a.) plus cimetidine (10 mg kg-1, i.a.), but both were significantly inhibited by pretreatment with capsaicin (50 mg kg-1, s.c.). 4. Spantide (1-2 mumol kg-1, i.a.), a substance P (SP) antagonist, reduced the basal CBF, and also inhibited both phases of the biphasic flow response evoked by antidromic stimulation of the sectioned sciatic nerve. 5. Intra-arterial infusion of SP (0.5 mumol kg-1, i.a.) induced a biphasic flow response similar to that elicited by antidromic stimulation of the sectioned sciatic nerve. 6. Antidromic stimulation of the sectioned sciatic nerve caused a marked increase in SP release into the subcutaneous perfusate of the instep of the rat hind paw, but no detectable increase in neurokinin A release.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:1382777

  12. Thermal stimulation of primary sensory neurons in the rat hind paw: effect of morphine on ERK1/2 phosphorylation, TRPV1 and TRPA1 channel expression.

    PubMed

    Donnerer, Josef; Liebmann, Ingrid

    2012-01-01

    Temperature-sensitive transient receptor potential (TRP) channels or 'thermo-TRP' were stimulated on rat sensory afferents, and the effects on the phosphorylation of ERK1/2, on the regulation of TRPV1 and TRPA1, as well as the pharmacological modulation by the opioid analgesic morphine were investigated. The thermal stimuli were applied to the rat hind paw by immersion into either hot or cold water. Phospho-ERK1/2 (p-ERK1/2) was measured by fluorescence-immunohistochemistry in the lumbar dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons. TRP channel mRNA expression was measured by RT-PCR in the innervating DRGs, and the protein content of TRPV1 and TRPA1 was determined by Western blot in the DRGs and in the sciatic nerve. The thermal stimuli led to a time-dependent increase in the number of DRG cells displaying cytoplasmic and nuclear staining for p-ERK1/2. Morphine partly prevented this increase in ERK1/2 phosphorylation, exerting its effect mainly on the nuclear staining. The mRNA expression for TRPV1 and TRPA1 in the DRG did not change within 24 h following the thermal stimuli. However, the protein content of both TRPV1 and TRPA1 was regulated by the thermal stimulation and by morphine. In the DRGs and in the sciatic nerve, heat or cold stimuli per se tended to decrease TRP protein levels, whereas with morphine pretreatment protein levels were raised. The present findings shed new light on the time-dependent reactions of primary sensory neurons towards irritant thermal stimuli to the skin and on their opioid modulation.

  13. Unmyelinated visceral afferents exhibit frequency dependent action potential broadening while myelinated visceral afferents do not.

    PubMed

    Li, Bai-Yan; Feng, Bin; Tsu, Hwa Y; Schild, John H

    2007-06-21

    Sensory information arising from visceral organ systems is encoded into action potential trains that propagate along afferent fibers to target nuclei in the central nervous system. These information streams range from tight patterns of action potentials that are well synchronized with the sensory transduction event to irregular, patternless discharge with no clear correlation to the sensory input. In general terms these afferent pathways can be divided into unmyelinated and myelinated fiber types. Our laboratory has a long standing interest in the functional differences between these two types of afferents in terms of the preprocessing of sensory information into action potential trains (synchrony, frequency, duration, etc.), the reflexogenic consequences of this sensory input to the central nervous system and the ionic channels that give rise to the electrophysiological properties of these unique cell types. The aim of this study was to determine whether there were any functional differences in the somatic action potential characteristics of unmyelinated and myelinated vagal afferents in response to different rates of sensory nerve stimulation. Our results showed that activity and frequency-dependent widening of the somatic action potential was quite prominent in unmyelinated but not myelinated vagal afferents. Spike broadening often leads to increased influx of Ca(2+) ions that has been associated with a diverse range of modulatory mechanisms both at the cell body and central synaptic terminations (e.g. increased neurotransmitter release.) We conclude that our observations are indicative of fundamentally different mechanisms for neural integration of sensory information arising from unmyelinated and myelinated vagal afferents.

  14. Profound alteration in cutaneous primary afferent activity produced by inflammatory mediators

    PubMed Central

    Smith-Edwards, Kristen M; DeBerry, Jennifer J; Saloman, Jami L; Davis, Brian M; Woodbury, C Jeffery

    2016-01-01

    Inflammatory pain is thought to arise from increased transmission from nociceptors and recruitment of 'silent' afferents. To evaluate inflammation-induced changes, mice expressing GCaMP3 in cutaneous sensory neurons were generated and neuronal responses to mechanical stimulation in vivo before and after subcutaneous infusion of an 'inflammatory soup' (IS) were imaged in an unanesthetized preparation. Infusion of IS rapidly altered mechanical responsiveness in the majority of neurons. Surprisingly, more cells lost, rather than gained, sensitivity and 'silent' afferents that were mechanically insensitive and gained mechanosensitivity after IS exposure were rare. However, the number of formerly 'silent' afferents that became mechanosensitive was increased five fold when the skin was heated briefly prior to infusion of IS. These findings suggest that pain arising from inflamed skin reflects a dramatic shift in the balance of sensory input, where gains and losses in neuronal populations results in novel output that is ultimately interpreted by the CNS as pain. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.20527.001 PMID:27805567

  15. Putamen neurons process both sensory and motor information during a complex task.

    PubMed

    Vicente, Ana F; Bermudez, Maria A; Romero, Maria Del Carmen; Perez, Rogelio; Gonzalez, Francisco

    2012-07-23

    The putamen has classically been considered to be primarily a motor structure. It is involved in a broad range of roles and its neurons have been postulated to function as pattern classifiers of behaviourally significant events. However, its specific role in motor and sensory processing is still unclear. For the purpose of better categorizing putamen neurons, we trained two rhesus monkeys to perform multisensory operant tasks by using complex stimuli such as short videoclips. Trials involved image or soundtrack or both. Some stimuli required a motor response associated to reward, whereas others did not require response and produced no reward. We found that neurons in the putamen showed pure visual responses, action-related activity, and reward responses. Insofar as action-related activity, preparation of movement, movement execution, and withholding of movement involved three different putamen neuron populations. Moreover, our data suggest an involvement of putamen neurons in processing primary rewards and visual events in a complex task, which may contribute to reinforcement learning through stimulus-reward association.

  16. Sensory deprivation regulates the development of the hyperpolarization-activated current in auditory brainstem neurons.

    PubMed

    Hassfurth, Benjamin; Magnusson, Anna K; Grothe, Benedikt; Koch, Ursula

    2009-10-01

    Hyperpolarization-activated and cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN) channels are highly expressed in the superior olivary complex, the primary locus for binaural information processing. This hyperpolarization-activated current (I(h)) regulates the excitability of neurons and enhances the temporally precise analysis of the binaural acoustic cues. By using the whole-cell patch-clamp technique, we examined the properties of I(h) current in neurons of the lateral superior olive (LSO) and the medial nucleus of the trapezoid body (MNTB) before and after hearing onset. Moreover, we tested the hypothesis that I(h) currents are actively regulated by sensory input activity by performing bilateral and unilateral cochlear ablations before hearing onset, resulting in a chronic auditory deprivation. The results show that after hearing onset, I(h) currents are rapidly upregulated in LSO neurons, but change only marginally in neurons of the MNTB. We also found a striking difference in maximal current density, voltage dependence and activation time constant between the LSO and the MNTB in mature-like animals. Following bilateral cochlear ablations before hearing onset, the I(h) currents were scaled up in the LSO and scaled down in the MNTB. Consequently, in the LSO this resulted in a depolarized resting membrane potential and a lower input resistance of these neurons. This type of activity-dependent homeostatic change could thus result in an augmented response to the remaining inputs.

  17. Synaptic diversity enables temporal coding of coincident multi-sensory inputs in single neurons

    PubMed Central

    Chabrol, François P.; Arenz, Alexander; Wiechert, Martin T.; Margrie, Troy W.; DiGregorio, David A.

    2015-01-01

    The ability of the brain to rapidly process information from multiple pathways is critical for reliable execution of complex sensory-motor behaviors, yet the cellular mechanisms underlying a neuronal representation of multimodal stimuli are poorly understood. Here we explored the possibility that the physiological diversity of mossy fiber (MF) to granule cell (GC) synapses within the mouse vestibulocerebellum may contribute to the processing of coincident multisensory information at the level of individual GCs. We found that the strength and short-term dynamics of individual MF-GC synapses can act as biophysical signatures for primary vestibular, secondary vestibular and visual input pathways. The majority of GCs receive inputs from different modalities, which when co-activated, produced enhanced GC firing rates and distinct first spike latencies. Thus, pathway-specific synaptic response properties permit temporal coding of correlated multisensory input by single GCs, thereby enriching sensory representation and facilitating pattern separation. PMID:25821914

  18. Thyroid hormone reduces the loss of axotomized sensory neurons in dorsal root ganglia after sciatic nerve transection in adult rat.

    PubMed

    Schenker, Michel; Kraftsik, Rudolf; Glauser, Liliane; Kuntzer, Thierry; Bogousslavsky, Julien; Barakat-Walter, Ibtissam

    2003-11-01

    We have shown that a local administration of thyroid hormones (T3) at the level of transected rat sciatic nerve induced a significant increase in the number of regenerated axons. To address the question of whether local administration of T3 rescues the axotomized sensory neurons from death, in the present study we estimated the total number of surviving neurons per dorsal root ganglion (DRG) in three experimental group animals. Forty-five days following rat sciatic nerve transection, the lumbar (L4 and L5) DRG were removed from PBS-control, T3-treated as well as from unoperated rats, and serial sections (1 microm) were cut. The physical dissector method was used to estimate the total number of sensory neurons in the DRGs. Our results revealed that in PBS-control rats transection of sciatic nerve leads to a significant (P < 0.001) decrease in the mean number of sensory neurons (8743.8 +/- 748.6) compared with the number of neurons in nontransected ganglion (mean 13,293.7 +/- 1368.4). However, administration of T3 immediately after sciatic nerve transection rescues a great number of axotomized neurons so that their mean neuron number (12,045.8 +/- 929.8) is not significantly different from the mean number of neurons in the nontransected ganglion. In addition, the volume of ganglia showed a similar tendency. These results suggest that T3 rescues a high number of axotomized sensory neurons from death and allows these cells to grow new axons. We believe that the relative preservation of neurons is important in considering future therapeutic approaches of human peripheral nerve lesion and sensory neuropathy.

  19. Stress Induces a Switch of Intracellular Signaling in Sensory Neurons in a Model of Generalized Pain

    PubMed Central

    Khasar, Sachia G.; Burkham, Jennifer; Dina, Olayinka A.; Brown, Adrienne S.; Bogen, Oliver; Alessandri-Haber, Nicole; Green, Paul G.; Reichling, David B.; Levine, Jon D.

    2008-01-01

    Stress dramatically exacerbates pain in diseases such as fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis, but the underlying mechanisms are unknown. We tested the hypothesis that stress causes generalized hyperalgesia by enhancing pro-nociceptive effects of immune mediators. Rats exposed to non-habituating sound stress exhibited no change in mechanical nociceptive threshold, but showed a marked increase in hyperalgesia evoked by local injections of prostaglandin E2 or epinephrine. This enhancement, which developed more than a week after exposure to stress, required concerted action of glucocorticoids and catecholamines at receptors located in the periphery on sensory afferents. The altered response to pronociceptive mediators involved a switch in coupling of their receptors from predominantly stimulatory to inhibitory G-proteins (Gs to Gi), and for prostaglandin E2, emergence of novel dependence on protein kinase C epsilon. Thus, an important mechanism in generalized pain syndromes may be stress-induced co-activation of the hypothalmo-pituitary-adrenal and sympatho-adrenal axes, causing a long-lasting alteration in intracellular signaling pathways, enabling normally innocuous levels of immune mediators to produce chronic hyperalgesia. PMID:18509033

  20. Functional selectivity of kappa opioid receptor agonists in peripheral sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Jamshidi, Raehannah J; Jacobs, Blaine A; Sullivan, Laura C; Chavera, Teresa A; Saylor, Rachel M; Prisinzano, Thomas E; Clarke, William P; Berg, Kelly A

    2015-11-01

    Activation of kappa opioid receptors (KORs) expressed by peripheral sensory neurons that respond to noxious stimuli (nociceptors) can reduce neurotransmission of pain stimuli from the periphery to the central nervous system. We have previously shown that the antinociception dose-response curve for peripherally restricted doses of the KOR agonist (-)-(trans)-3,4-dichloro-N-methyl-N-[2-(1-pyrrolidinyl)cyclohexyl]benzeneacetamide (U50488) has an inverted U shape. Here, we found that the downward phase of the U50488 dose-response curve was blocked by an inhibitor of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) activation U0126. Local administration of the selective KOR agonist salvinorin A (Sal-A), also resulted in an inverted U-shaped curve; however, the downward phase was insensitive to U0126. By contrast, inhibition of c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) partially blocked the downward phase of the dose-response curve to Sal-A, suggesting a role for JNK. In cultures of peripheral sensory neurons, U50488 and Sal-A inhibited adenylyl cyclase activity with similar efficacies; however, their ability to activate ERK and JNK differed. Whereas U50488 activated ERK but not JNK, Sal-A activated JNK but not ERK. Moreover, although both U50488 and Sal-A produced homologous desensitization, desensitization to U50488 was blocked by inhibition of ERK activation, whereas desensitization to Sal-A was blocked by inhibition of JNK. Substitution of an ethoxymethyl ether for the C2 position acetyl group of Sal-A reduced stimulation of JNK, prevented desensitization by ethoxymethyl ether for the C2 position acetyl group of Sal-A, and resulted in a monotonic antinociception dose-response curve. Collectively, these data demonstrate the functional selectivity of KOR ligands for signaling in peripheral sensory neurons, which results in differential effects on behavioral responses in vivo.

  1. Functional Selectivity of Kappa Opioid Receptor Agonists in Peripheral Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Jamshidi, Raehannah J.; Jacobs, Blaine A.; Sullivan, Laura C.; Chavera, Teresa A.; Saylor, Rachel M.; Prisinzano, Thomas E.; Clarke, William P.

    2015-01-01

    Activation of kappa opioid receptors (KORs) expressed by peripheral sensory neurons that respond to noxious stimuli (nociceptors) can reduce neurotransmission of pain stimuli from the periphery to the central nervous system. We have previously shown that the antinociception dose-response curve for peripherally restricted doses of the KOR agonist (–)-(trans)-3,4-dichloro-N-methyl-N-[2-(1-pyrrolidinyl)cyclohexyl]benzeneacetamide (U50488) has an inverted U shape. Here, we found that the downward phase of the U50488 dose-response curve was blocked by an inhibitor of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) activation U0126. Local administration of the selective KOR agonist salvinorin A (Sal-A), also resulted in an inverted U-shaped curve; however, the downward phase was insensitive to U0126. By contrast, inhibition of c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) partially blocked the downward phase of the dose-response curve to Sal-A, suggesting a role for JNK. In cultures of peripheral sensory neurons, U50488 and Sal-A inhibited adenylyl cyclase activity with similar efficacies; however, their ability to activate ERK and JNK differed. Whereas U50488 activated ERK but not JNK, Sal-A activated JNK but not ERK. Moreover, although both U50488 and Sal-A produced homologous desensitization, desensitization to U50488 was blocked by inhibition of ERK activation, whereas desensitization to Sal-A was blocked by inhibition of JNK. Substitution of an ethoxymethyl ether for the C2 position acetyl group of Sal-A reduced stimulation of JNK, prevented desensitization by ethoxymethyl ether for the C2 position acetyl group of Sal-A, and resulted in a monotonic antinociception dose-response curve. Collectively, these data demonstrate the functional selectivity of KOR ligands for signaling in peripheral sensory neurons, which results in differential effects on behavioral responses in vivo. PMID:26297384

  2. Hydroxy-alpha-sanshool activates TRPV1 and TRPA1 in sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Koo, Jae Yeon; Jang, Yongwoo; Cho, Hawon; Lee, Chang-Hun; Jang, Kyoung Hwa; Chang, Yong Ha; Shin, Jongheon; Oh, Uhtaek

    2007-09-01

    Sanshools are major active ingredients of Zanthoxylum piperitum and are used as food additives in East Asia. Sanshools cause irritant, tingling and sometimes paresthetic sensations on the tongue. However, the molecular mechanism underlying the pungent or tingling sensation induced by sanshools is not known. Because many transient receptor potential (TRP) channels are responsible for the sensations induced by various spices and food additives, we expressed 17 TRP channels in human embryonic kidney (HEK) cells and investigated their activation by hydroxy-alpha-sanshool (HalphaSS) or hydroxy-beta-sanshool (HbetaSS) isolated from Zanthoxylum piperitum. It was found that HalphaSS, but not HbetaSS, depolarized sensory neurons with concomitant firing of action potentials and evoked inward currents. Among 17 TRP channels expressed in HEK cells, HalphaSS caused Ca(2+) influx in cells transfected with TRPV1 or TRPA1, and evoked robust inward currents in cells transfected with TRPV1 or TRPA1. In primary cultured sensory neurons, HalphaSS induced inward currents and Ca(2+) influx in a capsazepine-dependent manner. Moreover, HalphaSS-induced currents and Ca(2+) influx were greatly diminished in TRPV1(-/-) mice. HalphaSS evoked licking behavior when injected into a single hind paw of wild-type mice, but this was much reduced in TRPV1-deficient mice. These results indicate that TRPV1 and TRPA1 are molecular targets of HalphaSS in sensory neurons. We conclude that the activations of TRPV1 and TRPA1 by HalphaSS explain its unique pungent, tingling sensation.

  3. Herpes Simplex Virus and Interferon Signaling Induce Novel Autophagic Clusters in Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Katzenell, Sarah

    2016-01-01

    neurons defend against virus infection is poorly understood, but such defense is at least partially mediated by autophagy, an intracellular pathway by which pathogens and other unwanted cargoes are degraded. The study demonstrates and investigates a new autophagic structure that appears to be specific to the interaction between neurotropic herpesviruses and murine primary sensory neurons. This work may therefore have important implications for our understanding of latency and reactivation. PMID:26912623

  4. Identification of genes influencing dendrite morphogenesis in developing peripheral sensory and central motor neurons

    PubMed Central

    Ou, Yimiao; Chwalla, Barbara; Landgraf, Matthias; van Meyel, Donald J

    2008-01-01

    Background Developing neurons form dendritic trees with cell type-specific patterns of growth, branching and targeting. Dendrites of Drosophila peripheral sensory neurons have emerged as a premier genetic model, though the molecular mechanisms that underlie and regulate their morphogenesis remain incompletely understood. Still less is known about this process in central neurons and the extent to which central and peripheral dendrites share common organisational principles and molecular features. To address these issues, we have carried out two comparable gain-of-function screens for genes that influence dendrite morphologies in peripheral dendritic arborisation (da) neurons and central RP2 motor neurons. Results We found 35 unique loci that influenced da neuron dendrites, including five previously shown as required for da dendrite patterning. Several phenotypes were class-specific and many resembled those of known mutants, suggesting that genes identified in this study may converge with and extend known molecular pathways for dendrite development in da neurons. The second screen used a novel technique for cell-autonomous gene misexpression in RP2 motor neurons. We found 51 unique loci affecting RP2 dendrite morphology, 84% expressed in the central nervous system. The phenotypic classes from both screens demonstrate that gene misexpression can affect specific aspects of dendritic development, such as growth, branching and targeting. We demonstrate that these processes are genetically separable. Targeting phenotypes were specific to the RP2 screen, and we propose that dendrites in the central nervous system are targeted to territories defined by Cartesian co-ordinates along the antero-posterior and the medio-lateral axes of the central neuropile. Comparisons between the screens suggest that the dendrites of peripheral da and central RP2 neurons are shaped by regulatory programs that only partially overlap. We focused on one common candidate pathway controlled by the

  5. Substrate Three-Dimensionality Induces Elemental Morphological Transformation of Sensory Neurons on a Physiologic Timescale

    PubMed Central

    Ribeiro, Andreia; Vargo, Shelby; Powell, Elizabeth M.

    2012-01-01

    The natural environment of a neuron is the three-dimensional (3D) tissue. In vivo, embryonic sensory neurons transiently express a bipolar morphology with two opposing neurites before undergoing cytoplasmic and cytoskeletal rearrangement to a more mature pseudo-unipolar axonal arbor before birth. The unipolar morphology is crucial in the adult for correct information transmission from the periphery to the central nervous system. On two-dimensional (2D) substrates this transformation is delayed significantly or absent. We report that a 3D culture platform can invoke the characteristic transformation to the unipolar axonal arbor within a time frame similar to in vivo, overcoming the loss of this essential milestone in 2D substrates. Additionally, 3D substrates alone provided an environment that promoted axonal branching features that reflect morphological patterns observed in vivo. We have also analyzed the involvement of soluble cues in these morphogenic processes by culturing the neurons in the presence and absence of nerve growth factor (NGF), a molecule that plays distinct roles in the development of the peripheral and central nervous systems. Without NGF, both 2D and 3D cultures had significant decreases in the relative population of unipolar neurons as well as shorter neurite lengths and fewer branch points compared to cultures with NGF. Interestingly, branching features of neurons cultured in 3D without NGF resemble those of neurons cultured in 2D with NGF. Therefore, neurons cultured in 3D without NGF lost the ability to differentiate into unipolar neurons, suggesting that this morphological hallmark requires not only presentation of soluble cues like NGF, but also the surrounding 3D presentation of adhesive ligands to allow for realization of the innate morphogenic program. We propose that in a 3D environment, various matrix and soluble cues are presented toward all surfaces of the cell; this optimized milieu allows neurons to elaborate their genuine

  6. Skin incision induces expression of axonal regeneration-related genes in adult rat spinal sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Hill, Caitlin E.; Harrison, Benjamin J.; Rau, Kris K.; Hougland, M. Tyler; Bunge, Mary Bartlett; Mendell, Lorne M.; Petruska, Jeffrey C.

    2010-01-01

    Skin incision and nerve injury both induce painful conditions. Incisional and post-surgical pain is believed to arise primarily from inflammation of tissue and the subsequent sensitization of peripheral and central neurons. The role of axonal regeneration-related processes in development of pain has only been considered when there has been injury to the peripheral nerve itself, even though tissue damage likely induces injury of resident axons. We sought to determine if skin incision would affect expression of regeneration-related genes such as activating transcription factor 3 (ATF3) in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons. ATF3 is absent from DRG neurons of the normal adult rodent, but is induced by injury of peripheral nerves and modulates the regenerative capacity of axons. Image analysis of immunolabeled DRG sections revealed that skin incision led to an increase in the number of DRG neurons expressing ATF3. RT-PCR indicated that other regeneration-associated genes (galanin, GAP-43, Gadd45a) were also increased, further suggesting an injury-like response in DRG neurons. Our finding that injury of skin can induce expression of neuronal injury/regeneration-associated genes may impact how clinical post-surgical pain is investigated and treated. Perspective Tissue injury, even without direct nerve injury, may induce a state of enhanced growth capacity in sensory neurons. Axonal regeneration-associated processes should be considered alongside nerve signal conduction and inflammatory/sensitization processes as possible mechanisms contributing to pain, particularly the transition from acute to chronic pain. PMID:20627820

  7. Hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated channels in mouse vomeronasal sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Dibattista, Michele; Mazzatenta, Andrea; Grassi, Francesca; Tirindelli, Roberto; Menini, Anna

    2008-08-01

    Hyperpolarization-activated currents (Ih) are present in several neurons of the central and peripheral nervous system. However, Ih in neurons of the vomeronasal organ (VNO) is not well characterized. We studied the properties of Ih in sensory neurons from acute slices of mouse VNO. In voltage-clamp studies, Ih was identified by the characteristic kinetics of activation, voltage dependence, and blockage by Cs+ or ZD-7288, two blockers of the Ih. Forskolin, an activator of adenylyl cyclase, shifted the activation curve for Ih to less negative potentials. A comparison of Ih properties in VNO neurons with those of heterologously expressed hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN) channels, together with RT-PCR experiments in VNO, indicate that Ih is caused by HCN2 and/or HCN4 subunits. In current-clamp recordings, blocking Ih with ZD-7288 induced a hyperpolarization of 5.1 mV, an increase in input resistance, a decrease in the sensitivity to elicit action potentials in response to small current injections, and did not modify the frequency of action potentials elicited by a large current injection. It has been shown that in VNO neurons some pheromones induce a decrease in cAMP concentration, but the physiological role of cAMP is unknown. After application of blockers of adenylyl cyclase, we measured a hyperpolarization of 5.1 mV in 11 of 14 neurons, suggesting that basal levels of cAMP could modulate the resting potential. In conclusion, these results show that mouse VNO neurons express HCN2 and/or HCN4 subunits and that Ih contributes to setting the resting membrane potential and to increase excitability at stimulus threshold.

  8. The growth cones of Aplysia sensory neurons: Modulation by serotonin of action potential duration and single potassium channel currents.

    PubMed

    Belardetti, F; Schacher, S; Kandel, E R; Siegelbaum, S A

    1986-09-01

    Serotonin (5-HT) closes a specific K channel ("S") in the cell body of Aplysia sensory neurons, resulting in a slow excitatory postsynaptic potential and spike broadening. To determine whether the S channel is present and can be modulated in processes of the neuron other than the cell body, we studied the effects of 5-HT on growth cones of sensory neurons in culture by using the patch-clamp technique. Simultaneous application of 5-HT to the cell body and to the growth cones of sensory neurons produced, in both, a slow depolarization of approximately 5 mV. Also, 5-HT produced a lengthening of the duration of action potential in the growth cone and cell body by 20-30%. Similar effects were observed in isolated growth cones that had been severed from the rest of the neuron, implying that the growth cones contain all the molecular components (i.e., receptors, channels, cAMP cascade) necessary for 5-HT action. Cell-attached patch-clamp recordings demonstrated the presence of S channels in sensory neuron growth cones. Application of serotonin to the bath produced long-lasting all-or-none closures of these channels in a manner identical to the previously characterized action of 5-HT in the cell body. Thus, channel modulation is not restricted to the cell body and probably occurs throughout the sensory neuron. This strengthens the view that S-channel modulation may also occur at the sensory neuron presynaptic terminal, where it could play a role in the presynaptic facilitation produced by 5-HT.

  9. DNA methyltransferase DNMT3a contributes to neuropathic pain by repressing Kcna2 in primary afferent neurons

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Jian-Yuan; Liang, Lingli; Gu, Xiyao; Li, Zhisong; Wu, Shaogen; Sun, Linlin; Atianjoh, Fidelis E.; Feng, Jian; Mo, Kai; Jia, Shushan; Lutz, Brianna Marie; Bekker, Alex; Nestler, Eric J.; Tao, Yuan-Xiang

    2017-01-01

    Nerve injury induces changes in gene transcription in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons, which may contribute to nerve injury-induced neuropathic pain. DNA methylation represses gene expression. Here, we report that peripheral nerve injury increases expression of the DNA methyltransferase DNMT3a in the injured DRG neurons via the activation of the transcription factor octamer transcription factor 1. Blocking this increase prevents nerve injury-induced methylation of the voltage-dependent potassium (Kv) channel subunit Kcna2 promoter region and rescues Kcna2 expression in the injured DRG and attenuates neuropathic pain. Conversely, in the absence of nerve injury, mimicking this increase reduces the Kcna2 promoter activity, diminishes Kcna2 expression, decreases Kv current, increases excitability in DRG neurons and leads to spinal cord central sensitization and neuropathic pain symptoms. These findings suggest that DNMT3a may contribute to neuropathic pain by repressing Kcna2 expression in the DRG. PMID:28270689

  10. The unsilent majority-TRPV1 drives "spontaneous" transmission of unmyelinated primary afferents within cardiorespiratory NTS.

    PubMed

    Andresen, Michael C; Hofmann, Mackenzie E; Fawley, Jessica A

    2012-12-15

    Cranial primary afferent sensory neurons figure importantly in homeostatic control of visceral organ systems. Of the two broad classes of visceral afferents, the role of unmyelinated or C-type class remains poorly understood. This review contrasts key aspects of peripheral discharge properties of C-fiber afferents and their glutamate transmission mechanisms within the solitary tract nucleus (NTS). During normal prevailing conditions, most information arrives at the NTS through myelinated A-type nerves. However, most of visceral afferent axons (75-90%) in NTS are unmyelinated, C-type axons. Centrally, C-type solitary tract (ST) afferent terminals have presynaptic transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 (TRPV1) receptors. Capsaicin activation of TRPV1 blocks phasic or synchronous release of glutamate but facilitates release of glutamate from a separate pool of vesicles. This TRPV1-operated pool of vesicles is active at normal temperatures and is responsible for actively driving a 10-fold higher release of glutamate at TRPV1 compared with TRPV1- terminals even in the absence of afferent action potentials. This novel TRPV1 mechanism is responsible for an additional asynchronous release of glutamate that is not present in myelinated terminals. The NTS is rich with presynaptic G protein-coupled receptors, and the implications of TRPV1-operated glutamate offer unique targets for signaling in C-type sensory afferent terminals from neuropeptides, inflammatory mediators, lipid metabolites, cytokines, and cannabinoids. From a homeostatic view, this combination could have broad implications for integration in chronic pathological disturbances in which the numeric dominance of C-type endings and TRPV1 would broadly disturb multisystem control mechanisms.

  11. Predicting the response of olfactory sensory neurons to odor mixtures from single odor response

    PubMed Central

    Marasco, Addolorata; De Paris, Alessandro; Migliore, Michele

    2016-01-01

    The response of olfactory receptor neurons to odor mixtures is not well understood. Here, using experimental constraints, we investigate the mathematical structure of the odor response space and its consequences. The analysis suggests that the odor response space is 3-dimensional, and predicts that the dose-response curve of an odor receptor can be obtained, in most cases, from three primary components with specific properties. This opens the way to an objective procedure to obtain specific olfactory receptor responses by manipulating mixtures in a mathematically predictable manner. This result is general and applies, independently of the number of odor components, to any olfactory sensory neuron type with a response curve that can be represented as a sigmoidal function of the odor concentration. PMID:27053070

  12. Combined LTP and LTD of modulatory inputs controls neuronal processing of primary sensory inputs.

    PubMed

    Doiron, Brent; Zhao, Yanjun; Tzounopoulos, Thanos

    2011-07-20

    A hallmark of brain organization is the integration of primary and modulatory pathways by principal neurons. However, the pathway interactions that shape primary input processing remain unknown. We investigated this problem in mouse dorsal cochlear nucleus (DCN) where principal cells integrate primary, auditory nerve input with modulatory, parallel fiber input. Using a combined experimental and computational approach, we show that combined LTP and LTD of parallel fiber inputs to DCN principal cells and interneurons, respectively, broaden the time window within which synaptic inputs summate. Enhanced summation depolarizes the resting membrane potential and thus lowers the response threshold to auditory nerve inputs. Combined LTP and LTD, by preserving the variance of membrane potential fluctuations and the membrane time constant, fixes response gain and spike latency as threshold is lowered. Our data reveal a novel mechanism mediating adaptive and concomitant homeostatic regulation of distinct features of neuronal processing of sensory inputs.

  13. Predicting the response of olfactory sensory neurons to odor mixtures from single odor response

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marasco, Addolorata; de Paris, Alessandro; Migliore, Michele

    2016-04-01

    The response of olfactory receptor neurons to odor mixtures is not well understood. Here, using experimental constraints, we investigate the mathematical structure of the odor response space and its consequences. The analysis suggests that the odor response space is 3-dimensional, and predicts that the dose-response curve of an odor receptor can be obtained, in most cases, from three primary components with specific properties. This opens the way to an objective procedure to obtain specific olfactory receptor responses by manipulating mixtures in a mathematically predictable manner. This result is general and applies, independently of the number of odor components, to any olfactory sensory neuron type with a response curve that can be represented as a sigmoidal function of the odor concentration.

  14. Aging in Sensory and Motor Neurons Results in Learning Failure in Aplysia californica.

    PubMed

    Kempsell, Andrew T; Fieber, Lynne A

    2015-01-01

    The physiological and molecular mechanisms of age-related memory loss are complicated by the complexity of vertebrate nervous systems. This study takes advantage of a simple neural model to investigate nervous system aging, focusing on changes in learning and memory in the form of behavioral sensitization in vivo and synaptic facilitation in vitro. The effect of aging on the tail withdrawal reflex (TWR) was studied in Aplysia californica at maturity and late in the annual lifecycle. We found that short-term sensitization in TWR was absent in aged Aplysia. This implied that the neuronal machinery governing nonassociative learning was compromised during aging. Synaptic plasticity in the form of short-term facilitation between tail sensory and motor neurons decreased during aging whether the sensitizing stimulus was tail shock or the heterosynaptic modulator serotonin (5-HT). Together, these results suggest that the cellular mechanisms governing behavioral sensitization are compromised during aging, thereby nearly eliminating sensitization in aged Aplysia.

  15. Neonatal sensory nerve injury-induced synaptic plasticity in the trigeminal principal sensory nucleus.

    PubMed

    Lo, Fu-Sun; Erzurumlu, Reha S

    2016-01-01

    Sensory deprivation studies in neonatal mammals, such as monocular eye closure, whisker trimming, and chemical blockade of the olfactory epithelium have revealed the importance of sensory inputs in brain wiring during distinct critical periods. But very few studies have paid attention to the effects of neonatal peripheral sensory nerve damage on synaptic wiring of the central nervous system (CNS) circuits. Peripheral somatosensory nerves differ from other special sensory afferents in that they are more prone to crush or severance because of their locations in the body. Unlike the visual and auditory afferents, these nerves show regenerative capabilities after damage. Uniquely, damage to a somatosensory peripheral nerve does not only block activity incoming from the sensory receptors but also mediates injury-induced neuro- and glial chemical signals to the brain through the uninjured central axons of the primary sensory neurons. These chemical signals can have both far more and longer lasting effects than sensory blockade alone. Here we review studies which focus on the consequences of neonatal peripheral sensory nerve damage in the principal sensory nucleus of the brainstem trigeminal complex.

  16. Loss of sensory input increases the intrinsic excitability of layer 5 pyramidal neurons in rat barrel cortex.

    PubMed

    Breton, Jean-Didier; Stuart, Greg J

    2009-11-01

    Development of the cortical map is experience dependent, with different critical periods in different cortical layers. Previous work in rodent barrel cortex indicates that sensory deprivation leads to changes in synaptic transmission and plasticity in layer 2/3 and 4. Here, we studied the impact of sensory deprivation on the intrinsic properties of layer 5 pyramidal neurons located in rat barrel cortex using simultaneous somatic and dendritic recording. Sensory deprivation was achieved by clipping all the whiskers on one side of the snout. Loss of sensory input did not change somatic active and resting membrane properties, and did not influence dendritic action potential (AP) backpropagation. In contrast, sensory deprivation led to an increase in the percentage of layer 5 pyramidal neurons showing burst firing. This was associated with a reduction in the threshold for generation of dendritic calcium spikes during high-frequency AP trains. Cell-attached recordings were used to assess changes in the properties and expression of dendritic HCN channels. These experiments indicated that sensory deprivation caused a decrease in HCN channel density in distal regions of the apical dendrite. To assess the contribution of HCN down-regulation on the observed increase in dendritic excitability following sensory deprivation, we investigated the impact of blocking HCN channels. Block of HCN channels removed differences in dendritic calcium electrogenesis between control and deprived neurons. In conclusion, these observations indicate that sensory loss leads to increased dendritic excitability of cortical layer 5 pyramidal neurons. Furthermore, they suggest that increased dendritic calcium electrogenesis following sensory deprivation is mediated in part via down-regulation of dendritic HCN channels.

  17. Pungent agents from Szechuan peppers excite sensory neurons by inhibiting two-pore potassium channels

    PubMed Central

    Bautista, Diana M; Sigal, Yaron M; Milstein, Aaron D; Garrison, Jennifer L; Zorn, Julie A; Tsuruda, Pamela R; Nicoll, Roger A; Julius, David

    2011-01-01

    In traditional folk medicine, Xanthoxylum plants are referred to as ‘toothache trees’ because their anesthetic or counter-irritant properties render them useful in the treatment of pain. Psychophysical studies have identified hydroxy-α-sanshool as the compound most responsible for the unique tingling and buzzing sensations produced by Szechuan peppercorns or other Xanthoxylum preparations. Although it is generally agreed that sanshool elicits its effects by activating somatosensory neurons, the underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms remain a matter of debate. Here we show that hydroxy-α-sanshool excites two types of sensory neurons, including small-diameter unmyelinated cells that respond to capsaicin (but not mustard oil) as well as large-diameter myelinated neurons that express the neurotrophin receptor TrkC. We found that hydroxy-α-sanshool excites neurons through a unique mechanism involving inhibition of pH- and anesthetic-sensitive two-pore potassium channels (KCNK3, KCNK9 and KCNK18), providing a framework for understanding the unique and complex psychophysical sensations associated with the Szechuan pepper experience. PMID:18568022

  18. Pungent agents from Szechuan peppers excite sensory neurons by inhibiting two-pore potassium channels.

    PubMed

    Bautista, Diana M; Sigal, Yaron M; Milstein, Aaron D; Garrison, Jennifer L; Zorn, Julie A; Tsuruda, Pamela R; Nicoll, Roger A; Julius, David

    2008-07-01

    In traditional folk medicine, Xanthoxylum plants are referred to as 'toothache trees' because their anesthetic or counter-irritant properties render them useful in the treatment of pain. Psychophysical studies have identified hydroxy-alpha-sanshool as the compound most responsible for the unique tingling and buzzing sensations produced by Szechuan peppercorns or other Xanthoxylum preparations. Although it is generally agreed that sanshool elicits its effects by activating somatosensory neurons, the underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms remain a matter of debate. Here we show that hydroxy-alpha-sanshool excites two types of sensory neurons, including small-diameter unmyelinated cells that respond to capsaicin (but not mustard oil) as well as large-diameter myelinated neurons that express the neurotrophin receptor TrkC. We found that hydroxy-alpha-sanshool excites neurons through a unique mechanism involving inhibition of pH- and anesthetic-sensitive two-pore potassium channels (KCNK3, KCNK9 and KCNK18), providing a framework for understanding the unique and complex psychophysical sensations associated with the Szechuan pepper experience.

  19. Neuron numbers in sensory cortices of five delphinids compared to a physeterid, the pygmy sperm whale.

    PubMed

    Poth, C; Fung, C; Güntürkün, O; Ridgway, S H; Oelschläger, H H A

    2005-09-15

    With its large mass and enormous gyrification, the neocortex of whales and dolphins has always been a challenge to neurobiologists. Here we analyse the relationship between neuron number per cortical unit in three different sensory areas and brain mass in six different toothed whale species, five delphinids and one physeterid. Cortex samples, including primary cortical areas of the auditory, visual, and somatosensory systems were taken from both hemispheres of brains fixed in 10% buffered formalin. The samples were embedded in paraffin, sectioned at 25 microm thickness and stained with cresyl violet. Because cortical thickness varies among toothed whale species, cell counts were done in cortical units measuring 150mum in width, 25 microm in thickness, and extending from the pial surface to the white matter. By arranging the delphinid brains according to their total mass, 834-6052 g, we found decreasing neuron numbers in the investigated areas with increasing brain mass. The pigmy sperm whale (Kogia breviceps), a physeterid with an adult brain weight of 1000 g had a distinctly lower neuron number per cortical unit. As had been expected, an increase in adult brain weight in delphinid cetaceans (family Delphinidae) is not correlated with an increase in neuron number per cortical unit.

  20. Resolvin E1 Inhibits Substance P-Induced Potentiation of TRPV1 in Primary Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Jo, Youn Yi; Lee, Ji Yeon

    2016-01-01

    The neuropeptide substance P (SP) is expressed in primary sensory neurons and is commonly regarded as a “pain” neurotransmitter. Upon peripheral inflammation, SP activates the neurokinin-1 (NK-1) receptor and potentiates activity of transient receptor potential vanilloid subtype 1 (TRPV1), which is coexpressed by nociceptive neurons. Therefore, SP functions as an important neurotransmitter involved in the hypersensitization of inflammatory pain. Resolvin E1 (RvE1), derived from omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, inhibits TRPV1 activity via activation of the chemerin 23 receptor (ChemR23)—an RvE1 receptor located in dorsal root ganglion neurons—and therefore exerts an inhibitory effect on inflammatory pain. We demonstrate here that RvE1 regulates the SP-induced potentiation of TRPV1 via G-protein coupled receptor (GPCR) on peripheral nociceptive neurons. SP-induced potentiation of TRPV1 inhibited by RvE1 was blocked by the Gαi-coupled GPCR inhibitor pertussis toxin and the G-protein inhibitor GDPβ-S. These results indicate that a low concentration of RvE1 strongly inhibits the potentiation of TRPV1, induced by the SP-mediated activation of NK-1, via a GPCR signaling pathway activated by ChemR23 in nociceptive neurons. RvE1 might represent a new therapeutic target for the treatment of inflammatory pain as a prospective endogenous inhibitor that strongly inhibits TRPV1 activity associated with peripheral inflammation. PMID:27738388

  1. Calsyntenin-1 Regulates Axon Branching and Endosomal Trafficking during Sensory Neuron Development In Vivo

    PubMed Central

    Ponomareva, Olga Y.; Holmen, Ian C.; Sperry, Aiden J.; Eliceiri, Kevin W.

    2014-01-01

    Precise regulation of axon branching is crucial for neuronal circuit formation, yet the mechanisms that control branch formation are not well understood. Moreover, the highly complex morphology of neurons makes them critically dependent on protein/membrane trafficking and transport systems, although the functions for membrane trafficking in neuronal morphogenesis are largely undefined. Here we identify a kinesin adaptor, Calsyntenin-1 (Clstn-1), as an essential regulator of axon branching and neuronal compartmentalization in vivo. We use morpholino knockdown and a Clstn-1 mutant to show that Clstn-1 is required for formation of peripheral but not central sensory axons, and for peripheral axon branching in zebrafish. We used live imaging of endosomal trafficking in vivo to show that Clstn-1 regulates transport of Rab5-containing endosomes from the cell body to specific locations of developing axons. Our results suggest a model in which Clstn-1 patterns separate axonal compartments and define their ability to branch by directing trafficking of specific endosomes. PMID:25009257

  2. Prodynorphine opioid peptides and aspartate aminotransferase studied in spinal cord and sensory neurons

    SciTech Connect

    Sweetnam, P.M.

    1985-01-01

    An objective of this research was to obtain evidence for the synthesis and release of newly discovered opioid peptides, such as dynorphin, in spinal cord and sensory neurons. Several specific antisera were used to visualize dynorphin and related peptides in spinal cord and dorsal root ganglion neurons in dissociated cell culture. Antisera specific for the midportion of the dynorphin molecule revealed a subpopulation of spinal cord neurons with dense immunoreactive dynorphin in cell perikarya, but none in their associated neurites. Antisera specific for either the amino or carboxy terminal sequences of the molecule produced intense immunoreactivity in both cell perikarya and neurites of spinal neurons. These data suggest the cleavage products of dynorphin and not the complete molecule are possible neurotransmitters in the spinal cord. Additional evidence in support of this hypothesis was derived from radioimmunoassays of these cells and their culture medium following depolarization induced by elevated extracellular potassium. Antisera against aspartate aminotransferase revealed no differentially elevated immunoreactive aspartate aminotransferase in tissue sections of spinal cord or dorsal root ganglia.

  3. The microRNA bantam functions in epithelial cells to regulate scaling growth of dendrite arbors in drosophila sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Parrish, Jay Z; Xu, Peizhang; Kim, Charles C; Jan, Lily Yeh; Jan, Yuh Nung

    2009-09-24

    In addition to establishing dendritic coverage of the receptive field, neurons need to adjust their dendritic arbors to match changes of the receptive field. Here, we show that dendrite arborization (da) sensory neurons establish dendritic coverage of the body wall early in Drosophila larval development and then grow in precise proportion to their substrate, the underlying body wall epithelium, as the larva more than triples in length. This phenomenon, referred to as scaling growth of dendrites, requires the function of the microRNA (miRNA) bantam (ban) in the epithelial cells rather than the da neurons themselves. We further show that ban in epithelial cells dampens Akt kinase activity in adjacent neurons to influence dendrite growth. This signaling between epithelial cells and neurons receiving sensory input from the body wall synchronizes their growth to ensure proper dendritic coverage of the receptive field.

  4. Skin impulse excitation of spinal sensory neurons in developing Xenopus laevis (Daudin) tadpoles.

    PubMed

    James, Lisa J; Soffe, Stephen R

    2011-10-15

    Responses to gentle touch in young Xenopus tadpoles are mediated by spinal cord sensory Rohon-Beard neurons. Tadpoles also respond to noxious stimuli that elicit 'skin impulses', which propagate between epithelial cells over the whole body surface, somehow entering the CNS to generate a response. After hatching (~48 h post-fertilization), skin impulse signals enter the CNS only via cranial nerves, but previous evidence suggested the possibility of direct entry to the spinal cord before this (~24 h). We have used behavioural and electrophysiological methods to explore the developmental pattern of skin impulse entry into the spinal cord and the involvement of Rohon-Beard neurons. Lesioning confirmed that skin impulse signals can directly enter the spinal cord in young embryos, but access decreases over ~12 h and disappears soon after hatching. Electrical recordings from central Rohon-Beard axons in young embryos showed firing in response to skin impulses. However, unit recordings from Rohon-Beard somata showed that individuals that responded to touch within a characteristic, localised receptive field did not fire to skin impulses, whereas others from similar locations responded reliably. Developmental loss of skin impulse access to the spinal cord mirrored the known spread of sensitivity to gentle touch as the peripheral mechanosensory endings of Rohon-Beard neurons mature. Together, these results suggest that Rohon-Beard neurons respond to skin impulses only while immature, providing a transitory route for skin impulses to excite the CNS. In this way, Rohon-Beard neurons would mediate responses first to noxious and then to localised, gentle touch stimuli as the neurons developed.

  5. Do sensory neurons mediate adaptive cytoprotection of gastric mucosa against bile acid injury?

    PubMed

    Mercer, D W; Ritchie, W P; Dempsey, D T

    1992-01-01

    Pretreatment with the mild irritant 1 mmol acidified taurocholate protects the gastric mucosa from the injury induced by the subsequent application of 5 mmol acidified taurocholate, a phenomenon referred to as "adaptive cytoprotection." How this occurs remains an enigma. The purpose of this study was to investigate the role of sensory neurons and mucus secretion in this phenomenon. Prior to injury with 5 mmol acidified taurocholate (pH 1.2), the stomachs of six groups of rats were subjected to the following protocol. Two groups were topically pretreated with either saline or the mild irritant 1 mmol acidified taurocholate. Two other groups received the topical anesthetic 1% lidocaine prior to pretreatment with either saline or 1 mmol acidified taurocholate. The last two groups got the mucolytic agent 10% N-acetylcysteine (NAC) after pretreatment with either saline or 1 mmol acidified taurocholate. Injury was assessed by measuring net transmucosal ion fluxes, luminal appearance of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA), and gross and histologic injury. Pretreatment with the mild irritant 1 mmol acidified taurocholate significantly decreased bile acid-induced luminal ion fluxes and DNA accumulation, suggesting mucosal protection (corroborated by gross and histologic injury analysis). This effect was negated by lidocaine but not by NAC. Thus, it appears that sensory neurons, and not increased mucus secretion, play a critical role in adaptive cytoprotection.

  6. Cannabinoid WIN 55,212-2 regulates TRPV1 phosphorylation in sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Jeske, Nathaniel A; Patwardhan, Amol M; Gamper, Nikita; Price, Theodore J; Akopian, Armen N; Hargreaves, Kenneth M

    2006-10-27

    Cannabinoids are known to have multiple sites of action in the nociceptive system, leading to reduced pain sensation. However, the peripheral mechanism(s) by which this phenomenon occurs remains an issue that has yet to be resolved. Because phosphorylation of TRPV1 (transient receptor potential subtype V1) plays a key role in the induction of thermal hyperalgesia in inflammatory pain models, we evaluated whether the cannabinoid agonist WIN 55,212-2 (WIN) regulates the phosphorylation state of TRPV1. Here, we show that treatment of primary rat trigeminal ganglion cultures with WIN led to dephosphorylation of TRPV1, specifically at threonine residues. Utilizing Chinese hamster ovary cell lines, we demonstrate that Thr(144) and Thr(370) were dephosphorylated, leading to desensitization of the TRPV1 receptor. This post-translational modification occurred through activation of the phosphatase calcineurin (protein phosphatase 2B) following WIN treatment. Furthermore, knockdown of TRPA1 (transient receptor potential subtype A1) expression in sensory neurons by specific small interfering RNA abolished the WIN effect on TRPV1 dephosphorylation, suggesting that WIN acts through TRPA1. We also confirm the importance of TRPA1 in WIN-induced dephosphorylation of TRPV1 in Chinese hamster ovary cells through targeted expression of one or both receptor channels. These results imply that the cannabinoid WIN modulates the sensitivity of sensory neurons to TRPV1 activation by altering receptor phosphorylation. In addition, our data could serve as a useful strategy in determining the potential use of certain cannabinoids as peripheral analgesics.

  7. Inflammatory pain hypersensitivity mediated by phenotypic switch in myelinated primary sensory neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neumann, Simona; Doubell, Tim P.; Leslie, Tabi; Woolf, Clifford J.

    1996-11-01

    PAIN is normally evoked only by stimuli that are sufficiently intense to activate high-threshold Aδ and C sensory fibres, which relay the signal to the spinal cord. Peripheral inflammation leads to profoundly increased pain sensitivity: noxious stimuli generate a greater response and stimuli that are normally innocuous elicit pain. Inflammation increases the sensitivity of the peripheral terminals of Aδ and C fibres at the site of inflammation1. It also increases the excitability of spinal cord neurons2,3, which now amplify all sensory inputs including the normally innocuous tactile stimuli that are conveyed by low-threshold Aβ fibres. This central sensitization has been attributed to the enhanced activity of C fibres4, which increase the excitability of their postsynaptic targets by releasing glutamate and the neuropeptide substance P5-7. Here we show that inflammation results in Aβ fibres also acquiring the capacity to increase the excitability of spinal cord neurons. This is due to a phenotypic switch in a subpopulation of these fibres so that they, like C-fibres, now express substance P. Aβ fibres thus appear to contribute to inflammatory hypersensitivity by switching their phenotype to one resembling pain fibres, thereby enhancing synaptic transmission in the spinal cord and exaggerating the central response to innocuous stimuli.

  8. Dystonin/Bpag1 is a necessary endoplasmic reticulum/nuclear envelope protein in sensory neurons

    SciTech Connect

    Young, Kevin G.; Kothary, Rashmi

    2008-09-10

    Dystonin/Bpag1 proteins are cytoskeletal linkers whose loss of function in mice results in a hereditary sensory neuropathy with a progressive loss of limb coordination starting in the second week of life. These mice, named dystonia musculorum (dt), succumb to the disease and die of unknown causes prior to sexual maturity. Previous evidence indicated that cytoskeletal defects in the axon are a primary cause of dt neurodegeneration. However, more recent data suggests that other factors may be equally important contributors to the disease process. In the present study, we demonstrate perikaryal defects in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons at stages preceding the onset of loss of limb coordination in dt mice. Abnormalities include alterations in endoplasmic reticulum (ER) chaperone protein expression, indicative of an ER stress response. Dystonin in sensory neurons localized in association with the ER and nuclear envelope (NE). A fusion protein ofthe dystonin-a2 isoform, which harbors an N-terminal transmembrane domain, associated with and reorganized the ER in cell culture. This isoform also interacts with the NE protein nesprin-3{alpha}, but not nesprin-3{beta}. Defects in dt mice, as demonstrated here, may ultimately result in pathogenesis involving ER dysfunction and contribute significantly to the dt phenotype.

  9. Cortical Presynaptic Control of Dorsal Horn C–Afferents in the Rat

    PubMed Central

    Martínez-Lorenzana, Guadalupe; Condés-Lara, Miguel; Rojas-Piloni, Gerardo

    2013-01-01

    Lamina 5 sensorimotor cortex pyramidal neurons project to the spinal cord, participating in the modulation of several modalities of information transmission. A well-studied mechanism by which the corticospinal projection modulates sensory information is primary afferent depolarization, which has been characterized in fast muscular and cutaneous, but not in slow-conducting nociceptive skin afferents. Here we investigated whether the inhibition of nociceptive sensory information, produced by activation of the sensorimotor cortex, involves a direct presynaptic modulation of C primary afferents. In anaesthetized male Wistar rats, we analyzed the effects of sensorimotor cortex activation on post tetanic potentiation (PTP) and the paired pulse ratio (PPR) of dorsal horn field potentials evoked by C–fiber stimulation in the sural (SU) and sciatic (SC) nerves. We also explored the time course of the excitability changes in nociceptive afferents produced by cortical stimulation. We observed that the development of PTP was completely blocked when C-fiber tetanic stimulation was paired with cortex stimulation. In addition, sensorimotor cortex activation by topical administration of bicuculline (BIC) produced a reduction in the amplitude of C–fiber responses, as well as an increase in the PPR. Furthermore, increases in the intraspinal excitability of slow-conducting fiber terminals, produced by sensorimotor cortex stimulation, were indicative of primary afferent depolarization. Topical administration of BIC in the spinal cord blocked the inhibition of C–fiber neuronal responses produced by cortical stimulation. Dorsal horn neurons responding to sensorimotor cortex stimulation also exhibited a peripheral receptive field and responded to stimulation of fast cutaneous myelinated fibers. Our results suggest that corticospinal inhibition of nociceptive responses is due in part to a modulation of the excitability of primary C–fibers by means of GABAergic inhibitory

  10. Ablation of sensory neurons in a genetic model of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma slows initiation and progression of cancer

    PubMed Central

    Saloman, Jami L.; Albers, Kathryn M.; Li, Dongjun; Hartman, Douglas J.; Crawford, Howard C.; Muha, Emily A.; Rhim, Andrew D.; Davis, Brian M.

    2016-01-01

    Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is characterized by an exuberant inflammatory desmoplastic response. The PDAC microenvironment is complex, containing both pro- and antitumorigenic elements, and remains to be fully characterized. Here, we show that sensory neurons, an under-studied cohort of the pancreas tumor stroma, play a significant role in the initiation and progression of the early stages of PDAC. Using a well-established autochthonous model of PDAC (PKC), we show that inflammation and neuronal damage in the peripheral and central nervous system (CNS) occurs as early as the pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasia (PanIN) 2 stage. Also at the PanIN2 stage, pancreas acinar-derived cells frequently invade along sensory neurons into the spinal cord and migrate caudally to the lower thoracic and upper lumbar regions. Sensory neuron ablation by neonatal capsaicin injection prevented perineural invasion (PNI), astrocyte activation, and neuronal damage, suggesting that sensory neurons convey inflammatory signals from Kras-induced pancreatic neoplasia to the CNS. Neuron ablation in PKC mice also significantly delayed PanIN formation and ultimately prolonged survival compared with vehicle-treated controls (median survival, 7.8 vs. 4.5 mo; P = 0.001). These data establish a reciprocal signaling loop between the pancreas and nervous system, including the CNS, that supports inflammation associated with oncogenic Kras-induced neoplasia. Thus, pancreatic sensory neurons comprise an important stromal cell population that supports the initiation and progression of PDAC and may represent a potential target for prevention in high-risk populations. PMID:26929329

  11. Single-cell RNA-seq reveals distinct injury responses in different types of DRG sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Hu, Ganlu; Huang, Kevin; Hu, Youjin; Du, Guizhen; Xue, Zhigang; Zhu, Xianmin; Fan, Guoping

    2016-01-01

    Peripheral nerve injury leads to various injury-induced responses in sensory neurons including physiological pain, neuronal cell death, and nerve regeneration. In this study, we performed single-cell RNA-sequencing (scRNA-seq) analysis of mouse nonpeptidergic nociceptors (NP), peptidergic nociceptors (PEP), and large myelinated sensory neurons (LM) under both control and injury conditions at 3 days after sciatic nerve transection (SNT). After performing principle component and weighted gene co-expression network analysis, we categorized dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons into different subtypes and discovered co-regulated injury-response genes including novel regeneration associated genes (RAGs) in association with neuronal development, protein translation and cytoplasm transportation. In addition, we found significant up-regulation of the genes associated with cell death such as Pdcd2 in a subset of NP neurons after axotomy, implicating their actions in neuronal cell death upon nerve injury. Our study revealed the distinctive and sustained heterogeneity of transcriptomic responses to injury at single neuron level, implicating the involvement of different gene regulatory networks in nerve regeneration, neuronal cell death and neuropathy in different population of DRG neurons. PMID:27558660

  12. Persistent Neuronal Activity in Anterior Cingulate Cortex Correlates with Sustained Attention in Rats Regardless of Sensory Modality

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Dingcheng; Deng, Hanfei; Xiao, Xiong; Zuo, Yanfang; Sun, Jingjing; Wang, Zuoren

    2017-01-01

    The anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) has long been thought to regulate conflict between an object of attention and distractors during goal-directed sustained attention. However, it is unclear whether ACC serves to sustained attention itself. Here, we developed a task in which the time course of sustained attention could be controlled in rats. Then, using pharmacological lesion experiments, we employed it to assess function of ACC in sustained attention. We then recorded neuronal activity in ACC using multichannel extracellular recording techniques and identified specific ACC neurons persistently activated during the period of attention. Further experiments showed that target modality had minimal influence on the neuronal activity, and distracting external sensory input during the attention period did not perturb persistent neuronal activity. Additionally, minimal trial-to-trial variability in neuronal activity observed during sustained attention supports a role for ACC neurons in that behavior. Therefore, we conclude that the ACC neuronal activity correlates with sustained attention. PMID:28230158

  13. Monosynaptic convergence of chorda tympani and glossopharyngeal afferents onto ascending relay neurons in the nucleus of the solitary tract: A high-resolution confocal and correlative electron microscopy approach

    PubMed Central

    Corson, James A.; Erisir, Alev

    2014-01-01

    While physiological studies suggested convergence of chorda tympani and glossopharyngeal afferent axons onto single neurons of the rostral nucleus of the solitary tract (rNTS), anatomical evidence has been elusive. The current study uses high-magnification confocal microscopy to identify putative synaptic contacts from afferent fibers of the two nerves onto individual projection neurons. Imaged tissue is re-visualized with electron microscopy, confirming that overlapping fluorescent signals in confocal z-stacks accurately identify appositions between labeled terminal and dendrite pairs. Monte Carlo modeling reveals that the probability of overlapping fluorophores is stochastically unrelated to the density of afferent label suggesting that convergent innervation in the rNTS is selective rather than opportunistic. Putative synaptic contacts from each nerve are often compartmentalized onto dendrite segments of convergently innervated neurons. These results have important implications for orosensory processing in the rNTS, and the techniques presented here have applications in investigations of neural microcircuitry with an emphasis on innervation patterning. PMID:23640852

  14. Reactive nucleolar and Cajal body responses to proteasome inhibition in sensory ganglion neurons.

    PubMed

    Palanca, Ana; Casafont, Iñigo; Berciano, María T; Lafarga, Miguel

    2014-06-01

    The dysfunction of the ubiquitin proteasome system has been related to a broad array of neurodegenerative disorders in which the accumulation of misfolded protein aggregates causes proteotoxicity. The ability of proteasome inhibitors to induce cell cycle arrest and apoptosis has emerged as a powerful strategy for cancer therapy. Bortezomib is a proteasome inhibitor used as an antineoplastic drug, although its neurotoxicity frequently causes a severe sensory peripheral neuropathy. In this study we used a rat model of bortezomib treatment to study the nucleolar and Cajal body responses to the proteasome inhibition in sensory ganglion neurons that are major targets of bortezomib-induced neurotoxicity. Treatment with bortezomib induced dose-dependent dissociation of protein synthesis machinery (chromatolysis) and nuclear retention of poly(A) RNA granules resulting in neuronal dysfunction. However, as a compensatory response to the proteotoxic stress, both nucleoli and Cajal bodies exhibited reactive changes. These include an increase in the number and size of nucleoli, strong nucleolar incorporation of the RNA precursor 5'-fluorouridine, and increased expression of both 45S rRNA and genes encoding nucleolar proteins UBF, fibrillarin and B23. Taken together, these findings appear to reflect the activation of the nucleolar transcription in response to proteotoxic stress Furthermore, the number of Cajal bodies, a parameter related to transcriptional activity, increases upon proteasome inhibition. We propose that nucleoli and Cajal bodies are important targets in the signaling pathways that are activated by the proteotoxic stress response to proteasome inhibition. The coordinating activity of these two organelles in the production of snRNA, snoRNA and rRNA may contribute to neuronal survival after proteasome inhibition. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Role of the Nucleolus in Human Disease.

  15. Modulation of action potential and calcium signaling by levetiracetam in rat sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Ozcan, Mete; Ayar, Ahmet

    2012-06-01

    Levetiracetam (LEV), a new anticonvulsant agent primarily used to treat epilepsy, has been used in pain treatment but the cellular mechanism of this action remains unclear. This study aimed to investigate effects of LEV on the excitability and membrane depolarization-induced calcium signaling in isolated rat sensory neurons using the whole-cell patch clamp and fura 2-based ratiometric Ca(2+)-imaging techniques. Dorsal root ganglia (DRG) were excised from neonatal rats, and cultured following enzymatic and mechanical dissociation. Under current clamp conditions, acute application of LEV (30 µM, 100 µM and 300 µM) significantly increased input resistance and caused the membrane to hyperpolarize from resting membrane potential in a dose-dependent manner. Reversal potentials of action potential (AP) after hyperpolarising amplitudes were shifted to more negative, toward to potassium equilibrium potentials, after application of LEV. It also caused a decrease in number of APs in neurons fired multiple APs in response to prolonged depolarization. Fura-2 fluorescence Ca(2+) imaging protocols revealed that HiK(+) (30 mM)-induced intracellular free Ca(2+) ([Ca(2+)](i)) was inhibited to 97.8 ± 4.6% (n = 17), 92.6 ± 4.8% (n = 17, p < 0.01) and 89.1 ± 5.1% (n = 18, p < 0.01) after application of 30 µM, 100 µM and 300 µM LEV (respectively), without any significant effect on basal levels of [Ca(2+)](i). This is the first evidence for the effect of LEV on the excitability of rat sensory neurons through an effect which might involve activation of potassium channels and inhibition of entry of Ca(2+), providing new insights for cellular mechanism(s) of LEV in pain treatment modalities.

  16. Serotonin receptor antagonists discriminate between PKA- and PKC-mediated plasticity in aplysia sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Dumitriu, Bogdan; Cohen, Jonathan E; Wan, Qin; Negroiu, Andreea M; Abrams, Thomas W

    2006-04-01

    Highly selective serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine, 5-HT) receptor antagonists developed for mammals are ineffective in Aplysia due to the evolutionary divergence of neurotransmitter receptors and because the higher ionic strength of physiological saline for marine invertebrates reduces antagonist affinity. It has therefore been difficult to identify antagonists that specifically block individual signaling cascades initiated by 5-HT. We studied two broad-spectrum 5-HT receptor antagonists that have been characterized biochemically in Aplysia CNS: methiothepin and spiperone. Methiothepin is highly effective in inhibiting adenylyl cyclase (AC)-coupled 5-HT receptors in Aplysia. Spiperone, which blocks phospholipase C (PLC)-coupled 5-HT receptors in mammals, does not block AC-coupled 5-HT receptors in Aplysia. In electrophysiological studies, we explored whether methiothepin and spiperone can be used in parallel to distinguish between the AC-cAMP and PLC-protein kinase C (PKC) modulatory cascades that are initiated by 5-HT. 5-HT-induced broadening of the sensory neuron action potential in the presence of tetraethylammonium/nifedipine, which is mediated by modulation of the S-K+ currents, was used an assay for the AC-cAMP cascade. Spike broadening initiated by 5 microM 5-HT was unaffected by 100 microM spiperone, whereas it was effectively blocked by 100 microM methiothepin. Facilitation of highly depressed sensory neuron-to-motor neuron synapses by 5-HT was used as an assay for the PLC-PKC cascade. Spiperone completely blocked facilitation of highly depressed synapses by 5 microM 5-HT. In contrast, methiothepin produced a modest, nonsignificant, reduction in the facilitation of depressed synapses. Interestingly, these experiments revealed that the PLC-PKC cascade undergoes desensitization during exposure to 5-HT.

  17. Inhibitory responses in Aplysia pleural sensory neurons act to block excitability, transmitter release, and PKC Apl II activation.

    PubMed

    Dunn, Tyler W; Farah, Carole A; Sossin, Wayne S

    2012-01-01

    Expression of the 5-HT(1Apl(a)) receptor in Aplysia pleural sensory neurons inhibited 5-HT-mediated translocation of the novel PKC Apl II in sensory neurons and prevented PKC-dependent synaptic facilitation at sensory to motoneuron synapses (Nagakura et al. 2010). We now demonstrate that the ability of inhibitory receptors to block PKC activation is a general feature of inhibitory receptors and is found after expression of the 5-HT(1Apl(b)) receptor and with activation of endogenous dopamine and FMRFamide receptors in sensory neurons. Pleural sensory neurons are heterogeneous for their inhibitory response to endogenous transmitters, with dopamine being the most prevalent, followed by FMRFamide, and only a small number of neurons with inhibitory responses to 5-HT. The inhibitory response is dominant, reduces membrane excitability and synaptic efficacy, and can reverse 5-HT facilitation at both naive and depressed synapses. Indeed, dopamine can reverse PKC translocation during the continued application of 5-HT. Reversal of translocation can also be seen after translocation mediated by an analog of diacylglycerol, suggesting inhibition is not through blockade of diacylglycerol production. The effects of inhibition on PKC translocation can be rescued by phosphatidic acid, consistent with the inhibitory response involving a reduction or block of production of this lipid. However, phosphatidic acid could not recover PKC-dependent synaptic facilitation due to an additional inhibitory effect on the non-L-type calcium flux linked to synaptic transmission. In summary, we find a novel mechanism downstream of inhibitory receptors linked to inhibition of PKC activation in Aplysia sensory neurons.

  18. Mitochondrial Ca2+ Cycling Facilitates Activation of the Transcription Factor NFAT in Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Man-Su; Usachev, Yuriy M.

    2009-01-01

    Ca2+-dependent gene regulation controls many aspects of neuronal plasticity. Significant progress has been made toward understanding the roles of voltage- and ligand-gated Ca2+ channels in triggering specific transcriptional responses. In contrast, the functional importance of Ca2+ buffers and Ca2+ transporters in neuronal gene regulation is less clear despite their critical contribution to the spatio-temporal control of Ca2+ signals. Here we examined the role of mitochondrial Ca2+ uptake and release in regulating the Ca2+-dependent transcription factor NFAT that has been implicated in synaptic plasticity, axonal growth and neuronal survival. Intense stimulation of sensory neurons by action potentials or TRPV1 agonists induced rapid activation and nuclear import of NFAT. Nuclear translocation of NFAT was associated with a characteristic prolonged [Ca2+]i elevation (plateau) that resulted from Ca2+ uptake by, and its subsequent release from mitochondria. Measurements using a mitochondrial Ca2+ indicator, mtPericam, showed that this process recruited mitochondria throughout the cell body, including the perinuclear region. [Ca2+]i levels attained during the plateau phase were similar to or higher than those required for NFAT activation (200–300 nM). The elimination of the [Ca2+]i plateau by blocking either mitochondrial Ca2+ uptake via the uniporter or Ca2+ release via the mitochondrial Na+/Ca2+ exchanger strongly reduced nuclear import of NFAT. Furthermore, preventing Ca2+ mobilization via the mitochondrial Na+/Ca2+ exchanger diminished NFAT-mediated transcription. Collectively, these data implicate activity-induced Ca2+ uptake and prolonged release from mitochondria as a novel regulatory mechanism in neuronal excitation-transcription coupling. PMID:19793968

  19. Sexually dimorphic control of gene expression in sensory neurons regulates decision-making behavior in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Hilbert, Zoë A; Kim, Dennis H

    2017-01-01

    Animal behavior is directed by the integration of sensory information from internal states and the environment. Neuroendocrine regulation of diverse behaviors of Caenorhabditis elegans is under the control of the DAF-7/TGF-β ligand that is secreted from sensory neurons. Here, we show that C. elegans males exhibit an altered, male-specific expression pattern of daf-7 in the ASJ sensory neuron pair with the onset of reproductive maturity, which functions to promote male-specific mate-searching behavior. Molecular genetic analysis of the switch-like regulation of daf-7 expression in the ASJ neuron pair reveals a hierarchy of regulation among multiple inputs—sex, age, nutritional status, and microbial environment—which function in the modulation of behavior. Our results suggest that regulation of gene expression in sensory neurons can function in the integration of a wide array of sensory information and facilitate decision-making behaviors in C. elegans. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.21166.001 PMID:28117661

  20. Statins decrease expression of the proinflammatory neuropeptides calcitonin gene-related peptide and substance P in sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Bucelli, Robert C; Gonsiorek, Eugene A; Kim, Woo-Yang; Bruun, Donald; Rabin, Richard A; Higgins, Dennis; Lein, Pamela J

    2008-03-01

    Clinical and experimental observations suggest that statins may be useful for treating diseases presenting with predominant neurogenic inflammation, but the mechanism(s) mediating this potential therapeutic effect are poorly understood. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that statins act directly on sensory neurons to decrease expression of proinflammatory neuropeptides that trigger neurogenic inflammation, specifically calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) and substance P. Reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction, radioimmunoassay, and immunocytochemistry were used to quantify CGRP and substance P expression in dorsal root ganglia (DRG) harvested from adult male rats and in primary cultures of sensory neurons derived from embryonic rat DRG. Systemic administration of statins at pharmacologically relevant doses significantly reduced CGRP and substance P levels in DRG in vivo. In cultured sensory neurons, statins blocked bone morphogenetic protein (BMP)-induced CGRP and substance P expression and decreased expression of these neuropeptides in sensory neurons pretreated with BMPs. These effects were concentration-dependent and occurred independent of effects on cell survival or axon growth. Statin inhibition of neuropeptide expression was reversed by supplementation with mevalonate and cholesterol, but not isoprenoid precursors. BMPs signal via Smad activation, and cholesterol depletion by statins inhibited Smad1 phosphorylation and nuclear translocation. These findings identify a novel action of statins involving down-regulation of proinflammatory neuropeptide expression in sensory ganglia via cholesterol depletion and decreased Smad1 activation and suggest that statins may be effective in attenuating neurogenic inflammation.

  1. Oxytocin is expressed by both intrinsic sensory and secretomotor neurons in the enteric nervous system of guinea pig.

    PubMed

    Yu, Qiang; Ji, Ruihua; Gao, Xiaofei; Fu, Jiqiang; Guo, Wei; Song, Xianmin; Zhao, Xiaolin; Burnstock, Geoffrey; Shi, Xueyin; He, Cheng; Xiang, Zhenghua

    2011-05-01

    Single- and double-immunostaining techniques were used systematically to study the distribution pattern and neurochemical density of oxytocin-immunoreactive (-ir) neurons in the digestive tract of the guinea pig. Oxytocin immunoreactivity was distributed widely in the guinea pig gastrointestinal tract; 3%, 13%, 17%, 15%, and 10% of ganglion neurons were immunoreactive for oxytocin in the myenteric plexuses of the gastric corpus, jejunum, ileum, proximal colon, and distal colon, respectively, and 36%, 40%, 52%, and 56% of ganglion neurons were immunoreactive for oxytocin in the submucosal plexuses of the jejunum, ileum, proximal colon, and distal colon, respectively. In the myenteric plexus, oxytocin was expressed exclusively in the intrinsic enteric afferent neurons, as identified by calbindin 28 K. In the submucosal plexuses, oxytocin was expressed in non-cholinergic secretomotor neurons, as identified by vasoactive intestinal polypeptide. Oxytocin-ir nerve fibers in the inner circular muscle layer possibly arose from the myenteric oxytocin-ir neurons, and oxytocin-ir nerve fibers in the mucosa possibly arose from both the myenteric and submucosal oxytocin-ir neurons. Thus, oxytocin in the digestive tract might be involved in gastrointestinal tract motility mainly via the regulation of the inner circular muscle and the balance of the absorption and secretion of water and electrolytes.

  2. Acid-Sensing Ion Channels Expression, Identity and Role in the Excitability of the Cochlear Afferent Neurons

    PubMed Central

    González-Garrido, Antonia; Vega, Rosario; Mercado, Francisco; López, Iván A.; Soto, Enrique

    2015-01-01

    Acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) are activated by an increase in the extracellular proton concentration. There are four genes (ASIC1-4) that encode six subunits, and they are involved in diverse neuronal functions, such as mechanosensation, learning and memory, nociception, and modulation of retinal function. In this study, we characterize the ASIC currents of spiral ganglion neurons (SGNs). These ASIC currents are primarily carried by Na+, exhibit fast activation and desensitization, display a pH50 of 6.2 and are blocked by amiloride, indicating that these are ASIC currents. The ASIC currents were further characterized using several pharmacological tools. Gadolinium and acetylsalicylic acid reduced these currents, and FMRFamide, zinc (at high concentrations) and N,N,N’,N’–tetrakis-(2-piridilmetil)-ethylenediamine increased them, indicating that functional ASICs are composed of the subunits ASIC1, ASIC2, and ASIC3. Neomycin and streptomycin reduced the desensitization rate of the ASIC current in SGNs, indicating that ASICs may contribute to the ototoxic action of aminoglycosides. RT-PCR of the spiral ganglion revealed significant expression of all ASIC subunits. By immunohistochemistry the expression of the ASIC1a, ASIC2a, ASIC2b, and ASIC3 subunits was detected in SGNs. Although only a few SGNs exhibited action potential firing in response to an acidic stimulus, protons in the extracellular solution modulated SGN activity during sinusoidal stimulation. Our results show that protons modulate the excitability of SGNs via ASICs. PMID:26733809

  3. Acid-Sensing Ion Channels Expression, Identity and Role in the Excitability of the Cochlear Afferent Neurons.

    PubMed

    González-Garrido, Antonia; Vega, Rosario; Mercado, Francisco; López, Iván A; Soto, Enrique

    2015-01-01

    Acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) are activated by an increase in the extracellular proton concentration. There are four genes (ASIC1-4) that encode six subunits, and they are involved in diverse neuronal functions, such as mechanosensation, learning and memory, nociception, and modulation of retinal function. In this study, we characterize the ASIC currents of spiral ganglion neurons (SGNs). These ASIC currents are primarily carried by Na(+), exhibit fast activation and desensitization, display a pH50 of 6.2 and are blocked by amiloride, indicating that these are ASIC currents. The ASIC currents were further characterized using several pharmacological tools. Gadolinium and acetylsalicylic acid reduced these currents, and FMRFamide, zinc (at high concentrations) and N,N,N',N'-tetrakis-(2-piridilmetil)-ethylenediamine increased them, indicating that functional ASICs are composed of the subunits ASIC1, ASIC2, and ASIC3. Neomycin and streptomycin reduced the desensitization rate of the ASIC current in SGNs, indicating that ASICs may contribute to the ototoxic action of aminoglycosides. RT-PCR of the spiral ganglion revealed significant expression of all ASIC subunits. By immunohistochemistry the expression of the ASIC1a, ASIC2a, ASIC2b, and ASIC3 subunits was detected in SGNs. Although only a few SGNs exhibited action potential firing in response to an acidic stimulus, protons in the extracellular solution modulated SGN activity during sinusoidal stimulation. Our results show that protons modulate the excitability of SGNs via ASICs.

  4. APE1, the DNA base excision repair protein, regulates the removal of platinum adducts in sensory neuronal cultures by NER

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Hyun-Suk; Guo, Chunlu; Thompson, Eric L.; Jiang, Yanlin; Kelley, Mark R.; Vasko, Michael R.; Lee, Suk-Hee

    2015-01-01

    Peripheral neuropathy is one of the major side effects of treatment with the anticancer drug, cisplatin. One proposed mechanism for this neurotoxicity is the formation of platinum adducts in sensory neurons that could contribute to DNA damage. Although this damage is largely repaired by nuclear excision repair (NER), our previous findings suggest that augmenting the base excision repair pathway (BER) by overexpressing the repair protein APE1 protects sensory neurons from cisplatin-induced neurotoxicity. The question remains whether APE1 contributes to the ability of the NER pathway to repair platinum-damage in neuronal cells. To examine this, we manipulated APE1 expression in sensory neuronal cultures and measured Pt-removal after exposure to cisplatin. When neuronal cultures were treated with increasing concentrations of cisplatin for two or three hours, there was a concentration-dependent increase in Pt-damage that peaked at four hours and returned to near baseline levels after 24 hours. In cultures where APE1 expression was reduced by ~80% using siRNA directed at APE1, there was a significant inhibition of Pt-removal over eight hours which was reversed by overexpressing APE1 using a lentiviral construct for human wtAPE1. Reduction in APE1 expression also altered the expression of the NER proteins RPA70 and XPA in sensory neuronal cultures. Overexpressing a mutant APE1 (C65 APE1), which only has DNA repair activity, but not its other significant redox-signaling function, mimicked the effects of wtAPE1. Overexpressing DNA repair activity mutant APE1 (226+177APE1), with only redox activity was ineffective suggesting it is the DNA repair function of APE1 and not its redox-signaling, that restores the Pt-damage removal. Together, these data provide the first evidence that a critical BER enzyme, APE1, helps regulate the NER pathway in the repair of cisplatin damage in sensory neurons. PMID:26164266

  5. Gastrodin inhibits the activity of acid-sensing ion channels in rat primary sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Qiu, Fang; Liu, Ting-Ting; Qu, Zu-Wei; Qiu, Chun-Yu; Yang, Zhifan; Hu, Wang-Ping

    2014-05-15

    Acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs), a family of proton-gated cation channels, are believed to mediate pain caused by extracellular acidification. Gastrodin is a main bioactive constituent of the traditional herbal Gastrodia elata Blume, which has been widely used in Oriental countries for centuries. As an analgesic, gastrodin has been used clinically to treat pain such as migraine and headache. However, the mechanisms underlying analgesic action of gastrodin are still poorly understood. Here, we have found that gastrodin inhibited the activity of native ASICs in rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons. Gastrodin dose-dependently inhibited proton-gated currents mediated by ASICs. Gastrodin shifted the proton concentration-response curve downwards, with a decrease of 36.92 ± 6.23% in the maximum current response but with no significant change in the pH0.5 value. Moreover, gastrodin altered acid-evoked membrane excitability of rat DRG neurons and caused a significant decrease in the amplitude of the depolarization and the number of action potentials induced by acid stimuli. Finally, peripheral applied gastrodin relieved pain evoked by intraplantar injection of acetic acid in rats. Our results indicate that gastrodin can inhibit the activity of ASICs in the primary sensory neurons, which provided a novel mechanism underlying analgesic action of gastrodin.

  6. Bilateral Neuropathy of Primary Sensory Neurons by the Chronic Compression of Multiple Unilateral DRGs

    PubMed Central

    Xie, Ya-Bin; Zhao, Huan; Wang, Ying; Song, Kai; Zhang, Ming; Meng, Fan-Cheng; Yang, Yu-Jie; He, Yang-Song; Kuang, Fang; You, Si-Wei; You, Hao-Jun; Xu, Hui

    2016-01-01

    To mimic multilevel nerve root compression and intervertebral foramina stenosis in human, we established a new animal model of the chronic compression of unilateral multiple lumbar DRGs (mCCD) in the rat. A higher occurrence of signs of spontaneous pain behaviors, such as wet-dog shaking and spontaneous hind paw shrinking behaviors, was firstly observed from day 1 onward. In the meantime, the unilateral mCCD rat exhibited significant bilateral hind paw mechanical and cold allodynia and hyperalgesia, as well as a thermal preference to 30°C plate between 30 and 35°C. The expression of activating transcription factor 3 (ATF3) was significantly increased in the ipsilateral and contralateral all-sized DRG neurons after the mCCD. And the expression of CGRP was significantly increased in the ipsilateral and contralateral large- and medium-sized DRG neurons. ATF3 and CGRP expressions correlated to evoked pain hypersensitivities such as mechanical and cold allodynia on postoperative day 1. The results suggested that bilateral neuropathy of primary sensory neurons might contribute to bilateral hypersensitivity in the mCCD rat. PMID:26819761

  7. Inhibition of the Aplysia sensory neuron calcium current with dopamine and serotonin.

    PubMed

    Dunn, Tyler W; Sossin, Wayne S

    2013-11-01

    The inhibition of Aplysia pleural mechanosensory neuron synapses by dopamine and serotonin through activation of endogenous dopaminergic and expressed 5-HT1Apl(a)/b receptors, respectively, involves a reduction in action potential-associated calcium influx. We show that the inhibition of synaptic efficacy is downstream of the readily releasable pool, suggesting that inhibition is at the level of calcium secretion coupling, likely a result of the changes in the calcium current. Indeed, the inhibitory responses directly reduce a CaV2-like calcium current in isolated sensory neurons. The inhibition of the calcium current is voltage independent as it is not affected by a strong depolarizing prepulse, consistent with other invertebrate CaV2 calcium currents. Similar to voltage-independent inhibition of vertebrate nociceptors, inhibition was blocked with Src tyrosine kinase inhibitors. The data suggest a conserved mechanism by which G protein-coupled receptor activation can inhibit the CaV2 calcium current in nociceptive neurons.

  8. Modulation of Specific Sensory Cortical Areas by Segregated Basal Forebrain Cholinergic Neurons Demonstrated by Neuronal Tracing and Optogenetic Stimulation in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Chaves-Coira, Irene; Barros-Zulaica, Natali; Rodrigo-Angulo, Margarita; Núñez, Ángel

    2016-01-01

    Neocortical cholinergic activity plays a fundamental role in sensory processing and cognitive functions. Previous results have suggested a refined anatomical and functional topographical organization of basal forebrain (BF) projections that may control cortical sensory processing in a specific manner. We have used retrograde anatomical procedures to demonstrate the existence of specific neuronal groups in the BF involved in the control of specific sensory cortices. Fluoro-Gold (FlGo) and Fast Blue (FB) fluorescent retrograde tracers were deposited into the primary somatosensory (S1) and primary auditory (A1) cortices in mice. Our results revealed that the BF is a heterogeneous area in which neurons projecting to different cortical areas are segregated into different neuronal groups. Most of the neurons located in the horizontal limb of the diagonal band of Broca (HDB) projected to the S1 cortex, indicating that this area is specialized in the sensory processing of tactile stimuli. However, the nucleus basalis magnocellularis (B) nucleus shows a similar number of cells projecting to the S1 as to the A1 cortices. In addition, we analyzed the cholinergic effects on the S1 and A1 cortical sensory responses by optogenetic stimulation of the BF neurons in urethane-anesthetized transgenic mice. We used transgenic mice expressing the light-activated cation channel, channelrhodopsin-2, tagged with a fluorescent protein (ChR2-YFP) under the control of the choline-acetyl transferase promoter (ChAT). Cortical evoked potentials were induced by whisker deflections or by auditory clicks. According to the anatomical results, optogenetic HDB stimulation induced more extensive facilitation of tactile evoked potentials in S1 than auditory evoked potentials in A1, while optogenetic stimulation of the B nucleus facilitated either tactile or auditory evoked potentials equally. Consequently, our results suggest that cholinergic projections to the cortex are organized into segregated

  9. H2S-induced HCO3- secretion in the rat stomach--involvement of nitric oxide, prostaglandins, and capsaicin-sensitive sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Takeuchi, Koji; Ise, Fumitaka; Takahashi, Kento; Aihara, Eitaro; Hayashi, Shusaku

    2015-04-30

    Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) is known to be an important gaseous mediator that affects various functions under physiological and pathological conditions. We examined the effects of NaHS, a H2S donor, on HCO3(-) secretion in rat stomachs and investigated the mechanism involved in this response. Under urethane anesthesia, rat stomachs were mounted on an ex vivo chamber and perfused with saline. Acid secretion had been inhibited by omeprazole. The secretion of HCO3(-) was measured at pH 7.0 using a pH-stat method and by the addition of 10 mM HCl. NaHS (0.5-10 mM) was perfused in the stomach for 5 min. Indomethacin or L-NAME was administered s.c. before NaHS treatment, while glibenclamide (a KATP channel blocker), ONO-8711 (an EP1 antagonist), or propargylglycine (a cystathionine γ-lyase inhibitor) was given i.p. before. The mucosal perfusion of NaHS dose-dependently increased the secretion of HCO3(-), and this effect was significantly attenuated by indomethacin, L-NAME, and sensory deafferentation, but not by glibenclamide or ONO-8711. The luminal output of nitric oxide, but not the mucosal production of prostaglandin E2, was increased by the perfusion of NaHS. Mucosal acidification stimulated HCO3(-) secretion, and this response was inhibited by sensory deafferentation, indomethacin, L-NAME, and ONO-8711, but not by propargylglycine. These results suggested that H2S increased HCO3(-) secretion in the stomach, and this effect was mediated by capsaicin-sensitive afferent neurons and dependent on nitric oxide and prostaglandins, but not ATP-sensitive K(+) channels. Further study is needed to define the role of endogenous H2S in the mechanism underlying acid-induced gastric HCO3(-) secretion.

  10. Characterization of sacral interneurons that mediate activation of locomotor pattern generators by sacrocaudal afferent input.

    PubMed

    Etlin, Alex; Finkel, Eran; Mor, Yoav; O'Donovan, Michael J; Anglister, Lili; Lev-Tov, Aharon

    2013-01-09

    Identification of the neural pathways involved in retraining the spinal central pattern generators (CPGs) by afferent input in the absence of descending supraspinal control is feasible in isolated rodent spinal cords where the locomotor CPGs are potently activated by sacrocaudal afferent (SCA) input. Here we study the involvement of sacral neurons projecting rostrally through the ventral funiculi (VF) in activation of the CPGs by sensory stimulation. Fluorescent labeling and immunostaining showed that VF neurons are innervated by primary afferents immunoreactive for vesicular glutamate transporters 1 and 2 and by intraspinal neurons. Calcium imaging revealed that 55% of the VF neurons were activated by SCA stimulation. The activity of VF neurons and the sacral and lumbar CPGs was abolished when non-NMDA receptors in the sacral segments were blocked by the antagonist CNQX. When sacral NMDA receptors were blocked by APV, the sacral CPGs were suppressed, VF neurons with nonrhythmic activity were recruited and a moderate-drive locomotor rhythm developed during SCA stimulation. In contrast, when the sacral CPGs were activated by SCA stimulation, rhythmic and nonrhythmic VF neurons were recruited and the locomotor rhythm was most powerful. The activity of 73 and 27% of the rhythmic VF neurons was in-phase with the ipsilateral and contralateral motor output, respectively. Collectively, our studies indicate that sacral VF neurons serve as a major link between SCA and the hindlimb CPGs and that the ability of SCA to induce stepping can be enhanced by the sacral CPGs. The nature of the ascending drive to lumbar CPGs, the identity of subpopulations of VF neurons, and their potential role in activating the locomotor rhythm are discussed.

  11. Sigma-1 Receptor Antagonism Restores Injury-Induced Decrease of Voltage-Gated Ca2+ Current in Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Pan, Bin; Guo, Yuan; Kwok, Wai-Meng; Hogan, Quinn

    2014-01-01

    Sigma-1 receptor (σ1R), an endoplasmic reticulum–chaperone protein, can modulate painful response after peripheral nerve injury. We have demonstrated that voltage-gated calcium current is inhibited in axotomized sensory neurons. We examined whether σ1R contributes to the sensory dysfunction of voltage-gated calcium channel (VGCC) after peripheral nerve injury through electrophysiological approach in dissociated rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons. Animals received either skin incision (Control) or spinal nerve ligation (SNL). Both σ1R agonists, (+)pentazocine (PTZ) and DTG [1,3-di-(2-tolyl)guanidine], dose dependently inhibited calcium current (ICa) with Ba2+ as charge carrier in control sensory neurons. The inhibitory effect of σ1R agonists on ICa was blocked by σ1R antagonist, BD1063 (1-[2-(3,4-dichlorophenyl)ethyl]-4-m​ethylpiperazine dihydrochloride) or BD1047 (N-[2-(3,4-dichlorophenyl)ethyl]-N-m​ethyl-2-(dimethylamino)ethylamine dihydrobromide). PTZ and DTG showed similar effect on ICa in axotomized fifth DRG neurons (SNL L5). Both PTZ and DTG shifted the voltage-dependent activation and steady-state inactivation of VGCC to the left and accelerated VGCC inactivation rate in both Control and axotomized L5 SNL DRG neurons. The σ1R antagonist, BD1063 (10 μM), increases ICa in SNL L5 neurons but had no effect on Control and noninjured fourth lumbar neurons in SNL rats. Together, the findings suggest that activation of σR1 decreases ICa in sensory neurons and may play a pivotal role in pain generation. PMID:24891452

  12. Effect of low frequency transcutaneous magnetic stimulation on sensory and motor transmission.

    PubMed

    Leung, Albert; Shukla, Shivshil; Lee, Jacquelyn; Metzger-Smith, Valerie; He, Yifan; Chen, Jeffrey; Golshan, Shahrokh

    2015-09-01

    Peripheral nerve injury diminishes fast conducting large myelinated afferent fibers transmission but enhances smaller pain transmitting fibers firing. This aberrant afferent neuronal behavior contributes to development of chronic post-traumatic peripheral neuropathic pain (PTP-NP). Non-invasive dynamic magnetic flux stimulation has been implicated in treating PTP-NP, a condition currently not adequately addressed by other therapies including transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS). The current study assessed the effect of low frequency transcutaneous magnetic stimulation (LFTMS) on peripheral sensory thresholds, nerve conduction properties, and TENS induced fast afferent slowing effect as measured by motor and sensory conduction studies in the ulnar nerve. Results indicated sham LFTMS with TENS (Sham + TENS) significantly (P = 0.02 and 0.007, respectively) reduces sensory conduction velocity (CV) and increases sensory onset latency (OL), and motor peak latency (PL) whereas, real LFTMS with TENS (Real + TENS) reverses effects of TENS on sensory CV and OL, and significantly (P = 0.036) increases the sensory PL. LFTMS alone significantly (P < 0.05) elevates sensory PL and onset-to-peak latency. LFTMS appears to reverse TENS slowing effect on fast conducting fibers and casts a selective peripheral modulatory effect on slow conducting pain afferent fibers.

  13. Hydrogen sulfide determines HNO-induced stimulation of trigeminal afferents.

    PubMed

    Wild, Vanessa; Messlinger, Karl; Fischer, Michael J M

    2015-08-18

    Endogenous NO and hydrogen sulfide form HNO, which causes CGRP release via TRPA1 channel activation in sensory nerves. In the present study, stimulation of intact trigeminal afferent neuron preparations with NO donors, Na2S or both was analyzed by measuring CGRP release as an index of mass activation. Combined stimulation was able to activate all parts of the trigeminal system and acted synergistic compared to stimulation with both substances alone. To investigate the contribution of both substances, we varied their ratio and tracked intracellular calcium in isolated neurons. Our results demonstrate that hydrogen sulfide is the rate-limiting factor for HNO formation. CGRP has a key role in migraine pathophysiology and HNO formation at all sites of the trigeminal system should be considered for this novel means of activation.

  14. Proteasome inhibition induces DNA damage and reorganizes nuclear architecture and protein synthesis machinery in sensory ganglion neurons.

    PubMed

    Palanca, Ana; Casafont, Iñigo; Berciano, María T; Lafarga, Miguel

    2014-05-01

    Bortezomib is a reversible proteasome inhibitor used as an anticancer drug. However, its clinical use is limited since it causes peripheral neurotoxicity. We have used Sprague-Dawley rats as an animal model to investigate the cellular mechanisms affected by both short-term and chronic bortezomib treatments in sensory ganglia neurons. Proteasome inhibition induces dose-dependent alterations in the architecture, positioning, shape and polarity of the neuronal nucleus. It also produces DNA damage without affecting neuronal survival, and severe disruption of the protein synthesis machinery at the central cytoplasm accompanied by decreased expression of the brain-derived neurotrophic factor. As a compensatory or adaptive survival response against proteotoxic stress caused by bortezomib treatment, sensory neurons preserve basal levels of transcriptional activity, up-regulate the expression of proteasome subunit genes, and generate a new cytoplasmic perinuclear domain for protein synthesis. We propose that proteasome activity is crucial for controlling nuclear architecture, DNA repair and the organization of the protein synthesis machinery in sensory neurons. These neurons are primary targets of bortezomib neurotoxicity, for which reason their dysfunction may contribute to the pathogenesis of the bortezomib-induced peripheral neuropathy in treated patients.

  15. Activin Acts with Nerve Growth Factor to Regulate Calcitonin Gene-Related Peptide mRNA in Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Pin; Hall, Alison K.

    2009-01-01

    Calcitonin Gene-Related Peptide (CGRP) increases in sensory neurons after inflammation and plays an important role in abnormal pain responses, but how this neuropeptide is regulated is not well understood. Both activin A and Nerve Growth Factor (NGF) increase in skin after inflammation and induce CGRP in neurons in vivo and in vitro. This study was designed to understand how neurons integrate these two signals to regulate the neuropeptide important for inflammatory pain. In adult dorsal root ganglion neurons, NGF but not activin alone produced a dose-dependent increase in CGRP mRNA. When added together with NGF, activin synergistically increased CGRP mRNA, indicating that sensory neurons combine these signals. Studies were then designed to learn if that combination occurred at a common receptor or shared intracellular signals. Studies with Activin IB receptor or trkA inhibitors suggested that each ligand required its cognate receptor to stimulate the neuropeptide. Further, activin did not augment NGF-initiated intracellular MAPK signals but instead stimulated Smad phosphorylation, suggesting these ligands initiated parallel signals in the cytoplasm. Activin synergy required several NGF intracellular signals to be present. Because activin did not further stimulate, but did require NGF intracellular signals, it appears that activin and NGF converge not in receptor or cytoplasmic signals, but in transcriptional mechanisms to regulate CGRP in sensory neurons after inflammation. PMID:17964731

  16. Notch signaling alters sensory or neuronal cell fate specification of inner ear stem cells.

    PubMed

    Jeon, Sang-Jun; Fujioka, Masato; Kim, Shi-Chan; Edge, Albert S B

    2011-06-08

    Multipotent progenitor cells in the otic placode give rise to the specialized cell types of the inner ear, including neurons, supporting cells, and hair cells. The mechanisms governing acquisition of specific fates by the cells that form the cochleovestibular organs remain poorly characterized. Here we show that whereas blocking Notch signaling with a γ-secretase inhibitor increased the conversion of inner ear stem cells to hair cells by a mechanism that involved the upregulation of bHLH transcription factor, Math1 (mouse Atoh1), differentiation to a neuronal lineage was increased by expression of the Notch intracellular domain. The shift to a neuronal lineage could be attributed in part to continued cell proliferation in cells that did not undergo sensory cell differentiation due to the high Notch signaling, but also involved upregulation of Ngn1. The Notch intracellular domain influenced Ngn1 indirectly by upregulation of Sox2, a transcription factor expressed in many neural progenitor cells, and directly by an interaction with an RBP-J binding site in the Ngn1 promoter/enhancer. The induction of Ngn1 was blocked partially by mutation of the RBP-J site and nearly completely when the mutation was combined with inhibition of Sox2 expression. Thus, Notch signaling had a significant role in the fate specification of neurons and hair cells from inner ear stem cells, and decisions about cell fate were mediated in part by a differential effect of combinatorial signaling by Notch and Sox2 on the expression of bHLH transcription factors.

  17. A tingling sanshool derivative excites primary sensory neurons and elicits nocifensive behavior in rats

    PubMed Central

    Klein, Amanda H.; Sawyer, Carolyn M.; Zanotto, Karen L.; Ivanov, Margaret A.; Cheung, Susan; Carstens, Mirela Iodi; Furrer, Stephan; Simons, Christopher T.; Slack, Jay P.

    2011-01-01

    Szechuan peppers contain hydroxy-α-sanshool that imparts desirable tingling, cooling, and numbing sensations. Hydroxy-α-sanshool activates a subset of sensory dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons by inhibiting two-pore potassium channels. We presently investigated if a tingle-evoking sanshool analog, isobutylalkenyl amide (IBA), excites rat DRG neurons and, if so, if these neurons are also activated by agonists of TRPM8, TRPA1, and/or TRPV1. Thirty-four percent of DRG neurons tested responded to IBA, with 29% of them also responding to menthol, 29% to cinnamic aldehyde, 66% to capsaicin, and subsets responding to two or more transient receptor potential (TRP) agonists. IBA-responsive cells had similar size distributions regardless of whether they responded to capsaicin or not; cells only responsive to IBA were larger. Responses to repeated application of IBA at a 5-min interstimulus interval exhibited self-desensitization (tachyphylaxis). Capsaicin did not cross-desensitize responses to IBA to any greater extent than the tachyphylaxis observed with repeated IBA applications. These findings are consistent with psychophysical observations that IBA elicits tingle sensation accompanied by pungency and cooling, with self-desensitization but little cross-desensitization by capsaicin. Intraplantar injection of IBA elicited nocifensive responses (paw licking, shaking-flinching, and guarding) in a dose-related manner similar to the effects of intraplantar capsaicin and serotonin. IBA had no effect on thermal sensitivity but enhanced mechanical sensitivity at the highest dose tested. These observations suggest that IBA elicits an unfamiliar aversive sensation that is expressed behaviorally by the limited response repertoire available to the animal. PMID:21273322

  18. Dendritic spine dysgenesis in superficial dorsal horn sensory neurons after spinal cord injury.

    PubMed

    Cao, Xiaoyu C; Pappalardo, Laura W; Waxman, Stephen G; Tan, Andrew M

    2017-01-01

    Neuropathic pain is a major complication of spinal cord injury, and despite aggressive efforts, this type of pain is refractory to available clinical treatment. Our previous work has demonstrated a structure-function link between dendritic spine dysgenesis on nociceptive sensory neurons in the intermediate zone, laminae IV/V, and chronic pain in central nervous system and peripheral nervous system injury models of neuropathic pain. To extend these findings, we performed a follow-up structural analysis to assess whether dendritic spine remodeling occurs on superficial dorsal horn neurons located in lamina II after spinal cord injury. Lamina II neurons are responsible for relaying deep, delocalized, often thermally associated pain commonly experienced in spinal cord injury pathologies. We analyzed dendritic spine morphometry and localization in tissue obtained from adult rats exhibiting neuropathic pain one-month following spinal cord injury. Although the total density of dendritic spines on lamina II neurons did not change after spinal cord injury, we observed an inverse relationship between the densities of thin- and mushroom-shaped spines: thin-spine density decreased while mushroom-spine density increased. These structural changes were specifically noted along dendritic branches within 150 µm from the soma, suggesting a possible adverse contribution to nociceptive circuit function. Intrathecal treatment with NSC23766, a Rac1-GTPase inhibitor, significantly reduced spinal cord injury-induced changes in both thin- and mushroom-shaped dendritic spines. Overall, these observations demonstrate that dendritic spine remodeling occurs in lamina II, regulated in part by the Rac1-signaling pathway, and suggests that structural abnormalities in this spinal cord region may also contribute to abnormal nociception after spinal cord injury.

  19. Dendritic spine dysgenesis in superficial dorsal horn sensory neurons after spinal cord injury

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Xiaoyu C; Pappalardo, Laura W; Waxman, Stephen G

    2017-01-01

    Neuropathic pain is a major complication of spinal cord injury, and despite aggressive efforts, this type of pain is refractory to available clinical treatment. Our previous work has demonstrated a structure–function link between dendritic spine dysgenesis on nociceptive sensory neurons in the intermediate zone, laminae IV/V, and chronic pain in central nervous system and peripheral nervous system injury models of neuropathic pain. To extend these findings, we performed a follow-up structural analysis to assess whether dendritic spine remodeling occurs on superficial dorsal horn neurons located in lamina II after spinal cord injury. Lamina II neurons are responsible for relaying deep, delocalized, often thermally associated pain commonly experienced in spinal cord injury pathologies. We analyzed dendritic spine morphometry and localization in tissue obtained from adult rats exhibiting neuropathic pain one-month following spinal cord injury. Although the total density of dendritic spines on lamina II neurons did not change after spinal cord injury, we observed an inverse relationship between the densities of thin- and mushroom-shaped spines: thin-spine density decreased while mushroom-spine density increased. These structural changes were specifically noted along dendritic branches within 150 µm from the soma, suggesting a possible adverse contribution to nociceptive circuit function. Intrathecal treatment with NSC23766, a Rac1-GTPase inhibitor, significantly reduced spinal cord injury-induced changes in both thin- and mushroom-shaped dendritic spines. Overall, these observations demonstrate that dendritic spine remodeling occurs in lamina II, regulated in part by the Rac1-signaling pathway, and suggests that structural abnormalities in this spinal cord region may also contribute to abnormal nociception after spinal cord injury. PMID:28326929

  20. Attenuated sensory deprivation-induced changes of parvalbumin neuron density in the barrel cortex of FcγRllB-deficient mice.

    PubMed

    Watanabe, Makiko; Ueno, Hiroshi; Suemitsu, Shunsuke; Yokobayashi, Eriko; Matsumoto, Yosuke; Usui, Shinichi; Sujiura, Hiroko; Okamoto, Motoi

    2012-01-01

    Recent studies have demonstrated the important role of immune molecules in the development of neuronal circuitry and synaptic plasticity. We have detected the presence of FcγRllB protein in parvalbumin-containing inhibitory interneurons (PV neurons). In the present study, we examined the appearance of PV neurons in the barrel cortex and the effect of sensory deprivation in FcγRllB-deficient mice (FcγRllB-/-) and wild-type mice. There was no substantial difference in the appearance of PV neurons in the developing barrel cortex between FcγRllB-/- and wild-type mice. Sensory deprivation from immediately after birth (P0) or P7 to P12-P14 induced an increase in PV neurons. In contrast, sensory deprivation from P7 or P14 to P28, but not from P21 to P28, decreased PV neurons in wild-type mice. However, sensory deprivation from P0 or P7 to P12-P14 did not increase PV neurons and sensory deprivation from P7 or P14 to P28 did not decrease or only modestly decreased PV neurons in FcγRllB-/- mice. The results indicate that expression of PV is regulated by sensory experience and the second and third postnatal weeks are a sensitive period for sensory deprivation, and suggest that FcγRllB contributes to sensory experience-regulated expression of PV.

  1. Identification of different types of spinal afferent nerve endings that encode noxious and innocuous stimuli in the large intestine using a novel anterograde tracing technique.

    PubMed

    Spencer, Nick J; Kyloh, Melinda; Duffield, Michael

    2014-01-01

    In mammals, sensory stimuli in visceral organs, including those that underlie pain perception, are detected by spinal afferent neurons, whose cell bodies lie in dorsal root ganglia (DRG). One of the major challenges in visceral organs has been how to identify the different types of nerve endings of spinal afferents that transduce sensory stimuli into action potentials. The reason why spinal afferent nerve endings have been so challenging to identify is because no techniques have been available, until now, that can selectively label only spinal afferents, in high resolution. We have utilized an anterograde tracing technique, recently developed in our laboratory, which facilitates selective labeling of only spinal afferent axons and their nerve endings in visceral organs. Mice were anesthetized, lumbosacral DRGs surgically exposed, then injected with dextran-amine. Seven days post-surgery, the large intestine was removed. The characteristics of thirteen types of spinal afferent nerve endings were identified in detail. The greatest proportion of nerve endings was in submucosa (32%), circular muscle (25%) and myenteric ganglia (22%). Two morphologically distinct classes innervated myenteric ganglia. These were most commonly a novel class of intraganglionic varicose endings (IGVEs) and occasionally rectal intraganglionic laminar endings (rIGLEs). Three distinct classes of varicose nerve endings were found to innervate the submucosa and circular muscle, while one class innervated internodal strands, blood vessels, crypts of lieberkuhn, the mucosa and the longitudinal muscle. Distinct populations of sensory endings were CGRP-positive. We present the first complete characterization of the different types of spinal afferent nerve endings in a mammalian visceral organ. The findings reveal an unexpectedly complex array of different types of primary afferent endings that innervate specific layers of the large intestine. Some of the novel classes of nerve endings identified

  2. Age-associated loss of selectivity in human olfactory sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Rawson, Nancy E; Gomez, George; Cowart, Beverly J; Kriete, Andres; Pribitkin, Edmund; Restrepo, Diego

    2012-09-01

    We report a cross-sectional study of olfactory impairment with age based on both odorant-stimulated responses of human olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs) and tests of olfactory threshold sensitivity. A total of 621 OSNs from 440 subjects in 2 age groups of younger (≤ 45 years) and older (≥ 60 years) subjects were investigated using fluorescence intensity ratio fura-2 imaging. OSNs were tested for responses to 2 odorant mixtures, as well as to subsets of and individual odors in those mixtures. Whereas cells from younger donors were highly selective in the odorants to which they responded, cells from older donors were more likely to respond to multiple odor stimuli, despite a loss in these subjects' absolute olfactory sensitivity, suggesting a loss of specificity. This degradation in peripheral cellular specificity may impact odor discrimination and olfactory adaptation in the elderly. It is also possible that chronic adaptation as a result of reduced specificity contributes to observed declines in absolute sensitivity.

  3. Sensory deprivation differentially impacts the dendritic development of pyramidal versus non-pyramidal neurons in layer 6 of mouse barrel cortex.

    PubMed

    Chen, Chia-Chien; Tam, Danny; Brumberg, Joshua C

    2012-04-01

    Early postnatal sensory experience can have profound impacts on the structure and function of cortical circuits affecting behavior. Using the mouse whisker-to-barrel system we chronically deprived animals of normal sensory experience by bilaterally trimming their whiskers every other day from birth for the first postnatal month. Brain tissue was then processed for Golgi staining and neurons in layer 6 of barrel cortex were reconstructed in three dimensions. Dendritic and somatic parameters were compared between sensory-deprived and normal sensory experience groups. Results demonstrated that layer 6 non-pyramidal neurons in the chronically deprived group showed an expansion of their dendritic arbors. The pyramidal cells responded to sensory deprivation with increased somatic size and basilar dendritic arborization but overall decreased apical dendritic parameters. In sum, sensory deprivation impacted on the neuronal architecture of pyramidal and non-pyramidal neurons in layer 6, which may provide a substrate for observed physiological and behavioral changes resulting from whisker trimming.

  4. Spinal motor and sensory neurons are androgen targets in an acrobatic bird.

    PubMed

    Fuxjager, Matthew J; Schultz, J Douglas; Barske, Julia; Feng, Ni Y; Fusani, Leonida; Mirzatoni, Anahid; Day, Lainy B; Hau, Michaela; Schlinger, Barney A

    2012-08-01

    Sex steroids affect the motivation to court mates, but less is known about how they influence motor movements associated with courtship behavior. Steroidal control of motor function may be especially important for species in which courtship requires superior strength, stamina, and neuromuscular coordination. Here we use the golden-collared manakin (Manacus vitellinus) to examine whether the neuromuscular circuitry that controls motoric aspects of courtship activity is sensitive to androgens. Males of this tropical species attract mates by rapidly jumping among branches in a courtship arena and using their wings to produce loud wing snaps. Testosterone activates this display via the androgen receptor (AR), and past work reveals that manakins injected with radio-labeled T ((3)H-T) accumulate radioactivity in the spinal cord. Thus, we used quantitative PCR to measure AR, estrogen receptor-α (ER-α) subtype, and aromatase (AROM) mRNA in spinal cords of male and female manakins and zebra finches. Expression of AR, but not ER-α or aromatase, was higher throughout the manakin spinal cord compared with the zebra finch. Next, we tested whether AR-expressing skeletal muscles are innervated by motor and sensory neurons that also express AR. To do this, we backfilled spinal neurons by injecting fluorescent tracers into select AR-sensitive wing and leg muscles of wild caught male and female manakins. We then removed these spinal cords and measured AR expression with in situ hybridization. Both sexes showed abundant AR mRNA in the cervical and lumbosacral spinal enlargements as well as in dorsal root ganglia attached to these enlargements. Together our findings suggest that androgens act widely on peripheral motor and sensory circuits in golden-collared manakins to influence wing snapping displays.

  5. Activation and desensitization of TRPV1 channels in sensory neurons by the PPARα agonist palmitoylethanolamide

    PubMed Central

    Ambrosino, Paolo; Soldovieri, Maria Virginia; Russo, Claudio; Taglialatela, Maurizio

    2013-01-01

    Background and Purpose Palmitoylethanolamide (PEA) is an endogenous fatty acid amide displaying anti-inflammatory and analgesic actions. To investigate the molecular mechanism responsible for these effects, the ability of PEA and of pain-inducing stimuli such as capsaicin (CAP) or bradykinin (BK) to influence intracellular calcium concentrations ([Ca2+]i) in peripheral sensory neurons, has been assessed in the present study. The potential involvement of the transcription factor PPARα and of TRPV1 channels in PEA-induced effects was also studied. Experimental Approach [Ca2+]i was evaluated by single-cell microfluorimetry in differentiated F11 cells. Activation of TRPV1 channels was assessed by imaging and patch-clamp techniques in CHO cells transiently-transfected with rat TRPV1 cDNA. Key Results In F11 cells, PEA (1–30 μM) dose-dependently increased [Ca2+]i. The TRPV1 antagonists capsazepine (1 μM) and SB-366791 (1 μM), as well as the PPARα antagonist GW-6471 (10 μM), inhibited PEA-induced [Ca2+]i increase; blockers of cannabinoid receptors were ineffective. PEA activated TRPV1 channels heterologously expressed in CHO cells; this effect appeared to be mediated at least in part by PPARα. When compared with CAP, PEA showed similar potency and lower efficacy, and caused stronger TRPV1 currents desensitization. Sub-effective PEA concentrations, closer to those found in vivo, counteracted CAP- and BK-induced [Ca2+]i transients, as well as CAP-induced TRPV1 activation. Conclusions and Implications Activation of PPARα and TRPV1 channels, rather than of cannabinoid receptors, largely mediate PEA-induced [Ca2+]i transients in sensory neurons. Differential TRPV1 activation and desensitization by CAP and PEA might contribute to their distinct pharmacological profile, possibly translating into potentially relevant clinical differences. PMID:23083124

  6. Rictor regulates phosphorylation of the novel protein kinase C Apl II in Aplysia sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Labban, Margaret; Dyer, John R; Sossin, Wayne S

    2012-09-01

    Rapamycin-insensitive companion of TOR (Rictor) is a conserved component of target of rapamycin complex 2 (TORC2), a complex implicated in phosphorylation of a number of signal transduction-related kinases, including protein kinase Cs (PKCs) at their 'hydrophobic' site in the carboxy-terminal extension domain. In the marine mollusk, Aplysia californica, an increase in phosphorylation of the novel PKC, Apl II, at the hydrophobic site is associated with a protein synthesis-dependent increase in synaptic strength seen after continuous application of serotonin. To determine if Rictor plays a role in this increase, we cloned the Aplysia ortholog of Rictor (ApRictor). An siRNA-mediated decrease in ApRictor levels in Aplysia sensory neurons led to a decrease in the phosphorylation of PKC Apl II at the hydrophobic site suggesting a role for ApRictor in hydrophobic site phosphorylation. However, over-expression of ApRictor was not sufficient to increase phosphorylation of PKC Apl II. Continuous application of serotonin increased phosphorylation of PKC Apl II at the hydrophobic site in cultured sensory neurons, and this was blocked by Torin, which inhibits both TORC1 and TORC2. Over-expression of ApRictor did not lead to change in the magnitude of serotonin-mediated phosphorylation, but did lead to a small increase in the membrane localization of phosphorylated PKC Apl II. In conclusion, these studies implicate Rictor in phosphorylation of a novel PKC during synaptic plasticity and suggest an additional role for Rictor in regulating the localization of PKCs.

  7. Neurotrophic Factor