Science.gov

Sample records for rat sensory neurons

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Reproductive experience modified dendritic spines on cortical pyramidal neurons to enhance sensory perception and spatial learning in rats.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jeng-Rung; Lim, Seh Hong; Chung, Sin-Cun; Lee, Yee-Fun; Wang, Yueh-Jan; Tseng, Guo-Fang; Wang, Tsyr-Jiuan

    2017-01-27

    Behavioral adaptations during motherhood are aimed at increasing reproductive success. Alterations of hormones during motherhood could trigger brain morphological changes to underlie behavioral alterations. Here we investigated whether motherhood changes a rat's sensory perception and spatial memory in conjunction with cortical neuronal structural changes. Female rats of different statuses, including virgin, pregnant, lactating, and primiparous rats were studied. Behavioral test showed that the lactating rats were most sensitive to heat, while rats with motherhood and reproduction experience outperformed virgin rats in a water maze task. By intracellular dye injection and computer-assisted 3-dimensional reconstruction, the dendritic arbors and spines of the layer III and V pyramidal neurons of the somatosensory cortex and CA1 hippocampal pyramidal neurons were revealed for closer analysis. The results showed that motherhood and reproductive experience increased dendritic spines but not arbors or the lengths of the layer III and V pyramidal neurons of the somatosensory cortex and CA1 hippocampal pyramidal neurons. In addition, lactating rats had a higher incidence of spines than pregnant or primiparous rats. The increase of dendritic spines was coupled with increased expression of the glutamatergic postsynaptic marker protein (PSD-95), especially in lactating rats. On the basis of the present results, it is concluded that motherhood enhanced rat sensory perception and spatial memory and was accompanied by increases in dendritic spines on output neurons of the somatosensory cortex and CA1 hippocampus. The effect was sustained for at least 6 weeks after the weaning of the pups.

  10. 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

  11. Reproductive experience modified dendritic spines on cortical pyramidal neurons to enhance sensory perception and spatial learning in rats

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Jeng-Rung; Lim, Seh Hong; Chung, Sin-Cun; Lee, Yee-Fun; Wang, Yueh-Jan; Tseng, Guo-Fang; Wang, Tsyr-Jiuan

    2016-01-01

    Behavioral adaptations during motherhood are aimed at increasing reproductive success. Alterations of hormones during motherhood could trigger brain morphological changes to underlie behavioral alterations. Here we investigated whether motherhood changes a rat’s sensory perception and spatial memory in conjunction with cortical neuronal structural changes. Female rats of different statuses, including virgin, pregnant, lactating, and primiparous rats were studied. Behavioral test showed that the lactating rats were most sensitive to heat, while rats with motherhood and reproduction experience outperformed virgin rats in a water maze task. By intracellular dye injection and computer-assisted 3-dimensional reconstruction, the dendritic arbors and spines of the layer III and V pyramidal neurons of the somatosensory cortex and CA1 hippocampal pyramidal neurons were revealed for closer analysis. The results showed that motherhood and reproductive experience increased dendritic spines but not arbors or the lengths of the layer III and V pyramidal neurons of the somatosensory cortex and CA1 hippocampal pyramidal neurons. In addition, lactating rats had a higher incidence of spines than pregnant or primiparous rats. The increase of dendritic spines was coupled with increased expression of the glutamatergic postsynaptic marker protein (PSD-95), especially in lactating rats. On the basis of the present results, it is concluded that motherhood enhanced rat sensory perception and spatial memory and was accompanied by increases in dendritic spines on output neurons of the somatosensory cortex and CA1 hippocampus. The effect was sustained for at least 6 weeks after the weaning of the pups. PMID:27784858

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. TRPA1 receptor localisation in the human peripheral nervous system and functional studies in cultured human and rat sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Anand, U; Otto, W R; Facer, P; Zebda, N; Selmer, I; Gunthorpe, M J; Chessell, I P; Sinisi, M; Birch, R; Anand, P

    2008-06-20

    TRPA1 is a receptor expressed by sensory neurons, that is activated by low temperature (<17 degrees C) and plant derivatives such as cinnamaldehyde and isoeugenol, to elicit sensations including pain. Using immunohistochemistry, we have, for the first time, localised TRPA1 in human DRG neurons, spinal cord motoneurones and nerve roots, peripheral nerves, intestinal myenteric plexus neurones, and skin basal keratinocytes. TRPA1 co-localised with a subset of hDRG neurons positive for TRPV1, the heat and capsaicin receptor. The number of small/medium TRPA1 positive neurons (< or =50 microm) was increased after hDRG avulsion injury [percentage of cells, median (range): controls 16.5 (7-23); injured 46 (34-55); P<0.005], but the number of large TRPA1 neurons was unchanged [control 19.5 (13-31); injured 21 (11-35)]. Similar TRPA1 changes were observed in cultured hDRG neurons, after exposure to a combination of key neurotrophic factors NGF, GDNF and NT-3 (NTFs) in vitro. We used calcium imaging to examine responses of HEK cells transfected with hTRPA1 cDNA, and of human and rat DRG neurons cultured with or without added NTFs, to cinnamaldehyde (CA) and isoeugenol (IE). Exposure to NTFs in vitro sensitized cultured human sensory neuronal responses to CA; repeated CA exposure produced desensitisation. In rDRG neurons, low (225 microM) CA preincubation enhanced capsaicin responses, while high (450 microM and 2mM) CA caused inhibition which was partially reversed in the presence of 8 bromo cAMP, indicating receptor dephosphorylation. While TRPA1 localisation is more widespread than TRPV1, it represents a promising novel drug target for the treatment of chronic pain and hypersensitivity.

  20. The properties, distribution and function of Na(+)-Ca(2+) exchanger isoforms in rat cutaneous sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Scheff, N N; Yilmaz, E; Gold, M S

    2014-11-15

    The Na(+)-Ca(2+) exchanger (NCX) appears to play an important role in the regulation of the high K(+)-evoked Ca(2+) transient in putative nociceptive dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons. The purpose of the present study was to (1) characterize the properties of NCX activity in subpopulations of DRG neurons, (2) identify the isoform(s) underlying NCX activity, and (3) begin to assess the function of the isoform(s) in vivo. In retrogradely labelled neurons from the glabrous skin of adult male Sprague-Dawley rats, NCX activity, as assessed with fura-2-based microfluorimetry, was only detected in putative nociceptive IB4+ neurons. There were two modes of NCX activity: one was evoked in response to relatively large and long lasting (∼325 nm for >12 s) increases in the concentration of intracellular Ca(2+) ([Ca(2+)]i), and a second was active at resting [Ca(2+)]i > ∼150 nm. There also were two modes of evoked activity: one that decayed relatively rapidly (<5 min) and a second that persisted (>10 min). Whereas mRNA encoding all three NCX isoforms (NCX1-3) was detected in putative nociceptive cutaneous neurons with single cell PCR, pharmacological analysis and small interfering RNA (siRNA) knockdown of each isoform in vivo suggested that NCX2 and 3 were responsible for NCX activity. Western blot analyses suggested that NCX isoforms were differentially distributed within sensory neurons. Functional assays of excitability, action potential propagation, and nociceptive behaviour suggest NCX activity has little influence on excitability per se, but instead influences axonal conduction velocity, resting membrane potential, and nociceptive threshold. Together these results indicate that the function of NCX in the regulation of [Ca(2+)]i in putative nociceptive neurons may be unique relative to other cells in which these exchanger isoforms have been characterized and it has the potential to influence sensory neuron properties at multiple levels.

  1. 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

  2. Block of voltage-gated potassium channels by Pacific ciguatoxin-1 contributes to increased neuronal excitability in rat sensory neurons

    SciTech Connect

    Birinyi-Strachan, Liesl C.; Gunning, Simon J.; Lewis, Richard J.; Nicholson, Graham M. . E-mail: Graham.Nicholson@uts.edu.au

    2005-04-15

    The present study investigated the actions of the polyether marine toxin Pacific ciguatoxin-1 (P-CTX-1) on neuronal excitability in rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons using patch-clamp recording techniques. Under current-clamp conditions, bath application of 2-20 nM P-CTX-1 caused a rapid, concentration-dependent depolarization of the resting membrane potential in neurons expressing tetrodotoxin (TTX)-sensitive voltage-gated sodium (Na{sub v}) channels. This action was completely suppressed by the addition of 200 nM TTX to the external solution, indicating that this effect was mediated through TTX-sensitive Na{sub v} channels. In addition, P-CTX-1 also prolonged action potential and afterhyperpolarization (AHP) duration. In a subpopulation of neurons, P-CTX-1 also produced tonic action potential firing, an effect that was not accompanied by significant oscillation of the resting membrane potential. Conversely, in neurons expressing TTX-resistant Na{sub v} currents, P-CTX-1 failed to alter any parameter of neuronal excitability examined in this study. Under voltage-clamp conditions in rat DRG neurons, P-CTX-1 inhibited both delayed-rectifier and 'A-type' potassium currents in a dose-dependent manner, actions that occurred in the absence of alterations to the voltage dependence of activation. These actions appear to underlie the prolongation of the action potential and AHP, and contribute to repetitive firing. These data indicate that a block of potassium channels contributes to the increase in neuronal excitability, associated with a modulation of Na{sub v} channel gating, observed clinically in response to ciguatera poisoning.

  3. TRPA1 is functionally expressed primarily by IB4-binding, non-peptidergic mouse and rat sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Barabas, Marie E; Kossyreva, Elena A; Stucky, Cheryl L

    2012-01-01

    Subpopulations of somatosensory neurons are characterized by functional properties and expression of receptor proteins and surface markers. CGRP expression and IB4-binding are commonly used to define peptidergic and non-peptidergic subpopulations. TRPA1 is a polymodal, plasma membrane ion channel that contributes to mechanical and cold hypersensitivity during tissue injury, making it a key target for pain therapeutics. Some studies have shown that TRPA1 is predominantly expressed by peptidergic sensory neurons, but others indicate that TRPA1 is expressed extensively within non-peptidergic, IB4-binding neurons. We used FURA-2 calcium imaging to define the functional distribution of TRPA1 among peptidergic and non-peptidergic adult mouse (C57BL/6J) DRG neurons. Approximately 80% of all small-diameter (<27 µm) neurons from lumbar 1-6 DRGs that responded to TRPA1 agonists allyl isothiocyanate (AITC; 79%) or cinnamaldehyde (84%) were IB4-positive. Retrograde labeling via plantar hind paw injection of WGA-Alexafluor594 showed similarly that most (81%) cutaneous neurons responding to TRPA1 agonists were IB4-positive. Additionally, we cultured DRG neurons from a novel CGRP-GFP mouse where GFP expression is driven by the CGRPα promoter, enabling identification of CGRP-expressing live neurons. Interestingly, 78% of TRPA1-responsive neurons were CGRP-negative. Co-labeling with IB4 revealed that the majority (66%) of TRPA1 agonist responders were IB4-positive but CGRP-negative. Among TRPA1-null DRGs, few small neurons (2-4%) responded to either TRPA1 agonist, indicating that both cinnamaldehyde and AITC specifically target TRPA1. Additionally, few large neurons (≥27 µm diameter) responded to AITC (6%) or cinnamaldehyde (4%), confirming that most large-diameter somata lack functional TRPA1. Comparison of mouse and rat DRGs showed that the majority of TRPA1-responsive neurons in both species were IB4-positive. Together, these data demonstrate that TRPA1 is functionally

  4. Subcortical connections of normotopic and heterotopic neurons in sensory and motor cortices of the tish mutant rat.

    PubMed

    Schottler, F; Couture, D; Rao, A; Kahn, H; Lee, K S

    1998-05-25

    Orthograde and retrograde tracers were used to examine subcortical connections of neurons in the neurological mutant tish rat. This animal exhibits bilateral heterotopia similar to those observed in epileptic humans with subcortical band heterotopia. Terminal varicosities were labeled in the striatum, thalamus, brainstem, and spinal cord following injections of the anterograde tracer biotinylated dextran amine (BDA) into the heterotopic cortex. The general topography of corticothalamic projections was evaluated by injecting the retrograde tracer Fluoro-Gold (FG) into ventral thalamic nuclei. Retrograde labeling of small-to-medium sized neurons was observed in layer VI of topographically restricted portions of the normotopic cortex. Similar appearing cells were labeled in the neighboring portions of the underlying heterotopia; however, these neurons did not display characteristic lamination or radial orientation. Thalamocortical terminals labeled by injecting BDA into the ventroposterolateral nucleus (VPL) were observed primarily in layer IV of the medial aspect of the normotopic somatosensory cortex. In contrast, a radial column of terminals was present in the underlying heterotopia. Typical barrel labeling was found in the lateral aspect of the normotopic somatosensory cortex after injecting the ventroposteromedial nucleus (VPM), whereas more diffuse patches of labeling were observed in the underlying heterotopia. Heterotopic neurons in the tish cortex, thus, exhibit characteristic features of subcortical connectivity. Both normotopic and heterotopic neurons in the tish brain project to appropriate subcortical sites and establish bidirectional topographic connections with the thalamus. These results suggest that primary sensory-motor information is represented in a parallel manner in the normotopic and heterotopic cortices of the tish rat.

  5. Gastrodin Inhibits Allodynia and Hyperalgesia in Painful Diabetic Neuropathy Rats by Decreasing Excitability of Nociceptive Primary Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Ye, Xin; Han, Wen-Juan; Wang, Wen-Ting; Luo, Ceng; Hu, San-Jue

    2012-01-01

    Painful diabetic neuropathy (PDN) is a common complication of diabetes mellitus and adversely affects the patients’ quality of life. Evidence has accumulated that PDN is associated with hyperexcitability of peripheral nociceptive primary sensory neurons. However, the precise cellular mechanism underlying PDN remains elusive. This may result in the lacking of effective therapies for the treatment of PDN. The phenolic glucoside, gastrodin, which is a main constituent of the Chinese herbal medicine Gastrodia elata Blume, has been widely used as an anticonvulsant, sedative, and analgesic since ancient times. However, the cellular mechanisms underlying its analgesic actions are not well understood. By utilizing a combination of behavioral surveys and electrophysiological recordings, the present study investigated the role of gastrodin in an experimental rat model of STZ-induced PDN and to further explore the underlying cellular mechanisms. Intraperitoneal administration of gastrodin effectively attenuated both the mechanical allodynia and thermal hyperalgesia induced by STZ injection. Whole-cell patch clamp recordings were obtained from nociceptive, capsaicin-sensitive small diameter neurons of the intact dorsal root ganglion (DRG). Recordings from diabetic rats revealed that the abnormal hyperexcitability of neurons was greatly abolished by application of GAS. To determine which currents were involved in the antinociceptive action of gastrodin, we examined the effects of gastrodin on transient sodium currents (INaT) and potassium currents in diabetic small DRG neurons. Diabetes caused a prominent enhancement of INaT and a decrease of potassium currents, especially slowly inactivating potassium currents (IAS); these effects were completely reversed by GAS in a dose-dependent manner. Furthermore, changes in activation and inactivation kinetics of INaT and total potassium current as well as IAS currents induced by STZ were normalized by GAS. This study provides a clear

  6. Expression of Semaphorins, Neuropilins, VEGF, and Tenascins in Rat and Human Primary Sensory Neurons after a Dorsal Root Injury

    PubMed Central

    Lindholm, Tomas; Risling, Mårten; Carlstedt, Thomas; Hammarberg, Henrik; Wallquist, Wilhelm; Cullheim, Staffan; Sköld, Mattias K.

    2017-01-01

    Dorsal root injury is a situation not expected to be followed by a strong regenerative growth, or growth of the injured axon into the central nervous system of the spinal cord, if the central axon of the dorsal root is injured but of strong regeneration if subjected to injury to the peripherally projecting axons. The clinical consequence of axonal injury is loss of sensation and may also lead to neuropathic pain. In this study, we have used in situ hybridization to examine the distribution of mRNAs for the neural guidance molecules semaphorin 3A (SEMA3A), semaphorin 3F (SEMA3F), and semaphorin 4F (SEMA4F), their receptors neuropilin 1 (NP1) and neuropilin 2 (NP2) but also for the neuropilin ligand vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and Tenascin J1, an extracellular matrix molecule involved in axonal guidance, in rat dorsal root ganglia (DRG) after a unilateral dorsal rhizotomy (DRT) or sciatic nerve transcetion (SNT). The studied survival times were 1–365 days. The different forms of mRNAs were unevenly distributed between the different size classes of sensory nerve cells. The results show that mRNA for SEMA3A was diminished after trauma to the sensory nerve roots in rats. The SEMA3A receptor NP1, and SEMA3F receptor NP2, was significantly upregulated in the DRG neurons after DRT and SNT. SEMA4F was upregulated after a SNT. The expression of mRNA for VEGF in DRG neurons after DRT showed a significant upregulation that was high even a year after the injuries. These data suggest a role for the semaphorins, neuropilins, VEGF, and J1 in the reactions after dorsal root lesions. PMID:28270793

  7. Capsaicin-sensitive sensory neurons are involved in bicarbonate secretion induced by lansoprazole, a proton pump inhibitor, in rats.

    PubMed

    Inada, I; Satoh, H

    1996-04-01

    Lansoprazole, a proton pump inhibitor, exerts prominent antiulcer activity via both antisecretory and mucosal protective actions. Although the antisecretory action has been explained by inactivation of (H+, K+)-ATPase in parietal cells, the mode of mucosal protective action remains to be elucidated. In the present study, the effect of lansoprazole on duodenal bicarbonate secretion was studied in anesthetized rats to clarify the mode of the mucosal protective action. Lansoprazole (0.1 mM) applied topically to the duodenum significantly (P < 0.01) increased bicarbonate secretion by 0.36 +/- 0.11 microeq/15 min (21 +/- 5%) compared with the value in the vehicle control. Topical administration of capsaicin (10 mg/ml) in the duodenum and intravenous infusion of vasoactive intestinal peptide (10 micrograms/kg/hr) increased bicarbonate secretion. Five-minute perfusion of the duodenal loop with 100 mM HCl increased bicarbonate secretion. Administration of lansoprazole (0.3 and 1 mg/kg, intravenously) 60 min before luminal acidification enhanced the acid-induced bicarbonate secretion dose-dependently and significantly (P < 0.01). In the capsaicin-pretreated rats, the effects of lansoprazole on basal and acid-induced bicarbonate secretion were significantly (P < 0.05) decreased compared with that of control group. These results indicate that lansoprazole increases basal and acid-induced bicarbonate secretion in the duodenum in rats and that capsaicin-sensitive sensory neurons may be involved in the mode of action for these effects.

  8. Temperature coefficient of membrane currents induced by noxious heat in sensory neurones in the rat

    PubMed Central

    Vyklický, L; Vlachová, V; Vitásková, Z; Dittert, I; Kabát, M; Orkand, R K

    1999-01-01

    Membrane currents induced by noxious heat (Iheat) were studied in cultured dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurones from newborn rats using ramps of increasing temperature of superfusing solutions. Iheat was observed in about 70 % of small (< 25 μm) DRG neurones. At -60 mV, Iheat exhibited a threshold at about 43 °C and reached its maximum, sometimes exceeding 1 nA, at 52 °C (716 ± 121 pA; n = 39). Iheat exhibited a strong temperature sensitivity (temperature coefficient over a 10 °C temperature range (Q10) = 17·8 ± 2·1, mean ± s.d., in the range 47-51 °C; n = 41), distinguishing it from the currents induced by capsaicin (1 μM), bradykinin (5 μM) and weak acid (pH 6·1 or 6·3), which exhibited Q10 values of 1·6-2·8 over the whole temperature range (23-52 °C). Repeated heat ramps resulted in a decrease of the maximum Iheat and the current was evoked at lower temperatures. A single ramp exceeding 57 °C resulted in an irreversible change in Iheat. In a subsequent trial, maximum Iheat was decreased to less than 50 %, its threshold was lowered to a temperature just above that in the bath and its maximum Q10 was markedly lower (5·6 ± 0·8; n = 8). DRG neurones that exhibited Iheat were sensitive to capsaicin. However, four capsaicin-sensitive neurones out of 41 were insensitive to noxious heat. There was no correlation between the amplitude of capsaicin-induced responses and Iheat. In the absence of extracellular Ca2+, Q10 for Iheat was lowered from 25·3 ± 7·5 to 4·2 ± 0·4 (n = 7) in the range 41-50 °C. The tachyphylaxis, however, was still observed. A high Q10 of Iheat suggests a profound, rapid and reversible change in a protein structure in the plasma membrane of heat-sensitive nociceptors. It is hypothesized that this protein complex possesses a high net free energy of stabilization (possibly due to ionic bonds) and undergoes disassembly when exposed to noxious heat. The liberated components activate distinct cationic channels to generate Iheat

  9. 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.

  10. Calcium channel currents and their inhibition by (-)-baclofen in rat sensory neurones: modulation by guanine nucleotides.

    PubMed Central

    Dolphin, A C; Scott, R H

    1987-01-01

    1. The effect of intracellular application of the hydrolysis-resistant GTP and GDP analogues, guanosine 5'-O-3-thiotriphosphate (GTP-gamma-S), and guanosine 5'-O-2-thiodiphosphate (GDP-beta-S) has been examined on voltage-activated calcium-channel currents and the ability of the gamma-aminobutyric acid B agonist baclofen to inhibit them, in cultured rat dorsal root ganglion (d.r.g.) neurones. 2. Under control conditions, the calcium-channel current, recorded using the whole-cell patch technique with Ba2+ rather than Ca2+ as the permeant divalent cation, consists of an inactivating and a sustained current. In the presence of 500 microM-GTP-gamma-S included in the patch pipette, the calcium-channel current was activated more slowly and was largely non-inactivating during the 100 ms depolarization voltage step. The effects of GTP-gamma-S were abolished by pre-treatment of cells with pertussis toxin. 3. The calcium-channel current recorded in the presence of 500 microM-GDP-beta-S had a more marked transient component than the control calcium-channel current. The proportion of transient calcium-channel current in the presence of GDP-beta-S was not reduced in Na+-free medium. 4. No statistically significant effects of GTP-gamma-S and GDP-beta-S were observed on the calcium-activated potassium current IK(Ca), the transient outward potassium current activated in Ca2+-free medium, or on the inwardly rectifying current (Ih) activated by hyperpolarization. 5. GTP-gamma-S increased the ability of baclofen to inhibit calcium-channel currents, whereas this was decreased by GDP-beta-S and by pre-treatment of cells with pertussis toxin. The half-maximal effective dose (EC50) for baclofen was 2 microM in the presence of GTP-gamma-S, 15 microM for control and 50 microM in the presence of GDP-beta-S. Comparable results were obtained using a single concentration of the adenosine agonist 2-chloroadenosine (2-CA, 0.05 microM) to inhibit calcium-channel currents; its effect was

  11. Ca2+ influx in resting rat sensory neurones that regulates and is regulated by ryanodine-sensitive Ca2+ stores

    PubMed Central

    Usachev, Yuriy M; Thayer, Stanley A

    1999-01-01

    Store-operated, voltage-independent Ca2+ channels are activated by depletion of intracellular Ca2+ stores and mediate Ca2+ influx into non-excitable cells at resting membrane potential. We used microfluorimetry, patch-clamp and Mn2+-quench techniques to explore the possibility that a similar mechanism exists in rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurones in primary culture. Following caffeine-induced depletion, ryanodine-sensitive Ca2+ stores refilled with Ca2+ at resting membrane potential. The refilling process required extracellular Ca2+, was blocked by 2 mM Ni2+, and was facilitated by membrane hyperpolarization from −55 to −80 mV, indicating a key role for Ca2+ influx. This influx of Ca2+ was not affected by the voltage-operated Ca2+ channel (VOCC) antagonists nicardipine (10 μM), nimodipine (10 μm) or ω-grammotoxin SIA (1 μm). When ryanodine-sensitive Ca2+ stores were depleted in Ca2+-free media, a return to 2 mM external Ca2+ resulted in a pronounced [Ca2+]i overshoot, indicating an increased permeability to Ca2+. Depletion of Ca2+ stores also produced a 2-fold increase in the rate of Mn2+ influx. The [Ca2+]i overshoot and Mn2+ entry were both inhibited by Ni2+, but not by VOCC antagonists. Caffeine induced periodic Ca2+ release from, and reuptake into, ryanodine-sensitive stores. The [Ca2+]i oscillations were arrested by removal of extracellular Ca2+ or by addition of Ni2+, but they were not affected by VOCC antagonists. Hyperpolarization increased the frequency of this rhythmic activity. These data suggest the presence of a Ca2+ entry pathway in mammalian sensory neurones that is distinct from VOCCs and is regulated by ryanodine-sensitive Ca2+ stores. This pathway participates in refilling intracellular Ca2+ stores and maintaining [Ca2+]i oscillations and thus controls the balance between intra- and extracellular Ca2+ reservoirs in resting DRG neurones. PMID:10432343

  12. Calcitonin gene-related peptide immunoreactive sensory neurons in the vagal and glossopharyngeal ganglia innervating the larynx of the rat.

    PubMed

    Hayakawa, Tetsu; Kuwahara-Otani, Sachi; Maeda, Seishi; Tanaka, Koichi; Seki, Makoto

    2014-01-01

    We have examined whether calcitonin gene-related peptide-immunoreactive (CGRP-ir) neurons in the vagal and glossopharyngeal ganglia innervate the larynx. Many CGRP-ir neurons were located mostly in the superior glossopharyngeal-jugular ganglion complex that was fused the superior glossopharyngeal ganglion and the jugular ganglion in the cranial cavity. When Fluorogold was applied to the cut end of the superior laryngeal nerve (SLN) or the recurrent laryngeal nerve (RLN), many Fluorogold-labeled neurons were found in the superior glossopharyngeal-jugular ganglion complex and the nodose ganglion. Double-labeling for CGRP and Fluorogold showed that about 80% of Fluorogold-labeled neurons in the superior glossopharyngeal-jugular ganglion complex expressed CGRP-like immunoreactivity in the case of application to the SLN, and about 50% of Fluorogold-labeled neurons expressed CGRP-like immunoreactivity in the case of the RLN. Only a few double-labeled neurons were found in the nodose ganglion. The number of the Fluorogold-labeled neurons and double-labeled neurons in the superior glossopharyngeal-jugular ganglion complex in the case of the SLN was larger than that in the case of the RLN. These results indicate that sensory information from the larynx might be conveyed by many CGRP-ir neurons located in the superior glossopharyngeal-jugular ganglion complex by way of the SLN and the RLN.

  13. Thiamine, pyridoxine, cyanocobalamin and their combination inhibit thermal, but not mechanical hyperalgesia in rats with primary sensory neuron injury.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zheng-Bei; Gan, Qiang; Rupert, Ronald L; Zeng, Yin-Ming; Song, Xue-Jun

    2005-03-01

    Neuropathic pain after nerve injury is severe and intractable, and current drugs and nondrug therapies offer substantial pain relief to no more than half of affected patients. The present study investigated the analgesic roles of the B vitamins thiamine (B1), pyridoxine (B6) and cyanocobalamin (B12) in rats with neuropathic pain caused by spinal ganglia compression (CCD) or loose ligation of the sciatic nerve (CCI). Thermal hyperalgesia was determined by a significantly shortened latency of foot withdrawal to radiant heat, and mechanical hyperalgesia was determined by a significantly decreased threshold of foot withdrawal to von Frey filaments stimulation of the plantar surface of hindpaw. Results showed that (1) intraperitoneal injection of B1 (5, 10, 33 and 100 mg/kg), B6 (33 and 100 mg/kg) or B12 (0.5 and 2 mg/kg) significantly reduced thermal hyperalgesia; (2) the combination of B1, B6 and B12 synergistically inhibited thermal hyperalgesia; (3) repetitive administration of vitamin B complex (containing B1/B6/B12 33/33/0.5 mg/kg, for 1 and 2 wk) produced long-term inhibition of thermal hyperalgesia; and (4) B vitamins did not affect mechanical hyperalgesia or normal pain sensation, and exhibited similar effects on CCD and CCI induced-hyperalgesia. The present studies demonstrate effects of B vitamins on pain and hyperalgesia following primary sensory neurons injury, and suggest the possible clinical utility of B vitamins in the treatment of neuropathic painful conditions following injury, inflammation, degeneration or other disorders in the nervous systems in human beings.

  14. 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

  15. Sciatic nerve injury in adult rats causes distinct changes in the central projections of sensory neurons expressing different glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor family receptors

    PubMed Central

    Keast, Janet R.; Forrest, Shelley L.; Osborne, Peregrine B.

    2010-01-01

    Most small unmyelinated neurons in adult rat dorsal ganglia (DRG) express one or more of the co-receptors targeted by glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF), neurturin and artemin (GFRα1, GFRα2 and GFRα3 respectively). The function of these GDNF family ligands (GFLs) is not fully elucidated but recent evidence suggests GFLs could function in sensory neuron regeneration after nerve injury and peripheral nociceptor sensitisation. In this study, we used immunohistochemistry to determine if the DRG neurons targeted by each GFL change after sciatic nerve injury. We compared complete sciatic nerve transection and the chronic constriction model and found the pattern of changes incurred by each injury was broadly similar. In lumbar spinal cord, there was a widespread increase in neuronal GFRα1 immunoreactivity (IR) in the L1-6 dorsal horn. GFRα3-IR also increased but in a more restricted area. In contrast, GFRα2-IR decreased in patches of superficial dorsal horn and this loss was more extensive after transection injury. No change in calcitonin gene-related peptide-IR was detected after either injury. Analysis of double-immunolabelled L5 DRG sections suggested the main effect of injury on GFRα1- and GFRα3-IR was to increase expression in both myelinated and unmyelinated neurons. In contrast, no change in basal expression of GFRα2-IR was detected in DRG by analysis of fluorescence intensity and there was a small but significant reduction in GFRα2-IR neurons. Our results suggest the DRG neuronal populations targeted by GDNF, neurturin or artemin, and the effect of exogenous GFLs could change significantly after a peripheral nerve injury. PMID:20533358

  16. Differences in cutaneous sensory response properties of single somatosensory cortical neurons in awake and halothane anesthetized rats.

    PubMed

    Chapin, J K; Waterhouse, B D; Woodward, D J

    1981-01-01

    The major aim of this study was to investigate the effect of halothane anesthesia on different latency components of cutaneous sensory responses of single units in the primary somatosensory (SI) cortex of rats. Quantitative studies of computer generated post-stimulus time histograms were used to determine whether the increase in "nonspecific" properties often observed in the SI cortices of awake animals were attributable to a generally increased sensory responsiveness of these cells or to a selective increase of certain "nonspecific" components of their sensory response. Sensory "specificity" was investigated here by measuring the size of cutaneous receptive fields of single cells and testing their ability to follow high stimulus frequencies. Histograms generated by repetitive touch stimulation of the forepaw in awake animals were divisible into the following different latency components: (1) a short latency excitatory response which was often divisible into two peaks (E1a and E1b), and occasionally (2) a post-excitatory inhibitory phase (I1) and/or (3) a long latency excitatory peak (E2). In anesthetized animals spontaneous discharge rates were lower and the proportion of cells exhibiting either pure inhibition or post-excitatory inhibition was increased. By contrast, the longer latency excitatory components (E1b and E2) were weaker and were seen much less frequently than in the awake situation. In nine cells tested in the awake state and then again in the anesthetized state the magnitude, receptive field size, and ability to follow high frequencies of the E1a peak was slightly reduced. The E1b and E2 peaks seen in the awake state, on the other hand, were completely abolished by anesthesia. In awake animals the E1b and E2 phases exhibited relatively "nonspecific" physiological properties. This was indicated by the facts that: (1) the cutaneous receptive fields of the E1a peak were slightly smaller than those of the E1b peaks and much smaller than those of the E2

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. Hypoxic increase in nitric oxide generation of rat sensory neurons requires activation of mitochondrial complex II and voltage-gated calcium channels.

    PubMed

    Henrich, M; Paddenberg, R; Haberberger, R V; Scholz, A; Gruss, M; Hempelmann, G; Kummer, W

    2004-01-01

    Recently, we have demonstrated that sensory neurons of rat lumbar dorsal root ganglia (DRG) respond to hypoxia with an activation of endothelial nitric oxide (NO) synthase (eNOS) resulting in enhanced NO production associated with mitochondria which contributes to resistance against hypoxia. Extracellular calcium is essential to this effect. In the present study on rat DRG slices, we set out to determine what types of calcium channels operate under hypoxia, and which upstream events contribute to their activation, thereby focusing upon mitochondrial complex II. Both the metallic ions Cd2+ and Ni2+, known to inhibit voltage-gated calcium channels and T-type channels, respectively, and verapamil and nifedipine, typical blocker of L-type calcium channels completely prevented the hypoxic neuronal NO generation. Inhibition of complex II by thenoyltrifluoroacetone at the ubiquinon binding site or by 3-nitropropionic acid at the substrate binding site largely diminished hypoxic-induced NO production while having an opposite effect under normoxia. An additional blockade of voltage-gated calcium channels entirely abolished the hypoxic response. The complex II inhibitor malonate inhibited both normoxic and hypoxic NO generation. These data show that complex II activity is required for increased hypoxic NO production. Since succinate dehydrogenase activity of complex II decreased at hypoxia, as measured by histochemistry and densitometry, we propose a hypoxia-induced functional switch of complex II from succinate dehydrogenase to fumarate reductase, which subsequently leads to activation of voltage-gated calcium channels resulting in increased NO production by eNOS.

  1. 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.

  2. Molecular mechanism for opioid dichotomy: bidirectional effect of μ-opioid receptors on P2X₃ receptor currents in rat sensory neurones.

    PubMed

    Chizhmakov, Igor; Kulyk, Vyacheslav; Khasabova, Iryna; Khasabov, Sergey; Simone, Donald; Bakalkin, Georgy; Gordienko, Dmitri; Verkhratsky, Alexei; Krishtal, Oleg

    2015-06-01

    Here, we describe a molecular switch associated with opioid receptors-linked signalling cascades that provides a dual opioid control over P2X3 purinoceptor in sensory neurones. Leu-enkephalin inhibited P2X3-mediated currents with IC50 ~10 nM in ~25% of small nociceptive rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurones. In contrast, in neurones pretreated with pertussis toxin leu-enkephalin produced stable and significant increase of P2X3 currents. All effects of opioid were abolished by selective μ-opioid receptor antagonist D-Phe-Cys-Tyr-D-Trp-Orn-Thr-Pen-Thr-NH2 (CTOP), nonselective inhibitor naloxone, and by PLC inhibitor U73122. Thus, we discovered a dual link between purinoceptors and μ-opioid receptors: the latter exert both inhibitory (pertussis toxin-sensitive) and stimulatory (pertussis toxin-insensitive) actions on P2X3 receptors through phospholipase C (PLC)-dependent pathways. This dual opioid control of P2X3 receptors may provide a molecular explanation for dichotomy of opioid therapy. Pharmacological control of this newly identified facilitation/inhibition switch may open new perspectives for the adequate medical use of opioids, the most powerful pain-killing agents known today.

  3. Mitochondria and plasma membrane Ca2+-ATPase control presynaptic Ca2+ clearance in capsaicin-sensitive rat sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Shutov, Leonid P; Kim, Man-Su; Houlihan, Patrick R; Medvedeva, Yuliya V; Usachev, Yuriy M

    2013-01-01

    The central processes of primary nociceptors form synaptic connections with the second-order nociceptive neurons located in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord. These synapses gate the flow of nociceptive information from the periphery to the CNS, and plasticity at these synapses contributes to centrally mediated hyperalgesia and allodynia. Although exocytosis and synaptic plasticity are controlled by Ca2+ at the release sites, the mechanisms underlying presynaptic Ca2+ signalling at the nociceptive synapses are not well characterized. We examined the presynaptic mechanisms regulating Ca2+ clearance following electrical stimulation in capsaicin-sensitive nociceptors using a dorsal root ganglion (DRG)/spinal cord neuron co-culture system. Cytosolic Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]i) recovery following electrical stimulation was well approximated by a monoexponential function with a τ∼2 s. Inhibition of sarco-endoplasmic reticulum Ca2+-ATPase did not affect presynaptic [Ca2+]i recovery, and blocking plasmalemmal Na+/Ca2+ exchange produced only a small reduction in the rate of [Ca2+]i recovery (∼12%) that was independent of intracellular K+. However, [Ca2+]i recovery in presynaptic boutons strongly depended on the plasma membrane Ca2+-ATPase (PMCA) and mitochondria that accounted for ∼47 and 40%, respectively, of presynaptic Ca2+ clearance. Measurements using a mitochondria-targeted Ca2+ indicator, mtPericam, demonstrated that presynaptic mitochondria accumulated Ca2+ in response to electrical stimulation. Quantitative analysis revealed that the mitochondrial Ca2+ uptake is highly sensitive to presynaptic [Ca2+]i elevations, and occurs at [Ca2+]i levels as low as ∼200–300 nm. Using RT-PCR, we detected expression of several putative mitochondrial Ca2+ transporters in DRG, such as MCU, Letm1 and NCLX. Collectively, this work identifies PMCA and mitochondria as the major regulators of presynaptic Ca2+ signalling at the first sensory synapse, and underlines the high

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. Effects of unilateral and bilateral training in a reaching task on dendritic branching of neurons in the rat motor-sensory forelimb cortex.

    PubMed

    Greenough, W T; Larson, J R; Withers, G S

    1985-09-01

    Effects of motor training on a neocortical nerve cell population involved in performance of the motor task were assessed by measuring Layer V pyramidal neuron apical dendritic branching in motor-sensory forelimb cortex of rats trained to reach into a tube for food. Rats were trained to reach with the forepaw they preferred to use (group PRAC), the nonpreferred forepaw (REV), both forepaws (ALT), or neither forepaw (CONT). Across groups, hemispheres opposite trained forepaws had larger apical dendritic fields, in terms of total dendritic length, number of oblique branches from the apical shaft, and length of terminal branches. Similar, although somewhat less consistent, effects were seen when results were analyzed for between- (CONT vs ALT) and within-subject comparisons (trained vs nontrained hemispheres of REV and PRAC). This finding is compatible with the hypothesis that altered dendritic patterns, with associated synapses, are involved in storage of information from the training experience. The within-subject effects mitigate suggestions that these differences arise from generally acting hormonal or metabolic consequences of the training experience, although the possibility that these effects result from neural activity per se and are unrelated to information storage cannot be excluded.

  7. Study of orexins signal transduction pathways in rat olfactory mucosa and in olfactory sensory neurons-derived cell line Odora: multiple orexin signalling pathways.

    PubMed

    Gorojankina, Tatiana; Grébert, Denise; Salesse, Roland; Tanfin, Zahra; Caillol, Monique

    2007-06-07

    Orexins A and B (OxA and OxB) are multifunctional neuropeptides implicated in the regulation of energy metabolism, wakefulness but also in a broad range of motivated behaviours. They signal through two G-protein-coupled receptors: orexin receptor 1 and 2 (Ox1R and Ox2R). The orexins and their receptors are present at all levels of the rat olfactory system: epithelium, bulb, piriform cortex but their signalling mechanisms remain unknown. We have studied orexins signal transduction pathways in the rat olfactory mucosa (OM) and in the Odora cell line derived from olfactory sensory neurons and heterologously expressing Ox1R or Ox2R. We have demonstrated by western blot and RT-PCR that multiple components of adenylyl cyclase (AC) and phospholipase C (PLC) signalling pathways were identical in OM and Odora cells. OxA and OxB induced a weak increase in IP3 in OM; they induced a significant rise in cAMP and IP3 in Odora transfected cells, suggesting the activation of AC and PLC pathways. Both OxA and OxB induced intracellular calcium elevation and transient activation of MAP kinases (ERK42/44) in Odora/Ox1R and Odora/Ox2R cells. These results suggest the existence of multiple orexins signalling pathways in Odora cells and probably in OM, corresponding to different possible roles of these peptides.

  8. Sensory neuron subpopulation-specific dysregulation of intracellular calcium in a rat model of chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy.

    PubMed

    Yilmaz, E; Gold, M S

    2015-08-06

    The purpose of the present study was to test the prediction that the unique manifestation of chemotherapeutic-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) would be reflected in a specific pattern of changes in the regulation of the intracellular Ca(2+) concentration ([Ca(2+)]i) in subpopulations of cutaneous neurons. To test this prediction, we characterized the pattern of changes in mechanical nociceptive threshold associated with paclitaxel administration (2mg/kg, iv, every other day for four days), as well as the impact of target of innervation and paclitaxel treatment on the regulation of [Ca(2+)]i in subpopulations of putative nociceptive and non-nociceptive neurons. Neurons innervating the glabrous and hairy skin of the hindpaw as well as the thigh were identified with retrograde tracers, and fura-2 was used to assess changes in [Ca(2+)]i. Paclitaxel was associated with a persistent decrease in mechanical nociceptive threshold in response to stimuli applied to the glabrous skin of the hindpaw, but not the hairy skin of the hindpaw or the thigh. However, in both putative nociceptive and non-nociceptive neurons, resting [Ca(2+)]i was significantly lower in neurons innervating the thigh after treatment. The magnitude of the depolarization-evoked Ca(2+) transient was also lower in putative non-nociceptive thigh neurons. More interestingly, while paclitaxel had no detectable influence on either resting or depolarization-evoked Ca(2+) transients in putative non-nociceptive neurons, in putative nociceptive neurons there was a subpopulation-specific decrease in the duration of the evoked Ca(2+) transient that was largely restricted to neurons innervating the glabrous skin. These results suggest that peripheral nerve length alone, does not account for the selective distribution of CIPN symptoms. Rather, they suggest the symptoms of CIPN reflect an interaction between the toxic actions of the therapeutic and unique properties of the neurons deleteriously impacted.

  9. Sensory neuron subpopulation-specific dysregulation of intracellular calcium in a rat model of chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy

    PubMed Central

    Yilmaz, E; Gold, MS

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of the present study was to test the prediction that the unique manifestation of chemotherapeutic-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) would be reflected in a specific pattern of changes in the regulation of the intracellular Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]i) in subpopulations of cutaneous neurons. To test this prediction, we characterized the pattern of changes in mechanical nociceptive threshold associated with paclitaxel administration (2 mg/kg, iv, every other day for four days), as well as the impact of target of innervation and paclitaxel treatment on the regulation of [Ca2+]i in subpopulations of putative nociceptive and non-nociceptive neurons. Neurons innervating the glabrous and hairy skin of the hindpaw as well as the thigh were identified with retrograde tracers, and fura-2 was used to assess changes in [Ca2+]i. Paclitaxel was associated with a persistent decrease in mechanical nociceptive threshold in response to stimuli applied to the glabrous skin of the hindpaw, but not the hairy skin of the hindpaw or the thigh. However, in both putative nociceptive and non-nociceptive neurons, resting [Ca2+]i was significantly lower in neurons innervating the thigh after treatment. The magnitude of the depolarization-evoked Ca2+ transient was also lower in putative non-nociceptive thigh neurons. More interestingly, while paclitaxel had no detectable influence on either resting or depolarization-evoked Ca2+ transients in putative non-nociceptive neurons, in putative nociceptive neurons there was a subpopulation- specific decrease in the duration of the evoked Ca2+ transient that was largely restricted to neurons innervating the glabrous skin. These results suggest that peripheral nerve length alone, does not account for the selective distribution of CIPN symptoms. Rather, they suggest the symptoms of CIPN reflect an interaction between the toxic actions of the therapeutic and unique properties of the neurons deleteriously impacted. PMID:25982563

  10. Prostaglandin E2 potentiates a TTX-resistant sodium current in rat capsaicin-sensitive vagal pulmonary sensory neurones.

    PubMed

    Kwong, Kevin; Lee, Lu-Yuan

    2005-04-15

    Capsaicin-sensitive vagal pulmonary neurones (pulmonary C neurones) play an important role in regulating airway function. During airway inflammation, the level of prostaglandin E(2) (PGE(2)) increases in the lungs and airways. PGE(2) has been shown to sensitize isolated pulmonary C neurones. The somatosensory correlate of the pulmonary C neurone, the small-diameter nociceptive neurone of the dorsal root ganglion, contains a high percentage of tetrodotoxin-resistant sodium currents (TTX-R I(Na)). Therefore, this study was carried out to determine whether these channel currents are involved in the PGE(2)-induced sensitization of pulmonary C neurones. We used the perforated patch-clamp technique to study the effects of PGE(2) on the TTX-R I(Na) in acutely cultured capsaicin-sensitive pulmonary neurones that were identified by retrograde labelling with a fluorescent tracer, DiI. We found that the pulmonary neurones sensitive to capsaicin had a higher percentage of TTX-R I(Na) than that of capsaicin-insensitive pulmonary neurones. PGE(2) exposure increased the evoked TTX-R I(Na) when experiments were performed at both room temperature and at 37 degrees C. Furthermore, stimulation of the adenylyl cyclase/protein kinase A pathway with either forskolin or Sp-5,6-DCl-cBiMPS potentiated the TTX-R I(Na) in a manner similar to that of PGE(2). We conclude that these modulatory effects of PGE(2) on TTX-R I(Na) play an important role in the sensitization of pulmonary C neurones.

  11. 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.

  12. Role of capsaicin-sensitive peripheral sensory neurons in anorexic responses to intravenous infusions of cholecystokinin, peptide YY-(3-36), and glucagon-like peptide-1 in rats.

    PubMed

    Reidelberger, Roger; Haver, Alvin; Anders, Krista; Apenteng, Bettye

    2014-10-15

    Cholecystokinin (CCK)-induced suppression of feeding is mediated by vagal sensory neurons that are destroyed by the neurotoxin capsaicin (CAP). Here we determined whether CAP-sensitive neurons mediate anorexic responses to intravenous infusions of gut hormones peptide YY-(3-36) [PYY-(3-36)] and glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1). Rats received three intraperitoneal injections of CAP or vehicle (VEH) in 24 h. After recovery, non-food-deprived rats received at dark onset a 3-h intravenous infusion of CCK-8 (5, 17 pmol·kg⁻¹·min⁻¹), PYY-(3-36) (5, 17, 50 pmol·kg⁻¹·min⁻¹), or GLP-1 (17, 50 pmol·kg⁻¹·min⁻¹). CCK-8 was much less effective in reducing food intake in CAP vs. VEH rats. CCK-8 at 5 and 17 pmol·kg⁻¹·min⁻¹ reduced food intake during the 3-h infusion period by 39 and 71% in VEH rats and 7 and 18% in CAP rats. In contrast, PYY-(3-36) and GLP-1 were similarly effective in reducing food intake in VEH and CAP rats. PYY-(3-36) at 5, 17, and 50 pmol·kg⁻¹·min⁻¹ reduced food intake during the 3-h infusion period by 15, 33, and 70% in VEH rats and 13, 30, and 33% in CAP rats. GLP-1 at 17 and 50 pmol·kg⁻¹·min⁻¹ reduced food intake during the 3-h infusion period by 48 and 60% in VEH rats and 30 and 52% in CAP rats. These results suggest that anorexic responses to PYY-(3-36) and GLP-1 are not primarily mediated by the CAP-sensitive peripheral sensory neurons (presumably vagal) that mediate CCK-8-induced anorexia.

  13. Functional recovery of neuronal activity in rat whisker-barrel cortex sensory pathway from freezing injury after transplantation of adult bone marrow stromal cells.

    PubMed

    Mori, Kentaro; Iwata, Junko; Miyazaki, Masahiro; Nakao, Yasuaki; Maeda, Minoru

    2005-07-01

    The effect of transplantation of adult bone marrow stromal cells (MSCs) into the freeze-lesioned left barrel field cortex in the rat was investigated by measurement of local cerebral glucose utilization (lCMR(glc)) in the anatomic structures of the whisker-to-barrel cortex sensory pathway. Bone marrow stromal cells or phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) were injected intracerebrally into the boundary zone 1 h after induction of the freezing cortical lesion. Three weeks after surgery, the 2-[(14)C]deoxyglucose method was used to measure lCMR(glc) during right whisker stimulation. The volume of the primary necrotic freezing lesion was significantly reduced (P<0.05), and secondary retrograde degeneration in the left ventral posteromedial (VPM) thalamic nucleus was diminished in the MSC-treated group. Local cerebral glucose utilization measurements showed that the freezing cortical lesion did not alter the metabolic responses to stimulation in the brain stem trigeminal nuclei, but eliminated the responses in the left VPM nucleus and periphery of the barrel cortex in the PBS-treated group. The left/right (stimulated/unstimulated) lCMR(glc) ratios were significantly improved in both the VPM nucleus and periphery of the barrel cortex in the MSC-treated group compared with the PBS-treated group (P<0.05). These results indicate that MSC transplantation in adults may stimulate metabolic and functional recovery in injured neuronal pathways.

  14. Culturing rat hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Audesirk, G; Audesirk, T; Ferguson, C

    2001-01-01

    Cultured neurons are widely used to investigate the mechanisms of neurotoxicity. Embryonic rat hippocampal neurons may be grown as described under a wide variety of conditions to suit differing experimental procedures, including electrophysiology, morphological analysis of neurite development, and various biochemical and molecular analyses.

  15. Expression and properties of hyperpolarization-activated current in rat dorsal root ganglion neurons with known sensory function

    PubMed Central

    Gao, L L; McMullan, S; Djouhri, L; Acosta, C; Harper, A A; Lawson, S N

    2012-01-01

    The hyperpolarization-activated current (Ih) has been implicated in nociception/pain, but its expression levels in nociceptors remained unknown. We recorded Ih magnitude and properties by voltage clamp from dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons in vivo, after classifying them as nociceptive or low-threshold-mechanoreceptors (LTMs) and as having C-, Aδ- or Aα/β-conduction velocities (CVs). For both nociceptors and LTMs, Ih amplitude and Ih density (at −100 mV) were significantly positively correlated with CV. Median Ih magnitudes and Ih density in neuronal subgroups were respectively: muscle spindle afferents (MSAs): −4.6 nA, −33 pA pF−1; cutaneous Aα/β LTMs: −2.2 nA, −20 pA pF−1; Aβ-nociceptors: −2.6 nA, −21 pA pF−1; both Aδ-LTMs and nociceptors: −1.3 nA, ∼−14 pA pF−1; C-LTMs: −0.4 nA, −7.6 pA pF−1; and C-nociceptors: −0.26 nA, −5 pA pF−1. Ih activation slow time constants (slow τ values) were strongly correlated with fast τ values; both were shortest in MSAs. Most neurons had τ values consistent with HCN1-related Ih; others had τ values closer to HCN1+HCN2 channels, or HCN2 in the presence of cAMP. In contrast, median half-activation voltages (V0.5) of −80 to −86 mV for neuronal subgroups suggest contributions of HCN2 to Ih. τ values were unrelated to CV but were inversely correlated with Ih and Ih density for all non-MSA LTMs, and for Aδ-nociceptors. From activation curves ∼2–7% of Ih would be activated at normal membrane potentials. The high Ih may be important for excitability of A-nociceptors (responsible for sharp/pricking-type pain) and Aα/β-LTMs (tactile sensations and proprioception). Underlying HCN expression in these subgroups therefore needs to be determined. Altered Ih expression and/or properties (e.g. in chronic/pathological pain states) may influence both nociceptor and LTM excitability. PMID:22753545

  16. Local knockdown of the NaV1.6 sodium channel reduces pain behaviors, sensory neuron excitability, and sympathetic sprouting in rat models of neuropathic pain

    PubMed Central

    Xie, Wenrui; Strong, Judith A.; Zhang, Jun-Ming

    2015-01-01

    In the spinal nerve ligation model of neuropathic pain, as in other pain models, abnormal spontaneous activity of myelinated sensory neurons occurs early and is essential for establishing pain behaviors and other pathologies. Sympathetic sprouting into the dorsal root ganglion (DRG) is observed after spinal nerve ligation, and sympathectomy reduces pain behavior. Sprouting and spontaneous activity may be mutually reinforcing: blocking neuronal activity reduces sympathetic sprouting, and sympathetic spouts functionally increase spontaneous activity in vitro. However, most studies in this field have used nonspecific methods to block spontaneous activity, methods that also block evoked and normal activity. In this study, we injected small inhibitory RNA directed against the NaV1.6 sodium channel isoform into the DRG before spinal nerve ligation. This isoform can mediate high frequency repetitive firing, like that seen in spontaneously active neurons. Local knockdown of NaV1.6 markedly reduced mechanical pain behaviors induced by spinal nerve ligation, reduced sympathetic sprouting into the ligated sensory ganglion, and blocked abnormal spontaneous activity and other measures of hyperexcitability in myelinated neurons in the ligated sensory ganglion. Immunohistochemical experiments showed that sympathetic sprouting preferentially targeted NaV1.6-positive neurons. Under these experimental conditions, NaV1.6 knockdown did not prevent or strongly alter single evoked action potentials, unlike previous less specific methods used to block spontaneous activity. NaV1.6 knockdown also reduced pain behaviors in another pain model, chronic constriction of the sciatic nerve, provided the model was modified so that the lesion site was relatively close to the siRNA-injected lumbar DRGs. The results highlight the relative importance of abnormal spontaneous activity in establishing both pain behaviors and sympathetic sprouting, and suggest that the NaV1.6 isoform may have value as a

  17. Comparison of sensory tests and neuronal quantity of peripheral nerves between streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic rats and paclitaxel (PAC)-treated rats.

    PubMed

    Jin, Heung Yong; Lee, Na Young; Ko, Hyun A; Lee, Kyung Ae; Park, Tae Sun

    Although diabetic peripheral neuropathy (DPN) and chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) are different disease entities, they share similar neuropathic symptoms that impede quality of life for these patients. Despite having very similar downstream effects, there have been no direct comparisons between DPN and CIPN with respect to symptom severity and therapeutic responses. We compared peripheral nerve damage due to hyperglycemia with that caused by paclitaxel (PAC) treatment as represented by biochemical parameters, diverse sensory tests, and immunohistochemistry of cutaneous and sciatic nerves. The therapeutic effects of alpha-lipoic acid and DA-9801 were also compared in the two models. Animals were divided into seven groups (n = 7-10) as follows: normal, diabetes (DM), DM + alpha-lipoic acid 100 mg/kg (ALA), DM + DA-9801 (100 mg/kg), paclitaxel-treated rat (PAC), PAC + ALA (100 mg/kg), and PAC + DA-9801 (100 mg/kg). The sensory thresholds of animals to mechanical, heat, and pressure stimuli were altered by both hyperglycemia and PAC when compared with controls, and the responses to sensory tests were different between both groups. There were no significant differences in the biochemical markers of blood glutathione between DM and PAC groups (p > .05). Quantitative comparisons of peripheral nerves by intraepidermal nerve fiber density (IENFD) analysis indicated that the DM and PAC groups were similar (6.18 ± 1.03 vs. 5.01 ± 2.57). IENFD was significantly improved after ALA and DA-9801 treatment in diabetic animals (7.6 ± 1.28, 7.7 ± 1.28, respectively, p < .05) but did not reach significance in the PAC-treated groups (6.05 ± 1.76, 5.66 ± 1.26, respectively, p > .05). Sciatic nerves were less damaged in the PAC-treated groups compared with the DM groups with respect to axonal diameter and area (8.60 ± 1.14 μm vs. 6.66 ± 1.07 μm, and 59.04 ± 15.16 μm(2) vs. 35

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. cAMP and cGMP contribute to sensory neuron hyperexcitability and hyperalgesia in rats with dorsal root ganglia compression.

    PubMed

    Song, Xue-Jun; Wang, Zheng-Bei; Gan, Qiang; Walters, Edgar T

    2006-01-01

    Numerous studies have implicated the cAMP-protein kinase A (PKA) pathway in producing hyperexcitability of dorsal root ganglia (DRG) sensory neurons under conditions associated with pain. Evidence is presented for roles of both the cAMP-PKA and cGMP-protein kinase G (PKG) pathways in maintaining neuronal hyperexcitability and behavioral hyperalgesia in a neuropathic pain model: chronic compression of the DRG (CCD treatment). Lumbar DRGs were compressed by a steel rod inserted into the intervertebral foramen. Thermal hyperalgesia was revealed by shortened latencies of foot withdrawal to radiant heat. Intracellular recordings were obtained in vitro from lumbar ganglia after in vivo DRG compression. Activators of the cAMP-PKA pathway, 8-Br-cAMP and Sp-cAMPS, and of the cGMP-PKG pathway, 8-Br-cGMP and Sp-cGMPS, increased the hyperexcitability of DRG neurons already produced by CCD treatment, as shown by further decreases in action potential threshold and increased repetitive discharge during depolarization. The adenylate cyclase inhibitor, SQ22536, the PKA antagonist, Rp-cAMPS, the guanylate cyclase inhibitor, ODQ, and the PKG inhibitor, Rp-8-pCPT-cGMPS, reduced the hyperexcitability of CCD DRG neurons. In vivo application of PKA and PKG antagonists transiently depressed behavioral hyperalgesia induced by CCD treatment. Unexpectedly, application of these agonists and antagonists to ganglia of naïve, uninjured animals had little effect on electrophysiological properties of DRG neurons and no effect on foot withdrawal, suggesting that sensitizing actions of these pathways in the DRG are enabled by prior injury or stress. The only effect observed in uncompressed ganglia was modest depolarization of DRG neurons by PKA and PKG agonists. CCD treatment also depolarized DRG neurons, but CCD-induced depolarization was not affected by agonists or antagonists of these pathways.

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. GluN2B NMDA receptor and excitatory amino acid transporter 3 are upregulated in primary sensory neurons after seven days of morphine administration in rats: implication for opiate-induced hyperalgesia

    PubMed Central

    Gong, Kerui; Bhargava, Aditi; Jasmin, Luc

    2016-01-01

    The contribution of the peripheral nervous system to opiate-induced hyperalgesia (OIH) is not well understood. Here, we determined the changes in excitability of primary sensory neurons after sustained morphine administration for 7 days. Changes in expression of glutamate receptors and glutamate transporters after morphine administration were ascertained in dorsal root ganglions (DRGs). Patch clamp recordings from intact DRGs (ex-vivo preparation) of morphine-treated rats showed increased excitability of small diameter (≤ 30 μm) neurons with respect to rheobase and membrane threshold, whereas the excitability of large diameter (> 30 μm) neurons remained unchanged. Small diameter neurons also displayed increased responses to glutamate, which were mediated mainly by GluN2B containing NMDA receptors (NMDARs), and to a lesser degree by the neuronal excitatory amino acid transporter 3 /excitatory amino acid carrier 1 (EAAT3/EAAC1). Co-administration in vivo of the GluN2B selective antagonist Ro 25-6981 with morphine for 7 days prevented the appearance of OIH and increased morphine-induced analgesia. Administration of morphine for 7 days led to an increased expression of GluN2B and EAAT3/EAAC1, but not of the AMPA, kainate or Group I metabotropic glutamate receptors, or of the vesicular glutamate transporter 2 (VGLUT2). These results suggest that peripheral glutamatergic neurotransmission contributes to OIH and that GluN2B subunit of NMDARs in the periphery may be a target for therapy. PMID:26335908

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. Inflammation of peripheral tissues and injury to peripheral nerves induce differing effects in the expression of the calcium-sensitive N-arachydonoylethanolamine-synthesizing enzyme and related molecules in rat primary sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Sousa-Valente, João; Varga, Angelika; Torres-Perez, Jose Vicente; Jenes, Agnes; Wahba, John; Mackie, Ken; Cravatt, Benjamin; Ueda, Natsuo; Tsuboi, Kazuhito; Santha, Peter; Jancso, Gabor; Tailor, Hiren; Avelino, António; Nagy, Istvan

    2017-06-01

    Elevation of intracellular Ca(2+) concentration induces the synthesis of N-arachydonoylethanolamine (anandamide) in a subpopulation of primary sensory neurons. N-acylphosphatidylethanolamine phospholipase D (NAPE-PLD) is the only known enzyme that synthesizes anandamide in a Ca(2+) -dependent manner. NAPE-PLD mRNA as well as anandamide's main targets, the excitatory transient receptor potential vanilloid type 1 ion channel (TRPV1), the inhibitory cannabinoid type 1 (CB1) receptor, and the main anandamide-hydrolyzing enzyme fatty acid amide hydrolase (FAAH), are all expressed by subpopulations of nociceptive primary sensory neurons. Thus, NAPE-PLD, TRPV1, the CB1 receptor, and FAAH could form an autocrine signaling system that could shape the activity of a major subpopulation of nociceptive primary sensory neurons, contributing to the development of pain. Although the expression patterns of TRPV1, the CB1 receptor, and FAAH have been comprehensively elucidated, little is known about NAPE-PLD expression in primary sensory neurons under physiological and pathological conditions. This study shows that NAPE-PLD is expressed by about one-third of primary sensory neurons, the overwhelming majority of which also express nociceptive markers as well as the CB1 receptor, TRPV1, and FAAH. Inflammation of peripheral tissues and injury to peripheral nerves induce differing but concerted changes in the expression pattern of NAPE-PLD, the CB1 receptor, TRPV1, and FAAH. Together these data indicate the existence of the anatomical basis for an autocrine signaling system in a major proportion of nociceptive primary sensory neurons and that alterations in that autocrine signaling by peripheral pathologies could contribute to the development of both inflammatory and neuropathic pain.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Early bilateral sensory deprivation blocks the development of coincident discharge in rat barrel cortex.

    PubMed

    Ghoshal, Ayan; Pouget, Pierre; Popescu, Maria; Ebner, Ford

    2009-02-25

    Several theories have proposed a functional role for synchronous neuronal firing in generating the neural code of a sensory perception. Synchronous neural activity develops during a critical postnatal period of cortical maturation, and severely reducing neural activity in a sensory pathway during this period could interfere with the development of coincident discharge among cortical neurons. Loss of such synchrony could provide a fundamental mechanism for the degradation of acuity shown in behavioral studies. We tested the hypothesis that synchronous discharge of barrel cortex neurons would fail to develop after sensory deprivation produced by bilateral whisker trimming from birth to postnatal day 60. By studying the correlated discharge of cortical neuron pairs, we found evidence for strong correlated firing in control animals, and this synchrony was almost absent among pairs of cortical barrel neurons in deprived animals. The degree of synchrony impairment was different in subregions of rat barrel cortex. The model that best fits the data is that cortical neurons receiving direct inputs from the primary sensory (lemniscal) pathway show the greatest decrement in synchrony following sensory deprivation, while neurons with diverse inputs from other areas of thalamus and cortex are relatively less affected in this dimension of cortical function.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Adaptation to sensory stimulation in the Rat Barrel Cortex

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heiss, Jaime

    Sustained stimulation of sensory organs results in adaptation of the neuronal response along the sensory pathway. Whether or not cortical adaptation affects equally excitatory and inhibitory inputs is poorly understood. This question was examined using patch recordings of neurons in the barrel cortex of anesthetized rats while repetitively stimulating the principal whisker. After characterizing the excitation and inhibition evoked either by single or double whisker deflection or by different stimulation strengths, it was found that inhibition, unlike excitation, sums linearly and adapts more, causing the balance between these inputs to shift towards excitation. A comparison of the latency of thalamic firing and evoked synaptic inputs in the cortex strongly suggests that adaptation of inhibition results mostly from depression of inhibitory synapses rather than reduction in the firing of inhibitory cells. A similar change in the balance was reproduced by a simple feedforward model. The differential adaptation of the synaptic inputs that shifts the balance toward excitation may act as a gain mechanism which enhances the subthreshold response during sustained stimulation, despite a reduction in excitation. Natural sensory stimulation rarely arrives in an isolated manner, but in a context of several stimulations, like when a rat sweeps its whisker along a surface with a given texture. It was shown that individual single cells sporadically fail to respond, in a very variable fashion from trial to trial. Whether or not adaptation is correlated among neighboring neurons or is it a private, independent phenomenon was investigated by performing simultaneous recordings. Neighboring neurons presented a highly correlated responsiveness to repetitive stimulation, which strongly varied from trial to trial in a synchronized way. Population averages of a single trial obtained by LFP recordings and VSD imaging differed considerably from the time average but was highly correlated to

  17. 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.

  18. Nerve Growth Factor Decreases in Sympathetic and Sensory Nerves of Rats with Chronic Heart Failure

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Jian

    2014-01-01

    Nerve growth factor (NGF) plays a critical role in the maintenance and survival of both sympathetic and sensory nerves. Also, NGF can regulate receptor expression and neuronal activity in the sympathetic and sensory neurons. Abnormalities in NGF regulation are observed in patients and animals with heart failure (HF). Nevertheless, the effects of chronic HF on the levels of NGF within the sympathetic and sensory nerves are not known. Thus, the ELISA method was used to assess the levels of NGF in the stellate ganglion (SG) and dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons of control rats and rats with chronic HF induced by myocardial infarction. Our data show for the first time that the levels of NGF were significantly decreased (P < 0.05) in the SG and DRG neurons 6–20 weeks after ligation of the coronary artery. In addition, a close relation was observed between the NGF levels and the left ventricular function. In conclusion, chronic HF impairs the expression of NGF in the sympathetic and sensory nerves. Given that sensory afferent nerves are engaged in the sympathetic nervous responses to somatic stimulation (i.e. muscle activity during exercise) via a reflex mechanism, our data indicate that NGF is likely responsible for the development of muscle reflex-mediated abnormal sympathetic responsiveness observed in chronic HF. PMID:24913185

  19. 4-Hydroxy-2-nonenal induces mitochondrial dysfunction and aberrant axonal outgrowth in adult sensory neurons that mimics features of diabetic neuropathy.

    PubMed

    Akude, Eli; Zherebitskaya, Elena; Roy Chowdhury, Subir K; Girling, Kimberly; Fernyhough, Paul

    2010-01-01

    Modification of proteins by 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal (4-HNE) has been proposed to cause neurotoxicity in a number of neurodegenerative diseases, including distal axonopathy in diabetic sensory neuropathy. We tested the hypothesis that exposure of cultured adult rat sensory neurons to 4-HNE would result in the formation of amino acid adducts on mitochondrial proteins and that this process would be associated with impaired mitochondrial function and axonal regeneration. In addition, we compared 4-HNE-induced axon pathology with that exhibited by neurons isolated from diabetic rats. Cultured adult rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) sensory neurons were incubated with varying concentrations of 4-HNE. Cell survival, axonal morphology, and level of axon outgrowth were assessed. In addition, video microscopy of live cells, western blot, and immunofluorescent staining were utilized to detect protein adduct formation by 4-HNE and to localize actively respiring mitochondria. 4-HNE induced formation of protein adducts on cytoskeletal and mitochondrial proteins, and impaired axon regeneration by approximately 50% at 3 microM while having no effect on neuronal survival. 4-HNE initiated formation of aberrant axonal structures and caused the accumulation of mitochondria in these dystrophic structures. Neurons treated with 4-HNE exhibited a distal loss of active mitochondria. Finally, the distal axonopathy and the associated aberrant axonal structures generated by 4-HNE treatment mimicked axon pathology observed in DRG sensory neurons isolated from diabetic rats and replicated aspects of neurodegeneration observed in human diabetic sensory neuropathy.

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. Analysis of the variation in use-dependent inactivation of high-threshold tetrodotoxin-resistant sodium currents recorded from rat sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Tripathi, P K; Trujillo, L; Cardenas, C A; Cardenas, C G; de Armendi, A J; Scroggs, R S

    2006-12-28

    This study addressed variation in the use-dependent inactivation (UDI) of high-threshold tetrodotoxin-resistant Na+ currents (TTX-R currents) and action potential firing behavior among acutely isolated rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) cells. UDI was quantified as the percent decrease in current amplitude caused by increasing the current activation rate from 0.1-1.0 Hz for 20 s. TTX-R current UDI varied from 6% to 66% among 122 DRG cells examined, suggesting the existence of two or more levels of UDI. The voltage-dependency of the TTX-R currents was consistent with Na(V)1.8, regardless of UDI. However, TTX-R currents with more UDI had a more negative voltage-dependency of inactivation, a greater tendency to enter slow inactivation, and a slower recovery rate from slow inactivation, compared with those with less UDI. TTX-R currents with more UDI ran down faster than those with less UDI. However, UDI itself changed little over time, regardless of the initial UDI level observed in a particular DRG cell. Together, these two observations suggest that individual DRG cells did not express mixtures of TTX-R channels that varied regarding UDI. TTX-R current UDI was correlated with expression of a low-threshold A-current and whole-cell capacitance, suggesting that it varied among different nociceptor types. Whole-cell inward currents (WCI-currents), recorded without channel blockers, also exhibited UDI. WCI-current UDI varied similarly to TTX-R current UDI in magnitude, and relative to whole-cell capacitance and A-current expression, suggesting that the WCI-currents were carried predominantly by TTX-R channels. DRG cells with more WCI-current UDI exhibited a greater decrease in action potential amplitude and number, and a greater increase in action potential threshold over seven ramp depolarizations, compared with DRG cells with less WCI-current UDI. Variation in UDI of Na(V)1.8 channels expressed by different nociceptor types could contribute to shaping their individual firing

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  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. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. IB4-binding sensory neurons in the adult rat express a novel 3′ UTR-extended isoform of CaMK4 that is associated with its localization to axons

    PubMed Central

    Harrison, Benjamin J.; Flight, Robert M.; Gomes, Cynthia; Venkat, Gayathri; Ellis, Steven R; Sankar, Uma; Twiss, Jeffery L.; Rouchka, Eric C.; Petruska, Jeffrey C.

    2013-01-01

    Calcium/Calmodulin-dependent protein Kinase 4 (Gene and transcript: CaMK4; Protein: CaMKIV) is the nuclear effector of the Ca2+/Calmodulin Kinase (CaMK) pathway where it co-ordinates transcriptional responses. However, CaMKIV is present in the cytoplasm and axons of subpopulations of neurons, including some sensory neurons of the dorsal root ganglia (DRG), suggesting an extra-nuclear role for this protein. We observed that CaMKIV was expressed strongly in the cytoplasm and axons of a subpopulation of small diameter DRG neurons, most likely cutaneous nociceptors by virtue of their binding the isolectin IB4. In IB4+ spinal nerve axons, 20% of CaMKIV was co-localized with the endocytic marker Rab7 in axons that highly expressed CAM-Kinase-Kinase (CAMKK), an upstream activator of CaMKIV, suggesting a role for CaMKIV in signalling though signalling endosomes. Using fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) with riboprobes, we also observed that small diameter neurons expressed high levels of a novel 3' untranslated region (UTR) variant of CaMK4 mRNA. Using rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE), RT-PCR with gene-specific primers, and cDNA sequencing analyses we determined that the novel transcript contains an additional 10kb beyond the annotated gene terminus to a highly conserved alternate poly-adenylation site. qPCR analyses of fluorescent-activated cell sorted (FACS) DRG neurons confirmed that this 3'UTR-extended variant was preferentially expressed in IB4-binding neurons. Computational analyses of the 3'-UTR sequence predict that UTR-extension introduces consensus sites for RNA-binding proteins (RBPs) including the Embryonic Lethal Abnormal Vision (ELAV)/Hu family proteins. We consider the possible implications of axonal CaMKIV in the context of the unique properties of IB4-binding DRG neurons. PMID:23817991

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. Vitamin D deficiency leads to sensory and sympathetic denervation of the rat synovium

    PubMed Central

    Tague, Sarah E.; Smith, Peter G.

    2014-01-01

    Vitamin D deficiency is associated with increased susceptibility to inflammatory arthritis. Sensory and sympathetic synovial nerves are critical to the development of inflammatory arthritis and spontaneously degenerate in the early phases of disease. These nerves contain vitamin D receptors and vitamin D influences nerve growth and neurotrophin expression. We therefore examined the density of synovial nerves and neurotrophin-containing cells in vitamin D deficient rats. Seven week old Sprague Dawley rats were fed either control or vitamin D deficient diets for four weeks. Knee synovium sections extending from patella to meniscus were immunostained for total nerves, myelinated and unmyelinated nerves, sympathetic nerves, peptidergic and non-peptidergic sensory nerves, and neurotrophins and immune cell markers. In control rats, intimal innervation by unmyelinated sensory fibers was denser than subintimal innervation. In contrast, sympathetic innervation was confined to the subintima. Many sensory axons contained markers for both peptidergic and non-peptidergic nerves. NGF was primarily expressed by intimal CD163-negative type B synoviocytes, while neurturin, a ligand selective for non-peptidergic sensory neurons, was expressed by synovial mast cells. In vitamin D deficient rats, there were significant reductions in sensory nerves in the intima and sympathetic nerves in the subintima. While there was no significant change in NGF-immunoreactivity, the number of neurturin-expressing mast cells was significantly reduced in the intima, suggesting that intimal reductions in sensory nerves may be related to reductions in neurturin. Vitamin D deficiency therefore may increase susceptibility to inflammatory arthritis by depleting sensory and sympathetic synovial nerves as a result of reduced synovial neurotrophin content. PMID:25193239

  1. 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.

  2. Sciatic nerve injury induces apoptosis of dorsal root ganglion satellite glial cells and selectively modifies neurosteroidogenesis in sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Schaeffer, Véronique; Meyer, Laurence; Patte-Mensah, Christine; Eckert, Anne; Mensah-Nyagan, Ayikoe G

    2010-01-15

    Neurosteroids are synthesized either by glial cells, by neurons, or within the context of neuron-glia cross-talk. Various studies suggested neurosteroid involvement in the control of neurodegeneration but there is no evidence showing that the natural protection of nerve cells against apoptosis directly depends on their own capacity to produce neuroprotective neurosteroids. Here, we investigated the interactions between neurosteroidogenesis and apoptosis occurring in sensory structures of rats subjected to neuropathic pain generated by sciatic nerve chronic constriction injury (CCI). Using the terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick end labeling (TUNEL), we observed no apoptotic cells in the spinal cord up to 30 days after CCI although pain symptoms such as mechano-allodynia, thermal and mechanical hyperalgesia were evidenced with the Hargreaves's behavioral and von Frey filament tests. In contrast, double-labeling experiments combining TUNEL and immunostaining with antibodies against glutamine synthetase or neuronal nuclei protein revealed apoptosis occurrence in satellite glial cells (SGC) (not in neurons) of CCI rat ipsilateral dorsal root ganglia (DRG) at day 30 after injury. Pulse-chase experiments coupled with high performance liquid chromatography and flow scintillation detection showed that, among numerous biosynthetic pathways converting [(3)H]pregnenolone into various [(3)H]neurosteroids, only [(3)H]estradiol formation was selectively modified and upregulated in DRG of CCI rats. Consistently, immunohistochemical investigations localized aromatase (estradiol-synthesizing enzyme) in DRG neurons but not in SGC. Pharmacological inhibition of aromatase caused apoptosis of CCI rat DRG neurons. Altogether, our results suggest that endogenously produced neurosteroids such as estradiol may be pivotal for the protection of DRG sensory neurons against sciatic nerve CCI-induced apoptosis.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. CaV3.2 T-type calcium channels in peripheral sensory neurons are important for mibefradil-induced reversal of hyperalgesia and allodynia in rats with painful diabetic neuropathy.

    PubMed

    Obradovic, Aleksandar Lj; Hwang, Sung Mi; Scarpa, Joseph; Hong, Sung Jun; Todorovic, Slobodan M; Jevtovic-Todorovic, Vesna

    2014-01-01

    We recently showed that streptozotocin (STZ) injections in rats lead to the development of painful peripheral diabetic neuropathy (PDN) accompanied by enhancement of CaV3.2 T-type calcium currents (T-currents) and hyperexcitability in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons. Here we used the classical peripherally acting T-channel blocker mibefradil to examine the role of CaV3.2 T-channels as pharmacological targets for treatment of painful PDN. When administered intraperitoneally (i.p.), at clinically relevant doses, mibefradil effectively alleviated heat, cold and mechanical hypersensitivities in STZ-treated diabetic rats in a dose-dependent manner. We also found that CaV3.2 antisense (AS)-treated diabetic rats exhibit a significant decrease in painful PDN compared with mismatch antisense (MIS)-treated diabetic rats. Co-treatment with mibefradil (9 mg/kg i.p.) resulted in reversal of heat, cold and mechanical hypersensitivity in MIS-treated but not in AS-treated diabetic rats, suggesting that mibefradil and CaV3.2 AS share the same cellular target. Using patch-clamp recordings from acutely dissociated DRG neurons, we demonstrated that mibefradil similarly blocked T-currents in diabetic and healthy rats in a voltage-dependent manner by stabilizing inactive states of T-channels. We conclude that antihyperalgesic and antiallodynic effects of mibefradil in PDN are at least partly mediated by inhibition of CaV3.2 channels in peripheral nociceptors. Hence, peripherally acting voltage-dependent T-channel blockers could be very useful in the treatment of painful symptoms of PDN.

  10. CaV3.2 T-Type Calcium Channels in Peripheral Sensory Neurons Are Important for Mibefradil-Induced Reversal of Hyperalgesia and Allodynia in Rats with Painful Diabetic Neuropathy

    PubMed Central

    Obradovic, Aleksandar Lj.; Hwang, Sung Mi; Scarpa, Joseph; Hong, Sung Jun; Todorovic, Slobodan M.; Jevtovic-Todorovic, Vesna

    2014-01-01

    We recently showed that streptozotocin (STZ) injections in rats lead to the development of painful peripheral diabetic neuropathy (PDN) accompanied by enhancement of CaV3.2 T-type calcium currents (T-currents) and hyperexcitability in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons. Here we used the classical peripherally acting T-channel blocker mibefradil to examine the role of CaV3.2 T-channels as pharmacological targets for treatment of painful PDN. When administered intraperitoneally (i.p.), at clinically relevant doses, mibefradil effectively alleviated heat, cold and mechanical hypersensitivities in STZ-treated diabetic rats in a dose-dependent manner. We also found that CaV3.2 antisense (AS)-treated diabetic rats exhibit a significant decrease in painful PDN compared with mismatch antisense (MIS)-treated diabetic rats. Co-treatment with mibefradil (9 mg/kg i.p.) resulted in reversal of heat, cold and mechanical hypersensitivity in MIS-treated but not in AS-treated diabetic rats, suggesting that mibefradil and CaV3.2 AS share the same cellular target. Using patch-clamp recordings from acutely dissociated DRG neurons, we demonstrated that mibefradil similarly blocked T-currents in diabetic and healthy rats in a voltage-dependent manner by stabilizing inactive states of T-channels. We conclude that antihyperalgesic and antiallodynic effects of mibefradil in PDN are at least partly mediated by inhibition of CaV3.2 channels in peripheral nociceptors. Hence, peripherally acting voltage-dependent T-channel blockers could be very useful in the treatment of painful symptoms of PDN. PMID:24705276

  11. 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.

  12. Unimodal primary sensory cortices are directly connected by long-range horizontal projections in the rat sensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Stehberg, Jimmy; Dang, Phat T.; Frostig, Ron D.

    2014-01-01

    Research based on functional imaging and neuronal recordings in the barrel cortex subdivision of primary somatosensory cortex (SI) of the adult rat has revealed novel aspects of structure-function relationships in this cortex. Specifically, it has demonstrated that single whisker stimulation evokes subthreshold neuronal activity that spreads symmetrically within gray matter from the appropriate barrel area, crosses cytoarchitectural borders of SI and reaches deeply into other unimodal primary cortices such as primary auditory (AI) and primary visual (VI). It was further demonstrated that this spread is supported by a spatially matching underlying diffuse network of border-crossing, long-range projections that could also reach deeply into AI and VI. Here we seek to determine whether such a network of border-crossing, long-range projections is unique to barrel cortex or characterizes also other primary, unimodal sensory cortices and therefore could directly connect them. Using anterograde (BDA) and retrograde (CTb) tract-tracing techniques, we demonstrate that such diffuse horizontal networks directly and mutually connect VI, AI and SI. These findings suggest that diffuse, border-crossing axonal projections connecting directly primary cortices are an important organizational motif common to all major primary sensory cortices in the rat. Potential implications of these findings for topics including cortical structure-function relationships, multisensory integration, functional imaging, and cortical parcellation are discussed. PMID:25309339

  13. 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

  14. SCN2B in the Rat Trigeminal Ganglion and Trigeminal Sensory Nuclei.

    PubMed

    Shimada, Yusuke; Sato, Tadasu; Yajima, Takehiro; Fujita, Masatoshi; Hashimoto, Naoya; Shoji, Noriaki; Sasano, Takashi; Ichikawa, Hiroyuki

    2016-11-01

    The beta-2 subunit of the mammalian brain voltage-gated sodium channel (SCN2B) was examined in the rat trigeminal ganglion (TG) and trigeminal sensory nuclei. In the TG, 42.6 % of sensory neurons were immunoreactive (IR) for SCN2B. These neurons had various cell body sizes. In facial skins and oral mucosae, corpuscular nerve endings contained SCN2B-immunoreactivity. SCN2B-IR nerve fibers formed nerve plexuses beneath taste buds in the tongue and incisive papilla. However, SCN2B-IR free nerve endings were rare in cutaneous and mucosal epithelia. Tooth pulps, muscle spindles and major salivary glands were also innervated by SCN2B-IR nerve fibers. A double immunofluorescence method revealed that about 40 % of SCN2B-IR neurons exhibited calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP)-immunoreactivity. However, distributions of SCN2B- and CGRP-IR nerve fibers were mostly different in facial, oral and cranial structures. By retrograde tracing method, 60.4 and 85.3 % of TG neurons innervating the facial skin and tooth pulp, respectively, showed SCN2B-immunoreactivity. CGRP-immunoreactivity was co-localized by about 40 % of SCN2B-IR cutaneous and tooth pulp TG neurons. In trigeminal sensory nuclei of the brainstem, SCN2B-IR neuronal cell bodies were common in deep laminae of the subnucleus caudalis, and the subnuclei interpolaris and oralis. In the mesencephalic trigeminal tract nucleus, primary sensory neurons also exhibited SCN2B-immunoreactivity. In other regions of trigeminal sensory nuclei, SCN2B-IR cells were very infrequent. SCN2B-IR neuropil was detected in deep laminae of the subnucleus caudalis as well as in the subnuclei interpolaris, oralis and principalis. These findings suggest that SCN2B is expressed by various types of sensory neurons in the TG. There appears to be SCN2B-containing pathway in the TG and trigeminal sensory nuclei.

  15. Excitatory interneurons dominate sensory processing in the spinal substantia gelatinosa of rat.

    PubMed

    Santos, Sónia F A; Rebelo, Sandra; Derkach, Victor A; Safronov, Boris V

    2007-05-15

    Substantia gelatinosa (SG, lamina II) is a spinal cord region where most unmyelinated primary afferents terminate and the central nociceptive processing begins. It is formed by several distinct groups of interneurons whose functional properties and synaptic connections are poorly understood, in part, because recordings from synaptically coupled pairs of SG neurons are quite challenging due to a very low probability of finding connected cells. Here, we describe an efficient method for identifying synaptically coupled interneurons in rat spinal cord slices and characterizing their excitatory or inhibitory function. Using tight-seal whole-cell recordings and a cell-attached stimulation technique, we routinely tested about 1500 SG interneurons, classifying 102 of them as monosynaptically connected to neurons in lamina I-III. Surprisingly, the vast majority of SG interneurons (n = 87) were excitatory and glutamatergic, while only 15 neurons were inhibitory. According to their intrinsic firing properties, these 102 SG neurons were also classified as tonic (n = 49), adapting (n = 17) or delayed-firing neurons (n = 36). All but two tonic neurons and all adapting neurons were excitatory interneurons. Of 36 delayed-firing neurons, 23 were excitatory and 13 were inhibitory. We conclude that sensory integration in the intrinsic SG neuronal network is dominated by excitatory interneurons. Such organization of neuronal circuitries in the spinal SG can be important for nociceptive encoding.

  16. Excitatory interneurons dominate sensory processing in the spinal substantia gelatinosa of rat

    PubMed Central

    Santos, Sónia F A; Rebelo, Sandra; Derkach, Victor A; Safronov, Boris V

    2007-01-01

    Substantia gelatinosa (SG, lamina II) is a spinal cord region where most unmyelinated primary afferents terminate and the central nociceptive processing begins. It is formed by several distinct groups of interneurons whose functional properties and synaptic connections are poorly understood, in part, because recordings from synaptically coupled pairs of SG neurons are quite challenging due to a very low probability of finding connected cells. Here, we describe an efficient method for identifying synaptically coupled interneurons in rat spinal cord slices and characterizing their excitatory or inhibitory function. Using tight-seal whole-cell recordings and a cell-attached stimulation technique, we routinely tested about 1500 SG interneurons, classifying 102 of them as monosynaptically connected to neurons in lamina I–III. Surprisingly, the vast majority of SG interneurons (n = 87) were excitatory and glutamatergic, while only 15 neurons were inhibitory. According to their intrinsic firing properties, these 102 SG neurons were also classified as tonic (n = 49), adapting (n = 17) or delayed-firing neurons (n = 36). All but two tonic neurons and all adapting neurons were excitatory interneurons. Of 36 delayed-firing neurons, 23 were excitatory and 13 were inhibitory. We conclude that sensory integration in the intrinsic SG neuronal network is dominated by excitatory interneurons. Such organization of neuronal circuitries in the spinal SG can be important for nociceptive encoding. PMID:17331995

  17. Environmental enrichment causes a global potentiation of neuronal responses across stimulus complexity and lamina of sensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Alwis, Dasuni S.; Rajan, Ramesh

    2013-01-01

    Enriched social and physical housing produces many molecular, anatomical, electrophysiological and behavior benefits even in adult animals. Much less is known of its effects on cortical electrophysiology, especially in how sensory cortex encodes the altered environment, and extant studies have generally been restricted to neurons in input laminae in sensory cortex. To extend the understanding of how an enriched environment alters the way in which cortex views the world, we investigated enrichment-induced changes in neuronal encoding of sensory stimuli across all laminae of the rat barrel cortex receiving input from the face whisker tactile system. Animals were housed in Enriched (n = 13) or Isolated housing (n = 13) conditions for 8 weeks before extracellular recordings were obtained from barrel cortex in response to simple whisker deflections and whisker motions modeling movements seen in awake animals undertaking a variety of different tasks. Enrichment resulted in increases in neuronal responses to all stimuli, ranging from those modeling exploratory behavior through to discrimination behaviors. These increases were seen throughout the cortex from supragranular layers through to input Layer 4 and for some stimuli, in infragranular Layer 5. The observed enrichment-induced effect is consistent with the postulate that enrichment causes shift in cortical excitatory/inhibitory balance, and we demonstrate this is greatest in supragranular layers. However, we also report that the effects are non-selective for stimulus parameters across a range of stimuli except for one modeling the likely use of whiskers by the rats in the enriched housing. PMID:23964199

  18. 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

  19. Molecular Correlates of Cortical Network Modulation by Long-Term Sensory Experience in the Adult Rat Barrel Cortex

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vallès, Astrid; Granic, Ivica; De Weerd, Peter; Martens, Gerard J. M.

    2014-01-01

    Modulation of cortical network connectivity is crucial for an adaptive response to experience. In the rat barrel cortex, long-term sensory stimulation induces cortical network modifications and neuronal response changes of which the molecular basis is unknown. Here, we show that long-term somatosensory stimulation by enriched environment…

  20. Sensory responses in the medial prefrontal cortex of anesthetized rats. Implications for sensory processing.

    PubMed

    Martin-Cortecero, Jesus; Nuñez, Angel

    2016-12-17

    The medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) plays a key role in higher functions such as memory and attention. In order to demonstrate sensory responses in the mPFC, we used electrophysiological recordings of urethane-anesthetized rats to record somatosensory-evoked potentials (SEPs) or auditory-evoked potentials (AEPs) elicited by whisker deflections and click stimulation, respectively. Contralateral whisker stimulation or auditory stimuli were also applied to study sensory interference in the mPFC. Interference with other sensory stimuli or recent stimulation history reduced whisker responses in the infralimbic and prelimbic cortices of the ventral mPFC. This effect could be mediated by activation of parvalbumin (PV) interneurons since the effect was blocked by the P/Q calcium channel antagonist ω-agatoxin. In contrast, sensory interference or the recent stimulation history was not detected by the dorsal mPFC or the primary somatosensory cortex. Results obtained from retrograde tracer injections in the dorsal and ventral regions of the mPFC indicated that somatosensory and auditory sensory inputs may arrive at the dorsal mPFC through secondary sensory cortical areas, and through the insular and temporal cortical areas. The ventral mPFC may receive sensory information through the strong anatomical connections between the dorsal and ventral mPFC areas. In conclusion, results suggest mPFC plays an important role in sensory processing, which may have important implications in attentional and memory processes.

  1. 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

  2. Generation of New Neurons in Dorsal Root Ganglia in Adult Rats after Peripheral Nerve Crush Injury

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    The evidence of neurons generated ex novo in sensory ganglia of adult animals is still debated. In the present study, we investigated, using high resolution light microscopy and stereological analysis, the changes in the number of neurons in dorsal root ganglia after 30 days from a crush lesion of the rat brachial plexus terminal branches. Results showed, as expected, a relevant hypertrophy of dorsal root ganglion neurons. In addition, we reported, for the first time in the literature, that neuronal hypertrophy was accompanied by massive neuronal hyperplasia leading to a 42% increase of the number of primary sensory neurons. Moreover, ultrastructural analyses on sensory neurons showed that there was not a relevant neuronal loss as a consequence of the nerve injury. The evidence of BrdU-immunopositive neurons and neural progenitors labeled with Ki67, nanog, nestin, and sox-2 confirmed the stereological evidence of posttraumatic neurogenesis in dorsal root ganglia. Analysis of morphological changes following axonal damage in addition to immunofluorescence characterization of cell phenotype suggested that the neuronal precursors which give rise to the newly generated neurons could be represented by satellite glial cells that actively proliferate after the lesion and are able to differentiate toward the neuronal lineage. PMID:25722894

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. [The distribution of NADPH-diaphorase and neuronal no synthase in rat medulla oblongata nuclei].

    PubMed

    Chertok, V M; Kotsuba, A E

    2013-01-01

    The distribution of nitroxide ergic neurons in the medulla oblongata nuclei in Wistar rats (n = 8) was studied histochemically (NADPH-diaphorase) and using immunohistochemistry with an antiserum against neuronal form of nitric oxide synthase (nNOS). NADPH-diaphorase activity was found in large and small neurons of the sensory, autonomic and motor nuclei. The latter were especially rich in the cells demonstrating the activity of the enzyme. Unlike NADPH-diaphorase, nNOS in the corresponding nuclei was always detected in the fewer number of neurons, predominantly of small sizes. The sensory nuclei (nucleus of solitary tract, reticular parvocellular and lateral nuclei, spinal nucleus of the trigeminal nerve) contained 1.5-3 times more nNOS neurons than in motor nuclei. In some nuclei (nucleus ambiguus, hypoglossal nerve nucleus), containing numerous NADPH-diaphorase-positive neurons, immunoreactive cells were particularly rare.

  12. 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.

  13. Human Induced Pluripotent Cell-Derived Sensory Neurons for Fate Commitment of Bone Marrow-Derived Schwann Cells: Implications for Remyelination Therapy.

    PubMed

    Cai, Sa; Han, Lei; Ao, Qiang; Chan, Ying-Shing; Shum, Daisy Kwok-Yan

    2016-09-14

    : Strategies that exploit induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) to derive neurons have relied on cocktails of cytokines and growth factors to bias cell-signaling events in the course of fate choice. These are often costly and inefficient, involving multiple steps. In this study, we took an alternative approach and selected 5 small-molecule inhibitors of key signaling pathways in an 8-day program to induce differentiation of human iPSCs into sensory neurons, reaching ≥80% yield in terms of marker proteins. Continuing culture in maintenance medium resulted in neuronal networks immunopositive for synaptic vesicle markers and vesicular glutamate transporters suggestive of excitatory neurotransmission. Subpopulations of the derived neurons were electrically excitable, showing tetrodotoxin-sensitive action potentials in patch-clamp experiments. Coculture of the derived neurons with rat Schwann cells under myelinating conditions resulted in upregulated levels of neuronal neuregulin 1 type III in conjunction with the phosphorylated receptors ErbB2 and ErbB3, consistent with amenability of the neuritic network to myelination. As surrogates of embryonic dorsal root ganglia neurons, the derived sensory neurons provided contact-dependent cues to commit bone marrow-derived Schwann cell-like cells to the Schwann cell fate. Our rapid and efficient induction protocol promises not only controlled differentiation of human iPSCs into sensory neurons, but also utility in the translation to a protocol whereby human bone marrow-derived Schwann cells become available for autologous transplantation and remyelination therapy.

  14. 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.

  15. Dose-Dependent Differential Effect of Neurotrophic Factors on In Vitro and In Vivo Regeneration of Motor and Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Santos, Daniel; Gonzalez-Perez, Francisco; Navarro, Xavier

    2016-01-01

    Although peripheral axons can regenerate after nerve transection and repair, functional recovery is usually poor due to inaccurate reinnervation. Neurotrophic factors promote directional guidance to regenerating axons and their selective application may help to improve functional recovery. Hence, we have characterized in organotypic cultures of spinal cord and dorsal root ganglia the effect of GDNF, FGF-2, NGF, NT-3, and BDNF at different concentrations on motor and sensory neurite outgrowth. In vitro results show that GDNF and FGF-2 enhanced both motor and sensory neurite outgrowth, NGF and NT-3 were the most selective to enhance sensory neurite outgrowth, and high doses of BDNF selectively enhanced motor neurite outgrowth. Then, NGF, NT-3, and BDNF (as the most selective factors) were delivered in a collagen matrix within a silicone tube to repair the severed sciatic nerve of rats. Quantification of Fluorogold retrolabeled neurons showed that NGF and NT-3 did not show preferential effect on sensory regeneration whereas BDNF preferentially promoted motor axons regeneration. Therefore, the selective effects of NGF and NT-3 shown in vitro are lost when they are applied in vivo, but a high dose of BDNF is able to selectively enhance motor neuron regeneration both in vitro and in vivo. PMID:27867665

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Acute inhalation toxicity and sensory irritation of dimethylamine. [Rats, mice

    SciTech Connect

    Steinhagen, W.H.; Swenberg, J.A.; Barrow, C.S.

    1982-06-01

    The sensory irritation potential of dimethylamine (DMA) inhalation on male Fischer-344 rats and male Swiss-Webster mice was evaluated by measuring the reflex decrease in respiratory rate. In addition, the six hour LC/sub 50/ for rats exposed to dimetylamine was established. Groups of 3 or 4 rats and mice were exposed for 10 minutes to concentrations of DMA ranging from 49 to 1576 ppm during which time the respiratory rate was monitored and recorded. Sensory irritation concentration-response curves were obtained and RD/sub 50/ values (concentration which elicits a 50% decrease in respiratory rate) were determined to be 573 and 511 ppm for rats and mice, respectively. In another set of experiments seven groups of male rats were exposed to concentrations of DMA ranging from 600 to 6119 ppm for six hours. Mortality counts were made during and for 48 hours post exposure. The six hour LC/sub 50/ was determined to be 4540 ppm. Histopathologic examination of the respiratory tract revealed concentration related changes ranging from ulceration and necrosis to rhinitis, tracheitis, and emphysema. Overall, DMA was found to be less potent as a sensory irritant than other airborne irritants.

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. [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.

  14. 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

  15. Calretinin Neurons in the Rat Suprachiasmatic Nucleus.

    PubMed

    Moore, Robert Y

    2016-08-01

    The hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN), a circadian pacemaker, is present in all mammalian brains. It has a complex organization of peptide-containing neurons that is similar among species, but calcium-binding proteins are expressed variably. Neurons containing calretinin have been described in the SCN in a number of species but not with association to circadian function. The objective of the present study is to characterize a calretinin neuron (CAR) group in the rat anterior hypothalamus anatomically and functionally with a detailed description of its location and a quantitative analysis of neuronal calretinin immunoreactivity at 3 times of day, 0600, 1400, and 1900 h, from animals in either light-dark or constant dark conditions. CAR neurons occupy a region in the dorsal and lateral SCN with a circadian rhythm in CAR immunoreactivity with a peak at 0600 h and a rhythm in cytoplasmic CAR distribution with a peak at 1400 h. CAR neurons should be viewed as an anatomical and functional component of the rat SCN that expands the definition from observations with cell stains. CAR neurons are likely to modulate temporal regulation of calcium in synaptic transmission.

  16. 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.

  17. Acetaminophen Induces Apoptosis in Rat Cortical Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Posadas, Inmaculada; Santos, Pablo; Blanco, Almudena; Muñoz-Fernández, Maríangeles; Ceña, Valentín

    2010-01-01

    Background Acetaminophen (AAP) is widely prescribed for treatment of mild pain and fever in western countries. It is generally considered a safe drug and the most frequently reported adverse effect associated with acetaminophen is hepatotoxicity, which generally occurs after acute overdose. During AAP overdose, encephalopathy might develop and contribute to morbidity and mortality. Our hypothesis is that AAP causes direct neuronal toxicity contributing to the general AAP toxicity syndrome. Methodology/Principal Findings We report that AAP causes direct toxicity on rat cortical neurons both in vitro and in vivo as measured by LDH release. We have found that AAP causes concentration-dependent neuronal death in vitro at concentrations (1 and 2 mM) that are reached in human plasma during AAP overdose, and that are also reached in the cerebrospinal fluid of rats for 3 hours following i.p injection of AAP doses (250 and 500 mg/Kg) that are below those required to induce acute hepatic failure in rats. AAP also increases both neuronal cytochrome P450 isoform CYP2E1 enzymatic activity and protein levels as determined by Western blot, leading to neuronal death through mitochondrial–mediated mechanisms that involve cytochrome c release and caspase 3 activation. In addition, in vivo experiments show that i.p. AAP (250 and 500 mg/Kg) injection induces neuronal death in the rat cortex as measured by TUNEL, validating the in vitro data. Conclusions/Significance The data presented here establish, for the first time, a direct neurotoxic action by AAP both in vivo and in vitro in rats at doses below those required to produce hepatotoxicity and suggest that this neurotoxicity might be involved in the general toxic syndrome observed during patient APP overdose and, possibly, also when AAP doses in the upper dosing schedule are used, especially if other risk factors (moderate drinking, fasting, nutritional impairment) are present. PMID:21170329

  18. 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

  19. The Cancer Chemotherapeutic Paclitaxel Increases Human and Rodent Sensory Neuron Responses to TRPV1 by Activation of TLR4

    PubMed Central

    Li, Yan; Adamek, Pavel; Zhang, Haijun; Tatsui, Claudio Esteves; Rhines, Laurence D.; Mrozkova, Petra; Li, Qin; Kosturakis, Alyssa K.; Cassidy, Ryan M.; Harrison, Daniel S.; Cata, Juan P.; Sapire, Kenneth; Zhang, Hongmei; Kennamer-Chapman, Ross M.; Jawad, Abdul Basit; Ghetti, Andre; Yan, Jiusheng; Palecek, Jiri

    2015-01-01

    Peripheral neuropathy is dose limiting in paclitaxel cancer chemotherapy and can result in both acute pain during treatment and chronic persistent pain in cancer survivors. The hypothesis tested was that paclitaxel produces these adverse effects at least in part by sensitizing transient receptor potential vanilloid subtype 1 (TRPV1) through Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) signaling. The data show that paclitaxel-induced behavioral hypersensitivity is prevented and reversed by spinal administration of a TRPV1 antagonist. The number of TRPV1+ neurons is increased in the dorsal root ganglia (DRG) in paclitaxel-treated rats and is colocalized with TLR4 in rat and human DRG neurons. Cotreatment of rats with lipopolysaccharide from the photosynthetic bacterium Rhodobacter sphaeroides (LPS-RS), a TLR4 inhibitor, prevents the increase in numbers of TRPV1+ neurons by paclitaxel treatment. Perfusion of paclitaxel or the archetypal TLR4 agonist LPS activated both rat DRG and spinal neurons directly and produced acute sensitization of TRPV1 in both groups of cells via a TLR4-mediated mechanism. Paclitaxel and LPS sensitize TRPV1 in HEK293 cells stably expressing human TLR4 and transiently expressing human TRPV1. These physiological effects also are prevented by LPS-RS. Finally, paclitaxel activates and sensitizes TRPV1 responses directly in dissociated human DRG neurons. In summary, TLR4 was activated by paclitaxel and led to sensitization of TRPV1. This mechanism could contribute to paclitaxel-induced acute pain and chronic painful neuropathy. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT In this original work, it is shown for the first time that paclitaxel activates peripheral sensory and spinal neurons directly and sensitizes these cells to transient receptor potential vanilloid subtype 1 (TRPV1)-mediated capsaicin responses via Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) in multiple species. A direct functional interaction between TLR4 and TRPV1 is shown in rat and human dorsal root ganglion neurons, TLR4/TRPV1

  20. 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

  1. Ciliary neurotrophic factor activates NF-κB to enhance mitochondrial bioenergetics and prevent neuropathy in sensory neurons of streptozotocin-induced diabetic rodents.

    PubMed

    Saleh, Ali; Roy Chowdhury, Subir K; Smith, Darrell R; Balakrishnan, Savitha; Tessler, Lori; Martens, Corina; Morrow, Dwane; Schartner, Emily; Frizzi, Katie E; Calcutt, Nigel A; Fernyhough, Paul

    2013-02-01

    Diabetes causes mitochondrial dysfunction in sensory neurons that may contribute to peripheral neuropathy. Ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) promotes sensory neuron survival and axon regeneration and prevents axonal dwindling, nerve conduction deficits and thermal hypoalgesia in diabetic rats. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that CNTF protects sensory neuron function during diabetes through normalization of impaired mitochondrial bioenergetics. In addition, we investigated whether the NF-κB signal transduction pathway was mobilized by CNTF. Neurite outgrowth of sensory neurons derived from streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic rats was reduced compared to neurons from control rats and exposure to CNTF for 24 h enhanced neurite outgrowth. CNTF also activated NF-κB, as assessed by Western blotting for the NF-κB p50 subunit and reporter assays for NF-κB promoter activity. Conversely, blockade of NF-κB signaling using SN50 peptide inhibited CNTF-mediated neurite outgrowth. Studies in mice with STZ-induced diabetes demonstrated that systemic therapy with CNTF prevented functional indices of peripheral neuropathy along with deficiencies in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) NF-κB p50 expression and DNA binding activity. DRG neurons derived from STZ-diabetic mice also exhibited deficiencies in maximal oxygen consumption rate and associated spare respiratory capacity that were corrected by exposure to CNTF for 24 h in an NF-κB-dependent manner. We propose that the ability of CNTF to enhance axon regeneration and protect peripheral nerve from structural and functional indices of diabetic peripheral neuropathy is associated with targeting of mitochondrial function, in part via NF-κB activation, and improvement of cellular bioenergetics.

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. Distribution of binding sites for the plant lectin Ulex europaeus agglutinin I on primary sensory neurones in seven different mammalian species.

    PubMed

    Gerke, Michelle B; Plenderleith, Mark B

    2002-01-01

    There is an increasing body of evidence to suggest that different functional classes of neurones express characteristic cell-surface carbohydrates. Previous studies have shown that the plant lectin Ulex europaeus agglutinin-I (UEA) binds to a population of small to medium diameter primary sensory neurones in rabbits and humans. This suggests that a fucose-containing glycoconjugate may be expressed by nociceptive primary sensory neurones. In order to determine the extent to which this glycoconjugate is expressed by other species, in the current study, we have examined the distribution of UEA-binding sites on primary sensory neurones in seven different mammals. Binding sites for UEA were associated with the plasma membrane and cytoplasmic granules of small to medium dorsal root ganglion cells and their axon terminals in laminae I-III of the grey matter of the spinal cord, in the rabbit, cat and marmoset monkey. However, no binding was observed in either the dorsal root ganglia or spinal cord in the mouse, rat, guinea pig or flying fox. These results indicate an inter-species variation in the expression of cell-surface glycoconjugates on mammalian primary sensory neurones.

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. Increased susceptibility of gastric mucosa to ulcerogenic stimulation in diabetic rats–role of capsaicin-sensitive sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Tashima, Kimihito; Korolkiewicz, Roman; Kubomi, Masafumi; Takeuchi, Koji

    1998-01-01

    We examined the gastric mucosal blood flow (GMBF) and ulcerogenic responses following barrier disruption induced by sodium taurocholate (TC) in diabetic rats and investigated the role of capsaicin-sensitive sensory neurons in these responses.Animals were injected streptozotocin (STZ: 70 mg kg−1, i.p.) and used after 5, 10 and 15 weeks of diabetes with blood glucose levels of >350 mg dl−1. The stomach was mounted on an ex-vivo chamber under urethane anaesthesia and exposed to 20 mM TC plus 50 mM HCl for 30 min in the presence of omeprazole. Gastric transmucosal potential difference (PD), GMBF, and luminal acid loss (H+ back-diffusion) were measured before and after exposure to 20 mM TC, and the mucosa was examined for lesions 90 min after TC treatment.Mucosal application of TC caused PD reduction in all groups; the degree of PD reduction was similar between normal and diabetic rats, although basal PD values were lower in diabetic rats. In normal rats, TC treatment caused luminal acid loss, followed by an increase of GMBF, resulting in minimal damage in the mucosa.The increased GMBF responses associated with H+ back-diffusion were mitigated in STZ-treated rats, depending on the duration of diabetes, and severe haemorrhagic lesions occurred in the stomach after 10 weeks of diabetes.Intragastric application of capsaicin increased GMBF in normal rats, but such responses were mitigated in STZ diabetic rats. The amount of CGRP released in the isolated stomach in response to capsaicin was significantly lower in diabetic rats when compared to controls.The deleterious influences on GMBF and mucosal ulcerogenic responses in STZ-diabetic rats were partially but significantly antagonized by daily insulin (4 units rat−1) treatment.These results suggest that the gastric mucosa of diabetic rats is more vulnerable to acid injury following barrier disruption, and this change is insulin-sensitive and may be partly accounted for by the impairment of GMBF

  9. Development of sensory motor reflexes in 2 G exposed rats.

    PubMed

    Wubbels, Réne; Bouët, Valentine; de Jong, Herman; Gramsbergen, Albert

    2004-07-01

    During gestation and early postnatal development, the animal's size and weight rapidly increase. Within that period, gravity affects sensory and motor development. We studied age-dependent modifications of several types of motor reflexes in 5 groups of rats conceived, born and reared in hypergravity (HG; 2 g). These rats were transferred to normal gravity (NG; 1 g) at various postnatal days, and their behavioral reflexes were compared with a control group which was constantly kept under NG. HG induced a retarded development of vestibular dependent reflexes. Other types of motor behavior were not delayed.

  10. The Upregulation of α2δ-1 Subunit Modulates Activity-Dependent Ca2+ Signals in Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Margas, Wojciech; Cassidy, John S.

    2015-01-01

    As auxiliary subunits of voltage-gated Ca2+ channels, the α2δ proteins modulate membrane trafficking of the channels and their localization to specific presynaptic sites. Following nerve injury, upregulation of the α2δ-1 subunit in sensory dorsal root ganglion neurons contributes to the generation of chronic pain states; however, very little is known about the underlying molecular mechanisms. Here we show that the increased expression of α2δ-1 in rat sensory neurons leads to prolonged Ca2+ responses evoked by membrane depolarization. This mechanism is coupled to CaV2.2 channel-mediated responses, as it is blocked by a ω-conotoxin GVIA application. Once initiated, the prolonged Ca2+ transients are not dependent on extracellular Ca2+ and do not require Ca2+ release from the endoplasmic reticulum. The selective inhibition of mitochondrial Ca2+ uptake demonstrates that α2δ-1-mediated prolonged Ca2+ signals are buffered by mitochondria, preferentially activated by Ca2+ influx through CaV2.2 channels. Thus, by controlling channel abundance at the plasma membrane, the α2δ-1 subunit has a major impact on the organization of depolarization-induced intracellular Ca2+ signaling in dorsal root ganglion neurons. PMID:25878262

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. Inhibition of the plasma membrane Ca2+ pump by CD44 receptor activation of tyrosine kinases increases the action potential afterhyperpolarization in sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Ghosh, Biswarup; Li, Yan; Thayer, Stanley A

    2011-02-16

    The cytoplasmic Ca(2+) clearance rate affects neuronal excitability, plasticity, and synaptic transmission. Here, we examined the modulation of the plasma membrane Ca(2+) ATPase (PMCA) by tyrosine kinases. In rat sensory neurons grown in culture, the PMCA was under tonic inhibition by a member of the Src family of tyrosine kinases (SFKs). Ca(2+) clearance accelerated in the presence of selective tyrosine kinase inhibitors. Tonic inhibition of the PMCA was attenuated in cells expressing a dominant-negative construct or shRNA directed to message for the SFKs Lck or Fyn, but not Src. SFKs did not appear to phosphorylate the PMCA directly but instead activated focal adhesion kinase (FAK). Expression of constitutively active FAK enhanced and dominant-negative or shRNA knockdown of FAK attenuated tonic inhibition. Antisense knockdown of PMCA isoform 4 removed tonic inhibition of Ca(2+) clearance, indicating that FAK acts on PMCA4. The hyaluronan receptor CD44 activates SFK-FAK signaling cascades and is expressed in sensory neurons. Treating neurons with a CD44-blocking antibody or short hyaluronan oligosaccharides, which are produced during injury and displace macromolecular hyaluronan from CD44, attenuated tonic PMCA inhibition. Ca(2+)-activated K(+) channels mediate a slow afterhyperpolarization in sensory neurons that was inhibited by tyrosine kinase inhibitors and enhanced by knockdown of PMCA4. Thus, we describe a novel kinase cascade in sensory neurons that enables the extracellular matrix to alter Ca(2+) signals by modulating PMCA-mediated Ca(2+) clearance. This signaling pathway may influence the excitability of sensory neurons following injury.

  15. 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.

  16. Dynamics of Population Activity in Rat Sensory Cortex: Network Correlations Predict Anatomical Arrangement and Information Content

    PubMed Central

    Sabri, Mohammad Mahdi; Adibi, Mehdi; Arabzadeh, Ehsan

    2016-01-01

    To study the spatiotemporal dynamics of neural activity in a cortical population, we implanted a 10 × 10 microelectrode array in the vibrissal cortex of urethane-anesthetized rats. We recorded spontaneous neuronal activity as well as activity evoked in response to sustained and brief sensory stimulation. To quantify the temporal dynamics of activity, we computed the probability distribution function (PDF) of spiking on one electrode given the observation of a spike on another. The spike-triggered PDFs quantified the strength, temporal delay, and temporal precision of correlated activity across electrodes. Nearby cells showed higher levels of correlation at short delays, whereas distant cells showed lower levels of correlation, which tended to occur at longer delays. We found that functional space built based on the strength of pairwise correlations predicted the anatomical arrangement of electrodes. Moreover, the correlation profile of electrode pairs during spontaneous activity predicted the “signal” and “noise” correlations during sensory stimulation. Finally, mutual information analyses revealed that neurons with stronger correlations to the network during spontaneous activity, conveyed higher information about the sensory stimuli in their evoked response. Given the 400-μm-distance between adjacent electrodes, our functional quantifications unravel the spatiotemporal dynamics of activity among nearby and distant cortical columns. PMID:27458347

  17. 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

  18. Molecular correlates of cortical network modulation by long-term sensory experience in the adult rat barrel cortex

    PubMed Central

    Vallès, Astrid; Granic, Ivica; De Weerd, Peter; Martens, Gerard J.M.

    2014-01-01

    Modulation of cortical network connectivity is crucial for an adaptive response to experience. In the rat barrel cortex, long-term sensory stimulation induces cortical network modifications and neuronal response changes of which the molecular basis is unknown. Here, we show that long-term somatosensory stimulation by enriched environment up-regulates cortical expression of neuropeptide mRNAs and down-regulates immediate-early gene (IEG) mRNAs specifically in the barrel cortex, and not in other brain regions. The present data suggest a central role of neuropeptides in the fine-tuning of sensory cortical circuits by long-term experience. PMID:25171421

  19. Synaptobrevin I mediates exocytosis of CGRP from sensory neurons and inhibition by botulinum toxins reflects their anti-nociceptive potential.

    PubMed

    Meng, Jianghui; Wang, Jiafu; Lawrence, Gary; Dolly, J Oliver

    2007-08-15

    Calcitonin-gene-related peptide (CGRP), a potent vasodilator that mediates inflammatory pain, is elevated in migraine; nevertheless, little is known about its release from sensory neurons. In this study, CGRP was found to occur in the majority of neurons from rat trigeminal ganglia, together with the three exocytotic SNAREs [SNAP25, syntaxin 1 and the synaptobrevin (Sbr, also known as VAMP) isoforms] and synaptotagmin. Ca(2+)-dependent CGRP release was evoked with K(+)-depolarisation and, to lower levels, by capsaicin or bradykinin from neurons that contain the vanilloid receptor 1 and/or bradykinin receptor 2. Botulinum neurotoxin (BoNT) type A cleaved SNAP25 and inhibited release triggered by K(+) > bradykinin > capsaicin. Unlike BoNT type D, BoNT type B did not affect exocytosis, even though the neurons possess its receptor and Sbr II and Sbr III got proteolysed (I is resistant in rat) but, in mouse neurons, it additionally cleaved Sbr I and blocked transmitter release. Sbr I and II were found in CGRP-containing vesicles, and each was shown to separately form a SNARE complex. These new findings, together with punctate staining of Sbr I and CGRP in neurites, implicate isoform Sbr I in exocytosis from large dense-core vesicles together with SNAP25 (also, probably, syntaxin 1 because BoNT type C1 caused partial cleavage and inhibition); this differs from Sbr-II-dependent release of transmitters from small synaptic vesicles. Such use of particular Sbr isoform(s) by different neurons raises the functional implications for other cells previously unrecognised.

  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. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. Informational basis of sensory adaptation: entropy and single-spike efficiency in rat barrel cortex.

    PubMed

    Adibi, Mehdi; Clifford, Colin W G; Arabzadeh, Ehsan

    2013-09-11

    We showed recently that exposure to whisker vibrations enhances coding efficiency in rat barrel cortex despite increasing correlations in variability (Adibi et al., 2013). Here, to understand how adaptation achieves this improvement in sensory representation, we decomposed the stimulus information carried in neuronal population activity into its fundamental components in the framework of information theory. In the context of sensory coding, these components are the entropy of the responses across the entire stimulus set (response entropy) and the entropy of the responses conditional on the stimulus (conditional response entropy). We found that adaptation decreased response entropy and conditional response entropy at both the level of single neurons and the pooled activity of neuronal populations. However, the net effect of adaptation was to increase the mutual information because the drop in the conditional entropy outweighed the drop in the response entropy. The information transmitted by a single spike also increased under adaptation. As population size increased, the information content of individual spikes declined but the relative improvement attributable to adaptation was maintained.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. T-type calcium channels cause bursts of spikes in motor but not sensory thalamic neurons during mimicry of natural patterns of synaptic input.

    PubMed

    Kim, Haram R; Hong, Su Z; Fiorillo, Christopher D

    2015-01-01

    Although neurons within intact nervous systems can be classified as 'sensory' or 'motor,' it is not known whether there is any general distinction between sensory and motor neurons at the cellular or molecular levels. Here, we extend and test a theory according to which activation of certain subtypes of voltage-gated ion channel (VGC) generate patterns of spikes in neurons of motor systems, whereas VGC are proposed to counteract patterns in sensory neurons. We previously reported experimental evidence for the theory from visual thalamus, where we found that T-type calcium channels (TtCCs) did not cause bursts of spikes but instead served the function of 'predictive homeostasis' to maximize the causal and informational link between retinogeniculate excitation and spike output. Here, we have recorded neurons in brain slices from eight sensory and motor regions of rat thalamus while mimicking key features of natural excitatory and inhibitory post-synaptic potentials. As predicted by theory, TtCC did cause bursts of spikes in motor thalamus. TtCC-mediated responses in motor thalamus were activated at more hyperpolarized potentials and caused larger depolarizations with more spikes than in visual and auditory thalamus. Somatosensory thalamus is known to be more closely connected to motor regions relative to auditory and visual thalamus, and likewise the strength of its TtCC responses was intermediate between these regions and motor thalamus. We also observed lower input resistance, as well as limited evidence of stronger hyperpolarization-induced ('H-type') depolarization, in nuclei closer to motor output. These findings support our theory of a specific difference between sensory and motor neurons at the cellular level.

  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. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. 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

  2. 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

  3. Human Induced Pluripotent Cell-Derived Sensory Neurons for Fate Commitment of Bone Marrow-Derived Schwann Cells: Implications for Remyelination Therapy.

    PubMed

    Cai, Sa; Han, Lei; Ao, Qiang; Chan, Ying-Shing; Shum, Daisy Kwok-Yan

    2017-02-01

    Strategies that exploit induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) to derive neurons have relied on cocktails of cytokines and growth factors to bias cell-signaling events in the course of fate choice. These are often costly and inefficient, involving multiple steps. In this study, we took an alternative approach and selected 5 small-molecule inhibitors of key signaling pathways in an 8-day program to induce differentiation of human iPSCs into sensory neurons, reaching ≥80% yield in terms of marker proteins. Continuing culture in maintenance medium resulted in neuronal networks immunopositive for synaptic vesicle markers and vesicular glutamate transporters suggestive of excitatory neurotransmission. Subpopulations of the derived neurons were electrically excitable, showing tetrodotoxin-sensitive action potentials in patch-clamp experiments. Coculture of the derived neurons with rat Schwann cells under myelinating conditions resulted in upregulated levels of neuronal neuregulin 1 type III in conjunction with the phosphorylated receptors ErbB2 and ErbB3, consistent with amenability of the neuritic network to myelination. As surrogates of embryonic dorsal root ganglia neurons, the derived sensory neurons provided contact-dependent cues to commit bone marrow-derived Schwann cell-like cells to the Schwann cell fate. Our rapid and efficient induction protocol promises not only controlled differentiation of human iPSCs into sensory neurons, but also utility in the translation to a protocol whereby human bone marrow-derived Schwann cells become available for autologous transplantation and remyelination therapy. Stem Cells Translational Medicine 2017;6:369-381.

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. THE NEURONAL DISTRIBUTION OF CANNABINOID RECEPTOR TYPE 1 IN THE TRIGEMINAL GANGLION OF THE RAT

    PubMed Central

    PRICE, T. J.; HELESIC, G.; PARGHI, D.; HARGREAVES, K. M.; FLORES, C. M.

    2007-01-01

    Cannabinoid compounds have been shown to produce antinociception and antihyperalgesia by acting upon cannabinoid receptors located in both the CNS and the periphery. A potential mechanism by which cannabinoids could inhibit nociception in the periphery is the activation of cannabinoid receptors located on one or more classes of primary nociceptive neurons. To address this hypothesis, we evaluated the neuronal distribution of cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1) in the trigeminal ganglion (TG) of the adult rat through combined in situ hybridization (ISH) and immunohistochemistry (IHC). CB1 receptor mRNA was localized mainly to medium and large diameter neurons of the maxillary and mandibular branches of the TG. Consistent with this distribution, in a de facto nociceptive sensory neuron population that exhibited vanilloid receptor type 1 immunoreactivity, colocalization with CB1 mRNA was also sparse (<5%). Furthermore, very few neurons (approximately 5%) in the peptidergic (defined as calcitonin gene-related peptide- or substance P-immunoreactive) or the isolectin B4-binding sensory neuron populations contained CB1 mRNA. In contrast, and consistent with the neuron-size distribution for CB1, nearly 75% of CB1-positive neurons exhibited N52-immunoreactivity, a marker of myelinated axons. These results indicate that in the rat TG, CB1 receptors are expressed predominantly in neurons that are not thought to subserve nociceptive neurotransmission in the noninjured animal. Taken together with the absence of an above background in situ signal for CB2 mRNA in TG neurons, these findings suggest that the peripherally mediated antinociceptive effects of cannabinoids may involve either as yet unidentified receptors or interaction with afferent neuron populations that normally subserve non-nociceptive functions. PMID:12849749

  9. Correlation between Cortical State and Locus Coeruleus Activity: Implications for Sensory Coding in Rat Barrel Cortex

    PubMed Central

    Fazlali, Zeinab; Ranjbar-Slamloo, Yadollah; Adibi, Mehdi; Arabzadeh, Ehsan

    2016-01-01

    Cortical state modulates the background activity of cortical neurons, and their evoked response to sensory stimulation. Multiple mechanisms are involved in switching between cortical states including various neuromodulatory systems. Locus Coeruleus (LC) is one of the major neuromodulatory nuclei in the brainstem with widespread projections throughout the brain and modulates the activity of cells and networks. Here, we quantified the link between the LC spontaneous activity, cortical state and sensory processing in the rat vibrissal somatosensory “barrel” cortex (BC). We simultaneously recorded unit activity from LC and BC along with prefrontal electroencephalogram (EEG) while presenting brief whisker deflections under urethane anesthesia. The ratio of low to high frequency components of EEG (referred to as the L/H ratio) was employed to identify cortical state. We found that the spontaneous activity of LC units exhibited a negative correlation with the L/H ratio. Cross-correlation analysis revealed that changes in LC firing preceded changes in the cortical state: the correlation of the LC firing profile with the L/H ratio was maximal at an average lag of −1.2 s. We further quantified BC neuronal responses to whisker stimulation during the synchronized and desynchronized states. In the desynchronized state, BC neurons showed lower stimulus detection threshold, higher response fidelity, and shorter response latency. The most prominent change was observed in the late phase of BC evoked activity (100–400 ms post stimulus onset): almost every BC unit exhibited a greater late response during the desynchronized state. Categorization of the BC evoked responses based on LC activity (into high and low LC discharge rates) resulted in highly similar response profiles compared to categorization based on the cortical state (low and high L/H ratios). These findings provide evidence for the involvement of the LC neuromodulatory system in desynchronization of cortical state

  10. 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

  11. Phasic and Tonic Patterns of Locus Coeruleus Output Differentially Modulate Sensory Network Function in the Awake Rat

    PubMed Central

    Waterhouse, Barry D.

    2011-01-01

    Neurons of the nucleus locus coeruleus (LC) discharge with phasic bursts of activity superimposed on highly regular tonic discharge rates. Phasic bursts are elicited by bottom-up input mechanisms involving novel/salient sensory stimuli and top-down decision making processes; whereas tonic rates largely fluctuate according to arousal levels and behavioral states. Although it is generally believed that these two modes of activity differentially modulate information processing in LC targets, the unique role of phasic versus tonic LC output on signal processing in cells, circuits, and neural networks of waking animals is not well understood. In the current study, simultaneous recordings of individual neurons within ventral posterior medial thalamus and barrel field cortex of conscious rats provided evidence that each mode of LC output produces a unique modulatory impact on single neuron responsiveness to sensory-driven synaptic input and representations of sensory information across ensembles of simultaneously recorded cells. Each mode of LC activation specifically modulated the relationship between sensory-stimulus intensity and the subsequent responses of individual neurons and neural ensembles. Overall these results indicate that phasic versus tonic modes of LC discharge exert fundamentally different modulatory effects on target neuronal circuits within the rodent trigeminal somatosensory system. As such, each mode of LC output may differentially influence signal processing as a means of optimizing behaviorally relevant neural computations within this sensory network. Likely the ability of the LC system to differentially regulate neural responses and local circuit operations according to behavioral demands extends to other brain regions including those involved in higher cognitive functions. PMID:20980542

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. Sound sensitivity of neurons in rat hippocampus during performance of a sound-guided task.

    PubMed

    Itskov, Pavel M; Vinnik, Ekaterina; Honey, Christian; Schnupp, Jan; Diamond, Mathew E

    2012-04-01

    To investigate how hippocampal neurons encode sound stimuli, and the conjunction of sound stimuli with the animal's position in space, we recorded from neurons in the CA1 region of hippocampus in rats while they performed a sound discrimination task. Four different sounds were used, two associated with water reward on the right side of the animal and the other two with water reward on the left side. This allowed us to separate neuronal activity related to sound identity from activity related to response direction. To test the effect of spatial context on sound coding, we trained rats to carry out the task on two identical testing platforms at different locations in the same room. Twenty-one percent of the recorded neurons exhibited sensitivity to sound identity, as quantified by the difference in firing rate for the two sounds associated with the same response direction. Sensitivity to sound identity was often observed on only one of the two testing platforms, indicating an effect of spatial context on sensory responses. Forty-three percent of the neurons were sensitive to response direction, and the probability that any one neuron was sensitive to response direction was statistically independent from its sensitivity to sound identity. There was no significant coding for sound identity when the rats heard the same sounds outside the behavioral task. These results suggest that CA1 neurons encode sound stimuli, but only when those sounds are associated with actions.

  20. T-type calcium channels cause bursts of spikes in motor but not sensory thalamic neurons during mimicry of natural patterns of synaptic input

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Haram R.; Hong, Su Z.; Fiorillo, Christopher D.

    2015-01-01

    Although neurons within intact nervous systems can be classified as ‘sensory’ or ‘motor,’ it is not known whether there is any general distinction between sensory and motor neurons at the cellular or molecular levels. Here, we extend and test a theory according to which activation of certain subtypes of voltage-gated ion channel (VGC) generate patterns of spikes in neurons of motor systems, whereas VGC are proposed to counteract patterns in sensory neurons. We previously reported experimental evidence for the theory from visual thalamus, where we found that T-type calcium channels (TtCCs) did not cause bursts of spikes but instead served the function of ‘predictive homeostasis’ to maximize the causal and informational link between retinogeniculate excitation and spike output. Here, we have recorded neurons in brain slices from eight sensory and motor regions of rat thalamus while mimicking key features of natural excitatory and inhibitory post-synaptic potentials. As predicted by theory, TtCC did cause bursts of spikes in motor thalamus. TtCC-mediated responses in motor thalamus were activated at more hyperpolarized potentials and caused larger depolarizations with more spikes than in visual and auditory thalamus. Somatosensory thalamus is known to be more closely connected to motor regions relative to auditory and visual thalamus, and likewise the strength of its TtCC responses was intermediate between these regions and motor thalamus. We also observed lower input resistance, as well as limited evidence of stronger hyperpolarization-induced (‘H-type’) depolarization, in nuclei closer to motor output. These findings support our theory of a specific difference between sensory and motor neurons at the cellular level. PMID:26582654

  1. 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

  2. Cardiac Arrest-Induced Global Brain Hypoxia-Ischemia during Development Affects Spontaneous Activity Organization in Rat Sensory and Motor Thalamocortical Circuits during Adulthood.

    PubMed

    Shoykhet, Michael; Middleton, Jason W

    2016-01-01

    Normal maturation of sensory information processing in the cortex requires patterned synaptic activity during developmentally regulated critical periods. During early development, spontaneous synaptic activity establishes required patterns of synaptic input, and during later development it influences patterns of sensory experience-dependent neuronal firing. Thalamocortical neurons occupy a critical position in regulating the flow of patterned sensory information from the periphery to the cortex. Abnormal thalamocortical inputs may permanently affect the organization and function of cortical neuronal circuits, especially if they occur during a critical developmental window. We examined the effect of cardiac arrest (CA)-associated global brain hypoxia-ischemia in developing rats on spontaneous and evoked firing of somatosensory thalamocortical neurons and on large-scale correlations in the motor thalamocortical circuit. The mean spontaneous and sensory-evoked firing rate activity and variability were higher in CA injured rats. Furthermore, spontaneous and sensory-evoked activity and variability were correlated in uninjured rats, but not correlated in neurons from CA rats. Abnormal activity patterns of ventroposterior medial nucleus (VPm) neurons persisted into adulthood. Additionally, we found that neurons in the entopeduncular nucleus (EPN) in the basal ganglia had lower firing rates yet had higher variability and higher levels of burst firing after injury. Correlated levels of power in local field potentials (LFPs) between the EPN and the motor cortex (MCx) were also disrupted by injury. Our findings indicate that hypoxic-ischemic injury during development leads to abnormal spontaneous and sensory stimulus-evoked input patterns from thalamus to cortex. Abnormal thalamic inputs likely permanently and detrimentally affect the organization of cortical circuitry and processing of sensory information. Hypoxic-ischemic injury also leads to abnormal single neuron and

  3. Cardiac Arrest-Induced Global Brain Hypoxia-Ischemia during Development Affects Spontaneous Activity Organization in Rat Sensory and Motor Thalamocortical Circuits during Adulthood

    PubMed Central

    Shoykhet, Michael; Middleton, Jason W.

    2016-01-01

    Normal maturation of sensory information processing in the cortex requires patterned synaptic activity during developmentally regulated critical periods. During early development, spontaneous synaptic activity establishes required patterns of synaptic input, and during later development it influences patterns of sensory experience-dependent neuronal firing. Thalamocortical neurons occupy a critical position in regulating the flow of patterned sensory information from the periphery to the cortex. Abnormal thalamocortical inputs may permanently affect the organization and function of cortical neuronal circuits, especially if they occur during a critical developmental window. We examined the effect of cardiac arrest (CA)-associated global brain hypoxia-ischemia in developing rats on spontaneous and evoked firing of somatosensory thalamocortical neurons and on large-scale correlations in the motor thalamocortical circuit. The mean spontaneous and sensory-evoked firing rate activity and variability were higher in CA injured rats. Furthermore, spontaneous and sensory-evoked activity and variability were correlated in uninjured rats, but not correlated in neurons from CA rats. Abnormal activity patterns of ventroposterior medial nucleus (VPm) neurons persisted into adulthood. Additionally, we found that neurons in the entopeduncular nucleus (EPN) in the basal ganglia had lower firing rates yet had higher variability and higher levels of burst firing after injury. Correlated levels of power in local field potentials (LFPs) between the EPN and the motor cortex (MCx) were also disrupted by injury. Our findings indicate that hypoxic-ischemic injury during development leads to abnormal spontaneous and sensory stimulus-evoked input patterns from thalamus to cortex. Abnormal thalamic inputs likely permanently and detrimentally affect the organization of cortical circuitry and processing of sensory information. Hypoxic-ischemic injury also leads to abnormal single neuron and

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. Somatosensory response properties of excitatory and inhibitory neurons in rat motor cortex.

    PubMed

    Murray, Peter D; Keller, Asaf

    2011-09-01

    In sensory cortical networks, peripheral inputs differentially activate excitatory and inhibitory neurons. Inhibitory neurons typically have larger responses and broader receptive field tuning compared with excitatory neurons. These differences are thought to underlie the powerful feedforward inhibition that occurs in response to sensory input. In the motor cortex, as in the somatosensory cortex, cutaneous and proprioceptive somatosensory inputs, generated before and during movement, strongly and dynamically modulate the activity of motor neurons involved in a movement and ultimately shape cortical command. Human studies suggest that somatosensory inputs modulate motor cortical activity in a center excitation, surround inhibition manner such that input from the activated muscle excites motor cortical neurons that project to it, whereas somatosensory input from nearby, nonactivated muscles inhibit these neurons. A key prediction of this hypothesis is that inhibitory and excitatory motor cortical neurons respond differently to somatosensory inputs. We tested this prediction with the use of multisite extracellular recordings in anesthetized rats. We found that fast-spiking (presumably inhibitory) neurons respond to tactile and proprioceptive inputs at shorter latencies and larger response magnitudes compared with regular-spiking (presumably excitatory) neurons. In contrast, we found no differences in the receptive field size of these neuronal populations. Strikingly, all fast-spiking neuron pairs analyzed with cross-correlation analysis displayed common excitation, which was significantly more prevalent than common excitation for regular-spiking neuron pairs. These findings suggest that somatosensory inputs preferentially evoke feedforward inhibition in the motor cortex. We suggest that this provides a mechanism for dynamic selection of motor cortical modules during voluntary movements.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. Neuronal Entropy-Rate Feature of Entopeduncular Nucleus in Rat Model of Parkinson's Disease.

    PubMed

    Darbin, Olivier; Jin, Xingxing; Von Wrangel, Christof; Schwabe, Kerstin; Nambu, Atsushi; Naritoku, Dean K; Krauss, Joachim K; Alam, Mesbah

    2016-03-01

    The function of the nigro-striatal pathway on neuronal entropy in the basal ganglia (BG) output nucleus, i.e. the entopeduncular nucleus (EPN) was investigated in the unilaterally 6-hyroxydopamine (6-OHDA)-lesioned rat model of Parkinson's disease (PD). In both control subjects and subjects with 6-OHDA lesion of dopamine (DA) the nigro-striatal pathway, a histological hallmark for parkinsonism, neuronal entropy in EPN was maximal in neurons with firing rates ranging between 15 and 25 Hz. In 6-OHDA lesioned rats, neuronal entropy in the EPN was specifically higher in neurons with firing rates above 25 Hz. Our data establishes that the nigro-striatal pathway controls neuronal entropy in motor circuitry and that the parkinsonian condition is associated with abnormal relationship between firing rate and neuronal entropy in BG output nuclei. The neuronal firing rates and entropy relationship provide putative relevant electrophysiological information to investigate the sensory-motor processing in normal condition and conditions such as movement disorders.

  12. 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.

  13. Mitochondrial abnormality in sensory, but not motor, axons in paclitaxel-evoked painful peripheral neuropathy in the rat.

    PubMed

    Xiao, W H; Zheng, H; Zheng, F Y; Nuydens, R; Meert, T F; Bennett, G J

    2011-12-29

    The dose-limiting side effect of the anti-neoplastic agent, paclitaxel, is a chronic distal symmetrical peripheral neuropathy that produces sensory dysfunction (hypoesthesia and neuropathic pain) but little or no distal motor dysfunction. Similar peripheral neuropathies are seen with chemotherapeutics in the vinca alkaloid, platinum-complex, and proteasome inhibitor classes. Studies in rats suggest that the cause is a mitotoxic effect on axonal mitochondria. If so, then the absence of motor dysfunction may be due to mitotoxicity that affects sensory axons but spares motor axons. To investigate this, paclitaxel exposure levels in the dorsal root, ventral root, dorsal root ganglion, peripheral nerve, and spinal cord were measured, and the ultrastructure and the respiratory function of mitochondria in dorsal roots and ventral roots were compared. Sensory and motor axons in the roots and nerve had comparably low exposure to paclitaxel and exposure in the spinal cord was negligible. However, sensory neurons in the dorsal root ganglion had a very high and remarkably persistent (up to 10 days or more after the last injection) exposure to paclitaxel. Paclitaxel evoked a significant increase in the incidence of swollen and vacuolated mitochondria in the myelinated and unmyelinated sensory axons of the dorsal root (as seen previously in the peripheral nerve) but not in the motor axons of the ventral root. Stimulated mitochondrial respiration in the dorsal root was significantly depressed in paclitaxel-treated animals examined 2-4 weeks after the last injection, whereas respiration in the ventral root was normal. We conclude that the absence of motor dysfunction in paclitaxel-evoked peripheral neuropathy may be due to the absence of a mitotoxic effect in motor neuron axons, whereas the sensory dysfunction may be due to a mitotoxic effect resulting from the primary afferent neuron's cell body being exposed to high and persistent levels of paclitaxel.

  14. Phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase activates ERK in primary sensory neurons and mediates inflammatory heat hyperalgesia through TRPV1 sensitization.

    PubMed

    Zhuang, Zhi-Ye; Xu, Haoxing; Clapham, David E; Ji, Ru-Rong

    2004-09-22

    Although the PI3K (phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase) pathway typically regulates cell growth and survival, increasing evidence indicates the involvement of this pathway in neural plasticity. It is unknown whether the PI3K pathway can mediate pain hypersensitivity. Intradermal injection of capsaicin and NGF produce heat hyperalgesia by activating their respective TRPV1 (transient receptor potential vanilloid receptor-1) and TrkA receptors on nociceptor sensory nerve terminals. We examined the activation of PI3K in primary sensory DRG neurons by these inflammatory agents and the contribution of PI3K activation to inflammatory pain. We further investigated the correlation between the PI3K and the ERK (extracellular signal-regulated protein kinase) pathway. Capsaicin and NGF induce phosphorylation of the PI3K downstream target AKT (protein kinase B), which is blocked by the PI3K inhibitors LY294002 and wortmannin, indicative of the activation of PI3K by both agents. ERK activation by capsaicin and NGF was also blocked by PI3K inhibitors. Similarly, intradermal capsaicin in rats activated PI3K and ERK in C-fiber DRG neurons and epidermal nerve fibers. Injection of PI3K or MEK (ERK kinase) inhibitors into the hindpaw attenuated capsaicin- and NGF-evoked heat hyperalgesia but did not change basal heat sensitivity. Furthermore, PI3K, but not ERK, inhibition blocked early induction of hyperalgesia. In acutely dissociated DRG neurons, the capsaicin-induced TRPV1 current was strikingly potentiated by NGF, and this potentiation was completely blocked by PI3K inhibitors and primarily suppressed by MEK inhibitors. Therefore, PI3K induces heat hyperalgesia, possibly by regulating TRPV1 activity, in an ERK-dependent manner. The PI3K pathway also appears to play a role that is distinct from ERK by regulating the early onset of inflammatory pain.

  15. 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.

  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. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  1. Influence of norepinephrine on somatosensory neuronal responses in the rat thalamus: a combined modeling and in vivo multi-channel, multi-neuron recording study.

    PubMed

    Moxon, Karen A; Devilbiss, David M; Chapin, John K; Waterhouse, Barry D

    2007-05-25

    Norepinephrine released within primary sensory circuits from locus coeruleus afferent fibers can produce a spectrum of modulatory actions on spontaneous or sensory-evoked activity of individual neurons. Within the ventral posterior medial thalamus, membrane currents modulated by norepinephrine have been identified. However, the relationship between the cellular effects of norepinephrine and the impact of norepinephrine release on populations of neurons encoding sensory signals is still open to question. To address this lacuna in understanding the net impact of the noradrenergic system on sensory signal processing, a computational model of the rat trigeminal somatosensory thalamus was generated. The effects of independent manipulation of different cellular actions of norepinephrine on simulated afferent input to the computational model were then examined. The results of these simulations aided in the design of in vivo neural ensemble recording experiments where sensory-driven responses of thalamic neurons were measured before and during locus coeruleus activation in waking animals. Together the simulated and experimental results reveal several key insights regarding the regulation of neural network operation by norepinephrine including: 1) cell-specific modulatory actions of norepinephrine, 2) mechanisms of norepinephrine action that can improve the tuning of the network and increase the signal-to-noise ratio of cellular responses in order to enhance network representation of salient stimulus features and 3) identification of the dynamic range of thalamic neuron function through which norepinephrine operates.

  2. Transient Receptor Potential Channels Encode Volatile Chemicals Sensed by Rat Trigeminal Ganglion Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Schöbel, Nicole; Beltrán, Leopoldo; Wetzel, Christian Horst; Hatt, Hanns

    2013-01-01

    Primary sensory afferents of the dorsal root and trigeminal ganglia constantly transmit sensory information depicting the individual’s physical and chemical environment to higher brain regions. Beyond the typical trigeminal stimuli (e.g. irritants), environmental stimuli comprise a plethora of volatile chemicals with olfactory components (odorants). In spite of a complete loss of their sense of smell, anosmic patients may retain the ability to roughly discriminate between different volatile compounds. While the detailed mechanisms remain elusive, sensory structures belonging to the trigeminal system seem to be responsible for this phenomenon. In order to gain a better understanding of the mechanisms underlying the activation of the trigeminal system by volatile chemicals, we investigated odorant-induced membrane potential changes in cultured rat trigeminal neurons induced by the odorants vanillin, heliotropyl acetone, helional, and geraniol. We observed the dose-dependent depolarization of trigeminal neurons upon application of these substances occurring in a stimulus-specific manner and could show that distinct neuronal populations respond to different odorants. Using specific antagonists, we found evidence that TRPA1, TRPM8, and/or TRPV1 contribute to the activation. In order to further test this hypothesis, we used recombinantly expressed rat and human variants of these channels to investigate whether they are indeed activated by the odorants tested. We additionally found that the odorants dose-dependently inhibit two-pore potassium channels TASK1 and TASK3 heterologously expressed In Xenopus laevis oocytes. We suggest that the capability of various odorants to activate different TRP channels and to inhibit potassium channels causes neuronal depolarization and activation of distinct subpopulations of trigeminal sensory neurons, forming the basis for a specific representation of volatile chemicals in the trigeminal ganglia. PMID:24205061

  3. Transient receptor potential channels encode volatile chemicals sensed by rat trigeminal ganglion neurons.

    PubMed

    Lübbert, Matthias; Kyereme, Jessica; Schöbel, Nicole; Beltrán, Leopoldo; Wetzel, Christian Horst; Hatt, Hanns

    2013-01-01

    Primary sensory afferents of the dorsal root and trigeminal ganglia constantly transmit sensory information depicting the individual's physical and chemical environment to higher brain regions. Beyond the typical trigeminal stimuli (e.g. irritants), environmental stimuli comprise a plethora of volatile chemicals with olfactory components (odorants). In spite of a complete loss of their sense of smell, anosmic patients may retain the ability to roughly discriminate between different volatile compounds. While the detailed mechanisms remain elusive, sensory structures belonging to the trigeminal system seem to be responsible for this phenomenon. In order to gain a better understanding of the mechanisms underlying the activation of the trigeminal system by volatile chemicals, we investigated odorant-induced membrane potential changes in cultured rat trigeminal neurons induced by the odorants vanillin, heliotropyl acetone, helional, and geraniol. We observed the dose-dependent depolarization of trigeminal neurons upon application of these substances occurring in a stimulus-specific manner and could show that distinct neuronal populations respond to different odorants. Using specific antagonists, we found evidence that TRPA1, TRPM8, and/or TRPV1 contribute to the activation. In order to further test this hypothesis, we used recombinantly expressed rat and human variants of these channels to investigate whether they are indeed activated by the odorants tested. We additionally found that the odorants dose-dependently inhibit two-pore potassium channels TASK1 and TASK3 heterologously expressed In Xenopus laevis oocytes. We suggest that the capability of various odorants to activate different TRP channels and to inhibit potassium channels causes neuronal depolarization and activation of distinct subpopulations of trigeminal sensory neurons, forming the basis for a specific representation of volatile chemicals in the trigeminal ganglia.

  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. 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.

  6. Whisker row deprivation affects the flow of sensory information through rat barrel cortex.

    PubMed

    Jacob, Vincent; Mitani, Akinori; Toyoizumi, Taro; Fox, Kevin

    2017-01-01

    Whisker trimming causes substantial reorganization of neuronal response properties in barrel cortex. However, little is known about experience-dependent rerouting of sensory processing following sensory deprivation. To address this, we performed in vivo intracellular recordings from layers 2/3 (L2/3), layer 4 (L4), layer 5 regular-spiking (L5RS), and L5 intrinsically bursting (L5IB) neurons and measured their multiwhisker receptive field at the level of spiking activity, membrane potential, and synaptic conductance before and after sensory deprivation. We used Chernoff information to quantify the "sensory information" contained in the firing patterns of cells in response to spared and deprived whisker stimulation. In the control condition, information for flanking-row and same-row whiskers decreased in the order L4, L2/3, L5IB, L5RS. However, after whisker-row deprivation, spared flanking-row whisker information was reordered to L4, L5RS, L5IB, L2/3. Sensory information from the trimmed whiskers was reduced and delayed in L2/3 and L5IB neurons, whereas sensory information from spared whiskers was increased and advanced in L4 and L5RS neurons. Sensory information from spared whiskers was increased in L5IB neurons without a latency change. L5RS cells exhibited the largest changes in sensory information content through an atypical plasticity combining a significant decrease in spontaneous activity and an increase in a short-latency excitatory conductance.

  7. 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.

  8. Somatomotor and sensory urethral control of micturition in female rats.

    PubMed

    Cruz, Yolanda; Pastelín, César; Balog, Brian M; Zaszczurynski, Paul J; Damaser, Margot S

    2014-12-01

    In rats, axons of external urethral sphincter (EUS) motoneurons travel through the anastomotic branch of the pudendal nerve (ABPD) and anastomotic branch of the lumbosacral trunk (ABLT) and converge in the motor branch of the sacral plexus (MBSP). The aim of the present study was to determine in female rats the contribution of these somatomotor pathways and urethral sensory innervation from the dorsal nerve of the clitoris on urinary continence and voiding. EUS electromyographic (EMG) activity during cystometry, leak point pressure (LPP), and voiding efficiency (VE) were assessed in anesthetized virgin Sprague-Dawley female rats before and after transection of the above nerve branches. Transection of the MBSP eliminated EUS EMG, decreased LPP by 50%, and significantly reduced bladder contraction duration, peak pressure, intercontraction interval, and VE. Transection of the ABPD or ABLT decreased EUS EMG discharge and LPP by 25% but did not affect VE. Transection of the dorsal nerve of the clitoris did not affect LPP but reduced contraction duration, peak pressure, intercontraction interval, and VE. We conclude that somatomotor control of micturition is provided by the MBSP with axons travelling through the ABPD and ABLT. Partial somatomotor urethral denervation induces mild urinary incontinence, whereas partial afferent denervation induces voiding dysfunction. ABPD and ABLT pathways could represent a safeguard ensuring innervation to the EUS in case of upper nerve damage. Detailed knowledge of neuroanatomy and functional innervation of the urethra will enable more accurate animal models of neural development, disease, and dysfunction in the future.

  9. Somatomotor and sensory urethral control of micturition in female rats

    PubMed Central

    Cruz, Yolanda; Pastelín, César; Balog, Brian M.; Zaszczurynski, Paul J.

    2014-01-01

    In rats, axons of external urethral sphincter (EUS) motoneurons travel through the anastomotic branch of the pudendal nerve (ABPD) and anastomotic branch of the lumbosacral trunk (ABLT) and converge in the motor branch of the sacral plexus (MBSP). The aim of the present study was to determine in female rats the contribution of these somatomotor pathways and urethral sensory innervation from the dorsal nerve of the clitoris on urinary continence and voiding. EUS electromyographic (EMG) activity during cystometry, leak point pressure (LPP), and voiding efficiency (VE) were assessed in anesthetized virgin Sprague-Dawley female rats before and after transection of the above nerve branches. Transection of the MBSP eliminated EUS EMG, decreased LPP by 50%, and significantly reduced bladder contraction duration, peak pressure, intercontraction interval, and VE. Transection of the ABPD or ABLT decreased EUS EMG discharge and LPP by 25% but did not affect VE. Transection of the dorsal nerve of the clitoris did not affect LPP but reduced contraction duration, peak pressure, intercontraction interval, and VE. We conclude that somatomotor control of micturition is provided by the MBSP with axons travelling through the ABPD and ABLT. Partial somatomotor urethral denervation induces mild urinary incontinence, whereas partial afferent denervation induces voiding dysfunction. ABPD and ABLT pathways could represent a safeguard ensuring innervation to the EUS in case of upper nerve damage. Detailed knowledge of neuroanatomy and functional innervation of the urethra will enable more accurate animal models of neural development, disease, and dysfunction in the future. PMID:25339694

  10. Nerve growth factor acts through the TrkA receptor to protect sensory neurons from the damaging effects of the HIV-1 viral protein, Vpr.

    PubMed

    Webber, C A; Salame, J; Luu, G-L S; Acharjee, S; Ruangkittisakul, A; Martinez, J A; Jalali, H; Watts, R; Ballanyi, K; Guo, G F; Zochodne, D W; Power, C

    2013-11-12

    Distal sensory polyneuropathy (DSP) with associated neuropathic pain is the most common neurological disorder affecting patients with human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS). Viral protein R (Vpr) is a neurotoxic protein encoded by HIV-1 and secreted by infected macrophages. Vpr reduces neuronal viability, increases cytosolic calcium and membrane excitability of cultured dorsal root ganglion (DRG) sensory neurons, and is associated with mechanical allodynia in vivo. A clinical trial with HIV/AIDS patients demonstrated that nerve growth factor (NGF) reduced the severity of DSP-associated neuropathic pain, a problem linked to damage to small diameter, potentially NGF-responsive fibers. Herein, the actions of NGF were investigated in our Vpr model of DSP and we demonstrated that NGF significantly protected sensory neurons from the effects of Vpr. Footpads of immunodeficient Vpr transgenic (vpr/RAG1(-/-)) mice displayed allodynia (p<0.05), diminished epidermalinnervation (p<0.01) and reduced NGF mRNA expression (p<0.001) compared to immunodeficient (wildtype/RAG1(-/-)) littermate control mice. Compartmented cultures confirmed recombinant Vpr exposure to the DRG neuronal perikarya decreased distal neurite extension (p<0.01), whereas NGF exposure at these distal axons protected the DRG neurons from the Vpr-induced effect on their cell bodies. NGF prevented Vpr-induced attenuation of the phosphorylated glycogen synthase-3 axon extension pathway and tropomyosin-related kinase A (TrkA) receptor expression in DRG neurons (p<0.05) and it directly counteracted the cytosolic calcium burst caused by Vpr exposure to DRG neurons (p<0.01). TrkA receptor agonist indicated that NGFacted through the TrkA receptor to block the Vpr-mediated decrease in axon outgrowth in neonatal and adult rat and fetal human DRG neurons (p<0.05). Similarly, inhibiting the lower affinity NGF receptor, p75, blocked Vpr's effect on DRG neurons. Overall, NGF/TrkA signaling

  11. Nerve growth factor acts through the TrkA receptor to protect sensory neurons from the damaging effects of the HIV-1 viral protein, Vpr

    PubMed Central

    Webber, Christine A.; Salame, Jihan; Luu, Gia-Linh S.; Acharjee, Shaona; Ruangkittisakul, Araya; Martinez, Jose A.; Jalali, Hanieh; Watts, Russell; Ballanyi, Klaus; Guo, Gui Fang; Zochodne, Douglas W.; Power, Christopher

    2013-01-01

    Distal sensory polyneuropathy (DSP) with associated neuropathic pain is the most common neurological disorder affecting patients with human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS). Viral protein R (Vpr) is a neurotoxic protein encoded by HIV-1 and secreted by infected macrophages. Vpr reduces neuronal viability, increases cytosolic calcium and membrane excitability of cultured dorsal root ganglion (DRG) sensory neurons, and is associated with mechanical allodynia in vivo. A clinical trial with HIV/AIDS patients demonstrated that nerve growth factor (NGF) reduced the severity of DSP-associated neuropathic pain, a problem linked to damage to small diameter, potentially NGF responsive fibers. Herein, the actions of NGF were investigated in our Vpr model of DSP and we demonstrated that NGF significantly protected sensory neurons from the effects of Vpr. Footpads of immunodeficient Vpr transgenic (vpr/RAG1−/−) mice displayed allodynia (p<0.05), diminished epidermal innervation (p<0.01) and reduced NGF mRNA expression (p<0.001) compared to immunodeficient (wildtype/RAG1−/−) littermate control mice. Compartmented cultures confirmed recombinant Vpr exposure to the DRG neuronal perikarya decreased distal neurite extension (p<0.01), whereas NGF exposure at these distal axons protected the DRG neurons from the Vpr-induced effect on their cell bodies. NGF prevented Vpr-induced attenuation of the phosphorylated glycogen synthase-3 axon extension pathway and tropomyosin related kinase A (TrkA) receptor expression in DRG neurons (p<0.05) and it directly counteracted the cytosolic calcium burst caused by Vpr exposure to DRG neurons (p<0.01). TrkA receptor antagonists indicated that NGF acted through the TrkA receptor to block the Vpr-mediated decrease in axon outgrowth in neonatal and adult rat and fetal human DRG neurons (p<0.05). Similarly, inhibiting the lower affinity NGF receptor, p75, blocked Vpr’s effect on DRG neurons. Overall, NGF

  12. Morphine inhibits acid-sensing ion channel currents in rat dorsal root ganglion neurons.

    PubMed

    Cai, Qi; Qiu, Chun-Yu; Qiu, Fang; Liu, Ting-Ting; Qu, Zu-Wei; Liu, Yu-Min; Hu, Wang-Ping

    2014-03-20

    Extracellular acidosis is a common feature in pain-generating pathological conditions. Acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs), pH sensors, are distributed in peripheral sensory neurons and participate in nociception. Morphine exerts potent analgesic effects through the activation of opioid receptors for various pain conditions. A cross-talk between ASICs and opioid receptors in peripheral sensory neurons has not been shown so far. Here, we have found that morphine inhibits the activity of native ASICs in rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons. Morphine dose-dependently inhibited proton-gated currents mediated by ASICs in the presence of the TRPV1 inhibitor capsazepine. Morphine shifted the proton concentration-response curve downwards, with a decrease of 51.4±3.8% in the maximum current response but with no significant change in the pH0.5 value. Another μ-opioid receptor agonist DAMGO induced a similar decrease in ASIC currents compared with morphine. The morphine inhibition of ASIC currents was blocked by naloxone, a specific opioid receptor antagonist. Pretreatment of forskolin, an adenylyl cyclase activator, or the addition of cAMP reversed the inhibitory effect of morphine. Moreover, morphine altered acid-evoked excitability of rat DRG neurons and decreased the number of action potentials induced by acid stimuli. Finally, peripheral applied morphine relieved pain evoked by intraplantar of acetic acid in rats. Our results indicate that morphine can inhibit the activity of ASICs via μ-opioid receptor and cAMP dependent signal pathway. These observations demonstrate a cross-talk between ASICs and opioid receptors in peripheral sensory neurons, which was a novel analgesic mechanism of morphine.

  13. Rat whisker motor cortex is subdivided into sensory-input and motor-output areas

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Jared B.; Alloway, Kevin D.

    2013-01-01

    Rodent whisking is an exploratory behavior that can be modified by sensory feedback. Consistent with this, many whisker-sensitive cortical regions project to agranular motor [motor cortex (MI)] cortex, but the relative topography of these afferent projections has not been established. Intracortical microstimulation (ICMS) evokes whisker movements that are used to map the functional organization of MI, but no study has compared the whisker-related inputs to MI with the ICMS sites that evoke whisker movements. To elucidate this relationship, anterograde tracers were placed in posterior parietal cortex (PPC) and in the primary somatosensory (SI) and secondary somatosensory (SII) cortical areas so that their labeled projections to MI could be analyzed with respect to ICMS sites that evoke whisker movements. Projections from SI and SII terminate in a narrow zone that marks the transition between the medial agranular (AGm) and lateral agranular (AGl) cortical areas, but PPC projects more medially and terminates in AGm proper. Paired recordings of MI neurons indicate that the region between AGm and AGl is highly responsive to whisker deflections, but neurons in AGm display negligible responses to whisker stimulation. By contrast, AGm microstimulation is more effective in evoking whisker movements than microstimulation of the transitional region between AGm and AGl. The AGm region was also found to contain a larger concentration of corticotectal neurons, which could convey whisker-related information to the facial nucleus. These results indicate that rat whisker MI is comprised of at least two functionally distinct subregions: a sensory processing zone in the transitional region between AGm and AGl, and a motor-output region located more medially in AGm proper. PMID:23372545

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. Enhancement of acid-sensing ion channel activity by metabotropic P2Y UTP receptors in primary sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Ren, Cuixia; Gan, Xiong; Wu, Jing; Qiu, Chun-Yu; Hu, Wang-Ping

    2016-03-01

    Peripheral purinergic signaling plays an important role in nociception. Increasing evidence suggests that metabotropic P2Y receptors are also involved, but little is known about the underlying mechanism. Herein, we report that selective P2Y receptor agonist uridine 5'-triphosphate (UTP) can exert an enhancing effect on the functional activity of acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs), key sensors for extracellular protons, in rat dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons. First, UTP dose-dependently increased the amplitude of ASIC currents. UTP also shifted the concentration-response curve for proton upwards, with a 56.6 ± 6.4% increase of the maximal current response to proton. Second, UTP potentiation of proton-gated currents can be mimicked by adenosine 5'-triphosphate (ATP), but not by P2Y1 receptor agonist ADP. Potentiation of UTP was blocked by P2Y receptor antagonist suramin and by inhibition of intracellular G protein, phospholipase C (PLC), protein kinase C (PKC), or protein interacting with C-kinase 1 (PICK1) signaling. Third, UTP altered acidosis-evoked membrane excitability of DRG neurons and caused a significant increase in the amplitude of the depolarization and the number of spikes induced by acid stimuli. Finally, UTP dose-dependently exacerbated nociceptive responses to injection of acetic acid in rats. These results suggest that UTP enhanced ASIC-mediated currents and nociceptive responses, which reveal a novel peripheral mechanism underlying UTP-sensitive P2Y2 receptor involvement in hyperalgesia by sensitizing ASICs in primary sensory neurons.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. Self- and Cross-desensitization of Oral Irritation by Menthol and Cinnamaldehyde (CA) via Peripheral Interactions at Trigeminal Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Klein, Amanda H.; Zanotto, Karen L.; Sawyer, Carolyn M.; Ivanov, Margaret; Cheung, Susan

    2011-01-01

    Menthol and cinnamaldehyde (CA) are plant-derived spices commonly used in oral hygiene products, chewing gum, and many other applications. However, little is known regarding their sensory interactions in the oral cavity. We used a human psychophysics approach to investigate the temporal dynamics of oral irritation elicited by sequential application of menthol and/or CA, and ratiometric calcium imaging methods to investigate activation of rat trigeminal ganglion (TG) cells by these agents. Irritancy decreased significantly with sequential oral application of menthol and CA (self-desensitization). Menthol cross-desensitized irritation elicited by CA, and vice versa, over a time course of at least 60 min. Seventeen and 19% of TG cells were activated by menthol and CA, respectively, with ∼50% responding to both. TG cells exhibited significant self-desensitization to menthol applied at a 5, but not 10, min interval. They also exhibited significant self-desensitization to CA at 400 but not 200 μM. Menthol cross-desensitized TG cell responses to CA. CA at a concentration of 400 but not 200 μM also cross-desensitized menthol-evoked responses. The results support the argument that the perceived reductions in oral irritancy and cross-interactions between menthol and CA and menthol observed (at least at short interstimulus intervals) can be largely accounted for by the properties of trigeminal sensory neurons innervating the tongue. PMID:21059698

  4. Self- and cross-desensitization of oral irritation by menthol and cinnamaldehyde (CA) via peripheral interactions at trigeminal sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Klein, Amanda H; Carstens, Mirela Iodi; Zanotto, Karen L; Sawyer, Carolyn M; Ivanov, Margaret; Cheung, Susan; Carstens, E

    2011-01-01

    Menthol and cinnamaldehyde (CA) are plant-derived spices commonly used in oral hygiene products, chewing gum, and many other applications. However, little is known regarding their sensory interactions in the oral cavity. We used a human psychophysics approach to investigate the temporal dynamics of oral irritation elicited by sequential application of menthol and/or CA, and ratiometric calcium imaging methods to investigate activation of rat trigeminal ganglion (TG) cells by these agents. Irritancy decreased significantly with sequential oral application of menthol and CA (self-desensitization). Menthol cross-desensitized irritation elicited by CA, and vice versa, over a time course of at least 60 min. Seventeen and 19% of TG cells were activated by menthol and CA, respectively, with ∼50% responding to both. TG cells exhibited significant self-desensitization to menthol applied at a 5, but not 10, min interval. They also exhibited significant self-desensitization to CA at 400 but not 200 μM. Menthol cross-desensitized TG cell responses to CA. CA at a concentration of 400 but not 200 μM also cross-desensitized menthol-evoked responses. The results support the argument that the perceived reductions in oral irritancy and cross-interactions between menthol and CA and menthol observed (at least at short interstimulus intervals) can be largely accounted for by the properties of trigeminal sensory neurons innervating the tongue.

  5. 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

  6. Immunohistochemical localization of two types of choline acetyltransferase in neurons and sensory cells of the octopus arm.

    PubMed

    Sakaue, Yuko; Bellier, Jean-Pierre; Kimura, Shin; D'Este, Loredana; Takeuchi, Yoshihiro; Kimura, Hiroshi

    2014-01-01

    Cholinergic structures in the arm of the cephalopod Octopus vulgaris were studied by immunohistochemistry using specific antisera for two types (common and peripheral) of acetylcholine synthetic enzyme choline acetyltransferase (ChAT): antiserum raised against the rat common type ChAT (cChAT), which is cross-reactive with molluscan cChAT, and antiserum raised against the rat peripheral type ChAT (pChAT), which has been used to delineate peripheral cholinergic structures in vertebrates, but not previously in invertebrates. Western blot analysis of octopus extracts revealed a single pChAT-positive band, suggesting that pChAT antiserum is cross-reactive with an octopus counterpart of rat pChAT. In immunohistochemistry, only neuronal structures of the octopus arm were stained by cChAT and pChAT antisera, although the pattern of distribution clearly differed between the two antisera. cChAT-positive varicose nerve fibers were observed in both the cerebrobrachial tract and neuropil of the axial nerve cord, while pChAT-positive varicose fibers were detected only in the neuropil of the axial nerve cord. After epitope retrieval, pChAT-positive neuronal cells and their processes became visible in all ganglia of the arm, including the axial and intramuscular nerve cords, and in ganglia of suckers. Moreover, pChAT-positive structures also became detectable in nerve fibers connecting the different ganglia, in smooth nerve fibers among muscle layers and dermal connective tissues, and in sensory cells of the suckers. These results suggest that the octopus arm has two types of cholinergic nerves: cChAT-positive nerves from brain ganglia and pChAT-positive nerves that are intrinsic to the arm.

  7. Changing numbers of neuronal and non-neuronal cells underlie postnatal brain growth in the rat

    PubMed Central

    Bandeira, Fabiana; Lent, Roberto; Herculano-Houzel, Suzana

    2009-01-01

    The rat brain increases >6× in mass from birth to adulthood, presumably through the addition of glial cells and increasing neuronal size, without the addition of neurons. To test this hypothesis, here we investigate quantitatively the postnatal changes in the total number of neuronal and non-neuronal cells in the developing rat brain, and examine how these changes correlate with brain growth. Total numbers of cells were determined with the isotropic fractionator in the brains of 53 Wistar rats, from birth to young adulthood. We find that at birth, >90% of the cells in the rat brain are neurons. Following a dormant period of ≈3 days after birth, the net number of neurons in the cerebral cortex, hippocampus, and remaining tissue (excluding cerebellum and olfactory bulb) doubles during the first week, then is reduced by 70% during the second postnatal week, concurrently with net gliogenesis. A second round of net addition of 6 million neurons is observed in the cerebral cortex over the following 2 weeks. During the first postnatal week, brain growth relates mainly to increased numbers of neurons of larger average size. In the second and third weeks, it correlates with increased numbers of non-neuronal cells that are smaller in size than the preexisting neurons. Postnatal rat brain development is thus characterized by dramatic changes in the cellular composition of the brain, whose growth is governed by different combinations of cell addition and loss, and changes in average cell size during the first months after birth. PMID:19666520

  8. 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

  9. Characteristics of sodium currents in rat geniculate ganglion neurons.

    PubMed

    Nakamura, Shiro; Bradley, Robert M

    2011-12-01

    Geniculate ganglion (GG) cell bodies of chorda tympani (CT), greater superficial petrosal (GSP), and posterior auricular (PA) nerves transmit orofacial sensory information to the rostral nucleus of the solitary tract. We have used whole cell recording to investigate the characteristics of the Na(+) channels in isolated Fluorogold-labeled GG neurons that innervate different peripheral receptive fields. GG neurons expressed two classes of Na(+) channels, TTX sensitive (TTX-S) and TTX resistant (TTX-R). The majority of GG neurons expressed TTX-R currents of different amplitudes. TTX-R currents were relatively small in 60% of the neurons but were large in 12% of the sampled population. In a further 28% of the neurons, TTX completely abolished all Na(+) currents. Application of TTX completely inhibited action potential generation in all CT and PA neurons but had little effect on the generation of action potentials in 40% of GSP neurons. Most CT, GSP, and PA neurons stained positively with IB(4), and 27% of the GSP neurons were capsaicin sensitive. The majority of IB(4)-positive GSP neurons with large TTX-R Na(+) currents responded to capsaicin, whereas IB(4)-positive GSP neurons with small TTX-R Na(+) currents were capsaicin insensitive. These data demonstrate the heterogeneity of GG neurons and indicate the existence of a subset of GSP neurons sensitive to capsaicin, usually associated with nociceptors. Since there are no reports of nociceptors in the GSP receptive field, the role of these capsaicin-sensitive neurons is not clear.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Gabapentin Inhibits Protein Kinase C Epsilon Translocation in Cultured Sensory Neurons with Additive Effects When Coapplied with Paracetamol (Acetaminophen)

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    Gabapentin is a well-established anticonvulsant drug which is also effective for the treatment of neuropathic pain. Although the exact mechanism leading to relief of allodynia and hyperalgesia caused by neuropathy is not known, the blocking effect of gabapentin on voltage-dependent calcium channels has been proposed to be involved. In order to further evaluate its analgesic mechanisms, we tested the efficacy of gabapentin on protein kinase C epsilon (PKCε) translocation in cultured peripheral neurons isolated from rat dorsal root ganglia (DRGs). We found that gabapentin significantly reduced PKCε translocation induced by the pronociceptive peptides bradykinin and prokineticin 2, involved in both inflammatory and chronic pain. We recently showed that paracetamol (acetaminophen), a very commonly used analgesic drug, also produces inhibition of PKCε. We tested the effect of the combined use of paracetamol and gabapentin, and we found that the inhibition of translocation adds up. Our study provides a novel mechanism of action for gabapentin in sensory neurons and suggests a mechanism of action for the combined use of paracetamol and gabapentin, which has recently been shown to be effective, with a cumulative behavior, in the control of postoperative pain in human patients. PMID:28299349

  17. Gabapentin Inhibits Protein Kinase C Epsilon Translocation in Cultured Sensory Neurons with Additive Effects When Coapplied with Paracetamol (Acetaminophen).

    PubMed

    Vellani, Vittorio; Giacomoni, Chiara

    2017-01-01

    Gabapentin is a well-established anticonvulsant drug which is also effective for the treatment of neuropathic pain. Although the exact mechanism leading to relief of allodynia and hyperalgesia caused by neuropathy is not known, the blocking effect of gabapentin on voltage-dependent calcium channels has been proposed to be involved. In order to further evaluate its analgesic mechanisms, we tested the efficacy of gabapentin on protein kinase C epsilon (PKCε) translocation in cultured peripheral neurons isolated from rat dorsal root ganglia (DRGs). We found that gabapentin significantly reduced PKCε translocation induced by the pronociceptive peptides bradykinin and prokineticin 2, involved in both inflammatory and chronic pain. We recently showed that paracetamol (acetaminophen), a very commonly used analgesic drug, also produces inhibition of PKCε. We tested the effect of the combined use of paracetamol and gabapentin, and we found that the inhibition of translocation adds up. Our study provides a novel mechanism of action for gabapentin in sensory neurons and suggests a mechanism of action for the combined use of paracetamol and gabapentin, which has recently been shown to be effective, with a cumulative behavior, in the control of postoperative pain in human patients.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. Alertness opens the effective flow of sensory information through rat thalamic posterior nucleus.

    PubMed

    Sobolewski, Aleksander; Kublik, Ewa; Swiejkowski, Daniel A; Kamiński, Jan; Wróbel, Andrzej

    2015-05-01

    Behavioural reactions to sensory stimuli vary with the level of arousal, but little is known about the underlying reorganization of neuronal networks. In this study, we use chronic recordings from the somatosensory regions of the thalamus and cortex of behaving rats together with a novel analysis of functional connectivity to show that during low arousal tactile signals are transmitted via the ventral posteromedial thalamic nucleus (VPM), a first-order thalamic relay, to the primary somatosensory (barrel) cortex and then from the cortex to the posterior medial thalamic nucleus (PoM), which plays a role of a higher-order thalamic relay. By contrast, during high arousal this network scheme is modified and both VPM and PoM transmit peripheral input to the barrel cortex acting as first-order relays. We also show that in urethane anaesthesia PoM is largely excluded from the thalamo-cortical loop. We thus demonstrate a way in which the thalamo-cortical system, despite its fixed anatomy, is capable of dynamically reconfiguring the transmission route of a sensory signal in concert with the behavioural state of an animal.

  1. 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

  2. Subplate neurons promote spindle bursts and thalamocortical patterning in the neonatal rat somatosensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Tolner, Else A.; Sheikh, Aminah; Yukin, Alexey Y.; Kaila, Kai; Kanold, Patrick

    2012-01-01

    Patterned neuronal activity such as spindle bursts in the neonatal cortex is likely to promote the maturation of cortical synapses and neuronal circuits. Previous work on cats has shown that removal of subplate neurons, a transient neuronal population in the immature cortex, prevents the functional maturation of thalamocortical and intracortical connectivity. Here we studied the effect of subplate removal in the neonatal rat somatosensory cortex (S1). Using intracortical EEG we show that after selective removal of subplate neurons in the limb region of S1, endogenous and sensory evoked spindle burst activity is largely abolished. Consistent with the reduced in vivo activity in the S1 limb region, we find by in vitro recordings that thalamocortical inputs to layer 4 neurons are weak. In addition, we find that removal of subplate neurons in the S1 barrel region prevents the development of the characteristic histological barrel-like appearance. Thus, subplate neurons are crucially involved in the generation of particular types of early network activity in the neonatal cortex, which are an important feature of cortical development. The altered EEG pattern following subplate damage could be applicable in the neurological assessment of human neonates. PMID:22238105

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. Regulation of voltage-gated Ca(2+) currents by Ca(2+)/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II in resting sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Kostic, Sandra; Pan, Bin; Guo, Yuan; Yu, Hongwei; Sapunar, Damir; Kwok, Wai-Meng; Hudmon, Andy; Wu, Hsiang-En; Hogan, Quinn H

    2014-09-01

    Calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) is recognized as a key element in encoding depolarization activity of excitable cells into facilitated voltage-gated Ca(2+) channel (VGCC) function. Less is known about the participation of CaMKII in regulating VGCCs in resting cells. We examined constitutive CaMKII control of Ca(2+) currents in peripheral sensory neurons acutely isolated from dorsal root ganglia (DRGs) of adult rats. The small molecule CaMKII inhibitor KN-93 (1.0μM) reduced depolarization-induced ICa by 16-30% in excess of the effects produced by the inactive homolog KN-92. The specificity of CaMKII inhibition on VGCC function was shown by the efficacy of the selective CaMKII blocking peptide autocamtide-2-related inhibitory peptide in a membrane-permeable myristoylated form, which also reduced VGCC current in resting neurons. Loss of VGCC currents is primarily due to reduced N-type current, as application of mAIP selectively reduced N-type current by approximately 30%, and prior N-type current inhibition eliminated the effect of mAIP on VGCCs, while prior block of L-type channels did not reduce the effect of mAIP on total ICa. T-type currents were not affected by mAIP in resting DRG neurons. Transduction of sensory neurons in vivo by DRG injection of an adeno-associated virus expressing AIP also resulted in a loss of N-type currents. Together, these findings reveal a novel molecular adaptation whereby sensory neurons retain CaMKII support of VGCCs despite remaining quiescent.

  12. A single-neuron tracing study of arkypallidal and prototypic neurons in healthy rats.

    PubMed

    Fujiyama, Fumino; Nakano, Takashi; Matsuda, Wakoto; Furuta, Takahiro; Udagawa, Jun; Kaneko, Takeshi

    2016-12-01

    The external globus pallidus (GP) is known as a relay nucleus of the indirect pathway of the basal ganglia. Recent studies in dopamine-depleted and healthy rats indicate that the GP comprises two main types of pallidofugal neurons: the so-called "prototypic" and "arkypallidal" neurons. However, the reconstruction of complete arkypallidal neurons in healthy rats has not been reported. Here we visualized the entire axonal arborization of four single arkypallidal neurons and six single prototypic neurons in rat brain using labeling with a viral vector expressing membrane-targeted green fluorescent protein and examined the distribution of axon boutons in the target nuclei. Results revealed that not only the arkypallidal neurons but nearly all of the prototypic neurons projected to the striatum with numerous axon varicosities. Thus, the striatum is a major target nucleus for pallidal neurons. Arkypallidal and prototypic GP neurons located in the calbindin-positive and calbindin-negative regions mainly projected to the corresponding positive and negative regions in the striatum. Because the GP and striatum calbindin staining patterns reflect the topographic organization of the striatopallidal projection, the striatal neurons in the sensorimotor and associative regions constitute the reciprocal connection with the GP neurons in the corresponding regions.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. Sensory-evoked and spontaneous gamma and spindle bursts in neonatal rat motor cortex.

    PubMed

    An, Shuming; Kilb, Werner; Luhmann, Heiko J

    2014-08-13

    Self-generated neuronal activity originating from subcortical regions drives early spontaneous motor activity, which is a hallmark of the developing sensorimotor system. However, the neural activity patterns and role of primary motor cortex (M1) in these early movements are still unknown. Combining voltage-sensitive dye imaging (VSDI) with simultaneous extracellular multielectrode recordings in postnatal day 3 (P3)-P5 rat primary somatosensory cortex (S1) and M1 in vivo, we observed that tactile forepaw stimulation induced spindle bursts in S1 and gamma and spindle bursts in M1. Approximately 40% of the spontaneous gamma and spindle bursts in M1 were driven by early motor activity, whereas 23.7% of the M1 bursts triggered forepaw movements. Approximately 35% of the M1 bursts were uncorrelated to movements and these bursts had significantly fewer spikes and shorter burst duration. Focal electrical stimulation of layer V neurons in M1 mimicking physiologically relevant 40 Hz gamma or 10 Hz spindle burst activity reliably elicited forepaw movements. We conclude that M1 is already involved in somatosensory information processing during early development. M1 is mainly activated by tactile stimuli triggered by preceding spontaneous movements, which reach M1 via S1. Only a fraction of M1 activity transients trigger motor responses directly. We suggest that both spontaneously occurring and sensory-evoked gamma and spindle bursts in M1 contribute to the maturation of corticospinal and sensorimotor networks required for the refinement of sensorimotor coordination.

  18. Embedding a Panoramic Representation of Infrared Light in the Adult Rat Somatosensory Cortex through a Sensory Neuroprosthesis

    PubMed Central

    Hartmann, Konstantin; Thomson, Eric E.; Zea, Ivan; Yun, Richy; Mullen, Peter; Canarick, Jay; Huh, Albert

    2016-01-01

    Can the adult brain assimilate a novel, topographically organized, sensory modality into its perceptual repertoire? To test this, we implemented a microstimulation-based neuroprosthesis that rats used to discriminate among infrared (IR) light sources. This system continuously relayed information from four IR sensors that were distributed to provide a panoramic view of IR sources, into primary somatosensory cortex (S1). Rats learned to discriminate the location of IR sources in <4 d. Animals in which IR information was delivered in spatial register with whisker topography learned the task more quickly. Further, in animals that had learned to use the prosthesis, altering the topographic mapping from IR sensor to stimulating electrode had immediate deleterious effects on discrimination performance. Multielectrode recordings revealed that S1 neurons had multimodal (tactile/IR) receptive fields, with clear preferences for those stimuli most likely to be delivered during the task. Neuronal populations predicted, with high accuracy, which stimulation pattern was present in small (75 ms) time windows. Surprisingly, when identical microstimulation patterns were delivered during an unrelated task, cortical activity in S1 was strongly suppressed. Overall, these results show that the adult mammalian neocortex can readily absorb completely new information sources into its representational repertoire, and use this information in the production of adaptive behaviors. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Understanding the potential for plasticity in the adult brain is a key goal for basic neuroscience and modern rehabilitative medicine. Our study examines one dimension of this challenge: how malleable is sensory processing in adult mammals? We implemented a panoramic infrared (IR) sensory prosthetic system in rats; it consisted of four IR sensors equally spaced around the circumference of the head of the rat. Each sensor was coupled to a microstimulating electrode placed in the somatosensory

  19. Interactions between Kisspeptin Neurons and Hypothalamic Tuberoinfundibular Dopaminergic Neurons in Aged Female Rats

    PubMed Central

    Iwata, Kinuyo; Ikehara, Masaaki; Kunimura, Yuyu; Ozawa, Hitoshi

    2016-01-01

    Kisspeptin neurons in the arcuate nucleus (ARC) regulate prolactin secretion, and are in physical contact with tuberoinfundibular dopaminergic (TIDA) neurons, which inhibit prolactin secretion. Prolactin levels in the blood are increased with advancing age in rats; therefore, we investigated the interactions with TIDA neurons and kisspeptin neurons in aged female rats (24 months of age), relative to those of young adult female rats (9–10 weeks of age). Plasma prolactin levels in the aged rats were significantly higher than those of young adult rats. Tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)-immunoreactive (ir) cell bodies and kisspeptin-ir nerve fibers were found in the dorsomedial ARC of both groups. The number of TH-ir cell bodies in the dorsomedial ARC did not differ significantly between groups. Additionally, no significant differences in the number of TH-ir cells in contact with kisspeptin-ir fibers was observed between groups. However, the number of kisspeptin-ir or Kiss1 mRNA-expressing cells in the ARC was significantly reduced in the aged rats compared with that of the young rats. These results suggest that the contacts between TIDA neurons and kisspeptin neurons are maintained after reproductive senescence, while production of kisspeptin in the ARC decreases significantly during aging. PMID:28127107

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. Populations of striatal medium spiny neurons encode vibrotactile frequency in rats: modulation by slow wave oscillations.

    PubMed

    Hawking, Thomas G; Gerdjikov, Todor V

    2013-01-01

    Dorsolateral striatum (DLS) is implicated in tactile perception and receives strong projections from somatosensory cortex. However, the sensory representations encoded by striatal projection neurons are not well understood. Here we characterized the contribution of DLS to the encoding of vibrotactile information in rats by assessing striatal responses to precise frequency stimuli delivered to a single vibrissa. We applied stimuli in a frequency range (45-90 Hz) that evokes discriminable percepts and carries most of the power of vibrissa vibration elicited by a range of complex fine textures. Both medium spiny neurons and evoked potentials showed tactile responses that were modulated by slow wave oscillations. Furthermore, medium spiny neuron population responses represented stimulus frequency on par with previously reported behavioral benchmarks. Our results suggest that striatum encodes frequency information of vibrotactile stimuli which is dynamically modulated by ongoing brain state.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Exercise dependent increase in axon regeneration into peripheral nerve grafts by propriospinal but not sensory neurons after spinal cord injury is associated with modulation of regeneration-associated genes.

    PubMed

    Sachdeva, Rahul; Theisen, Catherine C; Ninan, Vinu; Twiss, Jeffery L; Houlé, John D

    2016-02-01

    Insufficient regeneration of central nervous system (CNS) axons contributes to persisting neurological dysfunction after spinal cord injury (SCI). Peripheral nerve grafts (PNGs) support regeneration by thousands of injured intraspinal axons and help them bypass some of the extracellular barriers that form after SCI. However this number represents but a small portion of the total number of axons that are injured. Here we tested if rhythmic sensory stimulation during cycling exercise would boost the intrinsic regenerative state of neurons to enhance axon regeneration into PNGs after a lower thoracic (T12) spinal transection of adult rats. Using True Blue retrograde tracing, we show that 4 weeks of cycling improves regeneration into a PNG from lumbar interneurons but not by primary sensory neurons. The majority of neurons that regenerate their axon are within 5 mm of the lesion and their number increased 70% with exercise. Importantly propriospinal neurons in more distant regions (5-20 mm from the lesion) that routinely exhibit very limited regeneration responded to exercise by increasing the number of regenerating neurons by 900%. There was no exercise-associated increase in regeneration from sensory neurons. Analyses using fluorescent in situ hybridization showed that this increase in regenerative response is associated with changes in levels of mRNAs encoding the regeneration associated genes (RAGs) GAP43, β-actin and Neuritin. While propriospinal neurons showed increased mRNA levels in response to SCI alone and then to grafting and exercise, sensory neurons did not respond to SCI, but there was a response to the presence of a PNG. Thus, exercise is a non-invasive approach to modulate gene expression in injured neurons leading to an increase in regeneration. This sets the stage for future studies to test whether exercise will promote axon outgrowth beyond the PNG and reconnection with spinal cord neurons, thereby demonstrating a potential clinical application of

  10. Growth hormone prevents neuronal loss in the aged rat hippocampus.

    PubMed

    Azcoitia, Iñigo; Perez-Martin, Margarita; Salazar, Veronica; Castillo, Carmen; Ariznavarreta, Carmen; Garcia-Segura, Luis M; Tresguerres, Jesus A F

    2005-05-01

    Decline of growth hormone (GH) with aging is associated to memory and cognitive alterations. In this study, the number of neurons in the hilus of the dentate gyrus has been assessed in male and female Wistar rats at 3, 6, 12, 14, 18, 22 and 24 months of age, using the optical fractionator method. Male rats had more neurons than females at all the ages studied. Significant neuronal loss was observed in both sexes between 22 and 24 months of age. In a second experiment, 22 month-old male and female rats were treated for 10 weeks with 2 mg/kg/day of GH or saline. At 24 months of age, animals treated with GH had more neurons in the hilus than animals treated with saline. These findings indicate that GH is neuroprotective in old animals and that its administration may ameliorate neuronal alterations associated to aging.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. Temperature sensitivity of neurones in slices of the rat spinal cord.

    PubMed Central

    Pehl, U; Schmid, H A; Simon, E

    1997-01-01

    1. The inherent temperature sensitivity of 343 spontaneously active neurones recorded from rat spinal cord (SC) slices was investigated electrophysiologically. Recordings were made from 321 neurons from transverse and 22 neurons from longitudinal slices and their thermosensitivity was determined by relating changes in firing rate to changes in slice temperature. 2. Of the neurones from transverse slices, 53% were warm sensitive, 2% were cold sensitive and 45% were temperature insensitive. In longitudinal slices, 68% were warm sensitive and the remaining neurones were temperature insensitive. 3. When classified according to their recording sites in transverse slices, warm-sensitive neurones in laminae I and II had the same mean temperature coefficient compared with those recorded from lamina X, despite the fact that the latter had a significantly higher spontaneous activity. 4. The intrinsic temperature sensitivity of the majority of warm-sensitive neurones was confirmed by blocking their synaptic input. 5. A transient overshoot in activity, i.e. a dynamic response characteristic following rapid temperature stimuli (0.4 degree C s-1) was observed in 73% of the warm-sensitive and 59% of the temperature-insensitive neurones in laminae I and II in response to rapid warming, but only rarely (< 10%) in lamina X. 6. Temperature-sensitive SC neurones share response characteristics with temperature-sensitive neurones in the preoptic and anterior hypothalamic (PO/AH) area and with peripheral temperature receptors. Functionally, these neurones may represent the cellular basis for the temperature sensory function of the spinal cord that has been well characterized in vivo in homeothermic species. PMID:9032695

  18. Functional changes in piriform cortex pyramidal neurons in the chronic methamphetamine-treated rat.

    PubMed

    Hori, Nobuaki; Kadota, Tomoko; Akaike, Norio

    2015-01-01

    Chronic treatment of rats with methamphetamine (MAP) causes a range of functional changes to the central nervous system (CNS), including a toxicity that is widespread throughout the brain (Frost and Cadet 2000; Fasihpour et al. 2013). In this report, we examined the effect of chronic MAP treatment on pyramidal neurons of the rat piriform cortex, an area involved in sensory processing, associative learning and a model system for studies on synaptic plasticity. MAP treatment significantly depolarized the membrane potential and decreased neuronal input resistance. Furthermore, the voltage-dependence of both AMPA and NMDA responses was disturbed by chronic MAP treatment, and the extent of long-term potentiation (LTP) was decreased. Morphological changes of MAP-treated rat pyramidal neurons were observed as blebbing of the dendrite trees. The changes we observed represent detrimental effects on the function of piriform cortical neurons further illustrating deficits in synaptic plasticity extend beyond the hippocampus. These changes may contribute to behavioural deficits in chronic MAP-treated animals.

  19. Inhibition of acid-sensing ion channels by chlorogenic acid in rat dorsal root ganglion neurons.

    PubMed

    Qu, Zu-Wei; Liu, Ting-Ting; Qiu, Chun-Yu; Li, Jia-Da; Hu, Wang-Ping

    2014-05-01

    Chlorogenic acid (CGA) is one of the most abundant polyphenol compounds in the human diet. Recently, it is demonstrated to have potent antinociceptive effect. However, little is understood about the mechanism underlying CGA analgesia. Here, we have found that CGA can exert an inhibitory effect on the functional activity of native acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs) in rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons. First, CGA decreased the peak amplitude of proton-gated currents mediated by ASICs in a concentration-dependent manner. Second, CGA shifted the proton concentration-response curve downward, with a decrease of 41.76 ± 8.65% in the maximum current response to protons but with no significant change in the pH0.5 value. Third, CGA altered acidosis-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 administered CGA attenuated nociceptive response to intraplantar injection of acetic acid in rats. ASICs are distributed in peripheral sensory neurons and participate in nociception. Our findings CGA inhibition of native ASICs indicated that CGA may exert analgesic action by modulating ASICs in the primary afferent neurons, which revealed a novel cellular and molecular mechanism underlying CGA analgesia.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. Effects of cytotoxic deletions of somatic sensory cortex in fetal rats.

    PubMed

    Yurkewicz, L; Valentino, K L; Floeter, M K; Fleshman, J W; Jones, E G

    1984-01-01

    Pregnant rats were injected on the 14th day of gestation with the cytotoxic drug methylazoxymethanol acetate. This compound causes the death of neural precursor cells that were synthesizing DNA at the time of injection. After birth, the progeny of treated mothers grew to maturity with a neocortex that was greatly reduced in area by the death of all cells, particularly at the frontal and occipital poles but at medial and lateral margins of neocortex as well. In the remaining cortex layers II through IV failed to develop. The experiment deprived growing thalamocortical axons, which innervate the somatic sensory cortex late in development, of part of their normal target area and of a substantial number of their definitive target cells. It also deprived them of any cues they might have received from these target cells migrating through them as the axons accumulate beneath the cortical plate. Anatomical experiments indicated that, despite these defects, thalamocortical axons could still colonize the sensorimotor areas and form synapses in their typically bilaminar pattern, though the outer, denser lamina of terminations occurred abnormally at the level of the apices of layer V pyramidal cell bodies. Receptive field mapping of single and multiunit responses in the somatic sensory region showed brisk responses and receptive fields of normal size. It also indicated the formation of a body map that was topographically intact except for deletions at its periphery; that is, a total map was not compressed into a smaller area. This suggests that somatic sensory thalamocortical fibers recognize only remaining cortical target cells in appropriate fields. Moreover, successful ones among them seem to recognize neighborhood relations and conserve synaptic space at the expense of those that would have innervated the deleted peripheral parts of the area. Pyramidal neurons in the remaining cortical layers and in ectopic islands of cells that had incompletely migrated from the

  6. Tannic acid modulates excitability of sensory neurons and nociceptive behavior and the Ionic mechanism.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xuan; Zhang, Huiran; Zhou, Najing; Xu, Jiaxi; Si, Man; Jia, Zhanfeng; Du, Xiaona; Zhang, Hailin

    2015-10-05

    M/Kv7 K(+) channels, Ca(2+)-activated Cl(-) channels (CaCCs) and voltage gated Na(+) channels expressed in dorsal root ganglia (DRG) play an important role in nociception. Tannic acid has been proposed to be involved in multiple beneficial health effects; tannic acid has also been described to be analgesic. However the underlying mechanism is unknown. In this study, we investigated the effects of tannic acid on M/Kv7 K(+), Na(+) currents and CaCCs, and the effects on bradykinin-induced nociceptive behavior. A perforated patch technique was used. The bradykinin-induced rat pain model was used to assess the analgesic effect of tannic acid. We demonstrated that tannic acid enhanced M/Kv7 K(+) currents but inhibited bradykinin-induced activation of CaCC/TMEM16A currents in rat small DRG neurons. Tannic acid potentiated Kv7.2/7.3 and Kv7.2 currents expressed in HEK293B cells, with an EC50 of 7.38 and 5.40 µM, respectively. Tannic acid inhibited TTX-sensitive and TTX-insensitive currents of small DRG neurons with IC50 of 5.25 and 8.43 µM, respectively. Tannic acid also potently suppressed the excitability of small DRG neurons. Furthermore, tannic acid greatly reduced bradykinin-induced pain behavior of rats. This study thus demonstrates that tannic acid is an activator of M/Kv7 K(+) and an inhibitor of voltage-gated Na(+) channels and CaCC/TMEM16A, which may underlie its inhibitory effects on excitability of DRG neurons and its analgesic effect. Tannic acid could be a useful agent in treatment of inflammatory pain conditions such as osteoarthritis, rheumatic arthritis and burn pain.

  7. MrgC agonism at central terminals of primary sensory neurons inhibits neuropathic pain.

    PubMed

    He, Shao-Qiu; Li, Zhe; Chu, Yu-Xia; Han, Liang; Xu, Qian; Li, Man; Yang, Fei; Liu, Qin; Tang, Zongxiang; Wang, Yun; Hin, Niyada; Tsukamoto, Takashi; Slusher, Barbara; Tiwari, Vinod; Shechter, Ronen; Wei, Feng; Raja, Srinivasa N; Dong, Xinzhong; Guan, Yun

    2014-03-01

    Chronic neuropathic pain is often refractory to current pharmacotherapies. The rodent Mas-related G-protein-coupled receptor subtype C (MrgC) shares substantial homogeneity with its human homologue, MrgX1, and is located specifically in small-diameter dorsal root ganglion neurons. However, evidence regarding the role of MrgC in chronic pain conditions has been disparate and inconsistent. Accordingly, the therapeutic value of MrgX1 as a target for pain treatment in humans remains uncertain. Here, we found that intrathecal injection of BAM8-22 (a 15-amino acid peptide MrgC agonist) and JHU58 (a novel dipeptide MrgC agonist) inhibited both mechanical and heat hypersensitivity in rats after an L5 spinal nerve ligation (SNL). Intrathecal JHU58-induced pain inhibition was dose dependent in SNL rats. Importantly, drug efficacy was lost in Mrg-cluster gene knockout (Mrg KO) mice and was blocked by gene silencing with intrathecal MrgC siRNA and by a selective MrgC receptor antagonist in SNL rats, suggesting that the drug action is MrgC dependent. Further, in a mouse model of trigeminal neuropathic pain, microinjection of JHU58 into ipsilateral subnucleus caudalis inhibited mechanical hypersensitivity in wild-type but not Mrg KO mice. Finally, JHU58 attenuated the miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents frequency both in medullary dorsal horn neurons of mice after trigeminal nerve injury and in lumbar spinal dorsal horn neurons of mice after SNL. We provide multiple lines of evidence that MrgC agonism at spinal but not peripheral sites may constitute a novel pain inhibitory mechanism that involves inhibition of peripheral excitatory inputs onto postsynaptic dorsal horn neurons in different rodent models of neuropathic pain.

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. Attenuated cold defense responses in orexin neuron-ablated rats

    PubMed Central

    Mohammed, Mazher; Yanagisawa, Masashi; Blessing, William; Ootsuka, Youichirou

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Recent reports of the use of transgenic mice targeting orexin neurons show that the ablation of orexin neurons in the hypothalamus causes hypothermia during cold exposure. This suggests the importance of orexin neurons for cold-induced autonomic and physiological defense responses, including brown adipose tissue (BAT) thermogenesis and vasoconstriction in thermoregulatory cutaneous vascular bed. The present study investigated whether the ablation of orexin neurons attenuated cold-elicited BAT thermogenesis and cutaneous vasoconstriction. The study took advantage of our established conscious rat experimental model of direct measurement of BAT and body temperature and tail cutaneous blood flow. The study used transgenic orexin neurons-ablated (ORX-AB) rats and wild type (WT) rats. BAT temperature and tail artery blood flow with pre-implanted probes were measured, as well as behavioral locomotor activity under conscious free-moving condition. Gradually, the ambient temperature was decreased to below 5°C. ORX-AB rats showed an attenuated cold-induced BAT thermogenesis and behavioral activity, and delayed tail vasoconstriction. An ambient temperature that initiated BAT thermogenesis and established full cutaneous vasoconstriction was 14.1 ± 1.9 °C, which was significantly lower than 20.5 ± 1.9 °C, the corresponding value in WT rats (n = 10, P < 0.01). The results from this study suggest that the integrity of orexin-synthesising neurons in thermoregulatory networks is important for full expression of the cold defense responses. PMID:28349086

  12. Sensory and motor characterization in the postnatal valproate rat model of autism.

    PubMed

    Reynolds, Stacey; Millette, Alexandre; Devine, Darragh P

    2012-01-01

    Although autism is diagnosed according to three core features of social deficits, communication impairments, and repetitive or stereotyped behaviors, other behavioral features such as sensory and motor impairments are present in more than 70% of individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Exposure of rat pups to the teratogen valproate during sensitive periods of brain development has been shown to elicit behavioral features associated with autism diagnosis and has been proposed as a valid animal model of the disorder. The purpose of this study was to characterize sensory and motor performance in rats postnatally treated with valproate. Thirty-four rat pups were injected with either valproate (150 mg/kg) or saline on postnatal days 6-12. Auditory and tactile startle as well as auditory sensory gating was assessed during both the juvenile and adolescent stages of development; motor testing was conducted during late adolescence and included a sunflower seed eating task and a vermicelli handling task. Valproate-treated rats were underresponsive to auditory stimuli, showed deficits in auditory sensory gating, and demonstrated impairments in motor speed and performance. These findings suggest that postnatal valproate treatment elicits sensory and motor features often seen in individuals with ASD. Further, the hyposensitivity seen in postnatally valproate-treated rats contrasted with hypersensitivity previously reported in prenatally valproate-exposed rats. This suggests that timing of teratogenic exposure during early brain development may be important to consider when investigating the neurobiological basis of sensorimotor impairments in ASD.

  13. Serotonin transporter messenger RNA expression in neural crest-derived structures and sensory pathways of the developing rat embryo.

    PubMed

    Hansson, S R; Mezey, E; Hoffman, B J

    1999-03-01

    A growing body of evidence suggests that serotonin plays an important role in the early development of both neural and non-neural tissues from vertebrate and invertebrate species. Serotonin is removed from the extracellular space by the cocaine- and antidepressant-sensitive serotonin transporter, thereby limiting its action on receptors. In situ hybridization histochemistry was used to delineate serotonin transporter messenger RNA expression during rat embryonic development. Serotonin transporter messenger RNA was widely expressed beginning prior to organogenesis and throughout the second half of gestation. Strikingly, serotonin transporter messenger RNA was detected in neural crest cells, some of which respond to serotonin in vitro, and neural crest-derived tissues, such as autonomic ganglia, tooth primordia, adrenal medulla, chondrocytes and neuroepithelial cells, in the skin, heart, intestine and lung. Within the peripheral sensory pathways, two major cells types were serotonin transporter messenger RNA-positive: (i) sensory ganglionic neurons and (ii) neuroepithelial cells which serve as targets for the outgrowing sensory neurons. Several sensory organs (cochlear and retinal ganglionic cells, taste buds, whisker and hair follicles) contained serotonin transporter messenger RNA by late gestation. The expression of serotonin transporter messenger RNA throughout the sensory pathways from central nervous system relay stations [Hansson S. R. et al. (1997) Neuroscience 83, 1185-1201; Lebrand C. et al. (1996) Neuron 17, 823-835] to sensory nerves and target organs as shown in this study suggests that serotonin may regulate peripheral synaptogenesis, and thereby influence later processing of sensory stimuli. If the early detection of serotonin transporter messenger RNA in skin and gastrointestinal and airway epithelia correlates with protein activity, it may permit establishment of a serotonin concentration gradient across epithelia, either from serotonin in the

  14. Finding and Not Finding Rat Perirhinal Neuronal Responses to Novelty

    PubMed Central

    Muller, Robert U.; Brown, Malcolm W.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT There is much evidence that the perirhinal cortex of both rats and monkeys is important for judging the relative familiarity of visual stimuli. In monkeys many studies have found that a proportion of perirhinal neurons respond more to novel than familiar stimuli. There are fewer studies of perirhinal neuronal responses in rats, and those studies based on exploration of objects, have raised into question the encoding of stimulus familiarity by rat perirhinal neurons. For this reason, recordings of single neuronal activity were made from the perirhinal cortex of rats so as to compare responsiveness to novel and familiar stimuli in two different behavioral situations. The first situation was based upon that used in “paired viewing” experiments that have established rat perirhinal differences in immediate early gene expression for novel and familiar visual stimuli displayed on computer monitors. The second situation was similar to that used in the spontaneous object recognition test that has been widely used to establish the involvement of rat perirhinal cortex in familiarity discrimination. In the first condition 30 (25%) of 120 perirhinal neurons were visually responsive; of these responsive neurons 19 (63%) responded significantly differently to novel and familiar stimuli. In the second condition eight (53%) of 15 perirhinal neurons changed activity significantly in the vicinity of objects (had “object fields”); however, for none (0%) of these was there a significant activity change related to the familiarity of an object, an incidence significantly lower than for the first condition. Possible reasons for the difference are discussed. It is argued that the failure to find recognition‐related neuronal responses while exploring objects is related to its detectability by the measures used, rather than the absence of all such signals in perirhinal cortex. Indeed, as shown by the results, such signals are found when a different methodology is used.

  15. A Light-Addressable Potentiometric Sensor for Odorant Detection Using Single Bioengineered Olfactory Sensory Neurons as Sensing Element.

    PubMed

    Wu, Chunsheng; Du, Liping; Tian, Yulan; Zhang, Xi; Wang, Ping

    2017-01-01

    A light-addressable potentiometric sensor (LAPS), a silicon-based surface potential detector, is combined with bioengineered olfactory sensory neurons (OSN) for odorant detection. A LAPS chip is used as a transducer to monitor cell membrane potential changes. In addition, a focused movable laser with a diameter comparable to cell sizes is employed to select the desirable single cell for measurement under a microscope. Bioengineered OSNs are coupled to the LAPS surface and employed as sensing elements, which are prepared by the expression of an olfactory receptor of C. elegans, ODR-10, on the plasma membrane of rat primary OSNs via transient transfection. The responses of bioengineered OSNs to diacetyl, isoamyl acetate, and acetic acid are monitored by extracellular recording using the LAPS chip. Features of the recorded extracellular potential firings are analyzed in frequency and time domains. We have shown that bioengineered OSNs can generate specific response signals upon the stimulation of diacetyl, which is the natural ligand of ODR-10. Moreover, different concentrations of diacetyl can elicit different temporal firing patterns in bioengineered OSNs, which permits the concentration detection of specific odorant molecules in solution.

  16. Chronic CXCL10 Alters Neuronal Properties in Rat Hippocampal Culture

    PubMed Central

    Cho, Jungsook; Nelson, Thomas E.; Bajova, Hilda; Gruol, Donna L.

    2009-01-01

    The chemokine CXCL10 is expressed in the central nervous system (CNS) during neuroinflammatory conditions. Neurons express CXCR3, the receptor for CXCL10, and neuronal function has been shown to be altered by acute exposure to CXCL10. Little is known about the effects of chronic exposure to CXCL10 on neuronal function. Results from our studies show that chronic exposure of cultured rat hippocampal neurons to CXCL10 results in altered levels of protein for GABA and glutamate receptors and altered synaptic network activity. These effects of CXCL10 may contribute to altered CNS function that occurs in some chronic neuroinflammatory conditions. PMID:19167097

  17. 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

  18. Nerve growth factor treatment of sensory neuron primary cultures causes elevated levels of the mRNA encoding the ATP synthase beta-subunit as detected by a novel PCR-based differential cloning method.

    PubMed

    Kendall, G; Ensor, E; Crankson, H D; Latchman, D S

    1996-03-01

    The mRNA encoding the rat ATP synthase beta-subunit was rapidly induced by nerve growth factor, within 60 min, in cultured adult rat dorsal root ganglion neurons. ATP synthase beta-subunit cDNA clones were isolated from a lambda library. The library was constructed using rat dorsal root ganglion mRNA that was differentially screened with cDNA-derived probes from untreated and nerve-growth-factor-treated primary cultures of adult rat dorsal root ganglion sensory neurons. Radiolabelled probes were made from submicrogram quantities of RNA, by a novel PCR-based technique, which allows small amounts of primary tissue to be used for library screening. The use of this technique in isolating novel differentially expressed mRNAs is discussed.

  19. 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.

  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. 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.

  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. Characterization of pruriceptive trigeminothalamic tract neurons in rats.

    PubMed

    Moser, Hannah R; Giesler, Glenn J

    2014-04-01

    Rodent models of facial itch and pain provide a valuable tool for distinguishing between behaviors related to each sensation. In rats, pruritogens applied to the face elicit scratching using the hindlimb while algogens elicit wiping using the forelimb. We wished to determine the role of trigeminothalamic tract (VTT) neurons in carrying information regarding facial itch and pain to the forebrain. We have characterized responses to facially applied pruritogens (serotonin, BAM8-22, chloroquine, histamine, capsaicin, and cowhage) and noxious stimuli in 104 VTT neurons recorded from anesthetized rats. Each VTT neuron had a mechanically sensitive cutaneous receptive field on the ipsilateral face. All pruriceptive VTT neurons also responded to noxious mechanical and/or thermal stimulation. Over half of VTT neurons responsive to noxious stimuli also responded to at least one pruritogen. Each tested pruritogen, with the exception of cowhage, produced an increase in discharge rate in a subset of VTT neurons. The response to each pruritogen was characterized, including maximum discharge rate, response duration, and spike timing dynamics. Pruriceptive VTT neurons were recorded from throughout superficial and deep layers of the spinal trigeminal nucleus and were shown to project via antidromic mapping to the ventroposterior medial nucleus or posterior thalamic nuclei. These results indicate that pruriceptive VTT neurons are a subset of polymodal nociceptive VTT neurons and characterize a system conducive to future experiments regarding the similarities and differences between facial itch and pain.

  5. 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.

  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 Factors NGF, GDNF and NTN Selectively Modulate HSV1 and HSV2 Lytic Infection and Reactivation in Primary Adult Sensory and Autonomic Neurons.

    PubMed

    Yanez, Andy A; Harrell, Telvin; Sriranganathan, Heather J; Ives, Angela M; Bertke, Andrea S

    2017-02-07

    Herpes simplex viruses (HSV1 and HSV2) establish latency in peripheral ganglia after ocular or genital infection, and can reactivate to produce different patterns and frequencies of recurrent disease. Previous studies showed that nerve growth factor (NGF) maintains HSV1 latency in embryonic sympathetic and sensory neurons. However, adult sensory neurons are no longer dependent on NGF for survival, some populations cease expression of NGF receptors postnatally, and the viruses preferentially establish latency in different populations of sensory neurons responsive to other neurotrophic factors (NTFs). Thus, NGF may not maintain latency in adult sensory neurons. To identify NTFs important for maintaining HSV1 and HSV2 latency in adult neurons, we investigated acute and latently-infected primary adult sensory trigeminal (TG) and sympathetic superior cervical ganglia (SCG) after NTF removal. NGF and glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) deprivation induced HSV1 reactivation in adult sympathetic neurons. In adult sensory neurons, however, neurturin (NTN) and GDNF deprivation induced HSV1 and HSV2 reactivation, respectively, while NGF deprivation had no effects. Furthermore, HSV1 and HSV2 preferentially reactivated from neurons expressing GFRα2 and GFRα1, the high affinity receptors for NTN and GDNF, respectively. Thus, NTN and GDNF play a critical role in selective maintenance of HSV1 and HSV2 latency in primary adult sensory neurons.

  8. Neurotrophic Factors NGF, GDNF and NTN Selectively Modulate HSV1 and HSV2 Lytic Infection and Reactivation in Primary Adult Sensory and Autonomic Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Yanez, Andy A.; Harrell, Telvin; Sriranganathan, Heather J.; Ives, Angela M.; Bertke, Andrea S.

    2017-01-01

    Herpes simplex viruses (HSV1 and HSV2) establish latency in peripheral ganglia after ocular or genital infection, and can reactivate to produce different patterns and frequencies of recurrent disease. Previous studies showed that nerve growth factor (NGF) maintains HSV1 latency in embryonic sympathetic and sensory neurons. However, adult sensory neurons are no longer dependent on NGF for survival, some populations cease expression of NGF receptors postnatally, and the viruses preferentially establish latency in different populations of sensory neurons responsive to other neurotrophic factors (NTFs). Thus, NGF may not maintain latency in adult sensory neurons. To identify NTFs important for maintaining HSV1 and HSV2 latency in adult neurons, we investigated acute and latently-infected primary adult sensory trigeminal (TG) and sympathetic superior cervical ganglia (SCG) after NTF removal. NGF and glial cell line-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) deprivation induced HSV1 reactivation in adult sympathetic neurons. In adult sensory neurons, however, neurturin (NTN) and GDNF deprivation induced HSV1 and HSV2 reactivation, respectively, while NGF deprivation had no effects. Furthermore, HSV1 and HSV2 preferentially reactivated from neurons expressing GFRα2 and GFRα1, the high affinity receptors for NTN and GDNF, respectively. Thus, NTN and GDNF play a critical role in selective maintenance of HSV1 and HSV2 latency in primary adult sensory neurons. PMID:28178213

  9. Inducible Gene Manipulations in Brain Serotonergic Neurons of Transgenic Rats

    PubMed Central

    Tews, Björn; Bartsch, Dusan

    2011-01-01

    The serotonergic (5-HT) system has been implicated in various physiological processes and neuropsychiatric disorders, but in many aspects its role in normal and pathologic brain function is still unclear. One reason for this might be the lack of appropriate animal models which can address the complexity of physiological and pathophysiological 5-HT functioning. In this respect, rats offer many advantages over mice as they have been the animal of choice for sophisticated neurophysiological and behavioral studies. However, only recently technologies for the targeted and tissue specific modification of rat genes - a prerequisite for a detailed study of the 5-HT system - have been successfully developed. Here, we describe a rat transgenic system for inducible gene manipulations in 5-HT neurons. We generated a Cre driver line consisting of a tamoxifen-inducible CreERT2 recombinase under the control of mouse Tph2 regulatory sequences. Tissue-specific serotonergic Cre recombinase expression was detected in four transgenic TPH2-CreERT2 rat founder lines. For functional analysis of Cre-mediated recombination, we used a rat Cre reporter line (CAG-loxP.EGFP), in which EGFP is expressed after Cre-mediated removal of a loxP-flanked lacZ STOP cassette. We show an in-depth characterisation of this rat Cre reporter line and demonstrate its applicability for monitoring Cre-mediated recombination in all major neuronal subpopulations of the rat brain. Upon tamoxifen induction, double transgenic TPH2-CreERT2/CAG-loxP.EGFP rats show selective and efficient EGFP expression in 5-HT neurons. Without tamoxifen administration, EGFP is only expressed in few 5-HT neurons which confirms minimal background recombination. This 5-HT neuron specific CreERT2 line allows Cre-mediated, inducible gene deletion or gene overexpression in transgenic rats which provides new opportunities to decipher the complex functions of the mammalian serotonergic system. PMID:22140568

  10. Surgical extraction of human dorsal root ganglia from organ donors and preparation of primary sensory neuron cultures

    PubMed Central

    Valtcheva, Manouela V.; Copits, Bryan A.; Davidson, Steve; Sheahan, Tayler D.; Pullen, Melanie Y.; McCall, Jordan G.; Dikranian, Krikor; Gereau, Robert W.

    2016-01-01

    Primary cultures of rodent sensory neurons are widely used to investigate the cellular and molecular mechanisms involved in pain, itch, nerve injury, and regeneration. However, translation of these preclinical findings may be greatly improved by direct validation in human tissues. We have developed an approach to extract and culture human sensory neurons in collaboration with a local organ procurement organization. Here we describe the surgical procedure for extraction of human dorsal root ganglia (hDRG) and the necessary modifications to existing culture techniques to prepare viable adult human sensory neurons for functional studies. Dissociated sensory neurons can be maintained in culture for >10 days, and are amenable to electrophysiological recording, calcium imaging, and viral gene transfer. The entire process of extraction and culturing can be completed in less than 7 hours, and can be performed by trained graduate students. This approach can be applied at any institution with access to organ donors consenting to tissue donation for research and provides an invaluable resource for improving translational research. PMID:27606776

  11. Connexin expression in electrically coupled postnatal rat brain neurons

    PubMed Central

    Venance, Laurent; Rozov, Andrei; Blatow, Maria; Burnashev, Nail; Feldmeyer, Dirk; Monyer, Hannah

    2000-01-01

    Electrical coupling by gap junctions is an important form of cell-to-cell communication in early brain development. Whereas glial cells remain electrically coupled at postnatal stages, adult vertebrate neurons were thought to communicate mainly via chemical synapses. There is now accumulating evidence that in certain neuronal cell populations the capacity for electrical signaling by gap junction channels is still present in the adult. Here we identified electrically coupled pairs of neurons between postnatal days 12 and 18 in rat visual cortex, somatosensory cortex, and hippocampus. Notably, coupling was found both between pairs of inhibitory neurons and between inhibitory and excitatory neurons. Molecular analysis by single-cell reverse transcription–PCR revealed a differential expression pattern of connexins in these identified neurons. PMID:10944183

  12. Whisker row deprivation affects the flow of sensory information through rat barrel cortex

    PubMed Central

    Jacob, Vincent; Mitani, Akinori; Toyoizumi, Taro

    2016-01-01

    Whisker trimming causes substantial reorganization of neuronal response properties in barrel cortex. However, little is known about experience-dependent rerouting of sensory processing following sensory deprivation. To address this, we performed in vivo intracellular recordings from layers 2/3 (L2/3), layer 4 (L4), layer 5 regular-spiking (L5RS), and L5 intrinsically bursting (L5IB) neurons and measured their multiwhisker receptive field at the level of spiking activity, membrane potential, and synaptic conductance before and after sensory deprivation. We used Chernoff information to quantify the “sensory information” contained in the firing patterns of cells in response to spared and deprived whisker stimulation. In the control condition, information for flanking-row and same-row whiskers decreased in the order L4, L2/3, L5IB, L5RS. However, after whisker-row deprivation, spared flanking-row whisker information was reordered to L4, L5RS, L5IB, L2/3. Sensory information from the trimmed whiskers was reduced and delayed in L2/3 and L5IB neurons, whereas sensory information from spared whiskers was increased and advanced in L4 and L5RS neurons. Sensory information from spared whiskers was increased in L5IB neurons without a latency change. L5RS cells exhibited the largest changes in sensory information content through an atypical plasticity combining a significant decrease in spontaneous activity and an increase in a short-latency excitatory conductance. NEW & NOTEWORTHY Sensory cortical plasticity is usually quantified by changes in evoked firing rate. In this study we quantified plasticity by changes in sensory detection performance using Chernoff information and receiver operating characteristic analysis. We found that whisker deprivation causes a change in information flow within the cortical layers and that layer 5 regular-spiking cells, despite showing only a small potentiation of short-latency input, show the greatest increase in information content for

  13. Induction of bilateral plasticity in sensory cortical maps by small unilateral cortical infarcts in rats.

    PubMed

    Reinecke, S; Dinse, H R; Reinke, H; Witte, O W

    2003-02-01

    Behavioural impairments caused by brain lesions show a considerable, though often incomplete, recovery. It is hypothesized that cortical and subcortical plasticity of sensory representations contribute to this recovery. In the hindpaw representation of somatosensory cortex of adult rats we investigated the effects of focal unilateral cortical lesions on remote areas. Cortical lesions with a diameter of approximately 2 mm were induced in the parietal cortex by photothrombosis with the photosensitive dye Rose Bengal. Subsequently, animals were kept in standard cages for 7 days. On day seven, animals were anaesthetized and cutaneous receptive fields in the cortical hindpaw representations ipsi- and contralateral to the lesion were constructed from extracellular recordings of neurons in layer IV using glass microelectrodes. Receptive fields in the lesioned animals were compared to receptive fields measured in nonlesioned animals serving as controls. Quantitative analysis of receptive fields revealed a significant increase in size in the lesioned animals. This doubling in receptive field size was observed equally in the hemispheres ipsi- and contralateral to the lesion. The results indicate that the functional consequences of restricted cortical lesions are not limited to the area surrounding the lesion, but affect the cortical maps on the contralateral, nonlesioned hemisphere.

  14. Auto-oxidation products of epigallocatechin gallate activate TRPA1 and TRPV1 in sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Kurogi, Mako; Kawai, Yasushi; Nagatomo, Katsuhiro; Tateyama, Michihiro; Kubo, Yoshihiro; Saitoh, Osamu

    2015-01-01

    The sensation of astringency is elicited by catechins and their polymers in wine and tea. It has been considered that catechins in green tea are unstable and auto-oxidized to induce more astringent taste. Here, we examined how mammalian transient receptor potential V1 (TRPV1) and TRPA1, which are nociceptive sensors, are activated by green tea catechins during the auto-oxidation process. Neither TRPV1 nor TRPA1 could be activated by any of the freshly prepared catechin. When one of the major catechin, epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), was preincubated for 3h in Hank's balanced salt solution, it significantly activated both TRP channels expressed in HEK293 cells. Even after incubation, other catechins showed much less effects. Results suggest that only oxidative products of EGCG activate both TRPV1 and TRPA1. Dorsal root ganglion (DRG) sensory neurons were also activated by the incubated EGCG through TRPV1 and TRPA1 channels. Liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry revealed that theasinensins A and D are formed during incubation of EGCG. We found that purified theasinensin A activates both TRPV1 and TRPA1, and that it stimulates DRG neurons through TRPV1 and TRPA1 channels. Results suggested a possibility that TRPV1 and TRPA1 channels are involved in the sense of astringent taste of green tea.

  15. Odorant-dependent generation of nitric oxide in Mammalian olfactory sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Brunert, Daniela; Kurtenbach, Stefan; Isik, Sonnur; Benecke, Heike; Gisselmann, Günter; Schuhmann, Wolfgang; Hatt, Hanns; Wetzel, Christian H

    2009-01-01

    The gaseous signalling molecule nitric oxide (NO) is involved in various physiological processes including regulation of blood pressure, immunocytotoxicity and neurotransmission. In the mammalian olfactory bulb (OB), NO plays a role in the formation of olfactory memory evoked by pheromones as well as conventional odorants. While NO generated by the neuronal isoform of NO synthase (nNOS) regulates neurogenesis in the olfactory epithelium, NO has not been implicated in olfactory signal transduction. We now show the expression and function of the endothelial isoform of NO synthase (eNOS) in mature olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs) of adult mice. Using NO-sensitive micro electrodes, we show that stimulation liberates NO from isolated wild-type OSNs, but not from OSNs of eNOS deficient mice. Integrated electrophysiological recordings (electro-olfactograms or EOGs) from the olfactory epithelium of these mice show that NO plays a significant role in modulating adaptation. Evidence for the presence of eNOS in mature mammalian OSNs and its involvement in odorant adaptation implicates NO as an important new element involved in olfactory signal transduction. As a diffusible messenger, NO could also have additional functions related to cross adaptation, regeneration, and maintenance of MOE homeostasis.

  16. Odorant-Dependent Generation of Nitric Oxide in Mammalian Olfactory Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Brunert, Daniela; Kurtenbach, Stefan; Isik, Sonnur; Benecke, Heike; Gisselmann, Günter; Schuhmann, Wolfgang; Hatt, Hanns; Wetzel, Christian H.

    2009-01-01

    The gaseous signalling molecule nitric oxide (NO) is involved in various physiological processes including regulation of blood pressure, immunocytotoxicity and neurotransmission. In the mammalian olfactory bulb (OB), NO plays a role in the formation of olfactory memory evoked by pheromones as well as conventional odorants. While NO generated by the neuronal isoform of NO synthase (nNOS) regulates neurogenesis in the olfactory epithelium, NO has not been implicated in olfactory signal transduction. We now show the expression and function of the endothelial isoform of NO synthase (eNOS) in mature olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs) of adult mice. Using NO-sensitive micro electrodes, we show that stimulation liberates NO from isolated wild-type OSNs, but not from OSNs of eNOS deficient mice. Integrated electrophysiological recordings (electro-olfactograms or EOGs) from the olfactory epithelium of these mice show that NO plays a significant role in modulating adaptation. Evidence for the presence of eNOS in mature mammalian OSNs and its involvement in odorant adaptation implicates NO as an important new element involved in olfactory signal transduction. As a diffusible messenger, NO could also have additional functions related to cross adaptation, regeneration, and maintenance of MOE homeostasis. PMID:19430528

  17. Mycolactone-mediated neurite degeneration and functional effects in cultured human and rat DRG neurons

    PubMed Central

    Sinisi, M; Fox, M; MacQuillan, A; Quick, T; Korchev, Y; Bountra, C; McCarthy, T; Anand, P

    2016-01-01

    Background Mycolactone is a polyketide toxin secreted by the mycobacterium Mycobacterium ulcerans, responsible for the extensive hypoalgesic skin lesions characteristic of patients with Buruli ulcer. A recent pre-clinical study proposed that mycolactone may produce analgesia via activation of the angiotensin II type 2 receptor (AT2R). In contrast, AT2R antagonist EMA401 has shown analgesic efficacy in animal models and clinical trials for neuropathic pain. We therefore investigated the morphological and functional effects of mycolactone in cultured human and rat dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons and the role of AT2R using EMA401. Primary sensory neurons were prepared from avulsed cervical human DRG and rat DRG; 24 h after plating, neurons were incubated for 24 to 96 h with synthetic mycolactone A/B, followed by immunostaining with antibodies to PGP9.5, Gap43, β tubulin, or Mitotracker dye staining. Acute functional effects were examined by measuring capsaicin responses with calcium imaging in DRG neuronal cultures treated with mycolactone. Results Morphological effects: Mycolactone-treated cultures showed dramatically reduced numbers of surviving neurons and non-neuronal cells, reduced Gap43 and β tubulin expression, degenerating neurites and reduced cell body diameter, compared with controls. Dose-related reduction of neurite length was observed in mycolactone-treated cultures. Mitochondria were distributed throughout the length of neurites and soma of control neurons, but clustered in the neurites and soma of mycolactone-treated neurons. Functional effects: Mycolactone-treated human and rat DRG neurons showed dose-related inhibition of capsaicin responses, which were reversed by calcineurin inhibitor cyclosporine and phosphodiesterase inhibitor 3-isobutyl-1-Methylxanthine, indicating involvement of cAMP/ATP reduction. The morphological and functional effects of mycolactone were not altered by Angiotensin II or AT2R antagonist EMA401. Conclusion Mycolactone

  18. A re-evaluation of 9-HODE activity at TRPV1 channels in comparison with anandamide: enantioselectivity and effects at other TRP channels and in sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    De Petrocellis, Luciano; Schiano Moriello, Aniello; Imperatore, Roberta; Cristino, Luigia; Starowicz, Katarzyna; Di Marzo, Vincenzo

    2012-01-01

    Background and Purpose Two oxidation products of linoleic acid, 9- and 13-hydroxy-octadecadienoic acids (HODEs), have recently been suggested to act as endovanilloids, that is, endogenous agonists of transient receptor potential vanilloid-1 (TRPV1) channels, thereby contributing to inflammatory hyperalgesia in rats. However, HODE activity at rat TRPV1 in comparison with the best established endovanilloid, anandamide, and its enantioselectivity and selectivity towards other TRP channels that are also abundant in sensory neurons have never been investigated. Experimental Approach We studied the effect of 9(R)-HODE, 9(S)-HODE, (+/–)13-HODE, 15(S)-hydroxyanandamide and anandamide on [Ca2+]i in HEK-293 cells stably expressing the rat or human recombinant TRPV1, or rat recombinant TRPV2, TRPA1 or TRPM8, and also the effect of 9(S)-HODE in rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons by calcium imaging. Key Results Anandamide and 15(S)-hydroxyanandamide were the most potent endovanilloids at human TRPV1, whereas 9(S)-HODE was approximately threefold less efficacious and 75- and 3-fold less potent, respectively, and did not perform much better at rat TRPV1. The 9(R)-HODE and (+/–)13-HODE were almost inactive at TRPV1. Unlike anandamide and 15(S)-hydroxyanandamide, all HODEs were very weak at desensitizing TRPV1 to the action of capsaicin, but activated rat TRPV2 [only (+/–)13-HODE] and rat TRPA1, and antagonized rat TRPM8, at concentrations higher than those required to activate TRPV1. Finally, 9(S)-HODE elevated [Ca2+]i in DRG neurons almost exclusively in capsaicin-sensitive cells but only at concentrations between 25 and 100 μM. Conclusions and Implications The present data suggest that HODEs are less important endovanilloids than anandamide. Linked Articles This article is part of a themed section on Cannabinoids. To view the other articles in this section visit http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bph.2012.167.issue-8 PMID:22861649

  19. Effects of spinally administered adenine on dorsal horn neuronal responses in a rat model of inflammation.

    PubMed

    Matthews, Elizabeth A; Dickenson, Anthony H

    2004-02-19

    A novel G-protein-coupled receptor with adenine identified as the endogenous ligand has recently been described. In vivo electrophysiological techniques in the rat were used to record the response of dorsal horn neurones in response to transcutaneous electrical stimulation to the hindpaw receptive field. Spinal adenine (1-1000 microg) exerted facilitatory effects on the electrically-evoked neuronal responses, in a mildly dose-related manner. After establishment of carrageenan-induced inflammation to the hindpaw this excitatory effect of adenine was still apparent, yet reduced. C-fibre-evoked responses and other nociceptive related measures were most susceptible to the effects of adenine, whereas non-nociceptive Abeta-fibre evoked activity remained unaffected. Thus, activation of the adenine receptor site, via spinally applied adenine, suggests a pronociceptive role in nociceptive sensory transmission.

  20. Anatomical and molecular consequences of Unilateral Naris Closure on two populations of olfactory sensory neurons expressing defined odorant receptors.

    PubMed

    Molinas, Adrien; Aoudé, Imad; Soubeyre, Vanessa; Tazir, Bassim; Cadiou, Hervé; Grosmaitre, Xavier

    2016-07-28

    Mammalian olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs), the primary elements of the olfactory system, are located in the olfactory epithelium lining the nasal cavity. Exposed to the environment, their lifespan is short. Consequently, OSNs are regularly regenerated and several reports show that activity strongly modulates their development and regeneration: the peripheral olfactory system can adjust to the amount of stimulus through compensatory mechanisms. Unilateral naris occlusion (UNO) was frequently used to investigate this mechanism at the entire epithelium level. However, there is little data regarding the effects of UNO at the cellular level, especially on individual neuronal populations expressing a defined odorant receptor. Here, using UNO during the first three postnatal weeks, we analyzed the anatomical and molecular consequences of sensory deprivation in OSNs populations expressing the MOR23 and M71 receptors. The density of MOR23-expressing neurons is decreased in the closed side while UNO does not affect the density of M71-expressing neurons. Using Real Time qPCR on isolated neurons, we observed that UNO modulates the transcript levels for transduction pathway proteins (odorant receptors, CNGA2, PDE1c). The transcripts modulated by UNO will differ between populations depending on the receptor expressed. These results suggest that sensory deprivation will have different effects on different OSNs' populations. As a consequence, early experience will shape the functional properties of OSNs differently depending on the type of odorant receptor they express.

  1. Live-imaging of PKC translocation in Sf9 cells and in aplysia sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Farah, Carole A; Sossin, Wayne S

    2011-04-06

    Protein kinase Cs (PKCs) are serine threonine kinases that play a central role in regulating a wide variety of cellular processes such as cell growth and learning and memory. There are four known families of PKC isoforms in vertebrates: classical PKCs (α, βI, βII and γ), novel type I PKCs (ε and η), novel type II PKCs (δ and θ), and atypical PKCs (ζ and ι). The classical PKCs are activated by Ca(2+) and diacylclycerol (DAG), while the novel PKCs are activated by DAG, but are Ca(2+)-independent. The atypical PKCs are activated by neither Ca(2+) nor DAG. In Aplysia californica, our model system to study memory formation, there are three nervous system specific PKC isoforms one from each major class, namely the conventional PKC Apl I, the novel type I PKC Apl II and the atypical PKC Apl III. PKCs are lipid-activated kinases and thus activation of classical and novel PKCs in response to extracellular signals has been frequently correlated with PKC translocation from the cytoplasm to the plasma membrane. Therefore, visualizing PKC translocation in real time in live cells has become an invaluable tool for elucidating the signal transduction pathways that lead to PKC activation. For instance, this technique has allowed for us to establish that different isoforms of PKC translocate under different conditions to mediate distinct types of synaptic plasticity and that serotonin (5HT) activation of PKC Apl II requires production of both DAG and phosphatidic acid (PA) for translocation (1-2). Importantly, the ability to visualize the same neuron repeatedly has allowed us, for example, to measure desensitization of the PKC response in exquisite detail (3). In this video, we demonstrate each step of preparing Sf9 cell cultures, cultures of Aplysia sensory neurons have been described in another video article (4), expressing fluorescently tagged PKCs in Sf9 cells and in Aplysia sensory neurons and live-imaging of PKC translocation in response to different activators using

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

    PubMed

    Edstrom, J P; Lukowiak, K D

    1985-10-01

    The effects of repetitive activity on action-potential shape in Aplysia californica pleural sensory cells are described. Action potentials were evoked by intracellular current injection at frequencies between 7.41 and 0.2 Hz. In contrast to other molluscan neurons having brief action potentials, it was found that at these firing rates the normally brief action potential develops a prominent shoulder or plateau during the repolarization phase. Higher stimulus rates broaden the action potential more rapidly and to a greater extent than lower stimulus rates. Inactivation is slow relative to activation; effects of 3-s 6-Hz trains are detectable after 1 min rest. The amplitude of the plateau voltage reaches a maximum of 50-70 mV at the highest stimulus rates tested. Frequency-dependent increases in action-potential duration measured at half-amplitude normally range between 6 and 15 ms. Cadmium, at concentrations between 0.05 and 0.5 mM, antagonizes frequency-dependent broadening. The increases in duration induced by repetitive activity are more sensitive to cadmium than are the increases in plateau amplitude. Tetraethylammonium, at concentrations between 0.5 and 10 mM, slightly increases the duration and amplitude of single action potentials. During repetitive activity at high stimulus rates the maximum duration and rate of broadening are both increased but the amplitude of the plateau potential is not affected by these tetraethylammonium concentrations. Above 10 mM, tetraethylammonium greatly increases the duration and amplitude of single action potentials as well as the rates of action-potential duration and amplitude increase during repetitive activity. These high tetraethylammonium concentrations also cause the normally smoothly increasing duration and amplitude to reach a maximum value early in a train and then decline slowly during the remainder of the train. The consequences of frequency-dependent spike broadening in these neurons have not yet been investigated

  3. 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

  4. Extracorporeal shockwaves induce the expression of ATF3 and GAP-43 in rat dorsal root ganglion neurons.

    PubMed

    Murata, Ryo; Ohtori, Seiji; Ochiai, Nobuyasu; Takahashi, Norimasa; Saisu, Takashi; Moriya, Hideshige; Takahashi, Kazuhisa; Wada, Yuichi

    2006-07-30

    Although extracorporeal shockwave has been applied in the treatment of various diseases, the biological basis for its analgesic effect remains unclear. Therefore, we investigated the dorsal root ganglion neurons of rats following shockwave exposure to the footpad to elucidate its effect on the peripheral nervous system. We used activating transcription factor 3 (ATF3) and growth-associated phosphoprotein (GAP-43) as markers for nerve injury and axonal regeneration, respectively. The average number of neurons immunoreactive for ATF3 increased significantly in the treated rats at all experimental time points, with 78.3% of those neurons also exhibiting immunoreactivity for GAP-43. Shockwave exposure induced injury of the sensory nerve fibers within the exposed area. This phenomenon may be linked to the desensitization of the exposure area, not the cause of pain, considering clinical research with a particular absence of painful adverse effect. Subsequent active axonal regeneration may account for the reinnervation of exposed area and the amelioration of the desensitization.

  5. Caenorhabditis elegans male sensory-motor neurons and dopaminergic support cells couple ejaculation and post-ejaculatory behaviors

    PubMed Central

    LeBoeuf, Brigitte; Correa, Paola; Jee, Changhoon; García, L René

    2014-01-01

    The circuit structure and function underlying post-coital male behaviors remain poorly understood. Using mutant analysis, laser ablation, optogenetics, and Ca2+ imaging, we observed that following C. elegans male copulation, the duration of post-coital lethargy is coupled to cellular events involved in ejaculation. We show that the SPV and SPD spicule-associated sensory neurons and the spicule socket neuronal support cells function with intromission circuit components, including the cholinergic SPC and PCB and the glutamatergic PCA sensory-motor neurons, to coordinate sex muscle contractions with initiation and continuation of sperm movement. Our observations suggest that the SPV and SPD and their associated dopamine-containing socket cells sense the intrauterine environment through cellular endings exposed at the spicule tips and regulate both sperm release into the hermaphrodite and the recovery from post-coital lethargy. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.02938.001 PMID:24915976

  6. Myelination and node of Ranvier formation on sensory neurons in a defined in vitro system

    PubMed Central

    Das, Mainak; Bhalkikar, Abhijeet; Wilson, Kerry; Stancescu, Maria; Lambert, Stephen; Hickman, James J.

    2016-01-01

    One of the most important developmental modifications of the nervous system is Schwann cell myelination of axons. Schwann cells ensheath axons to create myelin segments to provide protection to the axon as well as increase the conduction of action potentials. In vitro neuronal systems provide a unique modality to study a variety of factors influencing myelination as well as diseases associated with myelin sheath degradation. This work details the development of a patterned in vitro myelinating dorsal root ganglion culture. This defined system utilized a serum-free medium in combination with a patterned substrate, utilizing the cytophobic and cytophilic molecules (poly)ethylene glycol (PEG) and N-1[3 (trimethoxysilyl) propyl] diethylenetriamine (DETA), respectively. Directional outgrowth of the neurites and subsequent myelination was controlled by surface modifications, and conformity to the pattern was measured over the duration of the experiments. The myelinated segments and nodal proteins were visualized and quantified using confocal microscopy. This tissue-engineered system provides a highly controlled, reproducible model for studying Schwann cell interactions with sensory neurons, as well as the myelination process, and its effect on neuronal plasticity and peripheral nerve regeneration. It is also compatible for use in bio-hybrid constructs to reproduce the stretch reflex arc on a chip because the media combination used is the same we have used previously for motoneurons, muscle and for neuromuscular junction (NMJ) formation. This work could have application for the study of demyelinating diseases such as diabetes induced peripheral neuropathy and could rapidly translate to a role in the discovery of drugs promoting enhanced peripheral nervous system (PNS) remyelination. PMID:23949775

  7. Substance P suppresses GABAA receptor function via protein kinase C in primary sensory neurones of bullfrogs.

    PubMed Central

    Yamada, K; Akasu, T

    1996-01-01

    1. The effects of substance P (SP) and related tachykinins on the function of gamma-aminobutyric acid-A (GABAA) receptors were examined in acutely dissociated neurones of bullfrog dorsal root ganglia (DRG) by using whole-cell voltage-clamp techniques. 2. Application of SP (10 nM to 1 microM) depressed inward currents produced by GABAA receptor activation (IGABA). Neurokinin A (NKA) and neurokinin B (NKB) also depressed IGABA; the rank order of agonist potency was SP > NKA > NKB. Spantide ([D-Arg1, D-Trp7,9,Leu11]SP) and L-703,606, NK1 receptor antagonists, blocked the SP-induced depression of IGABA. 3. SP irreversibly depressed IGABA, when neurones were intracellularly dialysed with GTP gamma S. Intracellular application of GDP beta S prevented the SP-induced depression of IGABA. Pertussis toxin (PTX) did not block the inhibitory effect of SP on IGABA. 4. The depression of IGABA produced by SP was inhibited by H-7 and PKC(19-36), protein kinase C (PKC) inhibitors, but not by H-9 and HA-1004, protein kinase A inhibitors. IGABA was suppressed by application of sn-1,2-dioctanoyl glycerol (DOG), a PKC activator. 5. It is concluded that activation of neurokinin-1 (NK1) receptors downregulates the function of the GABAA receptor of primary sensory neurones through a PTX-insensitive G-protein. PKC may be involved in the transduction pathway of the tachykinin-induced inhibition of the GABAA receptor. PMID:8910228

  8. Axon Growth and Guidance Genes Identify Nascent, Immature, and Mature Olfactory Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    McIntyre, Jeremy C.; Titlow, William B.; McClintock, Timothy S.

    2016-01-01

    Neurogenesis of projection neurons requires that axons be initiated, extended, and connected. Differences in the expression of axon growth and guidance genes must drive these events, but comprehensively characterizing these differences in a single neuronal type has not been accomplished. Guided by a catalog of gene expression in olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs), in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry revealed that Cxcr4 and Dbn1, two axon initiation genes, marked the developmental transition from basal progenitor cells to immature OSNs in the olfactory epithelium. The CXCR4 immunoreactivity of these nascent OSNs overlapped partially with markers of proliferation of basal progenitor cells and partially with immunoreactivity for GAP43, the canonical marker of immature OSNs. Intracellular guidance cue signaling transcripts Ablim1, Crmp1, Dypsl2, Dpysl3, Dpysl5, Gap43, Marcskl1, and Stmn1–4 were specific to, or much more abundant in, the immature OSN layer. Receptors that mediate axonal inhibition or repulsion tended to be expressed in both immature and mature OSNs (Plxna1, Plxna4, Nrp2, Efna5) or specifically in mature OSNs (Plxna3, Unc5b, Efna3, Epha5, Epha7), although some were specific to immature OSNs (Plxnb1, Plxnb2, Plxdc2, Nrp1). Cell adhesion molecules were expressed either by both immature and mature OSNs (Dscam, Ncam1, Ncam2, Nrxn1) or solely by immature OSNs (Chl1, Nfasc1, Dscaml1). Given the loss of intracellular signaling protein expression, the continued expression of guidance cue receptors in mature OSNs is consistent with a change in the role of these receptors, perhaps to sending signals back to the cell body and nucleus. PMID:20882566

  9. Potassium currents in adult rat intracardiac neurones.

    PubMed Central

    Xi-Moy, S X; Dun, N J

    1995-01-01

    1. Properties of K+ currents were studied in isolated adult rat parasympathetic intracardiac neurones with the use of single-electrode voltage-clamp techniques. 2. A hyperpolarization-activated inward rectifier current was revealed when the membrane was clamped close to the resting level (-60 mV). The slowly developing inward relaxation had a mean amplitude of 450 pA at -150 mV, an activation threshold of -60 to -70 mV and a relaxation time constant of 41 ms at -120 mV. The current was reversibly blocked by Cs+ (1 mM) and became smaller with reduced [K+]o and [Na+]o, indicating that this inward rectifier current probably is a time- and voltage-dependent Na(+)-K+ current. 3. Step depolarizations from the holding potential of -80 mV evoked a transient (< 100 ms at -40 mV) outward K+ current (IA) which was blocked by 4-aminopyridine (4-AP, 1 mM). The time constants for IA inactivation were 20 ms at -50 mV and 16 ms at -20 mV. The steady-state activation and (removal of) inactivation curve showed a small overlap between -70 and -40 mV; the reversal potential of IA was close to EK. 4. Step hyperpolarizations from the depolarized potentials, i.e. -30 mV, revealed a slow inward relaxation associated with the deactivation of a time- and voltage-dependent current. The inward relaxation became faster at more hyperpolarized potentials and reversed at -85 and -53 mV in 4.7 and 15 mM [K+]o. This current was blocked by muscarine (20 microM) and Ba2+ (1 mM) but not affected by Cs+ (1 mM); this current may correspond to the M-current (IM). 5. Depolarization-activated outward K+ currents were evoked by holding the membrane close to the resting potential in the presence of tetrodotoxin (TTX, 3 microM), 4-AP (1 mM) and Ba2+ (1 mM). The amplitude of the outward relaxation and the tail current became smaller as the [K+]o was elevated. The outward tail current was reduced in a Ca(2+)-free solution and the residual current was eliminated by the addition of tetraethylammonium (TEA, 10 m

  10. Stem cells decreased neuronal cell death after hypoxic stress in primary fetal rat neurons in vitro.

    PubMed

    Sakai, Tetsuro; Xu, Yan

    2012-01-01

    To explore stem cell-mediated neuronal protection through extracellular signaling pathways by transplanted stem cells, we sought to identify potential candidate molecules responsible for neuronal protection using an in vitro coculture system. Primary fetal rat hippocampal neurons underwent hypoxia (≤1% oxygen) for 96 h nad then were returned to a normoxic condition. The study group then received rat umbilical cord matrix-derived stem cells, while the control group received fresh media only. The experimental group showed decreased neuronal apoptosis compared to the control group [44.5 ± 1.6% vs. 71.0 ± 4.2% (mean ± SD, p = 0.0005) on day 5] and higher neuronal survival (4.9 ± 1.2 cells/100× field vs. 2.2 ± 0.3, p = 0.02 on day 5). Among 90 proteins evaluated using a protein array, stem cell coculture media showed increased protein secretion of TIMP-1 (5.61-fold), TIMP-2 (4.88), CNTF-Rα (3.42), activin A (2.20), fractalkine (2.04), CCR4 (2.02), and decreased secretion in MIP-2 (0.30-fold), AMPK α1 (0.43), TROY (0.48), and TIMP-3 (0.50). This study demonstrated that coculturing stem cells with primary neurons in vitro decreased neuronal cell death after hypoxia with significantly altered protein secretion. The results suggest that stem cells may offer neuronal protection through extracellular signaling.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. Limited Efficacy of α-Conopeptides, Vc1.1 and RgIA, To Inhibit Sensory Neuron CaV Current1,2,3

    PubMed Central

    Wright, Andrew B.; Norimatsu, Yohei; McIntosh, J. Michael; Elmslie, Keith S.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Chronic pain is very difficult to treat. Thus, novel analgesics are a critical area of research. Strong preclinical evidence supports the analgesic effects of α-conopeptides, Vc1.1 and RgIA, which block α9α10 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs). However, the analgesic mechanism is controversial. Some evidence supports the block of α9α10 nAChRs as an analgesic mechanism, while other evidence supports the inhibition of N-type CaV (CaV2.2) current via activation of GABAB receptors. Here, we reassess the effect of Vc1.1 and RgIA on CaV current in rat sensory neurons. Unlike the previous findings, we found highly variable effects among individual sensory neurons, but on average only minimal inhibition induced by Vc1.1, and no significant effect on the current by RgIA. We also investigated the potential involvement of GABAB receptors in the Vc1.1-induced inhibition, and found no correlation between the size of CaV current inhibition induced by baclofen (GABAB agonist) versus that induced by Vc1.1. Thus, GABAB receptors are unlikely to mediate the Vc1.1-induced CaV current inhibition. Based on the present findings, CaV current inhibition in dorsal root ganglia is unlikely to be the predominant mechanism by which either Vc1.1 or RgIA induce analgesia. PMID:26078999

  14. In vitro thermosensitivity of rat lateral parabrachial neurons.

    PubMed

    Xue, Yawen; Yang, Yonglu; Tang, Yu; Ye, Mengping; Xu, Jianhui; Zeng, Yixin; Zhang, Jie

    2016-04-21

    The lateral parabrachial (LPB) neurons play a pivotal role in the thermoregulatory afferent pathway by transmitting cutaneous thermosensory signals received from spinal neurons directly to the thermoregulatory command center, the preoptic area (POA). The present study was conducted to electrophysiologically characterize the local temperature responsiveness of rat LPB neurons in brain slices to evaluate their local thermosensitivity and permit comparison with thermosensitive neurons in POA and spinal cord slices under consistent experimental conditions. In current clamp, warm- and cold-sensitive neurons were recorded in LPBel, LPBc and LPBd, the three LPB subnuclei responsible for the transmission of cutaneous feedforward signals. Of the 92 spontaneously firing LPB neurons, 27% were warm sensitive, 10% were cold sensitive, and 63% were temperature insensitive, and the spontaneous firing rate of the warm-sensitive neurons was significantly greater than that of the temperature-insensitive neurons. These proportions and spontaneous activity are similar to results obtained in the POA and spinal cord. Furthermore, the thermosensitivity was also present in 38% of silent neurons evoked by injection of a small amount of depolarizing current. Warm-sensitive neurons in the LPB were similar in thermoresponsiveness to those in the POA and spinal cord. However, cold sensitivity in the LPB was distinct from that in the POA. The firing rate of most cold-sensitive neurons changed steeply at a relatively narrow band of temperature, and some of them were silent near thermoneutrality. The percentages of thermosensitive and insensitive neurons within the three LPB subnuclei were not significantly different, nor were the mean maximal thermal coefficients of the thermosensitive neurons. These results suggest that LPB have local thermosensory functions as POA and spinal cord, and might be an important extrahypothalamic "thermoregulator".

  15. Damage of hippocampal neurons in rats with chronic alcoholism

    PubMed Central

    Du, Ailin; Jiang, Hongbo; Xu, Lei; An, Na; Liu, Hui; Li, Yinsheng; Zhang, Ruiling

    2014-01-01

    Chronic alcoholism can damage the cytoskeleton and aggravate neurological deficits. However, the effect of chronic alcoholism on hippocampal neurons remains unclear. In this study, a model of chronic alcoholism was established in rats that were fed with 6% alcohol for 42 days. Endogenous hydrogen sulfide content and cystathionine-beta-synthase activity in the hippocampus of rats with chronic alcoholism were significantly increased, while F-actin expression was decreased. Hippocampal neurons in rats with chronic alcoholism appeared to have a fuzzy nuclear membrane, mitochondrial edema, and ruptured mitochondrial crista. These findings suggest that chronic alcoholism can cause learning and memory decline in rats, which may be associated with the hydrogen sulfide/cystathionine-beta-synthase system, mitochondrial damage and reduced expression of F-actin. PMID:25368648

  16. Pharmacological reversal of a pain phenotype in iPSC-derived sensory neurons and patients with inherited erythromelalgia.

    PubMed

    Cao, Lishuang; McDonnell, Aoibhinn; Nitzsche, Anja; Alexandrou, Aristos; Saintot, Pierre-Philippe; Loucif, Alexandre J C; Brown, Adam R; Young, Gareth; Mis, Malgorzata; Randall, Andrew; Waxman, Stephen G; Stanley, Philip; Kirby, Simon; Tarabar, Sanela; Gutteridge, Alex; Butt, Richard; McKernan, Ruth M; Whiting, Paul; Ali, Zahid; Bilsland, James; Stevens, Edward B

    2016-04-20

    In common with other chronic pain conditions, there is an unmet clinical need in the treatment of inherited erythromelalgia (IEM). TheSCN9Agene encoding the sodium channel Nav1.7 expressed in the peripheral nervous system plays a critical role in IEM. A gain-of-function mutation in this sodium channel leads to aberrant sensory neuronal activity and extreme pain, particularly in response to heat. Five patients with IEM were treated with a new potent and selective compound that blocked the Nav1.7 sodium channel resulting in a decrease in heat-induced pain in most of the patients. We derived induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) lines from four of five subjects and produced sensory neurons that emulated the clinical phenotype of hyperexcitability and aberrant responses to heat stimuli. When we compared the severity of the clinical phenotype with the hyperexcitability of the iPSC-derived sensory neurons, we saw a trend toward a correlation for individual mutations. The in vitro IEM phenotype was sensitive to Nav1.7 blockers, including the clinical test agent. Given the importance of peripherally expressed sodium channels in many pain conditions, our approach may have broader utility for a wide range of pain and sensory conditions.

  17. Activation of silent mechanoreceptive cat C and Adelta sensory neurons and their substance P expression following peripheral inflammation.

    PubMed

    Xu, G Y; Huang, L Y; Zhao, Z Q

    2000-10-15

    The effect of inflammation on the excitability and the level of substance P (SP) in cat mechanoreceptive C and Adelta dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons were studied in vivo using intracellular recording and immunocytochemical techniques. Following injections of carrageenan (Carg) into the cat hindpaw, the percentage of C neurons exhibiting spontaneous activity increased from 7.2 to 20.7% and the percentage of Adelta neurons increased from 6.9 to 18.6%. In contrast to most cells from normal cats, which fired regularly below 10 Hz, many cells from Carg-treated cats fired at higher frequencies or in bursts. Inflammation (Carg treatment) also depolarized membrane potentials, increased membrane input resistance, caused the disappearance of inward rectifying currents and lowered the mean current thresholds of tibial nerve-evoked responses in DRG neurons. With inflammation, the percentage of C or Adelta neurons responding to low threshold mechanoreceptive stimuli increased (C neurons: normal, 13%; inflamed, 41%; Adelta neurons: normal, 13 %; inflamed, 39 %), while the percentage of C or Adelta neurons responding to high threshold mechanoreceptive stimuli remained unchanged. Some receptive field (RF)-responsive cells were injected with Lucifer Yellow and their SP immunoreactivity was determined. Following Carg treatment, substantially higher percentages of RF-responsive cells were SP positive (C neurons: normal, 35.7%; inflamed, 60%; Adelta neurons: normal, 18.2%; inflamed, 66.7%). These combined increases in the excitability of DRG neurons and SP-containing RF-responsive neurons could lead to sensitization of sensory neurons, thus contributing to the development of hyperalgesia.

  18. Pharmacology of currents underlying the different firing patterns of spinal sensory neurons and interneurons identified in vivo using multivariate analysis

    PubMed Central

    Roberts, Alan

    2011-01-01

    The operation of neuronal networks depends on the firing patterns of the network's neurons. When sustained current is injected, some neurons in the central nervous system fire a single action potential and others fire repetitively. For example, in Xenopus laevis tadpoles, primary-sensory Rohon-Beard (RB) neurons fired a single action potential in response to 300-ms rheobase current injections, whereas dorsolateral (DL) interneurons fired repetitively at 10–20 Hz. To investigate the basis for these differences in vivo, we examined drug-induced changes in the firing patterns of Xenopus spinal neurons using whole cell current-clamp recordings. Neuron types were initially separated through cluster analysis, and we compared results produced using different clustering algorithms. We used these results to develop a predictive function to classify subsequently recorded neurons. The potassium channel blocker tetraethylammonium (TEA) converted single-firing RB neurons to low-frequency repetitive firing but reduced the firing frequency of repetitive-firing DL interneurons. Firing frequency in DL interneurons was also reduced by the potassium channel blockers 4-aminopyridine (4-AP), catechol, and margatoxin; 4-AP had the greatest effect. The calcium channel blockers amiloride and nimodipine had few effects on firing in either neuron type but reduced action potential duration in DL interneurons. Muscarine, which blocks M-currents, did not affect RB neurons but reduced firing frequency in DL interneurons. These results suggest that potassium currents may control neuron firing patterns: a TEA-sensitive current prevents repetitive firing in RB neurons, whereas a 4-AP-sensitive current underlies repetitive firing in DL interneurons. The cluster and discriminant analysis described could help to classify neurons in other systems. PMID:21346204

  19. Dynamics of the sensory response to urethral flow over multiple time scales in rat

    PubMed Central

    Danziger, Zachary C; Grill, Warren M

    2015-01-01

    The pudendal nerve carries sensory information from the urethra that controls spinal reflexes necessary to maintain continence and achieve efficient micturition. Despite the key role urethral sensory feedback plays in regulation of the lower urinary tract, there is little information about the characteristics of urethral sensory responses to physiological stimuli, and the quantitative relationship between physiological stimuli and the evoked sensory activation is unknown. Such a relation is critical to understanding the neural control of the lower urinary tract and how dysfunction arises in disease states. We systematically quantified pudendal afferent responses to fluid flow in the urethra in vivo in the rat. We characterized the sensory response across a range of stimuli, and describe a previously unreported long-term neural accommodation phenomenon. We developed and validated a compact mechanistic mathematical model capable of reproducing the pudendal sensory activity in response to arbitrary profiles of urethral flows. These results describe the properties and function of urethral afferents that are necessary to understand how sensory disruption manifests in lower urinary tract pathophysiology. Key points Sensory information from the urethra is essential to maintain continence and to achieve efficient micturition and when compromised by disease or injury can lead to substantial loss of function. Despite the key role urethral sensory information plays in the lower urinary tract, the relationship between physiological urethral stimuli, such as fluid flow, and the neural sensory response is poorly understood. This work systematically quantifies pudendal afferent responses to a range of fluid flows in the urethra in vivo and describes a previously unknown long-term neural accommodation phenomenon in these afferents. We present a compact mechanistic mathematical model that reproduces the pudendal sensory activity in response to urethral flow. These results have

  20. Morphology and ontogeny of rat perirhinal cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Furtak, Sharon Christine; Moyer, James Russell; Brown, Thomas Huntington

    2007-12-10

    Golgi-impregnated neurons from rat perirhinal cortex (PR) were classified into one of 15 distinct morphological categories (N = 6,891). The frequency of neurons in each cell class was determined as a function of the layer of PR and the age of the animal, which ranged from postnatal day 0 (P0) to young adulthood (P45). The developmental appearance of Golgi-impregnated neurons conformed to the expected "inside-out" pattern of development, meaning that cells populated in deep before superficial layers of PR. The relative frequencies of different cell types changed during the first 2 weeks of postnatal development. The largest cells, which were pyramidal and spiny multipolar neurons, appeared earliest. Aspiny stellate neurons were the last to appear. The total number of Golgi-impregnated neurons peaked at P10-12, corresponding to the time of eye-opening. This early increase in the number of impregnated neurons parallels observations in other cortical areas. The relative frequency of the 15 cell types remained constant between P14 to P45. The proportion of pyramidal neurons in PR ( approximately 50%) was much smaller than is typical of neocortex ( approximately 70%). A correspondingly larger proportion of PR neurons were nonpyramidal cells that are less common in neocortex. The relative frequency distribution of cell types creates an overall impression of considerable morphological diversity, which is arguably related to the particular manner in which this periallocortical brain region processes and stores information.

  1. Feedforward motor information enhances somatosensory responses and sharpens angular tuning of rat S1 barrel cortex neurons

    PubMed Central

    Khateb, Mohamed; Schiller, Jackie; Schiller, Yitzhak

    2017-01-01

    The primary vibrissae motor cortex (vM1) is responsible for generating whisking movements. In parallel, vM1 also sends information directly to the sensory barrel cortex (vS1). In this study, we investigated the effects of vM1 activation on processing of vibrissae sensory information in vS1 of the rat. To dissociate the vibrissae sensory-motor loop, we optogenetically activated vM1 and independently passively stimulated principal vibrissae. Optogenetic activation of vM1 supra-linearly amplified the response of vS1 neurons to passive vibrissa stimulation in all cortical layers measured. Maximal amplification occurred when onset of vM1 optogenetic activation preceded vibrissa stimulation by 20 ms. In addition to amplification, vM1 activation also sharpened angular tuning of vS1 neurons in all cortical layers measured. Our findings indicated that in addition to output motor signals, vM1 also sends preparatory signals to vS1 that serve to amplify and sharpen the response of neurons in the barrel cortex to incoming sensory input signals. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.21843.001 PMID:28059699

  2. Participation of a persistent sodium current and calcium-activated nonspecific cationic current to burst generation in trigeminal principal sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Tsuruyama, Kentaro; Hsiao, Chie-Fang

    2013-01-01

    The properties of neurons participating in masticatory rhythmogenesis are not clearly understood. Neurons within the dorsal trigeminal principal sensory nucleus (dPrV) are potential candidates as components of the masticatory central pattern generator (CPG). The present study examines in detail the ionic mechanisms controlling burst generation in dPrV neurons in rat (postnatal day 8–12) brain stem slices using whole cell and perforated patch-clamp methods. Nominal extracellular Ca2+ concentration transformed tonic discharge in response to a maintained step pulse of current into rhythmical bursting in 38% of nonbursting neurons. This change in discharge mode was suppressed by riluzole, a persistent Na+ current (INaP) antagonist. Veratridine, which suppresses the Na+ channel inactivation mechanism, induced rhythmical bursting in nonbursting neurons in normal artificial cerebrospinal fluid, suggesting that INaP contributes to burst generation. Nominal extracellular Ca2+ exposed a prominent afterdepolarizing potential (ADP) following a single spike induced by a 3-ms current pulse, which was suppressed, but not completely blocked, by riluzole. Application of BAPTA, a Ca2+ chelator, intracellularly, or flufenamic acid, a Ca2+-activated nonspecific cationic channel (ICAN) antagonist, extracellularly to the bath, suppressed rhythmical bursting and the postspike ADP. Application of drugs to alter Ca2+ release from endoplasmic reticulum also suppressed bursting. Finally, voltage-clamp methods demonstrated that nominal Ca2+ facilitated INaP and induced ICAN. These data demonstrate for the first time that the previously observed induction in dPrV neurons of rhythmical bursting in nominal Ca2+ is mediated by enhancement of INaP and onset of ICAN, which are dependent on intracellular Ca2+. PMID:23883859

  3. Transient receptor potential TRPA1 channel desensitization in sensory neurons is agonist dependent and regulated by TRPV1-directed internalization.

    PubMed

    Akopian, Armen N; Ruparel, Nikita B; Jeske, Nathaniel A; Hargreaves, Kenneth M

    2007-08-15

    The pharmacological desensitization of receptors is a fundamental mechanism for regulating the activity of neuronal systems. The TRPA1 channel plays a key role in the processing of noxious information and can undergo functional desensitization by unknown mechanisms. Here we show that TRPA1 is desensitized by homologous (mustard oil; a TRPA1 agonist) and heterologous (capsaicin; a TRPV1 agonist) agonists via Ca2+-independent and Ca2+-dependent pathways, respectively, in sensory neurons. The pharmacological desensitization of TRPA1 by capsaicin and mustard oil is not influenced by activation of protein phosphatase 2B. However, it is regulated by phosphatidylinositol-4,5-bisphosphate depletion after capsaicin, but not mustard oil, application. Using a biosensor, we establish that capsaicin, unlike mustard oil, consistently activates phospholipase C in sensory neurons. We next demonstrate that TRPA1 desensitization is regulated by TRPV1, and it appears that mustard oil-induced TRPA1 internalization is prevented by coexpression with TRPV1 in a heterologous expression system and in sensory neurons. In conclusion, we propose novel mechanisms whereby TRPA1 activity undergoes pharmacological desensitization through multiple cellular pathways that are agonist dependent and modulated by TRPV1.

  4. Cysteine proteinase-1 and cut protein isoform control dendritic innervation of two distinct sensory fields by a single neuron.

    PubMed

    Lyons, Gray R; Andersen, Ryan O; Abdi, Khadar; Song, Won-Seok; Kuo, Chay T

    2014-03-13

    Dendrites often exhibit structural changes in response to local inputs. Although mechanisms that pattern and maintain dendritic arbors are becoming clearer, processes regulating regrowth, during context-dependent plasticity or after injury, remain poorly understood. We found that a class of Drosophila sensory neurons, through complete pruning and regeneration, can elaborate two distinct dendritic trees, innervating independent sensory fields. An expression screen identified Cysteine proteinase-1 (Cp1) as a critical regulator of this process. Unlike known ecdysone effectors, Cp1-mutant ddaC neurons pruned larval dendrites normally but failed to regrow adult dendrites. Cp1 expression was upregulated/concentrated in the nucleus during metamorphosis, controlling production of a truncated Cut homeodomain transcription factor. This truncated Cut, but not the full-length protein, allowed Cp1-mutant ddaC neurons to regenerate higher-order adult dendrites. These results identify a molecular pathway needed for dendrite regrowth after pruning, which allows the same neuron to innervate distinct sensory fields.

  5. The tubulin repertoire of Caenorhabditis elegans sensory neurons and its context‑dependent role in process outgrowth

    PubMed Central

    Lockhead, Dean; Schwarz, Erich M.; O’Hagan, Robert; Bellotti, Sebastian; Krieg, Michael; Barr, Maureen M.; Dunn, Alexander R.; Sternberg, Paul W.; Goodman, Miriam B.

    2016-01-01

    Microtubules contribute to many cellular processes, including transport, signaling, and chromosome separation during cell division. They comprise αβ‑tubulin heterodimers arranged into linear protofilaments and assembled into tubes. Eukaryotes express multiple tubulin isoforms, and there has been a longstanding debate as to whether the isoforms are redundant or perform specialized roles as part of a tubulin code. Here we use the well‑characterized touch receptor neurons (TRNs) of Caenorhabditis elegans to investigate this question through genetic dissection of process outgrowth both in vivo and in vitro. With single‑cell RNA-seq, we compare transcription profiles for TRNs with those of two other sensory neurons and present evidence that each sensory neuron expresses a distinct palette of tubulin genes. In the TRNs, we analyze process outgrowth and show that four tubulins (tba‑1, tba‑2, tbb‑1, and tbb‑2) function partially or fully redundantly, whereas two others (mec‑7 and mec‑12) perform specialized, context‑dependent roles. Our findings support a model in which sensory neurons express overlapping subsets of tubulin genes whose functional redundancy varies among cell types and in vivo and in vitro contexts. PMID:27654945

  6. Facilitation of TRPV4 by TRPV1 is required for itch transmission in some sensory neuron populations

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Seungil; Barry, Devin M.; Liu, Xian-Yu; Yin, Shijin; Munanairi, Admire; Meng, Qing-Tao; Cheng, Wei; Mo, Ping; Wan, Li; Liu, Shen-Bin; Ratnayake, Kasun; Zhao, Zhong-Qiu; Gautam, Narasimhan; Zheng, Jie; Ajith Karunarathne, W. K.; Chen, Zhou-Feng

    2017-01-01

    The transient receptor potential channels (TRPs) respond to chemical irritants and temperature. TRPV1 responds to the itch-inducing endogenous signal histamine, and TRPA1 responds to the itch-inducing chemical chloroquine. We showed that, in sensory neurons, TRPV4 is important for both chloroquine-and histamine-induced itch and that TRPV1 has a role in chloroquine-induced itch. Chloroquine-induced scratching was reduced in mice in which TRPV1 was knocked down or pharmacologically inhibited. Both TRPV4 and TRPV1 were present in some sensory neurons. Pharmacological blockade of either TRPV4 or TRPV1 significantly attenuated the Ca2+ response of sensory neurons exposed to histamine or chloroquine. Knockout of Trpv1 impaired Ca2+ responses and reduced scratching behavior evoked by a TRPV4 agonist, whereas knockout of Trpv4 did not alter TRPV1-mediated capsaicin responses. Electrophysiological analysis of human embryonic kidney (HEK) 293 cells coexpressing TRPV4 and TRPV1 revealed that the presence of both channels enhanced the activation kinetics of TRPV4 but not of TRPV1. Biochemical and biophysical studies suggested a close proximity between TRPV4 and TRPV1 in dorsal root ganglion neurons and in cultured cells. Thus, our studies identified TRPV4 as a channel that contributes to both histamine- and chloroquine-induced itch and indicated that the function of TRPV4 in itch signaling involves TRPV1-mediated facilitation. TRP facilitation through the formation of heteromeric complexes could be a prevalent mechanism by which the vast array of somatosensory information is encoded in sensory neurons. PMID:27436359

  7. Facilitation of TRPV4 by TRPV1 is required for itch transmission in some sensory neuron populations.

    PubMed

    Kim, Seungil; Barry, Devin M; Liu, Xian-Yu; Yin, Shijin; Munanairi, Admire; Meng, Qing-Tao; Cheng, Wei; Mo, Ping; Wan, Li; Liu, Shen-Bin; Ratnayake, Kasun; Zhao, Zhong-Qiu; Gautam, Narasimhan; Zheng, Jie; Karunarathne, W K Ajith; Chen, Zhou-Feng

    2016-07-19

    The transient receptor potential channels (TRPs) respond to chemical irritants and temperature. TRPV1 responds to the itch-inducing endogenous signal histamine, and TRPA1 responds to the itch-inducing chemical chloroquine. We showed that, in sensory neurons, TRPV4 is important for both chloroquine- and histamine-induced itch and that TRPV1 has a role in chloroquine-induced itch. Chloroquine-induced scratching was reduced in mice in which TRPV1 was knocked down or pharmacologically inhibited. Both TRPV4 and TRPV1 were present in some sensory neurons. Pharmacological blockade of either TRPV4 or TRPV1 significantly attenuated the Ca(2+) response of sensory neurons exposed to histamine or chloroquine. Knockout of Trpv1 impaired Ca(2+) responses and reduced scratching behavior evoked by a TRPV4 agonist, whereas knockout of Trpv4 did not alter TRPV1-mediated capsaicin responses. Electrophysiological analysis of human embryonic kidney (HEK) 293 cells coexpressing TRPV4 and TRPV1 revealed that the presence of both channels enhanced the activation kinetics of TRPV4 but not of TRPV1. Biochemical and biophysical studies suggested a close proximity between TRPV4 and TRPV1 in dorsal root ganglion neurons and in cultured cells. Thus, our studies identified TRPV4 as a channel that contributes to both histamine- and chloroquine-induced itch and indicated that the function of TRPV4 in itch signaling involves TRPV1-mediated facilitation. TRP facilitation through the formation of heteromeric complexes could be a prevalent mechanism by which the vast array of somatosensory information is encoded in sensory neurons.

  8. Acute ethanol effects on sensory responses of single units in the somatosensory cortex of rats during different behavioral states.

    PubMed

    Chapin, J K; Sorensen, S M; Woodward, D J

    1986-09-01

    We have investigated the dose-dependence and time-course of ethanol effects on the activity of single neurons in the somatosensory (SI) cortex of behaving, unanesthetized rats. Sensory responses of neurons recorded in the forepaw area of the SI cortex were quantitatively measured by constructing post-stimulus histograms to repetitive stimulation through electrodes chronically implanted in the forepaw. Single units were isolated and held throughout a protocol involving: (1) a control period, (2) intoxication produced by a single dose of ethanol administered IP or IV and (3) recovery for 60 minutes or more. Post-stimulus histograms were generated during three standard behaviors: (1) REST, (2) IMMOBILE AROUSAL (produced by holding the animal), and (3) MOVEMENT (running on a treadmill). In pre-ethanol controls, the immobile arousal condition slightly increased both excitatory and inhibitory components of the sensory response, while the movement condition strongly inhibited them. Ethanol reduced both of these types of behavioral modulation of sensory responses by abolishing the facilitation normally seen during immobile arousal, as well as the inhibitory gating normally seen during movement. Different latency response epochs of post-stimulus histograms were also used to compare the effect of ethanol on fast vs. slow conducting pathways to the SI cortex. Ethanol at low doses (0.3 g/kg bw, IP) was found to selectively reduce the longer latency excitatory response peaks, while sparing the shortest latency response peak. At moderate doses (1.0 g/kg), however, the shortest latency response peak was also reduced. This contrasted with the effects of halothane which, at anesthetic doses, exerted a much more selective reduction of the longer latency responses.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  9. Noise in any frequency range can enhance information transmission in a sensory neuron

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levin, Jacob E.

    1997-05-01

    The effect of noise on the neural encoding of broadband signals was investigated in the cricket cercal system, a mechanosensory system sensitive to small near-field air particle disturbances. Known air current stimuli were presented to the cricket through audio speakers in a controlled environment in a variety of background noise conditions. Spike trains from the second layer of neuronal processing, the primary sensory interneurons, were recorded with intracellular Electrodes and the performance of these neurons characterized with the tools of information theory. SNR, mutual information rates, and other measures of encoding accuracy were calculated for single frequency, narrowband, and broadband signals over the entire amplitude sensitivity range of the cells, in the presence of uncorrelated noise background also spanning the cells' frequency and amplitude sensitivity range. Significant enhancements of transmitted information through the addition of external noise were observed regardless of the frequency range of either the signal or noise waveforms, provided both were within the operating range of the cell. Considerable improvements in signal encoding were observed for almost an entire order of magnitude of near-threshold signal amplitudes. This included sinusoidal signals embedded in broadband white noise, broadband signals in broadband noise, and even broadband signals presented with narrowband noise in a completely non-overlapping frequency range. The noise related increases in mutual information rate for broadband signals were as high as 150%, and up to 600% increases in SNR were observed for sinusoidal signals. Additionally, it was shown that the amount of information about the signal carried, on average, by each spike was INCREASED for small signals when presented with noise—implying that added input noise can, in certain situations, actually improve the accuracy of the encoding process itself.

  10. Pain-enhancing mechanism through interaction between TRPV1 and anoctamin 1 in sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Takayama, Yasunori; Uta, Daisuke; Furue, Hidemasa; Tominaga, Makoto

    2015-04-21

    The capsaicin receptor transient receptor potential cation channel vanilloid 1 (TRPV1) is activated by various noxious stimuli, and the stimuli are converted into electrical signals in primary sensory neurons. It is believed that cation influx through TRPV1 causes depolarization, leading to the activation of voltage-gated sodium channels, followed by the generation of action potential. Here we report that the capsaicin-evoked action potential could be induced by two components: a cation influx-mediated depolarization caused by TRPV1 activation and a subsequent anion efflux-mediated depolarization via activation of anoctamin 1 (ANO1), a calcium-activated chloride channel, resulting from the entry of calcium through TRPV1. The interaction between TRPV1 and ANO1 is based on their physical binding. Capsaicin activated the chloride currents in an extracellular calcium-dependent manner in HEK293T cells expressing TRPV1 and ANO1. Similarly, in mouse dorsal root ganglion neurons, capsaicin-activated inward currents were inhibited significantly by a specific ANO1 antagonist, T16Ainh-A01 (A01), in the presence of a high concentration of EGTA but not in the presence of BAPTA [1,2-bis(o-aminophenoxy)ethane-N,N,N',N'-tetraacetic acid]. The generation of a capsaicin-evoked action potential also was inhibited by A01. Furthermore, pain-related behaviors in mice treated with capsaicin, but not with αβ-methylene ATP, were reduced significantly by the concomitant administration of A01. These results indicate that TRPV1-ANO1 interaction is a significant pain-enhancing mechanism in the peripheral nervous system.

  11. Role of sensory nerves in gastroprotective effect of anandamide in rats.

    PubMed

    Warzecha, Z; Dembinski, A; Ceranowicz, P; Dembinski, M; Cieszkowski, J; Kownacki, P; Konturek, P C

    2011-04-01

    Previous studies have shown that stimulation of cannabinoid 1 (CB1) receptor protects the gastric mucosa against stress-induced lesion. Aim of the present study was to examine the influence of anandamide on lipid peroxidation and antioxidant defense system in gastric mucosa and the role of sensory nerves in gastroprotective effects of cannabinoids. Studies were performed on rats with intact or ablated sensory nerves (by neurotoxic doses of capsaicin). Gastric lesions were induced by water immersion and restrain stress (WRS). Anandamide was administered at the dose of 0.3, 1.5 or 3.0 μmol/kg, 30 min before exposure to WRS. CB1 receptor antagonist, AM251 (4.0 μmol/kg) was administered 40 min before WRS. WRS induced gastric lesions associated with the decrease in gastric blood flow, mucosal DNA synthesis and mucosal activity of superoxide dismutase (SOD). Serum level of interleukin-1β (IL-1β) and mucosal level of malondialdehyde (MDA) and 4-hydroxynonenal (4-HNE) were increased. Administration of anandamide reduced the ulcers area, generation of MDA+4-HNE and serum level of IL-1β, and this effect was associated with the reduction in the WRS-induced decrease in gastric mucosal blood flow, mucosal DNA synthesis and SOD activity. Ablation of sensory nerves increased the area of ulcers, serum level of IL-1β and mucosal content of MDA+4-HNE, whereas mucosal DNA synthesis, SOD activity and blood flow were additionally decreased. In rats with ablation of sensory nerves, administration of anandamide at the high doses (1.5 and 3.0 μmol/kg) partly reduced deleterious effect of WRS on gastric mucosa, but this effect was weaker than in animals with intact sensory nerves. Low dose of anandamide (0.3 μmol/kg) was ineffective in the protection of gastric mucosa against the WRS-induced lesions in rats with ablation of sensory nerves. In rats with intact sensory nerves and exposed to WRS, administration of AM251 exhibited deleterious effect. In rats with ablation of sensory

  12. 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.

  13. c-jun expression in substantia nigra neurons following striatal 6-hydroxydopamine lesions in the rat.

    PubMed

    Jenkins, R; O'Shea, R; Thomas, K L; Hunt, S P

    1993-03-01

    The proto-oncogene c-jun is thought to play a role in the control of growth and differentiation of many cell types. It has been demonstrated previously that damage to axons of peripheral motor or sensory neurons resulted within 24 h in substantially increased levels of the c-jun gene in the parent cell bodies. These increased levels of c-jun protein and messenger RNA are maintained if the damaged nerve is ligated, but return to basal levels if the peripheral nerve is allowed to regenerate. We have examined the expression of immediate early genes in central neurons of the rat and now show that a 6-hydroxydopamine-induced axotomy of the dopaminergic nigrostriatal pathway results in a substantial increase in the levels of c-jun (but not c-fos) messenger RNA and protein within neurons of the substantia nigra pars compacta. However, the central neuronal response differs from the peripheral nerve response in that it becomes maximal at four to eight days post-lesion and is transient, declining to control levels in nigral neurons by 14 days post-lesion. These expression patterns may be related to the differential capacity of central and peripheral neurons to regenerate. The precise role of c-jun in these processes, or in the regenerative response, is unclear but it remains possible that c-jun activation following axon damage leads to an increased expression of genes which are essential for the regenerative response. The nature of the mechanism by which c-jun levels are attenuated in central neurons is also unclear, but inhibitory factors, generated by the central environment, may play a role.

  14. Reduced potassium currents in old rat CA1 hippocampal neurons.

    PubMed

    Alshuaib, W B; Hasan, S M; Cherian, S P; Mathew, M V; Hasan, M Y; Fahim, M A

    2001-01-15

    Potassium currents are an important factor in repolarizing the membrane potential and determining the level of neuronal excitability. We compared potassium currents in CA1 hippocampal neurons dissociated from young (2-3 months old) and old (26-30 months old) Sprague-Dawley rats. Whole-cell patch-clamp techniques were used to measure the delayed rectifier (sustained) and the A-type (transient) potassium currents. The delayed rectifier current was smaller in old (548 +/- 57 pA) than in young (1193 +/- 171 pA) neurons. In the absence of extracellular calcium, the delayed rectifier current was also smaller in old (427 +/- 41 pA) than in young (946 +/- 144 pA) neurons. The cell membrane capacitance was unchanged in old (13.3 +/- 1.2 pF) compared to young (13.6 +/- 1.2 pF). Therefore, the reduction in the delayed rectifier current was not due to a change in membrane surface area. Moreover, activation and inactivation of the delayed rectifier current were unchanged in old compared to young neurons. The slope of the current-voltage relation, however, was smaller in old (B = 5.03) than in young (B = 9.62) neurons. Similarly, the A-current was smaller in old (100 +/- 16 pA) than in young (210 +/- 44 pA) neurons in the presence of extracellular calcium. This reduction of potassium currents could account for the prolongation of action potentials reported previously for old rat CA1 hippocampal neurons. The age-related reduction in potassium current indicates plasticity in neuronal function that can impact communication in the hippocampal neural network during aging.

  15. Differential expression of axon-sorting molecules in mouse olfactory sensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Ihara, Naoki; Nakashima, Ai; Hoshina, Naosuke; Ikegaya, Yuji; Takeuchi, Haruki

    2016-08-01

    In the mouse olfactory system, the axons of olfactory sensory neurons that express the same type of odorant receptor (OR) converge to a specific set of glomeruli in the olfactory bulb (OB). It is widely accepted that expressed OR molecules instruct glomerular segregation by regulating the expression of axon-sorting molecules. Although the relationship between the expression of axon-sorting molecules and OR types has been analyzed in detail, those between the expressions of axon-sorting molecules remain to be elucidated. Here we collected the expression profiles of four axon-sorting molecules from a large number of glomeruli in the OB. These molecules demonstrated position-independent mosaic expressions, but their patterns were not identical in the OB. Comparing their expressions identified positive and negative correlations between several pairs of genes even though they showed various expressions. Furthermore, the principal component analysis revealed that the factor loadings in the principal component 1, which explain the largest amount of variation, were most likely to reflect the degree of the cyclic nucleotide-gated (CNG) channel dependence on the expression of axon-sorting molecules. Thus, neural activity generated through the CNG channel is a major component in the generation of a wide variety of expressions of axon-sorting molecules in glomerular segregation.

  16. Slow Cholinergic Modulation of Spike Probability in Ultra-Fast Time-Coding Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Goyer, David; Kurth, Stefanie; Rübsamen, Rudolf

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Sensory processing in the lower auditory pathway is generally considered to be rigid and thus less subject to modulation than central processing. However, in addition to the powerful bottom-up excitation by auditory nerve fibers, the ventral cochlear nucleus also receives efferent cholinergic innervation from both auditory and nonauditory top–down sources. We thus tested the influence of cholinergic modulation on highly precise time-coding neurons in the cochlear nucleus of the Mongolian gerbil. By combining electrophysiological recordings with pharmacological application in vitro and in vivo, we found 55–72% of spherical bushy cells (SBCs) to be depolarized by carbachol on two time scales, ranging from hundreds of milliseconds to minutes. These effects were mediated by nicotinic and muscarinic acetylcholine receptors, respectively. Pharmacological block of muscarinic receptors hyperpolarized the resting membrane potential, suggesting a novel mechanism of setting the resting membrane potential for SBC. The cholinergic depolarization led to an increase of spike probability in SBCs without compromising the temporal precision of the SBC output in vitro. In vivo, iontophoretic application of carbachol resulted in an increase in spontaneous SBC activity. The inclusion of cholinergic modulation in an SBC model predicted an expansion of the dynamic range of sound responses and increased temporal acuity. Our results thus suggest of a top–down modulatory system mediated by acetylcholine which influences temporally precise information processing in the lower auditory pathway. PMID:27699207

  17. C. elegans ciliated sensory neurons release extracellular vesicles that function in animal communication

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Juan; Silva, Malan; Haas, Leonard; Morsci, Natalia; Nguyen, Ken C.Q.; Hall, David H.; Barr, Maureen M.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Cells release extracellular vesicles (ECVs) that play important roles in intercellular communication and may mediate a broad range of physiological and pathological processes. Many fundamental aspects of ECV biogenesis and signaling have yet to be determined, with ECV detection being a challenge and obstacle due to their small size (100nm). We developed an in vivo system to visualize the dynamic release of GFP-labeled ECVs. We show here that specific Caenorhabdidits elegans ciliated sensory neurons shed and release ECVs containing GFP-tagged polycystins LOV-1 and PKD-2. These ECVs are also abundant in the lumen surrounding the cilium. Electron tomography and genetic analysis indicate that ECV biogenesis occurs via budding from the plasma membrane at the ciliary base and not via fusion of multivesicular bodies (MVBs). Intraflagellar transport (IFT) and kinesin-3 KLP-6 are required for environmental release of PKD-2::GFP-containing ECVs. ECVs isolated from wild-type animals induce male tail chasing behavior, while ECVs isolated from klp-6 animals and lacking PKD-2::GFP do not. We conclude that environmentally released ECVs play a role in animal communication and mating related behaviors. PMID:24530063

  18. C. elegans ciliated sensory neurons release extracellular vesicles that function in animal communication.

    PubMed

    Wang, Juan; Silva, Malan; Haas, Leonard A; Morsci, Natalia S; Nguyen, Ken C Q; Hall, David H; Barr, Maureen M

    2014-03-03

    Cells release extracellular vesicles (ECVs) that play important roles in intercellular communication and may mediate a broad range of physiological and pathological processes. Many fundamental aspects of ECV biogenesis and signaling have yet to be determined, with ECV detection being a challenge and obstacle due to the small size (100 nm) of the ECVs. We developed an in vivo system to visualize the dynamic release of GFP-labeled ECVs. We show here that specific Caenorhabdidits elegans ciliated sensory neurons shed and release ECVs containing GFP-tagged polycystins LOV-1 and PKD-2. These ECVs are also abundant in the lumen surrounding the cilium. Electron tomography and genetic analysis indicate that ECV biogenesis occurs via budding from the plasma membrane at the ciliary base and not via fusion of multivesicular bodies. Intraflagellar transport and kinesin-3 KLP-6 are required for environmental release of PKD-2::GFP-containing ECVs. ECVs isolated from wild-type animals induce male tail-chasing behavior, while ECVs isolated from klp-6 animals and lacking PKD-2::GFP do not. We conclude that environmentally released ECVs play a role in animal communication and mating-related behaviors.

  19. Lhx2 Determines Odorant Receptor Expression Frequency in Mature Olfactory Sensory Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Guangfan; Titlow, William B.; Biecker, Stephanie M.; Stromberg, Arnold J.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract A developmental program of epigenetic repression prepares each mammalian olfactory sensory neuron (OSN) to strongly express one allele from just one of hundreds of odorant receptor (OR) genes, but what completes this process of OR gene choice by driving the expression of this allele is incompletely understood. Conditional deletion experiments in mice demonstrate that Lhx2 is necessary for normal expression frequencies of nearly all ORs and all trace amine-associated receptors, irrespective of whether the deletion of Lhx2 is initiated in immature or mature OSNs. Given previous evidence that Lhx2 binds OR gene control elements, these findings indicate that Lhx2 is directly involved in driving OR expression. The data also support the conclusion that OR expression is necessary to allow immature OSNs to complete differentiation and become mature. In contrast to the robust effects of conditional deletion of Lhx2, the loss of Emx2 has