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      Cerebellum in Levodopa-Induced Dyskinesias: The Unusual Suspect in the Motor Network

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          The exact mechanisms that generate levodopa-induced dyskinesias (LID) during chronic levodopa therapy for Parkinson’s disease (PD) are not yet fully established. The most widely accepted theories incriminate the non-physiological synthesis, release and reuptake of dopamine generated by exogenously administered levodopa in the striatum, and the aberrant plasticity in the cortico-striatal loops. However, normal motor performance requires the correct recruitment of motor maps. This depends on a high level of synergy within the primary motor cortex (M1) as well as between M1 and other cortical and subcortical areas, for which dopamine is necessary. The plastic mechanisms within M1, which are crucial for the maintenance of this synergy, are disrupted both during “OFF” and dyskinetic states in PD. When tested without levodopa, dyskinetic patients show loss of treatment benefits on long-term potentiation and long-term depression-like plasticity of the intracortical circuits. When tested with the regular pulsatile levodopa doses, they show further impairment of the M1 plasticity, such as inability to depotentiate an already facilitated synapse and paradoxical facilitation in response to afferent input aimed at synaptic inhibition. Dyskinetic patients have also severe impairment of the associative, sensorimotor plasticity of M1 attributed to deficient cerebellar modulation of sensory afferents to M1. Here, we review the anatomical and functional studies, including the recently described bidirectional connections between the cerebellum and the basal ganglia that support a key role of the cerebellum in the generation of LID. This model stipulates that aberrant neuronal synchrony in PD with LID may propagate from the subthalamic nucleus to the cerebellum and “lock” the cerebellar cortex in a hyperactive state. This could affect critical cerebellar functions such as the dynamic and discrete modulation of M1 plasticity and the matching of motor commands with sensory information from the environment during motor performance. We propose that in dyskinesias, M1 neurons have lost the ability to depotentiate an activated synapse when exposed to acute pulsatile, non-physiological, dopaminergic surges and become abnormally receptive to unfiltered, aberrant, and non-salient afferent inputs from the environment. The motor program selection in response to such non-salient and behaviorally irrelevant afferent inputs would be abnormal and involuntary. The motor responses are worsened by the lack of normal subcortico–cortical inputs from cerebellum and basal ganglia, because of the aberrant plasticity at their own synapses. Artificial cerebellar stimulation might help re-establish the cerebellar and basal ganglia control over the non-salient inputs to the motor areas during synaptic dopaminergic surges.

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          Most cited references 113

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          Functional significance of the cortico-subthalamo-pallidal 'hyperdirect' pathway.

          How the motor-related cortical areas modulate the activity of the output nuclei of the basal ganglia is an important issue for understanding the mechanisms of motor control by the basal ganglia. The cortico-subthalamo-pallidal 'hyperdirect' pathway conveys powerful excitatory effects from the motor-related cortical areas to the globus pallidus, bypassing the striatum, with shorter conduction time than effects conveyed through the striatum. We emphasize the functional significance of the 'hyperdirect' pathway and propose a dynamic 'center-surround model' of basal ganglia function in the control of voluntary limb movements. When a voluntary movement is about to be initiated by cortical mechanisms, a corollary signal conveyed through the cortico-subthalamo-pallidal 'hyperdirect' pathway first inhibits large areas of the thalamus and cerebral cortex that are related to both the selected motor program and other competing programs. Then, another corollary signal through the cortico-striato-pallidal 'direct' pathway disinhibits their targets and releases only the selected motor program. Finally, the third corollary signal possibly through the cortico-striato-external pallido-subthalamo-internal pallidal 'indirect' pathway inhibits their targets extensively. Through this sequential information processing, only the selected motor program is initiated, executed and terminated at the selected timing, whereas other competing programs are canceled.
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            The cerebellum communicates with the basal ganglia.

            The cerebral cortex is interconnected with two major subcortical structures: the basal ganglia and the cerebellum. How and where cerebellar circuits interact with basal ganglia circuits has been a longstanding question. Using transneuronal transport of rabies virus in macaques, we found that a disynaptic pathway links an output stage of cerebellar processing, the dentate nucleus, with an input stage of basal ganglia processing, the striatum.
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              Loss of bidirectional striatal synaptic plasticity in L-DOPA-induced dyskinesia.

              Long-term treatment with the dopamine precursor levodopa (L-DOPA) induces dyskinesia in Parkinson's disease (PD) patients. We divided hemiparkinsonian rats treated chronically with L-DOPA into two groups: one showed motor improvement without dyskinesia, and the other developed debilitating dyskinesias in response to the treatment. We then compared the plasticity of corticostriatal synapses between the two groups. High-frequency stimulation of cortical afferents induced long-term potentiation (LTP) of corticostriatal synapses in both groups of animals. Control and non-dyskinetic rats showed synaptic depotentiation in response to subsequent low-frequency synaptic stimulation, but dyskinetic rats did not. The depotentiation seen in both L-DOPA-treated non-dyskinetic rats and intact controls was prevented by activation of the D1 subclass of dopamine receptors or inhibition of protein phosphatases. The striata of dyskinetic rats contained abnormally high levels of phospho[Thr34]-DARPP-32, an inhibitor of protein phosphatase 1. These results indicate that abnormal information storage in corticostriatal synapses is linked with the development of L-DOPA-induced dyskinesia.

                Author and article information

                Front Neurol
                Front Neurol
                Front. Neurol.
                Frontiers in Neurology
                Frontiers Media S.A.
                18 August 2014
                : 5
                1Department of Neurology, Comprehensive Care Centre for Movement Disorders, Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology , Kerala, India
                2Centre de Neuroimagerie de Recherche (CENIR), Institut du Cerveau et de la Moelleepiniere (ICM) , Paris, France
                Author notes

                Edited by: Antonio Cerasa, Institute of Bioimaging and Molecular Physiology-CNR, Italy

                Reviewed by: Giacomo Koch, IRCCS Santa Lucia Foundation, Italy; Marco Molinari, IRCCS Santa Lucia Foundation, Italy; Silvia Clausi, IRCCS Santa Lucia Foundation, Italy

                *Correspondence: Asha Kishore, Department of Neurology, Comprehensive Care Centre for Movement Disorders, Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology (SCTIMST), Kerala 695011, India e-mail: asha@ 123456sctimst.ac.in

                This article was submitted to Movement Disorders, a section of the journal Frontiers in Neurology.

                Copyright © 2014 Kishore and Popa.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

                Page count
                Figures: 2, Tables: 0, Equations: 0, References: 146, Pages: 12, Words: 10780
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