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      Integrated anatomical and physiological mapping of striatal afferent projections

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          The dorsomedial striatum, a key site of reward-sensitive motor output, receives extensive afferent input from cortex, thalamus and midbrain. These projections are integrated by striatal microcircuits containing both spiny projection neurons and local circuit interneurons. To explore target cell specificity of these projections, we compared inputs onto D1-dopamine receptor-positive spiny neurons, parvalbumin-positive fast-spiking interneurons and somatostatin-positive low-threshold-spiking interneurons, using cell type-specific rabies virus tracing and optogenetic-mediated projection neuron recruitment in mice. While the relative proportion of retrogradely labelled projection neurons was similar between target cell types, the convergence of inputs was systematically higher for projections onto fast-spiking interneurons. Rabies virus is frequently used to assess cell-specific anatomical connectivity but it is unclear how this correlates to synaptic connectivity and efficacy. To test this, we compared tracing data with target cell-specific measures of synaptic efficacy for anterior cingulate cortex and parafascicular thalamic projections using novel quantitative optogenetic measures. We found that target-specific patterns of convergence were extensively modified according to region of projection neuron origin and postsynaptic cell type. Furthermore, we observed significant divergence between cell type-specific anatomical connectivity and measures of excitatory synaptic strength, particularly for low-threshold-spiking interneurons. Taken together, this suggests a basic uniform connectivity map for striatal afferent inputs upon which presynaptic-postsynaptic interactions impose substantial diversity of physiological connectivity.

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          Most cited references 39

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          Monosynaptic restriction of transsynaptic tracing from single, genetically targeted neurons.

          There has never been a wholesale way of identifying neurons that are monosynaptically connected either to some other cell group or, especially, to a single cell. The best available tools, transsynaptic tracers, are unable to distinguish weak direct connections from strong indirect ones. Furthermore, no tracer has proven potent enough to label any connected neurons whatsoever when starting from a single cell. Here we present a transsynaptic tracer that crosses only one synaptic step, unambiguously identifying cells directly presynaptic to the starting population. Based on rabies virus, it is genetically targetable, allows high-level expression of any gene of interest in the synaptically coupled neurons, and robustly labels connections made to single cells. This technology should enable a far more detailed understanding of neural connectivity than has previously been possible.
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            Frontal cortex and reward-guided learning and decision-making.

            Reward-guided decision-making and learning depends on distributed neural circuits with many components. Here we focus on recent evidence that suggests four frontal lobe regions make distinct contributions to reward-guided learning and decision-making: the lateral orbitofrontal cortex, the ventromedial prefrontal cortex and adjacent medial orbitofrontal cortex, anterior cingulate cortex, and the anterior lateral prefrontal cortex. We attempt to identify common themes in experiments with human participants and with animal models, which suggest roles that the areas play in learning about reward associations, selecting reward goals, choosing actions to obtain reward, and monitoring the potential value of switching to alternative courses of action. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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              Putting a spin on the dorsal-ventral divide of the striatum.

              Since its conception three decades ago, the idea that the striatum consists of a dorsal sensorimotor part and a ventral portion processing limbic information has sparked a quest for functional correlates and anatomical characteristics of the striatal divisions. But this classic dorsal-ventral distinction might not offer the best view of striatal function. Anatomy and neurophysiology show that the two striatal areas have the same basic structure and that sharp boundaries are absent. Behaviorally, a distinction between dorsolateral and ventromedial seems most valid, in accordance with a mediolateral functional zonation imposed on the striatum by its excitatory cortical, thalamic and amygdaloid inputs. Therefore, this review presents a synthesis between the dorsal-ventral distinction and the more mediolateral-oriented functional striatal gradient.

                Author and article information

                European Journal of Neuroscience
                Eur J Neurosci
                February 22 2018
                [1 ]Department of Neuroscience; Perelman School of Medicine; University of Pennsylvania; Clinical Research Building, Room 226 Philadelphia PA 19104 USA
                [2 ]Neuroscience Graduate Group; Perelman School of Medicine; University of Pennsylvania; Philadelphia PA USA
                [3 ]Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences; Stanford University Medical School; Stanford CA USA
                © 2018




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