Savio Chan, PhD; Northwestern University
Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience | Neuroscience and Neurobiology
Compelling evidence demonstrates the external globus pallidus (GPe) plays a key role in processing sensorimotor information. An anatomical projection from the GPe to the dorsal striatum (dStr) has been described for decades. However, the cellular target and functional impact of this projection remain unknown. Using cell-specific transgenic mice, modern monosynaptic tracing techniques, and optogenetics-based mapping, we discovered that GPe neurons provide inhibitory inputs to direct- and indirect-pathway striatal projection neurons (SPNs). Our results indicate that the GPe input to SPNs arises primarily from Npas1- expressing neurons and is strengthened in a chronic Parkinson’s disease (PD) model. Alterations of the GPe-SPN input in a PD model argue for the critical position of this connection in regulating basal ganglia motor output, arguing that strengthening of GPe-SPN connection is maladaptive and may underlie the hypokinetic symptoms in PD.
The Journal of Neuroscience (pre-print)
Npas1+ Pallidal Neurons Target Striatal Projection Neurons.
The Journal of Neuroscience (pre-print),
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