Presentation Title

Effects of optogentics stimulation of Thalamus and GPe on behavior in rats

Faculty Mentor

Martin M. Monti, Neil G. Harris

Start Date

23-11-2019 8:45 AM

End Date

23-11-2019 9:30 AM

Location

12

Session

poster 2

Type of Presentation

Poster

Subject Area

behavioral_social_sciences

Abstract

Common consequences of severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) include cognitive and motor disorders, which are largely associated with pathway changes in the cortico-basal ganglia-thalamo-cortical (CBGTC) circuit. In post-TBI patients, neurostimulation of certain regions of this circuit has been known to positively affect motor skills and cognition. Thus, systematically modulating different nuclei and observing cognitive and behavioral changes could lead to discovery of novel stimulation targets for neurotrauma patients.

In our project, we evaluated the effects of optogenetic stimulation of the thalamus and globus pallidus externa (GPe) on cognitive and motor skills in rats, as well as the effectiveness of the chosen behavioral assessments. These experiments were a part of pilot testing for a larger study of functional connectivity of CBGTC circuit through optogenetics.

During craniotomy procedures an adeno-associated virus was injected into GPe and thalamic regions of male Sprague Dawley rats, and 3 - 4 weeks later the behavioral testing was conducted. There were two subject groups with n=8 for Thalamus and n=11 for GPe sites. Cheerio and Object-in-Place tasks were implemented to assess fine motor control and recognition and spatial memory, accordingly. Each group was tested under no, 10 Hz and 100 Hz laser stimulation. At the end of the experiments the animals were sacrificed for immunohistochemistry to verify the virus placement.

The Cheerio task measured motor function across such categories as number of drops, quality of the grip, and initial manipulation during the on and off stimulation periods. Significant differences (p=0.022) were found in the initial paw manipulation scores in the GPe group under 100 Hz compared to no stimulation. Such findings allow us to implement this task for further behavioral analyses of motor function. Object-in-Place did not yield any statistically significant results, meaning that a different cognitive task will be used in the future.

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Nov 23rd, 8:45 AM Nov 23rd, 9:30 AM

Effects of optogentics stimulation of Thalamus and GPe on behavior in rats

12

Common consequences of severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) include cognitive and motor disorders, which are largely associated with pathway changes in the cortico-basal ganglia-thalamo-cortical (CBGTC) circuit. In post-TBI patients, neurostimulation of certain regions of this circuit has been known to positively affect motor skills and cognition. Thus, systematically modulating different nuclei and observing cognitive and behavioral changes could lead to discovery of novel stimulation targets for neurotrauma patients.

In our project, we evaluated the effects of optogenetic stimulation of the thalamus and globus pallidus externa (GPe) on cognitive and motor skills in rats, as well as the effectiveness of the chosen behavioral assessments. These experiments were a part of pilot testing for a larger study of functional connectivity of CBGTC circuit through optogenetics.

During craniotomy procedures an adeno-associated virus was injected into GPe and thalamic regions of male Sprague Dawley rats, and 3 - 4 weeks later the behavioral testing was conducted. There were two subject groups with n=8 for Thalamus and n=11 for GPe sites. Cheerio and Object-in-Place tasks were implemented to assess fine motor control and recognition and spatial memory, accordingly. Each group was tested under no, 10 Hz and 100 Hz laser stimulation. At the end of the experiments the animals were sacrificed for immunohistochemistry to verify the virus placement.

The Cheerio task measured motor function across such categories as number of drops, quality of the grip, and initial manipulation during the on and off stimulation periods. Significant differences (p=0.022) were found in the initial paw manipulation scores in the GPe group under 100 Hz compared to no stimulation. Such findings allow us to implement this task for further behavioral analyses of motor function. Object-in-Place did not yield any statistically significant results, meaning that a different cognitive task will be used in the future.