Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Nature Neuroscience Contents: July 2017 Volume 20 Number 7, pp 897 - 1033

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Nature Neuroscience


July 2017 Volume 20, Issue 7

News and Views
Technical Report

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News and Views


A checkpoint to pain   pp897 - 899
Michael Hirth, Jagadeesh Gandla and Rohini Kuner
The checkpoint pathway consisting of programmed death ligand 1 (PD-L1) and its receptor, PD-1, modulates immune function in cancer and infection, but unexpectedly, it also silences pain signals in nerves.

See also: Article by Chen et al.

Direction selectivity starts early   pp899 - 901
Qi Fang and Huizhong W Tao
Disruption of retinal direction selectivity reveals both peripheral and central computations contributing to direction selectivity in mouse visual cortex. These mechanisms work together to better encode motion directions and speeds.

See also: Article by Hillier et al.

The thalamic paradox   pp901 - 902
László Acsády
Most thalamic research has focused on sensory transmission. Now three independent groups reveal the thalamus to be critical in behaviors linked to frontal cortex and the maintenance of persistent cortical activity during delays.

See also: Article by Bolkan et al.

Sampling memory to make profitable choices   pp903 - 904
Brice A Kuhl and Nicole M Long
A computational model explains how memories of past rewards guide value-based choices. Incorporating behavioral and functional MRI evidence, the findings indicate that 'sampling' from individual memories of past rewards influences choices.

See also: Article by Bornstein & Norman

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Reduced sensory synaptic excitation impairs motor neuron function via Kv2.1 in spinal muscular atrophy   pp905 - 916
Emily V Fletcher, Christian M Simon, John G Pagiazitis, Joshua I Chalif, Aleksandra Vukojicic et al.
The authors show that in a mouse model of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), there is a reduction in sensory synaptic drive that leads to motor neuron dysfunction and motor behavior impairments. SMA motor neurons showed a lower surface expression of Kv2.1 potassium channels and reduced spiking ability. Increasing neuronal activity pharmacologically led to the normalization of Kv2.1 surface expression and an improvement in motor function.

PD-L1 inhibits acute and chronic pain by suppressing nociceptive neuron activity via PD-1   pp917 - 926
Gang Chen, Yong Ho Kim, Hui Li, Hao Luo, Da-Lu Liu et al.
The authors identify programmed cell death ligand-1 (PD-L1), an immunity suppressor produced by cancer cells, as a new pain inhibitor and a neuromodulator. They report that PD-L1 is produced by melanoma and normal neural tissues and that it inhibits acute and chronic pain. Via activation of PD-1, its receptor, PD-L1 decreases the excitability of nociceptive neurons in mouse and human dorsal root ganglia.

See also: News and Views by Hirth et al.

The cellular mechanism for water detection in the mammalian taste system   pp927 - 933
Dhruv Zocchi, Gunther Wennemuth and Yuki Oka
The authors find that mammalian acid-sensing taste receptor cells, previously shown to be putative sour taste sensors, also mediate responses to water. Optogenetic activation of this population of cells in thirsty mice induced robust drinking response in the absence of water. This study shows that acid-sensing TRCs contribute to the detection of water in the oral cavity.

Cancer-induced anorexia and malaise are mediated by CGRP neurons in the parabrachial nucleus   pp934 - 942
Carlos A Campos, Anna J Bowen, Sung Han, Brent E Wisse, Richard D Palmiter et al.
Most cancer patients experience loss of appetite and feelings of illness, which contribute to cancer-related deaths and morbidity. The authors demonstrate that, in mice, activation of a subset of neurons in the parabrachial nucleus mediate cancer-induced anorexia and associated sickness behaviors.

A cerebellum-like circuit in the auditory system cancels responses to self-generated sounds   pp943 - 950
Shobhit Singla, Conor Dempsey, Richard Warren, Armen G Enikolopov and Nathaniel B Sawtell
The authors provide evidence that a cerebellum-like structure at the initial stage of mammalian auditory processing (the dorsal cochlear nucleus) functions to cancel out self-generated sounds. A similar function has been established for cerebellum-like structures in electroreceptive fish, suggesting a conserved function for these structures across vertebrates.

Cortical gamma band synchronization through somatostatin interneurons   pp951 - 959
Julia Veit, Richard Hakim, Monika P Jadi, Terrence J Sejnowski and Hillel Adesnik
The authors establish a critical role for somatostatin interneurons in visually induced gamma oscillations in the primary visual cortex of mice. Optogenetic manipulations in awake animals, combined with an innovative computational model with multiple interneuron subtypes, provide a mechanism for the synchronization of neural firing across the retinotopic map.

Causal evidence for retina-dependent and -independent visual motion computations in mouse cortex   pp960 - 968
Daniel Hillier, Michele Fiscella, Antonia Drinnenberg, Stuart Trenholm, Santiago B Rompani et al.
The authors monitored neuronal activity in mouse visual cortex during visual-motion stimulation and perturbed retinal direction selectivity. After perturbation, the proportion of posterior-motion-preferring cortical cells decreased, and their response at higher stimulus speeds was reduced. Thus, functionally distinct, retina-dependent and retina-independent computations of visual motion exist in mouse cortex.

See also: News and Views by Fang & Tao

Attention-related changes in correlated neuronal activity arise from normalization mechanisms   pp969 - 977
Bram-Ernst Verhoef and John H R Maunsell
Attention changes correlations between neuronal responses. In this study, Verhoef and Maunsell use multielectrode recordings in monkeys to reveal a link between normalization mechanisms, correlated neuronal activity and attention. The findings show that normalization mechanisms shape response correlations and that these correlations change when attention biases normalization mechanisms.

Identification of a motor-to-auditory pathway important for vocal learning   pp978 - 986
Todd F Roberts, Erin Hisey, Masashi Tanaka, Matthew G Kearney, Gaurav Chattree et al.
Although vocal learning is widely speculated to depend on motor to auditory (i.e., forward) pathways, the neurons that convey forward signals important to vocal learning remain unknown. Here the authors identify neurons that transmit signals from songbird motor to auditory regions and demonstrate their role in vocal learning.

Thalamic projections sustain prefrontal activity during working memory maintenance   pp987 - 996
Scott S Bolkan, Joseph M Stujenske, Sebastien Parnaudeau, Timothy J Spellman, Caroline Rauffenbart et al.
Using pathway-specific optogenetic inhibition, the authors demonstrate that projections from the mediodorsal thalamus to prefrontal cortex support the maintenance of working memory, while prefrontal-thalamic projections support subsequent choice selection. Thalamo-prefrontal projections have a circuit-specific role in sustaining prefrontal delay-period activity, a neuronal signature required for successful task performance.

See also: News and Views by Acsády

Reinstated episodic context guides sampling-based decisions for reward   pp997 - 1003
Aaron M Bornstein and Kenneth A Norman
The authors demonstrate that decisions for reward can have more a complicated dependence on past experiences than previously believed. Previous models describe decisions as influenced by rewards received in similar situations. Here the authors show that experiences that share only incidental features can also reemerge to bias present choices.

See also: News and Views by Kuhl & Long

Rich cell-type-specific network topology in neocortical microcircuitry   pp1004 - 1013
Eyal Gal, Michael London, Amir Globerson, Srikanth Ramaswamy, Michael W Reimann et al.
To unravel structural regularities in neocortical networks, Gal et al. analyzed a biologically constrained model of a neocortical microcircuit. Using extended graph theory, they found multiple cell-type-specific wiring features, including small-word and rich-club topologies that might contribute to the large repertoire of computations performed by the neocortex.

Flexible information routing by transient synchrony   pp1014 - 1022
Agostina Palmigiano, Theo Geisel, Fred Wolf and Demian Battaglia
Brain function relies on flexible communication between cortical regions. It has been proposed that changing patterns of oscillatory coherence underlie information routing. However, oscillations in vivo are very irregular. This study shows that short-lived and stochastic oscillatory bursts coordinate across areas to selectively modulate interareal communication.

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Technical Report


A fluoro-Nissl dye identifies pericytes as distinct vascular mural cells during in vivo brain imaging   pp1023 - 1032
Eyiyemisi C Damisah, Robert A Hill, Lei Tong, Katie N Murray and Jaime Grutzendler
No techniques exist for the precise identification of vascular pericytes. Here the authors identify and characterize a fluorescent dye that exclusively labels pericytes. Using this tool for intravital imaging of the mouse brain, the authors provide conclusive evidence that these cells are molecularly and functionally distinct from all other brain and vascular cells.



Addendum: A viral strategy for targeting and manipulating interneurons across vertebrate species   p1033
Jordane Dimidschstein, Qian Chen, Robin Tremblay, Stephanie L Rogers, Giuseppe-Antonio Saldi et al.



Corrigendum: Opportunities and challenges in modeling human brain disorders in transgenic primates   p1033
Charles Jennings, Rogier Landman, Yang Zhou, Jitendra Sharma, Julia Hyman et al.

Corrigendum: A viral strategy for targeting and manipulating interneurons across vertebrate species   p1033
Jordane Dimidschstein, Qian Chen, Robin Tremblay, Stephanie L Rogers, Giuseppe-Antonio Saldi et al.



Erratum: Infantile amnesia reflects a developmental critical period for hippocampal learning   p1033
Alessio Travaglia, Reto Bisaz, Eric S Sweet, Robert D Blitzer and Cristina M Alberini

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