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Nat Neurosci. 2015 Sep;18(9):1299-1309. doi: 10.1038/nn.4082. Epub 2015 Aug 3.

Dynamic rewiring of neural circuits in the motor cortex in mouse models of Parkinson's disease.

Guo L#1,2, Xiong H#1,2, Kim JI#3,4,5, Wu YW#3,4,5, Lalchandani RR3,4,5, Cui Y1,2, Shu Y1,2, Xu T1,2, Ding JB3,4,5.

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Britton Chance Center for Biomedical Photonics, Wuhan National Laboratory for Optoelectronics-Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430074, China.
MoE Key Laboratory for Biomedical Photonics, Department of Biomedical Engineering, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430074, China.
Department of Neurosurgery, USA.
Department of Neurology and Neurological Sciences, USA.
Stanford University School of Medicine, USA.
Contributed equally


Dynamic adaptations in synaptic plasticity are critical for learning new motor skills and maintaining memory throughout life, which rapidly decline with Parkinson's disease (PD). Plasticity in the motor cortex is important for acquisition and maintenance of motor skills, but how the loss of dopamine in PD leads to disrupted structural and functional plasticity in the motor cortex is not well understood. Here we used mouse models of PD and two-photon imaging to show that dopamine depletion resulted in structural changes in the motor cortex. We further discovered that dopamine D1 and D2 receptor signaling selectively and distinctly regulated these aberrant changes in structural and functional plasticity. Our findings suggest that both D1 and D2 receptor signaling regulate motor cortex plasticity, and loss of dopamine results in atypical synaptic adaptations that may contribute to the impairment of motor performance and motor memory observed in PD.

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