Send to

Choose Destination
Neuropsychopharmacology. 2017 Apr;42(5):1146-1156. doi: 10.1038/npp.2016.275. Epub 2016 Dec 8.

A Feedforward Inhibitory Circuit Mediated by CB1-Expressing Fast-Spiking Interneurons in the Nucleus Accumbens.

Author information

Department of Neuroscience, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.


The nucleus accumbens (NAc) gates motivated behaviors through the functional output of principle medium spiny neurons (MSNs), whereas dysfunctional output of NAc MSNs contributes to a variety of psychiatric disorders. Fast-spiking interneurons (FSIs) are sparsely distributed throughout the NAc, forming local feedforward inhibitory circuits. It remains elusive how FSI-based feedforward circuits regulate the output of NAc MSNs. Here, we investigated a distinct subpopulation of NAc FSIs that express the cannabinoid receptor type-1 (CB1). Using a combination of paired electrophysiological recordings and pharmacological approaches, we characterized and compared feedforward inhibition of NAc MSNs from CB1+ FSIs and lateral inhibition from recurrent MSN collaterals. We observed that CB1+ FSIs exerted robust inhibitory control over a large percentage of nearby MSNs in contrast to local MSN collaterals that provided only sparse and weak inhibitory input to their neighboring MSNs. Furthermore, CB1+ FSI-mediated feedforward inhibition was preferentially suppressed by endocannabinoid (eCB) signaling, whereas MSN-mediated lateral inhibition was unaffected. Finally, we demonstrated that CB1+ FSI synapses onto MSNs are capable of undergoing experience-dependent long-term depression in a voltage- and eCB-dependent manner. These findings demonstrated that CB1+ FSIs are a major source of local inhibitory control of MSNs and a critical component of the feedforward inhibitory circuits regulating the output of the NAc.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Nature Publishing Group Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center