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Cell Rep. 2018 Feb 27;22(9):2370-2382. doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2018.02.016.

Action Selection and Flexible Switching Controlled by the Intralaminar Thalamic Neurons.

Author information

1
Department of Molecular Genetics, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Fukushima Medical University School of Medicine, Fukushima 960-1295, Japan.
2
Department of Neurophysiology, Graduate School of Biomedical and Health Sciences, Hiroshima University, Hiroshima 734-8553, Japan.
3
Department of Pharmacology, Fukushima Medical University School of Medicine, Fukushima 960-1295, Japan.
4
Department of Systems Neuroscience, Fukushima Medical University School of Medicine, Fukushima 960-1295, Japan.
5
Department of Molecular Genetics, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, Fukushima Medical University School of Medicine, Fukushima 960-1295, Japan; Core Research for Evolutional Science and Technology, Japan Science and Technology Agency, Kawaguchi 332-0012, Japan. Electronic address: kazuto@fmu.ac.jp.

Abstract

Learning processes contributing to appropriate selection and flexible switching of behaviors are mediated through the dorsal striatum, a key structure of the basal ganglia circuit. The major inputs to striatal subdivisions are provided from the intralaminar thalamic nuclei, including the central lateral nucleus (CL) and parafascicular nucleus (PF). Thalamostriatal neurons in the PF modulate the acquisition and performance of stimulus-response learning. Here, we address the roles of the CL thalamostriatal neurons in learning processes by using a selective neural pathway targeting technique. We show that the CL neurons are essential for the performance of stimulus-response learning and for behavioral flexibility, including reversal and attentional set-shifting of learned responses. In addition, chemogenetic suppression of neural activity supports the requirements of these neurons for behavioral flexibility. Our results suggest that the main contribution of the CL thalamostriatal neurons is functional control of the basal ganglia circuit linked to the prefrontal cortex.

KEYWORDS:

action selection; behavioral flexibility; central lateral nucleus; chemogenetics; immunotoxin targeting; intralaminar thalamic nucleus; lentiviral vector; retrograde gene transfer

PMID:
29490273
DOI:
10.1016/j.celrep.2018.02.016
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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