bims-climfi Biomed News
on Cerebellar cortical circuitry
Issue of 2019‒01‒27
two papers selected by
Jun Maruta
Mount Sinai Health System

  1. Front Cell Neurosci. 2018 ;12 513
      Heterogeneous populations of cerebellar Purkinje cells (PCs) are arranged into separate longitudinal stripes, which have different topographic afferent and efferent axonal connections presumably involved in different functions, and also show different electrophysiological properties in firing pattern and synaptic plasticity. However, whether the differences in molecular expression that define heterogeneous PC populations affect their electrophysiological properties has not been much clarified. Since the expression pattern of many of such molecules, including glutamate transporter EAAT4, replicates that of aldolase C or zebrin II, we recorded from PCs of different "zebrin types" (zebrin-positive = aldolase C-positive = Z+; and Z-) in identified neighboring stripes in vermal lobule VIII, in which Z+ and Z- stripes occupy similar widths, in the Aldoc-Venus mouse cerebellar slice preparation. Regarding basic cellular electrophysiological properties, no significant differences were observed in input resistance or in occurrence probability of types of firing patterns between Z+ and Z- PCs. However, the firing frequency of the tonic firing type was higher in Z- PCs than in Z+ PCs. In the case of parallel fiber (PF)-PC synaptic transmission, no significant differences were observed between Z+ and Z- PCs in interval dependency of paired pulse facilitation or in time course of synaptic current measured without or with the blocker of glutamate receptor desensitization. These results indicate that different expression levels of the molecules that are associated with the zebrin type may affect the intrinsic firing property of PCs but not directly affect the basic electrophysiological properties of PF-PC synaptic transmission significantly in lobule VIII. The results suggest that the zebrin types of PCs in lobule VIII is linked with some intrinsic electrophysiological neuronal characteristics which affect the firing frequency of PCs. However, the results also suggest that the molecular expression differences linked with zebrin types of PCs does not much affect basic electrophysiological properties of PF-PC synaptic transmission in a physiological condition in lobule VIII.
    Keywords:  Purkinje cell; aldolase C; cerebellum; firing pattern; glutamate transporter; parallel fiber; zebrin II
  2. Elife. 2019 Jan 25. pii: e42138. [Epub ahead of print]8
      The cerebellum integrates sensory stimuli and motor actions to enable smooth coordination and motor learning. Here we harness the innate behavioral repertoire of the larval zebrafish to characterize the spatiotemporal dynamics of feature coding across the entire Purkinje cell population during visual stimuli and the reflexive behaviors that they elicit. Population imaging reveals three spatially-clustered regions of Purkinje cell activity along the rostrocaudal axis. Complementary single-cell electrophysiological recordings assign these Purkinje cells to one of three functional phenotypes that encode a specific visual, and not motor, signal via complex spikes. In contrast, simple spike output of most Purkinje cells is strongly driven by motor-related tail and eye signals. Interactions between complex and simple spikes show heterogeneous modulation patterns across different Purkinje cells, which become temporally restricted during swimming episodes. Our findings reveal how sensorimotor information is encoded by individual Purkinje cells and organized into behavioral modules across the entire cerebellum.
    Keywords:  neuroscience; zebrafish