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Evidence for a task-dependent switch in subthalamo-nigral basal ganglia signaling.


ABSTRACT: Basal ganglia (BG) can either facilitate or inhibit movement through excitatory and inhibitory pathways; however whether these opposing signals are dynamically regulated during healthy behavior is not known. Here, we present compelling neurophysiological evidence from three complimentary experiments in non-human primates, indicating task-specific changes in tonic BG pathway weightings during saccade behavior with different cognitive demands. First, simultaneous local field potential recording in the subthalamic nucleus (STN; BG input) and substantia nigra pars reticulata (SNr; BG output) reveals task-dependent shifts in subthalamo-nigral signals. Second, unilateral electrical stimulation of the STN, SNr, and caudate nucleus results in strikingly different saccade directionality and latency biases across the BG. Third, a simple artificial neural network representing canonical BG signaling pathways suggests that pathway weightings can be altered by cortico-BG input activation. Overall, inhibitory pathways (striato-pallidal-subthalamo-nigral) dominate during goal-driven behavior with instructed rewards, while facilitatory pathways (striato-nigral and subthalamo-pallidal-nigral) dominate during unconstrained (free reward) conditions.

SUBMITTER: Jantz JJ 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC5715140 | BioStudies | 2017-01-01T00:00:00Z

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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