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(1/10531) Cerebellar Purkinje cell simple spike discharge encodes movement velocity in primates during visuomotor arm tracking.

Pathophysiological, lesion, and electrophysiological studies suggest that the cerebellar cortex is important for controlling the direction and speed of movement. The relationship of cerebellar Purkinje cell discharge to the control of arm movement parameters, however, remains unclear. The goal of this study was to examine how movement direction and speed and their interaction-velocity-modulate Purkinje cell simple spike discharge in an arm movement task in which direction and speed were independently controlled. The simple spike discharge of 154 Purkinje cells was recorded in two monkeys during the performance of two visuomotor tasks that required the animals to track targets that moved in one of eight directions and at one of four speeds. Single-parameter regression analyses revealed that a large proportion of cells had discharge modulation related to movement direction and speed. Most cells with significant directional tuning, however, were modulated at one speed, and most cells with speed-related discharge were modulated along one direction; this suggested that the patterns of simple spike discharge were not adequately described by single-parameter models. Therefore, a regression surface was fitted to the data, which showed that the discharge could be tuned to specific direction-speed combinations (preferred velocities). The overall variability in simple spike discharge was well described by the surface model, and the velocities corresponding to maximal and minimal discharge rates were distributed uniformly throughout the workspace. Simple spike discharge therefore appears to integrate information about both the direction and speed of arm movements, thereby encoding movement velocity.  (+info)

(2/10531) Onset of nucleolar and extranucleolar transcription and expression of fibrillarin in macaque embryos developing in vitro.

Specific aims were to characterize the onset of nucleolar and extranucleolar transcription and expression of the nucleolar protein fibrillarin during preimplantation development in vitro in macaque embryos using autoradiographic and immunocytochemical techniques. Autoradiography was performed on whole embryos cultured with [3H]uridine for assessment of nucleolar (rRNA) and extranucleolar (mRNA) transcription. Expression of fibrillarin was immunocytochemically assessed in whole embryos using a primary antibody against fibrillarin and a fluorescein isothiocyanate-conjugated secondary antibody. Extranucleolar incorporation of [3H]uridine was first detected in 2-cell embryos cultured 6-10 h with [3H]uridine. Culture with alpha-amanitin prevented incorporation of label in 2-cell embryos, and treatment with ribonuclease reduced the signal to background levels, indicating that [3H]uridine was incorporated into mRNA and not rRNA or DNA. Nucleolar incorporation of [3H]uridine was not evident in pronucleate-stage or 2- to 5-cell embryos, but it was detected in one 6-cell embryo and in all 8-cell to blastocyst-stage embryos. Fibrillarin was first expressed in some 6- to 7-cell embryos, but it was consistently expressed in all 8-cell embryos. Fibrillarin was localized to the perimeter of the nucleolar precursor bodies, forming a ring that completely encapsulated these structures. Fibrillarin was not expressed in 8- to 16-cell embryos cultured with alpha-amanitin, indicating that it is transcribed, rather than recruited, at the 8-cell stage. In conclusion, in in vitro-fertilized macaque embryos developing in vitro, extranucleolar synthesis of mRNA is initiated at the 2-cell stage while the onset of nucleolar transcription occurs at the 6- to 8-cell stage, coincident with expression of fibrillarin.  (+info)

(3/10531) Association of simian virus 40 with a central nervous system lesion distinct from progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy in macaques with AIDS.

The primate polyomavirus SV40 is known to cause interstitial nephritis in primary infections and progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML) upon reactivation of a latent infection in SIV-infected macaques. We now describe a second central nervous system manifestation of SV40: a meningoencephalitis affecting cerebral gray matter, without demyelination, distinct from PML. Meningoencephalitis appears also to be a primary manifestation of SV40 infection and can be seen in conjunction with SV40-induced interstitial nephritis and pneumonitis. The difference in the lesions of meningoencephalitis and PML does not appear to be due to cellular tropism, as both oligodendrocytes and astrocytes are infected in PML and meningoencephalitis, as determined by in situ hybridization or immunohistochemistry for SV40 coupled with immunohistochemistry for cellular determinants. This is further supported by examination of SV40 nucleic acid sequences from the ori-enhancer and large-T-antigen regions, which reveals no tissue-or lesion-specific variation in SV40 sequences.  (+info)

(4/10531) Loss of D2 receptor binding with age in rhesus monkeys: importance of correction for differences in striatal size.

The relation between striatal dopamine D2 receptor binding and aging was investigated in rhesus monkeys with PET. Monkeys (n = 18, 39 to 360 months of age) were scanned with 11C-raclopride; binding potential in the striatum was estimated graphically. Because our magnetic resonance imaging analysis revealed a concomitant relation between size of striatum and age, the dynamic positron emission tomography (PET) data were corrected for possible partial volume (PV) artifacts before parameter estimation. The age-related decline in binding potential was 1% per year and was smaller than the apparent effect if the age-related change in size was ignored. This is the first in vivo demonstration of a decline in dopamine receptor binding in nonhuman primates. The rate of decline in binding potential is consistent with in vitro findings in monkeys but smaller than what has been measured previously in humans using PET. Previous PET studies in humans, however, have not corrected for PV error, although a decline in striatal size with age has been demonstrated. The results of this study suggest that PV correction must be applied to PET data to accurately detect small changes in receptor binding that may occur in parallel with structural changes in the brain.  (+info)

(5/10531) MST neuronal responses to heading direction during pursuit eye movements.

As you move through the environment, you see a radial pattern of visual motion with a focus of expansion (FOE) that indicates your heading direction. When self-movement is combined with smooth pursuit eye movements, the turning of the eye distorts the retinal image of the FOE but somehow you still can perceive heading. We studied neurons in the medial superior temporal area (MST) of monkey visual cortex, recording responses to FOE stimuli presented during fixation and smooth pursuit eye movements. Almost all neurons showed significant changes in their FOE selective responses during pursuit eye movements. However, the vector average of all the neuronal responses indicated the direction of the FOE during both fixation and pursuit. Furthermore, the amplitude of the net vector increased with increasing FOE eccentricity. We conclude that neuronal population encoding in MST might contribute to pursuit-tolerant heading perception.  (+info)

(6/10531) Eye movement deficits following ibotenic acid lesions of the nucleus prepositus hypoglossi in monkeys II. Pursuit, vestibular, and optokinetic responses.

The eyes are moved by a combination of neural commands that code eye velocity and eye position. The eye position signal is supposed to be derived from velocity-coded command signals by mathematical integration via a single oculomotor neural integrator. For horizontal eye movements, the neural integrator is thought to reside in the rostral nucleus prepositus hypoglossi (nph) and project directly to the abducens nuclei. In a previous study, permanent, serial ibotenic acid lesions of the nph in three rhesus macaques compromised the neural integrator for fixation but saccades were not affected. In the present study, to determine further whether the nph is the neural substrate for a single oculomotor neural integrator, the effects of those lesions on smooth pursuit, the vestibulo-ocular reflex (VOR), vestibular nystagmus (VN), and optokinetic nystagmus (OKN) are documented. The lesions were correlated with long-lasting deficits in eye movements, indicated most clearly by the animals' inability to maintain steady gaze in the dark. However, smooth pursuit and sinusoidal VOR in the dark, like the saccades in the previous study, were affected minimally. The gain of horizontal smooth pursuit (eye movement/target movement) decreased slightly (<25%) and phase lead increased slightly for all frequencies (0.3-1.0 Hz, +/-10 degrees target tracking), most noticeably for higher frequencies (0.8-0.7 and approximately 20 degrees for 1.0-Hz tracking). Vertical smooth pursuit was not affected significantly. Surprisingly, horizontal sinusoidal VOR gain and phase also were not affected significantly. Lesions had complex effects on both VN and OKN. The plateau of per- and postrotatory VN was shortened substantially ( approximately 50%), whereas the initial response and the time constant of decay decreased slightly. The initial OKN response also decreased slightly, and the charging phase was prolonged transiently then recovered to below normal levels like the VN time constant. Maximum steady-state, slow eye velocity of OKN decreased progressively by approximately 30% over the course of the lesions. These results support the previous conclusion that the oculomotor neural integrator is not a single neural entity and that the mathematical integrative function for different oculomotor subsystems is most likely distributed among a number of nuclei. They also show that the nph apparently is not involved in integrating smooth pursuit signals and that lesions of the nph can fractionate the VOR and nystagmic responses to adequate stimuli.  (+info)

(7/10531) Frontal cognitive impairments and saccadic deficits in low-dose MPTP-treated monkeys.

There is considerable overlap between the cognitive deficits observed in humans with frontal lobe damage and those described in patients with Parkinson's disease. Similar frontal impairments have been found in the 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3, 6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) primate model of Parkinsonism. Here we provide quantitative documentation of the cognitive, oculomotor, and skeletomotor dysfunctions of monkeys trained on a frontal task and treated with low-doses (LD) of MPTP. Two rhesus monkeys were trained to perform a spatial delayed-response task with frequent alternations between two behavioral modes (GO and NO-GO). After control recordings, the monkeys were treated with one placebo and successive LD MPTP courses. Monkey C developed motor Parkinsonian signs after a fourth course of medium-dose (MD) MPTP and later was treated with combined dopaminergic therapy (CDoT). There were no gross motor changes after the LD MPTP courses, and the average movement time (MT) did not increase. However, reaction time (RT) increased significantly. Both RT and MT were further increased in the symptomatic state, under CDoT. Self-initiated saccades became hypometric after LD MPTP treatments and their frequency decreased. Visually triggered saccades were affected to a lesser extent by the LD MPTP treatments. All saccadic parameters declined further in the symptomatic state and improved partially during CDoT. The number of GO mode (no-response, location, and early release) errors increased after MPTP treatment. The monkeys made more perseverative errors while switching from the GO to the NO-GO mode. Saccadic eye movement patterns suggest that frontal deficits were involved in most observed errors. CDoT had a differential effect on the behavioral errors. It decreased omission errors but did not improve location errors or perseverative errors. Tyrosine hydroxylase immunohistochemistry showed moderate ( approximately 70-80%) reduction in the number of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta after MPTP treatment. These results show that cognitive and motor disorders can be dissociated in the LD MPTP model and that cognitive and oculomotor impairments develop before the onset of skeletal motor symptoms. The behavioral and saccadic deficits probably result from the marked reduction of dopaminergic neurons in the midbrain. We suggest that these behavioral changes result from modified neuronal activity in the frontal cortex.  (+info)

(8/10531) Visuomotor processing as reflected in the directional discharge of premotor and primary motor cortex neurons.

Premotor and primary motor cortical neuronal firing was studied in two monkeys during an instructed delay, pursuit tracking task. The task included a premovement "cue period," during which the target was presented at the periphery of the workspace and moved to the center of the workspace along one of eight directions at one of four constant speeds. The "track period" consisted of a visually guided, error-constrained arm movement during which the animal tracked the target as it moved from the central start box along a line to the opposite periphery of the workspace. Behaviorally, the animals tracked the required directions and speeds with highly constrained trajectories. The eye movements consisted of saccades to the target at the onset of the cue period, followed by smooth pursuit intermingled with saccades throughout the cue and track periods. Initially, an analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to test for direction and period effects in the firing. Subsequently, a linear regression analysis was used to fit the average firing from the cue and track periods to a cosine model. Directional tuning as determined by a significant fit to the cosine model was a prominent feature of the discharge during both the cue and track periods. However, the directional tuning of the firing of a single cell was not always constant across the cue and track periods. Approximately one-half of the neurons had differences in their preferred directions (PDs) of >45 degrees between cue and track periods. The PD in the cue or track period was not dependent on the target speed. A second linear regression analysis based on calculation of the preferred direction in 20-ms bins (i.e., the PD trajectory) was used to examine on a finer time scale the temporal evolution of this change in directional tuning. The PD trajectories in the cue period were not straight but instead rotated over the workspace to align with the track period PD. Both clockwise and counterclockwise rotations occurred. The PD trajectories were relatively straight during most of the track period. The rotation and eventual convergence of the PD trajectories in the cue period to the preferred direction of the track period may reflect the transformation of visual information into motor commands. The widely dispersed PD trajectories in the cue period would allow targets to be detected over a wide spatial aperture. The convergence of the PD trajectories occurring at the cue-track transition may serve as a "Go" signal to move that was not explicitly supplied by the paradigm. Furthermore, the rotation and convergence of the PD trajectories may provide a mechanism for nonstandard mapping. Standard mapping refers to a sensorimotor transformation in which the stimulus is the object of the reach. Nonstandard mapping is the mapping of an arbitrary stimulus into an arbitrary movement. The shifts in the PD may allow relevant visual information from any direction to be transformed into an appropriate movement direction, providing a neural substrate for nonstandard stimulus-response mappings.  (+info)