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Anterior thalamic lesions stop synaptic plasticity in retrosplenial cortex slices: expanding the pathology of diencephalic amnesia

Garden, Derek L. F., Massey, Peter V., Caruana, Douglas A., Johnson, Ben, Warburton, E. Clea, Aggleton, John Patrick and Bashir, Zafar I. 2009. Anterior thalamic lesions stop synaptic plasticity in retrosplenial cortex slices: expanding the pathology of diencephalic amnesia. Brain 132 (7) , pp. 1847-1857. 10.1093/brain/awp090

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Abstract

Recent, convergent evidence places the anterior thalamic nuclei at the heart of diencephalic amnesia. However, the reasons for the severe memory loss in diencephalic amnesia remain unknown. A potential clue comes from the dense, reciprocal connections between the anterior thalamic nuclei and retrosplenial cortex, another region vital for memory. We now report a loss of synaptic plasticity [long-term depression (LTD)] in rat retrosplenial cortex slices months following an anterior thalamic lesion. The loss of LTD was lamina-specific, occurring only in superficial layers of the cortex and was associated with a decrease in GABAA-mediated inhibitory transmission. As retrosplenial cortex is itself vital for memory, this distal lesion effect will amplify the impact of anterior thalamic lesions. These findings not only provide novel insights into the functional pathology of diencephalic amnesia and have implications for the aetiology of the posterior cingulate hypoactivity in Alzheimer's disease, but also show how distal changes in plasticity could contribute to diaschisis.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Psychology
Medicine
Neuroscience and Mental Health Research Institute (NMHRI)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0321 Neuroscience. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry
Uncontrolled Keywords: diencephalic amnesia; long-term depression; diaschisis; retrosplenial cortex; anterior thalamus; Alzheimer's disease
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISSN: 0006-8950
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 02:42
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/11354

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