Selective loss of bi-directional synaptic plasticity in the direct and indirect striatal output pathways accompanies generation of parkinsonism and l-DOPA induced dyskinesia in mouse models

Sherri L. Thiele, Betty Chen, Charlotte Lo, Tracey S. Gertler, Ruth Warre, James D. Surmeier, Jonathan M. Brotchie, Joanne E. Nash*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations

Abstract

Parkinsonian symptoms arise due to over-activity of the indirect striatal output pathway, and under-activity of the direct striatal output pathway. l-DOPA-induced dyskinesia (LID) is caused when the opposite circuitry problems are established, with the indirect pathway becoming underactive, and the direct pathway becoming over-active. Here, we define synaptic plasticity abnormalities in these pathways associated with parkinsonism, symptomatic benefits of l-DOPA, and LID. We applied spike-timing dependent plasticity protocols to cortico-striatal synapses in slices from 6-OHDA-lesioned mouse models of parkinsonism and LID, generated in BAC transgenic mice with eGFP targeting the direct or indirect output pathways, with and without l-DOPA present. In naïve mice, bidirectional synaptic plasticity, i.e. LTP and LTD, was induced, resulting in an EPSP amplitude change of approximately 50% in each direction in both striatal output pathways, as shown previously. In parkinsonism and dyskinesia, both pathways exhibited unidirectional plasticity, irrespective of stimulation paradigm. In parkinsonian animals, the indirect pathway only exhibited LTP (LTP protocol: 143.5. ±. 14.6%; LTD protocol 177.7. ±. 22.3% of baseline), whereas the direct pathway only showed LTD (LTP protocol: 74.3. ±. 4.0% and LTD protocol: 63.3. ±. 8.7%). A symptomatic dose of l-DOPA restored bidirectional plasticity on both pathways to levels comparable to naïve animals (Indirect pathway: LTP protocol: 124.4. ±. 22.0% and LTD protocol: 52.1. ±. 18.5% of baseline. Direct pathway: LTP protocol: 140.7. ±. 7.3% and LTD protocol: 58.4. ±. 6.0% of baseline). In dyskinesia, in the presence of l-DOPA, the indirect pathway exhibited only LTD (LTP protocol: 68.9. ±. 21.3% and LTD protocol 52.0. ±. 14.2% of baseline), whereas in the direct pathway, only LTP could be induced (LTP protocol: 156.6. ±. 13.2% and LTD protocol 166.7. ±. 15.8% of baseline). We conclude that normal motor control requires bidirectional plasticity of both striatal outputs, which underlies the symptomatic benefits of l-DOPA. Switching from bidirectional to unidirectional plasticity drives global changes in striatal pathway excitability, and underpins parkinsonism and dyskinesia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)334-344
Number of pages11
JournalNeurobiology of Disease
Volume71
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2014

Keywords

  • BAC transgenic mouse models
  • Dyskinesia
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Slice electrophysiology
  • Striatum
  • Synaptic plasticity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology

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