Literature context: -orexin Phoenix Pharmaceuticals RRID:AB_2315019 Mouse anti-beta subunit cholera
Classical mechanisms through which brain-derived molecules influence behavior include neuronal synaptic communication and neuroendocrine signaling. Here we provide evidence for an alternative neural communication mechanism that is relevant for food intake control involving cerebroventricular volume transmission of the neuropeptide melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH). Results reveal that the cerebral ventricles receive input from approximately one-third of MCH-producing neurons. Moreover, MCH cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) levels increase prior to nocturnal feeding and following chemogenetic activation of MCH-producing neurons. Utilizing a dual viral vector approach, additional results reveal that selective activation of putative CSF-projecting MCH neurons increases food intake. In contrast, food intake was reduced following immunosequestration of MCH endogenously present in CSF, indicating that neuropeptide transmission through the cerebral ventricles is a physiologically relevant signaling pathway for energy balance control. Collectively these results suggest that neural-CSF volume transmission signaling may be a common neurobiological mechanism for the control of fundamental behaviors.
Literature context: nce; orexin (catalog #H-003-30; RRID:AB_2315019) and MCH (catalog #H-070-47; RR
Synaptic transmission controls brain activity and behaviors, including food intake. Leptin, an adipocyte-derived hormone, acts on neurons located in the lateral hypothalamic area (LHA) to maintain energy homeostasis and regulate food intake behavior. The specific synaptic mechanisms, cell types, and neural projections mediating this effect remain unclear. In male mice, using pathway-specific retrograde tracing, whole-cell patch-clamp recordings and post hoc cell type identification, we found that leptin reduces excitatory synaptic strength onto both melanin-concentrating hormone- and orexin-expressing neurons projecting from the LHA to the ventral tegmental area (VTA), which may affect dopamine signaling and motivation for feeding. A presynaptic mechanism mediated by distinct intracellular signaling mechanisms may account for this regulation by leptin. The regulatory effects of leptin depend on intact leptin receptor signaling. Interestingly, the synaptic regulatory function of leptin in the LHA-to-VTA neuronal pathway is highly sensitive to energy states: both energy deficiency (acute fasting) and excessive energy storage (high-fat diet-induced obesity) blunt the effect of leptin. These data revealed that leptin may regulate synaptic transmission in the LHA-to-VTA neurocircuitry in an inverted "U-shape" fashion dependent on plasma glucose levels and related to metabolic states.SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The lateral hypothalamic area (LHA) to ventral tegmental area (VTA) projection is an important neural pathway involved in balancing whole-body energy states and reward. We found that the excitatory synaptic inputs to both orexin- and melanin-concentrating hormone expressing LHA neurons projecting to the VTA were suppressed by leptin, a peptide hormone derived from adipocytes that signals peripheral energy status to the brain. Interestingly, energy states seem to affect how leptin regulates synaptic transmission since both the depletion of energy induced by acute food deprivation and excessive storage of energy by high-fat diet feeding dampen the suppressive effect of leptin on synaptic transmission. Together, these data show that leptin regulates synaptic transmission and might be important for maintaining energy homeostasis.
Literature context: maceuticals, catalog #H-003-30, RRID:AB_2315019 1:1000), rabbit anti-cocaine- a
The mesolimbic dopamine pathway receives inputs from numerous regions of the brain as part of a neural system that detects rewarding stimuli and coordinates a behavioral response. The capacity to simultaneously map and molecularly define the components of this complex multisynaptic circuit would thus advance our understanding of the determinants of motivated behavior. To accomplish this, we have constructed pseudorabies virus (PRV) strains in which viral propagation and fluorophore expression are activated only after exposure to Cre recombinase. Once activated in Cre-expressing neurons, the virus serially labels chains of presynaptic neurons. Dual injection of GFP and mCherry tracing viruses simultaneously illuminates nigrostriatal and mesolimbic circuitry and shows no overlap, demonstrating that PRV transmission is confined to synaptically connected neurons. To molecularly profile mesolimbic dopamine neurons and their presynaptic inputs, we injected Cre-conditional GFP virus into the NAc of (anti-GFP) nanobody-L10 transgenic mice and immunoprecipitated translating ribosomes from neurons infected after retrograde tracing. Analysis of purified RNA revealed an enrichment of transcripts expressed in neurons of the dorsal raphe nuclei and lateral hypothalamus that project to the mesolimbic dopamine circuit. These studies identify important inputs to the mesolimbic dopamine pathway and further show that PRV circuit-directed translating ribosome affinity purification can be broadly applied to identify molecularly defined neurons comprising complex, multisynaptic circuits.SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The mesolimbic dopamine circuit integrates signals from key brain regions to detect and respond to rewarding stimuli. To further define this complex multisynaptic circuit, we constructed a panel of Cre recombinase-activated pseudorabies viruses (PRVs) that enabled retrograde tracing of neural inputs that terminate on Cre-expressing neurons. Using these viruses and Retro-TRAP (translating ribosome affinity purification), a previously reported molecular profiling method, we developed a novel technique that provides anatomic as well as molecular information about the neural components of polysynaptic circuits. We refer to this new method as PRV-Circuit-TRAP (PRV circuit-directed TRAP). Using it, we have identified major projections to the mesolimbic dopamine circuit from the lateral hypothalamus and dorsal raphe nucleus and defined a discrete subset of transcripts expressed in these projecting neurons, which will allow further characterization of this important pathway. Moreover, the method we report is general and can be applied to the study of other neural circuits.
In the lateral hypothalamus, groups of functionally related cells tend to be widely scattered rather than confined to discrete, anatomically distinct units. However, by using parvalbumin (PV)-specific antibodies, a solitary, compact cord of PV-immunoreactive cells (the PV1-nucleus) has been identified in the ventrolateral tuberal hypothalamus in various species. Here we describe the topography, the chemo-, cyto-, and myeloarchitectonics, and the ultrastructure of this PV1-nucleus in rodents. The PV1-nucleus is located within the ventrolateral division of the medial forebrain bundle. In the horizontal plane, it has a length of 1 mm in mice and 2 mm in rats. PV-immunoreactive perikarya fall into two distinct size categories and number (~800 in rats and ~400 in mice). They are intermingled with PV-negative neurons and coarse axons of the medial forebrain bundle, some of which are PV-positive. Symmetric and asymmetric synapses, as well as PV-positive and PV-negative fiber endings, terminate on the perikarya of both PV-positive and PV-negative neurons. PV-positive neurons of the PV1-nucleus express glutamate, not γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA), the neurotransmitter that is usually associated with PV-containing nerve cells. Although we could not find evidence that PV1 neurons express either catecholamines or known neuropeptides, they sometimes are interspersed with the fibers and terminals of such cells. From its analogous topographical situation, the PV1-nucleus could correspond to the lateral tuberal nucleus in humans. We anticipate that the presence of the marker protein PV in the PV1-nucleus of the rodent hypothalamus will facilitate future studies relating to the connectivity, transcriptomics, and function of this entity.
Polymorphisms of the gene TCF7L2 (transcription factor 7-like 2) are strongly associated with the development and progression of type 2 diabetes. TCF7L2 is important in the development of peripheral organs such as adipocytes, pancreas, and the intestine. However, very little is known about its expression elsewhere. In this study we used in situ hybridization histochemistry to show that TCF7L2 has a unique expression pattern in the mouse brain. TCF7L2 is expressed in two distinct populations. First, it is highly expressed in thalamic and tectal structures. Additionally, TCF7L2 mRNA is expressed at moderate to low levels in specific cells of the hypothalamus, preoptic nucleus, and circumventricular organs. Collectively, these patterns of expression suggest that TCF7L2 has distinct functions within the brain, with a general role in the development and maintenance of thalamic and midbrain neurons, and then a distinct role in autonomic homeostasis.