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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/18986

Title: Synaptic Plasticity in Basal Ganglia Output Neurons in Parkinson's Disease Patients
Authors: Prescott, Ian
Advisor: Hutchison, William D.
Dostrovsky, Jonathan O.
Department: Physiology
Keywords: Parkinson's disease
substantia nigra
synaptic plasticity
basal ganglia
Issue Date: 17-Feb-2010
Abstract: Parkinson’s disease (PD) is characterized by the loss of dopamine in the basal ganglia and leads to paucity of movements, rigidity of the limbs, and rest tremor. Synaptic plasticity was characterized in the substantia nigra pars reticulata (SNr), a basal ganglia output structure, in 18 PD patients undergoing implantation of deep brain stimulating electrodes. Field evoked potentials (fEPs) in SNr were measured with one microelectrode using single pulses from a second microelectrode ~ 1 mm away. High frequency stimulation (HFS – 4 trains of 2s at 100Hz) in the SNr failed to induce a lasting change in test fEPs amplitudes in patients OFF medication. Following L-Dopa, HFS induced a potentiation of the fEPs that lasted more than 150s. Our findings suggest that extrastriatal dopamine modulates activity dependent synaptic plasticity at basal ganglia output neurons. Dopamine medication state clearly impacts fEP amplitude, and the lasting nature of the increase is reminiscent of LTP-like changes, indicating that aberrant synaptic plasticity may play a role in the pathophysiology of PD.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/18986
Appears in Collections:Master
Department of Physiology - Master theses

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