Contribution of interneuron subtype-specific GABAergic signalling to emergent sensory processing in mouse somatosensory whisker barrel cortex

Baruchin, L. J., Ghezzi, F., Kohl, M. M. and Butt, S. J.B. (2021) Contribution of interneuron subtype-specific GABAergic signalling to emergent sensory processing in mouse somatosensory whisker barrel cortex. Cerebral Cortex, (doi: 10.1093/cercor/bhab363) (Early Online Publication)

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Abstract

Mammalian neocortex is important for conscious processing of sensory information with balanced glutamatergic and GABAergic signaling fundamental to this function. Yet little is known about how this interaction arises despite increasing insight into early GABAergic interneuron (IN) circuits. To study this, we assessed the contribution of specific INs to the development of sensory processing in the mouse whisker barrel cortex, specifically the role of INs in early speed coding and sensory adaptation. In wild-type animals, both speed processing and adaptation were present as early as the layer 4 critical period of plasticity and showed refinement over the period leading to active whisking onset. To test the contribution of IN subtypes, we conditionally silenced action-potential-dependent GABA release in either somatostatin (SST) or vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP) INs. These genetic manipulations influenced both spontaneous and sensory-evoked cortical activity in an age- and layer-dependent manner. Silencing SST + INs reduced early spontaneous activity and abolished facilitation in sensory adaptation observed in control pups. In contrast, VIP + IN silencing had an effect towards the onset of active whisking. Silencing either IN subtype had no effect on speed coding. Our results show that these IN subtypes contribute to early sensory processing over the first few postnatal weeks.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Early Online Publication
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Kohl, Dr Michael
Authors: Baruchin, L. J., Ghezzi, F., Kohl, M. M., and Butt, S. J.B.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Psychology & Neuroscience
Journal Name:Cerebral Cortex
Publisher:Oxford University Press
ISSN:1047-3211
ISSN (Online):1460-2199
Published Online:06 October 2021

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