Scaling our world view: How monoamines can put context into brain circuitry

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Scaling our world view : How monoamines can put context into brain circuitry. / Stratmann, Philipp; Albu-Schäffer, Alin; Jörntell, Henrik.

In: Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience, Vol. 12, 506, 20.12.2018.

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TY - JOUR

T1 - Scaling our world view

T2 - Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience

AU - Stratmann, Philipp

AU - Albu-Schäffer, Alin

AU - Jörntell, Henrik

PY - 2018/12/20

Y1 - 2018/12/20

N2 - Monoamines are presumed to be diffuse metabotropic neuromodulators of the topographically and temporally precise ionotropic circuitry which dominates CNS functions. Their malfunction is strongly implicated in motor and cognitive disorders, but their function in behavioral and cognitive processing is scarcely understood. In this paper, the principles of such a monoaminergic function are conceptualized for locomotor control. We find that the serotonergic system in the ventral spinal cord scales ionotropic signals and shows topographic order that agrees with differential gain modulation of ionotropic subcircuits. Whereas the subcircuits can collectively signal predictive models of the world based on life-long learning, their differential scaling continuously adjusts these models to changing mechanical contexts based on sensory input on a fast time scale of a few 100 ms. The control theory of biomimetic robots demonstrates that this precision scaling is an effective and resource-efficient solution to adapt the activation of individual muscle groups during locomotion to changing conditions such as ground compliance and carried load. Although it is not unconceivable that spinal ionotropic circuitry could achieve scaling by itself, neurophysiological findings emphasize that this is a unique functionality of metabotropic effects since recent recordings in sensorimotor circuitry conflict with mechanisms proposed for ionotropic scaling in other CNS areas. We substantiate that precision scaling of ionotropic subcircuits is a main functional principle for many monoaminergic projections throughout the CNS, implying that the monoaminergic circuitry forms a network within the network composed of the ionotropic circuitry. Thereby, we provide an early-level interpretation of the mechanisms of psychopharmacological drugs that interfere with the monoaminergic systems.

AB - Monoamines are presumed to be diffuse metabotropic neuromodulators of the topographically and temporally precise ionotropic circuitry which dominates CNS functions. Their malfunction is strongly implicated in motor and cognitive disorders, but their function in behavioral and cognitive processing is scarcely understood. In this paper, the principles of such a monoaminergic function are conceptualized for locomotor control. We find that the serotonergic system in the ventral spinal cord scales ionotropic signals and shows topographic order that agrees with differential gain modulation of ionotropic subcircuits. Whereas the subcircuits can collectively signal predictive models of the world based on life-long learning, their differential scaling continuously adjusts these models to changing mechanical contexts based on sensory input on a fast time scale of a few 100 ms. The control theory of biomimetic robots demonstrates that this precision scaling is an effective and resource-efficient solution to adapt the activation of individual muscle groups during locomotion to changing conditions such as ground compliance and carried load. Although it is not unconceivable that spinal ionotropic circuitry could achieve scaling by itself, neurophysiological findings emphasize that this is a unique functionality of metabotropic effects since recent recordings in sensorimotor circuitry conflict with mechanisms proposed for ionotropic scaling in other CNS areas. We substantiate that precision scaling of ionotropic subcircuits is a main functional principle for many monoaminergic projections throughout the CNS, implying that the monoaminergic circuitry forms a network within the network composed of the ionotropic circuitry. Thereby, we provide an early-level interpretation of the mechanisms of psychopharmacological drugs that interfere with the monoaminergic systems.

KW - Monoamine neurotransmitter disorders

KW - Motor control

KW - Motor learning

KW - Neuromodulation

KW - Principal component analysis

KW - Raphe nuclei

KW - Serotonin

KW - Spinal cord

U2 - 10.3389/fncel.2018.00506

DO - 10.3389/fncel.2018.00506

M3 - Article

VL - 12

JO - Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience

JF - Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience

SN - 1662-5102

M1 - 506

ER -