Behaviour-dependent changes in acetylcholine release in normal and graft-reinnervated hippocampus: evidence for host regulation of grafted cholinergic neurons

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Abstract

Grafted neurons obtained from the fetal basal forebrain can provide a functional cholinergic reinnervation of the hippocampal formation in rats with a lesion of the intrinsic septal cholinergic afferents. In the present experiments graft-derived acetylcholine release in the hippocampus was studied by microdialysis in awake rats during different types of behaviours which are known to activate the innate septohippocampal cholinergic system and during different activity periods of the day-night cycle. Two types of basal forebrain grafts were studied: cell suspensions implanted into the hippocampus in rats with an aspirative lesion of the fimbria-fornix, and grafts of solid tissue implanted as a tissue bridge into the fimbria-fornix lesion cavity. Increased acetylcholine overflow was seen in both groups with grafts during sensory stimulation (by handling). The strongest response (50% increase in acetylcholine release) was seen in rats with solid basal forebrain grafts (equivalent to two-thirds of that seen in intact rats). Immobilization stress and motor activity (swimming) also resulted in increased, but more variable, acetylcholine release (+ 30%; about one-third of the normal response). None of these effects was seen in the control rats with fimbria-fornix lesion only. The two-fold difference in hippocampal acetylcholine release in normal animals between day and night was absent in both types of grafted rats. An acute knife-cut, transecting the connections between the solid basal forebrain graft and the host hippocampus, caused an immediate 75% reduction in acetylcholine release (similar to the effect of an acute fimbria-fornix transection in the normal rats) and the response to swimming was no longer evident. The results show that grafted cholinergic neurons can be functionally integrated into the host brain, allowing the grafted neurons to be activated in the correct behavioural contexts, although the changes in acetylcholine overflow were overall smaller and more variable than normal. The ability of the host to influence cholinergic graft activity, most probably mediated via activation of afferent host-graft connections, may contribute to the efficacy of basal forebrain grafts in the amelioration of behavioural impairments in animals with lesions of the forebrain cholinergic system.

Detaljer

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Forskningsområden

Ämnesklassifikation (UKÄ) – OBLIGATORISK

  • Neurovetenskaper

Nyckelord

Originalspråkengelska
Sidor (från-till)33-44
Antal sidor12
TidskriftNeuroscience
Volym49
Utgåva nummer1
StatusPublished - 1992 jul
PublikationskategoriForskning
Peer review utfördJa