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Journal Article

Midline thalamic neurons are differentially engaged during hippocampus network oscillations

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Lara-Vásquez, A., Espinosa, N., Durán, E., Stockle, M., & Fuentealba, P. (2016). Midline thalamic neurons are differentially engaged during hippocampus network oscillations. Scientific Reports, 6: 29807, pp. 1-16. doi:10.1038/srep29807.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0008-2DDA-1
The midline thalamus is reciprocally connected with the medial temporal lobe, where neural circuitry essential for spatial navigation and memory formation resides. Yet, little information is available on the dynamic relationship between activity patterns in the midline thalamus and medial temporal lobe. Here, we report on the functional heterogeneity of anatomically-identified thalamic neurons and the differential modulation of their activity with respect to dorsal hippocampal rhythms in the anesthetized mouse. Midline thalamic neurons expressing the calcium-binding protein calretinin, irrespective of their selective co-expression of calbindin, discharged at overall low levels, did not increase their activity during hippocampal theta oscillations, and their firing rates were inhibited during hippocampal sharp wave-ripples. Conversely, thalamic neurons lacking calretinin discharged at higher rates, increased their activity during hippocampal theta waves, but remained unaffected during sharp wave-ripples. Our results indicate that the midline thalamic system comprises at least two different classes of thalamic projection neuron, which can be partly defined by their differential engagement by hippocampal pathways during specific network oscillations that accompany distinct behavioral contexts. Thus, different midline thalamic neuronal populations might be selectively recruited to support distinct stages of memory processing, consistent with the thalamus being pivotal in the dialogue of cortical circuits.