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Convergent cortical innervation of striatal projection neurons


Anatomical studies have led to the assertion that intratelencephalic and pyramidal tract cortical neurons innervate different striatal projection neurons. To test this hypothesis, we measured the responses of mouse striatal neurons to optogenetic activation of intratelencephalic and pyramidal tract axons. Contrary to expectation, direct and indirect pathway striatal spiny projection neurons responded to both intratelencephalic and pyramidal tract activation, arguing that these cortical networks innervate both striatal projection neurons.

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Figure 1: Intratelencephalic neurons equally innervated dSPNs and iSPNs.
Figure 2: Pyramidal tract neurons innervated both dSPNs and iSPNs, with stronger connections to dSPNs.

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We thank S. Ulrich, K. Saporito, Y. Chen and L. Fisher for animal husbandry and genotyping, as well as members of the Shepherd and Surmeier laboratories for helpful discussions. We thank H.S. Seung (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) for providing the virus. This work is supported by grants from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (T32NS041234 to G.J.K., R01NS034696 to D.J. S., R01NS061963 to G.M.G.S. and P30NS054850 to D.L.W.), the CHDI Foundation and the JPB Foundation.

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G.J.K. conducted the experiments, injections, data analysis and imaging. N.Y. performed injections and imaging. D.L.W. provided technical expertise with all aspects of the photoactivation system. I.R.W. provided rabies virus technical assistance. D.J.S. supervised the project. G.J.K., G.M.G.S., N.Y. and D.J.S. designed the experiments. G.J.K. and D.J.S. prepared the manuscript.

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Correspondence to D James Surmeier.

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The authors declare no competing financial interests.

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Kress, G., Yamawaki, N., Wokosin, D. et al. Convergent cortical innervation of striatal projection neurons. Nat Neurosci 16, 665–667 (2013).

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