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Neural activity during a simple reaching task in macaques is counter to gating and rebound in basal ganglia-thalamic communication

Citation

Schwab, Bettina et al. (2020), Neural activity during a simple reaching task in macaques is counter to gating and rebound in basal ganglia-thalamic communication, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.0cfxpnvxm

Abstract

Task-related activity in the ventral thalamus, a major target of basal ganglia output, is often assumed to be permitted or triggered by changes in basal ganglia activity through gating- or rebound-like mechanisms. To test those hypotheses, we sampled single-unit activity from connected basal ganglia output and thalamic nuclei (globus pallidus-internus, GPi, and ventrolateral-anterior nucleus, VLa) in monkeys performing a reaching task. Rate increases were the most common peri-movement change in both nuclei. Moreover, peri-movement changes generally began earlier in VLa than in GPi. Simultaneously-recorded GPi-VLa pairs rarely showed short-timescale spike-to-spike correlations or slow across-trials covariations and both were equally positive and negative. Finally, spontaneous GPi bursts and pauses were both followed by small, slow reductions in VLa rate. These results appear incompatible with standard gating and rebound models. Still, gating or rebound may be possible in other physiological situations: Simulations show how GPi-VLa communication can scale with GPi synchrony and GPi-to-VLa convergence, illuminating how synchrony of basal ganglia output during motor learning or in pathological conditions may render this pathway effective. Thus, in the healthy state, basal ganglia-thalamic communication during learned movement is more subtle than expected, with changes in firing rates possibly being dominated by a common external source.

Methods

This dataset includes unit data from the internal globus pallidus (GPi) and ventrolateral thalamus (VLa) in behaving macaque. Data was processed and analyzed to test for the gating and rebound hypothesis.

Usage Notes

Code and data can be used to plot Fig. 2-6 of the manuscript, and Supporting Information Fig. S2-S14:

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Funding

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, Award: S01NS113817

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, Award: R01NS091853

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, Award: R01NS070865

National Science Foundation, Award: DMS1516288

National Science Foundation, Award: DMS1724240

Center for Neuroscience Research in Non-human primates, Award: 1P30NS076405-01A1

National Science Foundation, Award: DMS-1654268

Neuronex*, Award: DBI-1707400

Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research*, Award: 613.009.012

Center for Neuroscience Research in Non-human primates, Award: 1P30NS076405-01A1

Neuronex, Award: DBI-1707400

Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research, Award: 613.009.012