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Spinal Hb9::Cre-derived excitatory interneurons contribute to rhythm generation in the mouse

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  • Vanessa Caldeira
  • Kimberly J. Dougherty
  • Lotta Borgius
  • Kiehn, Ole

Rhythm generating neurons are thought to be ipsilaterally-projecting excitatory neurons in the thoracolumbar mammalian spinal cord. Recently, a subset of Shox2 interneurons (Shox2 non-V2a INs) was found to fulfill these criteria and make up a fraction of the rhythm-generating population. Here we use Hb9::Cre mice to genetically manipulate Hb9::Cre-derived excitatory interneurons (INs) in order to determine the role of these INs in rhythm generation. We demonstrate that this line captures a consistent population of spinal INs which is mixed with respect to neurotransmitter phenotype and progenitor domain, but does not overlap with the Shox2 non-V2a population. We also show that Hb9::Cre-derived INs include the comparatively small medial population of INs which continues to express Hb9 postnatally. When excitatory neurotransmission is selectively blocked by deleting Vglut2 from Hb9::Cre-derived INs, there is no difference in left-right and/or flexor-extensor phasing between these cords and controls, suggesting that excitatory Hb9::Cre-derived INs do not affect pattern generation. In contrast, the frequencies of locomotor activity are significantly lower in cords from Hb9::Cre-Vglut2 δ/δ mice than in cords from controls. Collectively, our findings indicate that excitatory Hb9::Cre-derived INs constitute a distinct population of neurons that participates in the rhythm generating kernel for spinal locomotion.

OriginalsprogEngelsk
Artikelnummer41369
TidsskriftScientific Reports
Vol/bind7
Antal sider12
ISSN2045-2322
DOI
StatusUdgivet - 27 jan. 2017
Eksternt udgivetJa

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