Stimulation of GABAergic neurons of the lateral septum and its effect on movement speed

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2016-06-06

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Yin, Henry H

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Abstract

The lateral septum is associated with the regulation of innate behavior, motivation, and locomotion. Its complex interconnections with cognitive and affective regions such as the hippocampus, hypothalamus, and medial septum have made it an attractive region for studying how motivation regulates behavior in context-specific settings. This GABAergic brain region’s main output is the lateral hypothalamus, which provides downstream signaling of motor commands. Even though stimulation of lateral septum projections to the hypothalamus have shown to decrease running speed in free behaving mice, characterizing movement kinematics due to LS activation has not been studied. GABAergic medium spiny neurons of the lateral septum were selectively activated through the use of optogenetic techniques in transgenic mice. Photostimulation of the lateral septum at theta frequencies caused a non-significant decrease in head and back speed. 3D motion analysis of body movement under photostimulation was quantified, revealing a slow, linear decrease of body speed as photostimulation progressed. These results support the role of lateral septum activation in movement regulation and shed light on the specific manner in which stimulation of the LS gradually decreases movement speed.

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Stackmann, Michelle (2016). Stimulation of GABAergic neurons of the lateral septum and its effect on movement speed. Honors thesis, Duke University. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/12375.

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