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Multi-neuronal activity in mouse striatum recorded chronically during T-maze learning

Multi-neuronal activity in mouse striatum recorded chronically during T-maze learning

Society for Neuroscience Abstracts 26(1-2): Abstract No -254 13

We previously reported a reorganization of task-related unit activity in the rat sensorimotor striatum during T-maze procedural learning (Jog et al, 1999, Science, 286:1745-49). Here, we have modified the recording and behavioral procedures for comparable studies with mice. To achieve chronic multi-neuronal recording in freely moving, normally behaving mice, we developed a light-weight (2.2 g) implantable headstage assembly consisting of two independently mobile microdrives, each holding a tetrode. During recording sessions, an 8-channel pre-amplifier (1.5 g) was attached to a miniature connector on the headstage. The movements of mice in a T-maze were recorded by a video tracker, and distinctive task events (locomotion onset, cue onset, turning, goal reaching) were defined. Mice were trained in the T-maze on either a spontaneous alternation task or a conditional turning task with tactile cues (rough or smooth maze surface). The mice acquired these tasks on average in 3 and 4 40-trial sessions, respectively. We recorded unit activity (2-5 units per session) in the dorsolateral striatum of 3 mice well trained on the conditional turning task. Task-related single-unit discharges occurred predominantly in relation to trial start and goal reaching, activity profiles resembling those found in rats performing a tone-cued turning task after learning. These results demonstrate the feasibility of a powerful, multi-neuronal chronic recording approach to analyzing striatal activity in mice without disturbing their normal behavior. The application of these methods to genetically engineered mice holds promise.

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