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CNI Seminar: Minghong Ma

Tuesday, March 20, 2018 - 11:30am

Barchi Library (140 John Morgan Building)

Minghong Ma
Department of Neuroscience
University of Pennsylvania

What does the nose tell the brain?

Respiration and airflow through the nasal cavity are known to be correlated with rhythmic neural activity in the central nervous system. Here we show in rodents that during conditioned fear-induced freezing behavior, mice breathe at a steady rate (~ 4 Hz), which is correlated with a predominant 4-Hz oscillation in the prelimbic prefrontal cortex (plPFC), a structure critical for expression of conditioned fear behaviors. We demonstrate anatomical and functional connections between the olfactory pathway and plPFC via circuit tracing and optogenetics. Disruption of olfactory inputs significantly reduces the 4-Hz oscillation in the plPFC, but leads to prolonged freezing periods. Our results indicate that olfactory inputs can modulate rhythmic activity in plPFC and freezing behavior.

A pizza lunch will be served.