• Info
  • Home
  • About
  • Editorial Board
  • Archive
  • Research Topics
  • View Some Authors
  • Review Guidelines
  • Subscribe to Alerts
  • Search
  • Article Type

    Publication Date

  • Author Info
  • Why Submit?
  • Fees
  • Article Types
  • Author Guidelines
  • Submission Checklist
  • Contact Editorial Office
  • Submit Manuscript
Start date should be earlier than end date. OK Please enter the date in dd/mm/yyyy format or use the calendar icon to the left of the date field.

Research Topic

Share 0
Like 0

Neural circuits underlying emotion and motivation: Insights from optogenetics and pharmacogenetics

Topic Editors:

Anton Ilango, National Institutes of Health (NIH), USA
Mary Kay Lobo, University of Maryland School of Medicine, USA

Deadline for abstract submission: 16 Aug 2013

Deadline for full article submission: 30 Sep 2013

Extended deadline for full article submission: 26 Jul 2014

Application of optogenetic and pharmacogenetic tools to study the neural circuits underlying emotional valence, feeding, arousal and motivated behaviors has provided crucial insights into brain function. Expression of light sensitive proteins into specific neurons and subsequent stimulation by light (optogenetics) to control neuronal activity or expression of designer receptors exclusively activated by designer drugs (DREADD) in specific neuronal populations with subsequent activation or suppression of neuronal activity by an otherwise inert ligand (pharmacogenetics) provides control over defined elements of neural circuits. These novel tools have provided a more in depth understanding into several questions about brain function. These include:
• Regulation of sleep-wake transition by the interaction of hypocretin neurons of lateral hypothalamus and nor adrenergic neurons of the locus coruleaus
• Regulation of feeding by AGRP and POMC neurons in arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus
• Place preference and positive reinforcement by activation of DA neuron of VTA
• Place aversion by activation of VTA GABA and lateral habenula neurons
• Opposing influences on reinforcement by activation of D1 and D2 expressing medium spiny neurons of dorsal striatum and nucleus accumbens
The list still grows...
From cell type specific manipulations to signaling properties in the cell (Dietz et al 2012) with unprecedented temporal resolution, these tools revolutionize the exploration of pathways/connectivity. Recent years also witnessed the extension of applying these tools from studying emotional valence and motivated behavior to reactivation of memory. c-fos based genetic approaches allowed us to integrate light sensitive opsins or DREADD receptor into specific neurons that are activated by certain learning events (for example fear) (Garner et al 2012; Liu et al 2012).
In this Research Topic, we welcome researchers to contribute original research articles, review articles, methods and commentary on topics utilizing optogenetic and pharmacogenetic tools to study the neural circuits underlying emotional valence, motivation, reinforcement and memory.
We believe the Research Topic will shine light on various questions we have about brain function by using novel optogenetic and pharmacogenetic tools and will hopefully inspire ongoing research to overcome the hurdles of using these tools to advance clinical applications.

Share 0
Like 0

About Frontiers Research Topics

img

Frontiers Research Topics

With their unique mixes of varied contributions from Original Research to Review Articles, Research Topics unify the most influential researchers, the latest key findings and historical advances in a hot research area! Find out more on how to host your own Frontiers Research Topic or contribute to one as an author.

© 2007 - 2014 Frontiers Media S.A. All Rights Reserved