15 Pontine serotonergic neurons Loss of 5-HT-producing nMR neurons leads to corresponding serotonergic denervation throughout the neuraxis,
including cerebral cortex, basal ganglia, brain stem, and spinal cord.48 Severity of neuron loss in nMR has been linked to the occurrence of clinical depression in PD.15 Depletion of these neurons may also contribute, along with characteristic Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical losses of LC and SNc neurons, to the remarkably strong association between PD and REM (rapid eye movement) sleep behavior disorder (RBD).52-54 In some PD patients, development of RBD symptomatology may precede the onset parkinsonism by several years.55 Pontine cholinergic neurons Selective Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical loss of cholinergic neurons in
the pedunculopontine nucleus (PPN) is another characteristic of PD pathology.56,57 PPN contains two populations of neurons, cholinergic neurons in pars compacta (PPNc) and glutamatcrgic neurons in pars dissipatus (PPNd).58,59 PPNd neurons send glutamatergic projections to globus pallidus pars interna (GPi)/substantia nigra pars reticulata (SNr), SNc, and subthalamic nucleus (STN). The cholinergic neurons project to thalamus and to GPi/SNr. PPN Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical is somatotopically organized in primates, receiving corticotegmental inputs from motor cortex and from multiple nonprimary cortical motor fields that converge in topographic fashion to represent each body part.60 Despite this somatotopical segregation, there is compelling anatomical evidence that functionally segregated GPi outflow from motor, associative, and limbic territories overlaps within PPN to provide functionally integrated input Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical to the target neurons, which are limited to the noncholinergic projection neurons of
PPN.61 The cholinergic neurons of PPN and laterodorsal tegmental nuclei promote REM sleep with muscular atonia Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical through excitatory modulation of the REM sleep induction region within the medial pontine reticular formation.62 Both PPN and the laterodorsal tegmental nuclei receive converging monoaminergic inputs from nMR (5-HT), LC (NA), and SNc (DA) neurons, and all of these neuromodulatory inputs are effectively selleck screening library inhibitory due to the particular types of slow postsynaptic receptor they engage (5-HT1A, β, and d2 receptor types, respectively).62 Loss of these combined sources of inhibitory modulation of REM however sleep induction might explain the increased frequency of RBD in patients with PD if RBD resulted simply from overactivity of the REM sleep induction center. However, RBD involves not only the inappropriate induction of REM sleep activity, but the loss of REM-associated muscular atonia as well.63 Recent experimental studies suggest that basal ganglia sources of GABAergic (GABA, γ-aminobutyric acid) input to PPN may also be important to the normal control of REM sleep with atonia.