Reversible Inactivation of the Dorsolateral Prefrontal Cortex in Non- Human Primates via Designer Receptors Exclusively Activated by Designer Drugs Impairs a Spatial Memory Task

by Schnebelen, Wendy, M.S., ICAHN SCHOOL OF MEDICINE AT MOUNT SINAI, 2015, 54 pages; 1587698


The dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) is critical for short-term memory. However, methods available to study this structure are often limited in their interpretations and irreversible. Lesion studies are difficult to interpret because of risks of compensation, and possible disruption of fibers of passage. A recent technique, designer receptors exclusively activated by designer drugs (DREADDs), reversibly activates or inactivates neuronal populations. Thus, many research questions addressable with the lesion approach could be done with DREADDs, with the added benefits of reversibility and within-subject comparisons. DREADDs are established in rodent studies, but remain unexplored in non-human primates (NHP). We start this next step by expressing DREADDs in the DLPFC of NHPs. DREADD effectiveness for NHP behavioral studies is tested via a spatial delayed response task sensitive to DLPFC manipulations. Initial positive results provide insight on how best to use this innovative tool for NHP research.

AdviserMark G. Baxter
Source TypeThesis
Publication Number1587698

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