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PubMed | National Institute for Physiological science NIPS, Osaka City University, Keio University, Tokyo Gakugei University and 3 more.
Type: | Journal: Neuropsychologia | Year: 2016

A hearers perception of an utterance as sarcastic depends on integration of the heard statement, the discourse context, and the prosody of the utterance, as well as evaluation of the incongruity among these aspects. The effect of prosody in sarcasm comprehension is evident in everyday conversation, but little is known about its underlying mechanism or neural substrates. To elucidate the neural underpinnings of sarcasm comprehension in the auditory modality, we conducted a functional MRI experiment with 21 adult participants. The participants were provided with a short vignette in which a child had done either a good or bad deed, about which a parent made a positive comment. The participants were required to judge the degree of the sarcasm in the parents positive comment (praise), which was accompanied by either positive or negative affective prosody. The behavioral data revealed that an incongruent combination of utterance and the context (i.e., the parents positive comment on a bad deed by the child) induced perception of sarcasm. There was a significant interaction between context and prosody: sarcasm perception was enhanced when positive prosody was used in the context of a bad deed or, vice versa, when negative prosody was used in the context of a good deed. The corresponding interaction effect was observed in the rostro-ventral portion of the left inferior frontal gyrus corresponding to Brodmanns Area (BA) 47. Negative prosody incongruent with a positive utterance (praise) activated the bilateral insula extending to the right inferior frontal gyrus, anterior cingulate cortex, and brainstem. Our findings provide evidence that the left inferior frontal gyrus, particularly BA 47, is involved in integration of discourse context and utterance with affective prosody in the comprehension of sarcasm.

PubMed | Japan Science and Technology Agency, National Institute for Physiological science NIPS, Rangsit University, Burapha University and Silpakorn University
Type: | Journal: Neuroscience research | Year: 2014

We investigated ascending somatosensory pathways in neonatally hemidecorticated rats. Injection of an anterograde tracer, biotinylated dextran amine (BDA), into the contralesional dorsal root ganglions revealed ipsilateral projections to the dorsal column nuclei (DCN) in hemidecorticated rats as well as in normal rats. Injection of BDA into the DCN on the same side revealed that while most axons projected to the contralateral thalamus, some axons were detected in the ipsilateral thalamus in hemidecorticated rats while such projections were rarely detected in normal rats. The results suggest that aberrant ipsilateral projections of DCN neurons contralateral to the lesion developed after the hemidecortication.

Satake S.,National Institute for Physiological science NIPS | Satake S.,Graduate University for Advanced Studies | Inoue T.,National Institute for Physiological science NIPS | Inoue T.,Graduate University for Advanced Studies | And 3 more authors.
Journal of Physiology | Year: 2012

A simple form of presynaptic plasticity, paired-pulse facilitation (PPF), has been explained as a transient increase in the probability of vesicular release. Using the whole-cell patch-clamp technique to record synaptic activity in rat cerebellar slices, we found different forms of presynaptically originated short-term plasticity during glutamatergic excitatory neurotransmission from granule cells (GCs) to molecular-layer interneurones (INs). Paired-pulse activation of GC axons at short intervals (30-100 ms) elicited not only a facilitation in the peak amplitude (PPFamp), but also a prolongation in the decay-time constant (PPPdecay) of the EPSCs recorded from INs. The results of pharmacological tests and kinetics analyses suggest that the mechanisms underlying the respective types of short-term plasticity were different. PPFamp was elicited by a transient increase in the number of released vesicles. On the other hand, PPPdecay was caused not only by delayed release as has been reported but also by extrasynaptic spillover of the GC transmitter and the subsequent intersynaptic pooling. Both PPFamp and PPPdecay closely rely on repetitive-activation-induced multivesicular release. Using a dynamic clamp technique, we further examined the physiological significance of different presynaptic plasticity, and found that PPFamp and PPPdecay can differentially encode and process neuronal information by influencing the total synaptic charge transferred to postsynaptic INs to reflect activation frequency of the presynaptic GCs. © 2012 The Authors. The Journal of Physiology © 2012 The Physiological Society.

Umeda T.,National Institute for Physiological science NIPS | Seki K.,National Institute for Physiological science NIPS | Seki K.,National Institute of Neuroscience | Seki K.,Japan Science and Technology Agency | And 7 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2012

Various peripheral receptors provide information concerning position and movement to the central nervous system to achieve complex and dexterous movements of forelimbs in primates. The response properties of single afferent receptors to movements at a single joint have been examined in detail, but the population coding of peripheral afferents remains poorly defined. In this study, we obtained multichannel recordings from dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons in cervical segments of monkeys. We applied the sparse linear regression (SLiR) algorithm to the recordings, which selects useful input signals to reconstruct movement kinematics. Multichannel recordings of peripheral afferents were performed by inserting multi-electrode arrays into the DRGs of lower cervical segments in two anesthetized monkeys. A total of 112 and 92 units were responsive to the passive joint movements or the skin stimulation with a painting brush in Monkey 1 and Monkey 2, respectively. Using the SLiR algorithm, we reconstructed the temporal changes of joint angle, angular velocity, and acceleration at the elbow, wrist, and finger joints from temporal firing patterns of the DRG neurons. By automatically selecting a subset of recorded units, the SLiR achieved superior generalization performance compared with a regularized linear regression algorithm. The SLiR selected not only putative muscle units that were responsive to only the passive movements, but also a number of putative cutaneous units responsive to the skin stimulation. These results suggested that an ensemble of peripheral primary afferents that contains both putative muscle and cutaneous units encode forelimb joint kinematics of non-human primates. © 2012 Umeda et al.

Satake S.I.,National Institute for Physiological science NIPS | Satake S.I.,Graduate University for Advanced Studies | Inoue T.,Okayama University | Imoto K.,National Institute for Physiological science NIPS | Imoto K.,Graduate University for Advanced Studies
Cerebellum | Year: 2016

The number of synaptic vesicles released during fast release plays a major role in determining the strength of postsynaptic response. However, it remains unresolved how the number of vesicles released in response to action potentials is controlled at a single synapse. Recent findings suggest that the Cav2.1 subtype (P/Q-type) of voltage-gated calcium channels is responsible for inducing presynaptic multivesicular release (MVR) at rat cerebellar glutamatergic synapses from granule cells to molecular layer interneurons. The topographical distance from Cav2.1 channels to exocytotic Ca2+ sensors is a critical determinant of MVR. In physiological trains of presynaptic neurons, MVR significantly impacts the excitability of postsynaptic neurons, not only by increasing peak amplitude but also by prolonging decay time of the postsynaptic currents. Therefore, MVR contributes additional complexity to neural encoding and processing in the cerebellar cortex. © 2015, Springer Science+Business Media New York.

PubMed | National Institute for Physiological science NIPS, Kobe University, Osaka City University, Kyushu University and 4 more.
Type: | Journal: NeuroImage | Year: 2015

During a dyadic social interaction, two individuals can share visual attention through gaze, directed to each other (mutual gaze) or to a third person or an object (joint attention). Shared attention is fundamental to dyadic face-to-face interaction, but how attention is shared, retained, and neutrally represented in a pair-specific manner has not been well studied. Here, we conducted a two-day hyperscanning functional magnetic resonance imaging study in which pairs of participants performed a real-time mutual gaze task followed by a joint attention task on the first day, and mutual gaze tasks several days later. The joint attention task enhanced eye-blink synchronization, which is believed to be a behavioral index of shared attention. When the same participant pairs underwent mutual gaze without joint attention on the second day, enhanced eye-blink synchronization persisted, and this was positively correlated with inter-individual neural synchronization within the right inferior frontal gyrus. Neural synchronization was also positively correlated with enhanced eye-blink synchronization during the previous joint attention task session. Consistent with the Hebbian association hypothesis, the right inferior frontal gyrus had been activated both by initiating and responding to joint attention. These results indicate that shared attention is represented and retained by pair-specific neural synchronization that cannot be reduced to the individual level.

Inagaki-Ohara K.,University of Ryukyus | Inagaki-Ohara K.,National Institute for Physiological science NIPS | Inagaki-Ohara K.,Research Center for Hepatitis and Immunology | Mayuzumi H.,University of Ryukyus | And 7 more authors.
Oncogene | Year: 2014

Leptin acts on its receptor (ObR) in the hypothalamus to inhibit food intake and energy expenditure. Leptin and ObR are also expressed in the gastrointestinal tract; however, the physiological significance of leptin signaling in the gut remains uncertain. Suppressor of cytokine signaling 3 (SOCS3) is a key negative feedback regulator of ObR-mediated signaling in the hypothalamus. We now show that gastrointestinal epithelial cell-specific SOCS3 conditional knockout (T3b-SOCS3 cKO) mice developed gastric tumors by enhancing leptin production and the ObRb/signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) signaling pathway. All T3b-SOCS3 cKO mice developed tumors in the stomach but not in the bowels by 2 months of age, even though the SOCS3 deletion occurred in both the epithelium of stomach and bowels. The tumors developed in the absence of the inflammatory response and all cKO mice died within 6 months. These tumors displayed pathology and molecular alterations, such as an increase in MUC2 (Mucin 2, oligomeric mucus/gel-forming) and TFF3 (trefoil factor 3), resembling human intestinal-type gastric tumors. Administration of antileptin antibody to T3b-SOCS3 cKO mice reduced hyperplasia of gastric mucosa, which is the step of the initiation of gastric tumor. These data suggest that SOCS3 is an antigastric tumor gene that suppresses leptin overexpression and ObRb/STAT3 hyperactivation, supporting the hypothesis that the leptin/ObRb/STAT3 axis accelerates tumorigenesis and that it may represent a new therapeutic target for the treatment of gastric cancer. © 2014 Macmillan Publishers Limited.

Umeda T.,National Institute for Physiological science NIPS | Umeda T.,Yokohama City University | Funakoshi K.,Yokohama City University
Neuroscience Research | Year: 2014

It is well recognized that a juvenile brain is more plastic than an adult brain and often undergoes better functional recovery following cortical injury. Infants treated with hemispherectomy to cure intractable epilepsy often exhibit restored normal motor function in the extremities contralateral to the lesion. Neuronal mechanisms of functional recovery after such a large cortical damage at a young age have been studied using animals with a similar lesion, hemidecortication. In such animals, descending pathways from the undamaged sensorimotor cortex to the ipsilateral forelimb motoneurons are reorganized as restoring normal motor function of the forelimb contralateral to the injury. Similar aberrant pathways from the motor cortex to the ipsilateral motoneurons are also generated following suppression of cortical activity in the other hemisphere, suggesting the development of contralateral connections in an activity-dependent manner in normal animals. Thus, formation of ipsilateral descending pathways following neonatal hemidecortication might be due to a loss of balance in cortical activity between the two hemispheres. Studies using animal models of neonatal cortical injury can reveal mechanisms of neural development and may help to establish therapeutic strategies to facilitate recovery from human juvenile cortical injury. © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd and the Japan Neuroscience Society.

PubMed | Japan National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, Tokyo Metroplitan University, National Institute for Physiological science NIPS, Tsukuba International University and Tokyo Metropolitan Geriatric Hospital & Institute of Gerontology
Type: | Journal: Brain research | Year: 2016

Secreted phosphoprotein 1 (SPP1, also known as osteopontin) is expressed in large pyramidal neurons in the primary motor cortex (M1) of certain primate species, including macaque monkeys, but not of rodents. Based on this, we suggested that SPP1 expression may reflect the functional or structural specialization of highly developed corticospinal systems. In the present study, we further characterized SPP1 in the human central nervous system by investigating its expression in the primary somatosensory cortex (S1) and spinal cord, in addition to M1. Although a small number of SPP1-positive pyramidal neurons were observed in S1, the number was smaller than that in M1. In the cervical segment of the spinal cord, SPP1 was principally expressed in choline acetyltransferase-positive motor neurons in lamina IX. We also examined SPP1 expression in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a disease characterized by the degeneration of motor neurons. When SPP1 expression was compared in neurons of the same size range, expression in both M1 and the spinal cord of ALS patients was lower than that of subjects without ALS. SPP1 expression was especially reduced in surviving large neurons in both M1 and the spinal cord of ALS patients. The results further support the concept that SPP1 has a role in the specialization of motor projection neurons and suggest that its reduced expression may be implicated in the neurodegeneration seen in ALS.

PubMed | Yakult Central Institute for Microbiological Research, University of Miyazaki, National Institute for Physiological science NIPS and Prefectural University of Hiroshima
Type: | Journal: Nutrition & metabolism | Year: 2016

Obesity increases the risk for malignancies in various tissues including the stomach. Atrophic gastritis with precancerous lesions is an obesity-associated disease; however, the mechanisms that underlie the development of obesity-associated atrophic gastritis are unknown. Leptin is a hormone derived from stomach as well as adipose tissue and gastric leptin is involved in the development of gastric cancer. The aim of the current study is to investigate the involvement of leptin receptor signaling in the development of atrophic gastritis during diet-induced obesity.Male C57BL/6, ob/ob and db/db mice were fed a high-fat diet (HFD) or a control diet (CD) from 1week to 5months. Pathological changes of the gastric mucosa and the expression of molecules associated with atrophic gastritis were evaluated in these mice.HFD feeding induced gastric mucosal hyperplasia with increased gastric leptin expression. Mucosal hyperplasia was accompanied by a higher frequency of Ki67-positive proliferating cells and atrophy of the gastric glands in the presence of inflammation, which increased following HFD feeding. Activation of ObR signaling-associated molecules such as ObR, STAT3, Akt, and ERK was detected in the gastric mucosa of mice fed the HFD for 1week. The morphological alterations associated with gastric mucosal atrophy and the expression of Muc2 and Cdx2 resemble those associated with human intestinal metaplasia. In contrast to wild-type mice, leptin-deficient ob/ob mice and leptin receptor-mutated db/db mice did not show increased Cdx2 expression in response to HFD feeding.Together, these results suggest that activation of the leptin signaling pathway in the stomach is required to develop obesity-associated atrophic gastritis.

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