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Calcium Imaging Reveals Glial Involvement In Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation-induced Plasticity In Mouse Brain

H. Monai, M. Ohkura, M. Tanaka, Yuki Oe, A. Konno, H. Hirai, K. Mikoshiba, S. Itohara, J. Nakai, Youichi Iwai, H. Hirase
Published 2016 · Chemistry, Medicine

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Transcranical direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a treatment known to ameliorate various neurological conditions and enhance memory and cognition in humans. tDCS has gained traction for its potential therapeutic value; however, little is known about its mechanism of action. Using a transgenic mouse expressing G-CaMP7 in astrocytes and a subpopulation of excitatory neurons, we find that tDCS induces large-amplitude astrocytic Ca2+ surges across the entire cortex with no obvious changes in the local field potential. Moreover, sensory evoked cortical responses are enhanced after tDCS. These enhancements are dependent on the alpha-1 adrenergic receptor and are not observed in IP3R2 (inositol trisphosphate receptor type 2) knockout mice, in which astrocytic Ca2+ surges are absent. Together, we propose that tDCS changes the metaplasticity of the cortex through astrocytic Ca2+/IP3 signalling.
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How to cite this article: Monai, H. et al. Calcium imaging reveals glial involvement in transcranial direct current stimulation-induced plasticity in mouse brain
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