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Papers of the Week

Papers: 22 Jun 2024 - 28 Jun 2024

2024 Jun 25



Editor's Pick

Interplay between subthalamic nucleus and spinal cord controls parkinsonian nociceptive disorders.


Charles KA, Molpeceres Sierra E, Bouali-Benazzouz R, Tibar H, Oudaha K, Naudet F, Duveau A, Fossat P, Benazzouz A


Pain is a non-motor symptom that impairs quality of life in Parkinson’s patients. Pathological nociceptive hypersensitivity in patients could be due to changes in the processing of somatosensory information at the level of the basal ganglia, including the subthalamic nucleus (STN), but the underlying mechanisms are not yet defined. Here, we investigated the interaction between the STN and the dorsal horn of the spinal cord (DHSC), by first examining the nature of STN neurons that respond to peripheral nociceptive stimulation and the nature of their responses under normal and pathological conditions. Next, we studied the consequences of deep brain stimulation (DBS) of the STN on the electrical activity of DHSC neurons. Then, we investigated whether the therapeutic effect of STN-DBS would be mediated by the brainstem descending pathway involving the rostral ventromedial medulla (RVM). Finally, to better understand how the STN modulates allodynia, we used Designer Receptors Exclusively Activated by Designer Drugs (DREADDs) expressed in the STN.