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Habituation mechanisms and their impact on cognitive function

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889194629 Year: Pages: 110 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-462-9 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Neurology --- Science (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2016-03-10 08:14:32
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Habituation describes the progressive decrease of the amplitude or frequency of a motor response to repeated sensory stimulation that is not caused by sensory receptor adaptation or motor fatigue. Habituation can occur in different time scales: habituation within a testing session has been termed short-term habituation, whereas habituation across testing sessions has been termed long-term habituation. Generally, the more spaced the stimuli for inducing habituation are presented (i.e. the slower habituation is induced), the longer it seems to take to recover the behavioural response to its initial magnitude. Habituation is opposed by behavioural sensitization, which is thought to be an independent mechanism that leads to an increased behavioural response, especially if the sensory stimulus is annoying or aversive. Habituation provides an important mechanism for filtering sensory information, as it allows filtering out irrelevant stimuli and thereby focussing on important stimuli, a prerequisite for many cognitive tasks. The importance is demonstrated in mental disorders that are associated with disruptions in habituation, e.g. schizophrenia and autism spectrum disorders. The inability to filter out irrelevant information in patients with these disorders strongly correlates with disruptions in higher cognitive functions, such as in different types of memory and attention. Habituation is also considered to be the most basic form of non-associative implicit learning, and it can be observed throughout the animal kingdom. Based on the importance of habituation for cognitive function and therefore for the survival of an animal, it is assumed that habituation mechanisms are highly conserved across species. On the other hand, there is emerging evidence for a multitude of homo- and heterosynaptic mechanisms underlying habituation, depending on the modality of sensory stimulation, the level of sensory information processing where habituation occurs, and the temporal composition of sensory stimulation. Eric Kandel used the sea hare Aplysia in order to study habituation mechanisms of the gill withdrawal reflex; however, the molecular mechanisms remain largely elusive to date. A multitude of different organisms, behaviours, and experimental approaches have been used since in order to study habituation, but still surprisingly little is known about the underlying mechanisms. New insights also come from an unexpected side: in the recent past, groups that have been studying molecular mechanisms underlying short- and long-term synaptic plasticity phenomenons in different parts of the rodent brain are starting to link these plasticity processes to behavioural habituation. The scope of this Frontier Research Topic is to give an overview over the concept of habituation, different animal and behavioural models used for studying habituation mechanisms, as well as the different synaptic and molecular processes suggested to play a role in behavioural habituation through Original Research Articles, Methods, Hypothesis & Theory Articles, and Reviews.

The Physiological Functions of the Amyloid Precursor Protein Gene Family

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889453559 Year: Pages: 275 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88945-355-9 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Science (General) --- Neurology
Added to DOAB on : 2018-02-27 16:16:45
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The amyloid precursor protein APP plays a key role in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), as proteolytical cleavage of APP gives rise to the Aß peptide which is deposited in the brains of Alzheimer patients. Despite this, our knowledge of the normal cell biological and physiological functions of APP and the closely related APLPs is limited. This may have hampered our understanding of AD, since evidence has accumulated that not only the production of the Aß peptide but also the loss of APP-mediated functions may contribute to AD pathogenesis. Thus, it appears timely and highly relevant to elucidate the functions of the APP gene family from the molecular level to their role in the intact organism, i.e. in the context of nervous system development, synapse formation and adult synapse function, as well as neural homeostasis and aging. Why is our understanding of the APP functions so limited? APP and the APLPs are multifunctional proteins that undergo complex proteolytical processing. They give rise to an almost bewildering array of different fragments that may each subserve specific functions. While Aß is aggregation prone and neurotoxic, the large secreted ectodomain APPsa - produced in the non-amyloidogenic a-secretase pathway - has been shown to be neurotrophic, neuroprotective and relevant for synaptic plasticity, learning and memory. Recently, novel APP cleavage pathways and enzymes have been discovered that have gained much attention not only with respect to AD but also regarding their role in normal brain physiology. In addition to the various cleavage products, there is also solid evidence that APP family proteins mediate important functions as transmembrane cell surface molecules, most notably in synaptic adhesion and cell surface signaling. Elucidating in more detail the molecular mechanisms underlying these divers functions thus calls for an interdisciplinary approach ranging from the structural level to the analysis in model organisms. Thus, in this research topic of Frontiers we compile reviews and original studies, covering our current knowledge of the physiological functions of this intriguing and medically important protein family.

Biogenic Amines and Neuromodulation of Animal Behavior, 2nd Edition

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889455645 Year: Pages: 238 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88945-564-5 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Neurology --- Science (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2019-01-23 14:53:43
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Since Erspamer and Boretti, 1951 first described the biogenic amine octopamine in the octopus salivary gland as a molecule with “adrenaline-like” action, decades of extensive studies demonstrated the important role octopamine and its precursor tyramine play in invertebrate physiology and behavior. This book contains the latest original research papers on tyramine/octopamine and their receptors in different neuronal and non-neuronal circuits of insects.

Additonally, this book elucidates in detail the latest research on the function of other biogenic amines and their receptors, such as dopamine and serotonin in insects and mice. The reviews in this book summarize the most recent research on the role of biogenic amines in insect antennae, synaptic development, and behavioral modulation by spontaneous dopamine release in Drosophila. Finally, one perspective paper discusses the evolution of social behavior and biogenic amines.

We recommend this book for all scholars interested in the latest advanced research on the role of biogenic amines in animal behavior.

ITS dedicates the topic to her teacher, Plotnikova Svetlana Ivanovna (1922-2013).
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