Collaboration between the teams of V. Deroche (OptoPath) and P. Faure (ESPCI, Paris)
Optogenetic experiment has been used to bidirectionally manipulate the VTA-NAc and VTA-Amg pathways to dissociate their contributions to anxiety-like behavior after nicotine injections. They have been shown that the inhibition of VTA-Amg DA neurons mediates anxiety-like behavior, while their activation prevents the anxiogenic effects of nicotine.
Highlights of the paper:
- Nicotine injection activates or inhibits distinct VTA dopaminergic subpopulations
- NAc-projecting neurons are excited by nicotine, and their activation is reinforcing
- Amygdala-projecting neurons are inhibited by nicotine, and their silencing is anxiogenic
- Nicotine-mediated anxiety is prevented by activating VTA-amygdala DA neurons
Find out more, here!