Neuronal activity regulated pentraxin (Narp) is a secreted protein that regulates a-amino-3-hydroxyl-5-methyl-4-isoxazole-propionate receptors (AMPAR) aggregation and synaptogenesis. Mapping of Narp-positive neurons in brain has revealed it is prominently expressed in several limbic system projection pathways. Consistent with this localization pattern, Narp knockout mice show deficits in using the current value of a reinforcer to guide behavior, a critical function of the limbic system. To help assess whether this behavioral deficit is due to impairment of synaptogenesis during development or in modulating synaptic signaling in the mature brain, we have used a dominant negative Narp viral construct which blocks trafficking of endogenous Narp to axons. Focal injection of this viral construct into the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) of adult mice, a region containing Narp-positive projection neurons, blocked reinforcer devaluation. Thus, these results indicate that Narp released from mPFC neurons plays a key role in mediating synaptic changes underlying instrumental reinforcer devaluation.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
- Cognitive Neuroscience
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience