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Regeneration of synapses in the olfactory pathway of locusts after antennal deafferentation A Neuroethology, sensory, neural, and behavioral physiology

Wasser, Hannah, Stern, Michael
Journal of comparative physiology 2017 v.203 no.10 pp. 867-877
animals, antennal lobe, electrophysiology, instars, locusts, mushroom bodies, nerve tissue, neurons, nymphs, odors, olfactory receptors, synapse, young adults
The olfactory pathway of the locust is capable of fast and precise regeneration on an anatomical level. Following deafferentation of the antenna either of young adult locusts, or of fifth instar nymphs, severed olfactory receptor neurons (ORNs) reinnervate the antennal lobe (AL) and arborize in AL microglomeruli. In the present study we tested whether these regenerated fibers establish functional synapses again. Intracellular recordings from AL projection neurons revealed that the first few odor stimulus evoked postsynaptic responses from regenerated ORNs from day 4–7 post crush on. On average, synaptic connections of regenerated afferents appeared faster in younger locusts operated as fifth instar nymphs than in adults. The proportions of response categories (excitatory vs. inhibitory) changed during regeneration, but were back to normal within 21 days. Odor-evoked oscillating extracellular local field potentials (LFP) were recorded in the mushroom body. These responses, absent after antennal nerve crush, reappeared, in a few animals as soon as 4 days post crush. Odor-induced oscillation patterns were restored within 7 days post crush. Both intra- and extracellular recordings indicate the capability of the locust olfactory system to re-establish synaptic contacts in the antennal lobe after antennal nerve lesion.