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Modeling fall propensity in Parkinson's disease: deficits in the attentional control of complex movements in rats with cortical-cholinergic and striatal-dopaminergic deafferentation.
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J Neurosci 2013 Oct; 33(42):16522-39
Authors: Aaron Kucinski, Giovanna Paolone, Marc Bradshaw, Roger L Albin, Martin Sarter
Department of Psychology, Neurology Service and Geriatric Research, Education and Clinical Center, Veterans Administration Ann Arbor Healthcare System, Department of Neurology, and Neuroscience Program, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109.
Cognitive symptoms, complex movement deficits, and increased propensity for falls are interrelated and levodopa-unresponsive symptoms in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). We developed a test system for the assessment of fall propensity in rats and tested the hypothesis that interactions between loss of cortical cholinergic and striatal dopaminergic afferents increase fall propensity. Rats were trained to traverse stationary and rotating rods, placed horizontally or at inclines, and while exposed to distractors. Rats also performed an operant Sustained Attention Task (SAT). Partial cortical cholinergic and/or caudate dopaminergic deafferentation were produced by bilateral infusions of 192 IgG-saporin (SAP) into the basal forebrain and/or 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) into the caudate nucleus, respectively, modeling the lesions seen in early PD. Rats with dual cholinergic-dopaminergic lesions (DL) fell more frequently than SAP or 6-OHDA rats. Falls in DL rats were associated with incomplete rebalancing after slips and low traversal speed. Ladder rung walking and pasta handling performance did not indicate sensorimotor deficits. SAT performance was impaired in DL and SAP rats; however, SAT performance and falls were correlated only in DL rats. Furthermore, in DL rats, but not in rats with only dopaminergic lesions, the placement and size of dopaminergic lesion correlated significantly with fall rates. The results support the hypothesis that after dual cholinergic-dopaminergic lesions, attentional resources can no longer be recruited to compensate for diminished striatal control of complex movement, thereby "unmasking" impaired striatal control of complex movements and yielding falls.
PMID: 24133257 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]