Environmental enrichment leads to behavioral circadian shifts enhancing brain-wide functional connectivity between sensory cortices and eliciting increased hippocampal spiking

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Author(s)

  • Ziqi An
  • Rachit Kumar
  • Jiaming Liu
  • Ed X. Wu
  • Yanqiu Feng

Detail(s)

Original languageEnglish
Article number119016
Journal / PublicationNeuroImage
Volume252
Online published18 Feb 2022
Publication statusPublished - 15 May 2022

Link(s)

Abstract

Environmental enrichment induces widespread neuronal changes, but the initiation of the cascade is unknown. We ascertained the critical period of divergence between environmental enriched (EE) and standard environment (SE) mice using continuous infrared (IR) videography, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), and neuron level calcium imaging. Naïve adult male mice (n = 285, C57BL/6J, postnatal day 60) were divided into SE and EE groups. We assessed the linear time-series of motion activity using a novel structural break test which examined the dataset for change in circadian and day-by-day motion activity. fMRI was used to map brain-wide response using a functional connectome analysis pipeline. Awake calcium imaging was performed on the dorsal CA1 pyramidal layer. We found the preeminent behavioral feature in EE was a forward shift in the circadian rhythm, prolongation of activity in the dark photoperiod, and overall decreased motion activity. The crepuscular period of dusk was seen as the critical period of divergence between EE and SE mice. The functional processes at dusk in EE included increased functional connectivity in the visual cortex, motor cortex, retrosplenial granular cortex, and cingulate cortex using seed-based analysis. Network based statistics found a modulated functional connectome in EE concentrated in two hubs: the hippocampal formation and isocortical network. These hubs experienced a higher node degree and significant enhanced edge connectivity. Calcium imaging revealed increased spikes per second and maximum firing rate in the dorsal CA1 pyramidal layer, in addition to location (anterior-posterior and medial-lateral) effect size differences between EE and SE. The emergence of functional-neuronal changes due to enrichment consisted of enhanced hippocampal-isocortex functional connectivity and CA1 neuronal increased spiking linked to a circadian shift during the dusk period. Future studies should explore the molecular consequences of enrichment inducing shifts in the circadian period.

Research Area(s)

  • Ca2+ imaging, Critical period, Dark/light phase, Dawn/dusk, Diurnal/nocturnal, Environmental enrichment, fMRI

Citation Format(s)

Environmental enrichment leads to behavioral circadian shifts enhancing brain-wide functional connectivity between sensory cortices and eliciting increased hippocampal spiking. / Manno, Francis A.M.; An, Ziqi; Kumar, Rachit; Su, Junfeng; Liu, Jiaming; Wu, Ed X.; He, Jufang; Feng, Yanqiu; Lau, Condon.

In: NeuroImage, Vol. 252, 119016, 15.05.2022.

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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