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Selective optogenetic stimulation of efferent fibers in the vagus nerve of a large mammal

Booth, LC; Yao, ST; Korsak, A; Farmer, DGS; Hood, SG; McCormick, D; Boesley, Q; ... Gourine, AV; + view all (2021) Selective optogenetic stimulation of efferent fibers in the vagus nerve of a large mammal. Brain Stimulation , 14 pp. 88-96. 10.1016/j.brs.2020.11.010. Green open access

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: Electrical stimulation applied to individual organs, peripheral nerves, or specific brain regions has been used to treat a range of medical conditions. In cardiovascular disease, autonomic dysfunction contributes to the disease progression and electrical stimulation of the vagus nerve has been pursued as a treatment for the purpose of restoring the autonomic balance. However, this approach lacks selectivity in activating function- and organ-specific vagal fibers and, despite promising results of many preclinical studies, has so far failed to translate into a clinical treatment of cardiovascular disease. OBJECTIVE: Here we report a successful application of optogenetics for selective stimulation of vagal efferent activity in a large animal model (sheep). METHODS AND RESULTS: Twelve weeks after viral transduction of a subset of vagal motoneurons, strong axonal membrane expression of the excitatory light-sensitive ion channel ChIEF was achieved in the efferent projections innervating thoracic organs and reaching beyond the level of the diaphragm. Blue laser or LED light (>10 mW mm-2; 1 ms pulses) applied to the cervical vagus triggered precisely timed, strong bursts of efferent activity with evoked action potentials propagating at speeds of ∼6 m s-1. CONCLUSIONS: These findings demonstrate that in species with a large, multi-fascicled vagus nerve, it is possible to stimulate a specific sub-population of efferent fibers using light at a site remote from the vector delivery, marking an important step towards eventual clinical use of the optogenetic technology for autonomic neuromodulation.

Type: Article
Title: Selective optogenetic stimulation of efferent fibers in the vagus nerve of a large mammal
Location: United States
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.brs.2020.11.010
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.brs.2020.11.010
Language: English
Additional information: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
Keywords: autonomic nervous system, brainstem, neuromodulation, optogenetic, vagal preganglionic neurons, vagus nerve stimulation
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences > Neuro, Physiology and Pharmacology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Dept of Med Phys and Biomedical Eng
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10116150
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