The broad goal of the proposal is to understand the functional organization of the early thalamocortical stages of processing in the auditory system. This involves a better functional understanding of the various pathways connecting the inferior colliculus (1C), medial geniculate body (MGB), and first and second auditory cortices (Al and All). We will use an in vitro slice preparation of the mouse brain in which different slice configurations will have the 1C to MGB, MGB to AI/AII, Al to MGB, and Al to All pathways intact. We will use uncaging of glutamate by photostimulation or minimal electrical stimulation to test the function of each of the pathways. In particular, we shall attempt to identify each pathway as a driver (i.e., main conveyer of information) or modulator, and by identifying the drivers, we hope to construct a functional hierarchy of information flow. This will allow us to test the hypothesis that a main route of information flow in the system is from the central 1C (ICc) to the ventral portion of MGB (MGBv) to Al to the dorsal MGB (MGBd, which we suggest is a higher order thalamic relay) to All. This is contrasted to conventional views: one is of parallel paths of ICc to MGBv to Al and shell region of 1C (ICs) to MGBd to All;another is a path from ICc to MGBv to Al to All. These hypotheses of functional organization are not mutually exclusive, and combinations may exist. Nonetheless, we must obtain a better understanding of how auditory information is routed through the first few stages of cortical processing before we can begin to understand how pathology in these pathways can lead to problems in hearing. That is, cognitive auditory functions, such as lexical-semantic processing, phonological information extraction, selective attention and object recognition are almost certainly subserved by auditory cortical networks, and it is these networks that we must better understand.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD)
Research Project (R01)
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Cognitive Neuroscience Study Section (COG)
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Platt, Christopher
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University of Chicago
Schools of Medicine
United States
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Sherman, S Murray (2016) Thalamus plays a central role in ongoing cortical functioning. Nat Neurosci 19:533-41
Lam, Ying-Wan; Sherman, S Murray (2015) Functional topographic organization of the motor reticulothalamic pathway. J Neurophysiol 113:3090-7
Petrof, Iraklis; Viaene, Angela N; Sherman, S Murray (2015) Properties of the primary somatosensory cortex projection to the primary motor cortex in the mouse. J Neurophysiol 113:2400-7
Liu, Tingting; Petrof, Iraklis; Sherman, S Murray (2015) Modulatory effects of activation of metabotropic glutamate receptors on GABAergic circuits in the mouse thalamus. J Neurophysiol 113:2646-52
Sherman, S Murray (2014) The function of metabotropic glutamate receptors in thalamus and cortex. Neuroscientist 20:136-49
Liu, Tingting; Petrof, Iraklis; Sherman, S Murray (2014) Modulatory effects of activation of metabotropic glutamate receptors on GABAergic circuits in the mouse cortex. J Neurophysiol 111:2287-97
Mitchell, Anna S; Sherman, S Murray; Sommer, Marc A et al. (2014) Advances in understanding mechanisms of thalamic relays in cognition and behavior. J Neurosci 34:15340-6
De Pasquale, Roberto; Sherman, S Murray (2013) A modulatory effect of the feedback from higher visual areas to V1 in the mouse. J Neurophysiol 109:2618-31
Lam, Y-W; Sherman, S M (2013) Activation of both Group I and Group II metabotropic glutamatergic receptors suppress retinogeniculate transmission. Neuroscience 242:78-84
Viaene, Angela N; Petrof, Iraklis; Sherman, S Murray (2013) Activation requirements for metabotropic glutamate receptors. Neurosci Lett 541:67-72

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