Oscillatory entrainment of striatal neurons in freely moving rats

Joshua D. Berke*, Murat Okatan, Jennifer Skurski, Howard B. Eichenbaum

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

385 Citations (Scopus)


Oscillations and synchrony in basal ganglia circuits may play a key role in the organization of voluntary actions and habits. We recorded single units and local field potentials from multiple striatal and cortical locations simultaneously, over a range of behavioral states. We observed opposite gradients of oscillatory entrainment, with dorsal/lateral striatal neurons entrained to high-voltage spindle oscillations ("spike wave discharges") and ventral/medial striatal neurons entrained to the hippocampal theta rhythm. While the majority of units were likely medium-spiny projection neurons, a second neuronal population showed characteristic features of fast-spiking GABAergic interneurons, including tonic activity, brief waveforms, and high-frequency bursts. These fired at an earlier spindle phase than the main neuronal population, and their density within striatum corresponded closely to the intensity of spindle oscillations. The orchestration of oscillatory activity by networks of striatal interneurons may be an important mechanism in the pathophysiology of neurological disorders such as Parkinson's disease.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)883-896
Number of pages14
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 16 Sept 2004
Externally publishedYes


We thank Peter Magill, Anna Grzymała-Busse, Michael Hasselmo, Nancy Kopell, Ana Nathe, Nicholas Sanderson, and John White for comments on earlier versions of the manuscript; and Lotus McDougal for technical assistance. This work was supported by grants from the National Institute on Drug Abuse and the National Institutes of Mental Health to J.D.B.

FundersFunder number
National Institutes of Mental Health
National Institute of Mental HealthF32MH012908
National Institute on Drug Abuse


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