Altered Neural and Behavioral Dynamics in Huntingtons Disease: An Entropy Conservation ApproachReport as inadecuate

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Huntington-s disease HD is an inherited condition that results in neurodegeneration of the striatum, the forebrain structure that processes cortical information for behavioral output. In the R6-2 transgenic mouse model of HD, striatal neurons exhibit aberrant firing patterns that are coupled with reduced flexibility in the motor system. The aim of this study was to test the patterns of unpredictability in brain and behavior in wild-type WT and R6-2 mice.

Methodology-Principal Findings

Striatal local field potentials LFP were recorded from 18 WT and 17 R6-2 mice aged 8–11 weeks while the mice were exploring a plus-shaped maze. We targeted LFP activity for up to 2 s before and 2 s after each choice-point entry. Approximate Entropy ApEn was calculated for LFPs and Shannon Entropy was used to measure the probability of arm choice, as well as the likelihood of making consecutive 90-degree turns in the maze. We found that although the total number of choice-point crossings and entropy of arm-choice probability was similar in both groups, R6-2 mice had more predictable behavioral responses i.e., were less likely to make 90-degree turns and perform them in alternation with running straight down the same arm, while exhibiting more unpredictable striatal activity, as indicated by higher ApEn values. In both WT and R6-2 mice, however, behavioral unpredictability was negatively correlated with LFP ApEn.


HD results in a perseverative exploration of the environment, occurring in concert with more unpredictable brain activity. Our results support the entropy conservation hypothesis in which unpredictable behavioral patterns are coupled with more predictable brain activation patterns, suggesting that this may be a fundamental process unaffected by HD.

Author: S. Lee Hong, Scott J. Barton, George V. Rebec



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