Neuromodulatory control of striatal plasticity and behavior

Curr Opin Neurobiol. 2011 Apr;21(2):322-7. doi: 10.1016/j.conb.2011.01.005. Epub 2011 Feb 16.


Excitatory synapses onto projection neurons in the striatum, the input nucleus of the basal ganglia, play a key role in regulating basal ganglia circuit function and are a major site of long-term synaptic plasticity. Here, we review the mechanisms and regulation of both long-term potentiation and long-term depression at these synapses. In particular, we highlight the role that neuromodulators play in determining the strength and direction of plasticity, which ultimately shapes the balance of activity in basal ganglia circuits and regulates motor behavior.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Behavior / physiology*
  • Corpus Striatum / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Neuronal Plasticity / physiology*
  • Psychomotor Performance / physiology*