Catecholaminergic effects on neuronal activity related to a delayed response task in monkey prefrontal cortex

J Neurophysiol. 1990 Jun;63(6):1385-400. doi: 10.1152/jn.1990.63.6.1385.

Abstract

1. Using iontophoretic techniques, we investigated the effects of dopamine (DA) and noradrenaline (NA) on neuronal activity related to a delayed response (DR) task in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) of the Japanese macaque monkeys. The DR task was initiated by rotation of a handle to a central zone and consisted of seven distinct time periods: an initial waiting period of 0.3 s, a precue period of 1 s (a central green lamp), a cue period of 1 s (left or right lamp), a delay period of 4 s, a go period of 1 s (red lamp in the center; rotation of the handle to either the left or right zone), a hold period (holding of the handle in either the left or right zone for 0.3 s), and a final reward period. 2. A total of 116 neurons were DR task related. They showed increases in activity during the precue period (Precue-types, n = 19), during both the cue and go periods (Cue/GO-types, n = 17), the go period (GO-types, n = 16), and during the delay period (Delay-types, n = 64). The Delay-type neurons were further divided into differential neurons (n = 33), for which the magnitude of the delay-related activity differed significantly between left- and right-cue trials, and nondifferential neurons (n = 31). Some of the Delay-type neurons also showed increases in activity during the cue (n = 26), go (n = 27), or both the cue and go periods (n = 11). 3. DA or NA, applied iontophoretically with a current of 50 nA, induced increased or decreased responses in most of the DR task-related neurons. DA increased activity of most of the Cue/GO-(16/17), GO-(13/16), and Delay-type neurons (49/64), and NA decreased activity of most of the Precue- (13/19) and non-differential Delay-type neurons (25/31). Thus different types of DR task-related neurons showed different responses to DA and NA. 4. In Cue/GO-, GO-, and/or Delay-type neurons, DA increased the activity related to the cue, go, and delay periods more strongly than it increased background activity. As a result, the ratio [i.e., signal-to-noise (S/N) ratio] of activity related to the cue, go, and delay periods to background activity was increased. 5. In Precue-type or nondifferential Delay-type neurons, NA decreased background activity more strongly than it decreased activity during the precue or delay period.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Behavior, Animal / physiology*
  • Dopamine / pharmacology*
  • Frontal Lobe / cytology
  • Frontal Lobe / drug effects
  • Frontal Lobe / physiology*
  • Macaca
  • Male
  • Neurons / drug effects
  • Neurons / physiology*
  • Norepinephrine / pharmacology*
  • Reaction Time

Substances

  • Dopamine
  • Norepinephrine