The function of the nigro-striatal pathway on neuronal entropy in the basal ganglia (BG) output nucleus, i.e. the entopeduncular nucleus (EPN) was investigated in the unilaterally 6-hyroxydopamine (6-OHDA)-lesioned rat model of Parkinson's disease (PD). In both control subjects and subjects with 6-OHDA lesion of dopamine (DA) the nigro-striatal pathway, a histological hallmark for parkinsonism, neuronal entropy in EPN was maximal in neurons with firing rates ranging between 15 and 25 Hz. In 6-OHDA lesioned rats, neuronal entropy in the EPN was specifically higher in neurons with firing rates above 25 Hz. Our data establishes that the nigro-striatal pathway controls neuronal entropy in motor circuitry and that the parkinsonian condition is associated with abnormal relationship between firing rate and neuronal entropy in BG output nuclei. The neuronal firing rates and entropy relationship provide putative relevant electrophysiological information to investigate the sensory-motor processing in normal condition and conditions such as movement disorders.
Keywords: 6-OHDA; Entropy; basal ganglia; dopamine; globus pallidus internal; rat.