Mathis et al, 2017. Neuron

Mathis et al, 2017. Neuron

Mathis MW, Mathis A, Uchida N. Somatosensory Cortex Plays an Essential Role in Forelimb Motor Adaptation in Mice, Neuron. (2017)10.1016/j.neuron.2017.02.049. 

•Mice exhibit motor adaptations to forelimb force field-based perturbations

•Optogenetic inhibition of forelimb somatosensory cortex (S1) abolished motor adaptation

•The same photoinhibition did not impair motor control or reward-based learning

•S1 plays an essential role in updating the memory about forelimb motor perturbations


Our motor outputs are constantly re-calibrated to adapt to systematic perturbations. This motor adaptation is thought to depend on the ability to form a memory of a systematic perturbation, often called an internal model. However, the mechanisms underlying the formation, storage, and expression of such models remain unknown. Here, we developed a mouse model to study forelimb adaptation to force field perturbations. We found that temporally precise photoinhibition of somatosensory cortex (S1) applied concurrently with the force field abolished the ability to update subsequent motor commands needed to reduce motor errors. This S1 photoinhibition did not impair basic motor patterns, post-perturbation completion of the action, or their performance in a reward-based learning task. Moreover, S1 photoinhibition after partial adaptation blocked further adaptation, but did not affect the expression of already-adapted motor commands. Thus, S1 is critically involved in updating the memory about the perturbation that is essential for forelimb motor adaptation.

News piece at the Dept. website

(please note M.W. Mathis was M.W. Amoroso)

Li H, Kuwajima T, Oakley D, et al. Protein Prenylation Constitutes an Endogenous Brake on Axonal GrowthCell Reports. 2016.16 (2) :545 - 558. 

Ho R, Sances S, Gowing G, Amoroso, MW, et al. ALS disrupts spinal motor neuron maturation and aging pathways within gene co-expression networks. Nature Neuroscience, 2016.


Cohen JY, Amoroso MW, Uchida N. Serotonergic neurons signal reward and punishment on multiple timescaleseLife. 2015. 10.7554/eLife.06346
Read the eLife Insight here (By Peter Dayan and Quentin Huys) 
Recommended by F1000


Re D B, Le Verche V, Yu C, Amoroso, MW,  et al. Necroptosis Drives Motor Neuron Death in Models of Both Sporadic and Familial ALSNeuron. 2014. 81 :1001 - 1008. 
Read the Neuron review here (By Sheila K. PiroozniaValina L. DawsonTed M. Dawson)


Amoroso MW, Croft GF, Williams DJ, et al. Accelerated High-Yield Generation of Limb-Innervating Motor Neurons from Human Stem Cells. Journal of Neuroscience. 2013. 33 (2) :574 - 586.
Read the Journal of Neuroscience Journal Club article here 


Kanning KC, Li H, Nikulina E, et al. Making motor axons grow. 2012. 30 (8) :613 - 614.

Nédelec S, Peljto M, Shi P, et al. Concentration-Dependent Requirement for Local Protein Synthesis in Motor Neuron Subtype-Specific Response to Axon Guidance Cues. Journal of Neuroscience, 2012. 32 (4) :1496 - 1506. 

Takazawa T, Croft GF, Amoroso MW, et al. Maturation of Spinal Motor Neurons Derived from Human Embryonic Stem Cells. PLOS ONE, 2012. 7 (7) :e40154. 


Boulting GL*, Kiskinis E*, Croft GF*, Amoroso, MW*, Oakley, D* et al. A functionally characterized test set of human induced pluripotent stem cells. Nature Biotechnology, 2011. 29 (3) :279 - 286. 
*co-first authors

Bock C, Kiskinis E, Verstappen G, et al. Reference Maps of human ES and iPS cell variation enable high-throughput characterization of pluripotent cell lines. Cell, 2011.144 (3) :439 - 452.