Distinct retrosplenial cortex cell populations and their spike dynamics during ketamine-induced unconscious state

Grace E. Fox, Meng Li, Fang Zhao, Joseph Zhuo Tsien

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Ketamine is known to induce psychotic-like symptoms, including delirium and visual hallucinations. It also causes neuronal damage and cell death in the retrosplenial cortex (RSC), an area that is thought to be a part of high visual cortical pathways and at least partially responsible for ketamine’s psychotomimetic activities. However, the basic physiological properties of RSC cells as well as their response to ketamine in vivo remained largely unexplored. Here, we combine a computational method, the Inter-Spike Interval Classification Analysis (ISICA), and in vivo recordings to uncover and profile excitatory cell subtypes within layers 2&3 and 5&6 of the RSC in mice within both conscious, sleep, and ketamine-induced unconscious states. We demonstrate two distinct excitatory principal cell sub-populations, namely, high-bursting excitatory principal cells and low-bursting excitatory principal cells, within layers 2&3, and show that this classification is robust over the conscious states, namely quiet awake, and natural unconscious sleep periods. Similarly, we provide evidence of high-bursting and low-bursting excitatory principal cell sub-populations within layers 5&6 that remained distinct during quiet awake and sleep states. We further examined how these subtypes are dynamically altered by ketamine. During ketamine-induced unconscious state, these distinct excitatory principal cell subtypes in both layer 2&3 and layer 5&6 exhibited distinct dynamics. We also uncovered different dynamics of local field potential under various brain states in layer 2&3 and layer 5&6. Interestingly, ketamine administration induced high gamma oscillations in layer 2&3 of the RSC, but not layer 5&6. Our results show that excitatory principal cells within RSC layers 2&3 and 5&6 contain multiple physiologically distinct sub-populations, and they are differentially affected by ketamine.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere0187198
JournalPloS one
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • General


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