Spotlight on movement disorders: What optogenetics has to offer.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Elucidating the neuronal mechanisms underlying movement disorders is a major challenge because of the intricacy of the relevant neural circuits, which are characterized by diverse cell types and complex connectivity. A major limitation of traditional techniques, such as electrical stimulation or lesions, is that individual elements of a neural circuit cannot be selectively manipulated. Moreover, available treatments are largely based on trial and error rather than a detailed understanding of the circuit mechanisms. Gaps in our knowledge of the circuit mechanisms for movement disorders, as well as mechanisms underlying known treatments such as deep brain stimulation, make it difficult to design new and improved treatment options. In this perspective, we discuss how optogenetics, which allows researchers to use light to manipulate neuronal activity, can contribute to the understanding and treatment of movement disorders. We outline the advantages and limitations of optogenetics and discuss examples of studies that have used this tool to clarify the role of the basal ganglia circuitry in movement.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Rossi, MA; Calakos, N; Yin, HH

Published Date

  • April 15, 2015

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 30 / 5

Start / End Page

  • 624 - 631

PubMed ID

  • 25777796

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC4397176

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1531-8257

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1002/mds.26184


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States