Neurostimulation as a tool for Basic Science and Medicine.
Anxiety disorders are the single most common class of psychiatric diseases, afflicting up to 28% of the adult population. Although human imaging studies have implicated the amygdala in anxiety, little is known about the functional role of individual microcircuits and distal circuits in terms of their individual contributions to anxiety. Optogenetics, the use of genetically-encodable, light-activated proteins that can be used to depolarize or hyperpolarize cell membranes, is a quickly-growing field. We developed optogenetic projection-specific targeting, electrophysiological and imaging techniques to parse the different circuit contributions, and we apply this multidisciplinary approach to provide a complete view of how amygdala interactions with the rest of the brain can govern anxiety-related behaviors… Original Video »