Author(s): Alam M, Schwabe K, Krauss JK
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Abstract Recently, the pedunculopontine nucleus has been highlighted as a target for deep brain stimulation for the treatment of freezing of postural instability and gait disorders in Parkinson's disease and progressive supranuclear palsy. There is great controversy, however, as to the exact location of the optimal site for stimulation. In this review, we give an overview of anatomy and connectivity of the pedunculopontine nucleus area in rats, cats, non-human primates and humans. Additionally, we report on the behavioural changes after chemical or electrical manipulation of the pedunculopontine nucleus. We discuss the relation to adjacent regions of the pedunculopontine nucleus, such as the cuneiform nucleus and the subcuneiform nucleus, which together with the pedunculopontine nucleus are the main areas of the mesencephalic locomotor region and play a major role in the initiation of gait. This information is discussed with respect to the experimental designs used for research purposes directed to a better understanding of the circuitry pathway of the pedunculopontine nucleus in association with basal ganglia pathology, and with respect to deep brain stimulation of the pedunculopontine nucleus area in humans.
This article was published in Brain
and referenced in Journal of Clinical Research & Bioethics