Expression of COUP-TFII nuclear receptor in restricted GABAergic neuronal populations in the adult rat hippocampus.
Fuentealba P., Klausberger T., Karayannis T., Suen WY., Huck J., Tomioka R., Rockland K., Capogna M., Studer M., Morales M., Somogyi P.
The COUP-TFII nuclear receptor, also known as NR2F2, is expressed in the developing ventral telencephalon and modulates the tangential migration of a set of subpallial neuronal progenitors during forebrain development. Little information is available about its expression patterns in the adult brain. We have identified the cell populations expressing COUP-TFII and the contribution of some of them to network activity in vivo. Expression of COUP-TFII by hippocampal pyramidal and dentate granule cells, as well as neurons in the neocortex, formed a gradient increasing from undetectable in the dorsal to very strong in the ventral sectors. In the dorsal hippocampal CA1 area, COUP-TFII was restricted to GABAergic interneurons and expressed in several, largely nonoverlapping neuronal populations. Immunoreactivity was present in calretinin-, neuronal nitric oxide synthase-, and reelin-expressing cells, as well as in subsets of cholecystokinin- or calbindin-expressing or radiatum-retrohippocampally projecting GABAergic cells, but not in parvalbumin- and/or somatostatin-expressing interneurons. In vivo recording and juxtacellular labeling of COUP-TFII-expressing cells revealed neurogliaform cells, basket cells in stratum radiatum and tachykinin-expressing radiatum dentate innervating interneurons, identified by their axodendritic distributions. They showed cell type-selective phase-locked firing to the theta rhythm but no activation during sharp wave/ripple oscillations. These basket cells in stratum radiatum and neurogliaform cells fired at the peak of theta oscillations detected extracellularly in stratum pyramidale, unlike previously reported ivy cells, which fired at the trough. The characterization of COUP-TFII-expressing neurons suggests that this developmentally important transcription factor plays cell type-specific role(s) in the adult hippocampus.