Cortical network activity is generated by complex interactions between excitatory pyramidal cells and inhibitory interneurons. A highly influential hypothesis of autism predicts that overexcitation in specific cortical circuits might disrupt information processing and lead to abnormal patterns of activity and seizures in a subset of individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Defective maturation of inhibitory circuits has been proposed as an underlying cause for epilepsy- autism comorbidity. This project will explore the contribution of interneurons to the function of cortical circuitry in mouse models of ASD, with a focus in cognitive flexibility, a process severely affected in ASD patients.
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5 Del Pino I, Rico B*, Marín O* (2018). Neural circuit dysfunction in mouse models of neurodevelopmental disorders, Current Opinion in Neurobiology, 48:174-182.