Basal ganglia: Acetylcholine interactions and behavior

M. Deffains, A. Adler, M. Joshua, J. A. Goldberg, G. Morris, H. Bergman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


Neuromodulation of neuronal activity in the striatum - the main input stage of the basal ganglia - is mediated by dopamine and acetylcholine. Striatal acetylcholine is provided by cholinergic interneurons, which constitute 1-2% of striatal neuronal population. These neurons exhibit a tonic irregular discharge and homogeneously respond to behaviorally-related events with transient pauses in their tonic discharge, concomitantly with the phasic responses of midbrain dopaminergic neurons. Together, dopamine and acetylcholine control striatal excitability and cellular learning enabling optimal behaviour. Modification of the dopamine-acetylcholine balance leads to the severe clinical symptoms seen in patients suffering from basal ganglia disorders.

Original languageAmerican English
Title of host publicationThe Curated Reference Collection in Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Psychology
PublisherElsevier Science Ltd.
ISBN (Electronic)9780128093245
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


  • Acetylcholine
  • Attention
  • Basal ganglia
  • Basal ganglia disorders
  • Behavior
  • Interneurons
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Reward
  • Striatum


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