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Sample records for alters neuronal function

  1. Radiation induces acute alterations in neuronal function.

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    Peter H Wu

    Full Text Available Every year, nearly 200,000 patients undergo radiation for brain tumors. For both patients and caregivers the most distressing adverse effect is impaired cognition. Efforts to protect against this debilitating effect have suffered from inadequate understanding of the cellular mechanisms of radiation damage. In the past it was accepted that radiation-induced normal tissue injury resulted from a progressive reduction in the survival of clonogenic cells. Moreover, because radiation-induced brain dysfunction is believed to evolve over months to years, most studies have focused on late changes in brain parenchyma. However, clinically, acute changes in cognition are also observed. Because neurons are fully differentiated post-mitotic cells, little information exists on the acute effects of radiation on synaptic function. The purpose of our study was to assess the potential acute effects of radiation on neuronal function utilizing ex vivo hippocampal brain slices. The cellular localization and functional status of excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmitter receptors was identified by immunoblotting. Electrophysiological recordings were obtained both for populations of neuronal cells and individual neurons. In the dentate gyrus region of isolated ex vivo slices, radiation led to early decreases in tyrosine phosphorylation and removal of excitatory N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs from the cell surface while simultaneously increasing the surface expression of inhibitory gamma-aminobutyric acid receptors (GABA(ARs. These alterations in cellular localization corresponded with altered synaptic responses and inhibition of long-term potentiation. The non-competitive NMDAR antagonist memantine blocked these radiation-induced alterations in cellular distribution. These findings demonstrate acute effects of radiation on neuronal cells within isolated brain slices and open new avenues for study.

  2. Altered neuronal excitability underlies impaired hippocampal function in an animal model of psychosis

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    Thomas eGrüter

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Psychosis is accompanied by severe attentional deficits, and impairments in associational-memory processing and sensory information processing that are ascribed to dysfunctions in prefrontal and hippocampal function. Disruptions of glutamatergic signalling may underlie these alterations: Antagonism of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR results in similar molecular, cellular, cognitive and behavioural changes in rodents and/or humans as those that occur in psychosis, raising the question as to whether changes in glutamatergic transmission may be intrinsic to the pathophysiology of the disease. In an animal model of psychosis that comprises treatment with the irreversible NMDAR-antagonist, MK801, we explored the cellular mechanisms that may underlie hippocampal dysfunction in psychosis. MK801-treatment resulted in a profound loss of hippocampal LTP that was evident 4 weeks after treatment. Whereas neuronal expression of the immediate early gene, Arc, was enhanced in the hippocampus by spatial learning in controls, MK801-treated animals failed to show activity-dependent increases in Arc expression. By contrast, a significant increase in basal Arc expression in the absence of learning was evident compared to controls. Paired-pulse facilitation was increased at the 40 ms interval indicating that NMDAR and/or fast GABAergic-mediated neurotransmission was disrupted. In line with this, MK801-treatment resulted in a significant decrease in GABA(A, and increase in GABA(B-receptor-expression in PFC, along with a significant increase of GABA(B- and NMDAR-GluN2B expression in the dentate gyrus. NMDAR-GluN1 or GluN2A subunit expression was unchanged. These data suggest that in psychosis, deficits in hippocampus-dependent memory may be caused by a loss of hippocampal LTP that arises through enhanced hippocampal neuronal excitability, altered GluN2B and GABA receptor expression and an uncoupling of the hippocampus-prefrontal cortex circuitry.

  3. Altered neuronal excitability underlies impaired hippocampal function in an animal model of psychosis

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    Grüter, Thomas; Wiescholleck, Valentina; Dubovyk, Valentyna; Aliane, Verena; Manahan-Vaughan, Denise

    2015-01-01

    Psychosis is accompanied by severe attentional deficits, and impairments in associational-memory processing and sensory information processing that are ascribed to dysfunctions in prefrontal and hippocampal function. Disruptions of glutamatergic signaling may underlie these alterations: Antagonism of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) results in similar molecular, cellular, cognitive and behavioral changes in rodents and/or humans as those that occur in psychosis, raising the question as to whether changes in glutamatergic transmission may be intrinsic to the pathophysiology of the disease. In an animal model of psychosis that comprises treatment with the irreversible NMDAR-antagonist, MK801, we explored the cellular mechanisms that may underlie hippocampal dysfunction in psychosis. MK801-treatment resulted in a profound loss of hippocampal LTP that was evident 4 weeks after treatment. Whereas neuronal expression of the immediate early gene, Arc, was enhanced in the hippocampus by spatial learning in controls, MK801-treated animals failed to show activity-dependent increases in Arc expression. By contrast, a significant increase in basal Arc expression in the absence of learning was evident compared to controls. Paired-pulse (PP) facilitation was increased at the 40 ms interval indicating that NMDAR and/or fast GABAergic-mediated neurotransmission was disrupted. In line with this, MK801-treatment resulted in a significant decrease in GABA(A), and increase in GABA(B)-receptor-expression in PFC, along with a significant increase of GABA(B)- and NMDAR-GluN2B expression in the dentate gyrus. NMDAR-GluN1 or GluN2A subunit expression was unchanged. These data suggest that in psychosis, deficits in hippocampus-dependent memory may be caused by a loss of hippocampal LTP that arises through enhanced hippocampal neuronal excitability, altered GluN2B and GABA receptor expression and an uncoupling of the hippocampus-prefrontal cortex circuitry. PMID:26042007

  4. Prenatal exposure to cannabinoids evokes long-lasting functional alterations by targeting CB1 receptors on developing cortical neurons.

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    de Salas-Quiroga, Adán; Díaz-Alonso, Javier; García-Rincón, Daniel; Remmers, Floortje; Vega, David; Gómez-Cañas, María; Lutz, Beat; Guzmán, Manuel; Galve-Roperh, Ismael

    2015-11-03

    The CB1 cannabinoid receptor, the main target of Δ(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the most prominent psychoactive compound of marijuana, plays a crucial regulatory role in brain development as evidenced by the neurodevelopmental consequences of its manipulation in animal models. Likewise, recreational cannabis use during pregnancy affects brain structure and function of the progeny. However, the precise neurobiological substrates underlying the consequences of prenatal THC exposure remain unknown. As CB1 signaling is known to modulate long-range corticofugal connectivity, we analyzed the impact of THC exposure on cortical projection neuron development. THC administration to pregnant mice in a restricted time window interfered with subcerebral projection neuron generation, thereby altering corticospinal connectivity, and produced long-lasting alterations in the fine motor performance of the adult offspring. Consequences of THC exposure were reminiscent of those elicited by CB1 receptor genetic ablation, and CB1-null mice were resistant to THC-induced alterations. The identity of embryonic THC neuronal targets was determined by a Cre-mediated, lineage-specific, CB1 expression-rescue strategy in a CB1-null background. Early and selective CB1 reexpression in dorsal telencephalic glutamatergic neurons but not forebrain GABAergic neurons rescued the deficits in corticospinal motor neuron development of CB1-null mice and restored susceptibility to THC-induced motor alterations. In addition, THC administration induced an increase in seizure susceptibility that was mediated by its interference with CB1-dependent regulation of both glutamatergic and GABAergic neuron development. These findings demonstrate that prenatal exposure to THC has long-lasting deleterious consequences in the adult offspring solely mediated by its ability to disrupt the neurodevelopmental role of CB1 signaling.

  5. Alteration of protein folding and degradation in motor neuron diseases : Implications and protective functions of small heat shock proteins

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    Carra, Serena; Crippa, Valeria; Rusmini, Paola; Boncoraglio, Alessandra; Minoia, Melania; Giorgetti, Elisa; Kampinga, Harm H.; Poletti, Angelo

    2012-01-01

    Motor neuron diseases (MNDs) are neurodegenerative disorders that specifically affect the survival and function of upper and/or lower motor neurons. Since motor neurons are responsible for the control of voluntary muscular movement, MNDs are characterized by muscle spasticity, weakness and atrophy.

  6. PCB 136 atropselectively alters morphometric and functional parameters of neuronal connectivity in cultured rat hippocampal neurons via ryanodine receptor-dependent mechanisms.

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    Yang, Dongren; Kania-Korwel, Izabela; Ghogha, Atefeh; Chen, Hao; Stamou, Marianna; Bose, Diptiman D; Pessah, Isaac N; Lehmler, Hans-Joachim; Lein, Pamela J

    2014-04-01

    We recently demonstrated that polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) congeners with multiple ortho chlorine substitutions sensitize ryanodine receptors (RyRs), and this activity promotes Ca²⁺-dependent dendritic growth in cultured neurons. Many ortho-substituted congeners display axial chirality, and we previously reported that the chiral congener PCB 136 (2,2',3,3',6,6'-hexachlorobiphenyl) atropselectively sensitizes RyRs. Here, we test the hypothesis that PCB 136 atropisomers differentially alter dendritic growth and other parameters of neuronal connectivity influenced by RyR activity. (-)-PCB 136, which potently sensitizes RyRs, enhances dendritic growth in primary cultures of rat hippocampal neurons, whereas (+)-PCB 136, which lacks RyR activity, has no effect on dendritic growth. The dendrite-promoting activity of (-)-PCB 136 is observed at concentrations ranging from 0.1 to 100 nM and is blocked by pharmacologic RyR antagonism. Neither atropisomer alters axonal growth or cell viability. Quantification of PCB 136 atropisomers in hippocampal cultures indicates that atropselective effects on dendritic growth are not due to differential partitioning of atropisomers into cultured cells. Imaging of hippocampal neurons loaded with Ca²⁺-sensitive dye demonstrates that (-)-PCB 136 but not (+)-PCB 136 increases the frequency of spontaneous Ca²⁺ oscillations. Similarly, (-)-PCB 136 but not (+)-PCB 136 increases the activity of hippocampal neurons plated on microelectrode arrays. These data support the hypothesis that atropselective effects on RyR activity translate into atropselective effects of PCB 136 atropisomers on neuronal connectivity, and suggest that the variable atropisomeric enrichment of chiral PCBs observed in the human population may be a significant determinant of individual susceptibility for adverse neurodevelopmental outcomes following PCB exposure.

  7. Neonatal Seizures Alter NMDA Glutamate receptor GluN2A and 3A Subunit Expression and Function in Hippocampal CA1 Neurons

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    Chengwen eZhou

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Neonatal seizures are commonly caused by hypoxic and/or ischemic injury during birth and can lead to long-term epilepsy and cognitive deficits. In a rodent hypoxic seizure (HS model, we have previously demonstrated a critical role for seizure-induced enhancement of the AMPA subtype of glutamate receptor (GluA in epileptogenesis and cognitive consequences, in part due to GluA maturational upregulation of expression. Similarly, as the expression and function of the NMDA subtype of glutamate receptor (GluN is also developmentally controlled, we examined how early life seizures during the critical period of synaptogenesis could modify GluN development and function. In a postnatal day (P10 rat model of neonatal seizures, we found that seizures could alter GluN2/3 subunit composition of GluNs and physiological function of synaptic GluNs. In hippocampal slices removed from rats within 48-96 hours following seizures, the amplitudes of synaptic GluN-mediated evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (eEPSCs were elevated in CA1 pyramidal neurons. Moreover, GluN eEPSCs showed a decreased sensitivity to GluN2B selective antagonists and decreased Mg2+ sensitivity at negative holding potentials, indicating a higher proportion of GluN2A and GluN3A subunit function, respectively. These physiological findings were accompanied by a concurrent increase in GluN2A phosphorylation and GluN3A protein. These results suggest that altered GluN function and expression could potentially contribute to future epileptogenesis following neonatal seizures, and may represent potential therapeutic targets for the blockade of future epileptogenesis in the developing brain.

  8. Pseudorabies virus infection alters neuronal activity and connectivity in vitro.

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    Kelly M McCarthy

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Alpha-herpesviruses, including human herpes simplex virus 1 & 2, varicella zoster virus and the swine pseudorabies virus (PRV, infect the peripheral nervous system of their hosts. Symptoms of infection often include itching, numbness, or pain indicative of altered neurological function. To determine if there is an in vitro electrophysiological correlate to these characteristic in vivo symptoms, we infected cultured rat sympathetic neurons with well-characterized strains of PRV known to produce virulent or attenuated symptoms in animals. Whole-cell patch clamp recordings were made at various times after infection. By 8 hours of infection with virulent PRV, action potential (AP firing rates increased substantially and were accompanied by hyperpolarized resting membrane potentials and spikelet-like events. Coincident with the increase in AP firing rate, adjacent neurons exhibited coupled firing events, first with AP-spikelets and later with near identical resting membrane potentials and AP firing. Small fusion pores between adjacent cell bodies formed early after infection as demonstrated by transfer of the low molecular weight dye, Lucifer Yellow. Later, larger pores formed as demonstrated by transfer of high molecular weight Texas red-dextran conjugates between infected cells. Further evidence for viral-induced fusion pores was obtained by infecting neurons with a viral mutant defective for glycoprotein B, a component of the viral membrane fusion complex. These infected neurons were essentially identical to mock infected neurons: no increased AP firing, no spikelet-like events, and no electrical or dye transfer. Infection with PRV Bartha, an attenuated circuit-tracing strain delayed, but did not eliminate the increased neuronal activity and coupling events. We suggest that formation of fusion pores between infected neurons results in electrical coupling and elevated firing rates, and that these processes may contribute to the altered neural

  9. Oxidative stress alters physiological and morphological neuronal properties.

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    Hasan, Sonia M; Joe, Mary; Alshuaib, Waleed B

    2007-07-01

    We investigated the effects of H(2)O(2)-induced oxidative stress on the delayed-rectifier current (IK(DR)), neuronal physiological and morphological properties. Measurements were obtained from hippocampal CA1 neurons in control solution and from the same neurons after exposure to oxidative stress (short- and long-term H(2)O(2) external applications at 0.1, 1, and 10 mM). With short-term (6 min) H(2)O(2) (1 mM) treatment, IK(DR) measured in the H(2)O(2)-containing solution (778 +/- 23 pA, n=20), was smaller than that measured in the control Ca(2+)-free Hepes solution (1,112 +/- 38 pA, n=20). Coenzyme Q(10) (0.1 mM) pretreatment prevented the H(2)O(2)-induced inhibition of IK(DR). With long-term (40, 80 min) H(2)O(2) (0.1, 10 mM) treatment, the neuron lost its distinctive shape (rounded up) and the neurite almost disappeared. These results suggest that oxidative stress, which inhibits IK(DR), can alter neural activity. The morphological changes caused by H(2)O(2) support the idea that oxidative stress causes intracellular damage and compromises neural function.

  10. LTP Induction Modifies Functional Relationship among Hippocampal Neurons

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    Yun, Sung H.; Lee, Deok S.; Lee, Hyunjung; Baeg, Eun H.; Kim, Yun B.; Jung, Min W.

    2007-01-01

    To obtain evidence linking long-term potentiation (LTP) and memory, we examined whether LTP induction modifies functional relationship among neurons in the rat hippocampus. In contrast to neurons in low-frequency stimulated or AP5-treated slices, LTP induction altered "functional connectivity," as defined by the degree of synchronous firing, among…

  11. Aluminum modulates effects of beta amyloid(1-42) on neuronal calcium homeostasis and mitochondria functioning and is altered in a triple transgenic mouse model of Alzheimer's disease.

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    Drago, Denise; Cavaliere, Alessandra; Mascetra, Nicola; Ciavardelli, Domenico; di Ilio, Carmine; Zatta, Paolo; Sensi, Stefano L

    2008-10-01

    Recent findings suggest that beta-amyloid (A beta) is more neurotoxic when present in its oligomeric configuration rather than as monomers or fibrils. Previous work from our laboratories has shown that A beta aggregation is strongly influenced by the conjugation of the peptide with metal ions (aluminum A, copper [Cu], zinc [Zn], and iron [Fe]) that are found in high concentrations in the core of senile plaques. Disruption of Ca++ signaling and mitochondrial dysfunction are potent triggers of neuronal death and have been implicated in the neuronal loss that is associated with Alzheimer's disease (AD). In this study, we explored whether A beta-metal complexes can have detrimental effects on intraneuronal Ca++ ([Ca++]i) homeostasis and mitochondrial function in vitro. Results from our experiments indicate that, when conjugated with Al, A beta perturbs neuronal [Ca++]i homeostasis and inhibits mitochondrial respiration. Finally, we analyzed the content of the four metals in the brain of a triple transgenic animal model of AD and found that Al is the only one to be increased in the cortex of these mice.

  12. Complement Activation Alters Platelet Function

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    2015-12-01

    Award Number: W81XWH-12-1-0523 TITLE: Complement Activation Alters Platelet Function PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: George Tsokos, M.D. CONTRACTING...Activation Alters Platelet Function 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER 5b. GRANT NUMBER W81XWH-12-1-0523 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6. AUTHOR(S) George Tsokos, M.D...a decreased level of disease. Further studies will expand upon these observations better outlining the function of platelets in the injury associated

  13. Neurological and behavioral abnormalities, ventricular dilatation, altered cellular functions, inflammation, and neuronal injury in brains of mice due to common, persistent, parasitic infection

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    Hwang Jong-Hee

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Worldwide, approximately two billion people are chronically infected with Toxoplasma gondii with largely unknown consequences. Methods To better understand long-term effects and pathogenesis of this common, persistent brain infection, mice were infected at a time in human years equivalent to early to mid adulthood and studied 5–12 months later. Appearance, behavior, neurologic function and brain MRIs were studied. Additional analyses of pathogenesis included: correlation of brain weight and neurologic findings; histopathology focusing on brain regions; full genome microarrays; immunohistochemistry characterizing inflammatory cells; determination of presence of tachyzoites and bradyzoites; electron microscopy; and study of markers of inflammation in serum. Histopathology in genetically resistant mice and cytokine and NRAMP knockout mice, effects of inoculation of isolated parasites, and treatment with sulfadiazine or αPD1 ligand were studied. Results Twelve months after infection, a time equivalent to middle to early elderly ages, mice had behavioral and neurological deficits, and brain MRIs showed mild to moderate ventricular dilatation. Lower brain weight correlated with greater magnitude of neurologic abnormalities and inflammation. Full genome microarrays of brains reflected inflammation causing neuronal damage (Gfap, effects on host cell protein processing (ubiquitin ligase, synapse remodeling (Complement 1q, and also increased expression of PD-1L (a ligand that allows persistent LCMV brain infection and CD 36 (a fatty acid translocase and oxidized LDL receptor that mediates innate immune response to beta amyloid which is associated with pro-inflammation in Alzheimer's disease. Immunostaining detected no inflammation around intra-neuronal cysts, practically no free tachyzoites, and only rare bradyzoites. Nonetheless, there were perivascular, leptomeningeal inflammatory cells, particularly contiguous to the aqueduct of

  14. GABA FUNCTION IS ALTERED FOLLOWING DEVELOPMENTAL HYPOTHYROIDISM: NEUROANATOMICAL AND NEUROPHYSIOLOGICAL EVIDENCE.

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    Thyroid hormone deficiency during development produces changes in the structure of neurons and glial cells and alters synaptic function in the hippocampus. GABAergic interneurons comprise the bulk of local inhibitory neuronal circuitry and a subpopulation of these interneurons ...

  15. Glutamate alteration of glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD) in GABAergic neurons: the role of cysteine proteases.

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    Monnerie, Hubert; Le Roux, Peter D

    2008-09-01

    Brain cell vulnerability to neurologic insults varies greatly, depending on their neuronal subpopulation. Among cells that survive a pathological insult such as ischemia or brain trauma, some may undergo morphological and/or biochemical changes that could compromise brain function. We previously reported that surviving cortical GABAergic neurons exposed to glutamate in vitro displayed an NMDA receptor (NMDAR)-mediated alteration in the levels of the GABA synthesizing enzyme glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD65/67) [Monnerie, H., Le Roux, P., 2007. Reduced dendrite growth and altered glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD) 65- and 67-kDa isoform protein expression from mouse cortical GABAergic neurons following excitotoxic injury in vitro. Exp. Neurol. 205, 367-382]. In this study, we examined the mechanisms by which glutamate excitotoxicity caused a change in cortical GABAergic neurons' GAD protein levels. Removing extracellular calcium prevented the NMDAR-mediated decrease in GAD protein levels, measured using Western blot techniques, whereas inhibiting calcium entry through voltage-gated calcium channels had no effect. Glutamate's effect on GAD protein isoforms was significantly attenuated by preincubation with the cysteine protease inhibitor N-Acetyl-L-Leucyl-L-Leucyl-L-norleucinal (ALLN). Using class-specific protease inhibitors, we observed that ALLN's effect resulted from the blockade of calpain and cathepsin protease activities. Cell-free proteolysis assay confirmed that both proteases were involved in glutamate-induced alteration in GAD protein levels. Together these results suggest that glutamate-induced excitotoxic stimulation of NMDAR in cultured cortical neurons leads to altered GAD protein levels from GABAergic neurons through intracellular calcium increase and protease activation including calpain and cathepsin. Biochemical alterations in surviving cortical GABAergic neurons in various disease states may contribute to the altered balance between excitation

  16. Altered Astrocyte-Neuron Interactions and Epileptogenesis in Tuberous Sclerosis Complex Disorder

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    2014-06-01

    and in vivo (video-EEG). To directly compare glutamatergic and GABAergic synaptic transmission , excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) and...Epileptogenesis in non-tuber neural tissue in TS may thus arise by an imbalance of decreased inhibitory and increased excitatory synaptic transmission ... transmission . Astrocytes could also regulate neuronal excitability by glutamate uptake and other means that alter expression and function of synaptic

  17. Diabetic polyneuropathy, sensory neurons, nuclear structure and spliceosome alterations: a role for CWC22

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    Masaki Kobayashi

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Unique deficits in the function of adult sensory neurons as part of their early neurodegeneration might account for progressive polyneuropathy during chronic diabetes mellitus. Here, we provide structural and functional evidence for aberrant pre-mRNA splicing in a chronic type 1 model of experimental diabetic polyneuropathy (DPN. Cajal bodies (CBs, unique nuclear substructures involved in RNA splicing, increased in number in diabetic sensory neurons, but their expected colocalization with survival motor neuron (SMN proteins was reduced – a mislocalization described in motor neurons of spinal muscular atrophy. Small nuclear ribonucleoprotein particles (snRNPs, also participants in the spliceosome, had abnormal multiple nuclear foci unassociated with CBs, and their associated snRNAs were reduced. CWC22, a key spliceosome protein, was aberrantly upregulated in diabetic dorsal root ganglia (DRG, and impaired neuronal function. CWC22 attenuated sensory neuron plasticity, with knockdown in vitro enhancing their neurite outgrowth. Further, axonal delivery of CWC22 siRNA unilaterally to locally knock down the aberrant protein in diabetic nerves improved aspects of sensory function in diabetic mice. Collectively, our findings identify subtle but significant alterations in spliceosome structure and function, including dysregulated CBs and CWC22 overexpression, in diabetic sensory neurons that offer new ideas regarding diabetic sensory neurodegeneration in polyneuropathy.

  18. Diabetic polyneuropathy, sensory neurons, nuclear structure and spliceosome alterations: a role for CWC22

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    Kobayashi, Masaki; Chandrasekhar, Ambika; Cheng, Chu; Martinez, Jose A.; Ng, Hilarie; de la Hoz, Cristiane

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT Unique deficits in the function of adult sensory neurons as part of their early neurodegeneration might account for progressive polyneuropathy during chronic diabetes mellitus. Here, we provide structural and functional evidence for aberrant pre-mRNA splicing in a chronic type 1 model of experimental diabetic polyneuropathy (DPN). Cajal bodies (CBs), unique nuclear substructures involved in RNA splicing, increased in number in diabetic sensory neurons, but their expected colocalization with survival motor neuron (SMN) proteins was reduced – a mislocalization described in motor neurons of spinal muscular atrophy. Small nuclear ribonucleoprotein particles (snRNPs), also participants in the spliceosome, had abnormal multiple nuclear foci unassociated with CBs, and their associated snRNAs were reduced. CWC22, a key spliceosome protein, was aberrantly upregulated in diabetic dorsal root ganglia (DRG), and impaired neuronal function. CWC22 attenuated sensory neuron plasticity, with knockdown in vitro enhancing their neurite outgrowth. Further, axonal delivery of CWC22 siRNA unilaterally to locally knock down the aberrant protein in diabetic nerves improved aspects of sensory function in diabetic mice. Collectively, our findings identify subtle but significant alterations in spliceosome structure and function, including dysregulated CBs and CWC22 overexpression, in diabetic sensory neurons that offer new ideas regarding diabetic sensory neurodegeneration in polyneuropathy. PMID:28250049

  19. Diabetic polyneuropathy, sensory neurons, nuclear structure and spliceosome alterations: a role for CWC22.

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    Kobayashi, Masaki; Chandrasekhar, Ambika; Cheng, Chu; Martinez, Jose A; Ng, Hilarie; de la Hoz, Cristiane; Zochodne, Douglas W

    2017-03-01

    Unique deficits in the function of adult sensory neurons as part of their early neurodegeneration might account for progressive polyneuropathy during chronic diabetes mellitus. Here, we provide structural and functional evidence for aberrant pre-mRNA splicing in a chronic type 1 model of experimental diabetic polyneuropathy (DPN). Cajal bodies (CBs), unique nuclear substructures involved in RNA splicing, increased in number in diabetic sensory neurons, but their expected colocalization with survival motor neuron (SMN) proteins was reduced - a mislocalization described in motor neurons of spinal muscular atrophy. Small nuclear ribonucleoprotein particles (snRNPs), also participants in the spliceosome, had abnormal multiple nuclear foci unassociated with CBs, and their associated snRNAs were reduced. CWC22, a key spliceosome protein, was aberrantly upregulated in diabetic dorsal root ganglia (DRG), and impaired neuronal function. CWC22 attenuated sensory neuron plasticity, with knockdown in vitro enhancing their neurite outgrowth. Further, axonal delivery of CWC22 siRNA unilaterally to locally knock down the aberrant protein in diabetic nerves improved aspects of sensory function in diabetic mice. Collectively, our findings identify subtle but significant alterations in spliceosome structure and function, including dysregulated CBs and CWC22 overexpression, in diabetic sensory neurons that offer new ideas regarding diabetic sensory neurodegeneration in polyneuropathy.

  20. Chronic alterations in monoaminergic cells in the locus coeruleus in orexin neuron-ablated narcoleptic mice.

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    Natsuko Tsujino

    Full Text Available Narcolepsy patients often suffer from insomnia in addition to excessive daytime sleepiness. Narcoleptic animals also show behavioral instability characterized by frequent transitions between all vigilance states, exhibiting very short bouts of NREM sleep as well as wakefulness. The instability of wakefulness states in narcolepsy is thought to be due to deficiency of orexins, neuropeptides produced in the lateral hypothalamic neurons, which play a highly important role in maintaining wakefulness. However, the mechanism responsible for sleep instability in this disorder remains to be elucidated. Because firing of orexin neurons ceases during sleep in healthy animals, deficiency of orexins does not explain the abnormality of sleep. We hypothesized that chronic compensatory changes in the neurophysiologica activity of the locus coeruleus (LC and dorsal raphe (DR nucleus in response to the progressive loss of endogenous orexin tone underlie the pathological regulation of sleep/wake states. To evaluate this hypothesis, we examined firing patterns of serotonergic (5-HT neurons and noradrenergic (NA neurons in the brain stem, two important neuronal populations in the regulation of sleep/wakefulness states. We recorded single-unit activities of 5-HT neurons and NA neurons in the DR nucleus and LC of orexin neuron-ablated narcoleptic mice. We found that while the firing pattern of 5-HT neurons in narcoleptic mice was similar to that in wildtype mice, that of NA neurons was significantly different from that in wildtype mice. In narcoleptic mice, NA neurons showed a higher firing frequency during both wakefulness and NREM sleep as compared with wildtype mice. In vitro patch-clamp study of NA neurons of narcoleptic mice suggested a functional decrease of GABAergic input to these neurons. These alterations might play roles in the sleep abnormality in narcolepsy.

  1. A Functional 3'UTR Polymorphism (rs2235749) of Prodynorphin Alters microRNA-365 Binding in Ventral Striatonigral Neurons to Influence Novelty Seeking and Positive Reward Traits.

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    Egervari, Gabor; Jutras-Aswad, Didier; Landry, Joseph; Miller, Michael L; Anderson, Sarah Ann; Michaelides, Michael; Jacobs, Michelle M; Peter, Cyril; Yiannoulos, Georgia; Liu, Xun; Hurd, Yasmin L

    2016-09-01

    Genetic factors impact behavioral traits relevant to numerous psychiatric disorders and risk-taking behaviors, and different lines of evidence have indicated that discrete neurobiological systems contribute to such individual differences. In this study, we explored the relationship of genetic variants of the prodynorphin (PDYN) gene, which is enriched in the striatonigral/striatomesencephalic pathway, a key neuronal circuit implicated in positive 'Go' behavioral choice and action. Our multidisciplinary approach revealed that the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) rs2235749 (in high linkage disequilibrium with rs910080) modifies striatal PDYN expression via impaired binding of miR-365, a microRNA that targets the PDYN 3'-untranslated region (3'UTR), and is significantly associated to novelty- and reward-related behavioral traits in humans and translational animal models. Carriers of the rs2235749G allele exhibited increased levels of PDYN 3'UTR in vitro and had elevated mRNA expression in the medial nucleus accumbens shell (NAcSh) and caudate nucleus in postmortem human brains. There was an association of rs2235749 with novelty-seeking trait and a strong genotype-dose association with positive reinforcement behavior in control subjects, which differed in cannabis-dependent individuals. Using lentiviral miRZip-365 constructs selectively expressed in Pdyn-neurons of the NAcSh, we demonstrated that the Pdyn-miR365 interaction in the NAcSh directly influences novelty-seeking exploratory behavior and facilitates self-administration of natural reward. Overall, this translational study suggests that genetically determined miR-365-mediated epigenetic regulation of PDYN expression in mesolimbic striatonigral/striatomesencephalic circuits possibly contributes to novelty seeking and positive reinforcement traits.

  2. Mirror neurons: from origin to function.

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    Cook, Richard; Bird, Geoffrey; Catmur, Caroline; Press, Clare; Heyes, Cecilia

    2014-04-01

    This article argues that mirror neurons originate in sensorimotor associative learning and therefore a new approach is needed to investigate their functions. Mirror neurons were discovered about 20 years ago in the monkey brain, and there is now evidence that they are also present in the human brain. The intriguing feature of many mirror neurons is that they fire not only when the animal is performing an action, such as grasping an object using a power grip, but also when the animal passively observes a similar action performed by another agent. It is widely believed that mirror neurons are a genetic adaptation for action understanding; that they were designed by evolution to fulfill a specific socio-cognitive function. In contrast, we argue that mirror neurons are forged by domain-general processes of associative learning in the course of individual development, and, although they may have psychological functions, they do not necessarily have a specific evolutionary purpose or adaptive function. The evidence supporting this view shows that (1) mirror neurons do not consistently encode action "goals"; (2) the contingency- and context-sensitive nature of associative learning explains the full range of mirror neuron properties; (3) human infants receive enough sensorimotor experience to support associative learning of mirror neurons ("wealth of the stimulus"); and (4) mirror neurons can be changed in radical ways by sensorimotor training. The associative account implies that reliable information about the function of mirror neurons can be obtained only by research based on developmental history, system-level theory, and careful experimentation.

  3. Mirror neurons: functions, mechanisms and models.

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    Oztop, Erhan; Kawato, Mitsuo; Arbib, Michael A

    2013-04-12

    Mirror neurons for manipulation fire both when the animal manipulates an object in a specific way and when it sees another animal (or the experimenter) perform an action that is more or less similar. Such neurons were originally found in macaque monkeys, in the ventral premotor cortex, area F5 and later also in the inferior parietal lobule. Recent neuroimaging data indicate that the adult human brain is endowed with a "mirror neuron system," putatively containing mirror neurons and other neurons, for matching the observation and execution of actions. Mirror neurons may serve action recognition in monkeys as well as humans, whereas their putative role in imitation and language may be realized in human but not in monkey. This article shows the important role of computational models in providing sufficient and causal explanations for the observed phenomena involving mirror systems and the learning processes which form them, and underlines the need for additional circuitry to lift up the monkey mirror neuron circuit to sustain the posited cognitive functions attributed to the human mirror neuron system.

  4. SCYL pseudokinases in neuronal function and survival

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Stephane Pelletier

    2016-01-01

    The generation of mice lacking SCYL1 or SCYL2 and the identiifcation ofScyl1 as the causative gene in the motor neuron disease mouse model muscle deifcient (Scyl1mdf/mdf) demonstrated the importance of the SCY1-like family of protein pseudokinases in neuronal function and survival. Several essential cellular processes such as intracellular trafifcking and nuclear tRNA export are thought to be regulated by SCYL proteins. How-ever, whether deregulation of these processes contributes to the neurodegenerative processes associated with the loss of SCYL proteins is still unclear. Here, I brielfy review the evidence supporting that SCYL proteins play a role in these processes and discuss their possible involvement in the neuronal functions of SCYL pro-teins. I also propose ways to determine the importance of these pathways for the functions of SCYL proteins in vivo.

  5. Neurons with radial basis like rate functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kovács, Zsolt László

    2005-01-01

    Artificial neural networks constructed with "locally tuned processing units" and more generally referred to as "radial basis function networks" have been proposed by a number of workers. In this communication, I submit a conjecture, based on indirect experimental and direct computational evidence of the Hodgkin-Huxley model, that there may be biological neurons in nervous systems for which the rate function is locally tuned. If proved to be valid, this conjecture may simplify neurodynamic models of some functions of nervous systems.

  6. Activity and High-Order Effective Connectivity Alterations in Sanfilippo C Patient-Specific Neuronal Networks

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    Isaac Canals

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC technology has been successfully used to recapitulate phenotypic traits of several human diseases in vitro. Patient-specific iPSC-based disease models are also expected to reveal early functional phenotypes, although this remains to be proved. Here, we generated iPSC lines from two patients with Sanfilippo type C syndrome, a lysosomal storage disorder with inheritable progressive neurodegeneration. Mature neurons obtained from patient-specific iPSC lines recapitulated the main known phenotypes of the disease, not present in genetically corrected patient-specific iPSC-derived cultures. Moreover, neuronal networks organized in vitro from mature patient-derived neurons showed early defects in neuronal activity, network-wide degradation, and altered effective connectivity. Our findings establish the importance of iPSC-based technology to identify early functional phenotypes, which can in turn shed light on the pathological mechanisms occurring in Sanfilippo syndrome. This technology also has the potential to provide valuable readouts to screen compounds, which can prevent the onset of neurodegeneration.

  7. Activity and High-Order Effective Connectivity Alterations in Sanfilippo C Patient-Specific Neuronal Networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canals, Isaac; Soriano, Jordi; Orlandi, Javier G.; Torrent, Roger; Richaud-Patin, Yvonne; Jiménez-Delgado, Senda; Merlin, Simone; Follenzi, Antonia; Consiglio, Antonella; Vilageliu, Lluïsa; Grinberg, Daniel; Raya, Angel

    2015-01-01

    Summary Induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) technology has been successfully used to recapitulate phenotypic traits of several human diseases in vitro. Patient-specific iPSC-based disease models are also expected to reveal early functional phenotypes, although this remains to be proved. Here, we generated iPSC lines from two patients with Sanfilippo type C syndrome, a lysosomal storage disorder with inheritable progressive neurodegeneration. Mature neurons obtained from patient-specific iPSC lines recapitulated the main known phenotypes of the disease, not present in genetically corrected patient-specific iPSC-derived cultures. Moreover, neuronal networks organized in vitro from mature patient-derived neurons showed early defects in neuronal activity, network-wide degradation, and altered effective connectivity. Our findings establish the importance of iPSC-based technology to identify early functional phenotypes, which can in turn shed light on the pathological mechanisms occurring in Sanfilippo syndrome. This technology also has the potential to provide valuable readouts to screen compounds, which can prevent the onset of neurodegeneration. PMID:26411903

  8. Activity and High-Order Effective Connectivity Alterations in Sanfilippo C Patient-Specific Neuronal Networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canals, Isaac; Soriano, Jordi; Orlandi, Javier G; Torrent, Roger; Richaud-Patin, Yvonne; Jiménez-Delgado, Senda; Merlin, Simone; Follenzi, Antonia; Consiglio, Antonella; Vilageliu, Lluïsa; Grinberg, Daniel; Raya, Angel

    2015-10-13

    Induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) technology has been successfully used to recapitulate phenotypic traits of several human diseases in vitro. Patient-specific iPSC-based disease models are also expected to reveal early functional phenotypes, although this remains to be proved. Here, we generated iPSC lines from two patients with Sanfilippo type C syndrome, a lysosomal storage disorder with inheritable progressive neurodegeneration. Mature neurons obtained from patient-specific iPSC lines recapitulated the main known phenotypes of the disease, not present in genetically corrected patient-specific iPSC-derived cultures. Moreover, neuronal networks organized in vitro from mature patient-derived neurons showed early defects in neuronal activity, network-wide degradation, and altered effective connectivity. Our findings establish the importance of iPSC-based technology to identify early functional phenotypes, which can in turn shed light on the pathological mechanisms occurring in Sanfilippo syndrome. This technology also has the potential to provide valuable readouts to screen compounds, which can prevent the onset of neurodegeneration.

  9. Prenatal exposure to urban air nanoparticles in mice causes altered neuronal differentiation and depression-like responses.

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    David A Davis

    Full Text Available Emerging evidence suggests that excessive exposure to traffic-derived air pollution during pregnancy may increase the vulnerability to neurodevelopmental alterations that underlie a broad array of neuropsychiatric disorders. We present a mouse model for prenatal exposure to urban freeway nanoparticulate matter (nPM. In prior studies, we developed a model for adult rodent exposure to re-aerosolized urban nPM which caused inflammatory brain responses with altered neuronal glutamatergic functions. nPMs are collected continuously for one month from a local freeway and stored as an aqueous suspension, prior to re-aerosolization for exposure of mice under controlled dose and duration. This paradigm was used for a pilot study of prenatal nPM impact on neonatal neurons and adult behaviors. Adult C57BL/6J female mice were exposed to re-aerosolized nPM (350 µg/m(3 or control filtered ambient air for 10 weeks (3×5 hour exposures per week, encompassing gestation and oocyte maturation prior to mating. Prenatal nPM did not alter litter size, pup weight, or postnatal growth. Neonatal cerebral cortex neurons at 24 hours in vitro showed impaired differentiation, with 50% reduction of stage 3 neurons with long neurites and correspondingly more undifferentiated neurons at Stages 0 and 1. Neuron number after 24 hours of culture was not altered by prenatal nPM exposure. Addition of exogenous nPM (2 µg/ml to the cultures impaired pyramidal neuron Stage 3 differentiation by 60%. Adult males showed increased depression-like responses in the tail-suspension test, but not anxiety-related behaviors. These pilot data suggest that prenatal exposure to nPM can alter neuronal differentiation with gender-specific behavioral sequelae that may be relevant to human prenatal exposure to urban vehicular aerosols.

  10. Diminished A-type potassium current and altered firing properties in presympathetic PVN neurones in renovascular hypertensive rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sonner, Patrick M; Filosa, Jessica A; Stern, Javier E

    2008-03-15

    Accumulating evidence supports a contribution of the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus (PVN) to sympathoexcitation and elevated blood pressure in renovascular hypertension. However, the underlying mechanisms resulting in altered neuronal function in hypertensive rats remain largely unknown. Here, we aimed to address whether the transient outward potassium current (I(A)) in identified rostral ventrolateral medulla (RVLM)-projecting PVN neurones is altered in hypertensive rats, and whether such changes affected single and repetitive action potential properties and associated changes in intracellular Ca(2+) levels. Patch-clamp recordings obtained from PVN-RVLM neurons showed a reduction in I(A) current magnitude and single channel conductance, and an enhanced steady-state current inactivation in hypertensive rats. Morphometric reconstructions of intracellularly labelled PVN-RVLM neurons showed a diminished dendritic surface area in hypertensive rats. Consistent with a diminished I(A) availability, action potentials in PVN-RVLM neurons in hypertensive rats were broader, decayed more slowly, and were less sensitive to the K(+) channel blocker 4-aminopyridine. Simultaneous patch clamp recordings and confocal Ca(2+) imaging demonstrated enhanced action potential-evoked intracellular Ca(2+) transients in hypertensive rats. Finally, spike broadening during repetitive firing discharge was enhanced in PVN-RVLM neurons from hypertensive rats. Altogether, our results indicate that diminished I(A) availability constitutes a contributing mechanism underlying aberrant central neuronal function in renovascular hypertension.

  11. Corazonin neurons function in sexually dimorphic circuitry that shape behavioral responses to stress in Drosophila.

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    Yan Zhao

    Full Text Available All organisms are confronted with dynamic environmental changes that challenge homeostasis, which is the operational definition of stress. Stress produces adaptive behavioral and physiological responses, which, in the Metazoa, are mediated through the actions of various hormones. Based on its associated phenotypes and its expression profiles, a candidate stress hormone in Drosophila is the corazonin neuropeptide. We evaluated the potential roles of corazonin in mediating stress-related changes in target behaviors and physiologies through genetic alteration of corazonin neuronal excitability. Ablation of corazonin neurons confers resistance to metabolic, osmotic, and oxidative stress, as measured by survival. Silencing and activation of corazonin neurons lead to differential lifespan under stress, and these effects showed a strong dependence on sex. Additionally, altered corazonin neuron physiology leads to fundamental differences in locomotor activity, and these effects were also sex-dependent. The dynamics of altered locomotor behavior accompanying stress was likewise altered in flies with altered corazonin neuronal function. We report that corazonin transcript expression is altered under starvation and osmotic stress, and that triglyceride and dopamine levels are equally impacted in corazonin neuronal alterations and these phenotypes similarly show significant sexual dimorphisms. Notably, these sexual dimorphisms map to corazonin neurons. These results underscore the importance of central peptidergic processing within the context of stress and place corazonin signaling as a critical feature of neuroendocrine events that shape stress responses and may underlie the inherent sexual dimorphic differences in stress responses.

  12. Altered synaptic properties during integration of adult-born hippocampal neurons following a seizure insult.

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    Johanna Jackson

    Full Text Available Pathological conditions affect several stages of neurogenesis in the adult brain, including proliferation, survival, cell fate, migration, and functional integration. Here we explored how a pathological environment modulates the heterogeneous afferent synaptic input that shapes the functional properties of newly formed neurons. We analyzed the expression of adhesion molecules and other synaptic proteins on adult-born hippocampal neurons formed after electrically-induced partial status epilepticus (pSE. New cells were labeled with a GFP-retroviral vector one week after pSE. One and three weeks thereafter, synaptic proteins were present on dendritic spines and shafts, but without differences between pSE and control group. In contrast, at six weeks, we found fewer dendritic spines and decreased expression of the scaffolding protein PSD-95 on spines, without changes in expression of the adhesion molecules N-cadherin or neuroligin-1, primarily located at excitatory synapses. Moreover, we detected an increased expression of the inhibitory scaffolding protein gephyrin in newborn but not mature neurons after SE. However, this increase was not accompanied by a difference in GABA expression, and there was even a region-specific decrease in the adhesion molecule neuroligin-2 expression, both in newborn and mature neurons. Neuroligin-2 clusters co-localized with presynaptic cholecystokinin terminals, which were also reduced. The expression of neuroligin-4 and glycine receptor was unchanged. Increased postsynaptic clustering of gephyrin, without an accompanying increase in GABAergic input or neuroligin-2 and -4 expression, the latter important for clustering of GABA(A and glycine receptors, respectively, could imply an increased but altered inhibitory connectivity specific for newborn neurons. The changes were transient and expression of both gephyrin and NL-2 was normalized 3 months post-SE. Our findings indicate that seizure-induced brain pathology alters

  13. Estradiol selectively enhances auditory function in avian forebrain neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caras, Melissa L; O'Brien, Matthew; Brenowitz, Eliot A; Rubel, Edwin W

    2012-12-01

    Sex steroids modulate vertebrate sensory processing, but the impact of circulating hormone levels on forebrain function remains unclear. We tested the hypothesis that circulating sex steroids modulate single-unit responses in the avian telencephalic auditory nucleus, field L. We mimicked breeding or nonbreeding conditions by manipulating plasma 17β-estradiol levels in wild-caught female Gambel's white-crowned sparrows (Zonotrichia leucophrys gambelii). Extracellular responses of single neurons to tones and conspecific songs presented over a range of intensities revealed that estradiol selectively enhanced auditory function in cells that exhibited monotonic rate level functions to pure tones. In these cells, estradiol treatment increased spontaneous and maximum evoked firing rates, increased pure tone response strengths and sensitivity, and expanded the range of intensities over which conspecific song stimuli elicited significant responses. Estradiol did not significantly alter the sensitivity or dynamic ranges of cells that exhibited non-monotonic rate level functions. Notably, there was a robust correlation between plasma estradiol concentrations in individual birds and physiological response properties in monotonic, but not non-monotonic neurons. These findings demonstrate that functionally distinct classes of anatomically overlapping forebrain neurons are differentially regulated by sex steroid hormones in a dose-dependent manner.

  14. Learning alters theta amplitude, theta-gamma coupling and neuronal synchronization in inferotemporal cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicol Alister U

    2011-06-01

    which are correlated with behavioral performance. A network model which can reproduce these changes suggests that a key function of such learning-evoked alterations in theta and theta-nested gamma activity may be increased temporal desynchronization in neuronal firing leading to optimal timing of inputs to downstream neural networks potentiating their responses. In this way learning can produce potentiation in neural networks simply through altering the temporal pattern of their inputs.

  15. Maternal Dexamethasone Exposure Alters Synaptic Inputs to Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone Neurons in the Early Postnatal Rat

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    Wei Ling Lim

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Maternal dexamethasone (DEX; a glucocorticoid receptor agonist exposure delays pubertal onset and alters reproductive behaviour in the adult offspring. However, little is known whether maternal DEX exposure affects the offspring’s reproductive function by disrupting the gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH neuronal function in the brain. Therefore, this study determined the exposure of maternal DEX on the GnRH neuronal spine development and synaptic cluster inputs to GnRH neurons using transgenic rats expressing enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP under the control of GnRH promoter. Pregnant females were administered with DEX (0.1mg/kg or vehicle (VEH, water daily during gestation day 13-20. Confocal imaging was used to examine the spine density of EGFP-GnRH neurons by three-dimensional rendering and synaptic cluster inputs to EGFP-GnRH neurons by synapsin I immunohistochemistry on postnatal day 0 (P0 males. The spine morphology and number on GnRH neurons did not change between the P0 males following maternal DEX and VEH treatment. The number of synaptic clusters within the organum vasculosum of the lamina terminalis (OVLT was decreased by maternal DEX exposure in P0 males. Furthermore, the number and levels of synaptic cluster inputs in close apposition with GnRH neurons was decreased following maternal DEX exposure in the OVLT region of P0 males. In addition, the post synaptic marker molecule, post-synaptic density 95 was observed in GnRH neurons following both DEX and VEH treatment. These results suggest that maternal DEX exposure alters neural afferent inputs to GnRH neurons during early postnatal stage, which could lead to reproductive dysfunction during adulthood.

  16. [Functional alterations in the retina following a 10 Gy gamma irradiation localized in the eye].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bagot, J D; Courant, D; Court, L

    1980-11-17

    A single-eye irradiation of 10 Gy (0.8 Gy. min-1) induces impairments of the electrical responses of the rabbit retina in dark adaptation. These are associated with reversible alteration of the photoreceptors and the preganglionic neurons and a disturbance of all the mechanisms of adaptation. Possible relationships between these functional alterations and the effects of irradiation are discussed.

  17. Cadherins in neuronal morphogenesis and function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, Sachihiro C; Takeichi, Masatoshi

    2008-06-01

    Classic cadherins represent a family of calcium-dependent homophilic cell-cell adhesion molecules. They confer strong adhesiveness to animal cells when they are anchored to the actin cytoskeleton via their cytoplasmic binding partners, catenins. The cadherin/catenin adhesion system plays key roles in the morphogenesis and function of the vertebrate and invertebrate nervous systems. In early vertebrate development, cadherins are involved in multiple events of brain morphogenesis including the formation and maintenance of the neuroepithelium, neurite extension and migration of neuronal cells. In the invertebrate nervous system, classic cadherin-mediated cell-cell interaction plays important roles in wiring among neurons. For synaptogenesis, the cadherin/catenin system not only stabilizes cell-cell contacts at excitatory synapses but also assembles synaptic molecules at synaptic sites. Furthermore, this system is involved in synaptic plasticity. Recent studies on the role of individual cadherin subtypes at synapses indicate that individual cadherin subtypes play their own unique role to regulate synaptic activities.

  18. Maternal mobile phone exposure alters intrinsic electrophysiological properties of CA1 pyramidal neurons in rat offspring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Razavinasab, Moazamehosadat; Moazzami, Kasra; Shabani, Mohammad

    2016-06-01

    Some studies have shown that exposure to electromagnetic field (EMF) may result in structural damage to neurons. In this study, we have elucidated the alteration in the hippocampal function of offspring Wistar rats (n = 8 rats in each group) that were chronically exposed to mobile phones during their gestational period by applying behavioral, histological, and electrophysiological tests. Rats in the EMF group were exposed to 900 MHz pulsed-EMF irradiation for 6 h/day. Whole cell recordings in hippocampal pyramidal cells in the mobile phone groups did show a decrease in neuronal excitability. Mobile phone exposure was mostly associated with a decrease in the number of action potentials fired in spontaneous activity and in response to current injection in both male and female groups. There was an increase in the amplitude of the afterhyperpolarization (AHP) in mobile phone rats compared with the control. The results of the passive avoidance and Morris water maze assessment of learning and memory performance showed that phone exposure significantly altered learning acquisition and memory retention in male and female rats compared with the control rats. Light microscopy study of brain sections of the control and mobile phone-exposed rats showed normal morphology.Our results suggest that exposure to mobile phones adversely affects the cognitive performance of both female and male offspring rats using behavioral and electrophysiological techniques.

  19. Cyclic AMP stimulates neurite outgrowth of lamprey reticulospinal neurons without substantially altering their biophysical properties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pale, T; Frisch, E B; McClellan, A D

    2013-08-15

    Reticulospinal (RS) neurons are critical for initiation of locomotor behavior, and following spinal cord injury (SCI) in the lamprey, the axons of these neurons regenerate and restore locomotor behavior within a few weeks. For lamprey RS neurons in culture, experimental induction of calcium influx, either in the growth cone or cell body, is inhibitory for neurite outgrowth. Following SCI, these neurons partially downregulate calcium channel expression, which would be expected to reduce calcium influx and possibly provide supportive conditions for axonal regeneration. In the present study, it was tested whether activation of second messenger signaling pathways stimulates neurite outgrowth of lamprey RS neurons without altering their electrical properties (e.g. spike broadening) so as to possibly increase calcium influx and compromise axonal growth. First, activation of cAMP pathways with forskolin or dbcAMP stimulated neurite outgrowth of RS neurons in culture in a PKA-dependent manner, while activation of cGMP signaling pathways with dbcGMP inhibited outgrowth. Second, neurophysiological recordings from uninjured RS neurons in isolated lamprey brain-spinal cord preparations indicated that dbcAMP or dbcGMP did not significantly affect any of the measured electrical properties. In contrast, for uninjured RS neurons, forskolin increased action potential duration, which might have increased calcium influx, but did not significantly affect most other electrical properties. Importantly, for injured RS neurons during the period of axonal regeneration, forskolin did not significantly alter their electrical properties. Taken together, these results suggest that activation of cAMP signaling by dbcAMP stimulates neurite outgrowth, but does not alter the electrical properties of lamprey RS neurons in such a way that would be expected to induce calcium influx. In conclusion, our results suggest that activation of cAMP pathways alone, without compensation for possible

  20. Hyperexcitable neurons and altered non-neuronal cells in the compressed spinal ganglion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    LaMotte, Robert H; Ma, Chao

    2008-10-25

    The cell body or soma in the dosal root ganglion (DRG) is normally excitable and this excitability can increase and persist after an injury of peripheral sensory neurons. In a rat model of radicular pain, an intraforaminal implantation of a rod that chronically compressed the lumbar DRG ("CCD" model) resulted in neuronal somal hyperexcitability and spontaneous activity that was accompanied by hyperalgesia in the ipsilateral hind paw. By the 5th day after onset of CCD, there was a novel upregulation in neuronal expression of the chemokine, monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1 or CCL2) and also its receptor, CCR2. The neurons developed, in response to topically applied MCP-1, an excitatory response that they normally do not have. CCD also activated non-neuronal cells including, for example, the endothelial cells as evidenced by angiogenesis in the form of an increased number of capillaries in the DRG after 7 days. A working hypothesis is that the CCD induced changes in neurons and non-neuronal cells that may act together to promote the survival of the injured tissue. The release of ligands such as CCL2, in addition to possibly activating nociceptive neurons (maintaining the pain), may also act to preserve injured cells in the face of ischemia and hypoxia, for example, by promoting angiogenesis. Thus, somal hyperexcitability, as often said of inflammation, may represent a double edged sword.

  1. Hyperexcitable neurons and altered non-neuronal cells in the compressed spinal ganglion

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Robert H. LaMotte; Chao MA

    2008-01-01

    The cell body or soma in the dosal root ganglion (DRG) is normally excitable and this excitability can increase and persist after an injury of peripheral sensory neurons. In a rat model of radicular pain, an intraforaminal implantation of a rod that chronically compressed the lumbar DRG ("CCD" model) resulted in neuronal somal hyperexcitability and spontaneous activity that was accom-panied by hyperalgesia in the ipsilateral hind paw. By the 5th day after onset of CCD, there was a novel upregulation in neuronal expression of the chemokine, monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP- 1 or CCL2) and also its receptor, CCR2. The neurons developed, in response to topically applied MCP-1, an excitatory response that they normally do not have. CCD also activated non-neuronal cells including, for example, the endothelial cells as evidenced by angiogenesis in the form of an increased number of capillaries in the DRG after 7 days. A working hypothesis is that the CCD induced changes in neurons and non-neuronal cells that may act together to promote the survival of the injured tissue. The release of ligands such as CCL2, in addition to possibly activating nociceptive neurons (maintaining the pain), may also act to preserve injured cells in the face of ischemia and hypoxia, for example, by promoting angiogenesis. Thus, somal hyperexcitability, as often said of inflammation, may represent a double edged sword.

  2. Pharmacogenetic modulation of orexin neurons alters sleep/wakefulness states in mice.

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    Koh Sasaki

    Full Text Available Hypothalamic neurons expressing neuropeptide orexins are critically involved in the control of sleep and wakefulness. Although the activity of orexin neurons is thought to be influenced by various neuronal input as well as humoral factors, the direct consequences of changes in the activity of these neurons in an intact animal are largely unknown. We therefore examined the effects of orexin neuron-specific pharmacogenetic modulation in vivo by a new method called the Designer Receptors Exclusively Activated by Designer Drugs approach (DREADD. Using this system, we successfully activated and suppressed orexin neurons as measured by Fos staining. EEG and EMG recordings suggested that excitation of orexin neurons significantly increased the amount of time spent in wakefulness and decreased both non-rapid eye movement (NREM and rapid eye movement (REM sleep times. Inhibition of orexin neurons decreased wakefulness time and increased NREM sleep time. These findings clearly show that changes in the activity of orexin neurons can alter the behavioral state of animals and also validate this novel approach for manipulating neuronal activity in awake, freely-moving animals.

  3. Toxic effects of lead on neuronal development and function

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    Freedman, R. (Denver Veterans Administration Medical Center, CO (USA)); Olson, L. (Univ. of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Denver (USA)); Hoffer, B.J. (Karolinska Institute, Stockholm (Sweden))

    1990-11-01

    The effects of lead on the development of the nervous system are of immediate concern to human health. While it is clear that lead can affect neuronal development at levels of exposure within the range found in the environment, the particular mechanism of the disruption is not readily ascertained. The goal of the authors research is to develop a model system in which the effects of lead on central nervous system development can be demonstrated. To study neuronal development in a system that minimizes such difficulties, the authors have grafted discrete brain regions derived from rat fetuses into the anterior chamber of the eye of adult hosts. The brain pieces continue organotypic development in the eye, but are isolated from possible secondary changes due to alterations in the development of the endocrine and other somatic systems because the adult host has these systems already fully developed. Using this system, they have discovered that lead induces a hypernoradrenergic innervation of central nervous system tissue. The increased innervation is observed not only structurally, but also functionally. Since norepinephrine is an inhibitory neurotransmitter, this ingrowth may explain the profound slowing of discharge of cerebellar neurons recorded in grafts of lead-treated animals. Studies in other tissues suggest that increased axonal ingrowth may be a general problem of lead intoxication that encompasses many brain areas, as well as peripheral sympathetic systems.

  4. The origin and function of mirror neurons: the missing link.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lingnau, Angelika; Caramazza, Alfonso

    2014-04-01

    We argue, by analogy to the neural organization of the object recognition system, that demonstration of modulation of mirror neurons by associative learning does not imply absence of genetic adaptation. Innate connectivity defines the types of processes mirror neurons can participate in while allowing for extensive local plasticity. However, the proper function of these neurons remains to be worked out.

  5. Dopamine neurons share common response function for reward prediction error.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eshel, Neir; Tian, Ju; Bukwich, Michael; Uchida, Naoshige

    2016-03-01

    Dopamine neurons are thought to signal reward prediction error, or the difference between actual and predicted reward. How dopamine neurons jointly encode this information, however, remains unclear. One possibility is that different neurons specialize in different aspects of prediction error; another is that each neuron calculates prediction error in the same way. We recorded from optogenetically identified dopamine neurons in the lateral ventral tegmental area (VTA) while mice performed classical conditioning tasks. Our tasks allowed us to determine the full prediction error functions of dopamine neurons and compare them to each other. We found marked homogeneity among individual dopamine neurons: their responses to both unexpected and expected rewards followed the same function, just scaled up or down. As a result, we were able to describe both individual and population responses using just two parameters. Such uniformity ensures robust information coding, allowing each dopamine neuron to contribute fully to the prediction error signal.

  6. Neuronal networks and mediators of cortical neurovascular coupling responses in normal and altered brain states.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lecrux, C; Hamel, E

    2016-10-05

    Brain imaging techniques that use vascular signals to map changes in neuronal activity, such as blood oxygenation level-dependent functional magnetic resonance imaging, rely on the spatial and temporal coupling between changes in neurophysiology and haemodynamics, known as 'neurovascular coupling (NVC)'. Accordingly, NVC responses, mapped by changes in brain haemodynamics, have been validated for different stimuli under physiological conditions. In the cerebral cortex, the networks of excitatory pyramidal cells and inhibitory interneurons generating the changes in neural activity and the key mediators that signal to the vascular unit have been identified for some incoming afferent pathways. The neural circuits recruited by whisker glutamatergic-, basal forebrain cholinergic- or locus coeruleus noradrenergic pathway stimulation were found to be highly specific and discriminative, particularly when comparing the two modulatory systems to the sensory response. However, it is largely unknown whether or not NVC is still reliable when brain states are altered or in disease conditions. This lack of knowledge is surprising since brain imaging is broadly used in humans and, ultimately, in conditions that deviate from baseline brain function. Using the whisker-to-barrel pathway as a model of NVC, we can interrogate the reliability of NVC under enhanced cholinergic or noradrenergic modulation of cortical circuits that alters brain states.This article is part of the themed issue 'Interpreting BOLD: a dialogue between cognitive and cellular neuroscience'.

  7. Diabetic rat testes: morphological and functional alterations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ricci, G; Catizone, A; Esposito, R; Pisanti, F A; Vietri, M T; Galdieri, M

    2009-12-01

    Reproductive dysfunction is a consequence of diabetes, but the underlying mechanisms are poorly understood. This study investigated the histological and molecular alterations in the testes of rats injected with streptozotocin at prepuperal (SPI rats) and adult age (SAI rats) to understand whether diabetes affects testicular tissue with different severity depending on the age in which this pathological condition starts. The testes of diabetic animals showed frequent abnormal histology, and seminiferous epithelium cytoarchitecture appeared altered as well as the occludin distribution pattern. The early occurrence of diabetes increased the percentage of animals with high number of damaged tubules. The interstitial compartment of the testes was clearly hypertrophic in several portions of the organs both in SPI and SAI rats. Interestingly, fully developed Leydig cells were present in all the treated animals although abnormally distributed. Besides the above-described damages, we found a similar decrease in plasma testosterone levels both in SPI and SAI rats. Oxidative stress (OS) is involved in the pathogenesis of various diabetic complications, and in our experimental models we found that manganese superoxide dismutase was reduced in diabetic animals. We conclude that in STZ-induced diabetes, the altered spermatogenesis, more severe in SPI animals, is possibly due to the effect of OS on Leydig cell function which could cause the testosterone decrease responsible for the alterations found in the seminiferous epithelium of diabetic animals.

  8. Developmental alterations in motor coordination and medium spiny neuron markers in mice lacking pgc-1α.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth K Lucas

    Full Text Available Accumulating evidence implicates the transcriptional coactivator peroxisome proliferator activated receptor γ coactivator 1α (PGC-1α in the pathophysiology of Huntington Disease (HD. Adult PGC-1α (-/- mice exhibit striatal neurodegeneration, and reductions in the expression of PGC-1α have been observed in striatum and muscle of HD patients as well as in animal models of the disease. However, it is unknown whether decreased expression of PGC-1α alone is sufficient to lead to the motor phenotype and striatal pathology characteristic of HD. For the first time, we show that young PGC-1α (-/- mice exhibit severe rotarod deficits, decreased rearing behavior, and increased occurrence of tremor in addition to the previously described hindlimb clasping. Motor impairment and striatal vacuolation are apparent in PGC-1α (-/- mice by four weeks of age and do not improve or decline by twelve weeks of age. The behavioral and pathological phenotype of PGC-1α (-/- mice can be completely recapitulated by conditional nervous system deletion of PGC-1α, indicating that peripheral effects are not responsible for the observed abnormalities. Evaluation of the transcriptional profile of PGC-1α (-/- striatal neuron populations and comparison to striatal neuron profiles of R6/2 HD mice revealed that PGC-1α deficiency alone is not sufficient to cause the transcriptional changes observed in this HD mouse model. In contrast to R6/2 HD mice, PGC-1α (-/- mice show increases in the expression of medium spiny neuron (MSN markers with age, suggesting that the observed behavioral and structural abnormalities are not primarily due to MSN loss, the defining pathological feature of HD. These results indicate that PGC-1α is required for the proper development of motor circuitry and transcriptional homeostasis in MSNs and that developmental disruption of PGC-1α leads to long-term alterations in motor functioning.

  9. The Alteration of Neonatal Raphe Neurons by Prenatal-Perinatal Nicotine. Meaning for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerpa, Verónica J; Aylwin, María de la Luz O; Beltrán-Castillo, Sebastián; Bravo, Eduardo U; Llona, Isabel R; Richerson, George B; Eugenín, Jaime L

    2015-10-01

    Nicotine may link maternal cigarette smoking with respiratory dysfunctions in sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Prenatal-perinatal nicotine exposure blunts ventilatory responses to hypercapnia and reduces central respiratory chemoreception in mouse neonates at Postnatal Days 0 (P0) to P3. This suggests that raphe neurons, which are altered in SIDS and contribute to central respiratory chemoreception, may be affected by nicotine. We therefore investigated whether prenatal-perinatal nicotine exposure affects the activity, electrical properties, and chemosensitivity of raphe obscurus (ROb) neurons in mouse neonates. Osmotic minipumps, implanted subcutaneously in 5- to 7-day-pregnant CF1 mice, delivered nicotine bitartrate (60 mg kg(-1) d(-1)) or saline (control) for up to 28 days. In neonates, ventilation was recorded by head-out plethysmography, c-Fos (neuronal activity marker), or serotonin autoreceptors (5HT1AR) were immunodetected using light microscopy, and patch-clamp recordings were made from raphe neurons in brainstem slices under normocarbia and hypercarbia. Prenatal-perinatal nicotine exposure decreased the hypercarbia-induced ventilatory responses at P1-P5, reduced both the number of c-Fos-positive ROb neurons during eucapnic normoxia at P1-P3 and their hypercapnia-induced recruitment at P3, increased 5HT1AR immunolabeling of ROb neurons at P3-P5, and reduced the spontaneous firing frequency of ROb neurons at P3 without affecting their CO2 sensitivity or their passive and active electrical properties. These findings reveal that prenatal-perinatal nicotine reduces the activity of neonatal ROb neurons, likely as a consequence of increased expression of 5HT1ARs. This hypoactivity may change the functional state of the respiratory neural network leading to breathing vulnerability and chemosensory failure as seen in SIDS.

  10. When "altering brain function" becomes "mind control".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koivuniemi, Andrew; Otto, Kevin

    2014-01-01

    Functional neurosurgery has seen a resurgence of interest in surgical treatments for psychiatric illness. Deep brain stimulation (DBS) technology is the preferred tool in the current wave of clinical experiments because it allows clinicians to directly alter the functions of targeted brain regions, in a reversible manner, with the intent of correcting diseases of the mind, such as depression, addiction, anorexia nervosa, dementia, and obsessive compulsive disorder. These promising treatments raise a critical philosophical and humanitarian question. "Under what conditions does 'altering brain function' qualify as 'mind control'?" In order to answer this question one needs a definition of mind control. To this end, we reviewed the relevant philosophical, ethical, and neurosurgical literature in order to create a set of criteria for what constitutes mind control in the context of DBS. We also outline clinical implications of these criteria. Finally, we demonstrate the relevance of the proposed criteria by focusing especially on serendipitous treatments involving DBS, i.e., cases in which an unintended therapeutic benefit occurred. These cases highlight the importance of gaining the consent of the subject for the new therapy in order to avoid committing an act of mind control.

  11. Feminization and alteration of Drosophila taste neurons induce reciprocal effects on male avoidance behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lacaille, Fabien; Everaerts, Claude; Ferveur, Jean-François

    2009-09-01

    Taste perception allows most animals to find edible food, potential mates, and avoid ingesting toxic molecules. Intriguingly, a small group of Drosophila taste neurones (expressing Gr66a-Gal4) involved in the perception of bitter substances is also used to detect 7-tricosene (7-T), a male cuticular pheromone. Male flies tend to be inhibited by 7-T whereas females are stimulated by this pheromone. To better understand their role on male courtship, Gr66a-Gal4 neurons were genetically feminized or altered with various transgenes, and the response of transgenic males was measured toward live targets carrying various amounts of 7-T, or of bitter molecules (caffeine, quinine and berberine). Surprisingly, tester males with feminized taste neurons showed an increased dose-dependent avoidance toward targets with high level of any of these substances, compared to other tester males. Conversely, males with altered neurons showed no, or very little avoidance. Moreover, the surgical ablation of the sensory appendages carrying these taste neurons differently affected the behavioral response of the various tester males. The fact that this manipulation did not affect the courtship toward control females nor the locomotor activity of tester males suggests that Gr66a-Gal4 neurons are involved in the sex-specific perception of molecules inducing male avoidance behavior.

  12. When Altering Brain Function Becomes Mind Control

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew Sanford Koivuniemi

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Functional neurosurgery has seen a resurgence of interest in surgical treatments for psychiatric illness. Deep brain stimulation (DBS technology is the preferred tool in the current wave of clinical experiments because it allows clinicians to directly alter the functions of targeted brain regions, in a reversible manner, with the intent of correcting diseases of the mind, such as depression, addiction, anorexia nervosa, dementia, and obsessive compulsive disorder. These promising treatments raise a critical philosophical and humanitarian question. Under what conditions does ‘altering brain function’ qualify as ‘mind control’? In order to answer this question one needs a definition of mind control. To this end, we reviewed the relevant philosophical, ethical, and neurosurgical literature in order to create a set of criteria for what constitutes mind control in the context of DBS. We also outline clinical implications of these criteria. Finally, we demonstrate the relevance of the proposed criteria by focusing especially on serendipitous treatments involving DBS, i.e., cases in which an unintended therapeutic benefit occurred. These cases highlight the importance of gaining the consent of the subject for the new therapy in order to avoid committing an act of mind control.

  13. Cytoskeleton Molecular Motors: Structures and Their Functions in Neuron.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, Qingpin; Hu, Xiaohui; Wei, Zhiyi; Tam, Kin Yip

    2016-01-01

    Cells make use of molecular motors to transport small molecules, macromolecules and cellular organelles to target region to execute biological functions, which is utmost important for polarized cells, such as neurons. In particular, cytoskeleton motors play fundamental roles in neuron polarization, extension, shape and neurotransmission. Cytoskeleton motors comprise of myosin, kinesin and cytoplasmic dynein. F-actin filaments act as myosin track, while kinesin and cytoplasmic dynein move on microtubules. Cytoskeleton motors work together to build a highly polarized and regulated system in neuronal cells via different molecular mechanisms and functional regulations. This review discusses the structures and working mechanisms of the cytoskeleton motors in neurons.

  14. Altered biometal homeostasis is associated with CLN6 mRNA loss in mouse neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katja M. Kanninen

    2013-05-01

    Neuronal ceroid lipofuscinoses, the most common fatal childhood neurodegenerative illnesses, share many features with more prevalent neurodegenerative diseases. Neuronal ceroid lipofuscinoses are caused by mutations in CLN genes. CLN6 encodes a transmembrane endoplasmic reticulum protein with no known function. We characterized the behavioural phenotype of spontaneous mutant mice modeling CLN6 disease, and demonstrate progressive motor and visual decline and reduced lifespan in these mice, consistent with symptoms observed in neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis patients. Alterations to biometal homeostasis are known to play a critical role in pathology in Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, Huntington's and motor neuron diseases. We have previously shown accumulation of the biometals, zinc, copper, manganese and cobalt, in CLN6 Merino and South Hampshire sheep at the age of symptom onset. Here we determine the physiological and disease-associated expression of CLN6, demonstrating regional CLN6 transcript loss, and concurrent accumulation of the same biometals in the CNS and the heart of presymptomatic CLN6 mice. Furthermore, increased expression of the ER/Golgi-localized cation transporter protein, Zip7, was detected in cerebellar Purkinje cells and whole brain fractions. Purkinje cells not only control motor function, an early symptomatic change in the CLN6 mice, but also display prominent neuropathological changes in mouse models and patients with different forms of neuronal ceroid lipofuscinoses. Whole brain fractionation analysis revealed biometal accumulation in fractions expressing markers for ER, Golgi, endosomes and lysosomes of CLN6 brains. These data are consistent with a link between CLN6 expression and biometal homeostasis in CLN6 disease, and provide further support for altered cation transporter regulation as a key factor in neurodegeneration.

  15. Distinctive transcriptome alterations of prefrontal pyramidal neurons in schizophrenia and schizoaffective disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arion, Dominique; Corradi, John P.; Tang, Shaowu; Datta, Dibyadeep; Boothe, Franklyn; He, Aiqing; Cacace, Angela M.; Zaczek, Robert; Albright, Charles F.; Tseng, George; Lewis, David A.

    2014-01-01

    Schizophrenia is associated with alterations in working memory that reflect dysfunction of dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) circuitry. Working memory depends on the activity of excitatory pyramidal cells in DLPFC layer 3, and to a lesser extent in layer 5. Although many studies have profiled gene expression in DLPFC gray matter in schizophrenia, little is known about cell type-specific transcript expression in these two populations of pyramidal cells. We hypothesized that interrogating gene expression specifically in DLPFC layer 3 or 5 pyramidal cells would reveal new and/or more robust schizophrenia-associated differences that would provide new insights into the nature of pyramidal cell dysfunction in the illness. We also sought to determine the impact of other variables, such as a diagnosis of schizoaffective disorder or medication use at time of death, on the patterns of gene expression in pyramidal neurons. Individual pyramidal cells in DLPFC layers 3 or 5 were captured by laser microdissection from 36 subjects with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder and matched normal comparison subjects. The mRNA from cell collections was subjected to transcriptome profiling by microarray followed by qPCR validation. Expression of genes involved in mitochondrial (MT) or ubiquitin-proteasome system (UPS) functions were markedly down-regulated in the patient group (p values for MT-related and UPS-related pathways were <10−7 and <10−5 respectively). MT-related gene alterations were more prominent in layer 3 pyramidal cells, whereas UPS-related gene alterations were more prominent in layer 5 pyramidal cells. Many of these alterations were not present, or found to a lesser degree, in samples of DLPFC gray matter from the same subjects, suggesting that they are pyramidal cell-specific. Furthermore, these findings principally reflected alterations in the schizophrenia subjects, were not present or present to a lesser degree in the schizoaffective disorder subjects

  16. BACE1 deficiency causes altered neuronal activity and neurodegeneration

    OpenAIRE

    Hu, Xiangyou; Zhou, Xiangdong; He, Wanxia; Yang, Jun; Xiong, Wenchen; Wong, Philip; Wilson, Christopher G.; Yan, Riqiang

    2010-01-01

    BACE1 is required for the release of β–amyloid (Aβ) in vivo, and inhibition of BACE1 activity is targeted for reducing Aβ generation in Alzheimer's patients. In order to further our understanding of the safe use of BACE1 inhibitors in human patients, we aimed to study the physiological functions of BACE1 by characterizing BACE1–null mice. Here we report the finding of spontaneous behavioral seizures in BACE1–null mice. Electroencephalographic recordings revealed abnormal spike-wave discharges...

  17. Microglia Dictate the Impact of Saturated Fat Consumption on Hypothalamic Inflammation and Neuronal Function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Valdearcos

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Diets rich in saturated fat produce inflammation, gliosis, and neuronal stress in the mediobasal hypothalamus (MBH. Here, we show that microglia mediate this process and its functional impact. Although microglia and astrocytes accumulate in the MBH of mice fed a diet rich in saturated fatty acids (SFAs, only the microglia undergo inflammatory activation, along with a buildup of hypothalamic SFAs. Enteric gavage specifically with SFAs reproduces microglial activation and neuronal stress in the MBH, and SFA treatment activates murine microglia, but not astrocytes, in culture. Moreover, depleting microglia abrogates SFA-induced inflammation in hypothalamic slices. Remarkably, depleting microglia from the MBH of mice abolishes inflammation and neuronal stress induced by excess SFA consumption, and in this context, microglial depletion enhances leptin signaling and reduces food intake. We thus show that microglia sense SFAs and orchestrate an inflammatory process in the MBH that alters neuronal function when SFA consumption is high.

  18. Rett syndrome induced pluripotent stem cell-derived neurons reveal novel neurophysiological alterations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farra, N; Zhang, W-B; Pasceri, P; Eubanks, J H; Salter, M W; Ellis, J

    2012-12-01

    Rett syndrome (RTT) is a neurodevelopmental autism spectrum disorder caused by mutations in the methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2) gene. Here, we describe the first characterization and neuronal differentiation of induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells derived from Mecp2-deficient mice. Fully reprogrammed wild-type (WT) and heterozygous female iPS cells express endogenous pluripotency markers, reactivate the X-chromosome and differentiate into the three germ layers. We directed iPS cells to produce glutamatergic neurons, which generated action potentials and formed functional excitatory synapses. iPS cell-derived neurons from heterozygous Mecp2(308) mice showed defects in the generation of evoked action potentials and glutamatergic synaptic transmission, as previously reported in brain slices. Further, we examined electrophysiology features not yet studied with the RTT iPS cell system and discovered that MeCP2-deficient neurons fired fewer action potentials, and displayed decreased action potential amplitude, diminished peak inward currents and higher input resistance relative to WT iPS-derived neurons. Deficiencies in action potential firing and inward currents suggest that disturbed Na(+) channel function may contribute to the dysfunctional RTT neuronal network. These phenotypes were additionally confirmed in neurons derived from independent WT and hemizygous mutant iPS cell lines, indicating that these reproducible deficits are attributable to MeCP2 deficiency. Taken together, these results demonstrate that neuronally differentiated MeCP2-deficient iPS cells recapitulate deficits observed previously in primary neurons, and these identified phenotypes further illustrate the requirement of MeCP2 in neuronal development and/or in the maintenance of normal function. By validating the use of iPS cells to delineate mechanisms underlying RTT pathogenesis, we identify deficiencies that can be targeted for in vitro translational screens.

  19. Altered speeds and trajectories of neurons migrating in the ventricular and subventricular zones of the reeler neocortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Britto, Joanne M; Tait, Karen J; Johnston, Leigh A; Hammond, Vicki E; Kalloniatis, Michael; Tan, Seong-Seng

    2011-05-01

    The Reelin signaling pathway is essential for proper cortical development, but it is unclear to whether Reelin function is primarily important for cortical layering or neuron migration. It has been proposed that Reelin is perhaps required only for somal translocation but not glial-dependent locomotion. This implies that the location of neurons responding to Reelin is restricted to the outer regions of the cortical plate (CP). To determine whether Reelin is required for migration outside of the CP, we used time-lapse imaging to track the behavior of cells undergoing locomotion in the germinal zones. We focused on the migratory activity in the ventricular/subventricular zones where the first transition of bipolar to multipolar migration occurs and where functional Reelin receptors are known to be expressed. Despite Reelin loss, neurons had no difficulty in undergoing radial migration and indeed displayed greater migratory speed. Additionally, compared with the wild-type, reeler neurons displayed altered trajectories with greater deviation from a radial path. These results suggest that Reelin loss has early consequences for migration in the germinal zones that are portrayed as defective radial trajectories and migratory speeds. Together, these abnormalities can give rise to the increased cell dispersion observed in the reeler cortex.

  20. Mitochondrial DNA Alterations and Reduced Mitochondrial Function in Aging

    OpenAIRE

    Hebert, Sadie L.; Lanza, Ian R.; Nair, K. Sreekumaran

    2010-01-01

    Oxidative damage to mitochondrial DNA increases with aging. This damage has the potential to affect mitochondrial DNA replication and transcription which could alter the abundance or functionality of mitochondrial proteins. This review describes mitochondrial DNA alterations and changes in mitochondrial function that occur with aging. Age-related alterations in mitochondrial DNA as a possible contributor to the reduction in mitochondrial function are discussed.

  1. Alterations in Neuronal Activity in Basal Ganglia-Thalamocortical Circuits in the Parkinsonian State

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adriana eGalvan

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available In patients with Parkinson’s disease and in animal models of this disorder, neurons in the basal ganglia and related regions in thalamus and cortex show changes that can be recorded by using electrophysiologic single-cell recording techniques, including altered firing rates and patterns, pathologic oscillatory activity and increased inter-neuronal synchronization. In addition, changes in synaptic potentials or in the joint spiking activities of populations of neurons can be monitored as alterations in local field potentials, electroencephalograms or electrocorticograms. Most of the mentioned electrophysiologic changes are probably related to the degeneration of diencephalic dopaminergic neurons, leading to dopamine loss in the striatum and other basal ganglia nuclei, although degeneration of non-dopaminergic cell groups may also have a role. The altered electrical activity of the basal ganglia and associated nuclei may contribute to some of the motor signs of the disease. We here review the current knowledge of the electrophysiologic changes at the single cell level, the level of local populations of neural elements, and the level of the entire basal ganglia-thalamocortical network in parkinsonism, and discuss the possible use of this information to optimize treatment approaches to Parkinson’s disease, such as deep brain stimulation therapy.

  2. Altered thalamic functional connectivity in multiple sclerosis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, Yaou; Liang, Peipeng; Duan, Yunyun; Huang, Jing; Ren, Zhuoqiong; Jia, Xiuqin [Department of Radiology, Xuanwu Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing 100053 (China); Dong, Huiqing; Ye, Jing [Department of Neurology, Xuanwu Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing 100053 (China); Shi, Fu-Dong [Department of Neurology and Tianjin Neurological Institute, Tianjin Medical University General Hospital, Tianjin 300052 (China); Butzkueven, Helmut [Department of Medicine, University of Melbourne, Parkville 3010 (Australia); Li, Kuncheng, E-mail: kunchengli55@gmail.com [Department of Radiology, Xuanwu Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing 100053 (China)

    2015-04-15

    Highlights: •We demonstrated decreased connectivity between thalamus and cortical regions in MS. •Increased intra- and inter-thalamic connectivity was also observed in MS. •The increased functional connectivity is attenuated by increasing disease duration. -- Abstract: Objective: To compare thalamic functional connectivity (FC) in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) and healthy controls (HC), and correlate these connectivity measures with other MRI and clinical variables. Methods: We employed resting-state functional MRI (fMRI) to examine changes in thalamic connectivity by comparing thirty-five patients with MS and 35 age- and sex-matched HC. Thalamic FC was investigated by correlating low frequency fMRI signal fluctuations in thalamic voxels with voxels in all other brain regions. Additionally thalamic volume fraction (TF), T2 lesion volume (T2LV), EDSS and disease duration were recorded and correlated with the FC changes. Results: MS patients were found to have a significantly lower TF than HC in bilateral thalami. Compared to HC, the MS group showed significantly decreased FC between thalamus and several brain regions including right middle frontal and parahippocampal gyri, and the left inferior parietal lobule. Increased intra- and inter-thalamic FC was observed in the MS group compared to HC. These FC alterations were not correlated with T2LV, thalamic volume or lesions. In the MS group, however, there was a negative correlation between disease duration and inter-thalamic connectivity (r = −0.59, p < 0.001). Conclusion: We demonstrated decreased FC between thalamus and several cortical regions, while increased intra- and inter-thalamic connectivity in MS patients. These complex functional changes reflect impairments and/or adaptations that are independent of T2LV, thalamic volume or presence of thalamic lesions. The negative correlation between disease duration and inter-thalamic connectivity could indicate an adaptive role of thalamus that is

  3. Neuromorphological and wiring pattern alterations effects on brain function: a mixed experimental and computational approach.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Linus Manubens-Gil

    2015-04-01

    In addition, the study of fixed intact brains (by means of the state of the art CLARITY technique brings us closer to biologically and medically relevant situations, allowing not only to confirm whether the functional links in neuronal cultures are also present in vivo, but also enabling the introduction of functional information (like behavioral studies and functional imaging and another layer of structural alterations such as brain region morphology, neuronal density, and long-range connectivity. Taking together the experimental information from these systems we want to feed self-developed computational models that allow us to understand what are the fundamental characteristics of the observed connectivity patterns and the impact of each of the alterations on neuronal network function. These models will also provide a framework able to account for the emergent properties that bridge the gap between spontaneous electrical activity arousal/transmission and higher order information processing and memory storage capacities in the brain. As an additional part of the project we are now working on the application of the clearing, labeling and imaging protocols to human biopsy samples. Our aim is to obtain neuronal architecture and connectivity information from focal cortical dysplasia microcircuits using samples from intractable temporal lobe epilepsy patients that undergo deep-brain electrode recording diagnosis and posterior surgical extraction of the tissue. Our computational models can allow us to discern the contributions of the observed abnormalities to neuronal hyperactivity and epileptic seizure generation.

  4. Altered Functional Connectivity in Essential Tremor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benito-León, Julián; Louis, Elan D.; Romero, Juan Pablo; Hernández-Tamames, Juan Antonio; Manzanedo, Eva; Álvarez-Linera, Juan; Bermejo-Pareja, Félix; Posada, Ignacio; Rocon, Eduardo

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Essential tremor (ET) has been associated with a spectrum of clinical features, with both motor and nonmotor elements, including cognitive deficits. We employed resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to assess whether brain networks that might be involved in the pathogenesis of nonmotor manifestations associated with ET are altered, and the relationship between abnormal connectivity and ET severity and neuropsychological function. Resting-state fMRI data in 23 ET patients (12 women and 11 men) and 22 healthy controls (HC) (12 women and 10 men) were analyzed using independent component analysis, in combination with a “dual-regression” technique, to identify the group differences of resting-state networks (RSNs) (default mode network [DMN] and executive, frontoparietal, sensorimotor, cerebellar, auditory/language, and visual networks). All participants underwent a neuropsychological and neuroimaging session, where resting-state data were collected. Relative to HC, ET patients showed increased connectivity in RSNs involved in cognitive processes (DMN and frontoparietal networks) and decreased connectivity in the cerebellum and visual networks. Changes in network integrity were associated not only with ET severity (DMN) and ET duration (DMN and left frontoparietal network), but also with cognitive ability. Moreover, in at least 3 networks (DMN and frontoparietal networks), increased connectivity was associated with worse performance on different cognitive domains (attention, executive function, visuospatial ability, verbal memory, visual memory, and language) and depressive symptoms. Further, in the visual network, decreased connectivity was associated with worse performance on visuospatial ability. ET was associated with abnormal brain connectivity in major RSNs that might be involved in both motor and nonmotor symptoms. Our findings underscore the importance of examining RSNs in this population as a biomarker of disease. PMID:26656325

  5. Postoperative cognitive dysfunction : Involvement of neuroinflammation and neuronal functioning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hovens, Iris B.; Schoemaker, Regien G.; van der Zee, Eddy A.; Absalom, Anthony R.; Heineman, Erik; van Leeuwen, Barbara L.

    2014-01-01

    Postoperative cognitive dysfunction (POCD) has been hypothesized to be mediated by surgery-induced inflammatory processes, which may influence neuronal functioning either directly or through modulation of intraneuronal pathways, such as the brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) mediated pathway.

  6. Transplanted progenitors generate functional enteric neurons in the postnatal colon

    OpenAIRE

    2013-01-01

    Cell therapy has the potential to treat gastrointestinal motility disorders caused by diseases of the enteric nervous system. Many studies have demonstrated that various stem/progenitor cells can give rise to functional neurons in the embryonic gut; however, it is not yet known whether transplanted neural progenitor cells can migrate, proliferate, and generate functional neurons in the postnatal bowel in vivo. We transplanted neurospheres generated from fetal and postnatal intestinal neural c...

  7. HIV alters neuronal mitochondrial fission/fusion in the brain during HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fields, Jerel Adam; Serger, Elisabeth; Campos, Sofia; Divakaruni, Ajit S; Kim, Changyoun; Smith, Kendall; Trejo, Margarita; Adame, Anthony; Spencer, Brian; Rockenstein, Edward; Murphy, Anne N; Ellis, Ronald J; Letendre, Scott; Grant, Igor; Masliah, Eliezer

    2016-02-01

    HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND) still occur in approximately 50% of HIV patients, and therapies to combat HAND progression are urgently needed. HIV proteins are released from infected cells and cause neuronal damage, possibly through mitochondrial abnormalities. Altered mitochondrial fission and fusion is implicated in several neurodegenerative disorders. Here, we hypothesized that mitochondrial fission/fusion may be dysregulated in neurons during HAND. We have identified decreased mitochondrial fission protein (dynamin 1-like; DNM1L) in frontal cortex tissues of HAND donors, along with enlarged and elongated mitochondria localized to the soma of damaged neurons. Similar pathology was observed in the brains of GFAP-gp120 tg mice. In vitro, recombinant gp120 decreased total and active DNM1L levels, reduced the level of Mitotracker staining, and increased extracellular acidification rate (ECAR) in primary neurons. DNM1L knockdown enhanced the effects of gp120 as measured by reduced Mitotracker signal in the treated cells. Interestingly, overexpression of DNM1L increased the level of Mitotracker staining in primary rat neurons and reduced neuroinflammation and neurodegeneration in the GFAP-gp120-tg mice. These data suggest that mitochondrial biogenesis dynamics are shifted towards mitochondrial fusion in brains of HAND patients and this may be due to gp120-induced reduction in DNM1L activity. Promoting mitochondrial fission during HIV infection of the CNS may restore mitochondrial biogenesis and prevent neurodegeneration.

  8. Lidocaine alters the input resistance and evokes neural activity in crayfish sensory neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keceli, M B; Purali, N

    2007-03-01

    Lidocaine, a use-dependent Na(+) channel blocker, paradoxically evokes neural activation in the slowly adapting stretch receptor organ of crayfish at 5-10 mmol/l concentration. For elucidating the underlying mechanisms of this paradoxical effect, a series of conventional electrophysiological experiments were performed in the stretch receptor neurons of crayfish. In the presence of tetrodotoxin, lidocaine did not evoke impulse activity, however, a slowly developing and dose-dependent depolarization occurred in both the rapidly and slowly adapting stretch receptors. Similar effects were observed by perfusion of equivalent concentrations of benzocaine but not of procaine or prilocaine. Lidocaine did not evoke neural activity in the rapidly adapting neuron which fires action potential(s) in response to rapid changes in membrane potential. Slowly developing mode of the depolarization indicated the reason why only depolarization but not action potential responses were observed in the rapidly adapting neuron. The depolarizing effect of lidocaine was independent from any ionic channel or exchanger system. However, lidocaine and benzocaine but not procaine and prilocaine evoked a dose-dependent alteration in the input resistance of the neuron. It was proposed that the principal mechanism of the effect could stem from a change in the physical properties of the neuronal membrane.

  9. Spinocerebellar ataxia type 13 mutant potassium channel alters neuronal excitability and causes locomotor deficits in zebrafish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Issa, Fadi A; Mazzochi, Christopher; Mock, Allan F; Papazian, Diane M

    2011-05-04

    Whether changes in neuronal excitability can cause neurodegenerative disease in the absence of other factors such as protein aggregation is unknown. Mutations in the Kv3.3 voltage-gated K(+) channel cause spinocerebellar ataxia type 13 (SCA13), a human autosomal-dominant disease characterized by locomotor impairment and the death of cerebellar neurons. Kv3.3 channels facilitate repetitive, high-frequency firing of action potentials, suggesting that pathogenesis in SCA13 is triggered by changes in electrical activity in neurons. To investigate whether SCA13 mutations alter excitability in vivo, we expressed the human dominant-negative R420H mutant subunit in zebrafish. The disease-causing mutation specifically suppressed the excitability of Kv3.3-expressing, fast-spiking motor neurons during evoked firing and fictive swimming and, in parallel, decreased the precision and amplitude of the startle response. The dominant-negative effect of the mutant subunit on K(+) current amplitude was directly responsible for the reduced excitability and locomotor phenotype. Our data provide strong evidence that changes in excitability initiate pathogenesis in SCA13 and establish zebrafish as an excellent model system for investigating how changes in neuronal activity impair locomotor control and cause cell death.

  10. Expressing exogenous functional odorant receptors in cultured olfactory sensory neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fomina Alla F

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Olfactory discrimination depends on the large numbers of odorant receptor genes and differential ligand-receptor signaling among neurons expressing different receptors. In this study, we describe an in vitro system that enables the expression of exogenous odorant receptors in cultured olfactory sensory neurons. Olfactory sensory neurons in the culture express characteristic signaling molecules and, therefore, provide a system to study receptor function within its intrinsic cellular environment. Results We demonstrate that cultured olfactory sensory neurons express endogenous odorant receptors. Lentiviral vector-mediated gene transfer enables successful ectopic expression of odorant receptors. We show that the ectopically expressed mouse I7 is functional in the cultured olfactory sensory neurons. When two different odorant receptors are ectopically expressed simultaneously, both receptor proteins co-localized in the same olfactory sensory neurons up to 10 days in vitro. Conclusion This culture technique provided an efficient method to culture olfactory sensory neurons whose morphology, molecular characteristics and maturation progression resembled those observed in vivo. Using this system, regulation of odorant receptor expression and its ligand specificity can be studied in its intrinsic cellular environment.

  11. Transgenic miR132 alters neuronal spine density and impairs novel object recognition memory.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katelin F Hansen

    Full Text Available Inducible gene expression plays a central role in neuronal plasticity, learning, and memory, and dysfunction of the underlying molecular events can lead to severe neuronal disorders. In addition to coding transcripts (mRNAs, non-coding microRNAs (miRNAs appear to play a role in these processes. For instance, the CREB-regulated miRNA miR132 has been shown to affect neuronal structure in an activity-dependent manner, yet the details of its physiological effects and the behavioral consequences in vivo remain unclear. To examine these questions, we employed a transgenic mouse strain that expresses miR132 in forebrain neurons. Morphometric analysis of hippocampal neurons revealed that transgenic miR132 triggers a marked increase in dendritic spine density. Additionally, miR132 transgenic mice exhibited a decrease in the expression of MeCP2, a protein implicated in Rett Syndrome and other disorders of mental retardation. Consistent with these findings, miR132 transgenic mice displayed significant deficits in novel object recognition. Together, these data support a role for miR132 as a regulator of neuronal structure and function, and raise the possibility that dysregulation of miR132 could contribute to an array of cognitive disorders.

  12. Exposure to extremely low frequency electromagnetic fields alters the calcium dynamics of cultured entorhinal cortex neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luo, Fen-Lan; Yang, Nian; He, Chao; Li, Hong-Li; Li, Chao; Chen, Fang; Xiong, Jia-Xiang; Hu, Zhi-An; Zhang, Jun

    2014-11-01

    Previous studies have revealed that extremely low frequency electromagnetic field (ELF-EMF) exposure affects neuronal dendritic spine density and NMDAR and AMPAR subunit expressions in the entorhinal cortex (EC). Although calcium signaling has a critical role in control of EC neuronal functions, however, it is still unclear whether the ELF-EMF exposure affects the EC neuronal calcium homeostasis. In the present study, using whole-cell recording and calcium imaging, we record the whole-cell inward currents that contain the voltage-gated calcium currents and show that ELF-EMF (50Hz, 1mT or 3mT, lasting 24h) exposure does not influence these currents. Next, we specifically isolate the high-voltage activated (HVA) and low-voltage activated (LVA) calcium channels-induced currents. Similarly, the activation and inactivation characteristics of these membrane calcium channels are also not influenced by ELF-EMF. Importantly, ELF-EMF exposure reduces the maximum amplitude of the high-K(+)-evoked calcium elevation in EC neurons, which is abolished by thapsigargin, a Ca(2+) ATPase inhibitor, to empty the intracellular calcium stores of EC neurons. Together, these findings indicate that ELF-EMF exposure specifically influences the intracellular calcium dynamics of cultural EC neurons via a calcium channel-independent mechanism.

  13. Degenerative alterations in noradrenergic neurons of the locus coeruleus in Alzheimer’s disease****

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Lihua Liu; Saiping Luo; Leping Zeng; Weihong Wang; Liming Yuan; Xiaohong Jian

    2013-01-01

    Mice carrying mutant amyloid-β precursor protein and presenilin-1 genes (APP/PS1 double trans-genic mice) have frequently been used in studies of Alzheimer’s disease; however, such studies have focused mainly on hippocampal and cortical changes. The severity of Alzheimer’s disease is known to correlate with the amount of amyloid-βprotein deposition and the number of dead neurons in the locus coeruleus. In the present study, we assigned APP/PS1 double transgenic mice to two groups according to age: young mice (5–6 months old) and aged mice (16–17 months old). Age-matched wild-type mice were used as controls. Immunohistochemistry for tyrosine hydroxylase (a marker of catecholaminergic neurons in the locus coeruleus) revealed that APP/PS1 mice had 23%fewer cel s in the locus coeruleus compared with aged wild-type mice. APP/PS1 mice also had increased numbers of cel bodies of neurons positive for tyrosine hydroxylase, but fewer tyrosine hydroxylase-positive fibers, which were also short, thick and broken. Quantitative analysis using unbiased stereology showed a significant age-related increase in the mean volume of tyrosine hy-droxylase-positive neurons in aged APP/PS1 mice compared with young APP/PS1 mice. Moreover, the mean volume of tyrosine hydroxylase-positive neurons was positively correlated with the total volume of the locus coeruleus. These findings indicate that noradrenergic neurons and fibers in the locus coeruleus are predisposed to degenerative alterations in APP/PS1 double transgenic mice.

  14. Selective alterations of neurons and circuits related to early memory loss in Alzheimer's disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María eLlorens-Martín

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available A progressive loss of episodic memory is a well-known clinical symptom that characterizes Alzheimer’s disease (AD. The beginning of this loss of memory has been associated with the very early, pathological accumulation of tau and neuronal degeneration observed in the entorhinal cortex (EC. Tau-related pathology is thought to then spread progressively to the hippocampal formation and other brain areas as the disease progresses. The major cortical afferent source of the hippocampus and dentate gyrus is the EC through the perforant pathway. At least two main circuits participate in the connection between EC and the hippocampus; one originating in layer II and the other in layer III of the EC giving rise to the classical trisynaptic (ECII→dentate gyrus→CA3→CA1 and monosynaptic (ECIII→CA1 circuits. Thus, the study of the early pathological changes in these circuits is of great interest. In this review, we will discuss mainly the alterations of the granule cell neurons of the dentate gyrus and the atrophy of CA1 pyramidal neurons that occur in AD in relation to the possible differential alterations of these two main circuits.

  15. Selective alterations of neurons and circuits related to early memory loss in Alzheimer’s disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Llorens-Martín, Maria; Blazquez-Llorca, Lidia; Benavides-Piccione, Ruth; Rabano, Alberto; Hernandez, Felix; Avila, Jesus; DeFelipe, Javier

    2014-01-01

    A progressive loss of episodic memory is a well-known clinical symptom that characterizes Alzheimer’s disease (AD). The beginning of this loss of memory has been associated with the very early, pathological accumulation of tau and neuronal degeneration observed in the entorhinal cortex (EC). Tau-related pathology is thought to then spread progressively to the hippocampal formation and other brain areas as the disease progresses. The major cortical afferent source of the hippocampus and dentate gyrus is the EC through the perforant pathway. At least two main circuits participate in the connection between EC and the hippocampus; one originating in layer II and the other in layer III of the EC giving rise to the classical trisynaptic (ECII → dentate gyrus → CA3 → CA1) and monosynaptic (ECIII → CA1) circuits. Thus, the study of the early pathological changes in these circuits is of great interest. In this review, we will discuss mainly the alterations of the granule cell neurons of the dentate gyrus and the atrophy of CA1 pyramidal neurons that occur in AD in relation to the possible differential alterations of these two main circuits. PMID:24904307

  16. Transplanted progenitors generate functional enteric neurons in the postnatal colon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hotta, Ryo; Stamp, Lincon A.; Foong, Jaime P.P.; McConnell, Sophie N.; Bergner, Annette J.; Anderson, Richard B.; Enomoto, Hideki; Newgreen, Donald F.; Obermayr, Florian; Furness, John B.; Young, Heather M.

    2013-01-01

    Cell therapy has the potential to treat gastrointestinal motility disorders caused by diseases of the enteric nervous system. Many studies have demonstrated that various stem/progenitor cells can give rise to functional neurons in the embryonic gut; however, it is not yet known whether transplanted neural progenitor cells can migrate, proliferate, and generate functional neurons in the postnatal bowel in vivo. We transplanted neurospheres generated from fetal and postnatal intestinal neural crest–derived cells into the colon of postnatal mice. The neurosphere-derived cells migrated, proliferated, and generated neurons and glial cells that formed ganglion-like clusters within the recipient colon. Graft-derived neurons exhibited morphological, neurochemical, and electrophysiological characteristics similar to those of enteric neurons; they received synaptic inputs; and their neurites projected to muscle layers and the enteric ganglia of the recipient mice. These findings show that transplanted enteric neural progenitor cells can generate functional enteric neurons in the postnatal bowel and advances the notion that cell therapy is a promising strategy for enteric neuropathies. PMID:23454768

  17. Functional diversity and developmental changes in rat neuronal kainate receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilding, T J; Huettner, J E

    2001-04-15

    1. Whole-cell currents evoked by kainate and the GluR5-selective agonist (RS)-2-amino-3-(3-hydroxy-5-tertbutylisoxazol-4-yl)propanoic acid (ATPA) were used to compare the physiological properties of kainate receptors expressed by neurons from rat hippocampus, spinal cord and dorsal root ganglia. 2. In contrast to kainate, which evoked desensitizing currents with similar decay rates and steady-state components in all three cell types, responses to ATPA were distinctly different in the three cell populations. Currents evoked by ATPA displayed a significant steady-state component in hippocampal neurons, but decayed rapidly to baseline in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) cells. ATPA failed to evoke current in many of the spinal neurons. 3. ATPA caused steady-state desensitization in DRG cells with an IC50 of 41 nM. Recovery from desensitization of DRG cell receptors by ATPA was significantly slower than for any previously described agonist. In contrast, hippocampal kainate receptors recovered from desensitization by ATPA within a few seconds. 4. Half-maximal activation of kainate receptors in hippocampal neurons required 938 nM ATPA. In DRG cells treated with concanavalin A the EC50 for ATPA was 341 nM. ATPA evoked current in embryonic hippocampal neurons but with lower amplitude relative to kainate than in cultured postnatal neurons. 5. Collectively, these results highlight functional differences between neuronal kainate receptors that may reflect their distinct subunit composition and their diverse roles in synaptic transmission.

  18. Kif5 regulates mitochondrial movement, morphology, function and neuronal survival.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iworima, Diepiriye G; Pasqualotto, Bryce A; Rintoul, Gordon L

    2016-04-01

    Due to the unique architecture of neurons, trafficking of mitochondria throughout processes to regions of high energetic demand is critical to sustain neuronal health. It has been suggested that compromised mitochondrial trafficking may play a role in neurodegenerative diseases. We evaluated the consequences of disrupted kif5c-mediated mitochondrial trafficking on mitochondrial form and function in primary rat cortical neurons. Morphological changes in mitochondria appeared to be due to remodelling, a phenomenon distinct from mitochondrial fission, which resulted in punctate-shaped mitochondria. We also demonstrated that neurons displaying punctate mitochondria exhibited relatively decreased ROS and increased cellular ATP levels using ROS-sensitive GFP and ATP FRET probes, respectively. Somewhat unexpectedly, neurons overexpressing the dominant negative form of kif5c exhibited enhanced survival following excitotoxicity, suggesting that the impairment of mitochondrial trafficking conferred some form of neuroprotection. However, when neurons were exposed to H2O2, disruption of kif5c exacerbated cell death indicating that the effect on cell viability was dependent on the mode of toxicity. Our results suggest a novel role of kif5c. In addition to mediating mitochondrial transport, kif5c plays a role in the mechanism of regulating mitochondrial morphology. Our results also suggest that kif5c mediated mitochondrial dynamics may play an important role in regulating mitochondrial function and in turn cellular health. Moreover, our studies demonstrate an interesting interplay between the regulation of mitochondrial motility and morphology.

  19. Mitochondrial Alterations by PARKIN in Dopaminergic Neurons Using PARK2 Patient-Specific and PARK2 Knockout Isogenic iPSC Lines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Atossa Shaltouki

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available In this study, we used patient-specific and isogenic PARK2-induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs to show that mutations in PARK2 alter neuronal proliferation. The percentage of TH+ neurons was decreased in Parkinson’s disease (PD patient-derived neurons carrying various mutations in PARK2 compared with an age-matched control subject. This reduction was accompanied by alterations in mitochondrial:cell volume fraction (mitochondrial volume fraction. The same phenotype was confirmed in isogenic PARK2 null lines. The mitochondrial phenotype was also seen in non-midbrain neurons differentiated from the PARK2 null line, as was the functional phenotype of reduced proliferation in culture. Whole genome expression profiling at various stages of differentiation confirmed the mitochondrial phenotype and identified pathways altered by PARK2 dysfunction that include PD-related genes. Our results are consistent with current model of PARK2 function where damaged mitochondria are targeted for degradation via a PARK2/PINK1-mediated mechanism.

  20. Nutrient excess and altered mitochondrial proteome and function contribute to neurodegeneration in diabetes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chowdhury, Subir K Roy; Dobrowsky, Rick T; Fernyhough, Paul

    2011-11-01

    Diabetic neuropathy is a major complication of diabetes that results in the progressive deterioration of the sensory nervous system. Mitochondrial dysfunction has been proposed to play an important role in the pathogenesis of the neurodegeneration observed in diabetic neuropathy. Our recent work has shown that mitochondrial dysfunction occurs in dorsal root ganglia (DRG) sensory neurons in streptozotocin (STZ) induced diabetic rodents. In neurons, the nutrient excess associated with prolonged diabetes may trigger a switching off of AMP kinase (AMPK) and/or silent information regulator T1 (SIRT1) signaling leading to impaired peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ coactivator-1 (PGC-1α) expression/activity and diminished mitochondrial activity. This review briefly summarizes the alterations of mitochondrial function and proteome in sensory neurons of STZ-diabetic rodents. We also discuss the possible involvement of AMPK/SIRT/PGC-1α pathway in other diabetic models and different tissues affected by diabetes.

  1. Gut region-dependent alterations of nitrergic myenteric neurons after chronic alcohol consumption

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Mária; Bagyánszki; Nikolett; Bódi

    2015-01-01

    Chronic alcohol abuse damages nearly every organ in the body. The harmful effects of ethanol on thebrain, the liver and the pancreas are well documented. Although chronic alcohol consumption causes serious impairments also in the gastrointestinal tract like altered motility, mucosal damage, impaired absorption of nu-trients and inflammation, the effects of chronically consumed ethanol on the enteric nervous system are less detailed. While the nitrergic myenteric neurons play an essential role in the regulation of gastrointestinal peristalsis, it was hypothesised, that these neurons are the first targets of consumed ethanol or its metabolites generated in the different gastrointestinal segments. To reinforce this hypothesis the effects of ethanol on the gastrointestinal tract was investigated in different rodent models with quantitative immunohistochemistry, in vivo and in vitro motility measurements, western blot analysis, evaluation of nitric oxide synthase enzyme activity and bio-imaging of nitric oxide synthesis. These results suggest that chronic alcohol consumption did not result significant neural loss, but primarily impaired the nitrergic pathways in gut region-dependent way leading to disturbed gastrointestinal motility. The gut segment-specific differences in the effects of chronic alcohol consumption highlight the significance the ethanol-induced neuronal microenvironment involving oxidative stress and intestinal microbiota.

  2. Neuronal, non-neuronal and hybrid forms of enolase in brain: structural, immunological and functional comparisons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marangos, P J; Zis, A P; Clark, R L; Goodwin, F K

    1978-07-07

    Three forms of the glycolytic enzyme, enolase [2-phospho-D-glycerate hydrolase (E.C. No. 4.2.1.11)] have been prepared from rat whole brain extract. The most acidic enolase form is neuron specific enolase (NSE) which had previously been designated neuron specific protein (NSP). The least acidic form designated non-neuronal enolase (NNE) has been purified and compared structurally, immunologically and functionally to NSE. NNE is a dimer of 86,500 M.W. consistint of two very similar subunits. The data establish that NNE is larger than NSE which has been shown to be composed of two apparently identical 39,000 molecular weight subunits (78,000). NNE is less acidic than NSE having a pI of 5.9 compared to the value of 4.7 for NSE. Structural and immunological analysis establishes that the NNE subunit is distinct from the NSE subunit, and are therfore products of two separate genes. The structural designation of NSE is (gammagamma) and that of NNE (alpha' alpha'). NSE is strictly localized in neurons indicating that the gene coding for the gamma subunit is only expressed in neuronal cells. The intermediate brain enolase form has been partially purified; structural and immunological evidence indicate that it is a hybrid molecule consisting of one NNE subunit and one NSE subunit (alpha'gamma).

  3. The influence of stress and gonadal hormones on neuronal structure and function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farrell, Mollee R; Gruene, Tina M; Shansky, Rebecca M

    2015-11-01

    This article is part of a Special Issue "SBN 2014". The brain is highly plastic, allowing us to adapt and respond to environmental and physiological challenges and experiences. In this review, we discuss the relationships among alterations in dendritic arborization, spine morphology, and behavior due to stress exposure, endogenous hormone fluctuation, or exogenous hormonal manipulation. Very few studies investigate structure-function associations directly in the same cohort of animals, and there are notable inconsistencies in evidence of structure-function relationships in the prefrontal cortex and hippocampus. Moreover, little work has been done to probe the causal relationship between dendritic morphology and neuronal excitability, leaving only speculation about the adaptive versus maladaptive nature of experience-dependent dendritic remodeling. We propose that future studies combine electrophysiology with a circuit-level approach to better understand how dendritic structure contributes to neuronal functional properties and behavioral outcomes.

  4. Sleep, Neuronal Plasticity and Brain Function

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meerlo, Peter; Benca, Ruth M.; Abel, Ted

    2015-01-01

    Sleep is truly one of the biggest mysteries in behavioral neuroscience. Humans spend a substantial portion of their lives asleep, as do all other mammalian and bird species that have been studied to date, yet the functions of sleep remain elusive and continue to be a topic of debate among sleep rese

  5. The C. elegans NeuroD homolog cnd-1 functions in multiple aspects of motor neuron fate specification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hallam, S; Singer, E; Waring, D; Jin, Y

    2000-10-01

    The basic helix-loop-helix transcription factor NeuroD (Neurod1) has been implicated in neuronal fate determination, differentiation and survival. Here we report the expression and functional analysis of cnd-1, a C. elegans NeuroD homolog. cnd-1 expression was first detected in neuroblasts of the AB lineage in 14 cell embryos and maintained in many neuronal descendants of the AB lineage during embryogenesis, diminishing in most terminally differentiated neurons prior to hatching. Specifically, cnd-1 reporter genes were expressed in the precursors of the embryonic ventral cord motor neurons and their progeny. A loss-of-function mutant, cnd-1(ju29), exhibited multiple defects in the ventral cord motor neurons. First, the number of motor neurons was reduced, possibly caused by the premature withdrawal of the precursors from mitotic cycles. Second, the strict correlation between the fate of a motor neuron with respect to its lineage and position in the ventral cord was disrupted, as manifested by the variable expression pattern of motor neuron fate specific markers. Third, motor neurons also exhibited defects in terminal differentiation characteristics including axonal morphology and synaptic connectivity. Finally, the expression patterns of three neuronal type-specific transcription factors, unc-3, unc-4 and unc-30, were altered. Our data suggest that cnd-1 may specify the identity of ventral cord motor neurons both by maintaining the mitotic competence of their precursors and by modulating the expression of neuronal type-specific determination factors. cnd-1 appears to have combined the functions of several vertebrate neurogenic bHLH proteins and may represent an ancestral form of this protein family.

  6. Confounding the origin and function of mirror neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rizzolatti, Giacomo

    2014-04-01

    Cook et al. argue that mirror neurons originate in sensorimotor associative learning and that their function is determined by their origin. Both these claims are hard to accept. It is here suggested that a major role in the origin of the mirror mechanism is played by top-down connections rather than by associative learning.

  7. Mirror neurons and their function in cognitively understood empathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corradini, Antonella; Antonietti, Alessandro

    2013-09-01

    The current renewal of interest in empathy is closely connected to the recent neurobiological discovery of mirror neurons. Although the concept of empathy has been widely deployed, we shall focus upon one main psychological function it serves: enabling us to understand other peoples' intentions. In this essay we will draw on neuroscientific, psychological, and philosophical literature in order to investigate the relationships between mirror neurons and empathy as to intention understanding. Firstly, it will be explored whether mirror neurons are the neural basis of our empathic capacities: a vast array of empirical results appears to confirm this hypothesis. Secondly, the higher level capacity of reenactive empathy will be examined and the question will be addressed whether philosophical analysis alone is able to provide a foundation for this more abstract level of empathy. The conclusion will be drawn that both empirical evidence and philosophical analysis can jointly contribute to the clarification of the concept of empathy.

  8. Functionalized anatomical models for EM-neuron Interaction modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neufeld, Esra; Cassará, Antonino Mario; Montanaro, Hazael; Kuster, Niels; Kainz, Wolfgang

    2016-06-01

    The understanding of interactions between electromagnetic (EM) fields and nerves are crucial in contexts ranging from therapeutic neurostimulation to low frequency EM exposure safety. To properly consider the impact of in vivo induced field inhomogeneity on non-linear neuronal dynamics, coupled EM-neuronal dynamics modeling is required. For that purpose, novel functionalized computable human phantoms have been developed. Their implementation and the systematic verification of the integrated anisotropic quasi-static EM solver and neuronal dynamics modeling functionality, based on the method of manufactured solutions and numerical reference data, is described. Electric and magnetic stimulation of the ulnar and sciatic nerve were modeled to help understanding a range of controversial issues related to the magnitude and optimal determination of strength-duration (SD) time constants. The results indicate the importance of considering the stimulation-specific inhomogeneous field distributions (especially at tissue interfaces), realistic models of non-linear neuronal dynamics, very short pulses, and suitable SD extrapolation models. These results and the functionalized computable phantom will influence and support the development of safe and effective neuroprosthetic devices and novel electroceuticals. Furthermore they will assist the evaluation of existing low frequency exposure standards for the entire population under all exposure conditions.

  9. Dakin Solution Alters Macrophage Viability and Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-07-18

    crobial for wound care. DS has been shown to be toxic to host cells, but effects on immune cells are not well documented. Materials and methods: DS at 0.5...characterize the impact of DS on macrophage viability and function in vitro. 2. Materials and methods 2.1. Cell lines and reagents Murine macrophages...strainer to separate conidia from mycelium , and stored in DMEM at 4C. 2.3. Cellular viability assays Effect of DS on cellular viability was

  10. Alteration of Motor Network Function Following Injury

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-10-01

    843–852, 1996. Sutherland H, Bickmore WA. Transcription factories: gene expression in unions ? Nat Rev Genet 10: 457–466, 2009. Swensen AM, Marder E...electrodes filled with 3 M KCl (8- to 17-M resistance) with an Axoclamp 2A amplifier (Axon Instru- ments, Union City, CA). In TEVC experiments when all... neuromuscular junction. J Physiol 462: 243–260, 1993. Olson RO, Liu Z, Nomura Y, Song W, Dong K. Molecular and functional characterization of voltage-gated

  11. Altered Functional Performance in Patients with Fibromyalgia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costa, Isis da Silva; Gamundí, Antoni; Miranda, José G. Vivas; França, Lucas G. Souza; De Santana, Charles Novaes; Montoya, Pedro

    2017-01-01

    Fibromyalgia is a common chronic pain condition that exerts a considerable impact on patients' daily activities and quality of life. Objectives: The main objective of the present study was to evaluate kinematic parameters of gait, functional performance, and balance in women with fibromyalgia syndrome. Methods: The study included 26 female patients with fibromyalgia (49.2 ± 8.0 years) according to the criteria of the American College of Rheumatology, as well as 16 pain-free women (43.5 ± 8.5 years). Gait and balance parameters were extracted from video recordings of participants performing several motor tasks. Non-linear dynamic of body sway time series was also analyzed by computing the Hurst exponent. In addition, functional performance and clinical pain were obtained by using standardized motor tests (Berg's balance scale, 6-min walking test, timed up and go task, Romberg's balance test) and self-report questionnaires (Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire). Results: Walking speed was significantly diminished (p balance also revealed significant differences between fibromyalgia and pain-free controls on body sway in the medial-lateral and anterior-posterior axes (all ps balance were significantly associated with high levels of pain, depression, stiffness, anxiety, and fatigue in fibromyalgia. Conclusion: Our data revealed that both gait and balance were severely impaired in FM, and that subjective complaints associated with FM could contribute to functional disability in these patients. These findings suggest that optimal rehabilitation and fall prevention in fibromyalgia require a comprehensive assessment of both psychological responses to pain and physical impairments during postural control and gait. PMID:28184193

  12. Spaceflight alters immune cell function and distribution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sonnenfeld, Gerald; Mandel, Adrian D.; Konstantinova, Irina V.; Berry, Wallace D.; Taylor, Gerald R.; Lesniak, A. T.; Fuchs, Boris B.; Rakhmilevich, Alexander L.

    1992-01-01

    Experiments are described which were performed onboard Cosmos 2044 to determine spaceflight effects on immunologically important cell function and distribution. Results indicate that bone marrow cells from flown and suspended rats exhibited a decreased response to a granulocyte/monocyte colony-stimulating factor compared with the bone marrow cells from control rats. Bone marrow cells showed an increase in the percentage of cells expressing markers for helper T-cells in the myelogenous population and increased percentages of anti-asialo granulocyte/monocyte-1-bearing interleulin-2 receptor bearing pan T- and helper T-cells in the lymphocytic population.

  13. Neural Progenitor Cells Promote Axonal Growth and Alter Axonal mRNA Localization in Adult Neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merianda, Tanuja T.; Jin, Ying

    2017-01-01

    Abstract The inhibitory environment of the spinal cord and the intrinsic properties of neurons prevent regeneration of axons following CNS injury. However, both ascending and descending axons of the injured spinal cord have been shown to regenerate into grafts of embryonic neural progenitor cells (NPCs). Previous studies have shown that grafts composed of glial-restricted progenitors (GRPs) and neural-restricted progenitors (NRPs) can provide a permissive microenvironment for axon growth. We have used cocultures of adult rat dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons together with NPCs, which have shown significant enhancement of axon growth by embryonic rat GRP and GRPs/NRPs, both in coculture conditions and when DRGs are exposed to conditioned medium from the NPC cultures. This growth-promoting effect of NPC-conditioned medium was also seen in injury-conditioned neurons. DRGs cocultured with GRPs/NRPs showed altered expression of regeneration-associated genes at transcriptional and post-transcriptional levels. We found that levels of GAP-43 mRNA increased in DRG cell bodies and axons. However, hepcidin antimicrobial peptide (HAMP) mRNA decreased in the cell bodies of DRGs cocultured with GRPs/NRPs, which is distinct from the increase in cell body HAMP mRNA levels seen in DRGs after injury conditioning. Endogenous GAP-43 and β-actin mRNAs as well as reporter RNAs carrying axonally localizing 3'UTRs of these transcripts showed significantly increased levels in distal axons in the DRGs cocultured with GRPs/NRPs. These results indicate that axon growth promoted by NPCs is associated not only with enhanced transcription of growth-associated genes but also can increase localization of some mRNAs into growing axons. PMID:28197547

  14. MicroRNA function is required for neurite outgrowth of mature neurons in the mouse postnatal cerebral cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Janet eHong

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available The structure of the postnatal mammalian cerebral cortex is an assembly of numerous mature neurons that exhibit proper neurite outgrowth and axonal and dendritic morphology. While many protein coding genes are shown to be involved in neuronal maturation, the role of microRNAs (miRNAs in this process is also becoming evident. We here report that blocking miRNA biogenesis in differentiated neurons results in microcephaly-like phenotypes in the postnatal mouse brain. The smaller brain defect is not caused by defective neurogenesis, altered neuronal migration or significant neuronal cell death. Surprisingly, a dramatic increase in neuronal packing density within the postnatal brain is observed. Loss of miRNA function causes shorter neurite outgrowth and smaller soma size of mature neurons in vitro. Our results reveal the impact of miRNAs on normal development of neuronal morphology and brain function. Because neurite outgrowth is critical for neuroregeneration, our studies further highlight the importance of miRNAs in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

  15. Neonicotinoid Insecticides Alter the Gene Expression Profile of Neuron-Enriched Cultures from Neonatal Rat Cerebellum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Junko Kimura-Kuroda

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Neonicotinoids are considered safe because of their low affinities to mammalian nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs relative to insect nAChRs. However, because of importance of nAChRs in mammalian brain development, there remains a need to establish the safety of chronic neonicotinoid exposures with regards to children’s health. Here we examined the effects of longterm (14 days and low dose (1 μM exposure of neuron-enriched cultures from neonatal rat cerebellum to nicotine and two neonicotinoids: acetamiprid and imidacloprid. Immunocytochemistry revealed no differences in the number or morphology of immature neurons or glial cells in any group versus untreated control cultures. However, a slight disturbance in Purkinje cell dendritic arborization was observed in the exposed cultures. Next we performed transcriptome analysis on total RNAs using microarrays, and identified significant differential expression (p < 0.05, q < 0.05, ≥1.5 fold between control cultures versus nicotine-, acetamiprid-, or imidacloprid-exposed cultures in 34, 48, and 67 genes, respectively. Common to all exposed groups were nine genes essential for neurodevelopment, suggesting that chronic neonicotinoid exposure alters the transcriptome of the developing mammalian brain in a similar way to nicotine exposure. Our results highlight the need for further careful investigations into the effects of neonicotinoids in the developing mammalian brain.

  16. Alterations in cortical thickness and neuronal density in the frontal cortex of Albert Einstein.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, B; Harvey, T

    1996-06-07

    Neuronal density, neuron size, and the number of neurons under 1 mm2 of cerebral cortical surface area were measured in the right pre-frontal cortex of Albert Einstein and five elderly control subjects. Measurement of neuronal density used the optical dissector technique on celloidin-embedded cresyl violet-stained sections. The neurons counted provided a systematic random sample for the measurement of cell body cross-sectional area. Einstein's cortex did not differ from the control subjects in the number of neurons under 1 mm2 of cerebral cortex or in mean neuronal size. Because Einstein's cortex was thinner than the controls he had a greater neuronal density.

  17. Effects of chronic ethanol exposure on neuronal function in the prefrontal cortex and extended amygdala.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pleil, Kristen E; Lowery-Gionta, Emily G; Crowley, Nicole A; Li, Chia; Marcinkiewcz, Catherine A; Rose, Jamie H; McCall, Nora M; Maldonado-Devincci, Antoniette M; Morrow, A Leslie; Jones, Sara R; Kash, Thomas L

    2015-12-01

    Chronic alcohol consumption and withdrawal leads to anxiety, escalated alcohol drinking behavior, and alcohol dependence. Alterations in the function of key structures within the cortico-limbic neural circuit have been implicated in underlying the negative behavioral consequences of chronic alcohol exposure in both humans and rodents. Here, we used chronic intermittent ethanol vapor exposure (CIE) in male C57BL/6J mice to evaluate the effects of chronic alcohol exposure and withdrawal on anxiety-like behavior and basal synaptic function and neuronal excitability in prefrontal cortical and extended amygdala brain regions. Forty-eight hours after four cycles of CIE, mice were either assayed in the marble burying test (MBT) or their brains were harvested and whole-cell electrophysiological recordings were performed in the prelimbic and infralimbic medial prefrontal cortex (PLC and ILC), the lateral and medial central nucleus of the amygdala (lCeA and mCeA), and the dorsal and ventral bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (dBNST and vBNST). Ethanol-exposed mice displayed increased anxiety in the MBT compared to air-exposed controls, and alterations in neuronal function were observed in all brain structures examined, including several distinct differences between subregions within each structure. Chronic ethanol exposure induced hyperexcitability of the ILC, as well as a shift toward excitation in synaptic drive and hyperexcitability of vBNST neurons; in contrast, there was a net inhibition of the CeA. This study reveals extensive effects of chronic ethanol exposure on the basal function of cortico-limbic brain regions, suggests that there may be complex interactions between these regions in the regulation of ethanol-dependent alterations in anxiety state, and highlights the need for future examination of projection-specific effects of ethanol in cortico-limbic circuitry.

  18. Menthol Alone Upregulates Midbrain nAChRs, Alters nAChR Subtype Stoichiometry, Alters Dopamine Neuron Firing Frequency, and Prevents Nicotine Reward.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henderson, Brandon J; Wall, Teagan R; Henley, Beverley M; Kim, Charlene H; Nichols, Weston A; Moaddel, Ruin; Xiao, Cheng; Lester, Henry A

    2016-03-09

    Upregulation of β2 subunit-containing (β2*) nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) is implicated in several aspects of nicotine addiction, and menthol cigarette smokers tend to upregulate β2* nAChRs more than nonmenthol cigarette smokers. We investigated the effect of long-term menthol alone on midbrain neurons containing nAChRs. In midbrain dopaminergic (DA) neurons from mice containing fluorescent nAChR subunits, menthol alone increased the number of α4 and α6 nAChR subunits, but this upregulation did not occur in midbrain GABAergic neurons. Thus, chronic menthol produces a cell-type-selective upregulation of α4* nAChRs, complementing that of chronic nicotine alone, which upregulates α4 subunit-containing (α4*) nAChRs in GABAergic but not DA neurons. In mouse brain slices and cultured midbrain neurons, menthol reduced DA neuron firing frequency and altered DA neuron excitability following nAChR activation. Furthermore, menthol exposure before nicotine abolished nicotine reward-related behavior in mice. In neuroblastoma cells transfected with fluorescent nAChR subunits, exposure to 500 nm menthol alone also increased nAChR number and favored the formation of (α4)3(β2)2 nAChRs; this contrasts with the action of nicotine itself, which favors (α4)2(β2)3 nAChRs. Menthol alone also increases the number of α6β2 receptors that exclude the β3 subunit. Thus, menthol stabilizes lower-sensitivity α4* and α6 subunit-containing nAChRs, possibly by acting as a chemical chaperone. The abolition of nicotine reward-related behavior may be mediated through menthol's ability to stabilize lower-sensitivity nAChRs and alter DA neuron excitability. We conclude that menthol is more than a tobacco flavorant: administered alone chronically, it alters midbrain DA neurons of the nicotine reward-related pathway.

  19. Stimulation of neuronal neurite outgrowth using functionalized carbon nanotubes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matsumoto, K.; Sato, C.; Naka, Y.; Whitby, R.; Shimizu, N.

    2010-03-01

    Low concentrations (0.11-1.7 µg ml - 1) of functionalized carbon nanotubes (CNTs), which are multi-walled CNTs modified by amino groups, when added with nerve growth factor (NGF), promoted outgrowth of neuronal neurites in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons and rat pheochromocytoma cell line PC12h cells in culture media. The quantity of active extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) was higher after the addition of both 0.85 µg ml - 1 CNTs and NGF than that with NGF alone. CNTs increased the number of cells with neurite outgrowth in DRG neurons and PC12h cells after the inhibition of the ERK signaling pathway using a mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK)/ERK kinase (MEK) inhibitor. Active ERK proteins were detected in MEK inhibitor-treated neurons after the addition of CNTs to the culture medium. These results demonstrate that CNTs may stimulate neurite outgrowth by activation of the ERK signaling pathway. Thus, CNTs are biocompatible and are promising candidates for biological applications and devices.

  20. Stimulation of neuronal neurite outgrowth using functionalized carbon nanotubes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Matsumoto, K; Sato, C; Shimizu, N [Graduate School of Life Sciences, Toyo University, 1-1-1 Izumino, Itakura-machi, Ora-gun, Gunma 374-0193 (Japan); Naka, Y [Bio-Nano Electronics Research Center, Toyo University, 2100 Kujirai, Kawagoe-shi, Saitama 350-8585 (Japan); Whitby, R, E-mail: shimizu@toyonet.toyo.ac.jp [School of Pharmacy and Biomolecular Sciences, University of Brighton, Cockroft Building, Lewes Road, Brighton BN2 4GJ (United Kingdom)

    2010-03-19

    Low concentrations (0.11-1.7 {mu}g ml{sup -1}) of functionalized carbon nanotubes (CNTs), which are multi-walled CNTs modified by amino groups, when added with nerve growth factor (NGF), promoted outgrowth of neuronal neurites in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons and rat pheochromocytoma cell line PC12h cells in culture media. The quantity of active extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) was higher after the addition of both 0.85 {mu}g ml{sup -1} CNTs and NGF than that with NGF alone. CNTs increased the number of cells with neurite outgrowth in DRG neurons and PC12h cells after the inhibition of the ERK signaling pathway using a mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK)/ERK kinase (MEK) inhibitor. Active ERK proteins were detected in MEK inhibitor-treated neurons after the addition of CNTs to the culture medium. These results demonstrate that CNTs may stimulate neurite outgrowth by activation of the ERK signaling pathway. Thus, CNTs are biocompatible and are promising candidates for biological applications and devices.

  1. Intracellular activities related to in vitro hippocampal sharp waves are altered in CA3 pyramidal neurons of aged mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moradi-Chameh, H; Peng, J; Wu, C; Zhang, L

    2014-09-26

    Pyramidal neurons in the hippocampal CA3 area interconnect intensively via recurrent axonal collaterals, and such CA3-to-CA3 recurrent circuitry plays important roles in the generation of hippocampal network activities. In particular, the CA3 circuitry is able to generate spontaneous sharp waves (SPWs) when examined in vitro. These in vitro SPWs are thought to result from the network activity of GABAergic inhibitory interneurons as SPW-correlating intracellular activities are featured with strong IPSPs in pyramidal neurons and EPSPs or spikes in GABAergic interneurons. In view of accumulating evidence indicating a decrease in subgroups of hippocampal GABAergic interneurons in aged animals, we test the hypothesis that the intracellular activities related to in vitro SPWs are altered in CA3 pyramidal neurons of aged mice. Hippocampal slices were prepared from adult and aged C57 black mice (ages 3-6 and 24-28months respectively). Population and single-cell activities were examined via extracellular and whole-cell patch-clamp recordings. CA3 SPW frequencies were not significantly different between the slices of adult and aged mice but SPW-correlating intracellular activities featured weaker IPSC components in aged CA3 pyramidal neurons compared to adult neurons. It was unlikely that this latter phenomenon was due to general impairments of GABAergic synapses in the aged CA3 circuitry as evoked IPSC responses and pharmacologically isolated IPSCs were observed in aged CA3 pyramidal neurons. In addition, aged CA3 pyramidal neurons displayed more positive resting potentials and had a higher propensity of burst firing than adult neurons. We postulate that alterations of GABAergic network activity may explain the reduced IPCS contributions to in vitro SPWs in aged CA3 pyramidal neurons. Overall, our present observations are supportive of the notion that excitability of hippocampal CA3 circuitry is increased in aged mice.

  2. Altered responsiveness to substance P and 5-hydroxytryptamine in cat dorsal horn neurons after 5-HT depletion with p-chlorophenylalanine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeftinija, S; Raspantini, C; Randić, M; Yaksh, T L; Go, V L; Larson, A A

    1986-03-12

    The responsiveness of functionally identified cat spinal dorsal horn neurons to iontophoretically applied substance P (SP) and 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) has been investigated by means of extracellular recording after 5-HT depletion with p-chlorophenylalanine (p-CPA). In addition, the spinal levels of 5-HT, SP, cholecystokinin octapeptide, neurotensin, and vasoactive intestinal polypeptide have been measured in intact and p-CPA-pretreated cats. In the present study we have demonstrated an altered responsiveness of dorsal horn neurons to locally applied SP and 5-HT. We found in p-CPA-pretreated cats that the proportion of neurons responding with excitation to SP and 5-HT was significantly increased. At the same time, depression induced by 5-HT in the dorsal horn cells was virtually absent in p-CPA-pretreated animals. Our finding that spinal level of 5-HT was significantly decreased in p-CPA-treated animals is consistent with previous studies. No convincing alteration in the spinal levels of 4 analyzed peptides was found in p-CPA-treated animals. The present study has shown that pharmacological depletion of 5-HT has two major effects: (1) it increases significantly the proportion of dorsal horn neurons excited by SP and 5-HT; and (2) it is ineffective in inducing 5-HT supersensitivity. Further work is needed to explain mechanisms involved in these effects.

  3. EIGENVALUE FUNCTIONS IN EXCITATORY-INHIBITORY NEURONAL NETWORKS

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Zhang Linghai

    2004-01-01

    We study the exponential stability of traveling wave solutions of nonlinear systems of integral differential equations arising from nonlinear, nonlocal, synaptically coupled, excitatory-inhibitory neuronal networks. We have proved that exponential stability of traveling waves is equivalent to linear stability. Moreover, if the real parts of nonzero spectrum of an associated linear differential operator have a uniform negative upper bound, namely, max{Reλ: λ∈σ(L), λ≠ 0} ≤ -D, for some positive constant D, and λ = 0 is an algebraically simple eigenvalue of , then the linear stability follows, where is the linear differential operator obtained by linearizing the nonlinear system about its traveling wave and σ(L) denotes the spectrum of . The main aim of this paper is to construct complex analytic functions (also called eigenvalue or Evans functions) for exploring eigenvalues of linear differential operators to study the exponential stability of traveling waves. The zeros of the eigenvalue functions coincide with the eigenvalues of(L) .When studying multipulse solutions, some components of the traveling waves cross their thresholds for many times. These crossings cause great difficulty in the construction of the eigenvalue functions. In particular, we have to solve an over-determined system to construct the eigenvalue functions. By investigating asymptotic behaviors as z → -co of candidates for eigenfunctions, we find a way to construct the eigenvalue functions.By analyzing the zeros of the eigenvalue functions, we can establish the exponential stability of traveling waves arising from neuronal networks.

  4. Altered neuronal architecture and plasticity in the visual cortex of adult MMP-3-deficient mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aerts, Jeroen; Nys, Julie; Moons, Lieve; Hu, Tjing-Tjing; Arckens, Lutgarde

    2015-09-01

    Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are Zn(2+)-dependent endopeptidases considered to be essential for normal brain development and neuroplasticity by modulating extracellular matrix proteins, receptors, adhesion molecules, growth factors and cytoskeletal proteins. Specifically, MMP-3 has recently been implicated in synaptic plasticity, hippocampus-dependent learning and neuronal development and migration in the cerebellum. However, the function(s) of this enzyme in the neocortex is understudied. Therefore, we explored the phenotypical characteristics of the neuronal architecture and the capacity for experience-dependent cortical plasticity in the visual cortex of adult MMP-3-deficient (MMP-3(-/-)) mice. Golgi-Cox stainings revealed a significant reduction in apical dendritic length and an increased number of apical obliques for layer V pyramidal neurons in the visual cortex of adult MMP-3(-/-) mice compared to wild-type (WT) animals. In addition, a significant upregulation of both phosphorylated and non-phosphorylated neurofilament protein (NF)-high, phosphorylated NF-medium, NF-low and α-internexin was detected in the visual cortex of MMP-3(-/-) mice. To assess the effect of MMP-3 deficiency on cortical plasticity, we monocularly enucleated adult MMP-3(-/-) mice and analyzed the reactivation of the contralateral visual cortex 7 weeks post-enucleation. In contrast to previous results in C57Bl/6J adult mice, activity remained confined to the binocular zone and did not expand into the monocular regions indicative for an aberrant open-eye potentiation. Permanent hypoactivity in the monocular cortex lateral and medial to V1 also indicated a lack of cross-modal plasticity. These observations demonstrate that genetic inactivation of MMP-3 has profound effects on the structural integrity and plasticity response of the visual cortex of adult mice.

  5. Functional role of a glycolipid in directional movements of neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ROSALIA MENDEZ-OTERO

    2001-06-01

    Full Text Available Migration of neurons from their site of origin to their final destination is a critical and universal step in the formation of the complex structure of the nervous system. The migratory process is thought to be governed in part by genetically and epigenetically defined sequences of signals which are interpreted by migrating cells. The molecular mechanisms that underlie neuronal migration have been the subject of intense investigation. As in other developmental processes, many molecules must participate in neuronal migration. Some molecules, such as cell adhesion molecules and motor proteins, may contribute to discrete steps in the migration act; others, like extracellular signaling molecules, may regulate the activation and/or termination of the migration program. In this article we review findings from our group that demonstrate the functional role(s of a specific glycolipid in neuronal migration and neurite outgrowth in the developing and adult nervous system.A migração de neurônios de seus sítios de origem a seus destinos finais é uma etapa universal e crítica na formação da complexa estrutura do sistema nervoso. Admite-se que o processo migratório seja governado, em parte, por sequências de sinais definidas genetica e epigeneticamente que são interpretadas pelas células migrantes. Os mecanismos moleculares subjacentes à migração neuronal têm sido objeto de intensa investigação. Como em outros processos do desenvolvimento, muitas moléculas devem participar na migração neuronal. Algumas delas, como as moléculas de adesão e proteínas motoras, podem contribuir para etapas discretas no ato de migração; outras, como moléculas extra-celulares de sinalização, podem regular a ativação e/ou o término do programa de migração. Neste artigo nós revisamos achados de nosso grupo que demonstram o(s papel (papéis funcional(ais de um glicolipídeo específico na migração neuronal e no crescimento de neuritos no sistema

  6. Mitochondrial bioenergetic alterations in mouse neuroblastoma cells infected with Sindbis virus: implications to viral replication and neuronal death.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leandro Silva da Costa

    Full Text Available The metabolic resources crucial for viral replication are provided by the host. Details of the mechanisms by which viruses interact with host metabolism, altering and recruiting high free-energy molecules for their own replication, remain unknown. Sindbis virus, the prototype of and most widespread alphavirus, causes outbreaks of arthritis in humans and serves as a model for the study of the pathogenesis of neurological diseases induced by alphaviruses in mice. In this work, respirometric analysis was used to evaluate the effects of Sindbis virus infection on mitochondrial bioenergetics of a mouse neuroblastoma cell lineage, Neuro 2a. The modulation of mitochondrial functions affected cellular ATP content and this was synchronous with Sindbis virus replication cycle and cell death. At 15 h, irrespective of effects on cell viability, viral replication induced a decrease in oxygen consumption uncoupled to ATP synthesis and a 36% decrease in maximum uncoupled respiration, which led to an increase of 30% in the fraction of oxygen consumption used for ATP synthesis. Decreased proton leak associated to complex I respiration contributed to the apparent improvement of mitochondrial function. Cellular ATP content was not affected by infection. After 24 h, mitochondria dysfunction was clearly observed as maximum uncoupled respiration reduced 65%, along with a decrease in the fraction of oxygen consumption used for ATP synthesis. Suppressed respiration driven by complexes I- and II-related substrates seemed to play a role in mitochondrial dysfunction. Despite the increase in glucose uptake and glycolytic flux, these changes were followed by a 30% decrease in ATP content and neuronal death. Taken together, mitochondrial bioenergetics is modulated during Sindbis virus infection in such a way as to favor ATP synthesis required to support active viral replication. These early changes in metabolism of Neuro 2a cells may form the molecular basis of neuronal

  7. Protracted abstinence from chronic ethanol exposure alters the structure of neurons and expression of oligodendrocytes and myelin in the medial prefrontal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navarro, A I; Mandyam, C D

    2015-05-01

    In rodents, chronic intermittent ethanol vapor exposure (CIE) produces alcohol dependence, alters the structure and activity of pyramidal neurons and decreases the number of oligodendroglial progenitors in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). In this study, adult Wistar rats were exposed to seven weeks of CIE and were withdrawn from CIE for 21 days (protracted abstinence; PA). Tissue enriched in the mPFC was processed for Western blot analysis and Golgi-Cox staining to investigate the long-lasting effects of CIE on the structure of mPFC neurons and the levels of myelin-associated proteins. PA increased dendritic arborization within apical dendrites of pyramidal neurons. These changes occurred concurrently with hypophosphorylation of the N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptor 2B (NR2B) at Tyr-1472. PA increased myelin basic protein (MBP) levels which occurred concurrently with hypophosphorylation of the premyelinating oligodendrocyte bHLH transcription factor Olig2 in the mPFC. Given that PA is associated with increased sensitivity to stress and hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis dysregulation, and stress alters oligodendrocyte expression as a function of glucocorticoid receptor (GR) activation, the levels of total GR and phosphorylated GR were also evaluated. PA produced hypophosphorylation of the GR at Ser-232 without affecting expression of total protein. These findings demonstrate persistent and compensatory effects of ethanol in the mPFC long after cessation of CIE, including enhanced myelin production and impaired GR function. Collectively, these results suggest a novel relationship between oligodendrocytes and GR in the mPFC, in which stress may alter frontal cortex function in alcohol dependent subjects by promoting hypermyelination, thereby altering the cellular composition and white matter structure in the mPFC.

  8. Cellular and behavioral outcomes of dorsal striatonigral neuron ablation: new insights into striatal functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Révy, Delphine; Jaouen, Florence; Salin, Pascal; Melon, Christophe; Chabbert, Dorian; Tafi, Elisiana; Concetta, Lena; Langa, Francina; Amalric, Marianne; Kerkerian-Le Goff, Lydia; Marie, Hélène; Beurrier, Corinne

    2014-10-01

    The striatum is the input structure of the basal ganglia network that contains heterogeneous neuronal populations, including two populations of projecting neurons called the medium spiny neurons (MSNs), and different types of interneurons. We developed a transgenic mouse model enabling inducible ablation of the striatonigral MSNs constituting the direct pathway by expressing the human diphtheria toxin (DT) receptor under the control of the Slc35d3 gene promoter, a gene enriched in striatonigral MSNs. DT injection into the striatum triggered selective elimination of the majority of striatonigral MSNs. DT-mediated ablation of striatonigral MSNs caused selective loss of cholinergic interneurons in the dorsal striatum but not in the ventral striatum (nucleus accumbens), suggesting a region-specific critical role of the direct pathway in striatal cholinergic neuron homeostasis. Mice with DT injection into the dorsal striatum showed altered basal and cocaine-induced locomotion and dramatic reduction of L-DOPA-induced dyskinesia in the parkinsonian condition. In addition, these mice exhibited reduced anxiety, revealing a role of the dorsal striatum in the modulation of behaviors involving an emotional component, behaviors generally associated with limbic structures. Altogether, these results highlight the implication of the direct striatonigral pathway in the regulation of heterogeneous functions from cell survival to regulation of motor and emotion-associated behaviors.

  9. Optogenetic inhibition of D1R containing nucleus accumbens neurons alters cocaine- mediated regulation of Tiam1

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ramesh eChandra

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Exposure to psychostimulants results in structural and synaptic plasticity in striatal medium spiny neurons (MSNs. These cellular adaptations arise from alterations in genes that are highly implicated in the rearrangement of the actin cytoskeleton, such as Tiam1. Previous studies have demonstrated a crucial role for dopamine receptor 1 (D1-containing striatal MSNs in mediating psychostimulant induced plasticity changes. These D1-MSNs in the nucleus accumbens (NAc positively regulate drug seeking, reward, and locomotor behavioral effects as well as the morphological adaptations of psychostimulant drugs. Here, we demonstrate that rats that actively self-administer cocaine display reduced levels of Tiam1 in the NAc. To further examine the cell type specific contribution to these changes in Tiam1 we used optogenetics to selectively manipulate NAc D1-MSNs or dopamine receptor 2 (D2 expressing MSNs. We find that repeated ChR2 activation of D1-MSNs but not D2-MSNs caused a down-regulation of Tiam1 levels similar to the effects of cocaine. Further, activation of D2-MSNs, which caused a late blunted cocaine-mediated locomotor behavioral response, did not alter Tiam1 levels. We then examined the contribution of D1-MSNs to the cocaine-mediated decrease of Tiam1. Using the light activated chloride pump, eNpHR3.0, we selectively inhibited D1-MSNs during cocaine exposure, which resulted in a behavioral blockade of cocaine-induced locomotor sensitization. Moreover, inhibiting these NAc D1-MSNs during cocaine exposure reversed the down-regulation of Tiam1 gene expression and protein levels. These data demonstrate that altering activity in specific neural circuits with optogenetics can impact the underlying molecular substrates of psychostimulant mediated behavior and function.

  10. An in silico agent-based model demonstrates Reelin function in directing lamination of neurons during cortical development.

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    James R Caffrey

    Full Text Available The characteristic six-layered appearance of the neocortex arises from the correct positioning of pyramidal neurons during development and alterations in this process can cause intellectual disabilities and developmental delay. Malformations in cortical development arise when neurons either fail to migrate properly from the germinal zones or fail to cease migration in the correct laminar position within the cortical plate. The Reelin signalling pathway is vital for correct neuronal positioning as loss of Reelin leads to a partially inverted cortex. The precise biological function of Reelin remains controversial and debate surrounds its role as a chemoattractant or stop signal for migrating neurons. To investigate this further we developed an in silico agent-based model of cortical layer formation. Using this model we tested four biologically plausible hypotheses for neuron motility and four biologically plausible hypotheses for the loss of neuron motility (conversion from migration. A matrix of 16 combinations of motility and conversion rules was applied against the known structure of mouse cortical layers in the wild-type cortex, the Reelin-null mutant, the Dab1-null mutant and a conditional Dab1 mutant. Using this approach, many combinations of motility and conversion mechanisms can be rejected. For example, the model does not support Reelin acting as a repelling or as a stopping signal. In contrast, the study lends very strong support to the notion that the glycoprotein Reelin acts as a chemoattractant for neurons. Furthermore, the most viable proposition for the conversion mechanism is one in which conversion is affected by a motile neuron sensing in the near vicinity neurons that have already converted. Therefore, this model helps elucidate the function of Reelin during neuronal migration and cortical development.

  11. Proliferative hypothalamic neurospheres express NPY, AGRP, POMC, CART and Orexin-A and differentiate to functional neurons.

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    Lígia Sousa-Ferreira

    Full Text Available Some pathological conditions with feeding pattern alterations, including obesity and Huntington disease (HD are associated with hypothalamic dysfunction and neuronal cell death. Additionally, the hypothalamus is a neurogenic region with the constitutive capacity to generate new cells of neuronal lineage, in adult rodents. The aim of the present work was to evaluate the expression of feeding-related neuropeptides in hypothalamic progenitor cells and their capacity to differentiate to functional neurons which have been described to be affected by hypothalamic dysfunction. Our study shows that hypothalamic progenitor cells from rat embryos grow as floating neurospheres and express the feeding-related neuropeptides Neuropeptide Y (NPY, Agouti-related Protein (AGRP, Pro-OpioMelanocortin (POMC, Cocaine-and-Amphetamine Responsive Transcript (CART and Orexin-A/Hypocretin-1. Moreover the relative mRNA expression of NPY and POMC increases during the expansion of hypothalamic neurospheres in proliferative conditions.Mature neurons were obtained from the differentiation of hypothalamic progenitor cells including NPY, AGRP, POMC, CART and Orexin-A positive neurons. Furthermore the relative mRNA expression of NPY, CART and Orexin-A increases after the differentiation of hypothalamic neurospheres. Similarly to the adult hypothalamic neurons the neurospheres-derived neurons express the glutamate transporter EAAT3. The orexigenic and anorexigenic phenotype of these neurons was identified by functional response to ghrelin and leptin hormones, respectively. This work demonstrates the presence of appetite-related neuropeptides in hypothalamic progenitor cells and neurons obtained from the differentiation of hypothalamic neurospheres, including the neuronal phenotypes that have been described by others as being affected by hypothalamic neurodegeneration. These in vitro models can be used to study hypothalamic progenitor cells aiming a therapeutic intervention to

  12. In search of neural mechanisms of mirror neuron dysfunction in schizophrenia: resting state functional connectivity approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaytseva, Yuliya; Bendova, Marie; Garakh, Zhanna; Tintera, Jaroslav; Rydlo, Jan; Spaniel, Filip; Horacek, Jiri

    2015-09-01

    It has been repeatedly shown that schizophrenia patients have immense alterations in goal-directed behaviour, social cognition, and social interactions, cognitive abilities that are presumably driven by the mirror neurons system (MNS). However, the neural bases of these deficits still remain unclear. Along with the task-related fMRI and EEG research tapping into the mirror neuron system, the characteristics of the resting state activity in the particular areas that encompass mirror neurons might be of interest as they obviously determine the baseline of the neuronal activity. Using resting state fMRI, we investigated resting state functional connectivity (FC) in four predefined brain structures, ROIs (inferior frontal gyrus, superior parietal lobule, premotor cortex and superior temporal gyrus), known for their mirror neurons activity, in 12 patients with first psychotic episode and 12 matched healthy individuals. As a specific hypothesis, based on the knowledge of the anatomical inputs of thalamus to all preselected ROIs, we have investigated the FC between thalamus and the ROIs. Of all ROIs included, seed-to-voxel connectivity analysis revealed significantly decreased FC only in left posterior superior temporal gyrus (STG) and the areas in visual cortex and cerebellum in patients as compared to controls. Using ROI-to-ROI analysis (thalamus and selected ROIs), we have found an increased FC of STG and bilateral thalamus whereas the FC of these areas was decreased in controls. Our results suggest that: (1) schizophrenia patients exhibit FC of STG which corresponds to the previously reported changes of superior temporal gyrus in schizophrenia and might contribute to the disturbances of specific functions, such as emotional processing or spatial awareness; (2) as the thalamus plays a pivotal role in the sensory gating, providing the filtering of the redundant stimulation, the observed hyperconnectivity between the thalami and the STGs in patients with schizophrenia

  13. Altered functional connectivity of prefrontal cortex in chronic heroin abusers

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yinbao Qi; Xianming Fu; Ruobing Qian; Chaoshi Niu; Xiangpin Wei

    2011-01-01

    In this study, we investigated alterations in the resting-state functional connectivity of the pre-frontal cortex in chronic heroin abusers using functional magnetic resonance imaging. We found that, compared with normal controls, in heroin abusers the left prefrontal cortex showed decreased functional connectivity with the left hippocampus, right anterior cingulate, left middle frontal gyrus, right middle frontal gyrus and right precuneus. However, the right prefrontal cortex showed decreased functional connectivity with the left orbital frontal cortex and the left middle frontal gyrus in chronic heroin abusers. These alterations of resting-state functional connectivity in the prefrontal cortices of heroin abusers suggest that their frontal executive neural network may be impaired, and that this may contribute to their continued heroin abuse and relapse after withdrawal.

  14. Neuronal Cell Death Induced by Mechanical Percussion Trauma in Cultured Neurons is not Preceded by Alterations in Glucose, Lactate and Glutamine Metabolism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayakumar, A. R.; Bak, L. K.; Rama Rao, K. V.; Waagepetersen, H.S.; Schousboe, A.; Norenberg, M.D.

    2016-01-01

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a devastating neurological disorder that usually presents in acute and chronic forms. Brain edema and associated increased intracranial pressure in the early phase following TBI are major consequences of acute trauma. On the other hand, neuronal injury, leading to neurobehavioral and cognitive impairments, that usually develop months to years after single or repetitive episodes of head trauma, are major consequences of chronic TBI. The molecular mechanisms responsible for TBI-induced injury, however, are unclear. Recent studies have suggested that early mitochondrial dysfunction and subsequent energy failure play a role in the pathogenesis of TBI. We therefore examined whether oxidative metabolism of 13C-labeled glucose, lactate or glutamine is altered early following in vitro mechanical percussion-induced trauma (5 atm) to neurons (4–24 h), and whether such events contribute to the development of neuronal injury. Cell viability was assayed using the release of the cytoplasmic enzyme lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), together with fluorescence-based cell staining (calcein and ethidium homodimer-1 for live and dead cells, respectively). Trauma had no effect on the LDH release in neurons from 1 h to 18 h. However, a significant increase in LDH release was detected at 24 h after trauma. Similar findings were identified when traumatized neurons were stained with fluorescent markers. Additionally 13C-labeling of glutamate showed a small, but statistically significant decrease at 14 h after trauma. However, trauma had no effect on the cycling ratio of the TCA cycle at any time-period examined. These findings indicate that trauma does not cause a disturbance in oxidative metabolism of any of the substrates used for neurons. Accordingly, such metabolic disturbance does not appear to contribute to the neuronal death in the early stages following trauma. PMID:26729365

  15. Levetiracetam differentially alters CD95 expression of neuronal cells and the mitochondrial membrane potential of immune and neuronal cells in vitro

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susannah K Rogers

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Epilepsy is a neurological seizure disorder that affects over 100 million people worldwide. Levetiracetam, either alone, as monotherapy, or as adjunctive treatment, is widely used to control certain types of seizures. Despite its increasing popularity as a relatively safe and effective anti-convulsive treatment option, its mechanism(s of action are poorly understood. Studies have suggested neuronal, glial, and immune mechanisms of action. Understanding the precise mechanisms of action of Levetiracetam would be extremely beneficial in helping to understand the processes involved in seizure generation and epilepsy. Moreover, a full understanding of these mechanisms would help to create more efficacious treatments while minimizing side effects. The current study examined the effects of Levetiracetam on the mitochondrial membrane potential of neuronal and non-neuronal cells, in vitro, in order to determine if Levetiracetam influences metabolic processes in these cell types. In addition, this study sought to address possible immune-mediated mechanisms by determining if Levetiracetam alters the expression of immune receptor-ligand pairs. The results show that Levetiracetam induces expression of CD95 and CD178 on NGF-treated C17.2 neuronal cells. The results also show that Levetiracetam increases mitochondrial membrane potential on C17.2 neuronal cells in the presence of nerve growth factor. In contrast, Levetiracetam decreases the mitochondrial membrane potential of splenocytes and this effect was dependent on intact invariant chain, thus implicating immune cell interactions. These results suggest that both neuronal and non-neuronal anti-epileptic activities of Levetiracetam involve control over energy metabolism, more specifically, mΔΨ. Future studies are needed to further investigate this potential mechanism of action.

  16. Defining inhibitory neurone function in respiratory circuits: opportunities with optogenetics?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdala, Ana Paula; Paton, Julian F R; Smith, Jeffrey C

    2015-07-15

    Pharmacological and mathematical modelling studies support the view that synaptic inhibition in mammalian brainstem respiratory circuits is essential for generating normal and stable breathing movements. GABAergic and glycinergic neurones are known components of these circuits but their precise functional roles have not been established, especially within key microcircuits of the respiratory pre-Bötzinger (pre-BötC) and Bötzinger (BötC) complexes involved in phasic control of respiratory pump and airway muscles. Here, we review briefly current concepts of relevant complexities of inhibitory synapses and the importance of synaptic inhibition in the operation of these microcircuits. We highlight results and limitations of classical pharmacological studies that have suggested critical functions of synaptic inhibition. We then explore the potential opportunities for optogenetic strategies that represent a promising new approach for interrogating function of inhibitory circuits, including a hypothetical wish list for optogenetic approaches to allow expedient application of this technology. We conclude that recent technical advances in optogenetics should provide a means to understand the role of functionally select and regionally confined subsets of inhibitory neurones in key respiratory circuits such as those in the pre-BötC and BötC.

  17. Altered Astrocyte-Neuron Interactions and Epileptogenesis in Tuberous Sclerosis Complex Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-06-01

    Tsc1-deficient astrocytes on neuronal morphology and neuronal activity associated with seizures. 2. KEY WORDS epilepsy, seizure, tuberous sclerosis...seizures; and F) increased spine density on recombinant pyramidal neuron dendrites prior to the onset of spontaneous seizures. What was accomplished: We...soma size and morphology , suggesting that these neurons possess a negative feedback mechanism that in part counteracts the effect of the TSC1 deletion

  18. Aluminum alters NMDA receptor 1A and 2A/B expression on neonatal hippocampal neurons in rats

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    Yuan Chia-Yi

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background High aluminum (Al content in certain infant formula raises the concern of possible Al toxicity on brain development of neonates during their vulnerable period of growing. Results of in vivo study showed that Al content of brain tissues reached to 74 μM when oral intake up to 1110 μM, 10 times of that in the hi-Al infant formula. Methods Utilizing a cultured neuron cells in vitro model, we have assessed Al influence on neuronal specific gene expression alteration by immunoblot and immunohistochemistry and neural proliferation rate changes by MTT assay. Results Microscopic images showed that the neurite outgrowth of hippocampal neurons increased along with the Al dosages (37, 74 μM Al (AlCl3. MTT results also indicated that Al increased neural cell viability. On the other hand, the immunocytochemistry staining suggested that the protein expressions of NMDAR 1A and NMDAR 2A/B decreased with the Al dosages (p Conclusion Treated hippocampal neurons with 37 and 74 μM of Al for 14 days increased neural cell viability, but hampered NMDAR 1A and NMDAR 2A/B expressions. It was suggested that Al exposure might alter the development of hippocampal neurons in neonatal rats.

  19. Editing the Neuronal Genome: a CRISPR View of Chromatin Regulation in Neuronal Development, Function, and Plasticity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Marty G.; West, Anne E.

    2016-01-01

    The dynamic orchestration of gene expression is crucial for the proper differentiation, function, and adaptation of cells. In the brain, transcriptional regulation underlies the incredible diversity of neuronal cell types and contributes to the ability of neurons to adapt their function to the environment. Recently, novel methods for genome and epigenome editing have begun to revolutionize our understanding of gene regulatory mechanisms. In particular, the clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)/Cas9 system has proven to be a particularly accessible and adaptable technique for genome engineering. Here, we review the use of CRISPR/Cas9 in neurobiology and discuss how these studies have advanced understanding of nervous system development and plasticity. We cover four especially salient applications of CRISPR/Cas9: testing the consequences of enhancer mutations, tagging genes and gene products for visualization in live cells, directly activating or repressing enhancers in vivo, and manipulating the epigenome. In each case, we summarize findings from recent studies and discuss evolving adaptations of the method. PMID:28018138

  20. Altered default mode network functional connectivity in schizotypal personality disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Qing; Shen, Jing; Wu, Jianlin; Yu, Xiao; Lou, Wutao; Fan, Hongyu; Shi, Lin; Wang, Defeng

    2014-12-01

    The default mode network (DMN) has been identified to play a critical role in many mental disorders, but such abnormalities have not yet been determined in patients with schizotypal personality disorder (SPD). The purpose of this study was to analyze the alteration of the DMN functional connectivity in subjects with (SPD) and compared it to healthy control subjects. Eighteen DSM-IV diagnosed SPD subjects (all male, average age: 19.7±0.9) from a pool of 3000 first year college students, and eighteen age and gender matched healthy control subjects were recruited (all male, average age: 20.3±0.9). Independent component analysis (ICA) was used to analyze the DMN functional connectivity alteration. Compared to the healthy control group, SPD subjects had significantly decreased functional connectivity in the frontal areas, including the superior and medial frontal gyrus, and greater functional connectivity in the bilateral superior temporal gyrus and sub-lobar regions, including the bilateral putamen and caudate. Compared to subjects with SPD, the healthy control group showed decreased functional connectivity in the bilateral posterior cingulate gyrus, but showed greater functional connectivity in the right transverse temporal gyrus and left middle temporal gyrus. The healthy control group also showed greater activation in the cerebellum compared to the SPD group. These findings suggest that DMN functional connectivity, particularly that involving cognitive or emotional regulation, is altered in SPD subjects, and thus may be helpful in studying schizophrenia.

  1. Maternal separation altered behavior and neuronal spine density without influencing amphetamine sensitization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muhammad, Arif; Kolb, Bryan

    2011-09-30

    We studied the long-term influence of maternal separation (MS) on periadolescent behavior, adult amphetamine (AMPH) sensitization, and structural plasticity in the corticolimbic regions in rats. Male and female pups, separated daily for 3h from the dam during postnatal day 3-21, were tested for periadolescent exploratory, emotional, cognitive, and social behaviors. The development and persistence of drug-induced behavioral sensitization were tested by repeated AMPH administration and a challenge, respectively. The spine density was examined in the nucleus accumbens (NAc), the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC), and the orbital frontal cortex (OFC) from Golgi-Cox stained neurons. The results showed that MS enhanced anxiety-like behavior in males. MS abolished the sex difference in playful attacks observed in controls with resultant feminization of male play behavior. Furthermore, the probability of complete rotation defense to face an attack was decreased in females. AMPH administration resulted in the development of behavioral sensitization that persisted at least for two weeks. Sensitization was not influenced by MS. MS increased the spine density in the NAc, the mPFC, and the OFC. Repeated AMPH administration increased the spine density in the NAc and the mPFC, and decreased it in the OFC. MS blocked the drug-induced alteration in these regions. In sum, MS during development influenced periadolescent behavior in males, and structurally reorganized cortical and subcortical brain regions without affecting AMPH-induced behavioral sensitization.

  2. Short-term enrichment makes male rats more attractive, more defensive and alters hypothalamic neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rupshi Mitra

    Full Text Available Innate behaviors are shaped by contingencies built during evolutionary history. On the other hand, environmental stimuli play a significant role in shaping behavior. In particular, a short period of environmental enrichment can enhance cognitive behavior, modify effects of stress on learned behaviors and induce brain plasticity. It is unclear if modulation by environment can extend to innate behaviors which are preserved by intense selection pressure. In the present report we investigate this issue by studying effects of relatively short (14-days environmental enrichment on two prominent innate behaviors in rats, avoidance of predator odors and ability of males to attract mates. We show that enrichment has strong effects on both the innate behaviors: a enriched males were more avoidant of a predator odor than non-enriched controls, and had a greater rise in corticosterone levels in response to the odor; and b had higher testosterone levels and were more attractive to females. Additionally, we demonstrate decrease in dendritic length of neurons of ventrolateral nucleus of hypothalamus, important for reproductive mate-choice and increase in the same in dorsomedial nucleus, important for defensive behavior. Thus, behavioral and hormonal observations provide evidence that a short period of environmental manipulation can alter innate behaviors, providing a good example of gene-environment interaction.

  3. Phytochemicals Perturb Membranes and Promiscuously Alter Protein Function

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ingólfsson, Helgi I; Thakur, Pratima; Herold, Karl F; Hobart, E Ashley; Ramsey, Nicole B; Periole, Xavier; de Jong, Djurre H; Zwama, Martijn; Yilmaz, Duygu; Hall, Katherine; Maretzky, Thorsten; Hemmings, Hugh C; Blobel, Carl; Marrink, Siewert J; Kocer, Armagan; Sack, Jon T; Andersen, Olaf S

    2014-01-01

    A wide variety of phytochemicals are consumed for their perceived health benefits. Many of these phytochemicals have been found to alter numerous cell functions, but the mechanisms underlying their biological activity tend to be poorly understood. Phenolic phytochemicals are particularly promiscuous

  4. Connectomics and neuroticism : an altered functional network organization

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Servaas, Michelle N; Geerligs, Linda; Renken, Remco J; Marsman, Jan-Bernard; Ormel, Johan; Riese, Harriëtte; Aleman, André

    2015-01-01

    The personality trait neuroticism is a potent risk marker for psychopathology. Although the neurobiological basis remains unclear, studies have suggested that alterations in connectivity may underlie it. Therefore, the aim of the current study was to shed more light on the functional network organiz

  5. The role of mitochondrial function in glutamate-dependent metabolism in neuronal cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smaili, S S; Ureshino, R P; Rodrigues, L; Rocha, K K; Carvalho, J T; Oseki, K T; Bincoletto, C; Lopes, G S; Hirata, H

    2011-12-01

    Glutamate is an important neurotransmitter in neurons and glial cells and it is one of the keys to the neuron-glial interaction in the brain. Glutamate transmission is strongly dependent on calcium homeostasis and on mitochondrial function. In the present work we presented several aspects related to the role of mitochondria in glutamate signaling and in brain diseases. We focused on glutamateinduced calcium signaling and its relation to the organelle dysfunction with cell death processes. In addition, we have discussed how alterations in this pathway may lead or aggravate a variety of neurodegenerative diseases. We compiled information on how mitochondria can influence cell fate during glutamate stimulation and calcium signaling. These organelles play a pivotal role in neuron and glial exchange, in synaptic plasticity and several pathological conditions related to Aging, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and Huntington's diseases. We have also presented autophagy as a mechanism activated during mitochondrial dysfunction which may function as a protective mechanism during injury. Furthermore, some new perspectives and approaches to treat these neurodegenerative diseases are offered and evaluated.

  6. Conservation of 5-HT1A receptor-mediated autoinhibition of serotonin (5-HT neurons in mice with altered 5-HT homeostasis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Naozumi eAraragi

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Firing activity of serotonin (5-HT neurons in the dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN is controlled by inhibitory somatodendritic 5-HT1A autoreceptors. This autoinhibitory mechanism is implicated in the etiology of disorders of emotion regulation, such as anxiety disorders and depression, as well as in the mechanism of antidepressant action. Here, we investigated how persistent alterations in brain 5-HT availability affect autoinhibition in two genetically modified mouse models lacking critical mediators of serotonergic transmission: 5-HT transporter knockout (Sert -/- and tryptophan hydroxylase-2 knockout (Tph2 -/- mice. The degree of autoinhibition was assessed by loose-seal cell-attached recording in DRN slices. First, application of the 5-HT1A-selective agonist R(+-8-hydroxy-2-(di-n-propylaminotetralin showed mild sensitization and marked desensitization of 5-HT1A receptors in Tph2 -/- mice and Sert -/- mice, respectively. While 5-HT neurons from Tph2 -/- mice did not display autoinhibition in response to L-tryptophan, autoinhibition of these neurons was unaltered in Sert -/- mice despite marked desensitization of their 5-HT1A autoreceptors. When the Tph2-dependent 5-HT synthesis step was bypassed by application of 5-hydroxy-L-tryptophan (5-HTP, neurons from both Tph2 -/- and Sert -/- mice decreased their firing rates at significantly lower concentrations of 5-HTP compared to wildtype controls. Our findings demonstrate that, as opposed to the prevalent view, sensitivity of somatodendritic 5-HT1A receptors does not predict the magnitude of 5-HT neuron autoinhibition. Changes in 5-HT1A receptor sensitivity may rather be seen as an adaptive mechanism to keep autoinhibition functioning in response to extremely altered levels of extracellular 5-HT resulting from targeted inactivation of mediators of serotonergic signaling.

  7. Extinction order and altered community structure rapidly disrupt ecosystem functioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larsen, Trond H; Williams, Neal M; Kremen, Claire

    2005-05-01

    By causing extinctions and altering community structure, anthropogenic disturbances can disrupt processes that maintain ecosystem integrity. However, the relationship between community structure and ecosystem functioning in natural systems is poorly understood. Here we show that habitat loss appeared to disrupt ecosystem functioning by affecting extinction order, species richness and abundance. We studied pollination by bees in a mosaic of agricultural and natural habitats in California and dung burial by dung beetles on recently created islands in Venezuela. We found that large-bodied bee and beetle species tended to be both most extinction-prone and most functionally efficient, contributing to rapid functional loss. Simulations confirmed that extinction order led to greater disruption of function than predicted by random species loss. Total abundance declined with richness and also appeared to contribute to loss of function. We demonstrate conceptually and empirically how the non-random response of communities to disturbance can have unexpectedly large functional consequences.

  8. In actio optophysiological analyses reveal functional diversification of dopaminergic neurons in the nematode C. elegans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanimoto, Yuki; Zheng, Ying Grace; Fei, Xianfeng; Fujie, Yukako; Hashimoto, Koichi; Kimura, Koutarou D.

    2016-05-01

    Many neuronal groups such as dopamine-releasing (dopaminergic) neurons are functionally divergent, although the details of such divergence are not well understood. Dopamine in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans modulates various neural functions and is released from four left-right pairs of neurons. The terminal identities of these dopaminergic neurons are regulated by the same genetic program, and previous studies have suggested that they are functionally redundant. In this study, however, we show functional divergence within the dopaminergic neurons of C. elegans. Because dopaminergic neurons of the animals were supposedly activated by mechanical stimulus upon entry into a lawn of their food bacteria, we developed a novel integrated microscope system that can auto-track a freely-moving (in actio) C. elegans to individually monitor and stimulate the neuronal activities of multiple neurons. We found that only head-dorsal pair of dopaminergic neurons (CEPD), but not head-ventral or posterior pairs, were preferentially activated upon food entry. In addition, the optogenetic activation of CEPD neurons alone exhibited effects similar to those observed upon food entry. Thus, our results demonstrated functional divergence in the genetically similar dopaminergic neurons, which may provide a new entry point toward understanding functional diversity of neurons beyond genetic terminal identification.

  9. In actio optophysiological analyses reveal functional diversification of dopaminergic neurons in the nematode C. elegans

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanimoto, Yuki; Zheng, Ying Grace; Fei, Xianfeng; Fujie, Yukako; Hashimoto, Koichi; Kimura, Koutarou D.

    2016-01-01

    Many neuronal groups such as dopamine-releasing (dopaminergic) neurons are functionally divergent, although the details of such divergence are not well understood. Dopamine in the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans modulates various neural functions and is released from four left-right pairs of neurons. The terminal identities of these dopaminergic neurons are regulated by the same genetic program, and previous studies have suggested that they are functionally redundant. In this study, however, we show functional divergence within the dopaminergic neurons of C. elegans. Because dopaminergic neurons of the animals were supposedly activated by mechanical stimulus upon entry into a lawn of their food bacteria, we developed a novel integrated microscope system that can auto-track a freely-moving (in actio) C. elegans to individually monitor and stimulate the neuronal activities of multiple neurons. We found that only head-dorsal pair of dopaminergic neurons (CEPD), but not head-ventral or posterior pairs, were preferentially activated upon food entry. In addition, the optogenetic activation of CEPD neurons alone exhibited effects similar to those observed upon food entry. Thus, our results demonstrated functional divergence in the genetically similar dopaminergic neurons, which may provide a new entry point toward understanding functional diversity of neurons beyond genetic terminal identification. PMID:27193056

  10. Palmitate alters the rhythmic expression of molecular clock genes and orexigenic neuropeptide Y mRNA levels within immortalized, hypothalamic neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fick, Laura J; Fick, Gordon H; Belsham, Denise D

    2011-09-30

    The control of energy homeostasis within the hypothalamus is under the regulated control of homeostatic hormones, nutrients and the expression of neuropeptides that alter feeding behavior. Elevated levels of palmitate, a predominant saturated fatty acid in diet and fatty acid biosynthesis, alter cellular function. For instance, a key mechanism involved in the development of insulin resistance is lipotoxicity, through increased circulating saturated fatty acids. Although many studies have begun to determine the underlying mechanisms of lipotoxicity in peripheral tissues, little is known about the effects of excess lipids in the brain. To determine these mechanisms we used an immortalized, clonal, hypothalamic cell line, mHypoE-44, to demonstrate that palmitate directly alters the expression of molecular clock components, by increasing Bmal1 and Clock, or by decreasing Per2, and Rev-erbα, their mRNA levels and altering their rhythmic period within individual neurons. We found that these neurons endogenously express the orexigenic neuropeptides NPY and AgRP, thus we determined that palmitate administration alters the mRNA expression of these neuropeptides as well. Palmitate treatment causes a significant increase in NPY mRNA levels and significantly alters the phase of rhythmic expression. We explored the link between AMPK and the expression of neuropeptide Y using the AMPK inhibitor compound C and the AMP analog AICAR. AMPK inhibition decreased NPY mRNA. AICAR also elevated basal NPY, but prevented the palmitate-mediated increase in NPY mRNA levels. We postulate that this palmitate-mediated increase in NPY and AgRP synthesis may initiate a detrimental positive feedback loop leading to increased energy consumption.

  11. Hepatic alterations are accompanied by changes to bile acid transporter-expressing neurons in the hypothalamus after traumatic brain injury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nizamutdinov, Damir; DeMorrow, Sharon; McMillin, Matthew; Kain, Jessica; Mukherjee, Sanjib; Zeitouni, Suzanne; Frampton, Gabriel; Bricker, Paul Clint S.; Hurst, Jacob; Shapiro, Lee A.

    2017-01-01

    Annually, there are over 2 million incidents of traumatic brain injury (TBI) and treatment options are non-existent. While many TBI studies have focused on the brain, peripheral contributions involving the digestive and immune systems are emerging as factors involved in the various symptomology associated with TBI. We hypothesized that TBI would alter hepatic function, including bile acid system machinery in the liver and brain. The results show activation of the hepatic acute phase response by 2 hours after TBI, hepatic inflammation by 6 hours after TBI and a decrease in hepatic transcription factors, Gli 1, Gli 2, Gli 3 at 2 and 24 hrs after TBI. Bile acid receptors and transporters were decreased as early as 2 hrs after TBI until at least 24 hrs after TBI. Quantification of bile acid transporter, ASBT-expressing neurons in the hypothalamus, revealed a significant decrease following TBI. These results are the first to show such changes following a TBI, and are compatible with previous studies of the bile acid system in stroke models. The data support the emerging idea of a systemic influence to neurological disorders and point to the need for future studies to better define specific mechanisms of action. PMID:28106051

  12. Genetic control of adult neurogenesis: interplay of differentiation, proliferation and survival modulates new neurons function and memory circuits.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felice eTirone

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Within the hippocampal circuitry, the basic function of the dentate gyrus is to transform the memory input coming from the enthorinal cortex into sparse and categorized outputs to CA3, in this way separating related memory information. New neurons generated in the dentate gyrus during adulthood appear to facilitate this process, allowing a better separation between closely spaced memories (pattern separation.The evidence underlying this model has been gathered essentially by ablating the newly adult-generated neurons. This approach, however, does not allow monitoring of the integration of new neurons into memory circuits and is likely to set in motion compensatory circuits, possibly leading to an underestimation of the role of new neurons. Here we review the background of the basic function of the hippocampus and of the known properties of new adult-generated neurons. In this context, we analyze the cognitive performance in mouse models generated by us and others, with modified expression of the genes Btg2-1, Pten, BMP4, etc., where new neurons underwent a change in their differentiation rate or a partial decrease of their proliferation or survival rate rather than ablation. The effects of these modifications are equal or greater than full ablation, suggesting that the architecture of circuits, as it unfolds from the interaction between existing and new neurons, can have a greater functional impact than the sheer number of new neurons. A model attempting to measure and correlate the extent of the total alterations in the process of neurogenesis with the impairment of memory is provided.

  13. An information theoretic approach to the functional classification of neurons

    CERN Document Server

    Schneidman, E; Berry, M J; Schneidman, Elad; Bialek, William; Berry, Michael J.

    2002-01-01

    A population of neurons typically exhibits a broad diversity of responses to sensory inputs. The intuitive notion of functional classification is that cells can be clustered so that most of the diversity is captured in the identity of the clusters rather than by individuals within clusters. We show how this intuition can be made precise using information theory, without any need to introduce a metric on the space of stimuli or responses. Applied to the retinal ganglion cells of the salamander, this approach recovers classical results, but also provides clear evidence for subclasses beyond those identified previously. Further, we find that each of the ganglion cells is functionally unique, and that even within the same subclass only a few spikes are needed to reliably distinguish between cells.

  14. Mutation in the myelin proteolipid protein gene alters BK and SK channel function in the caudal medulla

    OpenAIRE

    Mayer, Catherine A.; Macklin, Wendy B.; Avishai, Nanthawan; Balan, Kannan; Wilson, Christopher G.; Miller, Martha J.

    2009-01-01

    Proteolipid protein (Plp) gene mutation in rodents causes severe CNS dysmyelination, early death, and lethal hypoxic ventilatory depression (Miller et al. 2004). To determine if Plp mutation alters neuronal function critical for control of breathing, the nucleus tractus solitarii (nTS) of four rodent strains were studied: myelin deficient rats (MD), myelin synthesis deficient (Plpmsd), and Plpnull mice, as well as shiverer (Mbpshi) mice, a myelin basic protein mutant. Current-voltage relation...

  15. Altered morphologies and functions of the olfactory bulb and hippocampus induced by miR-30c

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tingting eSun

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Adult neurogenesis is considered to contribute to a certain degree of plasticity for the brain. However, the effects of adult-born neurons on the brain are still largely unknown. Here, we specifically altered the expression of miR-30c in the subventricular zone (SVZ and dentate gyrus (DG by stereotaxic injection with their respective up-and down-regulated lentiviruses. Results showed an increased level of miR-30c enhanced adult neurogenesis by prompting cell-cycles of stem cells, whereas down-regulated miR-30c led to the opposite results. When these effects of miR-30c lasted for three months, we detected significant morphological changes in the olfactory bulb (OB and lineage alteration in the hippocampus. Tests of olfactory sensitivity and associative and spatial memory showed that a certain amount of adult-born neurons are essential for the normal functions of the OB and hippocampus, but there also exist redundant newborn neurons that do not further improve the functioning of these areas. Our study revealed the interactions between miRNA, adult neurogenesis, brain morphology and function, and this provides a novel insight into understanding the role of newborn neurons in the adult brain.

  16. Comparative functional expression of nAChR subtypes in rodent DRG neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nathan J. Smith

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available We investigated the functional expression of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs in heterogeneous populations of dissociated rat and mouse lumbar dorsal root ganglion (DRG neurons by calcium imaging. By this experimental approach, it is possible to investigate the functional expression of multiple receptor and ion-channel subtypes across more than 100 neuronal and glial cells simultaneously. Based on nAChR expression, DRG neurons could be divided into four subclasses: 1 neurons that express predominantly alpha3beta4 and alpha6beta4 nAChRs; 2 neurons that express predominantly alpha7 nAChRs; 3 neurons that express a combination of alpha3beta4/alpha6beta4 and alpha7 nAChRs; and 4 neurons that do not express nAChRs. In this comparative study, the same four neuronal subclasses were observed in mouse and rat DRG. However, the expression frequency differed between species: substantially more rat DRG neurons were in the first three subclasses than mouse DRG neurons, at all developmental time points tested in our study. Approximately 70-80% of rat DRG neurons expressed functional nAChRs, in contrast to only ~15-30% of mouse DRG neurons. Our study also demonstrated functional coupling between nAChRs, voltage-gated calcium channels and mitochondrial Ca2+ transport in discrete subsets of DRG neurons. In contrast to the expression of nAChRs in DRG neurons, we demonstrated that a subset of non-neuronal DRG cells expressed muscarinic acetylcholine receptors (mAChRs and not nAChRs. The general approach to comparative cellular neurobiology outlined in this paper has the potential to better integrate molecular and systems neuroscience by uncovering the spectrum of neuronal subclasses present in a given cell population and the functionally integrated signaling components expressed in each subclass.

  17. Structural and functional diversity of native brain neuronal nicotinic receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gotti, Cecilia; Clementi, Francesco; Fornari, Alice; Gaimarri, Annalisa; Guiducci, Stefania; Manfredi, Irene; Moretti, Milena; Pedrazzi, Patrizia; Pucci, Luca; Zoli, Michele

    2009-10-01

    Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are a family of ligand-gated ion channels present in the central and peripheral nervous systems, that are permeable to mono- and divalent cations. They share a common basic structure but their pharmacological and functional properties arise from the wide range of different subunit combinations making up distinctive subtypes. nAChRs are involved in many physiological functions in the central and peripheral nervous systems, and are the targets of the widely used drug of abuse nicotine. In addition to tobacco dependence, changes in their number and/or function are associated with neuropsychiatric disorders, ranging from epilepsy to dementia. Although some of the neural circuits involved in the acute and chronic effects of nicotine have been identified, much less is known about which native nAChR subtypes are involved in specific physiological functions and pathophysiological conditions. We briefly review some recent findings concerning the structure and function of native nAChRs, focusing on the subtypes identified in the mesostriatal and habenulo-interpeduncular pathways, two systems involved in nicotine reinforcement and withdrawal. We also discuss recent findings concerning the effect of chronic nicotine on the expression of native subtypes.

  18. Prenatal stress alters amygdala functional connectivity in preterm neonates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheinost, Dustin; Kwon, Soo Hyun; Lacadie, Cheryl; Sze, Gordon; Sinha, Rajita; Constable, R Todd; Ment, Laura R

    2016-01-01

    Exposure to prenatal and early-life stress results in alterations in neural connectivity and an increased risk for neuropsychiatric disorders. In particular, alterations in amygdala connectivity have emerged as a common effect across several recent studies. However, the impact of prenatal stress exposure on the functional organization of the amygdala has yet to be explored in the prematurely-born, a population at high risk for neuropsychiatric disorders. We test the hypothesis that preterm birth and prenatal exposure to maternal stress alter functional connectivity of the amygdala using two independent cohorts. The first cohort is used to establish the effects of preterm birth and consists of 12 very preterm neonates and 25 term controls, all without prenatal stress exposure. The second is analyzed to establish the effects of prenatal stress exposure and consists of 16 extremely preterm neonates with prenatal stress exposure and 10 extremely preterm neonates with no known prenatal stress exposure. Standard resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging and seed connectivity methods are used. When compared to term controls, very preterm neonates show significantly reduced connectivity between the amygdala and the thalamus, the hypothalamus, the brainstem, and the insula (p cortex (p subcortical regions is decreased in preterm neonates compared to term controls. In addition, these data, for the first time, suggest that prenatal stress exposure amplifies these decreases.

  19. Antipsychotic drugs alter neuronal development including ALM neuroblast migration and PLM axonal outgrowth in Caenorhabditis elegans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donohoe, Dallas R; Weeks, Kathrine; Aamodt, Eric J; Dwyer, Donard S

    2008-01-01

    Antipsychotic drugs are increasingly being prescribed for children and adolescents, and are used in pregnant women without a clear demonstration of safety in these populations. Global effects of these drugs on neurodevelopment (e.g., decreased brain size) have been reported in rats, but detailed knowledge about neuronal effects and mechanisms of action are lacking. Here we report on the evaluation of a comprehensive panel of antipsychotic drugs in a model organism (Caenorhabditis elegans) that is widely used to study neuronal development. Specifically, we examined the effects of the drugs on neuronal migration and axonal outgrowth in mechanosensory neurons visualized with green fluorescent protein expressed from the mec-3 promoter. Clozapine, fluphenazine, and haloperidol produced deficits in the development and migration of ALM neurons and axonal outgrowth in PLM neurons. The defects included failure of neuroblasts to migrate to the proper location, and excessive growth of axons past their normal termination point, together with abnormal morphological features of the processes. Although the antipsychotic drugs are potent antagonists of dopamine and serotonin receptors, the neurodevelopmental deficits were not rescued by co-incubation with serotonin or the dopaminergic agonist, quinpirole. Other antipsychotic drugs, risperidone, aripiprazole, quetiapine, trifluoperazine and olanzapine, also produced modest, but detectable, effects on neuronal development. This is the first report that antipsychotic drugs interfere with neuronal migration and axonal outgrowth in a developing nervous system.

  20. Neuron-Specific Deletion of the Nf2 Tumor Suppressor Impairs Functional Nerve Regeneration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schulz, Alexander; Büttner, Robert; Toledo, Andrea; Baader, Stephan L.; von Maltzahn, Julia; Irintchev, Andrey; Bauer, Reinhard; Morrison, Helen

    2016-01-01

    In contrast to axons of the central nervous system (CNS), axons of the peripheral nervous system (PNS) show better, but still incomplete and often slow regeneration following injury. The tumor suppressor protein merlin, mutated in the hereditary tumor syndrome Neurofibromatosis type 2 (NF2), has recently been shown to have RhoA regulatory functions in PNS neurons—in addition to its well-characterized, growth-inhibitory activity in Schwann cells. Here we report that the conditional knockout of merlin in PNS neurons leads to impaired functional recovery of mice following sciatic nerve crush injury, in a gene-dosage dependent manner. Gross anatomical or electrophysiological alterations of sciatic nerves could not be detected. However, correlating with attenuated RhoA activation due to merlin deletion, ultrastructural analysis of nerve samples indicated enhanced sprouting of axons with reduced caliber size and increased myelination compared to wildtype animals. We conclude that deletion of the tumor suppressor merlin in the neuronal compartment of peripheral nerves results in compromised functional regeneration after injury. This mechanism could explain the clinical observation that NF2 patients suffer from higher incidences of slowly recovering facial nerve paralysis after vestibular schwannoma surgery. PMID:27467574

  1. Sleep deprivation and hippocampal vulnerability: changes in neuronal plasticity, neurogenesis and cognitive function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kreutzmann, J C; Havekes, R; Abel, T; Meerlo, P

    2015-11-19

    Despite the ongoing fundamental controversy about the physiological function of sleep, there is general consensus that sleep benefits neuronal plasticity, which ultimately supports brain function and cognition. In agreement with this are numerous studies showing that sleep deprivation (SD) results in learning and memory impairments. Interestingly, such impairments appear to occur particularly when these learning and memory processes require the hippocampus, suggesting that this brain region may be particularly sensitive to the consequences of sleep loss. Although the molecular mechanisms underlying sleep and memory formation remain to be investigated, available evidence suggests that SD may impair hippocampal neuronal plasticity and memory processes by attenuating intracellular cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP)-protein kinase A (PKA) signaling which may lead to alterations in cAMP response element binding protein (CREB)-mediated gene transcription, neurotrophic signaling, and glutamate receptor expression. When restricted sleep becomes a chronic condition, it causes a reduction of hippocampal cell proliferation and neurogenesis, which may eventually lead to a reduction in hippocampal volume. Ultimately, by impairing hippocampal plasticity and function, chronically restricted and disrupted sleep contributes to cognitive disorders and psychiatric diseases.

  2. HIV-1 infected and immune competent mononuclear phagocytes induce quantitative alterations in neuronal dendritic arbor: relevance for HIV-1-associated dementia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, J; Thylin, M R; Cotter, R L; Lopez, A L; Ghorpade, A; Persidsky, Y; Xiong, H; Leisman, G B; Che, M H; Gendelman, H E

    2001-10-01

    Neuronal loss, alterations in dendritic arbor, and decreased synaptic density, in infected brain tissue, are neuropathological signatures of HIV-1-associated dementia (HAD). Brain mononuclear phagocyte (MP) (macrophage and microglia) secretory products can effect neuronal compromise, although the underlying mechanism(s) remain incompletely defined. To these ends, we quantitatively assessed the effects of virus-infected and/or immune activated MP secretory products on multiple aspects of neuronal morphology. Rat cortical and hippocampal neurons were exposed to secretory products from HIV-1-infected and lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-activated human monocyte-derived macrophage (MDM). Our assays for alterations in neuronal dendritic arbor and cell loss included the quantification of neurofilament (NF), neuron-specific enolase (NSE), and MAP-2 by ELISA and cellular morphology. MDM conditioned media (MCM) enhanced neuronal survival. HIV-1 infection or activation by LPS had modest neurotoxic effects. In contrast, the combination of HIV-1 infection and activation of MDM produced significant neurotoxicity. Such MDM products altered dendritic arbor, decreased synaptic density, and increased LDH release. Comparable neurotrophic/toxic responses were observed when neurons were exposed to MCM collected from 12 separate human donors. Similar responses were observed with MCM from human fetal microglia, further supporting the role of HIV-1-infected and immune-activated brain MP in the overall neurotoxic responses. This work provides quantitative measures of neuronal damage by which virus infected and activated MP can elicit neuronal injury in HAD.

  3. Β-amyloid 1-42 oligomers impair function of human embryonic stem cell-derived forebrain cholinergic neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Linn Wicklund

    Full Text Available Cognitive impairment in Alzheimer's disease (AD patients is associated with a decline in the levels of growth factors, impairment of axonal transport and marked degeneration of basal forebrain cholinergic neurons (BFCNs. Neurogenesis persists in the adult human brain, and the stimulation of regenerative processes in the CNS is an attractive prospect for neuroreplacement therapy in neurodegenerative diseases such as AD. Currently, it is still not clear how the pathophysiological environment in the AD brain affects stem cell biology. Previous studies investigating the effects of the β-amyloid (Aβ peptide on neurogenesis have been inconclusive, since both neurogenic and neurotoxic effects on progenitor cell populations have been reported. In this study, we treated pluripotent human embryonic stem (hES cells with nerve growth factor (NGF as well as with fibrillar and oligomeric Aβ1-40 and Aβ1-42 (nM-µM concentrations and thereafter studied the differentiation in vitro during 28-35 days. The process applied real time quantitative PCR, immunocytochemistry as well as functional studies of intracellular calcium signaling. Treatment with NGF promoted the differentiation into functionally mature BFCNs. In comparison to untreated cells, oligomeric Aβ1-40 increased the number of functional neurons, whereas oligomeric Aβ1-42 suppressed the number of functional neurons. Interestingly, oligomeric Aβ exposure did not influence the number of hES cell-derived neurons compared with untreated cells, while in contrast fibrillar Aβ1-40 and Aβ1-42 induced gliogenesis. These findings indicate that Aβ1-42 oligomers may impair the function of stem cell-derived neurons. We propose that it may be possible for future AD therapies to promote the maturation of functional stem cell-derived neurons by altering the brain microenvironment with trophic support and by targeting different aggregation forms of Aβ.

  4. MyosinV controls PTEN function and neuronal cell size.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Diepen, Michiel T; Parsons, Maddy; Downes, C Peter; Leslie, Nicholas R; Hindges, Robert; Eickholt, Britta J

    2009-10-01

    The tumour suppressor PTEN can inhibit cell proliferation and migration as well as control cell growth, in different cell types. PTEN functions predominately as a lipid phosphatase, converting PtdIns(3,4,5)P(3) to PtdIns(4,5)P(2), thereby antagonizing PI(3)K (phosphoinositide 3-kinase) and its established downstream effector pathways. However, much is unclear concerning the mechanisms that regulate PTEN movement to the cell membrane, which is necessary for its activity towards PtdIns(3,4,5)P(3) (Refs 3, 4, 5). Here we show a requirement for functional motor proteins in the control of PI3K signalling, involving a previously unknown association between PTEN and myosinV. FRET (Förster resonance energy transfer) measurements revealed that PTEN interacts directly with myosinV, which is dependent on PTEN phosphorylation mediated by CK2 and/or GSK3. Inactivation of myosinV-transport function in neurons increased cell size, which, in line with known attributes of PTEN-loss, required PI(3)K and mTor. Our data demonstrate a myosin-based transport mechanism that regulates PTEN function, providing new insights into the signalling networks regulating cell growth.

  5. Distribution of neurons in functional areas of the mouse cerebral cortex reveals quantitatively different cortical zones.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herculano-Houzel, Suzana; Watson, Charles; Paxinos, George

    2013-01-01

    How are neurons distributed along the cortical surface and across functional areas? Here we use the isotropic fractionator (Herculano-Houzel and Lent, 2005) to analyze the distribution of neurons across the entire isocortex of the mouse, divided into 18 functional areas defined anatomically. We find that the number of neurons underneath a surface area (the N/A ratio) varies 4.5-fold across functional areas and neuronal density varies 3.2-fold. The face area of S1 contains the most neurons, followed by motor cortex and the primary visual cortex. Remarkably, while the distribution of neurons across functional areas does not accompany the distribution of surface area, it mirrors closely the distribution of cortical volumes-with the exception of the visual areas, which hold more neurons than expected for their volume. Across the non-visual cortex, the volume of individual functional areas is a shared linear function of their number of neurons, while in the visual areas, neuronal densities are much higher than in all other areas. In contrast, the 18 functional areas cluster into three different zones according to the relationship between the N/A ratio and cortical thickness and neuronal density: these three clusters can be called visual, sensory, and, possibly, associative. These findings are remarkably similar to those in the human cerebral cortex (Ribeiro et al., 2013) and suggest that, like the human cerebral cortex, the mouse cerebral cortex comprises two zones that differ in how neurons form the cortical volume, and three zones that differ in how neurons are distributed underneath the cortical surface, possibly in relation to local differences in connectivity through the white matter. Our results suggest that beyond the developmental divide into visual and non-visual cortex, functional areas initially share a common distribution of neurons along the parenchyma that become delimited into functional areas according to the pattern of connectivity established later.

  6. Magnesium regulates neural stem cell proliferation in the mouse hippocampus by altering mitochondrial function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jia, Shanshan; Mou, Chengzhi; Ma, Yihe; Han, Ruijie; Li, Xue

    2016-04-01

    In the adult brain, neural stem cells from the subgranular zone (SGZ) of the hippocampus and the subventricular zone (SVZ) of the cortex progress through the following five developmental stages: radial glia-like cells, neural progenitor cells, neuroblasts, immature neurons, and mature neurons. These developmental stages are linked to both neuronal microenvironments and energy metabolism. Neurogenesis is restricted and has been demonstrated to arise from tissue microenvironments. We determined that magnesium, a key nutrient in cellular energy metabolism, affects neural stem cell (NSC) proliferation in cells derived from the embryonic hippocampus by influencing mitochondrial function. Densities of proliferating cells and NSCs both showed their highest values at 0.8 mM [Mg(2+) ]o , whereas lower proliferation rates were observed at 0.4 and 1.4 mM [Mg(2+) ]o . The numbers and sizes of the neurospheres reached the maximum at 0.8 mM [Mg(2+) ]o and were weaker under both low (0.4 mM) and high (1.4 mM) concentrations of magnesium. In vitro experimental evidence demonstrates that extracellular magnesium regulates the number of cultured hippocampal NSCs, affecting both magnesium homeostasis and mitochondrial function. Our findings indicate that the effect of [Mg(2+) ]o on NSC proliferation may lie downstream of alterations in mitochondrial function because mitochondrial membrane potential was highest in the NSCs in the moderate [Mg(2+) ]o (0.8 mM) group and lower in both the low (0.4 mM) and high (1.4 mM) [Mg(2+) ]o groups. Overall, these findings demonstrate a new function for magnesium in the brain in the regulation of hippocampal neural stem cells: affecting their cellular energy metabolism.

  7. Role of CRF in stress-related alterations of gastric and colonic motor function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taché, Y; Mönnikes, H; Bonaz, B; Rivier, J

    1993-10-29

    Major advances have been made in the understanding of the pathophysiology of stress-related alteration of gut function. A wealth of information indicates that CRF is involved in the central mechanisms by which stress inhibits gastric emptying while stimulating colonic motor function. CRF acts in the PVN to trigger both the inhibition of gastric emptying and the stimulation of colonic motor function in response to stress, in addition to previously established endocrine and behavioral responses. Preliminary evidence exists that CRF acts in the locus coeruleus to induce a selective stimulation of colonic transit without influencing gastric emptying. The central actions of CRF to alter gastric and colonic motor function are conveyed by autonomic pathways and are unrelated to the associated stimulation of pituitary hormone secretion. The demonstration that central CRF plays a role in mediating gastric stasis resulting from surgery, peritonitis or high levels of central interleukin-1 provides new insight into the mechanisms involved in gastric ileus induced postoperatively or by infectious disease. Likewise, the demonstration that CRF in the PVN and locus coeruleus induce the anxiogenic and colonic motor responses to stress and that colonic distention activates neurons in the locus coeruleus opens new avenues for the understanding of the pathogenesis of a subset of IBS patients with colonic hypersensitivity associated with psychopathological disturbance and diarrhea-predominant symptoms.

  8. Estrogen protects neuronal cells from amyloid beta-induced apoptosis via regulation of mitochondrial proteins and function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iwamoto Sean

    2006-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Neurodegeneration in Alzheimer's disease is associated with increased apoptosis and parallels increased levels of amyloid beta, which can induce neuronal apoptosis. Estrogen exposure prior to neurotoxic insult of hippocampal neurons promotes neuronal defence and survival against neurodegenerative insults including amyloid beta. Although all underlying molecular mechanisms of amyloid beta neurotoxicity remain undetermined, mitochondrial dysfunction, including altered calcium homeostasis and Bcl-2 expression, are involved in neurodegenerative vulnerability. Results In this study, we investigated the mechanism of 17β-estradiol-induced prevention of amyloid beta-induced apoptosis of rat hippocampal neuronal cultures. Estradiol treatment prior to amyloid beta exposure significantly reduced the number of apoptotic neurons and the associated rise in resting intracellular calcium levels. Amyloid beta exposure provoked down regulation of a key antiapoptotic protein, Bcl-2, and resulted in mitochondrial translocation of Bax, a protein known to promote cell death, and subsequent release of cytochrome c. E2 pretreatment inhibited the amyloid beta-induced decrease in Bcl-2 expression, translocation of Bax to the mitochondria and subsequent release of cytochrome c. Further implicating the mitochondria as a target of estradiol action, in vivo estradiol treatment enhanced the respiratory function of whole brain mitochondria. In addition, estradiol pretreatment protected isolated mitochondria against calcium-induced loss of respiratory function. Conclusion Therefore, we propose that estradiol pretreatment protects against amyloid beta neurotoxicity by limiting mitochondrial dysfunction via activation of antiapoptotic mechanisms.

  9. Neuronal development and axon growth are altered by glyphosate through a WNT non-canonical signaling pathway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coullery, Romina P; Ferrari, María E; Rosso, Silvana B

    2016-01-01

    The growth and morphological differentiation of neurons are critical events in the establishment of proper neuronal connectivity and functioning. The developing nervous system is highly susceptible to damage caused by exposure to environmental contaminants. Glyphosate-containing herbicides are the most used agrochemicals in the world, particularly on genetically modified plants. Previous studies have demonstrated that glyphosate induces neurotoxicity in mammals. Therefore, its action mechanism on the nervous system needs to be determined. In this study, we report about impaired neuronal development caused by glyphosate exposure. Particularly, we observed that the initial axonal differentiation and growth of cultured neurons is affected by glyphosate since most treated cells remained undifferentiated after 1 day in culture. Although they polarized at 2 days in vitro, they elicited shorter and unbranched axons and they also developed less complex dendritic arbors compared to controls. To go further, we attempted to identify the cellular mechanism by which glyphosate affected neuronal morphology. Biochemical approaches revealed that glyphosate led to a decrease in Wnt5a level, a key factor for the initial neurite development and maturation, as well as inducing a down-regulation of CaMKII activity. This data suggests that the morphological defects would likely be a consequence of the decrease in both Wnt5a expression and CaMKII activity induced by glyphosate. Additionally, these changes might be reflected in a subsequent neuronal dysfunction. Therefore, our findings highlight the importance of establishing rigorous control on the use of glyphosate-based herbicides in order to protect mammals' health.

  10. Constrained Synaptic Connectivity in Functional Mammalian Neuronal Networks Grown on Patterned Surfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourdieu, Laurent; Wyart, Claire; Ybert, Christophe; Herr, Catherine; Chatenay, Didier

    2002-03-01

    The use of ordered neuronal networks in vitro is a promising approach to study the development and the activity of neuronal assemblies. However in previous attempts, sufficient growth control and physiological maturation of neurons could not be achieved. We describe an original protocol in which polylysine patterns confine the adhesion of cellular bodies to prescribed spots and the neuritic growth to thin lines. Hippocampal neurons are maintained healthy in serum free medium up to five weeks in vitro. Electrophysiology and immunochemistry show that neurons exhibit mature excitatory and inhibitory synapses and calcium imaging reveals spontaneous bursting activity of neurons in isolated networks. Neurons in these geometrical networks form functional synapses preferentially to their first neighbors. We have therefore established a simple and robust protocol to constrain both the location of neuronal cell bodies and their pattern of connectivity.

  11. Spinocerebellar Ataxia Type 13 Mutant Potassium Channel Alters Neuronal Excitability and Causes Locomotor Deficits in Zebrafish

    OpenAIRE

    Issa, Fadi A; Mazzochi, Christopher; Mock, Allan F; Papazian, Diane M.

    2011-01-01

    Whether changes in neuronal excitability can cause neurodegenerative disease in the absence of other factors such as protein aggregation is unknown. Mutations in the Kv3.3 voltage-gated K+ channel cause spinocerebellar ataxia type-13 (SCA13), a human autosomal dominant disease characterized by locomotor impairment and the death of cerebellar neurons. Kv3.3 channels facilitate repetitive, high-frequency firing of action potentials, suggesting that pathogenesis in SCA13 is triggered by changes ...

  12. Neurofibromatosis: The role of guanosine triphosphatase activating proteins in sensory neuron function

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Cynthia M. Hingtgen

    2008-01-01

    Neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) is a common autosomal dominant disease characterized by formation of multiple benign and malignant tumors. People with this disorder also experience chronic pain, which can be disabling. Neurofibromin, the protein product of the Nfl gene, is a gnanosine triphosphatase activating protein (GAP) for p21Ras (Ras). Loss of Nfl results in an increase in activity of the Ras transduction cascade. Because of the growing evidence suggesting involvement of downstream components of the Ras transduction cascade in the sensitization of nociceptive sensory neurons, we examined the stimulus-evoked release of the neuropeptides, substance P (SP) and calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP), from primary sensory neurons of mice with a mutation of the Nfl gene (NfI+1-). Measuring the levels of SP and CGRP by radioimmunoassay, we demonstrated that capsaicin-stimulated release of neuropep-tides is 3-5 folds higher in spinal cord slices from Nfl+1-mice than that from wildtype mouse tissue. In addition, the potassium- and capsaicin-stimulated release of CGRP from the culture of sensory neurons isolated from Nfl+1- mice was more than double that from the culture of wildtype neurons. Using patch-clamp electrophysiological techniques, we also examined the excitability of capsaicin-sensitive sensory neurons. It was found that the number of action potentials generated by the neurons from Nfl+1- mice, responsing to a ramp of depolarizing current, was more than three times of that generated by wildtype neurons. Consistent with that observation, neurons from Nfl+1- mice had lower firing thresholds, lower rheobase currents and shorter firing latencies compared with wildtype neurons. These data clearly demonstrate that GAPs, such as neurofihromin, can alter the excitability of nociceptive sensory neurons. The augmented response of sensory neurons with altered Ras signaling may explain the abnormal pain sensations experienced by people with NFI and suggests an important

  13. Neuronal spike sorting based on radial basis function neural networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Taghavi Kani M

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available "nBackground: Studying the behavior of a society of neurons, extracting the communication mechanisms of brain with other tissues, finding treatment for some nervous system diseases and designing neuroprosthetic devices, require an algorithm to sort neuralspikes automatically. However, sorting neural spikes is a challenging task because of the low signal to noise ratio (SNR of the spikes. The main purpose of this study was to design an automatic algorithm for classifying neuronal spikes that are emitted from a specific region of the nervous system."n "nMethods: The spike sorting process usually consists of three stages: detection, feature extraction and sorting. We initially used signal statistics to detect neural spikes. Then, we chose a limited number of typical spikes as features and finally used them to train a radial basis function (RBF neural network to sort the spikes. In most spike sorting devices, these signals are not linearly discriminative. In order to solve this problem, the aforesaid RBF neural network was used."n "nResults: After the learning process, our proposed algorithm classified any arbitrary spike. The obtained results showed that even though the proposed Radial Basis Spike Sorter (RBSS reached to the same error as the previous methods, however, the computational costs were much lower compared to other algorithms. Moreover, the competitive points of the proposed algorithm were its good speed and low computational complexity."n "nConclusion: Regarding the results of this study, the proposed algorithm seems to serve the purpose of procedures that require real-time processing and spike sorting.

  14. Functional Properties of Tooth Pulp Neurons Responding to Thermal Stimulation

    OpenAIRE

    Ahn, D.K.; Doutova, E.A.; McNaughton, K.; Light, A.R.; Närhi, M.; Maixner, W.

    2012-01-01

    The response properties of tooth pulp neurons that respond to noxious thermal stimulation of the dental pulp have been not well-studied. The present study was designed to characterize the response properties of tooth pulp neurons to noxious thermal stimulation of the dental pulp. Experiments were conducted on 25 male ferrets, and heat stimulation was applied by a computer-controlled thermode. Only 15% of tooth pulp neurons (n = 39) responded to noxious thermal stimulation of the teeth. Tooth ...

  15. A mouse model of visual perceptual learning reveals alterations in neuronal coding and dendritic spine density in the visual cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yan eWang

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Visual perceptual learning (VPL can improve spatial vision in normally sighted and visually impaired individuals. Although previous studies of humans and large animals have explored the neural basis of VPL, elucidation of the underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms remains a challenge. Owing to the advantages of molecular genetic and optogenetic manipulations, the mouse is a promising model for providing a mechanistic understanding of VPL. Here, we thoroughly evaluated the effects and properties of VPL on spatial vision in C57BL/6J mice using a two-alternative, forced-choice visual water task. Briefly, the mice underwent prolonged training at near the individual threshold of contrast or spatial frequency (SF for pattern discrimination or visual detection for 35 consecutive days. Following training, the contrast-threshold trained mice showed an 87% improvement in contrast sensitivity (CS and a 55% gain in visual acuity (VA. Similarly, the SF-threshold trained mice exhibited comparable and long-lasting improvements in VA and significant gains in CS over a wide range of SFs. Furthermore, learning largely transferred across eyes and stimulus orientations. Interestingly, learning could transfer from a pattern discrimination task to a visual detection task, but not vice versa. We validated that this VPL fully restored VA in adult amblyopic mice and old mice. Taken together, these data indicate that mice, as a species, exhibit reliable VPL. Intrinsic signal optical imaging revealed that mice with perceptual training had higher cut-off SFs in primary visual cortex (V1 than those without perceptual training. Moreover, perceptual training induced an increase in the dendritic spine density in layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons of V1. These results indicated functional and structural alterations in V1 during VPL. Overall, our VPL mouse model will provide a platform for investigating the neurobiological basis of VPL.

  16. A neuron model with trainable activation function (TAF) and its MFNN supervised learning

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    吴佑寿; 赵明生

    2001-01-01

    This paper addresses a new kind of neuron model, which has trainable activation function (TAF) in addition to only trainable weights in the conventional M-P model. The final neuron activation function can be derived from a primitive neuron activation function by training. The BP like learning algorithm has been presented for MFNN constructed by neurons of TAF model. Several simulation examples are given to show the network capacity and performance advantages of the new MFNN in comparison with that of conventional sigmoid MFNN.

  17. Pyrethroids differentially alter voltage-gated sodium channels from the honeybee central olfactory neurons.

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    Aklesso Kadala

    Full Text Available The sensitivity of neurons from the honey bee olfactory system to pyrethroid insecticides was studied using the patch-clamp technique on central 'antennal lobe neurons' (ALNs in cell culture. In these neurons, the voltage-dependent sodium currents are characterized by negative potential for activation, fast kinetics of activation and inactivation, and the presence of cumulative inactivation during train of depolarizations. Perfusion of pyrethroids on these ALN neurons submitted to repetitive stimulations induced (1 an acceleration of cumulative inactivation, and (2 a marked slowing of the tail current recorded upon repolarization. Cypermethrin and permethrin accelerated cumulative inactivation of the sodium current peak in a similar manner and tetramethrin was even more effective. The slow-down of channel deactivation was markedly dependent on the type of pyrethroid. With cypermethrin, a progressive increase of the tail current amplitude along with successive stimulations reveals a traditionally described use-dependent recruitment of modified sodium channels. However, an unexpected decrease in this tail current was revealed with tetramethrin. If one considers the calculated percentage of modified channels as an index of pyrethroids effects, ALNs are significantly more susceptible to tetramethrin than to permethrin or cypermethrin for a single depolarization, but this difference attenuates with repetitive activity. Further comparison with peripheral neurons from antennae suggest that these modifications are neuron type specific. Modeling the sodium channel as a multi-state channel with fast and slow inactivation allows to underline the effects of pyrethroids on a set of rate constants connecting open and inactivated conformations, and give some insights to their specificity. Altogether, our results revealed a differential sensitivity of central olfactory neurons to pyrethroids that emphasize the ability for these compounds to impair detection and

  18. Alterations in the cholinergic system of brain stem neurons in a mouse model of Rett syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oginsky, Max F; Cui, Ningren; Zhong, Weiwei; Johnson, Christopher M; Jiang, Chun

    2014-09-15

    Rett syndrome is an autism-spectrum disorder resulting from mutations to the X-linked gene, methyl-CpG binding protein 2 (MeCP2), which causes abnormalities in many systems. It is possible that the body may develop certain compensatory mechanisms to alleviate the abnormalities. The norepinephrine system originating mainly in the locus coeruleus (LC) is defective in Rett syndrome and Mecp2-null mice. LC neurons are subject to modulation by GABA, glutamate, and acetylcholine (ACh), providing an ideal system to test the compensatory hypothesis. Here we show evidence for potential compensatory modulation of LC neurons by post- and presynaptic ACh inputs. We found that the postsynaptic currents of nicotinic ACh receptors (nAChR) were smaller in amplitude and longer in decay time in the Mecp2-null mice than in the wild type. Single-cell PCR analysis showed a decrease in the expression of α3-, α4-, α7-, and β3-subunits and an increase in the α5- and α6-subunits in the mutant mice. The α5-subunit was present in many of the LC neurons with slow-decay nAChR currents. The nicotinic modulation of spontaneous GABAA-ergic inhibitory postsynaptic currents in LC neurons was enhanced in Mecp2-null mice. In contrast, the nAChR manipulation of glutamatergic input to LC neurons was unaffected in both groups of mice. Our current-clamp studies showed that the modulation of LC neurons by ACh input was reduced moderately in Mecp2-null mice, despite the major decrease in nAChR currents, suggesting possible compensatory processes may take place, thus reducing the defects to a lesser extent in LC neurons.

  19. Connectomics and neuroticism: an altered functional network organization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Servaas, Michelle N; Geerligs, Linda; Renken, Remco J; Marsman, Jan-Bernard C; Ormel, Johan; Riese, Harriëtte; Aleman, André

    2015-01-01

    The personality trait neuroticism is a potent risk marker for psychopathology. Although the neurobiological basis remains unclear, studies have suggested that alterations in connectivity may underlie it. Therefore, the aim of the current study was to shed more light on the functional network organization in neuroticism. To this end, we applied graph theory on resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) data in 120 women selected based on their neuroticism score. Binary and weighted brain-wide graphs were constructed to examine changes in the functional network structure and functional connectivity strength. Furthermore, graphs were partitioned into modules to specifically investigate connectivity within and between functional subnetworks related to emotion processing and cognitive control. Subsequently, complex network measures (ie, efficiency and modularity) were calculated on the brain-wide graphs and modules, and correlated with neuroticism scores. Compared with low neurotic individuals, high neurotic individuals exhibited a whole-brain network structure resembling more that of a random network and had overall weaker functional connections. Furthermore, in these high neurotic individuals, functional subnetworks could be delineated less clearly and the majority of these subnetworks showed lower efficiency, while the affective subnetwork showed higher efficiency. In addition, the cingulo-operculum subnetwork demonstrated more ties with other functional subnetworks in association with neuroticism. In conclusion, the 'neurotic brain' has a less than optimal functional network organization and shows signs of functional disconnectivity. Moreover, in high compared with low neurotic individuals, emotion and salience subnetworks have a more prominent role in the information exchange, while sensory(-motor) and cognitive control subnetworks have a less prominent role.

  20. ALTERED HIPPOCAMPAL NEUROGENESIS AND AMYGDALAR NEURONAL ACTIVITY IN ADULT MICE WITH REPEATED EXPERIENCE OF AGGRESSION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dmitriy eSmagin

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The repeated experience of winning in a social conflict setting elevates levels of aggression and may lead to violent behavioral patterns. Here we use a paradigm of repeated aggression and fighting deprivation to examine changes in behavior, neurogenesis, and neuronal activity in mice with positive fighting experience. We show that for males, repeated positive fighting experience induces persistent demonstration of aggression and stereotypic behaviors in daily agonistic interactions, enhances aggressive motivation, and elevates levels of anxiety. When winning males are deprived of opportunities to engage in further fights, they demonstrate increased levels of aggressiveness. Positive fighting experience results in increased levels of progenitor cell proliferation and production of young neurons in the hippocampus. This increase is not diminished after a fighting deprivation period. Furthermore, repeated winning experience decreases the number of activated (c-fos positive cells in the basolateral amygdala and increases the number of activated cells in the hippocampus; a subsequent no-fight period restores the number of c-fos-positive cells. Our results indicate that extended positive fighting experience in a social conflict heightens aggression, increases proliferation of neuronal progenitors and production of young neurons in the hippocampus, and decreases neuronal activity in the amygdala; these changes can be modified by depriving the winners of the opportunity for further fights.

  1. Investigation of synapse formation and function in a glutamatergic-GABAergic two-neuron microcircuit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chang, Chia-Ling; Trimbuch, Thorsten; Chao, Hsiao-Tuan; Jordan, Julia-Christine; Herman, Melissa A; Rosenmund, Christian

    2014-01-15

    Neural circuits are composed of mainly glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons, which communicate through synaptic connections. Many factors instruct the formation and function of these synapses; however, it is difficult to dissect the contribution of intrinsic cell programs from that of extrinsic environmental effects in an intact network. Here, we perform paired recordings from two-neuron microculture preparations of mouse hippocampal glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons to investigate how synaptic input and output of these two principal cells develop. In our reduced preparation, we found that glutamatergic neurons showed no change in synaptic output or input regardless of partner neuron cell type or neuronal activity level. In contrast, we found that glutamatergic input caused the GABAergic neuron to modify its output by way of an increase in synapse formation and a decrease in synaptic release efficiency. These findings are consistent with aspects of GABAergic synapse maturation observed in many brain regions. In addition, changes in GABAergic output are cell wide and not target-cell specific. We also found that glutamatergic neuronal activity determined the AMPA receptor properties of synapses on the partner GABAergic neuron. All modifications of GABAergic input and output required activity of the glutamatergic neuron. Because our system has reduced extrinsic factors, the changes we saw in the GABAergic neuron due to glutamatergic input may reflect initiation of maturation programs that underlie the formation and function of in vivo neural circuits.

  2. GSK-3β Overexpression Alters the Dendritic Spines of Developmentally Generated Granule Neurons in the Mouse Hippocampal Dentate Gyrus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pallas-Bazarra, Noemí; Kastanauskaite, Asta; Avila, Jesús; DeFelipe, Javier; Llorens-Martín, María

    2017-01-01

    The dentate gyrus (DG) plays a crucial role in hippocampal-related memory. The most abundant cellular type in the DG, namely granule neurons, are developmentally generated around postnatal day P6 in mice. Moreover, a unique feature of the DG is the occurrence of adult hippocampal neurogenesis, a process that gives rise to newborn granule neurons throughout life. Adult-born and developmentally generated granule neurons share some maturational aspects but differ in others, such as in their positioning within the granule cell layer. Adult hippocampal neurogenesis encompasses a series of plastic changes that modify the function of the hippocampal trisynaptic network. In this regard, it is known that glycogen synthase kinase 3β (GSK-3β) regulates both synaptic plasticity and memory. By using a transgenic mouse overexpressing GSK-3β in hippocampal neurons, we previously demonstrated that the overexpression of this kinase has deleterious effects on the maturation of newborn granule neurons. In the present study, we addressed the effects of GSK-3β overexpression on the morphology and number of dendritic spines of developmentally generated granule neurons. To this end, we performed intracellular injections of Lucifer Yellow in developmentally generated granule neurons of wild-type and GSK-3β-overexpressing mice and analyzed the number and morphologies of dendritic spines (namely, stubby, thin and mushroom). GSK-3β overexpression led to a general reduction in the number of dendritic spines. In addition, it caused a slight reduction in the percentage, head diameter and length of thin spines, whereas the head diameter of mushroom spines was increased. PMID:28344548

  3. Removal of GABA(A receptor γ2 subunits from parvalbumin neurons causes wide-ranging behavioral alterations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elli Leppä

    Full Text Available We investigated the behavioral significance of fast synaptic inhibition by αβγ2-type GABA(A receptors on parvalbumin (Pv cells. The GABA(A receptor γ2 subunit gene was selectively inactivated in Pv-positive neurons by Cre/loxP recombination. The resulting Pv-Δγ2 mice were relatively healthy in the first postnatal weeks; but then as Cre started to be expressed, the mice progressively developed wide-ranging phenotypic alterations including low body weight, motor deficits and tremor, decreased anxiety levels, decreased pain sensitivity and deficient prepulse inhibition of the acoustic startle reflex and impaired spatial learning. Nevertheless, the deletion was not lethal, and mice did not show increased mortality even after one year. Autoradiography with t-butylbicyclophosphoro[(35S]thionate suggested an increased amount of GABA(A receptors with only α and β subunits in central nervous system regions that contained high levels of parvalbumin neurons. Using BAC-transgenesis, we reduced some of the Pv-Δγ2 phenotype by selectively re-expressing the wild-type γ2 subunit back into some Pv cells (reticular thalamic neurons and cerebellar Pv-positive neurons. This produced less severe impairments of motor skills and spatial learning compared with Pv-Δγ2 mice, but all other deficits remained. Our results reveal the widespread significance of fast GABAergic inhibition onto Pv-positive neurons for diverse behavioral modalities, such as motor coordination, sensorimotor integration, emotional behavior and nociception.

  4. Consecutive Analysis of BACE1 Function on Developing and Developed Neuronal Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kamikubo, Yuji; Takasugi, Nobumasa; Niisato, Kazue; Hashimoto, Yoshie; Sakurai, Takashi

    2017-01-01

    The amyloid-β protein precursor (AβPP) is cleaved by a transmembrane protease termed β-site AβPP cleavage enzyme (BACE1), which is being explored as a target for therapy and prevention of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Although genetic deletion of BACE1 results in abolished amyloid pathology in AD model mice, it also results in neurodevelopmental phenotypes such as hypomyelination and synaptic loss, observed in schizophrenia and autism-like phenotype. These lines of evidence indicate that the inhibition of BACE1 causes adverse side effects during the neurodevelopmental stage. However, the effects of the inhibition of BACE1 activity on already developed neurons remain unclear. Here, we utilized hippocampal slice cultures as an ex vivo model that enabled continuous and long-term analysis for the effect of BACE1 inhibition on neuronal circuits and synapses. Temporal changes in synaptic proteins in hippocampal slices indicated acute synaptic loss, followed by synapse formation and maintenance phases. Long-term BACE1 inhibition in the neurodevelopmental stage caused the loss of synaptic proteins but failed to alter synaptic proteins in the already developed maintenance stage. These data indicate that BACE1 function on synapses is dependent on synaptic developmental stages, and our study provides a useful model to observe the long-term effect of BACE1 activity in the brain, and to evaluate adverse effects of BACE inhibitors.

  5. Developing a functional urinary bladder: a neuronal context

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Janet R Keast

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The development of organs occurs in parallel with the formation of their nerve supply. The innervation of pelvic organs (lower urinary tract, hindgut, and sexual organs is complex and we know remarkably little about the mechanisms that form these neural pathways. The goal of this short review is to use the urinary bladder as an example to stimulate interest in this question. The bladder requires a healthy mature nervous system to store urine and release it at behaviourally appropriate times. Understanding the mechanisms underlying the construction of these neural circuits is not only relevant to defining the basis of developmental problems but may also suggest strategies to restore connectivity and function following injury or disease in adults. The bladder nerve supply comprises multiple classes of sensory, and parasympathetic or sympathetic autonomic effector (motor neurons. First, we define the developmental endpoint by describing this circuitry in adult rodents. Next we discuss the innervation of the developing bladder, identifying challenges posed by this area of research. Last we provide examples of genetically modified mice with bladder dysfunction and suggest potential neural contributors to this state.

  6. Proteasome alteration and delayed neuronal death in hippocampal CA1 and dentate gyrus regions following transient cerebral ischemia

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Pengfei Ge; Tianfei Luo; Jizhou Zhang; Haifeng Wang; Wenchen Li; Yongxin Luan; Feng Ling; Yi'nan Luo

    2009-01-01

    disappeared in the CA1 region,in contrast,neurons of the DG region showed minimized proteasome expression at 24 hours,with a slight increase at 72 hours (P<0.01).CONCLUSION:The alteration of proteasome following ischemia/reperfusion in the neurons of hippocampal CA1 and DG regions reduces the ability of cells to degrade abnormal protein,which may be an important factor resulting in delayed neuronal death following transient cerebral ischemia.

  7. Altered Intracellular Milieu of ADAR2-Deficient Motor Neurons in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takenari Yamashita

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Transactive response DNA-binding protein (TDP-43 pathology, and failure of A-to-I conversion (RNA editing at the glutamine/arginine (Q/R site of α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionic acid (AMPA receptor subunit GluA2, are etiology-linked molecular abnormalities that concomitantly occur in the motor neurons of most patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS. Adenosine deaminase acting on RNA 2 (ADAR2 specifically catalyzes GluA2 Q/R site-RNA editing. Furthermore, conditional ADAR2 knockout mice (AR2 exhibit a progressive ALS phenotype with TDP-43 pathology in the motor neurons, which is the most reliable pathological marker of ALS. Therefore, the evidence indicates that ADAR2 downregulation is a causative factor in ALS, and AR2 mice exhibit causative molecular changes that occur in ALS. We discuss the contributors to ADAR2 downregulation and TDP-43 pathology in AR2 mouse motor neurons. We describe mechanisms of exaggerated Ca2+ influx amelioration via AMPA receptors, which is neuroprotective in ADAR2-deficient motor neurons with normalization of TDP-43 pathology in AR2 mice. Development of drugs to treat diseases requires appropriate animal models and a sensitive method of evaluating efficacy. Therefore, normalization of disrupted intracellular environments resulting from ADAR2 downregulation may be a therapeutic target for ALS. We discuss the development of targeted therapy for ALS using the AR2 mouse model.

  8. Altered functional brain networks in Prader-Willi syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yi; Zhao, Heng; Qiu, Siyou; Tian, Jie; Wen, Xiaotong; Miller, Jennifer L; von Deneen, Karen M; Zhou, Zhenyu; Gold, Mark S; Liu, Yijun

    2013-06-01

    Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS) is a genetic imprinting disorder characterized mainly by hyperphagia and early childhood obesity. Previous functional neuroimaging studies used visual stimuli to examine abnormal activities in the eating-related neural circuitry of patients with PWS. It was found that patients with PWS exhibited both excessive hunger and hyperphagia consistently, even in situations without any food stimulation. In the present study, we employed resting-state functional MRI techniques to investigate abnormal brain networks related to eating disorders in children with PWS. First, we applied amplitude of low-frequency fluctuation analysis to define the regions of interest that showed significant alterations in resting-state brain activity levels in patients compared with their sibling control group. We then applied a functional connectivity (FC) analysis to these regions of interest in order to characterize interactions among the brain regions. Our results demonstrated that patients with PWS showed decreased FC strength in the medial prefrontal cortex (MPFC)/inferior parietal lobe (IPL), MPFC/precuneus, IPL/precuneus and IPL/hippocampus in the default mode network; decreased FC strength in the pre-/postcentral gyri and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC)/orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) in the motor sensory network and prefrontal cortex network, respectively; and increased FC strength in the anterior cingulate cortex/insula, ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC)/OFC and DLPFC/VLPFC in the core network and prefrontal cortex network, respectively. These findings indicate that there are FC alterations among the brain regions implicated in eating as well as rewarding, even during the resting state, which may provide further evidence supporting the use of PWS as a model to study obesity and to provide information on potential neural targets for the medical treatment of overeating.

  9. Implication of altered proteasome function in alcoholic liver injury

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2007-01-01

    The proteasome is a major protein-degrading enzyme,which catalyzes degradation of oxidized and aged proteins, signal transduction factors and cleaves peptides for antigen presentation. Proteasome exists in the equilibrium of 26S and 20S particles. Proteasome function is altered by ethanol metabolism, depending on oxidative stress levels: low oxidative stress induces proteasome activity, while high oxidative stress reduces it. The proposed mechanisms for modulation of proteasome activity are related to oxidative modification of proteasomal proteins with primary and secondary products derived from ethanol oxidation.Decreased proteolysis by the proteasome results in the accumulation of insoluble protein aggregates, which cannot be degraded by proteasome and which further inhibit proteasome function. Mallory bodies, a common signature of alcoholic liver diseases, are formed by liver cells, when proteasome is unable to remove cytokeratins.Proteasome inhibition by ethanol also promotes the accumulation of pro-apoptotic factors in mitochondria of ethanol-metabolizing liver cells that are normally degraded by proteasome. In addition, decreased proteasome function also induces accumulation of the negative regulators of cytokine signaling (Ⅰ-κB and SOCS), thereby blocking cytokine signal transduction.Finally, ethanol-elicited blockade of interferon type 1 and 2 signaling and decreased proteasome function impairs generation of peptides for MHC class Ⅰ-restricted antigen presentation.

  10. Role of the NR2A/2B subunits of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor in glutamate-induced glutamic acid decarboxylase alteration in cortical GABAergic neurons in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monnerie, H; Hsu, F-C; Coulter, D A; Le Roux, P D

    2010-12-29

    The vulnerability of brain neuronal cell subpopulations to neurologic insults varies greatly. Among cells that survive a pathological insult, for example ischemia or brain trauma, some may undergo morphological and/or biochemical changes that may compromise brain function. The present study is a follow-up of our previous studies that investigated the effect of glutamate-induced excitotoxicity on the GABA synthesizing enzyme glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD65/67)'s expression in surviving DIV 11 cortical GABAergic neurons in vitro [Monnerie and Le Roux, (2007) Exp Neurol 205:367-382, (2008) Exp Neurol 213:145-153]. An N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR)-mediated decrease in GAD expression was found following glutamate exposure. Here we examined which NMDAR subtype(s) mediated the glutamate-induced change in GAD protein levels. Western blotting techniques on cortical neuron cultures showed that glutamate's effect on GAD proteins was not altered by NR2B-containing diheteromeric (NR1/NR2B) receptor blockade. By contrast, blockade of triheteromeric (NR1/NR2A/NR2B) receptors fully protected against a decrease in GAD protein levels following glutamate exposure. When receptor location on the postsynaptic membrane was examined, extrasynaptic NMDAR stimulation was observed to be sufficient to decrease GAD protein levels similar to that observed after glutamate bath application. Blocking diheteromeric receptors prevented glutamate's effect on GAD proteins after extrasynaptic NMDAR stimulation. Finally, NR2B subunit examination with site-specific antibodies demonstrated a glutamate-induced, calpain-mediated alteration in NR2B expression. These results suggest that glutamate-induced excitotoxic NMDAR stimulation in cultured GABAergic cortical neurons depends upon subunit composition and receptor location (synaptic vs. extrasynaptic) on the neuronal membrane. Biochemical alterations in surviving cortical GABAergic neurons in various disease states may contribute to the altered

  11. Intracerebroventricular administration of Shiga toxin type 2 altered the expression levels of neuronal nitric oxide synthase and glial fibrillary acidic protein in rat brains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boccoli, Javier; Loidl, C Fabián; Lopez-Costa, Juan José; Creydt, Virginia Pistone; Ibarra, Cristina; Goldstein, Jorge

    2008-09-16

    Shiga toxin (Stx) from enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (STEC) is the main cause of hemorrhagic colitis which may derive into Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome (HUS) and acute encephalopathy, one of the major risk factors for infant death caused by the toxin. We have previously demonstrated that intracerebroventricular administration of Stx2 causes neuronal death and glial cell damage in rat brains. In the present work, we observed that the intracerebroventricular administration of Stx2 increased the expression of glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) leading to astrogliosis. Confocal microscopy showed reactive astrocytes in contact with Stx2-containing neurons. Immunocolocalization of increased GFAP and Stx2 in astrocytes was also observed. This insult in the brain was correlated with changes in the expression and activity of neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) by using the NADPH-diaphorase histochemical technique (NADPH-d HT). A significant decrease in NOS/NADPH-d-positive neurons and NOS/NADPH-d activity was observed in cerebral cortex and striatum, whereas an opposite effect was found in the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus. We concluded that the i.c.v. administration of Stx2 promotes a typical pattern of brain injury showing reactive astrocytes and an alteration in the number and activity of nNOS/NADPH-d. According to the functional state of nNOS/NADPH-d and to brain cell morphology data, it could be inferred that the i.c.v. administration of Stx2 leads to either a neurodegenerative or a neuroprotective mechanism in the affected brain areas. The present animal model resembles the encephalopathy developed in Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome (HUS) patients by STEC intoxication.

  12. Misfolded SOD1 associated with motor neuron mitochondria alters mitochondrial shape and distribution prior to clinical onset.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christine Vande Velde

    Full Text Available Mutations in superoxide dismutase (SOD1 are causative for inherited amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. A proportion of SOD1 mutant protein is misfolded onto the cytoplasmic face of mitochondria in one or more spinal cord cell types. By construction of mice in which mitochondrially targeted enhanced green fluorescent protein is selectively expressed in motor neurons, we demonstrate that axonal mitochondria of motor neurons are primary in vivo targets for misfolded SOD1. Mutant SOD1 alters axonal mitochondrial morphology and distribution, with dismutase active SOD1 causing mitochondrial clustering at the proximal side of Schmidt-Lanterman incisures within motor axons and dismutase inactive SOD1 producing aberrantly elongated axonal mitochondria beginning pre-symptomatically and increasing in severity as disease progresses. Somal mitochondria are altered by mutant SOD1, with loss of the characteristic cylindrical, networked morphology and its replacement by a less elongated, more spherical shape. These data indicate that mutant SOD1 binding to mitochondria disrupts normal mitochondrial distribution and size homeostasis as early pathogenic features of SOD1 mutant-mediated ALS.

  13. Alterations in cognitive and psychological functioning after organic solvent exposure

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Morrow, L.A.; Ryan, C.M.; Hodgson, M.J.; Robin, N. (Univ. of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, PA (USA))

    1990-05-01

    Exposure to organic solvents has been linked repeatedly to alterations in both personality and cognitive functioning. To assess the nature and extent of these changes more thoroughly, 32 workers with a history of exposure to mixtures of organic solvents and 32 age- and education-matched blue-collar workers with no history of exposure were assessed with a comprehensive battery of neuropsychological tests. Although both groups were comparable on measures of general intelligence, significant differences were found in virtually all other cognitive domains tested (Learning and Memory, Visuospatial, Attention and Mental Flexibility, Psychomotor Speed). In addition, Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventories of exposed workers indicated clinically significant levels of depression, anxiety, somatic concerns and disturbances in thinking. The reported psychological distress was unrelated to degree of cognitive deficit. Finally, several exposure-related variables were associated with poorer performance on tests of memory and visuospatial ability.

  14. Molecular rheology of neuronal membranes explored using a molecular rotor: Implications for receptor function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pal, Sreetama; Chakraborty, Hirak; Bandari, Suman; Yahioglu, Gokhan; Suhling, Klaus; Chattopadhyay, Amitabha

    2016-03-01

    The role of membrane cholesterol as a crucial regulator in the structure and function of membrane proteins and receptors is well documented. However, there is a lack of consensus on the mechanism for such regulation. We have previously shown that the function of an important neuronal receptor, the serotonin1A receptor, is modulated by cholesterol in hippocampal membranes. With an overall objective of addressing the role of membrane physical properties in receptor function, we measured the viscosity of hippocampal membranes of varying cholesterol content using a meso-substituted fluorophore (BODIPY-C12) based on the BODIPY probe. BODIPY-C12 acts as a fluorescent molecular rotor and allows measurement of hippocampal membrane viscosity through its characteristic viscosity-sensitive fluorescence depolarization. A striking feature of our results is that specific agonist binding by the serotonin1A receptor exhibits close correlation with hippocampal membrane viscosity, implying the importance of global membrane properties in receptor function. We envision that our results are important in understanding GPCR regulation by the membrane environment, and is relevant in the context of diseases in which GPCR signaling plays a major role and are characterized by altered membrane fluidity.

  15. Altered Interhemispheric Functional Coordination in Chronic Tinnitus Patients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu-Chen Chen

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Purpose. Recent studies suggest that tinnitus may be due in part to aberrant callosal structure and interhemispheric interaction. To explore this hypothesis we use a novel method, voxel-mirrored homotopic connectivity (VMHC, to examine the resting-state interhemispheric functional connectivity and its relationships with clinical characteristics in chronic tinnitus patients. Materials and Methods. Twenty-eight chronic tinnitus patients with normal hearing thresholds and 30 age-, sex-, education-, and hearing threshold-matched healthy controls were included in this study and underwent the resting-state fMRI scanning. We computed the VMHC to analyze the interhemispheric functional coordination between homotopic points of the brain in both groups. Results. Compared to the controls, tinnitus patients showed significantly increased VMHC in the middle temporal gyrus, middle frontal gyrus, and superior occipital gyrus. In tinnitus patients, a positive correlation was found between tinnitus duration and VMHC of the uncus. Moreover, correlations between VMHC changes and tinnitus distress were observed in the transverse temporal gyrus, superior temporal pole, precentral gyrus, and calcarine cortex. Conclusions. These results show altered interhemispheric functional connectivity linked with specific tinnitus characteristics in chronic tinnitus patients, which may be implicated in the neuropathophysiology of tinnitus.

  16. Functional contribution of alpha3L8' to the neuronal nicotinic alpha3 receptor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nieves-Cintrón, Madeline; Caballero-Rivera, Daniel; Silva, Walter I; Navedo, Manuel F; Lasalde-Dominicci, José A

    2008-10-01

    The role of position L8', located in transmembrane domain 1 of the neuronal nicotinic alpha3 subunit, was characterized by using two-electrode voltage clamp in Xenopus oocytes. Four amino acids (Ala, Ser, Phe, and Tyr) were inserted at this conserved position, and the mutant subunit was coexpressed with either wild-type beta2 or beta4 subunits. These substitutions led to significant alterations in the pharmacodynamic parameters of cholinergic agents, resulting in loss of function. Ala and Ser substitutions resulted in losses in agonist (ACh, nicotine, and DMPP) potency and intrinsic activity at both alpha3beta2 and alpha3beta4 receptors. Similarly, significant changes in antagonist potency were produced by the Ala and Ser substitutions. Phe and Tyr mutations did not alter the receptor's EC(50) for ACh or nicotine but reduced the EC(50) for DMPP at both receptors. The Phe mutation also reduced the intrinsic activity of all agonists tested at both receptors. The Tyr mutation, though, led to a decrease in intrinsic activity for all agonists at the alpha3beta2 receptor, yet resulted in no changes for DMPP, a decrease for nicotine, and an increase for ACh at the alpha3beta4 receptor. The most dramatic changes in the receptor's functional properties were produced by substitutions that introduced the largest changes in amino acid volume. Additional replacements (Gly, Thr, and Val) suggested an inverse correlation between amino acid volume at position alpha3L8' and EC(50) for alpha3beta4 nAChRs; however, alpha3beta2 nAChRs displayed a nonlinear correlation. These data demonstrate that structural alterations at position alpha3L8' could propagate to the agonist-binding site.

  17. Histological and functional benefit following transplantation of motor neuron progenitors to the injured rat spinal cord.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sharyn L Rossi

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Motor neuron loss is characteristic of cervical spinal cord injury (SCI and contributes to functional deficit. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In order to investigate the amenability of the injured adult spinal cord to motor neuron differentiation, we transplanted spinal cord injured animals with a high purity population of human motor neuron progenitors (hMNP derived from human embryonic stem cells (hESCs. In vitro, hMNPs displayed characteristic motor neuron-specific markers, a typical electrophysiological profile, functionally innervated human or rodent muscle, and secreted physiologically active growth factors that caused neurite branching and neuronal survival. hMNP transplantation into cervical SCI sites in adult rats resulted in suppression of intracellular signaling pathways associated with SCI pathogenesis, which correlated with greater endogenous neuronal survival and neurite branching. These neurotrophic effects were accompanied by significantly enhanced performance on all parameters of the balance beam task, as compared to controls. Interestingly, hMNP transplantation resulted in survival, differentiation, and site-specific integration of hMNPs distal to the SCI site within ventral horns, but hMNPs near the SCI site reverted to a neuronal progenitor state, suggesting an environmental deficiency for neuronal maturation associated with SCI. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: These findings underscore the barriers imposed on neuronal differentiation of transplanted cells by the gliogenic nature of the injured spinal cord, and the physiological relevance of transplant-derived neurotrophic support to functional recovery.

  18. Alteration of the discharge pattern of rat diencephalic neurones with scrotal skin temperature.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, D C; Gayton, R J

    1986-12-03

    Neuronal responses to different scrotal skin temperatures were examined in the hypothalamus of anaesthetised male rats. Mean firing rate and interspike intervals were calculated on-line by microcomputers. Two types of response were observed when the scrotal skin was warmed: an abrupt change in mean firing rate coupled with a change in firing pattern, or a change of pattern unaccompanied by any change in mean rate. These results suggest that hypothalamic cells can convey information independently of their mean firing rate.

  19. Cognitive Deficits Associated with Nav1.1 Alterations: Involvement of Neuronal Firing Dynamics and Oscillations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alex C Bender

    Full Text Available Brain oscillations play a critical role in information processing and may, therefore, be essential to uncovering the mechanisms of cognitive impairment in neurological disease. In Dravet syndrome (DS, a mutation in SCN1A, coding for the voltage-gated sodium channel Nav1.1, is associated with severe cognitive impairment and seizures. While seizure frequency and severity do not correlate with the extent of impairment, the slowing of brain rhythms may be involved. Here we investigate the role of Nav1.1 on brain rhythms and cognition using RNA interference. We demonstrate that knockdown of Nav1.1 impairs fast- and burst-firing properties of neurons in the medial septum in vivo. The proportion of neurons that fired phase-locked to hippocampal theta oscillations was reduced, and medial septal regulation of theta rhythm was disrupted. During a working memory task, this deficit was characterized by a decrease in theta frequency and was negatively correlated with performance. These findings suggest a fundamental role for Nav1.1 in facilitating fast-firing properties in neurons, highlight the importance of precise temporal control of theta frequency for working memory, and imply that Nav1.1 deficits may disrupt information processing in DS via a dysregulation of brain rhythms.

  20. Neurodegeneration in Autoimmune Optic Neuritis Is Associated with Altered APP Cleavage in Neurons and Up-Regulation of p53.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sabine Herold

    Full Text Available Multiple Sclerosis (MS is a chronic autoimmune inflammatory disease of the central nervous system (CNS. Histopathological and radiological analysis revealed that neurodegeneration occurs early in the disease course. However, the pathological mechanisms involved in neurodegeneration are poorly understood. Myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein (MOG-induced experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE in Brown Norway rats (BN-rats is a well-established animal model, especially of the neurodegenerative aspects of MS. Previous studies in this animal model indicated that loss of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs, the neurons that form the axons of the optic nerve, occurs in the preclinical phase of the disease and is in part independent of overt histopathological changes of the optic nerve. Therefore, the aim of this study was to identify genes which are involved in neuronal cell loss at different disease stages of EAE. Furthermore, genes that are highly specific for autoimmune-driven neurodegeneration were compared to those regulated in RGCs after optic nerve axotomy at corresponding time points. Using laser capture micro dissection we isolated RNA from unfixed RGCs and performed global transcriptome analysis of retinal neurons. In total, we detected 582 genes sequentially expressed in the preclinical phase and 1150 genes in the clinical manifest EAE (P 1.5. Furthermore, using ingenuity pathway analysis (IPA, we identified amyloid precursor protein (APP as a potential upstream regulator of changes in gene expression in the preclinical EAE but neither in clinical EAE, nor at any time point after optic nerve transection. Therefore, the gene pathway analysis lead to the hypothesis that altered cleavage of APP in neurons in the preclinical phase of EAE leads to the enhanced production of APP intracellular domain (AICD, which in turn acts as a transcriptional regulator and thereby initiates an apoptotic signaling cascade via up-regulation of the target gene p

  1. Homeostatic plasticity: single hippocampal neurons see the light.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutton, Michael A

    2010-11-04

    Neurons adapt to altered network activity through homeostatic changes in synaptic function. In this issue of Neuron, Goold and Nicoll report that chronic hyperactivation of individual CA1 pyramidal neurons drives cell-autonomous, compensatory synapse elimination via CaMKIV-dependent transcription. These findings suggest that neurons gauge their intrinsic activity to instruct homeostatic regulation of synaptic inputs.

  2. Alterations of CNS structure & function by charged particle radiation & resultant oxidative stress

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, Gregory; Chang, Polly; Favre, Cecile; Fike, John; Komarova, Natalia; Limoli, Charles; Mao, Xiao-Wen; Obenaus, Andre; Raber, Jacob; Spigelman, Igor; Soltesz, Ivan; Song, Sheng-Kwei; Stampanoni, Marco; Vlkolinsky, Roman; Wodarz, Dominik

    The NSCOR program project is transitioning from establishing the existence of CNS responses to low doses of charged particles, to an investigation of mechanisms underlying these changes and extending the irradiation paradigm to more space-like exposures. In earlier experiments we examined radiation responses of the mouse brain (hippocampus) following exposure to 250 MeV protons and 600 MeV/n iron ions. Our key findings on structural changes were: 1) Significant dose and time dependent loss of en-dothelial cells and microvessel network remodeling occurs suggesting that vascular insufficiency is produced. 2) Significant dose dependent losses of neural precursor cells were observed in a lineage specific pattern which may be associated with cognitive impairment. 3) Evaluation of DNA damage showed dose and time dependent accumulation of mutations with region-specific mutation structures and gene expression profiling demonstrated activation of neurotrophic and adhesion factors as well as chemokine receptors associated with inflammation. Our key find-ings on functional changes were: 1) Time and dose dependent modifications to neural output expressed as enhanced excitability but reduced synaptic efficacy and plasticity (including long term potentiation). 2) Intrinsic membrane properties of neurons were not significantly modi-fied by radiation exposure but pharmacological treatments demonstrated changes in inhibitory synapses. 3) MRI imaging visualized brain structural changes based on altered water diffu-sion properties and patterns were consistent with demyelination or gliosis. Our key findings on neurodegeneration and fidelity of homeostasis were: 1) APP23 transgenic mice exhibited accelerated APP-type electrophysiological pathology over several months. 2) Microvessel net-work changes following irradiation were suggestive of poor tissue oxygenation. 3) The ability of the brain to respond a controlled septic shock was altered by irradiation; the septic shock reactions

  3. Dynamical patterns of calcium signaling in a functional model of neuron-astrocyte networks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Postnov, D.E.; Koreshkov, R.N.; Brazhe, N.A.

    2009-01-01

    We propose a functional mathematical model for neuron-astrocyte networks. The model incorporates elements of the tripartite synapse and the spatial branching structure of coupled astrocytes. We consider glutamate-induced calcium signaling as a specific mode of excitability and transmission...... in astrocytic-neuronal networks. We reproduce local and global dynamical patterns observed experimentally....

  4. A Variant of GJD2, Encoding for Connexin 36, Alters the Function of Insulin Producing β-Cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valentina Cigliola

    Full Text Available Signalling through gap junctions contributes to control insulin secretion and, thus, blood glucose levels. Gap junctions of the insulin-producing β-cells are made of connexin 36 (Cx36, which is encoded by the GJD2 gene. Cx36-null mice feature alterations mimicking those observed in type 2 diabetes (T2D. GJD2 is also expressed in neurons, which share a number of common features with pancreatic β-cells. Given that a synonymous exonic single nucleotide polymorphism of human Cx36 (SNP rs3743123 associates with altered function of central neurons in a subset of epileptic patients, we investigated whether this SNP also caused alterations of β-cell function. Transfection of rs3743123 cDNA in connexin-lacking HeLa cells resulted in altered formation of gap junction plaques and cell coupling, as compared to those induced by wild type (WT GJD2 cDNA. Transgenic mice expressing the very same cDNAs under an insulin promoter revealed that SNP rs3743123 expression consistently lead to a post-natal reduction of islet Cx36 levels and β-cell survival, resulting in hyperglycemia in selected lines. These changes were not observed in sex- and age-matched controls expressing WT hCx36. The variant GJD2 only marginally associated to heterogeneous populations of diabetic patients. The data document that a silent polymorphism of GJD2 is associated with altered β-cell function, presumably contributing to T2D pathogenesis.

  5. How linear features alter predator movement and the functional response.

    KAUST Repository

    McKenzie, Hannah W

    2012-01-18

    In areas of oil and gas exploration, seismic lines have been reported to alter the movement patterns of wolves (Canis lupus). We developed a mechanistic first passage time model, based on an anisotropic elliptic partial differential equation, and used this to explore how wolf movement responses to seismic lines influence the encounter rate of the wolves with their prey. The model was parametrized using 5 min GPS location data. These data showed that wolves travelled faster on seismic lines and had a higher probability of staying on a seismic line once they were on it. We simulated wolf movement on a range of seismic line densities and drew implications for the rate of predator-prey interactions as described by the functional response. The functional response exhibited a more than linear increase with respect to prey density (type III) as well as interactions with seismic line density. Encounter rates were significantly higher in landscapes with high seismic line density and were most pronounced at low prey densities. This suggests that prey at low population densities are at higher risk in environments with a high seismic line density unless they learn to avoid them.

  6. Adult adipose-derived stromal cells differentiate into neurons with normal electrophysiological functions

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Xiaodong Yuan; Yanan Cai; Ya Ou; Yanhui Lu

    2011-01-01

    β-mercaptoethanol was used to induce in vitro neuronal differentiation of adipose-derived stromal cells. Within an 8-hour period post-differentiation, the induced cells exhibited typical neuronal morphology, and expression of microtubule-associated protein 2 and neuron-specific enolase, which are markers of mature neurons, reached a peak at 5 hours. Specific organelle Nissl bodies of neurons were observed under transmission electron microscopy. Results of membrane potential showed that fluorescence intensity of cells was greater after 5 hours than adipose-derived stromal cells prior to induction. In addition, following stimulation with high-concentration potassium solution, fluorescence intensity increased. These experimental findings suggested that neurons differentiated from adipose-derived stromal cells and expressed mature K+ channels. In addition, following stimulation with high potassium solution, the membrane potential depolarized and fired an action potential, confirming that the induced cells possessed electrophysiological functions.

  7. Segregated cholinergic transmission modulates dopamine neurons integrated in distinct functional circuits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dautan, Daniel; Souza, Albert S; Huerta-Ocampo, Icnelia; Valencia, Miguel; Assous, Maxime; Witten, Ilana B; Deisseroth, Karl; Tepper, James M; Bolam, J Paul; Gerdjikov, Todor V; Mena-Segovia, Juan

    2016-08-01

    Dopamine neurons in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) receive cholinergic innervation from brainstem structures that are associated with either movement or reward. Whereas cholinergic neurons of the pedunculopontine nucleus (PPN) carry an associative/motor signal, those of the laterodorsal tegmental nucleus (LDT) convey limbic information. We used optogenetics and in vivo juxtacellular recording and labeling to examine the influence of brainstem cholinergic innervation of distinct neuronal subpopulations in the VTA. We found that LDT cholinergic axons selectively enhanced the bursting activity of mesolimbic dopamine neurons that were excited by aversive stimulation. In contrast, PPN cholinergic axons activated and changed the discharge properties of VTA neurons that were integrated in distinct functional circuits and were inhibited by aversive stimulation. Although both structures conveyed a reinforcing signal, they had opposite roles in locomotion. Our results demonstrate that two modes of cholinergic transmission operate in the VTA and segregate the neurons involved in different reward circuits.

  8. Dopaminergic Neurons Controlling Anterior Pituitary Functions: Anatomy and Ontogenesis in Zebrafish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fontaine, Romain; Affaticati, Pierre; Bureau, Charlotte; Colin, Ingrid; Demarque, Michaël; Dufour, Sylvie; Vernier, Philippe; Yamamoto, Kei; Pasqualini, Catherine

    2015-08-01

    Dopaminergic (DA) neurons located in the preoptico-hypothalamic region of the brain exert a major neuroendocrine control on reproduction, growth, and homeostasis by regulating the secretion of anterior pituitary (or adenohypophysis) hormones. Here, using a retrograde tract tracing experiment, we identified the neurons playing this role in the zebrafish. The DA cells projecting directly to the anterior pituitary are localized in the most anteroventral part of the preoptic area, and we named them preoptico-hypophyseal DA (POHDA) neurons. During development, these neurons do not appear before 72 hours postfertilization (hpf) and are the last dopaminergic cell group to differentiate. We found that the number of neurons in this cell population continues to increase throughout life proportionally to the growth of the fish. 5-Bromo-2'-deoxyuridine incorporation analysis suggested that this increase is due to continuous neurogenesis and not due to a phenotypic change in already-existing neurons. Finally, expression profiles of several genes (foxg1a, dlx2a, and nr4a2a/b) were different in the POHDA compared with the adjacent suprachiasmatic DA neurons, suggesting that POHDA neurons develop as a distinct DA cell population in the preoptic area. This study offers some insights into the regional identity of the preoptic area and provides the first bases for future functional genetic studies on the development of DA neurons controlling anterior pituitary functions.

  9. Low oxygen alters mitochondrial function and response to oxidative stress in human neural progenitor cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yury M. Lages

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Oxygen concentration should be carefully regulated in all living tissues, beginning at the early embryonic stages. Unbalances in oxygen regulation can lead to cell death and disease. However, to date, few studies have investigated the consequences of variations in oxygen levels for fetal-like cells. Therefore, in the present work, human neural progenitor cells (NPCs derived from pluripotent stem cells grown in 3% oxygen (v/v were compared with NPCs cultured in 21% (v/v oxygen. Low oxygen concentrations altered the mitochondrial content and oxidative functions of the cells, which led to improved ATP production, while reducing generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS. NPCs cultured in both conditions showed no differences in proliferation and glucose metabolism. Furthermore, antioxidant enzymatic activity was not altered in NPCs cultured in 3% oxygen under normal conditions, however, when exposed to external agents known to induce oxidative stress, greater susceptibility to DNA damage was observed. Our findings indicate that the management of oxygen levels should be considered for in vitro models of neuronal development and drug screening.

  10. Alterations in the structure of neuronal inhibitory networks in psychiatric disorders

    OpenAIRE

    Gilabert Juan, Javier

    2013-01-01

    Introducción El trabajo de investigación de la presente Tesis doctoral realizado por Javier Gilabert Juan, ha estado centrado en el estudio de la plasticidad estructural neuronal de interneuronas en trastornos psiquiátricos, abordado desde diferentes estrategias de estudio: modelos animales, estudios en muestras de cerebro postmortem de pacientes con enfermedades psiquiátricas y estudios de asociación. Durante los últimos años, diversos trabajos han puesto de manifiesto que cierta...

  11. Initial Observations of Fruit Fly;s Flight with its b1 Motor Neuron Altered

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Z. Jane; Melfi, James, Jr.

    2015-11-01

    Recently we have suggested that one of the fly's 17 steering muscles, the first basalar muscle (b1) is responsible for maintaining flight stability. To test this, we compare the flight behavior of normal flies with genetically modified flies whose motor neuron to the b1 muscle is silenced. We report our initial observation of the difference and similarity between these two lines supplied by Janelia Farm. We also discuss the basic question for quantifying flight, what makes a good flier? Partly supported by the Visiting Scientist program at HHMI-Janelia Farm.

  12. Striatal astrocytes transdifferentiate into functional mature neurons following ischemic brain injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duan, Chun-Ling; Liu, Chong-Wei; Shen, Shu-Wen; Yu, Zhang; Mo, Jia-Lin; Chen, Xian-Hua; Sun, Feng-Yan

    2015-09-01

    To determine whether reactive astrocytes stimulated by brain injury can transdifferentiate into functional new neurons, we labeled these cells by injecting a glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) targeted enhanced green fluorescence protein plasmid (pGfa2-eGFP plasmid) into the striatum of adult rats immediately following a transient middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) and performed immunolabeling with specific neuronal markers to trace the neural fates of eGFP-expressing (GFP(+)) reactive astrocytes. The results showed that a portion of striatal GFP(+) astrocytes could transdifferentiate into immature neurons at 1 week after MCAO and mature neurons at 2 weeks as determined by double staining GFP-expressing cells with βIII-tubulin (GFP(+)-Tuj-1(+)) and microtubule associated protein-2 (GFP(+)-MAP-2(+)), respectively. GFP(+) neurons further expressed choline acetyltransferase, glutamic acid decarboxylase, dopamine receptor D2-like family proteins, and the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor subunit R2, indicating that astrocyte-derived neurons could develop into cholinergic or GABAergic neurons and express dopamine and glutamate receptors on their membranes. Electron microscopy analysis indicated that GFP(+) neurons could form synapses with other neurons at 13 weeks after MCAO. Electrophysiological recordings revealed that action potentials and active postsynaptic currents could be recorded in the neuron-like GFP(+) cells but not in the astrocyte-like GFP(+) cells, demonstrating that new GFP(+) neurons possessed the capacity to fire action potentials and receive synaptic inputs. These results demonstrated that striatal astrocyte-derived new neurons participate in the rebuilding of functional neural networks, a fundamental basis for brain repair after injury. These results may lead to new therapeutic strategies for enhancing brain repair after ischemic stroke.

  13. Diverse Roles of Axonemal Dyneins in Drosophila Auditory Neuron Function and Mechanical Amplification in Hearing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karak, Somdatta; Jacobs, Julie S; Kittelmann, Maike; Spalthoff, Christian; Katana, Radoslaw; Sivan-Loukianova, Elena; Schon, Michael A; Kernan, Maurice J; Eberl, Daniel F; Göpfert, Martin C

    2015-11-26

    Much like vertebrate hair cells, the chordotonal sensory neurons that mediate hearing in Drosophila are motile and amplify the mechanical input of the ear. Because the neurons bear mechanosensory primary cilia whose microtubule axonemes display dynein arms, we hypothesized that their motility is powered by dyneins. Here, we describe two axonemal dynein proteins that are required for Drosophila auditory neuron function, localize to their primary cilia, and differently contribute to mechanical amplification in hearing. Promoter fusions revealed that the two axonemal dynein genes Dmdnah3 (=CG17150) and Dmdnai2 (=CG6053) are expressed in chordotonal neurons, including the auditory ones in the fly's ear. Null alleles of both dyneins equally abolished electrical auditory neuron responses, yet whereas mutations in Dmdnah3 facilitated mechanical amplification, amplification was abolished by mutations in Dmdnai2. Epistasis analysis revealed that Dmdnah3 acts downstream of Nan-Iav channels in controlling the amplificatory gain. Dmdnai2, in addition to being required for amplification, was essential for outer dynein arms in auditory neuron cilia. This establishes diverse roles of axonemal dyneins in Drosophila auditory neuron function and links auditory neuron motility to primary cilia and axonemal dyneins. Mutant defects in sperm competition suggest that both dyneins also function in sperm motility.

  14. Altered small-world efficiency of brain functional networks in acupuncture at ST36: a functional MRI study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bo Liu

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Acupuncture in humans can produce clinical effects via the central nervous system. However, the neural substrates of acupuncture's effects remain largely unknown. RESULTS: We utilized functional MRI to investigate the topological efficiency of brain functional networks in eighteen healthy young adults who were scanned before and after acupuncture at the ST36 acupoints (ACUP and its sham point (SHAM. Whole-brain functional networks were constructed by thresholding temporal correlations matrices of ninety brain regions, followed by a graph theory-based analysis. We showed that brain functional networks exhibited small-world attributes (high local and global efficiency regardless of the order of acupuncture and stimulus points, a finding compatible with previous studies of brain functional networks. Furthermore, the brain networks had increased local efficiency after ACUP stimulation but there were no significant differences after SHAM, indicating a specificity of acupuncture point in coordinating local information flow over the whole brain. Moreover, significant (P<0.05, corrected by false discovery rate approach effects of only acupuncture point were detected on nodal degree of the left hippocampus (higher nodal degree at ACUP as compared to SHAM. Using an uncorrected P<0.05, point-related effects were also observed in the anterior cingulate cortex, frontal and occipital regions while stimulation-related effects in various brain regions of frontal, parietal and occipital cortex regions. In addition, we found that several limbic and subcortical brain regions exhibited point- and stimulation-related alterations in their regional homogeneity (P<0.05, uncorrected. CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that acupuncture modulates topological organization of whole-brain functional brain networks and the modulation has point specificity. These findings provide new insights into neuronal mechanism of acupuncture from the perspective of functional

  15. Differential alterations in striatal acetylcholine function in rats during 12 months' continuous administration of haloperidol, sulpiride, or clozapine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rupniak, N M; Briggs, R S; Petersen, M M; Mann, S; Reavill, C; Jenner, P; Marsden, C D

    1986-01-01

    Rats were treated continuously for 12 months with therapeutically equivalent doses of either haloperidol (1.4-1.6 mg/kg/day), sulpiride (102-109 mg/kg/day), or clozapine (24-27 mg/kg/day). After treatment for 3 and 12 months with haloperidol or clozapine but not sulpiride, striatal acetylcholine levels were increased. Striatal choline acetyltransferase activity was not altered by any drug treatment. Vmax for striatal acetylcholinesterase activity during the course of 12 months' treatment with haloperidol or clozapine, but not with sulpiride, tended to increase; Km was not altered by any drug treatment. Bmax for specific striatal [3H]quinuclidinyl benzilate binding was not altered by haloperidol or sulpiride treatment but was transiently elevated after 6 months of clozapine treatment, thereafter returning to control levels. Kd was not altered by any drug treatment. These findings indicate that alterations in striatal acetylcholine content caused by chronic treatment with some but not all neuroleptics are due to changes in cholinergic neuronal activity rather than neurotransmitter synthesis or destruction. The effects of haloperidol but not those of clozapine may be related to the emergence of functional striatal dopamine receptor supersensitivity. Since haloperidol (which is associated with a high prevalence of tardive dyskinesias) but not clozapine (which is not) had similar effects on striatal cholinergic function, the latter may not be related to the emergence of tardive dyskinesias during chronic therapy.

  16. The presence of cortical neurons in striatal-cortical co-cultures alters the effects of dopamine and BDNF on Medium Spiny Neuron dendritic development

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    Rachel D Penrod

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Medium spiny neurons (MSNs are the major striatal neuron and receive synaptic input from both glutamatergic and dopaminergic afferents. These synapses are made on MSN dendritic spines, which undergo density and morphology changes in association with numerous disease and experience-dependent states. Despite wide interest in the structure and function of mature MSNs, relatively little is known about MSN development. Furthermore, most in vitro studies of MSN development have been done in simple striatal cultures that lack any type of non-autologous synaptic input, leaving open the question of how MSN development is affected by a complex environment that includes other types of neurons, glia, and accompanying secreted and cell-associated cues. Here we characterize the development of MSNs in striatal-cortical co-culture, including quantitative morphological analysis of dendritic arborization and spine development, describing progressive changes in density and morphology of developing spines. Overall, MSN growth is much more robust in the striatal-cortical co-culture compared to striatal mono-culture. Inclusion of dopamine in the co-culture further enhances MSN dendritic arborization and spine density, but the effects of dopamine on dendritic branching are only significant at later times in development. In contrast, exogenous Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF has only a minimal effect on MSN development in the co-culture, but significantly enhances MSN dendritic arborization in striatal mono-culture. Importantly, inhibition of NMDA receptors in the co-culture significantly enhances the effect of exogenous BDNF, suggesting that the efficacy of BDNF depends on the cellular environment. Combined, these studies identify specific periods of MSN development that may be particularly sensitive to perturbation by external factors and demonstrate the importance of studying MSN development in a complex signaling environment.

  17. Alterations of blood brain barrier function in hyperammonemia: an overview.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skowrońska, Marta; Albrecht, Jan

    2012-02-01

    Ammonia is a neurotoxin involved in the pathogenesis of neurological conditions associated with hyperammonemia, including hepatic encephalopathy, a condition associated with acute--(ALF) or chronic liver failure. This article reviews evidence that apart from directly affecting the metabolism and function of the central nervous system cells, ammonia influences the passage of different molecules across the blood brain barrier (BBB). A brief description is provided of the tight junctions, which couple adjacent cerebral capillary endothelial cells to each other to form the barrier. Ammonia modulates the transcellular passage of low-to medium-size molecules, by affecting their carriers located at the BBB. Ammonia induces interrelated aberrations of the transport of the large neutral amino acids and aromatic amino acids (AAA), whose influx is augmented by exchange with glutamine produced in the course of ammonia detoxification, and maybe also modulated by the extracellularly acting gamma-glutamyl moiety transferring enzyme, gamma-glutamyl-transpeptidase. Impaired AAA transport affects neurotransmission by altering intracerebral synthesis of catecholamines (serotonin and dopamine), and producing "false neurotransmitters" (octopamine and phenylethylamine). Ammonia also modulates BBB transport of the cationic amino acids: the nitric oxide precursor, arginine, and ornithine, which is an ammonia trap, and affects the transport of energy metabolites glucose and creatine. Moreover, ammonia acting either directly or in synergy with liver injury-derived inflammatory cytokines also evokes subtle increases of the transcellular passage of molecules of different size (BBB "leakage"), which appears to be responsible for the vasogenic component of cerebral edema associated with ALF.

  18. The APP670/671 mutation alters calcium signaling and response to hyperosmotic stress in rat primary hippocampal neurons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kloskowska, Ewa; Bruton, Joseph D; Winblad, Bengt;

    2008-01-01

    on the effect of the APP670/671 mutation on spontaneous calcium oscillations in embryonic hippocampal neurons derived from the tg6590 transgenic rat. Intracellular free calcium levels were imaged by confocal microscopy using the fluorescent dye fluo-3AM. Hyperosmotic shrinkage, which can occur in a variety......Altered calcium homeostasis is implicated in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease and much effort has been put into understanding the association between the autosomal dominant gene mutations causative of this devastating disease and perturbed calcium signaling. We have focused our attention...... of pathophysiological conditions, has been shown to induce multiple cellular responses, including activation of volume-regulatory ion transport, cytoskeletal reorganization, and cell death. When exposed to hyperosmotic stress (addition of 50mM sucrose) the frequency of calcium oscillations was suppressed to an equal...

  19. The regulation and function of fibroblast growth factor 8 and its function during gonadotropin-releasing hormone neuron development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wilson CJ Chung

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Over the last few years, numerous studies solidified the hypothesis that fibroblast growth factor (FGF signaling regulates neuroendocrine progenitor cell proliferation, fate-specification, and cell survival, and therefore is critical for the regulation and maintenance of homeostasis of the body. One important example that underscores the involvement of FGF signaling during neuroendocrine cell development is gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH neuron ontogenesis. Indeed, transgenic mice with reduced olfactory placode (OP Fgf8 expression do not have GnRH neurons. This observation indicates the requirement of FGF8 signaling for the emergence of the gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH neuronal system in the embryonic OP, the putative birth place of GnRH neurons. Mammalian reproductive success depends on the presence of GnRH neurons to stimulate gonadotropin secretion from the anterior pituitary, which activates gonadal steroidogenesis and gametogenesis. Together, these observations are critical for understanding the function of GnRH neurons and their control of the hypothalamus-pituitary-gonadal (HPG axis to maintain fertility. Taken together, these studies illustrate that GnRH neuron emergence, and hence HPG-function is vulnerable to genomic and molecular signals that abnormally modify Fgf8 expression in the developing mouse OP. In this short review, we focus on research that is aimed at unraveling how androgen, all-trans retinoic acid and epigenetic modifies control mouse OP Fgf8 transcription in the context of GnRH neuronal development, and mammalian reproductive success.

  20. The cell-autonomous role of excitatory synaptic transmission in the regulation of neuronal structure and function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Wei; Bushong, Eric A; Shih, Tiffany P; Ellisman, Mark H; Nicoll, Roger A

    2013-05-08

    The cell-autonomous role of synaptic transmission in the regulation of neuronal structural and electrical properties is unclear. We have now employed a genetic approach to eliminate glutamatergic synaptic transmission onto individual CA1 pyramidal neurons in a mosaic fashion in vivo. Surprisingly, while electrical properties are profoundly affected in these neurons, as well as inhibitory synaptic transmission, we found little perturbation of neuronal morphology, demonstrating a functional segregation of excitatory synaptic transmission from neuronal morphological development.

  1. Genetically encoded tools: bridging the gap between neuronal identity and function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cho, Yong Ku

    2015-01-21

    Genetically encoded tools are positioned to serve a unique and critical role in bridging the gap between the genetic identity of neurons and their functional properties. However, the use of these tools is limited by our current understanding of cell-type identity. As we make technological advances that focus on capturing functional aspects of neurons such as connectivity, activity, and metabolic states, our understanding of neuronal identity will deepen and may enable the use of genetically encoded tools for modulating disease-specific circuits for therapeutic purposes.

  2. Defects in the COG complex and COG-related trafficking regulators affect neuronal Golgi function.

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    Leslie K Climer

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The Conserved Oligomeric Golgi (COG complex is an evolutionarily conserved hetero-octameric protein complex that has been proposed to organize vesicle tethering at the Golgi apparatus. Defects in seven of the eight COG subunits are linked to Congenital Disorders of Glycosylation (CDG-type II, a family of rare diseases involving misregulation of protein glycosylation, alterations in Golgi structure, variations in retrograde trafficking through the Golgi and system-wide clinical pathologies. A troublesome aspect of these diseases are the neurological pathologies such as low IQ, microcephaly and cerebellar atrophy. The essential function of the COG complex is dependent upon interactions with other components of trafficking machinery, such as Rab-GTPases and SNAREs. COG-interacting Rabs and SNAREs have been implicated in neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. Defects in Golgi maintenance disrupts trafficking and processing of essential proteins, frequently associated with and contributing to compromised neuron function and human disease. Despite the recent advances in molecular neuroscience, the subcellular bases for most neurodegenerative diseases are poorly understood. This article gives an overview of the potential contributions of the COG complex and its Rab and SNARE partners in the pathogenesis of different neurodegenerative disorders.

  3. Exploring patterns of alteration in Alzheimer’s disease brain networks: a combined structural and functional connectomics analysis

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    Fulvia Palesi

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Alzheimer’s disease (AD is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by a severe derangement of cognitive functions, primarily memory, in elderly subjects. As far as the functional impairment is concerned, growing evidence supports the disconnection syndrome hypothesis. Recent investigations using fMRI have revealed a generalized alteration of resting state networks in patients affected by AD and mild cognitive impairment (MCI. However, it was unclear whether the changes in functional connectivity were accompanied by corresponding structural network changes. In this work, we have developed a novel structural/functional connectomic approach: resting state fMRI was used to identify the functional cortical network nodes and diffusion MRI to reconstruct the fiber tracts to give a weight to internodal subcortical connections. Then, local and global efficiency were determined for different networks, exploring specific alterations of integration and segregation patterns in AD and MCI patients compared to healthy controls (HC. In the default mode network (DMN, that was the most affected, axonal loss and reduced axonal integrity appeared to compromise both local and global efficiency along posterior-anterior connections. In the basal ganglia network (BGN, disruption of white matter integrity implied that main alterations occurred in local microstructure. In the anterior insular network (AIN, neuronal loss probably subtended a compromised communication with the insular cortex. Cognitive performance, evaluated by neuropsychological examinations, revealed a dependency on integration and segregation of brain networks. These findings are indicative of the fact that cognitive deficits in AD could be associated not only with cortical alterations (revealed by fMRI but also with subcortical alterations (revealed by diffusion MRI that extend beyond the areas primarily damaged by neurodegeneration, towards the support of an emerging concept of AD as a

  4. A default mode of brain function in altered states of consciousness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guldenmund, P; Vanhaudenhuyse, A; Boly, M; Laureys, S; Soddu, A

    2012-01-01

    Using modern brain imaging techniques, new discoveries are being made concerning the spontaneous activity of the brain when it is devoid of attention-demanding tasks. Spatially separated patches of neuronal assemblies have been found to show synchronized oscillatory activity behavior and are said to be functionally connected. One of the most robust of these is the default mode network, which is associated with intrinsic processes like mind wandering and self-projection. Furthermore, activity in this network is anticorrelated with activity in a network that is linked to attention to external stimuli. The integrity of both networks is disturbed in altered states of consciousness, like sleep, general anesthesia and hypnosis. In coma and related disorders of consciousness, encompassing the vegetative state (unresponsive wakefulness syndrome) and minimally conscious state, default mode network integrity correlates with the level of remaining consciousness, offering the possibility of using this information for diagnostic and prognostic purposes. Functional brain imaging is currently being validated as a valuable addition to the standardized behavioral assessments that are already in use.

  5. Ascl1 Converts Dorsal Midbrain Astrocytes into Functional Neurons In Vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yueguang; Miao, Qinglong; Yuan, Jiacheng; Han, Su'e; Zhang, Panpan; Li, Sanlan; Rao, Zhiping; Zhao, Wenlong; Ye, Qian; Geng, Junlan; Zhang, Xiaohui; Cheng, Leping

    2015-06-24

    In vivo induction of non-neuronal cells into neurons by transcription factors offers potential therapeutic approaches for neural regeneration. Although generation of induced neuronal (iN) cells in vitro and in vivo has been reported, whether iN cells can be fully integrated into existing circuits remains unclear. Here we show that expression of achaete-scute complex homolog-like 1 (Ascl1) alone is sufficient to convert dorsal midbrain astrocytes of mice into functional iN cells in vitro and in vivo. Specific expression of Ascl1 in astrocytes by infection with GFAP-adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector converts astrocytes in dorsal midbrain, striatum, and somatosensory cortex of postnatal and adult mice into functional neurons in vivo. These iN cells mature progressively, exhibiting neuronal morphology and markers, action potentials, and synaptic inputs from and output to existing neurons. Thus, a single transcription factor, Ascl1, is sufficient to convert brain astrocytes into functional neurons, and GFAP-AAV is an efficient vector for generating iN cells from astrocytes in vivo.

  6. Spatio-temporal regulations and functions of neuronal alternative RNA splicing in developing and adult brains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iijima, Takatoshi; Hidaka, Chiharu; Iijima, Yoko

    2016-08-01

    Alternative pre-mRNA splicing is a fundamental mechanism that generates molecular diversity from a single gene. In the central nervous system (CNS), key neural developmental steps are thought to be controlled by alternative splicing decisions, including the molecular diversity underlying synaptic wiring, plasticity, and remodeling. Significant progress has been made in understanding the molecular mechanisms and functions of alternative pre-mRNA splicing in neurons through studies in invertebrate systems; however, recent studies have begun to uncover the potential role of neuronal alternative splicing in the mammalian CNS. This article provides an overview of recent findings regarding the regulation and function of neuronal alternative splicing. In particular, we focus on the spatio-temporal regulation of neurexin, a synaptic adhesion molecule, by neuronal cell type-specific factors and neuronal activity, which are thought to be especially important for characterizing neural development and function within the mammalian CNS. Notably, there is increasing evidence that implicates the dysregulation of neuronal splicing events in several neurological disorders. Therefore, understanding the detailed mechanisms of neuronal alternative splicing in the mammalian CNS may provide plausible treatment strategies for these diseases.

  7. Muscle fatigue in frog semitendinosus: alterations in contractile function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, L. V.; Balog, E. M.; Riley, D. A.; Fitts, R. H.

    1992-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to characterize the contractile properties of the frog semitendinosus (ST) muscle before and during recovery from fatigue, to relate the observed functional changes to alterations in specific steps in the crossbridge model of muscle contraction, and to determine how fatigue affects the force-frequency relationship. The frog ST (22 degrees C) was fatigued by direct electrical stimulation with 100-ms 150-Hz trains at 1/s for 5 min. The fatigue protocol reduced peak twitch (Pt) and tetanic (Po) force to 32 and 8.5% of initial force, respectively. The decline in Pt was less than Po, in part due to a prolongation in the isometric contraction time (CT), which increased to 300% of the initial value. The isometric twitch duration was greatly prolonged as reflected by the lengthened CT and the 800% increase in the one-half relaxation time (1/2RT). Both Pt and Po showed a biphasic recovery, a rapid initial phase (2 min) followed by a slower (40 min) return to the prefatigue force. CT and 1/2RT also recovered in two phases, returning to 160 and 265% of control in the first 5 min. CT returned to the prefatigue value between 35 and 40 min, whereas even at 60 min 1/2RT was 133% of control. The maximal velocity of shortening, determined by the slack test, was significantly reduced [from 6.7 +/- 0.5 to 2.5 +/- 0.4 optimal muscle length/s] at fatigue. The force-frequency relationship was shifted to the left, so that optimal frequency for generating Po was reduced.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS).

  8. Transient oxytocin signaling primes the development and function of excitatory hippocampal neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ripamonti, Silvia; Ambrozkiewicz, Mateusz C; Guzzi, Francesca; Gravati, Marta; Biella, Gerardo; Bormuth, Ingo; Hammer, Matthieu; Tuffy, Liam P; Sigler, Albrecht; Kawabe, Hiroshi; Nishimori, Katsuhiko; Toselli, Mauro; Brose, Nils; Parenti, Marco; Rhee, JeongSeop

    2017-02-23

    Beyond its role in parturition and lactation, oxytocin influences higher brain processes that control social behavior of mammals, and perturbed oxytocin signaling has been linked to the pathogenesis of several psychiatric disorders. However, it is still largely unknown how oxytocin exactly regulates neuronal function. We show that early, transient oxytocin exposure in vitro inhibits the development of hippocampal glutamatergic neurons, leading to reduced dendrite complexity, synapse density, and excitatory transmission, while sparing GABAergic neurons. Conversely, genetic elimination of oxytocin receptors increases the expression of protein components of excitatory synapses and excitatory synaptic transmission in vitro. In vivo, oxytocin-receptor-deficient hippocampal pyramidal neurons develop more complex dendrites, which leads to increased spine number and reduced γ-oscillations. These results indicate that oxytocin controls the development of hippocampal excitatory neurons and contributes to the maintenance of a physiological excitation/inhibition balance, whose disruption can cause neurobehavioral disturbances.

  9. Molecular anatomy of neuronal interactions with special reference to the dopamine control of striatal functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. Bloch

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Modern neuroanatomy was initiated at the early beginning of the XXth century when Cajal used the so-called silver impregnation technique to study the details of the anatomy of the nervous system. This technique, for the first time, permitted description and visualization of all components of neurons (Cajal, 1909. Thanks to this major methodological advance, Cajal and followers created microscopic neuroanatomy and gave detailed description of the structure of neurons and of neuronal circuitry in brain of animals and humans. During the following decades, numerous informations were obtained on the organization of the neuronal circuitry in all parts of the central and peripheral nervous system, in normal, experimental and pathological conditions. These works considerably helped to establish the modern anatomical basis of brain functions and dysfunctions. In the early sixties, the appearance of electron microscopy gave a new impulse to the understanding of brain and neuronal structures.

  10. Altered hippocampal function before emotional trauma in rats susceptible to PTSD-like behaviors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nalloor, Rebecca; Bunting, Kristopher M; Vazdarjanova, Almira

    2014-07-01

    Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is an anxiety disorder that occurs after experiencing a traumatic event. Susceptibility to PTSD exists, as only some trauma-exposed individuals develop this condition. Investigating susceptibilities in animal models can contribute to understanding the etiology of the disorder. We previously reported an animal model which allows reliable pre-classification of rats as susceptible (Sus) or resistant (Res) to developing a PTSD-like phenotype after a later trauma. Here we report that Sus, compared to Res, rats have altered hippocampal function, along the septo-temporal axis, prior to experiencing a traumatic event. In Experiment I, Res and Sus rats explored a novel box twice. Using a cellular imaging method for assessing plasticity-related immediate-early gene expression in large neuronal ensembles, Arc/Homer1a catFISH, we show that Sus rats have smaller vCA3 ensembles during the second exploration. This suppressed vCA3 activation in Sus rats was not due to a difference in exploratory behavior, or to a difference in Arc/Homer1a expression in the basolateral amygdala (BLA). BLA is a main source of inputs to vCA3, but both the ensemble size and overlap of BLA ensembles activated during the two explorations was similar to that of Res rats. Additionally, Sus rats had significant 'infidelity' in their dorsal hippocampal representations of the second event: a lower overlap, compared to Res rats, of Arc/Homer1a-expressing ensembles activated during the two explorations (the size of the ensembles were similar to those of Res rats). These differences were revealed only in conditions of relatively low stress, because they were not observed when Sus and Res rats experienced fear conditioning (Experiment II). Combined, the findings show that altered hippocampal function exists before experiencing emotional trauma in susceptible rats and suggest that this is a risk factor for PTSD.

  11. Niche-dependent development of functional neuronal networks from embryonic stem cell-derived neural populations

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    Siebler Mario

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The present work was performed to investigate the ability of two different embryonic stem (ES cell-derived neural precursor populations to generate functional neuronal networks in vitro. The first ES cell-derived neural precursor population was cultivated as free-floating neural aggregates which are known to form a developmental niche comprising different types of neural cells, including neural precursor cells (NPCs, progenitor cells and even further matured cells. This niche provides by itself a variety of different growth factors and extracellular matrix proteins that influence the proliferation and differentiation of neural precursor and progenitor cells. The second population was cultivated adherently in monolayer cultures to control most stringently the extracellular environment. This population comprises highly homogeneous NPCs which are supposed to represent an attractive way to provide well-defined neuronal progeny. However, the ability of these different ES cell-derived immature neural cell populations to generate functional neuronal networks has not been assessed so far. Results While both precursor populations were shown to differentiate into sufficient quantities of mature NeuN+ neurons that also express GABA or vesicular-glutamate-transporter-2 (vGlut2, only aggregate-derived neuronal populations exhibited a synchronously oscillating network activity 2–4 weeks after initiating the differentiation as detected by the microelectrode array technology. Neurons derived from homogeneous NPCs within monolayer cultures did merely show uncorrelated spiking activity even when differentiated for up to 12 weeks. We demonstrated that these neurons exhibited sparsely ramified neurites and an embryonic vGlut2 distribution suggesting an inhibited terminal neuronal maturation. In comparison, neurons derived from heterogeneous populations within neural aggregates appeared as fully mature with a dense neurite network and punctuated

  12. Altered neurotransmitter metabolism in adolescents with high-functioning autism

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Drenthen, G.S.; Barendse, E.M.; Aldenkamp, A.P.; Veenendaal, T. van; Puts, N.A.J.; Edden, R.A.E.; Zinger, S.; Thoonen, G.H.J.; Hendriks, M.P.H.; Kessels, R.P.C.; Jansen, J.F.A.

    2016-01-01

    Previous studies have suggested that alterations in excitatory/inhibitory neurotransmitters might play a crucial role in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H-MRS) can provide valuable information about abnormal brain metabolism and neurotransmitter concentration

  13. Structural and functional changes of neuronal and glial components of the feline enteric nervous system in cats with chronic inflammatory and non-inflammatory diseases of the gastrointestinal tract.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleinschmidt, Sven; Nolte, Ingo; Hewicker-Trautwein, Marion

    2011-12-01

    Immunohistochemical examinations of the enteric nervous system (ENS) were performed on biopsies of healthy cats and compared to findings in cats suffering from inflammatory bowel disease or intestinal lymphoma. In lymphocytic-plasmacytic enterocolitis all affected samples had significant reductions in glial fibrillary acidic protein and vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP) and mostly of neuron-specific enolase (NSE) possibly reflecting alterations in enteric glial cells and neurons. In cases with eosinophilic gastroenterocolitis significantly reduced phosphorylated neurofilament (PN) expression was present suggesting a disturbance in neuronal cytoskeleton, whereas cats with fibrosing enteropathy had reduced expression of NSE, non-phosphorylated neurofilaments (NPN), PN and VIP, possibly reflecting neuronal disturbances. In cases with intestinal lymphoma only the reduction in PN and the increase in NPN were obvious suggesting direct damage or interference of neoplastic cells with enteric neurons. In conclusion, structural and functional alterations of the ENS may contribute to clinically evident signs of vomiting and/or diarrhea.

  14. Prions, From Structure to Epigenetics and Neuronal Functions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindquist, Susan

    2012-02-01

    Prions are a unique type of protein that can misfold and convert other proteins to the same shape. The well-characterized yeast prion [PSI+] is formed from an inactive amyloid fiber conformation of the translation-termination factor, Sup35. This altered conformation is passed from mother cells to daughters, acting as a template to perpetuate the prion state and providing a mechanism of protein-based inheritance. We employed a variety of methods to determine the structure of Sup35 amyloid fibrils. First, using fluorescent tags and cross-linking we identified specific segments of the protein monomer that form intermolecular contacts in a ``Head-to-Head,'' ``Tail-to-Tail'' fashion while a central region forms intramolecular contacts. Then, using peptide arrays we mapped the region responsible for the prion transmission barrier between two different yeast species. We have also used optical tweezers to reveal that the non-covalent intermolecular contacts between monomers are unusually strong, and maintain fibril integrity even under forces that partially unfold individual monomers and extend fibril length. Based on the handful of known yeast prion proteins we predicted sequences that could be responsible for prion-like amyloid folding. Our screen identified 19 new candidate prions, whose protein-folding properties and diverse cellular functions we have characterized using a combination of genetic and biochemical techniques. Prion-driven phenotypic diversity increases under stress, and can be amplified by the dynamic maturation of prion-initiating states. These qualities allow prions to act as ``bet-hedging'' devices that facilitate the adaptation of yeast to stressful environments, and might speed the evolution of new traits. Together with Kandel and Si, we have also found that a regulatory protein that plays an important role in synaptic plasticity behaves as a prion in yeast. Cytoplasmic polyAdenylation element binding protein, CPEB, maintains synapses by promoting

  15. Three Types of Cortical Layer 5 Neurons That Differ in Brain-wide Connectivity and Function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Euiseok J; Juavinett, Ashley L; Kyubwa, Espoir M; Jacobs, Matthew W; Callaway, Edward M

    2015-12-16

    Cortical layer 5 (L5) pyramidal neurons integrate inputs from many sources and distribute outputs to cortical and subcortical structures. Previous studies demonstrate two L5 pyramid types: cortico-cortical (CC) and cortico-subcortical (CS). We characterize connectivity and function of these cell types in mouse primary visual cortex and reveal a new subtype. Unlike previously described L5 CC and CS neurons, this new subtype does not project to striatum [cortico-cortical, non-striatal (CC-NS)] and has distinct morphology, physiology, and visual responses. Monosynaptic rabies tracing reveals that CC neurons preferentially receive input from higher visual areas, while CS neurons receive more input from structures implicated in top-down modulation of brain states. CS neurons are also more direction-selective and prefer faster stimuli than CC neurons. These differences suggest distinct roles as specialized output channels, with CS neurons integrating information and generating responses more relevant to movement control and CC neurons being more important in visual perception.

  16. Neurotransmission to parasympathetic cardiac vagal neurons in the brain stem is altered with left ventricular hypertrophy-induced heart failure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cauley, Edmund; Wang, Xin; Dyavanapalli, Jhansi; Sun, Ke; Garrott, Kara; Kuzmiak-Glancy, Sarah; Kay, Matthew W; Mendelowitz, David

    2015-10-01

    Hypertension, cardiac hypertrophy, and heart failure (HF) are widespread and debilitating cardiovascular diseases that affect nearly 23 million people worldwide. A distinctive hallmark of these cardiovascular diseases is autonomic imbalance, with increased sympathetic activity and decreased parasympathetic vagal tone. Recent device-based approaches, such as implantable vagal stimulators that stimulate a multitude of visceral sensory and motor fibers in the vagus nerve, are being evaluated as new therapeutic approaches for these and other diseases. However, little is known about how parasympathetic activity to the heart is altered with these diseases, and this lack of knowledge is an obstacle in the goal of devising selective interventions that can target and selectively restore parasympathetic activity to the heart. To identify the changes that occur within the brain stem to diminish the parasympathetic cardiac activity, left ventricular hypertrophy was elicited in rats by aortic pressure overload using a transaortic constriction approach. Cardiac vagal neurons (CVNs) in the brain stem that generate parasympathetic activity to the heart were identified with a retrograde tracer and studied using patch-clamp electrophysiological recordings in vitro. Animals with left cardiac hypertrophy had diminished excitation of CVNs, which was mediated both by an augmented frequency of spontaneous inhibitory GABAergic neurotransmission (with no alteration of inhibitory glycinergic activity) as well as a diminished amplitude and frequency of excitatory neurotransmission to CVNs. Opportunities to alter these network pathways and neurotransmitter receptors provide future targets of intervention in the goal to restore parasympathetic activity and autonomic balance to the heart in cardiac hypertrophy and other cardiovascular diseases.

  17. Light stimuli control neuronal migration by altering of insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) signaling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ying; Komuro, Yutaro; Fahrion, Jennifer K; Hu, Taofang; Ohno, Nobuhiko; Fenner, Kathleen B; Wooton, Jessica; Raoult, Emilie; Galas, Ludovic; Vaudry, David; Komuro, Hitoshi

    2012-02-14

    The role of genetic inheritance in brain development has been well characterized, but little is known about the contributions of natural environmental stimuli, such as the effect of light-dark cycles, to brain development. In this study, we determined the role of light stimuli in neuronal cell migration to elucidate how environmental factors regulate brain development. We show that in early postnatal mouse cerebella, granule cell migration accelerates during light cycles and decelerates during dark cycles. Furthermore, cerebellar levels of insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) are high during light cycles and low during dark cycles. There are causal relationships between light-dark cycles, speed of granule cell migration, and cerebellar IGF-1 levels. First, changes in light-dark cycles result in corresponding changes in the fluctuations of both speed of granule cell migration and cerebellar IGF-1 levels. Second, in vitro studies indicate that exogenous IGF-1 accelerates the migration of isolated granule cells through the activation of IGF-1 receptors. Third, in vivo studies reveal that inhibiting the IGF-1 receptors decelerates granule cell migration during light cycles (high IGF-1 levels) but does not alter migration during dark cycles (low IGF-1 levels). In contrast, stimulating the IGF-1 receptors accelerates granule cell migration during dark cycles (low IGF-1 levels) but does not alter migration during light cycles (high IGF-1 levels). These results suggest that during early postnatal development light stimuli control granule cell migration by altering the activity of IGF-1 receptors through modification of cerebellar IGF-1 levels.

  18. Mild systemic inflammation and moderate hypoxia transiently alter neuronal excitability in mouse somatosensory cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mordel, Jérôme; Sheikh, Aminah; Tsohataridis, Simeon; Kanold, Patrick O; Zehendner, Christoph M; Luhmann, Heiko J

    2016-04-01

    During the perinatal period, the brain is highly vulnerable to hypoxia and inflammation, which often cause white matter injury and long-term neuronal dysfunction such as motor and cognitive deficits or epileptic seizures. We studied the effects of moderate hypoxia (HYPO), mild systemic inflammation (INFL), or the combination of both (HYPO+INFL) in mouse somatosensory cortex induced during the first postnatal week on network activity and compared it to activity in SHAM control animals. By performing in vitro electrophysiological recordings with multi-electrode arrays from slices prepared directly after injury (P8-10), one week after injury (P13-16), or in young adults (P28-30), we investigated how the neocortical network developed following these insults. No significant difference was observed between the four groups in an extracellular solution close to physiological conditions. In extracellular 8mM potassium solution, slices from the HYPO, INFL, and HYPO+INFL group were more excitable than SHAM at P8-10 and P13-16. In these two age groups, the number and frequency of spontaneous epileptiform events were significantly increased compared to SHAM. The frequency of epileptiform events was significantly reduced by the NMDA antagonist D-APV in HYPO, INFL, and HYPO+INFL, but not in SHAM, indicating a contribution of NMDA receptors to this pathophysiological activity. In addition, the AMPA/kainate receptor antagonist CNQX suppressed the remaining epileptiform activity. Electrical stimulation evoked prominent epileptiform activity in slices from HYPO, INFL and HYPO+INFL animals. Stimulation threshold to elicit epileptiform events was lower in these groups than in SHAM. Evoked events spread over larger areas and lasted longer in treated animals than in SHAM. In addition, the evoked epileptiform activity was reduced in the older (P28-30) group indicating that cortical dysfunction induced by hypoxia and inflammation was transient and compensated during early development.

  19. Ontogeny of Biochemical, Morphological and Functional Parameters of Synaptogenesis in Primary Cultures of Rat Hippocampal and Cortical Neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    AbstractBackground: Synaptogenesis is a critical neurodevelopmental process whereby pre-and postsynaptic neurons form apposed sites of contact specialized for excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmission. Many neurodevelopmental disorders are thought to reflect altered patterns of...

  20. Functional Task Test: 1. Sensorimotor changes Associated with Postflight Alterations in Astronaut Functional Task Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bloomberg, J. J.; Arzeno, N. H.; Buxton, R. E.; Feiveson, A. H.; Kofman, I. S.; Lee, S. M. C.; Miller, C. A.; Mulavara, A. P.; Platts, S. H.; Peters, B. T.; Phillips, T.; Ploutz-Snyder, L. L.; Reschke, M. F.; Ryder, J. W.; Spiering, B. A.; Stenger, M. B.; Taylor, L. C.; Wickwire, P. J.; Wood, S. J.

    2011-01-01

    Space flight is known to cause alterations in multiple physiological systems including changes in sensorimotor, cardiovascular, and neuromuscular systems. These changes may affect a crewmember s ability to perform critical mission tasks immediately after landing on a planetary surface. The overall goal of this project is to determine the effects of space flight on functional tests that are representative of high priority exploration mission tasks and to identify the key underlying physiological factors that contribute to decrements in performance. This presentation will focus on the sensorimotor contributions to postflight functional performance.

  1. Suppression of Sin3A activity promotes differentiation of pluripotent cells into functional neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halder, Debasish; Lee, Chang-Hee; Hyun, Ji Young; Chang, Gyeong-Eon; Cheong, Eunji; Shin, Injae

    2017-01-01

    Sin3 is a transcriptional corepressor for REST silencing machinery that represses multiple neuronal genes in non-neuronal cells. However, functions of Sin3 (Sin3A and Sin3B) in suppression of neuronal phenotypes are not well characterized. Herein we show that Sin3A knockdown impedes the repressive activity of REST and enhances differentiation of pluripotent P19 cells into electrophysiologically active neurons without inducing astrogenesis. It is also found that silencing Sin3B induces neurogenesis of P19 cells with a lower efficiency than Sin3A knockdown. The results suggest that Sin3A has a more profound effect on REST repressive machinery for silencing neuronal genes in P19 cells than Sin3B. Furthermore, we show that a peptide inhibitor of Sin3A-REST interactions promotes differentiation of P19 cells into functional neurons. Observations made in studies using genetic deletion and a synthetic inhibitor suggests that Sin3A plays an important role in the repression of neuronal genes by the REST regulatory mechanism. PMID:28303954

  2. Disruption of ArhGAP15 results in hyperactive Rac1, affects the architecture and function of hippocampal inhibitory neurons and causes cognitive deficits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zamboni, Valentina; Armentano, Maria; Sarò, Gabriella; Ciraolo, Elisa; Ghigo, Alessandra; Germena, Giulia; Umbach, Alessandro; Valnegri, Pamela; Passafaro, Maria; Carabelli, Valentina; Gavello, Daniela; Bianchi, Veronica; D’Adamo, Patrizia; de Curtis, Ivan; El-Assawi, Nadia; Mauro, Alessandro; Priano, Lorenzo; Ferri, Nicola; Hirsch, Emilio; Merlo, Giorgio R.

    2016-01-01

    During brain development, the small GTPases Rac1/Rac3 play key roles in neuronal migration, neuritogenesis, synaptic formation and plasticity, via control of actin cytoskeleton dynamic. Their activity is positively and negatively regulated by GEFs and GAPs molecules, respectively. However their in vivo roles are poorly known. The ArhGAP15 gene, coding for a Rac-specific GAP protein, is expressed in both excitatory and inhibitory neurons of the adult hippocampus, and its loss results in the hyperactivation of Rac1/Rac3. In the CA3 and dentate gyrus (DG) regions of the ArhGAP15 mutant hippocampus the CR+, PV+ and SST+ inhibitory neurons are reduced in number, due to reduced efficiency and directionality of their migration, while pyramidal neurons are unaffected. Loss of ArhGAP15 alters neuritogenesis and the balance between excitatory and inhibitory synapses, with a net functional result consisting in increased spike frequency and bursts, accompanied by poor synchronization. Thus, the loss of ArhGAP15 mainly impacts on interneuron-dependent inhibition. Adult ArhGAP15−/− mice showed defective hippocampus-dependent functions such as working and associative memories. These findings indicate that a normal architecture and function of hippocampal inhibitory neurons is essential for higher hippocampal functions, and is exquisitely sensitive to ArhGAP15-dependent modulation of Rac1/Rac3. PMID:27713499

  3. The role of autophagy in epileptogenesis and in epilepsy-induced neuronal alterations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giorgi, Filippo Sean; Biagioni, Francesca; Lenzi, Paola; Frati, Alessandro; Fornai, Francesco

    2015-06-01

    Recent evidence suggests that autophagy alterations are present in a variety of neurological disorders. These range from neurodegenerative diseases to acute neurological insults. Thus, despite a role of autophagy was investigated in a variety of neurological diseases, only recently these studies included epilepsy. This was fostered by the evidence that rapamycin, a powerful autophagy inducer, strongly modulates a variety of seizure models and epilepsies. These findings were originally interpreted as the results of the inhibition exerted by rapamycin on the molecular complex named "mammalian Target of Rapamycin" (mTOR). Recently, an increasing number of papers demonstrated that mTOR inhibition produces a strong activation of the autophagy machinery. In this way, it is now increasingly recognized that what was once defined as mTORpathy in epileptogenesis may be partially explained by abnormalities in the autophagy machinery. The present review features a brief introductory statement about the autophagy machinery and discusses the involvement of autophagy in seizures and epilepsies. An emphasis is posed on evidence addressing both pros and cons making it sometime puzzling and sometime evident, the role of autophagy in the epileptic brain.

  4. Neutral genetic drift can alter promiscuous protein functions, potentially aiding functional evolution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lu Zhongyi

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Many of the mutations accumulated by naturally evolving proteins are neutral in the sense that they do not significantly alter a protein's ability to perform its primary biological function. However, new protein functions evolve when selection begins to favor other, "promiscuous" functions that are incidental to a protein's original biological role. If mutations that are neutral with respect to a protein's primary biological function cause substantial changes in promiscuous functions, these mutations could enable future functional evolution. Results Here we investigate this possibility experimentally by examining how cytochrome P450 enzymes that have evolved neutrally with respect to activity on a single substrate have changed in their abilities to catalyze reactions on five other substrates. We find that the enzymes have sometimes changed as much as four-fold in the promiscuous activities. The changes in promiscuous activities tend to increase with the number of mutations, and can be largely rationalized in terms of the chemical structures of the substrates. The activities on chemically similar substrates tend to change in a coordinated fashion, potentially providing a route for systematically predicting the change in one activity based on the measurement of several others. Conclusion Our work suggests that initially neutral genetic drift can lead to substantial changes in protein functions that are not currently under selection, in effect poising the proteins to more readily undergo functional evolution should selection favor new functions in the future. Reviewers This article was reviewed by Martijn Huynen, Fyodor Kondrashov, and Dan Tawfik (nominated by Christoph Adami.

  5. TRPM8 function and expression in vagal sensory neurons and afferent nerves innervating guinea pig esophagus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Xiaoyun; Hu, Youtian; Ru, Fei; Kollarik, Marian; Undem, Bradley J; Yu, Shaoyong

    2015-03-15

    Sensory transduction in esophageal afferents requires specific ion channels and receptors. TRPM8 is a new member of the transient receptor potential (TRP) channel family and participates in cold- and menthol-induced sensory transduction, but its role in visceral sensory transduction is still less clear. This study aims to determine TRPM8 function and expression in esophageal vagal afferent subtypes. TRPM8 agonist WS-12-induced responses were first determined in nodose and jugular neurons by calcium imaging and then investigated by whole cell patch-clamp recordings in Dil-labeled esophageal nodose and jugular neurons. Extracellular single-unit recordings were performed in nodose and jugular C fiber neurons using ex vivo esophageal-vagal preparations with intact nerve endings in the esophagus. TRPM8 mRNA expression was determined by single neuron RT-PCR in Dil-labeled esophageal nodose and jugular neurons. The TRPM8 agonist WS-12 elicited calcium influx in a subpopulation of jugular but not nodose neurons. WS-12 activated outwardly rectifying currents in esophageal Dil-labeled jugular but not nodose neurons in a dose-dependent manner, which could be inhibited by the TRPM8 inhibitor AMTB. WS-12 selectively evoked action potential discharges in esophageal jugular but not nodose C fibers. Consistently, TRPM8 transcripts were highly expressed in esophageal Dil-labeled TRPV1-positive jugular neurons. In summary, the present study demonstrated a preferential expression and function of TRPM8 in esophageal vagal jugular but not nodose neurons and C fiber subtypes. This provides a distinctive role of TRPM8 in esophageal sensory transduction and may lead to a better understanding of the mechanisms of esophageal sensation and nociception.

  6. PINK1 is necessary for long term survival and mitochondrial function in human dopaminergic neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alison Wood-Kaczmar

    Full Text Available Parkinson's disease (PD is a common age-related neurodegenerative disease and it is critical to develop models which recapitulate the pathogenic process including the effect of the ageing process. Although the pathogenesis of sporadic PD is unknown, the identification of the mendelian genetic factor PINK1 has provided new mechanistic insights. In order to investigate the role of PINK1 in Parkinson's disease, we studied PINK1 loss of function in human and primary mouse neurons. Using RNAi, we created stable PINK1 knockdown in human dopaminergic neurons differentiated from foetal ventral mesencephalon stem cells, as well as in an immortalised human neuroblastoma cell line. We sought to validate our findings in primary neurons derived from a transgenic PINK1 knockout mouse. For the first time we demonstrate an age dependent neurodegenerative phenotype in human and mouse neurons. PINK1 deficiency leads to reduced long-term viability in human neurons, which die via the mitochondrial apoptosis pathway. Human neurons lacking PINK1 demonstrate features of marked oxidative stress with widespread mitochondrial dysfunction and abnormal mitochondrial morphology. We report that PINK1 plays a neuroprotective role in the mitochondria of mammalian neurons, especially against stress such as staurosporine. In addition we provide evidence that cellular compensatory mechanisms such as mitochondrial biogenesis and upregulation of lysosomal degradation pathways occur in PINK1 deficiency. The phenotypic effects of PINK1 loss-of-function described here in mammalian neurons provides mechanistic insight into the age-related degeneration of nigral dopaminergic neurons seen in PD.

  7. Investigating GABA and its function in platelets as compared to neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaneez, Fatima Shad; Saeed, Sheikh Arshad

    2009-08-01

    We have recently suggested that platelets could be used as a model for neuronal receptors. In this paper we have investigated gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) metabolism and GABA receptors in platelets and in cultured neurons to see whether platelets' GABA mimics neuronal GABA receptor activities. We used the ELISA technique for detecting the GABA concentration in platelet rich plasma and cultured neurons. The functional effects of GABA and its receptor ligands on platelets were determined using an aggregometer. We found that the GABA concentration is 30% lower in platelets than in neurons and in both preparations GABA was metabolized by GABA transaminase (GABA-T). GABA potentiated calcium dependent platelet aggregation with a higher value in washed platelets suspension (WPS) then in platelet rich plasma (PRP). This effect was inhibited by benzodiazepines, calcium channel blockers and the selective phosphoinositide 3-kinase antagonist Wortmannin. GABA neurotransmission is involved in most aspects of normal brain function and can be perturbed in many neuropathologic conditions. We concluded that platelets could be further developed to be used as a peripheral model to study neuronal GABAergic function and its abnormality in diseases such as epilepsy and schizophrenia. Furthermore our results indicated that PI3-kinase is involved in calcium dependent GABA induced platelet aggregation as this synergistic effect is inhibited by Wortmannin in dose dependent manner.

  8. Medial prefrontal cortex neuronal activation and synaptic alterations after stress-induced reinstatement of palatable food seeking: a study using c-fos-GFP transgenic female rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cifani, Carlo; Koya, Eisuke; Navarre, Brittany M; Calu, Donna J; Baumann, Michael H; Marchant, Nathan J; Liu, Qing-Rong; Khuc, Thi; Pickel, James; Lupica, Carl R; Shaham, Yavin; Hope, Bruce T

    2012-06-20

    Relapse to maladaptive eating habits during dieting is often provoked by stress and there is evidence for a role of ovarian hormones in stress responses and feeding. We studied the role of these hormones in stress-induced reinstatement of food seeking and medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) neuronal activation in c-fos-GFP transgenic female rats, which express GFP in strongly activated neurons. Food-restricted ovariectomized or sham-operated c-fos-GFP rats were trained to lever-press for palatable food pellets. Subsequently, lever-pressing was extinguished and reinstatement of food seeking and mPFC neuronal activation was assessed after injections of the pharmacological stressor yohimbine (0.5-2 mg/kg) or pellet priming (1-4 noncontingent pellets). Estrous cycle effects on reinstatement were also assessed in wild-type rats. Yohimbine- and pellet-priming-induced reinstatement was associated with Fos and GFP induction in mPFC; both reinstatement and neuronal activation were minimally affected by ovarian hormones in both c-fos-GFP and wild-type rats. c-fos-GFP transgenic rats were then used to assess glutamatergic synaptic alterations within activated GFP-positive and nonactivated GFP-negative mPFC neurons following yohimbine-induced reinstatement of food seeking. This reinstatement was associated with reduced AMPA receptor/NMDA receptor current ratios and increased paired-pulse facilitation in activated GFP-positive but not GFP-negative neurons. While ovarian hormones do not appear to play a role in stress-induced relapse of food seeking in our rat model, this reinstatement was associated with unique synaptic alterations in strongly activated mPFC neurons. Our paper introduces the c-fos-GFP transgenic rat as a new tool to study unique synaptic changes in activated neurons during behavior.

  9. Chronic stress alters the dendritic morphology of callosal neurons and the acute glutamate stress response in the rat medial prefrontal cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luczynski, Pauline; Moquin, Luc; Gratton, Alain

    2015-01-01

    We have previously reported that interhemispheric regulation of medial prefrontal cortex (PFC)-mediated stress responses is subserved by glutamate (GLU)- containing callosal neurons. Evidence of chronic stress-induced dendritic and spine atrophy among PFC pyramidal neurons led us to examine how chronic restraint stress (CRS) might alter the apical dendritic morphology of callosal neurons and the acute GLU stress responses in the left versus right PFC. Morphometric analyses of retrogradely labeled, dye-filled PFC callosal neurons revealed hemisphere-specific CRS-induced dendritic retraction; whereas significant dendritic atrophy occurred primarily within the distal arbor of left PFC neurons, it was observed within both the proximal and distal arbor of right PFC neurons. Overall, CRS also significantly reduced spine densities in both hemispheres with the greatest loss occurring among left PFC neurons, mostly at the distal extent of the arbor. While much of the overall decrease in dendritic spine density was accounted by the loss of thin spines, the density of mushroom-shaped spines, despite being fewer in number, was halved. Using microdialysis we found that, compared to controls, basal PFC GLU levels were significantly reduced in both hemispheres of CRS animals and that their GLU response to 30 min of tail-pinch stress was significantly prolonged in the left, but not the right PFC. Together, these findings show that a history of chronic stress alters the dendritic morphology and spine density of PFC callosal neurons and suggest a mechanism by which this might disrupt the interhemispheric regulation of PFC-mediated responses to subsequent stressors.

  10. α2-Null mutant mice have altered levels of neuronal activity in restricted midbrain and limbic brain regions during nicotine withdrawal as demonstrated by cfos expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Upton, Montana; Lotfipour, Shahrdad

    2015-10-15

    Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are the primary binding sites for nicotine within the brain. Using alpha(α)2 nAChR subunit-null mutant mice, the current study evaluates whether the absence of this gene product during mecamylamine-precipitated nicotine withdrawal eliminates neuronal activity within selective midbrain and limbic brain regions, as determined by the expression of the immediate early gene, cfos. Our results demonstrate that nicotine withdrawal enhances neuronal activity within the interpeduncular nucleus and dorsal hippocampus, which is absent in mice null for α2-containing nAChRs. In contrast, we observe that α2-null mutant mice exhibit a suppression of neuronal activity in the dentate gyrus in mice undergoing nicotine withdrawal. Interestingly, α2-null mutant mice display potentiated neuronal activity specifically within the stratum lacunosum moleculare layer of the hippocampus, independent of nicotine withdrawal. Overall, our findings demonstrate that α2-null mutant mice have altered cfos expression in distinct populations of neurons within selective midbrain and limbic brain structures that mediate baseline and nicotine withdrawal-induced neuronal activity.

  11. Nutritional Omega-3 deficiency abolishes endocannabinoid mediated neuronal functions

    OpenAIRE

    Lafourcade, Mathieu; Larrieu, Thomas; Mato, Susana; Duffaud, Anais; Sepers, Marja; Matias, Isabelle; de Smedt, Veronique; Labrousse, Virginie; Bretillon, Lionel; Matute, Carlos; Rodriguez-Puertas, Raphael; Layé, Sophie; Manzoni, Olivier Jacques

    2011-01-01

    Abstract The corollaries of the obesity epidemic that plagues developed societies are malnutrition and resulting biochemical imbalances. Low levels of essential n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 PUFAs) have been linked to neuropsychiatric diseases, but the underlying synaptic alterations are mostly unknown. We found that lifelong n-3 PUFAs dietary insufficiency specifically ablates long-term synaptic depression mediated by endocannabinoids in the prelimbic prefrontal cortex and ...

  12. Chronic zinc deficiency alters chick gut microbiota composition and function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zinc (Zn) deficiency is a prevalent micronutrient insufficiency. Although the gut is a vital organ for Zn utilization, and Zn deficiency is associated with impaired intestinal permeability and a global decrease in gastrointestinal health, alterations in the gut microbial ecology of the host under co...

  13. Virus Innexins induce alterations in insect cell and tissue function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polydnaviruses are dsDNA viruses that induce immune and developmental alterations in their caterpillar hosts. Characterization of polydnavirus gene families and family members is necessary to understand mechanisms of pathology and evolution of these viruses, and may aid to elucidate the role of host...

  14. Loss of STAT3 signaling during elevated activity causes vulnerability in hippocampal neurons

    OpenAIRE

    2012-01-01

    Chronically altered levels of network activity lead to changes in the morphology and functions of neurons. However, little is known of how changes in neuronal activity alter the intracellular signaling pathways mediating neuronal survival. Here we use primary cultures of rat hippocampal neurons to show that elevated neuronal activity impairs phosphorylation of the serine/threonine kinase, Erk1/2 and the activation of signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) by phosphorylatio...

  15. A new kind of neuron model with a tunable activation function and its applications

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    吴佑寿; 赵明生; 丁晓青

    1997-01-01

    A new neuron model with a tunable activation function, denoted by the TAF model, and its application are addressed. The activation function as well as the connection weights of the neuron model can be adjusted in the training process The two-spiral problem was used as an example to show how to deduce the adjustable activation function required, and how to construct and train the network by the use of the a priori knowledge of the problem. Due to the incorporation of constraints known a priori into the activation function, many novel aspects are revealed, such as small network size, fast learning and good performances. It is believed that the introduction of the new neuron model will pave a new way in ANN studies.

  16. Visual input controls the functional activity of goldfish Mauthner neuron through the reciprocal synaptic mechanism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moshkov, Dmitry A; Shtanchaev, Rashid S; Mikheeva, Irina B; Bezgina, Elena N; Kokanova, Nadezhda A; Mikhailova, Gulnara Z; Tiras, Nadezhda R; Pavlik, Lyubov' L

    2013-03-01

    Goldfish are known to exhibit motor asymmetry due to functional asymmetry of their Mauthner neurons that induce the turns to the right or left during free swimming. It has been previously found that if the less active neuron is subjected to prolonged aimed visual stimulation via its ventral dendrite, the motor asymmetry of goldfish is inverted, testifying that this neuron becomes functionally dominant, while the size of the ventral dendrite under these conditions is reduced 2-3 times compared to its counterpart in mirror neuron. Earlier it has been also revealed that training optokinetic stimulation induces adaptation, a substantial resistance of both fish motor asymmetry and morphofunctional state of Mauthner neurons against prolonged optokinetic stimulation. The aim of this work was to study the cellular mechanisms of the effect of an unusual visual afferent input on goldfish motor asymmetry and Mauthner neuron function in norm and under adaptation. It was shown that serotonin applied onto Mauthner neurons greatly reduces their activity whereas its antagonist ondansetron increases it. Against the background of visual stimulation, serotonin strengthens functional asymmetry between neurons whereas ondansetron smoothes it. Taken together these data suggest the involvement of serotonergic excitatory synaptic transmission in the regulation of Mauthner neurons by vision. Ultrastructural study of the ventral dendrites after prolonged optokinetic stimulation has revealed depletions of numeral axo-axonal synapses with specific morphology, identified by means of immunogold label as serotonergic ones. These latter in turn are situated mainly on shaft boutons, which according to specific ultrastructural features are assigned to axo-dendritic inhibitory synapses. Thus, the excitatory serotonergic synapses seem to affect Mauthner neuron indirectly through inhibitory synapses. Further, it was morphometrically established that adaptation is accompanied by the significant

  17. KCC2 rescues functional deficits in human neurons derived from patients with Rett syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tang, Xin; Kim, Julie; Zhou, Li; Wengert, Eric; Zhang, Lei; Wu, Zheng; Carromeu, Cassiano; Muotri, Alysson R; Marchetto, Maria C N; Gage, Fred H; Chen, Gong

    2016-01-19

    Rett syndrome is a severe form of autism spectrum disorder, mainly caused by mutations of a single gene methyl CpG binding protein 2 (MeCP2) on the X chromosome. Patients with Rett syndrome exhibit a period of normal development followed by regression of brain function and the emergence of autistic behaviors. However, the mechanism behind the delayed onset of symptoms is largely unknown. Here we demonstrate that neuron-specific K(+)-Cl(-) cotransporter2 (KCC2) is a critical downstream gene target of MeCP2. We found that human neurons differentiated from induced pluripotent stem cells from patients with Rett syndrome showed a significant deficit in KCC2 expression and consequently a delayed GABA functional switch from excitation to inhibition. Interestingly, overexpression of KCC2 in MeCP2-deficient neurons rescued GABA functional deficits, suggesting an important role of KCC2 in Rett syndrome. We further identified that RE1-silencing transcriptional factor, REST, a neuronal gene repressor, mediates the MeCP2 regulation of KCC2. Because KCC2 is a slow onset molecule with expression level reaching maximum later in development, the functional deficit of KCC2 may offer an explanation for the delayed onset of Rett symptoms. Our studies suggest that restoring KCC2 function in Rett neurons may lead to a potential treatment for Rett syndrome.

  18. Neuronal Cell Death Induced by Mechanical Percussion Trauma in Cultured Neurons is not Preceded by Alterations in Glucose, Lactate and Glutamine Metabolism

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jayakumar, A R; Bak, L K; Rama Rao, K V

    2016-01-01

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a devastating neurological disorder that usually presents in acute and chronic forms. Brain edema and associated increased intracranial pressure in the early phase following TBI are major consequences of acute trauma. On the other hand, neuronal injury, leading...... not appear to contribute to the neuronal death in the early stages following trauma....

  19. Neuron-NG2 Cell Synapses: Novel Functions for Regulating NG2 Cell Proliferation and Differentiation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qian-Kun Yang

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available NG2 cells are a population of CNS cells that are distinct from neurons, mature oligodendrocytes, astrocytes, and microglia. These cells can be identified by their NG2 proteoglycan expression. NG2 cells have a highly branched morphology, with abundant processes radiating from the cell body, and express a complex set of voltage-gated channels, AMPA/kainate, and GABA receptors. Neurons notably form classical and nonclassical synapses with NG2 cells, which have varied characteristics and functions. Neuron-NG2 cell synapses could fine-tune NG2 cell activities, including the NG2 cell cycle, differentiation, migration, and myelination, and may be a novel potential therapeutic target for NG2 cell-related diseases, such as hypoxia-ischemia injury and periventricular leukomalacia. Furthermore, neuron-NG2 cell synapses may be correlated with the plasticity of CNS in adulthood with the synaptic contacts passing onto their progenies during proliferation, and synaptic contacts decrease rapidly upon NG2 cell differentiation. In this review, we highlight the characteristics of classical and nonclassical neuron-NG2 cell synapses, the potential functions, and the fate of synaptic contacts during proliferation and differentiation, with the emphasis on the regulation of the NG2 cell cycle by neuron-NG2 cell synapses and their potential underlying mechanisms.

  20. A new era for functional labeling of neurons: activity-dependent promoters have come of age

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takashi eKawashima

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Genetic labeling of neurons with a specific response feature is an emerging technology for precise dissection of brain circuits that are functionally heterogeneous at the single-cell level. While immediate early gene mapping has been widely used for decades to identify brain regions which are activated by external stimuli, recent characterization of the promoter and enhancer elements responsible for neuronal activity-dependent transcription have opened new avenues for live imaging of active neurons. Indeed, these advancements provided the basis for a growing repertoire of novel experiments to address the role of active neuronal networks in cognitive behaviors. In this review, we summarize the current literature on the usage and development of activity-dependent promoters and discuss the future directions of this expanding new field.

  1. Structural and functional analysis of single neurons to correlate synaptic connectivity with grooming behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kays, Ibrahim; Cvetkovska, Vedrana; Chen, Brian E

    2014-01-01

    We describe a protocol to image the complex axonal branching structure of identified mechanosensory neurons in Drosophila, combined with a behavioral assay to evaluate the functional output of the neuron. The stimulation of identified mechanosensory neurons in live animals produces a stereotyped grooming reflex. The mechanosensory axonal arbor within the CNS is subsequently labeled with a lipophilic fluorescent dye and imaged by fluorescence microscopy. The behavioral output can therefore be correlated to the axonal morphology of the stimulated neuron in the same animal. Combining this protocol with genetic analysis provides a powerful tool for identifying the roles of molecules involved in different aspects of hard-wired neural circuit formation underlying an innate behavior. From behavioral analysis to axonal imaging, the protocol takes 4 d.

  2. Long-term artificial sweetener acesulfame potassium treatment alters neurometabolic functions in C57BL/6J mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wei-na Cong

    Full Text Available With the prevalence of obesity, artificial, non-nutritive sweeteners have been widely used as dietary supplements that provide sweet taste without excessive caloric load. In order to better understand the overall actions of artificial sweeteners, especially when they are chronically used, we investigated the peripheral and central nervous system effects of protracted exposure to a widely used artificial sweetener, acesulfame K (ACK. We found that extended ACK exposure (40 weeks in normal C57BL/6J mice demonstrated a moderate and limited influence on metabolic homeostasis, including altering fasting insulin and leptin levels, pancreatic islet size and lipid levels, without affecting insulin sensitivity and bodyweight. Interestingly, impaired cognitive memory functions (evaluated by Morris Water Maze and Novel Objective Preference tests were found in ACK-treated C57BL/6J mice, while no differences in motor function and anxiety levels were detected. The generation of an ACK-induced neurological phenotype was associated with metabolic dysregulation (glycolysis inhibition and functional ATP depletion and neurosynaptic abnormalities (dysregulation of TrkB-mediated BDNF and Akt/Erk-mediated cell growth/survival pathway in hippocampal neurons. Our data suggest that chronic use of ACK could affect cognitive functions, potentially via altering neuro-metabolic functions in male C57BL/6J mice.

  3. Efficient generation of functional dopaminergic neurons from human induced pluripotent stem cells under defined conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swistowski, Andrzej; Peng, Jun; Liu, Qiuyue; Mali, Prashant; Rao, Mahendra S; Cheng, Linzhao; Zeng, Xianmin

    2010-10-01

    Human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) reprogrammed from somatic cells represent a promising unlimited cell source for generating patient-specific cells for biomedical research and personalized medicine. As a first step, critical to clinical applications, we attempted to develop defined culture conditions to expand and differentiate human iPSCs into functional progeny such as dopaminergic neurons for treating or modeling Parkinson's disease (PD). We used a completely defined (xeno-free) system that we previously developed for efficient generation of authentic dopaminergic neurons from human embryonic stem cells (hESCs), and applied it to iPSCs. First, we adapted two human iPSC lines derived from different somatic cell types for the defined expansion medium and showed that the iPSCs grew similarly as hESCs in the same medium regarding pluripotency and genomic stability. Second, by using these two independent adapted iPSC lines, we showed that the process of differentiation into committed neural stem cells (NSCs) and subsequently into dopaminergic neurons was also similar to hESCs. Importantly, iPSC-derived dopaminergic neurons were functional as they survived and improved behavioral deficits in 6-hydroxydopamine-leasioned rats after transplantation. In addition, iPSC-derived NSCs and neurons could be efficiently transduced by a baculoviral vector delivering episomal DNA for future gene function study and disease modeling using iPSCs. We also performed genome-wide microarray comparisons between iPSCs and hESCs, and we derived NSC and dopaminergic neurons. Our data revealed overall similarity and visible differences at a molecular level. Efficient generation of functional dopaminergic neurons under defined conditions will facilitate research and applications using PD patient-specific iPSCs.

  4. Thermodynamic and kinetic analysis of the isolated FAD domain of rat neuronal nitric oxide synthase altered in the region of the FAD shielding residue Phe1395.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunford, Adrian J; Marshall, Ker R; Munro, Andrew W; Scrutton, Nigel S

    2004-06-01

    In rat neuronal nitric oxide synthase, Phe1395 is positioned over the FAD isoalloxazine ring. This is replaced by Trp676 in human cytochrome P450 reductase, a tryptophan in related diflavin reductases (e.g. methionine synthase reductase and novel reductase 1), and tyrosine in plant ferredoxin-NADP(+) reductase. Trp676 in human cytochrome P450 reductase is conformationally mobile, and plays a key role in enzyme reduction. Mutagenesis of Trp676 to alanine results in a functional NADH-dependent reductase. Herein, we describe studies of rat neuronal nitric oxide synthase FAD domains, in which the aromatic shielding residue Phe1395 is replaced by tryptophan, alanine and serine. In steady-state assays the F1395A and F1395S domains have a greater preference for NADH compared with F1395W and wild-type. Stopped-flow studies indicate flavin reduction by NADH is significantly faster with F1395S and F1395A domains, suggesting that this contributes to altered preference in coenzyme specificity. Unlike cytochrome P450 reductase, the switch in coenzyme specificity is not attributed to differential binding of NADPH and NADH, but probably results from improved geometry for hydride transfer in the F1395S- and F1395A-NADH complexes. Potentiometry indicates that the substitutions do not significantly perturb thermodynamic properties of the FAD, although considerable changes in electronic absorption properties are observed in oxidized F1395A and F1395S, consistent with changes in hydrophobicity of the flavin environment. In wild-type and F1395W FAD domains, prolonged incubation with NADPH results in development of the neutral blue semiquinone FAD species. This reaction is suppressed in the mutant FAD domains lacking the shielding aromatic residue.

  5. Deep brain stimulation of the subthalamic nucleus preferentially alters the translational profile of striatopallidal neurons in an animal model of Parkinson’s disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iman eKamali Sarvestani

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available Deep brain stimulation targeting the subthalamic nucleus (STN-DBS is an effective surgical treatment for the motor symptoms of Parkinson’s disease (PD, the precise neuronal mechanisms of which both at molecular and network levels remain a topic of debate. Here we employ two transgenic mouse lines, combining translating ribosomal affinity purification (TRAP with bacterial artificial chromosome expression (Bac, to selectively identify changes in translational gene expression in either Drd1a-expressing striatonigral or Drd2-expressing striatopallidal medium spiny neurons (MSNs of the striatum following STN-DBS. 6-hydroxydopamine lesioned mice received either 5 days stimulation via a DBS electrode implanted in the ipsilateral STN or 5 days sham treatment (no stimulation. Striatal polyribosomal RNA was selectively purified from either Drd2 or Drd1a MSNs using the TRAP method and gene expression profiling performed. We identified 8 significantly altered genes in Drd2 MSNs (Vps33b, Ppp1r3c, Mapk4, Sorcs2, Neto1, Abca1, Penk1 and Gapdh and 2 overlapping genes in Drd1a MSNs (Penk1 and Ppp1r3c implicated in the molecular mechanisms of STN-DBS. A detailed functional analysis, using a further 728 probes implicated in STN-DBS, suggested an increased ability to receive excitation (mediated by increased dendritic spines, increased calcium influx and enhanced excitatory post synaptic potentials accompanied by processes that would hamper the initiation of action potentials, transport of neurotransmitters from soma to axon terminals and vesicular release in Drd2-expressing MSNs. Finally, changes in expression of several genes involved in apoptosis as well as cholesterol and fatty acid metabolism were also identified. This increased understanding of the molecular mechanisms induced by STN-DBS may reveal novel targets for future non-surgical therapies for PD.

  6. The cell-autonomous role of excitatory synaptic transmission in the regulation of neuronal structure and function

    OpenAIRE

    2013-01-01

    The cell-autonomous role of synaptic transmission in the regulation of neuronal structural and electrical properties is unclear. We have now employed a genetic approach to eliminate glutamatergic synaptic transmission onto individual CA1 pyramidal neurons in a mosaic fashion in vivo. Surprisingly, while electrical properties are profoundly affected in these neurons, as well as inhibitory synaptic transmission, we found little perturbation of neuronal morphology, demonstrating a functional seg...

  7. Arrested neuronal proliferation and impaired hippocampal function following fractionated brain irradiation in the adult rat

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Madsen, Torsten Meldgaard; Kristjansen, P.E.G.; Bolwig, Tom Gert

    2003-01-01

    The generation of new neurons in the adult mammalian brain has been documented in numerous recent reports. Studies undertaken so far indicate that adult hippocampal neurogenesis is related in a number of ways to hippocampal function.Here, we report that subjecting adult rats to fractionated brain...... days after irradiation, the animals with blocked neurogenesis performed poorer than controls in a hippocampus-dependent place-recognition task, indicating that the presence of newly generated neurons may be necessary for the normal function of this brain area. The animals were never impaired...... irradiation blocked the formation of new neurons in the dentate gyrus of the hippocampus. At different time points after the termination of the irradiation procedure, the animals were tested in two tests of short-term memory that differ with respect to their dependence on hippocampal function. Eight and 21...

  8. Neuronal Correlates of Functional Coupling between Reach- and Grasp-Related Components of Muscle Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geed, Shashwati; McCurdy, Martha L.; van Kan, Peter L. E.

    2017-01-01

    Coordinated reach-to-grasp movements require precise spatiotemporal synchrony between proximal forelimb muscles (shoulder, elbow) that transport the hand toward a target during reach, and distal muscles (wrist, digit) that simultaneously preshape and orient the hand for grasp. The precise mechanisms through which the redundant neuromuscular circuitry coordinates reach with grasp, however, remain unclear. Recently, Geed and Van Kan (2016) demonstrated, using exploratory factor analysis (EFA), that limited numbers of global, template-like transport/preshape- and grasp-related muscle components underlie the complexity and variability of intramuscular electromyograms (EMGs) of up to 21 distal and proximal muscles recorded while monkeys performed reach-to-grasp tasks. Importantly, transport/preshape- and grasp-related muscle components showed invariant spatiotemporal coupling, which provides a potential mechanism for coordinating forelimb muscles during reach-to-grasp movements. In the present study, we tested whether ensemble discharges of forelimb neurons in the cerebellar nucleus interpositus (NI) and its target, the magnocellular red nucleus (RNm), a source of rubrospinal fibers, function as neuronal correlates of the transport/preshape- and grasp-related muscle components we identified. EFA applied to single-unit discharges of populations of NI and RNm neurons recorded while the same monkeys that were used previously performed the same reach-to-grasp tasks, revealed neuronal components in the ensemble discharges of both NI and RNm neuronal populations with characteristics broadly similar to muscle components. Subsets of NI and RNm neuronal components were strongly and significantly crosscorrelated with subsets of muscle components, suggesting that similar functional units of reach-to-grasp behavior are expressed by NI and RNm neuronal populations and forelimb muscles. Importantly, like transport/preshape- and grasp-related muscle components, their NI and RNm

  9. How do brain tumors alter functional connectivity? : A magnetoencephalography study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bartolomei, Fabrice; Bosma, Ingeborg; Klein, Martin; Baayen, Johannes C; Reijneveld, Jaap C; Postma, Tjeerd J; Heimans, Jan J; van Dijk, Bob W; de Munck, Jan C; de Jongh, Arent; Cover, Keith S; Stam, Cornelis J

    2006-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: This study was undertaken to test the hypothesis that brain tumors interfere with normal brain function by disrupting functional connectivity of brain networks. METHODS: Functional connectivity was assessed by computing the synchronization likelihood in a broad band (0.5-60Hz) or in the g

  10. Intrinsic brain activity in altered states of consciousness: how conscious is the default mode of brain function?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boly, M; Phillips, C; Tshibanda, L; Vanhaudenhuyse, A; Schabus, M; Dang-Vu, T T; Moonen, G; Hustinx, R; Maquet, P; Laureys, S

    2008-01-01

    Spontaneous brain activity has recently received increasing interest in the neuroimaging community. However, the value of resting-state studies to a better understanding of brain-behavior relationships has been challenged. That altered states of consciousness are a privileged way to study the relationships between spontaneous brain activity and behavior is proposed, and common resting-state brain activity features observed in various states of altered consciousness are reviewed. Early positron emission tomography studies showed that states of extremely low or high brain activity are often associated with unconsciousness. However, this relationship is not absolute, and the precise link between global brain metabolism and awareness remains yet difficult to assert. In contrast, voxel-based analyses identified a systematic impairment of associative frontoparieto-cingulate areas in altered states of consciousness, such as sleep, anesthesia, coma, vegetative state, epileptic loss of consciousness, and somnambulism. In parallel, recent functional magnetic resonance imaging studies have identified structured patterns of slow neuronal oscillations in the resting human brain. Similar coherent blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) systemwide patterns can also be found, in particular in the default-mode network, in several states of unconsciousness, such as coma, anesthesia, and slow-wave sleep. The latter results suggest that slow coherent spontaneous BOLD fluctuations cannot be exclusively a reflection of conscious mental activity, but may reflect default brain connectivity shaping brain areas of most likely interactions in a way that transcends levels of consciousness, and whose functional significance remains largely in the dark.

  11. Human Cerebral Cortex Cajal-Retzius Neuron: Development, Structure and Function. A Golgi Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miguel eMarín-Padilla

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available The development, morphology and possible functional activity of the Cajal-Retzius cell of the developing human cerebral cortex have been explored herein. The C-RC, of extracortical origin, is the essential neuron of the neocortex first lamina. It receives inputs from subcortical afferent fibers that reach the first lamina early in development. Although the origin and function of these original afferent fibers remain unknown, they target the first lamina sole neuron: the C-RC. The neuron’ orchestrates the arrival, size and stratification of all pyramidal neurons (from ependymal origin of the neocortex gray matter. Its axonic terminals spread radially and horizontally throughout the entire first lamina establishing contacts with the dendritic terminals of all gray matter pyramidal cells regardless of size, location and/or eventual functional roles. While the neuron axonic terminals spread radially and horizontally throughout the first lamina, the neuron’ bodies undergoes progressive developmental dilution and locating any of them in the adult brain become quite difficult. The neuron bodies are probably retained in the older regions of the developing neocortex while their axonic collaterals will spread throughout its more recent ones that, eventually, will represent the great majority of the brain surface. This will explain their bodies progressive dilution in the developing neocortex and, later, in the adult brain. Although quite difficult to locate the body of any of them, they have been described in the adult brain.

  12. Iron insufficiency compromises motor neurons and their mitochondrial function in Irp2-null mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suh Young Jeong

    Full Text Available Genetic ablation of Iron Regulatory Protein 2 (Irp2, Ireb2, which post-transcriptionally regulates iron metabolism genes, causes a gait disorder in mice that progresses to hind-limb paralysis. Here we have demonstrated that misregulation of iron metabolism from loss of Irp2 causes lower motor neuronal degeneration with significant spinal cord axonopathy. Mitochondria in the lumbar spinal cord showed significantly decreased Complex I and II activities, and abnormal morphology. Lower motor neurons appeared to be the most adversely affected neurons, and we show that functional iron starvation due to misregulation of iron import and storage proteins, including transferrin receptor 1 and ferritin, may have a causal role in disease. We demonstrated that two therapeutic approaches were beneficial for motor neuron survival. First, we activated a homologous protein, IRP1, by oral Tempol treatment and found that axons were partially spared from degeneration. Secondly, we genetically decreased expression of the iron storage protein, ferritin, to diminish functional iron starvation. These data suggest that functional iron deficiency may constitute a previously unrecognized molecular basis for degeneration of motor neurons in mice.

  13. "The developmental and functional logic of neuronal circuits": commentary on the Kavli Prize in Neuroscience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glover, J C

    2009-11-10

    The first Kavli Prize in Neuroscience recognizes a confluence of career achievements that together provide a fundamental understanding of how brain and spinal cord circuits are assembled during development and function in the adult. The members of the Kavli Neuroscience Prize Committee have decided to reward three scientists (Sten Grillner, Thomas Jessell, and Pasko Rakic) jointly "for discoveries on the developmental and functional logic of neuronal circuits". Pasko Rakic performed groundbreaking studies of the developing cerebral cortex, including the discovery of how radial glia guide the neuronal migration that establishes cortical layers and for the radial unit hypothesis and its implications for cortical connectivity and evolution. Thomas Jessell discovered molecular principles governing the specification and patterning of different neuron types and the development of their synaptic interconnection into sensorimotor circuits. Sten Grillner elucidated principles of network organization in the vertebrate locomotor central pattern generator, along with its command systems and sensory and higher order control. The discoveries of Rakic, Jessell and Grillner provide a framework for how neurons obtain their identities and ultimate locations, establish appropriate connections with each other, and how the resultant neuronal networks operate. Their work has significantly advanced our understanding of brain development and function and created new opportunities for the treatment of neurological disorders. Each has pioneered an important area of neuroscience research and left a legacy of exceptional scientific achievement, insight, communication, mentoring and leadership.

  14. Iron insufficiency compromises motor neurons and their mitochondrial function in Irp2-null mice

    KAUST Repository

    Jeong, Suh Young

    2011-10-07

    Genetic ablation of Iron Regulatory Protein 2 (Irp2, Ireb2), which post-transcriptionally regulates iron metabolism genes, causes a gait disorder in mice that progresses to hind-limb paralysis. Here we have demonstrated that misregulation of iron metabolism from loss of Irp2 causes lower motor neuronal degeneration with significant spinal cord axonopathy. Mitochondria in the lumbar spinal cord showed significantly decreased Complex I and II activities, and abnormal morphology. Lower motor neurons appeared to be the most adversely affected neurons, and we show that functional iron starvation due to misregulation of iron import and storage proteins, including transferrin receptor 1 and ferritin, may have a causal role in disease. We demonstrated that two therapeutic approaches were beneficial for motor neuron survival. First, we activated a homologous protein, IRP1, by oral Tempol treatment and found that axons were partially spared from degeneration. Secondly, we genetically decreased expression of the iron storage protein, ferritin, to diminish functional iron starvation. These data suggest that functional iron deficiency may constitute a previously unrecognized molecular basis for degeneration of motor neurons in mice.

  15. Human cerebral cortex Cajal-Retzius neuron: development, structure and function. A Golgi study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marín-Padilla, Miguel

    2015-01-01

    The development, morphology and possible functional activity of the Cajal-Retzius cell of the developing human cerebral cortex are explored herein. The C-RC, of extracortical origin, is the essential neuron of the neocortex first lamina. It receives inputs from afferent fibers that reach the first lamina early in development. Although the origin and function of these original afferent fibers remain unknown, their target is the first lamina sole neuron: the C-RC. This neuron orchestrates the arrival, size and stratification of all pyramidal neurons (of ependymal origin) of the neocortex gray matter. Its axonic terminals spread radially and horizontally throughout the entirety of the first lamina establishing contacts with the dendritic terminals of all gray matter pyramidal cells regardless of size, location and/or eventual functional roles. While the neuron axonic terminals spread radially and horizontally throughout the first lamina, the neuronal' body undergoes progressive developmental dilution and locating any of them in the adult brain become quite difficult. The neuron bodies are probably retained in the older regions of the neocortex while their axonic collaterals will spread throughout its more recent ones and eventually will extend to great majority of the cortical surface. The neocortex first lamina evolution and composition and that of the C-RC are intertwined and mutually interdependent. It is not possible to understand the C-RC evolving morphology without understanding that of the first lamina. The first lamina composition and its structural and functional organizations obtained with different staining methods may be utterly different. These differences have added unnecessary confusion about its nature. The essential emptiness observed in hematoxylin and eosin preparations (most commonly used) contrast sharply with the concentration of dendrites (the cortex' largest) obtained using special (MAP-2) stain for dendrites. Only Golgi preparations

  16. Functional alterations in neural substrates of geometric reasoning in adults with high-functioning autism.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takashi Yamada

    Full Text Available Individuals with autism spectrum condition (ASC are known to excel in some perceptual cognitive tasks, but such developed functions have been often regarded as "islets of abilities" that do not significantly contribute to broader intellectual capacities. However, recent behavioral studies have reported that individuals with ASC have advantages for performing Raven's (Standard Progressive Matrices (RPM/RSPM, a standard neuropsychological test for general fluid intelligence, raising the possibility that ASC's cognitive strength can be utilized for more general purposes like novel problem solving. Here, the brain activity of 25 adults with high-functioning ASC and 26 matched normal controls (NC was measured using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI to examine neural substrates of geometric reasoning during the engagement of a modified version of the RSPM test. Among the frontal and parietal brain regions involved in fluid intelligence, ASC showed larger activation in the left lateral occipitotemporal cortex (LOTC during an analytic condition with moderate difficulty than NC. Activation in the left LOTC and ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC increased with task difficulty in NC, whereas such modulation of activity was absent in ASC. Furthermore, functional connectivity analysis revealed a significant reduction of activation coupling between the left inferior parietal cortex and the right anterior prefrontal cortex during both figural and analytic conditions in ASC. These results indicate altered pattern of functional specialization and integration in the neural system for geometric reasoning in ASC, which may explain its atypical cognitive pattern, including performance on the Raven's Matrices test.

  17. Evidence for NG2-glia derived, adult-born functional neurons in the hypothalamus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah C Robins

    Full Text Available Accumulating evidence suggests that the adult murine hypothalamus, a control site of several fundamental homeostatic processes, has neurogenic capacity. Correspondingly, the adult hypothalamus exhibits considerable cell proliferation that is ongoing even in the absence of external stimuli, and some of the newborn cells have been shown to mature into cells that express neuronal fate markers. However, the identity and characteristics of proliferating cells within the hypothalamic parenchyma have yet to be thoroughly investigated. Here we show that a subset of NG2-glia distributed throughout the mediobasal hypothalamus are proliferative and express the stem cell marker Sox2. We tracked the constitutive differentiation of hypothalamic NG2-glia by employing genetic fate mapping based on inducible Cre recombinase expression under the control of the NG2 promoter, demonstrating that adult hypothalamic NG2-glia give rise to substantial numbers of APC+ oligodendrocytes and a smaller population of HuC/D+ or NeuN+ neurons. Labelling with the cell proliferation marker BrdU confirmed that some NG2-derived neurons have proliferated shortly before differentiation. Furthermore, patch-clamp electrophysiology revealed that some NG2-derived cells display an immature neuronal phenotype and appear to receive synaptic input indicative of their electrical integration in local hypothalamic circuits. Together, our studies show that hypothalamic NG2-glia are able to take on neuronal fates and mature into functional neurons, indicating that NG2-glia contribute to the neurogenic capacity of the adult hypothalamus.

  18. Functional P2X7 receptors at cultured hippocampal astrocytes but not neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rubini, Patrizia; Pagel, Gregor; Mehri, Soghra; Marquardt, Peter; Riedel, Thomas; Illes, Peter

    2014-10-01

    P2X7 receptors have been suggested to be located both on neurons and astrocytes of the central and peripheral nervous systems. In the present Ca(2+)-imaging and patch-clamp study, we reinvestigated these findings on mixed neuronal-astrocytic cell cultures prepared from embryonic or newborn rat hippocampi. We found in a Mg(2+)-free bath medium that the prototypic P2X7 receptor agonist dibenzoyl-adenosine triphosphate (Bz-ATP) increased the intracellular Ca(2+) concentration ([Ca(2+)]i) both in the neuronal cell bodies and in their axo-dendritic processes only to a very minor extent. However, Bz-ATP produced marked [Ca(2+)]i transients in the neuronal processes, when they grew above a glial carpet, which was uniformly sensitive to Bz-ATP. These glial signals might be misinterpreted as neuronal responses because of the poor focal discrimination by a fluorescent microscope. Most astrocytes had a polygonal shape without clearly circumscribable boundaries, but a subgroup of them had neuron-like appearance. The cellular processes of this astrocytic subgroup, just as their cell somata and their polygonal counterparts, appeared to possess a high density of functional P2X7 receptors. In contrast to astrocytes, in a low Ca(2+)/no Mg(2+)-containing bath medium, hippocampal neurons failed to respond to Bz-ATP with membrane currents. In addition, neither the amplitude nor the frequency of spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic currents, representing the quantal release of glutamate, was modified by Bz-ATP. We conclude that cultured hippocampal neurons, in contrast to astrocytes, possess P2X7 receptors, if at all, only at a low density.

  19. Neurons Differentiated from Transplanted Stem Cells Respond Functionally to Acoustic Stimuli in the Awake Monkey Brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Jing-Kuan; Wang, Wen-Chao; Zhai, Rong-Wei; Zhang, Yu-Hua; Yang, Shang-Chuan; Rizak, Joshua; Li, Ling; Xu, Li-Qi; Liu, Li; Pan, Ming-Ke; Hu, Ying-Zhou; Ghanemi, Abdelaziz; Wu, Jing; Yang, Li-Chuan; Li, Hao; Lv, Long-Bao; Li, Jia-Li; Yao, Yong-Gang; Xu, Lin; Feng, Xiao-Li; Yin, Yong; Qin, Dong-Dong; Hu, Xin-Tian; Wang, Zheng-Bo

    2016-07-26

    Here, we examine whether neurons differentiated from transplanted stem cells can integrate into the host neural network and function in awake animals, a goal of transplanted stem cell therapy in the brain. We have developed a technique in which a small "hole" is created in the inferior colliculus (IC) of rhesus monkeys, then stem cells are transplanted in situ to allow for investigation of their integration into the auditory neural network. We found that some transplanted cells differentiated into mature neurons and formed synaptic input/output connections with the host neurons. In addition, c-Fos expression increased significantly in the cells after acoustic stimulation, and multichannel recordings indicated IC specific tuning activities in response to auditory stimulation. These results suggest that the transplanted cells have the potential to functionally integrate into the host neural network.

  20. Assigning Function to Adult-Born Neurons: A Theoretical Framework for Characterizing Neural Manipulation of Learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah eHersman

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Neuroscientists are concerned with neural processes or computations, but these may not be directly observable. In the field of learning, a behavioral procedure is observed to lead to performance outcomes, but differing inferences on underlying internal processes can lead to difficulties in interpreting conflicting results. An example of this challenge is how many functions have been attributed to adult-born granule cells in the dentate gyrus. Some of these functions were suggested by computational models of the properties of these neurons, while others were hypothesized after manipulations of adult-born neurons resulted in changes to behavioral metrics. This review seeks to provide a framework, based in learning theory classification of behavioral procedures, of the processes that may be underlying behavioral results after manipulating procedure and observing performance. We propose that this framework can serve to clarify experimental findings on adult-born neurons as well as other classes of neural manipulations and their effects on behavior.

  1. Special function of nestin+neurons in the medial septum-diagonal band of Broca in adult rats

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Yuhong Zhao; Kaihua Guo; Dongpei Li; Qunfang Yuan; Zhibin Yao

    2014-01-01

    Nestin+neurons have been shown to express choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) in the medial septum-diagonal band of Broca in adult rats. This study explored the projection of nestin+neu-rons to the olfactory bulb and the time course of nestin+neurons in the medial septum-diagonal band of Broca in adult rats during injury recovery after olfactory nerve transection. This study observed that all nestin+neurons were double-labeled with ChAT in the medial septum-diagonal band of Broca. Approximately 53.6%of nestin+neurons were projected to the olfactory bulb and co-labeled with fast blue. A large number of nestin+neurons were not present in each region of the medial septum-diagonal band of Broca. Nestin+neurons in the medial septum and vertical limb of the diagonal band of Broca showed obvious compensatory function. The number of nestin+neurons decreased to a minimum later than nestin-/ChAT+neurons in the medial sep-tum-diagonal band of Broca. The results suggest that nestin+cholinergic neurons may have a closer connection to olfactory bulb neurons. Nestin+cholinergic neurons may have a stronger tolerance to injury than Nestin-/ChAT+neurons. The difference between nestin+and nestin-/ChAT+neurons during the recovery process requires further investigations.

  2. Neuronal substrates and functional consequences of prenatal cannabis exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calvigioni, Daniela; Hurd, Yasmin L; Harkany, Tibor; Keimpema, Erik

    2014-10-01

    Cannabis remains one of the world's most widely used substance of abuse amongst pregnant women. Trends of the last 50 years show an increase in popularity in child-bearing women together with a constant increase in cannabis potency. In addition, potent herbal "legal" highs containing synthetic cannabinoids that mimic the effects of cannabis with unknown pharmacological and toxicological effects have gained rapid popularity amongst young adults. Despite the surge in cannabis use during pregnancy, little is known about the neurobiological and psychological consequences in the exposed offspring. In this review, we emphasize the importance of maternal programming, defined as the intrauterine presentation of maternal stimuli to the foetus, in neurodevelopment. In particular, we focus on cannabis-mediated maternal adverse effects, resulting in direct central nervous system alteration or sensitization to late-onset chronic and neuropsychiatric disorders. We compare clinical and preclinical experimental studies on the effects of foetal cannabis exposure until early adulthood, to stress the importance of animal models that permit the fine control of environmental variables and allow the dissection of cannabis-mediated molecular cascades in the developing central nervous system. In sum, we conclude that preclinical experimental models confirm clinical studies and that cannabis exposure evokes significant molecular modifications to neurodevelopmental programs leading to neurophysiological and behavioural abnormalities.

  3. Altered islet morphology but normal islet secretory function in vitro in a mouse model with microvascular alterations in the pancreas.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elena Kostromina

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Our previous studies have shown that signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3 signaling is important for the development of pancreatic microvasculature via its regulation of vascular endothelial growth factor-A (VEGF-A. Pancreas-specific STAT3-KO mice exhibit glucose intolerance and impaired insulin secretion in vivo, along with microvascular alterations in the pancreas. However, the specific role of STAT3 signaling in the regulation of pancreatic islet development and function is not entirely understood. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: To investigate the role of STAT3 signaling in the formation and maintenance of pancreatic islets, we studied pancreas-specific STAT3-KO mice. Histological analysis showed that STAT3 deficiency affected pancreatic islet morphology. We found an increased proportion of small-sized islets and a reduced fraction of medium-sized islets, indicating abnormal islet development in STAT3-KO mice. Interestingly, the islet area relative to the whole pancreas area in transgenic and control mice was not significantly different. Immunohistochemical analysis on pancreatic cryosections revealed abnormalities in islet architecture in STAT3-KO mice: the pattern of peripheral distribution of glucagon-positive α-cells was altered. At the same time, islets belonging to different size categories isolated from STAT3-KO mice exhibited normal glucose-stimulated insulin secretion in perifusion experiments in vitro when compared to control mice. CONCLUSIONS: Our data demonstrate that STAT3 signaling in the pancreas is required for normal islet formation and/or maintenance. Altered islet size distribution in the KO mice does not result in an impaired islet secretory function in vitro. Therefore, our current study supports that the glucose intolerance and in vivo insulin secretion defect in pancreas-specific STAT3-KO mice is due to altered microvasculature in the pancreas, and not intrinsic beta-cell function.

  4. Prenatal inflammation-induced hypoferremia alters dopamine function in the adult offspring in rat: relevance for schizophrenia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Argel Aguilar-Valles

    Full Text Available Maternal infection during pregnancy has been associated with increased incidence of schizophrenia in the adult offspring. Mechanistically, this has been partially attributed to neurodevelopmental disruption of the dopamine neurons, as a consequence of exacerbated maternal immunity. In the present study we sought to target hypoferremia, a cytokine-induced reduction of serum non-heme iron, which is common to all types of infections. Adequate iron supply to the fetus is fundamental for the development of the mesencephalic dopamine neurons and disruption of this following maternal infection can affect the offspring's dopamine function. Using a rat model of localized injury induced by turpentine, which triggers the innate immune response and inflammation, we investigated the effects of maternal iron supplementation on the offspring's dopamine function by assessing behavioral responses to acute and repeated administration of the dopamine indirect agonist, amphetamine. In addition we measured protein levels of tyrosine hydroxylase, and tissue levels of dopamine and its metabolites, in ventral tegmental area, susbtantia nigra, nucleus accumbens, dorsal striatum and medial prefrontal cortex. Offspring of turpentine-treated mothers exhibited greater responses to a single amphetamine injection and enhanced behavioral sensitization following repeated exposure to this drug, when compared to control offspring. These behavioral changes were accompanied by increased baseline levels of tyrosine hydroxylase, dopamine and its metabolites, selectively in the nucleus accumbens. Both, the behavioral and neurochemical changes were prevented by maternal iron supplementation. Localized prenatal inflammation induced a deregulation in iron homeostasis, which resulted in fundamental alterations in dopamine function and behavioral alterations in the adult offspring. These changes are characteristic of schizophrenia symptoms in humans.

  5. Specific involvement of gonadal hormones in the functional maturation of growth hormone releasing hormone (GHRH) neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gouty-Colomer, Laurie-Anne; Méry, Pierre-François; Storme, Emilie; Gavois, Elodie; Robinson, Iain C; Guérineau, Nathalie C; Mollard, Patrice; Desarménien, Michel G

    2010-12-01

    Growth hormone (GH) is the key hormone involved in the regulation of growth and metabolism, two functions that are highly modulated during infancy. GH secretion, controlled mainly by GH releasing hormone (GHRH), has a characteristic pattern during postnatal development that results in peaks of blood concentration at birth and puberty. A detailed knowledge of the electrophysiology of the GHRH neurons is necessary to understand the mechanisms regulating postnatal GH secretion. Here, we describe the unique postnatal development of the electrophysiological properties of GHRH neurons and their regulation by gonadal hormones. Using GHRH-eGFP mice, we demonstrate that already at birth, GHRH neurons receive numerous synaptic inputs and fire large and fast action potentials (APs), consistent with effective GH secretion. Concomitant with the GH secretion peak occurring at puberty, these neurons display modifications of synaptic input properties, decrease in AP duration, and increase in a transient voltage-dependant potassium current. Furthermore, the modulation of both the AP duration and voltage-dependent potassium current are specifically controlled by gonadal hormones because gonadectomy prevented the maturation of these active properties and hormonal treatment restored it. Thus, GHRH neurons undergo specific developmental modulations of their electrical properties over the first six postnatal weeks, in accordance with hormonal demand. Our results highlight the importance of the interaction between the somatotrope and gonadotrope axes during the establishment of adapted neuroendocrine functions.

  6. Functional Properties of Human Stem Cell-Derived Neurons in Health and Disease

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    Jason P. Weick

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Stem cell-derived neurons from various source materials present unique model systems to examine the fundamental properties of central nervous system (CNS development as well as the molecular underpinnings of disease phenotypes. In order to more accurately assess potential therapies for neurological disorders, multiple strategies have been employed in recent years to produce neuronal populations that accurately represent in vivo regional and transmitter phenotypes. These include new technologies such as direct conversion of somatic cell types into neurons and glia which may accelerate maturation and retain genetic hallmarks of aging. In addition, novel forms of genetic manipulations have brought human stem cells nearly on par with those of rodent with respect to gene targeting. For neurons of the CNS, the ultimate phenotypic characterization lies with their ability to recapitulate functional properties such as passive and active membrane characteristics, synaptic activity, and plasticity. These features critically depend on the coordinated expression and localization of hundreds of ion channels and receptors, as well as scaffolding and signaling molecules. In this review I will highlight the current state of knowledge regarding functional properties of human stem cell-derived neurons, with a primary focus on pluripotent stem cells. While significant advances have been made, critical hurdles must be overcome in order for this technology to support progression toward clinical applications.

  7. Uncoupling Neogenin association with lipid rafts promotes neuronal survival and functional recovery after stroke.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shabanzadeh, A P; Tassew, N G; Szydlowska, K; Tymianski, M; Banerjee, P; Vigouroux, R J; Eubanks, J H; Huang, L; Geraerts, M; Koeberle, P D; Mueller, B K; Monnier, P P

    2015-05-07

    The dependence receptor Neogenin and its ligand, the repulsive guidance molecule a (RGMa), regulate apoptosis and axonal growth in the developing and the adult central nervous system (CNS). Here, we show that this pathway has also a critical role in neuronal death following stroke, and that providing RGMa to neurons blocks Neogenin-induced death. Interestingly, the Neogenin pro-death function following ischemic insult depends on Neogenin association with lipid rafts. Thus, a peptide that prevents Neogenin association with lipid rafts increased neuronal survival in several in vitro stroke models. In rats, a pro-survival effect was also observed in a model of ocular ischemia, as well as after middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO). Treatments that prevented Neogenin association with lipid rafts improved neuronal survival and the complexity of the neuronal network following occlusion of the middle artery. Toward the development of a treatment for stroke, we developed a human anti-RGMa antibody that also prevents Neogenin association with lipid rafts. We show that this antibody also protected CNS tissue from ischemic damage and that its application resulted in a significant functional improvement even when administrated 6 h after artery occlusion. Thus, our results draw attention to the role of Neogenin and lipid rafts as potential targets following stroke.

  8. Functional adaptation to loading of a single bone is neuronally regulated and involves multiple bones.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sample, Susannah J; Behan, Mary; Smith, Lesley; Oldenhoff, William E; Markel, Mark D; Kalscheur, Vicki L; Hao, Zhengling; Miletic, Vjekoslav; Muir, Peter

    2008-09-01

    Regulation of load-induced bone formation is considered a local phenomenon controlled by osteocytes, although it has also been hypothesized that functional adaptation may be neuronally regulated. The aim of this study was to examine bone formation in multiple bones, in response to loading of a single bone, and to determine whether adaptation may be neuronally regulated. Load-induced responses in the left and right ulnas and humeri were determined after loading of the right ulna in male Sprague-Dawley rats (69 +/- 16 days of age). After a single period of loading at -760-, -2000-, or -3750-microepsilon initial peak strain, rats were given calcein to label new bone formation. Bone formation and bone neuropeptide concentrations were determined at 10 days. In one group, temporary neuronal blocking was achieved by perineural anesthesia of the brachial plexus with bupivicaine during loading. We found right ulna loading induces adaptive responses in other bones in both thoracic limbs compared with Sham controls and that neuronal blocking during loading abrogated bone formation in the loaded ulna and other thoracic limb bones. Skeletal adaptation was more evident in distal long bones compared with proximal long bones. We also found that the single period of loading modulated bone neuropeptide concentrations persistently for 10 days. We conclude that functional adaptation to loading of a single bone in young rapidly growing rats is neuronally regulated and involves multiple bones. Persistent changes in bone neuropeptide concentrations after a single loading period suggest that plasticity exists in the innervation of bone.

  9. Prenatal stress alters amygdala functional connectivity in preterm neonates

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    Dustin Scheinost

    2016-01-01

    Functional connectivity from the amygdala to other subcortical regions is decreased in preterm neonates compared to term controls. In addition, these data, for the first time, suggest that prenatal stress exposure amplifies these decreases.

  10. Gene expression pattern of functional neuronal cells derived from human bone marrow mesenchymal stromal cells

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    Bron Dominique

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Neuronal tissue has limited potential to self-renew or repair after neurological diseases. Cellular therapies using stem cells are promising approaches for the treatment of neurological diseases. However, the clinical use of embryonic stem cells or foetal tissues is limited by ethical considerations and other scientific problems. Thus, bone marrow mesenchymal stomal cells (BM-MSC could represent an alternative source of stem cells for cell replacement therapies. Indeed, many studies have demonstrated that MSC can give rise to neuronal cells as well as many tissue-specific cell phenotypes. Methods BM-MSC were differentiated in neuron-like cells under specific induction (NPBM + cAMP + IBMX + NGF + Insulin. By day ten, differentiated cells presented an expression profile of real neurons. Functionality of these differentiated cells was evaluated by calcium influx through glutamate receptor AMPA3. Results Using microarray analysis, we compared gene expression profile of these different samples, before and after neurogenic differentiation. Among the 1943 genes differentially expressed, genes down-regulated are involved in osteogenesis, chondrogenesis, adipogenesis, myogenesis and extracellular matrix component (tuftelin, AGC1, FADS3, tropomyosin, fibronectin, ECM2, HAPLN1, vimentin. Interestingly, genes implicated in neurogenesis are increased. Most of them are involved in the synaptic transmission and long term potentialisation as cortactin, CASK, SYNCRIP, SYNTL4 and STX1. Other genes are involved in neurite outgrowth, early neuronal cell development, neuropeptide signaling/synthesis and neuronal receptor (FK506, ARHGAP6, CDKRAP2, PMCH, GFPT2, GRIA3, MCT6, BDNF, PENK, amphiregulin, neurofilament 3, Epha4, synaptotagmin. Using real time RT-PCR, we confirmed the expression of selected neuronal genes: NEGR1, GRIA3 (AMPA3, NEF3, PENK and Epha4. Functionality of these neuron-like cells was demonstrated by Ca2+ influx through glutamate

  11. Impact of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS on neuronal functions

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    Suman Das

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS, a noninvasive brain stimulation technique, modulates neuronal excitability by the application of a small electrical current. The low cost and ease of the technique has driven interest in potential clinical applications. However, outcomes are highly sensitive to stimulation parameters, leading to difficulty maximizing the technique’s effectiveness. Although reversing the polarity of stimulation often causes opposite effects, this is not always the case. Effective clinical application will require an understanding of how tDCS works; how it modulates a neuron; how it affects the local network; and how it alters inter-network signaling. We have summarized what is known regarding the mechanisms of tDCS from sub-cellular processing to circuit level communication with a particular focus on what can be learned from the polarity specificity of the effects.

  12. Functional Characterization of the Octenol Receptor Neuron on the Maxillary Palps of the Yellow Fever Mosquito, Aedes aegypti

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-06-30

    Functional Characterization of the Octenol Receptor Neuron on the Maxillary Palps of the Yellow Fever Mosquito, Aedes aegypti Alan J. Grant, Joseph C...Dickens JC (2011) Functional Characterization of the Octenol Receptor Neuron on the Maxillary Palps of the Yellow Fever Mosquito, Aedes aegypti . PLoS...palps. Both sexes of mosquitoes possess basiconic sensilla that contain three neurons; in Aedes aegypti these sensilla number about 35 in females and 21

  13. Polyethyleneimine functionalized single-walled carbon nanotubes as a substrate for neuronal growth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Hui; Ni, Yingchun; Mandal, Swadhin K; Montana, Vedrana; Zhao, Bin; Haddon, Robert C; Parpura, Vladimir

    2005-03-17

    We report the synthesis of a single-walled carbon nanotube (SWNT) graft copolymer. This polymer was prepared by the functionalization of SWNTs with polyethyleneimine (PEI). We used this graft copolymer, SWNT-PEI, as a substrate for cultured neurons and found that it promotes neurite outgrowth and branching.

  14. Glutamate mediates the function of melanocortin receptor 4 on sim1 neurons in body weight regulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    The melanocortin receptor 4 (MC4R) is a well-established mediator of body weight homeostasis. However, the neurotransmitter(s) that mediate MC4R function remain largely unknown; as a result, little is known about the second-order neurons of the MC4R neural pathway. Single-minded 1 (Sim1)-expressing ...

  15. Restricted cortical and amygdaloid removal of vesicular glutamate transporter 2 in preadolescent mice impacts dopaminergic activity and neuronal circuitry of higher brain function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wallén-Mackenzie, Asa; Nordenankar, Karin; Fejgin, Kim; Lagerström, Malin C; Emilsson, Lina; Fredriksson, Robert; Wass, Caroline; Andersson, Daniel; Egecioglu, Emil; Andersson, My; Strandberg, Joakim; Lindhe, Orjan; Schiöth, Helgi B; Chergui, Karima; Hanse, Eric; Långström, Bengt; Fredriksson, Anders; Svensson, Lennart; Roman, Erika; Kullander, Klas

    2009-02-18

    A major challenge in neuroscience is to resolve the connection between gene functionality, neuronal circuits, and behavior. Most, if not all, neuronal circuits of the adult brain contain a glutamatergic component, the nature of which has been difficult to assess because of the vast cellular abundance of glutamate. In this study, we wanted to determine the role of a restricted subpopulation of glutamatergic neurons within the forebrain, the Vglut2-expressing neurons, in neuronal circuitry of higher brain function. Vglut2 expression was selectively deleted in the cortex, hippocampus, and amygdala of preadolescent mice, which resulted in increased locomotor activity, altered social dominance and risk assessment, decreased sensorimotor gating, and impaired long-term spatial memory. Presynaptic VGLUT2-positive terminals were lost in the cortex, striatum, nucleus accumbens, and hippocampus, and a downstream effect on dopamine binding site availability in the striatum was evident. A connection between the induced late-onset, chronic reduction of glutamatergic neurotransmission and dopamine signaling within the circuitry was further substantiated by a partial attenuation of the deficits in sensorimotor gating by the dopamine-stabilizing antipsychotic drug aripiprazole and an increased sensitivity to amphetamine. Somewhat surprisingly, given the restricted expression of Vglut2 in regions responsible for higher brain function, our analyses show that VGLUT2-mediated neurotransmission is required for certain aspects of cognitive, emotional, and social behavior. The present study provides support for the existence of a neurocircuitry that connects changes in VGLUT2-mediated neurotransmission to alterations in the dopaminergic system with schizophrenia-like behavioral deficits as a major outcome.

  16. Kaempferol inhibits Entamoeba histolytica growth by altering cytoskeletal functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bolaños, Verónica; Díaz-Martínez, Alfredo; Soto, Jacqueline; Marchat, Laurence A; Sanchez-Monroy, Virginia; Ramírez-Moreno, Esther

    2015-11-01

    The flavonoid kaempferol obtained from Helianthemum glomeratum, an endemic Mexican medicinal herb used to treat gastrointestinal disorders, has been shown to inhibit growth of Entamoeba histolytica trophozoites in vitro; however, the mechanisms associated with this activity have not been documented. Several works reported that kaempferol affects cytoskeleton in mammalian cells. In order to gain insights into the action mechanisms involved in the anti-amoebic effect of kaempferol, here we evaluated the effect of this compound on the pathogenic events driven by the cytoskeleton during E. histolytica infection. We also carried out a two dimensional gel-based proteomic analysis to evidence modulated proteins that could explain the phenotypical changes observed in trophozoites. Our results showed that kaempferol produces a dose-dependent effect on trophozoites growth and viability with optimal concentration being 27.7 μM. Kaempferol also decreased adhesion, it increased migration and phagocytic activity, but it did not affect erythrocyte binding nor cytolytic capacity of E. histolytica. Congruently, proteomic analysis revealed that the cytoskeleton proteins actin, myosin II heavy chain and cortexillin II were up-regulated in response to kaempferol treatment. In conclusion, kaempferol anti-amoebic effects were associated with deregulation of proteins related with cytoskeleton, which altered invasion mechanisms.

  17. Imaging brain neuronal activity using functionalized magnetonanoparticles and MRI.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akhtari, Massoud; Bragin, Anatol; Moats, Rex; Frew, Andrew; Mandelkern, Mark

    2012-10-01

    This study explored the use of non-radioactive 2-deoxy glucose (2DG)-labeled magnetonanoparticles (MNP) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to detect functional activity during rest, peripheral stimulation, and epileptic seizures, in animal models. Non-radioactive 2DG was covalently attached to magnetonanoparticles composed of iron oxide and dextran and intravenous (tail) injections were performed. 2DG-MNP was injected in resting and stimulated naïve rodents and the subsequent MRI was compared to published (14)C-2DG autoradiography data. Reproducibility and statistical significance was established in one studied model. Negative contrast enhancement (NCE) in acute seizures and chronic models of epilepsy were investigated. MRI NCE due to 2DG-MNP particles was compared to that of plain (unconjugated) MNP in one animal. NCE due to 2DG-MNP particles at 3 T, which is approved for human use, was also investigated. Histology showed presence of MNP (following intravenous injection) in the brain tissues of resting naïve animal. 2DG-MNP intraparenchymal uptake was visible on MRI and histology. The locations of NCE agreed with published results of 2DG autoradiography in resting and stimulated animals and epileptic rats. Localization of epileptogenicity was confirmed by subsequent depth-electrode EEG (iEEG). Non-radioactive 2DG-MNP can cross the blood-brain barrier (BBB) and may accurately localize areas of increased activity. Although, this proof-of-principle study involves only a limited number of animals, and much more research and quantification are necessary to demonstrate that 2DG-MNP, or MNPs conjugated with other ligands, could eventually be used to image localized cerebral function with MRI in humans, this MNP-MRI approach is potentially applicable to the use of many bioactive molecules as ligands for imaging normal and abnormal localized cerebral functions.

  18. Alterations in perivascular sympathetic and nitrergic innervation function induced by late pregnancy in rat mesenteric arteries.

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    Esther Sastre

    Full Text Available We investigated whether pregnancy was associated with changed function in components of perivascular mesenteric innervation and the mechanism/s involved.We used superior mesenteric arteries from female Sprague-Dawley rats divided into two groups: control rats (in oestrous phase and pregnant rats (20 days of pregnancy. Modifications in the vasoconstrictor response to electrical field stimulation (EFS were analysed in the presence/absence of phentolamine (alpha-adrenoceptor antagonist or L-NAME (nitric oxide synthase-NOS- non-specific inhibitor. Vasomotor responses to noradrenaline (NA, and to NO donor DEA-NO were studied, NA and NO release measured and neuronal NOS (nNOS expression/activation analysed.EFS induced a lower frequency-dependent contraction in pregnant than in control rats. Phentolamine decreased EFS-induced vasoconstriction in segments from both experimental groups, but to a greater extent in control rats. EFS-induced vasoconstriction was increased by L-NAME in arteries from both experimental groups. This increase was greater in segments from pregnant rats. Pregnancy decreased NA release while increasing NO release. nNOS expression was not modified but nNOS activation was increased by pregnancy. Pregnancy decreased NA-induced vasoconstriction response and did not modify DEA-NO-induced vasodilation response.Neural control of mesenteric vasomotor tone was altered by pregnancy. Diminished sympathetic and enhanced nitrergic components both contributed to the decreased vasoconstriction response to EFS during pregnancy. All these changes indicate the selective participation of sympathetic and nitrergic innervations in vascular adaptations produced during pregnancy.

  19. Role of Striatal-Enriched Tyrosine Phosphatase in Neuronal Function

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    Marija Kamceva

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Striatal-enriched protein tyrosine phosphatase (STEP is a CNS-enriched protein implicated in multiple neurologic and neuropsychiatric disorders. STEP regulates key signaling proteins required for synaptic strengthening as well as NMDA and AMPA receptor trafficking. Both high and low levels of STEP disrupt synaptic function and contribute to learning and behavioral deficits. High levels of STEP are present in human postmortem samples and animal models of Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and schizophrenia and in animal models of fragile X syndrome. Low levels of STEP activity are present in additional disorders that include ischemia, Huntington’s chorea, alcohol abuse, and stress disorders. Thus the current model of STEP is that optimal levels are required for optimal synaptic function. Here we focus on the role of STEP in Alzheimer’s disease and the mechanisms by which STEP activity is increased in this illness. Both genetic lowering of STEP levels and pharmacological inhibition of STEP activity in mouse models of Alzheimer’s disease reverse the biochemical and cognitive abnormalities that are present. These findings suggest that STEP is an important point for modulation of proteins required for synaptic plasticity.

  20. Abdominal Pain, the Adolescent and Altered Brain Structure and Function.

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    Catherine S Hubbard

    Full Text Available Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS is a functional gastrointestinal (GI disorder of unknown etiology. Although relatively common in children, how this condition affects brain structure and function in a pediatric population remains unclear. Here, we investigate brain changes in adolescents with IBS and healthy controls. Imaging was performed with a Siemens 3 Tesla Trio Tim MRI scanner equipped with a 32-channel head coil. A high-resolution T1-weighted anatomical scan was acquired followed by a T2-weighted functional scan. We used a surface-based morphometric approach along with a seed-based resting-state functional connectivity (RS-FC analysis to determine if groups differed in cortical thickness and whether areas showing structural differences also showed abnormal RS-FC patterns. Patients completed the Abdominal Pain Index and the GI Module of the Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory to assess abdominal pain severity and impact of GI symptoms on health-related quality of life (HRQOL. Disease duration and pain intensity were also assessed. Pediatric IBS patients, relative to controls, showed cortical thickening in the posterior cingulate (PCC, whereas cortical thinning in posterior parietal and prefrontal areas were found, including the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC. In patients, abdominal pain severity was related to cortical thickening in the intra-abdominal area of the primary somatosensory cortex (SI, whereas HRQOL was associated with insular cortical thinning. Disease severity measures correlated with cortical thickness in bilateral DLPFC and orbitofrontal cortex. Patients also showed reduced anti-correlations between PCC and DLPFC compared to controls, a finding that may reflect aberrant connectivity between default mode and cognitive control networks. We are the first to demonstrate concomitant structural and functional brain changes associated with abdominal pain severity, HRQOL related to GI-specific symptoms, and disease

  1. Nanomolar concentrations of nicotine and cotinine alter the development of cultured hippocampal neurons via non-acetylcholine receptor-mediated mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Audesirk, T; Cabell, L

    1999-08-01

    We investigated the effects of nicotine and its metabolic byproduct cotinine on survival, differentiation and intracellular Ca2+ levels of cultured E18 rat hippocampal neurons. We used a range of concentrations from 1 nM to 10 microM, most of which are within the likely range of human fetal exposure from maternal smoking. Nicotine did not influence neuron survival or neurite production. However, at all concentrations tested, nicotine significantly increased branching of both axons and dendrites, an effect which was not reversed by co-culturing with alpha-bungarotoxin, which blocks the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors that predominate in hippocampal cultures (Alkondon and Albuquerque, 1993; Barrantes et al., 1995b). Cotinine at 100 nM and 1 microM significantly reduced neuron survival and neurite production of surviving neurons, but did not significantly alter axon or dendrite branching. These membrane-permeable compounds may work synergistically in the developing embryo to impair the survival and differentiation of hippocampal neurons via intracellular mechanisms.

  2. Effects of photoperiod on kisspeptin neuronal populations of the ewe diencephalon in connection with reproductive function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chalivoix, S; Bagnolini, A; Caraty, A; Cognié, J; Malpaux, B; Dufourny, L

    2010-02-01

    Kisspeptin (Kiss) is a key regulator of reproductive function in both prepubertal and adult mammals. Its expression appears to vary throughout the year in seasonal species. We aimed to determine the impact of a change of photoperiod on the size of Kiss neuronal populations found in the preoptic area (POA) and arcuate nucleus (ARC) of the ewe brain. Using immunocytochemistry, we first examined the proportion of neurones expressing Kiss, using HuC/D as a neuronal marker, at different time-points after transition from long days (LD; 16 : 8 h light/dark cycle) to short days (SD; 8 : 16 h light/dark cycle). Luteinising hormone (LH) secretion was measured in ovariectomised oestradiol replaced ewes from the month preceding the transition to SD until the sacrifice of the animals at days 0, 45 and 112 from this photoperiodic transition. High LH levels were only observed in animals killed at day 112. The number of Kiss neurones/mm(2) doubled in the caudal ARC at day 112. The percentage of neurones showing Kiss immunoreactivity increased significantly in both the POA and ARC in the day 112 group. In a second experiment, ewes kept in LD received an i.c.v. injection of colchicine 20 h before sacrifice. Colchicine treatment increased the number and the percentage of neurones with Kiss in both the POA and caudal ARC. The data obtained suggest that the increase in Kiss neurones detected in the POA and caudal ARC after transition to SD stemmed from an increase in Kiss synthesis. This up-regulation of Kiss content under the shorter day condition appears to be a late event within the cascade activated by a longer secretion of melatonin, which is a critical factor in switching gonadotrophin-releasing hormone secretion to a breeding season profile.

  3. Adrenal morpho-functional alterations in patients with acromegaly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scaroni, C; Selice, R; Benedini, S; De Menis, E; Arosio, M; Ronchi, C; Gasperi, M; Manetti, L; Arnaldi, G; Polenta, B; Boscaro, M; Albiger, N; Martino, E; Mantero, F

    2008-07-01

    Acromegaly is associated with a greater morbidity and higher incidence of tumors, possibly due to the permissive role of elevated GH and IGF-I levels. In the general population, adrenal masses are frequently discovered (prevalence 1-5%) at computed tomography (CT). We evaluated the prevalence of adrenal lesions in patients with acromegaly. We studied 94 acromegalic patients, 54 females (mean age 55.0+/-16.0 yr) and 40 males (mean age 50+/-14 yr) referred to 5 Endocrinology Units between 2001-2003; 49 had active disease and 45 had been treated with surgery and/or were controlled with medical therapy. Abdominal CT showed adrenal lesions in 27 patients; 9 of them had unilateral masses (10%) with benign features (diameter 0.5-3 cm) and 18 had hyperplasia (14 monolateral and 4 bilateral), with no significant differences between patients with active vs controlled disease, and with no correlation between prevalence of masses and duration of disease, GH and IGF-I levels. Hormone study (urinary free cortisol, catecholamines/metanephrines, upright plasma renin activity and aldosterone, morning plasma ACTH and low-dose dexamethasone suppression test) disclosed no major endocrine alterations. During a 1-yr follow-up, the adrenal masses increased in size in 3 cases and 1 patient also developed subclinical Cushing's syndrome. Adrenal lesions seem more frequent in acromegaly than in the general population, but no single factor (GH/IGF-I levels or disease duration) predicts them. The masses appear to be benign and nonhypersecreting, but a longer follow-up is recommended to disclose any changes in their morphofunctional state.

  4. Changes in cognitive state alter human functional brain networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Malaak Nasser Moussa

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available The study of the brain as a whole system can be accomplished using network theory principles. Research has shown that human functional brain networks during a resting state exhibit small-world properties and high degree nodes, or hubs, localized to brain areas consistent with the default mode network (DMN. However, the study of brain networks across different tasks and or cognitive states has been inconclusive. Research in this field is important because the underpinnings of behavioral output are inherently dependent on whether or not brain networks are dynamic. This is the first comprehensive study to evaluate multiple network metrics at a voxel-wise resolution in the human brain at both the whole brain and regional level under various conditions: resting state, visual stimulation, and multisensory (auditory and visual stimulation. Our results show that despite global network stability, functional brain networks exhibit considerable task-induced changes in connectivity, efficiency, and community structure at the regional level.

  5. Functional localization of neurotransmitter receptors and synaptic inputs to mature neurons of the medial superior olive.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Couchman, Kiri; Grothe, Benedikt; Felmy, Felix

    2012-02-01

    Neurons of the medial superior olive (MSO) code for the azimuthal location of low-frequency sound sources via a binaural coincidence detection system operating on microsecond time scales. These neurons are morphologically simple and stereotyped, and anatomical studies have indicated a functional segregation of excitatory and inhibitory inputs between cellular compartments. It is thought that this morphological arrangement holds important implications for the computational task of these cells. To date, however, there has been no functional investigation into synaptic input sites or functional receptor distributions on mature neurons of the MSO. Here, functional neurotransmitter receptor maps for amino-3-hydroxyl-5-methyl-4-isoxazole propionate (AMPA), N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA), glycine (Gly), and ionotropic γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA(A)) receptors (Rs) were compared and complemented by their corresponding synaptic input map. We find in MSO neurons from postnatal day 20-35 gerbils that AMPARs and their excitatory inputs target the soma and dendrites. Functional GlyRs and their inhibitory inputs are predominantly refined to the somata, although a pool of functional GlyRs is present extrasynaptically on MSO dendrites. GABA(A)R responses are present throughout the cell but lack direct synaptic contact indicating an involvement in volume transmission. NMDARs are present both synaptically and extrasynaptically with an overall distribution similar to GlyRs. Interestingly, even at physiological temperatures these functional NMDARs can be potentiated by synaptically released Gly. The functional receptor and synaptic input maps produced here led to the identification of a cross talk between transmitter systems and raises the possibility that extrasynaptic receptors could be modulating leak conductances as a homeostatic mechanism.

  6. CMOS VLSI Hyperbolic Tangent Function & its Derivative Circuits for Neuron Implementation

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    Hussein CHIBLE,

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available The hyperbolic tangent function and its derivative are key essential element in analog signal processing and especially in analog VLSI implementation of neuron of artificial neural networks. The main conditions of these types of circuits are the small silicon area, and the low power consumption. The objective of this paper is to study and design CMOS VLSI hyperbolic tangent function and its derivative circuit for neural network implementation. A circuit is designed and the results are presented

  7. PCBs Alter Dopamine Mediated Function in Aging Workers

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-01

    Learning slope BDI (+) CVLT, Proactive Interference (List B Compared to List A trial 1) Direct Solvent Exposure Based on Hobbies, Osteoporosis , Other...an effect largely prevented by estrogen supplementation (Dluzen, 2000; Miller et al., 1998)—we included sex as a variable in all statistical analyses...et al., 2003; Jaber et al., 1997), modulationof DATdensity or function bypostmenopausal reductions in central estrogen may interact with PCBs

  8. Alterations of Blood Brain Barrier Function in Hyperammonemia: An Overview

    OpenAIRE

    2011-01-01

    Ammonia is a neurotoxin involved in the pathogenesis of neurological conditions associated with hyperammonemia, including hepatic encephalopathy, a condition associated with acute—(ALF) or chronic liver failure. This article reviews evidence that apart from directly affecting the metabolism and function of the central nervous system cells, ammonia influences the passage of different molecules across the blood brain barrier (BBB). A brief description is provided of the tight junctions, which c...

  9. Altered spontaneous brain activity in patients with acute spinal cord injury revealed by resting-state functional MRI.

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    Ling Zhu

    Full Text Available Previous neuroimaging studies have provided evidence of structural and functional reorganization of brain in patients with chronic spinal cord injury (SCI. However, it remains unknown whether the spontaneous brain activity changes in acute SCI. In this study, we investigated intrinsic brain activity in acute SCI patients using a regional homogeneity (ReHo analysis based on resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging.A total of 15 patients with acute SCI and 16 healthy controls participated in the study. The ReHo value was used to evaluate spontaneous brain activity, and voxel-wise comparisons of ReHo were performed to identify brain regions with altered spontaneous brain activity between groups. We also assessed the associations between ReHo and the clinical scores in brain regions showing changed spontaneous brain activity.Compared with the controls, the acute SCI patients showed decreased ReHo in the bilateral primary motor cortex/primary somatosensory cortex, bilateral supplementary motor area/dorsal lateral prefrontal cortex, right inferior frontal gyrus, bilateral dorsal anterior cingulate cortex and bilateral caudate; and increased ReHo in bilateral precuneus, the left inferior parietal lobe, the left brainstem/hippocampus, the left cingulate motor area, bilateral insula, bilateral thalamus and bilateral cerebellum. The average ReHo values of the left thalamus and right insula were negatively correlated with the international standards for the neurological classification of spinal cord injury motor scores.Our findings indicate that acute distant neuronal damage has an immediate impact on spontaneous brain activity. In acute SCI patients, the ReHo was prominently altered in brain regions involved in motor execution and cognitive control, default mode network, and which are associated with sensorimotor compensatory reorganization. Abnormal ReHo values in the left thalamus and right insula could serve as potential biomarkers for

  10. Gliotransmission by Prostaglandin E2: a prerequisite for GnRH neuronal function?

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    Jerome eClasadonte

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available Over the past four decades it has become clear that prostaglandin E2 (PGE2, a phospholipid-derived signaling molecule, plays a fundamental role in modulating the GnRH neuroendocrine system and in shaping the hypothalamus. In this review, after a brief historical overview, we highlight studies revealing that PGE2 released by glial cells such as astrocytes and tanycytes is intimately involved in the active control of GnRH neuronal activity and neurosecretion. Recent evidence suggests that hypothalamic astrocytes surrounding GnRH neuronal cell bodies may respond to neuronal activity with an activation of the erbB receptor tyrosine-kinase signaling, triggering the release of PGE2 as a chemical transmitter from the glia themselves, and, in turn, leading to the feedback regulation of GnRH neuronal activity. At the GnRH neurohemal junction, in the median eminence of the hypothalamus, PGE2 is released by tanycytes in response to cell-cell signaling initiated by glial cells and vascular endothelial cells. Upon its release, PGE2 causes the retraction of the tanycyte end feet enwrapping the GnRH nerve terminals, enabling them to approach the adjacent pericapillary space and thus likely facilitating neurohormone diffusion from these nerve terminals into the pituitary portal blood. In view of these new insights, we suggest that synaptically-associated astrocytes and perijunctional tanycytes are integral modulatory elements of GnRH neuronal function at the cell soma/dendrite and nerve terminal levels, respectively.

  11. Transient oxytocin signaling primes the development and function of excitatory hippocampal neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ripamonti, Silvia; Ambrozkiewicz, Mateusz C; Guzzi, Francesca; Gravati, Marta; Biella, Gerardo; Bormuth, Ingo; Hammer, Matthieu; Tuffy, Liam P; Sigler, Albrecht; Kawabe, Hiroshi; Nishimori, Katsuhiko; Toselli, Mauro; Brose, Nils; Parenti, Marco; Rhee, JeongSeop

    2017-01-01

    Beyond its role in parturition and lactation, oxytocin influences higher brain processes that control social behavior of mammals, and perturbed oxytocin signaling has been linked to the pathogenesis of several psychiatric disorders. However, it is still largely unknown how oxytocin exactly regulates neuronal function. We show that early, transient oxytocin exposure in vitro inhibits the development of hippocampal glutamatergic neurons, leading to reduced dendrite complexity, synapse density, and excitatory transmission, while sparing GABAergic neurons. Conversely, genetic elimination of oxytocin receptors increases the expression of protein components of excitatory synapses and excitatory synaptic transmission in vitro. In vivo, oxytocin-receptor-deficient hippocampal pyramidal neurons develop more complex dendrites, which leads to increased spine number and reduced γ-oscillations. These results indicate that oxytocin controls the development of hippocampal excitatory neurons and contributes to the maintenance of a physiological excitation/inhibition balance, whose disruption can cause neurobehavioral disturbances. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.22466.001 PMID:28231043

  12. Studies on functional roles of the histaminergic neuron system by using pharmacological agents, knockout mice and positron emission tomography

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    Watanabe, Takehiko; Yanai, Kazuhiko [Tohoku Univ., Sendai (Japan). Graduate School of Medicine

    2001-12-01

    Since one of us, Takehiko Watanabe (TW), elucidated the location and distribution of the histaminergic neuron system in the brain with antibody raised against L-histidine decarboxylase (a histamine-forming enzyme, HDC) as a marker in 1984 and came to Tohoku University School of Medicine in Sendai, we have been collaborating on the functions of this neuron system by using pharmacological agents, knockout mice of the histamine-related genes, and, in some cases, positron emission tomography (PET). Many of our graduate students and colleagues have been actively involved in histamine research since 1985. Our extensive studies have clarified some of the functions of histamine neurons using methods from molecular techniques to non-invasive human PET imaging. Histamine neurons are involved in many brain functions, such as spontaneous locomotion, arousal in wake-sleep cycle, appetite control, seizures, learning and memory, aggressive behavior and emotion. Particularly, the histaminergic neuron system is one of the most important neuron systems to maintain and stimulate wakefulness. Histamine also functions as a biprotection system against various noxious and unfavorable stimuli (for examples, convulsion, nociception, drug sensitization, ischemic lesions, and stress). Although activators of histamine neurons have not been clinically available until now, we would like to point out that the activation of the histaminergic neuron system is important to maintain mental health. Here, we summarize the newly-discovered functions of histamine neurons mainly on the basis of results from our research groups. (author)

  13. Altered functional and structural connectivity networks in psychogenic non-epileptic seizures.

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    Ju-Rong Ding

    Full Text Available Psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES are paroxysmal behaviors that resemble epileptic seizures but lack abnormal electrical activity. Recent studies suggest aberrant functional connectivity involving specific brain regions in PNES. Little is known, however, about alterations of topological organization of whole-brain functional and structural connectivity networks in PNES. We constructed functional connectivity networks from resting-state functional MRI signal correlations and structural connectivity networks from diffusion tensor imaging tractography in 17 PNES patients and 20 healthy controls. Graph theoretical analysis was employed to compute network properties. Moreover, we investigated the relationship between functional and structural connectivity networks. We found that PNES patients exhibited altered small-worldness in both functional and structural networks and shifted towards a more regular (lattice-like organization, which could serve as a potential imaging biomarker for PNES. In addition, many regional characteristics were altered in structural connectivity network, involving attention, sensorimotor, subcortical and default-mode networks. These regions with altered nodal characteristics likely reflect disease-specific pathophysiology in PNES. Importantly, the coupling strength of functional-structural connectivity was decreased and exhibited high sensitivity and specificity to differentiate PNES patients from healthy controls, suggesting that the decoupling strength of functional-structural connectivity might be an important characteristic reflecting the mechanisms of PNES. This is the first study to explore the altered topological organization in PNES combining functional and structural connectivity networks, providing a new way to understand the pathophysiological mechanisms of PNES.

  14. Altered colonic function and microbiota profile in a mouse model of chronic depression

    OpenAIRE

    Park, A J; COLLINS, J.; Blennerhassett, P. A.; Ghia, J E; Verdu, E F; Bercik, P; Collins, S.M.

    2013-01-01

    Background Depression often coexists with the irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) which is characterized by alterations in gut function. There is emerging evidence that the microbial composition (microbiota) of the gut is altered in IBS, but the basis for this is poorly understood. The aim of this study was to determine whether the induction of chronic depression results in changes in the colonic function and in its microbial community, and to explore underlying mechanisms. Methods Bilateral olfac...

  15. Characterizing genomic alterations in cancer by complementary functional associations | Office of Cancer Genomics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Systematic efforts to sequence the cancer genome have identified large numbers of mutations and copy number alterations in human cancers. However, elucidating the functional consequences of these variants, and their interactions to drive or maintain oncogenic states, remains a challenge in cancer research. We developed REVEALER, a computational method that identifies combinations of mutually exclusive genomic alterations correlated with functional phenotypes, such as the activation or gene dependency of oncogenic pathways or sensitivity to a drug treatment.

  16. Investigation of Biogeochemical Functional Proxies in Headwater Streams Across a Range of Channel and Catchment Alterations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berkowitz, Jacob F.; Summers, Elizabeth A.; Noble, Chris V.; White, John R.; DeLaune, Ronald D.

    2014-03-01

    Historically, headwater streams received limited protection and were subjected to extensive alteration from logging, farming, mining, and development activities. Despite these alterations, headwater streams provide essential ecological functions. This study examines proxy measures of biogeochemical function across a range of catchment alterations by tracking nutrient cycling (i.e., inputs, processing, and stream loading) with leaf litter fall, leaf litter decomposition, and water quality parameters. Nutrient input and processing remained highest in second growth forests (the least altered areas within the region), while recently altered locations transported higher loads of nutrients, sediments, and conductivity. Biogeochemical functional proxies of C and N input and processing significantly, positively correlated with rapid assessment results (Pearson coefficient = 0.67-0.81; P = 0.002-0.016). Additionally, stream loading equations demonstrate that N and P transport, sediment, and specific conductivity negatively correlated with rapid assessment scores (Pearson coefficient = 0.56-0.81; P = 0.002-0.048). The observed increase in stream loading with lower rapid assessment scores indicates that catchment alterations impact stream chemistry and that rapid assessments provide useful proxy measures of function in headwater ecosystems. Significant differences in nutrient processing, stream loading, water quality, and rapid assessment results were also observed between recently altered (e.g., mined) headwater streams and older forested catchments (Mann-Whitney U = 24; P = 0.01-0.024). Findings demonstrate that biogeochemical function is reduced in altered catchments, and rapid assessment scores respond to a combination of alteration type and recovery time. An analysis examining time and economic requirements of proxy measurements highlights the benefits of rapid assessment methods in evaluating biogeochemical functions.

  17. Functional properties of parietal hand manipulation-related neurons and mirror neurons responding to vision of own hand action.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maeda, Kazutaka; Ishida, Hiroaki; Nakajima, Katsumi; Inase, Masahiko; Murata, Akira

    2015-03-01

    Parietofrontal pathways play an important role in visually guided motor control. In this pathway, hand manipulation-related neurons in the inferior parietal lobule represent 3-D properties of an object and motor patterns to grasp it. Furthermore, mirror neurons show visual responses that are concerned with the actions of others and motor-related activity during execution of the same grasping action. Because both of these categories of neurons integrate visual and motor signals, these neurons may play a role in motor control based on visual feedback signals. The aim of this study was to investigate whether these neurons in inferior parietal lobule including the anterior intraparietal area and PFG of macaques represent visual images of the monkey's own hand during a self-generated grasping action. We recorded 235 neurons related to hand manipulation tasks. Of these, 54 responded to video clips of the monkey's own hand action, the same as visual feedback during that action or clips of the experimenter's hand action in a lateral view. Of these 54 neurons, 25 responded to video clips of the monkey's own hand, even without an image of the target object. We designated these 25 neurons as "hand-type." Thirty-three of 54 neurons that were defined as mirror neurons showed visual responses to the experimenter's action and motor responses. Thirteen of these mirror neurons were classified as hand-type. These results suggest that activity of hand manipulation-related and mirror neurons in anterior intraparietal/PFG plays a fundamental role in monitoring one's own body state based on visual feedback.

  18. Age-related neuroinflammatory changes negatively impact on neuronal function

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    Marina A Lynch

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Neuroinflammatory changes, characterized by an increase in microglial activation and often accompanied by upregulation of inflammatory cytokines like interleukin-1β (IL-1β, are common to many, if not all, neurodegenerative diseases. Similar, though less dramatic neuroinflammatory changes are also known to occur with age. Among the consequences of these changes is an impairment in synaptic function and the evidence suggests that inflammatory cytokines may be the primary contributory factor responsible for the deficits in synaptic plasticity which have been identified in aged rodents. Specifically a decrease in the ability of aged rats to sustain long-term potentiation (LTP in perforant path-granule cells of the hippocampus is associated with increased microglial activation. This review considers the evidence which suggests a causal relationship between these changes and the factors which contribute to the age-related microglial activation, and reflects on data which demonstrate that agents which inhibit microglial activation also improve ability of rats to sustain LTP.

  19. Altering Cardiac Function via Transgenesis A Nuts and Bolts Approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robbins, J

    1997-08-01

    Transgenesis provides a means to modify the mammalian genome. By directing expression of a engineered protein to the heart, one now is able to remodel effectively the cardiac protein profile and study the consequences of a single genetic manipulation at the molecular, biochemical, cytological, and physiologic levels. Often, a particular pathology or even a global remodeling process such as hypertrophy is accompanied by the upregulation or downregulation of a gene or set(s) of genes. What is not known is whether these changes represent a beneficial compensatory response or contribute to the continued degeneration of normal heart function. The ability to perform genetic manipulations on cardiac gene expression via transgenesis offers one a rapid and effective means of extending the correlations noted to the mechanistic level. Now, one can, in theory, express a candidate protein at a particular developmental time and determine the direct consequences of its appearance. Similarly, one can explore structure-function relationships, both between different forms of a protein family and in terms of active domains within a protein, by expressing a transgene that encodes a suitable mutation or ectopic protein isoform. This review explores the practical considerations of the transgenic approach in terms of what is important for a successful experiment from the necessary animal husbandry to designing constructs that will express at appropriate levels in the heart. (Trends Cardiovasc Med 1997;7:185-191). © 1997, Elsevier Science Inc.

  20. Food-associated cues alter forebrain functional connectivity as assessed with immediate early gene and proenkephalin expression

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    Landry Charles F

    2007-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Cues predictive of food availability are powerful modulators of appetite as well as food-seeking and ingestive behaviors. The neurobiological underpinnings of these conditioned responses are not well understood. Monitoring regional immediate early gene expression is a method used to assess alterations in neuronal metabolism resulting from upstream intracellular and extracellular signaling. Furthermore, assessing the expression of multiple immediate early genes offers a window onto the possible sequelae of exposure to food cues, since the function of each gene differs. We used immediate early gene and proenkephalin expression as a means of assessing food cue-elicited regional activation and alterations in functional connectivity within the forebrain. Results Contextual cues associated with palatable food elicited conditioned motor activation and corticosterone release in rats. This motivational state was associated with increased transcription of the activity-regulated genes homer1a, arc, zif268, ngfi-b and c-fos in corticolimbic, thalamic and hypothalamic areas and of proenkephalin within striatal regions. Furthermore, the functional connectivity elicited by food cues, as assessed by an inter-regional multigene-expression correlation method, differed substantially from that elicited by neutral cues. Specifically, food cues increased cortical engagement of the striatum, and within the nucleus accumbens, shifted correlations away from the shell towards the core. Exposure to the food-associated context also induced correlated gene expression between corticostriatal networks and the basolateral amygdala, an area critical for learning and responding to the incentive value of sensory stimuli. This increased corticostriatal-amygdalar functional connectivity was absent in the control group exposed to innocuous cues. Conclusion The results implicate correlated activity between the cortex and the striatum, especially the nucleus

  1. Functional olfactory sensory neurons housed in olfactory sensilla on the ovipositor of the hawkmoth Manduca sexta.

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    Christian Felix Klinner

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Olfactory systems evolved to detect and identify volatile chemical cues, in many cases across great distances. However, the precision of copulatory and oviposition behaviors suggest that they may be guided by olfactory cues detected by sensory systems located on or near the ovipositor. Here we present evidence of a small number of functional olfactory sensilla on the ovipositor of the hawkmoth Manduca sexta. Gene expression analysis of isolated ovipositor tissue indicated active transcription of gustatory and both classes of olfactory receptor genes. Expression of the olfactory co-receptor ORCo and the antennal ionotropic co-receptors IR8a and IR25a suggests that functional olfactory proteins may be present in the sensory structures located on the ovipositor. Scanning electron microscopy identified five to nine porous sensilla on each of the anal papillae of the ovipositor. Furthermore, HRP immunostaining indicated that these sensilla are innervated by the dendrite-like structures from multiple neurons. Finally, we functionally characterized neural responses in these sensilla using single sensillum recordings. Stimulation with a panel of 142 monomolecular odorants revealed that these sensilla indeed house functional olfactory sensory neurons (OSNs. While it remains to be determined what role these chemosensory sensilla play in odor and gustatory guided behaviors, our data clearly demonstrate an olfactory function for neurons present in M. sexta ovipositor sensilla.

  2. Control of neuronal ion channel function by glycogen synthase kinase-3: new prospective for an old kinase

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Norelle Christine Wildburger

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK-3 is an evolutionarily conserved multifaceted ubiquitous enzyme. In the central nervous system (CNS, GSK-3 acts through an intricate network of intracellular signaling pathways culminating in a highly divergent cascade of phosphorylations that control neuronal function during development and adulthood. Accumulated evidence indicates that altered levels of GSK-3 correlate with maladaptive plasticity of neuronal circuitries in psychiatric disorders, addictive behaviors, and neurodegenerative diseases, and pharmacological interventions known to limit GSK-3 can counteract some of these deficits. Thus, targeting the GSK-3 cascade for therapeutic interventions against this broad spectrum of brain diseases has raised a tremendous interest. Yet, the multitude of GSK-3 downstream effectors poses a substantial challenge in the development of selective and potent medications that could efficiently block or modulate the activity of this enzyme. Although the full range of GSK-3 molecular targets are far from resolved, exciting new evidence indicates that ion channels regulating excitability, neurotransmitter release, and synaptic transmission, which ultimately contribute to the mechanisms underling brain plasticity and higher level cognitive and emotional processing, are new promising targets of this enzyme. Here, we will revise this new emerging role of GSK-3 in controlling the activity of voltage-gated Na+, K+, Ca2+ channels and ligand-gated glutamate receptors with the goal of highlighting new relevant endpoints of the neuronal GSK-3 cascade that could provide a platform for a better understanding of the mechanisms underlying the dysfunction of this kinase in the CNS and serve as a guidance for medication development against the broad range of GSK-3-linked human diseases.

  3. Functional changes in piriform cortex pyramidal neurons in the chronic methamphetamine-treated rat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hori, Nobuaki; Kadota, Tomoko; Akaike, Norio

    2015-01-01

    Chronic treatment of rats with methamphetamine (MAP) causes a range of functional changes to the central nervous system (CNS), including a toxicity that is widespread throughout the brain (Frost and Cadet 2000; Fasihpour et al. 2013). In this report, we examined the effect of chronic MAP treatment on pyramidal neurons of the rat piriform cortex, an area involved in sensory processing, associative learning and a model system for studies on synaptic plasticity. MAP treatment significantly depolarized the membrane potential and decreased neuronal input resistance. Furthermore, the voltage-dependence of both AMPA and NMDA responses was disturbed by chronic MAP treatment, and the extent of long-term potentiation (LTP) was decreased. Morphological changes of MAP-treated rat pyramidal neurons were observed as blebbing of the dendrite trees. The changes we observed represent detrimental effects on the function of piriform cortical neurons further illustrating deficits in synaptic plasticity extend beyond the hippocampus. These changes may contribute to behavioural deficits in chronic MAP-treated animals.

  4. Analyzing topological characteristics of neuronal functional networks in the rat brain

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lu, Hu [School of Computer Science and Communication Engineering, Jiangsu University, Jiangsu 212003 (China); School of Computer Science, Fudan University, Shanghai 200433 (China); Yang, Shengtao [Institutes of Brain Science, Fudan University, Shanghai 200433 (China); Song, Yuqing [School of Computer Science and Communication Engineering, Jiangsu University, Jiangsu 212003 (China); Wei, Hui [School of Computer Science, Fudan University, Shanghai 200433 (China)

    2014-08-28

    In this study, we recorded spike trains from brain cortical neurons of several behavioral rats in vivo by using multi-electrode recordings. An NFN was constructed in each trial, obtaining a total of 150 NFNs in this study. The topological characteristics of NFNs were analyzed by using the two most important characteristics of complex networks, namely, small-world structure and community structure. We found that the small-world properties exist in different NFNs constructed in this study. Modular function Q was used to determine the existence of community structure in NFNs, through which we found that community-structure characteristics, which are related to recorded spike train data sets, are more evident in the Y-maze task than in the DM-GM task. Our results can also be used to analyze further the relationship between small-world characteristics and the cognitive behavioral responses of rats. - Highlights: • We constructed the neuronal function networks based on the recorded neurons. • We analyzed the two main complex network characteristics, namely, small-world structure and community structure. • NFNs which were constructed based on the recorded neurons in this study exhibit small-world properties. • Some NFNs have community structure characteristics.

  5. Neurokinin B and reproductive functions: "KNDy neuron" model in mammals and the emerging story in fish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Guangfu; Lin, Chengyuan; He, Mulan; Wong, Anderson O L

    2014-11-01

    In mammals, neurokinin B (NKB), the gene product of the tachykinin family member TAC3, is known to be a key regulator for episodic release of luteinizing hormone (LH). Its regulatory actions are mediated by a subpopulation of kisspeptin neurons within the arcuate nucleus with co-expression of NKB and dynorphin A (commonly called the "KNDy neurons"). By forming an "autosynaptic feedback loop" within the hypothalamus, the KNDy neurons can modulate gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) pulsatility and subsequent LH release in the pituitary. NKB regulation of LH secretion has been recently demonstrated in zebrafish, suggesting that the reproductive functions of NKB may be conserved from fish to mammals. Interestingly, the TAC3 genes in fish not only encode the mature peptide of NKB but also a novel tachykinin-like peptide, namely NKB-related peptide (or neurokinin F). Recent studies in zebrafish also reveal that the neuroanatomy of TAC3/kisspeptin system within the fish brain is quite different from that of mammals. In this article, the current ideas of "KNDy neuron" model for GnRH regulation and steroid feedback, other reproductive functions of NKB including its local actions in the gonad and placenta, the revised model of tachykinin evolution from invertebrates to vertebrates, as well as the emerging story of the two TAC3 gene products in fish, NKB and NKB-related peptide, will be reviewed with stress on the areas with interesting questions for future investigations.

  6. Altered Cortical Thickness and Tract Integrity of the Mirror Neuron System and Associated Social Communication in Autism Spectrum Disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chien, Hsiang-Yun; Gau, Susan Shur-Fen; Hsu, Yung-Chin; Chen, Yu-Jen; Lo, Yu-Chun; Shih, Yao-Chia; Tseng, Wen-Yih Isaac

    2015-12-01

    Previous studies using neural activity recording and neuroimaging techniques have reported functional deficits in the mirror neuron system (MNS) for individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). However, a few studies focusing on gray and white matter structures of the MNS have yielded inconsistent results. The current study recruited adolescents and young adults with ASD (aged 15-26 years) and age-matched typically developing (TD) controls (aged 14-25 years). The cortical thickness (CT) and microstructural integrity of the tracts connecting the regions forming the classical MNS were investigated. High-resolution T1-weighted imaging and diffusion spectrum imaging were performed to quantify the CT and tract integrity, respectively. The structural covariance of the CT of the MNS regions revealed a weaker coordination of the MNS network in ASD. A strong correlation was found between the integrity of the right frontoparietal tracts and the social communication subscores measured by the Chinese version of the Social Communication Questionnaire. The results showed that there were no significant mean differences in the CTs and tract integrity between the ASD and TD groups, but revealed a moderate or even reverse age effect on the frontal MNS structures in ASD. In conclusion, aberrant structural coordination may be an underlying factor affecting the function of the MNS in ASD patients. The association between the right frontoparietal tracts and social communication performance implies a neural correlate of communication processing in the autistic brain. This study provides evidence of abnormal MNS structures and their influence on social communication in individuals with ASD.

  7. GABA concentration and GABAergic neuron populations in limbic areas are differentially altered by brain serotonin deficiency in Tph2 knockout mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waider, Jonas; Proft, Florian; Langlhofer, Georg; Asan, Esther; Lesch, Klaus-Peter; Gutknecht, Lise

    2013-02-01

    While tryptophan hydroxylase-2 (Tph2) null mutant (Tph2(-/-)) mice are completely deficient in brain serotonin (5-HT) synthesis, the formation of serotonergic neurons and pathfinding of their projections are not impaired. However, 5-HT deficiency, during development and in the adult, might affect morphological and functional parameters of other neural systems. To assess the influence of 5-HT deficiency on γ-amino butyric acid (GABA) systems, we carried out measurements of GABA concentrations in limbic brain regions of adult male wildtype (wt), heterozygous (Tph2(+/-)) and Tph2(-/-) mice. In addition, unbiased stereological estimation of GABAergic interneuron numbers and density was performed in subregions of amygdala and hippocampus. Amygdala and prefrontal cortex displayed significantly increased and decreased GABA concentrations, respectively, exclusively in Tph2(+/-) mice while no changes were detected between Tph2(-/-) and wt mice. In contrast, in the hippocampus, increased GABA concentrations were found in Tph2(-/-) mice. While total cell density in the anterior basolateral amygdala did not differ between genotypes, the number and density of the GABAergic interneurons were significantly decreased in Tph2(-/-) mice, with the group of parvalbumin (PV)-immunoreactive (ir) interneurons contributing somewhat less to the decrease than that of non-PV-ir GABAergic interneurons. Major morphological changes were also absent in the dorsal hippocampus, and only a trend toward reduced density of PV-ir cells was observed in the CA3 region of Tph2(-/-) mice. Our findings are the first to document that life-long reduction or complete lack of brain 5-HT transmission causes differential changes of GABA systems in limbic regions which are key players in emotional learning and memory processes. The changes likely reflect a combination of developmental alterations and functional adaptations of emotion circuits to balance the lack of 5-HT, and may underlie altered emotional

  8. TSH RECEPTOR GENETIC ALTERATIONS IN THE AUTONOMOUSLY FUNCTIONING THYROID ADENOMAS

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    施秉银; 李雪萍; 李社莉; 薛明战; 王毅; 徐莉

    2004-01-01

    Objective To determine the relationship between TSH receptor gene mutations and autonomously functioning thyroid adenomas (AFTAs). Methods The thyroid samples from 14 cases of diagnosed AFTAs were analyzed, with normal thyroid specimens adjacent to the tumors as controls. The 155 base pairs DNA fragments which encompassed the third cytoplasmic loop and the sixth transmembrane segments in the TSH receptor gene exon 10 were amplified by Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and analyzed by the single-strand conformation polymorphism (SSCP). Direct sequencing of the PCR products was performed with Prism Dye Terminator Cycle Sequencing Core Kit. Results 6 of 14 AFTA specimens displayed abnormal migration in SSCP analysis. In sequence analysis of 3 abnormally migrated samples, one base substitution at nucleotide 1957 (A to C) and two same insertion mutations of one adenosine nucleotide between nucleotide 1972 and 1973 were identified. No mutations were found in controls. Conclusion This study confirmed the presence of TSH receptor gene mutations in AFTAs; both one-point substitution mutation and one-base insertion mutation were found to be responsible for the pathogenesis of AFTAs.

  9. Free p-Cresol Alters Neutrophil Function in Dogs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bosco, Anelise Maria; Pereira, Priscila Preve; Almeida, Breno Fernando Martins; Narciso, Luis Gustavo; Dos Santos, Diego Borba; Santos-Neto, Álvaro José Dos; Ferreira, Wagner Luis; Ciarlini, Paulo César

    2016-05-01

    To achieve a clearer understanding of the mechanisms responsible for neutrophil dysfunction recently described in dogs with chronic renal failure (CRF), the plasma concentrations of free p-cresol in healthy dogs (n = 20) and those with CRF (n = 20) were compared. The degree of correlation was determined between plasma levels of p-cresol and markers of oxidative stress and function of neutrophils in these dogs. The effect of this compound on oxidative metabolism and apoptosis was assessed in neutrophils isolated from 16 healthy dogs incubated in RPMI 1640 supplemented with p-cresol (0.405 mg/L) and compared with medium supplemented with uremic plasma (50%). To achieve this, the plasma concentration of p-cresol was quantified by liquid phase high-performance liquid chromatography. The neutrophil oxidative metabolism was determined using the probes hydroethidine and 2',7'-dichlorofluorescein diacetate and apoptosis was measured using Annexin V-PE by capillary flow cytometry. Compared with the healthy dogs, uremic dogs presented higher concentrations of free p-cresol, greater oxidative stress, and neutrophils primed for accelerated apoptosis. The free p-cresol induced in neutrophils from healthy dogs increased apoptosis and decreased reactive oxygen species production. We conclude that the health status presented during uremia concomitant with the increase in plasma free p-cresol can contribute to the presence of immunosuppression in dogs with CRF.

  10. Altered effector function of peripheral cytotoxic cells in COPD

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Corne Jonathan M

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background There is mounting evidence that perforin and granzymes are important mediators in the lung destruction seen in COPD. We investigated the characteristics of the three main perforin and granzyme containing peripheral cells, namely CD8+ T lymphocytes, natural killer (NK; CD56+CD3- cells and NKT-like (CD56+CD3+ cells. Methods Peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs were isolated and cell numbers and intracellular granzyme B and perforin were analysed by flow cytometry. Immunomagnetically selected CD8+ T lymphocytes, NK (CD56+CD3- and NKT-like (CD56+CD3+ cells were used in an LDH release assay to determine cytotoxicity and cytotoxic mechanisms were investigated by blocking perforin and granzyme B with relevant antibodies. Results The proportion of peripheral blood NKT-like (CD56+CD3+ cells in smokers with COPD (COPD subjects was significantly lower (0.6% than in healthy smokers (smokers (2.8%, p +CD3- cells from COPD subjects were significantly less cytotoxic than in smokers (16.8% vs 51.9% specific lysis, p +CD3+ cells (16.7% vs 52.4% specific lysis, p +CD3- and NKT-like (CD56+CD3+ cells from smokers and HNS. Conclusion In this study, we show that the relative numbers of peripheral blood NK (CD56+CD3- and NKT-like (CD56+CD3+ cells in COPD subjects are reduced and that their cytotoxic effector function is defective.

  11. Alteration in sensory nerve function following electrical shock.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abramov, G S; Bier, M; Capelli-Schellpfeffer, M; Lee, R C

    1996-12-01

    A study of the effects of electrical shock on peripheral nerve fibres is presented. Strength and duration of the applied shocks were similar to those encountered in a typical industrial electrical accident. The purpose of this study is: (i) to identify the electrophysiological and morphological change in nerve fibres after the application of electrical current shocks; (ii) to examine the ability of the peripheral nerve fibres to spontaneously regain function and; (iii) to demonstrate the usefulness of the sensory refractory spectrum as an additional technique in assessing the damage. Three groups of animals received twelve 4-ms electric field pulses of approximately 37 V/cm (n = 5), 75 V/cm (n = 9) and 150 V/cm (n = 6), respectively. Group 4 was a control group and received a direct application of 2 per cent lidocaine over the sciatic nerve for 30 min. Thermal effects of the shocks were negligible. The sensory refractory spectrum shows that electrical shock damage was mainly to the large, fast myelinated fibres and that higher field strengths do more damage. Also in a histological examination it was found that the more heavily shocked myelinated fibres had sustained more damage.

  12. Glial response in the rat models of functionally distinct cholinergic neuronal denervations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bataveljic, Danijela; Petrovic, Jelena; Lazic, Katarina; Saponjic, Jasna; Andjus, Pavle

    2015-02-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) involves selective loss of basal forebrain cholinergic neurons, particularly in the nucleus basalis (NB). Similarly, Parkinson's disease (PD) might involve the selective loss of pedunculopontine tegmental nucleus (PPT) cholinergic neurons. Therefore, lesions of these functionally distinct cholinergic centers in rats might serve as models of AD and PD cholinergic neuropathologies. Our previous articles described dissimilar sleep/wake-state disorders in rat models of AD and PD cholinergic neuropathologies. This study further examines astroglial and microglial responses as underlying pathologies in these distinct sleep disorders. Unilateral lesions of the NB or the PPT were induced with rats under ketamine/diazepam anesthesia (50 mg/kg i.p.) by using stereotaxically guided microinfusion of the excitotoxin ibotenic acid (IBO). Twenty-one days after the lesion, loss of cholinergic neurons was quantified by nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate-diaphorase histochemistry, and the astroglial and microglial responses were quantified by glia fibrillary acidic protein/OX42 immunohistochemistry. This study demonstrates, for the first time, the anatomofunctionally related astroglial response following unilateral excitotoxic PPT cholinergic neuronal lesion. Whereas IBO NB and PPT lesions similarly enhanced local astroglial and microglial responses, astrogliosis in the PPT was followed by a remote astrogliosis within the ipslilateral NB. Conversely, there was no microglial response within the NB after PPT lesions. Our results reveal the rostrorostral PPT-NB astrogliosis after denervation of cholinergic neurons in the PPT. This hierarchically and anatomofunctionally guided PPT-NB astrogliosis emerged following cholinergic neuronal loss greater than 17% throughout the overall rostrocaudal PPT dimension.

  13. Extrasynaptic neurotransmission in the modulation of brain function. Focus on the striatal neuronal-glial networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kjell eFuxe

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Extrasynaptic neurotransmission is an important short distance form of volume transmission (VT and describes the extracellular diffusion of transmitters and modulators after synaptic spillover or extrasynaptic release in the local circuit regions binding to and activating mainly extrasynaptic neuronal and glial receptors in the neuroglial networks of the brain. Receptor-receptor interactions in G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR heteromers play a major role, on dendritic spines and nerve terminals including glutamate synapses, in the integrative processes of the extrasynaptic signaling. Heteromeric complexes between GPCR and ion-channel receptors play a special role in the integration of the synaptic and extrasynaptic signals. Changes in extracellular concentrations of the classical synaptic neurotransmitters glutamate and GABA found with microdialysis is likely an expression of the activity of the neuron-astrocyte unit of the brain and can be used as an index of VT-mediated actions of these two neurotransmitters in the brain. Thus, the activity of neurons may be functionally linked to the activity of astrocytes, which may release glutamate and GABA to the extracellular space where extrasynaptic glutamate and GABA receptors do exist. Wiring transmission (WT and VT are fundamental properties of all neurons of the CNS but the balance between WT and VT varies from one nerve cell population to the other. The focus is on the striatal cellular networks, and the WT and VT and their integration via receptor heteromers are described in the GABA projection neurons, the glutamate, dopamine, 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT and histamine striatal afferents, the cholinergic interneurons and different types of GABA interneurons. In addition, the role in these networks of VT signaling of the energy-dependent modulator adenosine and of endocannabinoids mainly formed in the striatal projection neurons will be underlined to understand the communication in the striatal

  14. Maturation of neuronal form and function in a mouse thalamo-cortical circuit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warren, R A; Jones, E G

    1997-01-01

    Postnatal development of physiological properties underlying slow intrathalamic oscillations was studied by whole-cell recording from synaptically coupled neurons of the reticular nucleus (RTN) and ventral posterior nucleus (VPN) of mouse brain slices in vitro and compared with the morphological development of dye-injected cells. Between postnatal days 3 and 11 (P3-P11), progressive changes in RTN and VPN neurons included shortening of the membrane time constant, decreasing input resistance, and lowering of the resting membrane potential (RMP). Low-threshold Ca2+ spikes (LTS) were present from P3, but their capacity to sustain multispike bursts was limited before P11. Synaptic responses were evoked in RTN and VPN neurons by electrical stimulation of the internal capsule from P3. Younger RTN neurons responded with a single spike, but their capacity to fire bursts gradually improved as the RMP reached levels below the LTS activation potential. Concomitantly, as the reversal potential of the inhibitory postsynaptic potential in VPN neurons became more negative, its capacity to deinactivate the LTS increased, and rebound bursts that could maintain oscillations were produced; sustained oscillations became the typical response to internal capsule stimulation at P12. The functional maturation of the intrathalamic circuitry, particularly between P10 and P14, occurs in parallel with the morphological maturation (size, dendritic growth, and dendritic field structure) of individual RTN and VPN neurons, as studied by confocal microscopy. Maturation of RTN cells led that of VPN cells by 2-3 d. The appearance of intrathalamic oscillations is probably correlated with the appearance of slow-wave sleep in postnatal animals.

  15. Functional heterogeneity of NMDA receptors in rat substantia nigra pars compacta and reticulata neurones.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suárez, F; Zhao, Q; Monaghan, D T; Jane, D E; Jones, S; Gibb, A J

    2010-08-01

    The nigra substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc) and substantia pars reticulata (SNr) form two major basal ganglia components with different functional roles. SNc dopaminergic (DA) neurones are vulnerable to cell death in Parkinson's disease, and NMDA receptor activation is a potential contributing mechanism. We have investigated the sensitivity of whole-cell and synaptic NMDA responses to intracellular ATP and GTP application in the SNc and SNr from rats on postnatal day (P) 7 and P28. Both NMDA current density (pA/pF) and desensitization to prolonged or repeated NMDA application were greater in the SNr than in the SNc. When ATP levels were not supplemented, responses to prolonged NMDA administration desensitized in P7 SNc DA neurones but not at P28. At P28, SNr neurones desensitized more than SNc neurones, with or without added ATP. Responses to brief NMDA applications and synaptic NMDA currents were not sensitive to inclusion of ATP in the pipette solution. To investigate these differences between the SNc and SNr, NR2 subunit-selective antagonists were tested. NMDA currents were inhibited by ifenprodil (10 microM) and UBP141 (4 microM), but not by Zn(2+) (100 nm), in both the SNr and SNc, suggesting that SNc and SNr neurones express similar receptor subunits; NR2B and NR2D, but not NR2A. The different NMDA response properties in the SNc and SNr may be caused by differences in receptor modulation and/or trafficking. The vulnerability of SNc DA neurones to cell death is not correlated with NMDA current density or receptor subtypes, but could in part be related to inadequate NMDA receptor desensitization.

  16. Allosteric control in a metalloprotein dramatically alters function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baxter, Elizabeth Leigh; Zuris, John A; Wang, Charles; Vo, Phu Luong T; Axelrod, Herbert L; Cohen, Aina E; Paddock, Mark L; Nechushtai, Rachel; Onuchic, Jose N; Jennings, Patricia A

    2013-01-15

    Metalloproteins (MPs) comprise one-third of all known protein structures. This diverse set of proteins contain a plethora of unique inorganic moieties capable of performing chemistry that would otherwise be impossible using only the amino acids found in nature. Most of the well-studied MPs are generally viewed as being very rigid in structure, and it is widely thought that the properties of the metal centers are primarily determined by the small fraction of amino acids that make up the local environment. Here we examine both theoretically and experimentally whether distal regions can influence the metal center in the diabetes drug target mitoNEET. We demonstrate that a loop (L2) 20 Å away from the metal center exerts allosteric control over the cluster binding domain and regulates multiple properties of the metal center. Mutagenesis of L2 results in significant shifts in the redox potential of the [2Fe-2S] cluster and orders of magnitude effects on the rate of [2Fe-2S] cluster transfer to an apo-acceptor protein. These surprising effects occur in the absence of any structural changes. An examination of the native basin dynamics of the protein using all-atom simulations shows that twisting in L2 controls scissoring in the cluster binding domain and results in perturbations to one of the cluster-coordinating histidines. These allosteric effects are in agreement with previous folding simulations that predicted L2 could communicate with residues surrounding the metal center. Our findings suggest that long-range dynamical changes in the protein backbone can have a significant effect on the functional properties of MPs.

  17. miR-212/132 expression and functions: within and beyond the neuronal compartment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wanet, Anaïs; Tacheny, Aurélie; Arnould, Thierry; Renard, Patricia

    2012-01-01

    During the last two decades, microRNAs (miRNAs) emerged as critical regulators of gene expression. By modulating the expression of numerous target mRNAs mainly at the post-transcriptional level, these small non-coding RNAs have been involved in most, if not all, biological processes as well as in the pathogenesis of a number of diseases. miR-132 and miR-212 are tandem miRNAs whose expression is necessary for the proper development, maturation and function of neurons and whose deregulation is associated with several neurological disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease and tauopathies (neurodegenerative diseases resulting from the pathological aggregation of tau protein in the human brain). Although their involvement in neuronal functions is the most described, evidences point towards a role of these miRNAs in many other biological processes, including inflammation and immune functions. Incidentally, miR-132 was recently classified as a ‘neurimmiR’, a class of miRNAs operating within and between the neural and immune compartments. In this review, we propose an outline of the current knowledge about miR-132 and miR-212 functions in neurons and immune cells, by describing the signalling pathways and transcription factors regulating their expression as well as their putative or demonstrated roles and validated mRNA targets. PMID:22362752

  18. Natural reward experience alters AMPA and NMDA receptor distribution and function in the nucleus accumbens.

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    Kyle K Pitchers

    Full Text Available Natural reward and drugs of abuse converge upon the mesolimbic system which mediates motivation and reward behaviors. Drugs induce neural adaptations in this system, including transcriptional, morphological, and synaptic changes, which contribute to the development and expression of drug-related memories and addiction. Previously, it has been reported that sexual experience in male rats, a natural reward behavior, induces similar neuroplasticity in the mesolimbic system and affects natural reward and drug-related behavior. The current study determined whether sexual experience causes long-lasting changes in mating, or ionotropic glutamate receptor trafficking or function in the nucleus accumbens (NAc, following 3 different reward abstinence periods: 1 day, 1 week, or 1 month after final mating session. Male Sprague Dawley rats mated during 5 consecutive days (sexual experience or remained sexually naïve to serve as controls. Sexually experienced males displayed facilitation of initiation and performance of mating at each time point. Next, intracellular and membrane surface expression of N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA: NR1 subunit and α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methylisoxazole-4-propionate (AMPA: GluA1, GluA2 subunits receptors in the NAc was determined using a bis(sulfosuccinimidylsuberate (BS(3 protein cross-linking assay followed by Western Blot analysis. NR1 expression was increased at 1 day abstinence both at surface and intracellular, but decreased at surface at 1 week of abstinence. GluA2 was increased intracellularly at 1 week and increased at the surface after 1 month of abstinence. Finally, whole-cell patch clamp electrophysiological recordings determined reduced AMPA/NMDA ratio of synaptic currents in NAc shell neurons following stimulation of cortical afferents in sexually experienced males after all reward abstinence periods. Together, these data show that sexual experience causes long-term alterations in glutamate receptor expression and

  19. Prion replication occurs in endogenous adult neural stem cells and alters their neuronal fate: involvement of endogenous neural stem cells in prion diseases.

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    Aroa Relaño-Ginès

    Full Text Available Prion diseases are irreversible progressive neurodegenerative diseases, leading to severe incapacity and death. They are characterized in the brain by prion amyloid deposits, vacuolisation, astrocytosis, neuronal degeneration, and by cognitive, behavioural and physical impairments. There is no treatment for these disorders and stem cell therapy therefore represents an interesting new approach. Gains could not only result from the cell transplantation, but also from the stimulation of endogenous neural stem cells (NSC or by the combination of both approaches. However, the development of such strategies requires a detailed knowledge of the pathology, particularly concerning the status of the adult neurogenesis and endogenous NSC during the development of the disease. During the past decade, several studies have consistently shown that NSC reside in the adult mammalian central nervous system (CNS and that adult neurogenesis occurs throughout the adulthood in the subventricular zone of the lateral ventricle or the Dentate Gyrus of the hippocampus. Adult NSC are believed to constitute a reservoir for neuronal replacement during normal cell turnover or after brain injury. However, the activation of this system does not fully compensate the neuronal loss that occurs during neurodegenerative diseases and could even contribute to the disease progression. We investigated here the status of these cells during the development of prion disorders. We were able to show that NSC accumulate and replicate prions. Importantly, this resulted in the alteration of their neuronal fate which then represents a new pathologic event that might underlie the rapid progression of the disease.

  20. Cardiac Arrest Alters Regional Ubiquitin Levels in Association with the Blood-Brain Barrier Breakdown and Neuronal Damages in the Porcine Brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Hari S; Patnaik, Ranjana; Sharma, Aruna; Lafuente, José Vicente; Miclescu, Adriana; Wiklund, Lars

    2015-10-01

    The possibility that ubiquitin expression is altered in cardiac arrest-associated neuropathology was examined in a porcine model using immunohistochemical and biochemical methods. Our observations show that cardiac arrest induces progressive increase in ubiquitin expression in the cortex and hippocampus in a selective and specific manner as compared to corresponding control brains using enzyme-linked immunoassay technique (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA)). Furthermore, immunohistochemical studies showed ubiquitin expression in the neurons exhibiting immunoreaction in the cytoplasm and karyoplasm of distorted or damaged cells. Separate Nissl and ubiquitin staining showed damaged and distorted neurons and in the same cortical region ubiquitin expression indicating that ubiquitin expression after cardiac arrest represents dying neurons. The finding that methylene blue treatment markedly induced neuroprotection following identical cardiac arrest and reduced ubiquitin expression strengthens this view. Taken together, our observations are the first to show that cardiac arrest enhanced ubiquitin expression in the brain that is related to the magnitude of neuronal injury and the finding that methylene blue reduced ubiquitin expression points to its role in cell damage, not reported earlier.

  1. Altered glutamate reuptake in relapsing-remitting and secondary progressive multiple sclerosis cortex: correlation with microglia infiltration, demyelination, and neuronal and synaptic damage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vercellino, Marco; Merola, Aristide; Piacentino, Chiara; Votta, Barbara; Capello, Elisabetta; Mancardi, Giovanni Luigi; Mutani, Roberto; Giordana, Maria Teresa; Cavalla, Paola

    2007-08-01

    Cortical involvement in multiple sclerosis (MS) is emerging as an important determinant of disease progression. The mechanisms responsible for MS cortical pathology are not fully characterized. The objective of this study was to assess the role of excitotoxicity in MS cortex, evaluating excitatory amino acid transporter (EAAT) expression and its relationship with demyelination, inflammation, gliosis, and neuronal and synaptic pathology. EAATs are essential in maintaining low extracellular glutamate concentrations and preventing excitotoxicity. Ten MS brains (3 relapsing-remitting MS cases and 7 secondary progressive MS cases) were evaluated by immunohistochemistry for myelin basic protein, CD68, HLA-DR, EAAT1, EAAT2, glial fibrillary acidic protein, phosphorylated c-Jun N-terminal kinase (pJNK), synaptophysin, and neurofilaments. Cortical lesions were frequently observed in MS brains in variable numbers and extensions. In cortical lesions, activated microglia infiltration correlated with focal loss of EAAT1, EAAT2, and synaptophysin immunostaining, and with neuronal immunostaining for pJNK, a protein involved in response to excitotoxic injury. No reduction of EAATs or synaptophysin immunostaining was observed in demyelinated cortex in the absence of activated microglia. Alterations of the mechanisms of glutamate reuptake are found in cortical MS lesions in the presence of activated microglia and are associated with signs of neuronal and synaptic damage suggestive of excitotoxicity. Excitotoxicity may be involved in the pathogenesis of demyelination and of neuronal and synaptic damage in MS cortex.

  2. Neurological function following intra-neural injection of fluorescent neuronal tracers in rats

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Wen Hu; Dan Liu; Yanping Zhang; Zhongyi Shen; Tianwen Gu; Xiaosong Gu; Jianhui Gu

    2013-01-01

    Fluorescent neuronal tracers should not be toxic to the nervous system when used in long-term labeling. Previous studies have addressed tracer toxicity, but whether tracers injected into an intact nerve result in functional impairment remains to be elucidated. In the present study, we examined the functions of motor, sensory and autonomic nerves following the application of 5% Fluoro-Gold, 4% True Blue and 10% Fluoro-Ruby (5 μL) to rat tibial nerves via pressure injection. A set of evaluation methods including walking track analysis, plantar test and laser Doppler perfusion imaging was used to determine the action of the fluorescent neuronal tracers. Additionally, nerve pathology and ratio of muscle wet weight were also observed. Results showed that injection of Fluoro-Gold significantly resulted in loss of motor nerve function, lower plantar sensibility, increasing blood flow volume and higher neurogenic vasodilatation. Myelinated nerve fiber degeneration, unclear boundaries in nerve fibers and high retrograde labeling efficacy were observed in the Fluoro-Gold group. The True Blue group also showed obvious neurogenic vasodilatation, but less severe loss of motor function and degeneration, and fewer labeled motor neurons were found compared with the Fluoro-Gold group. No anomalies of motor and sensory nerve function and no myelinated nerve fiber degeneration were observed in the Fluoro-Ruby group. Experimental findings indicate that Fluoro-Gold tracing could lead to significant functional impairment of motor, sensory and autonomic nerves, while functional impairment was less severe following True Blue tracing. Fluoro-Ruby injection appears to have no effect on neurological function.

  3. Vertically Aligned Carbon Nanofiber as Nano-Neuron Interface for Monitoring Neural Function

    OpenAIRE

    Yu, Zhe; McKnight, Timothy E.; Ericson, M. Nance; Melechko, Anatoli V.; Simpson, Michael L.; Morrison, Barclay

    2012-01-01

    Neural chips, which are capable of simultaneous, multi-site neural recording and stimulation, have been used to detect and modulate neural activity for almost 30 years. As a neural interface, neural chips provide dynamic functional information for neural decoding and neural control. By improving sensitivity and spatial resolution, nano-scale electrodes may revolutionize neural detection and modulation at cellular and molecular levels as nano-neuron interfaces. We developed a carbon-nanofiber ...

  4. Computational Analysis of Axonal Transport: A Novel Assessment of Neurotoxicity, Neuronal Development and Functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Toshiyuki Gotoh

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Axonal transport plays a crucial role in neuronal morphogenesis, survival and function. Despite its importance, however, the molecular mechanisms of axonal transport remain mostly unknown because a simple and quantitative assay system for monitoring this cellular process has been lacking. In order to better characterize the mechanisms involved in axonal transport, we formulate a novel computer-assisted monitoring system of axonal transport. Potential uses of this system and implications for future studies will be discussed.

  5. Proliferative reactive gliosis is compatible with glial metabolic support and neuronal function

    OpenAIRE

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Background The response of mammalian glial cells to chronic degeneration and trauma is hypothesized to be incompatible with support of neuronal function in the central nervous system (CNS) and retina. To test this hypothesis, we developed an inducible model of proliferative reactive gliosis in the absence of degenerative stimuli by genetically inactivating the cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor p27Kip1 (p27 or Cdkn1b) in the adult mouse and determined the outcome on retinal structure ...

  6. Early exposure to bisphenol A alters neuron and glia number in the rat prefrontal cortex of adult males, but not females.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sadowski, R N; Wise, L M; Park, P Y; Schantz, S L; Juraska, J M

    2014-10-24

    Previous work has shown that exposure to bisphenol A (BPA) during early development can alter sexual differentiation of the brain in rodents, although few studies have examined effects on areas of the brain associated with cognition. The current study examined if developmental BPA exposure alters the total number of neurons and glia in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) in adulthood. Pregnant Long-Evans rats were orally exposed to 0, 4, 40, or 400-μg/kg BPA in corn oil throughout pregnancy. From postnatal days 1 to 9, pups were given daily oral doses of oil or BPA, at doses corresponding to those given during gestation. Brains were examined in adulthood, and the volume of layers 2/3 and layers 5/6 of the mPFC was parcellated. The density of neurons and glia in these layers was quantified stereologically with the optical disector, and density was multiplied by volume for each animal. Males exposed to 400-μg/kg BPA were found to have increased numbers of neurons and glia in layers 5/6. Although there were no significant effects of BPA in layers 2/3, the pattern of increased neuron number in males exposed to 400-μg/kg BPA was similar to that seen in layers 5/6. No effects of BPA were seen in females or in males exposed to the other doses of BPA. This study indicates that males are more susceptible to the long-lasting effects of BPA on anatomy of the mPFC, an area implicated in neurological disorders.

  7. Urethane anesthesia depresses activities of thalamocortical neurons and alters its response to nociception in terms of dual firing modes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yeowool eHuh

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Anesthetics are often used to characterize the activity of single neurons in-vivo for its advantages such as reduced noise level and convenience in noxious stimulations. Of the anesthetics, urethane had been widely used in some thalamic studies under the assumption that sensory signals are still relayed to the thalamus under urethane anesthesia and that thalamic response would therefore reflect the response of the awake state. We tested whether this assumption stands by comparing thalamic activity in terms of tonic and burst firing modes during ‘the awake state’ or under ‘urethane anesthesia’ utilizing the extracellular single unit recording technique. First we have tested how thalamic relay neurons respond to the introduction of urethane and then tested how urethane influences thalamic discharges under formalin-induced nociception. Urethane significantly depressed overall firing rates of thalamic relay neurons, which was sustained despite the delayed increase of burst activity over the 4 hour recording period. Thalamic response to nociception under anesthesia was also similar overall except for the slight and transient increase of burst activity. Overall, results demonstrated that urethane suppresses the activity of thalamic relay neurons and that, despite the slight fluctuation of burst firing, formalin-induced nociception cannot significantly change the firing pattern of thalamic relay neurons that was caused by urethane.

  8. Structural and Functional Alterations in Right Dorsomedial Prefrontal and Left Insular Cortex Co-Localize in Adolescents with Aggressive Behaviour: An ALE Meta-Analysis.

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    Nora Maria Raschle

    Full Text Available Recent neuroimaging work has suggested that aggressive behaviour (AB is associated with structural and functional brain abnormalities in processes subserving emotion processing and regulation. However, most neuroimaging studies on AB to date only contain relatively small sample sizes. To objectively investigate the consistency of previous structural and functional research in adolescent AB, we performed a systematic literature review and two coordinate-based activation likelihood estimation meta-analyses on eight VBM and nine functional neuroimaging studies in a total of 783 participants (408 [224AB/184 controls] and 375 [215 AB/160 controls] for structural and functional analysis respectively. We found 19 structural and eight functional foci of significant alterations in adolescents with AB, mainly located within the emotion processing and regulation network (including orbitofrontal, dorsomedial prefrontal and limbic cortex. A subsequent conjunction analysis revealed that functional and structural alterations co-localize in right dorsomedial prefrontal cortex and left insula. Our results are in line with meta-analytic work as well as structural, functional and connectivity findings to date, all of which make a strong point for the involvement of a network of brain areas responsible for emotion processing and regulation, which is disrupted in AB. Increased knowledge about the behavioural and neuronal underpinnings of AB is crucial for the development of novel and implementation of existing treatment strategies. Longitudinal research studies will have to show whether the observed alterations are a result or primary cause of the phenotypic characteristics in AB.

  9. Structural and Functional Alterations in Right Dorsomedial Prefrontal and Left Insular Cortex Co-Localize in Adolescents with Aggressive Behaviour: An ALE Meta-Analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raschle, Nora Maria; Menks, Willeke Martine; Fehlbaum, Lynn Valérie; Tshomba, Ebongo; Stadler, Christina

    2015-01-01

    Recent neuroimaging work has suggested that aggressive behaviour (AB) is associated with structural and functional brain abnormalities in processes subserving emotion processing and regulation. However, most neuroimaging studies on AB to date only contain relatively small sample sizes. To objectively investigate the consistency of previous structural and functional research in adolescent AB, we performed a systematic literature review and two coordinate-based activation likelihood estimation meta-analyses on eight VBM and nine functional neuroimaging studies in a total of 783 participants (408 [224AB/184 controls] and 375 [215 AB/160 controls] for structural and functional analysis respectively). We found 19 structural and eight functional foci of significant alterations in adolescents with AB, mainly located within the emotion processing and regulation network (including orbitofrontal, dorsomedial prefrontal and limbic cortex). A subsequent conjunction analysis revealed that functional and structural alterations co-localize in right dorsomedial prefrontal cortex and left insula. Our results are in line with meta-analytic work as well as structural, functional and connectivity findings to date, all of which make a strong point for the involvement of a network of brain areas responsible for emotion processing and regulation, which is disrupted in AB. Increased knowledge about the behavioural and neuronal underpinnings of AB is crucial for the development of novel and implementation of existing treatment strategies. Longitudinal research studies will have to show whether the observed alterations are a result or primary cause of the phenotypic characteristics in AB.

  10. Functional analysis of neuronal microRNAs in Caenorhabditis elegans dauer formation by combinational genetics and Neuronal miRISC immunoprecipitation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Minh T Than

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Identifying the physiological functions of microRNAs (miRNAs is often challenging because miRNAs commonly impact gene expression under specific physiological conditions through complex miRNA::mRNA interaction networks and in coordination with other means of gene regulation, such as transcriptional regulation and protein degradation. Such complexity creates difficulties in dissecting miRNA functions through traditional genetic methods using individual miRNA mutations. To investigate the physiological functions of miRNAs in neurons, we combined a genetic "enhancer" approach complemented by biochemical analysis of neuronal miRNA-induced silencing complexes (miRISCs in C. elegans. Total miRNA function can be compromised by mutating one of the two GW182 proteins (AIN-1, an important component of miRISC. We found that combining an ain-1 mutation with a mutation in unc-3, a neuronal transcription factor, resulted in an inappropriate entrance into the stress-induced, alternative larval stage known as dauer, indicating a role of miRNAs in preventing aberrant dauer formation. Analysis of this genetic interaction suggests that neuronal miRNAs perform such a role partly by regulating endogenous cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP signaling, potentially influencing two other dauer-regulating pathways. Through tissue-specific immunoprecipitations of miRISC, we identified miRNAs and their likely target mRNAs within neuronal tissue. We verified the biological relevance of several of these miRNAs and found that many miRNAs likely regulate dauer formation through multiple dauer-related targets. Further analysis of target mRNAs suggests potential miRNA involvement in various neuronal processes, but the importance of these miRNA::mRNA interactions remains unclear. Finally, we found that neuronal genes may be more highly regulated by miRNAs than intestinal genes. Overall, our study identifies miRNAs and their targets, and a physiological function of these miRNAs in

  11. Alterations in dopamine system function across the estrous cycle of the MAM rodent model of schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perez, Stephanie M; Chen, Li; Lodge, Daniel J

    2014-09-01

    Clinical studies have reported differences in the incidence and severity of schizophrenia symptoms between male and female schizophrenia patients. Unfortunately, the cause of these differences is not currently known due, in part, to the fact that preclinical studies largely focus on male subjects. Dopamine neuron activity has been previously demonstrated to change across the estrous cycle, and may therefore be of relevance, as aberrant dopamine signaling is thought to underlie the positive symptoms of schizophrenia. Here we examine dopamine neuron activity across the estrous cycle in the MAM rodent model of schizophrenia. We demonstrate that the elevation in dopamine neuron activity, consistently observed in male MAM-treated rats, is most prominent during estrus and attenuated in met-estrus. Furthermore, this appears to be mediated, in part, by progesterone in the ventral hippocampus, as increases in dopamine neuron population activity (observed in estrus) were normalized by the intra-hippocampal administration of the progesterone receptor antagonist, mifepristone (but not the estrogen receptor antagonists, fulvestrant). Taken together, these data suggest that changes in dopamine system function occur across the estrous cycle in MAM-treated rats and may contribute to the differences in symptomatology between male and female schizophrenia patients.

  12. Increased actin polymerization and stabilization interferes with neuronal function and survival in the AMPKγ mutant Loechrig.

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    Mandy Cook

    Full Text Available loechrig (loe mutant flies are characterized by progressive neuronal degeneration, behavioral deficits, and early death. The mutation is due to a P-element insertion in the gene for the γ-subunit of the trimeric AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK complex, whereby the insertion affects only one of several alternative transcripts encoding a unique neuronal isoform. AMPK is a cellular energy sensor that regulates a plethora of signaling pathways, including cholesterol and isoprenoid synthesis via its downstream target hydroxy-methylglutaryl (HMG-CoA reductase. We recently showed that loe interferes with isoprenoid synthesis and increases the prenylation and thereby activation of RhoA. During development, RhoA plays an important role in neuronal outgrowth by activating a signaling cascade that regulates actin dynamics. Here we show that the effect of loe/AMPKγ on RhoA prenylation leads to a hyperactivation of this signaling pathway, causing increased phosphorylation of the actin depolymerizating factor cofilin and accumulation of filamentous actin. Furthermore, our results show that the resulting cytoskeletal changes in loe interfere with neuronal growth and disrupt axonal integrity. Surprisingly, these phenotypes were enhanced by expressing the Slingshot (SSH phosphatase, which during development promotes actin depolymerization by dephosphorylating cofilin. However, our studies suggest that in the adult SSH promotes actin polymerization, supporting in vitro studies using human SSH1 that suggested that SSH can also stabilize and bundle filamentous actin. Together with the observed increase in SSH levels in the loe mutant, our experiments suggest that in mature neurons SSH may function as a stabilization factor for filamentous actin instead of promoting actin depolymerization.

  13. Exercise Training after Spinal Cord Injury Selectively Alters Synaptic Properties in Neurons in Adult Mouse Spinal Cord

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flynn, Jamie R.; Dunn, Lynda R.; Galea, Mary P.; Callister, Robin; Rank, Michelle M.

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Following spinal cord injury (SCI), anatomical changes such as axonal sprouting occur within weeks in the vicinity of the injury. Exercise training enhances axon sprouting; however, the exact mechanisms that mediate exercised-induced plasticity are unknown. We studied the effects of exercise training after SCI on the intrinsic and synaptic properties of spinal neurons in the immediate vicinity (<2 segments) of the SCI. Male mice (C57BL/6, 9–10 weeks old) received a spinal hemisection (T10) and after 1 week of recovery, they were randomized to trained (treadmill exercise for 3 weeks) and untrained (no exercise) groups. After 3 weeks, mice were killed and horizontal spinal cord slices (T6–L1, 250 μm thick) were prepared for visually guided whole cell patch clamp recording. Intrinsic properties, including resting membrane potential, input resistance, rheobase current, action potential (AP) threshold and after-hyperpolarization (AHP) amplitude were similar in neurons from trained and untrained mice (n=67 and 70 neurons, respectively). Neurons could be grouped into four categories based on their AP discharge during depolarizing current injection; the proportions of tonic firing, initial bursting, single spiking, and delayed firing neurons were similar in trained and untrained mice. The properties of spontaneous excitatory synaptic currents (sEPSCs) did not differ in trained and untrained animals. In contrast, evoked excitatory synaptic currents recorded after dorsal column stimulation were markedly increased in trained animals (peak amplitude 78.9±17.5 vs. 42.2±6.8 pA; charge 1054±376 vs. 348±75 pA·ms). These data suggest that 3 weeks of treadmill exercise does not affect the intrinsic properties of spinal neurons after SCI; however, excitatory synaptic drive from dorsal column pathways, such as the corticospinal tract, is enhanced. PMID:23320512

  14. Alterations to dendritic spine morphology, but not dendrite patterning, of cortical projection neurons in Tc1 and Ts1Rhr mouse models of Down syndrome.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matilda A Haas

    Full Text Available Down Syndrome (DS is a highly prevalent developmental disorder, affecting 1/700 births. Intellectual disability, which affects learning and memory, is present in all cases and is reflected by below average IQ. We sought to determine whether defective morphology and connectivity in neurons of the cerebral cortex may underlie the cognitive deficits that have been described in two mouse models of DS, the Tc1 and Ts1Rhr mouse lines. We utilised in utero electroporation to label a cohort of future upper layer projection neurons in the cerebral cortex of developing mouse embryos with GFP, and then examined neuronal positioning and morphology in early adulthood, which revealed no alterations in cortical layer position or morphology in either Tc1 or Ts1Rhr mouse cortex. The number of dendrites, as well as dendrite length and branching was normal in both DS models, compared with wildtype controls. The sites of projection neuron synaptic inputs, dendritic spines, were analysed in Tc1 and Ts1Rhr cortex at three weeks and three months after birth, and significant changes in spine morphology were observed in both mouse lines. Ts1Rhr mice had significantly fewer thin spines at three weeks of age. At three months of age Tc1 mice had significantly fewer mushroom spines--the morphology associated with established synaptic inputs and learning and memory. The decrease in mushroom spines was accompanied by a significant increase in the number of stubby spines. This data suggests that dendritic spine abnormalities may be a more important contributor to cognitive deficits in DS models, rather than overall neuronal architecture defects.

  15. Alteration and reorganization of functional networks: a new perspective in brain injury study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nazareth P. Castellanos

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Plasticity is the mechanism underlying brain’s potential capability to compensate injury. Recently several studies have shown that functional connections among brain areas are severely altered by brain injury and plasticity leading to a reorganization of the networks. This new approach studies the impact of brain injury by means of alteration of functional interactions. The concept of functional connectivity refers to the statistical interdependencies between physiological time series simultaneously recorded in various brain areas and it could be an essential tool for brain function studies, being its deviation from healthy reference an indicator for damage. In this article, we review studies investigating functional connectivity changes after brain injury and subsequent recovery, providing an accessible introduction to common mathematical methods to infer functional connectivity, exploring their capabilities, future perspectives and clinical uses in brain injury studies.

  16. Functional integration of grafted neural stem cell-derived dopaminergic neurons monitored by optogenetics in an in vitro Parkinson model.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Tønnesen

    Full Text Available Intrastriatal grafts of stem cell-derived dopamine (DA neurons induce behavioral recovery in animal models of Parkinson's disease (PD, but how they functionally integrate in host neural circuitries is poorly understood. Here, Wnt5a-overexpressing neural stem cells derived from embryonic ventral mesencephalon of tyrosine hydroxylase-GFP transgenic mice were expanded as neurospheres and transplanted into organotypic cultures of wild type mouse striatum. Differentiated GFP-labeled DA neurons in the grafts exhibited mature neuronal properties, including spontaneous firing of action potentials, presence of post-synaptic currents, and functional expression of DA D₂ autoreceptors. These properties resembled those recorded from identical cells in acute slices of intrastriatal grafts in the 6-hydroxy-DA-induced mouse PD model and from DA neurons in intact substantia nigra. Optogenetic activation or inhibition of grafted cells and host neurons using channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2 and halorhodopsin (NpHR, respectively, revealed complex, bi-directional synaptic interactions between grafted cells and host neurons and extensive synaptic connectivity within the graft. Our data demonstrate for the first time using optogenetics that ectopically grafted stem cell-derived DA neurons become functionally integrated in the DA-denervated striatum. Further optogenetic dissection of the synaptic wiring between grafted and host neurons will be crucial to clarify the cellular and synaptic mechanisms underlying behavioral recovery as well as adverse effects following stem cell-based DA cell replacement strategies in PD.

  17. Functional integration of grafted neural stem cell-derived dopaminergic neurons monitored by optogenetics in an in vitro Parkinson model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tønnesen, Jan; Parish, Clare L; Sørensen, Andreas T; Andersson, Angelica; Lundberg, Cecilia; Deisseroth, Karl; Arenas, Ernest; Lindvall, Olle; Kokaia, Merab

    2011-03-04

    Intrastriatal grafts of stem cell-derived dopamine (DA) neurons induce behavioral recovery in animal models of Parkinson's disease (PD), but how they functionally integrate in host neural circuitries is poorly understood. Here, Wnt5a-overexpressing neural stem cells derived from embryonic ventral mesencephalon of tyrosine hydroxylase-GFP transgenic mice were expanded as neurospheres and transplanted into organotypic cultures of wild type mouse striatum. Differentiated GFP-labeled DA neurons in the grafts exhibited mature neuronal properties, including spontaneous firing of action potentials, presence of post-synaptic currents, and functional expression of DA D₂ autoreceptors. These properties resembled those recorded from identical cells in acute slices of intrastriatal grafts in the 6-hydroxy-DA-induced mouse PD model and from DA neurons in intact substantia nigra. Optogenetic activation or inhibition of grafted cells and host neurons using channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2) and halorhodopsin (NpHR), respectively, revealed complex, bi-directional synaptic interactions between grafted cells and host neurons and extensive synaptic connectivity within the graft. Our data demonstrate for the first time using optogenetics that ectopically grafted stem cell-derived DA neurons become functionally integrated in the DA-denervated striatum. Further optogenetic dissection of the synaptic wiring between grafted and host neurons will be crucial to clarify the cellular and synaptic mechanisms underlying behavioral recovery as well as adverse effects following stem cell-based DA cell replacement strategies in PD.

  18. Role of peripheral CRF signalling pathways in stress-related alterations of gut motility and mucosal function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taché, Y; Perdue, M H

    2004-04-01

    Central corticotrophin releasing-factor (CRF) signalling pathways are involved in the endocrine, behavioural and visceral responses to stress. Recent studies indicate that peripheral CRF-related mechanisms also contribute to stress-induced changes in gut motility and intestinal mucosal function. Peripheral injection of CRF or urocortin inhibits gastric emptying and motility through interaction with CRF2 receptors and stimulates colonic transit, motility, Fos expression in myenteric neurones and defecation through activation of CRF1 receptors. With regard to intestinal epithelial cell function, intraperitoneal CRF increases ion secretion and mucosal permeability to macromolecules. The motility and mucosal changes induced by peripheral CRF mimic those induced by acute stress. In addition, CRF receptor antagonists given peripherally prevent acute restraint and water avoidance stress-induced delayed gastric emptying, stimulation of colonic motor function and mucosal permeability. Similarly, early trauma enhanced intestinal mucosal dysfunction to an acute stressor in adult rats and the response is prevented by peripheral injection of CRF antagonist. Chronic psychological stress results in reduced host defence and initiates intestinal inflammation through mast cell-dependent mechanisms. These findings provide convergent evidence that activation of peripheral CRF receptors and mast cells are important mechanisms involved in stress-related alterations of gut physiology.

  19. Lack of functional specialization of neurons in the mouse primary visual cortex that have expressed calretinin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela eCamillo

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Calretinin is a calcium-binding protein often used as a marker for a subset of inhibitory interneurons in the mammalian neocortex. We studied the labeled cells in offspring from a cross of a Cre-dependent reporter line with the CR-ires-Cre mice, which express Cre-recombinase in the same pattern as calretinin. We found that in the mature visual cortex, only a minority of the cells that have expressed calretinin and Cre-recombinase during their lifetime is GABAergic and only about 20% are immunoreactive for calretinin. The reason behind this is that calretinin is transiently expressed in many cortical pyramidal neurons during development. To determine whether neurons that express or have expressed calretinin share any distinct functional characteristics, we recorded their visual response properties using GCaMP6s calcium imaging. The average orientation selectivity, size tuning, and temporal and spatial frequency tuning of this group of cells, however, match the response profile of the general neuronal population, revealing the lack of functional specialization for the features studied.

  20. An ultra-low-voltage electronic implementation of inertial neuron model with nonmonotonous Liao's activation function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kant, Nasir Ali; Dar, Mohamad Rafiq; Khanday, Farooq Ahmad

    2015-01-01

    The output of every neuron in neural network is specified by the employed activation function (AF) and therefore forms the heart of neural networks. As far as the design of artificial neural networks (ANNs) is concerned, hardware approach is preferred over software one because it promises the full utilization of the application potential of ANNs. Therefore, besides some arithmetic blocks, designing AF in hardware is the most important for designing ANN. While attempting to design the AF in hardware, the designs should be compatible with the modern Very Large Scale Integration (VLSI) design techniques. In this regard, the implemented designs should: only be in Metal Oxide Semiconductor (MOS) technology in order to be compatible with the digital designs, provide electronic tunability feature, and be able to operate at ultra-low voltage. Companding is one of the promising circuit design techniques for achieving these goals. In this paper, 0.5 V design of Liao's AF using sinh-domain technique is introduced. Furthermore, the function is tested by implementing inertial neuron model. The performance of the AF and inertial neuron model have been evaluated through simulation results, using the PSPICE software with the MOS transistor models provided by the 0.18-μm Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturer Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor (TSM CMOS) process.

  1. Ultrasoft Alginate Hydrogels Support Long-Term Three-Dimensional Functional Neuronal Networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palazzolo, Gemma; Broguiere, Nicolas; Cenciarelli, Orlando; Dermutz, Harald; Zenobi-Wong, Marcy

    2015-08-01

    Neuron development and function are exquisitely sensitive to the mechanical properties of their surroundings. Three-dimensional (3D) cultures are therefore being explored as they better mimic the features of the native extracellular matrix. Limitations of existing 3D culture models include poorly defined composition, rapid degradation, and suboptimal biocompatibility. Here we show that ionically cross-linked ultrasoft hydrogels made from unmodified alginate can potently promote neuritogenesis. Alginate hydrogels were characterized mechanically and a remarkable range of stiffness (10-4000 Pa) could be produced by varying the macromer content (0.1-0.4% w/v) and CaCl2 concentration. Dissociated rat embryonic cortical neurons encapsulated within the softest of the hydrogels (0.1% w/v, 10 mM CaCl2) showed excellent viability, extensive formation of axons and dendrites, and long-term activity as determined by calcium imaging. In conclusion, alginate is an off-the-shelf, easy to handle, and inexpensive material, which can be used to make ultrasoft hydrogels for the formation of stable and functional 3D neuronal networks. This 3D culture system could have important applications in neuropharmacology, toxicology, and regenerative medicine.

  2. Vertically aligned carbon nanofiber as nano-neuron interface for monitoring neural function

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ericson, Milton Nance [ORNL; McKnight, Timothy E [ORNL; Melechko, Anatoli Vasilievich [ORNL; Simpson, Michael L [ORNL; Morrison, Barclay [ORNL; Yu, Zhe [Columbia University

    2012-01-01

    Neural chips, which are capable of simultaneous, multi-site neural recording and stimulation, have been used to detect and modulate neural activity for almost 30 years. As a neural interface, neural chips provide dynamic functional information for neural decoding and neural control. By improving sensitivity and spatial resolution, nano-scale electrodes may revolutionize neural detection and modulation at cellular and molecular levels as nano-neuron interfaces. We developed a carbon-nanofiber neural chip with lithographically defined arrays of vertically aligned carbon nanofiber electrodes and demonstrated its capability of both stimulating and monitoring electrophysiological signals from brain tissues in vitro and monitoring dynamic information of neuroplasticity. This novel nano-neuron interface can potentially serve as a precise, informative, biocompatible, and dual-mode neural interface for monitoring of both neuroelectrical and neurochemical activity at the single cell level and even inside the cell.

  3. Function of PTEN during the formation and maintenance of neuronal circuits in the brain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Diepen, Michiel T; Eickholt, Britta J

    2008-01-01

    PTEN (phosphatase and tensin homologue deleted on chromosome 10) is a tumor suppressor that can inhibit proliferation and migration and controls apoptosis in a number of cell types, mainly through inhibition of the phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) signaling pathway. Patients carrying inactivating mutations of PTEN show a prevalence to develop tumors that can coincide with neurological defects such as mental retardation, ataxia and seizures. A number of in vitro and in vivo studies were instrumental in uncovering a direct correlation between deregulated PI3K/PTEN signaling and changes in neuronal morphogenesis, which is likely to have profound bearings upon the pathogenesis of neurological symptoms. This review outlines recent work on the function of PTEN during vertebrate brain development and the current understanding of the signaling pathways downstream of PTEN that control neuronal connectivity in the brain.

  4. TDP-43 Loss-of-Function Causes Neuronal Loss Due to Defective Steroid Receptor-Mediated Gene Program Switching in Drosophila

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lies Vanden Broeck

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available TDP-43 proteinopathy is strongly implicated in the pathogenesis of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and related neurodegenerative disorders. Whether TDP-43 neurotoxicity is caused by a novel toxic gain-of-function mechanism of the aggregates or by a loss of its normal function is unknown. We increased and decreased expression of TDP-43 (dTDP-43 in Drosophila. Although upregulation of dTDP-43 induced neuronal ubiquitin and dTDP-43-positive inclusions, both up- and downregulated dTDP-43 resulted in selective apoptosis of bursicon neurons and highly similar transcriptome alterations at the pupal-adult transition. Gene network analysis and genetic validation showed that both up- and downregulated dTDP-43 directly and dramatically increased the expression of the neuronal microtubule-associated protein Map205, resulting in cytoplasmic accumulations of the ecdysteroid receptor (EcR and a failure to switch EcR-dependent gene programs from a pupal to adult pattern. We propose that dTDP-43 neurotoxicity is caused by a loss of its normal function.

  5. Novel quantitative methods for characterization of chemical induced functional alteration in developing neuronal cultures

    Science.gov (United States)

    ABSTRACT BODY: Thousands of chemicals lack adequate testing for adverse effects on nervous system development, stimulating research into alternative methods to screen chemicals for potential developmental neurotoxicity. Microelectrode arrays (MEA) collect action potential spiking...

  6. Functional expression of P2X7 receptors in non-neuronal cells of rat dorsal root ganglia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Xu-Feng; Han, Ping; Faltynek, Connie R; Jarvis, Michael F; Shieh, Char-Chang

    2005-08-02

    The P2X7 receptor is an ATP-sensitive ligand-gated cation channel, expressed predominantly in cells with immune origin. Recent studies have demonstrated that P2X7 may play an important role in pain signaling. In the present study, the expression of P2X7 receptors in non-neuronal cells and neurons isolated from dorsal root ganglia was characterized using patch clamp, pharmacological and confocal microscopy approaches. In small diameter DRG neurons, 100 microM 2', 3'-O-(4-benzoylbenzoyl)-ATP (BzATP) evoked an inward current, which was inhibited completely by 1 microM A-317491, a potent and selective P2X3 receptor antagonist. In contrast, BzATP evoked concentration-dependent increases in inward currents in non-neuronal DRG cells with an EC50 value of 26 +/- 0.14 microM, which were resistant to the blockade by A-317491. The activity to evoke cationic currents by P2X receptor agonists in non-neuronal cells showed a rank order of BzATP > ATP > alpha,beta-meATP. Pyridoxal-phosphate-6-azophenyl-,2',4'-disulphonic acid (PPADS) and Mg2+ produced concentration-dependent inhibition of BzATP-evoked currents in non-neuronal cells. Confocal microscopy revealed positive immunoreactivity of anti-P2X7 receptor antibodies on non-neuronal cells. No anti-P2X7 immunoreactivity was observed on DRG neurons. Further electrophysiological studies showed that prolonged agonist activation of P2X7 receptors in non-neuronal cells did not lead to cytolytic pore formation. Taken together, the present study demonstrated functional expression of P2X7 receptors in non-neuronal but not in small diameter neurons from rat DRG. Modulation of P2X7 receptors in non-neuronal cells might have impact on peripheral sensory transduction under normal and pathological states.

  7. Developmental suppression of schizophrenia-associated miR-137 alters sensorimotor function in zebrafish

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giacomotto, J; Carroll, A P; Rinkwitz, S; Mowry, B; Cairns, M J; Becker, T S

    2016-01-01

    The neurodevelopmentally regulated microRNA miR-137 was strongly implicated as risk locus for schizophrenia in the most recent genome wide association study coordinated by the Psychiatric Genome Consortium (PGC). This molecule is highly conserved in vertebrates enabling the investigation of its function in the developing zebrafish. We utilized this model system to achieve overexpression and suppression of miR-137, both transiently and stably through transgenesis. While miR-137 overexpression was not associated with an observable specific phenotype, downregulation by antisense morpholino and/or transgenic expression of miR-sponge RNA induced significant impairment of both embryonic and larval touch-sensitivity without compromising overall anatomical development. We observed miR-137 expression and activity in sensory neurons including Rohon–Beard neurons and dorsal root ganglia, two neuronal cell types that confer touch-sensitivity in normal zebrafish, suggesting a role of these cell types in the observed phenotype. The lack of obvious anatomical or histological pathology in these cells, however, suggested that subtle axonal network defects or a change in synaptic function and neural connectivity might be responsible for the behavioral phenotype rather than a change in the cellular morphology or neuroanatomy. PMID:27219344

  8. Loss of β-glucocerebrosidase activity does not affect alpha-synuclein levels or lysosomal function in neuronal cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dermentzaki, Georgia; Dimitriou, Evangelia; Xilouri, Maria; Michelakakis, Helen; Stefanis, Leonidas

    2013-01-01

    To date, a plethora of studies have provided evidence favoring an association between Gaucher disease (GD) and Parkinson's disease (PD). GD, the most common lysosomal storage disorder, results from the diminished activity of the lysosomal enzyme β-glucocerebrosidase (GCase), caused by mutations in the β-glucocerebrosidase gene (GBA). Alpha-synuclein (ASYN), a presynaptic protein, has been strongly implicated in PD pathogenesis. ASYN may in part be degraded by the lysosomes and may itself aberrantly impact lysosomal function. Therefore, a putative link between deficient GCase and ASYN, involving lysosomal dysfunction, has been proposed to be responsible for the risk for PD conferred by GBA mutations. In this current work, we aimed to investigate the effects of pharmacological inhibition of GCase on ASYN accumulation/aggregation, as well as on lysosomal function, in differentiated SH-SY5Y cells and in primary neuronal cultures. Following profound inhibition of the enzyme activity, we did not find significant alterations in ASYN levels, or any changes in the clearance or formation of its oligomeric species. We further observed no significant impairment of the lysosomal degradation machinery. These findings suggest that additional interaction pathways together with aberrant GCase and ASYN must govern this complex relation between GD and PD.

  9. Remodelling of spared proprioceptive circuit involving a small number of neurons supports functional recovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hollis, Edmund R; Ishiko, Nao; Pessian, Maysam; Tolentino, Kristine; Lee-Kubli, Corinne A; Calcutt, Nigel A; Zou, Yimin

    2015-01-19

    Studies show that limited functional recovery can be achieved by plasticity and adaptation of the remaining circuitry in partial injuries in the central nervous system, although the new circuits that arise in these contexts have not been clearly identified or characterized. We show here that synaptic contacts from dorsal root ganglions to a small number of dorsal column neurons, a caudal extension of nucleus gracilis, whose connections to the thalamus are spared in a precise cervical level 1 lesion, underwent remodeling over time. These connections support proprioceptive functional recovery in a conditioning lesion paradigm, as silencing or eliminating the remodelled circuit completely abolishes the recovered proprioceptive function of the hindlimb. Furthermore, we show that blocking repulsive Wnt signalling increases axon plasticity and synaptic connections that drive greater functional recovery.

  10. Mirror neuron activation in children with developmental coordination disorder: A functional MRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, Jess E; Licari, Melissa K; Billington, Jac; Chen, Yihui; Aziz-Zadeh, Lisa; Werner, Julie; Winsor, Anne M; Bynevelt, Michael

    2015-12-01

    The aim of this study was to reveal cortical areas that may contribute to the movement difficulties seen in children with Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD). Specifically, we hypothesized that there may be a deficit in the mirror neuron system (MNS), a neural system that responds to both performed and observed actions. Using functional MRI, 14 boys with DCD (x=10.08 years ± 1.31, range=7.83-11.58 years) and 12 typically developing controls (x=10.10 years ± 1.15, range=8.33-12.00 years) were scanned observing, executing and imitating a finger sequencing task using their right hand. Cortical activations of mirror neuron regions, including posterior inferior frontal gyrus (IFG), ventral premotor cortex, anterior inferior parietal lobule and superior temporal sulcus were examined. Children with DCD had decreased cortical activation mirror neuron related regions, including the precentral gyrus and IFG, as well as in the posterior cingulate and precuneus complex when observing the sequencing task. Region of interest analysis revealed lower activation in the pars opercularis, a primary MNS region, during imitation in the DCD group compared to controls. These findings provide some preliminary evidence to support a possible MNS dysfunction in children with DCD.

  11. Erythropoietin Rescues Primary Rat Cortical Neurons by Altering the Nrf2:Bach1 Ratio: Roles of Extracellular Signal-Regulated Kinase 1/2.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Li-Min; Zhang, Dong-Xue; Zhao, Xiao-Chun; Sun, Wenbo

    2017-01-12

    While inhalation anesthetics are indispensable, and generally considered safe and effective, there is growing concern about the selective neurotoxicity of these agents, especially sevoflurane. Erythropoetin (EPO)-induced protection against sevoflurane-induced neuronal death is an effective intervention, but the underlying mechanism is poorly understood. Extracellular signal-related kinases (Erk) 1/2 plays a pivotal role in cell growth and proliferation. Alteration of the nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor (Nrf2)/BTB-to-CNC homology 1 (Bach1) ratio by Erk1/2 ameliorates the oxidative stress which occurs in human macrophages. Primary cortical neuron cultures exposed to sevoflurane were assessed for Nrf2, Bach1, total Erk1/2, and phosphorylated Erk1/2 with the following: 3-(4, 5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2, 5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide; propidium iodide uptake; lactate dehydrogenase; malondialdehyde (MDA); superoxide dismutase (SOD); and Western blot. Sevoflurane exposure increased cell death, injury, and MDA (n = 9, P < 0.05), but decreased cell viability and the Nrf2:Bach1 ratio (n = 9, P < 0.05) and down-regulated SOD (n = 9, P < 0.05), while EPO partially rescued the neurotoxicity induced by sevoflurane (n = 9, P < 0.05). Inhibition of Erk1/2 phosphorylation via PD98059 reversed the protective effect of EPO (n = 9, P < 0.05). Thus, protection of EPO markedly attenuated death of neurons exposed to sevoflurane by altering the Nrf2:Bach1 ratio mediated by phosphorylation and activation of Erk1/2.

  12. Selective destruction of nigrostriatal dopaminergic neurons does not alter [3H]-ryanodine binding in rat striatum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Noël F.

    2000-01-01

    Full Text Available Dopamine nigrostriatal neurons are important for motor control and may contain a particularly dense population of ryanodine receptors involved in the control of dopamine release. To test this hypothesis, we used a classical model of unilateral selective lesion of these neurons in rats based on 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA injection into the substantia nigra. Binding of [3H]-GBR 12935, used as a presynaptic marker since it labels specifically the dopamine uptake complex, was dramatically decreased by 83-100% in striatum homogenates after 6-OHDA lesion. On the contrary, no reduction of [3H]-ryanodine binding was observed. The present data indicate that [3H]-ryanodine binding sites present in rat striatum are not preferentially localized in dopaminergic terminals.

  13. Expression and structural-functional alterations of α-1-acid glycoprotein at the pathological state

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kulinich A. O.

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available The review analyzes up-to-date knowledge on structure and biological functions of α-acid glycoprotein. The special attention is given to alterations of fucosylation, sialylation and branching of orosomucoid at the acute, chronic inflammation and oncotransformations.

  14. Effect of contractile protein alterations on cardiac myofilament function in human heart failure

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Narolska, N.A.

    2006-01-01

    The main objective of this thesis was to elucidate the effect of translational and post-translational alterations in contractile proteins occurring during heart failure on contractile function in human cardiac tissue. Isometric force and ATPase activity measurements were performed in skinned human

  15. Altered Intermittent Rhythmic Delta and Theta Activity in the Electroencephalographies of High Functioning Adult Patients with Autism Spectrum Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Endres, Dominique; Maier, Simon; Feige, Bernd; Posielski, Nicole A.; Nickel, Kathrin; Ebert, Dieter; Riedel, Andreas; Philipsen, Alexandra; Perlov, Evgeniy; Tebartz van Elst, Ludger

    2017-01-01

    Background: Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is often associated with epilepsy. Previous studies have also shown increased rates of electroencephalographic (EEG) alteration in ASD patients without epilepsy. The aim of this study was to compare the rate of intermittent rhythmic delta and theta activity (IRDA/IRTA) events between high-functioning adult patients with ASD and matched healthy controls. Materials and Methods: Routine EEG records of 19 ASD patients and 19 matched controls were screened for IRDA/IRTA using a fully data driven analysis with fixed thresholds. IRDA/IRTA rates before and after hyperventilation (HV) as well as the HV-induced difference in IRDA/IRTA rates (HV difference) were analyzed. For inter-group measures, we used the Wilcoxon rank sum test. Results: Significantly increased HV difference was detected in the ASD group (p = 0.0497). However, the groups showed no difference in IRDA/IRTA rates before HV (p = 0.564) and after HV (p = 0.163). Conclusions: The lack of any group differences regarding IRDA/IRTA before HV might be related to the fact that we only studied non-secondary high-functioning autism in a small sample of epilepsy-free adult patients. A significantly increased HV difference might be regarded as a marker of subtle neuronal network instability possibly causing short-term disturbances via local area network inhibition and long-term effects via epileptic encephalopathy. PMID:28265243

  16. Optically-Induced Neuronal Activity Is Sufficient to Promote Functional Motor Axon Regeneration In Vivo.

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    Patricia J Ward

    Full Text Available Peripheral nerve injuries are common, and functional recovery is very poor. Beyond surgical repair of the nerve, there are currently no treatment options for these patients. In experimental models of nerve injury, interventions (such as exercise and electrical stimulation that increase neuronal activity of the injured neurons effectively enhance axon regeneration. Here, we utilized optogenetics to determine whether increased activity alone is sufficient to promote motor axon regeneration. In thy-1-ChR2/YFP transgenic mice in which a subset of motoneurons express the light-sensitive cation channel, channelrhodopsin (ChR2, we activated axons in the sciatic nerve using blue light immediately prior to transection and surgical repair of the sciatic nerve. At four weeks post-injury, direct muscle EMG responses evoked with both optical and electrical stimuli as well as the ratio of these optical/electrical evoked EMG responses were significantly greater in mice that received optical treatment. Thus, significantly more ChR2+ axons successfully re-innervated the gastrocnemius muscle in mice that received optical treatment. Sections of the gastrocnemius muscles were reacted with antibodies to Synaptic Vesicle Protein 2 (SV2 to quantify the number of re-occupied motor endplates. The number of SV2+ endplates was greater in mice that received optical treatment. The number of retrogradely-labeled motoneurons following intramuscular injection of cholera toxin subunit B (conjugated to Alexa Fluor 555 was greater in mice that received optical treatment. Thus, the acute (1 hour, one-time optical treatment resulted in robust, long-lasting effects compared to untreated animals as well as untreated axons (ChR2-. We conclude that neuronal activation is sufficient to promote motor axon regeneration, and this regenerative effect is specific to the activated neurons.

  17. Altered orbitofrontal sulcogyral patterns in adult males with high-functioning autism spectrum disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watanabe, Hiromi; Nakamura, Motoaki; Ohno, Taisei; Itahashi, Takashi; Tanaka, Eizaburo; Ohta, Haruhisa; Yamada, Takashi; Kanai, Chieko; Iwanami, Akira; Kato, Nobumasa; Hashimoto, Ryuichiro

    2014-04-01

    Functions of the orbitofrontal cortex include diverse social, cognitive and affective processes, many of which are abnormal in autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). Recently, altered orbitofrontal sulcogyral patterns have been revealed in several psychiatric conditions, such as schizophrenia, indicating a possibility that altered orbitofrontal sulcogyral morphology reflects abnormal neurodevelopment. However, the presence of sulcal alterations in ASD remains unexplored. Using structural magnetic resonance imaging, subtypes of the 'H-shaped' sulcus (Type I, II and III, in order of frequency), posterior orbital sulcus (POS) and intermediate orbital sulcus were identified in each hemisphere of adult males with ASD (n = 51) and matched normal controls (n = 55) based on the study by Chiavaras and Petrides. ASD showed a significantly altered distribution of H-shaped sulcal subtypes in both hemispheres, with a significant increase of Type III. A significant alteration in the distribution of sulcal subtypes was also identified in the right hemisphere POS of ASD. Categorical regression analysis revealed that Type I and II expressions predicted a reduced total Autism-Spectrum Quotient score. Furthermore, Type I expression was associated with a reduced 'attention to detail' subscale score. The results demonstrate that altered sulcogyral morphology can be a marker for abnormal neurodevelopment leading to the increased risk of developing autism.

  18. Experimental study on alteration of adrenergic receptors activity in neuronal membranes protein of cerebral cortex following brain trauma in rats

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHANG Xin-wei; XU Ru-xiang; QI Yi-long; CHEN Chang-cai

    2001-01-01

    Objective: To define the course of changes taken by α1 and β adrenergic receptors (AR) activity after traumatic brain injury (TBI) and explore the approach for secondary brain injury (SBI) management. Methods: The neuronal membrane protein of cortex were extracted from the rats subject to traumatic brain injury, and the changes of α1- and β-AR activities in the neuronal membranes were examined by radio ligand binding assay (RLBA). Results: α1- and β-AR activities underwent obvious changes, reaching their peak values at 24 h after TBI. α1-AR binding density (Bmax) reduced by 22.6%while the ligand affinity increased by 66.7%, and for β-AR, however, Bmax increased by 116.9% and the ligand affinity reduced by 50.7%. Their antagonists could counteract the changes ofα1- and β-AR activity. Conclusion: The patterns of changes varies between α1- and β-AR activity after TBI, suggesting their different roles in the neuronal membranes after brain trauma, and timely administration of AR antagonists is potentially beneficial in TBI management.

  19. Morphofunctional alterations in ventral tegmental area dopamine neurons in acute and prolonged opiates withdrawal. A computational perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Enrico, P; Migliore, M; Spiga, S; Mulas, G; Caboni, F; Diana, M

    2016-05-13

    Dopamine (DA) neurons of the ventral tegmental area (VTA) play a key role in the neurobiological basis of goal-directed behaviors and addiction. Morphine (MOR) withdrawal induces acute and long-term changes in the morphology and physiology of VTA DA cells, but the mechanisms underlying these modifications are poorly understood. Because of their predictive value, computational models are a powerful tool in neurobiological research, and are often used to gain further insights and deeper understanding on the molecular and physiological mechanisms underlying the development of various psychiatric disorders. Here we present a biophysical model of a DA VTA neuron based on 3D morphological reconstruction and electrophysiological data, showing how opiates withdrawal-driven morphological and electrophysiological changes could affect the firing rate and discharge pattern. The model findings suggest how and to what extent a change in the balance of GABA/GLU inputs can take into account the experimentally observed hypofunction of VTA DA neurons during acute and prolonged withdrawal, whereas morphological changes may play a role in the increased excitability of VTA DA cell to opiate administration observed during opiate withdrawal.

  20. Altered neuronal firing pattern of the basal ganglia nucleus plays a role in levodopa-induced dyskinesia in patients with Parkinson's disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaoyu eLi

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Background: Levodopa therapy alleviates the symptoms of Parkinson's disease (PD, but long-term treatment often leads to motor complications such as levodopa-induced dyskinesia (LID. Aim: To explore the neuronal activity in the basal ganglia nuclei in patients with PD and LID. Methods: Thirty patients with idiopathic PD (age, 55.1±11.0 years; disease duration, 8.7±5.6 years were enrolled between August 2006 and August 2013 at the Xuanwu Hospital, Capital Medical University, China. Their Hoehn and Yahr scores ranged from 2 to 4 and their UPDRS III scores were 28.5±5.2. Fifteen of them had severe LID (UPDRS IV scores of 6.7±1.6. Microelectrode recording was performed in the globus pallidus internus (GPi and subthalamic nucleus (STN during pallidotomy (n=12 or STN deep brain stimulation (DBS; bilateral, n=12; unilateral, n=6. The firing patterns and frequencies of various cell types were analyzed by assessing single cell interspike intervals (ISIs and the corresponding coefficient of variation (CV. Results: A total of 295 neurons were identified from the GPi (n=12 and STN (n=18. These included 26 (8.8% highly grouped discharge, 30 (10.2% low frequency firing, 78 (26.4% rapid tonic discharge, 103 (34.9% irregular activity, and 58 (19.7% tremor-related activity. There were significant differences between the two groups (P<0.05 for neurons with irregular firing, highly irregular cluster-like firing, and low-frequency firing. Conclusion: Altered neuronal activity was observed in the basal ganglia nucleus of GPi and STN, and may play important roles in the pathophysiology of PD and LID.

  1. Adult Neurogenesis in the Female Mouse Hypothalamus: Estradiol and High-Fat Diet Alter the Generation of Newborn Neurons Expressing Estrogen Receptor α

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    Yang, Jane; Nettles, Sabin A.; Byrnes, Elizabeth M.

    2016-01-01

    Estrogens and leptins act in the hypothalamus to maintain reproduction and energy homeostasis. Neurogenesis in the adult mammalian hypothalamus has been implicated in the regulation of energy homeostasis. Recently, high-fat diet (HFD) and estradiol (E2) have been shown to alter cell proliferation and the number of newborn leptin-responsive neurons in the hypothalamus of adult female mice. The current study tested the hypothesis that new cells expressing estrogen receptor α (ERα) are generated in the arcuate nucleus (ARC) and the ventromedial nucleus of the hypothalamus (VMH) of the adult female mouse, hypothalamic regions that are critical in energy homeostasis. Adult mice were ovariectomized and implanted with capsules containing E2 or oil. Within each hormone group, mice were fed an HFD or standard chow for 6 weeks and treated with BrdU to label new cells. Newborn cells that respond to estrogens were identified in the ARC and VMH, of which a subpopulation was leptin sensitive, indicating that the subpopulation consists of neurons. Moreover, there was an interaction between diet and hormone with an effect on the number of these newborn ERα-expressing neurons that respond to leptin. Regardless of hormone treatment, HFD increased the number of ERα-expressing cells in the ARC and VMH. E2 decreased hypothalamic fibroblast growth factor 10 (Fgf10) gene expression in HFD mice, suggesting a role for Fgf10 in E2 effects on neurogenesis. These findings of newly created estrogen-responsive neurons in the adult brain provide a novel mechanism by which estrogens can act in the hypothalamus to regulate energy homeostasis in females. PMID:27679811

  2. Functional profiles of SCN9A variants in dorsal root ganglion neurons and superior cervical ganglion neurons correlate with autonomic symptoms in small fibre neuropathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Chongyang; Hoeijmakers, Janneke G J; Liu, Shujun; Gerrits, Monique M; te Morsche, Rene H M; Lauria, Giuseppe; Dib-Hajj, Sulayman D; Drenth, Joost P H; Faber, Catharina G; Merkies, Ingemar S J; Waxman, Stephen G

    2012-09-01

    Patients with small fibre neuropathy typically manifest pain in distal extremities and severe autonomic dysfunction. However, occasionally patients present with minimal autonomic symptoms. The basis for this phenotypic difference is not understood. Sodium channel Na(v)1.7, encoded by the SCN9A gene, is preferentially expressed in the peripheral nervous system within sensory dorsal root ganglion and sympathetic ganglion neurons and their small diameter peripheral axons. We recently reported missense substitutions in SCN9A that encode functional Na(v)1.7 variants in 28% of patients with biopsy-confirmed small fibre neuropathy. Two patients with biopsy-confirmed small fibre neuropathy manifested minimal autonomic dysfunction unlike the other six patients in this series, and both of these patients carry the Na(v)1.7/R185H variant, presenting the opportunity to compare variants associated with extreme ends of a spectrum from minimal to severe autonomic dysfunction. Herein, we show by voltage-clamp that R185H variant channels enhance resurgent currents within dorsal root ganglion neurons and show by current-clamp that R185H renders dorsal root ganglion neurons hyperexcitable. We also show that in contrast, R185H variant channels do not produce detectable changes when studied by voltage-clamp within sympathetic neurons of the superior cervical ganglion, and have no effect on the excitability of these cells. As a comparator, we studied the Na(v)1.7 variant I739V, identified in three patients with small fibre neuropathy characterized by severe autonomic dysfunction as well as neuropathic pain, and show that this variant impairs channel slow inactivation within both dorsal root ganglion and superior cervical ganglion neurons, and renders dorsal root ganglion neurons hyperexcitable and superior cervical ganglion neurons hypoexcitable. Thus, we show that R185H, from patients with minimal autonomic dysfunction, does not produce detectable changes in the properties of

  3. Formation and Functions of Alter Personalities in Dissociative Identity Disorder: A Theoretical and Clinical Elaboration

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    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Dissociative identity disorder [DID] is a chronic complex psychiatric condition related to cumulative psychological traumatization in childhood. It is characterized by a marked disturbance of identity due to the presence of distinct personality states and repetitive dissociative amnesias which interfere with the continuity of the affected persons autobiography. These personality states [alter personalities] recurrently take control of or influence the individual undermining one’s sense of self and agency. Although working with alter personalities is the hallmark of psychotherapy in DID, a detailed and specific clinical and theoretical psychopathology of alter personalities do not exist yet. Hence, the present paper addresses the formation and functions of alter personalitiesin DID. The hypotheses, proposals, andassumptions developed in this paper have been derived from experiences inintensive treatment of a very large number of patients with DID over more than two decades. The authors propose that the reconciliation between diverse perspectives about one’s internal world and external reality carried by various personalities is necessary for successful treatment of DID. The hallmark of dealing with alter and host personalities constitutes of the elimination of misperceptions of themabout each other personality state and even about themselves.This requires an analysis of the missions and functions of alter personalities which are usually different thanthe perceived conceptualizations.This recognition usually increases the therapeutic alliance and even consent between the therapist, and alter and host personalities and decreases the duration of treatment. The present paper is a preliminary one on this subject and may serve as a basis both for further theoretical elaborations as well as for development of hypotheses in empirical research devoted to understanding operations of human mind when exposed to stress in particular as well as the

  4. TRPA1 is functionally expressed primarily by IB4-binding, non-peptidergic mouse and rat sensory neurons.

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    Marie E Barabas

    Full Text Available Subpopulations of somatosensory neurons are characterized by functional properties and expression of receptor proteins and surface markers. CGRP expression and IB4-binding are commonly used to define peptidergic and non-peptidergic subpopulations. TRPA1 is a polymodal, plasma membrane ion channel that contributes to mechanical and cold hypersensitivity during tissue injury, making it a key target for pain therapeutics. Some studies have shown that TRPA1 is predominantly expressed by peptidergic sensory neurons, but others indicate that TRPA1 is expressed extensively within non-peptidergic, IB4-binding neurons. We used FURA-2 calcium imaging to define the functional distribution of TRPA1 among peptidergic and non-peptidergic adult mouse (C57BL/6J DRG neurons. Approximately 80% of all small-diameter (<27 µm neurons from lumbar 1-6 DRGs that responded to TRPA1 agonists allyl isothiocyanate (AITC; 79% or cinnamaldehyde (84% were IB4-positive. Retrograde labeling via plantar hind paw injection of WGA-Alexafluor594 showed similarly that most (81% cutaneous neurons responding to TRPA1 agonists were IB4-positive. Additionally, we cultured DRG neurons from a novel CGRP-GFP mouse where GFP expression is driven by the CGRPα promoter, enabling identification of CGRP-expressing live neurons. Interestingly, 78% of TRPA1-responsive neurons were CGRP-negative. Co-labeling with IB4 revealed that the majority (66% of TRPA1 agonist responders were IB4-positive but CGRP-negative. Among TRPA1-null DRGs, few small neurons (2-4% responded to either TRPA1 agonist, indicating that both cinnamaldehyde and AITC specifically target TRPA1. Additionally, few large neurons (≥27 µm diameter responded to AITC (6% or cinnamaldehyde (4%, confirming that most large-diameter somata lack functional TRPA1. Comparison of mouse and rat DRGs showed that the majority of TRPA1-responsive neurons in both species were IB4-positive. Together, these data demonstrate that TRPA1 is

  5. Bilingualism alters brain functional connectivity between "control" regions and "language" regions: Evidence from bimodal bilinguals.

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    Li, Le; Abutalebi, Jubin; Zou, Lijuan; Yan, Xin; Liu, Lanfang; Feng, Xiaoxia; Wang, Ruiming; Guo, Taomei; Ding, Guosheng

    2015-05-01

    Previous neuroimaging studies have revealed that bilingualism induces both structural and functional neuroplasticity in the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC) and the left caudate nucleus (LCN), both of which are associated with cognitive control. Since these "control" regions should work together with other language regions during language processing, we hypothesized that bilingualism may also alter the functional interaction between the dACC/LCN and language regions. Here we tested this hypothesis by exploring the functional connectivity (FC) in bimodal bilinguals and monolinguals using functional MRI when they either performed a picture naming task with spoken language or were in resting state. We found that for bimodal bilinguals who use spoken and sign languages, the FC of the dACC with regions involved in spoken language (e.g. the left superior temporal gyrus) was stronger in performing the task, but weaker in the resting state as compared to monolinguals. For the LCN, its intrinsic FC with sign language regions including the left inferior temporo-occipital part and right inferior and superior parietal lobules was increased in the bilinguals. These results demonstrate that bilingual experience may alter the brain functional interaction between "control" regions and "language" regions. For different control regions, the FC alters in different ways. The findings also deepen our understanding of the functional roles of the dACC and LCN in language processing.

  6. VARIABILITY OF NEURONAL RESPONSES: TYPES AND FUNCTIONAL SIGNIFICANCE IN NEUROPLASTICITY AND NEURAL DARWINISM

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    Alexander Chervyakov

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available In many cases, neural signals detected under the same external experimental conditions significantly change from trial to trial. The variability phenomenon, which complicates extraction of reproducible results and is ignored in many studies by averaging, has attracted attention of researchers in recent years. In this paper, we classify possible types of variability based on its functional significance and describe features of each type. We describe the key adaptive significance of variability at the neural network level and the degeneracy phenomenon that may be important for learning processes in connection with the principle of neuronal group selection.

  7. Theoretical Neuroanatomy:Analyzing the Structure, Dynamics,and Function of Neuronal Networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seth, Anil K.; Edelman, Gerald M.

    The mammalian brain is an extraordinary object: its networks give rise to our conscious experiences as well as to the generation of adaptive behavior for the organism within its environment. Progress in understanding the structure, dynamics and function of the brain faces many challenges. Biological neural networks change over time, their detailed structure is difficult to elucidate, and they are highly heterogeneous both in their neuronal units and synaptic connections. In facing these challenges, graph-theoretic and information-theoretic approaches have yielded a number of useful insights and promise many more.

  8. Nanometric resolution magnetic resonance imaging methods for mapping functional activity in neuronal networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boretti, Albert; Castelletto, Stefania

    2016-01-01

    This contribution highlights and compares some recent achievements in the use of k-space and real space imaging (scanning probe and wide-filed microscope techniques), when applied to a luminescent color center in diamond, known as nitrogen vacancy (NV) center. These techniques combined with the optically detected magnetic resonance of NV, provide a unique platform to achieve nanometric magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) resolution of nearby nuclear spins (known as nanoMRI), and nanometric NV real space localization. •Atomic size optically detectable spin probe.•High magnetic field sensitivity and nanometric resolution.•Non-invasive mapping of functional activity in neuronal networks.

  9. Direct lineage reprogramming of mouse fibroblasts to functional midbrain dopaminergic neuronal progenitors

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    Han-Seop Kim

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The direct lineage reprogramming of somatic cells to other lineages by defined factors has led to innovative cell-fate-change approaches for providing patient-specific cells. Recent reports have demonstrated that four pluripotency factors (Oct4, Sox2, Klf4, and c-Myc are sufficient to directly reprogram fibroblasts to other specific cells, including induced neural stem cells (iNSCs. Here, we show that mouse fibroblasts can be directly reprogrammed into midbrain dopaminergic neuronal progenitors (DPs by temporal expression of the pluripotency factors and environment containing sonic hedgehog and fibroblast growth factor 8. Within thirteen days, self-renewing and functional induced DPs (iDPs were generated. Interestingly, the inhibition of both Jak and Gsk3β notably enhanced the iDP reprogramming efficiency. We confirmed the functionality of the iDPs by showing that the dopaminergic neurons generated from iDPs express midbrain markers, release dopamine, and show typical electrophysiological profiles. Our results demonstrate that the pluripotency factors-mediated direct reprogramming is an invaluable strategy for supplying functional and proliferating iDPs and may be useful for other neural progenitors required for disease modeling and cell therapies for neurodegenerative disorders.

  10. Proliferative reactive gliosis is compatible with glial metabolic support and neuronal function

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    Fero Matthew

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The response of mammalian glial cells to chronic degeneration and trauma is hypothesized to be incompatible with support of neuronal function in the central nervous system (CNS and retina. To test this hypothesis, we developed an inducible model of proliferative reactive gliosis in the absence of degenerative stimuli by genetically inactivating the cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor p27Kip1 (p27 or Cdkn1b in the adult mouse and determined the outcome on retinal structure and function. Results p27-deficient Müller glia reentered the cell cycle, underwent aberrant migration, and enhanced their expression of intermediate filament proteins, all of which are characteristics of Müller glia in a reactive state. Surprisingly, neuroglial interactions, retinal electrophysiology, and visual acuity were normal. Conclusion The benign outcome of proliferative reactive Müller gliosis suggests that reactive glia display context-dependent, graded and dynamic phenotypes and that reactivity in itself is not necessarily detrimental to neuronal function.

  11. Regular consumption of a silicic acid-rich water prevents aluminium-induced alterations of nitrergic neurons in mouse brain: histochemical and immunohistochemical studies.

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    Foglio, E; Buffoli, B; Exley, C; Rezzani, R; Rodella, L F

    2012-08-01

    Silicon is not generally considered an essential nutrient for mammals and, to date, whether it has a biological role or beneficial effects in humans is not known. The results of a number of studies suggest that dietary silicon supplementation might have a protective effect both for limiting aluminium absorption across the gut and for the removal of systemic aluminium via the urine, hence, preventing potential accumulation of aluminium in the brain. Since our previous studies demonstrated that aluminium exposure reduces the number of nitrergic neurons, the aim of the present study was to compare the distribution and the morphology of NO-containing neurons in brain cortex of mice exposed to aluminium sulphate dissolved in silicic acid-rich or poor drinking water to assess the potential protective role of silicon against aluminium toxicity in the brain. NADPH-d histochemistry and nNOS immunohistochemistry showed that high concentrations of silicon in drinking water were able to minimize the impairment of the function of nitrergic neurons induced by aluminium administration. We found that silicon protected against aluminium-induced damage to the nitrergic system: in particular, we demonstrated that silicon maintains the number of nitrergic neurons and their expression of nitrergic enzymes at physiological levels, even after a 12 and 15 month exposure to aluminium.

  12. Age-related changes in functional postsynaptic nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subunits in neurons of the laterodorsal tegmental nucleus, a nucleus important in drug addiction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christensen, Mark H; Kohlmeier, Kristi A

    2016-03-01

    The earlier an individual initiates cigarette smoking, the higher the likelihood of development of dependency to nicotine, the addictive ingredient in cigarettes. One possible mechanism underlying this higher addiction liability is an ontogenetically differential cellular response induced by nicotine in neurons mediating the reinforcing or euphoric effects of this drug, which could arise from age-related differences in the composition of nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) subunits. In the current study, we examined whether the subunit composition of nAChRs differed between neurons within the laterodorsal tegmentum (LDT), a nucleus importantly involved in drug addiction associated behaviours, across two periods of ontogeny in which nicotine-mediated excitatory responses were shown to depend on age. To this end, whole-cell patch-clamp recordings in mouse brain slices from identified LDT neurons, in combination with nAChR subunit-specific receptor antagonists, were conducted. Comparison of the contribution of different nAChR subunits to acetylcholine (ACh)-induced inward currents indicated that the contributions of the β2 and/or β4 and α7 nAChR subunits alter across age. Taken together, we conclude that across a limited ontogenetic period, there is plasticity in the subunit composition of nAChRs in LDT neurons. In addition, our data indicate, for the first time, functional presence of α6 nAChR subunits in LDT neurons within the age ranges studied. Changes in subunit composition of nAChRs across ontogeny could contribute to the age-related differential excitability induced by nicotine. Differences in the subunit composition of nAChRs within the LDT would be expected to contribute to ontogenetic-dependent outflow from the LDT to target regions, which include reward-related circuitry.

  13. Alterations in renal morphology and function after ESWL therapy: evaluation with dynamic contrast-enhanced MRI

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    Krestin, G.P. [Dept. of Medical Radiology, University Hospital Zurich (Switzerland); Fischbach, R. [Dept. of Radiology, Univ. of Cologne (Germany); Vorreuther, R. [Dept. of Urology, Univ. of Cologne (Germany); Schulthess, G.K. von [Dept. of Medical Radiology, University Hospital Zurich (Switzerland)

    1993-06-01

    Contrast-enhanced gradient-echo MRI was used to evaluate morphological and functional alterations in the kidneys after extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy (ESWL). Dynamic MRI with a temporal resolution of 10 s per image was performed by repeated imaging in the coronal plane after administration of gadolinium-DTPA (0.1 mmol/kg) before and after ESWL for renal calculi in 25 patients. Before ESWL 22 patients had normally functioning kidneys, characterised by a marked decrease in signal intensity in the renal medulla 30-40 s after the onset of cortical perfusion. After ESWL 8 patients had functional abnormalities: in 2 cases the medullary signal decrease was disturbed throughout the whole organ, while 6 kidneys demonstrated regional loss of concentrating ability in the medulla. Morphological alterations (oedema with blurred contours and loss of corticomedullary differentiation; parenchymal haemorrhage and haemorrhage in a cortical cyst; subcapsular, perirenal and pararenal haematoma) were detected in 9 cases. Haemorrhage was encountered more often after administration of more than 2500 shock waves; however, no such correlation was seen in the kidneys with functional disturbances following ESWL therapy. MRI proved to be a sensitive method for the assessment of morphological and functional alterations after ESWL, but longer follow-up studies are required to identify the clinical impact of these early changes. (orig.)

  14. Functional Connectivity with the Default Mode Network Is Altered in Fibromyalgia Patients

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    Chiu, Yee; Nurmikko, Turo; Stancak, Andrej

    2016-01-01

    Fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) patients show altered connectivity with the network maintaining ongoing resting brain activity, known as the default mode network (DMN). The connectivity patterns of DMN with the rest of the brain in FMS patients are poorly understood. This study employed seed-based functional connectivity analysis to investigate resting-state functional connectivity with DMN structures in FMS. Sixteen female FMS patients and 15 age-matched, healthy control subjects underwent T2-weighted resting-state MRI scanning and functional connectivity analyses using DMN network seed regions. FMS patients demonstrated alterations to connectivity between DMN structures and anterior midcingulate cortex, right parahippocampal gyrus, left superior parietal lobule and left inferior temporal gyrus. Correlation analysis showed that reduced functional connectivity between the DMN and the right parahippocampal gyrus was associated with longer duration of symptoms in FMS patients, whereas augmented connectivity between the anterior midcingulate and posterior cingulate cortices was associated with tenderness and depression scores. Our findings demonstrate alterations to functional connectivity between DMN regions and a variety of regions which are important for pain, cognitive and emotional processing in FMS patients, and which may contribute to the development or maintenance of chronic symptoms in FMS. PMID:27442504

  15. Tumor-altered dendritic cell function: implications for anti-tumor immunity

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    Kristian Michael Hargadon

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Dendritic cells are key regulators of both innate and adaptive immunity, and the array of immunoregulatory functions exhibited by these cells is dictated by their differentiation, maturation, and activation status. Although a major role for these cells in the induction of immunity to pathogens has long been appreciated, data accumulated over the last several years has demonstrated that DC are also critical regulators of anti-tumor immune responses. However, despite the potential for stimulation of robust anti-tumor immunity by DC, tumor-altered DC function has been observed in many cancer patients and tumor-bearing animals and is often associated with tumor immune escape. Such dysfunction has significant implications for both the induction of natural anti-tumor immune responses as well as the efficacy of immunotherapeutic strategies that target endogenous DC in situ or that employ exogenous DC as part of anti-cancer immunization maneuvers. In this review, the major types of tumor-altered DC function will be described, with emphasis on recent insights into the mechanistic bases for the inhibition of DC differentiation from hematopoietic precursors, the altered programming of DC precursors to differentiate into myeloid-derived suppressor cells or tumor-associated macrophages, the suppression of DC maturation and activation, and the induction of immunoregulatory DC by tumors, tumor-derived factors, and tumor-associated cells within the milieu of the tumor microenvironment. The impact of these tumor-altered cells on the quality of the overall anti-tumor immune response will also be discussed. Finally, this review will also highlight questions concerning tumor-altered DC function that remain unanswered, and it will address factors that have limited advances in the study of this phenomenon in order to focus future research efforts in the field on identifying strategies for interfering with tumor-associated DC dysfunction and improving DC-mediated anti

  16. Mitochondrial function in neuronal cells depends on p97/VCP/Cdc48-mediated quality control

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    Lei eFang

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Maintaining mitochondrial function is essential for neuronal survival and offers protection against neurodegeneration. Ubiquitin-mediated, proteasome-dependent protein degradation in the form of outer mitochondrial membrane associated degradation (OMMAD was shown to play roles in maintenance of mitochondria on the level of proteostasis, but also mitophagy and cell death. Recently, the AAA-ATPase p97/VCP/Cdc48 was recognized as part of OMMAD acting as retrotranslocase of ubiquitinated mitochondrial proteins for proteasomal degradation. Thus, p97 likely plays a major role in mitochondrial maintenance. Support for this notion comes from mitochondrial dysfunction associated with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and hereditary inclusion body myopathy associated with Paget disease of bone and frontotemporal dementia (IBMPFD caused by p97 mutation. Using SH-SY5Y cells stably expressing p97 or dominant-negative p97QQ treated with mitochondrial toxins rotenone, 6-OHDA, or Aβ-peptide as model for neuronal cells suffering from mitochondrial dysfunction, we found mitochondrial fragmentation under normal and stress conditions was significantly increased upon inactivation of p97. Furthermore, inactivation of p97 resulted in loss of mitochondrial membrane potential and increased production of reactive oxygen species (ROS. Under additional stress conditions, loss of mitochondrial membrane potential and increased ROS production was even more pronounced. Loss of mitochondrial fidelity upon inactivation of p97 was likely due to disturbed maintenance of mitochondrial proteostasis as the employed treatments neither induced mitophagy nor cell death. This was supported by the accumulation of oxidatively-damaged proteins on mitochondria in response to p97 inactivation. Dysfunction of p97 under normal and stress conditions in neuron-like cells severely impacts mitochondrial function, thus supporting for the first time a role for p97 as a major component of mitochondrial

  17. Distinct functional and temporal requirements for zebrafish Hdac1 during neural crest-derived craniofacial and peripheral neuron development.

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    Myron S Ignatius

    Full Text Available The regulation of gene expression is accomplished by both genetic and epigenetic means and is required for the precise control of the development of the neural crest. In hdac1(b382 mutants, craniofacial cartilage development is defective in two distinct ways. First, fewer hoxb3a, dlx2 and dlx3-expressing posterior branchial arch precursors are specified and many of those that are consequently undergo apoptosis. Second, in contrast, normal numbers of progenitors are present in the anterior mandibular and hyoid arches, but chondrocyte precursors fail to terminally differentiate. In the peripheral nervous system, there is a disruption of enteric, DRG and sympathetic neuron differentiation in hdac1(b382 mutants compared to wildtype embryos. Specifically, enteric and DRG-precursors differentiate into neurons in the anterior gut and trunk respectively, while enteric and DRG neurons are rarely present in the posterior gut and tail. Sympathetic neuron precursors are specified in hdac1(b382 mutants and they undergo generic neuronal differentiation but fail to undergo noradrenergic differentiation. Using the HDAC inhibitor TSA, we isolated enzyme activity and temporal requirements for HDAC function that reproduce hdac1(b382 defects in craniofacial and sympathetic neuron development. Our study reveals distinct functional and temporal requirements for zebrafish hdac1 during neural crest-derived craniofacial and peripheral neuron development.

  18. Discontinuous Galerkin finite element method for solving population density functions of cortical pyramidal and thalamic neuronal populations.

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    Huang, Chih-Hsu; Lin, Chou-Ching K; Ju, Ming-Shaung

    2015-02-01

    Compared with the Monte Carlo method, the population density method is efficient for modeling collective dynamics of neuronal populations in human brain. In this method, a population density function describes the probabilistic distribution of states of all neurons in the population and it is governed by a hyperbolic partial differential equation. In the past, the problem was mainly solved by using the finite difference method. In a previous study, a continuous Galerkin finite element method was found better than the finite difference method for solving the hyperbolic partial differential equation; however, the population density function often has discontinuity and both methods suffer from a numerical stability problem. The goal of this study is to improve the numerical stability of the solution using discontinuous Galerkin finite element method. To test the performance of the new approach, interaction of a population of cortical pyramidal neurons and a population of thalamic neurons was simulated. The numerical results showed good agreement between results of discontinuous Galerkin finite element and Monte Carlo methods. The convergence and accuracy of the solutions are excellent. The numerical stability problem could be resolved using the discontinuous Galerkin finite element method which has total-variation-diminishing property. The efficient approach will be employed to simulate the electroencephalogram or dynamics of thalamocortical network which involves three populations, namely, thalamic reticular neurons, thalamocortical neurons and cortical pyramidal neurons.

  19. Acetyl-L-Carnitine via Upegulating Dopamine D1 Receptor and Attenuating Microglial Activation Prevents Neuronal Loss and Improves Memory Functions in Parkinsonian Rats.

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    Singh, Sonu; Mishra, Akanksha; Srivastava, Neha; Shukla, Rakesh; Shukla, Shubha

    2016-12-14

    Parkinson's disease is accompanied by nonmotor symptoms including cognitive impairment, which precede the onset of motor symptoms in patients and are regulated by dopamine (DA) receptors and the mesocorticolimbic pathway. The relative contribution of DA receptors and astrocytic glutamate transporter (GLT-1) in cognitive functions is largely unexplored. Similarly, whether microglia-derived increased immune response affects cognitive functions and neuronal survival is not yet understood. We have investigated the effect of acetyl-L-carnitine (ALCAR) on cognitive functions and its possible underlying mechanism of action in 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA)-induced hemiparkinsonian rats. ALCAR treatment in 6-OHDA-lesioned rats improved memory functions as confirmed by decreased latency time and path length in the Morris water maze test. ALCAR further enhanced D1 receptor levels without altering D2 receptor levels in the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex (PFC) regions, suggesting that the D1 receptor is preferentially involved in the regulation of cognitive functions. ALCAR attenuated microglial activation and release of inflammatory mediators through balancing proinflammatory and anti-inflammatory cytokines, which subsequently enhanced the survival of mature neurons in the CA1, CA3, and PFC regions and improved cognitive functions in hemiparkinsonian rats. ALCAR treatment also improved glutathione (GSH) content, while decreasing oxidative stress indices, inducible nitrogen oxide synthase (iNOS) levels, and astrogliosis resulting in the upregulation of GLT-1 levels. Additionally, ALCAR prevented the loss of dopaminergic (DAergic) neurons in ventral tagmental area (VTA)/substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) regions of 6-OHDA-lesioned rats, thus maintaining the integrity of the nigrostriatal pathway. Together, these results demonstrate that ALCAR treatment in hemiparkinsonian rats ameliorates neurodegeneration and cognitive deficits, hence suggesting its therapeutic potential in

  20. Alterations in the Local Axonal Environment Influence Target Reinnervation and Neuronal Survival After PostnataI Axotomy

    Science.gov (United States)

    2000-06-21

    xvii ANOVA BDNF BSA CN CNS CNTF DAB DAPI DPN DPO DRG E(number) ECM EGF EM FGF bFGF FITC GAL-C GGF HRP Ig IGF-I IGF-II IGFBP-I LARB LM MBP NGF p75NGFR...Unfortunately, experiments employing this technique in combination with axotomy have had limited success. Although brain- derived neurotrophic factor ( BDNF ...neurons in the nuclei of uninjured hypoglossal nerves following HRP injections represent a distinct interneuron population that does not project to the

  1. Age-dependent alterations in the cortical entrainment of subthalamic nucleus neurons in the YAC128 mouse model of Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Callahan, Joshua W; Abercrombie, Elizabeth D

    2015-06-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is an autosomal dominant neurodegenerative disorder that results in motor, cognitive and psychiatric abnormalities. Dysfunction in neuronal processing between the cortex and the basal ganglia is fundamental to the onset and progression of the HD phenotype. The corticosubthalamic hyperdirect pathway plays a crucial role in motor selection and blockade of neuronal activity in the subthalamic nucleus (STN) results in hyperkinetic movement abnormalities, similar to the motor symptoms associated with HD. The aim of the present study was to examine whether changes in the fidelity of information transmission between the cortex and the STN emerge as a function of phenotypic severity in the YAC128 mouse model of HD. We obtained in vivo extracellular recordings in the STN and concomitant electrocorticogram (ECoG) recordings during discrete brain states that reflected global cortical network synchronization or desynchronization. At early ages in YAC128 mice, both the cortex and the STN exhibited patterns of hyperexcitability. As symptom severity progressed, cortical entrainment of STN activity was disrupted and there was an increase in the proportion of non-oscillating, tonically firing STN neurons that were less phase-locked to cortical activity. Concomitant to the dissipation of STN entrainment, there was a reduction in the evoked response of STN neurons to focal cortical stimulation. The spontaneous discharge of STN neurons in YAC128 mice also decreased with age and symptom severity. These results indicate dysfunction in the flow of information within the corticosubthalamic circuit and demonstrate progressive age-related disconnection of the hyperdirect pathway in a transgenic mouse model of HD.

  2. A new photosensory function for simple photoreceptors, the intrinsically photoresponsive neurons of the sea slug Onchidium

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    Tsukasa Gotow

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Simple photoreceptors, namely intrinsically light-sensitive neurons without microvilli and/or cilia, have long been known to exist in the central ganglia of crayfish, Aplysia, Onchidium, and Helix. These simple photoreceptors are not only first-order photosensory cells, but also second-order neurons (interneurons, relaying several kinds of sensory synaptic inputs. Another important issue is that the photoresponses of these simple photoreceptors show very slow kinetics and little adaptation. These characteristics suggest that the simple photoreceptors of the Onchidium have a function in non-image-forming vision, different from classical eye photoreceptors used for cording dynamic images of vision. The cited literature provides evidence that the depolarizing and hyperpolarizing photoresponses of simple photoreceptors play a role in the long-lasting potentiation of synaptic transmission of excitatory and inhibitory sensory inputs, and as well as in the potentiation and the suppression of the subsequent behavioral outputs. In short, we suggest that simple photoreceptors operate in the general potentiation of synaptic transmission and subsequent motor output; i.e., they perform a new photosensory function.

  3. Early postnatal respiratory viral infection alters hippocampal neurogenesis, cell fate, and neuron morphology in the neonatal piglet.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conrad, Matthew S; Harasim, Samantha; Rhodes, Justin S; Van Alstine, William G; Johnson, Rodney W

    2015-02-01

    Respiratory viral infections are common during the neonatal period in humans, but little is known about how early-life infection impacts brain development. The current study used a neonatal piglet model as piglets have a gyrencephalic brain with growth and development similar to human infants. Piglets were inoculated with porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) to evaluate how chronic neuroinflammation affects hippocampal neurogenesis and neuron morphology. Piglets in the neurogenesis study received one bromodeoxyuridine injection on postnatal day (PD) 7 and then were inoculated with PRRSV. Piglets were sacrificed at PD 28 and the number of BrdU+ cells and cell fate were quantified in the dentate gyrus. PRRSV piglets showed a 24% reduction in the number of newly divided cells forming neurons. Approximately 15% of newly divided cells formed microglia, but this was not affected by sex or PRRSV. Additionally, there was a sexual dimorphism of new cell survival in the dentate gyrus where males had more cells than females, and PRRSV infection caused a decreased survival in males only. Golgi impregnation was used to characterize dentate granule cell morphology. Sholl analysis revealed that PRRSV caused a change in inner granule cell morphology where the first branch point was extended further from the cell body. Males had more complex dendritic arbors than females in the outer granule cell layer, but this was not affected by PRRSV. There were no changes to dendritic spine density or morphology distribution. These findings suggest that early-life viral infection can impact brain development.

  4. Patterning human neuronal networks on photolithographically engineered silicon dioxide substrates functionalized with glial analogues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Mark A; Brennan, Paul M; Bunting, Andrew S; Cameron, Katherine; Murray, Alan F; Shipston, Mike J

    2014-05-01

    Interfacing neurons with silicon semiconductors is a challenge being tackled through various bioengineering approaches. Such constructs inform our understanding of neuronal coding and learning and ultimately guide us toward creating intelligent neuroprostheses. A fundamental prerequisite is to dictate the spatial organization of neuronal cells. We sought to pattern neurons using photolithographically defined arrays of polymer parylene-C, activated with fetal calf serum. We used a purified human neuronal cell line [Lund human mesencephalic (LUHMES)] to establish whether neurons remain viable when isolated on-chip or whether they require a supporting cell substrate. When cultured in isolation, LUHMES neurons failed to pattern and did not show any morphological signs of differentiation. We therefore sought a cell type with which to prepattern parylene regions, hypothesizing that this cellular template would enable secondary neuronal adhesion and network formation. From a range of cell lines tested, human embryonal kidney (HEK) 293 cells patterned with highest accuracy. LUHMES neurons adhered to pre-established HEK 293 cell clusters and this coculture environment promoted morphological differentiation of neurons. Neurites extended between islands of adherent cell somata, creating an orthogonally arranged neuronal network. HEK 293 cells appear to fulfill a role analogous to glia, dictating cell adhesion, and generating an environment conducive to neuronal survival. We next replaced HEK 293 cells with slower growing glioma-derived precursors. These primary human cells patterned accurately on parylene and provided a similarly effective scaffold for neuronal adhesion. These findings advance the use of this microfabrication-compatible platform for neuronal patterning.

  5. Functional neuroanatomy of altered states of consciousness: the transient hypofrontality hypothesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dietrich, Arne

    2003-06-01

    It is the central hypothesis of this paper that the mental states commonly referred to as altered states of consciousness are principally due to transient prefrontal cortex deregulation. Supportive evidence from psychological and neuroscientific studies of dreaming, endurance running, meditation, daydreaming, hypnosis, and various drug-induced states is presented and integrated. It is proposed that transient hypofrontality is the unifying feature of all altered states and that the phenomenological uniqueness of each state is the result of the differential viability of various frontal circuits. Using an evolutionary approach, consciousness is conceptualized as hierarchically ordered cognitive function. Higher-order structures perform increasingly integrative functions and thus contribute more sophisticated content. Although this implies a holistic approach to consciousness, such a functional hierarchy localizes the most sophisticated layers of consciousness in the zenithal higher-order structure: the prefrontal cortex. The hallmark of altered states of consciousness is the subtle modification of behavioral and cognitive functions that are typically ascribed to the prefrontal cortex. The theoretical framework presented yields a number of testable hypotheses.

  6. Altered mitochondrial function and energy metabolism is associated with a radioresistant phenotype in oesophageal adenocarcinoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lynam-Lennon, Niamh; Maher, Stephen G; Maguire, Aoife; Phelan, James; Muldoon, Cian; Reynolds, John V; O'Sullivan, Jacintha

    2014-01-01

    Neoadjuvant chemoradiation therapy (CRT) is increasingly the standard of care for locally advanced oesophageal cancer. A complete pathological response to CRT is associated with a favourable outcome. Radiation therapy is important for local tumour control, however, radioresistance remains a substantial clinical problem. We hypothesise that alterations in mitochondrial function and energy metabolism are involved in the radioresistance of oesophageal adenocarcinoma (OAC). To investigate this, we used an established isogenic cell line model of radioresistant OAC. Radioresistant cells (OE33 R) demonstrated significantly increased levels of random mitochondrial mutations, which were coupled with alterations in mitochondrial function, size, morphology and gene expression, supporting a role for mitochondrial dysfunction in the radioresistance of this model. OE33 R cells also demonstrated altered bioenergetics, demonstrating significantly increased intracellular ATP levels, which was attributed to enhanced mitochondrial respiration. Radioresistant cells also demonstrated metabolic plasticity, efficiently switching between the glycolysis and oxidative phosphorylation energy metabolism pathways, which were accompanied by enhanced clonogenic survival. This data was supported in vivo, in pre-treatment OAC tumour tissue. Tumour ATP5B expression, a marker of oxidative phosphorylation, was significantly increased in patients who subsequently had a poor pathological response to neoadjuvant CRT. This suggests for the first time, a role for specific mitochondrial alterations and metabolic remodelling in the radioresistance of OAC.

  7. Altered mitochondrial function and energy metabolism is associated with a radioresistant phenotype in oesophageal adenocarcinoma.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Niamh Lynam-Lennon

    Full Text Available Neoadjuvant chemoradiation therapy (CRT is increasingly the standard of care for locally advanced oesophageal cancer. A complete pathological response to CRT is associated with a favourable outcome. Radiation therapy is important for local tumour control, however, radioresistance remains a substantial clinical problem. We hypothesise that alterations in mitochondrial function and energy metabolism are involved in the radioresistance of oesophageal adenocarcinoma (OAC. To investigate this, we used an established isogenic cell line model of radioresistant OAC. Radioresistant cells (OE33 R demonstrated significantly increased levels of random mitochondrial mutations, which were coupled with alterations in mitochondrial function, size, morphology and gene expression, supporting a role for mitochondrial dysfunction in the radioresistance of this model. OE33 R cells also demonstrated altered bioenergetics, demonstrating significantly increased intracellular ATP levels, which was attributed to enhanced mitochondrial respiration. Radioresistant cells also demonstrated metabolic plasticity, efficiently switching between the glycolysis and oxidative phosphorylation energy metabolism pathways, which were accompanied by enhanced clonogenic survival. This data was supported in vivo, in pre-treatment OAC tumour tissue. Tumour ATP5B expression, a marker of oxidative phosphorylation, was significantly increased in patients who subsequently had a poor pathological response to neoadjuvant CRT. This suggests for the first time, a role for specific mitochondrial alterations and metabolic remodelling in the radioresistance of OAC.

  8. Mitochondria-targeted antioxidant mitotempo protects mitochondrial function against amyloid beta toxicity in primary cultured mouse neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Hongtao; Li, Mo

    2016-09-01

    Mitochondrial defects including excess reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and compromised ATP generation are featured pathology in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Amyloid beta (Aβ)-mediated mitochondrial ROS overproduction disrupts intra-neuronal Redox balance, in turn exacerbating mitochondrial dysfunction leading to neuronal injury. Previous studies have found the beneficial effects of mitochondria-targeted antioxidants in preventing mitochondrial dysfunction and neuronal injury in AD animal and cell models, suggesting that mitochondrial ROS scavengers hold promise for the treatment of this neurological disorder. In this study, we have determined that mitotempo, a novel mitochondria-targeted antioxidant protects mitochondrial function from the toxicity of Aβ in primary cultured neurons. Our results showed that Aβ-promoted mitochondrial superoxide production and neuronal lipid oxidation were significantly suppressed by the application of mitotempo. Moreover, mitotempo also demonstrated protective effects on mitochondrial bioenergetics evidenced by preserved mitochondrial membrane potential, cytochrome c oxidase activity as well as ATP production. In addition, the Aβ-induced mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) depletion and decreased expression levels of mtDNA replication-related DNA polymerase gamma (DNA pol γ) and Twinkle were substantially mitigated by mitotempo. Therefore, our study suggests that elimination of excess mitochondrial ROS rescues mitochondrial function in Aβ-insulted neruons; and mitotempo has the potential to be a promising therapeutic agent to protect mitochondrial and neuronal function in AD.

  9. Correlation between serum neuron specific enolase and functional neurological outcome in patients of acute ischemic stroke

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sana Zaheer

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Context: The use of biomarkers to predict stroke prognosis is gaining particular attention nowadays. Neuron specific enolase (NSE, which is a dimeric isoenzyme of the glycolytic enzyme enolase and is found mainly in the neurons is one such biomarker. Aims: This study was carried out on patients of acute ischemic stroke with the aims to determine the correlation between NSE levels on the day of admission with infarct volume, stroke severity, and functional neurological outcome on day 30. Materials and Methods: Seventy five patients of acute ischemic stroke admitted in the Department of Medicine were included in the study. Levels of NSE were determined on day 1 using the human NSE ELISA kit (Alpha Diagnostic International Texas 78244, USA. Volume of infarct was measured by computed tomography (CT scan using the preinstalled software Syngo (version A40A of Siemen′s medical solutions (Forchheim, Germany. Stroke severity at admission was assessed using Glasgow coma scale (GCS and functional neurological outcome was assessed using modified Rankin scale (mRS on day 30. Statistical Analysis Used: Statistical analysis was performed using the SPSS software for windows version 15.0 (SPSS. Results: A positive correlation was found between concentration of NSE on day 1 and infarct volume determined by CT scan (r = 0.955, P < 0.001. A strong negative correlation was found between GCS at presentation and concentration of NSE on day 1 (r = −0.806, P < 0.001. There was a positive correlation between NSE levels at day 1 and functional neurological outcome assessed by mRS at day 30 (r = 0.744, P < 0.001. Conclusions: Serum levels of NSE in first few days of ischemic stroke can serve as a useful marker to predict stroke severity and early functional outcome. However, larger studies with serial estimation of NSE are needed to establish these observations more firmly.

  10. Prevention of Hippocampal Neuronal Damage and Cognitive Function Deficits in Vascular Dementia by Dextromethorphan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Xiaofeng; Zhang, Bin; Lu, Kaili; Deng, Jiangshan; Zhao, Fei; Zhao, Bing-Qiao; Zhao, Yuwu

    2016-07-01

    Dextromethorphan (DM) is a non-competitive antagonist of NMDA receptors and a widely used component of cough medicine. Recently, its indication has been extended experimentally to a wide range of disorders including inflammation-mediated central nervous system disorders such as Parkinson disease (PD) and multiple sclerosis (MS). In this study, we investigate whether DM treatment has protective effects on the hippocampal neuron damage induced by bilateral occlusion of the common carotid arteries (two-vessel occlusion [2VO]), an animal model of vascular dementia (VaD). Sprague-Dawley (SD) (10 weeks of age) rats were subjected to the 2VO, and DM was injected intraperitoneally once per day for 37 days. Neuron death, glial activation, and cognitive function were assessed at 37 days after 2VO (0.2 mg/kg, i.p., "DM-0.2" and 2 mg/kg, i.p., "DM-2"). DM-2 treatment provided protection against neuronal death and glial activation in the hippocampal CA1 subfield and reduced cognitive impairment induced by 2VO in rats. The study also demonstrates that activation of the Nrf2-HO-1 pathway and upregulation of superoxide dismutase (SOD) play important roles in these effects. These results suggest that DM is effective in treating VaD and protecting against oxidative stress, which is strongly implicated in the pathogenesis of VaD. Therefore, the present study suggests that DM treatment may represent a new and promising protective strategy for treating VaD.

  11. Functional Selectivity of Kappa Opioid Receptor Agonists in Peripheral Sensory Neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jamshidi, Raehannah J.; Jacobs, Blaine A.; Sullivan, Laura C.; Chavera, Teresa A.; Saylor, Rachel M.; Prisinzano, Thomas E.; Clarke, William P.

    2015-01-01

    Activation of kappa opioid receptors (KORs) expressed by peripheral sensory neurons that respond to noxious stimuli (nociceptors) can reduce neurotransmission of pain stimuli from the periphery to the central nervous system. We have previously shown that the antinociception dose-response curve for peripherally restricted doses of the KOR agonist (–)-(trans)-3,4-dichloro-N-methyl-N-[2-(1-pyrrolidinyl)cyclohexyl]benzeneacetamide (U50488) has an inverted U shape. Here, we found that the downward phase of the U50488 dose-response curve was blocked by an inhibitor of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) activation U0126. Local administration of the selective KOR agonist salvinorin A (Sal-A), also resulted in an inverted U-shaped curve; however, the downward phase was insensitive to U0126. By contrast, inhibition of c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) partially blocked the downward phase of the dose-response curve to Sal-A, suggesting a role for JNK. In cultures of peripheral sensory neurons, U50488 and Sal-A inhibited adenylyl cyclase activity with similar efficacies; however, their ability to activate ERK and JNK differed. Whereas U50488 activated ERK but not JNK, Sal-A activated JNK but not ERK. Moreover, although both U50488 and Sal-A produced homologous desensitization, desensitization to U50488 was blocked by inhibition of ERK activation, whereas desensitization to Sal-A was blocked by inhibition of JNK. Substitution of an ethoxymethyl ether for the C2 position acetyl group of Sal-A reduced stimulation of JNK, prevented desensitization by ethoxymethyl ether for the C2 position acetyl group of Sal-A, and resulted in a monotonic antinociception dose-response curve. Collectively, these data demonstrate the functional selectivity of KOR ligands for signaling in peripheral sensory neurons, which results in differential effects on behavioral responses in vivo. PMID:26297384

  12. Functional differentiation of macaque visual temporal cortical neurons using a parametric action space.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vangeneugden, Joris; Pollick, Frank; Vogels, Rufin

    2009-03-01

    Neurons in the rostral superior temporal sulcus (STS) are responsive to displays of body movements. We employed a parametric action space to determine how similarities among actions are represented by visual temporal neurons and how form and motion information contributes to their responses. The stimulus space consisted of a stick-plus-point-light figure performing arm actions and their blends. Multidimensional scaling showed that the responses of temporal neurons represented the ordinal similarity between these actions. Further tests distinguished neurons responding equally strongly to static presentations and to actions ("snapshot" neurons), from those responding much less strongly to static presentations, but responding well when motion was present ("motion" neurons). The "motion" neurons were predominantly found in the upper bank/fundus of the STS, and "snapshot" neurons in the lower bank of the STS and inferior temporal convexity. Most "motion" neurons showed strong response modulation during the course of an action, thus responding to action kinematics. "Motion" neurons displayed a greater average selectivity for these simple arm actions than did "snapshot" neurons. We suggest that the "motion" neurons code for visual kinematics, whereas the "snapshot" neurons code for form/posture, and that both can contribute to action recognition, in agreement with computation models of action recognition.

  13. Highly efficient cell-type-specific gene inactivation reveals a key function for the Drosophila FUS homolog cabeza in neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frickenhaus, Marie; Wagner, Marina; Mallik, Moushami; Catinozzi, Marica; Storkebaum, Erik

    2015-03-16

    To expand the rich genetic toolkit of Drosophila melanogaster, we evaluated whether introducing FRT or LoxP sites in endogenous genes could allow for cell-type-specific gene inactivation in both dividing and postmitotic cells by GAL4-driven expression of FLP or Cre recombinase. For proof of principle, conditional alleles were generated for cabeza (caz), the Drosophila homolog of human FUS, a gene implicated in the neurodegenerative disorders amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and frontotemporal dementia (FTD). Upon selective expression in neurons or muscle, both FLP and Cre mediated caz inactivation in all neurons or muscle cells, respectively. Neuron-selective caz inactivation resulted in failure of pharate adult flies to eclose from the pupal case, and adult escapers displayed motor performance defects and reduced life span. Due to Cre-toxicity, FLP/FRT is the preferred system for cell-type-specific gene inactivation, and this strategy outperforms RNAi-mediated knock-down. Furthermore, the GAL80 target system allowed for temporal control over gene inactivation, as induction of FLP expression from the adult stage onwards still inactivated caz in >99% of neurons. Remarkably, selective caz inactivation in adult neurons did not affect motor performance and life span, indicating that neuronal caz is required during development, but not for maintenance of adult neuronal function.

  14. Corticotropin-releasing factor receptors and stress-related alterations of gut motor function.

    OpenAIRE

    2007-01-01

    International audience; Over the past few decades, corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) signaling pathways have been shown to be the main coordinators of the endocrine, behavioral, and immune responses to stress. Emerging evidence also links the activation of CRF receptors type 1 and type 2 with stress-related alterations of gut motor function. Here, we review the role of CRF receptors in both the brain and the gut as part of key mechanisms through which various stressors impact propulsive ac...

  15. Investigations on Alterations of Hippocampal Circuit Function Following Mild Traumatic Brain Injury

    OpenAIRE

    2012-01-01

    Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) afflicts more than 1.7 million people in the United States each year and even mild TBI can lead to persistent neurological impairments 1. Two pervasive and disabling symptoms experienced by TBI survivors, memory deficits and a reduction in seizure threshold, are thought to be mediated by TBI-induced hippocampal dysfunction 2,3. In order to demonstrate how altered hippocampal circuit function adversely affects behavior after TBI in mice, we employ lateral fluid per...

  16. Early disruption of the actin cytoskeleton in cultured cerebellar granule neurons exposed to 3-morpholinosydnonimine-oxidative stress is linked to alterations of the cytosolic calcium concentration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tiago, Teresa; Marques-da-Silva, Dorinda; Samhan-Arias, Alejandro K; Aureliano, Manuel; Gutierrez-Merino, Carlos

    2011-03-01

    Cytoskeleton damage is a frequent feature in neuronal cell death and one of the early events in oxidant-induced cell injury. This work addresses whether actin cytoskeleton reorganization is an early event of SIN-1-induced extracellular nitrosative/oxidative stress in cultured cerebellar granule neurons (CGN). The actin polymerization state, i.e. the relative levels of G-/F-actin, was quantitatively assessed by the ratio of the fluorescence intensities of microscopy images obtained from CGN double-labelled with Alexa594-DNase-I (for actin monomers) and Bodipy-FL-phallacidin (for actin filaments). Exposure of CGN to a flux of peroxynitrite as low as 0.5-1μM/min during 30min (achieved with 0.1mM SIN-1) was found to promote alterations of the actin cytoskeleton dynamics as it increases the G-actin/F-actin ratio. Because L-type voltage-operated Ca(2+) channels (L-VOCC) are primary targets in CGN exposed to SIN-1, the possible role of Ca(2+) dynamics on the perturbation of the actin cytoskeleton was also assessed from the cytosolic Ca(2+) concentration response to the L-VOCC's agonist FPL-64176 and to the L-VOCC's blocker nifedipine. The results showed that SIN-1 induced changes in the actin polymerization state correlated with its ability to decrease Ca(2+) influx through L-VOCC. Combined analysis of cytosolic Ca(2+) concentration and G-actin/F-actin ratio alterations by SIN-1, cytochalasin D, latrunculin B and jasplakinolide support that disruption of the actin cytoskeleton is linked to cytosolic calcium concentration changes.

  17. Chronic Alcohol Ingestion in Rats Alters Lung Metabolism, Promotes Lipid Accumulation, and Impairs Alveolar Macrophage Functions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Romero, Freddy; Shah, Dilip; Duong, Michelle; Stafstrom, William; Hoek, Jan B.; Kallen, Caleb B.; Lang, Charles H.

    2014-01-01

    Chronic alcoholism impairs pulmonary immune homeostasis and predisposes to inflammatory lung diseases, including infectious pneumonia and acute respiratory distress syndrome. Although alcoholism has been shown to alter hepatic metabolism, leading to lipid accumulation, hepatitis, and, eventually, cirrhosis, the effects of alcohol on pulmonary metabolism remain largely unknown. Because both the lung and the liver actively engage in lipid synthesis, we hypothesized that chronic alcoholism would impair pulmonary metabolic homeostasis in ways similar to its effects in the liver. We reasoned that perturbations in lipid metabolism might contribute to the impaired pulmonary immunity observed in people who chronically consume alcohol. We studied the metabolic consequences of chronic alcohol consumption in rat lungs in vivo and in alveolar epithelial type II cells and alveolar macrophages (AMs) in vitro. We found that chronic alcohol ingestion significantly alters lung metabolic homeostasis, inhibiting AMP-activated protein kinase, increasing lipid synthesis, and suppressing the expression of genes essential to metabolizing fatty acids (FAs). Furthermore, we show that these metabolic alterations promoted a lung phenotype that is reminiscent of alcoholic fatty liver and is characterized by marked accumulation of triglycerides and free FAs within distal airspaces, AMs, and, to a lesser extent, alveolar epithelial type II cells. We provide evidence that the metabolic alterations in alcohol-exposed rats are mechanistically linked to immune impairments in the alcoholic lung: the elevations in FAs alter AM phenotypes and suppress both phagocytic functions and agonist-induced inflammatory responses. In summary, our work demonstrates that chronic alcohol ingestion impairs lung metabolic homeostasis and promotes pulmonary immune dysfunction. These findings suggest that therapies aimed at reversing alcohol-related metabolic alterations might be effective for preventing and

  18. Perfusion deficits and functional connectivity alterations in patients with post-traumatic stress disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yang; Li, Baojuan; Zhang, Xi; Zhang, Linchuan; Li, Liang; Lu, Hongbing

    2016-03-01

    To explore the alteration in cerebral blood flow (CBF) and functional connectivity between survivors with recent onset post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and without PTSD, survived from the same coal mine flood disaster. In this study, a processing pipeline using arterial spin labeling (ASL) sequence was proposed. Considering low spatial resolution of ASL sequence, a linear regression method was firstly used to correct the partial volume (PV) effect for better CBF estimation. Then the alterations of CBF between two groups were analyzed using both uncorrected and PV-corrected CBF maps. Based on altered CBF regions detected from the CBF analysis as seed regions, the functional connectivity abnormities in PTSD patients was investigated. The CBF analysis using PV-corrected maps indicates CBF deficits in the bilateral frontal lobe, right superior frontal gyrus and right corpus callosum of PTSD patients, while only right corpus callosum was identified in uncorrected CBF analysis. Furthermore, the regional CBF of the right superior frontal gyrus exhibits significantly negative correlation with the symptom severity in PTSD patients. The resting-state functional connectivity indicates increased connectivity between left frontal lobe and right parietal lobe. These results indicate that PV-corrected CBF exhibits more subtle perfusion changes and may benefit further perfusion and connectivity analysis. The symptom-specific perfusion deficits and aberrant connectivity in above memory-related regions may be putative biomarkers for recent onset PTSD induced by a single prolonged trauma exposure and help predict the severity of PTSD.

  19. Direct Induction and Functional Maturation of Forebrain GABAergic Neurons from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alfred Xuyang Sun

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA-releasing interneurons play an important modulatory role in the cortex and have been implicated in multiple neurological disorders. Patient-derived interneurons could provide a foundation for studying the pathogenesis of these diseases as well as for identifying potential therapeutic targets. Here, we identified a set of genetic factors that could robustly induce human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs into GABAergic neurons (iGNs with high efficiency. We demonstrated that the human iGNs express neurochemical markers and exhibit mature electrophysiological properties within 6–8 weeks. Furthermore, in vitro, iGNs could form functional synapses with other iGNs or with human-induced glutamatergic neurons (iENs. Upon transplantation into immunodeficient mice, human iGNs underwent synaptic maturation and integration into host neural circuits. Taken together, our rapid and highly efficient single-step protocol to generate iGNs may be useful to both mechanistic and translational studies of human interneurons.

  20. Functional Neurons Generated from T Cell-Derived Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells for Neurological Disease Modeling

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    Takuya Matsumoto

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Modeling of neurological diseases using induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs derived from the somatic cells of patients has provided a means of elucidating pathogenic mechanisms and performing drug screening. T cells are an ideal source of patient-specific iPSCs because they can be easily obtained from samples. Recent studies indicated that iPSCs retain an epigenetic memory relating to their cell of origin that restricts their differentiation potential. The classical method of differentiation via embryoid body formation was not suitable for T cell-derived iPSCs (TiPSCs. We developed a neurosphere-based robust differentiation protocol, which enabled TiPSCs to differentiate into functional neurons, despite differences in global gene expression between TiPSCs and adult human dermal fibroblast-derived iPSCs. Furthermore, neurons derived from TiPSCs generated from a juvenile patient with Parkinson's disease exhibited several Parkinson's disease phenotypes. Therefore, we conclude that TiPSCs are a useful tool for modeling neurological diseases.

  1. Alteration of long-distance functional connectivity and network topology in patients with supratentorial gliomas

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Park, Ji Eun; Kim, Ho Sung; Kim, Sang Joon; Shim, Woo Hyun [University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Department of Radiology and Research Institute of Radiology, Asan Medical Center, Songpa-Gu, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Kim, Jeong Hoon [University of Ulsan College of Medicine, Department of Neurosurgery, Asan Medical Center, Seoul (Korea, Republic of)

    2016-03-15

    The need for information regarding functional alterations in patients with brain gliomas is increasing, but little is known about the functional consequences of focal brain tumors throughout the entire brain. Using resting-state functional MR imaging (rs-fMRI), this study assessed functional connectivity in patients with supratentorial brain gliomas with possible alterations in long-distance connectivity and network topology. Data from 36 patients with supratentorial brain gliomas and 12 healthy subjects were acquired using rs-fMRI. The functional connectivity matrix (FCM) was created using 32 pairs of cortical seeds on Talairach coordinates in each individual subject. Local and distant connectivity were calculated using z-scores in the individual patient's FCM, and the averaged FCM of patients was compared with that of healthy subjects. Weighted network analysis was performed by calculating local efficiency, global efficiency, clustering coefficient, and small-world topology, and compared between patients and healthy controls. When comparing the averaged FCM of patients with that of healthy controls, the patients showed decreased long-distance, inter-hemispheric connectivity (0.32 ± 0.16 in patients vs. 0. 42 ± 0.15 in healthy controls, p = 0.04). In network analysis, patients showed increased local efficiency (p < 0.05), but global efficiency, clustering coefficient, and small-world topology were relatively preserved compared to healthy subjects. Patients with supratentorial brain gliomas showed decreased long-distance connectivity while increased local efficiency and preserved small-world topology. The results of this small case series may provide a better understanding of the alterations of functional connectivity in patients with brain gliomas across the whole brain scale. (orig.)

  2. Lychee Seed Saponins Improve Cognitive Function and Prevent Neuronal Injury via Inhibiting Neuronal Apoptosis in a Rat Model of Alzheimer’s Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiuling Wang

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Lychee seed is a traditional Chinese medicine and possesses many activities, including hypoglycemia, liver protection, antioxidation, antivirus, and antitumor. However, its effect on neuroprotection is still unclear. The present study investigated the effects of lychee seed saponins (LSS on neuroprotection and associated mechanisms. We established a rat model of Alzheimer’s disease (AD by injecting Aβ25–35 into the lateral ventricle of rats and evaluated the effect of LSS on spatial learning and memory ability via the Morris water maze. Neuronal apoptosis was analyzed by hematoxylin and eosin stain and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase (Tdt-mediated dUTP nick-end labeling analysis, and mRNA expression of caspase-3 and protein expressions of Bax and Bcl-2 by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR and Western blotting, respectively. The results showed that LSS remarkably improved cognitive function and alleviated neuronal injury by inhibiting apoptosis in the hippocampus of AD rats. Furthermore, the mRNA expression of caspase-3 and the protein expression of Bax were downregulated, while the protein expression of Bcl-2 and the ratio of Bcl-2/Bax were increased by LSS. We demonstrate that LSS significantly improves cognitive function and prevent neuronal injury in the AD rats via regulation of the apoptosis pathway. Therefore, LSS may be developed as a nutritional supplement and sold as a drug for AD prevention and/or treatment.

  3. Lychee Seed Saponins Improve Cognitive Function and Prevent Neuronal Injury via Inhibiting Neuronal Apoptosis in a Rat Model of Alzheimer’s Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xiuling; Wu, Jianming; Yu, Chonglin; Tang, Yong; Liu, Jian; Chen, Haixia; Jin, Bingjin; Mei, Qibing; Cao, Shousong; Qin, Dalian

    2017-01-01

    Lychee seed is a traditional Chinese medicine and possesses many activities, including hypoglycemia, liver protection, antioxidation, antivirus, and antitumor. However, its effect on neuroprotection is still unclear. The present study investigated the effects of lychee seed saponins (LSS) on neuroprotection and associated mechanisms. We established a rat model of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) by injecting Aβ25–35 into the lateral ventricle of rats and evaluated the effect of LSS on spatial learning and memory ability via the Morris water maze. Neuronal apoptosis was analyzed by hematoxylin and eosin stain and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase (Tdt)-mediated dUTP nick-end labeling analysis, and mRNA expression of caspase-3 and protein expressions of Bax and Bcl-2 by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and Western blotting, respectively. The results showed that LSS remarkably improved cognitive function and alleviated neuronal injury by inhibiting apoptosis in the hippocampus of AD rats. Furthermore, the mRNA expression of caspase-3 and the protein expression of Bax were downregulated, while the protein expression of Bcl-2 and the ratio of Bcl-2/Bax were increased by LSS. We demonstrate that LSS significantly improves cognitive function and prevent neuronal injury in the AD rats via regulation of the apoptosis pathway. Therefore, LSS may be developed as a nutritional supplement and sold as a drug for AD prevention and/or treatment. PMID:28165366

  4. Multiple functions of precursor BDNF to CNS neurons: negative regulation of neurite growth, spine formation and cell survival

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Koshimizu Hisatsugu

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Proneurotrophins and mature neurotrophins elicit opposite effects via the p75 neurotrophin receptor (p75NTR and Trk tyrosine kinase receptors, respectively; however the molecular roles of proneurotrophins in the CNS are not fully understood. Results Based on two rare single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs of the human brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF gene, we generated R125M-, R127L- and R125M/R127L-BDNF, which have amino acid substitution(s near the cleavage site between the pro- and mature-domain of BDNF. Western blot analyses demonstrated that these BDNF variants are poorly cleaved and result in the predominant secretion of proBDNF. Using these cleavage-resistant proBDNF (CR-proBDNF variants, the molecular and cellular roles of proBDNF on the CNS neurons were examined. First, CR-proBDNF showed normal intracellular distribution and secretion in cultured hippocampal neurons, suggesting that inhibition of proBDNF cleavage does not affect intracellular transportation and secretion of BDNF. Second, we purified recombinant CR-proBDNF and tested its biological effects using cultured CNS neurons. Treatment with CR-proBDNF elicited apoptosis of cultured cerebellar granule neurons (CGNs, while treatment with mature BDNF (matBDNF promoted cell survival. Third, we examined the effects of CR-proBDNF on neuronal morphology using more than 2-week cultures of basal forebrain cholinergic neurons (BFCNs and hippocampal neurons. Interestingly, in marked contrast to the action of matBDNF, which increased the number of cholinergic fibers and hippocampal dendritic spines, CR-proBDNF dramatically reduced the number of cholinergic fibers and hippocampal dendritic spines, without affecting the survival of these neurons. Conclusion These results suggest that proBDNF has distinct functions in different populations of CNS neurons and might be responsible for specific physiological cellular processes in the brain.

  5. Interleukin-18 alters protein expressions of neurodegenerative diseases-linked proteins in human SH-SY5Y neuron-like cells

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    Elina M Sutinen

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Chronic inflammation and oxidative stress (OS are present in Alzheimer´s disease (AD brains in addition to neuronal loss, Amyloid-β (Aβ plaques and hyperphosphorylated tau-protein neurofibrillary tangles. Previously we showed that levels of the pro-inflammatory cytokine, interleukin-18 (IL-18, are elevated in post-mortem AD brains. IL-18 can modulate the tau kinases, Cdk5 and GSK3β, as well as Aβ-production. IL-18 levels are also increased in AD risk diseases, including type-2 diabetes and obesity. Here, we explored other IL-18 regulated proteins in neuron-like SH-SY5Y cells. Differentiated SH-SY5Y cells, incubated with IL-18 for 24, 48 or 72h, were analyzed by two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2D-DIGE. Specific altered protein spots were chosen and identified with mass spectrometry and verified by western immunoblotting. IL-18 had time-dependent effects on the SH-SY5Y proteome, modulating numerous protein levels/modifications. We concentrated on those related to OS (DDAH2, peroxiredoxins 2, 3 and 6, DJ-1, BLVRA, Aβ-degradation (MMP14, TIMP2, Aβ-aggregation (Septin-2 and modifications of axon growth and guidance associated, collapsing response mediator protein 2 (CRMP2. IL-18 significantly increased antioxidative enzymes, indicative of OS, and altered levels of glycolytic α- and γ-enolase and multifunctional 14-3-3γ and -ε, commonly affected in neurodegenerative diseases. MMP14, TIMP2, α-enolase and 14-3-3ε, indirectly involved in Aβ metabolism, as well as Septin-2 showed changes that increase Aβ levels. Increased 14-3-3γ may contribute to GSK3β driven tau hyperphosphorylation and CRMP2 Thr514 and Ser522 phosphorylation with the Thr555-site, a target for Rho kinase, showing time-dependent changes. IL-18 also increased caspase-1 levels and vacuolization of the cells. Although our SH-SY5Y cells were not aged, as neurons in AD, our work suggests that heightened or prolonged IL-18 levels can drive protein changes of known

  6. Surviving endoplasmic reticulum stress is coupled to altered chondrocyte differentiation and function.

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    Kwok Yeung Tsang

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available In protein folding and secretion disorders, activation of endoplasmic reticulum (ER stress signaling (ERSS protects cells, alleviating stress that would otherwise trigger apoptosis. Whether the stress-surviving cells resume normal function is not known. We studied the in vivo impact of ER stress in terminally differentiating hypertrophic chondrocytes (HCs during endochondral bone formation. In transgenic mice expressing mutant collagen X as a consequence of a 13-base pair deletion in Col10a1 (13del, misfolded alpha1(X chains accumulate in HCs and elicit ERSS. Histological and gene expression analyses showed that these chondrocytes survived ER stress, but terminal differentiation is interrupted, and endochondral bone formation is delayed, producing a chondrodysplasia phenotype. This altered differentiation involves cell-cycle re-entry, the re-expression of genes characteristic of a prehypertrophic-like state, and is cell-autonomous. Concomitantly, expression of Col10a1 and 13del mRNAs are reduced, and ER stress is alleviated. ERSS, abnormal chondrocyte differentiation, and altered growth plate architecture also occur in mice expressing mutant collagen II and aggrecan. Alteration of the differentiation program in chondrocytes expressing unfolded or misfolded proteins may be part of an adaptive response that facilitates survival and recovery from the ensuing ER stress. However, the altered differentiation disrupts the highly coordinated events of endochondral ossification culminating in chondrodysplasia.

  7. Convergent Findings of Altered Functional and Structural Brain Connectivity in Individuals with High Functioning Autism: A Multimodal MRI Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Sophia; Keeser, Daniel; Samson, Andrea C; Kirsch, Valerie; Blautzik, Janusch; Grothe, Michel; Erat, Okan; Hegenloh, Michael; Coates, Ute; Reiser, Maximilian F; Hennig-Fast, Kristina; Meindl, Thomas

    2013-01-01

    Brain tissue changes in autism spectrum disorders seem to be rather subtle and widespread than anatomically distinct. Therefore a multimodal, whole brain imaging technique appears to be an appropriate approach to investigate whether alterations in white and gray matter integrity relate to consistent changes in functional resting state connectivity in individuals with high functioning autism (HFA). We applied diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), voxel-based morphometry (VBM) and resting state functional connectivity magnetic resonance imaging (fcMRI) to assess differences in brain structure and function between 12 individuals with HFA (mean age 35.5, SD 11.4, 9 male) and 12 healthy controls (mean age 33.3, SD 9.0, 8 male). Psychological measures of empathy and emotionality were obtained and correlated with the most significant DTI, VBM and fcMRI findings. We found three regions of convergent structural and functional differences between HFA participants and controls. The right temporo-parietal junction area and the left frontal lobe showed decreased fractional anisotropy (FA) values along with decreased functional connectivity and a trend towards decreased gray matter volume. The bilateral superior temporal gyrus displayed significantly decreased functional connectivity that was accompanied by the strongest trend of gray matter volume decrease in the temporal lobe of HFA individuals. FA decrease in the right temporo-parietal region was correlated with psychological measurements of decreased emotionality. In conclusion, our results indicate common sites of structural and functional alterations in higher order association cortex areas and may therefore provide multimodal imaging support to the long-standing hypothesis of autism as a disorder of impaired higher-order multisensory integration.

  8. Convergent Findings of Altered Functional and Structural Brain Connectivity in Individuals with High Functioning Autism: A Multimodal MRI Study.

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    Sophia Mueller

    Full Text Available Brain tissue changes in autism spectrum disorders seem to be rather subtle and widespread than anatomically distinct. Therefore a multimodal, whole brain imaging technique appears to be an appropriate approach to investigate whether alterations in white and gray matter integrity relate to consistent changes in functional resting state connectivity in individuals with high functioning autism (HFA. We applied diffusion tensor imaging (DTI, voxel-based morphometry (VBM and resting state functional connectivity magnetic resonance imaging (fcMRI to assess differences in brain structure and function between 12 individuals with HFA (mean age 35.5, SD 11.4, 9 male and 12 healthy controls (mean age 33.3, SD 9.0, 8 male. Psychological measures of empathy and emotionality were obtained and correlated with the most significant DTI, VBM and fcMRI findings. We found three regions of convergent structural and functional differences between HFA participants and controls. The right temporo-parietal junction area and the left frontal lobe showed decreased fractional anisotropy (FA values along with decreased functional connectivity and a trend towards decreased gray matter volume. The bilateral superior temporal gyrus displayed significantly decreased functional connectivity that was accompanied by the strongest trend of gray matter volume decrease in the temporal lobe of HFA individuals. FA decrease in the right temporo-parietal region was correlated with psychological measurements of decreased emotionality. In conclusion, our results indicate common sites of structural and functional alterations in higher order association cortex areas and may therefore provide multimodal imaging support to the long-standing hypothesis of autism as a disorder of impaired higher-order multisensory integration.

  9. Changes in skin levels of two neutotrophins (glial cell line derived neurotrohic factor and neurotrophin-3) cause alterations in cutaneous neuron responses to mechanical stimuli

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jeffrey Lawson; Sabrina L. Mcllwrath; H. Richard Koerber

    2008-01-01

    Neurotrophins are important for the development and maintenance of both high and low threshold mechanoreceptors (HTMRs and LTMRs). In this series of studies, the effects of constitutive overexpression of two different neurotrophins, neurotrophin-3 (NT-3) and glial cell line derived neurotrohic factor (GDNF), were examined. Previous studies indicated that both of them may be implicated in the normal development of mouse dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons. Neurons from mice transgenically altered to overexpress NT-3 or GDNF (NT-3-OE or GDNF-OE mice) in the skin were examined using several physiological, immunohistochemi-cal and molecular techniques. Ex vivo skin/nerve/DRG/spinal cord and skin/nerve preparations were used to determine the response characteristics of the cutaneous neurons; immunohistochemistry was used to examine the biochemical phenotype of DRG cells and the skin; RT-PCR was used to examine the levels of candidate ion channels in skin and DRG that may correlate with changes in physiologi-cal responses. In GDNF-OE mice, I-isolectin B4 (IB4)-immunopositive C-HTMRs (nociceptors), a large percentage of which are sensitive to GDNF, had significantly lower mechanical thresholds than wildtype (WT) neurons. Heat thresholds for the same cells were not different. Mechanical sensitivity changes in GDNF-OE mice were correlated with significant increases in acid sensing ion channels 2a (ASIC2a) and 2b (ASIC2b) and transient receptor potential channel AI (TRPAI), all of which are putative mechanosensitive ion channels. Overexpression of NT-3 affected the responses of A-LTMRs and A-HTMRs, hut had no effect on C-HTMRs. Slowly adapting type 1 (SA1) LTMRs and A-HTMRs had increased mechanical sensitivity compared to WT. Mechanical sensitivity was correlated with significant increases in acid-sensing ion channels ASIC1 and ASIC3. This data indicates that both neurotrophins play roles in determining mechanical thresholds of cutaneous HTMRs and LTMRs and that sensitivity

  10. Dynamic functional connectivity reveals altered variability in functional connectivity among patients with major depressive disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tornador, Cristian; Falcón, Carles; López‐Solà, Marina; Hernández‐Ribas, Rosa; Pujol, Jesús; Menchón, José M.; Ritter, Petra; Cardoner, Narcis; Soriano‐Mas, Carles; Deco, Gustavo

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Resting‐state fMRI (RS‐fMRI) has become a useful tool to investigate the connectivity structure of mental health disorders. In the case of major depressive disorder (MDD), recent studies regarding the RS‐fMRI have found abnormal connectivity in several regions of the brain, particularly in the default mode network (DMN). Thus, the relevance of the DMN to self‐referential thoughts and ruminations has made the use of the resting‐state approach particularly important for MDD. The majority of such research has relied on the grand averaged functional connectivity measures based on the temporal correlations between the BOLD time series of various brain regions. We, in our study, investigated the variations in the functional connectivity over time at global and local level using RS‐fMRI BOLD time series of 27 MDD patients and 27 healthy control subjects. We found that global synchronization and temporal stability were significantly increased in the MDD patients. Furthermore, the participants with MDD showed significantly increased overall average (static) functional connectivity (sFC) but decreased variability of functional connectivity (vFC) within specific networks. Static FC increased to predominance among the regions pertaining to the default mode network (DMN), while the decreased variability of FC was observed in the connections between the DMN and the frontoparietal network. Hum Brain Mapp 37:2918–2930, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:27120982

  11. Perfluorooctane sulfonate induces neuronal and oligodendrocytic differentiation in neural stem cells and alters the expression of PPARγ in vitro and in vivo

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wan Ibrahim, Wan Norhamidah, E-mail: hamidah@science.upm.edu.my [Department of Neuroscience, Karolinska Institutet, S-17177 Stockholm (Sweden); Tofighi, Roshan, E-mail: Roshan.Tofighi@ki.se [Department of Neuroscience, Karolinska Institutet, S-17177 Stockholm (Sweden); Onishchenko, Natalia, E-mail: Natalia.Onishchenko@ki.se [Department of Neuroscience, Karolinska Institutet, S-17177 Stockholm (Sweden); Rebellato, Paola, E-mail: Paola.Rebellato@ki.se [Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics, Karolinska Institutet, S-17177 Stockholm (Sweden); Bose, Raj, E-mail: Raj.Bose@ki.se [Department of Neuroscience, Karolinska Institutet, S-17177 Stockholm (Sweden); Uhlén, Per, E-mail: Per.Uhlen@ki.se [Department of Medical Biochemistry and Biophysics, Karolinska Institutet, S-17177 Stockholm (Sweden); Ceccatelli, Sandra, E-mail: Sandra.Ceccatelli@ki.se [Department of Neuroscience, Karolinska Institutet, S-17177 Stockholm (Sweden)

    2013-05-15

    Perfluorinated compounds are ubiquitous chemicals of major concern for their potential adverse effects on the human population. We have used primary rat embryonic neural stem cells (NSCs) to study the effects of perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) on the process of NSC spontaneous differentiation. Upon removal of basic fibroblast growth factor, NSCs were exposed to nanomolar concentrations of PFOS for 48 h, and then allowed to differentiate for additional 5 days. Exposure to 25 or 50 nM concentration resulted in a lower number of proliferating cells and a higher number of neurite-bearing TuJ1-positive cells, indicating an increase in neuronal differentiation. Exposure to 50 nM also significantly increased the number of CNPase-positive cells, pointing to facilitation of oligodendrocytic differentiation. PPAR genes have been shown to be involved in PFOS toxicity. By q-PCR we detected an upregulation of PPARγ with no changes in PPARα or PPARδ genes. One of the downstream targets of PPARs, the mitochondrial uncoupling protein 2 (UCP2) was also upregulated. The number of TuJ1- and CNPase-positive cells increased after exposure to PPARγ agonist rosiglitazone (RGZ, 3 μM) and decreased after pre-incubation with the PPARγ antagonist GW9662 (5 μM). RGZ also upregulated the expression of PPARγ and UCP2 genes. Meanwhile GW9662 abolished the UCP2 upregulation and decreased Ca{sup 2+} activity induced by PFOS. Interestingly, a significantly higher expression of PPARγ and UCP3 genes was also detected in mouse neonatal brain after prenatal exposure to PFOS. These data suggest that PPARγ plays a role in the alteration of spontaneous differentiation of NSCs induced by nanomolar concentrations of PFOS. - Highlights: • PFOS decreases proliferation of neural stem cells (NSCs). • PFOS induces neuronal and oligodendrocytic differentiation in NSCs. • PFOS alters expression of PPARγ and UCP2 in vitro. • PFOS alters expression of PPARγ and UCP3 in vivo. • Block of PPAR

  12. In vivo neuronal function of the fragile X mental retardation protein is regulated by phosphorylation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coffee, R Lane; Williamson, Ashley J; Adkins, Christopher M; Gray, Marisa C; Page, Terry L; Broadie, Kendal

    2012-02-15

    Fragile X syndrome (FXS), caused by loss of the Fragile X Mental Retardation 1 (FMR1) gene product (FMRP), is the most common heritable cause of intellectual disability and autism spectrum disorders. It has been long hypothesized that the phosphorylation of serine 500 (S500) in human FMRP controls its function as an RNA-binding translational repressor. To test this hypothesis in vivo, we employed neuronally targeted expression of three human FMR1 transgenes, including wild-type (hFMR1), dephosphomimetic (S500A-hFMR1) and phosphomimetic (S500D-hFMR1), in the Drosophila FXS disease model to investigate phosphorylation requirements. At the molecular level, dfmr1 null mutants exhibit elevated brain protein levels due to loss of translational repressor activity. This defect is rescued for an individual target protein and across the population of brain proteins by the phosphomimetic, whereas the dephosphomimetic phenocopies the null condition. At the cellular level, dfmr1 null synapse architecture exhibits increased area, branching and bouton number. The phosphomimetic fully rescues these synaptogenesis defects, whereas the dephosphomimetic provides no rescue. The presence of Futsch-positive (microtubule-associated protein 1B) supernumerary microtubule loops is elevated in dfmr1 null synapses. The human phosphomimetic restores normal Futsch loops, whereas the dephosphomimetic provides no activity. At the behavioral level, dfmr1 null mutants exhibit strongly impaired olfactory associative learning. The human phosphomimetic targeted only to the brain-learning center restores normal learning ability, whereas the dephosphomimetic provides absolutely no rescue. We conclude that human FMRP S500 phosphorylation is necessary for its in vivo function as a neuronal translational repressor and regulator of synaptic architecture, and for the manifestation of FMRP-dependent learning behavior.

  13. Pharmacological analysis of ionotropic glutamate receptor function in neuronal circuits of the zebrafish olfactory bulb.

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    Rico Tabor

    Full Text Available Although synaptic functions of ionotropic glutamate receptors in the olfactory bulb have been studied in vitro, their roles in pattern processing in the intact system remain controversial. We therefore examined the functions of ionotropic glutamate receptors during odor processing in the intact olfactory bulb of zebrafish using pharmacological manipulations. Odor responses of mitral cells and interneurons were recorded by electrophysiology and 2-photon Ca(2+ imaging. The combined blockade of AMPA/kainate and NMDA receptors abolished odor-evoked excitation of mitral cells. The blockade of AMPA/kainate receptors alone, in contrast, increased the mean response of mitral cells and decreased the mean response of interneurons. The blockade of NMDA receptors caused little or no change in the mean responses of mitral cells and interneurons. However, antagonists of both receptor types had diverse effects on the magnitude and time course of individual mitral cell and interneuron responses and, thus, changed spatio-temporal activity patterns across neuronal populations. Oscillatory synchronization was abolished or reduced by AMPA/kainate and NMDA receptor antagonists, respectively. These results indicate that (1 interneuron responses depend mainly on AMPA/kainate receptor input during an odor response, (2 interactions among mitral cells and interneurons regulate the total olfactory bulb output activity, (3 AMPA/kainate receptors participate in the synchronization of odor-dependent neuronal ensembles, and (4 ionotropic glutamate receptor-containing synaptic circuits shape odor-specific patterns of olfactory bulb output activity. These mechanisms are likely to be important for the processing of odor-encoding activity patterns in the olfactory bulb.

  14. Functional expression of the GABAA receptor alpha2 and alpha3 subunits at synapses between intercalated medial paracapsular neurons of mouse amygdala

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    Raffaella eGeracitano

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available In the amygdala, GABAergic neurons in the intercalated medial paracapsular cluster (Imp have been suggested to play a key role in fear learning and extinction. These neurons project to the central amygdaloid nucleus and to other areas within and outside the amygdala. In addition, they give rise to local collaterals that innervate other neurons in the Imp. Several drugs, including benzodiazepines, are allosteric modulators of GABA-A receptors. Benzodiazepines have both anxiolytic and sedative actions, which are mediated through GABA-A receptors containing alpha2/3 and alpha1 subunits, respectively. To establish whether alpha1 or alpha2/3 subunits are expressed at Imp cell synapses, we used paired recordings of anatomically-identified Imp neurons and high resolution immunocytochemistry in the mouse. We observed that a selective alpha3 subunit agonist, TP003 (100 nM, significantly increased the decay time constant of the unitary IPSCs. A similar effect was also induced by zolpidem (10 microM or by diazepam (1 microM. In contrast, lower doses of zolpidem (0.1-1 microM did not significantly alter the kinetics of the unitary IPSCs. Accordingly, immunocytochemical experiments established that the alpha2 and alpha3, but not the alpha1 subunits of the GABA-A receptors, were present at Imp cell synapses of the mouse amygdala. These results define, for the first time, some of the functional GABA-A receptor subunits expressed at synapses of Imp cells. The data also provide an additional rationale to prompt the search of GABA-A receptor alpha3 selective ligands as improved anxiolytic drugs.

  15. Synaptic function is modulated by LRRK2 and glutamate release is increased in cortical neurons of G2019S LRRK2 knock-in mice

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    Dayne A Beccano-Kelly

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Mutations in Leucine-Rich Repeat Kinase-2 (LRRK2 result in familial Parkinson’s disease and the G2019S mutation alone accounts for up to 30% in some ethnicities. Despite this, the function of LRRK2 is largely undetermined although evidence suggests roles in phosphorylation, protein interactions, autophagy and endocytosis. Emerging reports link loss of LRRK2 to altered synaptic transmission, but the effects of the G2019S mutation upon synaptic release in mammalian neurons are unknown. To assess wild type and mutant LRRK2 in established neuronal networks, we conducted immunocytochemical, electrophysiological and biochemical characterisation of >3 week old cortical cultures of LRRK2 knock-out, wild-type overexpressing and G2019S knock-in mice. Synaptic release and synapse numbers were grossly normal in LRRK2 knock-out cells, but discretely reduced glutamatergic activity and reduced synaptic protein levels were observed. Conversely, synapse density was modestly but significantly increased in wild-type LRRK2 overexpressing cultures although event frequency was not. In knock-in cultures, glutamate release was markedly elevated, in the absence of any change to synapse density; indicating that physiological levels of G2019S LRRK2 elevate probability of release. Several presynaptic regulatory proteins shown by others to interact with LRRK2 were expressed at normal levels in knock-in cultures; however, synapsin 1 phosphorylation was significantly reduced. Thus, perturbations to the presynaptic release machinery and elevated synaptic transmission are early neuronal effects of LRRK2 G2019S. Furthermore, the comparison of knock-in and overexpressing cultures suggests that one copy of the G2019S mutation has a more pronounced effect than an ~3-fold increase in LRRK2 protein. Mutant-induced increases in transmission may convey additional stressors to neuronal physiology that may eventually contribute to the pathogenesis of Parkinson’s disease.

  16. Altered Striatal Synaptic Function and Abnormal Behaviour in Shank3 Exon4-9 Deletion Mouse Model of Autism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaramillo, Thomas C; Speed, Haley E; Xuan, Zhong; Reimers, Jeremy M; Liu, Shunan; Powell, Craig M

    2016-03-01

    Shank3 is a multi-domain, synaptic scaffolding protein that organizes proteins in the postsynaptic density of excitatory synapses. Clinical studies suggest that ∼ 0.5% of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) cases may involve SHANK3 mutation/deletion. Patients with SHANK3 mutations exhibit deficits in cognition along with delayed/impaired speech/language and repetitive and obsessive/compulsive-like (OCD-like) behaviors. To examine how mutation/deletion of SHANK3 might alter brain function leading to ASD, we have independently created mice with deletion of Shank3 exons 4-9, a region implicated in ASD patients. We find that homozygous deletion of exons 4-9 (Shank3(e4-9) KO) results in loss of the two highest molecular weight isoforms of Shank3 and a significant reduction in other isoforms. Behaviorally, both Shank3(e4-9) heterozygous (HET) and Shank3(e4-9) KO mice display increased repetitive grooming, deficits in novel and spatial object recognition learning and memory, and abnormal ultrasonic vocalizations. Shank3(e4-9) KO mice also display abnormal social interaction when paired with one another. Analysis of synaptosome fractions from striata of Shank3(e4-9) KO mice reveals decreased Homer1b/c, GluA2, and GluA3 expression. Both Shank3(e4-9) HET and KO demonstrated a significant reduction in NMDA/AMPA ratio at excitatory synapses onto striatal medium spiny neurons. Furthermore, Shank3(e4-9) KO mice displayed reduced hippocampal LTP despite normal baseline synaptic transmission. Collectively these behavioral, biochemical and physiological changes suggest Shank3 isoforms have region-specific roles in regulation of AMPAR subunit localization and NMDAR function in the Shank3(e4-9) mutant mouse model of autism.

  17. Functional Alterations in Neural Substrates of Geometric Reasoning in Adults with High-Functioning Autism

    OpenAIRE

    Takashi Yamada; Haruhisa Ohta; Hiromi Watanabe; Chieko Kanai; Masayuki Tani; Taisei Ohno; Yuko Takayama; Akira Iwanami; Nobumasa Kato; Ryuichiro Hashimoto

    2012-01-01

    Individuals with autism spectrum condition (ASC) are known to excel in some perceptual cognitive tasks, but such developed functions have been often regarded as "islets of abilities" that do not significantly contribute to broader intellectual capacities. However, recent behavioral studies have reported that individuals with ASC have advantages for performing Raven's (Standard) Progressive Matrices (RPM/RSPM), a standard neuropsychological test for general fluid intelligence, raising the poss...

  18. Predator stress engages corticotropin-releasing factor and opioid systems to alter the operating mode of locus coeruleus norepinephrine neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Curtis, Andre L; Leiser, Steven C; Snyder, Kevin; Valentino, Rita J

    2012-03-01

    The norepinephrine nucleus, locus coeruleus (LC), has been implicated in cognitive aspects of the stress response, in part through its regulation by the stress-related neuropeptide, corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF). LC neurons discharge in tonic and phasic modes that differentially modulate attention and behavior. Here, the effects of exposure to an ethologically relevant stressor, predator odor, on spontaneous (tonic) and auditory-evoked (phasic) LC discharge were characterized in unanesthetized rats. Similar to the effects of CRF, stressor presentation increased tonic LC discharge and decreased phasic auditory-evoked discharge, thereby decreasing the signal-to-noise ratio of the sensory response. This stress-induced shift in LC discharge toward a high tonic mode was prevented by a CRF antagonist. Moreover, CRF antagonism during stress unmasked a large decrease in tonic discharge rate that was opioid mediated because it was prevented by pretreatment with the opiate antagonist, naloxone. Elimination of both CRF and opioid influences with an antagonist combination rendered LC activity unaffected by the stressor. These results demonstrate that both CRF and opioid afferents are engaged during stress to fine-tune LC activity. The predominant CRF influence shifts the operational mode of LC activity toward a high tonic state that is thought to facilitate behavioral flexibility and may be adaptive in coping with the stressor. Simultaneously, stress engages an opposing opioid influence that restrains the CRF influence and may facilitate recovery toward pre-stress levels of activity. Changes in the balance of CRF:opioid regulation of the LC could have consequences for stress vulnerability.

  19. Embryonic Cell Grafts in a Culture Model of Spinal Cord Lesion: Neuronal Relay Formation is Essential for Functional Regeneration

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    Anne Tscherter

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Presently there exists no cure for spinal cord injury. However, transplantation of embryonic tissue into spinal cord lesions resulted in axon outgrowth across the lesion site and some functional recovery, fostering hope for future stem cell therapies. Although in vivo evidence for functional recovery is given, the exact cellular mechanism of the graft support remains elusive: either the grafted cells provide a permissive environment for the host tissue to regenerate itself or the grafts actually integrate functionally into the host neuronal network reconnecting the separated spinal cord circuits. We tested the two hypotheses in an in vitro spinal cord lesion model that is based on propagation of activity between two rat organotypic spinal cord slices in culture. Transplantation of dissociated cells from E14 rat spinal cord or forebrain re-established the relay of activity over the lesion site and, thus, provoked functional regeneration. Combining patch-clamp recordings from transplanted cells with network activity measurements from the host tissue on multi-electrode arrays we here show that neurons differentiate from the grafted cells and integrate into the host circuits. Optogenetic silencing of neurons developed from transplanted embryonic mouse forebrain cells provides clear evidence that they replace the lost neuronal connections to relay and synchronize activity between the separated spinal cord circuits. In contrast, transplantation of neurospheres induced neither the differentiation of mature neurons from the grafts nor an improvement of functional regeneration. Together these findings suggest, that the formation of neuronal relays from grafted embryonic cells is essential to re-connect segregated spinal cord circuits.

  20. Altered balance of glutamatergic/GABAergic synaptic input and associated changes in dendrite morphology after BDNF expression in BDNF-deficient hippocampal neurons

    OpenAIRE

    Singh, B; Henneberger, C.; Betances, D.; Arevalo, M. A.; Rodriguez-Tebar, A.; Meier, J C; Grantyn, R.

    2006-01-01

    Cultured neurons from bdnf-/- mice display reduced densities of synaptic terminals, although in vivo these deficits are small or absent. Here we aimed at clarifying the local responses to postsynaptic brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). To this end, solitary enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP)-labeled hippocampal neurons from bdnf-/- mice were compared with bdnf-/- neurons after transfection with BDNF, bdnf-/- neurons after transient exposure to exogenous BDNF, and bdnf+/+ neurons...

  1. Functional endothelin receptors are selectively expressed in isolectin B4-negative sensory neurons and are upregulated in isolectin B4-positive neurons by neurturin and glia-derived neurotropic factor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vellani, Vittorio; Prandini, Massimiliano; Giacomoni, Chiara; Pavesi, Giorgia; Ravegnani, Laura; Magherini, Pier Cosimo

    2011-03-24

    Activation of endothelin receptors expressed in DRG neurons is functionally coupled to translocation of PKCε from cytoplasm to the plasma membrane. Using immunocytochemistry we show that in DRG cultured neurons PKCε translocation induced by endothelin-1 was prominently seen in a peptidergic subpopulation of cultured DRG neurons largely negative for isolectin B4 staining, indicating that in basal conditions functional expression of endothelin receptors does not occur in non-peptidergic, RET-expressing nociceptors. Translocation was blocked by the specific ETA-R antagonist BQ-123 while it was unaffected by the ETB-R antagonist BQ-788. No calcium response in response to endothelin-1 was observed in sensory neurons, while large and long-lasting responses were observed in the majority of non-neuronal cells present in DRG cultures, which are ensheathing Schwann cells and satellite cells, identified with the glial marker S-100. Calcium responses in non-neuronal cells were abolished by BQ-788. The fraction of peptidergic PKCε-translocated neurons was significantly increased by nerve growth factor, while in the presence of neurturin or glia-derived neurotropic factor (GDNF), an IB4-positive subpopulation of small- and medium-sized neurons showed PKCε translocation induced by endothelin-1 which could be blocked by BQ-123 but not by BQ-788. Our in vitro results show that the level of expression of functional endothelin receptors coupled to PKCε is different in peptidergic and non-peptidergic nociceptors and is modulated with different mechanisms in distinct neuronal subpopulations.

  2. HDL-S1P: cardiovascular functions, disease-associated alterations, and therapeutic applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levkau, Bodo

    2015-01-01

    Sphingosine-1-phosphate (S1P) is a bioactive sphingolipid contained in High-density lipoproteins (HDL) and has drawn considerable attention in the lipoprotein field as numerous studies have demonstrated its contribution to several functions inherent to HDL. Some of them are partly and some entirely due to the S1P contained in HDL (HDL-S1P). Despite the presence of over 1000 different lipids in HDL, S1P stands out as it possesses its own cell surface receptors through which it exercises key physiological functions. Most of the S1P in human plasma is associated with HDL, and the amount of HDL-S1P influences the quality and quantity of HDL-dependent functions. The main binding partner of S1P in HDL is apolipoprotein M but others may also exist particularly under conditions of acute S1P elevations. HDL not only exercise functions through their S1P content but have also an impact on genuine S1P signaling by influencing S1P bioactivity and receptor presentation. HDL-S1P content is altered in human diseases such as atherosclerosis, coronary artery disease, myocardial infarction, renal insufficiency and diabetes mellitus. Low HDL-S1P has also been linked to impaired HDL functions associated with these disorders. Although the pathophysiological and molecular reasons for such disease-associated shifts in HDL-S1P are little understood, there have been successful approaches to circumvent their adverse implications by pharmacologically increasing HDL-S1P as means to improve HDL function. This mini-review will cover the current understanding of the contribution of HDL-S1P to physiological HDL function, its alteration in disease and ways for its restoration to correct HDL dysfunction.

  3. Myocardial Perfusion and Function Are Distinctly Altered by Sevoflurane Anesthesia in Diet-Induced Prediabetic Rats

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    Charissa E. van den Brom

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Preservation of myocardial perfusion during surgery is particularly important in patients with increased risk for perioperative complications, such as diabetes. Volatile anesthetics, like sevoflurane, have cardiodepressive effects and may aggravate cardiovascular complications. We investigated the effect of sevoflurane on myocardial perfusion and function in prediabetic rats. Rats were fed a western diet (WD; n=18 or control diet (CD; n=18 for 8 weeks and underwent (contrast echocardiography to determine perfusion and function during baseline and sevoflurane exposure. Myocardial perfusion was estimated based on the product of microvascular filling velocity and blood volume. WD-feeding resulted in a prediabetic phenotype characterized by obesity, hyperinsulinemia, hyperlipidemia, glucose intolerance, and hyperglycemia. At baseline, WD-feeding impaired myocardial perfusion and systolic function compared to CD-feeding. Exposure of healthy rats to sevoflurane increased the microvascular filling velocity without altering myocardial perfusion but impaired systolic function. In prediabetic rats, sevoflurane did also not affect myocardial perfusion; however, it further impaired systolic function. Diet-induced prediabetes is associated with impaired myocardial perfusion and function in rats. While sevoflurane further impaired systolic function, it did not affect myocardial perfusion in prediabetic rats. Our findings suggest that sevoflurane anesthesia leads to uncoupling of myocardial perfusion and function, irrespective of the metabolic state.

  4. Myocardial Perfusion and Function Are Distinctly Altered by Sevoflurane Anesthesia in Diet-Induced Prediabetic Rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van den Brom, Charissa E; Boly, Chantal A; Bulte, Carolien S E; van den Akker, Rob F P; Kwekkeboom, Rick F J; Loer, Stephan A; Boer, Christa; Bouwman, R Arthur

    2016-01-01

    Preservation of myocardial perfusion during surgery is particularly important in patients with increased risk for perioperative complications, such as diabetes. Volatile anesthetics, like sevoflurane, have cardiodepressive effects and may aggravate cardiovascular complications. We investigated the effect of sevoflurane on myocardial perfusion and function in prediabetic rats. Rats were fed a western diet (WD; n = 18) or control diet (CD; n = 18) for 8 weeks and underwent (contrast) echocardiography to determine perfusion and function during baseline and sevoflurane exposure. Myocardial perfusion was estimated based on the product of microvascular filling velocity and blood volume. WD-feeding resulted in a prediabetic phenotype characterized by obesity, hyperinsulinemia, hyperlipidemia, glucose intolerance, and hyperglycemia. At baseline, WD-feeding impaired myocardial perfusion and systolic function compared to CD-feeding. Exposure of healthy rats to sevoflurane increased the microvascular filling velocity without altering myocardial perfusion but impaired systolic function. In prediabetic rats, sevoflurane did also not affect myocardial perfusion; however, it further impaired systolic function. Diet-induced prediabetes is associated with impaired myocardial perfusion and function in rats. While sevoflurane further impaired systolic function, it did not affect myocardial perfusion in prediabetic rats. Our findings suggest that sevoflurane anesthesia leads to uncoupling of myocardial perfusion and function, irrespective of the metabolic state.

  5. Late-stage neuronal progenitors in the retina are radial Müller glia that function as retinal stem cells.

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    Bernardos, Rebecca L; Barthel, Linda K; Meyers, Jason R; Raymond, Pamela A

    2007-06-27

    Neuronal progenitors in the mammalian brain derive from radial glia or specialized astrocytes. In developing neural retina, radial glia-like Müller cells are generated late in neurogenesis and are not considered to be neuronal progenitors, but they do proliferate after injury and can express neuronal markers, suggesting a latent neurogenic capacity. To examine the neurogenic capacity of retinal glial cells, we used lineage tracing in transgenic zebrafish with a glial-specific promoter (gfap, for glial fibrillary acid protein) driving green fluorescent protein in differentiated Müller glia. We found that all Müller glia in the zebrafish retina express low levels of the multipotent progenitor marker Pax6 (paired box gene 6), and they proliferate at a low frequency in the intact, uninjured retina. Müller glia-derived progenitors express Crx (cone rod homeobox) and are late retinal progenitors that generate the rod photoreceptor lineage in the postembryonic retina. These Müller glia-derived progenitors also remain competent to produce earlier neuronal lineages, in that they respond to loss of cone photoreceptors by specifically regenerating the missing neurons. We conclude that zebrafish Müller glia function as multipotent retinal stem cells that generate retinal neurons by homeostatic and regenerative developmental mechanisms.

  6. Potential structural and functional biomarkers of upper motor neuron dysfunction in ALS.

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    Grieve, Stuart M; Menon, Parvathi; Korgaonkar, Mayuresh S; Gomes, Lavier; Foster, Sheryl; Kiernan, Matthew C; Vucic, Steve

    2015-01-01

    Assessment of upper motor neuron (UMN) function in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) remains clinically based. Given the potential difficulties in identifying UMN signs, objective biomarkers of UMN dysfunction are important. Consequently, the present study assessed utility of cortical thickness analysis combined with threshold tracking transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) as biomakers of UMN dysfunction in ALS. Cortical thickness analysis and threshold tracking TMS studies were undertaken on 25 ALS patients and results were compared to healthy control subjects, with different control groups used for each technique. Structural and functional abnormalities were evident in both motor cortices in the ALS cohort and were heralded by marked reduction of short-interval intracortical inhibition (SICI RAPB 1.4 ± 2.4%; SICI LAPB 3.6 ± 1.9%; SICI CONTROLS10.5 ± 1.1%, p <0.01), resting motor threshold (p <0.05) and cortical silent period duration (p <0.001) combined with increase in MEP amplitude (p <0.05) and intracortical facilitation (p <0.05). Significant cortical thinning was evident in the bitemporal regions (p <0.05), while precentral gyrus cortical thinning was evident in 56% of cases and when combined with TMS abnormalities disclosed UMN dysfunction in 88% of cases. In conclusion, findings from the present study establish that a combination of structural and functional assessment of corticomotoneurons may increase the yield of objectively identifying UMN dysfunction in ALS.

  7. Play with online virtual pets as a method to improve mirror neuron and real world functioning in autistic children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Altschuler, Eric Lewin

    2008-01-01

    Autism is a severe disease with no known cause and no cure or treatment. Recently, ourselves and subsequently others found that so-called "mirror neurons" - neurons that respond not only when a person moves, but upon observation of movement in another - are dysfunctional in autistic children. Here I suggest an easy, simple, inexpensive and fun method to improve mirror neuron functioning in autistic children, increase appreciation in autistic children for the theory of mind and thinking of others, and most importantly hopefully to improve real world functioning: play with virtual online pets that are the "embodiment" of a stuffed animal the child has. Adoption and then care and play with online pets forces, in a fun way, one to think about the world through the eyes and needs of the pet. A simple method to test this play with online virtual pet therapy is described.

  8. Effects of Morphology Constraint on Electrophysiological Properties of Cortical Neurons

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    Zhu, Geng; Du, Liping; Jin, Lei; Offenhäusser, Andreas

    2016-04-01

    There is growing interest in engineering nerve cells in vitro to control architecture and connectivity of cultured neuronal networks or to build neuronal networks with predictable computational function. Pattern technologies, such as micro-contact printing, have been developed to design ordered neuronal networks. However, electrophysiological characteristics of the single patterned neuron haven’t been reported. Here, micro-contact printing, using polyolefine polymer (POP) stamps with high resolution, was employed to grow cortical neurons in a designed structure. The results demonstrated that the morphology of patterned neurons was well constrained, and the number of dendrites was decreased to be about 2. Our electrophysiological results showed that alterations of dendritic morphology affected firing patterns of neurons and neural excitability. When stimulated by current, though both patterned and un-patterned neurons presented regular spiking, the dynamics and strength of the response were different. The un-patterned neurons exhibited a monotonically increasing firing frequency in response to injected current, while the patterned neurons first exhibited frequency increase and then a slow decrease. Our findings indicate that the decrease in dendritic complexity of cortical neurons will influence their electrophysiological characteristics and alter their information processing activity, which could be considered when designing neuronal circuitries.

  9. Variant brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) (Met66) alters the intracellular trafficking and activity-dependent secretion of wild-type BDNF in neurosecretory cells and cortical neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Zhe-Yu; Patel, Paresh D; Sant, Gayatree; Meng, Chui-Xiang; Teng, Kenneth K; Hempstead, Barbara L; Lee, Francis S

    2004-05-05

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) plays a critical role in nervous system and cardiovascular development and function. Recently, a common single nucleotide polymorphism in the bdnf gene, resulting in a valine to methionine substitution in the prodomain (BDNF(Met)), has been shown to lead to memory impairment and susceptibility to neuropsychiatric disorders in humans heterozygous for the variant BDNF. When expressed by itself in hippocampal neurons, less BDNF(Met) is secreted in an activity-dependent manner. The nature of the cellular defect when both BDNF(Met) and wild-type BDNF (BDNF(Val)) are present in the same cell is not known. Given that this is the predominant expression profile in humans, we examined the effect of coexpressed BDNF(Met) on BDNF(Val) intracellular trafficking and processing. Our data indicate that abnormal trafficking of BDNF(Met) occurred only in neuronal and neurosecretory cells and that BDNF(Met) could alter the intracellular distribution and activity-dependent secretion of BDNF(Val). We determined that, when coexpressed in the same cell, approximately 70% of the variant BDNF forms BDNF(Val).BDNF(Met) heterodimers, which are inefficiently sorted into secretory granules resulting in a quantitative decreased secretion. Finally, we determined the form of BDNF secreted in an activity-dependent manner and observed no differences in the forms of BDNF(Met) or the BDNF(Val).BDNF(Met) heterodimer compared with BDNF(Val). Together, these findings indicate that components of the regulated secretory machinery interacts specifically with a signal in the BDNF prodomain and that perturbations in BDNF trafficking may lead to selective impairment in CNS function.

  10. Hierarchical alteration of brain structural and functional networks in female migraine sufferers.

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    Jixin Liu

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Little is known about the changes of brain structural and functional connectivity networks underlying the pathophysiology in migraine. We aimed to investigate how the cortical network reorganization is altered by frequent cortical overstimulation associated with migraine. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Gray matter volumes and resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging signal correlations were employed to construct structural and functional networks between brain regions in 43 female patients with migraine (PM and 43 gender-matched healthy controls (HC by using graph theory-based approaches. Compared with the HC group, the patients showed abnormal global topology in both structural and functional networks, characterized by higher mean clustering coefficients without significant change in the shortest absolute path length, which indicated that the PM lost optimal topological organization in their cortical networks. Brain hubs related to pain-processing revealed abnormal nodal centrality in both structural and functional networks, including the precentral gyrus, orbital part of the inferior frontal gyrus, parahippocampal gyrus, anterior cingulate gyrus, thalamus, temporal pole of the middle temporal gyrus and the inferior parietal gyrus. Negative correlations were found between migraine duration and regions with abnormal centrality. Furthermore, the dysfunctional connections in patients' cortical networks formed into a connected component and three dysregulated modules were identified involving pain-related information processing and motion-processing visual networks. CONCLUSIONS: Our results may reflect brain alteration dynamics resulting from migraine and suggest that long-term and high-frequency headache attacks may cause both structural and functional connectivity network reorganization. The disrupted information exchange between brain areas in migraine may be reshaped into a hierarchical modular structure progressively.

  11. Tissue-specific alterations in expression and function of P-glycoprotein in streptozotocininduced diabetic rats

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Lu-lu ZHANG; Guang-ji WANG; Lin XIE; Liang LU; Shi JIN; Xin-yue JING; Dan YAO; Nan HU; Li LIU; Ru DUAN; Xiao-dong LIU

    2011-01-01

    Aim: To investigate the changes of expression and function of P-glycoprotein (P-GP) in cerebral cortex, hippocampus, liver, intestinal mucosa and kidney of streptozocin-induced diabetic rats.Methods: Diabetic rats were prepared via a single dose of streptozocin (65 mg/kg, ip). Abcb1/P-GP mRNA and protein expression levels in tissues were evaluated using quantitative real time polymerase chain reaction (QRT-PCR) analysis and Western blot, respectively.P-GP function was investigated via measuring tissue-to-plasma concentration ratios and body fluid excretion percentages of rhodamine 123.Results: In 5- and 8-week diabetic rats, Abcb1a mRNA levels were significantly decreased in cerebral cortices and intestinal mucosa,but dramatically increased in hippocampus and kidney. In liver, the level was increased in 5-week diabetic rats, and decreased in 8-week diabetic rats. Abcb1b mRNA levels were increased in cerebral cortex, hippocampus and kidney, but reduced in liver and intestinal mucosa in the diabetic rats. Western blot results were in accordance with the alterations of Abcb1a mRNA levels in most tissues examined. P-GP activity was markedly decreased in most tissues of diabetic rats, except kidney tissues.Conclusion: Alterations in the expression and function of Abcb1/P-GP under diabetic conditions are tissue specific, Abcb1 specific and diabetic duration-dependent.

  12. From gut dysbiosis to altered brain function and mental illness: mechanisms and pathways

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    Rogers, G B; Keating, D J; Young, R L; Wong, M-L; Licinio, J; Wesselingh, S

    2016-01-01

    The human body hosts an enormous abundance and diversity of microbes, which perform a range of essential and beneficial functions. Our appreciation of the importance of these microbial communities to many aspects of human physiology has grown dramatically in recent years. We know, for example, that animals raised in a germ-free environment exhibit substantially altered immune and metabolic function, while the disruption of commensal microbiota in humans is associated with the development of a growing number of diseases. Evidence is now emerging that, through interactions with the gut–brain axis, the bidirectional communication system between the central nervous system and the gastrointestinal tract, the gut microbiome can also influence neural development, cognition and behaviour, with recent evidence that changes in behaviour alter gut microbiota composition, while modifications of the microbiome can induce depressive-like behaviours. Although an association between enteropathy and certain psychiatric conditions has long been recognized, it now appears that gut microbes represent direct mediators of psychopathology. Here, we examine roles of gut microbiome in shaping brain development and neurological function, and the mechanisms by which it can contribute to mental illness. Further, we discuss how the insight provided by this new and exciting field of research can inform care and provide a basis for the design of novel, microbiota-targeted, therapies. PMID:27090305

  13. Maternal Hyperleptinemia Is Associated with Male Offspring's Altered Vascular Function and Structure in Mice.

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    Kathleen A Pennington

    Full Text Available Children of mothers with gestational diabetes have greater risk of developing hypertension but little is known about the mechanisms by which this occurs. The objective of this study was to test the hypothesis that high maternal concentrations of leptin during pregnancy, which are present in mothers with gestational diabetes and/or obesity, alter blood pressure, vascular structure and vascular function in offspring. Wildtype (WT offspring of hyperleptinemic, normoglycemic, Leprdb/+ dams were compared to genotype matched offspring of WT-control dams. Vascular function was assessed in male offspring at 6, and at 31 weeks of age after half the offspring had been fed a high fat, high sucrose diet (HFD for 6 weeks. Blood pressure was increased by HFD but not affected by maternal hyperleptinemia. On a standard diet, offspring of hyperleptinemic dams had outwardly remodeled mesenteric arteries and an enhanced vasodilatory response to insulin. In offspring of WT but not Leprdb/+ dams, HFD induced vessel hypertrophy and enhanced vasodilatory responses to acetylcholine, while HFD reduced insulin responsiveness in offspring of hyperleptinemic dams. Offspring of hyperleptinemic dams had stiffer arteries regardless of diet. Therefore, while maternal hyperleptinemia was largely beneficial to offspring vascular health under a standard diet, it had detrimental effects in offspring fed HFD. These results suggest that circulating maternal leptin concentrations may interact with other factors in the pre- and post -natal environments to contribute to altered vascular function in offspring of diabetic pregnancies.

  14. Hydrogen sulfide regulates cardiovascular function by influencing the excitability of subfornical organ neurons.

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    Markus Kuksis

    Full Text Available Hydrogen sulfide (H2S, a gasotransmitter endogenously found in the central nervous system, has recently been suggested to act as a signalling molecule in the brain having beneficial effects on cardiovascular function. This study was thus undertaken to investigate the effect of NaHS (an H2S donor in the subfornical organ (SFO, a central nervous system site important to blood pressure regulation. We used male Sprague-Dawley rats for both in vivo and in vitro experiments. We first used RT-PCR to confirm our previous microarray analyses showing that mRNAs for the enzymes required to produce H2S are expressed in the SFO. We then used microinjection techniques to investigate the physiological effects of NaHS in SFO, and found that NaHS microinjection (5 nmol significantly increased blood pressure (mean AUC = 853.5±105.7 mmHg*s, n = 5. Further, we used patch-clamp electrophysiology and found that 97.8% (88 of 90 of neurons depolarized in response to NaHS. This response was found to be concentration dependent with an EC50 of 35.6 µM. Coupled with the depolarized membrane potential, we observed an overall increase in neuronal excitability using an analysis of rheobase and action potential firing patterns. This study has provided the first evidence of NaHS and thus H2S actions and their cellular correlates in SFO, implicating this brain area as a site where H2S may act to control blood pressure.

  15. Hydrogen sulfide regulates cardiovascular function by influencing the excitability of subfornical organ neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuksis, Markus; Smith, Pauline M; Ferguson, Alastair V

    2014-01-01

    Hydrogen sulfide (H2S), a gasotransmitter endogenously found in the central nervous system, has recently been suggested to act as a signalling molecule in the brain having beneficial effects on cardiovascular function. This study was thus undertaken to investigate the effect of NaHS (an H2S donor) in the subfornical organ (SFO), a central nervous system site important to blood pressure regulation. We used male Sprague-Dawley rats for both in vivo and in vitro experiments. We first used RT-PCR to confirm our previous microarray analyses showing that mRNAs for the enzymes required to produce H2S are expressed in the SFO. We then used microinjection techniques to investigate the physiological effects of NaHS in SFO, and found that NaHS microinjection (5 nmol) significantly increased blood pressure (mean AUC = 853.5±105.7 mmHg*s, n = 5). Further, we used patch-clamp electrophysiology and found that 97.8% (88 of 90) of neurons depolarized in response to NaHS. This response was found to be concentration dependent with an EC50 of 35.6 µM. Coupled with the depolarized membrane potential, we observed an overall increase in neuronal excitability using an analysis of rheobase and action potential firing patterns. This study has provided the first evidence of NaHS and thus H2S actions and their cellular correlates in SFO, implicating this brain area as a site where H2S may act to control blood pressure.

  16. Avalanche dynamics of idealized neuron function in the brain on an uncorrelated random scale-free network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, K. E.; Lee, J. W.

    2006-03-01

    We study a simple model for a neuron function in a collective brain system. The neural network is composed of an uncorrelated configuration model (UCM) for eliminating the degree correlation of dynamical processes. The interaction of neurons is assumed to be isotropic and idealized. These neuron dynamics are similar to biological evolution in extremal dynamics with locally isotropic interaction but has a different time scale. The functioning of neurons takes place as punctuated patterns based on avalanche dynamics. In our model, the avalanche dynamics of neurons exhibit self-organized criticality which shows power-law behavior of the avalanche sizes. For a given network, the avalanche dynamic behavior is not changed with different degree exponents of networks, γ≥2.4 and various refractory periods referred to the memory effect, Tr. Furthermore, the avalanche size distributions exhibit power-law behavior in a single scaling region in contrast to other networks. However, return time distributions displaying spatiotemporal complexity have three characteristic time scaling regimes Thus, we find that UCM may be inefficient for holding a memory.

  17. CO2-induced ocean acidification increases anxiety in rockfish via alteration of GABAA receptor functioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamilton, Trevor James; Holcombe, Adam; Tresguerres, Martin

    2014-01-22

    The average surface pH of the ocean is dropping at a rapid rate due to the dissolution of anthropogenic CO2, raising concerns for marine life. Additionally, some coastal areas periodically experience upwelling of CO2-enriched water with reduced pH. Previous research has demonstrated ocean acidification (OA)-induced changes in behavioural and sensory systems including olfaction, which is due to altered function of neural gamma-aminobutyric acid type A (GABAA) receptors. Here, we used a camera-based tracking software system to examine whether OA-dependent changes in GABAA receptors affect anxiety in juvenile Californian rockfish (Sebastes diploproa). Anxiety was estimated using behavioural tests that measure light/dark preference (scototaxis) and proximity to an object. After one week in OA conditions projected for the next century in the California shore (1125 ± 100 µatm, pH 7.75), anxiety was significantly increased relative to controls (483 ± 40 µatm CO2, pH 8.1). The GABAA-receptor agonist muscimol, but not the antagonist gabazine, caused a significant increase in anxiety consistent with altered Cl(-) flux in OA-exposed fish. OA-exposed fish remained more anxious even after 7 days back in control seawater; however, they resumed their normal behaviour by day 12. These results show that OA could severely alter rockfish behaviour; however, this effect is reversible.

  18. Renal Oxidative Stress Induced by Long-Term Hyperuricemia Alters Mitochondrial Function and Maintains Systemic Hypertension

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    Magdalena Cristóbal-García

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available We addressed if oxidative stress in the renal cortex plays a role in the induction of hypertension and mitochondrial alterations in hyperuricemia. A second objective was to evaluate whether the long-term treatment with the antioxidant Tempol prevents renal oxidative stress, mitochondrial alterations, and systemic hypertension in this model. Long-term (11-12 weeks and short-term (3 weeks effects of oxonic acid induced hyperuricemia were studied in rats (OA, 750 mg/kg BW, OA+Allopurinol (AP, 150 mg/L drinking water, OA+Tempol (T, 15 mg/kg BW, or vehicle. Systolic blood pressure, renal blood flow, and vascular resistance were measured. Tubular damage (urine N-acetyl-β-D-glucosaminidase and oxidative stress markers (lipid and protein oxidation along with ATP levels were determined in kidney tissue. Oxygen consumption, aconitase activity, and uric acid were evaluated in isolated mitochondria from renal cortex. Short-term hyperuricemia resulted in hypertension without demonstrable renal oxidative stress or mitochondrial dysfunction. Long-term hyperuricemia induced hypertension, renal vasoconstriction, tubular damage, renal cortex oxidative stress, and mitochondrial dysfunction and decreased ATP levels. Treatments with Tempol and allopurinol prevented these alterations. Renal oxidative stress induced by hyperuricemia promoted mitochondrial functional disturbances and decreased ATP content, which represent an additional pathogenic mechanism induced by chronic hyperuricemia. Hyperuricemia-related hypertension occurs before these changes are evident.

  19. Endomorphins delay constitutive apoptosis and alter the innate host defense functions of neutrophils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Azuma, Yasutaka; Ohura, Kiyoshi; Wang, Pao-Li; Shinohara, Mitsuko

    2002-04-01

    Recent studies have shown that opioid peptides are released from cells of the immune system during inflammation and stress, and are associated with altered immune responses. Moreover, concentrations of opioid peptides are increased in peripheral blood and at the sites of inflammatory reactions. The aim of this study was to evaluate immunological effects of opioid peptides endomorphins 1 and 2 on constitutive apoptosis, superoxide anion production, hydrogen peroxide production, adhesion, phagocytosis, and chemotaxis of neutrophils. Neutrophils were isolated by peritoneal lavage from rats. Endomorphins 1 and 2 significantly delayed constitutive neutrophil apoptosis. The delay of neutrophil apoptosis was markedly attenuated by LY294002, a phosphoinositide 3-kinase inhibitor. Moreover, endomorphins 1 and 2 activated the phosphoinositide 3-kinase pathway as determined by phosphorylation of BAD. In contrast, endomorphins 1 and 2 blocked the production of superoxide anion and hydrogen peroxide by PMA-stimulated neutrophils. In addition, endomorphins 1 and 2 inhibited neutrophil adhesion to fibronectin. Moreover, endomorphins 1 and 2 potentiated neutrophil chemotaxis toward zymosan-activated serum and IL-8, respectively. However, endomorphins 1 and 2 did not alter phagocytosis of Escherichia coli by neutrophils. These results suggest that endomorphins 1 and 2 may act to delay neutrophil apoptosis and alter the natural immune functions of neutrophils.

  20. Corticotropin-releasing factor receptors and stress-related alterations of gut motor function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taché, Yvette; Bonaz, Bruno

    2007-01-01

    Over the past few decades, corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) signaling pathways have been shown to be the main coordinators of the endocrine, behavioral, and immune responses to stress. Emerging evidence also links the activation of CRF receptors type 1 and type 2 with stress-related alterations of gut motor function. Here, we review the role of CRF receptors in both the brain and t