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Sample records for corazonin neurons function

  1. 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.

  2. Functional Characterization and Signaling Systems of Corazonin and Red Pigment Concentrating Hormone in the Green Shore Crab, Carcinus maenas

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    Jodi L. Alexander

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Neuropeptides play a central role as neurotransmitters, neuromodulators and hormones in orchestrating arthropod physiology. The post-genomic surge in identified neuropeptides and their putative receptors has not been matched by functional characterization of ligand-receptor pairs. Indeed, until very recently no G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs had been functionally defined in any crustacean. Here we explore the structurally-related, functionally-diverse gonadotropin-releasing hormone paralogs, corazonin (CRZ and red-pigment concentrating hormone (RPCH and their G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs in the crab, Carcinus maenas. Using aequorin luminescence to measure in vitro Ca2+ mobilization we demonstrated receptor-ligand pairings of CRZ and RPCH. CRZR-activated cell signaling in a dose-dependent manner (EC50 0.75 nM and comparative studies with insect CRZ peptides suggest that the C-terminus of this peptide is important in receptor-ligand interaction. RPCH interacted with RPCHR with extremely high sensitivity (EC50 20 pM. Neither receptor bound GnRH, nor the AKH/CRZ-related peptide. Transcript distributions of both receptors indicate that CRZR expression was, unexpectedly, restricted to the Y-organs (YO. Application of CRZ peptide to YO had no effect on ecdysteroid biosynthesis, excepting a modest stimulation in early post-molt. CRZ had no effect on heart activity, blood glucose levels, lipid mobilization or pigment distribution in chromatophores, a scenario that reflected the distribution of its mRNA. Apart from the well-known activity of RPCH as a chromatophorotropin, it also indirectly elicited hyperglycemia (which was eyestalk-dependent. RPCHR mRNA was also expressed in the ovary, indicating possible roles in reproduction. The anatomy of CRZ and RPCH neurons in the nervous system is described in detail by immunohistochemistry and in situ hybridization. Each peptide has extensive but non-overlapping distribution in the CNS, and neuroanatomy

  3. In search for a common denominator for the diverse functions of arthropod corazonin: a role in the physiology of stress?

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    Boerjan, Bart; Verleyen, Peter; Huybrechts, Jurgen; Schoofs, Liliane; De Loof, Arnold

    2010-04-01

    Corazonin (Crz) is an 11 amino acid C-terminally amidated neuropeptide that has been identified in most arthropods examined with the notable exception of beetles and an aphid. The Crz-receptor shares sequence similarity to the GnRH-AKH receptor family thus suggesting an ancestral function related to the control of reproduction and metabolism. In 1989, Crz was purified and identified as a potent cardioaccelerating agent in cockroaches (hence the Crz name based on "corazon", the Spanish word for "heart"). Since the initial assignment as a cardioacceleratory peptide, additional functions have been discovered, ranging from pigment migration in the integument of crustaceans and in the eye of locusts, melanization of the locust cuticle, ecdysis initiation and in various aspects of gregarization in locusts. The high degree of structural conservation of Crz, its well-conserved (immuno)-localization, mainly in specific neurosecretory cells in the pars lateralis, and its many functions, suggest that Crz is vital. Yet, Crz-deficient insects develop normally. Upon reexamining all known effects of Crz, a hypothesis was developed that the evolutionary ancient function of Crz may have been "to prepare animals for coping with the environmental stressors of the day". This function would then complement the role of pigment-dispersing factor (PDF), the prime hormonal effector of the clock, which is thought "to set a coping mechanism for the night". (c) 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Identified peptidergic neurons in the Drosophila brain regulate insulin-producing cells, stress responses and metabolism by coexpressed short neuropeptide F and corazonin.

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    Kapan, Neval; Lushchak, Oleh V; Luo, Jiangnan; Nässel, Dick R

    2012-12-01

    Insulin/IGF-like signaling regulates the development, growth, fecundity, metabolic homeostasis, stress resistance and lifespan in worms, flies and mammals. Eight insulin-like peptides (DILP1-8) are found in Drosophila. Three of these (DILP2, 3 and 5) are produced by a set of median neurosecretory cells (insulin-producing cells, IPCs) in the brain. Activity in the IPCs of adult flies is regulated by glucose and several neurotransmitters and neuropeptides. One of these, short neuropeptide F (sNPF), regulates food intake, growth and Dilp transcript levels in IPCs via the sNPF receptor (sNPFR1) expressed on IPCs. Here we identify a set of brain neurons that utilizes sNPF to activate the IPCs. These sNPF-expressing neurons (dorsal lateral peptidergic neurons, DLPs) also produce the neuropeptide corazonin (CRZ) and have axon terminations impinging on IPCs. Knockdown of either sNPF or CRZ in DLPs extends survival in flies exposed to starvation and alters carbohydrate and lipid metabolism. Expression of sNPF in DLPs in the sNPF mutant background is sufficient to rescue wild-type metabolism and response to starvation. Since CRZ receptor RNAi in IPCs affects starvation resistance and metabolism, similar to peptide knockdown in DLPs, it is likely that also CRZ targets the IPCs. Knockdown of sNPF, but not CRZ in DLPs decreases transcription of Dilp2 and 5 in the brain, suggesting different mechanisms of action on IPCs of the two co-released peptides. Our findings indicate that sNPF and CRZ co-released from a small set of neurons regulate IPCs, stress resistance and metabolism in adult Drosophila.

  5. Essential role of grim-led programmed cell death for the establishment of corazonin-producing peptidergic nervous system during embryogenesis and metamorphosis in Drosophila melanogaster

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    Gyunghee Lee

    2013-01-01

    In Drosophila melanogaster, combinatorial activities of four death genes, head involution defective (hid, reaper (rpr, grim, and sickle (skl, have been known to play crucial roles in the developmentally regulated programmed cell death (PCD of various tissues. However, different expression patterns of the death genes also suggest distinct functions played by each. During early metamorphosis, a great number of larval neurons unfit for adult life style are removed by PCD. Among them are eight pairs of corazonin-expressing larval peptidergic neurons in the ventral nerve cord (vCrz. To reveal death genes responsible for the PCD of vCrz neurons, we examined extant and recently available mutations as well as RNA interference that disrupt functions of single or multiple death genes. We found grim as a chief proapoptotic gene and skl and rpr as minor ones. The function of grim is also required for PCD of the mitotic sibling cells of the vCrz neuronal precursors (EW3-sib during embryonic neurogenesis. An intergenic region between grim and rpr, which, it has been suggested, may enhance expression of three death genes in embryonic neuroblasts, appears to play a role for the vCrz PCD, but not for the EW3-sib cell death. The death of vCrz neurons and EW3-sib is triggered by ecdysone and the Notch signaling pathway, respectively, suggesting distinct regulatory mechanisms of grim expression in a cell- and developmental stage-specific manner.

  6. Corazonin Signaling Is Required in the Male for Sperm Transfer in the Oriental Fruit Fly Bactrocera dorsalis

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    Qiu-Li Hou

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Corazonin (Crz is a widely distributed neuropeptide (or neurohormone in insects with diverse physiological functions. The present study aimed to reveal the functions of Crz and its receptor (CrzR in the regulation of sexual behavior and fertility in male Bactrocera dorsalis. Tissue-specific expression analyses showed that the BdCrz transcript was most abundant in the central nervous system (CNS, and the BdCrzR transcript was most abundant in both the fat body and CNS. Immunochemical localization confirmed that three pairs of Crz-immunoreactive neurons are located in the dorsolateral protocerebrum region of male adult brain. Importantly, RNAi-mediated Crz knockdown lengthened mating duration in males, and knockdown of Crz or CrzR strongly decreased male fertility in the following 3 days, while the courtship behavior and mating efficiency were not affected. The reduced number of sperm in the reproductive organs of mated females indicated that Crz knockdown in males reduced sperm transfer. The findings of this study indicate that Crz contributes to the reproductive physiology of the oriental fruit fly B. dorsalis by regulating sperm transfer in male adults.

  7. Distribution of corazonin and pigment-dispersing factor in the cephalic ganglia of termites.

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    Závodská, Radka; Wen, Chih-Jen; Hrdý, Ivan; Sauman, Ivo; Lee, How-Jing; Sehnal, Frantisek

    2008-07-01

    Distribution of neurones detectable with antisera to the corazonin (Crz) and the pigment-dispersing factor (PDF) was mapped in the workers or pseudergates of 10 species representing six out of seven termite families. All species contained two triads of Crz-immunoreactive (Crz-ir) neurones in the protocerebrum. Their fibres were linked to the opposite hemisphere, formed a network in the fronto-lateral protocerebrum, and projected to the corpora cardiaca (CC); in most species the fibres also supplied the deuto- and tritocerebrum and the frontal ganglion. Some species possessed additional Crz-ir perikarya in the protocerebrum and the suboesophageal ganglion (SOG). The PDF-ir somata were primarily located in the optic lobe (OL) and SOG. OL harboured a group (3 groups in Coptotermes) of 2-6 PDF-ir cells with processes extending to the medulla, connecting to the contralateral OL, forming 1-2 networks in the protocerebrum, and in most species running also to CC. Such a PDF-ir system associated with the OL was missing in Reticulitermes. Except for Mastotermes, the termites contained 1-2 PDF-ir cell pairs in the SOG and two species had additional perikarya in the protocerebrum. The results are consistent with the view of a monophyletic termite origin and demonstrate how the Crz-ir and PDF-ir systems diversified in the course of termite phylogeny.

  8. Mirror neurons: From origin to function

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    Cook, R; Bird, G; Catmur, C; Press, C; Heyes, C

    2014-01-01

    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...

  9. Interaction function of coupled bursting neurons

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shi Xia; Zhang Jiadong

    2016-01-01

    The interaction functions of electrically coupled Hindmarsh–Rose (HR) neurons for different firing patterns are investigated in this paper. By applying the phase reduction technique, the phase response curve (PRC) of the spiking neuron and burst phase response curve (BPRC) of the bursting neuron are derived. Then the interaction function of two coupled neurons can be calculated numerically according to the PRC (or BPRC) and the voltage time course of the neurons. Results show that the BPRC is more and more complicated with the increase of the spike number within a burst, and the curve of the interaction function oscillates more and more frequently with it. However, two certain things are unchanged: ϕ = 0, which corresponds to the in-phase synchronization state, is always the stable equilibrium, while the anti-phase synchronization state with ϕ = 0.5 is an unstable equilibrium. (paper)

  10. Neuronal coherence and its functional role in communication between neurons

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    Zeitler-Geurds, M.

    2010-01-01

    Neuronal oscillations are observed in many brain areas in various frequency bands. Each of the frequency bands is associated with a particular functional role. Gamma oscillations (30-80 Hz) are thought to be related to cognitive tasks like memory and attention and possibly also involved in the

  11. 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.

  12. 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. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Fine-scale mapping of natural variation in fly fecundity identifies neuronal domain of expression and function of an aquaporin.

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    Alan O Bergland

    Full Text Available To gain insight into the molecular genetic basis of standing variation in fitness related traits, we identify a novel factor that regulates the molecular and physiological basis of natural variation in female Drosophila melanogaster fecundity. Genetic variation in female fecundity in flies derived from a wild orchard population is heritable and largely independent of other measured life history traits. We map a portion of this variation to a single QTL and then use deficiency mapping to further refine this QTL to 5 candidate genes. Ubiquitous expression of RNAi against only one of these genes, an aquaporin encoded by Drip, reduces fecundity. Within our mapping population Drip mRNA level in the head, but not other tissues, is positively correlated with fecundity. We localize Drip expression to a small population of corazonin producing neurons located in the dorsolateral posterior compartments of the protocerebrum. Expression of Drip-RNAi using both the pan-neuronal ELAV-Gal4 and the Crz-Gal4 drivers reduces fecundity. Low-fecundity RILs have decreased Crz expression and increased expression of pale, the enzyme encoding the rate-limiting step in the production of dopamine, a modulator of insect life histories. Taken together these data suggest that natural variation in Drip expression in the corazonin producing neurons contributes to standing variation in fitness by altering the concentration of two neurohormones.

  14. Toward functional classification of neuronal types.

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    Sharpee, Tatyana O

    2014-09-17

    How many types of neurons are there in the brain? This basic neuroscience question remains unsettled despite many decades of research. Classification schemes have been proposed based on anatomical, electrophysiological, or molecular properties. However, different schemes do not always agree with each other. This raises the question of whether one can classify neurons based on their function directly. For example, among sensory neurons, can a classification scheme be devised that is based on their role in encoding sensory stimuli? Here, theoretical arguments are outlined for how this can be achieved using information theory by looking at optimal numbers of cell types and paying attention to two key properties: correlations between inputs and noise in neural responses. This theoretical framework could help to map the hierarchical tree relating different neuronal classes within and across species. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. The transfer function of neuron spike.

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    Palmieri, Igor; Monteiro, Luiz H A; Miranda, Maria D

    2015-08-01

    The mathematical modeling of neuronal signals is a relevant problem in neuroscience. The complexity of the neuron behavior, however, makes this problem a particularly difficult task. Here, we propose a discrete-time linear time-invariant (LTI) model with a rational function in order to represent the neuronal spike detected by an electrode located in the surroundings of the nerve cell. The model is presented as a cascade association of two subsystems: one that generates an action potential from an input stimulus, and one that represents the medium between the cell and the electrode. The suggested approach employs system identification and signal processing concepts, and is dissociated from any considerations about the biophysical processes of the neuronal cell, providing a low-complexity alternative to model the neuronal spike. The model is validated by using in vivo experimental readings of intracellular and extracellular signals. A computational simulation of the model is presented in order to assess its proximity to the neuronal signal and to observe the variability of the estimated parameters. The implications of the results are discussed in the context of spike sorting. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Magnocellular Neurons and Posterior Pituitary Function.

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    Brown, Colin H

    2016-09-15

    The posterior pituitary gland secretes oxytocin and vasopressin (the antidiuretic hormone) into the blood system. Oxytocin is required for normal delivery of the young and for delivery of milk to the young during lactation. Vasopressin increases water reabsorption in the kidney to maintain body fluid balance and causes vasoconstriction to increase blood pressure. Oxytocin and vasopressin secretion occurs from the axon terminals of magnocellular neurons whose cell bodies are principally found in the hypothalamic supraoptic nucleus and paraventricular nucleus. The physiological functions of oxytocin and vasopressin depend on their secretion, which is principally determined by the pattern of action potentials initiated at the cell bodies. Appropriate secretion of oxytocin and vasopressin to meet the challenges of changing physiological conditions relies mainly on integration of afferent information on reproductive, osmotic, and cardiovascular status with local regulation of magnocellular neurons by glia as well as intrinsic regulation by the magnocellular neurons themselves. This review focuses on the control of magnocellular neuron activity with a particular emphasis on their regulation by reproductive function, body fluid balance, and cardiovascular status. © 2016 American Physiological Society. Compr Physiol 6:1701-1741, 2016. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

  17. Evolution of the AKH/corazonin/ACP/GnRH receptor superfamily and their ligands in the Protostomia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hauser, Frank; Grimmelikhuijzen, Cornelis

    2014-01-01

    In this review we trace the evolutionary connections between GnRH receptors from vertebrates and the receptors for adipokinetic hormone (AKH), AKH/corazonin-related peptide (ACP), and corazonin from arthropods. We conclude that these G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) are closely related and hav......QLTFSSDWSGamide), and the penis worm Priapulus caudatus (pQIFFSKGWRGamide). This is the first report, showing that AKH signaling is widespread in molluscs....

  18. Astrocyte-neuron communication: functional consequences.

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    Ben Achour, Sarrah; Pascual, Olivier

    2012-11-01

    Astrocyte-neuron communication has recently been proposed as a potential mechanism participating to synaptic transmission. With the development of this concept and accumulating evidences in favor of a modulation of synaptic transmission by astrocytes, has emerged the term gliotransmission. It refers to the capacity of astrocytes to release various transmitters, such as ATP, glutamate, D-serine, and GABA in the vicinity of synapses. While the cellular mechanisms involved in gliotransmission still need to be better described and, for some, identified, the aim of more and more studies is to determine the role of astrocytes from a functional point of view. This review will summarize the principal studies that have investigated a potential role of astrocytes in the various functions regulated by the brain (sleep, breathing, perception, learning and memory…). This will allow us to highlight the similarities and discrepancies in the signaling pathways involved in the different areas of the brain related to these functions.

  19. The neuron identity problem: form meets function.

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    Fishell, Gord; Heintz, Nathaniel

    2013-10-30

    A complete understanding of nervous system function cannot be achieved without the identification of its component cell types. In this Perspective, we explore a series of related issues surrounding cell identity and how revolutionary methods for labeling and probing specific neuronal types have clarified this question. Specifically, we ask the following questions: what is the purpose of such diversity, how is it generated, how is it maintained, and, ultimately, how can one unambiguously identity one cell type from another? We suggest that each cell type can be defined by a unique and conserved molecular ground state that determines its capabilities. We believe that gaining an understanding of these molecular barcodes will advance our ability to explore brain function, enhance our understanding of the biochemical basis of CNS disorders, and aid in the development of novel therapeutic strategies. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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

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    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.

  1. Role of neuronal activity in regulating the structure and function of auditory neurons

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Born, D.E.

    1986-01-01

    The role of afferent activity in maintaining neuronal structure and function was investigated in second order auditory neurons in nucleus magnocellularis (NM) of the chicken. The cochlea provides the major excitatory input to NM neurons via the eighth nerve. Removal of the cochlea causes dramatic changes in NM neurons. To determine if the elimination of neuronal activity is responsible for the changes in NM seen after cochlea removal, tetrodotoxin was used block action potentials in the cochlear ganglion cells. Tetrodotoxin injections into the perilymph reliably blocked neuronal activity in the cochlear nerve and NM. Far field recordings of sound-evoked potentials revealed that responses returned within 6 hours. Changes in amino acid incorporation in NM neurons were measured by giving intracardiac injections of 3 H-leucine and preparing tissue for autoradiographic demonstration of incorporated amino acid. Grain counts over individual neurons revealed that a single injection of tetrodotoxin produced a 40% decrease in grain density in ipsilateral NM neurons. It is concluded that neuronal activity plays an important contribution to the maintenance of the normal properties of NM neurons

  2. Chemically Functionalized Carbon Nanotubes as Substrates for Neuronal Growth

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    Hu, Hui; Ni, Yingchun; Montana, Vedrana; Haddon, Robert C.; Parpura, Vladimir

    2009-01-01

    We report the use of chemically modified carbon nanotubes as a substrate for cultured neurons. The morphological features of neurons that directly reflect their potential capability in synaptic transmission are characterized. The chemical properties of carbon nanotubes are systematically varied by attaching different functional groups that confer known characteristics to the substrate. By manipulating the charge carried by functionalized carbon nanotubes we are able to control the outgrowth and branching pattern of neuronal processes. PMID:21394241

  3. Neuronal medium that supports basic synaptic functions and activity of human neurons in vitro.

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    Bardy, Cedric; van den Hurk, Mark; Eames, Tameji; Marchand, Cynthia; Hernandez, Ruben V; Kellogg, Mariko; Gorris, Mark; Galet, Ben; Palomares, Vanessa; Brown, Joshua; Bang, Anne G; Mertens, Jerome; Böhnke, Lena; Boyer, Leah; Simon, Suzanne; Gage, Fred H

    2015-05-19

    Human cell reprogramming technologies offer access to live human neurons from patients and provide a new alternative for modeling neurological disorders in vitro. Neural electrical activity is the essence of nervous system function in vivo. Therefore, we examined neuronal activity in media widely used to culture neurons. We found that classic basal media, as well as serum, impair action potential generation and synaptic communication. To overcome this problem, we designed a new neuronal medium (BrainPhys basal + serum-free supplements) in which we adjusted the concentrations of inorganic salts, neuroactive amino acids, and energetic substrates. We then tested that this medium adequately supports neuronal activity and survival of human neurons in culture. Long-term exposure to this physiological medium also improved the proportion of neurons that were synaptically active. The medium was designed to culture human neurons but also proved adequate for rodent neurons. The improvement in BrainPhys basal medium to support neurophysiological activity is an important step toward reducing the gap between brain physiological conditions in vivo and neuronal models in vitro.

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

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    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.

  5. Neuronal medium that supports basic synaptic functions and activity of human neurons in vitro

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bardy, C.; Hurk, M. van den; Eames, T.; Marchand, C.; Hernandez, R.V.; Kellogg, M.; Gorris, M.A.J.; Galet, B.; Palomares, V.; Brown, J.; Bang, A.G.; Mertens, J.; Bohnke, L.; Boyer, L.; Simon, S.; Gage, F.H.

    2015-01-01

    Human cell reprogramming technologies offer access to live human neurons from patients and provide a new alternative for modeling neurological disorders in vitro. Neural electrical activity is the essence of nervous system function in vivo. Therefore, we examined neuronal activity in media widely

  6. Dicer maintains the identity and function of proprioceptive sensory neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Toole, Sean M; Ferrer, Monica M; Mekonnen, Jennifer; Zhang, Haihan; Shima, Yasuyuki; Ladle, David R; Nelson, Sacha B

    2017-03-01

    Neuronal cell identity is established during development and must be maintained throughout an animal's life (Fishell G, Heintz N. Neuron 80: 602-612, 2013). Transcription factors critical for establishing neuronal identity can be required for maintaining it (Deneris ES, Hobert O. Nat Neurosci 17: 899-907, 2014). Posttranscriptional regulation also plays an important role in neuronal differentiation (Bian S, Sun T. Mol Neurobiol 44: 359-373, 2011), but its role in maintaining cell identity is less established. To better understand how posttranscriptional regulation might contribute to cell identity, we examined the proprioceptive neurons in the dorsal root ganglion (DRG), a highly specialized sensory neuron class, with well-established properties that distinguish them from other neurons in the ganglion. By conditionally ablating Dicer in mice, using parvalbumin (Pvalb)-driven Cre recombinase, we impaired posttranscriptional regulation in the proprioceptive sensory neuron population. Knockout (KO) animals display a progressive form of ataxia at the beginning of the fourth postnatal week that is accompanied by a cell death within the DRG. Before cell loss, expression profiling shows a reduction of proprioceptor specific genes and an increased expression of nonproprioceptive genes normally enriched in other ganglion neurons. Furthermore, although central connections of these neurons are intact, the peripheral connections to the muscle are functionally impaired. Posttranscriptional regulation is therefore necessary to retain the transcriptional identity and support functional specialization of the proprioceptive sensory neurons. NEW & NOTEWORTHY We have demonstrated that selectively impairing Dicer in parvalbumin-positive neurons, which include the proprioceptors, triggers behavioral changes, a lack of muscle connectivity, and a loss of transcriptional identity as observed through RNA sequencing. These results suggest that Dicer and, most likely by extension, micro

  7. Regulatory Mechanisms Controlling Maturation of Serotonin Neuron Identity and Function.

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    Spencer, William C; Deneris, Evan S

    2017-01-01

    The brain serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine; 5-HT) system has been extensively studied for its role in normal physiology and behavior, as well as, neuropsychiatric disorders. The broad influence of 5-HT on brain function, is in part due to the vast connectivity pattern of 5-HT-producing neurons throughout the CNS. 5-HT neurons are born and terminally specified midway through embryogenesis, then enter a protracted period of maturation, where they functionally integrate into CNS circuitry and then are maintained throughout life. The transcriptional regulatory networks controlling progenitor cell generation and terminal specification of 5-HT neurons are relatively well-understood, yet the factors controlling 5-HT neuron maturation are only recently coming to light. In this review, we first provide an update on the regulatory network controlling 5-HT neuron development, then delve deeper into the properties and regulatory strategies governing 5-HT neuron maturation. In particular, we discuss the role of the 5-HT neuron terminal selector transcription factor (TF) Pet-1 as a key regulator of 5-HT neuron maturation. Pet-1 was originally shown to positively regulate genes needed for 5-HT synthesis, reuptake and vesicular transport, hence 5-HT neuron-type transmitter identity. It has now been shown to regulate, both positively and negatively, many other categories of genes in 5-HT neurons including ion channels, GPCRs, transporters, neuropeptides, and other transcription factors. Its function as a terminal selector results in the maturation of 5-HT neuron excitability, firing characteristics, and synaptic modulation by several neurotransmitters. Furthermore, there is a temporal requirement for Pet-1 in the control of postmitotic gene expression trajectories thus indicating a direct role in 5-HT neuron maturation. Proper regulation of the maturation of cellular identity is critical for normal neuronal functioning and perturbations in the gene regulatory networks controlling

  8. Layer 5 Callosal Parvalbumin-Expressing Neurons: A Distinct Functional Group of GABAergic Neurons.

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    Zurita, Hector; Feyen, Paul L C; Apicella, Alfonso Junior

    2018-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that parvalbumin-expressing neurons (CC-Parv neurons) connect the two hemispheres of motor and sensory areas via the corpus callosum, and are a functional part of the cortical circuit. Here we test the hypothesis that layer 5 CC-Parv neurons possess anatomical and molecular mechanisms which dampen excitability and modulate the gating of interhemispheric inhibition. In order to investigate this hypothesis we use viral tracing to determine the anatomical and electrophysiological properties of layer 5 CC-Parv and parvalbumin-expressing (Parv) neurons of the mouse auditory cortex (AC). Here we show that layer 5 CC-Parv neurons had larger dendritic fields characterized by longer dendrites that branched farther from the soma, whereas layer 5 Parv neurons had smaller dendritic fields characterized by shorter dendrites that branched nearer to the soma. The layer 5 CC-Parv neurons are characterized by delayed action potential (AP) responses to threshold currents, lower firing rates, and lower instantaneous frequencies compared to the layer 5 Parv neurons. Kv1.1 containing K + channels are the main source of the AP repolarization of the layer 5 CC-Parv and have a major role in determining both the spike delayed response, firing rate and instantaneous frequency of these neurons.

  9. Axonal regeneration and neuronal function are preserved in motor neurons lacking ß-actin in vivo.

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    Thomas R Cheever

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available The proper localization of ß-actin mRNA and protein is essential for growth cone guidance and axon elongation in cultured neurons. In addition, decreased levels of ß-actin mRNA and protein have been identified in the growth cones of motor neurons cultured from a mouse model of Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA, suggesting that ß-actin loss-of-function at growth cones or pre-synaptic nerve terminals could contribute to the pathogenesis of this disease. However, the role of ß-actin in motor neurons in vivo and its potential relevance to disease has yet to be examined. We therefore generated motor neuron specific ß-actin knock-out mice (Actb-MNsKO to investigate the function of ß-actin in motor neurons in vivo. Surprisingly, ß-actin was not required for motor neuron viability or neuromuscular junction maintenance. Skeletal muscle from Actb-MNsKO mice showed no histological indication of denervation and did not significantly differ from controls in several measurements of physiologic function. Finally, motor axon regeneration was unimpaired in Actb-MNsKO mice, suggesting that ß-actin is not required for motor neuron function or regeneration in vivo.

  10. Functional circuits of new neurons in the dentate gyrus

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    Carmen eVivar

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available The hippocampus is crucial for memory formation. New neurons are added throughout life to the hippocampal dentate gyrus (DG, a brain area considered important for differential storage of similar experiences and contexts. To better understand the functional contribution of adult neurogenesis to pattern separation processes, we recently used a novel synapse specific trans-neuronal tracing approach to identify the (sub cortical inputs to new dentate granule cells. It was observed that newly born neurons receive sequential innervation from structures important for memory function. Initially, septal-hippocampal cells provide input to new neurons, followed after about one month by perirhinal and lateral entorhinal cortex. These cortical areas are deemed relevant to encoding of novel environmental information and may enable pattern separation. Here, we review the developmental time-course and proposed functional relevance of new neurons, within the context of their unique neural circuitry.  

  11. Soft chitosan microbeads scaffold for 3D functional neuronal networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tedesco, Maria Teresa; Di Lisa, Donatella; Massobrio, Paolo; Colistra, Nicolò; Pesce, Mattia; Catelani, Tiziano; Dellacasa, Elena; Raiteri, Roberto; Martinoia, Sergio; Pastorino, Laura

    2018-02-01

    The availability of 3D biomimetic in vitro neuronal networks of mammalian neurons represents a pivotal step for the development of brain-on-a-chip experimental models to study neuronal (dys)functions and particularly neuronal connectivity. The use of hydrogel-based scaffolds for 3D cell cultures has been extensively studied in the last years. However, limited work on biomimetic 3D neuronal cultures has been carried out to date. In this respect, here we investigated the use of a widely popular polysaccharide, chitosan (CHI), for the fabrication of a microbead based 3D scaffold to be coupled to primary neuronal cells. CHI microbeads were characterized by optical and atomic force microscopies. The cell/scaffold interaction was deeply characterized by transmission electron microscopy and by immunocytochemistry using confocal microscopy. Finally, a preliminary electrophysiological characterization by micro-electrode arrays was carried out. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Multivesicular Bodies in Neurons: Distribution, Protein Content, and Trafficking Functions

    Science.gov (United States)

    VON BARTHELD, CHRISTOPHER S.; ALTICK, AMY L.

    2011-01-01

    Summary Multivesicular bodies (MVBs) are intracellular endosomal organelles characterized by multiple internal vesicles that are enclosed within a single outer membrane. MVBs were initially regarded as purely prelysosomal structures along the degradative endosomal pathway of internalized proteins. MVBs are now known to be involved in numerous endocytic and trafficking functions, including protein sorting, recycling, transport, storage, and release. This review of neuronal MVBs summarizes their research history, morphology, distribution, accumulation of cargo and constitutive proteins, transport, and theories of functions of MVBs in neurons and glia. Due to their complex morphologies, neurons have expanded trafficking and signaling needs, beyond those of “geometrically simpler” cells, but it is not known whether neuronal MVBs perform additional transport and signaling functions. This review examines the concept of compartment-specific MVB functions in endosomal protein trafficking and signaling within synapses, axons, dendrites and cell bodies. We critically evaluate reports of the accumulation of neuronal MVBs based on evidence of stress-induced MVB formation. Furthermore, we discuss potential functions of neuronal and glial MVBs in development, in dystrophic neuritic syndromes, injury, disease, and aging. MVBs may play a role in Alzheimer’s, Huntington’s, and Niemann-Pick diseases, some types of frontotemporal dementia, prion and virus trafficking, as well as in adaptive responses of neurons to trauma and toxin or drug exposure. Functions of MVBs in neurons have been much neglected, and major gaps in knowledge currently exist. Developing truly MVB-specific markers would help to elucidate the roles of neuronal MVBs in intra- and intercellular signaling of normal and diseased neurons. PMID:21216273

  13. 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.

    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.

  14. Beyond Neuronal Activity Markers: Select Immediate Early Genes in Striatal Neuron Subtypes Functionally Mediate Psychostimulant Addiction

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    Ramesh Chandra

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Immediate early genes (IEGs were traditionally used as markers of neuronal activity in striatum in response to stimuli including drugs of abuse such as psychostimulants. Early studies using these neuronal activity markers led to important insights in striatal neuron subtype responsiveness to psychostimulants. Such studies have helped identify striatum as a critical brain center for motivational, reinforcement and habitual behaviors in psychostimulant addiction. While the use of IEGs as neuronal activity markers in response to psychostimulants and other stimuli persists today, the functional role and implications of these IEGs has often been neglected. Nonetheless, there is a subset of research that investigates the functional role of IEGs in molecular, cellular and behavioral alterations by psychostimulants through striatal medium spiny neuron (MSN subtypes, the two projection neuron subtypes in striatum. This review article will address and highlight the studies that provide a functional mechanism by which IEGs mediate psychostimulant molecular, cellular and behavioral plasticity through MSN subtypes. Insight into the functional role of IEGs in striatal MSN subtypes could provide improved understanding into addiction and neuropsychiatric diseases affecting striatum, such as affective disorders and compulsive disorders characterized by dysfunctional motivation and habitual behavior.

  15. Toxoplasma gondii Actively Inhibits Neuronal Function in Chronically Infected Mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haroon, Fahad; Händel, Ulrike; Angenstein, Frank; Goldschmidt, Jürgen; Kreutzmann, Peter; Lison, Holger; Fischer, Klaus-Dieter; Scheich, Henning; Wetzel, Wolfram; Schlüter, Dirk; Budinger, Eike

    2012-01-01

    Upon infection with the obligate intracellular parasite Toxoplasma gondii, fast replicating tachyzoites infect a broad spectrum of host cells including neurons. Under the pressure of the immune response, tachyzoites convert into slow-replicating bradyzoites, which persist as cysts in neurons. Currently, it is unclear whether T. gondii alters the functional activity of neurons, which may contribute to altered behaviour of T. gondii–infected mice and men. In the present study we demonstrate that upon oral infection with T. gondii cysts, chronically infected BALB/c mice lost over time their natural fear against cat urine which was paralleled by the persistence of the parasite in brain regions affecting behaviour and odor perception. Detailed immunohistochemistry showed that in infected neurons not only parasitic cysts but also the host cell cytoplasm and some axons stained positive for Toxoplasma antigen suggesting that parasitic proteins might directly interfere with neuronal function. In fact, in vitro live cell calcium (Ca2+) imaging studies revealed that tachyzoites actively manipulated Ca2+ signalling upon glutamate stimulation leading either to hyper- or hypo-responsive neurons. Experiments with the endoplasmatic reticulum Ca2+ uptake inhibitor thapsigargin indicate that tachyzoites deplete Ca2+ stores in the endoplasmatic reticulum. Furthermore in vivo studies revealed that the activity-dependent uptake of the potassium analogue thallium was reduced in cyst harbouring neurons indicating their functional impairment. The percentage of non-functional neurons increased over time In conclusion, both bradyzoites and tachyzoites functionally silence infected neurons, which may significantly contribute to the altered behaviour of the host. PMID:22530040

  16. Toxoplasma gondii actively inhibits neuronal function in chronically infected mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fahad Haroon

    Full Text Available Upon infection with the obligate intracellular parasite Toxoplasma gondii, fast replicating tachyzoites infect a broad spectrum of host cells including neurons. Under the pressure of the immune response, tachyzoites convert into slow-replicating bradyzoites, which persist as cysts in neurons. Currently, it is unclear whether T. gondii alters the functional activity of neurons, which may contribute to altered behaviour of T. gondii-infected mice and men. In the present study we demonstrate that upon oral infection with T. gondii cysts, chronically infected BALB/c mice lost over time their natural fear against cat urine which was paralleled by the persistence of the parasite in brain regions affecting behaviour and odor perception. Detailed immunohistochemistry showed that in infected neurons not only parasitic cysts but also the host cell cytoplasm and some axons stained positive for Toxoplasma antigen suggesting that parasitic proteins might directly interfere with neuronal function. In fact, in vitro live cell calcium (Ca(2+ imaging studies revealed that tachyzoites actively manipulated Ca(2+ signalling upon glutamate stimulation leading either to hyper- or hypo-responsive neurons. Experiments with the endoplasmatic reticulum Ca(2+ uptake inhibitor thapsigargin indicate that tachyzoites deplete Ca(2+ stores in the endoplasmatic reticulum. Furthermore in vivo studies revealed that the activity-dependent uptake of the potassium analogue thallium was reduced in cyst harbouring neurons indicating their functional impairment. The percentage of non-functional neurons increased over time In conclusion, both bradyzoites and tachyzoites functionally silence infected neurons, which may significantly contribute to the altered behaviour of the host.

  17. Building functional networks of spiking model neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abbott, L F; DePasquale, Brian; Memmesheimer, Raoul-Martin

    2016-03-01

    Most of the networks used by computer scientists and many of those studied by modelers in neuroscience represent unit activities as continuous variables. Neurons, however, communicate primarily through discontinuous spiking. We review methods for transferring our ability to construct interesting networks that perform relevant tasks from the artificial continuous domain to more realistic spiking network models. These methods raise a number of issues that warrant further theoretical and experimental study.

  18. 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.

  19. Myostatin-like proteins regulate synaptic function and neuronal morphology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Augustin, Hrvoje; McGourty, Kieran; Steinert, Joern R; Cochemé, Helena M; Adcott, Jennifer; Cabecinha, Melissa; Vincent, Alec; Halff, Els F; Kittler, Josef T; Boucrot, Emmanuel; Partridge, Linda

    2017-07-01

    Growth factors of the TGFβ superfamily play key roles in regulating neuronal and muscle function. Myostatin (or GDF8) and GDF11 are potent negative regulators of skeletal muscle mass. However, expression of myostatin and its cognate receptors in other tissues, including brain and peripheral nerves, suggests a potential wider biological role. Here, we show that Myoglianin (MYO), the Drosophila homolog of myostatin and GDF11, regulates not only body weight and muscle size, but also inhibits neuromuscular synapse strength and composition in a Smad2-dependent manner. Both myostatin and GDF11 affected synapse formation in isolated rat cortical neuron cultures, suggesting an effect on synaptogenesis beyond neuromuscular junctions. We also show that MYO acts in vivo to inhibit synaptic transmission between neurons in the escape response neural circuit of adult flies. Thus, these anti-myogenic proteins act as important inhibitors of synapse function and neuronal growth. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  20. Extracting functionally feedforward networks from a population of spiking neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vincent, Kathleen; Tauskela, Joseph S; Thivierge, Jean-Philippe

    2012-01-01

    Neuronal avalanches are a ubiquitous form of activity characterized by spontaneous bursts whose size distribution follows a power-law. Recent theoretical models have replicated power-law avalanches by assuming the presence of functionally feedforward connections (FFCs) in the underlying dynamics of the system. Accordingly, avalanches are generated by a feedforward chain of activation that persists despite being embedded in a larger, massively recurrent circuit. However, it is unclear to what extent networks of living neurons that exhibit power-law avalanches rely on FFCs. Here, we employed a computational approach to reconstruct the functional connectivity of cultured cortical neurons plated on multielectrode arrays (MEAs) and investigated whether pharmacologically induced alterations in avalanche dynamics are accompanied by changes in FFCs. This approach begins by extracting a functional network of directed links between pairs of neurons, and then evaluates the strength of FFCs using Schur decomposition. In a first step, we examined the ability of this approach to extract FFCs from simulated spiking neurons. The strength of FFCs obtained in strictly feedforward networks diminished monotonically as links were gradually rewired at random. Next, we estimated the FFCs of spontaneously active cortical neuron cultures in the presence of either a control medium, a GABA(A) receptor antagonist (PTX), or an AMPA receptor antagonist combined with an NMDA receptor antagonist (APV/DNQX). The distribution of avalanche sizes in these cultures was modulated by this pharmacology, with a shallower power-law under PTX (due to the prominence of larger avalanches) and a steeper power-law under APV/DNQX (due to avalanches recruiting fewer neurons) relative to control cultures. The strength of FFCs increased in networks after application of PTX, consistent with an amplification of feedforward activity during avalanches. Conversely, FFCs decreased after application of APV

  1. Disruption of astrocyte-neuron cholesterol cross talk affects neuronal function in Huntington's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valenza, M; Marullo, M; Di Paolo, E; Cesana, E; Zuccato, C; Biella, G; Cattaneo, E

    2015-04-01

    In the adult brain, neurons require local cholesterol production, which is supplied by astrocytes through apoE-containing lipoproteins. In Huntington's disease (HD), such cholesterol biosynthesis in the brain is severely reduced. Here we show that this defect, occurring in astrocytes, is detrimental for HD neurons. Astrocytes bearing the huntingtin protein containing increasing CAG repeats secreted less apoE-lipoprotein-bound cholesterol in the medium. Conditioned media from HD astrocytes and lipoprotein-depleted conditioned media from wild-type (wt) astrocytes were equally detrimental in a neurite outgrowth assay and did not support synaptic activity in HD neurons, compared with conditions of cholesterol supplementation or conditioned media from wt astrocytes. Molecular perturbation of cholesterol biosynthesis and efflux in astrocytes caused similarly altered astrocyte-neuron cross talk, whereas enhancement of glial SREBP2 and ABCA1 function reversed the aspects of neuronal dysfunction in HD. These findings indicate that astrocyte-mediated cholesterol homeostasis could be a potential therapeutic target to ameliorate neuronal dysfunction in HD.

  2. Analyzing the structure and function of neuronal circuits in zebrafish

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rainer eFriedrich

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The clever choice of animal models has been instrumental for many breakthrough discoveries in life sciences. One of the outstanding challenges in neuroscience is the in-depth analysis of neuronal circuits to understand how interactions between large numbers of neurons give rise to the computational power of the brain. A promising model organism to address this challenge is the zebrafish, not only because it is cheap, transparent and accessible to sophisticated genetic manipulations but also because it offers unique advantages for quantitative analyses of circuit structure and function. One of the most important advantages of zebrafish is its small brain size, both at larval and adult stages. Small brains enable exhaustive measurements of neuronal activity patterns by optical imaging and facilitate large-scale reconstructions of wiring diagrams by electron microscopic approaches. Such information is important, and probably essential, to obtain mechanistic insights into neuronal computations underlying higher brain functions and dysfunctions. This review provides a brief overview over current methods and motivations for dense reconstructions of neuronal activity and connectivity patterns. It then discusses selective advantages of zebrafish and provides examples how these advantages are exploited to study neuronal computations in the olfactory bulb.

  3. Pharmacological Bypass of Cockayne Syndrome B Function in Neuronal Differentiation

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    Yuming Wang

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Cockayne syndrome (CS is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by growth abnormalities, premature aging, and photosensitivity. Mutation of Cockayne syndrome B (CSB affects neuronal gene expression and differentiation, so we attempted to bypass its function by expressing downstream target genes. Intriguingly, ectopic expression of Synaptotagmin 9 (SYT9, a key component of the machinery controlling neurotrophin release, bypasses the need for CSB in neuritogenesis. Importantly, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF, a neurotrophin implicated in neuronal differentiation and synaptic modulation, and pharmacological mimics such as 7,8-dihydroxyflavone and amitriptyline can compensate for CSB deficiency in cell models of neuronal differentiation as well. SYT9 and BDNF are downregulated in CS patient brain tissue, further indicating that sub-optimal neurotrophin signaling underlies neurological defects in CS. In addition to shedding light on cellular mechanisms underlying CS and pointing to future avenues for pharmacological intervention, these data suggest an important role for SYT9 in neuronal differentiation.

  4. Extracting neuronal functional network dynamics via adaptive Granger causality analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheikhattar, Alireza; Miran, Sina; Liu, Ji; Fritz, Jonathan B; Shamma, Shihab A; Kanold, Patrick O; Babadi, Behtash

    2018-04-24

    Quantifying the functional relations between the nodes in a network based on local observations is a key challenge in studying complex systems. Most existing time series analysis techniques for this purpose provide static estimates of the network properties, pertain to stationary Gaussian data, or do not take into account the ubiquitous sparsity in the underlying functional networks. When applied to spike recordings from neuronal ensembles undergoing rapid task-dependent dynamics, they thus hinder a precise statistical characterization of the dynamic neuronal functional networks underlying adaptive behavior. We develop a dynamic estimation and inference paradigm for extracting functional neuronal network dynamics in the sense of Granger, by integrating techniques from adaptive filtering, compressed sensing, point process theory, and high-dimensional statistics. We demonstrate the utility of our proposed paradigm through theoretical analysis, algorithm development, and application to synthetic and real data. Application of our techniques to two-photon Ca 2+ imaging experiments from the mouse auditory cortex reveals unique features of the functional neuronal network structures underlying spontaneous activity at unprecedented spatiotemporal resolution. Our analysis of simultaneous recordings from the ferret auditory and prefrontal cortical areas suggests evidence for the role of rapid top-down and bottom-up functional dynamics across these areas involved in robust attentive behavior.

  5. Functional characterisation of filamentous actin probe expression in neuronal cells.

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    Shrujna Patel

    Full Text Available Genetically encoded filamentous actin probes, Lifeact, Utrophin and F-tractin, are used as tools to label the actin cytoskeleton. Recent evidence in several different cell types indicates that these probes can cause changes in filamentous actin dynamics, altering cell morphology and function. Although these probes are commonly used to visualise actin dynamics in neurons, their effects on axonal and dendritic morphology has not been systematically characterised. In this study, we quantitatively analysed the effect of Lifeact, Utrophin and F-tractin on neuronal morphogenesis in primary hippocampal neurons. Our data show that the expression of actin-tracking probes significantly impacts on axonal and dendrite growth these neurons. Lifeact-GFP expression, under the control of a pBABE promoter, caused a significant decrease in total axon length, while another Lifeact-GFP expression, under the control of a CAG promoter, decreased the length and complexity of dendritic trees. Utr261-EGFP resulted in increased dendritic branching but Utr230-EGFP only accumulated in cell soma, without labelling any neurites. Lifeact-7-mEGFP and F-tractin-EGFP in a pEGFP-C1 vector, under the control of a CMV promoter, caused only minor changes in neuronal morphology as detected by Sholl analysis. The results of this study demonstrate the effects that filamentous actin tracking probes can have on the axonal and dendritic compartments of neuronal cells and emphasise the care that must be taken when interpreting data from experiments using these probes.

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. Relating neuronal firing patterns to functional differentiation of cerebral cortex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shigeru Shinomoto

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available It has been empirically established that the cerebral cortical areas defined by Brodmann one hundred years ago solely on the basis of cellular organization are closely correlated to their function, such as sensation, association, and motion. Cytoarchitectonically distinct cortical areas have different densities and types of neurons. Thus, signaling patterns may also vary among cytoarchitectonically unique cortical areas. To examine how neuronal signaling patterns are related to innate cortical functions, we detected intrinsic features of cortical firing by devising a metric that efficiently isolates non-Poisson irregular characteristics, independent of spike rate fluctuations that are caused extrinsically by ever-changing behavioral conditions. Using the new metric, we analyzed spike trains from over 1,000 neurons in 15 cortical areas sampled by eight independent neurophysiological laboratories. Analysis of firing-pattern dissimilarities across cortical areas revealed a gradient of firing regularity that corresponded closely to the functional category of the cortical area; neuronal spiking patterns are regular in motor areas, random in the visual areas, and bursty in the prefrontal area. Thus, signaling patterns may play an important role in function-specific cerebral cortical computation.

  9. Decreased function of survival motor neuron protein impairs endocytic pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dimitriadi, Maria; Derdowski, Aaron; Kalloo, Geetika; Maginnis, Melissa S; O'Hern, Patrick; Bliska, Bryn; Sorkaç, Altar; Nguyen, Ken C Q; Cook, Steven J; Poulogiannis, George; Atwood, Walter J; Hall, David H; Hart, Anne C

    2016-07-26

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is caused by depletion of the ubiquitously expressed survival motor neuron (SMN) protein, with 1 in 40 Caucasians being heterozygous for a disease allele. SMN is critical for the assembly of numerous ribonucleoprotein complexes, yet it is still unclear how reduced SMN levels affect motor neuron function. Here, we examined the impact of SMN depletion in Caenorhabditis elegans and found that decreased function of the SMN ortholog SMN-1 perturbed endocytic pathways at motor neuron synapses and in other tissues. Diminished SMN-1 levels caused defects in C. elegans neuromuscular function, and smn-1 genetic interactions were consistent with an endocytic defect. Changes were observed in synaptic endocytic proteins when SMN-1 levels decreased. At the ultrastructural level, defects were observed in endosomal compartments, including significantly fewer docked synaptic vesicles. Finally, endocytosis-dependent infection by JC polyomavirus (JCPyV) was reduced in human cells with decreased SMN levels. Collectively, these results demonstrate for the first time, to our knowledge, that SMN depletion causes defects in endosomal trafficking that impair synaptic function, even in the absence of motor neuron cell death.

  10. 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.

  11. Functional discriminant method and neuronal net

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Minh-Quan Tran.

    1993-02-01

    The ZEUS detector at the ep storage ring HERA at DESY is equipped with a 3 level trigger system. This enormous effort is necessary to fight against the high proton beamgas background that was estimated to be at the level of 100 kHz. In this thesis two methods were investigated to calculate a trigger decision from a set of various trigger parameters. The Functional Discriminant Analysis evalutes a decision parameter that is optimized by means of a linear algebra technic. A method is shown how to determine the most important trigger parameters. A 'feed forward' neuralnetwork was analyzed in order to allow none lineare cuts in the n dimensinal configuration space spanned by the trigger parameters. The error back propagation method was used to teach the neural network. It is shown that both decision methods are able to abstract the important characteristics of event samples. As soon as they are tought they will seperate events from these classes even though they were not part of the training sample. (orig.) [de

  12. Complete functional characterization of sensory neurons by system identification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Michael C-K; David, Stephen V; Gallant, Jack L

    2006-01-01

    System identification is a growing approach to sensory neurophysiology that facilitates the development of quantitative functional models of sensory processing. This approach provides a clear set of guidelines for combining experimental data with other knowledge about sensory function to obtain a description that optimally predicts the way that neurons process sensory information. This prediction paradigm provides an objective method for evaluating and comparing computational models. In this chapter we review many of the system identification algorithms that have been used in sensory neurophysiology, and we show how they can be viewed as variants of a single statistical inference problem. We then review many of the practical issues that arise when applying these methods to neurophysiological experiments: stimulus selection, behavioral control, model visualization, and validation. Finally we discuss several problems to which system identification has been applied recently, including one important long-term goal of sensory neuroscience: developing models of sensory systems that accurately predict neuronal responses under completely natural conditions.

  13. 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.

  14. Functional diversity of supragranular GABAergic neurons in the barrel cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luc J Gentet

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Although the neocortex forms a distributed system comprised of several functional areas, its vertical columnar organization is largely conserved across areas and species, suggesting the existence of a canonical neocortical microcircuit. In order to elucidate the principles governing the organization of such a cortical diagram, a detailed understanding of the dynamics binding different types of cortical neurons into a coherent algorithm is essential. Within this complex circuitry, GABAergic interneurons, while forming approximately only 15-20% of all cortical neurons, appear critical in maintaining a dynamic balance between excitation and inhibition. Despite their importance, cortical GABAergic neurons have not been extensively studied in vivo and their precise role in shaping the local microcircuit sensory response still remains to be determined. Their paucity, combined with their molecular, anatomical and physiological diversity, has made it difficult to even establish a consensual nomenclature.However, recent technological advances in microscopy and mouse genetics have fostered a renewed interest in neocortical interneurons by putting them within visible reach of experimenters. The anatomically well-defined whisker-to-barrel pathway of the rodent is particularly amenable to studies attempting to link cortical circuit dynamics to behavior. To each whisker corresponds a discrete cortical unit equivalent to a single column, specialized in the encoding and processing of the sensory information it receives. In this review, we will focus on the functional role that each subtype of supragranular GABAergic neuron embedded within such a single neocortical unit may play in shaping the dynamics of the local circuit during somatosensory integration.

  15. Toxic effects of lead on neuronal development and function

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Freedman, R.; Olson, L.; Hoffer, B.J.

    1990-01-01

    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

  16. Stimulus-response functions of single avian olfactory bulb neurones.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKeegan, Dorothy E F; Demmers, Theodorus G M; Wathes, Christopher M; Jones, R Bryan; Gentle, Michael J

    2002-10-25

    This study investigated olfactory processing in a functional context by examining the responses of single avian olfactory bulb neurones to two biologically important gases over relevant concentration ranges. Recordings of extracellular spike activity were made from 80 single units in the left olfactory bulb of 11 anaesthetised, freely breathing adult hens (Gallus domesticus). The units were spontaneously active, exhibiting widely variable firing rates (0.07-47.28 spikes/s) and variable temporal firing patterns. Single units were tested for their response to an ascending concentration series of either ammonia (2.5-100 ppm) or hydrogen sulphide (1-50 ppm), delivered directly to the olfactory epithelium. Stimulation with a calibrated gas delivery system resulted in modification of spontaneous activity causing either inhibition (47% of units) or excitation (53%) of firing. For ammonia, 20 of the 35 units tested exhibited a response, while for hydrogen sulphide, 25 of the 45 units tested were responsive. Approximate response thresholds for ammonia (median threshold 3.75 ppm (range 2.5-60 ppm, n=20)) and hydrogen sulphide (median threshold 1 ppm (range 1-10 ppm, n=25)) were determined with most units exhibiting thresholds near the lower end of these ranges. Stimulus response curves were constructed for 23 units; 16 (the most complete) were subjected to a linear regression analysis to determine whether they were best fitted by a linear, log or power function. No single function provided the best fit for all the curves (seven were linear, eight were log, one was power). These findings show that avian units respond to changes in stimulus concentration in a manner generally consistent with reported responses in mammalian olfactory bulb neurones. However, this study illustrates a level of fine-tuning to small step changes in concentration (<5 ppm) not previously demonstrated in vertebrate single olfactory bulb neurones.

  17. Neurons the decision makers, Part I: The firing function of a single neuron.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saaty, Thomas

    2017-02-01

    This paper is concerned with understanding synthesis of electric signals in the neural system based on making pairwise comparisons. Fundamentally, every person and every animal are born with the talent to compare stimuli from things that share properties in space or over time. Comparisons always need experience to distinguish among things. Pairwise comparisons are numerically reciprocal. If a value is assigned to the larger of two elements that have a given property when compared with the smaller one, then the smaller has the reciprocal of that value when compared with the larger. Because making comparisons requires the reciprocal property, we need mathematics that can cope with division. There are four division algebras that would allow us to use our reciprocals arising from comparisons: The real numbers, the complex numbers, the non-commutative quaternions and the non-associative octonions. Rather than inferring function as from electric flow in a network, in this paper we infer the flow from function. Neurons fire in response to stimuli and their firings vary relative to the intensities of the stimuli. We believe neurons use some kind of pairwise comparison mechanism to determine when to fire based on the stimuli they receive. The ideas we develop here about flows are used to deduce how a system based on this kind of firing determination works and can be described. Furthermore the firing of neurons requires continuous comparisons. To develop a formula describing the output of these pairwise comparisons requires solving Fredholm's equation of the second kind which is satisfied if and only if a simple functional equation has solutions. The Fourier transform of the real solution of this equation leads to inverse square laws like those that are common in physics. The Fourier transform applied to a complex valued solution leads to Dirac type of firings. Such firings are dense in the very general fields of functions known as Sobolev spaces and thus can be used to

  18. Neuronal Function in Male Sprague Dawley Rats During Normal Ageing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Idowu, A J; Olatunji-Bello, I I; Olagunju, J A

    2017-03-06

    During normal ageing, there are physiological changes especially in high energy demanding tissues including the brain and skeletal muscles. Ageing may disrupt homeostasis and allow tissue vulnerability to disease. To establish an appropriate animal model which is readily available and will be useful to test therapeutic strategies during normal ageing, we applied behavioral approaches to study age-related changes in memory and motor function as a basis for neuronal function in ageing in male Sprague Dawley rats. 3 months, n=5; 6 months, n=5 and 18 months, n=5 male Sprague Dawley Rats were tested using the Novel Object Recognition Task (NORT) and the Elevated plus Maze (EPM) Test. Data was analyzed by ANOVA and the Newman-Keuls post hoc test. The results showed an age-related gradual decline in exploratory behavior and locomotor activity with increasing age in 3 months, 6 months and 18 months old rats, although the values were not statistically significant, but grooming activity significantly increased with increasing age. Importantly, we established a novel finding that the minimum distance from the novel object was statistically significant between 3 months and 18 months old rats and this may be an index for age-related memory impairment in the NORT. Altogether, we conclude that the male Sprague Dawley rat show age-related changes in neuronal function and may be a useful model for carrying out investigations into the mechanisms involved in normal ageing.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Nathan J; Hone, Arik J; Memon, Tosifa; Bossi, Simon; Smith, Thomas E; McIntosh, J Michael; Olivera, Baldomero M; Teichert, Russell W

    2013-01-01

    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 α3β4 and α6β4 nAChRs; (2) neurons that express predominantly α7 nAChRs; (3) neurons that express a combination of α3β4/α6β4 and α7 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 Ca(2) (+) 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 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.

  20. Catenin-dependent cadherin function drives divisional segregation of spinal motor neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bello, Sanusi M; Millo, Hadas; Rajebhosale, Manisha; Price, Stephen R

    2012-01-11

    Motor neurons that control limb movements are organized as a neuronal nucleus in the developing ventral horn of the spinal cord called the lateral motor column. Neuronal migration segregates motor neurons into distinct lateral and medial divisions within the lateral motor column that project axons to dorsal or ventral limb targets, respectively. This migratory phase is followed by an aggregation phase whereby motor neurons within a division that project to the same muscle cluster together. These later phases of motor neuron organization depend on limb-regulated differential cadherin expression within motor neurons. Initially, all motor neurons display the same cadherin expression profile, which coincides with the migratory phase of motor neuron segregation. Here, we show that this early, pan-motor neuron cadherin function drives the divisional segregation of spinal motor neurons in the chicken embryo by controlling motor neuron migration. We manipulated pan-motor neuron cadherin function through dissociation of cadherin binding to their intracellular partners. We found that of the major intracellular transducers of cadherin signaling, γ-catenin and α-catenin predominate in the lateral motor column. In vivo manipulations that uncouple cadherin-catenin binding disrupt divisional segregation via deficits in motor neuron migration. Additionally, reduction of the expression of cadherin-7, a cadherin predominantly expressed in motor neurons only during their migration, also perturbs divisional segregation. Our results show that γ-catenin-dependent cadherin function is required for spinal motor neuron migration and divisional segregation and suggest a prolonged role for cadherin expression in all phases of motor neuron organization.

  1. Social interaction in robotic agents emulating the mirror neuron function

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Barakova, E.I.; Mira, J.; Álvarez, J.R.

    2007-01-01

    Emergent interactions that are expressed by the movements of two agents are discussed in this paper. The common coding principle is used to show how the mirror neuron system may facilitate interaction behaviour. Synchronization between neuron groups in different structures of the mirror neuron

  2. Leptin signaling in GABA neurons, but not glutamate neurons, is required for reproductive function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zuure, Wieteke A; Roberts, Amy L; Quennell, Janette H; Anderson, Greg M

    2013-11-06

    The adipocyte-derived hormone leptin acts in the brain to modulate the central driver of fertility: the gonadotropin releasing hormone (GnRH) neuronal system. This effect is indirect, as GnRH neurons do not express leptin receptors (LEPRs). Here we test whether GABAergic or glutamatergic neurons provide the intermediate pathway between the site of leptin action and the GnRH neurons. Leptin receptors were deleted from GABA and glutamate neurons using Cre-Lox transgenics, and the downstream effects on puberty onset and reproduction were examined. Both mouse lines displayed the expected increase in body weight and region-specific loss of leptin signaling in the hypothalamus. The GABA neuron-specific LEPR knock-out females and males showed significantly delayed puberty onset. Adult fertility observations revealed that these knock-out animals have decreased fecundity. In contrast, glutamate neuron-specific LEPR knock-out mice displayed normal fertility. Assessment of the estrogenic hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis regulation in females showed that leptin action on GABA neurons is not necessary for estradiol-mediated suppression of tonic luteinizing hormone secretion (an indirect measure of GnRH neuron activity) but is required for regulation of a full preovulatory-like luteinizing hormone surge. In conclusion, leptin signaling in GABAergic (but not glutamatergic neurons) plays a critical role in the timing of puberty onset and is involved in fertility regulation throughout adulthood in both sexes. These results form an important step in explaining the role of central leptin signaling in the reproductive system. Limiting the leptin-to-GnRH mediators to GABAergic cells will enable future research to focus on a few specific types of neurons.

  3. Nonenzymatic glucosylation of neuronal calmodulin and its functional consequences

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kowluru, R.A.; Kowluru, A.; Bitensky, M.W.

    1986-01-01

    Glucosylation (NEG) (nonenzymatic) of proteins is a posttranslational protein modification that occurs readily in the diabetic environment. As a consequence of NEG some proteins are known to undergo a change in function. Their studies of red blood cell (RBC) cytoskeletal proteins indicate that calmodulin is glucosylated in the diabetic RBC and this is followed by a change in function. Here they present new data in support of their earlier findings. Purified bovine brain calmodulin was glucosylated in vitro in the presence of 28 mM glucose. After six days of incubation at room temperature 2.75 moles of glucose were incorporated per mole of calmodulin. Glucosylated calmodulin exhibited a marked reduction in calcium dependent functions. Its ability to stimulate neuronal phosphodiesterase (PDE) and adenylate cyclase was reduced by 65 and 80% respectively. Its ability to stimulate rat brain protein kinase was reduced by 40%. Glucosylated calmodulin exhibited a 56% drop in its 45 Ca binding as compared with unmodified calmodulin. These data provide an additional example in which NEG markedly alters protein function

  4. [Functional organization and structure of the serotonergic neuronal network of terrestrial snail].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nikitin, E S; Balaban, P M

    2011-01-01

    The extension of knowledge how the brain works requires permanent improvement of methods of recording of neuronal activity and increase in the number of neurons recorded simultaneously to better understand the collective work of neuronal networks and assemblies. Conventional methods allow simultaneous intracellular recording up to 2-5 neurons and their membrane potentials, currents or monosynaptic connections or observation of spiking of neuronal groups with subsequent discrimination of individual spikes with loss of details of the dynamics of membrane potential. We recorded activity of a compact group of serotonergic neurons (up to 56 simultaneously) in the ganglion of a terrestrial mollusk using the method of optical recording of membrane potential that allowed to record individual action potentials in details with action potential parameters and to reveal morphology of the neurons rcorded. We demonstrated clear clustering in the group in relation with the dynamics of action potentials and phasic or tonic components in the neuronal responses to external electrophysiological and tactile stimuli. Also, we showed that identified neuron Pd2 could induce activation of a significant number of neurons in the group whereas neuron Pd4 did not induce any activation. However, its activation is delayed with regard to activation of the reacting group of neurons. Our data strongly support the concept of possible delegation of the integrative function by the network to a single neuron.

  5. 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.

  6. The function of mirror neurons in the learning process

    OpenAIRE

    Mara Daniel

    2017-01-01

    In the last years, Neurosciences have developed very much, being elaborated many important theories scientific research in the field. The main goal of neuroscience is to understand how groups of neurons interact to create the behavior. Neuroscientists studying the action of molecules, genes and cells. It also explores the complex interactions involved in motion perception, thoughts, emotions and learning. Brick fundamental nervous system is the nerve cell, neuron. Neurons exchange information...

  7. Overexpression of survival motor neuron improves neuromuscular function and motor neuron survival in mutant SOD1 mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, Bradley J; Alfazema, Neza; Sheean, Rebecca K; Sleigh, James N; Davies, Kay E; Horne, Malcolm K; Talbot, Kevin

    2014-04-01

    Spinal muscular atrophy results from diminished levels of survival motor neuron (SMN) protein in spinal motor neurons. Low levels of SMN also occur in models of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) caused by mutant superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1) and genetic reduction of SMN levels exacerbates the phenotype of transgenic SOD1(G93A) mice. Here, we demonstrate that SMN protein is significantly reduced in the spinal cords of patients with sporadic ALS. To test the potential of SMN as a modifier of ALS, we overexpressed SMN in 2 different strains of SOD1(G93A) mice. Neuronal overexpression of SMN significantly preserved locomotor function, rescued motor neurons, and attenuated astrogliosis in spinal cords of SOD1(G93A) mice. Despite this, survival was not prolonged, most likely resulting from SMN mislocalization and depletion of gems in motor neurons of symptomatic mice. Our results reveal that SMN upregulation slows locomotor deficit onset and motor neuron loss in this mouse model of ALS. However, disruption of SMN nuclear complexes by high levels of mutant SOD1, even in the presence of SMN overexpression, might limit its survival promoting effects in this specific mouse model. Studies in emerging mouse models of ALS are therefore warranted to further explore the potential of SMN as a modifier of ALS. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Neuron-specific feeding RNAi in C. elegans and its use in a screen for essential genes required for GABA neuron function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Firnhaber, Christopher; Hammarlund, Marc

    2013-11-01

    Forward genetic screens are important tools for exploring the genetic requirements for neuronal function. However, conventional forward screens often have difficulty identifying genes whose relevant functions are masked by pleiotropy. In particular, if loss of gene function results in sterility, lethality, or other severe pleiotropy, neuronal-specific functions cannot be readily analyzed. Here we describe a method in C. elegans for generating cell-specific knockdown in neurons using feeding RNAi and its application in a screen for the role of essential genes in GABAergic neurons. We combine manipulations that increase the sensitivity of select neurons to RNAi with manipulations that block RNAi in other cells. We produce animal strains in which feeding RNAi results in restricted gene knockdown in either GABA-, acetylcholine-, dopamine-, or glutamate-releasing neurons. In these strains, we observe neuron cell-type specific behavioral changes when we knock down genes required for these neurons to function, including genes encoding the basal neurotransmission machinery. These reagents enable high-throughput, cell-specific knockdown in the nervous system, facilitating rapid dissection of the site of gene action and screening for neuronal functions of essential genes. Using the GABA-specific RNAi strain, we screened 1,320 RNAi clones targeting essential genes on chromosomes I, II, and III for their effect on GABA neuron function. We identified 48 genes whose GABA cell-specific knockdown resulted in reduced GABA motor output. This screen extends our understanding of the genetic requirements for continued neuronal function in a mature organism.

  9. 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.

  10. Functional Connectome Analysis of Dopamine Neuron Glutamatergic Connections in Forebrain Regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mingote, Susana; Chuhma, Nao; Kusnoor, Sheila V; Field, Bianca; Deutch, Ariel Y; Rayport, Stephen

    2015-12-09

    In the ventral tegmental area (VTA), a subpopulation of dopamine neurons express vesicular glutamate transporter 2 and make glutamatergic connections to nucleus accumbens (NAc) and olfactory tubercle (OT) neurons. However, their glutamatergic connections across the forebrain have not been explored systematically. To visualize dopamine neuron forebrain projections and to enable photostimulation of their axons independent of transmitter status, we virally transfected VTA neurons with channelrhodopsin-2 fused to enhanced yellow fluorescent protein (ChR2-EYFP) and used DAT(IREScre) mice to restrict expression to dopamine neurons. ChR2-EYFP-expressing neurons almost invariably stained for tyrosine hydroxylase, identifying them as dopaminergic. Dopamine neuron axons visualized by ChR2-EYFP fluorescence projected most densely to the striatum, moderately to the amygdala and entorhinal cortex (ERC), sparsely to prefrontal and cingulate cortices, and rarely to the hippocampus. Guided by ChR2-EYFP fluorescence, we recorded systematically from putative principal neurons in target areas and determined the incidence and strength of glutamatergic connections by activating all dopamine neuron terminals impinging on recorded neurons with wide-field photostimulation. This revealed strong glutamatergic connections in the NAc, OT, and ERC; moderate strength connections in the central amygdala; and weak connections in the cingulate cortex. No glutamatergic connections were found in the dorsal striatum, hippocampus, basolateral amygdala, or prefrontal cortex. These results indicate that VTA dopamine neurons elicit widespread, but regionally distinct, glutamatergic signals in the forebrain and begin to define the dopamine neuron excitatory functional connectome. Dopamine neurons are important for the control of motivated behavior and are involved in the pathophysiology of several major neuropsychiatric disorders. Recent studies have shown that some ventral midbrain dopamine neurons are

  11. Direct evidence of impaired neuronal Na/K-ATPase pump function in alternating hemiplegia of childhood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simmons, Christine Q; Thompson, Christopher H; Cawthon, Bryan E; Westlake, Grant; Swoboda, Kathryn J; Kiskinis, Evangelos; Ess, Kevin C; George, Alfred L

    2018-03-19

    Mutations in ATP1A3 encoding the catalytic subunit of the Na/K-ATPase expressed in mammalian neurons cause alternating hemiplegia of childhood (AHC) as well as an expanding spectrum of other neurodevelopmental syndromes and neurological phenotypes. Most AHC cases are explained by de novo heterozygous ATP1A3 mutations, but the fundamental molecular and cellular consequences of these mutations in human neurons are not known. In this study, we investigated the electrophysiological properties of neurons generated from AHC patient-specific induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) to ascertain functional disturbances underlying this neurological disease. Fibroblasts derived from two subjects with AHC, a male and a female, both heterozygous for the common ATP1A3 mutation G947R, were reprogrammed to iPSCs. Neuronal differentiation of iPSCs was initiated by neurogenin-2 (NGN2) induction followed by co-culture with mouse glial cells to promote maturation of cortical excitatory neurons. Whole-cell current clamp recording demonstrated that, compared with control iPSC-derived neurons, neurons differentiated from AHC iPSCs exhibited a significantly lower level of ouabain-sensitive outward current ('pump current'). This finding correlated with significantly depolarized potassium equilibrium potential and depolarized resting membrane potential in AHC neurons compared with control neurons. In this cellular model, we also observed a lower evoked action potential firing frequency when neurons were held at their resting potential. However, evoked action potential firing frequencies were not different between AHC and control neurons when the membrane potential was clamped to -80 mV. Impaired neuronal excitability could be explained by lower voltage-gated sodium channel availability at the depolarized membrane potential observed in AHC neurons. Our findings provide direct evidence of impaired neuronal Na/K-ATPase ion transport activity in human AHC neurons and demonstrate the potential

  12. Voltage imaging to understand connections and functions of neuronal circuits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antic, Srdjan D.; Empson, Ruth M.

    2016-01-01

    Understanding of the cellular mechanisms underlying brain functions such as cognition and emotions requires monitoring of membrane voltage at the cellular, circuit, and system levels. Seminal voltage-sensitive dye and calcium-sensitive dye imaging studies have demonstrated parallel detection of electrical activity across populations of interconnected neurons in a variety of preparations. A game-changing advance made in recent years has been the conceptualization and development of optogenetic tools, including genetically encoded indicators of voltage (GEVIs) or calcium (GECIs) and genetically encoded light-gated ion channels (actuators, e.g., channelrhodopsin2). Compared with low-molecular-weight calcium and voltage indicators (dyes), the optogenetic imaging approaches are 1) cell type specific, 2) less invasive, 3) able to relate activity and anatomy, and 4) facilitate long-term recordings of individual cells' activities over weeks, thereby allowing direct monitoring of the emergence of learned behaviors and underlying circuit mechanisms. We highlight the potential of novel approaches based on GEVIs and compare those to calcium imaging approaches. We also discuss how novel approaches based on GEVIs (and GECIs) coupled with genetically encoded actuators will promote progress in our knowledge of brain circuits and systems. PMID:27075539

  13. Functional Characterization of Lamina X Neurons in ex-Vivo Spinal Cord Preparation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Volodymyr Krotov

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Functional properties of lamina X neurons in the spinal cord remain unknown despite the established role of this area for somatosensory integration, visceral nociception, autonomic regulation and motoneuron output modulation. Investigations of neuronal functioning in the lamina X have been hampered by technical challenges. Here we introduce an ex-vivo spinal cord preparation with both dorsal and ventral roots still attached for functional studies of the lamina X neurons and their connectivity using an oblique LED illumination for resolved visualization of lamina X neurons in a thick tissue. With the elaborated approach, we demonstrate electrophysiological characteristics of lamina X neurons by their membrane properties, firing pattern discharge and fiber innervation (either afferent or efferent. The tissue preparation has been also probed using Ca2+ imaging with fluorescent Ca2+ dyes (membrane-impermeable or -permeable to demonstrate the depolarization-induced changes in intracellular calcium concentration in lamina X neurons. Finally, we performed visualization of subpopulations of lamina X neurons stained by retrograde labeling with aminostilbamidine dye to identify sympathetic preganglionic and projection neurons in the lamina X. Thus, the elaborated approach provides a reliable tool for investigation of functional properties and connectivity in specific neuronal subpopulations, boosting research of lamina X of the spinal cord.

  14. The function of mirror neurons in the learning process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mara Daniel

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available In the last years, Neurosciences have developed very much, being elaborated many important theories scientific research in the field. The main goal of neuroscience is to understand how groups of neurons interact to create the behavior. Neuroscientists studying the action of molecules, genes and cells. It also explores the complex interactions involved in motion perception, thoughts, emotions and learning. Brick fundamental nervous system is the nerve cell, neuron. Neurons exchange information by sending electrical signals and chemical through connections called synapses. Discovered by a group of Italian researchers from the University of Parma, neurons - mirror are a special class of nerve cells played an important role in the direct knowledge, automatic and unconscious environment. These cortical neurons are activated not only when an action is fulfilled, but when we see how the same action is performed by someone else, they represent neural mechanism by which the actions, intentions and emotions of others can be understood automatically. In childhood neurons - mirror are extremely important. Thanks to them we learned a lot in the early years: smile, to ask for help and, in fact, all the behaviors and family and group norms. People learn by what they see and sense the others. Neurons - mirror are important to understanding the actions and intentions of other people and learn new skills through mirror image. They are involved in planning and controlling actions, abstract thinking and memory. If a child observes an action, neurons - mirror is activated and forming new neural pathways as if even he takes that action. Efficient activity of mirror neurons leads to good development in all areas at a higher emotional intelligence and the ability to empathize with others.

  15. Functional properties of human neuronal Kv11 channels

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Einarsen, Karoline; Calloe, Kirstine; Grunnet, Morten

    2009-01-01

    Kv11 potassium channels are important for regulation of the membrane potential. Kv11.2 and Kv11.3 are primarily found in the nervous system, where they most likely are involved in the regulation of neuronal excitability. Two isoforms of human Kv11.2 have been published so far. Here, we present...... current characteristics of the isoforms presented in this work may contribute to the regulation of neuronal excitability....

  16. 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

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Motor neuron loss is characteristic of cervical spinal cord injury (SCI and contributes to functional deficit.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.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.

  17. Unique functional properties of somatostatin-expressing GABAergic neurons in mouse barrel cortex.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gentet, L.J.; Kremer, Y.; Taniguchi, H.; Huang, Z.J.; Staiger, J.F.; Petersen, C.C.H.

    2012-01-01

    Neocortical GABAergic neurons have diverse molecular, structural and electrophysiological features, but the functional correlates of this diversity are largely unknown. We found unique membrane potential dynamics of somatostatin-expressing (SOM) neurons in layer 2/3 of the primary somatosensory

  18. 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....

  19. α-Synuclein fibril-induced paradoxical structural and functional defects in hippocampal neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Froula, Jessica M; Henderson, Benjamin W; Gonzalez, Jose Carlos; Vaden, Jada H; Mclean, John W; Wu, Yumei; Banumurthy, Gokulakrishna; Overstreet-Wadiche, Linda; Herskowitz, Jeremy H; Volpicelli-Daley, Laura A

    2018-05-01

    Neuronal inclusions composed of α-synuclein (α-syn) characterize Parkinson's Disease (PD) and Dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB). Cognitive dysfunction defines DLB, and up to 80% of PD patients develop dementia. α-Syn inclusions are abundant in the hippocampus, yet functional consequences are unclear. To determine if pathologic α-syn causes neuronal defects, we induced endogenous α-syn to form inclusions resembling those found in diseased brains by treating hippocampal neurons with α-syn fibrils. At seven days after adding fibrils, α-syn inclusions are abundant in axons, but there is no cell death at this time point, allowing us to assess for potential alterations in neuronal function that are not caused by neuron death. We found that exposure of neurons to fibrils caused a significant reduction in mushroom spine densities, adding to the growing body of literature showing that altered spine morphology is a major pathologic phenotype in synucleinopathies. The reduction in spine densities occurred only in wild type neurons and not in neurons from α-syn knockout mice, suggesting that the changes in spine morphology result from fibril-induced corruption of endogenously expressed α-syn. Paradoxically, reduced postsynaptic spine density was accompanied by increased frequency of miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) and presynaptic docked vesicles, suggesting enhanced presynaptic function. Action-potential dependent activity was unchanged, suggesting compensatory mechanisms responding to synaptic defects. Although activity at the level of the synapse was unchanged, neurons exposed to α-syn fibrils, showed reduced frequency and amplitudes of spontaneous Ca 2+ transients. These findings open areas of research to determine the mechanisms that alter neuronal function in brain regions critical for cognition at time points before neuron death.

  20. Stochastic nanoroughness modulates neuron-astrocyte interactions and function via mechanosensing cation channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blumenthal, Nils R; Hermanson, Ola; Heimrich, Bernd; Shastri, V Prasad

    2014-11-11

    Extracellular soluble signals are known to play a critical role in maintaining neuronal function and homeostasis in the CNS. However, the CNS is also composed of extracellular matrix macromolecules and glia support cells, and the contribution of the physical attributes of these components in maintenance and regulation of neuronal function is not well understood. Because these components possess well-defined topography, we theorize a role for topography in neuronal development and we demonstrate that survival and function of hippocampal neurons and differentiation of telencephalic neural stem cells is modulated by nanoroughness. At roughnesses corresponding to that of healthy astrocytes, hippocampal neurons dissociated and survived independent from astrocytes and showed superior functional traits (increased polarity and calcium flux). Furthermore, telencephalic neural stem cells differentiated into neurons even under exogenous signals that favor astrocytic differentiation. The decoupling of neurons from astrocytes seemed to be triggered by changes to astrocyte apical-surface topography in response to nanoroughness. Blocking signaling through mechanosensing cation channels using GsMTx4 negated the ability of neurons to sense the nanoroughness and promoted decoupling of neurons from astrocytes, thus providing direct evidence for the role of nanotopography in neuron-astrocyte interactions. We extrapolate the role of topography to neurodegenerative conditions and show that regions of amyloid plaque buildup in brain tissue of Alzheimer's patients are accompanied by detrimental changes in tissue roughness. These findings suggest a role for astrocyte and ECM-induced topographical changes in neuronal pathologies and provide new insights for developing therapeutic targets and engineering of neural biomaterials.

  1. 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.

  2. Circadian Activators Are Expressed Days before They Initiate Clock Function in Late Pacemaker Neurons from Drosophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Tianxin; Mahesh, Guruswamy; Houl, Jerry H; Hardin, Paul E

    2015-06-03

    Circadian pacemaker neurons in the Drosophila brain control daily rhythms in locomotor activity. These pacemaker neurons can be subdivided into early or late groups depending on whether rhythms in period (per) and timeless (tim) expression are initiated at the first instar (L1) larval stage or during metamorphosis, respectively. Because CLOCK-CYCLE (CLK-CYC) heterodimers initiate circadian oscillator function by activating per and tim transcription, a Clk-GFP transgene was used to mark when late pacemaker neurons begin to develop. We were surprised to see that CLK-GFP was already expressed in four of five clusters of late pacemaker neurons during the third instar (L3) larval stage. CLK-GFP is only detected in postmitotic neurons from L3 larvae, suggesting that these four late pacemaker neuron clusters are formed before the L3 larval stage. A GFP-cyc transgene was used to show that CYC, like CLK, is also expressed exclusively in pacemaker neurons from L3 larval brains, demonstrating that CLK-CYC is not sufficient to activate per and tim in late pacemaker neurons at the L3 larval stage. These results suggest that most late pacemaker neurons develop days before novel factors activate circadian oscillator function during metamorphosis. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/358662-10$15.00/0.

  3. Maternal creatine supplementation affects the morpho-functional development of hippocampal neurons in rat offspring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sartini, S; Lattanzi, D; Ambrogini, P; Di Palma, M; Galati, C; Savelli, D; Polidori, E; Calcabrini, C; Rocchi, M B L; Sestili, P; Cuppini, R

    2016-01-15

    Creatine supplementation has been shown to protect neurons from oxidative damage due to its antioxidant and ergogenic functions. These features have led to the hypothesis of creatine supplementation use during pregnancy as prophylactic treatment to prevent CNS damage, such as hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy. Unfortunately, very little is known on the effects of creatine supplementation during neuron differentiation, while in vitro studies revealed an influence on neuron excitability, leaving the possibility of creatine supplementation during the CNS development an open question. Using a multiple approach, we studied the hippocampal neuron morphological and functional development in neonatal rats born by dams supplemented with 1% creatine in drinking water during pregnancy. CA1 pyramidal neurons of supplemented newborn rats showed enhanced dendritic tree development, increased LTP maintenance, larger evoked-synaptic responses, and higher intrinsic excitability in comparison to controls. Moreover, a faster repolarizing phase of action potential with the appearance of a hyperpolarization were recorded in neurons of the creatine-treated group. Consistently, CA1 neurons of creatine exposed pups exhibited a higher maximum firing frequency than controls. In summary, we found that creatine supplementation during pregnancy positively affects morphological and electrophysiological development of CA1 neurons in offspring rats, increasing neuronal excitability. Altogether, these findings emphasize the need to evaluate the benefits and the safety of maternal intake of creatine in humans. Copyright © 2015 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Control of neuronal network organization by chemical surface functionalization of multi-walled carbon nanotube arrays

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liu Jie; Bibari, Olivier; Marchand, Gilles; Benabid, Alim-Louis; Sauter-Starace, Fabien; Appaix, Florence; De Waard, Michel

    2011-01-01

    Carbon nanotube substrates are promising candidates for biological applications and devices. Interfacing of these carbon nanotubes with neurons can be controlled by chemical modifications. In this study, we investigated how chemical surface functionalization of multi-walled carbon nanotube arrays (MWNT-A) influences neuronal adhesion and network organization. Functionalization of MWNT-A dramatically modifies the length of neurite fascicles, cluster inter-connection success rate, and the percentage of neurites that escape from the clusters. We propose that chemical functionalization represents a method of choice for developing applications in which neuronal patterning on MWNT-A substrates is required.

  5. Control of neuronal network organization by chemical surface functionalization of multi-walled carbon nanotube arrays

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu Jie; Bibari, Olivier; Marchand, Gilles; Benabid, Alim-Louis; Sauter-Starace, Fabien [CEA, LETI-Minatec, 17 Rue des Martyrs, 38054 Grenoble Cedex 9 (France); Appaix, Florence; De Waard, Michel, E-mail: fabien.sauter@cea.fr, E-mail: michel.dewaard@ujf-grenoble.fr [Inserm U836, Grenoble Institute of Neuroscience, Site Sante la Tronche, Batiment Edmond J Safra, Chemin Fortune Ferrini, BP170, 38042 Grenoble Cedex 09 (France)

    2011-05-13

    Carbon nanotube substrates are promising candidates for biological applications and devices. Interfacing of these carbon nanotubes with neurons can be controlled by chemical modifications. In this study, we investigated how chemical surface functionalization of multi-walled carbon nanotube arrays (MWNT-A) influences neuronal adhesion and network organization. Functionalization of MWNT-A dramatically modifies the length of neurite fascicles, cluster inter-connection success rate, and the percentage of neurites that escape from the clusters. We propose that chemical functionalization represents a method of choice for developing applications in which neuronal patterning on MWNT-A substrates is required.

  6. 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.

  7. Spatiotemporal intracellular dynamics of neurotrophin and its receptors. Implications for neurotrophin signaling and neuronal function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bronfman, F C; Lazo, O M; Flores, C; Escudero, C A

    2014-01-01

    Neurons possess a polarized morphology specialized to contribute to neuronal networks, and this morphology imposes an important challenge for neuronal signaling and communication. The physiology of the network is regulated by neurotrophic factors that are secreted in an activity-dependent manner modulating neuronal connectivity. Neurotrophins are a well-known family of neurotrophic factors that, together with their cognate receptors, the Trks and the p75 neurotrophin receptor, regulate neuronal plasticity and survival and determine the neuronal phenotype in healthy and regenerating neurons. Is it now becoming clear that neurotrophin signaling and vesicular transport are coordinated to modify neuronal function because disturbances of vesicular transport mechanisms lead to disturbed neurotrophin signaling and to diseases of the nervous system. This chapter summarizes our current understanding of how the regulated secretion of neurotrophin, the distribution of neurotrophin receptors in different locations of neurons, and the intracellular transport of neurotrophin-induced signaling in distal processes are achieved to allow coordinated neurotrophin signaling in the cell body and axons.

  8. Polysensory response characteristics of dorsal root ganglion neurones that may serve sensory functions during myocardial ischaemia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, M H; Horackova, M; Negoescu, R M; Wolf, S; Armour, J A

    1996-09-01

    To determine the response characteristics of dorsal root ganglion neurones that may serve sensory functions during myocardial ischaemia. Extracellular recordings were made from 54 spontaneously active and 5 normally quiescent dorsal root ganglion neurones (T2-T5) in 22 anaesthetized open-chest dogs under control conditions and during epicardial mechanical or chemical stimulation and myocardial ischaemia. The activity of 78% of spontaneously active and all quiescent neurones with left ventricular sensory fields was modified by left ventricular ischaemia. Forty-six spontaneously active neurones (85%) were polysensory with respect to mechanical and chemical stimuli. The 5 quiescent neurones responded only to chemical stimuli. Spontaneously active neurones associated with left ventricular mechanosensory endings (37 neurones) generated four different activity patterns in response to similar mechanical stimuli (high or low pressure active, high-low pressure active, high-low pressure inactive). A fifth group generated activity which was not related to chamber dynamics. Adenosine, adenosine 5'-triphosphate, substance P and bradykinin modified 72, 61, 65 and 63% of the spontaneously active neurones, respectively. Maximum local mechanical or chemical stimuli enhanced activity to similar degrees, as did ischaemia. Each ischaemia-sensitive neurone displayed unique activity patterns in response to similar mechanical or chemical stimuli. Most myocardial ischemia-sensitive dorsal root ganglion neurones associated with epicardial neurites sense mechanical and multiple chemical stimuli, a small population sensing only mechanical or chemical stimuli. Activity patterns generated by these neurones depend on their primary sensory characteristics or those of other neurones that may converge on them, as well as the type and magnitude of the stimuli that impinge upon their sensory fields, both normally and during ischaemia.

  9. Neuronal Functions of Activators of G Protein Signaling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Man K. Tse

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs are one of the most important gateways for signal transduction across the plasma membrane. Over the past decade, several classes of alternative regulators of G protein signaling have been identified and reported to activate the G proteins independent of the GPCRs. One group of such regulators is the activator of G protein signaling (AGS family which comprises of AGS1-10. They have entirely different activation mechanisms for G proteins as compared to the classic model of GPCR-mediated signaling and confer upon cells new avenues of signal transduction. As GPCRs are widely expressed in our nervous system, it is believed that the AGS family plays a major role in modulating the G protein signaling in neurons. In this article, we will review the current knowledge on AGS proteins in relation to their potential roles in neuronal regulations.

  10. Osmosensation in vasopressin neurons: changing actin density to optimize function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prager-Khoutorsky, Masha; Bourque, Charles W

    2010-02-01

    The proportional relation between circulating vasopressin concentration and plasma osmolality is fundamental for body fluid homeostasis. Although changes in the sensitivity of this relation are associated with pathophysiological conditions, central mechanisms modulating osmoregulatory gain are unknown. Here, we review recent data that sheds important light on this process. The cell autonomous osmosensitivity of vasopressin neurons depends on cation channels comprising a variant of the transient receptor potential vanilloid 1 (TRPV1) channel. Hyperosmotic activation is mediated by a mechanical process where sensitivity increases in proportion with actin filament density. Moreover, angiotensin II amplifies osmotic activation by a rapid stimulation of actin polymerization, suggesting that neurotransmitter-induced changes in cytoskeletal organization in osmosensory neurons can mediate central changes in osmoregulatory gain. (c) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Two Aspects of ASIC Function: Synaptic Plasticity and Neuronal Injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Yan; Jiang, Nan; Li, Jun; Ji, Yong-Hua; Xiong, Zhi-Gang; Zha, Xiang-ming

    2015-01-01

    Extracellular brain pH fluctuates in both physiological and disease conditions. The main postsynaptic proton receptor is the acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs). During the past decade, much progress has been made on protons, ASICs, and neurological disease. This review summarizes the recent progress on synaptic role of protons and our current understanding of how ASICs contribute to various types of neuronal injury in the brain. PMID:25582290

  12. The Intrinsic Electrophysiological Properties of Mammalian Neurons: Insights into Central Nervous System Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Llinas, Rodolfo R.

    1988-12-01

    This article reviews the electroresponsive properties of single neurons in the mammalian central nervous system (CNS). In some of these cells the ionic conductances responsible for their excitability also endow them with autorhythmic electrical oscillatory properties. Chemical or electrical synaptic contacts between these neurons often result in network oscillations. In such networks, autorhytmic neurons may act as true oscillators (as pacemakers) or as resonators (responding preferentially to certain firing frequencies). Oscillations and resonance in the CNS are proposed to have diverse functional roles, such as (i) determining global functional states (for example, sleep-wakefulness or attention), (ii) timing in motor coordination, and (iii) specifying connectivity during development. Also, oscillation, especially in the thalamo-cortical circuits, may be related to certain neurological and psychiatric disorders. This review proposes that the autorhythmic electrical properties of central neurons and their connectivity form the basis for an intrinsic functional coordinate system that provides internal context to sensory input.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

  14. Network control principles predict neuron function in the Caenorhabditis elegans connectome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Gang; Vértes, Petra E.; Towlson, Emma K.; Chew, Yee Lian; Walker, Denise S.; Schafer, William R.; Barabási, Albert-László

    2017-10-01

    Recent studies on the controllability of complex systems offer a powerful mathematical framework to systematically explore the structure-function relationship in biological, social, and technological networks. Despite theoretical advances, we lack direct experimental proof of the validity of these widely used control principles. Here we fill this gap by applying a control framework to the connectome of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, allowing us to predict the involvement of each C. elegans neuron in locomotor behaviours. We predict that control of the muscles or motor neurons requires 12 neuronal classes, which include neuronal groups previously implicated in locomotion by laser ablation, as well as one previously uncharacterized neuron, PDB. We validate this prediction experimentally, finding that the ablation of PDB leads to a significant loss of dorsoventral polarity in large body bends. Importantly, control principles also allow us to investigate the involvement of individual neurons within each neuronal class. For example, we predict that, within the class of DD motor neurons, only three (DD04, DD05, or DD06) should affect locomotion when ablated individually. This prediction is also confirmed; single cell ablations of DD04 or DD05 specifically affect posterior body movements, whereas ablations of DD02 or DD03 do not. Our predictions are robust to deletions of weak connections, missing connections, and rewired connections in the current connectome, indicating the potential applicability of this analytical framework to larger and less well-characterized connectomes.

  15. Three Types of Cortical L5 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.

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY 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. PMID:26671462

  16. 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. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Network control principles predict neuron function in the Caenorhabditis elegans connectome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Gang; Vértes, Petra E; Towlson, Emma K; Chew, Yee Lian; Walker, Denise S; Schafer, William R; Barabási, Albert-László

    2017-10-26

    Recent studies on the controllability of complex systems offer a powerful mathematical framework to systematically explore the structure-function relationship in biological, social, and technological networks. Despite theoretical advances, we lack direct experimental proof of the validity of these widely used control principles. Here we fill this gap by applying a control framework to the connectome of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, allowing us to predict the involvement of each C. elegans neuron in locomotor behaviours. We predict that control of the muscles or motor neurons requires 12 neuronal classes, which include neuronal groups previously implicated in locomotion by laser ablation, as well as one previously uncharacterized neuron, PDB. We validate this prediction experimentally, finding that the ablation of PDB leads to a significant loss of dorsoventral polarity in large body bends. Importantly, control principles also allow us to investigate the involvement of individual neurons within each neuronal class. For example, we predict that, within the class of DD motor neurons, only three (DD04, DD05, or DD06) should affect locomotion when ablated individually. This prediction is also confirmed; single cell ablations of DD04 or DD05 specifically affect posterior body movements, whereas ablations of DD02 or DD03 do not. Our predictions are robust to deletions of weak connections, missing connections, and rewired connections in the current connectome, indicating the potential applicability of this analytical framework to larger and less well-characterized connectomes.

  18. Differentiation of Spermatogonia Stem Cells into Functional Mature Neurons Characterized with Differential Gene Expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bojnordi, Maryam Nazm; Azizi, Hossein; Skutella, Thomas; Movahedin, Mansoureh; Pourabdolhossein, Fereshteh; Shojaei, Amir; Hamidabadi, Hatef Ghasemi

    2017-09-01

    Transplantation of embryonic stem cells (ESCs) is a promising therapeutic approach for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. However, ESCs are not usable clinically due to immunological and ethical limitations. The identification of an alternative safe cell source opens novel options via autologous transplantation in neuro-regeneration circumventing these problems. Here, we examined the neurogenic capacity of embryonic stem-like cells (ES-like cells) derived from the testis using neural growth factor inducers and utilized them to generate functional mature neurons. The neuronal differentiation of ES-like cells is induced in three stages. Stage 1 is related to embryoid body (EB) formation. To induce neuroprogenitor cells, EBs were cultured in the presence of retinoic acid, N 2 supplement and fibroblast growth factor followed by culturing in a neurobasal medium containing B 27 , N 2 supplements for additional 10 days, to allow the maturation and development of neuronal progenitor cells. The neurogenic differentiation was confirmed by immunostaining for markers of mature neurons. The differentiated neurons were positive for Tuj1 and Tau1. Real-time PCR dates indicated the expression of Nestin and Neuro D (neuroprogenitor markers) in induced cells at the second stage of the differentiation protocol. The differentiated mature neurons exhibited the specific neuron markers Map2 and β-tubulin. The functional maturity of neurons was confirmed by an electrophysiological analysis of passive and active neural membrane properties. These findings indicated a differentiation capacity of ES-like cells derived from the testis to functionally mature neurons, which proposes them as a novel cell source for neuroregenerative medicine.

  19. Focusing on neuronal cell-type specific mechanisms for brain circuit organization, function and dysfunction

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Lu Li

    2017-01-01

    Mammalian brain circuits consist of dynamically interconnected neurons with characteristic morphology, physiology, connectivity and genetics which are often called neuronal cell types. Neuronal cell types have been considered as building blocks of brain circuits, but knowledge of how neuron types or subtypes connect to and interact with each other to perform neural computation is still lacking. Such mechanistic insights are critical not only to our understanding of normal brain functions, such as perception, motion and cognition, but also to brain disorders including Alzheimer's disease, Schizophrenia and epilepsy, to name a few. Thus it is necessary to carry out systematic and standardized studies on neuronal cell-type specific mechanisms for brain circuit organization and function, which will provide good opportunities to bridge basic and clinical research. Here based on recent technology advancements, we discuss the strategy to target and manipulate specific populations of neuronsin vivo to provide unique insights on how neuron types or subtypes behave, interact, and generate emergent properties in a fully connected brain network. Our approach is highlighted by combining transgenic animal models, targeted electrophysiology and imaging with robotics, thus complete and standardized mapping ofin vivo properties of genetically defined neuron populations can be achieved in transgenic mouse models, which will facilitate the development of novel therapeutic strategies for brain disorders.

  20. The functional significance of newly born neurons integrated into olfactory bulb circuits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakamoto, Masayuki; Kageyama, Ryoichiro; Imayoshi, Itaru

    2014-01-01

    The olfactory bulb (OB) is the first central processing center for olfactory information connecting with higher areas in the brain, and this neuronal circuitry mediates a variety of odor-evoked behavioral responses. In the adult mammalian brain, continuous neurogenesis occurs in two restricted regions, the subventricular zone (SVZ) of the lateral ventricle and the hippocampal dentate gyrus. New neurons born in the SVZ migrate through the rostral migratory stream and are integrated into the neuronal circuits of the OB throughout life. The significance of this continuous supply of new neurons in the OB has been implicated in plasticity and memory regulation. Two decades of huge investigation in adult neurogenesis revealed the biological importance of integration of new neurons into the olfactory circuits. In this review, we highlight the recent findings about the physiological functions of newly generated neurons in rodent OB circuits and then discuss the contribution of neurogenesis in the brain function. Finally, we introduce cutting edge technologies to monitor and manipulate the activity of new neurons.

  1. The functional significance of newly born neurons integrated into olfactory bulb circuits

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masayuki eSakamoto

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available The olfactory bulb (OB is the first central processing center for olfactory information connecting with higher areas in the brain, and this neuronal circuitry mediates a variety of odor-evoked behavioral responses. In the adult mammalian brain, continuous neurogenesis occurs in two restricted regions, the subventricular zone (SVZ of the lateral ventricle and the hippocampal dentate gyrus. New neurons born in the SVZ migrate through the rostral migratory stream and are integrated into the neuronal circuits of the OB throughout life. The significance of this continuous supply of new neurons in the OB has been implicated in plasticity and memory regulation. Two decades of huge investigation in adult neurogenesis revealed the biological importance of integration of new neurons into the olfactory circuits. In this review, we highlight the recent findings about the physiological functions of newly generated neurons in rodent OB circuits and then discuss the contribution of neurogenesis in the brain function. Finally, we introduce cutting edge technologies to monitor and manipulate the activity of new neurons.

  2. Pattern separation: a common function for new neurons in hippocampus and olfactory bulb.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sahay, Amar; Wilson, Donald A; Hen, René

    2011-05-26

    While adult-born neurons in the olfactory bulb (OB) and the dentate gyrus (DG) subregion of the hippocampus have fundamentally different properties, they may have more in common than meets the eye. Here, we propose that new granule cells in the OB and DG may function as modulators of principal neurons to influence pattern separation and that adult neurogenesis constitutes an adaptive mechanism to optimally encode contextual or olfactory information. See the related Perspective from Aimone, Deng, and Gage, "Resolving New Memories: A Critical Look at the Dentate Gyrus, Adult Neurogenesis, and Pattern Separation," in this issue of Neuron. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Two aspects of ASIC function: Synaptic plasticity and neuronal injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Yan; Jiang, Nan; Li, Jun; Ji, Yong-Hua; Xiong, Zhi-Gang; Zha, Xiang-ming

    2015-07-01

    Extracellular brain pH fluctuates in both physiological and disease conditions. The main postsynaptic proton receptor is the acid-sensing ion channels (ASICs). During the past decade, much progress has been made on protons, ASICs, and neurological disease. This review summarizes the recent progress on synaptic role of protons and our current understanding of how ASICs contribute to various types of neuronal injury in the brain. This article is part of the Special Issue entitled 'Acid-Sensing Ion Channels in the Nervous System'. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. 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.

  5. Functional properties and synaptic integration of genetically labelled dopaminergic neurons in intrastriatal grafts

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sørensen, Andreas Toft; Thompson, Lachlan; Kirik, Deniz

    2005-01-01

    in the dopamine-depleted striatum than of those in the intact striatum. Our findings define specific electrophysiological characteristics of transplanted fetal dopaminergic neurons, and we provide the first direct evidence of functional synaptic integration of these neurons into host neural circuitries......., the electrophysiological properties grafted cells need to have in order to induce substantial functional recovery are poorly defined. It has not been possible to prospectively identify and record from dopaminergic neurons in fetal transplants. Here we used transgenic mice expressing green fluorescent protein under control...... of the rat tyrosine hydroxylase promoter for whole-cell patch-clamp recordings of endogenous and grafted dopaminergic neurons. We transplanted ventral mesencephalic tissue from E12.5 transgenic mice into striatum of neonatal rats with or without lesions of the nigrostriatal dopamine system. The transplanted...

  6. Functional architecture of reward learning in mushroom body extrinsic neurons of larval Drosophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saumweber, Timo; Rohwedder, Astrid; Schleyer, Michael; Eichler, Katharina; Chen, Yi-Chun; Aso, Yoshinori; Cardona, Albert; Eschbach, Claire; Kobler, Oliver; Voigt, Anne; Durairaja, Archana; Mancini, Nino; Zlatic, Marta; Truman, James W; Thum, Andreas S; Gerber, Bertram

    2018-03-16

    The brain adaptively integrates present sensory input, past experience, and options for future action. The insect mushroom body exemplifies how a central brain structure brings about such integration. Here we use a combination of systematic single-cell labeling, connectomics, transgenic silencing, and activation experiments to study the mushroom body at single-cell resolution, focusing on the behavioral architecture of its input and output neurons (MBINs and MBONs), and of the mushroom body intrinsic APL neuron. Our results reveal the identity and morphology of almost all of these 44 neurons in stage 3 Drosophila larvae. Upon an initial screen, functional analyses focusing on the mushroom body medial lobe uncover sparse and specific functions of its dopaminergic MBINs, its MBONs, and of the GABAergic APL neuron across three behavioral tasks, namely odor preference, taste preference, and associative learning between odor and taste. Our results thus provide a cellular-resolution study case of how brains organize behavior.

  7. ALS-associated mutant FUS induces selective motor neuron degeneration through toxic gain of function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Aarti; Lyashchenko, Alexander K; Lu, Lei; Nasrabady, Sara Ebrahimi; Elmaleh, Margot; Mendelsohn, Monica; Nemes, Adriana; Tapia, Juan Carlos; Mentis, George Z; Shneider, Neil A

    2016-02-04

    Mutations in FUS cause amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), including some of the most aggressive, juvenile-onset forms of the disease. FUS loss-of-function and toxic gain-of-function mechanisms have been proposed to explain how mutant FUS leads to motor neuron degeneration, but neither has been firmly established in the pathogenesis of ALS. Here we characterize a series of transgenic FUS mouse lines that manifest progressive, mutant-dependent motor neuron degeneration preceded by early, structural and functional abnormalities at the neuromuscular junction. A novel, conditional FUS knockout mutant reveals that postnatal elimination of FUS has no effect on motor neuron survival or function. Moreover, endogenous FUS does not contribute to the onset of the ALS phenotype induced by mutant FUS. These findings demonstrate that FUS-dependent motor degeneration is not due to loss of FUS function, but to the gain of toxic properties conferred by ALS mutations.

  8. Diverse Intrinsic Properties Shape Functional Phenotype of Low-Frequency Neurons in the Auditory Brainstem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hui Hong

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available In the auditory system, tonotopy is the spatial arrangement of where sounds of different frequencies are processed. Defined by the organization of neurons and their inputs, tonotopy emphasizes distinctions in neuronal structure and function across topographic gradients and is a common feature shared among vertebrates. In this study we characterized action potential firing patterns and ion channel properties from neurons located in the extremely low-frequency region of the chicken nucleus magnocellularis (NM, an auditory brainstem structure. We found that NM neurons responsible for encoding the lowest sound frequencies (termed NMc neurons have enhanced excitability and fired bursts of action potentials to sinusoidal inputs ≤10 Hz; a distinct firing pattern compared to higher-frequency neurons. This response property was due to lower amounts of voltage dependent potassium (KV conductances, unique combination of KV subunits and specialized sodium (NaV channel properties. Particularly, NMc neurons had significantly lower KV1 and KV3 currents, but higher KV2 current. NMc neurons also showed larger and faster transient NaV current (INaT with different voltage dependence of inactivation from higher-frequency neurons. In contrast, significantly smaller resurgent sodium current (INaR was present in NMc with kinetics and voltage dependence that differed from higher-frequency neurons. Immunohistochemistry showed expression of NaV1.6 channel subtypes across the tonotopic axis. However, various immunoreactive patterns were observed between regions, likely underlying some tonotopic differences in INaT and INaR. Finally, using pharmacology and computational modeling, we concluded that KV3, KV2 channels and INaR work synergistically to regulate burst firing in NMc.

  9. An electronic implementation for Liao's chaotic delayed neuron model with non-monotonous activation function

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Duan Shukai; Liao Xiaofeng

    2007-01-01

    A new chaotic delayed neuron model with non-monotonously increasing transfer function, called as chaotic Liao's delayed neuron model, was recently reported and analyzed. An electronic implementation of this model is described in detail. At the same time, some methods in circuit design, especially for circuit with time delayed unit and non-monotonously increasing activation unit, are also considered carefully. We find that the dynamical behaviors of the designed circuits are closely similar to the results predicted by numerical experiments

  10. Prediction of rat behavior outcomes in memory tasks using functional connections among neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hu Lu

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Analyzing the neuronal organizational structures and studying the changes in the behavior of the organism is key to understanding cognitive functions of the brain. Although some studies have indicated that spatiotemporal firing patterns of neuronal populations have a certain relationship with the behavioral responses, the issues of whether there are any relationships between the functional networks comprised of these cortical neurons and behavioral tasks and whether it is possible to take advantage of these networks to predict correct and incorrect outcomes of single trials of animals are still unresolved. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: This paper presents a new method of analyzing the structures of whole-recorded neuronal functional networks (WNFNs and local neuronal circuit groups (LNCGs. The activity of these neurons was recorded in several rats. The rats performed two different behavioral tasks, the Y-maze task and the U-maze task. Using the results of the assessment of the WNFNs and LNCGs, this paper describes a realization procedure for predicting the behavioral outcomes of single trials. The methodology consists of four main parts: construction of WNFNs from recorded neuronal spike trains, partitioning the WNFNs into the optimal LNCGs using social community analysis, unsupervised clustering of all trials from each dataset into two different clusters, and predicting the behavioral outcomes of single trials. The results show that WNFNs and LNCGs correlate with the behavior of the animal. The U-maze datasets show higher accuracy for unsupervised clustering results than those from the Y-maze task, and these datasets can be used to predict behavioral responses effectively. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The results of the present study suggest that a methodology proposed in this paper is suitable for analysis of the characteristics of neuronal functional networks and the prediction of rat behavior. These types of structures in cortical

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alison Wood-Kaczmar

    2008-06-01

    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.

  12. Multiple functional attributes of glucose-monitoring neurons in the medial orbitofrontal (ventrolateral prefrontal) cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szabó, István; Hormay, Edina; Csetényi, Bettina; Nagy, Bernadett; Lénárd, László; Karádi, Zoltán

    2018-02-01

    Multiple functional attributes of glucose-monitoring neurons in the medial orbitofrontal (ventrolateral prefrontal) cortex. NEUROSCI BIOBEHAV REV 73(1) XXX-XXX, 2017.- Special chemosensory cells, the glucose-monitoring (GM) neurons, reportedly involved in the central feeding control, exist in the medial orbitofrontal (ventrolateral prefrontal) cortex (mVLPFC). Electrophysiological, metabolic and behavioral studies reveal complex functional attributes of these cells and raise their homeostatic significance. Single neuron recordings, by means of the multibarreled microelectrophoretic technique, elucidate differential sensitivities of limbic forebrain neurons in the rat and the rhesus monkey to glucose and other chemicals, whereas gustatory stimulations demonstrate their distinct taste responsiveness. Metabolic examinations provide evidence for alteration of blood glucose level in glucose tolerance test and elevation of plasma triglyceride concentration after destruction of the local GM cells by streptozotocin (STZ). In behavioral studies, STZ microinjection into the mVLPFC fails to interfere with the acquisition of saccharin conditioned taste avoidance, does cause, however, taste perception deficit in taste reactivity tests. Multiple functional attributes of GM neurons in the mVLPFC, within the frame of the hierarchically organized central GM neuronal network, appear to play important role in the maintenance of the homeostatic balance. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Functional Organization of Neuronal and Humoral Signals Regulating Feeding Behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwartz, Gary J.; Zeltser, Lori M.

    2014-01-01

    Energy homeostasis- ensuring that energy availability matches energy requirements- is essential for survival. One way that energy balance is achieved is through coordinated action of neural and neuroendocrine feeding circuits, which promote energy intake when energy supply is limited. Feeding behavior engages multiple somatic and visceral tissues distributed throughout the body – contraction of skeletal and smooth muscles in the head and along the upper digestive tract required to consume and digest food, as well as stimulation of endocrine and exocrine secretions from a wide range of organs. Accordingly, neurons that contribute to feeding behaviors are localized to central, peripheral and enteric nervous systems. To promote energy balance, feeding circuits must be able to identify and respond to energy requirements, as well as the amount of energy available from internal and external sources, and then direct appropriate coordinated responses throughout the body. PMID:23642202

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    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.

  15. Organization of Functional Long-Range Circuits Controlling the Activity of Serotonergic Neurons in the Dorsal Raphe Nucleus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Zhou

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Serotonergic neurons play key roles in various biological processes. However, circuit mechanisms underlying tight control of serotonergic neurons remain largely unknown. Here, we systematically investigated the organization of long-range synaptic inputs to serotonergic neurons and GABAergic neurons in the dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN of mice with a combination of viral tracing, slice electrophysiological, and optogenetic techniques. We found that DRN serotonergic neurons and GABAergic neurons receive largely comparable synaptic inputs from six major upstream brain areas. Upon further analysis of the fine functional circuit structures, we found both bilateral and ipsilateral patterns of topographic connectivity in the DRN for the axons from different inputs. Moreover, the upstream brain areas were found to bidirectionally control the activity of DRN serotonergic neurons by recruiting feedforward inhibition or via a push-pull mechanism. Our study provides a framework for further deciphering the functional roles of long-range circuits controlling the activity of serotonergic neurons in the DRN.

  16. Inflammatory mediator bradykinin increases population of sensory neurons expressing functional T-type Ca(2+) channels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Dongyang; Liang, Ce; Zhang, Fan; Men, Hongchao; Du, Xiaona; Gamper, Nikita; Zhang, Hailin

    2016-04-29

    T-type Ca(2+) channels are important regulators of peripheral sensory neuron excitability. Accordingly, T-type Ca(2+) currents are often increased in various pathological pain conditions, such as inflammation or nerve injury. Here we investigated effects of inflammation on functional expression of T-type Ca(2+) channels in small-diameter cultured dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons. We found that overnight treatment of DRG cultures with a cocktail of inflammatory mediators bradykinin (BK), adenosine triphosphate (ATP), norepinephrine (NE) and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) strongly increased the population size of the small-diameter neurons displaying low-voltage activated (LVA, T-type) Ca(2+) currents while having no effect on the peak LVA current amplitude. When applied individually, BK and ATP also increased the population size of LVA-positive neurons while NE and PGE2 had no effect. The PLC inhibitor U-73122 and B2 receptor antagonist, Hoe-140, both abolished the increase of the population of LVA-positive DRG neurons. Inflammatory treatment did not affect CaV3.2 mRNA or protein levels in DRG cultures. Furthermore, an ubiquitination inhibitor, MG132, did not increase the population of LVA-positive neurons. Our data suggest that inflammatory mediators BK and ATP increase the abundance of LVA-positive DRG neurons in total neuronal population by stimulating the recruitment of a 'reserve pool' of CaV3.2 channels, particularly in neurons that do not display measurable LVA currents under control conditions. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. The Effects of NAD+ on Apoptotic Neuronal Death and Mitochondrial Biogenesis and Function after Glutamate Excitotoxicity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xiaowan; Li, Hailong; Ding, Shinghua

    2014-01-01

    NAD+ is an essential co-enzyme for cellular energy metabolism and is also involved as a substrate for many cellular enzymatic reactions. It has been shown that NAD+ has a beneficial effect on neuronal survival and brain injury in in vitro and in vivo ischemic models. However, the effect of NAD+ on mitochondrial biogenesis and function in ischemia has not been well investigated. In the present study, we used an in vitro glutamate excitotoxicity model of primary cultured cortical neurons to study the effect of NAD+ on apoptotic neuronal death and mitochondrial biogenesis and function. Our results show that supplementation of NAD+ could effectively reduce apoptotic neuronal death, and apoptotic inducing factor translocation after neurons were challenged with excitotoxic glutamate stimulation. Using different approaches including confocal imaging, mitochondrial DNA measurement and Western blot analysis of PGC-1 and NRF-1, we also found that NAD+ could significantly attenuate glutamate-induced mitochondrial fragmentation and the impairment of mitochondrial biogenesis. Furthermore, NAD+ treatment effectively inhibited mitochondrial membrane potential depolarization and NADH redistribution after excitotoxic glutamate stimulation. Taken together, our results demonstrated that NAD+ is capable of inhibiting apoptotic neuronal death after glutamate excitotoxicity via preserving mitochondrial biogenesis and integrity. Our findings provide insights into potential neuroprotective strategies in ischemic stroke. PMID:25387075

  18. 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.

  19. Regulator of G protein signaling 5 (RGS5) inhibits sonic hedgehog function in mouse cortical neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Chuanliang; Hu, Qiongqiong; Jing, Jia; Zhang, Yun; Jin, Jing; Zhang, Liulei; Mu, Lili; Liu, Yumei; Sun, Bo; Zhang, Tongshuai; Kong, Qingfei; Wang, Guangyou; Wang, Dandan; Zhang, Yao; Liu, Xijun; Zhao, Wei; Wang, Jinghua; Feng, Tao; Li, Hulun

    2017-09-01

    Regulator of G protein signaling 5 (RGS5) acts as a GTPase-activating protein (GAP) for the Gαi subunit and negatively regulates G protein-coupled receptor signaling. However, its presence and function in postmitotic differentiated primary neurons remains largely uncharacterized. During neural development, sonic hedgehog (Shh) signaling is involved in cell signaling pathways via Gαi activity. In particular, Shh signaling is essential for embryonic neural tube patterning, which has been implicated in neuronal polarization involving neurite outgrowth. Here, we examined whether RGS5 regulates Shh signaling in neurons. RGS5 transcripts were found to be expressed in cortical neurons and their expression gradually declined in a time-dependent manner in culture system. When an adenovirus expressing RGS5 was introduced into an in vitro cell culture model of cortical neurons, RGS5 overexpression significantly reduced neurite outgrowth and FM4-64 uptake, while cAMP-PKA signaling was also affected. These findings suggest that RGS5 inhibits Shh function during neurite outgrowth and the presynaptic terminals of primary cortical neurons mature via modulation of cAMP. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Different requirements of functional telomeres in neural stem cells and terminally differentiated neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lobanova, Anastasia; She, Robert; Pieraut, Simon; Clapp, Charlie; Maximov, Anton; Denchi, Eros Lazzerini

    2017-04-01

    Telomeres have been studied extensively in peripheral tissues, but their relevance in the nervous system remains poorly understood. Here, we examine the roles of telomeres at distinct stages of murine brain development by using lineage-specific genetic ablation of TRF2, an essential component of the shelterin complex that protects chromosome ends from the DNA damage response machinery. We found that functional telomeres are required for embryonic and adult neurogenesis, but their uncapping has surprisingly no detectable consequences on terminally differentiated neurons. Conditional knockout of TRF2 in post-mitotic immature neurons had virtually no detectable effect on circuit assembly, neuronal gene expression, and the behavior of adult animals despite triggering massive end-to-end chromosome fusions across the brain. These results suggest that telomeres are dispensable in terminally differentiated neurons and provide mechanistic insight into cognitive abnormalities associated with aberrant telomere length in humans. © 2017 Lobanova et al.; Published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press.

  1. In Vivo Neuromechanics: Decoding Causal Motor Neuron Behavior with Resulting Musculoskeletal Function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sartori, Massimo; Yavuz, Utku Ş; Farina, Dario

    2017-10-18

    Human motor function emerges from the interaction between the neuromuscular and the musculoskeletal systems. Despite the knowledge of the mechanisms underlying neural and mechanical functions, there is no relevant understanding of the neuro-mechanical interplay in the neuro-musculo-skeletal system. This currently represents the major challenge to the understanding of human movement. We address this challenge by proposing a paradigm for investigating spinal motor neuron contribution to skeletal joint mechanical function in the intact human in vivo. We employ multi-muscle spatial sampling and deconvolution of high-density fiber electrical activity to decode accurate α-motor neuron discharges across five lumbosacral segments in the human spinal cord. We use complete α-motor neuron discharge series to drive forward subject-specific models of the musculoskeletal system in open-loop with no corrective feedback. We perform validation tests where mechanical moments are estimated with no knowledge of reference data over unseen conditions. This enables accurate blinded estimation of ankle function purely from motor neuron information. Remarkably, this enables observing causal associations between spinal motor neuron activity and joint moment control. We provide a new class of neural data-driven musculoskeletal modeling formulations for bridging between movement neural and mechanical levels in vivo with implications for understanding motor physiology, pathology, and recovery.

  2. Regulated appearance of NMDA receptor subunits and channel functions during in vitro neuronal differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jelitai, Márta; Schlett, Katalin; Varju, Patrícia; Eisel, Ulrich; Madarász, Emília

    2002-04-01

    The schedule of NMDA receptor subunit expression and the appearance of functional NMDA-gated ion channels were investigated during the retinoic acid (RA) induced neuronal differentiation of NE-4C, a p53-deficient mouse neuroectodermal progenitor cell line. NR2A, NR2B, and NR2D subunit transcripts were present in both nondifferentiated and neuronally differentiated cultures, while NR2C subunits were expressed only transiently, during the early period of neural differentiation. Several splice variants of NR1 were detected in noninduced progenitors and in RA-induced cells, except the N1 exon containing transcripts that appeared after the fourth day of induction, when neuronal processes were already formed. NR1 and NR2A subunit proteins were detected both in nondifferentiated progenitor cells and in neurons, while the mature form of NR2B subunit protein appeared only at the time of neuronal process elongation. Despite the early presence of NR1 and NR2A subunits, NMDA-evoked responses could be detected in NE-4C neurons only after the sixth day of induction, coinciding in time with the expression of the mature NR2B subunit. The formation of functional NMDA receptors also coincided with the appearance of synapsin I and synaptophysin. The lag period between the production of the subunits and the onset of channel function suggests that subunits capable of channel formation cannot form functional NMDA receptors until a certain stage of neuronal commitment. Thus, the in vitro neurogenesis by NE-4C cells provides a suitable tool to investigate some inherent regulatory processes involved in the initial maturation of NMDA receptor complexes. Copyright 2002 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  3. Retinal function in patients with the neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis phenotype

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth Maria Aparecida Barasnevicius Quagliato

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Purpose: To analyze the clinical features, visual acuity, and full-field electroretinogram (ERG findings of 15 patients with the neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis (NCL phenotype and to establish the role of ERG testing in NCL diagnosis. Methods: The medical records of five patients with infantile NCL, five with Jansky-Bielschowsky disease, and five with juvenile NCL who underwent full-field ERG testing were retrospectively analyzed. Results: Progressive vision loss was the initial symptom in 66.7% of patients and was isolated or associated with ataxia, epilepsy, and neurodevelopmental involution. Epilepsy was present in 93.3% of patients, of whom 86.6% presented with neurodevelopmental involution. Fundus findings ranged from normal to pigmentary/atrophic abnormalities. Cone-rod, rod-cone, and both types of dysfunction were observed in six, one, and eight patients, respectively. Conclusion: In our study, all patients with the NCL phenotype had abnormal ERG findings, and the majority exhibited both cone-rod and rod-cone dysfunction. We conclude that ERG is a valuable tool for the characterization of visual dysfunction in patients with the NCL phenotype and is useful for diagnosis.

  4. Morphological and functional correlates of VIP neurons in cerebral cortex

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Magistretti, P.J.; Morrison, J.H.; Shoemaker, W.J.; Bloom, F.E.

    1984-01-01

    Vasoactive Intestinal Polypeptide (VIP) promotes the hydrolysis of 3H-glycogen newly synthesized from 3H-glucose by mouse cortical slices. This effect occurs rapidly, approximately 50% of the maximal effect being reached within one minute. The maximal effect is achieved after 5 minutes and maintained for at least 25 minutes. Furthermore the glycogenolytic effect of VIP is reversible, and pharmacologically specific. Thus several neuropeptides present in cerebral cortex such as cholecystokinin-8, somatostatin-28, somatostatin-14, met-enkephalin, leu-enkephalin, do not affect 3H-glycogen levels. VIP fragments 6-28, 16-28 and 21-28 are similarly inactive. Furthermore, among the peptides which share structural homologies with VIP, such as glucagon, secretin, PHI-27 and Gastric Inhibitory Peptide, only secretin and PHI-27 promote 3H-glycogen hydrolysis, with EC50 of 500 and 300 nM respectively, compared to an EC50 of 25 nM for VIP. Immunohistochemical observations indicate that each VIP-containing bipolar cell is identified with a unique radical cortical volume, which is generally between 15-60 micrograms in diameter and overlaps with the contiguous domains of neighbouring VIP-containing bipolar cells. Thus this set of biochemical and morphological observations support the notion that VIP neurons have the capacity to regulate the availability of energy substrates in cerebral cortex locally, within circumscribed, contiguous, radial domains

  5. Gamma Radiation (5-10 Gy) Impairs Neuronal Function in the Guinea Pig Hippocampus

    Science.gov (United States)

    1993-01-01

    Radiation (5-10 Gy) Impairs Neuronal Function in the Guinea Pig Hippocampus TERRY C. PELLMAR AND DENNIS L. LEPINSKI Ph.vsiology Department..Irmned Forces...L. Gamma Radiation ioral effects. Within hours of irradiation with 10 Gy and (5- 10 Gy) Impairs Neuronal Function in the Guinea Pig Hippo- less...acti v- Guinea pigs were exposed to 5 and 10 Gy ’y radiation. Hippo- ity (9) are evident. campal brain slices were isolated 30 min, I day, 3 days and 5

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

    KAUST Repository

    Jeong, Suh Young; Crooks, Daniel R.; Wilson-Ollivierre, Hayden; Ghosh, Manik C.; Sougrat, Rachid; Lee, Jaekwon; Cooperman, Sharon; Mitchell, James B.; Beaumont, Carole; Rouault, Tracey A.

    2011-01-01

    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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Linking Neurons to Network Function and Behavior by Two-Photon Holographic Optogenetics and Volumetric Imaging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dal Maschio, Marco; Donovan, Joseph C; Helmbrecht, Thomas O; Baier, Herwig

    2017-05-17

    We introduce a flexible method for high-resolution interrogation of circuit function, which combines simultaneous 3D two-photon stimulation of multiple targeted neurons, volumetric functional imaging, and quantitative behavioral tracking. This integrated approach was applied to dissect how an ensemble of premotor neurons in the larval zebrafish brain drives a basic motor program, the bending of the tail. We developed an iterative photostimulation strategy to identify minimal subsets of channelrhodopsin (ChR2)-expressing neurons that are sufficient to initiate tail movements. At the same time, the induced network activity was recorded by multiplane GCaMP6 imaging across the brain. From this dataset, we computationally identified activity patterns associated with distinct components of the elicited behavior and characterized the contributions of individual neurons. Using photoactivatable GFP (paGFP), we extended our protocol to visualize single functionally identified neurons and reconstruct their morphologies. Together, this toolkit enables linking behavior to circuit activity with unprecedented resolution. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Determinants of functional coupling between astrocytes and respiratory neurons in the pre-Bötzinger complex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian Schnell

    Full Text Available Respiratory neuronal network activity is thought to require efficient functioning of astrocytes. Here, we analyzed neuron-astrocyte communication in the pre-Bötzinger Complex (preBötC of rhythmic slice preparations from neonatal mice. In astrocytes that exhibited rhythmic potassium fluxes and glutamate transporter currents, we did not find a translation of respiratory neuronal activity into phase-locked astroglial calcium signals. In up to 20% of astrocytes, 2-photon calcium imaging revealed spontaneous calcium fluctuations, although with no correlation to neuronal activity. Calcium signals could be elicited in preBötC astrocytes by metabotropic glutamate receptor activation or after inhibition of glial glutamate uptake. In the latter case, astrocyte calcium elevation preceded a surge of respiratory neuron discharge activity followed by network failure. We conclude that astrocytes do not exhibit respiratory-rhythmic calcium fluctuations when they are able to prevent synaptic glutamate accumulation. Calcium signaling is, however, observed when glutamate transport processes in astrocytes are suppressed or neuronal discharge activity is excessive.

  11. Neuronal Function in Male Sprague Dawley Rats During Normal ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    olayemitoyin

    Summary: During normal ageing, there are physiological changes especially in high energy ... science and technology (U.S. Bureau of the Census ... strategies that can be applied to preserve function with ..... Intelligent Technology for an.

  12. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  14. The design of a new spiking neuron using dual work function silicon nanowire transistors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bindal, Ahmet; Hamedi-Hagh, Sotoudeh

    2007-01-01

    A new spike neuron cell is designed using vertically grown, undoped silicon nanowire transistors. This study presents an entire design cycle from designing and optimizing vertical nanowire transistors for minimal power dissipation to realizing a neuron cell and measuring its dynamic power consumption, performance and layout area. The design cycle starts with determining individual metal gate work functions for NMOS and PMOS transistors as a function of wire radius to produce a 300 mV threshold voltage. The wire radius and effective channel length are subsequently varied to find a common body geometry for both transistors that yields smaller than 1 pA OFF current while producing maximum drive currents. A spike neuron cell is subsequently built using these transistors to measure its transient performance, power dissipation and layout area. Post-layout simulation results indicate that the neuron consumes 0.397 μW to generate a +1 V and 1.12 μW to generate a -1 V output pulse for a fan-out of five synapses at 500 MHz; the power dissipation increases by approximately 3 nW for each additional synapse at the output for generating either pulse. The neuron circuit occupies approximately 0.27 μm 2

  15. Snapin-regulated late endosomal transport is critical for efficient autophagy-lysosomal function in neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cai, Qian; Lu, Li; Tian, Jin-Hua; Zhu, Yi-Bing; Qiao, Haifa; Sheng, Zu-Hang

    2010-10-06

    Neuron maintenance and survival require late endocytic transport from distal processes to the soma where lysosomes are predominantly localized. Here, we report a role for Snapin in attaching dynein to late endosomes through its intermediate chain (DIC). snapin(-/-) neurons exhibit aberrant accumulation of immature lysosomes, clustering and impaired retrograde transport of late endosomes along processes, reduced lysosomal proteolysis due to impaired delivery of internalized proteins and hydrolase precursors from late endosomes to lysosomes, and impaired clearance of autolysosomes, combined with reduced neuron viability and neurodegeneration. The phenotypes are rescued by expressing the snapin transgene, but not the DIC-binding-defective Snapin-L99K mutant. Snapin overexpression in wild-type neurons enhances late endocytic transport and lysosomal function, whereas expressing the mutant defective in Snapin-DIC coupling shows a dominant-negative effect. Altogether, our study highlights new mechanistic insights into how Snapin-DIC coordinates retrograde transport and late endosomal-lysosomal trafficking critical for autophagy-lysosomal function, and thus neuronal homeostasis. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

  17. Thyroid hormone is required for hypothalamic neurons regulating cardiovascular functions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mittag, J.; Lyons, D.J.; Sällström, J.; Vujoviv, M.; Dudazy-Gralla, S.; Warner, A.; Wallis, K.; Alkemade, A.; Nordström, K.; Monyer, H.; Broberger, C.; Arner, A.; Vennström, B.

    2013-01-01

    Thyroid hormone is well known for its profound direct effects on cardiovascular function and metabolism. Recent evidence, however, suggests that the hormone also regulates these systems indirectly through the central nervous system. While some of the molecular mechanisms underlying the hormone’s

  18. ATF3 expression improves motor function in the ALS mouse model by promoting motor neuron survival and retaining muscle innervation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seijffers, Rhona; Zhang, Jiangwen; Matthews, Jonathan C; Chen, Adam; Tamrazian, Eric; Babaniyi, Olusegun; Selig, Martin; Hynynen, Meri; Woolf, Clifford J; Brown, Robert H

    2014-01-28

    ALS is a fatal neurodegenerative disease characterized by a progressive loss of motor neurons and atrophy of distal axon terminals in muscle, resulting in loss of motor function. Motor end plates denervated by axonal retraction of dying motor neurons are partially reinnervated by remaining viable motor neurons; however, this axonal sprouting is insufficient to compensate for motor neuron loss. Activating transcription factor 3 (ATF3) promotes neuronal survival and axonal growth. Here, we reveal that forced expression of ATF3 in motor neurons of transgenic SOD1(G93A) ALS mice delays neuromuscular junction denervation by inducing axonal sprouting and enhancing motor neuron viability. Maintenance of neuromuscular junction innervation during the course of the disease in ATF3/SOD1(G93A) mice is associated with a substantial delay in muscle atrophy and improved motor performance. Although disease onset and mortality are delayed, disease duration is not affected. This study shows that adaptive axonal growth-promoting mechanisms can substantially improve motor function in ALS and importantly, that augmenting viability of the motor neuron soma and maintaining functional neuromuscular junction connections are both essential elements in therapy for motor neuron disease in the SOD1(G93A) mice. Accordingly, effective protection of optimal motor neuron function requires restitution of multiple dysregulated cellular pathways.

  19. Regulated appearance of NMDA receptor subunits and channel functions during in vitro neuronal differentiation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jelitai, Márta; Schlett, Katalin; Varju, Patrícia; Eisel, Ulrich; Madarász, Emília

    The schedule of NMDA receptor subunit expression and the appearance of functional NMDA-gated ion channels were investigated during the retinoic acid (RA) induced neuronal differentiation of NE-4C, a p53-deficient mouse neuroectodermal progenitor cell line. NR2A. NR2B, and NR2D subunit transcripts

  20. 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 ...

  1. A powerful transgenic tool for fate mapping and functional analysis of newly generated neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vogt Weisenhorn Daniela M

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Lack of appropriate tools and techniques to study fate and functional integration of newly generated neurons has so far hindered understanding of neurogenesis' relevance under physiological and pathological conditions. Current analyses are either dependent on mitotic labeling, for example BrdU-incorporation or retroviral infection, or on the detection of transient immature neuronal markers. Here, we report a transgenic mouse model (DCX-CreERT2 for time-resolved fate analysis of newly generated neurons. This model is based on the expression of a tamoxifen-inducible Cre recombinase under the control of a doublecortin (DCX promoter, which is specific for immature neuronal cells in the CNS. Results In the DCX-CreERT2 transgenic mice, expression of CreERT2 was restricted to DCX+ cells. In the CNS of transgenic embryos and adult DCX-CreERT2 mice, tamoxifen administration caused the transient translocation of CreERT2 to the nucleus, allowing for the recombination of loxP-flanked sequences. In our system, tamoxifen administration at E14.5 resulted in reporter gene activation throughout the developing CNS of transgenic embryos. In the adult CNS, neurogenic regions were the primary sites of tamoxifen-induced reporter gene activation. In addition, reporter expression could also be detected outside of neurogenic regions in cells physiologically expressing DCX (e.g. piriform cortex, corpus callosum, hypothalamus. Four weeks after recombination, the vast majority of reporter-expressing cells were found to co-express NeuN, revealing the neuronal fate of DCX+ cells upon maturation. Conclusions This first validation demonstrates that our new DCX-CreERT2 transgenic mouse model constitutes a powerful tool to investigate neurogenesis, migration and their long-term fate of neuronal precursors. Moreover, it allows for a targeted activation or deletion of specific genes in neuronal precursors and will thereby contribute to unravel the molecular

  2. Cell Death, Neuronal Plasticity and Functional Loading in the Development of the Central Nervous System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keefe, J. R.

    1985-01-01

    Research on the precise timing and regulation of neuron production and maturation in the vestibular and visual systems of Wistar rats and several inbred strains of mice (C57B16 and Pallid mutant) concentrated upon establishing a timing baseline for mitotic development of the neurons of the vestibular nuclei and the peripheral vestibular sensory structures (maculae, cristae). This involved studies of the timing and site of neuronal cell birth and preliminary studies of neuronal cell death in both central and peripheral elements of the mammalian vestibular system. Studies on neuronal generation and maturation in the retina were recently added to provide a mechanism for more properly defining the in utero' developmental age of the individual fetal subject and to closely monitor potential transplacental effects of environmentally stressed maternal systems. Information is given on current efforts concentrating upon the (1) perinatal period of development (E18 thru P14) and (2) the role of cell death in response to variation in the functional loading of the vestibular and proprioreceptive systems in developing mammalian organisms.

  3. New Pharmacotherapy Targeting Cognitive Dysfunction of Schizophrenia via Modulation of GABA Neuronal Function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uehara, Takashi; Sumiyoshi, Tomiki; Kurachi, Masayoshi

    2015-01-01

    Schizophrenia is considered a neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative disorder. Cognitive impairment is a core symptom in patients with the illness, and has been suggested a major predictor of functional outcomes. Reduction of parvalbumin (PV)-positive γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) interneurons has been associated with the pathophysiology of schizophrenia, in view of the link between the abnormality of GABA neurons and cognitive impairments of the disease. It is assumed that an imbalance of excitatory and inhibitory (E-I) activity induced by low activity of glutamatergic projections and PV-positive GABA interneurons in the prefrontal cortex resulted in sustained neural firing and gamma oscillation, leading to impaired cognitive function. Therefore, it is important to develop novel pharmacotherapy targeting GABA neurons and their activities. Clinical evidence suggests serotonin (5-HT) 1A receptor agonist improves cognitive disturbances of schizophrenia, consistent with results from preclinical studies, through mechanism that corrects E-I imbalance via the suppression of GABA neural function. On the other hand, T-817MA, a novel neurotrophic agent, ameliorated loss of PV-positive GABA neurons in the medial prefrontal cortex and reduction of gamma-band activity, as well as cognitive dysfunction in animal model of schizophrenia. In conclusion, a pharmacotherapy to alleviate abnormalities in GABA neurons through 5-HT1A agonists and T-817MA is expected to prevent the onset and/or progression of schizophrenia.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Watanabe, Takehiko; Yanai, Kazuhiko

    2001-01-01

    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)

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    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)

  6. Anti-Tribbles Pseudokinase 2 (TRIB2)-Immunization Modulates Hypocretin/Orexin Neuronal Functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanaka, Susumu; Honda, Yoshiko; Honda, Makoto; Yamada, Hisao; Honda, Kazuki; Kodama, Tohru

    2017-01-01

    Recent findings showed that 16%-26% of narcolepsy patients were positive for anti-tribbles pseudokinase 2 (TRIB2) antibody, and the intracerebroventricular administration of immunoglobulin-G purified from anti-TRIB2 positive narcolepsy patients caused hypocretin/orexin neuron loss. We investigated the pathophysiological role of TRIB2 antibody using TRIB2-immunized rats and hypocretin/ataxin-3 transgenic (ataxin-3) mice. Plasma, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), and hypothalamic tissues from TRIB2-immunized rats were collected. Anti-TRIB2 titers, hypocretin contents, mRNA expressions, the cell count of hypocretin neurons, and immunoreactivity of anti-TRIB2 antibodies on hypocretin neurons were investigated. The plasma from ataxin-3 mice was also used to determine the anti-TRIB2 antibody titer changes following the loss of hypocretin neurons. TRIB2 antibody titers increased in the plasma and CSF of TRIB2-immunized rats. The hypothalamic tissue immunostained with the sera from TRIB2-immunized rats revealed positive signals in the cytoplasm of hypcretin neurons. While no changes were found regarding hypothalamic hypocretin contents or cell counts, but there were significant decreases of the hypocretin mRNA level and release into the CSF. The plasma from over 26-week-old ataxin-3 mice, at the advanced stage of hypocretin cell destruction, showed positive reactions against TRIB2 antigen, and positive plasma also reacted with murine hypothalamic hypocretin neurons. Our results suggest that the general activation of the immune system modulates the functions of hypocretin neurons. The absence of a change in hypocretin cell populations suggested that factors other than anti-TRIB2 antibody play a part in the loss of hypocretin neurons in narcolepsy. The increased anti-TRIB2 antibody after the destruction of hypocretin neurons suggest that anti-TRIB2 antibody in narcolepsy patients is the consequence rather than the inciting cause of hypocretin cell destruction. © Sleep Research

  7. Midbrain and forebrain patterning delivers immunocytochemically and functionally similar populations of neuropeptide Y containing GABAergic neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khaira, S K; Nefzger, C M; Beh, S J; Pouton, C W; Haynes, J M

    2011-09-01

    Neurons differentiated in vitro from embryonic stem cells (ESCs) have the potential to serve both as models of disease states and in drug discovery programs. In this study, we use sonic hedgehog (SHH) and fibroblast growth factor 8 (FGF-8) to enrich for forebrain and midbrain phenotypes from mouse ESCs. We then investigate, using Ca(2+) imaging and [(3)H]-GABA release studies, whether the GABAergic neurons produced exhibit distinct functional phenotypes. At day 24 of differentiation, reverse transcriptase-PCR showed the presence of both forebrain (Bf-1, Hesx1, Pgc-1α, Six3) and midbrain (GATA2, GATA3) selective mRNA markers in developing forebrain-enriched cultures. All markers were present in midbrain cultures except for Bf-1 and Pgc-1α. Irrespective of culture conditions all GABA immunoreactive neurons were also immunoreactive to neuropeptide Y (NPY) antibodies. Forebrain and midbrain GABAergic neurons responded to ATP (1 mM), L-glutamate (30 μM), noradrenaline (30 μM), acetylcholine (30 μM) and dopamine (30 μM), with similar elevations of intracellular Ca(2+)([Ca(2+)](i)). The presence of GABA(A) and GABA(B) antagonists, bicuculline (30 μM) and CGP55845 (1 μM), increased the elevation of [Ca(2+)](i) in response to dopamine (30 μM) in midbrain, but not forebrain GABAergic neurons. All agonists, except dopamine, elicited similar [(3)H]-GABA release from forebrain and midbrain cultures. Dopamine (30 μM) did not stimulate significant [(3)H]-GABA release in midbrain cultures, although it was effective in forebrain cultures. This study shows that differentiating neurons toward a midbrain fate restricts the expression of forebrain markers. Forebrain differentiation results in the expression of forebrain and midbrain markers. All GABA(+) neurons contain NPY, and show similar agonist-induced elevations of [Ca(2+)](i) and [(3)H]-GABA release. This study indicates that the pharmacological phenotype of these particular neurons may be independent of the addition of

  8. Evaluation of mRNA expression levels and electrophysiological function of neuron-like cells derived from canine bone marrow stromal cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakano, Rei; Edamura, Kazuya; Sugiya, Hiroshi; Narita, Takanori; Okabayashi, Ken; Moritomo, Tadaaki; Teshima, Kenji; Asano, Kazushi; Nakayama, Tomohiro

    2013-10-01

    To investigate the in vitro differentiation of canine bone marrow stromal cells (BMSCs) into functional, mature neurons. Bone marrow from 6 adult dogs. BMSCs were isolated from bone marrow and chemically induced to develop into neurons. The morphology of the BMSCs during neuronal induction was monitored, and immunocytochemical analyses for neuron markers were performed after the induction. Real-time PCR methods were used to evaluate the mRNA expression levels of markers for neural stem or progenitor cells, neurons, and ion channels, and western blotting was used to assess the expression of neuronal proteins before and after neuronal induction. The electrophysiological properties of the neuron-like cells induced from canine BMSCs were evaluated with fluorescent dye to monitor Ca(2)+ influx. Canine BMSCs developed a neuron-like morphology after neuronal induction. Immunocytochemical analysis revealed that these neuron-like cells were positive for neuron markers. After induction, the cells' mRNA expression levels of almost all neuron and ion channel markers increased, and the protein expression levels of nestin and neurofilament-L increased significantly. However, the neuron-like cells derived from canine BMSCs did not have the Ca(2)+ influx characteristic of spiking neurons. Although canine BMSCs had neuron-like morphological and biochemical properties after induction, they did not develop the electrophysiological characteristics of neurons. Thus, these results have suggested that canine BMSCs could have the capacity to differentiate into a neuronal lineage, but the differentiation protocol used may have been insufficient to induce development into functional neurons.

  9. Neurogenic Radial Glia-like Cells in Meninges Migrate and Differentiate into Functionally Integrated Neurons in the Neonatal Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bifari, Francesco; Decimo, Ilaria; Pino, Annachiara; Llorens-Bobadilla, Enric; Zhao, Sheng; Lange, Christian; Panuccio, Gabriella; Boeckx, Bram; Thienpont, Bernard; Vinckier, Stefan; Wyns, Sabine; Bouché, Ann; Lambrechts, Diether; Giugliano, Michele; Dewerchin, Mieke; Martin-Villalba, Ana; Carmeliet, Peter

    2017-03-02

    Whether new neurons are added in the postnatal cerebral cortex is still debated. Here, we report that the meninges of perinatal mice contain a population of neurogenic progenitors formed during embryonic development that migrate to the caudal cortex and differentiate into Satb2 + neurons in cortical layers II-IV. The resulting neurons are electrically functional and integrated into local microcircuits. Single-cell RNA sequencing identified meningeal cells with distinct transcriptome signatures characteristic of (1) neurogenic radial glia-like cells (resembling neural stem cells in the SVZ), (2) neuronal cells, and (3) a cell type with an intermediate phenotype, possibly representing radial glia-like meningeal cells differentiating to neuronal cells. Thus, we have identified a pool of embryonically derived radial glia-like cells present in the meninges that migrate and differentiate into functional neurons in the neonatal cerebral cortex. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Differential subcellular distribution of ion channels and the diversity of neuronal function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nusser, Zoltan

    2012-06-01

    Following the astonishing molecular diversity of voltage-gated ion channels that was revealed in the past few decades, the ion channel repertoire expressed by neurons has been implicated as the major factor governing their functional heterogeneity. Although the molecular structure of ion channels is a key determinant of their biophysical properties, their subcellular distribution and densities on the surface of nerve cells are just as important for fulfilling functional requirements. Recent results obtained with high resolution quantitative localization techniques revealed complex, subcellular compartment-specific distribution patterns of distinct ion channels. Here I suggest that within a given neuron type every ion channel has a unique cell surface distribution pattern, with the functional consequence that this dramatically increases the computational power of nerve cells. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Methyl-CpG binding-protein 2 function in cholinergic neurons mediates cardiac arrhythmogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herrera, José A; Ward, Christopher S; Wehrens, Xander H T; Neul, Jeffrey L

    2016-11-15

    Sudden unexpected death occurs in one quarter of deaths in Rett Syndrome (RTT), a neurodevelopmental disorder caused by mutations in Methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2). People with RTT show a variety of autonomic nervous system (ANS) abnormalities and mouse models show similar problems including QTc interval prolongation and hypothermia. To explore the role of cardiac problems in sudden death in RTT, we characterized cardiac rhythm in mice lacking Mecp2 function. Male and female mutant mice exhibited spontaneous cardiac rhythm abnormalities including bradycardic events, sinus pauses, atrioventricular block, premature ventricular contractions, non-sustained ventricular arrhythmias, and increased heart rate variability. Death was associated with spontaneous cardiac arrhythmias and complete conduction block. Atropine treatment reduced cardiac arrhythmias in mutant mice, implicating overactive parasympathetic tone. To explore the role of MeCP2 within the parasympathetic neurons, we selectively removed MeCP2 function from cholinergic neurons (MeCP2 ChAT KO), which recapitulated the cardiac rhythm abnormalities, hypothermia, and early death seen in RTT male mice. Conversely, restoring MeCP2 only in cholinergic neurons rescued these phenotypes. Thus, MeCP2 in cholinergic neurons is necessary and sufficient for autonomic cardiac control, thermoregulation, and survival, and targeting the overactive parasympathetic system may be a useful therapeutic strategy to prevent sudden unexpected death in RTT.

  12. 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.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lu, Hu; Yang, Shengtao; Song, Yuqing; Wei, Hui

    2014-01-01

    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

  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. Roles of Fukutin, the Gene Responsible for Fukuyama-Type Congenital Muscular Dystrophy, in Neurons: Possible Involvement in Synaptic Function and Neuronal Migration

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hiroi, Atsuko; Yamamoto, Tomoko; Shibata, Noriyuki; Osawa, Makiko; Kobayashi, Makio

    2011-01-01

    Fukutin is a gene responsible for Fukuyama-type congenital muscular dystrophy (FCMD), accompanying ocular and brain malformations represented by cobblestone lissencephaly. Fukutin is related to basement membrane formation via the glycosylation of α-dystoglycan (α-DG), and astrocytes play a crucial role in the pathogenesis of the brain lesion. On the other hand, its precise function in neurons is unknown. In this experiment, the roles of fukutin in mature and immature neurons were examined using brains from control subjects and FCMD patients and cultured neuronal cell lines. In quantitative PCR, the expression level of fukutin looked different depending on the region of the brain examined. A similar tendency in DG expression appears to indicate a relation between fukutin and α-DG in mature neurons. An increase of DG mRNA and core α-DG in the FCMD cerebrum also supports the relation. In immunohistochemistry, dot-like positive reactions for VIA4-1, one of the antibodies detecting the glycosylated α-DG, in Purkinje cells suggest that fukutin is related to at least a post-synaptic function via the glycosylation of α-DG. As for immature neurons, VIA4-1 was predominantly positive in cells before and during migration with expression of fukutin, which suggest a participation of fukutin in neuronal migration via the glycosylation of α-DG. Moreover, fukutin may prevent neuronal differentiation, because its expression was significantly lower in the adult cerebrum and in differentiated cultured cells. A knockdown of fukutin was considered to induce differentiation in cultured cells. Fukutin seems to be necessary to keep migrating neurons immature during migration, and also to support migration via α-DG

  16. Nuclear organization in the spinal cord depends on motor neuron lamination orchestrated by catenin and afadin function

    OpenAIRE

    Dewitz, C.; Pimpinella, S.; Hackel, P.; Akalin, A.; Jessell, T.M.; Zampieri, N.

    2018-01-01

    Motor neurons in the spinal cord are found grouped in nuclear structures termed pools, whose position is precisely orchestrated during development. Despite the emerging role of pool organization in the assembly of spinal circuits, little is known about the morphogenetic programs underlying the patterning of motor neuron subtypes. We applied three-dimensional analysis of motor neuron position to reveal the roles and contributions of cell adhesive function by inactivating N-cadherin, catenin, a...

  17. 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

  18. Assessment of cardiac neuronal function with iodine-123 MIBG scintigraphy in children with idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Maunoury, Ch.; Sebahoun, St.; Hallaj, I.; Barritault, L.; Acar, Ph.; Sidi, D.; Kachaner, J.; Agostini, D.; Bouvard, G.

    2000-01-01

    The I-123 MIBG cardiac scintigraphy can assess norepinephrine uptake. It has been showed that cardiac adrenergic neuronal function was impaired in adults with dilated cardiomyopathy. The aim of this prospective study was to assess cardiac neuronal function in children with idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) and to compare cardiac uptake of I-123 MIBG with left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF). We studied 26 consecutive patients with idiopathic DCM, aged 44 ± 50 months, and 12 controls, aged 49 ±65 months. A planar scintigraphy was performed in all children 4 hours after intravenous injection of 20 to 75 MBq of I-123 MIBG. A static anterior view was acquired for 10 minutes. Cardiac uptake of I-123 MIBG was expressed as the heart to mediastinum count ratio (HMR). Equilibrium radionuclide angiography was performed following a standard protocol. Cardiac uptake of I-123 MIBG was significantly decreased in patients with idiopathic DCM when compared with cardiac uptake in controls (172±34% vs 277±14%, P<0.0001. There was a good correlation between RCM and LVEF in patients with idiopathic DCM (y = 2.5 x +113.3, r = 0.80, P < 0.0001). In conclusion, cardiac neuronal function was impaired in children with idiopathic DCM and related to impairment of left ventricular function. (author)

  19. EEG study of the mirror neuron system in children with high functioning autism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raymaekers, Ruth; Wiersema, Jan Roelf; Roeyers, Herbert

    2009-12-22

    Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are characterised by an impaired imitation, thought to be critical for early affective, social and communicative development. One neurological system proposed to underlie this function is the mirror neuron system (MNS) and previous research has suggested a dysfunctional MNS in ASD. The EEG mu frequency, more precisely the reduction of the mu power, is considered to be an index for mirror neuron functioning. In this work, EEG registrations are used to evaluate the mirror neuron functioning of twenty children with high functioning autism (HFA) between 8 and 13 years. Their mu suppression to self-executed and observed movement is compared to typically developing peers and related to age, intelligence and symptom severity. Both groups show significant mu suppression to both self and observed hand movements. No group differences are found in either condition. These results do not support the hypothesis that HFA is associated with a dysfunctional MNS. The discrepancy with previous research is discussed in light of the heterogeneity of the ASD population.

  20. Neuraminidases 3 and 4 regulate neuronal function by catabolizing brain gangliosides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Xuefang; De Aragão, Camila De Britto Pará; Velasco-Martin, Juan P; Priestman, David A; Wu, Harry Y; Takahashi, Kohta; Yamaguchi, Kazunori; Sturiale, Luisella; Garozzo, Domenico; Platt, Frances M; Lamarche-Vane, Nathalie; Morales, Carlos R; Miyagi, Taeko; Pshezhetsky, Alexey V

    2017-08-01

    Gangliosides (sialylated glycolipids) play an essential role in the CNS by regulating recognition and signaling in neurons. Metabolic blocks in processing and catabolism of gangliosides result in the development of severe neurologic disorders, including gangliosidoses manifesting with neurodegeneration and neuroinflammation. We demonstrate that 2 mammalian enzymes, neuraminidases 3 and 4, play important roles in catabolic processing of brain gangliosides by cleaving terminal sialic acid residues in their glycan chains. In neuraminidase 3 and 4 double-knockout mice, G M3 ganglioside is stored in microglia, vascular pericytes, and neurons, causing micro- and astrogliosis, neuroinflammation, accumulation of lipofuscin bodies, and memory loss, whereas their cortical and hippocampal neurons have lower rate of neuritogenesis in vitro Double-knockout mice also have reduced levels of G M1 ganglioside and myelin in neuronal axons. Furthermore, neuraminidase 3 deficiency drastically increased storage of G M2 in the brain tissues of an asymptomatic mouse model of Tay-Sachs disease, a severe human gangliosidosis, indicating that this enzyme is responsible for the metabolic bypass of β-hexosaminidase A deficiency. Together, our results provide the first in vivo evidence that neuraminidases 3 and 4 have important roles in CNS function by catabolizing gangliosides and preventing their storage in lipofuscin bodies.-Pan, X., De Britto Pará De Aragão, C., Velasco-Martin, J. P., Priestman, D. A., Wu, H. Y., Takahashi, K., Yamaguchi, K., Sturiale, L., Garozzo, D., Platt, F. M., Lamarche-Vane, N., Morales, C. R., Miyagi, T., Pshezhetsky, A. V. Neuraminidases 3 and 4 regulate neuronal function by catabolizing brain gangliosides. © FASEB.

  1. Sim1 Neurons Are Sufficient for MC4R-Mediated Sexual Function in Male Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semple, Erin; Hill, Jennifer W

    2018-01-01

    Sexual dysfunction is a poorly understood condition that affects up to one-third of men around the world. Existing treatments that target the periphery do not work for all men. Previous studies have shown that central melanocortins, which are released by pro-opiomelanocortin neurons in the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus, can lead to male erection and increased libido. Several studies specifically implicate the melanocortin 4 receptor (MC4R) in the central control of sexual function, but the specific neural circuitry involved is unknown. We hypothesized that single-minded homolog 1 (Sim1) neurons play an important role in the melanocortin-mediated regulation of male sexual behavior. To test this hypothesis, we examined the sexual behavior of mice expressing MC4R only on Sim1-positive neurons (tbMC4Rsim1 mice) in comparison with tbMC4R null mice and wild-type controls. In tbMC4Rsim1 mice, MC4R reexpression was found in the medial amygdala and paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus. These mice were paired with sexually experienced females, and their sexual function and behavior was scored based on mounting, intromission, and ejaculation. tbMC4R null mice showed a longer latency to mount, a reduced intromission efficiency, and an inability to reach ejaculation. Expression of MC4R only on Sim1 neurons reversed the sexual deficits seen in tbMC4R null mice. This study implicates melanocortin signaling via the MC4R on Sim1 neurons in the central control of male sexual behavior. Copyright © 2018 Endocrine Society.

  2. Intrinsic electrical properties of mammalian neurons and CNS function: a historical perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Llinás, Rodolfo R.

    2014-01-01

    This brief review summarizes work done in mammalian neuroscience concerning the intrinsic electrophysiological properties of four neuronal types; Cerebellar Purkinje cells, inferior olivary cells, thalamic cells, and some cortical interneurons. It is a personal perspective addressing an interesting time in neuroscience when the reflex view of brain function, as the paradigm to understand global neuroscience, began to be modified toward one in which sensory input modulates rather than dictates brain function. The perspective of the paper is not a comprehensive description of the intrinsic electrical properties of all nerve cells but rather addresses a set of cell types that provide indicative examples of mechanisms that modulate brain function. PMID:25408634

  3. INTRINSIC ELECTRICAL PROPERTIES OF MAMMALIAN NEURONS AND CNS FUNCTION: A HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodolfo R Llinas

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available This brief review summarizes work done in mammalian neuroscience concerning the intrinsic electrophysiological properties of four neuronal types; Cerebellar Purkinje cells, inferior olivary cells, thalamic cells, and some cortical interneurons. It is a personal perspective addressing an interesting time in neuroscience when the reflex view of brain function, as the paradigm to understand global neuroscience, began to be modified towards one in which sensory input modulates rather than dictates brain function. The perspective of the paper is not a comprehensive description of the intrinsic electrical properties of all nerve cells but rather addresses a set of cell types that provide indicative examples of mechanisms that modulate brain function.

  4. Von Economo Neurons and Fork Cells: A Neurochemical Signature Linked to Monoaminergic Function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dijkstra, Anke A; Lin, Li-Chun; Nana, Alissa L; Gaus, Stephanie E; Seeley, William W

    2018-01-01

    The human anterior cingulate and frontoinsular cortices are distinguished by 2 unique Layer 5 neuronal morphotypes, the von Economo neurons (VENs) and fork cells, whose biological identity remains mysterious. Insights could impact research on diverse neuropsychiatric diseases to which these cells have been linked. Here, we leveraged the Allen Brain Atlas to evaluate mRNA expression of 176 neurotransmitter-related genes and identified vesicular monoamine transporter 2 (VMAT2), gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) receptor subunit θ (GABRQ), and adrenoreceptor α-1A (ADRA1A) expression in human VENs, fork cells, and a minority of neighboring Layer 5 neurons. We confirmed these results using immunohistochemistry or in situ hybridization. VMAT2 and GABRQ expression was absent in mouse cerebral cortex. Although VMAT2 is known to package monoamines into synaptic vesicles, in VENs and fork cells its expression occurs in the absence of monoamine-synthesizing enzymes or reuptake transporters. Thus, VENs and fork cells may possess a novel, uncharacterized mode of cortical monoaminergic function that distinguishes them from most other mammalian Layer 5 neurons. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  5. Function of a fly motion-sensitive neuron matches eye movements during free flight.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roland Kern

    2005-06-01

    Full Text Available Sensing is often implicitly assumed to be the passive acquisition of information. However, part of the sensory information is generated actively when animals move. For instance, humans shift their gaze actively in a sequence of saccades towards interesting locations in a scene. Likewise, many insects shift their gaze by saccadic turns of body and head, keeping their gaze fixed between saccades. Here we employ a novel panoramic virtual reality stimulator and show that motion computation in a blowfly visual interneuron is tuned to make efficient use of the characteristic dynamics of retinal image flow. The neuron is able to extract information about the spatial layout of the environment by utilizing intervals of stable vision resulting from the saccadic viewing strategy. The extraction is possible because the retinal image flow evoked by translation, containing information about object distances, is confined to low frequencies. This flow component can be derived from the total optic flow between saccades because the residual intersaccadic head rotations are small and encoded at higher frequencies. Information about the spatial layout of the environment can thus be extracted by the neuron in a computationally parsimonious way. These results on neuronal function based on naturalistic, behaviourally generated optic flow are in stark contrast to conclusions based on conventional visual stimuli that the neuron primarily represents a detector for yaw rotations of the animal.

  6. Muscle-Derived GDNF: A Gene Therapeutic Approach for Preserving Motor Neuron Function in ALS

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-08-01

    other disease monitoring strategies ( Beam walking , Electrical impedance myography (EIM) and MRI) were not performed. We considered that the multiple...core: Beam walking and data analysis performed by Svendsen lab staff • Reagents and supplies were not all purchased • Reduced experimental load...function has been shown in acute models of motor neuron injury and in transgenic mouse models of ALS using various delivery strategies by a number

  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

    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...... that blocked neurogenesis contributes to the reported deleterious side effects of this treatment, consisting of memory impairment, dysphoria and lethargy....

  8. Intrinsic electrical properties of mammalian neurons and CNS function: a historical perspective

    OpenAIRE

    Llinás, Rodolfo R.

    2014-01-01

    This brief review summarizes work done in mammalian neuroscience concerning the intrinsic electrophysiological properties of four neuronal types; Cerebellar Purkinje cells, inferior olivary cells, thalamic cells, and some cortical interneurons. It is a personal perspective addressing an interesting time in neuroscience when the reflex view of brain function, as the paradigm to understand global neuroscience, began to be modified towards one in which sensory input modulates rather than dictate...

  9. Absence of alsin function leads to corticospinal motor neuron vulnerability via novel disease mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gautam, Mukesh; Jara, Javier H; Sekerkova, Gabriella; Yasvoina, Marina V; Martina, Marco; Özdinler, P Hande

    2016-03-15

    Mutations in the ALS2 gene result in early-onset amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, infantile-onset ascending hereditary spastic paraplegia and juvenile primary lateral sclerosis, suggesting prominent upper motor neuron involvement. However, the importance of alsin function for corticospinal motor neuron (CSMN) health and stability remains unknown. To date, four separate alsin knockout (Alsin(KO)) mouse models have been generated, and despite hopes of mimicking human pathology, none displayed profound motor function defects. This, however, does not rule out the possibility of neuronal defects within CSMN, which is not easy to detect in these mice. Detailed cellular analysis of CSMN has been hampered due to their limited numbers and the complex and heterogeneous structure of the cerebral cortex. In an effort to visualize CSMN in vivo and to investigate precise aspects of neuronal abnormalities in the absence of alsin function, we generated Alsin(KO)-UeGFP mice, by crossing Alsin(KO) and UCHL1-eGFP mice, a CSMN reporter line. We find that CSMN display vacuolated apical dendrites with increased autophagy, shrinkage of soma size and axonal pathology even in the pons region. Immunocytochemistry coupled with electron microscopy reveal that alsin is important for maintaining cellular cytoarchitecture and integrity of cellular organelles. In its absence, CSMN displays selective defects both in mitochondria and Golgi apparatus. UCHL1-eGFP mice help understand the underlying cellular factors that lead to CSMN vulnerability in diseases, and our findings reveal unique importance of alsin function for CSMN health and stability. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press.

  10. Differential activation of an identified motor neuron and neuromodulation provide Aplysia's retractor muscle an additional function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McManus, Jeffrey M; Lu, Hui; Cullins, Miranda J; Chiel, Hillel J

    2014-08-15

    To survive, animals must use the same peripheral structures to perform a variety of tasks. How does a nervous system employ one muscle to perform multiple functions? We addressed this question through work on the I3 jaw muscle of the marine mollusk Aplysia californica's feeding system. This muscle mediates retraction of Aplysia's food grasper in multiple feeding responses and is innervated by a pool of identified neurons that activate different muscle regions. One I3 motor neuron, B38, is active in the protraction phase, rather than the retraction phase, suggesting the muscle has an additional function. We used intracellular, extracellular, and muscle force recordings in several in vitro preparations as well as recordings of nerve and muscle activity from intact, behaving animals to characterize B38's activation of the muscle and its activity in different behavior types. We show that B38 specifically activates the anterior region of I3 and is specifically recruited during one behavior, swallowing. The function of this protraction-phase jaw muscle contraction is to hold food; thus the I3 muscle has an additional function beyond mediating retraction. We additionally show that B38's typical activity during in vivo swallowing is insufficient to generate force in an unmodulated muscle and that intrinsic and extrinsic modulation shift the force-frequency relationship to allow contraction. Using methods that traverse levels from individual neuron to muscle to intact animal, we show how regional muscle activation, differential motor neuron recruitment, and neuromodulation are key components in Aplysia's generation of multifunctionality. Copyright © 2014 the American Physiological Society.

  11. New Pharmacotherapy Targeting Cognitive Dysfunction of Schizophrenia via Modulation of GABA Neuronal Function

    OpenAIRE

    Jeon, Won Je; Sumiyoshi, Tomiki; Kurachi, Masayoshi

    2015-01-01

    Schizophrenia is considered a neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative disorder. Cognitive impairment is a core symptom in patients with the illness, and has been suggested a major predictor of functional outcomes. Reduction of parvalbumin (PV)-positive ?-aminobutyric acid (GABA) interneurons has been associated with the pathophysiology of schizophrenia, in view of the link between the abnormality of GABA neurons and cognitive impairments of the disease. It is assumed that an imbalance of exc...

  12. Neuroserpin and brain-derived neurotrophic factor in neuroendocrine and neuronal plasticity. Functional studies in (transgenic) Xenopus intermediate pituitary cells

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rotteveel-de Groot, D.M. de

    2007-01-01

    The molecular mechanisms underlying neuronal plasticity, i.e. the capacity of the brain to continuously adapt its structural organization to new situations, remain largely unknown. In this thesis, we explored functional aspects of two proteins that presumably play a role in neuronal plasticity,

  13. Developmental profiles of the intrinsic properties and synaptic function of auditory neurons in preterm and term baboon neonates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Sei Eun; Lee, Seul Yi; Blanco, Cynthia L; Kim, Jun Hee

    2014-08-20

    The human fetus starts to hear and undergoes major developmental changes in the auditory system during the third trimester of pregnancy. Although there are significant data regarding development of the auditory system in rodents, changes in intrinsic properties and synaptic function of auditory neurons in developing primate brain at hearing onset are poorly understood. We performed whole-cell patch-clamp recordings of principal neurons in the medial nucleus of trapezoid body (MNTB) in preterm and term baboon brainstem slices to study the structural and functional maturation of auditory synapses. Each MNTB principal neuron received an excitatory input from a single calyx of Held terminal, and this one-to-one pattern of innervation was already formed in preterm baboons delivered at 67% of normal gestation. There was no difference in frequency or amplitude of spontaneous excitatory postsynaptic synaptic currents between preterm and term MNTB neurons. In contrast, the frequency of spontaneous GABA(A)/glycine receptor-mediated inhibitory postsynaptic synaptic currents, which were prevalent in preterm MNTB neurons, was significantly reduced in term MNTB neurons. Preterm MNTB neurons had a higher input resistance than term neurons and fired in bursts, whereas term MNTB neurons fired a single action potential in response to suprathreshold current injection. The maturation of intrinsic properties and dominance of excitatory inputs in the primate MNTB allow it to take on its mature role as a fast and reliable relay synapse. Copyright © 2014 the authors 0270-6474/14/3411399-06$15.00/0.

  14. A single hidden layer feedforward network with only one neuron in the hidden layer can approximate any univariate function

    OpenAIRE

    Guliyev , Namig; Ismailov , Vugar

    2016-01-01

    The possibility of approximating a continuous function on a compact subset of the real line by a feedforward single hidden layer neural network with a sigmoidal activation function has been studied in many papers. Such networks can approximate an arbitrary continuous function provided that an unlimited number of neurons in a hidden layer is permitted. In this paper, we consider constructive approximation on any finite interval of $\\mathbb{R}$ by neural networks with only one neuron in the hid...

  15. 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

  16. Transcriptomics of aged Drosophila motor neurons reveals a matrix metalloproteinase that impairs motor function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Azpurua, Jorge; Mahoney, Rebekah E; Eaton, Benjamin A

    2018-04-01

    The neuromuscular junction (NMJ) is responsible for transforming nervous system signals into motor behavior and locomotion. In the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster, an age-dependent decline in motor function occurs, analogous to the decline experienced in mice, humans, and other mammals. The molecular and cellular underpinnings of this decline are still poorly understood. By specifically profiling the transcriptome of Drosophila motor neurons across age using custom microarrays, we found that the expression of the matrix metalloproteinase 1 (dMMP1) gene reproducibly increased in motor neurons in an age-dependent manner. Modulation of physiological aging also altered the rate of dMMP1 expression, validating dMMP1 expression as a bona fide aging biomarker for motor neurons. Temporally controlled overexpression of dMMP1 specifically in motor neurons was sufficient to induce deficits in climbing behavior and cause a decrease in neurotransmitter release at neuromuscular synapses. These deficits were reversible if the dMMP1 expression was shut off again immediately after the onset of motor dysfunction. Additionally, repression of dMMP1 enzymatic activity via overexpression of a tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases delayed the onset of age-dependent motor dysfunction. MMPs are required for proper tissue architecture during development. Our results support the idea that matrix metalloproteinase 1 is acting as a downstream effector of antagonistic pleiotropy in motor neurons and is necessary for proper development, but deleterious when reactivated at an advanced age. © 2018 The Authors. Aging Cell published by the Anatomical Society and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  18. Dysfunction in endoplasmic reticulum-mitochondria crosstalk underlies SIGMAR1 loss of function mediated motor neuron degeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernard-Marissal, Nathalie; Médard, Jean-Jacques; Azzedine, Hamid; Chrast, Roman

    2015-04-01

    Mutations in Sigma 1 receptor (SIGMAR1) have been previously identified in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and disruption of Sigmar1 in mouse leads to locomotor deficits. However, cellular mechanisms underlying motor phenotypes in human and mouse with disturbed SIGMAR1 function have not been described so far. Here we used a combination of in vivo and in vitro approaches to investigate the role of SIGMAR1 in motor neuron biology. Characterization of Sigmar1(-/-) mice revealed that affected animals display locomotor deficits associated with muscle weakness, axonal degeneration and motor neuron loss. Using primary motor neuron cultures, we observed that pharmacological or genetic inactivation of SIGMAR1 led to motor neuron axonal degeneration followed by cell death. Disruption of SIGMAR1 function in motor neurons disturbed endoplasmic reticulum-mitochondria contacts, affected intracellular calcium signalling and was accompanied by activation of endoplasmic reticulum stress and defects in mitochondrial dynamics and transport. These defects were not observed in cultured sensory neurons, highlighting the exacerbated sensitivity of motor neurons to SIGMAR1 function. Interestingly, the inhibition of mitochondrial fission was sufficient to induce mitochondria axonal transport defects as well as axonal degeneration similar to the changes observed after SIGMAR1 inactivation or loss. Intracellular calcium scavenging and endoplasmic reticulum stress inhibition were able to restore mitochondrial function and consequently prevent motor neuron degeneration. These results uncover the cellular mechanisms underlying motor neuron degeneration mediated by loss of SIGMAR1 function and provide therapeutically relevant insight into motor neuronal diseases. © The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  19. 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.

  20. Supraoptic oxytocin and vasopressin neurons function as glucose and metabolic sensors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Zhilin; Levin, Barry E; Stevens, Wanida; Sladek, Celia D

    2014-04-01

    Neurons in the supraoptic nuclei (SON) produce oxytocin and vasopressin and express insulin receptors (InsR) and glucokinase. Since oxytocin is an anorexigenic agent and glucokinase and InsR are hallmarks of cells that function as glucose and/or metabolic sensors, we evaluated the effect of glucose, insulin, and their downstream effector ATP-sensitive potassium (KATP) channels on calcium signaling in SON neurons and on oxytocin and vasopressin release from explants of the rat hypothalamo-neurohypophyseal system. We also evaluated the effect of blocking glucokinase and phosphatidylinositol 3 kinase (PI3K; mediates insulin-induced mobilization of glucose transporter, GLUT4) on responses to glucose and insulin. Glucose and insulin increased intracellular calcium ([Ca(2+)]i). The responses were glucokinase and PI3K dependent, respectively. Insulin and glucose alone increased vasopressin release (P glucose in the presence of insulin. The oxytocin (OT) and vasopressin (VP) responses to insulin+glucose were blocked by the glucokinase inhibitor alloxan (4 mM; P ≤ 0.002) and the PI3K inhibitor wortmannin (50 nM; OT: P = 0.03; VP: P ≤ 0.002). Inactivating K ATP channels with 200 nM glibenclamide increased oxytocin and vasopressin release (OT: P neurons functioning as glucose and "metabolic" sensors to participate in appetite regulation.

  1. 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.

  2. Non-Neuronal Functions of the M2 Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptor

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    Ritva Tikkanen

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Acetylcholine is an important neurotransmitter whose effects are mediated by two classes of receptors. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptors are ion channels, whereas the muscarinic receptors belong to the large family of G protein coupled seven transmembrane helix receptors. Beyond its function in neuronal systems, it has become evident that acetylcholine also plays an important role in non-neuronal cells such as epithelial and immune cells. Furthermore, many cell types in the periphery are capable of synthesizing acetylcholine and express at least some of the receptors. In this review, we summarize the non-neuronal functions of the muscarinic acetylcholine receptors, especially those of the M2 muscarinic receptor in epithelial cells. We will review the mechanisms of signaling by the M2 receptor but also the cellular trafficking and ARF6 mediated endocytosis of this receptor, which play an important role in the regulation of signaling events. In addition, we provide an overview of the M2 receptor in human pathological conditions such as autoimmune diseases and cancer.

  3. Lack of functional specialization of neurons in the mouse primary visual cortex that have expressed calretinin

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    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.

  4. Supraoptic oxytocin and vasopressin neurons function as glucose and metabolic sensors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, Zhilin; Levin, Barry E.; Stevens, Wanida

    2014-01-01

    Neurons in the supraoptic nuclei (SON) produce oxytocin and vasopressin and express insulin receptors (InsR) and glucokinase. Since oxytocin is an anorexigenic agent and glucokinase and InsR are hallmarks of cells that function as glucose and/or metabolic sensors, we evaluated the effect of glucose, insulin, and their downstream effector ATP-sensitive potassium (KATP) channels on calcium signaling in SON neurons and on oxytocin and vasopressin release from explants of the rat hypothalamo-neurohypophyseal system. We also evaluated the effect of blocking glucokinase and phosphatidylinositol 3 kinase (PI3K; mediates insulin-induced mobilization of glucose transporter, GLUT4) on responses to glucose and insulin. Glucose and insulin increased intracellular calcium ([Ca2+]i). The responses were glucokinase and PI3K dependent, respectively. Insulin and glucose alone increased vasopressin release (P glucose in the presence of insulin. The oxytocin (OT) and vasopressin (VP) responses to insulin+glucose were blocked by the glucokinase inhibitor alloxan (4 mM; P ≤ 0.002) and the PI3K inhibitor wortmannin (50 nM; OT: P = 0.03; VP: P ≤ 0.002). Inactivating KATP channels with 200 nM glibenclamide increased oxytocin and vasopressin release (OT: P neurons functioning as glucose and “metabolic” sensors to participate in appetite regulation. PMID:24477542

  5. Computer Modelling of Functional Aspects of Noise in Endogenously Oscillating Neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huber, M. T.; Dewald, M.; Voigt, K.; Braun, H. A.; Moss, F.

    1998-03-01

    Membrane potential oscillations are a widespread feature of neuronal activity. When such oscillations operate close to the spike-triggering threshold, noise can become an essential property of spike-generation. According to that, we developed a minimal Hodgkin-Huxley-type computer model which includes a noise term. This model accounts for experimental data from quite different cells ranging from mammalian cortical neurons to fish electroreceptors. With slight modifications of the parameters, the model's behavior can be tuned to bursting activity, which additionally allows it to mimick temperature encoding in peripheral cold receptors including transitions to apparently chaotic dynamics as indicated by methods for the detection of unstable periodic orbits. Under all conditions, cooperative effects between noise and nonlinear dynamics can be shown which, beyond stochastic resonance, might be of functional significance for stimulus encoding and neuromodulation.

  6. PIP2 mediates functional coupling and pharmacology of neuronal KCNQ channels

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kim, Robin Y; Pless, Stephan A; Kurata, Harley T

    2017-01-01

    Retigabine (RTG) is a first-in-class antiepileptic drug that suppresses neuronal excitability through the activation of voltage-gated KCNQ2-5 potassium channels. Retigabine binds to the pore-forming domain, causing a hyperpolarizing shift in the voltage dependence of channel activation. To elucid......Retigabine (RTG) is a first-in-class antiepileptic drug that suppresses neuronal excitability through the activation of voltage-gated KCNQ2-5 potassium channels. Retigabine binds to the pore-forming domain, causing a hyperpolarizing shift in the voltage dependence of channel activation....... These findings reveal an important role for PIP2 in coupling retigabine binding to altered VSD function. We identify a polybasic motif in the proximal C terminus of retigabine-sensitive KCNQ channels that contributes to VSD-pore coupling via PIP2, and thereby influences the unique gating effects of retigabine....

  7. Physiological basis and image processing in functional magnetic resonance imaging: Neuronal and motor activity in brain

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    Sharma Rakesh

    2004-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI is recently developing as imaging modality used for mapping hemodynamics of neuronal and motor event related tissue blood oxygen level dependence (BOLD in terms of brain activation. Image processing is performed by segmentation and registration methods. Segmentation algorithms provide brain surface-based analysis, automated anatomical labeling of cortical fields in magnetic resonance data sets based on oxygen metabolic state. Registration algorithms provide geometric features using two or more imaging modalities to assure clinically useful neuronal and motor information of brain activation. This review article summarizes the physiological basis of fMRI signal, its origin, contrast enhancement, physical factors, anatomical labeling by segmentation, registration approaches with examples of visual and motor activity in brain. Latest developments are reviewed for clinical applications of fMRI along with other different neurophysiological and imaging modalities.

  8. Current view on the functional regulation of the neuronal K+-Cl- cotransporter KCC2

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    Igor eMedina

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available In the mammalian central nervous system, the inhibitory strength of chloride (Cl--permeable GABAA and glycine receptors (GABAAR and GlyR depends on the intracellular Cl- concentration ([Cl-]i. Lowering [Cl-]i enhances inhibition, whereas raising [Cl-]i facilitates neuronal activity. A neuron’s basal level of [Cl-]i, as well as its Cl- extrusion capacity, is critically dependent on the activity of the electroneutral K+-Cl- cotransporter KCC2, a member of the SLC12 cation-Cl- cotransporter (CCC family. KCC2 deficiency compromises neuronal migration, formation and the maturation of GABAergic and glutamatergic synaptic connections, and results in network hyperexcitability and seizure activity. Several neurological disorders including multiple epilepsy subtypes, neuropathic pain, and schizophrenia, as well as various insults such as trauma and ischemia, are associated with significant decreases in the Cl- extrusion capacity of KCC2 that result in increases of [Cl-]i and the subsequent hyperexcitability of neuronal networks. Accordingly, identifying the key upstream molecular mediators governing the functional regulation of KCC2, and modifying these signalling pathways with small molecules, might constitute a novel neurotherapeutic strategy for multiple diseases. Here, we discuss recent advances in the understanding of the mechanisms regulating KCC2 activity, and of the role these mechanisms play in neuronal Cl- homeostasis and GABAergic neurotransmission. As KCC2 mediates electroneutral transport, the experimental recording of its activity constitutes an important research challenge; we therefore also, provide an overview of the different methodological approaches utilized to monitor function of KCC2 in both physiological and pathological conditions.

  9. Error-based analysis of optimal tuning functions explains phenomena observed in sensory neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steve Yaeli

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Biological systems display impressive capabilities in effectively responding to environmental signals in real time. There is increasing evidence that organisms may indeed be employing near optimal Bayesian calculations in their decision-making. An intriguing question relates to the properties of optimal encoding methods, namely determining the properties of neural populations in sensory layers that optimize performance, subject to physiological constraints. Within an ecological theory of neural encoding/decoding, we show that optimal Bayesian performance requires neural adaptation which reflects environmental changes. Specifically, we predict that neuronal tuning functions possess an optimal width, which increases with prior uncertainty and environmental noise, and decreases with the decoding time window. Furthermore, even for static stimuli, we demonstrate that dynamic sensory tuning functions, acting at relatively short time scales, lead to improved performance. Interestingly, the narrowing of tuning functions as a function of time was recently observed in several biological systems. Such results set the stage for a functional theory which may explain the high reliability of sensory systems, and the utility of neuronal adaptation occurring at multiple time scales.

  10. Error-based analysis of optimal tuning functions explains phenomena observed in sensory neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yaeli, Steve; Meir, Ron

    2010-01-01

    Biological systems display impressive capabilities in effectively responding to environmental signals in real time. There is increasing evidence that organisms may indeed be employing near optimal Bayesian calculations in their decision-making. An intriguing question relates to the properties of optimal encoding methods, namely determining the properties of neural populations in sensory layers that optimize performance, subject to physiological constraints. Within an ecological theory of neural encoding/decoding, we show that optimal Bayesian performance requires neural adaptation which reflects environmental changes. Specifically, we predict that neuronal tuning functions possess an optimal width, which increases with prior uncertainty and environmental noise, and decreases with the decoding time window. Furthermore, even for static stimuli, we demonstrate that dynamic sensory tuning functions, acting at relatively short time scales, lead to improved performance. Interestingly, the narrowing of tuning functions as a function of time was recently observed in several biological systems. Such results set the stage for a functional theory which may explain the high reliability of sensory systems, and the utility of neuronal adaptation occurring at multiple time scales.

  11. Combined small-molecule inhibition accelerates the derivation of functional, early-born, cortical neurons from human pluripotent stem cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qi, Yuchen; Zhang, Xin-Jun; Renier, Nicolas; Wu, Zhuhao; Atkin, Talia; Sun, Ziyi; Ozair, M. Zeeshan; Tchieu, Jason; Zimmer, Bastian; Fattahi, Faranak; Ganat, Yosif; Azevedo, Ricardo; Zeltner, Nadja; Brivanlou, Ali H.; Karayiorgou, Maria; Gogos, Joseph; Tomishima, Mark; Tessier-Lavigne, Marc; Shi, Song-Hai; Studer, Lorenz

    2017-01-01

    Considerable progress has been made in converting human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) into functional neurons. However, the protracted timing of human neuron specification and functional maturation remains a key challenge that hampers the routine application of hPSC-derived lineages in disease modeling and regenerative medicine. Using a combinatorial small-molecule screen, we previously identified conditions for the rapid differentiation of hPSCs into peripheral sensory neurons. Here we generalize the approach to central nervous system (CNS) fates by developing a small-molecule approach for accelerated induction of early-born cortical neurons. Combinatorial application of 6 pathway inhibitors induces post-mitotic cortical neurons with functional electrophysiological properties by day 16 of differentiation, in the absence of glial cell co-culture. The resulting neurons, transplanted at 8 days of differentiation into the postnatal mouse cortex, are functional and establish long-distance projections, as shown using iDISCO whole brain imaging. Accelerated differentiation into cortical neuron fates should facilitate hPSC-based strategies for disease modeling and cell therapy in CNS disorders. PMID:28112759

  12. Organization of Functional Long-Range Circuits Controlling the Activity of Serotonergic Neurons in the Dorsal Raphe Nucleus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Li; Liu, Ming-Zhe; Li, Qing; Deng, Juan; Mu, Di; Sun, Yan-Gang

    2017-03-21

    Serotonergic neurons play key roles in various biological processes. However, circuit mechanisms underlying tight control of serotonergic neurons remain largely unknown. Here, we systematically investigated the organization of long-range synaptic inputs to serotonergic neurons and GABAergic neurons in the dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN) of mice with a combination of viral tracing, slice electrophysiological, and optogenetic techniques. We found that DRN serotonergic neurons and GABAergic neurons receive largely comparable synaptic inputs from six major upstream brain areas. Upon further analysis of the fine functional circuit structures, we found both bilateral and ipsilateral patterns of topographic connectivity in the DRN for the axons from different inputs. Moreover, the upstream brain areas were found to bidirectionally control the activity of DRN serotonergic neurons by recruiting feedforward inhibition or via a push-pull mechanism. Our study provides a framework for further deciphering the functional roles of long-range circuits controlling the activity of serotonergic neurons in the DRN. Copyright © 2017 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Reduced sensory synaptic excitation impairs motor neuron function via Kv2.1 in spinal muscular atrophy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fletcher, Emily V; Simon, Christian M; Pagiazitis, John G; Chalif, Joshua I; Vukojicic, Aleksandra; Drobac, Estelle; Wang, Xiaojian; Mentis, George Z

    2017-07-01

    Behavioral deficits in neurodegenerative diseases are often attributed to the selective dysfunction of vulnerable neurons via cell-autonomous mechanisms. Although vulnerable neurons are embedded in neuronal circuits, the contributions of their synaptic partners to disease process are largely unknown. Here we show that, in a mouse model of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), a reduction in proprioceptive synaptic drive leads to motor neuron dysfunction and motor behavior impairments. In SMA mice or after the blockade of proprioceptive synaptic transmission, we observed a decrease in the motor neuron firing that could be explained by the reduction in the expression of the potassium channel Kv2.1 at the surface of motor neurons. Chronically increasing neuronal activity pharmacologically in vivo led to a normalization of Kv2.1 expression and an improvement in motor function. Our results demonstrate a key role of excitatory synaptic drive in shaping the function of motor neurons during development and the contribution of its disruption to a neurodegenerative disease.

  14. Comprehensive analysis of alternative splicing and functionality in neuronal differentiation of P19 cells.

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    Hitoshi Suzuki

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Alternative splicing, which produces multiple mRNAs from a single gene, occurs in most human genes and contributes to protein diversity. Many alternative isoforms are expressed in a spatio-temporal manner, and function in diverse processes, including in the neural system. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The purpose of the present study was to comprehensively investigate neural-splicing using P19 cells. GeneChip Exon Array analysis was performed using total RNAs purified from cells during neuronal cell differentiation. To efficiently and readily extract the alternative exon candidates, 9 filtering conditions were prepared, yielding 262 candidate exons (236 genes. Semiquantitative RT-PCR results in 30 randomly selected candidates suggested that 87% of the candidates were differentially alternatively spliced in neuronal cells compared to undifferentiated cells. Gene ontology and pathway analyses suggested that many of the candidate genes were associated with neural events. Together with 66 genes whose functions in neural cells or organs were reported previously, 47 candidate genes were found to be linked to 189 events in the gene-level profile of neural differentiation. By text-mining for the alternative isoform, distinct functions of the isoforms of 9 candidate genes indicated by the result of Exon Array were confirmed. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Alternative exons were successfully extracted. Results from the informatics analyses suggested that neural events were primarily governed by genes whose expression was increased and whose transcripts were differentially alternatively spliced in the neuronal cells. In addition to known functions in neural cells or organs, the uninvestigated alternative splicing events of 11 genes among 47 candidate genes suggested that cell cycle events are also potentially important. These genes may help researchers to differentiate the roles of alternative splicing in cell differentiation and cell

  15. Functional significance of O-GlcNAc modification in regulating neuronal properties.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hwang, Hongik; Rhim, Hyewhon

    2018-03-01

    Post-translational modifications (PTMs) covalently modify proteins and diversify protein functions. Along with protein phosphorylation, another common PTM is the addition of O-linked β-N-acetylglucosamine (O-GlcNAc) to serine and/or threonine residues. O-GlcNAc modification is similar to phosphorylation in that it occurs to serine and threonine residues and cycles on and off with a similar time scale. However, a striking difference is that the addition and removal of the O-GlcNAc moiety on all substrates are mediated by the two enzymes regardless of proteins, O-GlcNAc transferase (OGT) and O-GlcNAcase (OGA), respectively. O-GlcNAcylation can interact or potentially compete with phosphorylation on serine and threonine residues, and thus serves as an important molecular mechanism to modulate protein functions and activation. However, it has been challenging to address the role of O-GlcNAc modification in regulating protein functions at the molecular level due to the lack of convenient tools to determine the sites and degrees of O-GlcNAcylation. Studies in this field have only begun to expand significantly thanks to the recent advances in detection and manipulation methods such as quantitative proteomics and highly selective small-molecule inhibitors for OGT and OGA. Interestingly, multiple brain regions, especially hippocampus, express high levels of both OGT and OGA, and a number of neuron-specific proteins have been reported to undergo O-GlcNAcylation. This review aims to discuss the recent updates concerning the impacts of O-GlcNAc modification on neuronal functions at multiple levels ranging from intrinsic neuronal properties to synaptic plasticity and animal behaviors. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Functional Maturation of Human Stem Cell-Derived Neurons in Long-Term Cultures.

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    Rebecca S Lam

    Full Text Available Differentiated neurons can be rapidly acquired, within days, by inducing stem cells to express neurogenic transcription factors. We developed a protocol to maintain long-term cultures of human neurons, called iNGNs, which are obtained by inducing Neurogenin-1 and Neurogenin-2 expression in induced pluripotent stem cells. We followed the functional development of iNGNs over months and they showed many hallmark properties for neuronal maturation, including robust electrical and synaptic activity. Using iNGNs expressing a variant of channelrhodopsin-2, called CatCh, we could control iNGN activity with blue light stimulation. In combination with optogenetic tools, iNGNs offer opportunities for studies that require precise spatial and temporal resolution. iNGNs developed spontaneous network activity, and these networks had excitatory glutamatergic synapses, which we characterized with single-cell synaptic recordings. AMPA glutamatergic receptor activity was especially dominant in postsynaptic recordings, whereas NMDA glutamatergic receptor activity was absent from postsynaptic recordings but present in extrasynaptic recordings. Our results on long-term cultures of iNGNs could help in future studies elucidating mechanisms of human synaptogenesis and neurotransmission, along with the ability to scale-up the size of the cultures.

  17. Parallel changes in cortical neuron biochemistry and motor function in protein-energy malnourished adult rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alaverdashvili, Mariam; Hackett, Mark J; Caine, Sally; Paterson, Phyllis G

    2017-04-01

    While protein-energy malnutrition in the adult has been reported to induce motor abnormalities and exaggerate motor deficits caused by stroke, it is not known if alterations in mature cortical neurons contribute to the functional deficits. Therefore, we explored if PEM in adult rats provoked changes in the biochemical profile of neurons in the forelimb and hindlimb regions of the motor cortex. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopic imaging using a synchrotron generated light source revealed for the first time altered lipid composition in neurons and subcellular domains (cytosol and nuclei) in a cortical layer and region-specific manner. This change measured by the area under the curve of the δ(CH 2 ) band may indicate modifications in membrane fluidity. These PEM-induced biochemical changes were associated with the development of abnormalities in forelimb use and posture. The findings of this study provide a mechanism by which PEM, if not treated, could exacerbate the course of various neurological disorders and diminish treatment efficacy. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Functional integration of grafted neural stem cell-derived dopaminergic neurons monitored by optogenetics in an in vitro Parkinson model

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tønnesen, Jan; Parish, Clare L; Sørensen, Andreas T

    2011-01-01

    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...... 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...... 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...

  19. Distribution and function of HCN channels in the apical dendritic tuft of neocortical pyramidal neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harnett, Mark T; Magee, Jeffrey C; Williams, Stephen R

    2015-01-21

    The apical tuft is the most remote area of the dendritic tree of neocortical pyramidal neurons. Despite its distal location, the apical dendritic tuft of layer 5 pyramidal neurons receives substantial excitatory synaptic drive and actively processes corticocortical input during behavior. The properties of the voltage-activated ion channels that regulate synaptic integration in tuft dendrites have, however, not been thoroughly investigated. Here, we use electrophysiological and optical approaches to examine the subcellular distribution and function of hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated nonselective cation (HCN) channels in rat layer 5B pyramidal neurons. Outside-out patch recordings demonstrated that the amplitude and properties of ensemble HCN channel activity were uniform in patches excised from distal apical dendritic trunk and tuft sites. Simultaneous apical dendritic tuft and trunk whole-cell current-clamp recordings revealed that the pharmacological blockade of HCN channels decreased voltage compartmentalization and enhanced the generation and spread of apical dendritic tuft and trunk regenerative activity. Furthermore, multisite two-photon glutamate uncaging demonstrated that HCN channels control the amplitude and duration of synaptically evoked regenerative activity in the distal apical dendritic tuft. In contrast, at proximal apical dendritic trunk and somatic recording sites, the blockade of HCN channels decreased excitability. Dynamic-clamp experiments revealed that these compartment-specific actions of HCN channels were heavily influenced by the local and distributed impact of the high density of HCN channels in the distal apical dendritic arbor. The properties and subcellular distribution pattern of HCN channels are therefore tuned to regulate the interaction between integration compartments in layer 5B pyramidal neurons. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/351024-14$15.00/0.

  20. 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.

  1. The zinc finger E-box-binding homeobox 1 (Zeb1) promotes the conversion of mouse fibroblasts into functional neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Long; Li, Yue; Shi, Zixiao; Lu, Xiaoyin; Ma, Jiao; Hu, Baoyang; Jiao, Jianwei; Wang, Hongmei

    2017-08-04

    The zinc finger E-box-binding transcription factor Zeb1 plays a pivotal role in the epithelial-mesenchymal transition. Numerous studies have focused on the molecular mechanisms by which Zeb1 contributes to this process. However, the functions of Zeb1 beyond the epithelial-mesenchymal transition remain largely elusive. Using a transdifferentiation system to convert mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs) into functional neurons via the neuronal transcription factors achaete-scute family bHLH (basic helix-loop-helix) transcription factor1 ( Ascl1 ), POU class 3 homeobox 2 (POU3F2/ Brn2 ), and neurogenin 2 (Neurog2, Ngn2 ) (ABN), we found that Zeb1 was up-regulated during the early stages of transdifferentiation. Knocking down Zeb1 dramatically attenuated the transdifferentiation efficiency, whereas Zeb1 overexpression obviously increased the efficiency of transdifferentiation from MEFs to neurons. Interestingly, Zeb1 improved the transdifferentiation efficiency induced by even a single transcription factor ( e.g. Asc1 or Ngn2 ). Zeb1 also rapidly promoted the maturation of induced neuron cells to functional neurons and improved the formation of neuronal patterns and electrophysiological characteristics. Induced neuron cells could form functional synapse in vivo after transplantation. Genome-wide RNA arrays showed that Zeb1 overexpression up-regulated the expression of neuron-specific genes and down-regulated the expression of epithelial-specific genes during conversion. Taken together, our results reveal a new role for Zeb1 in the transdifferentiation of MEFs into neurons. © 2017 by The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.

  2. 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

  3. TRPA1 Is Functionally Expressed Primarily by IB4-Binding, Non-Peptidergic Mouse and Rat Sensory Neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stucky, Cheryl L.

    2012-01-01

    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 (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 functionally expressed

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caffrey, James R; Hughes, Barry D; Britto, Joanne M; Landman, Kerry A

    2014-01-01

    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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  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. The Gemin associates of survival motor neuron are required for motor function in Drosophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borg, Rebecca; Cauchi, Ruben J

    2013-01-01

    Membership of the survival motor neuron (SMN) complex extends to nine factors, including the SMN protein, the product of the spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) disease gene, Gemins 2-8 and Unrip. The best-characterised function of this macromolecular machine is the assembly of the Sm-class of uridine-rich small nuclear ribonucleoprotein (snRNP) particles and each SMN complex member has a key role during this process. So far, however, only little is known about the function of the individual Gemin components in vivo. Here, we make use of the Drosophila model organism to uncover loss-of-function phenotypes of Gemin2, Gemin3 and Gemin5, which together with SMN form the minimalistic fly SMN complex. We show that ectopic overexpression of the dead helicase Gem3(ΔN) mutant or knockdown of Gemin3 result in similar motor phenotypes, when restricted to muscle, and in combination cause lethality, hence suggesting that Gem3(ΔN) overexpression mimics a loss-of-function. Based on the localisation pattern of Gem3(ΔN), we predict that the nucleus is the primary site of the antimorphic or dominant-negative mechanism of Gem3(ΔN)-mediated interference. Interestingly, phenotypes induced by human SMN overexpression in Drosophila exhibit similarities to those induced by overexpression of Gem3(ΔN). Through enhanced knockdown we also uncover a requirement of Gemin2, Gemin3 and Gemin5 for viability and motor behaviour, including locomotion as well as flight, in muscle. Notably, in the case of Gemin3 and Gemin5, such function also depends on adequate levels of the respective protein in neurons. Overall, these findings lead us to speculate that absence of any one member is sufficient to arrest the SMN-Gemins complex function in a nucleocentric pathway, which is critical for motor function in vivo.

  9. 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.

  10. Functional expression of the 5-HT1c receptor in neuronal and nonneuronal cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Julius, D.; MacDermott, A.B.; Jessel, T.M.; Huang, K.; Molineaux, S.; Schieren, I.; Axel, R.

    1988-01-01

    The isolation of the genes encoding the multiple serotonin receptor subtypes and the ability to express these receptors in new cellular environments will help to elucidate the molecular mechanisms of action of serotonin in the mammalian brain. The cloning of most neurotransmitter receptors has required the purification of receptor, the determination of partial protein sequence, and the synthesis of oligonucleotide probes with which to obtain cDNA or genomic clones. However, the serotonin receptors have not been purified and antibodies have not been generated. The authors therefore designed a cDNA expression system that permits the identification of functional cDNA clones encoding serotonin receptors in the absence of protein sequence information. They have combined cloning in RNA expression vectors with an electrophysiological assay in oocytes to isolate a functional cDNA clone encoding the entire 5-HT 1c receptor. The sequence of this clone reveals that the 5-HT 1c receptor belongs to a family of G-protein-coupled receptors that are thought to traverse the membrane seven times. Mouse fibroblasts transformed with this clone bind serotonergic ligands and respond to serotonin with an elevation in intracellular calcium. Moreover, in situ hybridization and Northern blot analysis indicate that the 5-HT 1c receptor mRNA is expressed in a wide variety of neurons in the rat central nervous system, suggesting that this receptor plays a prominent role in neuronal function

  11. Direct lineage reprogramming of mouse fibroblasts to functional midbrain dopaminergic neuronal progenitors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  12. Distinct functional and temporal requirements for zebrafish Hdac1 during neural crest-derived craniofacial and peripheral neuron development.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ignatius, Myron S; Unal Eroglu, Arife; Malireddy, Smitha; Gallagher, Glen; Nambiar, Roopa M; Henion, Paul D

    2013-01-01

    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.

  13. Discontinuous Galerkin finite element method for solving population density functions of cortical pyramidal and thalamic neuronal populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Distinct functional and temporal requirements for zebrafish Hdac1 during neural crest-derived craniofacial and peripheral neuron development.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  15. Functional characterization of GABAA receptor-mediated modulation of cortical neuron network activity in microelectrode array recordings

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bader, Benjamin M; Steder, Anne; Klein, Anders Bue

    2017-01-01

    The numerous γ-aminobutyric acid type A receptor (GABAAR) subtypes are differentially expressed and mediate distinct functions at neuronal level. In this study we have investigated GABAAR-mediated modulation of the spontaneous activity patterns of primary neuronal networks from murine frontal...... of the information extractable from the MEA recordings offers interesting insights into the contributions of various GABAAR subtypes/subgroups to cortical network activity and the putative functional interplay between these receptors in these neurons....... cortex by characterizing the effects induced by a wide selection of pharmacological tools at a plethora of activity parameters in microelectrode array (MEA) recordings. The basic characteristics of the primary cortical neurons used in the recordings were studied in some detail, and the expression levels...

  16. [RECONSTRUCTION OF LOWER EXTREMITY FUNCTION OF COMPLETE SPINAL CORD INJURY RATS BY FIRST NEURON CONNECTION].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Fangyong; Yuan, Yuan; Li, Jianjun

    2015-12-01

    To investigate the effects of the first neuron connection for the reconstruction of lower extremity function of complete spinal cord injury rats. Forty adult female Sprague Dawley rats of 300-350 g in weight were selected to prepare the models of L₁ transverse spinal cord injury. After 2 weeks of establishing model, the rats were randomly divided into control group (n = 20) and experimental group (n = 20). In the experimental group, the right hind limb function was reconstructed directly by the first neuron; in the control group, the other treatments were the same to the experimental group except that the distal tibial nerve and the proximal femoral nerve were not sutured. The recovery of motor function of lower extremity was observed by the Basso-Beattie-Bresnahan (BBB) scoring system on bilateral hind limbs at 7, 30, 50, and 70 days after operation. The changes of the spinal cord were observed by HE staining, neurofilament 200 immunohistochemistry staining, and the technique of horseradish peroxidase (HRP) tracing. After establishing models, 6 rats died. The right hind limb had no obvious recovery of the motor function, with the BBB score of 0 in 2 groups; the left hind limb motor function was recovered in different degrees, and there was no significant difference in BBB score between 2 groups (P > 0.05). In the experimental group, HE staining showed that the spinal cord was reconstructed with the sciatic nerve, which was embedded in the spinal cord, and the sciatic nerve membrane was clearly identified, and there was no obvious atrophy in the connecting part of the spinal cord. In the experimental group, the expression of nerve fiber was stained with immunohistochemistry, and the axons of the spinal cord were positively by stained and the peripheral nerve was connected with the spinal cord. HRP labelled synapses were detected by HRP retrograde tracing in the experimental group, while there was no HRP labelled synapse in the control group. Direct reconstruction

  17. A new photosensory function for simple photoreceptors, the intrinsically photoresponsive neurons of the sea slug Onchidium

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  18. Functional neuromuscular junctions formed by embryonic stem cell-derived motor neurons.

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    Joy A Umbach

    Full Text Available A key objective of stem cell biology is to create physiologically relevant cells suitable for modeling disease pathologies in vitro. Much progress towards this goal has been made in the area of motor neuron (MN disease through the development of methods to direct spinal MN formation from both embryonic and induced pluripotent stem cells. Previous studies have characterized these neurons with respect to their molecular and intrinsic functional properties. However, the synaptic activity of stem cell-derived MNs remains less well defined. In this study, we report the development of low-density co-culture conditions that encourage the formation of active neuromuscular synapses between stem cell-derived MNs and muscle cells in vitro. Fluorescence microscopy reveals the expression of numerous synaptic proteins at these contacts, while dual patch clamp recording detects both spontaneous and multi-quantal evoked synaptic responses similar to those observed in vivo. Together, these findings demonstrate that stem cell-derived MNs innervate muscle cells in a functionally relevant manner. This dual recording approach further offers a sensitive and quantitative assay platform to probe disorders of synaptic dysfunction associated with MN disease.

  19. Functional crosstalk in culture between macrophages and trigeminal sensory neurons of a mouse genetic model of migraine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Franceschini Alessia

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Enhanced activity of trigeminal ganglion neurons is thought to underlie neuronal sensitization facilitating the onset of chronic pain attacks, including migraine. Recurrent headache attacks might establish a chronic neuroinflammatory ganglion profile contributing to the hypersensitive phenotype. Since it is difficult to study this process in vivo, we investigated functional crosstalk between macrophages and sensory neurons in primary cultures from trigeminal sensory ganglia of wild-type (WT or knock-in (KI mice expressing the Cacna1a gene mutation (R192Q found in familial hemiplegic migraine-type 1. After studying the number and morphology of resident macrophages in culture, the consequences of adding host macrophages on macrophage phagocytosis and membrane currents mediated by pain-transducing P2X3 receptors on sensory neurons were examined. Results KI ganglion cultures constitutively contained a larger number of active macrophages, although no difference in P2X3 receptor expression was found. Co-culturing WT or KI ganglia with host macrophages (active as much as resident cells strongly stimulated single cell phagocytosis. The same protocol had no effect on P2X3 receptor expression in WT or KI co-cultures, but it largely enhanced WT neuron currents that grew to the high amplitude constitutively seen for KI neurons. No further potentiation of KI neuronal currents was observed. Conclusions Trigeminal ganglion cultures from a genetic mouse model of migraine showed basal macrophage activation together with enhanced neuronal currents mediated by P2X3 receptors. This phenotype could be replicated in WT cultures by adding host macrophages, indicating an important functional crosstalk between macrophages and sensory neurons.

  20. Functional crosstalk in culture between macrophages and trigeminal sensory neurons of a mouse genetic model of migraine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franceschini, Alessia; Nair, Asha; Bele, Tanja; van den Maagdenberg, Arn Mjm; Nistri, Andrea; Fabbretti, Elsa

    2012-11-21

    Enhanced activity of trigeminal ganglion neurons is thought to underlie neuronal sensitization facilitating the onset of chronic pain attacks, including migraine. Recurrent headache attacks might establish a chronic neuroinflammatory ganglion profile contributing to the hypersensitive phenotype. Since it is difficult to study this process in vivo, we investigated functional crosstalk between macrophages and sensory neurons in primary cultures from trigeminal sensory ganglia of wild-type (WT) or knock-in (KI) mice expressing the Cacna1a gene mutation (R192Q) found in familial hemiplegic migraine-type 1. After studying the number and morphology of resident macrophages in culture, the consequences of adding host macrophages on macrophage phagocytosis and membrane currents mediated by pain-transducing P2X3 receptors on sensory neurons were examined. KI ganglion cultures constitutively contained a larger number of active macrophages, although no difference in P2X3 receptor expression was found. Co-culturing WT or KI ganglia with host macrophages (active as much as resident cells) strongly stimulated single cell phagocytosis. The same protocol had no effect on P2X3 receptor expression in WT or KI co-cultures, but it largely enhanced WT neuron currents that grew to the high amplitude constitutively seen for KI neurons. No further potentiation of KI neuronal currents was observed. Trigeminal ganglion cultures from a genetic mouse model of migraine showed basal macrophage activation together with enhanced neuronal currents mediated by P2X3 receptors. This phenotype could be replicated in WT cultures by adding host macrophages, indicating an important functional crosstalk between macrophages and sensory neurons.

  1. Neuron-specific caveolin-1 overexpression improves motor function and preserves memory in mice subjected to brain trauma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Egawa, Junji; Schilling, Jan M; Cui, Weihua; Posadas, Edmund; Sawada, Atsushi; Alas, Basheer; Zemljic-Harpf, Alice E; Fannon-Pavlich, McKenzie J; Mandyam, Chitra D; Roth, David M; Patel, Hemal H; Patel, Piyush M; Head, Brian P

    2017-08-01

    Studies in vitro and in vivo demonstrate that membrane/lipid rafts and caveolin (Cav) organize progrowth receptors, and, when overexpressed specifically in neurons, Cav-1 augments neuronal signaling and growth and improves cognitive function in adult and aged mice; however, whether neuronal Cav-1 overexpression can preserve motor and cognitive function in the brain trauma setting is unknown. Here, we generated a neuron-targeted Cav-1-overexpressing transgenic (Tg) mouse [synapsin-driven Cav-1 (SynCav1 Tg)] and subjected it to a controlled cortical impact model of brain trauma and measured biochemical, anatomic, and behavioral changes. SynCav1 Tg mice exhibited increased hippocampal expression of Cav-1 and membrane/lipid raft localization of postsynaptic density protein 95, NMDA receptor, and tropomyosin receptor kinase B. When subjected to a controlled cortical impact, SynCav1 Tg mice demonstrated preserved hippocampus-dependent fear learning and memory, improved motor function recovery, and decreased brain lesion volume compared with wild-type controls. Neuron-targeted overexpression of Cav-1 in the adult brain prevents hippocampus-dependent learning and memory deficits, restores motor function after brain trauma, and decreases brain lesion size induced by trauma. Our findings demonstrate that neuron-targeted Cav-1 can be used as a novel therapeutic strategy to restore brain function and prevent trauma-associated maladaptive plasticity.-Egawa, J., Schilling, J. M., Cui, W., Posadas, E., Sawada, A., Alas, B., Zemljic-Harpf, A. E., Fannon-Pavlich, M. J., Mandyam, C. D., Roth, D. M., Patel, H. H., Patel, P. M., Head, B. P. Neuron-specific caveolin-1 overexpression improves motor function and preserves memory in mice subjected to brain trauma. © FASEB.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Toxic gain of function from mutant FUS protein is crucial to trigger cell autonomous motor neuron loss.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scekic-Zahirovic, Jelena; Sendscheid, Oliver; El Oussini, Hajer; Jambeau, Mélanie; Sun, Ying; Mersmann, Sina; Wagner, Marina; Dieterlé, Stéphane; Sinniger, Jérome; Dirrig-Grosch, Sylvie; Drenner, Kevin; Birling, Marie-Christine; Qiu, Jinsong; Zhou, Yu; Li, Hairi; Fu, Xiang-Dong; Rouaux, Caroline; Shelkovnikova, Tatyana; Witting, Anke; Ludolph, Albert C; Kiefer, Friedemann; Storkebaum, Erik; Lagier-Tourenne, Clotilde; Dupuis, Luc

    2016-05-17

    FUS is an RNA-binding protein involved in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and frontotemporal dementia (FTD). Cytoplasmic FUS-containing aggregates are often associated with concomitant loss of nuclear FUS Whether loss of nuclear FUS function, gain of a cytoplasmic function, or a combination of both lead to neurodegeneration remains elusive. To address this question, we generated knockin mice expressing mislocalized cytoplasmic FUS and complete FUS knockout mice. Both mouse models display similar perinatal lethality with respiratory insufficiency, reduced body weight and length, and largely similar alterations in gene expression and mRNA splicing patterns, indicating that mislocalized FUS results in loss of its normal function. However, FUS knockin mice, but not FUS knockout mice, display reduced motor neuron numbers at birth, associated with enhanced motor neuron apoptosis, which can be rescued by cell-specific CRE-mediated expression of wild-type FUS within motor neurons. Together, our findings indicate that cytoplasmic FUS mislocalization not only leads to nuclear loss of function, but also triggers motor neuron death through a toxic gain of function within motor neurons. © 2016 The Authors. Published under the terms of the CC BY NC ND 4.0 license.

  5. 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.

  6. Divergent functions of the proneural genes Mash1 and Ngn2 in the specification of neuronal subtype identity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parras, Carlos M.; Schuurmans, Carol; Scardigli, Raffaella; Kim, Jaesang; Anderson, David J.; Guillemot, François

    2002-01-01

    The neural bHLH genes Mash1 and Ngn2 are expressed in complementary populations of neural progenitors in the central and peripheral nervous systems. Here, we have systematically compared the activities of the two genes during neural development by generating replacement mutations in mice in which the coding sequences of Mash1 and Ngn2 were swapped. Using this approach, we demonstrate that Mash1 has the capacity to respecify the identity of neuronal populations normally derived from Ngn2-expressing progenitors in the dorsal telencephalon and ventral spinal cord. In contrast, misexpression of Ngn2 in Mash1-expressing progenitors does not result in any overt change in neuronal phenotype. Taken together, these results demonstrate that Mash1 and Ngn2 have divergent functions in specification of neuronal subtype identity, with Mash1 having the characteristics of an instructive determinant whereas Ngn2 functions as a permissive factor that must act in combination with other factors to specify neuronal phenotypes. Moreover, the ectopic expression of Ngn2 can rescue the neurogenesis defects of Mash1 null mutants in the ventral telencephalon and sympathetic ganglia but not in the ventral spinal cord and the locus coeruleus, indicating that Mash1 contribution to the specification of neuronal fates varies greatly in different lineages, presumably depending on the presence of other determinants of neuronal identity. PMID:11825874

  7. 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.

  8. Inhibition of autophagy with bafilomycin and chloroquine decreases mitochondrial quality and bioenergetic function in primary neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew Redmann

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Autophagy is an important cell recycling program responsible for the clearance of damaged or long-lived proteins and organelles. Pharmacological modulators of this pathway have been extensively utilized in a wide range of basic research and pre-clinical studies. Bafilomycin A1 and chloroquine are commonly used compounds that inhibit autophagy by targeting the lysosomes but through distinct mechanisms. Since it is now clear that mitochondrial quality control, particularly in neurons, is dependent on autophagy, it is important to determine whether these compounds modify cellular bioenergetics. To address this, we cultured primary rat cortical neurons from E18 embryos and used the Seahorse XF96 analyzer and a targeted metabolomics approach to measure the effects of bafilomycin A1 and chloroquine on bioenergetics and metabolism. We found that both bafilomycin and chloroquine could significantly increase the autophagosome marker LC3-II and inhibit key parameters of mitochondrial function, and increase mtDNA damage. Furthermore, we observed significant alterations in TCA cycle intermediates, particularly those downstream of citrate synthase and those linked to glutaminolysis. Taken together, these data demonstrate a significant impact of bafilomycin and chloroquine on cellular bioenergetics and metabolism consistent with decreased mitochondrial quality associated with inhibition of autophagy.

  9. Variability of Neuronal Responses: Types and Functional Significance in Neuroplasticity and Neural Darwinism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chervyakov, Alexander V; Sinitsyn, Dmitry O; Piradov, Michael A

    2016-01-01

    HIGHLIGHTS We suggest classifying variability of neuronal responses as follows: false (associated with a lack of knowledge about the influential factors), "genuine harmful" (noise), "genuine neutral" (synonyms, repeats), and "genuine useful" (the basis of neuroplasticity and learning).The genuine neutral variability is considered in terms of the phenomenon of degeneracy.Of particular importance is the genuine useful variability that is considered as a potential basis for neuroplasticity and learning. This type of variability is considered in terms of the neural Darwinism theory. 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.

  10. Molecular and functional differences in voltage-activated sodium currents between GABA projection neurons and dopamine neurons in the substantia nigra

    OpenAIRE

    Ding, Shengyuan; Wei, Wei; Zhou, Fu-Ming

    2011-01-01

    GABA projection neurons (GABA neurons) in the substantia nigra pars reticulata (SNr) and dopamine projection neurons (DA neurons) in substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc) have strikingly different firing properties. SNc DA neurons fire low-frequency, long-duration spikes, whereas SNr GABA neurons fire high-frequency, short-duration spikes. Since voltage-activated sodium (NaV) channels are critical to spike generation, the different firing properties raise the possibility that, compared with DA...

  11. Recovery of function, peripheral sensitization and sensory neurone activation by novel pathways following axonal injury in Aplysia californica.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dulin, M F; Steffensen, I; Morris, C E; Walters, E T

    1995-10-01

    Recovery of behavioural and sensory function was examined following unilateral pedal nerve crush in Aplysia californica. Nerve crush that transected all axons connecting the tail to the central nervous system (CNS) eliminated the ipsilateral tail-evoked siphon reflex, whose sensory input travels in the crushed tail nerve (p9). The first reliable signs of recovery of this reflex were observed within 1 week, and most animals displayed tail-evoked siphon responses within 2 weeks. Wide-dynamic-range mechanosensory neurons with somata in the ventrocaudal (VC) cluster of the ipsilateral pleural ganglion exhibited a few receptive fields (RFs) on the tail 3 weeks after unilateral pedal nerve crush, indicating that the RFs had either regenerated or been reconnected to the central somata. These RFs were smaller and sensitized compared with corresponding RFs on the contralateral, uncrushed side. Centrally conducted axon responses of VC sensory neurones to electrical stimulation distal to the nerve crush site did not reappear until at least 10 days after the crush. Because the crush site was much closer to the CNS than to the tail, the failure of axon responses to be restored earlier than the behavioural responses indicates that early stages of reflex recovery are not due to regeneration of VC sensory neurone axons into the tail. Following nerve crush, VC sensory neurones often could be activated by stimulating central connectives or peripheral nerves that do not normally contain the sensory neurone's axons. These results suggest that recovery of behavioral function after nerve injury involves complex mechanisms, including regenerative growth of axotomized VC sensory neurones, sensitization of regenerating RFs and sprouting of VC sensory neurone fibres within the CNS. Furthermore, the rapidity of behavioural recovery indicates that its initial phases are mediated by additional mechanisms, perhaps centripetal regeneration of unidentified sensory neurones having peripheral

  12. Genetic reduction of mitochondrial complex I function does not lead to loss of dopamine neurons in vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Hyung-Wook; Choi, Won-Seok; Sorscher, Noah; Park, Hyung Joon; Tronche, François; Palmiter, Richard D; Xia, Zhengui

    2015-09-01

    Inhibition of mitochondrial complex I activity is hypothesized to be one of the major mechanisms responsible for dopaminergic neuron death in Parkinson's disease. However, loss of complex I activity by systemic deletion of the Ndufs4 gene, one of the subunits comprising complex I, does not cause dopaminergic neuron death in culture. Here, we generated mice with conditional Ndufs4 knockout in dopaminergic neurons (Ndufs4 conditional knockout mice [cKO]) to examine the effect of complex I inhibition on dopaminergic neuron function and survival during aging and on 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) treatment in vivo. Ndufs4 cKO mice did not show enhanced dopaminergic neuron loss in the substantia nigra pars compacta or dopamine-dependent motor deficits over the 24-month life span. These mice were just as susceptible to MPTP as control mice. However, compared with control mice, Ndufs4 cKO mice exhibited an age-dependent reduction of dopamine in the striatum and increased α-synuclein phosphorylation in dopaminergic neurons of the substantia nigra pars compacta. We also used an inducible Ndufs4 knockout mouse strain (Ndufs4 inducible knockout) in which Ndufs4 is conditionally deleted in all cells in adult to examine the effect of adult onset, complex I inhibition on MPTP sensitivity of dopaminergic neurons. The Ndufs4 inducible knockout mice exhibited similar sensitivity to MPTP as control littermates. These data suggest that mitochondrial complex I inhibition in dopaminergic neurons does contribute to dopamine loss and the development of α-synuclein pathology. However, it is not sufficient to cause cell-autonomous dopaminergic neuron death during the normal life span of mice. Furthermore, mitochondrial complex I inhibition does not underlie MPTP toxicity in vivo in either cell autonomous or nonautonomous manner. These results provide strong evidence that inhibition of mitochondrial complex I activity is not sufficient to cause dopaminergic neuron

  13. 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.

  14. Structural and functional properties of a probabilistic model of neuronal connectivity in a simple locomotor network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merrison-Hort, Robert; Soffe, Stephen R; Borisyuk, Roman

    2018-01-01

    Although, in most animals, brain connectivity varies between individuals, behaviour is often similar across a species. What fundamental structural properties are shared across individual networks that define this behaviour? We describe a probabilistic model of connectivity in the hatchling Xenopus tadpole spinal cord which, when combined with a spiking model, reliably produces rhythmic activity corresponding to swimming. The probabilistic model allows calculation of structural characteristics that reflect common network properties, independent of individual network realisations. We use the structural characteristics to study examples of neuronal dynamics, in the complete network and various sub-networks, and this allows us to explain the basis for key experimental findings, and make predictions for experiments. We also study how structural and functional features differ between detailed anatomical connectomes and those generated by our new, simpler, model (meta-model). PMID:29589828

  15. Oxytocin Neurons Exhibit Extensive Functional Plasticity Due To Offspring Age in Mothers and Fathers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelly, Aubrey M; Hiura, Lisa C; Saunders, Alexander G; Ophir, Alexander G

    2017-09-01

    The needs of offspring change as they develop. Thus, parents should concomitantly change their investment based on the age-related needs of the offspring as they mature. Due to the high costs of parental care, it is optimal for parents to exhibit a shift from intense caregiving of young offspring to promoting independence in older offspring. Yet, the neural mechanisms that underlie shifts in parental behavior are poorly understood, and little is known about how the parental brain responds to offspring of different ages. To elucidate mechanisms that relate to shifts in parental behavior as offspring develop, we examined behavioral and neural responses of male and female prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster), a biparental rodent, to interactions with offspring at different stages of development (ranging from neonatal to weaning age). Importantly, in biparental species, males and females may adjust their behavior differentially as offspring develop. Because the nonapeptides, vasopressin (VP) and oxytocin (OT), are well known for modulating aspects of parental care, we focused on functional activity of distinct VP and OT cell groups within the maternal and paternal brain in response to separation from, reunion (after a brief period of separation) with, or no separation from offspring of different ages. We found several differences in the neural responses of individual VP and OT cell groups that varied based on the age of pups and sex of the parent. Hypothalamic VP neurons exhibit similar functional responses in both mothers and fathers. However, hypothalamic and amygdalar OT neurons exhibit differential functional responses to being separated from pups based on the sex of the parent. Our results also reveal that the developmental stage of offspring significantly impacts neural function within OT, but not VP, cell groups of both mothers and fathers. These findings provide insight into the functional plastic capabilities of the nonapeptide system, specifically in relation

  16. Mapping human temporal and parietal neuronal population activity and functional coupling during mathematical cognition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daitch, Amy L.; Foster, Brett L.; Schrouff, Jessica; Rangarajan, Vinitha; Kaşikçi, Itır; Gattas, Sandra; Parvizi, Josef

    2016-01-01

    Brain areas within the lateral parietal cortex (LPC) and ventral temporal cortex (VTC) have been shown to code for abstract quantity representations and for symbolic numerical representations, respectively. To explore the fast dynamics of activity within each region and the interaction between them, we used electrocorticography recordings from 16 neurosurgical subjects implanted with grids of electrodes over these two regions and tracked the activity within and between the regions as subjects performed three different numerical tasks. Although our results reconfirm the presence of math-selective hubs within the VTC and LPC, we report here a remarkable heterogeneity of neural responses within each region at both millimeter and millisecond scales. Moreover, we show that the heterogeneity of response profiles within each hub mirrors the distinct patterns of functional coupling between them. Our results support the existence of multiple bidirectional functional loops operating between discrete populations of neurons within the VTC and LPC during the visual processing of numerals and the performance of arithmetic functions. These findings reveal information about the dynamics of numerical processing in the brain and also provide insight into the fine-grained functional architecture and connectivity within the human brain. PMID:27821758

  17. 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. Copyright © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. Optogenetic release of norepinephrine from cardiac sympathetic neurons alters mechanical and electrical function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wengrowski, Anastasia M; Wang, Xin; Tapa, Srinivas; Posnack, Nikki Gillum; Mendelowitz, David; Kay, Matthew W

    2015-02-01

    Release of norepinephrine (NE) from sympathetic neurons enhances heart rate (HR) and developed force through activation of β-adrenergic receptors, and this sympathoexcitation is a key risk for the generation of cardiac arrhythmias. Studies of β-adrenergic modulation of cardiac function typically involve the administration of exogenous β-adrenergic receptor agonists to directly elicit global β-adrenergic receptor activation by bypassing the involvement of sympathetic nerve terminals. In this work, we use a novel method to activate sympathetic fibres within the myocardium of Langendorff-perfused hearts while measuring changes in electrical and mechanical function. The light-activated optogenetic protein channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2) was expressed in murine catecholaminergic sympathetic neurons. Sympathetic fibres were then photoactivated to examine changes in contractile force, HR, and cardiac electrical activity. Incidence of arrhythmia was measured with and without exposure to photoactivation of sympathetic fibres, and hearts were optically mapped to detect changes in action potential durations and conduction velocities. Results demonstrate facilitation of both developed force and HR after photostimulated release of NE, with increases in contractile force and HR of 34.5 ± 5.5 and 25.0 ± 9.3%, respectively. Photostimulation of sympathetic fibres also made hearts more susceptible to arrhythmia, with greater incidence and severity. In addition, optically mapped action potentials displayed a small but significant shortening of the plateau phase (-5.5 ± 1.0 ms) after photostimulation. This study characterizes a powerful and clinically relevant new model for studies of cardiac arrhythmias generated by increasing the activity of sympathetic nerve terminals and the resulting activation of myocyte β-adrenergic receptors. Published on behalf of the European Society of Cardiology. All rights reserved. © The Author 2014. For permissions please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  19. Roles for the VCP co-factors Npl4 and Ufd1 in neuronal function in Drosophila melanogaster.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Byrne, Dwayne J; Harmon, Mark J; Simpson, Jeremy C; Blackstone, Craig; O'Sullivan, Niamh C

    2017-10-20

    The VCP-Ufd1-Npl4 complex regulates proteasomal processing within cells by delivering ubiquitinated proteins to the proteasome for degradation. Mutations in VCP are associated with two neurodegenerative diseases, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and inclusion body myopathy with Paget's disease of the bone and frontotemporal dementia (IBMPFD), and extensive study has revealed crucial functions of VCP within neurons. By contrast, little is known about the functions of Npl4 or Ufd1 in vivo. Using neuronal-specific knockdown of Npl4 or Ufd1 in Drosophila melanogaster, we infer that Npl4 contributes to microtubule organization within developing motor neurons. Moreover, Npl4 RNAi flies present with neurodegenerative phenotypes including progressive locomotor deficits, reduced lifespan and increased accumulation of TAR DNA-binding protein-43 homolog (TBPH). Knockdown, but not overexpression, of TBPH also exacerbates Npl4 RNAi-associated adult-onset neurodegenerative phenotypes. In contrast, we find that neuronal knockdown of Ufd1 has little effect on neuromuscular junction (NMJ) organization, TBPH accumulation or adult behaviour. These findings suggest the differing neuronal functions of Npl4 and Ufd1 in vivo. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  20. The role of MAC1 in diesel exhaust particle-induced microglial activation and loss of dopaminergic neuron function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levesque, Shannon; Taetzsch, Thomas; Lull, Melinda E; Johnson, Jo Anne; McGraw, Constance; Block, Michelle L

    2013-06-01

    Increasing reports support that air pollution causes neuroinflammation and is linked to central nervous system (CNS) disease/damage. Diesel exhaust particles (DEP) are a major component of urban air pollution, which has been linked to microglial activation and Parkinson's disease-like pathology. To begin to address how DEP may exert CNS effects, microglia and neuron-glia cultures were treated with either nanometer-sized DEP (neuron function was assessed. All three treatments showed enhanced ameboid microglia morphology, increased H2 O2 production, and decreased DA uptake. Mechanistic inquiry revealed that the scavenger receptor inhibitor fucoidan blocked DEP internalization in microglia, but failed to alter DEP-induced H2 O2 production in microglia. However, pre-treatment with the MAC1/CD11b inhibitor antibody blocked microglial H2 O2 production in response to DEP. MAC1(-/-) mesencephalic neuron-glia cultures were protected from DEP-induced loss of DA neuron function, as measured by DA uptake. These findings support that DEP may activate microglia through multiple mechanisms, where scavenger receptors regulate internalization of DEP and the MAC1 receptor is mandatory for both DEP-induced microglial H2 O2 production and loss of DA neuron function. © 2013 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  1. Embryonic Cell Grafts in a Culture Model of Spinal Cord Lesion: Neuronal Relay Formation is Essential for Functional Regeneration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  2. Nuclear Organization in the Spinal Cord Depends on Motor Neuron Lamination Orchestrated by Catenin and Afadin Function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carola Dewitz

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Motor neurons in the spinal cord are found grouped in nuclear structures termed pools, whose position is precisely orchestrated during development. Despite the emerging role of pool organization in the assembly of spinal circuits, little is known about the morphogenetic programs underlying the patterning of motor neuron subtypes. We applied three-dimensional analysis of motor neuron position to reveal the roles and contributions of cell adhesive function by inactivating N-cadherin, catenin, and afadin signaling. Our findings reveal that nuclear organization of motor neurons is dependent on inside-out positioning, orchestrated by N-cadherin, catenin, and afadin activities, controlling cell body layering on the medio-lateral axis. In addition to this lamination-like program, motor neurons undergo a secondary, independent phase of organization. This process results in segregation of motor neurons along the dorso-ventral axis of the spinal cord, does not require N-cadherin or afadin activity, and can proceed even when medio-lateral positioning is perturbed.

  3. Nuclear Organization in the Spinal Cord Depends on Motor Neuron Lamination Orchestrated by Catenin and Afadin Function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dewitz, Carola; Pimpinella, Sofia; Hackel, Patrick; Akalin, Altuna; Jessell, Thomas M; Zampieri, Niccolò

    2018-02-13

    Motor neurons in the spinal cord are found grouped in nuclear structures termed pools, whose position is precisely orchestrated during development. Despite the emerging role of pool organization in the assembly of spinal circuits, little is known about the morphogenetic programs underlying the patterning of motor neuron subtypes. We applied three-dimensional analysis of motor neuron position to reveal the roles and contributions of cell adhesive function by inactivating N-cadherin, catenin, and afadin signaling. Our findings reveal that nuclear organization of motor neurons is dependent on inside-out positioning, orchestrated by N-cadherin, catenin, and afadin activities, controlling cell body layering on the medio-lateral axis. In addition to this lamination-like program, motor neurons undergo a secondary, independent phase of organization. This process results in segregation of motor neurons along the dorso-ventral axis of the spinal cord, does not require N-cadherin or afadin activity, and can proceed even when medio-lateral positioning is perturbed. Copyright © 2018 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Motor Neurons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hounsgaard, Jorn

    2017-01-01

    Motor neurons translate synaptic input from widely distributed premotor networks into patterns of action potentials that orchestrate motor unit force and motor behavior. Intercalated between the CNS and muscles, motor neurons add to and adjust the final motor command. The identity and functional...... in in vitro preparations is far from complete. Nevertheless, a foundation has been provided for pursuing functional significance of intrinsic response properties in motoneurons in vivo during motor behavior at levels from molecules to systems....

  5. Telomerase activity-independent function of telomerase reverse transcriptase is involved in acrylamide-induced neuron damage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, P; Pan, H; Wang, J; Liu, X; Hu, X

    2014-07-01

    Polyacrylamide is used widely in industry, and its decomposition product, acrylamide (ACR), readily finds its way into commonly consumed cosmetics and baked and fried foods. ACR exerts potent neurotoxic effects in human and animal models. Telomerase reverse transcriptase (TERT), the catalytic subunit of telomerase, traditionally has been considered to play an important role in maintaining telomere length. Emerging evidence has shown, however, that TERT plays an important role in neuroprotection by inhibiting apoptosis and excitotoxicity, and by promoting angiogenesis, neuronal survival and neurogenesis, which are closely related to the telomere-independent functions of TERT. We investigated whether and how the TERT pathway is involved in ACR induced neurotoxicity in rat cortical neurons. We found that ACR 1) significantly reduced the viability of cortical neurons as measured by MTT assay, 2) induced neuron apoptosis as revealed by FITC-conjugated Annexin V/PI double staining and flow cytometry (FACS) analysis, 3) elevated expression of cleaved caspase-3, and 4) decreased bcl-2 expression of cortical neurons. ACR also increased intracellular ROS levels in cortical neurons, increased MDA levels and reduced GSH, SOD and GSH-Px levels in mitochondria in a dose-dependent manner. We found that TERT expression in mitochondria was increased by ACR at concentrations of 2.5 and 5.0 mM, but TERT expression was decreased by 10 mM ACR. Telomerase activity, however, was undetectable in rat cortical neurons. Our results suggest that the TERT pathway is involved in ACR induced apoptosis of cortical neurons. TERT also may exert its neuroprotective role in a telomerase activity-independent way, especially in mitochondria.

  6. Respiratory function after selective respiratory motor neuron death from intrapleural CTB-saporin injections.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nichols, Nicole L; Vinit, Stéphane; Bauernschmidt, Lorene; Mitchell, Gordon S

    2015-05-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) causes progressive motor neuron degeneration, paralysis and death by ventilatory failure. In rodent ALS models: 1) breathing capacity is preserved until late in disease progression despite major respiratory motor neuron death, suggesting unknown forms of compensatory respiratory plasticity; and 2) spinal microglia become activated in association with motor neuron cell death. Here, we report a novel experimental model to study the impact of respiratory motor neuron death on compensatory responses without many complications attendant to spontaneous motor neuron disease. In specific, we used intrapleural injections of cholera toxin B fragment conjugated to saporin (CTB-SAP) to selectively kill motor neurons with access to the pleural space. Motor neuron survival, CD11b labeling (microglia), ventilatory capacity and phrenic motor output were assessed in rats 3-28days after intrapleural injections of: 1) CTB-SAP (25 and 50μg), or 2) unconjugated CTB and SAP (i.e. control; (CTB+SAP). CTB-SAP elicited dose-dependent phrenic and intercostal motor neuron death; 7days post-25μg CTB-SAP, motor neuron survival approximated that in end-stage ALS rats (phrenic: 36±7%; intercostal: 56±10% of controls; n=9; pneuron death and provides an opportunity to study compensation for respiratory motor neuron loss. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  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. On the mechanism of irradiation effect on the function of Helix pomatia neuron Na+, K+-pump

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ajrapetyan, S.N.; Egorova, E.G.; Sagiyan, A.A.; Dadalyan, S.S.; Dvoretskij, A.I.; Sulejmonyan, M.A.

    1987-01-01

    Mechanism of irradiation effect on passive permeability, Na + /Ca 2+ exchange, Na + , K + -pump function intensity, the number of membrane functionally active pump units (Na + , K + -ATP-ase molecules) was determined using Helix pomatia and nervous ganglions isolated from them and irradiated by 5.16 Kl/kg dose. The data obtained show that ionizing radiation leads to obvious destructions in the mechanisms of neuron Na + , K + -pump functioning

  9. Organotins in Neuronal Damage, Brain Function, and Behavior: A Short Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Igor Ferraz da Silva

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The consequences of exposure to environmental contaminants have shown significant effects on brain function and behavior in different experimental models. The endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDC present various classes of pollutants with potential neurotoxic actions, such as organotins (OTs. OTs have received special attention due to their toxic effects on the central nervous system, leading to abnormal mammalian neuroendocrine axis function. OTs are organometallic pollutants with a tin atom bound to one or more carbon atoms. OT exposure may occur through the food chain and/or contaminated water, since they have multiple applications in industry and agriculture. In addition, OTs have been used with few legal restrictions in the last decades, despite being highly toxic. In addition to their action as EDC, OTs can also cross the blood–brain barrier and show relevant neurotoxic effects, as observed in several animal model studies specifically involving the development of neurodegenerative processes, neuroinflammation, and oxidative stress. Thus, the aim of this short review is to summarize the toxic effects of the most common OT compounds, such as trimethyltin, tributyltin, triethyltin, and triphenyltin, on the brain with a focus on neuronal damage as a result of oxidative stress and neuroinflammation. We also aim to present evidence for the disruption of behavioral functions, neurotransmitters, and neuroendocrine pathways caused by OTs.

  10. Electrophysiology of glioma: a Rho GTPase-activating protein reduces tumor growth and spares neuron structure and function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vannini, Eleonora; Olimpico, Francesco; Middei, Silvia; Ammassari-Teule, Martine; de Graaf, Erik L; McDonnell, Liam; Schmidt, Gudula; Fabbri, Alessia; Fiorentini, Carla; Baroncelli, Laura; Costa, Mario; Caleo, Matteo

    2016-12-01

    Glioblastomas are the most aggressive type of brain tumor. A successful treatment should aim at halting tumor growth and protecting neuronal cells to prevent functional deficits and cognitive deterioration. Here, we exploited a Rho GTPase-activating bacterial protein toxin, cytotoxic necrotizing factor 1 (CNF1), to interfere with glioma cell growth in vitro and vivo. We also investigated whether this toxin spares neuron structure and function in peritumoral areas. We performed a microarray transcriptomic and in-depth proteomic analysis to characterize the molecular changes triggered by CNF1 in glioma cells. We also examined tumor cell senescence and growth in vehicle- and CNF1-treated glioma-bearing mice. Electrophysiological and morphological techniques were used to investigate neuronal alterations in peritumoral cortical areas. Administration of CNF1 triggered molecular and morphological hallmarks of senescence in mouse and human glioma cells in vitro. CNF1 treatment in vivo induced glioma cell senescence and potently reduced tumor volumes. In peritumoral areas of glioma-bearing mice, neurons showed a shrunken dendritic arbor and severe functional alterations such as increased spontaneous activity and reduced visual responsiveness. CNF1 treatment enhanced dendritic length and improved several physiological properties of pyramidal neurons, demonstrating functional preservation of the cortical network. Our findings demonstrate that CNF1 reduces glioma volume while at the same time maintaining the physiological and structural properties of peritumoral neurons. These data indicate a promising strategy for the development of more effective antiglioma therapies. © The Author(s) 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Neuro-Oncology. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  11. Barrier Function-Based Neural Adaptive Control With Locally Weighted Learning and Finite Neuron Self-Growing Strategy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jia, Zi-Jun; Song, Yong-Duan

    2017-06-01

    This paper presents a new approach to construct neural adaptive control for uncertain nonaffine systems. By integrating locally weighted learning with barrier Lyapunov function (BLF), a novel control design method is presented to systematically address the two critical issues in neural network (NN) control field: one is how to fulfill the compact set precondition for NN approximation, and the other is how to use varying rather than a fixed NN structure to improve the functionality of NN control. A BLF is exploited to ensure the NN inputs to remain bounded during the entire system operation. To account for system nonlinearities, a neuron self-growing strategy is proposed to guide the process for adding new neurons to the system, resulting in a self-adjustable NN structure for better learning capabilities. It is shown that the number of neurons needed to accomplish the control task is finite, and better performance can be obtained with less number of neurons as compared with traditional methods. The salient feature of the proposed method also lies in the continuity of the control action everywhere. Furthermore, the resulting control action is smooth almost everywhere except for a few time instants at which new neurons are added. Numerical example illustrates the effectiveness of the proposed approach.

  12. Hydrogen sulfide regulates cardiovascular function by influencing the excitability of subfornical organ neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  13. Hydralazine administration activates sympathetic preganglionic neurons whose activity mobilizes glucose and increases cardiovascular function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parker, Lindsay M; Damanhuri, Hanafi A; Fletcher, Sophie P S; Goodchild, Ann K

    2015-04-16

    Hypotensive drugs have been used to identify central neurons that mediate compensatory baroreceptor reflex responses. Such drugs also increase blood glucose. Our aim was to identify the neurochemical phenotypes of sympathetic preganglionic neurons (SPN) and adrenal chromaffin cells activated following hydralazine (HDZ; 10mg/kg) administration in rats, and utilize this and SPN target organ destination to ascribe their function as cardiovascular or glucose regulating. Blood glucose was measured and adrenal chromaffin cell activation was assessed using c-Fos immunoreactivity (-ir) and phosphorylation of tyrosine hydroxylase, respectively. The activation and neurochemical phenotype of SPN innervating the adrenal glands and celiac ganglia were determined using the retrograde tracer cholera toxin B subunit, in combination with in situ hybridization and immunohistochemistry. Blood glucose was elevated at multiple time points following HDZ administration but little evidence of chromaffin cell activation was seen suggesting non-adrenal mechanisms contribute to the sustained hyperglycemia. 16±0.1% of T4-T11 SPN contained c-Fos and of these: 24.3±1.4% projected to adrenal glands and 29±5.5% projected to celiac ganglia with the rest innervating other targets. 62.8±1.4% of SPN innervating adrenal glands were activated and 29.9±3.3% expressed PPE mRNA whereas 53.2±8.6% of SPN innervating celiac ganglia were activated and 31.2±8.8% expressed PPE mRNA. CART-ir SPN innervating each target were also activated and did not co-express PPE mRNA. Neurochemical coding reveals that HDZ administration activates both PPE+SPN, whose activity increase glucose mobilization causing hyperglycemia, as well as CART+SPN whose activity drive vasomotor responses mediated by baroreceptor unloading to raise vascular tone and heart rate. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  15. Motor Neuron Diseases

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... and other neurodegenerative diseases to better understand the function of neurons and other support cells and identify candidate therapeutic ... and other neurodegenerative diseases to better understand the function of neurons and other support cells and identify candidate therapeutic ...

  16. Structural and functional brain signatures of C9orf72 in motor neuron disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agosta, Federica; Ferraro, Pilar M; Riva, Nilo; Spinelli, Edoardo Gioele; Domi, Teuta; Carrera, Paola; Copetti, Massimiliano; Falzone, Yuri; Ferrari, Maurizio; Lunetta, Christian; Comi, Giancarlo; Falini, Andrea; Quattrini, Angelo; Filippi, Massimo

    2017-09-01

    This study investigated structural and functional magnetic resonance imaging abnormalities in hexanucleotide repeat expansion in chromosome 9 open reading frame 72 (C9orf72) motor neuron disease (MND) relative to disease severity-matched sporadic MND cases. We enrolled 19 C9orf72 and 67 disease severity-matched sporadic MND patients, and 22 controls. Sporadic cases were grouped in patients with: no cognitive/behavioral deficits (sporadic-motor); same patterns of cognitive/behavioral impairment as C9orf72 cases (sporadic-cognitive); shorter disease duration versus other sporadic groups (sporadic-early). C9orf72 patients showed cerebellar and thalamic atrophy versus all sporadic cases. All MND patients showed motor, frontal, and temporoparietal cortical thinning and motor and extramotor white matter damage versus controls, independent of genotype and presence of cognitive impairment. Compared with sporadic-early, C9orf72 patients revealed an occipital cortical thinning. C9orf72 patients had enhanced visual network functional connectivity versus sporadic-motor and sporadic-early cases. Structural cerebellar and thalamic damage and posterior cortical alterations are the brain magnetic resonance imaging signatures of C9orf72 MND. Frontotemporal cortical and widespread white matter involvement are likely to be an effect of the disease evolution rather than a C9orf72 marker. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  18. Respiratory function after selective respiratory motor neuron death from intrapleural CTB–saporin injections

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nichols, Nicole L.; Vinit, Stéphane; Bauernschmidt, Lorene; Mitchell, Gordon S.

    2015-01-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) causes progressive motor neuron degeneration, paralysis and death by ventilatory failure. In rodent ALS models: 1) breathing capacity is preserved until late in disease progression despite major respiratory motor neuron death, suggesting unknown forms of compensatory respiratory plasticity; and 2) spinal microglia become activated in association with motor neuron cell death. Here, we report a novel experimental model to study the impact of respiratory motor neuron death on compensatory responses without many complications attendant to spontaneous motor neuron disease. In specific, we used intrapleural injections of cholera toxin B fragment conjugated to saporin (CTB–SAP) to selectively kill motor neurons with access to the pleural space. Motor neuron survival, CD11b labeling (microglia), ventilatory capacity and phrenic motor output were assessed in rats 3–28 days after intrapleural injections of: 1) CTB–SAP (25 and 50 μg), or 2) unconjugated CTB and SAP (i.e. control; (CTB + SAP). CTB–SAP elicited dose-dependent phrenic and intercostal motor neuron death; 7 days post-25 μg CTB–SAP, motor neuron survival approximated that in end-stage ALS rats (phrenic: 36 ± 7%; intercostal: 56 ± 10% of controls; n = 9; p phrenic motor nucleus, indicating microglial activation; 2) decreased breathing during maximal chemoreceptor stimulation; and 3) diminished phrenic motor output in anesthetized rats (7 days post-25 μg, CTB–SAP: 0.3 ± 0.07 V; CTB + SAP: 1.5 ± 0.3; n = 9; p < 0.05). Intrapleural CTB–SAP represents a novel, inducible model of respiratory motor neuron death and provides an opportunity to study compensation for respiratory motor neuron loss. PMID:25476493

  19. Planar polarity pathway and Nance-Horan syndrome-like 1b have essential cell-autonomous functions in neuronal migration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walsh, Gregory S; Grant, Paul K; Morgan, John A; Moens, Cecilia B

    2011-07-01

    Components of the planar cell polarity (PCP) pathway are required for the caudal tangential migration of facial branchiomotor (FBM) neurons, but how PCP signaling regulates this migration is not understood. In a forward genetic screen, we identified a new gene, nhsl1b, required for FBM neuron migration. nhsl1b encodes a WAVE-homology domain-containing protein related to human Nance-Horan syndrome (NHS) protein and Drosophila GUK-holder (Gukh), which have been shown to interact with components of the WAVE regulatory complex that controls cytoskeletal dynamics and with the polarity protein Scribble, respectively. Nhsl1b localizes to FBM neuron membrane protrusions and interacts physically and genetically with Scrib to control FBM neuron migration. Using chimeric analysis, we show that FBM neurons have two modes of migration: one involving interactions between the neurons and their planar-polarized environment, and an alternative, collective mode involving interactions between the neurons themselves. We demonstrate that the first mode of migration requires the cell-autonomous functions of Nhsl1b and the PCP components Scrib and Vangl2 in addition to the non-autonomous functions of Scrib and Vangl2, which serve to polarize the epithelial cells in the environment of the migrating neurons. These results define a role for Nhsl1b as a neuronal effector of PCP signaling and indicate that proper FBM neuron migration is directly controlled by PCP signaling between the epithelium and the migrating neurons.

  20. An electronic implementation for Liao's chaotic delayed neuron model with non-monotonous activation function

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Duan Shukai [Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Chongqing University, Chongqing 400044 (China); School of Electronic and Information Engineering, Southwest University, Chongqing 400715 (China)], E-mail: duansk@swu.edu.cn; Liao Xiaofeng [Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Chongqing University, Chongqing 400044 (China)], E-mail: xfliao@cqu.edu.cn

    2007-09-10

    A new chaotic delayed neuron model with non-monotonously increasing transfer function, called as chaotic Liao's delayed neuron model, was recently reported and analyzed. An electronic implementation of this model is described in detail. At the same time, some methods in circuit design, especially for circuit with time delayed unit and non-monotonously increasing activation unit, are also considered carefully. We find that the dynamical behaviors of the designed circuits are closely similar to the results predicted by numerical experiments.

  1. En masse in vitro functional profiling of the axonal mechanosensitivity of sensory neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Usoskin, Dmitry; Zilberter, Misha; Linnarsson, Sten; Hjerling-Leffler, Jens; Uhlén, Per; Harkany, Tibor; Ernfors, Patrik

    2010-09-14

    Perception of the environment relies on somatosensory neurons. Mechanosensory, proprioceptor and many nociceptor subtypes of these neurons have specific mechanosensitivity profiles to adequately differentiate stimulus patterns. Nevertheless, the cellular basis of differential mechanosensation remains largely elusive. Successful transduction of sensory information relies on the recruitment of sensory neurons and mechanosensation occurring at their peripheral axonal endings in vivo. Conspicuously, existing in vitro models aimed to decipher molecular mechanisms of mechanosensation test single sensory neuron somata at any one time. Here, we introduce a compartmental in vitro chamber design to deliver precisely controlled mechanical stimulation of sensory axons with synchronous real-time imaging of Ca(2+) transients in neuronal somata that reliably reflect action potential firing patterns. We report of three previously not characterized types of mechanosensitive neuron subpopulations with distinct intrinsic axonal properties tuned specifically to static indentation or vibration stimuli, showing that different classes of sensory neurons are tuned to specific types of mechanical stimuli. Primary receptor currents of vibration neurons display rapidly adapting conductance reliably detected for every single stimulus during vibration and are consistently converted into action potentials. This result allows for the characterization of two critical steps of mechanosensation in vivo: primary signal detection and signal conversion into specific action potential firing patterns in axons.

  2. Function and coding in the blowfly H1 neuron during naturalistic optic flow

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hateren, J.H. van; Kern, R.; Schwerdtfeger, G.; Egelhaaf, M.

    2005-01-01

    Naturalistic stimuli, reconstructed from measured eye movements of flying blowflies, were replayed on a panoramic stimulus device. The directional movement-sensitive H1 neuron was recorded from blowflies watching these stimuli. The response of the H1 neuron is dominated by the response to fast

  3. Sympathetic neurons are a powerful driver of myocyte function in cardiovascular disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larsen, Hege E; Lefkimmiatis, Konstantinos; Paterson, David J

    2016-12-14

    Many therapeutic interventions in disease states of heightened cardiac sympathetic activity are targeted to the myocytes. However, emerging clinical data highlights a dominant role in disease progression by the neurons themselves. Here we describe a novel experimental model of the peripheral neuro-cardiac axis to study the neuron's ability to drive a myocyte cAMP phenotype. We employed a co-culture of neonatal ventricular myocytes and sympathetic stellate neurons from normal (WKY) and pro-hypertensive (SHR) rats that are sympathetically hyper-responsive and measured nicotine evoked cAMP responses in the myocytes using a fourth generation FRET cAMP sensor. We demonstrated the dominant role of neurons in driving the myocyte ß-adrenergic phenotype, where SHR cultures elicited heightened myocyte cAMP responses during neural activation. Moreover, cross-culturing healthy neurons onto diseased myocytes rescued the diseased cAMP response of the myocyte. Conversely, healthy myocytes developed a diseased cAMP response if diseased neurons were introduced. Our results provide evidence for a dominant role played by the neuron in driving the adrenergic phenotype seen in cardiovascular disease. We also highlight the potential of using healthy neurons to turn down the gain of neurotransmission, akin to a smart pre-synaptic ß-blocker.

  4. GLT-1-Dependent Disruption of CNS Glutamate Homeostasis and Neuronal Function by the Protozoan Parasite Toxoplasma gondii.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clément N David

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The immune privileged nature of the CNS can make it vulnerable to chronic and latent infections. Little is known about the effects of lifelong brain infections, and thus inflammation, on the neurological health of the host. Toxoplasma gondii is a parasite that can infect any mammalian nucleated cell with average worldwide seroprevalence rates of 30%. Infection by Toxoplasma is characterized by the lifelong presence of parasitic cysts within neurons in the brain, requiring a competent immune system to prevent parasite reactivation and encephalitis. In the immunocompetent individual, Toxoplasma infection is largely asymptomatic, however many recent studies suggest a strong correlation with certain neurodegenerative and psychiatric disorders. Here, we demonstrate a significant reduction in the primary astrocytic glutamate transporter, GLT-1, following infection with Toxoplasma. Using microdialysis of the murine frontal cortex over the course of infection, a significant increase in extracellular concentrations of glutamate is observed. Consistent with glutamate dysregulation, analysis of neurons reveal changes in morphology including a reduction in dendritic spines, VGlut1 and NeuN immunoreactivity. Furthermore, behavioral testing and EEG recordings point to significant changes in neuronal output. Finally, these changes in neuronal connectivity are dependent on infection-induced downregulation of GLT-1 as treatment with the ß-lactam antibiotic ceftriaxone, rescues extracellular glutamate concentrations, neuronal pathology and function. Altogether, these data demonstrate that following an infection with T. gondii, the delicate regulation of glutamate by astrocytes is disrupted and accounts for a range of deficits observed in chronic infection.

  5. Conditional ablation of orexin/hypocretin neurons: a new mouse model for the study of narcolepsy and orexin system function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tabuchi, Sawako; Tsunematsu, Tomomi; Black, Sarah W; Tominaga, Makoto; Maruyama, Megumi; Takagi, Kazuyo; Minokoshi, Yasuhiko; Sakurai, Takeshi; Kilduff, Thomas S; Yamanaka, Akihiro

    2014-05-07

    The sleep disorder narcolepsy results from loss of hypothalamic orexin/hypocretin neurons. Although narcolepsy onset is usually postpubertal, current mouse models involve loss of either orexin peptides or orexin neurons from birth. To create a model of orexin/hypocretin deficiency with closer fidelity to human narcolepsy, diphtheria toxin A (DTA) was expressed in orexin neurons under control of the Tet-off system. Upon doxycycline removal from the diet of postpubertal orexin-tTA;TetO DTA mice, orexin neurodegeneration was rapid, with 80% cell loss within 7 d, and resulted in disrupted sleep architecture. Cataplexy, the pathognomic symptom of narcolepsy, occurred by 14 d when ∼5% of the orexin neurons remained. Cataplexy frequency increased for at least 11 weeks after doxycycline. Temporary doxycycline removal followed by reintroduction after several days enabled partial lesion of orexin neurons. DTA-induced orexin neurodegeneration caused a body weight increase without a change in food consumption, mimicking metabolic aspects of human narcolepsy. Because the orexin/hypocretin system has been implicated in the control of metabolism and addiction as well as sleep/wake regulation, orexin-tTA; TetO DTA mice are a novel model in which to study these functions, for pharmacological studies of cataplexy, and to study network reorganization as orexin input is lost.

  6. Cryopreservation Maintains Functionality of Human iPSC Dopamine Neurons and Rescues Parkinsonian Phenotypes In Vivo

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dustin R. Wakeman

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available A major challenge for clinical application of pluripotent stem cell therapy for Parkinson's disease (PD is large-scale manufacturing and cryopreservation of neurons that can be efficiently prepared with minimal manipulation. To address this obstacle, midbrain dopamine neurons were derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC-mDA and cryopreserved in large production lots for biochemical and transplantation studies. Cryopreserved, post-mitotic iPSC-mDA neurons retained high viability with gene, protein, and electrophysiological signatures consistent with midbrain floor-plate lineage. To test therapeutic efficacy, cryopreserved iPSC-mDA neurons were transplanted without subculturing into the 6-OHDA-lesioned rat and MPTP-lesioned non-human-primate models of PD. Grafted neurons retained midbrain lineage with extensive fiber innervation in both rodents and monkeys. Behavioral assessment in 6-OHDA-lesioned rats demonstrated significant reversal in functional deficits up to 6 months post transplantation with reinnervation of the host striatum and no aberrant growth, supporting the translational development of pluripotent cell-based therapies in PD.

  7. The efflux of choline from nerve cells: mediation by ionic gradients and functional exchange of choline from glia to neurons

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hoffmann, D.; Ferret, B.; Massarelli, R.; Mykita, S.

    1986-01-01

    This paper analyzes the relationship between ions and the efflux of choline, and suggests the possibility of a balance effect for choline fluxes which is produced and maintained by ioinic gradients. It is also suggested that glial cells may actively exchange choline with neurons during nerve actively exchange choline with neurons during nerve activity, and that they may function as a choline reservoir for neuronal needs. The study shows that neurons and glial cells spontaneously discharge choline into the incubation medium. The exiting choline is essentially of free origin, as can be seen in an illustration provided. Neurons and glial cells had been prelabelled with ( 14 C) choline overnight, and labelled for 15 min with tritium-choline. The higher amount of tritium-choline exiting the cells indicates that it is the freshly labelled choline which is preferentially released. The remaining of ( 14 C) - choline exiting the cells corresponds to the free choline of phospholipid origin which amounts to about one third of the total free choline content

  8. The Hem protein mediates neuronal migration by inhibiting WAVE degradation and functions opposite of Abelson tyrosine kinase

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Zengrong; Bhat, Krishna Moorthi

    2011-01-01

    In the nervous system, neurons form in different regions, then they migrate and occupy specific positions. We have previously shown that RP2/sib, a well-studied neuronal pair in the Drosophila ventral nerve cord (VNC), has a complex migration route. Here, we show that the Hem protein, via the WAVE complex, regulates migration of GMC-1 and its progeny RP2 neuron. In Hem or WAVE mutants, RP2 neuron either abnormally migrates, crossing the midline from one hemisegment to the contralateral hemisegment, or does not migrate at al and fail to send out its axon projection. We report that Hem regulates neuronal migration through stabilizing WAVE. Since Hem and WAVE normally form a complex, our data argues that in the absence of Hem, WAVE, which is presumably no longer in a complex, becomes susceptible to degradation. We also find that Abelson Tyrosine kinase affects RP2 migration in a similar manner as Hem and WAVE, and appears to operate via WAVE. However, while Abl negatively regulates the levels of WAVE, it regulates migration via regulating the activity of WAVE. Our results also show that during the degradation of WAVE, Hem function is opposite to that of and downstream of Abl. PMID:21726548

  9. Possibilities of introducing different functional circuits on top of a structural neuron triplet: Where do the gains lie?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Franović, Igor; Miljković, Vladimir

    2012-01-01

    Highlights: ► We identify different types of functional circuits in structural triplets. ► The approach utilizes the properties of synapses with fast-threshold modulation. ► We observe correspondence between sequences in the time series and the triads. ► Triads are assigned roles with respect to synchronization. ► Regularization of bursting series is explained by classifying all the bursts. - Abstract: Instigated by the research on clusterization phenomena in complex neural networks, we study a triplet of bursting Rulkov map neurons connected via inhibitory synapses with delay. It is demonstrated how on a background of structural motif one can build different types of functional circuits. The approach is based on utilizing the properties of the chemical synapses, whose gating is modeled by the fast threshold modulation, in conjunction with the phase plane analysis, allowing the system state to be represented in terms of maps the neurons reside on. For both the dynamical configurations, monitoring the layout of active neurons, and the functional motifs, following the maps where the synchronized neurons lie, we establish a one-on-one correspondence between sequences in the time series and the triads, making up the subgraphs of the original graph. By introducing the appropriate sets of quantities, one obtains not only the distributions of triads as a function of synaptic parameters, but is also able to identify a distinct triad whose presence may be viewed as a signature of the burst synchronization process. In another setup, the regularization of burst cycles for an arbitrary neuron is explained by classifying all the bursts as long or short, with their fractions linked to the abundances of triads under variation of synaptic parameters.

  10. Multifocus microscopy with precise color multi-phase diffractive optics applied in functional neuronal imaging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abrahamsson, Sara; Ilic, Rob; Wisniewski, Jan; Mehl, Brian; Yu, Liya; Chen, Lei; Davanco, Marcelo; Oudjedi, Laura; Fiche, Jean-Bernard; Hajj, Bassam; Jin, Xin; Pulupa, Joan; Cho, Christine; Mir, Mustafa; El Beheiry, Mohamed; Darzacq, Xavier; Nollmann, Marcelo; Dahan, Maxime; Wu, Carl; Lionnet, Timothée; Liddle, J Alexander; Bargmann, Cornelia I

    2016-03-01

    Multifocus microscopy (MFM) allows high-resolution instantaneous three-dimensional (3D) imaging and has been applied to study biological specimens ranging from single molecules inside cells nuclei to entire embryos. We here describe pattern designs and nanofabrication methods for diffractive optics that optimize the light-efficiency of the central optical component of MFM: the diffractive multifocus grating (MFG). We also implement a "precise color" MFM layout with MFGs tailored to individual fluorophores in separate optical arms. The reported advancements enable faster and brighter volumetric time-lapse imaging of biological samples. In live microscopy applications, photon budget is a critical parameter and light-efficiency must be optimized to obtain the fastest possible frame rate while minimizing photodamage. We provide comprehensive descriptions and code for designing diffractive optical devices, and a detailed methods description for nanofabrication of devices. Theoretical efficiencies of reported designs is ≈90% and we have obtained efficiencies of > 80% in MFGs of our own manufacture. We demonstrate the performance of a multi-phase MFG in 3D functional neuronal imaging in living C. elegans.

  11. Development of an iron-selective antioxidant probe with protective effects on neuronal function.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olimpo García-Beltrán

    Full Text Available Iron accumulation, oxidative stress and calcium signaling dysregulation are common pathognomonic signs of several neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson´s and Alzheimer's diseases, Friedreich ataxia and Huntington's disease. Given their therapeutic potential, the identification of multifunctional compounds that suppress these damaging features is highly desirable. Here, we report the synthesis and characterization of N-(1,3-dihydroxy-2-(hydroxymethylpropan-2-yl-2-(7-hydroxy-2-oxo-2H-chromen-4-ylacetamide, named CT51, which exhibited potent free radical neutralizing activity both in vitro and in cells. CT51 bound Fe2+ with high selectivity and Fe3+ with somewhat lower affinity. Cyclic voltammetric analysis revealed irreversible binding of Fe3+ to CT51, an important finding since stopping Fe2+/Fe3+ cycling in cells should prevent hydroxyl radical production resulting from the Fenton-Haber-Weiss cycle. When added to human neuroblastoma cells, CT51 freely permeated the cell membrane and distributed to both mitochondria and cytoplasm. Intracellularly, CT51 bound iron reversibly and protected against lipid peroxidation. Treatment of primary hippocampal neurons with CT51 reduced the sustained calcium release induced by an agonist of ryanodine receptor-calcium channels. These protective properties of CT51 on cellular function highlight its possible therapeutic use in diseases with significant oxidative, iron and calcium dysregulation.

  12. Modification of sympathetic neuronal function in the rat tail artery by dietary lipid treatment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Panek, R.L.; Dixon, W.R.; Rutledge, C.O.

    1985-01-01

    The effect of dietary lipid treatment on sympathetic neuronal function was examined in isolated perfused tail arteries of adult rats. The hypothesis that dietary manipulations alter the lipid environment of receptor proteins which may result in the perturbation of specific membrane-associated processes that regulate peripheral adrenergic neurotransmission in the vasculature was the basis for this investigation. In the present study, rats were fed semisynthetic diets enriched in either 16% coconut oil (saturated fat) or 16% sunflower oil (unsaturated fat). The field stimulation-evoked release of endogenous norepinephrine and total 3 H was decreased significantly in rats receiving the coconut oil diet when compared to either sunflower oil- or standard lab chow-fed rats. Norepinephrine content in artery segments from coconut oil-treated rats was significantly higher compared to either sunflower oil- or standard lab chow-fed rats. Tail arteries from rats receiving the coconut oil diet displayed significantly lower perfusion pressure responses to nerve stimulation at all frequencies tested when compared to the sunflower oil- or standard lab chow-fed rats. Vasoconstrictor responses of perfused tail arteries exposed to exogenous norepinephrine resulted in an EC50 for norepinephrine that was not changed by the dietary treatment, but adult rats receiving the sunflower oil diet displayed a significantly greater maximum response to exogenous norepinephrine (10(-5) M) compared to arteries from either coconut oil- or standard lab chow-fed rats

  13. Staufen- and FMRP-Containing Neuronal RNPs Are Structurally and Functionally Related to Somatic P Bodies

    OpenAIRE

    Barbee, Scott A.; Estes, Patricia S.; Cziko, Anne-Marie; Hillebrand, Jens; Luedeman, Rene A.; Coller, Jeff M.; Johnson, Nick; Howlett, Iris C.; Geng, Cuiyun; Ueda, Ryu; Brand, Andrea H.; Newbury, Sarah F.; Wilhelm, James E.; Levine, Richard B.; Nakamura, Akira

    2006-01-01

    Local control of mRNA translation modulates neuronal development, synaptic plasticity, and memory formation. A poorly understood aspect of this control is the role and composition of ribonucleoprotein (RNP) particles that mediate transport and translation of neuronal RNAs. Here, we show that staufen- and FMRPcontaining RNPs in Drosophila neurons contain proteins also present in somatic “P bodies,” including the RNA-degradative enzymes Dcp1p and Xrn1p/Pacman and crucial components of miRNA (ar...

  14. Activation of different neural precursor populations in the adult hippocampus: does this lead to new neurons with discrete functions?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jhaveri, Dhanisha J; Taylor, Chanel J; Bartlett, Perry F

    2012-07-01

    Resident populations of stem and precursor cells drive the production of new neurons in the adult hippocampus. Recent discoveries have highlighted that a large proportion of these precursor cells are in fact quiescent and can be activated by distinct neuronal activity under both normal physiological and pathological conditions. As growing evidence indicates that newborn neurons play a critical role in cognitive functions such as learning and memory and in mood regulation, it is paramount that we obtain a better understanding of how the reservoirs of stem and precursor cells are maintained and activated. In this review, we critically examine the roles of key molecular mechanisms that have been shown to regulate hippocampal precursor cells, especially their activation. We believe that understanding the mechanistic details of the activity-driven regulation of precursor cells will equip us with the ability to develop tailored strategies to trigger the generation of new neurons, thereby improving the functional outcomes in various neurological and psychiatric conditions. Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  15. Pubertally born neurons and glia are functionally integrated into limbic and hypothalamic circuits of the male Syrian hamster.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohr, Margaret A; Sisk, Cheryl L

    2013-03-19

    During puberty, the brain goes through extensive remodeling, involving the addition of new neurons and glia to brain regions beyond the canonical neurogenic regions (i.e., dentate gyrus and olfactory bulb), including limbic and hypothalamic cell groups associated with sex-typical behavior. Whether these pubertally born cells become functionally integrated into neural circuits remains unknown. To address this question, we gave male Syrian hamsters daily injections of the cell birthdate marker bromodeoxyuridine throughout puberty (postnatal day 28-49). Half of the animals were housed in enriched environments with access to a running wheel to determine whether enrichment increased the survival of pubertally born cells compared with the control environment. At 4 wk after the last BrdU injection, animals were allowed to interact with a receptive female and were then killed 1 h later. Triple-label immunofluorescence for BrdU, the mature neuron marker neuronal nuclear antigen, and the astrocytic marker glial fibrillary acidic protein revealed that a proportion of pubertally born cells in the medial preoptic area, arcuate nucleus, and medial amygdala differentiate into either mature neurons or astrocytes. Double-label immunofluorescence for BrdU and the protein Fos revealed that a subset of pubertally born cells in these regions is activated during sociosexual behavior, indicative of their functional incorporation into neural circuits. Enrichment affected the survival and activation of pubertally born cells in a brain region-specific manner. These results demonstrate that pubertally born cells located outside of the traditional neurogenic regions differentiate into neurons and glia and become functionally incorporated into neural circuits that subserve sex-typical behaviors.

  16. An Expanded Role for the RFX Transcription Factor DAF-19, with Dual Functions in Ciliated and Nonciliated Neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Stasio, Elizabeth A; Mueller, Katherine P; Bauer, Rosemary J; Hurlburt, Alexander J; Bice, Sophie A; Scholtz, Sophie L; Phirke, Prasad; Sugiaman-Trapman, Debora; Stinson, Loraina A; Olson, Haili B; Vogel, Savannah L; Ek-Vazquez, Zabdiel; Esemen, Yagmur; Korzynski, Jessica; Wolfe, Kelsey; Arbuckle, Bonnie N; Zhang, He; Lombard-Knapp, Gaelen; Piasecki, Brian P; Swoboda, Peter

    2018-03-01

    Regulatory Factor X (RFX) transcription factors (TFs) are best known for activating genes required for ciliogenesis in both vertebrates and invertebrates. In humans, eight RFX TFs have a variety of tissue-specific functions, while in the worm Caenorhabditis elegans , the sole RFX gene, daf-19 , encodes a set of nested isoforms. Null alleles of daf-19 confer pleiotropic effects including altered development with a dauer constitutive phenotype, complete absence of cilia and ciliary proteins, and defects in synaptic protein maintenance. We sought to identify RFX/ daf-19 target genes associated with neuronal functions other than ciliogenesis using comparative transcriptome analyses at different life stages of the worm. Subsequent characterization of gene expression patterns revealed one set of genes activated in the presence of DAF-19 in ciliated sensory neurons, whose activation requires the daf-19c isoform, also required for ciliogenesis. A second set of genes is downregulated in the presence of DAF-19, primarily in nonsensory neurons. The human orthologs of some of these neuronal genes are associated with human diseases. We report the novel finding that daf-19a is directly or indirectly responsible for downregulation of these neuronal genes in C. elegans by characterizing a new mutation affecting the daf-19a isoform ( tm5562 ) and not associated with ciliogenesis, but which confers synaptic and behavioral defects. Thus, we have identified a new regulatory role for RFX TFs in the nervous system. The new daf-19 candidate target genes we have identified by transcriptomics will serve to uncover the molecular underpinnings of the pleiotropic effects that daf-19 exerts on nervous system function. Copyright © 2018 by the Genetics Society of America.

  17. Cyclophosphamide-induced cystitis reduces ASIC channel but enhances TRPV1 receptor function in rat bladder sensory neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dang, Khoa; Bielefeldt, Klaus; Gebhart, G F

    2013-07-01

    Using patch-clamp techniques, we studied the plasticity of acid-sensing ion channels (ASIC) and transient receptor potential V1 (TRPV1) channel function in dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons retrogradely labeled from the bladder. Saline (control) or cyclophosphamide (CYP) was given intraperitoneally on days 1, 3, and 5. On day 6, lumbosacral (LS, L6-S2) or thoracolumbar (TL, T13-L2) DRG were removed and dissociated. Bladders and bladder DRG neurons from CYP-treated rats showed signs of inflammation (greater myeloperoxidase activity; lower intramuscular wall pH) and increased size (whole cell capacitance), respectively, compared with controls. Most bladder neurons (>90%) responded to protons and capsaicin. Protons produced multiphasic currents with distinct kinetics, whereas capsaicin always triggered a sustained response. The TRPV1 receptor antagonist A-425619 abolished capsaicin-triggered currents and raised the threshold of heat-activated currents. Prolonged exposure to an acidic environment (pH range: 7.2 to 6.6) inhibited proton-evoked currents, potentiated the capsaicin-evoked current, and reduced the threshold of heat-activated currents in LS and TL bladder neurons. CYP treatment reduced density but not kinetics of all current components triggered by pH 5. In contrast, CYP-treatment was associated with an increased current density in response to capsaicin in LS and TL bladder neurons. Correspondingly, heat triggered current at a significantly lower temperature in bladder neurons from CYP-treated rats compared with controls. These results reveal that cystitis differentially affects TRPV1- and ASIC-mediated currents in both bladder sensory pathways. Acidification of the bladder wall during inflammation may contribute to changes in nociceptive transmission mediated through the TRPV1 receptor, suggesting a role for TRPV1 in hypersensitivity associated with cystitis.

  18. Functionalizing Ascl1 with Novel Intracellular Protein Delivery Technology for Promoting Neuronal Differentiation of Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robinson, Meghan; Chapani, Parv; Styan, Tara; Vaidyanathan, Ranjani; Willerth, Stephanie Michelle

    2016-08-01

    Pluripotent stem cells can become any cell type found in the body. Accordingly, one of the major challenges when working with pluripotent stem cells is producing a highly homogenous population of differentiated cells, which can then be used for downstream applications such as cell therapies or drug screening. The transcription factor Ascl1 plays a key role in neural development and previous work has shown that Ascl1 overexpression using viral vectors can reprogram fibroblasts directly into neurons. Here we report on how a recombinant version of the Ascl1 protein functionalized with intracellular protein delivery technology (Ascl1-IPTD) can be used to rapidly differentiate human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) into neurons. We first evaluated a range of Ascl1-IPTD concentrations to determine the most effective amount for generating neurons from hiPSCs cultured in serum free media. Next, we looked at the frequency of Ascl1-IPTD supplementation in the media on differentiation and found that one time supplementation is sufficient enough to trigger the neural differentiation process. Ascl1-IPTD was efficiently taken up by the hiPSCs and enabled rapid differentiation into TUJ1-positive and NeuN-positive populations with neuronal morphology after 8 days. After 12 days of culture, hiPSC-derived neurons produced by Ascl1-IPTD treatment exhibited greater neurite length and higher numbers of branch points compared to neurons derived using a standard neural progenitor differentiation protocol. This work validates Ascl1-IPTD as a powerful tool for engineering neural tissue from pluripotent stem cells.

  19. VPS35 Deficiency or Mutation Causes Dopaminergic Neuronal Loss by Impairing Mitochondrial Fusion and Function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fu-Lei Tang

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Vacuolar protein sorting-35 (VPS35 is a retromer component for endosomal trafficking. Mutations of VPS35 have been linked to familial Parkinson’s disease (PD. Here, we show that specific deletion of the VPS35 gene in dopamine (DA neurons resulted in PD-like deficits, including loss of DA neurons and accumulation of α-synuclein. Intriguingly, mitochondria became fragmented and dysfunctional in VPS35-deficient DA neurons, phenotypes that could be restored by expressing VPS35 wild-type, but not PD-linked mutant. Concomitantly, VPS35 deficiency or mutation increased mitochondrial E3 ubiquitin ligase 1 (MUL1 and, thus, led to mitofusin 2 (MFN2 degradation and mitochondrial fragmentation. Suppression of MUL1 expression ameliorated MFN2 reduction and DA neuron loss but not α-synuclein accumulation. These results provide a cellular mechanism for VPS35 dysfunction in mitochondrial impairment and PD pathogenesis.

  20. Descending propriospinal neurons mediate restoration of locomotor function following spinal cord injury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benthall, Katelyn N.; Hough, Ryan A.

    2016-01-01

    Following spinal cord injury (SCI) in the lamprey, there is virtually complete recovery of locomotion within a few weeks, but interestingly, axonal regeneration of reticulospinal (RS) neurons is mostly limited to short distances caudal to the injury site. To explain this situation, we hypothesize that descending propriospinal (PS) neurons relay descending drive from RS neurons to indirectly activate spinal central pattern generators (CPGs). In the present study, the contributions of PS neurons to locomotor recovery were tested in the lamprey following SCI. First, long RS neuron projections were interrupted by staggered spinal hemitransections on the right side at 10% body length (BL; normalized from the tip of the oral hood) and on the left side at 30% BL. For acute recovery conditions (≤1 wk) and before axonal regeneration, swimming muscle burst activity was relatively normal, but with some deficits in coordination. Second, lampreys received two spaced complete spinal transections, one at 10% BL and one at 30% BL, to interrupt long-axon RS neuron projections. At short recovery times (3–5 wk), RS and PS neurons will have regenerated their axons for short distances and potentially established a polysynaptic descending command pathway. At these short recovery times, swimming muscle burst activity had only minor coordination deficits. A computer model that incorporated either of the two spinal lesions could mimic many aspects of the experimental data. In conclusion, descending PS neurons are a viable mechanism for indirect activation of spinal locomotor CPGs, although there can be coordination deficits of locomotor activity. NEW & NOTEWORTHY In the lamprey following spinal lesion-mediated interruption of long axonal projections of reticulospinal (RS) neurons, sensory stimulation still elicited relatively normal locomotor muscle burst activity, but with some coordination deficits. Computer models incorporating the spinal lesions could mimic many aspects of the

  1. Descending propriospinal neurons mediate restoration of locomotor function following spinal cord injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benthall, Katelyn N; Hough, Ryan A; McClellan, Andrew D

    2017-01-01

    Following spinal cord injury (SCI) in the lamprey, there is virtually complete recovery of locomotion within a few weeks, but interestingly, axonal regeneration of reticulospinal (RS) neurons is mostly limited to short distances caudal to the injury site. To explain this situation, we hypothesize that descending propriospinal (PS) neurons relay descending drive from RS neurons to indirectly activate spinal central pattern generators (CPGs). In the present study, the contributions of PS neurons to locomotor recovery were tested in the lamprey following SCI. First, long RS neuron projections were interrupted by staggered spinal hemitransections on the right side at 10% body length (BL; normalized from the tip of the oral hood) and on the left side at 30% BL. For acute recovery conditions (≤1 wk) and before axonal regeneration, swimming muscle burst activity was relatively normal, but with some deficits in coordination. Second, lampreys received two spaced complete spinal transections, one at 10% BL and one at 30% BL, to interrupt long-axon RS neuron projections. At short recovery times (3-5 wk), RS and PS neurons will have regenerated their axons for short distances and potentially established a polysynaptic descending command pathway. At these short recovery times, swimming muscle burst activity had only minor coordination deficits. A computer model that incorporated either of the two spinal lesions could mimic many aspects of the experimental data. In conclusion, descending PS neurons are a viable mechanism for indirect activation of spinal locomotor CPGs, although there can be coordination deficits of locomotor activity. In the lamprey following spinal lesion-mediated interruption of long axonal projections of reticulospinal (RS) neurons, sensory stimulation still elicited relatively normal locomotor muscle burst activity, but with some coordination deficits. Computer models incorporating the spinal lesions could mimic many aspects of the experimental results

  2. Carbon monoxide improves neuronal differentiation and yield by increasing the functioning and number of mitochondria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida, Ana S; Sonnewald, Ursula; Alves, Paula M; Vieira, Helena L A

    2016-08-01

    The process of cell differentiation goes hand-in-hand with metabolic adaptations, which are needed to provide energy and new metabolites. Carbon monoxide (CO) is an endogenous cytoprotective molecule able to inhibit cell death and improve mitochondrial metabolism. Neuronal differentiation processes were studied using the NT2 cell line, which is derived from human testicular embryonic teratocarcinoma and differentiates into post-mitotic neurons upon retinoic acid treatment. CO-releasing molecule A1 (CORM-A1) was used do deliver CO into cell culture. CO treatment improved NT2 neuronal differentiation and yield, since there were more neurons and the total cell number increased following the differentiation process. CO supplementation enhanced the mitochondrial population in post-mitotic neurons derived from NT2 cells, as indicated by an increase in mitochondrial DNA. CO treatment during neuronal differentiation increased the extent of the classical metabolic change that occurs during neuronal differentiation, from glycolytic to more oxidative metabolism, by decreasing the ratio of lactate production and glucose consumption. The expression of pyruvate and lactate dehydrogenases was higher, indicating an augmented oxidative metabolism. Moreover, these findings were corroborated by an increased percentage of (13) C incorporation from [U-(13) C]glucose into the tricarboxylic acid cycle metabolites malate and citrate, and also glutamate and aspartate in CO-treated cells. Finally, under low levels of oxygen (5%), which enhances glycolytic metabolism, some of the enhancing effects of CO on mitochondria were not observed. In conclusion, our data show that CO improves neuronal and mitochondrial yield by stimulation of tricarboxylic acid cycle activity, and thus oxidative metabolism of NT2 cells during the process of neuronal differentiation. The process of cell differentiation is coupled with metabolic adaptations. Carbon monoxide (CO) is an endogenous cytoprotective

  3. Correlating Anatomy and Function with Gene Expression in Individual Neurons by Combining in Vivo Labeling, Patch Clamp, and Single Cell RNA-seq

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carsten K. Pfeffer

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The classification of neurons into distinct types is an ongoing effort aimed at revealing and understanding the diversity of the components of the nervous system. Recently available methods allow us to determine the gene expression pattern of individual neurons in the mammalian cerebral cortex to generate powerful categorization schemes. For a thorough understanding of neuronal diversity such genetic categorization schemes need to be combined with traditional classification parameters like position, axonal projection or response properties to sensory stimulation. Here we describe a method to link the gene expression of individual neurons with their position, axonal projection, or sensory response properties. Neurons are labeled in vivo based on their anatomical or functional properties and, using patch clamp pipettes, their RNA individually harvested in vitro for RNAseq. We validate the methodology using multiple established molecularly and anatomically distinct cell populations and explore molecular differences between uncharacterized neurons in mouse visual cortex. Gene expression patterns between L5 neurons projecting to frontal or contralateral cortex are distinct while L2 neurons differing in position, projection, or function are molecularly similar. With this method we can determine the genetic expression pattern of functionally and anatomically identified individual neurons.

  4. The GluN2B subunit represents a major functional determinant of NMDA receptors in human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cortical neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ioana Neagoe

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Abnormal signaling pathways mediated by N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors (NMDARs have been implicated in the pathogenesis of various CNS disorders and have been long considered as promising points of therapeutic intervention. However, few efforts have been previously described concerning evaluation of therapeutic modulators of NMDARs and their downstream pathways in human neurons with endogenous expression of NMDARs. In the present study, we assessed expression, functionality, and subunit composition of endogenous NMDARs in human induced pluripotent stem cell (hiPSC-derived cortical neurons (iCell Neurons and iCell GlutaNeurons. We initially confirmed the expected pharmacological response of iCell Neurons and iCell GlutaNeurons to NMDA by patch-clamp recordings. Subsequent pharmacological interrogation using GluN2 subunit-selective antagonists revealed the predominance of GluN2B in both iCell Neurons and iCell GlutaNeurons. This observation was also supported by qRT-PCR and Western blot analyses of GluN2 subunit expression as well as pharmacological experiments using positive allosteric modulators with distinct GluN2 subunit selectivity. We conclude that iCell Neurons and iCell GlutaNeurons express functional GluN2B-containing NMDARs and could serve as a valuable system for development and validation of GluN2B-modulating pharmaceutical agents. Keywords: Human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived neurons, iCell Neurons, iCell GlutaNeurons, NMDA receptors, GluN2B, Positive allosteric modulators

  5. Dual Function of Wnt Signaling during Neuronal Differentiation of Mouse Embryonic Stem Cells

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    Hanjun Kim

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Activation of Wnt signaling enhances self-renewal of mouse embryonic and neural stem/progenitor cells. In contrast, undifferentiated ES cells show a very low level of endogenous Wnt signaling, and ectopic activation of Wnt signaling has been shown to block neuronal differentiation. Therefore, it remains unclear whether or not endogenous Wnt/β-catenin signaling is necessary for self-renewal or neuronal differentiation of ES cells. To investigate this, we examined the expression profiles of Wnt signaling components. Expression levels of Wnts known to induce β-catenin were very low in undifferentiated ES cells. Stable ES cell lines which can monitor endogenous activity of Wnt/β-catenin signaling suggest that Wnt signaling was very low in undifferentiated ES cells, whereas it increased during embryonic body formation or neuronal differentiation. Interestingly, application of small molecules which can positively (BIO, GSK3β inhibitor or negatively (IWR-1-endo, Axin stabilizer control Wnt/β-catenin signaling suggests that activation of that signaling at different time periods had differential effects on neuronal differentiation of 46C ES cells. Further, ChIP analysis suggested that β-catenin/TCF1 complex directly regulated the expression of Sox1 during neuronal differentiation. Overall, our data suggest that Wnt/β-catenin signaling plays differential roles at different time points of neuronal differentiation.

  6. An old test for new neurons: refining the Morris water maze to study the functional relevance of adult hippocampal neurogenesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander eGarthe

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available The Morris water maze represents the de-facto standard for testing hippocampal function in laboratory rodents. In the field of adult hippocampal neurogenesis, however, using this paradigm to assess the functional relevance of the new neurons yielded surprisingly inconsistent results. While some authors found aspects of water maze performance to be linked to adult neurogenesis, others obtained different results or could not demonstrate any effect of manipulating adult neurogenesis.In this review we discuss evidence that the large diversity of protocols and setups used is an important aspect in interpreting the differences in the results that have been obtained. Even simple parameters such as pool size, number and configuration of visual landmarks, or number of trials can become highly relevant for getting the new neurons involved at all. Sets of parameters are often chosen with implicit or explicit concepts in mind and these might lead to different views on the function of adult-generated neurons.We propose that the classical parameters usually used to measure spatial learning performance in the water maze might not be particularly well suited to sensitively and specifically detect the supposedly highly specific functional changes elicited by the experimental modulation of adult hippocampal neurogenesis. As adult neurogenesis is supposed to affect specific aspects of information processing only in the hippocampus, any claim for a functional relevance of the new neurons has to be based on hippocampus-specific parameters. We also placed a special emphasis on the fact that the DG facilitates the differentiation between contexts as opposed to just differentiating places.In conclusion, while the Morris water maze has proven to be one of the most effective testing paradigms to assess hippocampus-dependent spatial learning, new and more specific questions ask for new parameters. Therefore, the full potential of the water maze task remains to be tapped.

  7. Notch is required in adult Drosophila sensory neurons for morphological and functional plasticity of the olfactory circuit.

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    Simon Kidd

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Olfactory receptor neurons (ORNs convey odor information to the central brain, but like other sensory neurons were thought to play a passive role in memory formation and storage. Here we show that Notch, part of an evolutionarily conserved intercellular signaling pathway, is required in adult Drosophila ORNs for the structural and functional plasticity of olfactory glomeruli that is induced by chronic odor exposure. Specifically, we show that Notch activity in ORNs is necessary for the odor specific increase in the volume of glomeruli that occurs as a consequence of prolonged odor exposure. Calcium imaging experiments indicate that Notch in ORNs is also required for the chronic odor induced changes in the physiology of ORNs and the ensuing changes in the physiological response of their second order projection neurons (PNs. We further show that Notch in ORNs acts by both canonical cleavage-dependent and non-canonical cleavage-independent pathways. The Notch ligand Delta (Dl in PNs switches the balance between the pathways. These data define a circuit whereby, in conjunction with odor, N activity in the periphery regulates the activity of neurons in the central brain and Dl in the central brain regulates N activity in the periphery. Our work highlights the importance of experience dependent plasticity at the first olfactory synapse.

  8. Large-scale functional RNAi screen in C. elegans identifies genes that regulate the dysfunction of mutant polyglutamine neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lejeune, François-Xavier; Mesrob, Lilia; Parmentier, Frédéric; Bicep, Cedric; Vazquez-Manrique, Rafael P; Parker, J Alex; Vert, Jean-Philippe; Tourette, Cendrine; Neri, Christian

    2012-03-13

    A central goal in Huntington's disease (HD) research is to identify and prioritize candidate targets for neuroprotective intervention, which requires genome-scale information on the modifiers of early-stage neuron injury in HD. Here, we performed a large-scale RNA interference screen in C. elegans strains that express N-terminal huntingtin (htt) in touch receptor neurons. These neurons control the response to light touch. Their function is strongly impaired by expanded polyglutamines (128Q) as shown by the nearly complete loss of touch response in adult animals, providing an in vivo model in which to manipulate the early phases of expanded-polyQ neurotoxicity. In total, 6034 genes were examined, revealing 662 gene inactivations that either reduce or aggravate defective touch response in 128Q animals. Several genes were previously implicated in HD or neurodegenerative disease, suggesting that this screen has effectively identified candidate targets for HD. Network-based analysis emphasized a subset of high-confidence modifier genes in pathways of interest in HD including metabolic, neurodevelopmental and pro-survival pathways. Finally, 49 modifiers of 128Q-neuron dysfunction that are dysregulated in the striatum of either R/2 or CHL2 HD mice, or both, were identified. Collectively, these results highlight the relevance to HD pathogenesis, providing novel information on the potential therapeutic targets for neuroprotection in HD. © 2012 Lejeune et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

  9. Ginseng Rb fraction protects glia, neurons and cognitive function in a rat model of neurodegeneration.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kangning Xu

    Full Text Available The loss and injury of neurons play an important role in the onset of various neurodegenerative diseases, while both microgliosis and astrocyte loss or dysfunction are significant causes of neuronal degeneration. Previous studies have suggested that an extract enriched panaxadiol saponins from ginseng has more neuroprotective potential than the total saponins of ginseng. The present study investigated whether a fraction of highly purified panaxadiol saponins (termed as Rb fraction was protective for both glia and neurons, especially GABAergic interneurons, against kainic acid (KA-induced excitotoxicity in rats. Rats received Rb fraction at 30 mg/kg (i.p., 40 mg/kg (i.p. or saline followed 40 min later by an intracerebroventricular injection of KA. Acute hippocampal injury was determined at 48 h after KA, and impairment of hippocampus-dependent learning and memory as well as delayed neuronal injury was determined 16 to 21 days later. KA injection produced significant acute hippocampal injuries, including GAD67-positive GABAergic interneuron loss in CA1, paralbumin (PV-positive GABAergic interneuron loss, pyramidal neuron degeneration and astrocyte damage accompanied with reactive microglia in both CA1 and CA3 regions of the hippocampus. There was also a delayed loss of GAD67-positive interneurons in CA1, CA3, hilus and dentate gyrus. Microgliosis also became more severe 21 days later. Accordingly, KA injection resulted in hippocampus-dependent spatial memory impairment. Interestingly, the pretreatment with Rb fraction at 30 or 40 mg/kg significantly protected the pyramidal neurons and GABAergic interneurons against KA-induced acute excitotoxicity and delayed injury. Rb fraction also prevented memory impairments and protected astrocytes from KA-induced acute excitotoxicity. Additionally, microglial activation, especially the delayed microgliosis, was inhibited by Rb fraction. Overall, this study demonstrated that Rb fraction protected both

  10. Menthol Enhances Nicotine Reward-Related Behavior by Potentiating Nicotine-Induced Changes in nAChR Function, nAChR Upregulation, and DA Neuron Excitability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Henderson, Brandon J; Wall, Teagan R; Henley, Beverley M; Kim, Charlene H; McKinney, Sheri; Lester, Henry A

    2017-11-01

    Understanding why the quit rate among smokers of menthol cigarettes is lower than non-menthol smokers requires identifying the neurons that are altered by nicotine, menthol, and acetylcholine. Dopaminergic (DA) neurons in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) mediate the positive reinforcing effects of nicotine. Using mouse models, we show that menthol enhances nicotine-induced changes in nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) expressed on midbrain DA neurons. Menthol plus nicotine upregulates nAChR number and function on midbrain DA neurons more than nicotine alone. Menthol also enhances nicotine-induced changes in DA neuron excitability. In a conditioned place preference (CPP) assay, we observed that menthol plus nicotine produces greater reward-related behavior than nicotine alone. Our results connect changes in midbrain DA neurons to menthol-induced enhancements of nicotine reward-related behavior and may help explain how smokers of menthol cigarettes exhibit reduced cessation rates.

  11. Deep-brain electrical microstimulation is an effective tool to explore functional characteristics of somatosensory neurons in the rat brain.

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    Han-Jia Jiang

    Full Text Available In neurophysiology researches, peripheral stimulation is used along with recordings of neural activities to study the processing of somatosensory signals in the brain. However, limited precision of peripheral stimulation makes it difficult to activate the neuron with millisecond resolution and study its functional properties in this scale. Also, tissue/receptor damage that could occur in some experiments often limits the amount of responses that can be recorded and hence reduces data reproducibility. To overcome these limitations, electrical microstimulation (ES of the brain could be used to directly and more precisely evoke neural responses. For this purpose, a deep-brain ES protocol for rat somatosensory relay neurons was developed in this study. Three male Wistar rats were used in the experiment. The ES was applied to the thalamic region responsive to hindpaw tactile stimulation (TS via a theta glass microelectrode. The resulting ES-evoked cortical responses showed action potentials and thalamocortical relay latencies very similar to those evoked by TS. This result shows that the developed deep-brain ES protocol is an effective tool to bypass peripheral tissue for in vivo functional analysis of specific types of somatosensory neurons. This protocol could be readily applied in researches of nociception and other somatosensory systems to allow more extensive exploration of the neural functional networks.

  12. Neural plasticity in hypocretin neurons: the basis of hypocretinergic regulation of physiological and behavioral functions in animals

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    Xiao-Bing eGao

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available The neuronal system that resides in the perifornical and lateral hypothalamus (Pf/LH and synthesizes the neuropeptide hypocretin/orexin participates in critical brain functions across species from fish to human. The hypocretin system regulates neural activity responsible for daily functions (such as sleep/wake homeostasis, energy balance, appetite, etc and long-term behavioral changes (such as reward seeking and addiction, stress response, etc in animals. The most recent evidence suggests that the hypocretin system undergoes substantial plastic changes in response to both daily fluctuations (such as food intake and sleep-wake regulation and long-term changes (such as cocaine seeking in neuronal activity in the brain. The understanding of these changes in the hypocretin system is essential in addressing the role of the hypocretin system in normal physiological functions and pathological conditions in animals and humans. In this review, the evidence demonstrating that neural plasticity occurs in hypocretin-containing neurons in the Pf/LH will be presented and possible physiological behavioral, and mental health implications of these findings will be discussed.

  13. Neural plasticity in hypocretin neurons: the basis of hypocretinergic regulation of physiological and behavioral functions in animals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Xiao-Bing; Hermes, Gretchen

    2015-01-01

    The neuronal system that resides in the perifornical and lateral hypothalamus (Pf/LH) and synthesizes the neuropeptide hypocretin/orexin participates in critical brain functions across species from fish to human. The hypocretin system regulates neural activity responsible for daily functions (such as sleep/wake homeostasis, energy balance, appetite, etc.) and long-term behavioral changes (such as reward seeking and addiction, stress response, etc.) in animals. The most recent evidence suggests that the hypocretin system undergoes substantial plastic changes in response to both daily fluctuations (such as food intake and sleep-wake regulation) and long-term changes (such as cocaine seeking) in neuronal activity in the brain. The understanding of these changes in the hypocretin system is essential in addressing the role of the hypocretin system in normal physiological functions and pathological conditions in animals and humans. In this review, the evidence demonstrating that neural plasticity occurs in hypocretin-containing neurons in the Pf/LH will be presented and possible physiological, behavioral, and mental health implications of these findings will be discussed. PMID:26539086

  14. Functional wiring of hypocretin and LC-NE neurons: implications for arousal.

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    Matthew E Carter

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available To survive in a rapidly changing environment, animals must sense their external world and internal physiological state and properly regulate levels of arousal. Levels of arousal that are abnormally high may result in inefficient use of internal energy stores and unfocused attention to salient environmental stimuli. Alternatively, levels of arousal that are abnormally low may result in the inability to properly seek food, water, sexual partners, and other factors necessary for life. In the brain, neurons that express hypocretin neuropeptides may be uniquely posed to sense the external and internal state of the animal and tune arousal state according to behavioral needs. In recent years, we have applied temporally precise optogenetic techniques to study the role of these neurons and their downstream connections in regulating arousal. In particular, we have found that noradrenergic neurons in the brainstem locus coeruleus are particularly important for mediating the effects of hypocretin neurons on arousal. Here, we discuss our recent results and consider the implications of the anatomical connectivity of these neurons in regulating the arousal state of an organism across various states of sleep and wakefulness.

  15. Naringin Improves Neuronal Insulin Signaling, Brain Mitochondrial Function, and Cognitive Function in High-Fat Diet-Induced Obese Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Dongmei; Yan, Junqiang; Chen, Jing; Wu, Wenlan; Zhu, Xiaoying; Wang, Yong

    2015-10-01

    The epidemic and experimental studies have confirmed that the obesity induced by high-fat diet not only caused neuronal insulin resistance, but also induced brain mitochondrial dysfunction as well as learning impairment in mice. Naringin has been reported to posses biological functions which are beneficial to human cognitions, but its protective effects on HFD-induced cognitive deficits and underlying mechanisms have not been well characterized. In the present study Male C57BL/6 J mice were fed either a control or high-fat diet for 20 weeks and then randomized into four groups treated with their respective diets including control diet, control diet + naringin, high-fat diet (HFD), and high-fat diet + naringin (HFDN). The behavioral performance was assessed by using novel object recognition test and Morris water maze test. Hippocampal mitochondrial parameters were analyzed. Then the protein levels of insulin signaling pathway and the AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) in the hippocampus were detected by Western blot method. Our results showed that oral administration of naringin significantly improved the learning and memory abilities as evidenced by increasing recognition index by 52.5% in the novel object recognition test and inducing a 1.05-fold increase in the crossing-target number in the probe test, and ameliorated mitochondrial dysfunction in mice caused by HFD consumption. Moreover, naringin significantly enhanced insulin signaling pathway as indicated by a 34.5% increase in the expression levels of IRS-1, a 47.8% decrease in the p-IRS-1, a 1.43-fold increase in the p-Akt, and a 1.89-fold increase in the p-GSK-3β in the hippocampus of the HFDN mice versus HFD mice. Furthermore, the AMPK activity significantly increased in the naringin-treated (100 mg kg(-1) d(-1)) group. These findings suggest that an enhancement in insulin signaling and a decrease in mitochondrial dysfunction through the activation of AMPK may be one of the mechanisms that naringin

  16. Functional neuronal processing of body odors differs from that of similar common odors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lundström, Johan N; Boyle, Julie A; Zatorre, Robert J; Jones-Gotman, Marilyn

    2008-06-01

    Visual and auditory stimuli of high social and ecological importance are processed in the brain by specialized neuronal networks. To date, this has not been demonstrated for olfactory stimuli. By means of positron emission tomography, we sought to elucidate the neuronal substrates behind body odor perception to answer the question of whether the central processing of body odors differs from perceptually similar nonbody odors. Body odors were processed by a network that was distinctly separate from common odors, indicating a separation in the processing of odors based on their source. Smelling a friend's body odor activated regions previously seen for familiar stimuli, whereas smelling a stranger activated amygdala and insular regions akin to what has previously been demonstrated for fearful stimuli. The results provide evidence that social olfactory stimuli of high ecological relevance are processed by specialized neuronal networks similar to what has previously been demonstrated for auditory and visual stimuli.

  17. Drosophila Clock Is Required in Brain Pacemaker Neurons to Prevent Premature Locomotor Aging Independently of Its Circadian Function.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandra Vaccaro

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Circadian clocks control many self-sustained rhythms in physiology and behavior with approximately 24-hour periodicity. In many organisms, oxidative stress and aging negatively impact the circadian system and sleep. Conversely, loss of the clock decreases resistance to oxidative stress, and may reduce lifespan and speed up brain aging and neurodegeneration. Here we examined the effects of clock disruptions on locomotor aging and longevity in Drosophila. We found that lifespan was similarly reduced in three arrhythmic mutants (ClkAR, cyc0 and tim0 and in wild-type flies under constant light, which stops the clock. In contrast, ClkAR mutants showed significantly faster age-related locomotor deficits (as monitored by startle-induced climbing than cyc0 and tim0, or than control flies under constant light. Reactive oxygen species accumulated more with age in ClkAR mutant brains, but this did not appear to contribute to the accelerated locomotor decline of the mutant. Clk, but not Cyc, inactivation by RNA interference in the pigment-dispersing factor (PDF-expressing central pacemaker neurons led to similar loss of climbing performance as ClkAR. Conversely, restoring Clk function in these cells was sufficient to rescue the ClkAR locomotor phenotype, independently of behavioral rhythmicity. Accelerated locomotor decline of the ClkAR mutant required expression of the PDF receptor and correlated to an apparent loss of dopaminergic neurons in the posterior protocerebral lateral 1 (PPL1 clusters. This neuronal loss was rescued when the ClkAR mutation was placed in an apoptosis-deficient background. Impairing dopamine synthesis in a single pair of PPL1 neurons that innervate the mushroom bodies accelerated locomotor decline in otherwise wild-type flies. Our results therefore reveal a novel circadian-independent requirement for Clk in brain circadian neurons to maintain a subset of dopaminergic cells and avoid premature locomotor aging in Drosophila.

  18. [Changes in ingestive behavior during growth affects the functional maturation of temporomandibular joint nociceptive neurons of rats].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hiranuma, Maya

    2013-03-01

    Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) loading during development promotes its growth and maintains normal structure/function. Continuous change in diet consistency is related to development and maturation of the peripheral nervous system, including the nociceptive system. However, the functional modulation of TMJ-nociceptive neurons under different ingestive behavior is unclear. We fed growing rats a liquid diet to investigate the effects of low TMJ loading on the response properties of neurons in the trigeminal spinal tract subnucleus caudalis (Sp5C). Forty 2-week-old male rats were used. They were fed chow pellets (n = 20, C group) or a liquid diet (n = 20, LD group) soon after weaning. Firing activities of single sensory units in response to TMJ pressure stimuli were recorded at 4, 5, 7 and 9 weeks. In TMJ-nociceptive neurons, the firing threshold (FT) in the LD group was significantly lower than that in the C group at each recording age. The FT in the C group remained unchanged throughout the recording period, whereas that in the LD group was the highest at 4 weeks, and gradually decreased. On the other hand, the initial firing frequency (IFF) was significantly higher in the LD group than in the C group at each recording age. The IFF in the C group remained unchanged throughout the experimental period, whereas that in the LD group was at its lowest at 4 weeks, and gradually increased. Based on these findings, ingestive behavior that results from continuous changes in the physical consistency of the diet during growth may affect the functional maturation of TMJ-nociceptive neurons.

  19. Impact of exercise rehabilitation on cardiac neuronal function in heart failure. An iodine-123 metaiodobenzylguanidine scintigraphy study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Agostini, D.; Bouvard, G.; Lecluse, E.; Grollier, G.; Potier, J.C.; Belin, A.; Babatasi, G.; Amar, M.H.

    1998-01-01

    Exercise training can induce important haemodynamic and metabolic adaptations in patients with chronic heart failure due to severe left ventricular dysfunction. This study examined the impact of exercise rehabilitation on cardiac neuronal function using iodine-123 metaiobodenzylguanidine (MIBG) scintigraphy. Fourteen patients (11 men, 3 women; mean age 48 years; range: 36-66 years) with stable chronic heart failure of NYHA class II-III and an initial resting radionuclide left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) 123 I-MIBG scintigraphy provided measurements of cardiac neuronal uptake (heart-mediastinum ratio activity, 4 h after intravenous injection of 185 MBq of MIBG). Radionuclide LVEF was also assessed at the outset and after 6 months of exercise training. Workload (801±428 vs 1229±245 kpm.min -1 , P=0.001), exercise duration (504±190 vs 649±125 s, P=0.02), and myocardial MIBG uptake (135%±19% vs 156%±25%, P=0.02) increased significantly after rehabilitation. However, LVEF did not change significantly (23%±9% vs 21%±10%, p=NS). It is concluded that exercise rehabilitation induces improvement of cardiac neuronal function without having negative effects on cardiac contractility in patients with stable chronic heart failure. (orig.)

  20. Metaiodobenzylguanidine [131I] scintigraphy detects impaired myocardial sympathetic neuronal transport function of canine mechanical-overload heart failure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rabinovitch, M.A.; Rose, C.P.; Rouleau, J.L.

    1987-01-01

    In heart failure secondary to chronic mechanical overload, cardiac sympathetic neurons demonstrate depressed catecholamine synthetic and transport function. To assess the potential of sympathetic neuronal imaging for detection of depressed transport function, serial scintigrams were acquired after the intravenous administration of metaiodobenzylguanidine [ 131 I] to 13 normal dogs, 3 autotransplanted (denervated) dogs, 5 dogs with left ventricular failure, and 5 dogs with compensated left ventricular hypertrophy due to a surgical arteriovenous shunt. Nine dogs were killed at 14 hours postinjection for determination of metaiodobenzylguanidine [ 131 I] and endogenous norepinephrine content in left atrium, left ventricle, liver, and spleen. By 4 hours postinjection, autotransplanted dogs had a 39% reduction in mean left ventricular tracer accumulation, reflecting an absent intraneuronal tracer pool. Failure dogs demonstrated an accelerated early mean left ventricular tracer efflux rate (26.0%/hour versus 13.7%/hour in normals), reflecting a disproportionately increased extraneuronal tracer pool. They also showed reduced late left ventricular and left atrial concentrations of tracer, consistent with a reduced intraneuronal tracer pool. By contrast, compensated hypertrophy dogs demonstrated a normal early mean left ventricular tracer efflux rate (16.4%/hour) and essentially normal late left ventricular and left atrial concentrations of tracer. Metaiodobenzylguanidine [ 131 I] scintigraphic findings reflect the integrity of the cardiac sympathetic neuronal transport system in canine mechanical-overload heart failure. Metaiodobenzylguanidine [ 123 I] scintigraphy should be explored as a means of early detection of mechanical-overload heart failure in patients

  1. Impact of exercise rehabilitation on cardiac neuronal function in heart failure. An iodine-123 metaiodobenzylguanidine scintigraphy study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Agostini, D.; Bouvard, G. [Service de Medecine Nucleaire, CHU Cote de Nacre, Caen (France); Lecluse, E.; Grollier, G.; Potier, J.C. [Service de Cardiologie, CHU Cote de Nacre, Caen (France); Belin, A. [Service de Readaptation Cardiaque, CHU Cote de Nacre, Caen (France); Babatasi, G. [Service de Chirurgie Cardio-Thoracique, CHU Cote de Nacre, Caen (France); Amar, M.H. [Centre Francois Baclesse, Caen (France). Service de Recherche Clinique

    1998-03-01

    Exercise training can induce important haemodynamic and metabolic adaptations in patients with chronic heart failure due to severe left ventricular dysfunction. This study examined the impact of exercise rehabilitation on cardiac neuronal function using iodine-123 metaiobodenzylguanidine (MIBG) scintigraphy. Fourteen patients (11 men, 3 women; mean age 48 years; range: 36-66 years) with stable chronic heart failure of NYHA class II-III and an initial resting radionuclide left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) <50% were enrolled in the study. Patients underwent progressive, supervised endurance training (treadmill test, Bruce protocol) during a 6-month period (60 sessions, 3 sessions per week) at a cardiac rehabilitation referral centre in order to measure exercise parameters. Planar {sup 123}I-MIBG scintigraphy provided measurements of cardiac neuronal uptake (heart-mediastinum ratio activity, 4 h after intravenous injection of 185 MBq of MIBG). Radionuclide LVEF was also assessed at the outset and after 6 months of exercise training. Workload (801{+-}428 vs 1229{+-}245 kpm.min{sup -1}, P=0.001), exercise duration (504{+-}190 vs 649{+-}125 s, P=0.02), and myocardial MIBG uptake (135%{+-}19% vs 156%{+-}25%, P=0.02) increased significantly after rehabilitation. However, LVEF did not change significantly (23%{+-}9% vs 21%{+-}10%, p=NS). It is concluded that exercise rehabilitation induces improvement of cardiac neuronal function without having negative effects on cardiac contractility in patients with stable chronic heart failure. (orig.)

  2. The effects of functional magnetic nanotubes with incorporated nerve growth factor in neuronal differentiation of PC12 cells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xie Jining; Chen Linfeng; Varadan, Vijay K; Yancey, Justin; Srivatsan, Malathi

    2008-01-01

    In this in vitro study the efficiency of magnetic nanotubes to bind with nerve growth factor (NGF) and the ability of NGF-incorporated magnetic nanotubes to release the bound NGF are investigated using rat pheochromocytoma cells (PC12 cells). It is found that functional magnetic nanotubes with NGF incorporation enabled the differentiation of PC12 cells into neurons exhibiting growth cones and neurite outgrowth. Microscope observations show that filopodia extending from neuron growth cones were in close proximity to the NGF-incorporated magnetic nanotubes, at times appearing to extend towards or into them. These results show that magnetic nanotubes can be used as a delivery vehicle for NGF and thus may be exploited in attempts to treat neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson's disease with neurotrophins. Further neurite outgrowth can be controlled by manipulating magnetic nanotubes with external magnetic fields, thus helping in directed regeneration

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Das, S. (Suman); P.J. Holland (Peter); M.A. Frens (Maarten); O. Donchin (Opher)

    2016-01-01

    textabstractTranscranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), a non-invasive 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

  4. Drosophila Atlastin in motor neurons is required for locomotion and presynaptic function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Gregorio, Cristian; Delgado, Ricardo; Ibacache, Andrés; Sierralta, Jimena; Couve, Andrés

    2017-10-15

    Hereditary spastic paraplegias (HSPs) are characterized by spasticity and weakness of the lower limbs, resulting from length-dependent axonopathy of the corticospinal tracts. In humans, the HSP-related atlastin genes ATL1 - ATL3 catalyze homotypic membrane fusion of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) tubules. How defects in neuronal Atlastin contribute to axonal degeneration has not been explained satisfactorily. Using Drosophila , we demonstrate that downregulation or overexpression of Atlastin in motor neurons results in decreased crawling speed and contraction frequency in larvae, while adult flies show progressive decline in climbing ability. Broad expression in the nervous system is required to rescue the atlastin -null Drosophila mutant ( atl 2 ) phenotype. Importantly, both spontaneous release and the reserve pool of synaptic vesicles are affected. Additionally, axonal secretory organelles are abnormally distributed, whereas presynaptic proteins diminish at terminals and accumulate in distal axons, possibly in lysosomes. Our findings suggest that trafficking defects produced by Atlastin dysfunction in motor neurons result in redistribution of presynaptic components and aberrant mobilization of synaptic vesicles, stressing the importance of ER-shaping proteins and the susceptibility of motor neurons to their mutations or depletion. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  5. Contextual Learning Requires Functional Diversity at Excitatory and Inhibitory Synapses onto CA1 Pyramidal Neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dai Mitsushima

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Although the hippocampus is processing temporal and spatial information in particular context, the encoding rule creating memory is completely unknown. To examine the mechanism, we trained rats on an inhibitory avoidance (IA task, a hippocampus-dependent rapid one-trial contextual learning paradigm. By combining Herpes virus-mediated in vivo gene delivery with in vitro patch-clamp recordings, I reported contextual learning drives GluR1-containing AMPA receptors into CA3-CA1 synapses. The molecular event is required for contextual memory, since bilateral expression of delivery blocker in CA1 successfully blocked IA learning. Moreover, I found a logarithmic correlation between the number of delivery blocking cells and learning performance. Considering that one all-or-none device can process 1-bit of data per clock (Nobert Wiener 1961, the logarithmic correlation may provides evidence that CA1 neurons transmit essential data of contextual information. Further, I recently reported critical role of acetylcholine as an intrinsic trigger of learning-dependent synaptic plasticity. IA training induced ACh release in CA1 that strengthened not only AMPA receptor-mediated excitatory synapses, but also GABAA receptor-mediated inhibitory synapses on each CA1 neuron. More importantly, IA-trained rats showed individually different excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs with wide variation on each CA1 neuron. Here I propose a new hypothesis that the diversity of synaptic inputs on CA1 neurons may depict cell-specific outputs processing experienced episodes after training.

  6. Progranulin functions as a neurotrophic factor to regulate neurite outgrowth and enhance neuronal survival

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    P. van Damme (Damme); A. van Hoecke (Annelies); D. Lambrechts (Diether); P. Vanacker (Peter); E. Bogaert (Elke); J.C. van Swieten (John); P. Carmeliet (Peter); L. van den Bosch (Ludo); W. Robberecht (Wim)

    2008-01-01

    textabstractRecently, mutations in the progranulin (PGRN) gene were found to cause familial and apparently sporadic frontotemporal lobe dementia (FTLD). Moreover, missense changes in PGRN were identified in patients with motor neuron degeneration, a condition that is related to FTLD. Most mutations

  7. Functional imaging of stimulus convergence in amygdalar neurons during Pavlovian fear conditioning.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sabiha K Barot

    2009-07-01

    Full Text Available Associative conditioning is a ubiquitous form of learning throughout the animal kingdom and fear conditioning is one of the most widely researched models for studying its neurobiological basis. Fear conditioning is also considered a model system for understanding phobias and anxiety disorders. A fundamental issue in fear conditioning regards the existence and location of neurons in the brain that receive convergent information about the conditioned stimulus (CS and unconditioned stimulus (US during the acquisition of conditioned fear memory. Convergent activation of neurons is generally viewed as a key event for fear learning, yet there has been almost no direct evidence of this critical event in the mammalian brain.Here, we used Arc cellular compartmental analysis of temporal gene transcription by fluorescence in situ hybridization (catFISH to identify neurons activated during single trial contextual fear conditioning in rats. To conform to temporal requirements of catFISH analysis we used a novel delayed contextual fear conditioning protocol which yields significant single- trial fear conditioning with temporal parameters amenable to catFISH analysis. Analysis yielded clear evidence that a population of BLA neurons receives convergent CS and US information at the time of the learning, that this only occurs when the CS-US arrangement is supportive of the learning, and that this process requires N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor activation. In contrast, CS-US convergence was not observed in dorsal hippocampus.Based on the pattern of Arc activation seen in conditioning and control groups, we propose that a key requirement for CS-US convergence onto BLA neurons is the potentiation of US responding by prior exposure to a novel CS. Our results also support the view that contextual fear memories are encoded in the amygdala and that the role of dorsal hippocampus is to process and transmit contextual CS information.

  8. Organization of rat neuronal DNA as a function of dose, time after irradiation and age

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jaberaboansari, A.

    1989-01-01

    The organization of DNA and chromatin structure were examined in male Fisher 344 rat cerebellar neurons at various times from < 5 min to 2 years after exposure to ionizing radiation. Immediately after irradiation, the organization of neuronal DNA was altered. First, the DNA superhelical structure was changed due to removal of the topological constraints on the supercoiled DNA loops. Secondly, the accessibility of bulk neuronal DNA to digestion by micrococcal nuclease was increased. This increase in the m. nuclease sensitivity of bulk DNA did not depend on the oxygen concentration during irradiation. Thirdly, the accessibility of the nuclear matrix-associated DNA to digestion by DNase I was decreased. This decrease was most likely caused by masking the DNA with additional nuclear matrix-associated proteins. This increase in protein content was independent of oxygen, but inhibited if irradiations were performed at 4 degree C. The kinetics were consistent with the saturation kinetics observed for DNA repair in cerebellar neurons. Thus, these proteins may be associated with repair of radiation-induced DNA damage. The neuronal DNA/chromatin structure was restored to its unirradiated state by 24 hr after irradiation with biphasic kinetics having half-times similar to those reported for repair of radiation-induced DNA damage. However, the evidence suggested that residual DNA damage occurred in aging rats that had received a relatively high radiation dose at 4 months of age. In those rats, there was: (a) a decrease in the total nuclear protein content with age, (b) an increase in the digestibility of bulk DNA by m. nuclease with age, and (c) a reduction in the amount of nuclear matrix-associated proteins that persisted with age

  9. Streptozotocin alters glucose transport, connexin expression and endoplasmic reticulum functions in neurons and astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biswas, Joyshree; Gupta, Sonam; Verma, Dinesh Kumar; Singh, Sarika

    2017-07-25

    The study was undertaken to explore the cell-specific streptozotocin (STZ)-induced mechanistic alterations. STZ-induced rodent model is a well-established experimental model of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and in our previous studies we have established it as an in vitro screening model of AD by employing N2A neuronal cells. Therefore, STZ was selected in the present study to understand the STZ-induced cell-specific alterations by utilizing neuronal N2A and astrocytes C6 cells. Both neuronal and astrocyte cells were treated with STZ at 10, 50, 100 and 1000μM concentrations for 48h. STZ exposure caused significant decline in cellular viability and augmented cytotoxicity of cells involving astrocytes activation. STZ treatment also disrupted the energy metabolism by altered glucose uptake and its transport in both cells as reflected with decreased expression of glucose transporters (GLUT) 1/3. The consequent decrease in ATP level and decreased mitochondrial membrane potential was also observed in both the cells. STZ caused increased intracellular calcium which could cause the initiation of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress. Significant upregulation of ER stress-related markers were observed in both cells after STZ treatment. The cellular communication of astrocytes and neurons was altered as reflected by increased expression of connexin 43 along with DNA fragmentation. STZ-induced apoptotic death was evaluated by elevated expression of caspase-3 and PI/Hoechst staining of cells. In conclusion, study showed that STZ exert alike biochemical alterations, ER stress and cellular apoptosis in both neuronal and astrocyte cells. Copyright © 2017 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Distribution and morphology of nitridergic neurons across functional domains of the rat primary somatosensory cortex

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anaelli A Nogueira-Campos

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available The rat primary somatosensory cortex (S1 is remarkable for its conspicuous vertical compartmentalization in barrels and septal columns, which are additionally stratified in horizontal layers. Whereas excitatory neurons from each of these compartments perform different types of processing, the role of interneurons is much less clear. Among the numerous types of GABAergic interneurons, those producing nitric oxide (NO are especially puzzling, since this gaseous messenger can modulate neural activity, synaptic plasticity and neurovascular coupling. We used a quantitative morphological approach to investigate whether nitrergic interneurons, which might therefore be considered both as NO volume diffusers and as elements of local circuitry, display features that could relate to barrel cortex architecture. In fixed brain sections, nitrergic interneurons can be revealed by histochemical processing for NADPH-diaphorase (NADPHd. Here, the dendritic arbors of nitrergic neurons from different compartments of area S1 were 3D reconstructed from serial 200-μm thick sections, using 100x objective and the Neurolucida system. Standard morphological parameters were extracted for all individual arbors and compared across columns and layers. Wedge analysis was used to compute dendritic orientation indices. Supragranular layers displayed the highest density of nitrergic neurons, whereas layer IV contained nitrergic neurons with largest soma area. The highest nitrergic neuronal density was found in septa, where dendrites were previously characterized as more extense and ramified than in barrels. Dendritic arbors were not confined to the boundaries of the column nor layer of their respective soma, being mostly double-tufted and vertically oriented, except in supragranular layers. These data strongly suggest that nitrergic interneurons adapt their morphology to the dynamics of processing performed by cortical compartments.

  11. Kappe neurons, a novel population of olfactory sensory neurons

    OpenAIRE

    Ahuja, Gaurav; Nia, Shahrzad Bozorg; Zapilko, Veronika; Shiriagin, Vladimir; Kowatschew, Daniel; Oka, Yuichiro; Korsching, Sigrun I.

    2014-01-01

    Perception of olfactory stimuli is mediated by distinct populations of olfactory sensory neurons, each with a characteristic set of morphological as well as functional parameters. Beyond two large populations of ciliated and microvillous neurons, a third population, crypt neurons, has been identified in teleost and cartilaginous fishes. We report here a novel, fourth olfactory sensory neuron population in zebrafish, which we named kappe neurons for their characteristic shape. Kappe neurons ar...

  12. PROS-1/Prospero Is a Major Regulator of the Glia-Specific Secretome Controlling Sensory-Neuron Shape and Function in C. elegans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wallace, Sean W; Singhvi, Aakanksha; Liang, Yupu; Lu, Yun; Shaham, Shai

    2016-04-19

    Sensory neurons are an animal's gateway to the world, and their receptive endings, the sites of sensory signal transduction, are often associated with glia. Although glia are known to promote sensory-neuron functions, the molecular bases of these interactions are poorly explored. Here, we describe a post-developmental glial role for the PROS-1/Prospero/PROX1 homeodomain protein in sensory-neuron function in C. elegans. Using glia expression profiling, we demonstrate that, unlike previously characterized cell fate roles, PROS-1 functions post-embryonically to control sense-organ glia-specific secretome expression. PROS-1 functions cell autonomously to regulate glial secretion and membrane structure, and non-cell autonomously to control the shape and function of the receptive endings of sensory neurons. Known glial genes controlling sensory-neuron function are PROS-1 targets, and we identify additional PROS-1-dependent genes required for neuron attributes. Drosophila Prospero and vertebrate PROX1 are expressed in post-mitotic sense-organ glia and astrocytes, suggesting conserved roles for this class of transcription factors. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Structural and functional deficits in a neuronal calcium sensor-1 mutant identified in a case of autistic spectrum disorder.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark T W Handley

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Neuronal calcium sensor-1 (NCS-1 is a Ca(2+ sensor protein that has been implicated in the regulation of various aspects of neuronal development and neurotransmission. It exerts its effects through interactions with a range of target proteins one of which is interleukin receptor accessory protein like-1 (IL1RAPL1 protein. Mutations in IL1RAPL1 have recently been associated with autism spectrum disorders and a missense mutation (R102Q on NCS-1 has been found in one individual with autism. We have examined the effect of this mutation on the structure and function of NCS-1. From use of NMR spectroscopy, it appeared that the R102Q affected the structure of the protein particularly with an increase in the extent of conformational exchange in the C-terminus of the protein. Despite this change NCS-1(R102Q did not show changes in its affinity for Ca(2+ or binding to IL1RAPL1 and its intracellular localisation was unaffected. Assessment of NCS-1 dynamics indicated that it could rapidly cycle between cytosolic and membrane pools and that the cycling onto the plasma membrane was specifically changed in NCS-1(R102Q with the loss of a Ca(2+ -dependent component. From these data we speculate that impairment of the normal cycling of NCS-1 by the R102Q mutation could have subtle effects on neuronal signalling and physiology in the developing and adult brain.

  14. Allotransplanted DRG neurons or Schwann cells affect functional recovery in a rodent model of sciatic nerve injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dayawansa, Samantha; Wang, Ernest W; Liu, Weimin; Markman, John D; Gelbard, Harris A; Huang, Jason H

    2014-11-01

    In this study, the functional recoveries of Sprague-Dawley rats following repair of a complete sciatic nerve transection using allotransplanted dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons or Schwann cells were examined using a number of outcome measures. Four groups were compared: (1) repair with a nerve guide conduit seeded with allotransplanted Schwann cells harvested from Wistar rats, (2) repair with a nerve guide conduit seeded with DRG neurons, (3) repair with solely a nerve guide conduit, and (4) sham-surgery animals where the sciatic nerve was left intact. The results corroborated our previous reported histology findings and measures of immunogenicity. The Wistar-DRG-treated group achieved the best recovery, significantly outperforming both the Wistar-Schwann group and the nerve guide conduit group in the Von Frey assay of touch response (P DRG and Wistar-Schwann seeded repairs showed lower frequency and severity in an autotomy measure of the self-mutilation of the injured leg because of neuralgia. These results suggest that in complete peripheral nerve transections, surgical repair using nerve guide conduits with allotransplanted DRG and Schwann cells may improve recovery, especially DRG neurons, which elicit less of an immune response.

  15. Ablation of RIC8A function in mouse neurons leads to a severe neuromuscular phenotype and postnatal death.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katrin Ruisu

    Full Text Available Resistance to inhibitors of cholinesterase 8 (RIC8 is a guanine nucleotide exchange factor required for the intracellular regulation of G protein signalling. RIC8 activates different Gα subunits via non-canonical pathway, thereby amplifying and prolonging the G protein mediated signal. In order to circumvent the embryonic lethality associated with the absence of RIC8A and to study its role in the nervous system, we constructed Ric8a conditional knockout mice using Cre/loxP technology. Introduction of a synapsin I promoter driven Cre transgenic mouse strain (SynCre into the floxed Ric8a (Ric8a (F/F background ablated RIC8A function in most differentiated neuron populations. Mutant SynCre (+/- Ric8 (lacZ/F mice were born at expected Mendelian ratio, but they died in early postnatal age (P4-P6. The mutants exhibited major developmental defects, like growth retardation and muscular weakness, impaired coordination and balance, muscular spasms and abnormal heart beat. Histological analysis revealed that the deficiency of RIC8A in neurons caused skeletal muscle atrophy and heart muscle hypoplasia, in addition, the sinoatrial node was misplaced and its size reduced. However, we did not observe gross morphological changes in brains of SynCre (+/- Ric8a (lacZ/F mutants. Our results demonstrate that in mice the activity of RIC8A in neurons is essential for survival and its deficiency causes a severe neuromuscular phenotype.

  16. Ablation of RIC8A function in mouse neurons leads to a severe neuromuscular phenotype and postnatal death.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruisu, Katrin; Kask, Keiu; Meier, Riho; Saare, Merly; Raid, Raivo; Veraksitš, Alar; Karis, Alar; Tõnissoo, Tambet; Pooga, Margus

    2013-01-01

    Resistance to inhibitors of cholinesterase 8 (RIC8) is a guanine nucleotide exchange factor required for the intracellular regulation of G protein signalling. RIC8 activates different Gα subunits via non-canonical pathway, thereby amplifying and prolonging the G protein mediated signal. In order to circumvent the embryonic lethality associated with the absence of RIC8A and to study its role in the nervous system, we constructed Ric8a conditional knockout mice using Cre/loxP technology. Introduction of a synapsin I promoter driven Cre transgenic mouse strain (SynCre) into the floxed Ric8a (Ric8a (F/F) ) background ablated RIC8A function in most differentiated neuron populations. Mutant SynCre (+/-) Ric8 (lacZ/F) mice were born at expected Mendelian ratio, but they died in early postnatal age (P4-P6). The mutants exhibited major developmental defects, like growth retardation and muscular weakness, impaired coordination and balance, muscular spasms and abnormal heart beat. Histological analysis revealed that the deficiency of RIC8A in neurons caused skeletal muscle atrophy and heart muscle hypoplasia, in addition, the sinoatrial node was misplaced and its size reduced. However, we did not observe gross morphological changes in brains of SynCre (+/-) Ric8a (lacZ/F) mutants. Our results demonstrate that in mice the activity of RIC8A in neurons is essential for survival and its deficiency causes a severe neuromuscular phenotype.

  17. Effect of Cistanche Desertica Polysaccharides on Learning and Memory Functions and Ultrastructure of Cerebral Neurons in Experimental Aging Mice

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    孙云; 邓杨梅; 王德俊; 沈春锋; 刘晓梅; 张洪泉

    2001-01-01

    To observe the effects of Cistanche desertica polysaccharides (CDP) on the learning and memory functions and cerebral ultrastructure in experimental aging mice. Methods: CDP was administrated intragastrically 50 or 100 mg/kg per day for 64 successive days to experimental aging model mice induced by D-galactose, then the learning and memory functions of mice were estimated by step-down test and Y-maze test; organelles of brain tissue and cerebral ultrastructure were observed by transmission electron microscope and physical strength was determined by swimming test. Results: CDP could obviously enhance the learning and memory functions (P<0.01) and prolong the swimming time (P<0.05), decrease the number of lipofuscin and slow down the degeneration of mitochondria in neurons(P<0.05), and improve the degeneration of cerebral ultra-structure in aging mice. Conclusion: CDP could improve the impaired physiological function and alleviate cerebral morphological change in experimental aging mice.

  18. Ordering Dynamics in Neuron Activity Pattern Model: An Insight to Brain Functionality.

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    Jasleen Gundh

    Full Text Available We study the domain ordering kinetics in d = 2 ferromagnets which corresponds to populated neuron activities with both long-ranged interactions, V(r ∼ r-n and short-ranged interactions. We present the results from comprehensive Monte Carlo (MC simulations for the nonconserved Ising model with n ≥ 2, interaction range considering near and far neighbors. Our model results could represent the long-ranged neuron kinetics (n ≤ 4 in consistent with the same dynamical behaviour of short-ranged case (n ≥ 4 at far below and near criticality. We found that emergence of fast and slow kinetics of long and short ranged case could imitate the formation of connections among near and distant neurons. The calculated characteristic length scale in long-ranged interaction is found to be n independent (L(t ∼ t1/(n-2, whereas short-ranged interaction follows L(t ∼ t1/2 law and approximately preserve universality in domain kinetics. Further, we did the comparative study of phase ordering near the critical temperature which follows different behaviours of domain ordering near and far critical temperature but follows universal scaling law.

  19. Synergic Functions of miRNAs Determine Neuronal Fate of Adult Neural Stem Cells

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    Meritxell Pons-Espinal

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Summary: Adult neurogenesis requires the precise control of neuronal versus astrocyte lineage determination in neural stem cells. While microRNAs (miRNAs are critically involved in this step during development, their actions in adult hippocampal neural stem cells (aNSCs has been unclear. As entry point to address that question we chose DICER, an endoribonuclease essential for miRNA biogenesis and other RNAi-related processes. By specific ablation of Dicer in aNSCs in vivo and in vitro, we demonstrate that miRNAs are required for the generation of new neurons, but not astrocytes, in the adult murine hippocampus. Moreover, we identify 11 miRNAs, of which 9 have not been previously characterized in neurogenesis, that determine neurogenic lineage fate choice of aNSCs at the expense of astrogliogenesis. Finally, we propose that the 11 miRNAs sustain adult hippocampal neurogenesis through synergistic modulation of 26 putative targets from different pathways. : In this article, the authors demonstrate that Dicer-dependent miRNAs are required for the generation of new neurons, but not astrocytes, in the adult hippocampus in vivo and in vitro. The authors identify a new set of 11 miRNAs that synergistically converge on multiple targets in different pathways to sustain neurogenic lineage fate commitment in aNSCs. Keywords: mouse, hippocampus, neural stem cells, fate choice, adult neurogenesis, astrogliogenesis, DICER, microRNAs, synergy

  20. Synthesis and preliminary evaluation of [11C]-(-)-phenylephrine as a functional heart neuronal PET agent

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rosario, Renato B. del; Jung, Y.-W.; Caraher, John; Chakraborty, Pulak K.; Wieland, Donald M.

    1996-01-01

    The in vivo behavior of (-)-[ 11 C]phenylephrine (PHEN) is compared with the structurally similar but monoamine oxidase (MAO)-resistant analog (-)-[ 11 C]-m-hydroxyephedrine (HED), which is an established heart neuronal marker. The chiral synthesis of PHEN has been achieved by direct methylation of (-)-m-octopamine with either 11 CH 3 I or CF 3 SO 11 3 CH 3 . These synthetic methods produced PHEN with a specific activity ranging from 500-1000 Ci/mmol, in a radiochemical yield of >50% (EOS) and with an enantiomeric purity of 94-96%. Biodistribution studies indicate the initial uptake of PHEN in rat heart is approximately half that of HED. Following PHEN injection, radioactivity egresses from the rat heart rapidly, with 50% washout occurring from 5 to 60 min. HED washout over this interval was less than 20%. The heart neuronal selectivity determined by desipramine blockade of the amine neuronal transporter was 75-77% compared to 92-95% for HED. Ring-labeled (-)-[ 3 H]phenylephrine gave tissue-to-blood concentration ratios and heart clearance times very similar to PHEN. Rats pretreated with the MAO A inhibitor clorgyline showed higher levels of activity in the heart at 15 and 60 min. Tandem PET studies with PHEN and HED in the closed-chest dog provided excellent heart images with both tracers

  1. dHb9 expressing larval motor neurons persist through metamorphosis to innervate adult-specific muscle targets and function in Drosophila eclosion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banerjee, Soumya; Toral, Marcus; Siefert, Matthew; Conway, David; Dorr, Meredith; Fernandes, Joyce

    2016-12-01

    The Drosophila larval nervous system is radically restructured during metamorphosis to produce adult specific neural circuits and behaviors. Genesis of new neurons, death of larval neurons and remodeling of those neurons that persistent collectively act to shape the adult nervous system. Here, we examine the fate of a subset of larval motor neurons during this restructuring process. We used a dHb9 reporter, in combination with the FLP/FRT system to individually identify abdominal motor neurons in the larval to adult transition using a combination of relative cell body location, axonal position, and muscle targets. We found that segment specific cell death of some dHb9 expressing motor neurons occurs throughout the metamorphosis period and continues into the post-eclosion period. Many dHb9 > GFP expressing neurons however persist in the two anterior hemisegments, A1 and A2, which have segment specific muscles required for eclosion while a smaller proportion also persist in A2-A5. Consistent with a functional requirement for these neurons, ablating them during the pupal period produces defects in adult eclosion. In adults, subsequent to the execution of eclosion behaviors, the NMJs of some of these neurons were found to be dismantled and their muscle targets degenerate. Our studies demonstrate a critical continuity of some larval motor neurons into adults and reveal that multiple aspects of motor neuron remodeling and plasticity that are essential for adult motor behaviors. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Develop Neurobiol 76: 1387-1416, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  2. Functional characterization and quantitative expression analysis of two GnRH-related peptide receptors in the mosquito, Aedes aegypti.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oryan, Alireza; Wahedi, Azizia; Paluzzi, Jean-Paul V

    2018-03-04

    To cope with stressful events such as flight, organisms have evolved various regulatory mechanisms, often involving control by endocrine-derived factors. In insects, two stress-related factors include the gonadotropin-releasing hormone-related peptides adipokinetic hormone (AKH) and corazonin (CRZ). AKH is a pleiotropic hormone best known as a substrate liberator of proteins, lipids, and carbohydrates. Although a universal function has not yet been elucidated, CRZ has been shown to have roles in pigmentation, ecdysis or act as a cardiostimulatory factor. While both these neuropeptides and their respective receptors (AKHR and CRZR) have been characterized in several organisms, details on their specific roles within the disease vector, Aedes aegypti, remain largely unexplored. Here, we obtained three A. aegypti AKHR transcript variants and further identified the A. aegypti CRZR receptor. Receptor expression using a heterologous functional assay revealed that these receptors exhibit a highly specific response for their native ligands. Developmental quantitative expression analysis of CRZR revealed enrichment during the pupal and adult stages. In adults, quantitative spatial expression analysis revealed CRZR transcript in a variety of organs including head, thoracic ganglia, primary reproductive organs (ovary and testis), as well as male carcass. This suggest CRZ may play a role in ecdysis, and neuronal expression of CRZR indicates a possible role for CRZ within the nervous system. Quantitative developmental expression analysis of AKHR identified significant transcript enrichment in early adult stages. AKHR transcript was observed in the head, thoracic ganglia, accessory reproductive tissues and the carcass of adult females, while it was detected in the abdominal ganglia and enriched significantly in the carcass of adult males, which supports the known function of AKH in energy metabolism. Collectively, given the enrichment of CRZR and AKHR in the primary and

  3. Electrophysiological Assessment of Serotonin and GABA Neuron Function in the Dorsal Raphe during the Third Trimester Equivalent Developmental Period in Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morton, Russell A; Yanagawa, Yuchio; Valenzuela, C Fernando

    2015-01-01

    Alterations in the development of the serotonin system can have prolonged effects, including depression and anxiety disorders later in life. Serotonin axonal projections from the dorsal raphe undergo extensive refinement during the first 2 weeks of postnatal life in rodents (equivalent to the third trimester of human pregnancy). However, little is known about the functional properties of serotonin and GABA neurons in the dorsal raphe during this critical developmental period. We assessed the functional properties and synaptic connectivity of putative serotoninergic neurons and GABAergic neurons in the dorsal raphe during early [postnatal day (P) P5-P7] and late (P15-P17) stages of the third trimester equivalent period using electrophysiology. Our studies demonstrate that GABAergic neurons are hyperexcitable at P5-P7 relative to P15-P17. Furthermore, putative serotonin neurons exhibit an increase in both excitatory and GABAA receptor-mediated spontaneous postsynaptic currents during this developmental period. Our data suggest that GABAergic neurons and putative serotonin neurons undergo significant electrophysiological changes during neonatal development.

  4. Neuron-glia signaling and the protection of axon function by Schwann cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quintes, Susanne; Goebbels, Sandra; Saher, Gesine; Schwab, Markus H; Nave, Klaus-Armin

    2010-03-01

    The interaction between neurons and glial cells is a feature of all higher nervous systems. In the vertebrate peripheral nervous system, Schwann cells ensheath and myelinate axons thereby allowing rapid saltatory conduction and ensuring axonal integrity. Recently, some of the key molecules in neuron-Schwann cell signaling have been identified. Neuregulin-1 (NRG1) type III presented on the axonal surface determines the myelination fate of axons and controls myelin sheath thickness. Recent observations suggest that NRG1 regulates myelination via the control of Schwann cell cholesterol biosynthesis. This concept is supported by the finding that high cholesterol levels in Schwann cells are a rate-limiting factor for myelin protein production and transport of the major myelin protein P0 from the endoplasmic reticulum into the growing myelin sheath. NRG1 type III activates ErbB receptors on the Schwann cell, which leads to an increase in intracellular PIP3 levels via the PI3-kinase pathway. Surprisingly, enforced elevation of PIP3 levels by inactivation of the phosphatase PTEN in developing and mature Schwann cells does not entirely mimic NRG1 type III stimulated myelin growth, but predominantly causes focal hypermyelination starting at Schmidt-Lanterman incisures and nodes of Ranvier. This indicates that the glial transduction of pro-myelinating signals has to be under tight and life-long control to preserve integrity of the myelinated axon. Understanding the cross talk between neurons and Schwann cells will help to further define the role of glia in preserving axonal integrity and to develop therapeutic strategies for peripheral neuropathies such as CMT1A.

  5. Prolonged Minocycline Treatment Impairs Motor Neuronal Survival and Glial Function in Organotypic Rat Spinal Cord Cultures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinkernelle, Josephine; Fansa, Hisham; Ebmeyer, Uwe; Keilhoff, Gerburg

    2013-01-01

    Background Minocycline, a second-generation tetracycline antibiotic, exhibits anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective effects in various experimental models of neurological diseases, such as stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and spinal cord injury. However, conflicting results have prompted a debate regarding the beneficial effects of minocycline. Methods In this study, we analyzed minocycline treatment in organotypic spinal cord cultures of neonatal rats as a model of motor neuron survival and regeneration after injury. Minocycline was administered in 2 different concentrations (10 and 100 µM) at various time points in culture and fixed after 1 week. Results Prolonged minocycline administration decreased the survival of motor neurons in the organotypic cultures. This effect was strongly enhanced with higher concentrations of minocycline. High concentrations of minocycline reduced the number of DAPI-positive cell nuclei in organotypic cultures and simultaneously inhibited microglial activation. Astrocytes, which covered the surface of the control organotypic cultures, revealed a peripheral distribution after early minocycline treatment. Thus, we further analyzed the effects of 100 µM minocycline on the viability and migration ability of dispersed primary glial cell cultures. We found that minocycline reduced cell viability, delayed wound closure in a scratch migration assay and increased connexin 43 protein levels in these cultures. Conclusions The administration of high doses of minocycline was deleterious for motor neuron survival. In addition, it inhibited microglial activation and impaired glial viability and migration. These data suggest that especially high doses of minocycline might have undesired affects in treatment of spinal cord injury. Further experiments are required to determine the conditions for the safe clinical administration of minocycline in spinal cord injured patients. PMID:23967343

  6. Essential role of neuron-enriched diacylglycerol kinase (DGK, DGKbeta in neurite spine formation, contributing to cognitive function.

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    Yasuhito Shirai

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Diacylglycerol (DG kinase (DGK phosphorylates DG to produce phosphatidic acid (PA. Of the 10 subtypes of mammalian DGKs, DGKbeta is a membrane-localized subtype and abundantly expressed in the cerebral cortex, hippocampus, and caudate-putamen. However, its physiological roles in neurons and higher brain function have not been elucidated. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We, therefore, developed DGKbeta KO mice using the Sleeping Beauty transposon system, and found that its long-term potentiation in the hippocampal CA1 region was reduced, causing impairment of cognitive functions including spatial and long-term memories in Y-maze and Morris water-maze tests. The primary cultured hippocampal neurons from KO mice had less branches and spines compared to the wild type. This morphological impairment was rescued by overexpression of DGKbeta. In addition, overexpression of DGKbeta in SH-SY5Y cells or primary cultured mouse hippocampal neurons resulted in branch- and spine-formation, while a splice variant form of DGKbeta, which has kinase activity but loses membrane localization, did not induce branches and spines. In the cells overexpressing DGKbeta but not the splice variant form, DGK product, PA, was increased and the substrate, DG, was decreased on the plasma membrane. Importantly, lower spine density and abnormality of PA and DG contents in the CA1 region of the KO mice were confirmed. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: These results demonstrate that membrane-localized DGKbeta regulates spine formation by regulation of lipids, contributing to the maintenance of neural networks in synaptic transmission of cognitive processes including memory.

  7. The Effect of a Short-term Glucose Deprivation on Neuron Net Functioning of Hippocampus Primary Culture on a Multi-electrode Matrix

    OpenAIRE

    Vedunova M.V.; Korotchenko S.A.; Balashova A.N.; Isakova A.O.; Khaspekov L.G.; Kazantsev V.B.; Mukhina I.V.

    2011-01-01

    There has been studied the effect of a short-term glucose deprivation on neuron net functioning of hippocampus primary culture developing within 32 days on a multi-electrode matrix MED64 (Alpha MED Sciences Company, Japan) in an early and remote periods after deprivation. A short-term glucose deprivation (20 min) has been shown to result in the increase of electrobiological activity of neuron net of hippocampus primary culture, with the cascade of metabolic reactions being activated leading t...

  8. Loss of spatacsin function alters lysosomal lipid clearance leading to upper and lower motor neuron degeneration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Branchu, Julien; Boutry, Maxime; Sourd, Laura; Depp, Marine; Leone, Céline; Corriger, Alexandrine; Vallucci, Maeva; Esteves, Typhaine; Matusiak, Raphaël; Dumont, Magali; Muriel, Marie-Paule; Santorelli, Filippo M; Brice, Alexis; El Hachimi, Khalid Hamid; Stevanin, Giovanni; Darios, Frédéric

    2017-06-01

    Mutations in SPG11 account for the most common form of autosomal recessive hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP), characterized by a gait disorder associated with various brain alterations. Mutations in the same gene are also responsible for rare forms of Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT) disease and progressive juvenile-onset amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). To elucidate the physiopathological mechanisms underlying these human pathologies, we disrupted the Spg11 gene in mice by inserting stop codons in exon 32, mimicking the most frequent mutations found in patients. The Spg11 knockout mouse developed early-onset motor impairment and cognitive deficits. These behavioral deficits were associated with progressive brain atrophy with the loss of neurons in the primary motor cortex, cerebellum and hippocampus, as well as with accumulation of dystrophic axons in the corticospinal tract. Spinal motor neurons also degenerated and this was accompanied by fragmentation of neuromuscular junctions and muscle atrophy. This new Spg11 knockout mouse therefore recapitulates the full range of symptoms associated with SPG11 mutations observed in HSP, ALS and CMT patients. Examination of the cellular alterations observed in this model suggests that the loss of spatacsin leads to the accumulation of lipids in lysosomes by perturbing their clearance from these organelles. Altogether, our results link lysosomal dysfunction and lipid metabolism to neurodegeneration and pinpoint a critical role of spatacsin in lipid turnover. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Processing, distribution, and function of VGF, a neuronal and endocrine peptide precursor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levi, Andrea; Ferri, Gian-Luca; Watson, Elizabeth; Possenti, Roberta; Salton, Stephen R J

    2004-08-01

    1. The vgf gene encodes a neuropeptide precursor with a restricted pattern of expression that is limited to a subset of neurons in the central and peripheral nervous systems and to specific populations of endocrine cells in the adenohypophysis, adrenal medulla, gastrointestinal tract, and pancreas. In responsive neurons, vgf transcription is upregulated by neurotrophins. the basis for the original identification of VGF as nerve growth factor- (NGF) inducible in PC12 cells (A. Levi, J. D. Eldridge, and B. M. Paterson, Science 229:393-395, 1985). 2. In this review, we shall summarize data concerning the transcriptional regulation of vgf in vitro, the structural organization of the vgf promoter as well as the transcription factors which regulate its activity. 3. On the basis of in situ hybridization and immunohistochemical studies, the in vivo tissue-specific expression of VGF during differentiation and in the adult will be summarized. 4. Parallel biochemical data will be reviewed, addressing the proteolytical processing of the pro-VGF precursor within the secretory compartment of neuroendocrine cells. 5. Finally, analysis of the phenotype of VGF knockout mice will be discussed, implying a nonredundant role of VGF products in the regulation of energy storage and expenditure.

  10. Estimation of regional myocardial sympathetic neuronal function with I-123 metaiodobenzylguanidine (MIBG) myocardial images in patients with cardiomyopathy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tanaka, Takeshi; Aizawa, Tadanori; Kato, Kazuzo; Nakano, Hajime; Igarashi, Masaki; Ueno, Takashi; Hirosawa, Koshichiro; Kusakabe, Kiyoko.

    1989-01-01

    Myocardial SPECT images with I-123 metaiodobenzylguanidine (MIBG) were obtained in 10 patients with cardiomyopathy under stable state. For myocardial imaging, MIBG and Tl-201 (Tl) were simultaneously injected and collected. The ratio of MIBG to Tl (M/T ratio) in ROI was obtained with 50% cut off levels in order to eliminate background activity. The patients were divided into three major groups: (l) those who had the M/T ratio ranging from 0.8 to l.20 at rest and had marked defects in the infero-lateral region on delayed MIBG images, where pathophysiologically accelerated regional sympathetic neuronal function was suspected (n=5), (II) those who had increased M/T ratios (l.6 and l.7) in the basal septal wall (n=3), and (III) those who had decreased M/T ratios (0.7 and 0.75) in the apical septal wall, where depletion of myocardial norepinephrine was suspected (n=2). These findings indicate the potential of myocardial MIBG images to evaluate myocardial distribution of norepinephrine, i.e. myocardial sympathetic neuronal function. Certain shortcomings, such as an increased background due to dual isotopes and an increased pulmonary uptake of MIBG, require further study on quantitative methods. (Namekawa, K)

  11. Gain-of-function mutations in the ALS8 causative gene VAPB have detrimental effects on neurons and muscles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mario Sanhueza

    2013-12-01

    Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS is a motor neuron degenerative disease characterized by a progressive, and ultimately fatal, muscle paralysis. The human VAMP-Associated Protein B (hVAPB is the causative gene of ALS type 8. Previous studies have shown that a loss-of-function mechanism is responsible for VAPB-induced ALS. Recently, a novel mutation in hVAPB (V234I has been identified but its pathogenic potential has not been assessed. We found that neuronal expression of the V234I mutant allele in Drosophila (DVAP-V260I induces defects in synaptic structure and microtubule architecture that are opposite to those associated with DVAP mutants and transgenic expression of other ALS-linked alleles. Expression of DVAP-V260I also induces aggregate formation, reduced viability, wing postural defects, abnormal locomotion behavior, nuclear abnormalities, neurodegeneration and upregulation of the heat-shock-mediated stress response. Similar, albeit milder, phenotypes are associated with the overexpression of the wild-type protein. These data show that overexpressing the wild-type DVAP is sufficient to induce the disease and that DVAP-V260I is a pathogenic allele with increased wild-type activity. We propose that a combination of gain- and loss-of-function mechanisms is responsible for VAPB-induced ALS.

  12. Neurotrophin-3 Enhances the Synaptic Organizing Function of TrkC-Protein Tyrosine Phosphatase σ in Rat Hippocampal Neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ammendrup-Johnsen, Ina; Naito, Yusuke; Craig, Ann Marie; Takahashi, Hideto

    2015-09-09

    Neurotrophin-3 (NT-3) and its high-affinity receptor TrkC play crucial trophic roles in neuronal differentiation, axon outgrowth, and synapse development and plasticity in the nervous system. We demonstrated previously that postsynaptic TrkC functions as a glutamatergic synapse-inducing (synaptogenic) cell adhesion molecule trans-interacting with presynaptic protein tyrosine phosphatase σ (PTPσ). Given that NT-3 and PTPσ bind distinct domains of the TrkC extracellular region, here we tested the hypothesis that NT-3 modulates TrkC/PTPσ binding and synaptogenic activity. NT-3 enhanced PTPσ binding to cell surface-expressed TrkC and facilitated the presynapse-inducing activity of TrkC in rat hippocampal neurons. Imaging of recycling presynaptic vesicles combined with TrkC knockdown and rescue approaches demonstrated that NT-3 rapidly potentiates presynaptic function via binding endogenous postsynaptic TrkC in a tyrosine kinase-independent manner. Thus, NT-3 positively modulates the TrkC-PTPσ complex for glutamatergic presynaptic assembly and function independently from TrkC kinase activation. Our findings provide new insight into synaptic roles of neurotrophin signaling and mechanisms controlling synaptic organizing complexes. Significance statement: Although many synaptogenic adhesion complexes have been identified in recent years, little is known about modulatory mechanisms. Here, we demonstrate a novel role of neurotrophin-3 in synaptic assembly and function as a positive modulator of the TrkC-protein tyrosine phosphatase σ complex. This study provides new insight into the involvement of neurotrophin signaling in synapse development and plasticity, presenting a molecular mechanism that may underlie previous observations of short- and long-term enhancement of presynaptic function by neurotrophin. Given the links of synaptogenic adhesion molecules to autism and schizophrenia, this study might also contribute to a better understanding of the pathogenesis of

  13. The Molecular Motor KIF1A Transports the TrkA Neurotrophin Receptor and Is Essential for Sensory Neuron Survival and Function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanaka, Yosuke; Niwa, Shinsuke; Dong, Ming; Farkhondeh, Atena; Wang, Li; Zhou, Ruyun; Hirokawa, Nobutaka

    2016-06-15

    KIF1A is a major axonal transport motor protein, but its functional significance remains elusive. Here we show that KIF1A-haploinsufficient mice developed sensory neuropathy. We found progressive loss of TrkA(+) sensory neurons in Kif1a(+/-) dorsal root ganglia (DRGs). Moreover, axonal transport of TrkA was significantly disrupted in Kif1a(+/-) neurons. Live imaging and immunoprecipitation assays revealed that KIF1A bound to TrkA-containing vesicles through the adaptor GTP-Rab3, suggesting that TrkA is a cargo of the KIF1A motor. Physiological measurements revealed a weaker capsaicin response in Kif1a(+/-) DRG neurons. Moreover, these neurons were hyposensitive to nerve growth factor, which could explain the reduced neuronal survival and the functional deficiency of the pain receptor TRPV1. Because phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) signaling significantly rescued these phenotypes and also increased Kif1a mRNA, we propose that KIF1A is essential for the survival and function of sensory neurons because of the TrkA transport and its synergistic support of the NGF/TrkA/PI3K signaling pathway. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Phospholipase A2 - nexus of aging, oxidative stress, neuronal excitability, and functional decline of the aging nervous system? Insights from a snail model system of neuronal aging and age-associated memory impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hermann, Petra M; Watson, Shawn N; Wildering, Willem C

    2014-01-01

    The aging brain undergoes a range of changes varying from subtle structural and physiological changes causing only minor functional decline under healthy normal aging conditions, to severe cognitive or neurological impairment associated with extensive loss of neurons and circuits due to age-associated neurodegenerative disease conditions. Understanding how biological aging processes affect the brain and how they contribute to the onset and progress of age-associated neurodegenerative diseases is a core research goal in contemporary neuroscience. This review focuses on the idea that changes in intrinsic neuronal electrical excitability associated with (per)oxidation of membrane lipids and activation of phospholipase A2 (PLA2) enzymes are an important mechanism of learning and memory failure under normal aging conditions. Specifically, in the context of this special issue on the biology of cognitive aging we portray the opportunities offered by the identifiable neurons and behaviorally characterized neural circuits of the freshwater snail Lymnaea stagnalis in neuronal aging research and recapitulate recent insights indicating a key role of lipid peroxidation-induced PLA2 as instruments of aging, oxidative stress and inflammation in age-associated neuronal and memory impairment in this model system. The findings are discussed in view of accumulating evidence suggesting involvement of analogous mechanisms in the etiology of age-associated dysfunction and disease of the human and mammalian brain.

  15. Phospholipase A2 - nexus of aging, oxidative stress, neuronal excitability and functional decline of the aging nervous system? Insights from a snail model system of neuronal aging and age-associated memory impairment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Petra Maria Hermann

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available TThe aging brain can undergo a range of changes varying from subtle structural and physiological changes causing only minor functional decline under healthy normal aging conditions, to severe cognitive or neurological impairment associated with extensive loss of neurons and circuits due to age-associated neurodegenerative disease conditions. Understanding how biological aging processes affect the brain and how they contribute to the onset and progress of age-associated neurodegenerative diseases is a core research goal in contemporary neuroscience. This review focuses on the idea that changes in intrinsic neuronal electrical excitability associated with (peroxidation of membrane lipids and activation of phospholipase A2 (PLA2 enzymes are an important mechanism of learning and memory failure under normal aging conditions. Specifically, in the context of this special issue on the Biology of cognitive aging we (1 portray the opportunities offered by the identifiable neurons and behaviorally characterized neural circuits of the freshwater snail Lymnaea stagnalis in neuronal aging research and (2 recapitulate recent insights indicating a key role of lipid peroxidation-induced PLA2 as instruments of aging, oxidative stress and inflammation in age-associated neuronal and memory impairment in this model system. The findings are discussed in view of accumulating evidence suggesting involvement of analogous mechanisms in the etiology of age-associated dysfunction and disease of the human and mammalian brain.

  16. PCB 136 Atropselectively Alters Morphometric and Functional Parameters of Neuronal Connectivity in Cultured Rat Hippocampal Neurons via Ryanodine Receptor-Dependent Mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-01

    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 100nM 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. PMID:24385416

  17. Extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1 and 2 are not required for GnRH neuron development and normal female reproductive axis function in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wierman, Margaret E; Xu, Mei; Pierce, A; Bliesner, B; Bliss, S P; Roberson, M S

    2012-01-01

    Selective deletion of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) 1 and ERK2 in the pituitary gonadotrope and ovarian granulosa cells disrupts female reproductive axis function. Thus, we asked if ERK1 and ERK2 are critical for GnRH neuron ontogeny or the central control of female reproductive function. GnRH-Cre-recombinase (Cre+) expressing mice were crossed with mice with a global deletion of ERK1 and a floxed ERK2 allele (Erk1-/Erk2fl/fl) to selectively delete ERK2 in GnRH neurons. Cre-recombinase mRNA was selectively expressed in the brain of Cre+ mice. GnRH neuron number and location were determined during embryogenesis and in the adult. GnRH neuron counts at E15 did not differ between experimental and control groups (1,198 ± 65 and 1,160 ± 80 respectively, p = NS). In adults, numbers of GnRH neurons in the GnRHCre+Erk1-/Erk2- mice (741 ± 157) were similar to those in controls (756 ± 7), without alteration in their distribution across the forebrain. ERK1 and 2 deficiency did not alter the timing of vaginal opening, age at first estrus, or estrous cyclicity. Although ERK1 and 2 are components of a dominant signaling pathway in GnRH neuronal cells that modulates survival and control of GnRH gene expression, other signaling pathways compensate for their deletion in vivo to allow GnRH neuron survival and targeting and normal onset of female sexual maturation and reproductive function. In contrast to effects at the pituitary and the ovary, ERK1 and ERK2 are dispensable at the level of the GnRH neuron. Copyright © 2011 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  18. Efficient multi-site two-photon functional imaging of neuronal circuits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castanares, Michael Lawrence; Gautam, Vini; Drury, Jack; Bachor, Hans; Daria, Vincent R

    2016-12-01

    Two-photon imaging using high-speed multi-channel detectors is a promising approach for optical recording of cellular membrane dynamics at multiple sites. A main bottleneck of this technique is the limited number of photons captured within a short exposure time (~1ms). Here, we implement temporal gating to improve the two-photon fluorescence yield from holographically projected multiple foci whilst maintaining a biologically safe incident average power. We observed up to 6x improvement in the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) in Fluorescein and cultured hippocampal neurons showing evoked calcium transients. With improved SNR, we could pave the way to achieving multi-site optical recording of fluorogenic probes with response times in the order of ~1ms.

  19. [Hardware Implementation of Numerical Simulation Function of Hodgkin-Huxley Model Neurons Action Potential Based on Field Programmable Gate Array].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jinlong; Lu, Mai; Hu, Yanwen; Chen, Xiaoqiang; Pan, Qiangqiang

    2015-12-01

    Neuron is the basic unit of the biological neural system. The Hodgkin-Huxley (HH) model is one of the most realistic neuron models on the electrophysiological characteristic description of neuron. Hardware implementation of neuron could provide new research ideas to clinical treatment of spinal cord injury, bionics and artificial intelligence. Based on the HH model neuron and the DSP Builder technology, in the present study, a single HH model neuron hardware implementation was completed in Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA). The neuron implemented in FPGA was stimulated by different types of current, the action potential response characteristics were analyzed, and the correlation coefficient between numerical simulation result and hardware implementation result were calculated. The results showed that neuronal action potential response of FPGA was highly consistent with numerical simulation result. This work lays the foundation for hardware implementation of neural network.

  20. Activation of functional α7-containing nAChRs in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons by physiological levels of choline in the presence of PNU-120596.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bopanna I Kalappa

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available The level of expression of functional α7-containing nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons is believed to be very low compared to hippocampal CA1 interneurons, and for many years this expression was largely overlooked. However, high densities of expression of functional α7-containing nAChRs in CA1 pyramidal neurons may not be necessary for triggering important cellular and network functions, especially if activation of α7-containing nAChRs occurs in the presence of positive allosteric modulators such as PNU-120596.An approach previously developed for α7-containing nAChRs expressed in tuberomammillary neurons was applied to investigate functional CA1 pyramidal α7-containing nAChRs using rat coronal hippocampal slices and patch-clamp electrophysiology. The majority (∼71% of tested CA1 pyramidal neurons expressed low densities of functional α7-containing nAChRs as evidenced by small whole-cell responses to choline, a selective endogenous agonist of α7 nAChRs. These responses were potentiated by PNU-120596, a novel positive allosteric modulator of α7 nAChRs. The density of functional α7-containing nAChRs expressed in CA1 pyramidal neurons (and thus, the normalized net effect of activation, i.e., response net charge per unit of membrane capacitance per unit of time was estimated to be ∼5% of the density observed in CA1 interneurons. The results of this study demonstrate that despite low levels of expression of functional pyramidal α7-containing nAChRs, physiological levels of choline (∼10 µM are sufficient to activate these receptors and transiently depolarize and even excite CA1 pyramidal neurons in the presence of PNU-120596. The observed effects are possible because in the presence of 10 µM choline and 1-5 µM PNU-120596, a single opening of an individual pyramidal α7-containing nAChR ion channel appears to transiently depolarize (∼4 mV the entire pyramidal neuron and occasionally

  1. Mycolactone-mediated neurite degeneration and functional effects in cultured human and rat DRG neurons: Mechanisms underlying hypoalgesia in Buruli ulcer.

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    Anand, U; Sinisi, M; Fox, M; MacQuillan, A; Quick, T; Korchev, Y; Bountra, C; McCarthy, T; Anand, P

    2016-01-01

    Mycolactone is a polyketide toxin secreted by the mycobacterium Mycobacterium ulcerans, responsible for the extensive hypoalgesic skin lesions characteristic of patients with Buruli ulcer. A recent pre-clinical study proposed that mycolactone may produce analgesia via activation of the angiotensin II type 2 receptor (AT2R). In contrast, AT2R antagonist EMA401 has shown analgesic efficacy in animal models and clinical trials for neuropathic pain. We therefore investigated the morphological and functional effects of mycolactone in cultured human and rat dorsal root ganglia (DRG) neurons and the role of AT2R using EMA401. Primary sensory neurons were prepared from avulsed cervical human DRG and rat DRG; 24 h after plating, neurons were incubated for 24 to 96 h with synthetic mycolactone A/B, followed by immunostaining with antibodies to PGP9.5, Gap43, β tubulin, or Mitotracker dye staining. Acute functional effects were examined by measuring capsaicin responses with calcium imaging in DRG neuronal cultures treated with mycolactone. Morphological effects: Mycolactone-treated cultures showed dramatically reduced numbers of surviving neurons and non-neuronal cells, reduced Gap43 and β tubulin expression, degenerating neurites and reduced cell body diameter, compared with controls. Dose-related reduction of neurite length was observed in mycolactone-treated cultures. Mitochondria were distributed throughout the length of neurites and soma of control neurons, but clustered in the neurites and soma of mycolactone-treated neurons. Functional effects: Mycolactone-treated human and rat DRG neurons showed dose-related inhibition of capsaicin responses, which were reversed by calcineurin inhibitor cyclosporine and phosphodiesterase inhibitor 3-isobutyl-1-Methylxanthine, indicating involvement of cAMP/ATP reduction. The morphological and functional effects of mycolactone were not altered by Angiotensin II or AT2R antagonist EMA401. Mycolactone induces toxic effects in DRG

  2. Neurotoxicity of cytarabine (Ara-C) in dorsal root ganglion neurons originates from impediment of mtDNA synthesis and compromise of mitochondrial function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhuo, Ming; Gorgun, Murat F; Englander, Ella W

    2018-06-01

    Peripheral Nervous System (PNS) neurotoxicity caused by cancer drugs hinders attainment of chemotherapy goals. Due to leakiness of the blood nerve barrier, circulating chemotherapeutic drugs reach PNS neurons and adversely affect their function. Chemotherapeutic drugs are designed to target dividing cancer cells and mechanisms underlying their toxicity in postmitotic neurons remain to be fully clarified. The objective of this work was to elucidate progression of events triggered by antimitotic drugs in postmitotic neurons. For proof of mechanism study, we chose cytarabine (ara-C), an antimetabolite used in treatment of hematological cancers. Ara-C is a cytosine analog that terminates DNA synthesis. To investigate how ara-C affects postmitotic neurons, which replicate mitochondrial but not genomic DNA, we adapted a model of Dorsal Root Ganglion (DRG) neurons. We showed that DNA polymerase γ, which is responsible for mtDNA synthesis, is inhibited by ara-C and that sublethal ara-C exposure of DRG neurons leads to reduction in mtDNA content, ROS generation, oxidative mtDNA damage formation, compromised mitochondrial respiration and diminution of NADPH and GSH stores, as well as, activation of the DNA damage response. Hence, it is plausible that in ara-C exposed DRG neurons, ROS amplified by the high mitochondrial content shifts from physiologic to pathologic levels signaling stress to the nucleus. Combined, the findings suggest that ara-C neurotoxicity in DRG neurons originates in mitochondria and that continuous mtDNA synthesis and reliance on oxidative phosphorylation for energy needs sensitize the highly metabolic neurons to injury by mtDNA synthesis terminating cancer drugs. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Vector-free and transgene-free human iPS cells differentiate into functional neurons and enhance functional recovery after ischemic stroke in mice.

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    Osama Mohamad

    Full Text Available Stroke is a leading cause of human death and disability in the adult population in the United States and around the world. While stroke treatment is limited, stem cell transplantation has emerged as a promising regenerative therapy to replace or repair damaged tissues and enhance functional recovery after stroke. Recently, the creation of induced pluripotent stem (iPS cells through reprogramming of somatic cells has revolutionized cell therapy by providing an unlimited source of autologous cells for transplantation. In addition, the creation of vector-free and transgene-free human iPS (hiPS cells provides a new generation of stem cells with a reduced risk of tumor formation that was associated with the random integration of viral vectors seen with previous techniques. However, the potential use of these cells in the treatment of ischemic stroke has not been explored. In the present investigation, we examined the neuronal differentiation of vector-free and transgene-free hiPS cells and the transplantation of hiPS cell-derived neural progenitor cells (hiPS-NPCs in an ischemic stroke model in mice. Vector-free hiPS cells were maintained in feeder-free and serum-free conditions and differentiated into functional neurons in vitro using a newly developed differentiation protocol. Twenty eight days after transplantation in stroke mice, hiPS-NPCs showed mature neuronal markers in vivo. No tumor formation was seen up to 12 months after transplantation. Transplantation of hiPS-NPCs restored neurovascular coupling, increased trophic support and promoted behavioral recovery after stroke. These data suggest that using vector-free and transgene-free hiPS cells in stem cell therapy are safe and efficacious in enhancing recovery after focal ischemic stroke in mice.

  4. Chronic activation of hypothalamic oxytocin neurons improves cardiac function during left ventricular hypertrophy-induced heart failure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garrott, Kara; Dyavanapalli, Jhansi; Cauley, Edmund; Dwyer, Mary Kate; Kuzmiak-Glancy, Sarah; Wang, Xin; Mendelowitz, David; Kay, Matthew W

    2017-09-01

    A distinctive hallmark of heart failure (HF) is autonomic imbalance, consisting of increased sympathetic activity, and decreased parasympathetic tone. Recent work suggests that activation of hypothalamic oxytocin (OXT) neurons could improve autonomic balance during HF. We hypothesized that a novel method of chronic selective activation of hypothalamic OXT neurons will improve cardiac function and reduce inflammation and fibrosis in a rat model of HF. Two groups of male Sprague-Dawley rats underwent trans-ascending aortic constriction (TAC) to induce left ventricular (LV) hypertrophy that progresses to HF. In one TAC group, OXT neurons in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus were chronically activated by selective expression and activation of excitatory DREADDs receptors with daily injections of clozapine N-oxide (CNO) (TAC + OXT). Two additional age-matched groups received either saline injections (Control) or CNO injections for excitatory DREADDs activation (OXT NORM). Heart rate (HR), LV developed pressure (LVDP), and coronary flow rate were measured in isolated heart experiments. Isoproterenol (0.01 nM-1.0 µM) was administered to evaluate β-adrenergic sensitivity. We found that increases in cellular hypertrophy and myocardial collagen density in TAC were blunted in TAC + OXT animals. Inflammatory cytokine IL-1β expression was more than twice higher in TAC than all other hearts. LVDP, rate pressure product (RPP), contractility, and relaxation were depressed in TAC compared with all other groups. The response of TAC and TAC + OXT hearts to isoproterenol was blunted, with no significant increase in RPP, contractility, or relaxation. However, HR in TAC + OXT animals increased to match Control at higher doses of isoproterenol. Activation of hypothalamic OXT neurons to elevate parasympathetic tone reduced cellular hypertrophy, levels of IL-1β, and fibrosis during TAC-induced HF in rats. Cardiac contractility parameters were

  5. Age-Related Gene Expression in the Frontal Cortex Suggests Synaptic Function Changes in Specific Inhibitory Neuron Subtypes

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    Leon French

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Genome-wide expression profiling of the human brain has revealed genes that are differentially expressed across the lifespan. Characterizing these genes adds to our understanding of both normal functions and pathological conditions. Additionally, the specific cell-types that contribute to the motor, sensory and cognitive declines during aging are unclear. Here we test if age-related genes show higher expression in specific neural cell types. Our study leverages data from two sources of murine single-cell expression data and two sources of age-associations from large gene expression studies of postmortem human brain. We used nonparametric gene set analysis to test for age-related enrichment of genes associated with specific cell-types; we also restricted our analyses to specific gene ontology groups. Our analyses focused on a primary pair of single-cell expression data from the mouse visual cortex and age-related human post-mortem gene expression information from the orbitofrontal cortex. Additional pairings that used data from the hippocampus, prefrontal cortex, somatosensory cortex and blood were used to validate and test specificity of our findings. We found robust age-related up-regulation of genes that are highly expressed in oligodendrocytes and astrocytes, while genes highly expressed in layer 2/3 glutamatergic neurons were down-regulated across age. Genes not specific to any neural cell type were also down-regulated, possibly due to the bulk tissue source of the age-related genes. A gene ontology-driven dissection of the cell-type enriched genes highlighted the strong down-regulation of genes involved in synaptic transmission and cell-cell signaling in the Somatostatin (Sst neuron subtype that expresses the cyclin dependent kinase 6 (Cdk6 and in the vasoactive intestinal peptide (Vip neuron subtype expressing myosin binding protein C, slow type (Mybpc1. These findings provide new insights into cell specific susceptibility to normal aging

  6. Successful function of autologous iPSC-derived dopamine neurons following transplantation in a non-human primate model of Parkinson's disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hallett, Penelope J; Deleidi, Michela; Astradsson, Arnar

    2015-01-01

    that unilateral engraftment of CM-iPSCs could provide a gradual onset of functional motor improvement contralateral to the side of dopamine neuron transplantation, and increased motor activity, without a need for immunosuppression. Postmortem analyses demonstrated robust survival of midbrain-like dopaminergic......Autologous transplantation of patient-specific induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-derived neurons is a potential clinical approach for treatment of neurological disease. Preclinical demonstration of long-term efficacy, feasibility, and safety of iPSC-derived dopamine neurons in non-human primate...... models will be an important step in clinical development of cell therapy. Here, we analyzed cynomolgus monkey (CM) iPSC-derived midbrain dopamine neurons for up to 2 years following autologous transplantation in a Parkinson's disease (PD) model. In one animal, with the most successful protocol, we found...

  7. The neuronal correlates of mirror illusion in children with spastic hemiparesis: a study with functional magnetic resonance imaging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weisstanner, Christian; Saxer, Stefanie; Wiest, Roland; Kaelin-Lang, Alain; Newman, Christopher J; Steinlin, Maja; Grunt, Sebastian

    2017-03-21

    To investigate the neuronal activation pattern underlying the effects of mirror illusion in children/adolescents with normal motor development and in children/adolescents with hemiparesis and preserved contralateral corticospinal organisation. The type of cortical reorganisation was classified according to results of transcranial magnetic stimulation. Only subjects with congenital lesions and physiological contralateral cortical reorganisation were included. Functional magnetic resonance imaging was performed to investigate neuronal activation patterns with and without a mirror box. Each test consisted of a unimanual and a bimanual motor task. Seven children/adolescents with congenital hemiparesis (10-20 years old, three boys and four girls) and seven healthy subjects (8-17 years old, four boys and three girls) participated in this study. In the bimanual experiment, children with hemiparesis showed a significant effect of the mirror illusion (phemiparesis leads to activation of brain areas involved in visual conflict detection and cognitive control to resolve this conflict. This effect is observed only in bimanual training. We consider that for mirror therapy in children and adolescents with hemiparesis a bimanual approach is more suitable than a unimanual approach.

  8. Energy metabolism of synaptosomes from different neuronal systems of rat cerebellum during aging: a functional proteomic characterization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrari, Federica; Gorini, Antonella; Villa, Roberto Federico

    2015-01-01

    Functional proteomics was used to characterize age-related changes in energy metabolism of different neuronal pathways within the cerebellar cortex of Wistar rats aged 2, 6, 12, 18, and 24 months. The "large" synaptosomes, derived from the glutamatergic mossy fibre endings which make synaptic contact with the granule cells of the granular layer, and the "small" synaptosomes, derived from the pre-synaptic terminals of granule cells making synaptic contact with the dendrites of Purkinje cells, were isolated by a combined differential/gradient centrifugation technique. Because most brain disorders are associated with bioenergetic changes, the maximum rate (Vmax) of selected enzymes of glycolysis, Krebs' cycle, glutamate and amino acids metabolism, and acetylcholine catabolism were evaluated. The results show that "large" and "small" synaptosomes possess specific and independent metabolic features. This study represents a reliable model to study in vivo (1) the physiopathological molecular mechanisms of some brain diseases dependent on energy metabolism, (2) the responsiveness to noxious stimuli, and (3) the effects of drugs, discriminating their action sites at subcellular level on specific neuronal pathways.

  9. TNF-α protein synthesis inhibitor restores neuronal function and reverses cognitive deficits induced by chronic neuroinflammation

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    Belarbi Karim

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Chronic neuroinflammation is a hallmark of several neurological disorders associated with cognitive loss. Activated microglia and secreted factors such as tumor necrosis factor (TNF-α are key mediators of neuroinflammation and may contribute to neuronal dysfunction. Our study was aimed to evaluate the therapeutic potential of a novel analog of thalidomide, 3,6'-dithiothalidomide (DT, an agent with anti-TNF-α activity, in a model of chronic neuroinflammation. Methods Lipopolysaccharide or artificial cerebrospinal fluid was infused into the fourth ventricle of three-month-old rats for 28 days. Starting on day 29, animals received daily intraperitoneal injections of DT (56 mg/kg/day or vehicle for 14 days. Thereafter, cognitive function was assessed by novel object recognition, novel place recognition and Morris water maze, and animals were euthanized 25 min following water maze probe test evaluation. Results Chronic LPS-infusion was characterized by increased gene expression of the proinflammatory cytokines TNF-α and IL-1β in the hippocampus. Treatment with DT normalized TNF-α levels back to control levels but not IL-1β. Treatment with DT attenuated the expression of TLR2, TLR4, IRAK1 and Hmgb1, all genes involved in the TLR-mediated signaling pathway associated with classical microglia activation. However DT did not impact the numbers of MHC Class II immunoreactive cells. Chronic neuroinflammation impaired novel place recognition, spatial learning and memory function; but it did not impact novel object recognition. Importantly, treatment with DT restored cognitive function in LPS-infused animals and normalized the fraction of hippocampal neurons expressing the plasticity-related immediate-early gene Arc. Conclusion Our data demonstrate that the TNF-α synthesis inhibitor DT can significantly reverse hippocampus-dependent cognitive deficits induced by chronic neuroinflammation. These results suggest that TNF-α is a

  10. Functional cross-talk between the cellular prion protein and the neural cell adhesion molecule is critical for neuronal differentiation of neural stem/precursor cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prodromidou, Kanella; Papastefanaki, Florentia; Sklaviadis, Theodoros; Matsas, Rebecca

    2014-06-01

    Cellular prion protein (PrP) is prominently expressed in brain, in differentiated neurons but also in neural stem/precursor cells (NPCs). The misfolding of PrP is a central event in prion diseases, yet the physiological function of PrP is insufficiently understood. Although PrP has been reported to associate with the neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM), the consequences of concerted PrP-NCAM action in NPC physiology are unknown. Here, we generated NPCs from the subventricular zone (SVZ) of postnatal day 5 wild-type and PrP null (-/-) mice and observed that PrP is essential for proper NPC proliferation and neuronal differentiation. Moreover, we found that PrP is required for the NPC response to NCAM-induced neuronal differentiation. In the absence of PrP, NCAM not only fails to promote neuronal differentiation but also induces an accumulation of doublecortin-positive neuronal progenitors at the proliferation stage. In agreement, we noted an increase in cycling neuronal progenitors in the SVZ of PrP-/- mice compared with PrP+/+ mice, as evidenced by double labeling for the proliferation marker Ki67 and doublecortin as well as by 5-bromo-2'-deoxyuridine incorporation experiments. Additionally, fewer newly born neurons were detected in the rostral migratory stream of PrP-/- mice. Analysis of the migration of SVZ cells in microexplant cultures from wild-type and PrP-/- mice revealed no differences between genotypes or a role for NCAM in this process. Our data demonstrate that PrP plays a critical role in neuronal differentiation of NPCs and suggest that this function is, at least in part, NCAM-dependent. © 2014 AlphaMed Press.

  11. Osthole Stimulated Neural Stem Cells Differentiation into Neurons in an Alzheimer's Disease Cell Model via Upregulation of MicroRNA-9 and Rescued the Functional Impairment of Hippocampal Neurons in APP/PS1 Transgenic Mice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shao-Heng Li

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Alzheimer's disease (AD is the most serious neurodegenerative disease worldwide and is characterized by progressive cognitive impairment and multiple neurological changes, including neuronal loss in the brain. However, there are no available drugs to delay or cure this disease. Consequently, neuronal replacement therapy may be a strategy to treat AD. Osthole (Ost, a natural coumarin derivative, crosses the blood-brain barrier and exerts strong neuroprotective effects against AD in vitro and in vivo. Recently, microRNAs (miRNAs have demonstrated a crucial role in pathological processes of AD, implying that targeting miRNAs could be a therapeutic approach to AD. In the present study, we investigated whether Ost could enhance cell viability and prevent cell death in amyloid precursor protein (APP-expressing neural stem cells (NSCs as well as promote APP-expressing NSCs differentiation into more neurons by upregulating microRNA (miR-9 and inhibiting the Notch signaling pathway in vitro. In addition, Ost treatment in APP/PS1 double transgenic (Tg mice markedly restored cognitive functions, reduced Aβ plague production and rescued functional impairment of hippocampal neurons. The results of the present study provides evidence of the neurogenesis effects and neurobiological mechanisms of Ost against AD, suggesting that Ost is a promising drug for treatment of AD or other neurodegenerative diseases.

  12. C. elegans ciliated sensory neurons release extracellular vesicles that function in animal communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Juan; Silva, Malan; Haas, Leonard A; Morsci, Natalia S; Nguyen, Ken C Q; Hall, David H; Barr, Maureen M

    2014-03-03

    Cells release extracellular vesicles (ECVs) that play important roles in intercellular communication and may mediate a broad range of physiological and pathological processes. Many fundamental aspects of ECV biogenesis and signaling have yet to be determined, with ECV detection being a challenge and obstacle due to the small size (100 nm) of the ECVs. We developed an in vivo system to visualize the dynamic release of GFP-labeled ECVs. We show here that specific Caenorhabdidits elegans ciliated sensory neurons shed and release ECVs containing GFP-tagged polycystins LOV-1 and PKD-2. These ECVs are also abundant in the lumen surrounding the cilium. Electron tomography and genetic analysis indicate that ECV biogenesis occurs via budding from the plasma membrane at the ciliary base and not via fusion of multivesicular bodies. Intraflagellar transport and kinesin-3 KLP-6 are required for environmental release of PKD-2::GFP-containing ECVs. ECVs isolated from wild-type animals induce male tail-chasing behavior, while ECVs isolated from klp-6 animals and lacking PKD-2::GFP do not. We conclude that environmentally released ECVs play a role in animal communication and mating-related behaviors. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Curcumin Protects Neuron against Cerebral Ischemia-Induced Inflammation through Improving PPAR-Gamma Function

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    Zun-Jing Liu

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Cerebral ischemia is the most common cerebrovascular disease worldwide. Recent studies have demonstrated that curcumin had beneficial effect to attenuate cerebral ischemic injury. However, it is unclear how curcumin protects against cerebral ischemic injury. In the present study, using rat middle cerebral artery occlusion model, we found that curcumin was a potent PPARγ agonist in that it upregulated PPARγ expression and PPARγ-PPRE binding activity. Administration of curcumin markedly decreased the infarct volume, improved neurological deficits, and reduced neuronal damage of rats. In addition, curcumin suppressed neuroinflammatory response by decreasing inflammatory mediators, such as IL-1β, TNF-α, PGE2, NO, COX-2, and iNOS induced by cerebral ischemia of rats. Furthermore, curcumin suppressed IκB degradation that was caused by cerebral ischemia. The present data also showed that PPARγ interacted with NF-κB-p65 and thus inhibited NF-κB activation. All the above protective effects of curcumin on cerebral ischemic injury were markedly attenuated by GW9662, an inhibitor of PPARγ. Our results as described above suggested that PPARγ induced by curcumin may play a critical role in protecting against brain injury through suppression of inflammatory response. It also highlights the potential of curcumin as a therapeutic agent against cerebral ischemia.

  14. Somatosensory neuron types identified by high-coverage single-cell RNA-sequencing and functional heterogeneity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Chang-Lin; Li, Kai-Cheng; Wu, Dan; Chen, Yan; Luo, Hao; Zhao, Jing-Rong; Wang, Sa-Shuang; Sun, Ming-Ming; Lu, Ying-Jin; Zhong, Yan-Qing; Hu, Xu-Ye; Hou, Rui; Zhou, Bei-Bei; Bao, Lan; Xiao, Hua-Sheng; Zhang, Xu

    2016-01-01

    Sensory neurons are distinguished by distinct signaling networks and receptive characteristics. Thus, sensory neuron types can be defined by linking transcriptome-based neuron typing with the sensory phenotypes. Here we classify somatosensory neurons of the mouse dorsal root ganglion (DRG) by high-coverage single-cell RNA-sequencing (10 950 ± 1 218 genes per neuron) and neuron size-based hierarchical clustering. Moreover, single DRG neurons responding to cutaneous stimuli are recorded using an in vivo whole-cell patch clamp technique and classified by neuron-type genetic markers. Small diameter DRG neurons are classified into one type of low-threshold mechanoreceptor and five types of mechanoheat nociceptors (MHNs). Each of the MHN types is further categorized into two subtypes. Large DRG neurons are categorized into four types, including neurexophilin 1-expressing MHNs and mechanical nociceptors (MNs) expressing BAI1-associated protein 2-like 1 (Baiap2l1). Mechanoreceptors expressing trafficking protein particle complex 3-like and Baiap2l1-marked MNs are subdivided into two subtypes each. These results provide a new system for cataloging somatosensory neurons and their transcriptome databases. PMID:26691752

  15. microRNA function in left-right neuronal asymmetry: perspectives from C. elegans

    OpenAIRE

    Alqadah, Amel; Hsieh, Yi-Wen; Chuang, Chiou-Fen

    2013-01-01

    Left–right asymmetry in anatomical structures and functions of the nervous system is present throughout the animal kingdom. For example, language centers are localized in the left side of the human brain, while spatial recognition functions are found in the right hemisphere in the majority of the population. Disruption of asymmetry in the nervous system is correlated with neurological disorders. Although anatomical and functional asymmetries are observed in mammalian nervous systems, it has b...

  16. IBS, NERD and functional dyspepsia are immuno-neuronal disorders of mucosal cytokine imbalances clinically reversible with high potency sucralfate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCullough, Ricky W

    2013-03-01

    Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), non-erosive reflux disorder (NERD), and functional dyspepsia (FD) are best classified as immuno-neuronal disorders of the mucosa or functional mucosal syndromes (FMS). Each appears to be clinically reversible using high potency sucralfate (HPS). In FMS of the GI tract, postprandial nausea, altered motility, discordant peristalsis, vomiting, diarrhea, and hyperalgesia are the clinical expressions of a mucosal imbalance between pro-inflammatory cytokines of up-regulated intra-epithelial lymphocytes (IELs) and feedback anti-inflammatory cytokines tasked with moderating the antigenic response of IELs. Normal functioning GI tract requires an operative balance between pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatrory cytokines, a balance governed by locally expressed growth factors. The surface concentration of sucralfate can be enhanced 7-23-fold by suspending it in a select concentration of cations and multi-dentate cationic chelators. Increased surface concentration of sucralfate facilitates novel dose effects which include efficient activation of growth factors, quiescence of gated-nociceptor firing and resultant restoration of normal GI function. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  17. The multifaceted effects of agmatine on functional recovery after spinal cord injury through Modulations of BMP-2/4/7 expressions in neurons and glial cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yu Mi Park

    Full Text Available Presently, few treatments for spinal cord injury (SCI are available and none have facilitated neural regeneration and/or significant functional improvement. Agmatine (Agm, a guanidinium compound formed from decarboxylation of L-arginine by arginine decarboxylase, is a neurotransmitter/neuromodulator and been reported to exert neuroprotective effects in central nervous system injury models including SCI. The purpose of this study was to demonstrate the multifaceted effects of Agm on functional recovery and remyelinating events following SCI. Compression SCI in mice was produced by placing a 15 g/mm(2 weight for 1 min at thoracic vertebra (Th 9 segment. Mice that received an intraperitoneal (i.p. injection of Agm (100 mg/kg/day within 1 hour after SCI until 35 days showed improvement in locomotor recovery and bladder function. Emphasis was made on the analysis of remyelination events, neuronal cell preservation and ablation of glial scar area following SCI. Agm treatment significantly inhibited the demyelination events, neuronal loss and glial scar around the lesion site. In light of recent findings that expressions of bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs are modulated in the neuronal and glial cell population after SCI, we hypothesized whether Agm could modulate BMP- 2/4/7 expressions in neurons, astrocytes, oligodendrocytes and play key role in promoting the neuronal and glial cell survival in the injured spinal cord. The results from computer assisted stereological toolbox analysis (CAST demonstrate that Agm treatment dramatically increased BMP- 2/7 expressions in neurons and oligodendrocytes. On the other hand, BMP- 4 expressions were significantly decreased in astrocytes and oligodendrocytes around the lesion site. Together, our results reveal that Agm treatment improved neurological and histological outcomes, induced oligodendrogenesis, protected neurons, and decreased glial scar formation through modulating the BMP- 2/4/7 expressions following

  18. The Multifaceted Effects of Agmatine on Functional Recovery after Spinal Cord Injury through Modulations of BMP-2/4/7 Expressions in Neurons and Glial Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Yu Mi; Lee, Won Taek; Bokara, Kiran Kumar; Seo, Su Kyoung; Park, Seung Hwa; Kim, Jae Hwan; Yenari, Midori A.; Park, Kyung Ah; Lee, Jong Eun

    2013-01-01

    Presently, few treatments for spinal cord injury (SCI) are available and none have facilitated neural regeneration and/or significant functional improvement. Agmatine (Agm), a guanidinium compound formed from decarboxylation of L-arginine by arginine decarboxylase, is a neurotransmitter/neuromodulator and been reported to exert neuroprotective effects in central nervous system injury models including SCI. The purpose of this study was to demonstrate the multifaceted effects of Agm on functional recovery and remyelinating events following SCI. Compression SCI in mice was produced by placing a 15 g/mm2 weight for 1 min at thoracic vertebra (Th) 9 segment. Mice that received an intraperitoneal (i.p.) injection of Agm (100 mg/kg/day) within 1 hour after SCI until 35 days showed improvement in locomotor recovery and bladder function. Emphasis was made on the analysis of remyelination events, neuronal cell preservation and ablation of glial scar area following SCI. Agm treatment significantly inhibited the demyelination events, neuronal loss and glial scar around the lesion site. In light of recent findings that expressions of bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) are modulated in the neuronal and glial cell population after SCI, we hypothesized whether Agm could modulate BMP- 2/4/7 expressions in neurons, astrocytes, oligodendrocytes and play key role in promoting the neuronal and glial cell survival in the injured spinal cord. The results from computer assisted stereological toolbox analysis (CAST) demonstrate that Agm treatment dramatically increased BMP- 2/7 expressions in neurons and oligodendrocytes. On the other hand, BMP- 4 expressions were significantly decreased in astrocytes and oligodendrocytes around the lesion site. Together, our results reveal that Agm treatment improved neurological and histological outcomes, induced oligodendrogenesis, protected neurons, and decreased glial scar formation through modulating the BMP- 2/4/7 expressions following SCI. PMID

  19. IGF-1 delivery to CNS attenuates motor neuron cell death but does not improve motor function in type III SMA mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsai, Li-Kai; Chen, Yi-Chun; Cheng, Wei-Cheng; Ting, Chen-Hung; Dodge, James C; Hwu, Wuh-Liang; Cheng, Seng H; Passini, Marco A

    2012-01-01

    The efficacy of administering a recombinant adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector encoding human IGF-1 (AAV2/1-hIGF-1) into the deep cerebellar nucleus (DCN) of a type III SMA mouse model was evaluated. High levels of IGF-1 transcripts and protein were detected in the spinal cord at 2 months post-injection demonstrating that axonal connections between the cerebellum and spinal cord were able to act as conduits for the viral vector and protein to the spinal cord. Mice treated with AAV2/1-hIGF-1 and analyzed 8 months later showed changes in endogenous Bax and Bcl-xl levels in spinal cord motor neurons that were consistent with IGF-1-mediated anti-apoptotic effects on motor neurons. However, although AAV2/1-hIGF-1 treatment reduced the extent of motor neuron cell death, the majority of rescued motor neurons were non-functional, as they lacked axons that innervated the muscles. Furthermore, treated SMA mice exhibited abnormal muscle fibers, aberrant neuromuscular junction structure, and impaired performance on motor function tests. These data indicate that although CNS-directed expression of IGF-1 could reduce motor neuron cell death, this did not translate to improvements in motor function in an adult mouse model of type III SMA. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. In Vivo Neuromechanics : Decoding Causal Motor Neuron Behavior with Resulting Musculoskeletal Function

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sartori, Massimo; Yavuz, Utku; Farina, Dario

    2017-01-01

    Human motor function emerges from the interaction between the neuromuscular and the musculoskeletal systems. Despite the knowledge of the mechanisms underlying neural and mechanical functions, there is no relevant understanding of the neuro-mechanical interplay in the neuro-musculo-skeletal system.

  1. A 3D nanofibrous hydrogel and collagen sponge scaffold promotes locomotor functional recovery, spinal repair, and neuronal regeneration after complete transection of the spinal cord in adult rats

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kaneko, Ai; Matsushita, Akira; Sankai, Yoshiyuki

    2015-01-01

    Central nervous system neurons in adult mammals display limited regeneration after injury, and functional recovery is poor following complete transection (>4 mm gap) of a rat spinal cord. A novel combination scaffold composed of 3D nanofibrous hydrogel PuraMatrix and a honeycomb collagen sponge was used to promote spinal repair and locomotor functional recovery following complete transection of the spinal cord in rats. We transplanted this scaffold into 5 mm spinal cord gaps and assessed spinal repair and functional recovery using the Basso, Beattie, and Bresnahan (BBB) locomotor scale. The BBB score of the scaffold-transplanted group was significantly higher than that of the PBS-injected control group from 24 d to 4 months after the operation (P < 0.001–0.01), reaching 6.0  ±  0.75 (mean ± SEM) in the transplant and 0.70  ±  0.46 in the control groups. Neuronal regeneration and spinal repair were examined histologically using Pan Neuronal Marker, glial fibrillary acidic protein, growth-associated protein 43, and DAPI. The scaffolds were well integrated into the spinal cords, filling the 5 mm gaps with higher numbers of regenerated and migrated neurons, astrocytes, and other cells than in the control group. Mature and immature neurons and astrocytes in the scaffolds became colocalized and aligned longitudinally over >2 mm, suggesting their differentiation, maturation, and function. The spinal cord NF200 content of the transplant group, analyzed by western blot, was more than twice that of the control group, supporting the histological results. Transplantation of this novel scaffold promoted functional recovery, spinal repair, and neuronal regeneration. (paper)

  2. Use of I-123 MIBG cardiac scintigraphy to assess the impact of carvedilol on cardiac adrenergic neuronal function in childhood dilated cardiomyopathy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Maunoury, C.; Acar, P.; Sidi, D.

    2006-01-01

    I-123 MIBG cardiac scintigraphy is a useful tool to assess cardiac adrenergic neuronal function, which is impaired in children with dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM). In adults with DCM, long-term treatment with carvedilol improves both cardiac adrenergic neuronal function and left ventricular function. The aim of this prospective study was to evaluate the impact of carvedilol on cardiac adrenergic neuronal function and on left ventricular function in seventeen patients (11 female, 6 male, mean age 39 ± 57 months, range 1 - 168 months) with DCM. All patients underwent I-123 MIBG cardiac scintigraphy and equilibrium radio-nuclide angiography before and after a 6 month period of carvedilol therapy. A static anterior view of the chest was acquired 4 hours after intravenous injection of 20 to 75 MBq of I-123 MIBG. Cardiac neuronal uptake of I-123 MIBG was measured using the heart to mediastinum count ratio (HMR). Radionuclide left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) was assessed following a standard protocol. There was no major cardiac events (death or transplantation) during the follow-up period. I-123 MIBG cardiac uptake and left ventricular function respectively increased by 38% and 65% after 6 months of treatment with carvedilol (HMR 223 ± 49% vs 162 ± 26%, p < 0.0001 and LVEF = 43 ± 17% vs 26 ± 11%, p < 0.0001). Carvedilol can improve cardiac adrenergic neuronal function and left ventricular function in children with DCM. Further studies are needed to assess the relationship between improvement in I-123 MIBG cardiac uptake and the beneficial effects of carvedilol on morbidity and mortality. (authors)

  3. Phospholipase A2 – nexus of aging, oxidative stress, neuronal excitability, and functional decline of the aging nervous system? Insights from a snail model system of neuronal aging and age-associated memory impairment

    OpenAIRE

    Hermann, Petra M.; Watson, Shawn N.; Wildering, Willem C.

    2014-01-01

    TThe aging brain can undergo a range of changes varying from subtle structural and physiological changes causing only minor functional decline under healthy normal aging conditions, to severe cognitive or neurological impairment associated with extensive loss of neurons and circuits due to age-associated neurodegenerative disease conditions. Understanding how biological aging processes affect the brain and how they contribute to the onset and progress of age-associated neurodegenerative disea...

  4. Effects of chronic alcohol consumption on neuronal function in the non-human primate BNST

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alterations in hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal axis function contribute to many of the adverse behavioral effects of chronic voluntary alcohol drinking, including alcohol dependence and mood disorders; limbic brain structures such as the bed nucleus of the stria termin...

  5. Use of {sup 123}I-MIBG scintigraphy to assess the impact of carvedilol on cardiac adrenergic neuronal function in childhood dilated cardiomyopathy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Maunoury, Christophe [Service de Medecine Nucleaire, Hopital Necker-Enfants Malades, 149 rue de Sevres, 75743, Paris Cedex 15 (France); Acar, Philippe; Sidi, Daniel [Service de Cardiologie Pediatrique, Hopital Necker-Enfants Malades, Paris (France)

    2003-12-01

    Iodine-123 metaiodobenzylguanidine (MIBG) cardiac scintigraphy is a useful tool for the assessment of cardiac adrenergic neuronal function, which is impaired in children with idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM). In adults with DCM, long-term treatment with carvedilol improves both cardiac adrenergic neuronal function and left ventricular function. The aim of this prospective study was to evaluate the impact of carvedilol on cardiac adrenergic neuronal function using {sup 123}I-MIBG scintigraphy and on left ventricular function using equilibrium radionuclide angiography in children with DCM. Seventeen patients (11 female, six male; mean age 39{+-}57 months, range 1-168 months) with DCM and left ventricular dysfunction underwent {sup 123}I-MIBG cardiac scintigraphy and equilibrium radionuclide angiography before and after a 6-month period of carvedilol therapy. A static anterior view of the chest was acquired 4 h after intravenous injection of 20-75 MBq of {sup 123}I-MIBG. Cardiac neuronal uptake of {sup 123}I-MIBG was measured using the heart to mediastinum count ratio (HMR). Radionuclide left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) was assessed following a standard protocol. MIBG cardiac uptake and left ventricular function respectively increased by 38% and 65% after 6 months of treatment with carvedilol (HMR=223%{+-}49% vs 162%{+-}26%, P<0.0001, and LVEF=43%{+-}17% vs 26%{+-}11%, P<0.0001). Carvedilol can improve cardiac adrenergic neuronal and left ventricular function in children with dilated cardiomyopathy. Further studies are needed to assess the relationship between improvement in MIBG cardiac uptake and the beneficial effects of carvedilol on morbidity and mortality. (orig.)

  6. Use of 123I-MIBG scintigraphy to assess the impact of carvedilol on cardiac adrenergic neuronal function in childhood dilated cardiomyopathy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Maunoury, Christophe; Acar, Philippe; Sidi, Daniel

    2003-01-01

    Iodine-123 metaiodobenzylguanidine (MIBG) cardiac scintigraphy is a useful tool for the assessment of cardiac adrenergic neuronal function, which is impaired in children with idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM). In adults with DCM, long-term treatment with carvedilol improves both cardiac adrenergic neuronal function and left ventricular function. The aim of this prospective study was to evaluate the impact of carvedilol on cardiac adrenergic neuronal function using 123 I-MIBG scintigraphy and on left ventricular function using equilibrium radionuclide angiography in children with DCM. Seventeen patients (11 female, six male; mean age 39±57 months, range 1-168 months) with DCM and left ventricular dysfunction underwent 123 I-MIBG cardiac scintigraphy and equilibrium radionuclide angiography before and after a 6-month period of carvedilol therapy. A static anterior view of the chest was acquired 4 h after intravenous injection of 20-75 MBq of 123 I-MIBG. Cardiac neuronal uptake of 123 I-MIBG was measured using the heart to mediastinum count ratio (HMR). Radionuclide left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) was assessed following a standard protocol. MIBG cardiac uptake and left ventricular function respectively increased by 38% and 65% after 6 months of treatment with carvedilol (HMR=223%±49% vs 162%±26%, P<0.0001, and LVEF=43%±17% vs 26%±11%, P<0.0001). Carvedilol can improve cardiac adrenergic neuronal and left ventricular function in children with dilated cardiomyopathy. Further studies are needed to assess the relationship between improvement in MIBG cardiac uptake and the beneficial effects of carvedilol on morbidity and mortality. (orig.)

  7. Lesion of the locus coeruleus aggravates dopaminergic neuron degeneration by modulating microglial function in mouse models of Parkinson׳s disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yao, Ning; Wu, Yanhong; Zhou, Yan; Ju, Lili; Liu, Yujun; Ju, Rongkai; Duan, Deyi; Xu, Qunyuan

    2015-11-02

    The degeneration of noradrenergic neurons in the locus coeruleus (LC) commonly occurs in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD), which is characterized by a selective injury of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra (SN). The pathological impact of the LC on the SN in the disease is unknown. In the present study, we used a noradrenergic toxin, N-(2-chloroethyl)-N-ethyl-2-bromobenzylamine (DSP4), to deplete noradrenaline (NA) derived from the LC to explore its influence on degeneration or injury of dopaminergic neurons in the SN in mouse model produced by intraperitoneal injection of 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) or lipopolysaccharide (LPS). Our results demonstrated that lesion of the LC could change microglial function in the brain, which led to enhanced or prolonged expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines, diminished neurotrophic factors, and weakened ability of anti-oxidation in the SN. The in vitro experiments further confirmed that NA could reduce the inflammatory reaction of microglia. The selective injury of dopaminergic neurons by inflammation, however, was due to the inflammation in different brain regions rather than the depletion of NA. Our results indicate that the lesion in the LC is an important factor in promoting dopaminergic neuron degeneration by impacting the function of microglia in the midbrain. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Mild hypothermia protects hippocampal neurons against oxygen-glucose deprivation/reperfusion-induced injury by improving lysosomal function and autophagic flux.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Tianen; Liang, Lian; Liang, Yanran; Yu, Tao; Zeng, Chaotao; Jiang, Longyuan

    2017-09-15

    Mild hypothermia has been proven to be useful to treat brain ischemia/reperfusion injury. However, the underlying mechanisms have not yet been fully elucidated. The present study was undertaken to determine whether mild hypothermia protects hippocampal neurons against oxygen-glucose deprivation/reperfusion(OGD/R)-induced injury via improving lysosomal function and autophagic flux. The results showed that OGD/R induced the occurrence of autophagy, while the acidic environment inside the lysosomes was altered. The autophagic flux assay with RFP-GFP tf-LC3 was impeded in hippocampal neurons after OGD/R. Mild hypothermia recovered the lysosomal acidic fluorescence and the lysosomal marker protein expression of LAMP2, which decreased after OGD/R.Furthermore, we found that mild hypothermia up-regulated autophagic flux and promoted the fusion of autophagosomes and lysosomes in hippocampal neurons following OGD/R injury, but could be reversed by treatment with chloroquine, which acts as a lysosome inhibitor. We also found that mild hypothermia improved mitochondrial autophagy in hippocampal neurons following OGD/R injury. Finally,we found that chloroquine blocked the protective effects of mild hypothermia against OGD/R-induced cell death and injury. Taken together, the present study indicates that mild hypothermia protects hippocampal neurons against OGD/R-induced injury by improving lysosomal function and autophagic flux. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  9. microRNA function in left-right neuronal asymmetry: perspectives from C. elegans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alqadah, Amel; Hsieh, Yi-Wen; Chuang, Chiou-Fen

    2013-09-23

    Left-right asymmetry in anatomical structures and functions of the nervous system is present throughout the animal kingdom. For example, language centers are localized in the left side of the human brain, while spatial recognition functions are found in the right hemisphere in the majority of the population. Disruption of asymmetry in the nervous system is correlated with neurological disorders. Although anatomical and functional asymmetries are observed in mammalian nervous systems, it has been a challenge to identify the molecular basis of these asymmetries. C. elegans has emerged as a prime model organism to investigate molecular asymmetries in the nervous system, as it has been shown to display functional asymmetries clearly correlated to asymmetric distribution and regulation of biologically relevant molecules. Small non-coding RNAs have been recently implicated in various aspects of neural development. Here, we review cases in which microRNAs are crucial for establishing left-right asymmetries in the C. elegans nervous system. These studies may provide insight into how molecular and functional asymmetries are established in the human brain.

  10. microRNA function in left-right neuronal asymmetry: perspectives from C. elegans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amel eAlqadah

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Left-right asymmetry in anatomical structures and functions of the nervous system is present throughout the animal kingdom. For example, language centers are localized in the left side of the human brain, while spatial recognition functions are found in the right hemisphere in the majority of the population. Disruption of asymmetry in the nervous system is correlated with neurological disorders. Although anatomical and functional asymmetries are observed in mammalian nervous systems, it has been a challenge to identify the molecular basis of these asymmetries. C. elegans has emerged as a prime model organism to investigate molecular asymmetries in the nervous system, as it has been shown to display functional asymmetries clearly correlated to asymmetric distribution and regulation of biologically relevant molecules. Small non-coding RNAs have been recently implicated in various aspects of neural development. Here, we review cases in which microRNAs are crucial for establishing left-right asymmetries in the C. elegans nervous system. These studies may provide insight into how molecular and functional asymmetries are established in the human brain.

  11. Influence of electroencephalograph bionic electrical stimulation on neuronal activities in patients with Alzheimer's disease: A functional magnetic resonance imaging study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liling Jiang

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: To investigate the influence of electroencephalograph bionic electrical stimulation on neuronal activity in patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD using resting-state blood oxygen level dependent functional MRI (BOLD-fMRI and amplitude of low-frequency fluctuation (ALFF and fraction ALFF (fALFF analysis. Methods: 42 AD patients were divided into two groups in accordance with the randomized double blind principle, every group was 21. Treatment group received electroencephalograph bionic electrical stimulation. Both groups received resting-state BOLD-fMRI scanning before and after treatment and comparing differences in ALFF and fALFF in each group by statistical methods. Correlation analysis was performed between ALFF or fALFF images and neuropsychological tests scale after treatment. Results: Post-therapy brain regions with higher ALFF included left cerebellum posterior lobe, right cerebellum posterior lobe, left hippocampus/parahippocampus, left posterior cingulated cortex, left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, right inferior parietal lobule in treatment group. Higher fALFF was observed in the right inferior parietal lobule. In the placebo group lower ALFF was observed in bilateral cerebellum posterior lobe and left posterior cingulated cortex. Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale-Cognitive section was closely correlated with ALFF in left cerebellum posterior lobe and right cerebellum posterior lobe. Conclusion: These results indicated improved neuronal activity in some brain areas could be achieved in AD after treatment of electroencephalograph bionic electrical stimulation. The change of BOLD-fMRI signal might provide a potential imaging strategy for studying neural mechanisms of electroencephalograph bionic electrical stimulation for AD. Keywords: Electroencephalograph bionic electrical stimulation, Alzheimer's disease, Low-frequency fluctuation, Fraction low-frequency fluctuation

  12. Super-resolution microscopy reveals functional organization of dopamine transporters into cholesterol and neuronal activity-dependent nanodomains

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rahbek-Clemmensen, Troels; Lycas, Matthew D.; Erlendsson, Simon

    2017-01-01

    is dynamically sequestrated into cholesterol-dependent nanodomains in the plasma membrane of presynaptic varicosities and neuronal projections of dopaminergic neurons. Stochastic optical reconstruction microscopy reveals irregular dopamine transporter nanodomains (∼70 nm mean diameter) that were highly sensitive...... to cholesterol depletion. Live photoactivated localization microscopy shows a similar dopamine transporter membrane organization in live heterologous cells. In neurons, dual-color dSTORM shows that tyrosine hydroxylase and vesicular monoamine transporter-2 are distinctively localized adjacent to...

  13. MicroRNAs: not ‘fine-tuners’ but key regulators of neuronal development and function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gregory eDavis

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available microRNAs (miRNAs are a class of short non-coding RNAs that operate as prominent post-transcriptional regulators of eukaryotic gene expression. miRNAs are abundantly expressed in the brain of most animals and exert diverse roles. The anatomical and functional complexity of brain requires the precise coordination of multi-layered gene regulatory networks. The flexibility, speed and reversibility of miRNA function provide precise temporal and spatial gene regulatory capabilities that are crucial for the correct functioning of the brain. Studies have shown that the underlying molecular mechanisms controlled by miRNAs in the nervous systems of invertebrate and vertebrate models are remarkably conserved in humans. We endeavour to provide insight into the roles of miRNAs in the nervous systems of these model organisms and discuss how such information may be used to inform regarding diseases of the human brain.

  14. Genetic modifiers of comatose mutations in Drosophila: insights into neuronal NSF (N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive fusion factor) functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanyal, Subhabrata; Krishnan, K S

    2012-09-01

    By the middle of the 20th century, development of powerful genetic approaches had ensured that the fruit fly would remain a model organism of choice for genetic and developmental studies. But in the 1970s, a few pioneering groups turned their attention to the prospect of using the fly for neurophysiological experiments. They proposed that in a poikilothermic organism such as Drosophila, temperature-sensitive or "ts" mutations in proteins that controlled nerve function would translate to a "ts" paralytic phenotype. This was by no means an obvious or even a likely assumption. However, following directed screens these groups soon reported dramatic demonstrations of reversible ts paralysis in fly mutants. Resultantly, these "simple" experiments led to the isolation of a number of conditional mutations including shibire, paralytic, and comatose. All have since been cloned and have enabled deep mechanistic insights into synaptic transmission and nerve conduction. comatose (comt) mutations, for example, were found to map to missense changes in dNSF1, a neuron-specific fly homolog of mammalian NSF (N-ethylmaleimide-sensitive fusion factor). Studies on comt were also some of the first to discriminate between nuanced models of NSF function during presynaptic transmitter release that have since been borne out by experiments in multiple preparations. Here, the authors present an overview of NSF function as it is understood today, with an emphasis on contributions from Drosophila beginning with experiments carried out by Obaid Siddiqi in the Benzer laboratory. The authors also outline initial results from a genetic screen for phenotypic modifiers of comt that hold the promise of further elucidating NSF function at the synapse. Over the years, the neuromuscular system of Drosophila has served as a uniquely accessible model to unravel mechanisms underlying synaptic transmission. To this day, ts paralysis remains one of the most emphatic demonstrations of nerve function in an

  15. Dynamic changes in dopamine neuron function after DNSP-11 treatment: effects in vivo and increased ERK 1/2 phosphorylation in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuqua, Joshua L; Littrell, Ofelia M; Lundblad, Martin; Turchan-Cholewo, Jadwiga; Abdelmoti, Lina G; Galperin, Emilia; Bradley, Luke H; Cass, Wayne A; Gash, Don M; Gerhardt, Greg A

    2014-04-01

    Glial cell-line derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) has demonstrated robust effects on dopamine (DA) neuron function and survival. A post-translational processing model of the human GDNF proprotein theorizes the formation of smaller, amidated peptide(s) from the proregion that exhibit neurobiological function, including an 11-amino-acid peptide named dopamine neuron stimulating peptide-11 (DNSP-11). A single treatment of DNSP-11 was delivered to the substantia nigra in the rat to investigate effects on DA-neuron function. Four weeks after treatment, potassium (K+) and D-amphetamine evoked DA release were studied in the striatum using microdialysis. There were no significant changes in DA-release after DNSP-11 treatment determined by microdialysis. Dopamine release was further examined in discrete regions of the striatum using high-speed chronoamperometry at 1-, 2-, and 4-weeks after DNSP-11 treatment. Two weeks after DNSP-11 treatment, potassium-evoked DA release was increased in specific subregions of the striatum. However, spontaneous locomotor activity was unchanged by DNSP-11 treatment. In addition, we show that a single treatment of DNSP-11 in the MN9D dopaminergic neuronal cell line results in phosphorylation of ERK1/2, which suggests a novel cellular mechanism responsible for increases in DA function. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Functional Reintegration of Sensory Neurons and Transitional Dendritic Reduction of Mitral/Tufted Cells during Injury-Induced Recovery of the Larval Xenopus Olfactory Circuit

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara J. Hawkins

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Understanding the mechanisms involved in maintaining lifelong neurogenesis has a clear biological and clinical interest. In the present study, we performed olfactory nerve transection on larval Xenopus to induce severe damage to the olfactory circuitry. We surveyed the timing of the degeneration, subsequent rewiring and functional regeneration of the olfactory system following injury. A range of structural labeling techniques and functional calcium imaging were performed on both tissue slices and whole brain preparations. Cell death of olfactory receptor neurons and proliferation of stem cells in the olfactory epithelium were immediately increased following lesion. New olfactory receptor neurons repopulated the olfactory epithelium and once again showed functional responses to natural odorants within 1 week after transection. Reinnervation of the olfactory bulb (OB by newly formed olfactory receptor neuron axons also began at this time. Additionally, we observed a temporary increase in cell death in the OB and a subsequent loss in OB volume. Mitral/tufted cells, the second order neurons of the olfactory system, largely survived, but transiently lost dendritic tuft complexity. The first odorant-induced responses in the OB were observed 3 weeks after nerve transection and the olfactory network showed signs of major recovery, both structurally and functionally, after 7 weeks.

  17. Changes in hippocampal neurons and memory function during the developmental stage of newborn rats with hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Chuanjun Liu; Yue Li; Huiying Gao

    2006-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Under the normal circumstance, there exist some synapses with inactive functions in central nervous system (CNS), but these functions are activated following nerve injury. At the early stage of brain injury, the abnormal functions of brain are varied, and they have very strong plasticity and are corrected easily.OBJECTTVE: To observe the changes of neuronal morphology in hippocampal CA1 region and memory function in newborn rats with hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy(HIE) from ischemia 6 hours to adult.DESTGN: Completely randomized grouping, controlled experiment.SETTING: Taian Health Center for Women and Children; Taishan Medical College.MATERTALS: Altogether 120 seven-day-old Wistar rats, of clean grade, were provided by the Experimental Animal Center, Shandong University of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Synaptophysin (SYN) polyclonal antibody was provided by Maixin Biological Company, Fuzhou.METHODS: This experiment was carried out in the Laboratory of Morphology, Taishan Medical College between October 2000 and December 2003. ① The newborn rats were randomly divided into 2 groups: model group and control group, 60 rats in each group. Five rats were chosen from each group at postoperative 6 hours, 24hours, 72 hours, 7 days, 2 weeks and 3 weeks separately for immunohistochemical staining. Fifteen newborn rats were chosen from each group at postoperative 4 weeks and 2 months separately for testing memory ability(After test, 5 rats from each group were sacrificed and used for immunohistochemical staining) ② The right common carotid artery of newborn rats of model group was ligated under the sthetized status. After two hours of incubation, the rats were placed for 2 hours in a container filled with nitrogen oxygen atmosphere containing 0.08 volume fraction of oxygen, thus, HIE models were created; As for the newborn rats in the control group, only blood vessels were isolated, and they were not ligated and hypoxia-treated. ③Thalamencephal tissue

  18. Heavy Chronic Ethanol Exposure From Adolescence to Adulthood Induces Cerebellar Neuronal Loss and Motor Function Damage in Female Rats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fernando B. R. da Silva

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Over the last years, heavy ethanol consumption by teenagers/younger adults has increased considerably among females. However, few studies have addressed the long-term impact on brain structures’ morphology and function of chronic exposure to high ethanol doses from adolescence to adulthood in females. In line with this idea, in the current study we investigated whether heavy chronic ethanol exposure during adolescence to adulthood may induce motor impairments and morphological and cellular alterations in the cerebellum of female rats. Adolescent female Wistar rats (35 days old were treated with distilled water or ethanol (6.5 g/kg/day, 22.5% w/v during 55 days by gavage. At 90 days of age, motor function of animals was assessed using open field (OF, pole, beam walking and rotarod tests. Following completion of behavioral tests, morphological and immunohistochemical analyses of the cerebellum were performed. Chronic ethanol exposure impaired significantly motor performance of female rats, inducing spontaneous locomotor activity deficits, bradykinesia, incoordination and motor learning disruption. Moreover, histological analysis revealed that ethanol exposure induced atrophy and neuronal loss in the cerebellum. These findings indicate that heavy ethanol exposure during adolescence is associated with long-lasting cerebellar degeneration and motor impairments in female rats.

  19. Anticonvulsants Based on the α-Substituted Amide Group Pharmacophore Bind to and Inhibit Function of Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krivoshein, Arcadius V

    2016-03-16

    Although the antiepileptic properties of α-substituted lactams, acetamides, and cyclic imides have been known for over 60 years, the mechanism by which they act remains unclear. I report here that these compounds bind to the nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) and inhibit its function. Using transient kinetic measurements with functionally active, nondesensitized receptors, I have discovered that (i) α-substituted lactams and cyclic imides are noncompetitive inhibitors of heteromeric subtypes (such as α4β2 and α3β4) of neuronal nAChRs and (ii) the binding affinity of these compounds toward the nAChR correlates with their potency in preventing maximal electroshock (MES)-induced convulsions in mice. Based on the hypothesis that α-substituted amide group is the essential pharmacophore of these drugs, I found and tested a simple compound, 2-phenylbutyramide. This compound indeed inhibits nAChR and shows good anticonvulsant activity in mice. Molecular docking simulations suggest that α-substituted lactams, acetamides, and cyclic imides bind to the same sites on the extracellular domain of the receptor. These new findings indicate that inhibition of brain nAChRs may play an important role in the action of these antiepileptic drugs, a role that has not been previously recognized.

  20. Signed language and human action processing: evidence for functional constraints on the human mirror-neuron system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corina, David P; Knapp, Heather Patterson

    2008-12-01

    In the quest to further understand the neural underpinning of human communication, researchers have turned to studies of naturally occurring signed languages used in Deaf communities. The comparison of the commonalities and differences between spoken and signed languages provides an opportunity to determine core neural systems responsible for linguistic communication independent of the modality in which a language is expressed. The present article examines such studies, and in addition asks what we can learn about human languages by contrasting formal visual-gestural linguistic systems (signed languages) with more general human action perception. To understand visual language perception, it is important to distinguish the demands of general human motion processing from the highly task-dependent demands associated with extracting linguistic meaning from arbitrary, conventionalized gestures. This endeavor is particularly important because theorists have suggested close homologies between perception and production of actions and functions of human language and social communication. We review recent behavioral, functional imaging, and neuropsychological studies that explore dissociations between the processing of human actions and signed languages. These data suggest incomplete overlap between the mirror-neuron systems proposed to mediate human action and language.

  1. An ancient duplication of exon 5 in the Snap25 gene is required for complex neuronal development/function.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jenny U Johansson

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available Alternative splicing is an evolutionary innovation to create functionally diverse proteins from a limited number of genes. SNAP-25 plays a central role in neuroexocytosis by bridging synaptic vesicles to the plasma membrane during regulated exocytosis. The SNAP-25 polypeptide is encoded by a single copy gene, but in higher vertebrates a duplication of exon 5 has resulted in two mutually exclusive splice variants, SNAP-25a and SNAP-25b. To address a potential physiological difference between the two SNAP-25 proteins, we generated gene targeted SNAP-25b deficient mouse mutants by replacing the SNAP-25b specific exon with a second SNAP-25a equivalent. Elimination of SNAP-25b expression resulted in developmental defects, spontaneous seizures, and impaired short-term synaptic plasticity. In adult mutants, morphological changes in hippocampus and drastically altered neuropeptide expression were accompanied by severe impairment of spatial learning. We conclude that the ancient exon duplication in the Snap25 gene provides additional SNAP-25-function required for complex neuronal processes in higher eukaryotes.

  2. Inefficient skeletal muscle oxidative function flanks impaired motor neuron recruitment in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis during exercise.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lanfranconi, F; Ferri, A; Corna, G; Bonazzi, R; Lunetta, C; Silani, V; Riva, N; Rigamonti, A; Maggiani, A; Ferrarese, C; Tremolizzo, L

    2017-06-07

    This study aimed to evaluate muscle oxidative function during exercise in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis patients (pALS) with non-invasive methods in order to assess if determinants of reduced exercise tolerance might match ALS clinical heterogeneity. 17 pALS, who were followed for 4 months, were compared with 13 healthy controls (CTRL). Exercise tolerance was assessed by an incremental exercise test on cycle ergometer measuring peak O 2 uptake ([Formula: see text]O 2peak ), vastus lateralis oxidative function by near infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) and breathing pattern ([Formula: see text]E peak ). pALS displayed: (1) 44% lower [Formula: see text]O 2peak vs. CTRL (p motor units recruitment, is a major determinant of pALS clinical heterogeneity and working capacity exercise tolerance. CPET and NIRS are useful tools for detecting early stages of oxidative deficiency in skeletal muscles, disclosing individual impairments in the O 2 transport and utilization chain.

  3. Striatal Function Explored Through a Biophysical Model of a Medium Spiny Neuron

    OpenAIRE

    Guthrie, Martin

    2006-01-01

    The basal ganglia are a dynamic neural network of telencephalic subcortical nuclei, involved in adaptive control of behaviour. There has been much experimental evidence on the anatomy and physiology of the basal ganglia published over the last 25 years showing that the basal ganglia are involved in the learning of many adaptive behaviours, including motor planning, working memory and cognitive functions. Current qualitative basal ganglia models of the box and arrow type, whi...

  4. Protein kinase inhibitor peptide (PKI): a family of endogenous neuropeptides that modulate neuronal cAMP-dependent protein kinase function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dalton, George D; Dewey, William L

    2006-02-01

    Signal transduction cascades involving cAMP-dependent protein kinase are highly conserved among a wide variety of organisms. Given the universal nature of this enzyme it is not surprising that cAMP-dependent protein kinase plays a critical role in numerous cellular processes. This is particularly evident in the nervous system where cAMP-dependent protein kinase is involved in neurotransmitter release, gene transcription, and synaptic plasticity. Protein kinase inhibitor peptide (PKI) is an endogenous thermostable peptide that modulates cAMP-dependent protein kinase function. PKI contains two distinct functional domains within its amino acid sequence that allow it to: (1) potently and specifically inhibit the activity of the free catalytic subunit of cAMP-dependent protein kinase and (2) export the free catalytic subunit of cAMP-dependent protein kinase from the nucleus. Three distinct PKI isoforms (PKIalpha, PKIbeta, PKIgamma) have been identified and each isoform is expressed in the brain. PKI modulates neuronal synaptic activity, while PKI also is involved in morphogenesis and symmetrical left-right axis formation. In addition, PKI also plays a role in regulating gene expression induced by cAMP-dependent protein kinase. Future studies should identify novel physiological functions for endogenous PKI both in the nervous system and throughout the body. Most interesting will be the determination whether functional differences exist between individual PKI isoforms which is an intriguing possibility since these isoforms exhibit: (1) cell-type specific tissue expression patterns, (2) different potencies for the inhibition of cAMP-dependent protein kinase activity, and (3) expression patterns that are hormonally, developmentally and cell-cycle regulated. Finally, synthetic peptide analogs of endogenous PKI will continue to be invaluable tools that are used to elucidate the role of cAMP-dependent protein kinase in a variety of cellular processes throughout the nervous

  5. Cross-species functional analyses reveal shared and separate roles for Sox11 in frog primary neurogenesis and mouse cortical neuronal differentiation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chao Chen

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available A well-functioning brain requires production of the correct number and types of cells during development; cascades of transcription factors are essential for cellular coordination. Sox proteins are transcription factors that affect various processes in the development of the nervous system. Sox11, a member of the SoxC family, is expressed in differentiated neurons and supports neuronal differentiation in several systems. To understand how generalizable the actions of Sox11 are across phylogeny, its function in the development of the frog nervous system and the mouse cerebral cortex were compared. Expression of Sox11 is largely conserved between these species; in the developing frog, Sox11 is expressed in the neural plate, neural tube and throughout the segmented brain, while in the mouse cerebral cortex, Sox11 is expressed in differentiated zones, including the preplate, subplate, marginal zone and cortical plate. In both frog and mouse, data demonstrate that Sox11 supports a role in promoting neuronal differentiation, with Sox11-positive cells expressing pan-neural markers and becoming morphologically complex. However, frog and mouse Sox11 cannot substitute for one another; a functional difference likely reflected in sequence divergence. Thus, Sox11 appears to act similarly in subserving neuronal differentiation but is species-specific in frog neural development and mouse corticogenesis.

  6. Is verbal episodic memory in elderly with amyloid deposits preserved through altered neuronal function?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ossenkoppele, Rik; Madison, Cindee; Oh, Hwamee; Wirth, Miranka; van Berckel, Bart N M; Jagust, William J

    2014-08-01

    A potential mechanism that enables intellectual preservation in cognitively normal elderly that harbor beta-amyloid (Aβ) pathology is heightened cerebral glucose metabolism. To investigate cross-sectional inter-relationships between Aβ, glucose metabolism, and cognition, 81 subjects (mean age: 75 ± 7 years) underwent [(11)C]Pittsburgh Compound-B and [(18)F]fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography scans and neuropsychological testing. They were divided into low-Aβ (n = 53), intermediate-Aβ (n = 13) and high-Aβ (n = 15) groups as defined by their global cortical [(11)C]PIB retention. Glucose metabolism was assessed using a MetaROI mask that covers metabolically critical regions in Alzheimer's disease (AD) (i.e., posterior cingulate and bilateral angular and inferior temporal gyri). Previously validated factor scores for verbal and visual episodic memory, semantic memory, working memory, and executive functioning were used to evaluate cognitive performances. Greater Aβ deposition in the precuneus was associated with higher metabolic activity (at trend level) and lower visual episodic memory scores. Glucose metabolism did not correlate with cognition across all subjects. However, heightened metabolic activity was associated with better verbal episodic memory performance in subjects with elevated amyloid levels. This preliminary study suggests that neural compensation, as a manifestation of brain reserve, enables elderly supposedly on the path to AD, at least temporarily, to preserve cognitive function. © The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  7. Beneficial effects of fruit extracts on neuronal function and behavior following 56Fe irradiation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joseph, J. A.; Shukitt-Hale, B.; Carey, A. N.; Jenkins, D.; Rabin, B. M.

    Exposing young rats to particles of high energy and charge HZE particles enhances indices of oxidative stress and inflammation and disrupts the functioning of the dopaminergic system and behaviors mediated by this system in a manner similar to that seen in aged animals Previous research has shown that diets supplemented with 2 blueberry or strawberry extracts have the ability to retard and even reverse age-related deficits in behavior and signal transduction in rats perhaps due to their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties This study evaluated the efficacy of these diets on irradiation-induced deficits in these parameters by maintaining rats on these diets or a control diet for 8 weeks prior to being exposed to whole-body irradiation with 1 5 Gy of 1 GeV n high-energy 56 Fe particles Irradiation impaired performance in the Morris water maze and measures of dopamine release one month following radiation these deficits were protected by the antioxidant diets The strawberry diet offered better protection against spatial deficits in the maze because strawberry-fed animals were better able to retain place information a hippocampally-mediated behavior compared to controls The blueberry diet on the other hand seemed to improve reversal learning a behavior more dependent on intact striatal function These data suggest that 56 Fe particle irradiation causes deficits in behavior and signaling in rats which were ameliorated by an antioxidant diet and that the polyphenols in these fruits might be acting in different brain regions

  8. Why is intelligence correlated with semen quality?: Biochemical pathways common to sperm and neuron function and their vulnerability to pleiotropic mutations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pierce, Arand; Miller, Geoffrey; Arden, Rosalind; Gottfredson, Linda S

    2009-09-01

    We recently found positive correlations between human general intelligence and three key indices of semen quality, and hypothesized that these correlations arise through a phenotype-wide 'general fitness factor' reflecting overall mutation load. In this addendum we consider some of the biochemical pathways that may act as targets for pleiotropic mutations that disrupt both neuron function and sperm function in parallel. We focus especially on the inter-related roles of polyunsaturated fatty acids, exocytosis and receptor signaling.

  9. Why is intelligence correlated with semen quality?: Biochemical pathways common to sperm and neuron function and their vulnerability to pleiotropic mutations

    OpenAIRE

    Pierce, Arand; Miller, Geoffrey; Arden, Rosalind; Gottfredson, Linda S

    2009-01-01

    We recently found positive correlations between human general intelligence and three key indices of semen quality, and hypothesized that these correlations arise through a phenotype-wide ‘general fitness factor’ reflecting overall mutation load. In this addendum we consider some of the biochemical pathways that may act as targets for pleiotropic mutations that disrupt both neuron function and sperm function in parallel. We focus especially on the inter-related roles of polyunsaturated fatty a...

  10. Muscarinic M4 Receptors on Cholinergic and Dopamine D1 Receptor-Expressing Neurons Have Opposing Functionality for Positive Reinforcement and Influence Impulsivity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anna M. Klawonn

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The neurotransmitter acetylcholine has been implicated in reward learning and drug addiction. However, the roles of the various cholinergic receptor subtypes on different neuron populations remain elusive. Here we study the function of muscarinic M4 receptors (M4Rs in dopamine D1 receptor (D1R expressing neurons and cholinergic neurons (expressing choline acetyltransferase; ChAT, during various reward-enforced behaviors and in a “waiting”-impulsivity test. We applied cell-type-specific gene deletions targeting M4Rs in D1RCre or ChATCre mice. Mice lacking M4Rs in D1R-neurons displayed greater cocaine seeking and drug-primed reinstatement than their littermate controls in a Pavlovian conditioned place preference (CPP paradigm. Furthermore, the M4R-D1RCre mice initiated significantly more premature responses (PRs in the 5-choice-serial-reaction-time-task (5CSRTT than their littermate controls, indicating impaired waiting impulse control. In contrast, mice lacking M4Rs in cholinergic neurons did not acquire cocaine Pavlovian conditioning. The M4R-ChATCre mice were also unable to learn positive reinforcement to either natural reward or cocaine in an operant runway paradigm. Immediate early gene (IEG expression (cFos and FosB induced by repeated cocaine injections was significantly increased in the forebrain of M4R-D1RCre mice, whereas it remained normal in the M4R-ChATCre mice. Our study illustrates that muscarinic M4Rs on specific neural populations, either cholinergic or D1R-expressing, are pivotal for learning processes related to both natural reward and drugs of abuse, with opposing functionality. Furthermore, we found that neurons expressing both M4Rs and D1Rs are important for signaling impulse control.

  11. Long-term activation of group I metabotropic glutamate receptors increases functional TRPV1-expressing neurons in mouse dorsal root ganglia

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    Takayoshi eMasuoka

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Damaged tissues release glutamate and other chemical mediators for several hours. These chemical mediators contribute to modulation of pruritus and pain. Herein, we investigated the effects of long-term activation of excitatory glutamate receptors on functional expression of transient receptor potential vaniloid type 1 (TRPV1 in dorsal root ganglion (DRG neurons and then on thermal pain behavior. In order to detect the TRPV1-mediated responses in cultured DRG neurons, we monitored intracellular calcium responses to capsaicin, a TRPV1 agonist, with Fura-2. Long-term (4 h treatment with glutamate receptor agonists (glutamate, quisqualate or DHPG increased the proportion of neurons responding to capsaicin through activation of metabotropic glutamate receptor mGluR1, and only partially through the activation of mGluR5; engagement of these receptors was evident in neurons responding to allylisothiocyanate (AITC, a transient receptor potential ankyrin type 1 (TRPA1 agonist. Increase in the proportion was suppressed by phospholipase C, protein kinase C, mitogen/extracellular signal-regulated kinase, p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase or transcription inhibitors. Whole-cell recording was performed to record TRPV1-mediated membrane current; TRPV1 current density significantly increased in the AITC-sensitive neurons after the quisqualate treatment. To elucidate the physiological significance of this phenomenon, a hot plate test was performed. Intraplantar injection of quisqualate or DHPG induced heat hyperalgesia that lasted for 4 h post injection. This chronic hyperalgesia was attenuated by treatment with either mGluR1 or mGluR5 antagonists. These results suggest that long-term activation of mGluR1/5 by peripherally released glutamate may increase the number of neurons expressing functional TRPV1 in DRG, which may be strongly associated with chronic hyperalgesia.

  12. Muscarinic M4 Receptors on Cholinergic and Dopamine D1 Receptor-Expressing Neurons Have Opposing Functionality for Positive Reinforcement and Influence Impulsivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klawonn, Anna M; Wilhelms, Daniel B; Lindström, Sarah H; Singh, Anand Kumar; Jaarola, Maarit; Wess, Jürgen; Fritz, Michael; Engblom, David

    2018-01-01

    The neurotransmitter acetylcholine has been implicated in reward learning and drug addiction. However, the roles of the various cholinergic receptor subtypes on different neuron populations remain elusive. Here we study the function of muscarinic M4 receptors (M4Rs) in dopamine D1 receptor (D1R) expressing neurons and cholinergic neurons (expressing choline acetyltransferase; ChAT), during various reward-enforced behaviors and in a "waiting"-impulsivity test. We applied cell-type-specific gene deletions targeting M4Rs in D1RCre or ChATCre mice. Mice lacking M4Rs in D1R-neurons displayed greater cocaine seeking and drug-primed reinstatement than their littermate controls in a Pavlovian conditioned place preference (CPP) paradigm. Furthermore, the M4R-D1RCre mice initiated significantly more premature responses (PRs) in the 5-choice-serial-reaction-time-task (5CSRTT) than their littermate controls, indicating impaired waiting impulse control. In contrast, mice lacking M4Rs in cholinergic neurons did not acquire cocaine Pavlovian conditioning. The M4R-ChATCre mice were also unable to learn positive reinforcement to either natural reward or cocaine in an operant runway paradigm. Immediate early gene (IEG) expression ( cFos and FosB ) induced by repeated cocaine injections was significantly increased in the forebrain of M4R-D1RCre mice, whereas it remained normal in the M4R-ChATCre mice. Our study illustrates that muscarinic M4Rs on specific neural populations, either cholinergic or D1R-expressing, are pivotal for learning processes related to both natural reward and drugs of abuse, with opposing functionality. Furthermore, we found that neurons expressing both M4Rs and D1Rs are important for signaling impulse control.

  13. Pyruvate incubation enhances glycogen stores and sustains neuronal function during subsequent glucose deprivation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shetty, Pavan K; Sadgrove, Matthew P; Galeffi, Francesca; Turner, Dennis A

    2012-01-01

    The use of energy substrates, such as lactate and pyruvate, has been shown to improve synaptic function when administered during glucose deprivation. In the present study, we investigated whether prolonged incubation with monocarboxylate (pyruvate or lactate) prior rather than during glucose deprivation can also sustain synaptic and metabolic function. Pyruvate pre-incubation(3-4h) significantly prolonged (>25 min) the tolerance of rat hippocampal slices to delayed glucose deprivation compared to control and lactate pre-incubated slices, as revealed by field excitatory post synaptic potentials (fEPSPs); pre-incubation with pyruvate also reduced the marked decrease in NAD(P)H fluorescence resulting from glucose deprivation. Moreover, pyruvate exposure led to the enhancement of glycogen stores with time, compared to glucose alone (12 μmol/g tissue at 4h vs. 3.5 μmol/g tissue). Prolonged resistance to glucose deprivation following exogenous pyruvate incubation was prevented by glycogenolysis inhibitors, suggesting that enhanced glycogen mediates the delay in synaptic activity failure. The application of an adenosine A1 receptor antagonist enhanced glycogen utilization and prolonged the time to synaptic failure, further confirming this hypothesis of the importance of glycogen. Moreover, tissue levels of ATP were also significantly maintained during glucose deprivation in pyruvate pretreated slices compared to control and lactate. In summary, these experiments indicate that pyruvate exposure prior to glucose deprivation significantly increased the energy buffering capacity of hippocampal slices, particularly by enhancing internal glycogen stores, delaying synaptic failure during glucose deprivation by maintaining ATP levels, and minimizing the decrease in the levels of NAD(P)H. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Gene expression profiling for human iPS-derived motor neurons from sporadic ALS patients reveals a strong association between mitochondrial functions and neurodegeneration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alves, Chrystian J.; Dariolli, Rafael; Jorge, Frederico M.; Monteiro, Matheus R.; Maximino, Jessica R.; Martins, Roberto S.; Strauss, Bryan E.; Krieger, José E.; Callegaro, Dagoberto; Chadi, Gerson

    2015-01-01

    Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal neurodegenerative disease that leads to widespread motor neuron death, general palsy and respiratory failure. The most prevalent sporadic ALS form is not genetically inherited. Attempts to translate therapeutic strategies have failed because the described mechanisms of disease are based on animal models carrying specific gene mutations and thus do not address sporadic ALS. In order to achieve a better approach to study the human disease, human induced pluripotent stem cell (hiPSC)-differentiated motor neurons were obtained from motor nerve fibroblasts of sporadic ALS and non-ALS subjects using the STEMCCA Cre-Excisable Constitutive Polycistronic Lentivirus system and submitted to microarray analyses using a whole human genome platform. DAVID analyses of differentially expressed genes identified molecular function and biological process-related genes through Gene Ontology. REVIGO highlighted the related functions mRNA and DNA binding, GTP binding, transcription (co)-repressor activity, lipoprotein receptor binding, synapse organization, intracellular transport, mitotic cell cycle and cell death. KEGG showed pathways associated with Parkinson's disease and oxidative phosphorylation, highlighting iron homeostasis, neurotrophic functions, endosomal trafficking and ERK signaling. The analysis of most dysregulated genes and those representative of the majority of categorized genes indicates a strong association between mitochondrial function and cellular processes possibly related to motor neuron degeneration. In conclusion, iPSC-derived motor neurons from motor nerve fibroblasts of sporadic ALS patients may recapitulate key mechanisms of neurodegeneration and may offer an opportunity for translational investigation of sporadic ALS. Large gene profiling of differentiated motor neurons from sporadic ALS patients highlights mitochondrial participation in the establishment of autonomous mechanisms associated with sporadic ALS

  15. The physiological role of orexin/hypocretin neurons in the regulation of sleep/wakefulness and neuroendocrine functions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ayumu eInutsuka

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available The hypothalamus monitors body homeostasis and regulates various behaviors such as feeding, thermogenesis, and sleeping. Orexins (also known as hypocretins were identified as endogenous ligands for two orphan G-protein-coupled receptors in the lateral hypothalamic area. They were initially recognized as regulators of feeding behavior, but they are mainly regarded as key modulators of the sleep/wakefulness cycle. Orexins activate orexin neurons, monoaminergic and cholinergic neurons in the hypothalamus/brainstem regions, to maintain a long, consolidated awake period. Anatomical studies of neural projections from/to orexin neurons and phenotypic characterization of transgenic mice revealed various roles for orexin neurons in the coordination of emotion, energy homeostasis, reward system, and arousal. For example, orexin neurons are regulated by peripheral metabolic cues, including ghrelin, leptin, and glucose concentration. This suggests that they may provide a link between energy homeostasis and arousal states. A link between the limbic system and orexin neurons might be important for increasing vigilance during emotional stimuli. Orexins are also involved in reward systems and the mechanisms of drug addiction. These findings suggest that orexin neurons sense the outer and inner environment of the body and maintain the proper wakefulness level of animals for survival. This review discusses the mechanism by which orexins maintain sleep/wakefulness states and how this mechanism relates to other systems that regulate emotion, reward, and energy homeostasis.

  16. Direct Reprogramming of Adult Human Somatic Stem Cells Into Functional Neurons Using Sox2, Ascl1, and Neurog2

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica Alves de Medeiros Araújo

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Reprogramming of somatic cells into induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS or directly into cells from a different lineage, including neurons, has revolutionized research in regenerative medicine in recent years. Mesenchymal stem cells are good candidates for lineage reprogramming and autologous transplantation, since they can be easily isolated from accessible sources in adult humans, such as bone marrow and dental tissues. Here, we demonstrate that expression of the transcription factors (TFs SRY (sex determining region Y-box 2 (Sox2, Mammalian achaete-scute homolog 1 (Ascl1, or Neurogenin 2 (Neurog2 is sufficient for reprogramming human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells (hUCMSC into induced neurons (iNs. Furthermore, the combination of Sox2/Ascl1 or Sox2/Neurog2 is sufficient to reprogram up to 50% of transfected hUCMSCs into iNs showing electrical properties of mature neurons and establishing synaptic contacts with co-culture primary neurons. Finally, we show evidence supporting the notion that different combinations of TFs (Sox2/Ascl1 and Sox2/Neurog2 may induce multiple and overlapping neuronal phenotypes in lineage-reprogrammed iNs, suggesting that neuronal fate is determined by a combination of signals involving the TFs used for reprogramming but also the internal state of the converted cell. Altogether, the data presented here contribute to the advancement of techniques aiming at obtaining specific neuronal phenotypes from lineage-converted human somatic cells to treat neurological disorders.

  17. Deep Learning Predicts Correlation between a Functional Signature of Higher Visual Areas and Sparse Firing of Neurons

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    Chengxu Zhuang

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Visual information in the visual cortex is processed in a hierarchical manner. Recent studies show that higher visual areas, such as V2, V3, and V4, respond more vigorously to images with naturalistic higher-order statistics than to images lacking them. This property is a functional signature of higher areas, as it is much weaker or even absent in the primary visual cortex (V1. However, the mechanism underlying this signature remains elusive. We studied this problem using computational models. In several typical hierarchical visual models including the AlexNet, VggNet, and SHMAX, this signature was found to be prominent in higher layers but much weaker in lower layers. By changing both the model structure and experimental settings, we found that the signature strongly correlated with sparse firing of units in higher layers but not with any other factors, including model structure, training algorithm (supervised or unsupervised, receptive field size, and property of training stimuli. The results suggest an important role of sparse neuronal activity underlying this special feature of higher visual areas.

  18. Attentional function and basal forebrain cholinergic neuron morphology during aging in the Ts65Dn mouse model of Down syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Powers, Brian E; Velazquez, Ramon; Kelley, Christy M; Ash, Jessica A; Strawderman, Myla S; Alldred, Melissa J; Ginsberg, Stephen D; Mufson, Elliott J; Strupp, Barbara J

    2016-12-01

    Individuals with Down syndrome (DS) exhibit intellectual disability and develop Alzheimer's disease-like neuropathology during the third decade of life. The Ts65Dn mouse model of DS exhibits key features of both disorders, including impairments in learning, attention and memory, as well as atrophy of basal forebrain cholinergic neurons (BFCNs). The present study evaluated attentional function in relation to BFCN morphology in young (3 months) and middle-aged (12 months) Ts65Dn mice and disomic (2N) controls. Ts65Dn mice exhibited attentional dysfunction at both ages, with greater impairment in older trisomics. Density of BFCNs was significantly lower for Ts65Dn mice independent of age, which may contribute to attentional dysfunction since BFCN density was positively associated with performance on an attention task. BFCN volume decreased with age in 2N but not Ts65Dn mice. Paradoxically, BFCN volume was greater in older trisomic mice, suggestive of a compensatory response. In sum, attentional dysfunction occurred in both young and middle-aged Ts65Dn mice, which may in part reflect reduced density and/or phenotypic alterations in BFCNs.

  19. Joint cross-correlation analysis reveals complex, time-dependent functional relationship between cortical neurons and arm electromyograms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhuang, Katie Z.; Lebedev, Mikhail A.

    2014-01-01

    Correlation between cortical activity and electromyographic (EMG) activity of limb muscles has long been a subject of neurophysiological studies, especially in terms of corticospinal connectivity. Interest in this issue has recently increased due to the development of brain-machine interfaces with output signals that mimic muscle force. For this study, three monkeys were implanted with multielectrode arrays in multiple cortical areas. One monkey performed self-timed touch pad presses, whereas the other two executed arm reaching movements. We analyzed the dynamic relationship between cortical neuronal activity and arm EMGs using a joint cross-correlation (JCC) analysis that evaluated trial-by-trial correlation as a function of time intervals within a trial. JCCs revealed transient correlations between the EMGs of multiple muscles and neural activity in motor, premotor and somatosensory cortical areas. Matching results were obtained using spike-triggered averages corrected by subtracting trial-shuffled data. Compared with spike-triggered averages, JCCs more readily revealed dynamic changes in cortico-EMG correlations. JCCs showed that correlation peaks often sharpened around movement times and broadened during delay intervals. Furthermore, JCC patterns were directionally selective for the arm-reaching task. We propose that such highly dynamic, task-dependent and distributed relationships between cortical activity and EMGs should be taken into consideration for future brain-machine interfaces that generate EMG-like signals. PMID:25210153

  20. Characterising the developmental profile of human embryonic stem cell-derived medium spiny neuron progenitors and assessing mature neuron function using a CRISPR-generated human DARPP-32WT/eGFP-AMP reporter line.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunt, C P J; Pouton, C W; Haynes, J M

    2017-06-01

    In the developing ventral telencephalon, cells of the lateral ganglionic eminence (LGE) give rise to all medium spiny neurons (MSNs). This development occurs in response to a highly orchestrated series of morphogenetic stimuli that pattern the resultant neurons as they develop. Striatal MSNs are characterised by expression of dopamine receptors, dopamine-and cyclic AMP-regulated phosphoprotein (DARPP32) and the neurotransmitter GABA. In this study, we demonstrate that fine tuning Wnt and hedgehog (SHH) signaling early in human embryonic stem cell differentiation can induce a subpallial progenitor molecular profile. Stimulation of TGFβ signaling pathway by activin-A further supports patterning of progenitors to striatal precursors which adopt an LGE-specific gene signature. Moreover, we report that these MSNs also express markers associated with mature neuron function (cannabinoid, adenosine and dopamine receptors). To facilitate live-cell identification we generated a human embryonic stem cell line using CRISPR-mediated gene editing at the DARPP32 locus (DARPP32 WT/eGFP-AMP-LacZ ). The addition of dopamine to MSNs either increased, decreased or had no effect on intracellular calcium, indicating the presence of multiple dopamine receptor subtypes. In summary, we demonstrate greater control over early fate decisions using activin-A, Wnt and SHH to direct differentiation into MSNs. We also generate a DARPP32 reporter line that enables deeper pharmacological profiling and interrogation of complex receptor interactions in human MSNs. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Neurodevelopmental disruption of cortico-striatal function caused by degeneration of habenula neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Young-A Lee

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available The habenula plays an important role on cognitive and affective functions by regulating monoamines transmission such as the dopamine and serotonin, such that its dysfunction is thought to underlie a number of psychiatric conditions. Given that the monoamine systems are highly vulnerable to neurodevelopmental insults, damages in the habenula during early neurodevelopment may cause devastating effects on the wide-spread brain areas targeted by monoamine innervations.Using a battery of behavioral, anatomical, and biochemical assays, we examined the impacts of neonatal damage in the habenula on neurodevelopmental sequelae of the prefrontal cortex (PFC and nucleus accumbens (NAcc and associated behavioral deficits in rodents. Neonatal lesion of the medial and lateral habenula by ibotenic acid produced an assortment of behavioral manifestations consisting of hyper-locomotion, impulsivity, and attention deficit, with hyper-locomotion and impulsivity being observed only in the juvenile period, whereas attention deficit was sustained up until adulthood. Moreover, these behavioral alterations were also improved by amphetamine. Our study further revealed that impulsivity and attention deficit were associated with disruption of PFC volume and dopamine (DA receptor expression, respectively. In contrast, hyper-locomotion was associated with decreased DA transporter expression in the NAcc. We also found that neonatal administration of nicotine into the habenula of neonatal brains produced selective lesion of the medial habenula. Behavioral deficits with neonatal nicotine administration were similar to those caused by ibotenic acid lesion of both medial and lateral habenula during the juvenile period, whereas they were different in adulthood.Because of similarity between behavioral and brain alterations caused by neonatal insults in the habenula and the symptoms and suggested neuropathology in attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD, these results

  2. The functional genome of CA1 and CA3 neurons under native conditions and in response to ischemia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rossner Moritz

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The different physiological repertoire of CA3 and CA1 neurons in the hippocampus, as well as their differing behaviour after noxious stimuli are ultimately based upon differences in the expressed genome. We have compared CA3 and CA1 gene expression in the uninjured brain, and after cerebral ischemia using laser microdissection (LMD, RNA amplification, and array hybridization. Results Profiling in CA1 vs. CA3 under normoxic conditions detected more than 1000 differentially expressed genes that belong to different, physiologically relevant gene ontology groups in both cell types. The comparison of each region under normoxic and ischemic conditions revealed more than 5000 ischemia-regulated genes for each individual cell type. Surprisingly, there was a high co-regulation in both regions. In the ischemic state, only about 100 genes were found to be differentially expressed in CA3 and CA1. The majority of these genes were also different in the native state. A minority of interesting genes (e.g. inhibinbetaA displayed divergent expression preference under native and ischemic conditions with partially opposing directions of regulation in both cell types. Conclusion The differences found in two morphologically very similar cell types situated next to each other in the CNS are large providing a rational basis for physiological differences. Unexpectedly, the genomic response to ischemia is highly similar in these two neuron types, leading to a substantial attenuation of functional genomic differences in these two cell types. Also, the majority of changes that exist in the ischemic state are not generated de novo by the ischemic stimulus, but are preexistant from the genomic repertoire in the native situation. This unexpected influence of a strong noxious stimulus on cell-specific gene expression differences can be explained by the activation of a cell-type independent conserved gene-expression program. Our data generate both novel

  3. High-resolution labeling and functional manipulation of specific neuron types in mouse brain by Cre-activated viral gene expression.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra J Kuhlman

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available We describe a method that combines Cre-recombinase knockin mice and viral-mediated gene transfer to genetically label and functionally manipulate specific neuron types in the mouse brain. We engineered adeno-associated viruses (AAVs that express GFP, dsRedExpress, or channelrhodopsin (ChR2 upon Cre/loxP recombination-mediated removal of a transcription-translation STOP cassette. Fluorescent labeling was sufficient to visualize neuronal structures with synaptic resolution in vivo, and ChR2 expression allowed light activation of neuronal spiking. The structural dynamics of a specific class of neocortical neuron, the parvalbumin-containing (Pv fast-spiking GABAergic interneuron, was monitored over the course of a week. We found that although the majority of Pv axonal boutons were stable in young adults, bouton additions and subtractions on axonal shafts were readily observed at a rate of 10.10% and 9.47%, respectively, over 7 days. Our results indicate that Pv inhibitory circuits maintain the potential for structural re-wiring in post-adolescent cortex. With the generation of an increasing number of Cre knockin mice and because viral transfection can be delivered to defined brain regions at defined developmental stages, this strategy represents a general method to systematically visualize the structure and manipulate the function of different cell types in the mouse brain.

  4. Structural and temporal requirements of Wnt/PCP protein Vangl2 function for convergence and extension movements and facial branchiomotor neuron migration in zebrafish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Xiufang; Sittaramane, Vinoth; Gurung, Suman; Chandrasekhar, Anand

    2014-02-01

    Van gogh-like 2 (Vangl2), a core component of the Wnt/planar cell polarity (PCP) signaling pathway, is a four-pass transmembrane protein with N-terminal and C-terminal domains located in the cytosol, and is structurally conserved from flies to mammals. In vertebrates, Vangl2 plays an essential role in convergence and extension (CE) movements during gastrulation and in facial branchiomotor (FBM) neuron migration in the hindbrain. However, the roles of specific Vangl2 domains, of membrane association, and of specific extracellular and intracellular motifs have not been examined, especially in the context of FBM neuron migration. Through heat shock-inducible expression of various Vangl2 transgenes, we found that membrane associated functions of the N-terminal and C-terminal domains of Vangl2 are involved in regulating FBM neuron migration. Importantly, through temperature shift experiments, we found that the critical period for Vangl2 function coincides with the initial stages of FBM neuron migration out of rhombomere 4. Intriguingly, we have also uncovered a putative nuclear localization motif in the C-terminal domain that may play a role in regulating CE movements. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. The Functional Networks of Prepulse Inhibition: Neuronal Connectivity Analysis Based on FDG-PET in Awake and Unrestrained Rats.

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    Cathrin Rohleder

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Prepulse inhibition (PPI is a neuropsychological process during which a weak sensory stimulus (prepulse attenuates the motor response (startle reaction to a subsequent strong startling stimulus. It is measured as a surrogate marker of sensorimotor gating in patients suffering from neuropsychological diseases such as schizophrenia, as well as in corresponding animal models. A variety of studies has shown that PPI of the acoustical startle reaction comprises three brain circuitries for: i startle mediation, ii PPI mediation and iii modulation of PPI mediation. While anatomical connections and information flow in the startle and PPI mediation pathways are well known, spatial and temporal interactions of the numerous regions involved in PPI modulation are incompletely understood.We therefore combined [18F]fluoro-2-deoxyglucose positron-emission-tomography (FDG-PET with PPI and resting state control paradigms in awake rats. A battery of subtractive, correlative as well as seed-based functional connectivity analyses revealed a default mode-like network (DMN active during resting state only. Furthermore, two functional networks were observed during PPI: Metabolic activity in the lateral circuitry was positively correlated with PPI effectiveness and involved the auditory system and emotional regions. The medial network was negatively correlated with PPI effectiveness, i.e. associated with startle, and recruited a spatial/cognitive network. Our study provides evidence for two distinct neuronal networks, whose continuous interplay determines PPI effectiveness in rats, probably by either protecting the prepulse or facilitating startle processing.Discovering similar networks affected in neuropsychological disorders may help to better understand mechanisms of sensorimotor gating deficits and provide new perspectives for therapeutic strategies.

  6. The Functional Networks of Prepulse Inhibition: Neuronal Connectivity Analysis Based on FDG-PET in Awake and Unrestrained Rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rohleder, Cathrin; Wiedermann, Dirk; Neumaier, Bernd; Drzezga, Alexander; Timmermann, Lars; Graf, Rudolf; Leweke, F Markus; Endepols, Heike

    2016-01-01

    Prepulse inhibition (PPI) is a neuropsychological process during which a weak sensory stimulus ("prepulse") attenuates the motor response ("startle reaction") to a subsequent strong startling stimulus. It is measured as a surrogate marker of sensorimotor gating in patients suffering from neuropsychological diseases such as schizophrenia, as well as in corresponding animal models. A variety of studies has shown that PPI of the acoustical startle reaction comprises three brain circuitries for: (i) startle mediation, (ii) PPI mediation, and (iii) modulation of PPI mediation. While anatomical connections and information flow in the startle and PPI mediation pathways are well known, spatial and temporal interactions of the numerous regions involved in PPI modulation are incompletely understood. We therefore combined [(18)F]fluoro-2-deoxyglucose positron-emission-tomography (FDG-PET) with PPI and resting state control paradigms in awake rats. A battery of subtractive, correlative as well as seed-based functional connectivity analyses revealed a default mode-like network (DMN) active during resting state only. Furthermore, two functional networks were observed during PPI: Metabolic activity in the lateral circuitry was positively correlated with PPI effectiveness and involved the auditory system and emotional regions. The medial network was negatively correlated with PPI effectiveness, i.e., associated with startle, and recruited a spatial/cognitive network. Our study provides evidence for two distinct neuronal networks, whose continuous interplay determines PPI effectiveness in rats, probably by either protecting the prepulse or facilitating startle processing. Discovering similar networks affected in neuropsychological disorders may help to better understand mechanisms of sensorimotor gating deficits and provide new perspectives for therapeutic strategies.

  7. Roles of the SH2 and SH3 domains in the regulation of neuronal Src kinase functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groveman, Bradley R; Xue, Sheng; Marin, Vedrana; Xu, Jindong; Ali, Mohammad K; Bienkiewicz, Ewa A; Yu, Xian-Min

    2011-02-01

    Previous studies demonstrated that intra-domain interactions between Src family kinases (SFKs), stabilized by binding of the phosphorylated C-terminus to the SH2 domain and/or binding of the SH2 kinase linker to the SH3 domain, lock the molecules in a closed conformation, disrupt the kinase active site, and inactivate SFKs. Here we report that the up-regulation of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) induced by expression of constitutively active neuronal Src (n-Src), in which the C-terminus tyrosine is mutated to phenylalanine (n-Src/Y535F), is significantly reduced by dysfunctions of the SH2 and/or SH3 domains of the protein. Furthermore, we found that dysfunctions of SH2 and/or SH3 domains reduce auto-phosphorylation of the kinase activation loop, depress kinase activity, and decrease NMDAR phosphorylation. The SH2 domain plays a greater regulatory role than the SH3 domain. Our data also show that n-Src binds directly to the C-terminus of the NMDAR NR2A subunit in vitro, with a K(D) of 108.2 ± 13.3 nM. This binding is not Src kinase activity-dependent, and dysfunctions of the SH2 and/or SH3 domains do not significantly affect the binding. These data indicate that the SH2 and SH3 domains may function to promote the catalytic activity of active n-Src, which is important in the regulation of NMDAR functions. © 2010 The Authors Journal compilation © 2010 FEBS.

  8. Action processing and mirror neuron function in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis: an fMRI study.

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    Laura Jelsone-Swain

    Full Text Available Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS is a highly debilitating and rapidly fatal neurodegenerative disease. It has been suggested that social cognition may be affected, such as impairment in theory of mind (ToM ability. Despite these findings, research in this area is scarce and the investigation of neural mechanisms behind such impairment is absent. Nineteen patients with ALS and eighteen healthy controls participated in this study. Because the mirror neuron system (MNS is thought to be involved in theory of mind, we first implemented a straightforward action-execution and observation task to assess basic MNS function. Second, we examined the social-cognitive ability to understand actions of others, which is a component of ToM. We used fMRI to assess BOLD activity differences between groups during both experiments. Theory of mind was also measured behaviorally using the Reading the Mind in the Eyes test (RME. ALS patients displayed greater BOLD activity during the action-execution and observation task, especially throughout right anterior cortical regions. These areas included the right inferior operculum, premotor and primary motor regions, and left inferior parietal lobe. A conjunction analysis showed significantly more co-activated voxels during both the observation and action-execution conditions in the patient group throughout MNS regions. These results support a compensatory response in the MNS during action processing. In the action understanding experiment, healthy controls performed better behaviorally and subsequently recruited greater regions of activity throughout the prefrontal cortex and middle temporal gyrus. Lastly, action understanding performance was able to cluster patients with ALS into high and lower performing groups, which then differentiated RME performance. Collectively, these data suggest that social cognition, particularly theory of mind, may be affected in a subset of patients with ALS. This impairment may be related to

  9. DEVELOPMENTAL HYPOTHYROIDISM REDUCES PARVALBUMIN EXPRESSION IN GABAERGIC NEURONS OF CORTEX AND HIPPOCAMPUS: IMMUNOHISTOCHEMICAL FINDINGS AND FUNCTIONAL CORRELATES.

    Science.gov (United States)

    GABAergic interneurons comprise the bulk of local inhibitory neuronal circuitry in cortex and hippocampus and a subpopulation of these interneurons contain the calcium binding protein, parvalbumin (PV). A previous report indicated that severe hypothyroidism reduced PV immunoreact...

  10. 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...

  11. Down-regulation of A-type potassium channel in gastric-specific DRG neurons in a rat model of functional dyspepsia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, S; Chen, J D Z

    2014-07-01

    Although without evidence of organic structural abnormalities, pain or discomfort is a prominent symptom of functional dyspepsia and considered to reflect visceral hypersensitivity whose underlying mechanism is poorly understood. Here, we studied electrophysiological properties and expression of voltage-gated potassium channels in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons in a rat model of functional dyspepsia induced by neonatal gastric irritation. Male Sprague-Dawley rat pups at 10-day old received 0.1% iodoacetamide (IA) or vehicle by oral gavage for 6 days and studied at adulthood. Retrograde tracer-labeled gastric-specific T8 -T12 DRG neurons were harvested for the patch-clamp study in voltage and current-clamp modes and protein expression of K(+) channel in T8 -T12 DRGs was examined by western blotting. (1) Gastric specific but not non-gastric DRG neurons showed an enhanced excitability in neonatal IA-treated rats compared to the control: depolarized resting membrane potentials, a lower current threshold for action potential (AP) activation, and an increase in the number of APs in response to current stimulation. (2) The current density of tetraethylammonium insensitive (transiently inactivating A-type current), but not the tetraethylammonium sensitive (slow-inactivating delayed rectifier K(+) currents), was significantly smaller in IA-treated rats (65.4 ± 6.9 pA/pF), compared to that of control (93.1 ± 8.3 pA/pF). (3) Protein expression of KV 4.3 was down-regulated in IA-treated rats. A-type potassium channels are significantly down-regulated in the gastric-specific DRG neurons in adult rats with mild neonatal gastric irritation, which in part contribute to the enhanced DRG neuron excitabilities that leads to the development of gastric hypersensitivity. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  12. Kappe neurons, a novel population of olfactory sensory neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahuja, Gaurav; Bozorg Nia, Shahrzad; Zapilko, Veronika; Shiriagin, Vladimir; Kowatschew, Daniel; Oka, Yuichiro; Korsching, Sigrun I

    2014-02-10

    Perception of olfactory stimuli is mediated by distinct populations of olfactory sensory neurons, each with a characteristic set of morphological as well as functional parameters. Beyond two large populations of ciliated and microvillous neurons, a third population, crypt neurons, has been identified in teleost and cartilaginous fishes. We report here a novel, fourth olfactory sensory neuron population in zebrafish, which we named kappe neurons for their characteristic shape. Kappe neurons are identified by their Go-like immunoreactivity, and show a distinct spatial distribution within the olfactory epithelium, similar to, but significantly different from that of crypt neurons. Furthermore, kappe neurons project to a single identified target glomerulus within the olfactory bulb, mdg5 of the mediodorsal cluster, whereas crypt neurons are known to project exclusively to the mdg2 glomerulus. Kappe neurons are negative for established markers of ciliated, microvillous and crypt neurons, but appear to have microvilli. Kappe neurons constitute the fourth type of olfactory sensory neurons reported in teleost fishes and their existence suggests that encoding of olfactory stimuli may require a higher complexity than hitherto assumed already in the peripheral olfactory system.

  13. Transplantation of β-endorphin neurons into the hypothalamus promotes immune function and restricts the growth and metastasis of mammary carcinoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarkar, Dipak K; Zhang, Changqing; Murugan, Sengottuvelan; Dokur, Madhavi; Boyadjieva, Nadka I; Ortigüela, Maria; Reuhl, Kenneth R; Mojtehedzadeh, Sepide

    2011-10-01

    Neurobehavioral stress has been shown to promote tumor growth and progression and dampen the immune system. In this study, we investigated whether inhibiting stress hormone production could inhibit the development of mammary carcinoma and metastasis in a rat model of breast carcinogenesis. To enhance β-endorphin (BEP), the endogenous opioid polypeptide that boosts immune activity and decreases stress, we generated BEP neurons by in vitro differentiation from fetal neuronal stem cells and transplanted them into the hypothalami of rats subjected to breast carcinogenesis. BEP-transplanted rats displayed a reduction in mammary tumor incidence, growth, malignancy rate, and metastasis compared with cortical cells-transplanted rats. BEP neuron transplants also reduced inflammation and epithelial to mesenchymal transition in the tumor tissues. In addition, BEP neuron transplants increased peripheral natural killer (NK) cell and macrophage activities, elevated plasma levels of antiinflammatory cytokines, and reduced plasma levels of inflammatory cytokines. Antimetastatic effects along with stimulation of NK cells and macrophages could be reversed by treatment with the opiate antagonist naloxone, the β-receptor agonist metaproterenol, or the nicotine acetylcholine receptor antagonist methyllycaconitine. Together, our findings establish a protective role for BEP against the growth and metastasis of mammary tumor cells by altering autonomic nervous system activities that enhance innate immune function.

  14. Targeted disruption of the Mast syndrome gene SPG21 in mice impairs hind limb function and alters axon branching in cultured cortical neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soderblom, Cynthia; Stadler, Julia; Jupille, Henri; Blackstone, Craig; Shupliakov, Oleg

    2017-01-01

    Mast syndrome (SPG21) is a childhood-onset, autosomal recessive, complicated form of hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP) characterized by dementia, thin corpus callosum, white matter abnormalities, and cerebellar and extrapyramidal signs in addition to spastic paraparesis. A nucleotide insertion resulting in premature truncation of the SPG21 gene product maspardin underlies this disorder, likely leading to loss of protein function. In this study, we generated SPG21−/− knockout mice by homologous recombination as a possible animal model for SPG21. Though SPG21−/− mice appeared normal at birth, within several months they developed gradually progressive hind limb dysfunction. Cerebral cortical neurons cultured from SPG21−/− mice exhibited significantly more axonal branching than neurons from wild-type animals, while comprehensive neuropathological analysis of SPG21−/− mice did not reveal definitive abnormalities. Since alterations in axon branching have been seen in neurons derived from animal models of other forms of HSP as well as motor neuron diseases, this may represent a common cellular pathogenic theme. PMID:20661613

  15. Combining Exergame Training with Omega-3 Fatty Acid Supplementation: Protocol for a Randomized Controlled Study assessing the Effect on Neuronal Structure/Function in the Elderly Brain

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    Alexandra Schättin

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available A common problem in the older population is the risk of falling that might lead to injury, immobility, and reduced survival. Age-related neuronal changes, e.g. decline in grey- and white-matter, affect neuronal, cognitive, and motor functioning. The improvement of these factors might decrease fall events in elderly. Studies showed that the sole administration of video game-based physical exercise, a so-called exergame, or omega-3 fatty acid (FA may improve motor and/or cognitive functioning through neuronal changes in the brain of older adults. The aim of this study is to assess the effects of a combination of exergame training with omega-3 FA supplementation on the elderly brain. We hypothesize that an intervention using a combination approach differently effects on the neuronal structure and function of the elderly’s brain as compared to the sole administration of exergame training. The study is a parallel, double-blinded, randomized controlled trial lasting 26 weeks. Sixty autonomous living, non-smoking, and right-handed healthy older (>65 years adults who live independently or in a senior residency are included, randomized, and allocated to one of two study groups. The experimental group receives a daily amount of 13.5ml fish oil (including 2.9g of omega-3 FA, whereas the control group receives a daily amount of 13.5ml olive oil for 26 weeks. After 16 weeks, both groups start with an exergame training program three times per week. Measurements are performed on three time-points by treatment blinded investigators: pre-intervention measurement, blood sample after 16 week, and post-intervention measurements. The main outcomes are motor evoked potentials of the right M. tibialis anterior (transcranial magnetic stimulation and response-related potentials (electroencephalography during a cognitive test. For secondary outcomes, reaction times during cognitive tests and spatio-temporal parameters during gait performance are measured. Statistics

  16. Neuronal correlates of theory of mind and empathy: a functional magnetic resonance imaging study in a nonverbal task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Völlm, Birgit A; Taylor, Alexander N W; Richardson, Paul; Corcoran, Rhiannon; Stirling, John; McKie, Shane; Deakin, John F W; Elliott, Rebecca

    2006-01-01

    Theory of Mind (ToM), the ability to attribute mental states to others, and empathy, the ability to infer emotional experiences, are important processes in social cognition. Brain imaging studies in healthy subjects have described a brain system involving medial prefrontal cortex, superior temporal sulcus and temporal pole in ToM processing. Studies investigating networks associated with empathic responding also suggest involvement of temporal and frontal lobe regions. In this fMRI study, we used a cartoon task derived from Sarfati et al. (1997) [Sarfati, Y., Hardy-Bayle, M.C., Besche, C., Widlocher, D. 1997. Attribution of intentions to others in people with schizophrenia: a non-verbal exploration with comic strips. Schizophrenia Research 25, 199-209.]with both ToM and empathy stimuli in order to allow comparison of brain activations in these two processes. Results of 13 right-handed, healthy, male volunteers were included. Functional images were acquired using a 1.5 T Phillips Gyroscan. Our results confirmed that ToM and empathy stimuli are associated with overlapping but distinct neuronal networks. Common areas of activation included the medial prefrontal cortex, temporoparietal junction and temporal poles. Compared to the empathy condition, ToM stimuli revealed increased activations in lateral orbitofrontal cortex, middle frontal gyrus, cuneus and superior temporal gyrus. Empathy, on the other hand, was associated with enhanced activations of paracingulate, anterior and posterior cingulate and amygdala. We therefore suggest that ToM and empathy both rely on networks associated with making inferences about mental states of others. However, empathic responding requires the additional recruitment of networks involved in emotional processing. These results have implications for our understanding of disorders characterized by impairments of social cognition, such as autism and psychopathy.

  17. Serum Neuron-Specific Enolase, Biogenic Amino-Acids and Neurobehavioral Function in Lead-Exposed Workers from Lead-Acid Battery Manufacturing Process

    OpenAIRE

    K Ravibabu; T Barman; HR Rajmohan

    2015-01-01

    Background: The interaction between serum neuron-specific enolase (NSE), biogenic amino-acids and neurobehavioral function with blood lead levels in workers exposed to lead form lead-acid battery manufacturing process was not studied. Objective: To evaluate serum NSE and biogenic amino-acids (dopamine and serotonin) levels, and neurobehavioral performance among workers exposed to lead from lead-acid storage battery plant, and its relation with blood lead levels (BLLs). Methods: In a c...

  18. Altered Intrinsic Pyramidal Neuron Properties and Pathway-Specific Synaptic Dysfunction Underlie Aberrant Hippocampal Network Function in a Mouse Model of Tauopathy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Booth, Clair A; Witton, Jonathan; Nowacki, Jakub; Tsaneva-Atanasova, Krasimira; Jones, Matthew W; Randall, Andrew D; Brown, Jonathan T

    2016-01-13

    The formation and deposition of tau protein aggregates is proposed to contribute to cognitive impairments in dementia by disrupting neuronal function in brain regions, including the hippocampus. We used a battery of in vivo and in vitro electrophysiological recordings in the rTg4510 transgenic mouse model, which overexpresses a mutant form of human tau protein, to investigate the effects of tau pathology on hippocampal neuronal function in area CA1 of 7- to 8-month-old mice, an age point at which rTg4510 animals exhibit advanced tau pathology and progressive neurodegeneration. In vitro recordings revealed shifted theta-frequency resonance properties of CA1 pyramidal neurons, deficits in synaptic transmission at Schaffer collateral synapses, and blunted plasticity and imbalanced inhibition at temporoammonic synapses. These changes were associated with aberrant CA1 network oscillations, pyramidal neuron bursting, and spatial information coding in vivo. Our findings relate tauopathy-associated changes in cellular neurophysiology to altered behavior-dependent network function. Dementia is characterized by the loss of learning and memory ability. The deposition of tau protein aggregates in the brain is a pathological hallmark of dementia; and the hippocampus, a brain structure known to be critical in processing learning and memory, is one of the first and most heavily affected regions. Our results show that, in area CA1 of hippocampus, a region involved in spatial learning and memory, tau pathology is associated with specific disturbances in synaptic, cellular, and network-level function, culminating in the aberrant encoding of spatial information and spatial memory impairment. These studies identify several novel ways in which hippocampal information processing may be disrupted in dementia, which may provide targets for future therapeutic intervention. Copyright © 2016 Booth, Witton et al.

  19. The ENU-3 protein family members function in the Wnt pathway parallel to UNC-6/Netrin to promote motor neuron axon outgrowth in C. elegans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Florica, Roxana Oriana; Hipolito, Victoria; Bautista, Stephen; Anvari, Homa; Rapp, Chloe; El-Rass, Suzan; Asgharian, Alimohammad; Antonescu, Costin N; Killeen, Marie T

    2017-10-01

    The axons of the DA and DB classes of motor neurons fail to reach the dorsal cord in the absence of the guidance cue UNC-6/Netrin or its receptor UNC-5 in C. elegans. However, the axonal processes usually exit their cell bodies in the ventral cord in the absence of both molecules. Strains lacking functional versions of UNC-6 or UNC-5 have a low level of DA and DB motor neuron axon outgrowth defects. We found that mutations in the genes for all six of the ENU-3 proteins function to enhance the outgrowth defects of the DA and DB axons in strains lacking either UNC-6 or UNC-5. A mutation in the gene for the MIG-14/Wntless protein also enhances defects in a strain lacking either UNC-5 or UNC-6, suggesting that the ENU-3 and Wnt pathways function parallel to the Netrin pathway in directing motor neuron axon outgrowth. Our evidence suggests that the ENU-3 proteins are novel members of the Wnt pathway in nematodes. Five of the six members of the ENU-3 family are predicted to be single-pass trans-membrane proteins. The expression pattern of ENU-3.1 was consistent with plasma membrane localization. One family member, ENU-3.6, lacks the predicted signal peptide and the membrane-spanning domain. In HeLa cells ENU-3.6 had a cytoplasmic localization and caused actin dependent processes to appear. We conclude that the ENU-3 family proteins function in a pathway parallel to the UNC-6/Netrin pathway for motor neuron axon outgrowth, most likely in the Wnt pathway. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Ejaculation Induced by the Activation of Crz Neurons Is Rewarding to Drosophila Males.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zer-Krispil, Shir; Zak, Hila; Shao, Lisha; Ben-Shaanan, Shir; Tordjman, Lea; Bentzur, Assa; Shmueli, Anat; Shohat-Ophir, Galit

    2018-05-07

    The reward system is a collection of circuits that reinforce behaviors necessary for survival [1, 2]. Given the importance of reproduction for survival, actions that promote successful mating induce pleasurable feeling and are positively reinforced [3, 4]. This principle is conserved in Drosophila, where successful copulation is naturally rewarding to male flies, induces long-term appetitive memories [5], increases brain levels of neuropeptide F (NPF, the fly homolog of neuropeptide Y), and prevents ethanol, known otherwise as rewarding to flies [6, 7], from being rewarding [5]. It is not clear which of the multiple sensory and motor responses performed during mating induces perception of reward. Sexual interactions with female flies that do not reach copulation are not sufficient to reduce ethanol consumption [5], suggesting that only successful mating encounters are rewarding. Here, we uncoupled the initial steps of mating from its final steps and tested the ability of ejaculation to mimic the rewarding value of full copulation. We induced ejaculation by activating neurons that express the neuropeptide corazonin (CRZ) [8] and subsequently measured different aspects of reward. We show that activating Crz-expressing neurons is rewarding to male flies, as they choose to reside in a zone that triggers optogenetic stimulation of Crz neurons and display conditioned preference for an odor paired with the activation. Reminiscent of successful mating, repeated activation of Crz neurons increases npf levels and reduces ethanol consumption. Our results demonstrate that ejaculation stimulated by Crz/Crz-receptor signaling serves as an essential part of the mating reward mechanism in Drosophila. VIDEO ABSTRACT. Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  1. 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.

  2. Generation of Regionally Specified Neural Progenitors and Functional Neurons from Human Embryonic Stem Cells under Defined Conditions

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    Agnete Kirkeby

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available To model human neural-cell-fate specification and to provide cells for regenerative therapies, we have developed a method to generate human neural progenitors and neurons from human embryonic stem cells, which recapitulates human fetal brain development. Through the addition of a small molecule that activates canonical WNT signaling, we induced rapid and efficient dose-dependent specification of regionally defined neural progenitors ranging from telencephalic forebrain to posterior hindbrain fates. Ten days after initiation of differentiation, the progenitors could be transplanted to the adult rat striatum, where they formed neuron-rich and tumor-free grafts with maintained regional specification. Cells patterned toward a ventral midbrain (VM identity generated a high proportion of authentic dopaminergic neurons after transplantation. The dopamine neurons showed morphology, projection pattern, and protein expression identical to that of human fetal VM cells grafted in parallel. VM-patterned but not forebrain-patterned neurons released dopamine and reversed motor deficits in an animal model of Parkinson's disease.

  3. Expression and function of a CP339,818-sensitive K+ current in a subpopulation of putative nociceptive neurons from adult mouse trigeminal ganglia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sforna, Luigi; D'Adamo, Maria Cristina; Servettini, Ilenio; Guglielmi, Luca; Pessia, Mauro; Franciolini, Fabio

    2015-01-01

    Trigeminal ganglion (TG) neurons are functionally and morphologically heterogeneous, and the molecular basis of this heterogeneity is still not fully understood. Here we describe experiments showing that a subpopulation of neurons expresses a delayed-rectifying K+ current (IDRK) with a characteristically high (nanomolar) sensitivity to the dihydroquinoline CP339,818 (CP). Although submicromolar CP has previously been shown to selectively block Kv1.3 and Kv1.4 channels, the CP-sensitive IDRK found in TG neurons could not be associated with either of these two K+ channels. It could neither be associated with Kv2.1 channels homomeric or heteromerically associated with the Kv9.2, Kv9.3, or Kv6.4 subunits, whose block by CP, tested using two-electrode voltage-clamp recordings from Xenopus oocytes, resulted in the low micromolar range, nor to the Kv7 subfamily, given the lack of blocking efficacy of 3 μM XE991. Within the group of multiple-firing neurons considered in this study, the CP-sensitive IDRK was preferentially expressed in a subpopulation showing several nociceptive markers, such as small membrane capacitance, sensitivity to capsaicin, and slow afterhyperpolarization (AHP); in these neurons the CP-sensitive IDRK controls the membrane resting potential, the firing frequency, and the AHP duration. A biophysical study of the CP-sensitive IDRK indicated the presence of two kinetically distinct components: a fast deactivating component having a relatively depolarized steady-state inactivation (IDRKf) and a slow deactivating component with a more hyperpolarized V1/2 for steady-state inactivation (IDRKs). PMID:25652918

  4. 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. © 2014 Society for the Study of Addiction.

  5. Impaired recruitment of seizure-generated neurons into functional memory networks of the adult dentate gyrus following long-term amygdala kindling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fournier, Neil M; Botterill, Justin J; Marks, Wendie N; Guskjolen, Axel J; Kalynchuk, Lisa E

    2013-06-01

    Epileptic seizures increase the birth of new neurons in the adult hippocampus. Although the consequences of aberrant neurogenesis on behavior are not fully understood, one hypothesis is that seizure-generated neurons might form faulty circuits that disrupt hippocampal functions, such as learning and memory. In the present study, we employed long-term amygdala kindling (i.e., rats receive 99-electrical stimulations) to examine the effect of repeated seizures on hippocampal neurogenesis and behavior. We labeled seizure-generated cells with the proliferation marker BrdU after 30-stimulations and continued kindling for an additional 4weeks to allow newborn neurons to mature under conditions of repeated seizures. After kindling was complete, rats were tested in a trace fear conditioning task and sacrificed 2h later to examine if 4-week old newborn cells were recruited into circuits involved in the retrieval of emotional memory. Compared to non-kindled controls, long-term kindled rats showed significant impairments in fear memory reflected in a decrease in conditioned freezing to both tone and contextual cues during testing. Moreover, long-term kindling also prevented the activation of 4-week old newborn cells in response to fear memory retrieval. These results indicate that the presence of seizure activity during cell maturation impedes the ability of new neurons to integrate properly into circuits important in memory formation. Together, our findings suggest that aberrant seizure-induced neurogenesis might contribute to the development of learning impairments in chronic epilepsy and raise the possibility that targeting the reduced activation of adult born neurons could represent a beneficial strategy to reverse cognitive deficits in some epileptic patients. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Future perspectives in imaging human brain function: A theoretical analysis of techniques that could be used to image neuronal firing in the human brain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Holder, D.S.

    1986-01-01

    There have been enormous advances in the applications of computerised tomography since its inception just over a decade ago, and, as may be seen in many of the other presentations in this symposium, imaging techniques such as PET and NMR can be used to give three dimensional images of various types of metabolic activity. However, attempts to use these techniques to produce images of neuronal functional activity in the sense of neuronal discharge rate have proved to be more difficult, largely because the only parameters that can be measured at present are metabolic, and these have an uncertain relation to the underlying neuronal electrical activity. There appears to be a linear relationship between metabolic activity and the rate of neuronal discharge for lower rates of discharge but it is non-linear over the whole range, and only applies to the steady state. For clinical and neurophysiological applications, it would be very useful to have an imaging device that could produce images of neuronal electrical activity directly, with a high temporal resolution of the order of the action potential, so that individual spikes could be distinguished. This paper is a summary of recent theoretical work which represents an attempt to determine whether such a device could be constructed in the forseeable future. The results are based on an extensive review of the literature and recalculation of data where appropriate. The conclusions are, perhaps surprisingly, positive, and two techniques are put forward as suitable candidates. However, the work is naturally speculative, and is intended more as a basis for discussion with respect to directions for future research than as a statement of certain fact

  7. Acetyl-L-Carnitine via Upegulating Dopamine D1 Receptor and Attenuating Microglial Activation Prevents Neuronal Loss and Improves Memory Functions in Parkinsonian Rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Sonu; Mishra, Akanksha; Srivastava, Neha; Shukla, Rakesh; Shukla, Shubha

    2018-01-01

    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

  8. The Vertebrate Brain, Evidence of Its Modular Organization and Operating System: Insights into the Brain's Basic Units of Structure, Function, and Operation and How They Influence Neuronal Signaling and Behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baslow, Morris H

    2011-01-01

    The human brain is a complex organ made up of neurons and several other cell types, and whose role is processing information for use in eliciting behaviors. However, the composition of its repeating cellular units for both structure and function are unresolved. Based on recent descriptions of the brain's physiological "operating system", a function of the tri-cellular metabolism of N-acetylaspartate (NAA) and N-acetylaspartylglutamate (NAAG) for supply of energy, and on the nature of "neuronal words and languages" for intercellular communication, insights into the brain's modular structural and functional units have been gained. In this article, it is proposed that the basic structural unit in brain is defined by its physiological operating system, and that it consists of a single neuron, and one or more astrocytes, oligodendrocytes, and vascular system endothelial cells. It is also proposed that the basic functional unit in the brain is defined by how neurons communicate, and consists of two neurons and their interconnecting dendritic-synaptic-dendritic field. Since a functional unit is composed of two neurons, it requires two structural units to form a functional unit. Thus, the brain can be envisioned as being made up of the three-dimensional stacking and intertwining of myriad structural units which results not only in its gross structure, but also in producing a uniform distribution of binary functional units. Since the physiological NAA-NAAG operating system for supply of energy is repeated in every structural unit, it is positioned to control global brain function.

  9. Control of ventricular ciliary beating by the Melanin Concentrating Hormone-expressing neurons of the lateral hypothalamus : a functional imaging survey.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gregory eConductier

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available The cyclic peptide Melanin-Concentrating Hormone (MCH is known to control a large number of brain functions in mammals such as food intake and metabolism, stress response, anxiety, sleep/wake cycle, memory and reward. Based on neuroanatomical and electrophysiological studies these functions were attributed to neuronal circuits expressing MCHR1, the single MCH receptor in rodents. In complement to our recently published work (Conductier et al. 2013 we provided here new data regarding the action of MCH on ependymocytes in the mouse brain. First, we establish that MCHR1 mRNA is expressed in the ependymal cells of the third ventricle epithelium. Second, we demonstated a tonic control of MCH-expressing neurons on ependymal cilia beat frequency using in vitro optogenics. Finally, we performed in vivo measurements of CSF flow using fluorescent micro-beads in wild-type and MCHR1 knockout mice. Collectively, our results demonstrated that MCH-expressing neurons modulate ciliary beating of ependymal cells at the third ventricle and could contribute to maintain cerebro-spinal fluid homeostasis.

  10. Neuro-fuzzy decoding of sensory information from ensembles of simultaneously recorded dorsal root ganglion neurons for functional electrical stimulation applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rigosa, J.; Weber, D. J.; Prochazka, A.; Stein, R. B.; Micera, S.

    2011-08-01

    Functional electrical stimulation (FES) is used to improve motor function after injury to the central nervous system. Some FES systems use artificial sensors to switch between finite control states. To optimize FES control of the complex behavior of the musculo-skeletal system in activities of daily life, it is highly desirable to implement feedback control. In theory, sensory neural signals could provide the required control signals. Recent studies have demonstrated the feasibility of deriving limb-state estimates from the firing rates of primary afferent neurons recorded in dorsal root ganglia (DRG). These studies used multiple linear regression (MLR) methods to generate estimates of limb position and velocity based on a weighted sum of firing rates in an ensemble of simultaneously recorded DRG neurons. The aim of this study was to test whether the use of a neuro-fuzzy (NF) algorithm (the generalized dynamic fuzzy neural networks (GD-FNN)) could improve the performance, robustness and ability to generalize from training to test sets compared to the MLR technique. NF and MLR decoding methods were applied to ensemble DRG recordings obtained during passive and active limb movements in anesthetized and freely moving cats. The GD-FNN model provided more accurate estimates of limb state and generalized better to novel movement patterns. Future efforts will focus on implementing these neural recording and decoding methods in real time to provide closed-loop control of FES using the information extracted from sensory neurons.

  11. Neuro-fuzzy decoding of sensory information from ensembles of simultaneously recorded dorsal root ganglion neurons for functional electrical stimulation applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rigosa, J; Weber, D J; Prochazka, A; Stein, R B; Micera, S

    2011-08-01

    Functional electrical stimulation (FES) is used to improve motor function after injury to the central nervous system. Some FES systems use artificial sensors to switch between finite control states. To optimize FES control of the complex behavior of the musculo-skeletal system in activities of daily life, it is highly desirable to implement feedback control. In theory, sensory neural signals could provide the required control signals. Recent studies have demonstrated the feasibility of deriving limb-state estimates from the firing rates of primary afferent neurons recorded in dorsal root ganglia (DRG). These studies used multiple linear regression (MLR) methods to generate estimates of limb position and velocity based on a weighted sum of firing rates in an ensemble of simultaneously recorded DRG neurons. The aim of this study was to test whether the use of a neuro-fuzzy (NF) algorithm (the generalized dynamic fuzzy neural networks (GD-FNN)) could improve the performance, robustness and ability to generalize from training to test sets compared to the MLR technique. NF and MLR decoding methods were applied to ensemble DRG recordings obtained during passive and active limb movements in anesthetized and freely moving cats. The GD-FNN model provided more accurate estimates of limb state and generalized better to novel movement patterns. Future efforts will focus on implementing these neural recording and decoding methods in real time to provide closed-loop control of FES using the information extracted from sensory neurons.

  12. Signaling triggered by Thy-1 interaction with ß3 integrin on astrocytes is an essential step towards unraveling neuronal Thy-1 function

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ANA MARIA AVALOS

    2002-01-01

    Full Text Available Thy-1 is an abundant neuronal glycoprotein in mammals. Despite such prevalence, Thy-1 function remains largely obscure in the absence of a defined ligand. Recently described evidence that Thy-1 interacts with ß3 integrin on astrocytes will be discussed. Thy-1 binding to ß3 integrin triggers tyrosine phosphorylation of focal adhesion proteins in astrocytes, thereby promoting focal adhesion formation, cell attachment and spreading. Thy-1 has been reported to modulate neurite outgrowth by triggering a cellular response in neurons. However, our data indicate that Thy-1 can also initiate signaling events that promote adhesion of adjacent astrocytes to the underlying surface. Preliminary results suggest that morphological changes observed in the actin cytoskeleton of astrocytes as a consequence of Thy-1 binding is mediated by small GTPases from the Rho family. Our findings argue that Thy-1 functions in a bimodal fashion, as a receptor on neuronal cells and as a ligand for ß3 integrin receptor on astrocytes. Since Thy-1 is implicated in the inhibition of neurite outgrowth, signaling events in astrocytes are likely to play an important role in this process

  13. Genetic Deletion of Neuronal PPARγ Enhances the Emotional Response to Acute Stress and Exacerbates Anxiety: An Effect Reversed by Rescue of Amygdala PPARγ Function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domi, Esi; Uhrig, Stefanie; Soverchia, Laura; Spanagel, Rainer; Hansson, Anita C; Barbier, Estelle; Heilig, Markus; Ciccocioppo, Roberto; Ubaldi, Massimo

    2016-12-14

    attention for its involvement in the regulation of CNS immune response and functions. Here, we demonstrate that neuronal PPARγ activation prevented the negative emotional effects of stress and exerted anxiolytic actions without influencing hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis function. Conversely, pharmacological blockade or genetic deletion of PPARγ enhanced anxiogenic responses and increased vulnerability to stress. These effects appear to be controlled by PPARγ neuronal-mediated mechanisms in the amygdala. Copyright © 2016 the authors 0270-6474/16/3612612-13$15.00/0.

  14. Structural and Functional Substitution of Deleted Primary Sensory Neurons by New Growth from Intrinsic Spinal Cord Nerve Cells: An Alternative Concept in Reconstruction of Spinal Cord Circuits

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicholas D. James

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available In a recent clinical report, return of the tendon stretch reflex was demonstrated after spinal cord surgery in a case of total traumatic brachial plexus avulsion injury. Peripheral nerve grafts had been implanted into the spinal cord to reconnect to the peripheral nerves for motor and sensory function. The dorsal root ganglia (DRG containing the primary sensory nerve cells had been surgically removed in order for secondary or spinal cord sensory neurons to extend into the periphery and replace the deleted DRG neurons. The present experimental study uses a rat injury model first to corroborate the clinical finding of a re-established spinal reflex arch, and second, to elucidate some of the potential mechanisms underlying these findings by means of morphological, immunohistochemical, and electrophysiological assessments. Our findings indicate that, after spinal cord surgery, the central nervous system sensory system could replace the traumatically detached original peripheral sensory connections through new neurite growth from dendrites.

  15. Functional Na(V)1.8 Channels in Intracardiac Neurons The Link Between SCN10A and Cardiac Electrophysiology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verkerk, Arie O.; Remme, Carol Ann; Schumacher, Cees A.; Scicluna, Brendon P.; Wolswinkel, Rianne; de Jonge, Berend; Bezzina, Connie R.; Veldkamp, Marieke W.

    2012-01-01

    Rationale: The SCN10A gene encodes the neuronal sodium channel isoform Na(V)1.8. Several recent genome-wide association studies have linked SCN10A to PR interval and QRS duration, strongly suggesting an as-yet unknown role for Na(V)1.8 in cardiac electrophysiology. Objective: To demonstrate the

  16. Functional characterization of the octenol receptor neuron on the maxillary palps of the yellow fever mosquito, Aedes aegypti

    Science.gov (United States)

    1-Octen-3-ol (octenol) is a common attractant released by vertebrates which in combination with carbon dioxide attracts haematophagous arthropods including mosquitoes. A receptor neuron contained within basiconic sensilla on the maxillary palps of adult mosquitoes responds selectively to 1-octen-3-o...

  17. What neuromodulation and lesion studies tell us about the function of the mirror neuron system and embodied cognition

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Keysers, Christian; Paracampo, Riccardo; Gazzola, V.

    2018-01-01

    We review neuromodulation and lesion studies that address how activations in the mirror neuron system contribute to our perception of observed actions. Past reviews showed disruptions of this parieto-premotor network impair imitation and goal and kinematic processing. Recent studies bring five new

  18. Feline bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) show similar phenotype and functions with regards to neuronal differentiation as human MSCs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munoz, Jessian L; Greco, Steven J; Patel, Shyam A; Sherman, Lauren S; Bhatt, Suresh; Bhatt, Rekha S; Shrensel, Jeffrey A; Guan, Yan-Zhong; Xie, Guiqin; Ye, Jiang-Hong; Rameshwar, Pranela; Siegel, Allan

    2012-09-01

    Mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) show promise for treatment of a variety of neurological and other disorders. Cat has a high degree of linkage with the human genome and has been used as a model for analysis of neurological disorders such as stroke, Alzheimer's disease and motor disorders. The present study was designed to characterize bone marrow-derived MSCs from cats and to investigate the capacity to generate functional peptidergic neurons. MSCs were expanded with cells from the femurs of cats and then characterized by phenotype and function. Phenotypically, feline and human MSCs shared surface markers, and lacked hematopoietic markers, with similar morphology. As compared to a subset of human MSCs, feline MSCs showed no evidence of the major histocompatibility class II. Since the literature suggested Stro-1 as an indicator of pluripotency, we compared early and late passages feline MSCs and found its expression in >90% of the cells. However, the early passage cells showed two distinct populations of Stro-1-expressing cells. At passage 5, the MSCs were more homogeneous with regards to Stro-1 expression. The passage 5 MSCs differentiated to osteogenic and adipogenic cells, and generated neurons with electrophysiological properties. This correlated with the expression of mature neuronal markers with concomitant decrease in stem cell-associated genes. At day 12 induction, the cells were positive for MAP2, Neuronal Nuclei, tubulin βIII, Tau and synaptophysin. This correlated with electrophysiological maturity as presented by excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs). The findings indicate that the cat may constitute a promising biomedical model for evaluation of novel therapies such as stem cell therapy in such neurological disorders as Alzheimer's disease and stroke. Copyright © 2012 International Society of Differentiation. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. A splice acceptor mutation in C. elegans daf-19/Rfx disrupts functional specialization of male-specific ciliated neurons but does not affect ciliogenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wells, Kristen L; Rowneki, Mazhgan; Killian, Darrell J

    2015-04-01

    RFX transcription factors are master regulators of ciliogenesis in diverse animal species. The sole Caenorhabditis elegans RFX homolog, DAF-19, plays at least two roles in the formation of functional cilia. The DAF-19(C) isoform is required for ciliogenesis and the DAF-19(M) isoform is required for the functional specialization of a subset of male-specific ciliated neurons called PKD neurons. Here we report the identification of a novel mutation, daf-19(sm129), which disrupts the functional specification of PKD neurons and thus suggests that daf-19m activity is compromised. However, ciliogenesis is not disrupted in daf-19(sm129) mutants suggesting that daf-19c activity is retained. The sm129 mutation disrupts a splice acceptor site adjacent to an exon common to the daf-19c and daf-19m isoforms resulting in aberrant splicing in a proportion of transcripts. While aberrant splicing of daf-19c to upstream cryptic sites results in in-frame and functional products, a large proportion of daf-19m mRNAs include the entire upstream intron, which introduces a frameshift and stop codons. At least 15% of disease-causing mutations affect splicing of the gene bearing the mutation, thus it is important to understand the consequences of splice site mutations on gene function. However, predicting the effects of a splice site mutation remains difficult and experimental determination is still required. Using daf-19(sm129) as a model, our results suggest that this problem is exacerbated when a splice acceptor mutation is used by multiple isoforms of the same gene because the effects on each isoform can be dramatically different. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Neuronal survival in the brain: neuron type-specific mechanisms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pfisterer, Ulrich Gottfried; Khodosevich, Konstantin

    2017-01-01

    Neurogenic regions of mammalian brain produce many more neurons that will eventually survive and reach a mature stage. Developmental cell death affects both embryonically produced immature neurons and those immature neurons that are generated in regions of adult neurogenesis. Removal of substantial...... numbers of neurons that are not yet completely integrated into the local circuits helps to ensure that maturation and homeostatic function of neuronal networks in the brain proceed correctly. External signals from brain microenvironment together with intrinsic signaling pathways determine whether...... for survival in a certain brain region. This review focuses on how immature neurons survive during normal and impaired brain development, both in the embryonic/neonatal brain and in brain regions associated with adult neurogenesis, and emphasizes neuron type-specific mechanisms that help to survive for various...

  1. P2X7 receptors in satellite glial cells mediate high functional expression of P2X3 receptors in immature dorsal root ganglion neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chen Yong

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The purinergic P2X3 receptor (P2X3R expressed in the dorsal root ganglion (DRG sensory neuron and the P2X7 receptor (P2X7R expressed in the surrounding satellite glial cell (SGC are two major receptors participating in neuron-SGC communication in adult DRGs. Activation of P2X7Rs was found to tonically reduce the expression of P2X3Rs in DRGs, thus inhibiting the abnormal pain behaviors in adult rats. P2X receptors are also actively involved in sensory signaling in developing rodents. However, very little is known about the developmental change of P2X7Rs in DRGs and the interaction between P2X7Rs and P2X3Rs in those animals. We therefore examined the expression of P2X3Rs and P2X7Rs in postnatal rats and determined if P2X7R-P2X3R control exists in developing rats. Findings We immunostained DRGs of immature rats and found that P2X3Rs were expressed only in neurons and P2X7Rs were expressed only in SGCs. Western blot analyses indicated that P2X3R expression decreased while P2X7R expression increased with the age of rats. Electrophysiological studies showed that the number of DRG neurons responding to the stimulation of the P2XR agonist, α,β-meATP, was higher and the amplitudes of α,β-meATP-induced depolarizations were larger in immature DRG neurons. As a result, P2X3R-mediated flinching responses were much more pronounced in immature rats than those found in adult rats. When we reduced P2X7R expression with P2X7R-siRNA in postnatal and adult rats, P2X3R-mediated flinch responses were greatly enhanced in both rat populations. Conclusions These results show that the P2X7R expression increases as rats age. In addition, P2X7Rs in SGCs exert inhibitory control on the P2X3R expression and function in sensory neurons of immature rats, just as observed in adult rats. Regulation of P2X7R expression is likely an effective way to control P2X3R activity and manage pain relief in infants.

  2. S phase entry causes homocysteine-induced death while ataxia telangiectasia and Rad3 related protein functions anti-apoptotically to protect neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ye, Weizhen; Blain, Stacy W

    2010-08-01

    3 related proteins, did not rescue apoptosis and in fact exacerbated death, suggesting that the DNA damage response might normally function neuroprotectively to block S phase-dependent apoptosis induction. As cell cycle events appear to be maintained in vivo in affected neurons for weeks to years before apoptosis is observed, activation of the DNA damage response might be able to hold cell cycle-induced death in check.

  3. Parvalbumin+ Neurons and Npas1+ Neurons Are Distinct Neuron Classes in the Mouse External Globus Pallidus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández, Vivian M; Hegeman, Daniel J; Cui, Qiaoling; Kelver, Daniel A; Fiske, Michael P; Glajch, Kelly E; Pitt, Jason E; Huang, Tina Y; Justice, Nicholas J; Chan, C Savio

    2015-08-26

    Compelling evidence suggests that pathological activity of the external globus pallidus (GPe), a nucleus in the basal ganglia, contributes to the motor symptoms of a variety of movement disorders such as Parkinson's disease. Recent studies have challenged the idea that the GPe comprises a single, homogenous population of neurons that serves as a simple relay in the indirect pathway. However, we still lack a full understanding of the diversity of the neurons that make up the GPe. Specifically, a more precise classification scheme is needed to better describe the fundamental biology and function of different GPe neuron classes. To this end, we generated a novel multicistronic BAC (bacterial artificial chromosome) transgenic mouse line under the regulatory elements of the Npas1 gene. Using a combinatorial transgenic and immunohistochemical approach, we discovered that parvalbumin-expressing neurons and Npas1-expressing neurons in the GPe represent two nonoverlapping cell classes, amounting to 55% and 27% of the total GPe neuron population, respectively. These two genetically identified cell classes projected primarily to the subthalamic nucleus and to the striatum, respectively. Additionally, parvalbumin-expressing neurons and Npas1-expressing neurons were distinct in their autonomous and driven firing characteristics, their expression of intrinsic ion conductances, and their responsiveness to chronic 6-hydroxydopamine lesion. In summary, our data argue that parvalbumin-expressing neurons and Npas1-expressing neurons are two distinct functional classes of GPe neurons. This work revises our understanding of the GPe, and provides the foundation for future studies of its function and dysfunction. Until recently, the heterogeneity of the constituent neurons within the external globus pallidus (GPe) was not fully appreciated. We addressed this knowledge gap by discovering two principal GPe neuron classes, which were identified by their nonoverlapping expression of the

  4. Parvalbumin+ Neurons and Npas1+ Neurons Are Distinct Neuron Classes in the Mouse External Globus Pallidus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández, Vivian M.; Hegeman, Daniel J.; Cui, Qiaoling; Kelver, Daniel A.; Fiske, Michael P.; Glajch, Kelly E.; Pitt, Jason E.; Huang, Tina Y.; Justic