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Sample records for directionally selective neuron

  1. Visual coding with a population of direction-selective neurons.

    Fiscella, Michele; Franke, Felix; Farrow, Karl; Müller, Jan; Roska, Botond; da Silveira, Rava Azeredo; Hierlemann, Andreas

    2015-10-01

    The brain decodes the visual scene from the action potentials of ∼20 retinal ganglion cell types. Among the retinal ganglion cells, direction-selective ganglion cells (DSGCs) encode motion direction. Several studies have focused on the encoding or decoding of motion direction by recording multiunit activity, mainly in the visual cortex. In this study, we simultaneously recorded from all four types of ON-OFF DSGCs of the rabbit retina using a microelectronics-based high-density microelectrode array (HDMEA) and decoded their concerted activity using probabilistic and linear decoders. Furthermore, we investigated how the modification of stimulus parameters (velocity, size, angle of moving object) and the use of different tuning curve fits influenced decoding precision. Finally, we simulated ON-OFF DSGC activity, based on real data, in order to understand how tuning curve widths and the angular distribution of the cells' preferred directions influence decoding performance. We found that probabilistic decoding strategies outperformed, on average, linear methods and that decoding precision was robust to changes in stimulus parameters such as velocity. The removal of noise correlations among cells, by random shuffling trials, caused a drop in decoding precision. Moreover, we found that tuning curves are broad in order to minimize large errors at the expense of a higher average error, and that the retinal direction-selective system would not substantially benefit, on average, from having more than four types of ON-OFF DSGCs or from a perfect alignment of the cells' preferred directions. Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.

  2. [Relation between frequency modulation direction selectivity and forward masking of inferior collicular neurons: a study on in vivo intracellular recording in mice].

    Fu, Zi-Ying; Zeng, Hong; Tang, Jia; Li, Jie; Li, Juan; Chen, Qi-Cai

    2013-06-25

    It has been reported that the frequency modulation (FM) or FM direction sensitivity and forward masking of central auditory neurons are related with the neural inhibition, but there are some arguments, because no direct evidence of inhibitory synaptic input was obtained in previous studies using extracellular recording. In the present study, we studied the relation between FM direction sensitivity and forward masking of the inferior collicular (IC) neurons using in vivo intracellular recordings in 20 Mus musculus Km mice. Thirty seven with complete data among 93 neurons were analyzed and discussed. There was an inhibitory area which consisted of inhibitory postsynaptic potentials (IPSP) at high frequency side of frequency tuning of up-sweep FM (FMU) sensitive neurons (n = 12) and at low frequency side of frequency tuning of down-sweep FM (FMD) selective neurons (n = 8), while there was no any inhibitory area at both sides of frequency tuning of non-FM sweep direction (FMN) sensitive neurons (n = 17). Therefore, these results show that the inhibitory area at low or high frequency side of frequency tuning is one of the mechanisms for forming FM sweep direction sensitivity of IC neurons. By comparison of forward masking produced by FMU and FMD sound stimuli in FMU, FMD and FMN neurons, the selective FM sounds could produce stronger forward masking than the non-selective in FMU and FMD neurons, while there was no forward masking difference between FMU and FMD stimuli in the FMN neurons. We suggest that the post-action potential IPSP is a potential mechanism for producing stronger forward masking in FMU and FMD neurons.

  3. Processing and Integration of Contextual Information in Monkey Ventrolateral Prefrontal Neurons during Selection and Execution of Goal-Directed Manipulative Actions.

    Bruni, Stefania; Giorgetti, Valentina; Bonini, Luca; Fogassi, Leonardo

    2015-08-26

    The prefrontal cortex (PFC) is deemed to underlie the complexity, flexibility, and goal-directedness of primates' behavior. Most neurophysiological studies performed so far investigated PFC functions with arm-reaching or oculomotor tasks, thus leaving unclear whether, and to which extent, PFC neurons also play a role in goal-directed manipulative actions, such as those commonly used by primates during most of their daily activities. Here we trained two macaques to perform or withhold grasp-to-eat and grasp-to-place actions, depending on the combination of two subsequently presented cues: an auditory go/no-go cue (high/low tone) and a visually presented target (food/object). By varying the order of presentation of the two cues, we could segment and independently evaluate the processing and integration of contextual information allowing the monkey to make a decision on whether or not to act, and what action to perform. We recorded 403 task-related neurons from the ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC): unimodal sensory-driven (37%), motor-related (21%), unimodal sensory-and-motor (23%), and multisensory (19%) neurons. Target and go/no-go selectivity characterized most of the recorded neurons, particularly those endowed with motor-related discharge. Interestingly, multisensory neurons appeared to encode a behavioral decision independently from the sensory modality of the stimulus allowing the monkey to make it: some of them reflected the decision to act or refraining from acting (56%), whereas others (44%) encoded the decision to perform (or withhold) a specific action (e.g., grasp-to-eat). Our findings indicate that VLPFC neurons play a role in the processing of contextual information underlying motor decision during goal-directed manipulative actions. We demonstrated that macaque ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC) neurons show remarkable selectivity for different aspects of the contextual information allowing the monkey to select and execute goal-directed

  4. Selective serotonergic excitation of callosal projection neurons

    Daniel eAvesar

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Serotonin (5-HT acting as a neurotransmitter in the cerebral cortex is critical for cognitive function, yet how 5-HT regulates information processing in cortical circuits is not well understood. We tested the serotonergic responsiveness of layer 5 pyramidal neurons (L5PNs of the mouse medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC, and found 3 distinct response types: long-lasting 5-HT1A (1A receptor-dependent inhibitory responses (84% of L5PNs, 5-HT2A (2A receptor-dependent excitatory responses (9%, and biphasic responses in which 2A-dependent excitation followed brief inhibition (5%. Relative to 5-HT-inhibited neurons, those excited by 5-HT had physiological properties characteristic of callosal/commissural (COM neurons that project to the contralateral cortex. We tested whether serotonergic responses in cortical pyramidal neurons are correlated with their axonal projection pattern using retrograde fluorescent labeling of COM and corticopontine-projecting (CPn neurons. 5-HT generated excitatory or biphasic responses in all 5-HT-responsive layer 5 COM neurons. Conversely, CPn neurons were universally inhibited by 5-HT. Serotonergic excitation of COM neurons was blocked by the 2A antagonist MDL 11939, while serotonergic inhibition of CPn neurons was blocked by the 1A antagonist WAY 100635, confirming a role for these two receptor subtypes in regulating pyramidal neuron activity. Selective serotonergic excitation of COM neurons was not layer-specific, as COM neurons in layer 2/3 were also selectively excited by 5-HT relative to their non-labeled pyramidal neuron neighbors. Because neocortical 2A receptors are implicated in the etiology and pathophysiology of schizophrenia, we propose that COM neurons may represent a novel cellular target for intervention in psychiatric disease.

  5. Direct versus indirect actions of ghrelin on hypothalamic NPY neurons.

    Hashiguchi, Hiroshi; Sheng, Zhenyu; Routh, Vanessa; Gerzanich, Volodymyr; Simard, J Marc; Bryan, Joseph

    2017-01-01

    Assess direct versus indirect action(s) of ghrelin on hypothalamic NPY neurons. Electrophysiology was used to measure ion channel activity in NPY-GFP neurons in slice preparations. Ca2+ imaging was used to monitor ghrelin activation of isolated NPY GFP-labeled neurons. Immunohistochemistry was used to localize Trpm4, SUR1 and Kir6.2 in the hypothalamus. Acylated ghrelin depolarized the membrane potential (MP) of NPY-GFP neurons in brain slices. Depolarization resulted from a decreased input resistance (IR) in ~70% of neurons (15/22) or an increased IR in the remainder (7/22), consistent with the opening or closing of ion channels, respectively. Although tetrodotoxin (TTX) blockade of presynaptic action potentials reduced ghrelin-induced changes in MP and IR, ghrelin still significantly depolarized the MP and decreased IR in TTX-treated neurons, suggesting that ghrelin directly opens cation channel(s) in NPY neurons. In isolated NPY-GFP neurons, ghrelin produced a sustained rise of [Ca2+]c, with an EC50 ~110 pM. Pharmacologic studies confirmed that the direct action of ghrelin was through occupation of the growth hormone secretagogue receptor, GHS-R, and demonstrated the importance of the adenylate cyclase/cAMP/protein kinase A (PKA) and phospholipase C/inositol triphosphate (PLC/IP3) pathways as activators of 5' AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK). Activation of isolated neurons was not affected by CNQX or TTX, but reducing [Na+]o suppressed activation, suggesting a role for Na+-permeable cation channels. SUR1 and two channel partners, Kir6.2 and Trpm4, were identified immunologically in NPY-GFP neurons in situ. The actions of SUR1 and Trpm4 modulators were informative: like ghrelin, diazoxide, a SUR1 agonist, elevated [Ca2+]c and glibenclamide, a SUR1 antagonist, partially suppressed ghrelin action, while 9-phenanthrol and flufenamic acid, selective Trpm4 antagonists, blocked ghrelin actions on isolated neurons. Ghrelin activation was unaffected by nifedipine and

  6. Modulation of orientation-selective neurons by motion: when additive, when multiplicative?

    Torsten eLüdge

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The recurrent interaction among orientation-selective neurons in the primary visual cortex (V1 is suited to enhance contours in a noisy visual scene. Motion is known to have a strong pop-up effect in perceiving contours, but how motion-sensitive neurons in V1 support contour detection remains vastly elusive. Here we suggest how the various types of motion-sensitive neurons observed in V1 should be wired together in a micro-circuitry to optimally extract contours in the visual scene. Motion-sensitive neurons can be selective about the direction of motion occurring at some spot or respond equally to all directions (pandirectional. We show that, in the light of figure-ground segregation, direction-selective motion neurons should additively modulate the corresponding orientation-selective neurons with preferred orientation orthogonal to the motion direction. In turn, to maximally enhance contours, pandirectional motion neurons should multiplicatively modulate all orientation-selective neurons with co-localized receptive fields. This multiplicative modulation amplifies the local V1-circuitry among co-aligned orientation-selective neurons for detecting elongated contours. We suggest that the additive modulation by direction- specific motion neurons is achieved through synaptic projections to the somatic region, and the multiplicative modulation by pandirectional motion neurons through projections to the apical region of orientation-specific pyramidal neurons. For the purpose of contour detection, the V1- intrinsic integration of motion information is advantageous over a downstream integration as it exploits the recurrent V1-circuitry designed for that task.

  7. Neuronal matrix metalloproteinase-9 is a determinant of selective neurodegeneration.

    Kaplan, Artem; Spiller, Krista J; Towne, Christopher; Kanning, Kevin C; Choe, Ginn T; Geber, Adam; Akay, Turgay; Aebischer, Patrick; Henderson, Christopher E

    2014-01-22

    Selective neuronal loss is the hallmark of neurodegenerative diseases. In patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), most motor neurons die but those innervating extraocular, pelvic sphincter, and slow limb muscles exhibit selective resistance. We identified 18 genes that show >10-fold differential expression between resistant and vulnerable motor neurons. One of these, matrix metalloproteinase-9 (MMP-9), is expressed only by fast motor neurons, which are selectively vulnerable. In ALS model mice expressing mutant superoxide dismutase (SOD1), reduction of MMP-9 function using gene ablation, viral gene therapy, or pharmacological inhibition significantly delayed muscle denervation. In the presence of mutant SOD1, MMP-9 expressed by fast motor neurons themselves enhances activation of ER stress and is sufficient to trigger axonal die-back. These findings define MMP-9 as a candidate therapeutic target for ALS. The molecular basis of neuronal diversity thus provides significant insights into mechanisms of selective vulnerability to neurodegeneration. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Effect of feature-selective attention on neuronal responses in macaque area MT

    Chen, X.; Hoffmann, K.-P.; Albright, T. D.

    2012-01-01

    Attention influences visual processing in striate and extrastriate cortex, which has been extensively studied for spatial-, object-, and feature-based attention. Most studies exploring neural signatures of feature-based attention have trained animals to attend to an object identified by a certain feature and ignore objects/displays identified by a different feature. Little is known about the effects of feature-selective attention, where subjects attend to one stimulus feature domain (e.g., color) of an object while features from different domains (e.g., direction of motion) of the same object are ignored. To study this type of feature-selective attention in area MT in the middle temporal sulcus, we trained macaque monkeys to either attend to and report the direction of motion of a moving sine wave grating (a feature for which MT neurons display strong selectivity) or attend to and report its color (a feature for which MT neurons have very limited selectivity). We hypothesized that neurons would upregulate their firing rate during attend-direction conditions compared with attend-color conditions. We found that feature-selective attention significantly affected 22% of MT neurons. Contrary to our hypothesis, these neurons did not necessarily increase firing rate when animals attended to direction of motion but fell into one of two classes. In one class, attention to color increased the gain of stimulus-induced responses compared with attend-direction conditions. The other class displayed the opposite effects. Feature-selective activity modulations occurred earlier in neurons modulated by attention to color compared with neurons modulated by attention to motion direction. Thus feature-selective attention influences neuronal processing in macaque area MT but often exhibited a mismatch between the preferred stimulus dimension (direction of motion) and the preferred attention dimension (attention to color). PMID:22170961

  9. Direct Neuronal Reprogramming for Disease Modeling Studies Using Patient-Derived Neurons: What Have We Learned?

    Janelle Drouin-Ouellet

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Direct neuronal reprogramming, by which a neuron is formed via direct conversion from a somatic cell without going through a pluripotent intermediate stage, allows for the possibility of generating patient-derived neurons. A unique feature of these so-called induced neurons (iNs is the potential to maintain aging and epigenetic signatures of the donor, which is critical given that many diseases of the CNS are age related. Here, we review the published literature on the work that has been undertaken using iNs to model human brain disorders. Furthermore, as disease-modeling studies using this direct neuronal reprogramming approach are becoming more widely adopted, it is important to assess the criteria that are used to characterize the iNs, especially in relation to the extent to which they are mature adult neurons. In particular: i what constitutes an iN cell, ii which stages of conversion offer the earliest/optimal time to assess features that are specific to neurons and/or a disorder and iii whether generating subtype-specific iNs is critical to the disease-related features that iNs express. Finally, we discuss the range of potential biomedical applications that can be explored using patient-specific models of neurological disorders with iNs, and the challenges that will need to be overcome in order to realize these applications.

  10. Directional Darwinian Selection in proteins.

    McClellan, David A

    2013-01-01

    Molecular evolution is a very active field of research, with several complementary approaches, including dN/dS, HON90, MM01, and others. Each has documented strengths and weaknesses, and no one approach provides a clear picture of how natural selection works at the molecular level. The purpose of this work is to present a simple new method that uses quantitative amino acid properties to identify and characterize directional selection in proteins. Inferred amino acid replacements are viewed through the prism of a single physicochemical property to determine the amount and direction of change caused by each replacement. This allows the calculation of the probability that the mean change in the single property associated with the amino acid replacements is equal to zero (H0: μ = 0; i.e., no net change) using a simple two-tailed t-test. Example data from calanoid and cyclopoid copepod cytochrome oxidase subunit I sequence pairs are presented to demonstrate how directional selection may be linked to major shifts in adaptive zones, and that convergent evolution at the whole organism level may be the result of convergent protein adaptations. Rather than replace previous methods, this new method further complements existing methods to provide a holistic glimpse of how natural selection shapes protein structure and function over evolutionary time.

  11. Dendrites Enable a Robust Mechanism for Neuronal Stimulus Selectivity.

    Cazé, Romain D; Jarvis, Sarah; Foust, Amanda J; Schultz, Simon R

    2017-09-01

    Hearing, vision, touch: underlying all of these senses is stimulus selectivity, a robust information processing operation in which cortical neurons respond more to some stimuli than to others. Previous models assume that these neurons receive the highest weighted input from an ensemble encoding the preferred stimulus, but dendrites enable other possibilities. Nonlinear dendritic processing can produce stimulus selectivity based on the spatial distribution of synapses, even if the total preferred stimulus weight does not exceed that of nonpreferred stimuli. Using a multi-subunit nonlinear model, we demonstrate that stimulus selectivity can arise from the spatial distribution of synapses. We propose this as a general mechanism for information processing by neurons possessing dendritic trees. Moreover, we show that this implementation of stimulus selectivity increases the neuron's robustness to synaptic and dendritic failure. Importantly, our model can maintain stimulus selectivity for a larger range of loss of synapses or dendrites than an equivalent linear model. We then use a layer 2/3 biophysical neuron model to show that our implementation is consistent with two recent experimental observations: (1) one can observe a mixture of selectivities in dendrites that can differ from the somatic selectivity, and (2) hyperpolarization can broaden somatic tuning without affecting dendritic tuning. Our model predicts that an initially nonselective neuron can become selective when depolarized. In addition to motivating new experiments, the model's increased robustness to synapses and dendrites loss provides a starting point for fault-resistant neuromorphic chip development.

  12. Bi-directionally protective communication between neurons and astrocytes under ischemia

    Xiao-Mei Wu

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The extensive existing knowledge on bi-directional communication between astrocytes and neurons led us to hypothesize that not only ischemia-preconditioned (IP astrocytes can protect neurons but also IP neurons protect astrocytes from lethal ischemic injury. Here, we demonstrated for the first time that neurons have a significant role in protecting astrocytes from ischemic injury. The cultured medium from IP neurons (IPcNCM induced a remarkable reduction in LDH and an increase in cell viability in ischemic astrocytes in vitro. Selective neuronal loss by kainic acid injection induced a significant increase in apoptotic astrocyte numbers in the brain of ischemic rats in vivo. Furthermore, TUNEL analysis, DNA ladder assay, and the measurements of ROS, GSH, pro- and anti-apoptotic factors, anti-oxidant enzymes and signal molecules in vitro and/or in vivo demonstrated that IP neurons protect astrocytes by an EPO-mediated inhibition of pro-apoptotic signals, activation of anti-apoptotic proteins via the P13K/ERK/STAT5 pathways and activation of anti-oxidant proteins via up-regulation of anti-oxidant enzymes. We demonstrated the existence of astro-protection by IP neurons under ischemia and proposed that the bi-directionally protective communications between cells might be a common activity in the brain or peripheral organs under most if not all pathological conditions.

  13. Bi-directionally protective communication between neurons and astrocytes under ischemia.

    Wu, Xiao-Mei; Qian, Christopher; Zhou, Yu-Fu; Yan, Yick-Chun; Luo, Qian-Qian; Yung, Wing-Ho; Zhang, Fa-Li; Jiang, Li-Rong; Qian, Zhong Ming; Ke, Ya

    2017-10-01

    The extensive existing knowledge on bi-directional communication between astrocytes and neurons led us to hypothesize that not only ischemia-preconditioned (IP) astrocytes can protect neurons but also IP neurons protect astrocytes from lethal ischemic injury. Here, we demonstrated for the first time that neurons have a significant role in protecting astrocytes from ischemic injury. The cultured medium from IP neurons (IPcNCM) induced a remarkable reduction in LDH and an increase in cell viability in ischemic astrocytes in vitro. Selective neuronal loss by kainic acid injection induced a significant increase in apoptotic astrocyte numbers in the brain of ischemic rats in vivo. Furthermore, TUNEL analysis, DNA ladder assay, and the measurements of ROS, GSH, pro- and anti-apoptotic factors, anti-oxidant enzymes and signal molecules in vitro and/or in vivo demonstrated that IP neurons protect astrocytes by an EPO-mediated inhibition of pro-apoptotic signals, activation of anti-apoptotic proteins via the P13K/ERK/STAT5 pathways and activation of anti-oxidant proteins via up-regulation of anti-oxidant enzymes. We demonstrated the existence of astro-protection by IP neurons under ischemia and proposed that the bi-directionally protective communications between cells might be a common activity in the brain or peripheral organs under most if not all pathological conditions. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Genetically-directed, cell type-specific sparse labeling for the analysis of neuronal morphology.

    Thomas Rotolo

    Full Text Available In mammals, genetically-directed cell labeling technologies have not yet been applied to the morphologic analysis of neurons with very large and complex arbors, an application that requires extremely sparse labeling and that is only rendered practical by limiting the labeled population to one or a few predetermined neuronal subtypes.In the present study we have addressed this application by using CreER technology to non-invasively label very small numbers of neurons so that their morphologies can be fully visualized. Four lines of IRES-CreER knock-in mice were constructed to permit labeling selectively in cholinergic or catecholaminergic neurons [choline acetyltransferase (ChAT-IRES-CreER or tyrosine hydroxylase (TH-IRES-CreER], predominantly in projection neurons [neurofilament light chain (NFL-IRES-CreER], or broadly in neurons and some glia [vesicle-associated membrane protein2 (VAMP2-IRES-CreER]. When crossed to the Z/AP reporter and exposed to 4-hydroxytamoxifen in the early postnatal period, the number of neurons expressing the human placental alkaline phosphatase reporter can be reproducibly lowered to fewer than 50 per brain. Sparse Cre-mediated recombination in ChAT-IRES-CreER;Z/AP mice shows the full axonal and dendritic arbors of individual forebrain cholinergic neurons, the first time that the complete morphologies of these very large neurons have been revealed in any species.Sparse genetically-directed, cell type-specific neuronal labeling with IRES-creER lines should prove useful for studying a wide variety of questions in neuronal development and disease.

  15. Direct action of low doses of radiation of neurons

    Peimer, S.I.; Dudkin, A.O.; Sverdlov, A.G.

    1986-01-01

    The authors experiment with new technology of surviving mammalian brain sections for the detection of the direct action of ionizing radiation on the functioning neurons of mammals. The authors selected the rat hippocampus as the object of investigation. Sections of the hippocampus were prepared according to standard procedure, 0.3 mm thick, and incubated for several hours under the following conditions: temperature 35.5 0 C, rate of perfusion 2-3 ml/min, rate of delivery of a mixture of oxygen (95%), and carbon monoxide (5%), in the perfusion solution 35 ml/min. Composition of solution (mM): NaCl 124, KCl 5, CACl 2 2.4, MgSO 4 1.3, NaHCO 3 26, glucose 10; pH 7.4. In an individual series of experiments, calcium was not added to the solution, but an excess of magnesium ions was introduced up to 2.6 mM. Extracellular takeoffs were performed with glass microelectrodes. For irradiation, the authors used sources of x-rays and gamma radiation. In the 5-DI x-ray apparatus, the working voltage and current on the tube were 50 quanta and 8 mA, respectively; there were no filters. Gamma irradiation was performed using ampuls with the radionuclide cesium-137 (IGI-C-3 type), which can be delivered on a holder directly to the section for 1 min

  16. Direct projections from hypothalamic orexin neurons to brainstem cardiac vagal neurons.

    Dergacheva, Olga; Yamanaka, Akihiro; Schwartz, Alan R; Polotsky, Vsevolod Y; Mendelowitz, David

    2016-12-17

    Orexin neurons are known to augment the sympathetic control of cardiovascular function, however the role of orexin neurons in parasympathetic cardiac regulation remains unclear. To test the hypothesis that orexin neurons contribute to parasympathetic control we selectively expressed channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2) in orexin neurons in orexin-Cre transgenic rats and examined postsynaptic currents in cardiac vagal neurons (CVNs) in the dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus (DMV). Simultaneous photostimulation and recording in ChR2-expressing orexin neurons in the lateral hypothalamus resulted in reliable action potential firing as well as large whole-cell currents suggesting a strong expression of ChR2 and reliable optogenetic excitation. Photostimulation of ChR2-expressing fibers in the DMV elicited short-latency (ranging from 3.2ms to 8.5ms) postsynaptic currents in 16 out of 44 CVNs tested. These responses were heterogeneous and included excitatory glutamatergic (63%) and inhibitory GABAergic (37%) postsynaptic currents. The results from this study suggest different sub-population of orexin neurons may exert diverse influences on brainstem CVNs and therefore may play distinct functional roles in parasympathetic control of the heart. Copyright © 2016 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Directed neuronal differentiation of human embryonic stem cells

    Noggle Scott A

    2003-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background We have developed a culture system for the efficient and directed differentiation of human embryonic stem cells (HESCs to neural precursors and neurons. HESC were maintained by manual passaging and were differentiated to a morphologically distinct OCT-4+/SSEA-4- monolayer cell type prior to the derivation of embryoid bodies. Embryoid bodies were grown in suspension in serum free conditions, in the presence of 50% conditioned medium from the human hepatocarcinoma cell line HepG2 (MedII. Results A neural precursor population was observed within HESC derived serum free embryoid bodies cultured in MedII conditioned medium, around 7–10 days after derivation. The neural precursors were organized into rosettes comprised of a central cavity surrounded by ring of cells, 4 to 8 cells in width. The central cells within rosettes were proliferating, as indicated by the presence of condensed mitotic chromosomes and by phosphoHistone H3 immunostaining. When plated and maintained in adherent culture, the rosettes of neural precursors were surrounded by large interwoven networks of neurites. Immunostaining demonstrated the expression of nestin in rosettes and associated non-neuronal cell types, and a radial expression of Map-2 in rosettes. Differentiated neurons expressed the markers Map-2 and Neurofilament H, and a subpopulation of the neurons expressed tyrosine hydroxylase, a marker for dopaminergic neurons. Conclusion This novel directed differentiation approach led to the efficient derivation of neuronal cultures from HESCs, including the differentiation of tyrosine hydroxylase expressing neurons. HESC were morphologically differentiated to a monolayer OCT-4+ cell type, which was used to derive embryoid bodies directly into serum free conditions. Exposure to the MedII conditioned medium enhanced the derivation of neural precursors, the first example of the effect of this conditioned medium on HESC.

  18. Temporally selective processing of communication signals by auditory midbrain neurons

    Elliott, Taffeta M; Christensen-Dalsgaard, Jakob; Kelley, Darcy B

    2011-01-01

    click rates ranged from 4 to 50 Hz, the rate at which the clicks begin to overlap. Frequency selectivity and temporal processing were characterized using response-intensity curves, temporal-discharge patterns, and autocorrelations of reduplicated responses to click trains. Characteristic frequencies...... of the rate of clicks in calls. The majority of neurons (85%) were selective for click rates, and this selectivity remained unchanged over sound levels 10 to 20 dB above threshold. Selective neurons give phasic, tonic, or adapting responses to tone bursts and click trains. Some algorithms that could compute...

  19. The spatial patterns of directional phenotypic selection

    Siepielski, Adam M.; Gotanda, Kiyoko M.; Morrissey, Michael B.; Diamond, Sarah E.; DiBattista, Joseph; Carlson, Stephanie Marie

    2013-01-01

    the spatial patterns of selection, namely the extent of variation among populations in the strength and direction of selection. Here, we analyse a data set of spatially replicated studies of directional phenotypic selection from natural populations. The data

  20. Selective neuronal vulnerability to oxidative stress in the brain

    Xinkun Wang

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Oxidative stress (OS, caused by the imbalance between the generation and detoxification of reactive oxygen and nitrogen species (ROS/RNS, plays an important role in brain aging, neurodegenerative diseases, and other related adverse conditions, such as ischemia. While ROS/RNS serve as signaling molecules at physiological levels, an excessive amount of these molecules leads to oxidative modification and, therefore, dysfunction of proteins, nucleic acids, and lipids. The response of neurons to this pervasive stress, however, is not uniform in the brain. While many brain neurons can cope with a rise in OS, there are select populations of neurons in the brain that are vulnerable. Because of their selective vulnerability, these neurons are usually the first to exhibit functional decline and cell death during normal aging, or in age-associated neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease. Understanding the molecular and cellular mechanisms of selective neuronal vulnerability (SNV to OS is important in the development of future intervention approaches to protect such vulnerable neurons from the stresses of the aging process and the pathological states that lead to neurodegeneration. In this review, the currently known molecular and cellular factors that contribute to SNV to OS are summarized. Included among the major underlying factors are high intrinsic OS, high demand for ROS/RNS-based signaling, low ATP production, mitochondrial dysfunction, and high inflammatory response in vulnerable neurons. The contribution to the selective vulnerability of neurons to OS by other intrinsic or extrinsic factors, such as deficient DNA damage repair, low calcium-buffering capacity, and glutamate excitotoxicity, are also discussed.

  1. Goal-Directed Decision Making with Spiking Neurons.

    Friedrich, Johannes; Lengyel, Máté

    2016-02-03

    Behavioral and neuroscientific data on reward-based decision making point to a fundamental distinction between habitual and goal-directed action selection. The formation of habits, which requires simple updating of cached values, has been studied in great detail, and the reward prediction error theory of dopamine function has enjoyed prominent success in accounting for its neural bases. In contrast, the neural circuit mechanisms of goal-directed decision making, requiring extended iterative computations to estimate values online, are still unknown. Here we present a spiking neural network that provably solves the difficult online value estimation problem underlying goal-directed decision making in a near-optimal way and reproduces behavioral as well as neurophysiological experimental data on tasks ranging from simple binary choice to sequential decision making. Our model uses local plasticity rules to learn the synaptic weights of a simple neural network to achieve optimal performance and solves one-step decision-making tasks, commonly considered in neuroeconomics, as well as more challenging sequential decision-making tasks within 1 s. These decision times, and their parametric dependence on task parameters, as well as the final choice probabilities match behavioral data, whereas the evolution of neural activities in the network closely mimics neural responses recorded in frontal cortices during the execution of such tasks. Our theory provides a principled framework to understand the neural underpinning of goal-directed decision making and makes novel predictions for sequential decision-making tasks with multiple rewards. Goal-directed actions requiring prospective planning pervade decision making, but their circuit-level mechanisms remain elusive. We show how a model circuit of biologically realistic spiking neurons can solve this computationally challenging problem in a novel way. The synaptic weights of our network can be learned using local plasticity rules

  2. Phenotypic selection in natural populations: what limits directional selection?

    Kingsolver, Joel G; Diamond, Sarah E

    2011-03-01

    Studies of phenotypic selection document directional selection in many natural populations. What factors reduce total directional selection and the cumulative evolutionary responses to selection? We combine two data sets for phenotypic selection, representing more than 4,600 distinct estimates of selection from 143 studies, to evaluate the potential roles of fitness trade-offs, indirect (correlated) selection, temporally varying selection, and stabilizing selection for reducing net directional selection and cumulative responses to selection. We detected little evidence that trade-offs among different fitness components reduced total directional selection in most study systems. Comparisons of selection gradients and selection differentials suggest that correlated selection frequently reduced total selection on size but not on other types of traits. The direction of selection on a trait often changes over time in many temporally replicated studies, but these fluctuations have limited impact in reducing cumulative directional selection in most study systems. Analyses of quadratic selection gradients indicated stabilizing selection on body size in at least some studies but provided little evidence that stabilizing selection is more common than disruptive selection for most traits or study systems. Our analyses provide little evidence that fitness trade-offs, correlated selection, or stabilizing selection strongly constrains the directional selection reported for most quantitative traits.

  3. The mast cell degranulator compound 48/80 directly activates neurons.

    Michael Schemann

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Compound 48/80 is widely used in animal and tissue models as a "selective" mast cell activator. With this study we demonstrate that compound 48/80 also directly activates enteric neurons and visceral afferents. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We used in vivo recordings from extrinsic intestinal afferents together with Ca(++ imaging from primary cultures of DRG and nodose neurons. Enteric neuronal activation was examined by Ca(++ and voltage sensitive dye imaging in isolated gut preparations and primary cultures of enteric neurons. Intraluminal application of compound 48/80 evoked marked afferent firing which desensitized on subsequent administration. In egg albumen-sensitized animals, intraluminal antigen evoked a similar pattern of afferent activation which also desensitized on subsequent exposure to antigen. In cross-desensitization experiments prior administration of compound 48/80 failed to influence the mast cell mediated response. Application of 1 and 10 µg/ml compound 48/80 evoked spike discharge and Ca(++ transients in enteric neurons. The same nerve activating effect was observed in primary cultures of DRG and nodose ganglion cells. Enteric neuron cultures were devoid of mast cells confirmed by negative staining for c-kit or toluidine blue. In addition, in cultured enteric neurons the excitatory action of compound 48/80 was preserved in the presence of histamine H(1 and H(2 antagonists. The mast cell stabilizer cromolyn attenuated compound 48/80 and nicotine evoked Ca(++ transients in mast cell-free enteric neuron cultures. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The results showed direct excitatory action of compound 48/80 on enteric neurons and visceral afferents. Therefore, functional changes measured in tissue or animal models may involve a mast cell independent effect of compound 48/80 and cromolyn.

  4. Modeling the phenotype of spinal muscular atrophy by the direct conversion of human fibroblasts to motor neurons.

    Zhang, Qi-Jie; Li, Jin-Jing; Lin, Xiang; Lu, Ying-Qian; Guo, Xin-Xin; Dong, En-Lin; Zhao, Miao; He, Jin; Wang, Ning; Chen, Wan-Jin

    2017-02-14

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is a lethal autosomal recessive neurological disease characterized by selective degeneration of motor neurons in the spinal cord. In recent years, the development of cellular reprogramming technology has provided an alternative and effective method for obtaining patient-specific neurons in vitro. In the present study, we applied this technology to the field of SMA to acquire patient-specific induced motor neurons that were directly converted from fibroblasts via the forced expression of 8 defined transcription factors. The infected fibroblasts began to grow in a dipolar manner, and the nuclei gradually enlarged. Typical Tuj1-positive neurons were generated at day 23. After day 35, induced neurons with multiple neurites were observed, and these neurons also expressed the hallmarks of Tuj1, HB9, ISL1 and CHAT. The conversion efficiencies were approximately 5.8% and 5.5% in the SMA and control groups, respectively. Additionally, the SMA-induced neurons exhibited a significantly reduced neurite outgrowth rate compared with the control neurons. After day 60, the SMA-induced neurons also exhibited a liability of neuronal degeneration and remarkable fracturing of the neurites was observed. By directly reprogramming fibroblasts, we established a feeder-free conversion system to acquire SMA patient-specific induced motor neurons that partially modeled the phenotype of SMA in vitro.

  5. Neuronal effects of nicotine during auditory selective attention.

    Smucny, Jason; Olincy, Ann; Eichman, Lindsay S; Tregellas, Jason R

    2015-06-01

    Although the attention-enhancing effects of nicotine have been behaviorally and neurophysiologically well-documented, its localized functional effects during selective attention are poorly understood. In this study, we examined the neuronal effects of nicotine during auditory selective attention in healthy human nonsmokers. We hypothesized to observe significant effects of nicotine in attention-associated brain areas, driven by nicotine-induced increases in activity as a function of increasing task demands. A single-blind, prospective, randomized crossover design was used to examine neuronal response associated with a go/no-go task after 7 mg nicotine or placebo patch administration in 20 individuals who underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging at 3T. The task design included two levels of difficulty (ordered vs. random stimuli) and two levels of auditory distraction (silence vs. noise). Significant treatment × difficulty × distraction interaction effects on neuronal response were observed in the hippocampus, ventral parietal cortex, and anterior cingulate. In contrast to our hypothesis, U and inverted U-shaped dependencies were observed between the effects of nicotine on response and task demands, depending on the brain area. These results suggest that nicotine may differentially affect neuronal response depending on task conditions. These results have important theoretical implications for understanding how cholinergic tone may influence the neurobiology of selective attention.

  6. Finding Direction in the Search for Selection.

    Thiltgen, Grant; Dos Reis, Mario; Goldstein, Richard A

    2017-01-01

    Tests for positive selection have mostly been developed to look for diversifying selection where change away from the current amino acid is often favorable. However, in many cases we are interested in directional selection where there is a shift toward specific amino acids, resulting in increased fitness in the species. Recently, a few methods have been developed to detect and characterize directional selection on a molecular level. Using the results of evolutionary simulations as well as HIV drug resistance data as models of directional selection, we compare two such methods with each other, as well as against a standard method for detecting diversifying selection. We find that the method to detect diversifying selection also detects directional selection under certain conditions. One method developed for detecting directional selection is powerful and accurate for a wide range of conditions, while the other can generate an excessive number of false positives.

  7. Target selection for direct marketing.

    Bult, Jan Roelf

    1993-01-01

    In this thesis we concentrated on the use ol direct mail for targeting potential buyers. The major characteristics that influences the success of a plomotional direct mail campaign are the of-fbr,the communication elements, the timing or sequence of these communication elements, and the list of

  8. Synchronization stability and pattern selection in a memristive neuronal network.

    Wang, Chunni; Lv, Mi; Alsaedi, Ahmed; Ma, Jun

    2017-11-01

    Spatial pattern formation and selection depend on the intrinsic self-organization and cooperation between nodes in spatiotemporal systems. Based on a memory neuron model, a regular network with electromagnetic induction is proposed to investigate the synchronization and pattern selection. In our model, the memristor is used to bridge the coupling between the magnetic flux and the membrane potential, and the induction current results from the time-varying electromagnetic field contributed by the exchange of ion currents and the distribution of charged ions. The statistical factor of synchronization predicts the transition of synchronization and pattern stability. The bifurcation analysis of the sampled time series for the membrane potential reveals the mode transition in electrical activity and pattern selection. A formation mechanism is outlined to account for the emergence of target waves. Although an external stimulus is imposed on each neuron uniformly, the diversity in the magnetic flux and the induction current leads to emergence of target waves in the studied network.

  9. Synchronization stability and pattern selection in a memristive neuronal network

    Wang, Chunni; Lv, Mi; Alsaedi, Ahmed; Ma, Jun

    2017-11-01

    Spatial pattern formation and selection depend on the intrinsic self-organization and cooperation between nodes in spatiotemporal systems. Based on a memory neuron model, a regular network with electromagnetic induction is proposed to investigate the synchronization and pattern selection. In our model, the memristor is used to bridge the coupling between the magnetic flux and the membrane potential, and the induction current results from the time-varying electromagnetic field contributed by the exchange of ion currents and the distribution of charged ions. The statistical factor of synchronization predicts the transition of synchronization and pattern stability. The bifurcation analysis of the sampled time series for the membrane potential reveals the mode transition in electrical activity and pattern selection. A formation mechanism is outlined to account for the emergence of target waves. Although an external stimulus is imposed on each neuron uniformly, the diversity in the magnetic flux and the induction current leads to emergence of target waves in the studied network.

  10. Selectivity of neuronal [3H]GABA accumulation in the visual cortex as revealed by Golgi staining of the labeled neurons

    Somogyi, P.; Freund, T.F.; Kisvarday, Z.F.; Halasz, N.

    1981-01-01

    [ 3 H]GABA was injected into the visual cortex of rats in vivo. The labeled amino acid was demonstrated by autoradiography using semithin sections of Golgi material. Selective accumulation was seen in the perikarya of Golgi-stained, gold-toned, aspinous stellate neurons. Spine-laden pyramidal-like cells did not show labeling. This method gives direct information about the dendritic arborization of a neuron, and its putative transmitter, and allows the identification of its synaptic connections. (Auth.)

  11. Tlx3 promotes glutamatergic neuronal subtype specification through direct interactions with the chromatin modifier CBP.

    Atsushi Shimomura

    Full Text Available Nervous system development relies on the generation of precise numbers of excitatory and inhibitory neurons. The homeodomain transcription factor, T-cell leukemia 3 (Tlx3, functions as the master neuronal fate regulator by instructively promoting the specification of glutamatergic excitatory neurons and suppressing the specification of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABAergic neurons. However, how Tlx3 promotes glutamatergic neuronal subtype specification is poorly understood. In this study, we found that Tlx3 directly interacts with the epigenetic co-activator cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP-response element-binding protein (CREB-binding protein (CBP and that the Tlx3 homeodomain is essential for this interaction. The interaction between Tlx3 and CBP was enhanced by the three amino acid loop extension (TALE-class homeodomain transcription factor, pre-B-cell leukemia transcription factor 3 (Pbx3. Using mouse embryonic stem (ES cells stably expressing Tlx3, we found that the interaction between Tlx3 and CBP became detectable only after these Tlx3-expressing ES cells were committed to a neural lineage, which coincided with increased Pbx3 expression during neural differentiation from ES cells. Forced expression of mutated Tlx3 lacking the homeodomain in ES cells undergoing neural differentiation resulted in significantly reduced expression of glutamatergic neuronal subtype markers, but had little effect on the expression on pan neural markers. Collectively, our results strongly suggest that functional interplay between Tlx3 and CBP plays a critical role in neuronal subtype specification, providing novel insights into the epigenetic regulatory mechanism that modulates the transcriptional efficacy of a selective set of neuronal subtype-specific genes during differentiation.

  12. Cell-type Dependent Alzheimer's Disease Phenotypes: Probing the Biology of Selective Neuronal Vulnerability

    Christina R. Muratore

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Summary: Alzheimer's disease (AD induces memory and cognitive impairment in the absence of motor and sensory deficits during its early and middle course. A major unresolved question is the basis for this selective neuronal vulnerability. Aβ, which plays a central role in AD pathogenesis, is generated throughout the brain, yet some regions outside of the limbic and cerebral cortices are relatively spared from Aβ plaque deposition and synapse loss. Here, we examine neurons derived from iPSCs of patients harboring an amyloid precursor protein mutation to quantify AD-relevant phenotypes following directed differentiation to rostral fates of the brain (vulnerable and caudal fates (relatively spared in AD. We find that both the generation of Aβ and the responsiveness of TAU to Aβ are affected by neuronal cell type, with rostral neurons being more sensitive than caudal neurons. Thus, cell-autonomous factors may in part dictate the pattern of selective regional vulnerability in human neurons in AD. : In this article, Muratore et al. examine differential vulnerability of neuronal subtypes in AD by directing iPSC lines from control and familial AD subjects to different regional neuronal fates. APP processing and TAU proteostasis are differentially affected between regional fates, such that neuronal cell type dictates generation of and responsiveness to Aβ. Keywords: Alzheimer's disease, disease modeling, iPSCs, neural stem cells, Abeta, Tau, selective vulnerability, amyloid, familial AD, differential susceptibility

  13. Corticothalamic Synaptic Noise as a Mechanism for Selective Attention in Thalamic Neurons

    Béhuret, Sébastien; Deleuze, Charlotte; Bal, Thierry

    2015-01-01

    A reason why the thalamus is more than a passive gateway for sensory signals is that two-third of the synapses of thalamocortical neurons are directly or indirectly related to the activity of corticothalamic axons. While the responses of thalamocortical neurons evoked by sensory stimuli are well characterized, with ON- and OFF-center receptive field structures, the prevalence of synaptic noise resulting from neocortical feedback in intracellularly recorded thalamocortical neurons in vivo has attracted little attention. However, in vitro and modeling experiments point to its critical role for the integration of sensory signals. Here we combine our recent findings in a unified framework suggesting the hypothesis that corticothalamic synaptic activity is adapted to modulate the transfer efficiency of thalamocortical neurons during selective attention at three different levels: First, on ionic channels by interacting with intrinsic membrane properties, second at the neuron level by impacting on the input-output gain, and third even more effectively at the cell assembly level by boosting the information transfer of sensory features encoded in thalamic subnetworks. This top-down population control is achieved by tuning the correlations in subthreshold membrane potential fluctuations and is adapted to modulate the transfer of sensory features encoded by assemblies of thalamocortical relay neurons. We thus propose that cortically-controlled (de-)correlation of subthreshold noise is an efficient and swift dynamic mechanism for selective attention in the thalamus. PMID:26733818

  14. Corticothalamic Synaptic Noise as a Mechanism for Selective Attention in Thalamic Neurons.

    Béhuret, Sébastien; Deleuze, Charlotte; Bal, Thierry

    2015-01-01

    A reason why the thalamus is more than a passive gateway for sensory signals is that two-third of the synapses of thalamocortical neurons are directly or indirectly related to the activity of corticothalamic axons. While the responses of thalamocortical neurons evoked by sensory stimuli are well characterized, with ON- and OFF-center receptive field structures, the prevalence of synaptic noise resulting from neocortical feedback in intracellularly recorded thalamocortical neurons in vivo has attracted little attention. However, in vitro and modeling experiments point to its critical role for the integration of sensory signals. Here we combine our recent findings in a unified framework suggesting the hypothesis that corticothalamic synaptic activity is adapted to modulate the transfer efficiency of thalamocortical neurons during selective attention at three different levels: First, on ionic channels by interacting with intrinsic membrane properties, second at the neuron level by impacting on the input-output gain, and third even more effectively at the cell assembly level by boosting the information transfer of sensory features encoded in thalamic subnetworks. This top-down population control is achieved by tuning the correlations in subthreshold membrane potential fluctuations and is adapted to modulate the transfer of sensory features encoded by assemblies of thalamocortical relay neurons. We thus propose that cortically-controlled (de-)correlation of subthreshold noise is an efficient and swift dynamic mechanism for selective attention in the thalamus.

  15. Corticothalamic Synaptic Noise as a Mechanism for Selective Attention in Thalamic Neurons

    Sébastien eBéhuret

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available A reason why the thalamus is more than a passive gateway for sensory signals is that two-third of the synapses of thalamocortical neurons are directly or indirectly related to the activity of corticothalamic axons. While the responses of thalamocortical neurons evoked by sensory stimuli are well characterized, with ON- and OFF-center receptive field structures, the prevalence of synaptic noise resulting from neocortical feedback in intracellularly recorded thalamocortical neurons in vivo has attracted little attention. However, in vitro and modeling experiments point to its critical role for the integration of sensory signals. Here we combine our recent findings in a unified framework suggesting the hypothesis that corticothalamic synaptic activity is adapted to modulate the transfer efficiency of thalamocortical neurons during selective attention at three different levels: First, on ionic channels by interacting with intrinsic membrane properties, second at the neuron level by impacting on the input-output gain, and third even more effectively at the cell assembly level by boosting the information transfer of sensory features encoded in thalamic subnetworks. This top-down population control is achieved by tuning the correlations in subthreshold membrane potential fluctuations and is adapted to modulate the transfer of sensory features encoded by assemblies of thalamocortical relay neurons. We thus propose that cortically-controlled (de-correlation of subthreshold noise is an efficient and swift dynamic mechanism for selective attention in the thalamus.

  16. Finding Direction in the Search for Selection

    Thiltgen, G.; Dos Reis, M.; Goldstein, R. A.

    2016-01-01

    Tests for positive selection have mostly been developed to look for diversifying selection where change away from the current amino acid is often favorable. However, in many cases we are interested in directional selection where there is a shift toward specific amino acids, resulting in increased fitness in the species. Recently, a few methods have been developed to detect and characterize directional selection on a molecular level. Using the results of evolutionary simulations as well as HIV...

  17. A Neuronal Network Model for Pitch Selectivity and Representation.

    Huang, Chengcheng; Rinzel, John

    2016-01-01

    Pitch is a perceptual correlate of periodicity. Sounds with distinct spectra can elicit the same pitch. Despite the importance of pitch perception, understanding the cellular mechanism of pitch perception is still a major challenge and a mechanistic model of pitch is lacking. A multi-stage neuronal network model is developed for pitch frequency estimation using biophysically-based, high-resolution coincidence detector neurons. The neuronal units respond only to highly coincident input among convergent auditory nerve fibers across frequency channels. Their selectivity for only very fast rising slopes of convergent input enables these slope-detectors to distinguish the most prominent coincidences in multi-peaked input time courses. Pitch can then be estimated from the first-order interspike intervals of the slope-detectors. The regular firing pattern of the slope-detector neurons are similar for sounds sharing the same pitch despite the distinct timbres. The decoded pitch strengths also correlate well with the salience of pitch perception as reported by human listeners. Therefore, our model can serve as a neural representation for pitch. Our model performs successfully in estimating the pitch of missing fundamental complexes and reproducing the pitch variation with respect to the frequency shift of inharmonic complexes. It also accounts for the phase sensitivity of pitch perception in the cases of Schroeder phase, alternating phase and random phase relationships. Moreover, our model can also be applied to stochastic sound stimuli, iterated-ripple-noise, and account for their multiple pitch perceptions.

  18. The spatial patterns of directional phenotypic selection.

    Siepielski, Adam M; Gotanda, Kiyoko M; Morrissey, Michael B; Diamond, Sarah E; DiBattista, Joseph D; Carlson, Stephanie M

    2013-11-01

    Local adaptation, adaptive population divergence and speciation are often expected to result from populations evolving in response to spatial variation in selection. Yet, we lack a comprehensive understanding of the major features that characterise the spatial patterns of selection, namely the extent of variation among populations in the strength and direction of selection. Here, we analyse a data set of spatially replicated studies of directional phenotypic selection from natural populations. The data set includes 60 studies, consisting of 3937 estimates of selection across an average of five populations. We performed meta-analyses to explore features characterising spatial variation in directional selection. We found that selection tends to vary mainly in strength and less in direction among populations. Although differences in the direction of selection occur among populations they do so where selection is often weakest, which may limit the potential for ongoing adaptive population divergence. Overall, we also found that spatial variation in selection appears comparable to temporal (annual) variation in selection within populations; however, several deficiencies in available data currently complicate this comparison. We discuss future research needs to further advance our understanding of spatial variation in selection. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  19. The spatial patterns of directional phenotypic selection

    Siepielski, Adam M.

    2013-09-12

    Local adaptation, adaptive population divergence and speciation are often expected to result from populations evolving in response to spatial variation in selection. Yet, we lack a comprehensive understanding of the major features that characterise the spatial patterns of selection, namely the extent of variation among populations in the strength and direction of selection. Here, we analyse a data set of spatially replicated studies of directional phenotypic selection from natural populations. The data set includes 60 studies, consisting of 3937 estimates of selection across an average of five populations. We performed meta-analyses to explore features characterising spatial variation in directional selection. We found that selection tends to vary mainly in strength and less in direction among populations. Although differences in the direction of selection occur among populations they do so where selection is often weakest, which may limit the potential for ongoing adaptive population divergence. Overall, we also found that spatial variation in selection appears comparable to temporal (annual) variation in selection within populations; however, several deficiencies in available data currently complicate this comparison. We discuss future research needs to further advance our understanding of spatial variation in selection. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  20. Selective neuronal lapses precede human cognitive lapses following sleep deprivation.

    Nir, Yuval; Andrillon, Thomas; Marmelshtein, Amit; Suthana, Nanthia; Cirelli, Chiara; Tononi, Giulio; Fried, Itzhak

    2017-12-01

    Sleep deprivation is a major source of morbidity with widespread health effects, including increased risk of hypertension, diabetes, obesity, heart attack, and stroke. Moreover, sleep deprivation brings about vehicle accidents and medical errors and is therefore an urgent topic of investigation. During sleep deprivation, homeostatic and circadian processes interact to build up sleep pressure, which results in slow behavioral performance (cognitive lapses) typically attributed to attentional thalamic and frontoparietal circuits, but the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. Recently, through study of electroencephalograms (EEGs) in humans and local field potentials (LFPs) in nonhuman primates and rodents it was found that, during sleep deprivation, regional 'sleep-like' slow and theta (slow/theta) waves co-occur with impaired behavioral performance during wakefulness. Here we used intracranial electrodes to record single-neuron activities and LFPs in human neurosurgical patients performing a face/nonface categorization psychomotor vigilance task (PVT) over multiple experimental sessions, including a session after full-night sleep deprivation. We find that, just before cognitive lapses, the selective spiking responses of individual neurons in the medial temporal lobe (MTL) are attenuated, delayed, and lengthened. These 'neuronal lapses' are evident on a trial-by-trial basis when comparing the slowest behavioral PVT reaction times to the fastest. Furthermore, during cognitive lapses, LFPs exhibit a relative local increase in slow/theta activity that is correlated with degraded single-neuron responses and with baseline theta activity. Our results show that cognitive lapses involve local state-dependent changes in neuronal activity already present in the MTL.

  1. Apparent directional selection by biased pleiotropic mutation.

    Tanaka, Yoshinari

    2010-07-01

    Pleiotropic effects of deleterious mutations are considered to be among the factors responsible for genetic constraints on evolution by long-term directional selection acting on a quantitative trait. If pleiotropic phenotypic effects are biased in a particular direction, mutations generate apparent directional selection, which refers to the covariance between fitness and the trait owing to a linear association between the number of mutations possessed by individuals and the genotypic values of the trait. The present analysis has shown how the equilibrium mean value of the trait is determined by a balance between directional selection and biased pleiotropic mutations. Assuming that genes act additively both on the trait and on fitness, the total variance-standardized directional selection gradient was decomposed into apparent and true components. Experimental data on mutation bias from the bristle traits of Drosophila and life history traits of Daphnia suggest that apparent selection explains a small but significant fraction of directional selection pressure that is observed in nature; the data suggest that changes induced in a trait by biased pleiotropic mutation (i.e., by apparent directional selection) are easily compensated for by (true) directional selection.

  2. Direct evidence for activity-dependent glucose phosphorylation in neurons with implications for the astrocyte-to-neuron lactate shuttle.

    Patel, Anant B; Lai, James C K; Chowdhury, Golam M I; Hyder, Fahmeed; Rothman, Douglas L; Shulman, Robert G; Behar, Kevin L

    2014-04-08

    Previous (13)C magnetic resonance spectroscopy experiments have shown that over a wide range of neuronal activity, approximately one molecule of glucose is oxidized for every molecule of glutamate released by neurons and recycled through astrocytic glutamine. The measured kinetics were shown to agree with the stoichiometry of a hypothetical astrocyte-to-neuron lactate shuttle model, which predicted negligible functional neuronal uptake of glucose. To test this model, we measured the uptake and phosphorylation of glucose in nerve terminals isolated from rats infused with the glucose analog, 2-fluoro-2-deoxy-D-glucose (FDG) in vivo. The concentrations of phosphorylated FDG (FDG6P), normalized with respect to known neuronal metabolites, were compared in nerve terminals, homogenate, and cortex of anesthetized rats with and without bicuculline-induced seizures. The increase in FDG6P in nerve terminals agreed well with the increase in cortical neuronal glucose oxidation measured previously under the same conditions in vivo, indicating that direct uptake and oxidation of glucose in nerve terminals is substantial under resting and activated conditions. These results suggest that neuronal glucose-derived pyruvate is the major oxidative fuel for activated neurons, not lactate-derived from astrocytes, contradicting predictions of the original astrocyte-to-neuron lactate shuttle model under the range of study conditions.

  3. Neuronal basis for evaluating selected action in the primate striatum.

    Yamada, Hiroshi; Inokawa, Hitoshi; Matsumoto, Naoyuki; Ueda, Yasumasa; Kimura, Minoru

    2011-08-01

    Humans and animals optimize their behavior by evaluating outcomes of individual actions and predicting how much reward the actions will yield. While the estimated values of actions guide choice behavior, the choices are also governed by other behavioral norms, such as rules and strategies. Values, rules and strategies are represented in neuronal activity, and the striatum is one of the best qualified brain loci where these signals meet. To understand the role of the striatum in value- and strategy-based decision-making, we recorded striatal neurons in macaque monkeys performing a behavioral task in which they searched for a reward target by trial-and-error among three alternatives, earned a reward for a target choice, and then earned additional rewards for choosing the same target. This task allowed us to examine whether and how values of targets and strategy, which were defined as negative-then-search and positive-then-repeat (or win-stay-lose-switch), are represented in the striatum. Large subsets of striatal neurons encoded positive and negative outcome feedbacks of individual decisions and actions. Once monkeys made a choice, signals related to chosen actions, their values and search- or repeat-type actions increased and persisted until the outcome feedback appeared. Subsets of neurons exhibited a tonic increase in activity after the search- and repeat-choices following negative and positive feedback in the last trials as the task strategy monkeys adapted. These activity profiles as a heterogeneous representation of decision variables may underlie a part of the process for reinforcement- and strategy-based evaluation of selected actions in the striatum. © 2011 The Authors. European Journal of Neuroscience © 2011 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  4. Selective neuronal differentiation of neural stem cells induced by nanosecond microplasma agitation.

    Xiong, Z; Zhao, S; Mao, X; Lu, X; He, G; Yang, G; Chen, M; Ishaq, M; Ostrikov, K

    2014-03-01

    An essential step for therapeutic and research applications of stem cells is their ability to differentiate into specific cell types. Neuronal cells are of great interest for medical treatment of neurodegenerative diseases and traumatic injuries of central nervous system (CNS), but efforts to produce these cells have been met with only modest success. In an attempt of finding new approaches, atmospheric-pressure room-temperature microplasma jets (MPJs) are shown to effectively direct in vitro differentiation of neural stem cells (NSCs) predominantly into neuronal lineage. Murine neural stem cells (C17.2-NSCs) treated with MPJs exhibit rapid proliferation and differentiation with longer neurites and cell bodies eventually forming neuronal networks. MPJs regulate ~75% of NSCs to differentiate into neurons, which is a higher efficiency compared to common protein- and growth factors-based differentiation. NSCs exposure to quantized and transient (~150 ns) micro-plasma bullets up-regulates expression of different cell lineage markers as β-Tubulin III (for neurons) and O4 (for oligodendrocytes), while the expression of GFAP (for astrocytes) remains unchanged, as evidenced by quantitative PCR, immunofluorescence microscopy and Western Blot assay. It is shown that the plasma-increased nitric oxide (NO) production is a factor in the fate choice and differentiation of NSCs followed by axonal growth. The differentiated NSC cells matured and produced mostly cholinergic and motor neuronal progeny. It is also demonstrated that exposure of primary rat NSCs to the microplasma leads to quite similar differentiation effects. This suggests that the observed effect may potentially be generic and applicable to other types of neural progenitor cells. The application of this new in vitro strategy to selectively differentiate NSCs into neurons represents a step towards reproducible and efficient production of the desired NSC derivatives. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  5. Selective neuronal differentiation of neural stem cells induced by nanosecond microplasma agitation

    Z. Xiong

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available An essential step for therapeutic and research applications of stem cells is their ability to differentiate into specific cell types. Neuronal cells are of great interest for medical treatment of neurodegenerative diseases and traumatic injuries of central nervous system (CNS, but efforts to produce these cells have been met with only modest success. In an attempt of finding new approaches, atmospheric-pressure room-temperature microplasma jets (MPJs are shown to effectively direct in vitro differentiation of neural stem cells (NSCs predominantly into neuronal lineage. Murine neural stem cells (C17.2-NSCs treated with MPJs exhibit rapid proliferation and differentiation with longer neurites and cell bodies eventually forming neuronal networks. MPJs regulate ~75% of NSCs to differentiate into neurons, which is a higher efficiency compared to common protein- and growth factors-based differentiation. NSCs exposure to quantized and transient (~150 ns micro-plasma bullets up-regulates expression of different cell lineage markers as β-Tubulin III (for neurons and O4 (for oligodendrocytes, while the expression of GFAP (for astrocytes remains unchanged, as evidenced by quantitative PCR, immunofluorescence microscopy and Western Blot assay. It is shown that the plasma-increased nitric oxide (NO production is a factor in the fate choice and differentiation of NSCs followed by axonal growth. The differentiated NSC cells matured and produced mostly cholinergic and motor neuronal progeny. It is also demonstrated that exposure of primary rat NSCs to the microplasma leads to quite similar differentiation effects. This suggests that the observed effect may potentially be generic and applicable to other types of neural progenitor cells. The application of this new in vitro strategy to selectively differentiate NSCs into neurons represents a step towards reproducible and efficient production of the desired NSC derivatives.

  6. Direction selectivity in the larval zebrafish tectum is mediated by asymmetric inhibition

    Abhinav eGrama

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available The extraction of the direction of motion is an important computation performed by many sensory systems and in particular, the mechanism by which direction selective ganglion cells (DS-RGCs in the retina acquire their selective properties, has been studied extensively. However, whether DS-RGCs simply relay this information to downstream areas or whether additional and potentially de-novo processing occurs in these recipient structures is a matter of great interest. Neurons in the larval zebrafish tectum, the largest retino-recipent area in this animal, show direction selective responses to moving visual stimuli but how these properties are acquired is still unknown. In order to study this, we first used two-photon calcium imaging to classify the population responses of tectal cells to bars moving at different speeds and in different directions. Subsequently, we performed in-vivo whole cell electrophysiology on these direction selective tectal neurons and we found that their inhibitory inputs were strongly biased towards the null direction of motion, whereas the excitatory inputs showed little selectivity. In addition, we found that excitatory currents evoked by a stimulus moving in the preferred direction occurred before the inhibitory currents whereas a stimulus moving in the null direction evoked currents in the reverse temporal order. The membrane potential modulations resulting from these currents were enhanced by the spike generation mechanism to generate amplified direction selectivity in the spike output. Thus our results implicate a local inhibitory circuit in generating direction selectivity in tectal neurons.

  7. Direct neuronal glucose uptake Heralds activity-dependent increases in cerebral metabolism

    Lundgaard, Iben; Li, Baoman; Xie, Lulu

    2015-01-01

    Metabolically, the brain is a highly active organ that relies almost exclusively on glucose as its energy source. According to the astrocyte-to-neuron lactate shuttle hypothesis, glucose is taken up by astrocytes and converted to lactate, which is then oxidized by neurons. Here we show, using two......-photon imaging of a near-infrared 2-deoxyglucose analogue (2DG-IR), that glucose is taken up preferentially by neurons in awake behaving mice. Anaesthesia suppressed neuronal 2DG-IR uptake and sensory stimulation was associated with a sharp increase in neuronal, but not astrocytic, 2DG-IR uptake. Moreover......, hexokinase, which catalyses the first enzymatic steps in glycolysis, was highly enriched in neurons compared with astrocytes, in mouse as well as in human cortex. These observations suggest that brain activity and neuronal glucose metabolism are directly linked, and identify the neuron as the principal locus...

  8. Direct neuronal glucose uptake heralds activity-dependent increases in cerebral metabolism.

    Lundgaard, Iben; Li, Baoman; Xie, Lulu; Kang, Hongyi; Sanggaard, Simon; Haswell, John D R; Sun, Wei; Goldman, Siri; Blekot, Solomiya; Nielsen, Michael; Takano, Takahiro; Deane, Rashid; Nedergaard, Maiken

    2015-04-23

    Metabolically, the brain is a highly active organ that relies almost exclusively on glucose as its energy source. According to the astrocyte-to-neuron lactate shuttle hypothesis, glucose is taken up by astrocytes and converted to lactate, which is then oxidized by neurons. Here we show, using two-photon imaging of a near-infrared 2-deoxyglucose analogue (2DG-IR), that glucose is taken up preferentially by neurons in awake behaving mice. Anaesthesia suppressed neuronal 2DG-IR uptake and sensory stimulation was associated with a sharp increase in neuronal, but not astrocytic, 2DG-IR uptake. Moreover, hexokinase, which catalyses the first enzymatic steps in glycolysis, was highly enriched in neurons compared with astrocytes, in mouse as well as in human cortex. These observations suggest that brain activity and neuronal glucose metabolism are directly linked, and identify the neuron as the principal locus of glucose uptake as visualized by functional brain imaging.

  9. Direct neuronal glucose uptake heralds activity-dependent increases in cerebral metabolism

    Lundgaard, Iben; Li, Baoman; Xie, Lulu; Kang, Hongyi; Sanggaard, Simon; Haswell, John Douglas R; Sun, Wei; Goldman, Siri; Blekot, Solomiya; Nielsen, Michael; Takano, Takahiro; Deane, Rashid; Nedergaard, Maiken

    2015-01-01

    Metabolically, the brain is a highly active organ that relies almost exclusively on glucose as its energy source. According to the astrocyte-to-neuron lactate shuttle hypothesis, glucose is taken up by astrocytes and converted to lactate, which is then oxidized by neurons. Here we show, using 2-photon imaging of a near-infrared 2-deoxyglucose analogue (2DG-IR), that glucose is taken up preferentially by neurons in awake behaving mice. Anesthesia suppressed neuronal 2DG-IR uptake and sensory stimulation was associated with a sharp increase in neuronal, but not astrocytic, 2DG-IR uptake. Moreover, hexokinase, which catalyze the first enzymatic steps in glycolysis, was highly enriched in neurons compared with astrocytes, in mouse as well as in human cortex. These observations suggest that brain activity and neuronal glucose metabolism are directly linked, and identifies the neuron as the principal locus of glucose uptake as visualized by functional brain imaging. PMID:25904018

  10. Drug-driven AMPA receptor redistribution mimicked by selective dopamine neuron stimulation.

    Matthew T C Brown

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Addictive drugs have in common that they cause surges in dopamine (DA concentration in the mesolimbic reward system and elicit synaptic plasticity in DA neurons of the ventral tegmental area (VTA. Cocaine for example drives insertion of GluA2-lacking AMPA receptors (AMPARs at glutamatergic synapes in DA neurons. However it remains elusive which molecular target of cocaine drives such AMPAR redistribution and whether other addictive drugs (morphine and nicotine cause similar changes through their effects on the mesolimbic DA system.We used in vitro electrophysiological techniques in wild-type and transgenic mice to observe the modulation of excitatory inputs onto DA neurons by addictive drugs. To observe AMPAR redistribution, post-embedding immunohistochemistry for GluA2 AMPAR subunit was combined with electron microscopy. We also used a double-floxed AAV virus expressing channelrhodopsin together with a DAT Cre mouse line to selectively express ChR2 in VTA DA neurons. We find that in mice where the effect of cocaine on the dopamine transporter (DAT is specifically blocked, AMPAR redistribution was absent following administration of the drug. Furthermore, addictive drugs known to increase dopamine levels cause a similar AMPAR redistribution. Finally, activating DA VTA neurons optogenetically is sufficient to drive insertion of GluA2-lacking AMPARs, mimicking the changes observed after a single injection of morphine, nicotine or cocaine.We propose the mesolimbic dopamine system as a point of convergence at which addictive drugs can alter neural circuits. We also show that direct activation of DA neurons is sufficient to drive AMPAR redistribution, which may be a mechanism associated with early steps of non-substance related addictions.

  11. Orientation selectivity in inhibition-dominated networks of spiking neurons: effect of single neuron properties and network dynamics.

    Sadeh, Sadra; Rotter, Stefan

    2015-01-01

    The neuronal mechanisms underlying the emergence of orientation selectivity in the primary visual cortex of mammals are still elusive. In rodents, visual neurons show highly selective responses to oriented stimuli, but neighboring neurons do not necessarily have similar preferences. Instead of a smooth map, one observes a salt-and-pepper organization of orientation selectivity. Modeling studies have recently confirmed that balanced random networks are indeed capable of amplifying weakly tuned inputs and generating highly selective output responses, even in absence of feature-selective recurrent connectivity. Here we seek to elucidate the neuronal mechanisms underlying this phenomenon by resorting to networks of integrate-and-fire neurons, which are amenable to analytic treatment. Specifically, in networks of perfect integrate-and-fire neurons, we observe that highly selective and contrast invariant output responses emerge, very similar to networks of leaky integrate-and-fire neurons. We then demonstrate that a theory based on mean firing rates and the detailed network topology predicts the output responses, and explains the mechanisms underlying the suppression of the common-mode, amplification of modulation, and contrast invariance. Increasing inhibition dominance in our networks makes the rectifying nonlinearity more prominent, which in turn adds some distortions to the otherwise essentially linear prediction. An extension of the linear theory can account for all the distortions, enabling us to compute the exact shape of every individual tuning curve in our networks. We show that this simple form of nonlinearity adds two important properties to orientation selectivity in the network, namely sharpening of tuning curves and extra suppression of the modulation. The theory can be further extended to account for the nonlinearity of the leaky model by replacing the rectifier by the appropriate smooth input-output transfer function. These results are robust and do not

  12. Orientation selectivity in inhibition-dominated networks of spiking neurons: effect of single neuron properties and network dynamics.

    Sadra Sadeh

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The neuronal mechanisms underlying the emergence of orientation selectivity in the primary visual cortex of mammals are still elusive. In rodents, visual neurons show highly selective responses to oriented stimuli, but neighboring neurons do not necessarily have similar preferences. Instead of a smooth map, one observes a salt-and-pepper organization of orientation selectivity. Modeling studies have recently confirmed that balanced random networks are indeed capable of amplifying weakly tuned inputs and generating highly selective output responses, even in absence of feature-selective recurrent connectivity. Here we seek to elucidate the neuronal mechanisms underlying this phenomenon by resorting to networks of integrate-and-fire neurons, which are amenable to analytic treatment. Specifically, in networks of perfect integrate-and-fire neurons, we observe that highly selective and contrast invariant output responses emerge, very similar to networks of leaky integrate-and-fire neurons. We then demonstrate that a theory based on mean firing rates and the detailed network topology predicts the output responses, and explains the mechanisms underlying the suppression of the common-mode, amplification of modulation, and contrast invariance. Increasing inhibition dominance in our networks makes the rectifying nonlinearity more prominent, which in turn adds some distortions to the otherwise essentially linear prediction. An extension of the linear theory can account for all the distortions, enabling us to compute the exact shape of every individual tuning curve in our networks. We show that this simple form of nonlinearity adds two important properties to orientation selectivity in the network, namely sharpening of tuning curves and extra suppression of the modulation. The theory can be further extended to account for the nonlinearity of the leaky model by replacing the rectifier by the appropriate smooth input-output transfer function. These results are

  13. Optimal control of directional deep brain stimulation in the parkinsonian neuronal network

    Fan, Denggui; Wang, Zhihui; Wang, Qingyun

    2016-07-01

    The effect of conventional deep brain stimulation (DBS) on debilitating symptoms of Parkinson's disease can be limited because it can only yield the spherical field. And, some side effects are clearly induced with influencing their adjacent ganglia. Recent experimental evidence for patients with Parkinson's disease has shown that a novel DBS electrode with 32 independent stimulation source contacts can effectively optimize the clinical therapy by enlarging the therapeutic windows, when it is applied on the subthalamic nucleus (STN). This is due to the selective activation in clusters of various stimulation contacts which can be steered directionally and accurately on the targeted regions of interest. In addition, because of the serious damage to the neural tissues, the charge-unbalanced stimulation is not typically indicated and the real DBS utilizes charge-balanced bi-phasic (CBBP) pulses. Inspired by this, we computationally investigate the optimal control of directional CBBP-DBS from the proposed parkinsonian neuronal network of basal ganglia-thalamocortical circuit. By appropriately tuning stimulation for different neuronal populations, it can be found that directional steering CBBP-DBS paradigms are superior to the spherical case in improving parkinsonian dynamical properties including the synchronization of neuronal populations and the reliability of thalamus relaying the information from cortex, which is in a good agreement with the physiological experiments. Furthermore, it can be found that directional steering stimulations can increase the optimal stimulation intensity of desynchronization by more than 1 mA compared to the spherical case. This is consistent with the experimental result with showing that there exists at least one steering direction that can allow increasing the threshold of side effects by 1 mA. In addition, we also simulate the local field potential (LFP) and dominant frequency (DF) of the STN neuronal population induced by the activation

  14. On the directional selectivity of tunneling experiments

    Beuermann, G.; Goettingen Univ.

    1981-01-01

    Using realistic parameters in a simplified model the directional selectivity of tunneling experiments is discussed. Although perfect surfaces and barriers are assumed, quasiparticles coming from a wide solid angle may contribute essentially to the tunnel current. This must be taken into consideration in the case of gap anisotropy. (orig.)

  15. Evolution of genetic architecture under directional selection.

    Hansen, Thomas F; Alvarez-Castro, José M; Carter, Ashley J R; Hermisson, Joachim; Wagner, Günter P

    2006-08-01

    We investigate the multilinear epistatic model under mutation-limited directional selection. We confirm previous results that only directional epistasis, in which genes on average reinforce or diminish each other's effects, contribute to the initial evolution of mutational effects. Thus, either canalization or decanalization can occur under directional selection, depending on whether positive or negative epistasis is prevalent. We then focus on the evolution of the epistatic coefficients themselves. In the absence of higher-order epistasis, positive pairwise epistasis will tend to weaken relative to additive effects, while negative pairwise epistasis will tend to become strengthened. Positive third-order epistasis will counteract these effects, while negative third-order epistasis will reinforce them. More generally, gene interactions of all orders have an inherent tendency for negative changes under directional selection, which can only be modified by higher-order directional epistasis. We identify three types of nonadditive quasi-equilibrium architectures that, although not strictly stable, can be maintained for an extended time: (1) nondirectional epistatic architectures; (2) canalized architectures with strong epistasis; and (3) near-additive architectures in which additive effects keep increasing relative to epistasis.

  16. Directed evolution: selecting today's biocatalysts : selecting today's biocatalysts

    Otten, Linda; Quax, Wim

    2005-01-01

    Directed evolution has become a full-grown tool in molecular biology nowadays. The methods that are involved in creating a mutant library are extensive and can be divided into several categories according to their basic ideas. Furthermore, both screening and selection can be used to target the

  17. Sleep Dependent Synaptic Down-Selection (II: Single Neuron Level Benefits for Matching, Selectivity, and Specificity

    Atif eHashmi

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available In a companion paper (Nere et al., this volume, we used computer simulations to show that a strategy of activity-dependent, on-line net synaptic potentiation during wake, followed by off-line synaptic depression during sleep, can provide a parsimonious account for several memory benefits of sleep at the systems level, including the consolidation of procedural and declarative memories, gist extraction, and integration of new with old memories. In this paper, we consider the theoretical benefits of this two-step process at the single neuron level and employ the theoretical notion of Matching between brain and environment to measure how this process increases the ability of the neuron to capture regularities in the environment and model them internally. We show that down-selection during sleep is beneficial for increasing or restoring Matching after learning, after integrating new with old memories, and after forgetting irrelevant material. By contrast, alternative schemes, such as additional potentiation in wake, potentiation in sleep, or synaptic renormalization in wake, decrease Matching. We also argue that, by selecting appropriate loops through the brain that tie feedforward synapses with feedback ones in the same dendritic domain, different subsets of neurons can learn to specialize for different contingencies and form sequences of nested perception-action loops. By potentiating such loops when interacting with the environment in wake, and depressing them when disconnected from the environment in sleep, neurons can learn to match the long-term statistical structure of the environment while avoiding spurious modes of functioning and catastrophic interference. Finally, such a two-step process has the additional benefit of desaturating the neuron's ability to learn and of maintaining cellular homeostasis. Thus, sleep-dependent synaptic renormalization offers a parsimonious account for both cellular and systems-level effects of sleep on learning

  18. Direction selective structural-acoustic coupled radiator

    Seo, Hee-Seon; Kim, Yang-Hann

    2005-04-01

    This paper presents a method of designing a structural-acoustic coupled radiator that can emit sound in the desired direction. The structural-acoustic coupled system is consisted of acoustic spaces and wall. The wall composes two plates and an opening, and the wall separates one space that is highly reverberant and the other that is unbounded without any reflection. An equation is developed that predicts energy distribution and energy flow in the two spaces separated by the wall, and its computational examples are presented including near field acoustic characteristics. To design the directional coupled radiator, Pareto optimization method is adapted. An objective is selected to maximize radiation power on a main axis and minimize a side lobe level and a subjective is selected direction of the main axis and dimensions of the walls geometry. Pressure and intensity distribution of the designed radiator is also presented.

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

    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

  20. Direct reprogramming of somatic cells into neural stem cells or neurons for neurological disorders.

    Hou, Shaoping; Lu, Paul

    2016-01-01

    Direct reprogramming of somatic cells into neurons or neural stem cells is one of the most important frontier fields in current neuroscience research. Without undergoing the pluripotency stage, induced neurons or induced neural stem cells are a safer and timelier manner resource in comparison to those derived from induced pluripotent stem cells. In this prospective, we review the recent advances in generation of induced neurons and induced neural stem cells in vitro and in vivo and their potential treatments of neurological disorders.

  1. A Neuronal Network Model for Pitch Selectivity and Representation

    Huang, Chengcheng; Rinzel, John

    2016-01-01

    Pitch is a perceptual correlate of periodicity. Sounds with distinct spectra can elicit the same pitch. Despite the importance of pitch perception, understanding the cellular mechanism of pitch perception is still a major challenge and a mechanistic model of pitch is lacking. A multi-stage neuronal network model is developed for pitch frequency estimation using biophysically-based, high-resolution coincidence detector neurons. The neuronal units respond only to highly coincident input among c...

  2. Visual Orientation and Directional Selectivity through Thalamic Synchrony

    Stanley, Garrett B.; Jin, Jianzhong; Wang, Yushi; Desbordes, Gaëlle; Wang, Qi; Black, Michael J.; Alonso, Jose-Manuel

    2012-01-01

    Thalamic neurons respond to visual scenes by generating synchronous spike trains on the timescale of 10 – 20 ms that are very effective at driving cortical targets. Here we demonstrate that this synchronous activity contains unexpectedly rich information about fundamental properties of visual stimuli. We report that the occurrence of synchronous firing of cat thalamic cells with highly overlapping receptive fields is strongly sensitive to the orientation and the direction of motion of the visual stimulus. We show that this stimulus selectivity is robust, remaining relatively unchanged under different contrasts and temporal frequencies (stimulus velocities). A computational analysis based on an integrate-and-fire model of the direct thalamic input to a layer 4 cortical cell reveals a strong correlation between the degree of thalamic synchrony and the nonlinear relationship between cortical membrane potential and the resultant firing rate. Together, these findings suggest a novel population code in the synchronous firing of neurons in the early visual pathway that could serve as the substrate for establishing cortical representations of the visual scene. PMID:22745507

  3. Distribution of orientation selectivity in recurrent networks of spiking neurons with different random topologies.

    Sadeh, Sadra; Rotter, Stefan

    2014-01-01

    Neurons in the primary visual cortex are more or less selective for the orientation of a light bar used for stimulation. A broad distribution of individual grades of orientation selectivity has in fact been reported in all species. A possible reason for emergence of broad distributions is the recurrent network within which the stimulus is being processed. Here we compute the distribution of orientation selectivity in randomly connected model networks that are equipped with different spatial patterns of connectivity. We show that, for a wide variety of connectivity patterns, a linear theory based on firing rates accurately approximates the outcome of direct numerical simulations of networks of spiking neurons. Distance dependent connectivity in networks with a more biologically realistic structure does not compromise our linear analysis, as long as the linearized dynamics, and hence the uniform asynchronous irregular activity state, remain stable. We conclude that linear mechanisms of stimulus processing are indeed responsible for the emergence of orientation selectivity and its distribution in recurrent networks with functionally heterogeneous synaptic connectivity.

  4. Direct Signaling from Astrocytes to Neurons in Cultures of Mammalian Brain Cells

    Nedergaard, Maiken

    1994-03-01

    Although astrocytes have been considered to be supportive, rather than transmissive, in the adult nervous system, recent studies have challenged this assumption by demonstrating that astrocytes possess functional neurotransmitter receptors. Astrocytes are now shown to directly modulate the free cytosolic calcium, and hence transmission characteristics, of neighboring neurons. When a focal electric field potential was applied to single astrocytes in mixed cultures of rat forebrain astrocytes and neurons, a prompt elevation of calcium occurred in the target cell. This in turn triggered a wave of calcium increase, which propagated from astrocyte to astrocyte. Neurons resting on these astrocytes responded with large increases in their concentration of cytosolic calcium. The gap junction blocker octanol attenuated the neuronal response, which suggests that the astrocytic-neuronal signaling is mediated through intercellular connections rather than synaptically. This neuronal response to local astrocytic stimulation may mediate local intercellular communication within the brain.

  5. Aβ42 oligomers selectively disrupt neuronal calcium release.

    Lazzari, Cristian; Kipanyula, Maulilio J; Agostini, Mario; Pozzan, Tullio; Fasolato, Cristina

    2015-02-01

    Accumulation of amyloid-β (Aβ) peptides correlates with aging and progression of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Aβ peptides, which cause early synaptic dysfunctions, spine loss, and memory deficits, also disturb intracellular Ca(2+) homeostasis. By cytosolic and endoplasmic reticulum Ca(2+) measurements, we here define the short-term effects of synthetic Aβ42 on neuronal Ca(2+) dynamics. When applied acutely at submicromolar concentration, as either oligomers or monomers, Aβ42 did not cause Ca(2+) release or Ca(2+) influx. Similarly, 1-hour treatment with Aβ42 modified neither the resting cytosolic Ca(2+) level nor the long-lasting Ca(2+) influx caused by KCl-induced depolarization. In contrast, Aβ42 oligomers, but not monomers, significantly altered Ca(2+) release from stores with opposite effects on inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate (IP3)- and caffeine-induced Ca(2+) mobilization without alteration of the total store Ca(2+) content. Ca(2+) dysregulation by Aβ42 oligomers involves metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 and requires network activity and the intact exo-endocytotic machinery, being prevented by tetrodotoxin and tetanus toxin. These findings support the idea that Ca(2+) store dysfunction is directly involved in Aβ42 neurotoxicity and represents a potential therapeutic target in AD-like dementia. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Neurovascular coupling protects neurons against hypoxic injury via inhibition of potassium currents by generation of nitric oxide in direct neuron and endothelium cocultures.

    Wu, Kun-Wei; Kou, Zeng-Wei; Mo, Jia-Lin; Deng, Xu-Xu; Sun, Feng-Yan

    2016-10-15

    This study examined the effect of neuron-endothelial coupling on the survival of neurons after ischemia and the possible mechanism underlying that effect. Whole-cell patch-clamp experiments were performed on cortical neurons cultured alone or directly cocultured with brain microvascular endothelial cells (BMEC). Propidium iodide (PI) and NeuN staining were performed to examine neuronal death following oxygen and glucose deprivation (OGD). We found that the neuronal transient outward potassium currents (I A ) decreased in the coculture system, whereas the outward delayed-rectifier potassium currents (I K ) did not. Sodium nitroprusside, a NO donor, enhanced BMEC-induced I A inhibition and nitro-l-arginine methylester, a NOS inhibitor, partially prevented this inhibition. Moreover, the neurons directly cocultured with BMEC showed more resistance to OGD-induced injury compared with the neurons cultured alone, and that neuroprotective effect was abolished by treatment with NS5806, an activator of the I A . These results indicate that vascular endothelial cells assist neurons to prevent hypoxic injury via inhibiting neuronal I A by production of NO in the direct neuron-BMEC coculture system. These results further provide direct evidence of functional coupling between neurons and vascular endothelial cells. This study clearly demonstrates that vascular endothelial cells play beneficial roles in the pathophysiological processes of neurons after hypoxic injury, suggesting that the improvement of neurovascular coupling or functional remodeling may become an important therapeutic target for preventing brain injury. Copyright © 2016 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Complex Behavior in a Selective Aging Neuron Model Based on Small World Networks

    Zhang Guiqing; Chen Tianlun

    2008-01-01

    Complex behavior in a selective aging simple neuron model based on small world networks is investigated. The basic elements of the model are endowed with the main features of a neuron function. The structure of the selective aging neuron model is discussed. We also give some properties of the new network and find that the neuron model displays a power-law behavior. If the brain network is small world-like network, the mean avalanche size is almost the same unless the aging parameter is big enough.

  8. Interface Pattern Selection in Directional Solidification

    Trivedi, Rohit; Tewari, Surendra N.

    2001-01-01

    The central focus of this research is to establish key scientific concepts that govern the selection of cellular and dendritic patterns during the directional solidification of alloys. Ground-based studies have established that the conditions under which cellular and dendritic microstructures form are precisely where convection effects are dominant in bulk samples. Thus, experimental data can not be obtained terrestrially under pure diffusive regime. Furthermore, reliable theoretical models are not yet possible which can quantitatively incorporate fluid flow in the pattern selection criterion. Consequently, microgravity experiments on cellular and dendritic growth are designed to obtain benchmark data under diffusive growth conditions that can be quantitatively analyzed and compared with the rigorous theoretical model to establish the fundamental principles that govern the selection of specific microstructure and its length scales. In the cellular structure, different cells in an array are strongly coupled so that the cellular pattern evolution is controlled by complex interactions between thermal diffusion, solute diffusion and interface effects. These interactions give infinity of solutions, and the system selects only a narrow band of solutions. The aim of this investigation is to obtain benchmark data and develop a rigorous theoretical model that will allow us to quantitatively establish the physics of this selection process.

  9. Direct Lineage Reprogramming Reveals Disease-Specific Phenotypes of Motor Neurons from Human ALS Patients

    Meng-Lu Liu

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Subtype-specific neurons obtained from adult humans will be critical to modeling neurodegenerative diseases, such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS. Here, we show that adult human skin fibroblasts can be directly and efficiently converted into highly pure motor neurons without passing through an induced pluripotent stem cell stage. These adult human induced motor neurons (hiMNs exhibit the cytological and electrophysiological features of spinal motor neurons and form functional neuromuscular junctions (NMJs with skeletal muscles. Importantly, hiMNs converted from ALS patient fibroblasts show disease-specific degeneration manifested through poor survival, soma shrinkage, hypoactivity, and an inability to form NMJs. A chemical screen revealed that the degenerative features of ALS hiMNs can be remarkably rescued by the small molecule kenpaullone. Taken together, our results define a direct and efficient strategy to obtain disease-relevant neuronal subtypes from adult human patients and reveal their promising value in disease modeling and drug identification.

  10. Bone conducted vibration selectively activates irregular primary otolithic vestibular neurons in the guinea pig.

    Curthoys, Ian S; Kim, Juno; McPhedran, Samara K; Camp, Aaron J

    2006-11-01

    The main objective of this study was to determine whether bone-conducted vibration (BCV) is equally effective in activating both semicircular canal and otolith afferents in the guinea pig or whether there is preferential activation of one of these classes of vestibular afferents. To answer this question a large number (346) of single primary vestibular neurons were recorded extracellularly in anesthetized guinea pigs and were identified by their location in the vestibular nerve and classed as regular or irregular on the basis of the variability of their spontaneous discharge. If a neuron responded to angular acceleration it was classed as a semicircular canal neuron, if it responded to maintained roll or pitch tilts it was classified as an otolith neuron. Each neuron was then tested by BCV stimuli-either clicks, continuous pure tones (200-1,500 Hz) or short tone bursts (500 Hz lasting 7 ms)-delivered by a B-71 clinical bone-conduction oscillator cemented to the guinea pig's skull. All stimulus intensities were referred to that animal's own auditory brainstem response (ABR) threshold to BCV clicks, and the maximum intensity used was within the animal's physiological range and was usually around 70 dB above BCV threshold. In addition two sensitive single axis linear accelerometers cemented to the skull gave absolute values of the stimulus acceleration in the rostro-caudal direction. The criterion for a neuron being classed as activated was an audible, stimulus-locked increase in firing rate (a 10% change was easily detectable) in response to the BCV stimulus. At the stimulus levels used in this study, semicircular canal neurons, both regular and irregular, were insensitive to BCV stimuli and very few responded: only nine of 189 semicircular canal neurons tested (4.7%) showed a detectable increase in firing in response to BCV stimuli up to the maximum 2 V peak-to-peak level we delivered to the B-71 oscillator (which produced a peak-to-peak skull acceleration of around

  11. Neurons in the human amygdala selective for perceived emotion

    Wang, Shuo; Tudusciuc, Oana; Mamelak, Adam N.; Ross, Ian B.; Adolphs, Ralph; Rutishauser, Ueli

    2014-01-01

    The human amygdala plays a key role in recognizing facial emotions and neurons in the monkey and human amygdala respond to the emotional expression of faces. However, it remains unknown whether these responses are driven primarily by properties of the stimulus or by the perceptual judgments of the perceiver. We investigated these questions by recording from over 200 single neurons in the amygdalae of 7 neurosurgical patients with implanted depth electrodes. We presented degraded fear and happy faces and asked subjects to discriminate their emotion by button press. During trials where subjects responded correctly, we found neurons that distinguished fear vs. happy emotions as expressed by the displayed faces. During incorrect trials, these neurons indicated the patients’ subjective judgment. Additional analysis revealed that, on average, all neuronal responses were modulated most by increases or decreases in response to happy faces, and driven predominantly by judgments about the eye region of the face stimuli. Following the same analyses, we showed that hippocampal neurons, unlike amygdala neurons, only encoded emotions but not subjective judgment. Our results suggest that the amygdala specifically encodes the subjective judgment of emotional faces, but that it plays less of a role in simply encoding aspects of the image array. The conscious percept of the emotion shown in a face may thus arise from interactions between the amygdala and its connections within a distributed cortical network, a scheme also consistent with the long response latencies observed in human amygdala recordings. PMID:24982200

  12. Network and neuronal membrane properties in hybrid networks reciprocally regulate selectivity to rapid thalamocortical inputs.

    Pesavento, Michael J; Pinto, David J

    2012-11-01

    Rapidly changing environments require rapid processing from sensory inputs. Varying deflection velocities of a rodent's primary facial vibrissa cause varying temporal neuronal activity profiles within the ventral posteromedial thalamic nucleus. Local neuron populations in a single somatosensory layer 4 barrel transform sparsely coded input into a spike count based on the input's temporal profile. We investigate this transformation by creating a barrel-like hybrid network with whole cell recordings of in vitro neurons from a cortical slice preparation, embedding the biological neuron in the simulated network by presenting virtual synaptic conductances via a conductance clamp. Utilizing the hybrid network, we examine the reciprocal network properties (local excitatory and inhibitory synaptic convergence) and neuronal membrane properties (input resistance) by altering the barrel population response to diverse thalamic input. In the presence of local network input, neurons are more selective to thalamic input timing; this arises from strong feedforward inhibition. Strongly inhibitory (damping) network regimes are more selective to timing and less selective to the magnitude of input but require stronger initial input. Input selectivity relies heavily on the different membrane properties of excitatory and inhibitory neurons. When inhibitory and excitatory neurons had identical membrane properties, the sensitivity of in vitro neurons to temporal vs. magnitude features of input was substantially reduced. Increasing the mean leak conductance of the inhibitory cells decreased the network's temporal sensitivity, whereas increasing excitatory leak conductance enhanced magnitude sensitivity. Local network synapses are essential in shaping thalamic input, and differing membrane properties of functional classes reciprocally modulate this effect.

  13. Spinal muscular atrophy: Selective motor neuron loss and global defect in the assembly of ribonucleoproteins.

    Beattie, Christine E; Kolb, Stephen J

    2018-08-15

    Spinal muscular atrophy is caused by deletions or mutations in the SMN1 gene that result in reduced expression of the SMN protein. The SMN protein is an essential molecular chaperone that is required for the biogenesis of multiple ribonucleoprotein (RNP) complexes including spliceosomal small nuclear RNPs (snRNPs). Reductions in SMN expression result in a reduced abundance of snRNPs and to downstream RNA splicing alterations. SMN is also present in axons and dendrites and appears to have important roles in the formation of neuronal mRNA-protein complexes during development or neuronal repair. Thus, SMA is an exemplar, selective motor neuron disorder that is caused by defects in fundamental RNA processing events. A detailed molecular understanding of how motor neurons fail, and why other neurons do not, in SMA will yield important principals about motor neuron maintenance and neuronal specificity in neurodegenerative diseases. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Microelectrode array-induced neuronal alignment directs neurite outgrowth: analysis using a fast Fourier transform (FFT).

    Radotić, Viktorija; Braeken, Dries; Kovačić, Damir

    2017-12-01

    Many studies have shown that the topography of the substrate on which neurons are cultured can promote neuronal adhesion and guide neurite outgrowth in the same direction as the underlying topography. To investigate this effect, isotropic substrate-complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor (CMOS) chips were used as one example of microelectrode arrays (MEAs) for directing neurite growth of spiral ganglion neurons. Neurons were isolated from 5 to 7-day-old rat pups, cultured 1 day in vitro (DIV) and 4 DIV, and then fixed with 4% paraformaldehyde. For analysis of neurite alignment and orientation, fast Fourier transformation (FFT) was used. Results revealed that on the micro-patterned surface of a CMOS chip, neurons orient their neurites along three directional axes at 30, 90, and 150° and that neurites aligned in straight lines between adjacent pillars and mostly followed a single direction while occasionally branching perpendicularly. We conclude that the CMOS substrate guides neurites towards electrodes by means of their structured pillar organization and can produce electrical stimulation of aligned neurons as well as monitoring their neural activities once neurites are in the vicinity of electrodes. These findings are of particular interest for neural tissue engineering with the ultimate goal of developing a new generation of MEA essential for improved electrical stimulation of auditory neurons.

  15. Selective disruption of acetylcholine synthesis in subsets of motor neurons: a new model of late-onset motor neuron disease.

    Lecomte, Marie-José; Bertolus, Chloé; Santamaria, Julie; Bauchet, Anne-Laure; Herbin, Marc; Saurini, Françoise; Misawa, Hidemi; Maisonobe, Thierry; Pradat, Pierre-François; Nosten-Bertrand, Marika; Mallet, Jacques; Berrard, Sylvie

    2014-05-01

    Motor neuron diseases are characterized by the selective chronic dysfunction of a subset of motor neurons and the subsequent impairment of neuromuscular function. To reproduce in the mouse these hallmarks of diseases affecting motor neurons, we generated a mouse line in which ~40% of motor neurons in the spinal cord and the brainstem become unable to sustain neuromuscular transmission. These mice were obtained by conditional knockout of the gene encoding choline acetyltransferase (ChAT), the biosynthetic enzyme for acetylcholine. The mutant mice are viable and spontaneously display abnormal phenotypes that worsen with age including hunched back, reduced lifespan, weight loss, as well as striking deficits in muscle strength and motor function. This slowly progressive neuromuscular dysfunction is accompanied by muscle fiber histopathological features characteristic of neurogenic diseases. Unexpectedly, most changes appeared with a 6-month delay relative to the onset of reduction in ChAT levels, suggesting that compensatory mechanisms preserve muscular function for several months and then are overwhelmed. Deterioration of mouse phenotype after ChAT gene disruption is a specific aging process reminiscent of human pathological situations, particularly among survivors of paralytic poliomyelitis. These mutant mice may represent an invaluable tool to determine the sequence of events that follow the loss of function of a motor neuron subset as the disease progresses, and to evaluate therapeutic strategies. They also offer the opportunity to explore fundamental issues of motor neuron biology. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Substrate-Directed Catalytic Selective Chemical Reactions.

    Sawano, Takahiro; Yamamoto, Hisashi

    2018-05-04

    The development of highly efficient reactions at only the desired position is one of the most important subjects in organic chemistry. Most of the reactions in current organic chemistry are reagent- or catalyst-controlled reactions, and the regio- and stereoselectivity of the reactions are determined by the inherent nature of the reagent or catalyst. In sharp contrast, substrate-directed reaction determines the selectivity of the reactions by the functional group on the substrate and can strictly distinguish sterically and electronically similar multiple reaction sites in the substrate. In this Perspective, three topics of substrate-directed reaction are mainly reviewed: (1) directing group-assisted epoxidation of alkenes, (2) ring-opening reactions of epoxides by various nucleophiles, and (3) catalytic peptide synthesis. Our newly developed synthetic methods with new ligands including hydroxamic acid derived ligands realized not only highly efficient reactions but also pinpointed reactions at the expected position, demonstrating the substrate-directed reaction as a powerful method to achieve the desired regio- and stereoselective functionalization of molecules from different viewpoints of reagent- or catalyst-controlled reactions.

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

    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.

  18. Direct Neuronal Glucose Uptake Is Required for Contextual Fear Acquisition in the Dorsal Hippocampus

    Liang Kong

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The metabolism of glucose is a nearly exclusive source of energy for maintaining neuronal survival, synaptic transmission and information processing in the brain. Two glucose metabolism pathways have been reported, direct neuronal glucose uptake and the astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle (ANLS, which can be involved in these functions simultaneously or separately. Although ANLS in the dorsal hippocampus (DH has been proved to be required for memory consolidation, the specific metabolic pathway involved during memory acquisition remains unclear. The DH and amygdala are two key brain regions for acquisition of contextual fear conditioning (CFC. In 2-NBDG experiments, we observed that 2-NBDG-positive neurons were significantly increased during the acquisition of CFC in the DH. However, in the amygdala and cerebellum, 2-NBDG-positive neurons were not changed during CFC training. Strikingly, microinjection of a glucose transporter (GLUT inhibitor into the DH decreased freezing values during CFC training and 1 h later, while injection of a monocarboxylate transporter (MCT inhibitor into the amygdala also reduced freezing values. Therefore, we demonstrated that direct neuronal glucose uptake was the primary means of energy supply in the DH, while ANLS might supply energy in the amygdala during acquisition. Furthermore, knockdown of GLUT3 by a lentivirus in the DH impaired the acquisition of CFC. Taken together, the results indicated that there were two different glucose metabolism pathways in the DH and amygdala during acquisition of contextual fear memory and that direct neuronal glucose uptake in the DH may be regulated by GLUT3.

  19. An FPGA-based silicon neuronal network with selectable excitability silicon neurons

    Jing eLi

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a digital silicon neuronal network which simulates the nerve system in creatures and has the ability to execute intelligent tasks, such as associative memory. Two essential elements, the mathematical-structure-based digital spiking silicon neuron (DSSN and the transmitter release based silicon synapse, allow the network to show rich dynamic behaviors and are computationally efficient for hardware implementation. We adopt mixed pipeline and parallel structure and shift operations to design a sufficient large and complex network without excessive hardware resource cost. The network with $256$ full-connected neurons is built on a Digilent Atlys board equipped with a Xilinx Spartan-6 LX45 FPGA. Besides, a memory control block and USB control block are designed to accomplish the task of data communication between the network and the host PC. This paper also describes the mechanism of associative memory performed in the silicon neuronal network. The network is capable of retrieving stored patterns if the inputs contain enough information of them. The retrieving probability increases with the similarity between the input and the stored pattern increasing. Synchronization of neurons is observed when the successful stored pattern retrieval occurs.

  20. Fast and direct detection of neuronal activation with diffusion MRI

    Le Bihan, D.; Urayama, S.; Aso, T.; Hanakawa, T.; Fukuyama, H.

    2006-01-01

    Over the last 30 years functional neuroimaging has emerged as a revolutionary path to study the brain and the mind. This has been possible because of significant advances mainly in two imaging modalities, namely Positron Emission Tomograph y (PET) and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). Amazingly, although those two modalities are based on radically different physical approaches (detection of 1 3 radioactivity for the first one and nuclear magnetization for the second), both allo w brain activation images to be obtained through measurements involving water molecules. So far, PET and MRI functional imaging have relied on the same principle that neuronal activation and blood flow are coupled through metabolism: Blood flow increases locally in activated brain regions. In the case of PET one uses H 2 O radioactive water which is produced by using a cyclotron and injected to the subject vasculature. In activated brain regions the increase in blood flow leads to a local increase in the tissue radioactive water content detected and localized by the PE T camera. With MRI the hydrogen nuclei of brain endogenous water molecules are magnetized by a strong external magnetic field. In activated regions the increase in blood flow results in an increase of blood oxygenation which induces a slight perturbation of the magnetization relaxation properties of the water molecules around blood vessels detected by the MRI scanner (so called 'BOLD' effect). I n both approaches water is, thus, merely an indirect means to look at changes in cerebral blood flow which accompany brain activation, and although PET and BOLD f MRI have been extremely successful for the functional neuroimaging community, present well known limitations. While the coupling between neuronal activation, metabolism and blood flow has been verified in most instances including BOLD f MRI, the degree and the mechanism of coupling remains largely debated (Magistratt, Pellerin, Mangia) and may fail in some pathological

  1. Sugar Antennae for Guidance Signals: Syndecans and Glypicans Integrate Directional Cues for Navigating Neurons

    Christa Rhiner

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Attractive and repulsive signals guide migrating nerve cells in all directions when the nervous system starts to form. The neurons extend thin processes, axons, that connect over wide distances with other brain cells to form a complicated neuronal network. One of the most fascinating questions in neuroscience is how the correct wiring of billions of nerve cells in our brain is controlled. Several protein families are known to serve as guidance cues for navigating neurons and axons. Nevertheless, the combinatorial potential of these proteins seems to be insufficient to sculpt the entire neuronal network and the appropriate formation of connections. Recently, heparan sulfate proteoglycans (HSPGs, which are present on the cell surface of neurons and in the extracellular matrix through which neurons and axons migrate, have been found to play a role in regulating cell migration and axon guidance. Intriguingly, the large number of distinct modifications that can be put onto the sugar side chains of these PGs would in principle allow for an enormous diversity of HSPGs, which could help in regulating the vast number of guidance choices taken by individual neurons. In this review, we will focus on the role of the cell surface HSPGs syndecan and glypican and specific HS modifications in promoting neuronal migration, axon guidance, and synapse formation.

  2. Direct effects of endogenous pyrogen on medullary temperature-responsive neurons in rabbits.

    Sakata, Y; Morimoto, A; Takase, Y; Murakami, N

    1981-01-01

    The effect of endogenous pyrogen (E.P.) injected directly into the tissue near the recording site were examined on the activities of the medullary temperature-responsive (TR) neurons in rabbits anesthetized with urethane. Endogenous pyrogen prepared from rabbit's whole blood was administered by a fine glass cannula (100-200 micrometer in diameter) in a fluid volume of 1 to 4 microliter. The cannula was fixed to the manipulator in parallel with a microelectrode and their tips were less than 0.05 mm apart. In rabbits with the intact preoptic/anterior hypothalamic (PO/AH) region, 4 warm-responsive neurons out of 7 were inhibited and 6 cold-responsive neuron out of 7 were excited by the direct administration of the E.P. In rabbits with lesions of the PO/AH, 5 warm-responsive neurons out of 9 were inhibited and 6 cold-responsive neurons out of 8 were facilitated by E.P. Antipyretics administered locally after the E.P. antagonized the pyretic effect, causing a return of the discharge of TR neuron to the control rate within 2.4 +/- 1.2 (mean +/- S.D.) min. The medullary TR neuron itself has the ability to respond to the E.P. and contributes to the development of fever.

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

    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.

  4. Orientation selectivity of synaptic input to neurons in mouse and cat primary visual cortex.

    Tan, Andrew Y Y; Brown, Brandon D; Scholl, Benjamin; Mohanty, Deepankar; Priebe, Nicholas J

    2011-08-24

    Primary visual cortex (V1) is the site at which orientation selectivity emerges in mammals: visual thalamus afferents to V1 respond equally to all stimulus orientations, whereas their target V1 neurons respond selectively to stimulus orientation. The emergence of orientation selectivity in V1 has long served as a model for investigating cortical computation. Recent evidence for orientation selectivity in mouse V1 opens cortical computation to dissection by genetic and imaging tools, but also raises two essential questions: (1) How does orientation selectivity in mouse V1 neurons compare with that in previously described species? (2) What is the synaptic basis for orientation selectivity in mouse V1? A comparison of orientation selectivity in mouse and in cat, where such measures have traditionally been made, reveals that orientation selectivity in mouse V1 is weaker than in cat V1, but that spike threshold plays a similar role in narrowing selectivity between membrane potential and spike rate. To uncover the synaptic basis for orientation selectivity, we made whole-cell recordings in vivo from mouse V1 neurons, comparing neuronal input selectivity-based on membrane potential, synaptic excitation, and synaptic inhibition-to output selectivity based on spiking. We found that a neuron's excitatory and inhibitory inputs are selective for the same stimulus orientations as is its membrane potential response, and that inhibitory selectivity is not broader than excitatory selectivity. Inhibition has different dynamics than excitation, adapting more rapidly. In neurons with temporally modulated responses, the timing of excitation and inhibition was different in mice and cats.

  5. Noradrenaline and dopamine neurons in the reward/effort trade-off: a direct electrophysiological comparison in behaving monkeys.

    Varazzani, Chiara; San-Galli, Aurore; Gilardeau, Sophie; Bouret, Sebastien

    2015-05-20

    Motivation determines multiple aspects of behavior, including action selection and energization of behavior. Several components of the underlying neural systems have been examined closely, but the specific role of the different neuromodulatory systems in motivation remains unclear. Here, we compare directly the activity of dopaminergic neurons from the substantia nigra pars compacta and noradrenergic neurons from the locus coeruleus in monkeys performing a task manipulating the reward/effort trade-off. Consistent with previous reports, dopaminergic neurons encoded the expected reward, but we found that they also anticipated the upcoming effort cost in connection with its negative influence on action selection. Conversely, the firing of noradrenergic neurons increased with both pupil dilation and effort production in relation to the energization of behavior. Therefore, this work underlines the contribution of dopamine to effort-based decision making and uncovers a specific role of noradrenaline in energizing behavior to face challenges. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/357866-12$15.00/0.

  6. Relationships between selective neuronal loss and microglial activation after ischaemic stroke in man.

    Morris, Rhiannon S; Simon Jones, P; Alawneh, Josef A; Hong, Young T; Fryer, Tim D; Aigbirhio, Franklin I; Warburton, Elizabeth A; Baron, Jean-Claude

    2018-05-09

    Modern ischaemic stroke management involves intravenous thrombolysis followed by mechanical thrombectomy, which allows markedly higher rates of recanalization and penumbral salvage than thrombolysis alone. However, <50% of treated patients eventually enjoy independent life. It is therefore important to identify complementary therapeutic targets. In rodent models, the salvaged penumbra is consistently affected by selective neuronal loss, which may hinder recovery by interfering with plastic processes, as well as by microglial activation, which may exacerbate neuronal death. However, whether the salvaged penumbra in man is similarly affected is still unclear. Here we determined whether these two processes affect the non-infarcted penumbra in man and, if so, whether they are inter-related. We prospectively recruited patients with (i) acute middle-cerebral artery stroke; (ii) penumbra present on CT perfusion obtained <4.5 h of stroke onset; and (iii) early neurological recovery as a marker of penumbral salvage. PET with 11C-flumazenil and 11C-PK11195, as well as MRI to map the final infarct, were obtained at predefined follow-up times. The presence of selective neuronal loss and microglial activation was determined voxel-wise within the MRI normal-appearing ipsilateral non-infarcted zone and surviving penumbra masks, and their inter-relationship was assessed both across and within patients. Dilated infarct contours were consistently excluded to control for partial volume effects. Across the 16 recruited patients, there was reduced 11C-flumazenil and increased 11C-PK11195 binding in the whole ipsilateral non-infarcted zone (P = 0.04 and 0.02, respectively). Within the non-infarcted penumbra, 11C-flumazenil was also reduced (P = 0.001), but without clear increase in 11C-PK11195 (P = 0.18). There was no significant correlation between 11C-flumazenil and 11C-PK11195 in either compartment. This mechanistic study provides direct evidence for the presence of both neuronal

  7. Fast and direct detection of neuronal activation with diffusion MRI

    Le Bihan, D. [Service Hospitalier Frederic Joliot (CEA/DSV/DRM), Lab. Anatomical and Functional Neuroimaging, 91 - Orsay (France); Urayama, S.; Aso, T.; Hanakawa, T.; Fukuyama, H. [Kyoto Univ. Graduate School of Medicine, Human Brain Research Center, Kyoto (Japan)

    2006-07-01

    Over the last 30 years functional neuroimaging has emerged as a revolutionary path to study the brain and the mind. This has been possible because of significant advances mainly in two imaging modalities, namely Positron Emission Tomograph y (PET) and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). Amazingly, although those two modalities are based on radically different physical approaches (detection of 1 3 radioactivity for the first one and nuclear magnetization for the second), both allo w brain activation images to be obtained through measurements involving water molecules. So far, PET and MRI functional imaging have relied on the same principle that neuronal activation and blood flow are coupled through metabolism: Blood flow increases locally in activated brain regions. In the case of PET one uses H{sub 2}O radioactive water which is produced by using a cyclotron and injected to the subject vasculature. In activated brain regions the increase in blood flow leads to a local increase in the tissue radioactive water content detected and localized by the PE T camera. With MRI the hydrogen nuclei of brain endogenous water molecules are magnetized by a strong external magnetic field. In activated regions the increase in blood flow results in an increase of blood oxygenation which induces a slight perturbation of the magnetization relaxation properties of the water molecules around blood vessels detected by the MRI scanner (so called 'BOLD' effect). I n both approaches water is, thus, merely an indirect means to look at changes in cerebral blood flow which accompany brain activation, and although PET and BOLD f MRI have been extremely successful for the functional neuroimaging community, present well known limitations. While the coupling between neuronal activation, metabolism and blood flow has been verified in most instances including BOLD f MRI, the degree and the mechanism of coupling remains largely debated (Magistratt, Pellerin, Mangia) and may fail in some

  8. Properties of Neurons in External Globus Pallidus Can Support Optimal Action Selection

    Bogacz, Rafal; Martin Moraud, Eduardo; Abdi, Azzedine; Magill, Peter J.; Baufreton, Jérôme

    2016-01-01

    The external globus pallidus (GPe) is a key nucleus within basal ganglia circuits that are thought to be involved in action selection. A class of computational models assumes that, during action selection, the basal ganglia compute for all actions available in a given context the probabilities that they should be selected. These models suggest that a network of GPe and subthalamic nucleus (STN) neurons computes the normalization term in Bayes’ equation. In order to perform such computation, the GPe needs to send feedback to the STN equal to a particular function of the activity of STN neurons. However, the complex form of this function makes it unlikely that individual GPe neurons, or even a single GPe cell type, could compute it. Here, we demonstrate how this function could be computed within a network containing two types of GABAergic GPe projection neuron, so-called ‘prototypic’ and ‘arkypallidal’ neurons, that have different response properties in vivo and distinct connections. We compare our model predictions with the experimentally-reported connectivity and input-output functions (f-I curves) of the two populations of GPe neurons. We show that, together, these dichotomous cell types fulfil the requirements necessary to compute the function needed for optimal action selection. We conclude that, by virtue of their distinct response properties and connectivities, a network of arkypallidal and prototypic GPe neurons comprises a neural substrate capable of supporting the computation of the posterior probabilities of actions. PMID:27389780

  9. Local-learning-based neuron selection for grasping gesture prediction in motor brain machine interfaces

    Xu, Kai; Wang, Yiwen; Wang, Yueming; Wang, Fang; Hao, Yaoyao; Zhang, Shaomin; Zhang, Qiaosheng; Chen, Weidong; Zheng, Xiaoxiang

    2013-04-01

    Objective. The high-dimensional neural recordings bring computational challenges to movement decoding in motor brain machine interfaces (mBMI), especially for portable applications. However, not all recorded neural activities relate to the execution of a certain movement task. This paper proposes to use a local-learning-based method to perform neuron selection for the gesture prediction in a reaching and grasping task. Approach. Nonlinear neural activities are decomposed into a set of linear ones in a weighted feature space. A margin is defined to measure the distance between inter-class and intra-class neural patterns. The weights, reflecting the importance of neurons, are obtained by minimizing a margin-based exponential error function. To find the most dominant neurons in the task, 1-norm regularization is introduced to the objective function for sparse weights, where near-zero weights indicate irrelevant neurons. Main results. The signals of only 10 neurons out of 70 selected by the proposed method could achieve over 95% of the full recording's decoding accuracy of gesture predictions, no matter which different decoding methods are used (support vector machine and K-nearest neighbor). The temporal activities of the selected neurons show visually distinguishable patterns associated with various hand states. Compared with other algorithms, the proposed method can better eliminate the irrelevant neurons with near-zero weights and provides the important neuron subset with the best decoding performance in statistics. The weights of important neurons converge usually within 10-20 iterations. In addition, we study the temporal and spatial variation of neuron importance along a period of one and a half months in the same task. A high decoding performance can be maintained by updating the neuron subset. Significance. The proposed algorithm effectively ascertains the neuronal importance without assuming any coding model and provides a high performance with different

  10. Synthesis of Novel Synthetic Vitamin K Analogues Prepared by Introduction of a Heteroatom and a Phenyl Group That Induce Highly Selective Neuronal Differentiation of Neuronal Progenitor Cells.

    Kimura, Kimito; Hirota, Yoshihisa; Kuwahara, Shigefumi; Takeuchi, Atsuko; Tode, Chisato; Wada, Akimori; Osakabe, Naomi; Suhara, Yoshitomo

    2017-03-23

    We synthesized novel vitamin K 2 analogues that incorporated a heteroatom and an aromatic ring in the side chain and evaluated their effect on the selective differentiation of neuronal progenitor cells into neurons in vitro. The results showed that a menaquinone-2 analogue bearing a p-fluoroaniline had the most potent activity, which was more than twice as great as the control. In addition, the neuronal selectivity was more than 3 times greater than the control.

  11. Neuroprotection by selective neuronal deletion of Atg7 in neonatal brain injury

    Xie, Cuicui; Ginet, Vanessa; Sun, Yanyan; Koike, Masato; Zhou, Kai; Li, Tao; Li, Hongfu; Li, Qian; Wang, Xiaoyang; Uchiyama, Yasuo; Truttmann, Anita C.; Kroemer, Guido; Puyal, Julien; Blomgren, Klas; Zhu, Changlian

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Perinatal asphyxia induces neuronal cell death and brain injury, and is often associated with irreversible neurological deficits in children. There is an urgent need to elucidate the neuronal death mechanisms occurring after neonatal hypoxia-ischemia (HI). We here investigated the selective neuronal deletion of the Atg7 (autophagy related 7) gene on neuronal cell death and brain injury in a mouse model of severe neonatal hypoxia-ischemia. Neuronal deletion of Atg7 prevented HI-induced autophagy, resulted in 42% decrease of tissue loss compared to wild-type mice after the insult, and reduced cell death in multiple brain regions, including apoptosis, as shown by decreased caspase-dependent and -independent cell death. Moreover, we investigated the lentiform nucleus of human newborns who died after severe perinatal asphyxia and found increased neuronal autophagy after severe hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy compared to control uninjured brains, as indicated by the numbers of MAP1LC3B/LC3B (microtubule-associated protein 1 light chain 3)-, LAMP1 (lysosomal-associated membrane protein 1)-, and CTSD (cathepsin D)-positive cells. These findings reveal that selective neuronal deletion of Atg7 is strongly protective against neuronal death and overall brain injury occurring after HI and suggest that inhibition of HI-enhanced autophagy should be considered as a potential therapeutic target for the treatment of human newborns developing severe hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy. PMID:26727396

  12. Selectivity of Direct Methanol Fuel Cell Membranes

    Antonino S. Aricò

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Sulfonic acid-functionalized polymer electrolyte membranes alternative to Nafion® were developed. These were hydrocarbon systems, such as blend sulfonated polyetheretherketone (s-PEEK, new generation perfluorosulfonic acid (PFSA systems, and composite zirconium phosphate–PFSA polymers. The membranes varied in terms of composition, equivalent weight, thickness, and filler and were investigated with regard to their methanol permeation characteristics and proton conductivity for application in direct methanol fuel cells. The behavior of the membrane electrode assemblies (MEA was investigated in fuel cell with the aim to individuate a correlation between membrane characteristics and their performance in a direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC. The power density of the DMFC at 60 °C increased according to a square root-like function of the membrane selectivity. This was defined as the reciprocal of the product between area specific resistance and crossover. The power density achieved at 60 °C for the most promising s-PEEK-based membrane-electrode assembly (MEA was higher than the benchmark Nafion® 115-based MEA (77 mW·cm−2 vs. 64 mW·cm−2. This result was due to a lower methanol crossover (47 mA·cm−2 equivalent current density for s-PEEK vs. 120 mA·cm−2 for Nafion® 115 at 60 °C as recorded at OCV with 2 M methanol and a suitable area specific resistance (0.15 Ohm cm2 for s-PEEK vs. 0.22 Ohm cm2 for Nafion® 115.

  13. Selectivity of Direct Methanol Fuel Cell Membranes.

    Aricò, Antonino S; Sebastian, David; Schuster, Michael; Bauer, Bernd; D'Urso, Claudia; Lufrano, Francesco; Baglio, Vincenzo

    2015-11-24

    Sulfonic acid-functionalized polymer electrolyte membranes alternative to Nafion(®) were developed. These were hydrocarbon systems, such as blend sulfonated polyetheretherketone (s-PEEK), new generation perfluorosulfonic acid (PFSA) systems, and composite zirconium phosphate-PFSA polymers. The membranes varied in terms of composition, equivalent weight, thickness, and filler and were investigated with regard to their methanol permeation characteristics and proton conductivity for application in direct methanol fuel cells. The behavior of the membrane electrode assemblies (MEA) was investigated in fuel cell with the aim to individuate a correlation between membrane characteristics and their performance in a direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC). The power density of the DMFC at 60 °C increased according to a square root-like function of the membrane selectivity. This was defined as the reciprocal of the product between area specific resistance and crossover. The power density achieved at 60 °C for the most promising s-PEEK-based membrane-electrode assembly (MEA) was higher than the benchmark Nafion(®) 115-based MEA (77 mW·cm(-2) vs. 64 mW·cm(-2)). This result was due to a lower methanol crossover (47 mA·cm(-2) equivalent current density for s-PEEK vs. 120 mA·cm(-2) for Nafion(®) 115 at 60 °C as recorded at OCV with 2 M methanol) and a suitable area specific resistance (0.15 Ohm cm² for s-PEEK vs. 0.22 Ohm cm² for Nafion(®) 115).

  14. Diversification of C. elegans Motor Neuron Identity via Selective Effector Gene Repression.

    Kerk, Sze Yen; Kratsios, Paschalis; Hart, Michael; Mourao, Romulo; Hobert, Oliver

    2017-01-04

    A common organizational feature of nervous systems is the existence of groups of neurons that share common traits but can be divided into individual subtypes based on anatomical or molecular features. We elucidate the mechanistic basis of neuronal diversification processes in the context of C.elegans ventral cord motor neurons that share common traits that are directly activated by the terminal selector UNC-3. Diversification of motor neurons into different classes, each characterized by unique patterns of effector gene expression, is controlled by distinct combinations of phylogenetically conserved, class-specific transcriptional repressors. These repressors are continuously required in postmitotic neurons to prevent UNC-3, which is active in all neuron classes, from activating class-specific effector genes in specific motor neuron subsets via discrete cis-regulatory elements. The strategy of antagonizing the activity of broadly acting terminal selectors of neuron identity in a subtype-specific fashion may constitute a general principle of neuron subtype diversification. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Direct Thy-1/alphaVbeta3 integrin interaction mediates neuron to astrocyte communication.

    Hermosilla, Tamara; Muñoz, Daniel; Herrera-Molina, Rodrigo; Valdivia, Alejandra; Muñoz, Nicolás; Nham, Sang-Uk; Schneider, Pascal; Burridge, Keith; Quest, Andrew F G; Leyton, Lisette

    2008-06-01

    Thy-1 is an abundant neuronal glycoprotein of poorly defined function. We recently provided evidence indicating that Thy-1 clusters a beta3-containing integrin in astrocytes to induce tyrosine phosphorylation, RhoA activation and the formation of focal adhesions and stress fibers. To date, the alpha subunit partner of beta3 integrin in DI TNC1 astrocytes is unknown. Similarly, the ability of neuronal, membrane-bound Thy-1 to trigger astrocyte signaling via integrin engagement remains speculation. Here, evidence that alphav forms an alphavbeta3 heterodimer in DI TNC1 astrocytes was obtained. In neuron-astrocyte association assays, the presence of either anti-alphav or anti-beta3 integrin antibodies reduced cell-cell interaction demonstrating the requirement of both integrin subunits for this association. Moreover, anti-Thy-1 antibodies blocked stimulation of astrocytes by neurons but not the binding of these two cell types. Thus, neuron-astrocyte association involved binding between molecular components in addition to the Thy-1-integrin; however, the signaling events leading to focal adhesion formation in astrocytes depended exclusively on the latter interaction. Additionally, wild-type (RLD) but not mutated (RLE) Thy-1 was shown to directly interact with alphavbeta3 integrin by Surface Plasmon Resonance analysis. This interaction was promoted by divalent cations and was species-independent. Together, these results demonstrate that the alphavbeta3 integrin heterodimer interacts directly with Thy-1 present on neuronal cells to stimulate astrocytes.

  16. Marinesco-Sjögren syndrome protein SIL1 regulates motor neuron subtype-selective ER stress in ALS

    Filézac de L'Etang, Audrey; Maharjan, Niran; Cordeiro Braña, Marisa; Ruegsegger, Céline; Rehmann, Ruth; Goswami, Anand; Roos, Andreas; Troost, Dirk; Schneider, Bernard L.; Weis, Joachim; Saxena, Smita

    2015-01-01

    Mechanisms underlying motor neuron subtype-selective endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress and associated axonal pathology in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) remain unclear. Here we show that the molecular environment of the ER between motor neuron subtypes is distinct, with characteristic

  17. Electronic bypass of spinal lesions: activation of lower motor neurons directly driven by cortical neural signals.

    Li, Yan; Alam, Monzurul; Guo, Shanshan; Ting, K H; He, Jufang

    2014-07-03

    Lower motor neurons in the spinal cord lose supraspinal inputs after complete spinal cord injury, leading to a loss of volitional control below the injury site. Extensive locomotor training with spinal cord stimulation can restore locomotion function after spinal cord injury in humans and animals. However, this locomotion is non-voluntary, meaning that subjects cannot control stimulation via their natural "intent". A recent study demonstrated an advanced system that triggers a stimulator using forelimb stepping electromyographic patterns to restore quadrupedal walking in rats with spinal cord transection. However, this indirect source of "intent" may mean that other non-stepping forelimb activities may false-trigger the spinal stimulator and thus produce unwanted hindlimb movements. We hypothesized that there are distinguishable neural activities in the primary motor cortex during treadmill walking, even after low-thoracic spinal transection in adult guinea pigs. We developed an electronic spinal bridge, called "Motolink", which detects these neural patterns and triggers a "spinal" stimulator for hindlimb movement. This hardware can be head-mounted or carried in a backpack. Neural data were processed in real-time and transmitted to a computer for analysis by an embedded processor. Off-line neural spike analysis was conducted to calculate and preset the spike threshold for "Motolink" hardware. We identified correlated activities of primary motor cortex neurons during treadmill walking of guinea pigs with spinal cord transection. These neural activities were used to predict the kinematic states of the animals. The appropriate selection of spike threshold value enabled the "Motolink" system to detect the neural "intent" of walking, which triggered electrical stimulation of the spinal cord and induced stepping-like hindlimb movements. We present a direct cortical "intent"-driven electronic spinal bridge to restore hindlimb locomotion after complete spinal cord injury.

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

    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. Choline metabolism as a basis for the selective vulnerability of cholinergic neurons

    Wurtman, R. J.

    1992-01-01

    The unique propensity of cholinergic neurons to use choline for two purposes--ACh and membrane phosphatidylcholine synthesis--may contribute to their selective vulnerability in Alzheimer's disease and other cholinergic neurodegenerative disorders. When physiologically active, the neurons use free choline taken from the 'reservoir' in membrane phosphatidylcholine to synthesize ACh; this can lead to an actual decrease in the quantity of membrane per cell. Alzheimer's disease (but not Down's syndrome, or other neurodegenerative disorders) is associated with characteristic neurochemical lesions involving choline and ethanolamine: brain levels of these compounds are diminished, while those of glycerophosphocholine and glycerophosphoethanolamine (breakdown products of their respective membrane phosphatides) are increased, both in cholinergic and noncholinergic brain regions. Perhaps this metabolic disturbance and the tendency of cholinergic neurons to 'export' choline--in the form of ACh--underlie the selective vulnerability of the neurons. Resulting changes in membrane composition could abnormally expose intramembraneous proteins such as amyloid precursor protein to proteases.

  20. Strength and tempo of directional selection in the wild

    Hoekstra, H. E.; Hoekstra, J. M.; Berrigan, D.; Vignieri, S. N.; Hoang, A.; Hill, C. E.; Beerli, P.; Kingsolver, J. G.

    2001-01-01

    Directional selection is a major force driving adaptation and evolutionary change. However, the distribution, strength, and tempo of phenotypic selection acting on quantitative traits in natural populations remain unclear across different study systems. We reviewed the literature (1984–1997) that reported the strength of directional selection as indexed by standardized linear selection gradients (β). We asked how strong are viability and sexual selection, and whether strength of selection is ...

  1. Intratelencephalic corticostriatal neurons equally excite striatonigral and striatopallidal neurons and their discharge activity is selectively reduced in experimental parkinsonism

    Ballion, B. (B.); Mallet, N. (Nicolas); Bezard, E. (E.); Lanciego, J.L. (José Luis); Gonon, F. (Francois)

    2008-01-01

    Striatonigral and striatopallidal neurons form distinct populations of striatal projection neurons. Their discharge activity is imbalanced after dopaminergic degeneration in Parkinson's disease. Striatal projection neurons receive massive cortical excitatory inputs from bilateral intratelencephalic (IT) neurons projecting to both the ipsilateral and contralateral striatum and from collateral axons of ipsilateral neurons that send their main axon through the pyramidal tract (PT). Previous anat...

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

    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

  3. METHAMPHETAMINE-INDUCED CELL DEATH: SELECTIVE VULNERABILITY IN NEURONAL SUBPOPULATIONS OF THE STRIATUM IN MICE

    ZHU, J. P. Q.; XU, W.; ANGULO, J. A.

    2010-01-01

    Methamphetamine (METH) is an illicit and potent psychostimulant, which acts as an indirect dopamine agonist. In the striatum, METH has been shown to cause long lasting neurotoxic damage to dopaminergic nerve terminals and recently, the degeneration and death of striatal cells. The present study was undertaken to identify the type of striatal neurons that undergo apoptosis after METH. Male mice received a single high dose of METH (30 mg/kg, i.p.) and were killed 24 h later. To demonstrate that METH induces apoptosis in neurons, we combined terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick end labeling (TUNEL) staining with immunohistofluorescence for the neuronal marker neuron-specific nuclear protein (NeuN). Staining for TUNEL and NeuN was colocalized throughout the striatum. METH induces apoptosis in approximately 25% of striatal neurons. Cell counts of TUNEL-positive neurons in the dorsomedial, ventromedial, dorsolateral and ventrolateral quadrants of the striatum did not reveal anatomical preference. The type of striatal neuron undergoing cell death was determined by combining TUNEL with immunohistofluorescence for selective markers of striatal neurons: dopamine- and cAMP-regulated phosphoprotein, of apparent Mr 32,000, parvalbumin, choline acetyltransferase and somatostatin (SST). METH induces apoptosis in approximately 21% of dopamine- and cAMP-regulated phosphoprotein, of apparent Mr 32,000-positive neurons (projection neurons), 45% of GABA-parvalbumin-positive neurons in the dorsal striatum, and 29% of cholinergic neurons in the dorsal–medial striatum. In contrast, the SST-positive interneurons were refractory to METH-induced apoptosis. Finally, the amount of cell loss determined with Nissl staining correlated with the amount of TUNEL staining in the striatum of METH-treated animals. In conclusion, some of the striatal projection neurons and the GABA-parvalbumin and cholinergic interneurons were removed by apoptosis in the aftermath of METH. This

  4. A Population of Indirect Pathway Striatal Projection Neurons Is Selectively Entrained to Parkinsonian Beta Oscillations.

    Sharott, Andrew; Vinciati, Federica; Nakamura, Kouichi C; Magill, Peter J

    2017-10-11

    Classical schemes of basal ganglia organization posit that parkinsonian movement difficulties presenting after striatal dopamine depletion stem from the disproportionate firing rates of spiny projection neurons (SPNs) therein. There remains, however, a pressing need to elucidate striatal SPN firing in the context of the synchronized network oscillations that are abnormally exaggerated in cortical-basal ganglia circuits in parkinsonism. To address this, we recorded unit activities in the dorsal striatum of dopamine-intact and dopamine-depleted rats during two brain states, respectively defined by cortical slow-wave activity (SWA) and activation. Dopamine depletion escalated striatal net output but had contrasting effects on "direct pathway" SPNs (dSPNs) and "indirect pathway" SPNs (iSPNs); their firing rates became imbalanced, and they disparately engaged in network oscillations. Disturbed striatal activity dynamics relating to the slow (∼1 Hz) oscillations prevalent during SWA partly generalized to the exaggerated beta-frequency (15-30 Hz) oscillations arising during cortical activation. In both cases, SPNs exhibited higher incidences of phase-locked firing to ongoing cortical oscillations, and SPN ensembles showed higher levels of rhythmic correlated firing, after dopamine depletion. Importantly, in dopamine-depleted striatum, a widespread population of iSPNs, which often displayed excessive firing rates and aberrant phase-locked firing to cortical beta oscillations, preferentially and excessively synchronized their firing at beta frequencies. Conversely, dSPNs were neither hyperactive nor synchronized to a large extent during cortical activation. These data collectively demonstrate a cell type-selective entrainment of SPN firing to parkinsonian beta oscillations. We conclude that a population of overactive, excessively synchronized iSPNs could orchestrate these pathological rhythms in basal ganglia circuits. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Chronic depletion of dopamine

  5. Selective elimination of intracortically projecting neurons of the rat neocortex by prenatal x-irradiation

    Jensen, K.F.

    1981-01-01

    The development of new racing methods has suggested that there are species differences in the extent of the contribution of the different layers of the neocortex to the callosal projection. The present investigation has utilized prenatal x-irradiation to selectively eliminate the late forming neurons of the supragranular layers of the rat neocortex. The reduction in the neuronal population of the supragranular layers closely parallels the reduction in the corpus callosum. These results indicate that the primary source of neurons of the callosal projection, are the late forming neurons of the supragranular layers. Thus, the current results suggest that low dose prenatal x-irradiation may be used to evaluate important developmental events in the formation of neocortical circuitry

  6. Influence of Selective Edge Removal and Refractory Period in a Self-Organized Critical Neuron Model

    Lin Min; Gang, Zhao; Chen Tianlun

    2009-01-01

    A simple model for a set of integrate-and-fire neurons based on the weighted network is introduced. By considering the neurobiological phenomenon in brain development and the difference of the synaptic strength, we construct weighted networks develop with link additions and followed by selective edge removal. The network exhibits the small-world and scale-free properties with high network efficiency. The model displays an avalanche activity on a power-law distribution. We investigate the effect of selective edge removal and the neuron refractory period on the self-organized criticality of the system. (condensed matter: structural, mechanical, and thermal properties)

  7. The ancestral selection graph under strong directional selection.

    Pokalyuk, Cornelia; Pfaffelhuber, Peter

    2013-08-01

    The ancestral selection graph (ASG) was introduced by  Neuhauser and Krone (1997) in order to study populations of constant size which evolve under selection. Coalescence events, which occur at rate 1 for every pair of lines, lead to joint ancestry. In addition, splitting events in the ASG at rate α, the scaled selection coefficient, produce possible ancestors, such that the real ancestor depends on the ancestral alleles. Here, we use the ASG in the case without mutation in order to study fixation of a beneficial mutant. Using our main tool, a reversibility property of the ASG, we provide a new proof of the fact that a beneficial allele fixes roughly in time (2logα)/α if α is large. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Selective silicate-directed motility in diatoms

    Bondoc, Karen Grace V.; Heuschele, Jan; Gillard, Jeroen

    2016-01-01

    the major sink in the global Si cycle. Dissolved silicic acid (dSi) availability frequently limits diatom productivity and influences species composition of communities. We show that benthic diatoms selectively perceive and behaviourally react to gradients of dSi. Cell speed increases under d...

  9. Biologically Predisposed Learning and Selective Associations in Amygdalar Neurons

    Chung, Ain; Barot, Sabiha K.; Kim, Jeansok J.; Bernstein, Ilene L.

    2011-01-01

    Modern views on learning and memory accept the notion of biological constraints--that the formation of association is not uniform across all stimuli. Yet cellular evidence of the encoding of selective associations is lacking. Here, conditioned stimuli (CSs) and unconditioned stimuli (USs) commonly employed in two basic associative learning…

  10. A genome-wide scan for signatures of directional selection in domesticated pigs.

    Moon, Sunjin; Kim, Tae-Hun; Lee, Kyung-Tai; Kwak, Woori; Lee, Taeheon; Lee, Si-Woo; Kim, Myung-Jick; Cho, Kyuho; Kim, Namshin; Chung, Won-Hyong; Sung, Samsun; Park, Taesung; Cho, Seoae; Groenen, Martien Am; Nielsen, Rasmus; Kim, Yuseob; Kim, Heebal

    2015-02-25

    Animal domestication involved drastic phenotypic changes driven by strong artificial selection and also resulted in new populations of breeds, established by humans. This study aims to identify genes that show evidence of recent artificial selection during pig domestication. Whole-genome resequencing of 30 individual pigs from domesticated breeds, Landrace and Yorkshire, and 10 Asian wild boars at ~16-fold coverage was performed resulting in over 4.3 million SNPs for 19,990 genes. We constructed a comprehensive genome map of directional selection by detecting selective sweeps using an F ST-based approach that detects directional selection in lineages leading to the domesticated breeds and using a haplotype-based test that detects ongoing selective sweeps within the breeds. We show that candidate genes under selection are significantly enriched for loci implicated in quantitative traits important to pig reproduction and production. The candidate gene with the strongest signals of directional selection belongs to group III of the metabolomics glutamate receptors, known to affect brain functions associated with eating behavior, suggesting that loci under strong selection include loci involved in behaviorial traits in domesticated pigs including tameness. We show that a significant proportion of selection signatures coincide with loci that were previously inferred to affect phenotypic variation in pigs. We further identify functional enrichment related to behavior, such as signal transduction and neuronal activities, for those targets of selection during domestication in pigs.

  11. Neuron selection based on deflection coefficient maximization for the neural decoding of dexterous finger movements.

    Kim, Yong-Hee; Thakor, Nitish V; Schieber, Marc H; Kim, Hyoung-Nam

    2015-05-01

    Future generations of brain-machine interface (BMI) will require more dexterous motion control such as hand and finger movements. Since a population of neurons in the primary motor cortex (M1) area is correlated with finger movements, neural activities recorded in M1 area are used to reconstruct an intended finger movement. In a BMI system, decoding discrete finger movements from a large number of input neurons does not guarantee a higher decoding accuracy in spite of the increase in computational burden. Hence, we hypothesize that selecting neurons important for coding dexterous flexion/extension of finger movements would improve the BMI performance. In this paper, two metrics are presented to quantitatively measure the importance of each neuron based on Bayes risk minimization and deflection coefficient maximization in a statistical decision problem. Since motor cortical neurons are active with movements of several different fingers, the proposed method is more suitable for a discrete decoding of flexion-extension finger movements than the previous methods for decoding reaching movements. In particular, the proposed metrics yielded high decoding accuracies across all subjects and also in the case of including six combined two-finger movements. While our data acquisition and analysis was done off-line and post processing, our results point to the significance of highly coding neurons in improving BMI performance.

  12. Vagal stimulation targets select populations of intrinsic cardiac neurons to control neurally induced atrial fibrillation.

    Salavatian, Siamak; Beaumont, Eric; Longpré, Jean-Philippe; Armour, J Andrew; Vinet, Alain; Jacquemet, Vincent; Shivkumar, Kalyanam; Ardell, Jeffrey L

    2016-11-01

    Mediastinal nerve stimulation (MNS) reproducibly evokes atrial fibrillation (AF) by excessive and heterogeneous activation of intrinsic cardiac (IC) neurons. This study evaluated whether preemptive vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) impacts MNS-induced evoked changes in IC neural network activity to thereby alter susceptibility to AF. IC neuronal activity in the right atrial ganglionated plexus was directly recorded in anesthetized canines (n = 8) using a linear microelectrode array concomitant with right atrial electrical activity in response to: 1) epicardial touch or great vessel occlusion vs. 2) stellate or vagal stimulation. From these stressors, post hoc analysis (based on the Skellam distribution) defined IC neurons so recorded as afferent, efferent, or convergent (afferent and efferent inputs) local circuit neurons (LCN). The capacity of right-sided MNS to modify IC activity in the induction of AF was determined before and after preemptive right (RCV)- vs. left (LCV)-sided VNS (15 Hz, 500 μs; 1.2× bradycardia threshold). Neuronal (n = 89) activity at baseline (0.11 ± 0.29 Hz) increased during MNS-induced AF (0.51 ± 1.30 Hz; P neuronal synchrony increased during neurally induced AF, a local neural network response mitigated by preemptive VNS. These antiarrhythmic effects persisted post-VNS for, on average, 26 min. In conclusion, VNS preferentially targets convergent LCNs and their interactive coherence to mitigate the potential for neurally induced AF. The antiarrhythmic properties imposed by VNS exhibit memory. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  13. Selective neuronal degeneration in the retrosplenial cortex impairs the recall of contextual fear memory.

    Sigwald, Eric L; Genoud, Manuel E; Giachero, Marcelo; de Olmos, Soledad; Molina, Víctor A; Lorenzo, Alfredo

    2016-05-01

    The retrosplenial cortex (RSC) is one of the largest cortical areas in rodents, and is subdivided in two main regions, A29 and A30, according to their cytoarchitectural organization and connectivities. However, very little is known about the functional activity of each RSC subdivision during the execution of complex cognitive tasks. Here, we used a well-established fear learning protocol that induced long-lasting contextual fear memory and showed that during evocation of the fear memory, the expression of early growth response gene 1 was up-regulated in A30, and in other brain areas implicated in fear and spatial memory, however, was down-regulated in A29, including layers IV and V. To search for the participation of A29 on fear memory, we triggered selective degeneration of neurons within cortical layers IV and V of A29 by using a non-invasive protocol that takes advantage of the vulnerability that these neurons have MK801-toxicity and the modulation of this neurodegeneration by testosterone. Application of 5 mg/kg MK801 in intact males induced negligible neuronal degeneration of A29 neurons and had no impact on fear memory retrieval. However, in orchiectomized rats, 5 mg/kg MK801 induced overt degeneration of layers IV-V neurons of A29, significantly impairing fear memory recall. Degeneration of A29 neurons did not affect exploratory or anxiety-related behavior nor altered unconditioned freezing. Importantly, protecting A29 neurons from MK801-toxicity by testosterone preserved fear memory recall in orchiectomized rats. Thus, neurons within cortical layers IV-V of A29 are critically required for efficient retrieval of contextual fear memory.

  14. Mechanisms of Winner-Take-All and Group Selection in Neuronal Spiking Networks.

    Chen, Yanqing

    2017-01-01

    A major function of central nervous systems is to discriminate different categories or types of sensory input. Neuronal networks accomplish such tasks by learning different sensory maps at several stages of neural hierarchy, such that different neurons fire selectively to reflect different internal or external patterns and states. The exact mechanisms of such map formation processes in the brain are not completely understood. Here we study the mechanism by which a simple recurrent/reentrant neuronal network accomplish group selection and discrimination to different inputs in order to generate sensory maps. We describe the conditions and mechanism of transition from a rhythmic epileptic state (in which all neurons fire synchronized and indiscriminately to any input) to a winner-take-all state in which only a subset of neurons fire for a specific input. We prove an analytic condition under which a stable bump solution and a winner-take-all state can emerge from the local recurrent excitation-inhibition interactions in a three-layer spiking network with distinct excitatory and inhibitory populations, and demonstrate the importance of surround inhibitory connection topology on the stability of dynamic patterns in spiking neural network.

  15. Direct Reprogramming of Spiral Ganglion Non-neuronal Cells into Neurons: Toward Ameliorating Sensorineural Hearing Loss by Gene Therapy

    Teppei Noda

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Primary auditory neurons (PANs play a critical role in hearing by transmitting sound information from the inner ear to the brain. Their progressive degeneration is associated with excessive noise, disease and aging. The loss of PANs leads to permanent hearing impairment since they are incapable of regenerating. Spiral ganglion non-neuronal cells (SGNNCs, comprised mainly of glia, are resident within the modiolus and continue to survive after PAN loss. These attributes make SGNNCs an excellent target for replacing damaged PANs through cellular reprogramming. We used the neurogenic pioneer transcription factor Ascl1 and the auditory neuron differentiation factor NeuroD1 to reprogram SGNNCs into induced neurons (iNs. The overexpression of both Ascl1 and NeuroD1 in vitro generated iNs at high efficiency. Transcriptome analyses revealed that iNs displayed a transcriptome profile resembling that of endogenous PANs, including expression of several key markers of neuronal identity: Tubb3, Map2, Prph, Snap25, and Prox1. Pathway analyses indicated that essential pathways in neuronal growth and maturation were activated in cells upon neuronal induction. Furthermore, iNs extended projections toward cochlear hair cells and cochlear nucleus neurons when cultured with each respective tissue. Taken together, our study demonstrates that PAN-like neurons can be generated from endogenous SGNNCs. This work suggests that gene therapy can be a viable strategy to treat sensorineural hearing loss caused by degeneration of PANs.

  16. Layer 6 cortical neurons require Reelin-Dab1 signaling for cellular orientation, Golgi deployment, and directed neurite growth into the marginal zone.

    O'Dell, Ryan S; Ustine, Candida J M; Cameron, David A; Lawless, Sean M; Williams, Rebecca M; Zipfel, Warren R; Olson, Eric C

    2012-07-07

    The secreted ligand Reelin is believed to regulate the translocation of prospective layer 6 (L6) neocortical neurons into the preplate, a loose layer of pioneer neurons that overlies the ventricular zone. Recent studies have also suggested that Reelin controls neuronal orientation and polarized dendritic growth during this period of early cortical development. To explicitly characterize and quantify how Reelin controls this critical aspect of neurite initiation and growth we used a new ex utero explant model of early cortical development to selectively label a subset of L6 cortical neurons for complete 3-D reconstruction. The total neurite arbor sizes of neurons in Reelin-deficient (reeler mutant) and Dab1-deficient (Reelin-non-responsive scrambler mutant) cortices were quantified and unexpectedly were not different than control arbor lengths (p = 0.51). For each mutant, however, arbor organization was markedly different: mutant neurons manifested more primary processes (neurites emitted directly from the soma) than wild type, and these neurites were longer and displayed less branching. Reeler and scrambler mutant neurites extended tangentially rather than radially, and the Golgi apparatus that normally invests the apical neurite was compact in both reeler and scrambler mutants. Mutant cortices also exhibited a neurite "exclusion zone" which was relatively devoid of L6 neuron neurites and extended at least 15 μm beneath the pial surface, an area corresponding to the marginal zone (MZ) in the wild type explants. The presence of an exclusion zone was also indicated in the orientation of mutant primary neurite and neuronal somata, which failed to adopt angles within ~20˚ of the radial line to the pial surface. Injection of recombinant Reelin to reeler, but not scrambler, mutant cortices fully rescued soma orientation, Golgi organization, and dendritic projection defects within four hrs. These findings indicate Reelin promotes directional dendritic growth into

  17. Large-scale Reconstructions and Independent, Unbiased Clustering Based on Morphological Metrics to Classify Neurons in Selective Populations.

    Bragg, Elise M; Briggs, Farran

    2017-02-15

    This protocol outlines large-scale reconstructions of neurons combined with the use of independent and unbiased clustering analyses to create a comprehensive survey of the morphological characteristics observed among a selective neuronal population. Combination of these techniques constitutes a novel approach for the collection and analysis of neuroanatomical data. Together, these techniques enable large-scale, and therefore more comprehensive, sampling of selective neuronal populations and establish unbiased quantitative methods for describing morphologically unique neuronal classes within a population. The protocol outlines the use of modified rabies virus to selectively label neurons. G-deleted rabies virus acts like a retrograde tracer following stereotaxic injection into a target brain structure of interest and serves as a vehicle for the delivery and expression of EGFP in neurons. Large numbers of neurons are infected using this technique and express GFP throughout their dendrites, producing "Golgi-like" complete fills of individual neurons. Accordingly, the virus-mediated retrograde tracing method improves upon traditional dye-based retrograde tracing techniques by producing complete intracellular fills. Individual well-isolated neurons spanning all regions of the brain area under study are selected for reconstruction in order to obtain a representative sample of neurons. The protocol outlines procedures to reconstruct cell bodies and complete dendritic arborization patterns of labeled neurons spanning multiple tissue sections. Morphological data, including positions of each neuron within the brain structure, are extracted for further analysis. Standard programming functions were utilized to perform independent cluster analyses and cluster evaluations based on morphological metrics. To verify the utility of these analyses, statistical evaluation of a cluster analysis performed on 160 neurons reconstructed in the thalamic reticular nucleus of the thalamus

  18. Directional Positive Selection on an Allele of Arbitrary Dominance

    Teshima, Kosuke M.; Przeworski, Molly

    2006-01-01

    Most models of positive directional selection assume codominance of the beneficial allele. We examine the importance of this assumption by implementing a coalescent model of positive directional selection with arbitrary dominance. We find that, for a given mean fixation time, a beneficial allele has a much weaker effect on diversity at linked neutral sites when the allele is recessive.

  19. Modeling HIV-1 drug resistance as episodic directional selection.

    Murrell, Ben; de Oliveira, Tulio; Seebregts, Chris; Kosakovsky Pond, Sergei L; Scheffler, Konrad

    2012-01-01

    The evolution of substitutions conferring drug resistance to HIV-1 is both episodic, occurring when patients are on antiretroviral therapy, and strongly directional, with site-specific resistant residues increasing in frequency over time. While methods exist to detect episodic diversifying selection and continuous directional selection, no evolutionary model combining these two properties has been proposed. We present two models of episodic directional selection (MEDS and EDEPS) which allow the a priori specification of lineages expected to have undergone directional selection. The models infer the sites and target residues that were likely subject to directional selection, using either codon or protein sequences. Compared to its null model of episodic diversifying selection, MEDS provides a superior fit to most sites known to be involved in drug resistance, and neither one test for episodic diversifying selection nor another for constant directional selection are able to detect as many true positives as MEDS and EDEPS while maintaining acceptable levels of false positives. This suggests that episodic directional selection is a better description of the process driving the evolution of drug resistance.

  20. Modeling HIV-1 drug resistance as episodic directional selection.

    Ben Murrell

    Full Text Available The evolution of substitutions conferring drug resistance to HIV-1 is both episodic, occurring when patients are on antiretroviral therapy, and strongly directional, with site-specific resistant residues increasing in frequency over time. While methods exist to detect episodic diversifying selection and continuous directional selection, no evolutionary model combining these two properties has been proposed. We present two models of episodic directional selection (MEDS and EDEPS which allow the a priori specification of lineages expected to have undergone directional selection. The models infer the sites and target residues that were likely subject to directional selection, using either codon or protein sequences. Compared to its null model of episodic diversifying selection, MEDS provides a superior fit to most sites known to be involved in drug resistance, and neither one test for episodic diversifying selection nor another for constant directional selection are able to detect as many true positives as MEDS and EDEPS while maintaining acceptable levels of false positives. This suggests that episodic directional selection is a better description of the process driving the evolution of drug resistance.

  1. Zbtb20 Defines a Hippocampal Neuronal Identity Through Direct Repression of Genes That Control Projection Neuron Development in the Isocortex

    Nielsen, Jakob V; Thomassen, Mads; Møllgård, Kjeld

    2014-01-01

    Hippocampal pyramidal neurons are important for encoding and retrieval of spatial maps and episodic memories. While previous work has shown that Zbtb20 is a cell fate determinant for CA1 pyramidal neurons, the regulatory mechanisms governing this process are not known. In this study, we demonstrate...

  2. Cerebellins are differentially expressed in selective subsets of neurons throughout the brain.

    Seigneur, Erica; Südhof, Thomas C

    2017-10-15

    Cerebellins are secreted hexameric proteins that form tripartite complexes with the presynaptic cell-adhesion molecules neurexins or 'deleted-in-colorectal-cancer', and the postsynaptic glutamate-receptor-related proteins GluD1 and GluD2. These tripartite complexes are thought to regulate synapses. However, cerebellins are expressed in multiple isoforms whose relative distributions and overall functions are not understood. Three of the four cerebellins, Cbln1, Cbln2, and Cbln4, autonomously assemble into homohexamers, whereas the Cbln3 requires Cbln1 for assembly and secretion. Here, we show that Cbln1, Cbln2, and Cbln4 are abundantly expressed in nearly all brain regions, but exhibit strikingly different expression patterns and developmental dynamics. Using newly generated knockin reporter mice for Cbln2 and Cbln4, we find that Cbln2 and Cbln4 are not universally expressed in all neurons, but only in specific subsets of neurons. For example, Cbln2 and Cbln4 are broadly expressed in largely non-overlapping subpopulations of excitatory cortical neurons, but only sparse expression was observed in excitatory hippocampal neurons of the CA1- or CA3-region. Similarly, Cbln2 and Cbln4 are selectively expressed, respectively, in inhibitory interneurons and excitatory mitral projection neurons of the main olfactory bulb; here, these two classes of neurons form dendrodendritic reciprocal synapses with each other. A few brain regions, such as the nucleus of the lateral olfactory tract, exhibit astoundingly high Cbln2 expression levels. Viewed together, our data show that cerebellins are abundantly expressed in relatively small subsets of neurons, suggesting specific roles restricted to subsets of synapses. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  3. The Effect of Substrate Topography on Direct Reprogramming of Fibroblasts to Induced Neurons

    Kulangara, Karina; Adler, Andrew F.; Wang, Hong; Chellappan, Malathi; Hammett, Ellen; Yasuda, Ryohei; Leong, Kam W.

    2014-01-01

    Cellular reprogramming holds tremendous potential for cell therapy and regenerative medicine. Recently, fibroblasts have been directly converted into induced neurons (iNs) by overexpression of the neuronal transcription factors Ascl1, Brn2 and Myt1L. Hypothesizing that cell-topography interactions could influence the fibroblast-to-neuron reprogramming process, we investigated the effects of various topographies on iNs produced by direct reprogramming. Final iN purity and conversion efficiency were increased on micrograting substrates. Neurite branching was increased on microposts and decreased on microgratings, with a simplified dendritic arbor characterized by the reduction of MAP2+ neurites. Neurite outgrowth increased significantly on various topographies. DNA microarray analysis detected 20 differentially expressed genes in iNs reprogrammed on smooth versus microgratings, and quantitative PCR (qPCR) confirmed the upregulation of Vip and downregulation of Thy1 and Bmp5 on microgratings. Electrophysiology and calcium imaging verified the functionality of these iNs. This study demonstrates the potential of applying topographical cues to optimize cellular reprogramming. PMID:24709523

  4. Direct conversion of human pluripotent stem cells into cranial motor neurons using a piggyBac vector

    Riccardo De Santis

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Human pluripotent stem cells (PSCs are widely used for in vitro disease modeling. One of the challenges in the field is represented by the ability of converting human PSCs into specific disease-relevant cell types. The nervous system is composed of a wide variety of neuronal types with selective vulnerability in neurodegenerative diseases. This is particularly relevant for motor neuron diseases, in which different motor neurons populations show a different susceptibility to degeneration. Here we developed a fast and efficient method to convert human induced Pluripotent Stem Cells into cranial motor neurons of the branchiomotor and visceral motor subtype. These populations represent the motor neuron subgroup that is primarily affected by a severe form of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis with bulbar onset and worst prognosis. This goal was achieved by stable integration of an inducible vector, based on the piggyBac transposon, allowing controlled activation of Ngn2, Isl1 and Phox2a (NIP. The NIP module effectively produced electrophysiologically active cranial motor neurons. Our method can be easily extended to PSCs carrying disease-associated mutations, thus providing a useful tool to shed light on the cellular and molecular bases of selective motor neuron vulnerability in pathological conditions. Keywords: Spinal motor neuron, Cranial motor neuron, Induced pluripotent stem cells, Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Phox2a, piggyBac

  5. Selective inhibition of miR-92 in hippocampal neurons alters contextual fear memory.

    Vetere, Gisella; Barbato, Christian; Pezzola, Silvia; Frisone, Paola; Aceti, Massimiliano; Ciotti, MariaTeresa; Cogoni, Carlo; Ammassari-Teule, Martine; Ruberti, Francesca

    2014-12-01

    Post-transcriptional gene regulation mediated by microRNAs (miRNAs) is implicated in memory formation; however, the function of miR-92 in this regulation is uncharacterized. The present study shows that training mice in contextual fear conditioning produces a transient increase in miR-92 levels in the hippocampus and decreases several miR-92 gene targets, including: (i) the neuronal Cl(-) extruding K(+) Cl(-) co-transporter 2 (KCC2) protein; (ii) the cytoplasmic polyadenylation protein (CPEB3), an RNA-binding protein regulator of protein synthesis in neurons; and (iii) the transcription factor myocyte enhancer factor 2D (MEF2D), one of the MEF2 genes which negatively regulates memory-induced structural plasticity. Selective inhibition of endogenous miR-92 in CA1 hippocampal neurons, by a sponge lentiviral vector expressing multiple sequences imperfectly complementary to mature miR-92 under the control of the neuronal specific synapsin promoter, leads to up-regulation of KCC2, CPEB3 and MEF2D, impairs contextual fear conditioning, and prevents a memory-induced increase in the spine density. Taken together, the results indicate that neuronal-expressed miR-92 is an endogenous fine regulator of contextual fear memory in mice. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  6. Mean-field analysis of orientation selectivity in inhibition-dominated networks of spiking neurons.

    Sadeh, Sadra; Cardanobile, Stefano; Rotter, Stefan

    2014-01-01

    Mechanisms underlying the emergence of orientation selectivity in the primary visual cortex are highly debated. Here we study the contribution of inhibition-dominated random recurrent networks to orientation selectivity, and more generally to sensory processing. By simulating and analyzing large-scale networks of spiking neurons, we investigate tuning amplification and contrast invariance of orientation selectivity in these networks. In particular, we show how selective attenuation of the common mode and amplification of the modulation component take place in these networks. Selective attenuation of the baseline, which is governed by the exceptional eigenvalue of the connectivity matrix, removes the unspecific, redundant signal component and ensures the invariance of selectivity across different contrasts. Selective amplification of modulation, which is governed by the operating regime of the network and depends on the strength of coupling, amplifies the informative signal component and thus increases the signal-to-noise ratio. Here, we perform a mean-field analysis which accounts for this process.

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

    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.

  8. Evidence of directional and stabilizing selection in contemporary humans.

    Sanjak, Jaleal S; Sidorenko, Julia; Robinson, Matthew R; Thornton, Kevin R; Visscher, Peter M

    2018-01-02

    Modern molecular genetic datasets, primarily collected to study the biology of human health and disease, can be used to directly measure the action of natural selection and reveal important features of contemporary human evolution. Here we leverage the UK Biobank data to test for the presence of linear and nonlinear natural selection in a contemporary population of the United Kingdom. We obtain phenotypic and genetic evidence consistent with the action of linear/directional selection. Phenotypic evidence suggests that stabilizing selection, which acts to reduce variance in the population without necessarily modifying the population mean, is widespread and relatively weak in comparison with estimates from other species.

  9. Direct evidence for activity-dependent glucose phosphorylation in neurons with implications for the astrocyte-to-neuron lactate shuttle

    Patel, Anant B.; Lai, James C. K.; Chowdhury, Golam M. I.; Hyder, Fahmeed; Rothman, Douglas L.; Shulman, Robert G.; Behar, Kevin L.

    2014-01-01

    A near one-to-one relationship had previously been observed between increments in the fluxes of the glutamate−glutamine neurotransmitter cycle and neuronal glucose oxidation in the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle. This flux relationship was consistent with a hypothesized mechanism involving glycolytic ATP in astrocytes and astrocyte-to-neuron lactate shuttling. Here, 2-fluoro-2-deoxy-d-glucose was used to evaluate the glucose flux through glycolysis and the TCA cycle in nerve terminals isolate...

  10. Directional selection in temporally replicated studies is remarkably consistent.

    Morrissey, Michael B; Hadfield, Jarrod D

    2012-02-01

    Temporal variation in selection is a fundamental determinant of evolutionary outcomes. A recent paper presented a synthetic analysis of temporal variation in selection in natural populations. The authors concluded that there is substantial variation in the strength and direction of selection over time, but acknowledged that sampling error would result in estimates of selection that were more variable than the true values. We reanalyze their dataset using techniques that account for the necessary effect of sampling error to inflate apparent levels of variation and show that directional selection is remarkably constant over time, both in magnitude and direction. Thus we cannot claim that the available data support the existence of substantial temporal heterogeneity in selection. Nonetheless, we conject that temporal variation in selection could be important, but that there are good reasons why it may not appear in the available data. These new analyses highlight the importance of applying techniques that estimate parameters of the distribution of selection, rather than parameters of the distribution of estimated selection (which will reflect both sampling error and "real" variation in selection); indeed, despite availability of methods for the former, focus on the latter has been common in synthetic reviews of the aspects of selection in nature, and can lead to serious misinterpretations. © 2011 The Author(s). Evolution© 2011 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  11. Vagal stimulation targets select populations of intrinsic cardiac neurons to control neurally induced atrial fibrillation

    Salavatian, Siamak; Beaumont, Eric; Longpré, Jean-Philippe; Armour, J. Andrew; Vinet, Alain; Jacquemet, Vincent; Shivkumar, Kalyanam

    2016-01-01

    Mediastinal nerve stimulation (MNS) reproducibly evokes atrial fibrillation (AF) by excessive and heterogeneous activation of intrinsic cardiac (IC) neurons. This study evaluated whether preemptive vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) impacts MNS-induced evoked changes in IC neural network activity to thereby alter susceptibility to AF. IC neuronal activity in the right atrial ganglionated plexus was directly recorded in anesthetized canines (n = 8) using a linear microelectrode array concomitant with right atrial electrical activity in response to: 1) epicardial touch or great vessel occlusion vs. 2) stellate or vagal stimulation. From these stressors, post hoc analysis (based on the Skellam distribution) defined IC neurons so recorded as afferent, efferent, or convergent (afferent and efferent inputs) local circuit neurons (LCN). The capacity of right-sided MNS to modify IC activity in the induction of AF was determined before and after preemptive right (RCV)- vs. left (LCV)-sided VNS (15 Hz, 500 μs; 1.2× bradycardia threshold). Neuronal (n = 89) activity at baseline (0.11 ± 0.29 Hz) increased during MNS-induced AF (0.51 ± 1.30 Hz; P < 0.001). Convergent LCNs were preferentially activated by MNS. Preemptive RCV reduced MNS-induced changes in LCN activity (by 70%) while mitigating MNS-induced AF (by 75%). Preemptive LCV reduced LCN activity by 60% while mitigating AF potential by 40%. IC neuronal synchrony increased during neurally induced AF, a local neural network response mitigated by preemptive VNS. These antiarrhythmic effects persisted post-VNS for, on average, 26 min. In conclusion, VNS preferentially targets convergent LCNs and their interactive coherence to mitigate the potential for neurally induced AF. The antiarrhythmic properties imposed by VNS exhibit memory. PMID:27591222

  12. Neurons refine the Caenorhabditis elegans body plan by directing axial patterning by Wnts.

    Katarzyna Modzelewska

    Full Text Available Metazoans display remarkable conservation of gene families, including growth factors, yet somehow these genes are used in different ways to generate tremendous morphological diversity. While variations in the magnitude and spatio-temporal aspects of signaling by a growth factor can generate different body patterns, how these signaling variations are organized and coordinated during development is unclear. Basic body plans are organized by the end of gastrulation and are refined as limbs, organs, and nervous systems co-develop. Despite their proximity to developing tissues, neurons are primarily thought to act after development, on behavior. Here, we show that in Caenorhabditis elegans, the axonal projections of neurons regulate tissue progenitor responses to Wnts so that certain organs develop with the correct morphology at the right axial positions. We find that foreshortening of the posteriorly directed axons of the two canal-associated neurons (CANs disrupts mid-body vulval morphology, and produces ectopic vulval tissue in the posterior epidermis, in a Wnt-dependent manner. We also provide evidence that suggests that the posterior CAN axons modulate the location and strength of Wnt signaling along the anterior-posterior axis by employing a Ror family Wnt receptor to bind posteriorly derived Wnts, and hence, refine their distributions. Surprisingly, despite high levels of Ror expression in many other cells, these cells cannot substitute for the CAN axons in patterning the epidermis, nor can cells expressing a secreted Wnt inhibitor, SFRP-1. Thus, unmyelinated axon tracts are critical for patterning the C. elegans body. Our findings suggest that the evolution of neurons not only improved metazoans by increasing behavioral complexity, but also by expanding the diversity of developmental patterns generated by growth factors such as Wnts.

  13. Adenoviral vectors for highly selective gene expression in central serotonergic neurons reveal quantal characteristics of serotonin release in the rat brain

    Teschemacher Anja G

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background 5-hydroxytryptamine (5 HT, serotonin is one of the key neuromodulators in mammalian brain, but many fundamental properties of serotonergic neurones and 5 HT release remain unknown. The objective of this study was to generate an adenoviral vector system for selective targeting of serotonergic neurones and apply it to study quantal characteristics of 5 HT release in the rat brain. Results We have generated adenoviral vectors which incorporate a 3.6 kb fragment of the rat tryptophan hydroxylase-2 (TPH-2 gene which selectively (97% co-localisation with TPH-2 target raphe serotonergic neurones. In order to enhance the level of expression a two-step transcriptional amplification strategy was employed. This allowed direct visualization of serotonergic neurones by EGFP fluorescence. Using these vectors we have performed initial characterization of EGFP-expressing serotonergic neurones in rat organotypic brain slice cultures. Fluorescent serotonergic neurones were identified and studied using patch clamp and confocal Ca2+ imaging and had features consistent with those previously reported using post-hoc identification approaches. Fine processes of serotonergic neurones could also be visualized in un-fixed tissue and morphometric analysis suggested two putative types of axonal varicosities. We used micro-amperometry to analyse the quantal characteristics of 5 HT release and found that central 5 HT exocytosis occurs predominantly in quanta of ~28000 molecules from varicosities and ~34000 molecules from cell bodies. In addition, in somata, we observed a minority of large release events discharging on average ~800000 molecules. Conclusion For the first time quantal release of 5 HT from somato-dendritic compartments and axonal varicosities in mammalian brain has been demonstrated directly and characterised. Release from somato-dendritic and axonal compartments might have different physiological functions. Novel vectors generated in this

  14. Transcranial magnetic stimulation changes response selectivity of neurons in the visual cortex

    Kim, Taekjun; Allen, Elena A.; Pasley, Brian N.; Freeman, Ralph D.

    2015-01-01

    Background Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is used to selectively alter neuronal activity of specific regions in the cerebral cortex. TMS is reported to induce either transient disruption or enhancement of different neural functions. However, its effects on tuning properties of sensory neurons have not been studied quantitatively. Objective/Hypothesis Here, we use specific TMS application parameters to determine how they may alter tuning characteristics (orientation, spatial frequency, and contrast sensitivity) of single neurons in the cat’s visual cortex. Methods Single unit spikes were recorded with tungsten microelectrodes from the visual cortex of anesthetized and paralyzed cats (12 males). Repetitive TMS (4Hz, 4sec) was delivered with a 70mm figure-8 coil. We quantified basic tuning parameters of individual neurons for each pre- and post-TMS condition. The statistical significance of changes for each tuning parameter between the two conditions was evaluated with a Wilcoxon signed-rank test. Results We generally find long-lasting suppression which persists well beyond the stimulation period. Pre- and post-TMS orientation tuning curves show constant peak values. However, strong suppression at non-preferred orientations tends to narrow the widths of tuning curves. Spatial frequency tuning exhibits an asymmetric change in overall shape, which results in an emphasis on higher frequencies. Contrast tuning curves show nonlinear changes consistent with a gain control mechanism. Conclusions These findings suggest that TMS causes extended interruption of the balance between sub-cortical and intra-cortical inputs. PMID:25862599

  15. Nanometer size diesel exhaust particles are selectively toxic to dopaminergic neurons: the role of microglia, phagocytosis, and NADPH oxidase.

    Block, M L; Wu, X; Pei, Z; Li, G; Wang, T; Qin, L; Wilson, B; Yang, J; Hong, J S; Veronesi, B

    2004-10-01

    The contributing role of environmental factors to the development of Parkinson's disease has become increasingly evident. We report that mesencephalic neuron-glia cultures treated with diesel exhaust particles (DEP; 0.22 microM) (5-50 microg/ml) resulted in a dose-dependent decrease in dopaminergic (DA) neurons, as determined by DA-uptake assay and tyrosine-hydroxylase immunocytochemistry (ICC). The selective toxicity of DEP for DA neurons was demonstrated by the lack of DEP effect on both GABA uptake and Neu-N immunoreactive cell number. The critical role of microglia was demonstrated by the failure of neuron-enriched cultures to exhibit DEP-induced DA neurotoxicity, where DEP-induced DA neuron death was reinstated with the addition of microglia to neuron-enriched cultures. OX-42 ICC staining of DEP treated neuron-glia cultures revealed changes in microglia morphology indicative of activation. Intracellular reactive oxygen species and superoxide were produced from enriched-microglia cultures in response to DEP. Neuron-glia cultures from NADPH oxidase deficient (PHOX-/-) mice were insensitive to DEP neurotoxicity when compared with control mice (PHOX+/+). Cytochalasin D inhibited DEP-induced superoxide production in enriched-microglia cultures, implying that DEP must be phagocytized by microglia to produce superoxide. Together, these in vitro data indicate that DEP selectively damages DA neurons through the phagocytic activation of microglial NADPH oxidase and consequent oxidative insult.

  16. Direction-selective circuitry in rat retina develops independently of GABAergic, cholinergic and action potential activity.

    Le Sun

    Full Text Available The ON-OFF direction selective ganglion cells (DSGCs in the mammalian retina code image motion by responding much more strongly to movement in one direction. They do so by receiving inhibitory inputs selectively from a particular sector of processes of the overlapping starburst amacrine cells, a type of retinal interneuron. The mechanisms of establishment and regulation of this selective connection are unknown. Here, we report that in the rat retina, the morphology, physiology of the ON-OFF DSGCs and the circuitry for coding motion directions develop normally with pharmacological blockade of GABAergic, cholinergic activity and/or action potentials for over two weeks from birth. With recent results demonstrating light independent formation of the retinal DS circuitry, our results strongly suggest the formation of the circuitry, i.e., the connections between the second and third order neurons in the visual system, can be genetically programmed, although emergence of direction selectivity in the visual cortex appears to require visual experience.

  17. Orexins control intestinal glucose transport by distinct neuronal, endocrine, and direct epithelial pathways.

    Ducroc, Robert; Voisin, Thierry; El Firar, Aadil; Laburthe, Marc

    2007-10-01

    Orexins are neuropeptides involved in energy homeostasis. We investigated the effect of orexin A (OxA) and orexin B (OxB) on intestinal glucose transport in the rat. Injection of orexins led to a decrease in the blood glucose level in oral glucose tolerance tests (OGTTs). Effects of orexins on glucose entry were analyzed in Ussing chambers using the Na(+)-dependent increase in short-circuit current (Isc) to quantify jejunal glucose transport. The rapid and marked increase in Isc induced by luminal glucose was inhibited by 10 nmol/l OxA or OxB (53 and 59%, respectively). Response curves to OxA and OxB were not significantly different with half-maximal inhibitory concentrations at 0.9 and 0.4 nmol/l, respectively. On the one hand, OxA-induced inhibition of Isc was reduced by the neuronal blocker tetrodotoxin (TTX) and by a cholecystokinin (CCK) 2R antagonist, indicating involvement of neuronal and endocrine CCK-releasing cells. The OX(1)R antagonist SB334867 had no effect on OxA-induced inhibition, which is likely to occur via a neuronal and/or endocrine OX(2)R. On the other hand, SB334867 induced a significant right shift of the concentration-effect curve for OxB. This OxB-preferring OX(1)R pathway was not sensitive to TTX or to CCKR antagonists, suggesting that OxB may act directly on enterocytic OX(1)R. These distinct effects of OxA and OxB are consistent with the expression of OX(1)R and OX(2)R mRNA in the epithelial and nonepithelial tissues, respectively. Our data delineate a new function for orexins as inhibitors of intestinal glucose absorption and provide a new basis for orexin-induced short-term control of energy homeostasis.

  18. Interspike Interval Based Filtering of Directional Selective Retinal Ganglion Cells Spike Trains

    Aurel Vasile Martiniuc

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The information regarding visual stimulus is encoded in spike trains at the output of retina by retinal ganglion cells (RGCs. Among these, the directional selective cells (DSRGC are signaling the direction of stimulus motion. DSRGCs' spike trains show accentuated periods of short interspike intervals (ISIs framed by periods of isolated spikes. Here we use two types of visual stimulus, white noise and drifting bars, and show that short ISI spikes of DSRGCs spike trains are more often correlated to their preferred stimulus feature (that is, the direction of stimulus motion and carry more information than longer ISI spikes. Firstly, our results show that correlation between stimulus and recorded neuronal response is best at short ISI spiking activity and decrease as ISI becomes larger. We then used grating bars stimulus and found that as ISI becomes shorter the directional selectivity is better and information rates are higher. Interestingly, for the less encountered type of DSRGC, known as ON-DSRGC, short ISI distribution and information rates revealed consistent differences when compared with the other directional selective cell type, the ON-OFF DSRGC. However, these findings suggest that ISI-based temporal filtering integrates a mechanism for visual information processing at the output of retina toward higher stages within early visual system.

  19. Robust Adaptive Synchronization of Ring Configured Uncertain Chaotic FitzHugh–Nagumo Neurons under Direction-Dependent Coupling

    Muhammad Iqbal

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available This paper exploits the dynamical modeling, behavior analysis, and synchronization of a network of four different FitzHugh–Nagumo (FHN neurons with unknown parameters linked in a ring configuration under direction-dependent coupling. The main purpose is to investigate a robust adaptive control law for the synchronization of uncertain and perturbed neurons, communicating in a medium of bidirectional coupling. The neurons are assumed to be different and interconnected in a ring structure. The strength of the gap junctions is taken to be different for each link in the network, owing to the inter-neuronal coupling medium properties. Robust adaptive control mechanism based on Lyapunov stability analysis is employed and theoretical criteria are derived to realize the synchronization of the network of four FHN neurons in a ring form with unknown parameters under direction-dependent coupling and disturbances. The proposed scheme for synchronization of dissimilar neurons, under external electrical stimuli, coupled in a ring communication topology, having all parameters unknown, and subject to directional coupling medium and perturbations, is addressed for the first time as per our knowledge. To demonstrate the efficacy of the proposed strategy, simulation results are provided.

  20. Robust Adaptive Synchronization of Ring Configured Uncertain Chaotic FitzHugh–Nagumo Neurons under Direction-Dependent Coupling

    Iqbal, Muhammad; Rehan, Muhammad; Hong, Keum-Shik

    2018-01-01

    This paper exploits the dynamical modeling, behavior analysis, and synchronization of a network of four different FitzHugh–Nagumo (FHN) neurons with unknown parameters linked in a ring configuration under direction-dependent coupling. The main purpose is to investigate a robust adaptive control law for the synchronization of uncertain and perturbed neurons, communicating in a medium of bidirectional coupling. The neurons are assumed to be different and interconnected in a ring structure. The strength of the gap junctions is taken to be different for each link in the network, owing to the inter-neuronal coupling medium properties. Robust adaptive control mechanism based on Lyapunov stability analysis is employed and theoretical criteria are derived to realize the synchronization of the network of four FHN neurons in a ring form with unknown parameters under direction-dependent coupling and disturbances. The proposed scheme for synchronization of dissimilar neurons, under external electrical stimuli, coupled in a ring communication topology, having all parameters unknown, and subject to directional coupling medium and perturbations, is addressed for the first time as per our knowledge. To demonstrate the efficacy of the proposed strategy, simulation results are provided. PMID:29535622

  1. Directed forgetting of visual symbols: evidence for nonverbal selective rehearsal.

    Hourihan, Kathleen L; Ozubko, Jason D; MacLeod, Colin M

    2009-12-01

    Is selective rehearsal possible for nonverbal information? Two experiments addressed this question using the item method directed forgetting paradigm, where the advantage of remember items over forget items is ascribed to selective rehearsal favoring the remember items. In both experiments, difficult-to-name abstract symbols were presented for study, followed by a recognition test. Directed forgetting effects were evident for these symbols, regardless of whether they were or were not spontaneously named. Critically, a directed forgetting effect was observed for unnamed symbols even when the symbols were studied under verbal suppression to prevent verbal rehearsal. This pattern indicates that a form of nonverbal rehearsal can be used strategically (i.e., selectively) to enhance memory, even when verbal rehearsal is not possible.

  2. Interface Pattern Selection Criterion for Cellular Structures in Directional Solidification

    Trivedi, R.; Tewari, S. N.; Kurtze, D.

    1999-01-01

    The aim of this investigation is to establish key scientific concepts that govern the selection of cellular and dendritic patterns during the directional solidification of alloys. We shall first address scientific concepts that are crucial in the selection of interface patterns. Next, the results of ground-based experimental studies in the Al-4.0 wt % Cu system will be described. Both experimental studies and theoretical calculations will be presented to establish the need for microgravity experiments.

  3. Directional selection causes decanalization in a group I ribozyme.

    Hayden, Eric J; Weikert, Christian; Wagner, Andreas

    2012-01-01

    A canalized genotype is robust to environmental or genetic perturbations. Canalization is expected to result from stabilizing selection on a well-adapted phenotype. Decanalization, the loss of robustness, might follow periods of directional selection toward a new optimum. The evolutionary forces causing decanalization are still unknown, in part because it is difficult to determine the fitness effects of mutations in populations of organisms with complex genotypes and phenotypes. Here, we report direct experimental measurements of robustness in a system with a simple genotype and phenotype, the catalytic activity of an RNA enzyme. We find that the robustness of a population of RNA enzymes decreases during a period of directional selection in the laboratory. The decrease in robustness is primarily caused by the selective sweep of a genotype that is decanalized relative to the wild-type, both in terms of mutational robustness and environmental robustness (thermodynamic stability). Our results experimentally demonstrate that directional selection can cause decanalization on short time scales, and demonstrate co-evolution of mutational and environmental robustness.

  4. Divisive normalization and neuronal oscillations in a single hierarchical framework of selective visual attention.

    Montijn, Jorrit Steven; Klink, P Christaan; van Wezel, Richard J A

    2012-01-01

    Divisive normalization models of covert attention commonly use spike rate modulations as indicators of the effect of top-down attention. In addition, an increasing number of studies have shown that top-down attention increases the synchronization of neuronal oscillations as well, particularly in gamma-band frequencies (25-100 Hz). Although modulations of spike rate and synchronous oscillations are not mutually exclusive as mechanisms of attention, there has thus far been little effort to integrate these concepts into a single framework of attention. Here, we aim to provide such a unified framework by expanding the normalization model of attention with a multi-level hierarchical structure and a time dimension; allowing the simulation of a recently reported backward progression of attentional effects along the visual cortical hierarchy. A simple cascade of normalization models simulating different cortical areas is shown to cause signal degradation and a loss of stimulus discriminability over time. To negate this degradation and ensure stable neuronal stimulus representations, we incorporate a kind of oscillatory phase entrainment into our model that has previously been proposed as the "communication-through-coherence" (CTC) hypothesis. Our analysis shows that divisive normalization and oscillation models can complement each other in a unified account of the neural mechanisms of selective visual attention. The resulting hierarchical normalization and oscillation (HNO) model reproduces several additional spatial and temporal aspects of attentional modulation and predicts a latency effect on neuronal responses as a result of cued attention.

  5. Inference of directional selection and mutation parameters assuming equilibrium.

    Vogl, Claus; Bergman, Juraj

    2015-12-01

    In a classical study, Wright (1931) proposed a model for the evolution of a biallelic locus under the influence of mutation, directional selection and drift. He derived the equilibrium distribution of the allelic proportion conditional on the scaled mutation rate, the mutation bias and the scaled strength of directional selection. The equilibrium distribution can be used for inference of these parameters with genome-wide datasets of "site frequency spectra" (SFS). Assuming that the scaled mutation rate is low, Wright's model can be approximated by a boundary-mutation model, where mutations are introduced into the population exclusively from sites fixed for the preferred or unpreferred allelic states. With the boundary-mutation model, inference can be partitioned: (i) the shape of the SFS distribution within the polymorphic region is determined by random drift and directional selection, but not by the mutation parameters, such that inference of the selection parameter relies exclusively on the polymorphic sites in the SFS; (ii) the mutation parameters can be inferred from the amount of polymorphic and monomorphic preferred and unpreferred alleles, conditional on the selection parameter. Herein, we derive maximum likelihood estimators for the mutation and selection parameters in equilibrium and apply the method to simulated SFS data as well as empirical data from a Madagascar population of Drosophila simulans. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Hand placement near the visual stimulus improves orientation selectivity in V2 neurons

    Sergio, Lauren E.; Crawford, J. Douglas; Fallah, Mazyar

    2015-01-01

    Often, the brain receives more sensory input than it can process simultaneously. Spatial attention helps overcome this limitation by preferentially processing input from a behaviorally-relevant location. Recent neuropsychological and psychophysical studies suggest that attention is deployed to near-hand space much like how the oculomotor system can deploy attention to an upcoming gaze position. Here we provide the first neuronal evidence that the presence of a nearby hand enhances orientation selectivity in early visual processing area V2. When the hand was placed outside the receptive field, responses to the preferred orientation were significantly enhanced without a corresponding significant increase at the orthogonal orientation. Consequently, there was also a significant sharpening of orientation tuning. In addition, the presence of the hand reduced neuronal response variability. These results indicate that attention is automatically deployed to the space around a hand, improving orientation selectivity. Importantly, this appears to be optimal for motor control of the hand, as opposed to oculomotor mechanisms which enhance responses without sharpening orientation selectivity. Effector-based mechanisms for visual enhancement thus support not only the spatiotemporal dissociation of gaze and reach, but also the optimization of vision for their separate requirements for guiding movements. PMID:25717165

  7. Estrogen receptor beta-selective agonists stimulate calcium oscillations in human and mouse embryonic stem cell-derived neurons.

    Lili Zhang

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Estrogens are used extensively to treat hot flashes in menopausal women. Some of the beneficial effects of estrogens in hormone therapy on the brain might be due to nongenomic effects in neurons such as the rapid stimulation of calcium oscillations. Most studies have examined the nongenomic effects of estrogen receptors (ER in primary neurons or brain slices from the rodent brain. However, these cells can not be maintained continuously in culture because neurons are post-mitotic. Neurons derived from embryonic stem cells could be a potential continuous, cell-based model to study nongenomic actions of estrogens in neurons if they are responsive to estrogens after differentiation. In this study ER-subtype specific estrogens were used to examine the role of ERalpha and ERbeta on calcium oscillations in neurons derived from human (hES and mouse embryonic stem cells. Unlike the undifferentiated hES cells the differentiated cells expressed neuronal markers, ERbeta, but not ERalpha. The non-selective ER agonist 17beta-estradiol (E(2 rapidly increased [Ca2+]i oscillations and synchronizations within a few minutes. No change in calcium oscillations was observed with the selective ERalpha agonist 4,4',4''-(4-Propyl-[1H]-pyrazole-1,3,5-triyltrisphenol (PPT. In contrast, the selective ERbeta agonists, 2,3-bis(4-Hydroxyphenyl-propionitrile (DPN, MF101, and 2-(3-fluoro-4-hydroxyphenyl-7-vinyl-1,3 benzoxazol-5-ol (ERB-041; WAY-202041 stimulated calcium oscillations similar to E(2. The ERbeta agonists also increased calcium oscillations and phosphorylated PKC, AKT and ERK1/2 in neurons derived from mouse ES cells, which was inhibited by nifedipine demonstrating that ERbeta activates L-type voltage gated calcium channels to regulate neuronal activity. Our results demonstrate that ERbeta signaling regulates nongenomic pathways in neurons derived from ES cells, and suggest that these cells might be useful to study the nongenomic mechanisms of estrogenic compounds.

  8. Synchronization of Coupled Different Chaotic FitzHugh-Nagumo Neurons with Unknown Parameters under Communication-Direction-Dependent Coupling

    Muhammad Iqbal

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper investigates the chaotic behavior and synchronization of two different coupled chaotic FitzHugh-Nagumo (FHN neurons with unknown parameters under external electrical stimulation (EES. The coupled FHN neurons of different parameters admit unidirectional and bidirectional gap junctions in the medium between them. Dynamical properties, such as the increase in synchronization error as a consequence of the deviation of neuronal parameters for unlike neurons, the effect of difference in coupling strengths caused by the unidirectional gap junctions, and the impact of large time-delay due to separation of neurons, are studied in exploring the behavior of the coupled system. A novel integral-based nonlinear adaptive control scheme, to cope with the infeasibility of the recovery variable, for synchronization of two coupled delayed chaotic FHN neurons of different and unknown parameters under uncertain EES is derived. Further, to guarantee robust synchronization of different neurons against disturbances, the proposed control methodology is modified to achieve the uniformly ultimately bounded synchronization. The parametric estimation errors can be reduced by selecting suitable control parameters. The effectiveness of the proposed control scheme is illustrated via numerical simulations.

  9. Synchronization of coupled different chaotic FitzHugh-Nagumo neurons with unknown parameters under communication-direction-dependent coupling.

    Iqbal, Muhammad; Rehan, Muhammad; Khaliq, Abdul; Saeed-ur-Rehman; Hong, Keum-Shik

    2014-01-01

    This paper investigates the chaotic behavior and synchronization of two different coupled chaotic FitzHugh-Nagumo (FHN) neurons with unknown parameters under external electrical stimulation (EES). The coupled FHN neurons of different parameters admit unidirectional and bidirectional gap junctions in the medium between them. Dynamical properties, such as the increase in synchronization error as a consequence of the deviation of neuronal parameters for unlike neurons, the effect of difference in coupling strengths caused by the unidirectional gap junctions, and the impact of large time-delay due to separation of neurons, are studied in exploring the behavior of the coupled system. A novel integral-based nonlinear adaptive control scheme, to cope with the infeasibility of the recovery variable, for synchronization of two coupled delayed chaotic FHN neurons of different and unknown parameters under uncertain EES is derived. Further, to guarantee robust synchronization of different neurons against disturbances, the proposed control methodology is modified to achieve the uniformly ultimately bounded synchronization. The parametric estimation errors can be reduced by selecting suitable control parameters. The effectiveness of the proposed control scheme is illustrated via numerical simulations.

  10. Direct Reprogramming of Adult Human Somatic Stem Cells Into Functional Neurons Using Sox2, Ascl1, and Neurog2

    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.

  11. Selective increase of in vivo firing frequencies in DA SN neurons after proteasome inhibition in the ventral midbrain.

    Subramaniam, Mahalakshmi; Kern, Beatrice; Vogel, Simone; Klose, Verena; Schneider, Gaby; Roeper, Jochen

    2014-09-01

    The impairment of protein degradation via the ubiquitin-proteasome system (UPS) is present in sporadic Parkinson's disease (PD), and might play a key role in selective degeneration of vulnerable dopamine (DA) neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta (SN). Further evidence for a causal role of dysfunctional UPS in familial PD comes from mutations in parkin, which results in a loss of function of an E3-ubiquitin-ligase. In a mouse model, genetic inactivation of an essential component of the 26S proteasome lead to widespread neuronal degeneration including DA midbrain neurons and the formation of alpha-synuclein-positive inclusion bodies, another hallmark of PD. Studies using pharmacological UPS inhibition in vivo had more mixed results, varying from extensive degeneration to no loss of DA SN neurons. However, it is currently unknown whether UPS impairment will affect the neurophysiological functions of DA midbrain neurons. To answer this question, we infused a selective proteasome inhibitor into the ventral midbrain in vivo and recorded single DA midbrain neurons 2 weeks after the proteasome challenge. We found a selective increase in the mean in vivo firing frequencies of identified DA SN neurons in anesthetized mice, while those in the ventral tegmental area (VTA) were unaffected. Our results demonstrate that a single-hit UPS inhibition is sufficient to induce a stable and selective hyperexcitability phenotype in surviving DA SN neurons in vivo. This might imply that UPS dysfunction sensitizes DA SN neurons by enhancing 'stressful pacemaking'. © 2014 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  12. Directed Evolution of Membrane Transport Using Synthetic Selections

    Bali, Anne Pihl; Genee, Hans J.; Sommer, Morten O. A.

    2018-01-01

    systems that enable selective growth of E. coli cells only if they functionally express an importer that is specific to the biosensor ligand. Using this system in a directed evolution framework, we successfully engineer the specificity of nicotinamide riboside transporters, PnuC, to accept thiamine...

  13. Neural Networks for Target Selection in Direct Marketing

    R. Potharst (Rob); U. Kaymak (Uzay); W.H.L.M. Pijls (Wim)

    2001-01-01

    textabstractPartly due to a growing interest in direct marketing, it has become an important application field for data mining. Many techniques have been applied to select the targets in commercial applications, such as statistical regression, regression trees, neural computing, fuzzy clustering

  14. Code-specific learning rules improve action selection by populations of spiking neurons.

    Friedrich, Johannes; Urbanczik, Robert; Senn, Walter

    2014-08-01

    Population coding is widely regarded as a key mechanism for achieving reliable behavioral decisions. We previously introduced reinforcement learning for population-based decision making by spiking neurons. Here we generalize population reinforcement learning to spike-based plasticity rules that take account of the postsynaptic neural code. We consider spike/no-spike, spike count and spike latency codes. The multi-valued and continuous-valued features in the postsynaptic code allow for a generalization of binary decision making to multi-valued decision making and continuous-valued action selection. We show that code-specific learning rules speed up learning both for the discrete classification and the continuous regression tasks. The suggested learning rules also speed up with increasing population size as opposed to standard reinforcement learning rules. Continuous action selection is further shown to explain realistic learning speeds in the Morris water maze. Finally, we introduce the concept of action perturbation as opposed to the classical weight- or node-perturbation as an exploration mechanism underlying reinforcement learning. Exploration in the action space greatly increases the speed of learning as compared to exploration in the neuron or weight space.

  15. Improvement of neuromuscular synaptic phenotypes without enhanced survival and motor function in severe spinal muscular atrophy mice selectively rescued in motor neurons.

    Ximena Paez-Colasante

    Full Text Available In the inherited childhood neuromuscular disease spinal muscular atrophy (SMA, lower motor neuron death and severe muscle weakness result from the reduction of the ubiquitously expressed protein survival of motor neuron (SMN. Although SMA mice recapitulate many features of the human disease, it has remained unclear if their short lifespan and motor weakness are primarily due to cell-autonomous defects in motor neurons. Using Hb9(Cre as a driver, we selectively raised SMN expression in motor neurons in conditional SMAΔ7 mice. Unlike a previous study that used choline acetyltransferase (ChAT(Cre+ as a driver on the same mice, and another report that used Hb9(Cre as a driver on a different line of conditional SMA mice, we found no improvement in survival, weight, motor behavior and presynaptic neurofilament accumulation. However, like in ChAT(Cre+ mice, we detected rescue of endplate size and mitigation of neuromuscular junction (NMJ denervation status. The rescue of endplate size occurred in the absence of an increase in myofiber size, suggesting endplate size is determined by the motor neuron in these animals. Real time-PCR showed that the expression of spinal cord SMN transcript was sharply reduced in Hb9(Cre+ SMA mice relative to ChAT(Cre+ SMA mice. This suggests that our lack of overall phenotypic improvement is most likely due to an unexpectedly poor recombination efficiency driven by Hb9(Cre . Nonetheless, the low levels of SMN were sufficient to rescue two NMJ structural parameters indicating that these motor neuron cell autonomous phenotypes are very sensitive to changes in motoneuronal SMN levels. Our results directly suggest that even those therapeutic interventions with very modest effects in raising SMN in motor neurons may provide mitigation of neuromuscular phenotypes in SMA patients.

  16. Mushroom body output neurons encode valence and guide memory-based action selection in Drosophila.

    Aso, Yoshinori; Sitaraman, Divya; Ichinose, Toshiharu; Kaun, Karla R; Vogt, Katrin; Belliart-Guérin, Ghislain; Plaçais, Pierre-Yves; Robie, Alice A; Yamagata, Nobuhiro; Schnaitmann, Christopher; Rowell, William J; Johnston, Rebecca M; Ngo, Teri-T B; Chen, Nan; Korff, Wyatt; Nitabach, Michael N; Heberlein, Ulrike; Preat, Thomas; Branson, Kristin M; Tanimoto, Hiromu; Rubin, Gerald M

    2014-12-23

    Animals discriminate stimuli, learn their predictive value and use this knowledge to modify their behavior. In Drosophila, the mushroom body (MB) plays a key role in these processes. Sensory stimuli are sparsely represented by ∼2000 Kenyon cells, which converge onto 34 output neurons (MBONs) of 21 types. We studied the role of MBONs in several associative learning tasks and in sleep regulation, revealing the extent to which information flow is segregated into distinct channels and suggesting possible roles for the multi-layered MBON network. We also show that optogenetic activation of MBONs can, depending on cell type, induce repulsion or attraction in flies. The behavioral effects of MBON perturbation are combinatorial, suggesting that the MBON ensemble collectively represents valence. We propose that local, stimulus-specific dopaminergic modulation selectively alters the balance within the MBON network for those stimuli. Our results suggest that valence encoded by the MBON ensemble biases memory-based action selection.

  17. Directional and balancing selection in human beta-defensins

    Armour John AL

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background In primates, infection is an important force driving gene evolution, and this is reflected in the importance of infectious disease in human morbidity today. The beta-defensins are key components of the innate immune system, with antimicrobial and cell signalling roles, but also reproductive functions. Here we examine evolution of beta-defensins in catarrhine primates and variation within different human populations. Results We show that five beta-defensin genes that do not show copy number variation in humans show evidence of positive selection in catarrhine primates, and identify specific codons that have been under selective pressure. Direct haplotyping of DEFB127 in humans suggests long-term balancing selection: there are two highly diverged haplotype clades carrying different variants of a codon that, in primates, is positively selected. For DEFB132, we show that extensive diversity, including a four-state amino acid polymorphism (valine, isoleucine, alanine and threonine at position 93, is present in hunter-gatherer populations, both African and non-African, but not found in samples from agricultural populations. Conclusion Some, but not all, beta-defensin genes show positive selection in catarrhine primates. There is suggestive evidence of different selective pressures on these genes in humans, but the nature of the selective pressure remains unclear and is likely to differ between populations.

  18. Directional and balancing selection in human beta-defensins.

    Hollox, Edward J; Armour, John A L

    2008-04-16

    In primates, infection is an important force driving gene evolution, and this is reflected in the importance of infectious disease in human morbidity today. The beta-defensins are key components of the innate immune system, with antimicrobial and cell signalling roles, but also reproductive functions. Here we examine evolution of beta-defensins in catarrhine primates and variation within different human populations. We show that five beta-defensin genes that do not show copy number variation in humans show evidence of positive selection in catarrhine primates, and identify specific codons that have been under selective pressure. Direct haplotyping of DEFB127 in humans suggests long-term balancing selection: there are two highly diverged haplotype clades carrying different variants of a codon that, in primates, is positively selected. For DEFB132, we show that extensive diversity, including a four-state amino acid polymorphism (valine, isoleucine, alanine and threonine at position 93), is present in hunter-gatherer populations, both African and non-African, but not found in samples from agricultural populations. Some, but not all, beta-defensin genes show positive selection in catarrhine primates. There is suggestive evidence of different selective pressures on these genes in humans, but the nature of the selective pressure remains unclear and is likely to differ between populations.

  19. Selective axonal growth of embryonic hippocampal neurons according to topographic features of various sizes and shapes

    Christine E Schmidt

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available David Y Fozdar1*, Jae Y Lee2*, Christine E Schmidt2–6, Shaochen Chen1,3–5,7,1Departments of Mechanical Engineering, 2Chemical Engineering, 3Biomedical Engineering; 4Center for Nano Molecular Science and Technology; 5Texas Materials Institute; 6Institute of Neuroscience; 7Microelectronics Research Center, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, USA *Contributed equally to this workPurpose: Understanding how surface features influence the establishment and outgrowth of the axon of developing neurons at the single cell level may aid in designing implantable scaffolds for the regeneration of damaged nerves. Past studies have shown that micropatterned ridge-groove structures not only instigate axon polarization, alignment, and extension, but are also preferred over smooth surfaces and even neurotrophic ligands.Methods: Here, we performed axonal-outgrowth competition assays using a proprietary four-quadrant topography grid to determine the capacity of various micropatterned topographies to act as stimuli sequestering axon extension. Each topography in the grid consisted of an array of microscale (approximately 2 µm or submicroscale (approximately 300 nm holes or lines with variable dimensions. Individual rat embryonic hippocampal cells were positioned either between two juxtaposing topographies or at the borders of individual topographies juxtaposing unpatterned smooth surface, cultured for 24 hours, and analyzed with respect to axonal selection using conventional imaging techniques.Results: Topography was found to influence axon formation and extension relative to smooth surface, and the distance of neurons relative to topography was found to impact whether the topography could serve as an effective cue. Neurons were also found to prefer submicroscale over microscale features and holes over lines for a given feature size.Conclusion: The results suggest that implementing physical cues of various shapes and sizes on nerve guidance conduits

  20. Directed selective-tunneling of bosons with periodically modulated interaction

    Lu, Gengbiao; Fu, Li-Bin; Hai, Wenhua; Zou, Mingliang; Guo, Yu

    2015-01-01

    We study the tunneling dynamics of bosons with periodically modulated interaction held in a triple-well potential. In high-frequency approximation, we derive a set of reduced coupled equations and the corresponding Floquet solutions are obtained. Based on the analytical results and their numerical correspondence, the directed selective-tunneling effect of a single atom is demonstrated when all bosons are prepared in middle well initially. A scheme for separating a single atom from N bosons is presented, in which the atom can be trapped in right or left well by adjusting the modulation strength. - Highlights: • The Floquet solutions in a modulating triple-well are obtained analytically. • The directed selective-tunneling effect of a single atom is demonstrated. • We present a manipulation scheme for separating a single atom from N bosons

  1. MRI and neuropathological validations of the involvement of air pollutants in cortical selective neuronal loss.

    Ejaz, Sohail; Anwar, Khaleeq; Ashraf, Muhammad

    2014-03-01

    Vehicles are a major source of air pollution, especially particulate matter (PM) pollution, throughout the world and auto-rickshaws are considered main contributors to this air pollution. PM, in addition to causing respiratory and cardiovascular disorders, has potential to gain access to the brain and could induce neuroinflammation leading to different neurological disorders. Therefore, in the current project, MRI and immunohistochemistry techniques were adopted to ascertain the neurotoxic potential of the chronic exposure to different PM generated by two-stroke auto-rickshaws (TSA), four-stroke auto-rickshaws (FSA), and aluminum sulfate (AS) solution in rats. The results highlighted that all treated groups followed a pattern of dose-dependent increase in pure cortical neuronal loss, selective neuronal loss (SNL), nuclear pyknosis, karyolysis, and karyorrhexis. Mild to moderate areas of penumbra were also observed with increase in the population of activated microglia and astrocytes, while no alteration in the intensities of T2W MRI signals was perceived in any group. When comparing the findings, TSA possess more neurotoxic potential than FSA and AS, which could be associated with increased concentration of certain elements in TSA emissions. The study concludes that chronic exposure to PM from TSA, FSA, and AS solutions produces diverse neuropathies in the brain, which may lead to different life-threatening neurological disorders like stroke, Alzheimer's, and Parkinson's disorders. Government and environmental agencies should take serious notice of this alarming situation, and immediate steps should be implemented to improve the standards of PM emissions from auto-rickshaws.

  2. Divisive normalization and neuronal oscillations in a single hierarchical framework of selective visual attention

    Jorrit Steven Montijn

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available In divisive normalization models of covert attention, spike rate modulations are commonly used as indicators of the effect of top-down attention. In addition, an increasing number of studies have shown that top-down attention increases the synchronization of neuronal oscillations as well, particularly those in gamma-band frequencies (25 to 100 Hz. Although modulations of spike rate and synchronous oscillations are not mutually exclusive as mechanisms of attention, there has thus far been little effort to integrate these concepts into a single framework of attention. Here, we aim to provide such a unified framework by expanding the normalization model of attention with a time dimension; allowing the simulation of a recently reported backward progression of attentional effects along the visual cortical hierarchy. A simple hierarchical cascade of normalization models simulating different cortical areas however leads to signal degradation and a loss of discriminability over time. To negate this degradation and ensure stable neuronal stimulus representations, we incorporate oscillatory phase entrainment into our model, a mechanism previously proposed as the communication-through-coherence (CTC hypothesis. Our analysis shows that divisive normalization and oscillation models can complement each other in a unified account of the neural mechanisms of selective visual attention. The resulting hierarchical normalization and oscillation (HNO model reproduces several additional spatial and temporal aspects of attentional modulation.

  3. Subset of Cortical Layer 6b Neurons Selectively Innervates Higher Order Thalamic Nuclei in Mice.

    Hoerder-Suabedissen, Anna; Hayashi, Shuichi; Upton, Louise; Nolan, Zachary; Casas-Torremocha, Diana; Grant, Eleanor; Viswanathan, Sarada; Kanold, Patrick O; Clasca, Francisco; Kim, Yongsoo; Molnár, Zoltán

    2018-05-01

    The thalamus receives input from 3 distinct cortical layers, but input from only 2 of these has been well characterized. We therefore investigated whether the third input, derived from layer 6b, is more similar to the projections from layer 6a or layer 5. We studied the projections of a restricted population of deep layer 6 cells ("layer 6b cells") taking advantage of the transgenic mouse Tg(Drd1a-cre)FK164Gsat/Mmucd (Drd1a-Cre), that selectively expresses Cre-recombinase in a subpopulation of layer 6b neurons across the entire cortical mantle. At P8, 18% of layer 6b neurons are labeled with Drd1a-Cre::tdTomato in somatosensory cortex (SS), and some co-express known layer 6b markers. Using Cre-dependent viral tracing, we identified topographical projections to higher order thalamic nuclei. VGluT1+ synapses formed by labeled layer 6b projections were found in posterior thalamic nucleus (Po) but not in the (pre)thalamic reticular nucleus (TRN). The lack of TRN collaterals was confirmed with single-cell tracing from SS. Transmission electron microscopy comparison of terminal varicosities from layer 5 and layer 6b axons in Po showed that L6b varicosities are markedly smaller and simpler than the majority from L5. Our results suggest that L6b projections to the thalamus are distinct from both L5 and L6a projections.

  4. Melanin-concentrating hormone directly inhibits GnRH neurons and blocks kisspeptin activation, linking energy balance to reproduction.

    Wu, Min; Dumalska, Iryna; Morozova, Elena; van den Pol, Anthony; Alreja, Meenakshi

    2009-10-06

    A link between energy balance and reproduction is critical for the survival of all species. Energy-consuming reproductive processes need to be aborted in the face of a negative energy balance, yet knowledge of the pathways mediating this link remains limited. Fasting and food restriction that inhibit fertility also upregulate the hypothalamic melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH) system that promotes feeding and decreases energy expenditure; MCH knockout mice are lean and have a higher metabolism but remain fertile. MCH also modulates sleep, drug abuse behavior, and mood, and MCH receptor antagonists are currently being developed as antiobesity and antidepressant drugs. Despite the clinical implications of MCH, the direct postsynaptic effects of MCH have never been reported in CNS neurons. Using patch-clamp recordings in brain slices from multiple lines of transgenic GFP mice, we demonstrate a strong inhibitory effect of MCH on an exclusive population of septal vGluT2-GnRH neurons that is activated by the puberty-triggering and preovulatory luteinizing hormone surge-mediating peptide, kisspeptin. MCH has no effect on kisspeptin-insensitive GnRH, vGluT2, cholinergic, or GABAergic neurons located within the same nucleus. The inhibitory effects of MCH are reproducible and nondesensitizing and are mediated via a direct postsynaptic Ba(2+)-sensitive K(+) channel mechanism involving the MCHR1 receptor. MCH immunoreactive fibers are in close proximity to vGluT2-GFP and GnRH-GFP neurons. Importantly, MCH blocks the excitatory effect of kisspeptin on vGluT2-GnRH neurons. Considering the role of MCH in regulating energy balance and of GnRH and kisspeptin in triggering puberty and maintaining fertility, MCH may provide a critical link between energy balance and reproduction directly at the level of the kisspeptin-activated vGluT2-GnRH neuron.

  5. Pulvinar neurons reveal neurobiological evidence of past selection for rapid detection of snakes.

    Van Le, Quan; Isbell, Lynne A; Matsumoto, Jumpei; Nguyen, Minh; Hori, Etsuro; Maior, Rafael S; Tomaz, Carlos; Tran, Anh Hai; Ono, Taketoshi; Nishijo, Hisao

    2013-11-19

    Snakes and their relationships with humans and other primates have attracted broad attention from multiple fields of study, but not, surprisingly, from neuroscience, despite the involvement of the visual system and strong behavioral and physiological evidence that humans and other primates can detect snakes faster than innocuous objects. Here, we report the existence of neurons in the primate medial and dorsolateral pulvinar that respond selectively to visual images of snakes. Compared with three other categories of stimuli (monkey faces, monkey hands, and geometrical shapes), snakes elicited the strongest, fastest responses, and the responses were not reduced by low spatial filtering. These findings integrate neuroscience with evolutionary biology, anthropology, psychology, herpetology, and primatology by identifying a neurobiological basis for primates' heightened visual sensitivity to snakes, and adding a crucial component to the growing evolutionary perspective that snakes have long shaped our primate lineage.

  6. Dream interpretation, affect, and the theory of neuronal group selection: Freud, Winnicott, Bion, and Modell.

    Shields, Walker

    2006-12-01

    The author uses a dream specimen as interpreted during psychoanalysis to illustrate Modell's hypothesis that Edelman's theory of neuronal group selection (TNGS) may provide a valuable neurobiological model for Freud's dynamic unconscious, imaginative processes in the mind, the retranscription of memory in psychoanalysis, and intersubjective processes in the analytic relationship. He draws parallels between the interpretation of the dream material with keen attention to affect-laden meanings in the evolving analytic relationship in the domain of psychoanalysis and the principles of Edelman's TNGS in the domain of neurobiology. The author notes how this correlation may underscore the importance of dream interpretation in psychoanalysis. He also suggests areas for further investigation in both realms based on study of their interplay.

  7. Model-Based Design of Stimulus Trains for Selective Microstimulation of Targeted Neuronal Populations

    McIntyre, Cameron

    2001-01-01

    ... that accurately reproduced the dynamic firing properties of mammalian neurons, The neuron models were coupled to a three-dimensional finite element model of the spinal cord that solved for the potentials...

  8. Neuronal oscillations with non-sinusoidal morphology produce spurious phase-to-amplitude coupling and directionality.

    Diego Lozano-Soldevilla

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Neuronal oscillations support cognitive processing. Modern views suggest that neuronal oscillations do not only reflect coordinated activity in spatially distributed networks, but also that there is interaction between the oscillations at different frequencies. For example, invasive recordings in animals and humans have found that the amplitude of fast oscillations (> 40 Hz occur non-uniformly within the phase of slower oscillations, forming the so-called cross-frequency coupling (CFC. However, the CFC patterns be influenced by features in the signal that do not relate to underlying physiological interactions. For example, CFC estimates may be sensitive to spectral correlations due to non-sinusoidal properties of the alpha band wave morphology. To investigate this issue, we performed CFC analysis using experimental and synthetic data. The former consisted in a double-blind magnetoencephalography pharmacological study in which participants received either placebo, 0.5 mg or 1.5 mg of lorazepam (LZP; GABAergic enhancer in different experimental sessions. By recording oscillatory brain activity with during rest and working memory (WM, we were able to demonstrate that posterior alpha (8 – 12 Hz phase was coupled to beta-low gamma band (20 – 45 Hz amplitude envelope during all sessions. Importantly, bicoherence values around the harmonics of the alpha frequency were similar both in magnitude and topographic distribution to the cross-frequency coherence (CFCoh values observed in the alpha-phase to beta-low gamma coupling. In addition, despite the large CFCoh we found no significant cross-frequency directionality (CFD. Critically, simulations demonstrated that a sizable part of our empirical CFCoh between alpha and beta-low gamma coupling and the lack of CFD could be explained by two-three harmonics aligned in zero phase-lag produced by the physiologically characteristic alpha asymmetry in the amplitude of the peaks relative to the troughs

  9. Electromagnetized gold nanoparticles mediate direct lineage reprogramming into induced dopamine neurons in vivo for Parkinson's disease therapy

    Yoo, Junsang; Lee, Euiyeon; Kim, Hee Young; Youn, Dong-Ho; Jung, Junghyun; Kim, Hongwon; Chang, Yujung; Lee, Wonwoong; Shin, Jaein; Baek, Soonbong; Jang, Wonhee; Jun, Won; Kim, Soochan; Hong, Jongki; Park, Hi-Joon; Lengner, Christopher J.; Moh, Sang Hyun; Kwon, Youngeun; Kim, Jongpil

    2017-10-01

    Electromagnetic fields (EMF) are physical energy fields generated by electrically charged objects, and specific ranges of EMF can influence numerous biological processes, which include the control of cell fate and plasticity. In this study, we show that electromagnetized gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) in the presence of specific EMF conditions facilitate an efficient direct lineage reprogramming to induced dopamine neurons in vitro and in vivo. Remarkably, electromagnetic stimulation leads to a specific activation of the histone acetyltransferase Brd2, which results in histone H3K27 acetylation and a robust activation of neuron-specific genes. In vivo dopaminergic neuron reprogramming by EMF stimulation of AuNPs efficiently and non-invasively alleviated symptoms in mouse Parkinson's disease models. This study provides a proof of principle for EMF-based in vivo lineage conversion as a potentially viable and safe therapeutic strategy for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders.

  10. Generation of induced neurons by direct reprogramming in the mammalian cochlea.

    Nishimura, K; Weichert, R M; Liu, W; Davis, R L; Dabdoub, A

    2014-09-05

    Primary auditory neurons (ANs) in the mammalian cochlea play a critical role in hearing as they transmit auditory information in the form of electrical signals from mechanosensory cochlear hair cells in the inner ear to the brainstem. Their progressive degeneration is associated with disease conditions, excessive noise exposure and aging. Replacement of ANs, which lack the ability to regenerate spontaneously, would have a significant impact on research and advancement in cochlear implants in addition to the amelioration of hearing impairment. The aim of this study was to induce a neuronal phenotype in endogenous non-neural cells in the cochlea, which is the essential organ of hearing. Overexpression of a neurogenic basic helix-loop-helix transcription factor, Ascl1, in the cochlear non-sensory epithelial cells induced neurons at high efficiency at embryonic, postnatal and juvenile stages. Moreover, induced neurons showed typical properties of neuron morphology, gene expression and electrophysiology. Our data indicate that Ascl1 alone or Ascl1 and NeuroD1 is sufficient to reprogram cochlear non-sensory epithelial cells into functional neurons. Generation of neurons from non-neural cells in the cochlea is an important step for the regeneration of ANs in the mature mammalian cochlea. Copyright © 2014 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Direct Synthesis of Telechelic Polyethylene by Selective Insertion Polymerization

    Jian, Zhongbao

    2016-10-14

    A single-step route to telechelic polyethylene (PE) is enabled by selective insertion polymerization. PdII-catalyzed copolymerization of ethylene and 2-vinylfuran (VF) generates α,ω-di-furan telechelic polyethylene. Orthogonally reactive exclusively in-chain anhydride groups are formed by terpolymerization with carbic anhydride. Combined experimental and theoretical DFT studies reveal the key for this direct approach to telechelics to be a match of the comonomers’ different electronics and bulk. Identified essential features of the comonomer are that it is an electron-rich olefin that forms an insertion product stabilized by an additional interaction, namely a π–η3 interaction for the case of VF.

  12. Training directionally selective motion pathways can significantly improve reading efficiency

    Lawton, Teri

    2004-06-01

    This study examined whether perceptual learning at early levels of visual processing would facilitate learning at higher levels of processing. This was examined by determining whether training the motion pathways by practicing leftright movement discrimination, as found previously, would improve the reading skills of inefficient readers significantly more than another computer game, a word discrimination game, or the reading program offered by the school. This controlled validation study found that practicing left-right movement discrimination 5-10 minutes twice a week (rapidly) for 15 weeks doubled reading fluency, and significantly improved all reading skills by more than one grade level, whereas inefficient readers in the control groups barely improved on these reading skills. In contrast to previous studies of perceptual learning, these experiments show that perceptual learning of direction discrimination significantly improved reading skills determined at higher levels of cognitive processing, thereby being generalized to a new task. The deficits in reading performance and attentional focus experienced by the person who struggles when reading are suggested to result from an information overload, resulting from timing deficits in the direction-selectivity network proposed by Russell De Valois et al. (2000), that following practice on direction discrimination goes away. This study found that practicing direction discrimination rapidly transitions the inefficient 7-year-old reader to an efficient reader.

  13. Adaptation and selective information transmission in the cricket auditory neuron AN2.

    Klaus Wimmer

    Full Text Available Sensory systems adapt their neural code to changes in the sensory environment, often on multiple time scales. Here, we report a new form of adaptation in a first-order auditory interneuron (AN2 of crickets. We characterize the response of the AN2 neuron to amplitude-modulated sound stimuli and find that adaptation shifts the stimulus-response curves toward higher stimulus intensities, with a time constant of 1.5 s for adaptation and recovery. The spike responses were thus reduced for low-intensity sounds. We then address the question whether adaptation leads to an improvement of the signal's representation and compare the experimental results with the predictions of two competing hypotheses: infomax, which predicts that information conveyed about the entire signal range should be maximized, and selective coding, which predicts that "foreground" signals should be enhanced while "background" signals should be selectively suppressed. We test how adaptation changes the input-response curve when presenting signals with two or three peaks in their amplitude distributions, for which selective coding and infomax predict conflicting changes. By means of Bayesian data analysis, we quantify the shifts of the measured response curves and also find a slight reduction of their slopes. These decreases in slopes are smaller, and the absolute response thresholds are higher than those predicted by infomax. Most remarkably, and in contrast to the infomax principle, adaptation actually reduces the amount of encoded information when considering the whole range of input signals. The response curve changes are also not consistent with the selective coding hypothesis, because the amount of information conveyed about the loudest part of the signal does not increase as predicted but remains nearly constant. Less information is transmitted about signals with lower intensity.

  14. Mushroom body output neurons encode valence and guide memory-based action selection in Drosophila

    Aso, Yoshinori; Sitaraman, Divya; Ichinose, Toshiharu; Kaun, Karla R; Vogt, Katrin; Belliart-Guérin, Ghislain; Plaçais, Pierre-Yves; Robie, Alice A; Yamagata, Nobuhiro; Schnaitmann, Christopher; Rowell, William J; Johnston, Rebecca M; Ngo, Teri-T B; Chen, Nan; Korff, Wyatt; Nitabach, Michael N; Heberlein, Ulrike; Preat, Thomas; Branson, Kristin M; Tanimoto, Hiromu; Rubin, Gerald M

    2014-01-01

    Animals discriminate stimuli, learn their predictive value and use this knowledge to modify their behavior. In Drosophila, the mushroom body (MB) plays a key role in these processes. Sensory stimuli are sparsely represented by ∼2000 Kenyon cells, which converge onto 34 output neurons (MBONs) of 21 types. We studied the role of MBONs in several associative learning tasks and in sleep regulation, revealing the extent to which information flow is segregated into distinct channels and suggesting possible roles for the multi-layered MBON network. We also show that optogenetic activation of MBONs can, depending on cell type, induce repulsion or attraction in flies. The behavioral effects of MBON perturbation are combinatorial, suggesting that the MBON ensemble collectively represents valence. We propose that local, stimulus-specific dopaminergic modulation selectively alters the balance within the MBON network for those stimuli. Our results suggest that valence encoded by the MBON ensemble biases memory-based action selection. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.04580.001 PMID:25535794

  15. Mutation directional selection sheds light on prion pathogenesis

    Shen, Liang; Ji, Hong-Fang

    2011-01-01

    Highlights: → Most pathogenic mutations possess strong directional selection, i.e., enhancing hydrophobicity or decreasing negative and increasing positive charge. → Mutation-induced changes may strengthen the interactions between PrP and facilitating factors. → The findings also have significant implications for exploring potential regions involved in the conformational transition from PrP C to PrP Sc . -- Abstract: As mutations in the PRNP gene account for human hereditary prion diseases (PrDs), it is crucial to elucidating how these mutations affect the central pathogenic conformational transition of normal cellular prion protein (PrP C ) to abnormal scrapie isoform (PrP Sc ). Many studies proposed that these pathogenic mutations may make PrP more susceptible to conformational change through altering its structure stability. By evaluating the most recent observations regarding pathogenic mutations, it was found that the pathogenic mutations do not exert a uniform effect on the thermodynamic stability of the human PrP's structure. Through analyzing the reported PrDs-related mutations, we found that 25 out of 27 mutations possess strong directional selection, i.e., enhancing hydrophobicity or decreasing negative and increasing positive charge. Based on the triggering role reported by previous studies of facilitating factors in PrP C conversion, e.g., lipid and polyanion, we proposed that the mutation-induced changes may strengthen the interaction between PrP and facilitating factors, which will accelerate PrP conversion and cause PrDs.

  16. Delay selection by spike-timing-dependent plasticity in recurrent networks of spiking neurons receiving oscillatory inputs.

    Robert R Kerr

    Full Text Available Learning rules, such as spike-timing-dependent plasticity (STDP, change the structure of networks of neurons based on the firing activity. A network level understanding of these mechanisms can help infer how the brain learns patterns and processes information. Previous studies have shown that STDP selectively potentiates feed-forward connections that have specific axonal delays, and that this underlies behavioral functions such as sound localization in the auditory brainstem of the barn owl. In this study, we investigate how STDP leads to the selective potentiation of recurrent connections with different axonal and dendritic delays during oscillatory activity. We develop analytical models of learning with additive STDP in recurrent networks driven by oscillatory inputs, and support the results using simulations with leaky integrate-and-fire neurons. Our results show selective potentiation of connections with specific axonal delays, which depended on the input frequency. In addition, we demonstrate how this can lead to a network becoming selective in the amplitude of its oscillatory response to this frequency. We extend this model of axonal delay selection within a single recurrent network in two ways. First, we show the selective potentiation of connections with a range of both axonal and dendritic delays. Second, we show axonal delay selection between multiple groups receiving out-of-phase, oscillatory inputs. We discuss the application of these models to the formation and activation of neuronal ensembles or cell assemblies in the cortex, and also to missing fundamental pitch perception in the auditory brainstem.

  17. Representation of spontaneous movement by dopaminergic neurons is cell-type selective and disrupted in parkinsonism

    Dodson, Paul D.; Dreyer, Jakob K.; Jennings, Katie Ann

    2016-01-01

    receptor expressed by striatal neurons. Importantly, in aged mice harboring a genetic burden relevant for human Parkinson's disease, the precise movement-related firing of SNc dopaminergic neurons and the resultant striatal dopamine signaling were lost. These data show that distinct dopaminergic cell types......Midbrain dopaminergic neurons are essential for appropriate voluntary movement, as epitomized by the cardinal motor impairments arising in Parkinson's disease. Understanding the basis of such motor control requires understanding how the firing of different types of dopaminergic neuron relates...... of these dopaminergic neurons can manifest as rapid and robust fluctuations in striatal dopamine concentration and receptor activity. The exact nature of the movement-related signaling in the striatum depended on the type of dopaminergic neuron providing inputs, the striatal region innervated, and the type of dopamine...

  18. Neuronal Progenitor Maintenance Requires Lactate Metabolism and PEPCK-M-Directed Cataplerosis.

    Álvarez, Zaida; Hyroššová, Petra; Perales, José Carlos; Alcántara, Soledad

    2016-03-01

    This study investigated the metabolic requirements for neuronal progenitor maintenance in vitro and in vivo by examining the metabolic adaptations that support neuronal progenitors and neural stem cells (NSCs) in their undifferentiated state. We demonstrate that neuronal progenitors are strictly dependent on lactate metabolism, while glucose induces their neuronal differentiation. Lactate signaling is not by itself capable of maintaining the progenitor phenotype. The consequences of lactate metabolism include increased mitochondrial and oxidative metabolism, with a strict reliance on cataplerosis through the mitochondrial phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (PEPCK-M) pathway to support anabolic functions, such as the production of extracellular matrix. In vivo, lactate maintains/induces populations of postnatal neuronal progenitors/NSCs in a PEPCK-M-dependent manner. Taken together, our data demonstrate that, lactate alone or together with other physical/biochemical cues maintain NSCs/progenitors with a metabolic signature that is classically found in tissues with high anabolic capacity. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  19. Gastrointestinal-projecting neurones in the dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus exhibit direct and viscerotopically organized sensitivity to orexin

    Grabauskas, Gintautas; Moises, Hylan C

    2003-01-01

    -clamp recordings orexin-A induced an inward current that reversed near the estimated equilibrium potential for K+, indicating the depolarization was due in large part to a reduction in K+ conductance. Orexins did not affect synaptically evoked excitation, but did reduce membrane excitability in a subset of gastric-projecting DMV neurones by enhancing GABA-mediated synaptic input. Lastly, although many DMV neurones responded to orexins and oxytocin with excitation, for the most part these peptides modulated excitability of distinct populations of gastric-projecting vagal motor neurones. These results indicate that orexins act preferentially within the DMV to directly excite vagal motor neurones that project to gastric fundus and corpus. In this way, release of endogenous orexins from descending hypothalamic projections into the DMV may mediate the increase in gastric acid secretion and motor activity associated with the cephalic phase of feeding. PMID:12679367

  20. Song tutoring in presinging zebra finch juveniles biases a small population of higher-order song-selective neurons toward the tutor song.

    Adret, Patrice; Meliza, C Daniel; Margoliash, Daniel

    2012-10-01

    We explored physiological changes correlated with song tutoring by recording the responses of caudal nidopallium neurons of zebra finches aged P21-P24 (days post hatching) to a broad spectrum of natural and synthetic stimuli. Those birds raised with their fathers tended to show behavioral evidence of song memorization but not of singing; thus auditory responses were not confounded by the birds' own vocalizations. In study 1, 37 of 158 neurons (23%) in 17 of 22 tutored and untutored birds were selective for only 1 of 10 stimuli comprising broadband signals, early juvenile songs and calls, female calls, and adult songs. Approximately 30% of the selective neurons (12/37 neurons in 9 birds) were selective for adult conspecific songs. All these were found in the song system nuclei HVC and paraHVC. Of 122 neurons (17 birds) in tutored birds, all of the conspecific song-selective neurons (8 neurons in 6 birds) were selective for the adult tutor song; none was selective for unfamiliar song. In study 2 with a different sampling strategy, we found that 11 of 12 song-selective neurons in 6 of 7 birds preferred the tutor song; none preferred unfamiliar or familiar conspecific songs. Most of these neurons were found in caudal lateral nidopallium (NCL) below HVC. Thus by the time a bird begins to sing, there are small numbers of tutor song-selective neurons distributed in several forebrain regions. We hypothesize that a small population of higher-order auditory neurons is innately selective for complex features of behaviorally relevant stimuli and these responses are modified by specific perceptual/social experience during development.

  1. Leptomeninges-Derived Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells and Directly Converted Neurons From Autopsy Cases With Varying Neuropathologic Backgrounds.

    Rose, Shannon E; Frankowski, Harald; Knupp, Allison; Berry, Bonnie J; Martinez, Refugio; Dinh, Stephanie Q; Bruner, Lauren T; Willis, Sherry L; Crane, Paul K; Larson, Eric B; Grabowski, Thomas; Darvas, Martin; Keene, C Dirk; Young, Jessica E

    2018-05-01

    Patient-specific stem cell technology from skin and other biopsy sources has transformed in vitro models of neurodegenerative disease, permitting interrogation of the effects of complex human genetics on neurotoxicity. However, the neuropathologic changes that underlie cognitive and behavioral phenotypes can only be determined at autopsy. To better correlate the biology of derived neurons with age-related and neurodegenerative changes, we generated leptomeningeal cell lines from well-characterized research subjects that have undergone comprehensive postmortem neuropathologic examinations. In a series of proof of principle experiments, we reprogrammed autopsy leptomeningeal cell lines to human-induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) and differentiated these into neurons. We show that leptomeningeal-derived hiPSC lines can be generated from fresh and frozen leptomeninges, are pluripotent, and retain the karyotype of the starting cell population. Additionally, neurons differentiated from these hiPSCs are functional and produce measurable Alzheimer disease-relevant analytes (Aβ and Tau). Finally, we used direct conversion protocols to transdifferentiate leptomeningeal cells to neurons. These resources allow the generation of in vitro models to test mechanistic hypotheses as well as diagnostic and therapeutic strategies in association with neuropathology, clinical and cognitive data, and biomarker studies, aiding in the study of late-onset Alzheimer disease and other age-related neurodegenerative diseases.

  2. Effects of changing canopy directional reflectance on feature selection

    Smith, J. A.; Oliver, R. E.; Kilpela, O. E.

    1973-01-01

    The use of a Monte Carlo model for generating sample directional reflectance data for two simplified target canopies at two different solar positions is reported. Successive iterations through the model permit the calculation of a mean vector and covariance matrix for canopy reflectance for varied sensor view angles. These data may then be used to calculate the divergence between the target distributions for various wavelength combinations and for these view angles. Results of a feature selection analysis indicate that different sets of wavelengths are optimum for target discrimination depending on sensor view angle and that the targets may be more easily discriminated for some scan angles than others. The time-varying behavior of these results is also pointed out.

  3. Astrocyte-neuron interaction in diphenyl ditelluride toxicity directed to the cytoskeleton

    Heimfarth, Luana; Silva Ferreira, Fernanda da; Pierozan, Paula; Mingori, Moara Rodrigues; Moreira, José Cláudio Fonseca; Batista Teixeira da Rocha, João; Pessoa-Pureur, Regina

    2017-01-01

    Highlights: • Diphenyl ditelluride is toxic to the cytoskeleton of neural cells in vitro. • Hypophosphorylation disrupts cytoskeletal homeostasis and causes cell dysfunction. • Calcium signaling underlies hypophosphorylation of intermediate filaments. • Actin disorganization causes altered astrocyte morphology. • Astrocyte cytoskeleton is more susceptible than neuronal cytoskeleton. - Abstract: Diphenylditelluride (PhTe) 2 is a neurotoxin that disrupts cytoskeletal homeostasis. We are showing that different concentrations of (PhTe) 2 caused hypophosphorylation of glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), vimentin and neurofilament subunits (NFL, NFM and NFH) and altered actin organization in co-cultured astrocytes and neurons from cerebral cortex of rats. These mechanisms were mediated by N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors without participation of either L-type voltage-dependent calcium channels (L-VDCC) or metabotropic glutamate receptors. Upregulated Ca 2+ influx downstream of NMDA receptors activated Ca 2+ -dependent protein phosphatase 2B (PP2B) causing hypophosphorylation of astrocyte and neuron IFs. Immunocytochemistry showed that hypophosphorylated intermediate filaments (IF) failed to disrupt their organization into the cytoskeleton. However, phalloidin-actin-FITC stained cytoskeleton evidenced misregulation of actin distribution, cell spreading and increased stress fibers in astrocytes. βIII tubulin staining showed that neurite meshworks are not altered by (PhTe) 2 , suggesting greater susceptibility of astrocytes than neurons to (PheTe) 2 toxicity. These findings indicate that signals leading to IF hypophosphorylation fail to disrupt the cytoskeletal IF meshwork of interacting astrocytes and neurons in vitro however astrocyte actin network seems more susceptible. Our findings support that intracellular Ca 2+ is one of the crucial signals that modulate the action of (PhTe) 2 in co-cultured astrocytes and neurons and highlights the cytoskeleton

  4. Mutation directional selection sheds light on prion pathogenesis

    Shen, Liang [Shandong Provincial Research Center for Bioinformatic Engineering and Technique, Shandong University of Technology, Zibo 255049 (China); Ji, Hong-Fang, E-mail: jhf@sdut.edu.cn [Shandong Provincial Research Center for Bioinformatic Engineering and Technique, Shandong University of Technology, Zibo 255049 (China)

    2011-07-01

    Highlights: {yields} Most pathogenic mutations possess strong directional selection, i.e., enhancing hydrophobicity or decreasing negative and increasing positive charge. {yields} Mutation-induced changes may strengthen the interactions between PrP and facilitating factors. {yields} The findings also have significant implications for exploring potential regions involved in the conformational transition from PrP{sup C} to PrP{sup Sc}. -- Abstract: As mutations in the PRNP gene account for human hereditary prion diseases (PrDs), it is crucial to elucidating how these mutations affect the central pathogenic conformational transition of normal cellular prion protein (PrP{sup C}) to abnormal scrapie isoform (PrP{sup Sc}). Many studies proposed that these pathogenic mutations may make PrP more susceptible to conformational change through altering its structure stability. By evaluating the most recent observations regarding pathogenic mutations, it was found that the pathogenic mutations do not exert a uniform effect on the thermodynamic stability of the human PrP's structure. Through analyzing the reported PrDs-related mutations, we found that 25 out of 27 mutations possess strong directional selection, i.e., enhancing hydrophobicity or decreasing negative and increasing positive charge. Based on the triggering role reported by previous studies of facilitating factors in PrP{sup C} conversion, e.g., lipid and polyanion, we proposed that the mutation-induced changes may strengthen the interaction between PrP and facilitating factors, which will accelerate PrP conversion and cause PrDs.

  5. Neurons in the thalamic reticular nucleus are selective for diverse and complex visual features

    Vishal eVaingankar

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available All visual signals the cortex receives are influenced by the perigeniculate sector of the thalamic reticular nucleus, which receives input from relay cells in the lateral geniculate and provides feedback inhibition in return. Relay cells have been studied in quantitative depth; they behave in a roughly linear fashion and have receptive fields with a stereotyped centre-surround structure. We know far less about reticular neurons. Qualitative studies indicate they simply pool ascending input to generate nonselective gain control. Yet the perigeniculate is complicated; local cells are densely interconnected and fire lengthy bursts. Thus, we employed quantitative methods to explore the perigeniculate, using relay cells as controls. By adapting methods of spike-triggered averaging and covariance analysis for bursts, we identified both first and second order features that build reticular receptive fields. The shapes of these spatiotemporal subunits varied widely; no stereotyped pattern emerged. Companion experiments showed that the shape of the first but not second order features could be explained by the overlap of On and Off inputs to a given cell. Moreover, we assessed the predictive power of the receptive field and how much information each component subunit conveyed. Linear-nonlinear models including multiple subunits performed better than those made with just one; further each subunit encoded different visual information. Model performance for reticular cells was always lesser than for relay cells, however, indicating that reticular cells process inputs nonlinearly. All told, our results suggest that the perigeniculate encodes diverse visual features to selectively modulate activity transmitted downstream

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

    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.

  7. Selection platforms for directed evolution in synthetic biology.

    Tizei, Pedro A G; Csibra, Eszter; Torres, Leticia; Pinheiro, Vitor B

    2016-08-15

    Life on Earth is incredibly diverse. Yet, underneath that diversity, there are a number of constants and highly conserved processes: all life is based on DNA and RNA; the genetic code is universal; biology is limited to a small subset of potential chemistries. A vast amount of knowledge has been accrued through describing and characterizing enzymes, biological processes and organisms. Nevertheless, much remains to be understood about the natural world. One of the goals in Synthetic Biology is to recapitulate biological complexity from simple systems made from biological molecules-gaining a deeper understanding of life in the process. Directed evolution is a powerful tool in Synthetic Biology, able to bypass gaps in knowledge and capable of engineering even the most highly conserved biological processes. It encompasses a range of methodologies to create variation in a population and to select individual variants with the desired function-be it a ligand, enzyme, pathway or even whole organisms. Here, we present some of the basic frameworks that underpin all evolution platforms and review some of the recent contributions from directed evolution to synthetic biology, in particular methods that have been used to engineer the Central Dogma and the genetic code. © 2016 The Author(s).

  8. Neurons in the thalamic reticular nucleus are selective for diverse and complex visual features

    Vaingankar, Vishal; Soto-Sanchez, Cristina; Wang, Xin; Sommer, Friedrich T.; Hirsch, Judith A.

    2012-01-01

    All visual signals the cortex receives are influenced by the perigeniculate sector (PGN) of the thalamic reticular nucleus, which receives input from relay cells in the lateral geniculate and provides feedback inhibition in return. Relay cells have been studied in quantitative depth; they behave in a roughly linear fashion and have receptive fields with a stereotyped center-surround structure. We know far less about reticular neurons. Qualitative studies indicate they simply pool ascending input to generate non-selective gain control. Yet the perigeniculate is complicated; local cells are densely interconnected and fire lengthy bursts. Thus, we employed quantitative methods to explore the perigeniculate using relay cells as controls. By adapting methods of spike-triggered averaging and covariance analysis for bursts, we identified both first and second order features that build reticular receptive fields. The shapes of these spatiotemporal subunits varied widely; no stereotyped pattern emerged. Companion experiments showed that the shape of the first but not second order features could be explained by the overlap of On and Off inputs to a given cell. Moreover, we assessed the predictive power of the receptive field and how much information each component subunit conveyed. Linear-non-linear (LN) models including multiple subunits performed better than those made with just one; further each subunit encoded different visual information. Model performance for reticular cells was always lesser than for relay cells, however, indicating that reticular cells process inputs non-linearly. All told, our results suggest that the perigeniculate encodes diverse visual features to selectively modulate activity transmitted downstream. PMID:23269915

  9. Selective deletion of cochlear hair cells causes rapid age-dependent changes in spiral ganglion and cochlear nucleus neurons.

    Tong, Ling; Strong, Melissa K; Kaur, Tejbeer; Juiz, Jose M; Oesterle, Elizabeth C; Hume, Clifford; Warchol, Mark E; Palmiter, Richard D; Rubel, Edwin W

    2015-05-20

    During nervous system development, critical periods are usually defined as early periods during which manipulations dramatically change neuronal structure or function, whereas the same manipulations in mature animals have little or no effect on the same property. Neurons in the ventral cochlear nucleus (CN) are dependent on excitatory afferent input for survival during a critical period of development. Cochlear removal in young mammals and birds results in rapid death of target neurons in the CN. Cochlear removal in older animals results in little or no neuron death. However, the extent to which hair-cell-specific afferent activity prevents neuronal death in the neonatal brain is unknown. We further explore this phenomenon using a new mouse model that allows temporal control of cochlear hair cell deletion. Hair cells express the human diphtheria toxin (DT) receptor behind the Pou4f3 promoter. Injections of DT resulted in nearly complete loss of organ of Corti hair cells within 1 week of injection regardless of the age of injection. Injection of DT did not influence surrounding supporting cells directly in the sensory epithelium or spiral ganglion neurons (SGNs). Loss of hair cells in neonates resulted in rapid and profound neuronal loss in the ventral CN, but not when hair cells were eliminated at a more mature age. In addition, normal survival of SGNs was dependent on hair cell integrity early in development and less so in mature animals. This defines a previously undocumented critical period for SGN survival. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/357878-14$15.00/0.

  10. Bi-directional astrocytic regulation of neuronal activity within a network

    Susan Yu Gordleeva

    2012-11-01

    Full Text Available The concept of a tripartite synapse holds that astrocytes can affect both the pre- and postsynaptic compartments through the Ca2+-dependent release of gliotransmitters. Because astrocytic Ca2+ transients usually last for a few seconds, we assumed that astrocytic regulation of synaptic transmission may also occur on the scale of seconds. Here, we considered the basic physiological functions of tripartite synapses and investigated astrocytic regulation at the level of neural network activity. The firing dynamics of individual neurons in a spontaneous firing network was described by the Hodgkin-Huxley model. The neurons received excitatory synaptic input driven by the Poisson spike train with variable frequency. The mean field concentration of the released neurotransmitter was used to describe the presynaptic dynamics. The amplitudes of the excitatory postsynaptic currents (PSCs obeyed the gamma distribution law. In our model, astrocytes depressed the presynaptic release and enhanced the postsynaptic currents. As a result, low frequency synaptic input was suppressed while high frequency input was amplified. The analysis of the neuron spiking frequency as an indicator of network activity revealed that tripartite synaptic transmission dramatically changed the local network operation compared to bipartite synapses. Specifically, the astrocytes supported homeostatic regulation of the network activity by increasing or decreasing firing of the neurons. Thus, the astrocyte activation may modulate a transition of neural network into bistable regime of activity with two stable firing levels and spontaneous transitions between them.

  11. Hippocampal Ghrelin-positive neurons directly project to arcuate hypothalamic and medial amygdaloid nuclei. Could they modulate food-intake?

    Russo, Cristina; Russo, Antonella; Pellitteri, Rosalia; Stanzani, Stefania

    2017-07-13

    Feeding is a process controlled by a complex of associations between external and internal stimuli. The processes that involve learning and memory seem to exert a strong control over appetite and food intake, which is modulated by a gastrointestinal hormone, Ghrelin (Ghre). Recent studies claim that Ghre is involved in cognitive and neurobiological mechanisms that underlie the conditioning of eating behaviors. The expression of Ghre increases in anticipation of food intake based on learned behaviors. The hippocampal Ghre-containing neurons neurologically influence the orexigenic hypothalamus and consequently the learned feeding behavior. The CA1 field of Ammon's horn of the hippocampus (H-CA1) constitutes the most important neural substrate to control both appetitive and ingestive behavior. It also innervates amygdala regions that in turn innervate the hypothalamus. A recent study also implies that Ghre effects on cue-potentiated feeding behavior occur, at the least, via indirect action on the amygdala. In the present study, we investigate the neural substrates through which endogenous Ghre communicates conditioned appetite and feeding behavior within the CNS. We show the existence of a neural Ghre dependent pathway whereby peripherally-derived Ghre activates H-CA1 neurons, which in turn activate Ghre-expressing hypothalamic and amygdaloid neurons to stimulate appetite and feeding behavior. To highlight this pathway, we use two fluorescent retrograde tracers (Fluoro Gold and Dil) and immunohistochemical detection of Ghre expression in the hippocampus. Triple fluorescent-labeling has determined the presence of H-CA1 Ghre-containing collateralized neurons that project to the hypothalamus and amygdala monosynaptically. We hypothesize that H-Ghre-containing neurons in H-CA1 modulate food-intake behavior through direct pathways to the arcuate hypothalamic nucleus and medial amygdaloid nucleus. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Astrocyte-neuron interaction in diphenyl ditelluride toxicity directed to the cytoskeleton.

    Heimfarth, Luana; da Silva Ferreira, Fernanda; Pierozan, Paula; Mingori, Moara Rodrigues; Moreira, José Cláudio Fonseca; da Rocha, João Batista Teixeira; Pessoa-Pureur, Regina

    2017-03-15

    Diphenylditelluride (PhTe) 2 is a neurotoxin that disrupts cytoskeletal homeostasis. We are showing that different concentrations of (PhTe) 2 caused hypophosphorylation of glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), vimentin and neurofilament subunits (NFL, NFM and NFH) and altered actin organization in co-cultured astrocytes and neurons from cerebral cortex of rats. These mechanisms were mediated by N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) receptors without participation of either L-type voltage-dependent calcium channels (L-VDCC) or metabotropic glutamate receptors. Upregulated Ca 2+ influx downstream of NMDA receptors activated Ca 2+ -dependent protein phosphatase 2B (PP2B) causing hypophosphorylation of astrocyte and neuron IFs. Immunocytochemistry showed that hypophosphorylated intermediate filaments (IF) failed to disrupt their organization into the cytoskeleton. However, phalloidin-actin-FITC stained cytoskeleton evidenced misregulation of actin distribution, cell spreading and increased stress fibers in astrocytes. βIII tubulin staining showed that neurite meshworks are not altered by (PhTe) 2 , suggesting greater susceptibility of astrocytes than neurons to (PheTe) 2 toxicity. These findings indicate that signals leading to IF hypophosphorylation fail to disrupt the cytoskeletal IF meshwork of interacting astrocytes and neurons in vitro however astrocyte actin network seems more susceptible. Our findings support that intracellular Ca 2+ is one of the crucial signals that modulate the action of (PhTe) 2 in co-cultured astrocytes and neurons and highlights the cytoskeleton as an end-point of the neurotoxicity of this compound. Cytoskeletal misregulation is associated with cell dysfunction, therefore, the understanding of the molecular mechanisms mediating the neurotoxicity of this compound is a matter of increasing interest since tellurium compounds are increasingly released in the environment. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Selective expression of KCNS3 potassium channel α-subunit in parvalbumin-containing GABA neurons in the human prefrontal cortex.

    Danko Georgiev

    Full Text Available The cognitive deficits of schizophrenia appear to be associated with altered cortical GABA neurotransmission in the subsets of inhibitory neurons that express either parvalbumin (PV or somatostatin (SST. Identification of molecular mechanisms that operate selectively in these neurons is essential for developing targeted therapeutic strategies that do not influence other cell types. Consequently, we sought to identify, in the human cortex, gene products that are expressed selectively by PV and/or SST neurons, and that might contribute to their distinctive functional properties. Based on previously reported expression patterns in the cortex of mice and humans, we selected four genes: KCNS3, LHX6, KCNAB1, and PPP1R2, encoding K(+ channel Kv9.3 modulatory α-subunit, LIM homeobox protein 6, K(+ channel Kvβ1 subunit, and protein phosphatase 1 regulatory subunit 2, respectively, and examined their colocalization with PV or SST mRNAs in the human prefrontal cortex using dual-label in situ hybridization with (35S- and digoxigenin-labeled antisense riboprobes. KCNS3 mRNA was detected in almost all PV neurons, but not in SST neurons, and PV mRNA was detected in >90% of KCNS3 mRNA-expressing neurons. LHX6 mRNA was detected in almost all PV and >90% of SST neurons, while among all LHX6 mRNA-expressing neurons 50% expressed PV mRNA and >44% expressed SST mRNA. KCNAB1 and PPP1R2 mRNAs were detected in much larger populations of cortical neurons than PV or SST neurons. These findings indicate that KCNS3 is a selective marker of PV neurons, whereas LHX6 is expressed by both PV and SST neurons. KCNS3 and LHX6 might be useful for characterizing cell-type specific molecular alterations of cortical GABA neurotransmission and for the development of novel treatments targeting PV and/or SST neurons in schizophrenia.

  14. Behavior-Dependent Activity and Synaptic Organization of Septo-hippocampal GABAergic Neurons Selectively Targeting the Hippocampal CA3 Area.

    Joshi, Abhilasha; Salib, Minas; Viney, Tim James; Dupret, David; Somogyi, Peter

    2017-12-20

    Rhythmic medial septal (MS) GABAergic input coordinates cortical theta oscillations. However, the rules of innervation of cortical cells and regions by diverse septal neurons are unknown. We report a specialized population of septal GABAergic neurons, the Teevra cells, selectively innervating the hippocampal CA3 area bypassing CA1, CA2, and the dentate gyrus. Parvalbumin-immunopositive Teevra cells show the highest rhythmicity among MS neurons and fire with short burst duration (median, 38 ms) preferentially at the trough of both CA1 theta and slow irregular oscillations, coincident with highest hippocampal excitability. Teevra cells synaptically target GABAergic axo-axonic and some CCK interneurons in restricted septo-temporal CA3 segments. The rhythmicity of their firing decreases from septal to temporal termination of individual axons. We hypothesize that Teevra neurons coordinate oscillatory activity across the septo-temporal axis, phasing the firing of specific CA3 interneurons, thereby contributing to the selection of pyramidal cell assemblies at the theta trough via disinhibition. VIDEO ABSTRACT. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Neurons in the Amygdala with Response-Selectivity for Anxiety in Two Ethologically Based Tests

    Wang, Dong V.; Wang, Fang; Liu, Jun; Zhang, Lu; Wang, Zhiru; Lin, Longnian

    2011-01-01

    The amygdala is a key area in the brain for detecting potential threats or dangers, and further mediating anxiety. However, the neuronal mechanisms of anxiety in the amygdala have not been well characterized. Here we report that in freely-behaving mice, a group of neurons in the basolateral amygdala (BLA) fires tonically under anxiety conditions in both open-field and elevated plus-maze tests. The firing patterns of these neurons displayed a characteristic slow onset and progressively increased firing rates. Specifically, these firing patterns were correlated to a gradual development of anxiety-like behaviors in the open-field test. Moreover, these neurons could be activated by any impoverished environment similar to an open-field; and introduction of both comfortable and uncomfortable stimuli temporarily suppressed the activity of these BLA neurons. Importantly, the excitability of these BLA neurons correlated well with levels of anxiety. These results demonstrate that this type of BLA neuron is likely to represent anxiety and/or emotional values of anxiety elicited by anxiogenic environmental stressors. PMID:21494567

  16. Neurons in the amygdala with response-selectivity for anxiety in two ethologically based tests.

    Dong V Wang

    Full Text Available The amygdala is a key area in the brain for detecting potential threats or dangers, and further mediating anxiety. However, the neuronal mechanisms of anxiety in the amygdala have not been well characterized. Here we report that in freely-behaving mice, a group of neurons in the basolateral amygdala (BLA fires tonically under anxiety conditions in both open-field and elevated plus-maze tests. The firing patterns of these neurons displayed a characteristic slow onset and progressively increased firing rates. Specifically, these firing patterns were correlated to a gradual development of anxiety-like behaviors in the open-field test. Moreover, these neurons could be activated by any impoverished environment similar to an open-field; and introduction of both comfortable and uncomfortable stimuli temporarily suppressed the activity of these BLA neurons. Importantly, the excitability of these BLA neurons correlated well with levels of anxiety. These results demonstrate that this type of BLA neuron is likely to represent anxiety and/or emotional values of anxiety elicited by anxiogenic environmental stressors.

  17. Propagative selection of tilted array patterns in directional solidification

    Song, Younggil; Akamatsu, Silvère; Bottin-Rousseau, Sabine; Karma, Alain

    2018-05-01

    We investigate the dynamics of tilted cellular/dendritic array patterns that form during directional solidification of a binary alloy when a preferred-growth crystal axis is misoriented with respect to the temperature gradient. In situ experimental observations and phase-field simulations in thin samples reveal the existence of a propagative source-sink mechanism of array spacing selection that operates on larger space and time scales than the competitive growth at play during the initial solidification transient. For tilted arrays, tertiary branching at the diverging edge of the sample acts as a source of new cells with a spacing that can be significantly larger than the initial average spacing. A spatial domain of large spacing then invades the sample propagatively. It thus yields a uniform spacing everywhere, selected independently of the initial conditions, except in a small region near the converging edge of the sample, which acts as a sink of cells. We propose a discrete geometrical model that describes the large-scale evolution of the spatial spacing profile based on the local dependence of the cell drift velocity on the spacing. We also derive a nonlinear advection equation that predicts the invasion velocity of the large-spacing domain, and sheds light on the fundamental nature of this process. The models also account for more complex spacing modulations produced by an irregular dynamics at the source, in good quantitative agreement with both phase-field simulations and experiments. This basic knowledge provides a theoretical basis to improve the processing of single crystals or textured polycrystals for advanced materials.

  18. Late emergence of the vibrissa direction selectivity map in the rat barrel cortex.

    Kremer, Yves; Léger, Jean-François; Goodman, Dan; Brette, Romain; Bourdieu, Laurent

    2011-07-20

    In the neocortex, neuronal selectivities for multiple sensorimotor modalities are often distributed in topographical maps thought to emerge during a restricted period in early postnatal development. Rodent barrel cortex contains a somatotopic map for vibrissa identity, but the existence of maps representing other tactile features has not been clearly demonstrated. We addressed the issue of the existence in the rat cortex of an intrabarrel map for vibrissa movement direction using in vivo two-photon imaging. We discovered that the emergence of a direction map in rat barrel cortex occurs long after all known critical periods in the somatosensory system. This map is remarkably specific, taking a pinwheel-like form centered near the barrel center and aligned to the barrel cortex somatotopy. We suggest that this map may arise from intracortical mechanisms and demonstrate by simulation that the combination of spike-timing-dependent plasticity at synapses between layer 4 and layer 2/3 and realistic pad stimulation is sufficient to produce such a map. Its late emergence long after other classical maps suggests that experience-dependent map formation and refinement continue throughout adult life.

  19. Directed differentiation of basal forebrain cholinergic neurons from human pluripotent stem cells.

    Hu, Yao; Qu, Zhuang-Yin; Cao, Shi-Ying; Li, Qi; Ma, Lixiang; Krencik, Robert; Xu, Min; Liu, Yan

    2016-06-15

    Basal forebrain cholinergic neurons (BFCNs) play critical roles in learning, memory and cognition. Dysfunction or degeneration of BFCNs may connect to neuropathology, such as Alzheimer's disease, Down's syndrome and dementia. Generation of functional BFCNs may contribute to the studies of cell-based therapy and pathogenesis that is related to learning and memory deficits. Here we describe a detail method for robust generation of BFCNs from human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) and human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs). In this method, BFCN progenitors are patterned from hESC or hiPSC-derived primitive neuroepithelial cells, with the treatment of sonic hedgehog (SHH) or combination with its agonist Purmorphamine, and by co-culturing with human astrocytes. At day 20, ∼90% hPSC-derived progenitors expressed NKX2.1, which is a transcriptional marker for MGE. Moreover, around 40% of NKX2.1+ cells co-expressed OLIG2 and ∼15% of NKX2.1+ cells co-expressed ISLET1, which are ventral markers. At day 35, ∼40% neurons robustly express ChAT, most of which are co-labeled with NKX2.1, ISLET1 and FOXG1, indicating the basal forebrain-like identity. At day 45, these neurons express mature neuronal markers MAP2, Synapsin, and VAChT. In this method, undefined conditions including genetic modification or cell-sorting are avoided. As a choice, feeder free conditions are used to avoid ingredients of animal origin. Moreover, Purmorphamine can be substituted for SHH to induce ventral progenitors effectively and economically. We provide an efficient method to generate BFCNs from multiple hPSC lines, which offers the potential application for disease modeling and pharmacological studies. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. The selective generation of acetic acid directly from synthesis gas

    Knifton, J.F.

    1986-01-01

    The authors conclude that each of the ruthenium, cobalt and iodide-containing catalyst components have very specific roles to play in the ''melt'' catalyzed conversion of synthesis gas to acetic acid. C 1 -Oxygenate formation is only observed in the presence of ruthenium carbonyls - [Ru(CO) 3 I 3 ] - is here the dominant species - and there is a direct relationship between liquid yield, ΣOAc - productivity and [Ru(CO) 3 I 3 ] - content. Controlled quantities of iodide ensure that initially formed MeOH is rapidly converted to the more reactive methyl iodide. Subsequent cobalt-catalyzed carbonylation to acetic acid may be preparatively attractive (>80% selectivity, good yields) relative to competing syntheses, where the [Co(CO) 4 ] - concentration is maximized that is, where the Co/Ru ratio is >1, the syngas feedstock is rich in CO, and the initial iodide/cobalt ratios are ca. unity. Formation of cobalt-iodide species appears to be a competing, inhibitory step in this catalysis

  1. Neuronal hyperexcitability in the ventral posterior thalamus of neuropathic rats: modality selective effects of pregabalin.

    Patel, Ryan; Dickenson, Anthony H

    2016-07-01

    Neuropathic pain represents a substantial clinical challenge; understanding the underlying neural mechanisms and back-translation of therapeutics could aid targeting of treatments more effectively. The ventral posterior thalamus (VP) is the major termination site for the spinothalamic tract and relays nociceptive activity to the somatosensory cortex; however, under neuropathic conditions, it is unclear how hyperexcitability of spinal neurons converges onto thalamic relays. This study aimed to identify neural substrates of hypersensitivity and the influence of pregabalin on central processing. In vivo electrophysiology was performed to record from VP wide dynamic range (WDR) and nociceptive-specific (NS) neurons in anesthetized spinal nerve-ligated (SNL), sham-operated, and naive rats. In neuropathic rats, WDR neurons had elevated evoked responses to low- and high-intensity punctate mechanical stimuli, dynamic brushing, and innocuous and noxious cooling, but less so to heat stimulation, of the receptive field. NS neurons in SNL rats also displayed increased responses to noxious punctate mechanical stimulation, dynamic brushing, noxious cooling, and noxious heat. Additionally, WDR, but not NS, neurons in SNL rats exhibited substantially higher rates of spontaneous firing, which may correlate with ongoing pain. The ratio of WDR-to-NS neurons was comparable between SNL and naive/sham groups, suggesting relatively few NS neurons gain sensitivity to low-intensity stimuli leading to a "WDR phenotype." After neuropathy was induced, the proportion of cold-sensitive WDR and NS neurons increased, supporting the suggestion that changes in frequency-dependent firing and population coding underlie cold hypersensitivity. In SNL rats, pregabalin inhibited mechanical and heat responses but not cold-evoked or elevated spontaneous activity. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  2. A Comparative study for striatal-direct and -indirect pathway neurons to DA depletion-induced lesion in a PD rat model.

    Zheng, Xuefeng; Wu, Jiajia; Zhu, Yaofeng; Chen, Si; Chen, Zhi; Chen, Tao; Huang, Ziyun; Wei, Jiayou; Li, Yanmei; Lei, Wanlong

    2018-04-16

    Striatal-direct and -indirect Pathway Neurons showed different vulnerability in basal ganglia disorders. Therefore, present study aimed to examine and compare characteristic changes of densities, protein and mRNA levels of soma, dendrites, and spines between striatal-direct and -indirect pathway neurons after DA depletion by using immunohistochemistry, Western blotting, real-time PCR and immunoelectron microscopy techniques. Experimental results showed that: 1) 6OHDA-induced DA depletion decreased the soma density of striatal-direct pathway neurons (SP+), but no significant changes for striatal-indirect pathway neurons (ENK+). 2) DA depletion resulted in a decline of dendrite density for both striatal-direct (D1+) and -indirect (D2+) pathway neurons, and D2+ dendritic density declined more obviously. At the ultrastructure level, the densities of D1+ and D2+ dendritic spines reduced in the 6OHDA groups compared with their control groups, but the density of D2+ dendritic spines reduced more significant than that of D1. 3) Striatal DA depletion down-regulated protein and mRNA expression levels of SP and D1, on the contrary, ENK and D2 protein and mRNA levels of indirect pathway neurons were up-regulated significantly. Present results suggested that indirect pathway neurons be more sensitive to 6OHDA-induced DA depletion. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Different corticostriatal integration in spiny projection neurons from direct and indirect pathways

    Edén Flores-Barrera

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available The striatum is the principal input structure of the basal ganglia (BG. Major glutamatergic afferents to the striatum come from the cerebral cortex and make monosynaptic contacts with medium spiny projection neurons (MSNs and interneurons. Despite differences in axonal projections, dopamine receptors expression and differences in excitability between MSNs from “direct” and “indirect” BG pathways, these neuronal classes have been thought as electrophysiologically very similar. Based on work with BAC transgenic mice, here it is shown that corticostriatal responses in D1- and D2-receptor expressing MSNs (D1- and D2-MSNs are radically different so as to establish an electrophysiological footprint that readily differentiates between them. Experiments in BAC mice allowed us to predict, with high probability (P>0.9, in rats or non-BAC mice, whether a recorded neuron, from rat or mouse, was going to be substance P or enkephalin immunoreactive. Responses are more prolonged and evoke more action potentials in D1-MSNs, while they are briefer and exhibit intrinsic autoregenerative responses in D2-MSNs. A main cause for these differences was the interaction of intrinsic properties with the inhibitory contribution in each response Inhibition always depressed corticostriatal depolarization in D2-MSNs, while it helped in sustaining prolonged depolarizations in D1-MSNs, in spite of depressing early discharge. Corticostriatal responses changed dramatically after striatal DA-depletion in 6-hydroxy-dopamine (6-OHDA lesioned animals: a response reduction was seen in SP+ MSNs whereas an enhanced response was seen in ENK+ MSNs. The end result was that differences in the responses were greatly diminished after DA depletion.

  4. Genetic trends of selection for pelt traits in Karakul sheep I. Direct ...

    Genetic trends of selection for pelt traits in Karakul sheep. I. Direct ... development in the Karakul Wereestimated with the Animal Model in four selection lines and in a control flock over ..... Selection experiments in laboratory and domestic.

  5. Caspase inhibition in select olfactory neurons restores innate attraction behavior in aged Drosophila.

    Takahiro Chihara

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Sensory and cognitive performance decline with age. Neural dysfunction caused by nerve death in senile dementia and neurodegenerative disease has been intensively studied; however, functional changes in neural circuits during the normal aging process are not well understood. Caspases are key regulators of cell death, a hallmark of age-related neurodegeneration. Using a genetic probe for caspase-3-like activity (DEVDase activity, we have mapped age-dependent neuronal changes in the adult brain throughout the lifespan of Drosophila. Spatio-temporally restricted caspase activation was observed in the antennal lobe and ellipsoid body, brain structures required for olfaction and visual place memory, respectively. We also found that caspase was activated in an age-dependent manner in specific subsets of Drosophila olfactory receptor neurons (ORNs, Or42b and Or92a neurons. These neurons are essential for mediating innate attraction to food-related odors. Furthermore, age-induced impairments of neural transmission and attraction behavior could be reversed by specific inhibition of caspase in these ORNs, indicating that caspase activation in Or42b and Or92a neurons is responsible for altering animal behavior during normal aging.

  6. Caspase inhibition in select olfactory neurons restores innate attraction behavior in aged Drosophila.

    Chihara, Takahiro; Kitabayashi, Aki; Morimoto, Michie; Takeuchi, Ken-ichi; Masuyama, Kaoru; Tonoki, Ayako; Davis, Ronald L; Wang, Jing W; Miura, Masayuki

    2014-06-01

    Sensory and cognitive performance decline with age. Neural dysfunction caused by nerve death in senile dementia and neurodegenerative disease has been intensively studied; however, functional changes in neural circuits during the normal aging process are not well understood. Caspases are key regulators of cell death, a hallmark of age-related neurodegeneration. Using a genetic probe for caspase-3-like activity (DEVDase activity), we have mapped age-dependent neuronal changes in the adult brain throughout the lifespan of Drosophila. Spatio-temporally restricted caspase activation was observed in the antennal lobe and ellipsoid body, brain structures required for olfaction and visual place memory, respectively. We also found that caspase was activated in an age-dependent manner in specific subsets of Drosophila olfactory receptor neurons (ORNs), Or42b and Or92a neurons. These neurons are essential for mediating innate attraction to food-related odors. Furthermore, age-induced impairments of neural transmission and attraction behavior could be reversed by specific inhibition of caspase in these ORNs, indicating that caspase activation in Or42b and Or92a neurons is responsible for altering animal behavior during normal aging.

  7. GABA action in immature neocortical neurons directly depends on the availability of ketone bodies.

    Rheims, Sylvain; Holmgren, Carl D; Chazal, Genevieve; Mulder, Jan; Harkany, Tibor; Zilberter, Tanya; Zilberter, Yuri

    2009-08-01

    In the early postnatal period, energy metabolism in the suckling rodent brain relies to a large extent on metabolic pathways alternate to glucose such as the utilization of ketone bodies (KBs). However, how KBs affect neuronal excitability is not known. Using recordings of single NMDA and GABA-activated channels in neocortical pyramidal cells we studied the effects of KBs on the resting membrane potential (E(m)) and reversal potential of GABA-induced anionic currents (E(GABA)), respectively. We show that during postnatal development (P3-P19) if neocortical brain slices are adequately supplied with KBs, E(m) and E(GABA) are both maintained at negative levels of about -83 and -80 mV, respectively. Conversely, a KB deficiency causes a significant depolarization of both E(m) (>5 mV) and E(GABA) (>15 mV). The KB-mediated shift in E(GABA) is largely determined by the interaction of the NKCC1 cotransporter and Cl(-)/HCO3 transporter(s). Therefore, by inducing a hyperpolarizing shift in E(m) and modulating GABA signaling mode, KBs can efficiently control the excitability of neonatal cortical neurons.

  8. Direct Induction and Functional Maturation of Forebrain GABAergic Neurons from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells

    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.

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

    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.

  10. Selective Enhancement of Synaptic Inhibition by Hypocretin (Orexin) in Rat Vagal Motor Neurons: Implications for Autonomic Regulation

    Davis, Scott F.; Williams, Kevin W.; Xu, Weiye; Glatzer, Nicholas R.; Smith, Bret N.

    2012-01-01

    The hypocretins (orexins) are hypothalamic neuropeptides implicated in feeding, arousal, and autonomic regulation. These studies were designed to determine the actions of hypocretin peptides on synaptic transmission in the dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus nerve (DMV). Whole-cell patch-clamp recordings were made from DMV neurons in transverse slices of rat brainstem. Some of the neurons were identified as gastric-related by retrograde labeling after inoculation of the stomach wall with pseudorabies virus 152, a viral label that reports enhanced green fluorescent protein. Consistent with previous findings, hypocretins caused an inward current (6–68 pA) in most neurons at holding potentials near rest. In addition, the frequency of spontaneous IPSCs was increased in a concentration-related manner (up to 477%), with little change in EPSCs. This effect was preserved in the presence of tetrodotoxin, suggesting a presynaptic site of action. Hypocretins increased the amplitude of IPSCs evoked by electrical stimulation of the nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS) but not evoked EPSCs. Hypocretin-induced increases in the frequency of IPSCs evoked by photoactivation of caged glutamate within the NTS were also observed. Identical effects of the peptides were observed in identified gastric-related and unlabeled DMV neurons. In contrast to some previous studies, which have reported primarily excitatory actions of the hypocretins in many regions of the CNS, these data support a role for hypocretin in preferentially enhancing synaptic inhibition, including inhibitory inputs arising from neurons in the NTS. These findings indicate that the hypocretins can modulate and coordinate visceral autonomic output by acting directly on central vagal circuits. PMID:12736355

  11. Selective retrograde transport of D-aspartate in spinal interneurons anc cortical neurons of rats

    Rustioni, A.; Cuenod, M.

    1982-01-01

    Retrograde labeling of neuronal elements in the brain and spinal cord has been investigated by autoradiographic techniques following injections of D-[ 3 H]aspartate (asp), [ 3 H]γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) or horseradish peroxidase (HRP) in the medulla and spinal cord of rats. Twenty-four hours after D-[ 3 H]asp injections focused upon the cuneate nucleus, autoradiographic labeling is present over fibers in the pyramidal tract, internal capsule and over layer V pyramids in the forelimb representation of the sensorimotor cortex. After [ 3 H]GABA injections in the same nucleus no labeling attributable to retrograde translocation can be detected in spinal segments, brain stem or cortex. Conversely, injections of 30% HRP in the cuneate nucleus label neurons in several brain stem nuclei, in spinal gray and in layer V of the sensorimotor cortex. D-[ 3 H]Asp injections focused on the dorsal horn at cervical segments label a fraction of perikarya of the substantia gelatinosa and a sparser population of larger neurons in laminae IV to VI for a distance of 3-5 segments above and below the injection point. No brain stem neuronal perikarya appear labeled following spinal injections of D-[ 3 H]asp although autoradiographic grains overlie pyramidal tract fibers on the side contralateral to the injection. (Auth.)

  12. Selective neuronal PTEN deletion: can we take the brakes off of growth without losing control?

    Erin A Gutilla

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The limited ability for injured adult axons to regenerate is a major cause for limited functional recovery after injury to the nervous system, motivating numerous efforts to uncover mechanisms capable of enhancing regeneration potential. One promising strategy involves deletion or knockdown of the phosphatase and tensin (PTEN gene. Conditional genetic deletion of PTEN before, immediately following, or several months after spinal cord injury enables neurons of the corticospinal tract (CST to regenerate their axons across the lesion, which is accompanied by enhanced recovery of skilled voluntary motor functions mediated by the CST. Although conditional genetic deletion or knockdown ofPTEN in neurons enables axon regeneration, PTEN is a well-known tumor suppressor and mutations of the PTEN gene disrupt brain development leading to neurological abnormalities including macrocephaly, seizures, and early mortality. The long-term consequences of manipulating PTEN in the adult nervous system, as would be done for therapeutic intervention after injury, are only now being explored. Here, we summarize evidence indicating that long-term deletion of PTEN in mature neurons does not cause evident pathology; indeed, cortical neurons that have lived without PTEN for over 1 year appear robust and healthy. Studies to date provide only a first look at potential negative consequences of PTEN deletion or knockdown, but the absence of any detectable neuropathology supports guarded optimism that interventions to enable axon regeneration after injury are achievable.

  13. Divisive normalization and neuronal oscillations in a single hierarchical framework of selective visual attention

    Montijn, J.S.; Klink, P.C.; van Wezel, R.J.A.

    2012-01-01

    Divisive normalization models of covert attention commonly use spike rate modulations as indicators of the effect of top-down attention. In addition, an increasing number of studies have shown that top-down attention increases the synchronization of neuronal oscillations as well, particularly in

  14. Downregulation of selective microRNAs in trigeminal ganglion neurons following inflammatory muscle pain

    Wei Dong

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Active regulation of gene expression in the nervous system plays an important role in the development and/or maintenance of inflammatory pain. MicroRNA (miRNA negatively regulates gene expression via posttranscriptional or transcriptional inhibition of specific genes. To explore the possible involvement of miRNA in gene regulation during inflammatory pain, we injected complete Freund's adjuvant (CFA unilaterally into the rat masseter muscle and quantified changes in neuron-specific mature miRNAs in the trigeminal ganglion (TG. Real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction revealed significant, but differential, downregulation of mature miR-10a, -29a, -98, -99a, -124a, -134, and -183 in the ipsilateral mandibular division (V3 of the TG within 4 hr after CFA. In contrast, levels of tested miRNAs did not change significantly in the contralateral V3 or the ipsilateral ophthalmic and maxillary divisions of the TG from inflamed rats, nor in the ipsilateral V3 of saline-injected animals. The downregulated miRNAs recovered differentially to a level equal to or higher than that in naive animals. Full recovery time varied with miRNA species but was at least 4 days. Expression and downregulation of some miRNAs were further confirmed by in situ hybridization of TG neurons that innervate the inflamed muscle. Although neurons of all sizes expressed these miRNAs, their signals varied between neurons. Our results indicate that miRNA species specific to neurons are quickly regulated following inflammatory muscle pain.

  15. Direct Synthesis of Telechelic Polyethylene by Selective Insertion Polymerization

    Jian, Zhongbao; Falivene, Laura; Boffa, Giusi; Sá nchez, Sheila Ortega; Caporaso, Lucia; Grassi, Alfonso; Mecking, Stefan

    2016-01-01

    A single-step route to telechelic polyethylene (PE) is enabled by selective insertion polymerization. PdII-catalyzed copolymerization of ethylene and 2-vinylfuran (VF) generates α,ω-di-furan telechelic polyethylene. Orthogonally reactive exclusively

  16. GDE2 regulates subtype-specific motor neuron generation through inhibition of Notch signaling.

    Sabharwal, Priyanka; Lee, Changhee; Park, Sungjin; Rao, Meenakshi; Sockanathan, Shanthini

    2011-09-22

    The specification of spinal interneuron and motor neuron identities initiates within progenitor cells, while motor neuron subtype diversification is regulated by hierarchical transcriptional programs implemented postmitotically. Here we find that mice lacking GDE2, a six-transmembrane protein that triggers motor neuron generation, exhibit selective losses of distinct motor neuron subtypes, specifically in defined subsets of limb-innervating motor pools that correlate with the loss of force-generating alpha motor neurons. Mechanistically, GDE2 is expressed by postmitotic motor neurons but utilizes extracellular glycerophosphodiester phosphodiesterase activity to induce motor neuron generation by inhibiting Notch signaling in neighboring motor neuron progenitors. Thus, neuronal GDE2 controls motor neuron subtype diversity through a non-cell-autonomous feedback mechanism that directly regulates progenitor cell differentiation, implying that subtype specification initiates within motor neuron progenitor populations prior to their differentiation into postmitotic motor neurons. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Supraphysiological Doses of Performance Enhancing Anabolic-Androgenic Steroids Exert Direct Toxic Effects on Neuron-like Cells

    John Robert Basile

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Anabolic-androgenic steroids (AAS are lipophilic hormones often taken in excessive quantities by athletes and bodybuilders to enhance performance and increase muscle mass. AAS exert well known toxic effects on specific cell and tissue types and organ systems. The attention that androgen abuse has received lately should be used as an opportunity to educate both athletes and the general population regarding their adverse effects. Among numerous commercially available steroid hormones, very few have been specifically tested for direct neurotoxicity. We evaluated the effects of supraphysiological doses of methandienone and 17-α-methyltestosterone on sympathetic-like neuron cells. Vitality and apoptotic effects were analyzed, and immunofluorescence staining and western blot performed. In this study, we demonstrate that exposure of supraphysiological doses of methandienone and 17-α-methyltestosterone are toxic to the neuron-like differentiated pheochromocytoma cell line PC12, as confirmed by toxicity on neurite networks responding to nerve growth factor and the modulation of the survival and apoptosis-related proteins ERK, caspase-3, poly (ADP-ribose polymerase and heat-shock protein 90. We observe, in contrast to some previous reports but in accordance with others, expression of the androgen receptor (AR in neuron-like cells, which when inhibited mitigated the toxic effects of AAS tested, suggesting that the AR could be binding these steroid hormones to induce genomic effects. We also note elevated transcription of neuritin in treated cells, a neurotropic factor likely expressed in an attempt to resist neurotoxicity. Taken together, these results demonstrate that supraphysiological exposure to the AAS methandienone and 17-α-methyltestosterone exert neurotoxic effects by an increase in the activity of the intrinsic apoptotic pathway and alterations in neurite networks.

  18. Selective retrograde labeling of cholinergic neurons with [3H]choline

    Bagnoli, P.; Beaudet, A.; Stella, M.; Cuenod, M.

    1981-01-01

    Evidence is presented which is consistent with a specific retrograde labeling of cholinergic neurons following [ 3 H]choline application in their zone of termination. [ 3 H]Choline injection in the rat hippocampus leads to perikaryal retrograde labeling in the ipsilateral medial septal nuclease and nucleus of the diagonal band, thus delineating an established cholinergic pathway, while only diffuse presumably anterograde labeling was observed in the lateral septum, the entorhinal cortex, and the opposite hippocampus. After [ 3 H]choline injection in the pigeon visual Wulst, only the ipsilateral thalamic relay, of all inputs, showed similar perikaryal retrograde labeling, an observation supporting the suggestion that at least some thalamo-Wulst neurons are cholinergic

  19. Top-down inputs enhance orientation selectivity in neurons of the primary visual cortex during perceptual learning.

    Samat Moldakarimov

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Perceptual learning has been used to probe the mechanisms of cortical plasticity in the adult brain. Feedback projections are ubiquitous in the cortex, but little is known about their role in cortical plasticity. Here we explore the hypothesis that learning visual orientation discrimination involves learning-dependent plasticity of top-down feedback inputs from higher cortical areas, serving a different function from plasticity due to changes in recurrent connections within a cortical area. In a Hodgkin-Huxley-based spiking neural network model of visual cortex, we show that modulation of feedback inputs to V1 from higher cortical areas results in shunting inhibition in V1 neurons, which changes the response properties of V1 neurons. The orientation selectivity of V1 neurons is enhanced without changing orientation preference, preserving the topographic organizations in V1. These results provide new insights to the mechanisms of plasticity in the adult brain, reconciling apparently inconsistent experiments and providing a new hypothesis for a functional role of the feedback connections.

  20. Divisive Normalization and Neuronal Oscillations in a Single Hierarchical Framework of Selective Visual Attention

    Montijn, Jorrit Steven; Klink, P. Christaan; van Wezel, Richard J. A.

    2012-01-01

    Divisive normalization models of covert attention commonly use spike rate modulations as indicators of the effect of top-down attention. In addition, an increasing number of studies have shown that top-down attention increases the synchronization of neuronal oscillations as well, particularly in gamma-band frequencies (25–100 Hz). Although modulations of spike rate and synchronous oscillations are not mutually exclusive as mechanisms of attention, there has thus far been little effort to inte...

  1. Path integration of head direction: updating a packet of neural activity at the correct speed using neuronal time constants.

    Walters, D M; Stringer, S M

    2010-07-01

    A key question in understanding the neural basis of path integration is how individual, spatially responsive, neurons may self-organize into networks that can, through learning, integrate velocity signals to update a continuous representation of location within an environment. It is of vital importance that this internal representation of position is updated at the correct speed, and in real time, to accurately reflect the motion of the animal. In this article, we present a biologically plausible model of velocity path integration of head direction that can solve this problem using neuronal time constants to effect natural time delays, over which associations can be learned through associative Hebbian learning rules. The model comprises a linked continuous attractor network and competitive network. In simulation, we show that the same model is able to learn two different speeds of rotation when implemented with two different values for the time constant, and without the need to alter any other model parameters. The proposed model could be extended to path integration of place in the environment, and path integration of spatial view.

  2. Directly Converted Human Fibroblasts Mature to Neurons and Show Long-Term Survival in Adult Rodent Hippocampus

    Natalia Avaliani

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Direct conversion of human somatic cells to induced neurons (iNs, using lineage-specific transcription factors has opened new opportunities for cell therapy in a number of neurological diseases, including epilepsy. In most severe cases of epilepsy, seizures often originate in the hippocampus, where populations of inhibitory interneurons degenerate. Thus, iNs could be of potential use to replace these lost interneurons. It is not known, however, if iNs survive and maintain functional neuronal properties for prolonged time periods in in vivo. We transplanted human fibroblast-derived iNs into the adult rat hippocampus and observed a progressive morphological differentiation, with more developed dendritic arborisation at six months as compared to one month. This was accompanied by mature electrophysiological properties and fast high amplitude action potentials at six months after transplantation. This proof-of-principle study suggests that human iNs can be developed as a candidate source for cell replacement therapy in temporal lobe epilepsy.

  3. Direct and crossed effects of somatosensory stimulation on neuronal excitability and motor performance in humans

    Veldman, M. P.; Maffiuletti, N. A.; Hallett, M.; Zijdewind, I.; Hortobagyi, T.

    2014-01-01

    This analytic review reports how prolonged periods of somatosensory electric stimulation (SES) with repetitive transcutaneous nerve stimulation can have 'direct' and 'crossed' effects on brain activation, corticospinal excitability, and motor performance. A review of 26 studies involving 315 healthy

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

    María eLlorens-Martín

    2014-05-01

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

  5. DIRECT SELECTION ON LIFE-SPAN IN DROSOPHILA-MELANOGASTER

    ZWAAN, B; BIJLSMA, R; HOEKSTRA, RE

    An important issue in the study of the evolution of aging in Drosophila melanogaster is whether decreased early fecundity is inextricably coupled with increased life span in selection experiments on age at reproduction. Here, this problem has been tackled using an experimental design in which

  6. Effect of directional selection for body size on fluctuating asymmetry ...

    In this study, we investigated whether stress caused by artificial bidirectional selection for body size has any effect on the levels of FA of different morphological traits in Drosophila ananassae. The realised heritability (h2) was higher in low-line females and high-line males, which suggests an asymmetrical response to ...

  7. Lifetime information from correlation functions selected by directional cuts

    Gelbke, C.K.

    1995-01-01

    Two-particle correlation functions provide information on the space-time characteristics of the emitting source. In many cases, ambiguities of the relative magnitudes of source radius and lifetime can be reduced by analysis of correlation functions evaluated for specific directional cuts on the relative velocity of the coincident particle pair. Information on non-spherical breakup geometries is more difficult to extract. Examples of two-proton correlation functions in which directional cuts are employed to reduce existing space-time ambiguities for the emitting system are presented. (author). 50 refs., 10 figs

  8. Selective depletion of microglial progranulin in mice is not sufficient to cause neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis or neuroinflammation.

    Petkau, Terri L; Kosior, Natalia; de Asis, Kathleen; Connolly, Colúm; Leavitt, Blair R

    2017-11-17

    Progranulin deficiency due to heterozygous null mutations in the GRN gene are a common cause of familial frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD), while homozygous loss-of-function GRN mutations are thought to be a rare cause of neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis (NCL). Aged progranulin-knockout (Grn-null) mice display highly exaggerated lipofuscinosis, microgliosis, and astrogliosis, as well as mild cell loss in specific brain regions. In the brain, progranulin is predominantly expressed in neurons and microglia, and previously, we demonstrated that neuronal-specific depletion of progranulin does not recapitulate the neuropathological phenotype of Grn-null mice. In this study, we evaluated whether selective depletion of progranulin expression in myeloid-lineage cells, including microglia, causes NCL-like neuropathology or neuroinflammation in mice. We generated mice with progranulin depleted in myeloid-lineage cells by crossing mice homozygous for a floxed progranulin allele to mice expressing Cre recombinase under control of the LyzM promotor (Lyz-cKO). Progranulin expression was reduced by approximately 50-70% in isolated microglia compared to WT levels. Lyz-cKO mice aged to 12 months did not display any increase in lipofuscin deposition, microgliosis, or astrogliosis in the four brain regions examined, though increases were observed for many of these measures in Grn-null animals. To evaluate the functional effect of reduced progranulin expression in isolated microglia, primary cultures were stimulated with controlled standard endotoxin and cytokine release was measured. While Grn-null microglia display a hyper-inflammatory phenotype, Lyz-cKO and WT microglia secreted similar levels of inflammatory cytokines. We conclude that progranulin expression from either microglia or neurons is sufficient to prevent the development of NCL-like neuropathology in mice. Furthermore, microglia that are deficient for progranulin expression but isolated from a progranulin

  9. Region-specificity of GABAA receptor mediated effects on orientation and direction selectivity in cat visual cortical area 18.

    Jirmann, Kay-Uwe; Pernberg, Joachim; Eysel, Ulf T

    2009-01-01

    The role of GABAergic inhibition in orientation and direction selectivity has been investigated with the GABA(A)-Blocker bicuculline in the cat visual cortex, and results indicated a region specific difference of functional contributions of GABAergic inhibition in areas 17 and 18. In area 17 inhibition appeared mainly involved in sculpturing orientation and direction tuning, while in area 18 inhibition seemed more closely associated with temporal receptive field properties. However, different types of stimuli were used to test areas 17 and 18 and further studies performed in area 17 suggested an important influence of the stimulus type (single light bars vs. moving gratings) on the evoked responses (transient vs. sustained) and inhibitory mechanisms (GABA(A) vs. GABA(B)) which in turn might be more decisive for the specific results than the cortical region. To insert the missing link in this chain of arguments it was necessary to study GABAergic inhibition in area 18 with moving light bars, which has not been done so far. Therefore, in the present study we investigated area 18 cells responding to oriented moving light bars with extracellular recordings and reversible microiontophoretic blockade of GABAergig inhibition with bicuculline methiodide. The majority of neurons was characterized by a pronounced orientation specificity and variable degrees of direction selectivity. GABA(A)ergic inhibition significantly influenced preferred orientation and preferred direction in area 18. During the action of bicuculline orientation tuning width increased and orientation and direction selectivity indices decreased. Our results obtained in area 18 with moving bar stimuli, although in the proportion of affected cells similar to those described in area 17, quantitatively matched the findings for direction and orientation specificity obtained with moving gratings in area 18. Accordingly, stimulus type is not decisive in area 18 and the GABA(A) dependent, inhibitory intracortical

  10. Membrane properties of striatal direct and indirect pathway neurons in mouse and rat slices and their modulation by dopamine.

    Henrike Planert

    Full Text Available D1 and D2 receptor expressing striatal medium spiny neurons (MSNs are ascribed to striatonigral ("direct" and striatopallidal ("indirect" pathways, respectively, that are believed to function antagonistically in motor control. Glutamatergic synaptic transmission onto the two types is differentially affected by Dopamine (DA, however, less is known about the effects on MSN intrinsic electrical properties. Using patch clamp recordings, we comprehensively characterized the two pathways in rats and mice, and investigated their DA modulation. We identified the direct pathway by retrograde labeling in rats, and in mice we used transgenic animals in which EGFP is expressed in D1 MSNs. MSNs were subjected to a series of current injections to pinpoint differences between the populations, and in mice also following bath application of DA. In both animal models, most electrical properties were similar, however, membrane excitability as measured by step and ramp current injections consistently differed, with direct pathway MSNs being less excitable than their counterparts. DA had opposite effects on excitability of D1 and D2 MSNs, counteracting the initial differences. Pronounced changes in AP shape were seen in D2 MSNs. In direct pathway MSNs, excitability increased across experimental conditions and parameters, and also when applying DA or the D1 agonist SKF-81297 in presence of blockers of cholinergic, GABAergic, and glutamatergic receptors. Thus, DA induced changes in excitability were D1 R mediated and intrinsic to direct pathway MSNs, and not a secondary network effect of altered synaptic transmission. DAergic modulation of intrinsic properties therefore acts in a synergistic manner with previously reported effects of DA on afferent synaptic transmission and dendritic processing, supporting the antagonistic model for direct vs. indirect striatal pathway function.

  11. Neuronal activity in primate prefrontal cortex related to goal-directed behavior during auditory working memory tasks.

    Huang, Ying; Brosch, Michael

    2016-06-01

    Prefrontal cortex (PFC) has been documented to play critical roles in goal-directed behaviors, like representing goal-relevant events and working memory (WM). However, neurophysiological evidence for such roles of PFC has been obtained mainly with visual tasks but rarely with auditory tasks. In the present study, we tested roles of PFC in auditory goal-directed behaviors by recording local field potentials in the auditory region of left ventrolateral PFC while a monkey performed auditory WM tasks. The tasks consisted of multiple events and required the monkey to change its mental states to achieve the reward. The events were auditory and visual stimuli, as well as specific actions. Mental states were engaging in the tasks and holding task-relevant information in auditory WM. We found that, although based on recordings from one hemisphere in one monkey only, PFC represented multiple events that were important for achieving reward, including auditory and visual stimuli like turning on and off an LED, as well as bar touch. The responses to auditory events depended on the tasks and on the context of the tasks. This provides support for the idea that neuronal representations in PFC are flexible and can be related to the behavioral meaning of stimuli. We also found that engaging in the tasks and holding information in auditory WM were associated with persistent changes of slow potentials, both of which are essential for auditory goal-directed behaviors. Our study, on a single hemisphere in a single monkey, reveals roles of PFC in auditory goal-directed behaviors similar to those in visual goal-directed behaviors, suggesting that functions of PFC in goal-directed behaviors are probably common across the auditory and visual modality. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled SI: Auditory working memory. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Newborn neurons in the olfactory bulb selected for long-term survival through olfactory learning are prematurely suppressed when the olfactory memory is erased.

    Sultan, Sébastien; Rey, Nolwen; Sacquet, Joelle; Mandairon, Nathalie; Didier, Anne

    2011-10-19

    A role for newborn neurons in olfactory memory has been proposed based on learning-dependent modulation of olfactory bulb neurogenesis in adults. We hypothesized that if newborn neurons support memory, then they should be suppressed by memory erasure. Using an ecological approach in mice, we showed that behaviorally breaking a previously learned odor-reward association prematurely suppressed newborn neurons selected to survive during initial learning. Furthermore, intrabulbar infusions of the caspase pan-inhibitor ZVAD (benzyloxycarbonyl-Val-Ala-Asp) during the behavioral odor-reward extinction prevented newborn neurons death and erasure of the odor-reward association. Newborn neurons thus contribute to the bulbar network plasticity underlying long-term memory.

  13. Directionality Theory and the Entropic Principle of Natural Selection

    Demetrius, Lloyd; Gundlach, Volker

    2014-01-01

    Darwinian fitness describes the capacity of an organism to appropriate resources from the environment and to convert these resources into net-offspring production. Studies of competition between related types indicate that fitness is analytically described by entropy, a statistical measure which is positively correlated with population stability, and describes the number of accessible pathways of energy flow between the individuals in the population. Directionality theory is a mathematical mo...

  14. The evolution of trade-offs under directional and correlational selection.

    Roff, Derek A; Fairbairn, Daphne J

    2012-08-01

    Using quantitative genetic theory, we develop predictions for the evolution of trade-offs in response to directional and correlational selection. We predict that directional selection favoring an increase in one trait in a trade-off will result in change in the intercept but not the slope of the trade-off function, with the mean value of the selected trait increasing and that of the correlated trait decreasing. Natural selection will generally favor an increase in some combination of trait values, which can be represented as directional selection on an index value. Such selection induces both directional and correlational selection on the component traits. Theory predicts that selection on an index value will also change the intercept but not the slope of the trade-off function but because of correlational selection, the direction of change in component traits may be in the same or opposite directions. We test these predictions using artificial selection on the well-established trade-off between fecundity and flight capability in the cricket, Gryllus firmus and compare the empirical results with a priori predictions made using genetic parameters from a separate half-sibling experiment. Our results support the predictions and illustrate the complexity of trade-off evolution when component traits are subject to both directional and correlational selection. © 2012 The Author(s). Evolution© 2012 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  15. Directionality Theory and the Entropic Principle of Natural Selection

    Lloyd A. Demetrius

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Darwinian fitness describes the capacity of an organism to appropriate resources from the environment and to convert these resources into net-offspring production. Studies of competition between related types indicate that fitness is analytically described by entropy, a statistical measure which is positively correlated with population stability, and describes the number of accessible pathways of energy flow between the individuals in the population. Directionality theory is a mathematical model of the evolutionary process based on the concept evolutionary entropy as the measure of fitness. The theory predicts that the changes which occur as a population evolves from one non-equilibrium steady state to another are described by the following directionality principle–fundamental theorem of evolution: (a an increase in evolutionary entropy when resource composition is diverse, and resource abundance constant; (b a decrease in evolutionary entropy when resource composition is singular, and resource abundance variable. Evolutionary entropy characterizes the dynamics of energy flow between the individual elements in various classes of biological networks: (a where the units are individuals parameterized by age, and their age-specific fecundity and mortality; where the units are metabolites, and the transitions are the biochemical reactions that convert substrates to products; (c where the units are social groups, and the forces are the cooperative and competitive interactions between the individual groups. % This article reviews the analytical basis of the evolutionary entropic principle, and describes applications of directionality theory to the study of evolutionary dynamics in two biological systems; (i social networks–the evolution of cooperation; (ii metabolic networks–the evolution of body size. Statistical thermodynamics is a mathematical model of macroscopic behavior in inanimate matter based on entropy, a statistical measure which

  16. Iterative Selection of Unknown Weights in Direct Weight Optimization Identification

    Xiao Xuan

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available To the direct weight optimization identification of the nonlinear system, we add some linear terms about input sequences in the former linear affine function so as to approximate the nonlinear property. To choose the two classes of unknown weights in the more linear terms, this paper derives the detailed process on how to choose these unknown weights from theoretical analysis and engineering practice, respectively, and makes sure of their key roles between the unknown weights. From the theoretical analysis, the added unknown weights’ auxiliary role can be known in the whole process of approximating the nonlinear system. From the practical analysis, we learn how to transform one complex optimization problem to its corresponding common quadratic program problem. Then, the common quadratic program problem can be solved by the basic interior point method. Finally, the efficiency and possibility of the proposed strategies can be confirmed by the simulation results.

  17. Direct effects of HIV-1 Tat on excitability and survival of primary dorsal root ganglion neurons: possible contribution to HIV-1-associated pain.

    Xianxun Chi

    Full Text Available The vast majority of people living with human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1 have pain syndrome, which has a significant impact on their quality of life. The underlying causes of HIV-1-associated pain are not likely attributable to direct viral infection of the nervous system due to the lack of evidence of neuronal infection by HIV-1. However, HIV-1 proteins are possibly involved as they have been implicated in neuronal damage and death. The current study assesses the direct effects of HIV-1 Tat, one of potent neurotoxic viral proteins released from HIV-1-infected cells, on the excitability and survival of rat primary dorsal root ganglion (DRG neurons. We demonstrated that HIV-1 Tat triggered rapid and sustained enhancement of the excitability of small-diameter rat primary DRG neurons, which was accompanied by marked reductions in the rheobase and resting membrane potential (RMP, and an increase in the resistance at threshold (R(Th. Such Tat-induced DRG hyperexcitability may be a consequence of the inhibition of cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5 activity. Tat rapidly inhibited Cdk5 kinase activity and mRNA production, and roscovitine, a well-known Cdk5 inhibitor, induced a very similar pattern of DRG hyperexcitability. Indeed, pre-application of Tat prevented roscovitine from having additional effects on the RMP and action potentials (APs of DRGs. However, Tat-mediated actions on the rheobase and R(Th were accelerated by roscovitine. These results suggest that Tat-mediated changes in DRG excitability are partly facilitated by Cdk5 inhibition. In addition, Cdk5 is most abundant in DRG neurons and participates in the regulation of pain signaling. We also demonstrated that HIV-1 Tat markedly induced apoptosis of primary DRG neurons after exposure for longer than 48 h. Together, this work indicates that HIV-1 proteins are capable of producing pain signaling through direct actions on excitability and survival of sensory neurons.

  18. A computational neural model of goal-directed utterance selection.

    Klein, Michael; Kamp, Hans; Palm, Guenther; Doya, Kenji

    2010-06-01

    It is generally agreed that much of human communication is motivated by extra-linguistic goals: we often make utterances in order to get others to do something, or to make them support our cause, or adopt our point of view, etc. However, thus far a computational foundation for this view on language use has been lacking. In this paper we propose such a foundation using Markov Decision Processes. We borrow computational components from the field of action selection and motor control, where a neurobiological basis of these components has been established. In particular, we make use of internal models (i.e., next-state transition functions defined on current state action pairs). The internal model is coupled with reinforcement learning of a value function that is used to assess the desirability of any state that utterances (as well as certain non-verbal actions) can bring about. This cognitive architecture is tested in a number of multi-agent game simulations. In these computational experiments an agent learns to predict the context-dependent effects of utterances by interacting with other agents that are already competent speakers. We show that the cognitive architecture can account for acquiring the capability of deciding when to speak in order to achieve a certain goal (instead of performing a non-verbal action or simply doing nothing), whom to address and what to say. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Neuronal Activation in the Medulla Oblongata during Selective Elicitation of the Laryngeal Adductor Response

    Ambalavanar, Ranjinidevi; Tanaka, Yasumasa; Selbie, W. Scott; Ludlow, Christy L.

    2008-01-01

    Swallow and cough are complex motor patterns elicited by rapid and intense electrical stimulation of the internal branch of the superior laryngeal nerve (ISLN). The laryngeal adductor response (LAR) includes only a laryngeal response, is elicited by single stimuli to the ISLN, and is thought to represent the brain stem pathway involved in laryngospasm. To identify which regions in the medulla are activated during elicitation of the LAR alone, single electrical stimuli were presented once every 2 s to the ISLN. Two groups of 5 cats each were studied; an experimental group with unilateral ISLN stimulation at 0.5 Hz and a surgical control group. Three additional cats were studied to evaluate whether other oral, pharyngeal or respiratory muscles were activated during ISLN stimulation eliciting LAR. We quantified up to 22 sections for each of 14 structures in the medulla to determine if regions had increased Fos-like immunoreactive neurons in the experimental group. Significant increases (p medulla. PMID:15212423

  20. Brain region specific mitophagy capacity could contribute to selective neuronal vulnerability in Parkinson's disease

    Zabel Claus

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Parkinson's disease (PD is histologically well defined by its characteristic degeneration of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra pars compacta. Remarkably, divergent PD-related mutations can generate comparable brain region specific pathologies. This indicates that some intrinsic region-specificity respecting differential neuron vulnerability exists, which codetermines the disease progression. To gain insight into the pathomechanism of PD, we investigated protein expression and protein oxidation patterns of three different brain regions in a PD mouse model, the PINK1 knockout mice (PINK1-KO, in comparison to wild type control mice. The dysfunction of PINK1 presumably affects mitochondrial turnover by disturbing mitochondrial autophagic pathways. The three brain regions investigated are the midbrain, which is the location of substantia nigra; striatum, the major efferent region of substantia nigra; and cerebral cortex, which is more distal to PD pathology. In all three regions, mitochondrial proteins responsible for energy metabolism and membrane potential were significantly altered in the PINK1-KO mice, but with very different region specific accents in terms of up/down-regulations. This suggests that disturbed mitophagy presumably induced by PINK1 knockout has heterogeneous impacts on different brain regions. Specifically, the midbrain tissue seems to be most severely hit by defective mitochondrial turnover, whereas cortex and striatum could compensate for mitophagy nonfunction by feedback stimulation of other catabolic programs. In addition, cerebral cortex tissues showed the mildest level of protein oxidation in both PINK1-KO and wild type mice, indicating either a better oxidative protection or less reactive oxygen species (ROS pressure in this brain region. Ultra-structural histological examination in normal mouse brain revealed higher incidences of mitophagy vacuoles in cerebral cortex than in striatum and substantia

  1. Direct and correlated responses to selection for total weight of lamb ...

    The estimated selection responses indicate that direct selection for TWW would be the most suitable selection criterion for improving reproductive performance in flocks with a high reproduction rate where an increase in the number of lambs would be undesirable. (South African Journal of Animal Science, 2001, 31(2): ...

  2. A Simple K-Map Based Variable Selection Scheme in the Direct ...

    A multiplexer with (n-l) data select inputs can realise directly a function of n variables. In this paper, a simple k-map based variable selection scheme is proposed such that an n variable logic function can be synthesised using a multiplexer with (n-q) data input variables and q data select variables. The procedure is based on ...

  3. The Specification of Cortical Subcerebral Projection Neurons Depends on the Direct Repression of TBR1 by CTIP1/BCL11a.

    Cánovas, José; Berndt, F Andrés; Sepúlveda, Hugo; Aguilar, Rodrigo; Veloso, Felipe A; Montecino, Martín; Oliva, Carlos; Maass, Juan C; Sierralta, Jimena; Kukuljan, Manuel

    2015-05-13

    The acquisition of distinct neuronal fates is fundamental for the function of the cerebral cortex. We find that the development of subcerebral projections from layer 5 neurons in the mouse neocortex depends on the high levels of expression of the transcription factor CTIP1; CTIP1 is coexpressed with CTIP2 in neurons that project to subcerebral targets and with SATB2 in those that project to the contralateral cortex. CTIP1 directly represses Tbr1 in layer 5, which appears as a critical step for the acquisition of the subcerebral fate. In contrast, lower levels of CTIP1 in layer 6 are required for TBR1 expression, which directs the corticothalamic fate. CTIP1 does not appear to play a critical role in the acquisition of the callosal projection fate in layer 5. These findings unravel a key step in the acquisition of cell fate for closely related corticofugal neurons and indicate that differential dosages of transcriptions factors are critical to specify different neuronal identities. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/357552-13$15.00/0.

  4. Neurons other than motor neurons in motor neuron disease.

    Ruffoli, Riccardo; Biagioni, Francesca; Busceti, Carla L; Gaglione, Anderson; Ryskalin, Larisa; Gambardella, Stefano; Frati, Alessandro; Fornai, Francesco

    2017-11-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is typically defined by a loss of motor neurons in the central nervous system. Accordingly, morphological analysis for decades considered motor neurons (in the cortex, brainstem and spinal cord) as the neuronal population selectively involved in ALS. Similarly, this was considered the pathological marker to score disease severity ex vivo both in patients and experimental models. However, the concept of non-autonomous motor neuron death was used recently to indicate the need for additional cell types to produce motor neuron death in ALS. This means that motor neuron loss occurs only when they are connected with other cell types. This concept originally emphasized the need for resident glia as well as non-resident inflammatory cells. Nowadays, the additional role of neurons other than motor neurons emerged in the scenario to induce non-autonomous motor neuron death. In fact, in ALS neurons diverse from motor neurons are involved. These cells play multiple roles in ALS: (i) they participate in the chain of events to produce motor neuron loss; (ii) they may even degenerate more than and before motor neurons. In the present manuscript evidence about multi-neuronal involvement in ALS patients and experimental models is discussed. Specific sub-classes of neurons in the whole spinal cord are reported either to degenerate or to trigger neuronal degeneration, thus portraying ALS as a whole spinal cord disorder rather than a disease affecting motor neurons solely. This is associated with a novel concept in motor neuron disease which recruits abnormal mechanisms of cell to cell communication.

  5. Fibronectin type III (FN3) modules of the neuronal cell adhesion molecule L1 interact directly with the fibroblast growth factor (FGF) receptor

    Kulahin, Nikolaj; Li, Shizhong; Hinsby, Anders Mørkeberg

    2008-01-01

    The neuronal cell adhesion molecule (CAM) L1 promotes axonal outgrowth, presumably through an interaction with the fibroblast growth factor receptor (FGFR). The present study demonstrates a direct interaction between L1 fibronectin type III (FN3) modules I-V and FGFR1 immunoglobulin (Ig) modules II...

  6. Selection of Hidden Layer Neurons and Best Training Method for FFNN in Application of Long Term Load Forecasting

    Singh, Navneet K.; Singh, Asheesh K.; Tripathy, Manoj

    2012-05-01

    For power industries electricity load forecast plays an important role for real-time control, security, optimal unit commitment, economic scheduling, maintenance, energy management, and plant structure planning etc. A new technique for long term load forecasting (LTLF) using optimized feed forward artificial neural network (FFNN) architecture is presented in this paper, which selects optimal number of neurons in the hidden layer as well as the best training method for the case study. The prediction performance of proposed technique is evaluated using mean absolute percentage error (MAPE) of Thailand private electricity consumption and forecasted data. The results obtained are compared with the results of classical auto-regressive (AR) and moving average (MA) methods. It is, in general, observed that the proposed method is prediction wise more accurate.

  7. Conditional reduction of adult born doublecortin-positive neurons reversibly impairs selective behaviours

    Lillian eGarrett

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Adult neurogenesis occurs in the adult mammalian subventricular zone (SVZ along the walls of the lateral ventricles and the subgranular zone (SGZ of the hippocampal dentate gyrus. While a burgeoning body of research implicates adult neurogenesis in olfactory bulb (OB - and hippocampal-related behaviors, the precise function continues to elude. To further assess the behavioral importance of adult neurogenesis, we herein generated a novel inducible transgenic mouse model of adult neurogenesis reduction where mice with CreERT2 under doublecortin (DCX promoter control were crossed with mice where diphtheria toxin A (DTA was driven by the Rosa26 promoter. Activation of DTA, through the administration of tamoxifen (TAM, results in a specific reduction of DCX+ immature neurons in both the hippocampal dentate gyrus and OB. We show that the decrease of DCX+ cells causes impaired social discrimination ability in both young adult (from 3 months and middle (from 10 months aged mice. Furthermore, these animals showed an age-independent altered coping behavior in the Forced Swim Test without clear changes in anxiety-related behavior. Notably, these behavior changes were reversible on repopulating the neurogenic zones with DCX+ cells on cessation of the tamoxifen treatment, demonstrating the specificity of this effect. Overall, these results support the notion that adult neurogenesis plays a role in social memory and in stress coping but not necessarily in anxiety-related behavior.

  8. Distinct neuronal coding schemes in memory revealed by selective erasure of fast synchronous synaptic transmission.

    Xu, Wei; Morishita, Wade; Buckmaster, Paul S; Pang, Zhiping P; Malenka, Robert C; Südhof, Thomas C

    2012-03-08

    Neurons encode information by firing spikes in isolation or bursts and propagate information by spike-triggered neurotransmitter release that initiates synaptic transmission. Isolated spikes trigger neurotransmitter release unreliably but with high temporal precision. In contrast, bursts of spikes trigger neurotransmission reliably (i.e., boost transmission fidelity), but the resulting synaptic responses are temporally imprecise. However, the relative physiological importance of different spike-firing modes remains unclear. Here, we show that knockdown of synaptotagmin-1, the major Ca(2+) sensor for neurotransmitter release, abrogated neurotransmission evoked by isolated spikes but only delayed, without abolishing, neurotransmission evoked by bursts of spikes. Nevertheless, knockdown of synaptotagmin-1 in the hippocampal CA1 region did not impede acquisition of recent contextual fear memories, although it did impair the precision of such memories. In contrast, knockdown of synaptotagmin-1 in the prefrontal cortex impaired all remote fear memories. These results indicate that different brain circuits and types of memory employ distinct spike-coding schemes to encode and transmit information. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Direct Conversion of Equine Adipose-Derived Stem Cells into Induced Neuronal Cells Is Enhanced in Three-Dimensional Culture.

    Petersen, Gayle F; Hilbert, Bryan J; Trope, Gareth D; Kalle, Wouter H J; Strappe, Padraig M

    2015-12-01

    The ability to culture neurons from horses may allow further investigation into equine neurological disorders. In this study, we demonstrate the generation of induced neuronal cells from equine adipose-derived stem cells (EADSCs) using a combination of lentiviral vector expression of the neuronal transcription factors Brn2, Ascl1, Myt1l (BAM) and NeuroD1 and a defined chemical induction medium, with βIII-tubulin-positive induced neuronal cells displaying a distinct neuronal morphology of rounded and compact cell bodies, extensive neurite outgrowth, and branching of processes. Furthermore, we investigated the effects of dimensionality on neuronal transdifferentiation, comparing conventional two-dimensional (2D) monolayer culture against three-dimensional (3D) culture on a porous polystyrene scaffold. Neuronal transdifferentiation was enhanced in 3D culture, with evenly distributed cells located on the surface and throughout the scaffold. Transdifferentiation efficiency was increased in 3D culture, with an increase in mean percent conversion of more than 100% compared to 2D culture. Additionally, induced neuronal cells were shown to transit through a Nestin-positive precursor state, with MAP2 and Synapsin 2 expression significantly increased in 3D culture. These findings will help to increase our understanding of equine neuropathogenesis, with prospective roles in disease modeling, drug screening, and cellular replacement for treatment of equine neurological disorders.

  10. Persistent directional selection on body size and a resolution to the paradox of stasis.

    Rollinson, Njal; Rowe, Locke

    2015-09-01

    Directional selection on size is common but often fails to result in microevolution in the wild. Similarly, macroevolutionary rates in size are low relative to the observed strength of selection in nature. We show that many estimates of selection on size have been measured on juveniles, not adults. Further, parents influence juvenile size by adjusting investment per offspring. In light of these observations, we help resolve this paradox by suggesting that the observed upward selection on size is balanced by selection against investment per offspring, resulting in little or no net selection gradient on size. We find that trade-offs between fecundity and juvenile size are common, consistent with the notion of selection against investment per offspring. We also find that median directional selection on size is positive for juveniles but no net directional selection exists for adult size. This is expected because parent-offspring conflict exists over size, and juvenile size is more strongly affected by investment per offspring than adult size. These findings provide qualitative support for the hypothesis that upward selection on size is balanced by selection against investment per offspring, where parent-offspring conflict over size is embodied in the opposing signs of the two selection gradients. © 2015 The Author(s). Evolution © 2015 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

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

    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.

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

    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.

  13. Tying up Nicotine: New Selective Competitive Antagonist of the Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors

    Petersen, Ida Nymann; Crestey, François; Jensen, Anders A

    2015-01-01

    Conformational restriction of the pyrrolidine nitrogen in nicotine by the introduction of an ethylene bridge provided a potent and selective antagonist of the α4β2-subtype of the nicotinic acetylcholine receptors. Resolution by chiral SFC, pharmacological characterization of the two enantiomers...

  14. Dual and Direction-Selective Mechanisms of Phosphate Transport by the Vesicular Glutamate Transporter

    Julia Preobraschenski

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Summary: Vesicular glutamate transporters (VGLUTs fill synaptic vesicles with glutamate and are thus essential for glutamatergic neurotransmission. However, VGLUTs were originally discovered as members of a transporter subfamily specific for inorganic phosphate (Pi. It is still unclear how VGLUTs accommodate glutamate transport coupled to an electrochemical proton gradient ΔμH+ with inversely directed Pi transport coupled to the Na+ gradient and the membrane potential. Using both functional reconstitution and heterologous expression, we show that VGLUT transports glutamate and Pi using a single substrate binding site but different coupling to cation gradients. When facing the cytoplasm, both ions are transported into synaptic vesicles in a ΔμH+-dependent fashion, with glutamate preferred over Pi. When facing the extracellular space, Pi is transported in a Na+-coupled manner, with glutamate competing for binding but at lower affinity. We conclude that VGLUTs have dual functions in both vesicle transmitter loading and Pi homeostasis within glutamatergic neurons. : Preobraschenski et al. show that the vesicular glutamate transporter functions as a bi-directional phosphate transporter that is coupled with different cations in each direction and hence may play a key role in neuronal phosphate homeostasis. Keywords: VGLUT, SLC17 family, type I Na+-dependent inorganic phosphate transporter, ATPase, proteoliposomes, hybrid vesicles, anti-VGLUT1 nanobody

  15. Testing for biases in selection on avian reproductive traits and partitioning direct and indirect selection using quantitative genetic models.

    Reed, Thomas E; Gienapp, Phillip; Visser, Marcel E

    2016-10-01

    Key life history traits such as breeding time and clutch size are frequently both heritable and under directional selection, yet many studies fail to document microevolutionary responses. One general explanation is that selection estimates are biased by the omission of correlated traits that have causal effects on fitness, but few valid tests of this exist. Here, we show, using a quantitative genetic framework and six decades of life-history data on two free-living populations of great tits Parus major, that selection estimates for egg-laying date and clutch size are relatively unbiased. Predicted responses to selection based on the Robertson-Price Identity were similar to those based on the multivariate breeder's equation (MVBE), indicating that unmeasured covarying traits were not missing from the analysis. Changing patterns of phenotypic selection on these traits (for laying date, linked to climate change) therefore reflect changing selection on breeding values, and genetic constraints appear not to limit their independent evolution. Quantitative genetic analysis of correlational data from pedigreed populations can be a valuable complement to experimental approaches to help identify whether apparent associations between traits and fitness are biased by missing traits, and to parse the roles of direct versus indirect selection across a range of environments. © 2016 The Author(s). Evolution © 2016 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  16. Modeling Directional Selectivity Using Self-Organizing Delay-Aadaptation Maps

    Tversky, Mr. Tal; Miikkulainen, Dr. Risto

    2002-01-01

    Using a delay adaptation learning rule, we model the activity-dependent development of directionally selective cells in the primary visual cortex. Based on input stimuli, a learning rule shifts delays to create synchronous arrival of spikes at cortical cells. As a result, delays become tuned creating a smooth cortical map of direction selectivity. This result demonstrates how delay adaption can serve as a powerful abstraction for modeling temporal learning in the brain.

  17. Computational Selection of Inhibitors of A-beta Aggregation and Neuronal Toxicity

    Chen, Deliang; Martin, Zane S.; Soto, Claudio; Schein, Catherine H.

    2009-01-01

    Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) is characterized by the cerebral accumulation of misfolded and aggregated amyloid-β protein (Aβ). Disease symptoms can be alleviated, in vitro and in vivo, by “β-sheet breaker” pentapeptides that reduce plaque volume. However the peptide nature of these compounds, made them biologically unstable and unable to penetrate membranes with high efficiency. The main goal of this study was to use computational methods to identify small molecule mimetics with better drug-like properties. For this purpose, the docked conformations of the active peptides were used to identify compounds with similar activities. A series of related β-sheet breaker peptides were docked to solid state NMR structures of a fibrillar form of Aβ. The lowest energy conformations of the active peptides were used to design three dimensional (3D)-pharmacophores, suitable for screening the NCI database with Unity. Small molecular weight compounds with physicochemical features in a conformation similar to the active peptides were selected, ranked by docking solubility parameters. Of 16 diverse compounds selected for experimental screening, 2 prevented and reversed Aβ aggregation at 2–3 μM concentration, as measured by Thioflavin T (ThT) fluorescence and ELISA assays. They also prevented the toxic effects of aggregated Aβ on neuroblastoma cells. Their low molecular weight and aqueous solubility makes them promising lead compounds for treating AD. PMID:19540126

  18. Direct and correlated responses to selection for total weight of lamb ...

    Unknown

    productivity and that each of these components can be used as a selection criterion, as each has a direct impact on total ewe ... of lamb weaned per ewe joined is more efficient than selection for number of lambs born, number of lambs weaned or weaning ... The estimated grazing capacity is 5.5 ha per small stock unit.

  19. A comparative study of fuzzy target selection methods in direct marketing

    Costa Sousa, da J.M.; Kaymak, U.; Madeira, S.

    2002-01-01

    Target selection in direct marketing is an important data mining problem for which fuzzy modeling can be used. The paper compares several fuzzy modeling techniques applied to target selection based on recency, frequency and monetary value measures. The comparison uses cross validation applied to

  20. Different Molecular Mechanisms Mediate Direct or Glia-Dependent Prion Protein Fragment 90-231 Neurotoxic Effects in Cerebellar Granule Neurons.

    Thellung, Stefano; Gatta, Elena; Pellistri, Francesca; Villa, Valentina; Corsaro, Alessandro; Nizzari, Mario; Robello, Mauro; Florio, Tullio

    2017-10-01

    Glia over-stimulation associates with amyloid deposition contributing to the progression of central nervous system neurodegenerative disorders. Here we analyze the molecular mechanisms mediating microglia-dependent neurotoxicity induced by prion protein (PrP)90-231, an amyloidogenic polypeptide corresponding to the protease-resistant portion of the pathological prion protein scrapie (PrP Sc ). PrP90-231 neurotoxicity is enhanced by the presence of microglia within neuronal culture, and associated to a rapid neuronal [Ca ++ ] i increase. Indeed, while in "pure" cerebellar granule neuron cultures, PrP90-231 causes a delayed intracellular Ca ++ entry mediated by the activation of NMDA receptors; when neuron and glia are co-cultured, a transient increase of [Ca ++ ] i occurs within seconds after treatment in both granule neurons and glial cells, then followed by a delayed and sustained [Ca ++ ] i raise, associated with the induction of the expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase and phagocytic NADPH oxidase. [Ca ++ ] i fast increase in neurons is dependent on the activation of multiple pathways since it is not only inhibited by the blockade of voltage-gated channel activity and NMDA receptors but also prevented by the inhibition of nitric oxide and PGE 2 release from glial cells. Thus, Ca ++ homeostasis alteration, directly induced by PrP90-231 in cerebellar granule cells, requires the activation of NMDA receptors, but is greatly enhanced by soluble molecules released by activated glia. In glia-enriched cerebellar granule cultures, the activation of inducible nitric oxide (iNOS) and NADPH oxidase represents the main mechanism of toxicity since their pharmacological inhibition prevented PrP90-231 neurotoxicity, whereas NMDA blockade by D(-)-2-amino-5-phosphonopentanoic acid is ineffective; conversely, in pure cerebellar granule cultures, NMDA blockade but not iNOS inhibition strongly reduced PrP90-231 neurotoxicity. These data indicate that amyloidogenic peptides

  1. Multiplicative Genotype-Environment Interaction as a Cause of Reversed Response to Directional Selection

    Gimelfarb, A.

    1986-01-01

    In experiments with directional selection on a quantitative character a "reversed response" to selection is occasionally observed, when selection of individuals for a higher (lower) value of the character results in a lower (higher) value of the character among their offspring. A sudden change in environments or random drift is often assumed to be responsible for this. It is demonstrated in this paper that these two causes cannot account for the reversed response at least in some of the exper...

  2. A model of directional selection applied to the evolution of drug resistance in HIV-1.

    Seoighe, Cathal; Ketwaroo, Farahnaz; Pillay, Visva; Scheffler, Konrad; Wood, Natasha; Duffet, Rodger; Zvelebil, Marketa; Martinson, Neil; McIntyre, James; Morris, Lynn; Hide, Winston

    2007-04-01

    Understanding how pathogens acquire resistance to drugs is important for the design of treatment strategies, particularly for rapidly evolving viruses such as HIV-1. Drug treatment can exert strong selective pressures and sites within targeted genes that confer resistance frequently evolve far more rapidly than the neutral rate. Rapid evolution at sites that confer resistance to drugs can be used to help elucidate the mechanisms of evolution of drug resistance and to discover or corroborate novel resistance mutations. We have implemented standard maximum likelihood methods that are used to detect diversifying selection and adapted them for use with serially sampled reverse transcriptase (RT) coding sequences isolated from a group of 300 HIV-1 subtype C-infected women before and after single-dose nevirapine (sdNVP) to prevent mother-to-child transmission. We have also extended the standard models of codon evolution for application to the detection of directional selection. Through simulation, we show that the directional selection model can provide a substantial improvement in sensitivity over models of diversifying selection. Five of the sites within the RT gene that are known to harbor mutations that confer resistance to nevirapine (NVP) strongly supported the directional selection model. There was no evidence that other mutations that are known to confer NVP resistance were selected in this cohort. The directional selection model, applied to serially sampled sequences, also had more power than the diversifying selection model to detect selection resulting from factors other than drug resistance. Because inference of selection from serial samples is unlikely to be adversely affected by recombination, the methods we describe may have general applicability to the analysis of positive selection affecting recombining coding sequences when serially sampled data are available.

  3. Acoustic Noise Alters Selective Attention Processes as Indicated by Direct Current (DC) Brain Potential Changes

    Trimmel, Karin; Schätzer, Julia; Trimmel, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Acoustic environmental noise, even of low to moderate intensity, is known to adversely affect information processing in animals and humans via attention mechanisms. In particular, facilitation and inhibition of information processing are basic functions of selective attention. Such mechanisms can be investigated by analyzing brain potentials under conditions of externally directed attention (intake of environmental information) versus internally directed attention (rejection of environmental ...

  4. Studying cerebellar circuits by remote control of selected neuronal types with GABA-A receptors

    William Wisden

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Although GABA-A receptor-mediated inhibition of cerebellar Purkinje cells by molecular layer interneurons (MLIs has been studied intensely on the cellular level, it has remained unclear how this inhibition regulates cerebellum-dependent behaviour. We have implemented two complementary approaches to investigate the function of the MLI-Purkinje cell synapse on the behavioral level. In the first approach we permanently disrupted inhibitory fast synaptic transmission at the synapse by genetically removing the postsynaptic GABA-A receptors from Purkinje cells (PC-Δγ2 mice. We found that chronic disruption of the MLI-Purkinje cell synapse strongly impaired cerebellar learning of the vestibular occular reflex (VOR, presumably by disrupting the temporal patterns of Purkinje cell activity. However, in PC-Δγ2 mice the baseline VOR reflex was only mildly affected; indeed PC-Δγ2 mice showed no ataxia or gait abnormalities suggesting that MLI control of Purkinje cell activity is either not involved in ongoing motor tasks or that the system has found a way to compensate for its loss. To investigate the latter possibility we have developed an alternative genetic technique; we made the MLI-Purkinje cell synapse selectively sensitive to rapid manipulation with the GABAA receptor modulator zolpidem (PC-γ2-swap mice. Minutes after intraperitoneal zolpidem injection, these PC-γ2-swap mice developed severe motor abnormalities, revealing a substantial contribution of the MLI-Purkinje cell synapse to real time motor control. The cell-type selective permanent knockout of synaptic GABAergic input, and the fast reversible modulation of GABAergic input at the same synapse illustrate how pursuing both strategies gives a fuller view.

  5. Norepinephrine ignites local hotspots of neuronal excitation: How arousal amplifies selectivity in perception and memory.

    Mather, Mara; Clewett, David; Sakaki, Michiko; Harley, Carolyn W

    2016-01-01

    Emotional arousal enhances perception and memory of high-priority information but impairs processing of other information. Here, we propose that, under arousal, local glutamate levels signal the current strength of a representation and interact with norepinephrine (NE) to enhance high priority representations and out-compete or suppress lower priority representations. In our "glutamate amplifies noradrenergic effects" (GANE) model, high glutamate at the site of prioritized representations increases local NE release from the locus coeruleus (LC) to generate "NE hotspots." At these NE hotspots, local glutamate and NE release are mutually enhancing and amplify activation of prioritized representations. In contrast, arousal-induced LC activity inhibits less active representations via two mechanisms: 1) Where there are hotspots, lateral inhibition is amplified; 2) Where no hotspots emerge, NE levels are only high enough to activate low-threshold inhibitory adrenoreceptors. Thus, LC activation promotes a few hotspots of excitation in the context of widespread suppression, enhancing high priority representations while suppressing the rest. Hotspots also help synchronize oscillations across neural ensembles transmitting high-priority information. Furthermore, brain structures that detect stimulus priority interact with phasic NE release to preferentially route such information through large-scale functional brain networks. A surge of NE before, during, or after encoding enhances synaptic plasticity at NE hotspots, triggering local protein synthesis processes that enhance selective memory consolidation. Together, these noradrenergic mechanisms promote selective attention and memory under arousal. GANE not only reconciles apparently contradictory findings in the emotion-cognition literature but also extends previous influential theories of LC neuromodulation by proposing specific mechanisms for how LC-NE activity increases neural gain.

  6. P1-5: Effect of Luminance Contrast on the Color Selective Responses in the Inferior Temporal Cortex Neurons of the Macaque Monkey

    Tomoyuki Namima

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Although the relationship between color signal and luminance signal is an important problem in visual perception, relatively little is known about how the luminance contrast affects the responses of color selective neurons in the visual cortex. In this study, we examined this problem in the inferior temporal (IT of the awake monkey performing a visual fixation task. Single neuron activities were recorded from the anterior and posterior color selective regions in IT cortex (AITC and PITC identified in previous studies where color selective neurons are accumulated. Color stimuli consisted of 28 stimuli that evenly distribute across the gamut of the CRT display defined on the CIE- xychromaticity diagram at two different luminance levels (5 cd/m 2or 20 cd/m 2 and 2 stimuli at white points. The background was maintained at 10 cd/m 2gray. We found that the effect of luminance contrast on the color selectivity was markedly different between AITC and PITC. When we examined the correlation between the responses to the bright stimuli and those to the dark stimuli with the same chromaticity coordinates, most AITC neurons exhibited high correlation whereas many PITC neurons showed no correlation or only weak correlation. In PITC, the effect was specifically large for neutral colors (white, gray, black and for colors with low saturation. These results indicate that the effect of luminance contrast on the color selective responses differs across different areas and suggest that the separation between color signal and luminance signal involves a higher stage of the cortical color processing.

  7. Limits to behavioral evolution: the quantitative genetics of a complex trait under directional selection.

    Careau, Vincent; Wolak, Matthew E; Carter, Patrick A; Garland, Theodore

    2013-11-01

    Replicated selection experiments provide a powerful way to study how "multiple adaptive solutions" may lead to differences in the quantitative-genetic architecture of selected traits and whether this may translate into differences in the timing at which evolutionary limits are reached. We analyze data from 31 generations (n=17,988) of selection on voluntary wheel running in house mice. The rate of initial response, timing of selection limit, and height of the plateau varied significantly between sexes and among the four selected lines. Analyses of litter size and realized selection differentials seem to rule out counterposing natural selection as a cause of the selection limits. Animal-model analyses showed that although the additive genetic variance was significantly lower in selected than control lines, both before and after the limits, the decrease was not sufficient to explain the limits. Moreover, directional selection promoted a negative covariance between additive and maternal genetic variance over the first 10 generations. These results stress the importance of replication in selection studies of higher-level traits and highlight the fact that long-term predictions of response to selection are not necessarily expected to be linear because of the variable effects of selection on additive genetic variance and maternal effects. © 2013 The Author(s). Evolution © 2013 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  8. Visual Search for Motion-Form Conjunctions: Selective Attention to Movement Direction.

    Von Mühlenen, Adrian; Müller, Hermann J

    1999-07-01

    In 2 experiments requiring visual search for conjunctions of motion and form, the authors reinvestigated whether motion-based filtering (e.g., P. McLeod, J. Driver, Z. Dienes, & J. Crisp, 1991) is direction selective and whether cuing of the target direction promotes efficient search performance. In both experiments, the authors varied the number of movement directions in the display and the predictability of the target direction. Search was less efficient when items moved in multiple (2, 3, and 4) directions as compared with just 1 direction. Furthermore, precuing of the target direction facilitated the search, even with "wrap-around" displays, relatively more when items moved in multiple directions. The authors proposed 2 principles to explain that pattern of effects: (a) interference on direction computation between items moving in different directions (e.g., N. Qian & R. A. Andersen, 1994) and (b) selective direction tuning of motion detectors involving a receptive-field contraction (cf. J. Moran & R. Desimone, 1985; S. Treue & J. H. R. Maunsell, 1996).

  9. Directional selection effects on patterns of phenotypic (co)variation in wild populations.

    Assis, A P A; Patton, J L; Hubbe, A; Marroig, G

    2016-11-30

    Phenotypic (co)variation is a prerequisite for evolutionary change, and understanding how (co)variation evolves is of crucial importance to the biological sciences. Theoretical models predict that under directional selection, phenotypic (co)variation should evolve in step with the underlying adaptive landscape, increasing the degree of correlation among co-selected traits as well as the amount of genetic variance in the direction of selection. Whether either of these outcomes occurs in natural populations is an open question and thus an important gap in evolutionary theory. Here, we documented changes in the phenotypic (co)variation structure in two separate natural populations in each of two chipmunk species (Tamias alpinus and T. speciosus) undergoing directional selection. In populations where selection was strongest (those of T. alpinus), we observed changes, at least for one population, in phenotypic (co)variation that matched theoretical expectations, namely an increase of both phenotypic integration and (co)variance in the direction of selection and a re-alignment of the major axis of variation with the selection gradient. © 2016 The Author(s).

  10. Directional enhancement of selected high-order-harmonics from intense laser irradiated blazed grating targets.

    Zhang, Guobo; Chen, Min; Liu, Feng; Yuan, Xiaohui; Weng, Suming; Zheng, Jun; Ma, Yanyun; Shao, Fuqiu; Sheng, Zhengming; Zhang, Jie

    2017-10-02

    Relativistically intense laser solid target interaction has been proved to be a promising way to generate high-order harmonics, which can be used to diagnose ultrafast phenomena. However, their emission direction and spectra still lack tunability. Based upon two-dimensional particle-in-cell simulations, we show that directional enhancement of selected high-order-harmonics can be realized using blazed grating targets. Such targets can select harmonics with frequencies being integer times of the grating frequency. Meanwhile, the radiation intensity and emission area of the harmonics are increased. The emission direction is controlled by tailoring the local blazed structure. Theoretical and electron dynamics analysis for harmonics generation, selection and directional enhancement from the interaction between multi-cycle laser and grating target are carried out. These studies will benefit the generation and application of laser plasma-based high order harmonics.

  11. Directional selection can drive the evolution of modularity in complex traits.

    Melo, Diogo; Marroig, Gabriel

    2015-01-13

    Modularity is a central concept in modern biology, providing a powerful framework for the study of living organisms on many organizational levels. Two central and related questions can be posed in regard to modularity: How does modularity appear in the first place, and what forces are responsible for keeping and/or changing modular patterns? We approached these questions using a quantitative genetics simulation framework, building on previous results obtained with bivariate systems and extending them to multivariate systems. We developed an individual-based model capable of simulating many traits controlled by many loci with variable pleiotropic relations between them, expressed in populations subject to mutation, recombination, drift, and selection. We used this model to study the problem of the emergence of modularity, and hereby show that drift and stabilizing selection are inefficient at creating modular variational structures. We also demonstrate that directional selection can have marked effects on the modular structure between traits, actively promoting a restructuring of genetic variation in the selected population and potentially facilitating the response to selection. Furthermore, we give examples of complex covariation created by simple regimes of combined directional and stabilizing selection and show that stabilizing selection is important in the maintenance of established covariation patterns. Our results are in full agreement with previous results for two-trait systems and further extend them to include scenarios of greater complexity. Finally, we discuss the evolutionary consequences of modular patterns being molded by directional selection.

  12. Distributions of Mutational Effects and the Estimation of Directional Selection in Divergent Lineages of Arabidopsis thaliana.

    Park, Briton; Rutter, Matthew T; Fenster, Charles B; Symonds, V Vaughan; Ungerer, Mark C; Townsend, Jeffrey P

    2017-08-01

    Mutations are crucial to evolution, providing the ultimate source of variation on which natural selection acts. Due to their key role, the distribution of mutational effects on quantitative traits is a key component to any inference regarding historical selection on phenotypic traits. In this paper, we expand on a previously developed test for selection that could be conducted assuming a Gaussian mutation effect distribution by developing approaches to also incorporate any of a family of heavy-tailed Laplace distributions of mutational effects. We apply the test to detect directional natural selection on five traits along the divergence of Columbia and Landsberg lineages of Arabidopsis thaliana , constituting the first test for natural selection in any organism using quantitative trait locus and mutation accumulation data to quantify the intensity of directional selection on a phenotypic trait. We demonstrate that the results of the test for selection can depend on the mutation effect distribution specified. Using the distributions exhibiting the best fit to mutation accumulation data, we infer that natural directional selection caused divergence in the rosette diameter and trichome density traits of the Columbia and Landsberg lineages. Copyright © 2017 by the Genetics Society of America.

  13. Immunomodulation-accelerated neuronal regeneration following selective rod photoreceptor cell ablation in the zebrafish retina.

    White, David T; Sengupta, Sumitra; Saxena, Meera T; Xu, Qingguo; Hanes, Justin; Ding, Ding; Ji, Hongkai; Mumm, Jeff S

    2017-05-02

    Müller glia (MG) function as inducible retinal stem cells in zebrafish, completely repairing the eye after damage. The innate immune system has recently been shown to promote tissue regeneration in which classic wound-healing responses predominate. However, regulatory roles for leukocytes during cellular regeneration-i.e., selective cell-loss paradigms akin to degenerative disease-are less well defined. To investigate possible roles innate immune cells play during retinal cell regeneration, we used intravital microscopy to visualize neutrophil, macrophage, and retinal microglia responses to induced rod photoreceptor apoptosis. Neutrophils displayed no reactivity to rod cell loss. Peripheral macrophage cells responded to rod cell loss, as evidenced by morphological transitions and increased migration, but did not enter the retina. Retinal microglia displayed multiple hallmarks of immune cell activation: increased migration, translocation to the photoreceptor cell layer, proliferation, and phagocytosis of dying cells. To test function during rod cell regeneration, we coablated microglia and rod cells or applied immune suppression and quantified the kinetics of ( i ) rod cell clearance, ( ii ) MG/progenitor cell proliferation, and ( iii ) rod cell replacement. Coablation and immune suppressants applied before cell loss caused delays in MG/progenitor proliferation rates and slowed the rate of rod cell replacement. Conversely, immune suppressants applied after cell loss had been initiated led to accelerated photoreceptor regeneration kinetics, possibly by promoting rapid resolution of an acute immune response. Our findings suggest that microglia control MG responsiveness to photoreceptor loss and support the development of immune-targeted therapeutic strategies for reversing cell loss associated with degenerative retinal conditions.

  14. Decreased chronic-stage cortical C-11-flumazenil binding after focal ischemia-reperfusion in baboons - A marker of selective neuronal loss?

    Giffard, C.; Landeau, B.; Kerrouche, N.; Young, A.R.; Giffard, C.; Landeau, B.; Kerrouche, N.; Young, A.R.; Giffard, C.; Landeau, B.; Baron, J.C.

    2008-01-01

    Background and Purpose - Although the penumbra can be saved by early reperfusion, in the rat it is consistently affected by selective neuronal loss. Mapping selective neuronal loss in the living primate would be desirable. Methods - Five young adult baboons underwent 15 O positron emission tomography for cerebral blood flow, cerebral oxygen consumption, and oxygen extraction fraction mapping at baseline and serially during and after 20-hours temporary middle cerebral artery occlusion. At approximately day 30, 11 C-flumazenil (FMZ), a potential positron emission tomography marker of selective neuronal loss, and structural magnetic resonance-based infarct mapping were obtained, and the brain was perfused-fixed. Reduced FMZ binding in non-infarcted cortical middle cerebral artery areas was searched voxel-wise, and specific binding was assessed using compartmental modeling of FMZ time-activity curves. Results - Visual inspection revealed reduced late FMZ uptake in the affected cortical territory, extending well beyond the infarct. Accordingly, the incidence of selected voxels was greater than chance, documenting mildly but significantly reduced FMZ uptake and specific binding. Serial 15 O positron emission tomography revealed moderately severe acute ischemia followed by reperfusion. Histopathology documented only mild neuronal changes in or near the affected areas. Conclusions - We document moderate but definite late FMZ binding decrements in non-infarcted cortical areas in the baboon, consistent with previous rat and human studies. These were acutely characterized by moderate ischemia followed by reperfusion, consistent with neuronal damage from ischemic or reperfusion injury in the salvaged at-risk tissue. Only mild histopathological changes subtended these FMZ alterations suggesting subtle processes such as isolated dendrite or synapse loss. Whether these changes impact on clinical outcome deserves studying because they may be targeted by specific neuro

  15. A deleterious Nav1.1 mutation selectively impairs telencephalic inhibitory neurons derived from Dravet Syndrome patients

    Sun, Yishan; Paşca, Sergiu P; Portmann, Thomas; Goold, Carleton; Worringer, Kathleen A; Guan, Wendy; Chan, Karen C; Gai, Hui; Vogt, Daniel; Chen, Ying-Jiun J; Mao, Rong; Chan, Karrie; Rubenstein, John LR; Madison, Daniel V; Hallmayer, Joachim; Froehlich-Santino, Wendy M; Bernstein, Jonathan A; Dolmetsch, Ricardo E

    2016-01-01

    Dravet Syndrome is an intractable form of childhood epilepsy associated with deleterious mutations in SCN1A, the gene encoding neuronal sodium channel Nav1.1. Earlier studies using human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) have produced mixed results regarding the importance of Nav1.1 in human inhibitory versus excitatory neurons. We studied a Nav1.1 mutation (p.S1328P) identified in a pair of twins with Dravet Syndrome and generated iPSC-derived neurons from these patients. Characterization of the mutant channel revealed a decrease in current amplitude and hypersensitivity to steady-state inactivation. We then differentiated Dravet-Syndrome and control iPSCs into telencephalic excitatory neurons or medial ganglionic eminence (MGE)-like inhibitory neurons. Dravet inhibitory neurons showed deficits in sodium currents and action potential firing, which were rescued by a Nav1.1 transgene, whereas Dravet excitatory neurons were normal. Our study identifies biophysical impairments underlying a deleterious Nav1.1 mutation and supports the hypothesis that Dravet Syndrome arises from defective inhibitory neurons. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.13073.001 PMID:27458797

  16. Clinical utility of neuronal cells directly converted from fibroblasts of patients for neuropsychiatric disorders: studies of lysosomal storage diseases and channelopathy

    Kano, Shin-ichi; Yuan, Ming; Cardarelli, Ross A.; Maegawa, Gustavo; Higurashi, Norimichi; Gaval-Cruz, Meriem; Wilson, Ashley M.; Tristan, Carlos; Kondo, Mari A.; Chen, Yian; Koga, Minori; Obie, Cassandra; Ishizuka, Koko; Seshadri, Saurav; Srivastava, Rupali; Kato, Takahiro A.; Horiuchi, Yasue; Sedlak, Thomas W.; Lee, Yohan; Rapoport, Judith L.; Hirose, Shinichi; Okano, Hideyuki; Valle, David; O'Donnell, Patricio; Sawa, Akira; Kai, Mihoko

    2015-01-01

    Methodologies for generating functional neuronal cells directly from human fibroblasts [induced neuronal (iN) cells] have been recently developed, but the research so far has only focused on technical refinements or recapitulation of known pathological phenotypes. A critical question is whether this novel technology will contribute to elucidation of novel disease mechanisms or evaluation of therapeutic strategies. Here we have addressed this question by studying Tay-Sachs disease, a representative lysosomal storage disease, and Dravet syndrome, a form of severe myoclonic epilepsy in infancy, using human iN cells with feature of immature postmitotic glutamatergic neuronal cells. In Tay-Sachs disease, we have successfully characterized canonical neuronal pathology, massive accumulation of GM2 ganglioside, and demonstrated the suitability of this novel cell culture for future drug screening. In Dravet syndrome, we have identified a novel functional phenotype that was not suggested by studies of classical mouse models and human autopsied brains. Taken together, the present study demonstrates that human iN cells are useful for translational neuroscience research to explore novel disease mechanisms and evaluate therapeutic compounds. In the future, research using human iN cells with well-characterized genomic landscape can be integrated into multidisciplinary patient-oriented research on neuropsychiatric disorders to address novel disease mechanisms and evaluate therapeutic strategies. PMID:25732146

  17. The temporal distribution of directional gradients under selection for an optimum.

    Chevin, Luis-Miguel; Haller, Benjamin C

    2014-12-01

    Temporal variation in phenotypic selection is often attributed to environmental change causing movements of the adaptive surface relating traits to fitness, but this connection is rarely established empirically. Fluctuating phenotypic selection can be measured by the variance and autocorrelation of directional selection gradients through time. However, the dynamics of these gradients depend not only on environmental changes altering the fitness surface, but also on evolution of the phenotypic distribution. Therefore, it is unclear to what extent variability in selection gradients can inform us about the underlying drivers of their fluctuations. To investigate this question, we derive the temporal distribution of directional gradients under selection for a phenotypic optimum that is either constant or fluctuates randomly in various ways in a finite population. Our analytical results, combined with population- and individual-based simulations, show that although some characteristic patterns can be distinguished, very different types of change in the optimum (including a constant optimum) can generate similar temporal distributions of selection gradients, making it difficult to infer the processes underlying apparent fluctuating selection. Analyzing changes in phenotype distributions together with changes in selection gradients should prove more useful for inferring the mechanisms underlying estimated fluctuating selection. © 2014 The Author(s). Evolution © 2014 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  18. 2-Amino-1-methyl-6-phenylimidazo[4,5-b]pyridine (PhIP) Is Selectively Toxic to Primary Dopaminergic Neurons In Vitro

    Griggs, Amy M.; Agim, Zeynep S.; Mishra, Vartika R.; Tambe, Mitali A.; Director-Myska, Alison E.; Turteltaub, Kenneth W.; McCabe, George P.; Rochet, Jean-Christophe; Cannon, Jason R.

    2014-01-01

    Parkinson's disease (PD) is the second most common neurodegenerative disease. Much data has linked the etiology of PD to a variety of environmental factors. The majority of cases are thought to arise from a combination of genetic susceptibility and environmental factors. Chronic exposures to dietary factors, including meat, have been identified as potential risk factors. Although heterocyclic amines that are produced during high-temperature meat cooking are known to be carcinogenic, their effect on the nervous system has yet to be studied in depth. In this study, we investigated neurotoxic effects of 2-amino-1-methyl-6-phenylimidazo[4,5-b]pyridine (PhIP), a highly abundant heterocyclic amine in cooked meat, in vitro. We tested toxicity of PhIP and the two major phase I metabolites, N-OH-PhIP and 4′-OH-PhIP, using primary mesencephalic cultures from rat embryos. This culture system contains both dopaminergic and nondopaminergic neurons, which allows specificity of neurotoxicity to be readily examined. We find that exposure to PhIP or N-OH-PhIP is selectively toxic to dopaminergic neurons in primary cultures, resulting in a decreased percentage of dopaminergic neurons. Neurite length is decreased in surviving dopaminergic neurons. Exposure to 4′-OH-PhIP did not produce significant neurotoxicity. PhIP treatment also increased formation of oxidative damage markers, 4-hydroxy-2-nonenal (HNE) and 3-nitrotyrosine in dopaminergic neurons. Pretreatment with N-acetylcysteine was protective. Finally, treatment with blueberry extract, a dietary factor with known antioxidant and other protective mechanisms, prevented PhIP-induced toxicity. Collectively, our study suggests, for the first time, that PhIP is selectively toxic to dopaminergic neurons likely through inducing oxidative stress. PMID:24718704

  19. Selection Finder (SelFi: A computational metabolic engineering tool to enable directed evolution of enzymes

    Neda Hassanpour

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Directed evolution of enzymes consists of an iterative process of creating mutant libraries and choosing desired phenotypes through screening or selection until the enzymatic activity reaches a desired goal. The biggest challenge in directed enzyme evolution is identifying high-throughput screens or selections to isolate the variant(s with the desired property. We present in this paper a computational metabolic engineering framework, Selection Finder (SelFi, to construct a selection pathway from a desired enzymatic product to a cellular host and to couple the pathway with cell survival. We applied SelFi to construct selection pathways for four enzymes and their desired enzymatic products xylitol, D-ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate, methanol, and aniline. Two of the selection pathways identified by SelFi were previously experimentally validated for engineering Xylose Reductase and RuBisCO. Importantly, SelFi advances directed evolution of enzymes as there is currently no known generalized strategies or computational techniques for identifying high-throughput selections for engineering enzymes.

  20. Evolvability Search: Directly Selecting for Evolvability in order to Study and Produce It

    Mengistu, Henok; Lehman, Joel Anthony; Clune, Jeff

    2016-01-01

    of evolvable digital phenotypes. Although some types of selection in evolutionary computation indirectly encourage evolvability, one unexplored possibility is to directly select for evolvability. To do so, we estimate an individual's future potential for diversity by calculating the behavioral diversity of its...... immediate offspring, and select organisms with increased offspring variation. While the technique is computationally expensive, we hypothesized that direct selection would better encourage evolvability than indirect methods. Experiments in two evolutionary robotics domains confirm this hypothesis: in both...... domains, such Evolvability Search produces solutions with higher evolvability than those produced with Novelty Search or traditional objective-based search algorithms. Further experiments demonstrate that the higher evolvability produced by Evolvability Search in a training environment also generalizes...

  1. Traditional Amerindian cultivators combine directional and ideotypic selection for sustainable management of cassava genetic diversity.

    Duputié, A; Massol, F; David, P; Haxaire, C; McKey, D

    2009-06-01

    Plant domestication provides striking examples of rapid evolution. Yet, it involves more complex processes than plain directional selection. Understanding the dynamics of diversity in traditional agroecosystems is both a fundamental goal in evolutionary biology and a practical goal in conservation. We studied how Amerindian cultivators maintain dynamically evolving gene pools in cassava. Farmers purposely maintain diversity in the form of phenotypically distinct, clonally propagated landraces. Landrace gene pools are continuously renewed by incorporating seedlings issued from spontaneous sexual reproduction. This poses two problems: agronomic quality may decrease because some seedlings are inbred, and landrace identity may be progressively lost through the incorporation of unrelated seedlings. Using a large microsatellite dataset, we show that farmers solve these problems by applying two kinds of selection: directional selection against inbred genotypes, and counter-selection of off-type phenotypes, which maintains high intra-landrace relatedness. Thus, cultural elements such as ideotypes (a representation of the ideal phenotype of a landrace) can shape genetic diversity.

  2. Efficient adenoviral vector directed expression of a foreign gene to neurons and sustentacular cells in the mouse olfactory neuroepithelium

    Gispen, W.H.; Holtmaat, A.J.G.D.; Hermens, W.T.J.M.C.; Oestreicher, A.B.; Kaplitt, M.G.; Verhaagen, J.

    1996-01-01

    Replication deficient recombinant adenoviral vectors are efficient gene transfer agents for postmitotic cells, including neurons and glial cells. In this paper we have examined the effectiveness of adenoviral vector-mediated gene transfer to the olfactory epithelium of adult mice. We show that

  3. Efficient adenoviral vector-directed expression of a foreign gene to neurons and sustentacular cells in the mouse olfactory neuroepithelium

    Holtmaat, Anthony J D G; Hermens, W.T.J.M.C.; Oestreicher, A B; Gispen, Willem Hendrik; Kaplitt, M G; Verhaagen, J

    1996-01-01

    Replication deficient recombinant adenoviral vectors are efficient gene transfer agents for postmitotic cells, including neurons and glial cells. In this paper we have examined the effectiveness of adenoviral vector-mediated gene transfer to the olfactory epithelium of adult mice. We show that

  4. Microglial Janus kinase/signal transduction and activator of transcription 3 pathway activity directly impacts astrocyte and spinal neuron characteristics

    Molet, J.; Mauborgne, A.; Diallo, Michael; Armand, V.; Geny, D.; Villanueva, L.; Boucher, Y.; Pohl, M.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 136, č. 1 (2016), s. 133-147 ISSN 0022-3042 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) EE2.3.30.0025 Institutional support: RVO:67985823 Keywords : astrocytes * cell plasticity * JAK/STAT3 pathway * microglia conditioned media * spinal cord neurons Subject RIV: FH - Neurology Impact factor: 4.083, year: 2016

  5. Dynamic selection of ship responses for estimation of on-site directional wave spectra

    Andersen, Ingrid Marie Vincent; Storhaug, Gaute

    2012-01-01

    -estimate of the wave spectrum is suggested. The selection method needs to be robust for what reason a parameterised uni-directional, two-parameter wave spectrum is treated. The parameters included are the zero up-crossing period, the significant wave height and the main wave direction relative to the ship’s heading...... with the best overall agreement are selected for the actual estimation of the directional wave spectrum. The transfer functions for the ship responses can be determined using different computational methods such as striptheory, 3D panel codes, closed form expressions or model tests. The uncertainty associated......Knowledge of the wave environment in which a ship is operating is crucial for most on-board decision support systems. Previous research has shown that the directional wave spectrum can be estimated by the use of measured global ship responses and a set of transfer functions determined...

  6. A two-locus model of spatially varying stabilizing or directional selection on a quantitative trait.

    Geroldinger, Ludwig; Bürger, Reinhard

    2014-06-01

    The consequences of spatially varying, stabilizing or directional selection on a quantitative trait in a subdivided population are studied. A deterministic two-locus two-deme model is employed to explore the effects of migration, the degree of divergent selection, and the genetic architecture, i.e., the recombination rate and ratio of locus effects, on the maintenance of genetic variation. The possible equilibrium configurations are determined as functions of the migration rate. They depend crucially on the strength of divergent selection and the genetic architecture. The maximum migration rates are investigated below which a stable fully polymorphic equilibrium or a stable single-locus polymorphism can exist. Under stabilizing selection, but with different optima in the demes, strong recombination may facilitate the maintenance of polymorphism. However usually, and in particular with directional selection in opposite direction, the critical migration rates are maximized by a concentrated genetic architecture, i.e., by a major locus and a tightly linked minor one. Thus, complementing previous work on the evolution of genetic architectures in subdivided populations subject to diversifying selection, it is shown that concentrated architectures may aid the maintenance of polymorphism. Conditions are obtained when this is the case. Finally, the dependence of the phenotypic variance, linkage disequilibrium, and various measures of local adaptation and differentiation on the parameters is elaborated. Copyright © 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Evolution of branched regulatory genetic pathways: directional selection on pleiotropic loci accelerates developmental system drift.

    Johnson, Norman A; Porter, Adam H

    2007-01-01

    Developmental systems are regulated by a web of interacting loci. One common and useful approach in studying the evolution of development is to focus on classes of interacting elements within these systems. Here, we use individual-based simulations to study the evolution of traits controlled by branched developmental pathways involving three loci, where one locus regulates two different traits. We examined the system under a variety of selective regimes. In the case where one branch was under stabilizing selection and the other under directional selection, we observed "developmental system drift": the trait under stabilizing selection showed little phenotypic change even though the loci underlying that trait showed considerable evolutionary divergence. This occurs because the pleiotropic locus responds to directional selection and compensatory mutants are then favored in the pathway under stabilizing selection. Though developmental system drift may be caused by other mechanisms, it seems likely that it is accelerated by the same underlying genetic mechanism as that producing the Dobzhansky-Muller incompatibilities that lead to speciation in both linear and branched pathways. We also discuss predictions of our model for developmental system drift and how different selective regimes affect probabilities of speciation in the branched pathway system.

  8. Neuronal Intra-Individual Variability Masks Response Selection Differences between ADHD Subtypes—A Need to Change Perspectives

    Annet Bluschke

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Due to the high intra-individual variability in attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD, there may be considerable bias in knowledge about altered neurophysiological processes underlying executive dysfunctions in patients with different ADHD subtypes. When aiming to establish dimensional cognitive-neurophysiological constructs representing symptoms of ADHD as suggested by the initiative for Research Domain Criteria, it is crucial to consider such processes independent of variability. We examined patients with the predominantly inattentive subtype (attention deficit disorder, ADD and the combined subtype of ADHD (ADHD-C in a flanker task measuring conflict control. Groups were matched for task performance. Besides using classic event-related potential (ERP techniques and source localization, neurophysiological data was also analyzed using residue iteration decomposition (RIDE to statistically account for intra-individual variability and S-LORETA to estimate the sources of the activations. The analysis of classic ERPs related to conflict monitoring revealed no differences between patients with ADD and ADHD-C. When individual variability was accounted for, clear differences became apparent in the RIDE C-cluster (analog to the P3 ERP-component. While patients with ADD distinguished between compatible and incompatible flanker trials early on, patients with ADHD-C seemed to employ more cognitive resources overall. These differences are reflected in inferior parietal areas. The study demonstrates differences in neuronal mechanisms related to response selection processes between ADD and ADHD-C which, according to source localization, arise from the inferior parietal cortex. Importantly, these differences could only be detected when accounting for intra-individual variability. The results imply that it is very likely that differences in neurophysiological processes between ADHD subtypes are underestimated and have not been recognized because intra

  9. Parasympathetic neurons in the cranial medial ventricular fat pad on the dog heart selectively decrease ventricular contractility.

    Dickerson, L W; Rodak, D J; Fleming, T J; Gatti, P J; Massari, V J; McKenzie, J C; Gillis, R A

    1998-05-28

    We hypothesized that selective control of ventricular contractility might be mediated by postganglionic parasympathetic neurons in the cranial medial ventricular (CMV) ganglion plexus located in a fat pad at the base of the aorta. Sinus rate, atrioventricular (AV) conduction (ventricular rate during atrial pacing), and left ventricular contractile force (LV dP/dt during right ventricular pacing) were measured in eight chloralose-anesthetized dogs both before and during bilateral cervical vagus stimulation (20-30 V, 0.5 ms pulses, 15-20 Hz). Seven of these dogs were tested under beta-adrenergic blockade (propranolol, 0.8 mg kg(-1) i.v.). Control responses included sinus node bradycardia or arrest during spontaneous rhythm, high grade AV block or complete heart block, and a 30% decrease in contractility from 2118 +/- 186 to 1526 +/- 187 mm Hg s(-1) (P 0.05) decrease in contractility but still elicited the same degree of sinus bradycardia and AV block (N = 8, P < 0.05). Five dogs were re-tested 3 h after trimethaphan fat pad injection, at which time blockade of vagally-induced negative inotropy was partially reversed, as vagal stimulation decreased LV dP/dt by 19%. The same dose of trimethaphan given either locally into other fat pads (PVFP or IVC-ILA) or systemically (i.v.) had no effect on vagally-induced negative inotropy. Thus, parasympathetic ganglia located in the CMV fat pad mediated a decrease in ventricular contractility during vagal stimulation. Blockade of the CMV fat pad had no effect on vagally-mediated slowing of sinus rate or AV conduction.

  10. Prenatal exposure to vinclozolin disrupts selective aspects of the gonadotropin-releasing hormone neuronal system of the rabbit

    Wadas, B.C.; Hartshorn, C.A.; Aurand, E.R.; Palmer, J.S.; Roselli, C.E.; Noel, M.L.; Gore, A.C.; Veeramachaneni, D.N.R.; Tobet, S.A.

    2010-01-01

    Developmental exposure to the agricultural fungicide vinclozolin can impair reproductive function in male rabbits and was previously found to decrease the number of immunoreactive-gonadotropin-releasing hormone (ir-GnRH) neurons in the region of the organum vasculosum of the lamina terminalis (OVLT) and rostral preoptic area (rPOA) by postnatal week (PNW) 6. To further examine the disruption of GnRH neurons by fetal vinclozolin exposure, in the current study, pregnant rabbits were dosed orall...

  11. Selective retrograde labeling of lateral olivocochlear neurons in the brainstem based on preferential uptake of 3H-D-aspartic acid in the cochlea

    Ryan, A.F.; Schwartz, I.R.; Helfert, R.H.; Keithley, E.; Wang, Z.X.

    1987-01-01

    We have previously shown that perfusion of the gerbil cochlea with probe concentrations of 3 H-D-aspartic acid (D-ASP) results in immediate, selective labeling of 50-60% of the efferent terminals under the inner hair cells, presumably by high-affinity uptake. The present study was undertaken to determine the origin of these endings. Twenty-four hours after cochlear perfusion with D-ASP, labeled neurons were observed in the ipsilateral, and to a much lesser extent in the contralateral, lateral superior olivary nucleus (LSO). The cells were small, primarily fusiform, and showed fewer synaptic contacts than other LSO cells. Combined transport of D-ASP and horseradish peroxidase indicated that all olivocochlear neurons within the LSO that projected to the injected cochlea were labeled by D-ASP. Labeled fibers coursed dorsally from the LSO, joined contralateral fibers that had passed under the floor of the fourth ventricle, and entered the VIIIth nerve root at its ventromedial edge. Adjacent to the ventral cochlear nucleus (VCN), densely labeled collateral fibers crossed the nerve root to enter the VCN. Labeled fibers and terminals were prominent in the central VCN. Neither retrograde transport of D-ASP by medial olivocochlear and vestibular efferents nor anterograde transport by VIIIth nerve afferents was observed. The D-ASP-labeled cells and fibers are clearly lateral olivocochlear efferents. Retrograde transport of D-ASP thus allows the cells, axons, and collaterals of the lateral olivocochlear system to be studied, morphologically, in isolation from other cells that project to the cochlea. Since the olivocochlear neurons are almost certainly cholinergic, retrograde amino acid transport does not necessarily identify the primary neurotransmitter of a neuron. Rather, it indicates the presence of selective uptake by the processes of that neuron at the site of amino acid injection

  12. A four-step sandwich radioimmunoassay for direct selection of monoclonal antibodies to allergen molecules

    Ley, V.; Corbi, A.L.; Sanchez-Madrid, F.; Carreira, J.C.

    1985-01-01

    A 4-step radioimmunoassay has been devised for direct identification of monoclonal antibodies (MAb) directed to IgE-binding molecules. Polyvinyl chloride wells coated with purified anti-mouse kappa chain MAb (187-1) were successively incubated with: (1) MAb-containing hybridoma supernatants, (2) allergen extract, (3) allergic patients' serum pool, and (4) 125 I-labeled anti-human IgE antiserum, to detect MAb-allergen-IgE complexes. MAb to allergens from Parietaria judaica pollen and Dermatophagoides mites have been selected with this screening procedure. The affinity-purified allergen molecules competed the binding of IgE to allergen extracts coated to paper discs in a RAST inhibition assay, confirming the anti-allergen specificity of the selected MAb. This screening method is sensitive enough to allow detection of MAb directed to poorly represented allergens. (Auth.)

  13. Directional selection on cold tolerance does not constrain plastic capacity in a butterfly.

    Franke, Kristin; Dierks, Anneke; Fischer, Klaus

    2012-12-05

    Organisms may respond to environmental change by means of genetic adaptation, phenotypic plasticity or both, which may result in genotype-environment interactions (G x E) if genotypes differ in their phenotypic response. We here specifically target the latter source of variation (i.e. G x E) by comparing plastic responses among lines of the tropical butterfly Bicyclus anynana that had been selected for increased cold tolerance and according controls. Our main aim here was to test the hypothesis that directional selection on cold tolerance will interfere with plastic capacities. Plastic responses to temperature and feeding treatments were strong, with e.g. higher compared to lower temperatures reducing cold tolerance, longevity, pupal mass, and development time. We report a number of statistically significant genotype-environment interactions (i.e. interactions between selection regime and environmental variables), but most of these were not consistent across treatment groups. We found some evidence though for larger plastic responses to different rearing temperatures in the selection compared to the control lines, while plastic responses to different adult temperatures and feeding treatments were overall very similar across selection regimes. Our results indicate that plastic capacities are not always constrained by directional selection (on cold tolerance) and therefore genetic changes in trait means, but may operate independently.

  14. The evolution of phenotypic integration: How directional selection reshapes covariation in mice.

    Penna, Anna; Melo, Diogo; Bernardi, Sandra; Oyarzabal, Maria Inés; Marroig, Gabriel

    2017-10-01

    Variation is the basis for evolution, and understanding how variation can evolve is a central question in biology. In complex phenotypes, covariation plays an even more important role, as genetic associations between traits can bias and alter evolutionary change. Covariation can be shaped by complex interactions between loci, and this genetic architecture can also change during evolution. In this article, we analyzed mouse lines experimentally selected for changes in size to address the question of how multivariate covariation changes under directional selection, as well as to identify the consequences of these changes to evolution. Selected lines showed a clear restructuring of covariation in their cranium and, instead of depleting their size variation, these lines increased their magnitude of integration and the proportion of variation associated with the direction of selection. This result is compatible with recent theoretical works on the evolution of covariation that take the complexities of genetic architecture into account. This result also contradicts the traditional view of the effects of selection on available covariation and suggests a much more complex view of how populations respond to selection. © 2017 The Author(s). Evolution published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  15. Charles Darwin's Origin of Species, directional selection, and the evolutionary sciences today.

    Kutschera, Ulrich

    2009-11-01

    The book On the Origin of Species, published in November 1859, is an "abstract" without references, compiled by Charles Darwin from a much longer manuscript entitled "Natural Selection." Here, I summarize the five theories that can be extracted from Darwin's monograph, explain the true meaning of the phrase "struggle for life" (i.e., competition and cooperation), and outline Darwin's original concept of natural selection in populations of animals and plants. Since neither Darwin nor Alfred R. Wallace distinguished between stabilizing and directional natural selection, the popular argument that "selection only eliminates but is not creative" is still alive today. However, I document that August Weismann (Die Bedeutung der sexuellen Fortpflanzung für die Selektions-Theorie. Gustav Fischer-Verlag, Jena, 1886) and Ivan Schmalhausen (Factors of evolution. The theory of stabilizing selection. The Blackiston Company, Philadelphia, 1949) provided precise definitions for directional (dynamic) selection in nature and illustrate this "Weismann-Schmalhausen principle" with respect to the evolutionary development of novel phenotypes. Then, the modern (synthetic) theory of biological evolution that is based on the work of Theodosius Dobzhansky (Genetics and the origin of species. Columbia University Press, New York, 1937) and others, and the expanded version of this system of theories, are outlined. Finally, I document that symbiogenesis (i.e., primary endosymbiosis, a process that gave rise to the first eukaryotic cells), ongoing directional natural selection, and the dynamic Earth (plate tectonics, i.e., geological events that both created and destroyed terrestrial and aquatic habitats) were the key processes responsible for the documented macroevolutionary patterns in all five kingdoms of life. Since the evolutionary development of the earliest archaic bacteria more than 3,500 mya, the biosphere of our dynamic planet has been dominated by prokaryotic microbes. Eubacteria

  16. Rapid and efficient CRISPR/Cas9 gene inactivation in human neurons during human pluripotent stem cell differentiation and direct reprogramming.

    Rubio, Alicia; Luoni, Mirko; Giannelli, Serena G; Radice, Isabella; Iannielli, Angelo; Cancellieri, Cinzia; Di Berardino, Claudia; Regalia, Giulia; Lazzari, Giovanna; Menegon, Andrea; Taverna, Stefano; Broccoli, Vania

    2016-11-18

    The CRISPR/Cas9 system is a rapid and customizable tool for gene editing in mammalian cells. In particular, this approach has widely opened new opportunities for genetic studies in neurological disease. Human neurons can be differentiated in vitro from hPSC (human Pluripotent Stem Cells), hNPCs (human Neural Precursor Cells) or even directly reprogrammed from fibroblasts. Here, we described a new platform which enables, rapid and efficient CRISPR/Cas9-mediated genome targeting simultaneously with three different paradigms for in vitro generation of neurons. This system was employed to inactivate two genes associated with neurological disorder (TSC2 and KCNQ2) and achieved up to 85% efficiency of gene targeting in the differentiated cells. In particular, we devised a protocol that, combining the expression of the CRISPR components with neurogenic factors, generated functional human neurons highly enriched for the desired genome modification in only 5 weeks. This new approach is easy, fast and that does not require the generation of stable isogenic clones, practice that is time consuming and for some genes not feasible.

  17. Specific Intensity Direct Current (DC) Electric Field Improves Neural Stem Cell Migration and Enhances Differentiation towards βIII-Tubulin+ Neurons

    Zhao, Huiping; Steiger, Amanda; Nohner, Mitch; Ye, Hui

    2015-01-01

    Control of stem cell migration and differentiation is vital for efficient stem cell therapy. Literature reporting electric field–guided migration and differentiation is emerging. However, it is unknown if a field that causes cell migration is also capable of guiding cell differentiation—and the mechanisms for these processes remain unclear. Here, we report that a 115 V/m direct current (DC) electric field can induce directional migration of neural precursor cells (NPCs). Whole cell patching revealed that the cell membrane depolarized in the electric field, and buffering of extracellular calcium via EGTA prevented cell migration under these conditions. Immunocytochemical staining indicated that the same electric intensity could also be used to enhance differentiation and increase the percentage of cell differentiation into neurons, but not astrocytes and oligodendrocytes. The results indicate that DC electric field of this specific intensity is capable of promoting cell directional migration and orchestrating functional differentiation, suggestively mediated by calcium influx during DC field exposure. PMID:26068466

  18. Dominance genetic variance for traits under directional selection in Drosophila serrata.

    Sztepanacz, Jacqueline L; Blows, Mark W

    2015-05-01

    In contrast to our growing understanding of patterns of additive genetic variance in single- and multi-trait combinations, the relative contribution of nonadditive genetic variance, particularly dominance variance, to multivariate phenotypes is largely unknown. While mechanisms for the evolution of dominance genetic variance have been, and to some degree remain, subject to debate, the pervasiveness of dominance is widely recognized and may play a key role in several evolutionary processes. Theoretical and empirical evidence suggests that the contribution of dominance variance to phenotypic variance may increase with the correlation between a trait and fitness; however, direct tests of this hypothesis are few. Using a multigenerational breeding design in an unmanipulated population of Drosophila serrata, we estimated additive and dominance genetic covariance matrices for multivariate wing-shape phenotypes, together with a comprehensive measure of fitness, to determine whether there is an association between directional selection and dominance variance. Fitness, a trait unequivocally under directional selection, had no detectable additive genetic variance, but significant dominance genetic variance contributing 32% of the phenotypic variance. For single and multivariate morphological traits, however, no relationship was observed between trait-fitness correlations and dominance variance. A similar proportion of additive and dominance variance was found to contribute to phenotypic variance for single traits, and double the amount of additive compared to dominance variance was found for the multivariate trait combination under directional selection. These data suggest that for many fitness components a positive association between directional selection and dominance genetic variance may not be expected. Copyright © 2015 by the Genetics Society of America.

  19. Using geometric morphometric visualizations of directional selection gradients to investigate morphological differentiation.

    Weaver, Timothy D; Gunz, Philipp

    2018-04-01

    Researchers studying extant and extinct taxa are often interested in identifying the evolutionary processes that have lead to the morphological differences among the taxa. Ideally, one could distinguish the influences of neutral evolutionary processes (genetic drift, mutation) from natural selection, and in situations for which selection is implicated, identify the targets of selection. The directional selection gradient is an effective tool for investigating evolutionary process, because it can relate form (size and shape) differences between taxa to the variation and covariation found within taxa. However, although most modern morphometric analyses use the tools of geometric morphometrics (GM) to analyze landmark data, to date, selection gradients have mainly been calculated from linear measurements. To address this methodological gap, here we present a GM approach for visualizing and comparing between-taxon selection gradients with each other, associated difference vectors, and "selection" gradients from neutral simulations. To exemplify our approach, we use a dataset of 347 three-dimensional landmarks and semilandmarks recorded on the crania of 260 primate specimens (112 humans, 67 common chimpanzees, 36 bonobos, 45 gorillas). Results on this example dataset show how incorporating geometric information can provide important insights into the evolution of the human braincase, and serve to demonstrate the utility of our approach for understanding morphological evolution. © 2018 The Author(s). Evolution © 2018 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  20. Polymorphism in the two-locus Levene model with nonepistatic directional selection.

    Bürger, Reinhard

    2009-11-01

    For the Levene model with soft selection in two demes, the maintenance of polymorphism at two diallelic loci is studied. Selection is nonepistatic and dominance is intermediate. Thus, there is directional selection in every deme and at every locus. We assume that selection is in opposite directions in the two demes because otherwise no polymorphism is possible. If at one locus there is no dominance, then a complete analysis of the dynamical and equilibrium properties is performed. In particular, a simple necessary and sufficient condition for the existence of an internal equilibrium and sufficient conditions for global asymptotic stability are obtained. These results are extended to deme-independent degree of dominance at one locus. A perturbation analysis establishes structural stability within the full parameter space. In the absence of genotype-environment interaction, which requires deme-independent dominance at both loci, nongeneric equilibrium behavior occurs, and the introduction of arbitrarily small genotype-environment interaction changes the equilibrium structure and may destroy stable polymorphism. The volume of the parameter space for which a (stable) two-locus polymorphism is maintained is computed numerically. It is investigated how this volume depends on the strength of selection and on the dominance relations. If the favorable allele is (partially) dominant in its deme, more than 20% of all parameter combinations lead to a globally asymptotically stable, fully polymorphic equilibrium.

  1. Omni-directional selective shielding material based on amorphous glass coated microwires.

    Ababei, G; Chiriac, H; David, V; Dafinescu, V; Nica, I

    2012-01-01

    The shielding effectiveness of the omni-directional selective shielding material based on CoFe-glass coated amorphous wires in 0.8 GHz-3 GHz microwave frequency range is investigated. The measurements were done in a controlled medium using a TEM cell and in the free space using horn antennas, respectively. Experimental results indicate that the composite shielding material can be developed with desired shielding effectiveness and selective absorption of the microwave frequency range by controlling the number of the layers and the length of microwires.

  2. Direct and efficient transfection of mouse neural stem cells and mature neurons by in vivo mRNA electroporation.

    Bugeon, Stéphane; de Chevigny, Antoine; Boutin, Camille; Coré, Nathalie; Wild, Stefan; Bosio, Andreas; Cremer, Harold; Beclin, Christophe

    2017-11-01

    In vivo brain electroporation of DNA expression vectors is a widely used method for lineage and gene function studies in the developing and postnatal brain. However, transfection efficiency of DNA is limited and adult brain tissue is refractory to electroporation. Here, we present a systematic study of mRNA as a vector for acute genetic manipulation in the developing and adult brain. We demonstrate that mRNA electroporation is far more efficient than DNA electroporation, and leads to faster and more homogeneous protein expression in vivo Importantly, mRNA electroporation allows the manipulation of neural stem cells and postmitotic neurons in the adult brain using minimally invasive procedures. Finally, we show that this approach can be efficiently used for functional studies, as exemplified by transient overexpression of the neurogenic factor Myt1l and by stably inactivating Dicer nuclease in vivo in adult born olfactory bulb interneurons and in fully integrated cortical projection neurons. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  3. Footprints of directional selection in wild Atlantic salmon populations: evidence for parasite-driven evolution?

    Zueva, Ksenia J; Lumme, Jaakko; Veselov, Alexey E; Kent, Matthew P; Lien, Sigbjørn; Primmer, Craig R

    2014-01-01

    Mechanisms of host-parasite co-adaptation have long been of interest in evolutionary biology; however, determining the genetic basis of parasite resistance has been challenging. Current advances in genome technologies provide new opportunities for obtaining a genome-scale view of the action of parasite-driven natural selection in wild populations and thus facilitate the search for specific genomic regions underlying inter-population differences in pathogen response. European populations of Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar L.) exhibit natural variance in susceptibility levels to the ectoparasite Gyrodactylus salaris Malmberg 1957, ranging from resistance to extreme susceptibility, and are therefore a good model for studying the evolution of virulence and resistance. However, distinguishing the molecular signatures of genetic drift and environment-associated selection in small populations such as land-locked Atlantic salmon populations presents a challenge, specifically in the search for pathogen-driven selection. We used a novel genome-scan analysis approach that enabled us to i) identify signals of selection in salmon populations affected by varying levels of genetic drift and ii) separate potentially selected loci into the categories of pathogen (G. salaris)-driven selection and selection acting upon other environmental characteristics. A total of 4631 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were screened in Atlantic salmon from 12 different northern European populations. We identified three genomic regions potentially affected by parasite-driven selection, as well as three regions presumably affected by salinity-driven directional selection. Functional annotation of candidate SNPs is consistent with the role of the detected genomic regions in immune defence and, implicitly, in osmoregulation. These results provide new insights into the genetic basis of pathogen susceptibility in Atlantic salmon and will enable future searches for the specific genes involved.

  4. Selective attention modulates the direction of audio-visual temporal recalibration.

    Ikumi, Nara; Soto-Faraco, Salvador

    2014-01-01

    Temporal recalibration of cross-modal synchrony has been proposed as a mechanism to compensate for timing differences between sensory modalities. However, far from the rich complexity of everyday life sensory environments, most studies to date have examined recalibration on isolated cross-modal pairings. Here, we hypothesize that selective attention might provide an effective filter to help resolve which stimuli are selected when multiple events compete for recalibration. We addressed this question by testing audio-visual recalibration following an adaptation phase where two opposing audio-visual asynchronies were present. The direction of voluntary visual attention, and therefore to one of the two possible asynchronies (flash leading or flash lagging), was manipulated using colour as a selection criterion. We found a shift in the point of subjective audio-visual simultaneity as a function of whether the observer had focused attention to audio-then-flash or to flash-then-audio groupings during the adaptation phase. A baseline adaptation condition revealed that this effect of endogenous attention was only effective toward the lagging flash. This hints at the role of exogenous capture and/or additional endogenous effects producing an asymmetry toward the leading flash. We conclude that selective attention helps promote selected audio-visual pairings to be combined and subsequently adjusted in time but, stimulus organization exerts a strong impact on recalibration. We tentatively hypothesize that the resolution of recalibration in complex scenarios involves the orchestration of top-down selection mechanisms and stimulus-driven processes.

  5. Selective attention modulates the direction of audio-visual temporal recalibration.

    Nara Ikumi

    Full Text Available Temporal recalibration of cross-modal synchrony has been proposed as a mechanism to compensate for timing differences between sensory modalities. However, far from the rich complexity of everyday life sensory environments, most studies to date have examined recalibration on isolated cross-modal pairings. Here, we hypothesize that selective attention might provide an effective filter to help resolve which stimuli are selected when multiple events compete for recalibration. We addressed this question by testing audio-visual recalibration following an adaptation phase where two opposing audio-visual asynchronies were present. The direction of voluntary visual attention, and therefore to one of the two possible asynchronies (flash leading or flash lagging, was manipulated using colour as a selection criterion. We found a shift in the point of subjective audio-visual simultaneity as a function of whether the observer had focused attention to audio-then-flash or to flash-then-audio groupings during the adaptation phase. A baseline adaptation condition revealed that this effect of endogenous attention was only effective toward the lagging flash. This hints at the role of exogenous capture and/or additional endogenous effects producing an asymmetry toward the leading flash. We conclude that selective attention helps promote selected audio-visual pairings to be combined and subsequently adjusted in time but, stimulus organization exerts a strong impact on recalibration. We tentatively hypothesize that the resolution of recalibration in complex scenarios involves the orchestration of top-down selection mechanisms and stimulus-driven processes.

  6. Learning Recruits Neurons Representing Previously Established Associations in the Corvid Endbrain.

    Veit, Lena; Pidpruzhnykova, Galyna; Nieder, Andreas

    2017-10-01

    Crows quickly learn arbitrary associations. As a neuronal correlate of this behavior, single neurons in the corvid endbrain area nidopallium caudolaterale (NCL) change their response properties during association learning. In crows performing a delayed association task that required them to map both familiar and novel sample pictures to the same two choice pictures, NCL neurons established a common, prospective code for associations. Here, we report that neuronal tuning changes during learning were not distributed equally in the recorded population of NCL neurons. Instead, such learning-related changes relied almost exclusively on neurons which were already encoding familiar associations. Only in such neurons did behavioral improvements during learning of novel associations coincide with increasing selectivity over the learning process. The size and direction of selectivity for familiar and newly learned associations were highly correlated. These increases in selectivity for novel associations occurred only late in the delay period. Moreover, NCL neurons discriminated correct from erroneous trial outcome based on feedback signals at the end of the trial, particularly in newly learned associations. Our results indicate that task-relevant changes during association learning are not distributed within the population of corvid NCL neurons but rather are restricted to a specific group of association-selective neurons. Such association neurons in the multimodal cognitive integration area NCL likely play an important role during highly flexible behavior in corvids.

  7. Directional selection has shaped the oral jaws of Lake Malawi cichlid fishes.

    Albertson, R Craig; Streelman, J Todd; Kocher, Thomas D

    2003-04-29

    East African cichlid fishes represent one of the most striking examples of rapid and convergent evolutionary radiation among vertebrates. Models of ecological speciation would suggest that functional divergence in feeding morphology has contributed to the origin and maintenance of cichlid species diversity. However, definitive evidence for the action of natural selection has been missing. Here we use quantitative genetics to identify regions of the cichlid genome responsible for functionally important shape differences in the oral jaw apparatus. The consistent direction of effects for individual quantitative trait loci suggest that cichlid jaws and teeth evolved in response to strong, divergent selection. Moreover, several chromosomal regions contain a disproportionate number of quantitative trait loci, indicating a prominent role for pleiotropy or genetic linkage in the divergence of this character complex. Of particular interest are genomic intervals with concerted effects on both the length and height of the lower jaw. Coordinated changes in this area of the oral jaw apparatus are predicted to have direct consequences for the speed and strength of jaw movement. Taken together, our results imply that the rapid and replicative nature of cichlid trophic evolution is the result of directional selection on chromosomal packages that encode functionally linked aspects of the craniofacial skeleton.

  8. Directional Selection from Host Plants Is a Major Force Driving Host Specificity in Magnaporthe Species.

    Zhong, Zhenhui; Norvienyeku, Justice; Chen, Meilian; Bao, Jiandong; Lin, Lianyu; Chen, Liqiong; Lin, Yahong; Wu, Xiaoxian; Cai, Zena; Zhang, Qi; Lin, Xiaoye; Hong, Yonghe; Huang, Jun; Xu, Linghong; Zhang, Honghong; Chen, Long; Tang, Wei; Zheng, Huakun; Chen, Xiaofeng; Wang, Yanli; Lian, Bi; Zhang, Liangsheng; Tang, Haibao; Lu, Guodong; Ebbole, Daniel J; Wang, Baohua; Wang, Zonghua

    2016-05-06

    One major threat to global food security that requires immediate attention, is the increasing incidence of host shift and host expansion in growing number of pathogenic fungi and emergence of new pathogens. The threat is more alarming because, yield quality and quantity improvement efforts are encouraging the cultivation of uniform plants with low genetic diversity that are increasingly susceptible to emerging pathogens. However, the influence of host genome differentiation on pathogen genome differentiation and its contribution to emergence and adaptability is still obscure. Here, we compared genome sequence of 6 isolates of Magnaporthe species obtained from three different host plants. We demonstrated the evolutionary relationship between Magnaporthe species and the influence of host differentiation on pathogens. Phylogenetic analysis showed that evolution of pathogen directly corresponds with host divergence, suggesting that host-pathogen interaction has led to co-evolution. Furthermore, we identified an asymmetric selection pressure on Magnaporthe species. Oryza sativa-infecting isolates showed higher directional selection from host and subsequently tends to lower the genetic diversity in its genome. We concluded that, frequent gene loss or gain, new transposon acquisition and sequence divergence are host adaptability mechanisms for Magnaporthe species, and this coevolution processes is greatly driven by directional selection from host plants.

  9. Selective electrocatalysts toward a prototype of the membraneless direct methanol fuel cell.

    Feng, Yan; Yang, Jinhua; Liu, Hui; Ye, Feng; Yang, Jun

    2014-01-22

    Mastery over the structure of nanomaterials enables control of their properties to enhance their performance for a given application. Herein we demonstrate the design and fabrication of Pt-based nanomaterials with enhanced catalytic activity and superior selectivity toward the reactions in direct methanol fuel cells (DMFCs) upon the deep understanding of the mechanisms of these electrochemical reactions. In particular, the ternary Au@Ag2S-Pt nanocomposites display superior methanol oxidation reaction (MOR) selectivity due to the electronic coupling effect among different domains of the nanocomposites, while the cage-bell structured Pt-Ru nanoparticles exhibit excellent methanol tolerance for oxygen reduction reaction (ORR) at the cathode because of the differential diffusion of methanol and oxygen in the porous Ru shell of the cage-bell nanoparticles. The good catalytic selectivity of these Pt-based nanomaterials via structural construction enables a DMFC to be built without a proton exchange membrane between the fuel electrode and the oxygen electrode.

  10. Prenatal exposure to vinclozolin disrupts selective aspects of the gonadotropin-releasing hormone neuronal system of the rabbit

    Wadas, B.C.; Hartshorn, C.A.; Aurand, E.R.; Palmer, J.S.; Roselli, C.E.; Noel, M.L.; Gore, A.C.; Veeramachaneni, D.N.R.; Tobet, S.A.

    2010-01-01

    Developmental exposure to the agricultural fungicide vinclozolin can impair reproductive function in male rabbits and was previously found to decrease the number of immunoreactive-gonadotropin-releasing hormone (ir-GnRH) neurons in the region of the organum vasculosum of the lamina terminalis (OVLT) and rostral preoptic area (rPOA) by postnatal week (PNW) 6. To further examine the disruption of GnRH neurons by fetal vinclozolin exposure, in the current study, pregnant rabbits were dosed orally with vinclozolin, flutamide, or carrot paste vehicle for the last two weeks of gestation. Offspring were euthanized at birth (males and females), PNW6 (females), PNW26 (adult males), or PNW30 (adult females) of age. At birth and in adults, brains were sectioned and processed for immunoreactive GnRH. The numbers of immunoreactive GnRH neuronal perikarya were significantly decreased in vinclozolin-treated rabbits at birth and in adult littermates. By contrast, there was an increase in GnRH immunoreactivity in the terminals in the region of the median eminence. Analysis of PNW6 female brains by radioimmunoassay (RIA) revealed a two-fold increase in GnRH peptide content in the mediobasal hypothalamus in vinclozolin-treated rabbits. This finding was complemented by immunofluorescence analyses that showed a 2.8-fold increase in GnRH immunoreactivity in the median eminence of vinclozolin compared to vehicle-treated females at PNW30. However, there was no difference between treatment groups in the measures of reproduction that were evaluated: ejaculation latency, conception rates or litter size. These results indicate that subacute, prenatal vinclozolin treatment is sufficient to create perdurable alterations in the GnRH neuronal network that forms an important input into the reproductive axis. Finally, the effect of vinclozolin on the GnRH neuronal network was not comparable to that of flutamide, suggesting that vinclozolin was not acting through anti-androgenic mechanisms. PMID

  11. Prenatal exposure to vinclozolin disrupts selective aspects of the gonadotrophin-releasing hormone neuronal system of the rabbit.

    Wadas, B C; Hartshorn, C A; Aurand, E R; Palmer, J S; Roselli, C E; Noel, M L; Gore, A C; Veeramachaneni, D N R; Tobet, S A

    2010-06-01

    Developmental exposure to the agricultural fungicide vinclozolin can impair reproductive function in male rabbits and was previously found to decrease the number of immunoreactive-gonadotrophin-releasing hormone (GnRH) neurones in the region of the organum vasculosum of the lamina terminalis and rostral preoptic area by postnatal week (PNW) 6. In the present study, in an aim to further examine the disruption of GnRH neurones by foetal vinclozolin exposure, pregnant rabbits were dosed orally with vinclozolin, flutamide or carrot paste vehicle for the last 2 weeks of gestation. Offspring were euthanised at birth (males and females), PNW 6 (females), PNW 26 (adult males) or PNW 30 (adult females) of age. At birth and in adults, brains were sectioned and processed for immunoreactive GnRH. The numbers of immunoreactive GnRH neuronal perikarya were significantly decreased in vinclozolin-treated rabbits at birth and in adult littermates. By contrast, there was an increase in GnRH immunoreactivity in the terminals in the region of the median eminence. Analysis of PNW 6 female brains by radioimmunoassay revealed a two-fold increase in GnRH peptide content in the mediobasal hypothalamus in vinclozolin-treated rabbits. This finding was complemented by immunofluorescence analyses, which revealed a 2.8-fold increase in GnRH immunoreactivity in the median eminence of vinclozolin compared to vehicle-treated females at PNW 30. However, there was no difference between treatment groups in the measures of reproduction that were evaluated: ejaculation latency, conception rates or litter size. These results indicate that sub-acute, prenatal vinclozolin treatment is sufficient to create perdurable alterations in the GnRH neuronal network that forms an important input into the reproductive axis. Finally, the effect of vinclozolin on the GnRH neuronal network was not comparable to that of flutamide, suggesting that vinclozolin was not acting through anti-androgenic mechanisms.

  12. Market study for direct utilization of geothermal resources by selected sectors of economy

    1980-08-01

    A comprehensive analysis is presented of industrial markets potential for direct use of geothermal energy by a total of six industry sectors: food and kindred products; tobacco manufactures; textile mill products; lumber and wood products (except furniture); chemicals and allied products; and leather and leather products. A brief statement is presented regarding sectors of the economy and major manufacturing processes which can readily utilize direct geothermal energy. Previous studies on plant location determinants are summarized and appropriate empirical data provided on plant locations. Location determinants and potential for direct use of geothermal resources are presented. The data was gathered through interviews with 30 senior executives in the six sectors of economy selected for study. Probable locations of plants in geothermal resource areas and recommendations for geothermal resource marketing are presented. Appendix A presents factors which impact on industry location decisions. Appendix B presents industry executives interviewed during the course of this study. (MHR)

  13. The Striatal Balancing Act in Drug Addiction: Distinct Roles of Direct and Indirect Pathway Medium Spiny Neurons

    Mary Kay eLobo

    2011-07-01

    Full Text Available The striatum plays a key role in mediating the acute and chronic effects of addictive drugs, with drugs of abuse causing long-lasting molecular and cellular alterations in both dorsal striatum and nucleus accumbens (ventral striatum. Despite the wealth of research on the biological actions of abused drugs in striatum, until recently, the distinct roles of the striatum’s two major subtypes of medium spiny neuron (MSN in drug addiction remained elusive. Recent advances in cell-type specific technologies, including fluorescent reporter mice, transgenic or knockout mice, and viral-mediated gene transfer, have advanced the field toward a more comprehensive understanding of the two MSN subtypes in the long-term actions of drugs of abuse. Here we review progress in defining the distinct molecular and functional contributions of the two MSN subtypes in mediating addiction.

  14. Charles Darwin's Origin of Species, directional selection, and the evolutionary sciences today

    Kutschera, Ulrich

    2009-11-01

    The book On the Origin of Species, published in November 1859, is an “abstract” without references, compiled by Charles Darwin from a much longer manuscript entitled “Natural Selection.” Here, I summarize the five theories that can be extracted from Darwin’s monograph, explain the true meaning of the phrase “struggle for life” (i.e., competition and cooperation), and outline Darwin’s original concept of natural selection in populations of animals and plants. Since neither Darwin nor Alfred R. Wallace distinguished between stabilizing and directional natural selection, the popular argument that “selection only eliminates but is not creative” is still alive today. However, I document that August Weismann ( Die Bedeutung der sexuellen Fortpflanzung für die Selektions-Theorie. Gustav Fischer-Verlag, Jena, 1886) and Ivan Schmalhausen ( Factors of evolution. The theory of stabilizing selection. The Blackiston Company, Philadelphia, 1949) provided precise definitions for directional (dynamic) selection in nature and illustrate this “Weismann-Schmalhausen principle” with respect to the evolutionary development of novel phenotypes. Then, the modern (synthetic) theory of biological evolution that is based on the work of Theodosius Dobzhansky ( Genetics and the origin of species. Columbia University Press, New York, 1937) and others, and the expanded version of this system of theories, are outlined. Finally, I document that symbiogenesis (i.e., primary endosymbiosis, a process that gave rise to the first eukaryotic cells), ongoing directional natural selection, and the dynamic Earth (plate tectonics, i.e., geological events that both created and destroyed terrestrial and aquatic habitats) were the key processes responsible for the documented macroevolutionary patterns in all five kingdoms of life. Since the evolutionary development of the earliest archaic bacteria more than 3,500 mya, the biosphere of our dynamic planet has been dominated by

  15. Identifying footprints of directional and balancing selection in marine and freshwater three-spined stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus) populations.

    Mäkinen, H S; Cano, J M; Merilä, J

    2008-08-01

    Natural selection is expected to leave an imprint on the neutral polymorphisms at the adjacent genomic regions of a selected gene. While directional selection tends to reduce within-population genetic diversity and increase among-population differentiation, the reverse is expected under balancing selection. To identify targets of natural selection in the three-spined stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus) genome, 103 microsatellite and two indel markers including expressed sequence tags (EST) and quantitative trait loci (QTL)-associated loci, were genotyped in four freshwater and three marine populations. The results indicated that a high proportion of loci (14.7%) might be affected by balancing selection and a lower proportion (2.8%) by directional selection. The strongest signatures of directional selection were detected in a microsatellite locus and two indel markers located in the intronic regions of the Eda-gene coding for the number of lateral plates. Yet, other microsatellite loci previously found to be informative in QTL-mapping studies revealed no signatures of selection. Two novel microsatellite loci (Stn12 and Stn90) located in chromosomes I and VIII, respectively, showed signals of directional selection and might be linked to genomic regions containing gene(s) important for adaptive divergence. Although the coverage of the total genomic content was relatively low, the predominance of balancing selection signals is in agreement with the contention that balancing, rather than directional selection is the predominant mode of selection in the wild.

  16. Silent reading of direct versus indirect speech activates voice-selective areas in the auditory cortex.

    Yao, Bo; Belin, Pascal; Scheepers, Christoph

    2011-10-01

    In human communication, direct speech (e.g., Mary said: "I'm hungry") is perceived to be more vivid than indirect speech (e.g., Mary said [that] she was hungry). However, for silent reading, the representational consequences of this distinction are still unclear. Although many of us share the intuition of an "inner voice," particularly during silent reading of direct speech statements in text, there has been little direct empirical confirmation of this experience so far. Combining fMRI with eye tracking in human volunteers, we show that silent reading of direct versus indirect speech engenders differential brain activation in voice-selective areas of the auditory cortex. This suggests that readers are indeed more likely to engage in perceptual simulations (or spontaneous imagery) of the reported speaker's voice when reading direct speech as opposed to meaning-equivalent indirect speech statements as part of a more vivid representation of the former. Our results may be interpreted in line with embodied cognition and form a starting point for more sophisticated interdisciplinary research on the nature of auditory mental simulation during reading.

  17. Optogenetic identification of hypothalamic orexin neuron projections to paraventricular spinally projecting neurons.

    Dergacheva, Olga; Yamanaka, Akihiro; Schwartz, Alan R; Polotsky, Vsevolod Y; Mendelowitz, David

    2017-04-01

    Orexin neurons, and activation of orexin receptors, are generally thought to be sympathoexcitatory; however, the functional connectivity between orexin neurons and a likely sympathetic target, the hypothalamic spinally projecting neurons (SPNs) in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVN) has not been established. To test the hypothesis that orexin neurons project directly to SPNs in the PVN, channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2) was selectively expressed in orexin neurons to enable photoactivation of ChR2-expressing fibers while examining evoked postsynaptic currents in SPNs in rat hypothalamic slices. Selective photoactivation of orexin fibers elicited short-latency postsynaptic currents in all SPNs tested ( n = 34). These light-triggered responses were heterogeneous, with a majority being excitatory glutamatergic responses (59%) and a minority of inhibitory GABAergic (35%) and mixed glutamatergic and GABAergic currents (6%). Both glutamatergic and GABAergic responses were present in the presence of tetrodotoxin and 4-aminopyridine, suggesting a monosynaptic connection between orexin neurons and SPNs. In addition to generating postsynaptic responses, photostimulation facilitated action potential firing in SPNs (current clamp configuration). Glutamatergic, but not GABAergic, postsynaptic currents were diminished by application of the orexin receptor antagonist almorexant, indicating orexin release facilitates glutamatergic neurotransmission in this pathway. This work identifies a neuronal circuit by which orexin neurons likely exert sympathoexcitatory control of cardiovascular function. NEW & NOTEWORTHY This is the first study to establish, using innovative optogenetic approaches in a transgenic rat model, that there are robust heterogeneous projections from orexin neurons to paraventricular spinally projecting neurons, including excitatory glutamatergic and inhibitory GABAergic neurotransmission. Endogenous orexin release modulates glutamatergic, but not

  18. Morphological evidence for novel enteric neuronal circuitry in guinea pig distal colon.

    Smolilo, D J; Costa, M; Hibberd, T J; Wattchow, D A; Spencer, Nick J

    2018-07-01

    The gastrointestinal (GI) tract is unique compared to all other internal organs; it is the only organ with its own nervous system and its own population of intrinsic sensory neurons, known as intrinsic primary afferent neurons (IPANs). How these IPANs form neuronal circuits with other functional classes of neurons in the enteric nervous system (ENS) is incompletely understood. We used a combination of light microscopy, immunohistochemistry and confocal microscopy to examine the topographical distribution of specific classes of neurons in the myenteric plexus of guinea-pig colon, including putative IPANs, with other classes of enteric neurons. These findings were based on immunoreactivity to the neuronal markers, calbindin, calretinin and nitric oxide synthase. We then correlated the varicose outputs formed by putative IPANs with subclasses of excitatory interneurons and motor neurons. We revealed that calbindin-immunoreactive varicosities form specialized structures resembling 'baskets' within the majority of myenteric ganglia, which were arranged in clusters around calretinin-immunoreactive neurons. These calbindin baskets directly arose from projections of putative IPANs and represent morphological evidence of preferential input from sensory neurons directly to a select group of calretinin neurons. Our findings uncovered that these neurons are likely to be ascending excitatory interneurons and excitatory motor neurons. Our study reveals for the first time in the colon, a novel enteric neural circuit, whereby calbindin-immunoreactive putative sensory neurons form specialized varicose structures that likely direct synaptic outputs to excitatory interneurons and motor neurons. This circuit likely forms the basis of polarized neuronal pathways underlying motility. © 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  19. PET imaging with [18F]fluoroethoxybenzovesamicol ([18F]FEOBV) following selective lesion of cholinergic pedunculopontine tegmental neurons in rat

    Cyr, Marilyn; Parent, Maxime J.; Mechawar, Naguib; Rosa-Neto, Pedro; Soucy, Jean-Paul; Aliaga, Antonio; Kostikov, Alexey; Maclaren, Duncan A.A.; Clark, Stewart D.; Bedard, Marc-Andre

    2014-01-01

    Introduction: [ 18 F]fluoroethoxybenzovesamicol ([ 18 F]FEOBV) is a PET radiotracer with high selectivity and specificity to the vesicular acetylcholine transporter (VAChT). It has been shown to be a sensitive in vivo measurement of changes of cholinergic innervation densities following lesion of the nucleus basalis of Meynert (NBM) in rat. The current study used [ 18 F]FEOBV with PET imaging to detect the effect of a highly selective lesion of the pedunculopontine (PPTg) nucleus in rat. Methods: After bilateral and selective lesions of the PPTg cholinergic neurons, rats were scanned using [ 18 F]FEOBV, then sacrificed, and their brain tissues collected for immunostaining and quantification of the VAChT. Results: Comparisons with control rats revealed that cholinergic losses can be detected in the brainstem, lateral thalamus, and pallidum by using both in vivo imaging methods with [ 18 F]FEOBV, and ex vivo measurements. In the brainstem PPTg area, significant correlations were observed between in vivo and ex vivo measurements, while this was not the case in the thalamic and pallidal projection sites. Conclusions: These findings support PET imaging with [ 18 F]FEOBV as a reliable in vivo method for the detection of neuronal terminal losses resulting from lesion of the PPTg. Useful applications can be found in the study of neurodegenerative diseases in human, such as Parkinson’s disease, multiple system atrophy, progressive supranuclear palsy, or dementia with Lewy bodies

  20. Single-Cell RNA-Seq of Mouse Dopaminergic Neurons Informs Candidate Gene Selection for Sporadic Parkinson Disease.

    Hook, Paul W; McClymont, Sarah A; Cannon, Gabrielle H; Law, William D; Morton, A Jennifer; Goff, Loyal A; McCallion, Andrew S

    2018-03-01

    Genetic variation modulating risk of sporadic Parkinson disease (PD) has been primarily explored through genome-wide association studies (GWASs). However, like many other common genetic diseases, the impacted genes remain largely unknown. Here, we used single-cell RNA-seq to characterize dopaminergic (DA) neuron populations in the mouse brain at embryonic and early postnatal time points. These data facilitated unbiased identification of DA neuron subpopulations through their unique transcriptional profiles, including a postnatal neuroblast population and substantia nigra (SN) DA neurons. We use these population-specific data to develop a scoring system to prioritize candidate genes in all 49 GWAS intervals implicated in PD risk, including genes with known PD associations and many with extensive supporting literature. As proof of principle, we confirm that the nigrostriatal pathway is compromised in Cplx1-null mice. Ultimately, this systematic approach establishes biologically pertinent candidates and testable hypotheses for sporadic PD, informing a new era of PD genetic research. Copyright © 2018 American Society of Human Genetics. All rights reserved.

  1. 78 FR 63464 - William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program Repayment Plan Selection Form; Extension of Public...

    2013-10-24

    ... DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program Repayment Plan Selection Form; Extension of Public Comment Period; Correction AGENCY: Department of Education. ACTION: Correction notice... entitled, ``William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program Repayment Plan Selection Form''. ED is extending...

  2. Bidirectional interactions between neuronal and hemodynamic responses to transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS: challenges for brain-state dependent tDCS

    Anirban eDutta

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS has been shown to modulate cortical neural activity. During neural activity, the electric currents from excitable membranes of brain tissue superimpose in the extracellular medium and generate a potential at scalp, which is referred as the electroencephalogram (EEG. Respective neural activity (energy demand has been shown to be closely related, spatially and temporally, to cerebral blood flow (CBF that supplies glucose (energy supply via neurovascular coupling. The hemodynamic response can be captured by near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS, which enables continuous monitoring of cerebral oxygenation and blood volume. This neurovascular coupling phenomenon led to the concept of neurovascular unit (NVU that consists of the endothelium, glia, neurons, pericytes, and the basal lamina. Here, recent works suggest NVU as an integrated system working in concert using feedback mechanisms to enable proper brain homeostasis and function where the challenge remains in capturing these mostly nonlinear spatiotemporal interactions within NVU during tDCS. Therefore, we propose EEG-NIRS-based whole-head monitoring of tDCS-induced neuronal and hemodynamic alterations for brain-state dependent tDCS.

  3. A finite volume alternate direction implicit approach to modeling selective laser melting

    Hattel, Jesper Henri; Mohanty, Sankhya

    2013-01-01

    Over the last decade, several studies have attempted to develop thermal models for analyzing the selective laser melting process with a vision to predict thermal stresses, microstructures and resulting mechanical properties of manufactured products. While a holistic model addressing all involved...... to accurately simulate the process, are constrained by either the size or scale of the model domain. A second challenging aspect involves the inclusion of non-linear material behavior into the 3D implicit FE models. An alternating direction implicit (ADI) method based on a finite volume (FV) formulation...... is proposed for modeling single-layer and few-layers selective laser melting processes. The ADI technique is implemented and applied for two cases involving constant material properties and non-linear material behavior. The ADI FV method consume less time while having comparable accuracy with respect to 3D...

  4. Direct and Indirect Factors Influencing Selection of Birthing Attendants in Gunungsari, West Lombok (NTB

    Ni Nyoman Aryaniti

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Background and purpose: This study aims to determine the direct and indirect factors influencing the selection of birth attendants in Gunungsari subdistrict, West Lombok.Methods: This study was cross-sectional with a purposively selected sample of 27 mothers giving birth assisted by non-health professionals. Samples of those assisted by health professionals were taken by means of proportional systematic random sampling in Gunungsari and Penimbung health centers, respectively 29 of 916 and 14 of 437. Exogenous factors were maternal education levels, attendance to ANC classes, knowledge levels regarding to birthing attendants, maternal attitude, family support, and access to facilities. Birth attendant selection was the endogenousfactor. Data were collected by means of interviews. Data analysis includes descriptive and inferential analysis with path analysis by linear regression.Results: The majority of respondents were 21-25 years old (87.4% , housewives (47.14% had educat ion under high school (65.72% and were married (88.57%. Family support had a direct influence in decision making with a coefficient of 0.534 and 35.54% influence overall. Attendance to ANC classes in addition to family support had anindirect influence with a coefficient of 0.520 and 34.78% influence overall. Family support had a direct influence and the factor of attendance to ANC classes and family support has an indirect effect with the overall effect of 70.32%.Conclusion: The presence of the husband/family was needed in ANC class, through an implementation of schedule agreement.Keywords: family support, ANC class, birth attendants, path analysis, West Lombok

  5. Induced defences alter the strength and direction of natural selection on reproductive traits in common milkweed.

    Thompson, K A; Cory, K A; Johnson, M T J

    2017-06-01

    Evolutionary biologists have long sought to understand the ecological processes that generate plant reproductive diversity. Recent evidence indicates that constitutive antiherbivore defences can alter natural selection on reproductive traits, but it is unclear whether induced defences will have the same effect and whether reduced foliar damage in defended plants is the cause of this pattern. In a factorial field experiment using common milkweed, Asclepias syriaca L., we induced plant defences using jasmonic acid (JA) and imposed foliar damage using scissors. We found that JA-induced plants experienced selection for more inflorescences that were smaller in size (fewer flowers), whereas control plants only experienced a trend towards selection for larger inflorescences (more flowers); all effects were independent of foliar damage. Our results demonstrate that induced defences can alter both the strength and direction of selection on reproductive traits, and suggest that antiherbivore defences may promote the evolution of plant reproductive diversity. © 2017 European Society For Evolutionary Biology. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2017 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  6. Subgenomic Diversity Patterns Caused by Directional Selection in Bread Wheat Gene Pools

    Kai Voss-Fels

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Genetic diversity represents the fundamental key to breeding success, providing the basis for breeders to select varieties with constantly improving yield performance. On the other hand, strong selection during domestication and breeding have eliminated considerable genetic diversity in the breeding pools of major crops, causing erosion of genetic potential for adaptation to emerging challenges like climate change. High-throughput genomic technologies can address this dilemma by providing detailed knowledge to characterize and replenish genetic diversity in breeding programs. In hexaploid bread wheat ( L., the staple food for 35% of the world’s population, bottlenecks during allopolyploidisation followed by strong artificial selection have considerably narrowed diversity to the extent that yields in many regions appear to be unexpectedly stagnating. In this study, we used a 90,000 single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP wheat genotyping array to assay high-frequency, polymorphic SNP markers in 460 accessions representing different phenological diversity groups from Asian, Australian, European, and North American bread wheat breeding materials. Detailed analysis of subgroup diversity at the chromosome and subgenome scale revealed highly distinct patterns of conserved linkage disequilibrium between different gene pools. The data enable identification of genome regions in most need of rejuvenation with novel diversity and provide a high-resolution molecular basis for genomic-assisted introgression of new variation into chromosome segments surrounding directionally selected metaloci conferring important adaptation and quality traits.

  7. Specific responses of human hippocampal neurons are associated with better memory.

    Suthana, Nanthia A; Parikshak, Neelroop N; Ekstrom, Arne D; Ison, Matias J; Knowlton, Barbara J; Bookheimer, Susan Y; Fried, Itzhak

    2015-08-18

    A population of human hippocampal neurons has shown responses to individual concepts (e.g., Jennifer Aniston) that generalize to different instances of the concept. However, recordings from the rodent hippocampus suggest an important function of these neurons is their ability to discriminate overlapping representations, or pattern separate, a process that may facilitate discrimination of similar events for successful memory. In the current study, we explored whether human hippocampal neurons can also demonstrate the ability to discriminate between overlapping representations and whether this selectivity could be directly related to memory performance. We show that among medial temporal lobe (MTL) neurons, certain populations of neurons are selective for a previously studied (target) image in that they show a significant decrease in firing rate to very similar (lure) images. We found that a greater proportion of these neurons can be found in the hippocampus compared with other MTL regions, and that memory for individual items is correlated to the degree of selectivity of hippocampal neurons responsive to those items. Moreover, a greater proportion of hippocampal neurons showed selective firing for target images in good compared with poor performers, with overall memory performance correlated with hippocampal selectivity. In contrast, selectivity in other MTL regions was not associated with memory performance. These findings show that a substantial proportion of human hippocampal neurons encode specific memories that support the discrimination of overlapping representations. These results also provide previously unidentified evidence consistent with a unique role of the human hippocampus in orthogonalization of representations in declarative memory.

  8. Higher-resolution selective metallization on alumina substrate by laser direct writing and electroless plating

    Lv, Ming; Liu, Jianguo; Wang, Suhuan; Ai, Jun; Zeng, Xiaoyan

    2016-03-01

    How to fabricate conductive patterns on ceramic boards with higher resolution is a challenge in the past years. The fabrication of copper patterns on alumina substrate by laser direct writing and electroless copper plating is a low cost and high efficiency method. Nevertheless, the lower resolution limits its further industrial applications in many fields. In this report, the mechanisms of laser direct writing and electroless copper plating were studied. The results indicated that as the decomposed products of precursor PdCl2 have different chemical states respectively in laser-irradiated zone (LIZ) and laser-affected zone (LAZ). This phenomenon was utilized and a special chemical cleaning method with aqua regia solution was taken to selectively remove the metallic Pd in LAZ, while kept the PdO in LIZ as the only active seeds. As a result, the resolution of subsequent copper patterns was improved significantly. This technique has a great significance to develop the microelectronics devices.

  9. Dual brush process for selective surface modification in graphoepitaxy directed self-assembly

    Doise, Jan; Chan, Boon Teik; Hori, Masafumi; Gronheid, Roel

    2017-07-01

    Graphoepitaxy directed self-assembly is a potential low-cost solution for patterning via layers with pitches beyond the reach of a single optical lithographic exposure. In this process, selective control of the interfacial energy at the bottom and sidewall of the template is an important but challenging exercise. A dual brush process is implemented, in which two brushes with distinct end-groups are consecutively grafted to the prepattern to achieve fully independent modification of the bottom and sidewall surface of the template. A comprehensive study of hole pattern quality shows that using a dual brush process leads to a substantial improvement in terms of positional and dimensional variability across the process window. These findings will be useful to others who wish to manipulate polymer-surface interactions in directed self-assembly flows.

  10. Mould Design and Material selection for Film Insert Moulding of Direct Methanol Fuel Cell Packaging

    Wöhner, Timo; Senkbeil, S.; Olesen, T. L.

    2015-01-01

    This paper presents the mould design for an injection moulding (IM) process for the production of a methanol container for the use in small, passive Direct Methanol Fuel Cell (DMFC) systems, which are intended to be used in behind-the-ear hearing aid systems. One of the crucial properties...... for the production of containers with different venting area and location of the venting holes and the use of different membrane thicknesses by using the same mould. Mould design and material selection are presented....

  11. Assessment of materials selection and performance for direct-coal- liquefaction plants in the United States

    Olsen, A.R.; Judkins, R.R.; Keiser, J.R.

    1996-09-01

    Several direct coal liquefaction processes have been demonstrated at the pilot plant level in the United States. Presently only one plant remains operational, namely, the Hydrocarbon Technologies, Inc., 4.0- ton-per-day process development unit in Lawrenceville, New Jersey. The period from 1974 to 1982 saw the greatest amount of development of direct coal liquefaction in the United States with four major pilot plants being devoted to variants of this technology. The plants included the SRC-I plant at Wilsonville, Alabama, which operated from 1974 to 1992; the SRC-I/II plant at Fort Lewis, Washington, which operated from 1974 to 1981; the H-Coal plant at Catlettsburg, Kentucky, which operated from 1980 to 1982; and the Exxon Coal Liquefaction Pilot Plant at Baytown, Texas, which operated from 1980 to 1982. Oak Ridge National Laboratory scientists and engineers were actively involved in many phases and technical disciplines at all four of these plants, especially in materials testing, evaluation, and failure analyses. In addition, ORNL materials scientists and engineers conducted reviews of the demonstration and commercial plant designs for materials selections. The ORNL staff members worked closely with materials engineers at the pilot plants in identifying causes of materials degradation and failures, and in identifying solutions to these problems. This report provides a comprehensive summary of those materials activities. Materials performance data from laboratory and coal liquefaction pilot plant tests, failure analyses, and analyses of components after use in pilot plants were reviewed and assessed to determine the extent and causes of materials degradation in direct coal liquefaction process environments. Reviews of demonstration and commercial plant design documents for materials selections were conducted. These reviews and assessments are presented to capture the knowledge base on the most likely materials of construction for direct coal liquefaction plants.

  12. Use of direct and iterative solvers for estimation of SNP effects in genome-wide selection

    Eduardo da Cruz Gouveia Pimentel

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to compare iterative and direct solvers for estimation of marker effects in genomic selection. One iterative and two direct methods were used: Gauss-Seidel with Residual Update, Cholesky Decomposition and Gentleman-Givens rotations. For resembling different scenarios with respect to number of markers and of genotyped animals, a simulated data set divided into 25 subsets was used. Number of markers ranged from 1,200 to 5,925 and number of animals ranged from 1,200 to 5,865. Methods were also applied to real data comprising 3081 individuals genotyped for 45181 SNPs. Results from simulated data showed that the iterative solver was substantially faster than direct methods for larger numbers of markers. Use of a direct solver may allow for computing (covariances of SNP effects. When applied to real data, performance of the iterative method varied substantially, depending on the level of ill-conditioning of the coefficient matrix. From results with real data, Gentleman-Givens rotations would be the method of choice in this particular application as it provided an exact solution within a fairly reasonable time frame (less than two hours. It would indeed be the preferred method whenever computer resources allow its use.

  13. A dendrite-autonomous mechanism for direction selectivity in retinal starburst amacrine cells.

    Hausselt, Susanne E; Euler, Thomas; Detwiler, Peter B; Denk, Winfried

    2007-07-01

    Detection of image motion direction begins in the retina, with starburst amacrine cells (SACs) playing a major role. SACs generate larger dendritic Ca(2+) signals when motion is from their somata towards their dendritic tips than for motion in the opposite direction. To study the mechanisms underlying the computation of direction selectivity (DS) in SAC dendrites, electrical responses to expanding and contracting circular wave visual stimuli were measured via somatic whole-cell recordings and quantified using Fourier analysis. Fundamental and, especially, harmonic frequency components were larger for expanding stimuli. This DS persists in the presence of GABA and glycine receptor antagonists, suggesting that inhibitory network interactions are not essential. The presence of harmonics indicates nonlinearity, which, as the relationship between harmonic amplitudes and holding potential indicates, is likely due to the activation of voltage-gated channels. [Ca(2+)] changes in SAC dendrites evoked by voltage steps and monitored by two-photon microscopy suggest that the distal dendrite is tonically depolarized relative to the soma, due in part to resting currents mediated by tonic glutamatergic synaptic input, and that high-voltage-activated Ca(2+) channels are active at rest. Supported by compartmental modeling, we conclude that dendritic DS in SACs can be computed by the dendrites themselves, relying on voltage-gated channels and a dendritic voltage gradient, which provides the spatial asymmetry necessary for direction discrimination.

  14. A dendrite-autonomous mechanism for direction selectivity in retinal starburst amacrine cells.

    Susanne E Hausselt

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available Detection of image motion direction begins in the retina, with starburst amacrine cells (SACs playing a major role. SACs generate larger dendritic Ca(2+ signals when motion is from their somata towards their dendritic tips than for motion in the opposite direction. To study the mechanisms underlying the computation of direction selectivity (DS in SAC dendrites, electrical responses to expanding and contracting circular wave visual stimuli were measured via somatic whole-cell recordings and quantified using Fourier analysis. Fundamental and, especially, harmonic frequency components were larger for expanding stimuli. This DS persists in the presence of GABA and glycine receptor antagonists, suggesting that inhibitory network interactions are not essential. The presence of harmonics indicates nonlinearity, which, as the relationship between harmonic amplitudes and holding potential indicates, is likely due to the activation of voltage-gated channels. [Ca(2+] changes in SAC dendrites evoked by voltage steps and monitored by two-photon microscopy suggest that the distal dendrite is tonically depolarized relative to the soma, due in part to resting currents mediated by tonic glutamatergic synaptic input, and that high-voltage-activated Ca(2+ channels are active at rest. Supported by compartmental modeling, we conclude that dendritic DS in SACs can be computed by the dendrites themselves, relying on voltage-gated channels and a dendritic voltage gradient, which provides the spatial asymmetry necessary for direction discrimination.

  15. Fractalkine Signaling Regulates Macrophage Recruitment into the Cochlea and Promotes the Survival of Spiral Ganglion Neurons after Selective Hair Cell Lesion.

    Kaur, Tejbeer; Zamani, Darius; Tong, Ling; Rubel, Edwin W; Ohlemiller, Kevin K; Hirose, Keiko; Warchol, Mark E

    2015-11-11

    Macrophages are recruited into the cochlea in response to injury caused by acoustic trauma or ototoxicity, but the nature of the interaction between macrophages and the sensory structures of the inner ear remains unclear. The present study examined the role of fractalkine signaling in regulating the injury-evoked behavior of macrophages following the selective ablation of cochlear hair cells. We used a novel transgenic mouse model in which the human diphtheria toxin receptor (huDTR) is selectively expressed under the control of Pou4f3, a hair cell-specific transcription factor. Administration of diphtheria toxin (DT) to these mice resulted in nearly complete ablation of cochlear hair cells, with no evident pathology among supporting cells, spiral ganglion neurons, or cells of the cochlear lateral wall. Hair cell death led to an increase in macrophages associated with the sensory epithelium of the cochlea. Their numbers peaked at 14 days after DT and then declined at later survival times. Increased macrophages were also observed within the spiral ganglion, but their numbers remained elevated for (at least) 56 d after DT. To investigate the role of fractalkine signaling in macrophage recruitment, we crossed huDTR mice to a mouse line that lacks expression of the fractalkine receptor (CX3CR1). Disruption of fractalkine signaling reduced macrophage recruitment into both the sensory epithelium and spiral ganglion and also resulted in diminished survival of spiral ganglion neurons after hair cell death. Our results suggest a fractalkine-mediated interaction between macrophages and the neurons of the cochlea. It is known that damage to the inner ear leads to recruitment of inflammatory cells (macrophages), but the chemical signals that initiate this recruitment and the functions of macrophages in the damaged ear are unclear. Here we show that fractalkine signaling regulates macrophage recruitment into the cochlea and also promotes the survival of cochlear afferents after

  16. Lack of direct evidence for natural selection at the candidate thrifty gene locus, PPARGC1A.

    Cadzow, Murray; Merriman, Tony R; Boocock, James; Dalbeth, Nicola; Stamp, Lisa K; Black, Michael A; Visscher, Peter M; Wilcox, Phillip L

    2016-11-15

    The gene PPARGC1A, in particular the Gly482Ser variant (rs8192678), had been proposed to be subject to natural selection, particularly in recent progenitors of extant Polynesian populations. Reasons include high levels of population differentiation and increased frequencies of the derived type 2 diabetes (T2D) risk 482Ser allele, and association with body mass index (BMI) in a small Tongan population. However, no direct statistical tests for selection have been applied. Using a range of Polynesian populations (Tongan, Māori, Samoan) we re-examined evidence for association between Gly482Ser with T2D and BMI as well as gout. Using also Asian, European, and African 1000 Genome Project samples a range of statistical tests for selection (F ST , integrated haplotype score (iHS), cross population extended haplotype homozygosity (XP-EHH), Tajima's D and Fay and Wu's H) were conducted on the PPARGC1A locus. No statistically significant evidence for association between Gly482Ser and any of BMI, T2D or gout was found. Population differentiation (F ST ) was smallest between Asian and Pacific populations (New Zealand Māori ≤ 0.35, Samoan ≤ 0.20). When compared to European (New Zealand Māori ≤ 0.40, Samoan ≤ 0.25) or African populations (New Zealand Māori ≤ 0.80, Samoan ≤ 0.66) this differentiation was larger. We did not find any strong evidence for departure from neutral evolution at this locus when applying any of the other statistical tests for selection. However, using the same analytical methods, we found evidence for selection in specific populations at previously identified loci, indicating that lack of selection was the most likely explanation for the lack of evidence of selection in PPARGC1A. We conclude that there is no compelling evidence for selection at this locus, and that this gene should not be considered a candidate thrifty gene locus in Pacific populations. High levels of population differentiation at this locus and the

  17. Social determinants of health in selected slum areas in Jordan: challenges and policy directions.

    Ajlouni, Musa T

    2016-01-01

    The unplanned urbanization in Jordan has over time created many informal settlements "slums" around big cities as Amman, Zerka and Aqaba. The purpose of this study was to highlight the most common challenges related to social determinants of health in two selected slum areas in Amman and Aqaba and suggest policy directions and interventions to meet these challenges. In addition to a prestructured interview with all household heads living in the two slum sites, focus group meetings with a purposefully selected sample of 12 slum dwellers in each site were used to assess the structural and intermediary determinants of health as perceived by slum residents in the two study locations. The study found that slum residents in the two locations suffer from many challenges as severe poverty; unemployment; illiteracy and low education attainments; gender discrimination; insufficient and poor diet; social and official exclusion; unhealthy environment; lack of water supply, electricity and basic sanitation facilities; high prevalence of diseases; and insufficient and inappropriate health services. Specific policy directions to meet these challenges were recommended and grouped into three main clusters: social protection, social inclusion and empowerment. New plans and tools should be developed by local authorities in Jordan to understand, protect, include and empower those vulnerable people who are forced to live in these unhealthy and inhuman environments. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  18. Modeling Multilevel Supplier Selection Problem Based on Weighted-Directed Network and Its Solution

    Chia-Te Wei

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available With the rapid development of economy, the supplier network is becoming more and more complicated. It is important to choose the right suppliers for improving the efficiency of the supply chain, so how to choose the right ones is one of the important research directions of supply chain management. This paper studies the partner selection problem from the perspective of supplier network global optimization. Firstly, this paper discusses and forms the evaluation system to estimate the supplier from the two indicators of risk and greenness and then applies the value as the weight of the network between two nodes to build a weighted-directed supplier network; secondly, the study establishes the optimal combination model of supplier selection based on the global network perspective and solves the model by the dynamic programming-tabu search algorithm and the improved ant colony algorithm, respectively; finally, different scale simulation examples are given to testify the efficiency of the two algorithms. The results show that the ant colony algorithm is superior to the tabu search one as a whole, but the latter is slightly better than the former when network scale is small.

  19. Adapting to a Changing Environment: Modeling the Interaction of Directional Selection and Plasticity.

    Nunney, Leonard

    2016-01-01

    Human-induced habitat loss and fragmentation constrains the range of many species, making them unable to respond to climate change by moving. For such species to avoid extinction, they must respond with some combination of phenotypic plasticity and genetic adaptation. Haldane's "cost of natural selection" limits the rate of adaptation, but, although modeling has shown that in very large populations long-term adaptation can be maintained at rates substantially faster than Haldane's suggested limit, maintaining large populations is often an impossibility, so phenotypic plasticity may be crucial in enhancing the long-term survival of small populations. The potential importance of plasticity is in "buying time" for populations subject to directional environmental change: if genotypes can encompass a greater environmental range, then populations can maintain high fitness for a longer period of time. Alternatively, plasticity could be detrimental by lessening the effectiveness of natural selection in promoting genetic adaptation. Here, I modeled a directionally changing environment in which a genotype's adaptive phenotypic plasticity is centered around the environment where its fitness is highest. Plasticity broadens environmental tolerance and, provided it is not too costly, is favored by natural selection. However, a paradoxical result of the individually advantageous spread of plasticity is that, unless the adaptive trait is determined by very few loci, the long-term extinction risk of a population increases. This effect reflects a conflict between the short-term individual benefit of plasticity and a long-term detriment to population persistence, adding to the multiple threats facing small populations under conditions of climate change. © The American Genetic Association. 2015. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  20. Direct conversion of CO2 into liquid fuels with high selectivity over a bifunctional catalyst

    Gao, Peng; Li, Shenggang; Bu, Xianni; Dang, Shanshan; Liu, Ziyu; Wang, Hui; Zhong, Liangshu; Qiu, Minghuang; Yang, Chengguang; Cai, Jun; Wei, Wei; Sun, Yuhan

    2017-10-01

    Although considerable progress has been made in carbon dioxide (CO2) hydrogenation to various C1 chemicals, it is still a great challenge to synthesize value-added products with two or more carbons, such as gasoline, directly from CO2 because of the extreme inertness of CO2 and a high C-C coupling barrier. Here we present a bifunctional catalyst composed of reducible indium oxides (In2O3) and zeolites that yields a high selectivity to gasoline-range hydrocarbons (78.6%) with a very low methane selectivity (1%). The oxygen vacancies on the In2O3 surfaces activate CO2 and hydrogen to form methanol, and C-C coupling subsequently occurs inside zeolite pores to produce gasoline-range hydrocarbons with a high octane number. The proximity of these two components plays a crucial role in suppressing the undesired reverse water gas shift reaction and giving a high selectivity for gasoline-range hydrocarbons. Moreover, the pellet catalyst exhibits a much better performance during an industry-relevant test, which suggests promising prospects for industrial applications.

  1. Managing discrimination in selection: the influence of directives from an authority and social dominance orientation.

    Umphress, Elizabeth E; Simmons, Aneika L; Boswell, Wendy R; Triana, María del Carmen

    2008-09-01

    The authors examined one manner in which to decrease the negative impact of social dominance orientation (SDO), an individual difference variable that indicates support for the "domination of 'inferior' groups by 'superior' groups" (J. Sidanius & F. Pratto, 1999, p. 48), on the selection of candidates from low-status groups within society. Consistent with the tenets of social dominance theory, in 2 studies we found that those high in SDO reported that they were less likely to select a potential team member who is a member of a low-status group (i.e., a White female in Study 1 and a Black male in Study 2) than those low in SDO. However, explicit directives from an authority moderated this effect such that those high in SDO were more likely to select both candidates when authority figures clearly communicated that job performance indicators should be used when choosing team members. Thus, our studies suggest that the negative effects of SDO may be attenuated if those high in SDO are instructed by superiors to use legitimate performance criteria to evaluate job candidates.

  2. Selective production of arenes via direct lignin upgrading over a niobium-based catalyst

    Shao, Yi; Xia, Qineng; Dong, Lin; Liu, Xiaohui; Han, Xue; Parker, Stewart F.; Cheng, Yongqiang; Daemen, Luke L.; Ramirez-Cuesta, Anibal J.; Yang, Sihai; Wang, Yanqin

    2017-07-01

    Lignin is the only large-volume renewable source of aromatic chemicals. Efficient depolymerization and deoxygenation of lignin while retaining the aromatic functionality are attractive but extremely challenging. Here we report the selective production of arenes via direct hydrodeoxygenation of organosolv lignin over a porous Ru/Nb2O5 catalyst that enabled the complete removal of the oxygen content from lignin. The conversion of birch lignin to monomer C7-C9 hydrocarbons is nearly quantitative based on its monomer content, with a total mass yield of 35.5 wt% and an exceptional arene selectivity of 71 wt%. Inelastic neutron scattering and DFT calculations confirm that the Nb2O5 support is catalytically unique compared with other traditional oxide supports, and the disassociation energy of Caromatic-OH bonds in phenolics is significantly reduced upon adsorption on Nb2O5, resulting in its distinct selectivity to arenes. This one-pot process provides a promising approach for improved lignin valorization with general applicability.

  3. Acoustic Noise Alters Selective Attention Processes as Indicated by Direct Current (DC Brain Potential Changes

    Karin Trimmel

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Acoustic environmental noise, even of low to moderate intensity, is known to adversely affect information processing in animals and humans via attention mechanisms. In particular, facilitation and inhibition of information processing are basic functions of selective attention. Such mechanisms can be investigated by analyzing brain potentials under conditions of externally directed attention (intake of environmental information versus internally directed attention (rejection of environmental stimuli and focusing on memory/planning processes. This study investigated brain direct current (DC potential shifts—which are discussed to represent different states of cortical activation—of tasks that require intake and rejection of environmental information under noise. It was hypothesized that without background noise rejection tasks would show more positive DC potential changes compared to intake tasks and that under noise both kinds of tasks would show positive DC shifts as an expression of cortical inhibition caused by noise. DC potential shifts during intake and rejection tasks were analyzed at 16 standard locations in 45 persons during irrelevant speech or white noise vs. control condition. Without noise, rejection tasks were associated with more positive DC potential changes compared to intake tasks. During background noise, however, this difference disappeared and both kinds of tasks led to positive DC shifts. Results suggest—besides some limitations—that noise modulates selective attention mechanisms by switching to an environmental information processing and noise rejection mode, which could represent a suggested “attention shift”. Implications for fMRI studies as well as for public health in learning and performance environments including susceptible persons are discussed.

  4. Acoustic noise alters selective attention processes as indicated by direct current (DC) brain potential changes.

    Trimmel, Karin; Schätzer, Julia; Trimmel, Michael

    2014-09-26

    Acoustic environmental noise, even of low to moderate intensity, is known to adversely affect information processing in animals and humans via attention mechanisms. In particular, facilitation and inhibition of information processing are basic functions of selective attention. Such mechanisms can be investigated by analyzing brain potentials under conditions of externally directed attention (intake of environmental information) versus internally directed attention (rejection of environmental stimuli and focusing on memory/planning processes). This study investigated brain direct current (DC) potential shifts-which are discussed to represent different states of cortical activation-of tasks that require intake and rejection of environmental information under noise. It was hypothesized that without background noise rejection tasks would show more positive DC potential changes compared to intake tasks and that under noise both kinds of tasks would show positive DC shifts as an expression of cortical inhibition caused by noise. DC potential shifts during intake and rejection tasks were analyzed at 16 standard locations in 45 persons during irrelevant speech or white noise vs. control condition. Without noise, rejection tasks were associated with more positive DC potential changes compared to intake tasks. During background noise, however, this difference disappeared and both kinds of tasks led to positive DC shifts. Results suggest-besides some limitations-that noise modulates selective attention mechanisms by switching to an environmental information processing and noise rejection mode, which could represent a suggested "attention shift". Implications for fMRI studies as well as for public health in learning and performance environments including susceptible persons are discussed.

  5. Higher-resolution selective metallization on alumina substrate by laser direct writing and electroless plating

    Lv, Ming; Liu, Jianguo; Wang, Suhuan; Ai, Jun; Zeng, Xiaoyan

    2016-01-01

    Graphical abstract: - Highlights: • Mechanisms of laser direct writing and electroless plating were studied. • Active seeds in laser-irradiated zone and laser-affected zone were found to be different. • A special chemical cleaning method with aqua regia was taken. • Higher-resolution copper patterns on alumina ceramic were obtained conveniently. - Abstract: How to fabricate conductive patterns on ceramic boards with higher resolution is a challenge in the past years. The fabrication of copper patterns on alumina substrate by laser direct writing and electroless copper plating is a low cost and high efficiency method. Nevertheless, the lower resolution limits its further industrial applications in many fields. In this report, the mechanisms of laser direct writing and electroless copper plating were studied. The results indicated that as the decomposed products of precursor PdCl_2 have different chemical states respectively in laser-irradiated zone (LIZ) and laser-affected zone (LAZ). This phenomenon was utilized and a special chemical cleaning method with aqua regia solution was taken to selectively remove the metallic Pd in LAZ, while kept the PdO in LIZ as the only active seeds. As a result, the resolution of subsequent copper patterns was improved significantly. This technique has a great significance to develop the microelectronics devices.

  6. Directional Track Selection Technique in CR39 SSNTD for lowyield reaction experiments

    Ingenito, Francesco; Andreoli, Pierluigi; Batani, Dimitri; Bonasera, Aldo; Boutoux, Guillaume; Burgy, Frederic; Cipriani, Mattia; Consoli, Fabrizio; Cristofari, Giuseppe; De Angelis, Riccardo; Di Giorgio, Giorgio; Ducret, Jean Eric; Giulietti, Danilo; Jakubowska, Katarzyna

    2018-01-01

    There is a great interest in the study of p-11B aneutronic nuclear fusion reactions, both for energy production and for determination of fusion cross-sections at low energies. In this context we performed experiments at CELIA in which energetic protons, accelerated by the laser ECLIPSE, were directed toward a solid Boron target. Because of the small cross-sections at these energies the number of expected reactions is low. CR39 Solid-State Nuclear Track Detectors (SSNTD) were used to detect the alpha particles produced. Because of the low expected yield, it is difficult to discriminate the tracks due to true fusion products from those due to natural background in the CR39. To this purpose we developed a methodology of particle recognition according to their direction with respect to the detector normal, able to determine the position of their source. We applied this to the specific experiment geometry, so to select from all the tracks those due to particles coming from the region of interaction between accelerated protons and solid boron target. This technique can be of great help on the analysis of SSNTD in experiments with low yield reactions, but can be also generally applied to any experiment where particles reach the track detector with known directions, and for example to improve the detection limit of particle spectrometers using CR39.

  7. Hypothalamic neurones governing glucose homeostasis.

    Coppari, R

    2015-06-01

    The notion that the brain directly controls the level of glucose in the blood (glycaemia) independent of its known action on food intake and body weight has been known ever since 1849. That year, the French physiologist Dr Claude Bernard reported that physical puncture of the floor of the fourth cerebral ventricle rapidly leads to an increased level of sugar in the blood (and urine) in rabbits. Despite this important discovery, it took approximately 150 years before significant efforts aimed at understanding the underlying mechanism of brain-mediated control of glucose metabolism were made. Technological developments allowing for genetically-mediated manipulation of selected molecular pathways in a neurone-type-specific fashion unravelled the importance of specific molecules in specific neuronal populations. These neuronal pathways govern glucose metabolism in the presence and even in the absence of insulin. Also, a peculiarity of these pathways is that certain biochemically-defined neurones govern glucose metabolism in a tissue-specific fashion. © 2015 British Society for Neuroendocrinology.

  8. Neuron array with plastic synapses and programmable dendrites.

    Ramakrishnan, Shubha; Wunderlich, Richard; Hasler, Jennifer; George, Suma

    2013-10-01

    We describe a novel neuromorphic chip architecture that models neurons for efficient computation. Traditional architectures of neuron array chips consist of large scale systems that are interfaced with AER for implementing intra- or inter-chip connectivity. We present a chip that uses AER for inter-chip communication but uses fast, reconfigurable FPGA-style routing with local memory for intra-chip connectivity. We model neurons with biologically realistic channel models, synapses and dendrites. This chip is suitable for small-scale network simulations and can also be used for sequence detection, utilizing directional selectivity properties of dendrites, ultimately for use in word recognition.

  9. Genomic selection models for directional dominance: an example for litter size in pigs.

    Varona, Luis; Legarra, Andrés; Herring, William; Vitezica, Zulma G

    2018-01-26

    The quantitative genetics theory argues that inbreeding depression and heterosis are founded on the existence of directional dominance. However, most procedures for genomic selection that have included dominance effects assumed prior symmetrical distributions. To address this, two alternatives can be considered: (1) assume the mean of dominance effects different from zero, and (2) use skewed distributions for the regularization of dominance effects. The aim of this study was to compare these approaches using two pig datasets and to confirm the presence of directional dominance. Four alternative models were implemented in two datasets of pig litter size that consisted of 13,449 and 11,581 records from 3631 and 2612 sows genotyped with the Illumina PorcineSNP60 BeadChip. The models evaluated included (1) a model that does not consider directional dominance (Model SN), (2) a model with a covariate b for the average individual homozygosity (Model SC), (3) a model with a parameter λ that reflects asymmetry in the context of skewed Gaussian distributions (Model AN), and (4) a model that includes both b and λ (Model Full). The results of the analysis showed that posterior probabilities of a negative b or a positive λ under Models SC and AN were higher than 0.99, which indicate positive directional dominance. This was confirmed with the predictions of inbreeding depression under Models Full, SC and AN, that were higher than in the SN Model. In spite of differences in posterior estimates of variance components between models, comparison of models based on LogCPO and DIC indicated that Model SC provided the best fit for the two datasets analyzed. Our results confirmed the presence of positive directional dominance for pig litter size and suggested that it should be taken into account when dominance effects are included in genomic evaluation procedures. The consequences of ignoring directional dominance may affect predictions of breeding values and can lead to biased

  10. Stimulus selection and tracking during urination: autoshaping directed behavior with toilet targets.

    Siegel, R K

    1977-01-01

    A simple procedure is described for investigating stimuli selected as targets during urination in the commode. Ten normal males preferred a floating target that could be tracked to a series of stationary targets. This technique was used to bring misdirected urinations in a severely retarded male under rapid stimulus control of a floating target in the commode. The float stimulus was also evaluated with nine institionalized, moderately retarded males and results indicated rapid autoshaping of directed urination without the use of verbal instructions or conventional toilet training. The technique can be applied in training children to control misdirected urinations in institution for the retarded, in psychiatric wards with regressed populations, and in certain male school dormitories. PMID:885828

  11. Spatially localized motion aftereffect disappears faster from awareness when selectively attended to according to its direction.

    Murd, Carolina; Bachmann, Talis

    2011-05-25

    In searching for the target-afterimage patch among spatially separate alternatives of color-afterimages the target fades from awareness before its competitors (Bachmann, T., & Murd, C. (2010). Covert spatial attention in search for the location of a color-afterimage patch speeds up its decay from awareness: Introducing a method useful for the study of neural correlates of visual awareness. Vision Research 50, 1048-1053). In an analogous study presented here we show that a similar effect is obtained when a target spatial location specified according to the direction of motion aftereffect within it is searched by covert top-down attention. The adverse effect of selective attention on the duration of awareness of sensory qualiae known earlier to be present for color and periodic spatial contrast is extended also to sensory channels carrying motion information. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Transcranial direct current stimulation over the right DLPFC selectively modulates subprocesses in working memory

    Jiarui Wang

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Background Working memory, as a complex system, consists of two independent components: manipulation and maintenance process, which are defined as executive control and storage process. Previous studies mainly focused on the overall effect of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS on working memory. However, little has been known about the segregative effects of tDCS on the sub-processes within working memory. Method Transcranial direct current stimulation, as one of the non-invasive brain stimulation techniques, is being widely used to modulate the cortical activation of local brain areas. This study modified a spatial n-back experiment with anodal and cathodal tDCS exertion on the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC, aiming to investigate the effects of tDCS on the two sub-processes of working memory: manipulation (updating and maintenance. Meanwhile, considering the separability of tDCS effects, we further reconfirmed the causal relationship between the right DLPFC and the sub-processes of working memory with different tDCS conditions. Results The present study showed that cathodal tDCS on the right DLPFC selectively improved the performance of the modified 2-back task in the difficult condition, whereas anodal tDCS significantly reduced the performance of subjects and showed an speeding-up tendency of response time. More precisely, the results of discriminability index and criterion showed that only cathodal tDCS enhanced the performance of maintenance in the difficult condition. Neither of the two tDCS conditions affected the performance of manipulation (updating. Conclusion These findings provide evidence that cathodal tDCS of the right DLPFC selectively affects maintenance capacity. Besides, cathodal tDCS also serves as an interference suppressor to reduce the irrelevant interference, thereby indirectly improving the working memory capacity. Moreover, the right DLPFC is not the unique brain regions for working memory

  13. Changes of Functional and Directed Resting-State Connectivity Are Associated with Neuronal Oscillations, ApoE Genotype and Amyloid Deposition in Mild Cognitive Impairment

    Lars Michels

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The assessment of effects associated with cognitive impairment using electroencephalography (EEG power mapping allows the visualization of frequency-band specific local changes in oscillatory activity. In contrast, measures of coherence and dynamic source synchronization allow for the study of functional and effective connectivity, respectively. Yet, these measures have rarely been assessed in parallel in the context of mild cognitive impairment (MCI and furthermore it has not been examined if they are related to risk factors of Alzheimer’s disease (AD such as amyloid deposition and apolipoprotein ε4 (ApoE allele occurrence. Here, we investigated functional and directed connectivities with Renormalized Partial Directed Coherence (RPDC in 17 healthy controls (HC and 17 participants with MCI. Participants underwent ApoE-genotyping and Pittsburgh compound B positron emission tomography (PiB-PET to assess amyloid deposition. We observed lower spectral source power in MCI in the alpha and beta bands. Coherence was stronger in HC than MCI across different neuronal sources in the delta, theta, alpha, beta and gamma bands. The directed coherence analysis indicated lower information flow between fronto-temporal (including the hippocampus sources and unidirectional connectivity in MCI. In MCI, alpha and beta RPDC showed an inverse correlation to age and gender; global amyloid deposition was inversely correlated to alpha coherence, RPDC and beta and gamma coherence. Furthermore, the ApoE status was negatively correlated to alpha coherence and RPDC, beta RPDC and gamma coherence. A classification analysis of cognitive state revealed the highest accuracy using EEG power, coherence and RPDC as input. For this small but statistically robust (Bayesian power analyses sample, our results suggest that resting EEG related functional and directed connectivities are sensitive to the cognitive state and are linked to ApoE and amyloid burden.

  14. A selective electrocatalyst-based direct methanol fuel cell operated at high concentrations of methanol.

    Feng, Yan; Liu, Hui; Yang, Jun

    2017-06-01

    Owing to the serious crossover of methanol from the anode to the cathode through the polymer electrolyte membrane, direct methanol fuel cells (DMFCs) usually use dilute methanol solutions as fuel. However, the use of high-concentration methanol is highly demanded to improve the energy density of a DMFC system. Instead of the conventional strategies (for example, improving the fuel-feed system, membrane development, modification of electrode, and water management), we demonstrate the use of selective electrocatalysts to run a DMFC at high concentrations of methanol. In particular, at an operating temperature of 80°C, the as-fabricated DMFC with core-shell-shell Au@Ag 2 S@Pt nanocomposites at the anode and core-shell Au@Pd nanoparticles at the cathode produces a maximum power density of 89.7 mW cm -2 at a methanol feed concentration of 10 M and maintains good performance at a methanol concentration of up to 15 M. The high selectivity of the electrocatalysts achieved through structural construction accounts for the successful operation of the DMFC at high concentrations of methanol.

  15. A selective electrocatalyst–based direct methanol fuel cell operated at high concentrations of methanol

    Feng, Yan; Liu, Hui; Yang, Jun

    2017-01-01

    Owing to the serious crossover of methanol from the anode to the cathode through the polymer electrolyte membrane, direct methanol fuel cells (DMFCs) usually use dilute methanol solutions as fuel. However, the use of high-concentration methanol is highly demanded to improve the energy density of a DMFC system. Instead of the conventional strategies (for example, improving the fuel-feed system, membrane development, modification of electrode, and water management), we demonstrate the use of selective electrocatalysts to run a DMFC at high concentrations of methanol. In particular, at an operating temperature of 80°C, the as-fabricated DMFC with core-shell-shell Au@Ag2S@Pt nanocomposites at the anode and core-shell Au@Pd nanoparticles at the cathode produces a maximum power density of 89.7 mW cm−2 at a methanol feed concentration of 10 M and maintains good performance at a methanol concentration of up to 15 M. The high selectivity of the electrocatalysts achieved through structural construction accounts for the successful operation of the DMFC at high concentrations of methanol. PMID:28695199

  16. The Composition Effect of Macroeconomic Factors on Foreign Direct Investment in Selected SAARC Countries

    Mehwish MALIK

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The objective of the study is to investigate the most promising economic variables i.e., foreign direct investment (FDI, exports and financial development on economic growth in selected South Asian Association of Regional Co-corporation (SAARC countries. In addition, this study argued that whether FDI, Exports and financial development fosters or hinder economic growth in SAARC countries, for this purpose, panel data set of selected five SAARC countries namely, Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Srilanka considered for empirical consideration over a period of 1975 to 2011. By using two-stage least square (2SLSL technique, empirical evidence on the effects of FDI, exports and financial development on economic growth is mix in terms of apriori expectations. In case of Bangladesh, exports and broad money supply (M2 is the positive and significant contributor to increase economic growth, whereas, M2 increases India’s GDP. FDI is the only significant contributor to increase Pakistan’s economic growth. In case of Nepal and Srilanka, broad money supply increases economic growth, whereas, due to high dependency on imports, exports could not considerably increases economic growth in those regions.

  17. Nitrile in the Hole: Discovery of a Small Auxiliary Pocket in Neuronal Nitric Oxide Synthase Leading to the Development of Potent and Selective 2-Aminoquinoline Inhibitors.

    Cinelli, Maris A; Li, Huiying; Chreifi, Georges; Poulos, Thomas L; Silverman, Richard B

    2017-05-11

    Neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) inhibition is a promising strategy to treat neurodegenerative disorders, but the development of nNOS inhibitors is often hindered by poor pharmacokinetics. We previously developed a class of membrane-permeable 2-aminoquinoline inhibitors and later rearranged the scaffold to decrease off-target binding. However, the resulting compounds had decreased permeability, low human nNOS activity, and low selectivity versus human eNOS. In this study, 5-substituted phenyl ether-linked aminoquinolines and derivatives were synthesized and assayed against purified NOS isoforms. 5-Cyano compounds are especially potent and selective rat and human nNOS inhibitors. Activity and selectivity are mediated by the binding of the cyano group to a new auxiliary pocket in nNOS. Potency was enhanced by methylation of the quinoline and by introduction of simple chiral moieties, resulting in a combination of hydrophobic and auxiliary pocket effects that yielded high (∼500-fold) n/e selectivity. Importantly, the Caco-2 assay also revealed improved membrane permeability over previous compounds.

  18. Seletividade de herbicidas para cebola em semeadura direta Selectivity of herbicides for onions in direct sowing

    Lino R. Ferreira

    1999-04-01

    Full Text Available As plantas de cebola provenientes da semeadura direta, têm-se mostrado muito sensíveis aos herbicidas recomendados para a cultura transplantada, principalmente aqueles com ação sobre plantas daninhas dicotiledôneas. Os efeitos do fracionamento da dose dos herbicidas oxyfluorfen, ioxynil-octanoato, fluazifop-p-butil e sethoxydim foram avaliados em dois cultivares (Granex Ouro e Granex 33, no sistema de semeadura direta. A tolerância dos dois cultivares ao oxyfluorfen e ao ioxynil-octanoato aumentou com a idade das plantas e com o parcelamento das doses, aplicando-se doses menores no estádio de duas folhas. Sethoxydim e fluazifop-p-butil foram seletivos para a cultura, independente da dose inicial aplicada e do cultivar avaliado.The plants of onions, from direct sowing, have shown to be quite sensitive toward herbicides recommended for transplanted culture, especially those acting on dycotiledoneous weeds. The effects of dose fractionating of herbicides oxyfluorfen, ioxynil-octanoato, fluazifop-p-butil and sethoxydim were evaluated in two cultivars (Granex Ouro and Granex 33, in the direct sowing system. The tolerance of the two cultivars toward oxyfluorfen and ioxynyl-octanoato increased with the plants age and with the parceling of the doses, applying smaller doses in the two leaves stage. Sethoxydim and fluazifop-p-butyl were selective for the culture, regardless of the applied initial doses and the evaluated cultivar.

  19. Fast bi-directional prediction selection in H.264/MPEG-4 AVC temporal scalable video coding.

    Lin, Hung-Chih; Hang, Hsueh-Ming; Peng, Wen-Hsiao

    2011-12-01

    In this paper, we propose a fast algorithm that efficiently selects the temporal prediction type for the dyadic hierarchical-B prediction structure in the H.264/MPEG-4 temporal scalable video coding (SVC). We make use of the strong correlations in prediction type inheritance to eliminate the superfluous computations for the bi-directional (BI) prediction in the finer partitions, 16×8/8×16/8×8 , by referring to the best temporal prediction type of 16 × 16. In addition, we carefully examine the relationship in motion bit-rate costs and distortions between the BI and the uni-directional temporal prediction types. As a result, we construct a set of adaptive thresholds to remove the unnecessary BI calculations. Moreover, for the block partitions smaller than 8 × 8, either the forward prediction (FW) or the backward prediction (BW) is skipped based upon the information of their 8 × 8 partitions. Hence, the proposed schemes can efficiently reduce the extensive computational burden in calculating the BI prediction. As compared to the JSVM 9.11 software, our method saves the encoding time from 48% to 67% for a large variety of test videos over a wide range of coding bit-rates and has only a minor coding performance loss. © 2011 IEEE

  20. Direct-aperture optimization applied to selection of beam orientations in intensity-modulated radiation therapy

    Bedford, J L; Webb, S

    2007-01-01

    Direct-aperture optimization (DAO) was applied to iterative beam-orientation selection in intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT), so as to ensure a realistic segmental treatment plan at each iteration. Nested optimization engines dealt separately with gantry angles, couch angles, collimator angles, segment shapes, segment weights and wedge angles. Each optimization engine performed a random search with successively narrowing step sizes. For optimization of segment shapes, the filtered backprojection (FBP) method was first used to determine desired fluence, the fluence map was segmented, and then constrained direct-aperture optimization was used thereafter. Segment shapes were fully optimized when a beam angle was perturbed, and minimally re-optimized otherwise. The algorithm was compared with a previously reported method using FBP alone at each orientation iteration. An example case consisting of a cylindrical phantom with a hemi-annular planning target volume (PTV) showed that for three-field plans, the method performed better than when using FBP alone, but for five or more fields, neither method provided much benefit over equally spaced beams. For a prostate case, improved bladder sparing was achieved through the use of the new algorithm. A plan for partial scalp treatment showed slightly improved PTV coverage and lower irradiated volume of brain with the new method compared to FBP alone. It is concluded that, although the method is computationally intensive and not suitable for searching large unconstrained regions of beam space, it can be used effectively in conjunction with prior class solutions to provide individually optimized IMRT treatment plans

  1. Selection of doublet cellular patterns in directional solidification through spatially periodic perturbations

    Losert, W.; Stillman, D.A.; Cummins, H.Z.; Kopczynski, P.; Rappel, W.; Karma, A.

    1998-01-01

    Pattern formation at the solid-liquid interface of a growing crystal was studied in directional solidification using a perturbation technique. We analyzed both experimentally and numerically the stability range and dynamical selection of cellular arrays of 'doublets' with asymmetric tip shapes, separated by alternate deep and shallow grooves. Applying an initial periodic perturbation of arbitrary wavelength to the unstable planar interface allowed us to force the interface to evolve into doublet states that would not otherwise be dynamically accessible from a planar interface. We determined systematically the ranges of wavelength corresponding to stable singlets, stable doublets, and transient unstable patterns. Experimentally, this was accomplished by applying a brief UV light pulse of a desired spatial periodicity to the planar interface during the planar-cellular transient using the model alloy Succinonitrile-Coumarin 152. Numerical simulations of the nonlinear evolution of the interface were performed starting from a small sinusoidal perturbation of the steady-state planar interface. These simulations were carried out using a computationally efficient phase-field symmetric model of directional solidification with recently reformulated asymptotics and vanishing kinetics [A. Karma and W.-J. Rappel, Phys. Rev. E 53 R3017 (1996); Phys. Rev. Lett. 77, 4050 (1996); Phys. Rev. E 57, 4323 (1998)], which allowed us to simulate spatially extended arrays that can be meaningfully compared to experiments. Simulations and experiments show remarkable qualitative agreement in the dynamic evolution, steady-state structure, and instability mechanisms of doublet cellular arrays. copyright 1998 The American Physical Society

  2. Conditional Viral Tract Tracing Delineates the Projections of the Distinct Kisspeptin Neuron Populations to Gonadotropin-Releasing Hormone (GnRH) Neurons in the Mouse.

    Yip, Siew Hoong; Boehm, Ulrich; Herbison, Allan E; Campbell, Rebecca E

    2015-07-01

    Kisspeptin neurons play an essential role in the regulation of fertility through direct regulation of the GnRH neurons. However, the relative contributions of the two functionally distinct kisspeptin neuron subpopulations to this critical regulation are not fully understood. Here we analyzed the specific projection patterns of kisspeptin neurons originating from either the rostral periventricular nucleus of the third ventricle (RP3V) or the arcuate nucleus (ARN) using a cell-specific, viral-mediated tract-tracing approach. We stereotaxically injected a Cre-dependent recombinant adenovirus encoding farnesylated enhanced green fluorescent protein into the ARN or RP3V of adult male and female mice expressing Cre recombinase in kisspeptin neurons. Fibers from ARN kisspeptin neurons projected widely; however, we did not find any evidence for direct contact with GnRH neuron somata or proximal dendrites in either sex. In contrast, we identified RP3V kisspeptin fibers in close contact with GnRH neuron somata and dendrites in both sexes. Fibers originating from both the RP3V and ARN were observed in close contact with distal GnRH neuron processes in the ARN and in the lateral and internal aspects of the median eminence. Furthermore, GnRH nerve terminals were found in close contact with the proximal dendrites of ARN kisspeptin neurons in the ARN, and ARN kisspeptin fibers were found contacting RP3V kisspeptin neurons in both sexes. Together these data delineate selective zones of kisspeptin neuron inputs to GnRH neurons and demonstrate complex interconnections between the distinct kisspeptin populations and GnRH neurons.

  3. Direct effects of glucose, insulin, GLP-1, and GIP on bulbospinal neurons in the rostral ventrolateral medulla in neonatal wistar rats.

    Oshima, Naoki; Onimaru, Hiroshi; Matsubara, Hidehito; Uchida, Takahiro; Watanabe, Atsushi; Imakiire, Toshihiko; Nishida, Yasuhiro; Kumagai, Hiroo

    2017-03-06

    Although patients with diabetes mellitus (DM) often exhibit hypertension, the mechanisms responsible for this correlation are not well known. We hypothesized that the bulbospinal neurons in the rostral ventrolateral medulla (RVLM) are affected by the levels of glucose, insulin, or incretins (glucagon like peptide-1 [GLP-1] or glucose-dependent insulinotropic peptide [GIP]) in patients with DM. To investigate whether RVLM neurons are activated by glucose, insulin, GLP-1, or GIP, we examined changes in the membrane potentials of bulbospinal RVLM neurons using whole-cell patch-clamp technique during superfusion with various levels of glucose or these hormones in neonatal Wistar rats. A brainstem-spinal cord preparation was used for the experiments. A low level of glucose stimulated bulbospinal RVLM neurons. During insulin superfusion, almost all the RVLM neurons were depolarized, while during GLP-1 or GIP superfusion, almost all the RVLM neurons were hyperpolarized. Next, histological examinations were performed to examine transporters for glucose and receptors for insulin, GLP-1, and GIP on RVLM neurons. Low-level glucose-depolarized RVLM neurons exhibited the presence of glucose transporter 3 (GLUT3). Meanwhile, insulin-depolarized, GLP-1-hyperpolarized, and GIP-hyperpolarized RVLM neurons showed each of the respective specific receptor. These results indicate that a low level of glucose stimulates bulbospinal RVLM neurons via specific transporters on these neurons, inducing hypertension. Furthermore, an increase in insulin or a reduction in incretins may also activate the sympathetic nervous system and induce hypertension by activating RVLM neurons via their own receptors. Copyright © 2016 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  4. Forced phase-locked states and information retrieval in a two-layer network of oscillatory neurons with directional connectivity

    Kazantsev, Victor; Pimashkin, Alexey

    2007-01-01

    We propose two-layer architecture of associative memory oscillatory network with directional interlayer connectivity. The network is capable to store information in the form of phase-locked (in-phase and antiphase) oscillatory patterns. The first (input) layer takes an input pattern to be recognized and their units are unidirectionally connected with all units of the second (control) layer. The connection strengths are weighted using the Hebbian rule. The output (retrieved) patterns appear as forced-phase locked states of the control layer. The conditions are found and analytically expressed for pattern retrieval in response on incoming stimulus. It is shown that the system is capable to recover patterns with a certain level of distortions or noises in their profiles. The architecture is implemented with the Kuramoto phase model and using synaptically coupled neural oscillators with spikes. It is found that the spiking model is capable to retrieve patterns using the spiking phase that translates memorized patterns into the spiking phase shifts at different time scales

  5. Dual platinum and pyrrolidine catalysis in the direct alkylation of allylic alcohols: selective synthesis of monoallylation products.

    Shibuya, Ryozo; Lin, Lu; Nakahara, Yasuhito; Mashima, Kazushi; Ohshima, Takashi

    2014-04-22

    A dual platinum- and pyrrolidine-catalyzed direct allylic alkylation of allylic alcohols with various active methylene compounds to produce products with high monoallylation selectivity was developed. The use of pyrrolidine and acetic acid was essential, not only for preventing undesirable side reactions, but also for obtaining high monoallylation selectivity. © 2014 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  6. Binaural interaction in low-frequency neurons in inferior colliculus of the cat. II. Effects of changing rate and direction of interaural phase.

    Yin, T C; Kuwada, S

    1983-10-01

    We used the binaural beat stimulus to study the interaural phase sensitivity of inferior colliculus (IC) neurons in the cat. The binaural beat, produced by delivering tones of slightly different frequencies to the two ears, generates continuous and graded changes in interaural phase. Over 90% of the cells that exhibit a sensitivity to changes in the interaural delay also show a sensitivity to interaural phase disparities with the binaural beat. Cells respond with a burst of impulses with each complete cycle of the beat frequency. The period histogram obtained by binning the poststimulus time histogram on the beat frequency gives a measure of the interaural phase sensitivity of the cell. In general, there is good correspondence in the shapes of the period histograms generated from binaural beats and the interaural phase curves derived from interaural delays and in the mean interaural phase angle calculated from them. The magnitude of the beat frequency determines the rate of change of interaural phase and the sign determines the direction of phase change. While most cells respond in a phase-locked manner up to beat frequencies of 10 Hz, there are some cells tht will phase lock up to 80 Hz. Beat frequency and mean interaural phase angle are linearly related for most cells. Most cells respond equally in the two directions of phase change and with different rates of change, at least up to 10 Hz. However, some IC cells exhibit marked sensitivity to the speed of phase change, either responding more vigorously at low beat frequencies or at high beat frequencies. In addition, other cells demonstrate a clear directional sensitivity. The cells that show sensitivity to the direction and speed of phase changes would be expected to demonstrate a sensitivity to moving sound sources in the free field. Changes in the mean interaural phase of the binaural beat period histograms are used to determine the effects of changes in average and interaural intensity on the phase sensitivity

  7. Serotonin 2A receptor regulation of striatal neuropeptide gene expression is selective for tachykinin, but not enkephalin neurons following dopamine depletion.

    Basura, G J; Walker, P D

    2001-08-15

    Serotonin (5-HT) 2A receptor-mediated regulation of striatal preprotachykinin (PPT) and preproenkephalin (PPE) mRNAs was studied in adult rodents that had been subjected to near-total dopamine (DA) depletion as neonates. Two months following bilateral 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) lesion, PPT mRNA levels decreased 59-73% across dorsal subregions of the rostral and caudal striatum while PPE transcripts increased 61-94%. Four hours after a single injection of the serotonin 2A/2C receptor agonist, (+/-)-1-(2,5-Dimethoxy-4-iodophenyl)-2-aminopropane (DOI; 1 mg/kg), PPT mRNA expression was significantly increased in DA-depleted rats across all dorsal subregions of the rostral and caudal striatum as compared to 6-OHDA-treated animals alone. In the intact rat, DOI did not influence PPT mRNA levels in the rostral striatum, but did raise expression in the caudal striatum where 5-HT2A receptors are prominent. DOI did not regulate PPE mRNA levels in any striatal sub-region of the intact or DA-depleted rat. Prior administration of the 5-HT2A/2C receptor antagonist, ritanserin (1 mg/kg) or the 5-HT2A receptor antagonist, ketanserin (1 mg/kg) completely blocked the DOI-induced increases in striatal PPT mRNA in both lesioned and intact animals. The ability of ketanserin to produce identical results as ritanserin suggests that 5-HT2A receptor-mediated regulation is selectively strengthened within tachykinin neurons of the rostral striatum which are suppressed by DA depletion. The selectivity suggests that 5-HT2A receptor upregulation following DA depletion is capable of regulating tachykinin biosynthesis without influencing enkephalin expression in striatal output neurons.

  8. Response of cat inferior colliculus neurons to binaural beat stimuli: possible mechanisms for sound localization.

    Kuwada, S; Yin, T C; Wickesberg, R E

    1979-11-02

    The interaural phase sensitivity of neurons was studied through the use of binaural beat stimuli. The response of most cells was phase-locked to the beat frequency, which provides a possible neural correlate to the human sensation of binaural beats. In addition, this stimulus allowed the direction and rate of interaural phase change to be varied. Some neurons in our sample responded selectively to manipulations of these two variables, which suggests a sensitivity to direction or speed of movement.

  9. Phase selection and microstructure in directional solidification of glass forming Pd-Si-Cu alloys

    Huo, Yang

    Phase selection and microstructure formation during the rapid solidification of alloy melts has been a topic of substantial interest over the last several decades, attributed mainly to the access to novel structures involving metastable crystalline and non-crystalline phases. In this work, Bridgeman type directional solidification was conducted in Pd-Si-Cu glass forming system to study such cooling rate dependent phase transition and microstructure formation. The equilibrium state for Pd-Si-Cu ternary system was investigated through three different works. First of all, phase stabilities for Pd-Si binary system was accessed with respects of first-principles and experiments, showing Pd5Si, Pd9Si2, Pd3Si and Pd 2Si phase are stable all way to zero Kevin while PdSi phase is a high temperature stable phase, and Pd2Si phase with Fe2P is a non-stoichiometry phase. A thermodynamic database was developed for Pd-Si system. Second, crystal structures for compounds with ternary compositions were studied by XRD, SEM and TEM, showing ordered and disordered B2/bcc phases are stable in Pd-rich part. At last, based on many phase equilibria and phase transitions data, a comprehensive thermodynamic discrption for Pd-Si-Cu ternary system was first time to be developed, from which different phase diagrams and driving force for kinetics can be calculated. Phase selection and microstructure formation in directional solidification of the best glass forming composition, Pd 77.5Si16.5Cu6, in this system with growth velocities from 0.005 to 7.5mm/s was systematically studied and the solidification pathways at different conditions were interpreted from thermodynamic simulation. The results show that for growth velocities are smaller than 0.1mm/s Pd 3Si phase is primary phase and Pd9Si2 phase is secondary phase, the difficulty for Pd9Si2 phase nucleation gives rise to the formation of two different eutectic structure. For growth velocities between 0.4 and 1mm/s, instead of Pd3Si phase, Pd9Si2

  10. Template-directed ligation of tethered mononucleotides by t4 DNA ligase for kinase ribozyme selection.

    David G Nickens

    used as the tethered nucleotide. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our results reveal a novel activity for T4 DNA ligase (template-directed ligation of a tethered mononucleotide and establish this partition scheme as being suitable for the selection of ribozymes that phosphorylate mononucleoside substrates.

  11. Economic valuation of selected direct and indirect use values of the Makgadikgadi wetland system, Botswana

    Setlhogile, Tshepo; Arntzen, Jaap; Mabiza, Collin; Mano, Reneth

    Economic valuation of wetlands aims to investigate public preferences for changes in the state of the wetland and the natural resources it constitutes in monetary terms. It provides a means of quantifying the direct and indirect benefits that people derive from wetlands. In addition, it informs management planning and practice about resource options, optimal allocation and also provides information for conservation of the resource. The Makgadikgadi wetland is a unique system that mostly consists of dry pans during most of the year. This study aimed at estimating the value of groundwater recharge and community-based natural resource management (CBNRM) activities within the Makgadikgadi wetland and how these goods and services contribute to the local and national economy. The study used the Total Economic Valuation approach, which considers both the direct and indirect use values of the resource. In essence, the study concentrated on one direct use value (use of resources through CBNRM) and one indirect use value (groundwater recharge). With regard to CBNRM, three community-based organisations (CBOs) were selected for the study and static and dynamic cost-benefit models for these CBOs were developed. The groundwater recharge value was largely determined through desktop review and interviews with stakeholders. The results indicate a small positive contribution of CBOs towards the economy of Botswana and a high potential for communities to derive substantial benefits from the projects because currently benefits realised by communities are limited. CBOs involved in joint venture partnerships with tourism and hunting enterprises benefit more from utilising the wetland’s resources. Groundwater recharge often occurs in areas away from the physical location of the wetland and may not be easily attributable to the wetland. However, the study assessed the value taking into consideration the various sectors which rely on the groundwater resource. The groundwater recharge

  12. Encoding of Spatial Attention by Primate Prefrontal Cortex Neuronal Ensembles

    Treue, Stefan

    2018-01-01

    Abstract Single neurons in the primate lateral prefrontal cortex (LPFC) encode information about the allocation of visual attention and the features of visual stimuli. However, how this compares to the performance of neuronal ensembles at encoding the same information is poorly understood. Here, we recorded the responses of neuronal ensembles in the LPFC of two macaque monkeys while they performed a task that required attending to one of two moving random dot patterns positioned in different hemifields and ignoring the other pattern. We found single units selective for the location of the attended stimulus as well as for its motion direction. To determine the coding of both variables in the population of recorded units, we used a linear classifier and progressively built neuronal ensembles by iteratively adding units according to their individual performance (best single units), or by iteratively adding units based on their contribution to the ensemble performance (best ensemble). For both methods, ensembles of relatively small sizes (n decoding performance relative to individual single units. However, the decoder reached similar performance using fewer neurons with the best ensemble building method compared with the best single units method. Our results indicate that neuronal ensembles within the LPFC encode more information about the attended spatial and nonspatial features of visual stimuli than individual neurons. They further suggest that efficient coding of attention can be achieved by relatively small neuronal ensembles characterized by a certain relationship between signal and noise correlation structures. PMID:29568798

  13. Repeated Thermal Stress, Shading, and Directional Selection in the Florida Reef Tract

    Robert van Woesik

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Over the last three decades reef corals have been subjected to an unprecedented frequency and intensity of thermal-stress events, which have led to extensive coral bleaching, disease, and mortality. Over the next century, the climate is predicted to drive sea-surface temperatures to even higher levels, consequently increasing the risk of mass bleaching and disease outbreaks. Yet, there is considerable temporal and spatial variation in coral bleaching and in disease prevalence. Using data collected from 2,398 sites along the Florida reef tract from 2005 to 2015, this study examined the temporal and spatial patterns of coral bleaching and disease in relation to coral-colony size, depth, temperature, and chlorophyll-a concentrations. The results show that coral bleaching was most prevalent during the warmest years in 2014 and 2015, and disease was also most prevalent in 2010, 2014, and 2015. Although the majority of the corals surveyed were found in habitats with low chlorophyll-a concentrations, and high irradiance, these same habitats showed the highest prevalence of coral bleaching and disease outbreaks during thermal-stress events. These results suggest that directional selection in a warming ocean may favor corals able to tolerate inshore, shaded environments with high turbidity and productivity.

  14. Highly sensitive and selective cholesterol biosensor based on direct electron transfer of hemoglobin.

    Zhao, Changzhi; Wan, Li; Jiang, Li; Wang, Qin; Jiao, Kui

    2008-12-01

    A cholesterol biosensor based on direct electron transfer of a hemoglobin-encapsulated chitosan-modified glassy carbon electrode has been developed for highly sensitive and selective analysis of serum samples. Modified by films containing hemoglobin and cholesterol oxidase, the electrode was prepared by encapsulation of enzyme in chitosan matrix. The hydrogen peroxide produced by the catalytic oxidation of cholesterol by cholesterol oxidase was reduced electrocatalytically by immobilized hemoglobin and used to obtain a sensitive amperometric response to cholesterol. The linear response of cholesterol concentrations ranged from 1.00 x 10(-5) to 6.00 x 10(-4) mol/L, with a correlation coefficient of 0.9969 and estimated detection limit of cholesterol of 9.5 micromol/L at a signal/noise ratio of 3. The cholesterol biosensor can efficiently exclude interference by the commonly coexisting ascorbic acid, uric acid, dopamine, and epinephrine. The sensitivity to the change in the concentration of cholesterol as the slope of the calibration curve was 0.596 A/M. The relative standard deviation was under 4.0% (n=5) for the determination of real samples. The biosensor is satisfactory in the determination of human serum samples.

  15. The effects of stabilizing and directional selection on phenotypic and genotypic variation in a population of RNA enzymes.

    Hayden, Eric J; Bratulic, Sinisa; Koenig, Iwo; Ferrada, Evandro; Wagner, Andreas

    2014-02-01

    The distribution of variation in a quantitative trait and its underlying distribution of genotypic diversity can both be shaped by stabilizing and directional selection. Understanding either distribution is important, because it determines a population's response to natural selection. Unfortunately, existing theory makes conflicting predictions about how selection shapes these distributions, and very little pertinent experimental evidence exists. Here we study a simple genetic system, an evolving RNA enzyme (ribozyme) in which a combination of high throughput genotyping and measurement of a biochemical phenotype allow us to address this question. We show that directional selection, compared to stabilizing selection, increases the genotypic diversity of an evolving ribozyme population. In contrast, it leaves the variance in the phenotypic trait unchanged.

  16. Genomic signatures of local directional selection in a high gene flow marine organism, the Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua)

    Eg Nielsen, Einar; Hansen, Jakob Hemmer; Poulsen, Nina Aagaard

    2009-01-01

    -associated single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) for evidence of selection in local populations of Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua L.) across the species distribution. Results: Our global genome scan analysis identified eight outlier gene loci with very high statistical support, likely to be subject to directional...... selection in local demes, or closely linked to loci under selection. Likewise, on a regional south/north transect of central and eastern Atlantic populations, seven loci displayed strongly elevated levels of genetic differentiation. Selection patterns among populations appeared to be relatively widespread...

  17. Effect of netting direction and number of meshes around on size selection in the codend for Baltic cod (Gadus morhua)

    Wienbeck, Harald; Herrmann, Bent; Moderhak, Waldemar

    2011-01-01

    We investigated experimentally the effect that turning the netting direction 90° (T90) and halving the number of meshes around in the circumference in a diamond mesh codend had on size selection of Baltic cod. The results generally agreed with predictions of a previous simulation-based study. Both...... modifications had a significant positive effect on the size selection of cod. The best selection results were obtained for a codend in which both factors were applied together. For that codend, very little between-haul variation in cod size selection was detected, especially compared to the reference codend...

  18. Nanoscale layer-selective readout of magnetization direction from a magnetic multilayer using a spin-torque oscillator

    Suto, Hirofumi; Nagasawa, Tazumi; Kudo, Kiwamu; Mizushima, Koichi; Sato, Rie

    2014-01-01

    Technology for detecting the magnetization direction of nanoscale magnetic material is crucial for realizing high-density magnetic recording devices. Conventionally, a magnetoresistive device is used that changes its resistivity in accordance with the direction of the stray field from an objective magnet. However, when several magnets are near such a device, the superposition of stray fields from all the magnets acts on the sensor, preventing selective recognition of their individual magnetization directions. Here we introduce a novel readout method for detecting the magnetization direction of a nanoscale magnet by use of a spin-torque oscillator (STO). The principles behind this method are dynamic dipolar coupling between an STO and a nanoscale magnet, and detection of ferromagnetic resonance (FMR) of this coupled system from the STO signal. Because the STO couples with a specific magnet by tuning the STO oscillation frequency to match its FMR frequency, this readout method can selectively determine the magnetization direction of the magnet. (papers)

  19. Bayesian estimation of direct and correlated responses to selection on linear or ratio expressions of feed efficiency in pigs

    Shirali, Mahmoud; Varley, Patrick Francis; Jensen, Just

    2018-01-01

    meat percentage (LMP) along with the derived traits of RFI and FCR; and (3) deriving Bayesian estimates of direct and correlated responses to selection on RFI, FCR, ADG, ADFI, and LMP. Response to selection was defined as the difference in additive genetic mean of the selected top individuals, expected......, respectively. Selection against RFIG showed a direct response of − 0.16 kg/d and correlated responses of − 0.16 kg/kg for FCR and − 0.15 kg/d for ADFI, with no effect on other production traits. Selection against FCR resulted in a direct response of − 0.17 kg/kg and correlated responses of − 0.14 kg/d for RFIG......, − 0.18 kg/d for ADFI, and 0.98% for LMP. Conclusions: The Bayesian methodology developed here enables prediction of breeding values for FCR and RFI from a single multi-variate model. In addition, we derived posterior distributions of direct and correlated responses to selection. Genetic parameter...

  20. A genome-wide scan for signatures of directional selection in domesticated pigs

    Moon, S.; Kim, T.H.; Lee, K.T.; Kwak, W.; Lee, T.; Lee, S.W.; Kim, M.J.; Cho, K.; Kim, N.; Chung, W.H.; Sung, S.; Park, T.; Cho, S.; Groenen, M.A.M.; Nielsen, R.; Kim, Y.; Kim, H.

    2015-01-01

    Background: Animal domestication involved drastic phenotypic changes driven by strong artificial selection and also resulted in new populations of breeds, established by humans. This study aims to identify genes that show evidence of recent artificial selection during pig domestication. Results:

  1. Sexual dimorphism and directional sexual selection on aposematic signals in a poison frog

    Maan, Martine E.; Cummings, Molly E.

    2009-01-01

    It is commonly assumed that natural selection imposed by predators is the prevailing force driving the evolution of aposematic traits. Here, we demonstrate that aposematic signals are shaped by sexual selection as well. We evaluated sexual selection for coloration brightness in populations of the

  2. Rapid selective metal patterning on polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) fabricated by capillarity-assisted laser direct write

    Lee, Ming-Tsang; Lee, Daeho; Sherry, Alexander; Grigoropoulos, Costas P

    2011-01-01

    direct write (LDW) technology. To achieve good metal film quality, a capillarity-assisted laser direct writing (CALDW) of nanoparticle suspensions on a low surface energy material (PDMS) was utilized. Experimental results showed controllable electrical

  3. Directing reaction pathways by catalyst active-site selection using self-assembled monolayers.

    Pang, Simon H; Schoenbaum, Carolyn A; Schwartz, Daniel K; Medlin, J Will

    2013-01-01

    One key route for controlling reaction selectivity in heterogeneous catalysis is to prepare catalysts that exhibit only specific types of sites required for desired product formation. Here we show that alkanethiolate self-assembled monolayers with varying surface densities can be used to tune selectivity to desired hydrogenation and hydrodeoxygenation products during the reaction of furfural on supported palladium catalysts. Vibrational spectroscopic studies demonstrate that the selectivity improvement is achieved by controlling the availability of specific sites for the hydrogenation of furfural on supported palladium catalysts through the selection of an appropriate alkanethiolate. Increasing self-assembled monolayer density by controlling the steric bulk of the organic tail ligand restricts adsorption on terrace sites and dramatically increases selectivity to desired products furfuryl alcohol and methylfuran. This technique of active-site selection simultaneously serves both to enhance selectivity and provide insight into the reaction mechanism.

  4. In vitro pharmacological characterization of a novel selective alpha7 neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonist ABT-107.

    Malysz, John; Anderson, David J; Grønlien, Jens H; Ji, Jianguo; Bunnelle, William H; Håkerud, Monika; Thorin-Hagene, Kirten; Ween, Hilde; Helfrich, Rosalind; Hu, Min; Gubbins, Earl; Gopalakrishnan, Sujatha; Puttfarcken, Pamela S; Briggs, Clark A; Li, Jinhe; Meyer, Michael D; Dyhring, Tino; Ahring, Philip K; Nielsen, Elsebet Ø; Peters, Dan; Timmermann, Daniel B; Gopalakrishnan, Murali

    2010-09-01

    Enhancement of alpha7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (nAChR) activity is considered a therapeutic approach for ameliorating cognitive deficits present in Alzheimer's disease and schizophrenia. In this study, we describe the in vitro profile of a novel selective alpha7 nAChR agonist, 5-(6-[(3R)-1-azabicyclo[2,2,2]oct-3-yloxy]pyridazin-3-yl)-1H-indole (ABT-107). ABT-107 displayed high affinity binding to alpha7 nAChRs [rat or human cortex, [(3)H](1S,4S)-2,2-dimethyl-5-(6-phenylpyridazin-3-yl)-5-aza-2-azoniabicyclo[2.2.1]heptane (A-585539), K(i) = 0.2-0.6 nM or [(3)H]methyllycaconitine (MLA), 7 nM] that was at least 100-fold selective versus non-alpha7 nAChRs and other receptors. Functionally, ABT-107 did not evoke detectible currents in Xenopus oocytes expressing human or nonhuman alpha3beta4, chimeric (alpha6/alpha3)beta4, or 5-HT(3A) receptors, and weak or negligible Ca(2+) responses in human neuroblastoma IMR-32 cells (alpha3* function) and human alpha4beta2 and alpha4beta4 nAChRs expressed in human embryonic kidney 293 cells. ABT-107 potently evoked human and rat alpha7 nAChR current responses in oocytes (EC(50), 50-90 nM total charge, approximately 80% normalized to acetylcholine) that were enhanced by the positive allosteric modulator (PAM) 4-[5-(4-chloro-phenyl)-2-methyl-3-propionyl-pyrrol-1-yl]-benzenesulfonamide (A-867744). In rat hippocampus, ABT-107 alone evoked alpha7-like currents, which were inhibited by the alpha7 antagonist MLA. In dentate gyrus granule cells, ABT-107 enhanced spontaneous inhibitory postsynaptic current activity when coapplied with A-867744. In the presence of an alpha7 PAM [A-867744 or N-[(3R)-1-azabicyclo[2.2.2]oct-3-yl]-4-chlorobenzamide hydrochloride (PNU-120596)], the addition of ABT-107 elicited MLA-sensitive alpha7 nAChR-mediated Ca(2+) signals in IMR-32 cells and rat cortical cultures and enhanced extracellular signal-regulated kinase phosphorylation in differentiated PC-12 cells. ABT-107 was also effective in protecting rat

  5. Evolution of the additive genetic variance–covariance matrix under continuous directional selection on a complex behavioural phenotype

    Careau, Vincent; Wolak, Matthew E.; Carter, Patrick A.; Garland, Theodore

    2015-01-01

    Given the pace at which human-induced environmental changes occur, a pressing challenge is to determine the speed with which selection can drive evolutionary change. A key determinant of adaptive response to multivariate phenotypic selection is the additive genetic variance–covariance matrix (G). Yet knowledge of G in a population experiencing new or altered selection is not sufficient to predict selection response because G itself evolves in ways that are poorly understood. We experimentally evaluated changes in G when closely related behavioural traits experience continuous directional selection. We applied the genetic covariance tensor approach to a large dataset (n = 17 328 individuals) from a replicated, 31-generation artificial selection experiment that bred mice for voluntary wheel running on days 5 and 6 of a 6-day test. Selection on this subset of G induced proportional changes across the matrix for all 6 days of running behaviour within the first four generations. The changes in G induced by selection resulted in a fourfold slower-than-predicted rate of response to selection. Thus, selection exacerbated constraints within G and limited future adaptive response, a phenomenon that could have profound consequences for populations facing rapid environmental change. PMID:26582016

  6. Evolution of the additive genetic variance-covariance matrix under continuous directional selection on a complex behavioural phenotype.

    Careau, Vincent; Wolak, Matthew E; Carter, Patrick A; Garland, Theodore

    2015-11-22

    Given the pace at which human-induced environmental changes occur, a pressing challenge is to determine the speed with which selection can drive evolutionary change. A key determinant of adaptive response to multivariate phenotypic selection is the additive genetic variance-covariance matrix ( G: ). Yet knowledge of G: in a population experiencing new or altered selection is not sufficient to predict selection response because G: itself evolves in ways that are poorly understood. We experimentally evaluated changes in G: when closely related behavioural traits experience continuous directional selection. We applied the genetic covariance tensor approach to a large dataset (n = 17 328 individuals) from a replicated, 31-generation artificial selection experiment that bred mice for voluntary wheel running on days 5 and 6 of a 6-day test. Selection on this subset of G: induced proportional changes across the matrix for all 6 days of running behaviour within the first four generations. The changes in G: induced by selection resulted in a fourfold slower-than-predicted rate of response to selection. Thus, selection exacerbated constraints within G: and limited future adaptive response, a phenomenon that could have profound consequences for populations facing rapid environmental change. © 2015 The Author(s).

  7. Direct and indirect selection responses for seed yield and its components in

    rasoul dehghan

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Breeding based on selection indices is an effective method for improving complex traits such as yield. To assess the efficiency of different selection method, 83 exotic along with 17 Iranian safflower genotypes were evaluated at the research farm of Isfahan University of Technology using 10×10 simple lattice design with three replications in 2011. In this study, the selection indices of Smith-Hazel and Pesek-Baker were determined based on the number of capitulum per plant, number of seeds per capitulum and 1000-seed weight. Also response to selection and relative selection efficiency were estimated for traits under study and seed yield. The highest estimated selection efficiency for genetic improvement of seed yield was obtained via selection for number of capitulum per plant. Therefore, this trait can be used as an appropriate selection criterion for improvement of seed yield. The results showed that seed yield was highly correlated with each of these indices and the estimated efficiency of indirect selection via these indices was relatively high. Thus, it seems that these selection indices can be effectively used for seed yield improvement. Results of present study showed that the efficiency of Smith-Hazel indices for simultaneous improvement of number of capitulum per plant, number of seeds per capitulum and 1000-seed weight was higher than that of Pesek-Baker index.

  8. Neuronal-glial trafficking

    Bachelard, H.S.

    2001-01-01

    Full text: The name 'glia' originates from the Greek word for glue, because astro glia (or astrocytes) were thought only to provide an anatomical framework for the electrically-excitable neurones. However, awareness that astrocytes perform vital roles in protecting the neurones, which they surround, emerged from evidence that they act as neuroprotective K + -sinks, and that they remove potentially toxic extracellular glutamate from the vicinity of the neurones. The astrocytes convert the glutamate to non-toxic glutamine which is returned to the neurones and used to replenish transmitter glutamate. This 'glutamate-glutamine cycle' (established in the 1960s by Berl and his colleagues) also contributes to protecting the neurones against a build-up of toxic ammonia. Glial cells also supply the neurones with components for free-radical scavenging glutathione. Recent studies have revealed that glial cells play a more positive interactive role in furnishing the neurones with fuels. Studies using radioactive 14 C, 13 C-MRS and 15 N-GCMS have revealed that glia produce alanine, lactate and proline for consumption by neurones, with increased formation of neurotransmitter glutamate. On neuronal activation the release of NH 4 + and glutamate from the neurones stimulates glucose uptake and glycolysis in the glia to produce more alanine, which can be regarded as an 'alanine-glutamate cycle' Use of 14 C-labelled precursors provided early evidence that neurotransmitter GABA may be partly derived from glial glutamine, and this has been confirmed recently in vivo by MRS isotopomer analysis of the GABA and glutamine labelled from 13 C-acetate. Relative rates of intermediary metabolism in glia and neurones can be calculated using a combination of [1- 13 C] glucose and [1,2- 13 C] acetate. When glutamate is released by neurones there is a net neuronal loss of TCA intermediates which have to be replenished. Part of this is derived from carboxylation of pyruvate, (pyruvate carboxylase

  9. Toward the development of the direct and selective detection of nitrates by a bioinspired Mo-Cu system.

    Marom, Hanit; Popowski, Yanay; Antonov, Svetlana; Gozin, Michael

    2011-10-21

    The development of a new platform for the direct and selective detection of nitrates is described. Two thioether-based chemosensors and the corresponding sulfoxides and sulfones were prepared, and their photophysical properties were evaluated. Upon selective sulfoxidation of these thioethers with nitrates via an oxygen-transfer reaction promoted by a bioinspired Mo-Cu system, significant fluorescence shifts were measured. A selective response of these systems, discriminating between nitrate salts and H(2)O(2), was also shown. © 2011 American Chemical Society

  10. The role of selective attention in short-term memory and goal-directed behavior

    Vissers, M.E.

    2018-01-01

    Selective attention enables the prioritization of goal-relevant aspects of our sensory environment in order to guide our actions, or to store goal-relevant information in short-term memory. Yet, it remains largely unclear how attention prioritizes goal-relevant information. For example, selective

  11. Directional Selection for Specific Sheep Cell Antibody Responses Affects Natural Rabbit Agglutinins of Chickens

    Cotter, P.F.; Ayoub, J.; Parmentier, H.K.

    2005-01-01

    Agglutination data from generations 8 through 19 indicate that bidirectional selection for specific SRBC antibody responses was successful in a line cross of ISA × Warren medium heavy layers. After 11 generations titers of the high SRBC selected line (H line) were nearly 1:32,000; those of the low

  12. Weldon's Search for a Direct Proof of Natural Selection and the ...

    Plants under Domestication in 1868, there was considerable dis- agreement about whether natural selection could indeed work the. Keywords. Evolution, struggle for existence, natural selection, type, variations, heredity, biometrics, Mendelism. way Darwin had suggested and be the driving engine of adap- tive evolution.

  13. Temporal-pattern recognition by single neurons in a sensory pathway devoted to social communication behavior.

    Carlson, Bruce A

    2009-07-29

    Sensory systems often encode stimulus information into the temporal pattern of action potential activity. However, little is known about how the information contained within these patterns is extracted by postsynaptic neurons. Similar to temporal coding by sensory neurons, social information in mormyrid fish is encoded into the temporal patterning of an electric organ discharge. In the current study, sensitivity to temporal patterns of electrosensory stimuli was found to arise within the midbrain posterior exterolateral nucleus (ELp). Whole-cell patch recordings from ELp neurons in vivo revealed three patterns of interpulse interval (IPI) tuning: low-pass neurons tuned to long intervals, high-pass neurons tuned to short intervals, and bandpass neurons tuned to intermediate intervals. Many neurons within each class also responded preferentially to either increasing or decreasing IPIs. Playback of electric signaling patterns recorded from freely behaving fish revealed that the IPI and direction tuning of ELp neurons resulted in selective responses to particular social communication displays characterized by distinct IPI patterns. The postsynaptic potential responses of many neurons indicated a combination of excitatory and inhibitory synaptic input, and the IPI tuning of ELp neurons was directly related to rate-dependent changes in the direction and amplitude of postsynaptic potentials. These results suggest that differences in the dynamics of short-term synaptic plasticity in excitatory and inhibitory pathways may tune central sensory neurons to particular temporal patterns of presynaptic activity. This may represent a general mechanism for the processing of behaviorally relevant stimulus information encoded into temporal patterns of activity by sensory neurons.

  14. Vasculo-Neuronal Coupling: Retrograde Vascular Communication to Brain Neurons.

    Kim, Ki Jung; Ramiro Diaz, Juan; Iddings, Jennifer A; Filosa, Jessica A

    2016-12-14

    Continuous cerebral blood flow is essential for neuronal survival, but whether vascular tone influences resting neuronal function is not known. Using a multidisciplinary approach in both rat and mice brain slices, we determined whether flow/pressure-evoked increases or decreases in parenchymal arteriole vascular tone, which result in arteriole constriction and dilation, respectively, altered resting cortical pyramidal neuron activity. We present evidence for intercellular communication in the brain involving a flow of information from vessel to astrocyte to neuron, a direction opposite to that of classic neurovascular coupling and referred to here as vasculo-neuronal coupling (VNC). Flow/pressure increases within parenchymal arterioles increased vascular tone and simultaneously decreased resting pyramidal neuron firing activity. On the other hand, flow/pressure decreases evoke parenchymal arteriole dilation and increased resting pyramidal neuron firing activity. In GLAST-CreERT2; R26-lsl-GCaMP3 mice, we demonstrate that increased parenchymal arteriole tone significantly increased intracellular calcium in perivascular astrocyte processes, the onset of astrocyte calcium changes preceded the inhibition of cortical pyramidal neuronal firing activity. During increases in parenchymal arteriole tone, the pyramidal neuron response was unaffected by blockers of nitric oxide, GABA A , glutamate, or ecto-ATPase. However, VNC was abrogated by TRPV4 channel, GABA B , as well as an adenosine A 1 receptor blocker. Differently to pyramidal neuron responses, increases in flow/pressure within parenchymal arterioles increased the firing activity of a subtype of interneuron. Together, these data suggest that VNC is a complex constitutive active process that enables neurons to efficiently adjust their resting activity according to brain perfusion levels, thus safeguarding cellular homeostasis by preventing mismatches between energy supply and demand. We present evidence for vessel-to-neuron

  15. tBuLi-Mediated One-Pot Direct Highly Selective Cross-Coupling of Two Distinct Aryl Bromides

    Vila, Carlos; Cembellin, Sara; Hornillos, Valentin; Giannerini, Massimo; Fananas-Mastral, Martin; Feringa, Ben L.

    2015-01-01

    A Pd-catalyzed direct cross-coupling of two distinct aryl bromides mediated by tBuLi is described. The use of [Pd-PEPPSI-IPr] or [Pd-PEPPSI-IPent] as catalyst allows for the efficient one-pot synthesis of unsymmetrical biaryls at room temperature. The key for this selective cross-coupling is the use

  16. Natural selection for earlier male arrival to breeding grounds through direct and indirect effects in a migratory songbird

    Velmala, William; Helle, Samuli; Ahola, Markus P.; Klaassen, M.R.J.; Lehikoinen, Esa; Rainio, Kalle; Sirkia, Paivi M.; Laaksonen, Toni

    2015-01-01

    For migratory birds, the earlier arrival of males to breeding grounds is often expected to have fitness benefits. However, the selection differential on male arrival time has rarely been decomposed into the direct effect of male arrival and potential indirect effects through female traits. We

  17. Using aspen for artist stretcher frames: adding value through quality service, direct marketing, and careful material selection

    Chris Polson

    2001-01-01

    Aspen wood, when carefully selected and kiln dried, makes excellent stock for artist stretcher frames. Direct marketing techniques including the Internet and word of mouth give access to national markets, providing a more diverse and stable customer base for operations from a rural area. High-quality service, as shown by product performance and rapid order fulfillment...

  18. A comparison of neuronal growth cone and cell body membrane: electrophysiological and ultrastructural properties.

    Guthrie, P B; Lee, R E; Kater, S B

    1989-10-01

    This study investigated a broad set of general electrophysiological and ultrastructural features of growth cone and cell body membrane of individual neurons where membrane from different regions of the same neuron can be directly compared. Growth cones were surgically isolated from identified adult Helisoma neurons in culture and compared with the cell body using whole-cell patch-clamp recording techniques. All isolated growth cones generated overshooting regenerative action potentials. Five neurons (buccal neurons B4, B5, and B19; pedal neurons P1 and P5) were selected that displayed distinctive action potential waveforms. In all cases, the growth cone action potential was indistinguishable from the cell body action potential and different from growth cones from other identified neurons. Two of these neurons (B5 and B19) were studied further using voltage-clamp procedures; growth cones and cell bodies again revealed major similarities within one neuron type and differences between neuron types. The only suggested difference between the growth cone and cell body was an apparent reduction in the magnitude of the A-current in the growth cone. Peak inward and outward current densities, as with other electrophysiological features, were different between neuron types, but were, again, similar between the growth cone and the cell body of the same neuron. Freeze-fracture analysis of intramembraneous particles (IMPs) was also performed on identified regions of the same neuron in culture. Both the density and the size distribution of IMPs were the same in growth cone, cell body, and neurite membranes. In these general electrophysiological and ultrastructural characteristics, therefore, growth cone membranes appear to retain the identity of the parent neuron cell body membrane.

  19. Selective impairment of verb processing associated with pathological changes in Brodmann areas 44 and 45 in the motor neurone disease-dementia-aphasia syndrome.

    Bak, T H; O'Donovan, D G; Xuereb, J H; Boniface, S; Hodges, J R

    2001-01-01

    We report six patients with clinically diagnosed and electrophysiologically confirmed motor neurone disease (MND), in whom communication problems were an early and dominant feature. All patients developed a progressive non-fluent aphasia culminating in some cases in complete mutism. In five cases, formal testing revealed deficits in syntactic comprehension. Comprehension and production of verbs were consistently more affected those that of nouns and this effect remained stable upon subsequent testing, despite overall deterioration. The classical signs of MND, including wasting, fasciculations and severe bulbar symptoms, occurred over the following 6-12 months. The behavioural symptoms ranged from mild anosognosia to personality change implicating frontal-lobe dementia. In three cases, post-mortem examination has confirmed the clinical diagnosis of MND-dementia. In addition to the typical involvement of motor and premotor cortex, particularly pronounced pathological changes were observed in the Brodmann areas 44 (Broca's area) and 45. The finding of a selective impairment of verb/action processing in association with the dementia/aphasia syndrome of MND suggests that the neural substrate underlying verb representation is strongly connected to anterior cortical motor systems.

  20. Strategies for Selecting Routes through Real-World Environments: Relative Topography, Initial Route Straightness, and Cardinal Direction.

    Tad T Brunyé

    Full Text Available Previous research has demonstrated that route planners use several reliable strategies for selecting between alternate routes. Strategies include selecting straight rather than winding routes leaving an origin, selecting generally south- rather than north-going routes, and selecting routes that avoid traversal of complex topography. The contribution of this paper is characterizing the relative influence and potential interactions of these strategies. We also examine whether individual differences would predict any strategy reliance. Results showed evidence for independent and additive influences of all three strategies, with a strong influence of topography and initial segment straightness, and relatively weak influence of cardinal direction. Additively, routes were also disproportionately selected when they traversed relatively flat regions, had relatively straight initial segments, and went generally south rather than north. Two individual differences, extraversion and sense of direction, predicted the extent of some effects. Under real-world conditions navigators indeed consider a route's initial straightness, cardinal direction, and topography, but these cues differ in relative influence and vary in their application across individuals.

  1. Direct transfer of viral and cellular proteins from varicella-zoster virus-infected non-neuronal cells to human axons.

    Grigoryan, Sergei; Yee, Michael B; Glick, Yair; Gerber, Doron; Kepten, Eldad; Garini, Yuval; Yang, In Hong; Kinchington, Paul R; Goldstein, Ronald S

    2015-01-01

    Varicella Zoster Virus (VZV), the alphaherpesvirus that causes varicella upon primary infection and Herpes zoster (shingles) following reactivation in latently infected neurons, is known to be fusogenic. It forms polynuclear syncytia in culture, in varicella skin lesions and in infected fetal human ganglia xenografted to mice. After axonal infection using VZV expressing green fluorescent protein (GFP) in compartmentalized microfluidic cultures there is diffuse filling of axons with GFP as well as punctate fluorescence corresponding to capsids. Use of viruses with fluorescent fusions to VZV proteins reveals that both proteins encoded by VZV genes and those of the infecting cell are transferred in bulk from infecting non-neuronal cells to axons. Similar transfer of protein to axons was observed following cell associated HSV1 infection. Fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) experiments provide evidence that this transfer is by diffusion of proteins from the infecting cells into axons. Time-lapse movies and immunocytochemical experiments in co-cultures demonstrate that non-neuronal cells fuse with neuronal somata and proteins from both cell types are present in the syncytia formed. The fusogenic nature of VZV therefore may enable not only conventional entry of virions and capsids into axonal endings in the skin by classical entry mechanisms, but also by cytoplasmic fusion that permits viral protein transfer to neurons in bulk.

  2. Tuberculosis diagnosis and multidrug resistance testing by direct sputum culture in selective broth without decontamination or centrifugation.

    Grandjean, Louis; Martin, Laura; Gilman, Robert H; Valencia, Teresa; Herrera, Beatriz; Quino, Willi; Ramos, Eric; Rivero, Maribel; Montoya, Rosario; Escombe, A Roderick; Coleman, David; Mitchison, Denis; Evans, Carlton A

    2008-07-01

    Tuberculosis culture usually requires sputum decontamination and centrifugation to prevent cultures from being overgrown by contaminating bacteria and fungi. However, decontamination destroys many tuberculous bacilli, and centrifugation often is not possible in resource-poor settings. We therefore assessed the performance of Mycobacterium tuberculosis culture with unprocessed samples plated directly by using tuberculosis-selective media and compared this procedure to conventional culture using centrifuge decontamination. Quadruplicate aliquots of strain H37RV were cultured in 7H9 broth with and without selective antimicrobials and after centrifuge decontamination. The subsequent comparison was made with 715 sputum samples. Split paired sputum samples were cultured conventionally with centrifuge decontamination and by direct culture in tuberculosis-selective media containing antibiotics. Centrifuge decontamination reduced tuberculosis H37RV colonies by 78% (P laboratories this deficit may be outweighed by the ease of use.

  3. The role of selective attention in short-term memory and goal-directed behavior

    Vissers, M.E.

    2018-01-01

    Selective attention enables the prioritization of goal-relevant aspects of our sensory environment in order to guide our actions, or to store goal-relevant information in short-term memory. Yet, it remains largely unclear how attention prioritizes goal-relevant information. For example, selective attention may enhance processing of goal-relevant information, suppress processing of distracting information, or both. The research presented in this dissertation examined the neurophysiological mec...

  4. Selective Attention Modulates the Direction of Audio-Visual Temporal Recalibration

    Ikumi, Nara; Soto-Faraco, Salvador

    2014-01-01

    Temporal recalibration of cross-modal synchrony has been proposed as a mechanism to compensate for timing differences between sensory modalities. However, far from the rich complexity of everyday life sensory environments, most studies to date have examined recalibration on isolated cross-modal pairings. Here, we hypothesize that selective attention might provide an effective filter to help resolve which stimuli are selected when multiple events compete for recalibration. We addressed this qu...

  5. Detecting consistent patterns of directional adaptation using differential selection codon models.

    Parto, Sahar; Lartillot, Nicolas

    2017-06-23

    Phylogenetic codon models are often used to characterize the selective regimes acting on protein-coding sequences. Recent methodological developments have led to models explicitly accounting for the interplay between mutation and selection, by modeling the amino acid fitness landscape along the sequence. However, thus far, most of these models have assumed that the fitness landscape is constant over time. Fluctuations of the fitness landscape may often be random or depend on complex and unknown factors. However, some organisms may be subject to systematic changes in selective pressure, resulting in reproducible molecular adaptations across independent lineages subject to similar conditions. Here, we introduce a codon-based differential selection model, which aims to detect and quantify the fine-grained consistent patterns of adaptation at the protein-coding level, as a function of external conditions experienced by the organism under investigation. The model parameterizes the global mutational pressure, as well as the site- and condition-specific amino acid selective preferences. This phylogenetic model is implemented in a Bayesian MCMC framework. After validation with simulations, we applied our method to a dataset of HIV sequences from patients with known HLA genetic background. Our differential selection model detects and characterizes differentially selected coding positions specifically associated with two different HLA alleles. Our differential selection model is able to identify consistent molecular adaptations as a function of repeated changes in the environment of the organism. These models can be applied to many other problems, ranging from viral adaptation to evolution of life-history strategies in plants or animals.

  6. Direct electron transfer: an approach for electrochemical biosensors with higher selectivity and sensitivity

    Freire Renato S.

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available The most promising approach for the development of electrochemical biosensors is to establish a direct electrical communication between the biomolecules and the electrode surface. This review focuses on advances, directions and strategies in the development of third generation electrochemical biosensors. Subjects covered include a brief description of the fundamentals of the electron transfer phenomenon and amperometric biosensor development (different types and new oriented enzyme immobilization techniques. Special attention is given to different redox enzymes and proteins capable of electrocatalyzing reactions via direct electron transfer. The analytical applications and future trends for third generation biosensors are also presented and discussed.

  7. Rapid selective metal patterning on polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) fabricated by capillarity-assisted laser direct write

    Lee, Ming-Tsang

    2011-08-12

    In this study we demonstrate a novel approach for the rapid fabricating micro scale metal (silver) patterning directly on a polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) substrate. Silver nanoparticles were sintered on PDMS to form conductive metal films using laser direct write (LDW) technology. To achieve good metal film quality, a capillarity-assisted laser direct writing (CALDW) of nanoparticle suspensions on a low surface energy material (PDMS) was utilized. Experimental results showed controllable electrical conductivities and good film properties of the sintered silver patterns. This study reveals an advanced method of metal patterning on PDMS, and proposes a new research application of LDW in a nanoparticle colloidal environment. © 2011 IOP Publishing Ltd.

  8. Effect of directional selection for body size on fluctuating asymmetry in certain morphological traits in Drosophila ananassae.

    Vishalakshi, C; Singh, B N

    2009-06-01

    Variation in the subtle differences between the right and left sides of bilateral characters or fluctuating asymmetry (FA) has been considered as an indicator of an organism's ability to cope with genetic and environmental stresses during development. However, due to inconsistency in the results of empirical studies, the relationship between FA and stress has been the subject of intense debate. In this study, we investigated whether stress caused by artificial bidirectional selection for body size has any effect on the levels of FA of different morphological traits in Drosophila ananassae. The realised heritability (h2) was higher in low-line females and high-line males, which suggests an asymmetrical response to selection for body size. Further, the levels of FA were compared across 10 generations of selection in different selection lines in both sexes for sternopleural bristle number, wing length, wing-to-thorax ratio, sex combtooth number and ovariole number. The levels of FA differed significantly among generations and selection lines but did not change markedly with directional selection. However, the levels of FA were higher in the G10 generation (at the end of selection) than G0 (at the start of selection) but lower than the G5 generation in different selection lines, suggesting that the levels of FA are not affected by the inbreeding generated during the course of selection. Also, the levels of FA in the hybrids of high and low lines were signifi cantly lower than the parental selection lines, suggesting that FA is influenced by hybridisation. These results are discussed in the framework of the literature available on FA and its relationship with stress.

  9. A high selectivity quaternized polysulfone membrane for alkaline direct methanol fuel cells

    Abuin, GC

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available polysulfone membrane for alkaline direct methanol fuel cells Graciela C. Abuina, Esteban A. Franceschinib, Patrick Nonjolac, Mkhulu K. Mathec, Mmalewane Modibedic, Horacio R. Cortib,* aCentro de Procesos Superficiales, Instituto Nacional de Tecnología...

  10. DIRECT VISUALIZATION OF THE DOPAMINE TRANSPORTER IN CULTURED NEWBORN RAT MIDBRAIN NEURONS USING THE FLUORESCENT COCAINE ANALOGUE JHC 1-64

    Rasmussen, Søren; Vægter, Christian Bjerggaard; Cha, J

    In this study we have established methods for visualization and tracking of the dopamine transporter (DAT) in cultured dopaminergic neurons in real time using a fluorescent cocaine analogue JHC 1-64 and confocal fluorescence microscopy. The initial binding experiments in HEK 293 cells stably...... 1-64 was prevented by excess concentrations of dopamine, cocaine, mazindol, or RTI-55, whereas the norepinephrine and/or serotonin transporter specific inhibitors desmethylimipramine and citalopram did not affect fluorescent labeling of the neurons. This strongly supports that JHC 1-64 specifically...

  11. Glucose-responsive neurons in the subfornical organ of the rat--a novel site for direct CNS monitoring of circulating glucose.

    Medeiros, N; Dai, L; Ferguson, A V

    2012-01-10

    Glucose-sensitive neurons have been identified in a number of CNS regions including metabolic control centers of the hypothalamus. The location of these regions behind the blood-brain barrier restricts them to sensing central, but not circulating glucose concentrations. In this study, we have used patch-clamp electrophysiology to examine whether neurons in a specialized region lacking the blood-brain barrier, the subfornical organ (SFO), are also glucose sensitive. In dissociated SFO neurons, altering the bath concentration of glucose (1 mM, 5 mM, 10 mM) influenced the excitability of 49% of neurons tested (n=67). Glucose-inhibited (GI) neurons depolarized in response to decreased glucose (n=10; mean, 4.6±1.0 mV) or hyperpolarized in response to increased glucose (n=8; mean,-4.4±0.8 mV). In contrast, glucose-excited (GE) neurons depolarized in response to increased glucose (n=9; mean, 6.4±0.4 mV) or hyperpolarized in response to decreased glucose (n=6; mean,-4.8±0.6 mV). Using voltage-clamp recordings, we also identified GI (outward current to increased glucose) and GE (inward current to increased glucose) SFO neurons. The mean glucose-induced inward current had a reversal potential of -24±12 mV (n=5), while GE responses were maintained during sodium-dependent glucose transporter inhibition, supporting the conclusion that GE properties result from the activation of a nonselective cation conductance (NSCC). The glucose-induced outward current had a mean reversal potential of -78±1.2 mV (n=5), while GI responses were not observed in the presence of glibenclamide, suggesting that these properties result from the modulation of K(ATP) channels. These data demonstrate that SFO neurons are glucose responsive, further emphasizing the potential roles of this circumventricular organ as an important sensor and integrator of circulating signals of energy status. Copyright © 2011 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. High efficiency direct thermal to electric energy conversion from radioisotope decay using selective emitters and spectrally tuned solar cells

    Chubb, Donald L.; Flood, Dennis J.; Lowe, Roland A.

    1993-01-01

    Thermophotovoltaic (TPV) systems are attractive possibilities for direct thermal-to-electric energy conversion, but have typically required the use of black body radiators operating at high temperatures. Recent advances in both the understanding and performance of solid rare-earth oxide selective emitters make possible the use of TPV at temperatures as low as 1200K. Both selective emitter and filter system TPV systems are feasible. However, requirements on the filter system are severe in order to attain high efficiency. A thin-film of a rare-earth oxide is one method for producing an efficient, rugged selective emitter. An efficiency of 0.14 and power density of 9.2 W/KG at 1200K is calculated for a hypothetical thin-film neodymia (Nd2O3) selective emitter TPV system that uses radioisotope decay as the thermal energy source.

  13. High efficiency direct thermal to electric energy conversion from radioisotope decay using selective emitters and spectrally tuned solar cells

    Chubb, D.L.; Flood, D.J.; Lowe, R.A.

    1993-08-01

    Thermophotovoltaic (TPV) systems are attractive possibilities for direct thermal-to-electric energy conversion, but have typically required the use of black body radiators operating at high temperatures. Recent advances in both the understanding and performance of solid rare-earth oxide selective emitters make possible the use of TPV at temperatures as low as 1200K. Both selective emitter and filter system TPV systems are feasible. However, requirements on the filter system are severe in order to attain high efficiency. A thin-film of a rare-earth oxide is one method for producing an efficient, rugged selective emitter. An efficiency of 0.14 and power density of 9.2 W/KG at 1200K is calculated for a hypothetical thin-film neodymia (Nd2O3) selective emitter TPV system that uses radioisotope decay as the thermal energy source

  14. Effectiveness of ancestral irradiation on the direct and correlated responses to selection for body weight in rats

    Gianola, D.

    1975-01-01

    The effects of ancestral irradiation of rat spermatogonia (a cumulative total of 4050 r of x-rays) were studied in a highly inbred line of rats to explore the feasibility of using irradiation to enhance the effectiveness of selection. Six generations after irradiation was terminated, a selection experiment for body weight at six weeks of age was started in both ancestrally irradiated and non-irradiated populations. There were two non-contemporaneous replicates in each of the populations. Within each of the ancestral treatment-replicate combinations one line was selected for high, one for low body weight at six weeks of age, and a third line was maintained by random selection. In each line, avoidance of mating of animals with grandparents in common was attempted. Data on the first ten progeny generations of selection were included in this study. Five types of covariances among relatives were used to estimate causal components of variance for five different genetic models within the ''non-irradiated'' and ''irradiated'' randomly selected models. The parameters in the genetic models were estimated by generalized least-squares. This analysis suggested that a genetic model including direct genetic and maternal genetic effects was adequate to describe the body weights at 3, 6 and 10 weeks of age and the weight gains between these ages. Ancestral irradiation seemed to have enhanced the maternal genetic variance and the covariance between the direct genetic and the maternal genetic effects. On the basis of the above analysis, it was deduced that mass selection should have been more effective in the descendants of irradiated males than in those of the non-irradiated males as a consequence of greater phenotypic variability in their progeny and an enhancement in the regression of the genetic value on the selection criterion

  15. Output of continuous directed selection aimed at short stem development in Winter Rye (Secale cereale L.

    В. В. Скорик

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available The article provides progress report on the barley of F3к-10029/Saratovske 4 height decreasing throughout 1974 to 2012 by way of selecting plants of the shortest stem. 38 years of selecting the shortest stem genotypes cut down plant height by 5,7 times at the background of dominant Hl gene expression. Average plant height during 38 breeding cycles was descending by 2,69 cm, but this was not an even trend. New creative donor for ultimate short stem characteristic, Gnome 3, has been developed, with Hl-3Hl-3alleles designation. Relative impact on the efficacy of minus-selection by the plant height of the selection differential (38,00% and inheritance coefficient in its narrow sense (14,56% is established. Efficiency of the selection is realized with the decrease of winter rye height plants by 72,08% as expected by the relative breeding forecast. Analyzes is completed for 11 genetic and statistical clusters of average utilitarian characteristics of Gnome 3 ultra short stem rye over the period from 1974 to 2012.

  16. Detecting directional selection in the presence of recent admixture in African-Americans.

    Lohmueller, Kirk E; Bustamante, Carlos D; Clark, Andrew G

    2011-03-01

    We investigate the performance of tests of neutrality in admixed populations using plausible demographic models for African-American history as well as resequencing data from African and African-American populations. The analysis of both simulated and human resequencing data suggests that recent admixture does not result in an excess of false-positive results for neutrality tests based on the frequency spectrum after accounting for the population growth in the parental African population. Furthermore, when simulating positive selection, Tajima's D, Fu and Li's D, and haplotype homozygosity have lower power to detect population-specific selection using individuals sampled from the admixed population than from the nonadmixed population. Fay and Wu's H test, however, has more power to detect selection using individuals from the admixed population than from the nonadmixed population, especially when the selective sweep ended long ago. Our results have implications for interpreting recent genome-wide scans for positive selection in human populations. © 2011 by the Genetics Society of America

  17. Metabolic reprogramming during neuronal differentiation.

    Agostini, M; Romeo, F; Inoue, S; Niklison-Chirou, M V; Elia, A J; Dinsdale, D; Morone, N; Knight, R A; Mak, T W; Melino, G

    2016-09-01

    Newly generated neurons pass through a series of well-defined developmental stages, which allow them to integrate into existing neuronal circuits. After exit from the cell cycle, postmitotic neurons undergo neuronal migration, axonal elongation, axon pruning, dendrite morphogenesis and synaptic maturation and plasticity. Lack of a global metabolic analysis during early cortical neuronal development led us to explore the role of cellular metabolism and mitochondrial biology during ex vivo differentiation of primary cortical neurons. Unexpectedly, we observed a huge increase in mitochondrial biogenesis. Changes in mitochondrial mass, morphology and function were correlated with the upregulation of the master regulators of mitochondrial biogenesis, TFAM and PGC-1α. Concomitant with mitochondrial biogenesis, we observed an increase in glucose metabolism during neuronal differentiation, which was linked to an increase in glucose uptake and enhanced GLUT3 mRNA expression and platelet isoform of phosphofructokinase 1 (PFKp) protein expression. In addition, glutamate-glutamine metabolism was also increased during the differentiation of cortical neurons. We identified PI3K-Akt-mTOR signalling as a critical regulator role of energy metabolism in neurons. Selective pharmacological inhibition of these metabolic pathways indicate existence of metabolic checkpoint that need to be satisfied in order to allow neuronal differentiation.

  18. Site-directed alkylation of multiple opioid receptors. I. Binding selectivity

    James, I.F.; Goldstein, A.

    1984-01-01

    A method for measuring and expressing the binding selectivity of ligands for mu, delta, and kappa opioid binding sites is reported. Radioligands are used that are partially selective for these sites in combination with membrane preparations enriched in each site. Enrichment was obtained by treatment of membranes with the alkylating agent beta-chlornaltrexamine in the presence of appropriate protecting ligands. After enrichment for mu receptors, [ 3 H] dihydromorphine bound to a single type of site as judged by the slope of competition binding curves. After enrichment for delta or kappa receptors, binding sites for [ 3 H] [D-Ala2, D-Leu5]enkephalin and [3H]ethylketocyclazocine, respectively, were still not homogeneous. There were residual mu sites in delta-enriched membranes but no evidence for residual mu or delta sites in kappa-enriched membranes were found. This method was used to identify ligands that are highly selective for each of the three types of sites

  19. Dorsal border periaqueductal gray neurons project to the area directly adjacent to the central canal ependyma of the C4-T8 spinal cord in the cat

    Mouton, LJ; Kerstens, L; VanderWant, J; Holstege, G

    In a previous study horseradish peroxidase (HRP) injections in the upper thoracic and cervical spinal cord revealed some faintly labeled small neurons at the dorsal border of the periaqueductal gray (PAG). The present light microscopic and electronmicroscopic tracing study describes the precise

  20. Understanding Neuronal Mechanisms of Epilepsy ...

    Admin

    α subunit of Rat Brain type IIA Voltage Gated Sodium Channel and geneticin selection ..... scaling the mother wavelet. Scale = 1/ .... through dynamic clamp. Dynamic Clamp ... It has been shown that like in vivo neurons, cortical networks in.

  1. Geometry directed self-selection in the coordination-driven self-assembly of irregular supramolecular polygons.

    Zheng, Yao-Rong; Northrop, Brian H; Yang, Hai-Bo; Zhao, Liang; Stang, Peter J

    2009-05-01

    The self-assembly of irregular metallo-supramolecular hexagons and parallelograms has been achieved in a self-selective manner upon mixing 120 degrees unsymmetrical dipyridyl ligands with 60 degrees or 120 degrees organoplatinum acceptors in a 1:1 ratio. The polygons have been characterized using (31)P and (1)H multinuclear NMR spectroscopy and electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS) as well as X-ray crystallography. Geometric features of the molecular subunits direct the self-selection process, which is supported by molecular force field computations.

  2. On dynamic selection of households for direct marketing based on Markov chain models with memory

    Otter, Pieter W.

    A simple, dynamic selection procedure is proposed, based on conditional, expected profits using Markov chain models with memory. The method is easy to apply, only frequencies and mean values have to be calculated or estimated. The method is empirically illustrated using a data set from a charitable

  3. Weldon's Search for a Direct Proof of Natural Selection and the ...

    fused, reception to Darwin's principle of natural selection in the .... This was the context in which he developed a particulate theory of heredity – 'pangenesis'. He ... Thereafter, following the independent rediscovery of Mendelian laws by de Vries, .... differences in traits among individuals that could be transmitted to offspring.

  4. Template-Directed Self-Assembly of Alkanethiol Monolayers: Selective Growth on Preexisting Monolayer Edges

    Sharpe, R.B.A.; Burdinski, Dirk; Huskens, Jurriaan; Zandvliet, Henricus J.W.; Reinhoudt, David; Poelsema, Bene

    2007-01-01

    Self-assembled monolayers were investigated for their suitability as two-dimensional scaffolds for the selective growth of alkanethiol edge structures. Heterostructures with chemical contrast could be grown, whose dimensions were governed by both the initial pattern sizes and the process time.

  5. Asymmetry in infants' selective attention to facial features during visual processing of infant-directed speech

    Smith, Nicholas A.; Gibilisco, Colleen R.; Meisinger, Rachel E.; Hankey, Maren

    2013-01-01

    Two experiments used eye tracking to examine how infant and adult observers distribute their eye gaze on videos of a mother producing infant- and adult-directed speech. Both groups showed greater attention to the eyes than to the nose and mouth, as well as an asymmetrical focus on the talker’s right eye for infant-directed speech stimuli. Observers continued to look more at the talker’s apparent right eye when the video stimuli were mirror flipped, suggesting that the asymmetry reflects a per...

  6. Asymmetry in infants’ selective attention to facial features during visual processing of infant-directed speech

    Nicholas A Smith

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Two experiments used eye tracking to examine how infant and adult observers distribute their eye gaze on videos of a mother producing infant- and adult-directed speech. Both groups showed greater attention to the eyes than to the nose and mouth, as well as an asymmetrical focus on the talker’s right eye for infant-directed speech stimuli. Observers continued to look more at the talker’s apparent right eye when the video stimuli were mirror flipped, suggesting that the asymmetry reflects a perceptual processing bias rather than a stimulus artifact, which may be related to cerebral lateralization of emotion processing.

  7. Exact and Direct Modeling Technique for Rotor-Bearing Systems with Arbitrary Selected Degrees-of-Freedom

    Shilin Chen

    1994-01-01

    Full Text Available An exact and direct modeling technique is proposed for modeling of rotor-bearing systems with arbitrary selected degrees-of-freedom. This technique is based on the combination of the transfer and dynamic stiffness matrices. The technique differs from the usual combination methods in that the global dynamic stiffness matrix for the system or the subsystem is obtained directly by rearranging the corresponding global transfer matrix. Therefore, the dimension of the global dynamic stiffness matrix is independent of the number of the elements or the substructures. In order to show the simplicity and efficiency of the method, two numerical examples are given.

  8. Anatomical evidence for direct fiber projections from the cerebellar nucleus interpositus to rubrospinal neurons. A quantitative EM study in the rat combining anterograde and retrograde intra-axonal tracing methods

    Dekker, J.J.

    1981-01-01

    A quantitative electron microscopic (EM) study combining the anterograde intra-axonal transport of radioactive amino acids and the retrograde intra-axonal transport of the enzyme horseradish peroxidase (HRP) was performed in the magnocellular red nucleus of the rat to obtain anatomical evidence as to whether there is a direct projection from the cerebellar nucleus interpositus to the cells in the red nucleus that give rise to the rubrospinal tract. Large asymmetrical synaptic terminals were radioactively labeled in the magnocellular red nucleus following injections of [ 3 H]leucine into the cerebellar nucleus interpositus. In these same animals, the postsynaptic target neurons were labeled with HRP granules after injection of this substance in the rubrospinal tract. A quantitative analysis showed that more than 85% of the large and giant neurons in the magnocellular red nucleus were labeled with HRP granules and also received synaptic contacts from radioactively-labeled terminals. Thus, it can be concluded that in the rat, afferents from the cerebellar nucleus interpositus establish asymmetrical synaptic contacts with large and giant rubrospinal neurons, thus confirming and extending the previous physiological evidence of such direct monosynaptic connections. (Auth.)

  9. Motor Neurons

    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....

  10. Cholinergic Neurons in the Basal Forebrain Promote Wakefulness by Actions on Neighboring Non-Cholinergic Neurons: An Opto-Dialysis Study.

    Zant, Janneke C; Kim, Tae; Prokai, Laszlo; Szarka, Szabolcs; McNally, James; McKenna, James T; Shukla, Charu; Yang, Chun; Kalinchuk, Anna V; McCarley, Robert W; Brown, Ritchie E; Basheer, Radhika

    2016-02-10

    Understanding the control of sleep-wake states by the basal forebrain (BF) poses a challenge due to the intermingled presence of cholinergic, GABAergic, and glutamatergic neurons. All three BF neuronal subtypes project to the cortex and are implicated in cortical arousal and sleep-wake control. Thus, nonspecific stimulation or inhibition studies do not reveal the roles of these different neuronal types. Recent studies using optogenetics have shown that "selective" stimulation of BF cholinergic neurons increases transitions between NREM sleep and wakefulness, implicating cholinergic projections to cortex in wake promotion. However, the interpretation of these optogenetic experiments is complicated by interactions that may occur within the BF. For instance, a recent in vitro study from our group found that cholinergic neurons strongly excite neighboring GABAergic neurons, including the subset of cortically projecting neurons, which contain the calcium-binding protein, parvalbumin (PV) (Yang et al., 2014). Thus, the wake-promoting effect of "selective" optogenetic stimulation of BF cholinergic neurons could be mediated by local excitation of GABA/PV or other non-cholinergic BF neurons. In this study, using a newly designed opto-dialysis probe to couple selective optical stimulation with simultaneous in vivo microdialysis, we demonstrated that optical stimulation of cholinergic neurons locally increased acetylcholine levels and increased wakefulness in mice. Surprisingly, the enhanced wakefulness caused by cholinergic stimulation was abolished by simultaneous reverse microdialysis of cholinergic receptor antagonists into BF. Thus, our data suggest that the wake-promoting effect of cholinergic stimulation requires local release of acetylcholine in the basal forebrain and activation of cortically projecting, non-cholinergic neurons, including the GABAergic/PV neurons. Optogenetics is a revolutionary tool to assess the roles of particular groups of neurons in behavioral

  11. Activity in a premotor cortical nucleus of zebra finches is locally organized and exhibits auditory selectivity in neurons but not in glia.

    Michael H Graber

    Full Text Available Motor functions are often guided by sensory experience, most convincingly illustrated by complex learned behaviors. Key to sensory guidance in motor areas may be the structural and functional organization of sensory inputs and their evoked responses. We study sensory responses in large populations of neurons and neuron-assistive cells in the songbird motor area HVC, an auditory-vocal brain area involved in sensory learning and in adult song production. HVC spike responses to auditory stimulation display remarkable preference for the bird's own song (BOS compared to other stimuli. Using two-photon calcium imaging in anesthetized zebra finches we measure the spatio-temporal structure of baseline activity and of auditory evoked responses in identified populations of HVC cells. We find strong correlations between calcium signal fluctuations in nearby cells of a given type, both in identified neurons and in astroglia. In identified HVC neurons only, auditory stimulation decorrelates ongoing calcium signals, less for BOS than for other sound stimuli. Overall, calcium transients show strong preference for BOS in identified HVC neurons but not in astroglia, showing diversity in local functional organization among identified neuron and astroglia populations.

  12. Directional selection has shaped the oral jaws of Lake Malawi cichlid fishes

    Albertson, R. Craig; Streelman, J. Todd; Kocher, Thomas D.

    2003-01-01

    East African cichlid fishes represent one of the most striking examples of rapid and convergent evolutionary radiation among vertebrates. Models of ecological speciation would suggest that functional divergence in feeding morphology has contributed to the origin and maintenance of cichlid species diversity. However, definitive evidence for the action of natural selection has been missing. Here we use quantitative genetics to identify regions of the cichlid genome responsible for functionally ...

  13. Experimental analysis of multivariate female choice in gray treefrogs (Hyla versicolor): evidence for directional and stabilizing selection.

    Gerhardt, H Carl; Brooks, Robert

    2009-10-01

    Even simple biological signals vary in several measurable dimensions. Understanding their evolution requires, therefore, a multivariate understanding of selection, including how different properties interact to determine the effectiveness of the signal. We combined experimental manipulation with multivariate selection analysis to assess female mate choice on the simple trilled calls of male gray treefrogs. We independently and randomly varied five behaviorally relevant acoustic properties in 154 synthetic calls. We compared response times of each of 154 females to one of these calls with its response to a standard call that had mean values of the five properties. We found directional and quadratic selection on two properties indicative of the amount of signaling, pulse number, and call rate. Canonical rotation of the fitness surface showed that these properties, along with pulse rate, contributed heavily to a major axis of stabilizing selection, a result consistent with univariate studies showing diminishing effects of increasing pulse number well beyond the mean. Spectral properties contributed to a second major axis of stabilizing selection. The single major axis of disruptive selection suggested that a combination of two temporal and two spectral properties with values differing from the mean should be especially attractive.

  14. Cellular Spacing Selection During the Directional Solidification of Binary Alloys. A Numerical Approach

    Catalina, Adrian V.; Sen, S.; Rose, M. Franklin (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    The evolution of cellular solid/liquid interfaces from an initially unstable planar front was studied by means of a two-dimensional computer simulation. The developed numerical model makes use of an interface tracking procedure and has the capability to describe the dynamics of the interface morphology based on local changes of the thermodynamic conditions. The fundamental physics of this formulation was validated against experimental microgravity results and the predictions of the analytical linear stability theory. The performed simulations revealed that in certain conditions, based on a competitive growth mechanism, an interface could become unstable to random perturbations of infinitesimal amplitude even at wavelengths smaller than the neutral wavelength, lambda(sub c), predicted by the linear stability theory. Furthermore, two main stages of spacing selection have been identified. In the first stage, at low perturbations amplitude, the selection mechanism is driven by the maximum growth rate of instabilities while in the second stage the selection is influenced by nonlinear phenomena caused by the interactions between the neighboring cells. Comparison of these predictions with other existing theories of pattern formation and experimental results will be discussed.

  15. Volitional enhancement of firing synchrony and oscillation by neuronal operant conditioning: interaction with neurorehabilitation and brain-machine interface.

    Sakurai, Yoshio; Song, Kichan; Tachibana, Shota; Takahashi, Susumu

    2014-01-01

    In this review, we focus on neuronal operant conditioning in which increments in neuronal activities are directly rewarded without behaviors. We discuss the potential of this approach to elucidate neuronal plasticity for enhancing specific brain functions and its interaction with the progress in neurorehabilitation and brain-machine interfaces. The key to-be-conditioned activities that this paper emphasizes are synchronous and oscillatory firings of multiple neurons that reflect activities of cell assemblies. First, we introduce certain well-known studies on neuronal operant conditioning in which conditioned enhancements of neuronal firing were reported in animals and humans. These studies demonstrated the feasibility of volitional control over neuronal activity. Second, we refer to the recent studies on operant conditioning of synchrony and oscillation of neuronal activities. In particular, we introduce a recent study showing volitional enhancement of oscillatory activity in monkey motor cortex and our study showing selective enhancement of firing synchrony of neighboring neurons in rat hippocampus. Third, we discuss the reasons for emphasizing firing synchrony and oscillation in neuronal operant conditioning, the main reason being that they reflect the activities of cell assemblies, which have been suggested to be basic neuronal codes representing information in the brain. Finally, we discuss the interaction of neuronal operant conditioning with neurorehabilitation and brain-machine interface (BMI). We argue that synchrony and oscillation of neuronal firing are the key activities required for developing both reliable neurorehabilitation and high-performance BMI. Further, we conclude that research of neuronal operant conditioning, neurorehabilitation, BMI, and system neuroscience will produce findings applicable to these interrelated fields, and neuronal synchrony and oscillation can be a common important bridge among all of them.

  16. Current status of gene therapy for motor neuron disease

    Xingkai An; Rong Peng; Shanshan Zhao

    2006-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: Although the etiology and pathogenesis of motor neuron disease is still unknown, there are many hypotheses on motor neuron mitochondrion, cytoskeleton structure and functional injuries. Thus, gene therapy of motor neuron disease has become a hot topic to apply in viral vector, gene delivery and basic gene techniques.DATA SOURCES: The related articles published between January 2000 and October 2006 were searched in Medline database and ISl database by computer using the keywords "motor neuron disease, gene therapy", and the language is limited to English. Meanwhile, the related references of review were also searched by handiwork. STUDY SELECTION: Original articles and referred articles in review were chosen after first hearing, then the full text which had new ideas were found, and when refer to the similar study in the recent years were considered first.DATA EXTRACTION: Among the 92 related articles, 40 ones were accepted, and 52 were excluded because of repetitive study or reviews.DATA SYNTHESIS: The viral vectors of gene therapy for motor neuron disease include adenoviral, adeno-associated viral vectors, herpes simplex virus type 1 vectors and lentiviral vectors. The delivery of them can be achieved by direct injection into the brain, or by remote delivery after injection vectors into muscle or peripheral nerves, or by ex vivo gene transfer. The viral vectors of gene therapy for motor neuron disease have been successfully developed, but the gene delivery of them is hampered by some difficulties. The RNA interference and neuroprotection are the main technologies for gene-based therapy in motor neuron disease. CONCLUSION : The RNA interference for motor neuron disease has succeeded in animal models, and the neuroprotection also does. But, there are still a lot of questions for gene therapy in the clinical treatment of motor neuron disease.

  17. Twenty years of artificial directional selection have shaped the genome of the Italian Large White pig breed.

    Schiavo, G; Galimberti, G; Calò, D G; Samorè, A B; Bertolini, F; Russo, V; Gallo, M; Buttazzoni, L; Fontanesi, L

    2016-04-01

    In this study, we investigated at the genome-wide level if 20 years of artificial directional selection based on boar genetic evaluation obtained with a classical BLUP animal model shaped the genome of the Italian Large White pig breed. The most influential boars of this breed (n = 192), born from 1992 (the beginning of the selection program of this breed) to 2012, with an estimated breeding value reliability of >0.85, were genotyped with the Illumina Porcine SNP60 BeadChip. After grouping the boars in eight classes according to their year of birth, filtered single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were used to evaluate the effects of time on genotype frequency changes using multinomial logistic regression models. Of these markers, 493 had a PBonferroni  selection program. The obtained results indicated that the genome of the Italian Large White pigs was shaped by a directional selection program derived by the application of methodologies assuming the infinitesimal model that captured a continuous trend of allele frequency changes in the boar population. © 2015 Stichting International Foundation for Animal Genetics.

  18. Experimental evolution of recombination and crossover interference in Drosophila caused by directional selection for stress-related traits.

    Aggarwal, Dau Dayal; Rashkovetsky, Eugenia; Michalak, Pawel; Cohen, Irit; Ronin, Yefim; Zhou, Dan; Haddad, Gabriel G; Korol, Abraham B

    2015-11-27

    Population genetics predicts that tight linkage between new and/or pre-existing beneficial and deleterious alleles should decrease the efficiency of natural selection in finite populations. By decoupling beneficial and deleterious alleles and facilitating the combination of beneficial alleles, recombination accelerates the formation of high-fitness genotypes. This may impose indirect selection for increased recombination. Despite the progress in theoretical understanding, interplay between recombination and selection remains a controversial issue in evolutionary biology. Even less satisfactory is the situation with crossover interference, which is a deviation of double-crossover frequency in a pair of adjacent intervals from the product of recombination rates in the two intervals expected on the assumption of crossover independence. Here, we report substantial changes in recombination and interference in three long-term directional selection experiments with Drosophila melanogaster: for desiccation (~50 generations), hypoxia, and hyperoxia tolerance (>200 generations each). For all three experiments, we found a high interval-specific increase of recombination frequencies in selection lines (up to 40-50% per interval) compared to the control lines. We also discovered a profound effect of selection on interference as expressed by an increased frequency of double crossovers in selection lines. Our results show that changes in interference are not necessarily coupled with increased recombination. Our results support the theoretical predictions that adaptation to a new environment can promote evolution toward higher recombination. Moreover, this is the first evidence of selection for different recombination-unrelated traits potentially leading, not only to evolution toward increased crossover rates, but also to changes in crossover interference, one of the fundamental features of recombination.

  19. Method and apparatus for producing and selectively directing x-rays to different points on an object

    Haimson, J.

    1981-01-01

    The invention relates to apparatus suitable for use in a computer tomography X-ray scanner. High intensity X-rays are produced and directed towards the object of interest from any of a plurality of preselected coplanar points spaced from the object and spaced radially about a line through the object. There are no moving parts. The electron beam, which produces X-rays as a consequence of impact with the target, is directed selectively to preselected points on the stationary target. Beam-direction compensates for the beam spreading effect of space charge forces acting on the beam, and beam-shaping shapes the beam to a predetermined cross-sectional configuration at its point of incidence with the target. Beam aberrations including sextupole aberrations are corrected. (U.K.)

  20. Evaluation of the capacity for direct regeneration of maize inbreds of the Lancaster selection group

    K. V. Derkach

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available In connection with the necessity of bringing elite maize inbreds of the Lancaster germplasm group, which have potential for cultivation in Ukraine, into the system of genetic tranformation, the aim of this investigation is to identify the ability of maize inbreds of this group to regenerate by direct organogenesis and to determine the optimal mineral basis for their nutritional environment using segments of the node area of shoots. As explantats we used sterile 4-day old seedlings of 4 maize inbreds of Lancaster germplasm and model inbred Chi31 exotic germplasm. The seedlings were obtained by germination of sterile seeds in Petri dishes between two layers of moist sterile filter paper at a temperature of 27 ºC in dark conditions. A single 1 cmlong segment was cut from each from each seedling, running from 0.5 cmbefore the node to 0.5 cmafter the node. A cut was made in each segment of the node in order to create a wounded surface. Explantats were planted in a nutrient environment with mineral bases of MS or N6, modified by the addition of 10 mg/l silver nitrate, 100 mg/l casein hydrolyzate, 690 mg/l L-proline, 30 g/l sucrose, 1.0 mg/l 2,4-dychlorphenoksiacetic acid and 0,1 mg/l abscisic acid. Cultivation was carried out at 25–27 ºC in the light. Direct hemogenesis in this environment on the 14th day of cultivation in vitro reached 100% for each line. This meant that all researched lines of Lancaster germplasm and the model line showed a high capacity for direct regeneration through direct hemogenesis, which does not depend on the composition of the mineral content of their nutritional environment. Callus formation was observed in all genotypes on the 14th day of cultivation in vitro and the extent of its formation increased during the following month of cultivation. The callus formation was observed only at the site of the wounded surface. The calluses were transparent. Although green areas appeared in these calluses, they were

  1. A transcription factor collective defines the HSN serotonergic neuron regulatory landscape.

    Lloret-Fernández, Carla; Maicas, Miren; Mora-Martínez, Carlos; Artacho, Alejandro; Jimeno-Martín, Ángela; Chirivella, Laura; Weinberg, Peter; Flames, Nuria

    2018-03-22

    Cell differentiation is controlled by individual transcription factors (TFs) that together activate a selection of enhancers in specific cell types. How these combinations of TFs identify and activate their target sequences remains poorly understood. Here, we identify the cis -regulatory transcriptional code that controls the differentiation of serotonergic HSN neurons in Caenorhabditis elegans . Activation of the HSN transcriptome is directly orchestrated by a collective of six TFs. Binding site clusters for this TF collective form a regulatory signature that is sufficient for de novo identification of HSN neuron functional enhancers. Among C. elegans neurons, the HSN transcriptome most closely resembles that of mouse serotonergic neurons. Mouse orthologs of the HSN TF collective also regulate serotonergic differentiation and can functionally substitute for their worm counterparts which suggests deep homology. Our results identify rules governing the regulatory landscape of a critically important neuronal type in two species separated by over 700 million years. © 2018, Lloret-Fernández et al.

  2. Selectivity and direct visualization of carbon dioxide and sulfur dioxide in a decorated porous host

    Yang, Sihai; Sun, Junliang; Ramirez-Cuesta, Anibal J.; Callear, Samantha K.; David, William I. F.; Anderson, Daniel P.; Newby, Ruth; Blake, Alexander J.; Parker, Julia E.; Tang, Chiu C.; Schröder, Martin

    2012-11-01

    Understanding the mechanism by which porous solids trap harmful gases such as CO2 and SO2 is essential for the design of new materials for their selective removal. Materials functionalized with amine groups dominate this field, largely because of their potential to form carbamates through H2N(δ-)···C(δ+)O2 interactions, thereby trapping CO2 covalently. However, the use of these materials is energy-intensive, with significant environmental impact. Here, we report a non-amine-containing porous solid (NOTT-300) in which hydroxyl groups within pores bind CO2 and SO2 selectively. In situ powder X-ray diffraction and inelastic neutron scattering studies, combined with modelling, reveal that hydroxyl groups bind CO2 and SO2 through the formation of O=C(S)=O(δ-)···H(δ+)-O hydrogen bonds, which are reinforced by weak supramolecular interactions with C-H atoms on the aromatic rings of the framework. This offers the potential for the application of new ‘easy-on/easy-off’ capture systems for CO2 and SO2 that carry fewer economic and environmental penalties.

  3. Selective decline of neurotrophin and neurotrophin receptor genes within CA1 pyramidal neurons and hippocampus proper: Correlation with cognitive performance and neuropathology in mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's disease.

    Ginsberg, Stephen D; Malek-Ahmadi, Michael H; Alldred, Melissa J; Che, Shaoli; Elarova, Irina; Chen, Yinghua; Jeanneteau, Freddy; Kranz, Thorsten M; Chao, Moses V; Counts, Scott E; Mufson, Elliott J

    2017-09-09

    Hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons, a major component of the medial temporal lobe memory circuit, are selectively vulnerable during the progression of Alzheimer's disease (AD). The cellular mechanism(s) underlying degeneration of these neurons and the relationship to cognitive performance remains largely undefined. Here, we profiled neurotrophin and neurotrophin receptor gene expression within microdissected CA1 neurons along with regional hippocampal dissections from subjects who died with a clinical diagnosis of no cognitive impairment (NCI), mild cognitive impairment (MCI), or AD using laser capture microdissection (LCM), custom-designed microarray analysis, and qPCR of CA1 subregional dissections. Gene expression levels were correlated with cognitive test scores and AD neuropathology criteria. We found a significant downregulation of several neurotrophin genes (e.g., Gdnf, Ngfb, and Ntf4) in CA1 pyramidal neurons in MCI compared to NCI and AD subjects. In addition, the neurotrophin receptor transcripts TrkB and TrkC were decreased in MCI and AD compared to NCI. Regional hippocampal dissections also revealed select neurotrophic gene dysfunction providing evidence for vulnerability within the hippocampus proper during the progression of dementia. Downregulation of several neurotrophins of the NGF family and cognate neurotrophin receptor (TrkA, TrkB, and TrkC) genes correlated with antemortem cognitive measures including the Mini-Mental State Exam (MMSE), a composite global cognitive score (GCS), and Episodic, Semantic, and Working Memory, Perceptual Speed, and Visuospatial domains. Significant correlations were found between select neurotrophic expression downregulation and neuritic plaques (NPs) and neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs), but not diffuse plaques (DPs). These data suggest that dysfunction of neurotrophin signaling complexes have profound negative sequelae within vulnerable hippocampal cell types, which play a role in mnemonic and executive dysfunction

  4. Highly selective direct determination of chlorate ions by using a newly developed potentiometric electrode based on modified smectite.

    Topcu, Cihan

    2016-12-01

    A novel polyvinyl chloride membrane chlorate (ClO 3 - ) selective electrode based on modified smectite was developed for the direct determination of chlorate ions and the potentiometric performance characteristics of its were examined. The best selectivity and sensitivity for chlorate ions were obtained for the electrode membrane containing ionophore/polyvinylchloride/o-nitrophenyloctylether in composition of 12/28/60 (w/w%). The proposed electrode showed a Nernstian response toward chlorate ions at pH=7 in the concentration range of 1×10 -7 -1×10 -1 M and the limit of detection was calculated as 9×10 -8 M from the constructed response plot. The linear slope of the electrode was -61±1mVdecade -1 for chlorate activity in the mentioned linear working range. The selectivity coefficients were calculated according to both the matched potential method and the separate solution method. The calculated selectivity coefficients showed that the electrode performed excellent selectivity for chlorate ions. The potentiometric response of electrode toward chlorate ions was found to be highly reproducible. The electrode potential was stable between pH=4-10 and it had a dynamic response time of <5s. The potentiometric behavior of the electrode in partial non-aqueous medium was also investigated and the obtained results (up to 5% (v/v) alcohol) were satisfactory. The proposed electrode was used during 15 weeks without any significant change in its potential response. Additionally, the electrode was very useful in water analysis studies such as dam water, river water, tap water, and swimming pool water where the direct determination of chlorate ions was required. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Direct healthcare costs of selected diseases primarily or partially transmitted by water.

    Collier, S A; Stockman, L J; Hicks, L A; Garrison, L E; Zhou, F J; Beach, M J

    2012-11-01

    Despite US sanitation advancements, millions of waterborne disease cases occur annually, although the precise burden of disease is not well quantified. Estimating the direct healthcare cost of specific infections would be useful in prioritizing waterborne disease prevention activities. Hospitalization and outpatient visit costs per case and total US hospitalization costs for ten waterborne diseases were calculated using large healthcare claims and hospital discharge databases. The five primarily waterborne diseases in this analysis (giardiasis, cryptosporidiosis, Legionnaires' disease, otitis externa, and non-tuberculous mycobacterial infection) were responsible for over 40 000 hospitalizations at a cost of $970 million per year, including at least $430 million in hospitalization costs for Medicaid and Medicare patients. An additional 50 000 hospitalizations for campylobacteriosis, salmonellosis, shigellosis, haemolytic uraemic syndrome, and toxoplasmosis cost $860 million annually ($390 million in payments for Medicaid and Medicare patients), a portion of which can be assumed to be due to waterborne transmission.

  6. SHAPE SELECTIVE NANO-CATALYSTS: TOWARD DIRECT METHANOL FUEL CELLS APPLICATIONS

    Murph, S.

    2010-06-16

    A series of bimetallic core-shell-alloy type Au-Pt nanomaterials with various morphologies, aspect ratios and compositions, were produced in a heterogenous epitaxial fashion. Gold nanoparticles with well-controlled particle size and shape, e.g. spheres, rods and cubes, were used as 'seeds' for platinum growth in the presence of a mild reducing agent, ascorbic acid and a cationic surfactant cethyltrimethyl ammonium bromide (CTAB). The reactions take place in air and water, and are quick, economical and amenable for scaling up. The synthesized nanocatalysts were characterized by electron microscopy techniques and energy dispersive X-ray analysis. Nafion membranes were embedded with the Au-Pt nanomaterials and analyzed by atomic force microscopy (AFM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) for their potential in direct methanol fuel cells applications.

  7. Site selection and directional models of deserts used for ERBE validation targets

    Staylor, W. F.

    1986-01-01

    Broadband shortwave and longwave radiance measurements obtained from the Nimbus 7 Earth Radiation Budget scanner were used to develop reflectance and emittance models for the Sahara, Gibson, and Saudi Deserts. These deserts will serve as in-flight validation targets for the Earth Radiation Budget Experiment being flown on the Earth Radiation Budget Satellite and two National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration polar satellites. The directional reflectance model derived for the deserts was a function of the sum and product of the cosines of the solar and viewing zenith angles, and thus reciprocity existed between these zenith angles. The emittance model was related by a power law of the cosine of the viewing zenith angle.

  8. Hypothalamic Tuberomammillary Nucleus Neurons: Electrophysiological Diversity and Essential Role in Arousal Stability.

    Fujita, Akie; Bonnavion, Patricia; Wilson, Miryam H; Mickelsen, Laura E; Bloit, Julien; de Lecea, Luis; Jackson, Alexander C

    2017-09-27

    Histaminergic (HA) neurons, found in the posterior hypothalamic tuberomammillary nucleus (TMN), extend fibers throughout the brain and exert modulatory influence over numerous physiological systems. Multiple lines of evidence suggest that the activity of HA neurons is important in the regulation of vigilance despite the lack of direct, causal evidence demonstrating its requirement for the maintenance of arousal during wakefulness. Given the strong correlation between HA neuron excitability and behavioral arousal, we investigated both the electrophysiological diversity of HA neurons in brain slices and the effect of their acute silencing in vivo in male mice. For this purpose, we first validated a transgenic mouse line expressing cre recombinase in histidine decarboxylase-expressing neurons ( Hdc -Cre) followed by a systematic census of the membrane properties of both HA and non-HA neurons in the ventral TMN (TMNv) region. Through unsupervised hierarchical cluster analysis, we found electrophysiological diversity both between TMNv HA and non-HA neurons, and among HA neurons. To directly determine the impact of acute cessation of HA neuron activity on sleep-wake states in awake and behaving mice, we examined the effects of optogenetic silencing of TMNv HA neurons in vivo We found that acute silencing of HA neurons during wakefulness promotes slow-wave sleep, but not rapid eye movement sleep, during a period of low sleep pressure. Together, these data suggest that the tonic firing of HA neurons is necessary for the maintenance of wakefulness, and their silencing not only impairs arousal but is sufficient to rapidly and selectively induce slow-wave sleep. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT The function of monoaminergic systems and circuits that regulate sleep and wakefulness is often disrupted as part of the pathophysiology of many neuropsychiatric disorders. One such circuit is the posterior hypothalamic histamine (HA) system, implicated in supporting wakefulness and higher brain

  9. Bidirectional Modulation of Intrinsic Excitability in Rat Prelimbic Cortex Neuronal Ensembles and Non-Ensembles after Operant Learning.

    Whitaker, Leslie R; Warren, Brandon L; Venniro, Marco; Harte, Tyler C; McPherson, Kylie B; Beidel, Jennifer; Bossert, Jennifer M; Shaham, Yavin; Bonci, Antonello; Hope, Bruce T

    2017-09-06

    Learned associations between environmental stimuli and rewards drive goal-directed learning and motivated behavior. These memories are thought to be encoded by alterations within specific patterns of sparsely distributed neurons called neuronal ensembles that are activated selectively by reward-predictive stimuli. Here, we use the Fos promoter to identify strongly activated neuronal ensembles in rat prelimbic cortex (PLC) and assess altered intrinsic excitability after 10 d of operant food self-administration training (1 h/d). First, we used the Daun02 inactivation procedure in male FosLacZ-transgenic rats to ablate selectively Fos-expressing PLC neurons that were active during operant food self-administration. Selective ablation of these neurons decreased food seeking. We then used male FosGFP-transgenic rats to assess selective alterations of intrinsic excitability in Fos-expressing neuronal ensembles (FosGFP + ) that were activated during food self-administration and compared these with alterations in less activated non-ensemble neurons (FosGFP - ). Using whole-cell recordings of layer V pyramidal neurons in an ex vivo brain slice preparation, we found that operant self-administration increased excitability of FosGFP + neurons and decreased excitability of FosGFP - neurons. Increased excitability of FosGFP + neurons was driven by increased steady-state input resistance. Decreased excitability of FosGFP - neurons was driven by increased contribution of small-conductance calcium-activated potassium (SK) channels. Injections of the specific SK channel antagonist apamin into PLC increased Fos expression but had no effect on food seeking. Overall, operant learning increased intrinsic excitability of PLC Fos-expressing neuronal ensembles that play a role in food seeking but decreased intrinsic excitability of Fos - non-ensembles. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Prefrontal cortex activity plays a critical role in operant learning, but the underlying cellular mechanisms are

  10. [Mirror neurons].

    Rubia Vila, Francisco José

    2011-01-01

    Mirror neurons were recently discovered in frontal brain areas of the monkey. They are activated when the animal makes a specific movement, but also when the animal observes the same movement in another animal. Some of them also respond to the emotional expression of other animals of the same species. These mirror neurons have also been found in humans. They respond to or "reflect" actions of other individuals in the brain and are thought to represent the basis for imitation and empathy and hence the neurobiological substrate for "theory of mind", the potential origin of language and the so-called moral instinct.

  11. Alcohol-paired contextual cues produce an immediate and selective loss of goal-directed action in rats

    Sean B Ostlund

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available We assessed whether the presence of contextual cues paired with alcohol would disrupt rats’ capacity to express appropriate goal-directed action control. Rats were first given differential context conditioning such that one set of contextual cues was paired with the injection of ethanol and a second, distinctive set of cues was paired with the injection of saline. All rats were then trained in a third, neutral context to press one lever for grain pellets and another lever for sucrose pellets. They were then given two extinction tests to evaluate their ability to choose between the two actions in response to the devaluation of one of the two food outcomes with one test conducted in the alcohol-paired context and the other conducted in the control (saline-paired context. In the control context, rats exhibited goal-directed action control; i.e., they were able selectively to withhold the action that previously earned the now devalued outcome. However, these same rats were impaired when tested in the alcohol-paired context, performing both actions at the same rate regardless of the current value of their respective outcomes. Subsequent testing revealed that the rats were capable of overcoming this impairment if they were giving response-contingent feedback about the current value of the food outcomes. These results provide a clear demonstration of the disruptive influence that alcohol-paired cues can exert on decision-making in general and goal-directed action selection and choice in particular.

  12. Direct detection of antiprotons with the Timepix3 in a new electrostatic selection beamline

    Pacifico, N., E-mail: nicola.pacifico@cern.ch [Institute of Physics and Technology, University of Bergen, Allgaten 55, 5007 Bergen (Norway); Aghion, S. [Politecnico of Milano, Piazza Leonardo da Vinci 32, 20133 Milano (Italy); INFN Milano, via Celoria 16, 20133 Milano (Italy); Alozy, J. [Physics Department, CERN, 1211 Geneva 23 (Switzerland); Amsler, C.; Ariga, A.; Ariga, T. [Laboratory for High Energy Physics, Albert Einstein Center for Fundamental Physics, University of Bern, 3012 Bern (Switzerland); Bonomi, G. [Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, University of Brescia, via Branze 38, 25123 Brescia (Italy); INFN Pavia, via Bassi 6, 27100 Pavia (Italy); Bräunig, P. [Kirchhoff-Institute for Physics, Heidelberg University, Im Neuenheimer Feld 227, 69120 Heidelberg (Germany); Bremer, J. [Physics Department, CERN, 1211 Geneva 23 (Switzerland); Brusa, R.S. [Department of Physics, University of Trento, via Sommarive 14, 38123 Povo, Trento (Italy); TIFPA/INFN Trento, via Sommarive 14, 38123 Povo, Trento (Italy); Cabaret, L. [Laboratory Aimé Cotton, University of Paris-Sud, ENS Cachan, CNRS, University Paris-Saclay, 91405 Orsay Cedex (France); Caccia, M. [INFN Milano, via Celoria 16, 20133 Milano (Italy); Department of Science, University of Insubria, Via Valleggio 11, 22100 Como (Italy); Campbell, M. [Physics Department, CERN, 1211 Geneva 23 (Switzerland); Caravita, R. [Department of Physics, University of Genova, via Dodecaneso 33, 16146 Genova (Italy); INFN Genova, via Dodecaneso 33, 16146 Genova (Italy); Castelli, F. [INFN Milano, via Celoria 16, 20133 Milano (Italy); Department of Physics, University of Milano, via Celoria 16, 20133 Milano (Italy); Cerchiari, G. [Max Planck Institute for Nuclear Physics, Saupfercheckweg 1, 69117 Heidelberg (Germany); Chlouba, K. [Czech Technical University, Prague, Brehov 7, 11519 Prague 1 (Czech Republic); and others

    2016-09-21

    We present here the first results obtained employing the Timepix3 for the detection and tagging of annihilations of low energy antiprotons. The Timepix3 is a recently developed hybrid pixel detector with advanced Time-of-Arrival and Time-over-Threshold capabilities and has the potential of allowing precise kinetic energy measurements of low energy charged particles from their time of flight. The tagging of the characteristic antiproton annihilation signature, already studied by our group, is enabled by the high spatial and energy resolution of this detector. In this study we have used a new, dedicated, energy selection beamline (GRACE). The line is symbiotic to the AEgIS experiment at the CERN Antiproton Decelerator and is dedicated to detector tests and possibly antiproton physics experiments. We show how the high resolution of the Timepix3 on the Time-of-Arrival and Time-over-Threshold information allows for a precise 3D reconstruction of the annihilation prongs. The presented results point at the potential use of the Timepix3 in antimatter-research experiments where a precise and unambiguous tagging of antiproton annihilations is required.

  13. Direct observation of beauty particles selected by muonic decay in emulsion

    2002-01-01

    This experiment is a search for beauty particles produced in pairs by $\\pi$ mesons in emulsions. Beauty particles would be identified in emulsion by their characteristic cascade decay through charm particles. This sort of signature would have a completely negligible background. The experiment would have the unique feature of being able to be sensitive to lifetimes as small as those expected for beauty, i.e. $10^{-14}$s < $\\tau$ < $10^{-13}$s. \\\\ Interesting events would be selected by the identification of three muons in the final state, coming from three of the four possible semi-leptonic decays of beauty of charmed particles. Muons would be identified in a hadron absorber equipped with three x-y plane hodoscopes, and 11 x-y-z planes of MWPC. \\\\Although the final sample of events to scan would be the 3 $\\mu$-events resulting from off-line analysis, it is intended to record data for all two-muon events. \\\\ A total of 67 stacks with approximate dimensions 15 x 10 x 5 cm$^{3}$ would be aligned with ...

  14. Laser Direct Writing and Selective Metallization of Metallic Circuits for Integrated Wireless Devices.

    Cai, Jinguang; Lv, Chao; Watanabe, Akira

    2018-01-10

    Portable and wearable devices have attracted wide research attention due to their intimate relations with human daily life. As basic structures in the devices, the preparation of high-conductive metallic circuits or micro-circuits on flexible substrates should be facile, cost-effective, and easily integrated with other electronic units. In this work, high-conductive carbon/Ni composite structures were prepared by using a facile laser direct writing method, followed by an electroless Ni plating process, which exhibit a 3-order lower sheet resistance of less than 0.1 ohm/sq compared to original structures before plating, showing the potential for practical use. The carbon/Ni composite structures exhibited a certain flexibility and excellent anti-scratch property due to the tight deposition of Ni layers on carbon surfaces. On the basis of this approach, a wireless charging and storage device on a polyimide film was demonstrated by integrating an outer rectangle carbon/Ni composite coil for harvesting electromagnetic waves and an inner carbon micro-supercapacitor for energy storage, which can be fast charged wirelessly by a commercial wireless charger. Furthermore, a near-field communication (NFC) tag was prepared by combining a carbon/Ni composite coil for harvesting signals and a commercial IC chip for data storage, which can be used as an NFC tag for practical application.

  15. Predation on rose galls: parasitoids and predators determine gall size through directional selection.

    Zoltán László

    Full Text Available Both predators and parasitoids can have significant effects on species' life history traits, such as longevity or clutch size. In the case of gall inducers, sporadically there is evidence to suggest that both vertebrate predation and insect parasitoid attack may shape the optimal gall size. While the effects of parasitoids have been studied in detail, the influence of vertebrate predation is less well-investigated. To better understand this aspect of gall size evolution, we studied vertebrate predation on galls of Diplolepis rosae on rose (Rosa canina shrubs. We measured predation frequency, predation incidence, and predation rate in a large-scale observational field study, as well as an experimental field study. Our combined results suggest that, similarly to parasitoids, vertebrate predation makes a considerable contribution to mortality of gall inducer larvae. On the other hand, its influence on gall size is in direct contrast to the effect of parasitoids, as frequency of vertebrate predation increases with gall size. This suggests that the balance between predation and parasitoid attack shapes the optimal size of D. rosae galls.

  16. Expression, transport, and axonal sorting of neuronal CCL21 in large dense-core vesicles

    de Jong, Eiko K.; Vinet, Jonathan; Stanulovic, Vesna S.; Meijer, Michel; Wesseling, Evelyn; Sjollema, Klaas; Boddeke, Hendrikus W. G. M.; Biber, Knut

    2008-01-01

    Neurons are highly polarized cells, and neuron-neuron communication is based on directed transport and release of neurotransmitters, neuropeptides, and neurotrophins. Directed communication may also be attributed to neuron-microglia signaling, since neuronal damage can induce a microglia reaction at

  17. Expression, transport, and axonal sorting of neuronal CCL21 in large dense-core vesicles.

    Jong, E.K. de; Vinet, J.; Stanulovic, V.S.; Meijer, M.; Wesseling, E.; Sjollema, K.; Boddeke, H.W.; Biber, K.

    2008-01-01

    Neurons are highly polarized cells, and neuron-neuron communication is based on directed transport and release of neurotransmitters, neuropeptides, and neurotrophins. Directed communication may also be attributed to neuron-microglia signaling, since neuronal damage can induce a microglia reaction at

  18. Fluorine-Directed Glycosylation Enables the Stereocontrolled Synthesis of Selective SGLT2 Inhibitors for Type II Diabetes.

    Sadurní, Anna; Kehr, Gerald; Ahlqvist, Marie; Wernevik, Johan; Sjögren, Helena Peilot; Kankkonen, Cecilia; Knerr, Laurent; Gilmour, Ryan

    2018-02-26

    Inhibition of the sodium-glucose co-transporters (SGLT1 and SGLT2) is a validated strategy to address the increasing prevalence of type II diabetes mellitus. However, achieving selective inhibition of human SGLT1 or SGLT2 remains challenging. Orally available small molecule drugs based on the d-glucose core of the natural product Gliflozin have proven to be clinically effective in this regard, effectively impeding glucose reabsorption. Herein, we disclose the influence of molecular editing with fluorine at the C2 position of the pyranose ring of Phlorizin analogues Remogliflozin Etabonate and Dapagliflozin (Farxiga ® ) to concurrently direct β-selective glycosylation, as is required for biological efficacy, and enhance aspects of the physicochemical profile. Given the abundance of glycosylated pharmaceuticals in diabetes therapy that contain a β-configured d-glucose nucleus, it is envisaged that this strategy may prove to be expansive. © 2018 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  19. Reward inference by primate prefrontal and striatal neurons.

    Pan, Xiaochuan; Fan, Hongwei; Sawa, Kosuke; Tsuda, Ichiro; Tsukada, Minoru; Sakagami, Masamichi

    2014-01-22

    The brain contains multiple yet distinct systems involved in reward prediction. To understand the nature of these processes, we recorded single-unit activity from the lateral prefrontal cortex (LPFC) and the striatum in monkeys performing a reward inference task using an asymmetric reward schedule. We found that neurons both in the LPFC and in the striatum predicted reward values for stimuli that had been previously well experienced with set reward quantities in the asymmetric reward task. Importantly, these LPFC neurons could predict the reward value of a stimulus using transitive inference even when the monkeys had not yet learned the stimulus-reward association directly; whereas these striatal neurons did not show such an ability. Nevertheless, because there were two set amounts of reward (large and small), the selected striatal neurons were able to exclusively infer the reward value (e.g., large) of one novel stimulus from a pair after directly experiencing the alternative stimulus with the other reward value (e.g., small). Our results suggest that although neurons that predict reward value for old stimuli in the LPFC could also do so for new stimuli via transitive inference, those in the striatum could only predict reward for new stimuli via exclusive inference. Moreover, the striatum showed more complex functions than was surmised previously for model-free learning.

  20. Induced dopaminergic neurons: A new promise for Parkinson’s disease

    Zhimin Xu

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Motor symptoms that define Parkinson’s disease (PD are caused by the selective loss of nigral dopaminergic (DA neurons. Cell replacement therapy for PD has been focused on midbrain DA neurons derived from human fetal mesencephalic tissue, human embryonic stem cells (hESC or human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC. Recent development in the direct conversion of human fibroblasts to induced dopaminergic (iDA neurons offers new opportunities for transplantation study and disease modeling in PD. The iDA neurons are generated directly from human fibroblasts in a short period of time, bypassing lengthy differentiation process from human pluripotent stem cells and the concern for potentially tumorigenic mitotic cells. They exhibit functional dopaminergic neurotransmission and relieve locomotor symptoms in animal models of Parkinson’s disease. In this review, we will discuss this recent development and its implications to Parkinson’s disease research and therapy.

  1. Utilizing ras signaling pathway to direct selective replication of herpes simplex virus-1.

    Weihong Pan

    Full Text Available Re-engineering the tropism of viruses is an attractive translational strategy for targeting cancer cells. The Ras signal transduction pathway is a central hub for a variety of pro-oncogenic events with a fundamental role in normal and neoplastic physiology. In this work we were interested in linking Ras activation to HSV-1 replication in a direct manner in order to generate a novel oncolytic herpes virus which can target cancer cells. To establish such link, we developed a mutant HSV-1 in which the expression of ICP4 (infected cell protein-4, a viral protein necessary for replication is controlled by activation of ELK, a transcription factor down-stream of the Ras pathway and mainly activated by ERK (extracellular signal-regulated kinase, an important Ras effector pathway. This mutant HSV-1 was named as Signal-Smart 1 (SS1. A series of prostate cells were infected with the SS1 virus. Cells with elevated levels of ELK activation were preferentially infected by the SS1 virus, as demonstrated by increased levels of viral progeny, herpetic glycoprotein C and overall SS1 viral protein production. Upon exposure to SS1, the proliferation, invasiveness and colony formation capabilities of prostate cancer cells with increased ELK activation were significantly decreased (p<0.05, while the rate of apoptosis/necrosis in these cells was increased. Additionally, high Ras signaling cells infected with SS1 showed a prominent arrest in the G1 phase of the cell cycle as compared to cells exposed to parental HSV-1. The results of this study reveal the potential for re-modeling the host-herpes interaction to specifically interfere with the life of cancer cells with increased Ras signaling. SS1 also serves as a "prototype" for development of a family of signal-smart viruses which can target cancer cells on the basis of their signaling portfolio.

  2. Directed Selection of Recombinant Human Monoclonal Antibodies to Herpes Simplex Virus Glycoproteins from Phage Display Libraries

    Sanna, Pietro Paolo; Williamson, R. Anthony; de Logu, Alessandro; Bloom, Floyd E.; Burton, Dennis R.

    1995-07-01

    Human monoclonal antibodies have considerable potential in the prophylaxis and treatment of viral disease. However, only a few such antibodies suitable for clinical use have been produced to date. We have previously shown that large panels of human recombinant monoclonal antibodies against a plethora of infectious agents, including herpes simplex virus types 1 and 2, can be established from phage display libraries. Here we demonstrate that facile cloning of recombinant Fab fragments against specific viral proteins in their native conformation can be accomplished by panning phage display libraries against viral glycoproteins "captured" from infected cell extracts by specific monoclonal antibodies immobilized on ELISA plates. We have tested this strategy by isolating six neutralizing recombinant antibodies specific for herpes simplex glycoprotein gD or gB, some of which are against conformationally sensitive epitopes. By using defined monoclonal antibodies for the antigen-capture step, this method can be used for the isolation of antibodies to specific regions and epitopes within the target viral protein. For instance, monoclonal antibodies to a nonneutralizing epitope can be used in the capture step to clone antibodies to neutralizing epitopes, or antibodies to a neutralizing epitope can be used to clone antibodies to a different neutralizing epitope. Furthermore, by using capturing antibodies to more immunodominant epitopes, one can direct the cloning to less immunogenic ones. This method should be of value in generating antibodies to be used both in the prophylaxis and treatment of viral infections and in the characterization of the mechanisms of antibody protective actions at the molecular level.

  3. Biota monitoring under the Water Framework Directive: On tissue choice and fish species selection.

    Fliedner, Annette; Rüdel, Heinz; Lohmann, Nina; Buchmeier, Georgia; Koschorreck, Jan

    2018-04-01

    The study addresses the topic of suitable matrices for chemical analysis in fish monitoring and discusses the effects of data normalization in the context of the European Water Framework Directive (WFD). Differences between species are considered by comparing three frequently monitored species of different trophic levels, i.e., chub (Squalius cephalus, n = 28), (bream, Abramis brama, n = 11), and perch (Perca fluviatilis, n = 19) sampled in the German Danube. The WFD priority substances dioxins, furans and dioxin-like polychlorinated biphenyls (PCDD/F + dl-PCB), polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDE), α-hexabromocyclododecane (α-HBCDD), hexachlorobenzene (HCB), mercury (Hg), and perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS) as well as non-dioxin-like (ndl)-PCB were analyzed separately in fillet and carcass and whole body concentrations were calculated. Hg was analyzed in individual fish fillets and carcasses, all other substances were determined in pool samples, which were compiled on the basis of fish size (3 chub pools, 1 bream pool, 2 perch pools). The data were normalized to 5% lipid weight (or 26% dry mass in the case of Hg and PFOS) for comparison between matrices and species. Hg concentrations were generally higher in fillet than in whole fish (mean whole fish-to-fillet ratio: 0.7) whereas all other substances were mostly higher in whole fish. In the case of lipophilic substances these differences leveled after lipid normalization. Significant correlations (p ≤ .05) were detected between Hg and fish weight and age. Hg concentrations varied least among younger fish. PCDD/F, dl-PCB, ndl-PCB, PBDE, α-HBCDD and HCB correlated significantly (p ≤ .05) with lipid concentrations. Fillet-to-whole fish conversion equations and/or conversion factors were derived for all substances except α-HCBDD. Although more data also for individual fish would be desirable the results are nevertheless a step on the way to translate fillet concentrations of priority

  4. Attenuated Response to Methamphetamine Sensitization and Deficits in Motor Learning and Memory after Selective Deletion of [beta]-Catenin in Dopamine Neurons

    Diaz-Ruiz, Oscar; Zhang, YaJun; Shan, Lufei; Malik, Nasir; Hoffman, Alexander F.; Ladenheim, Bruce; Cadet, Jean Lud; Lupica, Carl R.; Tagliaferro, Adriana; Brusco, Alicia; Backman, Cristina M.

    2012-01-01

    In the present study, we analyzed mice with a targeted deletion of [beta]-catenin in DA neurons (DA-[beta]cat KO mice) to address the functional significance of this molecule in the shaping of synaptic responses associated with motor learning and following exposure to drugs of abuse. Relative to controls, DA-[beta]cat KO mice showed significant…

  5. Orexin neurons receive glycinergic innervations.

    Mari Hondo

    Full Text Available Glycine, a nonessential amino-acid that acts as an inhibitory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system, is currently used as a dietary supplement to improve the quality of sleep, but its mechanism of action is poorly understood. We confirmed the effects of glycine on sleep/wakefulness behavior in mice when administered peripherally. Glycine administration increased non-rapid eye movement (NREM sleep time and decreased the amount and mean episode duration of wakefulness when administered in the dark period. Since peripheral administration of glycine induced fragmentation of sleep/wakefulness states, which is a characteristic of orexin deficiency, we examined the effects of glycine on orexin neurons. The number of Fos-positive orexin neurons markedly decreased after intraperitoneal administration of glycine to mice. To examine whether glycine acts directly on orexin neurons, we examined the effects of glycine on orexin neurons by patch-clamp electrophysiology. Glycine directly induced hyperpolarization and cessation of firing of orexin neurons. These responses were inhibited by a specific glycine receptor antagonist, strychnine. Triple-labeling immunofluorescent analysis showed close apposition of glycine transporter 2 (GlyT2-immunoreactive glycinergic fibers onto orexin-immunoreactive neurons. Immunoelectron microscopic analysis revealed that GlyT2-immunoreactive terminals made symmetrical synaptic contacts with somata and dendrites of orexin neurons. Double-labeling immunoelectron microscopy demonstrated that glycine receptor alpha subunits were localized in the postsynaptic membrane of symmetrical inhibitory synapses on orexin neurons. Considering the importance of glycinergic regulation during REM sleep, our observations suggest that glycine injection might affect the activity of orexin neurons, and that glycinergic inhibition of orexin neurons might play a role in physiological sleep regulation.

  6. How to make spinal motor neurons.

    Davis-Dusenbery, Brandi N; Williams, Luis A; Klim, Joseph R; Eggan, Kevin

    2014-02-01

    All muscle movements, including breathing, walking, and fine motor skills rely on the function of the spinal motor neuron to transmit signals from the brain to individual muscle groups. Loss of spinal motor neuron function underlies several neurological disorders for which treatment has been hampered by the inability to obtain sufficient quantities of primary motor neurons to perform mechanistic studies or drug screens. Progress towards overcoming this challenge has been achieved through the synthesis of developmental biology paradigms and advances in stem cell and reprogramming technology, which allow the production of motor neurons in vitro. In this Primer, we discuss how the logic of spinal motor neuron development has been applied to allow generation of motor neurons either from pluripotent stem cells by directed differentiation and transcriptional programming, or from somatic cells by direct lineage conversion. Finally, we discuss methods to evaluate the molecular and functional properties of motor neurons generated through each of these techniques.

  7. Directed surfaces structures and interfaces for enhanced electrocatalyst activity, selectivity, and stability for energy conversion reactions

    Jaramillo, Thomas F. [Stanford Univ., CA (United States). Dept. of Chemical Engineering. Shriram Center

    2016-04-20

    In this project, we have employed a systematic approach to develop active, selective, and stable catalyst materials for important electrochemical reactions involving energy conversion. In particular, we have focused our attention on developing active catalyst materials for the hydrogen evolution reaction (HER), oxygen evolution reaction (OER) and oxygen reduction reaction (ORR). HER: We have synthesized and investigated several highly active and acid stable non-precious metal HER catalysts, including: [Mo3S13]2- nanoclusters (Nature Chemistry, 2014) and molybdenum phosphosulfide (MoP|S) (Angewandte Chemie, 2014). We have also aimed to engineer these catalyst formulations in a membrane electrode assembly (MEA) for fundamental studies of water electrolysis at high current densities, approximately 1 A/cm2 (ChemSusChem, 2015). We furthermore investigated transition metal phosphide (TMP) catalysts for HER by a combined experimental–theoretical approach (Energy & Environmental Science, 2015). By synthesizing different TMPs and comparing experimentally determined HER activities with the hydrogen adsorption free energies, ΔGH, calculated by density functional theory, we showed that the TMPs follow a volcano relationship for the HER. Using our combined experimental–theoretical model, we predicted that the mixed metal TMP, Fe0.5Co0.5P, should have a near-optimal ΔGH. We synthesized several mixtures of Co and Fe phosphides alloys and confirmed that Fe0.5Co0.5P exhibits the highest HER activity of the investigated TMPs (Energy & Environmental Science, 2015). The understanding gained as to how to improve catalytic activity for the HER, particularly for non-precious metal materials, is important to DOE targets for sustainable H2 production. OER: We have developed a SrIrO3/IrOx catalyst for acidic conditions (submitted, 2016). The Sr

  8. Structure-selective hot-spot Raman enhancement for direct identification and detection of trace penicilloic acid allergen in penicillin.

    Zhang, Liying; Jin, Yang; Mao, Hui; Zheng, Lei; Zhao, Jiawei; Peng, Yan; Du, Shuhu; Zhang, Zhongping

    2014-08-15

    Trace penicilloic acid allergen frequently leads to various fatal immune responses to many patients, but it is still a challenge to directly discriminate and detect its residue in penicillin by a chemosensing way. Here, we report that silver-coated gold nanoparticles (Au@Ag NPs) exhibit a structure-selective hot-spot Raman enhancement capability for direct identification and detection of trace penicilloic acid in penicillin. It has been demonstrated that penicilloic acid can very easily link Au@Ag NPs together by its two carboxyl groups, locating itself spontaneously at the interparticle of Au@Ag NPs to form strong Raman hot-spot. At the critical concentration inducing the nanoparticle aggregation, Raman-enhanced effect of penicilloic acid is ~60,000 folds higher than that of penicillin. In particular, the selective Raman enhancement to the two carboxyl groups makes the peak of carboxyl group at C6 of penicilloic acid appear as a new Raman signal due to the opening of β-lactam ring of penicillin. The surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) nanoparticle sensor reaches a sensitive limit lower than the prescribed 1.0‰ penicilloic acid residue in penicillin. The novel strategy to examine allergen is more rapid, convenient and inexpensive than the conventional separation-based assay methods. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. A meta-selective C-H borylation directed by a secondary interaction between ligand and substrate

    Kuninobu, Yoichiro; Ida, Haruka; Nishi, Mitsumi; Kanai, Motomu

    2015-09-01

    Regioselective C-H bond transformations are potentially the most efficient method for the synthesis of organic molecules. However, the presence of many C-H bonds in organic molecules and the high activation barrier for these reactions make these transformations difficult. Directing groups in the reaction substrate are often used to control regioselectivity, which has been especially successful for the ortho-selective functionalization of aromatic substrates. Here, we describe an iridium-catalysed meta-selective C-H borylation of aromatic compounds using a newly designed catalytic system. The bipyridine-derived ligand that binds iridium contains a pendant urea moiety. A secondary interaction between this urea and a hydrogen-bond acceptor in the substrate places the iridium in close proximity to the meta-C-H bond and thus controls the regioselectivity. 1H NMR studies and control experiments support the participation of hydrogen bonds in inducing regioselectivity. Reversible direction of the catalyst through hydrogen bonds is a versatile concept for regioselective C-H transformations.

  10. A New Population of Parvocellular Oxytocin Neurons Controlling Magnocellular Neuron Activity and Inflammatory Pain Processing.

    Eliava, Marina; Melchior, Meggane; Knobloch-Bollmann, H Sophie; Wahis, Jérôme; da Silva Gouveia, Miriam; Tang, Yan; Ciobanu, Alexandru Cristian; Triana Del Rio, Rodrigo; Roth, Lena C; Althammer, Ferdinand; Chavant, Virginie; Goumon, Yannick; Gruber, Tim; Petit-Demoulière, Nathalie; Busnelli, Marta; Chini, Bice; Tan, Linette L; Mitre, Mariela; Froemke, Robert C; Chao, Moses V; Giese, Günter; Sprengel, Rolf; Kuner, Rohini; Poisbeau, Pierrick; Seeburg, Peter H; Stoop, Ron; Charlet, Alexandre; Grinevich, Valery

    2016-03-16

    Oxytocin (OT) is a neuropeptide elaborated by the hypothalamic paraventricular (PVN) and supraoptic (SON) nuclei. Magnocellular OT neurons of these nuclei innervate numerous forebrain regions and release OT into the blood from the posterior pituitary. The PVN also harbors parvocellular OT cells that project to the brainstem and spinal cord, but their function has not been directly assessed. Here, we identified a subset of approximately 30 parvocellular OT neurons, with collateral projections onto magnocellular OT neurons and neurons of deep layers of the spinal cord. Evoked OT release from these OT neurons suppresses nociception and promotes analgesia in an animal model of inflammatory pain. Our findings identify a new population of OT neurons that modulates nociception in a two tier process: (1) directly by release of OT from axons onto sensory spinal cord neurons and inhibiting their activity and (2) indirectly by stimulating OT release from SON neurons into the periphery. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Characterization of Cr-O cermet solar selective coatings deposited by using direct-current magnetron sputtering technology

    Lee, Kil Dong

    2006-01-01

    Cr-O (Cr-CrO) cermet solar selective coatings with a double cermet layer film structure were prepared by using a special direct-current (dc) magnetron sputtering technology. The typical film structure from the surface to the bottom substrate was an Al 2 O 3 anti-reflection layer on a double Cr-O cermet layer on an Al metal infrared reflection layer. The deposited Cr-O cermet solar selective coating had an absorptance of α = 0.93 - 0.95 and an emittance of ε = 0.09 - 0.10(100 .deg. C). The absorption layers of the Cr-O cermet coatings deposited on glass and silicon substrates were identified as being amorphous by using X-ray diffraction (XRD). Atomic force microscopy (AFM) showed that Cr-O cermet layers were very smooth and that their grain sizes were very small. The result of thermal stability test showed that the Cr-O cermet solar selective coating was stable for use at temperatures of under 400 .deg. C.

  12. Genomic architecture of habitat-related divergence and signature of directional selection in the body shapes of Gnathopogon fishes.

    Kakioka, Ryo; Kokita, Tomoyuki; Kumada, Hiroki; Watanabe, Katsutoshi; Okuda, Noboru

    2015-08-01

    Evolution of ecomorphologically relevant traits such as body shapes is important to colonize and persist in a novel environment. Habitat-related adaptive divergence of these traits is therefore common among animals. We studied the genomic architecture of habitat-related divergence in the body shape of Gnathopogon fishes, a novel example of lake-stream ecomorphological divergence, and tested for the action of directional selection on body shape differentiation. Compared to stream-dwelling Gnathopogon elongatus, the sister species Gnathopogon caerulescens, exclusively inhabiting a large ancient lake, had an elongated body, increased proportion of the caudal region and small head, which would be advantageous in the limnetic environment. Using an F2 interspecific cross between the two Gnathopogon species (195 individuals), quantitative trait locus (QTL) analysis with geometric morphometric quantification of body shape and restriction-site associated DNA sequencing-derived markers (1622 loci) identified 26 significant QTLs associated with the interspecific differences of body shape-related traits. These QTLs had small to moderate effects, supporting polygenic inheritance of the body shape-related traits. Each QTL was mostly located on different genomic regions, while colocalized QTLs were detected for some ecomorphologically relevant traits that are proxy of body and caudal peduncle depths, suggesting different degree of modularity among traits. The directions of the body shape QTLs were mostly consistent with the interspecific difference, and QTL sign test suggested a genetic signature of directional selection in the body shape divergence. Thus, we successfully elucidated the genomic architecture underlying the adaptive changes of the quantitative and complex morphological trait in a novel system. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  13. Three Types of Cortical L5 Neurons that Differ in Brain-Wide Connectivity and Function

    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

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

    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.