Sample records for primary cortical neuron

  1. Stearic acid protects primary cultured cortical neurons against oxidative stress

    Ze-jian WANG; Cui-ling LIANG; Guang-mei LI; Cai-yi YU; Ming YIN


    Aim: To observe the effects of stearic acid against oxidative stress in primary cultured cortical neurons. Methods: Cortical neurons were exposed to glutamate,hydrogen peroxide (H202), or NaN3 insult in the presence or absence of stearic acid. Cell viability of cortical neurons was determined by MTT assay and LDH release. Endogenous antioxidant enzymes activity[superoxide dismutases (SOD),glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px), and catalase (CAT)] and lipid peroxidation in cultured cortical neurons were evaluated using commercial kits. {3-[1(p-chloro-benzyl)-5-(isopropyl)-3-t-butylthiondol-2-yl]-2,2-dimethylpropanoic acid, Na}[MK886; 5 pmol/L; a noncompetitive inhibitor of proliferator-activated receptor(PPAR)α], bisphenol A diglycidyl ether (BADGE; 100 μmol/L; an antagonist of PPARγ), and cycloheximide (CHX; 30 μmol/L, an inhibitor of protein synthesis)were tested for their effects on the neuroprotection afforded by stearic acid.Western blotting was used to determine the PPARγ protein level in cortical neurons.Results: Stearic acid dose-dependently protected cortical neurons against glutamate or H202 injury and increased glutamate uptake in cultured neurons.This protection was concomitant to the inhibition of lipid peroxidation and to the promotion activity of Cu/Zn SOD and CAT in cultured cortical neurons. Its neuroprotective effects were completely blocked by BADGE and CHX. After incubation with H2O2 for 24 h, the expression of the PPARγ protein decreased significantly (P<0.05), and the inhibitory effect of H2O2 on the expression of PPARγ can be attenuated by stearic acid. Conclusion: Stearic acid can protect cortical neurons against oxidative stress by boosting the internal antioxidant enzymes.Its neuroprotective effect may be mainly mediated by the activation of PPARγ and new protein synthesis in cortical neurons.

  2. A Modified Technique for Culturing Primary Fetal Rat Cortical Neurons

    Sui-Yi Xu


    Full Text Available The study explored a modified primary culture system for fetal rat cortical neurons. Day E18 embryos from pregnant Sprague Dawley rats were microdissected under a stereoscope. To minimize enzymatic damage to the cultured neurons, we applied a sequential digestion protocol using papain and Dnase I. The resulting sifted cell suspension was seeded at a density of 50,000 cells per cm2 onto 0.1 mg/mL L-PLL-covered vessels. After a four-hour incubation in high-glucose Dulbecco’s Modified Eagle’s Medium (HG-DMEM to allow the neurons to adhere, the media was changed to neurobasal medium that was refreshed by changing half of the volume after three days followed by a complete medium change every week. The cells displayed progressively robust neurite extension, and nonneuronal-like cells could barely be detected by five days in vitro (DIV; cell growth was still substantial at 14 DIV. Neurons were identified by β-tubulin III immunofluorescence, and neuronal purity within the cultures was assessed at over 95% by both flow cytometry and by dark-field counting of β-tubulin III-positive cells. These results suggest that the protocol was successful and that the high purity of neurons in this system could be used as the basis for generating various cell models of neurological disease.

  3. Sonic Hedgehog Promotes Neurite Outgrowth of Primary Cortical Neurons Through Up-Regulating BDNF Expression.

    He, Weiliang; Cui, Lili; Zhang, Cong; Zhang, Xiangjian; He, Junna; Xie, Yanzhao


    Sonic hedgehog (Shh), a secreted glycoprotein factor, can activate the Shh pathway, which has been implicated in neuronal polarization involving neurite outgrowth. However, little evidence is available about the effect of Shh on neurite outgrowth in primary cortical neurons and its potential mechanism. Here, we revealed that Shh increased neurite outgrowth in primary cortical neurons, while the Shh pathway inhibitor (cyclopamine, CPM) partially suppressed Shh-induced neurite outgrowth. Similar results were found for the expressions of Shh and Patched genes in Shh-induced primary cortical neurons. Moreover, Shh increased the levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) not only in lysates and in culture medium but also in the longest neurites of primary cortical neurons, which was partially blocked by CPM. In addition, blocking of BDNF action suppressed Shh-mediated neurite elongation in primary cortical neurons. In conclusion, these findings suggest that Shh promotes neurite outgrowth in primary cortical neurons at least partially through modulating BDNF expression.

  4. Bilaminar co-culture of primary rat cortical neurons and glia.

    Shimizu, Saori; Abt, Anna; Meucci, Olimpia


    This video will guide you through the process of culturing rat cortical neurons in the presence of a glial feeder layer, a system known as a bilaminar or co-culture model. This system is suitable for a variety of experimental needs requiring either a glass or plastic growth substrate and can also be used for culture of other types of neurons. Rat cortical neurons obtained from the late embryonic stage (E17) are plated on glass coverslips or tissue culture dishes facing a feeder layer of glia grown on dishes or plastic coverslips (known as Thermanox), respectively. The choice between the two configurations depends on the specific experimental technique used, which may require, or not, that neurons are grown on glass (e.g. calcium imaging versus Western blot). The glial feeder layer, an astroglia-enriched secondary culture of mixed glia, is separately prepared from the cortices of newborn rat pups (P2-4) prior to the neuronal dissection. A major advantage of this culture system as compared to a culture of neurons only is the support of neuronal growth, survival, and differentiation provided by trophic factors secreted from the glial feeder layer, which more accurately resembles the brain environment in vivo. Furthermore, the co-culture can be used to study neuronal-glial interactions(1). At the same time, glia contamination in the neuronal layer is prevented by different means (low density culture, addition of mitotic inhibitors, lack of serum and use of optimized culture medium) leading to a virtually pure neuronal layer, comparable to other established methods(1-3). Neurons can be easily separated from the glial layer at any time during culture and used for different experimental applications ranging from electrophysiology(4), cellular and molecular biology(5-8), biochemistry(5), imaging and microscopy(4,6,7,9,10). The primary neurons extend axons and dendrites to form functional synapses(11), a process which is not observed in neuronal cell lines, although some

  5. Coupling (reduced Graphene Oxide to Mammalian Primary Cortical Neurons In Vitro

    Antonina M. Monaco


    Full Text Available Neuronal nanoscale interfacing aims at identifying or designing nanostructured smart materials and validating their applications as novel biocompatible scaffolds with active properties for neuronal networks formation, nerve regeneration, and bidirectional biosignal coupling. Among several carbon-based nanomaterials, Graphene recently attracted great interest for biological applications, given its unique mechanical, optical, electronic properties, and its recent technological applications. Here we explore the use of Graphene Oxide (GO and reduced Graphene Oxide (rGO as biocompatible culture substrates for primary neuronal networks developing ex vivo. We quantitatively studied cytotoxicity and cellular viability as well as single-cell and network-level electrophysiological properties of neurons in vitro. Our results confirm previous reports, employing immortalized cell lines or pluripotent stem cells, and extend them to mammalian primary cortical neurons: GO and rGO are biocompatible substrates and do not alter neuronal excitable properties.

  6. Influenza Virus Induces Inflammatory Response in Mouse Primary Cortical Neurons with Limited Viral Replication

    Gefei Wang


    Full Text Available Unlike stereotypical neurotropic viruses, influenza A viruses have been detected in the brain tissues of human and animal models. To investigate the interaction between neurons and influenza A viruses, mouse cortical neurons were isolated, infected with human H1N1 influenza virus, and then examined for the production of various inflammatory molecules involved in immune response. We found that replication of the influenza virus in neurons was limited, although early viral transcription was not affected. Virus-induced neuron viability decreased at 6 h postinfection (p.i. but increased at 24 h p.i. depending upon the viral strain. Virus-induced apoptosis and cytopathy in primary cortical neurons were not apparent at 24 h p.i. The mRNA levels of inflammatory cytokines, chemokines, and type I interferons were upregulated at 6 h and 24 h p.i. These results indicate that the influenza virus induces inflammatory response in mouse primary cortical neurons with limited viral replication. The cytokines released in viral infection-induced neuroinflammation might play critical roles in influenza encephalopathy, rather than in viral replication-induced cytopathy.

  7. Baicalein reverts L-valine-induced persistent sodium current up-modulation in primary cortical neurons.

    Caioli, Silvia; Candelotti, Elena; Pedersen, Jens Z; Saba, Luana; Antonini, Alessia; Incerpi, Sandra; Zona, Cristina


    L-valine is a branched-chain amino acid (BCAA) largely used as dietary integrator by athletes and involved in some inherited rare diseases such as maple syrup urine disease. This pathology is caused by an altered BCAA metabolism with the accumulation of toxic keto acids in tissues and body fluids with consequent severe neurological symptoms. In animal models of BCAA accumulation, increased oxidative stress levels and lipid peroxidation have been reported. The aim of this study was to analyze both whether high BCAA concentrations in neurons induce reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and whether, by performing electrophysiological recordings, the neuronal functional properties are modified. Our results demonstrate that in primary cortical cultures, a high dose of valine increases ROS production and provokes neuronal hyperexcitability because the action potential frequencies and the persistent sodium current amplitudes increase significantly compared to non-treated neurons. Since Baicalein, a flavone obtained from the Scutellaria root, has been shown to act as a strong antioxidant with neuroprotective effects, we evaluated its possible antioxidant activity in primary cortical neurons chronically exposed to L-valine. The preincubation of cortical neurons with Baicalein prevents the ROS production and is able to revert both the neuronal hyperexcitability and the increase of the persistent sodium current, indicating a direct correlation between the ROS production and the altered physiological parameters. In conclusion, our data show that the electrophysiological alterations of cortical neurons elicited by high valine concentration are due to the increase in ROS production, suggesting much caution in the intake of BCAA dietary integrators.

  8. Tangentially migrating neurons assemble a primary cilium that promotes their reorientation to the cortical plate.

    Baudoin, Jean-Pierre; Viou, Lucie; Launay, Pierre-Serge; Luccardini, Camilla; Espeso Gil, Sergio; Kiyasova, Vera; Irinopoulou, Théano; Alvarez, Chantal; Rio, Jean-Paul; Boudier, Thomas; Lechaire, Jean-Pierre; Kessaris, Nicoletta; Spassky, Nathalie; Métin, Christine


    In migrating neurons, the centrosome nucleates and anchors a polarized network of microtubules that directs organelle movements. We report here that the mother centriole of neurons migrating tangentially from the medial ganglionic eminence (MGE) assembles a short primary cilium and exposes this cilium to the cell surface by docking to the plasma membrane in the leading process. Primary cilia are built by intraflagellar transport (IFT), which is also required for Sonic hedgehog (Shh) signal transduction in vertebrates. We show that Shh pathway perturbations influenced the leading process morphology and dynamics of MGE cells. Whereas Shh favored the exit of MGE cells away from their tangential migratory paths in the developing cortex, cyclopamine or invalidation of IFT genes maintained MGE cells in the tangential paths. Our findings show that signals transmitted through the primary cilium promote the escape of future GABAergic interneurons from their tangential routes to colonize the cortical plate.

  9. Cell Signaling Mechanisms by which Geniposide Regulates Insulin- Degrading Enzyme Expression in Primary Cortical Neurons.

    Zhang, Yonglan; Xia, Zhining; Liu, Jianhui; Yin, Fei


    An increasing number of studies have demonstrated that insulin-degrading enzyme (IDE) plays an essential role in both the degradation and its activity of β-amyloid (Aβ). Therefore, the regulation of IDE expression and/or modification of IDE-dependent actions are two emerging strategies for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease (AD). We previously observed that geniposide, a novel agonist of glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor (GLP-1R), could attenuate Aβ-induced neurotoxicity by regulating the expression of IDE in primary cortical neurons. However, the signal transduction mechanisms underlying this effect were not elucidated. The present study, therefore examined and explored the cell signaling transduction and molecular mechanisms by which geniposide induces the expression of IDE in primary cortical neurons. The current study revealed that LY294002 (an inhibitor for phosphatidyl inositol 3-kinase, PI3K), PP1 (inhibitor for c-Src), GW9662 (antagonist for peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ, PPARγ), H89 (an inhibitor for protein kinase A, PKA) and AG1478 (an antagonist for epidermal growth factor receptor, EGFR) prohibited the up-regulation of IDE induced by geniposide in primary cortical neurons. Further, geniposide also enhanced the phosphorylation of PPARγ and accelerated the release of phosphorylated FoxO1 (forkhead box O1) from nuclear fraction to the cytosol. Moreover, geniposide directly activated the activity of IDE promoter in PC12 cells, which confirmed the presence of the GLP-1 receptor. Taken together, our findings reveal for the first time the cell signaling transduction pathway of geniposide regulating the expression of IDE in neurons.

  10. Ect2, an ortholog of Drosophila Pebble, regulates formation of growth cones in primary cortical neurons

    Tsuji, Takahiro; Higashida, Chiharu; Aoki, Yoshihiko; Islam, Mohammad Saharul; Dohmoto, Mitsuko; Higashida, Haruhiro


    In collaboration with Marshall Nirenberg, we performed in vivo RNA interference (RNAi) genome-wide screening in Drosophila embryos. Pebble has been shown to be involved in Drosophila neuronal development. We have also reported that depletion of Ect2, a mammalian ortholog of Pebble, induces differentiation in NG108-15 neuronal cells. However, the precise role of Ect2 in neuronal development has yet to be studied. Here, we confirmed in PC12 pheochromocytoma cells that inhibition of Ect2 expression by RNAi stimulated neurite outgrowth, and in the mouse embryonic cortex that Ect2 was accumulated throughout the ventricular and subventricular zones with neuronal progenitor cells. Next, the effects of Ect2 depletion were studied in primary cultures of mouse embryonic cortical neurons: Loss of Ect2 did not affect the differentiation stages of neuritogenesis, the number of neurites, or axon length, while the numbers of growth cones and growth cone-like structures were increased. Taken together, our results suggest that Ect2 contributes to neuronal morphological differentiation through regulation of growth cone dynamics. PMID:22366651

  11. Lactate modulates the activity of primary cortical neurons through a receptor-mediated pathway.

    Luigi Bozzo

    Full Text Available Lactate is increasingly described as an energy substrate of the brain. Beside this still debated metabolic role, lactate may have other effects on brain cells. Here, we describe lactate as a neuromodulator, able to influence the activity of cortical neurons. Neuronal excitability of mouse primary neurons was monitored by calcium imaging. When applied in conjunction with glucose, lactate induced a decrease in the spontaneous calcium spiking frequency of neurons. The effect was reversible and concentration dependent (IC50 ∼4.2 mM. To test whether lactate effects are dependent on energy metabolism, we applied the closely related substrate pyruvate (5 mM or switched to different glucose concentrations (0.5 or 10 mM. None of these conditions reproduced the effect of lactate. Recently, a Gi protein-coupled receptor for lactate called HCA1 has been introduced. To test if this receptor is implicated in the observed lactate sensitivity, we incubated cells with pertussis toxin (PTX an inhibitor of Gi-protein. PTX prevented the decrease of neuronal activity by L-lactate. Moreover 3,5-dyhydroxybenzoic acid, a specific agonist of the HCA1 receptor, mimicked the action of lactate. This study indicates that lactate operates a negative feedback on neuronal activity by a receptor-mediated mechanism, independent from its intracellular metabolism.

  12. Lactate modulates the activity of primary cortical neurons through a receptor-mediated pathway.

    Bozzo, Luigi; Puyal, Julien; Chatton, Jean-Yves


    Lactate is increasingly described as an energy substrate of the brain. Beside this still debated metabolic role, lactate may have other effects on brain cells. Here, we describe lactate as a neuromodulator, able to influence the activity of cortical neurons. Neuronal excitability of mouse primary neurons was monitored by calcium imaging. When applied in conjunction with glucose, lactate induced a decrease in the spontaneous calcium spiking frequency of neurons. The effect was reversible and concentration dependent (IC50 ∼4.2 mM). To test whether lactate effects are dependent on energy metabolism, we applied the closely related substrate pyruvate (5 mM) or switched to different glucose concentrations (0.5 or 10 mM). None of these conditions reproduced the effect of lactate. Recently, a Gi protein-coupled receptor for lactate called HCA1 has been introduced. To test if this receptor is implicated in the observed lactate sensitivity, we incubated cells with pertussis toxin (PTX) an inhibitor of Gi-protein. PTX prevented the decrease of neuronal activity by L-lactate. Moreover 3,5-dyhydroxybenzoic acid, a specific agonist of the HCA1 receptor, mimicked the action of lactate. This study indicates that lactate operates a negative feedback on neuronal activity by a receptor-mediated mechanism, independent from its intracellular metabolism.

  13. Ect2, an ortholog of Drosophila Pebble, regulates formation of growth cones in primary cortical neurons.

    Tsuji, Takahiro; Higashida, Chiharu; Aoki, Yoshihiko; Islam, Mohammad Saharul; Dohmoto, Mitsuko; Higashida, Haruhiro


    In collaboration with Marshall Nirenberg, we performed in vivo RNA interference (RNAi) genome-wide screening in Drosophila embryos. Pebble has been shown to be involved in Drosophila neuronal development. We have also reported that depletion of Ect2, a mammalian ortholog of Pebble, induces differentiation in NG108-15 neuronal cells. However, the precise role of Ect2 in neuronal development has yet to be studied. Here, we confirmed in PC12 pheochromocytoma cells that inhibition of Ect2 expression by RNAi stimulated neurite outgrowth, and in the mouse embryonic cortex that Ect2 was accumulated throughout the ventricular and subventricular zones with neuronal progenitor cells. Next, the effects of Ect2 depletion were studied in primary cultures of mouse embryonic cortical neurons: Loss of Ect2 did not affect the differentiation stages of neuritogenesis, the number of neurites, or axon length, while the numbers of growth cones and growth cone-like structures were increased. Taken together, our results suggest that Ect2 contributes to neuronal morphological differentiation through regulation of growth cone dynamics.

  14. Neuroprotective effects of L-carnitine against oxygenglucose deprivation in rat primary cortical neurons

    Yu Jin Kim


    Full Text Available <b>Purpose:</b> Hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy is an important cause of neonatal mortality, as this brain injury disrupts normal mitochondrial respiratory activity. Carnitine plays an essential role in mitochondrial fatty acid transport and modulates excess acyl coenzyme A levels. In this study, we investigated whether treatment of primary cultures of rat cortical neurons with L-carnitine was able to prevent neurotoxicity resulting from oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD. <b>Methods:</b> Cortical neurons were prepared from Sprague-Dawley rat embryos. L-Carnitine was applied to cultures just prior to OGD and subsequent reoxygenation. The numbers of cells that stained with acridine orange (AO and propidium iodide (PI were counted, and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH activity and reactive oxygen species (ROS levels were measured. The 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl-2,5- diphenyltetrazolium bromide assay and the terminal uridine deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated deoxyuridine triphosphate nick-end labeling assay were performed to evaluate the effect of L-carnitine (1 μM, 10 μM, and 100 μM on OGD-induced neurotoxicity. <B>Results:</b> Treatment of primary cultures of rat cortical neurons with L-carnitine significantly reduced cell necrosis and prevented apoptosis after OGD. L-Carnitine application significantly reduced the number of cells that died, as assessed by the PI/AO ratio, and also reduced ROS release in the OGD groups treated with 10 μM and 100 μM of L-carnitine compared with the untreated OGD group (P<0.05. The application of L-carnitine at 100 μM significantly decreased cytotoxicity, LDH release, and inhibited apoptosis compared to the untreated OGD group (P<0.05. <B>Conclusion:</b> L-Carnitine has neuroprotective benefits against OGD in rat primary cortical neurons in vitro.

  15. Evaluation of the Neuroactivity of ToxCast Compounds Using Multi-well Microelectrode Array Recordings in Primary Cortical Neurons

    Evaluation of the Neuroactivity of ToxCast Compounds Using Multi-well Microelectrode Array Recordings in Primary Cortical Neurons P Valdivia1, M Martin2, WR LeFew3, D Hall3, J Ross1, K Houck2 and TJ Shafer3 1Axion Biosystems, Atlanta GA and 2NCCT, 3ISTD, NHEERL, ORD, US EPA, RT...

  16. Curcumin protects microglia and primary rat cortical neurons against HIV-1 gp120-mediated inflammation and apoptosis.

    Luyan Guo

    Full Text Available Curcumin is a molecule found in turmeric root that has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and anti-tumor properties and has been widely used as both an herbal drug and a food additive to treat or prevent neurodegenerative diseases. To explore whether curcumin is able to ameliorate HIV-1-associated neurotoxicity, we treated a murine microglial cell line (N9 and primary rat cortical neurons with curcumin in the presence or absence of neurotoxic HIV-1 gp120 (V3 loop protein. We found that HIV-1 gp120 profoundly induced N9 cells to produce reactive oxygen species (ROS, tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α and monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1. HIV-1 gp120 also induced apoptosis of primary rat cortical neurons. Curcumin exerted a powerful inhibitory effect against HIV-1 gp120-induced neuronal damage, reducing the production of ROS, TNF-α and MCP-1 by N9 cells and inhibiting apoptosis of primary rat cortical neurons. Curcumin may exert its biological activities through inhibition of the delayed rectification and transient outward potassium (K(+ current, as curcumin effectively reduced HIV-1 gp120-mediated elevation of the delayed rectification and transient outward K(+ channel current in neurons. We conclude that HIV-1 gp120 increases ROS, TNF-α and MCP-1 production in microglia, and induces cortical neuron apoptosis by affecting the delayed rectification and transient outward K(+ channel current. Curcumin reduces production of ROS and inflammatory mediators in HIV-1-gp120-stimulated microglia, and protects cortical neurons against HIV-1-mediated apoptosis, most likely through inhibition of HIV-1 gp120-induced elevation of the delayed rectification and transient outward K(+ current.

  17. Green Tea Polyphenols Attenuated Glutamate Excitotoxicity via Antioxidative and Antiapoptotic Pathway in the Primary Cultured Cortical Neurons.

    Cong, Lin; Cao, Chang; Cheng, Yong; Qin, Xiao-Yan


    Green tea polyphenols are a natural product which has antioxidative and antiapoptotic effects. It has been shown that glutamate excitotoxicity induced oxidative stress is linked to neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. In this study we explored the neuroprotective effect of green teen polyphenols against glutamate excitotoxicity in the primary cultured cortical neurons. We found that green tea polyphenols protected against glutamate induced neurotoxicity in the cortical neurons as measured by MTT and TUNEL assays. Green tea polyphenols were then showed to inhibit the glutamate induced ROS release and SOD activity reduction in the neurons. Furthermore, our results demonstrated that green tea polyphenols restored the dysfunction of mitochondrial pro- or antiapoptotic proteins Bax, Bcl-2, and caspase-3 caused by glutamate. Interestingly, the neuroprotective effect of green tea polyphenols was abrogated when the neurons were incubated with siBcl-2. Taken together, these results demonstrated that green tea polyphenols protected against glutamate excitotoxicity through antioxidative and antiapoptotic pathways.

  18. Expression of exogenous LIN28 contributes to proliferation and survival of mouse primary cortical neurons in vitro.

    Bhuiyan, M I H; Lee, J-H; Kim, S Y; Cho, K-O


    LIN28, an RNA-binding protein, is known to be involved in the regulation of many cellular processes, such as embryonic stem cell proliferation, cell fate succession, developmental timing, and oncogenesis. In this study, we investigated the effect of constitutively expressing exogenous LIN28 on neuronal cell proliferation and viability in vitro. Plasmids containing LIN28-green fluorescent protein (GFP) or GFP were introduced into the embryonic mouse brains at E14.5 by in utero electroporation. Two days after electroporation, embryonic cortices were harvested and cultured. It was found that transfected cells stably overexpressed LIN28 in vitro. Viability curve from live cell imaging showed that the number of GFP-expressing cells decreased over time in line with naive primary cortical neurons. In contrast, the number of LIN28-GFP-overexpressing neurons initially increased and remained high at later time-points in culture than GFP-expressing cells. Double immunofluorescence showed that at an early time in culture, the number of Ki-67/GFP double-positive cells was higher in the LIN28-GFP group than that of controls. Moreover, there were significantly lower numbers of condensed nuclei/GFP- and cleaved caspase-3/GFP-positive cells in the LIN28-GFP groups compared to control GFP. Furthermore, it was confirmed that the LIN28-GFP-expressing cells at days in vitro (DIV)13 were neuronal nuclei (NeuN)-positive mature neurons. Finally, the expression of insulin-like growth factor 2 (IGF-2) was induced in LIN28-expressing primary cortical neurons, which was not detected in controls. Taken together, our results indicate that the expression of exogenous LIN28 can promote the proliferation of neural progenitor cells and exert prosurvival effect on primary cortical neurons by inhibiting caspase-dependent apoptosis, possibly via upregulation of IGF-2. Copyright © 2013 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Ethanol-induced disruption of Golgi apparatus morphology, primary neurite number and cellular orientation in developing cortical neurons.

    Powrozek, Teresa A; Olson, Eric C


    Prenatal ethanol exposure disrupts cortical neurite initiation and outgrowth, but prior studies have reported both ethanol-dependent growth promotion and inhibition. To resolve this ambiguity and better approximate in vivo conditions, we quantitatively analyzed neuronal morphology using a new, whole hemisphere explant model. In this model, Layer 6 (L6) cortical neurons migrate, laminate and extend neurites in an organotypic fashion. To selectively label L6 neurons, we performed ex utero electroporation of a GFP expression construct at embryonic day 13 and allowed the explants to develop for 2 days in vitro. Explants were exposed to (400 mg/dL) ethanol for either 4 or 24 h prior to fixation. Complete 3-D reconstructions were made of >80 GFP-positive neurons in each experimental condition. Acute responses to ethanol exposure included compaction of the Golgi apparatus accompanied by elaboration of supernumerary primary apical neurites, as well as a modest (∼15%) increase in higher order apical neurite length. With longer exposure time, ethanol exposure leads to a consistent, significant disorientation of the cell (cell body, primary apical neurite, and Golgi) with respect to the pial surface. The effects on cellular orientation were accompanied by decreased expression of cytoskeletal elements, microtubule-associated protein 2 and F-actin. These findings indicate that upon exposure to ethanol, developing L6 neurons manifest disruptions in Golgi apparatus and cytoskeletal elements which may in turn trigger selective and significant perturbations to primary neurite formation and neuronal polarity.

  20. Toxicity evaluation of new agricultural fungicides in primary cultured cortical neurons.

    Regueiro, Jorge; Olguín, Nair; Simal-Gándara, Jesús; Suñol, Cristina


    Fungicides are crucial for food protection as well as for the production of crops of suitable quality and quantity to provide a viable economic return. Like other pesticides, fungicides are widely sprayed on agricultural land, especially in wine-growing areas, from where they can move-off after application. Furthermore, residues of these agrochemicals can remain on crops after harvest and even after some food processing operations, being a major exposure pathway. Although a relatively low toxicity has been claimed for this kind of compounds, information about their neurotoxicity is still scarce. In the present study, nine fungicides recently approved for agricultural uses in the EU - ametoctradin, boscalid, cyazofamid, dimethomorph, fenhexamid, kresoxim-methyl, mepanipyrim, metrafenone and pyraclostrobin - have been evaluated for their toxicity in primary cultured mouse cortical neurons. Exposure to 0.1-100µM for 7 days in vitro resulted in a dose-dependent toxicity in the MTT cell viability assay. Strobilurin fungicides kresoxim-methyl (KR) and pyraclostrobin (PY) were the most neurotoxic compounds (lethal concentration 50 were in the low micromolar and nanomolar levels, respectively) causing a rapid raise in intracellular calcium [Ca(2+)]i and strong depolarization of mitochondrial membrane potential. KR- and PY-induced cell death was reversed by the calcium channels blockers MK-801 and verapamil, suggesting that calcium entry through NMDA receptors and voltage-operated calcium channels are involved in KR- and PY-induced neurotoxicity. These results highlight the need for further evaluation of their neurotoxic effects in vivo.

  1. Crambescidin 816 induces calcium influx though glutamate receptors in primary cultures of cortical neurons

    Víctor Martín Vázquez


    In summary, our data suggest that the cytotoxic effect of 10 μM Cramb816 in cortical neurons may be related to an increase in the cytosolic calcium concentration elicited by the toxin, which is shown to be mediated by glutamate receptor activation. Further studies analyzing the effect of glutamate receptor blockers on the cytotoxic effect of Cramb816 are needed to confirm this hypothesis.

  2. Green Tea Polyphenols Attenuated Glutamate Excitotoxicity via Antioxidative and Antiapoptotic Pathway in the Primary Cultured Cortical Neurons

    Lin Cong; Chang Cao; Yong Cheng; Xiao-Yan Qin


    Green tea polyphenols are a natural product which has antioxidative and antiapoptotic effects. It has been shown that glutamate excitotoxicity induced oxidative stress is linked to neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. In this study we explored the neuroprotective effect of green teen polyphenols against glutamate excitotoxicity in the primary cultured cortical neurons. We found that green tea polyphenols protected against glutamate induced neurotox...

  3. Effect of HDAC inhibitors on neuroprotection and neurite outgrowth in primary rat cortical neurons following ischemic insult.

    Hasan, Mohammad Rakibul; Kim, Ji-Hye; Kim, Youn Jung; Kwon, Kyoung Ja; Shin, Chan Young; Kim, Hahn Young; Han, Seol-Heui; Choi, Dong-Hee; Lee, Jongmin


    Histone deacetylase inhibitors (HDACi)-valproic acid (VPA) and trichostatin A (TSA) promote neurogenesis, neurite outgrowth, synaptic plasticity and neuroprotection. In this study, we investigated whether VPA and TSA promote post-ischemic neuroprotection and neuronal restoration in rat primary cortical neurons. On 6 days in vitro (DIV), cortical neurons were exposed to oxygen-glucose deprivation for 90 min. Cells were returned to normoxic conditions and cultured for 1, 3, or 7 days with or without VPA and TSA. Control cells were cultured in normoxic conditions only. On 7, 9, and 13 DIV, cells were measured neurite outgrowth using the Axiovision program and stained with Tunel staining kit. Microtubule associated protein-2 immunostaining and tunel staining showed significant recovery of neurite outgrowth and post-ischemic neuronal death by VPA or TSA treatment. We also determined levels of acetylated histone H3, PSD95, GAP 43 and synaptophysin. Significant increases in all three synaptic markers and acetylated histone H3 were observed relative to non-treated cells. Post-ischemic HDACi treatment also significantly raised levels of brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) expression and secreted BDNF. Enhanced BDNF expression by HDACi treatment might have been involved in the post-ischemic neuroprotection and neuronal restorative effects. Our findings suggest that both VPA and TSA treatment during reoxygenation after ischemia may help post-ischemic neuroprotection and neuronal regeneration via increased BDNF expression and activation.

  4. Estimation of the effective orientation of the SHG source in primary cortical neurons

    Psilodimitrakopoulos, Sotiris; Petegnief, Valérie; Soria, Guadalupe; Amat-Roldan, Ivan; Artigas, David; Planas, Anna M; Loza-Álvarez, Pablo


    In this paper we provide, for the first time to our knowledge, the effective orientation of the SHG source in cultured cortical neuronal processes in vitro. This is done by the use of the polarization sensitive second harmonic generation (PSHG) imaging microscopy technique. By performing a pixel-level resolution analysis we found that the SHG dipole source has a distribution of angles centered at θe =33.96°, with a bandwidth of ∆θe = 12.85°. This orientation can be related with the molecular...

  5. Green Tea Polyphenols Attenuated Glutamate Excitotoxicity via Antioxidative and Antiapoptotic Pathway in the Primary Cultured Cortical Neurons

    Lin Cong


    Full Text Available Green tea polyphenols are a natural product which has antioxidative and antiapoptotic effects. It has been shown that glutamate excitotoxicity induced oxidative stress is linked to neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. In this study we explored the neuroprotective effect of green teen polyphenols against glutamate excitotoxicity in the primary cultured cortical neurons. We found that green tea polyphenols protected against glutamate induced neurotoxicity in the cortical neurons as measured by MTT and TUNEL assays. Green tea polyphenols were then showed to inhibit the glutamate induced ROS release and SOD activity reduction in the neurons. Furthermore, our results demonstrated that green tea polyphenols restored the dysfunction of mitochondrial pro- or antiapoptotic proteins Bax, Bcl-2, and caspase-3 caused by glutamate. Interestingly, the neuroprotective effect of green tea polyphenols was abrogated when the neurons were incubated with siBcl-2. Taken together, these results demonstrated that green tea polyphenols protected against glutamate excitotoxicity through antioxidative and antiapoptotic pathways.

  6. The Effect of Noscapine on Oxygen-Glucose Deprivation on Primary Murine Cortical Neurons in High Glucose Condition.

    Vahabzadeh, Gelareh; Ebrahimi, Soltan-Ahmed; Rahbar-Roshandel, Nahid; Mahmoudian, Massoud


    In the present work we set out to investigate the neuroprotective effects of noscapine (0.5-2 µM) in presence of D-glucose on primary murine foetal cortical neurons after oxygen-glucose deprivation/24 h. recovery. Cell viability, nitric oxide production and intracellular calcium ((ca(2+))i) levels were evaluated by MTT assay, the modified Griess method and Fura-2 respectively. 25 and 100 mM D-glucose could, in a concentration dependent manner, improve cell viability and decrease NO production and (ca(2+))i level in neuronal cells after ischemic insult. Moreover, pre-incubation of cells with noscapine, noticeably enhanced protective effects of 25 and 100 mM D-glucose compared to similar conditions without noscapine pre-treatment. In fact, noscapine attenuated NO production in a dose-dependent fashion, after 30 minutes (min) OGD, during high-glucose (HG) condition in cortical neurons. Pretreatment with 2 μM noscapine and 25 or 100 mM D-glucose, was shown to decrease the rise in (ca(2+))i induced by Sodium azide/glucose deprivation (chemical OGD) model. These effects were more pronounced than that of 25 or 100 mM D-glucose alone. The present study demonstrated that the neuroprotective effects of HG before an ischemic insult were augmented by pre-treatment with noscapine. Our results also suggested that the neuroprotection offered by both HG and noscapine involve attenuation of NO production and (ca(2+))i levels stimulated by the experimental ischemia in cortical neurons.

  7. Geniposide Protects Primary Cortical Neurons against Oligomeric Aβ1-42-Induced Neurotoxicity through a Mitochondrial Pathway.

    Chunhui Zhao

    Full Text Available Mitochondrial dysfunction plays a key role in the progression of Alzheimer's disease (AD. The accumulation of amyloid-beta peptide (Aβ in the brains of AD patients is thought to be closely related to neuronal mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative stress. Therefore, protecting mitochondria from Aβ-induced neurotoxicity is an effective strategy for AD therapeutics. In a previous study, we found that geniposide, a pharmacologically active compound purified from gardenia fruit, has protective effects on oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction in AD transgenic mouse models. However, whether geniposide has a protective effect on Aβ-induced neuronal dysfunction remains unknown. In the present study, we demonstrate that geniposide protects cultured primary cortical neurons from Aβ-mediated mitochondrial dysfunction by recovering ATP generation, mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP, and cytochrome c oxidase (CcO and caspase 3/9 activity; by reducing ROS production and cytochrome c leakage; as well as by inhibiting apoptosis. These findings suggest that geniposide may attenuate Aβ-induced neuronal injury by inhibiting mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative stress.

  8. c-Jun N-terminal kinase regulates mitochondrial bioenergetics by modulating pyruvate dehydrogenase activity in primary cortical neurons.

    Zhou, Qiongqiong; Lam, Philip Y; Han, Derick; Cadenas, Enrique


    This study examines the role of c-jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) in mitochondrial signaling and bioenergetics in primary cortical neurons and isolated rat brain mitochondria. Exposure of neurons to either anisomycin (an activator of JNK/p38 mitogen-activated protein kinases) or H2O2 resulted in activation (phosphorylation) of JNK (mostly p46(JNK1)) and its translocation to mitochondria. Experiments with mitochondria isolated from either rat brain or primary cortical neurons and incubated with proteinase K revealed that phosphorylated JNK was associated with the outer mitochondrial membrane; this association resulted in the phosphorylation of the E(1alpha) subunit of pyruvate dehydrogenase, a key enzyme that catalyzes the oxidative decarboxylation of pyruvate and that links two major metabolic pathways: glycolysis and the tricarboxylic acid cycle. JNK-mediated phosphorylation of pyruvate dehydrogenase was not observed in experiments carried out with mitoplasts, thus suggesting the requirement of intact, functional mitochondria for this effect. JNK-mediated phosphorylation of pyruvate dehydrogenase was associated with a decline in its activity and, consequently, a shift to anaerobic pyruvate metabolism: the latter was confirmed by increased accumulation of lactic acid and decreased overall energy production (ATP levels). Pyruvate dehydrogenase appears to be a specific phosphorylation target for JNK, for other kinases, such as protein kinase A and protein kinase C did not elicit pyruvate dehydrogenase phosphorylation and did not decrease the activity of the complex. These results suggest that JNK mediates a signaling pathway that regulates metabolic functions in mitochondria as part of a network that coordinates cytosolic and mitochondrial processes relevant for cell function.

  9. Neuroprotective effects of salvianolic acid B against oxygen-glucose deprivation/reperfusion damage in primary rat cortical neurons

    WANG Yun; JIANG Yu-feng; HUANG Qi-fu; GE Gui-ling; CUI Wei


    Background Cerebral ischemia-reperfusion injury is the main reason for the loss of neurons in the ischemic cerebrovascular disease. Therefore, to deeply understand its pathogenesis and find a new target is the key issue to be solved. This research aimed to investigate the neuroprotective effects of salvianolic acid B (SalB) against oxygen-glucose deprivation/reperfusion (OGD/RP) damage in primary rat cortical neurons.Methods The primary cultures of neonatal Wister rats were randomly divided into the control group, the OGD/RP group and the SalB-treatment group (10 mg/L). The cell model was established by depriving of oxygen and glucose for 3 hours and reperfusion for 3 hours and 24 hours, respectively. The neuron viability was determined by MTT assay. The level of cellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) was detected by fluorescent labeling method and spin trapping technique respectively. The activities of neuronal Mn-superoxide dismutase (Mn-SOD), catalase (CAT) and glutathione peroxidase (GSH-PX) were assayed by chromatometry. The mitochondria membrane potential (△ψm) was quantitatively analyzed by flow cytometry. The release rate of cytochrome c was detected by Western blotting. The neuronal ultrastructure was observed by transmission electron microscopy. Statistical significance was evaluated by analysis of variance (ANOVA)followed by Student-Newman-Keuls test.Results OGD/RP increased the level of cellular ROS, but decreased the cell viability and the activities of Mn-SOD, CAT and GSH-PX; SalB treatment significantly reduced the level of ROS (P <0.05); and enhanced the cell viability (P <0.05)and the activities of these antioxidases (P <0.05). Additionally, OGD/RP induced the fluorescence value of △ψm to diminish and the release rate of cytochrome c to rise notably; SalB markedly elevated the level of △ψm (P <0.01) and depressed the release rate of cytochrome c (P <0.05); it also ameliorated the neuronal morphological injury.Conclusion The

  10. Synergy by secretory phospholipase A2 and glutamate on inducing cell death and sustained arachidonic acid metabolic changes in primary cortical neuronal cultures

    Kolko, M; DeCoster, M A; de Turco, E B


    Secretory and cytosolic phospholipases A2 (sPLA2 and cPLA2) may contribute to the release of arachidonic acid and other bioactive lipids, which are modulators of synaptic function. In primary cortical neuron cultures, neurotoxic cell death and [3H]arachidonate metabolism was studied after adding ...

  11. [Neuroprotective effects of the effective components group of xiaoshuantongluo against oxygen-glucose deprivation in primary cultured rat cortical neurons].

    Xie, Xin-Mei; Pang, Xiao-Bin; Zhao, Yan; Wang, Bao-Quan; Chen, Ruo-Yun; Du, Guan-Hua


    This study is to investigate the effect of the effective components group of Xiaoshuantongluo (XECG) on neuronal injury induced by oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) in primary cortical cultures isolated from SD rat cortex at day 3 and the possible mechanism. Cells were divided into control group, OGD model group and XECG group (1, 3 and 10 mg x L(-1)). The cell viability was assessed with MTT assay and the LDH release rate was measured by enzyme label kit. The cell apoptosis was analyzed using Hoechst staining. RT-PCR was applied to detect the mRNA levels of JAK2 and STAT3. Western blotting was used to detect the expressions of Bcl-2, Bax, p-JAK2 and p-STAT3 proteins. Results showed that XECG resulted in an obvious resistance to oxygen-glucose deprivation-induced cell apoptosis and decrement of cell viability, decrease the cell LDH release rate. XECG could adjust the expression of Bcl-2 and Bax proteins and increase Bcl-2/Bax ratio, up-regulate the expression of p-JAK2 and p-STAT3. In conclusion, XECG could protect against the neuronal injury cells exposed to OGD, which may be relevant to the promotion of JAK2/STAT3 signaling pathway, and impact the expression of Bax and Bcl-2.

  12. Expression of Alzheimer-type Neurofibrillary Epitopes in Primary Rat Cortical Neurons Following Infection with Enterococcus faecalis

    Robert eUnderly


    Full Text Available The neurofibrillary tau pathology and amyloid deposits seen in Alzheimer's disease (AD also have been seen in bacteria-infected brains. However, few studies have examined the role of these bacteria in the generation of tau pathology. One suggested link between infection and Alzheimer’s disease is edentulism, the complete loss of teeth. Edentulism can result from chronic periodontal disease due to infection by Enterococcus faecalis. The current study assessed the ability to generate early Alzheimer-like neurofibrillary epitopes in primary rat cortical neurons through bacterial infection by Enterococcus faecalis. Seven-day old cultured neurons were infected with Enterococcus faecalis for 24- and 48-hours. An upward molecular weight shift in tau by western blotting and increased appearance of tau reactivity in cell bodies and degenerating neurites was found in the 48-hour infection group for the antibody CP13 (phospho-Serine-202. A substantial increase in reactivity of Alz-50 was seen at 24- and 48- hours after infection. Furthermore, extensive MAP2 reactivity also was seen at 24- and 48-hours post-infection. Our preliminary findings suggest a potential link between Enterococcus faecalis infection and intracellular changes that may help facilitate early AD-like neurofibrillary pathology.

  13. Expression of Alzheimer-Type Neurofibrillary Epitopes in Primary Rat Cortical Neurons Following Infection with Enterococcus faecalis.

    Underly, Robert; Song, Mee-Sook; Dunbar, Gary L; Weaver, Charles L


    The neurofibrillary tau pathology and amyloid deposits seen in Alzheimer's disease (AD) also have been seen in bacteria-infected brains. However, few studies have examined the role of these bacteria in the generation of tau pathology. One suggested link between infection and AD is edentulism, the complete loss of teeth. Edentulism can result from chronic periodontal disease due to infection by Enterococcus faecalis. The current study assessed the ability to generate early Alzheimer-like neurofibrillary epitopes in primary rat cortical neurons through bacterial infection by E. faecalis. Seven-day old cultured neurons were infected with E. faecalis for 24 and 48 h. An upward molecular weight shift in tau by Western blotting (WB) and increased appearance of tau reactivity in cell bodies and degenerating neurites was found in the 48 h infection group for the antibody CP13 (phospho-Serine 202). A substantial increase in reactivity of Alz-50 was seen at 24 and 48 h after infection. Furthermore, extensive microtubule-associated protein 2 (MAP2) reactivity also was seen at 24 and 48 h post-infection. Our preliminary findings suggest a potential link between E. faecalis infection and intracellular changes that may help facilitate early AD-like neurofibrillary pathology. HighlightsEnterococcus faecalis used in the generation of AD neurofibrillary epitopes in rat.Infection increases Alz-50, phospho-Serine 202 tau, and MAP2 expression.Infection by Enterococcus may play a role in early Alzheimer neurofibrillary changes.

  14. Chronic Alcohol Exposure Decreases 53BP1 Protein Levels Leading to a Defective DNA Repair in Cultured Primary Cortical Neurons.

    Romero, Ana M; Palanca, Ana; Ruiz-Soto, Maria; Llorca, Javier; Marín, María P; Renau-Piqueras, Jaime; Berciano, Maria T; Lafarga, Miguel


    Chronic alcohol consumption may cause neurodevelopmental and neurodegenerative disorders. Alcohol neurotoxicity is associated with the production of acetaldehyde and reactive oxygen species that induce oxidative DNA damage. However, the molecular mechanisms by which ethanol disturbs the DNA damage response (DDR), resulting in a defective DNA repair, remain unknown. Here, we have used cultured primary cortical neurons exposed to 50 or 100 mM ethanol for 7 days to analyze the ethanol-induced DDR. Ethanol exposure produced a dose-dependent generation of double strand breaks and the formation of DNA damage foci immunoreactive for the histone γH2AX, a DNA damage marker, and for the ubiquitylated H2A, which is involved in chromatin remodeling at DNA damage sites. Importantly, these DNA damage foci failed to recruit the protein 53BP1, a crucial DNA repair factor. This effect was associated with a drop in 53BP1 mRNA and protein levels and with an inhibition of global transcription. Moreover, ethanol-exposed neurons treated with ionizing radiation (2 Gy) also failed to recruit 53BP1 at DNA damage foci and exhibited a greater vulnerability to DNA lesions than irradiated control neurons. Our results support that defective DNA repair, mediated by the deficient expression and recruitment of 53BP1 to DNA damage sites, represents a novel mechanism involved in ethanol neurotoxicity. The design of therapeutic strategies that increase or stabilize 53BP1 levels might potentially promote DNA repair and partially compensate alcohol neurotoxicity.

  15. 2,3,7,8-Tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) induces microglial nitric oxide production and subsequent rat primary cortical neuron apoptosis through p38/JNK MAPK pathway.

    Li, Yuanye; Chen, Gang; Zhao, Jianya; Nie, Xiaoke; Wan, Chunhua; Liu, Jiao; Duan, Zhiqing; Xu, Guangfei


    It has been widely accepted that microglia, which are the innate immune cells in the brain, upon activation can cause neuronal damage. In the present study, we investigated the role of 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) in regulating microglial nitric oxide production and its role in causing neuronal damage. The study revealed that TCDD stimulates the expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) as well as the production of nitric oxide (NO) in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Further, a rapid activation of p38 and JNK MAPKs was found in HAPI microglia following TCDD treatment. Blockage of p38 and JNK kinases with their specific inhibitors, SB202190 and SP600125, significantly reduced TCDD-induced iNOS expression and NO production. In addition, it was demonstrated through treating rat primary cortical neurons with media conditioned with TCDD treated microglia that microglial iNOS activation mediates neuronal apoptosis. Lastly, it was also found that p38 and JNK MAPK inhibitors could attenuate the apoptosis of rat cortical neurons upon exposure to medium conditioned by TCDD-treated HAPI microglial cells. Based on these observations, we highlight that the p38/JNK MAPK pathways play an important role in TCDD-induced iNOS activation in rat HAPI microglia and in the subsequent induction of apoptosis in primary cortical neurons.

  16. Effect of 710 nm visible light irradiation on neurite outgrowth in primary rat cortical neurons following ischemic insult

    Choi, Dong-Hee [Center for Neuroscience Research, SMART Institute of Advanced Biomedical Science, Konkuk University, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Department of Medical Science, Konkuk University School of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Lee, Kyoung-Hee; Kim, Ji-Hye; Kim, Moon Young [Center for Neuroscience Research, SMART Institute of Advanced Biomedical Science, Konkuk University, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Lim, Jeong Hoon [Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Konkuk University School of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Rehabilitation Medicine, Division of Neurology, Department of Medicine, National University Hospital, National University Health System (Singapore); Lee, Jongmin, E-mail: [Center for Neuroscience Research, SMART Institute of Advanced Biomedical Science, Konkuk University, Seoul (Korea, Republic of); Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, Konkuk University School of Medicine, Seoul (Korea, Republic of)


    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer 710 nm wavelength light (LED) has a protective effect in the stroke animal model. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer We determined the effects of LED irradiation in vitro stroke model. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer LED treatment promotes the neurite outgrowth through MAPK activation. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer The level of synaptic markers significantly increased with LED treatment. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer LED treatment protects cell death in the in vitro stroke model. -- Abstract: Objective: We previously reported that 710 nm Light-emitting Diode (LED) has a protective effect through cellular immunity activation in the stroke animal model. However, whether LED directly protects neurons suffering from neurodegeneration was entirely unknown. Therefore, we sought to determine the effects of 710 nm visible light irradiation on neuronal protection and neuronal outgrowth in an in vitro stroke model. Materials and methods: Primary cultured rat cortical neurons were exposed to oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) and reoxygenation and normal conditions. An LED array with a peak wavelength of 710 nm was placed beneath the covered culture dishes with the room light turned off and were irradiated accordingly. LED treatments (4 min at 4 J/cm{sup 2} and 50 mW/cm{sup 2}) were given once to four times within 8 h at 2 h intervals for 7 days. Mean neurite density, mean neurite diameter, and total fiber length were also measured after microtubule associated protein 2 (MAP2) immunostaining using the Axio Vision program. Synaptic marker expression and MAPK activation were confirmed by Western blotting. Results: Images captured after MAP2 immunocytochemistry showed significant (p < 0.05) enhancement of post-ischemic neurite outgrowth with LED treatment once and twice a day. MAPK activation was enhanced by LED treatment in both OGD-exposed and normal cells. The levels of synaptic markers such as PSD 95, GAP 43, and synaptophysin significantly

  17. Neuroprotective and Anti-Apoptotic Effects of CSP-1103 in Primary Cortical Neurons Exposed to Oxygen and Glucose Deprivation

    Porrini, Vanessa; Sarnico, Ilenia; Benarese, Marina; Branca, Caterina; Mota, Mariana; Lanzillotta, Annamaria; Bellucci, Arianna; Parrella, Edoardo; Faggi, Lara; Spano, Pierfranco; Imbimbo, Bruno Pietro; Pizzi, Marina


    CSP-1103 (formerly CHF5074) has been shown to reverse memory impairment and reduce amyloid plaque as well as inflammatory microglia activation in preclinical models of Alzheimer’s disease. Moreover, it was found to improve cognition and reduce brain inflammation in patients with mild cognitive impairment. Recent evidence suggests that CSP-1103 acts through a single molecular target, the amyloid precursor protein intracellular domain (AICD), a transcriptional regulator implicated in inflammation and apoptosis. We here tested the possible anti-apoptotic and neuroprotective activity of CSP-1103 in a cell-based model of post-ischemic injury, wherein the primary mouse cortical neurons were exposed to oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD). When added after OGD, CSP-1103 prevented the apoptosis cascade by reducing cytochrome c release and caspase-3 activation and the secondary necrosis. Additionally, CSP-1103 limited earlier activation of p38 and nuclear factor κB (NF-κB) pathways. These results demonstrate that CSP-1103 is neuroprotective in a model of post-ischemic brain injury and provide further mechanistic insights as regards its ability to reduce apoptosis and potential production of pro-inflammatory cytokines. In conclusion, these findings suggest a potential use of CSP-1103 for the treatment of brain ischemia. PMID:28106772

  18. β-Secretase inhibitor increases amyloid-β precursor protein level in rat brain cortical primary neurons induced by okadaic acid

    YU Chun-Jiang; WANG Wei-zhi; LIU Wei


    Background Senile plaques and neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs) represent two of the major histopathological hallmarks of Alzheimer's disease (AD). The plaques are primarily composed of aggregated amyloid β (Aβ) peptides. The processing of amyloid-β precursor protein (AβPP) in okadaic acid (OA)-induced tau phosphorylation primary neurons was studied.Methods Primary cultures of rat brain cortical neurons were treated with OA and β-secretase inhibitor. Neurons' viability was measured. AβPP processing was examined by immunocytochemistry and Western blotting with specific antibodies against the AβPP-N-terminus (NT) and AβPP-C-terminus (CT).Results Ten nrnol/L OA had a time-dependent suppression effect on primary neurons' viability. The suppression effect was alleviated markedly by pretreatment with β-secretase inhibitor. After OA treatment, both AβPP and β-C-terminal fragment (βCTF) were significantly increased in neurons. AβPP level was increased further in neurons pretreated with β-secretase inhibitor.Conclusions In OA-induced tau phosphorylation cell model, inhibition of β-secretase may protect neurons from death induced by OA. Because of increased accumulation of AβPP in neurons after OA treatment, more AβPP turns to be cleaved by β-secretase, producing neurotoxic βCTF. As a potential effective therapeutic target, β-secretase is worth investigating further.

  19. Small-molecule inhibitors at the PSD-95/nNOS interface protect against glutamate-induced neuronal atrophy in primary cortical neurons.

    Doucet, M V; O'Toole, E; Connor, T; Harkin, A


    Glutamate and nitric oxide (NO) are important regulators of dendrite and axon development in the central nervous system. Excess glutamatergic stimulation is a feature of many pathological conditions and manifests in neuronal atrophy and shrinkage with eventual neurodegeneration and cell death. Here we demonstrate that treatment of cultured primary cortical rat neurons for 24h with glutamate (500μM) or N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) (100-500μM) combined with glycine suppresses neurite outgrowth. A similar reduction of neurite outgrowth was observed with the NO precursor l-arginine and NO donor sodium nitroprusside (SNP) (100 and 300μM). The NMDA-receptor (NMDA-R) antagonists ketamine and MK-801 (10nM) counteracted the NMDA/glycine-induced reduction in neurite outgrowth and the neuronal NO synthase (nNOS) inhibitor 1-[2-(trifluoromethyl)phenyl] imidazole (TRIM) (100nM) counteracted both the NMDA/glycine and l-arginine-induced decreases in neurite outgrowth. Furthermore, targeting soluble guanylate cyclase (sGC), a downstream target of NO, with the sGC inhibitor 1H-[1,2,4]oxadiazolo[4,3-a]quinoxalin-1-one (ODQ) (10μM) also protected against l-arginine-induced decreases in neurite outgrowth. Since the NMDA-R is functionally coupled to nNOS via the postsynaptic protein 95kDa (PSD-95), inhibitors of the PSD-95/nNOS interaction were tested for their ability to protect against glutamate-induced suppression in neurite outgrowth. Treatment with the small-molecule inhibitors of the PSD-95/nNOS interface 2-((1H-benzo[d] [1,2,3]triazol-5-ylamino) methyl)-4,6-dichlorophenol (IC87201) (10 and 100nM) and 4-(3,5-dichloro-2-hydroxy-benzylamino)-2-hydroxybenzoic acid (ZL-006) (10 and 100nM) attenuated NMDA/glycine-induced decreases in neurite outgrowth. These data support the hypothesis that targeting the NMDA-R/PSD-95/nNOS interaction downstream of NMDA-R promotes neurotrophic effects by preventing neurite shrinkage in response to excess glutamatergic stimulation. The PSD-95/n

  20. The origin of cortical neurons

    J.G. Parnavelas


    Full Text Available Neurons of the mammalian cerebral cortex comprise two broad classes: pyramidal neurons, which project to distant targets, and the inhibitory nonpyramidal cells, the cortical interneurons. Pyramidal neurons are generated in the germinal ventricular zone, which lines the lateral ventricles, and migrate along the processes of radial glial cells to their positions in the developing cortex in an `inside-out' sequence. The GABA-containing nonpyramidal cells originate for the most part in the ganglionic eminence, the primordium of the basal ganglia in the ventral telencephalon. These cells follow tangential migratory routes to enter the cortex and are in close association with the corticofugal axonal system. Once they enter the cortex, they move towards the ventricular zone, possibly to obtain positional information, before they migrate radially in the direction of the pial surface to take up their positions in the developing cortex. The mechanisms that guide interneurons throughout these long and complex migratory routes are currently under investigation.

  1. Overexpressed neuroglobin raises threshold for nitric oxide-induced impairment of mitochondrial respiratory activities and stress signaling in primary cortical neurons.

    Singh, Shilpee; Zhuo, Ming; Gorgun, Falih M; Englander, Ella W


    Surges of nitric oxide compromise mitochondrial respiration primarily by competitive inhibition of oxygen binding to cytochrome c oxidase (complex IV) and are particularly injurious in neurons, which rely on oxidative phosphorylation for all their energy needs. Here, we show that transgenic overexpression of the neuronal globin protein, neuroglobin, helps diminish protein nitration, preserve mitochondrial function and sustain ATP content of primary cortical neurons challenged by extended nitric oxide exposure. Specifically, in transgenic neurons, elevated neuroglobin curtailed nitric oxide-induced alterations in mitochondrial oxygen consumption rates, including baseline oxygen consumption, consumption coupled with ATP synthesis, proton leak and spare respiratory capacity. Concomitantly, activation of genes involved in sensing and responding to oxidative/nitrosative stress, including the early-immediate c-Fos gene and the phase II antioxidant enzyme, heme oxygenase-1, was diminished in neuroglobin-overexpressing compared to wild-type neurons. Taken together, these differences reflect a lesser insult produced by similar concentrations of nitric oxide in neuroglobin-overexpressing compared to wild-type neurons, suggesting that abundant neuroglobin buffers nitric oxide and raises the threshold of nitric oxide-mediated injury in neurons.

  2. Linking Electrical Stimulation of Human Primary Visual Cortex, Size of Affected Cortical Area, Neuronal Responses, and Subjective Experience.

    Winawer, Jonathan; Parvizi, Josef


    Electrical brain stimulation (EBS) complements neural measurements by probing the causal relationship between brain and perception, cognition, and action. Many fundamental questions about EBS remain unanswered, including the spatial extent of cortex responsive to stimulation, and the relationship between the circuitry engaged by EBS and the types of neural responses elicited by sensory stimulation. Here, we measured neural responses and the effects of EBS in primary visual cortex in four patients implanted with intracranial electrodes. Using stimulation, behavior, and retinotopic mapping, we show the relationship between the size of affected cortical area and the magnitude of electrical charge. Furthermore, we show that the spatial location of electrically induced visual sensations is matched to the receptive field of the cortical site measured with broadband field potentials, and less so with event related potentials. Together, these findings broaden our knowledge about the mechanism of EBS and the neuromodulation of the human brain. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Isoflurane post-conditioning protects primary cultures of cortical neurons against oxygen and glucose deprivation injury via upregulation of Slit2/Robo1.

    Zhao, Xiao-Chun; Zhang, Li-Min; Li, Qiang; Tong, Dong-Yi; Fan, Long-Chang; An, Ping; Wu, Xiu-Ying; Chen, Wei-Min; Zhao, Ping; Wang, Jian


    Different mechanisms have been suggested to contribute to isoflurane-mediated neuroprotection. Previous studies have suggested that the protein Slit can abrogate neuronal death in mixed neuronal-glial cultures exposed to oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) and reperfusion (OGD/R). We hypothesized that isoflurane increases the expression of Slit and its receptor Robo when cortical neurons are exposed to OGD/R. To test this hypothesis, we exposed primary cortical neurons to OGD for 90 min and reperfusion for 24h and investigated how isoflurane post-conditioning affected cell survival and expression of Slit2 and receptors Robo1 and Robo4. Cell survival increased after administration of isoflurane, as assessed by the lactate dehydrogenase assay, trypan blue analysis, and propidium iodide staining. Western blot analysis showed that cleaved caspase-3 was increased after OGD/R(PSlit2 and Robo1, but not Robo4, were increased after OGD/R (PSlit2 and Robo1 expression. These findings provide a novel explanation for the pleiotropic effects of isoflurane that could benefit the central nervous system.

  4. Nrdp1 Increases Ischemia Induced Primary Rat Cerebral Cortical Neurons and Pheochromocytoma Cells Apoptosis Via Downregulation of HIF-1α Protein

    Yuan Zhang


    Full Text Available Neuregulin receptor degradation protein-1 (Nrdp1 is an E3 ubiquitin ligase that targets proteins for degradation and regulates cell growth, apoptosis and oxidative stress in various cell types. We have previously shown that Nrdp1 is implicated in ischemic cardiomyocyte death. In this study, we investigated the change of Nrdp1 expression in ischemic neurons and its role in ischemic neuronal injury. Primary rat cerebral cortical neurons and pheochromocytoma (PC12 cells were infected with adenoviral constructs expressing Nrdp1 gene or its siRNA before exposing to oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD treatment. Our data showed that Nrdp1 was upregulated in ischemic brain tissue 3 h after middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO and in OGD-treated neurons. Of note, Nrdp1 overexpression by Ad-Nrdp1 enhanced OGD-induced neuron apoptosis, while knockdown of Nrdp1 with siRNA attenuated this effect, implicating a role of Nrdp1 in ischemic neuron injury. Moreover, Nrdp1 upregulation is accompanied by increased protein ubiquitylation and decreased protein levels of ubiquitin-specific protease 8 (USP8 in OGD-treated neurons, which led to a suppressed interaction between USP8 and HIF-1α and subsequently a reduction in HIF-1α protein accumulation in neurons under OGD conditions. In conclusion, our data support an important role of Nrdp1 upregulation in ischemic neuronal death, and suppressing the interaction between USP8 and HIF-1α and consequently the hypoxic adaptive response of neurons may account for this detrimental effect.

  5. Estrogen stimulates release of secreted amyloid precursor protein from primary rat cortical neurons via protein kinase C pathway

    Sun ZHANG; Ying HUANG; Yi-chun ZHU; Tai YAO


    Aim: To investigate the mechanism of the action of estrogen, which stimulates the release of secreted amyloid precursor protein α (sAPPα) and decreases the gen eration of amyloid-β protein (Aβ), a dominant component in senile plaques in the brains of Alzheimer's disease patients. Methods: Experiments were carried out inprimary rat cortical neurons, and Western blot was used to detect sAPPα in aculture medium and the total amount of cellular amyloid precursor protein (APP) in neurons. Results: 17β-Estradiol (but not 17α-estradiol) and β-estradiol 6-(Ocarboxymethyl) oxime: BSA increased the secretion of sAPPα and this effect was blocked by protein kinase C (PKC) inhibitor calphostin C, but not by the classical estrogen receptor antagonist ICI 182,780. Meanwhile, 17β-estradiol did not alter the synthesis of cellular APP. Conclusion: The effect of 17β-estradiol on sAPPα secretion is likely mediated through the membrane binding sites, and needs molecular configuration specificity of the ligand. Furthermore, the action of the PKC dependent pathway might be involved in estrogen-induced sAPPα secretion.

  6. Mitogen-activated protein kinase signaling pathways promote low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 1-mediated internalization of beta-amyloid protein in primary cortical neurons.

    Yang, Wei-Na; Ma, Kai-Ge; Qian, Yi-Hua; Zhang, Jian-Shui; Feng, Gai-Feng; Shi, Li-Li; Zhang, Zhi-Chao; Liu, Zhao-Hui


    Mounting evidence suggests that the pathological hallmarks of Alzheimer's disease (AD) are caused by the intraneuronal accumulation of beta-amyloid protein (Aβ). Reuptake of extracellular Aβ is believed to contribute significantly to the intraneuronal Aβ pool in the early stages of AD. Published reports have claimed that the low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 1 (LRP1) mediates Aβ1-42 uptake and lysosomal trafficking in GT1-7 neuronal cells and mouse embryonic fibroblast non-neuronal cells. However, there is no direct evidence supporting the role of LRP1 in Aβ internalization in primary neurons. Our recent study indicated that p38 MAPK and ERK1/2 signaling pathways are involved in regulating α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7nAChR)-mediated Aβ1-42 uptake in SH-SY5Y cells. This study was designed to explore the regulation of MAPK signaling pathways on LRP1-mediated Aβ internalization in neurons. We found that extracellular Aβ1-42 oligomers could be internalized into endosomes/lysosomes and mitochondria in cortical neurons. Aβ1-42 and LRP1 were also found co-localized in neurons during Aβ1-42 internalization, and they could form Aβ1-42-LRP1 complex. Knockdown of LRP1 expression significantly decreased neuronal Aβ1-42 internalization. Finally, we identified that p38 MAPK and ERK1/2 signaling pathways regulated the internalization of Aβ1-42 via LRP1. Therefore, these results demonstrated that LRP1, p38 MAPK and ERK1/2 mediated the internalization of Aβ1-42 in neurons and provided evidence that blockade of LRP1 or inhibitions of MAPK signaling pathways might be a potential approach to lowering brain Aβ levels and served a potential therapeutic target for AD.

  7. Neuroprotective effects of a novel single compound 1-methoxyoctadecan-1-ol isolated from Uncaria sinensis in primary cortical neurons and a photothrombotic ischemia model.

    Ji Yeon Jang

    Full Text Available We identified a novel neuroprotective compound, 1-methoxyoctadecan-1-ol, from Uncaria sinensis (Oliv. Havil and investigated its effects and mechanisms in primary cortical neurons and in a photothrombotic ischemic model. In primary rat cortical neurons against glutamate-induced neurotoxicity, pretreatment with 1-methoxyoctadecan-1-ol resulted in significantly reduced neuronal death in a dose-dependent manner. In addition, treatment with 1-methoxyoctadecan-1-ol resulted in decreased neuronal apoptotic death, as assessed by nuclear morphological approaches. To clarify the neuroprotective mechanism of 1-methoxyoctadecan-1-ol, we explored the downstream signaling pathways of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR with calpain activation. Treatment with glutamate leads to early activation of NMDAR, which in turn leads to calpain-mediated cleavage of striatal-enriched protein tyrosine phosphatase (STEP and subsequent activation of p38 mitogen activated protein kinase (MAPK. However, pretreatment with 1-methoxyoctadecan-1-ol resulted in significantly attenuated activation of GluN2B-NMDAR and a decrease in calpain-mediated STEP cleavage, leading to subsequent attenuation of p38 MAPK activation. We confirmed the critical role of p38 MAPK in neuroprotective effects of 1-methoxyoctadecan-1-ol using specific inhibitor SB203580. In the photothrombotic ischemic injury in mice, treatment with 1-methoxyoctadecan-1-ol resulted in significantly reduced infarct volume, edema size, and improved neurological function. 1-methoxyoctadecan-1-ol effectively prevents cerebral ischemic damage through down-regulation of calpain-mediated STEP cleavage and activation of p38 MAPK. These results suggest that 1-methoxyoctadecan-1-ol showed neuroprotective effects through down-regulation of calpain-mediated STEP cleavage with activation of GluN2B-NMDAR, and subsequent alleviation of p38 MAPK activation. In addition, 1-methoxyoctadecan-1-ol might be a useful therapeutic agent for

  8. Sulforaphane protects primary cultures of cortical neurons against injury induced by oxygen-glucose deprivation/reoxygenation via antiapoptosis

    Xuemei Wu; Jing Zhao; Shanshan Yu; Yanlin Chen; Jingxian Wu; Yong Zhao


    Objective To determine whether sulforaphane (SFN) protects neurons against injury caused by oxygenglucose deprivation/reoxygenation (OGD/R) and,if so,to investigate the possible mechanisms.Methods Primary cultures of neurons were prepared from the cerebral cortex of 1-day-old Sprague-Dawley rats.On days 5-6 in vitro,the neurons were exposed to OGD for 1 h,followed by reoxygenation for 24 h.Cells were treated with 0,0.1,0.2,0.5,1,2.5,or 5 μmol/L SFN,with or without 10 μmol/L LY294002,a PI3K-specific inhibitor,during OGD/R (a total of 25 h).After 24-h reoxygenation,MTT was used to assess viability and injury was assessed by Hoechst 33258/propidium iodide (PI) staining;immunofluorescence staining and Western blot were performed to detect molecular events associated with apoptosis.Results The MTT assay showed that 1 μmol/L SFN significantly increased viability,and Hoechst 33258/PI staining showed that the numbers of injured neurons were reduced significantly in the SFN group.Furthermore,immunofluorescence staining and Westem blot showed that SFN increased Bcl-2 and decreased cleaved caspase-3 levels.Moreover,LY294002 inhibited the phosphorylated-Akt expression evoked by SFN,decreased Bcl-2 expression and increased cleaved caspase-3 expression.Conclusion SFN protects neurons against injury from OGD/R and this effect may be partly associated with an antiapoptosis pathway.

  9. Glutamate-induced apoptosis in primary cortical neurons is inhibited by equine estrogens via down-regulation of caspase-3 and prevention of mitochondrial cytochrome c release

    Zhang YueMei


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Apoptosis plays a key role in cell death observed in neurodegenerative diseases marked by a progressive loss of neurons as seen in Alzheimer's disease. Although the exact cause of apoptosis is not known, a number of factors such as free radicals, insufficient levels of nerve growth factors and excessive levels of glutamate have been implicated. We and others, have previously reported that in a stable HT22 neuronal cell line, glutamate induces apoptosis as indicated by DNA fragmentation and up- and down-regulation of Bax (pro-apoptotic, and Bcl-2 (anti-apoptotic genes respectively. Furthermore, these changes were reversed/inhibited by estrogens. Several lines of evidence also indicate that a family of cysteine proteases (caspases appear to play a critical role in neuronal apoptosis. The purpose of the present study is to determine in primary cultures of cortical cells, if glutamate-induced neuronal apoptosis and its inhibition by estrogens involve changes in caspase-3 protease and whether this process is mediated by Fas receptor and/or mitochondrial signal transduction pathways involving release of cytochrome c. Results In primary cultures of rat cortical cells, glutamate induced apoptosis that was associated with enhanced DNA fragmentation, morphological changes, and up-regulation of pro-caspase-3. Exposure of cortical cells to glutamate resulted in a time-dependent cell death and an increase in caspase-3 protein levels. Although the increase in caspase-3 levels was evident after 3 h, cell death was only significantly increased after 6 h. Treatment of cells for 6 h with 1 to 20 mM glutamate resulted in a 35 to 45% cell death that was associated with a 45 to 65% increase in the expression of caspase-3 protein. Pretreatment with caspase-3-protease inhibitor z-DEVD or pan-caspase inhibitor z-VAD significantly decreased glutamate-induced cell death of cortical cells. Exposure of cells to glutamate for 6 h in the presence or

  10. Cholinergic Neurons Excite Cortically Projecting Basal Forebrain GABAergic Neurons

    Yang, Chun; McKenna, James T.; Zant, Janneke C.; Winston, Stuart; Basheer, Radhika


    The basal forebrain (BF) plays an important role in the control of cortical activation and attention. Understanding the modulation of BF neuronal activity is a prerequisite to treat disorders of cortical activation involving BF dysfunction, such as Alzheimer's disease. Here we reveal the interaction between cholinergic neurons and cortically projecting BF GABAergic neurons using immunohistochemistry and whole-cell recordings in vitro. In GAD67-GFP knock-in mice, BF cholinergic (choline acetyltransferase-positive) neurons were intermingled with GABAergic (GFP+) neurons. Immunohistochemistry for the vesicular acetylcholine transporter showed that cholinergic fibers apposed putative cortically projecting GABAergic neurons containing parvalbumin (PV). In coronal BF slices from GAD67-GFP knock-in or PV-tdTomato mice, pharmacological activation of cholinergic receptors with bath application of carbachol increased the firing rate of large (>20 μm diameter) BF GFP+ and PV (tdTomato+) neurons, which exhibited the intrinsic membrane properties of cortically projecting neurons. The excitatory effect of carbachol was blocked by antagonists of M1 and M3 muscarinic receptors in two subpopulations of BF GABAergic neurons [large hyperpolarization-activated cation current (Ih) and small Ih, respectively]. Ion substitution experiments and reversal potential measurements suggested that the carbachol-induced inward current was mediated mainly by sodium-permeable cation channels. Carbachol also increased the frequency of spontaneous excitatory and inhibitory synaptic currents. Furthermore, optogenetic stimulation of cholinergic neurons/fibers caused a mecamylamine- and atropine-sensitive inward current in putative GABAergic neurons. Thus, cortically projecting, BF GABAergic/PV neurons are excited by neighboring BF and/or brainstem cholinergic neurons. Loss of cholinergic neurons in Alzheimer's disease may impair cortical activation, in part, through disfacilitation of BF cortically

  11. Electrical Stimulation Using Conductive Polymer Polypyrrole Counters Reduced Neurite Outgrowth of Primary Prefrontal Cortical Neurons from NRG1-KO and DISC1-LI Mice.

    Zhang, Qingsheng; Esrafilzadeh, Dorna; Crook, Jeremy M; Kapsa, Robert; Stewart, Elise M; Tomaskovic-Crook, Eva; Wallace, Gordon G; Huang, Xu-Feng


    Deficits in neurite outgrowth, possibly involving dysregulation of risk genes neuregulin-1 (NRG1) and disrupted in schizophrenia 1 (DISC1) have been implicated in psychiatric disorders including schizophrenia. Electrical stimulation using conductive polymers has been shown to stimulate neurite outgrowth of differentiating human neural stem cells. This study investigated the use of the electroactive conductive polymer polypyrrole (Ppy) to counter impaired neurite outgrowth of primary pre-frontal cortical (PFC) neurons from NRG1-knock out (NRG1-KO) and DISC1-locus impairment (DISC1-LI) mice. Whereas NRG1-KO and DISC1-LI exhibited reduced neurite length and number of neurite branches compared to wild-type controls, this was not apparent for cultures on electroactive Ppy. Additionally, the use of the Ppy substrate normalised the synaptophysin and PSD95 protein and mRNA expression whereas both are usually reduced by NRG1-KO or DISC1-LI. Our findings support the utility of Ppy mediated electrical stimulation to prevent the reduction of neurite outgrowth and related synaptic protein expression in the primary PFC neurons from NRG1-KO and DISC1-LI mice, providing proof-of-concept for treating neurodevelopmental diseases including schizophrenia.

  12. Clinacanthus nutans Extracts Modulate Epigenetic Link to Cytosolic Phospholipase A2 Expression in SH-SY5Y Cells and Primary Cortical Neurons.

    Tan, Charlene Siew-Hon; Ho, Christabel Fung-Yih; Heng, Swan-Ser; Wu, Jui-Sheng; Tan, Benny Kwong-Huat; Ng, Yee-Kong; Sun, Grace Y; Lin, Teng-Nan; Ong, Wei-Yi


    Clinacanthus nutans Lindau (C. nutans), commonly known as Sabah Snake Grass in southeast Asia, is widely used in folk medicine due to its analgesic, antiviral, and anti-inflammatory properties. Our recent study provided evidence for the regulation of cytosolic phospholipase A2 (cPLA2) mRNA expression by epigenetic factors (Tan et al. in Mol Neurobiol. doi: 10.1007/s12035-015-9314-z , 2015). This enzyme catalyzes the release of arachidonic acid from glycerophospholipids, and formation of pro-inflammatory eicosanoids or toxic lipid peroxidation products such as 4-hydroxynonenal. In this study, we examined the effects of C. nutans ethanol leaf extracts on epigenetic regulation of cPLA2 mRNA expression in SH-SY5Y human neuroblastoma cells and mouse primary cortical neurons. C. nutans modulated induction of cPLA2 expression in SH-SY5Y cells by histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors, MS-275, MC-1568, and TSA. C. nutans extracts also inhibited histone acetylase (HAT) activity. Levels of cPLA2 mRNA expression were increased in primary cortical neurons subjected to 0.5-h oxygen-glucose deprivation injury (OGD). This increase was significantly inhibited by C. nutans treatment. Treatment of primary neurons with the HDAC inhibitor MS-275 augmented OGD-induced cPLA2 mRNA expression, and this increase was modulated by C. nutans extracts. OGD-stimulated increase in cPLA2 mRNA expression was also reduced by a Tip60 HAT inhibitor, NU9056. In view of a key role of cPLA2 in the production of pro-inflammatory eicosanoids and free radical damage, and the fact that epigenetic effects on genes are often long-lasting, results suggest a role for C. nutans and phytochemicals to inhibit the production of arachidonic acid-derived pro-inflammatory eicosanoids and chronic inflammation, through epigenetic regulation of cPLA2 expression.

  13. Effect of brain-derived neurotrophic factor on activity-regulated cytoskeleton-associated protein gene expression in primary frontal cortical neurons. Comparison with NMDA and AMPA

    El-Sayed, Mona; Hofman-Bang, Jacob; Mikkelsen, Jens D


    The effect of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) on activity-regulated cytoskeleton-associated protein (Arc) mRNA levels in primary neuronal cultures of rat frontal cortex was characterized pharmacologically and compared to the effect on expression of c-fos, bdnf, neuritin, cox-2 as examples...... of other immediate early genes. BDNF induced a very strong increase (around 100 fold) in Arc mRNA and the maximal effect seen at 25 ng/ml. The effect was dose-dependent with EC50 around 1.6 ng/ml. The time profile revealed a significant effect after 25 min. BDNF also increased levels of c-Fos, neuritin...... and BDNF mRNA, but not COX-2 mRNA. The pharmacological profile of NMDA and AMPA-induced arc gene expression in frontal cortical neurons was compared to BDNF. NMDA and AMPA increased Arc mRNA but their maximal effect did not exceed 20-fold. The effect of AMPA was completely blocked by the NMDA receptor...

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

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

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

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

  16. Erythropoietin Rescues Primary Rat Cortical Neurons by Altering the Nrf2:Bach1 Ratio: Roles of Extracellular Signal-Regulated Kinase 1/2.

    Zhang, Li-Min; Zhang, Dong-Xue; Zhao, Xiao-Chun; Sun, Wenbo


    While inhalation anesthetics are indispensable, and generally considered safe and effective, there is growing concern about the selective neurotoxicity of these agents, especially sevoflurane. Erythropoetin (EPO)-induced protection against sevoflurane-induced neuronal death is an effective intervention, but the underlying mechanism is poorly understood. Extracellular signal-related kinases (Erk) 1/2 plays a pivotal role in cell growth and proliferation. Alteration of the nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor (Nrf2)/BTB-to-CNC homology 1 (Bach1) ratio by Erk1/2 ameliorates the oxidative stress which occurs in human macrophages. Primary cortical neuron cultures exposed to sevoflurane were assessed for Nrf2, Bach1, total Erk1/2, and phosphorylated Erk1/2 with the following: 3-(4, 5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2, 5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide; propidium iodide uptake; lactate dehydrogenase; malondialdehyde (MDA); superoxide dismutase (SOD); and Western blot. Sevoflurane exposure increased cell death, injury, and MDA (n = 9, P < 0.05), but decreased cell viability and the Nrf2:Bach1 ratio (n = 9, P < 0.05) and down-regulated SOD (n = 9, P < 0.05), while EPO partially rescued the neurotoxicity induced by sevoflurane (n = 9, P < 0.05). Inhibition of Erk1/2 phosphorylation via PD98059 reversed the protective effect of EPO (n = 9, P < 0.05). Thus, protection of EPO markedly attenuated death of neurons exposed to sevoflurane by altering the Nrf2:Bach1 ratio mediated by phosphorylation and activation of Erk1/2.

  17. Developmental changes of TrkB signaling in response to exogenous brain-derived neurotrophic factor in primary cortical neurons.

    Zhou, Xianju; Xiao, Hua; Wang, Hongbing


    Neocortical circuits are most sensitive to sensory experience during a critical period of early development. Previous studies implicate that brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and GABAergic inhibition may control the timing of the critical period. By using an in vitro maturation model, we found that neurons at DIV (day in vitro) 7, around a period when functional synapses start to form and GABAergic inhibition emerges, displayed the most dynamic activation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 (ERK1/2) and CREB by exogenous BDNF. The BDNF-stimulated transcriptional up-regulation of CREB target genes was also the highest in DIV 7 neurons. The basal level of ERK1/2 and CREB activity, as well as the expression of CREB target genes, increased along with maturation, and neurons at DIV 13 and 22 displayed less dynamic responses to BDNF. Furthermore, we found that the developmentally regulated GABAergic inhibition correlated with the decline of BDNF-mediated signaling during maturation. BDNF stimulation along with suppression of GABAergic inhibition enhanced the activation of ERK1/2-CREB signaling and gene transcription in mature neurons. Conversely, BDNF stimulation along with enhancement of GABAergic inhibition reduced the overall induction of intracellular signaling in younger neurons. We propose that the less dynamic molecular changes may play a certain role in the loss of plasticity during maturation.

  18. Serotonin modulation of cortical neurons and networks

    Pau eCelada


    Full Text Available The serotonergic pathways originating in the dorsal and median raphe nuclei (DR and MnR, respectively are critically involved in cortical function. Serotonin (5-HT, acting on postsynaptic and presynaptic receptors, is involved in cognition, mood, impulse control and motor functions by 1 modulating the activity of different neuronal types, and 2 varying the release of other neurotransmitters, such as glutamate, GABA, acetylcholine and dopamine. Also, 5-HT seems to play an important role in cortical development. Of all cortical regions, the frontal lobe is the area most enriched in serotonergic axons and 5-HT receptors. 5-HT and selective receptor agonists modulate the excitability of cortical neurons and their discharge rate through the activation of several receptor subtypes, of which the 5-HT1A, 5-HT1B, 5-HT2A and 5-HT3 subtypes play a major role. Little is known, however, on the role of other excitatory receptors moderately expressed in cortical areas, such as 5-HT2C, 5-HT4, 5-HT6 and 5-HT7. In vitro and in vivo studies suggest that 5-HT1A and 5-HT2A receptors are key players and exert opposite effects on the activity of pyramidal neurons in the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC. The activation of 5-HT1A receptors in mPFC hyperpolarizes pyramidal neurons whereas that of 5-HT2A receptors results in neuronal depolarization, reduction of the afterhyperpolarization and increase of excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs and of discharge rate. 5-HT can also stimulate excitatory (5-HT2A and 5-HT3 and inhibitory (5-HT1A receptors in GABA interneurons to modulate synaptic GABA inputs onto pyramidal neurons. Likewise, the pharmacological manipulation of various 5-HT receptors alters oscillatory activity in PFC, suggesting that 5-HT is also involved in the control of cortical network activity. A better understanding of the actions of 5-HT in PFC may help to develop treatments for mood and cognitive disorders associated with an abnormal function of the

  19. Cortical cell and neuron density estimates in one chimpanzee hemisphere.

    Collins, Christine E; Turner, Emily C; Sawyer, Eva Kille; Reed, Jamie L; Young, Nicole A; Flaherty, David K; Kaas, Jon H


    The density of cells and neurons in the neocortex of many mammals varies across cortical areas and regions. This variability is, perhaps, most pronounced in primates. Nonuniformity in the composition of cortex suggests regions of the cortex have different specializations. Specifically, regions with densely packed neurons contain smaller neurons that are activated by relatively few inputs, thereby preserving information, whereas regions that are less densely packed have larger neurons that have more integrative functions. Here we present the numbers of cells and neurons for 742 discrete locations across the neocortex in a chimpanzee. Using isotropic fractionation and flow fractionation methods for cell and neuron counts, we estimate that neocortex of one hemisphere contains 9.5 billion cells and 3.7 billion neurons. Primary visual cortex occupies 35 cm(2) of surface, 10% of the total, and contains 737 million densely packed neurons, 20% of the total neurons contained within the hemisphere. Other areas of high neuron packing include secondary visual areas, somatosensory cortex, and prefrontal granular cortex. Areas of low levels of neuron packing density include motor and premotor cortex. These values reflect those obtained from more limited samples of cortex in humans and other primates.

  20. High-Degree Neurons Feed Cortical Computations.

    Nicholas M Timme


    Full Text Available Recent work has shown that functional connectivity among cortical neurons is highly varied, with a small percentage of neurons having many more connections than others. Also, recent theoretical developments now make it possible to quantify how neurons modify information from the connections they receive. Therefore, it is now possible to investigate how information modification, or computation, depends on the number of connections a neuron receives (in-degree or sends out (out-degree. To do this, we recorded the simultaneous spiking activity of hundreds of neurons in cortico-hippocampal slice cultures using a high-density 512-electrode array. This preparation and recording method combination produced large numbers of neurons recorded at temporal and spatial resolutions that are not currently available in any in vivo recording system. We utilized transfer entropy (a well-established method for detecting linear and nonlinear interactions in time series and the partial information decomposition (a powerful, recently developed tool for dissecting multivariate information processing into distinct parts to quantify computation between neurons where information flows converged. We found that computations did not occur equally in all neurons throughout the networks. Surprisingly, neurons that computed large amounts of information tended to receive connections from high out-degree neurons. However, the in-degree of a neuron was not related to the amount of information it computed. To gain insight into these findings, we developed a simple feedforward network model. We found that a degree-modified Hebbian wiring rule best reproduced the pattern of computation and degree correlation results seen in the real data. Interestingly, this rule also maximized signal propagation in the presence of network-wide correlations, suggesting a mechanism by which cortex could deal with common random background input. These are the first results to show that the extent to

  1. Effect of mescaline on single cortical neurones.

    Bradshaw, C M; Roberts, M H; Szabadi, E


    The effects of mescaline upon single cortical neurones were studied, using the microiontophoretic technique. Mescaline elicited excitatory and depressant responses similar to those evoked by noradrenaline (NA) and 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HI). The responses to NA and mescaline were usually in the same direction, the neurone being either excited by both drugs or depressed by both drugs. The correlation between the effects of mescaline and 5-HT, however, was less consistent. The beta-adrenoceptor blocking agent MJ-1999 and the 5-HT antagonist methysergide were both effective in antagonizing mescaline responses.

  2. In vivo patch-clamp analysis of response properties of rat primary somatosensory cortical neurons responding to noxious stimulation of the facial skin

    Nasu Masanori


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Although it has been widely accepted that the primary somatosensory (SI cortex plays an important role in pain perception, it still remains unclear how the nociceptive mechanisms of synaptic transmission occur at the single neuron level. The aim of the present study was to examine whether noxious stimulation applied to the orofacial area evokes the synaptic response of SI neurons in urethane-anesthetized rats using an in vivo patch-clamp technique. Results In vivo whole-cell current-clamp recordings were performed in rat SI neurons (layers III-IV. Twenty-seven out of 63 neurons were identified in the mechanical receptive field of the orofacial area (36 neurons showed no receptive field and they were classified as non-nociceptive (low-threshold mechanoreceptive; 6/27, 22% and nociceptive neurons. Nociceptive neurons were further divided into wide-dynamic range neurons (3/27, 11% and nociceptive-specific neurons (18/27, 67%. In the majority of these neurons, a proportion of the excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs reached the threshold, and then generated random discharges of action potentials. Noxious mechanical stimuli applied to the receptive field elicited a discharge of action potentials on the barrage of EPSPs. In the case of noxious chemical stimulation applied as mustard oil to the orofacial area, the membrane potential shifted depolarization and the rate of spontaneous discharges gradually increased as did the noxious pinch-evoked discharge rates, which were usually associated with potentiated EPSP amplitudes. Conclusions The present study provides evidence that SI neurons in deep layers III-V respond to the temporal summation of EPSPs due to noxious mechanical and chemical stimulation applied to the orofacial area and that these neurons may contribute to the processing of nociceptive information, including hyperalgesia.

  3. Properties of persistent postnatal cortical subplate neurons.

    Torres-Reveron, Juan; Friedlander, Michael J


    Subplate (SP) neurons are important for the proper development of thalamocortical innervation. They are necessary for formation of ocular dominance and orientation columns in visual cortex. During the perinatal period, many SP neurons die. The surviving cohort forms interstitial cells in the white matter (WM) and a band of horizontally oriented cells below layer VI (layer VIb, layer VII, or subplate cells). Although the function of embryonic SP neurons has been well established, the functional roles of WM and postnatal SP cells are not known. We used a combination of anatomical, immunohistochemical, and electrophysiological techniques to explore the dendritic morphology, neurotransmitter phenotype, intrinsic electrophysiological, and synaptic input properties of these surviving cells in the rat visual cortex. The density of SP and WM cells significantly decreases during the first month of life. Both populations express neuronal markers and have extensive dendritic arborizations within the SP, WM, and to the overlying visual cortex. Some intrinsic electrophysiological properties of SP and WM cells are similar: each generates high-frequency slowly adapting trains of action potentials in response to a sustained depolarization. However, SP cells exhibit greater frequency-dependent action potential broadening than WM neurons. Both cell types receive predominantly AMPA/kainate receptor-mediated excitatory synaptic input that undergoes paired-pulse facilitation as well as NMDA receptor and GABAergic input. Synaptic inputs to these cells can also undergo long-term synaptic plasticity. Thus, surviving SP and WM cells are functional electrogenic neurons integrated within the postnatal visual cortical circuit.

  4. Acetaminophen induces apoptosis in rat cortical neurons.

    Inmaculada Posadas

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Acetaminophen (AAP is widely prescribed for treatment of mild pain and fever in western countries. It is generally considered a safe drug and the most frequently reported adverse effect associated with acetaminophen is hepatotoxicity, which generally occurs after acute overdose. During AAP overdose, encephalopathy might develop and contribute to morbidity and mortality. Our hypothesis is that AAP causes direct neuronal toxicity contributing to the general AAP toxicity syndrome. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We report that AAP causes direct toxicity on rat cortical neurons both in vitro and in vivo as measured by LDH release. We have found that AAP causes concentration-dependent neuronal death in vitro at concentrations (1 and 2 mM that are reached in human plasma during AAP overdose, and that are also reached in the cerebrospinal fluid of rats for 3 hours following i.p injection of AAP doses (250 and 500 mg/kg that are below those required to induce acute hepatic failure in rats. AAP also increases both neuronal cytochrome P450 isoform CYP2E1 enzymatic activity and protein levels as determined by Western blot, leading to neuronal death through mitochondrial-mediated mechanisms that involve cytochrome c release and caspase 3 activation. In addition, in vivo experiments show that i.p. AAP (250 and 500 mg/kg injection induces neuronal death in the rat cortex as measured by TUNEL, validating the in vitro data. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The data presented here establish, for the first time, a direct neurotoxic action by AAP both in vivo and in vitro in rats at doses below those required to produce hepatotoxicity and suggest that this neurotoxicity might be involved in the general toxic syndrome observed during patient APP overdose and, possibly, also when AAP doses in the upper dosing schedule are used, especially if other risk factors (moderate drinking, fasting, nutritional impairment are present.

  5. Memantine, a Low-Affinity NMDA Receptor Antagonist, Protects against Methylmercury-Induced Cytotoxicity of Rat Primary Cultured Cortical Neurons, Involvement of Ca(2+) Dyshomeostasis Antagonism, and Indirect Antioxidation Effects.

    Liu, Wei; Xu, Zhaofa; Yang, Tianyao; Xu, Bin; Deng, Yu; Feng, Shu


    Methylmercury (MeHg) is an extremely dangerous environmental pollutant that induces severe toxic effects in the central nervous system. Neuronal damage plays critical roles mediating MeHg-induced loss of brain function and neurotoxicity. The molecular mechanisms of MeHg neurotoxicity are incompletely understood. The objective of the study is to explore mechanisms that contribute to MeHg-induced neurocyte injuries focusing on neuronal Ca(2+) dyshomeostasis and alteration of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) expression, as well as oxidative stress in primary cultured cortical neurons. In addition, the neuroprotective effects of memantine against MeHg cytotoxicity were also investigated. The cortical neurons were exposed to 0, 0.01, 0.1, 1, or 2 μM methylmercury chloride (MeHgCl) for 0.5-12 h, or pre-treated with 2.5, 5, 10, or 20 μM memantine for 0.5-6 h, respectively; cell viability and LDH release were then quantified. For further experiments, 2.5, 5, and 10 μM of memantine pre-treatment for 3 h followed by 1 μM MeHgCl for 6 h were performed for evaluation of neuronal injuries, specifically addressing apoptosis; intracellular free Ca(2+) concentrations; ATPase activities; calpain activities; expressions of NMDAR subunits (NR1, NR2A, NR2B); NPSH levels; and ROS formation. Exposure of MeHgCl resulted in toxicity of cortical neurons, which were shown as a loss of cell viability, high levels of LDH release, morphological changes, and cell apoptosis. Moreover, intracellular Ca(2+) dyshomeostasis, ATPase activities inhibition, calpain activities, and NMDARs expression alteration were observed with 1 μM MeHgCl administration. Last but not least, NPSH depletion and reactive oxygen species (ROS) overproduction showed an obvious oxidative stress in neurons. However, memantine pre-treatment dose-dependently antagonized MeHg-induced neuronal toxic effects, apoptosis, Ca(2+) dyshomeostasis, NMDARs expression alteration, and oxidative stress. In conclusion

  6. Short-term memory in networks of dissociated cortical neurons.

    Dranias, Mark R; Ju, Han; Rajaram, Ezhilarasan; VanDongen, Antonius M J


    Short-term memory refers to the ability to store small amounts of stimulus-specific information for a short period of time. It is supported by both fading and hidden memory processes. Fading memory relies on recurrent activity patterns in a neuronal network, whereas hidden memory is encoded using synaptic mechanisms, such as facilitation, which persist even when neurons fall silent. We have used a novel computational and optogenetic approach to investigate whether these same memory processes hypothesized to support pattern recognition and short-term memory in vivo, exist in vitro. Electrophysiological activity was recorded from primary cultures of dissociated rat cortical neurons plated on multielectrode arrays. Cultures were transfected with ChannelRhodopsin-2 and optically stimulated using random dot stimuli. The pattern of neuronal activity resulting from this stimulation was analyzed using classification algorithms that enabled the identification of stimulus-specific memories. Fading memories for different stimuli, encoded in ongoing neural activity, persisted and could be distinguished from each other for as long as 1 s after stimulation was terminated. Hidden memories were detected by altered responses of neurons to additional stimulation, and this effect persisted longer than 1 s. Interestingly, network bursts seem to eliminate hidden memories. These results are similar to those that have been reported from similar experiments in vivo and demonstrate that mechanisms of information processing and short-term memory can be studied using cultured neuronal networks, thereby setting the stage for therapeutic applications using this platform.

  7. Computational Study of Subdural Cortical Stimulation: Effects of Simulating Anisotropic Conductivity on Activation of Cortical Neurons.

    Hyeon Seo

    Full Text Available Subdural cortical stimulation (SuCS is an appealing method in the treatment of neurological disorders, and computational modeling studies of SuCS have been applied to determine the optimal design for electrotherapy. To achieve a better understanding of computational modeling on the stimulation effects of SuCS, the influence of anisotropic white matter conductivity on the activation of cortical neurons was investigated in a realistic head model. In this paper, we constructed pyramidal neuronal models (layers 3 and 5 that showed primary excitation of the corticospinal tract, and an anatomically realistic head model reflecting complex brain geometry. The anisotropic information was acquired from diffusion tensor magnetic resonance imaging (DT-MRI and then applied to the white matter at various ratios of anisotropic conductivity. First, we compared the isotropic and anisotropic models; compared to the isotropic model, the anisotropic model showed that neurons were activated in the deeper bank during cathodal stimulation and in the wider crown during anodal stimulation. Second, several popular anisotropic principles were adapted to investigate the effects of variations in anisotropic information. We observed that excitation thresholds varied with anisotropic principles, especially with anodal stimulation. Overall, incorporating anisotropic conductivity into the anatomically realistic head model is critical for accurate estimation of neuronal responses; however, caution should be used in the selection of anisotropic information.

  8. Protective effects of berberine against amyloid beta-induced toxicity in cultured rat cortical neurons

    Jing Wang; Yanjun Zhang; Shuai Du; Mixia Zhang


    Berberine, a major constituent of Coptidis rhizoma, exhibits neural protective effects. The present study analyzed the potential protective effect of berberine against amyloid G-induced cytotoxicity in rat cerebral cortical neurons. Alzheimer's disease cell models were treated with 0.5 and 2 μmol/Lberberine for 36 hours to inhibit amyloid G-induced toxicity. Methyl thiazolyl tetrazolium assay and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated dUTP nick-end labeling staining results showed that berberine significantly increased cell viability and reduced cell apoptosis in primary cultured rat cortical neurons. In addition, western blot analysis revealed a protective effect of berberine against amyloid β-induced toxicity in cultured cortical neurons, which coincided with significantly decreased abnormal up-regulation of activated caspase-3. These results showed that berberine exhibited a protective effect against amyloid 13-induced cytotoxicity in cultured rat cortical neurons.

  9. Ginkgolides protects cultured cortical neurons against excitotoxic and oxidative insults

    ZHANGYu-Yang; YUQing-Hai; YOUSong; SHENGLi


    AIM: The neurotoxicity of glutamate is associated with neurological disorders including hypoxic-ischaemic brain injury. Studies using cultured cortical neurons have demonstrated that exposure to glutamate produced delayed degeneration of mature neurons. Oxygen free radicals generated during injury have been postulated to be a major cause of neuronal cell

  10. The changing roles of neurons in the cortical subplate

    Michael J Friedlander


    Full Text Available Neurons may serve different functions over the course of an organism’s life. Recent evidence suggests that cortical subplate neurons including those that reside in the white matter may perform longitudinal multi-tasking at different stages of development. These cells play a key role in early cortical development in coordinating thalamocortical reciprocal innervation. At later stages of development, they become integrated within the cortical microcircuitry. This type of longitudinal multi-tasking can enhance the capacity for information processing by populations of cells serving different functions over the lifespan. Subplate cells are initially derived when cells from the ventricular zone underlying the cortex migrate to the cortical preplate that is subsequently split by the differentiating neurons of the cortical plate with some neurons locating in the marginal zone and others settling below in the subplate (SP. While the cortical plate neurons form most of the cortical layers (layers 2-6, the marginal zone neurons form layer 1 and the SP neurons become interstitial cells of the white matter as well as forming a compact sublayer along the bottom of layer 6. After serving as transient innervation targets for thalamocortical axons, most of these cells die and layer 4 neurons become innervated by thalamic axons. However, 10-20% survives, remaining into adulthood along the bottom of layer 6 and as a scattered population of interstitial neurons in the white matter. Surviving subplate cells’ axons project throughout the overlying laminae, reaching layer 1 and issuing axon collaterals within white matter and in lower layer 6. This suggests that they participate in local synaptic networks, as well. Moreover, they receive excitatory and inhibitory synaptic inputs, potentially monitoring outputs from axon collaterals of cortical efferents, from cortical afferents and/or from each other. We explore our understanding of the functional connectivity of

  11. Sevoflurane post-conditioning protects primary rat cortical neurons against oxygen-glucose deprivation/resuscitation via down-regulation in mitochondrial apoptosis axis of Bid, Bim, Puma-Bax and Bak mediated by Erk1/2.

    Zhang, Li-Min; Zhao, Xiao-Chun; Sun, Wen-Bo; Li, Rui; Jiang, Xiao-Jing


    Temporal post-conditioning helps provide neuroprotection against brain injury secondary to ischemia-reperfusion and is considered an effective intervention, but the exact mechanism of sevoflurane post-conditioning is unclear. The essential axis involves activator Bid, Bim, Puma (BH3s), Bax, and Bak; activates the mitochondrial death program; and might be involved in a cell death signal. Extracellular signal-related kinases 1/2 (Erk1/2) play a pivotal role in cell growth and proliferation. We hypothesized that sevoflurane post-conditioning might inhibit Bid, Bim, Puma, Bax, and Bak expression and is activated by phosphor-Erk1/2 to decrease neuronal death. To test this hypothesis, we exposed primary cortical neuron cultures to oxygen-glucose deprivation for 1h, along with resuscitation for 24h (OGD/R). MTT assays, propidium iodide uptake (PI), JC-1 fluorescence, and Western blot indicated the following: decreased cell viability (PPuma, Bax, and Bak expression with OGD/R exposure. Inhibition of Erk1/2 phosphorylation could attenuate sevoflurane post-conditioning that mediated an increase in neuronal viability and mitochondrial membrane potential, as well as a decrease in cell death and Bid, Bim, Puma, Bax, and Bak expression after OGD/R treatment. The results demonstrated that sevoflurane post-conditioning caused a marked decrease in cortical neuronal death secondary to OGD/R exposure through the downregulation of the mitochondrial apoptosis axis involving Bid, Bim, Puma, Bax, and Bak that was mediated by the phosphorylation/activation of Erk1/2.

  12. Sevoflurane Post-conditioning Protects Primary Rat Cortical Neurons Against Oxygen-Glucose Deprivation/Resuscitation: Roles of Extracellular Signal-Regulated Kinase 1/2 and Bid, Bim, Puma.

    Zhang, Limin; Zhao, Xiaochun; Jiang, Xiaojing


    Temporal post-conditioning to induce neuroprotection against brain ischemia-reperfusion injury insult is considered to be an effective intervention, but the exact mechanisms of sevoflurane post-conditioning are poorly understood. Extracellular signal-related kinases 1/2 (Erk1/2) play a pivotal role in the cell growth and proliferation. The essential axis of activator Bid, Bim, Puma (BH3s) and BAX, BAK in activating the mitochondrial death program might offer common ground for cell death signal. We hypothesized that, sevoflurane post-conditioning might inhibit the expression of Bid, Bim and Puma and is activated by phosphor-Erk1/2 to reduce neuronal death. To test this hypothesis, we exposed primary cultured cortical neurons to oxygen-glucose deprivation for 1 h and resuscitation for 24 h (OGD/R). The assays of MTT, propidium iodide uptake, JC-1 fluorescence and western blot demonstrated that OGD/R exposure reduced cell viability, increased cell death, decreased mitochondrial membrane potential and the expressions of Bid, Bim, and Puma. Inhibition of Erk1/2 phosphorylation could partially attenuate 2 % of sevoflurane post-conditioning mediated increase in neuronal viability and mitochondrial membrane potential, and also a decrease in cell death and expression of Bid, Bim and Puma after OGD/R treatment. The results demonstrated that, the protection of sevoflurane post-conditioning markedly reducing death of cortical neurons exposed to OGD/R could be correlated with down-regulation of Bid, Bim and Puma expression mediated by phosphorylation/activation of Erk1/2.

  13. Neuronal Sirt3 protects against excitotoxic injury in mouse cortical neuron culture.

    Sun Hee Kim

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Sirtuins (Sirt, a family of nicotinamide adenine nucleotide (NAD dependent deacetylases, are implicated in energy metabolism and life span. Among the known Sirt isoforms (Sirt1-7, Sirt3 was identified as a stress responsive deacetylase recently shown to play a role in protecting cells under stress conditions. Here, we demonstrated the presence of Sirt3 in neurons, and characterized the role of Sirt3 in neuron survival under NMDA-induced excitotoxicity. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: To induce excitotoxic injury, we exposed primary cultured mouse cortical neurons to NMDA (30 µM. NMDA induced a rapid decrease of cytoplasmic NAD (but not mitochondrial NAD in neurons through poly (ADP-ribose polymerase-1 (PARP-1 activation. Mitochondrial Sirt3 was increased following PARP-1 mediated NAD depletion, which was reversed by either inhibition of PARP-1 or exogenous NAD. We found that massive reactive oxygen species (ROS produced under this NAD depleted condition mediated the increase in mitochondrial Sirt3. By transfecting primary neurons with a Sirt3 overexpressing plasmid or Sirt3 siRNA, we showed that Sirt3 is required for neuroprotection against excitotoxicity. CONCLUSIONS: This study demonstrated for the first time that mitochondrial Sirt3 acts as a prosurvival factor playing an essential role to protect neurons under excitotoxic injury.

  14. Metabotropic glutamate receptor 2 and corticotrophin-releasing factor receptor-1 gene expression is differently regulated by BDNF in rat primary cortical neurons

    Jørgensen, Christinna V; Klein, Anders B; El-Sayed, Mona;


    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is important for neuronal survival and plasticity. Incorporation of matured receptor proteins is an integral part of synapse formation. However, whether BDNF increases synthesis and integration of receptors in functional synapses directly is unclear. We...... are particularly interested in the regulation of the 5-hydroxytryptamine receptor 2A (5-HT2A R). This receptor form a functional complex with the metabotropic glutamate receptor 2 (mGluR2) and is recruited to the cell membrane by the corticotrophin-releasing factor receptor 1 (CRF-R1). The effect of BDNF on gene...... expression for all these receptors, as well as a number of immediate-early genes, was pharmacologically characterized in primary neurons from rat frontal cortex. BDNF increased CRF-R1 mRNA levels up to fivefold, whereas mGluR2 mRNA levels were proportionally downregulated. No effect on 5-HT2A R mRNA was seen...

  15. More sensitivity of cortical GABAergic neurons than glutamatergic neurons in response to acidosis.

    Liu, Hua; Li, Fang; Wang, Chunyan; Su, Zhiqiang


    Acidosis impairs brain functions. Neuron-specific mechanisms underlying acidosis-induced brain dysfunction remain elusive. We studied the sensitivity of cortical GABAergic neurons and glutamatergic neurons to acidosis by whole-cell recording in brain slices. The acidification to the neurons was induced by perfusing artificial cerebral spinal fluid with lower pH. This acidification impairs excitability and synaptic transmission in the glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons. Acidosis impairs spiking capacity in the GABAergic neurons more than in the glutamatergic neurons. Acidosis also strengthens glutamatergic synaptic transmission and attenuates GABAergic synaptic transmission on the GABAergic neurons more than the glutamatergic neurons, which results in the functional impairment of these GABAergic neurons. This acidosis-induced dysfunction predominantly in the cortical GABAergic neurons drives the homeostasis of neuronal networks toward overexcitation and exacerbates neuronal impairment.

  16. (-) deprenyl attenuates aluminium induced neurotoxicity in primary cortical cultures.

    Munirathinam, S; Lakshmana, M K; Raju, T R


    The role of (-) deprenyl in offering neuroprotection to cortical neurons exposed to Aluminium chloride (AlCl3) was examined. Primary cortical cultures derived from newborn rats were exposed to AlCl3 on 6th day in vitro, at 100,200,400,600,800 and 1000 microM concentrations of AlCl3. After 48 h of AlCl3 exposure, many nerve cell bodies were swollen; a beading of neurites and a disruption of the neuritic network were also observed suggesting neurodegeneration. Lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) efflux increased in a dose-dependent manner (59-120%). (-) Deprenyl co-exposure at concentrations of 10(-7), 10(-8) and 10(-9) M significantly attenuated both the morphological alterations and the LDH efflux induced by AlCl3. This in vitro study has demonstrated that (-) deprenyl can protect neurons from aluminium induced neurotoxicity.

  17. Relating normalization to neuronal populations across cortical areas.

    Ruff, Douglas A; Alberts, Joshua J; Cohen, Marlene R


    Normalization, which divisively scales neuronal responses to multiple stimuli, is thought to underlie many sensory, motor, and cognitive processes. In every study where it has been investigated, neurons measured in the same brain area under identical conditions exhibit a range of normalization, ranging from suppression by nonpreferred stimuli (strong normalization) to additive responses to combinations of stimuli (no normalization). Normalization has been hypothesized to arise from interactions between neuronal populations, either in the same or different brain areas, but current models of normalization are not mechanistic and focus on trial-averaged responses. To gain insight into the mechanisms underlying normalization, we examined interactions between neurons that exhibit different degrees of normalization. We recorded from multiple neurons in three cortical areas while rhesus monkeys viewed superimposed drifting gratings. We found that neurons showing strong normalization shared less trial-to-trial variability with other neurons in the same cortical area and more variability with neurons in other cortical areas than did units with weak normalization. Furthermore, the cortical organization of normalization was not random: neurons recorded on nearby electrodes tended to exhibit similar amounts of normalization. Together, our results suggest that normalization reflects a neuron's role in its local network and that modulatory factors like normalization share the topographic organization typical of sensory tuning properties.

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

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


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

  19. Sulindac attenuates valproic acid-induced oxidative stress levels in primary cultured cortical neurons and ameliorates repetitive/stereotypic-like movement disorders in Wistar rats prenatally exposed to valproic acid.

    Zhang, Yinghua; Yang, Cailing; Yuan, Guoyan; Wang, Zhongping; Cui, Weigang; Li, Ruixi


    Accumulating evidence suggests that anti-inflammatory agents and antioxidants have neuroprotective properties and may be beneficial in the treatment of neurodevelopental disorders, such as autism. In the present study, the possible neuroprotective properties of sulindac, a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID), were investigated in vitro using cultured cortical neurons with valproic acid (VPA)-induced neurotoxicity, as well as in vivo through the behavioral analysis of rats prenatally exposed to VPA as a model of autism. VPA induced 4-hydroxynonenal (4-HNE) expression, reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation and decreased cell viability in primary cultured cortical neurons established from timed-pregnant (embryonic day 18) Wistar rat pups. However, co-incubation of the neurons with VPA and sulindac reduced oxidative stress and increased cell viability. The rats were administered an intraperitoneal injection with one of the following: VPA, sulindac, VPA and sulindac, or physiological saline, and their offspring were subjected to the open field test. During the test trials, repetitive/stereotypic-like movements for each rat were recorded and analyzed. The results revealed that treatment with both sulindac and VPA reduced the VPA-induced repetitive/stereotypic-like activity and the sulindac and VPA-treated animals responded better in the open field test compared to the VPA-treated animals. The results from the present study demonstrate that the antioxidant properties of sulindac may prove to be beneficial in the treatment of autism, suggesting that the upregulation of the Wnt/β-catenin signaling pathway disrupts oxidative homeostasis and facilitates susceptibility to autism.

  20. 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


    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.

  1. Neurodegenerative, with expression ATF-2 by p38 in cortical neurons.

    Hosseini, M; Ostad, N; Parivar, K; Ghahremani, M H


    DNA damage, as an important initiator of neuronal cell death, has been implicated in numerous neurodegenerative conditions. We previously delineated several pathways that control embryonic cortical neuronal cell death evoked by the DNA-damaging agent, camptothecin. The topisomerase-1 inhibitor, camptothecin, has been shown to induce cortical neuronal cell death in a reproducible and synchronistic manner. Primary embryonic neuronal cell culture cortical neurons were prepared. In the study, the survival % of neurons in camptothecin P38 group, after 6 hours (85%), 24 hours (64%) and 48 hours (50%), compared to camptothecin ATF-2 and P38 group after 4 hours (97 and 95%), have been significantly lower, and the expression % of neurons in camptothecin P38 group , after 6 hours (20%), 24 hours (40%) and 48 hours (55%), compared to camptothecin ATF-2 and P38 group after 4 hours (5 and 3%) have been significant lower (pATF-2 group after 24hours (30%), have been significant lower (pATF-2 in embryonic cortical neurons following DNA damage.

  2. Morphometric characteristics of Neuropeptide Y immunoreactive neurons of human cortical amygdaloid nucleus

    Mališ Miloš


    Full Text Available Introduction Cortical amygdaloid nucleus belongs to the corticomedial part of the amygdaloid complex. In this nucleus there are neurons that produce neuropetide Y. This peptide has important roles in sleeping, learning, memory, gastrointestinal regulation, anxiety, epilepsy, alcoholism and depression. Material and methods We investigated morphometric characteristics (numbers of primary dendrites, longer and shorter diameters of cell bodies and maximal radius of dendritic arborization of NPY immunoreactive neurons of human cortical amygdaloid nucleus on 6 male adult human brains, aged 46 to 77 years, by immunohistochemical avidin-biotin technique. Results Our investigation has shown that in this nucleus there is a moderate number of NPY immunoreactive neurons. 67% of found neurons were nonpyramidal, while 33% were pyramidal. Among the nonpyramidal neurons the dominant groups were multipolar neurons (41% - of which 25% were multipolar irregular, and 16% multipolar oval. Among the pyramidal neurons the dominant groups were the neurons with triangular shape of cell body (21%. All found NPY immunoreactive neurons (pyramidal and nonpyramidal altogether had intervals of values of numbers of primary dendrites 2 to 6, longer diameters of cell bodies 13 to 38 µm, shorter diameters of cell bodies 9 to 20 µm and maximal radius of dendritic arborization 50 to 340 µm. More than a half of investigated neurons (57% had 3 primary dendrites. Discussion and conclusion The other researchers did not find such percentage of pyramidal immunoreactive neurons in this amygdaloid nucleus. If we compare our results with the results of the ather researchers we can conclude that all pyramidal NPY immunoreactive neurons found in this human amygdaloid nucleus belong to the class I of neurons, and that all nonpyramidal NPY immunoreactive neurons belong to the class II of neurons described by other researchers. We suppose that all found pyramidal neurons were projectional.

  3. Low level laser therapy reduces oxidative stress in cortical neurons in vitro

    Huang, Ying-Ying; Tedford, Clark E.; McCarthy, Thomas; Hamblin, Michael R.


    It is accepted that the mechanisms of low level laser therapy (LLLT) involves photons that are absorbed in the mitochondria of cells and lead to increase of mitochondrial metabolism resulting in more electron transport, increase of mitochondrial membrane potential, and more ATP production. Intracellular calcium changes are seen that correlate with mitochondrial stimulation. The situation with two other intermediates is more complex however: reactive oxygen species (ROS) and nitric oxide (NO). Evidence exists that low levels of ROS are produced by LLLT in normal cells that can be beneficial by (for instance) activating NF-kB. However high fluences of light can produce large amounts of ROS that can damage the cells. In oxidatively stressed cells the situation may be different. We exposed primary cultured cortical neurons to hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) or cobalt chloride (CoCl2) oxidative insults in the presence or absence of LLLT (810-nm laser at 0.3 or 3 J/cm2). Cell viability of cortical neurons was determined by lactate dehydrogenase assay. ROS in neurons was detected using an ROS probe, MitoRox with confocal microscopy. Results showed that LLLT dose-dependently reversed ROS production and protected cortical neurons against H2O2 or CoCl2 induced oxidative injury in cultured cortical neurons. Conclusion: LLLT can protect cortical neurons against oxidative stress by reversing the levels of ROS.

  4. Effects of Morphology Constraint on Electrophysiological Properties of Cortical Neurons

    Zhu, Geng; Du, Liping; Jin, Lei; Offenhäusser, Andreas


    There is growing interest in engineering nerve cells in vitro to control architecture and connectivity of cultured neuronal networks or to build neuronal networks with predictable computational function. Pattern technologies, such as micro-contact printing, have been developed to design ordered neuronal networks. However, electrophysiological characteristics of the single patterned neuron haven’t been reported. Here, micro-contact printing, using polyolefine polymer (POP) stamps with high resolution, was employed to grow cortical neurons in a designed structure. The results demonstrated that the morphology of patterned neurons was well constrained, and the number of dendrites was decreased to be about 2. Our electrophysiological results showed that alterations of dendritic morphology affected firing patterns of neurons and neural excitability. When stimulated by current, though both patterned and un-patterned neurons presented regular spiking, the dynamics and strength of the response were different. The un-patterned neurons exhibited a monotonically increasing firing frequency in response to injected current, while the patterned neurons first exhibited frequency increase and then a slow decrease. Our findings indicate that the decrease in dendritic complexity of cortical neurons will influence their electrophysiological characteristics and alter their information processing activity, which could be considered when designing neuronal circuitries.

  5. Primary cortical brain cells influence osteoblast activity.

    Anissian, Lucas; Kirby, Michael; Stark, André


    The presence of neuropeptides and neuroreceptors in the bone have been reported in several studies. Bone turn-over seems to be controlled by the nervous system. The actual pathway or the control mechanism is still under investigation. In this study we investigate the changes in osteoblast cells if they are in co-culture with primary cortical brain cells. After seven days in co-culture with the primary fetal brain cells the osteoblast cells exhibited hypertrophic morphological changes and showed stronger ALP activity.


    Traditional developmental neurotoxicity tests performed in vivo are costly, time-consuming and utilize a large number of animals. In order to address these inefficiencies, in vitro models of neuronal development have been used in a first tier screening approach for developmenta...

  7. NMDA受体的活化调节原代皮层神经元的Wnt/β-catenin信号通路%NMDA Receptor Activation Regulates Wnt/β-catenin Signaling Pathway in Primary Cortical Neurons

    彭彦茜; 万仙子; 李屹晨; 李莎莎; 张薇; Tang Shaojun; 钟翎


    Wnt signaling has a key role in regulation of synaptic formation and function in the brain. Gluta-mate, which is the mainly excitatory transmitter, binds the glutamic acid receptor to regulate the activity of many signaling pathways. To determine the effect of NMDA receptor activation on Wnt/p-catenin signaling, primary cortical C57 mouse neurons were treated with 10 umol/L MSG and 50 umol/L NMDA and the components of Wnt/ p-catenin signaling were analyzed by Western blot or immunofluorescent experiments. We found that NMDA receptor activation not only increased the p-Ser9-GSK-3p to inhibit its activity but also caused an increase of intracellu-lar P-catenin and induced its translocation into nuclei, thereby up-regulated the downstream gene expression. These results suggest that NMDA receptors activation up-regulates Wnt/p-catenin signaling in primary cortical cultured neurons.%经典的Wnt/β-catenin信号通路在中枢神经系统突触形成和功能中发挥重要的调节作用.作为兴奋性神经递质的谷氨酸,与其受体结合,参与许多信号调节活动.为了探讨NMDA受体活化对Wnt/βcatenin信号通路的作用,该文利用18d的C57小鼠胚胎培养皮层神经元(离体10 d),用10 μmol/L谷氨酸钠(monosodium glutamate,MSG)和50 μmol/L N-甲基-D-天冬氨酸(NMDA)处理细胞,通过蛋白免疫印迹技术或者细胞免疫荧光染色分析Wnt/β-catenin信号通路关键成员.结果发现,NMDA受体的活化能使GSK-3β的Ser9位磷酸化水平增加,活性被抑制,胞浆内β-catenin蛋白降解减少,入核增加,激活下游基因表达.这些结果提示,NMDA受体激活能够上调Wnt/β-catenin信号通路.

  8. Multiple domains of tetanus toxin direct entry into primary neurons

    Blum, Faith C.; Tepp, William H.; Eric A. Johnson; Barbieri, Joseph T


    Tetanus toxin elicits spastic paralysis by cleaving VAMP-2 to inhibit neurotransmitter release in inhibitory neurons of the central nervous system. While the retrograde transport of TeNT from endosomes has been described, the initial steps that define how TeNT initiates trafficking to the retrograde system are undefined. The current study examines TeNT entry into primary cultured cortical neurons by TIRF microscopy. The initial association of TeNT with the plasma membrane was dependent upon g...

  9. Neuropeptide Y protects cerebral cortical neurons by regulating microglial immune function

    Qijun Li; Changzheng Dong; Wenling Li; Wei Bu; Jiang Wu; Wenqing Zhao


    Neuropeptide Y has been shown to inhibit the immunological activity of reactive microglia in the rat cerebral cortex, to reduce N-methyl-D-aspartate current (INMDA) in cortical neurons, and protect neurons. In this study, after primary cultured microglia from the cerebral cortex of rats were treated with lipopolysaccharide, interleukin-1β and tumor necrosis factor-α levels in the cell culture medium increased, and mRNA expression of these cytokines also increased. After primary cultured cortical neurons were incubated with the lipopolysaccharide-treated microg-lial conditioned medium, peak INMDA in neurons increased. These effects of lipopolysaccharide were suppressed by neuropeptide Y. After addition of the neuropeptide Y Y1 receptor antago-nist BIBP3226, the effects of neuropeptide Y completely disappeared. These results suggest that neuropeptide Y prevents excessive production of interleukin-1β and tumor necrosis factor-α by inhibiting microglial reactivity. This reduces INMDA in rat cortical neurons, preventing excitotoxic-ity, thereby protecting neurons.

  10. Control of cortical neuronal migration by glutamate and GABA

    Heiko J Luhmann


    Full Text Available Neuronal migration in the cortex is controlled by the paracrine action of the classical neurotransmitters glutamate and GABA. Glutamate controls radial migration of pyramidal neurons by acting primarily on NMDA receptors and regulates tangential migration of inhibitory interneurons by activating non-NMDA and NMDA receptors. GABA, acting on ionotropic GABAA-rho and GABAA receptors, has a dichotomic action on radially migrating neurons by acting as a GO signal in lower layers and as a STOP signal in upper cortical plate (CP, respectively. Metabotropic GABAB receptors promote radial migration into the CP and tangential migration of interneurons. Besides GABA, the endogenous GABAergic agonist taurine is a relevant agonist controlling radial migration. To a smaller extent glycine receptor activation can also influence radial and tangential migration. Activation of glutamate and GABA receptors causes increases in intracellular Ca2+ transients, which promote neuronal migration by acting on the cytoskeleton. Pharmacological or genetic manipulation of glutamate or GABA receptors during early corticogenesis induce heterotopic cell clusters in upper layers and loss of cortical lamination, i.e. neuronal migration disorders which can be associated with neurological or neuropsychiatric diseases. The pivotal role of NMDA and ionotropic GABA receptors in cortical neuronal migration is of major clinical relevance, since a number of drugs acting on these receptors (e.g. anti-epileptics, anesthetics, alcohol may disturb the normal migration pattern when present during early corticogenesis.

  11. Retinoic acid from the meninges regulates cortical neuron generation.

    Siegenthaler, Julie A; Ashique, Amir M; Zarbalis, Konstantinos; Patterson, Katelin P; Hecht, Jonathan H; Kane, Maureen A; Folias, Alexandra E; Choe, Youngshik; May, Scott R; Kume, Tsutomu; Napoli, Joseph L; Peterson, Andrew S; Pleasure, Samuel J


    Extrinsic signals controlling generation of neocortical neurons during embryonic life have been difficult to identify. In this study we demonstrate that the dorsal forebrain meninges communicate with the adjacent radial glial endfeet and influence cortical development. We took advantage of Foxc1 mutant mice with defects in forebrain meningeal formation. Foxc1 dosage and loss of meninges correlated with a dramatic reduction in both neuron and intermediate progenitor production and elongation of the neuroepithelium. Several types of experiments demonstrate that retinoic acid (RA) is the key component of this secreted activity. In addition, Rdh10- and Raldh2-expressing cells in the dorsal meninges were either reduced or absent in the Foxc1 mutants, and Rdh10 mutants had a cortical phenotype similar to the Foxc1 null mutants. Lastly, in utero RA treatment rescued the cortical phenotype in Foxc1 mutants. These results establish RA as a potent, meningeal-derived cue required for successful corticogenesis.

  12. Huwe1 interacts with Gadd45b under oxygen-glucose deprivation and reperfusion injury in primary Rat cortical neuronal cells

    He, Guo-qian; Xu, Wen-Ming; Li, Jin-fang; Shuai-shuai LI; Liu, Bin; Tan, Xiao-dan; Li, Chang-qing


    Background Growth arrest and DNA-damage inducible protein 45 beta (Gadd45b) is serving as a neuronal activity sensor. Brain ischemia induces the expression of Gadd45b, which stimulates recovery after stroke and may play a protective role in cerebral ischemia. However, little is known of the molecular mechanisms of how Gadd45b expression regulated and the down-stream targets in brain ischemia. Here, using an oxygen-glucose deprivation and reperfusion (OGD/R) model, we identified Huwe1/Mule/ARF...

  13. Rich-Club Organization in Effective Connectivity among Cortical Neurons

    Shimono, Masanori; Ito, Shinya; Yeh, Fang-Chin; Timme, Nicholas; Myroshnychenko, Maxym; Lapish, Christopher C.; Tosi, Zachary; Hottowy, Pawel; Smith, Wesley C.; Masmanidis, Sotiris C.; Litke, Alan M.; Sporns, Olaf; Beggs, John M.


    The performance of complex networks, like the brain, depends on how effectively their elements communicate. Despite the importance of communication, it is virtually unknown how information is transferred in local cortical networks, consisting of hundreds of closely spaced neurons. To address this, it is important to record simultaneously from hundreds of neurons at a spacing that matches typical axonal connection distances, and at a temporal resolution that matches synaptic delays. We used a 512-electrode array (60 μm spacing) to record spontaneous activity at 20 kHz from up to 500 neurons simultaneously in slice cultures of mouse somatosensory cortex for 1 h at a time. We applied a previously validated version of transfer entropy to quantify information transfer. Similar to in vivo reports, we found an approximately lognormal distribution of firing rates. Pairwise information transfer strengths also were nearly lognormally distributed, similar to reports of synaptic strengths. Some neurons transferred and received much more information than others, which is consistent with previous predictions. Neurons with the highest outgoing and incoming information transfer were more strongly connected to each other than chance, thus forming a “rich club.” We found similar results in networks recorded in vivo from rodent cortex, suggesting the generality of these findings. A rich-club structure has been found previously in large-scale human brain networks and is thought to facilitate communication between cortical regions. The discovery of a small, but information-rich, subset of neurons within cortical regions suggests that this population will play a vital role in communication, learning, and memory. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Many studies have focused on communication networks between cortical brain regions. In contrast, very few studies have examined communication networks within a cortical region. This is the first study to combine such a large number of neurons (several

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  14. Long-term exposure of mice to nucleoside analogues disrupts mitochondrial DNA maintenance in cortical neurons.

    Yulin Zhang

    Full Text Available Nucleoside analogue reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NRTI, an integral component of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART, was widely used to inhibit HIV replication. Long-term exposure to NRTIs can result in mitochondrial toxicity which manifests as lipoatrophy, lactic acidosis, cardiomyopathy and myopathy, as well as polyneuropathy. But the cerebral neurotoxicity of NRTIs is still not well known partly due to the restriction of blood-brain barrier (BBB and the complex microenvironment of the central nervous system (CNS. In this study, the Balb/c mice were administered 50 mg/kg stavudine (D4T, 100 mg/kg zidovudine (AZT, 50 mg/kg lamivudine (3TC or 50 mg/kg didanosine (DDI per day by intraperitoneal injection, five days per week for one or four months, and primary cortical neurons were cultured and exposed to 25 µM D4T, 50 µM AZT, 25 µM 3TC or 25 µM DDI for seven days. Then, single neuron was captured from mouse cerebral cortical tissues by laser capture microdissection. Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA levels of the primary cultured cortical neurons, and captured neurons or glial cells, and the tissues of brains and livers and muscles were analyzed by relative quantitative real-time PCR. The data showed that mtDNA did not lose in both NRTIs exposed cultured neurons and one month NRTIs treated mouse brains. In four months NRTIs treated mice, brain mtDNA levels remained unchanged even if the mtDNA levels of liver (except for 3TC and muscle significantly decreased. However, mtDNA deletion was significantly higher in the captured neurons from mtDNA unchanged brains. These results suggest that long-term exposure to NRTIs can result in mtDNA deletion in mouse cortical neurons.

  15. Morphology and ontogeny of rat perirhinal cortical neurons.

    Furtak, Sharon Christine; Moyer, James Russell; Brown, Thomas Huntington


    Golgi-impregnated neurons from rat perirhinal cortex (PR) were classified into one of 15 distinct morphological categories (N = 6,891). The frequency of neurons in each cell class was determined as a function of the layer of PR and the age of the animal, which ranged from postnatal day 0 (P0) to young adulthood (P45). The developmental appearance of Golgi-impregnated neurons conformed to the expected "inside-out" pattern of development, meaning that cells populated in deep before superficial layers of PR. The relative frequencies of different cell types changed during the first 2 weeks of postnatal development. The largest cells, which were pyramidal and spiny multipolar neurons, appeared earliest. Aspiny stellate neurons were the last to appear. The total number of Golgi-impregnated neurons peaked at P10-12, corresponding to the time of eye-opening. This early increase in the number of impregnated neurons parallels observations in other cortical areas. The relative frequency of the 15 cell types remained constant between P14 to P45. The proportion of pyramidal neurons in PR ( approximately 50%) was much smaller than is typical of neocortex ( approximately 70%). A correspondingly larger proportion of PR neurons were nonpyramidal cells that are less common in neocortex. The relative frequency distribution of cell types creates an overall impression of considerable morphological diversity, which is arguably related to the particular manner in which this periallocortical brain region processes and stores information.

  16. Coordinated scaling of cortical and cerebellar numbers of neurons

    Suzana Herculano-Houzel


    Full Text Available While larger brains possess concertedly larger cerebral cortices and cerebella, the relative size of the cerebral cortex increases with brain size, but relative cerebellar size does not. In the absence of data on numbers of neurons in these structures, this discrepancy has been used to dispute the hypothesis that the cerebral cortex and cerebellum function and have evolved in concert and to support a trend towards neocorticalization in evolution. However, the rationale for interpreting changes in absolute and relative size of the cerebral cortex and cerebellum relies on the assumption that they reflect absolute and relative numbers of neurons in these structures across all species – an assumption that our recent studies have shown to be flawed. Here I show for the first time that the numbers of neurons in the cerebral cortex and cerebellum are directly correlated across 19 mammalian species of 4 different orders, including humans, and increase concertedly in a similar fashion both within and across the orders Eulipotyphla (Insectivora, Rodentia, Scandentia and Primata, such that on average a ratio of 3.6 neurons in the cerebellum to every neuron in the cerebral cortex is maintained across species. This coordinated scaling of cortical and cerebellar numbers of neurons provides direct evidence in favor of concerted function, scaling and evolution of these brain structures, and suggests that the common notion that equates cognitive advancement with neocortical expansion should be revisited to consider in its stead the coordinated scaling of neocortex and cerebellum as a functional ensemble.

  17. Broadband Macroscopic Cortical Oscillations Emerge from Intrinsic Neuronal Response Failures

    Amir eGoldental


    Full Text Available Broadband spontaneous macroscopic neural oscillations are rhythmic cortical firing which was extensively examined during the last century, however, their possible origination is still controversial. In this work we show how macroscopic oscillations emerge in solely excitatory random networks and without topological constraints. We experimentally and theoretically show that these oscillations stem from the counterintuitive underlying mechanism - the intrinsic stochastic neuronal response failures. These neuronal response failures, which are characterized by short-term memory, lead to cooperation among neurons, resulting in sub- or several- Hertz macroscopic oscillations which coexist with high frequency gamma oscillations. A quantitative interplay between the statistical network properties and the emerging oscillations is supported by simulations of large networks based on single-neuron in-vitro experiments and a Langevin equation describing the network dynamics. Results call for the examination of these oscillations in the presence of inhibition and external drives.

  18. Thalamus-derived molecules promote survival and dendritic growth of developing cortical neurons.

    Sato, Haruka; Fukutani, Yuma; Yamamoto, Yuji; Tatara, Eiichi; Takemoto, Makoto; Shimamura, Kenji; Yamamoto, Nobuhiko


    The mammalian neocortex is composed of various types of neurons that reflect its laminar and area structures. It has been suggested that not only intrinsic but also afferent-derived extrinsic factors are involved in neuronal differentiation during development. However, the role and molecular mechanism of such extrinsic factors are almost unknown. Here, we attempted to identify molecules that are expressed in the thalamus and affect cortical cell development. First, thalamus-specific molecules were sought by comparing gene expression profiles of the developing rat thalamus and cortex using microarrays, and by constructing a thalamus-enriched subtraction cDNA library. A systematic screening by in situ hybridization showed that several genes encoding extracellular molecules were strongly expressed in sensory thalamic nuclei. Exogenous and endogenous protein localization further demonstrated that two extracellular molecules, Neuritin-1 (NRN1) and VGF, were transported to thalamic axon terminals. Application of NRN1 and VGF to dissociated cell culture promoted the dendritic growth. An organotypic slice culture experiment further showed that the number of primary dendrites in multipolar stellate neurons increased in response to NRN1 and VGF, whereas dendritic growth of pyramidal neurons was not promoted. These molecules also increased neuronal survival of multipolar neurons. Taken together, these results suggest that the thalamus-specific molecules NRN1 and VGF play an important role in the dendritic growth and survival of cortical neurons in a cell type-specific manner.

  19. Cortical neuronal mechanisms of sleep homeostasis.

    Vyazovskiy, Vladyslav V


    The longer we are awake, the deeper is our subsequent sleep. On the other hand, the shorter and more fragmented is our sleep, the more difficult it is for us to maintain wakefulness and stable cognitive performance the next day. This relationship between wakefulness and subsequent sleep becomes especially apparent after sleep deprivation or during chronic sleep restriction, which is experienced by millions of people in our society, as well as in multiple neurological, respiratory and other chronic diseases. Invariably, poor sleep leads to fatigue, sleepiness, marked cognitive deficits and impaired mood. The crucial question is what happens to the brain after a period of being awake or asleep, and where in the brain and why do these changes occur. This review summarizes information about neurophysiological substrates of sleep homeostatic processes at the cellular and network levels. It is suggested that sensory, behavioral and cognitive deficits after sleep deprivation resulting from the imbalance between local and global neuronal interactions can be reversed only by physiological sleep.

  20. Effects of bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells on the axonal outgrowth through activation of PI3K/AKT signaling in primary cortical neurons followed oxygen-glucose deprivation injury.

    Yong Liu

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Transplantation with bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs improves the survival of neurons and axonal outgrowth after stroke remains undetermined. Here, we investigated whether PI3K/AKT signaling pathway is involved in these therapeutic effects of BMSCs. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: (1 BMSCs and cortical neurons were derived from Sprague-Dawley rats. The injured neurons were induced by Oxygen-Glucose Deprivation (OGD, and then were respectively co-cultured for 48 hours with BMSCs at different densities (5×10(3, 5×10(5/ml in transwell co-culture system. The average length of axon and expression of GAP-43 were examined to assess the effect of BMSCs on axonal outgrowth after the damage of neurons induced by OGD. (2 The injured neurons were cultured with a conditioned medium (CM of BMSCs cultured for 24 hours in neurobasal medium. During the process, we further identified whether PI3K/AKT signaling pathway is involved through the adjunction of LY294002 (a specific phosphatidylinositide-3-kinase (PI3K inhibitor. Two hours later, the expression of pAKT (phosphorylated AKT and AKT were analyzed by Western blotting. The length of axons, the expression of GAP-43 and the survival of neurons were measured at 48 hours. RESULTS: Both BMSCs and CM from BMSCs inreased the axonal length and GAP-43 expression in OGD-injured cortical neurons. There was no difference between the effects of BMSCs of 5×10(5/ml and of 5×10(3/ml on axonal outgrowth. Expression of pAKT enhanced significantly at 2 hours and the neuron survival increased at 48 hours after the injured neurons cultured with the CM, respectively. These effects of CM were prevented by inhibitor LY294002. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: BMSCs promote axonal outgrowth and the survival of neurons against the damage from OGD in vitro by the paracrine effects through PI3K/AKT signaling pathway.

  1. Necdin regulates p53 acetylation via Sirtuin1 to modulate DNA damage response in cortical neurons.

    Hasegawa, Koichi; Yoshikawa, Kazuaki


    Sirtuin1 (Sirt1), a mammalian homolog of yeast Sir2, deacetylates the tumor suppressor protein p53 and attenuates p53-mediated cell death. Necdin, a p53-interacting protein expressed predominantly in postmitotic neurons, is a melanoma antigen family protein that promotes neuronal differentiation and survival. In mammals, the necdin gene (Ndn) is maternally imprinted, and mutant mice carrying mutated paternal Ndn show abnormalities of neuronal development. Here we report that necdin regulates the acetylation status of p53 via Sirt1 to suppress p53-dependent apoptosis in postmitotic neurons. Double-immunostaining analysis demonstrated that necdin colocalizes with Sirt1 in postmitotic neurons of mouse embryonic forebrain in vivo. Coimmunoprecipitation and in vitro binding analyses revealed that necdin interacts with both p53 and Sirt1 to potentiate Sirt1-mediated p53 deacetylation by facilitating their association. Primary cortical neurons prepared from paternal Ndn-deficient mice have high p53 acetylation levels and are sensitive to the DNA-damaging compounds camptothecin and hydrogen peroxide. Moreover, DNA transfection per se increases p53 acetylation and apoptosis in paternal Ndn-deficient neurons, whereas small interfering RNA-mediated p53 knockdown completely blocks these changes. However, Sirt1 knockdown increases both acetylated p53 level and apoptosis in wild-type neurons but fails to affect them in paternal Ndn-deficient neurons. In organotypic forebrain slice cultures treated with hydrogen peroxide, p53 is accumulated and colocalized with necdin and Sirt1 in cortical neurons. These results suggest that necdin downregulates p53 acetylation levels by forming a stable complex with p53 and Sirt1 to protect neurons from DNA damage-induced apoptosis.

  2. Modulation of specific sensory cortical areas by segregated basal forebrain cholinergic neurons demonstrated by neuronal tracing and optogenetic stimulation in mice

    Irene eChaves-Coira


    Full Text Available Neocortical cholinergic activity plays a fundamental role in sensory processing and cognitive functions. Previous results have suggested a refined anatomical and functional topographical organization of basal forebrain (BF projections that may control cortical sensory processing in a specific manner. We have used retrograde anatomical procedures to demonstrate the existence of specific neuronal groups in the BF involved in the control of specific sensory cortices. Fluoro-gold and Fast Blue fluorescent retrograde tracers were deposited into the primary somatosensory (S1 and primary auditory (A1 cortices in mice. Our results revealed that the BF is a heterogeneous area in which neurons projecting to different cortical areas are segregated into different neuronal groups. Most of the neurons located in the horizontal limb of the diagonal band of Broca (HDB projected to the S1 cortex, indicating that this area is specialized in the sensory processing of tactile stimuli. However, the nucleus basalis magnocellularis (B nucleus shows a similar number of cells projecting to the S1 as to the A1 cortices. In addition, we analyzed the cholinergic effects on the S1 and A1 cortical sensory responses by optogenetic stimulation of the BF neurons in urethane-anesthetized transgenic mice. We used transgenic mice expressing the light-activated cation channel, channelrhodopsin-2, tagged with a fluorescent protein (ChR2-YFP under the control of the choline-acetyl transferase promoter (ChAT. Cortical evoked potentials were induced by whisker deflections or by auditory clicks. According to the anatomical results, optogenetic HDB stimulation induced more extensive facilitation of tactile evoked potentials in S1 than auditory evoked potentials in A1, while optogenetic stimulation of the B nucleus facilitated either tactile or auditory evoked potentials equally. Consequently, our results suggest that cholinergic projections to the cortex are organized into segregated

  3. Modulation of Specific Sensory Cortical Areas by Segregated Basal Forebrain Cholinergic Neurons Demonstrated by Neuronal Tracing and Optogenetic Stimulation in Mice

    Chaves-Coira, Irene; Barros-Zulaica, Natali; Rodrigo-Angulo, Margarita; Núñez, Ángel


    Neocortical cholinergic activity plays a fundamental role in sensory processing and cognitive functions. Previous results have suggested a refined anatomical and functional topographical organization of basal forebrain (BF) projections that may control cortical sensory processing in a specific manner. We have used retrograde anatomical procedures to demonstrate the existence of specific neuronal groups in the BF involved in the control of specific sensory cortices. Fluoro-Gold (FlGo) and Fast Blue (FB) fluorescent retrograde tracers were deposited into the primary somatosensory (S1) and primary auditory (A1) cortices in mice. Our results revealed that the BF is a heterogeneous area in which neurons projecting to different cortical areas are segregated into different neuronal groups. Most of the neurons located in the horizontal limb of the diagonal band of Broca (HDB) projected to the S1 cortex, indicating that this area is specialized in the sensory processing of tactile stimuli. However, the nucleus basalis magnocellularis (B) nucleus shows a similar number of cells projecting to the S1 as to the A1 cortices. In addition, we analyzed the cholinergic effects on the S1 and A1 cortical sensory responses by optogenetic stimulation of the BF neurons in urethane-anesthetized transgenic mice. We used transgenic mice expressing the light-activated cation channel, channelrhodopsin-2, tagged with a fluorescent protein (ChR2-YFP) under the control of the choline-acetyl transferase promoter (ChAT). Cortical evoked potentials were induced by whisker deflections or by auditory clicks. According to the anatomical results, optogenetic HDB stimulation induced more extensive facilitation of tactile evoked potentials in S1 than auditory evoked potentials in A1, while optogenetic stimulation of the B nucleus facilitated either tactile or auditory evoked potentials equally. Consequently, our results suggest that cholinergic projections to the cortex are organized into segregated

  4. Locus coeruleus stimulation recruits a broad cortical neuronal network and increases cortical perfusion.

    Toussay, Xavier; Basu, Kaustuv; Lacoste, Baptiste; Hamel, Edith


    The locus coeruleus (LC), the main source of brain noradrenalin (NA), modulates cortical activity, cerebral blood flow (CBF), glucose metabolism, and blood-brain barrier permeability. However, the role of the LC-NA system in the regulation of cortical CBF has remained elusive. This rat study shows that similar proportions (∼20%) of cortical pyramidal cells and GABA interneurons are contacted by LC-NA afferents on their cell soma or proximal dendrites. LC stimulation induced ipsilateral activation (c-Fos upregulation) of pyramidal cells and of a larger proportion (>36%) of interneurons that colocalize parvalbumin, somatostatin, or nitric oxide synthase compared with pyramidal cells expressing cyclooxygenase-2 (22%, p interneurons (16%, p BK, -52%, p < 0.05), and inward-rectifier (Kir, -40%, p < 0.05) K+ channels primarily impaired the hyperemic response. The data demonstrate that LC stimulation recruits a broad network of cortical excitatory and inhibitory neurons resulting in increased cortical activity and that K+ fluxes and EET signaling mediate a large part of the hemodynamic response.

  5. Dense neuron clustering explains connectivity statistics in cortical microcircuits.

    Vladimir V Klinshov

    Full Text Available Local cortical circuits appear highly non-random, but the underlying connectivity rule remains elusive. Here, we analyze experimental data observed in layer 5 of rat neocortex and suggest a model for connectivity from which emerge essential observed non-random features of both wiring and weighting. These features include lognormal distributions of synaptic connection strength, anatomical clustering, and strong correlations between clustering and connection strength. Our model predicts that cortical microcircuits contain large groups of densely connected neurons which we call clusters. We show that such a cluster contains about one fifth of all excitatory neurons of a circuit which are very densely connected with stronger than average synapses. We demonstrate that such clustering plays an important role in the network dynamics, namely, it creates bistable neural spiking in small cortical circuits. Furthermore, introducing local clustering in large-scale networks leads to the emergence of various patterns of persistent local activity in an ongoing network activity. Thus, our results may bridge a gap between anatomical structure and persistent activity observed during working memory and other cognitive processes.

  6. Human Temporal Cortical Single Neuron Activity during Language: A Review

    George A. Ojemann


    Full Text Available Findings from recordings of human temporal cortical single neuron activity during several measures of language, including object naming and word reading are reviewed and related to changes in activity in the same neurons during recent verbal memory and verbal associative learning measures, in studies conducted during awake neurosurgery for the treatment of epilepsy. The proportion of neurons changing activity with language tasks was similar in either hemisphere. Dominant hemisphere activity was characterized by relative inhibition, some of which occurred during overt speech, possibly to block perception of one’s own voice. However, the majority seems to represent a dynamic network becoming active with verbal memory encoding and especially verbal learning, but inhibited during performance of overlearned language tasks. Individual neurons are involved in different networks for different aspects of language, including naming or reading and naming in different languages. The majority of the changes in activity were tonic sustained shifts in firing. Patterned phasic activity for specific language items was very infrequently recorded. Human single neuron recordings provide a unique perspective on the biologic substrate for language, for these findings are in contrast to many of the findings from other techniques for investigating this.

  7. Leading role of thalamic over cortical neurons during postinhibitory rebound excitation

    Grenier, F.; Timofeev, I.; Steriade, M.


    The postinhibitory rebound excitation is an intrinsic property of thalamic and cortical neurons that is implicated in a variety of normal and abnormal operations of neuronal networks, such as slow or fast brain rhythms during different states of vigilance as well as seizures. We used dual simultaneous intracellular recordings of thalamocortical neurons from the ventrolateral nucleus and neurons from the motor cortex, together with thalamic and cortical field potentials, to investigate the temporal relations between thalamic and cortical events during the rebound excitation that follows prolonged periods of stimulus-induced inhibition. Invariably, the rebound spike-bursts in thalamocortical cells occurred before the rebound depolarization in cortical neurons and preceded the peak of the depth-negative, rebound field potential in cortical areas. Also, the inhibitory-rebound sequences were more pronounced and prolonged in cortical neurons when elicited by thalamic stimuli, compared with cortical stimuli. The role of thalamocortical loops in the rebound excitation of cortical neurons was shown further by the absence of rebound activity in isolated cortical slabs. However, whereas thalamocortical neurons remained hyperpolarized after rebound excitation, because of the prolonged spike-bursts in inhibitory thalamic reticular neurons, the rebound depolarization in cortical neurons was prolonged, suggesting the role of intracortical excitatory circuits in this sustained activity. The role of intrathalamic events in triggering rebound cortical activity should be taken into consideration when analyzing information processes at the cortical level; at each step, corticothalamic volleys can set into action thalamic inhibitory neurons, leading to rebound spike-bursts that are transferred back to the cortex, thus modifying cortical activities. PMID:9811903

  8. Quantification of Filamentous Actin (F-actin) Puncta in Rat Cortical Neurons.

    Li, Hailong; Aksenova, Marina; Bertrand, Sarah J; Mactutus, Charles F; Booze, Rosemarie


    Filamentous actin protein (F-actin) plays a major role in spinogenesis, synaptic plasticity, and synaptic stability. Changes in dendritic F-actin rich structures suggest alterations in synaptic integrity and connectivity. Here we provide a detailed protocol for culturing primary rat cortical neurons, Phalloidin staining for F-actin puncta, and subsequent quantification techniques. First, the frontal cortex of E18 rat embryos are dissociated into low-density cell culture, then the neurons grown in vitro for at least 12-14 days. Following experimental treatment, the cortical neurons are stained with AlexaFluor 488 Phalloidin (to label the dendritic F-actin puncta) and microtubule-associated protein 2 (MAP2; to validate the neuronal cells and dendritic integrity). Finally, specialized software is used to analyze and quantify randomly selected neuronal dendrites. F-actin rich structures are identified on second order dendritic branches (length range 25-75 µm) with continuous MAP2 immunofluorescence. The protocol presented here will be a useful method for investigating changes in dendritic synapse structures subsequent to experimental treatments.

  9. Probabilistic identification of cerebellar cortical neurones across species.

    Gert Van Dijck

    Full Text Available Despite our fine-grain anatomical knowledge of the cerebellar cortex, electrophysiological studies of circuit information processing over the last fifty years have been hampered by the difficulty of reliably assigning signals to identified cell types. We approached this problem by assessing the spontaneous activity signatures of identified cerebellar cortical neurones. A range of statistics describing firing frequency and irregularity were then used, individually and in combination, to build Gaussian Process Classifiers (GPC leading to a probabilistic classification of each neurone type and the computation of equi-probable decision boundaries between cell classes. Firing frequency statistics were useful for separating Purkinje cells from granular layer units, whilst firing irregularity measures proved most useful for distinguishing cells within granular layer cell classes. Considered as single statistics, we achieved classification accuracies of 72.5% and 92.7% for granular layer and molecular layer units respectively. Combining statistics to form twin-variate GPC models substantially improved classification accuracies with the combination of mean spike frequency and log-interval entropy offering classification accuracies of 92.7% and 99.2% for our molecular and granular layer models, respectively. A cross-species comparison was performed, using data drawn from anaesthetised mice and decerebrate cats, where our models offered 80% and 100% classification accuracy. We then used our models to assess non-identified data from awake monkeys and rabbits in order to highlight subsets of neurones with the greatest degree of similarity to identified cell classes. In this way, our GPC-based approach for tentatively identifying neurones from their spontaneous activity signatures, in the absence of an established ground-truth, nonetheless affords the experimenter a statistically robust means of grouping cells with properties matching known cell classes. Our

  10. Axon guidance of rat cortical neurons by microcontact printed gradients.

    Fricke, Rita; Zentis, Peter D; Rajappa, Lionel T; Hofmann, Boris; Banzet, Marko; Offenhäusser, Andreas; Meffert, Simone H


    Substrate-bound gradients expressed in numerous spatio-temporal patterns play a crucial role during the development of complex neural circuits. A deeper understanding of the axon guidance mechanism is provided by studying the effect of a defined substrate-bound cue on a confined neural network. In this study, we constructed a discontinuous substrate-bound gradient to control neuronal cell position, the path of neurite growth, and axon directionality. A variety of gradient patterns, with slight changes in slope, width, and length were designed and fabricated by microcontact printing using laminin/poly-l-lysine (PLL) or PLL alone. The gradients were tested for neurite growth and their impact on axon guidance of embryonic rat cortical neurons. The neurite length was determined and the axon was evaluated by Tau-1 immunostaining. We found that the microgradients of laminin/PLL and PLL directed neurons' adhesion, differentially controlled the neurite growth, and guided up to 84% of the axons. The effect of the protein micropattern on axon guidance and neurite growth depended on the protein and geometric parameters used. Our approach proved to be very successful in guiding axons of single multipolar neurons with very high efficiency. It could thereby be useful to engineer defined neural networks for analyzing signal processing of functional circuits, as well as to unravel fundamental questions of the axon guidance mechanism.

  11. Order-based representation in random networks of cortical neurons.

    Goded Shahaf


    Full Text Available The wide range of time scales involved in neural excitability and synaptic transmission might lead to ongoing change in the temporal structure of responses to recurring stimulus presentations on a trial-to-trial basis. This is probably the most severe biophysical constraint on putative time-based primitives of stimulus representation in neuronal networks. Here we show that in spontaneously developing large-scale random networks of cortical neurons in vitro the order in which neurons are recruited following each stimulus is a naturally emerging representation primitive that is invariant to significant temporal changes in spike times. With a relatively small number of randomly sampled neurons, the information about stimulus position is fully retrievable from the recruitment order. The effective connectivity that makes order-based representation invariant to time warping is characterized by the existence of stations through which activity is required to pass in order to propagate further into the network. This study uncovers a simple invariant in a noisy biological network in vitro; its applicability under in vivo constraints remains to be seen.

  12. Neurons in Primary Motor Cortex Engaged During Action Observation

    Dushanova, Juliana; Donoghue, John


    Neurons in higher cortical areas appear to become active during action observation, either by mirroring observed actions (termed mirror neurons) or by eliciting mental rehearsal of observed motor acts. We report the existence of neurons in primary motor cortex (MI) responding to viewed actions, an area generally considered to initiate and guide movement performance. Multielectrode recordings in monkeys performing or observing a well-learned step tracking task showed that approximately half of MI neurons, active when monkeys performed the task, were also active when they observed the action being performed by a human. These ‘view’ neurons were spatially intermingled with ‘do’ neurons, active only during movement performance. Simultaneously recorded, ‘view’ neurons comprised two groups: ∼38% retained the same preferred direction (PD) and timing during performance and viewing, while the remainder (62%) changed their PDs and time lag during viewing compared with performance. Nevertheless, population activity during viewing was sufficient to predict the direction and trajectory of viewed movements as action unfolded, although less accurately than during performance. ‘View’ neurons became less active and contained poorer representations of action when viewing only sub-components of the task. MI ‘view’ neurons thus appear to reflect the aspects of a learned movement when observed in others and form part of a broadly engaged set of cortical areas routinely responding to learned behaviors. These findings suggest that viewing a learned action elicits replay of aspects of MI activity needed to perform the observed action and could additionally reflect processing related to understanding, learning or mentally rehearsing action. PMID:20074212

  13. Adenosine A1 receptor-mediated transactivation of the EGF receptor produces a neuroprotective effect on cortical neurons in vitro

    Ke-qiang XIE; Li-min ZHANG; Yan CAO; Jun ZHU; Lin-yin FENG


    Aim:To understand the mechanism of the transactivation of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) mediated by the adenosine A1 receptor (A1R).Methods:Primary cultured rat cortical neurons subjected to oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) and HEK293/A1R cells were treated with the A1R-specific agonist N6-cyclopentyladenosine (CPA).Phospho-EGFR,Akt,and ERK1/2 were observed by Western blot.An interaction between EGFR and AIR was detected using immunoprecipitation and immunocytochemistry.Results:The A1R agonist CPA causes protein kinase B (Akt) activation and protects primary cortical neurons from oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD) insult.A1R and EGFR co-localize in the membranes of neurons and form an immunocomplex.A1R stimulation induces significant EGFR phosphorylation via a P13K and Src kinase signaling pathway;this stimulation provides a neuroprotective effect in cortical neurons.CPA leads to sustained phosphorylation of extracellularly regulated kinases 1 and 2 (ERK1/2) in cortical neurons,but only to transient phosphorylation in HEK 293/A1R cells.The response to the AtR agonist is mediated primarily through EGFR trans-activation that is dependent on pertussis toxin (PTX)-sensitive G1 protein and metalloproteases in HEK 293/A1R.Conclusion:A1R-mediated EGFR transactivation confers a neuroprotective effect in primary cortical neurons.P13 kinase and Src kinase play pivotal roles in this response.

  14. Ibuprofen augments bilirubin toxicity in rat cortical neuronal culture.

    Berns, Monika; Toennessen, Margit; Koehne, Petra; Altmann, Rodica; Obladen, Michael


    Premature infants are at risk for bilirubin-associated brain damage. In cell cultures bilirubin causes neuronal apoptosis and necrosis. Ibuprofen is used to close the ductus arteriosus, and is often given when hyperbilirubinemia is at its maximum. Ibuprofen is known to interfere with bilirubin-albumin binding. We hypothesized that bilirubin toxicity to cultured rat embryonic cortical neurons is augmented by coincubation with ibuprofen. Incubation with ibuprofen above a concentration of 125 microg/mL reduced cell viability, measured by methylthiazole tetrazolium reduction, to 68% of controls (p < 0.05). Lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) release increased from 29 to 38% (p < 0.01). The vehicle solution did not affect cell viability. Coincubation with 10 microM unconjugated bilirubin (UCB)/human serum albumin in a molar ratio of 3:1 and 250 microg/mL ibuprofen caused additional loss of cell viability and increased LDH release (p < 0.01), DNA fragmentation, and activated caspase-3. Preincubation with the pan-caspase inhibitor z-val-ala-asp-fluoromethyl ketone abolished ibuprofen- and UCB-induced DNA fragmentation. The study demonstrates that bilirubin in low concentration of 10 microM reduces neuron viability and ibuprofen increases this effect. Apoptosis is the underlying cell death mechanism.

  15. Clinacanthus nutans Protects Cortical Neurons Against Hypoxia-Induced Toxicity by Downregulating HDAC1/6.

    Tsai, Hsin-Da; Wu, Jui-Sheng; Kao, Mei-Han; Chen, Jin-Jer; Sun, Grace Y; Ong, Wei-Yi; Lin, Teng-Nan


    Many population-based epidemiological studies have unveiled an inverse correlation between intake of herbal plants and incidence of stroke. C. nutans is a traditional herbal medicine widely used for snake bite, viral infection and cancer in Asian countries. However, its role in protecting stroke damage remains to be studied. Despite of growing evidence to support epigenetic regulation in the pathogenesis and recovery of stroke, a clear understanding of the underlying molecular mechanisms is still lacking. In the present study, primary cortical neurons were subjected to in vitro oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD)-reoxygenation and hypoxic neuronal death was used to investigate the interaction between C. nutans and histone deacetylases (HDACs). Using pharmacological agents (HDAC inhibitor/activator), loss-of-function (HDAC siRNA) and gain-of-function (HDAC plasmid) approaches, we demonstrated an early induction of HDAC1/2/3/8 and HDAC6 in neurons after OGD insult. C. nutans extract selectively inhibited HDAC1 and HDAC6 expression and attenuated neuronal death. Results of reporter analysis further revealed that C. nutans suppressed HDAC1 and HDAC6 transcription. Besides ameliorating neuronal death, C. nutans also protected astrocytes and endothelial cells from hypoxic-induced cell death. In summary, results support ability for C. nutans to suppress post-hypoxic HDACs activation and mitigate against OGD-induced neuronal death. This study further opens a new avenue for the use of herbal medicines to regulate epigenetic control of brain injury.

  16. Unimodal primary sensory cortices are directly connected by long-range horizontal projections in the rat sensory cortex

    Jimmy eStehberg


    Full Text Available Research based on functional imaging and neuronal recordings in the barrel cortex subdivision of primary somatosensory cortex (SI of the adult rat has revealed novel aspects of structure-function relationships in this cortex. Specifically, it has demonstrated that single whisker stimulation evokes subthreshold neuronal activity that spreads symmetrically within gray matter from the appropriate barrel area, crosses cytoarchitectural borders of SI and reaches deeply into other unimodal primary cortices such as primary auditory (AI and primary visual (VI. It was further demonstrated that this spread is supported by a spatially matching underlying diffuse network of border-crossing, long-range projections that could also reach deeply into AI and VI. Here we seek to determine whether such a network of border-crossing, long-range projections is unique to barrel cortex or characterizes also other primary, unimodal sensory cortices and therefore could directly connect them. Using anterograde (BDA and retrograde (CTb tract-tracing techniques, we demonstrate that such diffuse horizontal networks directly and mutually connect VI, AI and SI. These findings suggest that diffuse, border-crossing axonal projections connecting directly primary cortices are an important organizational motif common to all major primary sensory cortices in the rat. Potential implications of these findings for topics including cortical structure-function relationships, multisensory integration, functional imaging and cortical parcellation are discussed.

  17. Properties of bilateral spinocerebellar activation of cerebellar cortical neurons

    Pontus eGeborek


    Full Text Available We aimed to explore the cerebellar cortical inputs from two spinocerebellar pathways, the spinal border cell-component of the ventral spinocerebellar tract (SBC-VSCT and the dorsal spinocerebellar tract (DSCT, respectively, in the sublobule C1 of the cerebellar posterior lobe. The two pathways were activated by electrical stimulation of the contralateral lateral funiculus (coLF and the ipsilateral LF (iLF at lower thoracic levels. Most granule cells in sublobule C1 did not respond at all but part of the granule cell population displayed high-intensity responses to either coLF or iLF stimulation. As a rule, Golgi cells and Purkinje cell simple spikes responded to input from both LFs, although Golgi cells could be more selective. In addition, a small population of granule cells responded to input from both the coLF and the iLF. However, in these cases, similarities in the temporal topography and magnitude of the responses suggested that the same axons were stimulated from the two LFs, i.e. that the axons of individual spinocerebellar neurons could be present in both funiculi. This was also confirmed for a population of spinal neurons located within known locations of SBC-VSCT neurons and dorsal horn DSCT neurons. We conclude that bilateral spinocerebellar responses can occur in cerebellar granule cells, but the VSCT and DSCT systems that provide the input can also be organized bilaterally. The implications for the traditional functional separation of VSCT and DSCT systems and the issue whether granule cells primarily integrate functionally similar information or not are discussed.

  18. Cross-modal synaptic plasticity in adult primary sensory cortices.

    Lee, Hey-Kyoung; Whitt, Jessica L


    Sensory loss leads to widespread adaptation of brain circuits to allow an organism to navigate its environment with its remaining senses, which is broadly referred to as cross-modal plasticity. Such adaptation can be observed even in the primary sensory cortices, and falls into two distinct categories: recruitment of the deprived sensory cortex for processing the remaining senses, which we term 'cross-modal recruitment', and experience-dependent refinement of the spared sensory cortices referred to as 'compensatory plasticity.' Here we will review recent studies demonstrating that cortical adaptation to sensory loss involves LTP/LTD and homeostatic synaptic plasticity. Cross-modal synaptic plasticity is observed in adults, hence cross-modal sensory deprivation may be an effective way to promote plasticity in adult primary sensory cortices.

  19. Primary visual cortical remapping in patients with inherited peripheral retinal degeneration.

    Ferreira, Sónia; Pereira, Andreia Carvalho; Quendera, Bruno; Reis, Aldina; Silva, Eduardo Duarte; Castelo-Branco, Miguel


    Human studies addressing the long-term effects of peripheral retinal degeneration on visual cortical function and structure are scarce. Here we investigated this question in patients with Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP), a genetic condition leading to peripheral visual degeneration. We acquired functional and anatomical magnetic resonance data from thirteen patients with different levels of visual loss and twenty-two healthy participants to study primary (V1) visual cortical retinotopic remapping and cortical thickness. We identified systematic visual field remapping in the absence of structural changes in the primary visual cortex of RP patients. Remapping consisted in a retinotopic eccentricity shift of central retinal inputs to more peripheral locations in V1. Importantly, this was associated with changes in visual experience, as assessed by the extent of the visual loss, with more constricted visual fields resulting in larger remapping. This pattern of remapping is consistent with expansion or shifting of neuronal receptive fields into the cortical regions with reduced retinal input. These data provide evidence for functional changes in V1 that are dependent on the magnitude of peripheral visual loss in RP, which may be explained by rapid cortical adaptation mechanisms or long-term cortical reorganization. This study highlights the importance of analyzing the retinal determinants of brain functional and structural alterations for future visual restoration approaches.

  20. Immediate Effects of Repetitive Magnetic Stimulation on Single Cortical Pyramidal Neurons

    Banerjee, Jineta; Sorrell, Mary E.; Celnik, Pablo A.; Pelled, Galit


    Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (rTMS) has been successfully used as a non-invasive therapeutic intervention for several neurological disorders in the clinic as well as an investigative tool for basic neuroscience. rTMS has been shown to induce long-term changes in neuronal circuits in vivo. Such long-term effects of rTMS have been investigated using behavioral, imaging, electrophysiological, and molecular approaches, but there is limited understanding of the immediate effects of TMS on neurons. We investigated the immediate effects of high frequency (20 Hz) rTMS on the activity of cortical neurons in an effort to understand the underlying cellular mechanisms activated by rTMS. We used whole-cell patch-clamp recordings in acute rat brain slices and calcium imaging of cultured primary neurons to examine changes in neuronal activity and intracellular calcium respectively. Our results indicate that each TMS pulse caused an immediate and transient activation of voltage gated sodium channels (9.6 ± 1.8 nA at -45 mV, p value rTMS stimulation induced action potentials in a subpopulation of neurons, and significantly increased the steady state current of the neurons at near threshold voltages (at -45 mV: before TMS: I = 130 ± 17 pA, during TMS: I = 215 ± 23 pA, p value = 0.001). rTMS stimulation also led to a delayed increase in intracellular calcium (153.88 ± 61.94% increase from baseline). These results show that rTMS has an immediate and cumulative effect on neuronal activity and intracellular calcium levels, and suggest that rTMS may enhance neuronal responses when combined with an additional motor, sensory or cognitive stimulus. Thus, these results could be translated to optimize rTMS protocols for clinical as well as basic science applications. PMID:28114421

  1. Schisandrin B protects rat cortical neurons against Abeta1-42-induced neurotoxicity.

    Wang, Bin; Wang, Xue-Mei


    In the present study, we investigated the neuroprotective effects of schisandrin B on amyloid-beta1-42-induced toxicity and its potential mechanisms in rat cortical neuron cells. Amyloid beta1-42 significantly reduced cell viability and increased apoptosis. Pretreatment with schisandrin B prior to amyloid-beta1-42 exposure significantly elevated cell viability and reduced apoptosis. The anti-apoptotic effect of schisandrin B in rat cortical neurons was mediated by up-regulation of the anti-apoptotic protein Bcl-2 and down-regulation of the pro-apoptotic protein Bax. Schisandrin B also reduced the release of mitochondrial cytochrome c into cytosol and decreased caspase-9 and caspase-3 activities. Furthermore, schisandrin B increased activities of anti-oxidant reduced glutathione and decreased production of oxidative glutathione. Taken together, these results suggest that schisandrin B protected primary cultures of rat cortical cells against amyloid-beta1-42-induced neurotoxicity through anti-apoptosis involved in a mitochondria-mediated pathway and anti-oxidant action. Schisandrin B may represent a potential treatment strategy for Alzheimer's disease.

  2. Loss of MeCP2 From Forebrain Excitatory Neurons Leads to Cortical Hyperexcitation and Seizures

    Zhang, Wen; Peterson, Matthew; Beyer, Barbara; Frankel, Wayne N.


    Mutations of MECP2 cause Rett syndrome (RTT), a neurodevelopmental disorder leading to loss of motor and cognitive functions, impaired social interactions, and seizure at young ages. Defects of neuronal circuit development and function are thought to be responsible for the symptoms of RTT. The majority of RTT patients show recurrent seizures, indicating that neuronal hyperexcitation is a common feature of RTT. However, mechanisms underlying hyperexcitation in RTT are poorly understood. Here we show that deletion of Mecp2 from cortical excitatory neurons but not forebrain inhibitory neurons in the mouse leads to spontaneous seizures. Selective deletion of Mecp2 from excitatory but not inhibitory neurons in the forebrain reduces GABAergic transmission in layer 5 pyramidal neurons in the prefrontal and somatosensory cortices. Loss of MeCP2 from cortical excitatory neurons reduces the number of GABAergic synapses in the cortex, and enhances the excitability of layer 5 pyramidal neurons. Using single-cell deletion of Mecp2 in layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons, we show that GABAergic transmission is reduced in neurons without MeCP2, but is normal in neighboring neurons with MeCP2. Together, these results suggest that MeCP2 in cortical excitatory neurons plays a critical role in the regulation of GABAergic transmission and cortical excitability. PMID:24523563

  3. Human temporal cortical single neuron activity during working memory maintenance.

    Zamora, Leona; Corina, David; Ojemann, George


    The Working Memory model of human memory, first introduced by Baddeley and Hitch (1974), has been one of the most influential psychological constructs in cognitive psychology and human neuroscience. However the neuronal correlates of core components of this model have yet to be fully elucidated. Here we present data from two studies where human temporal cortical single neuron activity was recorded during tasks differentially affecting the maintenance component of verbal working memory. In Study One we vary the presence or absence of distracting items for the entire period of memory storage. In Study Two we vary the duration of storage so that distractors filled all, or only one-third of the time the memory was stored. Extracellular single neuron recordings were obtained from 36 subjects undergoing awake temporal lobe resections for epilepsy, 25 in Study one, 11 in Study two. Recordings were obtained from a total of 166 lateral temporal cortex neurons during performance of one of these two tasks, 86 study one, 80 study two. Significant changes in activity with distractor manipulation were present in 74 of these neurons (45%), 38 Study one, 36 Study two. In 48 (65%) of those there was increased activity during the period when distracting items were absent, 26 Study One, 22 Study Two. The magnitude of this increase was greater for Study One, 47.6%, than Study Two, 8.1%, paralleling the reduction in memory errors in the absence of distracters, for Study One of 70.3%, Study Two 26.3% These findings establish that human lateral temporal cortex is part of the neural system for working memory, with activity during maintenance of that memory that parallels performance, suggesting it represents active rehearsal. In 31 of these neurons (65%) this activity was an extension of that during working memory encoding that differed significantly from the neural processes recorded during overt and silent language tasks without a recent memory component, 17 Study one, 14 Study two

  4. Exogenous Reelin modifies the migratory behavior of neurons depending on cortical location.

    Britto, Joanne M; Tait, Karen J; Lee, Ean Phing; Gamble, Robin S; Hattori, Mitsuharu; Tan, Seong-Seng


    Malformations of cortical development can arise when projection neurons generated in the germinal zones fail to migrate properly into the cortical plate. This process is critically dependent on the Reelin glycoprotein, which when absent leads to an inversion of cortical layers and blurring of borders. Reelin has other functions including supporting neuron migration and maintaining their trajectories; however, the precise role on glial fiber-dependent or -independent migration of neurons remains controversial. In this study, we wish to test the hypothesis that migrating cortical neurons at different levels of the cortical wall have differential responses to Reelin. We exposed neurons migrating across the cortical wall to exogenous Reelin and monitored their migratory behavior using time-lapse imaging. Our results show that, in the germinal zones, exogenous Reelin retarded neuron migration and altered their trajectories. This behavior is in contrast to the response of neurons located in the intermediate zone (IZ), possibly because Reelin receptors are not expressed in this zone. In the reeler cortex, Reelin receptors are expressed in the IZ and exposure to exogenous Reelin was able to rescue the migratory defect. These studies demonstrate that migrating neurons have nonequivalent responses to Reelin depending on their location within the cortical wall. © The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail:

  5. Responses to Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid of Rat Visual Cortical Neurons in Tissue Slices


    Neurol. 234: 242-263. Peters, A. and Proskauer, c. C. (1980) Synaptic relationships between a multipolar stellate cell and a pyramidal neuron in rat...APR 1986 2. REPORT TYPE N/A 3. DATES COVERED - 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Responses to Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid of Rat Visual Cortical Neurons in...AIR FORCE MEDICAL CENTER Title of Thesis: Responses to Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid of Rat Visual Cortical Neurons in Tissue Slices Name of Candidate

  6. IL-10 Protects Neurites in Oxygen-Glucose-Deprived Cortical Neurons through the PI3K/Akt Pathway.

    Longzai Lin

    Full Text Available IL-10, as a cytokine, has an anti-inflammatory cascade following various injuries, but it remains blurred whether IL-10 protects neurites of cortical neurons after oxygen-glucose deprivation injury. Here, we reported that IL-10, in a concentration-dependent manner, reduced neuronal apoptosis and increased neuronal survival in oxygen-glucose-deprived primary cortical neurons, producing an optimal protective effect at 20ng/ml. After staining NF-H and GAP-43, we found that IL-10 significantly protected neurites in terms of axon length and dendrite number by confocal microscopy. Furthermore, it induced the phosphorylation of AKT, suppressed the activation of caspase-3, and up-regulated the protein expression of GAP-43. In contrast, LY294002, a specific inhibitor of PI3K/AKT, reduced the level of AKT phosphorylation and GAP-43 expression, increased active caspase-3 expression and thus significantly weakened IL-10-mediated protective effect in the OGD-induced injury model. IL-10NA, the IL-10 neutralizing antibody, reduced the level of p-PI3K phosphorylation and increased the expression of active caspase-3. These findings suggest that IL-10 provides neuroprotective effects by protecting neurites through PI3K/AKT signaling pathway in oxygen-glucose-deprived primary cortical neurons.

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

    Anderson, B; Harvey, T


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

  8. Near infrared radiation rescues mitochondrial dysfunction in cortical neurons after oxygen-glucose deprivation.

    Yu, Zhanyang; Liu, Ning; Zhao, Jianhua; Li, Yadan; McCarthy, Thomas J; Tedford, Clark E; Lo, Eng H; Wang, Xiaoying


    Near infrared radiation (NIR) is known to penetrate and affect biological systems in multiple ways. Recently, a series of experimental studies suggested that low intensity NIR may protect neuronal cells against a wide range of insults that mimic diseases such as stroke, brain trauma and neurodegeneration. However, the potential molecular mechanisms of neuroprotection with NIR remain poorly defined. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that low intensity NIR may attenuate hypoxia/ischemia-induced mitochondrial dysfunction in neurons. Primary cortical mouse neuronal cultures were subjected to 4 h oxygen-glucose deprivation followed by reoxygenation for 2 h, neurons were then treated with a 2 min exposure to 810-nm NIR. Mitochondrial function markers including MTT reduction and mitochondria membrane potential were measured at 2 h after treatment. Neurotoxicity was quantified 20 h later. Our results showed that 4 h oxygen-glucose deprivation plus 20 h reoxygenation caused 33.8 ± 3.4 % of neuron death, while NIR exposure significantly reduced neuronal death to 23.6 ± 2.9 %. MTT reduction rate was reduced to 75.9 ± 2.7 % by oxygen-glucose deprivation compared to normoxic controls, but NIR exposure significantly rescued MTT reduction to 87.6 ± 4.5 %. Furthermore, after oxygen-glucose deprivation, mitochondria membrane potential was reduced to 48.9 ± 4.39 % of normoxic control, while NIR exposure significantly ameliorated this reduction to 89.6 ± 13.9 % of normoxic control. Finally, NIR significantly rescued OGD-induced ATP production decline at 20 min after NIR. These findings suggest that low intensity NIR can protect neurons against oxygen-glucose deprivation by rescuing mitochondrial function and restoring neuronal energetics.

  9. Cortical neuron loss in post-traumatic higher brain dysfunction using (123)I-iomazenil SPECT.

    Nakagawara, Jyoji; Kamiyama, Kenji; Takahashi, Masaaki; Nakamura, Hirohiko


    In patients with higher brain dysfunction (HBD) after mild traumatic brain injury (MTBI), diagnostic imaging of cortical neuron loss in the frontal lobes was studied using SPECT with (123)I-iomazenil (IMZ), as a radioligand for central benzodiazepine receptor (BZR). Statistical imaging analysis using three-dimensional stereotactic surface projections (3D-SSP) for (123)I-IMZ SPECT was performed in 17 patients. In all patients with HBD defined by neuropsychological tests, cortical neuron loss was indicated in the bilateral medial frontal lobes in 14 patients (83 %). A comparison between the group of 17 patients and the normal database demonstrated common areas of cortical neuron loss in the bilateral medial frontal lobes involving the medial frontal gyrus (MFG) and the anterior cingulate gyrus (ACG). In an assessment of cortical neuron loss in the frontal medial cortex using the stereotactic extraction estimation (SEE) method (level 3), significant cortical neuron loss was observed within bilateral MFG in 9 patients and unilateral MFG in 4, and bilateral ACG in 12 and unilateral ACG in 3. Fourteen patients showed significant cortical neuron loss in bilateral MFG or ACG. In patients with MTBI, HBD seemed to correlate with selective cortical neuron loss within the bilateral MFG or ACG where the responsible lesion could be. 3D-SSP and SEE level 3 analysis for (123)I-IMZ SPECT could be valuable for diagnostic imaging of HBD after MTBI.

  10. IgLON cell adhesion molecules are shed from the cell surface of cortical neurons to promote neuronal growth.

    Sanz, Ricardo; Ferraro, Gino B; Fournier, Alyson E


    Matrix metalloproteinases and a disintegrin and metalloproteinases are members of the zinc endopeptidases, which cleave components of the extracellular matrix as well as cell surface proteins resulting in degradation or release of biologically active fragments. Surface ectodomain shedding affects numerous biological processes, including survival, axon outgrowth, axon guidance, and synaptogenesis. In this study, we evaluated the role of metalloproteinases in regulating cortical neurite growth. We found that treatment of mature cortical neurons with pan-metalloproteinase inhibitors or with tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinase-3 reduced neurite outgrowth. Through mass spectrometry, we characterized the metalloproteinase-sensitive cell surface proteome of mature cortical neurons. Members of the IgLON family of glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored neural cell adhesion molecules were identified and validated as proteins that were shed from the surface of mature cortical neurons in a metalloproteinase-dependent manner. Introduction of two members of the IgLON family, neurotrimin and NEGR1, in early embryonic neurons was sufficient to confer sensitivity to metalloproteinase inhibitors in neurite outgrowth assays. Outgrowth experiments on immobilized IgLON proteins revealed a role for all IgLON family members in promoting neurite extension from cortical neurons. Together, our findings support a role for metalloproteinase-dependent shedding of IgLON family members in regulating neurite outgrowth from mature cortical neurons.

  11. IgLON Cell Adhesion Molecules Are Shed from the Cell Surface of Cortical Neurons to Promote Neuronal Growth*

    Sanz, Ricardo; Ferraro, Gino B.; Fournier, Alyson E.


    Matrix metalloproteinases and a disintegrin and metalloproteinases are members of the zinc endopeptidases, which cleave components of the extracellular matrix as well as cell surface proteins resulting in degradation or release of biologically active fragments. Surface ectodomain shedding affects numerous biological processes, including survival, axon outgrowth, axon guidance, and synaptogenesis. In this study, we evaluated the role of metalloproteinases in regulating cortical neurite growth. We found that treatment of mature cortical neurons with pan-metalloproteinase inhibitors or with tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinase-3 reduced neurite outgrowth. Through mass spectrometry, we characterized the metalloproteinase-sensitive cell surface proteome of mature cortical neurons. Members of the IgLON family of glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored neural cell adhesion molecules were identified and validated as proteins that were shed from the surface of mature cortical neurons in a metalloproteinase-dependent manner. Introduction of two members of the IgLON family, neurotrimin and NEGR1, in early embryonic neurons was sufficient to confer sensitivity to metalloproteinase inhibitors in neurite outgrowth assays. Outgrowth experiments on immobilized IgLON proteins revealed a role for all IgLON family members in promoting neurite extension from cortical neurons. Together, our findings support a role for metalloproteinase-dependent shedding of IgLON family members in regulating neurite outgrowth from mature cortical neurons. PMID:25538237

  12. Effect of cholecystokinin-8 on in vitro cultured rat cortical neurons against apoptosis

    Ying Liu; Jiangbao Zhou


    BACKGROUND: Cholecystokinin (CCK-8) can regulate the synthesis of NO, release of amino acid substance and suppress Ca2+ inflow. It is unknown about neuroprotection of CCK-8 on neuronal apoptosis and its relationship with nerve growth factor (NGF).OBJECTryE: To investigate the protective effect of CCK-8 on in vitro cultured rat cortical neurons against apoptosis induced by glutamate, and explore its effect on expression of NGF in the neurons during apoptosis.DESIGN: Randomized controlled experiment on the basis of cells.SETTING: Children's Research Institute Affiliated to Children Hospital of Chongqing Medical University.MATERIALS: Eighty SD rats of 1-day old; DMEM/F12 culture medium (Biochrom Company, Germany);Fetal bovine serum (TBD Company, Tianjin); CCK-8 (Sigma Company, USA). Glutamate (Bioengineering Company, Shanghai); TUNEL kit and NGF- in situ hybridization kit (Boster Bioengineering Company,Wuhan); anti-NGF polyclonal antibody (Santa-Cluz Company); NGF immunocytochemistry kit (Zhongshan Company, Beijing).METHODS: The experiments were carried out in Children's Research Institute Affiliated to Children Hospital of Chongqing Medical University from December 2004 to September 2005. Primary cultured cortical neurons from SD rats of 1-day oldwere incubated for 7 days. The cultured cells were divided randomly into 3 groups:experimental group, model group and control group. Neurons in experimental groups were added CCK-8 of 1 ×10-6, 1 ×10-7, 1 ×10-8 μ mol/L respectively, and then added 50 μmol/L glutamate solution a hour later. Neurons in model groups were treated with 50 μ mol/L glutamate solution. In the control group, cells were treated with normal medium. Apoptosis of cultured cortical neurons were observed by fluorescent microscope, the expression of NGF protein and mRNA were determined respectively by immunocytochemistry and in situ hybridization, and apoptosis of cortical neurons was detected with terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated nick

  13. Different cortical projections from three subdivisions of the rat lateral posterior thalamic nucleus: a single-neuron tracing study with viral vectors.

    Nakamura, Hisashi; Hioki, Hiroyuki; Furuta, Takahiro; Kaneko, Takeshi


    The lateral posterior thalamic nucleus (LP) is one of the components of the extrageniculate pathway in the rat visual system, and is cytoarchitecturally divided into three subdivisions--lateral (LPl), rostromedial (LPrm), and caudomedial (LPcm) portions. To clarify the differences in the dendritic fields and axonal arborisations among the three subdivisions, we applied a single-neuron labeling technique with viral vectors to LP neurons. The proximal dendrites of LPl neurons were more numerous than those of LPrm and LPcm neurons, and LPrm neurons tended to have wider dendritic fields than LPl neurons. We then analysed the axonal arborisations of LP neurons by reconstructing the axon fibers in the cortex. The LPl, LPrm and LPcm were different from one another in terms of the projection targets--the main target cortical regions of LPl and LPrm neurons were the secondary and primary visual areas, whereas those of LPcm neurons were the postrhinal and temporal association areas. Furthermore, the principal target cortical layers of LPl neurons in the visual areas were middle layers, but that of LPrm neurons was layer 1. This indicates that LPl and LPrm neurons can be categorised into the core and matrix types of thalamic neurons, respectively, in the visual areas. In addition, LPl neurons formed multiple axonal clusters within the visual areas, whereas the fibers of LPrm neurons were widely and diffusely distributed. It is therefore presumed that these two types of neurons play different roles in visual information processing by dual thalamocortical innervation of the visual areas.

  14. Characterization of energy and neurotransmitter metabolism in cortical glutamatergic neurons derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells: A novel approach to study metabolism in human neurons.

    Aldana, Blanca I; Zhang, Yu; Lihme, Maria Fog; Bak, Lasse K; Nielsen, Jørgen E; Holst, Bjørn; Hyttel, Poul; Freude, Kristine K; Waagepetersen, Helle S


    Alterations in the cellular metabolic machinery of the brain are associated with neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease. Novel human cellular disease models are essential in order to study underlying disease mechanisms. In the present study, we characterized major metabolic pathways in neurons derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSC). With this aim, cultures of hiPSC-derived neurons were incubated with [U-(13)C]glucose, [U-(13)C]glutamate or [U-(13)C]glutamine. Isotopic labeling in metabolites was determined using gas chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry, and cellular amino acid content was quantified by high-performance liquid chromatography. Additionally, we evaluated mitochondrial function using real-time assessment of oxygen consumption via the Seahorse XF(e)96 Analyzer. Moreover, in order to validate the hiPSC-derived neurons as a model system, a metabolic profiling was performed in parallel in primary neuronal cultures of mouse cerebral cortex and cerebellum. These serve as well-established models of GABAergic and glutamatergic neurons, respectively. The hiPSC-derived neurons were previously characterized as being forebrain-specific cortical glutamatergic neurons. However, a comparable preparation of predominantly mouse cortical glutamatergic neurons is not available. We found a higher glycolytic capacity in hiPSC-derived neurons compared to mouse neurons and a substantial oxidative metabolism through the mitochondrial tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle. This finding is supported by the extracellular acidification and oxygen consumption rates measured in the cultured human neurons. [U-(13)C]Glutamate and [U-(13)C]glutamine were found to be efficient energy substrates for the neuronal cultures originating from both mice and humans. Interestingly, isotopic labeling in metabolites from [U-(13)C]glutamate was higher than that from [U-(13)C]glutamine. Although the metabolic profile of hiPSC-derived neurons in vitro was

  15. C3G regulates cortical neuron migration, preplate splitting and radial glial cell attachment.

    Voss, Anne K; Britto, Joanne M; Dixon, Mathew P; Sheikh, Bilal N; Collin, Caitlin; Tan, Seong-Seng; Thomas, Tim


    Neuronal migration is integral to the development of the cerebral cortex and higher brain function. Cortical neuron migration defects lead to mental disorders such as lissencephaly and epilepsy. Interaction of neurons with their extracellular environment regulates cortical neuron migration through cell surface receptors. However, it is unclear how the signals from extracellular matrix proteins are transduced intracellularly. We report here that mouse embryos lacking the Ras family guanine nucleotide exchange factor, C3G (Rapgef1, Grf2), exhibit a cortical neuron migration defect resulting in a failure to split the preplate into marginal zone and subplate and a failure to form a cortical plate. C3G-deficient cortical neurons fail to migrate. Instead, they arrest in a multipolar state and accumulate below the preplate. The basement membrane is disrupted and radial glial processes are disorganised and lack attachment in C3G-deficient brains. C3G is activated in response to reelin in cortical neurons, which, in turn, leads to activation of the small GTPase Rap1. In C3G-deficient cells, Rap1 GTP loading in response to reelin stimulation is reduced. In conclusion, the Ras family regulator C3G is essential for two aspects of cortex development, namely radial glial attachment and neuronal migration.

  16. Primary visual cortex volume and total neuron number are reduced in schizophrenia

    Dorph-Petersen, Karl-Anton; Pierri, Joseph H.; Wu, Qiang


    with schizophrenia reported an increased density of neurons in the primary visual cortex (Brodmann's area 17, BA17). The observed changes in visual processing may thus be reflected in structural changes in the circuitry of BA17. To characterize the structural changes further we used stereological methods based...... on unbiased principles of sampling (Cavalieri's principle and the optical fractionator) to estimate the total volume and neuron number of BA17 in postmortem brains from 10 subjects with schizophrenia and 10 matched normal comparison subjects. In addition, we assessed cortical thickness. We found a marked...... and significant reduction in total neuron number (25%) and volume (22%) of BA17 in the schizophrenia group relative to the normal comparison subjects. In contrast, we found no changes in neuronal density or cortical thickness between the two groups. Subjects with schizophrenia therefore have a smaller cortical...

  17. Development and maturation of embryonic cortical neurons grafted into the damaged adult motor cortex

    Nissrine Ballout


    Full Text Available Injury to the human central nervous system can lead to devastating consequences due to its poor ability to self-repair. Neural transplantation aimed at replacing lost neurons and restore functional circuitry has proven to be a promising therapeutical avenue. We previously reported in adult rodent animal models with cortical lesions that grafted fetal cortical neurons could effectively re-establish specific patterns of projections and synapses. The current study was designed to provide a detailed characterization of the spatio-temporal in vivo development of fetal cortical transplanted cells within the lesioned adult motor cortex and their corresponding axonal projections. We show here that as early as two weeks after grafting, cortical neuroblasts transplanted into damaged adult motor cortex developed appropriate projections to cortical and subcortical targets. Grafted cells initially exhibited characteristics of immature neurons, which then differentiated into mature neurons with appropriate cortical phenotypes where most were glutamatergic and few were GABAergic. All cortical subtypes identified with the specific markers CTIP2, Cux1, FOXP2 and Tbr1 were generated after grafting as evidenced with BrdU co-labeling.The set of data provided here is of interest as it sets biological standards for future studies aimed at replacing fetal cells with embryonic stem cells as a source of cortical neurons.

  18. The neocortex of cetartiodactyls. II. Neuronal morphology of the visual and motor cortices in the giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis).

    Jacobs, Bob; Harland, Tessa; Kennedy, Deborah; Schall, Matthew; Wicinski, Bridget; Butti, Camilla; Hof, Patrick R; Sherwood, Chet C; Manger, Paul R


    The present quantitative study extends our investigation of cetartiodactyls by exploring the neuronal morphology in the giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis) neocortex. Here, we investigate giraffe primary visual and motor cortices from perfusion-fixed brains of three subadults stained with a modified rapid Golgi technique. Neurons (n = 244) were quantified on a computer-assisted microscopy system. Qualitatively, the giraffe neocortex contained an array of complex spiny neurons that included both "typical" pyramidal neuron morphology and "atypical" spiny neurons in terms of morphology and/or orientation. In general, the neocortex exhibited a vertical columnar organization of apical dendrites. Although there was no significant quantitative difference in dendritic complexity for pyramidal neurons between primary visual (n = 78) and motor cortices (n = 65), there was a significant difference in dendritic spine density (motor cortex > visual cortex). The morphology of aspiny neurons in giraffes appeared to be similar to that of other eutherian mammals. For cross-species comparison of neuron morphology, giraffe pyramidal neurons were compared to those quantified with the same methodology in African elephants and some cetaceans (e.g., bottlenose dolphin, minke whale, humpback whale). Across species, the giraffe (and cetaceans) exhibited less widely bifurcating apical dendrites compared to elephants. Quantitative dendritic measures revealed that the elephant and humpback whale had more extensive dendrites than giraffes, whereas the minke whale and bottlenose dolphin had less extensive dendritic arbors. Spine measures were highest in the giraffe, perhaps due to the high quality, perfusion fixation. The neuronal morphology in giraffe neocortex is thus generally consistent with what is known about other cetartiodactyls.

  19. Euchromatin histone methyltransferase 1 regulates cortical neuronal network development

    Bart Martens, Marijn; Frega, Monica; Classen, Jessica; Epping, Lisa; Bijvank, Elske; Benevento, Marco; van Bokhoven, Hans; Tiesinga, Paul; Schubert, Dirk; Nadif Kasri, Nael


    Heterozygous mutations or deletions in the human Euchromatin histone methyltransferase 1 (EHMT1) gene cause Kleefstra syndrome, a neurodevelopmental disorder that is characterized by autistic-like features and severe intellectual disability (ID). Neurodevelopmental disorders including ID and autism may be related to deficits in activity-dependent wiring of brain circuits during development. Although Kleefstra syndrome has been associated with dendritic and synaptic defects in mice and Drosophila, little is known about the role of EHMT1 in the development of cortical neuronal networks. Here we used micro-electrode arrays and whole-cell patch-clamp recordings to investigate the impact of EHMT1 deficiency at the network and single cell level. We show that EHMT1 deficiency impaired neural network activity during the transition from uncorrelated background action potential firing to synchronized network bursting. Spontaneous bursting and excitatory synaptic currents were transiently reduced, whereas miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents were not affected. Finally, we show that loss of function of EHMT1 ultimately resulted in less regular network bursting patterns later in development. These data suggest that the developmental impairments observed in EHMT1-deficient networks may result in a temporal misalignment between activity-dependent developmental processes thereby contributing to the pathophysiology of Kleefstra syndrome. PMID:27767173

  20. Cortical overexpression of neuronal calcium sensor-1 induces functional plasticity in spinal cord following unilateral pyramidal tract injury in rat.

    Ping K Yip

    Full Text Available Following trauma of the adult brain or spinal cord the injured axons of central neurons fail to regenerate or if intact display only limited anatomical plasticity through sprouting. Adult cortical neurons forming the corticospinal tract (CST normally have low levels of the neuronal calcium sensor-1 (NCS1 protein. In primary cultured adult cortical neurons, the lentivector-induced overexpression of NCS1 induces neurite sprouting associated with increased phospho-Akt levels. When the PI3K/Akt signalling pathway was pharmacologically inhibited the NCS1-induced neurite sprouting was abolished. The overexpression of NCS1 in uninjured corticospinal neurons exhibited axonal sprouting across the midline into the CST-denervated side of the spinal cord following unilateral pyramidotomy. Improved forelimb function was demonstrated behaviourally and electrophysiologically. In injured corticospinal neurons, overexpression of NCS1 induced axonal sprouting and regeneration and also neuroprotection. These findings demonstrate that increasing the levels of intracellular NCS1 in injured and uninjured central neurons enhances their intrinsic anatomical plasticity within the injured adult central nervous system.

  1. The endogenous hallucinogen and trace amine N,N-dimethyltryptamine (DMT displays potent protective effects against hypoxia via sigma-1 receptor activation in human primary iPSC-derived cortical neurons and microglia-like immune cells

    Attila Szabo


    Full Text Available N,N-dimethyltryptamine (DMT is a potent endogenous hallucinogen present in the brain of humans and other mammals. Despite extensive research, its physiological role remains largely unknown. Recently, DMT has been found to activate the sigma-1 receptor (Sig-1R, an intracellular chaperone fulfilling an interface role between the endoplasmic reticulum (ER and mitochondria. It ensures the correct transmission of ER stress into the nucleus resulting in the enhanced production of antistress and antioxidant proteins. Due to this function, the activation of Sig-1R can mitigate the outcome of hypoxia or oxidative stress. In this paper we aimed to test the hypothesis that DMT plays a neuroprotective role in the brain by activating the Sig-1R. We tested whether DMT can mitigate hypoxic stress in in vitro cultured human cortical neurons (derived from induced pluripotent stem cells, and in monocyte-derived macrophages and dendritic cells. Here we report that DMT robustly increases the survival of these cell types in severe hypoxia (0.5% O2 through the Sig-1R. Furthermore, this phenomenon is associated with the decreased expression and function of the alpha subunit of the hypoxia-inducible factor 1 (HIF-1 suggesting that DMT-mediated Sig-1R activation may alleviate hypoxia-induced cellular stress and increase survival in a HIF-1-independent manner. Our results reveal a novel and important role of DMT in human cellular physiology. We postulate that this compound may be endogenously generated in situations of stress, ameliorating the adverse effects of hypoxic/ischemic insult to the brain.

  2. The Endogenous Hallucinogen and Trace Amine N,N-Dimethyltryptamine (DMT) Displays Potent Protective Effects against Hypoxia via Sigma-1 Receptor Activation in Human Primary iPSC-Derived Cortical Neurons and Microglia-Like Immune Cells.

    Szabo, Attila; Kovacs, Attila; Riba, Jordi; Djurovic, Srdjan; Rajnavolgyi, Eva; Frecska, Ede


    N,N-dimethyltryptamine (DMT) is a potent endogenous hallucinogen present in the brain of humans and other mammals. Despite extensive research, its physiological role remains largely unknown. Recently, DMT has been found to activate the sigma-1 receptor (Sig-1R), an intracellular chaperone fulfilling an interface role between the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and mitochondria. It ensures the correct transmission of ER stress into the nucleus resulting in the enhanced production of antistress and antioxidant proteins. Due to this function, the activation of Sig-1R can mitigate the outcome of hypoxia or oxidative stress. In this paper, we aimed to test the hypothesis that DMT plays a neuroprotective role in the brain by activating the Sig-1R. We tested whether DMT can mitigate hypoxic stress in in vitro cultured human cortical neurons (derived from induced pluripotent stem cells, iPSCs), monocyte-derived macrophages (moMACs), and dendritic cells (moDCs). Results showed that DMT robustly increases the survival of these cell types in severe hypoxia (0.5% O2) through the Sig-1R. Furthermore, this phenomenon is associated with the decreased expression and function of the alpha subunit of the hypoxia-inducible factor 1 (HIF-1) suggesting that DMT-mediated Sig-1R activation may alleviate hypoxia-induced cellular stress and increase survival in a HIF-1-independent manner. Our results reveal a novel and important role of DMT in human cellular physiology. We postulate that this compound may be endogenously generated in situations of stress, ameliorating the adverse effects of hypoxic/ischemic insult to the brain.

  3. [A protocol for primary dissociated astrocyte and neuron co-culture].

    Shi, Ying; Zhou, Mi; Jiang, Min


    Cultured primary hippocampal neurons are ideal tool for investigating the subcellular localization and trafficking of neuronal proteins. The aim of the present study was to establish a method to co-culture hippocampal neurons and cortical astrocytes, which would guarantee well conditions of neurons. Newborn Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats were sacrificed by decapitation. The cortex of cerebrum was cut into pieces, and the cortical tissue was digested with trypsin. The liquid suspension of single cells was planted onto a 25 cm² culture flask. On the fourth day of culture, the tissue cells except astrocytes were removed by intensive agitation of culture flask. Purified astrocytes were allowed to grow continuously until they reached most area of flask. At this time point, we replaced the culture media with neuronal cell media containing cytarabine, and planted the primary culture of rat hippocampal neurons onto the feed layer of cortical astrocytes. The microscopic observation results showed that, the astrocytes evenly grew without obvious boundaries between each other, and exhibited good purity. The co-cultured hippocampal neurons were in good condition, developed intertwined network of axons and dendrites, lived for a long time, and could tolerate gene transfection. Above all, this method is relatively simple from a technical point of view, yet provides healthy and reliable neuronal culture.

  4. Characterization of age-dependent and progressive cortical neuronal degeneration in presenilin conditional mutant mice.

    Mary Wines-Samuelson

    Full Text Available Presenilins are the major causative genes of familial Alzheimer's disease (AD. Our previous study has demonstrated essential roles of presenilins in memory and neuronal survival. Here, we explore further how loss of presenilins results in age-related, progressive neurodegeneration in the adult cerebral cortex, where the pathogenesis of AD occurs. To circumvent the requirement of presenilins for embryonic development, we used presenilin conditional double knockout (Psen cDKO mice, in which presenilin inactivation is restricted temporally and spatially to excitatory neurons of the postnatal forebrain beginning at 4 weeks of age. Increases in the number of degenerating (Fluoro-Jade B+, 7.6-fold and apoptotic (TUNEL+, 7.4-fold neurons, which represent approximately 0.1% of all cortical neurons, were first detected at 2 months of age when there is still no significant loss of cortical neurons and volume in Psen cDKO mice. By 4 months of age, significant loss of cortical neurons (approximately 9% and gliosis was found in Psen cDKO mice. The apoptotic cell death is associated with caspase activation, as shown by increased numbers of cells immunoreactive for active caspases 9 and 3 in the Psen cDKO cortex. The vulnerability of cortical neurons to loss of presenilins is region-specific with cortical neurons in the lateral cortex most susceptible. Compared to the neocortex, the increase in apoptotic cell death and the extent of neurodegeneration are less dramatic in the Psen cDKO hippocampus, possibly in part due to increased neurogenesis in the aging dentate gyrus. Neurodegeneration is also accompanied with mitochondrial defects, as indicated by reduced mitochondrial density and altered mitochondrial size distribution in aging Psen cortical neurons. Together, our findings show that loss of presenilins in cortical neurons causes apoptotic cell death occurring in a very small percentage of neurons, which accumulates over time and leads to substantial loss

  5. Slow cortical rhythms: from single-neuron electrophysiology to whole-brain imaging in vivo

    Olcese, U.; Faraguna, U.


    The slow cortical oscillation is the major brain rhythm occurring during sleep, and has been the object of thorough investigation for over thirty years. Despite all these efforts, the function and the neuronal mechanisms behind slow cortical rhythms remain only partially understood. In this review

  6. Slow cortical rhythms: from single-neuron electrophysiology to whole-brain imaging in vivo

    U. Olcese; U. Faraguna


    The slow cortical oscillation is the major brain rhythm occurring during sleep, and has been the object of thorough investigation for over thirty years. Despite all these efforts, the function and the neuronal mechanisms behind slow cortical rhythms remain only partially understood. In this review w

  7. Acidosis-Induced Dysfunction of Cortical GABAergic Neurons through Astrocyte-Related Excitotoxicity.

    Huang, Li; Zhao, Shidi; Lu, Wei; Guan, Sudong; Zhu, Yan; Wang, Jin-Hui


    Acidosis impairs cognitions and behaviors presumably by acidification-induced changes in neuronal metabolism. Cortical GABAergic neurons are vulnerable to pathological factors and their injury leads to brain dysfunction. How acidosis induces GABAergic neuron injury remains elusive. As the glia cells and neurons interact each other, we intend to examine the role of the astrocytes in acidosis-induced GABAergic neuron injury. Experiments were done at GABAergic cells and astrocytes in mouse cortical slices. To identify astrocytic involvement in acidosis-induced impairment, we induced the acidification in single GABAergic neuron by infusing proton intracellularly or in both neurons and astrocytes by using proton extracellularly. Compared the effects of intracellular acidification and extracellular acidification on GABAergic neurons, we found that their active intrinsic properties and synaptic outputs appeared more severely impaired in extracellular acidosis than intracellular acidosis. Meanwhile, extracellular acidosis deteriorated glutamate transporter currents on the astrocytes and upregulated excitatory synaptic transmission on the GABAergic neurons. Moreover, the antagonists of glutamate NMDA-/AMPA-receptors partially reverse extracellular acidosis-induced injury in the GABAergic neurons. Our studies suggest that acidosis leads to the dysfunction of cortical GABAergic neurons by astrocyte-mediated excitotoxicity, in addition to their metabolic changes as indicated previously.

  8. Rab, Arf, and Arl-Regulated Membrane Traffic in Cortical Neuron Migration.

    Tang, Bor Luen


    The migration of projection neurons from its birthplace in the subventricular zone to their final destination in the cortical plate is a complex process that requires a series of highly coordinated cellular events. Amongst the key factors involved in the processes are modulators of cytoskeletal dynamics, as well as cellular membrane traffic. Members of the small GTPases family responsible for the latter process, the Rabs and Arfs, have been recently implicated in cortical neuron migration. Rab5 and Rab11, which are key modulators of endocytosis and endocytic recycling respectively, ensure proper surface expression and distribution of N-cadherin, a key adhesion protein that tethers migrating neurons to the radial glia fiber tracts during pia-directed migration. Rab7, which is associated with lysosomal biogenesis and function, is important for the final step of terminal translocation when N-cadherin is downregulated by lysosomal degradation. Arf6 activity, which is known to be important in neuronal processes outgrowth, may negatively impact the multipolar-bipolar transition of cortical neurons undergoing radial migration, but the downstream effector of Arf6 in this regard is not yet known. In addition to the above, members of the Arl family which have been recently shown to be important in radial glia scaffold formation, would also be important for cortical neuron migration. In this short review, we discuss recent advances in our understanding of the importance of membrane traffic regulated by the Rab, Arf, and Arl family members in cortical neuron migration.

  9. The neuroprotective efficacy of cell-penetrating peptides TAT, penetratin, Arg-9, and Pep-1 in glutamic acid, kainic acid, and in vitro ischemia injury models using primary cortical neuronal cultures.

    Meloni, Bruno P; Craig, Amanda J; Milech, Nadia; Hopkins, Richard M; Watt, Paul M; Knuckey, Neville W


    Cell-penetrating peptides (CPPs) are small peptides (typically 5-25 amino acids), which are used to facilitate the delivery of normally non-permeable cargos such as other peptides, proteins, nucleic acids, or drugs into cells. However, several recent studies have demonstrated that the TAT CPP has neuroprotective properties. Therefore, in this study, we assessed the TAT and three other CPPs (penetratin, Arg-9, Pep-1) for their neuroprotective properties in cortical neuronal cultures following exposure to glutamic acid, kainic acid, or in vitro ischemia (oxygen-glucose deprivation). Arg-9, penetratin, and TAT-D displayed consistent and high level neuroprotective activity in both the glutamic acid (IC50: 0.78, 3.4, 13.9 μM) and kainic acid (IC50: 0.81, 2.0, 6.2 μM) injury models, while Pep-1 was ineffective. The TAT-D isoform displayed similar efficacy to the TAT-L isoform in the glutamic acid model. Interestingly, Arg-9 was the only CPP that displayed efficacy when washed-out prior to glutamic acid exposure. Neuroprotection following in vitro ischemia was more variable with all peptides providing some level of neuroprotection (IC50; Arg-9: 6.0 μM, TAT-D: 7.1 μM, penetratin/Pep-1: >10 μM). The positive control peptides JNKI-1D-TAT (JNK inhibitory peptide) and/or PYC36L-TAT (AP-1 inhibitory peptide) were neuroprotective in all models. Finally, in a post-glutamic acid treatment experiment, Arg-9 was highly effective when added immediately after, and mildly effective when added 15 min post-insult, while the JNKI-1D-TAT control peptide was ineffective when added post-insult. These findings demonstrate that different CPPs have the ability to inhibit neurodamaging events/pathways associated with excitotoxic and ischemic injuries. More importantly, they highlight the need to interpret neuroprotection studies when using CPPs as delivery agents with caution. On a positive note, the cytoprotective properties of CPPs suggests they are ideal carrier molecules to

  10. Protective effects of isoatriplicolide tiglate from Paulownia coreana against glutamate-induced neurotoxicity in primary cultured rat cortical cells.

    Chung, Ill-Min; Kim, Eun-Hye; Jeon, Hyun-Seok; Moon, Hyung-In


    To examine the neuroprotective effects of Paulownia coreana, we tested its protection against the glutamate-induced neurotoxicity to primary cultured cortical neurons. An aqueous extract of the plants exhibited significant protection against glutamate-induced toxicity in primary cultured rat cortical cells. In order to clarify the neuroprotective mechanism(s) of this observed effect, isolation was performed to seek and identify active fractions and components. By such fractionation, one bioactive sesquiterpene lactone, isoatriplicolide tiglate, was isolated, which exhibited significant neuroprotective activities against glutamate-induced toxicity, exhibiting cell viability of about 50%, at concentrations ranging from 0.1 microM to 10 microM.

  11. Latency dependent development of related firing patterns of cultured cortical neurons

    le Feber, Jakob; van Pelt, Jaap; Rutten, Wim

    Networks of cortical neurons were grown over multi electrode arrays to enable simultaneous measurement of signals from multiple neurons. We described functional connectivity in these networks by relationships be¬tween individual electrodes, based on conditional firing probabilities. In this study we

  12. 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


    Full Text Available Abstract Background 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. Results 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. Conclusions These findings

  13. Bidirectional Regulation of Innate and Learned Behaviors That Rely on Frequency Discrimination by Cortical Inhibitory Neurons.

    Mark Aizenberg


    Full Text Available The ability to discriminate tones of different frequencies is fundamentally important for everyday hearing. While neurons in the primary auditory cortex (AC respond differentially to tones of different frequencies, whether and how AC regulates auditory behaviors that rely on frequency discrimination remains poorly understood. Here, we find that the level of activity of inhibitory neurons in AC controls frequency specificity in innate and learned auditory behaviors that rely on frequency discrimination. Photoactivation of parvalbumin-positive interneurons (PVs improved the ability of the mouse to detect a shift in tone frequency, whereas photosuppression of PVs impaired the performance. Furthermore, photosuppression of PVs during discriminative auditory fear conditioning increased generalization of conditioned response across tone frequencies, whereas PV photoactivation preserved normal specificity of learning. The observed changes in behavioral performance were correlated with bidirectional changes in the magnitude of tone-evoked responses, consistent with predictions of a model of a coupled excitatory-inhibitory cortical network. Direct photoactivation of excitatory neurons, which did not change tone-evoked response magnitude, did not affect behavioral performance in either task. Our results identify a new function for inhibition in the auditory cortex, demonstrating that it can improve or impair acuity of innate and learned auditory behaviors that rely on frequency discrimination.

  14. Graded defragmentation of cortical neuronal firing during recovery of consciousness in rats.

    Vizuete, J A; Pillay, S; Ropella, K M; Hudetz, A G


    State-dependent neuronal firing patterns reflect changes in ongoing information processing and cortical function. A disruption of neuronal coordination has been suggested as the neural correlate of anesthesia. Here, we studied the temporal correlation patterns of ongoing spike activity, during a stepwise reduction of the volatile anesthetic desflurane, in the cerebral cortex of freely moving rats. We hypothesized that the recovery of consciousness from general anesthesia is accompanied by specific changes in the spatiotemporal pattern and correlation of neuronal activity. Sixty-four contact microelectrode arrays were chronically implanted in the primary visual cortex (contacts spanning 1.4-mm depth and 1.4-mm width) for recording of extracellular unit activity at four steady-state levels of anesthesia (8-2% desflurane) and wakefulness. Recovery of consciousness was defined as the regaining of the righting reflex (near 4%). High-intensity firing (HI) periods were segmented using a threshold (200-ms) representing the minimum in the neurons' bimodal interspike interval histogram under anesthesia. We found that the HI periods were highly fragmented in deep anesthesia and gradually transformed to a near-continuous firing pattern at wakefulness. As the anesthetic was withdrawn, HI periods became longer and increasingly correlated among the units both locally and across remote recording sites. Paradoxically, in 4 of 8 animals, HI correlation was also high at the deepest level of anesthesia (8%) when local field potentials (LFP) were burst-suppressed. We conclude that recovery from desflurane anesthesia is accompanied by a graded defragmentation of neuronal activity in the cerebral cortex. Hypersynchrony during deep anesthesia is an exception that occurs only with LFP burst suppression. Copyright © 2014 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. MEC-17 deficiency leads to reduced α-tubulin acetylation and impaired migration of cortical neurons.

    Li, Lei; Wei, Dan; Wang, Qiong; Pan, Jing; Liu, Rong; Zhang, Xu; Bao, Lan


    Neuronal migration is a fundamental process during the development of the cerebral cortex and is regulated by cytoskeletal components. Microtubule dynamics can be modulated by posttranslational modifications to tubulin subunits. Acetylation of α-tubulin at lysine 40 is important in regulating microtubule properties, and this process is controlled by acetyltransferase and deacetylase. MEC-17 is a newly discovered α-tubulin acetyltransferase that has been found to play a major role in the acetylation of α-tubulin in different species in vivo. However, the physiological function of MEC-17 during neural development is largely unknown. Here, we report that MEC-17 is critical for the migration of cortical neurons in the rat. MEC-17 was strongly expressed in the cerebral cortex during development. MEC-17 deficiency caused migratory defects in the cortical projection neurons and interneurons, and perturbed the transition of projection neurons from the multipolar stage to the unipolar/bipolar stage in the intermediate zone of the cortex. Furthermore, knockdown of α-tubulin deacetylase HDAC6 or overexpression of tubulin(K40Q) to mimic acetylated α-tubulin could reduce the migratory and morphological defects caused by MEC-17 deficiency in cortical projection neurons. Thus, MEC-17, which regulates the acetylation of α-tubulin, appears to control the migration and morphological transition of cortical neurons. This finding reveals the importance of MEC-17 and α-tubulin acetylation in cortical development.

  16. Excitatory cortical neurons with multipolar shape establish neuronal polarity by forming a tangentially oriented axon in the intermediate zone.

    Hatanaka, Yumiko; Yamauchi, Kenta


    The formation of axon-dendrite polarity is crucial for neuron to make the proper information flow within the brain. Although the processes of neuronal polarity formation have been extensively studied using neurons in dissociated culture, the corresponding developmental processes in vivo are still unclear. Here, we illuminate the initial steps of morphological polarization of excitatory cortical neurons in situ, by sparsely labeling their neuroepithelial progenitors using in utero electroporation and then examining their neuronal progeny in brain sections and in slice cultures. Morphological analysis showed that an axon-like long tangential process formed in progeny cells in the intermediate zone (IZ). Time-lapse imaging analysis using slice culture revealed that progeny cells with multipolar shape, after alternately extending and retracting their short processes for several hours, suddenly elongated a long process tangentially. These cells then transformed into a bipolar shape, extending a pia-directed leading process, and migrated radially leaving the tangential process behind, which gave rise to an "L-shaped" axon. Our findings suggest that neuronal polarity in these cells is established de novo from a nonpolarized stage in vivo and indicate that excitatory cortical neurons with multipolar shape in the IZ initiate axon outgrowth before radial migration into the cortical plate.

  17. Cultured networks of excitatory projection neurons and inhibitory interneurons for studying human cortical neurotoxicity.

    Xu, Jin-Chong; Fan, Jing; Wang, Xueqing; Eacker, Stephen M; Kam, Tae-In; Chen, Li; Yin, Xiling; Zhu, Juehua; Chi, Zhikai; Jiang, Haisong; Chen, Rong; Dawson, Ted M; Dawson, Valina L


    Translating neuroprotective treatments from discovery in cell and animal models to the clinic has proven challenging. To reduce the gap between basic studies of neurotoxicity and neuroprotection and clinically relevant therapies, we developed a human cortical neuron culture system from human embryonic stem cells or human inducible pluripotent stem cells that generated both excitatory and inhibitory neuronal networks resembling the composition of the human cortex. This methodology used timed administration of retinoic acid to FOXG1(+) neural precursor cells leading to differentiation of neuronal populations representative of the six cortical layers with both excitatory and inhibitory neuronal networks that were functional and homeostatically stable. In human cortical neuronal cultures, excitotoxicity or ischemia due to oxygen and glucose deprivation led to cell death that was dependent on N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors, nitric oxide (NO), and poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) (a cell death pathway called parthanatos that is distinct from apoptosis, necroptosis, and other forms of cell death). Neuronal cell death was attenuated by PARP inhibitors that are currently in clinical trials for cancer treatment. This culture system provides a new platform for the study of human cortical neurotoxicity and suggests that PARP inhibitors may be useful for ameliorating excitotoxic and ischemic cell death in human neurons.

  18. Neuroprotection with metformin and thymoquinone against ethanol-induced apoptotic neurodegeneration in prenatal rat cortical neurons

    Ullah Ikram


    -induced neuronal apoptosis in primary rat cortical neurons. The collective data demonstrated that Met and TQ have the potential to ameliorate ethanol neurotoxicity and revealed a possible protective target mechanism for the damaging effects of ethanol during early brain development.

  19. Spatio-temporal extension in site of origin for cortical calretinin neurons in primates

    Ana eHladnik


    Full Text Available The vast majority of cortical GABAergic neurons can be defined by parvalbumin, somatostatin or calretinin expression. In most mammalians parvalbumin and somatostatin interneurons have constant proportions, each representing 5-7% of the total neuron number. In contrast, there is a 3 fold increase in the proportion of calretinin interneurons, which do not exceed 4% in rodents and reach 12% in higher order areas of primate cerebral cortex. In rodents almost all parvalbumin and somatostatin interneurons originate from the medial part of the subpallial proliferative structure, the ganglionic eminence (GE, while almost all calretinin interneurons originate from its caudal part. The spatial pattern of cortical GABAergic neurons origin from the GE is preserved in the monkey and human brain. However, it could be expected that the evolution is changing developmental rules to enable considerable expansion of calretinin interneuron population. During the early fetal period in primates cortical GABAergic neurons are almost entirely generated in the subpallium, as in rodents. Already at that time the primate caudal ganglionic eminence (CGE shows a relative increase in size and production of calretinin interneurons. During the second trimester of gestation, that is the main neurogenetic stage in primates without clear correlates found in rodents, the pallial production of cortical GABAergic neurons together with the extended persistence of the GE is observed. We propose that the CGE could be the main source of calretinin interneurons for the posterior and lateral cortical regions, but not for the frontal cortex. The associative granular frontal cortex represents around one third of the cortical surface and contains almost half of cortical calretinin interneurons. The majority of calretinin interneurons destined for the frontal cortex could be generated in the pallium, especially in the newly evolved outer subventricular zone that becomes the main pool of

  20. Genetic evidence for p75NTR-dependent tetraploidy in cortical projection neurons from adult mice.

    López-Sánchez, Noelia; Frade, José M


    A subpopulation of chick retinal projection neurons becomes tetraploid during development, an event prevented by blocking antibodies against p75 neurotrophin receptor (p75(NTR)). We have used an optimized flow cytometric assay, based on the analysis of unfixed brain cell nuclei, to study whether p75(NTR)-dependent neuronal tetraploidization takes place in the cerebral cortex, giving rise to projection neurons as well. We show that 3% of neurons in both murine neocortex and chick telencephalic derivatives are tetraploid, and that in the mouse ~85% of these neurons express the immediate early genes Erg-1 and c-Fos, indicating that they are functionally active. Tetraploid cortical neurons (65-80%) express CTIP2, a transcription factor specific for subcortical projection neurons in the mouse neocortex. During the period in which these neurons are born, p75(NTR) is detected in differentiating neurons undergoing DNA replication. Accordingly, p75(NTR)-deficient mice contain a reduced proportion of both NeuN and CTIP2-positive neocortical tetraploid neurons, thus providing genetic evidence for the participation of p75(NTR) in the induction of neuronal tetraploidy in the mouse neocortex. In the striatum tetraploidy is mainly associated with long-range projection neurons as well since ~80% of tetraploid neurons in this structure express calbindin, a marker of neostriatal-matrix spiny neurons, known to establish long-range projections to the substantia nigra and globus pallidus. In contrast, only 20% of tetraploid cortical neurons express calbindin, which is mainly expressed in layers II-III, where CTIP2 is absent. We conclude that tetraploidy mainly affects long-range projection neurons, being facilitated by p75(NTR) in the neocortex.

  1. Buffer capacity of rat cortical tissue as well as of cultured neurons and astrocytes.

    Katsura, K; Mellergård, P; Theander, S; Ouyang, Y B; Siesjö, B K


    The primary objective of this work was to assess the intrinsic nonbicarbonate buffer capacity (beta i) of cultured neurons and astrocytes and to compare the beta i values obtained to those of neocortical tissue. A second objective was to determine the pH dependence of beta i. Titration of homogenates of whole-brain cortical tissue and cultured neurons with NaOH and HCl gave beta i values of 25-30 mmol.l-1 x pH-1. The buffer capacity was essentially constant in the pH range of 6-7. Astrocytes showed a higher buffer capacity and a clear relationship between beta i and pH. However, beta i decreased when pH was reduced from 7 to 6. The beta i values derived from microspectrofluorometric studies on neurons and astrocytes were surprisingly variable, ranging from 10 to 50 mmol.l-1 x pH-1. The ammonia "step method" suggested that beta i increased dramatically when pH was lowered from 7 to 6 but the propionic "step method" failed to reveal such a pH dependence. Some techniques obviously give erroneous values for beta i, presumably because changes in buffer base concentration (due to transmembrane fluxes of H+, HCO3-, NH4+ or anions of weak acids) violate the principles upon which the calculations are based. From the results obtained by direct titration and with the propionate technique, we tentatively conclude that beta i in neurons and astrocytes are approximately 20 and 30 mmol.l-1 x pH-1, respectively. We further suggest that the term "intrinsic buffer capacity", as commonly used, is redefined.

  2. The Impact of CXCR4 Blockade on the Survival of Rat Brain Cortical Neurons

    Merino, José Joaquín; Garcimartín, Alba; López-Oliva, María Elvira; Benedí, Juana; González, María Pilar


    Background: Chemokine receptor type 4 (CXCR4) plays a role in neuronal survival/cell repair and also contributes to the progression of cancer and neurodegenerative diseases. Chemokine ligand 12 (CXCL12) binds to CXCR4. In this study, we have investigated whether CXCR4 blockade by AMD3100 (a CXCR4 antagonist, member of bicyclam family) may affect neuronal survival in the absence of insult. Thus, we have measured the mitochondrial membrane potential (MMP), Bax and Bcl-2 protein translocation, and cytochrome c release in AMD3100-treated brain cortical neurons at 7 DIV (days in vitro). Methods: For this aim, AMD3100 (200 nM) was added to cortical neurons for 24 h, and several biomarkers like cell viability, reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation, lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) release, caspase-3/9 activity, proteins Bax and Bcl-2 translocation, and cytochrome c release were analyzed by immunoblot. Results: CXCR4 blockade by AMD3100 (200 nM, 24 h) induces mitochondrial hyperpolarization and increases caspase-3/9 hyperpolarization without affecting LDH release as compared to untreated controls. AMD3100 also increases cytochrome c release and promotes Bax translocation to the mitochondria, whereas it raises cytosolic Bcl-2 levels in brain cortical neurons. Conclusion: CXCR4 blockade induces cellular death via intrinsic apoptosis in rat brain cortical neurons in absence of insult. PMID:27916896

  3. Sulfite triggers sustained calcium overload in cultured cortical neurons via a redox-dependent mechanism.

    Wang, Xiao; Cao, Hui; Guan, Xin-Lei; Long, Li-Hong; Hu, Zhuang-Li; Ni, Lan; Wang, Fang; Chen, Jian-Guo; Wu, Peng-Fei


    Sulfite is a compound commonly used as preservative in foods and pharmaceuticals. Many studies have examined the neurotoxicity of sulfite, but its effect on neuronal calcium homeostasis has not yet been reported. Here, we observed the effect of sulfite on the cytosolic free calcium concentration ([Ca(2+)]i) in cultured cortical neurons using Fura-2/AM based calcium imaging technique. Sulfite (250-1000μM) caused a sustained increase in [Ca(2+)]i in the neurons via a dose-dependent manner. In Ca(2+)-free solution, sulfite failed to increase [Ca(2+)]i. After the depletion of the intracellular calcium store, the effect of sulfite on the [Ca(2+)]i was largely abolished. Pharmacological inhibition of phospholipase C (PLC)-inositol 1,4,5-triphosphate (IP3) signaling pathway blocked sulfite-induced increase of [Ca(2+)]i. Interestingly, antioxidants such as trolox and dithiothreitol, abolished the increase of [Ca(2+)]i induced by sulfite. Exposure to sulfite triggered generation of sulfur- and oxygen-centered free radicals in neurons and increased oxidative stress both in the cultured cortical neurons and the prefrontal cortex of rats. Furthemore, sulfite decreased cell viability in cultured cortical neurons via a calcium-dependent manner. Thus, our current study suggests that the redox-dependent calcium overload triggered by sulfite in cortical neuronsmay be involved in its neurotoxicity. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

  4. Interleukin-18 directly protects cortical neurons by activating PI3K/AKT/NF-κB/CREB pathways.

    Zhou, Jia; Ping, Feng-feng; Lv, Wen-ting; Feng, Jun-yi; Shang, Jing


    Interleukin-18 (IL-18), a member of the IL-1 family of cytokines, was initially identified as an interferon (IFN)-γ-inducing factor. IL-18 is expressed in both immune and non-immune cells and participates in the adjustment of multitude cellular functions. Nonetheless, the effects of IL-18 on cortical neurons have not been explored. The present study was conducted to investigate the influence of IL-18 on rat primary cortical neurons and elucidate the underlying mechanisms. We proved that rrIL-18 increased the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) expression in a time-dependent manner. Treatment with rrIL-18 (50 ng/ml) deactivated phosphatase and tensin homolog deleted on chromosome 10 (PTEN) by facilitating its phosphorylation, enhanced the expression of Phosphoinositide 3-OH kinase (PI3K) and p-Akt, standing for the activation of the PI3K/Akt pathway. As its pivotal downstream pathways, nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB), cAMP-responsive element binding protein (CREB)/Bcl-2 and glycogen synthase kinase-3β (GSK-3β) were examined in further steps. Our data revealed that rrIL-18 stimulated NF-κB activation, improved p-CREB and anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 expression levels. But rrIL-18 had little or no effect on GSK-3β pathway. Besides, rrIL-18 increased levels of BDNF and Bcl-2/Bax ratio and decreased cleaved caspase-3 expression to protect cortical neurons from damage induced by oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD). These results in vitro showed the protection of IL-18 on cortical neurons. And this direct neuroprotective effect of IL-18 is crippled by PI3K inhibitor wortmannin.

  5. Fifty hertz extremely low-frequency magnetic field exposure elicits redox and trophic response in rat-cortical neurons.

    Di Loreto, Silvia; Falone, Stefano; Caracciolo, Valentina; Sebastiani, Pierluigi; D'Alessandro, Antonella; Mirabilio, Alessandro; Zimmitti, Vincenzo; Amicarelli, Fernanda


    Large research activity has raised around the mechanisms of interaction between extremely low-frequency magnetic fields (ELF-MFs) and biological systems. ELF-MFs may interfere with chemical reactions involving reactive oxygen species (ROS), thus facilitating oxidative damages in living cells. Cortical neurons are particularly susceptible to oxidative stressors and are also highly dependent on the specific factors and proteins governing neuronal development, activity and survival. The aim of the present work was to investigate the effects of exposures to two different 50 Hz sinusoidal ELF-MFs intensities (0.1 and 1 mT) in maturing rat cortical neurons' major anti-oxidative enzymatic and non-enzymatic cellular protection systems, membrane peroxidative damage, as well as growth factor, and cytokine expression pattern. Briefly, our results showed that ELF-MFs affected positively the cell viability and concomitantly reduced the levels of apoptotic death in rat neuronal primary cultures, with no significant effects on the main anti-oxidative defences. Interestingly, linear regression analysis suggested a positive correlation between reduced glutathione (GSH) and ROS levels in 1 mT MF-exposed cells. On this basis, our hypothesis is that GSH could play an important role in the antioxidant defence towards the ELF-MF-induced redox challenge. Moreover, the GSH-based cellular response was achieved together with a brain-derived neurotrophic factor over-expression as well as with the interleukin 1beta-dependent regulation of pro-survival signaling pathways after ELF-MF exposure.

  6. Capsaicin protects cortical neurons against ischemia/reperfusion injury via down-regulating NMDA receptors.

    Huang, Ming; Cheng, Gen; Tan, Han; Qin, Rui; Zou, Yimin; Wang, Yun; Zhang, Ying


    Capsaicin, the ingredient responsible for the pungent taste of hot chili peppers, is widely used in the study and management of pain. Recently, its neuroprotective effect has been described in multiple studies. Herein, we investigated the underlying mechanisms for the neuroprotective effect of capsaicin. Direct injection of capsaicin (1 or 3nmol) into the peri-infarct area reduced the infarct volume and improved neurological behavioral scoring and motor coordination function in the middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO)/reperfusion model in rats. The time window of the protective effect of capsaicin was within 1h after reperfusion, when excitotoxicity is the main reason of cell death. In cultured cortical neurons, administration of capsaicin attenuated glutamate-induced excitotoxic injury. With respect to the mechanisms of the neuroprotective effect of capsaicin, reduced calcium influx after glutamate stimulation was observed following capsaicin pretreatment in cortical neurons. Trpv1 knock-out abolished the inhibitory effect of capsaicin on glutamate-induced calcium influx and subsequent neuronal death. Reduced expression of GluN1 and GluN2B, subunits of NMDA receptor, was examined after capsaicin treatment in cortical neurons. In summary, our studies reveal that the neuroprotective effect of capsaicin in cortical neurons is TRPV1-dependent and down-regulation of the expression and function of NMDA receptors contributes to the protection afforded by capsaicin. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  7. Disruption of Transient Serotonin Accumulation by Non-Serotonin-Producing Neurons Impairs Cortical Map Development

    Xiaoning Chen


    Full Text Available Polymorphisms that alter serotonin transporter SERT expression and functionality increase the risks for autism and psychiatric traits. Here, we investigate how SERT controls serotonin signaling in developing CNS in mice. SERT is transiently expressed in specific sets of glutamatergic neurons and uptakes extrasynaptic serotonin during perinatal CNS development. We show that SERT expression in glutamatergic thalamocortical axons (TCAs dictates sensory map architecture. Knockout of SERT in TCAs causes lasting alterations in TCA patterning, spatial organizations of cortical neurons, and dendritic arborization in sensory cortex. Pharmacological reduction of serotonin synthesis during the first postnatal week rescues sensory maps in SERTGluΔ mice. Furthermore, knockdown of SERT expression in serotonin-producing neurons does not impair barrel maps. We propose that spatiotemporal SERT expression in non-serotonin-producing neurons represents a determinant in early life genetic programming of cortical circuits. Perturbing this SERT function could be involved in the origin of sensory and cognitive deficits associated with neurodevelopmental disorders.


    The insecticidal and neurotoxic effects of pyrethroids result from prolonged sodium channel inactivation, which causes alterations in neuronal firing and communication. Previously, we determined the relative potencies of 11 type I and type II pyrethroid insecticides using microel...

  9. 二十烷酸对大鼠原代皮质神经元APP及BACE1表达的影响%Effects of eicosanoic acid on APP and BACE1 expressions in cortical neurons of primary cultured rats

    张煜; 杨磊; 许娜; 冯玲玲; 石如玲


    Objective To investigate the effect ofeicosanoic acid (EA) on β-amyloid precursor protein (APP) and β-site APP cleaving enzyme 1 (BACE1) expressions in cortical neurons of primary cultured rats.Methods Cortical neurons of primary cultured rats were divided randomly into EA treatment group (being administered with 40 μmol/L eicosanoic acid for 24 h) and control group (medium containing the same amount of solvent).The APP and BACE1 protein levels were detected by Westem blotting.The APP and BACE1 mRNA levels were detected by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR).Results The levels of APP751+770 mRNA,APP protein and BACE1 protein in the EA treatment group were significantly higher than those in control group (P<0.05).Conclusion The saturated fatty acids increase the APP and BACE1 expressions,which may play an important role in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease.%目的 观察二十烷酸对大鼠原代皮质神经元β-淀粉样前体蛋白(APP)及β-分泌酶(BACE1)表达的影响,探讨饱和脂肪酸在阿尔茨海默病发病机制中的作用. 方法 将原代培养的大鼠皮质神经元分为2组:对照组、二十烷酸组.Western blotting法检测神经元APP、BACE1蛋白表达,RT-PCR法分析APP及BACE1 mRNA表达. 结果 与对照组相比,二十烷酸组神经元APP751+770mRNA表达和APP蛋白表达显著升高,BACE1蛋白表达也显著升高,差异有统计学意义(P<0.05). 结论 饱和脂肪酸增加APP及BACE1表达,可能在阿尔茨海默病发病机制中起重要作用.

  10. Procedure for recording the simultaneous activity of single neurons distributed across cortical areas during sensory discrimination

    Hernández, Adrián; Nácher, Verónica; Luna, Rogelio; Alvarez, Manuel; Zainos, Antonio; Cordero, Silvia; Camarillo, Liliana; Vázquez, Yuriria; Lemus, Luis; Romo, Ranulfo


    We report a procedure for recording the simultaneous activity of single neurons distributed across five cortical areas in behaving monkeys. The procedure consists of a commercially available microdrive adapted to a commercially available neural data collection system. The critical advantage of this procedure is that, in each cortical area, a configuration of seven microelectrodes spaced 250–500 μm can be inserted transdurally and each can be moved independently in the z axis. For each microelectrode, the data collection system can record the activity of up to five neurons together with the local field potential (LFP). With this procedure, we normally monitor the simultaneous activity of 70–100 neurons while trained monkeys discriminate the difference in frequency between two vibrotactile stimuli. Approximately 20–60 of these neurons have response properties previously reported in this task. The neuronal recordings show good signal-to-noise ratio, are remarkably stable along a 1-day session, and allow testing several protocols. Microelectrodes are removed from the brain after a 1-day recording session, but are reinserted again the next day by using the same or different x-y microelectrode array configurations. The fact that microelectrodes can be moved in the z axis during the recording session and that the x-y configuration can be changed from day to day maximizes the probability of studying simultaneous interactions, both local and across distant cortical areas, between neurons associated with the different components of this task. PMID:18946031

  11. Behavioral detection of intra-cortical microstimulation in the primary and secondary auditory cortex of cats

    Zhenling eZhao


    Full Text Available Although neural responses to sound stimuli have been thoroughly investigated in various areas of the auditory cortex, the results electrophysiological recordings cannot establish a causal link between neural activation and brain function. Electrical microstimulation, which can selectively perturb neural activity in specific parts of the nervous system, is an important tool for exploring the organization and function of brain circuitry. To date, the studies describing the behavioral effects of electrical stimulation have largely been conducted in the primary auditory cortex. In this study, to investigate the potential differences in the effects of electrical stimulation on different cortical areas, we measured the behavioral performance of cats in detecting intra-cortical microstimulation (ICMS delivered in the primary and secondary auditory fields (A1 and A2, respectively. After being trained to perform a Go/No-Go task cued by sounds, we found that cats could also learn to perform the task cued by ICMS; furthermore, the detection of the ICMS was similarly sensitive in A1 and A2. Presenting wideband noise together with ICMS substantially decreased the performance of cats in detecting ICMS in A1 and A2, consistent with a noise masking effect on the sensation elicited by the ICMS. In contrast, presenting ICMS with pure-tones in the spectral receptive field of the electrode-implanted cortical site reduced ICMS detection performance in A1 but not A2. Therefore, activation of A1 and A2 neurons may produce different qualities of sensation. Overall, our study revealed that ICMS-induced neural activity could be easily integrated into an animal’s behavioral decision process and had an implication for the development of cortical auditory prosthetics.

  12. Simultaneous measurement of neuronal activity and cortical hemodynamics by unshielded magnetoencephalography and near-infrared spectroscopy

    Seki, Yusuke; Miyashita, Tsuyoshi; Kandori, Akihiko; Maki, Atsushi; Koizumi, Hideaki


    The correlation between neuronal activity and cortical hemodynamics, namely, neurovascular coupling (NVC), is important to shed light on the mechanism of a variety of brain functions or neuronal diseases. NVC can be studied by simultaneously measuring neuronal activity and cortical hemodynamics. Consequently, noninvasive measurements of the NVC have been widely studied using both electroencephalography (EEG) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). However, electromagnetic interference between EEG and fMRI is still a major problem. On the other hand, near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) is another promising tool for detecting cortical hemodynamics because it can be combined with EEG or magnetoencephalography (MEG) without any electromagnetic interference. Accordingly, in the present study, a simultaneous measurement system-combining an unshielded MEG using a two-dimensional gradiometer based on a low-T superconducting quantum interference device (SQUID) and an NIRS using nonmagnetic thin probes-was developed. This combined system was used to simultaneously measure both an auditory-evoked magnetic field and blood flow change in the auditory cortex. It was experimentally demonstrated that the combined unshielded MEG/NIRS system can simultaneously measure neuronal activity and cortical hemodynamics.

  13. Tangential migration of glutamatergic neurons and cortical patterning during development: Lessons from Cajal-Retzius cells.

    Barber, Melissa; Pierani, Alessandra


    Tangential migration is a mode of cell movement, which in the developing cerebral cortex, is defined by displacement parallel to the ventricular surface and orthogonal to the radial glial fibers. This mode of long-range migration is a strategy by which distinct neuronal classes generated from spatially and molecularly distinct origins can integrate to form appropriate neural circuits within the cortical plate. While it was previously believed that only GABAergic cortical interneurons migrate tangentially from their origins in the subpallial ganglionic eminences to integrate in the cortical plate, it is now known that transient populations of glutamatergic neurons also adopt this mode of migration. These include Cajal-Retzius cells (CRs), subplate neurons (SPs), and cortical plate transient neurons (CPTs), which have crucial roles in orchestrating the radial and tangential development of the embryonic cerebral cortex in a noncell-autonomous manner. While CRs have been extensively studied, it is only in the last decade that the molecular mechanisms governing their tangential migration have begun to be elucidated. To date, the mechanisms of SPs and CPTs tangential migration remain unknown. We therefore review the known signaling pathways, which regulate parameters of CRs migration including their motility, contact-redistribution and adhesion to the pial surface, and discuss this in the context of how CR migration may regulate their signaling activity in a spatial and temporal manner. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Develop Neurobiol 76: 847-881, 2016.

  14. Network bursts in cortical neuronal cultures: 'noise - versus pacemaker'- driven neural network simulations

    Gritsun, T.; Stegenga, J.; le Feber, Jakob; Rutten, Wim


    In this paper we address the issue of spontaneous bursting activity in cortical neuronal cultures and explain what might cause this collective behavior using computer simulations of two different neural network models. While the common approach to acivate a passive network is done by introducing

  15. Beyond laminar fate: toward a molecular classification of cortical projection/pyramidal neurons.

    Hevner, R.F.; Daza, R.A.; Rubenstein, J.L.; Stunnenberg, H.G.; Olavarria, J.F.; Englund, C.


    Cortical projection neurons exhibit diverse morphological, physiological, and molecular phenotypes, but it is unknown how many distinct types exist. Many projection cell phenotypes are associated with laminar fate (radial position), but each layer may also contain multiple types of projection cells.

  16. Regulation of Cerebral Cortical Size and Neuron Number by Fibroblast Growth Factors: Implications for Autism

    Vaccarino, Flora M.; Grigorenko, Elena L.; Smith, Karen Muller; Stevens, Hanna E.


    Increased brain size is common in children with autism spectrum disorders. Here we propose that an increased number of cortical excitatory neurons may underlie the increased brain volume, minicolumn pathology and excessive network excitability, leading to sensory hyper-reactivity and seizures, which are often found in autism. We suggest that…

  17. Interhemispheric interactions between the human primary somatosensory cortices.

    Patrick Ragert

    Full Text Available In the somatosensory domain it is still unclear at which processing stage information reaches the opposite hemispheres. Due to dense transcallosal connections, the secondary somatosensory cortex (S2 has been proposed to be the key candidate for interhemispheric information transfer. However, recent animal studies showed that the primary somatosensory cortex (S1 might as well account for interhemispheric information transfer. Using paired median nerve somatosensory evoked potential recordings in humans we tested the hypothesis that interhemispheric inhibitory interactions in the somatosensory system occur already in an early cortical processing stage such as S1. Conditioning right S1 by electrical median nerve (MN stimulation of the left MN (CS resulted in a significant reduction of the N20 response in the target (left S1 relative to a test stimulus (TS to the right MN alone when the interstimulus interval between CS and TS was between 20 and 25 ms. No such changes were observed for later cortical components such as the N20/P25, N30, P40 and N60 amplitude. Additionally, the subcortically generated P14 response in left S1 was also not affected. These results document the existence of interhemispheric inhibitory interactions between S1 in human subjects in the critical time interval of 20-25 ms after median nerve stimulation.

  18. Coconut oil attenuates the effects of amyloid-β on cortical neurons in vitro.

    Nafar, Firoozeh; Mearow, Karen M


    Dietary supplementation has been studied as an approach to ameliorating deficits associated with aging and neurodegeneration. We undertook this pilot study to investigate the effects of coconut oil supplementation directly on cortical neurons treated with amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide in vitro. Our results indicate that neuron survival in cultures co-treated with coconut oil and Aβ is rescued compared to cultures exposed only to Aβ. Coconut oil co-treatment also attenuates Aβ-induced mitochondrial alterations. The results of this pilot study provide a basis for further investigation of the effects of coconut oil, or its constituents, on neuronal survival focusing on mechanisms that may be involved.

  19. Autaptic self-inhibition of cortical GABAergic neurons: synaptic narcissism or useful introspection?

    Deleuze, Charlotte; Pazienti, Antonio; Bacci, Alberto


    Fast synaptic inhibition sculpts all forms of cortical activity by means of a specialized connectivity pattern between highly heterogeneous inhibitory interneurons and principal excitatory cells. Importantly, inhibitory neurons connect also to each other extensively, following a detailed blueprint, and, indeed, specific forms of disinhibition affect important behavioral functions. Here we discuss a peculiar form of cortical disinhibition: the massive autaptic self-inhibition of parvalbumin-(PV) positive basket cells. Despite being described long ago, autaptic inhibition onto PV basket cells is rarely included in cortical circuit diagrams, perhaps because of its still elusive function. We propose here a potential dual role of autaptic feedback inhibition in temporally coordinating PV basket cells during cortical network activity.

  20. Effects of the analgesic acetaminophen (Paracetamol) and its para-aminophenol metabolite on viability of mouse-cultured cortical neurons.

    Schultz, Stephen; DeSilva, Mauris; Gu, Ting Ting; Qiang, Mei; Whang, Kyumin


    Acetaminophen has been used as an analgesic for more than a hundred years, but its mechanism of action has remained elusive. Recently, it has been shown that acetaminophen produces analgesia by the activation of the brain endocannabinoid receptor CB1 through its para-aminophenol (p-aminophenol) metabolite. The objective of this study was to determine whether p-aminophenol could be toxic for in vitro developing mouse cortical neurons as a first step in establishing a link between acetaminophen use and neuronal apoptosis. We exposed developing mouse cortical neurons to various concentrations of drugs for 24 hr in vitro. Acetaminophen itself was not toxic to developing mouse cortical neurons at therapeutic concentrations of 10-250 μg/ml. However, concentrations of p-aminophenol from 1 to 100 μg/ml produced significant (p < 0.05) loss of mouse cortical neuron viability at 24 hr compared to the controls. The naturally occurring endocannabinoid anandamide also caused similar 24-hr loss of cell viability in developing mouse cortical neurons at concentrations from 1 to 100 μg/ml, which indicates the mechanism of cell death could be through the cannabinoid receptors. The results of our experiments have shown a detrimental effect of the acetaminophen metabolite p-aminophenol on in vitro developing cortical neuron viability which could act through CB1 receptors of the endocannabinoid system. These results could be especially important in recommending an analgesic for children or individuals with traumatic brain injury who have developing cortical neurons.

  1. Cortical GABAergic neurons are more severely impaired by alkalosis than acidosis


    Background Acid–base imbalance in various metabolic disturbances leads to human brain dysfunction. Compared with acidosis, the patients suffered from alkalosis demonstrate more severe neurological signs that are difficultly corrected. We hypothesize a causative process that the nerve cells in the brain are more vulnerable to alkalosis than acidosis. Methods The vulnerability of GABAergic neurons to alkalosis versus acidosis was compared by analyzing their functional changes in response to the extracellular high pH and low pH. The neuronal and synaptic functions were recorded by whole-cell recordings in the cortical slices. Results The elevation or attenuation of extracellular pH impaired these GABAergic neurons in terms of their capability to produce spikes, their responsiveness to excitatory synaptic inputs and their outputs via inhibitory synapses. Importantly, the dysfunction of these active properties appeared severer in alkalosis than acidosis. Conclusions The severer impairment of cortical GABAergic neurons in alkalosis patients leads to more critical neural excitotoxicity, so that alkalosis-induced brain dysfunction is difficultly corrected, compared to acidosis. The vulnerability of cortical GABAergic neurons to high pH is likely a basis of severe clinical outcomes in alkalosis versus acidosis. PMID:24314112

  2. Salidroside protects cortical neurons against glutamate-induced cytotoxicity by inhibiting autophagy.

    Yin, Wei-Yong; Ye, Qiang; Huang, Huan-Jie; Xia, Nian-Ge; Chen, Yan-Yan; Zhang, Yi; Qu, Qiu-Min


    Recent evidence suggests that glutamate-induced cytotoxicity contributes to autophagic neuron death and is partially mediated by increased oxidative stress. Salidroside has been demonstrated to have neuroprotective effects in glutamate-induced neuronal damage. The precise mechanism of its regulatory role in neuronal autophagy is, however, poorly understood. This study aimed to probe the effects and mechanisms of salidroside in glutamate-induced autophagy activation in cultured rat cortical neurons. Cell viability assay, Western blotting, coimmunoprecipitation, and small interfering RNA were performed to analyze autophagy activities during glutamate-evoked oxidative injury. We found that salidroside protected neonatal neurons from glutamate-induced apoptotic cell death. Salidroside significantly attenuated the LC3-II/LC3-I ratio and expression of Beclin-1, but increased (SQSTM1)/p62 expression under glutamate exposure. Pretreatment with 3-methyladenine (3-MA), an autophagy inhibitor, decreased LC3-II/LC3-I ratio, attenuated glutamate-induced cell injury, and mimicked some of the protective effects of salidroside against glutamate-induced cell injury. Molecular analysis demonstrated that salidroside inhibited cortical neuron autophagy in response to glutamate exposure through p53 signaling by increasing the accumulation of cytoplasmic p53. Salidroside inhibited the glutamate-induced dissociation of the Bcl-2-Beclin-1 complex with minor affects on the PI3K/Akt/mTOR signaling pathways. These data demonstrate that the inhibition of autophagy could be responsible for the neuroprotective effects of salidroside on glutamate-induced neuronal injury.

  3. Towards a theory of cortical columns: From spiking neurons to interacting neural populations of finite size.

    Tilo Schwalger


    Full Text Available Neural population equations such as neural mass or field models are widely used to study brain activity on a large scale. However, the relation of these models to the properties of single neurons is unclear. Here we derive an equation for several interacting populations at the mesoscopic scale starting from a microscopic model of randomly connected generalized integrate-and-fire neuron models. Each population consists of 50-2000 neurons of the same type but different populations account for different neuron types. The stochastic population equations that we find reveal how spike-history effects in single-neuron dynamics such as refractoriness and adaptation interact with finite-size fluctuations on the population level. Efficient integration of the stochastic mesoscopic equations reproduces the statistical behavior of the population activities obtained from microscopic simulations of a full spiking neural network model. The theory describes nonlinear emergent dynamics such as finite-size-induced stochastic transitions in multistable networks and synchronization in balanced networks of excitatory and inhibitory neurons. The mesoscopic equations are employed to rapidly integrate a model of a cortical microcircuit consisting of eight neuron types, which allows us to predict spontaneous population activities as well as evoked responses to thalamic input. Our theory establishes a general framework for modeling finite-size neural population dynamics based on single cell and synapse parameters and offers an efficient approach to analyzing cortical circuits and computations.

  4. Development of Cortical GABAergic Neurons: Interplay of progenitor diversity and environmental factors on fate specification

    Juliana Alves Brandão


    Full Text Available Cortical GABAergic interneurons constitute an extremely diverse population of cells organized in a well-defined topology of precisely interconnected cells. They play a crucial role regulating inhibitory-excitatory balance in brain circuits, gating sensory perception and regulating spike timing to brain oscillations during distinct behaviors. Dysfunctions in the establishment of proper inhibitory circuits have been associated to several brain disorders such as autism, epilepsy and schizophrenia. In the rodent adult cortex, inhibitory neurons are generated during the second gestational week from distinct progenitor lineages located in restricted domains of the ventral telencephalon. However, only recently, studies have revealed some of the mechanisms generating the heterogeneity of neuronal subtypes and their modes of integration in brain networks. Here we will discuss some the events involved in the production of cortical GABAergic neuron diversity with focus on the interaction between intrinsically driven genetic programs and environmental signals during development.

  5. MicroRNA targeting of CoREST controls polarization of migrating cortical neurons.

    Volvert, Marie-Laure; Prévot, Pierre-Paul; Close, Pierre; Laguesse, Sophie; Pirotte, Sophie; Hemphill, James; Rogister, Florence; Kruzy, Nathalie; Sacheli, Rosalie; Moonen, Gustave; Deiters, Alexander; Merkenschlager, Matthias; Chariot, Alain; Malgrange, Brigitte; Godin, Juliette D; Nguyen, Laurent


    The migration of cortical projection neurons is a multistep process characterized by dynamic cell shape remodeling. The molecular basis of these changes remains elusive, and the present work describes how microRNAs (miRNAs) control neuronal polarization during radial migration. We show that miR-22 and miR-124 are expressed in the cortical wall where they target components of the CoREST/REST transcriptional repressor complex, thereby regulating doublecortin transcription in migrating neurons. This molecular pathway underlies radial migration by promoting dynamic multipolar-bipolar cell conversion at early phases of migration, and later stabilization of cell polarity to support locomotion on radial glia fibers. Thus, our work emphasizes key roles of some miRNAs that control radial migration during cerebral corticogenesis.

  6. Neurochemical, morphologic, and laminar characterization of cortical projection neurons in the cingulate motor areas of the macaque monkey

    Nimchinsky, E. A.; Hof, P. R.; Young, W. G.; Morrison, J. H.; Bloom, F. E. (Principal Investigator)


    The primate cingulate gyrus contains multiple cortical areas that can be distinguished by several neurochemical features, including the distribution of neurofilament protein-enriched pyramidal neurons. In addition, connectivity and functional properties indicate that there are multiple motor areas in the cortex lining the cingulate sulcus. These motor areas were targeted for analysis of potential interactions among regional specialization, connectivity, and cellular characteristics such as neurochemical profile and morphology. Specifically, intracortical injections of retrogradely transported dyes and intracellular injection were combined with immunocytochemistry to investigate neurons projecting from the cingulate motor areas to the putative forelimb region of the primary motor cortex, area M1. Two separate groups of neurons projecting to area M1 emanated from the cingulate sulcus, one anterior and one posterior, both of which furnished commissural and ipsilateral connections with area M1. The primary difference between the two populations was laminar origin, with the anterior projection originating largely in deep layers, and the posterior projection taking origin equally in superficial and deep layers. With regard to cellular morphology, the anterior projection exhibited more morphologic diversity than the posterior projection. Commissural projections from both anterior and posterior fields originated largely in layer VI. Neurofilament protein distribution was a reliable tool for localizing the two projections and for discriminating between them. Comparable proportions of the two sets of projection neurons contained neurofilament protein, although the density and distribution of the total population of neurofilament protein-enriched neurons was very different in the two subareas of origin. Within a projection, the participating neurons exhibited a high degree of morphologic heterogeneity, and no correlation was observed between somatodendritic morphology and

  7. Correction: Understanding metal homeostasis in primary cultured neurons. Studies using single neuron subcellular and quantitative metallomics.

    Colvin, Robert A; Lai, Barry; Holmes, William R; Lee, Daewoo


    Correction for 'Understanding metal homeostasis in primary cultured neurons. Studies using single neuron subcellular and quantitative metallomics' by Robert A. Colvin et al., Metallomics, 2015, 7, 1111-1123.

  8. A large scale simulation of excitation propagation in layer 2/3 of primary and secondary visual cortices of mice.

    Ohtsu, Shoya; Nomura, Taishin; Uno, Shota; Maeda, Kazuki; Hayashida, Yuki; Yagi, Tetsuya


    Analyzing network architecture and spatio-temporal dynamics of the visual cortical areas can facilitate understanding visual information processing in the brain. Recently, several physiological experiments utilizing the fast in-vivo imaging technique have demonstrated that the primary visual cortex (V1) and the secondary visual cortex (V2) in mice exhibit complex properties of the responses to visual and electrical stimuli. In order to provide a tool for quantitatively analyzing such a complex dynamics of the cortices at the level of neurons and circuits, here, we constructed a physiologically plausible large-scale network model of the layers 2/3 of V1 and V2, composed of 14,056 multi-compartment neuron models. The Message-Passing-Interface-based parallel simulations of our network model were able to reproduce, at least quantitatively, the neural responses experimentally observed in mouse V1 and V2 with the voltage-sensitive dye imaging.

  9. Huntingtin-Mediated Multipolar-Bipolar Transition of Newborn Cortical Neurons Is Critical for Their Postnatal Neuronal Morphology.

    Barnat, Monia; Le Friec, Julien; Benstaali, Caroline; Humbert, Sandrine


    In the developing cortex, projection neurons undergo multipolar-bipolar transition, radial-directed migration, and maturation. The contribution of these developmental steps to the structure of the adult cortex is not completely understood. Here, we report that huntingtin (HTT), the protein mutated in Huntington's disease, is enriched in polarizing projection neurons. The depletion of HTT in postmitotic projection neurons leads to the mislocalization of layer-specific neuronal populations in the mouse neocortex. HTT is required for the multipolar-bipolar transition of projection neurons and for the maintenance of their bipolar shape during their radial migration. HTT mediates these effects in vivo through the regulation of RAB11-dependent N-Cadherin trafficking. Importantly, HD pathological HTT alters RAB11-dependent neuronal migration. Finally, we show that the cortical defects resulting from the postmitotic loss of HTT specifically during embryonic development affect neuronal morphology at adulthood. Our data reveal a new HTT-RAB11-N-Cadherin pathway regulating multipolar-bipolar transition with direct implications for mature brain. VIDEO ABSTRACT.

  10. Cortical hypoexcitation defines neuronal responses in the immediate aftermath of traumatic brain injury.

    Victoria Philippa Anne Johnstone

    Full Text Available Traumatic brain injury (TBI from a blow to the head is often associated with complex patterns of brain abnormalities that accompany deficits in cognitive and motor function. Previously we reported that a long-term consequence of TBI, induced with a closed-head injury method modelling human car and sporting accidents, is neuronal hyper-excitation in the rat sensory barrel cortex that receives tactile input from the face whiskers. Hyper-excitation occurred only in supra-granular layers and was stronger to complex than simple stimuli. We now examine changes in the immediate aftermath of TBI induced with same injury method. At 24 hours post-trauma significant sensorimotor deficits were observed and characterisation of the cortical population neuronal responses at that time revealed a depth-dependent suppression of neuronal responses, with reduced responses from supragranular layers through to input layer IV, but not in infragranular layers. In addition, increased spontaneous firing rate was recorded in cortical layers IV and V. We postulate that this early post-injury suppression of cortical processing of sensory input accounts for immediate post-trauma sensory morbidity and sets into train events that resolve into long-term cortical hyper-excitability in upper sensory cortex layers that may account for long-term sensory hyper-sensitivity in humans with TBI.

  11. The release of glutamate from cortical neurons regulated by BDNF via the TrkB/Src/PLC-γ1 pathway.

    Zhang, Zitao; Fan, Jin; Ren, Yongxin; Zhou, Wei; Yin, Guoyong


    The brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) participates in the regulation of cortical neurons by influencing the release of glutamate. However, the specific mechanisms are unclear. Hence, we isolated and cultured the cortical neurons of Sprague Dawley rats. Specific inhibitors of TrkB, Src, PLC-γ1, Akt, and MEK1/2 (i.e., K252a, PP2, U73122, LY294002, and PD98059, respectively) were used to treat cortical neurons and to detect the glutamate release from cortical neurons stimulated with BDNF. BDNF significantly increased glutamate release, and simultaneously enhanced phosphorylation levels of TrkB, Src, PLC-γ, Akt, and Erk1/2. For BDNF-stimulated cortical neurons, K252a inhibited glutamate release and inhibited the phosphorylation levels of TrkB, Src, PLC-γ, Erk1/2, and Akt (P PLC-γ1 (P 0.05). U73122 inhibited the glutamate release from BDNF-stimulated cortical neurons, but had no influence on the phosphorylation levels of TrkB, Src, Erk1/2, or Akt (P > 0.05). LY294002 and PD98059 did not affect the BDNF-stimulated glutamate release and did not inhibit the phosphorylation levels of TrkB, Src, or PLC-γ1. In summary, BDNF stimulated the glutamate release from cortical neurons via the TrkB/Src/PLC-γ1 signaling pathway.

  12. Network-state modulation of power-law frequency-scaling in visual cortical neurons.

    El Boustani, Sami; Marre, Olivier; Béhuret, Sébastien; Baudot, Pierre; Yger, Pierre; Bal, Thierry; Destexhe, Alain; Frégnac, Yves


    Various types of neural-based signals, such as EEG, local field potentials and intracellular synaptic potentials, integrate multiple sources of activity distributed across large assemblies. They have in common a power-law frequency-scaling structure at high frequencies, but it is still unclear whether this scaling property is dominated by intrinsic neuronal properties or by network activity. The latter case is particularly interesting because if frequency-scaling reflects the network state it could be used to characterize the functional impact of the connectivity. In intracellularly recorded neurons of cat primary visual cortex in vivo, the power spectral density of V(m) activity displays a power-law structure at high frequencies with a fractional scaling exponent. We show that this exponent is not constant, but depends on the visual statistics used to drive the network. To investigate the determinants of this frequency-scaling, we considered a generic recurrent model of cortex receiving a retinotopically organized external input. Similarly to the in vivo case, our in computo simulations show that the scaling exponent reflects the correlation level imposed in the input. This systematic dependence was also replicated at the single cell level, by controlling independently, in a parametric way, the strength and the temporal decay of the pairwise correlation between presynaptic inputs. This last model was implemented in vitro by imposing the correlation control in artificial presynaptic spike trains through dynamic-clamp techniques. These in vitro manipulations induced a modulation of the scaling exponent, similar to that observed in vivo and predicted in computo. We conclude that the frequency-scaling exponent of the V(m) reflects stimulus-driven correlations in the cortical network activity. Therefore, we propose that the scaling exponent could be used to read-out the "effective" connectivity responsible for the dynamical signature of the population signals measured

  13. Network-state modulation of power-law frequency-scaling in visual cortical neurons.

    Sami El Boustani


    Full Text Available Various types of neural-based signals, such as EEG, local field potentials and intracellular synaptic potentials, integrate multiple sources of activity distributed across large assemblies. They have in common a power-law frequency-scaling structure at high frequencies, but it is still unclear whether this scaling property is dominated by intrinsic neuronal properties or by network activity. The latter case is particularly interesting because if frequency-scaling reflects the network state it could be used to characterize the functional impact of the connectivity. In intracellularly recorded neurons of cat primary visual cortex in vivo, the power spectral density of V(m activity displays a power-law structure at high frequencies with a fractional scaling exponent. We show that this exponent is not constant, but depends on the visual statistics used to drive the network. To investigate the determinants of this frequency-scaling, we considered a generic recurrent model of cortex receiving a retinotopically organized external input. Similarly to the in vivo case, our in computo simulations show that the scaling exponent reflects the correlation level imposed in the input. This systematic dependence was also replicated at the single cell level, by controlling independently, in a parametric way, the strength and the temporal decay of the pairwise correlation between presynaptic inputs. This last model was implemented in vitro by imposing the correlation control in artificial presynaptic spike trains through dynamic-clamp techniques. These in vitro manipulations induced a modulation of the scaling exponent, similar to that observed in vivo and predicted in computo. We conclude that the frequency-scaling exponent of the V(m reflects stimulus-driven correlations in the cortical network activity. Therefore, we propose that the scaling exponent could be used to read-out the "effective" connectivity responsible for the dynamical signature of the population

  14. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor stimulates energy metabolism in developing cortical neurons.

    Burkhalter, Julia; Fiumelli, Hubert; Allaman, Igor; Chatton, Jean-Yves; Martin, Jean-Luc


    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) promotes the biochemical and morphological differentiation of selective populations of neurons during development. In this study we examined the energy requirements associated with the effects of BDNF on neuronal differentiation. Because glucose is the preferred energy substrate in the brain, the effect of BDNF on glucose utilization was investigated in developing cortical neurons via biochemical and imaging studies. Results revealed that BDNF increases glucose utilization and the expression of the neuronal glucose transporter GLUT3. Stimulation of glucose utilization by BDNF was shown to result from the activation of Na+/K+-ATPase via an increase in Na+ influx that is mediated, at least in part, by the stimulation of Na+-dependent amino acid transport. The increased Na+-dependent amino acid uptake by BDNF is followed by an enhancement of overall protein synthesis associated with the differentiation of cortical neurons. Together, these data demonstrate the ability of BDNF to stimulate glucose utilization in response to an enhanced energy demand resulting from increases in amino acid uptake and protein synthesis associated with the promotion of neuronal differentiation by BDNF.

  15. Cortical regulation of striatal projection neurons and interneurons in a Parkinson's disease rat model

    Jia-jia Wu


    Full Text Available Striatal neurons can be either projection neurons or interneurons, with each type exhibiting distinct susceptibility to various types of brain damage. In this study, 6-hydroxydopamine was injected into the right medial forebrain bundle to induce dopamine depletion, and/or ibotenic acid was injected into the M1 cortex to induce motor cortex lesions. Immunohistochemistry and western blot assay showed that dopaminergic depletion results in significant loss of striatal projection neurons marked by dopamine- and cyclic adenosine monophosphate-regulated phosphoprotein, molecular weight 32 kDa, calbindin, and μ-opioid receptor, while cortical lesions reversed these pathological changes. After dopaminergic deletion, the number of neuropeptide Y-positive striatal interneurons markedly increased, which was also inhibited by cortical lesioning. No noticeable change in the number of parvalbumin-positive interneurons was found in 6-hydroxydopamine-treated rats. Striatal projection neurons and interneurons show different susceptibility to dopaminergic depletion. Further, cortical lesions inhibit striatal dysfunction and damage induced by 6-hydroxydopamine, which provides a new possibility for clinical treatment of Parkinson's disease.

  16. Dynamics of cortical neuronal ensembles transit from decision making to storage for later report.

    Ponce-Alvarez, Adrián; Nácher, Verónica; Luna, Rogelio; Riehle, Alexa; Romo, Ranulfo


    Decisions based on sensory evaluation during single trials may depend on the collective activity of neurons distributed across brain circuits. Previous studies have deepened our understanding of how the activity of individual neurons relates to the formation of a decision and its storage for later report. However, little is known about how decision-making and decision maintenance processes evolve in single trials. We addressed this problem by studying the activity of simultaneously recorded neurons from different somatosensory and frontal lobe cortices of monkeys performing a vibrotactile discrimination task. We used the hidden Markov model to describe the spatiotemporal pattern of activity in single trials as a sequence of firing rate states. We show that the animal's decision was reliably maintained in frontal lobe activity through a selective state sequence, initiated by an abrupt state transition, during which many neurons changed their activity in a concomitant way, and for which both latency and variability depended on task difficulty. Indeed, transitions were more delayed and more variable for difficult trials compared with easy trials. In contrast, state sequences in somatosensory cortices were weakly decision related, had less variable transitions, and were not affected by the difficulty of the task. In summary, our results suggest that the decision process and its subsequent maintenance are dynamically linked by a cascade of transient events in frontal lobe cortices.

  17. Various tolerances to arsenic trioxide between human cortical neurons and leukemic cells

    ZHOU Jin; MENG Ran; SUI Xinhua; LI Wenbin; YANG Baofeng


    Arsenic trioxide (As2O3) is very effective for treatment of acute promyelocytic leukaemia (APL) but little can pass through the blood-brain-barrier (BBB),which limits its use in the prevention and treatment of central nervous system leukaemia (CNSL). Before creating a non-invasive method to help As2O3 's access, the safe and effective therapeutic concentration of As2O3 in the CNS ought to be known. The changes of apoptosis biomarkers, [Ca2+]i and PKC activity of both leukaemia cells and human cortical neurons, were monitored before and after being treated with As2O3 in vitro with laser confocal microscopy and Western blot. NSE concentration, the neuron invasive biomarker, was monitored by enzyme immunoassay (NSE-EIA). This study revealed that cortical neuron was more tolerable to As2O3 compared to NB4. 1.0 μmol / L As2O3 showed little influence on cortical neuron but effectively promoted apoptosis and induced differentiation of NB4.

  18. Cortico–Cortical Connections of Primary Sensory Areas and Associated Symptoms in Migraine

    Veggeberg, Rosanna; Wilcox, Sophie L.; Scrivani, Steven J.; Borsook, David


    Abstract Migraine is a recurring, episodic neurological disorder characterized by headache, nausea, vomiting, and sensory disturbances. These events are thought to arise from the activation and sensitization of neurons along the trigemino–vascular pathway. From animal studies, it is known that thalamocortical projections play an important role in the transmission of nociceptive signals from the meninges to the cortex. However, little is currently known about the potential involvement of cortico–cortical feedback projections from higher-order multisensory areas and/or feedforward projections from principle primary sensory areas or subcortical structures. In a large cohort of human migraine patients (N = 40) and matched healthy control subjects (N = 40), we used resting-state intrinsic functional connectivity to examine the cortical networks associated with the three main sensory perceptual modalities of vision, audition, and somatosensation. Specifically, we sought to explore the complexity of the sensory networks as they converge and become functionally coupled in multimodal systems. We also compared self-reported retrospective migraine symptoms in the same patients, examining the prevalence of sensory symptoms across the different phases of the migraine cycle. Our results show widespread and persistent disturbances in the perceptions of multiple sensory modalities. Consistent with this observation, we discovered that primary sensory areas maintain local functional connectivity but express impaired long-range connections to higher-order association areas (including regions of the default mode and salience network). We speculate that cortico–cortical interactions are necessary for the integration of information within and across the sensory modalities and, thus, could play an important role in the initiation of migraine and/or the development of its associated symptoms. PMID:28101529

  19. Bioreactor Transient Exposure Activates Specific Neurotrophic Pathway in Cortical Neurons

    Zimmitti, V.; Benedetti, E.; Caracciolo, V.; Sebastiani, P.; Di Loreto, S.


    Altered gravity forces might influence neuroplasticity and can provoke changes in biochemical mechanisms. In this contest, neurotrophins have a pivotal role, particularly nerve growth factor (NGF) and brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). A suspension of dissociated cortical cells from rat embryos was exposed to 24 h of microgravity before plating in normal adherent culture system. Expression and transductional signalling pathways of NGF and BDNF were assessed at the end of maturational process (8-10 days in vitro). Rotating wall vessel bioreactor (RWV) pre-exposition did not induce changes in NGF expression and its high affinity receptor TrkA. On the contrary both BDNF expression and its high affinity receptor TrkB were strongly up-regulated, inducing Erk-5, but not Erk-1/2 activation and, in turn, MEF2C over-expression and activation. According to our previous and present results, we postulate that relatively short microgravitational stimuli, applied to neural cells during the developmental stage, exert a long time activation of specific neurotrophic pathways.

  20. Minimum neuron density for synchronized bursts in a rat cortical culture on multi-electrode arrays.

    Ito, D; Tamate, H; Nagayama, M; Uchida, T; Kudoh, S N; Gohara, K


    To investigate the minimum neuron and neurite densities required for synchronized bursts, we cultured rat cortical neurons on planar multi-electrode arrays (MEAs) at five plating densities (2500, 1000, 500, 250, and 100 cells/mm(2)) using two culture media: Neuron Culture Medium and Dulbecco's Modified Eagle Medium supplemented with serum (DMEM/serum). Long-term recording of spontaneous electrical activity clarified that the cultures exhibiting synchronized bursts required an initial plating density of at least 250 cells/mm(2) for Neuron Culture Medium and 500 cells/mm(2) for DMEM/serum. Immediately after electrical recording, immunocytochemistry of microtubule-associated protein 2 (MAP2) and Neurofilament 200 kD (NF200) was performed directly on MEAs to investigate the actual densities of neurons and neurites forming the networks. Immunofluorescence observation revealed that the construction of complicated neuronal networks required the same initial plating density as for synchronized bursts, and that overly sparse cultures showed significant decreases of neurons and neurites. We also found that the final densities of surviving neurons at 1 month decreased greatly compared with the initial plating densities and became saturated in denser cultures. In addition, the area of neurites and the number of nuclei were saturated in denser cultures. By comparing both the results of electrophysiological recording and immunocytochemical observation, we revealed that there is a minimum threshold of neuron densities that must be met for the exhibition of synchronized bursts. Interestingly, these minimum densities of MAP2-positive final neurons did not differ between the two culture media; the density was approximately 50 neurons/mm(2). This value was obtained in the cultures with the initial plating densities of 250 cells/mm(2) for Neuron Culture Medium and 500 cells/mm(2) for DMEM/serum.

  1. In Vitro Studies of Primary Explosive Blast Loading on Neurons


    ARL-RP-0542 ● SEP 2015 US Army Research Laboratory In Vitro Studies of Primary Explosive Blast Loading on Neurons by Nicole E Zander, Thuvan...Research Laboratory In Vitro Studies of Primary Explosive Blast Loading on Neurons by Nicole E Zander, Thuvan Piehler, Rohan Banton, and Richard...

  2. FMRP regulates multipolar to bipolar transition affecting neuronal migration and cortical circuitry.

    La Fata, Giorgio; Gärtner, Annette; Domínguez-Iturza, Nuria; Dresselaers, Tom; Dawitz, Julia; Poorthuis, Rogier B; Averna, Michele; Himmelreich, Uwe; Meredith, Rhiannon M; Achsel, Tilmann; Dotti, Carlos G; Bagni, Claudia


    Deficiencies in fragile X mental retardation protein (FMRP) are the most common cause of inherited intellectual disability, fragile X syndrome (FXS), with symptoms manifesting during infancy and early childhood. Using a mouse model for FXS, we found that Fmrp regulates the positioning of neurons in the cortical plate during embryonic development, affecting their multipolar-to-bipolar transition (MBT). We identified N-cadherin, which is crucial for MBT, as an Fmrp-regulated target in embryonic brain. Furthermore, spontaneous network activity and high-resolution brain imaging revealed defects in the establishment of neuronal networks at very early developmental stages, further confirmed by an unbalanced excitatory and inhibitory network. Finally, reintroduction of Fmrp or N-cadherin in the embryo normalized early postnatal neuron activity. Our findings highlight the critical role of Fmrp in the developing cerebral cortex and might explain some of the clinical features observed in patients with FXS, such as alterations in synaptic communication and neuronal network connectivity.

  3. Poloxamer-188 and citicoline provide neuronal membrane integrity and protect membrane stability in cortical spreading depression.

    Yıldırım, Timur; Eylen, Alpaslan; Lule, Sevda; Erdener, Sefik Evren; Vural, Atay; Karatas, Hulya; Ozveren, Mehmet Faik; Dalkara, Turgay; Gursoy-Ozdemir, Yasemin


    Under pathological conditions such as brain trauma, subarachnoid hemorrhage and stroke, cortical spreading depression (CSD) or peri-infarct depolarizations contribute to brain damage in animal models of neurological disorders as well as in human neurological diseases. CSD causes transient megachannel opening on the neuronal membrane, which may compromise neuronal survival under pathological conditions. Poloxamer-188 (P-188) and citicoline are neuroprotectants with membrane sealing properties. The aim of this study is to investigate the effect of P-188 and citicoline on the neuronal megachannel opening induced by CSD in the mouse brain. We have monitored megachannel opening with propidium iodide, a membrane impermeable fluorescent dye and, demonstrate that P-188 and citicoline strikingly decreased CSD-induced neuronal PI influx in cortex and hippocampal dentate gyrus. Therefore, these agents may be providing neuroprotection by blocking megachannel opening, which may be related to their membrane sealing action and warrant further investigation for treatment of traumatic brain injury and ischemic stroke.

  4. Changes in long-range connectivity and neuronal reorganization in partial cortical deafferentation model of epileptogenesis.

    Kuśmierczak, M; Lajeunesse, F; Grand, L; Timofeev, I


    Severe brain injuries can trigger epileptogenesis, a latent period that eventually leads to epilepsy. Previous studies have demonstrated that changes in local connectivity between cortical neurons are a part of the epileptogenic processes. In the present study we aimed to investigate whether changes in long-range connectivity are also involved in epileptogenesis. We performed a large unilateral transection (undercut) of the white matter below the suprasylvian gyrus in cats. After about 2 months, we either injected retrograde tracer (cholera toxin, sub-unit B, CTB) or performed Golgi staining. We analyzed distribution of retrogradely labeled neurons, counted dendritic spines in the neocortex (Golgi staining), and analyzed dendritic orientation in control conditions and after the injury. We found a significant increase in the number of detected cells at the frontal parts of the injured hemisphere, which suggests that the process of axonal sprouting occurs in the deafferented area. The increase in the number of retrogradely stained neurons was accompanied with a significant decrease in neocortical spine density in the undercut area, a reduction in vertical and an increase in horizontal orientation of neuronal processes. The present study shows global morphological changes underlying epileptogenesis. An increased connectivity in the injured cortical regions accompanied with a decrease in spine density suggests that excitatory synapses might be formed on dendritic shafts, which probably contributes to the altered neuronal excitability that was described in previous studies on epileptogenesis.

  5. Early involvement of lysosome dysfunction in the degeneration of cerebral cortical neurons caused by the lipid peroxidation product 4-hydroxynonenal.

    Zhang, Shi; Eitan, Erez; Mattson, Mark P


    Free radical-mediated oxidative damage to proteins, lipids, and DNA occurs in neurons during acute brain injuries and in neurodegenerative disorders. Membrane lipid peroxidation contributes to neuronal dysfunction and death, in part by disrupting neuronal ion homeostasis and cellular bioenergetics. Emerging findings suggest that 4-hydroxynonenal (HNE), an aldehyde produced during lipid peroxidation, impairs the function of various proteins involved in neuronal homeostasis. Here we tested the hypothesis that HNE impairs the cellular system that removes damaged proteins and organelles, the autophagy-lysosome pathway in rat primary cortical neurons. We found that HNE, at a concentration that causes apoptosis over a 48-72 h period, increases protein levels of LC3 II and p62 and within 1 and 4 h of exposure, respectively; LC3 II and p62 immunoreactive puncta were observed in the cytoplasm of HNE-treated neurons at 6 h. The extent of up-regulation of p62 and LC3 II in response to HNE was not affected by co-treatment with the lysosome inhibitor bafilomycin A1, suggesting that the effects of HNE on autophagy were secondary to lysosome inhibition. Indeed, we found that neurons exposed to HNE exhibit elevated pH levels, and decreased protein substrate hydrolysis and cathepsin B activity. Neurons exposed to HNE also exhibited the accumulation of K63-linked polyubiquitinated proteins, which are substrates targeted for lysosomal degradation. Moreover, we found that the levels of LAMP2a and constitutively active heat-shock protein 70, and numbers of LAMP2a-positive lysosomes, are decreased in neurons exposed to HNE. Our findings demonstrate that the lipid peroxidation product HNE causes early impairment of lysosomes which may contribute to the accumulation of damaged and dysfunctional proteins and organelles and consequent neuronal death. Because impaired lysosome function is increasingly recognized as an early event in the neuronal death that occurs in neurodegenerative

  6. Calcium imaging of cortical neurons using Fura-2 AM.

    Barreto-Chang, Odmara L; Dolmetsch, Ricardo E


    Calcium imaging is a common technique that is useful for measuring calcium signals in cultured cells. Calcium imaging techniques take advantage of calcium indicator dyes, which are BAPTA-based organic molecules that change their spectral properties in response to the binding of Ca2+ ions. Calcium indicator dyes fall into two categories, ratio-metric dyes like Fura-2 and Indo-1 and single-wavelength dyes like Fluo-4. Ratio-metric dyes change either their excitation or their emission spectra in response to calcium, allowing the concentration of intracellular calcium to be determined from the ratio of fluorescence emission or excitation at distinct wavelengths. The main advantage of using ratio-metric dyes over single wavelength probes is that the ratio signal is independent of the dye concentration, illumination intensity, and optical path length allowing the concentration of intracellular calcium to be determined independently of these artifacts. One of the most common calcium indicators is Fura-2, which has an emission peak at 505 nM and changes its excitation peak from 340 nm to 380 nm in response to calcium binding. Here we describe the use of Fura-2 to measure intracellular calcium elevations in neurons and other excitable cells.

  7. The adaptation of spike backpropagation delays in cortical neurons

    Yossi eBuskila


    Full Text Available We measured the action potential backpropagation delays in apical dendrites of layer 5 pyramidal neurons of the somatosensory cortex under different stimulation regimes that exclude synaptic involvement. These delays showed robust features and did not correlate to either transient change in the stimulus strength or low frequency stimulation of suprathreshold membrane oscillations. However, our results indicate that backpropagation delays correlate with high frequency (>10 Hz stimulation of membrane oscillations, and that persistent suprathreshold sinusoidal stimulation injected directly into the soma results in an increase of the backpropagation delay, suggesting an intrinsic adaptation of the bAP, which does not involve any synaptic modifications. Moreover, the calcium chelator BAPTA eliminated the alterations in the backpropagation delays, strengthening the hypothesis that increased calcium concentration in the dendrites modulates dendritic excitability and can impact the backpropagation velocity. These results emphasize the impact of dendritic excitability on bAP velocity along the dendritic tree, which affects the precision of the bAP arrival at the synapse during specific stimulus regimes, and is capable of shifting the extent and polarity of synaptic strength during suprathreshold synaptic processes such as STDP.

  8. Attentional Modulation of Primary Interoceptive and Exteroceptive Cortices

    Segal, Zindel V.; Anderson, Adam K.


    How exteroceptive attention (EA) alters neural representations of the external world is well characterized, yet little is known about how interoceptive attention (IA) alters neural representations of the body's internal state. We contrasted visual EA against IA toward respiration. Visual EA modulated striate and extrastriate cortices and a lateral frontoparietal “executive” network. By contrast, respiratory IA modulated a posterior insula region sensitive to respiratory frequency, consistent with primary interoceptive cortex, and a posterior limbic and medial parietal network, including the hippocampus, precuneus, and midcingulate cortex. Further distinguishing between EA and IA networks, attention-dependent connectivity analyses revealed that EA enhanced visual cortex connectivity with the inferior parietal lobule and pulvinar of the thalamus, while IA enhanced insula connectivity with the posterior ventromedial thalamus, a relay of the laminar I spinothalamocortical pathway supporting interoceptive afference. Despite strong connectivity between the posterior and the anterior insula, anatomical parcellation of the insula revealed a gradient of IA to EA recruitment along its posterior–anterior axis. These results suggest that distinct networks may support EA and IA. Furthermore, the anterior insula is not an area of pure body awareness but may link representations of the outside world with the body's internal state—a potential basis for emotional experience. PMID:22267308

  9. Cortico-cortical interactions influence binocularity of the primary visual cortex of adult mice.

    Susanne Dehmel

    Full Text Available Electrophysiological studies have revealed that a large proportion of the mouse primary visual cortex (V1 receives input also from the ipsilateral eye. This is surprising as most optic nerve fibers cross at the optic chiasm in mice. Inactivating V1 of one hemisphere has recently demonstrated a strong contribution of one hemisphere's activity on binocularity of single units and visually evoked potentials of V1 in the other hemisphere of young rats and of single units in young adult mice. Here we used intrinsic signal optical imaging to quantitatively study the influence of cortico-cortical connections on the magnitude of neuronal activation in the entire binocular zone of adult mouse V1. We simultaneously measured V1-activity of both hemispheres in adult C57BL/6J mice before and after blocking sensory-driven activity in one hemisphere with muscimol. In V1 contralateral to the inactivation, ipsilateral eye evoked activity was reduced by on average 18% while contralateral eye evoked activity did not change. Our results clearly show that cortico-cortical interactions exert a global amplification of ipsilateral eye evoked activity in adult mouse V1.

  10. Membrane potential dynamics of populations of cortical neurons during auditory streaming.

    Farley, Brandon J; Noreña, Arnaud J


    How a mixture of acoustic sources is perceptually organized into discrete auditory objects remains unclear. One current hypothesis postulates that perceptual segregation of different sources is related to the spatiotemporal separation of cortical responses induced by each acoustic source or stream. In the present study, the dynamics of subthreshold membrane potential activity were measured across the entire tonotopic axis of the rodent primary auditory cortex during the auditory streaming paradigm using voltage-sensitive dye imaging. Consistent with the proposed hypothesis, we observed enhanced spatiotemporal segregation of cortical responses to alternating tone sequences as their frequency separation or presentation rate was increased, both manipulations known to promote stream segregation. However, across most streaming paradigm conditions tested, a substantial cortical region maintaining a response to both tones coexisted with more peripheral cortical regions responding more selectively to one of them. We propose that these coexisting subthreshold representation types could provide neural substrates to support the flexible switching between the integrated and segregated streaming percepts.

  11. Antioxidant and Protective Mechanisms against Hypoxia and Hypoglycaemia in Cortical Neurons in Vitro

    José Joaquín Merino


    Full Text Available In the present work, we have studied whether cell death could be induced in cortical neurons from rats subjected to different period of O2 deprivation and low glucose (ODLG. This “in vitro” model is designed to emulate the penumbra area under ischemia. In these conditions, cortical neurons displayed loss of mitochondrial respiratory ability however, nor necrosis neither apoptosis occurred despite ROS production. The absence of cellular death could be a consequence of increased antioxidant responses such as superoxide dismutase-1 (SOD1 and GPX3. In addition, the levels of reduced glutathione were augmented and HIF-1/3α overexpressed. After long periods of ODLG (12–24 h cortical neurons showed cellular and mitochondrial membrane alterations and did not recuperate cellular viability during reperfusion. This could mean that therapies directed toward prevention of cellular and mitochondrial membrane imbalance or cell death through mechanisms other than necrosis or apoptosis, like authophagy, may be a way to prevent ODLG damage.

  12. Cyclooxygenase-2 contributes to VX-induced cell death in cultured cortical neurons.

    Tenn, Catherine C; Weiss, M Tracy; Beaup, Claire; Peinnequin, Andre; Wang, Yushan; Dorandeu, Frederic


    The link between cell death and increased cyclooxygenases-2 (COX-2) activity has not been clearly established. In this study, we examined whether COX-2 activation contributed to the mechanism of neurotoxicity produced by an organophosphorous nerve agent in cultured rat cortical neurons. Exposure of neuronal cells to the nerve agent, VX resulted in an increase in COX enzyme activity in the culture media. A concentration dependent increase in the activity levels of COX-2 enzyme was observed while there was little to no effect on COX-1. In addition, COX-2 mRNA and protein levels increased several hours post-VX exposure. Pre-treatment of the cortical cells with the COX-2 selective inhibitor, NS 398 resulted in a decrease in both the enzyme activity and prostaglandin (PGE(2) and PGF(2α)) release, as well as in a reduction in cell death. These findings indicate that the increase in COX-2 activity may contribute to the mechanism of VX-induced neurotoxicity in cultured rat cortical neuron.

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

    Rachel D Penrod


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

  14. Glucose and lactate are equally effective in energizing activity-dependent synaptic vesicle turnover in purified cortical neurons.

    Morgenthaler, F D; Kraftsik, R; Catsicas, S; Magistretti, P J; Chatton, J-Y


    This study examines the role of glucose and lactate as energy substrates to sustain synaptic vesicle cycling. Synaptic vesicle turnover was assessed in a quantitative manner by fluorescence microscopy in primary cultures of mouse cortical neurons. An electrode-equipped perfusion chamber was used to stimulate cells both by electrical field and potassium depolarization during image acquisition. An image analysis procedure was elaborated to select in an unbiased manner synaptic boutons loaded with the fluorescent dye N-(3-triethylammoniumpropyl)-4-(4-(dibutylamino)styryl)pyridinium dibromide (FM1-43). Whereas a minority of the sites fully released their dye content following electrical stimulation, others needed subsequent K(+) depolarization to achieve full release. This functional heterogeneity was not significantly altered by the nature of metabolic substrates. Repetitive stimulation sequences of FM1-43 uptake and release were then performed in the absence of any metabolic substrate and showed that the number of active sites dramatically decreased after the first cycle of loading/unloading. The presence of 1 mM glucose or lactate was sufficient to sustain synaptic vesicle cycling under these conditions. Moreover, both substrates were equivalent for recovery of function after a phase of decreased metabolic substrate availability. Thus, lactate appears to be equivalent to glucose for sustaining synaptic vesicle turnover in cultured cortical neurons during activity.

  15. Local connections of excitatory neurons in motor-associated cortical areas of the rat

    Kaneko, Takeshi


    In spite of recent progress in brain sciences, the local circuit of the cerebral neocortex, including motor areas, still remains elusive. Morphological works on excitatory cortical circuitry from thalamocortical (TC) afferents to corticospinal neurons (CSNs) in motor-associated areas are reviewed here. First, TC axons of motor thalamic nuclei have been re-examined by the single-neuron labeling method. There are middle layer (ML)-targeting and layer (L) 1-preferring TC axon types in motor-associated areas, being analogous to core and matrix types, respectively, of Jones (1998) in sensory areas. However, the arborization of core-like motor TC axons spreads widely and disregards the columnar structure that is the basis of information processing in sensory areas, suggesting that motor areas adopt a different information-processing framework such as area-wide laminar organization. Second, L5 CSNs receive local excitatory inputs not only from L2/3 pyramidal neurons but also from ML spiny neurons, the latter directly processing cerebellar information of core-like TC neurons (TCNs). In contrast, basal ganglia information is targeted to apical dendrites of L2/3 and L5 pyramidal neurons through matrix TCNs. Third, L6 corticothalamic neurons (CTNs) are most densely innervated by ML spiny neurons located just above CTNs. Since CTNs receive only weak connections from L2/3 and L5 pyramidal neurons, the TC recurrent circuit composed of TCNs, ML spiny neurons and CTNs appears relatively independent of the results of processing in L2/3 and L5. It is proposed that two circuits sharing the same TC projection and ML neurons are embedded in the neocortex: one includes L2/3 and L5 neurons, processes afferent information in a feedforward way and sends the processed information to other cortical areas and subcortical regions; and the other circuit participates in a dynamical system of the TC recurrent circuit and may serve as the basis of autonomous activity of the neocortex. PMID

  16. Axonal shearing in mature cortical neurons induces attempted regeneration and the reestablishment of neurite polarity.

    Blizzard, Catherine A; King, Anna E; Haas, Matilda A; O'Toole, David A; Vickers, James C; Dickson, Tracey C


    While functional recovery after injury is limited, it has become evident that the mature central nervous system does retain some ability to regenerate. This study investigated the intrinsic capacity of relatively mature cortical neurons (21 days in vitro) to respond to axonal loss. Neurons, growing as clusters on poly-L-lysine, were completely sheared of axons through chemical and mechanical disruption and transferred to either an intact astrocyte monolayer or a substrate of poly-L-lysine. Injured neurons exhibited a regenerative sprouting response that was independent of neuronal cell division or neural progenitors, as demonstrated by negative bromodeoxyuridine (BrdU) and the neuronal precursor intermediate filament nestin, labeling. At 24 h after injury, neurons had extended appropriately polarized neurites, demonstrated by compartmentalized microtubule-associated proteins MAP2 and tau immunolabeling. Newly sprouting axons were tipped by growth cones; however, growth cones on the tips of sprouting axons (mean area, 26.32 +/- 2.20 microm) were significantly (pregenerating neurons exhibited distinct axonal dynamics, with a significant (pneuronal structural plasticity and defining the role of astrocyte reactivity in the response to trauma.

  17. Chronic ciguatoxin treatment induces synaptic scaling through voltage gated sodium channels in cortical neurons.

    Martín, Víctor; Vale, Carmen; Rubiolo, Juan A; Roel, Maria; Hirama, Masahiro; Yamashita, Shuji; Vieytes, Mercedes R; Botana, Luís M


    Ciguatoxins are sodium channels activators that cause ciguatera, one of the most widespread nonbacterial forms of food poisoning, which presents with long-term neurological alterations. In central neurons, chronic perturbations in activity induce homeostatic synaptic mechanisms that adjust the strength of excitatory synapses and modulate glutamate receptor expression in order to stabilize the overall activity. Immediate early genes, such as Arc and Egr1, are induced in response to activity changes and underlie the trafficking of glutamate receptors during neuronal homeostasis. To better understand the long lasting neurological consequences of ciguatera, it is important to establish the role that chronic changes in activity produced by ciguatoxins represent to central neurons. Here, the effect of a 30 min exposure of 10-13 days in vitro (DIV) cortical neurons to the synthetic ciguatoxin CTX 3C on Arc and Egr1 expression was evaluated using real-time polymerase chain reaction approaches. Since the toxin increased the mRNA levels of both Arc and Egr1, the effect of CTX 3C in NaV channels, membrane potential, firing activity, miniature excitatory postsynaptic currents (mEPSCs), and glutamate receptors expression in cortical neurons after a 24 h exposure was evaluated using electrophysiological and western blot approaches. The data presented here show that CTX 3C induced an upregulation of Arc and Egr1 that was prevented by previous coincubation of the neurons with the NaV channel blocker tetrodotoxin. In addition, chronic CTX 3C caused a concentration-dependent shift in the activation voltage of NaV channels to more negative potentials and produced membrane potential depolarization. Moreover, 24 h treatment of cortical neurons with 5 nM CTX 3C decreased neuronal firing and induced synaptic scaling mechanisms, as evidenced by a decrease in the amplitude of mEPSCs and downregulation in the protein level of glutamate receptors that was also prevented by tetrodotoxin

  18. Kinesin KIF4A transports integrin β1 in developing axons of cortical neurons.

    Heintz, Tristan G; Heller, Janosch P; Zhao, Rongrong; Caceres, Alfredo; Eva, Richard; Fawcett, James W


    CNS axons have poor regenerative ability compared to PNS axons, and mature axons regenerate less well than immature embryonic axons. The loss of regenerative ability with maturity is accompanied by the setting up of a selective transport filter in axons, restricting the types of molecule that are present. We confirm that integrins (represented by subunits β1 and α5) are present in early cortical axons in vitro but are excluded from mature axons. Ribosomal protein and L1 show selective axonal transport through association with kinesin kif4A; we have therefore examined the hypothesis that integrin transport might also be in association with kif4A. Kif4A is present in all processes of immature cortical neurons cultured at E18, then downregulated by 14days in vitro, coinciding with the exclusion of integrin from axons. Kif4a co-localises with β1 integrin in vesicles in neurons and non-neuronal cells, and the two molecules co-immunoprecipitate. Knockdown of KIF4A expression with shRNA reduced the level of integrin β1 in axons of developing neurons and reduced neurite elongation on laminin, an integrin-dependent substrate. Overexpression of kif4A triggered apoptosis in neuronal and non-neuronal cells. In mature neurons expression of kif4A-GFP at a modest level did not kill the cells, and the kif4A was detectable in their axons. However this was not accompanied by an increase in integrin β1 axonal transport, suggesting that kif4A is not the only integrin transporter, and that integrin exclusion from axons is controlled by factors other than the kif4A level. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Visualization of cortical projection neurons with retrograde TET-off lentiviral vector.

    Akiya Watakabe

    Full Text Available We are interested in identifying and characterizing various projection neurons that constitute the neocortical circuit. For this purpose, we developed a novel lentiviral vector that carries the tetracycline transactivator (tTA and the transgene under the TET Responsive Element promoter (TRE on a single backbone. By pseudotyping such a vector with modified rabies G-protein, we were able to express palmitoylated-GFP (palGFP or turboFP635 (RFP in corticothalamic, corticocortical, and corticopontine neurons of mice. The high-level expression of the transgene achieved by the TET-Off system enabled us to observe characteristic elaboration of neuronal processes for each cell type. At higher magnification, we were able to observe fine structures such as boutons and spines as well. We also injected our retrograde TET-Off vector to the marmoset cortex and proved that it can be used to label the long-distance cortical connectivity of millimeter scale. In conclusion, our novel retrograde tracer provides an attractive option to investigate the morphologies of identified cortical projection neurons of various species.

  20. Analytical characterization of spontaneous firing in networks of developing rat cultured cortical neurons

    Tateno, Takashi; Kawana, Akio; Jimbo, Yasuhiko


    We have used a multiunit electrode array in extracellular recording to investigate changes in the firing patterns in networks of developing rat cortical neurons. The spontaneous activity of continual asynchronous firing or the alternation of asynchronous spikes and synchronous bursts changed over time so that activity in the later stages consisted exclusively of synchronized bursts. The spontaneous coordinated activity in bursts produced a variability in interburst interval (IBI) sequences that is referred to as ``form.'' The stochastic and nonlinear dynamical analysis of IBI sequences revealed that these sequences reflected a largely random process and that the form for relatively immature neurons was largely oscillatory while the form for the more mature neurons was Poisson-like. The observed IBI sequences thus showed changes in form associated with both the intrinsic properties of the developing cells and the neural response to correlated synaptic inputs due to interaction between the developing neural circuits.

  1. Concentration-Dependent Dual Role of Thrombin In Protection of Cultured Rat Cortical Neurons

    García, Paul S.; Ciavatta, Vincent T.; Fidler, Jonathan A.; Woodbury, Anna; Levy, Jerrold H.; Tyor, William R.


    Background Thrombin’s role in the nervous system is not well understood. Under conditions of blood-brain barrier compromise (e.g., neurosurgery or stroke), thrombin can result in neuroapoptosis and the formation of glial scars. Despite this, preconditioning with thrombin has been found to be neuroprotective in models of cerebral ischemia and intracerebral hemorrhage. Methods We investigated the effects of physiologically relevant concentrations of thrombin on cortical neurons using two culture-based assays. We examined thrombin’s effect on neurites by quantitative analysis of fluorescently labeled neurons. To characterize thrombin’s effects on neuron survival, we spectrophotometrically measured changes in enzymatic activity. Using receptor agonists and thrombin inhibitors, we separately examined the role of thrombin and its receptor in neuroprotection. Results We found that low concentrations of thrombin (1 nM) enhances neurite growth and branching, neuron viability, and protects against excitotoxic damage. In contrast, higher concentrations of thrombin (100 nM) are potentially detrimental to neuronal health as evidenced by inhibition of neurite growth. Lower concentrations of thrombin resulted in equivalent neuroprotection as the antifibrinolytic, aprotinin, and the direct thrombin inhibitor, argatroban. Interestingly, exogenous application of the species-specific thrombin inhibitor, antithrombin III, was detrimental to neuronal health; suggesting that some endogenous thrombin is necessary for optimal neuron health in our culture system. Activation of the thrombin receptor, protease-activated receptor - 1 (PAR-1), via micromolar concentrations of the thrombin receptor agonist peptide, TRAP, did not adversely affect neuronal viability. Conclusions An optimal concentration of thrombin exists to enhance neuronal health. Neurotoxic effects of thrombin do not involve activation of PAR receptors and thus separate pharmacologic manipulation of thrombin’s receptor

  2. Homocysteine Aggravates Cortical Neural Cell Injury through Neuronal Autophagy Overactivation following Rat Cerebral Ischemia-Reperfusion

    Yaqian Zhao


    Full Text Available Elevated homocysteine (Hcy levels have been reported to be involved in neurotoxicity after ischemic stroke. However, the underlying mechanisms remain incompletely understood to date. In the current study, we hypothesized that neuronal autophagy activation may be involved in the toxic effect of Hcy on cortical neurons following cerebral ischemia. Brain cell injury was determined by hematoxylin-eosin (HE staining and TdT-mediated dUTP Nick-End Labeling (TUNEL staining. The level and localization of autophagy were detected by transmission electron microscopy, western blot and immunofluorescence double labeling. The oxidative DNA damage was revealed by immunofluorescence of 8-Hydroxy-2′-deoxyguanosine (8-OHdG. Hcy treatment aggravated neuronal cell death, significantly increased the formation of autophagosomes and the expression of LC3B and Beclin-1 in the brain cortex after middle cerebral artery occlusion-reperfusion (MCAO. Immunofluorescence analysis of LC3B and Beclin-1 distribution indicated that their expression occurred mainly in neurons (NeuN-positive and hardly in astrocytes (GFAP-positive. 8-OHdG expression was also increased in the ischemic cortex of Hcy-treated animals. Conversely, LC3B and Beclin-1 overexpression and autophagosome accumulation caused by Hcy were partially blocked by the autophagy inhibitor 3-methyladenine (3-MA. Hcy administration enhanced neuronal autophagy, which contributes to cell death following cerebral ischemia. The oxidative damage-mediated autophagy may be a molecular mechanism underlying neuronal cell toxicity of elevated Hcy level.

  3. Modulating motility of intracellular vesicles in cortical neurons with nanomagnetic forces on-chip.

    Kunze, Anja; Murray, Coleman Tylor; Godzich, Chanya; Lin, Jonathan; Owsley, Keegan; Tay, Andy; Di Carlo, Dino


    Vesicle transport is a major underlying mechanism of cell communication. Inhibiting vesicle transport in brain cells results in blockage of neuronal signals, even in intact neuronal networks. Modulating intracellular vesicle transport can have a huge impact on the development of new neurotherapeutic concepts, but only if we can specifically interfere with intracellular transport patterns. Here, we propose to modulate motion of intracellular lipid vesicles in rat cortical neurons based on exogenously bioconjugated and cell internalized superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPIONs) within microengineered magnetic gradients on-chip. Upon application of 6-126 pN on intracellular vesicles in neuronal cells, we explored how the magnetic force stimulus impacts the motion pattern of vesicles at various intracellular locations without modulating the entire cell morphology. Altering vesicle dynamics was quantified using, mean square displacement, a caging diameter and the total traveled distance. We observed a de-acceleration of intercellular vesicle motility, while applying nanomagnetic forces to cultured neurons with SPIONs, which can be explained by a decrease in motility due to opposing magnetic force direction. Ultimately, using nanomagnetic forces inside neurons may permit us to stop the mis-sorting of intracellular organelles, proteins and cell signals, which have been associated with cellular dysfunction. Furthermore, nanomagnetic force applications will allow us to wirelessly guide axons and dendrites by exogenously using permanent magnetic field gradients.

  4. Effects of inorganic lead on the differentiation and growth of cortical neurons in culture.

    Kern, M; Audesirk, T; Audesirk, G


    Lead exposure has devastating effects on the developing nervous system, producing morphological, cognitive, and behavioral deficits. To elucidate some of the mechanisms of lead neurotoxicity, we have examined its effects on the differentiation of several types of cultured neurons. Previously, we reported the effects of inorganic lead on several parameters of growth and differentiation of E18 rat hippocampal neurons and two types of neuroblastoma cells cultured in medium with 2% fetal calf serum (FCS) (Audesirk et al., 1991). In the present study, we report the effects of concentrations of lead ranging from 1nM to 1 mM on the differentiation of hippocampal neurons cultured in medium containing 10% FCS. In addition, we investigated lead effects on neurons isolated from the motor cortex region of the E18 rat embryo. Cortical neurons were exposed to lead in concentrations ranging from 0.1 nM to 1 mM in medium with either 10% FCS or 2% FCS for 48 hr. The effects of lead tended to be multimodal. Neurite initiation, which is highly sensitive to neurotoxic compounds, was inhibited by lead at both high and low concentrations, with no effects at intermediate levels. Medium with 10% FCS enhanced certain growth parameters and tended to reduce the effects of lead. There was an overall consistency in the effects of lead on motor cortex and hippocampal neurons.

  5. Acetylcholine modulates transient outward potassium channel in acutely isolated cerebral cortical neurons of rats

    Lanwei Cui; Tao Sun; Lihui Qu; Yurong Li; Haixia Wen


    BACKGROUND:The neuronal transient outward potassium channel has been shown to be highly associated with acetylcholine.However,the influence of acetylcholine on the transient outward potassium current in cerebral cortical neurons remains poorly understood.OBJECTIVE:To investigate acetylcholine modulation on transient outward potassium current in rat parietal cortical neurons using the whole-cell patch-clamp technique.DESIGN,TIME AND SETTING:A neuroelectrophysiology study was performed at the Department of Physiology,Harbin Medical University between January 2005 and January 2006.MATERIALS:Wistar rats were provided by the Animal Research Center,the Second Hospital of Harbin Medical University;PC-IIC patch-clamp amplifier and IBBClamp data collection analysis system were provided by Huazhong University for Science and Technology,Wuhan,China;PP-83 microelectrode puller was purchased from Narrishage,Japan.METHODS:The parietal somatosensory cortical neurons were acutely dissociated,and the modulation of acetylcholine (0.1,1,10,100 μmol/L) on transient outward potassium channel was recorded using the whole-cell patch-clamp technique.MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:Influence of acetylcholine on transient outward potassium current,potassium channel activation,and inactivation.RESULTS:The inhibitory effect of acetylcholine on transient outward potassium current was dose- and voltage-dependent (P<0.01).Acetylcholine was found to significantly affect the activation process of transient outward potassium current,i.e.,the activation curve of transient outward potassium current was left-shifted,while the inactivation curve was shifted to hyperpolarization.Acetylcholine significantly prolonged the time constant of recovery from inactivation of transient outward potassium current (P<0.01).CONCLUSION:These results suggest that acetylcholine inhibits transient outward potassium current by regulating activation and inactivation processes of the transient outward potassium channel.

  6. A new role for TIMP-1 in modulating neurite outgrowth and morphology of cortical neurons.

    Adlane Ould-yahoui

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases-1 (TIMP-1 displays pleiotropic activities, both dependent and independent of its inhibitory activity on matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs. In the central nervous system (CNS, TIMP-1 is strongly upregulated in reactive astrocytes and cortical neurons following excitotoxic/inflammatory stimuli, but no information exists on its effects on growth and morphology of cortical neurons. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We found that 24 h incubation with recombinant TIMP-1 induced a 35% reduction in neurite length and significantly increased growth cones size and the number of F-actin rich microprocesses. TIMP-1 mediated reduction in neurite length affected both dendrites and axons after 48 h treatment. The effects on neurite length and morphology were not elicited by a mutated form of TIMP-1 inactive against MMP-1, -2 and -3, and still inhibitory for MMP-9, but were mimicked by a broad spectrum MMP inhibitor. MMP-9 was poorly expressed in developing cortical neurons, unlike MMP-2 which was present in growth cones and whose selective inhibition caused neurite length reductions similar to those induced by TIMP-1. Moreover, TIMP-1 mediated changes in cytoskeleton reorganisation were not accompanied by modifications in the expression levels of actin, betaIII-tubulin, or microtubule assembly regulatory protein MAP2c. Transfection-mediated overexpression of TIMP-1 dramatically reduced neuritic arbour extension in the absence of detectable levels of released extracellular TIMP-1. CONCLUSIONS: Altogether, TIMP-1 emerges as a modulator of neuronal outgrowth and morphology in a paracrine and autrocrine manner through the inhibition, at least in part, of MMP-2 and not MMP-9. These findings may help us understand the role of the MMP/TIMP system in post-lesion pre-scarring conditions.

  7. CNTF-ACM promotes mitochondrial respiration and oxidative stress in cortical neurons through upregulating L-type calcium channel activity.

    Sun, Meiqun; Liu, Hongli; Xu, Huanbai; Wang, Hongtao; Wang, Xiaojing


    A specialized culture medium termed ciliary neurotrophic factor-treated astrocyte-conditioned medium (CNTF-ACM) allows investigators to assess the peripheral effects of CNTF-induced activated astrocytes upon cultured neurons. CNTF-ACM has been shown to upregulate neuronal L-type calcium channel current activity, which has been previously linked to changes in mitochondrial respiration and oxidative stress. Therefore, the aim of this study was to evaluate CNTF-ACM's effects upon mitochondrial respiration and oxidative stress in rat cortical neurons. Cortical neurons, CNTF-ACM, and untreated control astrocyte-conditioned medium (UC-ACM) were prepared from neonatal Sprague-Dawley rat cortical tissue. Neurons were cultured in either CNTF-ACM or UC-ACM for a 48-h period. Changes in the following parameters before and after treatment with the L-type calcium channel blocker isradipine were assessed: (i) intracellular calcium levels, (ii) mitochondrial membrane potential (ΔΨm), (iii) oxygen consumption rate (OCR) and adenosine triphosphate (ATP) formation, (iv) intracellular nitric oxide (NO) levels, (v) mitochondrial reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, and (vi) susceptibility to the mitochondrial complex I toxin rotenone. CNTF-ACM neurons displayed the following significant changes relative to UC-ACM neurons: (i) increased intracellular calcium levels (p ACM (p ACM promotes mitochondrial respiration and oxidative stress in cortical neurons through elevating L-type calcium channel activity.

  8. Cortical excitatory neurons become protected from cell division during neurogenesis in an Rb family-dependent manner.

    Oshikawa, Mio; Okada, Kei; Nakajima, Kazunori; Ajioka, Itsuki


    Cell cycle dysregulation leads to abnormal proliferation and cell death in a context-specific manner. Cell cycle progression driven via the Rb pathway forces neurons to undergo S-phase, resulting in cell death associated with the progression of neuronal degeneration. Nevertheless, some Rb- and Rb family (Rb, p107 and p130)-deficient differentiating neurons can proliferate and form tumors. Here, we found in mouse that differentiating cerebral cortical excitatory neurons underwent S-phase progression but not cell division after acute Rb family inactivation in differentiating neurons. However, the differentiating neurons underwent cell division and proliferated when Rb family members were inactivated in cortical progenitors. Differentiating neurons generated from Rb(-/-); p107(-/-); p130(-/-) (Rb-TKO) progenitors, but not acutely inactivated Rb-TKO differentiating neurons, activated the DNA double-strand break (DSB) repair pathway without increasing trimethylation at lysine 20 of histone H4 (H4K20), which has a role in protection against DNA damage. The activation of the DSB repair pathway was essential for the cell division of Rb-TKO differentiating neurons. These results suggest that newly born cortical neurons from progenitors become epigenetically protected from DNA damage and cell division in an Rb family-dependent manner.

  9. Olanzapine Prevents the PCP-induced Reduction in the Neurite Outgrowth of Prefrontal Cortical Neurons via NRG1.

    Zhang, Qingsheng; Yu, Yinghua; Huang, Xu-Feng


    Accumulating evidence suggests that reducing neurite outgrowth and synaptic plasticity plays a critical role in the pathology of cognitive deficits in schizophrenia. The N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor antagonist phencyclidine (PCP) can induce symptoms of schizophrenia as well as reduce dendritic spine density and neurite growth. The antipsychotic drug olanzapine may improve these deficits. This study aimed to investigate: (1) if olanzapine prevents PCP-induced suppression of neurite outgrowth and synaptic protein expression; (2) if olanzapine affects the Akt-GSK3 signaling pathway; and (3) the role of neuregulin 1 (NRG1) in this process. Immunofluorescence revealed that PCP treatment for 24 hours reduces both neurite length (28.5%) and the number of neurite branches (35.6%) in primary prefrontal cortical neuron cultures. PCP reduced protein and mRNA expressions of synaptophysin (24.9% and 23.2%, respectively) and PSD95 (31.5% and 21.4%, respectively), and the protein expression of p-Akt (26.7%) and p-GSK3β (35.2%). Olanzapine co-treatment prevented these PCP-induced effects in normal neurons but not in neurons from NRG1-knockout mice. These results indicate that NRG1 mediates the preventive effects of olanzapine on the PCP-induced impairment of neurite outgrowth and synaptic protein expression. This study provides potential targets for interventions on improving the efficacy of olanzapine on preventing cognitive deficits in schizophrenia.

  10. Subcortical connections of normotopic and heterotopic neurons in sensory and motor cortices of the tish mutant rat.

    Schottler, F; Couture, D; Rao, A; Kahn, H; Lee, K S


    Orthograde and retrograde tracers were used to examine subcortical connections of neurons in the neurological mutant tish rat. This animal exhibits bilateral heterotopia similar to those observed in epileptic humans with subcortical band heterotopia. Terminal varicosities were labeled in the striatum, thalamus, brainstem, and spinal cord following injections of the anterograde tracer biotinylated dextran amine (BDA) into the heterotopic cortex. The general topography of corticothalamic projections was evaluated by injecting the retrograde tracer Fluoro-Gold (FG) into ventral thalamic nuclei. Retrograde labeling of small-to-medium sized neurons was observed in layer VI of topographically restricted portions of the normotopic cortex. Similar appearing cells were labeled in the neighboring portions of the underlying heterotopia; however, these neurons did not display characteristic lamination or radial orientation. Thalamocortical terminals labeled by injecting BDA into the ventroposterolateral nucleus (VPL) were observed primarily in layer IV of the medial aspect of the normotopic somatosensory cortex. In contrast, a radial column of terminals was present in the underlying heterotopia. Typical barrel labeling was found in the lateral aspect of the normotopic somatosensory cortex after injecting the ventroposteromedial nucleus (VPM), whereas more diffuse patches of labeling were observed in the underlying heterotopia. Heterotopic neurons in the tish cortex, thus, exhibit characteristic features of subcortical connectivity. Both normotopic and heterotopic neurons in the tish brain project to appropriate subcortical sites and establish bidirectional topographic connections with the thalamus. These results suggest that primary sensory-motor information is represented in a parallel manner in the normotopic and heterotopic cortices of the tish rat.

  11. Silencing gamma-aminobutyric acid A receptor alpha 1 subunit expression and outward potassium current in developing cortical neurons

    Tao Bo; Jiang Li; Jian Li; Xingfang Li; Kaihui Xing


    We used RNA interference (RNAi) to disrupt synthesis of the cortical neuronal γ-aminobutyric acid A receptor (GABAAR) α1 in rats during development, and measured outward K+ currents during neuronal electrical activity using whole-cell patch-clamp techniques. Three pairs of small interfering RNA (siRNA) for GABAAR α1 subunit were designed using OligoEngine RNAi software. This siRNA was found to effectively inhibited GABAAR α1 mRNA expression in cortical neuronal culture in vitro, but did not significantly affect neuronal survival. Outward K+ currents were decreased, indicating that GABAAR α1 subunits in developing neurons participate in neuronal function by regulating outward K+ current.

  12. Influence of cadmium on Bcl-2, Bax and Caspase-3 mRNA transcription in rat's primary cultured cerebral cortical neurons%镉对大鼠大脑皮质神经细胞Bcl-2,Bax和Caspase-3mRNA转录的影响

    袁燕; 孙娅; 江辰阳; 刘学忠; 顾建红; 卞建春; 刘宗平


    To investigate the effects of cadmium on transcription levels of apoptosis-related genes Bcl-2,Bax and Caspase-3 mRNA in primary cerebral cortical neurons of SD rats,the neurons were exposured to cadmium at different concentrations (0,5,10,20μmol/L ) for 12 h. MTT assay was applied to test the cell viability,and real-time fluorescent quantitative PCR was used to detect the transcription levels of Bcl-2,Bax and Caspase-3 mRNA. In comparison with the control group, the results showed that the cell viability decreased significantly with the higher concentration cadmium (P〈0.05 or P〈0.01). Additionally, transcription levels of Bax and Caspase-3 mRNA increased significantly (P〈0.01),but transcription level of Bcl-2 mRNA and Bcl-2/Bax decreased signifi- cantly (P〈0. 05,P〈0. 01). It was concluded that cadmium can inhibit the growth of neurons and regulate the transcription of apoptosis-related genes,including Bcl-2,Bax and Caspase-3.%为研究镉对大鼠大脑皮质神经细胞凋亡相关基因Bcl-2、Bax和Caspase-3mRNA转录水平的影响,选用不同浓度(0、5、10、20μmol/L)醋酸镉染毒大鼠大脑皮质神经细胞12h,用MTT法检测细胞存活率,实时荧光定量PCR检测Bcl-2、Bax和Caspase-3mRNA的转录水平,并计算Bcl-2/Bax的比值。结果表明,与对照组相比,各染毒组细胞存活率随染毒剂量增加而显著下降(P〈0.05或P〈0.01);Bax和Caspase-3mRNA转录水平极显著升高(P〈0.01),而Bcl-2mRNA转录水平显著降低(P〈0.05),Bcl-2/Bax极显著降低(P〈0.01)。说明镉能抑制大鼠大脑皮质神经细胞的生长,并可调节凋亡相关基因Bcl2、Bax和Caspase-3mRNA的转录。

  13. Cortical regulation of dopamine depletion-induced dendritic spine loss in striatal medium spiny neurons.

    Neely, M D; Schmidt, D E; Deutch, A Y


    The proximate cause of Parkinson's disease is striatal dopamine depletion. Although no overt toxicity to striatal neurons has been reported in Parkinson's disease, one of the consequences of striatal dopamine loss is a decrease in the number of dendritic spines on striatal medium spiny neurons (MSNs). Dendrites of these neurons receive cortical glutamatergic inputs onto the dendritic spine head and dopaminergic inputs from the substantia nigra onto the spine neck. This synaptic arrangement suggests that dopamine gates corticostriatal glutamatergic drive onto spines. Using triple organotypic slice cultures composed of ventral mesencephalon, striatum, and cortex of the neonatal rat, we examined the role of the cortex in dopamine depletion-induced dendritic spine loss in MSNs. The striatal dopamine innervation was lesioned by treatment of the cultures with the dopaminergic neurotoxin 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP+) or by removing the mesencephalon. Both MPP+ and mesencephalic ablation decreased MSN dendritic spine density. Analysis of spine morphology revealed that thin spines were preferentially lost after dopamine depletion. Removal of the cortex completely prevented dopamine depletion-induced spine loss. These data indicate that the dendritic remodeling of MSNs seen in parkinsonism occurs secondary to increases in corticostriatal glutamatergic drive, and suggest that modulation of cortical activity may be a useful therapeutic strategy in Parkinson's disease.

  14. Interplay between kinesin-1 and cortical dynein during axonal outgrowth and microtubule organization in Drosophila neurons.

    del Castillo, Urko; Winding, Michael; Lu, Wen; Gelfand, Vladimir I


    In this study, we investigated how microtubule motors organize microtubules in Drosophila neurons. We showed that, during the initial stages of axon outgrowth, microtubules display mixed polarity and minus-end-out microtubules push the tip of the axon, consistent with kinesin-1 driving outgrowth by sliding antiparallel microtubules. At later stages, the microtubule orientation in the axon switches from mixed to uniform polarity with plus-end-out. Dynein knockdown prevents this rearrangement and results in microtubules of mixed orientation in axons and accumulation of microtubule minus-ends at axon tips. Microtubule reorganization requires recruitment of dynein to the actin cortex, as actin depolymerization phenocopies dynein depletion, and direct recruitment of dynein to the membrane bypasses the actin requirement. Our results show that cortical dynein slides 'minus-end-out' microtubules from the axon, generating uniform microtubule arrays. We speculate that differences in microtubule orientation between axons and dendrites could be dictated by differential activity of cortical dynein.

  15. Dynamic changes in proprotein convertase 2 activity in cortical neurons after ischemia/reperfusion and oxygen-glucose deprivation

    Shuqin Zhan; An Zhou; Chelsea Piper; Tao Yang


    In this study, a rat model of transient focal cerebral ischemia was established by performing 100 minutes of middle cerebral artery occlusion, and an in vitro model of experimental oxygen-glucose deprivation using cultured rat cortical neurons was established. Proprotein convertase 2 activity gradually decreased in the ischemic cortex with increasing duration of reperfusion. In cultured rat cortical neurons, the number of terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase-mediated 2'-deoxyuridine 5'-triphosphate-biotin nick end labeling-positive neurons significantly increased and proprotein convertase 2 activity also decreased gradually with increasing duration of oxygen-glucose deprivation. These experimental findings indicate that proprotein convertase 2 activity decreases in ischemic rat cortex after reperfusion, as well as in cultured rat cortical neurons after oxygen-glucose deprivation. These changes in enzyme activity may play an important pathological role in brain injury.

  16. Intermediate Progenitor Cohorts Differentially Generate Cortical Layers and Require Tbr2 for Timely Acquisition of Neuronal Subtype Identity.

    Mihalas, Anca B; Elsen, Gina E; Bedogni, Francesco; Daza, Ray A M; Ramos-Laguna, Kevyn A; Arnold, Sebastian J; Hevner, Robert F


    Intermediate progenitors (IPs) amplify the production of pyramidal neurons, but their role in selective genesis of cortical layers or neuronal subtypes remains unclear. Using genetic lineage tracing in mice, we find that IPs destined to produce upper cortical layers first appear early in corticogenesis, by embryonic day 11.5. During later corticogenesis, IP laminar fates are progressively limited to upper layers. We examined the role of Tbr2, an IP-specific transcription factor, in laminar fate regulation using Tbr2 conditional mutant mice. Upon Tbr2 inactivation, fewer neurons were produced by immediate differentiation and laminar fates were shifted upward. Genesis of subventricular mitoses was, however, not reduced in the context of a Tbr2-null cortex. Instead, neuronal and laminar differentiation were disrupted and delayed. Our findings indicate that upper-layer genesis depends on IPs from many stages of corticogenesis and that Tbr2 regulates the tempo of laminar fate implementation for all cortical layers.

  17. Intermediate Progenitor Cohorts Differentially Generate Cortical Layers and Require Tbr2 for Timely Acquisition of Neuronal Subtype Identity

    Anca B. Mihalas


    Full Text Available Intermediate progenitors (IPs amplify the production of pyramidal neurons, but their role in selective genesis of cortical layers or neuronal subtypes remains unclear. Using genetic lineage tracing in mice, we find that IPs destined to produce upper cortical layers first appear early in corticogenesis, by embryonic day 11.5. During later corticogenesis, IP laminar fates are progressively limited to upper layers. We examined the role of Tbr2, an IP-specific transcription factor, in laminar fate regulation using Tbr2 conditional mutant mice. Upon Tbr2 inactivation, fewer neurons were produced by immediate differentiation and laminar fates were shifted upward. Genesis of subventricular mitoses was, however, not reduced in the context of a Tbr2-null cortex. Instead, neuronal and laminar differentiation were disrupted and delayed. Our findings indicate that upper-layer genesis depends on IPs from many stages of corticogenesis and that Tbr2 regulates the tempo of laminar fate implementation for all cortical layers.

  18. 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.

  19. Trans-anethole protects cortical neuronal cells against oxygen-glucose deprivation/reoxygenation.

    Ryu, Sangwoo; Seol, Geun Hee; Park, Hyeon; Choi, In-Young


    Trans-anethole has been studied on pharmacological properties such as anti-inflammation, anti-oxidative stress, antifungal and anticancer. However, to date, the anti-ischemic effects of trans-anethole have not been assessed. Therefore, we investigated the neuroprotection of trans-anethole against oxygen-glucose deprivation/reoxygenation (OGD/R)-induced cortical neuronal cell injury, an in vitro model of ischemia. The abilities of trans-anethole to block excitotoxicity, oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction were evaluated in OGD/R-induced neurons. Trans-anethole significantly ameliorated OGD/R-induced neuronal cell injury by attenuating the intracellular calcium overload via the activation of NMDA receptors. Trans-anethole also inhibited OGD/R-induced reactive oxygen species overproduction, which may be derived from the scavenging activity in peroxyl radicals, assessed in an oxygen radical absorbance capacity assay. Furthermore, trans-anethole was shown to attenuate the depolarization of mitochondrial transmembrane. These results indicated that the neuroprotective effect of trans-anethole on OGD/R-induced neuronal injury might be due to its ability to inhibit excitotoxicity, oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction. Considering these multiple pathways causing ischemic neuronal damage, the multi-functional effect of trans-anethole suggested that it may be effective in treating ischemic stroke.

  20. Opto-current-clamp actuation of cortical neurons using a strategically designed channelrhodopsin.

    Lei Wen

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Optogenetic manipulation of a neuronal network enables one to reveal how high-order functions emerge in the central nervous system. One of the Chlamydomonas rhodopsins, channelrhodopsin-1 (ChR1, has several advantages over channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2 in terms of the photocurrent kinetics. Improved temporal resolution would be expected by the optogenetics using the ChR1 variants with enhanced photocurrents. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The photocurrent retardation of ChR1 was overcome by exchanging the sixth helix domain with its counterpart in ChR2 producing Channelrhodopsin-green receiver (ChRGR with further reform of the molecule. When the ChRGR photocurrent was measured from the expressing HEK293 cells under whole-cell patch clamp, it was preferentially activated by green light and has fast kinetics with minimal desensitization. With its kinetic advantages the use of ChRGR would enable one to inject a current into a neuron by the time course as predicted by the intensity of the shedding light (opto-current clamp. The ChRGR was also expressed in the motor cortical neurons of a mouse using Sindbis pseudovirion vectors. When an oscillatory LED light signal was applied sweeping through frequencies, it robustly evoked action potentials synchronized to the oscillatory light at 5-10 Hz in layer 5 pyramidal cells in the cortical slice. The ChRGR-expressing neurons were also driven in vivo with monitoring local field potentials (LFPs and the time-frequency energy distribution of the light-evoked response was investigated using wavelet analysis. The oscillatory light enhanced both the in-phase and out-phase responses of LFP at the preferential frequencies of 5-10 Hz. The spread of activity was evidenced by the fact that there were many c-Fos-immunoreactive neurons that were negative for ChRGR in a region of the motor cortex. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The opto-current-clamp study suggests that the depolarization of a small number of neurons

  1. 14,15-EET promotes mitochondrial biogenesis and protects cortical neurons against oxygen/glucose deprivation-induced apoptosis

    Wang, Lai; Chen, Man; Yuan, Lin; Xiang, Yuting [Department of Physiology and Pathophysiology, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Peking University Health Science Center, Beijing (China); Zheng, Ruimao, E-mail: [Department of Anatomy, Histology and Embryology, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Peking University Health Science Center, Beijing (China); Zhu, Shigong, E-mail: [Department of Physiology and Pathophysiology, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Peking University Health Science Center, Beijing (China)


    Highlights: • 14,15-EET inhibits OGD-induced apoptosis in cortical neurons. • Mitochondrial biogenesis of cortical neurons is promoted by 14,15-EET. • 14,15-EET preserves mitochondrial function of cortical neurons under OGD. • CREB mediates effect of 14,15-EET on mitochondrial biogenesis and function. - Abstract: 14,15-Epoxyeicosatrienoic acid (14,15-EET), a metabolite of arachidonic acid, is enriched in the brain cortex and exerts protective effect against neuronal apoptosis induced by ischemia/reperfusion. Although apoptosis has been well recognized to be closely associated with mitochondrial biogenesis and function, it is still unclear whether the neuroprotective effect of 14,15-EET is mediated by promotion of mitochondrial biogenesis and function in cortical neurons under the condition of oxygen–glucose deprivation (OGD). In this study, we found that 14,15-EET improved cell viability and inhibited apoptosis of cortical neurons. 14,15-EET significantly increased the mitochondrial mass and the ratio of mitochondrial DNA to nuclear DNA. Key makers of mitochondrial biogenesis, peroxisome proliferator activator receptor gamma-coactivator 1 alpha (PGC-1α), nuclear respiratory factor 1 (NRF-1) and mitochondrial transcription factor A (TFAM), were elevated at both mRNA and protein levels in the cortical neurons treated with 14,15-EET. Moreover, 14,15-EET markedly attenuated the decline of mitochondrial membrane potential, reduced ROS, while increased ATP synthesis. Knockdown of cAMP-response element binding protein (CREB) by siRNA blunted the up-regulation of PGC-1α and NRF-1 stimulated by 14,15-EET, and consequently abolished the neuroprotective effect of 14,15-EET. Our results indicate that 14,15-EET protects neurons from OGD-induced apoptosis by promoting mitochondrial biogenesis and function through CREB mediated activation of PGC-1α and NRF-1.

  2. CNTF-Treated Astrocyte Conditioned Medium Enhances Large-Conductance Calcium-Activated Potassium Channel Activity in Rat Cortical Neurons.

    Sun, Meiqun; Liu, Hongli; Xu, Huanbai; Wang, Hongtao; Wang, Xiaojing


    Seizure activity is linked to astrocyte activation as well as dysfunctional cortical neuron excitability produced from changes in calcium-activated potassium (KCa) channel function. Ciliary neurotrophic factor-treated astrocyte conditioned medium (CNTF-ACM) can be used to investigate the peripheral effects of activated astrocytes upon cortical neurons. However, CNTF-ACM's effect upon KCa channel activity in cultured cortical neurons has not yet been investigated. Whole-cell patch clamp recordings were performed in rat cortical neurons to evaluate CNTF-ACM's effects upon charybdotoxin-sensitive large-conductance KCa (BK) channel currents and apamin-sensitive small-conductance KCa (SK) channel current. Biotinylation and RT-PCR were applied to assess CNTF-ACM's effects upon the protein and mRNA expression, respectively, of the SK channel subunits SK2 and SK3 and the BK channel subunits BKα1 and BKβ3. An anti-fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2) monoclonal neutralizing antibody was used to assess the effects of the FGF-2 component of CNTF-ACM. CNTF-ACM significantly increased KCa channel current density, which was predominantly attributable to gains in BK channel activity (p ACM produced a significant increase in BKα1 and BKβ3 expression (p  0.05). Blocking FGF-2 produced significant reductions in KCa channel current density (p > 0.05) as well as BKα1 and BKβ3 expression in CNTF-ACM-treated neurons (p > 0.05). CNTF-ACM significantly enhances BK channel activity in rat cortical neurons and that FGF-2 is partially responsible for these effects. CNTF-induced astrocyte activation results in secretion of neuroactive factors which may affect neuronal excitability and resultant seizure activity in mammalian cortical neurons.

  3. CNTF inhibits high voltage activated Ca2+ currents in fetal mouse cortical neurones

    Holm, Ninna R; Christophersen, Palle; Hounsgaard, Jørn;


    Neurotrophic factors yield neuroprotection by mechanisms that may be related to their effects as inhibitors of apoptosis as well as their effects on ion channels. The effect of ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) on high-threshold voltage-activated Ca channels in cultured fetal mouse brain cortical...... neurones was investigated. Addition of CNTF into serum-free growth medium resulted in delayed reduction of the Ca2+ currents. The currents decreased to 50% after 4 h and stabilized at this level during incubation with CNTF for 48 h. Following removal of CNTF the inhibition was completely reversed after 18...

  4. Deficient Rab11 activity underlies glucose hypometabolism in primary neurons of Huntington's disease mice

    Li, Xueyi, E-mail: [Department of Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Charlestown, MA 02129 (United States); Valencia, Antonio; McClory, Hollis; Sapp, Ellen; Kegel, Kimberly B. [Department of Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Charlestown, MA 02129 (United States); DiFiglia, Marian, E-mail: [Department of Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Charlestown, MA 02129 (United States)


    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Primary Huntington's disease neurons are impaired in taking up glucose. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Rab11 modulates glucose uptake in neurons. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Increasing Rab11 activity attenuates the glucose uptake defect in disease neurons. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer We provide a novel mechanism for glucose hypometabolism in Huntington's disease. -- Abstract: Huntington's disease (HD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder caused by a CAG repeat expansion in the huntingtin gene. Positron emission tomography studies have revealed a decline in glucose metabolism in the brain of patients with HD by a mechanism that has not been established. We examined glucose utilization in embryonic primary cortical neurons of wild-type (WT) and HD knock-in mice, which have 140 CAG repeats inserted in the endogenous mouse huntingtin gene (HD{sup 140Q/140Q}). Primary HD{sup 140Q/140Q} cortical neurons took up significantly less glucose than did WT neurons. Expression of permanently inactive and permanently active forms of Rab11 correspondingly altered glucose uptake in WT neurons, suggesting that normal activity of Rab11 is needed for neuronal uptake of glucose. It is known that Rab11 activity is diminished in HD{sup 140Q/140Q} neurons. Expression of dominant active Rab11 to enhance the activity of Rab11 normalized glucose uptake in HD{sup 140Q/140Q} neurons. These results suggest that deficient activity of Rab11 is a novel mechanism for glucose hypometabolism in HD.



    Objective To research the effect of melatonin against glutamate excitotoxicity. Methods The model of glutamate-induced excitotoxic damage was built up in rat cerebral cortical cell culture. The effect of mela- tonin against excitotoxic injury was observed by determining the leakage rate of lactate dehydrogenase(LDH) from neurons. Results The leakage rate of LDH wasn't decreased markedly when cultures were exposed to melatonin be- fore, during or 6 h after glutamate treatment. The leakage rate of LDH was decreased significantly when melatonin was administered 0 h, 2 h or 4 h after the cultures were exposed to glutamate. The inhibitory function of melatonin on LDH leakage was most effective at 2 h and 4 h. Conclusion Melatonin has protective effects on neurons damaged by glutamate in a certain time limit.

  6. Modulation of Neuronal Responses by Exogenous Attention in Macaque Primary Visual Cortex.

    Wang, Feng; Chen, Minggui; Yan, Yin; Zhaoping, Li; Li, Wu


    Visual perception is influenced by attention deployed voluntarily or triggered involuntarily by salient stimuli. Modulation of visual cortical processing by voluntary or endogenous attention has been extensively studied, but much less is known about how involuntary or exogenous attention affects responses of visual cortical neurons. Using implanted microelectrode arrays, we examined the effects of exogenous attention on neuronal responses in the primary visual cortex (V1) of awake monkeys. A bright annular cue was flashed either around the receptive fields of recorded neurons or in the opposite visual field to capture attention. A subsequent grating stimulus probed the cue-induced effects. In a fixation task, when the cue-to-probe stimulus onset asynchrony (SOA) was visual fields weakened or diminished both the physiological and behavioral cueing effects. Our findings indicate that exogenous attention significantly modulates V1 responses and that the modulation strength depends on both novelty and task relevance of the stimulus. Significance statement: Visual attention can be involuntarily captured by a sudden appearance of a conspicuous object, allowing rapid reactions to unexpected events of significance. The current study discovered a correlate of this effect in monkey primary visual cortex. An abrupt, salient, flash enhanced neuronal responses, and shortened the animal's reaction time, to a subsequent visual probe stimulus at the same location. However, the enhancement of the neural responses diminished after repeated exposures to this flash if the animal was not required to react to the probe. Moreover, a second, simultaneous, flash at another location weakened the neuronal and behavioral effects of the first one. These findings revealed, beyond the observations reported so far, the effects of exogenous attention in the brain.

  7. Golli Myelin Basic Proteins Modulate Voltage-Operated Ca(++) Influx and Development in Cortical and Hippocampal Neurons.

    Vt, Cheli; DA, Santiago González; V, Spreuer; V, Handley; At, Campagnoni; Pm, Paez


    The golli proteins, products of the myelin basic protein gene, are widely expressed in oligodendrocyte progenitor cells and neurons during the postnatal development of the brain. While golli appears to be important for oligodendrocyte migration and differentiation, its function in neuronal development is completely unknown. We have found that golli proteins function as new and novel modulators of voltage-operated Ca(++) channels (VOCCs) in neurons. In vitro, golli knock-out (KO) neurons exhibit decreased Ca(++) influx after plasma membrane depolarization and a substantial maturational delay. Increased expression of golli proteins enhances L-type Ca(++) entry and processes outgrowth in cortical neurons, and pharmacological activation of L-type Ca(++) channels stimulates maturation and prevents cell death in golli-KO neurons. In situ, Ca(++) influx mediated by L-type VOCCs was significantly decreased in cortical and hippocampal neurons of the golli-KO brain. These Ca(++) alterations affect cortical and hippocampal development and the proliferation and survival of neural progenitor cells during the postnatal development of the golli-KO brain. The CA1/3 sections and the dentate gyrus of the hippocampus were reduced in the golli-KO mice as well as the density of dendrites in the somatosensory cortex. Furthermore, the golli-KO mice display abnormal behavior including deficits in episodic memory and reduced anxiety. Because of the expression of the golli proteins within neurons in learning and memory centers of the brain, this work has profound implication in neurodegenerative diseases and neurological disorders.

  8. Imaging separation of neuronal from vascular effects of cocaine on rat cortical brain in vivo

    Yuan, Z.; Du, C.; Yuan, Z.; Luo, Z.; Volkow, N.D.; Pan, Y.; Du, C.


    MRI techniques to study brain function assume coupling between neuronal activity, metabolism and flow. However, recent evidence of physiological uncoupling between neuronal and cerebrovascular events highlights the need for methods to simultaneously measure these three properties. We report a multimodality optical approach that integrates dual-wavelength laser speckle imaging (measures changes in blood flow, blood volume and hemoglobin oxygenation), digital-frequency-ramping optical coherence tomography (images quantitative 3D vascular network) and Rhod2 fluorescence (images intracellular calcium for measure of neuronal activity) at high spatiotemporal resolutions (30 {micro}m, 10 Hz) and over a large field of view (3 x 5 mm{sup 2}). We apply it to assess cocaine's effects in rat cortical brain and show an immediate decrease 3.5 {+-} 0.9 min, phase (1) in the oxygen content of hemoglobin and the cerebral blood flow followed by an overshoot 7.1 {+-} 0.2 min, phase (2) lasting over 20 min whereas Ca{sup 2+} increased immediately (peaked at t = 4.1 {+-} 0.4 min) and remained elevated. This enabled us to identify a delay (2.9 {+-} 0.5 min) between peak neuronal and vascular responses in phase 2. The ability of this multimodality optical approach for simultaneous imaging at high spatiotemporal resolutions permits us to distinguish the vascular versus cellular changes of the brain, thus complimenting other neuroimaging modalities for brain functional studies (e. g., PET, fMRI).

  9. Molecular pathways underlying projection neuron production and migration during cerebral cortical development

    Chiaki eOhtaka-Maruyama


    Full Text Available Glutamatergic neurons of the mammalian cerebral cortex originate from the radial glia (RG progenitors in the ventricular zone (VZ. During corticogenesis, neuroblasts migrate toward the pial surface using two different migration modes. One is multipolar (MP migration with random directional movement, and the other is locomotion, which is a unidirectional movement guided by the RG fiber. After reaching their final destination, the neurons finalize their migration by terminal translocation, which is followed by maturation via dendrite extension to initiate synaptogenesis and thereby complete neural circuit formation. This switching of migration modes during cortical development is unique in mammals, which suggests that the RG-guided locomotion mode may contribute to the evolution of the mammalian neocortical 6-layer structure. Many factors have been reported to be involved in the regulation of this radial neuronal migration process. In general, the radial migration can be largely divided into four steps; (1 maintenance and departure from the VZ of neural progenitor cells, (2 MP migration and transition to bipolar cells, (3 RG-guided locomotion, and (4 terminal translocation and dendrite maturation. Among these, many different gene mutations or knockdown effects have resulted in failure of the MP to bipolar transition (step 2, suggesting that it is a critical step, particularly in radial migration. Moreover, this transition occurs at the subplate layer. In this review, we summarize recent advances in our understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying each of these steps. Finally, we discuss the evolutionary aspects of neuronal migration in corticogenesis.

  10. Distinct regulation of activity-dependent transcription of immediate early genes in cultured rat cortical neurons.

    Fukuchi, Mamoru; Sanabe, Tomofumi; Watanabe, Toshifumi; Kubota, Takane; Tabuchi, Akiko; Tsuda, Masaaki


    The activity-regulated expression of immediate early genes (IEGs) contributes to long-lasting neuronal functions underlying long-term memory. However, their response properties following neuronal activity are unique and remain poorly understood. To address this knowledge gap, here we further investigated the response properties of two representative IEGs, c-fos and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (Bdnf). Treatment of cultured cortical cells with KCl produces a depolarization process that results in the increase of intracellular calcium concentration in a KCl concentration-dependent manner. Consistent with this increase, c-fos expression was induced in a KCl concentration-dependent manner. In contrast, however, Bdnf expression was optimally activated by both 25 and 50 mM concentration of KCl. Similar results were observed when the cells were treated with okadaic acid, which inhibits protein phosphatases and elicits the hyper-phosphorylation of signaling molecules. Thus, Bdnf expression is strictly regulated by a neuronal activity threshold in an all or nothing manner, whereas c-fos expression is activated in a neuronal activity-dependent manner. Our findings also suggest that these differential responses might be due to the presence or absence of a TATA box. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Modeling the Formation Process of Grouping Stimuli Sets through Cortical Columns and Microcircuits to Feature Neurons

    Frank Klefenz


    Full Text Available A computational model of a self-structuring neuronal net is presented in which repetitively applied pattern sets induce the formation of cortical columns and microcircuits which decode distinct patterns after a learning phase. In a case study, it is demonstrated how specific neurons in a feature classifier layer become orientation selective if they receive bar patterns of different slopes from an input layer. The input layer is mapped and intertwined by self-evolving neuronal microcircuits to the feature classifier layer. In this topical overview, several models are discussed which indicate that the net formation converges in its functionality to a mathematical transform which maps the input pattern space to a feature representing output space. The self-learning of the mathematical transform is discussed and its implications are interpreted. Model assumptions are deduced which serve as a guide to apply model derived repetitive stimuli pattern sets to in vitro cultures of neuron ensembles to condition them to learn and execute a mathematical transform.

  12. A novel role for PTEN in the inhibition of neurite outgrowth by Myelin-associated glycoprotein in cortical neurons

    Perdigoto, Ana Luisa; Chaudhry, Nagarathnamma; Barnes, Gregory N.; Filbin, Marie T.; Carter, Bruce D.


    Axonal regeneration in the central nervous system is prevented, in part, by inhibitory proteins expressed by myelin, including Myelin-associated glycoprotein (MAG). Although injury to the corticospinal tract can result in permanent disability, little is known regarding the mechanisms by which MAG affects cortical neurons. Here, we demonstrate that cortical neurons plated on MAG expressing CHO cells, exhibit a striking reduction in process outgrowth. Interestingly, none of the receptors previously implicated in MAG signaling, including the p75 neurotrophin receptor or gangliosides, contributed significantly to MAG-mediated inhibition. However, blocking the small GTPase Rho or its downstream effector kinase, ROCK, partially reversed the effects of MAG on the neurons. In addition, we identified the lipid phosphatase PTEN as a mediator of MAG’s inhibitory effects on neurite outgrowth. Knockdown or gene deletion of PTEN or over expression of activated AKT in cortical neurons resulted in significant, although partial, rescue of neurite outgrowth on MAG-CHO cells. Moreover, MAG decreased the levels of phospho-Akt, suggesting that it activates PTEN in the neurons. Taken together, these results suggest a novel pathway activated by MAG in cortical neurons involving the PTEN/PI3K/AKT axis. PMID:20869442

  13. Basal forebrain neurons suppress amygdala kindling via cortical but not hippocampal cholinergic projections in rats.

    Ferencz, I; Leanza, G; Nanobashvili, A; Kokaia, M; Lindvall, O


    Intraventricular administration of the immunotoxin 192 IgG-saporin in rats has been shown to cause a selective loss of cholinergic afferents to the hippocampus and cortical areas, and to facilitate seizure development in hippocampal kindling. Here we demonstrate that this lesion also accelerates seizure progression when kindling is induced by electrical stimulations in the amygdala. However, whereas intraventricular 192 IgG-saporin facilitated the development of the initial stages of hippocampal kindling, the same lesion promoted the late stages of amygdala kindling. To explore the role of various parts of the basal forebrain cholinergic system in amygdala kindling, selective lesions of the cholinergic projections to either hippocampus or cortex were produced by intraparenchymal injections of 192 IgG-saporin into medial septum/vertical limb of the diagonal band or nucleus basalis, respectively. Cholinergic denervation of the cortical regions caused acceleration of amygdala kindling closely resembling that observed after the more widespread lesion induced by intraventricular 192 IgG-saporin. In contrast, removal of the cholinergic input to the hippocampus had no effect on the development of amygdala kindling. These data indicate that basal forebrain cholinergic neurons suppress kindling elicited from amygdala, and that this dampening effect is mediated via cortical but not hippocampal projections.

  14. Spatiotemporal memory is an intrinsic property of networks of dissociated cortical neurons.

    Ju, Han; Dranias, Mark R; Banumurthy, Gokulakrishna; VanDongen, Antonius M J


    The ability to process complex spatiotemporal information is a fundamental process underlying the behavior of all higher organisms. However, how the brain processes information in the temporal domain remains incompletely understood. We have explored the spatiotemporal information-processing capability of networks formed from dissociated rat E18 cortical neurons growing in culture. By combining optogenetics with microelectrode array recording, we show that these randomly organized cortical microcircuits are able to process complex spatiotemporal information, allowing the identification of a large number of temporal sequences and classification of musical styles. These experiments uncovered spatiotemporal memory processes lasting several seconds. Neural network simulations indicated that both short-term synaptic plasticity and recurrent connections are required for the emergence of this capability. Interestingly, NMDA receptor function is not a requisite for these short-term spatiotemporal memory processes. Indeed, blocking the NMDA receptor with the antagonist APV significantly improved the temporal processing ability of the networks, by reducing spontaneously occurring network bursts. These highly synchronized events have disastrous effects on spatiotemporal information processing, by transiently erasing short-term memory. These results show that the ability to process and integrate complex spatiotemporal information is an intrinsic property of generic cortical networks that does not require specifically designed circuits. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/354040-12$15.00/0.

  15. Effects of the muscarinic antagonists pirenzepine and gallamine on spontaneous and evoked responses of rat cerebral cortical neurones.

    Swanson, T. H.; Phillis, J. W.


    1. The muscarinic receptor antagonists gallamine and pirenzepine were iontophoretically applied to rat cerebral cortical cholinoceptive neurones, including corticospinal neurones, to assess their effects on spontaneous firing, and firing induced by: stimulation of the nucleus basalis magnocellularis (NBM); contralateral hindpaw stimulation; application of acetylcholine (ACh); and application of glutamate. 2. Both compounds potently inhibited firing induced by ACh iontophoresis, whilst neither compound consistently altered firing induced by application of glutamate. 3. Gallamine was very effective and pirenzepine less effective, at inhibiting both spontaneous firing and the delayed firing induced by NBM stimulation. The short-latency excitations elicited by NBM stimulation were enhanced by these muscarinic antagonists. 4. Gallamine and pirenzepine enhanced cortical cholinoceptive cell firing induced by contralateral hindpaw stimulation. 5. It is concluded that gallamine depresses spontaneous activity more than pirenzepine, and that both compounds can affect the cortical cell firing evoked by stimulation of the NBM and of thalamo-cortical afferent fibres. PMID:3401638

  16. Endogenous polyamines regulate cortical neuronal excitability by blocking voltage-gated Na+ channels.

    Fleidervish, Ilya A; Libman, Lior; Katz, Efrat; Gutnick, Michael J


    Because the excitable properties of neurons in the neocortex depend on the characteristics of voltage-gated Na(+) channels, factors which regulate those characteristics can fundamentally modify the dynamics of cortical circuits. Here, we report on a novel neuromodulatory mechanism that links the availability of Na(+) channels to metabolism of polyamines (PAs) in the cerebral cortex. Using single channel and whole-cell recordings, we found that products of PA metabolism, the ubiquitous aliphatic polycations spermine and spermidine, are endogenous blockers of Na(+) channels in layer 5 pyramidal cells. Because the blockade is activity-dependent, it is particularly effective against Na(+) channels which fail to inactivate rapidly and thus underlie the persistent Na(+) current. At the level of the local cortical circuit, pharmacological depletion of PAs led to increased spontaneous spiking and periods of hypersynchronous discharge. Our data suggest that changes in PA levels, whether associated with normal brain states or pathological conditions, profoundly modify Na(+) channel availability and thereby shape the integrative behavior of single neurons and neocortical circuits.

  17. Dysregulated Expression of Neuregulin-1 by Cortical Pyramidal Neurons Disrupts Synaptic Plasticity

    Amit Agarwal


    Full Text Available Neuregulin-1 (NRG1 gene variants are associated with increased genetic risk for schizophrenia. It is unclear whether risk haplotypes cause elevated or decreased expression of NRG1 in the brains of schizophrenia patients, given that both findings have been reported from autopsy studies. To study NRG1 functions in vivo, we generated mouse mutants with reduced and elevated NRG1 levels and analyzed the impact on cortical functions. Loss of NRG1 from cortical projection neurons resulted in increased inhibitory neurotransmission, reduced synaptic plasticity, and hypoactivity. Neuronal overexpression of cysteine-rich domain (CRD-NRG1, the major brain isoform, caused unbalanced excitatory-inhibitory neurotransmission, reduced synaptic plasticity, abnormal spine growth, altered steady-state levels of synaptic plasticity-related proteins, and impaired sensorimotor gating. We conclude that an “optimal” level of NRG1 signaling balances excitatory and inhibitory neurotransmission in the cortex. Our data provide a potential pathomechanism for impaired synaptic plasticity and suggest that human NRG1 risk haplotypes exert a gain-of-function effect.

  18. Neurites regrowth of cortical neurons by GSK3beta inhibition independently of Nogo receptor 1.

    Seira, Oscar; Gavín, Rosalina; Gil, Vanessa; Llorens, Franc; Rangel, Alejandra; Soriano, Eduardo; del Río, José Antonio


    Lesioned axons do not regenerate in the adult mammalian CNS, owing to the over-expression of inhibitory molecules such as myelin-derived proteins or chondroitin sulphate proteoglycans. In order to overcome axon inhibition, strategies based on extrinsic and intrinsic treatments have been developed. For myelin-associated inhibition, blockage with NEP1-40, receptor bodies or IN-1 antibodies has been used. In addition, endogenous blockage of cell signalling mechanisms induced by myelin-associated proteins is a potential tool for overcoming axon inhibitory signals. We examined the participation of glycogen synthase kinase 3beta (GSK3beta) and extracellular-related kinase (ERK) 1/2 in axon regeneration failure in lesioned cortical neurons. We also investigated whether pharmacological blockage of GSK3beta and ERK1/2 activities facilitates regeneration after myelin-directed inhibition in two models: (i) cerebellar granule cells and (ii) lesioned entorhino-hippocampal pathway in slice cultures, and whether the regenerative effects are mediated by Nogo Receptor 1 (NgR1). We demonstrate that, in contrast to ERK1/2 inhibition, the pharmacological treatment of GSK3beta inhibition strongly facilitated regrowth of cerebellar granule neurons over myelin independently of NgR1. Finally, these regenerative effects were corroborated in the lesioned entorhino-hippocampal pathway in NgR1-/- mutant mice. These results provide new findings for the development of new assays and strategies to enhance axon regeneration in injured cortical connections.

  19. Long-Term Lithium Treatment Increases cPLA2 and iPLA2 Activity in Cultured Cortical and Hippocampal Neurons

    Vanessa de Jesus De-Paula


    Full Text Available Background: Experimental evidence supports the neuroprotective properties of lithium, with implications for the treatment and prevention of dementia and other neurodegenerative disorders. Lithium modulates critical intracellular pathways related to neurotrophic support, inflammatory response, autophagy and apoptosis. There is additional evidence indicating that lithium may also affect membrane homeostasis. Objective: To investigate the effect of lithium on cytosolic phospholipase A2 (PLA2 activity, a key player on membrane phospholipid turnover which has been found to be reduced in blood and brain tissue of patients with Alzheimer’s disease (AD. Methods: Primary cultures of cortical and hippocampal neurons were treated for 7 days with different concentrations of lithium chloride (0.02 mM, 0.2 mM and 2 mM. A radio-enzymatic assay was used to determine the total activity of PLA2 and two PLA2 subtypes: cytosolic calcium-dependent (cPLA2; and calcium-independent (iPLA2. Results: cPLA2 activity increased by 82% (0.02 mM; p = 0.05 and 26% (0.2 mM; p = 0.04 in cortical neurons and by 61% (0.2 mM; p = 0.03 and 57% (2 mM; p = 0.04 in hippocampal neurons. iPLA2 activity was increased by 7% (0.2 mM; p = 0.04 and 13% (2 mM; p = 0.05 in cortical neurons and by 141% (0.02 mM; p = 0.0198 in hippocampal neurons. Conclusion: long-term lithium treatment increases membrane phospholipid metabolism in neurons through the activation of total, c- and iPLA2. This effect is more prominent at sub-therapeutic concentrations of lithium, and the activation of distinct cytosolic PLA2 subtypes is tissue specific, i.e., iPLA2 in hippocampal neurons, and cPLA2 in cortical neurons. Because PLA2 activities are reported to be reduced in Alzheimer’s disease (AD and bipolar disorder (BD, the present findings provide a possible mechanism by which long-term lithium treatment may be useful in the prevention of the disease.

  20. Membrane potential dynamics of populations of cortical neurons during auditory streaming

    Farley, Brandon J.


    How a mixture of acoustic sources is perceptually organized into discrete auditory objects remains unclear. One current hypothesis postulates that perceptual segregation of different sources is related to the spatiotemporal separation of cortical responses induced by each acoustic source or stream. In the present study, the dynamics of subthreshold membrane potential activity were measured across the entire tonotopic axis of the rodent primary auditory cortex during the auditory streaming paradigm using voltage-sensitive dye imaging. Consistent with the proposed hypothesis, we observed enhanced spatiotemporal segregation of cortical responses to alternating tone sequences as their frequency separation or presentation rate was increased, both manipulations known to promote stream segregation. However, across most streaming paradigm conditions tested, a substantial cortical region maintaining a response to both tones coexisted with more peripheral cortical regions responding more selectively to one of them. We propose that these coexisting subthreshold representation types could provide neural substrates to support the flexible switching between the integrated and segregated streaming percepts. PMID:26269558

  1. Self-organized two-state membrane potential transitions in a network of realistically modeled cortical neurons.

    Kang, Siu; Kitano, Katsunori; Fukai, Tomoki


    Recent studies have revealed that in vivo cortical neurons show spontaneous transitions between two subthreshold levels of the membrane potentials, 'up' and 'down' states. The neural mechanism of generating those spontaneous states transitions, however, remains unclear. Recent electrophysiological studies have suggested that those state transitions may occur through activation of a hyperpolarization-activated cation current (H-current), possibly by inhibitory synaptic inputs. Here, we demonstrate that two-state membrane potential fluctuations similar to those exhibited by in vivo neurons can be generated through a spike-timing-dependent self-organizing process in a network of inhibitory neurons and excitatory neurons expressing the H-current.

  2. The neuroprotective effects of taurine against nickel by reducing oxidative stress and maintaining mitochondrial function in cortical neurons.

    Xu, Shangcheng; He, Mindi; Zhong, Min; Li, Li; Lu, Yonghui; Zhang, Yanwen; Zhang, Lei; Yu, Zhengping; Zhou, Zhou


    Previous studies have indicated that oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction are involved in the toxicity of nickel. Taurine is recognized as an efficient antioxidant and is essential for mitochondrial function. To investigate whether taurine could protect against the neurotoxicity of nickel, we exposed primary cultured cortical neurons to various concentrations of nickel chloride (NiCl2; 0.5mM, 1mM and 2mM) for 24h or to 1mM NiCl2 for various periods (0 h, 12h, 24h and 48 h). Our results showed that taurine efficiently reduced lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) release induced by NiCl2. Along with this protective effect, taurine pretreatment not only significantly reversed the increase of ROS production and mitochondrial superoxide concentration, but also attenuated the decrease of superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity and glutathione (GSH) concentration in neurons exposed to NiCl2 for 24h. Moreover, nickel exposure reduced ATP production, disrupted the mitochondrial membrane potential and decreased mtDNA content. These types of oxidative damage in the mitochondria were efficiently ameliorated by taurine pretreatment. Taken together, our results indicate that the neuroprotective effects of taurine against the toxicity of nickel might largely depend on its roles in reducing oxidative stress and improving mitochondrial function. Taurine may have great pharmacological potential in treating the adverse effects of nickel in the nervous system. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Schizandrin Protects Primary Rat Cortical Cell Cultures from Glutamate-Induced Apoptosis by Inhibiting Activation of the MAPK Family and the Mitochondria Dependent Pathway

    Wen-Huang Peng; Ming-Tsuen Hsieh; Fan-Shiu Tsai; Li-Wei Lin; Jiin-Cherng Yen; Jung Chao; Meng-Shiou Lee; Hao-Yuan Cheng


    Glutamate-induced excitotoxicity has been implicated in a variety of neuronal degenerative disorders. In the present study, we investigated the possible neuroprotective effects of schizandrin against apoptosis of primary cultured rat cortical cells induced by glutamate. Glutamate (10 μM) administered for 24 h decreased the expression of Bcl-2 and Bcl-XL protein, whereas increased the expression of Bax, Bak, apoptosis inducing factor (AIF), endonuclease G (Nodo G) and endoplasmic reti...

  4. Female Mice Lacking Estrogen Receptor-α in Hypothalamic Proopiomelanocortin (POMC) Neurons Display Enhanced Estrogenic Response on Cortical Bone Mass.

    Farman, H H; Windahl, S H; Westberg, L; Isaksson, H; Egecioglu, E; Schele, E; Ryberg, H; Jansson, J O; Tuukkanen, J; Koskela, A; Xie, S K; Hahner, L; Zehr, J; Clegg, D J; Lagerquist, M K; Ohlsson, C


    Estrogens are important regulators of bone mass and their effects are mainly mediated via estrogen receptor (ER)α. Central ERα exerts an inhibitory role on bone mass. ERα is highly expressed in the arcuate (ARC) and the ventromedial (VMN) nuclei in the hypothalamus. To test whether ERα in proopiomelanocortin (POMC) neurons, located in ARC, is involved in the regulation of bone mass, we used mice lacking ERα expression specifically in POMC neurons (POMC-ERα(-/-)). Female POMC-ERα(-/-) and control mice were ovariectomized (OVX) and treated with vehicle or estradiol (0.5 μg/d) for 6 weeks. As expected, estradiol treatment increased the cortical bone thickness in femur, the cortical bone mechanical strength in tibia and the trabecular bone volume fraction in both femur and vertebrae in OVX control mice. Importantly, the estrogenic responses were substantially increased in OVX POMC-ERα(-/-) mice compared with the estrogenic responses in OVX control mice for cortical bone thickness (+126 ± 34%, P mass, ERα was silenced using an adeno-associated viral vector. Silencing of ERα in hypothalamic VMN resulted in unchanged bone mass. In conclusion, mice lacking ERα in POMC neurons display enhanced estrogenic response on cortical bone mass and mechanical strength. We propose that the balance between inhibitory effects of central ERα activity in hypothalamic POMC neurons in ARC and stimulatory peripheral ERα-mediated effects in bone determines cortical bone mass in female mice.

  5. The dynamic brain: from spiking neurons to neural masses and cortical fields.

    Gustavo Deco


    Full Text Available The cortex is a complex system, characterized by its dynamics and architecture, which underlie many functions such as action, perception, learning, language, and cognition. Its structural architecture has been studied for more than a hundred years; however, its dynamics have been addressed much less thoroughly. In this paper, we review and integrate, in a unifying framework, a variety of computational approaches that have been used to characterize the dynamics of the cortex, as evidenced at different levels of measurement. Computational models at different space-time scales help us understand the fundamental mechanisms that underpin neural processes and relate these processes to neuroscience data. Modeling at the single neuron level is necessary because this is the level at which information is exchanged between the computing elements of the brain; the neurons. Mesoscopic models tell us how neural elements interact to yield emergent behavior at the level of microcolumns and cortical columns. Macroscopic models can inform us about whole brain dynamics and interactions between large-scale neural systems such as cortical regions, the thalamus, and brain stem. Each level of description relates uniquely to neuroscience data, from single-unit recordings, through local field potentials to functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI, electroencephalogram (EEG, and magnetoencephalogram (MEG. Models of the cortex can establish which types of large-scale neuronal networks can perform computations and characterize their emergent properties. Mean-field and related formulations of dynamics also play an essential and complementary role as forward models that can be inverted given empirical data. This makes dynamic models critical in integrating theory and experiments. We argue that elaborating principled and informed models is a prerequisite for grounding empirical neuroscience in a cogent theoretical framework, commensurate with the achievements in the

  6. Tissue-type plasminogen activator induces synaptic vesicle endocytosis in cerebral cortical neurons.

    Yepes, M; Wu, F; Torre, E; Cuellar-Giraldo, D; Jia, D; Cheng, L


    The release of the serine proteinase tissue-type plasminogen activator (tPA) from the presynaptic terminal of cerebral cortical neurons plays a central role in the development of synaptic plasticity, adaptation to metabolic stress and neuronal survival. Our earlier studies indicate that by inducing the recruitment of the cytoskeletal protein βII-spectrin and voltage-gated calcium channels to the active zone, tPA promotes Ca(2+)-dependent translocation of synaptic vesicles (SVs) to the synaptic release site where they release their load of neurotransmitters into the synaptic cleft. Here we used a combination of in vivo and in vitro experiments to investigate whether this effect leads to depletion of SVs in the presynaptic terminal. Our data indicate that tPA promotes SV endocytosis via a mechanism that does not require the conversion of plasminogen into plasmin. Instead, we show that tPA induces calcineurin-mediated dynamin I dephosphorylation, which is followed by dynamin I-induced recruitment of the actin-binding protein profilin II to the presynaptic membrane, and profilin II-induced F-actin formation. We report that this tPA-induced sequence of events leads to the association of newly formed SVs with F-actin clusters in the endocytic zone. In summary, the data presented here indicate that following the exocytotic release of neurotransmitters tPA activates the mechanism whereby SVs are retrieved from the presynaptic membrane and endocytosed to replenish the pool of vesicles available for a new cycle of exocytosis. Together, these results indicate that in murine cerebral cortical neurons tPA plays a central role coupling SVs exocytosis and endocytosis.

  7. Combined small-molecule inhibition accelerates the derivation of functional cortical neurons from human pluripotent stem cells.

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


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

  8. Stem cells decreased neuronal cell death after hypoxic stress in primary fetal rat neurons in vitro.

    Sakai, Tetsuro; Xu, Yan


    To explore stem cell-mediated neuronal protection through extracellular signaling pathways by transplanted stem cells, we sought to identify potential candidate molecules responsible for neuronal protection using an in vitro coculture system. Primary fetal rat hippocampal neurons underwent hypoxia (≤1% oxygen) for 96 h nad then were returned to a normoxic condition. The study group then received rat umbilical cord matrix-derived stem cells, while the control group received fresh media only. The experimental group showed decreased neuronal apoptosis compared to the control group [44.5 ± 1.6% vs. 71.0 ± 4.2% (mean ± SD, p = 0.0005) on day 5] and higher neuronal survival (4.9 ± 1.2 cells/100× field vs. 2.2 ± 0.3, p = 0.02 on day 5). Among 90 proteins evaluated using a protein array, stem cell coculture media showed increased protein secretion of TIMP-1 (5.61-fold), TIMP-2 (4.88), CNTF-Rα (3.42), activin A (2.20), fractalkine (2.04), CCR4 (2.02), and decreased secretion in MIP-2 (0.30-fold), AMPK α1 (0.43), TROY (0.48), and TIMP-3 (0.50). This study demonstrated that coculturing stem cells with primary neurons in vitro decreased neuronal cell death after hypoxia with significantly altered protein secretion. The results suggest that stem cells may offer neuronal protection through extracellular signaling.

  9. Neuroprotective effects of human telomerase reverse transcriptase on beta-amyloid fragment 25-35-treated human embryonic cortical neurons

    Lingping Kong; Lingzhi Wu; Jie Zhang; Yaping Liao; Huaqiao Wang


    BACKGROUND:Numerous current studies have suggested that human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT) gene has neuroprotective effects and can inhibit apoptosis induced by various cytotoxic stresses;however,the mechanism of action remains unknown.OBJECTIVE:To evaluate the neuroprotective effects and possible mechanism of action of hTERT gene transfection in human embryonic cortical neurons treated with beta-amyloid fragment 25-35 (Aβ25-35).DESIGN,TIME AND SETTING:The randomized,controlled and molecular biological studies were performed at the Department of Anatomy and Brain Research,Zhongshan School of Medicine,Sun Yat-sen University,China,from September 2005 to June 2008.MATERIALS:AdEasy-1 Expression System was gifted by Professor Guoquan Gao from Sun Yat-Sen University,China.Human cortical neurons were derived from 12-20 week old aborted fetuses,obtained from the Guangzhou Maternal and Child Health Hospital,China.Mouse anti-Cdk5 and mouse anti-p16 monoclonal antibodies (Lab Vision,USA),and mouse anti-hTERT monoclonal antibody (Epitomics,USA),were used in this study.METHODS:(1) Recombinant adenovirus vectors,encoding hTERT (Ad-hTERT) and green fluorescent protein (Ad-GFP),were constructed using the AdEasy-1 Expression System.Human embryonic cortical neurons in the Ad-hTERT group were transfected with Ad-hTERT for 1-21 days.Likewise,human embryonic cortical neurons in the Ad-GFP group were transfected with Ad-GFP for 1-21 days.Human embryonic cortical neurons in the control group were cultured as normal.(2) Human embryonic cortical neurons in the Ad-hTERT group were treated with 10 μmol/L Aβ25-35 for 24 hours.Normal human embryonic cortical neurons treated with 10 μmol/L Aβ25-35 for 24 hours served as a model group.Human embryonic cortical neurons in the Ad-GFP and control groups were not treated with Aβ25-35.MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:Expression of hTERT in human embryonic cortical neurons was evaluated by immunocytochemical staining and Western blot assay

  10. Synaptic responsiveness of cortical and thalamic neurones during various phases of slow sleep oscillation in cat.

    Timofeev, I; Contreras, D; Steriade, M


    1. The fluctuations during various phases of the slow sleep oscillation (< 1 Hz) in synaptic responsiveness of motor cortical (Cx), thalamic reticular (RE) and thalamocortical (TC) neurones were investigated intracellularly in cats under ketamine-xylazine anaesthesia. Orthodromic responses to stimuli applied to brachium conjunctivum (BC) axons and corticothalamic pathways were studied. The phases of slow oscillation consist of a long-hyperpolarized, followed by a sharp depth-negative EEG deflection and a series of faster waves that are associated with the depolarization of Cx and RE neurones, while TC cells display a sequence of IPSPs within the spindle frequency. 2. BC-evoked bisynaptic excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs) in Cx and RE neurones were drastically reduced in amplitude during the long-lasting hyperpolarization and the early part of the depolarizing phase. By contrast, the BC-evoked monosynaptic EPSPs of TC cells were not diminished during the depth-positive EEG wave, but the hyperpolarization during this phase of the slow oscillation prevented TC neurones transferring prethalamic signals to the cortex. 3. At variance with the diminished bisynaptic EPSPs evoked in response to BC stimuli during the long-lasting hyperpolarization, Cx-evoked monosynaptic EPSPs in Cx cells increased linearly with hyperpolarization during this phase of the slow oscillation. Similarly, the amplitudes of Cx-evoked EPSPs in RE and TC cells were not diminished during the long-lasting hyperpolarization. 4. The diminished responsiveness of Cx and RE neurones to prethalamic volleys during the long-lasting hyperpolarization is attributed to gating processes at the level of TC cells that, because of their hyperpolarization, do not transfer prethalamic information to further relays. PMID:8814620

  11. Use of cortical neuronal networks for in vitro material biocompatibility testing.

    Charkhkar, Hamid; Frewin, Christopher; Nezafati, Maysam; Knaack, Gretchen L; Peixoto, Nathalia; Saddow, Stephen E; Pancrazio, Joseph J


    Neural interfaces aim to restore neurological function lost during disease or injury. Novel implantable neural interfaces increasingly capitalize on novel materials to achieve microscale coupling with the nervous system. Like any biomedical device, neural interfaces should consist of materials that exhibit biocompatibility in accordance with the international standard ISO10993-5, which describes in vitro testing involving fibroblasts where cytotoxicity serves as the main endpoint. In the present study, we examine the utility of living neuronal networks as functional assays for in vitro material biocompatibility, particularly for materials that comprise implantable neural interfaces. Embryonic mouse cortical tissue was cultured to form functional networks where spontaneous action potentials, or spikes, can be monitored non-invasively using a substrate-integrated microelectrode array. Taking advantage of such a platform, we exposed established positive and negative control materials to the neuronal networks in a consistent method with ISO 10993-5 guidance. Exposure to the negative controls, gold and polyethylene, did not significantly change the neuronal activity whereas the positive controls, copper and polyvinyl chloride (PVC), resulted in reduction of network spike rate. We also compared the functional assay with an established cytotoxicity measure using L929 fibroblast cells. Our findings indicate that neuronal networks exhibit enhanced sensitivity to positive control materials. In addition, we assessed functional neurotoxicity of tungsten, a common microelectrode material, and two conducting polymer formulations that have been used to modify microelectrode properties for in vivo recording and stimulation. These data suggest that cultured neuronal networks are a useful platform for evaluating the functional toxicity of materials intended for implantation in the nervous system.

  12. Snapin Recruits Dynein to BDNF-TrkB Signaling Endosomes for Retrograde Axonal Transport and Is Essential for Dendrite Growth of Cortical Neurons

    Bing Zhou


    Full Text Available Neurotrophin signaling is crucial for neuron growth. While the “signaling endosomes” hypothesis is one of the accepted models, the molecular machinery that drives retrograde axonal transport of TrkB signaling endosomes is largely unknown. In particular, mechanisms recruiting dynein to TrkB signaling endosomes have not been elucidated. Here, using snapin deficient mice and gene rescue experiments combined with compartmentalized cultures of live cortical neurons, we reveal that Snapin, as a dynein adaptor, mediates retrograde axonal transport of TrkB signaling endosomes. Such a role is essential for dendritic growth of cortical neurons. Deleting snapin or disrupting Snapin-dynein interaction abolishes TrkB retrograde transport, impairs BDNF-induced retrograde signaling from axonal terminals to the nucleus, and decreases dendritic growth. Such defects were rescued by reintroducing the snapin gene. Our study indicates that Snapin-dynein coupling is one of the primary mechanisms driving BDNF-TrkB retrograde transport, thus providing mechanistic insights into the regulation of neuronal growth and survival.

  13. Aluminum—induced apoptosis in cultured cortical neurons and its effects on SAPK/JNK signal transduction pathway

    FuHJ; DongSZ


    Aluminum (Al) exposure and apoptotic cell death have been implicated in several neurodegenerative diseases.the mechanisms by which Al interacts with the nervous system are only partly understood.In this study,we used cultured cortical neurons to investigate the ability of Al to induce the apoptosis of neurons and to explore the role of SAPK/JNK signal transduction pathway on the apoptosis induced by Al.It was found that Al-induced degeneration of cortical neurons involved the DNA fragmentation characteristic of apoptosis.The rate of apoptosis increased significantly,which was measured by TdT-mediated dUTKP nick end labeling.Westerm blot analysis showed that SAPK/JNK activities of cortical neurons varied when the dose and exposure time of AlCl3 were different.Our study demonstrates that Al can induce the apoptosis of cortical neurons and SAPK/JNK signal transduction pathway may play a great role in the apoptosis.

  14. Potential protection of green tea polyphenols against 1800 MHz electromagnetic radiation-induced injury on rat cortical neurons.

    Liu, Mei-Li; Wen, Jian-Qiang; Fan, Yu-Bo


    Radiofrequency electromagnetic fields (EMF) are harmful to public health, but the certain anti-irradiation mechanism is not clear yet. The present study was performed to investigate the possible protective effects of green tea polyphenols against electromagnetic radiation-induced injury in the cultured rat cortical neurons. In this study, green tea polyphenols were used in the cultured cortical neurons exposed to 1800 MHz EMFs by the mobile phone. We found that the mobile phone irradiation for 24 h induced marked neuronal cell death in the MTT (3-(4,5-dimethylthiazole-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyl-tetrazolium bromide) and TUNEL (TdT mediated biotin-dUTP nicked-end labeling) assay, and protective effects of green tea polyphenols on the injured cortical neurons were demonstrated by testing the content of Bcl-2 Assaciated X protein (Bax) in the immunoprecipitation assay and Western blot assay. In our study results, the mobile phone irradiation-induced increases in the content of active Bax were inhibited significantly by green tea polyphenols, while the contents of total Bax had no marked changes after the treatment of green tea polyphenols. Our results suggested a neuroprotective effect of green tea polyphenols against the mobile phone irradiation-induced injury on the cultured rat cortical neurons.

  15. Mechanisms underlying attenuation of apoptosis of cortical neurons in the hypoxic brain by lfavonoids from the stems and leaves of Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi

    Guangxin Miao; Hongxiang Zhao; Ke Guo; Jianjun Cheng; Shufeng Zhang; Xiaofeng Zhang; Zhenling Cai; Hong Miao; Yazhen Shang


    Flavonoids from the stems and leaves of Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi, an antioxidant, marked-ly improve memory impairments and neuronal injuries. In the present study, primary cortical neurons of rats were exposed to potassium cyanide to establish a model of in vitro neural cell apoptosis. Inhibition of apoptosis by lfavonoids from the stems and leaves of Scutellaria baical-ensis Georgi at concentrations of 18.98, 37.36, and 75.92μg/mL was detected using this model. These lfavonoids dramatically increased cell survival, inhibited cell apoptosis and excessive pro-duction of malondialdehyde, and increased the activities of superoxide dismutase, glutathione peroxidase, and Na+-K+-ATPase in primary cortical neurons exposed to potassium cyanide. The lfavonoids from the stems and leaves of Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi were originally found to have a polyhydric structure and to protect against cerebral hypoxia in in vitro and in vivo models, including hypoxia induced by potassium cyanide or cerebral ischemia. The present study suggests that lfavonoids from the stems and leaves of Scutellaria baicalensis Georgi exert neuroprotective effects via modulation of oxidative stress, such as malondialdehyde, superoxide dismutase, gluta-thione peroxidase and Na+-K+-ATPase disorders induced by potassium cyanide.

  16. Effect of Anatomically Realistic Full-Head Model on Activation of Cortical Neurons in Subdural Cortical Stimulation—A Computational Study

    Seo, Hyeon; Kim, Donghyeon; Jun, Sung Chan


    Electrical brain stimulation (EBS) is an emerging therapy for the treatment of neurological disorders, and computational modeling studies of EBS have been used to determine the optimal parameters for highly cost-effective electrotherapy. Recent notable growth in computing capability has enabled researchers to consider an anatomically realistic head model that represents the full head and complex geometry of the brain rather than the previous simplified partial head model (extruded slab) that represents only the precentral gyrus. In this work, subdural cortical stimulation (SuCS) was found to offer a better understanding of the differential activation of cortical neurons in the anatomically realistic full-head model than in the simplified partial-head models. We observed that layer 3 pyramidal neurons had comparable stimulation thresholds in both head models, while layer 5 pyramidal neurons showed a notable discrepancy between the models; in particular, layer 5 pyramidal neurons demonstrated asymmetry in the thresholds and action potential initiation sites in the anatomically realistic full-head model. Overall, the anatomically realistic full-head model may offer a better understanding of layer 5 pyramidal neuronal responses. Accordingly, the effects of using the realistic full-head model in SuCS are compelling in computational modeling studies, even though this modeling requires substantially more effort.

  17. Ion channel density and threshold dynamics of repetitive firing in a cortical neuron model.

    Arhem, Peter; Blomberg, Clas


    Modifying the density and distribution of ion channels in a neuron (by natural up- and down-regulation, by pharmacological intervention or by spontaneous mutations) changes its activity pattern. In the present investigation, we analyze how the impulse patterns are regulated by the density of voltage-gated channels in a model neuron, based on voltage clamp measurements of hippocampal interneurons. At least three distinct oscillatory patterns, associated with three distinct regions in the Na-K channel density plane, were found. A stability analysis showed that the different regions are characterized by saddle-node, double-orbit, and Hopf bifurcation threshold dynamics, respectively. Single strongly graded action potentials occur in an area outside the oscillatory regions, but less graded action potentials occur together with repetitive firing over a considerable range of channel densities. The presently found relationship between channel densities and oscillatory behavior may be relevance for understanding principal spiking patterns of cortical neurons (regular firing and fast spiking). It may also be of relevance for understanding the action of pharmacological compounds on brain oscillatory activity.

  18. Lycopene Prevents Amyloid [Beta]-Induced Mitochondrial Oxidative Stress and Dysfunctions in Cultured Rat Cortical Neurons.

    Qu, Mingyue; Jiang, Zheng; Liao, Yuanxiang; Song, Zhenyao; Nan, Xinzhong


    Brains affected by Alzheimer's disease (AD) show a large spectrum of mitochondrial alterations at both morphological and genetic level. The causal link between β-amyloid (Aβ) and mitochondrial dysfunction has been established in cellular models of AD. We observed previously that lycopene, a member of the carotenoid family of phytochemicals, could counteract neuronal apoptosis and cell damage induced by Aβ and other neurotoxic substances, and that this neuroprotective action somehow involved the mitochondria. The present study aims to investigate the effects of lycopene on mitochondria in cultured rat cortical neurons exposed to Aβ. It was found that lycopene attenuated Aβ-induced oxidative stress, as evidenced by the decreased intracellular reactive oxygen species generation and mitochondria-derived superoxide production. Additionally, lycopene ameliorated Aβ-induced mitochondrial morphological alteration, opening of the mitochondrial permeability transition pores and the consequent cytochrome c release. Lycopene also improved mitochondrial complex activities and restored ATP levels in Aβ-treated neuron. Furthermore, lycopene prevented mitochondrial DNA damages and improved the protein level of mitochondrial transcription factor A in mitochondria. Those results indicate that lycopene protects mitochondria against Aβ-induced damages, at least in part by inhibiting mitochondrial oxidative stress and improving mitochondrial function. These beneficial effects of lycopene may account for its protection against Aβ-induced neurotoxicity.

  19. Cultured Cortical Neurons Can Perform Blind Source Separation According to the Free-Energy Principle.

    Takuya Isomura


    Full Text Available Blind source separation is the computation underlying the cocktail party effect--a partygoer can distinguish a particular talker's voice from the ambient noise. Early studies indicated that the brain might use blind source separation as a signal processing strategy for sensory perception and numerous mathematical models have been proposed; however, it remains unclear how the neural networks extract particular sources from a complex mixture of inputs. We discovered that neurons in cultures of dissociated rat cortical cells could learn to represent particular sources while filtering out other signals. Specifically, the distinct classes of neurons in the culture learned to respond to the distinct sources after repeating training stimulation. Moreover, the neural network structures changed to reduce free energy, as predicted by the free-energy principle, a candidate unified theory of learning and memory, and by Jaynes' principle of maximum entropy. This implicit learning can only be explained by some form of Hebbian plasticity. These results are the first in vitro (as opposed to in silico demonstration of neural networks performing blind source separation, and the first formal demonstration of neuronal self-organization under the free energy principle.

  20. Human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cortical neurons integrate in stroke-injured cortex and improve functional recovery.

    Tornero, Daniel; Wattananit, Somsak; Grønning Madsen, Marita; Koch, Philipp; Wood, James; Tatarishvili, Jemal; Mine, Yutaka; Ge, Ruimin; Monni, Emanuela; Devaraju, Karthikeyan; Hevner, Robert F; Brüstle, Oliver; Lindvall, Olle; Kokaia, Zaal


    Stem cell-based approaches to restore function after stroke through replacement of dead neurons require the generation of specific neuronal subtypes. Loss of neurons in the cerebral cortex is a major cause of stroke-induced neurological deficits in adult humans. Reprogramming of adult human somatic cells to induced pluripotent stem cells is a novel approach to produce patient-specific cells for autologous transplantation. Whether such cells can be converted to functional cortical neurons that survive and give rise to behavioural recovery after transplantation in the stroke-injured cerebral cortex is not known. We have generated progenitors in vitro, expressing specific cortical markers and giving rise to functional neurons, from long-term self-renewing neuroepithelial-like stem cells, produced from adult human fibroblast-derived induced pluripotent stem cells. At 2 months after transplantation into the stroke-damaged rat cortex, the cortically fated cells showed less proliferation and more efficient conversion to mature neurons with morphological and immunohistochemical characteristics of a cortical phenotype and higher axonal projection density as compared with non-fated cells. Pyramidal morphology and localization of the cells expressing the cortex-specific marker TBR1 in a certain layered pattern provided further evidence supporting the cortical phenotype of the fated, grafted cells, and electrophysiological recordings demonstrated their functionality. Both fated and non-fated cell-transplanted groups showed bilateral recovery of the impaired function in the stepping test compared with vehicle-injected animals. The behavioural improvement at this early time point was most likely not due to neuronal replacement and reconstruction of circuitry. At 5 months after stroke in immunocompromised rats, there was no tumour formation and the grafted cells exhibited electrophysiological properties of mature neurons with evidence of integration in host circuitry. Our

  1. Inhibition of Histone Deacetylase 3 (HDAC3) Mediates Ischemic Preconditioning and Protects Cortical Neurons against Ischemia in Rats

    Wu, Qimei; Zhang, Lei; Feng, Linyin


    Brain ischemic preconditioning (PC) provides vital insights into the endogenous protection against stroke. Genomic and epigenetic responses to PC condition the brain into a state of ischemic tolerance. Notably, PC induces the elevation of histone acetylation, consistent with evidence that histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors protect the brain from ischemic injury. However, less is known about the specific roles of HDACs in this process. HDAC3 has been implicated in several neurodegenerative conditions. Deletion of HDAC3 confers protection against neurotoxicity and neuronal injury. Here, we hypothesized that inhibition of HDAC3 may contribute to the neuronal survival elicited by PC. To address this notion, PC and transient middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) were conducted in Sprague-Dawley rats. Additionally, primary cultured cortical neurons were used to identify the modulators and effectors of HDAC3 involved in PC. We found that nuclear localization of HDAC3 was significantly reduced following PC in vivo and in vitro. Treatment with the HDAC3-specific inhibitor, RGFP966, mimicked the neuroprotective effects of PC 24 h and 7 days after MCAO, causing a reduced infarct volume and less Fluoro-Jade C staining. Improved functional outcomes were observed in the neurological score and rotarod test. We further showed that attenuated recruitment of HDAC3 to promoter regions following PC potentiates transcriptional initiation of genes including Hspa1a, Bcl2l1, and Prdx2, which may underlie the mechanism of protection. In addition, PC-activated calpains were implicated in the cleavage of HDAC3. Pretreatment with calpeptin blockaded the attenuated nuclear distribution of HDAC3 and the protective effect of PC in vivo. Collectively, these results demonstrate that the inhibition of HDAC3 preconditions the brain against ischemic insults, indicating a new approach to evoke endogenous protection against stroke. PMID:27965534

  2. Inhibition of Histone Deacetylase 3 (HDAC3 Mediates Ischemic Preconditioning and Protects Cortical Neurons against Ischemia in Rats

    Xiaoyu Yang


    Full Text Available Brain ischemic preconditioning (PC provides vital insights into the endogenous protection against stroke. Genomic and epigenetic responses to PC condition the brain into a state of ischemic tolerance. Notably, PC induces the elevation of histone acetylation, consistent with evidence that histone deacetylase (HDAC inhibitors protect the brain from ischemic injury. However, less is known about the specific roles of HDACs in this process. HDAC3 has been implicated in several neurodegenerative conditions. Deletion of HDAC3 confers protection against neurotoxicity and neuronal injury. Here, we hypothesized that inhibition of HDAC3 may contribute to the neuronal survival elicited by PC. To address this notion, PC and transient middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO were conducted in Sprague-Dawley rats. Additionally, primary cultured cortical neurons were used to identify the modulators and effectors of HDAC3 involved in PC. We found that nuclear localization of HDAC3 was significantly reduced following PC in vivo and in vitro. Treatment with the HDAC3-specific inhibitor, RGFP966, mimicked the neuroprotective effects of PC 24 h and 7 d after MCAO, causing a reduced infarct volume and less Fluoro-Jade C staining. Improved functional outcomes were observed in the neurological score and rotarod test. We further showed that attenuated recruitment of HDAC3 to promoter regions following PC potentiates transcriptional initiation of genes including Hspa1a, Bcl2l1, and Prdx2, which may underlie the mechanism of protection. In addition, PC-activated calpains were implicated in the cleavage of HDAC3. Pretreatment with calpeptin blockaded the attenuated nuclear distribution of HDAC3 and the protective effect of PC in vivo. Collectively, these results demonstrate that the inhibition of HDAC3 preconditions the brain against ischemic insults, indicating a new approach to evoke endogenous protection against stroke.

  3. Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation modulates cortical neuronal activity in Alzheimer’s Disease

    Sara eMarceglia


    Full Text Available Quantitative electroencephalography (qEEG showed that Alzheimer’s disease (AD is characterized by increased theta power, decreased alpha and beta power, and decreased coherence in the alpha and theta band in posterior regions. These abnormalities are thought to be associated with functional disconnections among cortical areas, death of cortical neurons, axonal pathology, and cholinergic deficits. Since transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS over the temporo-parietal area is thought to have beneficial effects in patients with AD, in this study we aimed to investigate whether tDCS benefits are related to tDCS-induced changes in cortical activity, as represented by qEEG.A weak anodal current (1.5 mA, 15 min was delivered bilaterally over the temporal-parietal lobe to 7 subjects with probable AD (Mini-Mental State Examination, MMSE score >20. EEG (21 electrodes, 10-20 international system was recorded for 5 minutes with eyes closed before (baseline, t0 and 30 minutes after anodal and cathodal tDCS ended (t1. At the same time points, patients performed a Word Recognition Task (WRT to assess working memory functions. The spectral power and the inter- and intra-hemispheric EEG coherence in different frequency bands (e.g., low frequencies, including delta and theta; high frequencies, including alpha and beta were calculated for each subject at t0 and t1. tDCS-induced changes in EEG neurophysiological markers were correlated with the performance of patients at the WRT.At baseline, qEEG features in AD patients confirmed that the decreased high frequency power was correlated with lower MMSE. After anodal tDCS, we observed an increase in the high-frequency power in the temporo-parietal area and an increase in the temporo-parieto-occipital coherence that correlated with the improvement at the WRT. In addition, cathodal tDCS produced a non-specific effect of decreased theta power all over the scalp that was not correlated with the clinical

  4. Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation Modulates Cortical Neuronal Activity in Alzheimer's Disease.

    Marceglia, Sara; Mrakic-Sposta, Simona; Rosa, Manuela; Ferrucci, Roberta; Mameli, Francesca; Vergari, Maurizio; Arlotti, Mattia; Ruggiero, Fabiana; Scarpini, Elio; Galimberti, Daniela; Barbieri, Sergio; Priori, Alberto


    Quantitative electroencephalography (qEEG) showed that Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by increased theta power, decreased alpha and beta power, and decreased coherence in the alpha and theta band in posterior regions. These abnormalities are thought to be associated with functional disconnections among cortical areas, death of cortical neurons, axonal pathology, and cholinergic deficits. Since transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS) over the temporo-parietal area is thought to have beneficial effects in patients with AD, in this study we aimed to investigate whether tDCS benefits are related to tDCS-induced changes in cortical activity, as represented by qEEG. A weak anodal current (1.5 mA, 15 min) was delivered bilaterally over the temporal-parietal lobe to seven subjects with probable AD (Mini-Mental State Examination, MMSE score >20). EEG (21 electrodes, 10-20 international system) was recorded for 5 min with eyes closed before (baseline, t0) and 30 min after anodal and cathodal tDCS ended (t1). At the same time points, patients performed a Word Recognition Task (WRT) to assess working memory functions. The spectral power and the inter- and intra-hemispheric EEG coherence in different frequency bands (e.g., low frequencies, including delta and theta; high frequencies, including alpha and beta) were calculated for each subject at t0 and t1. tDCS-induced changes in EEG neurophysiological markers were correlated with the performance of patients at the WRT. At baseline, qEEG features in AD patients confirmed that the decreased high frequency power was correlated with lower MMSE. After anodal tDCS, we observed an increase in the high-frequency power in the temporo-parietal area and an increase in the temporo-parieto-occipital coherence that correlated with the improvement at the WRT. In addition, cathodal tDCS produced a non-specific effect of decreased theta power all over the scalp that was not correlated with the clinical observation at the WRT

  5. IL-6 promotes regeneration and functional recovery after cortical spinal tract injury by reactivating intrinsic growth program of neurons and enhancing synapse formation.

    Yang, Ping; Wen, Huizhong; Ou, Shan; Cui, Jian; Fan, Dehua


    Most neurons in adult mammalian central nervous system (CNS) fail to regenerate their axons after injury. Peripherally conditioned primary sensory neurons have an increased capacity to regenerate their central processes. Recent studies demonstrate that a conditioning lesion increased intrinsic growth capability is associated with the up-regulation of a group of growth-associated genes, one of the most established is interleukin-6 (IL-6). However, the cellular and molecular mechanisms by which IL-6 exerts its beneficial effect on axonal regeneration and functional recovery remain to be elucidated. The purpose of this study is to further investigate the molecular mechanisms of IL-6 in promoting regeneration and functional recovery after spinal cord injury (SCI). Here, we demonstrate that in vitro administration of IL-6 enhances neurite outgrowth of neurons on an inhibitory substrate myelin proteins, accompanied by increased expression of growth-associated genes GAP-43, SPRR1A and Arginase I. In vivo, intrathecal delivery of IL-6 for 7 days after cortical spinal tract injury induces synaptic rearrangements of sprouting axons and increases the expression of mTOR in neurons surrounding the lesion site, accompanied by improved functional recovery. In conclusion, our results show that IL-6 increases the expression of growth-associated genes and induces the expression of mTOR in lesion adjacent neurons, resulting in reactivating the intrinsic growth program of neurons to promote axonal regrowth and functional recovery after SCI. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Understanding metal homeostasis in primary cultured neurons. Studies using single neuron subcellular and quantitative metallomics.

    Colvin, Robert A; Lai, Barry; Holmes, William R; Lee, Daewoo


    The purpose of this study was to demonstrate how single cell quantitative and subcellular metallomics inform us about both the spatial distribution and cellular mechanisms of metal buffering and homeostasis in primary cultured neurons from embryonic rat brain, which are often used as models of human disease involving metal dyshomeostasis. The present studies utilized synchrotron radiation X-ray fluorescence (SRXRF) and focused primarily on zinc and iron, two abundant metals in neurons that have been implicated in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. Total single cell contents for calcium, iron, zinc, copper, manganese, and nickel were determined. Resting steady state zinc showed a diffuse distribution in both soma and processes, best defined by the mass profile of the neuron with an enrichment in the nucleus compared with the cytoplasm. Zinc buffering and homeostasis was studied using two modes of cellular zinc loading - transporter and ionophore (pyrithione) mediated. Single neuron zinc contents were shown to statistically significantly increase by either loading method - ionophore: 160 million to 7 billion; transporter 160 million to 280 million atoms per neuronal soma. The newly acquired and buffered zinc still showed a diffuse distribution. Soma and processes have about equal abilities to take up zinc via transporter mediated pathways. Copper levels are distributed diffusely as well, but are relatively higher in the processes relative to zinc levels. Prior studies have observed iron puncta in certain cell types, but others have not. In the present study, iron puncta were characterized in several primary neuronal types. The results show that iron puncta could be found in all neuronal types studied and can account for up to 50% of the total steady state content of iron in neuronal soma. Although other metals can be present in iron puncta, they are predominantly iron containing and do not appear to be

  7. Bcl11a (Ctip1) Controls Migration of Cortical Projection Neurons through Regulation of Sema3c.

    Wiegreffe, Christoph; Simon, Ruth; Peschkes, Katharina; Kling, Carolin; Strehle, Michael; Cheng, Jin; Srivatsa, Swathi; Liu, Pentao; Jenkins, Nancy A; Copeland, Neal G; Tarabykin, Victor; Britsch, Stefan


    During neocortical development, neurons undergo polarization, oriented migration, and layer-type-specific differentiation. The transcriptional programs underlying these processes are not completely understood. Here, we show that the transcription factor Bcl11a regulates polarity and migration of upper layer neurons. Bcl11a-deficient late-born neurons fail to correctly switch from multipolar to bipolar morphology, resulting in impaired radial migration. We show that the expression of Sema3c is increased in migrating Bcl11a-deficient neurons and that Bcl11a is a direct negative regulator of Sema3c transcription. In vivo gain-of-function and rescue experiments demonstrate that Sema3c is a major downstream effector of Bcl11a required for the cell polarity switch and for the migration of upper layer neurons. Our data uncover a novel Bcl11a/Sema3c-dependent regulatory pathway used by migrating cortical neurons.

  8. Neuron-specific stimulus masking reveals interference in spike timing at the cortical level.

    Larson, Eric; Maddox, Ross K; Perrone, Ben P; Sen, Kamal; Billimoria, Cyrus P


    The auditory system is capable of robust recognition of sounds in the presence of competing maskers (e.g., other voices or background music). This capability arises despite the fact that masking stimuli can disrupt neural responses at the cortical level. Since the origins of such interference effects remain unknown, in this study, we work to identify and quantify neural interference effects that originate due to masking occurring within and outside receptive fields of neurons. We record from single and multi-unit auditory sites from field L, the auditory cortex homologue in zebra finches. We use a novel method called spike timing-based stimulus filtering that uses the measured response of each neuron to create an individualized stimulus set. In contrast to previous adaptive experimental approaches, which have typically focused on the average firing rate, this method uses the complete pattern of neural responses, including spike timing information, in the calculation of the receptive field. When we generate and present novel stimuli for each neuron that mask the regions within the receptive field, we find that the time-varying information in the neural responses is disrupted, degrading neural discrimination performance and decreasing spike timing reliability and sparseness. We also find that, while removing stimulus energy from frequency regions outside the receptive field does not significantly affect neural responses for many sites, adding a masker in these frequency regions can nonetheless have a significant impact on neural responses and discriminability without a significant change in the average firing rate. These findings suggest that maskers can interfere with neural responses by disrupting stimulus timing information with power either within or outside the receptive fields of neurons.

  9. Cadmium induces reactive oxygen species generation and lipid peroxidation in cortical neurons in culture.

    López, E; Arce, C; Oset-Gasque, M J; Cañadas, S; González, M P


    Cadmium is a toxic agent that it is also an environmental contaminant. Cadmium exposure may be implicated in some humans disorders related to hyperactivity and increased aggressiveness. This study presents data indicating that cadmium induces cellular death in cortical neurons in culture. This death could be mediated by an apoptotic and a necrotic mechanism. The apoptotic death may be mediated by oxidative stress with reactive oxygen species (ROS) formation which could be induced by mitochondrial membrane dysfunction since this cation produces: (a) depletion of mitochondrial membrane potential and (b) diminution of ATP levels with ATP release. Necrotic death could be mediated by lipid peroxidation induced by cadmium through an indirect mechanism (ROS formation). On the other hand, 40% of the cells survive cadmium action. This survival seems to be mediated by the ability of these cells to activate antioxidant defense systems, since cadmium reduced the intracellular glutathione levels and induced catalase and SOD activation in these cells.

  10. Chronic lithium treatment increased intracellular S100ß levels in rat primary neuronal culture.

    Masoumeh Emamghoreishi


    Full Text Available S100ß a neurotrophic factor mainly released by astrocytes, has been implicated in the pathogenesis of bipolar disorder. Thus, lithium may exert its neuroprotective effects to some extent through S100ß. Furthermore, the possible effects of lithium on astrocytes as well as on interactions between neurons and astrocytes as a part of its mechanisms of actions are unknown. This study was undertaken to determine the effect of lithium on S100β in neurons, astrocytes and a mixture of neurons and astrocytes. Rat primary astrocyte, neuronal and mixed neuro-astroglia cultures were prepared from cortices of 18-day's embryos. Cell cultures were exposed to lithium (1mM or vehicle for 1day (acute or 7 days (chronic. RT-PCR and ELISA determined S100β mRNA and intra- and extracellular protein levels. Chronic lithium treatment significantly increased intracellular S100β in neuronal and neuro-astroglia cultures in comparison to control cultures (P<0.05. Acute and chronic lithium treatments exerted no significant effects on intracellular S100β protein levels in astrocytes, and extracellular S100β protein levels in three studied cultures as compared to control cultures. Acute and chronic lithium treatments did not significantly alter S100β mRNA levels in three studied cultures, compared to control cultures. Chronic lithium treatment increased intracellular S100ß protein levels in a cell-type specific manner which may favor its neuroprotective action. The findings of this study suggest that lithium may exert its neuroprotective action, at least partly, by increasing neuronal S100ß level, with no effect on astrocytes or interaction between neurons and astrocytes.

  11. Neuronal dysfunction and disconnection of cortical hubs in non-demented subjects with elevated amyloid burden

    Drzezga, Alexander; Van Dijk, Koene R. A.; Sreenivasan, Aishwarya; Talukdar, Tanveer; Sullivan, Caroline; Schultz, Aaron P.; Sepulcre, Jorge; Putcha, Deepti; Greve, Doug; Johnson, Keith A.; Sperling, Reisa A.


    Disruption of functional connectivity between brain regions may represent an early functional consequence of β-amyloid pathology prior to clinical Alzheimer's disease. We aimed to investigate if non-demented older individuals with increased amyloid burden demonstrate disruptions of functional whole-brain connectivity in cortical hubs (brain regions typically highly connected to multiple other brain areas) and if these disruptions are associated with neuronal dysfunction as measured with fluorodeoxyglucose-positron emission tomography. In healthy subjects without cognitive symptoms and patients with mild cognitive impairment, we used positron emission tomography to assess amyloid burden and cerebral glucose metabolism, structural magnetic resonance imaging to quantify atrophy and novel resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging processing methods to calculate whole-brain connectivity. Significant disruptions of whole-brain connectivity were found in amyloid-positive patients with mild cognitive impairment in typical cortical hubs (posterior cingulate cortex/precuneus), strongly overlapping with regional hypometabolism. Subtle connectivity disruptions and hypometabolism were already present in amyloid-positive asymptomatic subjects. Voxel-based morphometry measures indicate that these findings were not solely a consequence of regional atrophy. Whole-brain connectivity values and metabolism showed a positive correlation with each other and a negative correlation with amyloid burden. These results indicate that disruption of functional connectivity and hypometabolism may represent early functional consequences of emerging molecular Alzheimer's disease pathology, evolving prior to clinical onset of dementia. The spatial overlap between hypometabolism and disruption of connectivity in cortical hubs points to a particular susceptibility of these regions to early Alzheimer's-type neurodegeneration and may reflect a link between synaptic dysfunction and functional

  12. Neurotoxicity of Ecstasy metabolites in rat cortical neurons, and influence of hyperthermia.

    Capela, João Paulo; Meisel, Andreas; Abreu, Artur Reis; Branco, Paula Sério; Ferreira, Luísa Maria; Lobo, Ana Maria; Remião, Fernando; Bastos, Maria Lurdes; Carvalho, Félix


    3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA or "Ecstasy") is a widely abused, psychoactive recreational drug. There is growing evidence that the MDMA neurotoxic profile may be highly dependent on both its hepatic metabolism and body temperature. Metabolism of MDMA involves N-demethylation to 3,4-methylenedioxyamphetamine (MDA), which is also a drug of abuse. MDMA and MDA are O-demethylenated to N-methyl-alpha-methyldopamine (N-Me-alpha-MeDA) and alpha-methyldopamine (alpha-MeDA), respectively, both of which are catechols that can undergo oxidation to the corresponding ortho-quinones. In the presence of glutathione (GSH), ortho-quinones may be conjugated with GSH to form glutathionyl adducts. In this study, we evaluated the neurotoxicity of MDMA and three of its metabolites obtained by synthesis, N-Me-alpha-MeDA, alpha-MeDA, and 5-(GSH)-alpha-MeDA [5-(glutathion-S-yl)-alpha-methyldopamine] in rat cortical neuronal serum-free cultures under normal (36.5 degrees C) and hyperthermic (40 degrees C) conditions. Cell viability was assessed, and the mechanism of cell death was also evaluated. Our study shows that these metabolites are more neurotoxic [5-(GSH)-alpha-MeDA being the most toxic] than the parent compound MDMA. The neurotoxicity of MDMA metabolites was partially prevented by the antioxidants N-acetylcystein and also, in a minor extent, by alpha-phenyl-N-tert-butyl nitrone. All the tested compounds induced apoptotic cell death in cortical neurons, and their neurotoxic effect was potentiated under hyperthermic conditions. These data suggest that MDMA metabolites, especially under hyperthermic conditions, contribute to MDMA-induced neurotoxicity.

  13. Restoration of Progranulin Expression Rescues Cortical Neuron Generation in an Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell Model of Frontotemporal Dementia

    Susanna Raitano


    Full Text Available To understand how haploinsufficiency of progranulin (PGRN causes frontotemporal dementia (FTD, we created induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs from patients carrying the GRNIVS1+5G > C mutation (FTD-iPSCs. FTD-iPSCs were fated to cortical neurons, the cells most affected in FTD. Although generation of neuroprogenitors was unaffected, their further differentiation into CTIP2-, FOXP2-, or TBR1-TUJ1 double-positive cortical neurons, but not motorneurons, was significantly decreased in FTD-neural progeny. Zinc finger nuclease-mediated introduction of GRN cDNA into the AAVS1 locus corrected defects in cortical neurogenesis, demonstrating that PGRN haploinsufficiency causes inefficient cortical neuron generation. RNA sequencing analysis confirmed reversal of the altered gene expression profile following genetic correction. We identified the Wnt signaling pathway as one of the top defective pathways in FTD-iPSC-derived neurons, which was reversed following genetic correction. Differentiation of FTD-iPSCs in the presence of a WNT inhibitor mitigated defective corticogenesis. Therefore, we demonstrate that PGRN haploinsufficiency hampers corticogenesis in vitro.

  14. Neuron Types in the Presumptive Primary Somatosensory Cortex of the Florida Manatee (Trichechus manatus latirostris).

    Reyes, Laura D; Stimpson, Cheryl D; Gupta, Kanika; Raghanti, Mary Ann; Hof, Patrick R; Reep, Roger L; Sherwood, Chet C


    Within afrotherians, sirenians are unusual due to their aquatic lifestyle, large body size and relatively large lissencephalic brain. However, little is known about the neuron type distributions of the cerebral cortex in sirenians within the context of other afrotherians and aquatic mammals. The present study investigated two cortical regions, dorsolateral cortex area 1 (DL1) and cluster cortex area 2 (CL2), in the presumptive primary somatosensory cortex (S1) in Florida manatees (Trichechus manatus latirostris) to characterize cyto- and chemoarchitecture. The mean neuron density for both cortical regions was 35,617 neurons/mm(3) and fell within the 95% prediction intervals relative to brain mass based on a reference group of afrotherians and xenarthrans. Densities of inhibitory interneuron subtypes labeled against calcium-binding proteins and neuropeptide Y were relatively low compared to afrotherians and xenarthrans and also formed a small percentage of the overall population of inhibitory interneurons as revealed by GAD67 immunoreactivity. Nonphosphorylated neurofilament protein-immunoreactive (NPNFP-ir) neurons comprised a mean of 60% of neurons in layer V across DL1 and CL2. DL1 contained a higher percentage of NPNFP-ir neurons than CL2, although CL2 had a higher variety of morphological types. The mean percentage of NPNFP-ir neurons in the two regions of the presumptive S1 were low compared to other afrotherians and xenarthrans but were within the 95% prediction intervals relative to brain mass, and their morphologies were comparable to those found in other afrotherians and xenarthrans. Although this specific pattern of neuron types and densities sets the manatee apart from other afrotherians and xenarthrans, the manatee isocortex does not appear to be explicitly adapted for an aquatic habitat. Many of the features that are shared between manatees and cetaceans are also shared with a diverse array of terrestrial mammals and likely represent highly conserved

  15. Ultrastructural changes of rat cortical neurons following ligustrazine intervention for cerebral ischemia/reperfusion injury

    Hui Zhang; Jianfeng Dong; Qiuzhen Zhao; Wen Song; Aihua Bo


    low-dose group and ligustrazine high-dose group received ligustrazine injections, 50 mg/kg and 100 mg/kg, respectively. Samples were collected at the same time as the model group.MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Alterations of the neuronal ultrastructure and main organelles were ob-served by electron microscopy.RESULTS: Forty Wistar rats were included in the final analysis. Plentiful ribosome and rough endoplasmic reticulum existed in the cytoplasm of cortical neurons in the normal group. Edema existed in the nucleus and cytoplasm of neurons in the model group. The cell membrane was damaged, resulting in the external erup-tion of certain cellular organelles. In the low-dose ligustrazine group, neuronal swelling was decreased in the cytoplasm, whereas cellular organelles were relatively increased. However, the mitochondria remained swollen. The double layer structure disappeared in parts of the mitochondrial membrane. The caryotheca was still broken, and neuronal damage was significantly decreased in the high-dose ligustrazine group. In ad-dition, cytoplasmic swelling was reduced andmost part of caryotheca was complete. Fragmentation of the cellular membrane was not detected. Mitochondrial cristae and the lysosome could also be detected. The number of rough endoplasmic reticulum and free ribosomes was increased, and the structure of great part of caryotheca was clear. In addition, the number of nuclear pore was increased. However, the nuclear hetero-chromatin was relatively reduced.CONCLUSION: In the rat, the protective effects of ligustrazine were significant on neuronal membrane structures and main organelles after cerebral ischemia/reperfusion. There was a dose-dependent effect be-tween neuronal changes and Ligustrazine.

  16. Behaviorally relevant burst coding in primary sensory neurons.

    Sabourin, Patrick; Pollack, Gerald S


    Bursts of action potentials in sensory interneurons are believed to signal the occurrence of particularly salient stimulus features. Previous work showed that bursts in an identified, ultrasound-tuned interneuron (AN2) of the cricket Teleogryllus oceanicus code for conspicuous increases in amplitude of an ultrasound stimulus, resulting in behavioral responses that are interpreted as avoidance of echolocating bats. We show that the primary sensory neurons that inform AN2 about high-frequency acoustic stimuli also produce bursts. As is the case for AN2, bursts in sensory neurons perform better as feature detectors than isolated, nonburst, spikes. Bursting is temporally correlated between sensory neurons, suggesting that on occurrence of a salient stimulus feature, AN2 will receive strong synaptic input in the form of coincident bursts, from several sensory neurons, and that this might result in bursting in AN2. Our results show that an important feature of the temporal structure of interneuron spike trains can be established at the earliest possible level of sensory processing, i.e., that of the primary sensory neuron.

  17. The Fas/Fas ligand death receptor pathway contributes to phenylalanine-induced apoptosis in cortical neurons.

    Xiaodong Huang

    Full Text Available Phenylketonuria (PKU, an autosomal recessive disorder of amino acid metabolism caused by mutations in the phenylalanine hydroxylase (PAH gene, leads to childhood mental retardation by exposing neurons to cytotoxic levels of phenylalanine (Phe. A recent study showed that the mitochondria-mediated (intrinsic apoptotic pathway is involved in Phe-induced apoptosis in cultured cortical neurons, but it is not known if the death receptor (extrinsic apoptotic pathway and endoplasmic reticulum (ER stress-associated apoptosis also contribute to neurodegeneration in PKU. To answer this question, we used specific inhibitors to block each apoptotic pathway in cortical neurons under neurotoxic levels of Phe. The caspase-8 inhibitor Z-IETD-FMK strongly attenuated apoptosis in Phe-treated neurons (0.9 mM, 18 h, suggesting involvement of the Fas receptor (FasR-mediated cell death receptor pathway in Phe toxicity. In addition, Phe significantly increased cell surface Fas expression and formation of the Fas/FasL complex. Blocking Fas/FasL signaling using an anti-Fas antibody markedly inhibited apoptosis caused by Phe. In contrast, blocking the ER stress-induced cell death pathway with salubrinal had no effect on apoptosis in Phe-treated cortical neurons. These experiments demonstrate that the Fas death receptor pathway contributes to Phe-induced apoptosis and suggest that inhibition of the death receptor pathway may be a novel target for neuroprotection in PKU patients.

  18. Regulation of action potential waveforms by axonal GABAA receptors in cortical pyramidal neurons.

    Yang Xia

    Full Text Available GABAA receptors distributed in somatodendritic compartments play critical roles in regulating neuronal activities, including spike timing and firing pattern; however, the properties and functions of GABAA receptors at the axon are still poorly understood. By recording from the cut end (bleb of the main axon trunk of layer -5 pyramidal neurons in prefrontal cortical slices, we found that currents evoked by GABA iontophoresis could be blocked by picrotoxin, indicating the expression of GABAA receptors in axons. Stationary noise analysis revealed that single-channel properties of axonal GABAA receptors were similar to those of somatic receptors. Perforated patch recording with gramicidin revealed that the reversal potential of the GABA response was more negative than the resting membrane potential at the axon trunk, suggesting that GABA may hyperpolarize the axonal membrane potential. Further experiments demonstrated that the activation of axonal GABAA receptors regulated the amplitude and duration of action potentials (APs and decreased the AP-induced Ca2+ transients at the axon. Together, our results indicate that the waveform of axonal APs and the downstream Ca2+ signals are modulated by axonal GABAA receptors.

  19. Herpes Simplex Virus-Type1 (HSV-1) Impairs DNA Repair in Cortical Neurons.

    De Chiara, Giovanna; Racaniello, Mauro; Mollinari, Cristiana; Marcocci, Maria Elena; Aversa, Giorgia; Cardinale, Alessio; Giovanetti, Anna; Garaci, Enrico; Palamara, Anna Teresa; Merlo, Daniela


    Several findings suggest that Herpes simplex virus-1 (HSV-1) infection plays a role in the neurodegenerative processes that characterize Alzheimer's disease (AD), but the underlying mechanisms have yet to be fully elucidated. Here we show that HSV-1 productive infection in cortical neurons causes the accumulation of DNA lesions that include both single (SSBs) and double strand breaks (DSBs), which are reported to be implicated in the neuronal loss observed in neurodegenerative diseases. We demonstrate that HSV-1 downregulates the expression level of Ku80, one of the main components of non-homologous end joining (NHEJ), a major pathway for the repair of DSBs. We also provide data suggesting that HSV-1 drives Ku80 for proteasomal degradation and impairs NHEJ activity, leading to DSB accumulation. Since HSV-1 usually causes life-long recurrent infections, it is possible to speculate that cumulating damages, including those occurring on DNA, may contribute to virus induced neurotoxicity and neurodegeneration, further suggesting HSV-1 as a risk factor for neurodegenerative conditions.

  20. Synergistic regulation of glutamatergic transmission by serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors in prefrontal cortical neurons.

    Yuen, Eunice Y; Qin, Luye; Wei, Jing; Liu, Wenhua; Liu, Aiyi; Yan, Zhen


    The monoamine system in the prefrontal cortex has been implicated in various mental disorders and has been the major target of anxiolytics and antidepressants. Clinical studies show that serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) produce better therapeutic effects than single selective reuptake inhibitors, but the underlying mechanisms are largely unknown. Here, we found that low dose SNRIs, by acting on 5-HT(1A) and α2-adrenergic receptors, synergistically reduced AMPA receptor (AMPAR)-mediated excitatory postsynaptic currents and AMPAR surface expression in prefrontal cortex pyramidal neurons via a mechanism involving Rab5/dynamin-mediated endocytosis of AMPARs. The synergistic effect of SNRIs on AMPARs was blocked by inhibition of activator of G protein signaling 3, a G protein modulator that prevents reassociation of G(i) protein α subunit and prolongs the βγ-mediated signaling pathway. Moreover, the depression of AMPAR-mediated excitatory postsynaptic currents by SNRIs required p38 kinase activity, which was increased by 5-HT(1A) and α2-adrenergic receptor co-activation in an activator of G protein signaling 3-dependent manner. These results have revealed a potential mechanism for the synergy between the serotonin and norepinephrine systems in the regulation of glutamatergic transmission in cortical neurons.

  1. Herpes Simplex Virus-Type1 (HSV-1) Impairs DNA Repair in Cortical Neurons

    De Chiara, Giovanna; Racaniello, Mauro; Mollinari, Cristiana; Marcocci, Maria Elena; Aversa, Giorgia; Cardinale, Alessio; Giovanetti, Anna; Garaci, Enrico; Palamara, Anna Teresa; Merlo, Daniela


    Several findings suggest that Herpes simplex virus-1 (HSV-1) infection plays a role in the neurodegenerative processes that characterize Alzheimer’s disease (AD), but the underlying mechanisms have yet to be fully elucidated. Here we show that HSV-1 productive infection in cortical neurons causes the accumulation of DNA lesions that include both single (SSBs) and double strand breaks (DSBs), which are reported to be implicated in the neuronal loss observed in neurodegenerative diseases. We demonstrate that HSV-1 downregulates the expression level of Ku80, one of the main components of non-homologous end joining (NHEJ), a major pathway for the repair of DSBs. We also provide data suggesting that HSV-1 drives Ku80 for proteasomal degradation and impairs NHEJ activity, leading to DSB accumulation. Since HSV-1 usually causes life-long recurrent infections, it is possible to speculate that cumulating damages, including those occurring on DNA, may contribute to virus induced neurotoxicity and neurodegeneration, further suggesting HSV-1 as a risk factor for neurodegenerative conditions. PMID:27803664

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

    Huang, Chih-Hsu; Lin, Chou-Ching K; Ju, Ming-Shaung


    Compared with the Monte Carlo method, the population density method is efficient for modeling collective dynamics of neuronal populations in human brain. In this method, a population density function describes the probabilistic distribution of states of all neurons in the population and it is governed by a hyperbolic partial differential equation. In the past, the problem was mainly solved by using the finite difference method. In a previous study, a continuous Galerkin finite element method was found better than the finite difference method for solving the hyperbolic partial differential equation; however, the population density function often has discontinuity and both methods suffer from a numerical stability problem. The goal of this study is to improve the numerical stability of the solution using discontinuous Galerkin finite element method. To test the performance of the new approach, interaction of a population of cortical pyramidal neurons and a population of thalamic neurons was simulated. The numerical results showed good agreement between results of discontinuous Galerkin finite element and Monte Carlo methods. The convergence and accuracy of the solutions are excellent. The numerical stability problem could be resolved using the discontinuous Galerkin finite element method which has total-variation-diminishing property. The efficient approach will be employed to simulate the electroencephalogram or dynamics of thalamocortical network which involves three populations, namely, thalamic reticular neurons, thalamocortical neurons and cortical pyramidal neurons.

  3. Ephrin-B1 controls the columnar distribution of cortical pyramidal neurons by restricting their tangential migration.

    Dimidschstein, Jordane; Passante, Lara; Dufour, Audrey; van den Ameele, Jelle; Tiberi, Luca; Hrechdakian, Tatyana; Adams, Ralf; Klein, Rüdiger; Lie, Dieter Chichung; Jossin, Yves; Vanderhaeghen, Pierre


    Neurons of the cerebral cortex are organized in layers and columns. Unlike laminar patterning, the mechanisms underlying columnar organization remain largely unexplored. Here, we show that ephrin-B1 plays a key role in this process through the control of nonradial steps of migration of pyramidal neurons. In vivo gain of function of ephrin-B1 resulted in a reduction of tangential motility of pyramidal neurons, leading to abnormal neuronal clustering. Conversely, following genetic disruption of ephrin-B1, cortical neurons displayed a wider lateral dispersion, resulting in enlarged ontogenic columns. Dynamic analyses revealed that ephrin-B1 controls the lateral spread of pyramidal neurons by limiting neurite extension and tangential migration during the multipolar phase. Furthermore, we identified P-Rex1, a guanine-exchange factor for Rac3, as a downstream ephrin-B1 effector required to control migration during the multipolar phase. Our results demonstrate that ephrin-B1 inhibits nonradial migration of pyramidal neurons, thereby controlling the pattern of cortical columns.

  4. Exposure to 1800 MHz radiofrequency radiation induces oxidative damage to mitochondrial DNA in primary cultured neurons.

    Xu, Shangcheng; Zhou, Zhou; Zhang, Lei; Yu, Zhengping; Zhang, Wei; Wang, Yuan; Wang, Xubu; Li, Maoquan; Chen, Yang; Chen, Chunhai; He, Mindi; Zhang, Guangbin; Zhong, Min


    Increasing evidence indicates that oxidative stress may be involved in the adverse effects of radiofrequency (RF) radiation on the brain. Because mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) defects are closely associated with various nervous system diseases and mtDNA is particularly susceptible to oxidative stress, the purpose of this study was to determine whether radiofrequency radiation can cause oxidative damage to mtDNA. In this study, we exposed primary cultured cortical neurons to pulsed RF electromagnetic fields at a frequency of 1800 MHz modulated by 217 Hz at an average special absorption rate (SAR) of 2 W/kg. At 24 h after exposure, we found that RF radiation induced a significant increase in the levels of 8-hydroxyguanine (8-OHdG), a common biomarker of DNA oxidative damage, in the mitochondria of neurons. Concomitant with this finding, the copy number of mtDNA and the levels of mitochondrial RNA (mtRNA) transcripts showed an obvious reduction after RF exposure. Each of these mtDNA disturbances could be reversed by pretreatment with melatonin, which is known to be an efficient antioxidant in the brain. Together, these results suggested that 1800 MHz RF radiation could cause oxidative damage to mtDNA in primary cultured neurons. Oxidative damage to mtDNA may account for the neurotoxicity of RF radiation in the brain.

  5. Age-Dependent Cortical Thinning of Peripheral Visual Field Representations in Primary Visual Cortex.

    Griffis, Joseph C; Burge, Wesley K; Visscher, Kristina M


    The cerebral cortex changes throughout the lifespan, and the cortical gray matter in many brain regions becomes thinner with advancing age. Effects of aging on cortical thickness (CT) have been observed in many brain regions, including areas involved in basic perceptual functions such as processing visual inputs. An important property of early visual cortices is their topographic organization-the cortical structure of early visual areas forms a topographic map of retinal inputs. Primary visual cortex (V1) is considered to be the most basic cortical area in the visual processing hierarchy, and is topographically organized from posterior (central visual representation) to anterior (peripheral visual representation) along the calcarine sulcus. Some studies have reported strong age-dependent cortical thinning in portions of V1 that likely correspond to peripheral visual representations, while there is less evidence of substantial cortical thinning in central V1. However, the effect of aging on CT in V1 as a function of its topography has not been directly investigated. To address this gap in the literature, we estimated the CT of different eccentricity sectors in V1 using T1-weighted MRI scans acquired from groups of healthy younger and older adults, and then assessed whether between-group differences in V1 CT depended on cortical eccentricity. These analyses revealed age-dependent cortical thinning specific to peripheral visual field representations in anterior portions of V1, but did not provide evidence for age-dependent cortical thinning in other portions of V1. Additional analyses found similar effects when analyses were restricted to the gyral crown, sulcul depth and sulcul wall, indicating that these effects are not likely due to differences in gyral/sulcul contributions to our regions of interest (ROI). Importantly, this finding indicates that age-dependent changes in cortical structure may differ among functionally distinct zones within larger canonical

  6. Dendritic Na(+) spikes enable cortical input to drive action potential output from hippocampal CA2 pyramidal neurons.

    Sun, Qian; Srinivas, Kalyan V; Sotayo, Alaba; Siegelbaum, Steven A


    Synaptic inputs from different brain areas are often targeted to distinct regions of neuronal dendritic arbors. Inputs to proximal dendrites usually produce large somatic EPSPs that efficiently trigger action potential (AP) output, whereas inputs to distal dendrites are greatly attenuated and may largely modulate AP output. In contrast to most other cortical and hippocampal neurons, hippocampal CA2 pyramidal neurons show unusually strong excitation by their distal dendritic inputs from entorhinal cortex (EC). In this study, we demonstrate that the ability of these EC inputs to drive CA2 AP output requires the firing of local dendritic Na(+) spikes. Furthermore, we find that CA2 dendritic geometry contributes to the efficient coupling of dendritic Na(+) spikes to AP output. These results provide a striking example of how dendritic spikes enable direct cortical inputs to overcome unfavorable distal synaptic locale to trigger axonal AP output and thereby enable efficient cortico-hippocampal information flow.

  7. Piracetam ameliorated oxygen and glucose deprivation-induced injury in rat cortical neurons via inhibition of oxidative stress, excitatory amino acids release and P53/Bax.

    He, Zhi; Hu, Min; Zha, Yun-hong; Li, Zi-cheng; Zhao, Bo; Yu, Ling-ling; Yu, Min; Qian, Ying


    Our previous work has demonstrated that piracetam inhibited the decrease in amino acid content induced by chronic hypoperfusion, ameliorated the dysfunction of learning and memory in a hypoperfusion rat model, down-regulated P53, and BAX protein, facilitated the synaptic plasticity, and may be helpful in the treatment of vascular dementia. To explore the precise mechanism, the present study further evaluated effects of piracetam on Oxygen and glucose deprivation (OGD)-induced neuronal damage in rat primary cortical cells. The addition of piracetam to the cultured cells 12 h before OGD for 4 h significantly reduced neuronal damage as determined by MTT (3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide) assay and lactate dehydrogenase release experiments. Piracetam also lowered the levels of malondialdehyde, nitrogen monoxidum, and xanthine oxidase which was increased in the OGD cells, and enhanced the activities of superoxide dismutase and glutathione peroxidase, which were decreased in the OGD cells. We also demonstrated that piracetam could decrease glutamate and aspartate release when cortical cells were subjected to OGD. Furthermore, Western blot study demonstrated that piracetam attenuated the increased expression of P53 and BAX protein in OGD cells. These observations demonstrated that piracetam reduced OGD-induced neuronal damage by inhibiting the oxidative stress and decreasing excitatory amino acids release and lowering P53/Bax protein expression in OGD cells.

  8. Cortical thickness development of human primary visual cortex related to the age of blindness onset.

    Li, Qiaojun; Song, Ming; Xu, Jiayuan; Qin, Wen; Yu, Chunshui; Jiang, Tianzi


    Blindness primarily induces structural alteration in the primary visual cortex (V1). Some studies have found that the early blind subjects had a thicker V1 compared to sighted controls, whereas late blind subjects showed no significant differences in the V1. This implies that the age of blindness onset may exert significant effects on the development of cortical thickness of the V1. However, no previous research used a trajectory of the age of blindness onset-related changes to investigate these effects. Here we explored this issue by mapping the cortical thickness trajectory of the V1 against the age of blindness onset using data from 99 blind individuals whose age of blindness onset ranged from birth to 34 years. We found that the cortical thickness of the V1 could be fitted well with a quadratic curve in both the left (F = 11.59, P = 3 × 10(-5)) and right hemispheres (F = 6.54, P = 2 × 10(-3)). Specifically, the cortical thickness of the V1 thinned rapidly during childhood and adolescence and did not change significantly thereafter. This trend was not observed in the primary auditory cortex (A1), primary motor cortex (M1), or primary somatosensory cortex (S1). These results provide evidence that an onset of blindness before adulthood significantly affects the cortical thickness of the V1 and suggest a critical period for cortical development of the human V1.

  9. Localization of SSeCKS in unmyelinated primary sensory neurons

    Siegel Sandra M


    Full Text Available Abstract Background SSeCKS (Src SupprEssed C Kinase Substrate is a proposed protein kinase C substrate/A kinase anchoring protein (AKAP that has recently been characterized in the rat peripheral nervous system. It has been shown that approximately 40% of small primary sensory neurons contain SSeCKS-immunoreactivity in a population largely separate from substance P (95.2%, calcitonin gene related peptide (95.3%, or fluoride resistant acid phosphatase (55.0% labeled cells. In the spinal cord, it was found that SSeCKS-immunoreactive axon collaterals terminate in the dorsal third of lamina II outer in a region similar to that of unmyelinated C-, or small diameter myelinated Aδ-, fibers. However, the precise characterization of the anatomical profile of the primary sensory neurons containing SSeCKS remains to be determined. Here, immunohistochemical labeling at the light and ultrastructural level is used to clarify the myelination status of SSeCKS-containing sensory neuron axons and to further clarify the morphometric, and provide insight into the functional, classification of SSeCKS-IR sensory neurons. Methods Colocalization studies of SSeCKS with myelination markers, ultrastructural localization of SSeCKS labeling and ablation of largely unmyelinated sensory fibers by neonatal capsaicin administration were all used to establish whether SSeCKS containing sensory neurons represent a subpopulation of unmyelinated primary sensory C-fibers. Results Double labeling studies of SSeCKS with CNPase in the dorsal horn and Pzero in the periphery showed that SSeCKS immunoreactivity was observed predominantly in association with unmyelinated primary sensory fibers. At the ultrastructural level, SSeCKS immunoreactivity was most commonly associated with axonal membrane margins of unmyelinated fibers. In capsaicin treated rats, SSeCKS immunoreactivity was essentially obliterated in the dorsal horn while in dorsal root ganglia quantitative analysis revealed a 43

  10. Imprint lithography provides topographical nanocues to guide cell growth in primary cortical cell culture

    Xie, Sijia; Lüttge, Regina


    In this paper, we describe a technology platform to study the effect of nanocues on the cell growth direction in primary cortical cell culture. Topographical cues to cells are provided using nanoscale features created by Jet and Flash Imprint Lithography, coated with polyethylenimine. We

  11. Dibenzocyclooctadiene lignans from Schisandra chinensis protect primary cultures of rat cortical cells from glutamate-induced toxicity.

    Kim, So Ra; Lee, Mi Kyeong; Koo, Kyung Ah; Kim, Seung Hyun; Sung, Sang Hyun; Lee, Na Gyong; Markelonis, George J; Oh, Tae H; Yang, Jae Ho; Kim, Young Choong


    A methanolic extract of dried Schisandra fruit (Schisandra chinensis Baill.; Schisandraceae) significantly attenuated the neurotoxicity induced by L-glutamate in primary cultures of rat cortical cells. Five dibenzocyclooctadiene lignans (deoxyschisandrin, gomisin N, gomisin A, schisandrin, and wuweizisu C) were isolated from the methanolic extract; their protective effects against glutamate-induced neurotoxicity were then evaluated. Among the five lignans, deoxyschisandrin, gomisin N, and wuweizisu C significantly attenuated glutamate-induced neurotoxicity as measured by 1). an inhibition in the increase of intracellular [Ca(2+)]; 2). an improvement in the glutathione defense system, the level of glutathione, and the activity of glutathione peroxidase; and 3). an inhibition in the formation of cellular peroxide. These results suggest that dibenzocyclooctadiene lignans from Schisandra chinensis may possess therapeutic potential against oxidative neuronal damage induced by excitotoxin.

  12. Objective classification of motion- and direction-sensitive neurons in primary somatosensory cortex of awake monkeys.

    Warren, S; Hamalainen, H A; Gardner, E P


    In order to classify movement-sensitive neurons in SI cortex, and to estimate their relative distribution, we have developed a new simple method for controlled motion of textured surfaces across the skin, as well as a set of objective criteria for determining direction selectivity. Moving stimuli were generated using 5 mm thick precision gear wheels, whose teeth formed a grafting. They were mounted on the shafts of low-torque potentiometers (to measure the speed and direction of movement) and rolled manually across the skin using the potentiometer shaft as an axle. As the grafting wheel was advanced, its ridges sequentially contacted a specific set of points on the skin, leaving gaps of defined spacing that were unstimulated. This stimulus was reproducible from trial to trial and produced little distention of the skin. Three objective criteria were used to categorize responses: the ratio of responses to motion in the most and least preferred directions [direction index (DI)], the difference between mean firing rates in the two directions divided by the average standard deviation [index of discriminability (delta'e)], and statistical tests. Neurons were classified as direction sensitive if DI greater than 35, delta's greater than or equal to 1.35 (equivalent to 75% correct discrimination by an unbiased observer), and firing rates in most- and least-preferred directions were significantly different (P less than 0.05). Good agreement was found between the three classification schemes. Recordings were made from 1,020 cortical neurons in the hand and forearm regions of primary somatosensory cortex (areas 3b, 1 and 2) of five macaque monkeys. Tangential motion across the skin was found to be an extremely effective stimulus for SI cortical neurons. Two hundred eighty six of 757 tactile neurons (38%) responded more vigorously to moving stimuli than to pressure or tapping the skin. One hundred twenty-one cells were tested with moving gratings and were classified according

  13. MeCP2 mutation results in compartment-specific reductions in dendritic branching and spine density in layer 5 motor cortical neurons of YFP-H mice.

    David P Stuss

    Full Text Available Rett Syndrome (RTT is a neurodevelopmental disorder predominantly caused by mutations in the X-linked gene MECP2. A primary feature of the syndrome is the impaired maturation and maintenance of excitatory synapses in the central nervous system (CNS. Different RTT mouse models have shown that particular Mecp2 mutations have highly variable effects on neuronal architecture. Distinguishing MeCP2 mutant cellular phenotypes therefore demands analysis of specific mutations in well-defined neuronal subpopulations. We examined a transgenically labeled subset of cortical neurons in YFP-H mice crossed with the Mecp2(tm1.1Jae mutant line. YFP(+ Layer 5 pyramidal neurons in the motor cortex of wildtype and hemizygous mutant male mice were examined for differences in dendrite morphology and spine density. Total basal dendritic length was decreased by 18.6% due to both shorter dendrites and reduced branching proximal to the soma. Tangential dendrite lengths in the apical tuft were reduced by up to 26.6%. Spine density was reduced by 47.4% in the apical tuft and 54.5% in secondary apical dendrites, but remained unaffected in primary apical and proximal basal dendrites. We also found that MeCP2 mutation reduced the number of YFP(+ cells in YFP-H mice by up to 72% in various cortical regions without affecting the intensity of YFP expression in individual cells. Our results support the view that the effects of MeCP2 mutation are highly context-dependent and cannot be generalized across mutation types and cell populations.

  14. Oxygen flux reduces Cux1 positive neurons and cortical growth in a gestational rodent model of growth restriction.

    Fletcher, Elaine; Wade, Jean; Georgala, Petrina A; Gillespie, Trudi L; Price, David J; Pilley, Elizabeth; Becher, Julie-Clare


    The mammalian cerebral cortex forms in an inside-out manner, establishing deep cortical layers before superficial layers and is regulated by transcription factors which influence cell differentiation. Preterm birth interrupts the trajectory of normal neurodevelopment and adverse perinatal exposures have been implicated in cortical injury. We hypothesise that growth restriction (GR) and fluctuating hyperoxia (ΔO2) impair cortical laminar development. Sprague-Dawley rats received 18% (non-restricted, NR) or 9% (growth restricted, GR) protein diet from E15-P7. Litters were reared in air or fluctuating hyperoxia (circa 10kPa) from P0 to P7. Cortical laminae were stained and measured. Neuronal subtypes were quantified using immunofluorescence for subtype-specific transcription factors (Satb2, Cux1, Ctip2, Tbr1). ΔO2 did not affect brain weight at P7 but reduced cortical thickness in both NR (pdevelopment in a rodent model with preferential disadvantage to superficial neurons. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  15. Injury of cortical neurons is caused by the advanced glycation end products-mediated pathway

    Ying Xing; Xu Zhang; Xiangfu Song; Zhongwen Lv; Lingling Hou; Fei Li


    Advanced glycation end products lead to cell apoptosis, and cause cell death by increasing endoplasmic reticulum stress. Advanced glycation end products alone may also directly cause damage to tissues and cells, but the precise mechanism remains unknown. This study used primary cultures of rat cerebral cortex neurons, and treated cells with different concentrations of glycation end products (50, 100, 200, 400 mg/L), and with an antibody for the receptor of advanced glycation end products before and after treatment with advanced glycation end products. The results showed that with increasing concentrations of glycation end products, free radical content increased in neurons, and the number of apoptotic cells increased in a dose-dependent manner. Before and after treatment of advanced glycation end products, the addition of the antibody against advanced glycation end-products markedly reduced hydroxyl free radicals, malondialdehyde levels, and inhibited cell apoptosis. This result indicated that the antibody for receptor of advanced glycation end-products in neurons from the rat cerebral cortex can reduce glycation end product-induced oxidative stress damage by suppressing glycation end product receptors. Overall, our study confirms that the advanced glycation end products-advanced glycation end products receptor pathway may be the main signaling pathway leading to neuronal damage.

  16. BDNF-modulated spatial organization of Cajal-Retzius and GABAergic neurons in the marginal zone plays a role in the development of cortical organization.

    Alcántara, Soledad; Pozas, Esther; Ibañez, Carlos F; Soriano, Eduardo


    The present study utilizes nestin-BDNF transgenic mice, which offer a model for early increased brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) signalling, to examine the role of BDNF in the development of cortical architecture. Our results demonstrate that the premature and homogeneous expression of BDNF, while preserving tangential migration from the ganglionic eminence to the cortex, impairs the final radial migration of GABAergic neurons, as well as their integration in the appropriate cortical layers. Moreover, Cajal-Retzius (CR) cells and GABAergic neurons segregate in the cortical marginal zone (MZ) in response to BDNF signalling, leading to an alternating pattern and a columnar cortical organization, within which the migration of different neuronal populations is specifically affected. These results suggest that both CR and GABAergic neurons play a role in directing the radial migration of late-generated cortical neurons, and that the spatial distribution of these cells in the MZ is critical for the development of correct cortical organization. In addition, reelin secreted by CR cells in the MZ is not sufficient to direct the migration of late-born neurons to the upper cortical layers, which most likely requires the presence of reelin-secreting interneurons in layers V-VI. We propose that in addition to modulating reelin expression, BDNF regulates the patched distribution of CR and GABAergic neurons in the MZ, and that this spatial distribution is involved in the formation of anatomical and/or functional columns and convoluted structures.

  17. Potentiation of N-methyl-D-aspartate-induced currents by the nootropic drug nefiracetam in rat cortical neurons.

    Moriguchi, Shigeki; Marszalec, William; Zhao, Xilong; Yeh, Jay Z; Narahashi, Toshio


    Nefiracetam is a new pyrrolidone nootropic drug being developed for the treatment of Alzheimer's type and post-stroke vascular-type dementia. In the brain of Alzheimer's disease patients, down-regulation of both cholinergic and glutamatergic systems has been found and is thought to play an important role in impairment of cognition, learning and memory. We have previously shown that the activity of neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors is potently augmented by nefiracetam. The present study was undertaken to elucidate the mechanism of action of nefiracetam on glutamatergic receptors. Currents were recorded from rat cortical neurons in long-term primary culture using the whole-cell patch-clamp technique at a holding potential of -70 mV in Mg2+-free solutions. N-Methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA)-evoked currents were greatly and reversibly potentiated by bath application of nefiracetam resulting in a bell-shaped dose-response curve. The minimum effective nefiracetam concentration was 1 nM, and the maximum potentiation to 170% of the control was produced at 10 nM. Nefiracetam potentiation occurred at high NMDA concentrations that evoked the saturated response, and in a manner independent of NMDA concentrations ranging from 3 to 1,000 microM. Glycine at 3 microM potentiated NMDA currents but this effect was attenuated with an increasing concentration of nefiracetam from 1 to 10,000 nM. 7-Chlorokynurenic acid at 1 microM prevented nefiracetam from potentiating NMDA currents. Nefiracetam at 10 nM shifted the dose-response relationship for the 7-chlorokynurenic acid inhibition of NMDA currents in the direction of higher concentrations. Alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methylisoxazole-4-propionic acid- and kainate-induced currents were not significantly affected by application of 10 nM nefiracetam. It was concluded that nefiracetam potentiated NMDA currents through interactions with the glycine binding site of the NMDA receptor.

  18. Mechanisms of rapid reactive oxygen species generation in response to cytosolic Ca2+ or Zn2+ loads in cortical neurons.

    Aaron Clausen

    Full Text Available Excessive "excitotoxic" accumulation of Ca(2+ and Zn(2+ within neurons contributes to neurodegeneration in pathological conditions including ischemia. Putative early targets of these ions, both of which are linked to increased reactive oxygen species (ROS generation, are mitochondria and the cytosolic enzyme, NADPH oxidase (NOX. The present study uses primary cortical neuronal cultures to examine respective contributions of mitochondria and NOX to ROS generation in response to Ca(2+ or Zn(2+ loading. Induction of rapid cytosolic accumulation of either Ca(2+ (via NMDA exposure or Zn(2+ (via Zn(2+/Pyrithione exposure in 0 Ca(2+ caused sharp cytosolic rises in these ions, as well as a strong and rapid increase in ROS generation. Inhibition of NOX activation significantly reduced the Ca(2+-induced ROS production with little effect on the Zn(2+- triggered ROS generation. Conversely, dissipation of the mitochondrial electrochemical gradient increased the cytosolic Ca(2+ or Zn(2+ rises caused by these exposures, consistent with inhibition of mitochondrial uptake of these ions. However, such disruption of mitochondrial function markedly suppressed the Zn(2+-triggered ROS, while partially attenuating the Ca(2+-triggered ROS. Furthermore, block of the mitochondrial Ca(2+ uniporter (MCU, through which Zn(2+ as well as Ca(2+ can enter the mitochondrial matrix, substantially diminished Zn(2+ triggered ROS production, suggesting that the ROS generation occurs specifically in response to Zn(2+ entry into mitochondria. Finally, in the presence of the sulfhydryl-oxidizing agent 2,2'-dithiodipyridine, which impairs Zn(2+ binding to cytosolic metalloproteins, far lower Zn(2+ exposures were able to induce mitochondrial Zn(2+ uptake and consequent ROS generation. Thus, whereas rapid acute accumulation of Zn(2+ and Ca(2+ each can trigger injurious ROS generation, Zn(2+ entry into mitochondria via the MCU may do so with particular potency. This may be of particular

  19. Cortical inhibition reduces information redundancy at presentation of communication sounds in the primary auditory cortex.

    Gaucher, Quentin; Huetz, Chloé; Gourévitch, Boris; Edeline, Jean-Marc


    In all sensory modalities, intracortical inhibition shapes the functional properties of cortical neurons but also influences the responses to natural stimuli. Studies performed in various species have revealed that auditory cortex neurons respond to conspecific vocalizations by temporal spike patterns displaying a high trial-to-trial reliability, which might result from precise timing between excitation and inhibition. Studying the guinea pig auditory cortex, we show that partial blockage of GABAA receptors by gabazine (GBZ) application (10 μm, a concentration that promotes expansion of cortical receptive fields) increased the evoked firing rate and the spike-timing reliability during presentation of communication sounds (conspecific and heterospecific vocalizations), whereas GABAB receptor antagonists [10 μm saclofen; 10-50 μm CGP55845 (p-3-aminopropyl-p-diethoxymethyl phosphoric acid)] had nonsignificant effects. Computing mutual information (MI) from the responses to vocalizations using either the evoked firing rate or the temporal spike patterns revealed that GBZ application increased the MI derived from the activity of single cortical site but did not change the MI derived from population activity. In addition, quantification of information redundancy showed that GBZ significantly increased redundancy at the population level. This result suggests that a potential role of intracortical inhibition is to reduce information redundancy during the processing of natural stimuli.

  20. Power-law inter-spike interval distributions infer a conditional maximization of entropy in cortical neurons.

    Yasuhiro Tsubo

    Full Text Available The brain is considered to use a relatively small amount of energy for its efficient information processing. Under a severe restriction on the energy consumption, the maximization of mutual information (MMI, which is adequate for designing artificial processing machines, may not suit for the brain. The MMI attempts to send information as accurate as possible and this usually requires a sufficient energy supply for establishing clearly discretized communication bands. Here, we derive an alternative hypothesis for neural code from the neuronal activities recorded juxtacellularly in the sensorimotor cortex of behaving rats. Our hypothesis states that in vivo cortical neurons maximize the entropy of neuronal firing under two constraints, one limiting the energy consumption (as assumed previously and one restricting the uncertainty in output spike sequences at given firing rate. Thus, the conditional maximization of firing-rate entropy (CMFE solves a tradeoff between the energy cost and noise in neuronal response. In short, the CMFE sends a rich variety of information through broader communication bands (i.e., widely distributed firing rates at the cost of accuracy. We demonstrate that the CMFE is reflected in the long-tailed, typically power law, distributions of inter-spike intervals obtained for the majority of recorded neurons. In other words, the power-law tails are more consistent with the CMFE rather than the MMI. Thus, we propose the mathematical principle by which cortical neurons may represent information about synaptic input into their output spike trains.

  1. Faithful SGCE imprinting in iPSC-derived cortical neurons: an endogenous cellular model of myoclonus-dystonia

    Grütz, Karen; Seibler, Philip; Weissbach, Anne; Lohmann, Katja; Carlisle, Francesca A.; Blake, Derek J.; Westenberger, Ana; Klein, Christine; Grünewald, Anne


    In neuropathology research, induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-derived neurons are considered a tool closely resembling the patient brain. Albeit in respect to epigenetics, this concept has been challenged. We generated iPSC-derived cortical neurons from myoclonus-dystonia patients with mutations (W100G and R102X) in the maternally imprinted ε-sarcoglycan (SGCE) gene and analysed properties such as imprinting, mRNA and protein expression. Comparison of the promoter during reprogramming and differentiation showed tissue-independent differential methylation. DNA sequencing with methylation-specific primers and cDNA analysis in patient neurons indicated selective expression of the mutated paternal SGCE allele. While fibroblasts only expressed the ubiquitous mRNA isoform, brain-specific SGCE mRNA and ε-sarcoglycan protein were detected in iPSC-derived control neurons. However, neuronal protein levels were reduced in both mutants. Our phenotypic characterization highlights the suitability of iPSC-derived cortical neurons with SGCE mutations for myoclonus-dystonia research and, in more general terms, prompts the use of iPSC-derived cellular models to study epigenetic mechanisms impacting on health and disease. PMID:28155872

  2. Characterizing HSF1 Binding and Post-Translational Modifications of hsp70 Promoter in Cultured Cortical Neurons: Implications in the Heat-Shock Response.

    Andrea V Gómez

    Full Text Available Causes of lower induction of Hsp70 in neurons during heat shock are still a matter of debate. To further inquire into the mechanisms regulating Hsp70 expression in neurons, we studied the activity of Heat Shock Factor 1 (HSF1 and histone posttranslational modifications (PTMs at the hsp70 promoter in rat cortical neurons. Heat shock induced a transient and efficient translocation of HSF1 to neuronal nuclei. However, no binding of HSF1 at the hsp70 promoter was detected while it bound to the hsp25 promoter in cortical neurons during heat shock. Histone PTMs analysis showed that the hsp70 promoter harbors lower levels of histone H3 and H4 acetylation in cortical neurons compared to PC12 cells under basal conditions. Transcriptomic profiling data analysis showed a predominant usage of cryptic transcriptional start sites at hsp70 gene in the rat cerebral cortex, compared with the whole brain. These data support a weaker activation of hsp70 canonical promoter. Heat shock increased H3Ac at the hsp70 promoter in PC12 cells, which correlated with increased Hsp70 expression while no modifications occurred at the hsp70 promoter in cortical neurons. Increased histone H3 acetylation by Trichostatin A led to hsp70 mRNA and protein induction in cortical neurons. In conclusion, we found that two independent mechanisms maintain a lower induction of Hsp70 in cortical neurons. First, HSF1 fails to bind specifically to the hsp70 promoter in cortical neurons during heat shock and, second, the hsp70 promoter is less accessible in neurons compared to non-neuronal cells due to histone deacetylases repression.

  3. Analysis of BH3-only proteins upregulated in response to oxygen/glucose deprivation in cortical neurons identifies Bmf but not Noxa as potential mediator of neuronal injury.

    Pfeiffer, S; Anilkumar, U; Chen, G; Ramírez-Peinado, S; Galindo-Moreno, J; Muñoz-Pinedo, C; Prehn, J H M


    Stress signaling in response to oxygen/glucose deprivation (OGD) and ischemic injury activates a group of pro-apoptotic genes, the Bcl-2 homology domain 3 (BH3)-only proteins, which are capable of activating the mitochondrial apoptosis pathway. Targeted studies previously identified the BH3-only proteins Puma, Bim and Bid to have a role in ischemic/hypoxic neuronal injury. We here investigated the transcriptional activation of pro-apoptotic BH3-only proteins after OGD-induced injury in murine neocortical neurons. We observed a potent and early upregulation of noxa at mRNA and protein level, and a significant increase in Bmf protein levels during OGD in neocortical neurons and in the ipsilateral cortex of mice subjected to transient middle cerebral artery occlusion (tMCAO). Surprisingly, gene deficiency in noxa reduced neither OGD- nor glutamate-induced neuronal injury in cortical neurons and failed to influence infarct size or neurological deficits after tMCAO. In contrast, bmf deficiency induced significant protection against OGD- or glutamate-induced injury in cultured neurons, and bmf-deficient mice showed reduced neurological deficits after tMCAO in vivo. Collectively, our data not only point to a role of Bmf as a BH3-only protein contributing to excitotoxic and ischemic neuronal injury but also demonstrate that the early and potent induction of noxa does not influence ischemic neuronal injury.

  4. Control of hair cell excitability by vestibular primary sensory neurons.

    Brugeaud, Aurore; Travo, Cécile; Demêmes, Danielle; Lenoir, Marc; Llorens, Jordi; Puel, Jean-Luc; Chabbert, Christian


    International audience; In the rat utricle, synaptic contacts between hair cells and the nerve fibers arising from the vestibular primary neurons form during the first week after birth. During that period, the sodium-based excitability that characterizes neonate utricle sensory cells is switched off. To investigate whether the establishment of synaptic contacts was responsible for the modulation of the hair cell excitability, we used an organotypic culture of rat utricle in which the setting ...

  5. Protective effects of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor antagonism on VX-induced neuronal cell death in cultured rat cortical neurons.

    Wang, Yushan; Weiss, M Tracy; Yin, Junfei; Tenn, Catherine C; Nelson, Peggy D; Mikler, John R


    Exposure of the central nervous system to organophosphorus (OP) nerve agents induces seizures and neuronal cell death. Here we report that the OP nerve agent, VX, induces apoptotic-like cell death in cultured rat cortical neurons. The VX effects on neurons were concentration-dependent, with an IC(50) of approximately 30 microM. Blockade of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors (NMDAR) with 50 microM. D-2-amino-5-phosphonovalerate (APV) diminished 30 microM VX-induced total cell death, as assessed by alamarBlue assay and Hoechst staining. In contrast, neither antagonists of alpha-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methylisoxazole-4-propionic acid receptors (AMPARs) nor metabotropic glutamate receptors (mGluRs) had any effect on VX-induced neurotoxicity. VX-induced neuronal cell death could not be solely attributed to acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibition, since neither the reversible pharmacological cholinesterase inhibitor, physostigmine, nor the muscarinic receptor antagonist, atropine, affected VX-induced cell death. Importantly, APV was found to be therapeutically effective against VX-induced cell death up to 2 h post VX exposure. These results suggest that NMDARs, but not AMPARs or mGluRs, play important roles in VX-induced cell death in cultured rat cortical neurons. Based on their therapeutic effects, NMDAR antagonists may be beneficial in the treatment of VX-induced neurotoxicities.

  6. A structured model of video reproduces primary visual cortical organisation.

    Pietro Berkes


    Full Text Available The visual system must learn to infer the presence of objects and features in the world from the images it encounters, and as such it must, either implicitly or explicitly, model the way these elements interact to create the image. Do the response properties of cells in the mammalian visual system reflect this constraint? To address this question, we constructed a probabilistic model in which the identity and attributes of simple visual elements were represented explicitly and learnt the parameters of this model from unparsed, natural video sequences. After learning, the behaviour and grouping of variables in the probabilistic model corresponded closely to functional and anatomical properties of simple and complex cells in the primary visual cortex (V1. In particular, feature identity variables were activated in a way that resembled the activity of complex cells, while feature attribute variables responded much like simple cells. Furthermore, the grouping of the attributes within the model closely parallelled the reported anatomical grouping of simple cells in cat V1. Thus, this generative model makes explicit an interpretation of complex and simple cells as elements in the segmentation of a visual scene into basic independent features, along with a parametrisation of their moment-by-moment appearances. We speculate that such a segmentation may form the initial stage of a hierarchical system that progressively separates the identity and appearance of more articulated visual elements, culminating in view-invariant object recognition.

  7. Neuronal and microglial regulators of cortical wiring: usual and novel guideposts

    Paola eSquarzoni


    Full Text Available Neocortex functioning relies on the formation of complex networks that begins to be assembled during embryogenesis by highly stereotyped processes of cell migration and axonal navigation. The guidance of cells and axons is driven by extracellular cues, released along by final targets or intermediate targets located along specific pathways. In particular, guidepost cells, originally described in the grasshopper, are considered discrete, specialized cell populations located at crucial decision points along axonal trajectories that regulate tract formation. These cells are usually early-born, transient and act at short-range or via cell-cell contact. The vast majority of guidepost cells initially identified were glial cells, which play a role in the formation of important axonal tracts in the forebrain, such as the corpus callosum, anterior and post-optic commissures as well as optic chiasm. In the last decades, tangential migrating neurons have also been found to participate in the guidance of principal axonal tracts in the forebrain. This is the case for several examples such as guideposts for the lateral olfactory tract (LOT, corridor cells, which open an internal path for thalamo-cortical axons and Cajal-Retzius cells that have been involved in the formation of the entorhino-hippocampal connections. More recently, microglia, the resident macrophages of the brain, were specifically observed at the crossroads of important neuronal migratory routes and axonal tract pathways during forebrain development. We furthermore found that microglia participate to the shaping of prenatal forebrain circuits, thereby opening novel perspectives on forebrain development and wiring. Here we will review the last findings on already known guidepost cells populations and will discuss the role of microglia as a potentially new class of atypical guidepost cells.

  8. PSD-95 uncoupling from NMDA receptors by Tat- N-dimer ameliorates neuronal depolarization in cortical spreading depression.

    Kucharz, Krzysztof; Søndergaard Rasmussen, Ida; Bach, Anders; Strømgaard, Kristian; Lauritzen, Martin


    Cortical spreading depression is associated with activation of NMDA receptors, which interact with the postsynaptic density protein 95 (PSD-95) that binds to nitric oxide synthase (nNOS). Here, we tested whether inhibition of the nNOS/PSD-95/NMDA receptor complex formation by anti-ischemic compound, UCCB01-144 (Tat- N-dimer) ameliorates the persistent effects of cortical spreading depression on cortical function. Using in vivo two-photon microscopy in somatosensory cortex in mice, we show that fluorescently labelled Tat- N-dimer readily crosses blood-brain barrier and accumulates in nerve cells during the first hour after i.v. injection. The Tat- N-dimer suppressed stimulation-evoked synaptic activity by 2-20%, while cortical blood flow and cerebral oxygen metabolic (CMRO2) responses were preserved. During cortical spreading depression, the Tat- N-dimer reduced the average amplitude of the negative shift in direct current potential by 33% (4.1 mV). Furthermore, the compound diminished the average depression of spontaneous electrocorticographic activity by 11% during first 40 min of post-cortical spreading depression recovery, but did not mitigate the suppressing effect of cortical spreading depression on cortical blood flow and CMRO2. We suggest that uncoupling of PSD-95 from NMDA receptors reduces overall neuronal excitability and the amplitude of the spreading depolarization wave. These findings may be of interest for understanding the neuroprotective effects of the nNOS/PSD-95 uncoupling in stroke.

  9. Isolation and Proteomic Analysis of Microvesicles and Exosomes from HT22 Cells and Primary Neurons.

    Witas, Richard; Chaput, Dale; Khan, Hirah; Stevens, Stanley M; Kang, David


    Exosomes and microvesicles are extracellular vesicles (EVs) released by most cell types. The role of EVs as a method of intercellular communication has led to these vesicles becoming a major area of interest in a variety of scientific fields including neuroscience. Emerging evidence is now demonstrating that the biomolecular composition of EVs, especially exosomes, can play a role in the progression of disease including various neurodegenerative diseases and cancer. In addition to the miRNA profiles of EVs, these vesicles also show interesting changes in protein expression profiles under different physiological and pathological conditions. Characterization of these profiles could prove valuable for both understanding disease pathogenesis and for the discovery of new biomarkers of disease. In this chapter, we describe a protocol for isolation of exosomes and microvesicles from immortalized HT22 cells and primary cortical neurons with sufficient yield and low serum contamination required for downstream analysis and label-free relative quantitation by mass spectrometry.

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

    Lecrux, C; Hamel, E


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

  11. Cortical Motor Organization, Mirror Neurons, and Embodied Language: An Evolutionary Perspective

    Leonardo Fogassi


    Full Text Available The recent conceptual achievement that the cortical motor system plays a crucial role not only in motor control but also in higher cognitive functions has given a new perspective also on the involvement of motor cortex in language perception and production. In particular, there is evidence that the matching mechanism based on mirror neurons can be involved in both pho-nological recognition and retrieval of meaning, especially for action word categories, thus suggesting a contribution of an action–perception mechanism to the automatic comprehension of semantics. Furthermore, a compari-son of the anatomo-functional properties of the frontal motor cortex among different primates and their communicative modalities indicates that the combination of the voluntary control of the gestural communication systems and of the vocal apparatus has been the critical factor in the transition from a gestural-based communication into a predominantly speech-based system. Finally, considering that the monkey and human premotor-parietal motor system, plus the prefrontal cortex, are involved in the sequential motor organization of actions and in the hierarchical combination of motor elements, we propose that elements of such motor organization have been exploited in other domains, including some aspects of the syntactic structure of language.

  12. Salubrinal inhibits the expression of proteoglycans and favors neurite outgrowth from cortical neurons in vitro.

    Barreda-Manso, M Asunción; Yanguas-Casás, Natalia; Nieto-Sampedro, Manuel; Romero-Ramírez, Lorenzo


    After CNS injury, astrocytes and mesenchymal cells attempt to restore the disrupted glia limitans by secreting proteoglycans and extracellular matrix proteins (ECMs), forming the so-called glial scar. Although the glial scar is important in sealing the lesion, it is also a physical and functional barrier that prevents axonal regeneration. The synthesis of secretory proteins in the RER is under the control of the initiation factor of translation eIF2α. Inhibiting the synthesis of secretory proteins by increasing the phosphorylation of eIF2α, might be a pharmacologically efficient way of reducing proteoglycans and other profibrotic proteins present in the glial scar. Salubrinal, a neuroprotective drug, decreased the expression and secretion of proteoglycans and other profibrotic proteins induced by EGF or TGFβ, maintaining eIF2α phosphorylated. Besides, Salubrinal also reduced the transcription of proteoglycans and other profibrotic proteins, suggesting that it induced the degradation of non-translated mRNA. In a model in vitro of the glial scar, cortical neurons grown on cocultures of astrocytes and fibroblasts with TGFβ treated with Salubrinal, showed increased neurite outgrowth compared to untreated cells. Our results suggest that Salubrinal may be considered of therapeutic value facilitating axonal regeneration, by reducing overproduction and secretion of proteoglycans and profibrotic protein inhibitors of axonal growth.

  13. Efficient derivation of cortical glutamatergic neurons from human pluripotent stem cells: a model system to study neurotoxicity in Alzheimer's disease.

    Vazin, Tandis; Ball, K Aurelia; Lu, Hui; Park, Hyungju; Ataeijannati, Yasaman; Head-Gordon, Teresa; Poo, Mu-ming; Schaffer, David V


    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is among the most prevalent forms of dementia affecting the aging population, and pharmacological therapies to date have not been successful in preventing disease progression. Future therapeutic efforts may benefit from the development of models that enable basic investigation of early disease pathology. In particular, disease-relevant models based on human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) may be promising approaches to assess the impact of neurotoxic agents in AD on specific neuronal populations and thereby facilitate the development of novel interventions to avert early disease mechanisms. We implemented an efficient paradigm to convert hPSCs into enriched populations of cortical glutamatergic neurons emerging from dorsal forebrain neural progenitors, aided by modulating Sonic hedgehog (Shh) signaling. Since AD is generally known to be toxic to glutamatergic circuits, we exposed glutamatergic neurons derived from hESCs to an oligomeric pre-fibrillar forms of Aβ known as "globulomers", which have shown strong correlation with the level of cognitive deficits in AD. Administration of such Aβ oligomers yielded signs of the disease, including cell culture age-dependent binding of Aβ and cell death in the glutamatergic populations. Furthermore, consistent with previous findings in postmortem human AD brain, Aβ-induced toxicity was selective for glutamatergic rather than GABAeric neurons present in our cultures. This in vitro model of cortical glutamatergic neurons thus offers a system for future mechanistic investigation and therapeutic development for AD pathology using human cell types specifically affected by this disease. © 2013.

  14. Interhemispheric Connections between the Primary Visual Cortical Areas via the Anterior Commissure in Human Callosal Agenesis.

    van Meer, Nathalie; Houtman, Anne C; Van Schuerbeek, Peter; Vanderhasselt, Tim; Milleret, Chantal; Ten Tusscher, Marcel P


    Aim: In humans, images in the median plane of the head either fall on both nasal hemi-retinas or on both temporal hemi-retinas. Interhemispheric connections allow cortical cells to have receptive fields on opposite sides. The major interhemispheric connection, the corpus callosum, is implicated in central stereopsis and disparity detection in front of the fixation plane. Yet individuals with agenesis of the corpus callosum may show normal stereopsis and disparity vergence. We set out to study a possible interhemispheric connection between primary visual cortical areas via the anterior commissure to explain this inconsistency because of the major role of these cortical areas in elaborating 3D visual perception. Methods: MRI, DTI and tractography of the brain of a 53-year old man with complete callosal agenesis and normal binocular single vision was undertaken. Tractography seed points were placed in both the right and the left V1 and V2. Nine individuals with both an intact corpus callosum and normal binocularity served as controls. Results: Interhemispheric tracts through the anterior commissure linking both V1 and V2 visual cortical areas bilaterally were indeed shown in the subject with callosal agenesis. All other individuals showed interhemispheric visual connections through the corpus callosum only. Conclusion: Callosal agenesis may result in anomalous interhemispheric connections of the primary visual areas via the anterior commissure. It is proposed here that these connections form as alternative to the normal callosal pathway and may participate in binocularity.

  15. Cortical and thalamic contributions to response dynamics across layers of the primary somatosensory cortex during tactile discrimination.

    Pais-Vieira, Miguel; Kunicki, Carolina; Tseng, Po-He; Martin, Joel; Lebedev, Mikhail; Nicolelis, Miguel A L


    Tactile information processing in the rodent primary somatosensory cortex (S1) is layer specific and involves modulations from both thalamocortical and cortico-cortical loops. However, the extent to which these loops influence the dynamics of the primary somatosensory cortex while animals execute tactile discrimination remains largely unknown. Here, we describe neural dynamics of S1 layers across the multiple epochs defining a tactile discrimination task. We observed that neuronal ensembles within different layers of the S1 cortex exhibited significantly distinct neurophysiological properties, which constantly changed across the behavioral states that defined a tactile discrimination. Neural dynamics present in supragranular and granular layers generally matched the patterns observed in the ventral posterior medial nucleus of the thalamus (VPM), whereas the neural dynamics recorded from infragranular layers generally matched the patterns from the posterior nucleus of the thalamus (POM). Selective inactivation of contralateral S1 specifically switched infragranular neural dynamics from POM-like to those resembling VPM neurons. Meanwhile, ipsilateral M1 inactivation profoundly modulated the firing suppression observed in infragranular layers. This latter effect was counterbalanced by contralateral S1 block. Tactile stimulus encoding was layer specific and selectively affected by M1 or contralateral S1 inactivation. Lastly, causal information transfer occurred between all neurons in all S1 layers but was maximal from infragranular to the granular layer. These results suggest that tactile information processing in the S1 of awake behaving rodents is layer specific and state dependent and that its dynamics depend on the asynchronous convergence of modulations originating from ipsilateral M1 and contralateral S1.

  16. Neuronal injury marker ATF-3 is induced in primary afferent neurons of monoarthritic rats.

    Nascimento, Diana; Pozza, Daniel Humberto; Castro-Lopes, José Manuel; Neto, Fani Lourença


    Activating transcription factor 3 (ATF-3) expression has been associated with several signaling pathways implicated in cellular stress response in many cell types and is usually regarded as a neuronal damage marker in dorsal root ganglia (DRG). We investigated ATF-3 expression in primary afferents in the monoarthritic (MA) model of chronic inflammatory joint pain. Immunohistochemistry revealed that ATF-3 is highly induced mainly in small and medium neurons, especially at 2 and 4 days of MA in L(5) DRGs. Colocalization with calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) and isolectin B4 (IB4) demonstrated that ATF-3-immunoreactive cells are mainly peptidergic. The lack of significant differences in ATF-3 and pAkt colocalization indicated that ATF-3 is probably not involved in a pAkt-mediated survival pathway. Anti-inflammatory (ketoprofen) administration failed to reverse ATF-3 induction in MA rats, but significantly increased CGRP expression. These data suggest that ATF-3 expression is definitely involved in MA, actually marking injured neurons. Some degree of neuronal damage seems to occur right from the first days of disease, mainly affecting small-to-medium peptidergic neurons. The intra-articular injection of complete Freund's adjuvant and the generation of a neuroinflammatory environment seem to be the plausible explanation for the local nerve damage. Copyright © 2011 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  17. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor enhances the basal rate of protein synthesis by increasing active eukaryotic elongation factor 2 levels and promoting translation elongation in cortical neurons.

    Takei, Nobuyuki; Kawamura, Mihoko; Ishizuka, Yuta; Kakiya, Naomasa; Inamura, Naoko; Namba, Hisaaki; Nawa, Hiroyuki


    The constitutive and activity-dependent components of protein synthesis are both critical for neural function. Although the mechanisms controlling extracellularly induced protein synthesis are becoming clear, less is understood about the molecular networks that regulate the basal translation rate. Here we describe the effects of chronic treatment with various neurotrophic factors and cytokines on the basal rate of protein synthesis in primary cortical neurons. Among the examined factors, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) showed the strongest effect. The rate of protein synthesis increased in the cortical tissues of BDNF transgenic mice, whereas it decreased in BDNF knock-out mice. BDNF specifically increased the level of the active, unphosphorylated form of eukaryotic elongation factor 2 (eEF2). The levels of active eEF2 increased and decreased in BDNF transgenic and BDNF knock-out mice, respectively. BDNF decreased kinase activity and increased phosphatase activity against eEF2 in vitro. Additionally, BDNF shortened the ribosomal transit time, an index of translation elongation. In agreement with these results, overexpression of eEF2 enhanced protein synthesis. Taken together, our results demonstrate that the increased level of active eEF2 induced by chronic BDNF stimulation enhances translational elongation processes and increases the total rate of protein synthesis in neurons.

  18. Adenosine A2B receptor-mediated leukemia inhibitory factor release from astrocytes protects cortical neurons against excitotoxicity

    Moidunny Shamsudheen


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Neuroprotective and neurotrophic properties of leukemia inhibitory factor (LIF have been widely reported. In the central nervous system (CNS, astrocytes are the major source for LIF, expression of which is enhanced following disturbances leading to neuronal damage. How astrocytic LIF expression is regulated, however, has remained an unanswered question. Since neuronal stress is associated with production of extracellular adenosine, we investigated whether LIF expression in astrocytes was mediated through adenosine receptor signaling. Methods Mouse cortical neuronal and astrocyte cultures from wild-type and adenosine A2B receptor knock-out animals, as well as adenosine receptor agonists/antagonists and various enzymatic inhibitors, were used to study LIF expression and release in astrocytes. When needed, a one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA followed by Bonferroni post-hoc test was used for statistical analysis. Results We show here that glutamate-stressed cortical neurons induce LIF expression through activation of adenosine A2B receptor subtype in cultured astrocytes and require signaling of protein kinase C (PKC, mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs: p38 and ERK1/2, and the nuclear transcription factor (NF-κB. Moreover, LIF concentration in the supernatant in response to 5′-N-ethylcarboxamide (NECA stimulation was directly correlated to de novo protein synthesis, suggesting that LIF release did not occur through a regulated release pathway. Immunocytochemistry experiments show that LIF-containing vesicles co-localize with clathrin and Rab11, but not with pHogrin, Chromogranin (CgA and CgB, suggesting that LIF might be secreted through recycling endosomes. We further show that pre-treatment with supernatants from NECA-treated astrocytes increased survival of cultured cortical neurons against glutamate, which was absent when the supernatants were pre-treated with an anti-LIF neutralizing antibody. Conclusions

  19. Differential expression of K4-AP currents and Kv3.1 potassium channel transcripts in cortical neurons that develop distinct firing phenotypes.

    Massengill, Jennifer L; Smith, Martin A.; Son, Dong Ik; O'Dowd, Diane K.


    Maturation of electrical excitability during early postnatal development is critical to formation of functional neural circuitry in the mammalian neocortex. Little is known, however, about the changes in gene expression underlying the development of firing properties that characterize different classes of cortical neurons. Here we describe the development of cortical neurons with two distinct firing phenotypes, regular-spiking (RS) and fast-spiking (FS), that appear to emerge from a populatio...

  20. 14,15-EET promotes mitochondrial biogenesis and protects cortical neurons against oxygen/glucose deprivation-induced apoptosis.

    Wang, Lai; Chen, Man; Yuan, Lin; Xiang, Yuting; Zheng, Ruimao; Zhu, Shigong


    14,15-Epoxyeicosatrienoic acid (14,15-EET), a metabolite of arachidonic acid, is enriched in the brain cortex and exerts protective effect against neuronal apoptosis induced by ischemia/reperfusion. Although apoptosis has been well recognized to be closely associated with mitochondrial biogenesis and function, it is still unclear whether the neuroprotective effect of 14,15-EET is mediated by promotion of mitochondrial biogenesis and function in cortical neurons under the condition of oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD). In this study, we found that 14,15-EET improved cell viability and inhibited apoptosis of cortical neurons. 14,15-EET significantly increased the mitochondrial mass and the ratio of mitochondrial DNA to nuclear DNA. Key makers of mitochondrial biogenesis, peroxisome proliferator activator receptor gamma-coactivator 1 alpha (PGC-1α), nuclear respiratory factor 1 (NRF-1) and mitochondrial transcription factor A (TFAM), were elevated at both mRNA and protein levels in the cortical neurons treated with 14,15-EET. Moreover, 14,15-EET markedly attenuated the decline of mitochondrial membrane potential, reduced ROS, while increased ATP synthesis. Knockdown of cAMP-response element binding protein (CREB) by siRNA blunted the up-regulation of PGC-1α and NRF-1 stimulated by 14,15-EET, and consequently abolished the neuroprotective effect of 14,15-EET. Our results indicate that 14,15-EET protects neurons from OGD-induced apoptosis by promoting mitochondrial biogenesis and function through CREB mediated activation of PGC-1α and NRF-1.

  1. Joint cross-correlation analysis reveals complex, time-dependent functional relationship between cortical neurons and arm electromyograms

    Zhuang, Katie Z.; Lebedev, Mikhail A.


    Correlation between cortical activity and electromyographic (EMG) activity of limb muscles has long been a subject of neurophysiological studies, especially in terms of corticospinal connectivity. Interest in this issue has recently increased due to the development of brain-machine interfaces with output signals that mimic muscle force. For this study, three monkeys were implanted with multielectrode arrays in multiple cortical areas. One monkey performed self-timed touch pad presses, whereas the other two executed arm reaching movements. We analyzed the dynamic relationship between cortical neuronal activity and arm EMGs using a joint cross-correlation (JCC) analysis that evaluated trial-by-trial correlation as a function of time intervals within a trial. JCCs revealed transient correlations between the EMGs of multiple muscles and neural activity in motor, premotor and somatosensory cortical areas. Matching results were obtained using spike-triggered averages corrected by subtracting trial-shuffled data. Compared with spike-triggered averages, JCCs more readily revealed dynamic changes in cortico-EMG correlations. JCCs showed that correlation peaks often sharpened around movement times and broadened during delay intervals. Furthermore, JCC patterns were directionally selective for the arm-reaching task. We propose that such highly dynamic, task-dependent and distributed relationships between cortical activity and EMGs should be taken into consideration for future brain-machine interfaces that generate EMG-like signals. PMID:25210153

  2. Neuronal deletion of caspase 8 protects against brain injury in mouse models of controlled cortical impact and kainic acid-induced excitotoxicity.

    Maryla Krajewska

    Full Text Available Acute brain injury is an important health problem. Given the critical position of caspase 8 at the crossroads of cell death pathways, we generated a new viable mouse line (Ncasp8(-/-, in which the gene encoding caspase 8 was selectively deleted in neurons by cre-lox system.Caspase 8 deletion reduced rates of neuronal cell death in primary neuronal cultures and in whole brain organotypic coronal slice cultures prepared from 4 and 8 month old mice and cultivated up to 14 days in vitro. Treatments of cultures with recombinant murine TNFα (100 ng/ml or TRAIL (250 ng/mL plus cyclohexamide significantly protected neurons against cell death induced by these apoptosis-inducing ligands. A protective role of caspase 8 deletion in vivo was also demonstrated using a controlled cortical impact (CCI model of traumatic brain injury (TBI and seizure-induced brain injury caused by kainic acid (KA. Morphometric analyses were performed using digital imaging in conjunction with image analysis algorithms. By employing virtual images of hundreds of brain sections, we were able to perform quantitative morphometry of histological and immunohistochemical staining data in an unbiased manner. In the TBI model, homozygous deletion of caspase 8 resulted in reduced lesion volumes, improved post-injury motor performance, superior learning and memory retention, decreased apoptosis, diminished proteolytic processing of caspases and caspase substrates, and less neuronal degeneration, compared to wild type, homozygous cre, and caspase 8-floxed control mice. In the KA model, Ncasp8(-/- mice demonstrated superior survival, reduced seizure severity, less apoptosis, and reduced caspase 3 processing. Uninjured aged knockout mice showed improved learning and memory, implicating a possible role for caspase 8 in cognitive decline with aging.Neuron-specific deletion of caspase 8 reduces brain damage and improves post-traumatic functional outcomes, suggesting an important role for this

  3. Abnormal maturation and differentiation of neocortical neurons in epileptogenic cortical malformation: unique distribution of layer-specific marker cells of focal cortical dysplasia and hemimegalencephaly.

    Arai, Asako; Saito, Takashi; Hanai, Sae; Sukigara, Sayuri; Nabatame, Shin; Otsuki, Taisuke; Nakagawa, Eiji; Takahashi, Akio; Kaneko, Yuu; Kaido, Takanobu; Saito, Yuko; Sugai, Kenji; Sasaki, Masayuki; Goto, Yu-Ichi; Itoh, Masayuki


    Focal cortical dysplasia (FCD) and hemimegalencephaly (HME) are major causes of intractable epilepsy in children. The probable pathogenesis of FCD and HMG is the abnormal migration and differentiation of neurons. The aim of the present study was to clarify the abnormal cytoarchitecture, based on neuronal immaturation. Tissue samples were obtained from 16 FCD and seven HME patients, aged between 2 months and 12 years, who had been diagnosed as typical FCD and HME, following surgical treatment for intractable epilepsy. Paraffin-embedded sections were stained with the antibodies of three layer-markers that are usually present only during the fetal period, namely SATB2 (expressed in the upper layer of the normal fetal neocortex), FOXP1 (expressed in the 5th layer), and TBR1 (expressed in the 6th layer). In FCD, SATB2-positive (+) cells located in the middle and deep regions of FCD Ia and Ib, but only in the superficial region of FCD IIa and IIb. FOXP1+ cells diffusely located in the neocortex, especially the upper layer of FCD IIa and IIb. TBR1+ cells mainly located in the middle and deep regions, and also white matter. In FCD IIb, TBR1+ cells were in the superficial region. In HME, SATB2+ and FOXP1+ cells were found diffusely. TBR1+ cells were in the middle and deep regions. On the basis of continued expression of fetal cortical layer-specific markers in FCD and HME brains, the abnormal neocortical formation in both is likely to be the result of disrupted neuronal migration and dysmaturation. The expression pattern is different between FCD and HME. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Phosphorylation of CRMP2 by Cdk5 Regulates Dendritic Spine Development of Cortical Neuron in the Mouse Hippocampus

    Xiaohua Jin


    Full Text Available Proper density and morphology of dendritic spines are important for higher brain functions such as learning and memory. However, our knowledge about molecular mechanisms that regulate the development and maintenance of dendritic spines is limited. We recently reported that cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5 is required for the development and maintenance of dendritic spines of cortical neurons in the mouse brain. Previous in vitro studies have suggested the involvement of Cdk5 substrates in the formation of dendritic spines; however, their role in spine development has not been tested in vivo. Here, we demonstrate that Cdk5 phosphorylates collapsin response mediator protein 2 (CRMP2 in the dendritic spines of cultured hippocampal neurons and in vivo in the mouse brain. When we eliminated CRMP2 phosphorylation in CRMP2KI/KI mice, the densities of dendritic spines significantly decreased in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons in the mouse brain. These results indicate that phosphorylation of CRMP2 by Cdk5 is important for dendritic spine development in cortical neurons in the mouse hippocampus.

  5. Neuronal stimulation of (3H)thymidine incorporation by primary cultures of highly purified non-neuronal cells.

    McCarthy, K D; Partlow, L M


    A specific intercellular interaction has been demonstrated between neuronal and non-neuronal cells that appears to increase the rate of non-neuronal cell proliferation. Isolated and recombined primary cultures of both cell types were prepared from 11-day embryonic chick sympathetic ganglia by a method recently developed in this laboratory. When non-dividing neurons were added to an equal number of proliferating non-neuronal cells, the amount of [methyl-3H]thymidine incorporated by these mixed cultures was 230% greater than that incorporated by 99% pure non-neuronal cultures. Removal of all neurons from such non-neuronal cultures by a 48-h preincubation without nerve growth factor resulted in an even greater increase in [3H]thymidine incorporation upon addition of neurons (370%). When increasing numbers of isolated neurons were added to non-neuronal cell cultures, the amount of [3H]thymidine incorporation initially increased in a dose-dependent fashion until it reached a plateau. In contrast, the addition of increasing numbers of non-neuronal cells to a constant number of neurons resulted in a linear increase in [3H]thymidine incorporation. In some cases neurons and non-neuronal cells were not grown in direct physical contact but were only allowed to communicate with one another through the culture medium. Such indirect communication never resulted in a stimulation of [3H]thymidine incorporation. When neurons were added to cultures of embryonic chick fibroblasts, the neurons grew well but did not stimulate [3H]thymidine incorporation by the fibroblasts. These results suggest that embryonic sympathetic neurons selectively stimulate the proliferation of non-neuronal cells derived from the same source.

  6. The Edible Red Alga Porphyra yezoensis Promotes Neuronal Survival and Cytoarchitecture in Primary Hippocampal Neurons.

    Mohibbullah, Md; Bhuiyan, Mohammad Maqueshudul Haque; Hannan, Md Abdul; Getachew, Paulos; Hong, Yong-Ki; Choi, Jae-Suk; Choi, In Soon; Moon, Il Soo


    The edible red alga Porphyra yezoensis is among the most popular marine algae and is of economic and medicinal importance. In the present study, the neurotrophic and neuroprotective activities of the ethanol extract of P. yezoensis (PYE) were investigated in primary cultures of hippocampal neurons. Results revealed that PYE significantly increased neurite outgrowth at an optimal concentration of 15 µg/mL. PYE dose-dependently increased viable cells, significantly accelerated the rate of neuronal differentiation in cultures, promoted axodendritic arborization, and eventually induced synaptogenesis. In addition to morphological development, PYE also promoted functional maturation as indicated by the staining of live cultures with FM 1-43. Moreover, PYE increased neuronal survivability, which was attributed to reduced apoptosis and its ROS scavenging activity. Taurine, a major organic acid in PYE (2.584/100 mg of dry PYE) promoted neurite outgrowth in a dose-dependent manner, and this promotion was suppressed by the taurine antagonist isethionic acid. The study indicates that PYE and its active component, taurine, facilitate neuronal development and maturation and have a neuroprotective effect.

  7. Pharmacological characterization of the native store-operated calcium channels of cortical neuronal from embryonic mouse brain

    Sylvain Chauvet


    Full Text Available In the murine brain, the first post-mitotic cortical neurons formed during embryogenesis express store-operated channels (SOCs sensitive to Pyr3, initially proposed as a blocker of transient receptor potential channel of C type 3 (TRPC3 channel. However Pyr3 does not discriminate between Orai and TRPC3 channels, questioning the contribution of TRPC3 in SOCs. This study was undertaken to precise the molecular identity and the pharmacological profile of native SOCs from E13 cortical neurons. The mRNA expression of STIM1-2, Orai1-3 was assessed by quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR. E13 cortical neurons expressed STIM1-2 mRNAs, with STIM2 being the predominant isoform. Only transcripts of Orai2 were found but no Orai1 and Orai3 mRNAs. Blockers of Orai and TRPC channels (Pyr6, Pyr10, EVP4593, SAR7334, GSK-7975A were used to further characterize the endogenous SOCs. Their activity was recorded using the fluorescent Ca2+ probe Fluo-4. Cortical SOCs were sensitive to the Orai blockers Pyr6, GSK-7975A, and also to EVP4593, zinc, copper and gadolinium ions, the latter one being the most potent SOCs blocker tested (IC50 ~10 nM. SOCs were insensitive to the TRPC channel blockers Pyr10 and SAR7334. In addition, preventing the mitochondrial Ca2+ uptake inhibited SOCs which were unaffected by inhibitors of the Ca2+-independent phospholipase A2 (iPLA2. Altogether, Orai2 channels are present at the beginning of the embryonic murine cortico-genesis and form the core component of native SOCs in the immature cortex. This Ca2+ route is likely to play a role in the formation of the brain cortex.

  8. Differential interactions of cerebellin precursor protein (Cbln) subtypes and neurexin variants for synapse formation of cortical neurons.

    Joo, Jae-Yeol; Lee, Sung-Jin; Uemura, Takeshi; Yoshida, Tomoyuki; Yasumura, Misato; Watanabe, Masahiko; Mishina, Masayoshi


    Trans-synaptic interaction of postsynaptic glutamate receptor δ2 and presynaptic neurexins (NRXNs) through cerebellin precursor protein (Cbln) 1 mediates synapse formation in the cerebellum [T. Uemura, S.J. Lee, M. Yasumura, T. Takeuchi, T. Yoshida, M. Ra, R. Taguchi, K. Sakimura, M. Mishina, Cell 141 (2010) 1068-1079]. This finding raises a question whether other Cbln family members interact with NRXNs to regulate synapse formation in the forebrain. Here, we showed that Cbln1 and Cbln2 induced presynaptic differentiation of cultured cortical neurons, while Cbln4 exhibited little activity. When compared with neuroligin 1, Cbln1 and Cbln2 induced preferentially inhibitory presynaptic differentiation rather than excitatory one in cortical cultures. The synaptogenic activities of Cbln1 and Cbln2 were suppressed by the addition of the extracellular domain of NRXN1β to the cortical neuron cultures. Consistently, Cbln1 and Cbln2 showed robust binding activities to NRXN1α and three β-NRXNs, while only weak interactions were observed between Cbln4 and NRXNs. The interactions of Cbln1, Cbln2 and Cbln4 were selective for NRXN variants containing splice segment (S) 4. Affinities for NRXNs estimated by surface plasmon resonance analysis were variable among Cbln subtypes. Cbln1 showed higher affinities to NRXNs than Cbln2, while the binding ability of Cbln4 was much lower than those of Cbln1 and Cbln2. The affinities of Cbln1 and Cbln2 were comparable between NRXN1α and NRXN1β, but those for NRXN2β and NRXN3β were lower. These results suggest that Cbln subtypes exert synaptogenic activities in cortical neurons by differentially interacting with NRXN variants containing S4.

  9. Pharmacological Characterization of the Native Store-Operated Calcium Channels of Cortical Neurons from Embryonic Mouse Brain

    Chauvet, Sylvain; Jarvis, Louis; Chevallet, Mireille; Shrestha, Niroj; Groschner, Klaus; Bouron, Alexandre


    In the murine brain, the first post-mitotic cortical neurons formed during embryogenesis express store-operated channels (SOCs) sensitive to Pyr3, initially proposed as a blocker of the transient receptor potential channel of C type 3 (TRPC3 channel). However, Pyr3 does not discriminate between Orai and TRPC3 channels, questioning the contribution of TRPC3 in SOCs. This study was undertaken to clarify the molecular identity and the pharmacological profile of native SOCs from E13 cortical neurons. The mRNA expression of STIM1-2 and Orai1-3 was assessed by quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction. E13 cortical neurons expressed STIM1-2 mRNAs, with STIM2 being the predominant isoform. Only transcripts of Orai2 were found but no Orai1 and Orai3 mRNAs. Blockers of Orai and TRPC channels (Pyr6, Pyr10, EVP4593, SAR7334, and GSK-7975A) were used to further characterize the endogenous SOCs. Their activity was recorded using the fluorescent Ca2+ probe Fluo-4. Cortical SOCs were sensitive to the Orai blockers Pyr6 and GSK-7975A, as well as to EVP4593, zinc, copper, and gadolinium ions, the latter one being the most potent SOCs blocker tested (IC50 ∼10 nM). SOCs were insensitive to the TRPC channel blockers Pyr10 and SAR7334. In addition, preventing mitochondrial Ca2+ uptake inhibited SOCs which were unaffected by inhibitors of the Ca2+-independent phospholipase A2. Altogether, Orai2 channels are present at the beginning of the embryonic murine cortico-genesis and form the core component of native SOCs in the immature cortex. This Ca2+ route is likely to play a role in the formation of the brain cortex. PMID:28018223

  10. Assessment of primary neuronal culture as a model for soman-induced neurotoxicity and effectiveness of nemantine as a neuroprotective drug

    Deshpande, S.S.; Smith, C.D.; Filbert, M.G.


    An in vitro mammalian model neuronal system to evaluate the intrinsic toxicity of soman and other neurotoxicants as well as the efficacy of potential countermeasures was investigated. The link between soman toxicity glutamate hyperactivity and neuronal death in the central nervous system was investigated in primary dissociated cell cultures from rat hippocampus and cerebral neocortex. Exposure of cortical or hippocampal neurons to glutamate for 30 min produced neuronal death in almost 80% of the cells examined at 24 h. Hippocampal neurons exposed to soman for 15-12Omin at 0.1 %M concentration caused almost complete inhibition ( > 90%) of acetylcholinesterase but failed to show any evidence of effects on cell viability, indicating a lack of direct cytotoxicity by this agent. Acetylcholine (ACh, 0.1 mM), alone or in combination with soman, did not potentiate glutamate toxicity in hippocampal neurons. Memantine, a drug used for the therapy of Parkinson`s disease, spasticity and other brain disorders, significantly protected hippocampal and cortical neurons in culture against glutamate and N-methyl-D- aspartate (NN4DA) excitotoxicity. In rats a single dose of memantine (18 mg/kg) administered 1 h prior to a s.c. injection of a 0.9 LD50 dose of soman reduced the severity of convulsions and increased survival. Survival. however, was accompanied by neuronal loss in the frontal cortex, piriform cortex and hippocampus.

  11. Assessment of primary neuronal culture as a model for soman-induced neurotoxicity and effectiveness of memantine as a neuroprotective drug

    Deshpande, S.S.; Smith, C.D.; Filbert, M.G.


    An in vitro mammalian model neuronal system to evaluate the intrinsic toxicity of soman and other neurotoxicants as well as the efficacy of potential countermeasures was investigated. The link between soman toxicity, glutamate hyperactivity and neuronal death in the central nervous system was investigated in primary dissociated cell cultures from rat hippocampus and cerebral neocortex. Exposure of cortical or hippocampal neurons to glutamate for 30 min produced neuronal death in almost 800/0 of the cells examined at 24 h. Hippocampal neurons exposed to soman for 15-120 min at 0.1 ptN,concentration caused almost complete inhibition > 90% of acetylcholinesterase but failed to show any evidence of effects on cell viability, indicating a lack of direct cytotoxicity by this agent. Acetylcholine (ACh, 0.1 mNI). alone or in combination with soman. did not potentiate glutamate toxicity in hippocampal neurons. Memantine, a drug used for the therapy of Parkinson`s disease, spasticity and other brain disorders. significantly protected hippocampal and cortical neurons in culture against glutamate and N-methyl-D- aspartate (NNIDA) excitotoxicity. In rats a single dose of memantine (18 mg kg) administered 1 h prior to a s.c. injection of a 0.9 LD50 dose of soman reduced the severity of convulsions and increased survival. Survival. however, was accompanied by neuronal loss in the frontal cortex, piriform cortex and hippocampus.

  12. Increased Na+/Ca2+ exchanger activity promotes resistance to excitotoxicity in cortical neurons of the ground squirrel (a Hibernator.

    Juan-Juan Zhao

    Full Text Available Ground squirrel, a hibernating mammalian species, is more resistant to ischemic brain stress than rat. Gaining insight into the adaptive mechanisms of ground squirrels may help us design treatment strategies to reduce brain damage in patients suffering ischemic stroke. To understand the anti-stress mechanisms in ground squirrel neurons, we studied glutamate toxicity in primary cultured neurons of the Daurian ground squirrel (Spermophilus dauricus. At the neuronal level, for the first time, we found that ground squirrel was more resistant to glutamate excitotoxicity than rat. Mechanistically, ground squirrel neurons displayed a similar calcium influx to the rat neurons in response to glutamate or N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA perfusion. However, the rate of calcium removal in ground squirrel neurons was markedly faster than in rat neurons. This allows ground squirrel neurons to maintain lower level of intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca2+]i upon glutamate insult. Moreover, we found that Na+/Ca2+ exchanger (NCX activity was higher in ground squirrel neurons than in rat neurons. We also proved that overexpression of ground squirrel NCX2, rather than NCX1 or NCX3, in rat neurons promoted neuron survival against glutamate toxicity. Taken together, our results indicate that ground squirrel neurons are better at maintaining calcium homeostasis than rat neurons and this is likely achieved through the activity of ground squirrel NCX2. Our findings not only reveal an adaptive mechanism of mammalian hibernators at the cellular level, but also suggest that NCX2 of ground squirrel may have therapeutic value for suppressing brain ischemic damage.

  13. Increased Na+/Ca2+ Exchanger Activity Promotes Resistance to Excitotoxicity in Cortical Neurons of the Ground Squirrel (a Hibernator)

    Zhao, Juan-Juan; Gao, Shan; Jing, Jun-Zhan; Zhu, Ming-Yue; Zhou, Chen; Chai, Zhen


    Ground squirrel, a hibernating mammalian species, is more resistant to ischemic brain stress than rat. Gaining insight into the adaptive mechanisms of ground squirrels may help us design treatment strategies to reduce brain damage in patients suffering ischemic stroke. To understand the anti-stress mechanisms in ground squirrel neurons, we studied glutamate toxicity in primary cultured neurons of the Daurian ground squirrel (Spermophilus dauricus). At the neuronal level, for the first time, we found that ground squirrel was more resistant to glutamate excitotoxicity than rat. Mechanistically, ground squirrel neurons displayed a similar calcium influx to the rat neurons in response to glutamate or N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) perfusion. However, the rate of calcium removal in ground squirrel neurons was markedly faster than in rat neurons. This allows ground squirrel neurons to maintain lower level of intracellular calcium concentration ([Ca2+]i) upon glutamate insult. Moreover, we found that Na+/Ca2+ exchanger (NCX) activity was higher in ground squirrel neurons than in rat neurons. We also proved that overexpression of ground squirrel NCX2, rather than NCX1 or NCX3, in rat neurons promoted neuron survival against glutamate toxicity. Taken together, our results indicate that ground squirrel neurons are better at maintaining calcium homeostasis than rat neurons and this is likely achieved through the activity of ground squirrel NCX2. Our findings not only reveal an adaptive mechanism of mammalian hibernators at the cellular level, but also suggest that NCX2 of ground squirrel may have therapeutic value for suppressing brain ischemic damage. PMID:25415196

  14. Phospho-Rb mediating cell cycle reentry induces early apoptosis following oxygen-glucose deprivation in rat cortical neurons.

    Yu, Ying; Ren, Qing-Guo; Zhang, Zhao-Hui; Zhou, Ke; Yu, Zhi-Yuan; Luo, Xiang; Wang, Wei


    The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between cell cycle reentry and apoptosis in cultured cortical neurons following oxygen-glucose deprivation (OGD). We found that the percentage of neurons with BrdU uptake, TUNEL staining, and colocalized BrdU uptake and TUNEL staining was increased relative to control 6, 12 and 24 h after 1 h of OGD. The number of neurons with colocalized BrdU and TUNEL staining was decreased relative to the number of TUNEL-positive neurons at 24 h. The expression of phosphorylated retinoblastoma protein (phospho-Rb) was significantly increased 6, 12 and 24 h after OGD, parallel with the changes in BrdU uptake. Phospho-Rb and TUNEL staining were colocalized in neurons 6 and 12 h after OGD. This colocalization was strikingly decreased 24 h after OGD. Treatment with the cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor roscovitine (100 μM) decreased the expression of phospho-Rb and reduced neuronal apoptosis in vitro. These results demonstrated that attempted cell cycle reentry with phosphorylation of Rb induce early apoptosis in neurons after OGD and there must be other mechanisms involved in the later stages of neuronal apoptosis besides cell cycle reentry. Phosphoralated Rb may be an important factor which closely associates aberrant cell cycle reentry with the early stages of neuronal apoptosis following ischemia/hypoxia in vitro, and pharmacological interventions for neuroprotection may be useful directed at this keypoint.

  15. Slow Bursting Neurons of Mouse Cortical Layer 6b Are Depolarized by Hypocretin/Orexin and Major Transmitters of Arousal

    Wenger Combremont, Anne-Laure; Bayer, Laurence; Dupré, Anouk; Mühlethaler, Michel; Serafin, Mauro


    Neurons firing spontaneously in bursts in the absence of synaptic transmission have been previously recorded in different layers of cortical brain slices. It has been suggested that such neurons could contribute to the generation of alternating UP and DOWN states, a pattern of activity seen during slow-wave sleep. Here, we show that in layer 6b (L6b), known from our previous studies to contain neurons highly responsive to the wake-promoting transmitter hypocretin/orexin (hcrt/orx), there is a set of neurons, endowed with distinct intrinsic properties, which displayed a strong propensity to fire spontaneously in rhythmic bursts. In response to small depolarizing steps, they responded with a delayed firing of action potentials which, upon higher depolarizing steps, invariably inactivated and were followed by a depolarized plateau potential and a depolarizing afterpotential. These cells also displayed a strong hyperpolarization-activated rectification compatible with the presence of an Ih current. Most L6b neurons with such properties were able to fire spontaneously in bursts. Their bursting activity was of intrinsic origin as it persisted not only in presence of blockers of ionotropic glutamatergic and GABAergic receptors but also in a condition of complete synaptic blockade. However, a small number of these neurons displayed a mix of intrinsic bursting and synaptically driven recurrent UP and DOWN states. Most of the bursting L6b neurons were depolarized and excited by hcrt/orx through a direct postsynaptic mechanism that led to tonic firing and eventually inactivation. Similarly, they were directly excited by noradrenaline, histamine, dopamine, and neurotensin. Finally, the intracellular injection of these cells with dye and their subsequent Neurolucida reconstruction indicated that they were spiny non-pyramidal neurons. These results lead us to suggest that the propensity for slow rhythmic bursting of this set of L6b neurons could be directly impeded by hcrt

  16. NPY neuron-specific Y2 receptors regulate adipose tissue and trabecular bone but not cortical bone homeostasis in mice.

    Yan-Chuan Shi

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Y2 receptor signalling is known to be important in neuropeptide Y (NPY-mediated effects on energy homeostasis and bone physiology. Y2 receptors are located post-synaptically as well as acting as auto receptors on NPY-expressing neurons, and the different roles of these two populations of Y2 receptors in the regulation of energy homeostasis and body composition are unclear. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We thus generated two conditional knockout mouse models, Y2(lox/lox and NPYCre/+;Y2(lox/lox, in which Y2 receptors can be selectively ablated either in the hypothalamus or specifically in hypothalamic NPY-producing neurons of adult mice. Specific deletion of hypothalamic Y2 receptors increases food intake and body weight compared to controls. Importantly, specific ablation of hypothalamic Y2 receptors on NPY-containing neurons results in a significantly greater adiposity in female but not male mice, accompanied by increased hepatic triglyceride levels, decreased expression of liver carnitine palmitoyltransferase (CPT1 and increased expression of muscle phosphorylated acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC. While food intake, body weight, femur length, bone mineral content, density and cortical bone volume and thickness are not significantly altered, trabecular bone volume and number were significantly increased by hypothalamic Y2 deletion on NPY-expressing neurons. Interestingly, in situ hybridisation reveals increased NPY and decreased proopiomelanocortin (POMC mRNA expression in the arcuate nucleus of mice with hypothalamus-specific deletion of Y2 receptors in NPY neurons, consistent with a negative feedback mechanism between NPY expression and Y2 receptors on NPY-ergic neurons. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Taken together these data demonstrate the anti-obesogenic role of Y2 receptors in the brain, notably on NPY-ergic neurons, possibly via inhibition of NPY neurons and concomitant stimulation of POMC-expressing neurons in the arcuate nucleus of

  17. The statistics of repeating patterns of cortical activity can be reproduced by a model network of stochastic binary neurons.

    Roxin, Alex; Hakim, Vincent; Brunel, Nicolas


    Calcium imaging of the spontaneous activity in cortical slices has revealed repeating spatiotemporal patterns of transitions between so-called down states and up states (Ikegaya et al., 2004). Here we fit a model network of stochastic binary neurons to data from these experiments, and in doing so reproduce the distributions of such patterns. We use two versions of this model: (1) an unconnected network in which neurons are activated as independent Poisson processes; and (2) a network with an interaction matrix, estimated from the data, representing effective interactions between the neurons. The unconnected model (model 1) is sufficient to account for the statistics of repeating patterns in 11 of the 15 datasets studied. Model 2, with interactions between neurons, is required to account for pattern statistics of the remaining four. Three of these four datasets are the ones that contain the largest number of transitions, suggesting that long datasets are in general necessary to render interactions statistically visible. We then study the topology of the matrix of interactions estimated for these four datasets. For three of the four datasets, we find sparse matrices with long-tailed degree distributions and an overrepresentation of certain network motifs. The remaining dataset exhibits a strongly interconnected, spatially localized subgroup of neurons. In all cases, we find that interactions between neurons facilitate the generation of long patterns that do not repeat exactly.

  18. Delayed effects of corticosterone on slow after-hyperpolarization potentials in mouse hippocampal versus prefrontal cortical pyramidal neurons.

    Anup G Pillai

    Full Text Available The rodent stress hormone corticosterone changes neuronal activity in a slow and persistent manner through transcriptional regulation. In the rat dorsal hippocampus, corticosterone enhances the amplitude of calcium-dependent potassium currents that cause a lingering slow after-hyperpolarization (sAHP at the end of depolarizing events. In this study we compared the putative region-dependency of the delayed effects of corticosterone (approximately 5 hrs after treatment on sAHP as well as other active and passive properties of layer 2/3 pyramidal neurons from three prefrontal areas, i.e. the lateral orbitofrontal, prelimbic and infralimbic cortex, with the hippocampus of adult mice. In agreement with previous studies, corticosterone increased sAHP amplitude in the dorsal hippocampus with depolarizing steps of increasing amplitude. However, in the lateral orbitofrontal, prelimbic and infralimbic cortices we did not observe any modifications of sAHP amplitude after corticosterone treatment. Properties of single action potentials or % ratio of the last spike interval with respect to the first spike interval, an indicator of accommodation in an action potential train, were not significantly affected by corticosterone in all brain regions examined. Lastly, corticosterone treatment did not induce any lasting changes in passive membrane properties of hippocampal or cortical neurons. Overall, the data indicate that corticosterone slowly and very persistently increases the sAHP amplitude in hippocampal pyramidal neurons, while this is not the case in the cortical regions examined. This implies that changes in excitability across brain regions reached by corticosterone may vary over a prolonged period of time after stress.

  19. EGFR mediates astragaloside IV-induced Nrf2 activation to protect cortical neurons against in vitro ischemia/reperfusion damages

    Gu, Da-min [Department of Anesthesiology, Affiliated Yixing People' s Hospital, Jiangsu University, Yixing (China); Lu, Pei-Hua, E-mail: [Department of Medical Oncology, Wuxi People' s Hospital Affiliated to Nanjing Medical University, Wuxi (China); Zhang, Ke; Wang, Xiang [Department of Anesthesiology, Affiliated Yixing People' s Hospital, Jiangsu University, Yixing (China); Sun, Min [Department of General Surgery, Affiliated Yixing People' s Hospital, Jiangsu University, Yixing (China); Chen, Guo-Qian [Department of Clinical Laboratory, Wuxi People' s Hospital Affiliated to Nanjing Medical University, Wuxi (China); Wang, Qiong, E-mail: [Department of Clinical Laboratory, Wuxi People' s Hospital Affiliated to Nanjing Medical University, Wuxi (China)


    In this study, we tested the potential role of astragaloside IV (AS-IV) against oxygen and glucose deprivation/re-oxygenation (OGD/R)-induced damages in murine cortical neurons, and studied the associated signaling mechanisms. AS-IV exerted significant neuroprotective effects against OGD/R by reducing reactive oxygen species (ROS) accumulation, thereby attenuating oxidative stress and neuronal cell death. We found that AS-IV treatment in cortical neurons resulted in NF-E2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) signaling activation, evidenced by Nrf2 Ser-40 phosphorylation, and its nuclear localization, as well as transcription of antioxidant-responsive element (ARE)-regulated genes: heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1), NAD(P)H:quinone oxidoreductase 1 (NQO-1) and sulphiredoxin 1 (SRXN-1). Knockdown of Nrf2 through lentiviral shRNAs prevented AS-IV-induced ARE genes transcription, and abolished its anti-oxidant and neuroprotective activities. Further, we discovered that AS-IV stimulated heparin-binding-epidermal growth factor (HB-EGF) release to trans-activate epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) in cortical neurons. Blockage or silencing EGFR prevented Nrf2 activation by AS-IV, thus inhibiting AS-IV-mediated anti-oxidant and neuroprotective activities against OGD/R. In summary, AS-IV protects cortical neurons against OGD/R damages through activating of EGFR-Nrf2 signaling. - Highlights: • Pre-treatment of astragaloside IV (AS-IV) protects murine cortical neurons from OGD/R. • AS-IV activates Nrf2-ARE signaling in murine cortical neurons. • Nrf2 is required for AS-IV-mediated anti-oxidant and neuroprotective activities. • AS-IV stimulates HB-EGF release to trans-activate EGFR in murine cortical neurons. • EGFR mediates AS-IV-induced Nrf2 activation and neuroprotection against OGD/R.

  20. Zinc Modulates Nanosilver-Induced Toxicity in Primary Neuronal Cultures.

    Ziemińska, Elżbieta; Strużyńska, Lidia


    Silver nanoparticles (NAg) have recently become one of the most commonly used nanomaterials. Since the ability of nanosilver to enter the brain has been confirmed, there has been a need to investigate mechanisms of its neurotoxicity. We previously showed that primary neuronal cultures treated with nanosilver undergo destabilization of calcium homeostasis via a mechanism involving glutamatergic NMDA receptors. Considering the fact that zinc interacts with these receptors, the aim of the present study was to examine the role of zinc in mechanisms of neuronal cell death in primary cultures. In cells treated with nanosilver, we noted an imbalance between extracellular and intracellular zinc levels. Thus, the influence of zinc deficiency and supplementation on nanosilver-evoked cytotoxicity was investigated by treatment with TPEN (a chelator of zinc ions), or ZnCl(2), respectively. Elimination of zinc leads to complete death of nanosilver-treated CGCs. In contrast, supplementation with ZnCl(2) increases viability of CGCs in a dose-dependent manner. Addition of zinc provided protection against the extra/intracellular calcium imbalance in a manner similar to MK-801, an antagonist of NMDA receptors. Zinc chelation by TPEN decreases the mitochondrial potential and dramatically increases the rate of production of reactive oxygen species. Our results indicate that zinc supplementation positively influences nanosilver-evoked changes in CGCs. This is presumed to be due to an inhibitory effect on NMDA-sensitive calcium channels.

  1. Differential Molecular Targets for Neuroprotective Effect of Chlorogenic Acid and its Related Compounds Against Glutamate Induced Excitotoxicity and Oxidative Stress in Rat Cortical Neurons.

    Rebai, Olfa; Belkhir, Manel; Sanchez-Gomez, María Victoria; Matute, Carlos; Fattouch, Sami; Amri, Mohamed


    The present study has been designed to explore the molecular mechanism and signaling pathway targets of chlorogenic acid (CGA) and its main hydrolysates, caffeic (CA) and quinic acid in the protective effect against glutamate-excitotoxicity. For this purpose 8-DIV cortical neurons in primary culture were exposed to 50 μM L-glutamic acid plus 10 µM glycine, with or without 10-100 μM tested compounds. Chlorogenic acid and caffeic acid via their antioxidant properties inhibited cell death induced by glutamate in dose depended manner. However, quinic acid slightly protects neurons at a higher dose. DCF, JC-1 and Ca(2+)sensitive fluorescent dye fura-2, were used to measure intracellular ROS accumulation, mitochondrial membrane potential integration and intracellular calcium concentration [Ca(2+)] i . Results indicate that similarly, CGA acts as a protective agent against glutamate-induced cortical neurons injury by suppressing the accumulation of endogenous ROS and restore the mitochondrial membrane potential, activate the enzymatic antioxidant system by the increase levels of SOD activity and modulate the rise of intracellular calcium levels by increasing the rise of intracellular concentrations of Ca(2+)caused by glutamate overstimulation. PKC signaling cascade appear to be engaged in this protective mechanism. Interseling, CGA and CA also exhibit antiapoptotic properties against glutamate-induced cleaved activation of pro-caspases; caspase 1,8 and 9 and calpain (PD 150606,Calpeptin and MDL 28170).These data suggest that neuroprotective activity of CGA ester may occurs throught its hydrolysate,the caffeic acid and its interaction with intracellular molecules suggesting that CGA exert its neuroprotection via its caffeoly acid group that might potentially be used as a therapeutic agent in neurodegeneratives disorders associated with glutamate excitotoxicity.

  2. The Ketone Body, β-Hydroxybutyrate Stimulates the Autophagic Flux and Prevents Neuronal Death Induced by Glucose Deprivation in Cortical Cultured Neurons.

    Camberos-Luna, Lucy; Gerónimo-Olvera, Cristian; Montiel, Teresa; Rincon-Heredia, Ruth; Massieu, Lourdes


    Glucose is the major energy substrate in brain, however, during ketogenesis induced by starvation or prolonged hypoglycemia, the ketone bodies (KB), acetoacetate and β-hydroxybutyrate (BHB) can substitute for glucose. KB improve neuronal survival in diverse injury models, but the mechanisms by which KB prevent neuronal damage are still not well understood. In the present study we have investigated whether protection by the D isomer of BHB (D-BHB) against neuronal death induced by glucose deprivation (GD), is related to autophagy. Autophagy is a lysosomal-dependent degradation process activated during nutritional stress, which leads to the digestion of damaged proteins and organelles providing energy for cell survival. Results show that autophagy is activated in cortical cultured neurons during GD, as indicated by the increase in the levels of the lipidated form of the microtubule associated protein light chain 3 (LC3-II), and the number of autophagic vesicles. At early phases of glucose reintroduction (GR), the levels of p62 declined suggesting that the degradation of the autophagolysosomal content takes place at this time. In cultures exposed to GD and GR in the presence of D-BHB, the levels of LC3-II and p62 rapidly declined and remained low during GR, suggesting that the KB stimulates the autophagic flux preventing autophagosome accumulation and improving neuronal survival.

  3. HH domain of Alzheimer's disease Abeta provides structural basis for neuronal binding in PC12 and mouse cortical/hippocampal neurons.

    Joseph F Poduslo

    Full Text Available A key question in understanding AD is whether extracellular Abeta deposition of parenchymal amyloid plaques or intraneuronal Abeta accumulation initiates the AD process. Amyloid precursor protein (APP is endocytosed from the cell surface into endosomes where it is cleaved to produce soluble Abeta which is then released into the brain interstitial fluid. Intraneuronal Abeta accumulation is hypothesized to predominate from the neuronal uptake of this soluble extracellular Abeta rather than from ER/Golgi processing of APP. We demonstrate that substitution of the two adjacent histidine residues of Abeta40 results in a significant decrease in its binding with PC12 cells and mouse cortical/hippocampal neurons. These substitutions also result in a dramatic enhancement of both thioflavin-T positive fibril formation and binding to preformed Abeta fibrils while maintaining its plaque-binding ability in AD transgenic mice. Hence, alteration of the histidine domain of Abeta prevented neuronal binding and drove Abeta to enhanced fibril formation and subsequent amyloid plaque deposition--a potential mechanism for removing toxic species of Abeta. Substitution or even masking of these Abeta histidine residues might provide a new therapeutic direction for minimizing neuronal uptake and subsequent neuronal degeneration and maximizing targeting to amyloid plaques.

  4. Adhesion and growth of electrically-active cortical neurons on polyethyleimine patterns microprinted on PEO-PPO-PEO triblockcopolymer-coated hydrophobic surfaces

    Ruardij, T.G.; Boogaart, van den M.A.F.; Rutten, W.L.C.


    This paper describes the adhesion and growth of dissociated cortical neurons on chemically patterned surfaces over a time period of 30 days. The presence of neurons was demonstrated by measurement of spontaneous bioelectrical activity on a micropatterned multielectrode array. Chemical patterns were

  5. MDMA (Ecstasy) Decreases the Number of Neurons and Stem Cells in Embryonic Cortical Cultures

    Kindlundh-Högberg, Anna M S; Pickering, Chris; Wicher, Grzegorz


    Ecstasy, 3,4-methylenedioxymetamphetamine (MDMA), is a recreational drug used among adolescents, including young pregnant women. MDMA passes the placental barrier and may therefore influence fetal development. The aim was to investigate the direct effect of MDMA on cortical cells using dissociated...... CNS cortex of rat embryos, E17. The primary culture was exposed to a single dose of MDMA and collected 5 days later. MDMA caused a dramatic, dose-dependent (100 and 400 muM) decrease in nestin-positive stem cell density, as well as a significant reduction (400 muM) in NeuN-positive cells. By q......PCR, MDMA (200 muM) caused a significant decrease in mRNA expression of the 5HT3 receptor, dopamine D(1) receptor, and glutamate transporter EAAT2-1, as well as an increase in mRNA levels of the NMDA NR1 receptor subunit and the 5HT(1A) receptor. In conclusion, MDMA caused a marked reduction in stem cells...

  6. The calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II inhibitor KN-93 protects rat cerebral cortical neurons from N-methyl-D-aspartic acid-induced injury

    Xuewen Liu; Cui Ma; Ruixian Xing; Weiwei Zhang; Buxian Tian; Xidong Li; Qiushi Li; Yanhui Zhang


    In this study, primary cultured cerebral cortical neurons of Sprague-Dawley neonatal rats were treated with 0.25, 0.5, and 1.0 μM calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II inhibitor KN-93 after 50 μM N-methyl-D-aspartic acid-induced injury. Results showed that, compared with N-methyl-Daspartic acid-induced injury neurons, the activity of cells markedly increased, apoptosis was significantly reduced, leakage of lactate dehydrogenase decreased, and intracellular Ca2+ concentrations in neurons reduced after KN-93 treatment. The expression of caspase-3, phosphorylated calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II and total calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II protein decreased after KN-93 treatment. And the effect was apparent at a dose of 1.0 μM KN-93. Experimental findings suggest that KN-93 can induce a dose-dependent neuroprotective effect, and that the underlying mechanism may be related to the down-regulation of caspase-3 and calmodulin- dependent protein kinase II expression.

  7. Thalamic activation modulates the responses of neurons in rat primary auditory cortex: an in vivo intracellular recording study.

    Lei Han

    Full Text Available Auditory cortical plasticity can be induced through various approaches. The medial geniculate body (MGB of the auditory thalamus gates the ascending auditory inputs to the cortex. The thalamocortical system has been proposed to play a critical role in the responses of the auditory cortex (AC. In the present study, we investigated the cellular mechanism of the cortical activity, adopting an in vivo intracellular recording technique, recording from the primary auditory cortex (AI while presenting an acoustic stimulus to the rat and electrically stimulating its MGB. We found that low-frequency stimuli enhanced the amplitudes of sound-evoked excitatory postsynaptic potentials (EPSPs in AI neurons, whereas high-frequency stimuli depressed these auditory responses. The degree of this modulation depended on the intensities of the train stimuli as well as the intervals between the electrical stimulations and their paired sound stimulations. These findings may have implications regarding the basic mechanisms of MGB activation of auditory cortical plasticity and cortical signal processing.

  8. Force spectroscopy measurements show that cortical neurons exposed to excitotoxic agonists stiffen before showing evidence of bleb damage.

    Shan Zou

    Full Text Available In ischemic and traumatic brain injury, hyperactivated glutamate (N-methyl-D-aspartic acid, NMDA and sodium (Nav channels trigger excitotoxic neuron death. Na(+, Ca(++ and H2O influx into affected neurons elicits swelling (increased cell volume and pathological blebbing (disassociation of the plasma membrane's bilayer from its spectrin-actomyosin matrix. Though usually conflated in injured tissue, cell swelling and blebbing are distinct processes. Around an injury core, salvageable neurons could be mildly swollen without yet having suffered the bleb-type membrane damage that, by rendering channels leaky and pumps dysfunctional, exacerbates the excitotoxic positive feedback spiral. Recognizing when neuronal inflation signifies non-lethal osmotic swelling versus blebbing should further efforts to salvage injury-penumbra neurons. To assess whether the mechanical properties of osmotically-swollen versus excitotoxically-blebbing neurons might be cytomechanically distinguishable, we measured cortical neuron elasticity (gauged via atomic force microscopy (AFM-based force spectroscopy upon brief exposure to hypotonicity or to excitotoxic agonists (glutamate and Nav channel activators, NMDA and veratridine. Though unperturbed by solution exchange per se, elasticity increased abruptly with hypotonicity, with NMDA and with veratridine. Neurons then invariably softened towards or below the pre-treatment level, sometimes starting before the washout. The initial channel-mediated stiffening bespeaks an abrupt elevation of hydrostatic pressure linked to NMDA or Nav channel-mediated ion/H2O fluxes, together with increased [Ca(++]int-mediated submembrane actomyosin contractility. The subsequent softening to below-control levels is consistent with the onset of a lethal level of bleb damage. These findings indicate that dissection/identification of molecular events during the excitotoxic transition from stiff/swollen to soft/blebbing is warranted and should be

  9. Ketamine Increases the Function of γ-Aminobutyric Acid Type A Receptors in Hippocampal and Cortical Neurons.

    Wang, Dian-Shi; Penna, Antonello; Orser, Beverley A


    The "dissociative " general anesthetic ketamine is a well-known N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor antagonist. However, whether ketamine, at clinically relevant concentrations, increases the activity of inhibitory γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) receptor type A (GABAA) receptors in different brain regions remains controversial. Here, the authors studied the effects of ketamine on synaptic and extrasynaptic GABAA receptors in hippocampal neurons. Ketamine modulation of extrasynaptic GABAA receptors in cortical neurons was also examined. Whole cell currents were recorded from cultured murine neurons. Current evoked by exogenous GABA, miniature inhibitory postsynaptic currents, and currents directly activated by ketamine were studied. Ketamine did not alter the amplitude, frequency, or kinetics of postsynaptic currents but increased a tonic inhibitory current generated by extrasynaptic GABAA receptors in hippocampal neurons. For example, ketamine (100 µM) increased the tonic current by 33.6 ± 6.5% (mean ± SEM; 95% CI, 18.2 to 48.9; n = 8, P Ketamine shifted the GABA concentration-response curve to the left, but only when GABAA receptors were activated by low concentrations of GABA (n = 6). The selective increase in tonic current was attributed to ketamine increasing the apparent potency of GABA at high-affinity extrasynaptic GABAA receptors. Ketamine also increased a tonic current in cortical neurons (n = 11). Ketamine directly gated the opening of GABAA receptors, but only at high concentrations that are unlikely to occur during clinical use. Clinically relevant concentrations of ketamine increased the activity of high-affinity extrasynaptic GABAA receptors in the hippocampus and cortex, an effect that likely contributes to ketamine's neurodepressive properties.

  10. Functional differentiation of macaque visual temporal cortical neurons using a parametric action space.

    Vangeneugden, Joris; Pollick, Frank; Vogels, Rufin


    Neurons in the rostral superior temporal sulcus (STS) are responsive to displays of body movements. We employed a parametric action space to determine how similarities among actions are represented by visual temporal neurons and how form and motion information contributes to their responses. The stimulus space consisted of a stick-plus-point-light figure performing arm actions and their blends. Multidimensional scaling showed that the responses of temporal neurons represented the ordinal similarity between these actions. Further tests distinguished neurons responding equally strongly to static presentations and to actions ("snapshot" neurons), from those responding much less strongly to static presentations, but responding well when motion was present ("motion" neurons). The "motion" neurons were predominantly found in the upper bank/fundus of the STS, and "snapshot" neurons in the lower bank of the STS and inferior temporal convexity. Most "motion" neurons showed strong response modulation during the course of an action, thus responding to action kinematics. "Motion" neurons displayed a greater average selectivity for these simple arm actions than did "snapshot" neurons. We suggest that the "motion" neurons code for visual kinematics, whereas the "snapshot" neurons code for form/posture, and that both can contribute to action recognition, in agreement with computation models of action recognition.

  11. In vitro Neurons in Mammalian Cortical Layer 4 Exhibit Intrinsic Oscillatory Activity in the 10- to 50-Hz Frequency Range

    Llinas, Rodolfo R.; Grace, Anthony A.; Yarom, Yosef


    We report here the presence of fast subthreshold oscillatory potentials recorded in vitro from neurons within layer 4 of the guinea pig frontal cortex. Two types of oscillatory neurons were recorded: (i) One type exhibited subthreshold oscillations whose frequency increased with membrane depolarization and encompassed a range of 10-45 Hz. Action potentials in this type of neuron demonstrated clear after-hyperpolarizations. (ii) The second type of neuron was characterized by narrow-frequency oscillations near 35-50 Hz. These oscillations often outlasted the initiating depolarizing stimulus. No calcium component could be identified in their action potential. In both types of cell the subthreshold oscillations were tetrodotoxin-sensitive, indicating that the depolarizing phase of the oscillation was generated by a voltage-dependent sodium conductance. The initial depolarizing phase was followed by a potassium conductance responsible for the falling phase of the oscillatory wave. In both types of cell, the subthreshold oscillation could trigger spikes at the oscillatory frequency, if the membrane was sufficiently depolarized. Combining intracellular recordings with Lucifer yellow staining showed that the narrow-frequency oscillatory activity was produced by a sparsely spinous interneuron located in layer 4 of the cortex. This neuron has extensive local axonal collaterals that ramify in layers 3 and 4 such that they may contribute to the columnar synchronization of activity in the 40- to 50-Hz range. Cortical activity in this frequency range has been proposed as the basis for the "conjunctive properties" of central nervous system networks.

  12. Screening with an NMNAT2-MSD platform identifies small molecules that modulate NMNAT2 levels in cortical neurons

    Ali, Yousuf O.; Bradley, Gillian; Lu, Hui-Chen


    Nicotinamide mononucleotide adenylyl transferase 2 (NMNAT2) is a key neuronal maintenance factor and provides potent neuroprotection in numerous preclinical models of neurological disorders. NMNAT2 is significantly reduced in Alzheimer’s, Huntington’s, Parkinson’s diseases. Here we developed a Meso Scale Discovery (MSD)-based screening platform to quantify endogenous NMNAT2 in cortical neurons. The high sensitivity and large dynamic range of this NMNAT2-MSD platform allowed us to screen the Sigma LOPAC library consisting of 1280 compounds. This library had a 2.89% hit rate, with 24 NMNAT2 positive and 13 negative modulators identified. Western analysis was conducted to validate and determine the dose-dependency of identified modulators. Caffeine, one identified NMNAT2 positive-modulator, when systemically administered restored NMNAT2 expression in rTg4510 tauopathy mice to normal levels. We confirmed in a cell culture model that four selected positive-modulators exerted NMNAT2-specific neuroprotection against vincristine-induced cell death while four selected NMNAT2 negative modulators reduced neuronal viability in an NMNAT2-dependent manner. Many of the identified NMNAT2 positive modulators are predicted to increase cAMP concentration, suggesting that neuronal NMNAT2 levels are tightly regulated by cAMP signaling. Taken together, our findings indicate that the NMNAT2-MSD platform provides a sensitive phenotypic screen to detect NMNAT2 in neurons. PMID:28266613

  13. Behavioral constraints in the development of neuronal properties: a cortical model embedded in a real-world device.

    Almássy, N; Edelman, G M; Sporns, O


    The ability of organisms to categorize diverse and often novel stimuli depends on ongoing interactions with their environment. In a modality such as vision, categorization requires the generation of both selective and invariant responses of cortical neurons to complex visual stimuli. How does behavior contribute to shaping the responses of these neurons? Analysis of this question is made difficult by the complex multilevel interactions between many neural and behavioral variables. To mitigate this difficulty, we studied the development and ongoing plasticity of pattern-selective neuronal responses by means of synthetic neural modeling. For this purpose, we constructed Darwin V, which consists of a simulated neuronal model embedded in a real-world device that is capable of motion and autonomous behavior. The neuronal model consists of four major components: a visual system (containing cortical and subcortical networks); a taste system based on conductance; sets of motor neurons capable of triggering behavior; and a diffuse ascending (value) system. The modeled visual cortex consists of two areas: a topographic map responsive to elementary features connected to a higher-order map composed of initially non-selective neuronal units. During behavior over time in its environment, Darwin V encounters numerous objects consisting of black metal cubes displaying different patterns of white blobs and stripes. Initially, the lack of specific higher-order visual responses does not allow visual pattern discrimination, and appetitive and aversive behaviors are triggered by the 'taste' (surface conductivity of objects) alone. In the course of sensory experience, however, changes occur in visual and sensorimotor connection strengths, with two major consequences. First, units within the higher visual area acquire responses that are both pattern selective and translation invariant. Second, as a result of the operation of the value system, these responses become linked to appropriate

  14. Cell cycle markers have different expression and localization patterns in neuron-like PC12 cells and primary hippocampal neurons.

    Negis, Yesim; Unal, Aysegul Yildiz; Korulu, Sirin; Karabay, Arzu


    Neuron-like PC12 cells are extensively used in place of neurons in published studies. Aim of this paper has been to compare mRNA and protein expressions of cell cycle markers; cyclinA, B, D, E; Cdk1, 2 and 4; and p27 in post-mitotic primary hippocampal neurons, mitotically active PC12 cells and NGF-differentiated post-mitotic PC12 cells. Contrary to PC12 cells, in neurons, the presence of all these markers was detected only at mRNA level; except for cyclinA, cyclinE and Cdk4, which were detectable also at protein levels. In both NGF-treated PC12 cells and neurons, cyclinE was localized only in the nucleus. In NGF-treated PC12 cells cyclinD and Cdk4 were localized in the nucleus while, in neurons cyclinD expression was not detectable; Cdk4 was localized in the cytoplasm. In neurons, cyclinA was nuclear, whereas in NGF-treated PC12 cells, it was localized in the cell body and along the processes. These results suggest that PC12 cells and primary neurons are different in terms of cell cycle protein expressions and localizations. Thus, it may not be very appropriate to use these cells as neuronal model system in order to understand neuronal physiological activities, upstream of where may lie cell cycle activation triggered events.

  15. Decoding brain responses to pixelized images in the primary visual cortex: implications for visual cortical prostheses.

    Guo, Bing-Bing; Zheng, Xiao-Lin; Lu, Zhen-Gang; Wang, Xing; Yin, Zheng-Qin; Hou, Wen-Sheng; Meng, Ming


    Visual cortical prostheses have the potential to restore partial vision. Still limited by the low-resolution visual percepts provided by visual cortical prostheses, implant wearers can currently only "see" pixelized images, and how to obtain the specific brain responses to different pixelized images in the primary visual cortex (the implant area) is still unknown. We conducted a functional magnetic resonance imaging experiment on normal human participants to investigate the brain activation patterns in response to 18 different pixelized images. There were 100 voxels in the brain activation pattern that were selected from the primary visual cortex, and voxel size was 4 mm × 4 mm × 4 mm. Multi-voxel pattern analysis was used to test if these 18 different brain activation patterns were specific. We chose a Linear Support Vector Machine (LSVM) as the classifier in this study. The results showed that the classification accuracies of different brain activation patterns were significantly above chance level, which suggests that the classifier can successfully distinguish the brain activation patterns. Our results suggest that the specific brain activation patterns to different pixelized images can be obtained in the primary visual cortex using a 4 mm × 4 mm × 4 mm voxel size and a 100-voxel pattern.

  16. Cross-Modal Plasticity Results in Increased Inhibition in Primary Auditory Cortical Areas

    Yu-Ting Mao


    Full Text Available Loss of sensory input from peripheral organ damage, sensory deprivation, or brain damage can result in adaptive or maladaptive changes in sensory cortex. In previous research, we found that auditory cortical tuning and tonotopy were impaired by cross-modal invasion of visual inputs. Sensory deprivation is typically associated with a loss of inhibition. To determine whether inhibitory plasticity is responsible for this process, we measured pre- and postsynaptic changes in inhibitory connectivity in ferret auditory cortex (AC after cross-modal plasticity. We found that blocking GABAA receptors increased responsiveness and broadened sound frequency tuning in the cross-modal group more than in the normal group. Furthermore, expression levels of glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD protein were increased in the cross-modal group. We also found that blocking inhibition unmasked visual responses of some auditory neurons in cross-modal AC. Overall, our data suggest a role for increased inhibition in reducing the effectiveness of the abnormal visual inputs and argue that decreased inhibition is not responsible for compromised auditory cortical function after cross-modal invasion. Our findings imply that inhibitory plasticity may play a role in reorganizing sensory cortex after cross-modal invasion, suggesting clinical strategies for recovery after brain injury or sensory deprivation.

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

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


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

  18. Genetic feedback regulation of frontal cortical neuronal ensembles through activity-dependent Arc expression and dopaminergic input

    Surjeet Mastwal


    Full Text Available Mental functions involve coordinated activities of specific neuronal ensembles that are embedded in complex brain circuits. Aberrant neuronal ensemble dynamics is thought to form the neurobiological basis of mental disorders. A major challenge in mental health research is to identify these cellular ensembles and determine what molecular mechanisms constrain their emergence and consolidation during development and learning. Here, we provide a perspective based on recent studies that use activity-dependent gene Arc/Arg3.1 as a cellular marker to identify neuronal ensembles and a molecular probe to modulate circuit functions. These studies have demonstrated that the transcription of Arc is activated in selective groups of frontal cortical neurons in response to specific behavioral tasks. Arc expression regulates the persistent firing of individual neurons and predicts the consolidation of neuronal ensembles during repeated learning. Therefore, the Arc pathway represents a prototypical example of activity-dependent genetic feedback regulation of neuronal ensembles. The activation of this pathway in the frontal cortex starts during early postnatal development and requires dopaminergic input. Conversely, genetic disruption of Arc leads to a hypoactive mesofrontal dopamine circuit and its related cognitive deficit. This mutual interaction suggests an auto-regulatory mechanism to amplify the impact of neuromodulators and activity-regulated genes during postnatal development. Such a mechanism may contribute to the association of mutations in dopamine and Arc pathways with neurodevelopmental psychiatric disorders. As the mesofrontal dopamine circuit shows extensive activity-dependent developmental plasticity, activity-guided modulation of dopaminergic projections or Arc ensembles during development may help to repair circuit deficits related to neuropsychiatric disorders.

  19. Inhibition of caspases and intracellular free Ca2+ concentrations are involved in resveratrol protection against apoptosis in rat primary neuron cultures

    Qi-hai GONG; Qian WANG; Jing-shan SHI; Xie-nan HUANG; Qiong LIU; Hu MA


    Aim:To investigate the influence of resveratrol (Res),a nutritional antioxidant,on the inhibition of apoptosis in rat primary neuron cultures. Methods:The cultured cortical neurons of neonatal Sprague-Dawley rats were pretreated with Res (0. 1,1.0,and 10.0μmol/L) and oxygen-glucose deprivation/reperfusion (OGD/RP) with oxygen and glucose were initiated at d 10 in vitro. Neuronal apoptosis was determined by flow cytometry,and morphological changes of neurons were observed by an electron microscope. For the mechanism studies,the intracellular free calcium concentration ([Ca2+]i) and the transcription of caspases-3 and -12 in neurons were detected by Fura 2/AM loading and real-time RT-PCR,respectively.Results:OGD/RP insult could induce an increase in the apoptotic rate of neurons (from 11.1% to 49.0%),and elicit an obvious morphological change in neurons;pretreatments with Res (0.1,1.0,and 10.0 μmol/L,respectively) significantly reduced the elevated rate of apoptosis to 41.7%,40.8%,and 37.4%,respectively,and ameliorated the neuronal morphological injury. Similarly,the OGD/RP insult obviously elicited the elevated levels of the [Ca2+]i and the expressions of caspases-3 and-12 mRNA in neurons. Res pretreatments markedly depressed the neuronal abnormal elevation of [Ca2+]i and the overexpression of caspases-3 and -12 mRNA in a concentration-dependent manner. Conclusion:Res can attenuate the rat cortical neuronal apoptosis induced by OGD/RP. The mechanisms are,at least partly,due to the inhibition of the calcium overload and the overexpression of caspases-3 and - 12 mRNA.

  20. Selective vulnerability of spinal and cortical motor neuron subpopulations in delta7 SMA mice.

    d'Errico, Paolo; Boido, Marina; Piras, Antonio; Valsecchi, Valeria; De Amicis, Elena; Locatelli, Denise; Capra, Silvia; Vagni, Francesco; Vercelli, Alessandro; Battaglia, Giorgio


    Loss of the survival motor neuron gene (SMN1) is responsible for spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), the most common inherited cause of infant mortality. Even though the SMA phenotype is traditionally considered as related to spinal motor neuron loss, it remains debated whether the specific targeting of motor neurons could represent the best therapeutic option for the disease. We here investigated, using stereological quantification methods, the spinal cord and cerebral motor cortex of ∆7 SMA mice during development, to verify extent and selectivity of motor neuron loss. We found progressive post-natal loss of spinal motor neurons, already at pre-symptomatic stages, and a higher vulnerability of motor neurons innervating proximal and axial muscles. Larger motor neurons decreased in the course of disease, either for selective loss or specific developmental impairment. We also found a selective reduction of layer V pyramidal neurons associated with layer V gliosis in the cerebral motor cortex. Our data indicate that in the ∆7 SMA model SMN loss is critical for the spinal cord, particularly for specific motor neuron pools. Neuronal loss, however, is not selective for lower motor neurons. These data further suggest that SMA pathogenesis is likely more complex than previously anticipated. The better knowledge of SMA models might be instrumental in shaping better therapeutic options for affected patients.

  1. In Vivo Voltage-Sensitive Dye Study of Lateral Spreading of Cortical Activity in Mouse Primary Visual Cortex Induced by a Current Impulse.

    Tamás Dávid Fehérvári

    Full Text Available In the mammalian primary visual cortex (V1, lateral spreading of excitatory potentials is believed to be involved in spatial integrative functions, but the underlying cortical mechanism is not well understood. Visually-evoked population-level responses have been shown to propagate beyond the V1 initial activation site in mouse, similar to higher mammals. Visually-evoked responses are, however, affected by neuronal circuits prior to V1 (retina, LGN, making the separate analysis of V1 difficult. Intracortical stimulation eliminates these initial processing steps. We used in vivo RH1691 voltage-sensitive dye (VSD imaging and intracortical microstimulation in adult C57BL/6 mice to elucidate the spatiotemporal properties of population-level signal spreading in V1 cortical circuits. The evoked response was qualitatively similar to that measured in single-cell electrophysiological experiments in rodents: a fast transient fluorescence peak followed by a fast and a slow decrease or hyperpolarization, similar to EPSP and fast and slow IPSPs in single cells. The early cortical response expanded at speeds commensurate with long horizontal projections (at 5% of the peak maximum, 0.08-0.15 m/s however, the bulk of the VSD signal propagated slowly (at half-peak maximum, 0.05-0.08 m/s suggesting an important role of regenerative multisynaptic transmission through short horizontal connections in V1 spatial integrative functions. We also found a tendency for a widespread and fast cortical response suppression in V1, which was eliminated by GABAA-antagonists gabazine and bicuculline methiodide. Our results help understand the neuronal circuitry involved in lateral spreading in V1.

  2. Effects of location and timing of co-activated neurons in the auditory midbrain on cortical activity: implications for a new central auditory prosthesis

    Straka, Małgorzata M.; McMahon, Melissa; Markovitz, Craig D.; Lim, Hubert H.


    Objective. An increasing number of deaf individuals are being implanted with central auditory prostheses, but their performance has generally been poorer than for cochlear implant users. The goal of this study is to investigate stimulation strategies for improving hearing performance with a new auditory midbrain implant (AMI). Previous studies have shown that repeated electrical stimulation of a single site in each isofrequency lamina of the central nucleus of the inferior colliculus (ICC) causes strong suppressive effects in elicited responses within the primary auditory cortex (A1). Here we investigate if improved cortical activity can be achieved by co-activating neurons with different timing and locations across an ICC lamina and if this cortical activity varies across A1. Approach. We electrically stimulated two sites at different locations across an isofrequency ICC lamina using varying delays in ketamine-anesthetized guinea pigs. We recorded and analyzed spike activity and local field potentials across different layers and locations of A1. Results. Co-activating two sites within an isofrequency lamina with short inter-pulse intervals (hearing capabilities.

  3. Neuroprotective effects of triterpene glycosides from glycine max against glutamate induced toxicity in primary cultured rat cortical cells.

    Moon, Hyung-In; Lee, Jai-Heon


    To examine the neuroprotective effects of Glycine max, we tested its protection against the glutamate-induced toxicity in primary cortical cultured neurons. In order to clarify the neuroprotective mechanism(s) of this observed effect, isolation was performed to seek and identify active fractions and components. From such fractionation, two triterpene glycosides, 3-O-[α-l-rhamnopyranosyl(1-2)-β-d-glucopyranosyl(1-2)-β-d-glucuronopyranosyl]olean-12-en-3β,22β,24-triol (1) and 3-O-[β-d-glucopyranosyl(1-2)-β-d-galactopyranosyl(1-2)-β-d-glucuronopyranosyl]olean-12-en-3β,22β,24-triol (2) were isolated with the methanol extracts with of air-dried Glycine max. Among these compounds, compound 2 exhibited significant neuroprotective activities against glutamate-induced toxicity, exhibiting cell viability of about 50% at concentrations ranging from 0.1 μM to 10 μM. Therefore, the neuroprotective effect of Glycine max might be due to the inhibition of glutamate-induced toxicity by triterpene glycosides.

  4. Relationship between activity in human primary motor cortex during action observation and the mirror neuron system.

    James M Kilner

    Full Text Available The attenuation of the beta cortical oscillations during action observation has been interpreted as evidence of a mirror neuron system (MNS in humans. Here we investigated the modulation of beta cortical oscillations with the viewpoint of an observed action. We asked subjects to observe videos of an actor making a variety of arm movements. We show that when subjects were observing arm movements there was a significant modulation of beta oscillations overlying left and right sensorimotor cortices. This pattern of attenuation was driven by the side of the screen on which the observed movement occurred and not by the hand that was observed moving. These results are discussed in terms of the firing patterns of mirror neurons in F5 which have been reported to have similar properties.

  5. The influence of phospho-tau on dendritic spines of cortical pyramidal neurons in patients with Alzheimer’s disease

    Merino-Serrais, Paula; Benavides-Piccione, Ruth; Blazquez-Llorca, Lidia; Kastanauskaite, Asta; Rábano, Alberto; Avila, Jesús


    The dendritic spines on pyramidal cells represent the main postsynaptic elements of cortical excitatory synapses and they are fundamental structures in memory, learning and cognition. In the present study, we used intracellular injections of Lucifer yellow in fixed tissue to analyse over 19 500 dendritic spines that were completely reconstructed in three dimensions along the length of the basal dendrites of pyramidal neurons in the parahippocampal cortex and CA1 of patients with Alzheimer’s disease. Following intracellular injection, sections were immunostained for anti-Lucifer yellow and with tau monoclonal antibodies AT8 and PHF-1, which recognize tau phosphorylated at Ser202/Thr205 and at Ser396/404, respectively. We observed that the diffuse accumulation of phospho-tau in a putative pre-tangle state did not induce changes in the dendrites of pyramidal neurons, whereas the presence of tau aggregates forming intraneuronal neurofibrillary tangles was associated with progressive alteration of dendritic spines (loss of dendritic spines and changes in their morphology) and dendrite atrophy, depending on the degree of tangle development. Thus, the presence of phospho-tau in neurons does not necessarily mean that they suffer severe and irreversible effects as thought previously but rather, the characteristic cognitive impairment in Alzheimer’s disease is likely to depend on the relative number of neurons that have well developed tangles. PMID:23715095

  6. Integrating microRNA and mRNA expression profiles of neuronal progenitors to identify regulatory networks underlying the onset of cortical neurogenesis

    Barker Jeffery L


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Cortical development is a complex process that includes sequential generation of neuronal progenitors, which proliferate and migrate to form the stratified layers of the developing cortex. To identify the individual microRNAs (miRNAs and mRNAs that may regulate the genetic network guiding the earliest phase of cortical development, the expression profiles of rat neuronal progenitors obtained at embryonic day 11 (E11, E12 and E13 were analyzed. Results Neuronal progenitors were purified from telencephalic dissociates by a positive-selection strategy featuring surface labeling with tetanus-toxin and cholera-toxin followed by fluorescence-activated cell sorting. Microarray analyses revealed the fractions of miRNAs and mRNAs that were up-regulated or down-regulated in these neuronal progenitors at the beginning of cortical development. Nearly half of the dynamically expressed miRNAs were negatively correlated with the expression of their predicted target mRNAs. Conclusion These data support a regulatory role for miRNAs during the transition from neuronal progenitors into the earliest differentiating cortical neurons. In addition, by supplying a robust data set in which miRNA and mRNA profiles originate from the same purified cell type, this empirical study may facilitate the development of new algorithms to integrate various "-omics" data sets.

  7. Cortical neurogenesis in adult rats after ischemic brain injury:most new neurons fail to mature

    Qing-quan Li; Guan-qun Qiao; Jun Ma; Hong-wei Fan; Ying-bin Li


    The present study examines the hypothesis that endogenous neural progenitor cells isolated from the neocortex of ischemic brain can differentiate into neurons or glial cells and contribute to neural regeneration. We performed middle cerebral artery occlusion to establish a model of cerebral ischemia/reperfusion injury in adult rats. Immunohistochemical staining of the cortex 1, 3, 7, 14 or 28 days after injury revealed that neural progenitor cells double-positive for nestin and sox-2 appeared in the injured cortex 1 and 3 days post-injury, and were also positive for glial ifbrillary acidic protein. New neurons were labeled using bromodeoxyuridine and different stages of maturity were identiifed using doublecortin, microtubule-associated protein 2 and neuronal nuclei antigen immunohistochemistry. Immature new neurons coexpressing doublecortin and bromodeoxyuridine were observed in the cortex at 3 and 7 days post-injury, and semi-mature and mature new neurons double-positive for microtubule-associated protein 2 and bromode-oxyuridine were found at 14 days post-injury. A few mature new neurons coexpressing neuronal nuclei antigen and bromodeoxyuridine were observed in the injured cortex 28 days post-injury. Glial ifbrillary acidic protein/bromodeoxyuridine double-positive astrocytes were also found in the injured cortex. Our ifndings suggest that neural progenitor cells are present in the damaged cortex of adult rats with cerebral ischemic brain injury, and that they differentiate into astrocytes and immature neurons, but most neurons fail to reach the mature stage.

  8. Prospective separation and transcriptome analyses of cortical projection neurons and interneurons based on lineage tracing by Tbr2 (Eomes)-GFP/Dcx-mRFP reporters.

    Liu, Jiancheng; Wu, Xiwei; Zhang, Heying; Qiu, Runxiang; Yoshikawa, Kazuaki; Lu, Qiang


    In the cerebral cortex, projection neurons and interneurons work coordinately to establish neural networks for normal cortical functions. While the specific mechanisms that control productions of projection neurons and interneurons are beginning to be revealed, a global characterization of the molecular differences between these two neuron types is crucial for a more comprehensive understanding of their developmental specifications and functions. In this study, using lineage tracing power of combining Tbr2(Eomes)-GFP and Dcx-mRFP reporter mice, we prospectively separated intermediate progenitor cell (IPC)-derived neurons (IPNs) from non-IPC-derived neurons (non-IPNs) of the embryonic cerebral cortex. Molecular characterizations revealed that IPNs and non-IPNs were enriched with projection neurons and interneurons, respectively. Expression profiling documented cell-specific genes including differentially expressed transcriptional regulators that might be involved in cellular specifications, for instance, our data found that SOX1 and SOX2, which were known for important functions in neural stem/progenitor cells, continued to be expressed by interneurons but not by projection neurons. Transcriptome analyses of cortical neurons isolated at different stages of neurogenesis revealed distinct temporal patterns of expression of genes involved in early-born or late-born neuron specification. These data present a resource useful for further investigation of the molecular regulations and functions of projection neurons and interneurons.

  9. Activation and involvement of JNK1 / 2 in hydrogen peroxide- induced neurotoxicity in cultured rat cortical neurons

    Wei WANG; Can GAO; Xiao-yu HOU; Yong LIU; Yan-yan ZONG; Guang-yi ZHANG


    AIM: To investigate the role of c-Jun N-terminal protein kinase 1 and 2 (JNK1/2) and the main signal pathway for its activation in hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) induced apoptotic-like cortical cell death. METHODS: Using the model of oxidative stress induced by H2O2, the expression and diphosphorylation of JNK1/2 was examined by immunoblotting analysis, and neuronal apoptotic like cell death was determined by 4',6-diamidino-2-phenylindole (DAPI) staining.RESULTS: The elevation in diphosphorylation level of JNK1/2 (4.40-/5.61-fold vs sham control) was associated with the concentration of H2O2 (0-100 μmol/L) and the development of apoptotic-like cell death (11.04 %-81.01%).There was no alteration of JNK1/2 protein expression following H2O2 treatment and recovery at different time points. Administration with JNK1/2 antisense oligonucleotides not only significantly decreased JNK1/2 protein expression and activation level, but also significantly reduced cortical cell death induced by H2O2 exposure.Furthermore, both JNK1/2 diphosphorylation and apoptotic-like cell death were largely prevented by pretreatment with (5S, l0R)-(-)-5-methyl-10,11-dihydro-5H-dibenzo[a,d]cyclohepten-5,10-imine hydrogen maleate (MK-801)or omission of Ca2+ in incubation medium with ethylene glycol-bis(2-aminoethylether)-N,N,N',N-tetraacetic acid (EGTA). CONCLUSION: JNK1/2 is activated and participates in H2O2-induced apoptotic-like death in cultured rat cortical neurons mainly via N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor-mediated influx of extracellular Ca2+.

  10. New scenarios for neuronal structural plasticity in non-neurogenic brain parenchyma: the case of cortical layer II immature neurons.

    Bonfanti, Luca; Nacher, Juan


    The mammalian central nervous system, due to its interaction with the environment, must be endowed with plasticity. Conversely, the nervous tissue must be substantially static to ensure connectional invariability. Structural plasticity can be viewed as a compromise between these requirements. In adult mammals, brain structural plasticity is strongly reduced with respect to other animal groups in the phylogenetic tree. It persists under different forms, which mainly consist of remodeling of neuronal shape and connectivity, and, to a lesser extent, the production of new neurons. Adult neurogenesis is mainly restricted within two neurogenic niches, yet some gliogenic and neurogenic processes also occur in the so-called non-neurogenic tissue, starting from parenchymal progenitors. In this review we focus on a population of immature, non-newly generated neurons in layer II of the cerebral cortex, which were previously thought to be newly generated since they heavily express the polysialylated form of the neural cell adhesion molecule and doublecortin. These unusual neurons exhibit characteristics defining an additional type of structural plasticity, different from either synaptic plasticity or adult neurogenesis. Evidences concerning their morphology, antigenic features, ultrastructure, phenotype, origin, fate, and reaction to different kind of stimulations are gathered and analyzed. Their possible role is discussed in the context of an enriched complexity and heterogeneity of mammalian brain structural plasticity. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Isoquercetin protects cortical neurons from oxygen-glucose deprivation-reperfusion induced injury via suppression of TLR4-NF-кB signal pathway.

    Wang, Cai-Ping; Li, Jian-Long; Zhang, Lu-Zhong; Zhang, Xiao-Chuan; Yu, Shu; Liang, Xin-Miao; Ding, Fei; Wang, Zhi-Wei


    In the present study, oxygen-glucose deprivation followed by reperfusion (OGD/R), an in vitro model of ischemia, was used to evaluate the neuroprotective effect of isoquercetin in primary culture of rat cortical neuronal cells. It was found that isoquercetin administered prior to the insult could prevent OGD/R-induced intracellular calcium concentrations ([Ca(2+)]i) increase, lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) release and cell viability decrease. For the first time, isoquercetin is described as a neuroprotective agent that potentially explains the alleviation and prevention from OGD/R-induced injury in neurons. Mechanistic studies showed that the neuroprotective effect of isoquercetin was carried out by anti-inflammatory signaling pathway of inhibiting protein expression of toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) and nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB), and mRNA expression of TNF-α and IL-6, accompanied by the anti-apoptotic signaling pathway of deactivation of extracellular-regulated kinase (ERK), Jun kinase (JNK) and p38, and inhibition of activity of caspase-3. Therefore, these studies highlighted the confirmation of isoquercetin, a flavonoid compound, as an anti-inflammation and anti-apoptosis factor which might be used as a therapeutic strategy for the ischemia/reperfusion (I/R) brain injury and related diseases.

  12. Potentiometric Dye Imaging for Pheochromocytoma and Cortical Neurons with a Novel Measurement System Using an Integrated Complementary Metal-Oxide-Semiconductor Imaging Device

    Kobayashi, Takuma; Tagawa, Ayato; Noda, Toshihiko; Sasagawa, Kiyotaka; Tokuda, Takashi; Hatanaka, Yumiko; Tamura, Hideki; Ishikawa, Yasuyuki; Shiosaka, Sadao; Ohta, Jun


    The combination of optical imaging with voltage-sensitive dyes is a powerful tool for studying the spatiotemporal patterns of neural activity and understanding the neural networks of the brain. To visualize the potential status of multiple neurons simultaneously using a compact instrument with high density and a wide range, we present a novel measurement system using an implantable biomedical photonic LSI device with a red absorptive light filter for voltage-sensitive dye imaging (BpLSI-red). The BpLSI-red was developed for sensing fluorescence by the on-chip LSI, which was designed by using complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor (CMOS) technology. A micro-electro-mechanical system (MEMS) microfabrication technique was used to postprocess the CMOS sensor chip; light-emitting diodes (LEDs) were integrated for illumination and to enable long-term cell culture. Using the device, we succeeded in visualizing the membrane potential of 2000-3000 cells and the process of depolarization of pheochromocytoma cells (PC12 cells) and mouse cerebral cortical neurons in a primary culture with cellular resolution. Therefore, our measurement application enables the detection of multiple neural activities simultaneously.

  13. Protection against Oxygen-Glucose Deprivation/Reperfusion Injury in Cortical Neurons by Combining Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Acid with Lyciumbarbarum Polysaccharide

    Zhe Shi


    Full Text Available Ischemic stroke, characterized by the disturbance of the blood supply to the brain, is a severe worldwide health threat with high mortality and morbidity. However, there is no effective pharmacotherapy for ischemic injury. Currently, combined treatment is highly recommended for this devastating injury. In the present study, we investigated neuroprotective effects of the combination of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (ω-3 PUFAs and Lyciumbarbarum polysaccharide (LBP on cortical neurons using an in vitro ischemic model. Our study demonstrated that treatment with docosahexaenoic acid (DHA, a major component of the ω-3 PUFAs family, significantly inhibited the increase of intracellular Ca2+ in cultured wild type (WT cortical neurons subjected to oxygen-glucose deprivation/reperfusion (OGD/R injury and promoted their survival compared with the vehicle-treated control. The protective effects were further confirmed in cultured neurons with high endogenous ω-3 PUFAs that were isolated from fat-1 mice, in that a higher survival rate was found in fat-1 neurons compared with wild-type neurons after OGD/R injury. Our study also found that treatment with LBP (50 mg/L activated Trk-B signaling in cortical neurons and significantly attenuated OGD/R-induced cell apoptosis compared with the control. Notably, both combining LBP treatment with ω-3 PUFAs administration to WT neurons and adding LBP to fat-1 neurons showed enhanced effects on protecting cortical neurons against OGD/R injury via concurrently regulating the intracellular calcium overload and neurotrophic pathway. The results of the study suggest that ω-3 PUFAs and LBP are promising candidates for combined pharmacotherapy for ischemic stroke.

  14. Protection against Oxygen-Glucose Deprivation/Reperfusion Injury in Cortical Neurons by Combining Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Acid with Lyciumbarbarum Polysaccharide.

    Shi, Zhe; Wu, Di; Yao, Jian-Ping; Yao, Xiaoli; Huang, Zhijian; Li, Peng; Wan, Jian-Bo; He, Chengwei; Su, Huanxing


    Ischemic stroke, characterized by the disturbance of the blood supply to the brain, is a severe worldwide health threat with high mortality and morbidity. However, there is no effective pharmacotherapy for ischemic injury. Currently, combined treatment is highly recommended for this devastating injury. In the present study, we investigated neuroprotective effects of the combination of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (ω-3 PUFAs) and Lyciumbarbarum polysaccharide (LBP) on cortical neurons using an in vitro ischemic model. Our study demonstrated that treatment with docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), a major component of the ω-3 PUFAs family, significantly inhibited the increase of intracellular Ca(2+) in cultured wild type (WT) cortical neurons subjected to oxygen-glucose deprivation/reperfusion (OGD/R) injury and promoted their survival compared with the vehicle-treated control. The protective effects were further confirmed in cultured neurons with high endogenous ω-3 PUFAs that were isolated from fat-1 mice, in that a higher survival rate was found in fat-1 neurons compared with wild-type neurons after OGD/R injury. Our study also found that treatment with LBP (50 mg/L) activated Trk-B signaling in cortical neurons and significantly attenuated OGD/R-induced cell apoptosis compared with the control. Notably, both combining LBP treatment with ω-3 PUFAs administration to WT neurons and adding LBP to fat-1 neurons showed enhanced effects on protecting cortical neurons against OGD/R injury via concurrently regulating the intracellular calcium overload and neurotrophic pathway. The results of the study suggest that ω-3 PUFAs and LBP are promising candidates for combined pharmacotherapy for ischemic stroke.

  15. C3G/Rapgef1 Is Required in Multipolar Neurons for the Transition to a Bipolar Morphology during Cortical Development.

    Shah, Bhavin; Lutter, Daniela; Bochenek, Magdalena L; Kato, Katsuhiro; Tsytsyura, Yaroslav; Glyvuk, Natalia; Sakakibara, Akira; Klingauf, Jürgen; Adams, Ralf H; Püschel, Andreas W


    The establishment of a polarized morphology is essential for the development and function of neurons. During the development of the mammalian neocortex, neurons arise in the ventricular zone (VZ) from radial glia cells (RGCs) and leave the VZ to generate the cortical plate (CP). During their migration, newborn neurons first assume a multipolar morphology in the subventricular zone (SVZ) and lower intermediate zone (IZ). Subsequently, they undergo a multi-to-bipolar (MTB) transition to become bipolar in the upper IZ by developing a leading process and a trailing axon. The small GTPases Rap1A and Rap1B act as master regulators of neural cell polarity in the developing mouse neocortex. They are required for maintaining the polarity of RGCs and directing the MTB transition of multipolar neurons. Here we show that the Rap1 guanine nucleotide exchange factor (GEF) C3G (encoded by the Rapgef1 gene) is a crucial regulator of the MTB transition in vivo by conditionally inactivating the Rapgef1 gene in the developing mouse cortex at different time points during neuronal development. Inactivation of C3G results in defects in neuronal migration, axon formation and cortical lamination. Live cell imaging shows that C3G is required in cortical neurons for both the specification of an axon and the initiation of radial migration by forming a leading process.

  16. Flicker Adaptation of Low-Level Cortical Visual Neurons Contributes to Temporal Dilation

    Ortega, Laura; Guzman-Martinez, Emmanuel; Grabowecky, Marcia; Suzuki, Satoru


    Several seconds of adaptation to a flickered stimulus causes a subsequent brief static stimulus to appear longer in duration. Nonsensory factors, such as increased arousal and attention, have been thought to mediate this flicker-based temporal-dilation aftereffect. In this study, we provide evidence that adaptation of low-level cortical visual…

  17. Neuroprotective effect of interleukin-6 regulation of voltage-gated Na+ channels of cortical neurons is time- and dose-dependent

    Wei Xia


    Full Text Available Interleukin-6 has been shown to be involved in nerve injury and nerve regeneration, but the effects of long-term administration of high concentrations of interleukin-6 on neurons in the central nervous system is poorly understood. This study investigated the effects of 24 hour exposure of interleukin-6 on cortical neurons at various concentrations (0.1, 1, 5 and 10 ng/mL and the effects of 10 ng/mL interleukin-6 exposure to cortical neurons for various durations (2, 4, 8, 24 and 48 hours by studying voltage-gated Na + channels using a patch-clamp technique. Voltage-clamp recording results demonstrated that interleukin-6 suppressed Na + currents through its receptor in a time- and dose-dependent manner, but did not alter voltage-dependent activation and inactivation. Current-clamp recording results were consistent with voltage-clamp recording results. Interleukin-6 reduced the action potential amplitude of cortical neurons, but did not change the action potential threshold. The regulation of voltage-gated Na + channels in rat cortical neurons by interleukin-6 is time- and dose-dependent.

  18. Neuroprotective effect of interleukin-6 regulation of voltage-gated Na(+) channels of cortical neurons is time- and dose-dependent.

    Xia, Wei; Peng, Guo-Yi; Sheng, Jiang-Tao; Zhu, Fang-Fang; Guo, Jing-Fang; Chen, Wei-Qiang


    Interleukin-6 has been shown to be involved in nerve injury and nerve regeneration, but the effects of long-term administration of high concentrations of interleukin-6 on neurons in the central nervous system is poorly understood. This study investigated the effects of 24 hour exposure of interleukin-6 on cortical neurons at various concentrations (0.1, 1, 5 and 10 ng/mL) and the effects of 10 ng/mL interleukin-6 exposure to cortical neurons for various durations (2, 4, 8, 24 and 48 hours) by studying voltage-gated Na(+) channels using a patch-clamp technique. Voltage-clamp recording results demonstrated that interleukin-6 suppressed Na(+) currents through its receptor in a time- and dose-dependent manner, but did not alter voltage-dependent activation and inactivation. Current-clamp recording results were consistent with voltage-clamp recording results. Interleukin-6 reduced the action potential amplitude of cortical neurons, but did not change the action potential threshold. The regulation of voltage-gated Na(+) channels in rat cortical neurons by interleukin-6 is time- and dose-dependent.

  19. Neuroprotective effect of interleukin-6 regulation of voltage-gated Na+ channels of cortical neurons is time- and dose-dependent

    Wei Xia; Guo-yi Peng; Jiang-tao Sheng; Fang-fang Zhu; Jing-fang Guo; Wei-qiang Chen


    Interleukin-6 has been shown to be involved in nerve injury and nerve regeneration, but the effects of long-term administration of high concentrations of interleukin-6 on neurons in the central nervous system is poorly understood. This study investigated the effects of 24 hour expo-sure of interleukin-6 on cortical neurons at various concentrations (0.1, 1, 5 and 10 ng/mL) and the effects of 10 ng/mL interleukin-6 exposure to cortical neurons for various durations (2, 4, 8, 24 and 48 hours) by studying voltage-gated Na+ channels using a patch-clamp technique. Volt-age-clamp recording results demonstrated that interleukin-6 suppressed Na+ currents through its receptor in a time- and dose-dependent manner, but did not alter voltage-dependent activation and inactivation. Current-clamp recording results were consistent with voltage-clamp recording results. Interleukin-6 reduced the action potential amplitude of cortical neurons, but did not change the action potential threshold. The regulation of voltage-gated Na+channels in rat corti-cal neurons by interleukin-6 is time- and dose-dependent.

  20. An information transmission measure for the analysis of effective connectivity among cortical neurons.

    Law, Andrew J; Sharma, Gaurav; Schieber, Marc H


    We present a methodology for detecting effective connections between simultaneously recorded neurons using an information transmission measure to identify the presence and direction of information flow from one neuron to another. Using simulated and experimentally-measured data, we evaluate the performance of our proposed method and compare it to the traditional transfer entropy approach. In simulations, our measure of information transmission outperforms transfer entropy in identifying the effective connectivity structure of a neuron ensemble. For experimentally recorded data, where ground truth is unavailable, the proposed method also yields a more plausible effective connectivity structure than transfer entropy.

  1. Hypothermic Preconditioning Reverses Tau Ontogenesis in Human Cortical Neurons and is Mimicked by Protein Phosphatase 2A Inhibition

    Nina M. Rzechorzek


    Full Text Available Hypothermia is potently neuroprotective, but the molecular basis of this effect remains obscure. Changes in neuronal tau protein are of interest, since tau becomes hyperphosphorylated in injury-resistant, hypothermic brains. Noting inter-species differences in tau isoforms, we have used functional cortical neurons differentiated from human pluripotent stem cells (hCNs to interrogate tau modulation during hypothermic preconditioning at clinically-relevant temperatures. Key tau developmental transitions (phosphorylation status and splicing shift are recapitulated during hCN differentiation and subsequently reversed by mild (32 °C to moderate (28 °C cooling — conditions which reduce oxidative and excitotoxic stress-mediated injury in hCNs. Blocking a major tau kinase decreases hCN tau phosphorylation and abrogates hypothermic neuroprotection, whilst inhibition of protein phosphatase 2A mimics cooling-induced tau hyperphosphorylation and protects normothermic hCNs from oxidative stress. These findings indicate a possible role for phospho-tau in hypothermic preconditioning, and suggest that cooling drives human tau towards an earlier ontogenic phenotype whilst increasing neuronal resilience to common neurotoxic insults. This work provides a critical step forward in understanding how we might exploit the neuroprotective benefits of cooling without cooling patients.

  2. Differential estrogenic effects of the persistent organochlorine pesticides dieldrin, endosulfan, and lindane in primary neuronal cultures.

    Briz, Víctor; Molina-Molina, José-Manuel; Sánchez-Redondo, Sara; Fernández, Mariana F; Grimalt, Joan O; Olea, Nicolás; Rodríguez-Farré, Eduard; Suñol, Cristina


    The organochlorine chemicals endosulfan, dieldrin, and γ-hexachlorocyclohexane (lindane) are persistent pesticides to which people are exposed mainly via diet. Their antagonism of the γ-aminobutyric acid-A (GABA(A)) receptor makes them convulsants. They are also endocrine disruptors because of their interaction with the estrogen receptor (ER). Here, we study the effects of dieldrin, endosulfan, and lindane on ERs in primary cultures of cortical neurons (CN) and cerebellar granule cells (CGC). All the compounds tested inhibited the binding of [(3)H]-estradiol to the ER in both CN and CGC, with dieldrin in CGC showing the highest affinity. We also determined the effects of the pesticides on protein kinase B (Akt) and extracellular-regulated kinase 1 and 2 (ERK1/2) phosphorylation. Dieldrin and endosulfan increased Akt phosphorylation in CN, which was inhibited by the ERβ antagonist 4-[2-phenyl-5,7-bis(trifluoromethyl)pyrazolo[1,5-a]pyrimidin-3-yl]phenol. Instead, Akt and ERK1/2 phosphorylation induced by dieldrin in CGC was mediated by multiple activation of ERα, ERβ, and G protein-coupled receptor 30. Lindane did not activate these pathways, but it inhibited estradiol-mediated Akt and ERK1/2 activation. In CN, all the chemicals activated ERK1/2 through a mechanism involving GABA(A) and glutamate receptors. Long-term exposure to these pesticides reduced the levels of ERα, but not of ERβ. Moreover, extracts of CN treated with endosulfan, dieldrin, or lindane induced cell proliferation in MCF-7 human breast cancer-derived cells, whereas only extracts of CGC treated with dieldrin induced MCF-7 cell proliferation. Overall, the observed alterations on ER-mediated signaling and ER levels in neurons might contribute to the neurotoxicity of these organochlorine pesticides.

  3. Effects of activated ACM on expression of signal transducers in cerebral cortical neurons of rats.

    Wang, Xiaojing; Li, Zhengli; Zhu, Changgeng; Li, Zhongyu


    To explore the roles of astrocytes in the epileptogenesis, astrocytes and neurons were isolated, purified and cultured in vitro from cerebral cortex of rats. The astrocytes were activated by ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF) and astrocytic conditioned medium (ACM) was collected to treat neurons for 4, 8 and 12 h. By using Western blot, the expression of calmodulin dependent protein kinase II (CaMK II), inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and adenylate cyclase (AC) was detected in neurons. The results showed that the expression of CaMK II, iNOS and AC was increased significantly in the neurons treated with ACM from 4 h to 12 h (PACM and such signal pathways as NOS-NO-cGMP, Ca2+/CaM-CaMK II and AC-cAMP-PKA might take part in the signal transduction of epileptogenesis.

  4. An Information Transmission Measure for the Analysis of Effective Connectivity among Cortical Neurons

    Law, Andrew J.; Sharma, Gaurav; Schieber, Marc H.


    We present a methodology for detecting effective connections between simultaneously recorded neurons using an information transmission measure to identify the presence and direction of information flow from one neuron to another. Using simulated and experimentally-measured data, we evaluate the performance of our proposed method and compare it to the traditional transfer entropy approach. In simulations, our measure of information transmission outperforms transfer entropy in identifying the e...

  5. Simple cortical and thalamic neuron models for digital arithmetic circuit implementation

    Takuya eNanami


    Full Text Available Trade-off between reproducibility of neuronal activities and computational efficiency is one ofcrucial subjects in computational neuroscience and neuromorphic engineering. A wide variety ofneuronal models have been studied from different viewpoints. The digital spiking silicon neuron(DSSN model is a qualitative model that focuses on efficient implementation by digital arithmeticcircuits. We expanded the DSSN model and found appropriate parameter sets with which itreproduces the dynamical behaviors of the ionic-conductance models of four classes of corticaland thalamic neurons. We first developed a 4-variable model by reducing the number of variablesin the ionic-conductance models and elucidated its mathematical structures using bifurcationanalysis. Then, expanded DSSN models were constructed that reproduce these mathematicalstructures and capture the characteristic behavior of each neuron class. We confirmed thatstatistics of the neuronal spike sequences are similar in the DSSN and the ionic-conductancemodels. Computational cost of the DSSN model is larger than that of the recent sophisticatedIntegrate-and-Fire-based models, but smaller than the ionic-conductance models. This modelis intended to provide another meeting point for above trade-off that satisfies the demand forlarge-scale neuronal network simulation with closer-to-biology models.

  6. Hippocampal and cortical primary cilia are required for aversive memory in mice.

    Nicolas F Berbari

    Full Text Available It has been known for decades that neurons throughout the brain possess solitary, immotile, microtubule based appendages called primary cilia. Only recently have studies tried to address the functions of these cilia and our current understanding remains poor. To determine if neuronal cilia have a role in behavior we specifically disrupted ciliogenesis in the cortex and hippocampus of mice through conditional deletion of the Intraflagellar Transport 88 (Ift88 gene. The effects on learning and memory were analyzed using both Morris Water Maze and fear conditioning paradigms. In comparison to wild type controls, cilia mutants displayed deficits in aversive learning and memory and novel object recognition. Furthermore, hippocampal neurons from mutants displayed an altered paired-pulse response, suggesting that loss of IFT88 can alter synaptic properties. A variety of other behavioral tests showed no significant differences between conditional cilia mutants and controls. This type of conditional allele approach could be used to distinguish which behavioral features of ciliopathies arise due to defects in neural development and which result from altered cell physiology. Ultimately, this could lead to an improved understanding of the basis for the cognitive deficits associated with human cilia disorders such as Bardet-Biedl syndrome, and possibly more common ailments including depression and schizophrenia.

  7. Cellullar insights into cerebral cortical development: focusing on the locomotion mode of neuronal migration

    Takeshi eKawauchi


    Full Text Available The mammalian brain consists of numerous compartments that are closely connected with each other via neural networks, comprising the basis of higher order brain functions. The highly specialized structure originates from simple pseudostratified neuroepithelium-derived neural progenitors located near the ventricle. A long journey by neurons from the ventricular side is essential for the formation of a sophisticated brain structure, including a mammalian-specific six-layered cerebral cortex. Neuronal migration consists of several contiguous steps, but the locomotion mode comprises a large part of the migration. The locomoting neurons exhibit unique features; a radial glial fiber-dependent migration requiring the endocytic recycling of N-cadherin and a neuron-specific migration mode with dilation/swelling formation that requires the actin and microtubule organization possibly regulated by cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5, Dcx, p27kip1, Rac1 and POSH. Here I will introduce the roles of various cellular events, such as cytoskeletal organization, cell adhesion and membrane trafficking, in the regulation of the neuronal migration, with particular focus on the locomotion mode.

  8. Diminished perisomatic GABAergic terminals on cortical neurons adjacent to amyloid plaques

    Virginia Garcia-Marin


    Full Text Available One of the main pathological hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease (AD is the accumulation of plaques in the cerebral cortex, which may appear either in the neuropil or in direct association with neuronal somata. Since different axonal systems innervate the dendritic (mostly glutamatergic and perisomatic (mostly GABAergic regions of neurons, the accumulation of plaques in the neuropil or associated with the soma might produce different alterations to synaptic circuits. We have used a variety of conventional light, confocal and electron microscopy techniques to study their relationship with neuronal somata in the cerebral cortex from AD patients and APP/PS1 transgenic mice. The main finding was that the membrane surfaces of neurons (mainly pyramidal cells in contact with plaques lack GABAergic perisomatic synapses. Since these perisomatic synapses are thought to exert a strong influence on the output of pyramidal cells, their loss may lead to the hyperactivity of the neurons in contact with plaques. These results suggest that plaques modify circuits in a more selective manner than previously thought.

  9. Humanin rescues cultured rat cortical neurons from NMDA-induced toxicity through the alleviation of mitochondrial dysfunction

    Cui A


    Full Text Available Ai-Ling Cui,1 Ying-Hua Zhang,2 Jian-Zhong Li,3 Tianbin Song,4 Xue-Min Liu,1 Hui Wang,2 Ce Zhang,5 Guo-Lin Ma,6 Hui Zhang,7 Kefeng Li8 1Anatomy Department, Changzhi Medical College, Changzhi, Shanxi, 2Key Laboratory of Tissue Regeneration of Henan Province, Xinxiang Medical University, Xinxiang, Henan, 3Clinical Laboratory of Heji Hospital Affiliated to Changzhi Medical College, Changzhi, Shanxi, 4Department of Nuclear Medicine, Xuanwu Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing, 5Department of Physiology, Shanxi Medical University, Taiyuan, Shanxi, 6Department of Radiology, China-Japan Friendship Hospital, Beijing, 7Department of Radiology, First Clinical Medical College, Shanxi Medical University, Taiyuan, Shanxi, People’s Republic of China; 8School of Medicine, University of California – San Diego, San Diego, CA, USA Abstract: N-methyl-D-aspartate (NDMA receptor-mediated excitotoxicity has been implicated in a variety of pathological situations such as Alzheimer’s disease (AD and Parkinson’s disease. However, no effective treatments for the same have been developed so far. Humanin (HN is a 24-amino acid peptide originally cloned from the brain of patients with AD and it prevents stress-induced cell death in many cells/tissues. In our previous study, HN was found to effectively rescue rat cortical neurons. It is still not clear whether HN protects the neurons through the attenuation of mitochondrial dysfunction. In this study, excitatory toxicity was induced by NMDA, which binds the NMDA receptor in primarily cultured rat cortical neurons. We found that NMDA (100 µmol/L dramatically induced the decrease of cell viability and caused mitochondrial dysfunction. Pretreatment of the neurons with HN (1 µmol/L led to significant increases of mitochondrial succinate dehydrogenase (SDH activity and membrane potential. In addition, HN pretreatment significantly reduced the excessive production of both reactive oxygen species (ROS and nitric

  10. Entorhinal cortical innervation of parvalbumin-containing neurons (Basket and Chandelier cells) in the rat Ammon's horn.

    Kiss, J; Buzsaki, G; Morrow, J S; Glantz, S B; Leranth, C


    Physiological data suggest that in the CA1-CA3 hippocampal areas of rats, entorhinal cortical efferents directly influence the activity of interneurons, in addition to pyramidal cells. To verify this hypothesis, the following experiments were performed: 1) light microscopic double-immunostaining for parvalbumin and the anterograde tracer Phaseolus vulgaris-leucoagglutinin injected into the entorhinal cortex; 2) light and electron microscopic analysis of cleaved spectrin-immunostained (i.e., degenerating axons and boutons) hippocampal sections following entorhinal cortex lesion; and 3) an electron microscopic study of parvalbumin-immunostained hippocampal sections after entorhinal cortex lesion. The results demonstrate that in the stratum lacunosum-moleculare of the CA1 and CA3 regions, entorhinal cortical axons form asymmetric synaptic contacts on parvalbumin-containing dendritic shafts. In the stratum lacunosum-moleculare, parvalbumin-immunoreactive dendrites represent processes of GABAergic, inhibitory basket and chandelier cells; these interneurons innervate the perisomatic area and axon initial segments of pyramidal cells, respectively. A feed-forward activation of these neurons by the entorhinal input may explain the strong, short-latency inhibition of pyramidal cells.

  11. Dynamic FoxG1 expression coordinates the integration of multipolar pyramidal neuron precursors into the cortical plate.

    Miyoshi, Goichi; Fishell, Gord


    Pyramidal cells of the cerebral cortex are born in the ventricular zone and migrate through the intermediate zone to enter into the cortical plate. In the intermediate zone, these migrating precursors move tangentially and initiate the extension of their axons by transiently adopting a characteristic multipolar morphology. We observe that expression of the forkhead transcription factor FoxG1 is dynamically regulated during this transitional period. By utilizing conditional genetic strategies, we show that the downregulation of FoxG1 at the beginning of the multipolar cell phase induces Unc5D expression, the timing of which ultimately determines the laminar identity of pyramidal neurons. In addition, we demonstrate that the re-expression of FoxG1 is required for cells to transit out of the multipolar cell phase and to enter into the cortical plate. Thus, the dynamic expression of FoxG1 during migration within the intermediate zone is essential for the proper assembly of the cerebral cortex.

  12. Glutamate receptor δ1 induces preferentially inhibitory presynaptic differentiation of cortical neurons by interacting with neurexins through cerebellin precursor protein subtypes.

    Yasumura, Misato; Yoshida, Tomoyuki; Lee, Sung-Jin; Uemura, Takeshi; Joo, Jae-Yeol; Mishina, Masayoshi


    Glutamate receptor (GluR) δ1 is widely expressed in the developing forebrain, whereas GluRδ2 is selectively expressed in cerebellar Purkinje cells. Recently, we found that trans-synaptic interaction of postsynaptic GluRδ2 and pre-synaptic neurexins (NRXNs) through cerebellin precursor protein (Cbln) 1 mediates excitatory synapse formation in the cerebellum. Thus, a question arises whether GluRδ1 regulates synapse formation in the forebrain. In this study, we showed that the N-terminal domain of GluRδ1 induced inhibitory presynaptic differentiation of some populations of cultured cortical neurons. When Cbln1 or Cbln2 was added to cultures, GluRδ1 expressed in HEK293T cells induced preferentially inhibitory presynaptic differentiation of cultured cortical neurons. The synaptogenic activity of GluRδ1 was suppressed by the addition of the extracellular domain of NRXN1α or NRXN1β containing splice segment 4. Cbln subtypes directly bound to the N-terminal domain of GluRδ1. The synaptogenic activity of GluRδ1 in the presence of Cbln subtypes correlated well with their binding affinities. When transfected to cortical neurons, GluRδ1 stimulated inhibitory synapse formation in the presence of Cbln1 or Cbln2. These results together with differential interactions of Cbln subtypes with NRXN variants suggest that GluRδ1 induces preferentially inhibitory presynaptic differentiation of cortical neurons by interacting with NRXNs containing splice segment 4 through Cbln subtypes.

  13. Lysosomal membrane permeabilization is involved in oxidative stress-induced apoptotic cell death in LAMP2-deficient iPSCs-derived cerebral cortical neurons

    Cheuk-Yiu Law


    Our results from cellular fractionation and inhibitor blockade experiments further revealed that oxidative stress-induced apoptosis in the LAMP2-deficient cortical neurons was caused by increased abundance of cytosolic cathepsin L. These results suggest the involvement of lysosomal membrane permeabilization in the LAMP2 deficiency associated neural injury.

  14. Astrocytes, but not neurons, exhibit constitutive activation of P2X7 receptors in mouse acute cortical slices under non-stimulated resting conditions.

    Kamatsuka, Yosuke; Fukagawa, Manami; Furuta, Takahiro; Ohishi, Akihiro; Nishida, Kentaro; Nagasawa, Kazuki


    We previously demonstrated that the P2X7 receptor (P2X7R), a purinergic receptor, expressed by mouse cultured cortical astrocytes is constitutively activated without any exogenous stimulus, differing from the case of neurons. It is well known that astrocytic morphology differs between in vitro and in vivo situations, implying different functionalities. Brain acute slices are widely accepted as an in vitro experimental system that reflects in vivo cell conditions better than in vitro cell culture ones. We examined whether astrocytic P2X7Rs exhibited constitutive activation in mouse cortical slices. In acute cortical slices, P2X7R-immunoreactivity was detected in both glial fibrillary acidic protein-immunopositive astrocytes and microtubule-associated protein 2-immunopositive neurons. Astrocytic, but not neuronal, spontaneous uptake of propidium iodide, an indicator of P2X7R channel/pore activity, was inhibited by representative antagonists of P2X7R, but they had no effect on the uptake by astrocytes in membrane-permeabilized fixed slices. These findings indicate that astrocytes, but not neurons, in acute cortical slices exhibit constitutive activation of P2X7Rs under non-stimulated resting conditions as in the case of cell culture systems.

  15. Influence of chronic fluorosis on the expression of mitochondrial fission protein dynamin-related 1 in the cortical neurons of rats



    Objective To explore the changes of protein expression of mito-fission gene dynaminrelated 1 (Drp 1) in the cortical neurons of rats with chronic fluorosis.MethodsA total of 120 one-month-old SD rats (each weighing approximately 100—120 g at the beginning of the

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

    Warren, R A; Jones, E G


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

  17. A new model of strabismic amblyopia: Loss of spatial acuity due to increased temporal dispersion of geniculate X-cell afferents on to cortical neurons.

    Crewther, D P; Crewther, S G


    Although the neural locus of strabismic amblyopia has been shown to lie at the first site of binocular integration, first in cat and then in primate, an adequate mechanism is still lacking. Here we hypothesise that increased temporal dispersion of LGN X-cell afferents driven by the deviating eye onto single cortical neurons may provide a neural mechanism for strabismic amblyopia. This idea was investigated via single cell extracellular recordings of 93 X and 50 Y type LGN neurons from strabismic and normal cats. Both X and Y neurons driven by the non-deviating eye showed shorter latencies than those driven by either the strabismic or normal eyes. Also the mean latency difference between X and Y neurons was much greater for the strabismic cells compared with the other two groups. The incidence of lagged X-cells driven by the deviating eye of the strabismic cats was higher than that of LGN X-cells from normal animals. Remarkably, none of the cells recorded from the laminae driven by the non-deviating eye were of the lagged class. A simple computational model was constructed in which a mixture of lagged and non-lagged afferents converge on to single cortical neurons. Model cut-off spatial frequencies to a moving grating stimulus were sensitive to the temporal dispersion of the geniculate afferents. Thus strabismic amblyopia could be viewed as a lack of developmental tuning of geniculate lags for neurons driven by the amblyopic eye. Monocular control of fixation by the non-deviating eye is associated with reduced incidence of lagged neurons, suggesting that in normal vision, lagged neurons might play a role in maintaining binocular connections for cortical neurons.

  18. Lidocaine toxicity in primary afferent neurons from the rat.

    Gold, M S; Reichling, D B; Hampl, K F; Drasner, K; Levine, J D


    Evidence from both clinical studies and animal models suggests that the local anesthetic, lidocaine, is neurotoxic. However, the mechanism of lidocaine-induced toxicity is unknown. To test the hypothesis that toxicity results from a direct action of lidocaine on sensory neurons we performed in vitro histological, electrophysiological and fluorometrical experiments on isolated dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons from the adult rat. We observed lidocaine-induced neuronal death after a 4-min exposure of DRG neurons to lidocaine concentrations as low as 30 mM. Consistent with an excitotoxic mechanism of neurotoxicity, lidocaine depolarized DRG neurons at concentrations that induced cell death (EC50 = 14 mM). This depolarization occurred even though voltage-gated sodium currents and action potentials were blocked effectively at much lower concentrations. (EC50 values for lidocaine-induced block of tetrodotoxin-sensitive and -resistant voltage-gated sodium currents were 41 and 101 microM, respectively.) At concentrations similar to those that induced neurotoxicity and depolarization, lidocaine also induced an increase in the concentration of intracellular Ca++ ions ([Ca++]i; EC50 = 21 mM) via Ca++ influx through the plasma membrane as well as release of Ca++ from intracellular stores. Finally, lidocaine-induced neurotoxicity was attenuated significantly when lidocaine was applied in the presence of nominally Ca(++)-free bath solution to DRG neurons preloaded with 1,2-bis(2-aminophenoxy)ethane-N,N,N',N'-tetraacetic acid (BAPTA). Our results indicate: 1) that lidocaine is neurotoxic to sensory neurons; 2) that toxicity results from a direct action on sensory neurons; and 3) that a lidocaine-induced increase in intracellular Ca++ is a mechanism of lidocaine-induced neuronal toxicity.

  19. Cortical control of whisker movement.

    Petersen, Carl C H


    Facial muscles drive whisker movements, which are important for active tactile sensory perception in mice and rats. These whisker muscles are innervated by cholinergic motor neurons located in the lateral facial nucleus. The whisker motor neurons receive synaptic inputs from premotor neurons, which are located within the brain stem, the midbrain, and the neocortex. Complex, distributed neural circuits therefore regulate whisker movement during behavior. This review focuses specifically on cortical whisker motor control. The whisker primary motor cortex (M1) strongly innervates brain stem reticular nuclei containing whisker premotor neurons, which might form a central pattern generator for rhythmic whisker protraction. In a parallel analogous pathway, the whisker primary somatosensory cortex (S1) strongly projects to the brain stem spinal trigeminal interpolaris nucleus, which contains whisker premotor neurons innervating muscles for whisker retraction. These anatomical pathways may play important functional roles, since stimulation of M1 drives exploratory rhythmic whisking, whereas stimulation of S1 drives whisker retraction.

  20. Efficient subtractive cloning of genes activated by lipopolysaccharide and interferon γ in primary-cultured cortical cells of newborn mice.

    Osamu Miyauchi

    Full Text Available Innate immune responses play a central role in neuroprotection and neurotoxicity during inflammatory processes that are triggered by pathogen-associated molecular pattern-exhibiting agents such as bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS and that are modulated by inflammatory cytokines such as interferon γ (IFNγ. Recent findings describing the unexpected complexity of mammalian genomes and transcriptomes have stimulated further identification of novel transcripts involved in specific physiological and pathological processes, such as the neural innate immune response that alters the expression of many genes. We developed a system for efficient subtractive cloning that employs both sense and antisense cRNA drivers, and coupled it with in-house cDNA microarray analysis. This system enabled effective direct cloning of differentially expressed transcripts, from a small amount (0.5 µg of total RNA. We applied this system to isolation of genes activated by LPS and IFNγ in primary-cultured cortical cells that were derived from newborn mice, to investigate the mechanisms involved in neuroprotection and neurotoxicity in maternal/perinatal infections that cause various brain injuries including periventricular leukomalacia. A number of genes involved in the immune and inflammatory response were identified, showing that neonatal neuronal/glial cells are highly responsive to LPS and IFNγ. Subsequent RNA blot analysis revealed that the identified genes were activated by LPS and IFNγ in a cooperative or distinctive manner, thereby supporting the notion that these bacterial and cellular inflammatory mediators can affect the brain through direct but complicated pathways. We also identified several novel clones of apparently non-coding RNAs that potentially harbor various regulatory functions. Characterization of the presently identified genes will give insights into mechanisms and interventions not only for perinatal infection-induced brain damage, but also for

  1. ESP-102, a combined extract of Angelica gigas, Saururus chinensis and Schizandra chinensis, protects against glutamate-induced toxicity in primary cultures of rat cortical cells.

    Ma, Choong Je; Kim, Seung Hyun; Lee, Ki Yong; Oh, Taehwan; Kim, Sun Yeou; Sung, Sang Hyun; Kim, Young Choong


    It was reported previously that ESP-102, a combined extract of Angelica gigas, Saururus chinensis and Schizandra chinensis, significantly improved scopolamine-induced memory impairment in mice and protected primary cultured rat cortical cells against glutamate-induced toxicity. To corroborate this effect, the action patterns of ESP-102 were elucidated using the same in vitro system. ESP-102 decreased the cellular calcium concentration increased by glutamate, and inhibited the subsequent overproduction of cellular nitric oxide and reactive oxygen species to the level of control cells. It also preserved cellular activities of antioxidative enzymes such as superoxide dismutase, glutathione peroxidase and glutathione reductase reduced in the glutamate-injured neuronal cells. While a loss of mitochondrial membrane potential was observed in glutamate treated cells, the mitochondrial membrane potential was maintained by ESP-102. These results support that the actual mechanism of neuroprotective activity of ESP-102 against glutamate-induced oxidative stress might be its antioxidative activity.

  2. Selective retrograde transport of D-aspartate in spinal interneurons and cortical neurons of rats

    Rustioni, A.; Cuenod, M. (Zurich Univ. (Switzerland))


    Retrograde labeling of neuronal elements in the brain and spinal cord has been investigated by autoradiographic techniques following injections of D-(/sup 3/H)aspartate (asp), (/sup 3/H)..gamma..-aminobutyric acid (GABA) or horseradish peroxidase (HRP) in the medulla and spinal cord of rats. Twenty-four hours after D-(/sup 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 (/sup 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-(/sup 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-(/sup 3/H)asp although autoradiographic grains overlie pyramidal tract fibers on the side contralateral to the injection.

  3. Increased serum neuron specific enolase concentrations in patients with hyperglycemic cortical ischemic stroke

    Elting, JW; De Keyser, J; Sulter, G.


    A detrimental effect of hyperglycemia in ischemic brain has been demonstrated in laboratory experiments and it has been found that hyperglycemia in ischemic stroke is a predictor of poor outcome. We determined serum neuron specific enolase (NSE) concentrations in 41 consecutive patients with a cereb

  4. 3-Hydroxybutyrate regulates energy metabolism and induces BDNF expression in cerebral cortical neurons

    Marosi, Krisztina; Kim, Sang Woo; Moehl, Keelin


    . The mechanism by which 3OHB induces Bdnf gene expression involves generation of reactive oxygen species, activation of the transcription factor NF-κB, and activity of the histone acetyltransferase p300/EP300. Because BDNF plays important roles in synaptic plasticity and neuronal stress resistance, our findings...

  5. Repeated Stimulation of Cultured Networks of Rat Cortical Neurons Induces Parallel Memory Traces

    le Feber, Joost; Witteveen, Tim; van Veenendaal, Tamar M.; Dijkstra, Jelle


    During systems consolidation, memories are spontaneously replayed favoring information transfer from hippocampus to neocortex. However, at present no empirically supported mechanism to accomplish a transfer of memory from hippocampal to extra-hippocampal sites has been offered. We used cultured neuronal networks on multielectrode arrays and…

  6. Diminished hippocalcin expression in Huntington's disease brain does not account for increased striatal neuron vulnerability as assessed in primary neurons.

    Rudinskiy, Nikita; Kaneko, Yoshio A; Beesen, Ayshe Ana; Gokce, Ozgun; Régulier, Etienne; Déglon, Nicole; Luthi-Carter, Ruth


    Hippocalcin is a neuronal calcium sensor protein previously implicated in regulating neuronal viability and plasticity. Hippocalcin is the most highly expressed neuronal calcium sensor in the medium spiny striatal output neurons that degenerate selectively in Huntington's disease (HD). We have previously shown that decreased hippocalcin expression occurs in parallel with the onset of disease phenotype in mouse models of HD. Here we show by in situ hybridization histochemistry that hippocalcin RNA is also diminished by 63% in human HD brain. These findings lead us to hypothesize that diminished hippocalcin expression might contribute to striatal neurodegeneration in HD. We tested this hypothesis by assessing whether restoration of hippocalcin expression would decrease striatal neurodegeneration in cellular models of HD comprising primary striatal neurons exposed to mutant huntingtin, the mitochondrial toxin 3-nitropropionic acid or an excitotoxic concentration of glutamate. Counter to our hypothesis, hippocalcin expression did not improve the survival of striatal neurons under these conditions. Likewise, expression of hippocalcin together with interactor proteins including the neuronal apoptosis inhibitory protein did not increase the survival of striatal cells in cellular models of HD. These results indicate that diminished hippocalcin expression does not contribute to HD-related neurodegeneration.

  7. Unidirectional signal propagation in primary neurons micropatterned at a single-cell resolution

    Yamamoto, H.; Matsumura, R.; Takaoki, H.; Katsurabayashi, S.; Hirano-Iwata, A.; Niwano, M.


    The structure and connectivity of cultured neuronal networks can be controlled by using micropatterned surfaces. Here, we demonstrate that the direction of signal propagation can be precisely controlled at a single-cell resolution by growing primary neurons on micropatterns. To achieve this, we first examined the process by which axons develop and how synapses form in micropatterned primary neurons using immunocytochemistry. By aligning asymmetric micropatterns with a marginal gap, it was possible to pattern primary neurons with a directed polarization axis at the single-cell level. We then examined how synapses develop on micropatterned hippocampal neurons. Three types of micropatterns with different numbers of short paths for dendrite growth were compared. A normal development in synapse density was observed when micropatterns with three or more short paths were used. Finally, we performed double patch clamp recordings on micropatterned neurons to confirm that these synapses are indeed functional, and that the neuronal signal is transmitted unidirectionally in the intended orientation. This work provides a practical guideline for patterning single neurons to design functional neuronal networks in vitro with the direction of signal propagation being controlled.

  8. Confocal imaging of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors in living cortical neurons.

    Durand, J; Kojic, L; Wang, Y; Lee, P; Cynader, M S; Gu, Q


    The fluorescence-conjugated N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor-selective antagonist, BODIPY-conantokin-G, was employed to label N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors in living neurons derived from the visual cortex of embryonic rats. The fluorescent labeling was visualized and analysed using confocal microscopy and digital imaging techniques. BODIPY-conantokin-G binding sites were homogeneously distributed across somata four days after neurons (E17-20) were placed in culture. In five-day-old cultures, BODIPY-conantokin-G binding sites became clusters of fluorescently labeled spots which were arranged irregularly on somata and proximal neurites. Distal neurites displayed fluorescent labeling after 10-15 days in culture. Displacement experiments showed that spermine and unlabeled conantokin-G compete with BODIPY-conantokin-G labeling at the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor-associated polyamine site. The N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor antagonist 2-amino-5-phosphonovaleric acid also depressed the labeling but with a weaker effect, probably due to interactions occurring between the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor agonist binding site and the polyamine modulatory site. The fluorescent dyes FM 1-43 and FM 4-64 were used in double-labeling studies to compare the distribution of nerve terminals with that of BODIPY-conantokin-G binding sites. BODIPY-conantokin-G binding clusters were associated with presynaptic nerve terminals while isolated BODIPY-conantokin-G binding sites were not always opposed to terminals. The aggregation of receptors to form clusters may lead to the functional formation of excitatory synapses. To investigate whether modulation of membrane potentials affected the formation of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor clusters, cultured neurons were chronically treated for a week with either tetrodotoxin (to block membrane action potentials) or a high concentration of potassium to depolarize the membrane. While neurons in the tetrodotoxin-treated group showed a similar number of

  9. Autophagy activation is involved in 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine ('ecstasy'--induced neurotoxicity in cultured cortical neurons.

    I-Hsun Li

    Full Text Available Autophagic (type II cell death, characterized by the massive accumulation of autophagic vacuoles in the cytoplasm of cells, has been suggested to play pathogenetic roles in cerebral ischemia, brain trauma, and neurodegenerative disorders. 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA or ecstasy is an illicit drug causing long-term neurotoxicity in the brain. Apoptotic (type I and necrotic (type III cell death have been implicated in MDMA-induced neurotoxicity, while the role of autophagy in MDMA-elicited neurotoxicity has not been investigated. The present study aimed to evaluate the occurrence and contribution of autophagy to neurotoxicity in cultured rat cortical neurons challenged with MDMA. Autophagy activation was monitored by expression of microtubule-associated protein 1 light chain 3 (LC3; an autophagic marker using immunofluorescence and western blot analysis. Here, we demonstrate that MDMA exposure induced monodansylcadaverine (MDC- and LC3B-densely stained autophagosome formation and increased conversion of LC3B-I to LC3B-II, coinciding with the neurodegenerative phase of MDMA challenge. Autophagy inhibitor 3-methyladenine (3-MA pretreatment significantly attenuated MDMA-induced autophagosome accumulation, LC3B-II expression, and ameliorated MDMA-triggered neurite damage and neuronal death. In contrast, enhanced autophagy flux by rapamycin or impaired autophagosome clearance by bafilomycin A1 led to more autophagosome accumulation in neurons and aggravated neurite degeneration, indicating that excessive autophagosome accumulation contributes to MDMA-induced neurotoxicity. Furthermore, MDMA induced phosphorylation of AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK and its downstream unc-51-like kinase 1 (ULK1, suggesting the AMPK/ULK1 signaling pathway might be involved in MDMA-induced autophagy activation.

  10. BDNF stimulation of protein synthesis in cortical neurons requires the MAP kinase-interacting kinase MNK1.

    Genheden, Maja; Kenney, Justin W; Johnston, Harvey E; Manousopoulou, Antigoni; Garbis, Spiros D; Proud, Christopher G


    Although the MAP kinase-interacting kinases (MNKs) have been known for >15 years, their roles in the regulation of protein synthesis have remained obscure. Here, we explore the involvement of the MNKs in brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF)-stimulated protein synthesis in cortical neurons from mice. Using a combination of pharmacological and genetic approaches, we show that BDNF-induced upregulation of protein synthesis requires MEK/ERK signaling and the downstream kinase, MNK1, which phosphorylates eukaryotic initiation factor (eIF) 4E. Translation initiation is mediated by the interaction of eIF4E with the m(7)GTP cap of mRNA and with eIF4G. The latter interaction is inhibited by the interactions of eIF4E with partner proteins, such as CYFIP1, which acts as a translational repressor. We find that BDNF induces the release of CYFIP1 from eIF4E, and that this depends on MNK1. Finally, using a novel combination of BONCAT and SILAC, we identify a subset of proteins whose synthesis is upregulated by BDNF signaling via MNK1 in neurons. Interestingly, this subset of MNK1-sensitive proteins is enriched for functions involved in neurotransmission and synaptic plasticity. Additionally, we find significant overlap between our subset of proteins whose synthesis is regulated by MNK1 and those encoded by known FMRP-binding mRNAs. Together, our data implicate MNK1 as a key component of BDNF-mediated translational regulation in neurons.

  11. Demonstrating Ipsilateral Cortical Connectivity with Lower-Limb Spinal Motor Neurons

    Daniel, Janan


    Full Text Available This research was done for the Summer Internship in Neural Engineering (SINE during a three month period, June 2008 until the end of August 2008. The SINE program is affiliated with the Sensory Motor Performance Program (SMPP at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (RIC and the Biomedical Engineering program at Northwestern University. I worked in the Neuralplasticity laboratory, which is a part of the SMPP located at the RIC. I worked under Dr. Stinear and Dr. Madhavan to test protocols developed by my advisors as candidate techniques for demonstrating ipsilateral connectivity between the lower limb motor cortex and spinal motor neurons. The goal of the research was to develop a candidate stimulation protocol to demonstrate ipsilateral connectivity in stroke patients between the lower limb motor cortex and spinal motor neurons.

  12. Retrosplenial Cortical Neurons Encode Navigational Cues, Trajectories and Reward Locations During Goal Directed Navigation.

    Vedder, Lindsey C; Miller, Adam M P; Harrison, Marc B; Smith, David M


    The retrosplenial cortex (RSC) plays an important role in memory and spatial navigation. It shares functional similarities with the hippocampus, including the presence of place fields and lesion-induced impairments in spatial navigation, and the RSC is an important source of visual-spatial input to the hippocampus. Recently, the RSC has been the target of intense scrutiny among investigators of human memory and navigation. fMRI and lesion data suggest an RSC role in the ability to use landmarks to navigate to goal locations. However, no direct neurophysiological evidence of encoding navigational cues has been reported so the specific RSC contribution to spatial cognition has been uncertain. To examine this, we trained rats on a T-maze task in which the reward location was explicitly cued by a flashing light and we recorded RSC neurons as the rats learned. We found that RSC neurons rapidly encoded the light cue. Additionally, RSC neurons encoded the reward and its location, and they showed distinct firing patterns along the left and right trajectories to the goal. These responses may provide key information for goal-directed navigation, and the loss of these signals may underlie navigational impairments in subjects with RSC damage.

  13. A distinct response to endogenous DNA damage in the development of Nbs1-deficient cortical neurons

    Rui Li; Yun-Gui Yang; Yunzhou Gao; Zhao-Qi Wang; Wei-Min Tong


    Microcephaly is a clinical characteristic for human nijmegen breakage syndrome (NBS,mutated in NBS1 gene),a chromosomal instability syndrome.However,the underlying molecular pathogenesis remains elusive.In the present study,we demonstrate that neuronal disruption ofNBS (Nbn in mice) causes microcephaly characterized by the reduction of cerebral cortex and corpus cailosum,recapitulating neuronal anomalies in human NBS.Nbs1-deficient neocortex shows accumulative endogenous DNA damage and defective activation ofAtaxia telangiectasia and Rad3-related (ATR)-Chk1 pathway upon DNA damage.Notably,in contrast to massive apoptotic cell death in Nbs1-deficient cerebella,activation of p53 leads to a defective neuroprogenitor proliferation in neocortex,likely via specific persistent induction of hematopoietic zinc finger (Hzf) that preferentially promotes p53-mediated cell cycle arrest whilst inhibiting apoptosis.Moreover,Trp53 mutations substantially rescue the microcephaly in Nbs1-deficient mice.Thus,the present results reveal the first clue that developing neurons at different regions of brain selectively respond to endogenous DNA damage,and underscore an important role for Nbs1 in neurogenesis.