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Sample records for specific functional neurons

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

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Lu Li

    2017-01-01

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

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

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    Firnhaber, Christopher; Hammarlund, Marc

    2013-11-01

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

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

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

    2017-08-01

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

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

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

    2002-01-01

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

  5. Neuronal survival in the brain: neuron type-specific mechanisms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pfisterer, Ulrich Gottfried; Khodosevich, Konstantin

    2017-01-01

    Neurogenic regions of mammalian brain produce many more neurons that will eventually survive and reach a mature stage. Developmental cell death affects both embryonically produced immature neurons and those immature neurons that are generated in regions of adult neurogenesis. Removal of substantial...... numbers of neurons that are not yet completely integrated into the local circuits helps to ensure that maturation and homeostatic function of neuronal networks in the brain proceed correctly. External signals from brain microenvironment together with intrinsic signaling pathways determine whether...... for survival in a certain brain region. This review focuses on how immature neurons survive during normal and impaired brain development, both in the embryonic/neonatal brain and in brain regions associated with adult neurogenesis, and emphasizes neuron type-specific mechanisms that help to survive for various...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leon French

    2017-05-01

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

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

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

    2016-12-01

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

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

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

    2016-04-19

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

  9. Species-Specific Mechanisms of Neuron Subtype Specification Reveal Evolutionary Plasticity of Amniote Brain Development

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    Tadashi Nomura

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Summary: Highly ordered brain architectures in vertebrates consist of multiple neuron subtypes with specific neuronal connections. However, the origin of and evolutionary changes in neuron specification mechanisms remain unclear. Here, we report that regulatory mechanisms of neuron subtype specification are divergent in developing amniote brains. In the mammalian neocortex, the transcription factors (TFs Ctip2 and Satb2 are differentially expressed in layer-specific neurons. In contrast, these TFs are co-localized in reptilian and avian dorsal pallial neurons. Multi-potential progenitors that produce distinct neuronal subtypes commonly exist in the reptilian and avian dorsal pallium, whereas a cis-regulatory element of avian Ctip2 exhibits attenuated transcription suppressive activity. Furthermore, the neuronal subtypes distinguished by these TFs are not tightly associated with conserved neuronal connections among amniotes. Our findings reveal the evolutionary plasticity of regulatory gene functions that contribute to species differences in neuronal heterogeneity and connectivity in developing amniote brains. : Neuronal heterogeneity is essential for assembling intricate neuronal circuits. Nomura et al. find that species-specific transcriptional mechanisms underlie diversities of excitatory neuron subtypes in mammalian and non-mammalian brains. Species differences in neuronal subtypes and connections suggest functional plasticity of regulatory genes for neuronal specification during amniote brain evolution. Keywords: Ctip2, Satb2, multi-potential progenitors, transcriptional regulation, neuronal connectivity

  10. High-resolution labeling and functional manipulation of specific neuron types in mouse brain by Cre-activated viral gene expression.

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    Sandra J Kuhlman

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available We describe a method that combines Cre-recombinase knockin mice and viral-mediated gene transfer to genetically label and functionally manipulate specific neuron types in the mouse brain. We engineered adeno-associated viruses (AAVs that express GFP, dsRedExpress, or channelrhodopsin (ChR2 upon Cre/loxP recombination-mediated removal of a transcription-translation STOP cassette. Fluorescent labeling was sufficient to visualize neuronal structures with synaptic resolution in vivo, and ChR2 expression allowed light activation of neuronal spiking. The structural dynamics of a specific class of neocortical neuron, the parvalbumin-containing (Pv fast-spiking GABAergic interneuron, was monitored over the course of a week. We found that although the majority of Pv axonal boutons were stable in young adults, bouton additions and subtractions on axonal shafts were readily observed at a rate of 10.10% and 9.47%, respectively, over 7 days. Our results indicate that Pv inhibitory circuits maintain the potential for structural re-wiring in post-adolescent cortex. With the generation of an increasing number of Cre knockin mice and because viral transfection can be delivered to defined brain regions at defined developmental stages, this strategy represents a general method to systematically visualize the structure and manipulate the function of different cell types in the mouse brain.

  11. Serum Neuron-Specific Enolase, Biogenic Amino-Acids and Neurobehavioral Function in Lead-Exposed Workers from Lead-Acid Battery Manufacturing Process

    OpenAIRE

    K Ravibabu; T Barman; HR Rajmohan

    2015-01-01

    Background: The interaction between serum neuron-specific enolase (NSE), biogenic amino-acids and neurobehavioral function with blood lead levels in workers exposed to lead form lead-acid battery manufacturing process was not studied. Objective: To evaluate serum NSE and biogenic amino-acids (dopamine and serotonin) levels, and neurobehavioral performance among workers exposed to lead from lead-acid storage battery plant, and its relation with blood lead levels (BLLs). Methods: In a c...

  12. Down-regulation of A-type potassium channel in gastric-specific DRG neurons in a rat model of functional dyspepsia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, S; Chen, J D Z

    2014-07-01

    Although without evidence of organic structural abnormalities, pain or discomfort is a prominent symptom of functional dyspepsia and considered to reflect visceral hypersensitivity whose underlying mechanism is poorly understood. Here, we studied electrophysiological properties and expression of voltage-gated potassium channels in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons in a rat model of functional dyspepsia induced by neonatal gastric irritation. Male Sprague-Dawley rat pups at 10-day old received 0.1% iodoacetamide (IA) or vehicle by oral gavage for 6 days and studied at adulthood. Retrograde tracer-labeled gastric-specific T8 -T12 DRG neurons were harvested for the patch-clamp study in voltage and current-clamp modes and protein expression of K(+) channel in T8 -T12 DRGs was examined by western blotting. (1) Gastric specific but not non-gastric DRG neurons showed an enhanced excitability in neonatal IA-treated rats compared to the control: depolarized resting membrane potentials, a lower current threshold for action potential (AP) activation, and an increase in the number of APs in response to current stimulation. (2) The current density of tetraethylammonium insensitive (transiently inactivating A-type current), but not the tetraethylammonium sensitive (slow-inactivating delayed rectifier K(+) currents), was significantly smaller in IA-treated rats (65.4 ± 6.9 pA/pF), compared to that of control (93.1 ± 8.3 pA/pF). (3) Protein expression of KV 4.3 was down-regulated in IA-treated rats. A-type potassium channels are significantly down-regulated in the gastric-specific DRG neurons in adult rats with mild neonatal gastric irritation, which in part contribute to the enhanced DRG neuron excitabilities that leads to the development of gastric hypersensitivity. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  13. Mirror neurons: from origin to function.

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

    2014-04-01

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

  14. Subset specification of central serotonergic neurons

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    Marten P Smidt

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available The last decade the serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine; 5-HT system has received enormous attention due to its role in regulation of behavior, exemplified by the discovery that increased 5-HT tone in the central nervous system is able to alleviate affective disorders. Here, we review the developmental processes, with a special emphasis on subset specification, leading to the formation of the 5-HT system in the brain. Molecular classification of 5-HT neuronal groups leads to the definition of two independent rostral groups positioned in rhombomere 1 and 2/3 and a caudal group in rhombomere 5-8. In addition, more disperse refinement of these subsets is present as shown by the selective expression of the 5-HT1A autoreceptor, indicating functional diversity between 5-HT subsets. The functional significance of the molecular coding differences is not well known and the molecular basis of described specific connectivity patterns remain to be elucidated. Recent developments in genetic lineage tracing models will provide these data and form a major step-up towards the full understanding of the importance of developmental programming and function of 5-HT neuronal subsets.

  15. Expression of Rac1 alternative 3' UTRs is a cell specific mechanism with a function in dendrite outgrowth in cortical neurons.

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    Braz, Sandra Oliveira; Cruz, Andrea; Lobo, Andrea; Bravo, Joana; Moreira-Ribeiro, Joana; Pereira-Castro, Isabel; Freitas, Jaime; Relvas, Joao B; Summavielle, Teresa; Moreira, Alexandra

    2017-06-01

    The differential expression of mRNAs containing tandem alternative 3' UTRs, achieved by mechanisms of alternative polyadenylation and post-transcriptional regulation, has been correlated with a variety of cellular states. In differentiated cells and brain tissues there is a general use of distal polyadenylation signals, originating mRNAs with longer 3' UTRs, in contrast with proliferating cells and other tissues such as testis, where most mRNAs contain shorter 3' UTRs. Although cell type and state are relevant in many biological processes, how these mechanisms occur in specific brain cell types is still poorly understood. Rac1 is a member of the Rho family of small GTPases with essential roles in multiple cellular processes, including cell differentiation and axonal growth. Here we used different brain cell types and tissues, including oligodendrocytes, microglia, astrocytes, cortical and hippocampal neurons, and optical nerve, to show that classical Rho GTPases express mRNAs with alternative 3' UTRs differently, by gene- and cell- specific mechanisms. In particular, we show that Rac1 originate mRNA isoforms with longer 3' UTRs specifically during neurite growth of cortical, but not hippocampal neurons. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the longest Rac1 3' UTR is necessary for driving the mRNA to the neurites, and also for neurite outgrowth in cortical neurons. Our results indicate that the expression of Rac1 longer 3' UTR is a gene and cell-type specific mechanism in the brain, with a new physiological function in cortical neuron differentiation. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Altered Intrinsic Pyramidal Neuron Properties and Pathway-Specific Synaptic Dysfunction Underlie Aberrant Hippocampal Network Function in a Mouse Model of Tauopathy.

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    Booth, Clair A; Witton, Jonathan; Nowacki, Jakub; Tsaneva-Atanasova, Krasimira; Jones, Matthew W; Randall, Andrew D; Brown, Jonathan T

    2016-01-13

    The formation and deposition of tau protein aggregates is proposed to contribute to cognitive impairments in dementia by disrupting neuronal function in brain regions, including the hippocampus. We used a battery of in vivo and in vitro electrophysiological recordings in the rTg4510 transgenic mouse model, which overexpresses a mutant form of human tau protein, to investigate the effects of tau pathology on hippocampal neuronal function in area CA1 of 7- to 8-month-old mice, an age point at which rTg4510 animals exhibit advanced tau pathology and progressive neurodegeneration. In vitro recordings revealed shifted theta-frequency resonance properties of CA1 pyramidal neurons, deficits in synaptic transmission at Schaffer collateral synapses, and blunted plasticity and imbalanced inhibition at temporoammonic synapses. These changes were associated with aberrant CA1 network oscillations, pyramidal neuron bursting, and spatial information coding in vivo. Our findings relate tauopathy-associated changes in cellular neurophysiology to altered behavior-dependent network function. Dementia is characterized by the loss of learning and memory ability. The deposition of tau protein aggregates in the brain is a pathological hallmark of dementia; and the hippocampus, a brain structure known to be critical in processing learning and memory, is one of the first and most heavily affected regions. Our results show that, in area CA1 of hippocampus, a region involved in spatial learning and memory, tau pathology is associated with specific disturbances in synaptic, cellular, and network-level function, culminating in the aberrant encoding of spatial information and spatial memory impairment. These studies identify several novel ways in which hippocampal information processing may be disrupted in dementia, which may provide targets for future therapeutic intervention. Copyright © 2016 Booth, Witton et al.

  17. A splice acceptor mutation in C. elegans daf-19/Rfx disrupts functional specialization of male-specific ciliated neurons but does not affect ciliogenesis.

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    Wells, Kristen L; Rowneki, Mazhgan; Killian, Darrell J

    2015-04-01

    RFX transcription factors are master regulators of ciliogenesis in diverse animal species. The sole Caenorhabditis elegans RFX homolog, DAF-19, plays at least two roles in the formation of functional cilia. The DAF-19(C) isoform is required for ciliogenesis and the DAF-19(M) isoform is required for the functional specialization of a subset of male-specific ciliated neurons called PKD neurons. Here we report the identification of a novel mutation, daf-19(sm129), which disrupts the functional specification of PKD neurons and thus suggests that daf-19m activity is compromised. However, ciliogenesis is not disrupted in daf-19(sm129) mutants suggesting that daf-19c activity is retained. The sm129 mutation disrupts a splice acceptor site adjacent to an exon common to the daf-19c and daf-19m isoforms resulting in aberrant splicing in a proportion of transcripts. While aberrant splicing of daf-19c to upstream cryptic sites results in in-frame and functional products, a large proportion of daf-19m mRNAs include the entire upstream intron, which introduces a frameshift and stop codons. At least 15% of disease-causing mutations affect splicing of the gene bearing the mutation, thus it is important to understand the consequences of splice site mutations on gene function. However, predicting the effects of a splice site mutation remains difficult and experimental determination is still required. Using daf-19(sm129) as a model, our results suggest that this problem is exacerbated when a splice acceptor mutation is used by multiple isoforms of the same gene because the effects on each isoform can be dramatically different. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Mirror neurons: functions, mechanisms and models.

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

    2013-04-12

    Mirror neurons for manipulation fire both when the animal manipulates an object in a specific way and when it sees another animal (or the experimenter) perform an action that is more or less similar. Such neurons were originally found in macaque monkeys, in the ventral premotor cortex, area F5 and later also in the inferior parietal lobule. Recent neuroimaging data indicate that the adult human brain is endowed with a "mirror neuron system," putatively containing mirror neurons and other neurons, for matching the observation and execution of actions. Mirror neurons may serve action recognition in monkeys as well as humans, whereas their putative role in imitation and language may be realized in human but not in monkey. This article shows the important role of computational models in providing sufficient and causal explanations for the observed phenomena involving mirror systems and the learning processes which form them, and underlines the need for additional circuitry to lift up the monkey mirror neuron circuit to sustain the posited cognitive functions attributed to the human mirror neuron system. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Serum neuron-specific enolase, biogenic amino-acids and neurobehavioral function in lead-exposed workers from lead-acid battery manufacturing process.

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    Ravibabu, K; Barman, T; Rajmohan, H R

    2015-01-01

    The interaction between serum neuron-specific enolase (NSE), biogenic amino-acids and neurobehavioral function with blood lead levels in workers exposed to lead form lead-acid battery manufacturing process was not studied. To evaluate serum NSE and biogenic amino-acids (dopamine and serotonin) levels, and neurobehavioral performance among workers exposed to lead from lead-acid storage battery plant, and its relation with blood lead levels (BLLs). In a cross-sectional study, we performed biochemical and neurobehavioral function tests on 146 workers exposed to lead from lead-acid battery manufacturing process. BLLs were assessed by an atomic absorption spectrophotometer. Serum NSE, dopamine and serotonin were measured by ELISA. Neurobehavioral functions were assessed by CDC-recommended tests---simple reaction time (SRT), symbol digit substitution test (SDST), and serial digit learning test (SDLT). There was a significant correlation (r 0.199, pSDLT and SRT had also a significant positive correlation (r 0.238, p<0.01). NSE had a negative correlation (r -0.194, p<0.05) with serotonin level. Multiple linear regression analysis revealed that both SRT and SDST had positive significant associations with BLL. SRT also had a positive significant association with age. Serum NSE cannot be used as a marker for BLL. The only domain of neurobehavioral function tests that is affected by increased BLL in workers of lead-acid battery manufacturing process is that of the "attention and perception" (SDST).

  20. Serum Neuron-Specific Enolase, Biogenic Amino-Acids and Neurobehavioral Function in Lead-Exposed Workers from Lead-Acid Battery Manufacturing Process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K Ravibabu

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: The interaction between serum neuron-specific enolase (NSE, biogenic amino-acids and neurobehavioral function with blood lead levels in workers exposed to lead form lead-acid battery manufacturing process was not studied. Objective: To evaluate serum NSE and biogenic amino-acids (dopamine and serotonin levels, and neurobehavioral performance among workers exposed to lead from lead-acid storage battery plant, and its relation with blood lead levels (BLLs. Methods: In a cross-sectional study, we performed biochemical and neurobehavioral function tests on 146 workers exposed to lead from lead-acid battery manufacturing process. BLLs were assessed by an atomic absorption spectrophotometer. Serum NSE, dopamine and serotonin were measured by ELISA. Neurobehavioral functions were assessed by CDC-recommended tests—simple reaction time (SRT, symbol digit substitution test (SDST, and serial digit learning test (SDLT. Results: There was a significant correlation (r 0.199, p<0.05 between SDST and BLL. SDLT and SRT had also a significant positive correlation (r 0.238, p<0.01. NSE had a negative correlation (r –0.194, p<0.05 with serotonin level. Multiple linear regression analysis revealed that both SRT and SDST had positive significant associations with BLL. SRT also had a positive significant association with age. Conclusion: Serum NSE cannot be used as a marker for BLL. The only domain of neurobehavioral function tests that is affected by increased BLL in workers of lead-acid battery manufacturing process is that of the “attention and perception” (SDST.

  1. Modeling task-specific neuronal ensembles improves decoding of grasp

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    Smith, Ryan J.; Soares, Alcimar B.; Rouse, Adam G.; Schieber, Marc H.; Thakor, Nitish V.

    2018-06-01

    Objective. Dexterous movement involves the activation and coordination of networks of neuronal populations across multiple cortical regions. Attempts to model firing of individual neurons commonly treat the firing rate as directly modulating with motor behavior. However, motor behavior may additionally be associated with modulations in the activity and functional connectivity of neurons in a broader ensemble. Accounting for variations in neural ensemble connectivity may provide additional information about the behavior being performed. Approach. In this study, we examined neural ensemble activity in primary motor cortex (M1) and premotor cortex (PM) of two male rhesus monkeys during performance of a center-out reach, grasp and manipulate task. We constructed point process encoding models of neuronal firing that incorporated task-specific variations in the baseline firing rate as well as variations in functional connectivity with the neural ensemble. Models were evaluated both in terms of their encoding capabilities and their ability to properly classify the grasp being performed. Main results. Task-specific ensemble models correctly predicted the performed grasp with over 95% accuracy and were shown to outperform models of neuronal activity that assume only a variable baseline firing rate. Task-specific ensemble models exhibited superior decoding performance in 82% of units in both monkeys (p  <  0.01). Inclusion of ensemble activity also broadly improved the ability of models to describe observed spiking. Encoding performance of task-specific ensemble models, measured by spike timing predictability, improved upon baseline models in 62% of units. Significance. These results suggest that additional discriminative information about motor behavior found in the variations in functional connectivity of neuronal ensembles located in motor-related cortical regions is relevant to decode complex tasks such as grasping objects, and may serve the basis for more

  2. Development of raphe serotonin neurons from specification to guidance.

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    Kiyasova, Vera; Gaspar, Patricia

    2011-11-01

    The main features of the development of the serotonin (5-HT) raphe neurons have been known for many years but more recent molecular studies, using mouse genetics, have since unveiled several intriguing aspects of the specification of the raphe serotonergic system. These studies indicated that, although all 5-HT neurons in the raphe follow the same general program for their specification, there are also clear regional differences in the way that these neurons are specified and are guided towards different brain targets. Here we overview recent progress made in the understanding of the developmental programming of serotonergic neurons in the mouse raphe, emphasizing data showing how heterogeneous subsets of 5-HT neurons may be generated. Serotonergic progenitors are produced in the brainstem in different rhombomeres under the influence of a set of secreted factors, sonic hedgehog and fibroblast growth factors, which determine their position in the neural tube. Two main transcriptional gene networks are involved in the specification of 5-HT identity, with Lmx1b and Pet1 transcription factors as main players. A differential requirement for Pet1 was, however, revealed, which underlies an anatomical and functional diversity. Transcriptional programs controlling 5-HT identity could also impact axon guidance mechanisms directing 5-HT neurons to their targets. Although no direct links have yet been established, a large set of molecular determinants have already been shown to be involved in the growth, axon guidance and targeting of 5-HT raphe neurons, particularly within the forebrain. Alterations in the molecular mechanisms involved in 5-HT development are likely to have significant roles in mood disease predisposition. © 2011 The Authors. European Journal of Neuroscience © 2011 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-03-01

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

  4. The neuron identity problem: form meets function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fishell, Gord; Heintz, Nathaniel

    2013-10-30

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

  5. Mirror neurons: From origin to function

    OpenAIRE

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

    2014-01-01

    This article argues that mirror neurons originate in sensorimotor associative learning and therefore a new approach is needed to investigate their functions. Mirror neurons were discovered about 20 years ago in the monkey brain, and there is now evidence that they are also present in the human brain. The intriguing feature of many mirror neurons is that they fire not only when the animal is performing an action, such as grasping an object using a power grip, but also when the animal passively...

  6. Functional circuits of new neurons in the dentate gyrus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carmen eVivar

    2013-02-01

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

  7. Interaction function of coupled bursting neurons

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shi Xia; Zhang Jiadong

    2016-01-01

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

  8. Zebrafish transgenic constructs label specific neurons in Xenopus laevis spinal cord and identify frog V0v spinal neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juárez-Morales, José L; Martinez-De Luna, Reyna I; Zuber, Michael E; Roberts, Alan; Lewis, Katharine E

    2017-09-01

    A correctly functioning spinal cord is crucial for locomotion and communication between body and brain but there are fundamental gaps in our knowledge of how spinal neuronal circuitry is established and functions. To understand the genetic program that regulates specification and functions of this circuitry, we need to connect neuronal molecular phenotypes with physiological analyses. Studies using Xenopus laevis tadpoles have increased our understanding of spinal cord neuronal physiology and function, particularly in locomotor circuitry. However, the X. laevis tetraploid genome and long generation time make it difficult to investigate how neurons are specified. The opacity of X. laevis embryos also makes it hard to connect functional classes of neurons and the genes that they express. We demonstrate here that Tol2 transgenic constructs using zebrafish enhancers that drive expression in specific zebrafish spinal neurons label equivalent neurons in X. laevis and that the incorporation of a Gal4:UAS amplification cassette enables cells to be observed in live X. laevis tadpoles. This technique should enable the molecular phenotypes, morphologies and physiologies of distinct X. laevis spinal neurons to be examined together in vivo. We have used an islet1 enhancer to label Rohon-Beard sensory neurons and evx enhancers to identify V0v neurons, for the first time, in X. laevis spinal cord. Our work demonstrates the homology of spinal cord circuitry in zebrafish and X. laevis, suggesting that future work could combine their relative strengths to elucidate a more complete picture of how vertebrate spinal cord neurons are specified, and function to generate behavior. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Develop Neurobiol 77: 1007-1020, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-01-01

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

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zeitler-Geurds, M.

    2010-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spencer, William C; Deneris, Evan S

    2017-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas R Cheever

    2011-03-01

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

  13. Toward functional classification of neuronal types.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharpee, Tatyana O

    2014-09-17

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fomina Alla F

    2008-09-01

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

  15. The transfer function of neuron spike.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-08-01

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

  16. Modeling the Development of Goal-Specificity in Mirror Neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thill, Serge; Svensson, Henrik; Ziemke, Tom

    2011-12-01

    Neurophysiological studies have shown that parietal mirror neurons encode not only actions but also the goal of these actions. Although some mirror neurons will fire whenever a certain action is perceived (goal-independently), most will only fire if the motion is perceived as part of an action with a specific goal. This result is important for the action-understanding hypothesis as it provides a potential neurological basis for such a cognitive ability. It is also relevant for the design of artificial cognitive systems, in particular robotic systems that rely on computational models of the mirror system in their interaction with other agents. Yet, to date, no computational model has explicitly addressed the mechanisms that give rise to both goal-specific and goal-independent parietal mirror neurons. In the present paper, we present a computational model based on a self-organizing map, which receives artificial inputs representing information about both the observed or executed actions and the context in which they were executed. We show that the map develops a biologically plausible organization in which goal-specific mirror neurons emerge. We further show that the fundamental cause for both the appearance and the number of goal-specific neurons can be found in geometric relationships between the different inputs to the map. The results are important to the action-understanding hypothesis as they provide a mechanism for the emergence of goal-specific parietal mirror neurons and lead to a number of predictions: (1) Learning of new goals may mostly reassign existing goal-specific neurons rather than recruit new ones; (2) input differences between executed and observed actions can explain observed corresponding differences in the number of goal-specific neurons; and (3) the percentage of goal-specific neurons may differ between motion primitives.

  17. Simultaneous neuron- and astrocyte-specific fluorescent marking

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schulze, Wiebke [Laboratory of Molecular Neuropharmacology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Osaka University, 1-6 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Hayata-Takano, Atsuko [Molecular Research Center for Children' s Mental Development, United Graduate School of Child Development, Osaka University, Kanazawa University, Hamamatsu University School of Medicine, Chiba University and University of Fukui, 2-2 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Kamo, Toshihiko [Laboratory of Molecular Neuropharmacology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Osaka University, 1-6 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Nakazawa, Takanobu, E-mail: takanobunakazawa-tky@umin.ac.jp [iPS Cell-based Research Project on Brain Neuropharmacology and Toxicology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Osaka University, 1-6 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Nagayasu, Kazuki [iPS Cell-based Research Project on Brain Neuropharmacology and Toxicology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Osaka University, 1-6 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Kasai, Atsushi; Seiriki, Kaoru [Laboratory of Molecular Neuropharmacology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Osaka University, 1-6 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Interdisciplinary Program for Biomedical Sciences, Institute for Academic Initiatives, Osaka University, 1-1 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Shintani, Norihito [Laboratory of Molecular Neuropharmacology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Osaka University, 1-6 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Ago, Yukio [Laboratory of Medicinal Pharmacology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Osaka University, 1-6 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); Farfan, Camille [Laboratory of Molecular Neuropharmacology, Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Osaka University, 1-6 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka 565-0871 (Japan); and others

    2015-03-27

    Systematic and simultaneous analysis of multiple cell types in the brain is becoming important, but such tools have not yet been adequately developed. Here, we aimed to generate a method for the specific fluorescent labeling of neurons and astrocytes, two major cell types in the brain, and we have developed lentiviral vectors to express the red fluorescent protein tdTomato in neurons and the enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) in astrocytes. Importantly, both fluorescent proteins are fused to histone 2B protein (H2B) to confer nuclear localization to distinguish between single cells. We also constructed several expression constructs, including a tandem alignment of the neuron- and astrocyte-expression cassettes for simultaneous labeling. Introducing these vectors and constructs in vitro and in vivo resulted in cell type-specific and nuclear-localized fluorescence signals enabling easy detection and distinguishability of neurons and astrocytes. This tool is expected to be utilized for the simultaneous analysis of changes in neurons and astrocytes in healthy and diseased brains. - Highlights: • We develop a method for the specific fluorescent labeling of neurons and astrocytes. • Neuron-specific labeling is achieved using Scg10 and synapsin promoters. • Astrocyte-specific labeling is generated using the minimal GFAP promoter. • Nuclear localization of fluorescent proteins is achieved with histone 2B protein.

  18. Simultaneous neuron- and astrocyte-specific fluorescent marking

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schulze, Wiebke; Hayata-Takano, Atsuko; Kamo, Toshihiko; Nakazawa, Takanobu; Nagayasu, Kazuki; Kasai, Atsushi; Seiriki, Kaoru; Shintani, Norihito; Ago, Yukio; Farfan, Camille

    2015-01-01

    Systematic and simultaneous analysis of multiple cell types in the brain is becoming important, but such tools have not yet been adequately developed. Here, we aimed to generate a method for the specific fluorescent labeling of neurons and astrocytes, two major cell types in the brain, and we have developed lentiviral vectors to express the red fluorescent protein tdTomato in neurons and the enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) in astrocytes. Importantly, both fluorescent proteins are fused to histone 2B protein (H2B) to confer nuclear localization to distinguish between single cells. We also constructed several expression constructs, including a tandem alignment of the neuron- and astrocyte-expression cassettes for simultaneous labeling. Introducing these vectors and constructs in vitro and in vivo resulted in cell type-specific and nuclear-localized fluorescence signals enabling easy detection and distinguishability of neurons and astrocytes. This tool is expected to be utilized for the simultaneous analysis of changes in neurons and astrocytes in healthy and diseased brains. - Highlights: • We develop a method for the specific fluorescent labeling of neurons and astrocytes. • Neuron-specific labeling is achieved using Scg10 and synapsin promoters. • Astrocyte-specific labeling is generated using the minimal GFAP promoter. • Nuclear localization of fluorescent proteins is achieved with histone 2B protein

  19. Developmental wiring of specific neurons is regulated by RET-1/Nogo-A in Caenorhabditis elegans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Torpe, Nanna; Nørgaard, Steffen; Høye, Anette M.

    2017-01-01

    Nogo-A is a membrane-bound protein that functions to inhibit neuronal migration, adhesion, and neurite outgrowth during development. In the mature nervous system, Nogo-A stabilizes neuronal wiring to inhibit neuronal plasticity and regeneration after injury. Here, we show that RET-1, the sole Nog...... present a previously unidentified function for RET-1 in the nervous system of C. elegans.......-A homolog in Caenorhabditis elegans, is required to control developmental wiring of a specific subset of neurons. In ret-1 deletion mutant animals, specific ventral nerve cord axons are misguided where they fail to respect the ventral midline boundary. We found that ret-1 is expressed in multiple neurons...

  20. Magnocellular Neurons and Posterior Pituitary Function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Colin H

    2016-09-15

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

  1. Identifying specific prefrontal neurons that contribute to autism-associated abnormalities in physiology and social behavior

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brumback, A C; Ellwood, I T; Kjaerby, C

    2017-01-01

    Functional imaging and gene expression studies both implicate the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC), particularly deep-layer projection neurons, as a potential locus for autism pathology. Here, we explored how specific deep-layer prefrontal neurons contribute to abnormal physiology and behavior...... in mouse models of autism. First, we find that across three etiologically distinct models-in utero valproic acid (VPA) exposure, CNTNAP2 knockout and FMR1 knockout-layer 5 subcortically projecting (SC) neurons consistently exhibit reduced input resistance and action potential firing. To explore how altered...... SC neuron physiology might impact behavior, we took advantage of the fact that in deep layers of the mPFC, dopamine D2 receptors (D2Rs) are mainly expressed by SC neurons, and used D2-Cre mice to label D2R+ neurons for calcium imaging or optogenetics. We found that social exploration preferentially...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meng-Lu Liu

    2016-01-01

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

  3. Hypocretin neuron-specific transcriptome profiling identifies the sleep modulator Kcnh4a.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yelin-Bekerman, Laura; Elbaz, Idan; Diber, Alex; Dahary, Dvir; Gibbs-Bar, Liron; Alon, Shahar; Lerer-Goldshtein, Tali; Appelbaum, Lior

    2015-10-01

    Sleep has been conserved throughout evolution; however, the molecular and neuronal mechanisms of sleep are largely unknown. The hypothalamic hypocretin/orexin (Hcrt) neurons regulate sleep\\wake states, feeding, stress, and reward. To elucidate the mechanism that enables these various functions and to identify sleep regulators, we combined fluorescence cell sorting and RNA-seq in hcrt:EGFP zebrafish. Dozens of Hcrt-neuron-specific transcripts were identified and comprehensive high-resolution imaging revealed gene-specific localization in all or subsets of Hcrt neurons. Clusters of Hcrt-neuron-specific genes are predicted to be regulated by shared transcription factors. These findings show that Hcrt neurons are heterogeneous and that integrative molecular mechanisms orchestrate their diverse functions. The voltage-gated potassium channel Kcnh4a, which is expressed in all Hcrt neurons, was silenced by the CRISPR-mediated gene inactivation system. The mutant kcnh4a (kcnh4a(-/-)) larvae showed reduced sleep time and consolidation, specifically during the night, suggesting that Kcnh4a regulates sleep.

  4. Target-specific M1 inputs to infragranular S1 pyramidal neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fanselow, Erika E.; Simons, Daniel J.

    2016-01-01

    The functional role of input from the primary motor cortex (M1) to primary somatosensory cortex (S1) is unclear; one key to understanding this pathway may lie in elucidating the cell-type specific microcircuits that connect S1 and M1. Recently, we discovered that a subset of pyramidal neurons in the infragranular layers of S1 receive especially strong input from M1 (Kinnischtzke AK, Simons DJ, Fanselow EE. Cereb Cortex 24: 2237–2248, 2014), suggesting that M1 may affect specific classes of pyramidal neurons differently. Here, using combined optogenetic and retrograde labeling approaches in the mouse, we examined the strengths of M1 inputs to five classes of infragranular S1 neurons categorized by their projections to particular cortical and subcortical targets. We found that the magnitude of M1 synaptic input to S1 pyramidal neurons varies greatly depending on the projection target of the postsynaptic neuron. Of the populations examined, M1-projecting corticocortical neurons in L6 received the strongest M1 inputs, whereas ventral posterior medial nucleus-projecting corticothalamic neurons, also located in L6, received the weakest. Each population also possessed distinct intrinsic properties. The results suggest that M1 differentially engages specific classes of S1 projection neurons, thereby regulating the motor-related influence S1 exerts over subcortical structures. PMID:27334960

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shigeru Shinomoto

    2009-07-01

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

  6. Neurochemical differences between target-specific populations of rat dorsal raphe projection neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prouty, Eric W; Chandler, Daniel J; Waterhouse, Barry D

    2017-11-15

    Serotonin (5-HT)-containing neurons in the dorsal raphe (DR) nucleus project throughout the forebrain and are implicated in many physiological processes and neuropsychiatric disorders. Diversity among these neurons has been characterized in terms of their neurochemistry and anatomical organization, but a clear sense of whether these attributes align with specific brain functions or terminal fields is lacking. DR 5-HT neurons can co-express additional neuroactive substances, increasing the potential for individualized regulation of target circuits. The goal of this study was to link DR neurons to a specific functional role by characterizing cells according to both their neurotransmitter expression and efferent connectivity; specifically, cells projecting to the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC), a region implicated in cognition, emotion, and responses to stress. Following retrograde tracer injection, brainstem sections from Sprague-Dawley rats were immunohistochemically stained for markers of serotonin, glutamate, GABA, and nitric oxide (NO). 98% of the mPFC-projecting serotonergic neurons co-expressed the marker for glutamate, while the markers for NO and GABA were observed in 60% and less than 1% of those neurons, respectively. To identify potential target-specific differences in co-transmitter expression, we also characterized DR neurons projecting to a visual sensory structure, the lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN). The proportion of serotonergic neurons co-expressing NO was greater amongst cells targeting the mPFC vs LGN (60% vs 22%). The established role of 5-HT in affective disorders and the emerging role of NO in stress signaling suggest that the impact of 5-HT/NO co-localization in DR neurons that regulate mPFC circuit function may be clinically relevant. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-08-18

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

  8. Area-specific migration and recruitment of new neurons in the adult songbird brain

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vellema, Michiel; Van der Linden, Annemie; Gahr, Manfred

    2010-01-01

    sensitive to plastic changes, such as nucleus higher vocal center (HVC) and area X, recruited similar numbers of new neurons as their surrounding brain tissues, employing no specific directional mechanisms. The distribution pattern in and around HVC could best be described by a random displacement model......Neuron recruitment has been implicated in morphological and functional plasticity in the adult brain. Whereas mammals restrict neuron recruitment specifically to two regions of known plasticity, the hippocampus and olfactory bulb, newborn neurons are found throughout the forebrain of adult...... songbirds. In order to study the area-specificity of the widespread proliferation and recruitment in the songbird brain, six adult male canaries received repetitive intraperitoneal injections of the mitotic marker BrdU (5-bromo-2-deoxyuridine) and were sacrificed after 24 hours to study proliferation...

  9. Functionalized anatomical models for EM-neuron Interaction modeling

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-06-01

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

  10. Astrocyte-neuron communication: functional consequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ben Achour, Sarrah; Pascual, Olivier

    2012-11-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Atsushi Shimomura

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

  12. Neuron-specific specificity protein 4 bigenomically regulates the transcription of all mitochondria- and nucleus-encoded cytochrome c oxidase subunit genes in neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johar, Kaid; Priya, Anusha; Dhar, Shilpa; Liu, Qiuli; Wong-Riley, Margaret T T

    2013-11-01

    Neurons are highly dependent on oxidative metabolism for their energy supply, and cytochrome c oxidase (COX) is a key energy-generating enzyme in the mitochondria. A unique feature of COX is that it is one of only four proteins in mammalian cells that are bigenomically regulated. Of its thirteen subunits, three are encoded in the mitochondrial genome and ten are nuclear-encoded on nine different chromosomes. The mechanism of regulating this multisubunit, bigenomic enzyme poses a distinct challenge. In recent years, we found that nuclear respiratory factors 1 and 2 (NRF-1 and NRF-2) mediate such bigenomic coordination. The latest candidate is the specificity factor (Sp) family of proteins. In N2a cells, we found that Sp1 regulates all 13 COX subunits. However, we discovered recently that in primary neurons, it is Sp4 and not Sp1 that regulates some of the key glutamatergic receptor subunit genes. The question naturally arises as to the role of Sp4 in regulating COX in primary neurons. The present study utilized multiple approaches, including chromatin immunoprecipitation, promoter mutational analysis, knockdown and over-expression of Sp4, as well as functional assays to document that Sp4 indeed functionally regulate all 13 subunits of COX as well as mitochondrial transcription factors A and B. The present study discovered that among the specificity family of transcription factors, it is the less known neuron-specific Sp4 that regulates the expression of all 13 subunits of mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase (COX) enzyme in primary neurons. Sp4 also regulates the three mitochondrial transcription factors (TFAM, TFB1M, and TFB2M) and a COX assembly protein SURF-1 in primary neurons. © 2013 International Society for Neurochemistry.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lingnau, Angelika; Caramazza, Alfonso

    2014-04-01

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

  14. Impacts of brain serotonin deficiency following Tph2 inactivation on development and raphe neuron serotonergic specification.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lise Gutknecht

    Full Text Available Brain serotonin (5-HT is implicated in a wide range of functions from basic physiological mechanisms to complex behaviors, including neuropsychiatric conditions, as well as in developmental processes. Increasing evidence links 5-HT signaling alterations during development to emotional dysregulation and psychopathology in adult age. To further analyze the importance of brain 5-HT in somatic and brain development and function, and more specifically differentiation and specification of the serotonergic system itself, we generated a mouse model with brain-specific 5-HT deficiency resulting from a genetically driven constitutive inactivation of neuronal tryptophan hydroxylase-2 (Tph2. Tph2 inactivation (Tph2-/- resulted in brain 5-HT deficiency leading to growth retardation and persistent leanness, whereas a sex- and age-dependent increase in body weight was observed in Tph2+/- mice. The conserved expression pattern of the 5-HT neuron-specific markers (except Tph2 and 5-HT demonstrates that brain 5-HT synthesis is not a prerequisite for the proliferation, differentiation and survival of raphe neurons subjected to the developmental program of serotonergic specification. Furthermore, although these neurons are unable to synthesize 5-HT from the precursor tryptophan, they still display electrophysiological properties characteristic of 5-HT neurons. Moreover, 5-HT deficiency induces an up-regulation of 5-HT(1A and 5-HT(1B receptors across brain regions as well as a reduction of norepinephrine concentrations accompanied by a reduced number of noradrenergic neurons. Together, our results characterize developmental, neurochemical, neurobiological and electrophysiological consequences of brain-specific 5-HT deficiency, reveal a dual dose-dependent role of 5-HT in body weight regulation and show that differentiation of serotonergic neuron phenotype is independent from endogenous 5-HT synthesis.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-09-22

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

  16. Cell-Specific Cholinergic Modulation of Excitability of Layer 5B Principal Neurons in Mouse Auditory Cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joshi, Ankur; Kalappa, Bopanna I.; Anderson, Charles T.

    2016-01-01

    The neuromodulator acetylcholine (ACh) is crucial for several cognitive functions, such as perception, attention, and learning and memory. Whereas, in most cases, the cellular circuits or the specific neurons via which ACh exerts its cognitive effects remain unknown, it is known that auditory cortex (AC) neurons projecting from layer 5B (L5B) to the inferior colliculus, corticocollicular neurons, are required for cholinergic-mediated relearning of sound localization after occlusion of one ear. Therefore, elucidation of the effects of ACh on the excitability of corticocollicular neurons will bridge the cell-specific and cognitive properties of ACh. Because AC L5B contains another class of neurons that project to the contralateral cortex, corticocallosal neurons, to identify the cell-specific mechanisms that enable corticocollicular neurons to participate in sound localization relearning, we investigated the effects of ACh release on both L5B corticocallosal and corticocollicular neurons. Using in vitro electrophysiology and optogenetics in mouse brain slices, we found that ACh generated nicotinic ACh receptor (nAChR)-mediated depolarizing potentials and muscarinic ACh receptor (mAChR)-mediated hyperpolarizing potentials in AC L5B corticocallosal neurons. In corticocollicular neurons, ACh release also generated nAChR-mediated depolarizing potentials. However, in contrast to the mAChR-mediated hyperpolarizing potentials in corticocallosal neurons, ACh generated prolonged mAChR-mediated depolarizing potentials in corticocollicular neurons. These prolonged depolarizing potentials generated persistent firing in corticocollicular neurons, whereas corticocallosal neurons lacking mAChR-mediated depolarizing potentials did not show persistent firing. We propose that ACh-mediated persistent firing in corticocollicular neurons may represent a critical mechanism required for learning-induced plasticity in AC. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Acetylcholine (ACh) is crucial for cognitive

  17. Brain-specific Crmp2 deletion leads to neuronal development deficits and behavioural impairments in mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Hongsheng; Kang, Eunchai; Wang, Yaqing; Yang, Chaojuan; Yu, Hui; Wang, Qin; Chen, Zheyu; Zhang, Chen; Christian, Kimberly M; Song, Hongjun; Ming, Guo-Li; Xu, Zhiheng

    2016-06-01

    Several genome- and proteome-wide studies have associated transcription and translation changes of CRMP2 (collapsing response mediator protein 2) with psychiatric disorders, yet little is known about its function in the developing or adult mammalian brain in vivo. Here we show that brain-specific Crmp2 knockout (cKO) mice display molecular, cellular, structural and behavioural deficits, many of which are reminiscent of neural features and symptoms associated with schizophrenia. cKO mice exhibit enlarged ventricles and impaired social behaviour, locomotor activity, and learning and memory. Loss of Crmp2 in the hippocampus leads to reduced long-term potentiation, abnormal NMDA receptor composition, aberrant dendrite development and defective synapse formation in CA1 neurons. Furthermore, knockdown of crmp2 specifically in newborn neurons results in stage-dependent defects in their development during adult hippocampal neurogenesis. Our findings reveal a critical role for CRMP2 in neuronal plasticity, neural function and behavioural modulation in mice.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2009-01-01

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

  19. Neuron specific Rab4 effector GRASP-1 coordinates membrane specialization and maturation of recycling endosomes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    C.C. Hoogenraad (Casper); I. Popa (Ioana); K. Futai (Kensuke); E. Sanchez-Martinez (Emma); P. Wulf (Phebe); T. van Vlijmen (Thijs); B.R. Dortland (Bjorn); V. Oorschot (Viola); R. Govers (Robert); M. Monti (Maria); A.J.R. Heck (Albert); M. Sheng (Morgan); J. Klumperman (Judith); H. Rehmann (Holger); D. Jaarsma (Dick); L.C. Kapitein (Lukas); P. van der Sluijs

    2010-01-01

    textabstractThe endosomal pathway in neuronal dendrites is essential for membrane receptor trafficking and proper synaptic function and plasticity. However, the molecular mechanisms that organize specific endocytic trafficking routes are poorly understood. Here, we identify GRIP-associated protein-1

  20. Specific Sorting and Post-Golgi trafficking of Dendritic Potassium Channels in Living Neurons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Camilla Stampe; Watanabe, Shoji; Rasmussen, Hanne Borger

    2014-01-01

    Proper membrane localization of ion channels is essential for the function of neuronal cells. Particularly, the computational ability of dendrites depends on the localization of different ion channels in specific sub-compartments. However, the molecular mechanisms which control ion channel...

  1. Changes in the Excitability of Neocortical Neurons in a Mouse Model of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Are Not Specific to Corticospinal Neurons and Are Modulated by Advancing Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Juhyun; Hughes, Ethan G; Shetty, Ashwin S; Arlotta, Paola; Goff, Loyal A; Bergles, Dwight E; Brown, Solange P

    2017-09-13

    Cell type-specific changes in neuronal excitability have been proposed to contribute to the selective degeneration of corticospinal neurons in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and to neocortical hyperexcitability, a prominent feature of both inherited and sporadic variants of the disease, but the mechanisms underlying selective loss of specific cell types in ALS are not known. We analyzed the physiological properties of distinct classes of cortical neurons in the motor cortex of hSOD1 G93A mice of both sexes and found that they all exhibit increases in intrinsic excitability that depend on disease stage. Targeted recordings and in vivo calcium imaging further revealed that neurons adapt their functional properties to normalize cortical excitability as the disease progresses. Although different neuron classes all exhibited increases in intrinsic excitability, transcriptional profiling indicated that the molecular mechanisms underlying these changes are cell type specific. The increases in excitability in both excitatory and inhibitory cortical neurons show that selective dysfunction of neuronal cell types cannot account for the specific vulnerability of corticospinal motor neurons in ALS. Furthermore, the stage-dependent alterations in neuronal function highlight the ability of cortical circuits to adapt as disease progresses. These findings show that both disease stage and cell type must be considered when developing therapeutic strategies for treating ALS. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT It is not known why certain classes of neurons preferentially die in different neurodegenerative diseases. It has been proposed that the enhanced excitability of affected neurons is a major contributor to their selective loss. We show using a mouse model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a disease in which corticospinal neurons exhibit selective vulnerability, that changes in excitability are not restricted to this neuronal class and that excitability does not increase

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Born, D.E.

    1986-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-15

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

  4. Chemically Functionalized Carbon Nanotubes as Substrates for Neuronal Growth

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2009-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sharyn L Rossi

    2010-07-01

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

  6. Leptin and insulin engage specific PI3K subunits in hypothalamic SF1 neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jong-Woo Sohn

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Objective: The ventromedial hypothalamic nucleus (VMH regulates energy balance and glucose homeostasis. Leptin and insulin exert metabolic effects via their cognate receptors expressed by the steroidogenic factor 1 (SF1 neurons within the VMH. However, detailed cellular mechanisms involved in the regulation of these neurons by leptin and insulin remain to be identified. Methods: We utilized genetically-modified mouse models and performed patch-clamp electrophysiology experiments to resolve this issue. Results: We identified distinct populations of leptin-activated and leptin-inhibited SF1 neurons. In contrast, insulin uniformly inhibited SF1 neurons. Notably, we found that leptin-activated, leptin-inhibited, and insulin-inhibited SF1 neurons are distinct subpopulations within the VMH. Leptin depolarization of SF1 neuron also required the PI3K p110β catalytic subunit. This effect was mediated by the putative transient receptor potential C (TRPC channel. On the other hand, hyperpolarizing responses of SF1 neurons by leptin and insulin required either of the p110α or p110β catalytic subunits, and were mediated by the putative ATP-sensitive K+ (KATP channel. Conclusions: Our results demonstrate that specific PI3K catalytic subunits are responsible for the acute effects of leptin and insulin on VMH SF1 neurons, and provide insights into the cellular mechanisms of leptin and insulin action on VMH SF1 neurons that regulate energy balance and glucose homeostasis. Author Video: Author Video Watch what authors say about their articles Keywords: Cellular mechanism, Conditional knockout mouse, Patch clamp technique, Functional heterogeneity, Homeostasis

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-11-06

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-05-19

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

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2015-01-01

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

  12. Modification of surface/neuron interfaces for neural cell-type specific responses: a review

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen, Cen; Kong, Xiangdong; Lee, In-Seop

    2016-01-01

    Surface/neuron interfaces have played an important role in neural repair including neural prostheses and tissue engineered scaffolds. This comprehensive literature review covers recent studies on the modification of surface/neuron interfaces. These interfaces are identified in cases both where the surfaces of substrates or scaffolds were in direct contact with cells and where the surfaces were modified to facilitate cell adhesion and controlling cell-type specific responses. Different sources of cells for neural repair are described, such as pheochromocytoma neuronal-like cell, neural stem cell (NSC), embryonic stem cell (ESC), mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) and induced pluripotent stem cell (iPS). Commonly modified methods are discussed including patterned surfaces at micro- or nano-scale, surface modification with conducting coatings, and functionalized surfaces with immobilized bioactive molecules. These approaches to control cell-type specific responses have enormous potential implications in neural repair. (paper)

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Volodymyr Krotov

    2017-11-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-03-19

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

  15. Area-specific development of distinct projection neuron subclasses is regulated by postnatal epigenetic modifications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harb, Kawssar; Magrinelli, Elia; Nicolas, Céline S; Lukianets, Nikita; Frangeul, Laura; Pietri, Mariel; Sun, Tao; Sandoz, Guillaume; Grammont, Franck; Jabaudon, Denis; Studer, Michèle; Alfano, Christian

    2016-01-01

    During cortical development, the identity of major classes of long-distance projection neurons is established by the expression of molecular determinants, which become gradually restricted and mutually exclusive. However, the mechanisms by which projection neurons acquire their final properties during postnatal stages are still poorly understood. In this study, we show that the number of neurons co-expressing Ctip2 and Satb2, respectively involved in the early specification of subcerebral and callosal projection neurons, progressively increases after birth in the somatosensory cortex. Ctip2/Satb2 postnatal co-localization defines two distinct neuronal subclasses projecting either to the contralateral cortex or to the brainstem suggesting that Ctip2/Satb2 co-expression may refine their properties rather than determine their identity. Gain- and loss-of-function approaches reveal that the transcriptional adaptor Lmo4 drives this maturation program through modulation of epigenetic mechanisms in a time- and area-specific manner, thereby indicating that a previously unknown genetic program postnatally promotes the acquisition of final subtype-specific features. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.09531.001 PMID:26814051

  16. Layer- and Cell Type-Specific Modulation of Excitatory Neuronal Activity in the Neocortex

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    Gabriele Radnikow

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available From an anatomical point of view the neocortex is subdivided into up to six layers depending on the cortical area. This subdivision has been described already by Meynert and Brodmann in the late 19/early 20. century and is mainly based on cytoarchitectonic features such as the size and location of the pyramidal cell bodies. Hence, cortical lamination is originally an anatomical concept based on the distribution of excitatory neuron. However, it has become apparent in recent years that apart from the layer-specific differences in morphological features, many functional properties of neurons are also dependent on cortical layer or cell type. Such functional differences include changes in neuronal excitability and synaptic activity by neuromodulatory transmitters. Many of these neuromodulators are released from axonal afferents from subcortical brain regions while others are released intrinsically. In this review we aim to describe layer- and cell-type specific differences in the effects of neuromodulator receptors in excitatory neurons in layers 2–6 of different cortical areas. We will focus on the neuromodulator systems using adenosine, acetylcholine, dopamine, and orexin/hypocretin as examples because these neuromodulator systems show important differences in receptor type and distribution, mode of release and functional mechanisms and effects. We try to summarize how layer- and cell type-specific neuromodulation may affect synaptic signaling in cortical microcircuits.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-12-09

    capable of glutamate cotransmission. With conditional expression of channelrhodopsin in dopamine neurons, we systematically explored dopamine neuron connections in the forebrain and identified regionally specific dopamine neuron excitatory connections. Establishing that only a subset of forebrain regions receive excitatory connections from dopamine neurons will help to determine the function of dopamine neuron glutamate cotransmission, which likely involves transmission of precise temporal signals and enhancement of the dynamic range of dopamine neuron signals. Copyright © 2015 the authors 0270-6474/15/3516259-13$15.00/0.

  18. Female-biased dimorphism underlies a female-specific role for post-embryonic Ilp7 neurons in Drosophila fertility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castellanos, Monica C.; Tang, Jonathan C. Y.; Allan, Douglas W.

    2013-01-01

    In Drosophila melanogaster, much of our understanding of sexually dimorphic neuronal development and function comes from the study of male behavior, leaving female behavior less well understood. Here, we identify a post-embryonic population of Insulin-like peptide 7 (Ilp7)-expressing neurons in the posterior ventral nerve cord that innervate the reproductive tracts and exhibit a female bias in their function. They form two distinct dorsal and ventral subsets in females, but only a single dorsal subset in males, signifying a rare example of a female-specific neuronal subset. Female post-embryonic Ilp7 neurons are glutamatergic motoneurons innervating the oviduct and are required for female fertility. In males, they are serotonergic/glutamatergic neuromodulatory neurons innervating the seminal vesicle but are not required for male fertility. In both sexes, these neurons express the sex-differentially spliced fruitless-P1 transcript but not doublesex. The male fruitless-P1 isoform (fruM) was necessary and sufficient for serotonin expression in the shared dorsal Ilp7 subset, but although it was necessary for eliminating female-specific Ilp7 neurons in males, it was not sufficient for their elimination in females. By contrast, sex-specific RNA-splicing by female-specific transformer is necessary for female-type Ilp7 neurons in females and is sufficient for their induction in males. Thus, the emergence of female-biased post-embryonic Ilp7 neurons is mediated in a subset-specific manner by a tra- and fru-dependent mechanism in the shared dorsal subset, and a tra-dependent, fru-independent mechanism in the female-specific subset. These studies provide an important counterpoint to studies of the development and function of male-biased neuronal dimorphism in Drosophila. PMID:23981656

  19. Cell-Type Specific Development of the Hyperpolarization-Activated Current, Ih, in Prefrontal Cortical Neurons

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    Sha-Sha Yang

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available H-current, also known as hyperpolarization-activated current (Ih, is an inward current generated by the hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated (HCN cation channels. Ih plays an essential role in regulating neuronal properties, synaptic integration and plasticity, and synchronous activity in the brain. As these biological factors change across development, the brain undergoes varying levels of vulnerability to disorders like schizophrenia that disrupt prefrontal cortex (PFC-dependent function. However, developmental changes in Ih in PFC neurons remains untested. Here, we examine Ih in pyramidal neurons vs. gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABAergic parvalbumin-expressing (PV+ interneurons in developing mouse PFC. Our findings show that the amplitudes of Ih in these cell types are identical during the juvenile period but differ at later time points. In pyramidal neurons, Ih amplitude significantly increases from juvenile to adolescence and follows a similar trend into adulthood. In contrast, the amplitude of Ih in PV+ interneurons decreases from juvenile to adolescence, and does not change from adolescence to adulthood. Moreover, the kinetics of HCN channels in pyramidal neurons is significantly slower than in PV+ interneurons, with a gradual decrease in pyramidal neurons and a gradual increase in PV+ cells across development. Our study reveals distinct developmental trajectories of Ih in pyramidal neurons and PV+ interneurons. The cell-type specific alteration of Ih during the critical period from juvenile to adolescence reflects the contribution of Ih to the maturation of the PFC and PFC-dependent function. These findings are essential for a better understanding of normal PFC function, and for elucidating Ih’s crucial role in the pathophysiology of neurodevelopmental disorders.

  20. A Discrete Population of Neurons in the Lateral Amygdala Is Specifically Activated by Contextual Fear Conditioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Yvette M.; Murphy, Mark

    2009-01-01

    There is no clear identification of the neurons involved in fear conditioning in the amygdala. To search for these neurons, we have used a genetic approach, the "fos-tau-lacZ" (FTL) mouse, to map functionally activated expression in neurons following contextual fear conditioning. We have identified a discrete population of neurons in the lateral…

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-01-01

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

  2. Area-specific temporal control of corticospinal motor neuron differentiation by COUP-TFI

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomassy, Giulio Srubek; De Leonibus, Elvira; Jabaudon, Denis; Lodato, Simona; Alfano, Christian; Mele, Andrea; Macklis, Jeffrey D.; Studer, Michèle

    2010-01-01

    Transcription factors with gradients of expression in neocortical progenitors give rise to distinct motor and sensory cortical areas by controlling the area-specific differentiation of distinct neuronal subtypes. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying this area-restricted control are still unclear. Here, we show that COUP-TFI controls the timing of birth and specification of corticospinal motor neurons (CSMN) in somatosensory cortex via repression of a CSMN differentiation program. Loss of COUP-TFI function causes an area-specific premature generation of neurons with cardinal features of CSMN, which project to subcerebral structures, including the spinal cord. Concurrently, genuine CSMN differentiate imprecisely and do not project beyond the pons, together resulting in impaired skilled motor function in adult mice with cortical COUP-TFI loss-of-function. Our findings indicate that COUP-TFI exerts critical areal and temporal control over the precise differentiation of CSMN during corticogenesis, thereby enabling the area-specific functional features of motor and sensory areas to arise. PMID:20133588

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-02-01

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

  4. Specific reactions of different striatal neuron types in morphology induced by quinolinic acid in rats.

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    Qiqi Feng

    Full Text Available Huntington's disease (HD is a neurological degenerative disease and quinolinic acid (QA has been used to establish HD model in animals through the mechanism of excitotoxicity. Yet the specific pathological changes and the underlying mechanisms are not fully elucidated. We aimed to reveal the specific morphological changes of different striatal neurons in the HD model. Sprague-Dawley (SD rats were subjected to unilaterally intrastriatal injections of QA to mimic the HD model. Behavioral tests, histochemical and immunhistochemical stainings as well as Western blots were applied in the present study. The results showed that QA-treated rats had obvious motor and cognitive impairments when compared with the control group. Immunohistochemical detection showed a great loss of NeuN+ neurons and Darpp32+ projection neurons in the transition zone in the QA group when compared with the control group. The numbers of parvalbumin (Parv+ and neuropeptide Y (NPY+ interneurons were both significantly reduced while those of calretinin (Cr+ and choline acetyltransferase (ChAT+ were not changed notably in the transition zone in the QA group when compared to the controls. Parv+, NPY+ and ChAT+ interneurons were not significantly increased in fiber density while Cr+ neurons displayed an obvious increase in fiber density in the transition zone in QA-treated rats. The varicosity densities of Parv+, Cr+ and NPY+ interneurons were all raised in the transition zone after QA treatment. In conclusion, the present study revealed that QA induced obvious behavioral changes as well as a general loss of striatal projection neurons and specific morphological changes in different striatal interneurons, which may help further explain the underlying mechanisms and the specific functions of various striatal neurons in the pathological process of HD.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-04-01

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

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

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

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

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    Ramesh Chandra

    2017-06-01

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

  8. A regulatory code for neuron-specific odor receptor expression.

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    Anandasankar Ray

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Olfactory receptor neurons (ORNs must select-from a large repertoire-which odor receptors to express. In Drosophila, most ORNs express one of 60 Or genes, and most Or genes are expressed in a single ORN class in a process that produces a stereotyped receptor-to-neuron map. The construction of this map poses a problem of receptor gene regulation that is remarkable in its dimension and about which little is known. By using a phylogenetic approach and the genome sequences of 12 Drosophila species, we systematically identified regulatory elements that are evolutionarily conserved and specific for individual Or genes of the maxillary palp. Genetic analysis of these elements supports a model in which each receptor gene contains a zip code, consisting of elements that act positively to promote expression in a subset of ORN classes, and elements that restrict expression to a single ORN class. We identified a transcription factor, Scalloped, that mediates repression. Some elements are used in other chemosensory organs, and some are conserved upstream of axon-guidance genes. Surprisingly, the odor response spectra and organization of maxillary palp ORNs have been extremely well-conserved for tens of millions of years, even though the amino acid sequences of the receptors are not highly conserved. These results, taken together, define the logic by which individual ORNs in the maxillary palp select which odor receptors to express.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fahad Haroon

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

  11. Building functional networks of spiking model neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-03-01

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

  12. Gender-specific role of mitochondria in the vulnerability of 6-hydroxydopamine-treated mesencephalic neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Misiak, Magdalena; Beyer, Cordian; Arnold, Susanne

    2010-01-01

    Many neurodegenerative diseases, such as Morbus Parkinson, exhibit a gender-dependency showing a higher incidence in men than women. Most of the neurodegenerative disorders involve either causally or consequently a dysfunction of mitochondria. Therefore, neuronal mitochondria may demonstrate a gender-specificity with respect to structural and functional characteristics of these organelles during toxic and degenerative processes. The application of 6-OHDA (6-hydroxydopamine) in vitro and in vivo represents a well-accepted experimental model of Parkinson's disease causing Parkinsonian symptoms. Besides the known effects of 6-OHDA on mitochondria and neuronal survivability, we aimed to demonstrate that the mitochondrial neurotoxin affects the morphology and survival of primary dopaminergic and non-dopaminergic neurons in the mesencephalon in a gender-specific manner by influencing the transcription of mitochondrial genes, ATP and reactive oxygen species production. Our data suggest that cell death in response to 6-OHDA is primarily caused due to increased oxidative stress which is more pronounced in male than in female mesencephalic neurons. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-07-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-01-01

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

  15. Layer-specific excitation/inhibition balances during neuronal synchronization in the visual cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adesnik, Hillel

    2018-05-01

    Understanding the balance between synaptic excitation and inhibition in cortical circuits in the brain, and how this contributes to cortical rhythms, is fundamental to explaining information processing in the cortex. This study used cortical layer-specific optogenetic activation in mouse cortex to show that excitatory neurons in any cortical layer can drive powerful gamma rhythms, while inhibition balances excitation. The net impact of this is to keep activity within each layer in check, but simultaneously to promote the propagation of activity to downstream layers. The data show that rhythm-generating circuits exist in all principle layers of the cortex, and provide layer-specific balances of excitation and inhibition that affect the flow of information across the layers. Rhythmic activity can synchronize neural ensembles within and across cortical layers. While gamma band rhythmicity has been observed in all layers, the laminar sources and functional impacts of neuronal synchronization in the cortex remain incompletely understood. Here, layer-specific optogenetic stimulation demonstrates that populations of excitatory neurons in any cortical layer of the mouse's primary visual cortex are sufficient to powerfully entrain neuronal oscillations in the gamma band. Within each layer, inhibition balances excitation and keeps activity in check. Across layers, translaminar output overcomes inhibition and drives downstream firing. These data establish that rhythm-generating circuits exist in all principle layers of the cortex, but provide layer-specific balances of excitation and inhibition that may dynamically shape the flow of information through cortical circuits. These data might help explain how excitation/inhibition (E/I) balances across cortical layers shape information processing, and shed light on the diverse nature and functional impacts of cortical gamma rhythms. © 2018 The Authors. The Journal of Physiology © 2018 The Physiological Society.

  16. Layer-specific morphological and molecular differences in neocortical astrocytes and their dependence on neuronal layers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lanjakornsiripan, Darin; Pior, Baek-Jun; Kawaguchi, Daichi; Furutachi, Shohei; Tahara, Tomoaki; Katsuyama, Yu; Suzuki, Yutaka; Fukazawa, Yugo; Gotoh, Yukiko

    2018-04-24

    Non-pial neocortical astrocytes have historically been thought to comprise largely a nondiverse population of protoplasmic astrocytes. Here we show that astrocytes of the mouse somatosensory cortex manifest layer-specific morphological and molecular differences. Two- and three-dimensional observations revealed that astrocytes in the different layers possess distinct morphologies as reflected by differences in cell orientation, territorial volume, and arborization. The extent of ensheathment of synaptic clefts by astrocytes in layer II/III was greater than that by those in layer VI. Moreover, differences in gene expression were observed between upper-layer and deep-layer astrocytes. Importantly, layer-specific differences in astrocyte properties were abrogated in reeler and Dab1 conditional knockout mice, in which neuronal layers are disturbed, suggesting that neuronal layers are a prerequisite for the observed morphological and molecular differences of neocortical astrocytes. This study thus demonstrates the existence of layer-specific interactions between neurons and astrocytes, which may underlie their layer-specific functions.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-04-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Valdearcos

    2014-12-01

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

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2005-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-03-16

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-10-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-10-26

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rainer eFriedrich

    2013-04-01

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

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

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    Yuming Wang

    2016-03-01

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

  5. The Neuron-Specific Protein TMEM59L Mediates Oxidative Stress-Induced Cell Death.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, Qiuyang; Zheng, Xiaoyuan; Zhang, Lishan; Luo, Hong; Qian, Lingzhi; Fu, Xing; Liu, Yiqian; Gao, Yuehong; Niu, Mengxi; Meng, Jian; Zhang, Muxian; Bu, Guojun; Xu, Huaxi; Zhang, Yun-Wu

    2017-08-01

    TMEM59L is a newly identified brain-specific membrane-anchored protein with unknown functions. Herein we found that both TMEM59L and its homolog, TMEM59, are localized in Golgi and endosomes. However, in contrast to a ubiquitous and relatively stable temporal expression of TMEM59, TMEM59L expression was limited in neurons and increased during development. We also found that both TMEM59L and TMEM59 interacted with ATG5 and ATG16L1, and that overexpression of them triggered cell autophagy. However, overexpression of TMEM59L induced intrinsic caspase-dependent apoptosis more dramatically than TMEM59. In addition, downregulation of TMEM59L prevented neuronal cell death and caspase-3 activation caused by hydrogen peroxide insults and reduced the lipidation of LC3B. Finally, we found that AAV-mediated knockdown of TMEM59L in mice significantly ameliorated caspase-3 activation, increased mouse duration in the open arm during elevated plus maze test, reduced mouse immobility time during forced swim test, and enhanced mouse memory during Y-maze and Morris water maze tests. Together, our study indicates that TMEM59L is a pro-apoptotic neuronal protein involved in animal behaviors such as anxiety, depression, and memory, and that TMEM59L downregulation protects neurons against oxidative stress.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

    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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-09-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-04-24

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shrujna Patel

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

  10. Emergence of Functional Specificity in Balanced Networks with Synaptic Plasticity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sadra Sadeh

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available In rodent visual cortex, synaptic connections between orientation-selective neurons are unspecific at the time of eye opening, and become to some degree functionally specific only later during development. An explanation for this two-stage process was proposed in terms of Hebbian plasticity based on visual experience that would eventually enhance connections between neurons with similar response features. For this to work, however, two conditions must be satisfied: First, orientation selective neuronal responses must exist before specific recurrent synaptic connections can be established. Second, Hebbian learning must be compatible with the recurrent network dynamics contributing to orientation selectivity, and the resulting specific connectivity must remain stable for unspecific background activity. Previous studies have mainly focused on very simple models, where the receptive fields of neurons were essentially determined by feedforward mechanisms, and where the recurrent network was small, lacking the complex recurrent dynamics of large-scale networks of excitatory and inhibitory neurons. Here we studied the emergence of functionally specific connectivity in large-scale recurrent networks with synaptic plasticity. Our results show that balanced random networks, which already exhibit highly selective responses at eye opening, can develop feature-specific connectivity if appropriate rules of synaptic plasticity are invoked within and between excitatory and inhibitory populations. If these conditions are met, the initial orientation selectivity guides the process of Hebbian learning and, as a result, functionally specific and a surplus of bidirectional connections emerge. Our results thus demonstrate the cooperation of synaptic plasticity and recurrent dynamics in large-scale functional networks with realistic receptive fields, highlight the role of inhibition as a critical element in this process, and paves the road for further computational

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Taghavi Kani M

    2011-02-01

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

  12. The sex of specific neurons controls female body growth in Drosophila.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sawala, Annick; Gould, Alex P

    2017-10-01

    Sexual dimorphisms in body size are widespread throughout the animal kingdom but their underlying mechanisms are not well characterized. Most models for how sex chromosome genes specify size dimorphism have emphasized the importance of gonadal hormones and cell-autonomous influences in mammals versus strictly cell-autonomous mechanisms in Drosophila melanogaster. Here, we use tissue-specific genetics to investigate how sexual size dimorphism (SSD) is established in Drosophila. We find that the larger body size characteristic of Drosophila females is established very early in larval development via an increase in the growth rate per unit of body mass. We demonstrate that the female sex determination gene, Sex-lethal (Sxl), functions in central nervous system (CNS) neurons as part of a relay that specifies the early sex-specific growth trajectories of larval but not imaginal tissues. Neuronal Sxl acts additively in 2 neuronal subpopulations, one of which corresponds to 7 median neurosecretory cells: the insulin-producing cells (IPCs). Surprisingly, however, male-female differences in the production of insulin-like peptides (Ilps) from the IPCs do not appear to be involved in establishing SSD in early larvae, although they may play a later role. These findings support a relay model in which Sxl in neurons and Sxl in local tissues act together to specify the female-specific growth of the larval body. They also reveal that, even though the sex determination pathways in Drosophila and mammals are different, they both modulate body growth via a combination of tissue-autonomous and nonautonomous inputs.

  13. The cellular prion protein interacts with the tissue non-specific alkaline phosphatase in membrane microdomains of bioaminergic neuronal cells.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Myriam Ermonval

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The cellular prion protein, PrP(C, is GPI anchored and abundant in lipid rafts. The absolute requirement of PrP(C in neurodegeneration associated to prion diseases is well established. However, the function of this ubiquitous protein is still puzzling. Our previous work using the 1C11 neuronal model, provided evidence that PrP(C acts as a cell surface receptor. Besides a ubiquitous signaling function of PrP(C, we have described a neuronal specificity pointing to a role of PrP(C in neuronal homeostasis. 1C11 cells, upon appropriate induction, engage into neuronal differentiation programs, giving rise either to serotonergic (1C11(5-HT or noradrenergic (1C11(NE derivatives. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: The neuronal specificity of PrP(C signaling prompted us to search for PrP(C partners in 1C11-derived bioaminergic neuronal cells. We show here by immunoprecipitation an association of PrP(C with an 80 kDa protein identified by mass spectrometry as the tissue non-specific alkaline phosphatase (TNAP. This interaction occurs in lipid rafts and is restricted to 1C11-derived neuronal progenies. Our data indicate that TNAP is implemented during the differentiation programs of 1C11(5-HT and 1C11(NE cells and is active at their cell surface. Noteworthy, TNAP may contribute to the regulation of serotonin or catecholamine synthesis in 1C11(5-HT and 1C11(NE bioaminergic cells by controlling pyridoxal phosphate levels. Finally, TNAP activity is shown to modulate the phosphorylation status of laminin and thereby its interaction with PrP. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: The identification of a novel PrP(C partner in lipid rafts of neuronal cells favors the idea of a role of PrP in multiple functions. Because PrP(C and laminin functionally interact to support neuronal differentiation and memory consolidation, our findings introduce TNAP as a functional protagonist in the PrP(C-laminin interplay. The partnership between TNAP and PrP(C in neuronal cells may

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-04-01

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

  15. Oligodendrocyte- and Neuron-Specific Nogo-A Restrict Dendritic Branching and Spine Density in the Adult Mouse Motor Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zemmar, Ajmal; Chen, Chia-Chien; Weinmann, Oliver; Kast, Brigitt; Vajda, Flora; Bozeman, James; Isaad, Noel; Zuo, Yi; Schwab, Martin E

    2018-06-01

    Nogo-A has been well described as a myelin-associated inhibitor of neurite outgrowth and functional neuroregeneration after central nervous system (CNS) injury. Recently, a new role of Nogo-A has been identified as a negative regulator of synaptic plasticity in the uninjured adult CNS. Nogo-A is present in neurons and oligodendrocytes. However, it is yet unclear which of these two pools regulate synaptic plasticity. To address this question we used newly generated mouse lines in which Nogo-A is specifically knocked out in (1) oligodendrocytes (oligoNogo-A KO) or (2) neurons (neuroNogo-A KO). We show that both oligodendrocyte- and neuron-specific Nogo-A KO mice have enhanced dendritic branching and spine densities in layer 2/3 cortical pyramidal neurons. These effects are compartmentalized: neuronal Nogo-A affects proximal dendrites whereas oligodendrocytic Nogo-A affects distal regions. Finally, we used two-photon laser scanning microscopy to measure the spine turnover rate of adult mouse motor cortex layer 5 cells and find that both Nogo-A KO mouse lines show enhanced spine remodeling after 4 days. Our results suggest relevant control functions of glial as well as neuronal Nogo-A for synaptic plasticity and open new possibilities for more selective and targeted plasticity enhancing strategies.

  16. Sleep, Neuronal Plasticity and Brain Function

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2015-01-01

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

  17. Confounding the origin and function of mirror neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rizzolatti, Giacomo

    2014-04-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-07-26

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

  19. Delta-like 1 participates in the specification of ventral midbrain progenitor derived dopaminergic neurons

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bauer, Matthias; Szulc, Jolanta; Meyer, Morten

    2008-01-01

    function of Dlk1 in VM neuron development, we investigated the effect of soluble Dlk1 protein as well as the intrinsic Dlk1 function in the course of VM progenitor expansion and dopaminergic (DA) neuron differentiation in vitro. Dlk1 treatment during expansion increased DA progenitor proliferation...

  20. Controlling the Regional Identity of hPSC-Derived Neurons to Uncover Neuronal Subtype Specificity of Neurological Disease Phenotypes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kent Imaizumi

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The CNS contains many diverse neuronal subtypes, and most neurological diseases target specific subtypes. However, the mechanism of neuronal subtype specificity of disease phenotypes remains elusive. Although in vitro disease models employing human pluripotent stem cells (PSCs have great potential to clarify the association of neuronal subtypes with disease, it is currently difficult to compare various PSC-derived subtypes. This is due to the limited number of subtypes whose induction is established, and different cultivation protocols for each subtype. Here, we report a culture system to control the regional identity of PSC-derived neurons along the anteroposterior (A-P and dorsoventral (D-V axes. This system was successfully used to obtain various neuronal subtypes based on the same protocol. Furthermore, we reproduced subtype-specific phenotypes of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS and Alzheimer’s disease (AD by comparing the obtained subtypes. Therefore, our culture system provides new opportunities for modeling neurological diseases with PSCs.

  1. Optogenetically enhanced axon regeneration: motor versus sensory neuron-specific stimulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward, Patricia J; Clanton, Scott L; English, Arthur W

    2018-02-01

    Brief neuronal activation in injured peripheral nerves is both necessary and sufficient to enhance motor axon regeneration, and this effect is specific to the activated motoneurons. It is less clear whether sensory neurons respond in a similar manner to neuronal activation following peripheral axotomy. Further, it is unknown to what extent enhancement of axon regeneration with increased neuronal activity relies on a reflexive interaction within the spinal circuitry. We used mouse genetics and optical tools to evaluate the precision and selectivity of system-specific neuronal activation to enhance axon regeneration in a mixed nerve. We evaluated sensory and motor axon regeneration in two different mouse models expressing the light-sensitive cation channel, channelrhodopsin (ChR2). We selectively activated either sensory or motor axons using light stimulation combined with transection and repair of the sciatic nerve. Regardless of genotype, the number of ChR2-positive neurons whose axons had regenerated successfully was greater following system-specific optical treatment, with no effect on the number of ChR2-negative neurons (whether motor or sensory neurons). We conclude that acute system-specific neuronal activation is sufficient to enhance both motor and sensory axon regeneration. This regeneration-enhancing effect is likely cell autonomous. © 2018 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-10-18

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

  3. Functional neuronal processing of human body odors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lundström, Johan N; Olsson, Mats J

    2010-01-01

    Body odors carry informational cues of great importance for individuals across a wide range of species, and signals hidden within the body odor cocktail are known to regulate several key behaviors in animals. For a long time, the notion that humans may be among these species has been dismissed. We now know, however, that each human has a unique odor signature that carries information related to his or her genetic makeup, as well as information about personal environmental variables, such as diet and hygiene. Although a substantial number of studies have investigated the behavioral effects of body odors, only a handful have studied central processing. Recent studies have, however, demonstrated that the human brain responds to fear signals hidden within the body odor cocktail, is able to extract kin specific signals, and processes body odors differently than other perceptually similar odors. In this chapter, we provide an overview of the current knowledge of how the human brain processes body odors and the potential importance these signals have for us in everyday life. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Tissue Specific Expression of Cre in Rat Tyrosine Hydroxylase and Dopamine Active Transporter-Positive Neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Zhenyi; Brown, Andrew; Fisher, Dan; Wu, Yumei; Warren, Joe; Cui, Xiaoxia

    2016-01-01

    The rat is a preferred model system over the mouse for neurological studies, and cell type-specific Cre expression in the rat enables precise ablation of gene function in neurons of interest, which is especially valuable for neurodegenerative disease modeling and optogenetics. Yet, few such Cre rats are available. Here we report the characterization of two Cre rats, tyrosine hydroxylase (TH)-Cre and dopamine active transporter (DAT or Slc6a3)-Cre, by using a combination of immunohistochemistry (IHC) and mRNA fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) as well as a fluorescent reporter for Cre activity. We detected Cre expression in expected neurons in both Cre lines. Interestingly, we also found that in Th-Cre rats, but not DAT-Cre rats, Cre is expressed in female germ cells, allowing germline excision of the floxed allele and hence the generation of whole-body knockout rats. In summary, our data demonstrate that targeted integration of Cre cassette lead to faithful recapitulation of expression pattern of the endogenous promoter, and mRNA FISH, in addition to IHC, is an effective method for the analysis of the spatiotemporal gene expression patterns in the rat brain, alleviating the dependence on high quality antibodies that are often not available against rat proteins. The Th-Cre and the DAT-Cre rat lines express Cre in selective subsets of dopaminergic neurons and should be particularly useful for researches on Parkinson's disease.

  5. Olfactory map formation in the Drosophila brain: genetic specificity and neuronal variability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brochtrup, Anna; Hummel, Thomas

    2011-02-01

    The development of the Drosophila olfactory system is a striking example of how genetic programs specify a large number of different neuron types and assemble them into functional circuits. To ensure precise odorant perception, each sensory neuron has to not only select a single olfactory receptor (OR) type out of a large genomic repertoire but also segregate its synaptic connections in the brain according to the OR class identity. Specification and patterning of second-order interneurons in the olfactory brain center occur largely independent of sensory input, followed by a precise point-to-point matching of sensory and relay neurons. Here we describe recent progress in the understanding of how cell-intrinsic differentiation programs and context-dependent cellular interactions generate a stereotyped sensory map in the Drosophila brain. Recent findings revealed an astonishing morphological diversity among members of the same interneuron class, suggesting an unexpected variability in local microcircuits involved in insect sensory processing. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antic, Srdjan D.; Empson, Ruth M.

    2016-01-01

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

  7. Ecdysone signaling regulates specification of neurons with a male-specific neurite in Drosophila

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Binglong Zhang

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Some mAL neurons in the male brain form the ipsilateral neurite (ILN[+] in a manner dependent on FruBM, a male-specific transcription factor. FruBM represses robo1 transcription, allowing the ILN to form. We found that the proportion of ILN[+]-mALs in all observed single cell clones dropped from ∼90% to ∼30% by changing the heat-shock timing for clone induction from 4-5 days after egg laying (AEL to 6-7 days AEL, suggesting that the ILN[+]-mALs are produced predominantly by young neuroblasts. Upon EcR-A knockdown, ILN[+]-mALs were produced at a high rate (∼60%, even when heat shocked at 6-7 days AEL, yet EcR-B1 knockdown reduced the proportion of ILN[+]-mALs to ∼30%. Immunoprecipitation assays in S2 cells demonstrated that EcR-A and EcR-B1 form a complex with FruBM. robo1 reporter transcription was repressed by FruBM and ecdysone counteracted FruBM. We suggest that ecdysone signaling modulates the FruBM action to produce an appropriate number of male-type neurons.

  8. Functional discriminant method and neuronal net

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Minh-Quan Tran.

    1993-02-01

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

  9. The brain-specific factor FEZ1 is a determinant of neuronal susceptibility to HIV-1 infection.

    LENUS (Irish Health Repository)

    Haedicke, Juliane

    2009-08-18

    Neurons are one of the few cell types in the human body that do not support HIV type-1 (HIV-1) replication. Although the lack of key receptors is a major obstacle to infection, studies suggest that additional functions inhibit virus replication to explain the exquisite resistance of neurons to HIV-1. However, specific neuronal factors that may explain this resistance remain to be discovered. In a screen for antiviral factors using a fibroblast line chemically mutagenized and selected for resistance to retroviral infection, we recently identified induction of rat FEZ1 (fasciculation and elongation protein zeta-1), a brain-specific protein, as the cause of this resistance. When exogenously expressed in nonneuronal cell lines rat FEZ1 blocked nuclear entry of retroviral DNA. Here, we demonstrate that among human brain cells, neurons naturally express high levels of FEZ1 compared to astrocytes or microglia cells and are correspondingly less susceptible to infection with pseudotyped HIV-1 that bypasses receptor-mediated viral entry. Demonstrating that endogenous FEZ1 was functionally important in the resistance of neurons to HIV-1 infection, siRNA-mediated knockdown of endogenous FEZ1 increased the infectivity of neurons while sensitive brain cell types like microglia became more resistant upon FEZ1 overexpression. In addition, FEZ1 expression was not induced in response to IFN treatment. As such, in contrast to other widely expressed, IFN-inducible antiviral factors, FEZ1 appears to represent a unique neuron-specific determinant of cellular susceptibility to infection in a cell type that is naturally resistant to HIV-1.

  10. Differential 3’ processing of specific transcripts expands regulatory and protein diversity across neuronal cell types

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jereb, Saša; Hwang, Hun-Way; Van Otterloo, Eric; Govek, Eve-Ellen; Fak, John J; Yuan, Yuan; Hatten, Mary E

    2018-01-01

    Alternative polyadenylation (APA) regulates mRNA translation, stability, and protein localization. However, it is unclear to what extent APA regulates these processes uniquely in specific cell types. Using a new technique, cTag-PAPERCLIP, we discovered significant differences in APA between the principal types of mouse cerebellar neurons, the Purkinje and granule cells, as well as between proliferating and differentiated granule cells. Transcripts that differed in APA in these comparisons were enriched in key neuronal functions and many differed in coding sequence in addition to 3’UTR length. We characterize Memo1, a transcript that shifted from expressing a short 3’UTR isoform to a longer one during granule cell differentiation. We show that Memo1 regulates granule cell precursor proliferation and that its long 3’UTR isoform is targeted by miR-124, contributing to its downregulation during development. Our findings provide insight into roles for APA in specific cell types and establish a platform for further functional studies. PMID:29578408

  11. Context Fear Learning Specifically Activates Distinct Populations of Neurons in Amygdala and Hypothalamus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trogrlic, Lidia; Wilson, Yvette M.; Newman, Andrew G.; Murphy, Mark

    2011-01-01

    The identity and distribution of neurons that are involved in any learning or memory event is not known. In previous studies, we identified a discrete population of neurons in the lateral amygdala that show learning-specific activation of a c-"fos"-regulated transgene following context fear conditioning. Here, we have extended these studies to…

  12. Fear conditioning leads to alteration in specific genes expression in cortical and thalamic neurons that project to the lateral amygdala.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katz, Ira K; Lamprecht, Raphael

    2015-02-01

    RNA transcription is needed for memory formation. However, the ability to identify genes whose expression is altered by learning is greatly impaired because of methodological difficulties in profiling gene expression in specific neurons involved in memory formation. Here, we report a novel approach to monitor the expression of genes after learning in neurons in specific brain pathways needed for memory formation. In this study, we aimed to monitor gene expression after fear learning. We retrogradely labeled discrete thalamic neurons that project to the lateral amygdala (LA) of rats. The labeled neurons were dissected, using laser microdissection microscopy, after fear conditioning learning or unpaired training. The RNAs from the dissected neurons were subjected to microarray analysis. The levels of selected RNAs detected by the microarray analysis to be altered by fear conditioning were also assessed by nanostring analysis. We observed that the expression of genes involved in the regulation of translation, maturation and degradation of proteins was increased 6 h after fear conditioning compared to unpaired or naïve trained rats. These genes were not expressed 24 h after training or in cortical neurons that project to the LA. The expression of genes involved in transcription regulation and neuronal development was altered after fear conditioning learning in the cortical-LA pathway. The present study provides key information on the identity of genes expressed in discrete thalamic and cortical neurons that project to the LA after fear conditioning. Such an approach could also serve to identify gene products as targets for the development of a new generation of therapeutic agents that could be aimed to functionally identified brain circuits to treat memory-related disorders. © 2014 International Society for Neurochemistry.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2006-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bron Dominique

    2008-04-01

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

  15. Stimulation of neuronal neurite outgrowth using functionalized carbon nanotubes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2010-03-19

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

  16. Inflammation-induced reversible switch of the neuron-specific enolase promoter from Purkinje neurons to Bergmann glia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sawada, Yusuke; Konno, Ayumu; Nagaoka, Jun; Hirai, Hirokazu

    2016-06-13

    Neuron-specific enolase (NSE) is a glycolytic isoenzyme found in mature neurons and cells of neuronal origin. Injecting adeno-associated virus serotype 9 (AAV9) vectors carrying the NSE promoter into the cerebellar cortex is likely to cause the specific transduction of neuronal cells, such as Purkinje cells (PCs) and interneurons, but not Bergmann glia (BG). However, we found BG-predominant transduction without PC transduction along a traumatic needle tract for viral injection. The enhancement of neuroinflammation by the co-application of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) with AAV9 significantly expanded the BG-predominant area concurrently with the potentiated microglial activation. The BG-predominant transduction was gradually replaced by the PC-predominant transduction as the neuroinflammation dissipated. Experiments using glioma cell cultures revealed significant activation of the NSE promoter due to glucose deprivation, suggesting that intracellularly stored glycogen is metabolized through the glycolytic pathway for energy. Activation of the glycolytic enzyme promoter in BG concurrently with inactivation in PC may have pathophysiological significance for the production of lactate in activated BG and the utilization of lactate, which is provided by the BG-PC lactate shuttle, as a primary energy resource in injured PCs.

  17. Regulation of Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase by neuron-specific transcription factor Sp4: implication in the tight coupling of energy production, neuronal activity and energy consumption in neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johar, Kaid; Priya, Anusha; Wong-Riley, Margaret T T

    2014-02-01

    A major source of energy demand in neurons is the Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase pump that restores the ionic gradient across the plasma membrane subsequent to depolarizing neuronal activity. The energy comes primarily from mitochondrial oxidative metabolism, of which cytochrome c oxidase (COX) is a key enzyme. Recently, we found that all 13 subunits of COX are regulated by specificity (Sp) factors, and that the neuron-specific Sp4, but not Sp1 or Sp3, regulates the expression of key glutamatergic receptor subunits as well. The present study sought to test our hypothesis that Sp4 also regulates Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase subunit genes in neurons. By means of multiple approaches, including in silico analysis, electrophoretic mobility shift and supershift assays, chromatin immunoprecipitation, promoter mutational analysis, over-expression, and RNA interference studies, we found that Sp4, with minor contributions from Sp1 and Sp3, functionally regulate the Atp1a1, Atp1a3, and Atp1b1 subunit genes of Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase in neurons. Transcripts of all three genes were up-regulated by depolarizing KCl stimulation and down-regulated by the impulse blocker tetrodotoxin (TTX), indicating that their expression was activity-dependent. Silencing of Sp4 blocked the up-regulation of these genes induced by KCl, whereas over-expression of Sp4 rescued them from TTX-induced suppression. The effect of silencing or over-expressing Sp4 on primary neurons was much greater than those of Sp1 or Sp3. The binding sites of Sp factors on these genes are conserved among mice, rats and humans. Thus, Sp4 plays an important role in the transcriptional coupling of energy generation and energy consumption in neurons. © 2013 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vogt Weisenhorn Daniela M

    2010-12-01

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

  19. Empirical Specification of Utility Functions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mellenbergh, Gideon J.

    Decision theory can be applied to four types of decision situations in education and psychology: (1) selection; (2) placement; (3) classification; and (4) mastery. For the application of the theory, a utility function must be specified. Usually the utility function is chosen on a priori grounds. In this paper methods for the empirical assessment…

  20. VTA GABA neurons modulate specific learning behaviours through the control of dopamine and cholinergic systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meaghan C Creed

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The mesolimbic reward system is primarily comprised of the ventral tegmental area (VTA and the nucleus accumbens (NAc as well as their afferent and efferent connections. This circuitry is essential for learning about stimuli associated with motivationally-relevant outcomes. Moreover, addictive drugs affect and remodel this system, which may underlie their addictive properties. In addition to DA neurons, the VTA also contains approximately 30% ɣ-aminobutyric acid (GABA neurons. The task of signalling both rewarding and aversive events from the VTA to the NAc has mostly been ascribed to DA neurons and the role of GABA neurons has been largely neglected until recently. GABA neurons provide local inhibition of DA neurons and also long-range inhibition of projection regions, including the NAc. Here we review studies using a combination of in vivo and ex vivo electrophysiology, pharmacogenetic and optogenetic manipulations that have characterized the functional neuroanatomy of inhibitory circuits in the mesolimbic system, and describe how GABA neurons of the VTA regulate reward and aversion-related learning. We also discuss pharmacogenetic manipulation of this system with benzodiazepines (BDZs, a class of addictive drugs, which act directly on GABAA receptors located on GABA neurons of the VTA. The results gathered with each of these approaches suggest that VTA GABA neurons bi-directionally modulate activity of local DA neurons, underlying reward or aversion at the behavioural level. Conversely, long-range GABA projections from the VTA to the NAc selectively target cholinergic interneurons (CINs to pause their firing and temporarily reduce cholinergic tone in the NAc, which modulates associative learning. Further characterization of inhibitory circuit function within and beyond the VTA is needed in order to fully understand the function of the mesolimbic system under normal and pathological conditions.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luc J Gentet

    2012-08-01

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

  2. A Specific Population of Reticulospinal Neurons Controls the Termination of Locomotion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juvin, Laurent; Grätsch, Swantje; Trillaud-Doppia, Emilie; Gariépy, Jean-François; Büschges, Ansgar; Dubuc, Réjean

    2016-06-14

    Locomotion requires the proper sequencing of neural activity to start, maintain, and stop it. Recently, brainstem neurons were shown to specifically stop locomotion in mammals. However, the cellular properties of these neurons and their activity during locomotion are still unknown. Here, we took advantage of the lamprey model to characterize the activity of a cell population that we now show to be involved in stopping locomotion. We find that these neurons display a burst of spikes that coincides with the end of swimming activity. Their pharmacological activation ends ongoing swimming, whereas the inactivation of these neurons dramatically impairs the rapid termination of swimming. These neurons are henceforth referred to as stop cells, because they play a crucial role in the termination of locomotion. Our findings contribute to the fundamental understanding of motor control and provide important details about the cellular mechanisms involved in locomotor termination. Copyright © 2016 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Rotolo

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Minh T Than

    2013-06-01

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

  5. Toxic effects of lead on neuronal development and function

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1990-01-01

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

  6. Delivery of circulating lipoproteins to specific neurons in the Drosophila brain regulates systemic insulin signaling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brankatschk, Marko; Dunst, Sebastian; Nemetschke, Linda; Eaton, Suzanne

    2014-10-02

    The Insulin signaling pathway couples growth, development and lifespan to nutritional conditions. Here, we demonstrate a function for the Drosophila lipoprotein LTP in conveying information about dietary lipid composition to the brain to regulate Insulin signaling. When yeast lipids are present in the diet, free calcium levels rise in Blood Brain Barrier glial cells. This induces transport of LTP across the Blood Brain Barrier by two LDL receptor-related proteins: LRP1 and Megalin. LTP accumulates on specific neurons that connect to cells that produce Insulin-like peptides, and induces their release into the circulation. This increases systemic Insulin signaling and the rate of larval development on yeast-containing food compared with a plant-based food of similar nutritional content.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nusser, Zoltan

    2012-06-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2002-10-25

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saaty, Thomas

    2017-02-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-03-06

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-01-01

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

  12. Human-Specific Histone Methylation Signatures at Transcription Start Sites in Prefrontal Neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheung, Iris; Bharadwaj, Rahul; Chou, Hsin-Jung; Houston, Isaac B.; Peter, Cyril J.; Mitchell, Amanda C.; Yao, Wei-Dong; Myers, Richard H.; Chen, Jiang-fan; Preuss, Todd M.; Rogaev, Evgeny I.; Jensen, Jeffrey D.; Weng, Zhiping; Akbarian, Schahram

    2012-01-01

    Cognitive abilities and disorders unique to humans are thought to result from adaptively driven changes in brain transcriptomes, but little is known about the role of cis-regulatory changes affecting transcription start sites (TSS). Here, we mapped in human, chimpanzee, and macaque prefrontal cortex the genome-wide distribution of histone H3 trimethylated at lysine 4 (H3K4me3), an epigenetic mark sharply regulated at TSS, and identified 471 sequences with human-specific enrichment or depletion. Among these were 33 loci selectively methylated in neuronal but not non-neuronal chromatin from children and adults, including TSS at DPP10 (2q14.1), CNTN4 and CHL1 (3p26.3), and other neuropsychiatric susceptibility genes. Regulatory sequences at DPP10 and additional loci carried a strong footprint of hominid adaptation, including elevated nucleotide substitution rates and regulatory motifs absent in other primates (including archaic hominins), with evidence for selective pressures during more recent evolution and adaptive fixations in modern populations. Chromosome conformation capture at two neurodevelopmental disease loci, 2q14.1 and 16p11.2, revealed higher order chromatin structures resulting in physical contact of multiple human-specific H3K4me3 peaks spaced 0.5–1 Mb apart, in conjunction with a novel cis-bound antisense RNA linked to Polycomb repressor proteins and downregulated DPP10 expression. Therefore, coordinated epigenetic regulation via newly derived TSS chromatin could play an important role in the emergence of human-specific gene expression networks in brain that contribute to cognitive functions and neurological disease susceptibility in modern day humans. PMID:23185133

  13. Classic cadherin expressions balance postnatal neuronal positioning and dendrite dynamics to elaborate the specific cytoarchitecture of the mouse cortical area.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Egusa, Saki F; Inoue, Yukiko U; Asami, Junko; Terakawa, Youhei W; Hoshino, Mikio; Inoue, Takayoshi

    2016-04-01

    A unique feature of the mammalian cerebral cortex is in its tangential parcellation via anatomical and functional differences. However, the cellular and/or molecular machinery involved in cortical arealization remain largely unknown. Here we map expression profiles of classic cadherins in the postnatal mouse barrel field of the primary somatosensory area (S1BF) and generate a novel bacterial artificial chromosome transgenic (BAC-Tg) mouse line selectively illuminating nuclei of cadherin-6 (Cdh6)-expressing layer IV barrel neurons to confirm that tangential cellular assemblage of S1BF is established by postnatal day 5 (P5). When we electroporate the cadherins expressed in both barrel neurons and thalamo-cortical axon (TCA) terminals limited to the postnatal layer IV neurons, S1BF cytoarchitecture is disorganized with excess elongation of dendrites at P7. Upon delivery of dominant negative molecules for all classic cadherins, tangential cellular positioning and biased dendritic arborization of barrel neurons are significantly altered. These results underscore the value of classic cadherin-mediated sorting among neuronal cell bodies, dendrites and TCA terminals in postnatally elaborating the S1BF-specific tangential cytoarchitecture. Additionally, how the "protocortex" machinery affects classic cadherin expression profiles in the process of cortical arealization is examined and discussed. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd and the Japan Neuroscience Society. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-08-04

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

  15. Tissue-specific models of spinal muscular atrophy confirm a critical role of SMN in motor neurons from embryonic to adult stages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Laird, Angela S; Mackovski, Nikolce; Rinkwitz, Silke; Becker, Thomas S; Giacomotto, Jean

    2016-05-01

    Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is an autosomal recessive disease linked to survival motor neuron (SMN) protein deficiency. While SMN protein is expressed ubiquitously, its deficiency triggers tissue-specific hallmarks, including motor neuron death and muscle atrophy, leading to impaired motor functions and premature death. Here, using stable miR-mediated knockdown technology in zebrafish, we developed the first vertebrate system allowing transgenic spatio-temporal control of the smn1 gene. Using this new model it is now possible to investigate normal and pathogenic SMN function(s) in specific cell types, independently or in synergy with other cell populations. We took advantage of this new system to first test the effect of motor neuron or muscle-specific smn1 silencing. Anti-smn1 miRNA expression in motor neurons, but not in muscles, reproduced SMA hallmarks, including abnormal motor neuron development, poor motor function and premature death. Interestingly, smn1 knockdown in motor neurons also induced severe late-onset phenotypes including scoliosis-like body deformities, weight loss, muscle atrophy and, seen for the first time in zebrafish, reduction in the number of motor neurons, indicating motor neuron degeneration. Taken together, we have developed a new transgenic system allowing spatio-temporal control of smn1 expression in zebrafish, and using this model, we have demonstrated that smn1 silencing in motor neurons alone is sufficient to reproduce SMA hallmarks in zebrafish. It is noteworthy that this research is going beyond SMA as this versatile gene-silencing transgenic system can be used to knockdown any genes of interest, filling the gap in the zebrafish genetic toolbox and opening new avenues to study gene functions in this organism. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  16. Immunization Elicits Antigen-Specific Antibody Sequestration in Dorsal Root Ganglia Sensory Neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gunasekaran, Manojkumar; Chatterjee, Prodyot K.; Shih, Andrew; Imperato, Gavin H.; Addorisio, Meghan; Kumar, Gopal; Lee, Annette; Graf, John F.; Meyer, Dan; Marino, Michael; Puleo, Christopher; Ashe, Jeffrey; Cox, Maureen A.; Mak, Tak W.; Bouton, Chad; Sherry, Barbara; Diamond, Betty; Andersson, Ulf; Coleman, Thomas R.; Metz, Christine N.; Tracey, Kevin J.; Chavan, Sangeeta S.

    2018-01-01

    The immune and nervous systems are two major organ systems responsible for host defense and memory. Both systems achieve memory and learning that can be retained, retrieved, and utilized for decades. Here, we report the surprising discovery that peripheral sensory neurons of the dorsal root ganglia (DRGs) of immunized mice contain antigen-specific antibodies. Using a combination of rigorous molecular genetic analyses, transgenic mice, and adoptive transfer experiments, we demonstrate that DRGs do not synthesize these antigen-specific antibodies, but rather sequester primarily IgG1 subtype antibodies. As revealed by RNA-seq and targeted quantitative PCR (qPCR), dorsal root ganglion (DRG) sensory neurons harvested from either naïve or immunized mice lack enzymes (i.e., RAG1, RAG2, AID, or UNG) required for generating antibody diversity and, therefore, cannot make antibodies. Additionally, transgenic mice that express a reporter fluorescent protein under the control of Igγ1 constant region fail to express Ighg1 transcripts in DRG sensory neurons. Furthermore, neural sequestration of antibodies occurs in mice rendered deficient in neuronal Rag2, but antibody sequestration is not observed in DRG sensory neurons isolated from mice that lack mature B cells [e.g., Rag1 knock out (KO) or μMT mice]. Finally, adoptive transfer of Rag1-deficient bone marrow (BM) into wild-type (WT) mice or WT BM into Rag1 KO mice revealed that antibody sequestration was observed in DRG sensory neurons of chimeric mice with WT BM but not with Rag1-deficient BM. Together, these results indicate that DRG sensory neurons sequester and retain antigen-specific antibodies released by antibody-secreting plasma cells. Coupling this work with previous studies implicating DRG sensory neurons in regulating antigen trafficking during immunization raises the interesting possibility that the nervous system collaborates with the immune system to regulate antigen-mediated responses. PMID:29755449

  17. Immunization Elicits Antigen-Specific Antibody Sequestration in Dorsal Root Ganglia Sensory Neurons

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manojkumar Gunasekaran

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The immune and nervous systems are two major organ systems responsible for host defense and memory. Both systems achieve memory and learning that can be retained, retrieved, and utilized for decades. Here, we report the surprising discovery that peripheral sensory neurons of the dorsal root ganglia (DRGs of immunized mice contain antigen-specific antibodies. Using a combination of rigorous molecular genetic analyses, transgenic mice, and adoptive transfer experiments, we demonstrate that DRGs do not synthesize these antigen-specific antibodies, but rather sequester primarily IgG1 subtype antibodies. As revealed by RNA-seq and targeted quantitative PCR (qPCR, dorsal root ganglion (DRG sensory neurons harvested from either naïve or immunized mice lack enzymes (i.e., RAG1, RAG2, AID, or UNG required for generating antibody diversity and, therefore, cannot make antibodies. Additionally, transgenic mice that express a reporter fluorescent protein under the control of Igγ1 constant region fail to express Ighg1 transcripts in DRG sensory neurons. Furthermore, neural sequestration of antibodies occurs in mice rendered deficient in neuronal Rag2, but antibody sequestration is not observed in DRG sensory neurons isolated from mice that lack mature B cells [e.g., Rag1 knock out (KO or μMT mice]. Finally, adoptive transfer of Rag1-deficient bone marrow (BM into wild-type (WT mice or WT BM into Rag1 KO mice revealed that antibody sequestration was observed in DRG sensory neurons of chimeric mice with WT BM but not with Rag1-deficient BM. Together, these results indicate that DRG sensory neurons sequester and retain antigen-specific antibodies released by antibody-secreting plasma cells. Coupling this work with previous studies implicating DRG sensory neurons in regulating antigen trafficking during immunization raises the interesting possibility that the nervous system collaborates with the immune system to regulate antigen-mediated responses.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semple, Erin; Hill, Jennifer W

    2018-01-01

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

  19. Neuronal type-specific gene expression profiling and laser-capture microdissection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pietersen, Charmaine Y; Lim, Maribel P; Macey, Laurel; Woo, Tsung-Ung W; Sonntag, Kai C

    2011-01-01

    The human brain is an exceptionally heterogeneous structure. In order to gain insight into the neurobiological basis of neural circuit disturbances in various neurologic or psychiatric diseases, it is often important to define the molecular cascades that are associated with these disturbances in a neuronal type-specific manner. This can be achieved by the use of laser microdissection, in combination with molecular techniques such as gene expression profiling. To identify neurons in human postmortem brain tissue, one can use the inherent properties of the neuron, such as pigmentation and morphology or its structural composition through immunohistochemistry (IHC). Here, we describe the isolation of homogeneous neuronal cells and high-quality RNA from human postmortem brain material using a combination of rapid IHC, Nissl staining, or simple morphology with Laser-Capture Microdissection (LCM) or Laser Microdissection (LMD).

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

    We investigated the functional expression of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) in heterogeneous populations of dissociated rat and mouse lumbar dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons by calcium imaging. By this experimental approach, it is possible to investigate the functional expression of multiple receptor and ion-channel subtypes across more than 100 neuronal and glial cells simultaneously. Based on nAChR expression, DRG neurons could be divided into four subclasses: (1) neurons that express predominantly α3β4 and α6β4 nAChRs; (2) neurons that express predominantly α7 nAChRs; (3) neurons that express a combination of α3β4/α6β4 and α7 nAChRs; and (4) neurons that do not express nAChRs. In this comparative study, the same four neuronal subclasses were observed in mouse and rat DRG. However, the expression frequency differed between species: substantially more rat DRG neurons were in the first three subclasses than mouse DRG neurons, at all developmental time points tested in our study. Approximately 70-80% of rat DRG neurons expressed functional nAChRs, in contrast to only ~15-30% of mouse DRG neurons. Our study also demonstrated functional coupling between nAChRs, voltage-gated calcium channels, and mitochondrial Ca(2) (+) transport in discrete subsets of DRG neurons. In contrast to the expression of nAChRs in DRG neurons, we demonstrated that a subset of non-neuronal DRG cells expressed muscarinic acetylcholine receptors and not nAChRs. The general approach to comparative cellular neurobiology outlined in this paper has the potential to better integrate molecular and systems neuroscience by uncovering the spectrum of neuronal subclasses present in a given cell population and the functionally integrated signaling components expressed in each subclass.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-01-11

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-08-15

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

  3. Neuron-specific RNA interference using lentiviral vectors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Troels Tolstrup; Marion, Ingrid van; Hasholt, Lis

    2009-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Viral vectors have been used in several different settings for the delivery of small hairpin (sh) RNAs. However, most vectors have utilized ubiquitously-expressing polymerase (pol) III promoters to drive expression of the hairpin as a result of the strict requirement for precise...... transcriptional initiation and termination. Recently, pol II promoters have been used to construct vectors for RNA interference (RNAi). By embedding the shRNA into a micro RNA-context (miRNA) the endogenous miRNA processing machinery is exploited to achieve the mature synthetic miRNA (smiRNA), thereby expanding...... the possible promoter choices and eventually allowing cell type specific down-regulation of target genes. METHODS: In the present study, we constructed lentiviral vectors expressing smiRNAs under the control of pol II promoters to knockdown gene expression in cell culture and in the brain. RESULTS: We...

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2007-01-01

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

  5. Induction of specific neuron types by overexpression of single transcription factors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teratani-Ota, Yusuke; Yamamizu, Kohei; Piao, Yulan; Sharova, Lioudmila; Amano, Misa; Yu, Hong; Schlessinger, David; Ko, Minoru S H; Sharov, Alexei A

    2016-10-01

    Specific neuronal types derived from embryonic stem cells (ESCs) can facilitate mechanistic studies and potentially aid in regenerative medicine. Existing induction methods, however, mostly rely on the effects of the combined action of multiple added growth factors, which generally tend to result in mixed populations of neurons. Here, we report that overexpression of specific transcription factors (TFs) in ESCs can rather guide the differentiation of ESCs towards specific neuron lineages. Analysis of data on gene expression changes 2 d after induction of each of 185 TFs implicated candidate TFs for further ESC differentiation studies. Induction of 23 TFs (out of 49 TFs tested) for 6 d facilitated neural differentiation of ESCs as inferred from increased proportion of cells with neural progenitor marker PSA-NCAM. We identified early activation of the Notch signaling pathway as a common feature of most potent inducers of neural differentiation. The majority of neuron-like cells generated by induction of Ascl1, Smad7, Nr2f1, Dlx2, Dlx4, Nr2f2, Barhl2, and Lhx1 were GABA-positive and expressed other markers of GABAergic neurons. In the same way, we identified Lmx1a and Nr4a2 as inducers for neurons bearing dopaminergic markers and Isl1, Fezf2, and St18 for cholinergic motor neurons. A time-course experiment with induction of Ascl1 showed early upregulation of most neural-specific messenger RNA (mRNA) and microRNAs (miRNAs). Sets of Ascl1-induced mRNAs and miRNAs were enriched in Ascl1 targets. In further studies, enrichment of cells obtained with the induction of Ascl1, Smad7, and Nr2f1 using microbeads resulted in essentially pure population of neuron-like cells with expression profiles similar to neural tissues and expressed markers of GABAergic neurons. In summary, this study indicates that induction of transcription factors is a promising approach to generate cultures that show the transcription profiles characteristic of specific neural cell types.

  6. Neuron-specific antioxidant OXR1 extends survival of a mouse model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Kevin X; Edwards, Benjamin; Lee, Sheena; Finelli, Mattéa J; Davies, Ben; Davies, Kay E; Oliver, Peter L

    2015-05-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis is a devastating neurodegenerative disorder characterized by the progressive loss of spinal motor neurons. While the aetiological mechanisms underlying the disease remain poorly understood, oxidative stress is a central component of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and contributes to motor neuron injury. Recently, oxidation resistance 1 (OXR1) has emerged as a critical regulator of neuronal survival in response to oxidative stress, and is upregulated in the spinal cord of patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Here, we tested the hypothesis that OXR1 is a key neuroprotective factor during amyotrophic lateral sclerosis pathogenesis by crossing a new transgenic mouse line that overexpresses OXR1 in neurons with the SOD1(G93A) mouse model of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Interestingly, we report that overexpression of OXR1 significantly extends survival, improves motor deficits, and delays pathology in the spinal cord and in muscles of SOD1(G93A) mice. Furthermore, we find that overexpression of OXR1 in neurons significantly delays non-cell-autonomous neuroinflammatory response, classic complement system activation, and STAT3 activation through transcriptomic analysis of spinal cords of SOD1(G93A) mice. Taken together, these data identify OXR1 as the first neuron-specific antioxidant modulator of pathogenesis and disease progression in SOD1-mediated amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and suggest that OXR1 may serve as a novel target for future therapeutic strategies. © The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain.

  7. Neuron specific metabolic adaptations following multi-day exposures to oxygen glucose deprivation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeiger, Stephanie L H; McKenzie, Jennifer R; Stankowski, Jeannette N; Martin, Jacob A; Cliffel, David E; McLaughlin, BethAnn

    2010-11-01

    Prior exposure to sub toxic insults can induce a powerful endogenous neuroprotective program known as ischemic preconditioning. Current models typically rely on a single stress episode to induce neuroprotection whereas the clinical reality is that patients may experience multiple transient ischemic attacks (TIAs) prior to suffering a stroke. We sought to develop a neuron-enriched preconditioning model using multiple oxygen glucose deprivation (OGD) episodes to assess the endogenous protective mechanisms neurons implement at the metabolic and cellular level. We found that neurons exposed to a five minute period of glucose deprivation recovered oxygen utilization and lactate production using novel microphysiometry techniques. Using the non-toxic and energetically favorable five minute exposure, we developed a preconditioning paradigm where neurons are exposed to this brief OGD for three consecutive days. These cells experienced a 45% greater survival following an otherwise lethal event and exhibited a longer lasting window of protection in comparison to our previous in vitro preconditioning model using a single stress. As in other models, preconditioned cells exhibited mild caspase activation, an increase in oxidized proteins and a requirement for reactive oxygen species for neuroprotection. Heat shock protein 70 was upregulated during preconditioning, yet the majority of this protein was released extracellularly. We believe coupling this neuron-enriched multi-day model with microphysiometry will allow us to assess neuronal specific real-time metabolic adaptations necessary for preconditioning. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Layer- and column-specific knockout of NMDA receptors in pyramidal neurons of the mouse barrel cortex.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rachel Aronoff

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available Viral vectors injected into the mouse brain offer the possibility for localized genetic modifications in a highly controlled manner. Lentivector injection into mouse neocortex transduces cells within a diameter of approximately 200µm, which closely matches the lateral scale of a column in barrel cortex. The depth and volume of the injection determines which cortical layer is transduced. Furthermore, transduced gene expression from the lentivector can be limited to predominantly pyramidal neurons by using a 1.3kb fragment of the αCaMKII promoter. This technique therefore allows genetic manipulation of a specific cell type in defined columns and layers of the neocortex. By expressing Cre recombinase from such a lentivector in gene-targeted mice carrying a floxed gene, highly specific genetic lesions can be induced. Here, we demonstrate the utility of this approach by specifically knocking out NMDA receptors (NMDARs in pyramidal neurons in the somatosensory barrel cortex of gene-targeted mice carrying floxed NMDAR 1 genes. Neurons transduced with lentivector encoding GFP and Cre recombinase exhibit not only reductions in NMDAR 1 mRNA levels, but reduced NMDAR-dependent currents and pairing-induced synaptic potentiation. This technique for knockout of NMDARs in a cell type, column- and layer-specific manner in the mouse somatosensory cortex may help further our understanding of the functional roles of NMDARs in vivo during sensory perception and learning.

  9. TRPA1 is functionally expressed primarily by IB4-binding, non-peptidergic mouse and rat sensory neurons.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marie E Barabas

    Full Text Available Subpopulations of somatosensory neurons are characterized by functional properties and expression of receptor proteins and surface markers. CGRP expression and IB4-binding are commonly used to define peptidergic and non-peptidergic subpopulations. TRPA1 is a polymodal, plasma membrane ion channel that contributes to mechanical and cold hypersensitivity during tissue injury, making it a key target for pain therapeutics. Some studies have shown that TRPA1 is predominantly expressed by peptidergic sensory neurons, but others indicate that TRPA1 is expressed extensively within non-peptidergic, IB4-binding neurons. We used FURA-2 calcium imaging to define the functional distribution of TRPA1 among peptidergic and non-peptidergic adult mouse (C57BL/6J DRG neurons. Approximately 80% of all small-diameter (<27 µm neurons from lumbar 1-6 DRGs that responded to TRPA1 agonists allyl isothiocyanate (AITC; 79% or cinnamaldehyde (84% were IB4-positive. Retrograde labeling via plantar hind paw injection of WGA-Alexafluor594 showed similarly that most (81% cutaneous neurons responding to TRPA1 agonists were IB4-positive. Additionally, we cultured DRG neurons from a novel CGRP-GFP mouse where GFP expression is driven by the CGRPα promoter, enabling identification of CGRP-expressing live neurons. Interestingly, 78% of TRPA1-responsive neurons were CGRP-negative. Co-labeling with IB4 revealed that the majority (66% of TRPA1 agonist responders were IB4-positive but CGRP-negative. Among TRPA1-null DRGs, few small neurons (2-4% responded to either TRPA1 agonist, indicating that both cinnamaldehyde and AITC specifically target TRPA1. Additionally, few large neurons (≥27 µm diameter responded to AITC (6% or cinnamaldehyde (4%, confirming that most large-diameter somata lack functional TRPA1. Comparison of mouse and rat DRGs showed that the majority of TRPA1-responsive neurons in both species were IB4-positive. Together, these data demonstrate that TRPA1 is

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stucky, Cheryl L.

    2012-01-01

    Subpopulations of somatosensory neurons are characterized by functional properties and expression of receptor proteins and surface markers. CGRP expression and IB4-binding are commonly used to define peptidergic and non-peptidergic subpopulations. TRPA1 is a polymodal, plasma membrane ion channel that contributes to mechanical and cold hypersensitivity during tissue injury, making it a key target for pain therapeutics. Some studies have shown that TRPA1 is predominantly expressed by peptidergic sensory neurons, but others indicate that TRPA1 is expressed extensively within non-peptidergic, IB4-binding neurons. We used FURA-2 calcium imaging to define the functional distribution of TRPA1 among peptidergic and non-peptidergic adult mouse (C57BL/6J) DRG neurons. Approximately 80% of all small-diameter (neurons from lumbar 1–6 DRGs that responded to TRPA1 agonists allyl isothiocyanate (AITC; 79%) or cinnamaldehyde (84%) were IB4-positive. Retrograde labeling via plantar hind paw injection of WGA-Alexafluor594 showed similarly that most (81%) cutaneous neurons responding to TRPA1 agonists were IB4-positive. Additionally, we cultured DRG neurons from a novel CGRP-GFP mouse where GFP expression is driven by the CGRPα promoter, enabling identification of CGRP-expressing live neurons. Interestingly, 78% of TRPA1-responsive neurons were CGRP-negative. Co-labeling with IB4 revealed that the majority (66%) of TRPA1 agonist responders were IB4-positive but CGRP-negative. Among TRPA1-null DRGs, few small neurons (2–4%) responded to either TRPA1 agonist, indicating that both cinnamaldehyde and AITC specifically target TRPA1. Additionally, few large neurons (≥27 µm diameter) responded to AITC (6%) or cinnamaldehyde (4%), confirming that most large-diameter somata lack functional TRPA1. Comparison of mouse and rat DRGs showed that the majority of TRPA1-responsive neurons in both species were IB4-positive. Together, these data demonstrate that TRPA1 is functionally expressed

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

    The regulation of gene expression is accomplished by both genetic and epigenetic means and is required for the precise control of the development of the neural crest. In hdac1(b382) mutants, craniofacial cartilage development is defective in two distinct ways. First, fewer hoxb3a, dlx2 and dlx3-expressing posterior branchial arch precursors are specified and many of those that are consequently undergo apoptosis. Second, in contrast, normal numbers of progenitors are present in the anterior mandibular and hyoid arches, but chondrocyte precursors fail to terminally differentiate. In the peripheral nervous system, there is a disruption of enteric, DRG and sympathetic neuron differentiation in hdac1(b382) mutants compared to wildtype embryos. Specifically, enteric and DRG-precursors differentiate into neurons in the anterior gut and trunk respectively, while enteric and DRG neurons are rarely present in the posterior gut and tail. Sympathetic neuron precursors are specified in hdac1(b382) mutants and they undergo generic neuronal differentiation but fail to undergo noradrenergic differentiation. Using the HDAC inhibitor TSA, we isolated enzyme activity and temporal requirements for HDAC function that reproduce hdac1(b382) defects in craniofacial and sympathetic neuron development. Our study reveals distinct functional and temporal requirements for zebrafish hdac1 during neural crest-derived craniofacial and peripheral neuron development.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Myron S Ignatius

    Full Text Available The regulation of gene expression is accomplished by both genetic and epigenetic means and is required for the precise control of the development of the neural crest. In hdac1(b382 mutants, craniofacial cartilage development is defective in two distinct ways. First, fewer hoxb3a, dlx2 and dlx3-expressing posterior branchial arch precursors are specified and many of those that are consequently undergo apoptosis. Second, in contrast, normal numbers of progenitors are present in the anterior mandibular and hyoid arches, but chondrocyte precursors fail to terminally differentiate. In the peripheral nervous system, there is a disruption of enteric, DRG and sympathetic neuron differentiation in hdac1(b382 mutants compared to wildtype embryos. Specifically, enteric and DRG-precursors differentiate into neurons in the anterior gut and trunk respectively, while enteric and DRG neurons are rarely present in the posterior gut and tail. Sympathetic neuron precursors are specified in hdac1(b382 mutants and they undergo generic neuronal differentiation but fail to undergo noradrenergic differentiation. Using the HDAC inhibitor TSA, we isolated enzyme activity and temporal requirements for HDAC function that reproduce hdac1(b382 defects in craniofacial and sympathetic neuron development. Our study reveals distinct functional and temporal requirements for zebrafish hdac1 during neural crest-derived craniofacial and peripheral neuron development.

  13. Cell-type-specific and differentiation-status-dependent variations in cytotoxicity of tributyltin in cultured rat cerebral neurons and astrocytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oyanagi, Koshi; Tashiro, Tomoko; Negishi, Takayuki

    2015-08-01

    Tributyltin (TBT) is an organotin used as an anti-fouling agent for fishing nets and ships and it is a widespread environmental contaminant at present. There is an increasing concern about imperceptible but serious adverse effect(s) of exposure to chemicals existing in the environment on various organs and their physiological functions, e.g. brain and mental function. Here, so as to contribute to improvement of and/or advances in in vitro cell-based assay systems for evaluating brain-targeted adverse effect of chemicals, we tried to evaluate cell-type-specific and differentiation-status-dependent variations in the cytotoxicity of TBT towards neurons and astrocytes using the four culture systems differing in the relative abundance of these two types of cells; primary neuron culture (> 95% neurons), primary neuron-astrocyte (2 : 1) mix culture, primary astrocyte culture (> 95% astrocytes), and passaged astrocyte culture (100% proliferative astrocytes). Cell viability was measured at 48 hr after exposure to TBT in serum-free medium. IC50's of TBT were 198 nM in primary neuron culture, 288 nM in primary neuron-astrocyte mix culture, 2001 nM in primary astrocyte culture, and 1989 nM in passaged astrocyte culture. Furthermore, in primary neuron-astrocyte mix culture, vulnerability of neurons cultured along with astrocytes to TBT toxicity was lower than that of neurons cultured purely in primary neuron culture. On the other hand, astrocytes in primary neuron-astrocyte mix culture were considered to be more vulnerable to TBT than those in primary or passaged astrocyte culture. The present study demonstrated variable cytotoxicity of TBT in neural cells depending on the culture condition.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-04-01

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

  15. Nonenzymatic glucosylation of neuronal calmodulin and its functional consequences

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1986-01-01

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

  16. Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell Models of Progranulin-Deficient Frontotemporal Dementia Uncover Specific Reversible Neuronal Defects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra Almeida

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available The pathogenic mechanisms of frontotemporal dementia (FTD remain poorly understood. Here we generated multiple induced pluripotent stem cell lines from a control subject, a patient with sporadic FTD, and an FTD patient with a novel heterozygous GRN mutation (progranulin [PGRN] S116X. In neurons and microglia differentiated from PGRN S116X induced pluripotent stem cells, the levels of intracellular and secreted PGRN were reduced, establishing patient-specific cellular models of PGRN haploinsufficiency. Through a systematic screen of inducers of cellular stress, we found that PGRN S116X neurons, but not sporadic FTD neurons, exhibited increased sensitivity to staurosporine and other kinase inhibitors. Moreover, the serine/threonine kinase S6K2, a component of the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase and mitogen-activated protein kinase pathways, was specifically downregulated in PGRN S116X neurons. Both increased sensitivity to kinase inhibitors and reduced S6K2 were rescued by PGRN expression. Our findings identify cell-autonomous, reversible defects in patient neurons with PGRN deficiency, and provide a compelling model for studying PGRN-dependent pathogenic mechanisms and testing potential therapies.

  17. Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell Models of Progranulin-Deficient Frontotemporal Dementia Uncover Specific Reversible Neuronal Defects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida, Sandra; Zhang, Zhijun; Coppola, Giovanni; Mao, Wenjie; Futai, Kensuke; Karydas, Anna; Geschwind, Michael D.; Tartaglia, M. Carmela; Gao, Fuying; Gianni, Davide; Sena-Esteves, Miguel; Geschwind, Daniel H.; Miller, Bruce L.; Farese, Robert V.; Gao, Fen-Biao

    2012-01-01

    SUMMARY The pathogenic mechanisms of frontotemporal dementia (FTD) remain poorly understood. Here we generated multiple induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) lines from a control subject, a patient with sporadic FTD, and an FTD patient with a novel GRN mutation (PGRN S116X). In neurons and microglia differentiated from PGRN S116X iPSCs, the levels of intracellular and secreted progranulin were reduced, establishing patient-specific cellular models of progranulin haploinsufficiency. Through a systematic screen of inducers of cellular stress, we found that PGRN S116X neurons, but not sporadic FTD neurons, exhibited increased sensitivity to staurosporine and other kinase inhibitors. Moreover, the serine/threonine kinase S6K2, a component of the PI3K and MAPK pathways, was specifically downregulated in PGRN S116X neurons. Both increased sensitivity to kinase inhibitors and reduced S6K2 were rescued by progranulin expression. Our findings identify cell-autonomous, reversible defects in patient neurons with progranulin deficiency and provide a new model for studying progranulin-dependent pathogenic mechanisms and testing potential therapies. PMID:23063362

  18. Learning to see the difference specifically alters the most informative V4 neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raiguel, Steven; Vogels, Rufin; Mysore, Santosh G; Orban, Guy A

    2006-06-14

    Perceptual learning is an instance of adult plasticity whereby training in a sensory (e.g., a visual task) results in neuronal changes leading to an improved ability to perform the task. Yet studies in primary visual cortex have found that changes in neuronal response properties were relatively modest. The present study examines the effects of training in an orientation discrimination task on the response properties of V4 neurons in awake rhesus monkeys. Results indicate that the changes induced in V4 are indeed larger than those in V1. Nonspecific effects of training included a decrease in response variance, and an increase in overall orientation selectivity in V4. The orientation-specific changes involved a local steepening in the orientation tuning curve around the trained orientation that selectively improved orientation discriminability at the trained orientation. Moreover, these changes were largely confined to the population of neurons whose orientation tuning was optimal for signaling small differences in orientation at the trained orientation. Finally, the modifications were restricted to the part of the tuning curve close to the trained orientation. Thus, we conclude that it is the most informative V4 neurons, those most directly involved in the discrimination, that are specifically modified by perceptual learning.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nikitin, E S; Balaban, P M

    2011-01-01

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

  20. Increased serum neuron specific enolase concentrations in patients with hyperglycemic cortical ischemic stroke

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Elting, JW; De Keyser, J; Sulter, G.

    1998-01-01

    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

  1. The function of mirror neurons in the learning process

    OpenAIRE

    Mara Daniel

    2017-01-01

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

  2. Computational network design from functional specifications

    KAUST Repository

    Peng, Chi Han; Yang, Yong Liang; Bao, Fan; Fink, Daniel; Yan, Dongming; Wonka, Peter; Mitra, Niloy J.

    2016-01-01

    of people in a workspace. Designing such networks from scratch is challenging as even local network changes can have large global effects. We investigate how to computationally create networks starting from only high-level functional specifications

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-05-17

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

  4. Macoilin, a conserved nervous system-specific ER membrane protein that regulates neuronal excitability.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fausto Arellano-Carbajal

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Genome sequence comparisons have highlighted many novel gene families that are conserved across animal phyla but whose biological function is unknown. Here, we functionally characterize a member of one such family, the macoilins. Macoilins are characterized by several highly conserved predicted transmembrane domains towards the N-terminus and by coiled-coil regions C-terminally. They are found throughout Eumetazoa but not in other organisms. Mutants for the single Caenorhabditis elegans macoilin, maco-1, exhibit a constellation of behavioral phenotypes, including defects in aggregation, O₂ responses, and swimming. MACO-1 protein is expressed broadly and specifically in the nervous system and localizes to the rough endoplasmic reticulum; it is excluded from dendrites and axons. Apart from subtle synapse defects, nervous system development appears wild-type in maco-1 mutants. However, maco-1 animals are resistant to the cholinesterase inhibitor aldicarb and sensitive to levamisole, suggesting pre-synaptic defects. Using in vivo imaging, we show that macoilin is required to evoke Ca²(+ transients, at least in some neurons: in maco-1 mutants the O₂-sensing neuron PQR is unable to generate a Ca²(+ response to a rise in O₂. By genetically disrupting neurotransmission, we show that pre-synaptic input is not necessary for PQR to respond to O₂, indicating that the response is mediated by cell-intrinsic sensory transduction and amplification. Disrupting the sodium leak channels NCA-1/NCA-2, or the N-,P/Q,R-type voltage-gated Ca²(+ channels, also fails to disrupt Ca²(+ responses in the PQR cell body to O₂ stimuli. By contrast, mutations in egl-19, which encodes the only Caenorhabditis elegans L-type voltage-gated Ca²(+ channel α1 subunit, recapitulate the Ca²(+ response defect we see in maco-1 mutants, although we do not see defects in localization of EGL-19. Together, our data suggest that macoilin acts in the ER to regulate assembly or

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steve Yaeli

    2010-10-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yaeli, Steve; Meir, Ron

    2010-01-01

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

  7. Social interaction with a tutor modulates responsiveness of specific auditory neurons in juvenile zebra finches.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yanagihara, Shin; Yazaki-Sugiyama, Yoko

    2018-04-12

    Behavioral states of animals, such as observing the behavior of a conspecific, modify signal perception and/or sensations that influence state-dependent higher cognitive behavior, such as learning. Recent studies have shown that neuronal responsiveness to sensory signals is modified when animals are engaged in social interactions with others or in locomotor activities. However, how these changes produce state-dependent differences in higher cognitive function is still largely unknown. Zebra finches, which have served as the premier songbird model, learn to sing from early auditory experiences with tutors. They also learn from playback of recorded songs however, learning can be greatly improved when song models are provided through social communication with tutors (Eales, 1989; Chen et al., 2016). Recently we found a subset of neurons in the higher-level auditory cortex of juvenile zebra finches that exhibit highly selective auditory responses to the tutor song after song learning, suggesting an auditory memory trace of the tutor song (Yanagihara and Yazaki-Sugiyama, 2016). Here we show that auditory responses of these selective neurons became greater when juveniles were paired with their tutors, while responses of non-selective neurons did not change. These results suggest that social interaction modulates cortical activity and might function in state-dependent song learning. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Han-Seop Kim

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The direct lineage reprogramming of somatic cells to other lineages by defined factors has led to innovative cell-fate-change approaches for providing patient-specific cells. Recent reports have demonstrated that four pluripotency factors (Oct4, Sox2, Klf4, and c-Myc are sufficient to directly reprogram fibroblasts to other specific cells, including induced neural stem cells (iNSCs. Here, we show that mouse fibroblasts can be directly reprogrammed into midbrain dopaminergic neuronal progenitors (DPs by temporal expression of the pluripotency factors and environment containing sonic hedgehog and fibroblast growth factor 8. Within thirteen days, self-renewing and functional induced DPs (iDPs were generated. Interestingly, the inhibition of both Jak and Gsk3β notably enhanced the iDP reprogramming efficiency. We confirmed the functionality of the iDPs by showing that the dopaminergic neurons generated from iDPs express midbrain markers, release dopamine, and show typical electrophysiological profiles. Our results demonstrate that the pluripotency factors-mediated direct reprogramming is an invaluable strategy for supplying functional and proliferating iDPs and may be useful for other neural progenitors required for disease modeling and cell therapies for neurodegenerative disorders.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1984-01-01

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

  10. The function of mirror neurons in the learning process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mara Daniel

    2017-01-01

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

  11. Cell-type-specific gene delivery into neuronal cells in vitro and in vivo

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Parveen, Zahida; Mukhtar, Muhammad; Rafi, Mohammed; Wenger, David A.; Siddiqui, Khwaja M.; Siler, Catherine A.; Dietzschold, Bernhard; Pomerantz, Roger J.; Schnell, Matthias J.; Dornburg, Ralph

    2003-01-01

    The avian retroviruses reticuloendotheliosis virus strain A (REV-A) and spleen necrosis virus (SNV) are not naturally infectious in human cells. However, REV-A-derived viral vectors efficiently infect human cells when they are pseudotyped with envelope proteins displaying targeting ligands specific for human cell-surface receptors. Here we report that vectors containing the gag region of REV-A and pol of SNV can be pseudotyped with the envelope protein of vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) and the glycoproteins of different rabies virus (RV) strains. Vectors pseudotyped with the envelope protein of the highly neurotropic RV strain CVS-N2c facilitated cell type-specific gene delivery into mouse and human neurons, but did not infect other human cell types. Moreover, when such vector particles were injected into the brain of newborn mice, only neuronal cells were infected in vivo. Cell-type-specific gene delivery into neurons may present quite specific gene therapy approaches for many degenerative diseases of the brain

  12. Recapitulation of spinal motor neuron-specific disease phenotypes in a human cell model of spinal muscular atrophy

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Zhi-Bo Wang; Xiaoqing Zhang; Xue-Jun Li

    2013-01-01

    Establishing human cell models of spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) to mimic motor neuron-specific phenotypes holds the key to understanding the pathogenesis of this devastating disease.Here,we developed a closely representative cell model of SMA by knocking down the disease-determining gene,survival motor neuron (SMN),in human embryonic stem cells (hESCs).Our study with this cell model demonstrated that knocking down of SMN does not interfere with neural induction or the initial specification of spinal motor neurons.Notably,the axonal outgrowth of spinal motor neurons was significantly impaired and these disease-mimicking neurons subsequently degenerated.Furthermore,these disease phenotypes were caused by SMN-full length (SMN-FL) but not SMN-A7 (lacking exon 7)knockdown,and were specific to spinal motor neurons.Restoring the expression of SMN-FL completely ameliorated all of the disease phenotypes,including specific axonal defects and motor neuron loss.Finally,knockdown of SMNFL led to excessive mitochondrial oxidative stress in human motor neuron progenitors.The involvement of oxidative stress in the degeneration of spinal motor neurons in the SMA cell model was further confirmed by the administration of N-acetylcysteine,a potent antioxidant,which prevented disease-related apoptosis and subsequent motor neuron death.Thus,we report here the successful establishment of an hESC-based SMA model,which exhibits disease gene isoform specificity,cell type specificity,and phenotype reversibility.Our model provides a unique paradigm for studying how motor neurons specifically degenerate and highlights the potential importance of antioxidants for the treatment of SMA.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-04-01

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

  14. Correlative study between neuron-specific enolase and blood sugar level in ischemic stroke patients

    OpenAIRE

    Pandey, Aparna; Saxena, Kiran; Verma, Meena; Bharosay, Anuradha

    2011-01-01

    Background: A study to investigate the level of the neurobiochemical marker, Neuron-Specific Enolase (NSE), at the time of admission and its correlation with the blood sugar level in ischemic stroke patients. Patients and Methods: We investigated 90 patients with complete stroke who were admitted to the Stroke Unit of the Department of Neurology at Sri Aurobindo Institute of Medical Sciences. NSE was measured with commercially available quantitative ′sandwich′ enzyme-linked immunosorbent assa...

  15. Functional properties of human neuronal Kv11 channels

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Einarsen, Karoline; Calloe, Kirstine; Grunnet, Morten

    2009-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hwang, Hongik; Rhim, Hyewhon

    2018-03-01

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

  17. Computational network design from functional specifications

    KAUST Repository

    Peng, Chi Han

    2016-07-11

    Connectivity and layout of underlying networks largely determine agent behavior and usage in many environments. For example, transportation networks determine the flow of traffic in a neighborhood, whereas building floorplans determine the flow of people in a workspace. Designing such networks from scratch is challenging as even local network changes can have large global effects. We investigate how to computationally create networks starting from only high-level functional specifications. Such specifications can be in the form of network density, travel time versus network length, traffic type, destination location, etc. We propose an integer programming-based approach that guarantees that the resultant networks are valid by fulfilling all the specified hard constraints and that they score favorably in terms of the objective function. We evaluate our algorithm in two different design settings, street layout and floorplans to demonstrate that diverse networks can emerge purely from high-level functional specifications.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-10-20

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-09-14

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

  20. Subtype-Specific Corticostriatal Projection Neuron Developmental Gene Expression and Corticospinal Expression of the Paroxysmal Nonkinesigenic Dyskinesia Gene

    OpenAIRE

    Xu, Zhaoying

    2016-01-01

    The mammalian neocortex is responsible for motor control, integration of sensory information, perception, cognitive function, and consciousness. It is complex, yet highly organized, with six layers containing broad classes of excitatory projection neurons (along with interneurons) with diverse subtype and area identities. Corticostriatal projection neurons (CStrPN) are the major cortical efferent neurons connecting the cerebral cortex to the striatum of the basal ganglia, and are critically i...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-05-01

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

  2. Neuron-specific regulation of class I PI3K catalytic subunits and their dysfunction in brain disorders

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christina eGross

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available The PI3K complex plays important roles in virtually all cells of the body. The enzymatic activity of PI3K to phosphorylate phosphoinositides in the membrane is mediated by a group of catalytic and regulatory subunits. Among those, the class I catalytic subunits, p110α, p110β, p110γ and p110δ, have recently drawn attention in the neuroscience field due to their specific dysregulation in diverse brain disorders. While in non-neuronal cells these catalytic subunits may have partially redundant functions, there is increasing evidence that in neurons their roles are more specialized, and confined to distinct receptor-dependent pathways. This review will summarize the emerging role of class I PI3K catalytic subunits in neurotransmitter-regulated neuronal signaling, and their dysfunction in a variety of neurological diseases, including fragile X syndrome, schizophrenia and epilepsy. We will discuss recent literature describing the use of PI3K subunit-selective inhibitors to rescue brain disease-associated phenotypes in in vitro and animal models. These studies give rise to the exciting prospect that these drugs, originally designed for cancer treatment, may be repurposed as therapeutic drugs for brain disorders in the future.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-21

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

  4. Optically-Induced Neuronal Activity Is Sufficient to Promote Functional Motor Axon Regeneration In Vivo.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia J Ward

    Full Text Available Peripheral nerve injuries are common, and functional recovery is very poor. Beyond surgical repair of the nerve, there are currently no treatment options for these patients. In experimental models of nerve injury, interventions (such as exercise and electrical stimulation that increase neuronal activity of the injured neurons effectively enhance axon regeneration. Here, we utilized optogenetics to determine whether increased activity alone is sufficient to promote motor axon regeneration. In thy-1-ChR2/YFP transgenic mice in which a subset of motoneurons express the light-sensitive cation channel, channelrhodopsin (ChR2, we activated axons in the sciatic nerve using blue light immediately prior to transection and surgical repair of the sciatic nerve. At four weeks post-injury, direct muscle EMG responses evoked with both optical and electrical stimuli as well as the ratio of these optical/electrical evoked EMG responses were significantly greater in mice that received optical treatment. Thus, significantly more ChR2+ axons successfully re-innervated the gastrocnemius muscle in mice that received optical treatment. Sections of the gastrocnemius muscles were reacted with antibodies to Synaptic Vesicle Protein 2 (SV2 to quantify the number of re-occupied motor endplates. The number of SV2+ endplates was greater in mice that received optical treatment. The number of retrogradely-labeled motoneurons following intramuscular injection of cholera toxin subunit B (conjugated to Alexa Fluor 555 was greater in mice that received optical treatment. Thus, the acute (1 hour, one-time optical treatment resulted in robust, long-lasting effects compared to untreated animals as well as untreated axons (ChR2-. We conclude that neuronal activation is sufficient to promote motor axon regeneration, and this regenerative effect is specific to the activated neurons.

  5. Facilitating Neuron-Specific Genetic Manipulations in Drosophila melanogaster Using a Split GAL4 Repressor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dolan, Michael-John; Luan, Haojiang; Shropshire, William C; Sutcliffe, Ben; Cocanougher, Benjamin; Scott, Robert L; Frechter, Shahar; Zlatic, Marta; Jefferis, Gregory S X E; White, Benjamin H

    2017-06-01

    Efforts to map neural circuits have been galvanized by the development of genetic technologies that permit the manipulation of targeted sets of neurons in the brains of freely behaving animals. The success of these efforts relies on the experimenter's ability to target arbitrarily small subsets of neurons for manipulation, but such specificity of targeting cannot routinely be achieved using existing methods. In Drosophila melanogaster , a widely-used technique for refined cell type-specific manipulation is the Split GAL4 system, which augments the targeting specificity of the binary GAL4-UAS (Upstream Activating Sequence) system by making GAL4 transcriptional activity contingent upon two enhancers, rather than one. To permit more refined targeting, we introduce here the "Killer Zipper" (KZip + ), a suppressor that makes Split GAL4 targeting contingent upon a third enhancer. KZip + acts by disrupting both the formation and activity of Split GAL4 heterodimers, and we show how this added layer of control can be used to selectively remove unwanted cells from a Split GAL4 expression pattern or to subtract neurons of interest from a pattern to determine their requirement in generating a given phenotype. To facilitate application of the KZip + technology, we have developed a versatile set of LexA op -KZip + fly lines that can be used directly with the large number of LexA driver lines with known expression patterns. KZip + significantly sharpens the precision of neuronal genetic control available in Drosophila and may be extended to other organisms where Split GAL4-like systems are used. Copyright © 2017 Dolan et al.

  6. The genesis of cerebellar GABAergic neurons: fate potential and specification mechanisms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ketty eLeto

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available The variety of neuronal phenotypes that populate the cerebellum derives from progenitors that proliferate in two germinal neuroepithelia: the ventricular zone generates GABAergic neurons, whereas the rhombic lip is the origin of glutamatergic types. Progenitors of the ventricular zone produce GABAergic projection neurons (Purkinje cells and nucleo-olivary neurons at the onset of cerebellar neurogenesis. Later on, however, these progenitors migrate into the prospective white matter, where they continue to divide up to postnatal development and generate different categories of inhibitory interneurons, according to precise spatio-temporal schedules. Projection neurons derive from discrete progenitor pools located in distinct microdomains of the ventricular zone, whereas interneurons originate from a single population of precursors, distinguished by the expression of the transcription factor Pax-2. Heterotopic/heterochronic transplantation experiments indicate that interneuron progenitors maintain full developmental potentialities up to the end of cerebellar development and acquire mature phenotypes under the influence of environmental cues present in the prospective white matter. Furthermore, the final fate choice occurs in postmitotic cells, rather than dividing progenitors. Extracerebellar cells grafted to the postnatal cerebellum are not responsive to local neurogenic cues and fail to adopt clear cerebellar identities. On the other hand, cerebellar cells grafted to extracerebellar regions retain typical phenotypes of cerebellar GABAergic interneurons, but acquire specific traits under the influence of local cues. These findings indicate that interneuron progenitors are multipotent and sensitive to spatio-temporally patterned environmental signals that regulate the genesis of different categories of interneurons, in precise quantities and at defined times and places.

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2012-01-01

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

  8. Neuron-specific knockdown of the Drosophila fat induces reduction of life span, deficient locomotive ability, shortening of motoneuron terminal branches and defects in axonal targeting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakamura, Aya; Tanaka, Ryo; Morishita, Kazushige; Yoshida, Hideki; Higuchi, Yujiro; Takashima, Hiroshi; Yamaguchi, Masamitsu

    2017-07-01

    Mutations in FAT4 gene, one of the human FAT family genes, have been identified in Van Maldergem syndrome (VMS) and Hennekam lymphangiectasia-lymphedema syndrome (HS). The FAT4 gene encodes a large protein with extracellular cadherin repeats, EGF-like domains and Laminin G-like domains. FAT4 plays a role in tumor suppression and planar cell polarity. Drosophila contains a human FAT4 homologue, fat. Drosophila fat has been mainly studied with Drosophila eye and wing systems. Here, we specially knocked down Drosophila fat in nerve system. Neuron-specific knockdown of fat shortened the life span and induced the defect in locomotive abilities of adult flies. In consistent with these phenotypes, defects in synapse structure at neuromuscular junction were observed in neuron-specific fat-knockdown flies. In addition, aberrations in axonal targeting of photoreceptor neuron in third-instar larvae were also observed, suggesting that fat involves in axonal targeting. Taken together, the results indicate that Drosophila fat plays an essential role in formation and/or maintenance of neuron. Both VMS and HS show mental retardation and neuronal defects. We therefore consider that these two rare human diseases could possibly be caused by the defect in FAT4 function in neuronal cells. © 2017 Molecular Biology Society of Japan and John Wiley & Sons Australia, Ltd.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Atif eHashmi

    2013-10-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-05-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-11-11

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-08-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-06-03

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-15

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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    2011-01-01

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

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2011-05-13

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

  17. Axial level-specific regulation of neuronal development: lessons from PITX2.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waite, Mindy R; Martin, Donna M

    2015-02-01

    Transcriptional regulation of gene expression is vital for proper control of proliferation, migration, differentiation, and survival of developing neurons. Pitx2 encodes a homeodomain transcription factor that is highly expressed in the developing and adult mammalian brain. In humans, mutations in PITX2 result in Rieger syndrome, characterized by defects in the development of the eyes, umbilicus, and teeth and variable abnormalities in the brain, including hydrocephalus and cerebellar hypoplasia. Alternative splicing of Pitx2 in the mouse results in three isoforms, Pitx2a, Pitx2b, and Pitx2c, each of which is expressed symmetrically along the left-right axis of the brain throughout development. Here, we review recent evidence for axial and brain region-specific requirements for Pitx2 during neuronal migration and differentiation, highlighting known isoform contributions. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. Enzyme specific activity in functionalized nanoporous supports

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lei Chenghong; Soares, Thereza A; Shin, Yongsoon; Liu Jun; Ackerman, Eric J

    2008-01-01

    Here we reveal that enzyme specific activity can be increased substantially by changing the protein loading density (P LD ) in functionalized nanoporous supports so that the enzyme immobilization efficiency (I e , defined as the ratio of the specific activity of the immobilized enzyme to the specific activity of the free enzyme in solution) can be much higher than 100%. A net negatively charged glucose oxidase (GOX) and a net positively charged organophosphorus hydrolase (OPH) were entrapped spontaneously in NH 2 - and HOOC-functionalized mesoporous silica (300 A, FMS) respectively. The specific activity of GOX entrapped in FMS increased with decreasing P LD . With decreasing P LD , I e of GOX in FMS increased from 150%. Unlike GOX, OPH in HOOC-FMS showed increased specific activity with increasing P LD . With increasing P LD , the corresponding I e of OPH in FMS increased from 100% to>200%. A protein structure-based analysis of the protein surface charges directing the electrostatic interaction-based orientation of the protein molecules in FMS demonstrates that substrate access to GOX molecules in FMS is limited at high P LD , consequently lowering the GOX specific activity. In contrast, substrate access to OPH molecules in FMS remains open at high P LD and may promote a more favorable confinement environment that enhances the OPH activity

  19. Dopaminergic Neuron-Specific Deletion of p53 Gene Attenuates Methamphetamine Neurotoxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Tao; Kim, Paul P; Greig, Nigel H; Luo, Yu

    2017-08-01

    p53 plays an essential role in the regulation of cell death in dopaminergic (DA) neurons and its activation has been implicated in the neurotoxic effects of methamphetamine (MA). However, how p53 mediates MA neurotoxicity remains largely unknown. In this study, we examined the effect of DA-specific p53 gene deletion in DAT-p53KO mice. Whereas in vivo MA binge exposure reduced locomotor activity in wild-type (WT) mice, this was significantly attenuated in DAT-p53KO mice and associated with significant differences in the levels of the p53 target genes BAX and p21 between WT and DAT-p53KO. Notably, DA-specific deletion of p53 provided protection of substantia nigra pars reticulata (SNpr) tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) positive fibers following binge MA, with DAT-p53KO mice having less decline of TH protein levels in striatum versus WT mice. Whereas DAT-p53KO mice demonstrated a consistently higher density of TH fibers in striatum compared to WT mice at 10 days after MA exposure, DA neuron counts within the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNpc) were similar. Finally, supportive of these results, administration of a p53-specific inhibitor (PFT-α) provided a similarly protective effect on MA binge-induced behavioral deficits. Neither DA specific p53 deletion nor p53 pharmacological inhibition affected hyperthermia induced by MA binge. These findings demonstrate a specific contribution of p53 activation in behavioral deficits and DA neuronal terminal loss by MA binge exposure.

  20. Brn3a regulates neuronal subtype specification in the trigeminal ganglion by promoting Runx expression during sensory differentiation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raisa Eng S

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The transcription factor Brn3a, product of the pou4f1 gene, is expressed in most sensory neurons throughout embryogenesis. Prior work has demonstrated a role for Brn3a in the repression of early neurogenic genes; here we describe a second major role for Brn3a in the specification of sensory subtypes in the trigeminal ganglion (TG. Sensory neurons initially co-express multiple Trk-family neurotrophin receptors, but are later marked by the unique expression of TrkA, TrkB or TrkC. Maturation of these sensory subtypes is known to depend on the expression of Runx transcription factors. Newborn Brn3a knockout mice fail to express TrkC, which is associated in the TG with mechanoreceptors, plus a set of functional genes associated with nociceptor subtypes. In embryonic Brn3a-/- ganglia, the normal expression of Runx3 is never initiated in TrkC+ neurons, and Runx1 expression is greatly attenuated in TrkA+ nociceptors. These changes are accompanied by expanded expression of TrkB in neurons that abnormally express multiple Trks, followed by the loss of TrkC and TrkA expression. In transgenic embryos expressing a Brn3a-VP16 dominant transactivator, Runx3 mRNA expression is increased, suggesting that it is a direct regulatory target of Brn3a. Chromatin immunoprecipitation confirms that Brn3a binds in vivo to a conserved upstream enhancer element within histone H3-acetylated chromatin in the Runx3 locus. Together these data show that Brn3a acts upstream of the Runx factors, which then repress TrkB expression to allow establishment of the non-overlapping Trk receptor profiles and correct terminally differentiated phenotypes.

  1. Morphological changes in different populations of bladder afferent neurons detected by herpes simplex virus (HSV) vectors with cell-type-specific promoters in mice with spinal cord injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimizu, Nobutaka; Doyal, Mark F; Goins, William F; Kadekawa, Katsumi; Wada, Naoki; Kanai, Anthony J; de Groat, William C; Hirayama, Akihide; Uemura, Hirotsugu; Glorioso, Joseph C; Yoshimura, Naoki

    2017-11-19

    Functional and morphological changes in C-fiber bladder afferent pathways are reportedly involved in neurogenic detrusor overactivity (NDO) after spinal cord injury (SCI). This study examined the morphological changes in different populations of bladder afferent neurons after SCI using replication-defective herpes simplex virus (HSV) vectors encoding the mCherry reporter driven by neuronal cell-type-specific promoters. Spinal intact (SI) and SCI mice were injected into the bladder wall with HSV mCherry vectors driven by the cytomegalovirus (CMV) promoter, CGRP promoter, TRPV1 promoter or neurofilament 200 (NF200) promoter. Two weeks after vector inoculation into the bladder wall, L1 and L6 dorsal root ganglia (DRG) were removed bilaterally for immunofluorescent staining using anti-mCherry antibody. The number of CMV promoter vector-labeled neurons was not altered after SCI. The number of CGRP and TRPV1 promoter vector-labeled neurons was significantly increased whereas the number of NF200 vector-labeled neurons was decreased in L6 DRG after SCI. The median size of CGRP promoter-labeled C-fiber neurons was increased from 247.0 in SI mice to 271.3μm 2 in SCI mice whereas the median cell size of TRPV1 promoter vector-labeled neurons was decreased from 245.2 in SI mice to 216.5μm 2 in SCI mice. CGRP and TRPV1 mRNA levels of laser-captured bladder afferent neurons labeled with Fast Blue were significantly increased in SCI mice compared to SI mice. Thus, using a novel HSV vector-mediated neuronal labeling technique, we found that SCI induces expansion of the CGRP- and TRPV1-expressing C-fiber cell population, which could contribute to C-fiber afferent hyperexcitability and NDO after SCI. Copyright © 2017 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander eGarthe

    2013-05-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-11-26

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1996-09-01

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

  6. Immunoreactive neuron-specific enolase (NSE) is expressed in testicular carcinoma-in-situ

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kang, J L; Rajpert-De Meyts, E; Skakkebaek, N E

    1996-01-01

    Neuron-specific enolase (NSE) is a well-known marker of tumours that have neuroendocrine origin. High levels of NSE have also been described in various types of testicular germ cell neoplasms, particularly in seminomas. To evaluate the presence of NSE in testicular carcinoma-in situ (CIS), a prei...... are evidence against a relationship between NSE and N-myc in testicular germ cell tumours. The high expression of NSE in CIS and overt germ cell tumours may be due to the increased gene dosage effect associated with the overrepresentation of isochromosome 12p....

  7. Neuron-specific chromatin remodeling: a missing link in epigenetic mechanisms underlying synaptic plasticity, memory, and intellectual disability disorders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vogel-Ciernia, Annie; Wood, Marcelo A

    2014-05-01

    Long-term memory formation requires the coordinated regulation of gene expression. Until recently nucleosome remodeling, one of the major epigenetic mechanisms for controlling gene expression, had been largely unexplored in the field of neuroscience. Nucleosome remodeling is carried out by chromatin remodeling complexes (CRCs) that interact with DNA and histones to physically alter chromatin structure and ultimately regulate gene expression. Human exome sequencing and gene wide association studies have linked mutations in CRC subunits to intellectual disability disorders, autism spectrum disorder and schizophrenia. However, how mutations in CRC subunits were related to human cognitive disorders was unknown. There appears to be both developmental and adult specific roles for the neuron specific CRC nBAF (neuronal Brg1/hBrm Associated Factor). nBAF regulates gene expression required for dendritic arborization during development, and in the adult, contributes to long-term potentiation, a form of synaptic plasticity, and long-term memory. We propose that the nBAF complex is a novel epigenetic mechanism for regulating transcription required for long-lasting forms of synaptic plasticity and memory processes and that impaired nBAF function may result in human cognitive disorders. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Neuronal Functions of Activators of G Protein Signaling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Man K. Tse

    2012-05-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prager-Khoutorsky, Masha; Bourque, Charles W

    2010-02-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Llinas, Rodolfo R.

    1988-12-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Siebler Mario

    2009-08-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Zengrong; Bhat, Krishna Moorthi

    2011-01-01

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

  15. Serum neuron specific enolase - a novel indicator for neuropsychiatric systemic lupus erythematosus?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawro, T; Bogucki, A; Krupińska-Kun, M; Maurer, M; Woźniacka, A

    2015-12-01

    Neuropsychiatric (NP) lupus, a common manifestation of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), is still insufficiently understood, in part, because of the lack of specific biomarkers. Neuron specific enolase (NSE), an important neuronal glycolytic enzyme, shows increased serum levels following acute brain injury, and decreased serum levels in several chronic disorders of the nervous system, including multi infarct dementia, multiple sclerosis and depression. The aim of the study was to evaluate serum NSE levels in SLE patients with and without nervous system involvement, and in healthy controls, and to assess the correlation of NSE serum levels of patients with neuropsychiatric systemic lupus erythematosus (NPSLE) with clinical parameters. The study comprised 47 SLE patients and 28 controls. SLE activity was assessed using the Systemic Lupus Activity Measure (SLAM). A neurologist and a psychiatrist examined all patients. NP involvement was diagnosed according to strict NPSLE criteria proposed by Ainiala and coworkers, as modification to American College of Rheumatology (ACR) nomenclature and case definitions. NSE serum levels were determined by use of an immunoassay. Mean NSE serum concentrations in patients with NPSLE were significantly lower than in non-NPSLE patients (6.3 ± 2.6 µg/L vs. 9.7 ± 3.3 µg/L, p < 0.01) and in controls (8.8 ± 3.3 µg/L, p < 0.05). There were significant negative correlations between NSE serum levels and SLE activity (r = -0.42, p < 0.05) and the number of NPSLE manifestations diagnosed (-0.37; p = 0.001). Decreased serum concentrations of NSE may reflect chronic neuronal damage with declined metabolism of the nervous tissue in patients with NPSLE. © The Author(s) 2015.

  16. Three Types of Cortical L5 Neurons that Differ in Brain-Wide Connectivity and Function

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Cortical layer 5 (L5) pyramidal neurons integrate inputs from many sources and distribute outputs to cortical and subcortical structures. Previous studies demonstrate two L5 pyramid types: cortico-cortical (CC) and cortico-subcortical (CS). We characterize connectivity and function of these cell types in mouse primary visual cortex and reveal a new subtype. Unlike previously described L5 CC and CS neurons, this new subtype does not project to striatum [cortico-cortical, non-striatal (CC-NS)] and has distinct morphology, physiology and visual responses. Monosynaptic rabies tracing reveals that CC neurons preferentially receive input from higher visual areas, while CS neurons receive more input from structures implicated in top-down modulation of brain states. CS neurons are also more direction-selective and prefer faster stimuli than CC neurons. These differences suggest distinct roles as specialized output channels, with CS neurons integrating information and generating responses more relevant to movement control and CC neurons being more important in visual perception. PMID:26671462

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-12-16

    Cortical layer 5 (L5) pyramidal neurons integrate inputs from many sources and distribute outputs to cortical and subcortical structures. Previous studies demonstrate two L5 pyramid types: cortico-cortical (CC) and cortico-subcortical (CS). We characterize connectivity and function of these cell types in mouse primary visual cortex and reveal a new subtype. Unlike previously described L5 CC and CS neurons, this new subtype does not project to striatum [cortico-cortical, non-striatal (CC-NS)] and has distinct morphology, physiology, and visual responses. Monosynaptic rabies tracing reveals that CC neurons preferentially receive input from higher visual areas, while CS neurons receive more input from structures implicated in top-down modulation of brain states. CS neurons are also more direction-selective and prefer faster stimuli than CC neurons. These differences suggest distinct roles as specialized output channels, with CS neurons integrating information and generating responses more relevant to movement control and CC neurons being more important in visual perception. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zabel Claus

    2011-09-01

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

  19. Space shuttle configuration accounting functional design specification

    Science.gov (United States)

    1974-01-01

    An analysis is presented of the requirements for an on-line automated system which must be capable of tracking the status of requirements and engineering changes and of providing accurate and timely records. The functional design specification provides the definition, description, and character length of the required data elements and the interrelationship of data elements to adequately track, display, and report the status of active configuration changes. As changes to the space shuttle program levels II and III configuration are proposed, evaluated, and dispositioned, it is the function of the configuration management office to maintain records regarding changes to the baseline and to track and report the status of those changes. The configuration accounting system will consist of a combination of computers, computer terminals, software, and procedures, all of which are designed to store, retrieve, display, and process information required to track proposed and proved engineering changes to maintain baseline documentation of the space shuttle program levels II and III.

  20. Correlative study between neuron-specific enolase and blood sugar level in ischemic stroke patients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aparna Pandey

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: A study to investigate the level of the neurobiochemical marker, Neuron-Specific Enolase (NSE, at the time of admission and its correlation with the blood sugar level in ischemic stroke patients. Patients and Methods: We investigated 90 patients with complete stroke who were admitted to the Stroke Unit of the Department of Neurology at Sri Aurobindo Institute of Medical Sciences. NSE was measured with commercially available quantitative ′sandwich′ enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay kits obtained from R and D Systems. Hyperglycemia was defined as blood glucose concentration ≥ 7 mmol / L, and measured using the glucose oxidase method immediately. Results: Significantly increased NSE and lipid profile levels were found in ischemic stroke patients as compared to the control. Hyperglycemic ischemic stroke patients had increased levels of NSE, lipid profile, and National Institute of Health stroke scale scores (NIHSS score compared to normoglycemic ischemic stroke patients. In addition the serum NSE level of hyperglycemic stroke patients was also positively correlated with the blood sugar level (r = 0.734 P < 0.001. Conclusions: Hyperglycemia predicts an increased risk of poor outcome after ischemic stroke and it is reflected by a significantly increased level of Neuron-Specific Enolase.

  1. Speech-specific tuning of neurons in human superior temporal gyrus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Alexander M; Dykstra, Andrew R; Jayaram, Vinay; Leonard, Matthew K; Travis, Katherine E; Gygi, Brian; Baker, Janet M; Eskandar, Emad; Hochberg, Leigh R; Halgren, Eric; Cash, Sydney S

    2014-10-01

    How the brain extracts words from auditory signals is an unanswered question. We recorded approximately 150 single and multi-units from the left anterior superior temporal gyrus of a patient during multiple auditory experiments. Against low background activity, 45% of units robustly fired to particular spoken words with little or no response to pure tones, noise-vocoded speech, or environmental sounds. Many units were tuned to complex but specific sets of phonemes, which were influenced by local context but invariant to speaker, and suppressed during self-produced speech. The firing of several units to specific visual letters was correlated with their response to the corresponding auditory phonemes, providing the first direct neural evidence for phonological recoding during reading. Maximal decoding of individual phonemes and words identities was attained using firing rates from approximately 5 neurons within 200 ms after word onset. Thus, neurons in human superior temporal gyrus use sparse spatially organized population encoding of complex acoustic-phonetic features to help recognize auditory and visual words. © The Author 2013. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  2. Specification of spatial identities of cerebellar neuron progenitors by ptf1a and atoh1 for proper production of GABAergic and glutamatergic neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamada, Mayumi; Seto, Yusuke; Taya, Shinichiro; Owa, Tomoo; Inoue, Yukiko U; Inoue, Takayoshi; Kawaguchi, Yoshiya; Nabeshima, Yo-Ichi; Hoshino, Mikio

    2014-04-02

    In the cerebellum, the bHLH transcription factors Ptf1a and Atoh1 are expressed in distinct neuroepithelial regions, the ventricular zone (VZ) and the rhombic lip (RL), and are required for producing GABAergic and glutamatergic neurons, respectively. However, it is unclear whether Ptf1a or Atoh1 is sufficient for specifying GABAergic or glutamatergic neuronal fates. To test this, we generated two novel knock-in mouse lines, Ptf1a(Atoh1) and Atoh1(Ptf1a), that are designed to express Atoh1 and Ptf1a ectopically in the VZ and RL, respectively. In Ptf1a(Atoh1) embryos, ectopically Atoh1-expressing VZ cells produced glutamatergic neurons, including granule cells and deep cerebellar nuclei neurons. Correspondingly, in Atoh1(Ptf1a) animals, ectopically Ptf1a-expressing RL cells produced GABAergic populations, such as Purkinje cells and GABAergic interneurons. Consistent results were also obtained from in utero electroporation of Ptf1a or Atoh1 into embryonic cerebella, suggesting that Ptf1a and Atoh1 are essential and sufficient for GABAergic versus glutamatergic specification in the neuroepithelium. Furthermore, birthdating analyses with BrdU in the knock-in mice or with electroporation studies showed that ectopically produced fate-changed neuronal types were generated at temporal schedules closely simulating those of the wild-type RL and VZ, suggesting that the VZ and RL share common temporal information. Observations of knock-in brains as well as electroporated brains revealed that Ptf1a and Atoh1 mutually negatively regulate their expression, probably contributing to formation of non-overlapping neuroepithelial domains. These findings suggest that Ptf1a and Atoh1 specify spatial identities of cerebellar neuron progenitors in the neuroepithelium, leading to appropriate production of GABAergic and glutamatergic neurons, respectively.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sakamoto, Masayuki; Kageyama, Ryoichiro; Imayoshi, Itaru

    2014-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Masayuki eSakamoto

    2014-05-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-05-26

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

  6. Targeting Neurotrophins to Specific Populations of Neurons: NGF, BDNF, and NT-3 and Their Relevance for Treatment of Spinal Cord Injury

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kathleen M. Keefe

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Neurotrophins are a family of proteins that regulate neuronal survival, synaptic function, and neurotransmitter release, and elicit the plasticity and growth of axons within the adult central and peripheral nervous system. Since the 1950s, these factors have been extensively studied in traumatic injury models. Here we review several members of the classical family of neurotrophins, the receptors they bind to, and their contribution to axonal regeneration and sprouting of sensory and motor pathways after spinal cord injury (SCI. We focus on nerve growth factor (NGF, brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF, and neurotrophin-3 (NT-3, and their effects on populations of neurons within diverse spinal tracts. Understanding the cellular targets of neurotrophins and the responsiveness of specific neuronal populations will allow for the most efficient treatment strategies in the injured spinal cord.

  7. Targeting Neurotrophins to Specific Populations of Neurons: NGF, BDNF, and NT-3 and Their Relevance for Treatment of Spinal Cord Injury

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keefe, Kathleen M.; Sheikh, Imran S.; Smith, George M.

    2017-01-01

    Neurotrophins are a family of proteins that regulate neuronal survival, synaptic function, and neurotransmitter release, and elicit the plasticity and growth of axons within the adult central and peripheral nervous system. Since the 1950s, these factors have been extensively studied in traumatic injury models. Here we review several members of the classical family of neurotrophins, the receptors they bind to, and their contribution to axonal regeneration and sprouting of sensory and motor pathways after spinal cord injury (SCI). We focus on nerve growth factor (NGF), brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), and neurotrophin-3 (NT-3), and their effects on populations of neurons within diverse spinal tracts. Understanding the cellular targets of neurotrophins and the responsiveness of specific neuronal populations will allow for the most efficient treatment strategies in the injured spinal cord. PMID:28273811

  8. Targeting Neurotrophins to Specific Populations of Neurons: NGF, BDNF, and NT-3 and Their Relevance for Treatment of Spinal Cord Injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keefe, Kathleen M; Sheikh, Imran S; Smith, George M

    2017-03-03

    Neurotrophins are a family of proteins that regulate neuronal survival, synaptic function, and neurotransmitter release, and elicit the plasticity and growth of axons within the adult central and peripheral nervous system. Since the 1950s, these factors have been extensively studied in traumatic injury models. Here we review several members of the classical family of neurotrophins, the receptors they bind to, and their contribution to axonal regeneration and sprouting of sensory and motor pathways after spinal cord injury (SCI). We focus on nerve growth factor (NGF), brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), and neurotrophin-3 (NT-3), and their effects on populations of neurons within diverse spinal tracts. Understanding the cellular targets of neurotrophins and the responsiveness of specific neuronal populations will allow for the most efficient treatment strategies in the injured spinal cord.

  9. Increased histone H3 phosphorylation in neurons in specific brain structures after induction of status epilepticus in mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tetsuji Mori

    Full Text Available Status epilepticus (SE induces pathological and morphological changes in the brain. Recently, it has become clear that excessive neuronal excitation, stress and drug abuse induce chromatin remodeling in neurons, thereby altering gene expression. Chromatin remodeling is a key mechanism of epigenetic gene regulation. Histone H3 phosphorylation is frequently used as a marker of chromatin remodeling and is closely related to the upregulation of mRNA transcription. In the present study, we analyzed H3 phosphorylation levels in vivo using immunohistochemistry in the brains of mice with pilocarpine-induced SE. A substantial increase in H3 phosphorylation was detected in neurons in specific brain structures. Increased H3 phosphorylation was dependent on neuronal excitation. In particular, a robust upregulation of H3 phosphorylation was detected in the caudate putamen, and there was a gradient of phosphorylated H3(+ (PH3(+ neurons along the medio-lateral axis. After unilateral ablation of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra by injection of 6-hydroxydopamine, the distribution of PH3(+ neurons changed in the caudate putamen. Moreover, our histological analysis suggested that, in addition to the well-known MSK1 (mitogen and stress-activated kinase/H3 phosphorylation/c-fos pathway, other signaling pathways were also activated. Together, our findings suggest that a number of genes involved in the pathology of epileptogenesis are upregulated in PH3(+ brain regions, and that H3 phosphorylation is a suitable indicator of strong neuronal excitation.

  10. The causal role of category-specific neuronal representations in the left ventral premotor cortex (PMv) in semantic processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cattaneo, Zaira; Devlin, Joseph T; Salvini, Francesca; Vecchi, Tomaso; Silvanto, Juha

    2010-02-01

    The left ventral premotor cortex (PMv) is preferentially activated by exemplars of tools, suggestive of category specificity in this region. Here we used state-dependent transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to investigate the causal role of such category-specific neuronal representations in the encoding of tool words. Priming to a category name (either "Tool" or "Animal") was used with the objective of modulating the initial activation state of this region prior to application of TMS and the presentation of the target stimulus. When the target word was an exemplar of the "Tool" category, the effects of TMS applied over PMv (but not PMd) interacted with priming history by facilitating reaction times on incongruent trials while not affecting congruent trials. This congruency/TMS interaction implies that the "Tool" and "Animal" primes had a differential effect on the initial activation state of the left PMv and implies that this region is one neural locus of category-specific behavioral priming for the "Tool" category. TMS applied over PMv had no behavioral effect when the target stimulus was an exemplar of the "Animal" category, regardless of whether the target word was congruent or incongruent with the prime. That TMS applied over the left PMv interacted with a priming effect that extended from the category name ("Tool") to exemplars of that category suggests that this region contains neuronal representation associated with a specific semantic category. Our results also demonstrate that the state-dependent effects obtained in the combination of visual priming and TMS are useful in the study of higher-level cognitive functions. Copyright (c) 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-07-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-02-04

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

  13. Detection of neuronal tissue in meat using tissue specific DNA modifications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Harris N.

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available A method has been developed to differentiate between non-muscle tissues such as liver, kidney and heart and that of muscle in meat samples using tissue specific DNA detection. Only muscle tissue is considered meat from the point of view of labelling (Food Labelling [Amendment] (England Regulations 2003 and Quantitative Ingredient Declaration (QUID, and also certain parts of the carcass are prohibited to be used in raw meat products (Meat Products [England] Regulations 2003. Included in the prohibited offal are brain and spinal cord. The described methodology has therefore been developed primarily to enforce labelling rules but also to contribute to the enforcement of BSE legislation on the detection of Central Nervous System (CNS tissue. The latter requires the removal of Specified Risk Material (SRM, such as bovine and ovine brain and spinal cord, from the food chain. Current methodologies for detection of CNS tissue include histological examination, analysis of cholesterol content and immunodetection. These can potentially be time consuming, less applicable to processed samples and may not be readily adapted to high throughput sample analysis. The objective of this work was therefore to develop a DNAbased detection assay that exploits the sensitivity and specificity of PCR and is potentially applicable to more highly processed food samples. For neuronal tissue, the DNA target selected was the promoter for Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein (GFAP, a gene whose expression is restricted to astroglial cells within CNS tissue. The promoter fragments from both cattle and sheep have been isolated and key differences in the methylation patterns of certain CpG dinucleotides in the sequences from bovine and sheep brain and spinal cord and the corresponding skeletal muscle identified. These have been used to design a PCR assay exploiting Methylation Specific PCR (MSP to specifically amplify the neuronal tissue derived sequence and therefore identify the

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hui Hong

    2018-06-01

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

  15. Drugs of abuse specifically sensitize noradrenergic and serotonergic neurons via a non-dopaminergic mechanism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lanteri, Christophe; Salomon, Lucas; Torrens, Yvette; Glowinski, Jacques; Tassin, Jean-Pol

    2008-06-01

    A challenge in drug dependence is to delineate long-term neurochemical modifications induced by drugs of abuse. Repeated d-amphetamine was recently shown to disrupt a mutual regulatory link between noradrenergic and serotonergic neurons, thus inducing long-term increased responses to d-amphetamine and para-chloroamphetamine, respectively. We show here that such a sensitization of noradrenergic and serotonergic neurons also occurs following repeated treatment with cocaine, morphine, or alcohol, three compounds belonging to main groups of addictive substances. In all cases, this sensitization is prevented by alpha 1b-adrenergic and 5-HT2A receptors blockade, indicating the critical role of these receptors on long-term effects of drugs of abuse. However, repeated treatments with two non-addictive antidepressants, venlafaxine, and clorimipramine, which nevertheless inhibit noradrenergic and serotonergic reuptake, do not induce noradrenergic and serotonergic neurons sensitization. Similarly, this sensitization does not occur following repeated treatments with a specific inhibitor of dopamine (DA) reuptake, GBR12783. Moreover, we show that the effects of SCH23390, a D1 receptor antagonist known to inhibit development of d-amphetamine behavioral sensitization, are due to its 5-HT2C receptor agonist property. SCH23390 blocks amphetamine-induced release of norepinephrine and RS102221, a 5-HT2C antagonist, can reverse this inhibition as well as inhibition of noradrenergic sensitization and development of behavioral sensitization induced by repeated d-amphetamine. We propose that noradrenergic/serotonergic uncoupling is a common neurochemical consequence of repeated consumption of drugs of abuse, unrelated with DA release. Our data also suggest that compounds able to restore the link between noradrenergic and serotonergic modulatory systems could represent important therapeutic targets for investigation.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Duan Shukai; Liao Xiaofeng

    2007-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hu Lu

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon Kidd

    2015-05-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alison Wood-Kaczmar

    2008-06-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-02-01

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

  1. Substance P Activates Ca2+-Permeable Nonselective Cation Channels through a Phosphatidylcholine-Specific Phospholipase C Signaling Pathway in nNOS-Expressing GABAergic Neurons in Visual Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Endo, Toshiaki; Yanagawa, Yuchio; Komatsu, Yukio

    2016-02-01

    To understand the functions of the neocortex, it is essential to characterize the properties of neurons constituting cortical circuits. Here, we focused on a distinct group of GABAergic neurons that are defined by a specific colocalization of intense labeling for both neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) and substance P (SP) receptor [neurokinin 1 (NK1) receptors]. We investigated the mechanisms of the SP actions on these neurons in visual cortical slices obtained from young glutamate decarboxylase 67-green fluorescent protein knock-in mice. Bath application of SP induced a nonselective cation current leading to depolarization that was inhibited by the NK1 antagonists in nNOS-immunopositive neurons. Ruthenium red and La(3+), transient receptor potential (TRP) channel blockers, suppressed the SP-induced current. The SP-induced current was mediated by G proteins and suppressed by D609, an inhibitor of phosphatidylcholine-specific phospholipase C (PC-PLC), but not by inhibitors of phosphatidylinositol-specific PLC, adenylate cyclase or Src tyrosine kinases. Ca(2+) imaging experiments under voltage clamp showed that SP induced a rise in intracellular Ca(2+) that was abolished by removal of extracellular Ca(2+) but not by depletion of intracellular Ca(2+) stores. These results suggest that SP regulates nNOS neurons by activating TRP-like Ca(2+)-permeable nonselective cation channels through a PC-PLC-dependent signaling pathway. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  2. Brain-specific Foxp1 deletion impairs neuronal development and causes autistic-like behaviour.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bacon, C; Schneider, M; Le Magueresse, C; Froehlich, H; Sticht, C; Gluch, C; Monyer, H; Rappold, G A

    2015-05-01

    Neurodevelopmental disorders are multi-faceted and can lead to intellectual disability, autism spectrum disorder and language impairment. Mutations in the Forkhead box FOXP1 gene have been linked to all these disorders, suggesting that it may play a central role in various cognitive and social processes. To understand the role of Foxp1 in the context of neurodevelopment leading to alterations in cognition and behaviour, we generated mice with a brain-specific Foxp1 deletion (Nestin-Cre(Foxp1-/-)mice). The mutant mice were viable and allowed for the first time the analysis of pre- and postnatal neurodevelopmental phenotypes, which included a pronounced disruption of the developing striatum and more subtle alterations in the hippocampus. More detailed analysis in the CA1 region revealed abnormal neuronal morphogenesis that was associated with reduced excitability and an imbalance of excitatory to inhibitory input in CA1 hippocampal neurons in Nestin-Cre(Foxp1-/-) mice. Foxp1 ablation was also associated with various cognitive and social deficits, providing new insights into its behavioural importance.

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

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    Friedrich, Johannes; Urbanczik, Robert; Senn, Walter

    2014-08-01

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

  4. Neuron- specific enolase level in patients with metabolic syndrome and its value forecasting acute stroke

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    Oral Ospanov

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Background Patients with metabolic syndrome are at a greater risk of experiencing a cerebrovascular event. Several studies show that patients with metabolic syndrome have asymptomatic ischemic brain injury. In this case, there is a need for rapid determination of asymptomatic brain lesions and prediction of acute stroke. Aims The aim of the study was to determine the neuron-specific enolase (NSE serum level in patients with metabolic syndrome and the value of this level for forecasting acute stroke. Methods The study used the following information to determine metabolic syndrome: waist circumference, total cholesterol, triglycerides, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, blood pressure, and blood glucose. Doppler sonography mapping of the brachiocephalic trunk was held to determine the percentage of the carotid artery stenosis. To determine asymptomatic ischemic brain injury, the NSE serum marker was measured. Statistical processing of the measurements was performed using the H test and the Mann–Whitney test. The possible link between MS and NSE were determined by logistic regression analysis. Mathematical modeling was performed using logistic regression. Results There are statistically significant differences in NSE concentrations in groups with metabolic syndrome and ischemic stroke patients. This assertion is confirmed by logistic regression analysis, which revealed the existence of a relationship between metabolic syndrome and increased concentration of NSE. Conclusion Patients with metabolic syndrome have an increased concentration of NSE. This indicates the presence of asymptomatic ischemic neuronal damage. A prognostic model for determining the probability that patients with metabolic syndrome will have an acute stroke was developed.

  5. Prion propagation and toxicity occur in vitro with two-phase kinetics specific to strain and neuronal type.

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    Hannaoui, Samia; Maatouk, Layal; Privat, Nicolas; Levavasseur, Etienne; Faucheux, Baptiste A; Haïk, Stéphane

    2013-03-01

    Prion diseases, or transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs), are fatal neurodegenerative disorders that occur in humans and animals. The neuropathological hallmarks of TSEs are spongiosis, glial proliferation, and neuronal loss. The only known specific molecular marker of TSEs is the abnormal isoform (PrP(Sc)) of the host-encoded prion protein (PrP(C)), which accumulates in the brain of infected subjects and forms infectious prion particles. Although this transmissible agent lacks a specific nucleic acid component, several prion strains have been isolated. Prion strains are characterized by differences in disease outcome, PrP(Sc) distribution patterns, and brain lesion profiles at the terminal stage of the disease. The molecular factors and cellular mechanisms involved in strain-specific neuronal tropism and toxicity remain largely unknown. Currently, no cellular model exists to facilitate in vitro studies of these processes. A few cultured cell lines that maintain persistent scrapie infections have been developed, but only two of them have shown the cytotoxic effects associated with prion propagation. In this study, we have developed primary neuronal cultures to assess in vitro neuronal tropism and toxicity of different prion strains (scrapie strains 139A, ME7, and 22L). We have tested primary neuronal cultures enriched in cerebellar granular, striatal, or cortical neurons. Our results showed that (i) a strain-specific neuronal tropism operated in vitro; (ii) the cytotoxic effect varied among strains and neuronal cell types; (iii) prion propagation and toxicity occurred in two kinetic phases, a replicative phase followed by a toxic phase; and (iv) neurotoxicity peaked when abnormal PrP accumulation reached a plateau.

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

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    Yan Zhao

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

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

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    Schwartz, Gary J.; Zeltser, Lori M.

    2014-01-01

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

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

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    Mohr, Margaret A; Sisk, Cheryl L

    2013-03-19

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

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

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

    2018-03-01

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

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

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    Li Zhou

    2017-03-01

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

  11. Energy metabolism in astrocytes and neurons treated with manganese: relation among cell-specific energy failure, glucose metabolism, and intercellular trafficking using multinuclear NMR-spectroscopic analysis.

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    Zwingmann, Claudia; Leibfritz, Dieter; Hazell, Alan S

    2003-06-01

    A central question in manganese neurotoxicity concerns mitochondrial dysfunction leading to cerebral energy failure. To obtain insight into the underlying mechanism(s), the authors investigated cell-specific pathways of [1-13C]glucose metabolism by high-resolution multinuclear NMR-spectroscopy. Five-day treatment of neurons with 100-micro mol/L MnCl(2) led to 50% and 70% decreases of ATP/ADP and phosphocreatine-creatine ratios, respectively. An impaired flux of [1-13C]glucose through pyruvate dehydrogenase, which was associated with Krebs cycle inhibition and hence depletion of [4-13C]glutamate, [2-13C]GABA, and [13C]glutathione, hindered the ability of neurons to compensate for mitochondrial dysfunction by oxidative glucose metabolism and further aggravated neuronal energy failure. Stimulated glycolysis and oxidative glucose metabolism protected astrocytes against energy failure and oxidative stress, leading to twofold increased de novo synthesis of [3-13C]lactate and fourfold elevated [4-13C]glutamate and [13C]glutathione levels. Manganese, however, inhibited the synthesis and release of glutamine. Comparative NMR data obtained from cocultures showed disturbed astrocytic function and a failure of astrocytes to provide neurons with substrates for energy and neurotransmitter metabolism, leading to deterioration of neuronal antioxidant capacity (decreased glutathione levels) and energy metabolism. The results suggest that, concomitant to impaired neuronal glucose oxidation, changes in astrocytic metabolism may cause a loss of intercellular homeostatic equilibrium, contributing to neuronal dysfunction in manganese neurotoxicity.

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

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    Fu-Lei Tang

    2015-09-01

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

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

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

    2016-04-29

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

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

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    Wang, Xiaowan; Li, Hailong; Ding, Shinghua

    2014-01-01

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

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

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    Qian-Kun Yang

    2013-01-01

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

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

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

    2017-09-01

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

  17. Neuron-Type-Specific Utility in a Brain-Machine Interface: a Pilot Study.

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    Garcia-Garcia, Martha G; Bergquist, Austin J; Vargas-Perez, Hector; Nagai, Mary K; Zariffa, Jose; Marquez-Chin, Cesar; Popovic, Milos R

    2017-11-01

    Firing rates of single cortical neurons can be volitionally modulated through biofeedback (i.e. operant conditioning), and this information can be transformed to control external devices (i.e. brain-machine interfaces; BMIs). However, not all neurons respond to operant conditioning in BMI implementation. Establishing criteria that predict neuron utility will assist translation of BMI research to clinical applications. Single cortical neurons (n=7) were recorded extracellularly from primary motor cortex of a Long-Evans rat. Recordings were incorporated into a BMI involving up-regulation of firing rate to control the brightness of a light-emitting-diode and subsequent reward. Neurons were classified as 'fast-spiking', 'bursting' or 'regular-spiking' according to waveform-width and intrinsic firing patterns. Fast-spiking and bursting neurons were found to up-regulate firing rate by a factor of 2.43±1.16, demonstrating high utility, while regular-spiking neurons decreased firing rates on average by a factor of 0.73±0.23, demonstrating low utility. The ability to select neurons with high utility will be important to minimize training times and maximize information yield in future clinical BMI applications. The highly contrasting utility observed between fast-spiking and bursting neurons versus regular-spiking neurons allows for the hypothesis to be advanced that intrinsic electrophysiological properties may be useful criteria that predict neuron utility in BMI implementation.

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

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

    2002-04-01

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

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

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

    2017-09-01

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

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

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    Igor Ferraz da Silva

    2018-01-01

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

  1. Adolescent maturation of inhibitory inputs onto cingulate cortex neurons is cell-type specific and TrkB dependent

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    Angela eVandenberg

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available The maturation of inhibitory circuits during adolescence may be tied to the onset of mental health disorders such as schizophrenia. Neurotrophin signaling likely plays a critical role in supporting inhibitory circuit development and is also implicated in psychiatric disease. Within the neocortex, subcircuits may mature at different times and show differential sensitivity to neurotrophin signaling. We measured miniature inhibitory and excitatory postsynaptic currents (mIPSC and mEPSCs in Layer 5 cell-types in the mouse anterior cingulate across the periadolescent period. We differentiated cell-types mainly by Thy1 YFP transgene expression and also retrobead injection labeling in the contralateral cingulate and ipsilateral pons. We found that YFP- neurons and commissural projecting neurons had lower frequency of mIPSCs than neighboring YFP+ neurons or pons projecting neurons in juvenile mice (P21-25. YFP- neurons and to a lesser extent commissural projecting neurons also showed a significant increase in mIPSC amplitude during the periadolescent period (P21-25 vs. P40-50, which was not seen in YFP+ neurons or pons projecting neurons. Systemic disruption of tyrosine kinase receptor B (TrkB signaling during P23-50 in TrkBF616A mice blocked developmental changes in mIPSC amplitude, without affecting miniature excitatory post synaptic currents (mEPSCs. Our data suggest that the maturation of inhibitory inputs onto layer 5 pyramidal neurons is cell-type specific. These data may inform our understanding of adolescent brain development across species and aid in identifying candidate subcircuits that may show greater vulnerability in mental illness.

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

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    Elizabeth Maria Aparecida Barasnevicius Quagliato

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

  3. Prions, From Structure to Epigenetics and Neuronal Functions

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    Lindquist, Susan

    2012-02-01

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

  4. Orexin/hypocretin neuron activation is correlated with alcohol seeking and preference in a topographically specific manner.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moorman, David E; James, Morgan H; Kilroy, Elisabeth A; Aston-Jones, Gary

    2016-03-01

    Orexin (ORX) (also known as hypocretin) neurons are located exclusively in the posterior hypothalamus, and are involved in a wide range of behaviours, including motivation for drugs of abuse such as alcohol. Hypothalamic subregions contain functionally distinct populations of ORX neurons that may play different roles in regulating drug-motivated and alcohol-motivated behaviours. To investigate the role of ORX neurons in ethanol (EtOH) seeking, we measured Fos activation of ORX neurons in rats following three different measures of EtOH seeking and preference: (i) context-induced reinstatement, or ABA renewal; (ii) cue-induced reinstatement of extinguished responding for EtOH; and (iii) a home cage task in which preference for EtOH (vs. water) was measured in the absence of either reinforcer. We found significant activation of ORX neurons in multiple subregions across all three behavioural tests. Notably, ORX neuron activation in the lateral hypothalamus correlated with the degree of seeking in context reinstatement and the degree of preference in home cage preference testing. In addition, Fos activation in ORX neurons in the dorsomedial hypothalamic and perifornical areas was correlated with context and home cage seeking/preference, respectively. Surprisingly, we found no relationship between the degree of cue-induced reinstatement and ORX neuron activation in any region, despite robust activation overall during reinstatement. These results demonstrate a strong relationship between ORX neuron activation and EtOH seeking/preference, but one that is differentially expressed across ORX field subregions, depending on reinstatement modality. © 2016 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    1993-01-01

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

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

    KAUST Repository

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

    2011-01-01

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

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

    KAUST Repository

    Jeong, Suh Young

    2011-10-07

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suh Young Jeong

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-05-17

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

  10. SPECIFICS AND FUNCTIONS OF THE PROVOCATIVE ACT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ROŞCA ANGELINA

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The author points out that the provocativeness that is at the basis of the creations belonging to different art trends (constructivism, futurism, surrealism, minimalism, conceptualism and so on played a key role in the art of the 20th – 21st centuries. At present, provocation has become the main strategy for the development of the theatrical process, which makes it necessary for theatre science to try to delineate the theoretical outline of what we call provocativity. The author, using worldknown theatrical cases, determines the specificity and functions of provocativity. The latter consists in the fact that the provocation, allows a clearer outline of the boundaries of art, broadening the permissibility framework and increasing the degree of tolerance in society, breaks the taboos, from the sexual to the social ones, contributes to changing the artistic paradigm, destroys stereotypes, radically changes conceptions, artistic means, methods, models of organizing the artistic process, impacts the emergence of radical aesthetics, carries out artistic and social reforms.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Atossa Shaltouki

    2015-05-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Han-Jia Jiang

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian Schnell

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

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

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    olayemitoyin

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2008-09-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jason P. Weick

    2016-01-01

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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bindal, Ahmet; Hamedi-Hagh, Sotoudeh

    2007-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-10-06

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

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-28

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

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

  4. Age-Specific Mechanisms in an SSVEP-Based BCI Scenario: Evidences from Spontaneous Rhythms and Neuronal Oscillators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Ehlers

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Utilizing changes in steady-state visual evoked potentials (SSVEPs is an established approach to operate a brain-computer interface (BCI. The present study elucidates to what extent development-specific changes in the background EEG influence the ability to proper handle a stimulus-driven BCI. Therefore we investigated the effects of a wide range of photic driving on children between six and ten years in comparison to an adult control group. The results show differences in the driving profiles apparently in close communication with the specific type of intermittent stimulation. The factor age gains influence with decreasing stimulation frequency, whereby the superior performance of the adults seems to be determined to a great extent by elaborated driving responses at 10 and 11 Hz, matching the dominant resonance frequency of the respective background EEG. This functional interplay was only partially obtained in higher frequency ranges and absent in the induced driving between 30 and 40 Hz, indicating distinctions in the operating principles and developmental changes of the underlying neuronal oscillators.

  5. Interleukin-1 beta activates specific populations of enteric neurons and enteric glia in the guinea pig ileum and colon

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tjwa, ETTL; Bradley, JM; Keenan, CM; Kroese, ABA; Sharkey, KA

    2003-01-01

    Fos expression was used to assess whether the proinflammatory cytokine interleukin-1beta (IL-1beta) activated specific, chemically coded neuronal populations in isolated preparations of guinea pig ileum and colon. Whether the effects of IL-1beta were mediated through a prostaglandin pathway and

  6. Astrocyte-Specific Overexpression of Insulin-Like Growth Factor-1 Protects Hippocampal Neurons and Reduces Behavioral Deficits following Traumatic Brain Injury in Mice.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sindhu K Madathil

    Full Text Available Traumatic brain injury (TBI survivors often suffer from long-lasting cognitive impairment that stems from hippocampal injury. Systemic administration of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1, a polypeptide growth factor known to play vital roles in neuronal survival, has been shown to attenuate posttraumatic cognitive and motor dysfunction. However, its neuroprotective effects in TBI have not been examined. To this end, moderate or severe contusion brain injury was induced in mice with conditional (postnatal overexpression of IGF-1 using the controlled cortical impact (CCI injury model. CCI brain injury produces robust reactive astrocytosis in regions of neuronal damage such as the hippocampus. We exploited this regional astrocytosis by linking expression of hIGF-1 to the astrocyte-specific glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP promoter, effectively targeting IGF-1 delivery to vulnerable neurons. Following brain injury, IGF-1Tg mice exhibited a progressive increase in hippocampal IGF-1 levels which was coupled with enhanced hippocampal reactive astrocytosis and significantly greater GFAP levels relative to WT mice. IGF-1 overexpression stimulated Akt phosphorylation and reduced acute (1 and 3d hippocampal neurodegeneration, culminating in greater neuron survival at 10d after CCI injury. Hippocampal neuroprotection achieved by IGF-1 overexpression was accompanied by improved motor and cognitive function in brain-injured mice. These data provide strong support for the therapeutic efficacy of increased brain levels of IGF-1 in the setting of TBI.

  7. Astrocyte-Specific Overexpression of Insulin-Like Growth Factor-1 Protects Hippocampal Neurons and Reduces Behavioral Deficits following Traumatic Brain Injury in Mice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madathil, Sindhu K.; Carlson, Shaun W.; Brelsfoard, Jennifer M.; Ye, Ping; D’Ercole, A. Joseph; Saatman, Kathryn E.

    2013-01-01

    Traumatic brain injury (TBI) survivors often suffer from long-lasting cognitive impairment that stems from hippocampal injury. Systemic administration of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1), a polypeptide growth factor known to play vital roles in neuronal survival, has been shown to attenuate posttraumatic cognitive and motor dysfunction. However, its neuroprotective effects in TBI have not been examined. To this end, moderate or severe contusion brain injury was induced in mice with conditional (postnatal) overexpression of IGF-1 using the controlled cortical impact (CCI) injury model. CCI brain injury produces robust reactive astrocytosis in regions of neuronal damage such as the hippocampus. We exploited this regional astrocytosis by linking expression of hIGF-1 to the astrocyte-specific glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) promoter, effectively targeting IGF-1 delivery to vulnerable neurons. Following brain injury, IGF-1Tg mice exhibited a progressive increase in hippocampal IGF-1 levels which was coupled with enhanced hippocampal reactive astrocytosis and significantly greater GFAP levels relative to WT mice. IGF-1 overexpression stimulated Akt phosphorylation and reduced acute (1 and 3d) hippocampal neurodegeneration, culminating in greater neuron survival at 10d after CCI injury. Hippocampal neuroprotection achieved by IGF-1 overexpression was accompanied by improved motor and cognitive function in brain-injured mice. These data provide strong support for the therapeutic efficacy of increased brain levels of IGF-1 in the setting of TBI. PMID:23826235

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keefe, J. R.

    1985-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uehara, Takashi; Sumiyoshi, Tomiki; Kurachi, Masayoshi

    2015-01-01

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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Watanabe, Takehiko; Yanai, Kazuhiko

    2001-01-01

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

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2001-12-01

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

  12. The superior colliculus of the camel: a neuronal-specific nuclear protein (NeuN) and neuropeptide study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mensah-Brown, E P K; Garey, L J

    2006-01-01

    In this study we examined the superior colliculus of the midbrain of the one-humped (dromedary) camel, Camelus dromedarius, using Nissl staining and anti-neuronal-specific nuclear protein (NeuN) immunohistochemistry for total neuronal population as well as for the enkephalins, somatostatin (SOM) and substance P (SP). It was found that, unlike in most mammals, the superior colliculus is much larger than the inferior colliculus. The superior colliculus is concerned with visual reflexes and the co-ordination of head, neck and eye movements, which are certainly of importance to this animal with large eyes, head and neck, and apparently good vision. The basic neuronal architecture and lamination of the superior colliculus are similar to that in other mammals. However, we describe for the first time an unusually large content of neurons in the superior colliculus with strong immunoreactivity for met-enkephalin, an endogenous opioid. We classified the majority of these neurons as small (perimeters of 40–50 µm), and localized diffusely throughout the superficial grey and stratum opticum. In addition, large pyramidal-like neurons with perimeters of 100 µm and above were present in the intermediate grey layer. Large unipolar cells were located immediately dorsal to the deep grey layer. By contrast, small neurons (perimeters of 40–50 µm) immunopositive to SOM and SP were located exclusively in the superficial grey layer. We propose that this system may be associated with a pain-inhibiting pathway that has been described from the periaqueductal grey matter, juxtaposing the deep layers of the superior colliculus, to the lower brainstem and spinal cord. Such pain inhibition could be important in relation to the camel's life in the harsh environment of its native deserts, often living in very high temperatures with no shade and a diet consisting largely of thorny branches. PMID:16441568

  13. Tracking the fear memory engram: discrete populations of neurons within amygdala, hypothalamus, and lateral septum are specifically activated by auditory fear conditioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Yvette M.; Gunnersen, Jenny M.; Murphy, Mark

    2015-01-01

    Memory formation is thought to occur via enhanced synaptic connectivity between populations of neurons in the brain. However, it has been difficult to localize and identify the neurons that are directly involved in the formation of any specific memory. We have previously used fos-tau-lacZ (FTL) transgenic mice to identify discrete populations of neurons in amygdala and hypothalamus, which were specifically activated by fear conditioning to a context. Here we have examined neuronal activation due to fear conditioning to a more specific auditory cue. Discrete populations of learning-specific neurons were identified in only a small number of locations in the brain, including those previously found to be activated in amygdala and hypothalamus by context fear conditioning. These populations, each containing only a relatively small number of neurons, may be directly involved in fear learning and memory. PMID:26179231

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-09-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-10-01

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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1985-01-01

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

  18. Species-specific flight styles of flies are reflected in the response dynamics of a homologue motion sensitive neuron

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bart eGeurten

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Hoverflies and blowflies have distinctly different flight styles. Yet, both species have been shown to structure their flight behaviour in a way that facilitates extraction of 3D information from the image flow on the retina (optic flow. Neuronal candidates to analyse the optic flow are the tangential cells in the third optical ganglion – the lobula complex. These neurons are directionally selective and integrate the optic flow over large parts of the visual field. Homologue tangential cells in hoverflies and blowflies have a similar morphology. Because blowflies and hoverflies have similar neuronal layout but distinctly different flight behaviours, they are an ideal substrate to pinpoint potential neuronal adaptations to the different flight styles.In this article we describe the relationship between locomotion behaviour and motion vision on three different levels:1.We compare the different flight styles based on the categorisation of flight behaviour into prototypical movements.2.We measure the species specific dynamics of the optic flow under naturalistic flight conditions. We found the translational optic flow of both species to be very different.3.We describe possible adaptations of a homologue motion sensitive neuron. We stimulate this cell in blowflies (Calliphora and hoverflies (Eristalis with naturalistic optic flow generated by both species during free flight. The characterized hoverfly tangential cell responds faster to transient changes in the optic flow than its blowfly homologue. It is discussed whether and how the different dynamical response properties aid optic flow analysis.

  19. Reverse engineering a mouse embryonic stem cell-specific transcriptional network reveals a new modulator of neuronal differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Cegli, Rossella; Iacobacci, Simona; Flore, Gemma; Gambardella, Gennaro; Mao, Lei; Cutillo, Luisa; Lauria, Mario; Klose, Joachim; Illingworth, Elizabeth; Banfi, Sandro; di Bernardo, Diego

    2013-01-01

    Gene expression profiles can be used to infer previously unknown transcriptional regulatory interaction among thousands of genes, via systems biology 'reverse engineering' approaches. We 'reverse engineered' an embryonic stem (ES)-specific transcriptional network from 171 gene expression profiles, measured in ES cells, to identify master regulators of gene expression ('hubs'). We discovered that E130012A19Rik (E13), highly expressed in mouse ES cells as compared with differentiated cells, was a central 'hub' of the network. We demonstrated that E13 is a protein-coding gene implicated in regulating the commitment towards the different neuronal subtypes and glia cells. The overexpression and knock-down of E13 in ES cell lines, undergoing differentiation into neurons and glia cells, caused a strong up-regulation of the glutamatergic neurons marker Vglut2 and a strong down-regulation of the GABAergic neurons marker GAD65 and of the radial glia marker Blbp. We confirmed E13 expression in the cerebral cortex of adult mice and during development. By immuno-based affinity purification, we characterized protein partners of E13, involved in the Polycomb complex. Our results suggest a role of E13 in regulating the division between glutamatergic projection neurons and GABAergic interneurons and glia cells possibly by epigenetic-mediated transcriptional regulation.

  20. An ancient neurotrophin receptor code; a single Runx/Cbfβ complex determines somatosensory neuron fate specification in zebrafish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gau, Philia; Curtright, Andrew; Condon, Logan; Raible, David W; Dhaka, Ajay

    2017-07-01

    In terrestrial vertebrates such as birds and mammals, neurotrophin receptor expression is considered fundamental for the specification of distinct somatosensory neuron types where TrkA, TrkB and TrkC specify nociceptors, mechanoceptors and proprioceptors/mechanoceptors, respectively. In turn, Runx transcription factors promote neuronal fate specification by regulating neurotrophin receptor and sensory receptor expression where Runx1 mediates TrkA+ nociceptor diversification while Runx3 promotes a TrkC+ proprioceptive/mechanoceptive fate. Here, we report in zebrafish larvae that orthologs of the neurotrophin receptors in contrast to terrestrial vertebrates mark overlapping and distinct subsets of nociceptors suggesting that TrkA, TrkB and TrkC do not intrinsically promote nociceptor, mechanoceptor and proprioceptor/mechanoceptor neuronal fates, respectively. While we find that zebrafish Runx3 regulates nociceptors in contrast to terrestrial vertebrates, it shares a conserved regulatory mechanism found in terrestrial vertebrate proprioceptors/mechanoceptors in which it promotes TrkC expression and suppresses TrkB expression. We find that Cbfβ, which enhances Runx protein stability and affinity for DNA, serves as an obligate cofactor for Runx in neuronal fate determination. High levels of Runx can compensate for the loss of Cbfβ, indicating that in this context Cbfβ serves solely as a signal amplifier of Runx activity. Our data suggests an alteration/expansion of the neurotrophin receptor code of sensory neurons between larval teleost fish and terrestrial vertebrates, while the essential roles of Runx/Cbfβ in sensory neuron cell fate determination while also expanded are conserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-03-02

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-11-15

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

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2014-08-28

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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    2014-01-01

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

  5. Context-specific requirements of functional domains of the Spectraplakin Short stop in vivo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bottenberg, Wolfgang; Sanchez-Soriano, Natalia; Alves-Silva, Juliana; Hahn, Ines; Mende, Michael; Prokop, Andreas

    2009-07-01

    Spectraplakins are large multifunctional cytoskeletal interacting molecules implicated in various processes, including gastrulation, wound healing, skin blistering and neuronal degeneration. It has been speculated that the various functional domains and regions found in Spectraplakins are used in context-specific manners, a model which would provide a crucial explanation for the multifunctional nature of Spectraplakins. Here we tested this possibility by studying domain requirements of the Drosophila Spectraplakin Short stop (Shot) in three different cellular contexts in vivo: (1) neuronal growth, which requires dynamic actin-microtubule interaction; (2) formation and maintenance of tendon cells, which depends on highly stabilised arrays of actin filaments and microtubules, and (3) compartmentalisation in neurons, which is likely to involve cortical F-actin networks. Using these cellular contexts for rescue experiments with Shot deletion constructs in shot mutant background, a number of differential domain requirements were uncovered. First, binding of Shot to F-actin through the first Calponin domain is essential in neuronal contexts but dispensable in tendon cells. This finding is supported by our analyses of shot(kakP2) mutant embryos, which produce only endogenous isoforms lacking the first Calponin domain. Thus, our data demonstrate a functional relevance for these isoforms in vivo. Second, we provide the first functional role for the Plakin domain of Shot, which has a strong requirement for compartmentalisation in neurons and axonal growth, demonstrating that Plakin domains of long Spectraplakin isoforms are of functional relevance. Like the Calponin domain, also the Plakin domain is dispensable in tendon cells, and the currently assumed role of Shot as a linker of microtubules to the tendon cell surface may have to be reconsidered. Third, we demonstrate a function of Shot as an actin-microtubule linker in dendritic growth, thus shedding new light into

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    2011-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Petra Maria Hermann

    2014-12-01

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

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

    OpenAIRE

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

    2018-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kjell eFuxe

    2012-06-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mark T W Handley

    2010-05-01

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

  12. Neuron-specific enolase is a useful maker of neuroendocrine origin in pheochromocytoma cell culture

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Abelin, N.; Dahia, P.L.M.; Martin, R.; Kato, S.; Toledo, S.P.A.

    1994-01-01

    Neuron-specific enolase (NSE) has been used as a marker for neuroendocrine tumors either in immunocytochemical studies or in serum measurements. In this paper NSE levels were determined in cultured pheochromocytoma cells to test whether it is also a useful marker in cell culture of tumors derived from neuroendocrine system. Cultured pheochromocytoma cells came from a primary explant and were grown in RPMI supplemented with 20% fetal calf serum, 100 μg/mL ampicillin and 100 μ/mL streptomycin. NSE was measured in culture medium and cell homogenates. Samples from different pheochromocytoma cultures were analyzed and compared to normal cultured fibroblast cells derived from human skin. NSE was measured by a commercially available radioimmunoassay kit. NSE levels were higher in cell homogenates as compared to those in culture medium, reaching levels as high as 6-fold in the former in TE cell line (26.46 ng/mL and 4.39 ng/mL, respectively). Serial measurements in culture medium from TE cell line evidenced decreasing values in subsequential subcultures (from 9.24 ng/mL during primary explant to 1.7 ng/mL in the tenth subculture). In cultured normal fibroblasts, NSE levels in cultured media were definitely lower than those obtained from pheochromocytoma cultures. These preliminary data suggest that NSE may be a useful marker of neuroendocrine derived tumors, such as pheochromocytoma, in culture. Thus, the simplicity and availability of NSE radioimmunoassay provides an alternative to catecholamine measurement to better characterize pheochromocytoma cell lines in culture, with the advantage of faster result at lower costs. (author). 18 refs, 2 tabs

  13. The relationship between neuron-specific enolase and prognosis of patients with acute traumatic brain injury

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yun-yang LIU

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Objective To investigate the relationship between neuron-specific enolase (NSE levels in serum and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF of patients with acute traumatic brain injury (TBI and the prognosis of TBI patients.  Methods A total of 89 patients with acute TBI were divided into light, medium, heavy and severe TBI groups based on admission Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS score. Serum NSE expression levels were detected in all cases and NSE levels in CSF were detected in 18 cases within 12 h after TBI. The expression levels of serum NSE in 20 normal people, except cases of lung disease and nervous system damage, were detected as a control group. Results Compared with the control group, serum NSE expression levels of patients in each TBI group were elevated (P < 0.05, for all, and the NSE levels in severe and heavy TBI groups were higher than that in medium and light groups (P < 0.05, for all. The serum NSE expression levels of patients with cerebral contusion were higher than that of patients with diffuse axonal injury (DAI, P = 0.025, subdural hematoma (P = 0.031 and epidural hematoma (P = 0.021. Serum NSE expression levels were negatively correlated with GCS score (rs = - 0.327, P = 0.024 and Glasgow Outcome Scale (GOS score (rs = - 0.252, P = 0.049. The NSE expression levels of CSF in severe and heavy TBI patients were higher than that of serum (P = 0.039, 0.031.  Conclusions NSE expression changes can be evaluated as an auxiliary indicator in reflecting the degree of acute TBI, typing diagnosis and prognostic evaluation, and NSE levels of CSF is more sensitive than that of serum. DOI: 10.3969/j.issn.1672-6731.2015.03.013

  14. Generation of Regionally Specific Neural Progenitor Cells (NPCs) and Neurons from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells (hPSCs).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cutts, Josh; Brookhouser, Nicholas; Brafman, David A

    2016-01-01

    Neural progenitor cells (NPCs) derived from human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) are a multipotent cell population capable of long-term expansion and differentiation into a variety of neuronal subtypes. As such, NPCs have tremendous potential for disease modeling, drug screening, and regenerative medicine. Current methods for the generation of NPCs results in cell populations homogenous for pan-neural markers such as SOX1 and SOX2 but heterogeneous with respect to regional identity. In order to use NPCs and their neuronal derivatives to investigate mechanisms of neurological disorders and develop more physiologically relevant disease models, methods for generation of regionally specific NPCs and neurons are needed. Here, we describe a protocol in which exogenous manipulation of WNT signaling, through either activation or inhibition, during neural differentiation of hPSCs, promotes the formation of regionally homogenous NPCs and neuronal cultures. In addition, we provide methods to monitor and characterize the efficiency of hPSC differentiation to these regionally specific cell identities.

  15. A Highly Efficient Human Pluripotent Stem Cell Microglia Model Displays a Neuronal-Co-culture-Specific Expression Profile and Inflammatory Response

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Walther Haenseler

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Microglia are increasingly implicated in brain pathology, particularly neurodegenerative disease, with many genes implicated in Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and motor neuron disease expressed in microglia. There is, therefore, a need for authentic, efficient in vitro models to study human microglial pathological mechanisms. Microglia originate from the yolk sac as MYB-independent macrophages, migrating into the developing brain to complete differentiation. Here, we recapitulate microglial ontogeny by highly efficient differentiation of embryonic MYB-independent iPSC-derived macrophages then co-culture them with iPSC-derived cortical neurons. Co-cultures retain neuronal maturity and functionality for many weeks. Co-culture microglia express key microglia-specific markers and neurodegenerative disease-relevant genes, develop highly dynamic ramifications, and are phagocytic. Upon activation they become more ameboid, releasing multiple microglia-relevant cytokines. Importantly, co-culture microglia downregulate pathogen-response pathways, upregulate homeostatic function pathways, and promote a more anti-inflammatory and pro-remodeling cytokine response than corresponding monocultures, demonstrating that co-cultures are preferable for modeling authentic microglial physiology.

  16. The Alu neurodegeneration hypothesis: A primate-specific mechanism for neuronal transcription noise, mitochondrial dysfunction, and manifestation of neurodegenerative disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larsen, Peter A; Lutz, Michael W; Hunnicutt, Kelsie E; Mihovilovic, Mirta; Saunders, Ann M; Yoder, Anne D; Roses, Allen D

    2017-07-01

    It is hypothesized that retrotransposons have played a fundamental role in primate evolution and that enhanced neurologic retrotransposon activity in humans may underlie the origin of higher cognitive function. As a potential consequence of this enhanced activity, it is likely that neurons are susceptible to deleterious retrotransposon pathways that can disrupt mitochondrial function. An example is observed in the TOMM40 gene, encoding a β-barrel protein critical for mitochondrial preprotein transport. Primate-specific Alu retrotransposons have repeatedly inserted into TOMM40 introns, and at least one variant associated with late-onset Alzheimer's disease originated from an Alu insertion event. We provide evidence of enriched Alu content in mitochondrial genes and postulate that Alus can disrupt mitochondrial populations in neurons, thereby setting the stage for progressive neurologic dysfunction. This Alu neurodegeneration hypothesis is compatible with decades of research and offers a plausible mechanism for the disruption of neuronal mitochondrial homeostasis, ultimately cascading into neurodegenerative disease. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Automatic Construction of Java Programs from Functional Program Specifications

    OpenAIRE

    Md. Humayun Kabir

    2015-01-01

    This paper presents a novel approach to construct Java programs automatically from the input functional program specifications on natural numbers from the constructive proofs of the input specifications using an inductive theorem prover called Poiti'n. The construction of a Java program from the input functional program specification involves two phases. The theorem prover is used to construct a higher order functional (HOF) program from the input specification expressed as an existential the...

  18. Sustained expression of a neuron-specific isoform of the Taf1 gene in development stages and aging in mice

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jambaldorj, Jamiyansuren; Makino, Satoshi; Munkhbat, Batmunkh; Tamiya, Gen

    2012-01-01

    Highlights: ► We identified the mouse homologue of neuron-specific TAF1 (N-Taf1). ► Taf1 mRNA was expressed in most tissues and cell lines. ► N-Taf1 mRNA was expressed in the brain and Neuroblastoma N2a cell lines. ► Taf1 and N-Taf1 showed different expression profile in development stage and aging. -- Abstract: TATA-box binding protein associated factor 1 (TAF1) protein is the largest and the essential component of the TFIID complex in the pathway of RNA polymerase II–mediated gene transcription, and it regulates transcription of a large number of genes related to cell division. The neuron-specific isoform of the TAF1 gene (N-TAF1), which we reported previously, may have an essential role in neurons through transcriptional regulation of many neuron-specific genes. In the present study, we cloned the full-length cDNA that encodes the mouse homologue of N-TAF1 (N-Taf1) protein. By carrying out of real time RT-PCR, we investigated the expression analysis of the N-Taf1 mRNA in mouse tissues and cell lines. As well as the human N-TAF1, the N-Taf1 showed limited expression in the brain and neuroblastoma, whereas Taf1 expressed elsewhere. Furthermore, in mouse embryo head or mouse brain, mRNA expression of TAF1 changes dramatically during development but N-Taf1 showed sustained expression. Our result suggests that the N-Taf1 gene has an important role in non-dividing neuronal cell rather than in cell division and proliferation during neurogenesis.

  19. Sustained expression of a neuron-specific isoform of the Taf1 gene in development stages and aging in mice

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jambaldorj, Jamiyansuren [Department of Pharmacology, Institute of Health Biosciences, Graduate School, The University of Tokushima, Tokushima 770-8503 (Japan); Advanced Molecular Epidemiology Research Institute, Yamagata University Faculty of Medicine, Yamagata 990-9585 (Japan); Central Scientific Research Laboratory, Institute of Medical Sciences, Ulaanbaatar (Mongolia); Makino, Satoshi, E-mail: smakino@genetix-h.com [Molecular Neuroscience Research Center, Shiga University of Medical Science, Otsu 520-2192 (Japan); Munkhbat, Batmunkh [Central Scientific Research Laboratory, Institute of Medical Sciences, Ulaanbaatar (Mongolia); Tamiya, Gen [Advanced Molecular Epidemiology Research Institute, Yamagata University Faculty of Medicine, Yamagata 990-9585 (Japan)

    2012-08-24

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer We identified the mouse homologue of neuron-specific TAF1 (N-Taf1). Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Taf1 mRNA was expressed in most tissues and cell lines. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer N-Taf1 mRNA was expressed in the brain and Neuroblastoma N2a cell lines. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Taf1 and N-Taf1 showed different expression profile in development stage and aging. -- Abstract: TATA-box binding protein associated factor 1 (TAF1) protein is the largest and the essential component of the TFIID complex in the pathway of RNA polymerase II-mediated gene transcription, and it regulates transcription of a large number of genes related to cell division. The neuron-specific isoform of the TAF1 gene (N-TAF1), which we reported previously, may have an essential role in neurons through transcriptional regulation of many neuron-specific genes. In the present study, we cloned the full-length cDNA that encodes the mouse homologue of N-TAF1 (N-Taf1) protein. By carrying out of real time RT-PCR, we investigated the expression analysis of the N-Taf1 mRNA in mouse tissues and cell lines. As well as the human N-TAF1, the N-Taf1 showed limited expression in the brain and neuroblastoma, whereas Taf1 expressed elsewhere. Furthermore, in mouse embryo head or mouse brain, mRNA expression of TAF1 changes dramatically during development but N-Taf1 showed sustained expression. Our result suggests that the N-Taf1 gene has an important role in non-dividing neuronal cell rather than in cell division and proliferation during neurogenesis.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-07-25

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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    2000-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2009-12-22

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-08-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dai Mitsushima

    2015-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Llinás, Rodolfo R.

    2014-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodolfo R Llinas

    2014-11-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roland Kern

    2005-06-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-08-01

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

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2003-01-01

    irradiation blocked the formation of new neurons in the dentate gyrus of the hippocampus. At different time points after the termination of the irradiation procedure, the animals were tested in two tests of short-term memory that differ with respect to their dependence on hippocampal function. Eight and 21...... that blocked neurogenesis contributes to the reported deleterious side effects of this treatment, consisting of memory impairment, dysphoria and lethargy....

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

    OpenAIRE

    Llinás, Rodolfo R.

    2014-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-03-15

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

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

    OpenAIRE

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juliana Alves Brandão

    2015-04-01

    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.

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rotteveel-de Groot, D.M. de

    2007-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-08-20

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

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

    OpenAIRE

    Guliyev , Namig; Ismailov , Vugar

    2016-01-01

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

  18. Microenvironment Dependent Photobiomodulation on Function-Specific Signal Transduction Pathways

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Timon Cheng-Yi Liu

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Cellular photobiomodulation on a cellular function has been shown to be homeostatic. Its function-specific pathway mechanism would be further discussed in this paper. The signal transduction pathways maintaining a normal function in its function-specific homeostasis (FSH, resisting the activation of many other irrelative signal transduction pathways, are so sparse that it can be supposed that there may be normal function-specific signal transduction pathways (NSPs. A low level laser irradiation or monochromatic light may promote the activation of partially activated NSP and/or its redundant NSP so that it may induce the second-order phase transition of a function from its dysfunctional one far from its FSH to its normal one in a function-specific microenvironment and may also induce the first-order functional phase transition of the normal function from low level to high level.

  19. Immunohistochemical localization of gastrin-releasing peptide, neuronal nitric oxide synthase and neurone-specific enolase in the uterus of the North American opossum, Didelphis virginiana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumano, A; Sasaki, M; Budipitojo, T; Kitamura, N; Krause, W J; Yamada, J

    2005-08-01

    The present study has demonstrated the immunohistochemical localization of gastrin-releasing peptide (GRP), neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) and neurone-specific enolase (NSE) in the uterus of the North American opossum. Although the presence of GRP, nNOS and NSE has been reported recently in the uterus of eutherian species this is the first description of these peptides in a metatherian species. Metatherian mammals are of interest because in these species it is the prolonged lactation phase of development that is the period of primary reproductive investment rather than intrauterine development as is true of eutherian mammals. The opossum, like other marsupial species, has a very abbreviated gestation period which in Didelphis lasts only 12.5 days. GRP was localized in the cytoplasm of cells forming the surface lining epithelium and the glandular epithelium of the opossum endometrium late in pregnancy, at 11.5 days of gestation. Likewise, immunoreactivities of nNOS and NSE were found primarily within the epithelial cells of the endometrium at 11.5 days of gestation. As these peptides and enzymes appear primarily at the time of establishment of the yolk sac placenta (between day 10 and day 12.5 gestation), the present results strongly suggest that these factors may play a fundamental role in the placentation of the opossum.

  20. Brain-specific transcriptional regulator T-brain-1 controls brain wiring and neuronal activity in autism spectrum disorders

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    Tzyy-Nan eHuang

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available T-brain-1 (TBR1 is a brain-specific T-box transcription factor. In 1995, Tbr1 was first identified from a subtractive hybridization that compared mouse embryonic and adult telencephalons. Previous studies of Tbr1–/– mice have indicated critical roles for TBR1 in the development of the cerebral cortex, amygdala and olfactory bulb. Neuronal migration and axonal projection are two important developmental features controlled by TBR1. Recently, recurrent de novo disruptive mutations in the TBR1 gene have been found in patients with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs. Human genetic studies have identified TBR1 as a high-confidence risk factor for ASDs. Because only one allele of the TBR1 gene is mutated in these patients, Tbr1+/– mice serve as a good genetic mouse model to explore the mechanism by which de novo TBR1 mutation leads to ASDs. Although neuronal migration and axonal projection defects of cerebral cortex are the most prominent phenotypes in Tbr1–/– mice, these features are not found in Tbr1+/– mice. Instead, inter- and intra-amygdalar axonal projections and NMDAR expression and activity in amygdala are particularly susceptible to Tbr1 haploinsufficiency. The studies indicated that both abnormal brain wiring (abnormal amygdalar connections and excitation/inhibition imbalance (NMDAR hypoactivity, two prominent models for ASD etiology, are present in Tbr1+/– mice. Moreover, calcium/calmodulin-dependent serine protein kinase (CASK was found to interact with TBR1. The CASK-TBR1 complex had been shown to directly bind the promoter of the Grin2b gene, which is also known as Nmdar2b, and upregulate Grin2b expression. This molecular function of TBR1 provides an explanation for NMDAR hypoactivity in Tbr1+/– mice. In addition to Grin2b, cell adhesion molecules-including Ntng1, Cdh8 and Cntn2-are also regulated by TBR1 to control axonal projections of amygdala. Taken together, the studies of Tbr1 provide an integrated picture of ASD

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

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    Mandy Cook

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-04-01

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

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

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    Jan Tønnesen

    Full Text Available Intrastriatal grafts of stem cell-derived dopamine (DA neurons induce behavioral recovery in animal models of Parkinson's disease (PD, but how they functionally integrate in host neural circuitries is poorly understood. Here, Wnt5a-overexpressing neural stem cells derived from embryonic ventral mesencephalon of tyrosine hydroxylase-GFP transgenic mice were expanded as neurospheres and transplanted into organotypic cultures of wild type mouse striatum. Differentiated GFP-labeled DA neurons in the grafts exhibited mature neuronal properties, including spontaneous firing of action potentials, presence of post-synaptic currents, and functional expression of DA D₂ autoreceptors. These properties resembled those recorded from identical cells in acute slices of intrastriatal grafts in the 6-hydroxy-DA-induced mouse PD model and from DA neurons in intact substantia nigra. Optogenetic activation or inhibition of grafted cells and host neurons using channelrhodopsin-2 (ChR2 and halorhodopsin (NpHR, respectively, revealed complex, bi-directional synaptic interactions between grafted cells and host neurons and extensive synaptic connectivity within the graft. Our data demonstrate for the first time using optogenetics that ectopically grafted stem cell-derived DA neurons become functionally integrated in the DA-denervated striatum. Further optogenetic dissection of the synaptic wiring between grafted and host neurons will be crucial to clarify the cellular and synaptic mechanisms underlying behavioral recovery as well as adverse effects following stem cell-based DA cell replacement strategies in PD.

  4. CELF family RNA-binding protein UNC-75 regulates two sets of mutually exclusive exons of the unc-32 gene in neuron-specific manners in Caenorhabditis elegans.

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    Hidehito Kuroyanagi

    Full Text Available An enormous number of alternative pre-mRNA splicing patterns in multicellular organisms are coordinately defined by a limited number of regulatory proteins and cis elements. Mutually exclusive alternative splicing should be strictly regulated and is a challenging model for elucidating regulation mechanisms. Here we provide models of the regulation of two sets of mutually exclusive exons, 4a-4c and 7a-7b, of the Caenorhabditis elegans uncoordinated (unc-32 gene, encoding the a subunit of V0 complex of vacuolar-type H(+-ATPases. We visualize selection patterns of exon 4 and exon 7 in vivo by utilizing a trio and a pair of symmetric fluorescence splicing reporter minigenes, respectively, to demonstrate that they are regulated in tissue-specific manners. Genetic analyses reveal that RBFOX family RNA-binding proteins ASD-1 and FOX-1 and a UGCAUG stretch in intron 7b are involved in the neuron-specific selection of exon 7a. Through further forward genetic screening, we identify UNC-75, a neuron-specific CELF family RNA-binding protein of unknown function, as an essential regulator for the exon 7a selection. Electrophoretic mobility shift assays specify a short fragment in intron 7a as the recognition site for UNC-75 and demonstrate that UNC-75 specifically binds via its three RNA recognition motifs to the element including a UUGUUGUGUUGU stretch. The UUGUUGUGUUGU stretch in the reporter minigenes is actually required for the selection of exon 7a in the nervous system. We compare the amounts of partially spliced RNAs in the wild-type and unc-75 mutant backgrounds and raise a model for the mutually exclusive selection of unc-32 exon 7 by the RBFOX family and UNC-75. The neuron-specific selection of unc-32 exon 4b is also regulated by UNC-75 and the unc-75 mutation suppresses the Unc phenotype of the exon-4b-specific allele of unc-32 mutants. Taken together, UNC-75 is the neuron-specific splicing factor and regulates both sets of the mutually exclusive

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-04-01

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

  6. An ultra-low-voltage electronic implementation of inertial neuron model with nonmonotonous Liao's activation function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kant, Nasir Ali; Dar, Mohamad Rafiq; Khanday, Farooq Ahmad

    2015-01-01

    The output of every neuron in neural network is specified by the employed activation function (AF) and therefore forms the heart of neural networks. As far as the design of artificial neural networks (ANNs) is concerned, hardware approach is preferred over software one because it promises the full utilization of the application potential of ANNs. Therefore, besides some arithmetic blocks, designing AF in hardware is the most important for designing ANN. While attempting to design the AF in hardware, the designs should be compatible with the modern Very Large Scale Integration (VLSI) design techniques. In this regard, the implemented designs should: only be in Metal Oxide Semiconductor (MOS) technology in order to be compatible with the digital designs, provide electronic tunability feature, and be able to operate at ultra-low voltage. Companding is one of the promising circuit design techniques for achieving these goals. In this paper, 0.5 V design of Liao's AF using sinh-domain technique is introduced. Furthermore, the function is tested by implementing inertial neuron model. The performance of the AF and inertial neuron model have been evaluated through simulation results, using the PSPICE software with the MOS transistor models provided by the 0.18-μm Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturer Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor (TSM CMOS) process.

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

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    Ritva Tikkanen

    2013-04-01

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

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

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    Daniela eCamillo

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Calretinin is a calcium-binding protein often used as a marker for a subset of inhibitory interneurons in the mammalian neocortex. We studied the labeled cells in offspring from a cross of a Cre-dependent reporter line with the CR-ires-Cre mice, which express Cre-recombinase in the same pattern as calretinin. We found that in the mature visual cortex, only a minority of the cells that have expressed calretinin and Cre-recombinase during their lifetime is GABAergic and only about 20% are immunoreactive for calretinin. The reason behind this is that calretinin is transiently expressed in many cortical pyramidal neurons during development. To determine whether neurons that express or have expressed calretinin share any distinct functional characteristics, we recorded their visual response properties using GCaMP6s calcium imaging. The average orientation selectivity, size tuning, and temporal and spatial frequency tuning of this group of cells, however, match the response profile of the general neuronal population, revealing the lack of functional specialization for the features studied.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1998-03-01

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

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2017-01-01

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

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

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    Sharma Rakesh

    2004-05-01

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

  13. Research of the serum level of neuron-specific enolase in children with various types of seizure

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    WANG Chun

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Objective To explore the relevance between the level changes of serum neuron-specific enolase (NSE and neuronal damage in various seizure types of children with epilepsy. Methods According to the classification criteria of seizure types formulated by International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE in 1981, 190 children with epilepsy were enrolled including tonic-clonic seizure group (41 cases, tonic seizure group (34 cases, clonic seizure group (22 cases, myoclonic seizure group (12 cases, atonic seizure group (17 cases, absence seizure group (22 cases, simple partial seizure group (21 cases and complex partial seizure group (21 cases, and 64 healthy children were enrolled as control group. The long-range vedio-electroencephalogram (VEEG was operated and the blood samples were collected from these cases within 72 h after their seizures. Results The serum NSE levels of epileptic children were significantly higher than control group (P = 0.000. Among these seizure groups, serum NSE in myoclonic seizure group [(32.42 ± 6.62 ng/ml] was significantly higher than the other types, except for tonic-clonic seizure group (P = 0.062. There was no significant difference among the other types (P > 0.05, for all. According to rank correlation analysis, there was positive corrlation between serum NSE levels and VEEG abnormal intensity (rs = 0.613, P = 0.000. Conclusion The serum NSE were markedly increased in children with epilepsy after seizures, suggesting that a certain degree of neuronal damage may result from seizures; the higher NSE levels were, the more serious neuronal damage caused by epileptiform discharges was. The serum NSE levels in myoclonic seizure group and tonic-clonic seizure group were significantly higher than other seizure types, indicating the two kinds of seizures may result in greater neuronal damage.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

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    Igor eMedina

    2014-02-01

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

  16. Dynamic changes in dopamine neuron function after DNSP-11 treatment: effects in vivo and increased ERK 1/2 phosphorylation in vitro.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fuqua, Joshua L; Littrell, Ofelia M; Lundblad, Martin; Turchan-Cholewo, Jadwiga; Abdelmoti, Lina G; Galperin, Emilia; Bradley, Luke H; Cass, Wayne A; Gash, Don M; Gerhardt, Greg A

    2014-04-01

    Glial cell-line derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) has demonstrated robust effects on dopamine (DA) neuron function and survival. A post-translational processing model of the human GDNF proprotein theorizes the formation of smaller, amidated peptide(s) from the proregion that exhibit neurobiological function, including an 11-amino-acid peptide named dopamine neuron stimulating peptide-11 (DNSP-11). A single treatment of DNSP-11 was delivered to the substantia nigra in the rat to investigate effects on DA-neuron function. Four weeks after treatment, potassium (K+) and D-amphetamine evoked DA release were studied in the striatum using microdialysis. There were no significant changes in DA-release after DNSP-11 treatment determined by microdialysis. Dopamine release was further examined in discrete regions of the striatum using high-speed chronoamperometry at 1-, 2-, and 4-weeks after DNSP-11 treatment. Two weeks after DNSP-11 treatment, potassium-evoked DA release was increased in specific subregions of the striatum. However, spontaneous locomotor activity was unchanged by DNSP-11 treatment. In addition, we show that a single treatment of DNSP-11 in the MN9D dopaminergic neuronal cell line results in phosphorylation of ERK1/2, which suggests a novel cellular mechanism responsible for increases in DA function. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Structural and functional plasticity specific to musical training with wind instruments

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    Uk-Su eChoi

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Numerous neuroimaging studies have shown structural and functional changes resulting from musical training. Among these studies, changes in primary sensory areas are mostly related to motor functions. In this study, we looked for some similar functional and structural changes in other functional modalities, such as somatosensory function, by examining the effects of musical training with wind instruments. We found significant changes in two aspects of neuroplasticity, cortical thickness and resting-state neuronal networks. A group of subjects with several years of continuous musical training and who are currently playing in university wind ensembles showed differences in cortical thickness in lip- and tongue-related brain areas versus non-music playing subjects. Cortical thickness in lip-related brain areas was significantly thicker and that in tongue-related areas was significantly thinner in the music playing group compared with that in the non-music playing group. Association analysis of lip-related areas in the music playing group showed that the increase in cortical thickness was caused by musical training. In addition, seed-based correlation analysis showed differential activation in the precentral gyrus and supplementary motor areas between the music and non-music playing groups. These results suggest that high-intensity training with specific musical instruments could induce structural changes in related anatomical areas and could also generate a new functional neuronal network in the brain.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-03-21

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-07-01

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

  20. Muscarinic M4 Receptors on Cholinergic and Dopamine D1 Receptor-Expressing Neurons Have Opposing Functionality for Positive Reinforcement and Influence Impulsivity

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    Anna M. Klawonn

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The neurotransmitter acetylcholine has been implicated in reward learning and drug addiction. However, the roles of the various cholinergic receptor subtypes on different neuron populations remain elusive. Here we study the function of muscarinic M4 receptors (M4Rs in dopamine D1 receptor (D1R expressing neurons and cholinergic neurons (expressing choline acetyltransferase; ChAT, during various reward-enforced behaviors and in a “waiting”-impulsivity test. We applied cell-type-specific gene deletions targeting M4Rs in D1RCre or ChATCre mice. Mice lacking M4Rs in D1R-neurons displayed greater cocaine seeking and drug-primed reinstatement than their littermate controls in a Pavlovian conditioned place preference (CPP paradigm. Furthermore, the M4R-D1RCre mice initiated significantly more premature responses (PRs in the 5-choice-serial-reaction-time-task (5CSRTT than their littermate controls, indicating impaired waiting impulse control. In contrast, mice lacking M4Rs in cholinergic neurons did not acquire cocaine Pavlovian conditioning. The M4R-ChATCre mice were also unable to learn positive reinforcement to either natural reward or cocaine in an operant runway paradigm. Immediate early gene (IEG expression (cFos and FosB induced by repeated cocaine injections was significantly increased in the forebrain of M4R-D1RCre mice, whereas it remained normal in the M4R-ChATCre mice. Our study illustrates that muscarinic M4Rs on specific neural populations, either cholinergic or D1R-expressing, are pivotal for learning processes related to both natural reward and drugs of abuse, with opposing functionality. Furthermore, we found that neurons expressing both M4Rs and D1Rs are important for signaling impulse control.

  1. Muscarinic M4 Receptors on Cholinergic and Dopamine D1 Receptor-Expressing Neurons Have Opposing Functionality for Positive Reinforcement and Influence Impulsivity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klawonn, Anna M; Wilhelms, Daniel B; Lindström, Sarah H; Singh, Anand Kumar; Jaarola, Maarit; Wess, Jürgen; Fritz, Michael; Engblom, David

    2018-01-01

    The neurotransmitter acetylcholine has been implicated in reward learning and drug addiction. However, the roles of the various cholinergic receptor subtypes on different neuron populations remain elusive. Here we study the function of muscarinic M4 receptors (M4Rs) in dopamine D1 receptor (D1R) expressing neurons and cholinergic neurons (expressing choline acetyltransferase; ChAT), during various reward-enforced behaviors and in a "waiting"-impulsivity test. We applied cell-type-specific gene deletions targeting M4Rs in D1RCre or ChATCre mice. Mice lacking M4Rs in D1R-neurons displayed greater cocaine seeking and drug-primed reinstatement than their littermate controls in a Pavlovian conditioned place preference (CPP) paradigm. Furthermore, the M4R-D1RCre mice initiated significantly more premature responses (PRs) in the 5-choice-serial-reaction-time-task (5CSRTT) than their littermate controls, indicating impaired waiting impulse control. In contrast, mice lacking M4Rs in cholinergic neurons did not acquire cocaine Pavlovian conditioning. The M4R-ChATCre mice were also unable to learn positive reinforcement to either natural reward or cocaine in an operant runway paradigm. Immediate early gene (IEG) expression ( cFos and FosB ) induced by repeated cocaine injections was significantly increased in the forebrain of M4R-D1RCre mice, whereas it remained normal in the M4R-ChATCre mice. Our study illustrates that muscarinic M4Rs on specific neural populations, either cholinergic or D1R-expressing, are pivotal for learning processes related to both natural reward and drugs of abuse, with opposing functionality. Furthermore, we found that neurons expressing both M4Rs and D1Rs are important for signaling impulse control.

  2. Tracking the Fear Memory Engram: Discrete Populations of Neurons within Amygdala, Hypothalamus, and Lateral Septum Are Specifically Activated by Auditory Fear Conditioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butler, Christopher W.; Wilson, Yvette M.; Gunnersen, Jenny M.; Murphy, Mark

    2015-01-01

    Memory formation is thought to occur via enhanced synaptic connectivity between populations of neurons in the brain. However, it has been difficult to localize and identify the neurons that are directly involved in the formation of any specific memory. We have previously used "fos-tau-lacZ" ("FTL") transgenic mice to identify…

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

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    Hitoshi Suzuki

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

  4. Structural and temporal requirements of Wnt/PCP protein Vangl2 function for convergence and extension movements and facial branchiomotor neuron migration in zebrafish.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Xiufang; Sittaramane, Vinoth; Gurung, Suman; Chandrasekhar, Anand

    2014-02-01

    Van gogh-like 2 (Vangl2), a core component of the Wnt/planar cell polarity (PCP) signaling pathway, is a four-pass transmembrane protein with N-terminal and C-terminal domains located in the cytosol, and is structurally conserved from flies to mammals. In vertebrates, Vangl2 plays an essential role in convergence and extension (CE) movements during gastrulation and in facial branchiomotor (FBM) neuron migration in the hindbrain. However, the roles of specific Vangl2 domains, of membrane association, and of specific extracellular and intracellular motifs have not been examined, especially in the context of FBM neuron migration. Through heat shock-inducible expression of various Vangl2 transgenes, we found that membrane associated functions of the N-terminal and C-terminal domains of Vangl2 are involved in regulating FBM neuron migration. Importantly, through temperature shift experiments, we found that the critical period for Vangl2 function coincides with the initial stages of FBM neuron migration out of rhombomere 4. Intriguingly, we have also uncovered a putative nuclear localization motif in the C-terminal domain that may play a role in regulating CE movements. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Parvalbumin+ Neurons and Npas1+ Neurons Are Distinct Neuron Classes in the Mouse External Globus Pallidus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández, Vivian M; Hegeman, Daniel J; Cui, Qiaoling; Kelver, Daniel A; Fiske, Michael P; Glajch, Kelly E; Pitt, Jason E; Huang, Tina Y; Justice, Nicholas J; Chan, C Savio

    2015-08-26

    Compelling evidence suggests that pathological activity of the external globus pallidus (GPe), a nucleus in the basal ganglia, contributes to the motor symptoms of a variety of movement disorders such as Parkinson's disease. Recent studies have challenged the idea that the GPe comprises a single, homogenous population of neurons that serves as a simple relay in the indirect pathway. However, we still lack a full understanding of the diversity of the neurons that make up the GPe. Specifically, a more precise classification scheme is needed to better describe the fundamental biology and function of different GPe neuron classes. To this end, we generated a novel multicistronic BAC (bacterial artificial chromosome) transgenic mouse line under the regulatory elements of the Npas1 gene. Using a combinatorial transgenic and immunohistochemical approach, we discovered that parvalbumin-expressing neurons and Npas1-expressing neurons in the GPe represent two nonoverlapping cell classes, amounting to 55% and 27% of the total GPe neuron population, respectively. These two genetically identified cell classes projected primarily to the subthalamic nucleus and to the striatum, respectively. Additionally, parvalbumin-expressing neurons and Npas1-expressing neurons were distinct in their autonomous and driven firing characteristics, their expression of intrinsic ion conductances, and their responsiveness to chronic 6-hydroxydopamine lesion. In summary, our data argue that parvalbumin-expressing neurons and Npas1-expressing neurons are two distinct functional classes of GPe neurons. This work revises our understanding of the GPe, and provides the foundation for future studies of its function and dysfunction. Until recently, the heterogeneity of the constituent neurons within the external globus pallidus (GPe) was not fully appreciated. We addressed this knowledge gap by discovering two principal GPe neuron classes, which were identified by their nonoverlapping expression of the

  6. Parvalbumin+ Neurons and Npas1+ Neurons Are Distinct Neuron Classes in the Mouse External Globus Pallidus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández, Vivian M.; Hegeman, Daniel J.; Cui, Qiaoling; Kelver, Daniel A.; Fiske, Michael P.; Glajch, Kelly E.; Pitt, Jason E.; Huang, Tina Y.; Justice, Nicholas J.

    2015-01-01

    Compelling evidence suggests that pathological activity of the external globus pallidus (GPe), a nucleus in the basal ganglia, contributes to the motor symptoms of a variety of movement disorders such as Parkinson's disease. Recent studies have challenged the idea that the GPe comprises a single, homogenous population of neurons that serves as a simple relay in the indirect pathway. However, we still lack a full understanding of the diversity of the neurons that make up the GPe. Specifically, a more precise classification scheme is needed to better describe the fundamental biology and function of different GPe neuron classes. To this end, we generated a novel multicistronic BAC (bacterial artificial chromosome) transgenic mouse line under the regulatory elements of the Npas1 gene. Using a combinatorial transgenic and immunohistochemical approach, we discovered that parvalbumin-expressing neurons and Npas1-expressing neurons in the GPe represent two nonoverlapping cell classes, amounting to 55% and 27% of the total GPe neuron population, respectively. These two genetically identified cell classes projected primarily to the subthalamic nucleus and to the striatum, respectively. Additionally, parvalbumin-expressing neurons and Npas1-expressing neurons were distinct in their autonomous and driven firing characteristics, their expression of intrinsic ion conductances, and their responsiveness to chronic 6-hydroxydopamine lesion. In summary, our data argue that parvalbumin-expressing neurons and Npas1-expressing neurons are two distinct functional classes of GPe neurons. This work revises our understanding of the GPe, and provides the foundation for future studies of its function and dysfunction. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Until recently, the heterogeneity of the constituent neurons within the external globus pallidus (GPe) was not fully appreciated. We addressed this knowledge gap by discovering two principal GPe neuron classes, which were identified by their nonoverlapping

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

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    Meritxell Pons-Espinal

    2017-04-01

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

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1996-01-01

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

  9. Revisiting interaction specificity reveals neuronal and adipocyte Munc18 membrane fusion regulatory proteins differ in their binding interactions with partner SNARE Syntaxins.

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    Michelle P Christie

    Full Text Available The efficient delivery of cellular cargo relies on the fusion of cargo-carrying vesicles with the correct membrane at the correct time. These spatiotemporal fusion events occur when SNARE proteins on the vesicle interact with cognate SNARE proteins on the target membrane. Regulatory Munc18 proteins are thought to contribute to SNARE interaction specificity through interaction with the SNARE protein Syntaxin. Neuronal Munc18a interacts with Syntaxin1 but not Syntaxin4, and adipocyte Munc18c interacts with Syntaxin4 but not Syntaxin1. Here we show that this accepted view of specificity needs revision. We find that Munc18c interacts with both Syntaxin4 and Syntaxin1, and appears to bind "non-cognate" Syntaxin1 a little more tightly than Syntaxin4. Munc18a binds Syntaxin1 and Syntaxin4, though it interacts with its cognate Syntaxin1 much more tightly. We also observed that when bound to non-cognate Munc18c, Syntaxin1 captures its neuronal SNARE partners SNAP25 and VAMP2, and Munc18c can bind to pre-formed neuronal SNARE ternary complex. These findings reveal that Munc18a and Munc18c bind Syntaxins differently. Munc18c relies principally on the Syntaxin N-peptide interaction for binding Syntaxin4 or Syntaxin1, whereas Munc18a can bind Syntaxin1 tightly whether or not the Syntaxin1 N-peptide is present. We conclude that Munc18a and Munc18c differ in their binding interactions with Syntaxins: Munc18a has two tight binding modes/sites for Syntaxins as defined previously but Munc18c has just one that requires the N-peptide. These results indicate that the interactions between Munc18 and Syntaxin proteins, and the consequences for in vivo function, are more complex than can be accounted for by binding specificity alone.

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

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    Rebecca S Lam

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

  11. Synergy of Technical Specification, functional specifications and scenarios in requirements specifications

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Miedema, J.; van der Voort, Mascha C.; Lutters, Diederick; van Houten, Frederikus J.A.M.; Krause, Frank-Lothar

    2007-01-01

    In the (mechanical) design process, the requirements specification is a formal registration of the conditions that are imposed on a new or altered product design, both preceding as well as during the corresponding product development cycle. For a long time, the use of technical specifications has

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2011-01-01

    Intrastriatal grafts of stem cell-derived dopamine (DA) neurons induce behavioral recovery in animal models of Parkinson's disease (PD), but how they functionally integrate in host neural circuitries is poorly understood. Here, Wnt5a-overexpressing neural stem cells derived from embryonic ventral...... of post-synaptic currents, and functional expression of DA D₂ autoreceptors. These properties resembled those recorded from identical cells in acute slices of intrastriatal grafts in the 6-hydroxy-DA-induced mouse PD model and from DA neurons in intact substantia nigra. Optogenetic activation...... using optogenetics that ectopically grafted stem cell-derived DA neurons become functionally integrated in the DA-denervated striatum. Further optogenetic dissection of the synaptic wiring between grafted and host neurons will be crucial to clarify the cellular and synaptic mechanisms underlying...

  13. High-voltage-activated calcium current subtypes in mouse DRG neurons adapt in a subpopulation-specific manner after nerve injury.

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    Murali, Swetha S; Napier, Ian A; Mohammadi, Sarasa A; Alewood, Paul F; Lewis, Richard J; Christie, MacDonald J

    2015-03-01

    Changes in ion channel function and expression are characteristic of neuropathic pain. Voltage-gated calcium channels (VGCCs) are integral for neurotransmission and membrane excitability, but relatively little is known about changes in their expression after nerve injury. In this study, we investigate whether peripheral nerve ligation is followed by changes in the density and proportion of high-voltage-activated (HVA) VGCC current subtypes in dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons, the contribution of presynaptic N-type calcium channels in evoked excitatory postsynaptic currents (EPSCs) recorded from dorsal horn neurons in the spinal cord, and the changes in expression of mRNA encoding VGCC subunits in DRG neurons. Using C57BL/6 mice [8- to 11-wk-old males (n = 91)] for partial sciatic nerve ligation or sham surgery, we performed whole cell patch-clamp recordings on isolated DRG neurons and dorsal horn neurons and measured the expression of all VGCC subunits with RT-PCR in DRG neurons. After nerve injury, the density of P/Q-type current was reduced overall in DRG neurons. There was an increase in the percentage of N-type and a decrease in that of P/Q-type current in medium- to large-diameter neurons. No changes were found in the contribution of presynaptic N-type calcium channels in evoked EPSCs recorded from dorsal horn neurons. The α2δ-1 subunit was upregulated by 1.7-fold and γ-3, γ-2, and β-4 subunits were all downregulated 1.7-fold in injured neurons compared with sham-operated neurons. This comprehensive characterization of HVA VGCC subtypes in mouse DRG neurons after nerve injury revealed changes in N- and P/Q-type current proportions only in medium- to large-diameter neurons. Copyright © 2015 the American Physiological Society.

  14. The Hyperpolarization-Activated Current Determines Synaptic Excitability, Calcium Activity and Specific Viability of Substantia Nigra Dopaminergic Neurons

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    Carmen Carbone

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Differential vulnerability between Substantia Nigra pars compacta (SNpc and Ventral Tegmental Area (VTA dopaminergic (DAergic neurons is a hallmark of Parkinson’s disease (PD. Understanding the molecular bases of this key histopathological aspect would foster the development of much-needed disease-modifying therapies. Non-heterogeneous DAergic degeneration is present in both toxin-based and genetic animal models, suggesting that cellular specificity, rather than causing factors, constitutes the background for differential vulnerability. In this regard, we previously demonstrated that MPP+, a neurotoxin able to cause selective nigrostriatal degeneration in animal rodents and primates, inhibits the Hyperpolarization-activated current (Ih in SNpc DAergic neurons and that pharmacological Ih antagonism causes potentiation of evoked Excitatory post-synaptic potentials (EPSPs. Of note, the magnitude of such potentiation is greater in the SNpc subfield, consistent with higher Ih density. In the present work, we show that Ih block-induced synaptic potentiation leads to the amplification of somatic calcium responses (SCRs in vitro. This effect is specific for the SNpc subfield and largely mediated by L-Type calcium channels, as indicated by sensitivity to the CaV 1 blocker isradipine. Furthermore, Ih is downregulated by low intracellular ATP and determines the efficacy of GABAergic inhibition in SNpc DAergic neurons. Finally, we show that stereotaxic administration of Ih blockers causes SNpc-specific neurodegeneration and hemiparkinsonian motor phenotype in rats. During PD progression, Ih downregulation may result from mitochondrial dysfunction and, in concert with PD-related disinhibition of excitatory inputs, determine a SNpc-specific disease pathway.

  15. Cross-species functional analyses reveal shared and separate roles for Sox11 in frog primary neurogenesis and mouse cortical neuronal differentiation

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    Chao Chen

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available A well-functioning brain requires production of the correct number and types of cells during development; cascades of transcription factors are essential for cellular coordination. Sox proteins are transcription factors that affect various processes in the development of the nervous system. Sox11, a member of the SoxC family, is expressed in differentiated neurons and supports neuronal differentiation in several systems. To understand how generalizable the actions of Sox11 are across phylogeny, its function in the development of the frog nervous system and the mouse cerebral cortex were compared. Expression of Sox11 is largely conserved between these species; in the developing frog, Sox11 is expressed in the neural plate, neural tube and throughout the segmented brain, while in the mouse cerebral cortex, Sox11 is expressed in differentiated zones, including the preplate, subplate, marginal zone and cortical plate. In both frog and mouse, data demonstrate that Sox11 supports a role in promoting neuronal differentiation, with Sox11-positive cells expressing pan-neural markers and becoming morphologically complex. However, frog and mouse Sox11 cannot substitute for one another; a functional difference likely reflected in sequence divergence. Thus, Sox11 appears to act similarly in subserving neuronal differentiation but is species-specific in frog neural development and mouse corticogenesis.

  16. BAF53b, a Neuron-Specific Nucleosome Remodeling Factor, Is Induced after Learning and Facilitates Long-Term Memory Consolidation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoo, Miran; Choi, Kwang-Yeon; Kim, Jieun; Kim, Mujun; Shim, Jaehoon; Choi, Jun-Hyeok; Cho, Hye-Yeon; Oh, Jung-Pyo; Kim, Hyung-Su; Kaang, Bong-Kiun; Han, Jin-Hee

    2017-03-29

    Although epigenetic mechanisms of gene expression regulation have recently been implicated in memory consolidation and persistence, the role of nucleosome-remodeling is largely unexplored. Recent studies show that the functional loss of BAF53b, a postmitotic neuron-specific subunit of the BAF nucleosome-remodeling complex, results in the deficit of consolidation of hippocampus-dependent memory and cocaine-associated memory in the rodent brain. However, it is unclear whether BAF53b expression is regulated during memory formation and how BAF53b regulates fear memory in the amygdala, a key brain site for fear memory encoding and storage. To address these questions, we used viral vector approaches to either decrease or increase BAF53b function specifically in the lateral amygdala of adult mice in auditory fear conditioning paradigm. Knockdown of Baf53b before training disrupted long-term memory formation with no effect on short-term memory, basal synaptic transmission, and spine structures. We observed in our qPCR analysis that BAF53b was induced in the lateral amygdala neurons at the late consolidation phase after fear conditioning. Moreover, transient BAF53b overexpression led to persistently enhanced memory formation, which was accompanied by increase in thin-type spine density. Together, our results provide the evidence that BAF53b is induced after learning, and show that such increase of BAF53b level facilitates memory consolidation likely by regulating learning-related spine structural plasticity. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Recent works in the rodent brain begin to link nucleosome remodeling-dependent epigenetic mechanism to memory consolidation. Here we show that BAF53b, an epigenetic factor involved in nucleosome remodeling, is induced in the lateral amygdala neurons at the late phase of consolidation after fear conditioning. Using specific gene knockdown or overexpression approaches, we identify the critical role of BAF53b in the lateral amygdala neurons for

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

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    Lígia Sousa-Ferreira

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James R Caffrey

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

  20. Sex-Specific Effects of Stress on Oxytocin Neurons Correspond With Responses to Intranasal Oxytocin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steinman, Michael Q; Duque-Wilckens, Natalia; Greenberg, Gian D; Hao, Rebecca; Campi, Katharine L; Laredo, Sarah A; Laman-Maharg, Abigail; Manning, Claire E; Doig, Ian E; Lopez, Eduardo M; Walch, Keenan; Bales, Karen L; Trainor, Brian C

    2016-09-01

    Oxytocin (OT) is considered to be a stress-buffering hormone, dampening the physiologic effects of stress. However, OT can also be anxiogenic. We examined acute and long-lasting effects of social defeat on OT neurons in male and female California mice. We used immunohistochemistry for OT and c-fos cells to examine OT neuron activity immediately after defeat (n = 6-9) and 2 weeks (n = 6-9) and 10 weeks (n = 4-5) later. We quantified Oxt messenger RNA with quantitative polymerase chain reaction (n = 5-9). Intranasal OT was administered to naïve and stressed mice tested in social interaction and resident-intruder tests (n = 8-14). Acute exposure to a third episode of defeat increased OT/c-fos colocalizations in the paraventricular nucleus of both sexes. In the medioventral bed nucleus of the stria terminalis, defeat increased Oxt messenger RNA, total OT neurons, and OT/c-fos colocalizations in female mice but not male mice. Intranasal OT failed to reverse stress-induced social withdrawal in female mice and reduced social interaction behavior in female mice naïve to defeat. In contrast, intranasal OT increased social interaction in stressed male mice and reduced freezing in the resident-intruder test. Social defeat induces long-lasting increases in OT production and OT/c-fos cells in the medioventral bed nucleus of the stria terminalis of female mice but not male mice. Intranasal OT largely reversed the effects of stress on behavior in male mice, but effects were mixed in female mice. These results suggest that changes in OT-sensitive networks contribute to sex differences in behavioral responses to stress. Copyright © 2015 Society of Biological Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Female-Specific Glucose Sensitivity of GnRH1 Neurons Leads to Sexually Dimorphic Inhibition of Reproduction in Medaka.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hasebe, Masaharu; Kanda, Shinji; Oka, Yoshitaka

    2016-11-01

    Close interaction exists between energy-consuming reproduction and nutritional status. However, there are differences in costs and priority for reproduction among species and even between sexes, which leads to diversification of interactions between reproduction and nutritional status. Despite such diversified interactions among species and sexes, most of the analysis of the nutritional status-dependent regulation of reproduction has been limited to an endothermic vertebrate, mammalian species of either sex. Therefore, the mechanisms underlying the diversified interactions remain elusive. In the present study, we demonstrated the effects of malnutritional status on reproduction at both organismal and cellular levels in an ectothermic vertebrate, a teleost medaka of both sexes. First, we analyzed the effects of malnutrition by fasting on gonadosomatic index, number of spawned/fertilized eggs, and courtship behavior. Fasting strongly suppressed reproduction in females but, surprisingly, not in males. Next, we analyzed the effects of fasting on firing activity of hypothalamic GnRH1 neurons, which form the final common pathway for the control of reproduction. An electrophysiological analysis showed that low glucose, which is induced by fasting, directly suppresses the firing activity of GnRH1 neurons specifically in females through intracellular ATP-sensitive potassium channels and AMP-activated protein kinase pathways. Based on the fact that such suppressions occurred only in females, we conclude that nutritional status-dependent, glucose-sensing in GnRH1 neurons may contribute to the most fitted reproductive regulation for each sex.

  2. Theoretical Neuroanatomy:Analyzing the Structure, Dynamics,and Function of Neuronal Networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seth, Anil K.; Edelman, Gerald M.

    The mammalian brain is an extraordinary object: its networks give rise to our conscious experiences as well as to the generation of adaptive behavior for the organism within its environment. Progress in understanding the structure, dynamics and function of the brain faces many challenges. Biological neural networks change over time, their detailed structure is difficult to elucidate, and they are highly heterogeneous both in their neuronal units and synaptic connections. In facing these challenges, graph-theoretic and information-theoretic approaches have yielded a number of useful insights and promise many more.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borg, Rebecca; Cauchi, Ruben J

    2013-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fero Matthew

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The response of mammalian glial cells to chronic degeneration and trauma is hypothesized to be incompatible with support of neuronal function in the central nervous system (CNS and retina. To test this hypothesis, we developed an inducible model of proliferative reactive gliosis in the absence of degenerative stimuli by genetically inactivating the cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor p27Kip1 (p27 or Cdkn1b in the adult mouse and determined the outcome on retinal structure and function. Results p27-deficient Müller glia reentered the cell cycle, underwent aberrant migration, and enhanced their expression of intermediate filament proteins, all of which are characteristics of Müller glia in a reactive state. Surprisingly, neuroglial interactions, retinal electrophysiology, and visual acuity were normal. Conclusion The benign outcome of proliferative reactive Müller gliosis suggests that reactive glia display context-dependent, graded and dynamic phenotypes and that reactivity in itself is not necessarily detrimental to neuronal function.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1988-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-02-01

    Compared with the Monte Carlo method, the population density method is efficient for modeling collective dynamics of neuronal populations in human brain. In this method, a population density function describes the probabilistic distribution of states of all neurons in the population and it is governed by a hyperbolic partial differential equation. In the past, the problem was mainly solved by using the finite difference method. In a previous study, a continuous Galerkin finite element method was found better than the finite difference method for solving the hyperbolic partial differential equation; however, the population density function often has discontinuity and both methods suffer from a numerical stability problem. The goal of this study is to improve the numerical stability of the solution using discontinuous Galerkin finite element method. To test the performance of the new approach, interaction of a population of cortical pyramidal neurons and a population of thalamic neurons was simulated. The numerical results showed good agreement between results of discontinuous Galerkin finite element and Monte Carlo methods. The convergence and accuracy of the solutions are excellent. The numerical stability problem could be resolved using the discontinuous Galerkin finite element method which has total-variation-diminishing property. The efficient approach will be employed to simulate the electroencephalogram or dynamics of thalamocortical network which involves three populations, namely, thalamic reticular neurons, thalamocortical neurons and cortical pyramidal neurons. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Defective neuronal migration and inhibition of bipolar to multipolar transition of migrating neural cells by Mesoderm-Specific Transcript, Mest, in the developing mouse neocortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ji, Liting; Bishayee, Kausik; Sadra, Ali; Choi, Seunghyuk; Choi, Wooyul; Moon, Sungho; Jho, Eek-Hoon; Huh, Sung-Oh

    2017-07-04

    Brain developmental disorders such as lissencephaly can result from faulty neuronal migration and differentiation during the formation of the mammalian neocortex. The cerebral cortex is a modular structure, where developmentally, newborn neurons are generated as a neuro-epithelial sheet and subsequently differentiate, migrate and organize into their final positions in the cerebral cortical plate via a process involving both tangential and radial migration. The specific role of Mest, an imprinted gene, in neuronal migration has not been previously studied. In this work, we reduced expression of Mest with in utero electroporation of neuronal progenitors in the developing embryonic mouse neocortex. Reduction of Mest levels by shRNA significantly reduced the number of neurons migrating to the cortical plate. Also, Mest-knockdown disrupted the transition of bipolar neurons into multipolar neurons migrating out of the sub-ventricular zone region. The migrating neurons also adopted a more tangential migration pattern upon knockdown of the Mest message, losing their potential to attach to radial glia cells, required for radial migration. The differentiation and migration properties of neurons via Wnt-Akt signaling were affected by Mest changes. In addition, miR-335, encoded in a Mest gene intron, was identified as being responsible for blocking the default tangential migration of the neurons. Our results suggest that Mest and its intron product, miR-335, play important roles in neuronal migration with Mest regulating the morphological transition of primary neurons required in the formation of the mammalian neocortex. Copyright © 2017 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. The transcriptional repressor Zbtb20 is essential for specification of hippocampal projection neurons and territory in mice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rosenthal, Eva Helga

    for specification of both hippocampal pyramidal neurons and territory in a mouse knockout model. Homozygous Zbtb20-/- mice are viable at birth, but display dwarfism and die during the first month of postnatal life. Characterization of the Zbtb20-/- brain phenotype reveals a small vestigial hippocampus...... with a dramatic change in the molecular patterning of the subiculum and Ammon’s horn. In absence of Zbtb20, the pattern of expression of distinct molecular markers was altered at four borders: retrosplenial cortex/subiculum, subiculum/CA1, CA1/CA2, and CA2/CA3, leading to a replacement of Ammon’s horn...

  9. Specific rescue by ortho-hydroxy atorvastatin of cortical GABAergic neurons from previous oxygen/glucose deprivation: role of pCREB.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guirao, Verónica; Martí-Sistac, Octavi; DeGregorio-Rocasolano, Núria; Ponce, Jovita; Dávalos, Antoni; Gasull, Teresa

    2017-11-01

    The statin atorvastatin (ATV) given as a post-treatment has been reported beneficial in stroke, although the mechanisms involved are not well understood so far. Here, we investigated in vitro the effect of post-treatment with ATV and its main bioactive metabolite ortho-hydroxy ATV (o-ATV) on neuroprotection after oxygen and glucose deprivation (OGD), and the role of the pro-survival cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB). Post-OGD treatment of primary cultures of rat cortical neurons with o-ATV, but not ATV, provided neuroprotection to a specific subset of cortical neurons that were large and positive for glutamic acid decarboxylase (large-GAD (+) neurons, GABAergic). Significantly, only these GABAergic neurons showed an increase in phosphorylated CREB (pCREB) early after neuronal cultures were treated post-OGD with o-ATV. We found that o-ATV, but not ATV, increased the neuronal uptake of glutamate from the medium; this provides a rationale for the specific effect of o-ATV on pCREB in large-GABAergic neurons, which have a higher ratio of synaptic (pCREB-promoting) vs extrasynaptic (pCREB-reducing) N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptors (NMDAR) than that of small-non-GABAergic neurons. When we pharmacologically increased pCREB levels post-OGD in non-GABAergic neurons, through the selective activation of synaptic NMDAR, we observed as well long-lasting neuronal survival. We propose that the statin metabolite o-ATV given post-OGD boosts the intrinsic pro-survival factor pCREB in large-GABAergic cortical neurons in vitro, this contributing to protect them from OGD. © 2017 International Society for Neurochemistry.

  10. Discovery of talatisamine as a novel specific blocker for the delayed rectifier K+ channels in rat hippocampal neurons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, M-K; Liu, H; Jiang, H-L; Yue, J-M; Hu, G-Y; Chen, H-Z

    2008-08-13

    Blocking specific K+ channels has been proposed as a promising strategy for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. Using a computational virtual screening approach and electrophysiological testing, we found four Aconitum alkaloids are potent blockers of the delayed rectifier K+ channel in rat hippocampal neurons. In the present study, we first tested the action of the four alkaloids on the voltage-gated K+, Na+ and Ca2+ currents in rat hippocampal neurons, and then identified that talatisamine is a specific blocker for the delayed rectifier K+ channel. External application of talatisamine reversibly inhibited the delayed rectifier K+ current (IK) with an IC50 value of 146.0+/-5.8 microM in a voltage-dependent manner, but exhibited very slight blocking effect on the voltage-gated Na+ and Ca2+ currents even at the high concentration of 1-3 mM. Moreover, talatisamine exerted a significant hyperpolarizing shift of the steady-state activation, but did not influence the steady state inactivation of IK and its recovery from inactivation, suggesting that talatisamine had no allosteric action on IK channel and was a pure blocker binding to the external pore entry of the channel. Our present study made the first discovery of potent and specific IK channel blocker from Aconitum alkaloids. It has been argued that suppressing K+ efflux by blocking IK channel may be favorable for Alzheimer's disease therapy. Talatisamine can therefore be considered as a leading compound worthy of further investigations.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2017-01-01

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

  12. Gene expression profiling for human iPS-derived motor neurons from sporadic ALS patients reveals a strong association between mitochondrial functions and neurodegeneration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alves, Chrystian J.; Dariolli, Rafael; Jorge, Frederico M.; Monteiro, Matheus R.; Maximino, Jessica R.; Martins, Roberto S.; Strauss, Bryan E.; Krieger, José E.; Callegaro, Dagoberto; Chadi, Gerson

    2015-01-01

    Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal neurodegenerative disease that leads to widespread motor neuron death, general palsy and respiratory failure. The most prevalent sporadic ALS form is not genetically inherited. Attempts to translate therapeutic strategies have failed because the described mechanisms of disease are based on animal models carrying specific gene mutations and thus do not address sporadic ALS. In order to achieve a better approach to study the human disease, human induced pluripotent stem cell (hiPSC)-differentiated motor neurons were obtained from motor nerve fibroblasts of sporadic ALS and non-ALS subjects using the STEMCCA Cre-Excisable Constitutive Polycistronic Lentivirus system and submitted to microarray analyses using a whole human genome platform. DAVID analyses of differentially expressed genes identified molecular function and biological process-related genes through Gene Ontology. REVIGO highlighted the related functions mRNA and DNA binding, GTP binding, transcription (co)-repressor activity, lipoprotein receptor binding, synapse organization, intracellular transport, mitotic cell cycle and cell death. KEGG showed pathways associated with Parkinson's disease and oxidative phosphorylation, highlighting iron homeostasis, neurotrophic functions, endosomal trafficking and ERK signaling. The analysis of most dysregulated genes and those representative of the majority of categorized genes indicates a strong association between mitochondrial function and cellular processes possibly related to motor neuron degeneration. In conclusion, iPSC-derived motor neurons from motor nerve fibroblasts of sporadic ALS patients may recapitulate key mechanisms of neurodegeneration and may offer an opportunity for translational investigation of sporadic ALS. Large gene profiling of differentiated motor neurons from sporadic ALS patients highlights mitochondrial participation in the establishment of autonomous mechanisms associated with sporadic ALS

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2004-08-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Fangyong; Yuan, Yuan; Li, Jianjun

    2015-12-01

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

  15. Evaluation of epididymal function through specific protein on spermatozoa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Del Río, A G; De Sánchez, L Z; Sirena, A

    1984-01-01

    Investigations were focused on the characterization of specific epididymal proteins on the human spermatozoa as a representative parameter for epididymal function. An easy and attainable method, suitable for investigators and clinical use, is proposed in this article.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tsukasa Gotow

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Simple photoreceptors, namely intrinsically light-sensitive neurons without microvilli and/or cilia, have long been known to exist in the central ganglia of crayfish, Aplysia, Onchidium, and Helix. These simple photoreceptors are not only first-order photosensory cells, but also second-order neurons (interneurons, relaying several kinds of sensory synaptic inputs. Another important issue is that the photoresponses of these simple photoreceptors show very slow kinetics and little adaptation. These characteristics suggest that the simple photoreceptors of the Onchidium have a function in non-image-forming vision, different from classical eye photoreceptors used for cording dynamic images of vision. The cited literature provides evidence that the depolarizing and hyperpolarizing photoresponses of simple photoreceptors play a role in the long-lasting potentiation of synaptic transmission of excitatory and inhibitory sensory inputs, and as well as in the potentiation and the suppression of the subsequent behavioral outputs. In short, we suggest that simple photoreceptors operate in the general potentiation of synaptic transmission and subsequent motor output; i.e., they perform a new photosensory function.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joy A Umbach

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Franceschini Alessia

    2012-11-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-11-21

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jessica Alves de Medeiros Araújo

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Reprogramming of somatic cells into induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS or directly into cells from a different lineage, including neurons, has revolutionized research in regenerative medicine in recent years. Mesenchymal stem cells are good candidates for lineage reprogramming and autologous transplantation, since they can be easily isolated from accessible sources in adult humans, such as bone marrow and dental tissues. Here, we demonstrate that expression of the transcription factors (TFs SRY (sex determining region Y-box 2 (Sox2, Mammalian achaete-scute homolog 1 (Ascl1, or Neurogenin 2 (Neurog2 is sufficient for reprogramming human umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells (hUCMSC into induced neurons (iNs. Furthermore, the combination of Sox2/Ascl1 or Sox2/Neurog2 is sufficient to reprogram up to 50% of transfected hUCMSCs into iNs showing electrical properties of mature neurons and establishing synaptic contacts with co-culture primary neurons. Finally, we show evidence supporting the notion that different combinations of TFs (Sox2/Ascl1 and Sox2/Neurog2 may induce multiple and overlapping neuronal phenotypes in lineage-reprogrammed iNs, suggesting that neuronal fate is determined by a combination of signals involving the TFs used for reprogramming but also the internal state of the converted cell. Altogether, the data presented here contribute to the advancement of techniques aiming at obtaining specific neuronal phenotypes from lineage-converted human somatic cells to treat neurological disorders.

  1. Loss of spastin function results in disease-specific axonal defects in human pluripotent stem cell-based models of hereditary spastic paraplegia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Denton, Kyle R.; Lei, Ling; Grenier, Jeremy; Rodionov, Vladimir; Blackstone, Craig; Li, Xue-Jun

    2013-01-01

    Human neuronal models of hereditary spastic paraplegias (HSP) that recapitulate disease-specific axonal pathology hold the key to understanding why certain axons degenerate in patients and to developing therapies. SPG4, the most common form of HSP, is caused by autosomal dominant mutations in the SPAST gene, which encodes the microtubule-severing ATPase spastin. Here, we have generated a human neuronal model of SPG4 by establishing induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) from an SPG4 patient and differentiating these cells into telencephalic glutamatergic neurons. The SPG4 neurons displayed a significant increase in axonal swellings, which stained strongly for mitochondria and tau, indicating the accumulation of axonal transport cargoes. In addition, mitochondrial transport was decreased in SPG4 neurons, revealing that these patient iPSC-derived neurons recapitulate disease-specific axonal phenotypes. Interestingly, spastin protein levels were significantly decreased in SPG4 neurons, supporting a haploinsufficiency mechanism. Furthermore, cortical neurons derived from spastin-knockdown human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) exhibited similar axonal swellings, confirming that the axonal defects can be caused by loss of spastin function. These spastin-knockdown hESCs serve as an additional model for studying HSP. Finally, levels of stabilized acetylated-tubulin were significantly increased in SPG4 neurons. Vinblastine, a microtubule-destabilizing drug, rescued this axonal swelling phenotype in neurons derived from both SPG4 iPSCs and spastin-knockdown hESCs. Thus, this study demonstrates the successful establishment of human pluripotent stem cell-based neuronal models of SPG4, which will be valuable for dissecting the pathogenic cellular mechanisms and screening compounds to rescue the axonal degeneration in HSP. PMID:24123785

  2. Biological Variation and Reference Change Value Data for Serum Neuron-Specific Enolase in a Turkish Population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matyar, Selcuk; Goruroglu Ozturk, Ozlem; Ziyanoglu Karacor, Esin; Yuzbasioglu Ariyurek, Sedefgul; Sahin, Gulhan; Kibar, Filiz; Yaman, Akgun; Inal, Tamer

    2016-11-01

    Neuron-specific enolase (NSE) is a recognized biomarker for the assessment of cerebral injury in neurological disorders. This study aims to report a definitive assessment of the biological variation (BV) components of this biomarker, including within-subject BV (CVI), between-subject BV (CVG), index of individuality (II), and reference change value (RCV), in a cohort of Turkish participants using an experimental protocol. Six blood specimens were collected from each of the 13 apparently healthy volunteers (seven women, six men; ranging in age from 23 to 36) on the same day, every 2 weeks for 2 months. Serum specimens were stored at -20°C until analysis. Neuron-specific enolase levels were evaluated in serum samples using an electrochemiluminescence (ECLIA) immunoassay kit with a Roche Cobas e 411 auto-analyser. ANOVA test was used to calculate the variations. The CVI and CVG for NSE were 21.5% and 28.8%, respectively. Analytical variation (CVA) was calculated as 10.2%. Additionally, II and RCV were calculated as 0.74 and 66% (95% confident interval, CI), respectively. As the performance index (PI) was found to be less than 2 (PI = 0.95), it is concluded that the NSE measurements have a desirable performance for analytical imprecision. Since the II was found to be less than 1 (II: 0.74), the reference values will be of little use. Thus, RCV would provide better information for deciding whether a significant change has occurred. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  3. Biomarkers S100B and neuron-specific enolase predict outcome in hypothermia-treated encephalopathic newborns*.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Massaro, An N; Chang, Taeun; Baumgart, Stephen; McCarter, Robert; Nelson, Karin B; Glass, Penny

    2014-09-01

    To evaluate if serum S100B protein and neuron-specific enolase measured during therapeutic hypothermia are predictive of neurodevelopmental outcome at 15 months in children with neonatal encephalopathy. Prospective longitudinal cohort study. A level IV neonatal ICU in a freestanding children's hospital. Term newborns with moderate to severe neonatal encephalopathy referred for therapeutic hypothermia during the study period. Serum neuron-specific enolase and S100B were measured at 0, 12, 24, and 72 hours of hypothermia. Of the 83 infants enrolled, 15 (18%) died in the newborn period. Survivors were evaluated by the Bayley Scales of Infant Development-II at 15 months. Outcomes were assessed in 49 of 68 survivors (72%) at a mean age of 15.2 ± 2.7 months. Neurodevelopmental outcome was classified by Bayley Scales of Infant Development-II Mental Developmental Index and Psychomotor Developmental Index scores, reflecting cognitive and motor outcomes, respectively. Four-level outcome classifications were defined a priori: normal = Mental Developmental Index/Psychomotor Developmental Index within 1 SD (> 85), mild = Mental Developmental Index/Psychomotor Developmental Index less than 1 SD (70-85), moderate/severe = Mental Developmental Index/Psychomotor Developmental Index less than 2 SD (encephalopathy are associated with neurodevelopmental outcome at 15 months. These putative biomarkers of brain injury may help direct care during therapeutic hypothermia.

  4. Functional differentiation of macaque visual temporal cortical neurons using a parametric action space.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vangeneugden, Joris; Pollick, Frank; Vogels, Rufin

    2009-03-01

    Neurons in the rostral superior temporal sulcus (STS) are responsive to displays of body movements. We employed a parametric action space to determine how similarities among actions are represented by visual temporal neurons and how form and motion information contributes to their responses. The stimulus space consisted of a stick-plus-point-light figure performing arm actions and their blends. Multidimensional scaling showed that the responses of temporal neurons represented the ordinal similarity between these actions. Further tests distinguished neurons responding equally strongly to static presentations and to actions ("snapshot" neurons), from those responding much less strongly to static presentations, but responding well when motion was present ("motion" neurons). The "motion" neurons were predominantly found in the upper bank/fundus of the STS, and "snapshot" neurons in the lower bank of the STS and inferior temporal convexity. Most "motion" neurons showed strong response modulation during the course of an action, thus responding to action kinematics. "Motion" neurons displayed a greater average selectivity for these simple arm actions than did "snapshot" neurons. We suggest that the "motion" neurons code for visual kinematics, whereas the "snapshot" neurons code for form/posture, and that both can contribute to action recognition, in agreement with computation models of action recognition.

  5. Prevention of Hippocampal Neuronal Damage and Cognitive Function Deficits in Vascular Dementia by Dextromethorphan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Xiaofeng; Zhang, Bin; Lu, Kaili; Deng, Jiangshan; Zhao, Fei; Zhao, Bing-Qiao; Zhao, Yuwu

    2016-07-01

    Dextromethorphan (DM) is a non-competitive antagonist of NMDA receptors and a widely used component of cough medicine. Recently, its indication has been extended experimentally to a wide range of disorders including inflammation-mediated central nervous system disorders such as Parkinson disease (PD) and multiple sclerosis (MS). In this study, we investigate whether DM treatment has protective effects on the hippocampal neuron damage induced by bilateral occlusion of the common carotid arteries (two-vessel occlusion [2VO]), an animal model of vascular dementia (VaD). Sprague-Dawley (SD) (10 weeks of age) rats were subjected to the 2VO, and DM was injected intraperitoneally once per day for 37 days. Neuron death, glial activation, and cognitive function were assessed at 37 days after 2VO (0.2 mg/kg, i.p., "DM-0.2" and 2 mg/kg, i.p., "DM-2"). DM-2 treatment provided protection against neuronal death and glial activation in the hippocampal CA1 subfield and reduced cognitive impairment induced by 2VO in rats. The study also demonstrates that activation of the Nrf2-HO-1 pathway and upregulation of superoxide dismutase (SOD) play important roles in these effects. These results suggest that DM is effective in treating VaD and protecting against oxidative stress, which is strongly implicated in the pathogenesis of VaD. Therefore, the present study suggests that DM treatment may represent a new and promising protective strategy for treating VaD.

  6. The critical period for peripheral specification of dorsal root ganglion neurons is related to the period of sensory neurogenesis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Smith, C.L.

    1990-01-01

    Thoracic sensory neurons in bullfrog tadpoles can be induced to form connections typical of brachial sensory neurons by transplanting thoracic ganglia to the branchial level at stages when some thoracic sensory neurons already have formed connections. In order to find out how many postmitotic sensory neurons survive transplantation, [ 3 H]thymidine was administered to tadpoles in which thoracic ganglia were transplanted to the brachial level unilaterally at stages VII to IX. Between 16 and 37% of the neurons in transplanted ganglia were unlabeled, as compared to 46 to 60% in unoperated ganglia. Transplanted ganglia contained fewer unlabeled neurons than corresponding unoperated ganglia, indicating that transplantation caused degeneration of postmitotic neurons. Therefore, a large fraction of the neurons that formed connections typical of brachial sensory neurons probably differentiated while they were at the brachial level

  7. Lychee Seed Saponins Improve Cognitive Function and Prevent Neuronal Injury via Inhibiting Neuronal Apoptosis in a Rat Model of Alzheimer’s Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiuling Wang

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Lychee seed is a traditional Chinese medicine and possesses many activities, including hypoglycemia, liver protection, antioxidation, antivirus, and antitumor. However, its effect on neuroprotection is still unclear. The present study investigated the effects of lychee seed saponins (LSS on neuroprotection and associated mechanisms. We established a rat model of Alzheimer’s disease (AD by injecting Aβ25–35 into the lateral ventricle of rats and evaluated the effect of LSS on spatial learning and memory ability via the Morris water maze. Neuronal apoptosis was analyzed by hematoxylin and eosin stain and terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase (Tdt-mediated dUTP nick-end labeling analysis, and mRNA expression of caspase-3 and protein expressions of Bax and Bcl-2 by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR and Western blotting, respectively. The results showed that LSS remarkably improved cognitive function and alleviated neuronal injury by inhibiting apoptosis in the hippocampus of AD rats. Furthermore, the mRNA expression of caspase-3 and the protein expression of Bax were downregulated, while the protein expression of Bcl-2 and the ratio of Bcl-2/Bax were increased by LSS. We demonstrate that LSS significantly improves cognitive function and prevent neuronal injury in the AD rats via regulation of the apoptosis pathway. Therefore, LSS may be developed as a nutritional supplement and sold as a drug for AD prevention and/or treatment.

  8. Semantic Relevance, Domain Specificity and the Sensory/Functional Theory of Category-Specificity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sartori, Giuseppe; Gnoato, Francesca; Mariani, Ilenia; Prioni, Sara; Lombardi, Luigi

    2007-01-01

    According to the sensory/functional theory of semantic memory, Living items rely more on Sensory knowledge than Non-living ones. The sensory/functional explanation of category-specificity assumes that semantic features are organised on the basis of their content. We report here a study on DAT patients with impaired performance on Living items and…

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alfred Xuyang Sun

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA-releasing interneurons play an important modulatory role in the cortex and have been implicated in multiple neurological disorders. Patient-derived interneurons could provide a foundation for studying the pathogenesis of these diseases as well as for identifying potential therapeutic targets. Here, we identified a set of genetic factors that could robustly induce human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs into GABAergic neurons (iGNs with high efficiency. We demonstrated that the human iGNs express neurochemical markers and exhibit mature electrophysiological properties within 6–8 weeks. Furthermore, in vitro, iGNs could form functional synapses with other iGNs or with human-induced glutamatergic neurons (iENs. Upon transplantation into immunodeficient mice, human iGNs underwent synaptic maturation and integration into host neural circuits. Taken together, our rapid and highly efficient single-step protocol to generate iGNs may be useful to both mechanistic and translational studies of human interneurons.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew Redmann

    2017-04-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

    HIGHLIGHTS We suggest classifying variability of neuronal responses as follows: false (associated with a lack of knowledge about the influential factors), "genuine harmful" (noise), "genuine neutral" (synonyms, repeats), and "genuine useful" (the basis of neuroplasticity and learning).The genuine neutral variability is considered in terms of the phenomenon of degeneracy.Of particular importance is the genuine useful variability that is considered as a potential basis for neuroplasticity and learning. This type of variability is considered in terms of the neural Darwinism theory. In many cases, neural signals detected under the same external experimental conditions significantly change from trial to trial. The variability phenomenon, which complicates extraction of reproducible results and is ignored in many studies by averaging, has attracted attention of researchers in recent years. In this paper, we classify possible types of variability based on its functional significance and describe features of each type. We describe the key adaptive significance of variability at the neural network level and the degeneracy phenomenon that may be important for learning processes in connection with the principle of neuronal group selection.

  12. Combining specificity determining and conserved residues improves functional site prediction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gelfand Mikhail S

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Predicting the location of functionally important sites from protein sequence and/or structure is a long-standing problem in computational biology. Most current approaches make use of sequence conservation, assuming that amino acid residues conserved within a protein family are most likely to be functionally important. Most often these approaches do not consider many residues that act to define specific sub-functions within a family, or they make no distinction between residues important for function and those more relevant for maintaining structure (e.g. in the hydrophobic core. Many protein families bind and/or act on a variety of ligands, meaning that conserved residues often only bind a common ligand sub-structure or perform general catalytic activities. Results Here we present a novel method for functional site prediction based on identification of conserved positions, as well as those responsible for determining ligand specificity. We define Specificity-Determining Positions (SDPs, as those occupied by conserved residues within sub-groups of proteins in a family having a common specificity, but differ between groups, and are thus likely to account for specific recognition events. We benchmark the approach on enzyme families of known 3D structure with bound substrates, and find that in nearly all families residues predicted by SDPsite are in contact with the bound substrate, and that the addition of SDPs significantly improves functional site prediction accuracy. We apply SDPsite to various families of proteins containing known three-dimensional structures, but lacking clear functional annotations, and discusse several illustrative examples. Conclusion The results suggest a better means to predict functional details for the thousands of protein structures determined prior to a clear understanding of molecular function.

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

    OpenAIRE

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

    2011-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1995-10-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

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

  16. Stage-specific functions of the small Rho GTPases Cdc42 and Rac1 for adult hippocampal neurogenesis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vadodaria, Krishna C; Brakebusch, Cord; Suter, Ueli

    2013-01-01

    The molecular mechanisms underlying the generation, maturation, and integration of new granule cells generated throughout life in the mammalian hippocampus remain poorly understood. Small Rho GTPases, such as Cdc42 and Rac1, have been implicated previously in neural stem/progenitor cell (NSPC......) proliferation and neuronal maturation during embryonic development. Here we used conditional genetic deletion and virus-based loss-of-function approaches to identify temporally distinct functions for Cdc42 and Rac1 in adult hippocampal neurogenesis. We found that Cdc42 is involved in mouse NSPC proliferation......, initial dendritic development, and dendritic spine maturation. In contrast, Rac1 is dispensable for early steps of neuronal development but is important for late steps of dendritic growth and spine maturation. These results establish cell-autonomous and stage-specific functions for the small Rho GTPases...

  17. Characterising the developmental profile of human embryonic stem cell-derived medium spiny neuron progenitors and assessing mature neuron function using a CRISPR-generated human DARPP-32WT/eGFP-AMP reporter line.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hunt, C P J; Pouton, C W; Haynes, J M

    2017-06-01

    In the developing ventral telencephalon, cells of the lateral ganglionic eminence (LGE) give rise to all medium spiny neurons (MSNs). This development occurs in response to a highly orchestrated series of morphogenetic stimuli that pattern the resultant neurons as they develop. Striatal MSNs are characterised by expression of dopamine receptors, dopamine-and cyclic AMP-regulated phosphoprotein (DARPP32) and the neurotransmitter GABA. In this study, we demonstrate that fine tuning Wnt and hedgehog (SHH) signaling early in human embryonic stem cell differentiation can induce a subpallial progenitor molecular profile. Stimulation of TGFβ signaling pathway by activin-A further supports patterning of progenitors to striatal precursors which adopt an LGE-specific gene signature. Moreover, we report that these MSNs also express markers associated with mature neuron function (cannabinoid, adenosine and dopamine receptors). To facilitate live-cell identification we generated a human embryonic stem cell line using CRISPR-mediated gene editing at the DARPP32 locus (DARPP32 WT/eGFP-AMP-LacZ ). The addition of dopamine to MSNs either increased, decreased or had no effect on intracellular calcium, indicating the presence of multiple dopamine receptor subtypes. In summary, we demonstrate greater control over early fate decisions using activin-A, Wnt and SHH to direct differentiation into MSNs. We also generate a DARPP32 reporter line that enables deeper pharmacological profiling and interrogation of complex receptor interactions in human MSNs. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-09-01

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

  19. Transplantation of specific human astrocytes promotes functional recovery after spinal cord injury.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen J A Davies

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Repairing trauma to the central nervous system by replacement of glial support cells is an increasingly attractive therapeutic strategy. We have focused on the less-studied replacement of astrocytes, the major support cell in the central nervous system, by generating astrocytes from embryonic human glial precursor cells using two different astrocyte differentiation inducing factors. The resulting astrocytes differed in expression of multiple proteins thought to either promote or inhibit central nervous system homeostasis and regeneration. When transplanted into acute transection injuries of the adult rat spinal cord, astrocytes generated by exposing human glial precursor cells to bone morphogenetic protein promoted significant recovery of volitional foot placement, axonal growth and notably robust increases in neuronal survival in multiple spinal cord laminae. In marked contrast, human glial precursor cells and astrocytes generated from these cells by exposure to ciliary neurotrophic factor both failed to promote significant behavioral recovery or similarly robust neuronal survival and support of axon growth at sites of injury. Our studies thus demonstrate functional differences between human astrocyte populations and suggest that pre-differentiation of precursor cells into a specific astrocyte subtype is required to optimize astrocyte replacement therapies. To our knowledge, this study is the first to show functional differences in ability to promote repair of the injured adult central nervous system between two distinct subtypes of human astrocytes derived from a common fetal glial precursor population. These findings are consistent with our previous studies of transplanting specific subtypes of rodent glial precursor derived astrocytes into sites of spinal cord injury, and indicate a remarkable conservation from rat to human of functional differences between astrocyte subtypes. In addition, our studies provide a specific population of human