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Sample records for neuronal substrate fuel

  1. Growth behavior of cochlear nucleus neuronal cells on semiconductor substrates.

    PubMed

    Rak, Kristen; Wasielewski, Natalia; Radeloff, Andreas; Scherzed, Agmal; Jablonka, Sibylle; Hagen, Rudolf; Mlynski, Robert

    2011-05-01

    Auditory brainstem implants provide sound information by direct stimulation of the cochlear nucleus to patients with dysfunctional or absent cranial nerve VIII. In contrast to patients with cochlear implants, the use of the auditory brainstem implants is less successful. This cannot be fully explained by the difference location of stimulation but a rather unspecific neuronal stimulation. The aim of this study was to further examine neuronal cells of the cochlear nucleus and to test their interactions with semiconductor substrates as a potential electrode material for improved auditory brainstem implants. The cochlear nuclei of postnatal day 7 rats were microsurgically dissected. The tissue was dissociated enzymatically and plated on coverslips as control and on the semiconductor substrates silicon or silicon nitride. After 4 days in culture the morphology and growth of dissociated cells was determined by fluorescence and scanning electron microscopy. Dissociated cells of the cochlear nucleus showed reduced cell growth on semiconductor substrates compared with controls. SEM analysis demonstrated close contact of neurons with supporting cells in culture and good adherence of neuronal growth cones on the used materials. These findings present basic knowledge for the development of neuron-electrode interfaces for future auditory brainstem implants. PMID:21370446

  2. Neuronal oscillations as a mechanistic substrate of auditory temporal prediction

    PubMed Central

    Morillon, Benjamin; Schroeder, Charles E.

    2014-01-01

    Neuronal oscillations are comprised of rhythmic fluctuations of excitability that are synchronized in ensembles of neurons and thus function as temporal filters that dynamically organize sensory processing. When perception relies on anticipatory mechanisms, ongoing oscillations also provide a neurophysiological substrate for temporal prediction. In this article we review evidence for this account with a focus on auditory perception. We argue that such “oscillatory temporal predictions” can selectively amplify neuronal sensitivity to inputs that occur in a predicted, task-relevant rhythm and optimize temporal selection. We elaborate this argument for a prototypic example, speech processing, where information is present at multiple time scales, with delta, theta, and low-gamma oscillations being specifically and simultaneously engaged, enabling multiplexing. We then consider the origin of temporal predictions, specifically the idea that the motor system is involved in the generation of such prior information. Finally, we place temporal predictions in the general context of internal models, discussing how they interact with feature-based or spatial predictions. We propose that complementary predictions interact synergistically according to a dominance hierarchy, shaping perception in the form of a multidimensional filter mechanism. PMID:25773613

  3. Decoding the Substrate Supply to Human Neuronal Nitric Oxide Synthase

    PubMed Central

    Habermeier, Alice; Closs, Ellen I.

    2013-01-01

    Nitric oxide, produced by the neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) from L-arginine is an important second messenger molecule in the central nervous system: It influences the synthesis and release of neurotransmitters and plays an important role in long-term potentiation, long-term depression and neuroendocrine secretion. However, under certain pathological conditions such as Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s disease, stroke and multiple sclerosis, excessive NO production can lead to tissue damage. It is thus desirable to control NO production in these situations. So far, little is known about the substrate supply to human nNOS as a determinant of its activity. Measuring bioactive NO via cGMP formation in reporter cells, we demonstrate here that nNOS in both, human A673 neuroepithelioma and TGW-nu-I neuroblastoma cells can be fast and efficiently nourished by extracellular arginine that enters the cells via membrane transporters (pool I that is freely exchangeable with the extracellular space). When this pool was depleted, NO synthesis was partially sustained by intracellular arginine sources not freely exchangeable with the extracellular space (pool II). Protein breakdown made up by far the largest part of pool II in both cell types. In contrast, citrulline to arginine conversion maintained NO synthesis only in TGW-nu-I neuroblastoma, but not A673 neuroepithelioma cells. Histidine mimicked the effect of protease inhibitors causing an almost complete nNOS inhibition in cells incubated additionally in lysine that depletes the exchangeable arginine pool. Our results identify new ways to modulate nNOS activity by modifying its substrate supply. PMID:23874440

  4. The neuronal substrates of human olfactory based kin recognition.

    PubMed

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

    2009-08-01

    Kin recognition, an evolutionary phenomenon ubiquitous among phyla, is thought to promote an individual's genes by facilitating nepotism and avoidance of inbreeding. Whereas isolating and studying kin recognition mechanisms in humans using auditory and visual stimuli is problematic because of the high degree of conscious recognition of the individual involved, kin recognition based on body odors is done predominantly without conscious recognition. Using this, we mapped the neural substrates of human kin recognition by acquiring measures of regional cerebral blood flow from women smelling the body odors of either their sister or their same-sex friend. The initial behavioral experiment demonstrated that accurate identification of kin is performed with a low conscious recognition. The subsequent neuroimaging experiment demonstrated that olfactory based kin recognition in women recruited the frontal-temporal junction, the insula, and the dorsomedial prefrontal cortex; the latter area is implicated in the coding of self-referent processing and kin recognition. We further show that the neuronal response is seemingly independent of conscious identification of the individual source, demonstrating that humans have an odor based kin detection system akin to what has been shown for other mammals. PMID:19067327

  5. Patterning human neuronal networks on photolithographically engineered silicon dioxide substrates functionalized with glial analogues.

    PubMed

    Hughes, Mark A; Brennan, Paul M; Bunting, Andrew S; Cameron, Katherine; Murray, Alan F; Shipston, Mike J

    2014-05-01

    Interfacing neurons with silicon semiconductors is a challenge being tackled through various bioengineering approaches. Such constructs inform our understanding of neuronal coding and learning and ultimately guide us toward creating intelligent neuroprostheses. A fundamental prerequisite is to dictate the spatial organization of neuronal cells. We sought to pattern neurons using photolithographically defined arrays of polymer parylene-C, activated with fetal calf serum. We used a purified human neuronal cell line [Lund human mesencephalic (LUHMES)] to establish whether neurons remain viable when isolated on-chip or whether they require a supporting cell substrate. When cultured in isolation, LUHMES neurons failed to pattern and did not show any morphological signs of differentiation. We therefore sought a cell type with which to prepattern parylene regions, hypothesizing that this cellular template would enable secondary neuronal adhesion and network formation. From a range of cell lines tested, human embryonal kidney (HEK) 293 cells patterned with highest accuracy. LUHMES neurons adhered to pre-established HEK 293 cell clusters and this coculture environment promoted morphological differentiation of neurons. Neurites extended between islands of adherent cell somata, creating an orthogonally arranged neuronal network. HEK 293 cells appear to fulfill a role analogous to glia, dictating cell adhesion, and generating an environment conducive to neuronal survival. We next replaced HEK 293 cells with slower growing glioma-derived precursors. These primary human cells patterned accurately on parylene and provided a similarly effective scaffold for neuronal adhesion. These findings advance the use of this microfabrication-compatible platform for neuronal patterning. PMID:23733444

  6. Patterned growth of neuronal cells on modified diamond-like carbon substrates.

    PubMed

    Kelly, Stephen; Regan, Edward M; Uney, James B; Dick, Andrew D; McGeehan, Joseph P; Mayer, Eric J; Claeyssens, Frederik

    2008-06-01

    Diamond-like carbon (DLC) has been explored as a biomaterial with potential use for coating implantable devices and surgical instruments. In this study the interaction of DLC with mammalian neuronal cells has been studied along with its modifications to improve its function as a biomaterial. We describe the use of DLC, oxidised DLC and phosphorus-doped DLC to support the growth and survival of primary central nervous system neurones and neuroblastoma cells. None of these substrates were cytotoxic and primary neurones adhered better to phosphorus-doped DLC than unmodified DLC. This property was used to culture cortical neurones in a predetermined micropattern. This raises the potential of DLC as a biomaterial for central nervous system (CNS) implantation. Furthermore, patterned DLC and phosphorus-doped DLC can direct neuronal growth, generating a powerful tool to study neuronal networks in a spatially distinct way. This study reports the generation of nerve cell patterns via patterned deposition of DLC. PMID:18359076

  7. Patterning human neuronal networks on photolithographically engineered silicon dioxide substrates functionalized with glial analogues

    PubMed Central

    Hughes, Mark A; Brennan, Paul M; Bunting, Andrew S; Cameron, Katherine; Murray, Alan F; Shipston, Mike J

    2014-01-01

    Interfacing neurons with silicon semiconductors is a challenge being tackled through various bioengineering approaches. Such constructs inform our understanding of neuronal coding and learning and ultimately guide us toward creating intelligent neuroprostheses. A fundamental prerequisite is to dictate the spatial organization of neuronal cells. We sought to pattern neurons using photolithographically defined arrays of polymer parylene-C, activated with fetal calf serum. We used a purified human neuronal cell line [Lund human mesencephalic (LUHMES)] to establish whether neurons remain viable when isolated on-chip or whether they require a supporting cell substrate. When cultured in isolation, LUHMES neurons failed to pattern and did not show any morphological signs of differentiation. We therefore sought a cell type with which to prepattern parylene regions, hypothesizing that this cellular template would enable secondary neuronal adhesion and network formation. From a range of cell lines tested, human embryonal kidney (HEK) 293 cells patterned with highest accuracy. LUHMES neurons adhered to pre-established HEK 293 cell clusters and this coculture environment promoted morphological differentiation of neurons. Neurites extended between islands of adherent cell somata, creating an orthogonally arranged neuronal network. HEK 293 cells appear to fulfill a role analogous to glia, dictating cell adhesion, and generating an environment conducive to neuronal survival. We next replaced HEK 293 cells with slower growing glioma-derived precursors. These primary human cells patterned accurately on parylene and provided a similarly effective scaffold for neuronal adhesion. These findings advance the use of this microfabrication-compatible platform for neuronal patterning. © 2013 The Authors. Journal ofBiomedicalMaterials Research Part APublished byWiley Periodicals, Inc.Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Biomed Mater Res Part A: 102A: 1350–1360, 2014. PMID:23733444

  8. Agarose-Based Substrate Modification Technique for Chemical and Physical Guiding of Neurons In Vitro.

    PubMed

    Krumpholz, Katharina; Rogal, Julia; El Hasni, Akram; Schnakenberg, Uwe; Bräunig, Peter; Bui-Göbbels, Katrin

    2015-08-26

    A new low cost and highly reproducible technique is presented that provides patterned cell culture substrates. These allow for selective positioning of cells and a chemically and mechanically directed guiding of their extensions. The patterned substrates consist of structured agarose hydrogels molded from reusable silicon micro templates. These templates consist of pins arranged equidistantly in squares, connected by bars, which mold corresponding wells and channels in the nonadhesive agarose hydrogel. Subsequent slice production with a standard vibratome, comprising the described template pattern, completes substrate production. Invertebrate neurons of locusts and pond snails are used for this application as they offer the advantage over vertebrate cells as being very large and suitable for cultivation in low cell density. Their neurons adhere to and grow only on the adhesive areas not covered by the agarose. Agarose slices of 50 μm thickness placed on glass, polystyrene, or MEA surfaces position and immobilize the neurons in the wells, and the channels guide their neurite outgrowth toward neighboring wells. In addition to the application with invertebrate neurons, the technique may also provide the potential for the application of a wide range of cell types. Long-term objective is the achievement of isolated low-density neuronal networks on MEAs or different culture substrates for various network analysis applications. PMID:26237337

  9. Guiding neuron development with planar surface gradients of substrate cues deposited using microfluidic devices

    PubMed Central

    Millet, Larry J.; Stewart, Matthew E.; Nuzzo, Ralph G.

    2010-01-01

    Wiring the nervous system relies on the interplay of intrinsic and extrinsic signaling molecules that control neurite extension, neuronal polarity, process maturation and experience-dependent refinement. Extrinsic signals establish and enrich neuron-neuron interactions during development. Understanding how such extrinsic cues direct neurons to establish neural connections in vitro will facilitate the development of organised neural networks for investigating the development and function of nervous system networks. Producing ordered networks of neurons with defined connectivity in vitro presents special technical challenges because the results must be compliant with the biological requirements of rewiring neural networks. Here we demonstrate the ability to form stable, instructive surface-bound gradients of laminin that guide postnatal hippocampal neuron development in vitro. Our work uses a three-channel, interconnected microfluidic device that permits the production of adlayers of planar substrates through the combination of laminar flow, diffusion and physisorption. Through simple flow modifications, a variety of patterns and gradients of laminin (LN) and flourescein-conjugated poly-lysine (FITC-PLL) were deposited to present neurons with an instructive substratum to guide neuronal development. We present three variations in substrate design that produce distinct growth regimens for postnatal neurons in dispersed cell cultures. In the first approach, diffusion-mediated gradients of LN were formed on coverslips to guide neurons toward increasing LN concentrations. In the second approach, a combined gradient of LN and FITC-PLL was produced using aspiration-driven laminar flow to restrict neuronal growth to a 15 μm-wide growth zone at the center of the two superimposed gradients. The last approach demonstrates the capacity to combine binary lines of FITC-PLL in conjunction with surface gradients of LN and bovine serum albumin (BSA) to produce substrate adlayers

  10. Probing Mechanoregulation of Neuronal Differentiation by Plasma Lithography Patterned Elastomeric Substrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nam, Ki-Hwan; Jamilpour, Nima; Mfoumou, Etienne; Wang, Fei-Yue; Zhang, Donna D.; Wong, Pak Kin

    2014-11-01

    Cells sense and interpret mechanical cues, including cell-cell and cell-substrate interactions, in the microenvironment to collectively regulate various physiological functions. Understanding the influences of these mechanical factors on cell behavior is critical for fundamental cell biology and for the development of novel strategies in regenerative medicine. Here, we demonstrate plasma lithography patterning on elastomeric substrates for elucidating the influences of mechanical cues on neuronal differentiation and neuritogenesis. The neuroblastoma cells form neuronal spheres on plasma-treated regions, which geometrically confine the cells over two weeks. The elastic modulus of the elastomer is controlled simultaneously by the crosslinker concentration. The cell-substrate mechanical interactions are also investigated by controlling the size of neuronal spheres with different cell seeding densities. These physical cues are shown to modulate with the formation of focal adhesions, neurite outgrowth, and the morphology of neuroblastoma. By systematic adjustment of these cues, along with computational biomechanical analysis, we demonstrate the interrelated mechanoregulatory effects of substrate elasticity and cell size. Taken together, our results reveal that the neuronal differentiation and neuritogenesis of neuroblastoma cells are collectively regulated via the cell-substrate mechanical interactions.

  11. Substrate Three-Dimensionality Induces Elemental Morphological Transformation of Sensory Neurons on a Physiologic Timescale

    PubMed Central

    Ribeiro, Andreia; Vargo, Shelby; Powell, Elizabeth M.

    2012-01-01

    The natural environment of a neuron is the three-dimensional (3D) tissue. In vivo, embryonic sensory neurons transiently express a bipolar morphology with two opposing neurites before undergoing cytoplasmic and cytoskeletal rearrangement to a more mature pseudo-unipolar axonal arbor before birth. The unipolar morphology is crucial in the adult for correct information transmission from the periphery to the central nervous system. On two-dimensional (2D) substrates this transformation is delayed significantly or absent. We report that a 3D culture platform can invoke the characteristic transformation to the unipolar axonal arbor within a time frame similar to in vivo, overcoming the loss of this essential milestone in 2D substrates. Additionally, 3D substrates alone provided an environment that promoted axonal branching features that reflect morphological patterns observed in vivo. We have also analyzed the involvement of soluble cues in these morphogenic processes by culturing the neurons in the presence and absence of nerve growth factor (NGF), a molecule that plays distinct roles in the development of the peripheral and central nervous systems. Without NGF, both 2D and 3D cultures had significant decreases in the relative population of unipolar neurons as well as shorter neurite lengths and fewer branch points compared to cultures with NGF. Interestingly, branching features of neurons cultured in 3D without NGF resemble those of neurons cultured in 2D with NGF. Therefore, neurons cultured in 3D without NGF lost the ability to differentiate into unipolar neurons, suggesting that this morphological hallmark requires not only presentation of soluble cues like NGF, but also the surrounding 3D presentation of adhesive ligands to allow for realization of the innate morphogenic program. We propose that in a 3D environment, various matrix and soluble cues are presented toward all surfaces of the cell; this optimized milieu allows neurons to elaborate their genuine

  12. Macroscopic and Macromolecular Specificity of Alkylphenol Anesthetics for Neuronal Substrates

    PubMed Central

    Weiser, Brian P.; Hall, Michael A.; Weinbren, Nathan L.; Woll, Kellie A.; Dailey, William P.; Eckenhoff, Maryellen F.; Eckenhoff, Roderic G.

    2015-01-01

    We used a photoactive general anesthetic called meta-azi-propofol (AziPm) to test the selectivity and specificity of alkylphenol anesthetic binding in mammalian brain. Photolabeling of rat brain sections with [3H]AziPm revealed widespread but heterogeneous ligand distribution, with [3H]AziPm preferentially binding to synapse-dense areas compared to areas composed largely of cell bodies or myelin. With [3H]AziPm and propofol, we determined that alkylphenol general anesthetics bind selectively and specifically to multiple synaptic protein targets. In contrast, the alkylphenol anesthetics do not bind to specific sites on abundant phospholipids or cholesterol, although [3H]AziPm shows selectivity for photolabeling phosphatidylethanolamines. Together, our experiments suggest that alkylphenol anesthetic substrates are widespread in number and distribution, similar to those of volatile general anesthetics, and that multi-target mechanisms likely underlie their pharmacology. PMID:25853337

  13. Identification of Phosphorylation Consensus Sequences and Endogenous Neuronal Substrates of the Psychiatric Risk Kinase TNIK.

    PubMed

    Wang, Qi; Amato, Stephen P; Rubitski, David M; Hayward, Matthew M; Kormos, Bethany L; Verhoest, Patrick R; Xu, Lan; Brandon, Nicholas J; Ehlers, Michael D

    2016-02-01

    Traf2- and Nck-interacting kinase (TNIK) is a serine/threonine kinase highly expressed in the brain and enriched in the postsynaptic density of glutamatergic synapses in the mammalian brain. Accumulating genetic evidence and functional data have implicated TNIK as a risk factor for psychiatric disorders. However, the endogenous substrates of TNIK in neurons are unknown. Here, we describe a novel selective small molecule inhibitor of the TNIK kinase family. Using this inhibitor, we report the identification of endogenous neuronal TNIK substrates by immunoprecipitation with a phosphomotif antibody followed by mass spectrometry. Phosphorylation consensus sequences were defined by phosphopeptide sequence analysis. Among the identified substrates were members of the delta-catenin family including p120-catenin, δ-catenin, and armadillo repeat gene deleted in velo-cardio-facial syndrome (ARVCF), each of which is linked to psychiatric or neurologic disorders. Using p120-catenin as a representative substrate, we show TNIK-induced p120-catenin phosphorylation in cells requires intact kinase activity and phosphorylation of TNIK at T181 and T187 in the activation loop. Addition of the small molecule TNIK inhibitor or knocking down TNIK by two shRNAs reduced endogenous p120-catenin phosphorylation in cells. Together, using a TNIK inhibitor and phosphomotif antibody, we identify endogenous substrates of TNIK in neurons, define consensus sequences for TNIK, and suggest signaling pathways by which TNIK influences synaptic development and function linked to psychiatric and neurologic disorders. PMID:26645429

  14. Gradients of substrate-bound laminin orient axonal specification of neurons

    PubMed Central

    Dertinger, Stephan K. W.; Jiang, Xingyu; Li, Zhiying; Murthy, Venkatesh N.; Whitesides, George M.

    2002-01-01

    Little is known about the influence of substrate-bound gradients on neuronal development, since it has been difficult to fabricate gradients over the distances typically required for biological studies (a few hundred micrometers). This article demonstrates a generally applicable technique for the fabrication of substrate-bound gradients of proteins with complex shapes, using laminar flows in microchannels. Gradients that range from pure laminin to pure BSA were formed in solution by using a network of microchannels, and these proteins were allowed to adsorb onto a homogeneous layer of poly-l-lysine. Rat hippocampal neurons were cultivated on these substrate-bound gradients. Analysis of optical images of these neurons showed that axon specification is oriented in the direction of increasing surface density of laminin. Linear gradients in laminin adsorbed from a gradient in solution having a slope of ∇[laminin] > about 0.06 μg (ml⋅μm)−1 (defined by dividing the change of concentration of laminin in solution over the distance of the gradient) orient axon specification, whereas those with ∇[laminin] < about 0.06 μg (ml⋅μm)−1 have no effect. PMID:12237407

  15. Functional mapping of the neuronal substrates for drug tolerance in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Ghezzi, Alfredo; Al-Hasan, Yazan M; Krishnan, Harish R; Wang, Yan; Atkinson, Nigel S

    2013-05-01

    Physical dependence on alcohol and anesthetics stems from neuroadaptive changes that act to counter the effects of sedation in the brain. In Drosophila, exposure to either alcohol or solvent anesthetics have been shown to induce changes in expression of the BK-type Ca(2+)-activated K(+) channel gene slo. An increase in slo expression produces an adaptive modulation of neural activity that generates resistance to sedation and promotes drug tolerance and dependence. Increased BK channel activity counteracts the sedative effects of these drugs by reducing the neuronal refractory period and enhancing the capacity of neurons for repetitive firing. However, the brain regions or neuronal populations capable of producing inducible resistance or tolerance remain unknown. Here we map the neuronal substrates relevant for the slo-dependent modulation of drug sensitivity. Using spatially-controlled induction of slo expression we identify the mushroom bodies, the ellipsoid body and a subset of the circadian clock neurons as pivotal regions for the control of recovery from sedation. PMID:23371357

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

  17. Ceria catalyst for inert-substrate-supported tubular solid oxide fuel cells running on methane fuel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, Kai; Kim, Bok-Hee; Du, Yanhai; Xu, Qing; Ahn, Byung-Guk

    2016-05-01

    A ceria catalyst is applied to an inert-substrate supported tubular single cell for direct operation on methane fuel. The tubular single cell comprises a porous yttria-stabilized zirconia (YSZ) supporter, a Ni-Ce0.8Sm0.2O1.9 anode, a YSZ/Ce0.8Sm0.2O1.9 bi-layer electrolyte, and a La0.6Sr0.4Co0.2Fe0.8O3-δ cathode. The ceria catalyst is incorporated into the porous YSZ supporter layer by a cerium nitrate impregnation. The effects of ceria on the microstructure and electrochemical performance of the tubular single cell are investigated with respect to the number of impregnations. The optimum number of impregnations is determined to be four based on the maximum power density and polarization property of the tubular single cell in hydrogen and methane fuels. At 700 °C, the tubular single cell shows similar maximum power densities of ∼260 mW cm-2 in hydrogen and methane fuels, respectively. Moreover, the ceria catalyst significantly improves the performance stability of the cell running on methane fuel. At a current density of 350 mA cm-2, the single cell shows a low degradation rate of 2.5 mV h-1 during the 13 h test in methane fuel. These results suggest the feasibility of applying the ceria catalyst to the inert-substrate supported tubular single cell for direct operation on methane fuel.

  18. The structural development of primary cultured hippocampal neurons on a graphene substrate.

    PubMed

    He, Zuhong; Zhang, Shasha; Song, Qin; Li, Wenyan; Liu, Dong; Li, Huawei; Tang, Mingliang; Chai, Renjie

    2016-10-01

    The potential of graphene-based nanomaterials as a neural interfacing material for neural repair and regeneration remains poorly understood. In the present study, the response to the graphene substrate by neurons was determined in a hippocampal culture model. The results revealed the growth and maturation of hippocampal cultures on graphene substrates were significantly improved compared to the commercial control. In details, graphene promoted growth cone growth and microtubule formation inside filopodia 24h after seeding as evidenced by a higher average number of filopodia emerging from growth cones, a longer average length of filopodia, and a larger growth cone area. Graphene also significantly boosted neurite sprouting and outgrowth. The dendritic length, the number of branch points, and the dendritic complex index were significantly improved on the graphene substrate during culture. Moreover, the spine density was enhanced and the maturation of dendritic spines from thin to stubby spines was significantly promoted on graphene at 21 days after seeding. Lastly, graphene significantly elevated the synapse density and synaptic activity in the hippocampal cultures. The present study highlights graphene's potential as a neural interfacing material for neural repair and regeneration and sheds light on the future biomedical applications of graphene-based nanomaterials. PMID:27395037

  19. Characterization of a variety of standard collagen substrates: ultrastructure, uniformity, and capacity to bind and promote growth of neurons

    SciTech Connect

    Iversen, P.L.; Partlow, L.M.; Stensaas, L.J.; Moatamed, F.

    1981-06-01

    Collagen substrates were characterized after preparation by the four methods most commonly used for tissue culture (saline precipitation, exposure to ammonium hydroxide vapor, exposure to ultraviolet light, and air drying). Although roughly equivalent percentages of collagen were precipitated by each technique (87 to 97%), marked differences were found in surface uniformity and ultrastructure. Substrates were quite uniform if precipitated by exposure to ammonium hydroxide or ultraviolet light, of intermediate uniformity if saline precipitated, and not at all uniform if air dried. Scanning electron microscopy revealed that (a) ammonium hydroxide and saline precipitation primarily resulted in formation of collagen fibrils, (b) air drying produced a small number of fibrils plus a large amount of amorphous material, and (c) exposure to ultraviolet light only resulted in the formation of globular, nonfibrillar collagen aggregates. The capacity of collagen substrates to bind and grow neurons differed markedly with the method of preparation and the amount of collagen plated per unit area. Quantifications of binding and growth of both cerebral and sympathetic neurons revealed that these are separate measures of the biocompatibility of a surface and that growth was uniformly inferior on globular collagen that had been precipitated by ultraviolet light. Long-term (greater than or equal to 2 wk) growth of sympathetic neurons was optimal on thick beds of saline-precipitated collagen, whereas short-term growth was best on thin layers of either saline or ammonium hydroxide-precipitated collagen. Cerebral neurons bound and grew optimally on thick collagen beds after both short- and long-term culture. In addition, cerebral neurons were found to be more dependent on the method of precipitation of the thin collagen substrates than were sympathetic neurons.

  20. Specific Neuron Placement on Gold and Silicon Nitride-Patterned Substrates through a Two-Step Functionalization Method.

    PubMed

    Mescola, Andrea; Canale, Claudio; Prato, Mirko; Diaspro, Alberto; Berdondini, Luca; Maccione, Alessandro; Dante, Silvia

    2016-06-28

    The control of neuron-substrate adhesion has been always a challenge for fabricating neuron-based cell chips and in particular for multielectrode array (MEA) devices, which warrants the investigation of the electrophysiological activity of neuronal networks. The recent introduction of high-density chips based on the complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) technology, integrating thousands of electrodes, improved the possibility to sense large networks and raised the challenge to develop newly adapted functionalization techniques to further increase neuron electrode localization to avoid the positioning of cells out of the recording area. Here, we present a simple and straightforward chemical functionalization method that leads to the precise and exclusive positioning of the neural cell bodies onto modified electrodes and inhibits, at the same time, cellular adhesion in the surrounding insulator areas. Different from other approaches, this technique does not require any adhesion molecule as well as complex patterning technique such as μ-contact printing. The functionalization was first optimized on gold (Au) and silicon nitride (Si3N4)-patterned surfaces. The procedure consisted of the introduction of a passivating layer of hydrophobic silane molecules (propyltriethoxysilane [PTES]) followed by a treatment of the Au surface using 11-amino-1-undecanethiol hydrochloride (AT). On model substrates, well-ordered neural networks and an optimal coupling between a single neuron and single micrometric functionalized Au surface were achieved. In addition, we presented the preliminary results of this functionalization method directly applied on a CMOS-MEA: the electrical spontaneous spiking and bursting activities of the network recorded for up to 4 weeks demonstrate an excellent and stable neural adhesion and functional behavior comparable with what expected using a standard adhesion factor, such as polylysine or laminin, thus demonstrating that this procedure can be

  1. Effects of substrate mineralogy on the biodegradability of fuel components

    SciTech Connect

    Apitz, S.E.; Meyers-Schulte, K.J.

    1996-11-01

    Experiments were carried out to determine the effects of mineralogy on the biodegradability of components of a whole fuel by a soil microbial consortium. Samples of quartz sand (Fischer Sea Sand) and illite clay (API 35) were spiked with marine diesel fuel, aged, slurried, and inoculated, and concentrations of fuel components were monitored over time. To help distinguish biotic from abiotic processes, identical samples were poisoned with mercuric chloride and were run in parallel. While there was a chromatographic and biomarker evidence of n-alkane biodegradation in the sand samples, illite samples showed no evidence of biogenic loss of aliphatic components. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, on the other hand, were lost equivalently on both minerals and in both cases were lost to a much greater extent than were total petroleum hydrocarbons (TPHs). These results suggest that under experimental conditions, illite inhibited the bioavailability of some TPH components to the soil microbial consortium.

  2. Colloids as Mobile Substrates for the Implantation and Integration of Differentiated Neurons into the Mammalian Brain

    PubMed Central

    Jgamadze, Dennis; Bergen, Jamie; Stone, Daniel; Jang, Jae-Hyung; Schaffer, David V.; Isacoff, Ehud Y.; Pautot, Sophie

    2012-01-01

    Neuronal degeneration and the deterioration of neuronal communication lie at the origin of many neuronal disorders, and there have been major efforts to develop cell replacement therapies for treating such diseases. One challenge, however, is that differentiated cells are challenging to transplant due to their sensitivity both to being uprooted from their cell culture growth support and to shear forces inherent in the implantation process. Here, we describe an approach to address these problems. We demonstrate that rat hippocampal neurons can be grown on colloidal particles or beads, matured and even transfected in vitro, and subsequently transplanted while adhered to the beads into the young adult rat hippocampus. The transplanted cells have a 76% cell survival rate one week post-surgery. At this time, most transplanted neurons have left their beads and elaborated long processes, similar to the host neurons. Additionally, the transplanted cells distribute uniformly across the host hippocampus. Expression of a fluorescent protein and the light-gated glutamate receptor in the transplanted neurons enabled them to be driven to fire by remote optical control. At 1-2 weeks after transplantation, calcium imaging of host brain slice shows that optical excitation of the transplanted neurons elicits activity in nearby host neurons, indicating the formation of functional transplant-host synaptic connections. After 6 months, the transplanted cell survival and overall cell distribution remained unchanged, suggesting that cells are functionally integrated. This approach, which could be extended to other cell classes such as neural stem cells and other regions of the brain, offers promising prospects for neuronal circuit repair via transplantation of in vitro differentiated, genetically engineered neurons. PMID:22295079

  3. Regeneration of Aplysia Bag Cell Neurons is Synergistically Enhanced by Substrate-Bound Hemolymph Proteins and Laminin

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hyland, Callen; Dufrense, Eric R.; Forscher, Paul

    2014-04-01

    We have investigated Aplysia hemolymph as a source of endogenous factors to promote regeneration of bag cell neurons. We describe a novel synergistic effect between substrate-bound hemolymph proteins and laminin. This combination increased outgrowth and branching relative to either laminin or hemolymph alone. Notably, the addition of hemolymph to laminin substrates accelerated growth cone migration rate over ten-fold. Our results indicate that the active factor is either a high molecular weight protein or protein complex and is not the respiratory protein hemocyanin. Substrate-bound factor(s) from central nervous system-conditioned media also had a synergistic effect with laminin, suggesting a possible cooperation between humoral proteins and nervous system extracellular matrix. Further molecular characterization of active factors and their cellular targets is warranted on account of the magnitude of the effects reported here and their potential relevance for nervous system repair.

  4. Effects of elevated magnesium and substrate on neuronal numbers and neurite outgrowth of neural stem/progenitor cells in vitro.

    PubMed

    Vennemeyer, John J; Hopkins, Tracy; Kuhlmann, Julia; Heineman, William R; Pixley, Sarah K

    2014-07-01

    Because a potential treatment for brain injuries could be elevating magnesium ions (Mg(2+)) intracerebrally, we characterized the effects of elevating external Mg(2+) in cultures of neonatal murine brain-derived neural stem/progenitor cells (NSCs). Using a crystal violet assay, which avoids interference of Mg(2+) in the assay, it was determined that substrate influenced Mg(2+) effects on cell numbers. On uncoated plastic, elevating Mg(2+) levels to between 2.5 and 10mM above basal increased NSC numbers, and at higher concentrations numbers decreased to control or lower levels. Similar biphasic curves were observed with different plating densities, treatment durations and length of time in culture. When cells were plated on laminin-coated plastic, NSC numbers were higher even in basal medium and no further effects were observed with Mg(2+). NSC differentiation into neurons was not altered by either substrate or Mg(2+) supplementation. Some parameters of neurite outgrowth were increased by elevated Mg(2+) when NSCs differentiated into neurons on uncoated plastic. Differentiation on laminin resulted in increased neurites even in basal medium and no further effects were seen when Mg(2+) was elevated. This system can now be used to study the multiple mechanisms by which Mg(2+) influences neuronal biology. PMID:24815060

  5. Monoaminergic substrates underlying cocaine-induced enhancement of somatosensory-evoked discharges in rat barrel field cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Waterhouse, B D; Gould, E M; Bekavac, I

    1996-11-01

    Previously, we have described a selective potentiating effect of systemically administered cocaine (0.25-1.0 mg/kg i.v.) on long-latency excitatory responses (E2) of rat "barrel field" cortical neurons to mystacial vibrissae stimulation. The rat trigeminal system receives both norepinephrine (NE) and serotonin (5-HT)-containing afferents, but only minimal input from dopaminergic sources. The goal of the present study was to determine which of these monoamine systems was responsible for the previously observed facilitating action of cocaine on E2 responses of barrel field cortical neurons. Two approaches were used: 1) evaluation of cocaine effects on cortical neuron responses to whisker stimulation in NE- or 5-HT-depleted animals and 2) assessment of the effects of selective monoamine uptake blockers on cortical neuron responses to whisker deflection. Extracellular recordings were obtained from spontaneously active neurons in the barrel field cortex of halothane-anesthetized rats. Spontaneous activity and cellular responses to mechanical displacement of a single whisker were monitored before and after systemic (i.v.) administration of either cocaine or one of the following selective uptake blockers, fluoxetine (5-HT), desipramine (NE) and GBR12909 (dopamine). Cocaine-induced increases in the E2 response were observed in N-(2-chloroethyl)-N-ethyl-2-bromobenzylamine (DSP4, noradrenergic neurotoxin)-treated animals, but were reduced or abolished in p-chlorophenylalanine-treated (5-HT depletion) rats. Fluoxetine and desipramine, but not GBR12909, produced cocaine-like potentiation of the E2 response to whisker stimulation. These results point to a 5-HT-dependent mechanism as the substrate underlying cocaine's facilitating effects on long-latency somatosensory cortical neuron responses to receptive field stimulation. PMID:8930160

  6. Honeybee retinal glial cells transform glucose and supply the neurons with metabolic substrate

    SciTech Connect

    Tsacopoulos, M.; Evequoz-Mercier, V.; Perrottet, P.; Buchner, E.

    1988-11-01

    The retina of the honeybee drone is a nervous tissue in which glial cells and photoreceptor cells (sensory neurons) constitute two distinct metabolic compartments. Retinal slices incubated with 2-deoxy(/sup 3/H)glucose convert this glucose analogue to 2-deoxy(/sup 3/H)glucose 6-phosphate, but this conversion is made only in the glial cells. Hence, glycolysis occurs only in glial cells. In contrast, the neurons consume O/sub 2/ and this consumption is sustained by the hydrolysis of glycogen, which is contained in large amounts in the glia. During photostimulation the increased oxidative metabolism of the neurons is sustained by a higher supply of carbohydrates from the glia. This clear case of metabolic interaction between neurons and glial cells supports Golgi's original hypothesis, proposed nearly 100 years ago, about the nutritive function of glial cells in the nervous system.

  7. Integrins establish dendrite-substrate relationships that promote dendritic self-avoidance and patterning in Drosophila sensory neurons

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Michelle E.; Shrestha, Brikha R.; Blazeski, Richard; Mason, Carol A.; Grueber, Wesley B.

    2012-01-01

    Summary Dendrites achieve characteristic spacing patterns during development to ensure appropriate coverage of territories. Mechanisms of dendrite positioning via repulsive dendrite-dendrite interactions are beginning to be elucidated, but the control, and importance, of dendrite positioning relative to their substrate is poorly understood. We found that dendritic branches of Drosophila dendritic arborization sensory neurons can be positioned either at the basal surface of epidermal cells, or enclosed within epidermal invaginations. We show that integrins control dendrite positioning on or within the epidermis in a cell autonomous manner by promoting dendritic retention on the basal surface. Loss of integrin function in neurons resulted in excessive self-crossing and dendrite maintenance defects, the former indicating a novel role for substrate interactions in self-avoidance. In contrast to a contact-mediated mechanism, we find that integrins prevent crossings that are non-contacting between dendrites in different three-dimensional positions, revealing a requirement for combined dendrite-dendrite and dendrite-substrate interactions in self-avoidance. PMID:22243748

  8. Hypothalamic AgRP-neurons control peripheral substrate utilization and nutrient partitioning

    PubMed Central

    Joly-Amado, Aurélie; Denis, Raphaël G P; Castel, Julien; Lacombe, Amélie; Cansell, Céline; Rouch, Claude; Kassis, Nadim; Dairou, Julien; Cani, Patrice D; Ventura-Clapier, Renée; Prola, Alexandre; Flamment, Melissa; Foufelle, Fabienne; Magnan, Christophe; Luquet, Serge

    2012-01-01

    Obesity-related diseases such as diabetes and dyslipidemia result from metabolic alterations including the defective conversion, storage and utilization of nutrients, but the central mechanisms that regulate this process of nutrient partitioning remain elusive. As positive regulators of feeding behaviour, agouti-related protein (AgRP) producing neurons are indispensible for the hypothalamic integration of energy balance. Here, we demonstrate a role for AgRP-neurons in the control of nutrient partitioning. We report that ablation of AgRP-neurons leads to a change in autonomic output onto liver, muscle and pancreas affecting the relative balance between lipids and carbohydrates metabolism. As a consequence, mice lacking AgRP-neurons become obese and hyperinsulinemic on regular chow but display reduced body weight gain and paradoxical improvement in glucose tolerance on high-fat diet. These results provide a direct demonstration of a role for AgRP-neurons in the coordination of efferent organ activity and nutrient partitioning, providing a mechanistic link between obesity and obesity-related disorders. PMID:22990237

  9. Substrates and pathway of electricity generation in a nitrification-based microbial fuel cell.

    PubMed

    Chen, Hui; Zheng, Ping; Zhang, Jiqiang; Xie, Zuofu; Ji, Junyuan; Ghulam, Abbas

    2014-06-01

    Nitrification-based microbial fuel cell (N-MFC) is a novel inorganic microbial fuel cell based on nitrification in the anode compartment. So far, little information is available on the substrates and pathway of N-MFC. The results of this study indicated that apart from the primary nitrification substrate (ammonium), the intermediates (hydroxylamine and nitrite) could also serve as anodic fuel to generate current, and the end product nitrate showed an inhibitory effect on electricity generation. Based on the research, a pathway of electricity generation was proposed for N-MFC: ammonium was oxidized first to nitrite by ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB), then the nitrite in anolyte and the potassium permanganate in catholyte constituted a chemical cell to generate current. In other words, the electricity generation in N-MFC was not only supported by microbial reaction as we expected, but both biological and electrochemical reactions contributed. PMID:24704886

  10. Neuronal Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptors: Common Molecular Substrates of Nicotine and Alcohol Dependence

    PubMed Central

    Hendrickson, Linzy M.; Guildford, Melissa J.; Tapper, Andrew R.

    2013-01-01

    Alcohol and nicotine are often co-abused. As many as 80–95% of alcoholics are also smokers, suggesting that ethanol and nicotine, the primary addictive component of tobacco smoke, may functionally interact in the central nervous system and/or share a common mechanism of action. While nicotine initiates dependence by binding to and activating neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs), ligand-gated cation channels normally activated by endogenous acetylcholine (ACh), ethanol is much less specific with the ability to modulate multiple gene products including those encoding voltage-gated ion channels, and excitatory/inhibitory neurotransmitter receptors. However, emerging data indicate that ethanol interacts with nAChRs, both directly and indirectly, in the mesocorticolimbic dopaminergic (DAergic) reward circuitry to affect brain reward systems. Like nicotine, ethanol activates DAergic neurons of the ventral tegmental area (VTA) which project to the nucleus accumbens (NAc). Blockade of VTA nAChRs reduces ethanol-mediated activation of DAergic neurons, NAc DA release, consumption, and operant responding for ethanol in rodents. Thus, ethanol may increase ACh release into the VTA driving activation of DAergic neurons through nAChRs. In addition, ethanol potentiates distinct nAChR subtype responses to ACh and nicotine in vitro and in DAergic neurons. The smoking cessation therapeutic and nAChR partial agonist, varenicline, reduces alcohol consumption in heavy drinking smokers and rodent models of alcohol consumption. Finally, single nucleotide polymorphisms in nAChR subunit genes are associated with alcohol dependence phenotypes and smoking behaviors in human populations. Together, results from pre-clinical, clinical, and genetic studies indicate that nAChRs may have an inherent role in the abusive properties of ethanol, as well as in nicotine and alcohol co-dependence. PMID:23641218

  11. Effect of Substrate Thickness on Oxide Scale Spallation for Solid Oxide Fuel Cells

    SciTech Connect

    Liu, Wenning N.; Sun, Xin; Stephens, Elizabeth V.; Khaleel, Mohammad A.

    2011-07-01

    In this paper, the effect of the ferritic substrate's thickness on the delamination/spallation of the oxide scale was investigated experimentally and numerically. At the high-temperature oxidation environment of solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs), a combination of growth stress with thermal stresses may lead to scale delamination/buckling and eventual spallation during SOFC stack cooling, even leading to serious degradation of cell performance. The growth stress is induced by the growth of the oxide scale on the scale/substrate interface, and thermal stress is induced by a mismatch of the coefficient of thermal expansion between the oxide scale and the substrate. The numerical results show that the interfacial shear stresses, which are the driving force of scale delamination between the oxide scale and the ferritic substrate, increase with the growth of the oxide scale and also with the thickness of the ferritic substrate; i.e., the thick ferritic substrate can easily lead to scale delamination and spallation. Experimental observation confirmed the predicted results of the delamination and spallation of the oxide scale on the ferritic substrate.

  12. Fracture toughness of solid oxide fuel cell anode substrates determined by a double-torsion technique

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pećanac, G.; Wei, J.; Malzbender, J.

    2016-09-01

    Planar solid oxide fuel cell anode substrates are exposed to high mechanical loads during assembly, start-up, steady-state operation and thermal cycling. Hence, characterization of mechanical stability of anode substrates under different oxidation states and at relevant temperatures is essential to warrant a reliable operation of solid oxide fuel cells. As a basis for mechanical assessment of brittle supports, two most common anode substrate material variants, NiO-3YSZ and NiO-8YSZ, were analyzed in this study with respect to their fracture toughness at room temperature and at a typical stack operation temperature of 800 °C. The study considered both, oxidized and reduced materials' states, where also an outlook is given on the behavior of the re-oxidized state that might be induced by malfunctions of sealants or other functional components. Aiming at the improvement of material's production, different types of warm pressed and tape cast NiO-8YSZ substrates were characterized in oxidized and reduced states. Overall, the results confirmed superior fracture toughness of 3YSZ compared to 8YSZ based composites in the oxidized state, whereas in the reduced state 3YSZ based composites showed similar fracture toughness at room temperature, but a higher value at 800 °C compared to 8YSZ based composites. Complementary microstructural analysis aided the interpretation of mechanical characterization.

  13. Characterization of spiral ganglion neurons cultured on silicon micro-pillar substrates for new auditory neuro-electronic interfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mattotti, M.; Micholt, L.; Braeken, D.; Kovačić, D.

    2015-04-01

    Objective. One of the strategies to improve cochlear implant technology is to increase the number of electrodes in the neuro-electronic interface. The objective was to characterize in vitro cultures of spiral ganglion neurons (SGN) cultured on surfaces of novel silicon micro-pillar substrates (MPS). Approach. SGN from P5 rat pups were cultured on MPS with different micro-pillar widths (1-5.6 μm) and spacings (0.6-15 μm) and were compared with control SGN cultures on glass coverslips by immunocytochemistry and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Main results. Overall, MPS support SGN growth equally well as the control glass surfaces. Micro-pillars of a particular size-range (1.2-2.4 μm) were optimal in promoting SGN presence, neurite growth and alignment. On this specific micro-pillar size, more SGN were present, and neurites were longer and more aligned. SEM pictures highlight how cells on micro-pillars with smaller spacings grow directly on top of pillars, while at wider spacings (from 3.2 to 15 μm) they grow on the bottom of the surface, losing contact guidance. Further, we found that MPS encourage more monopolar and bipolar SGN morphologies compared to the control condition. Finally, MPS induce longest neurite growth with minimal interaction of S100+ glial cells. Significance. These results indicate that silicon micro-pillar substrates create a permissive environment for the growth of primary auditory neurons promoting neurite sprouting and are a promising technology for future high-density three-dimensional CMOS-based auditory neuro-electronic interfaces.

  14. Monosynaptic convergence of somatic and visceral C-fiber afferents on projection and local circuit neurons in lamina I: a substrate for referred pain

    PubMed Central

    Luz, Liliana L.; Fernandes, Elisabete C.; Sivado, Miklos; Kokai, Eva; Szucs, Peter; Safronov, Boris V.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Referred pain is a phenomenon of feeling pain at a site other than the site of the painful stimulus origin. It arises from a pathological mixing of nociceptive processing pathways for visceral and somatic inputs. Despite numerous studies based on unit recordings from spinal and supraspinal neurons, the exact mechanism and site of this mixing within the central nervous system are not known. Here, we selectively recorded from lamina I neurons, using a visually guided patch-clamp technique, in thoracic spinal cord preparation with preserved intercostal (somatic) and splanchnic (visceral) nerves. We show that somatic and visceral C fibers converge monosynaptically onto a group of lamina I neurons, which includes both projection and local circuit neurons. Other groups of lamina I neurons received inputs from either somatic or visceral afferents. We have also identified a population of lamina I local circuit neurons showing overall inhibitory responses upon stimulation of both nerves. Thus, the present data allow us to draw two major conclusions. First, lamina I of the spinal cord is the first site in the central nervous system where somatic and visceral pathways directly converge onto individual projection and local circuit neurons. Second, the mechanism of somatovisceral convergence is complex and based on functional integration of monosynaptic and polysynaptic excitatory as well as inhibitory inputs in specific groups of neurons. This complex pattern of convergence provides a substrate for alterations in the balance between visceral and somatic inputs causing referred pain. PMID:26098437

  15. Phylogenetic and metagenomic analyses of substrate-dependent bacterial temporal dynamics in microbial fuel cells.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Husen; Chen, Xi; Braithwaite, Daniel; He, Zhen

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the microbial community structure and genetic potential of anode biofilms is key to improve extracellular electron transfers in microbial fuel cells. We investigated effect of substrate and temporal dynamics of anodic biofilm communities using phylogenetic and metagenomic approaches in parallel with electrochemical characterizations. The startup non-steady state anodic bacterial structures were compared for a simple substrate, acetate, and for a complex substrate, landfill leachate, using a single-chamber air-cathode microbial fuel cell. Principal coordinate analysis showed that distinct community structures were formed with each substrate type. The bacterial diversity measured as Shannon index decreased with time in acetate cycles, and was restored with the introduction of leachate. The change of diversity was accompanied by an opposite trend in the relative abundance of Geobacter-affiliated phylotypes, which were acclimated to over 40% of total Bacteria at the end of acetate-fed conditions then declined in the leachate cycles. The transition from acetate to leachate caused a decrease in output power density from 243±13 mW/m2 to 140±11 mW/m2, accompanied by a decrease in Coulombic electron recovery from 18±3% to 9±3%. The leachate cycles selected protein-degrading phylotypes within phylum Synergistetes. Metagenomic shotgun sequencing showed that leachate-fed communities had higher cell motility genes including bacterial chemotaxis and flagellar assembly, and increased gene abundance related to metal resistance, antibiotic resistance, and quorum sensing. These differentially represented genes suggested an altered anodic biofilm community in response to additional substrates and stress from the complex landfill leachate. PMID:25202990

  16. Largely overlapping neuronal substrates of reactivity to drug, gambling, food and sexual cues: A comprehensive meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Noori, Hamid R; Cosa Linan, Alejandro; Spanagel, Rainer

    2016-09-01

    Cue reactivity to natural and social rewards is essential for motivational behavior. However, cue reactivity to drug rewards can also elicit craving in addicted subjects. The degree to which drug and natural rewards share neural substrates is not known. The objective of this study is to conduct a comprehensive meta-analysis of neuroimaging studies on drug, gambling and natural stimuli (food and sex) to identify the common and distinct neural substrates of cue reactivity to drug and natural rewards. Neural cue reactivity studies were selected for the meta-analysis by means of activation likelihood estimations, followed by sensitivity and clustering analyses of averaged neuronal response patterns. Data from 176 studies (5573 individuals) suggests largely overlapping neural response patterns towards all tested reward modalities. Common cue reactivity to natural and drug rewards was expressed by bilateral neural responses within anterior cingulate gyrus, insula, caudate head, inferior frontal gyrus, middle frontal gyrus and cerebellum. However, drug cues also generated distinct activation patterns in medial frontal gyrus, middle temporal gyrus, posterior cingulate gyrus, caudate body and putamen. Natural (sexual) reward cues induced unique activation of the pulvinar in thalamus. Neural substrates of cue reactivity to alcohol, drugs of abuse, food, sex and gambling are largely overlapping and comprise a network that processes reward, emotional responses and habit formation. This suggests that cue-mediated craving involves mechanisms that are not exclusive for addictive disorders but rather resemble the intersection of information pathways for processing reward, emotional responses, non-declarative memory and obsessive-compulsive behavior. PMID:27397863

  17. Substrate arrays of iridium oxide microelectrodes for in vitro neuronal interfacing.

    PubMed

    Gawad, Shady; Giugliano, Michele; Heuschkel, Marc; Wessling, Börge; Markram, Henry; Schnakenberg, Uwe; Renaud, Philippe; Morgan, Hywel

    2009-01-01

    The design of novel bidirectional interfaces for in vivo and in vitro nervous systems is an important step towards future functional neuroprosthetics. Small electrodes, structures and devices are necessary to achieve high-resolution and target-selectivity during stimulation and recording of neuronal networks, while significant charge transfer and large signal-to-noise ratio are required for accurate time resolution. In addition, the physical properties of the interface should remain stable across time, especially when chronic in vivo applications or in vitro long-term studies are considered, unless a procedure to actively compensate for degradation is provided. In this short report, we describe the use and fabrication of arrays of 120 planar microelectrodes (MEAs) of sputtered Iridium Oxide (IrOx). The effective surface area of individual microelectrodes is significantly increased using electrochemical activation, a procedure that may also be employed to restore the properties of the electrodes as required. The electrode activation results in a very low interface impedance, especially in the lower frequency domain, which was characterized by impedance spectroscopy. The increase in the roughness of the microelectrodes surface was imaged using digital holographic microscopy and electron microscopy. Aging of the activated electrodes was also investigated, comparing storage in saline with storage in air. Demonstration of concept was achieved by recording multiple single-unit spike activity in acute brain slice preparations of rat neocortex. Data suggests that extracellular recording of action potentials can be achieved with planar IrOx MEAs with good signal-to-noise ratios. PMID:19194527

  18. Neuronal substrate and effective connectivity of abnormal movement sequencing in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Zemankova, Petra; Lungu, Ovidiu; Huttlova, Jitka; Kerkovsky, Milos; Zubor, Jozef; Lipova, Petra; Bares, Martin; Kasparek, Tomas

    2016-06-01

    Movement sequencing difficulties are part of the neurological soft signs (NSS), they have high clinical value because they are not always present in schizophrenia. We investigated the neuronal correlates of movement sequencing in 24 healthy controls and 24 schizophrenia patients, with (SZP SQ+) or without (SZP SQ-) sequencing difficulties. We characterized simultaneous and lagged functional connectivity between brain regions involved in movement sequencing using psychophysiological interaction (PPI) and the Granger causality modeling (GCM), respectively. Left premotor cortex (PMC) and superior parietal lobule (SPL) were specifically activated during sequential movements in all participants. Right PMC and precuneus, ipsilateral to the hand executing the task, activated during sequential movements only in healthy controls and SZP SQ-. SZP SQ+ showed hyperactivation in contralateral PMC, as compared to the other groups. PPI analysis revealed a deficit in inhibitory connections within this fronto-parietal network in SZP SQ+ during sequential task. GCM showed a significant lagged effective connectivity from right PMC to left SPL during task and rest periods in all groups and from right PMC to right precuneus in SZP SQ+ group only. Both SZP groups had a significant lagged connectivity from right to left PMC, during sequential task. Our results indicate that aberrant fronto-parietal network connectivity with cortical inhibition deficit and abnormal reliance on previous network activity are related to movement sequencing in SZP. The overactivation of motor cortex seems to be a good compensating strategy, the hyperactivation of parietal cortex is linked to motor deficit symptoms. PMID:26780603

  19. Influence of substrate on electricity generation of Shewanella loihica PV-4 in microbial fuel cells

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The substrate, serving as carbon and energy source, is one of the major factors affecting the performance of microbial fuel cells (MFCs). We utilized BIOLOG system to rapidly screen substrates for electricigens, and further evaluated influence of these substrates on electricity generation of Shewanella loihica PV-4 in MFCs. Results Three of most favorable substrates (lactate acid, formic acid and cyclodextrin) with OD590/750 of 0.952, 0.880 and 0.849 as well as three of most unfavorable substrates (galactose, arabinose and glucose) with OD590/750 of 0.248, 0.137 and 0.119 were selected by BIOLOG system under aerobic conditions. The chronoamperometry results showed that MFCs fed with these substrates exhibited different current behaviors. Cyclic voltammograms results showed that arabinose, galactose and glucose promoted electron transfer from outer membrane c-Cyts of cells to the electrode surface. Lactic acid, formic acid and cyclodextrin produced lower quantity of electric charge of 10.13 C, 9.83 C and 10.10 C, the corresponding OD600 value was 0.180, 0.286 and 0.152 in BES; while galactose, arabinose and glucose generated higher quantity of electric charge of 12.34 C, 13.42 C and 17.45 C, and increased OD600 values were 0.338, 0.558 and 0.409 in BES. SEMs results showed that plenty of plump and stretched cells as well as appendages were observed when lactic acid, formic acid, and cyclodextrin were utilized as substrates, while sparse cells in short shape were obtained when galactose, arabinose and glucose were used as substrates. Conclusions These results suggest that substrate not only has important role in electrochemical performances of MFCs but also in biological properties of electricigens. Lactic acid, formic acid, and cyclodextrin beneficial for cell growth under aerobic conditions are unfavourable for planktonic cell growth and current generation under anaerobic conditions, while consumptions of galactose, arabinose and glucose adverse to cell

  20. Influence of substrate concentration and feed frequency on ammonia inhibition in microbial fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tice, Ryan C.; Kim, Younggy

    2014-12-01

    Excessive amounts of ammonia are known to inhibit exoelectrogenic activities in microbial fuel cells (MFCs). However, the threshold ammonia concentration that triggers toxic effects is not consistent among literature papers, indicating that ammonia inhibition can be affected by other operational factors. Here, we examined the effect of substrate concentration and feed frequency on the capacity of exoelectrogenic bacteria to resist against ammonia inhibition. The high substrate condition (2 g L-1 sodium acetate, 2-day feed) maintained high electricity generation (between 1.1 and 1.9 W m-2) for total ammonia concentration up to 4000 mg-N L-1. The less frequent feed condition (2 g L-1 sodium acetate, 6-day feed) and the low substrate condition (0.67 g L-1 sodium acetate, 2-day feed) resulted in substantial decreases in electricity generation at total ammonia concentration of 2500 and 3000 mg-N L-1, respectively. It was determined that the power density curve serves as a better indicator than continuously monitored electric current for predicting ammonia inhibition in MFCs. The chemical oxygen demand (COD) removal gradually decreased at high ammonia concentration even without ammonia inhibition in electricity generation. The experimental results demonstrated that high substrate concentration and frequent feed substantially enhance the capacity of exoelectrogenic bacteria to resist against ammonia inhibition.

  1. Carbon Nanofibers Modified Graphite Felt for High Performance Anode in High Substrate Concentration Microbial Fuel Cells

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Youliang; Zhou, Yan; Chen, Shuiliang; Yang, Fangfang; Zheng, Suqi; Hou, Haoqing

    2014-01-01

    Carbon nanofibers modified graphite fibers (CNFs/GF) composite electrode was prepared for anode in high substrate concentration microbial fuel cells. Electrochemical tests showed that the CNFs/GF anode generated a peak current density of 2.42 mA cm−2 at a low acetate concentration of 20 mM, which was 54% higher than that from bare GF. Increase of the acetate concentration to 80 mM, in which the peak current density of the CNFs/GF anode greatly increased and was up to 3.57 mA cm−2, was seven times as that of GF anode. Morphology characterization revealed that the biofilms in the CNFs/GF anode were much denser than those in the bare GF. This result revealed that the nanostructure in the anode not only enhanced current generation but also could tolerate high substrate concentration. PMID:24883348

  2. Evaluation of normalized energy recovery (NER) in microbial fuel cells affected by reactor dimensions and substrates.

    PubMed

    Xiao, Li; Ge, Zheng; Kelly, Patrick; Zhang, Fei; He, Zhen

    2014-04-01

    The objective of this study is to provide an initial evaluation of normalized energy recovery (NER - a new parameter for presenting energy performance) in microbial fuel cells (MFCs) through investigation of the effects of reactor dimensions and anode substrates. Although the larger-size MFCs generally have lower maximum power densities, their maximum NER is comparable to that of the smaller MFCs at the same anolyte flow rate. The mixed messages obtained from the MFC size tests suggest that MFCs can be further scaled up without decreasing energy recovery under certain conditions. The low-strength substrates seem to be more suitable for MFC treatment of wastewater, in terms of both energy recovery and organic removal. However, because the MFCs could not achieve the maximum NER and the maximum organic removal efficiency at the same time, one must determine a major goal for MFCs treating wastewater between energy recovery and contaminant removal. PMID:24534787

  3. Neuronal Substrates Underlying Performance Variability in Well-Trained Skillful Motor Task in Humans

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Motor performance fluctuates trial by trial even in a well-trained motor skill. Here we show neural substrates underlying such behavioral fluctuation in humans. We first scanned brain activity with functional magnetic resonance imaging while healthy participants repeatedly performed a 10 s skillful sequential finger-tapping task. Before starting the experiment, the participants had completed intensive training. We evaluated task performance per trial (number of correct sequences in 10 s) and depicted brain regions where the activity changes in association with the fluctuation of the task performance across trials. We found that the activity in a broader range of frontoparietocerebellar network, including the bilateral dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), anterior cingulate and anterior insular cortices, and left cerebellar hemisphere, was negatively correlated with the task performance. We further showed in another transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) experiment that task performance deteriorated, when we applied anodal tDCS to the right DLPFC. These results indicate that fluctuation of brain activity in the nonmotor frontoparietocerebellar network may underlie trial-by-trial performance variability even in a well-trained motor skill, and its neuromodulation with tDCS may affect the task performance. PMID:27516909

  4. Quantitative characterization of crude oils and fuels in mineral substrates using reflectance spectroscopy: Implications for remote sensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scafutto, Rebecca Del'Papa Moreira; Souza Filho, Carlos Roberto de

    2016-08-01

    The near and shortwave infrared spectral reflectance properties of several mineral substrates impregnated with crude oils (°APIs 19.2, 27.5 and 43.2), diesel, gasoline and ethanol were measured and assembled in a spectral library. These data were examined using Principal Component Analysis (PCA) and Partial Least Squares (PLS) Regression. Unique and characteristic absorption features were identified in the mixtures, besides variations of the spectral signatures related to the compositional difference of the crude oils and fuels. These features were used for qualitative and quantitative determination of the contaminant impregnated in the substrates. Specific wavelengths, where key absorption bands occur, were used for the individual characterization of oils and fuels. The intensity of these features can be correlated to the abundance of the contaminant in the mixtures. Grain size and composition of the impregnated substrate directly influence the variation of the spectral signatures. PCA models applied to the spectral library proved able to differentiate the type and density of the hydrocarbons. The calibration models generated by PLS are robust, of high quality and can also be used to predict the concentration of oils and fuels in mixtures with mineral substrates. Such data and models are employable as a reference for classifying unknown samples of contaminated substrates. The results of this study have important implications for onshore exploration and environmental monitoring of oil and fuels leaks using proximal and far range multispectral, hyperspectral and ultraespectral remote sensing.

  5. Designing Photoelectrodes for Photocatalytic Fuel Cells and Elucidating the Effects of Organic Substrates.

    PubMed

    Hu, Chenyan; Kelm, Denis; Schreiner, Manuel; Wollborn, Tobias; Mädler, Lutz; Teoh, Wey Yang

    2015-12-01

    Photocatalytic fuel cells (PFCs) are constructed from anodized photoanodes with the aim of effectively converting organic materials into solar electricity. The syntheses of the photoanodes (TiO2 , WO3 , and Nb2 O5 ) were optimized using the statistical 2(k) factorial design. A systematic study was carried out to catalog the influence of eleven types of organic substrate on the photocurrent responses of the photoanodes, showing dependence on the adsorption of the organic substrates and on the associated photocatalytic degradation mechanisms. Strong adsorbates, such as carboxylic acids, generated high photocurrent enhancements. Simple and short-chained molecules, such as formic acid and methanol, are the most efficient in the corresponding carboxylic acid and alcohol groups as a result of their fast degradation kinetics. The TiO2 -based PFC yielded the highest photocurrent and obtainable power, whereas the Nb2 O5 -based PFC achieved the highest open-circuit voltage, which is consistent with its most negative Fermi level. PMID:26564312

  6. Impaired Neurite Contact Guidance in Ubiquitin Ligase E3a (Ube3a)-Deficient Hippocampal Neurons on Nanostructured Substrates.

    PubMed

    Tonazzini, I; Meucci, S; Van Woerden, G M; Elgersma, Y; Cecchini, M

    2016-04-01

    Recent discoveries indicate that during neuronal development the signaling processes that regulate extracellular sensing (e.g., adhesion, cytoskeletal dynamics) are important targets for ubiquitination-dependent regulation, in particular through E3 ubiquitin ligases. Among these, Ubiquitin E3a ligase (UBE3A) has a key role in brain functioning, but its function and how its deficiency results in the neurodevelopmental disorder Angelman syndrome is still unclear. Here, the role of UBE3A is investigated in neurite contact guidance during neuronal development, in vitro. The microtopography sensing of wild-type and Ube3a-deficient hippocampal neurons is studied by exploiting gratings with different topographical characteristics, with the aim to compare their capabilities to read and follow physical directional stimuli. It is shown that neuronal contact guidance is defective in Ube3a-deficient neurons, and this behavior is linked to an impaired activation of the focal adhesion signaling pathway. Taken together, the results suggest that the neuronal contact sensing machinery might be affected in Angelman syndrome. PMID:26845073

  7. Fuel availability and fate in cardiac metabolism: A tale of two substrates.

    PubMed

    Pascual, Florencia; Coleman, Rosalind A

    2016-10-01

    The heart's extraordinary metabolic flexibility allows it to adapt to normal changes in physiology in order to preserve its function. Alterations in the metabolic profile of the heart have also been attributed to pathological conditions such as ischemia and hypertrophy; however, research during the past decade has established that cardiac metabolic adaptations can precede the onset of pathologies. It is therefore critical to understand how changes in cardiac substrate availability and use trigger events that ultimately result in heart dysfunction. This review examines the mechanisms by which the heart obtains fuels from the circulation or from mobilization of intracellular stores. We next describe experimental models that exhibit either an increase in glucose use or a decrease in FA oxidation, and how these aberrant conditions affect cardiac metabolism and function. Finally, we highlight the importance of alternative, relatively under-investigated strategies for the treatment of heart failure. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Heart Lipid Metabolism edited by G.D. Lopaschuk. PMID:26993579

  8. Epidermis-Derived Semaphorin Promotes Dendrite Self-Avoidance by Regulating Dendrite-Substrate Adhesion in Drosophila Sensory Neurons.

    PubMed

    Meltzer, Shan; Yadav, Smita; Lee, Jiae; Soba, Peter; Younger, Susan H; Jin, Peng; Zhang, Wei; Parrish, Jay; Jan, Lily Yeh; Jan, Yuh-Nung

    2016-02-17

    Precise patterning of dendritic arbors is critical for the wiring and function of neural circuits. Dendrite-extracellular matrix (ECM) adhesion ensures that the dendrites of Drosophila dendritic arborization (da) sensory neurons are properly restricted in a 2D space, and thereby facilitates contact-mediated dendritic self-avoidance and tiling. However, the mechanisms regulating dendrite-ECM adhesion in vivo are poorly understood. Here, we show that mutations in the semaphorin ligand sema-2b lead to a dramatic increase in self-crossing of dendrites due to defects in dendrite-ECM adhesion, resulting in a failure to confine dendrites to a 2D plane. Furthermore, we find that Sema-2b is secreted from the epidermis and signals through the Plexin B receptor in neighboring neurons. Importantly, we find that Sema-2b/PlexB genetically and physically interacts with TORC2 complex, Tricornered (Trc) kinase, and integrins. These results reveal a novel role for semaphorins in dendrite patterning and illustrate how epidermal-derived cues regulate neural circuit assembly. PMID:26853303

  9. β-Hydroxybutyrate is the preferred substrate for GABA and glutamate synthesis while glucose is indispensable during depolarization in cultured GABAergic neurons.

    PubMed

    Lund, Trine M; Obel, Linea F; Risa, Øystein; Sonnewald, Ursula

    2011-08-01

    The ketogenic diet has multiple beneficial effects not only in treatment of epilepsy, but also in that of glucose transporter 1 deficiency, cancer, Parkinson's disease, obesity and pain. Thus, there is an increasing interest in understanding the mechanism behind this metabolic therapy. Patients on a ketogenic diet reach high plasma levels of ketone bodies, which are used by the brain as energy substrates. The interaction between glucose and ketone bodies is complex and there is still controversy as to what extent it affects the homeostasis of the neurotransmitters glutamate, aspartate and GABA. The present study was conducted to study this metabolic interaction in cultured GABAergic neurons exposed to different combinations of (13)C-labeled and unlabeled glucose and β-hydroxybutyrate. Depolarization was induced and the incorporation of (13)C into glutamate, GABA and aspartate was analyzed. The presence of β-hydroxybutyrate together with glucose did not affect the total GABA content but did, however, decrease the aspartate content to a lower value than when either glucose or β-hydroxybutyrate was employed alone. When combinations of the two substrates were used (13)C-atoms from β-hydroxybutyrate were found in all three amino acids to a greater extent than (13)C-atoms from glucose, but only the (13)C contribution from [1,6-(13)C]glucose increased upon depolarization. In conclusion, β-hydroxybutyrate was preferred over glucose as substrate for amino acid synthesis but the total content of aspartate decreased when both substrates were present. Furthermore only the use of glucose increased upon depolarization. PMID:21684314

  10. Role of an isoform-specific substrate access channel residue in CO ligand accessibilities of neuronal and inducible nitric oxide synthase isoforms.

    PubMed

    Feng, Changjian; Fan, Weihong; Ghosh, Dipak K; Tollin, Gordon

    2011-03-01

    The rates of the bimolecular CO rebinding to the oxygenase domains of inducible and neuronal NOS proteins (iNOSoxy and nNOSoxy, respectively) after photolytic dissociation have been determined by laser flash photolysis. The following mutants at the isoform-specific sites (murine iNOSoxy N115L and rat nNOSoxy L337N, L337F) have been constructed to investigate role of the residues in the CO ligand accessibilities of the NOS isoforms. These residues are in the NOS distal substrate access channel. The effect of the (6R)-5,6,7,8-tetrahydrobiopterin (H(4)B) cofactor and l-arginine (Arg) substrate on the rates of CO rebinding have also been assessed. Addition of l-Arg to the iNOSoxy N115L mutant results in much faster CO rebinding rates, compared to the wild type. The results indicate that modifications to the iNOS channel in which the hydrophilic residue N115 is replaced by leucine (to resemble its nNOS cognate) open the channel somewhat, thereby improving access to the axial heme ligand binding position. On the other hand, introduction of a hydrophilic residue (L337N) or a bulky rigid aromatic residue (L337F) in the nNOS isoform does not significantly affect the kinetics profile, suggesting that the geometry of the substrate access pocket is not greatly altered. The bimolecular CO rebinding rate data indicate that the opening of the substrate access channel in the iNOS N115L mutant may be due to more widespread structural alterations induced by the mutation. PMID:21146639

  11. Power densities and microbial communities of brewery wastewater-fed microbial fuel cells according to the initial substrates.

    PubMed

    Yu, Jaecheul; Park, Younghyun; Kim, Byunggoon; Lee, Taeho

    2015-01-01

    Single-chamber microbial fuel cells (MFCs) acclimated with glucose, butyrate, propionate, acetate, and a mixture of the four were operated with brewery wastewater (BWW) under a fed-batch mode. Glucose-fed MFC (GW-MFC) showed the highest maximum power density (PDmax) of 1,519 mW/m(2), followed in order by acetate-fed MFC (AW-MFC), mixed substrates-fed MFC (MW-MFC), butyrate-fed MFC (BW-MFC), and propionate-fed MFC (PW-MFC). After changing to BWW, power production was decreased for all MFCs. MFC acclimated with glucose showed the highest PDmax of 890 ± 12 mW/m(2), followed in order by MW-MFC, AW-MFC, BW-MFC, and PW-MFC. The PDmax in BWW-MFC, which was acclimated and operated with BWW, of 552 mW/m(2) was less than that of GW-MFC and MW-MFC but more than that of AW-MFC, BW-MFC, and PW-MFC. MFCs with fermentable substrates were less affected by the BWW. Gammaproteobacteria, including Pseudomonas sp., Acinetobacter sp. and Xanthomonas axonopodis, were found in all MFCs with pure substrates and Rubrivivax benzoatilyticus, thiobacillus sp. and Denitratisoma oestradiolicum belonging to Betaproteobacteria were newly detected in all MFCs when the substrate was changed to BWW. PMID:24973903

  12. QSpike tools: a generic framework for parallel batch preprocessing of extracellular neuronal signals recorded by substrate microelectrode arrays

    PubMed Central

    Mahmud, Mufti; Pulizzi, Rocco; Vasilaki, Eleni; Giugliano, Michele

    2014-01-01

    Micro-Electrode Arrays (MEAs) have emerged as a mature technique to investigate brain (dys)functions in vivo and in in vitro animal models. Often referred to as “smart” Petri dishes, MEAs have demonstrated a great potential particularly for medium-throughput studies in vitro, both in academic and pharmaceutical industrial contexts. Enabling rapid comparison of ionic/pharmacological/genetic manipulations with control conditions, MEAs are employed to screen compounds by monitoring non-invasively the spontaneous and evoked neuronal electrical activity in longitudinal studies, with relatively inexpensive equipment. However, in order to acquire sufficient statistical significance, recordings last up to tens of minutes and generate large amount of raw data (e.g., 60 channels/MEA, 16 bits A/D conversion, 20 kHz sampling rate: approximately 8 GB/MEA,h uncompressed). Thus, when the experimental conditions to be tested are numerous, the availability of fast, standardized, and automated signal preprocessing becomes pivotal for any subsequent analysis and data archiving. To this aim, we developed an in-house cloud-computing system, named QSpike Tools, where CPU-intensive operations, required for preprocessing of each recorded channel (e.g., filtering, multi-unit activity detection, spike-sorting, etc.), are decomposed and batch-queued to a multi-core architecture or to a computers cluster. With the commercial availability of new and inexpensive high-density MEAs, we believe that disseminating QSpike Tools might facilitate its wide adoption and customization, and inspire the creation of community-supported cloud-computing facilities for MEAs users. PMID:24678297

  13. QSpike tools: a generic framework for parallel batch preprocessing of extracellular neuronal signals recorded by substrate microelectrode arrays.

    PubMed

    Mahmud, Mufti; Pulizzi, Rocco; Vasilaki, Eleni; Giugliano, Michele

    2014-01-01

    Micro-Electrode Arrays (MEAs) have emerged as a mature technique to investigate brain (dys)functions in vivo and in in vitro animal models. Often referred to as "smart" Petri dishes, MEAs have demonstrated a great potential particularly for medium-throughput studies in vitro, both in academic and pharmaceutical industrial contexts. Enabling rapid comparison of ionic/pharmacological/genetic manipulations with control conditions, MEAs are employed to screen compounds by monitoring non-invasively the spontaneous and evoked neuronal electrical activity in longitudinal studies, with relatively inexpensive equipment. However, in order to acquire sufficient statistical significance, recordings last up to tens of minutes and generate large amount of raw data (e.g., 60 channels/MEA, 16 bits A/D conversion, 20 kHz sampling rate: approximately 8 GB/MEA,h uncompressed). Thus, when the experimental conditions to be tested are numerous, the availability of fast, standardized, and automated signal preprocessing becomes pivotal for any subsequent analysis and data archiving. To this aim, we developed an in-house cloud-computing system, named QSpike Tools, where CPU-intensive operations, required for preprocessing of each recorded channel (e.g., filtering, multi-unit activity detection, spike-sorting, etc.), are decomposed and batch-queued to a multi-core architecture or to a computers cluster. With the commercial availability of new and inexpensive high-density MEAs, we believe that disseminating QSpike Tools might facilitate its wide adoption and customization, and inspire the creation of community-supported cloud-computing facilities for MEAs users. PMID:24678297

  14. Atomic layer deposition of ultrathin blocking layer for low-temperature solid oxide fuel cell on nanoporous substrate

    SciTech Connect

    Yu, Wonjong; Cho, Gu Young; Noh, Seungtak; Tanveer, Waqas Hassan; Cha, Suk Won; Ji, Sanghoon; An, Jihwan

    2015-01-15

    An ultrathin yttria-stabilized zirconia (YSZ) blocking layer deposited by atomic layer deposition (ALD) was utilized for improving the performance and reliability of low-temperature solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) supported by an anodic aluminum oxide substrate. Physical vapor-deposited YSZ and gadolinia-doped ceria (GDC) electrolyte layers were deposited by a sputtering method. The ultrathin ALD YSZ blocking layer was inserted between the YSZ and GDC sputtered layers. To investigate the effects of an inserted ultrathin ALD blocking layer, SOFCs with and without an ultrathin ALD blocking layer were electrochemically characterized. The open circuit voltage (1.14 V) of the ALD blocking-layered SOFC was visibly higher than that (1.05 V) of the other cell. Furthermore, the ALD blocking layer augmented the power density and improved the reproducibility.

  15. Surface engineering of nanoporous substrate for solid oxide fuel cells with atomic layer-deposited electrolyte

    PubMed Central

    Ji, Sanghoon; Tanveer, Waqas Hassan; Yu, Wonjong; Kang, Sungmin; Cho, Gu Young; Kim, Sung Han

    2015-01-01

    Summary Solid oxide fuel cells with atomic layer-deposited thin film electrolytes supported on anodic aluminum oxide (AAO) are electrochemically characterized with varying thickness of bottom electrode catalyst (BEC); BECs which are 0.5 and 4 times thicker than the size of AAO pores are tested. The thicker BEC ensures far more active mass transport on the BEC side and resultantly the thicker BEC cell generates ≈11 times higher peak power density than the thinner BEC cell at 500 °C. PMID:26425432

  16. Surface engineering of nanoporous substrate for solid oxide fuel cells with atomic layer-deposited electrolyte.

    PubMed

    Ji, Sanghoon; Tanveer, Waqas Hassan; Yu, Wonjong; Kang, Sungmin; Cho, Gu Young; Kim, Sung Han; An, Jihwan; Cha, Suk Won

    2015-01-01

    Solid oxide fuel cells with atomic layer-deposited thin film electrolytes supported on anodic aluminum oxide (AAO) are electrochemically characterized with varying thickness of bottom electrode catalyst (BEC); BECs which are 0.5 and 4 times thicker than the size of AAO pores are tested. The thicker BEC ensures far more active mass transport on the BEC side and resultantly the thicker BEC cell generates ≈11 times higher peak power density than the thinner BEC cell at 500 °C. PMID:26425432

  17. Regulation of Blood Pressure, Appetite, and Glucose by Leptin After Inactivation of Insulin Receptor Substrate 2 Signaling in the Entire Brain or in Proopiomelanocortin Neurons.

    PubMed

    do Carmo, Jussara M; da Silva, Alexandre A; Wang, Zhen; Freeman, Nathan J; Alsheik, Ammar J; Adi, Ahmad; Hall, John E

    2016-02-01

    Insulin receptor substrate 2 (IRS2) is one of the 3 major leptin receptor signaling pathways, but its role in mediating the chronic effects of leptin on blood pressure, food intake, and glucose regulation is unclear. We tested whether genetic inactivation of IRS2 in the entire brain (IRS2/Nestin-cre mice) or specifically in proopiomelanocortin (POMC) neurons (IRS2/POMC-cre mice) attenuates the chronic cardiovascular, metabolic, and antidiabetic effects of leptin. Mice were instrumented with telemetry probes for measurement of blood pressure and heart rate and with venous catheters for intravenous infusions. After a 5-day control period, mice received leptin infusion (2 μg/kg per minute) for 7 days. Compared with control IRS2(flox/flox) mice, IRS2/POMC-cre mice had similar body weight and food intake (33±1 versus 35±1 g and 3.6±0.5 versus 3.8±0.2 g per day) but higher mean arterial pressure (MAP) and heart rate (110±2 versus 102±2 mm Hg and 641±9 versus 616±5 bpm). IRS2/Nestin-cre mice were heavier (38±2 g), slightly hyperphagic (4.5±1.0 g per day), and had higher MAP and heart rate (108±2 mm Hg and 659±9 bpm) compared with control mice. Leptin infusion gradually increased MAP despite decreasing food intake by 31% in IRS2(flox/flox) and in Nestin-cre control mice. In contrast, leptin infusion did not change MAP in IRS2/Nestin-cre or IRS2/POMC-cre mice. The anorexic and antidiabetic effects of leptin, however, were similar in all 3 groups. These results indicate that IRS2 signaling in the central nervous system, and particularly in POMC neurons, is essential for the chronic actions of leptin to raise MAP but not for its anorexic or antidiabetic effects. PMID:26628674

  18. Metabolism Regulates the Spontaneous Firing of Substantia Nigra Pars Reticulata Neurons via KATP and Nonselective Cation Channels

    PubMed Central

    Lutas, Andrew; Birnbaumer, Lutz

    2014-01-01

    Neurons use glucose to fuel glycolysis and provide substrates for mitochondrial respiration, but neurons can also use alternative fuels that bypass glycolysis and feed directly into mitochondria. To determine whether neuronal pacemaking depends on active glucose metabolism, we switched the metabolic fuel from glucose to alternative fuels, lactate or β-hydroxybutyrate, while monitoring the spontaneous firing of GABAergic neurons in mouse substantia nigra pars reticulata (SNr) brain slices. We found that alternative fuels, in the absence of glucose, sustained SNr spontaneous firing at basal rates, but glycolysis may still be supported by glycogen in the absence of glucose. To prevent any glycogen-fueled glycolysis, we directly inhibited glycolysis using either 2-deoxyglucose or iodoacetic acid. Inhibiting glycolysis in the presence of alternative fuels lowered SNr firing to a slower sustained firing rate. Surprisingly, we found that the decrease in SNr firing was not mediated by ATP-sensitive potassium (KATP) channel activity, but if we lowered the perfusion flow rate or omitted the alternative fuel, KATP channels were activated and could silence SNr firing. The KATP-independent slowing of SNr firing that occurred with glycolytic inhibition in the presence of alternative fuels was consistent with a decrease in a nonselective cationic conductance. Although mitochondrial metabolism alone can prevent severe energy deprivation and KATP channel activation in SNr neurons, active glucose metabolism appears important for keeping open a class of ion channels that is crucial for the high spontaneous firing rate of SNr neurons. PMID:25471572

  19. Brain-borne IL-1 adjusts glucoregulation and provides fuel support to astrocytes and neurons in an autocrine/paracrine manner.

    PubMed

    Del Rey, A; Verdenhalven, M; Lörwald, A C; Meyer, C; Hernangómez, M; Randolf, A; Roggero, E; König, A M; Heverhagen, J T; Guaza, C; Besedovsky, H O

    2016-09-01

    It is still controversial which mediators regulate energy provision to activated neural cells, as insulin does in peripheral tissues. Interleukin-1β (IL-1β) may mediate this effect as it can affect glucoregulation, it is overexpressed in the 'healthy' brain during increased neuronal activity, and it supports high-energy demanding processes such as long-term potentiation, memory and learning. Furthermore, the absence of sustained neuroendocrine and behavioral counterregulation suggests that brain glucose-sensing neurons do not perceive IL-1β-induced hypoglycemia. Here, we show that IL-1β adjusts glucoregulation by inducing its own production in the brain, and that IL-1β-induced hypoglycemia is myeloid differentiation primary response 88 protein (MyD88)-dependent and only partially counteracted by Kir6.2-mediated sensing signaling. Furthermore, we found that, opposite to insulin, IL-1β stimulates brain metabolism. This effect is absent in MyD88-deficient mice, which have neurobehavioral alterations associated to disorders in glucose homeostasis, as during several psychiatric diseases. IL-1β effects on brain metabolism are most likely maintained by IL-1β auto-induction and may reflect a compensatory increase in fuel supply to neural cells. We explore this possibility by directly blocking IL-1 receptors in neural cells. The results showed that, in an activity-dependent and paracrine/autocrine manner, endogenous IL-1 produced by neurons and astrocytes facilitates glucose uptake by these cells. This effect is exacerbated following glutamatergic stimulation and can be passively transferred between cell types. We conclude that the capacity of IL-1β to provide fuel to neural cells underlies its physiological effects on glucoregulation, synaptic plasticity, learning and memory. However, deregulation of IL-1β production could contribute to the alterations in brain glucose metabolism that are detected in several neurologic and psychiatric diseases. PMID:26643538

  20. Neurochemical Pathways That Converge on Thalamic Trigeminovascular Neurons: Potential Substrate for Modulation of Migraine by Sleep, Food Intake, Stress and Anxiety

    PubMed Central

    Noseda, Rodrigo; Kainz, Vanessa; Borsook, David; Burstein, Rami

    2014-01-01

    Dynamic thalamic regulation of sensory signals allows the cortex to adjust better to rapidly changing behavioral, physiological and environmental demands. To fulfill this role, thalamic neurons must themselves be subjected to constantly changing modulatory inputs that originate in multiple neurochemical pathways involved in autonomic, affective and cognitive functions. Our overall goal is to define an anatomical framework for conceptualizing how a ‘decision’ is made on whether a trigeminovascular thalamic neuron fires, for how long, and at what frequency. To begin answering this question, we determine which neuropeptides/neurotransmitters are in a position to modulate thalamic trigeminovascular neurons. Using a combination of in-vivo single-unit recording, juxtacellular labeling with tetramethylrhodamine dextran (TMR) and in-vitro immunohistochemistry, we found that thalamic trigeminovascular neurons were surrounded by high density of axons containing biomarkers of glutamate, GABA, dopamine and serotonin; moderate density of axons containing noradrenaline and histamine; low density of axons containing orexin and melanin concentrating hormone (MCH); but not axons containing CGRP, serotonin 1D receptor, oxytocin or vasopressin. In the context of migraine, the findings suggest that the transmission of headache-related nociceptive signals from the thalamus to the cortex may be modulated by opposing forces (i.e., facilitatory, inhibitory) that are governed by continuous adjustments needed to keep physiological, behavioral, cognitive and emotional homeostasis. PMID:25090640

  1. Analysis of chitin particle size on maximum power generation, power longevity, and Coulombic efficiency in solid-substrate microbial fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rezaei, Farzaneh; Richard, Tom L.; Logan, Bruce E.

    Microbial fuel cells (MFCs) produce bioelectricity from a wide variety of organic and inorganic substrates. Chitin can be used as a slowly degrading substrate in MFCs and thus as a long-term fuel to sustain power by these devices in remote locations. However, little is known about the effects of particle size on power density and length of the power cycle (longevity). We therefore examined power generation from chitin particles sieved to produce three average particle sizes (0.28, 0.46 and 0.78 mm). The longevity increased from 9 to 33 days with an increase in the particle diameter from 0.28 to 0.78 mm. Coulombic efficiency also increased with particle size from 18% to 56%. The maximum power density was lower for the largest (0.78 mm) particles (176 mW m -2), with higher power densities for the 0.28 mm (272 mW m -2) and 0.46 mm (252 mW m -2) particle sizes. The measured lifetimes of these particles scaled with particle diameter to the 1.3 power. Application of a fractal dissolution model indicates chitin particles had a three-dimensional fractal dimension between 2 and 2.3. These results demonstrate particles can be used as a sustainable fuel in MFCs, but that particle sizes will need to be controlled to achieve desired power levels.

  2. Plasma-enhanced atomic layer deposition of nanoscale yttria-stabilized zirconia electrolyte for solid oxide fuel cells with porous substrate.

    PubMed

    Ji, Sanghoon; Cho, Gu Young; Yu, Wonjong; Su, Pei-Chen; Lee, Min Hwan; Cha, Suk Won

    2015-02-11

    Nanoscale yttria-stabilized zirconia (YSZ) electrolyte film was deposited by plasma-enhanced atomic layer deposition (PEALD) on a porous anodic aluminum oxide supporting substrate for solid oxide fuel cells. The minimum thickness of PEALD-YSZ electrolyte required for a consistently high open circuit voltage of 1.17 V at 500 °C is 70 nm, which is much thinner than the reported thickness of 180 nm using nonplasmatic ALD and is also the thinnest attainable value reported in the literatures on a porous supporting substrate. By further reducing the electrolyte thickness, the grain size reduction resulted in high surface grain boundary density at the cathode/electrolyte interface. PMID:25625537

  3. Vestibular Neuronitis

    MedlinePlus

    ... Prevent Painful Swimmer's Ear Additional Content Medical News Vestibular Neuronitis By Lawrence R. Lustig, MD NOTE: This ... Drugs Herpes Zoster Oticus Meniere Disease Purulent Labyrinthitis Vestibular Neuronitis Vestibular neuronitis is a disorder characterized by ...

  4. Yeast fermentation affected by homo- and hetero-fermentative Lactobacilli isolated from fuel ethanol distilleries with sugarcane products as substrates

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The antagonism between by yeast and lactobacilli is largely dependent on the initial population of each organism. While homo-fermentative lactobacillus present higher inhibitory effect upon yeast when in equal cell number, in industrial fuel ethanol conditions where high yeast cell densities prevail...

  5. Cellular pathways of energy metabolism in the brain: is glucose used by neurons or astrocytes?

    PubMed

    Nehlig, Astrid; Coles, Jonathan A

    2007-09-01

    Most techniques presently available to measure cerebral activity in humans and animals, i.e. positron emission tomography (PET), autoradiography, and functional magnetic resonance imaging, do not record the activity of neurons directly. Furthermore, they do not allow the investigator to discriminate which cell type is using glucose, the predominant fuel provided to the brain by the blood. Here, we review the experimental approaches aimed at determining the percentage of glucose that is taken up by neurons and by astrocytes. This review is integrated in an overview of the current concepts on compartmentation and substrate trafficking between astrocytes and neurons. In the brain in vivo, about half of the glucose leaving the capillaries crosses the extracellular space and directly enters neurons. The other half is taken up by astrocytes. Calculations suggest that neurons consume more energy than do astrocytes, implying that astrocytes transfer an intermediate substrate to neurons. Experimental approaches in vitro on the honeybee drone retina and on the isolated vagus nerve also point to a continuous transfer of intermediate metabolites from glial cells to neurons in these tissues. Solid direct evidence of such transfer in the mammalian brain in vivo is still lacking. PET using [(18)F]fluorodeoxyglucose reflects in part glucose uptake by astrocytes but does not indicate to which step the glucose taken up is metabolized within this cell type. Finally, the sequence of metabolic changes occurring during a transient increase of electrical activity in specific regions of the brain remains to be clarified. PMID:17659529

  6. Polyacrylamide gel substrates that simulate the mechanical stiffness of normal and malignant neuronal tissues increase protoporphyin IX synthesis in glioma cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Niu, Carolyn J.; Fisher, Carl; Scheffler, Kira; Wan, Rachel; Maleki, Hoda; Liu, Haijiao; Sun, Yu; Simmons, Craig A.; Birngruber, Reginald; Lilge, Lothar

    2015-09-01

    Protoporphyrin IX (PPIX) produced following the administration of exogenous 5d-aminolevulinic acid is clinically approved for photodynamic therapy and fluorescence-guided resection in various jurisdictions around the world. For both applications, quantification of PPIX forms the basis for accurate therapeutic dose calculation and identification of malignant tissues for resection. While it is well established that the PPIX synthesis and accumulation rates are subject to the cell's biochemical microenvironment, the effect of the physical microenvironment, such as matrix stiffness, has received little attention to date. Here we studied the proliferation rate and PPIX synthesis and accumulation in two glioma cell lines U373 and U118 cultured under five different substrate conditions, including the conventional tissue culture plastic and polyacrylamide gels that simulated tissue stiffness of normal brain (1 kPa) and glioblastoma tumors (12 kPa). We found that the proliferation rate increased with substrate stiffness for both cell lines, but not in a linear fashion. PPIX concentration was significantly higher in cells cultured on tissue-simulating gels than on the much stiffer tissue culture plastic for both cell lines. These findings, albeit preliminary, suggest that the physical microenvironment might be an important determinant of tumor aggressiveness and PPIX synthesis in glioma cells.

  7. Modulation of Heme/Substrate Binding Cleft of Neuronal Nitric-oxide Synthase (nNOS) Regulates Binding of Hsp90 and Hsp70 Proteins and nNOS Ubiquitination*

    PubMed Central

    Peng, Hwei-Ming; Morishima, Yoshihiro; Pratt, William B.; Osawa, Yoichi

    2012-01-01

    Like other nitric-oxide synthase (NOS) enzymes, neuronal NOS (nNOS) turnover and activity are regulated by the Hsp90/Hsp70-based chaperone machinery, which regulates signaling proteins by modulating ligand binding clefts (Pratt, W. B., Morishima, Y., and Osawa, Y. (2008) J. Biol. Chem. 283, 22885–22889). We have previously shown that nNOS turnover is due to Hsp70/CHIP-dependent ubiquitination and proteasomal degradation. In this work, we use an intracellular cross-linking approach to study both chaperone binding and nNOS ubiquitination in intact HEK293 cells. Treatment of cells with NG-nitro-l-arginine, a slowly reversible competitive inhibitor that stabilizes nNOS, decreases both nNOS ubiquitination and binding of Hsp90, Hsp70, and CHIP. Treatment with the calcium ionophore A23187, which increases Ca2+-calmodulin binding to nNOS, increases nNOS ubiquitination and binding of Hsp90, Hsp70, and CHIP in a manner that is specific for changes in the heme/substrate binding cleft. Both Hsp90 and Hsp70 are bound to the expressed nNOS oxygenase domain, which contains the heme/substrate binding cleft, but not to the reductase domain, and binding is increased to an expressed fragment containing both the oxygenase domain and the calmodulin binding site. Overexpression of Hsp70 promotes nNOS ubiquitination and decreases nNOS protein, and overexpression of Hsp90 inhibits nNOS ubiquitination and increases nNOS protein, showing the opposing effects of the two chaperones as they participate in nNOS quality control in the cell. These observations support the notion that changes in the state of the heme/substrate binding cleft affect chaperone binding and thus nNOS ubiquitination. PMID:22128174

  8. Electrolyte supported solid oxide fuel cells with the super large size and thin ytterbia stabilized zirconia substrate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xue, Ye Jian; Miao, He; He, Chang Rong; Wang, Jian Xin; Liu, Man; Sun, Shan Shan; Wang, Qin; Wang, Wei Guo

    2015-04-01

    In this work, the (ZrO2)0.95(Yb2O3)0.05(5YbSZ) electrolyte supported SOFCs with the large area of 10 cm × 10 cm and thin substrate of about 70 μm are prepared, and the microstructures, electrochemical and anti-redox properties of the single cells are investigated systematically. The powders of 5YbSZ with the tetragonal and cubic mixed phase are synthesized by the so-called "solid-liquid composite method" at a somewhat low temperature of 1100 °C. The 5YbSZ electrolyte substrates which are prepared by the tape-casting, multilayer-lamination and sintering method showed the optimal comprehensive performances with the sintering temperature being 1500 °C. By using these electrolyte substrates, the NiO+GDC/5YbSZ/LSM+5YbSZ single cells are obtained at the co-sinter temperature of 1100 °C. The power densities of these cells can reach 0.56 W cm-2 at the output voltage of 0.7 V, and the degradation rate can attain 1.45% kh-1 under a constant current density of 0.2 A cm-2 at the temperature of 830 °C. After 11 redox cycles, no crack through the 5YbSZ electrolyte can be found in the single cells, and the electrochemical properties of the 5YbSZ electrolyte supported single cells show an acceptable degradation.

  9. Neuronal migration on laminin in vitro.

    PubMed

    Liang, S; Crutcher, K A

    1992-03-20

    Chick sympathetic (E-9) or telencephalic (E-7) neurons were cultured at low density on poly-DL-ornithine (PORN), poly-L-lysine (POLS), laminin or laminin-covered PORN or POLS and monitored with time-lapse videomicroscopy. Neurons migrated on laminin, or laminin-covered PORN or POLS, but not on PORN or POLS alone. Neuronal migration did not involve interactions with other cells indicating that neurons are capable of independent migration when exposed to a laminin substrate. PMID:1600626

  10. Microalgae as substrate in low cost terracotta-based microbial fuel cells: Novel application of the catholyte produced.

    PubMed

    Salar-García, M J; Gajda, I; Ortiz-Martínez, V M; Greenman, J; Hanczyc, M M; de los Ríos, A P; Ieropoulos, I A

    2016-06-01

    In this work, the by-product generated during the operation of cylindrical MFCs, made out of terracotta material, is investigated as a feasible means of degrading live microalgae for the first time. In addition to the low cost materials of this design, the reuse of the solution produced in the cathode renders the technology truly green and capable of generating bioenergy. In this study, the effect of a light/dark cycle or dark conditions only on the digestion of live microalgae with the catholyte is investigated. The results show that a combination of light/dark improves degradation and allows algae to be used as substrate in the anode. The addition of 12.5mL of a 1:1 mix of catholyte and microalgae (pre-digested over 5days under light/dark) to the anode, increases the power generation from 7μW to 44μW once all the organic matter in the anode had been depleted. PMID:26995319

  11. Effects of hydrophobic agent content in macro-porous substrates on the fracture behavior of the gas diffusion layer for proton exchange membrane fuel cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Sanwi; Jeong, Byeong-Heon; Hong, Bo Ki; Kim, Taek-Soo

    2014-12-01

    Although the adhesion between the macro-porous substrate (MPS) and micro-porous layer (MPL) of a gas diffusion layer (GDL) is a critical factor that affects the reliability and durability of proton exchange membrane fuel cells, systematic studies quantifying the interfacial fracture energy of GDL have not yet been reported. Therefore, in this study, the interfacial fracture energy of GDLs with different contents of hydrophobic agents in the MPS is quantitatively measured. GDL samples with 0, 5, 10, and 20 wt% of hydrophobic agent content are tested using double cantilever beam fracture mechanics tests. It is observed that the interfacial fracture energy of the GDLs increases as the content of hydrophobic agent increases, due to more favorable interactions between the hydrophobic agents of the MPL and MPS. Optical microscope, scanning electron microscope, and energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscope analyses are performed on the bare and delaminated surfaces in order to investigate the mechanism of the interfacial fracture energy increase of the GDLs.

  12. Functional connectivity in in vitro neuronal assemblies

    PubMed Central

    Poli, Daniele; Pastore, Vito P.; Massobrio, Paolo

    2015-01-01

    Complex network topologies represent the necessary substrate to support complex brain functions. In this work, we reviewed in vitro neuronal networks coupled to Micro-Electrode Arrays (MEAs) as biological substrate. Networks of dissociated neurons developing in vitro and coupled to MEAs, represent a valid experimental model for studying the mechanisms governing the formation, organization and conservation of neuronal cell assemblies. In this review, we present some examples of the use of statistical Cluster Coefficients and Small World indices to infer topological rules underlying the dynamics exhibited by homogeneous and engineered neuronal networks. PMID:26500505

  13. Micropatterning neuronal networks.

    PubMed

    Hardelauf, Heike; Waide, Sarah; Sisnaiske, Julia; Jacob, Peter; Hausherr, Vanessa; Schöbel, Nicole; Janasek, Dirk; van Thriel, Christoph; West, Jonathan

    2014-07-01

    Spatially organised neuronal networks have wide reaching applications, including fundamental research, toxicology testing, pharmaceutical screening and the realisation of neuronal implant interfaces. Despite the large number of methods catalogued in the literature there remains the need to identify a method that delivers high pattern compliance, long-term stability and is widely accessible to neuroscientists. In this comparative study, aminated (polylysine/polyornithine and aminosilanes) and cytophobic (poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) and methylated) material contrasts were evaluated. Backfilling plasma stencilled PEGylated substrates with polylysine does not produce good material contrasts, whereas polylysine patterned on methylated substrates becomes mobilised by agents in the cell culture media which results in rapid pattern decay. Aminosilanes, polylysine substitutes, are prone to hydrolysis and the chemistries prove challenging to master. Instead, the stable coupling between polylysine and PLL-g-PEG can be exploited: Microcontact printing polylysine onto a PLL-g-PEG coated glass substrate provides a simple means to produce microstructured networks of primary neurons that have superior pattern compliance during long term (>1 month) culture. PMID:24855658

  14. Neuronal polarization.

    PubMed

    Takano, Tetsuya; Xu, Chundi; Funahashi, Yasuhiro; Namba, Takashi; Kaibuchi, Kozo

    2015-06-15

    Neurons are highly polarized cells with structurally and functionally distinct processes called axons and dendrites. This polarization underlies the directional flow of information in the central nervous system, so the establishment and maintenance of neuronal polarization is crucial for correct development and function. Great progress in our understanding of how neurons establish their polarity has been made through the use of cultured hippocampal neurons, while recent technological advances have enabled in vivo analysis of axon specification and elongation. This short review and accompanying poster highlight recent advances in this fascinating field, with an emphasis on the signaling mechanisms underlying axon and dendrite specification in vitro and in vivo. PMID:26081570

  15. HEME-DEPENDENT ACTIVATION OF NEURONAL NITRIC-OXIDE SYNTHASE BY CYTOSOL IS DUE TO AN HSP70-DEPENDENT, THIOREDOXIN-MEDIATED THIOL-DISULFIDE INTERCHANGE IN THE HEME/SUBSTRATE BINDING CLEFT†

    PubMed Central

    Morishima, Yoshihiro; Lau, Miranda; Peng, Hwei-Ming; Miyata, Yoshinari; Gestwicki, Jason E.; Pratt, William B.; Osawa, Yoichi

    2011-01-01

    We have reported that heme-dependent activation of apo-neuronal nitric oxide synthase (apo-nNOS) to the active holo-enzyme dimer is dependent upon factors present in reticulocyte lysate and other cytosols. Here, we find that both Hsp70 and thioredoxin are components of the activation system. The apo-nNOS activating activity of reticulocyte lysate is retained in a pool of fractions containing Hsp70 that elute from DE52 prior to Hsp90. All of the activating activity and 20–30% of the Hsp70 elute in the flow-through fraction upon subsequent ATP-agarose chromatography. Apo-nNOS activation by this flow-through fraction is inhibited by pifithrin-μ, a small molecule inhibitor of Hsp70, suggesting that a non-ATP-binding form of Hsp70 is involved in heme-dependent apo-nNOS activation. Previous work has shown that apo-nNOS can be activated by thiol-disulfide exchange, and we show substantial activation with a small molecule dithiol modeled on the active motifs of thioredoxin and protein disulfide isomerase. Further fractionation of the ATP-agarose flow-through on Sephacryl S-300 separates free thioredoxin from apo-nNOS activating activity, Hsp70, and a small amount of thioredoxin, all of which are eluted throughout the macromolecular peak. Incubation of apo-nNOS with the macromolecular fraction in combination with either the thioredoxin-containing fraction or with purified recombinant human thioredoxin restores full heme-dependent activating activity. This supports a model in which Hsp70 binding to apo-nNOS stabilizes an open state of the heme/substrate binding cleft to facilitate thioredoxin access to the active site cysteine that coordinates with heme iron, permitting heme binding and dimerization to the active enzyme. PMID:21755988

  16. Heme-dependent activation of neuronal nitric oxide synthase by cytosol is due to an Hsp70-dependent, thioredoxin-mediated thiol-disulfide interchange in the heme/substrate binding cleft.

    PubMed

    Morishima, Yoshihiro; Lau, Miranda; Peng, Hwei-Ming; Miyata, Yoshinari; Gestwicki, Jason E; Pratt, William B; Osawa, Yoichi

    2011-08-23

    We have reported that heme-dependent activation of apo-neuronal nitric oxide synthase (apo-nNOS) to the active holo-enzyme dimer is dependent upon factors present in reticulocyte lysate and other cytosols. Here, we find that both Hsp70 and thioredoxin are components of the activation system. The apo-nNOS activating activity of reticulocyte lysate is retained in a pool of fractions containing Hsp70 that elute from DE52 prior to Hsp90. All of the activating activity and 20-30% of the Hsp70 elute in the flow-through fraction upon subsequent ATP-agarose chromatography. Apo-nNOS activation by this flow-through fraction is inhibited by pifithrin-μ, a small molecule inhibitor of Hsp70, suggesting that a non-ATP-binding form of Hsp70 is involved in heme-dependent apo-nNOS activation. Previous work has shown that apo-nNOS can be activated by thiol-disulfide exchange, and we show substantial activation with a small molecule dithiol modeled on the active motifs of thioredoxin and protein disulfide isomerase. Further fractionation of the ATP-agarose flow-through on Sephacryl S-300 separates free thioredoxin from apo-nNOS activating activity, Hsp70, and a small amount of thioredoxin, all of which are eluted throughout the macromolecular peak. Incubation of apo-nNOS with the macromolecular fraction in combination either with the thioredoxin-containing fraction or with purified recombinant human thioredoxin restores full heme-dependent activating activity. This supports a model in which Hsp70 binding to apo-nNOS stabilizes an open state of the heme/substrate binding cleft to facilitate thioredoxin access to the active site cysteine that coordinates with heme iron, permitting heme binding and dimerization to the active enzyme. PMID:21755988

  17. Effects of surface asymmetry on neuronal growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Staii, Cristian

    Understanding the brain is of tremendous fundamental importance, but it is immensely challenging because of the complexity of both its architecture and function. A growing body of evidence shows that physical stimuli (stiffness of the growth substrate, gradients of various molecular species, geometry of the surrounding environment, traction forces etc.) play a key role in the wiring up of the nervous system. I will present a systematic experimental and theoretical investigation of neuronal growth on substrates with asymmetric geometries and textures. The experimental results show unidirectional axonal growth on these substrates. We demonstrate that the unidirectional bias is imparted by the surface ratchet geometry and quantify the geometrical guidance cues that control neuronal growth. Our results provide new insight into the role played by physical cues in neuronal growth, and could lead to new methods for stimulating neuronal regeneration and the engineering of artificial neuronal tissue. We acknowledge support from NSF through CBET 1067093.

  18. Neuronal arithmetic

    PubMed Central

    Silver, R. Angus

    2016-01-01

    The vast computational power of the brain has traditionally been viewed as arising from the complex connectivity of neural networks, in which an individual neuron acts as a simple linear summation and thresholding device. However, recent studies show that individual neurons utilize a wealth of nonlinear mechanisms to transform synaptic input into output firing. These mechanisms can arise from synaptic plasticity, synaptic noise, and somatic and dendritic conductances. This tool kit of nonlinear mechanisms confers considerable computational power on both morphologically simple and more complex neurons, enabling them to perform a range of arithmetic operations on signals encoded in a variety of different ways. PMID:20531421

  19. Predominant enhancement of glucose uptake in astrocytes versus neurons during activation of the somatosensory cortex

    PubMed Central

    Chuquet, Julien; Quilichini, Pascale; Nimchinsky, Esther A.; Buzsáki, György

    2010-01-01

    Glucose is the primary energetic substrate of the brain and measurements of its metabolism are the basis of major functional cerebral imaging methods. Contrary to the general view that neurons are fueled solely by glucose in proportion to their energetic needs, recent in vitro and ex vivo analyses suggest that glucose preferentially feeds astrocytes. However, the cellular fate of glucose in the intact brain has not yet been directly observed. We have used a real-time method for measuring glucose uptake in astrocytes and neurons in vivo in male rats by imaging the trafficking of the non-metabolizable glucose analog 6-NBDG using two-photon microscopy. During resting conditions we found that astrocytes and neurons both uptake 6-NBDG at the same rate in the barrel cortex of the rat. However, during intense neuronal activity triggered by whisker stimulation, astrocytes rapidly accelerated their uptake whereas neuronal uptake remained almost unchanged. Following the stimulation period, astrocytes returned to their pre-activation rates of uptake paralleling the neuronal rate of uptake. These observations suggest that glucose is primarily taken-up by astrocytes, supporting the view that functional imaging experiments based on glucose analogs extraction may predominantly reflect the metabolic activity of the astrocytic network. PMID:21068334

  20. Neuron biomechanics probed by atomic force microscopy.

    PubMed

    Spedden, Elise; Staii, Cristian

    2013-01-01

    Mechanical interactions play a key role in many processes associated with neuronal growth and development. Over the last few years there has been significant progress in our understanding of the role played by the substrate stiffness in neuronal growth, of the cell-substrate adhesion forces, of the generation of traction forces during axonal elongation, and of the relationships between the neuron soma elastic properties and its health. The particular capabilities of the Atomic Force Microscope (AFM), such as high spatial resolution, high degree of control over the magnitude and orientation of the applied forces, minimal sample damage, and the ability to image and interact with cells in physiologically relevant conditions make this technique particularly suitable for measuring mechanical properties of living neuronal cells. This article reviews recent advances on using the AFM for studying neuronal biomechanics, provides an overview about the state-of-the-art measurements, and suggests directions for future applications. PMID:23921683

  1. Neuron Biomechanics Probed by Atomic Force Microscopy

    PubMed Central

    Spedden, Elise; Staii, Cristian

    2013-01-01

    Mechanical interactions play a key role in many processes associated with neuronal growth and development. Over the last few years there has been significant progress in our understanding of the role played by the substrate stiffness in neuronal growth, of the cell-substrate adhesion forces, of the generation of traction forces during axonal elongation, and of the relationships between the neuron soma elastic properties and its health. The particular capabilities of the Atomic Force Microscope (AFM), such as high spatial resolution, high degree of control over the magnitude and orientation of the applied forces, minimal sample damage, and the ability to image and interact with cells in physiologically relevant conditions make this technique particularly suitable for measuring mechanical properties of living neuronal cells. This article reviews recent advances on using the AFM for studying neuronal biomechanics, provides an overview about the state-of-the-art measurements, and suggests directions for future applications. PMID:23921683

  2. Motor Neuron Diseases

    MedlinePlus

    ... Enhancing Diversity Find People About NINDS NINDS Motor Neuron Diseases Information Page Condensed from Motor Neuron Diseases ... and Information Publicaciones en Español What are Motor Neuron Diseases? The motor neuron diseases (MNDs) are a ...

  3. Motor Neuron Diseases

    MedlinePlus

    ... called upper motor neurons ) are transmitted to nerve cells in the brain stem and spinal cord (called lower motor neurons ) and from them to particular muscles. Upper motor neurons direct the lower motor neurons ...

  4. Tuning supramolecular mechanics to guide neuron development

    PubMed Central

    Sur, Shantanu; Newcomb, Christina J.; Webber, Matthew J.; Stupp, Samuel I.

    2013-01-01

    The mechanical properties of the extracellular matrix (ECM) are known to influence neuronal differentiation and maturation, though the mechanism by which neuronal cells respond to these biophysical cues is not completely understood. Here we design ECM mimics using self-assembled peptide nanofibers, in which fiber rigidity is tailored by supramolecular interactions, in order to investigate the relationship between matrix stiffness and morphological development of hippocampal neurons. We observe that development of neuronal polarity is accelerated on soft nanofiber substrates, and results from the dynamics of neuronal processes. While the total neurite outgrowth of non-polar neurons remains conserved, weaker adhesion of neurites to soft PA substrate facilitates easier retraction, thus enhancing the frequency of “extension-retraction” events. We hypothesize that higher neurite motility enhances the probability of one neurite to reach a critical length relative to others, thereby initiating the developmental sequence of axon differentiation. Our results suggest that substrate stiffness can influence neuronal development by regulating its dynamics, thus providing useful information on scaffold design for applications in neural regeneration. PMID:23562052

  5. Context-aware modeling of neuronal morphologies

    PubMed Central

    Torben-Nielsen, Benjamin; De Schutter, Erik

    2014-01-01

    Neuronal morphologies are pivotal for brain functioning: physical overlap between dendrites and axons constrain the circuit topology, and the precise shape and composition of dendrites determine the integration of inputs to produce an output signal. At the same time, morphologies are highly diverse and variant. The variance, presumably, originates from neurons developing in a densely packed brain substrate where they interact (e.g., repulsion or attraction) with other actors in this substrate. However, when studying neurons their context is never part of the analysis and they are treated as if they existed in isolation. Here we argue that to fully understand neuronal morphology and its variance it is important to consider neurons in relation to each other and to other actors in the surrounding brain substrate, i.e., their context. We propose a context-aware computational framework, NeuroMaC, in which large numbers of neurons can be grown simultaneously according to growth rules expressed in terms of interactions between the developing neuron and the surrounding brain substrate. As a proof of principle, we demonstrate that by using NeuroMaC we can generate accurate virtual morphologies of distinct classes both in isolation and as part of neuronal forests. Accuracy is validated against population statistics of experimentally reconstructed morphologies. We show that context-aware generation of neurons can explain characteristics of variation. Indeed, plausible variation is an inherent property of the morphologies generated by context-aware rules. We speculate about the applicability of this framework to investigate morphologies and circuits, to classify healthy and pathological morphologies, and to generate large quantities of morphologies for large-scale modeling. PMID:25249944

  6. Multi-timescale modeling of activity-dependent metabolic coupling in the neuron-glia-vasculature ensemble.

    PubMed

    Jolivet, Renaud; Coggan, Jay S; Allaman, Igor; Magistretti, Pierre J

    2015-02-01

    Glucose is the main energy substrate in the adult brain under normal conditions. Accumulating evidence, however, indicates that lactate produced in astrocytes (a type of glial cell) can also fuel neuronal activity. The quantitative aspects of this so-called astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle (ANLS) are still debated. To address this question, we developed a detailed biophysical model of the brain's metabolic interactions. Our model integrates three modeling approaches, the Buxton-Wang model of vascular dynamics, the Hodgkin-Huxley formulation of neuronal membrane excitability and a biophysical model of metabolic pathways. This approach provides a template for large-scale simulations of the neuron-glia-vasculature (NGV) ensemble, and for the first time integrates the respective timescales at which energy metabolism and neuronal excitability occur. The model is constrained by relative neuronal and astrocytic oxygen and glucose utilization, by the concentration of metabolites at rest and by the temporal dynamics of NADH upon activation. These constraints produced four observations. First, a transfer of lactate from astrocytes to neurons emerged in response to activity. Second, constrained by activity-dependent NADH transients, neuronal oxidative metabolism increased first upon activation with a subsequent delayed astrocytic glycolysis increase. Third, the model correctly predicted the dynamics of extracellular lactate and oxygen as observed in vivo in rats. Fourth, the model correctly predicted the temporal dynamics of tissue lactate, of tissue glucose and oxygen consumption, and of the BOLD signal as reported in human studies. These findings not only support the ANLS hypothesis but also provide a quantitative mathematical description of the metabolic activation in neurons and glial cells, as well as of the macroscopic measurements obtained during brain imaging. PMID:25719367

  7. Multi-timescale Modeling of Activity-Dependent Metabolic Coupling in the Neuron-Glia-Vasculature Ensemble

    PubMed Central

    Jolivet, Renaud; Coggan, Jay S.; Allaman, Igor; Magistretti, Pierre J.

    2015-01-01

    Glucose is the main energy substrate in the adult brain under normal conditions. Accumulating evidence, however, indicates that lactate produced in astrocytes (a type of glial cell) can also fuel neuronal activity. The quantitative aspects of this so-called astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle (ANLS) are still debated. To address this question, we developed a detailed biophysical model of the brain’s metabolic interactions. Our model integrates three modeling approaches, the Buxton-Wang model of vascular dynamics, the Hodgkin-Huxley formulation of neuronal membrane excitability and a biophysical model of metabolic pathways. This approach provides a template for large-scale simulations of the neuron-glia-vasculature (NGV) ensemble, and for the first time integrates the respective timescales at which energy metabolism and neuronal excitability occur. The model is constrained by relative neuronal and astrocytic oxygen and glucose utilization, by the concentration of metabolites at rest and by the temporal dynamics of NADH upon activation. These constraints produced four observations. First, a transfer of lactate from astrocytes to neurons emerged in response to activity. Second, constrained by activity-dependent NADH transients, neuronal oxidative metabolism increased first upon activation with a subsequent delayed astrocytic glycolysis increase. Third, the model correctly predicted the dynamics of extracellular lactate and oxygen as observed in vivo in rats. Fourth, the model correctly predicted the temporal dynamics of tissue lactate, of tissue glucose and oxygen consumption, and of the BOLD signal as reported in human studies. These findings not only support the ANLS hypothesis but also provide a quantitative mathematical description of the metabolic activation in neurons and glial cells, as well as of the macroscopic measurements obtained during brain imaging. PMID:25719367

  8. Ex situ evaluation of nanometer range gold coating on stainless steel substrate for automotive polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell bipolar plate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kumar, A.; Ricketts, M.; Hirano, S.

    The bipolar plate in polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cell helps to feed reactant gases to the membrane electrode assembly (MEA) and collect current from the MEA. To facilitate these functions, the bipolar plate material should exhibit excellent electrical conductivity and corrosion resistance under fuel cell operating conditions, and simultaneously be of low-cost to meet commercialization enabling targets for automotive fuel cells. In the present work, we focus on the benchmarking of 10 nm gold coated SS316L (a.k.a. Au Nanoclad ®) bipolar plate material through ex situ tests, which is provided by Daido Steel (Japan). The use of nanometer range Au coatings help to retain the noble properties of gold while significantly reducing the cost of the bipolar plate. The area specific resistance of the flat sample is 0.9 mΩ cm 2 while that for the formed bipolar plate is 6.3 mΩ cm 2 at compaction force of 60 N cm -2. The corrosion current density was less than 1 μA cm -2 at 0.8 V/NHE with air sparge simulating cathodic conditions. Additionally, gold coated SS316L showed anodic passivation of SS316L, thereby exhibiting robustness towards coating defects including surface scratches that may originate during the manufacturing of the bipolar plate. These series of ex situ tests indicate that 10 nm gold coated SS316L has good potential to be considered for commercial bipolar plates in automotive fuel cell stack.

  9. Graphene electrodes for stimulation of neuronal cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koerbitzer, Berit; Krauss, Peter; Nick, Christoph; Yadav, Sandeep; Schneider, Joerg J.; Thielemann, Christiane

    2016-06-01

    Graphene has the ability to improve the electrical interface between neuronal cells and electrodes used for recording and stimulation purposes. It provides a biocompatible coating for common electrode materials such as gold and improves the electrode properties. Graphene electrodes are also prepared on SiO2 substrate to benefit from its optical properties like transparency. We perform electrochemical and Raman characterization of gold electrodes with graphene coating and compare them with graphene on SiO2 substrate. It was found that the substrate plays an important role in the performance of graphene and show that graphene on SiO2 substrate is a very promising material combination for stimulation electrodes.

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

    PubMed

    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. PMID:25870293

  11. Advanced bioreactor systems for gaseous substrates: Conversion of synthesis gas to liquid fuels and removal of SO{sub X} and NO{sub X} from coal combustion gases

    SciTech Connect

    Selvaraj, P.T.; Kaufman, E.N.

    1996-06-01

    The purpose of this research program is the development and demonstration of a new generation of gaseous substrate based bioreactors for the production of liquid fuels from coal synthesis gas and the removal of NO{sub x} and SO{sub x} species from combustion flue gas. This R&D program is a joint effort between the staff of the Bioprocessing Research and Development Center (BRDC) of ORNL and the staff of Bioengineering Resources, Inc. (BRI) under a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA). The Federal Coordinating Council for Science, Engineering, and Technology report entitled {open_quotes}Biotechnology for the 21st Century{close_quotes} and the recent Energy Policy Act of 1992 emphasizes research, development, and demonstration of the conversion of coal to gaseous and liquid fuels and the control of sulfur and nitrogen oxides in effluent streams. This R&D program presents an innovative approach to the use of bioprocessing concepts that will have utility in both of these identified areas.

  12. Advanced bioreactor concepts for gaseous substrates: Conversion of synthesis gas to liquid fuels and removal of SO{sub x} and NO{sub x} from coal combustion gases. CRADA final report

    SciTech Connect

    Kaufman, E.N.; Selvaraj, P.T.

    1997-10-01

    The purpose of the proposed research program was the development and demonstration of a new generation of gaseous substrate-based bioreactors for the production of liquid fuels from coal synthesis gas and the removal of NO{sub x} and SO{sub x} species from coal combustion flue gas. This study addressed the further investigation of optimal bacterial strains, growth media and kinetics for the biocatalytic conversion of coal synthesis gas to liquid fuel such as ethanol and the reduction of gaseous flue gas constituents. The primary emphasis was on the development of advanced bioreactor systems coupled with innovative biocatalytic systems that will provide increased productivity under controlled conditions. It was hoped that this would result in bioprocessing options that have both technical and economic feasibility, thus, ensuring early industrial use. Predictive mathematical models were formulated to accommodate hydrodynamics, mass transport, and conversion kinetics, and provide the data base for design and scale-up. The program was separated into four tasks: (1) Optimization of Biocatalytic Kinetics; (2) Development of Well-mixed and Columnar Reactors; (3) Development of Predictive Mathematical Models; and (4) Industrial Demonstration. Research activities addressing both synthesis gas conversion and flue gas removal were conducted in parallel by BRI and ORNL respectively.

  13. Programmed to Learn? The Ontogeny of Mirror Neurons

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Del Giudice, Marco; Manera, Valeria; Keysers, Christian

    2009-01-01

    Mirror neurons are increasingly recognized as a crucial substrate for many developmental processes, including imitation and social learning. Although there has been considerable progress in describing their function and localization in the primate and adult human brain, we still know little about their ontogeny. The idea that mirror neurons result…

  14. Olfactory Receptor Neuron Dysfunction in Schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Turetsky, Bruce I; Hahn, Chang-Gyu; Arnold, Steven E; Moberg, Paul J

    2012-01-01

    Olfactory impairments are a common feature of schizophrenia. Impairments in odor detection and odor identification are present early in the course of illness and among those at risk for the disorder. These behavioral impairments have been linked to both physiological and anatomical abnormalities in the neural substrates subserving olfaction, including relatively peripheral elements of the olfactory system. The location of olfactory receptor neurons in the nasal epithelium allows noninvasive access to these neurons in living subjects. This offers a unique opportunity to directly assess neuronal integrity in vivo in patients. The peripheral olfactory receptor neuron response to odor stimulation was assessed in 21 schizophrenia patients and 18 healthy comparison subjects. The electroolfactogram, representing the electrical depolarization of the olfactory receptor neurons, was recording following stimulation with different doses and durations of hydrogen sulfide, a pure olfactory nerve stimulant. Schizophrenia patients had abnormally large depolarization responses following odor stimulation, independent of clinical symptomatology, antipsychotic medication dosage or smoking history. Although the precise pathophysiological mechanism is unknown, this olfactory receptor neuron abnormality is consistent with several lines of evidence suggesting altered proliferation or maturation of olfactory receptor neuron cell lineages in schizophrenia. It is also consistent with emerging evidence of disruptions of cyclic AMP-mediated intracellular signaling mechanisms, and may be a marker of these disruptions. It unambiguously demonstrates that neurophysiological disturbances in schizophrenia are not limited to cortical and subcortical structures, but rather include even the most peripheral sensory neurons. PMID:18754006

  15. Olfactory receptor neuron dysfunction in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Turetsky, Bruce I; Hahn, Chang-Gyu; Arnold, Steven E; Moberg, Paul J

    2009-02-01

    Olfactory impairments are a common feature of schizophrenia. Impairments in odor detection and odor identification are present early in the course of illness and among those at risk for the disorder. These behavioral impairments have been linked to both physiological and anatomical abnormalities in the neural substrates subserving olfaction, including relatively peripheral elements of the olfactory system. The location of olfactory receptor neurons in the nasal epithelium allows noninvasive access to these neurons in living subjects. This offers a unique opportunity to directly assess neuronal integrity in vivo in patients. The peripheral olfactory receptor neuron response to odor stimulation was assessed in 21 schizophrenia patients and 18 healthy comparison subjects. The electroolfactogram, representing the electrical depolarization of the olfactory receptor neurons, was recording following stimulation with different doses and durations of hydrogen sulfide, a pure olfactory nerve stimulant. Schizophrenia patients had abnormally large depolarization responses following odor stimulation, independent of clinical symptomatology, antipsychotic medication dosage or smoking history. Although the precise pathophysiological mechanism is unknown, this olfactory receptor neuron abnormality is consistent with several lines of evidence suggesting altered proliferation or maturation of olfactory receptor neuron cell lineages in schizophrenia. It is also consistent with emerging evidence of disruptions of cyclic AMP-mediated intracellular signaling mechanisms, and may be a marker of these disruptions. It unambiguously demonstrates that neurophysiological disturbances in schizophrenia are not limited to cortical and subcortical structures, but rather include even the most peripheral sensory neurons. PMID:18754006

  16. Growth Cone Biomechanics in Peripheral and Central Nervous System Neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Urbach, Jeffrey; Koch, Daniel; Rosoff, Will; Geller, Herbert

    2012-02-01

    The growth cone, a highly motile structure at the tip of an axon, integrates information about the local environment and modulates outgrowth and guidance, but little is known about effects of external mechanical cues and internal mechanical forces on growth-cone mediated guidance. We have investigated neurite outgrowth, traction forces and cytoskeletal substrate coupling on soft elastic substrates for dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons (from the peripheral nervous system) and hippocampal neurons (from the central) to see how the mechanics of the microenvironment affect different populations. We find that the biomechanics of DRG neurons are dramatically different from hippocampal, with DRG neurons displaying relatively large, steady traction forces and maximal outgrowth and forces on substrates of intermediate stiffness, while hippocampal neurons display weak, intermittent forces and limited dependence of outgrowth and forces on substrate stiffness. DRG growth cones have slower rates of retrograde actin flow and higher density of localized paxillin (a protein associated with substrate adhesion complexes) compared to hippocampal neurons, suggesting that the difference in force generation is due to stronger adhesions and therefore stronger substrate coupling in DRG growth cones.

  17. Lactate preserves neuronal metabolism and function following antecedent recurrent hypoglycemia

    PubMed Central

    Herzog, Raimund I.; Jiang, Lihong; Herman, Peter; Zhao, Chen; Sanganahalli, Basavaraju G.; Mason, Graeme F.; Hyder, Fahmeed; Rothman, Douglas L.; Sherwin, Robert S.; Behar, Kevin L.

    2013-01-01

    Hypoglycemia occurs frequently during intensive insulin therapy in patients with both type 1 and type 2 diabetes and remains the single most important obstacle in achieving tight glycemic control. Using a rodent model of hypoglycemia, we demonstrated that exposure to antecedent recurrent hypoglycemia leads to adaptations of brain metabolism so that modest increments in circulating lactate allow the brain to function normally under acute hypoglycemic conditions. We characterized 3 major factors underlying this effect. First, we measured enhanced transport of lactate both into as well as out of the brain that resulted in only a small increase of its contribution to total brain oxidative capacity, suggesting that it was not the major fuel. Second, we observed a doubling of the glucose contribution to brain metabolism under hypoglycemic conditions that restored metabolic activity to levels otherwise only observed at euglycemia. Third, we determined that elevated lactate is critical for maintaining glucose metabolism under hypoglycemia, which preserves neuronal function. These unexpected findings suggest that while lactate uptake was enhanced, it is insufficient to support metabolism as an alternate substrate to replace glucose. Lactate is, however, able to modulate metabolic and neuronal activity, serving as a “metabolic regulator” instead. PMID:23543056

  18. Optimization of bioelectricity generation in fed-batch microbial fuel cell: effect of electrode material, initial substrate concentration, and cycle time.

    PubMed

    Cirik, Kevser

    2014-05-01

    Effective wastewater treatment and electricity generation using dual-chamber microbial fuel cell (MFC) will require a better understanding of how operational parameters affect system performance. Therefore, the main aim of this study is to investigate the bioelectricity production in a dual-chambered MFC-operated batch mode under different operational conditions. Initially, platinum (Pt) and mixed metal oxide titanium (Ti-TiO2) electrodes were used to investigate the influence of the electrode materials on the power generation at initial dissolved organic carbon (DOC) concentration of 400 mg/L and cycle time of 15 days. MFC equipped with Ti-TiO2 electrode performed better and was used to examine the effect of influent DOC concentration and cycle time on MFC performance. Increasing influent DOC concentration resulted in improving electricity generation, corresponding to a 1.65-fold increase in power density. However, decrease in cycle time from 15 to 5 days adversely affected reactor performance. Maximum DOC removal was 90 ± 3 %, which was produced at 15-day cycle time with an initial DOC of 3,600 mg/L, corresponding to maximum power generation of about 7,205 mW/m(2). PMID:24639089

  19. Cytochrome c is released from mitochondria in a reactive oxygen species (ROS)-dependent fashion and can operate as a ROS scavenger and as a respiratory substrate in cerebellar neurons undergoing excitotoxic death.

    PubMed

    Atlante, A; Calissano, P; Bobba, A; Azzariti, A; Marra, E; Passarella, S

    2000-11-24

    In rat cerebellar granule cells both reactive oxygen species production and release of cytochrome c take place during glutamate toxicity. This investigation was aimed (i) to ascertain whether and how these two processes are related and (ii) to gain insight into the role played by the released cytochrome c in the onset of neurotoxicity. Cytochrome c release takes place owing to the generation of reactive oxygen species both in glutamate-treated cerebellar granule cells and in sister control cultures incubated in the presence of the reactive oxygen species-generating system consisting of xanthine plus xanthine oxidase. In the early phase of neurotoxicity (30-min glutamate exposure) about 40% of the maximum (as measured at 3 h of glutamate exposure) cytochrome c release was found to occur in cerebellar granule cells from mitochondria that were essentially coupled and intact and that had a negligible production of oxygen free radicals. Contrarily, mitochondria from cells treated with glutamate for 3 h were mostly uncoupled and produced reactive oxygen species at a high rate. The cytosolic fraction containing the released cytochrome c was able to transfer electrons from superoxide anion to molecular oxygen via the respiratory chain and was found to partially prevent glutamate toxicity when added externally to cerebellar neurons undergoing necrosis. In the light of these findings, we propose that in the early phase of neurotoxicity, cytochrome c release can be part of a cellular and mitochondrial defense mechanism against oxidative stress. PMID:10980192

  20. Dorsal Raphe Dopamine Neurons Represent the Experience of Social Isolation.

    PubMed

    Matthews, Gillian A; Nieh, Edward H; Vander Weele, Caitlin M; Halbert, Sarah A; Pradhan, Roma V; Yosafat, Ariella S; Glober, Gordon F; Izadmehr, Ehsan M; Thomas, Rain E; Lacy, Gabrielle D; Wildes, Craig P; Ungless, Mark A; Tye, Kay M

    2016-02-11

    The motivation to seek social contact may arise from either positive or negative emotional states, as social interaction can be rewarding and social isolation can be aversive. While ventral tegmental area (VTA) dopamine (DA) neurons may mediate social reward, a cellular substrate for the negative affective state of loneliness has remained elusive. Here, we identify a functional role for DA neurons in the dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN), in which we observe synaptic changes following acute social isolation. DRN DA neurons show increased activity upon social contact following isolation, revealed by in vivo calcium imaging. Optogenetic activation of DRN DA neurons increases social preference but causes place avoidance. Furthermore, these neurons are necessary for promoting rebound sociability following an acute period of isolation. Finally, the degree to which these neurons modulate behavior is predicted by social rank, together supporting a role for DRN dopamine neurons in mediating a loneliness-like state. PAPERCLIP. PMID:26871628

  1. Dorsal Raphe Dopamine Neurons Represent the Experience of Social Isolation

    PubMed Central

    Matthews, Gillian A.; Nieh, Edward H.; Vander Weele, Caitlin M.; Halbert, Sarah A.; Pradhan, Roma V.; Yosafat, Ariella S.; Glober, Gordon F.; Izadmehr, Ehsan M.; Thomas, Rain E.; Lacy, Gabrielle D.; Wildes, Craig P.; Ungless, Mark A.; Tye, Kay M.

    2016-01-01

    Summary The motivation to seek social contact may arise from either positive or negative emotional states, as social interaction can be rewarding and social isolation can be aversive. While ventral tegmental area (VTA) dopamine (DA) neurons may mediate social reward, a cellular substrate for the negative affective state of loneliness has remained elusive. Here, we identify a functional role for DA neurons in the dorsal raphe nucleus (DRN), in which we observe synaptic changes following acute social isolation. DRN DA neurons show increased activity upon social contact following isolation, revealed by in vivo calcium imaging. Optogenetic activation of DRN DA neurons increases social preference but causes place avoidance. Furthermore, these neurons are necessary for promoting rebound sociability following an acute period of isolation. Finally, the degree to which these neurons modulate behavior is predicted by social rank, together supporting a role for DRN dopamine neurons in mediating a loneliness-like state. PaperClip PMID:26871628

  2. Physiology and pharmacology of striatal neurons.

    PubMed

    Kreitzer, Anatol C

    2009-01-01

    The basal ganglia occupy the core of the forebrain and consist of evolutionarily conserved motor nuclei that form recurrent circuits critical for motivation and motor planning. The striatum is the main input nucleus of the basal ganglia and a key neural substrate for procedural learning and memory. The vast majority of striatal neurons are spiny GABAergic projection neurons, which exhibit slow but temporally precise spiking in vivo. Contributing to this precision are several different types of interneurons that constitute only a small fraction of total neuron number but play a critical role in regulating striatal output. This review examines the cellular physiology and modulation of striatal neurons that give rise to their unique properties and function. PMID:19400717

  3. Electrophysiological recordings of patterned rat brain stem slice neurons.

    PubMed

    Lauer, L; Vogt, A; Yeung, C K; Knoll, W; Offenhäusser, A

    2002-08-01

    Dissociated neuronal cultures on substrates patterned with extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins have yielded much information in the past. However, although the culture of brain slices has many advantages over dissociated neuronal cultures, its feasibility on patterned substrates has not been demonstrated to date. In the present study, neuronal outgrowth from brain stem slices onto homogeneous control substrates, and onto laminin structures of grid- and line-shape was achieved. Cultures were evaluated by means of phase contrast microscopy, antibody staining, and patch-clamp measurements. Only patterns with line sizes of more than 4 microm yielded satisfactory neuronal outgrowth. The size of the nodes in the pattern influenced the nodal compliance of the spreading cells and the amount of unstructured overgrowth. Best grid patterns were 4 microm lines and 10 microm nodes, best line patterns were 4 microm lines and 20 microm nodes. On patterned substrates, average sodium and potassium currents were reduced by approximately 50% compared to controls, whereas area-normalized ion-currents were in the same order of magnitude. This indicates that as a consequence of the pattern-enforced geometrical confinement, neurons tend to have a smaller surface. In addition, neurons on patterned substrates were rapidly covered with glial overgrowth. This was shown by antibody staining. PMID:12102183

  4. Simple and effective graphene laser processing for neuron patterning application

    PubMed Central

    Lorenzoni, Matteo; Brandi, Fernando; Dante, Silvia; Giugni, Andrea; Torre, Bruno

    2013-01-01

    A straightforward fabrication technique to obtain patterned substrates promoting ordered neuron growth is presented. Chemical vapor deposition (CVD) single layer graphene (SLG) was machined by means of single pulse UV laser ablation technique at the lowest effective laser fluence in order to minimize laser damage effects. Patterned substrates were then coated with poly-D-lysine by means of a simple immersion in solution. Primary embryonic hippocampal neurons were cultured on our substrate, demonstrating an ordered interconnected neuron pattern mimicking the pattern design. Surprisingly, the functionalization is more effective on the SLG, resulting in notably higher alignment for neuron adhesion and growth. Therefore the proposed technique should be considered a valuable candidate to realize a new generation of highly specialized biosensors. PMID:23739674

  5. The SH2 domain is crucial for function of Fyn in neuronal migration and cortical lamination

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Xi; Hu, Xinde; Song, Lingzhen; An, Lei; Duan, Minghui; Chen, Shulin; Zhao, Shanting

    2015-01-01

    Neurons in the developing brain form the cortical plate (CP) in an inside-out manner, in which the late-born neurons are located more superficially than the early-born neurons. Fyn, a member of the Src family kinases, plays an important role in neuronal migration by binding to many substrates. However, the role of the Src-homology 2 (SH2) domain in function of Fyn in neuronal migration remains poorly understood. Here, we demonstrate that the SH2 domain is essential for the action of Fyn in neuronal migration and cortical lamination. A point mutation in the Fyn SH2 domain (FynR176A) impaired neuronal migration and their final location in the cerebral cortex, by inducing neuronal aggregation and branching. Thus, we provide the first evidence of the Fyn SH2 domain contributing to neuronal migration and neuronal morphogenesis. [BMB Reports 2015; 48(2): 97-102] PMID:24912779

  6. Advanced bioreactor systems for gaseous substrates: Conversion of synthesis gas to liquid fuels and removal of SO{sub x} and NO{sub x} from coal combustion gases

    SciTech Connect

    Selvaraj, P.T.; Kaufman, E.N.

    1995-06-01

    The purpose of the proposed research program is the development and demonstration of a new generation of gaseous substrate-based bioreactors for the production of liquid fuels from coal synthesis gas and the removal of NO{sub x} and SO{sub x} species from combustion flue gas. Coal is thermochemically converted to synthesis gas consisting of carbon monoxide, hydrogen, and carbon dioxide. Conventional catalytic upgrading of coal synthesis gas into alcohols or other oxychemicals is subject to several processing problems such as interference of the other constituents in the synthesis gases, strict CO/H{sub 2} ratios required to maintain a particular product distribution and yield, and high processing cost due to the operation at high temperatures and pressures. Recently isolated and identified bacterial strains capable of utilizing CO as a carbon source and coverting CO and H{sub 2} into mixed alcohols offer the potential of performing synthesis gas conversion using biocatalysts. Biocatalytic conversion, though slower than the conventional process, has several advantages such as decreased interference of the other constituents in the synthesis gases, no requirement for strict CO/H{sub 2} ratios, and decreased capital and oeprating costs as the biocatalytic reactions occur at ambient temperatures and pressures.

  7. Controlling Neurite Outgrowth with Patterned Substrates

    PubMed Central

    Yang, In Hong; Co, Carlos C.; Ho, Chia-Chi

    2011-01-01

    In vivo, neurons form neurites, one of which develops into the axon while others become dendrites. While this neuritogenesis process is well programmed in vivo, there are limited methods to control the number and location of neurite extension in vitro. Here we report a method to control neuritogenesis by confining neurons in specific regions using cell resistant poly(oligoethyleneglycol methacrylate-co-methacrylic acid (OEGMA-co-MA)) or poly(ethyleneglycol-block-lactic acid) PEG-PLA. Line patterned substrates reduce multiple extension of neurites and stimulate bi-directional neurite budding for PC12 and cortical neurons. PC12 cells on 20 and 30 µm line patterns extended one neurite in each direction along the line pattern while cortical neuron on 20 and 30 µm line patterns extended one or two neurites in each direction along the line pattern. Statistical analysis of neurite lengths revealed that PC12 cells and cortical neurons on line patterns extend longer neurites. The ability to guide formation of neurites on patterned substrates is useful for generating neural networks and promoting neurite elongation. PMID:21484989

  8. Process entanglement as a neuronal anchorage mechanism to rough surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sorkin, Raya; Greenbaum, Alon; David-Pur, Moshe; Anava, Sarit; Ayali, Amir; Ben-Jacob, Eshel; Hanein, Yael

    2009-01-01

    The organization of neurons and glia cells on substrates composed of pristine carbon nanotube islands was investigated using high resolution scanning electron microscopy, immunostaining and confocal microscopy. Neurons were found bound and preferentially anchored to the rough surfaces; moreover, the morphology of the neuronal processes on the small, isolated islands of high density carbon nanotubes was found to be conspicuously curled and entangled. We further demonstrate that the roughness of the surface must match the diameter of the neuronal processes in order to allow them to bind. The results presented here suggest that entanglement, a mechanical effect, may constitute an additional mechanism by which neurons (and possibly other cell types) anchor themselves to rough surfaces. Understanding the nature of the interface between neurons and carbon nanotubes is essential to effectively harness carbon nanotube technology in neurological applications such as neuro-prosthetic and retinal electrodes.

  9. Fuel flexible fuel injector

    SciTech Connect

    Tuthill, Richard S; Davis, Dustin W; Dai, Zhongtao

    2015-02-03

    A disclosed fuel injector provides mixing of fuel with airflow by surrounding a swirled fuel flow with first and second swirled airflows that ensures mixing prior to or upon entering the combustion chamber. Fuel tubes produce a central fuel flow along with a central airflow through a plurality of openings to generate the high velocity fuel/air mixture along the axis of the fuel injector in addition to the swirled fuel/air mixture.

  10. Effects of surface asymmetry on neuronal growth.

    PubMed

    Spedden, Elise; Wiens, Matthew R; Demirel, Melik C; Staii, Cristian

    2014-01-01

    Detailed knowledge of how the surface physical properties, such as mechanics, topography and texture influence axonal outgrowth and guidance is essential for understanding the processes that control neuron development, the formation of functional neuronal connections and nerve regeneration. Here we synthesize asymmetric surfaces with well-controlled topography and texture and perform a systematic experimental and theoretical investigation of axonal outgrowth on these substrates. We demonstrate unidirectional axonal bias imparted by the surface ratchet-based topography and quantify the topographical guidance cues that control neuronal growth. We describe the growth cone dynamics using a general stochastic model (Fokker-Planck formalism) and use this model to extract two key dynamical parameters: diffusion (cell motility) coefficient and asymmetric drift coefficient. The drift coefficient is identified with the torque caused by the asymmetric ratchet topography. We relate the observed directional bias in axonal outgrowth to cellular contact guidance behavior, which results in an increase in the cell-surface coupling with increased surface anisotropy. We also demonstrate that the disruption of cytoskeletal dynamics through application of Taxol (stabilizer of microtubules) and Blebbistatin (inhibitor of myosin II activity) greatly reduces the directional bias imparted by these asymmetric surfaces. These results provide new insight into the role played by topographical cues in neuronal growth and could lead to new methods for stimulating neuronal regeneration and the engineering of artificial neuronal tissue. PMID:25184796

  11. Studying neuronal biomechanics and its role in CNS development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Franze, Kristian; Svoboda, Hanno; da F. Costa, Luciano; Guck, Jochen; Holt, Christine

    2013-03-01

    During the development of the nervous system, neurons migrate and grow over great distances. Currently, our understanding of nervous tissue development is, in large part, based on studies of biochemical signaling. Despite the fact that forces are involved in any kind of cell motion, mechanical aspects have so far rarely been considered. Here we used deformable cell culture substrates, traction force microscopy and calcium imaging to investigate how neurons probe and respond to their mechanical environment. While the growth rate of retinal ganglion cell axons was increased on stiffer substrates, their tendency to grow in bundles, which they show in vivo, was significantly enhanced on more compliant substrates. Moreover, if grown on substrates incorporating linear stiffness gradients, neuronal axons were repelled by stiff substrates. Mechanosensing involved the application of forces driven by the interaction of actin and myosin II, and the activation of stretch-activated ion channels leading to calcium influxes into the cells. Applying a modified atomic force microscopy techniquein vivo, we found mechanical gradients in developing brain tissue along which neurons grow. The application of chondroitin sulfate, which is a major extracellular matrix component in the developing brain, changed tissue mechanics and disrupted axonal pathfinding. Hence, our data suggest that neuronal growth is not only guided by chemical signals - as it is currently assumed - but also by the nervous tissue's mechanical properties.

  12. From migration to settlement: the pathways, migration modes and dynamics of neurons in the developing brain

    PubMed Central

    HATANAKA, Yumiko; ZHU, Yan; TORIGOE, Makio; KITA, Yoshiaki; MURAKAMI, Fujio

    2016-01-01

    Neuronal migration is crucial for the construction of the nervous system. To reach their correct destination, migrating neurons choose pathways using physical substrates and chemical cues of either diffusible or non-diffusible nature. Migrating neurons extend a leading and a trailing process. The leading process, which extends in the direction of migration, determines navigation, in particular when a neuron changes its direction of migration. While most neurons simply migrate radially, certain neurons switch their mode of migration between radial and tangential, with the latter allowing migration to destinations far from the neurons’ site of generation. Consequently, neurons with distinct origins are intermingled, which results in intricate neuronal architectures and connectivities and provides an important basis for higher brain function. The trailing process, in contrast, contributes to the late stage of development by turning into the axon, thus contributing to the formation of neuronal circuits. PMID:26755396

  13. Catalyst Substrates Remove Contaminants, Produce Fuel

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2012-01-01

    A spacecraft is the ultimate tight building. We don t want any leaks, and there is very little fresh air coming in, says Jay Perry, an aerospace engineer at Marshall Space Flight Center. As a result, there is a huge potential for a buildup of contaminants from a host of sources. Inside a spacecraft, contaminants can be introduced from the materials that make spacecraft components, electronics boxes, or activities by the crew such as food preparation or cleaning. Humans also generate contaminants by breathing and through the body s natural metabolic processes. As part of the sophisticated Environmental Control and Life Support System on the International Space Station (ISS), a trace contaminant control system removes carbon dioxide and other impurities from the cabin atmosphere. To maintain healthy levels, the system uses adsorbent media to filter chemical contaminant molecules and a high-temperature catalytic oxidizer to change the chemical structure of the contaminants to something more benign, usually carbon dioxide and water. In the 1990s, while researching air quality control technology for extended spaceflight travel, Perry and others at Marshall were looking for a regenerable process for the continuous removal of carbon dioxide and trace chemical contaminants on long-duration manned space flights. At the time, the existing technology used on U.S. spacecraft could only be used once, which meant that a spacecraft had to carry additional spare parts for use in case the first one was depleted, or the spacecraft would have to return to Earth to exchange the components.

  14. Power electronics substrate for direct substrate cooling

    DOEpatents

    Le, Khiet; Ward, Terence G.; Mann, Brooks S.; Yankoski, Edward P.; Smith, Gregory S.

    2012-05-01

    Systems and apparatus are provided for power electronics substrates adapted for direct substrate cooling. A power electronics substrate comprises a first surface configured to have electrical circuitry disposed thereon, a second surface, and a plurality of physical features on the second surface. The physical features are configured to promote a turbulent boundary layer in a coolant impinged upon the second surface.

  15. Nuclear fuel element

    DOEpatents

    Armijo, Joseph S.; Coffin, Jr., Louis F.

    1983-01-01

    A nuclear fuel element for use in the core of a nuclear reactor is disclosed and has a composite cladding having a substrate and a metal barrier metallurgically bonded on the inside surface of the substrate so that the metal barrier forms a shield between the substrate and the nuclear fuel material held within the cladding. The metal barrier forms about 1 to about 30 percent of the thickness of the cladding and is comprised of a low neutron absorption metal of substantially pure zirconium. The metal barrier serves as a preferential reaction site for gaseous impurities and fission products and protects the substrate from contact and reaction with such impurities and fission products. The substrate of the composite cladding is selected from conventional cladding materials and preferably is a zirconium alloy. Methods of manufacturing the composite cladding are also disclosed.

  16. Mesmerising mirror neurons.

    PubMed

    Heyes, Cecilia

    2010-06-01

    Mirror neurons have been hailed as the key to understanding social cognition. I argue that three currents of thought-relating to evolution, atomism and telepathy-have magnified the perceived importance of mirror neurons. When they are understood to be a product of associative learning, rather than an adaptation for social cognition, mirror neurons are no longer mesmerising, but they continue to raise important questions about both the psychology of science and the neural bases of social cognition. PMID:20167276

  17. Signal transfer within a cultured asymmetric cortical neuron circuit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Isomura, Takuya; Shimba, Kenta; Takayama, Yuzo; Takeuchi, Akimasa; Kotani, Kiyoshi; Jimbo, Yasuhiko

    2015-12-01

    Objective. Simplified neuronal circuits are required for investigating information representation in nervous systems and for validating theoretical neural network models. Here, we developed patterned neuronal circuits using micro fabricated devices, comprising a micro-well array bonded to a microelectrode-array substrate. Approach. The micro-well array consisted of micrometre-scale wells connected by tunnels, all contained within a silicone slab called a micro-chamber. The design of the micro-chamber confined somata to the wells and allowed axons to grow through the tunnels bidirectionally but with a designed, unidirectional bias. We guided axons into the point of the arrow structure where one of the two tunnel entrances is located, making that the preferred direction. Main results. When rat cortical neurons were cultured in the wells, their axons grew through the tunnels and connected to neurons in adjoining wells. Unidirectional burst transfers and other asymmetric signal-propagation phenomena were observed via the substrate-embedded electrodes. Seventy-nine percent of burst transfers were in the forward direction. We also observed rapid propagation of activity from sites of local electrical stimulation, and significant effects of inhibitory synapse blockade on bursting activity. Significance. These results suggest that this simple, substrate-controlled neuronal circuit can be applied to develop in vitro models of the function of cortical microcircuits or deep neural networks, better to elucidate the laws governing the dynamics of neuronal networks.

  18. Neuronal-glial networks as substrate for CNS integration.

    PubMed

    Verkhratsky, A; Toescu, E C

    2006-01-01

    Astrocytes have been considered, for a long time, as the support and house-keeping cells of the nervous system. Indeed, the astrocytes play very important metabolic roles in the brain, but the catalogue of nervous system functions or activities that involve directly glial participation has extended dramatically in the last decade. In addition to the further refining of the signalling capacity of the neuroglial networks and the detailed reassessment of the interactions between glia and vascular bed in the brain, one of the important salient features of the increased glioscience activity in the last few years was the morphological and functional demonstration that protoplasmic astrocytes occupy well defined spatial territories, with only limited areas of morphological overlapping, but still able to communicate with adjacent neighbours through intercellular junctions. All these features form the basis for a possible reassessment of the nature of integration of activity in the central nervous system that could raise glia to a role of central integrator. PMID:17125587

  19. Neuronal-glial networks as substrate for CNS integration

    PubMed Central

    Verkhratsky, A; Toescu, E C

    2006-01-01

    Astrocytes have been considered, for a long time, as the support and house-keeping cells of the nervous system. Indeed, the astrocytes play very important metabolic roles in the brain, but the catalogue of nervous system functions or activities that involve directly glial participation has extended dramatically in the last decade. In addition to the further refining of the signalling capacity of the neuroglial networks and the detailed reassessment of the interactions between glia and vascular bed in the brain, one of the important salient features of the increased glioscience activity in the last few years was the morphological and functional demonstration that protoplasmic astrocytes occupy well defined spatial territories, with only limited areas of morphological overlapping, but still able to communicate with adjacent neighbours through intercellular junctions. All these features form the basis for a possible reassessment of the nature of integration of activity in the central nervous system that could raise glia to a role of central integrator.

  20. Neuronal substrates and functional consequences of prenatal cannabis exposure

    PubMed Central

    Calvigioni, Daniela; Hurd, Yasmin L.; Keimpema, Erik

    2015-01-01

    Cannabis remains one of the world’s most widely used substance of abuse amongst pregnant women. Trends of the last 50 years show an increase in popularity in child-bearing women together with a constant increase in cannabis potency. In addition, potent herbal “legal” highs containing synthetic cannabinoids that mimic the effects of cannabis with unknown pharmacological and toxicological effects have gained rapid popularity amongst young adults. Despite the surge in cannabis use during pregnancy, little is known about the neurobiological and psychological consequences in the exposed offspring. In this review, we emphasize the importance of maternal programming, defined as the intrauterine presentation of maternal stimuli to the foetus, in neurodevelopment. In particular, we focus on cannabis-mediated maternal adverse effects, resulting in direct central nervous system alteration or sensitization to late-onset chronic and neuropsychiatric disorders. We compare clinical and preclinical experimental studies on the effects of foetal cannabis exposure until early adulthood, to stress the importance of animal models that permit the fine control of environmental variables and allow the dissection of cannabis-mediated molecular cascades in the developing central nervous system. In sum, we conclude that preclinical experimental models confirm clinical studies and that cannabis exposure evokes significant molecular modifications to neurodevelopmental programs leading to neurophysiological and behavioural abnormalities. PMID:24793873

  1. Life and death of neurons in the aging brain

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Morrison, J. H.; Hof, P. R.; Bloom, F. E. (Principal Investigator)

    1997-01-01

    Neurodegenerative disorders are characterized by extensive neuron death that leads to functional decline, but the neurobiological correlates of functional decline in normal aging are less well defined. For decades, it has been a commonly held notion that widespread neuron death in the neocortex and hippocampus is an inevitable concomitant of brain aging, but recent quantitative studies suggest that neuron death is restricted in normal aging and unlikely to account for age-related impairment of neocortical and hippocampal functions. In this article, the qualitative and quantitative differences between aging and Alzheimer's disease with respect to neuron loss are discussed, and age-related changes in functional and biochemical attributes of hippocampal circuits that might mediate functional decline in the absence of neuron death are explored. When these data are viewed comprehensively, it appears that the primary neurobiological substrates for functional impairment in aging differ in important ways from those in neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease.

  2. Protein palmitoylation in neuronal development and synaptic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Fukata, Yuko; Fukata, Masaki

    2010-03-01

    Protein palmitoylation, a classical and common lipid modification, regulates diverse aspects of neuronal protein trafficking and function. The reversible nature of palmitoylation provides a potential general mechanism for protein shuttling between intracellular compartments. The recent discovery of palmitoylating enzymes--a large DHHC (Asp-His-His-Cys) protein family--and the development of new proteomic and imaging methods have accelerated palmitoylation analysis. It is becoming clear that individual DHHC enzymes generate and maintain the specialized compartmentalization of substrates in polarized neurons. Here, we discuss the regulatory mechanisms for dynamic protein palmitoylation and the emerging roles of protein palmitoylation in various aspects of pathophysiology, including neuronal development and synaptic plasticity. PMID:20168314

  3. Transport mechanisms for adenosine and uridine in primary-cultured rat cortical neurons and astrocytes.

    PubMed

    Nagai, Katsuhito; Nagasawa, Kazuki; Fujimoto, Sadaki

    2005-09-01

    Endogenous adenosine and uridine are important modulators of neural survival and activity. In the present study, we examined transport mechanisms of adenosine and uridine in primary-cultured rat cortical neurons, and compared the results for neurons with those for astrocytes. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction identified the mRNAs for ENT1, ENT2, and CNT2, but not CNT1 and CNT3, in neurons and astrocytes. [3H]Adenosine and [3H]uridine were time-, temperature-, and concentration-dependently taken up into neurons and astrocytes. In kinetic analyses, the uptake of both substrates by neurons and astrocytes consisted of two and one, respectively, saturable transport components. The uptake clearance for both substrates by neurons was greater than that by astrocytes. The relative contribution of the high-affinity major component of both substrates to total uptake was estimated to be approximately 80% in neurons. The uptake of [3H]adenosine and [3H]uridine by both neurons and astrocytes was almost entirely Na+-independent, and sensitive to micro, but not nano, molar concentrations of nitrobenzylmercaptopurine riboside, which are transport characteristics of ENT2. Therefore, it was indicated that adenosine and uridine are more efficiently taken up into neurons than into astrocytes, and ENT2 may predominantly contribute to the transport of the nucleosides as a high-affinity transport system in neurons, as in the case of astrocytes. PMID:16043124

  4. Multifunctional role of astrocytes as gatekeepers of neuronal energy supply

    PubMed Central

    Stobart, Jillian L.; Anderson, Christopher M.

    2013-01-01

    Dynamic adjustments to neuronal energy supply in response to synaptic activity are critical for neuronal function. Glial cells known as astrocytes have processes that ensheath most central synapses and express G-protein-coupled neurotransmitter receptors and transporters that respond to neuronal activity. Astrocytes also release substrates for neuronal oxidative phosphorylation and have processes that terminate on the surface of brain arterioles and can influence vascular smooth muscle tone and local blood flow. Membrane receptor or transporter-mediated effects of glutamate represent a convergence point of astrocyte influence on neuronal bioenergetics. Astrocytic glutamate uptake drives glycolysis and subsequent shuttling of lactate from astrocytes to neurons for oxidative metabolism. Astrocytes also convert synaptically reclaimed glutamate to glutamine, which is returned to neurons for glutamate salvage or oxidation. Finally, astrocytes store brain energy currency in the form of glycogen, which can be mobilized to produce lactate for neuronal oxidative phosphorylation in response to glutamatergic neurotransmission. These mechanisms couple synaptically driven astrocytic responses to glutamate with release of energy substrates back to neurons to match demand with supply. In addition, astrocytes directly influence the tone of penetrating brain arterioles in response to glutamatergic neurotransmission, coordinating dynamic regulation of local blood flow. We will describe the role of astrocytes in neurometabolic and neurovascular coupling in detail and discuss, in turn, how astrocyte dysfunction may contribute to neuronal bioenergetic deficit and neurodegeneration. Understanding the role of astrocytes as a hub for neurometabolic and neurovascular coupling mechanisms is a critical underpinning for therapeutic development in a broad range of neurodegenerative disorders characterized by chronic generalized brain ischemia and brain microvascular dysfunction. PMID:23596393

  5. Quantum neuron design

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Behrman, Elizabeth; Steck, James

    2014-03-01

    In previous work, we have developed quantum systems that can learn and do information processing much like artificial neural networks. These learning methods have some advantages over other implementations of quantum computing in that they construct their own algorithms and could be robust to noise and decoherence. Here we take the next step, by designing quantum neurons that have some of the important behaviors of biological neurons, yet have the advantage of being complex valued and having quantum computing power. Our neuron model consists of a two-level system coupled to a Gaussian bath representing the environment. Simulations of a interconnected network of these neurons show that the model can both learn standard AI tasks, as similar networks of classical neurons have been shown to do, and, in addition, perform quantum mechanical calculations.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

    Previous 13C magnetic resonance spectroscopy experiments have shown that over a wide range of neuronal activity, approximately one molecule of glucose is oxidized for every molecule of glutamate released by neurons and recycled through astrocytic glutamine. The measured kinetics were shown to agree with the stoichiometry of a hypothetical astrocyte-to-neuron lactate shuttle model, which predicted negligible functional neuronal uptake of glucose. To test this model, we measured the uptake and phosphorylation of glucose in nerve terminals isolated from rats infused with the glucose analog, 2-fluoro-2-deoxy-d-glucose (FDG) in vivo. The concentrations of phosphorylated FDG (FDG6P), normalized with respect to known neuronal metabolites, were compared in nerve terminals, homogenate, and cortex of anesthetized rats with and without bicuculline-induced seizures. The increase in FDG6P in nerve terminals agreed well with the increase in cortical neuronal glucose oxidation measured previously under the same conditions in vivo, indicating that direct uptake and oxidation of glucose in nerve terminals is substantial under resting and activated conditions. These results suggest that neuronal glucose-derived pyruvate is the major oxidative fuel for activated neurons, not lactate-derived from astrocytes, contradicting predictions of the original astrocyte-to-neuron lactate shuttle model under the range of study conditions. PMID:24706914

  7. Neural substrates underlying intentional empathy

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Gang; Yang, Xuedong; Wang, Xiaoying; Northoff, Georg; Han, Shihui

    2012-01-01

    Although empathic responses to stimuli with emotional contents may occur automatically, humans are capable to intentionally empathize with other individuals. Intentional empathy for others is even possible when they do not show emotional expressions. However, little is known about the neuronal mechanisms of this intentionally controlled empathic process. To investigate the neuronal substrates underlying intentional empathy, we scanned 20 healthy Chinese subjects, using fMRI, when they tried to feel inside the emotional states of neutral or angry faces of familiar (Asian) and unfamiliar (Caucasian) models. Skin color evaluation of the same stimuli served as a control task. Compared to a baseline condition, the empathy task revealed a network of established empathy regions, including the anterior cingulate cortex, bilateral inferior frontal cortex and bilateral anterior insula. The contrast of intentional empathy vs skin color evaluation, however, revealed three regions: the bilateral inferior frontal cortex, whose hemodynamic responses were independent of perceived emotion and familiarity and the right-middle temporal gyrus, whose activity was modulated by emotion but not by familiarity. These findings extend our understanding of the role of the inferior frontal cortex and the middle temporal gyrus in empathy by demonstrating their involvement in intentional empathy. PMID:21511824

  8. Transporting mitochondria in neurons

    PubMed Central

    Course, Meredith M.; Wang, Xinnan

    2016-01-01

    Neurons demand vast and vacillating supplies of energy. As the key contributors of this energy, as well as primary pools of calcium and signaling molecules, mitochondria must be where the neuron needs them, when the neuron needs them. The unique architecture and length of neurons, however, make them a complex system for mitochondria to navigate. To add to this difficulty, mitochondria are synthesized mainly in the soma, but must be transported as far as the distant terminals of the neuron. Similarly, damaged mitochondria—which can cause oxidative stress to the neuron—must fuse with healthy mitochondria to repair the damage, return all the way back to the soma for disposal, or be eliminated at the terminals. Increasing evidence suggests that the improper distribution of mitochondria in neurons can lead to neurodegenerative and neuropsychiatric disorders. Here, we will discuss the machinery and regulatory systems used to properly distribute mitochondria in neurons, and how this knowledge has been leveraged to better understand neurological dysfunction. PMID:27508065

  9. How microglia kill neurons.

    PubMed

    Brown, Guy C; Vilalta, Anna

    2015-12-01

    Microglia are resident brain macrophages that become inflammatory activated in most brain pathologies. Microglia normally protect neurons, but may accidentally kill neurons when attempting to limit infections or damage, and this may be more common with degenerative disease as there was no significant selection pressure on the aged brain in the past. A number of mechanisms by which activated microglia kill neurons have been identified, including: (i) stimulation of the phagocyte NADPH oxidase (PHOX) to produce superoxide and derivative oxidants, (ii) expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) producing NO and derivative oxidants, (iii) release of glutamate and glutaminase, (iv) release of TNFα, (v) release of cathepsin B, (vi) phagocytosis of stressed neurons, and (vii) decreased release of nutritive BDNF and IGF-1. PHOX stimulation contributes to microglial activation, but is not directly neurotoxic unless NO is present. NO is normally neuroprotective, but can react with superoxide to produce neurotoxic peroxynitrite, or in the presence of hypoxia inhibit mitochondrial respiration. Glutamate can be released by glia or neurons, but is neurotoxic only if the neurons are depolarised, for example as a result of mitochondrial inhibition. TNFα is normally neuroprotective, but can become toxic if caspase-8 or NF-κB activation are inhibited. If the above mechanisms do not kill neurons, they may still stress the neurons sufficiently to make them susceptible to phagocytosis by activated microglia. We review here whether microglial killing of neurons is an artefact, makes evolutionary sense or contributes in common neuropathologies and by what mechanisms. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled SI: Neuroprotection. PMID:26341532

  10. Morphology and Intrinsic Excitability of Regenerating Sensory and Motor Neurons Grown on a Line Micropattern

    PubMed Central

    Benzina, Ouafa; Cloitre, Thierry; Martin, Marta; Raoul, Cédric; Gergely, Csilla; Scamps, Frédérique

    2014-01-01

    Axonal regeneration is one of the greatest challenges in severe injuries of peripheral nerve. To provide the bridge needed for regeneration, biological or synthetic tubular nerve constructs with aligned architecture have been developed. A key point for improving axonal regeneration is assessing the effects of substrate geometry on neuronal behavior. In the present study, we used an extracellular matrix-micropatterned substrate comprising 3 µm wide lines aimed to physically mimic the in vivo longitudinal axonal growth of mice peripheral sensory and motor neurons. Adult sensory neurons or embryonic motoneurons were seeded and processed for morphological and electrical activity analyses after two days in vitro. We show that micropattern-guided sensory neurons grow one or two axons without secondary branching. Motoneurons polarity was kept on micropattern with a long axon and small dendrites. The micro-patterned substrate maintains the growth promoting effects of conditioning injury and demonstrates, for the first time, that neurite initiation and extension could be differentially regulated by conditioning injury among DRG sensory neuron subpopulations. The micro-patterned substrate impacts the excitability of sensory neurons and promotes the apparition of firing action potentials characteristic for a subclass of mechanosensitive neurons. The line pattern is quite relevant for assessing the regenerative and developmental growth of sensory and motoneurons and offers a unique model for the analysis of the impact of geometry on the expression and the activity of mechanosensitive channels in DRG sensory neurons. PMID:25329060

  11. Signal Propagation between Neuronal Populations Controlled by Micropatterning

    PubMed Central

    Albers, Jonas; Offenhäusser, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    The central nervous system consists of an unfathomable number of functional networks enabling highly sophisticated information processing. Guided neuronal growth with a well-defined connectivity and accompanying polarity is essential for the formation of these networks. To investigate how two-dimensional protein patterns influence neuronal outgrowth with respect to connectivity and functional polarity between adjacent populations of neurons, a microstructured model system was established. Exclusive cell growth on patterned substrates was achieved by transferring a mixture of poly-l-lysine and laminin to a cell-repellent glass surface by microcontact printing. Triangular structures with different opening angle, height, and width were chosen as a pattern to achieve network formation with defined behavior at the junction of adjacent structures. These patterns were populated with dissociated primary cortical embryonic rat neurons and investigated with respect to their impact on neuronal outgrowth by immunofluorescence analysis, as well as their functional connectivity by calcium imaging. Here, we present a highly reproducible technique to devise neuronal networks in vitro with a predefined connectivity induced by the design of the gateway. Daisy-chained neuronal networks with predefined connectivity and functional polarity were produced using the presented micropatterning method. Controlling the direction of signal propagation among populations of neurons provides insights to network communication and offers the chance to investigate more about learning processes in networks by external manipulation of cells and signal cascades. PMID:27379230

  12. Signal Propagation between Neuronal Populations Controlled by Micropatterning.

    PubMed

    Albers, Jonas; Offenhäusser, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    The central nervous system consists of an unfathomable number of functional networks enabling highly sophisticated information processing. Guided neuronal growth with a well-defined connectivity and accompanying polarity is essential for the formation of these networks. To investigate how two-dimensional protein patterns influence neuronal outgrowth with respect to connectivity and functional polarity between adjacent populations of neurons, a microstructured model system was established. Exclusive cell growth on patterned substrates was achieved by transferring a mixture of poly-l-lysine and laminin to a cell-repellent glass surface by microcontact printing. Triangular structures with different opening angle, height, and width were chosen as a pattern to achieve network formation with defined behavior at the junction of adjacent structures. These patterns were populated with dissociated primary cortical embryonic rat neurons and investigated with respect to their impact on neuronal outgrowth by immunofluorescence analysis, as well as their functional connectivity by calcium imaging. Here, we present a highly reproducible technique to devise neuronal networks in vitro with a predefined connectivity induced by the design of the gateway. Daisy-chained neuronal networks with predefined connectivity and functional polarity were produced using the presented micropatterning method. Controlling the direction of signal propagation among populations of neurons provides insights to network communication and offers the chance to investigate more about learning processes in networks by external manipulation of cells and signal cascades. PMID:27379230

  13. Neuronal Functions of ESCRTs

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Fen-Biao

    2012-01-01

    The endosomal sorting complexes required for transport (ESCRTs) regulate protein trafficking from endosomes to lysosomes. Recent studies have shown that ESCRTs are involved in various cellular processes, including membrane scission, microRNA function, viral budding, and the autophagy pathway in many tissues, including the nervous system. Indeed, dysfunctional ESCRTs are associated with neurodegeneration. However, it remains largely elusive how ESCRTs act in post-mitotic neurons, a highly specialized cell type that requires dynamic changes in neuronal structures and signaling for proper function. This review focuses on our current understandings of the functions of ESCRTs in neuronal morphology, synaptic plasticity, and neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:22438674

  14. Ribbed electrode substrates

    DOEpatents

    Breault, Richard D.; Goller, Glen J.

    1983-01-01

    A ribbed substrate for an electrochemical cell electrode is made from a mixture of carbon fibers and carbonizable resin and has a mean pore size in the ribs which is 60-75% of the mean pore size of the web portions of the substrate which interconnect the ribs. Preferably the mean pore size of the web portion is 25-45 microns; and, if the substrate includes edge seals parallel to the ribs, the edge seals preferably have a mean pore size no greater than about ten microns. Most preferably the substrate has the same ratio of carbon fibers to polymeric carbon in all areas, including the ribs, webs, and edge seals. A substrate according to the present invention will have better overall performance than prior art substrates and minimizes the substrate thickness required for the substrate to perform all its functions well.

  15. Coated substrates and process

    DOEpatents

    Chu, Wei-kan; Childs, Charles B.

    1991-01-01

    Disclosed herein is a coated substrate and a process for forming films on substrates and for providing a particularly smooth film on a substrate. The method of this invention involves subjecting a surface of a substrate to contact with a stream of ions of an inert gas having sufficient force and energy to substantially change the surface characteristics of said substrate, and then exposing a film-forming material to a stream of ions of an inert gas having sufficient energy to vaporize the atoms of said film-forming material and to transmit the vaporized atoms to the substrate surface with sufficient force to form a film bonded to the substrate. This process is particularly useful commercially because it forms strong bonds at room temperature. This invention is particularly useful for adhering a gold film to diamond and forming ohmic electrodes on diamond, but also can be used to bond other films to substrates.

  16. Growth of primary motor neurons on horizontally aligned carbon nanotube thin films and striped patterns

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roberts, Megan J.; Leach, Michelle K.; Bedewy, Mostafa; Meshot, Eric R.; Copic, Davor; Corey, Joseph M.; Hart, A. John

    2014-06-01

    Objective. Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are attractive for use in peripheral nerve interfaces because of their unique combination of strength, flexibility, electrical conductivity and nanoscale surface texture. Here we investigated the growth of motor neurons on thin films of horizontally aligned CNTs (HACNTs). Approach. We cultured primary embryonic rat motor neurons on HACNTs and performed statistical analysis of the length and orientation of neurites. We next presented motor neurons with substrates of alternating stripes of HACNTs and SiO2. Main results. The neurons survived on HACNT substrates for up to eight days, which was the full duration of our experiments. Statistical analysis of the length and orientation of neurites indicated that the longest neurites on HACNTs tended to align with the CNT direction, although the average neurite length was similar between HACNTs and glass control substrates. We observed that when motor neurons were presented with alternating stripes of HACNTs and SiO2, the proportion of neurons on HACNTs increases over time, suggesting that neurons selectively migrate toward and adhere to the HACNT surface. Significance. The behavior of motor neurons on CNTs has not been previously investigated, and we show that aligned CNTs could provide a viable interface material to motor neurons. Combined with emerging techniques to build complex hierarchical structures of CNTs, our results suggest that organised CNTs could be incorporated into nerve grafts that use physical and electrical cues to guide regenerating axons.

  17. Neuronal polarity selection by topography-induced focal adhesion control.

    PubMed

    Ferrari, Aldo; Cecchini, Marco; Serresi, Michela; Faraci, Paolo; Pisignano, Dario; Beltram, Fabio

    2010-06-01

    Interaction between differentiating neurons and the extracellular environment guides the establishment of cell polarity during nervous system development. Developing neurons read the physical properties of the local substrate in a contact-dependent manner and retrieve essential guidance cues. In previous works we demonstrated that PC12 cell interaction with nanogratings (alternating lines of ridges and grooves of submicron size) promotes bipolarity and alignment to the substrate topography. Here, we investigate the role of focal adhesions, cell contractility, and actin dynamics in this process. Exploiting nanoimprint lithography techniques and a cyclic olefin copolymer, we engineered biocompatible nanostructured substrates designed for high-resolution live-cell microscopy. Our results reveal that neuronal polarization and contact guidance are based on a geometrical constraint of focal adhesions resulting in an angular modulation of their maturation and persistence. We report on ROCK1/2-myosin-II pathway activity and demonstrate that ROCK-mediated contractility contributes to polarity selection during neuronal differentiation. Importantly, the selection process confined the generation of actin-supported membrane protrusions and the initiation of new neurites at the poles. Maintenance of the established polarity was independent from NGF stimulation. Altogether our results imply that focal adhesions and cell contractility stably link the topographical configuration of the extracellular environment to a corresponding neuronal polarity state. PMID:20304485

  18. Polished polymide substrate

    DOEpatents

    Farah, John; Sudarshanam, Venkatapuram S.

    2003-05-13

    Polymer substrates, in particular polyimide substrates, and polymer laminates for optical applications are described. Polyimide substrates are polished on one or both sides depending on their thickness, and single-layer or multi-layer waveguide structures are deposited on the polished polyimide substrates. Optical waveguide devices are machined by laser ablation using a combination of IR and UV lasers. A waveguide-fiber coupler with a laser-machined groove for retaining the fiber is also disclosed.

  19. Recovery of EUVL substrates

    SciTech Connect

    Vernon, S.P.; Baker, S.L.

    1995-01-19

    Mo/Si multilayers, were removed from superpolished zerodur and fused silica substrates with a dry etching process that, under suitable processing conditions, produces negligible change in either the substrate surface figure or surface roughness. Full recovery of the initial normal incidence extreme ultra-violet (EUV) reflectance response has been demonstrated on reprocessed substrates.

  20. Neuromorphic silicon neuron circuits.

    PubMed

    Indiveri, Giacomo; Linares-Barranco, Bernabé; Hamilton, Tara Julia; van Schaik, André; Etienne-Cummings, Ralph; Delbruck, Tobi; Liu, Shih-Chii; Dudek, Piotr; Häfliger, Philipp; Renaud, Sylvie; Schemmel, Johannes; Cauwenberghs, Gert; Arthur, John; Hynna, Kai; Folowosele, Fopefolu; Saighi, Sylvain; Serrano-Gotarredona, Teresa; Wijekoon, Jayawan; Wang, Yingxue; Boahen, Kwabena

    2011-01-01

    Hardware implementations of spiking neurons can be extremely useful for a large variety of applications, ranging from high-speed modeling of large-scale neural systems to real-time behaving systems, to bidirectional brain-machine interfaces. The specific circuit solutions used to implement silicon neurons depend on the application requirements. In this paper we describe the most common building blocks and techniques used to implement these circuits, and present an overview of a wide range of neuromorphic silicon neurons, which implement different computational models, ranging from biophysically realistic and conductance-based Hodgkin-Huxley models to bi-dimensional generalized adaptive integrate and fire models. We compare the different design methodologies used for each silicon neuron design described, and demonstrate their features with experimental results, measured from a wide range of fabricated VLSI chips. PMID:21747754

  1. Neuronal ubiquitin homeostasis

    PubMed Central

    Hallengren, Jada; Chen, Ping-Chung; Wilson, Scott M.

    2013-01-01

    Neurons have highly specialized intracellular compartments that facilitate the development and activity of the nervous system. Ubiquitination is a post-translational modification that controls many aspects of neuronal function by regulating protein abundance. Disruption of this signaling pathway has been demonstrated in neurological disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and Angleman Syndrome. Since many neurological disorders exhibit ubiquitinated protein aggregates, the loss of neuronal ubiquitin homeostasis may be an important contributor of disease. This review discusses the mechanisms utilized by neurons to control the free pool of ubiquitin necessary for normal nervous system development and function as well as new roles of protein ubiquitination in regulating synaptic activity. PMID:23686613

  2. Neuromorphic Silicon Neuron Circuits

    PubMed Central

    Indiveri, Giacomo; Linares-Barranco, Bernabé; Hamilton, Tara Julia; van Schaik, André; Etienne-Cummings, Ralph; Delbruck, Tobi; Liu, Shih-Chii; Dudek, Piotr; Häfliger, Philipp; Renaud, Sylvie; Schemmel, Johannes; Cauwenberghs, Gert; Arthur, John; Hynna, Kai; Folowosele, Fopefolu; Saighi, Sylvain; Serrano-Gotarredona, Teresa; Wijekoon, Jayawan; Wang, Yingxue; Boahen, Kwabena

    2011-01-01

    Hardware implementations of spiking neurons can be extremely useful for a large variety of applications, ranging from high-speed modeling of large-scale neural systems to real-time behaving systems, to bidirectional brain–machine interfaces. The specific circuit solutions used to implement silicon neurons depend on the application requirements. In this paper we describe the most common building blocks and techniques used to implement these circuits, and present an overview of a wide range of neuromorphic silicon neurons, which implement different computational models, ranging from biophysically realistic and conductance-based Hodgkin–Huxley models to bi-dimensional generalized adaptive integrate and fire models. We compare the different design methodologies used for each silicon neuron design described, and demonstrate their features with experimental results, measured from a wide range of fabricated VLSI chips. PMID:21747754

  3. Cellular Links between Neuronal Activity and Energy Homeostasis

    PubMed Central

    Shetty, Pavan K.; Galeffi, Francesca; Turner, Dennis A.

    2012-01-01

    Neuronal activity, astrocytic responses to this activity, and energy homeostasis are linked together during baseline, conscious conditions, and short-term rapid activation (as occurs with sensory or motor function). Nervous system energy homeostasis also varies during long-term physiological conditions (i.e., development and aging) and with adaptation to pathological conditions, such as ischemia or low glucose. Neuronal activation requires increased metabolism (i.e., ATP generation) which leads initially to substrate depletion, induction of a variety of signals for enhanced astrocytic function, and increased local blood flow and substrate delivery. Energy generation (particularly in mitochondria) and use during ATP hydrolysis also lead to considerable heat generation. The local increases in blood flow noted following neuronal activation can both enhance local substrate delivery but also provides a heat sink to help cool the brain and removal of waste by-products. In this review we highlight the interactions between short-term neuronal activity and energy metabolism with an emphasis on signals and factors regulating astrocyte function and substrate supply. PMID:22470340

  4. Competing dopamine neurons drive oviposition choice for ethanol in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Azanchi, Reza; Kaun, Karla R; Heberlein, Ulrike

    2013-12-24

    The neural circuits that mediate behavioral choice evaluate and integrate information from the environment with internal demands and then initiate a behavioral response. Even circuits that support simple decisions remain poorly understood. In Drosophila melanogaster, oviposition on a substrate containing ethanol enhances fitness; however, little is known about the neural mechanisms mediating this important choice behavior. Here, we characterize the neural modulation of this simple choice and show that distinct subsets of dopaminergic neurons compete to either enhance or inhibit egg-laying preference for ethanol-containing food. Moreover, activity in α'β' neurons of the mushroom body and a subset of ellipsoid body ring neurons (R2) is required for this choice. We propose a model where competing dopaminergic systems modulate oviposition preference to adjust to changes in natural oviposition substrates. PMID:24324162

  5. Superoxide dismutase protects cultured neurons against death by starvation.

    PubMed Central

    Sáez, J C; Kessler, J A; Bennett, M V; Spray, D C

    1987-01-01

    Brief substrate deprivation resulted in high mortality of superior cervical ganglion neurons in culture, assayed 2 hr later by trypan blue exclusion. Involvement of superoxide anions was indicated by several observations. Survival was increased significantly by prior treatment that induced cells to take up superoxide dismutase. During starvation, neurons reduced nitroblue tetrazolium to form the blue precipitate formazan, and the color change was blocked in neurons preloaded with superoxide dismutase. The incidence of staining was comparable to the mortality. In many cells, brief starvation caused the appearance of fluorescence due to oxidation of 2',7'-dichlorofluorescin to dichlorofluorescein, which indicates that oxidants were generated intracellularly. In some cells fluorescence was transient, as would be caused by membrane breakdown, and these cells were then shown to be dead. Superoxide generation caused by substrate deprivation may contribute importantly to cell damage in a variety of pathological conditions. Images PMID:3472251

  6. NeuronBank: A Tool for Cataloging Neuronal Circuitry

    PubMed Central

    Katz, Paul S.; Calin-Jageman, Robert; Dhawan, Akshaye; Frederick, Chad; Guo, Shuman; Dissanayaka, Rasanjalee; Hiremath, Naveen; Ma, Wenjun; Shen, Xiuyn; Wang, Hsui C.; Yang, Hong; Prasad, Sushil; Sunderraman, Rajshekhar; Zhu, Ying

    2010-01-01

    The basic unit of any nervous system is the neuron. Therefore, understanding the operation of nervous systems ultimately requires an inventory of their constituent neurons and synaptic connectivity, which form neural circuits. The presence of uniquely identifiable neurons or classes of neurons in many invertebrates has facilitated the construction of cellular-level connectivity diagrams that can be generalized across individuals within a species. Homologous neurons can also be recognized across species. Here we describe NeuronBank.org, a web-based tool that we are developing for cataloging, searching, and analyzing neuronal circuitry within and across species. Information from a single species is represented in an individual branch of NeuronBank. Users can search within a branch or perform queries across branches to look for similarities in neuronal circuits across species. The branches allow for an extensible ontology so that additional characteristics can be added as knowledge grows. Each entry in NeuronBank generates a unique accession ID, allowing it to be easily cited. There is also an automatic link to a Wiki page allowing an encyclopedic explanation of the entry. All of the 44 previously published neurons plus one previously unpublished neuron from the mollusc, Tritonia diomedea, have been entered into a branch of NeuronBank as have 4 previously published neurons from the mollusc, Melibe leonina. The ability to organize information about neuronal circuits will make this information more accessible, ultimately aiding research on these important models. PMID:20428500

  7. Corrosion resistant PEM fuel cell

    DOEpatents

    Fronk, Matthew Howard; Borup, Rodney Lynn; Hulett, Jay S.; Brady, Brian K.; Cunningham, Kevin M.

    2002-01-01

    A PEM fuel cell having electrical contact elements comprising a corrosion-susceptible substrate metal coated with an electrically conductive, corrosion-resistant polymer containing a plurality of electrically conductive, corrosion-resistant filler particles. The substrate may have an oxidizable metal first layer (e.g., stainless steel) underlying the polymer coating.

  8. Corrosion resistant PEM fuel cell

    DOEpatents

    Fronk, Matthew Howard; Borup, Rodney Lynn; Hulett, Jay S.; Brady, Brian K. NY); Cunningham, Kevin M.

    2011-06-07

    A PEM fuel cell having electrical contact elements comprising a corrosion-susceptible substrate metal coated with an electrically conductive, corrosion-resistant polymer containing a plurality of electrically conductive, corrosion-resistant filler particles. The substrate may have an oxidizable metal first layer (e.g., stainless steel) underlying the polymer coating.

  9. Physical and Biological Regulation of Neuron Regenerative Growth and Network Formation on Recombinant Dragline Silks

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Wenwen; He, Jiuyang; Jones, Justin; Lewis, Randolph V.; Kaplan, David L.

    2015-01-01

    Recombinant spider silks produced in transgenic goat milk were studied as cell culture matrices for neuronal growth. Major ampullate spidroin 1 (MaSp1) supported neuronal growth, axon extension and network connectivity, with cell morphology comparable to the gold standard poly-lysine. In addition, neurons growing on MaSp1 films had increased neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM) expression at both mRNA and protein levels. The results indicate that MaSp1 films present useful surface charge and substrate stiffness to support the growth of primary rat cortical neurons. Moreover, a putative neuron-specific surface binding sequence GRGGL within MaSp1 may contribute to the biological regulation of neuron growth. These findings indicate that MaSp1 could regulate neuron growth through its physical and biological features. This dual regulation mode of MaSp1 could provide an alternative strategy for generating functional silk materials for neural tissue engineering. PMID:25701039

  10. Representation of retrieval confidence by single neurons in the human medial temporal lobe

    PubMed Central

    Rutishauser, Ueli; Ye, Shengxuan; Koroma, Matthieu; Tudusciuc, Oana; Ross, Ian B.; Chung, Jeffrey M.; Mamelak, Adam N.

    2015-01-01

    Memory-based decisions are often accompanied by an assessment of choice certainty, but the mechanisms of such confidence judgments remain unknown. We studied the response of 1065 individual neurons in the human hippocampus and amygdala while neurosurgical patients made memory retrieval decisions together with a confidence judgment. Combining behavioral, neuronal and computational analysis, we identified a population of memory-selective (MS) neurons whose activity signaled stimulus familiarity and confidence as assessed by subjective report. In contrast, the activity of visually selective (VS) neurons was not sensitive to memory strength. The groups further differed in response latency, tuning, and extracellular waveforms. The information provided by MS neurons was sufficient for a race model to decide stimulus familiarity and retrieval confidence. Together, this demonstrates a trial-by-trial relationship between a specific group of neurons and declared memory strength in humans. We suggest that VS and MS neurons are a substrate for declarative memories. PMID:26053402

  11. Cell-Type Dependent Effect of Surface-Patterned Microdot Arrays on Neuronal Growth

    PubMed Central

    Jang, Min Jee; Kim, Woon Ryoung; Joo, Sunghoon; Ryu, Jae Ryun; Lee, Eunsoo; Nam, Yoonkey; Sun, Woong

    2016-01-01

    Surface micropatterns have been widely used as chemical cues to control the microenvironment of cultured neurons, particularly for neurobiological assays and neurochip designs. However, the cell-type dependency on the interactions between neurons and underlying micropatterns has been rarely investigated despite the inherent differences in the morphology of neuronal types. In this study, we used surface-printed microdot arrays to investigate the effect of the same micropatterns on the growth of mouse spinal interneuron, mouse hippocampal neurons, and rat hippocampal neurons. While mouse hippocampal neurons showed no significantly different growth on control and patterned substrates, we found the microdot arrays had different effects on early neuronal growth depending on the cell type; spinal interneurons tended to grow faster in length, whereas hippocampal neurons tended to form more axon collateral branches in response to the microdot arrays. Although there was a similar trend in the neurite length and branch number of both neurons changed across the microdot arrays with the expanded range of size and spacing, the dominant responses of each neuron, neurite elongation of mouse spinal interneurons and branching augmentation of rat hippocampal neurons were still preserved. Therefore, our results demonstrate that the same design of micropatterns could cause different neuronal growth results, raising an intriguing issue of considering cell types in neural interface designs. PMID:27242421

  12. Cell-Type Dependent Effect of Surface-Patterned Microdot Arrays on Neuronal Growth.

    PubMed

    Jang, Min Jee; Kim, Woon Ryoung; Joo, Sunghoon; Ryu, Jae Ryun; Lee, Eunsoo; Nam, Yoonkey; Sun, Woong

    2016-01-01

    Surface micropatterns have been widely used as chemical cues to control the microenvironment of cultured neurons, particularly for neurobiological assays and neurochip designs. However, the cell-type dependency on the interactions between neurons and underlying micropatterns has been rarely investigated despite the inherent differences in the morphology of neuronal types. In this study, we used surface-printed microdot arrays to investigate the effect of the same micropatterns on the growth of mouse spinal interneuron, mouse hippocampal neurons, and rat hippocampal neurons. While mouse hippocampal neurons showed no significantly different growth on control and patterned substrates, we found the microdot arrays had different effects on early neuronal growth depending on the cell type; spinal interneurons tended to grow faster in length, whereas hippocampal neurons tended to form more axon collateral branches in response to the microdot arrays. Although there was a similar trend in the neurite length and branch number of both neurons changed across the microdot arrays with the expanded range of size and spacing, the dominant responses of each neuron, neurite elongation of mouse spinal interneurons and branching augmentation of rat hippocampal neurons were still preserved. Therefore, our results demonstrate that the same design of micropatterns could cause different neuronal growth results, raising an intriguing issue of considering cell types in neural interface designs. PMID:27242421

  13. Neuronal avalanches and learning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de Arcangelis, Lucilla

    2011-05-01

    Networks of living neurons represent one of the most fascinating systems of biology. If the physical and chemical mechanisms at the basis of the functioning of a single neuron are quite well understood, the collective behaviour of a system of many neurons is an extremely intriguing subject. Crucial ingredient of this complex behaviour is the plasticity property of the network, namely the capacity to adapt and evolve depending on the level of activity. This plastic ability is believed, nowadays, to be at the basis of learning and memory in real brains. Spontaneous neuronal activity has recently shown features in common to other complex systems. Experimental data have, in fact, shown that electrical information propagates in a cortex slice via an avalanche mode. These avalanches are characterized by a power law distribution for the size and duration, features found in other problems in the context of the physics of complex systems and successful models have been developed to describe their behaviour. In this contribution we discuss a statistical mechanical model for the complex activity in a neuronal network. The model implements the main physiological properties of living neurons and is able to reproduce recent experimental results. Then, we discuss the learning abilities of this neuronal network. Learning occurs via plastic adaptation of synaptic strengths by a non-uniform negative feedback mechanism. The system is able to learn all the tested rules, in particular the exclusive OR (XOR) and a random rule with three inputs. The learning dynamics exhibits universal features as function of the strength of plastic adaptation. Any rule could be learned provided that the plastic adaptation is sufficiently slow.

  14. SV2 mediates entry of tetanus neurotoxin into central neurons.

    PubMed

    Yeh, Felix L; Dong, Min; Yao, Jun; Tepp, William H; Lin, Guangyun; Johnson, Eric A; Chapman, Edwin R

    2010-01-01

    Tetanus neurotoxin causes the disease tetanus, which is characterized by rigid paralysis. The toxin acts by inhibiting the release of neurotransmitters from inhibitory neurons in the spinal cord that innervate motor neurons and is unique among the clostridial neurotoxins due to its ability to shuttle from the periphery to the central nervous system. Tetanus neurotoxin is thought to interact with a high affinity receptor complex that is composed of lipid and protein components; however, the identity of the protein receptor remains elusive. In the current study, we demonstrate that toxin binding, to dissociated hippocampal and spinal cord neurons, is greatly enhanced by driving synaptic vesicle exocytosis. Moreover, tetanus neurotoxin entry and subsequent cleavage of synaptobrevin II, the substrate for this toxin, was also dependent on synaptic vesicle recycling. Next, we identified the potential synaptic vesicle binding protein for the toxin and found that it corresponded to SV2; tetanus neurotoxin was unable to cleave synaptobrevin II in SV2 knockout neurons. Toxin entry into knockout neurons was rescued by infecting with viruses that express SV2A or SV2B. Tetanus toxin elicited the hyper excitability in dissociated spinal cord neurons - due to preferential loss of inhibitory transmission - that is characteristic of the disease. Surprisingly, in dissociated cortical cultures, low concentrations of the toxin preferentially acted on excitatory neurons. Further examination of the distribution of SV2A and SV2B in both spinal cord and cortical neurons revealed that SV2B is to a large extent localized to excitatory terminals, while SV2A is localized to inhibitory terminals. Therefore, the distinct effects of tetanus toxin on cortical and spinal cord neurons are not due to differential expression of SV2 isoforms. In summary, the findings reported here indicate that SV2A and SV2B mediate binding and entry of tetanus neurotoxin into central neurons. PMID:21124874

  15. Somatosensory Substrates of Flight Control in Bats

    PubMed Central

    Marshall, Kara L.; Chadha, Mohit; deSouza, Laura A.; Sterbing-D’Angelo, Susanne J.; Moss, Cynthia F.; Lumpkin, Ellen A.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Flight maneuvers require rapid sensory integration to generate adaptive motor output. Bats achieve remarkable agility with modified forelimbs that serve as airfoils while retaining capacity for object manipulation. Wing sensory inputs provide behaviorally relevant information to guide flight; however, components of wing sensory-motor circuits have not been analyzed. Here, we elucidate the organization of wing innervation in an insectivore, the big brown bat, Eptesicus fuscus. We demonstrate that wing sensory innervation differs from other vertebrate forelimbs, revealing a peripheral basis for the atypical topographic organization reported for bat somatosensory nuclei. Furthermore, the wing is innervated by an unusual complement of sensory neurons poised to report airflow and touch. Finally, we report that cortical neurons encode tactile and airflow inputs with sparse activity patterns. Together, our findings identify neural substrates of somatosensation in the bat wing and imply that evolutionary pressures giving rise to mammalian flight led to unusual sensorimotor projections. PMID:25937277

  16. Multistructural biomimetic substrates for controlled cellular differentiation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Orza, Anamaria I.; Mihu, Carmen; Soritau, Olga; Diudea, Mircea; Florea, Adrian; Matei, Horea; Balici, Stefana; Mudalige, Thilak; Kanarpardy, Ganesh K.; Biris, Alexandru S.

    2014-02-01

    Multidimensional scaffolds are considered to be ideal candidates for regenerative medicine and tissue engineering based on their potential to provide an excellent microenvironment and direct the fate of the cultured cells. More recently, the use of stem cells in medicine has opened a new technological opportunity for controlled tissue formation. However, the mechanism through which the substrate directs the differentiation of stem cells is still rather unclear. Data concerning its specific surface chemistry, topology, and its signaling ability need to be further understood and analyzed. In our study, atomic force microscopy was used to study the stiffness, roughness, and topology of the collagen (Coll) and metallized collagen (MC) substrates, proposed as an excellent substrate for regenerative medicine. The importance of signaling molecules was studied by constructing a new hybrid signaling substrate that contains both collagen and laminin extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins. The cellular response—such as attachment capability, proliferation and cardiac and neuronal phenotype expression on the metallized and non-metallized hybrid substrates (collagen + laminin)—was studied using MTT viability assay and immunohistochemistry studies. Our findings indicate that such hybrid materials could play an important role in the regeneration of complex tissues.

  17. Neurite outgrowth and synapse formation by identified leech neurones in culture.

    PubMed

    Chiquet, M; Nicholls, J G

    1987-09-01

    After injury, neurones in the central nervous system (CNS) of the leech regenerate with a high degree of specificity. The aim of our experiments has been to study the sequential steps involved in neurite growth and synapse formation using isolated identified neurones in culture. An important requirement for sprouting of leech neurones is the substrate. Neurites grow only slowly and sparsely on polylysine or vertebrate laminin. The extracellular matrix of leech ganglion capsules contains a protease-sensitive factor which can be extracted with urea. With this material as substrate, growth proceeds rapidly in defined medium. Another neurite-promoting substrate is provided by the plant lectin concanavalin A (Con A). The activity of Con A, but not of the capsule matrix factor, is blocked by the Con A-specific hapten methyl alpha-D-mannoside. The morphology and branching pattern of the neurites in culture depend on the specific substrate and on the type of neurone. During stimulation, less Ca2+ uptake occurs into growth cones than in cell bodies. The mechanism of neurite growth seems not to depend on activity-mediated Ca2+ influx or on interactions between neuronal cell surfaces. However, even without profuse outgrowth, electrical and chemical synapses develop between neighbouring neurones. The type of synapse depends predictably on the types of neurones within the cell pair. Since the development of a synapse can be followed with time in culture, the sequential events can each be studied separately for this multi-step process. PMID:3323399

  18. The role of dimensionality in neuronal network dynamics.

    PubMed

    Ulloa Severino, Francesco Paolo; Ban, Jelena; Song, Qin; Tang, Mingliang; Bianconi, Ginestra; Cheng, Guosheng; Torre, Vincent

    2016-01-01

    Recent results from network theory show that complexity affects several dynamical properties of networks that favor synchronization. Here we show that synchronization in 2D and 3D neuronal networks is significantly different. Using dissociated hippocampal neurons we compared properties of cultures grown on a flat 2D substrates with those formed on 3D graphene foam scaffolds. Both 2D and 3D cultures had comparable glia to neuron ratio and the percentage of GABAergic inhibitory neurons. 3D cultures because of their dimension have many connections among distant neurons leading to small-world networks and their characteristic dynamics. After one week, calcium imaging revealed moderately synchronous activity in 2D networks, but the degree of synchrony of 3D networks was higher and had two regimes: a highly synchronized (HS) and a moderately synchronized (MS) regime. The HS regime was never observed in 2D networks. During the MS regime, neuronal assemblies in synchrony changed with time as observed in mammalian brains. After two weeks, the degree of synchrony in 3D networks decreased, as observed in vivo. These results show that dimensionality determines properties of neuronal networks and that several features of brain dynamics are a consequence of its 3D topology. PMID:27404281

  19. The role of dimensionality in neuronal network dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Ulloa Severino, Francesco Paolo; Ban, Jelena; Song, Qin; Tang, Mingliang; Bianconi, Ginestra; Cheng, Guosheng; Torre, Vincent

    2016-01-01

    Recent results from network theory show that complexity affects several dynamical properties of networks that favor synchronization. Here we show that synchronization in 2D and 3D neuronal networks is significantly different. Using dissociated hippocampal neurons we compared properties of cultures grown on a flat 2D substrates with those formed on 3D graphene foam scaffolds. Both 2D and 3D cultures had comparable glia to neuron ratio and the percentage of GABAergic inhibitory neurons. 3D cultures because of their dimension have many connections among distant neurons leading to small-world networks and their characteristic dynamics. After one week, calcium imaging revealed moderately synchronous activity in 2D networks, but the degree of synchrony of 3D networks was higher and had two regimes: a highly synchronized (HS) and a moderately synchronized (MS) regime. The HS regime was never observed in 2D networks. During the MS regime, neuronal assemblies in synchrony changed with time as observed in mammalian brains. After two weeks, the degree of synchrony in 3D networks decreased, as observed in vivo. These results show that dimensionality determines properties of neuronal networks and that several features of brain dynamics are a consequence of its 3D topology. PMID:27404281

  20. Lactate involvement in neuron-glia metabolic interaction: (13)C-NMR spectroscopy contribution.

    PubMed

    Bouzier-Sore, A-K; Serres, S; Canioni, P; Merle, M

    2003-09-01

    Glucose is commonly admitted to be the main substrate for brain energy requirement. However, it has been recently proposed that lactate, generated from glucose via glycolysis, would be the oxidative substrate for neurons, particularly during neuronal activation, according to a mechanism called the astrocyte-neuron lactate shuttle hypothesis (ANLSH). In that mechanism, glutamate released in the synaptic cleft during brain activation is taken up by astrocytes. This uptake, via the glutamate/Na(+) transporter, induces the entry of sodium, which is then excluded from the astrocytes via the Na(+)/K(+) ATPase. This exclusion consumes ATP, which stimulates glycolysis and thus lactate formation in astrocytes. This lactate is then transferred to neurons where it is utilized as oxidative substrate. This review tries to gather the recent evidences that support this hypothesis and presents the contribution of NMR to this matter. PMID:14652173

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

    Perception of olfactory stimuli is mediated by distinct populations of olfactory sensory neurons, each with a characteristic set of morphological as well as functional parameters. Beyond two large populations of ciliated and microvillous neurons, a third population, crypt neurons, has been identified in teleost and cartilaginous fishes. We report here a novel, fourth olfactory sensory neuron population in zebrafish, which we named kappe neurons for their characteristic shape. Kappe neurons are identified by their Go-like immunoreactivity, and show a distinct spatial distribution within the olfactory epithelium, similar to, but significantly different from that of crypt neurons. Furthermore, kappe neurons project to a single identified target glomerulus within the olfactory bulb, mdg5 of the mediodorsal cluster, whereas crypt neurons are known to project exclusively to the mdg2 glomerulus. Kappe neurons are negative for established markers of ciliated, microvillous and crypt neurons, but appear to have microvilli. Kappe neurons constitute the fourth type of olfactory sensory neurons reported in teleost fishes and their existence suggests that encoding of olfactory stimuli may require a higher complexity than hitherto assumed already in the peripheral olfactory system. PMID:24509431

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2014-02-01

    Perception of olfactory stimuli is mediated by distinct populations of olfactory sensory neurons, each with a characteristic set of morphological as well as functional parameters. Beyond two large populations of ciliated and microvillous neurons, a third population, crypt neurons, has been identified in teleost and cartilaginous fishes. We report here a novel, fourth olfactory sensory neuron population in zebrafish, which we named kappe neurons for their characteristic shape. Kappe neurons are identified by their Go-like immunoreactivity, and show a distinct spatial distribution within the olfactory epithelium, similar to, but significantly different from that of crypt neurons. Furthermore, kappe neurons project to a single identified target glomerulus within the olfactory bulb, mdg5 of the mediodorsal cluster, whereas crypt neurons are known to project exclusively to the mdg2 glomerulus. Kappe neurons are negative for established markers of ciliated, microvillous and crypt neurons, but appear to have microvilli. Kappe neurons constitute the fourth type of olfactory sensory neurons reported in teleost fishes and their existence suggests that encoding of olfactory stimuli may require a higher complexity than hitherto assumed already in the peripheral olfactory system.

  3. Patterned neuronal networks using nanodiamonds and the effect of varying nanodiamond properties on neuronal adhesion and outgrowth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Edgington, R. J.; Thalhammer, A.; Welch, J. O.; Bongrain, A.; Bergonzo, P.; Scorsone, E.; Jackman, R. B.; Schoepfer, R.

    2013-10-01

    Objective. Detonation nanodiamond monolayer coatings are exceptionally biocompatible substrates for in vitro cell culture. However, the ability of nanodiamond coatings of different origin, size, surface chemistry and morphology to promote neuronal adhesion, and the ability to pattern neurons with nanodiamonds have yet to be investigated. Approach. Various nanodiamond coatings of different type are investigated for their ability to promote neuronal adhesion with respect to surface coating parameters and neurite extension. Nanodiamond tracks are patterned using photolithography and reactive ion etching. Main results. Universal promotion of neuronal adhesion is observed on all coatings tested and analysis shows surface roughness to not be a sufficient metric to describe biocompatibility, but instead nanoparticle size and curvature shows a significant correlation with neurite extension. Furthermore, neuronal patterning is achieved with high contrast using patterned nanodiamond coatings down to at least 10 µm. Significance. The results of nanoparticle size and curvature being influential upon neuronal adhesion has great implications towards biomaterial design, and the ability to pattern neurons using nanodiamond tracks shows great promise for applications both in vitro and in vivo.

  4. Imaging voltage in neurons

    PubMed Central

    Peterka, Darcy S.; Takahashi, Hiroto; Yuste, Rafael

    2011-01-01

    In the last decades, imaging membrane potential has become a fruitful approach to study neural circuits, especially in invertebrate preparations with large, resilient neurons. At the same time, particularly in mammalian preparations, voltage imaging methods suffer from poor signal to noise and secondary side effects, and they fall short of providing single-cell resolution when imaging of the activity of neuronal populations. As an introduction to these techniques, we briefly review different voltage imaging methods (including organic fluorophores, SHG chromophores, genetic indicators, hybrid, nanoparticles and intrinsic approaches), and illustrate some of their applications to neuronal biophysics and mammalian circuit analysis. We discuss their mechanisms of voltage sensitivity, from reorientation, electrochromic or electro-optical phenomena, to interaction among chromophores or membrane scattering, and highlight their advantages and shortcomings, commenting on the outlook for development of novel voltage imaging methods. PMID:21220095

  5. Josephson junction simulation of neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crotty, Patrick; Schult, Dan; Segall, Ken

    2010-07-01

    With the goal of understanding the intricate behavior and dynamics of collections of neurons, we present superconducting circuits containing Josephson junctions that model biologically realistic neurons. These “Josephson junction neurons” reproduce many characteristic behaviors of biological neurons such as action potentials, refractory periods, and firing thresholds. They can be coupled together in ways that mimic electrical and chemical synapses. Using existing fabrication technologies, large interconnected networks of Josephson junction neurons would operate fully in parallel. They would be orders of magnitude faster than both traditional computer simulations and biological neural networks. Josephson junction neurons provide a new tool for exploring long-term large-scale dynamics for networks of neurons.

  6. Cold shock induces apoptosis of dorsal root ganglion neurons plated on infrared windows.

    PubMed

    Aboualizadeh, Ebrahim; Mattson, Eric C; O'Hara, Crystal L; Smith, Amanda K; Stucky, Cheryl L; Hirschmugl, Carol J

    2015-06-21

    The chemical status of live sensory neurons is accessible with infrared microspectroscopy of appropriately prepared cells. In this paper, individual dorsal root ganglion (DRG) neurons have been prepared with two different protocols, and plated on glass cover slips, BaF2 and CaF2 substrates. The first protocol exposes the intact DRGs to 4 °C for between 20-30 minutes before dissociating individual neurons and plating 2 hours later. The second protocol maintains the neurons at 23 °C for the entire duration of the sample preparation. The visual appearance of the neurons is similar. The viability was assessed by means of trypan blue exclusion method to determine the viability of the neurons. The neurons prepared under the first protocol (cold exposure) and plated on BaF2 reveal a distinct chemical signature and chemical distribution that is different from the other sample preparations described in the paper. Importantly, results for other sample preparation methods, using various substrates and temperature protocols, when compared across the overlapping spectral bandwidth, present normal chemical distribution within the neurons. The unusual chemically specific spatial variation is dominated by a lack of protein and carbohydrates in the center of the neurons and signatures of unraveling DNA are detected. We suggest that cold shock leads to apoptosis of DRGs, followed by osmotic stress originating from ion gradients across the cell membrane leading to cell lysis. PMID:26000346

  7. Neuroanatomical association of hypothalamic HSD2-containing neurons with ERα, catecholamines, or oxytocin: implications for feeding?

    PubMed Central

    Askew, Maegan L.; Muckelrath, Halie D.; Johnston, Jonathon R.; Curtis, Kathleen S.

    2015-01-01

    This study used immunohistochemical methods to investigate the possibility that hypothalamic neurons that contain 11-β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 2 (HSD2) are involved in the control of feeding by rats via neuroanatomical associations with the α subtype of estrogen receptor (ERα), catecholamines, and/or oxytocin (OT). An aggregate of HSD2-containing neurons is located laterally in the hypothalamus, and the numbers of these neurons were greatly increased by estradiol treatment in ovariectomized (OVX) rats compared to numbers in male rats and in OVX rats that were not given estradiol. However, HSD2-containing neurons were anatomically segregated from ERα-containing neurons in the Ventromedial Hypothalamus and the Arcuate Nucleus. There was an absence of OT-immunolabeled fibers in the area of HSD2-labeled neurons. Taken together, these findings provide no support for direct associations between hypothalamic HSD2 and ERα or OT neurons in the control of feeding. In contrast, there was catecholamine-fiber labeling in the area of HSD2-labeled neurons, and these fibers occasionally were in close apposition to HSD2-labeled neurons. Therefore, we cannot rule out interactions between HSD2 and catecholamines in the control of feeding; however, given the relative sparseness of the appositions, any such interaction would appear to be modest. Thus, these studies do not conclusively identify a neuroanatomical substrate by which HSD2-containing neurons in the hypothalamus may alter feeding, and leave the functional role of hypothalamic HSD2-containing neurons subject to further investigation. PMID:26124709

  8. Fossil fuels -- future fuels

    SciTech Connect

    1998-03-01

    Fossil fuels -- coal, oil, and natural gas -- built America`s historic economic strength. Today, coal supplies more than 55% of the electricity, oil more than 97% of the transportation needs, and natural gas 24% of the primary energy used in the US. Even taking into account increased use of renewable fuels and vastly improved powerplant efficiencies, 90% of national energy needs will still be met by fossil fuels in 2020. If advanced technologies that boost efficiency and environmental performance can be successfully developed and deployed, the US can continue to depend upon its rich resources of fossil fuels.

  9. Neuronal porosome lipidome

    PubMed Central

    Lewis, Kenneth T; Maddipati, Krishna R; Taatjes, Douglas J; Jena, Bhanu P

    2014-01-01

    Cup-shaped lipoprotein structures called porosomes are the universal secretory portals at the cell plasma membrane, where secretory vesicles transiently dock and fuse to release intravesicular contents. In neurons, porosomes measure ∼15 nm and are comprised of nearly 40 proteins, among them SNAREs, ion channels, the Gαo G-protein and several structural proteins. Earlier studies report the interaction of specific lipids and their influence on SNAREs, ion channels and G-protein function. Our own studies demonstrate the requirement of cholesterol for the maintenance of neuronal porosome integrity, and the influence of lipids on SNARE complex assembly. In this study, to further understand the role of lipids on porosome structure-function, the lipid composition of isolated neuronal porosome was determined using mass spectrometry. Using lipid-binding assays, the affinity of porosome-associated syntaxin-1A to various lipids was determined. Our mass spectrometry results demonstrate the presence of phosphatidylinositol phosphates (PIP's) and phosphatidic acid (PA) among other lipids, and the enriched presence of ceramide (Cer), lysophosphatidylinositol phosphates (LPIP) and diacylglycerol (DAG). Lipid binding assays demonstrate the binding of neuronal porosome to cardiolipin, and confirm its association with PIP's and PA. The ability of exogenous PA to alter protein–protein interaction and neurotransmitter release is further demonstrated from the study. PMID:25224862

  10. Nanoresolution radiology of neurons

    SciTech Connect

    Wu, H.R.; Chen, S.T.; Chu, Y.S.; Conley, R.; Bouet, N.; Chien, C.C.; Chen, H.H.; Lin, C.H.; Tung, H.T.; Chen, Y.S.; Margaritondo, G.; Je, J.H.; Hwu, Y.

    2013-04-08

    We report recent advances in hard-x-ray optics - including record spatial resolution - and in staining techniques that enable synchrotron microradiology to produce neurobiology images of quality comparable to electron and visible microscopy. In addition, microradiology offers excellent penetration and effective three-dimensional detection as required for many neuron studies. Our tests include tomographic reconstruction based on projection image sets.

  11. Nanoresolution radiology of neurons

    SciTech Connect

    Wu, H. R.; Chen, S. T.; Chu, Y. S.; Conley, R.; Bouet, N.; Chien, C. C.; Chen, H. H.; Lin, C. H.; Tung, H. T.; Chen, Y. S.; Margaritondo, G.; Je, J. H.; Hwu, Y.

    2012-05-29

    We report recent advances in hard-x-ray optics—including record spatial resolution—and in staining techniques that enable synchrotron microradiology to produce neurobiology images of quality comparable to electron and visible microscopy. In addition, microradiology offers excellent penetration and effective three-dimensional detection as required for many neuron studies. Our tests include tomographic reconstruction based on projection image sets.

  12. Opportunity fuels

    SciTech Connect

    Lutwen, R.C.

    1994-12-31

    Opportunity fuels - fuels that can be converted to other forms of energy at lower cost than standard fossil fuels - are discussed in outline form. The type and source of fuels, types of fuels, combustability, methods of combustion, refinery wastes, petroleum coke, garbage fuels, wood wastes, tires, and economics are discussed.

  13. GaAs-based optoelectronic neurons

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lin, Steven H. (Inventor); Kim, Jae H. (Inventor); Psaltis, Demetri (Inventor)

    1993-01-01

    An integrated, optoelectronic, variable thresholding neuron implemented monolithically in GaAs integrated circuit and exhibiting high differential optical gain and low power consumption is presented. Two alternative embodiments each comprise an LED monolithically integrated with a detector and two transistors. One of the transistors is responsive to a bias voltage applied to its gate for varying the threshold of the neuron. One embodiment is implemented as an LED monolithically integrated with a double heterojunction bipolar phototransistor (detector) and two metal semiconductor field effect transistors (MESFET's) on a single GaAs substrate and another embodiment is implemented as an LED monolithically integrated with three MESFET's (one of which is an optical FET detector) on a single GaAs substrate. The first noted embodiment exhibits a differential optical gain of 6 and an optical switching energy of 10 pJ. The second embodiment has a differential optical gain of 80 and an optical switching energy of 38 pJ. Power consumption is 2.4 and 1.8 mW, respectively. Input 'light' power needed to turn on the LED is 2 micro-W and 54 nW, respectively. In both embodiments the detector is in series with a biasing MESFET and saturates the other MESFET upon detecting light above a threshold level. The saturated MESFET turns on the LED. Voltage applied to the biasing MESFET gate controls the threshold.

  14. Epigenomic Landscapes Reflect Neuronal Diversity.

    PubMed

    Henikoff, Steven

    2015-06-17

    Epigenomic profiling of complex tissues obscures regulatory elements that distinguish one cell type from another. In this issue of Neuron, Mo et al. (2015) apply cell-type-specific profiling to mouse neuronal subtypes and discover an unprecedented level of neuronal diversity. PMID:26087157

  15. What can neurons do for their brain? Communicate selectivity with bursts

    PubMed Central

    Balduzzi, D.; Tononi, G.

    2012-01-01

    Neurons deep in cortex interact with the environment extremely indirectly; the spikes they receive and produce are pre- and post-processed by millions of other neurons. This paper proposes two information-theoretic constraints guiding the production of spikes, that help ensure bursting activity deep in cortex relates meaningfully to events in the environment. First, neurons should emphasize selective responses with bursts. Second, neurons should propagate selective inputs by burst-firing in response to them. We show the constraints are necessary for bursts to dominate information-transfer within cortex, thereby providing a substrate allowing neurons to distribute credit amongst themselves. Finally, since synaptic plasticity degrades the ability of neurons to burst selectively, we argue that homeostatic regulation of synaptic weights is necessary, and that it is best performed offline during sleep. PMID:22956291

  16. Neuronal cell cycle: the neuron itself and its circumstances

    PubMed Central

    Frade, José M; Ovejero-Benito, María C

    2015-01-01

    Neurons are usually regarded as postmitotic cells that undergo apoptosis in response to cell cycle reactivation. Nevertheless, recent evidence indicates the existence of a defined developmental program that induces DNA replication in specific populations of neurons, which remain in a tetraploid state for the rest of their adult life. Similarly, de novo neuronal tetraploidization has also been described in the adult brain as an early hallmark of neurodegeneration. The aim of this review is to integrate these recent developments in the context of cell cycle regulation and apoptotic cell death in neurons. We conclude that a variety of mechanisms exists in neuronal cells for G1/S and G2/M checkpoint regulation. These mechanisms, which are connected with the apoptotic machinery, can be modulated by environmental signals and the neuronal phenotype itself, thus resulting in a variety of outcomes ranging from cell death at the G1/S checkpoint to full proliferation of differentiated neurons. PMID:25590687

  17. Metastasis suppressor 1 regulates neurite outgrowth in primary neuron cultures.

    PubMed

    Yu, Juan; Lin, Shuyun; Wang, Mei; Liang, Lijun; Zou, Zijiao; Zhou, Xinfeng; Wang, Meichi; Chen, Ping; Wang, Ying

    2016-10-01

    Metastasis suppressor 1 (MTSS1) or missing in metastasis (MIM) is an actin- and membrane-binding protein with tumor suppressor functions. MTSS1 is important for cell morphology, motility, metastasis. The role of MTSS1 in cell morphology has been widely investigated in non-neuronal tissues; however the role of MTSS1 in neurite outgrowth remains unclear. Here we investigated the effect of MTSS1 on neurite outgrowth in primary cerebellar granule and hippocampal neurons of mouse. We found that overexpression of MTSS1 in cerebellar granule neurons significantly enhanced dendrite elaboration but inhibited axon elongation. This phenotype was significantly reduced by deletion of the Wiskott-Aldrich homology 2 (WH2) motif and point mutation in the insulin receptor substrate p53 (IRSp53) and MIM/MTSS1 homology (IMD) domain. Furthermore, inhibition of Rac1 activity or blocking of phosphatidyl inositol phosphates (PIPs) signaling decreased the effect of MTSS1 markedly. In accordance with the over-expression data, knockdown of MTSS1 in cerebellar granule neurons could increase the axon length but decrease the dendrite length and the number of dendrites. In addition, MTSS1 knock down in embryonic hippocampal neurons suppressed neurite branching and reduced dendrite length. Our findings have demonstrated that MTSS1 modulates neuronal morphology, possibly through a Rac1-PIPs signaling pathway. PMID:27401056

  18. Palatability Can Drive Feeding Independent of AgRP Neurons.

    PubMed

    Denis, Raphaël G P; Joly-Amado, Aurélie; Webber, Emily; Langlet, Fanny; Schaeffer, Marie; Padilla, Stéphanie L; Cansell, Céline; Dehouck, Bénédicte; Castel, Julien; Delbès, Anne-Sophie; Martinez, Sarah; Lacombe, Amélie; Rouch, Claude; Kassis, Nadim; Fehrentz, Jean-Alain; Martinez, Jean; Verdié, Pascal; Hnasko, Thomas S; Palmiter, Richard D; Krashes, Michael J; Güler, Ali D; Magnan, Christophe; Luquet, Serge

    2015-10-01

    Feeding behavior is exquisitely regulated by homeostatic and hedonic neural substrates that integrate energy demand as well as the reinforcing and rewarding aspects of food. Understanding the net contribution of homeostatic and reward-driven feeding has become critical because of the ubiquitous source of energy-dense foods and the consequent obesity epidemic. Hypothalamic agouti-related peptide-secreting neurons (AgRP neurons) provide the primary orexigenic drive of homeostatic feeding. Using models of neuronal inhibition or ablation, we demonstrate that the feeding response to a fast ghrelin or serotonin receptor agonist relies on AgRP neurons. However, when palatable food is provided, AgRP neurons are dispensable for an appropriate feeding response. In addition, AgRP-ablated mice present exacerbated stress-induced anorexia and palatable food intake--a hallmark of comfort feeding. These results suggest that, when AgRP neuron activity is impaired, neural circuits sensitive to emotion and stress are engaged and modulated by food palatability and dopamine signaling. PMID:26278050

  19. Neuronal cell growth on polymeric scaffolds studied by CARS microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Enejder, Annika; Fink, Helen; Kuhn, Hans-Georg

    2012-03-01

    For studies of neuronal cell integration and neurite outgrowth in polymeric scaffold materials as a future alternative for the treatment of damages in the neuronal system, we have developed a protocol employing CARS microscopy for imaging of neuronal networks. The benefits of CARS microscopy come here to their best use; (i) the overall three-dimensional (3D) arrangement of multiple cells and their neurites can be visualized without the need for chemical preparations or physical sectioning, potentially affecting the architecture of the soft, fragile scaffolds and (ii) details on the interaction between single cells and scaffold fibrils can be investigated by close-up images at sub-micron resolution. The establishment of biologically more relevant 3D neuronal networks in a soft hydrogel composed of native Extra Cellular Matrix (ECM) components was compared with conventional two-dimensional networks grown on a stiff substrate. Images of cells in the hydrogel scaffold reveal significantly different networking characteristics compared to the 2D networks, raising the question whether the functionality of neurons grown as layers in conventional cultivation dishes represents that of neurons in the central and peripheral nervous systems.

  20. Phosphoinositide signaling in somatosensory neurons.

    PubMed

    Rohacs, Tibor

    2016-05-01

    Somatosensory neurons of the dorsal root ganglia (DRG) and trigeminal ganglia (TG) are responsible for detecting thermal and tactile stimuli. They are also the primary neurons mediating pain and itch. A large number of cell surface receptors in these neurons couple to phospholipase C (PLC) enzymes leading to the hydrolysis of phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate [PI(4,5)P2] and the generation of downstream signaling molecules. These neurons also express many different ion channels, several of which are regulated by phosphoinositides. This review will summarize the knowledge on phosphoinositide signaling in DRG neurons, with special focus on effects on sensory and other ion channels. PMID:26724974

  1. Neuronal synchrony: peculiarity and generality.

    PubMed

    Nowotny, Thomas; Huerta, Ramon; Rabinovich, Mikhail I

    2008-09-01

    Synchronization in neuronal systems is a new and intriguing application of dynamical systems theory. Why are neuronal systems different as a subject for synchronization? (1) Neurons in themselves are multidimensional nonlinear systems that are able to exhibit a wide variety of different activity patterns. Their "dynamical repertoire" includes regular or chaotic spiking, regular or chaotic bursting, multistability, and complex transient regimes. (2) Usually, neuronal oscillations are the result of the cooperative activity of many synaptically connected neurons (a neuronal circuit). Thus, it is necessary to consider synchronization between different neuronal circuits as well. (3) The synapses that implement the coupling between neurons are also dynamical elements and their intrinsic dynamics influences the process of synchronization or entrainment significantly. In this review we will focus on four new problems: (i) the synchronization in minimal neuronal networks with plastic synapses (synchronization with activity dependent coupling), (ii) synchronization of bursts that are generated by a group of nonsymmetrically coupled inhibitory neurons (heteroclinic synchronization), (iii) the coordination of activities of two coupled neuronal networks (partial synchronization of small composite structures), and (iv) coarse grained synchronization in larger systems (synchronization on a mesoscopic scale). PMID:19045493

  2. RNA Protein Interaction in Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Darnell, Robert B.

    2013-01-01

    Neurons have their own systems for regulating RNA. Several multigene families encode RNA binding proteins (RNABPs) that are uniquely expressed in neurons, including the well-known neuron-specific markers ELAV and NeuN, and the disease antigen NOVA. New technologies have emerged in recent years to assess the function of these proteins in vivo, and the answers are yielding insights into how and why neurons may regulate RNA in special ways—to increase cellular complexity, to spatially localize mRNA, and to regulate their expression in response to synaptic stimuli. The functions of such restricted neuronal proteins is likely to be complimented by more widely expressed RNABPs that may themselves have developed specialized functions in neurons, including Argonaute/miRNAs. Here we review what is known about such RNABPs, and explore the potential biologic and neurologic significance of neuronal RNA regulatory systems. PMID:23701460

  3. Add neurons, subtract anxiety

    PubMed Central

    Kheirbek, Mazen A.; Hen, René

    2014-01-01

    IN BRIEF To keep memories from becoming jumbled, the brain must encode the distinct features of events and situations in a way that allows them to be distinguished from one another—a process called pattern separation. Pattern separation enables us to distinguish dangerous situations from similar ones that pose no risk. People with defects in this ability may be prone to anxiety disorders. The process occurs in one of the two regions of the brain that generate neurons throughout life. These fledgling cells seem to be critical to pattern separation. Interventions that specifically boost the ranks of rookie neurons could provide new ways to regulate mood and possibly treat conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder. PMID:24974712

  4. Lightweight Substrates For Mirrors

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brown, D. Kyle

    1991-01-01

    New substrate uses conventional quasi-isotropic fabric laminate with surfacing layer of carbon-fiber paper consisting of randomly oriented chopped carbon fibers. Layered structure of fabric and paper relatively easy to manufacture. When impregnated with carbon, structure rigid and stable. Substrates of this type made quite thin, thus keeping areal weights to minimum. Mirrors of this type made faster, and cost less, than predecessors.

  5. Single neuron modeling and data assimilation in BNST neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farsian, Reza

    Neurons, although tiny in size, are vastly complicated systems, which are responsible for the most basic yet essential functions of any nervous system. Even the most simple models of single neurons are usually high dimensional, nonlinear, and contain many parameters and states which are unobservable in a typical neurophysiological experiment. One of the most fundamental problems in experimental neurophysiology is the estimation of these parameters and states, since knowing their values is essential in identification, model construction, and forward prediction of biological neurons. Common methods of parameter and state estimation do not perform well for neural models due to their high dimensionality and nonlinearity. In this dissertation, two alternative approaches for parameters and state estimation of biological neurons have been demonstrated: dynamical parameter estimation (DPE) and a Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) method. The first method uses elements of chaos control and synchronization theory for parameter and state estimation. MCMC is a statistical approach which uses a path integral formulation to evaluate a mean and an error bound for these unobserved parameters and states. These methods have been applied to biological system of neurons in Bed Nucleus of Stria Termialis neurons (BNST) of rats. State and parameters of neurons in both systems were estimated, and their value were used for recreating a realistic model and predicting the behavior of the neurons successfully. The knowledge of biological parameters can ultimately provide a better understanding of the internal dynamics of a neuron in order to build robust models of neuron networks.

  6. Simple neuron models of ITD sensitive neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dasika, Vasant; White, John A.; Colburn, H. Steven

    2002-05-01

    Neurons which show sensitivity to interaural time delay (ITD) exist in both mammalian medial superior olive (MSO), and bird nucleus laminaris (NL). In this study, we examine simple mathematical models of single MSO and NL cells which respond probabilistically to a pair of isolated inputs with a response probability that depends on the input interpulse interval. Inputs are either isolated pulse pairs or pairs of periodic trains, with or without random jitter added to their event times. Refractoriness is incorporated in the input description and/or in the cell model in specified simulations. We find that periodic rate-ITD shapes are shaped by three interacting factors: the cell's temporal response (described by the paired-pulse response), input frequency, and the degree of input synchrony. Paired-pulse responses are able to predict the widths of rate-ITD curves obtained from deterministic periodic input simulations. Reduced input synchrony predictably smears rate-ITD curves. Larger numbers of weaker inputs yield stronger rate-ITD modulation than a few strong inputs. Model response is compared with in vivo and in vitro MSO and NL physiological data. Comparisons with published analytical models as well as more complex and realistic physiological cell models are examined.

  7. Adhesion to Carbon Nanotube Conductive Scaffolds Forces Action-Potential Appearance in Immature Rat Spinal Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Toma, Francesca Maria; Calura, Enrica; Rizzetto, Lisa; Carrieri, Claudia; Roncaglia, Paola; Martinelli, Valentina; Scaini, Denis; Masten, Lara; Turco, Antonio; Gustincich, Stefano; Prato, Maurizio; Ballerini, Laura

    2013-01-01

    In the last decade, carbon nanotube growth substrates have been used to investigate neurons and neuronal networks formation in vitro when guided by artificial nano-scaled cues. Besides, nanotube-based interfaces are being developed, such as prosthesis for monitoring brain activity. We recently described how carbon nanotube substrates alter the electrophysiological and synaptic responses of hippocampal neurons in culture. This observation highlighted the exceptional ability of this material in interfering with nerve tissue growth. Here we test the hypothesis that carbon nanotube scaffolds promote the development of immature neurons isolated from the neonatal rat spinal cord, and maintained in vitro. To address this issue we performed electrophysiological studies associated to gene expression analysis. Our results indicate that spinal neurons plated on electro-conductive carbon nanotubes show a facilitated development. Spinal neurons anticipate the expression of functional markers of maturation, such as the generation of voltage dependent currents or action potentials. These changes are accompanied by a selective modulation of gene expression, involving neuronal and non-neuronal components. Our microarray experiments suggest that carbon nanotube platforms trigger reparative activities involving microglia, in the absence of reactive gliosis. Hence, future tissue scaffolds blended with conductive nanotubes may be exploited to promote cell differentiation and reparative pathways in neural regeneration strategies. PMID:23951361

  8. Catalytic combustion with incompletely vaporized residual fuel

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rosfjord, T. J.

    1981-01-01

    Catalytic combustion of fuel lean mixtures of incompletely vaporized residual fuel and air was investigated. The 7.6 cm diameter, graded cell reactor was constructed from zirconia spinel substrate and catalyzed with a noble metal catalyst. Streams of luminous particles exited the rector as a result of fuel deposition and carbonization on the substrate. Similar results were obtained with blends of No. 6 and No. 2 oil. Blends of shale residual oil and No. 2 oil resulted in stable operation. In shale oil blends the combustor performance degraded with a reduced degree of fuel vaporization. In tests performed with No. 2 oil a similar effect was observed.

  9. Neuronal nitric oxide synthase expressing neurons: a journey from birth to neuronal circuits

    PubMed Central

    Tricoire, Ludovic; Vitalis, Tania

    2012-01-01

    Nitric oxide (NO) is an important signaling molecule crucial for many physiological processes such as synaptic plasticity, vasomotricity, and inflammation. Neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) is the enzyme responsible for the synthesis of NO by neurons. In the juvenile and mature hippocampus and neocortex nNOS is primarily expressed by subpopulations of GABAergic interneurons. Over the past two decades, many advances have been achieved in the characterization of neocortical and hippocampal nNOS expressing neurons. In this review, we summarize past and present studies that have characterized the electrophysiological, morphological, molecular, and synaptic properties of these neurons. We also discuss recent studies that have shed light on the developmental origins and specification of GABAergic neurons with specific attention to neocortical and hippocampal nNOS expressing GABAergic neurons. Finally, we summarize the roles of NO and nNOS-expressing inhibitory neurons. PMID:23227003

  10. Consistent estimation of complete neuronal connectivity in large neuronal populations using sparse "shotgun" neuronal activity sampling.

    PubMed

    Mishchenko, Yuriy

    2016-10-01

    We investigate the properties of recently proposed "shotgun" sampling approach for the common inputs problem in the functional estimation of neuronal connectivity. We study the asymptotic correctness, the speed of convergence, and the data size requirements of such an approach. We show that the shotgun approach can be expected to allow the inference of complete connectivity matrix in large neuronal populations under some rather general conditions. However, we find that the posterior error of the shotgun connectivity estimator grows quickly with the size of unobserved neuronal populations, the square of average connectivity strength, and the square of observation sparseness. This implies that the shotgun connectivity estimation will require significantly larger amounts of neuronal activity data whenever the number of neurons in observed neuronal populations remains small. We present a numerical approach for solving the shotgun estimation problem in general settings and use it to demonstrate the shotgun connectivity inference in the examples of simulated synfire and weakly coupled cortical neuronal networks. PMID:27515518

  11. Colloidal Drop Deposition on Porous Substrates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Ying; Pack, Min; Hu, Han; Kim, Dong-Ook; Yang, Xin

    2015-11-01

    Printable electronics and in particular paper and textile-based electronics have fueled research in inkjet printing on porous substrates. On nonporous substrates, the particle motion of the particles and evaporation of the solvent are the two main mechanisms that drive the final deposition morphology. For porous substrates another factor, mainly infiltration, adds a layer of complexity to the deposition patterns that has not yet been elucidated in literature. In this study, a high-speed camera was used to capture the imbibition of picoliter-sized polystyrene nanoparticles in water droplets into nano-porous anodic aluminum oxide substrates of various porosities and wettabilities. For water, the infiltration rate is much faster than both evaporation and particle motion and thus when the substrate fully imbibes the droplet, the well-known ``coffee ring'' is suppressed. However, when a residual droplet forms upon the termination of the infiltration regime, the competing particle motion and evaporation regimes, tP and tEI respectively, define the critical time scales for which the coffee ring will be formed (tP /tEI <1) or suppressed (tP /tEI >1). National Science Foundation under Grant No. CMMI-1401438.

  12. Parvalbumin+ Neurons and Npas1+ Neurons Are Distinct Neuron Classes in the Mouse External Globus Pallidus

    PubMed Central

    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

  13. Metabolic reprogramming during neuronal differentiation.

    PubMed

    Agostini, M; Romeo, F; Inoue, S; Niklison-Chirou, M V; Elia, A J; Dinsdale, D; Morone, N; Knight, R A; Mak, T W; Melino, G

    2016-09-01

    Newly generated neurons pass through a series of well-defined developmental stages, which allow them to integrate into existing neuronal circuits. After exit from the cell cycle, postmitotic neurons undergo neuronal migration, axonal elongation, axon pruning, dendrite morphogenesis and synaptic maturation and plasticity. Lack of a global metabolic analysis during early cortical neuronal development led us to explore the role of cellular metabolism and mitochondrial biology during ex vivo differentiation of primary cortical neurons. Unexpectedly, we observed a huge increase in mitochondrial biogenesis. Changes in mitochondrial mass, morphology and function were correlated with the upregulation of the master regulators of mitochondrial biogenesis, TFAM and PGC-1α. Concomitant with mitochondrial biogenesis, we observed an increase in glucose metabolism during neuronal differentiation, which was linked to an increase in glucose uptake and enhanced GLUT3 mRNA expression and platelet isoform of phosphofructokinase 1 (PFKp) protein expression. In addition, glutamate-glutamine metabolism was also increased during the differentiation of cortical neurons. We identified PI3K-Akt-mTOR signalling as a critical regulator role of energy metabolism in neurons. Selective pharmacological inhibition of these metabolic pathways indicate existence of metabolic checkpoint that need to be satisfied in order to allow neuronal differentiation. PMID:27058317

  14. Genetic Enhancement of Visual Learning by Activation of Protein Kinase C Pathways in Small Groups of Rat Cortical Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Guo-rong; Wang, Xiaodan; Kong, Lingxin; Lu, Xiu-gui; Lee, Brian; Liu, Meng; Sun, Mei; Franklin, Corinna; Cook, Robert G.; Geller, Alfred I.

    2006-01-01

    Although learning and memory theories hypothesize that memories are encoded by specific circuits, it has proven difficult to localize learning within a cortical area. Neural network theories predict that activation of a small fraction of the neurons in a circuit can activate that circuit. Consequently, altering the physiology of a small group of neurons might potentiate a specific circuit and enhance learning, thereby localizing learning to that circuit. In this study, we activated protein kinase C (PKC) pathways in small groups of neurons in rat postrhinal (POR) cortex. We microinjected helper virus-free herpes simplex virus vectors that expressed a constitutively active PKC into POR cortex. This PKC was expressed predominantly in glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons in POR cortex. This intervention increased phosphorylation of five PKC substrates that play critical roles in neurotransmitter release (GAP-43 and dynamin) or glutamatergic neurotransmission (specific subunits of AMPA or NMDA receptors and myristoylated alanine-rich C kinase substrate). Additionally, activation of PKC pathways in cultured cortical neurons supported activation-dependent increases in release of glutamate and GABA. This intervention enhanced the learning rate and accuracy of visual object discriminations. In individual rats, the numbers of transfected neurons positively correlated with this learning. During learning, neuronal activity was increased in neurons proximal to the transfected neurons. These results demonstrate that potentiating small groups of glutamatergic and GABAergic neurons in POR cortex enhances visual object learning. More generally, these results suggest that learning can be mediated by specific cortical circuits. PMID:16162929

  15. Zinc oxide nanostructures as low-cost templates for neuronal circuit

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kritharidou, A.; Georgoussi, Z.; Tsamis, C.; Makarona, E.

    2013-05-01

    ZnO nanostructures were explored as templates for the development of topography-mediated neuronal cultures. Nanostructures of varying features were produced on 4" Si substrates via a rapid, facile and low-cost technique that allows the systematic investigation of nanotopographically-mediated formation of neuronal cultures. The developed ZnO-nanowire based templates were seeded with Neuro-2A mouse neuroblastoma cells and their viability over the course of 1 to 4 days was assessed. Our studies demonstrate that the ZnO-templates can support neuronal cell growth and proliferation suggesting that ZnO substrate can be used for the development of neuronal cell-based platform technologies.

  16. Encephalization, neuronal excess, and neuronal index in rodents.

    PubMed

    Herculano-Houzel, Suzana

    2007-10-01

    Encephalization, or brain size larger than expected from body size, has long been considered to correlate with improved cognitive abilities across species and even intelligence. However, it is still unknown what characteristics of relatively large brains underlie their improved functions. Here, it is shown that more encephalized rodent species have the number of neurons expected for their brain size, but a larger number of neurons than expected for their body size. The number of neurons in excess relative to body size might be available for improved associative functions and, thus, be responsible for the cognitive advantage observed in more encephalized animals. It is further proposed that, if such neuronal excess does provide for improved cognitive abilities, then the total number of excess neurons in each species-here dubbed the neuronal index-should be a better indicator of cognitive abilities than the encephalization quotient (EQ). Because the neuronal index is a function of both the number of neurons expected from the size of the body and the absolute number of neurons in the brain, differences in this parameter across species that share similar EQs might explain why these often have different cognitive capabilities, particularly when comparing across mammalian orders. PMID:17847061

  17. Data in support on the shape of Schwann cells and sympathetic neurons onto microconically structured silicon surfaces

    PubMed Central

    Simitzi, C.; Efstathopoulos, P.; Kourgiantaki, A.; Ranella, A.; Charalampopoulos, I.; Fotakis, C.; Αthanassakis, Ι.; Stratakis, E.; Gravanis, A.

    2015-01-01

    This article contains data related to the research article entitled “Laser fabricated discontinuous anisotropic microconical substrates as a new model scaffold to control the directionality of neuronal network outgrowth” in the Biomaterials journal [1]. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) analysis is performed to investigate whether Schwann cells and sympathetic neurons alter their morphology according to the underlying topography, comprising arrays of silicon microcones with anisotropic geometrical characteristics [1]. It is observed that although soma of sympathetic neurons always preserves its round shape, this is not the case for Schwann cells that become highly polarized in high roughness microconical substrates. PMID:26401519

  18. Pin1 in Neuronal Apoptosis

    PubMed Central

    Becker, Esther B.E.; Bonni, Azad

    2009-01-01

    While the role of the prolyl isomerase Pin1 in dividing cells has long been recognized, Pin1’s function in postmitotic neurons is poorly understood. We have identified a novel mechanism by which Pin1 mediates activation of the mitochondrial cell death machinery specifically in neurons. This perspective presents a sophisticated signaling pathway that triggers neuronal apoptosis upon JNK-mediated phosphorylation of the BH3-only protein BIMEL at serine 65. Pin1 is enriched at the mitochondria in neurons together with BIMEL and components of a neuron-specific JNK signaling complex and functions as a molecular switch that couples the phosphorylation of BIMEL by JNK to apoptosis specifically in neurons. We discuss how these findings relate to our understanding of the development of the nervous system and the pathogenesis of neurologic disorders. PMID:17568190

  19. Fuel pin

    DOEpatents

    Christiansen, D.W.; Karnesky, R.A.; Leggett, R.D.; Baker, R.B.

    1987-11-24

    A fuel pin for a liquid metal nuclear reactor is provided. The fuel pin includes a generally cylindrical cladding member with metallic fuel material disposed therein. At least a portion of the fuel material extends radially outwardly to the inner diameter of the cladding member to promote efficient transfer of heat to the reactor coolant system. The fuel material defines at least one void space therein to facilitate swelling of the fuel material during fission.

  20. Fuel cell oxygen electrode

    DOEpatents

    Shanks, Howard R.; Bevolo, Albert J.; Danielson, Gordon C.; Weber, Michael F.

    1980-11-04

    An oxygen electrode for a fuel cell utilizing an acid electrolyte has a substrate of an alkali metal tungsten bronze of the formula: A.sub.x WO.sub.3 where A is an alkali metal and x is at least 0.2, which is covered with a thin layer of platinum tungsten bronze of the formula: Pt.sub.y WO.sub.3 where y is at least 0.8.

  1. Fuel cell oxygen electrode

    DOEpatents

    Shanks, H.R.; Bevolo, A.J.; Danielson, G.C.; Weber, M.F.

    An oxygen electrode for a fuel cell utilizing an acid electrolyte has a substrate of an alkali metal tungsten bronze of the formula: A/sub x/WO/sub 3/ where A is an alkali metal and x is at least 0.2, which is covered with a thin layer of platinum tungsten bronze of the formula: Pt/sub y/WO/sub 3/ where y is at least 0.8.

  2. Bonded semiconductor substrate

    DOEpatents

    Atwater, Jr.; Harry A. , Zahler; James M.

    2010-07-13

    Ge/Si and other nonsilicon film heterostructures are formed by hydrogen-induced exfoliation of the Ge film which is wafer bonded to a cheaper substrate, such as Si. A thin, single-crystal layer of Ge is transferred to Si substrate. The bond at the interface of the Ge/Si heterostructures is covalent to ensure good thermal contact, mechanical strength, and to enable the formation of an ohmic contact between the Si substrate and Ge layers. To accomplish this type of bond, hydrophobic wafer bonding is used, because as the invention demonstrates the hydrogen-surface-terminating species that facilitate van der Waals bonding evolves at temperatures above 600.degree. C. into covalent bonding in hydrophobically bound Ge/Si layer transferred systems.

  3. Diesel fuel by fermentation of wastes

    SciTech Connect

    Pierce, S.M.; Wayman, M.

    1983-01-11

    An improved diesel fuel which is entirely capable of preparation from renewable resources. The fuel comprises a blend of fermentation produced butanol and fermentation produced glycerides. The substrates useful for the butanol fermentation are conventional industrial waste products, such as cheese whey and low value carbohydrate containing waste materials such as corn cobs, wood chips, etc. Similar substrate materials are used in the fermentation or growth culture of glyceride producing microbes.

  4. Decontamination of metal substrates

    SciTech Connect

    Vincent, L.D.

    1998-12-31

    A brief look at the history of surface corrosion and contamination of steel is important for understanding the best approach to proper cleaning of substrates prior to surface preparation and application of coatings and linings, particularly in immersion conditions such as encountered in railroad hopper and tank cars. All contaminants contribute to reduction of the coating or lining`s capacity to either protect the substrate or prevent contamination of the liquid cargo. This paper will explore the types of tests available to determine the levels of contamination, particularly sulfides, sulfates and chlorides, along with suggested methods to reduce theses contaminants to acceptable levels.

  5. Biaxially textured composite substrates

    DOEpatents

    Groves, James R.; Foltyn, Stephen R.; Arendt, Paul N.

    2005-04-26

    An article including a substrate, a layer of a metal phosphate material such as an aluminum phosphate material upon the surface of the substrate, and a layer of an oriented cubic oxide material having a rock-salt-like structure upon the metal phosphate material layer is provided together with additional layers such as a HTS top-layer of YBCO directly upon a layer of a buffer material such as a SrTi.sub.x Ru.sub.1-x O.sub.3 layer.

  6. The straintronic spin-neuron.

    PubMed

    Biswas, Ayan K; Atulasimha, Jayasimha; Bandyopadhyay, Supriyo

    2015-07-17

    In artificial neural networks, neurons are usually implemented with highly dissipative CMOS-based operational amplifiers. A more energy-efficient implementation is a 'spin-neuron' realized with a magneto-tunneling junction (MTJ) that is switched with a spin-polarized current (representing weighted sum of input currents) that either delivers a spin transfer torque or induces domain wall motion in the soft layer of the MTJ to mimic neuron firing. Here, we propose and analyze a different type of spin-neuron in which the soft layer of the MTJ is switched with mechanical strain generated by a voltage (representing weighted sum of input voltages) and term it straintronic spin-neuron. It dissipates orders of magnitude less energy in threshold operations than the traditional current-driven spin neuron at 0 K temperature and may even be faster. We have also studied the room-temperature firing behaviors of both types of spin neurons and find that thermal noise degrades the performance of both types, but the current-driven type is degraded much more than the straintronic type if both are optimized for maximum energy-efficiency. On the other hand, if both are designed to have the same level of thermal degradation, then the current-driven version will dissipate orders of magnitude more energy than the straintronic version. Thus, the straintronic spin-neuron is superior to current-driven spin neurons. PMID:26112081

  7. The biophysics of neuronal growth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Franze, Kristian; Guck, Jochen

    2010-09-01

    For a long time, neuroscience has focused on biochemical, molecular biological and electrophysiological aspects of neuronal physiology and pathology. However, there is a growing body of evidence indicating the importance of physical stimuli for neuronal growth and development. In this review we briefly summarize the historical background of neurobiophysics and give an overview over the current understanding of neuronal growth from a physics perspective. We show how biophysics has so far contributed to a better understanding of neuronal growth and discuss current inconsistencies. Finally, we speculate how biophysics may contribute to the successful treatment of lesions to the central nervous system, which have been considered incurable until very recently.

  8. Evolvable Neuronal Paths: A Novel Basis for Information and Search in the Brain

    PubMed Central

    Fernando, Chrisantha; Vasas, Vera; Szathmáry, Eörs; Husbands, Phil

    2011-01-01

    We propose a previously unrecognized kind of informational entity in the brain that is capable of acting as the basis for unlimited hereditary variation in neuronal networks. This unit is a path of activity through a network of neurons, analogous to a path taken through a hidden Markov model. To prove in principle the capabilities of this new kind of informational substrate, we show how a population of paths can be used as the hereditary material for a neuronally implemented genetic algorithm, (the swiss-army knife of black-box optimization techniques) which we have proposed elsewhere could operate at somatic timescales in the brain. We compare this to the same genetic algorithm that uses a standard ‘genetic’ informational substrate, i.e. non-overlapping discrete genotypes, on a range of optimization problems. A path evolution algorithm (PEA) is defined as any algorithm that implements natural selection of paths in a network substrate. A PEA is a previously unrecognized type of natural selection that is well suited for implementation by biological neuronal networks with structural plasticity. The important similarities and differences between a standard genetic algorithm and a PEA are considered. Whilst most experiments are conducted on an abstract network model, at the conclusion of the paper a slightly more realistic neuronal implementation of a PEA is outlined based on Izhikevich spiking neurons. Finally, experimental predictions are made for the identification of such informational paths in the brain. PMID:21887266

  9. Ensemble Recording of Electrical Activity in Neurons Derived from P19 Embryonal Carcinoma Cells

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takayama, Yuzo; Saito, Atushi; Moriguchi, Hiroyuki; Kotani, Kiyoshi; Jimbo, Yasuhiko

    Regeneration of the central nervous system (CNS) is one of the most important research themes in neuroscience and neuroengineering. It is essential to replenish the lost neurons and to establish appropriate functional neuronal networks using pluripotent stem cells. Little is known, however, about the properties of stem cell-derived neuronal networks, particularly under the differentiation and development processes. In this work, we cultured P19 embryonal carcinoma cells on micro-electrode arrays (MEAs). P19 cells were differentiated into neurons by retinoic acid application and formed densely connected networks. Spontaneous electrical activity was extracellulary recorded through substrate electrodes and analyzed. Synchronized periodic bursts, which were the characteristic features in primary cultured CNS neurons, were observed. Pharmacological studies demonstrated that the glutamatergic excitatory synapses and the GABAergic inhibitory synapses were active in these P19-derived neuronal networks. The results suggested that MEA-based recording was useful for monitoring differentiation processes of stem cells. P19-derived neuronal networks had quite similar network properties to those of primary cultured neurons, and thus provide a novel model system to investigate stem cell-based neuronal regeneration.

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

    PubMed Central

    Ojemann, George A.

    2013-01-01

    Findings from recordings of human temporal cortical single neuron activity during several measures of language, including object naming and word reading are reviewed and related to changes in activity in the same neurons during recent verbal memory and verbal associative learning measures, in studies conducted during awake neurosurgery for the treatment of epilepsy. The proportion of neurons changing activity with language tasks was similar in either hemisphere. Dominant hemisphere activity was characterized by relative inhibition, some of which occurred during overt speech, possibly to block perception of one’s own voice. However, the majority seems to represent a dynamic network becoming active with verbal memory encoding and especially verbal learning, but inhibited during performance of overlearned language tasks. Individual neurons are involved in different networks for different aspects of language, including naming or reading and naming in different languages. The majority of the changes in activity were tonic sustained shifts in firing. Patterned phasic activity for specific language items was very infrequently recorded. Human single neuron recordings provide a unique perspective on the biologic substrate for language, for these findings are in contrast to many of the findings from other techniques for investigating this. PMID:24961418

  11. Microglia Control Neuronal Network Excitability via BDNF Signalling

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Microglia-neuron interactions play a crucial role in several neurological disorders characterized by altered neural network excitability, such as epilepsy and neuropathic pain. While a series of potential messengers have been postulated as substrates of the communication between microglia and neurons, including cytokines, purines, prostaglandins, and nitric oxide, the specific links between messengers, microglia, neuronal networks, and diseases have remained elusive. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) released by microglia emerges as an exception in this riddle. Here, we review the current knowledge on the role played by microglial BDNF in controlling neuronal excitability by causing disinhibition. The efforts made by different laboratories during the last decade have collectively provided a robust mechanistic paradigm which elucidates the mechanisms involved in the synthesis and release of BDNF from microglia, the downstream TrkB-mediated signals in neurons, and the biophysical mechanism by which disinhibition occurs, via the downregulation of the K+-Cl− cotransporter KCC2, dysrupting Cl−homeostasis, and hence the strength of GABAA- and glycine receptor-mediated inhibition. The resulting altered network activity appears to explain several features of the associated pathologies. Targeting the molecular players involved in this canonical signaling pathway may lead to novel therapeutic approach for ameliorating a wide array of neural dysfunctions. PMID:24089642

  12. Multiple alternative substrate kinetics.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Vernon E

    2015-11-01

    The specificity of enzymes for their respective substrates has been a focal point of enzyme kinetics since the initial characterization of metabolic chemistry. Various processes to quantify an enzyme's specificity using kinetics have been utilized over the decades. Fersht's definition of the ratio kcat/Km for two different substrates as the "specificity constant" (ref [7]), based on the premise that the important specificity existed when the substrates were competing in the same reaction, has become a consensus standard for enzymes obeying Michaelis-Menten kinetics. The expansion of the theory for the determination of the relative specificity constants for a very large number of competing substrates, e.g. those present in a combinatorial library, in a single reaction mixture has been developed in this contribution. The ratio of kcat/Km for isotopologs has also become a standard in mechanistic enzymology where kinetic isotope effects have been measured by the development of internal competition experiments with extreme precision. This contribution extends the theory of kinetic isotope effects to internal competition between three isotopologs present at non-tracer concentrations in the same reaction mix. This article is part of a special issue titled: Enzyme Transition States from Theory and Experiment. PMID:26051088

  13. Substrate system for spray forming

    DOEpatents

    Chu, Men G.; Chernicoff, William P.

    2002-01-01

    A substrate system for receiving a deposit of sprayed metal droplets including a movable outer substrate on which the sprayed metal droplets are deposited. The substrate system also includes an inner substrate disposed adjacent the outer substrate where the sprayed metal droplets are deposited on the outer substrate. The inner substrate includes zones of differing thermal conductivity to resist substrate layer porosity and to resist formation of large grains and coarse constituent particles in a bulk layer of the metal droplets which have accumulated on the outer substrate. A spray forming apparatus and associated method of spray forming a molten metal to form a metal product using the substrate system of the invention is also provided.

  14. Substrate system for spray forming

    DOEpatents

    Chu, Men G.; Chernicoff, William P.

    2000-01-01

    A substrate system for receiving a deposit of sprayed metal droplets including a movable outer substrate on which the sprayed metal droplets are deposited. The substrate system also includes an inner substrate disposed adjacent the outer substrate where the sprayed metal droplets are deposited on the outer substrate. The inner substrate includes zones of differing thermal conductivity to resist substrate layer porosity and to resist formation of large grains and coarse constituent particles in a bulk layer of the metal droplets which have accumulated on the outer substrate. A spray forming apparatus and associated method of spray forming a molten metal to form a metal product using the substrate system of the invention is also provided.

  15. Sol-gel derived ceramic electrolyte films on porous substrates

    SciTech Connect

    Kueper, T.W.

    1992-05-01

    A process for the deposition of sol-gel derived thin films on porous substrates has been developed; such films should be useful for solid oxide fuel cells and related applications. Yttria-stabilized zirconia films have been formed from metal alkoxide starting solutions. Dense films have been deposited on metal substrates and ceramic substrates, both dense and porous, through dip-coating and spin-coating techniques, followed by a heat treatment in air. X-ray diffraction has been used to determine the crystalline phases formed and the extent of reactions with various substrates which may be encountered in gas/gas devices. Surface coatings have been successfully applied to porous substrates through the control of substrate pore size and deposition parameters. Wetting of the substrate pores by the coating solution is discussed, and conditions are defined for which films can be deposited over the pores without filling the interiors of the pores. Shrinkage cracking was encountered in films thicker than a critical value, which depended on the sol-gel process parameters and on the substrate characteristics. Local discontinuities were also observed in films which were thinner than a critical value which depended on the substrate pore size. A theoretical discussion of cracking mechanisms is presented for both types of cracking, and the conditions necessary for successful thin formation are defined. The applicability of these film gas/gas devices is discussed.

  16. The impact of JNK on neuronal migration.

    PubMed

    Zdrojewska, Justyna; Coffey, Eleanor T

    2014-01-01

    Incorrect placement of nerve cells during brain development leaves us at risk of diseases and conditions ranging from epilepsy and mental retardation to schizophrenia and dyslexia. The developing brain produces cells at an impressive rate, with up to 250,000 new cells generated every minute. These newborn cells migrate long distances in sequential waves to settle in the layers that make up the cerebral cortex. If a nerve cell moves too fast or too slow during this journey, it may not take the correct route or reach its appropriate destination. Much knowledge has been accumulated on molecular cues and transcriptional programs regulating cortical development. More recently, components of the c-Jun N-terminal signaling cascade have been brought to light as important intracellular regulators of nerve cell motility. In this chapter, we focus on this family of protein kinases, their upstream activators and downstream targets in the context of neuronal migration. We first present basic information on these molecules, much of which derives from studies outside the nervous system. We then highlight key findings on JNK signaling in brain where it phosphorylates brain-specific proteins that influence microtubule homeostasis. Finally, we summarize recent findings from transgenic mice on the regulation of neuronal migration by JNK cascade components and by JNK substrates. PMID:24243099

  17. Cognitive and Neuronal Systems Underlying Obesity

    PubMed Central

    Kanoski, Scott E.

    2012-01-01

    Since the late 1970’s obesity prevalence and per capita food intake in the USA have increased dramatically. Understanding the mechanisms underlying the hyperphagia that drives obesity requires focus on the cognitive processes and neuronal systems controlling feeding that occurs in the absence of metabolic need (i.e., "non-homeostatic” intake). Given that a portion of the increased caloric intake per capita since the late 1970’s is attributed to increased meal and snack frequency, and given the increased pervasiveness of environmental cues associated with energy dense, yet nutritionally deplete foods, there’s a need to examine the mechanisms through which food-related cues stimulate excessive energy intake. Here, learning and memory principles and their underlying neuronal substrates are discussed with regard to stimulus-driven food intake and excessive energy consumption. Particular focus is given to the hippocampus, a brain structure that utilizes interoceptive cues relevant to energy status (e.g., neurohormonal signals such as leptin) to modulate stimulus-driven food procurement and consumption. This type of hippocampal-dependent modulatory control of feeding behavior is compromised by consumption of foods common to Western diets, including saturated fats and simple carbohydrates. The development of more effective treatments for obesity will benefit from a more complete understanding of the complex interaction between dietary, environmental, cognitive, and neurophysiological mechanisms contributing to excessive food intake. PMID:22266286

  18. Neuronal avalanches and coherence potentials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plenz, D.

    2012-05-01

    The mammalian cortex consists of a vast network of weakly interacting excitable cells called neurons. Neurons must synchronize their activities in order to trigger activity in neighboring neurons. Moreover, interactions must be carefully regulated to remain weak (but not too weak) such that cascades of active neuronal groups avoid explosive growth yet allow for activity propagation over long-distances. Such a balance is robustly realized for neuronal avalanches, which are defined as cortical activity cascades that follow precise power laws. In experiments, scale-invariant neuronal avalanche dynamics have been observed during spontaneous cortical activity in isolated preparations in vitro as well as in the ongoing cortical activity of awake animals and in humans. Theory, models, and experiments suggest that neuronal avalanches are the signature of brain function near criticality at which the cortex optimally responds to inputs and maximizes its information capacity. Importantly, avalanche dynamics allow for the emergence of a subset of avalanches, the coherence potentials. They emerge when the synchronization of a local neuronal group exceeds a local threshold, at which the system spawns replicas of the local group activity at distant network sites. The functional importance of coherence potentials will be discussed in the context of propagating structures, such as gliders in balanced cellular automata. Gliders constitute local population dynamics that replicate in space after a finite number of generations and are thought to provide cellular automata with universal computation. Avalanches and coherence potentials are proposed to constitute a modern framework of cortical synchronization dynamics that underlies brain function.

  19. [Motor neuron disease: metabolic evaluation].

    PubMed

    Godoy, J M; Skacel, M; Balassiano, S L; Neves, J R

    1992-03-01

    The authors studied serum and urinary calcium and phosphorus levels, as well as abnormalities on the spine of 30 patients with motor neuron disease. The authors believe in multifactorial aspects in the pathogenesis of motor neuron disease, calling special attention to toxic and metabolic factors. PMID:1307483

  20. Synchronization by elastic neuronal latencies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vardi, Roni; Timor, Reut; Marom, Shimon; Abeles, Moshe; Kanter, Ido

    2013-01-01

    Psychological and physiological considerations entail that formation and functionality of neuronal cell assemblies depend upon synchronized repeated activation such as zero-lag synchronization. Several mechanisms for the emergence of this phenomenon have been suggested, including the global network quantity, the greatest common divisor of neuronal circuit delay loops. However, they require strict biological prerequisites such as precisely matched delays and connectivity, and synchronization is represented as a stationary mode of activity instead of a transient phenomenon. Here we show that the unavoidable increase in neuronal response latency to ongoing stimulation serves as a nonuniform gradual stretching of neuronal circuit delay loops. This apparent nuisance is revealed to be an essential mechanism in various types of neuronal time controllers, where synchronization emerges as a transient phenomenon and without predefined precisely matched synaptic delays. These findings are described in an experimental procedure where conditioned stimulations were enforced on a circuit of neurons embedded within a large-scale network of cortical cells in vitro, and are corroborated and extended by simulations of circuits composed of Hodgkin-Huxley neurons with time-dependent latencies. These findings announce a cortical time scale for time controllers based on tens of microseconds stretching of neuronal circuit delay loops per spike. They call for a reexamination of the role of the temporal periodic mode in brain functionality using advanced in vitro and in vivo experiments.

  1. The Neuronal Ceroid-Lipofuscinoses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bennett, Michael J.; Rakheja, Dinesh

    2013-01-01

    The neuronal ceroid-lipofuscinoses (NCL's, Batten disease) represent a group of severe neurodegenerative diseases, which mostly present in childhood. The phenotypes are similar and include visual loss, seizures, loss of motor and cognitive function, and early death. At autopsy, there is massive neuronal loss with characteristic storage in…

  2. Neuron's function revealed

    SciTech Connect

    2009-01-01

    There's a new way to explore biologys secrets. With a flash of light, scientists from the U.S. Department of Energys Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the University of California, Berkeley zeroed in on the type of neural cell that controls swimming in larval zebrafish. Using innovative light-activated proteins and gene expression techniques, the scientists zapped several zebrafish with a pulse of light, and initiated a swimming action in a subset of fish that was traced back to the type of neuron that drives the side-to-side motion of their tail fins. The technique behind this needle-in-haystack search for the neural roots of a specific behavior could become a powerful way to learn how any biological system works. http://newscenter.lbl.gov/press-releases/2009/09/16/light-activated-protein/

  3. Ethanol and neuronal metabolism.

    PubMed

    Mandel, P; Ledig, M; M'Paria, J R

    1980-01-01

    The effect of ethanol on membrane enzymes (Na+, K+ and Mg2+ ATPases, 5'-nucleotidase, adenylate cyclase) alcohol dehydrogenase, aldehyde dehydrogenase and superoxide dismutase were studied in nerve cells (established cell lines, primary cultures of chick and rat brain) cultured in the presence of 100 mM ethanol, and in total rat brain, following various ethanol treatments of the rats (20% ethanol as the sole liquid source, intraperitoneal injection). The results show a difference between neuronal and glial cells. Most of the observed changes in enzymatic activities returned rapidly to control values when ethanol was withdrawn from the culture medium or from the diet. Alcohol dehydrogenase was more stimulated by ethanol than aldehyde dehydrogenase; therefore acetaldehyde may be accumulated. The inhibition of superoxide dismutase activity may allow an accumulation of cytotoxic O2- radicals in nervous tissue and may explain the polymorphism of lesions brought about by alcohol intoxication. PMID:6264495

  4. Multiplying with Neurons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gabbiani, F.; Krapp, H.; Koch, C.; Laurent, G.

    1998-03-01

    LGMD and DCMD are a pair of identified neurons in the locust brain thought to be involved in visually triggered escape behavior. LGMD integrates visual inputs in its dendritic arbor, converts them into spikes transmitted in a 1:1 manner to DCMD which relays this information to motor centers. We measured the spike activity of DCMD during simulated object approach and observed that its peak occured prior to the expected collision. The time difference between peak activity and collision depended linearly on the ratio of object size to approach velocity, as expected if LGMD/DCMD were detecting the moment in time when the approaching object reaches a fixed angular threshold θ_thresh on the locust's retina. The response of LGMD/DCMD could be fitted by multiplying the angular velocity at which an approaching object is increasing in size over the retina, dot θ, with an exponential function of the object's angular size, θ: f(t) = g(dot θ(t-δ) e^-α θ(t-δ)) where g is a static non-linearity, α a constant related to the angular threshold detected by LGMD/DCMD (θ_thresh = arctan (2/α)) and δ denotes the lag of the neuronal response with respect to the stimulus. This suggests that LGMD/DCMD derives its angular threshold sensitivity by multiplying dot θ with an exponential of θ. A biophysical implementation would be through linear summation of excitatory and inhibitory inputs proportional to log(dot θ) and -α θ, followed by a conversion to spike rate according to the static non-linearity (g circ exp). We have performed several experiments to test this hypothesis.

  5. Neuronal cell lines as model dorsal root ganglion neurons

    PubMed Central

    Yin, Kathleen; Baillie, Gregory J

    2016-01-01

    Background Dorsal root ganglion neuron-derived immortal cell lines including ND7/23 and F-11 cells have been used extensively as in vitro model systems of native peripheral sensory neurons. However, while it is clear that some sensory neuron-specific receptors and ion channels are present in these cell lines, a systematic comparison of the molecular targets expressed by these cell lines with those expressed in intact peripheral neurons is lacking. Results In this study, we examined the expression of RNA transcripts in the human neuroblastoma-derived cell line, SH-SY5Y, and two dorsal root ganglion hybridoma cell lines, F-11 and ND7/23, using Illumina next-generation sequencing, and compared the results with native whole murine dorsal root ganglions. The gene expression profiles of these three cell lines did not resemble any specific defined dorsal root ganglion subclass. The cell lines lacked many markers for nociceptive sensory neurons, such as the Transient receptor potential V1 gene, but expressed markers for both myelinated and unmyelinated neurons. Global gene ontology analysis on whole dorsal root ganglions and cell lines showed similar enrichment of biological process terms across all samples. Conclusions This paper provides insights into the receptor repertoire expressed in common dorsal root ganglion neuron-derived cell lines compared with whole murine dorsal root ganglions, and illustrates the limits and potentials of these cell lines as tools for neuropharmacological exploration. PMID:27130590

  6. History-Dependent Excitability as a Single-Cell Substrate of Transient Memory for Information Discrimination

    PubMed Central

    Baroni, Fabiano; Torres, Joaquín J.; Varona, Pablo

    2010-01-01

    Neurons react differently to incoming stimuli depending upon their previous history of stimulation. This property can be considered as a single-cell substrate for transient memory, or context-dependent information processing: depending upon the current context that the neuron “sees” through the subset of the network impinging on it in the immediate past, the same synaptic event can evoke a postsynaptic spike or just a subthreshold depolarization. We propose a formal definition of History-Dependent Excitability (HDE) as a measure of the propensity to firing in any moment in time, linking the subthreshold history-dependent dynamics with spike generation. This definition allows the quantitative assessment of the intrinsic memory for different single-neuron dynamics and input statistics. We illustrate the concept of HDE by considering two general dynamical mechanisms: the passive behavior of an Integrate and Fire (IF) neuron, and the inductive behavior of a Generalized Integrate and Fire (GIF) neuron with subthreshold damped oscillations. This framework allows us to characterize the sensitivity of different model neurons to the detailed temporal structure of incoming stimuli. While a neuron with intrinsic oscillations discriminates equally well between input trains with the same or different frequency, a passive neuron discriminates better between inputs with different frequencies. This suggests that passive neurons are better suited to rate-based computation, while neurons with subthreshold oscillations are advantageous in a temporal coding scheme. We also address the influence of intrinsic properties in single-cell processing as a function of input statistics, and show that intrinsic oscillations enhance discrimination sensitivity at high input rates. Finally, we discuss how the recognition of these cell-specific discrimination properties might further our understanding of neuronal network computations and their relationships to the distribution and functional

  7. Mimics and chameleons in motor neurone disease

    PubMed Central

    Turner, Martin R; Talbot, Kevin

    2013-01-01

    The progression of motor neurone disease (MND) is currently irreversible, and the grave implications of diagnosis naturally fuels concern among neurologists over missing a potential mimic disorder. There is no diagnostic test for MND but in reality there are few plausible mimics in routine clinical practice. In the presence of a progressive pure motor disorder, signs such as florid fasciculations, bilateral tongue wasting, the ‘split hand’, head drop, emotionality, and cognitive or behavioural impairment carry high positive predictive value. MND is clinically heterogeneous, however, with some important chameleon-like presentations and considerable variation in clinical course. Lack of confidence about the scope of such variation, or an approach to diagnosis emphasising investigations over clinical common sense, has the potential to exacerbate diagnostic delay in MND and impede timely planning of the care which is essential to maximising quality of life. PMID:23616620

  8. Stochastic models of neuronal dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Harrison, L.M; David, O; Friston, K.J

    2005-01-01

    Cortical activity is the product of interactions among neuronal populations. Macroscopic electrophysiological phenomena are generated by these interactions. In principle, the mechanisms of these interactions afford constraints on biologically plausible models of electrophysiological responses. In other words, the macroscopic features of cortical activity can be modelled in terms of the microscopic behaviour of neurons. An evoked response potential (ERP) is the mean electrical potential measured from an electrode on the scalp, in response to some event. The purpose of this paper is to outline a population density approach to modelling ERPs. We propose a biologically plausible model of neuronal activity that enables the estimation of physiologically meaningful parameters from electrophysiological data. The model encompasses four basic characteristics of neuronal activity and organization: (i) neurons are dynamic units, (ii) driven by stochastic forces, (iii) organized into populations with similar biophysical properties and response characteristics and (iv) multiple populations interact to form functional networks. This leads to a formulation of population dynamics in terms of the Fokker–Planck equation. The solution of this equation is the temporal evolution of a probability density over state-space, representing the distribution of an ensemble of trajectories. Each trajectory corresponds to the changing state of a neuron. Measurements can be modelled by taking expectations over this density, e.g. mean membrane potential, firing rate or energy consumption per neuron. The key motivation behind our approach is that ERPs represent an average response over many neurons. This means it is sufficient to model the probability density over neurons, because this implicitly models their average state. Although the dynamics of each neuron can be highly stochastic, the dynamics of the density is not. This means we can use Bayesian inference and estimation tools that have

  9. Surface plasmon-enhanced optical trapping of quantum-dot-conjugated surface molecules on neurons cultured on a plasmonic chip

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miyauchi, Kohei; Tawa, Keiko; Kudoh, Suguru N.; Taguchi, Takahisa; Hosokawa, Chie

    2016-06-01

    Living neurons in a complex neuronal network communicate with each other through synaptic connections. The molecular dynamics of cell surface molecules localized at synaptic terminals is essential for functional connections via synaptic plasticity in the neuronal network. Here, we demonstrate surface-plasmon-resonance-based optical trapping using a plasmonic chip toward realizing effective manipulation of molecules on the surface of neurons. Surface-plasmon-enhanced optical trapping was evaluated by the fluorescence analysis of nanoparticles suspended in water and neural cell adhesion molecules (NCAMs) labeled with quantum dots (Q-dots) on rat hippocampal neurons. The motion of nanoparticles in water and the molecular dynamics of NCAMs on neuronal cells cultured on a plasmonic chip were constrained at the laser focus more effectively than those on a glass substrate because of the surface plasmon resonance effect.

  10. Two Cell Circuits of Oriented Adult Hippocampal Neurons on Self-Assembled Monolayers for Use in the Study of Neuronal Communication in a Defined System

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    In this study, we demonstrate the directed formation of small circuits of electrically active, synaptically connected neurons derived from the hippocampus of adult rats through the use of engineered chemically modified culture surfaces that orient the polarity of the neuronal processes. Although synaptogenesis, synaptic communication, synaptic plasticity, and brain disease pathophysiology can be studied using brain slice or dissociated embryonic neuronal culture systems, the complex elements found in neuronal synapses makes specific studies difficult in these random cultures. The study of synaptic transmission in mature adult neurons and factors affecting synaptic transmission are generally studied in organotypic cultures, in brain slices, or in vivo. However, engineered neuronal networks would allow these studies to be performed instead on simple functional neuronal circuits derived from adult brain tissue. Photolithographic patterned self-assembled monolayers (SAMs) were used to create the two-cell “bidirectional polarity” circuit patterns. This pattern consisted of a cell permissive SAM, N-1[3-(trimethoxysilyl)propyl] diethylenetriamine (DETA), and was composed of two 25 μm somal adhesion sites connected with 5 μm lines acting as surface cues for guided axonal and dendritic regeneration. Surrounding the DETA pattern was a background of a non-cell-permissive poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) SAM. Adult hippocampal neurons were first cultured on coverslips coated with DETA monolayers and were later passaged onto the PEG-DETA bidirectional polarity patterns in serum-free medium. These neurons followed surface cues, attaching and regenerating only along the DETA substrate to form small engineered neuronal circuits. These circuits were stable for more than 21 days in vitro (DIV), during which synaptic connectivity was evaluated using basic electrophysiological methods. PMID:23611164

  11. Opportunity fuels

    SciTech Connect

    Lutwen, R.C.

    1996-12-31

    The paper consists of viewgraphs from a conference presentation. A comparison is made of opportunity fuels, defined as fuels that can be converted to other forms of energy at lower cost than standard fossil fuels. Types of fuels for which some limited technical data is provided include petroleum coke, garbage, wood waste, and tires. Power plant economics and pollution concerns are listed for each fuel, and compared to coal and natural gas power plant costs. A detailed cost breakdown for different plant types is provided for use in base fuel pricing.

  12. Synthetic fuels

    SciTech Connect

    Sammons, V.O.

    1980-01-01

    This guide is designed for those who wish to learn more about the science and technology of synthetic fuels by reviewing materials in the collections of the Library of Congress. This is not a comprehensive bibliography, it is designed to put the reader on target. Subject headings used by the Library of Congress under which books on synthetic fuels can be located are: oil-shale industry; oil-shales; shale oils; synthetic fuels; synthetic fuels industry; coal gasification; coal liquefaction; fossil fuels; hydrogen as fuel; oil sands; petroleum, synthesis gas; biomass energy; pyrolysis; and thermal oil recovery. Basic texts, handbooks, government publications, journals, etc. were included. (DP)

  13. Dopaminergic neurons inhibit striatal output via non-canonical release of GABA

    PubMed Central

    Tritsch, Nicolas X.; Ding, Jun B.; Sabatini, Bernardo L.

    2012-01-01

    The substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc) and ventral tegmental area (VTA) contain the two largest populations of dopamine (DA)-releasing neurons in the mammalian brain. These neurons extend elaborate projections in striatum, a large subcortical structure implicated in motor planning and reward-based learning. Phasic activation of dopaminergic neurons in response to salient or reward-predicting stimuli is thought to modulate striatal output via the release of DA to promote and reinforce motor action1–4. Here we show that activation of DA neurons in striatal slices rapidly inhibits action potential firing in both direct-and indirect-pathway striatal projection neurons (SPNs) through vesicular release of the inhibitory transmitter γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA). GABA is released directly from dopaminergic axons but in a manner that is independent of the vesicular GABA transporter VGAT. Instead GABA release requires activity of the vesicular monoamine transporter VMAT2, which is the vesicular transporter for DA. Furthermore, VMAT2 expression in GABAergic neurons lacking VGAT is sufficient to sustain GABA release. Thus, these findings expand the repertoire of synaptic mechanisms employed by DA neurons to influence basal ganglia circuits, reveal a novel substrate whose transport is dependent on VMAT2, and demonstrate that GABA can function as a bona fide co-transmitter in monoaminergic neurons. PMID:23034651

  14. Generation and transplantation of reprogrammed human neurons in the brain using 3D microtopographic scaffolds

    PubMed Central

    Carlson, Aaron L.; Bennett, Neal K.; Francis, Nicola L.; Halikere, Apoorva; Clarke, Stephen; Moore, Jennifer C.; Hart, Ronald P.; Paradiso, Kenneth; Wernig, Marius; Kohn, Joachim; Pang, Zhiping P.; Moghe, Prabhas V.

    2016-01-01

    Cell replacement therapy with human pluripotent stem cell-derived neurons has the potential to ameliorate neurodegenerative dysfunction and central nervous system injuries, but reprogrammed neurons are dissociated and spatially disorganized during transplantation, rendering poor cell survival, functionality and engraftment in vivo. Here, we present the design of three-dimensional (3D) microtopographic scaffolds, using tunable electrospun microfibrous polymeric substrates that promote in situ stem cell neuronal reprogramming, neural network establishment and support neuronal engraftment into the brain. Scaffold-supported, reprogrammed neuronal networks were successfully grafted into organotypic hippocampal brain slices, showing an ∼3.5-fold improvement in neurite outgrowth and increased action potential firing relative to injected isolated cells. Transplantation of scaffold-supported neuronal networks into mouse brain striatum improved survival ∼38-fold at the injection site relative to injected isolated cells, and allowed delivery of multiple neuronal subtypes. Thus, 3D microscale biomaterials represent a promising platform for the transplantation of therapeutic human neurons with broad neuro-regenerative relevance. PMID:26983594

  15. Viscoelastic properties of individual glial cells and neurons in the CNS.

    PubMed

    Lu, Yun-Bi; Franze, Kristian; Seifert, Gerald; Steinhäuser, Christian; Kirchhoff, Frank; Wolburg, Hartwig; Guck, Jochen; Janmey, Paul; Wei, Er-Qing; Käs, Josef; Reichenbach, Andreas

    2006-11-21

    One hundred fifty years ago glial cells were discovered as a second, non-neuronal, cell type in the central nervous system. To ascribe a function to these new, enigmatic cells, it was suggested that they either glue the neurons together (the Greek word "gammalambdaiotaalpha" means "glue") or provide a robust scaffold for them ("support cells"). Although both speculations are still widely accepted, they would actually require quite different mechanical cell properties, and neither one has ever been confirmed experimentally. We investigated the biomechanics of CNS tissue and acutely isolated individual neurons and glial cells from mammalian brain (hippocampus) and retina. Scanning force microscopy, bulk rheology, and optically induced deformation were used to determine their viscoelastic characteristics. We found that (i) in all CNS cells the elastic behavior dominates over the viscous behavior, (ii) in distinct cell compartments, such as soma and cell processes, the mechanical properties differ, most likely because of the unequal local distribution of cell organelles, (iii) in comparison to most other eukaryotic cells, both neurons and glial cells are very soft ("rubber elastic"), and (iv) intriguingly, glial cells are even softer than their neighboring neurons. Our results indicate that glial cells can neither serve as structural support cells (as they are too soft) nor as glue (because restoring forces are dominant) for neurons. Nevertheless, from a structural perspective they might act as soft, compliant embedding for neurons, protecting them in case of mechanical trauma, and also as a soft substrate required for neurite growth and facilitating neuronal plasticity. PMID:17093050

  16. Simulating synchronization in neuronal networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fink, Christian G.

    2016-06-01

    We discuss several techniques used in simulating neuronal networks by exploring how a network's connectivity structure affects its propensity for synchronous spiking. Network connectivity is generated using the Watts-Strogatz small-world algorithm, and two key measures of network structure are described. These measures quantify structural characteristics that influence collective neuronal spiking, which is simulated using the leaky integrate-and-fire model. Simulations show that adding a small number of random connections to an otherwise lattice-like connectivity structure leads to a dramatic increase in neuronal synchronization.

  17. Single neuron dynamics and computation.

    PubMed

    Brunel, Nicolas; Hakim, Vincent; Richardson, Magnus J E

    2014-04-01

    At the single neuron level, information processing involves the transformation of input spike trains into an appropriate output spike train. Building upon the classical view of a neuron as a threshold device, models have been developed in recent years that take into account the diverse electrophysiological make-up of neurons and accurately describe their input-output relations. Here, we review these recent advances and survey the computational roles that they have uncovered for various electrophysiological properties, for dendritic arbor anatomy as well as for short-term synaptic plasticity. PMID:24492069

  18. Towards Automatic Classification of Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Armañanzas, Rubén; Ascoli, Giorgio A.

    2015-01-01

    The classification of neurons into types has been much debated since the inception of modern neuroscience. Recent experimental advances are accelerating the pace of data collection. The resulting information growth of morphological, physiological, and molecular properties encourages efforts to automate neuronal classification by powerful machine learning techniques. We review state-of-the-art analysis approaches and availability of suitable data and resources, highlighting prominent challenges and opportunities. The effective solution of the neuronal classification problem will require continuous development of computational methods, high-throughput data production, and systematic metadata organization to enable cross-lab integration. PMID:25765323

  19. A fish on the hunt, observed neuron by neuron

    SciTech Connect

    2010-01-01

    This three-dimensional microscopy image reveals an output neuron of the optic tectum lighting up in response to visual information from the retina. The scientists used this state-of-the-art imaging technology to learn how neurons in the optic tectum take visual information and convert it into an output that drives action. More information: http://newscenter.lbl.gov/feature-stories/2010/10/29/zebrafish-vision/

  20. Structural Properties of the Caenorhabditis elegans Neuronal Network

    PubMed Central

    Varshney, Lav R.; Chen, Beth L.; Paniagua, Eric; Hall, David H.; Chklovskii, Dmitri B.

    2011-01-01

    Despite recent interest in reconstructing neuronal networks, complete wiring diagrams on the level of individual synapses remain scarce and the insights into function they can provide remain unclear. Even for Caenorhabditis elegans, whose neuronal network is relatively small and stereotypical from animal to animal, published wiring diagrams are neither accurate nor complete and self-consistent. Using materials from White et al. and new electron micrographs we assemble whole, self-consistent gap junction and chemical synapse networks of hermaphrodite C. elegans. We propose a method to visualize the wiring diagram, which reflects network signal flow. We calculate statistical and topological properties of the network, such as degree distributions, synaptic multiplicities, and small-world properties, that help in understanding network signal propagation. We identify neurons that may play central roles in information processing, and network motifs that could serve as functional modules of the network. We explore propagation of neuronal activity in response to sensory or artificial stimulation using linear systems theory and find several activity patterns that could serve as substrates of previously described behaviors. Finally, we analyze the interaction between the gap junction and the chemical synapse networks. Since several statistical properties of the C. elegans network, such as multiplicity and motif distributions are similar to those found in mammalian neocortex, they likely point to general principles of neuronal networks. The wiring diagram reported here can help in understanding the mechanistic basis of behavior by generating predictions about future experiments involving genetic perturbations, laser ablations, or monitoring propagation of neuronal activity in response to stimulation. PMID:21304930

  1. PPG neurons of the lower brain stem and their role in brain GLP-1 receptor activation.

    PubMed

    Trapp, Stefan; Cork, Simon C

    2015-10-15

    Within the brain, glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) affects central autonomic neurons, including those controlling the cardiovascular system, thermogenesis, and energy balance. Additionally, GLP-1 influences the mesolimbic reward system to modulate the rewarding properties of palatable food. GLP-1 is produced in the gut and by hindbrain preproglucagon (PPG) neurons, located mainly in the nucleus tractus solitarii (NTS) and medullary intermediate reticular nucleus. Transgenic mice expressing glucagon promoter-driven yellow fluorescent protein revealed that PPG neurons not only project to central autonomic control regions and mesolimbic reward centers, but also strongly innervate spinal autonomic neurons. Therefore, these brain stem PPG neurons could directly modulate sympathetic outflow through their spinal inputs to sympathetic preganglionic neurons. Electrical recordings from PPG neurons in vitro have revealed that they receive synaptic inputs from vagal afferents entering via the solitary tract. Vagal afferents convey satiation to the brain from signals like postprandial gastric distention or activation of peripheral GLP-1 receptors. CCK and leptin, short- and long-term satiety peptides, respectively, increased the electrical activity of PPG neurons, while ghrelin, an orexigenic peptide, had no effect. These findings indicate that satiation is a main driver of PPG neuronal activation. They also show that PPG neurons are in a prime position to respond to both immediate and long-term indicators of energy and feeding status, enabling regulation of both energy balance and general autonomic homeostasis. This review discusses the question of whether PPG neurons, rather than gut-derived GLP-1, are providing the physiological substrate for the effects elicited by central nervous system GLP-1 receptor activation. PMID:26290108

  2. INTRANUCLEAR MATRIX METALLOPROTEINASES PROMOTE DNA DAMAGE AND APOPTOSIS INDUCED BY OXYGEN–GLUCOSE DEPRIVATION IN NEURONS

    PubMed Central

    HILL, J. W.; PODDAR, R.; THOMPSON, J. F.; ROSENBERG, G. A.; YANG, Y.

    2016-01-01

    Degradation of the extracellular matrix by elevated matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) activity following ischemia/reperfusion is implicated in blood–brain barrier disruption and neuronal death. In contrast to their characterized extracellular roles, we previously reported that elevated intranuclear MMP-2 and -9 (gelatinase) activity degrades nuclear DNA repair proteins and promotes accumulation of oxidative DNA damage in neurons in rat brain at 3-h reperfusion after ischemic stroke. Here, we report that treatment with a broad-spectrum MMP inhibitor significantly reduced neuronal apoptosis in rat ischemic hemispheres at 48-h reperfusion after a 90-min middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO). Since extracellular gelatinases in brain tissue are known to be neurotoxic during acute stroke, the contribution of intranuclear MMP-2 and -9 activities in neurons to neuronal apoptosis has been unclear. To confirm and extend our in vivo observations, oxygen–glucose deprivation (OGD), an in vitro model of ischemia/reperfusion, was employed. Primary cortical neurons were subjected to 2-h OGD with reoxygenation. Increased intranuclear gelatinase activity was detected immediately after reoxygenation onset and was maximal at 24 h, while extracellular gelatinase levels remained unchanged. We detected elevated levels of both MMP-2 and -9 in neuronal nuclear extracts and gelatinase activity in neurons co-localized primarily with MMP-2. We found a marked decrease in PARP1, XRCC1, and OGG1, and decreased PARP1 activity. Pretreatment of neurons with selective MMP-2/9 inhibitor II significantly decreased gelatinase activity and downregulation of DNA repair enzymes, decreased accumulation of oxidative DNA damage, and promoted neuronal survival after OGD. Our results confirm the nuclear localization of gelatinases and their nuclear substrates observed in an animal stroke model, further supporting a novel role for intranuclear gelatinase activity in an intrinsic apoptotic pathway in neurons

  3. The neuronal and actin commitment: Why do neurons need rings?

    PubMed

    Leite, Sérgio Carvalho; Sousa, Mónica Mendes

    2016-09-01

    The role of the actin cytoskeleton in neurons has been extensively studied in actin-enriched compartments such as the growth cone and dendritic spines. The recent discovery of actin rings in the axon shaft and in dendrites, together with the identification of axon actin trails, has advanced our understanding on actin organization and dynamics in neurons. However, specifically in the case of actin rings, the mechanisms regulating their nucleation and assembly, and the functions that they may exert in axons and dendrites remain largely unexplored. Here we discuss the possible structural, mechanistic and functional properties of the subcortical neuronal cytoskeleton putting the current knowledge in perspective with the information available on actin rings formed in other biological contexts, and with the organization of actin-spectrin lattices in other cell types. The detailed analysis of these novel neuronal actin ring structures, together with the elucidation of the function of actin-binding proteins in neuron biology, has a large potential to uncover new mechanisms of neuronal function under normal conditions that may have impact in our understanding of axon degeneration and regeneration. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26784007

  4. Synthetic Fuel

    ScienceCinema

    Idaho National Laboratory - Steve Herring, Jim O'Brien, Carl Stoots

    2010-01-08

    Two global energy priorities today are finding environmentally friendly alternatives to fossil fuels, and reducing greenhouse gass Two global energy priorities today are finding environmentally friendly alternatives to fossil fuels, and reducing greenhous

  5. Synthetic Fuel

    SciTech Connect

    Idaho National Laboratory - Steve Herring, Jim O'Brien, Carl Stoots

    2008-03-26

    Two global energy priorities today are finding environmentally friendly alternatives to fossil fuels, and reducing greenhouse gass Two global energy priorities today are finding environmentally friendly alternatives to fossil fuels, and reducing greenhous

  6. Tinbergen on mirror neurons

    PubMed Central

    Heyes, Cecilia

    2014-01-01

    Fifty years ago, Niko Tinbergen defined the scope of behavioural biology with his four problems: causation, ontogeny, survival value and evolution. About 20 years ago, there was another highly significant development in behavioural biology—the discovery of mirror neurons (MNs). Here, I use Tinbergen's original four problems (rather than the list that appears in textbooks) to highlight the differences between two prominent accounts of MNs, the genetic and associative accounts; to suggest that the latter provides the defeasible ‘best explanation’ for current data on the causation and ontogeny of MNs; and to argue that functional analysis, of the kind that Tinbergen identified somewhat misleadingly with studies of ‘survival value’, should be a high priority for future research. In this kind of functional analysis, system-level theories would assign MNs a small, but potentially important, role in the achievement of action understanding—or another social cognitive function—by a production line of interacting component processes. These theories would be tested by experimental intervention in human and non-human animal samples with carefully documented and controlled developmental histories. PMID:24778376

  7. Optical Stimulation of Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Thompson, Alexander C.; Stoddart, Paul R.; Jansen, E. Duco

    2014-01-01

    Our capacity to interface with the nervous system remains overwhelmingly reliant on electrical stimulation devices, such as electrode arrays and cuff electrodes that can stimulate both central and peripheral nervous systems. However, electrical stimulation has to deal with multiple challenges, including selectivity, spatial resolution, mechanical stability, implant-induced injury and the subsequent inflammatory response. Optical stimulation techniques may avoid some of these challenges by providing more selective stimulation, higher spatial resolution and reduced invasiveness of the device, while also avoiding the electrical artefacts that complicate recordings of electrically stimulated neuronal activity. This review explores the current status of optical stimulation techniques, including optogenetic methods, photoactive molecule approaches and infrared neural stimulation, together with emerging techniques such as hybrid optical-electrical stimulation, nanoparticle enhanced stimulation and optoelectric methods. Infrared neural stimulation is particularly emphasised, due to the potential for direct activation of neural tissue by infrared light, as opposed to techniques that rely on the introduction of exogenous light responsive materials. However, infrared neural stimulation remains imperfectly understood, and techniques for accurately delivering light are still under development. While the various techniques reviewed here confirm the overall feasibility of optical stimulation, a number of challenges remain to be overcome before they can deliver their full potential. PMID:26322269

  8. Nitrification in a zeoponic substrate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McGilloway, R. L.; Weaver, R. W.; Ming, D. W.; Gruener, J. E.

    2003-01-01

    Clinoptilolite is a zeolite mineral with high cation exchange capacity used in zeoponic substrates that have been proposed as a solid medium for growing plants or as a fertilizer material. The kinetics of nitrification has not been measured for NH4+ saturated zeoponic substrate. Experiments were conducted to evaluate the production of NO2- and NO3-, and nitrifier populations in zeoponic substrates. Small columns were filled with zeoponic substrate inoculated with a commercial inoculum or soil enrichment culture of nitrifying bacteria. In addition to column studies, a growth chamber study was conducted to evaluate the kinetics of nitrification in zeoponic substrates used to grow radishes (Raphanus sativus L.). The zeoponic substrate provided a readily available source of NH4+, and nitrifying bacteria were active in the substrate. Ammonium oxidation rates in column studies ranged from 5 to 10 micrograms N g-1 substrate h-1, and NO2- oxidation rates were 2 to 9.5 micrograms N g-1 substrate h-1. Rates determined from the growth chamber study were approximately 1.2 micrograms N g-1 substrate h-1. Quantities of NH4+ oxidized to NO2- and NO3- in inoculated zeoponic substrate were in excess of plant up-take. Acidification as a result of NH4+ oxidation resulted in a pH decline, and the zeoponic substrate showed limited buffering capacity.

  9. Alternate fuels

    SciTech Connect

    Ryan, T.W.; Worthen, R.P.

    1981-02-01

    The escalating oil prices and shortages of petroleum based fuels for transportation have made research work on various fuel alternatives, especially for transportation engines, a priority of both the private and public sectors. This book contains 18 papers on this subject. The range of options from the development of completely non-petroleum-based fuels and engines to the use of various non-petroleum gasoline and diesel fuel extenders and improvers are discussed.

  10. Polyphenolic Antioxidants and Neuronal Regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Ataie, Amin; Shadifar, Mohammad; Ataee, Ramin

    2016-01-01

    Many studies indicate that oxidative stress is involved in the pathophysiology of neurodegenerative diseases. Oxidative stress can induce neuronal damages, modulate intracellular signaling and ultimately leads to neuronal death by apoptosis or necrosis. To review antioxidants preventive effects on oxidative stress and neurodegenerative diseases we accumulated data from international medical journals and academic informations’ sites. According to many studies, antioxidants could reduce toxic neuronal damages and many studies confirmed the efficacy of polyphenol antioxidants in fruits and vegetables to reduce neuronal death and to diminish oxidative stress. This systematic review showed the antioxidant activities of phytochemicals which play as natural neuroprotectives with low adverse effects against some neurodegenerative diseases as Parkinson or Alzheimer diseases. PMID:27303602